Disclaimer: I do not own Fruits Basket
Forgive, Never Forget
For Peace Light Victory
Tohru tapped her fingers against the table and looked out the window anxiously. She looked amid the crowds of people waiting for her to arrive, she had been given a picture of her which was passed onto her from her boyfriend, to Yuki then to herself. She remembered when she first took that photo and looked down at that smiling, happy girl. It had been taken recently, she could tell since it seemed so shiny, bright and new. Her boyfriend was there too and told her that it was such a beautiful day when she stepped out the door of that very day and he couldn't resist taking a photo since the moment she walked out the door she looked so beautiful. Tohru listened to this little explanation knowing that it was filled with so much love and affection and was glad that she found someone to love her in the same way she had found Kyo. She could see from the look in his eyes that he would never want any harm to come to her and that he wanted to be there for her as much as he would always hope that she would be there for him when she was needed more than anyone. She was happy for her.
Even though she should have brought the picture, she recalled the picture from her memory, with that being her only option since she had left it at home resulting in another mid-mission crisis where her own boyfriend had to calm her down and said that he would give her a signal when she would arrive. It seemed to be the only option left, (even though Tohru didn't know this but Kyo took this option reluctantly since she didn't know how to do subtle well and that was more than half the battle of making sure that a plan involving a signal went successfully). Tohru wanted to talk to her alone since she would only presume that she and Tohru would be talking alone. It only seemed fair. She was so scared right now so she couldn't even begin to imagine how scared she would be right now. They were both scared and this was both something which had happened to them. And as selfish as it sounded, it would only ever concern them. This was something which they had to talk out to themselves and then save each other from the wreck. Also, she didn't what her to feel uncomfortable. She wanted her to know that she didn't blame her. She never did, her mother would never have wanted her to blame anyone for this, especially if they had also lost someone in this accident. It would only be hypocritical of her to hate someone so much for mourning for the same reason she was.
~ (***) ~
Komaki didn't know what to expect from Tohru Honda, she knew what she wanted from her but there was no point in her dwelling on that because no one ever got what they wanted in this world. If that was the case, her father wouldn't have died, Kakeru wouldn't have gone to the funeral of Kyoko Honda and scorned her daughter for mourning for the same reason she still was. You could never get what you want, eventually you could only be happy once you started striving for what you needed. She was just scared that what Tohru Honda was going to do, give or say to her would only either verify what she believed or what Kakeru still thought. She loved him more than anything but sometimes he frightened her with how much he loved her. It was no excuse to dismiss another persons reason for suffering without asking for it. She couldn't believe how nervous she was being. Her hands were shaking and she knew why she just simply couldn't believe she was being this nervous because there was a part of her, maybe her reason which was telling her that there was no reason to be nervous. That once she went everything was going to be okay afterwards. She knew that.
She was looking around for everything twice to make sure she hadn't mislaid anything or forgotten anything for her to take with her. Her boyfriend watched her with a hint of amusement and decided against scolding him for that. She had enough to worry about without him being childish and annoying as he usually was. She knew he was just doing it out of affection but it never meant that it gave him license to be annoying at the most inappropriate and most stressful of times. Kakeru agreed to go with her since she thought it would be easier for her, although she beginning to question the logic in that judgement. He said that he knew she needed him and his support. He was always overly confident like that but she knew today there was another reason for him to be like his. He really knew that she needed him and that this was something which she needed to do for a long time. She had no idea why both of them had put it off for so long, now that she knew they had a mutual friend. It was fear rather than anything else. Even though none of them had any right to decide who had suffered the most out of this whole ordeal but there was almost like this gaping, black void between the two of them and they were both afraid to jump despite what was waiting for them at the bottom of it.
~ (***) ~
She remembered that picture. She saw that she was smiling. That was the important thing. She looked happy. She had never met this girl, she had never known her but she always knew that she wanted nothing but happiness for her. She just wanted her to be able to go on remembering her father and knowing that she still had a chance for happiness because she knew she deserved it. She glanced out the window to see if she could catch a glimpse of her walking towards the cafe with the same smile on her face. She was nervous. Of course she was nervous, she was about to meet the girl whose father died because of the accident which brought all their lives to a halt. She remembered the moment when instead of her mother walking through the door it was an officer to tell her that her mother had died. She found it so strange but she never felt so alone in all her life. She wasn't sad because her mother was gone but she was sad because someone else had lost someone they loved as well. She couldn't help but thinking about that and wonder how they were feeling, were they alone or did they have someone to hug, to lean on their shoulder and cry without feeling bad? When she found the Sohma's she had never felt more lucky in her life to find a group of people who were willing to look after and comfort her without judging her at the same time.
It made it easier to find someone she loved who knew how much it hurt to lose someone you loved but felt you could have given so much more to. She could have made her proud and seen her graduate. Kyo could have proved to his mother that he wasn't a monster, but neither of their mothers lived to see that day. Or maybe they did. She lost her mother as a result of this terrible event but she wasn't going to blame her for what happened to them either. That would be just selfish of her since Komaki could just as easily blame her for what had happened to their parents as she could. There was no point to it. It was an accident, an unfortunate accident. She glanced up and caught Kyo's gaze through the glass he had his eyes cast to the ground for a moment but then he finally looked up when he felt someone's eyes on him and knowing that it was hers, he smiled. He smiled in the same way which told her that he was never going to leave her, that they would always be together, that they would always need one another. It was almost as if they were a part of one another now. They had spent so much time trying to find a way to explain, to find the courage to actually tell one another how they felt about the other, it built up so much that is slowly reach out between the two of them like a bridge long before they both realised that their feelings were returned to one another.
I just hope everythings going to be okay...
She began to play with her nails for a bit, it started being a habit of hers of late when she was nervous. She continued to look out into thin air until something caught her attention from the corner of her eye and saw her boyfriend repeating the signal manically over and over again. She frowned, wondering if this was meant to meaning something else. Then she noticed a familiar face walking into the cafe and a few seconds later realise why Kyo was behaving so strangely...She was so nervous herself that she jumped out of her chair making it fall back against someone who was sitting behind her.
"Oh I'm so sorry!" She practically screamed.
"Oh let me help you!" Komaki cried helping her clean up the mess.
(Meanwhile the boyfriends were waiting outside watching this scene with a lot of dismay and worry). After they were finally done with that task they finally sat down with a lot of relief and tiredness of their faces.
"So-" They both began in unison.
"No you should go first." Tohru offered.
"No please I insist." Komaki assured her.
"No really I don't mind-" Tohru replied worriedly.
Unbeknown to them Kyo made his way over them on the first sign that the conversation was going anywhere for the mere reason that they're personalities were similar enough for them to create a stalemate between where they were and continuing the conversation itself.
"You were the one who called me-" Komaki insisted.
"It's only because I'm about to leave soon and I might be able to-" Tohru began apologetically.
"WILL ONE OF YOU PLEASE SAY SOMETHING!" Kyo screamed over them.
"Kyo!" Tohru screamed.
She couldn't believe how he could have just appeared over them like that, then again he was training really hard at the moment so this must have been a mere sign that he had done well to sneak up on them and get there fast enough to know what was going on at that moment.
"Dude that is not cool!" Kakeru scolded. "The girls here are trying to have a heart to heart."
Tohru also jumped at the realisation of another presence along with that presence's girlfriend scolding him with a punch in the face.
"Well they're struggling to get even a word out since they're so damn-"
"So what do you do?" Tohru asked Komaki hurriedly.
"Oh I run my father's business. What about you?"
"Well I've worked as a cleaner but I really its just to help with finances and such. I probably will have to do more of it when I leave with Kyo while he travels to different dojos to train. Maybe one day when they're more stable I might just stay at home-"
Kyo suddenly jumped into the conversation hurriedly. "But that doesn't mean I don't want her to have a career."
"No, Kyo! It's okay. I don't mind it! I like doing cleaning, washing, cooking. I don't mind that because I know its what I'm good at...It's what makes me happy."
Komaki watched the scene with a small smile on her face. She had been sitting there for long enough for Tohru to stop and notice the expression on her face. It was just that look which made her stop talking and think for a moment. When Tohru finally noticed there was something about it which made her stop for a second, there was something familiar about it, maybe that was the way that she was smiling in the photo. There was something else which was telling her something else. It almost felt like she was looking into a mirror. She didn't know why but there was something about that smile which made her feel...It didn't make her feel anything. It didn't mean that she felt nothing from it, she wasn't implying that she was emotionless. She just didn't feel anything but it was more about realisation. Maybe it was more about what she knew Komaki was feeling at that moment as she watched her talk to Kyo the way that she did. It almost made Komaki seem empathetic to this situation or to how she felt about Kyo. She glanced at her boyfriend and had another thought. Maybe she had a similar relationship with her boyfriend as she did with Kyo. There was something in that small smile which made her wonder whether there was anything remotely different between her and Komaki...
~ (***) ~
She noticed that Tohru was looking at her strangely and she knew it was likely because she had noticed the look on her face. Sometimes, Kakeru had told her that anyone could read her like a book but then she didn't mind that. She didn't like to create misunderstanding so she thought it a good thing that people would be able to read something as enigmatic as an expression on someone's face. As she watched Tohru Honda proclaim her love in such simple terms Komaki couldn't help but suddenly feel like she knew her already. She knew what it was like to love someone just as simply as that. She did mind sometimes when Kakeru took his over-protectiveness too far and did things which she didn't really understand but she couldn't imagine not being with him. She just wanted to be with him to the best capacity as she could and she wanted to be there for him when he was going to have to find his feet. There was a sense of them both being the sisters they never had. Almost like soul-mates but not on a romantic level but more in the sense of two friends who understood one another more than they thought they could ever understand another being or be understood by another person. Maybe that was a good sign...
~ (***) ~
Tohru was relieved after their boyfriends finally decided to leave them to it. She knew she had to get through this alone and she appreciated that her boyfriend was just being concerned but she had to learn sometimes to do things herself. It was how she learned to cook, clean and all the other household tasks she was able to do. Even though sometimes it was lonely there was always that assurance that she would be able to rely on the fact that there would always be someone to come home to greet her. She knew now that she had Kyo that there was no longer a reason to fear that.
"It's difficult isn't it?" Komaki asked carefully. "It's difficult to go on without them. I used to feel so grateful for the fact that I had Kakeru but sometimes I wonder what it would be like to have my father still here..."
Tohru smiled not being able to help but understand what she was trying to say. She knew what it felt like to have regrets even though you were happy at the same time. You couldn't help but wonder what it would be like if her mother was here. Then again if her mother hadn't died she wouldn't have met the Sohma's but then again that was never a good thing to wish for or be grateful for. All she could do was accept what had passed and be grateful for what you were given. That was all you could do when you had no control over who went or who stays.
"Yes. We just have the life as it comes to us I suppose." She decided. "That's how Kyo and I take it. We're just grateful to have met one another. I lost my father many years ago when I was a child and I remember my mother being so sad over it...I almost felt like I was losing her. Then when I did I felt as if my father had taken her away from me...Sometimes I felt like it was my fault. I always bid my mother goodbye every single day but that day I had overslept and I wasn't able to wish her a good day and to be safe...But then I met Kyo and then gradually began to become more and more happy again. He knew what it was like to blame yourself for something which is out of your control. His mother...took her own life and her father blamed him for it...for a time he had blamed himself for it. So I suppose it helps when you're with someone who understands that pain..."
"Or with someone who wants to protect you." Komaki offered.
Tohru seemed to look surprised at this but she also seemed to be considering this as a possibility as well. Of course Kyo always wanted to protect her. He had told her once of the promise he made to her mother to always protect her no matter what, that she had pledged him to this promise one day. She could tell from the expression on his face when they were travelling around that he always had that look on her face, to tell her to be safe or if not he would always be there to protect her.
"Yes, I suppose Kyo can be like that at times."
"Look at us." Komaki giggled. "We're both so alike and we also have the same kind of boyfriends as well. We're like two peas in a pod."
Komaki seemed to smile in the same way Tohru did when she made some revelation and for a moment her mind seemed to empty itself of everything that was inside. It was another reflective moment as some people liked to call it. From the moment when she and Komaki started to talk she felt like she was talking to another version of herself, or even as if she was looking into a mirror. Tohru had a blank expression on her face when she first said it but then slowly a smile crossed her lips and found that she liked the expression even though she could never recall actually using the expression at all. She was sure for a moment that Komaki would have wondered if she said something out of turn. She was sure that she would if she was her. Sometimes she had to be so mindful of what she said since sometimes when people went quiet it meant that she said something that actually hurt them despite the fact that they insisted they weren't offended. So she always made sure that she made some response whenever someone said something instead they thought the same thing from her own silence. She always seemed to go quiet when someone said something profound or something she understood. She was always the one to use such expressions as well.
Some people, she had hoped, weren't tired of them but she always thought that food was a simple enough subject for everyone to understand so therefore if she had to try and find a way to make something she was trying to put across easier to understand she always referred to expressions or metaphors including food. People always understood food since everyone had a use for it or everyone at least had the same idea as to what something tasted like or its food group, that was the only reason why she thought it logical to draw on such analogies. So the moment Komaki said this it almost seemed like she was speaking the same language as her when up to this point what everyone else was saying almost seemed like gibberish. Although she had to admit Yuki seemed to clever sometimes he said things which she simply couldn't understand and then there was Kyo who seemed so mysterious sometimes and seemed to know about things she couldn't even begin to comprehend. She didn't mind though. Just as long as it came to food it was fine.
Tohru smiled at the expression and nodded. "Yes. I suppose we are aren't we?"
~ (***) ~
It was strange, as an only child Komaki had gotten used to the fact that most of the time she was going to be alone and that there was no point in going after something that you didn't have but for some reason now she felt like she really had missed out on something. This was another similarity that she and Tohru Honda shared. She had heard that most only children were full of themselves, or ones with older siblings which had long left hope by the time they could speak or walk adequately for schooling. Although, she had hoped that she was nothing like that but she knew that she did conform to this stereotype in one respect: she always felt lonely. She wasn't sure whether it was the same for Tohru she seemed to have so many friends and she didn't seem to need to have company. She didn't mean that she wasn't deserving of the friends that she had but there was something about her which came across as someone who was grateful as well as being content. She didn't look like she was lonely any more. She felt that way the moment when Kakeru made his feelings known to her. For a long time they both loved one another from afar without realising that they actually loved one another. The moment that happened was the moment when she felt more lucky than anyone else in the world. She could see that Tohru had that now. Or that for a long time.
There was something about this moment which told her that this was something which she had been waiting for, deep down, for a long time. She knew it was all well to find someone to love but it was another to find someone to actually understand you, to see things in the same way that you saw things. She had never felt so lucky in her entire life but then again after you been through such turmoil you deserved a little peace in the heart. For some reason the thought occurred to her, that if she was ever to have a sister, she would be like Tohru. She never thought about what her 'imaginary' sister would be like. But that thought suddenly occurred to her the moment she met Tohru. After speaking with Tohru for a while Komaki was becoming increasingly sure that everything was going to be okay. She knew now that the greatest fear inside her was slowly beginning to disappear inside her. She was sure now that she was going to be more than her friend since she had no reason to hate her. In fact, she was beginning to wonder whether that was the real reason as to why she was there. She thought for a moment that perhaps she was here because they weren't here to forgive one another but perhaps to finally acquaint one another and to acknowledge that they both existed, that there was the possibility that they could be friends, that they were both still here...
~ (***) ~
Tohru felt like she had been there for a long time twiddling her thumbs and then something occurred her. Something which she knew was going to be able to settle things between both of them. She knew that some people would think it insensitive but it was going to be the only way for them to clear all the guilt if there was any between them. She knew it would be painful but she hoped that Komaki would understand.
"Komaki. I think there's somewhere we both need to go...and I hope you don't think me forward for doing this either but I think this is something we both have to do. I know this will probably be painful for the both of us but I really think we need to-"
"Where is it you want to go?" She asked politely.
Tohru didn't answer her, she simply got up from her chair, picked her up her things and walked out. Komaki went hurriedly after her. She was wondering whether Tohru Honda was feeling well or whether there was something which she felt like she had to do. Tohru could tell from the expression on her face.
"Tohru if you don't want to go there. It's fine we don't have to-"
"But we have to. I'm sorry for sounding rude or too forward about this but I think we both really need to go to this place, even if it's painful, I just think its going to be the only way to end this. I do really want to be your friend, I don't think I've met someone who's been able to understand me so well and I've been able to be so certain of something so quickly. I mean, that's got to be a sign right?"
She couldn't even believe she was saying these things out loud herself. She never talked like this. She was always so hesitant about how she felt but now she was so sure about what she was doing and that it was going to make everything okay that she was finally about to say one certain thing out loud. She was talking in a rhetorical fashion but she was also more than certain than she ever had been before besides when she knew she was in love with Kyo. Tohru looked back at Komaki and saw that she looked a little worried but she knew she was going to go along with this. She knew that look before for the same reason she felt like she had met her other self on so many occasions with this girl. It was so strange when you finally discovered something you should have known all along, or for all this time when you knew about another persons existence. She didn't know what it was which was preventing them from getting to know one another. Perhaps it was fear. It was the fear of rejection which probably prevented her from approaching Komaki before. The strangest thing of all was this was something which spawned out of her greatest sadness which still seemed to hang over her head. In fact, it was only sadness and loss which connected them to one another. Tohru didn't know much about the world but she knew that this could be the saddest of reasons to be connected to someone.
Her mother's death had led her to having to live in a tent and then she had been led to the Sohma family which led her back to Kyo and then it led her back to where she felt she should have been all along. Even though you should never wish for the death of a loved one but even in this madness and death it had given birth to something she never thought she would be able to have before. She was going to admit to it, she was happy with her mother and she was now happy with Kyo and the Sohma's. But there was no way she was going to begin to compare those two happinesses because that would just be selfish. Just as it was selfish to see her father as a villain when it was just because her mother loved him so much. She understood that now that she had found someone whom she loved as much as he loved her. She knew what it was like to not want to ever be apart from them and to give them everything you could give them, or perhaps even more than that. She knew her mother loved her so much that she could imagine how painful it was to feel that pull between her love for Tohru and her love for Katsuya. She didn't even want to think about the day when she would give birth to their child or first child. She didn't want to wonder what it would be like to have to choose between the two people you love merely because you can't help it.
She glanced over her shoulder and saw the look on Komaki's face. She was still worried. Of course she was. She had no idea where she was going and she could only imagine that she was presuming the worst. She would be or maybe she would just be wondering where she was going and not even wandering anywhere near the worst case scenario. She knew she shouldn't be too assertive or too pushy if this was going to cause her too much distress but she had to be a little confident in what she was doing, for the first time she had to push herself to be as assertive as Rin, to be as strong as Kyo, to be as confident as Shigure. She had to be able to get them both through this if there was going to be any chance between the two of them. She knew what she wanted with Komaki and she had to be able to go through the follow through.
She felt someone stroking the back of her head even though she knew that she would have noticed Komaki doing something and she couldn't imagine who else would be doing this. She glanced over her shoulder finally after knowing that there was someone following her and saw Kyo and Komaki's boyfriend following them far behind. She tried to turn away pretending that she didn't know that they were there but she knew Kyo was too clever for such a trick. She smirked a little knowing that he would be too at the fact that she was trying to hide it as well. They had left them when they were content that the conversation between her and Komaki was back on track. She knew they were only there now to make sure that they were both okay. As she walked alongside Tohru took Komaki's hand on impulse as they made their way to the place where they knew they needed to be. She knew that once they were there everything was going to be okay...
~ (***) ~
They arrived at the cemetery in the end. Komaki blinked for a moment wondering if she had lost her way and had ended up in the wrong place but when she turned back to Tohru there was a reassuring smile on her lips.
"Come on." She encouraged.
She allowed herself to be dragged through the maze of gravestones and possible spirits still lingering in this sad but ever-growing place not because they would miss being alive but merely because they couldn't imagine not being far from those they love who are still living for them.
"I want to show you something...Although I think you've already seen it."
"Your mother's grave." Komaki replied.
She didn't need to second guess or make any presumptions. It was the only reason as to why they could be here. Despite it being a beautiful place it was too much associated with the darkest moments of Komaki's life so far which put her off coming here as often as she probably should.
"I don't want you to think that I'm forcing you through this I just think this is the only way that we're...that we're going to be able to move on together. I think if we confront the reason for why we're so closely connected I think it can only get better."
Komaki nodded. "I see. I see your logic but Tohru we don't have anything to say to them. I know it sounds selfish but they're no longer here. We don't need to answer to them or explain why...why we can be friends. It was an accident. It was nobodies fault...As much as I don't have more of a right to mourn than you and likewise. Isn't that enough?"
Tohru was quiet for a long time and eventually she dropped her hand from Komaki's grasp and stood in front of a particular gravestone. Komaki took a step forward and noticed that she was more quieter than she usually was and when she looked at the inscription her eyes widened and slowly drifted back to Tohru.
"Are you okay?"
Tohru suddenly back to her and gave her a beaming smile. "Of course I am. I know I should be sad but then again I know my mother is happier where she is now. I always knew that she would be happier once she was back with my father. Now I have Kyo. Even though it was lonely sometimes I always had my friends and then the Sohma's the make sure that I wasn't lonely."
"My father was never a great driver anyway." Komaki murmured. "I know I should be sad that he's gone as well but really I think it doesn't matter any more. Sure, he could have seen how happy I am now and sure he could have seen how well his business flourished but at the same time when things like this happen its always best to just let it go."