Her wide brown eyes just kept on staring at me. Staring and staring. Ever since I had opened up my book and began to read she had watched me closely. I tried to ignore her, but I had to admit it was rather annoying. It wasn't like I was in the middle of something interesting, so why was she so intent on me? And it wasn't like she didn't have anything to play with and amuse herself with. Haruka and Juuri had left her with many toys so she wouldn't be bored, but instead of playing with all her new toys, she decided to take it upon herself to keep on looking at me. And it was wearing on my patience.
I had never before spent much time alone with Yuki before, we have been in the same room because we all lived in the same room, but we rarely talked to each other. Or rather I never talked to her. Yuki had tried to talk to me a few times when she was younger, and I would answer politely but I never tried to carry on the conversation. It wasn't that I hated her, because I didn't. All I felt for her was just indifference. And if I was being completely honest to myself, I was perhaps slightly jealous of her too.
When Yuki was born Haruka and Juuri were delighted, and Yuki had become instantly the apple of their eye. That was all to be expected, she was their daughter after all. Their true daughter, not another person entirely who had only been placed in Haruka and Juuri's child's body, like I was. That was probably the reason why I felt a bit of jealousy towards Yuki. She was happily born as Haruka and Juuri's daughter, while I was only a fake son. Even though I knew it wasn't actually Yuki's fault that things turned out that way, I couldn't help but feeling jealous every now and again.
And I did realise that one day Yuki would eventually become my wife. But that probably wouldn't make a difference. It was rare when two purebloods married for love like Haruka and Juuri. For most purebloods having a wife or husband was only convenient. It provided them someone who would make them look good for public appearances. And of course, it gave them someone who they would be able to carry on the pureblood line with. Other then that however, most pureblood couples never were with each other.
Yuki's eyes were still looking up at me, which made me glance up at her to see what exactly she was staring so intently at. Seeing her sitting up on the chair she was seated on was almost comical. The chair was so huge compared to her because she was so tiny it looked as if she was only a small doll that a child had placed there. A ghost of a small smile suddenly came to my face, but it was quickly gone.
This wasn't lost on Yuki.
"Why did you smile, onii-sama?" Yuki asked, her face tilted slightly.
"I was thinking of something funny," I replied, as I began to read my book again.
"What was funny?" Yuki said, a small frown appeared on her lips as if she was frustrated at something.
"Then why did you smile, onii-sama?"
I gritted my teeth because I was starting to get a bit frustrated myself and a little more then annoyed at her with her constant questions. I tried to ignore her… unsuccessfully.
"I never saw onii-sama smile before," mused Yuki to herself. "He's usually so serious. Mommy even said that he only smiled once in his life, but didn't like it, so he never smiled again."
After a short pause, she started to again. "Onii-sama, what are you reading?"
I looked up again at her, surprised at the new direction of her thoughts. Yuki hated reading, I knew, and she had never inquired about a book in her whole life as far as I could remember.
"Othello by William Shakespeare," I answered.
She suddenly smiled, delighted that I was finally answering her back. Her smile lit up her entire face.
"Is it interesting, onii-sama?"
"It's interesting… but I think I prefer King Lear or Macbeth," I said, and then I surprised myself by going on, "It's about a man who is conned into killing his wife."
"Did the man love his wife?" she asked, her eyes wide with shock or with interest I couldn't tell.
"I think he did, the only reason he killed her was because he believed she had been with another man."
"But if he really did love her he wouldn't kill her even if. Daddy told me that mommy could desert him and he would still love her," Yuki replied, her eyes wide in earnest.
"You might be right," I agreed slowly, "but sometimes it can be hard for a man to watch the person he loves walk away from him."
"Do you love anyone, onii-sama?" Yuki asked, her face alive with curiosity.
"I love my family," I answered carefully.
"Not that sort of love. I mean the love that mommy and daddy have."
My eyes locked on her for a minute, as I studied her face while I thought over her question. She had a gentle sort of face, I realised, a kind one. I never had looked at Yuki like this before. Actually, I never had given her even much thought before.
"No," I eventually answered.