With Sneezes, Coughs and Stuffy Noses

Now here's a situation where twin telepathy would come in handy. That way he wouldn't have to ask his already sick brother to repeat everything.

Kouji M & Kouichi K

The first tip-off was that the phone hadn't been picked up on the third ring as it usually was. In fact, it hadn't been picked up at all; a dial tone punctured the ringing noise as the younger twin holding the receiver slammed it back into its cradle, before picking it up and redialling the well-memorised number of his brother's home.

The second time, it almost reached its limit of thirteen rings before someone picked up.

'It's about time you picked up,' Kouji said immediately, and to any eavesdropper who if caught would suffer a fate worse than being skinned alive, impatiently.

'I wash sheebid.'

Kouji blinked blankly at the phone. 'You wash sheep?' he repeated, realising how crazy that sounded. His brother's voice sounded weird.

'Bo.' There was a muffled cough, then silence for a minute as the receiver was abandoned, then Kouichi repeated. 'No, I was sleepid.'

'Sleepid?' Kouji parroted. 'Are you sick?'

'Ye-' Another cough. 'Yeah.'

At least that was what Kouji thought the elder twin said.

'And you were..?' he trailed off, trying to think of what his brother was trying to tell him. He assumed 'sheebid' and 'sleepid' were the same word. It just wasn't clicking for some reason.


'You already said that,' Kouji responded, much to his brother's confusion, before the meaning clicked. 'You were sleeping?'


Another pause. 'Is that a yes?' The younger twin guessed eventually.

Another 'yeb' greeted him.

Oh brother. This is going to make a conversation difficult.

'So you didn't go to school?'

'Bus seb be hob earby.'

That made no sense whatsoever. And he said as much.

More coughing and a muffled sneeze on the other end. And then Kouichi attempted to repeat his sentence. More clearly that is.

'Burse seb be hobe early.'

That wasn't a whole lot better, but he couldn't well ask his brother to repeat it a third time, especially considering the sentence was punctured with coughs…and he was still coughing.

'Your bus came early?'




'Is that a yes?'


Maybe he should just take that as a yes.

'So "bo" means no and "yeb" means some variation of yes?'

'Yeb, but dow bay bun.'

'Don't make buns?'

'Bo!' And then Kouichi repeated his previous statement.

Kouji could have sworn he had heard something to do with buns, so he tried as much, receiving another 'bo' in reply.

Okay, no buns.

'Um…maybe I'll ring later.'

'Bo, I ba-' Kouichi cut himself off with more hacking coughs, and then the receiver fell.

'Kouichi!' his brother cried in alarm, before someone else picked up the phone.

'Go back to bed.' That part was muffled, but the next wasn't. 'Kouji?'

''kaa-san? What's wrong with Kouichi?'

'Oh dear, it's just a bad case of the flu. The bug's been going around and he always gets it much worse. The nurse sent him home early.'

'Oh.' That was what Kouichi had tried to say. Of course with a blocked nose and a sore throat, it hadn't made much sense.

'What did Ni-san say about buns?'

'Huh?' there was a confused pause, before: 'I think he asked you not to make fun of the way he's talking. With the stuffed nose and all.'

'Oh.' Kouichi should really know better than need to say that. No wonder he couldn't figure it out.

Of course, if they could reach each other's minds, they wouldn't have needed to worry about that. Or if the other had a cell and they could text each other…or a computer and internet connection to email.

Considering he had been sleeping, none of that would have been much use anyway…until he woke him up.