So sorry I haven't updated in so long! I've had dance shows and sixth form open evenings and other stuff to deal with for a while but most of it's over now so I've found time to write this.

It's an extra-long chapter to make up for my absence!

Also, this will be the second to last chapter on the cruise. So after the next chapter, we're back home, and back to drama…Haha

InsanityTheatrePro Update: We have a lot of new stuff coming up for our YouTube cosplay channel! Me and Malaki (for those of you who have already seen any of our videos) are filming three different things this weekend, including a Halloween special.

Enjoy!

'Oh my lord…' I sat down at the table with a huff, setting my tray down slightly louder than was polite.

Hatori raised an eyebrow. 'Not a promising selection? Let me guess, was it the eggs or the fruit that didn't suit your needs this morning?' he chuckled and sipped at his coffee. 'Here,' he pushed a similar mug towards me. 'I got you some green tea.'

'Thanks.' I took the mug and gently blew across the rim before setting it down again. 'You know what really bugs me?'

'What?' Hatori seemed disinterested but wasn't impolite enough to say so.

'That you have to ask for an omelette. Ya know? You have to physically ask for one.' I made gestures with my hands. 'It's ridiculous! Why not just serve them like you do the potatoes? Or the bacon? What's wrong with an omelette that it can't just sit happily next to the rest? Does it offend them? Is that it? Oh, maybe omelettes are bullies and this is a friendly cruise-line who doesn't encourage bullying and bad behaviour!' I huffed again and sat back into my chair, looking out the window at the ocean…well…actually, I was looking at a beautiful array of multi-coloured factories and warehouses. We were docked in France, or rather, a French port. It seemed it was mainly used for transporting heavy loads onto cargo ships, not satisfying the needs of a few tourists with sun-burn and khaki shorts.

Hatori just laughed lightly and sipped his drink again. 'So you're not eating this morning?'

'Huh! You can talk Mister! You haven't eaten a damn thing for breakfast all week!' I raised both eyebrows. 'It's really a bad example to be setting, especially as a doctor.' I tore my croissant in half and began to spread butter over it.

'Mhmm…is that so?' Hatori answered vaguely, then nodded to my plateful of pastries. 'You seem hungry this morning.'

'Hey, don't discriminate, I'm suffering omelette deprivation here.' I bit into my croissant and chewed purposefully.

'You know what happens don't you? When you eat too much?' he took on the same tone I was using just a few minutes before and I rolled my eyes. 'You get a fat stomach.' He reached under the table and prodded me. It made me jump out of my skin and I clasped a hand over my mouth to stop myself from yelping loudly and ruining the surrounding passengers breakfast.

Once I'd collected myself again, I thought it polite to whisper my next sentence.

'I'm grateful for the demonstration of the exact location of the fat on my anatomy…' I cleared my throat awkwardly. 'But that wasn't quite my stomach.'

I just had time to notice the tinge of pink colour his cheeks slightly before my attention was stolen by a delighted sounding shriek of 'Akane! Ha'ri!' from across the restaurant.

I whipped my head round to see Aya leaping past tables with his arms outstretched.

'Aya!' I exclaimed. 'Have you seen the wonderful views of France so far?' I gestured to the cranes and docks outside the window.

'Ah my dear Akane, I am yet to go exploring! I've decided to have breakfast on land this morning!' he completely misunderstood my sarcastic comment and swung his arms about to reiterate his words.

Hatori coughed. 'Then why're you here?' he looked around at the very-much-packed restaurant.

'Oh! I just came to find you both of course! Shigure has informed me of the delightful news!' he grinned and I felt a sudden misty hate fill my chest. That damn canine…what did I tell him?(!)

'That wasn't his job to do so, Aya.' Hatori sounded a little miffed too.

'Oh that doesn't matter! I'm happy for you both, truly I am!' he span in a fluttery circle before clasping his hands to his chest. 'I can think of no better woman for you Ha'ri!' he sang and then bounded off. 'Till later my sweets!' And he was gone.

There was a moment of annoyed silence before Hatori picked up his mug and sipped at it again. 'It's cold. I'll get another one, do you want anything else?' he looked over at me once he was stood up again.

I was staring out the window, biting my thumbnail to avoid displaying my emotions in the middle of the breakfast scene.

'Akane,' Hatori spoke softer so not to be heard by the surrounding passengers. 'Don't let Shigure get to you. He's trying to wind us up by doing the exact opposite of what you said. He's an idiot. But you knew that.' I stayed staring but nodded my head ever so slightly.

When I finally turned around he was gone, along with my own mug.

~xxx~

'Ninety seven, ninety eight, ninety nine, one hundred, one hundred and one…'

I was laid on my back on Hatori's bed, counting the soft swirls of paint on the ceiling above me. I was pointing at each one with my arm but after a while I began to ache so I let it drop back down, thus my counting ceased.

'Akane?' I heard Hatori call from the bathroom. What did he need me for?

'Yes?' I called back, moving to sit up with a puzzled frown.

'Could I borrow you for a second?' he called again.

I frowned deeper and got up. What was he doing that needed my help? In the bathroom of all places?

When I turned the corner, I found that he wasn't in the bathroom but stood outside it, lifting two dinner jackets up and examining them.

'Which one's better?' he lowered them and met my eyes. I grinned back and stepped closer to him, without taking my eyes from his, I lifted both hangers out of his hands and dropped them behind me.

'This one.' I said thickly and my fingers began slowly working at his shirt buttons. He smirked and shook his head.

'So you're saying you want me to attend the formal evening shirtless?' he raised an eyebrow and I suddenly dropped my hands, a feeling of dread circling me.

'Formal evening?' I choked. 'When was this decided?'

He chuckled, tucking a strand of hair behind my ear. 'It was noted on the cabin newsletter this morning. Sorry, I should have told you.'

'Well, do we have to attend?' I asked desperately.

'It's not a matter of attending, its more like a rule. If you leave your cabin at all after 6pm, you have to be dressed formally.' He then moved and pulled me towards him by my waist. 'But we don't have to leave the cabin.'

I smiled. He had a good point.

~xxx~

'No, throw it properly. C'mon, I can easily catch it!' I exclaimed, bouncing up and down eagerly. Hatori and I were sat across from each other on his bed, the moon-shaped bowl sat between us. We were playing Mouth Catch. He threw a sweet and I had to catch it in my mouth.

'You know this is such a choking hazard…' he said under his breath.

'C'mon! I'll be fine, just throw one!' I was happy that we didn't have to attend the formal evening. I hated fake civil behaviour and courteous manners. They annoyed me, and besides, Hatori didn't seem that bothered about missing it anyway.

I opened my mouth to catch the sweet and I landed perfectly on my tongue. 'See?' I said. 'Easy.'

'Yes well…I had my share of sweets for the day. Why don't you put the rest in your bag and take them home for Momiji?' he suggested and I nodded.

'Okay, so what now?' I slumped my shoulders and then huffed, falling back and dropping my upper body off the bed upside down.

Hatori coughed. 'What are you doing?'

I paused in thought, coming up with something clever. 'I'm becoming smarter.'

'Becoming smarter?' Hatori chuckled softly. It never occurred to me before but I bet he sits sometimes and thinks, 'She's a lunatic, why is she such a lunatic?'

'Yes, because more blood is reaching my head, so more oxygen is reaching my head and so my brain will start to function better.' I replied simply.

'Or get a headache, whichever comes first.' He said knowingly. 'I'd bet on the former though.' H reached forward and pulled me upright by my wrist. I felt my face drain back to its original colour and a soft pounding in my head began to cease.

'I'm bored now…' I huff and fold my fingers in my lap.

'Well would you prefer to go out to the formal evening instead then?' he offers.

'No…I told you. I don't like events like that. They annoy me.' I was almost whining at him.

'Why not? I've never seen you in a proper dress.' He said darkly. It made my neck and shoulders shiver and I looked at him.

'And you probably never will too. I only wear dresses if it's vitally important that I have to.' I raised my eyebrows and held my head snootily in the air.

'Shame that.' He got up and disappeared round the corner towards the bathroom.

'Where are you going?' I asked, watching him disappear.

'Just to my bag, I have a pad of paper in there I can use.' I heard him rummaging around in his bag for a minute or so before reappearing again.

'What do you want paper for?' I asked as he sat down again.

'Right, list some examples.' He said shortly 'Go on.' He nodded and lifted his pen, poised to write.

'Examples of what?' I asked, frowning at his paper I tried to decipher what the hell he was actually doing with it.

He sighed, 'Of when it's vitally important.'

'Oh,' I realised what he was asking. 'Okay, well um…funerals, special birthday events and…'

Hatori frowned in thought too. 'How about weddings?' he suggested and I look up.

'Ah! Yes, but only if I have to. For instance, if I can easily get away with wearing smart trousers and a suitable top, I will. Only if I feel a dress is essential do I wear one. And even then I still don't like it.'

'Well, what if we changed the colour? Or style?' he was beginning to sound like a personal stylist and I frowned suspiciously at him.

'Okay…well normally I'd wear a simply colour. Patterns and frills are a definite no.'

'How about…a simpler colour?' he jotted something down but when I craned my neck to see he quickly snatched it out of view.

'Like what?' I asked, focussing on trying to work out his real intent on asking me these awkward questions.

He thought for a moment, frowning a frown that made his mouth twitch sideways.

I waited, patiently yet my crossed legs bounced with anticipation.

'I can come up with two…' he said finally. 'Either pale blue, to contrast with your eyes.' He said first and I still sat waiting for the second. 'Or white.' He said after another slight pause.

'White?' I asked, confused again. 'Why white then?'

He doesn't reply.

'You said a reason for the blue one Hatori, what about the white one?'

'You'll work it out.' He smiled knowingly and got up again, expectedly going to put his paper away again. I sat there in a cloudy bubble of confusion.

How was I supposed to work it out?

He'd said, 'When did I wear a dress' I'd said 'funerals, birthdays and…' but I couldn't think of any more so he'd suggested…

Oh my onigiri….

An unusual feeling settled in my stomach and chest, a smile trying to tug at my lips but my head not allowing it to.

He'd suggested weddings and then said a dress of either blue or white colour.

Did this mean…?

No, he wouldn't just leave me to work it out like that would he?

Then again, that is something he'd find amusement in…

But how did he…?

And when did he decide…?

I flopped back onto the bed, my head spinning and my mind fuzzy.

'Hatori?' I called out.

'Yes Akane?' I heard from round the corner. I could hear the playfulness in his voice. It only made me more confused though.

'Do we have a fridge in here?'

'Yes, why?'

'Does it have alcohol in it?'

Cliffhanger! Sorry…I know some people hate those, me included! I just thought it needed a little suspense. =)

So, go check out InsanityTheatrePro on YouTube if you haven't already! Oh! And soon there will be a new series of episodes, all featuring Akane, Hatori, Shigure and Ayame!

Thanks for reading, please review and ask any questions! =)

Ciao

~sparrowismyhummingbird~