Kso, I know it's a little early, but I'll never do it if I don't do it now. So, happy Valentines Day, loyal readers. Um and I guess all you other people too. Enjoy!
I don't like Valentines Day. I guess it's mainly because I've been alone for said holiday the past three years. I still don't get how that happened. I thought she really loved me. I guess I found out the hard way that she didn't. Although I prefer her rejecting my proposal and leaving than accepting at turning up MIA the day of the wedding. I can live with rejection. Public humiliation, not so much, but rejection's okay. It only kills you enough to leave you empty but it lets you go on living at least.
I walk into a Starbuks and order a black coffee, nothing fancy. I seat down in a seat by the window and scowl at the backwards heart with the backwards words Happy Valentines Day painted on the window. Still another three weeks people, calm down. You don't have to rub your love in my face just yet.
I start to reach into my book bag to grab my notebook. Part of my final project was to analyze a script and give a director's cut of sorts. We had to cut out scenes we didn't like and write new ones to make up for the ones we cut. It didn't do much for me; I like being involved in the filming process. The scripting couldn't hold my interest. It wasn't even my idea to become a director, not that I wasn't really excited about it once the idea was proposed to me. No, it was hers.
"Nanami," I sigh, dropping my notebook and looking at the people around me. At my mention of the name Nanami, the blonde in front of me stiffens. I can't see her face, she has her back to me, but I see a blue butterfly tattooed on her ankle and know it's her. Seriously universe? Three weeks before Valentines Day and I run into my ex-I-asked-her-to-but-she-didn't-want-to-be-fiancée? You like screwing me over, don't you?
"Nanami," I say a little louder, clearing my throat. The blonde slowly turns around and looks at me with big bleu eyes. Yup, definitely her. And she looks even better than I remember; glowing almost.
"Kaoru," she breathed. "It's been awhile." She shifted nervously in her seat.
"Do you mind if I take a seat?" I asked, gesturing to the unoccupied chair at her table.
"Not at all," she answered, pulling the chair out. I sat awkwardly beside her.
"So how have you been?" I try not to make it sound like I know that she got back in the business but it's hard. Girl used to be an escort, dates you, then becomes an escort again. How does one not take that personally?
"Um I went back to… my old job," she murmured uncomfortably. "But I quit again a few months ago."
"Oh really," I wondered. That, I hadn't heard.
"I guess my priorities shifted." She shrugs and takes a sip of her tea.
"That's cool," I murmured.
"How about you?" she asked. "You still studying?"
"Finishing up my last year," I replied.
"Oh that's right, you would be," Nanami sighed, tugging at her shirt trying to get it to stop bunching up near her midriff.
"Are you living in town?" I asked.
"I'm trying to move back this way," she sighed. "But I'm no –" the remainder of what she was going to say was cut off by a large yawn.
"Sorry, don't have as much energy as I used to," she chuckled before, not subtly might I add, resting her hand on her chest in a show of discomfort.
"Heartburn?" I wondered.
"Yeah, I thought a tea might help," he replied. "But all it's doing is making me feel queasy. I'm going to go to the washroom. It was nice catching up with you Kaoru."
She hopped off her chair and walked to the washroom, pulling her coat nervously in front of her.
I don't know, maybe she thought I was blind, or stupid or something along those lines but I wasn't. I got sighed and followed her.
I got a questioning glance from the woman coming out of the washroom as I was about to enter. I was politely informed that I was entering what was a designated area for females. She was politely informed that it wasn't nice to just assume someone was a man.
Upon entering The Woman's World, I was greeted with the sound of guts being puked up.
"Nanami," I called.
"Kaoru," she groaned from one of the stalls. "You know this is the girls' washroom, right?"
"I was looking for you," I replied.
"And you couldn't have waited for me to be done?"
"Barfing? Or hiding from me?" I wondered. I got no answer.
"Nanami, this isn't exactly something an ex-boyfriend asks an ex-girlfriend, or hell, any girl for that matter, but are you pregnant?"
"Maybe a little," she finally admitted, reluctantly.
"Alright, well here's another question that doesn't exactly roll off the tongue," I sighed. "Do you know who the father is?"
I was answered with a chorus of vomiting. The toilet flushed and a sweaty, unhappy Nanami walked over to the wall of sinks. She tuned on the water and rinsed her mouth, spiting out little pieces of half-digested food.
"Nanami," I pressed.
"No," she snapped, resentfully. There was a moment of awkward silence.
"How far along are you?" I asked finally.
"Fifteen weeks," she replied. Wow, farther along than I thought.
"Do you have anywhere to stay?" I wondered.
"I'm working on getting in apartment close to the hospital," she sighed. "But right now I'm a thirty minute train ride away."
"You can come stay with me," I said, without stopping a minute to think.
"Kaoru, I –"
"This isn't about us. After all we've been through, how it ended, I don't even know if I could go back there. This is about your baby," I said, resting a hand on her stomach. "I want you to be comfortable, Nanami. I spent five years of my life with you and I don't care if we aren't dating anymore. I still care about you and I want what's best for you."
"Do you still have our old apartment?" Nanami wondered.
"I couldn't," I replied, sighing. "After you left, I stayed with Mori and Hunny for about a month until I found a new place. There were too many memories."
"I'm sorry about what I did, Kaoru," she whimpered. "How I handled things. I sort of freaked out. I wanted to run from responsibility and attachment. Kinda came back to bite me in the ass, didn't it?" She chuckled darkly and I couldn't help but laugh myself.
"You'll be a great Mom, Nanami. And I'll help you out until you can manage on your own," I assured her.
"I feel so guilty. After everything, you still selflessly want to help me."
"Don't," I urged. "I need to help you. I couldn't live with myself if I didn't. You see, I have this thing called a conscious, which tends to keep me on the straight and narrow."
"Thank you so much, Kaoru," Nanami whispered, her eyes clouding with tears.
"It's no problem," I said, wiping away her tears with my thumbs. "I only ask that in return, should it be a boy, you name him Kaoru."
"What?" she exclaimed, head snapping up quickly.
"What? It was a joke…was it not funny?"
She laughed breezily and pulled me into a tight hug. Alright, maybe I was starting to warm up to the idea of Valentines Day.