Kaoru sighed irritably as another white envelope had "mysteriously" appeared on his desk. The day had only just begun, too! He blew his hair out of his amber eyes as he scanned the note. The handwriting was extremely sloppy, but if he squinted enough, it was readable. Blah, blah, blah. There wasn't a single original thing in this note. Even the place this girl had asked to meet him was a frequent spot for fangirl confessions. But one thing caught his eye before he folded up and tossed it to Hikaru, who was next to him. Her name. Thalia Gillespie. Huh? That wasn't a name he'd ever heard of. In fact, it didn't even sound Japanese. Ah, well, she was probably a transfer or something. It didn't matter.
Hikaru grinned devilishly after he had also read it. All the twins needed to do was look at each other before deciding what to do with her. The good ol' switcheroo would do the trick. At least now they had something to look forward to.
Thalia's heart pounded nervously as she leaned against the stone wall. Her eyes darted around nervously as she watched for signs of Kaoru. The mere thought of him brought a slight blush to her face. But she shook her head; now was not the time to lose her cool. Normally, she wasn't the type to squeal and gush over one of the popular boys, but there was just something about this guy.
The sound of shoes tapping on marble made her jump, and her head whipped to the right so fast that her blonde hair smacked her in the face. For a second, she was happy to see Kaoru, but a closer inspection made her green eyes narrow. This wasn't Kaoru, but his twin brother Hikaru. What in the world was he doing here? "Hey, Hikaru. Where is Kaoru?" She called out, thankful that her voice wasn't shaky with nerves. Hikaru shook his head. "When will you girls ever stop making that mistake? This is Kaoru. You know, the one you wrote that note to?" Thalia smiled and used her left foot as leverage to push herself off the wall. She walked slowly towards him, her eyes looking around. There, behind the tree. "You really think I'm stupid enough to not know who I wrote the note to? You're Hikaru. And Kaoru is watching from that big tree over there." She nodded in his direction before calling out, "KAORU! I see you, you can come out!" He hesitated before strolling over, clearly a bit miffed that his cover was blown.
"How did you know?" Kaoru asked, trying to sound like he didn't care, but not quite succeeding. Thalia rolled her eyes. "I'm not dumb or blind. You two are actually quite different. Kaoru is kinder and a bit more shy. Hikaru is short-tempered and is more belligerent. I can see it in your faces, and from the way you act."
"What are you, some kind of stalker?" Hikaru asked, clearly angry. This just made Thalia giggle. "No. I've seen this all from watching you in class, where I sit right behind you." With this, she walked right between them before turning back and adding, "Don't play mind games with people who already know how to play them better." And she walked off.
Hikaru and Kaoru asked around, finally learning that Thalia was an exchange student from America. She'd been here two weeks, and had left after school the day she'd given that letter to Kaoru. Soon enough, she'd slipped from their minds, and they thought they'd almost forgotten her, until her name came up three years later.
"Hmm, this client is rather interesting. Over a month of visits, and she hasn't settled on a host. Normally, it only takes a girl about two. That, and she hasn't ever requested the twins." Kyouya stated. "What's her name?" Kaoru asked, only half paying attention as he played a DS game against Hikaru. "Thalia Gillespie." He said.
"WHAT?" The twins shouted in unison, even dropping their games at the same time. Even though she hadn't even crossed their minds in three years, there was no way they could forget the first girl to truly outsmart them at their own game. But they hadn't seen a glimpse of her. She was short, with wavy blonde hair and sharp green eyes. Kyouya said she'd been coming here for a month, but surely they would've seen her, even out of the corner of their eyes. Were Kaoru and Hikaru really that unobservant? They hoped not.
Kyouya cocked an eyebrow at their outburst. "Do you know her?" Hikaru opened his mouth to answer, but the door opened, and the club was forced to jump into their positions. Today, they were dressed as mountain hikers. Yes, not very glamorous, but budget was tight (Honey's sweets), and Kyouya had manged to get the gear for cheap. Tamaki was upset that he wasn't elegantly dressed, but that didn't stop him from immediately rushing up to the girl and taking her face into his hands. "My lady, it may be cold in these mountains, but the fire between us is more than enough to keep us warm." Her pale face was slightly tinged pink as she smiled, but there was no hint of the usual, "Oh, Tamaki!" that was accompanied by a swoon. She didn't even giggle.
"OH-HO! A girl that isn't totally wooed by Tamaki! Good to see she has a good head on her shoulders!" The twins shouted. This made Tamaki falter back, instantly pale. "She barely even blushed. Am I...losing my touch?" This made him gasp loudly, and dash over to Kyouya, grabbing his shoulders and shaking him hard. "AM I LOSING MY TOUCH? AM I?"
"Stop touching me." Kyouya said as he leveled Tamaki with a glare. Clearly frightened for his life, Tamaki then sprinted over to Haruhi, whose shoulders he also grabbed. "Haruhi! Does Daddy make you blush?" Haruhi replied with a simple, "No." With this, the Host Club King crawled over to the corner and sat there, muttering about how old he was getting, and considering retirement. The entire show made the girl giggle. She wasn't much taller than Haruhi, and had chin-length black hair with subtle teal streaks that peeked out undearneath each side of her head. Her eyes were a familiar shade of green. "Welcome, Gillespie-san."
The girl laughed. "Kyouya-san, feel free to use my first name. Gillespie's such a mouthful. And as if I need -san. I'm just a plain old girl." Kyouya nodded. "As you wish, Thalia-chan." Both Kaoru's and Hikaru's mouths dropped. "Thalia-chan?" She looked so different! So much older and mature and...beautiful. Kaoru thought he couldn't take his eyes off of her, until he was proven wrong when her gaze transferred to his. He quickly turned his head, his face redder than his hair. "Ah, Hikaru. Kaoru. How have you guys been? And when did you get so tall? Last time I saw you, you were MY height!" She giggled again. "You both are even better looking, if I can believe that." She strode up and wrapped her arms around both their waists, and pulled them in for a big bear hug. Kaoru was immensely thankful that she couldn't see how bad he was blushing. How fair was this? Last time, she'd had a crush on him, now HE seemed to be the infatuated one.
Hikaru glanced over at his brother and had to stifle back a laugh. Ahhh, go figure. Yeah, she was definitely a looker now, but nothing stunning. Although, as far as personality and brains went, Kaoru could definitely do worse. She definitely wasn't another squealing, mindless fangirl, as she'd proven years ago. She'd been able to outsmart them then, who knows how smart she was now? She'd probably give Haruhi a run for her money.
Thalia released Kaoru and Hikaru, still beaming. "Thalia, you've changed a lot yourself. Your hair..." Kaoru started, but trailed off, getting lost in her eyes. They were so green...Thalia giggled; she seemed to do that a lot. "Yeah. My hair was permed at the time, it's naturally stick straight. And blonde's so boring, I feel much more myself in black and teal."
"You know, Thalia, your Japanese is quite fluent considering how little you've been here." Kyouya noted. "Why, thank you," Thalia said, "I'd been studying furiously the past three years. I knew from my first day here that Ouran was the school for me, so I made sure my grades were flawless so I could actually get here on scholarship. That, and..." By this point, Thalia had strolled over to Haruhi. She threw her arms around the Host's neck, since they were around the same height. "Haruhi's an amazing teacher!"