Chapter 1 - Returning Home

. . .

The sensation was painful, yet it was a wondrous pain, one she had yearned to feel for the past year. Arms held her tightly as soft moist lips pressed against hers with a matching intensity which would broach no arguments to their needs. They, like her own, would not be denied what they truly desired. Around her the world faded away to whiteness. She knew it was there yet it was more or less background noise. Her eyes stared into the brown eyes before her with intensity that would overwhelm and devour the younger girl she held if allowed to run free. Her heart swelled with love as she saw the same desire to be overwhelmed in the eyes that gazed just as hungrily into her sapphire-blue ones.

"Onee-sama…" gasped the younger girl as their lips finally parted so that they could draw air. Onee-sama. Such a simple word, but one that to her, carried with it much more than the word's meaning. Unspoken in that one word was a promise, a dream, shared by the two of them. A dream that was created by their two hearts and one they both realized was within their grasp. All they had to do was reach out and take it. "We should probably get up from here," the brunette girl said still out of breath, though she made no effort to move from the older girl's arms.

Sachiko stared at her blankly for a long moment as the world around them finally came back into focus and she noticed people watching them intently. The Ice Princess glared at the spectators as if to say 'Yes? Is there a problem?' and they quickly went about their business. "Where?"

Yumi smiled noticing the glare directed at those watching from a discreet distance. She reminds me of Yoshino glaring at anyone who happens to get close to Rei-sama, she thought to herself enjoying the thought of her Onee-sama being possessive of her. Yumi hesitated for a long moment but finally released her possessive grip on the raven-haired girl's waist and reached over to grab hold of the wheelchair. With a mighty effort she pulled herself up into the seat and released the break lever on the chair before looking to Sachiko who stood up but made no move to help her. "Arigato for not helping me, Sachiko," she said with a small smile. "I don't think I could take it if you pitied me also," Yumi said as she lifted first one leg and set it into place and then the other leg.

"I doubt that your friends pity you, Yumi," the standing girl said "and all offers of assistance are not because they think you can't do it on your own." Sachiko didn't ask but moved behind the wheelchair and started to push it toward the exit. For the time being she decided to leave the unanswered 'Where?' unanswered. If it was up to her she would take Yumi home with her and never let the younger girl go again, but she realized that the choice wasn't hers to make. While they were together, there was still a lot they needed to discuss in detail. The road ahead would not be easy, Sachiko feared, but in the same sense she relished the challenge because the prize was a lifetime with Yumi.

Yumi thought in silence about the other girl's words as they stopped by the security checkpoint and retrieved Sachiko's missing shoes and forgotten cellphone. I think I may have done my friends a disservice, the brunette finally had to admit to herself. She had distanced herself from the other girls, Touko included, due to believing that they pitied her. "I think I've wronged them," she said to herself but loud enough for Sachiko to hear.

"Then you know what you have to do, don't you?" Sachiko asked as she started to push the chair once again. From her vantage point she couldn't see the other girl's face but she was certain there would be a multitude of emotions passing across it at the moment. They stopped at the airline counter to make arrangements for Yumi's luggage to be returned. "Yumi," Sachiko said, turning from the counter, "Should it be shipped to your parents' house?"

"No, please have it shipped directly to my address," Yumi replied and provided the airline agent with the address. Sachiko smiled at Yumi and laid one hand on her shoulder, giving it a reassuring squeeze. The older girl opened her cellphone and made a call. From what Yumi overheard she was directing the driver to come back and pick them up.

"Yumi," Sachiko said as she turned and smiled warmly at the brunette, "as it will be several days till your personal effects arrive, why don't you come and stay with me?" Yumi frowned, not sure how to tell the other girl that she didn't want to see her with Kashiwagi-san just yet, or ever. "I live alone," Sachiko added as if reading her thoughts, "at the house that my grandmother left me."

"I wouldn't be a bother?" Yumi asked, still not certain about going to the other girl's house.

"Not in the least," the older girl replied moving behind the wheelchair and starting to push it once again. "I'm free for the next several days and…" she paused for a long moment, "I want some time alone…with you," she said, glad that Yumi was looking ahead and couldn't see the blush she felt building in her cheeks. Sachiko was finding it incredibly hard to keep her hands off the girl before her.

"Then I have a better idea," Yumi countered with. "Why don't you stay with me?" Yumi could feel her own cheeks blushing slightly. "You haven't been to my apartment yet, Onee-sama, and I want you to see it," Yumi stated. "That is if you don't mind watching me unpack?" she added, realizing that the apartment wasn't really in the proper shape to entertain company at the moment. "I'm afraid that most things are boxed up at the moment."

"I would love watching you unpack as it means you're not leaving," Sachiko said sincerely, especially after how close she had come to losing the girl seated in the wheelchair. "However, as I would be imposing upon you then I insist I help with the unpacking," Sachiko finished with.

"You're going to insist on this, aren't you?" Yumi said in a resigned tone of voice as they rolled through the electric doors and out to the waiting car. Though she was thrilled with the thought of her Onee-sama staying with her, she didn't want to give into the older girl's demands too quickly.

"Yes," Sachiko sighed as she opened the rear door and positioned the wheelchair as close to the backseat as she could to allow Yumi to move herself in without help. "I'm afraid I'm going to," the raven-haired girl confirmed. Sachiko was beside herself as she had wanted to see Yumi's apartment for some time now. "I promise to try and not tell you how to redecorate even," she added with a grin.

"Then…" Yumi grunted as she heaved herself up out of the wheelchair and eased herself onto the back seat of the car, then pulled herself in by grasping the headrest of the driver's seat, "…I see I have little choice but to agree to your terms, Onee-sama." Once in, Yumi couldn't help but smile at the prospect of her Onee-sama helping her decorate.

"What a sensible girl," Sachiko said as she let the driver collapse the wheelchair and store it in the back while she slid into the back seat next to Yumi, instantly taking the younger girl's hand in hers and entwining their fingers. "My sensible girl," she added, patting their interlaced hands with her other hand lovingly.

Yumi smiled and leaned over, resting her head on the other girl's shoulder. "I think I like the sound of that," Yumi said.

"Oh?" Sachiko asked innocently with a sweet smile.

"Being yours," Yumi replied, squeezing the hand in hers tightly as the car pulled away from the curb and eased into traffic.

"Are you?" Sachiko asked in a slightly more serious tone of voice. "I think we have a great deal of things to discuss."

"Later please," Yumi asked with a frown. "We have time. Don't we, Onee-sama?"

Sachiko raised their clasped hands to her lips and kissed the back of Yumi's hand tenderly. "We have as long as you'd like," Sachiko replied, lowering their hands to her lap again.

"Then," Yumi started with, "for the next few days can we just forget the world and everything else?" the younger girl asked in a pleading tone of voice. "I…I've missed you, Sachiko," Yumi said with a year's worth of longing in her voice.

"I've missed you as well…Yumi," Sachiko replied with a sniffle as a tear dropped down onto their joined hands. "Oh my," Sachiko said and looked away embarrassed, trying to hide her tears. "Since when did I become such a crybaby?" she asked as she slipped a handkerchief from her pocket to wipe at her eyes.

Before the tears could be wiped away, Yumi reached over and gently took the other girl's chin in her hand then turned Sachiko's head so that she was looking at her, "No," she said gently yet firmly. "Don't ever again hide your feelings from me, please." Yumi stated. "If you feel like crying then we'll cry together," she continued. "If you feel like laughing then we'll laugh and if you feel like being angry then we'll yell and scream together. Whatever it is, we'll face it together, with no secrets between us and no worries about what the other may think of us."

Yumi stared deeply into the older girl's eyes to make certain that she understood. She couldn't help but to feel like the Onee-sama in this conversation but the brunette knew that if they were to have a relationship together they had to first be honest with each other. "Can you promise me that?" Sachiko sniffled and nodded slightly, too overcome with emotions to speak. Yumi smiled, leaned forward and kissed away Sachiko's tears. "I love you," she said once again, looking deeply into those perfect sapphire-blue eyes and then sitting back in her seat.

Sachiko smiled a true, genuine smile, filled with happiness that reached from her soul all the way to her heart. "I love you, my angel," she replied with such warmth in her voice. Yumi smiled contentedly as well, the first heart-warmed smile in more than a year. The two girls sat in silence the remainder of the way to Sachiko's house. Once there the older girl ran in and collected what items she would need for an extended stay with Yumi. Once done, a modest three suitcases were loaded in the back of the sedan with the wheelchair, and the raven-haired girl slipped back into the backseat and took Yumi's hand in hers once again entwining their fingers.

Yumi moved in closer to the older girl and laid her head against the shoulder next to her again. She could feel the heat from Sachiko's body next to her and she wanted to pull the other girl in till they were close enough to share one body. As that wasn't possible she settled for getting as close as she could to the older girl. Once again a comfortable silence settled around the two girls in the back seat. Suddenly, Yumi sat upright in the seat with a worried look on her face as she just realized something. "What am I going to tell my parents?"

Authors Note:

UPDAT: If you haven't read "Chasing The Dream" then I suggest you do as it explains what came before this arc.

Well, this is unexpected, honestly. I had no intention of returning to this story so soon (if ever) however, I'm away from home and I find that I need to go over the anime for character research. I own all four seasons but it's at home sadly so I can't write what I want to write. While considering this in the shower (I do all my great thinking there...doesn't everyone?) I came up with this story. Right now it is only a general outline so we'll see where the Muse runs with it. I'll say it right now, I would not expect daily updates as with the previous story, but as I have a lot of time on my hands till the 28th we'll see what happens I guess.

Edit: Special thanks to notyouradvisor for taking the time to edit this chapter after it was posted.

I hope you enjoy!

Kind Regards,

EJ Daniel

All characters within this story, unless otherwise stated are the sole property of Oyuki Konno the original writer of the Maria-sama ga Miteru light novel series.

(121514 - 2242)