AN: Vaguey related to the Valentine's Day snippet of Tales of Yue's Harem.

Mother's Day

by Shadow Crystal Mage

Disclaimer. Negima belongs to Akamatsu, I'm just paying with the characters. It's a bit early, I know, but today is always a good day to tell mom you love her.

Konoka spent her day cooking. Usually she baked something, because it could be done slowly, giving her plenty of time to think and not worry about watching what she was doing. Her hands kneaded the dough as her mind drifted back to a time before Setsuna, when she'd been taught this by a beautiful woman with a kind smile.

Her bread always tasted great, if a little salty.

Yuuna's father knew better than to try to do anything come 'The Day'. Yuuna started the morning as if possessed, cooking cleaning and behaving slightly more disturbingly close to him than usual. He'd long learned to just lock up the stuff he didn't want her to see the night before and stay in bed until she dragged him out.

Breakfast with her on 'The Day' was always intense, as if she was trying to run through an internal checklist, or like she was being watched by an especially strict boss.

It was the one day in the year Yuuna was likely to cut class. He'd long learned to make the excuses for her too. Takamichi had always understood, thank goodness, but Negi seemed t oas well.

When his own work was over, he'd pack his things and meet Yuuna. She always found the two of them together, Yuuna leaning against her gravestone while she talked. His daughter was always smiling...

"Master?" Chachamaru said, knocking on the coffin lid just once. "Do you wish me to make you tea?"

There was no answer.

She left, and the coffin stood alone in the resort for the next 24 days, filled with a little girl and her tears...

Chao wondered if they ever wondered who kept sending them the flowers every year at this time. She was a hundred years too early, but what the hell. After all, many-times-greatgrandmothers would be mothers someday too...

Hakase wasn't sure what to do about this. After all, when it happened the year Chachamaru was activated, she'd been bewildered, and figured it was a prank Chao had put her up to. The year after that though, Chao was just as bewildered as she was.

After what she'd learned about Chachamaru and her possible auto-evolution though...

Next to her, Chao just laughed and mussed her hair, to her indignant squack. "Hakase-chan, you're over-thinking it again, " she said. "Our little girl is just growing up. Now woman up and take it."

Hakase self-consciously picked up the card. It had been folded over neatly, the reproduction of a famous painting in front done in children's crayon with a laser-printer's precision. On the inside were the words, in a faintly cursive computer-perfect font, also done in crayon, "Happy Mother's day. Thank you for creating me. Chachamaru."

"P.S. When is my next maintenance appointment?"

"She tries, " Chao said, lovingly opening her own card.

"I'm uncomfortable with the implications of this being given to both of us, " Hakase said, tucking the card into her bag in her secure box, for notes that needed to survive the occasional explosion, next to tow others like it, a pressed flower, and a hermetically sealed jar containing some candy.

Chao shrugged, and mussed up her hair again. "By the way, " she asked Hakase. "Did someone send you flowers again?"

"Uncivilized monkey!" Ayaka cried.

"What did you call me?" Asuna demanded.

"Oh, is the monkey deaf as well?" Ayaka taunted, smirking.

That was when the first punch flew.

3-A watched... and stood back, letting them have their privacy. No bets were exchanged, no one egged them on.

Because Ayaka had to pay Asuna back for her little brother somehow. And if that meant she ended up needing makeup the day after, so be it. She just wished it wasn't so close to the other 'Day'...

Nekane should have known better not to expect a card from Negi that year. Of course he'd send her one. One would have thought it made her feel old, but it didn't. It just made her sad.

Negi never actually named the day. Just sent her a card telling her how much he loved her, and maybe a little gift. It was a small jewelry box this year, and looked handmade, and a treacherous part of her couldn't help wonder in amusement whether he'd joined one of the kindergarten classes for a lesson to make it.

She put the box away and just sat, staring at the card...

When Asuna saw the box, with it's mild smell of chocolate, its hand wrapped look, the mild scent of flowers, and the 'Return to sender' stamp on it, she sighed, and turned around to find Konoka, wondering if they'd need to do this on Father's Day again too...