Standard disclaimer applies. SDK fans should know who the creator is, and it definitely isn't me.
Summary: A man goes up into the mountain searching for the one woman everyone calls the Love Doctor. They say she's the wisest, bravest woman of all, and every brave man that stays with her for one month goes home to his wife and never leaves! Enter Hiro, who learns a lesson he'll never forget! CU, KyoxYuya
This is set after the MANGA people. NOT the anime! The anime sucked, and everyone who actually read the manga will probably agree with me.
Hello! I just finished reading the final chapter for the billionth time, and it just filled me up with such googly goodness I was in the mood for some fluff, big time. Though, I have to admit, there's really not going to be a whole lot of overt fluff, since this is Kyo I'm talking about, but the giggly, warm-feeling-in-your-stomach kind of fluff, revolving around my two favorite characters and some dude I made up to fit the story line.
Enjoy, and please review!
The Love Doctor
Sugisaki Hiro sighed heavily as he dragged another foot up the mountain, pausing to wipe sweat off his forehead. Seriously, how did he get dragged into doing this? How could Chiyo think that by living with some strange woman for a month was going to improve their marriage? If anything, he thought she'd get jealous and accuse him of cheating. But then again…
"I hear she's hideous anyways. A real pug nosed woman! So I don't care if you live with her for a year, you better not come back until you've learned your lesson!"
Except he didn't even know what his lesson was supposed to be! How could he help it if she was insecure about their marriage? She was the one all the rumors were going around about, with all the men whispering to him about her unfaithfulness… So why was he the one being banished from his own home?
Growling, he kicked at a rock, then yelped as he slid a couple feet down the path he'd been climbing. Groaning, he just adjusted his pack and continued on. When he reached level ground, he looked for the darkest path to the forest and headed there.
The only instructions given were: Go up that mountain. Go deep into woods. You'll find it eventually.
Yeah, like that'll ever happen. He was tempted just to camp out for a month and then go home. Not like anyone would know if he never found the damn place. Stupid Chiyo. It was just like her to assume that he had been the one cheating! He only went on long trips because he was a trader. It was the kind of job that put food on the table and money in her pocket so she could go waste it on things they didn't need, like kimonos she'd never wear and jewelry she'd only display in her bedroom.
Grumbling to himself, he was only slightly relieved when he saw a large basin in the distance. It was probably created from all the snow that melted in the summer time, the rocks creating a natural pool so high up in the mountains. He let out a relieved breath as he knelt by the pool, dipping a small rag into the water and cleaning his face as much as he could from dirt and sweat. He hated being dirty.
He looked across the water, peace stealing into him at the tranquil picture it made. Lush forest, huge boulders surrounding a clear, beautiful lake, and an endlessly blue sky. He could see why someone would want to live up here.
His eyes followed the shore of the lake, blinking when he saw a long wooden dock near the other side of the lake, and there seemed to be a small dark haired girl kicking her heels as she fed a few birds stale pieces of bread. What on earth is a little girl doing all the way out here without her parents? he thought, a little outraged. The one thing he hated above all else were neglectful parents. He made his way to the dock, stepping a little loudly on the planks so the little girl would hear him and not become frightened.
She was wearing a dark violet kimono with a black obi, and her dark hair was laying long and loose down her back. She turned her head when he got close, and he blinked when the widest, most innocent green eyes blinked at him out from the most adorable little face he'd ever seen. Now he was even more angry at the girls parents, because pretty little girls definitely shouldn't be running around unchaperoned.
He knelt down beside her with a gentle smile. She looked to be about five, and he hoped she remembered where she lived. He hadn't seen her around town at all, but that didn't really mean anything since he was never really home nowadays. "Hi there, cutie. What on earth are you doing so far from home? Don't you know it's dangerous out here alone?"
The girl cocked her head to the side and blinked those wide eyes at him again, and he knew if Chiyo were here she'd squeal like a little girl and hug the child to death from her cuteness alone. Then the little girl opened her mouth, and he blinked as she spoke in a matter-of-fact tone not generally heard of from one so young. "I'm not far from home, mister." She pointed in the direction of the woods. "I live that way with my Mommy and Daddy."
Anger sparked again. What was she doing out alone? And by a lake? What if she drowned? Memories pushed at the walls in his mind, and he ruthlessly shoved them back as he smiled down at the girl. "You're parents let you play by yourself?"
"Well…" She kicked her heels, throwing more bread into the water. "Daddy says Mommy needs to be punished since she was being a bad girl, and told me I needed to disappear for an hour or two while he punishes her." She leaned in close to a suddenly twitchy Hiro, whispering conspiratorially into his ear. "Last time Mommy punished me for being bad, I had to stand in a corner for ten minutes with a bar of soap in my mouth! She said I wasn't supposed to repeat the bad words Daddy always says. Even though she says them too!"
Hiro had to forcibly close his gaping jaw. "Oh, er. That's good? Um. How long has it been since you were told to, er, disappear?"
The little girl cocked her head to the side again and looked up at the sky. "I think it's safe to go back. Mommy always seems really embarrassed when Daddy says stuff like that, so I always leave so she has some privacy. I know I wouldn't want to see any of my friends see me getting punished. They'd tease me forever! But I've been here for a while so…"
Hiro swallowed his anger and ruffled her hair. "Aren't your parents worried that someone would come and kidnap you?"
"Why? Is that why you're here?"
The question came out so smoothly for a moment he had to remind himself he was talking to a five year old. He cleared his throat. "No, it's not. I'm Hiro, by the way. What's your name?"
She beamed up at him and threw the rest of the bread in the water, dusting her hands carelessly before standing up. Even with him kneeling, she barely topped his head she was so tiny. "My name is Chiyomi!" She bubbled out. "Now we're not strangers anymore!"
He smiled easily and held out his hand. "Want me to walk you back home?"
She considered his hand for a moment before taking it. "Okay."
Sighing a little, he let her tug him in the direction of her home. "You really shouldn't be so friendly with strangers, Chiyomi-chan. What if I were really here to kidnap you?"
"My Daddy would come and get me." She said without hesitation, the kind of blind trust and confidence every child grows up feeling for their parents. But such blind devotion would get her hurt one day, just like it did him. But it wasn't his place to warn the little girl, and she probably wouldn't understand anyways.
He cleared his throat. "What if he wasn't in time? What if you got hurt or… worse?"
"Then my daddy would kill them!" She said with a bubbly laugh, tugging on his hand when his steps slowed.
Hiro had to do a double take when the words came out so bubbly and innocent, and he stared down at the beaming little girl without knowing what to say. What kind of child spoke of death with a smile on her face? "Uh…"
She let go of his hand and started running, and he looked up to see a beautiful house up ahead with sweet smelling wisteria framing the property. He blinked, wondering how such loveliness existed up here and no one knew about it. It was obviously lovingly taken care off, with the grounds well manicured and the wooden porch gleaming with wax.
A woman walked around from the house, young, slim, and exotically beautiful. Her blonde hair gleamed with silver highlights in the sun, and her skin was tan and blemish free. She wore a lovely white kimono with a dash of embroidered red flowers flowing over one shoulder and around the cuffs and hem, with a deep red obi. The kimono stopped just above her knees, and he assumed she wore the style because she worked a lot from living up in the mountains.
Her calves were slim and toned, her feet small and delicate. Her hands looked lovely too, Hiro thought dazedly as he stood at the edge of the property, drinking her in. She had a delicate bone structure; high cheekbones, a slightly stubborn chin, and familiar wide green eyes. Her eyes widened even more when she noticed their visitor, and a welcoming smile spread across her face.
Hiro had to mentally slap himself and remind himself he was in love with Chiyo. At least he was a few minutes ago.
"Chiyomi-chan!" He exclaimed softly. "I see beauty runs in your family. Is this your older sister?" He asked as greeting, smiling as he slowly approached the woman.
The woman laughed, then swooped down and picked up the giggling Chiyomi, pressing their cheeks together. "Awe, what a charmer! I'm not her sister, silly, I'm her mother!"
Hiro stiffened slightly, staring at her in disbelief. It wasn't that it was odd for a woman to have children young, but she just oozed such fragile beauty and untouched innocence that it didn't seem possible. That, and she left her child to roam around the forest so she could get 'punished.'
He cleared his throat. "Erm, sorry, my name is Sugisaki Hiro, I met little Chiyomi-chan by the lake and I-"
"Chiyomi!" The woman cut him off (rudely, if he did say so himself,) but he had to blink as she scowled down at the little girl grinning unrepentantly up at her, and just as quickly that air of delicate beauty disappeared and he felt like he was looking at a completely different woman. She propped her hands on her hips and glared even more fiercely down at the unaffected child. "What did I tell you about going to the lake by yourself? Your father's going to be mad at you when he gets home!"
The child laughed. "No, he won't! He'll get mad at you because you let me!"
The woman swatted the child's butt as she ran past, yelling, "Bring out some tea! Little brat," she muttered as she turned back to Hiro. She smiled again. "I'm sorry, Sugisaki-san, my name is Shiina Yuya. Thank you for watching out for my little Chiyomi."
Hiro smiled weakly, unable to yell at her like he had planned when he first spotted Chiyomi alone. "It's no problem. She had said you and your husband were, er, busy. I didn't think it was very safe for her to be wandering around by herself."
Yuya hummed a little but didn't seem to hear the rebuke in his voice, instead turning and walking towards the veranda. "Please have a seat while Chiyomi brings tea. Where are you traveling to, if I may ask? We don't exactly get a lot of visitors up here."
"Well, it's stupid." He admitted, a little embarrassed. But what else could he tell her but the truth? It wasn't as if he could just say he wanted to enjoy a bit of camping before going home. He was at least two days away from any civilization, and one wouldn't come all the way up here unless for a good reason. "You see, my wife has this crazy notion in her head that if I come up here our marriage will suddenly be saved."
Yuya frowned at him, absently stroking a hand over her daughters hair when she came out with a tray of tea. "What do you mean?" She asked as she poured some in a small china cup.
He felt ridiculous telling his story while holding a cup smaller than his fist, but the china was obviously imported and something she must reserve for guests, and something she obviously took pride in presenting. He took a sip and sighed when warmth flooded him, and only answered when he drained his cup. "Well, there's supposedly some Love Doctor up here that's supposed to straighten men up and send them packing after a month. My wife seems to think I need to be reformed."
The woman's brow twitched. "The Love… Doctor?"
He sighed miserably. "I know, ridiculous, right? Apparently she's nine times ugly and has the patience of a saint and the will of Buddha himself. Or something. Rumor has it she's an old crone that used to live with the most dangerous man in Japan, but then he died and she retreated up into the mountains to live in peace. Though half of the men in town say she's probably a crazy hag, the women swear by her."
"A crazy… hag?" She said through gritted teeth.
Hiro nodded affirmatively. "Yup. There was a man in the village a few weeks ago saying that if we paid a thousand ryo we'd get room and board for a month. Said she was the ugliest thing he'd ever seen, but she'd straighten men out in jiffy as long as we had the money."
Chiyomi had her mouth covered with both hands in an effort to smother her giggles, and Yuya was beat red and looked very, very furious. Hiro widened his eyes, just now noticing her narrowed eyes, clenched fists, and furious expression. He wondered dazedly why he ever thought her delicate.
Especially when she muttered, "I'm gonna kill him. I'm gonna cut his balls off with a rusty knife and feed it to the bears!"
Even as Hiro blanched and scooted several inches discreetly away from her, Chiyomi gasped. "Mama! Daddy says you aren't supposed to talk about his privates like that!"
"Well, Daddy's not here, is he?" She snapped, one arm rolling up her sleeve while she flexed her muscles and looked as if she were about to jump someone. "That idiot! What the hell was he thinking? What is he, a scam artist now? We aren't that low on sake! Geez!"
"He did say one thousand ryo, Mama." The little girl pointed out, calmly drinking a sip of tea before pouring their guest another cup. "One thousand ryo."
Yuya paused, her eyes narrowed at the path leading up to the house, before she slowly sat back down on her heels. She nodded once, a little grudgingly. "At least he's good for something."
"Um… Excuse me?" Hiro ventured weakly, raising his hand a bit to get her attention.
Yuya suddenly turned to him, the fire in her eyes still burning just as strongly, a scowl turning the corners of her pretty mouth upside down. "All right. One month with the Love Doctor, bub. If you have a thousand ryo, I'd like to see it."
Hiro laughed weakly. "You've got to be kidding me, right?"
"Oh, no," Chiyomi reassured him. "Daddy says Mommy has a horrible sense of humor. I don't think she's joking."
A flick to her daughters nose had the little girl giggling. "Who's side are you on?" Yuya demanded of the child. "Girls have to stick together, you remember that!"
She turned back to Hiro, her hand held out palm up, a mercenary gleam in her eyes. "Pay up, bub, or get off my mountain."
Chiyomi's eyes were wide, but, Hiro noted distantly, they were filled with delight. At least someone found amusement in this situation. "Is Daddy in trouble? Is he going to get punished too?"
"You bet your ass he is," Yuya sniffed as she started counting the money he handed her. "Only this time, he's not going to like it!"
Hiro could only laugh; awkwardly, faintly, and wondered if he just stepped into a mad house.