Mikan Sakura silently gave each person in the room a curious glance as she sat tensely on the couch.
There were twelve of them in total, six boys and six girls. This was the first time all of them had seen each other and from this day on, they are going to live together for exactly ten weeks.
She asked herself again how she got herself into this setup. It all started when her neighbor and friend, Misaki Harada, encouraged her to go into an audition for a reality TV show where twelve strangers are going to live together in one house for a period of time. She was reluctant at first but when Misaki told her that there would be a total prize of ¥1,000,000 for every contestant, her eyes instantly turned into money sign.
And so she went to the audition, or more likely, the interview where she was asked with random questions like which Hollywood couple does she like better: Brangelina or TomKat, and if she was given a choice, would she like to be the reincarnation of Adolf Hitler. Mikan was temporarily at lost as she tried to comprehend the questions. She didn't even know that Tom Cruise was married to Katie Holmes, and why on earth would she want to be a Hitler reincarnate? But she still answered the questions even though she was pretty sure her answers made no sense at all.
After that, she told herself not to expect anymore since it sounded really impossible for her to be chosen out of thousands of people who auditioned. But two weeks later, she received a call from one of the producers and informed her that she was going to be one of the twelve 'housemates' in that new reality TV show called Full House.
She couldn't believe it at first but when it finally sunk into her head, she started screaming and jumping up and down out of joy. When Misaki and her grandfather heard her, they quickly ran to her and asked worriedly what was wrong. Then Mikan suddenly realized that she couldn't actually be part of the show because there was no way she could leave her grandfather, her only living relative, to live alone in their house. Her grandpa is very old and though he may look strong despite his age, he was actually getting weaker and gets sick a lot lately. Mikan brought him to the doctor once to have him checked up; the doctor's fee and the medicines she had to buy cost them a whole month of savings.
But Misaki insisted that she should do it and not to worry about her grandfather. Misaki volunteered herself to take care of Mikan's grandpa while Mikan is gone. Mikan thought about it. The only reason why she even bothered to go to the audition was because of the money. She needs it so she can finally give her grandfather everything he needs. The money she earns as a waitress in a coffee shop was not enough to buy her grandpa's medicines. And so she made her final decision and that was to become, as they call it, a 'housemate' in the new reality TV show.
And now, here she is, with the eleven people she had never met in her life until now. And for the next ten weeks, she has to live and try to get along with them. How hard could that be? Well, it seems hard enough as Mikan tried to assess her fellow housemates in her head.
Everyone seems to be so… different from her. They seem to be the same age as her, but they kind of looked intimidating but not quite.
Mikan was getting tensed by the minute as she sits in silence with the rest of them in the wide living room. No one was speaking and the only noise that could be heard was the frequent shuffling of some of the housemates on their seats, and the tapping of fingers on the side table of the guy with sandy blonde hair.
Mikan never expected the first day to be so quiet like this. Sure it was natural for them to feel awkward, but they've been sitting there for almost twenty minutes already and no one was trying to speak up and introduce themselves. It isn't normal at all… well, at least to Mikan, it isn't. She was generally a friendly person but she isn't the type who would start a conversation to strangers, especially now that these people are making her feel a little bit inferior.
Several more seconds later, when Mikan was about to talk to the girl who was sitting nearest to her, a loud, cheerful voice coming from the speakers that were installed in the corners of the ceiling took over the silence in the living room.
"Good afternoon, my dear housemates! It looks like everyone's having fun and getting along well!..." Mikan heard one of the guys snorted, and the girl with short green semi-perm hair muttered a sarcastic 'yeah, right'. "…First, let me introduce myself. My name is Narumi, but you can call me Narumi!"
Then the voice laughed as though what he just said was the funniest thing. The others remained impassive but Mikan couldn't help letting out a small giggle. She somehow finds the man –or at least she thinks it's a man; he sounded so gay— funny. Everyone turned to her and gave her a weird look but their attention was held up again when Narumi continued talking.
"As you all know, the twelve of you are going to live in this house for the next ten weeks and no one's allowed to go out. For every week, there's a task that each and every one of you must accomplish. Each housemate would earn ¥100,000 for every weekly task accomplished, so cooperation is very important. Failure to do the task would mean no ¥100,000 for everyone. At the end of the show, if all tasks are successfully carried out, each housemate would get a total of ¥1,000,000…"
Everyone listened as Narumi continued talking but Mikan immediately noticed that the beautiful yet stoic-looking girl with short black hair sitting closest to her brightened up at the mention of the cash prize.
"…misbehavior would not be tolerated and would be subjected to punishment. Housemates who will be violating the house rules will be punished. The lists of house rules are posted inside both the boys' and girls' rooms. It's a mandatory that all housemates are familiar with them to avoid violations. For every violation committed, ¥50,000 will be deducted from your accumulated money. So I advise every one of you to behave well and be good, ayt? And don't even bother to deny it if I told you that you've violated a house rule or done something inappropriate because I see everything…" Narumi said in a sweet, kind-of-creepy, cheerful tone that made Mikan feel Goosebumps all over.
"There's a total of one hundred surveillance cameras installed all over the house and the garden and pool area, so no point hiding from me, my dear housemates. Oh and that includes the bathrooms as well—"
"What? The bathrooms have cams, too?! How the heck do you expect us to take a bath or use the toilet, you pervert!" The girl with green semi-perm hair shouted angrily before Narumi could continue further.
Mikan and the other girls nodded in agreement. She was about to raise that question herself but Permy here did it first.
Narumi just let out a happy laugh then answered, "Don't worry about that, the cameras inside the bathrooms will be turned off if a housemate is using it for hygienic purposes like bathing or taking a poo or pee, but other than those, the cameras are still working if the bathroom is used for other purposes like gossiping."
Mikan felt a bit relieved. She wouldn't be able to bear it if she knew that there are other people watching her take a bath or doing stuff that requires her to be naked. That was just beyond creepy.
"Anyway, moving on, I would also be assigning special tasks to some of you from time to time. Though special tasks are not group effort, it's only for the housemate who I've assigned the task to. If you need or feel like talking to me, you know, chitchat or something, you can just go to the confession room and I'll be there twenty-four-seven. Hmmm… so any more questions you want to ask me before I give you the task for the week?"
"None? Good!" Narumi exclaimed happily when no one said anything. "Okay, now for your task, I'll give you an easy one since this is only the first week. The housemates will have to make their own choreography for the song Lollipop by 2NE1. By the end of this week, everyone will perform the choreographed dance steps complete with costumes. Every housemate should know and have memorized the dance moves. No exception. This is a group work, so if one housemate fails to cooperate, then everyone fails, alright? And let me tell ya, I don't accept crappy performance so be prepared, be very prepared. That would be all. Oh and you have to divide household chores among yourselves, okay? You guys are also the ones going to cook your own meal. So, any questions? Violent reactions? None? Awesome! Have fun, dear housemates! For the next ten weeks, you guys are stuck here. I just hope everyone won't be so disobedient, because in this house, I am the law. Till next time!" Before anyone in the room could react to everything Narumi said, he was already gone.
And then there was silence again.
But the silence was eventually broken by the sandy blonde haired guy.
"Was that Narumi a guy or a woman? I couldn't tell." The guy asked to no one in particular.
The other guy with an almost bald head suddenly broke into laughter. "Who knows? I don't think it was human at all!"
Then some of the people in the room started laughing. Mikan couldn't help but laugh, too.
"You guys do know that he could still hear and see us, don't you?" The guy wearing eyeglasses said uneasily.
"Chill, four eyes." Another guy, the one with golden brownish hair, said, grinning to the guy with eyeglasses.
"Hey! That's not a very nice thing to call someone." The girl with long dark blue hair threw a reproachful look at the guy with golden brownish hair, but he ignored her as he continued laughing with the guy beside him.
Mikan saw a faint blush formed on the cheeks of the guy with eyeglasses after the blue-haired girl went to his defense, and then cleared his throat to speak again. "A-Anyway, I think it's best if we introduce ourselves first one by one so we can be familiar with each other…"
"Fine. I'll start first," Permy volunteered as she straightened her back and crossed her legs. "I'm Sumire Shouda, and I'm a fashion design student. Actually, I just got back from Paris last week. I was invited to watch a fashion show and I got to sit at the front row because my mom is, like, an editor of a fashion magazine and she's, like, so important. She's got so many connections and everything. I was actually sitting right next to Victoria Beckham and—"
"We said introduce, not brag." The sandy blonde haired guy cut Sumire off, which caused the guys to start laughing again. Sumire turned red from anger as she picked a throw pillow from the couch then threw it on the guy who cut her off.
"You introduce yourself then, you mongrel!" Sumire fumed.
Sandy blonde haired guy flashed Permy a wide smile before he started introducing himself to everyone.
"Hi, everyone! I'm Kokoro Yome, but you can call me Koko! Actually, I just got back from Narnia because my mom's, like, the queen of that land and she's, like, a VIP there. She's got all the connections and all that shiznit. I was actually sitting right next to Prince Caspian and on my left was Aslan, you know, the lion, when we were having dinner. It was, like, the bomb!" Koko finished with a smirk directed towards Sumire. Almost everyone was laughing hard as Koko mimicked Sumire's tone when he made his introduction.
Sumire threw another throw pillow—the throw pillow was actually doing its purpose—but Koko successfully dodged it.
"That's not even funny!" Sumire shouted.
"Who said I'm being funny?" Koko countered happily.
"Uh, I guess that's enough for both of y-you…" The guy with eyeglasses said nervously. "I'll introduce myself next. My name is Yuu Tobita. I joined Full House because I need money for school. C-College is really expensive… I'm an Economics student in Tokyo University—"
"Really? You go to Tokyo University? I study there, too!" The girl with dark blue hair suddenly blurted out excitedly. Yuu's face brightened as he turned to her.
"Yeah, I'm a second year. What are you taking up?" He asked interestedly.
"Biochemistry. I'm a first year. I've never seen you around the campus before, though. 'must be because we're in different buildings."
"How cute! This must be fate! You two must be meant for each other!" The girl with long pink curly hair squealed as she looked at the two Tokyo University students with sparkling eyes. Yuu and the dark blue haired girl both turned beat red which caused Koko and two other guys laughed out loud.
Mikan giggled as she enjoyed herself from watching her two fellow housemates from blushing furiously.
Yuu slightly bowed his head down and pretended to fix his eyeglasses then turned again to the blue haired girl. "W-What's your name again?"
The girl smiled shyly as she said her name, "Nonoko Ogasawara"
The girl with pink hair went to introduce herself next. "Hi, I'm Anna Umenomiya. I go to a cooking school. I really love cooking and baking, and it's my dream to have my own restaurant someday."
After Anna, the guy with an almost bald head presented himself, "My name's Mochu. I'm here… I dunno… just for fun, I guess."
"I'm Kitsuneme," The guy with golden brownish hair said next. "I joined because I had nothing better to do. That's all."
The next one to speak was the girl close to Mikan.
"Hotaru Imai. I'm after the money. That's all you have to know." The stoic girl said emotionlessly. Mikan gulped. That girl was a definite Ice Queen.
Mikan cleared her throat before she went to introduce herself, "I'm Mikan Sakura. You can call me Mikan… I'm eighteen years old and I used to work as a waitress in a coffee shop and—"
"You're a waitress? Ew." Sumire cut her off, disgust showed on her face.
Mikan felt her face turned red. She was never embarrassed of her job before but the way Sumire made it sound, it seems like it was the most degrading thing.
"What's wrong about being a waitress? It's a decent job." Hotaru butted in, her tone still impassive. Sumire made another irritated grunt as Mikan turned to the stoic girl with gratitude.
The girl sitting next to Sumire went to speak next.
"I-I'm… I mean, my name is N-Nobara Ibaragi… My b-brother wanted me to join here…" The girl finished; her voice barely audible and her head bowed down.
When Mikan first laid eyes on Nobara, she thought the girl looked a bit snobbish like Sumire, but she realized that Nobara was just extremely shy and nervous. Mikan tried to catch her eyes and gave her a warm smile. Nobara seemed to have loosened up a bit and tried to smile back.
Now, ten of them had finished introducing themselves. Only two guys were left and they were obviously the best-looking among the guys. The one has golden blonde hair with warm blue eyes and the other has messy raven hair with piercing crimson orbs. Both were equally handsome although the blonde guy looks more of a prince charming and the other looks devilishly gorgeous.
Sumire, Anna, and Nonoko were practically ogling at the two while Mikan watched them curiously.
The blonde seemed to have realized that he and the raven-haired guy beside him were the only ones who haven't done the introduction. He straightened his back and gave them a warm, friendly smile.
"I'm Luca Nogi. I'm taking up veterinary medicine in a university. I wish to be a veterinarian in the future." The guy ended with a smile that was enough for the other girls to almost swoon on their seats. Mikan had to admit that he really is good-looking.
Everyone then turned to the only housemate who hasn't said a thing since they arrived in the house.
Luca leaned a little closer to the raven-haired guy when the latter was still not saying anything and whispered, "It's your turn."
The guy sighed, looking bored, before he muttered his name, "Natsume Hyuuga."
They waited for him to continue but when he leaned his back on the couch and averted his eyes away from them, they realized that that was the end of it and he's not going to add any more details about himself.
Yuu then clapped his hands together and stood up.
"Now that we're done with the introduction, we have to talk about what we should do about our first task. Is anyone here a dancer or knows how to dance?" Yuu asked to all of them.
Anna shyly raised her right hand. "I was a cheerleader back in high school. I know some moves…"
"Great! Then Anna will be leading us! But it doesn't mean that she's going to do all the work. Each and every one of us must, at least, contribute something, okay?"
"Yeah, yeah, we know, four eyes. But can we just talk this over later? Some of us here really want to rest for a little while." Kitsuneme whined.
"Huh? O-Okay then…"
Everyone got up from their seats and started heading to their rooms.
"Hey, who's gonna make dinner tonight?" Mochu asked before entering the boys' room.
"I guess I can do it." Anna answered back.
"I'll help Anna." Mikan volunteered then smiled at Anna.
"So what do you think about the guys?" Anna asked when the girls were finally alone in their room.
The girls' room was wide and spacious. There were six single beds. There were also closets and drawers for each of them.
The girls started arranging their things.
"They're kind of funny…" Mikan replied as she arranged her clothes inside her closet.
"Funny? They're not funny! Especially that stupid mongrel, Kokowhatshisname! I can't believe I'm actually here! If not only for Natsume and Luca, I would've torn this house down so I can leave this hellhole!" Sumire ranted as she slumped herself on her bed.
"Why are you here then, in the first place?" Nonoko asked.
Sumire's face wrinkled in annoyance. "I lost a bet to my friend. Whoever gets the lower grade in my design class would join this stupid show. Damn, I wasn't even expecting I'd pass the stupid audition! I guess I'm just cool like that…"
Mikan tried to hide her smile as Sumire continued talking. She couldn't decide if Permy was being conceited or she's just overly confident of herself.
Mikan grabbed a shirt and a pair of shorts. She wanted to change into something more comfortable before she and Anna start making dinner. She went out of the room and went to the bathroom to change.
As she got inside the bathroom, she took off her pants and blouse, and then put on her shorts, leaving her only in her bra. But as she was about to put on her shirt, the bathroom door suddenly opened. Mikan turned around in surprise and was shocked to see crimson eyes staring back at her.
Mikan did the first thing that came to her mind, and that was to scream.
Author's note: This is inspired by the reality TV show 'Big Brother', as you may have noticed already. But there's no eviction here and all that stuff they do in the show. This is not exactly like Big Brother; I just borrowed the concept on which these people will live together in one house for a period of time and they will have to do the tasks assigned to them. There's really no plot, I'm just writing this for fun. Some of the future tasks and scenes that I will use in this story will be based on the season one of Pinoy Big Brother. :)
I've started writing chapter two already. I'm trying to write the chapters in advance so I can update regularly. :P
Disclaimer: Gakuen Alice and Big Brother aren't mine. Boohoo.