She hung around until about four thirty, than started looking for Ryou to tell him goodbye, sense, now that she thought about it, she hadn't seen him around but once or twice today. She knew that she'd find him in his room, and started heading there. She climbed the stairs slowly, savoring the moment until she reached his door. Than she knocked. There was shuffling on the other side, and than the blonde telling her to enter. She pushed the door open, turning the handle, and stepped inside. He was at his computer, she stopped to look over his shoulder like always. It was a site about house arrest. Her jaw dropped. What was he up to? She stepped closer until she was standing next to where he was sitting.

"Look, I want to help you out."

Ryou turned in his office chair, and faced her. Ichigo was hesitant to answer. She really needed a place to stay- if that was what he was talking about. "Help me?" She smiled, hopeful. "Help me out like how?" The blonde was silent for a while, maybe thinking about, how he should word what he was about to say. She moaned and cradled her face in her hands, taking a seat on his bed. "Ryou," He glanced over at the window on the computer one more time before answering her finally.

"Keiichiro has to visit his ill sister for a while and will be leaving this weekend on a plane to go see to her. That's what we were discussing right before you interrupted us on the staircase." He stated. Ichigo just sat there, on his bed, holding her face.

"And what?" She questioned him in a confused voice, wondering if he said that he wanted to help her out, why was he talking about Keiichiro's sick sister.

"Andyou're in need of a place to stay." There it was, this was getting to the invitation of her staying with them. "Keiichiro has to take all of his belongings anyways, seeing that he will be gone for a month or so, depending on the condition of his sister. All that will be left in his room will be the bed and desk, the pictures on the walls. So if you'd like, keeping in mind that you only have a few hours to decide, you could take his room for the duration of his being gone." Ichigo looked up at him, her smile was so wide, she hadn't been this happy in a while. She brushed her hair back behind her ears and stood up to embrace him.

"You're kidding me," Ryou shook his head. Ichigo wrapped her arms around the blonde and held on tight. "Thanks so much, thank you thank you, thank you!" Ryou didn't hug back, in fact, he pushed her off of him and sent her to thank Keiichiro.

"Just helpping out an employee."

Ichigo hurried down the hallway to find Keiichiro, her feet carried her to his bedroom door and she stood in front of it. She brushed her hair with her fingers and straightened up. She knocked. She waited. Ichigo exhaled the breath she had been holding when the door opened to the tall brunette. He greeted her sweetly. "Momomiya-san." With that kind smile, she couldn't help but smile and greet him back gingerly.

"I just wanted to come by and thank you for allowing me to occupy your room while you're gone and I'm under... House arrest." She hesitated on the last part of her sentence, but it came out anyways. Akasaka bowed and excused himself to the kitchen to help close up shop. She watched him leave, peeked through the open bedroom door to get a feel for where she would be living for the next month or so. It was a roomy space, large with a green tinted wallpaper. There was a rather wide window in the middle of the far wall with a desk perched directly in front of it. There was a twin bed shoved in a corner, looking completely out of place in this open room. It had brass legs and a tan bed cover draped over it. She shut the door behind her before taking her leave back to Ryou's room.

"Ryou," She called down the hallway, while walking to her destination. "Ryou," She repeated entering the room now, walking back to where he was laying now, on his bed. He propped himself up by his elbows and looked at her sharply.

"Ichigo, Ichigo." He mocked. "What?" The pinkette tried to brush off his being a jackass and say what she came to say.

"Thanks again." He nodded and laid himself back down, staring at the ceiling again, waiting for her to leave. "By the way." She started up talking again.

"Yes strawberry?" He used her nickname. This either meant that he was in a teasing sort of mood, or tired, and if it was that he was tired, she had better find herself gone soon.

"Um, the lady is coming tomorrow at noon to hook up the system to me. That machine that I can't be outside of a hundred feet of?" She started to bite her nails.

"I know the one." He tore his glace from the ceiling to paste it to her eyes.

"Well I'll have to be over here by noon tomorrow. Is that alright?" She asked, not wanting to seem like a burden this early in the game. She waited as he thought, and after a while of him not answering, she actually though that he might have fallen asleep with his eyes open.

"Yeah, bring over all of your things and we'll set you up in the spare office for now. You would be living there instead of Keiichiro's room, but I need the spare for some summer shipments coming in, and besides, it barely fits the couch that's in there. I wouldn't make you stay there for four months." He was stringing out his point now, a sign that he's soon to fall asleep. At only five in the evening, he was a busy man, lucky to be finished with his work so soon. "And there are some parents your legal guardians have to sign so that you can live here for the term." She gathered the papers and thanked him again, leaving him to sleep when she left.

She hurried out the door of the cafe home to tell her mother where she would be staying. On the way, the sun was setting slowly and she realized that she wouldn't be outside like this for another four months. So she slowed to a short walk and continued heading home. Something inside her made her feel sort of like her old self. Light, happy and pure. She still wore the same old clothes, the same pink room, and the same mews. She then decided to wake up the old her for good. No more of this out of character stuff. A smile was plastered on her face all the way home.

She shoved her key in the front door and opened it up to her mother standing there, looking her straight in the face, with keys in her own hands.

"Ichigo, I was just about to go by the cafe to pick you up." Did she expect her to be out later? Ichigo handed her mother the legal papers. They both stood still, until the mountain cat pushed her way through the front door and started towards her room, picking up a suitcase from the hall closet on the way. Her smile stayed untouched.

"I found a place to stay, Mom." She bragged. Her mother watched her until she reached her room, a surprised look on her face. Like she didn't think that anyone would want such a burden of this current Ichigo for four months. "It's cool Mom, it's at the cafe." She called from the other room.

"That's good." Her mom brushed through her short locks of red, slowly, much like Ichigo does, and stepped back into the house, locking the door behind her and placing her keys back on the end table. Her stride was fast, on her way to continue her conversation face to face with her daughter, the thought of actually regretting kicking her out popping into mind. "The judge called today."

"And?" Ichigo sounded chipper, even for the subject of the house arrest.

"And... He said that a lady will be coming tomorrow at noon." She looked at the legal papers in her hands, sighing. "Maybe you'd like to stay home for the duration of your term?" She shrugged, seeing the pinkette packing clothes into the suitcase they had used on a family trip in years passed. But instead of packing clothes for a family outing, she was packing clothes for outing the family. It was her own fault, she had already given the idea that she didn't want her daughter anymore. But that wasn't the case, she just didn't want what she had become anymore. And the smile that she had been greeted with at the door just moments ago, woke memories of the loving, kind-hearted Ichigo that everyone could fall in love with. Ichigo slowed her packing and looked up at her mother.

"You mean it?" The room's atmosphere was thick now, and still, her face was plastered with pleasure. Her mother nodded, and only then did she refuse the offer. "Mom, no. Sorry, but," Something was telling her that she needed the change, she needed to get out of the house and witness something great. This was the only way she was going to see anyone for the next four months.

"Ichi-" She held her hand out, facing her palm.

"Mom, I'd like to live at the cafe for now. It's the only way that I won't go crazy. I know this is a punishment and I deserve it, but please, let me just leave this place for a while and start over in a better atmosphere. I hate this neighborhood, and these people. They've only been bad influences on me." She threw her last idem of clothing in the bag and zipped it shut, ready to eat dinner and retire for the night.

"...That's a good decision dear, that's how we brought you up. Always doing whats best for your future, with the exception of the last few months." They laughed together, embracing each other tightly. Once they parted, they left the mew's room for dinner.

After they finished eating, Ichigo dressed for bed, turned off the lights and laid herself down on her bed. 'I hope Mom isn't too upset.' She wondered and rolled over on her side, falling asleep fast.

Her father appeared in the doorway to wake her. "Ichigo, you should start getting ready to go now, the lady is going to be here to drive you to the cafe in about an hour." She stretched and that's when it hit her.

This was going to be the longest hour of her life.

She savored the shower's hot water as it fell down her body. Butterflies overtook her stomach the whole time she spent dressing and than eating breakfast. For a long while, she just stared in the mirror at herself, examining her hair, her eyes, her mouth and nose. Than she tried passing the time by sitting in the living room, watching tv. But the commercials were so long that it became uninteresting and she had to go get up and do something else. Her mother entered the kitchen, where Ichigo was sifting through the cabinets again, about to eat to pass the time.

"So the lady is here. Her name is Ms. Tae." What a coincidence, the name stabbed Ichigo right in the heart. And her mother saw it too, getting the same impression from this lady's name as her daughter. She gave her mother a fake smile, a long hung and greeted the officer out in front of the house after saying goodbye to her father, who loaded her suitcase into the trunk.

"Hello Ichigo, I'm Tae, your officer for the next four months, and I'll be hooking you up just as soon as we get to our destination." Ichigo was surprised when she saw that this woman had talked to her nicely and was a gorgeous blonde. The whole car ride to the cafe, this lady was very kind as to console the mew over her experiences as a stupid teenager. As they pulled up to the mew mew cafe and The officer's instructions started, and the mew listened carefully.

"This brace is waterproof, and if you try to remove it, the light will turn red and the police station will be notified. This reciver, you can't exceed outward of onehundred feet, and if this is unplugged, the police statino will be notified." Keiichiro and Ryou stood right beside Ichigo the whole time, taking it all in as the braclet was strapped to her ankle.

After Ms. Tae left, Ryou showed Ichigo to her temporary room, the spare office.

"Thanks so much, Ryou. I can't thank you enough." She flashed a smile as he tossed her suitcase on the single couch in the room.

"No problem." He smiled back, obviously in a better mood than he was yesterday afternoon. It's amazing how good deeds make you feel. "But there's one thing." Ichigo sat next to him on the green couch and listened, saying nothing. "Keiichiro and I discussed this last night, and we decided that you'll be working in the kitchen to earn your living. And that shouldn't be a problem, considering that the diner is within one hundred feet of the hookup." His smile shone bright on his face as he revieled this information.

"Sure! Sure! Anything, I owe it all to you." She folded her legs underneath her and held her hands in her lap, gazing at him thankfully until he agreed.

"Well, make yourself at home, strawberry." And with that, he was up and standing in the doorway of the spare office, looking back at her. "Cause you're going to be here for a while."

I know, I know. Isn't this just a terrible tease? When is he going to just jump on her like a mad animal?! Right? Well, maybe sooner than you think. :D REVIEW MUTHA'FUCKA'S.