4 years later
I had just arrived home from work, and even before the word, "Tadaima" had left my mouth, a little greenette came running straight at me, screaming.
"Daddy!" shouted my only daughter Hotaru. She had inherited her mother's looks, right down to the green hair, and feline eyes. "There's a monster after me!" she screamed, latching onto my legs.
"A monster?" I asked in an amused voice. The words had barely left my lips when my father-in-law came running around the corner, headed straight for us.
Hotaru hid behind my legs, but he easily caught her and picked her up, tickling her.
Giggling hysterically, she said, "G-grandpa! L-let go! S-s-stop it!"
Smiling, I took my daughter from Nanjiro and she clung to me, still letting out a giggle every few seconds. Frowning, I said in a playful voice, "Are you sure you should be running around so much, oyaji?" I had picked up Ryoma's and Ryoga's habit of calling their father 'oyaji' not too long after the triplets were born.
Frowning, he said, "You insolent brat! How dare you imply that I'm old! I'm still quite young, you know!"
"Right," I said, rolling my eyes.
As the former tennis spluttered angrily, Hotaru's brothers poked their head around the corner.
"Dad!" they shouted at the same time and ran towards me. The older one, Senri, had inherited my silvery hair colour and general face shape, but his eyes were a bright amber, the exact shade of his mother's. Meanwhile, Daichi was the exact opposite. He had my stormy grey eyes, but his face and hair were those of his mother's.
"Hey guys!" I said, bending down to ruffle their hair playfully and kiss them both once on the forehead. "Where's your mother?"
"She and uncle Ryoga are still at their match."
"Still?" I asked, raising an eyebrow. "Didn't it start like three hours ago?"
"Last time I checked, they were in at a 167-166 tie-break. It didn't look like it was going to end anytime soon," supplied Nanjiro helpfully.
Letting out a growl, I went to the living room and took a look at the television screen, which was obviously turned to my wife's match. The kids watched every single one of her matches that they could, and if anyone told them they couldn't, they would yell and scream until they were given permission.
"I should never have let her go to this one."
Nanjiro came up behind me and smirked. "Oh, give it a rest, Keigo. You know you would never have been able to change her mind. Anyways, this is going to be her last match for two whole years, you should let her enjoy it."
"Whatever," I said, putting Hotaru down. "Anyways, I'm going upstairs for a shower."
Tiredly dragging myself out of my car, I walked up to the large double doors of the mansion I lived in with my family.
When I got to the doors, I immediately straightened out a little. I knew that Keigo had originally been really reluctant about letting me play this match, and the fact that it had gone on so long had probably put him in an even worse mood.
The moment I stepped over the threshold, my sons and daughter threw themselves at me, shouting, "Mom's home!"
Smiling, I greeted them all with kisses on the forehead, and a "How was your day?"
Only seconds after the attack, Keigo walked in, looking worried.
Snaking his arms around my waist, he gave me a quick peck on the lips and said, "Welcome home."
"Eww!" the three children shrieked at the PDA.
Laughing, I said, "Why don't you guys go outside and play, hm? Mommy and daddy have something important to discuss."
"Hai!" they all shouted simultaneously.
When they were gone, I turned back to my husband and dropped a longer, more passionate kiss on his lips. "Don't look like that. I'm fine."
Sighing, he said, "I know, but I still can't help but be worried. You're three months pregnant after all. You need to be more careful."
I let out a small laugh. We'd only gotten the news about the new arrival a few weeks ago, and already Keigo had gone into overprotective husband mode.
"You're even more nervous than the first time," I teased him. "It'll be fine! Mom is still around, and even though Heiyomi-chan can't come this time around, Kisaki-chan said she'd help too," I said, mentioning my brother's fiancée. "So you don't need to worry your pretty little head off."
He sighed, and a gentle smile softened his features. "I know, but I can't help but worry. It's one of the many things that come with being a father and a husband; always worrying that my precious ones will get hurt."
Laughing, I pulled away a little and headed towards the kitchen. "None of us will get hurt! You need to lighten up, Kei-chan!" I said, feeling a rush of nostalgia at using my nickname for him from when we were still teens.
"Not gonna happen," he said, rolling his eyes as he followed me.
"So, you two are done being all cuddly?" a voice interrupted us and I looked towards the counter to see my father sitting there, eating a slice of cake.
"Hey oyaji!" I said cheerfully.
Then suddenly, I'm not sure why, I suddenly remembered a long-forgotten question I still didn't have the answer to.
"Ne, oyaji?" I asked. "You never did tell me why Ryoga and I were separated when we were little."
Nanjiro just smiled lazily and said, "Oh, well, you know how they say that twins supposedly have this strong bond?"
"Well, a lot of people were saying when you two were born that you would make a deadly doubles pair when you were older because of that so called bond. Well, I wanted to see if that was true. See, I always thought that twins were so close because they did everything together while growing up. So I wanted to see what would happen if you guys grew up separately."
There was a lengthy silence after he finished.
Then, after a long moment, I said, "So the only reason I spent most of my childhood believing I was an only child was because you wanted to test out a stupid superstition?"
Nodding nonchalantly, my father said, "Sounds about right."
"Baka!" I shouted, lunging at him. Unfortunately though, Keigo caught me before I could do any real harm and my father immediately fled the room, shouting, "Wah! Senri! Daichi! Hotaru! You're okaa-chan is so scary!"
SkyGem: Ahaha, Nanjiro is such an idiot XD Anyways…wow, I really can't believe that it's finally done…this story of mine that's been going on for more than a year is finally done! I suddenly feel so lonely! *Sniffles* It's like Hidden Himesama all over again! I'm going to miss this plotline a lot…although…maybe I'll write a short sequel for this sometime in the future. ^_^ . Anyways, to everyone who stayed with this fic 'til the very end, thank you so very much, and please do leave one last review on your way out. To those of you who haven't already, I would love it if you could check out some of my other fics, ne? There are quite a few Royal Pair ones and some other pairings too! Anyways, goodbye for now, and I look forward to your continued support! *Bows deeply* Sayonara, minna-san.
P.S. Ahaha, I just realized that both this and Hidden Himesama have 25 chapters XD I swear, I didn't plan that. That's so weird, though!