Minna-san ... I'm really really sorry for the late update! I just get a new job and still trying to adapt with the new people and environment, not to mention the pile of documents that need to be done (p.s. I wrote this chapter using office computer, haha). I'll try to update on time for the next chapter (which is usually on weekend). Oh, and for the readers who also read my other story 'The Long Lost Memories', I hope you'll be patient because I'm still writing it. I'll try to post it by tomorrow or friday. Thanks again for being patient with me and please don't forget to review.
Enjoy your reading!
disclaimer: I don't own ghost hunt or any of its characters, sadly.
Chapter 4 : Family
After another long drive and chit chat with the cab driver, Mai finally arrived at Ayako and Bou-san's house (their house is huge; as expected from a famous rocker and a rich heiress). She pressed the bell and heard a woman voice through the speaker (A/N: you know the bell with camera and speaker in Japanese big houses right?).
"Ah, Mai-sama! Hold on, I'll open the door" she said.
Mai gave her a yes and waited in front of the gate; waiting for it to be opened. Not long after, a middle aged woman came out and hurriedly opened the gate for her.
"Thank you Yura-san. Is Bou-san home?" Mai asked while giving the older woman a grateful smile.
"Apparently, Takigawa-sama has an interview appointment this morning and wouldn't be back until dinner. But Ayako-sama has been waiting for you"
"Ooh ... it must be for his new album. Oh well, I guess I will stick around until dinner then. Where's Ayako?"
"Ayako-sama is in the Young Master's room. Young Master decided to be difficult today; he kept crying and throw away his food. Maybe he'll get better once he see you Mai-sama. He always been fond of you" Yura-san said and chuckled.
"Ahaha, well then I'm going to see my little brother now before Ayako get even more frustrated. See you around Yura-san!" Mai said and then heading to the room.
Once she get in front of the room she heard Ayako sighed in frustration from outside the door. She slowly opened the door and peek inside. Ayako was hovering over her three years old son who sat on the soft and fluffy carpet on the floor; both of them were staring (glaring) at each other stubbornly.
"Ahem ... may I interrupting the glaring contest?" Mai said teasingly; earning attention from both mother and son.
"Mai!" Ayako was about to hug her but she was lose to her son who already run and hugged Mai's leg.
"Nee-chan!" the little boy said happily.
He had Bou-san light brown hair and brown eyes; but his personality was absolutely come from his mother.
"Yuu-chan ... I heard you refuse to eat your food?"
"That's because mommy refuse to take me to meet you. She said you're busy Nee-chan" the little boy pouted cutely at her.
"Geez, Yuuichiro, I told you Mai would come to visit. And yet you still being difficult and throw away your food everywhere. Look, it stained the carpet!" Ayako scolded her son lightly.
Mai get down on her knee until she's on the same eyes level as the little boy.
"Yuu-chan ... You remember about what I tell you about unfortunate children right?"
"Yes ... there are not enough food for them and they often starve; that's why I shouldn't waste food. Sorry Nee-chan" Yuuichiro said.
"Hnn ... good boy. Now say sorry to mommy and promise that you would never throw your food again" Mai said gently.
Yuuichiro turn toward his mother and look at her with apologetic expression.
"Sorry mommy, I won't throw the food again" he said.
Ayako smiled at her son and took him into her embrace.
"Of course. Now be a good boy and help Yura Oba-san to clean the dining room while I talking to your Onee-chan okay?"
"Okay ..." He said with somewhat a disappointed look.
Mai understood his feelings and smiled reassuringly at him.
"I won't take long Yuu-chan. How about we play in the garden after you're done helping Yura Oba-san?" she said.
Yuuichiro's face lighten up and he nodded vigorously at his adopted sister.
"Okay! I want to play hide and seek again!" he said while bouncing excitedly.
"That would be really fun" Mai said cheerfully.
Yuuichiro squealed happily and hug his mother and sister; then run out looking for Yura-san.
"Yuu-chan is as lively as usual ne?" Mai told Ayako who rolled her eyes at her remarks.
"That was totally an understatement. He's getting more pushy and demanding every single day. If he wasn't the exact replica of that old man, people would mistook him as Naru's child" she said.
Mai laughed at her answer; and deep in her mind, she was thinking whether Naru has the same personality as a child.
-Naru as a kid ... he must be really cute back then. Not to mention with Gene beside him. I bet people swoon over them whenever they passed by- she thought.
"Oh well, enough with Yuuichiro and his behavior. How's the meeting with your uncle?" Ayako asked.
"It was great! Oh, Ayako you won't believe what I'm going to tell you" Mai said excitedly.
"What? Is he going to marry you with his son or something?" Ayako said curiously.
"Hell no Ayako, Shin-kun is two years younger than me"
"So he does have a son. Is he handsome? Age doesn't matter as long as you like each other you know" Ayako said teasingly.
"Aaargh ... you're almost as bad as Ken Oji-san, maybe worse. You two really love to tease me, don't you?" Mai said and scowled at her mother figure.
"Of course, because it's so funny! Your reaction is always amusing Mai. Now I understand why Naru liked to tease you so much. It's fun to watch your reaction" Ayako said and laughed.
"Ugh, whatever. On a second thought, I guess I'll just wait until Bou-san come home then tell him the story" Mai said sulkily.
"Hey! I'm just kidding okay? Now spill it out!"
"No. I will be playing in the garden with Yuu-chan. Tell me when the dinner's ready okay?" Mai said and dashed to the dining room to fetch her little brother; leaving a flabbergasted Ayako behind.
"MAI! COME BACK HERE!"
Mai just laughed and waved her hand.
"Found you Yuu-chan!" Mai said when she found Yuuichiro's hideout; which is behind the bushes at the garden.
"Mou ... Nee-chan, you're too good at this!" he said.
"Ahaha ... I told you I play this a lot with the children at the church right?"
"Yes. Can I meet them Nee-chan?"
"Hnn ... It will be okay I guess; but we need to ask your mommy and daddy first Yuu-chan" she said thoughtfully.
"Yay!" Yuuichiro grinned and laughed happily.
"Ara ... How could you two having fun without me?" a man's voice suddenly interrupted their conversation.
"DADDY!" Yuuichiro exclaimed and run toward his father who immediately take him into his bone crushing hug.
"Hey there son! How's ... OWW!" he said and shouted in pain when he felt Ayako pinch his arm stealthily.
"Yuuichiro ... Go help Yura Oba-san preparing dinner okay? We will go there in a moment" Mai said sweetly.
"Okay Nee-chan!" he said and release himself from his father's hug.
When Yuuichiro finally out of their view, Ayako started to yell at her husband; while Mai just sighed at their usual bantering.
"You stupid old man, are you trying to kill your son?"
"What the heck grandma! That hurt like hell! You pinch me with your claws?" he said while rubbing his aching arm.
"Claws? What do you think I am? A beast?"
"Hmm ... maybe a cat youkai in disguise ... you know with the sharp claws ..." Bou-san said after thinking for a moment.
Ayako whacked his head as hard as she can and stomped away toward the house; leaving a slightly dizzy Bou-san from the impact.
"Wrong answer Bou-san ..." Mai said while giggling cheerfully.
"Ugh ... she must be a boxer in the previous life, I'm sure of it" he said sulkily.
Mai laughed again at his answer and Bou-san gaze softened upon seeing her.
-Hmm ... it seems that she's in a really good mood today. The meeting must be went quite well then- Bou-san thought.
"So how's the interview Bou-san?"
"Huh? Oh, just like usual I guess. Ayako kept telling me to come home before dinner over the phone, and saying that it's unbelievable that so much people seems to be my fan" he said and chuckling amusedly.
"Ahaha ... typical Ayako, even though she also liked to hear your songs"
"Yeah, but world would have ended before she admit that to me" he said playfully; made both of them laughed heartily.
"Soo ... someone having fun today? How's the lunch going?" Bou-san asked her.
"Uh huh, I'm helping John with the children today, and It's been awhile since I met Ken Oji-san. I will tell you about it after dinner okay?"
"Hnn ... that might be a good idea. I only get to eat two sandwich at lunch" he said as his stomach started to growl.
"Geez ... Are you trying to keep your body in shape Bou-san? Starve yourself to death won't bring you any good you know" she said.
"Are you saying that I'm fat?" he said panickedly.
"Just kidding Bou-san ... let's eat before Yuu-chan or Ayako come back and drag us to the dining room" she said and laughed cheerfully.
Mai, Ayako and Bou-san was sitting in the living room, while Yura-san was putting Yuuichiro to sleep (it was 9.00 pm). Both of them stare at her in anticipation; which made her a little bit nervous.
"Okay, you guys seriously make me nervous" she said and waved her hand exasperatedly.
"Well you're the one who makes us curious! Now spill it out!" Ayako said; her eyes twitched impatiently.
"I don't know where to start!"
"Okay. Both of you calm down. Jou-chan, just tell us from the beginning" Bou-san said calmly (A/N: Yes, Bou-san just calming down those two. Surprised? Oh well, he's a father of a boy with somewhat 'unique' personality, not to mention that he got married to a short tempered woman like Ayako, so he developed something akin to 'taming' ability. LOL).
Mai nodded and started telling them about her meeting with Miyagawa-san. She also took out the letter from her mother, and let her parent figures read it by themselves. Their reaction was quite hilarious though. Ayako totally laughed he ass off when she read the 'And that Rock star monk ... he does need a new wardrobe; maybe you could help him chose something that less weird' sentence, while Bou-san have a grave expression upon reading her mother's suggestion of her having a child in her twenty. And yet, they frowned at the mention of Mai's going to England, then their gaze softened again when reading the end of the letter.
"Wow ... I don't know what to say Mai. Your mother was totally awesome! She even know about Naru collapsing after using his power. Heck, even we only know that after Lin told us right? And not to mention about your father. If he's been a Kannushi at such a young age, he must be a great spiritualist too" Ayako said with awe in her every words.
"But what's the thing about you going to England? Are you really going there?" Bou-san said.
"Yeah. I want to meet my grandparents too. But just like my mother say, I don't have to stay there, so it would be just a visit, or a vacation" Mai said.
"That's right. And we're so tagging along with you. Your mother already gave us her permission, so you cannot refuse" Ayako said with finality in her voice.
"Hnn ... I need to ask Ken Oji-san about that. I don't want you to spend more money because of me" Mai said hesitantly.
"Nonsense Jou-chan. If you ever say a thing about not wanting us spending money on you again, I'm going to drag you here to live with us and spoil you rotten" Bou-san said seriously.
"Mou ... Bou-san ..."
"Not another word Mai. You already refused when we want to adopt you; so please at least let us spoil you even if it's just a little bit. This is our way to show our love. You're like a daughter to us" Ayako said tenderly while her husband nodded in agreement.
Mai could only nodded; her tears was threatened to spill again. She always thankful to have such amazing family who cares so much about her; even if they're not related by blood.
"Musume* ... It is okay to tell us your feelings ... no need to keep it all for yourself" Bou-san said gently.
Mai cannot hold her tears anymore and throw herself onto Ayako and Bou-san, sobbing uncontrollably onto their warm embrace.
"She *sniff* never say a thing *sniff* about this ... Was she *sniff* also know that *sniff* she's going to *sniff* die at that time? Why *sniff* didn't she do *sniff* something *sniff* about it?" she said between tears.
Ayako tighten her embrace around Mai's waist while Bou-san carresing his hair tenderly.
"Your mother made her choice ... she must think that it was good for you. After all, you met us because of her right?" Bou-san whispered calmly.
"Yes ... but at least *sniff* she could've warn me about the Narcissistic *sniff* Jerk ..."
"Ahaha ... but you got to admit that his existence in your life was what made us together like now" Ayako added playfully.
"Hnn ... you got a point Ayako ..." Mai said; her cry slowly subsided and soft smile formed on her face.
"See? The point is, you need to look for the bright side of everything. Do not dwell on the negative side. And remember, whatever happen, you will always have us; and your parents in Heaven watching over you" Bou-san said smiled lovingly at his daughter-like-friend.
"Thank you Ayako ... Bou-san ..." Mai wiped away her tears and once again hugged them.
"Don't you thank us Jou-chan ... after all, that's what family are for right?" Bou-san said.
Mai smiled brightly at them; and Bou-san prayed inwardly for her to be always as bright and warm as now.
-She had suffered so much but she still able to smile like that; I hope she will always stay like this no matter what's gonna happen in the future- Bou-san thought.
After discussing about her trip to England and decided to meet Miyagawa-san tomorrow (Ayako and Bou-san insisted to call him right away; thankfully he hasn't gone to sleep yet; and thus come the invitation for lunch at his house on the next day), Mai gave a goodnight kiss to the sleeping Yuuichiro and bid her goodbye to Ayako and Yura-san. Bou-san drove her to her apartment building (he's still paranoid about the robbery that happen two years ago in a nearby neighbourhood) and finally giving her another bone crushing hug before leaving her to rest. Mai watch until his car out of her view and then going upstairs toward her room.
-I wonder what other surprise waiting for me. Oka-san said there'll be another one tonight- she thought.
When she walk down the corridor toward her apartment unit, she felt a presence following behind her; the presence was quite familiar, but she cannot tell who it was. She kept walking; but the presence still tailing behind her. She decided to confront whoever it was that silently following her and turn around to face him/her, but then her eyes met with the nostalgic blue eyes, and she only manage to ask a single question.
"What are you doing here?"
A/N: Please review ... I really need them to know what your thoughts of this story ...
*Musume : daughter (Bou-san calling Mai his daughter when he wants her to be more comfortable when talking with him; and to show his care and concern about her wellbeing)