"The taxes just keep piling up, Kouta! When are you going to ask your boss for a raise? Do you know how hard it is to live under these conditions? I swear to God, I don't even know why I should have to tell you this! Oh wait, that's right: Because it never seems to get through your thick skull!"

"Baby, I'm doing my best-"

"Well either make your best better, or get a second job, because I have needs, dammit!"

Nyu winced as she heard the dinner plate crash against the wall and shatter into pieces. She looked up to see Kouta backing out of the Maple Inn's dining room, which, with the addition of the television set, also became the ryokan's living room. He was holding his hands up and smiling nervously in a just-calm-down display. Then he turned to head into the kitchen, and his expression instantly dropped to that of misanthropic misery.

She frowned in pity, even though she didn't fully understand these situations that were seemingly becoming more frequent. "Kouta is…upset?" she sympathized.

"Yes, Nyu. Very good observation," he grumbled as he passed her. He went into the kitchen and got down a shot glass from the overhead cabinet. "Kouta is upset. Kouta is very upset. And Kouta thinks he needs some brandy to relax."

"Did you fight about money again?" Nyu asked.

"Yes. The one thing that seems to come into our house but never stays." He rummaged around for a few more minutes before standing up and staring at the shot glass. "She drank it. The alcohol. Every last drop. God damn it. I can't even have a goddamn drink in my goddamn house." He turned to look at Nyu. "She drank it all, Nyu. Can you believe that? She's drinking me out of this house." He picked up the shot glass and put it back in the cupboard. "She's drinking me out of my mind, too. I hate it. I hate her. Fuck, how I hate her."

The Diclonius blinked, worry twisting about in her mind. It didn't make sense. The couple had once been happy. But when they started dating, and tried to make Maple Inn their home…

My friend's got a girlfriend

Man he hates that bitch

He tells me every day

He says "Man I really gotta lose my chick

In the worst kind of way."

It wasn't exactly clear on why they always fought over money. Kouta said they didn't have enough because Yuka was always spending it. Yuka said they didn't have enough because Kouta wasn't making as much as he should've been and wouldn't move his lazy ass (whatever that meant) to try and make more. Not knowing where the money was disappearing to and not being any help in making more money, Nyu felt uncomfortably out of place in these arguments.

Nana had told her not to worry about it too much, as it didn't really concern them. "But if you ask me," she had whispered, "I think it's Yuka. She's spending all the money on herself. She buys things we don't need. But don't you go saying that to anyone, alright?" Nyu had promised her not to say a word.

She sits on her ass

He works his hands to the bone

To give her money every payday

But she wants more dinero just to stay at home

Well my friend, you gotta say

Everything really started to go downhill when, after the two started dating, they truly found out the cost of living. And it was expensive. Even though Mayu-chan was gone, having found her own path in life to follow, the expenditures didn't appear to go down very much. Personally, Nyu thought it was these things called "bills" and "taxes" that were the real bad guys; they were the things that Kouta and Yuka had to pay money to and were always complaining about. Instead of fighting with each other, why didn't they fight the bills and taxes?

But when she mentioned it to Kouta, he said that "demands for payment weren't the issue here" and that they "were never going to go away, so they might as well be paid on time".

I won't pay, I won't pay ya, no way

Na-na, why don't you get a job?

Say no way, say no way-a, no way

Na-na, why don't you get a job?

"Hey, Kouta…" she started to wonder.

"Yeah?"

"If Kouta and Yuka need money, but you work as hard as you can, why doesn't Yuka get a job too?" She smiled like she thought she had come up with a brilliant idea. "Then both of you will have money and you won't have to fight!"

Kouta stared at her blankly for a few seconds. Then he smiled, and started to laugh. "You're right, Nyu. You're absolutely right. That would solve our problems. Why didn't I consider that sooner?" He continued to laugh.

Nyu closed her eyes and smiled brightly, proud of herself for finding the solution.

The laughing stopped abruptly. "Oh, but wait; there's a problem."

Nyu blinked. "Huh?" she said, tilting her head.

"Yuka is a lazy-ass bitch who doesn't want to disconnect her butt from the couch except when it comes to shopping in fear that she might actually have to do something work-related and miss every program in the AM-PM schedule." He grabbed a water bottle out of the fridge and began to drink vigorously, gargling down his rage.

The red-haired girl instantly felt shame and disappointment for suggesting what was evidently a stupid idea. But then she felt something else boiling inside. Something…angry.

I guess all his money, well it isn't enough

To keep her bill collectors at bay

I guess all his money, well it isn't enough

Cause that girl's got expensive tastes

"Not fair…" she muttered under her breath.

"What?" Kouta asked, slamming the water bottle down on the counter.

"It's not fair," Nyu repeated firmly, looking at him with intense eyes. "Kouta should not have to work so hard when Yuka doesn't do anything. If you two live together, you should also work together, pay together, and be happy together. But only you work and only Yuka is happy. Not fair."

Kouta gazed at her. Putting it so plainly, yet having it be so true…

His fingers clenched around the water bottle, making the plastic crackle. "You know what? You're right. And this time I mean it. Everything you said is true. But it won't be for long. Because things are about to change. Stay here, Nyu. This'll be ugly."

He walked past her resolutely, a stern expression on his face. Nana slipped past him, walking from the other end of the hall. As she did, she felt the anger and determination stemming from him.

"What did you do?" she hissed as she approached Nyu.

Nyu smiled and held up a thumbs-up. "Nyu helped Kouta!" she proclaimed.

I won't pay, I won't pay ya, no way

Na-na, why don't you get a job?

Say no way, say no way-a, no way

Na-na, why don't you get a job?

"Hey, I was watching that!" came the shout from the dining room.

"Yeah? Well now you're watching me."

"Oh, what? You finally grew the stones to say something?"

"Actually, I have a couple of things to say. Beginning with shut the hell up."

"Why don't we go for a walk while these two settle their issues?" Nana suggested nervously, tugging Nyu along to the front entrance.

"Mm-mm," Nyu disagreed, shaking her head. She wanted to listen, to hear how the battle was going, to hear Kouta bravely standing up to his… What was that term they used? 'Lazy-ass' girlfriend. Slipping her shirt sleeve out of Nana's grip, she sank down and sat leaning against the wall, eavesdropping on the flying insults.

"Lucy!" Nana started. "You shouldn't-"

"Shhh…" Nyu motioned with her finger up to her mouth.

Well I guess it ain't easy doing nothing at all, oh yeah

But hey man free rides just don't come along

Every day

(Let me tell you 'bout my other friend now!)

Later that night, as Nyu went to bed with a sense of satisfaction, she thought about how Mayu-chan's life was going, and hoped that it was better than the relationship these two had demonstrated.

However, in actuality, over at the apartment where Mayu was living with her boyfriend, Bando, life was also very…one-sided.

"I'm sick and tired of working long hours in the bakery to come home to this!" Mayu shouted at the lazy slob on the couch.

"What?" Bando complained. "It's not that bad. Could just use a good cleaning." He turned up the volume on the television. "You should get on it."

My friend's got a boyfriend

Man she hates that dick (That's right!)

She tells me every day (Whoo! Every day now!)

He wants more dinero just to stay at home

Well my friend, you gotta say (NO! WAY!)

Mayu huffed angrily. She walked over to the television set and pressed the 'POWER' button off.

"Hey!" Bando snapped. "I-"

"It's the news. You don't give a shit about the news. You never have." She placed her hands on her hips and looked Bando straight in the eye. "Bando, I don't mind cleaning. I don't mind cooking and sewing. I don't even mind slaving over a hot stove all day long to earn the meager salary we're living off of. Those are what a good wife does. But what I do mind is having a man who used to be able to jump over bridges and fire .50 caliber rounds all day long sit on the couch and slowly turn into a sack of cold mush."

Bando stood up hastily. "If you're suggesting I've lost my physical competence-"

"I'm suggesting you get out of the house and into a business uniform, because I'm not going to be the sole working-class laborer in this relationship."

I won't pay, I won't pay ya, no way

Na-na, why don't you get a job?

Say no way, say no way-a, no way

Na-na, why don't you get a job?

Both of them stood unwavering on either side of the couch table. "I don't do uniforms," Bando growled.

"Well you didn't seem to have a problem putting on that 50-pound Special Assault Team combat armor."

"That was different! That was-"

"Following specific orders given to you by someone in a higher position of power and then executing assignments with controlled pace in planned out maneuvers? Tell me, how is that any different from receiving projects and tasks from a boss at a workplace?"

Bando frowned, realizing his excuses were cornered. At least, in the SAT unit, there had been action! At least he had been doing what he loved! But at an office? Bent over a computer until he had circuits hanging out of his nose? Fuck that!

"I'm not going to be a nutless cubicle drone," he stated with finality.

"Then get a job as a utility worker or something," Mayu countered.

"And what if I decide I don't want to get a job?"

Mayu stood thinking about this. Of course, she expected him to resist. It was only obvious that he had grown comfortable with his usual sloth routine. But she couldn't physically or linguistically force him to get a job. He was too gritty. So…perhaps…

"If you don't get a job, then you don't get any of this," she said, motioning her hands down her own body.

Bando raised an eyebrow. "Come again?"

"I know how important sex is to you. You escaped from a government facility just to save your own fucking balls. But if you want to get some action, you better get off your behind."

Her stunned boyfriend's face twitched. "But…but…" Bando started to whine.

"Nope. I've decided, and that's that."

He stood staring at her for a few more seconds. Then he let out a deep sigh, defeated. He sat back down on the couch. "Alright, fine. Where's the newspaper?"

Mayu smiled, bent over, and kissed his forehead. "Thank you sweetie, I'll go get it."

"Yeah, yeah, whatever, youlilrrrghh…" he grumbled. He made a mental note that he also kinda liked the way she talked to him in that way.

I won't give you no money, I always pay

Na-na, why don't you get a job?

Say no way, say no way-a, no way

Na-na, why don't you get a job?