Chapter 1: The Day We Met
When Shinobu and her older sister, Kanae, decided to adopt Inosuke into their family, they didn’t expect him to be quite a hassle. This was the seventh time this month that either Shinobu or her sister was called in to meet with the principal.
Shinobu didn’t like the man. Something about him made her skin crawl, but unfortunately Kanae was in the middle of surgery so Shinobu had to temporarily close her pharmacy and go across the city to Kimetsu High School. Clad in a light orange, leaf patterned yukata, hair tied in up and clipped into place, Shinobu flipped the sign from open to close, left the doors, locked it, and started making her way to Kimetsu High.
Opening the door to the principal's office, Shinobu saw Inosuke sitting in front of the principal along with another boy.
“Ara, ara. Inosuke, how many times has it been this month? Seven? Remember our promise last time? You promised to not drag Nee-chan and I out of work again this month right? Child’s play was it? But Inosuke, I’m here again… It can’t be helped, then, if you can’t do it.”
“HAAA- - ”
Before Inosuke could finish his sentence, a third voice chimed into their conversation.
“My, Kochou-san. Wonderful to see you again. Please, take a seat. We will begin shortly”
Shinobu turned towards the owner of the voice and smiled, taking a seat next to Inosuke. Ah, she thought, that smile. I can feel the hairs on my arms stand already.
“My, thank you Kibutsuji-san. May I ask how much longer? I do have a store to attend to and customers who need medicine waiting for me.”
“We’ll begin once Kamado-san’s guardian comes.”
Looking to her left, Shinobu took a proper look at the boy who was watching the entire altercation. His reddish-brown hair was slightly slicked back away from his forehead, showing a large birthmark on the left side that looked like a burn mark. Shinobu smiled at the boy and he looked away, clearly flustered.
Moments later, a voice excused themselves as they entered the room. All eyes were on the door as a man in a police uniform stepped in through the door.
“Please excuse my tardiness,” he said as he bowed, “I am Giyuu Tomioka, Tanjiro’s guardian.”
“Ah, welcome Tomioka-san. Please have a seat,” said Muzan.
Nodding, Giyuu walked towards the last available chair next to Shinobu and Tanjiro. When he sat down, Shinobu glanced towards her left and examined him. His long, black hair was matted from wearing his police officer’s hat and was messily tied into a ponytail. His blue eyes looked lifeless but were as clear as the ocean on a nice, sunny day.
“So,” Muzan said as he read from, “According to several eyewitnesses, Kamado-san was seen punching Hashibira-san in the abdominal region, knocking him down. Then Hashibira-san started laughing maniacally before getting up and trying to land punches on Kamado-san. After several failed attempts, Kamda-san then headbutted Hashibira-san.”
After finishing reading the reports, Muzan finally looked up, red eyes glaring at the two boys.
“Now, what do you boys have to say for yourselves?”
Both boys shuddered. Honestly, if Shinobu was in their shoes she would have to. Keeping her signature smile glued onto her face waiting for anyone to answer so she can go back to her pharmacy.
“INOSUKE TRIED TO ATTACK NEZUKO AND ALL I DID WAS TRY TO DEFEND HER!”
“YOUR SISTER IS FUCKING DANGEROUS! HAVE YOU SEEN THE WAY SHE LOOKS AT ME?!”
“WHAT DO YOU MEAN DANGEROUS?! NEZUKO WAS THE BEAUTY OF OUR HOME TOWN I’LL HAVE YOU KNOW!”
“Ara, ara. I can’t believe I got dragged out of work to hear about two high school boys fighting over a girl.”
Inosuke looked to his sister and began to visibly sweat and shake from fear. Despite all the veins popping out of anger, Shinobu kept her smile on her fame and turned to look at both Inosuke and Tanjiro.
“Now, will you be good boys and apologize to each other?”
“Y-y-yes Ma'am,” squeaked both boys as they stood up and apologized to each other.
All of them left the principal’s office after both boys accepting their punishment: Tanjiro with two weeks of suspension and Inosuke with four.
As Tanjiro and Giyuu started walking, Shinobu went to go stop them.
“Excuse me. Tomioka-san, was it? I’m so sorry for all the trouble my idiot brother caused you and Tanjiro-kun,” she said as she bowed.
The only response Shinobu got was a blank expression from Giyuu and a frantic looking Tanjiro as he looked back and forth between Giyuu and Shinobu. Shinobu was pissed. Not only did she have to meet Muzan again, hear about her brother get into a stupid fight, she’s also getting the silent treatment from this person she just met.
I know this was a stupid thing to get called in for but you don’t have to give me the silent treatment. What are you five? Shinobu thought.
“Um, Kochou-san,” Tanjiro managed to say before Shinobu was going to tell Giyuu off.
“You can call me Shinobu.”
“Well then, Shinobu-san. Giyuu-san is… well he is…He doesn’t speak much”
“I can see that,” Shinobu said, smiling.
“So, please don’t be offended by him. Also, you shouldn’t be the one apologizing. Inosuke-kun and I were the ones at fault so we’re sorry about making you come all this way while you both were busy at work.”
“My, what a good boy you are. I can tell you have a pure heart Tanjiro-kun. Well then, Inosuke and I will be heading out first. Farewell Tanjiro-kun, Tomioka-san”
As Shinobu and Inosuke made their way to the end of the hallway, Giyuu’s eyes never left Shinobu’s back. Tanjiro looked up to his guardian.
"It's just... You don't see many people wear yukatas besides a festival."
“Your lunch break is almost over, right Giyuu-san?” Tanjiro smiled, "Let's take you back to the station. I haven't seen Rengoku-san in a while."
When Shinobu and Inosuke were no longer in sight, Giyuu muttered a “yeah” and the pair started their way to Kisatsutai Police Station.
Tanjiro loved going to Kisatsutai Station. The smell of freshly brewed coffee always hit his nose as soon as he steps in through the doors and the hustling and bustling of both officers and civilians alike made Tanjiro feel almost at home. Before getting adopted by Giyuu’s adopted father, Sakonji Urokodaki, Tanjiro and his sister, Nezuko, lived in a cabin quite a distance away from the closest town. Originally living with his mother, father, and four other siblings besides Nezuko, after his father died, Tanjiro had to work odd jobs after school to help support his family. All those happy memories suddenly came to an end two years ago.
~Two Years Ago~
“Mom, I’m going to come home late tonight. I’m helping old man Yamada move and pack some of his crops for shipping,” said Tanjiro as he left the house that morning on his way to school with Nezuko.
“Take care Tanjiro. Don’t be out too late, recently there’s been word going around about suspicious people wandering around at night.”
When Tanjiro finished work, it was much later than he expected. As he made way into the forest, he couldn’t help but smile.
Old man Yamada gave me extra for making me stay so long. Maybe I can treat the kids out to some sweets tomorrow since it is Saturday , he thought.
Continuing up towards the mountain that lead to his house, Tanjiro sensed something was wrong. Somehow the atmosphere around him was heavy despite no one being around him. There was a faint smell in the air but he couldn’t quite pinpoint what it was. A couple of minutes later, the smell grew stronger and Tanjiro eyes went wide open when he recognized the smell.
Blood, he thought, Why is there such a strong smell of blood this late at night. No one usually goes hunting at this hour.
Throwing his book bag down, Tanjiro began to sprint up the mountain, tears flowing down his face, mouth gasping for air. When he finally reached the top of the mountain where his house lied, Tanjiro couldn’t believe his eyes. There in front of him was Nezuko and his youngest brother, Rokuta, laying there covered in blood with a bloody trail behind them.
“Nezuko! Nezuko!” He kept screaming as he ran near her. Dropping down next to her, Tanjiro couldn’t believe his eyes. The trail of blood that followed Nezuko lead to the genkan where his mother, sister, and two younger brothers laid, all covered in blood and slash marks. All dead.
“O-nii...c-chan,” came a faint voice.
“NEZUKO! WHO DID THIS TO YOU!”
“R-run,” Nezuko barely managed to say before fainting.
“NEZUKO! HANG IN THERE. NII-CHAN WILL SAVE YOU!” He screamed, putting Nezuko on his back and began running back down the mountain, hoping anyone was awake to save his family.
Everything that happened after that was a blur. Tanjiro remembered half-way down the mountain he encountered Giyuu who came to his town in order to investigate the recent rumors surrounding it. It wasn’t uncommon to see someone from the Kisatsutai Station wandering around Japan investigating rumors as they are the best in the business. Even in his small town, Tanjiro has heard whispers here and there about them but he never expected to see one in the flesh seeing how his town was peaceful until now.
“H-help me,” Tanjiro said, tears streaming down his face, before everything went black.
When Tanjiro awoke, he was greeted by a stark white ceiling, bright lights blasting on his eyes.
“Your awake,” said a male voice Tanjiro never heard before, “Let me call the doctor over.”
“W-where’s Nezuko. W-where’s my s-sister,” Tanjiro said half-dazed. He was surprised to hear his voice. It sounded so hoarse and uttering those two sentences alone made his throat feel like it was on fire.
“Your sister is fine. She just got out from surgery. The doctor said she’s going to be all fine,” said the man.
Moments after the man disappeared, Tanjiro was greeted by the most beautiful woman he’s ever seen. Her purple eyes sparkled in the bright hospital lights, lips stained red, pink and green butterfly earrings dangled as she walked towards the seat next to his bed, and long black hair was pulled back into a ponytail.
“Hello, how are you doing? My name is Kanae Kochou. What’s yours?”
“Ara ara. Your throat is all parched. I’ll have someone bring you some water soon Tanjiro-kun. In the meantime, rest well. There seems to be no major injuries besides some scratches and bruises here and there. However, your body is extremely fatigued, so once you’re all better you can visit your sister okay?”
With a nod, Kanae left the room and Tanjiro was left all alone with his thoughts.
“Mom. Takeo. Hanako. Shigeru. Rokuta. I’m sorry. I’m so sorry I couldn’t protect you,” Tanjiro said as he cried, remembering the horrific memory that happened before he came to the hospital.
Weeks went by and Tanjiro would visit Nezuko every day. She was in a comatose state ever since the surgery but Dr. Kanae promised Tanjiro she would wake soon. Two months later, Nezuko had finally awakened but couldn’t speak. Dr. Kanae suspected it was due to the trauma she went through. With or without voice, Tanjiro was just happy to see Nezuko alive and well.
“My name is Giyuu Tomioka. We met the first day you woke up, Tanjiro.”
Giyuu’s visit was both a surprise but it wasn’t unexpected. It had been a little over half a year since the incident. Tanjiro was now thirteen and since both him and Nezuko had recovered it was time for them to leave the hospital.
Handing Tanjiro a piece of paper with a map scribbled on it, Giyuu said, “Go to this location with your sister. The person living there will be your new adoptive father. I’ve already informed him about what had happened and he’s prepared a room for you and Nezuko.”
“Thank you Giyuu-san… Um... I don’t know how to thank you for all you’ve done.”
“Just live. Live your life to the fullest and that will be enough”
And just like that, Tanjiro and Nezuko took the train to their new home. There they met, Sakonji Urokodaki, a man probably in his sixties judging by the wrinkles on his skin and his entire head of grey hair. Although strict at first, Urokodaki proved to be a loving father to Tanjiro and Nezuko. They were often visited by two people Urokodaki also used to take care of named Sabito and Makomo. Every night when Urokodaki fell asleep early, Sabito and Makomo would tell Tanjiro stories of the past. The reason why they lived close to Urokodaki was to check up on him as he wasn’t getting any younger. They tried moving in but Urokodaki waved them off telling them to live their youth. Sabito had also worked at Kisatsutai before having to retire early due to an injury which left him unable to hold a gun anymore and leaving Giyuu, his partner, guilty.
This lasted two years and with Tanjiro approaching fifteen, and needing to attend high school, the Kamado sibling then moved in with Giyuu as there were no local high schools anywhere near Urokodaki’s house.
As Tanjiro continued to reminisce in his memories, a man pushed him causing Tanjiro to almost fall over.
“Hey brat, stop blocking the whole fucking hallway. Can’t ya see we’re busy? This ain’t a fucking playground,” said a visibly angered man littered with scars.
“Sanemi, leave young Tanjiro alone,” came another voice, this time belonging a man munching on a sweet potato
“What the fuck did you say Kyojuro?” said Sanemi, lifting his sleeves as if ready to fight the man right there and then.
“U-um guys, let’s not fight,” said a fidgeting woman with pink and green hair tied into two large braids. Her face was so red that if Tanjiro didn’t know her well, he would’ve thought she was running a fever.
“Ignore them Mitsuri,” said a man with a face mask covering his mouth, “We have to go to our next assignment.”
“O-oh okay Obanai-kun. Bye Tanjiro-kun,” Misturi said as she walked past Tanjiro to Obanai who had opened the door for Mitsuri and was waiting for her.
Ah, thought Tanjiro, I love this place.
After two weeks of visiting Kisatsutai, doing chores, catching up on assignments brought to him by his friend Zenitsu Agatsuma, Tanjiro was finally able to go back to school and on his first day back, he was assigned to clean up duty along with another student. Kanao Tsuyuri. She was a girl that was idolized by all the boys at school for her beauty. Her bangs were cut in a way that framed her face nicely and the rest of her hair was always styled in a high, side ponytail and clipped with a butterfly hairpin. Her eyes were a soft purple and her pink tinted lips always dorned a small smile. However, no matter how much she was admired, no one has ever talked to Kanao. Few have tried when the school semester first started but was always given a smile and nothing else. Soon Kanao was left alone and only talked when chosen by teachers to answer questions.
“Kanao-chan, let’s get along,” Tanjiro said sticking his hand out.
Kanao took his hand, shaking it, a smile on her face.
Finally after completing their duties, Kanao and Tanjiro began packing up their bags.
“Thanks Kanao-chan for helping me today”
Expecting no response, Tanjiro began to leave until he heard rummaging and turned around to look at Kanao who fished out a coin out of her school bag. Tossing it up in the air before finally grabbing it to reveal it had landed on tail. Giving the coin a long stare, Kanao then looked Tanjiro in the eyes.
“I was just doing what was asked of me. There is no need for thanks. Farewell.”
She talked to me! Thought Kanjiro, clearly delighted.
“Farewell,” she said again.
“Is that a coin? It says “heads” and “tails”, huh? Why do you flip it?”
“I flip this coin whenever I have to make a decision that I wasn’t told to do. I flipped it to decide whether or not I should talk to you. “Speak” was tails and “Don’t speak” was heads and since it landed on tails, I decided to talk to you.”
“Heh, that’s pretty cool. But Kanao-chan, how come you can’t decide things on your own?”
“It doesn’t matter.”
“I don’t think there’s anything in this world that doesn’t matter. Hey, can I see that coin?”
“Huh? O-okay,” Kanao said before giving Tanjiro the coin.
“Okay! If this lands on “heads” Kanao will start listening to her heart!” Tanjiro exclaimed as he tossed it high into the air, “O-oh shoot! That was too high!”
When it landed on Tanjiro’s hand, Kanao started sweating. What is it? She thought. The coin spun too fast I couldn’t see.
“IT’S HEADS!” Tanjiro yelled, quickly cupping Kanao’s hands in excitement.
“HOW DID YOU KNOW?!” Kanao asked in a voice so loud that she couldn’t believe it came from her.
“It was just luck. But you know, Kanao-chan, I would’ve done it hundreds of times until it finally landed on heads.
This caused Kanao’s face to turn bright red. She slowly pried her hands away and turned her head away, hoping Tanjiro didn’t notice.
“W-well then, I-i have to go to kendo club now. See you Tanjiro-kun.”
“Oh, I’ll walk you there,” quickly grabbing his bag, “I’ve been thinking about joining the kendo club too. You see, my guardian used to do kendo and I’ve been thinking about doing it since I want to be someone who’s strong like him.”
“Then let’s go,” Kanao said as she began walking down the halls towards the gym.
When Kanao came home, she was greeted by the delightful smell of miso soup. Taking off her brown, leather shoes and slipping on her slippers, Kanao was greeted by her eldest sister Kanae.
“Ara? Kanao-chan welcome home,” she said as she walked over to Kanao and pulled her into a hug.
“Onee-chan, I’m home,” she said, closing her eyes, breathing in Kanae’s perfume that smelled like roses. Growing up, Kanao had never felt the warmth and love of a parental figure until she was adopted into the Kochou family. Her life went from a run-down shack and being abused left and right by her birth parents to being greeted by either Kanae, Shinobu, or Inosuke when she entered their huge, traditional Japanese home.
“How was school today?”
“I-i think I made a friend,” Kanao whispered.
Suddenly, Kanao was no longer enveloped in Kanae’s arms as her eldest sister ran over to the kitchen where Shinobu was cooking dinner. Kanae was practically jumping up and down, squealing to her younger sister about what Kanao just told her and Shinobu was visibly annoyed when Kanao walked past them to her room to put down her stuff. Pulling out her coin, Kanao looked at it before clutching it to her chest, blushing as she remembered what had happened earlier in the day. After being called out to dinner, Kanao bumped into Inosuke and greeted him with a smile.
“Yo, Kanao! You know what Nee-chan is spouting on and on about? I could hear it from my room.”
“I’ll tell you later,” she said with a huge grin on her face as the two walked into the dining room table where their two sisters where waiting.
I know Shinobu and Giyuu barely made appearances in this chapter but I wanted to establish some of Tanjiro's backstory and finally introduce Kanao into the story. Since I'm trying to include almost every single character in the story, some of them might not get acknowledged that much. There may be more backstories for other characters in the future and I'm mostly going to go by the manga so spoilers ahead! Anyways hope you guys liked this chapter and sorry this was so late!
Kagaya Ubuyashiki, the current governor of the region where the Kisatsutai Police Station’s headquarters was located and a man who has the respect of everyone in the organization even the most rebellious ones like Sanemi Shinazugawa. Kagaya came from a long line of trusted politicians and was easily able to win every election he enters and many lovingly call him “Oyakata-Sama”. However, he was a frail man, often getting sick and needing the support of his wife, Amane, and his five children. His resident is also often the meeting place where the high ranking officials of the Kisatsutai, called the Hashiras, meet to discuss their progress on current high profile cases.
As the Hashiras came early one day for a meeting, they gather around the Ubuyashiki’s garden until he was ready to make his appearance.
The first to arrive was Gyomei Himejima, the current head of the Kisatsutai Police Force. Although often seen crying, the man is seven feet and two inches tall and is a force to be reckoned with. According to rumors, Gyomei was raised in a local temple with nine other orphans and one day a man came and murdered the children after getting caught stealing. In order to protect him and the only child still alive, Gyomei attacked the man and continued to beat the man’s head until the police came. Despite having a criminal record, Kagaya specifically appointed Gyomei as the head of the police force due to his trust in Gyomei’s abilities.
The next to arrive was Kyojuro Rengoku and currently the youngest Hashira. Not only was he strong, Rengoku was also incredibly fast, easily outpacing everyone in the mile test during the past Hashira selection trials. As the child of a previous Hashira, many around Kyojuro has high expectations for him to overcome his father’s legacy but all Kyojuro wants is for his father to return to who he used to be before his mother passed away.
The next to come was Giyuu. Because he was meeting Kagaya today, he tried to brush up his appearance and his usually messy hair was combed and tied in a way that was somewhat better than what he usually had. When he entered the gates that lead to the garden, Gyomei and Kyojuro greeted him but nothing came after that.
After Giyuu came, Obanai and Mitsuri shortly followed with Sanemi strolling in a few minutes later.
The last to arrive was Tengen Uzui who wanted to be “flamboyantly late”. Much like his signature catchphrase “flamboyant”, the man also lived a very exuberant lifestyle being in a polygamous relationship with three women and often dressing in gaudy jewlery and clothing on his day off. According to him, he was trained to be a hitman from an early age before joining the Kisatsutai.
As the Hashiras waited for Kagaya to make his appearance, many formed their own groups, making small talk with each other, well everyone besides Giyuu who was often ignored due to his inability to continue a conversation for more than a sentence. After about half an hour of waiting, Kagaya’s eldest daughters came out to announce their father’s arrival before sliding the shoji open. There Kagaya slowly emerged from the darkness and with the help of his daughters sat in front of the Hashiras.
“Forgive my tardiness. I’m afraid my body hasn’t been well these days,” he said in his soothing voice.
“It is no problem at all Oyakata-sama,” the Hashiras said in unison.
“So, has the Kisatsutai made any progress on all these murders that have been happening?”
“Although some may assume it is done by the same person judging by the slash marks left on all the victims’ bodies, we have deduced they are from different people, probably a group of individuals belonging to the same organization,” said Gyomei.
“Oh? How so?” asked Kagaya, clearly intrigued.
“Generally if this is the work by one person, their modus operandi would be consistent, preferring a certain method of killing, but we’ve discovered that the killing methods for each case differs most of the time and the only thing similar in each case is the slash marks making us think it’s a signature of some sort,” said in Kyojuro.
“And it’s impossible for one person to do. For example, on February 5th, our branch in Aomori discovered a fresh body with slash marks laying in an apple orchard and the same day a group in Hiroshima found another person who was barely alive with slash marks on his chest. Taking the train from Aomori to Hiroshima would take at least fifteen hours,” chimed in Obanai.
“I see… Good job,” Kagaya said with a smile, “Please continue with all the hard work. In order to make sure people can sleep soundly at night, we must stop this group of individuals. You are dismissed for today.”
“Thank you, Oyakata-sama. Please stay well,” the Hashiras said bowing to him before leaving.
As Giyuu was leaving, Kagaya called him over.
“Giyuu, sorry to inconvenience you but can you help me grab my prescriptions for me. It seems I am almost out and unfortunately no one in my family is able to drop by since it’s on the other side of the city.”
“It is alright Oyakata-sama. I will be back momentarily. I assume you want me to get it from Butterfly Hospital?”
“Ah, about that. I’ve recently been taking kampō to see if it can help with my condition, so it won’t be at Butterfly Hospital. Here is my prescription and a note to the owner telling her it’s okay if you were the one to pick it up. On the back, I drew a map for you,” he said as one of his daughter handed Giyuu the papers, “Thank you once again Giyuu.”
Giyuu nodded and bowed to Kagaya one last time before exiting the property to catch a train to his destination.
“Like I said ma’am, you must take one packet, put it in water and boil it for one hour before you can drink it,” Shinobu said smiling at the old woman in front of her, veins slowly becoming visible on her forehead.
I’ve been at this for almost an hour, she thought, It’s way past lunchtime and at this point I might starve before she understands.
“Huh? Dear you must speak up. I’m afraid my hearing aid isn’t working today,” said the woman as she leaned closer to Shinobu, cupping her ear in case it helped hear her better.
Frustrated, Shinobu grabbed a piece of printer paper from the counter and scribbled the instructions before handing it to the woman.
“Oh but dearie, I’m afraid I can’t see this when you write so small.”
“I’m sure your kids or grandkids will help you out,” Shinobu said as she slowly ushered the woman out.
As they stood in front of the door, the old woman turned around and thanked Shinobu before giving her the payment for the medicine. Exhausted, Shinobu flipped the sign from open to close and leaned her forehead against the door, body almost collapsing from exhaustion. Before she knew it, the door slid open and Shinobu lost balance falling forward. Alarmed and expecting for her face to make contact with the concrete floor of the streets outside, Shinobu closed her eyes. But instead of her face hitting the floor, it hit something else that was hard as her body was enveloped in an embrace.
When Giyuu left the station after a thirty minute ride from the Ubuyashiki residence, he slowly made his way towards his destination. After about a ten minute walk from the station, he finally made it to what he believed was his destination. As he approached closer, he saw an old woman leaving a building with a bag full of medicine.
I guess that’s the place , he thought but not before double checking the map Kagaya had drawn for him.
Stopping in front of the door, he slid the wooden sliding door and was met with a shriek. He was met by a girl almost a foot smaller than him who was about to meet face to face with the concrete floor. Quickly, Giyuu pulled the girl in an embrace in order to prevent her from meeting her doom. After a moment of silence from both of them, the girl finally spoke.
“When are you going to let go of me. I can feel people staring at us.”
Sure enough, Giyuu looked around only to make quick eye contact with passersby before they looked away after being caught. Giyuu then released his arms from the girl and she slowly regained her footing before tilting her head to look at him. Giyuu immediately recognized her as the girl she met a few weeks ago. Today she was dressed in a lilac yukata decorated with tiny white flowers near the end of the sleeves and bottom. Her obi was a darker purple that matched the color of her eyes. The wings of the butterfly hairpin that adorned her head moved slightly as she readjusted herself.
“Geh, why isn’t it Tomioka-san. I didn’t know you couldn’t read but that sign clearly says ‘Closed’ doesn’t it?” she said gesturing to the sign attached to a window, “How did you even find out where I work? My, I didn’t know the Kisatsutai had a stalker among them.”
“I came to get medicine.”
“I can tell otherwise why would you come to my store? So what have you come here for? I’m sorry to inform you that I don’t have the cure for stupidity,” she said, clearly enjoying teasing him.
Clearly annoyed Giyuu handed him the papers Kagaya gave him.
“What is this?” she asked before quickly scanning it, “Why didn’t you tell me earlier this was for Oyakata-sama?”
“I tried…” he muttered.
“Well, if you weren’t so horrible at speaking then this wouldn’t have happened right?” before entering the store to grab everything she needed.
Giyuu pouted before following her into the store. He was greeted by walls of cabinets that reached the ceiling, each contained some sort of herb or plant. Near the back was a glass counter with bags of herbs piled inside, each with writing to signify the price for each bag. On top of the counter was a cash register and an incense burner that emitted the lingering scent of Wisteria flowers. While Giyuu was taking in his surroundings, Shinobu disappeared into a door located to the left of the counter. Giyuu followed her and noticed her trying to move a ladder near the corner. Without saying anything, Giyuu went behind her and helped her move the ladder and asked her where he should put it. Shinobu, head down from embarrassment, lead him to its designated location before taking off her zori so she can climb the ladder better. As she moved busily around the small store, Giyuu’s eyes never left her. It was as if she was a honey bee flying from flower to flower gathering pollen he thought.
After she gathered everything she needed, Shinobu grabbed a chair that was stacked on top of another one in the corner as well as a scale and mortar and pestle. Shinobu began weighing each ingredient carefully, grinding some in the mortar until it became a fine dust, began combining each ingredient together, and then wrapping it in a small sheet of paper. Giyuu was mesmerized by how fast she worked while watching her tiny hands move around gracefully. Noticing his stare, Shinobu quickly glanced up from her work before looking back down.
“Is something the matter?” she asked.
Taken aback by the sudden question, Giyuu shook his head.
“You’ve been staring at me this whole time,” she murmured.
“I...I just wondered why you’re always wearing a yukata. It’s rare to see someone wear them besides during festivals,” he said.
“Oh? Do you like it?” she asked cheekily causing a small, almost unnoticeable blush to form on Giyuu’s face, “It just fits with the aesthetic of this place. Old traditional way of medicine with old traditional clothing right?” she said smiling at him.
“Besides, the old people love this and always come back with their friends talking about nostalgia and stuff while reminiscing about the past,” she added continuing packing the medicine for Kagaya.
After she was done, she handed the medicine to Giyuu.
“Sorry for barging in when you were closed,” he said as Shinobu bid him farewell.
“Well then, I’ll be on my way. Don’t stay out too late Kochou, it’s dangerous at night.”
“I think I can protect myself just fine Tomioka-san,” she said before shooing him off, “Go along now, Oyakata-sama needs his medicine.”
Waving goodbye, Giyuu made his way back towards the station to catch a train to Ubuyashiki manor, Shinobu’s eyes never left his back. As soon as he disappeared into the horizon, Shinobu’s stomach growled.
“Ara? I should’ve asked him to treat me to a meal,” she whispered to herself before locking her pharmacy’s doors.
“Now what should I eat?” she said in a sing song voice looking around at the local food vendors.
In case it was hard to understand, kampo, the thing Shinobu practices, is traditional Japanese medicine derived from the knowledge of ancient Chinese medicine. Although I've never been to a kampo store, I have been in a traditional Chinese medicine store so I used my knowledge from them. If the structures of the stores are different then I apologize. Also I apologize if the dialogue sounds awkward because for some reason when I write dialogue, in my head it comes out in Japanese and I'm used to doing direct translations because of school.
Chapter 4: The Day I Tried to Protect You
Class 2-2’s Ume Shabana has been declared the prettiest girl at school for the past two years. Since she was a child, no matter if it was a man or woman, they all snuck a glance as Ume walked past them. Her beauty was unrivaled, that is, until Tsuyuri Kanao transferred to Kimetsu High. The hallways were no longer filled with whispers of Ume’s beauty but instead of Kanao’s. Just thinking about it made Ume’s blood boil.
“Ume-chan, you’re going to get wrinkles if you do that.”
Ume recognized the voice immediately glared at the owner of the voice, Susamaru, a third year and captain of the volleyball team. Next to her was Yahaba, another third year and president of the archery club. Frankly, Ume hated the two of them. They were constantly kissing up to Ume and her brother, Gyuutarou, after one of Ume’s lackeys spilled the beans that she and her brother were part of an exclusive club.
“What the fuck are you doing in the second year floor. Here to kiss ass again?”
“Calm down Ume-chan,” Susamaru replied with a smile, “Your brother was looking for you.”
Without a second thought, Ume packed her things, and began to leave.
“Ummm… Shabana-san class is starting soon. If you leave now the teacher will be late,” said a trembling boy. What was his name again? Kanagawa? Takahashi? All Ume knew was that he was picked as the class president because no one wanted to do it but the boy didn’t even have the guts to stand in front of the class without breaking down in tears. Ignoring his comment, Ume slid the classroom door opened and made her way towards the roof where her brother was waiting.
“Ume what’s wrong?” Gyuutaro asked as he leaned back and blew out a cloud of cigarette smoke.
“Nothing…” she replied taking a seat next to her brother.
“You know I know you better than that,” he said putting his free hand on her head, “Now tell your big bro what’s wrong.”
“Big bro, tell me honestly. Am I pretty?”
“Is that Tsuyuri chick bothering you again,” he said putting out his cigarette, listening intently to his sister’s woes.
“Don’t you think it’s unfair?! She’s an orphan like us but somehow she gets adopted into a wealthy family like the Kochou’s, while big bro has to do kill for us to survive and mom’s a wreck,” tears beginning to form in her eyes but Ume wiped it away. She hated making her brother worried and besides if she cried she’d have to redo her makeup.
“The boss told us that we could do whatever we wanted. So just say the word and big bro is gonna make sure that a smile is gonna be plastered on that pretty face of yours,” he said looking at her and smiled. Ume smiled and nodded.
THWACK! The sound of the bamboo sword making contact with its target reverberated around the gym. The referee lifted up the small red flag.
“The winner is Kanao Tsuyuri of Kimetsu High!”
Kanao bowed to her opponent and removed her helmet. Before she could turn around, her teammates ran up to her and lifted her ecstatically. They all congratulated her for her victory and helping the team make it to the final round for the national kendo competition.
“Good job Kanao,” said Tanjiro after the commotion quiet down. He handed her a towel to wipe her sweat as well as her water bottle.
“You did great too, Tanjiro-kun,” she replied after thanking him for the towel and water, “You’ve really improved since you first started. It’s hard to believe this is your first year as well.”
“It’s because I have such a great teacher,” he replied smiling earning a blush from Kanao, “Zenitsu-kun was really amazing as well. He’s usually so timid but when he gets in the zone he’s almost as fast as lighting.”
“I think Inosuke would do well in kendo. He’s strong and fast but ultimately he chose the judo club.”
After a moment of comfortable silence between the two of them, Inosuke, Zenitsu, and Nezuko walked towards them.
“Haha, Monjiro. You call that a fight? You’ll never be able to beat Kanao at this point!” yelled Inosuke getting Tanjiro riled up as the two started arguing.
“Don’t listen to him Nii-chan. You were so cool.” wrote Nezuko on a sketchbook Giyuu bought for her to communicate.
“Hey, what about me Nezuko-chan?” asked Zenitsu earning himself a pat on the head from Nezuko.
“It’s getting late…” said Kanao, “Inosuke. Kanae nee-chan and Shinobu nee-chan are going to scold us if we stay out too late.
“I know. I know,” Inosuke said waving her off, “Hurry up and get changed. I’ll wait in front of the entrance.”
“L-let’s go home together,” said Tanjiro, a small blush appearing on his cheeks. Ideally, he would’ve wanted to go home with just Kanao but since Nezuko came to watch him, he couldn’t leave her alone, especially not with Zenitsu. He looked at Kanao and she nodded before disappearing into the changing rooms.
When the quartet stepped outside of the brightly lit gym, they were greeted with almost pitch black surroundings. Since the seasons were changing and winter was fast approaching, they sky tended to get dark at around 4:30 p.m. The only thing that helped illuminate the surrounding was the flickering streetlight in front of the school gates. They knew they had to wait a while since getting in and out of the kendo uniform could take a while.
“Hey Momojiro, you got a thing for Kanao?” Inosuke abruptly asked after a few minutes of waiting in silence. Tanjiro spat out the water he was drinking and despite it being so dimly lit, they could all see his face go bright red.
“W-w-why so suddenly?” Tanjiro sputtered out.
“There are rumors going around school you two are dating,” Zenitsu chimed in, “The school’s beautiful silent princess is talking to a common monkey.”
“Listen Jiro. Kanao is too good for you so back off.”
“Why don’t you let her decide that,” Tanjiro replied, furious. “She can make her own decisions you know.”
As the two continued to argue with Nezuko and Zenitsu watching, two figures emerged from the darkness.
“Oya oya? I see the school has a pest problem,” said the female voice.
“I guess we have to exterminate them so our princess can be happy,” replied the male voice.
“Huh? Who the fuck are you?!” exclaimed Inosuke. Tanjiro squinted his eyes. He could barely make out their silhouettes but as the two came closer, the thing in their hands reflected the light coming from the street lamp.
“Run! They have a knife,” Tanjiro yelled grabbing Nezuko’s hand as they ran back towards the school. Just then, a knife hit Tanjiro in the shoulder, the shock and pain causing him to let go of Nezuko and fall on the floor, clutching his shoulder.
“Woooo,” the girl whistled, “Nice one, Yahaba. As expected of the captain of the archery club.”
“Y-yahaba?” said Zenitsu, shaking, “That means…”
“Yoohoo, Susamaru at your service.”
“The fuck you want with us?!” asked Inosuke seething with anger.
“Our princess is quite angry with yours,” Yahaba replied, “And in order to join their exclusive gang, Gyuutarou-sama asked us to get rid of her.”
“And right now, you stand in our way. Don’t take this the wrong way,” Susamaru said with a smile, before charging straight at Nezuko. Before she could make contact, her hand was knocked away.
“D-don’t touch Nezuko,” Tanjiro said, bringing down his bamboo sword. He stumbled as he tried to stand up, still clutching his shoulder, the knife now on the floor.
“Not bad kid,” Susamaru smirked, “I wonder how long you can hold up.”
“Nezuko, go find Kanao. Go somewhere safe with her and leave this to us,” Tanjiro said as he turned to Nezuko. She nodded and began running towards the locker room.
“Not on my watch bitch,” Susamaru said as she started to chase her. Before she could even blink, a flash of yellow appeared and she flew back after making contact with a bamboo sword.
“What the fu-”
“Thanks a lot Zenitsu!” yelled Tanjiro.
How the fuck is this brat so fast , Susamaru thought wiping the blood from her lip where she bit in surprise. I can’t lose the girl. If I do I can’t join the Junikizuki and even worse I might get killed.
“Yahaba! After the girl, we can’t lose her.”
“Umm. Can’t you see I’m a little occupied here?”
Sure enough as Susamaru glanced over to her partner, he was trying his best not to get hit by the boar-like movements coming from the very feminine boy. What the fuck is wrong with this group of brats , she thought.
“TANJIRO-KUN! INOSUKE! AGATSUMA-KUN!”
All eyes turned towards the voice as Kanao emerged from the building, running towards the fight and Nezuko trailing close behind, panicking.
“Lucky me!” yelled Susamaru, knife in hand, as she ran full force towards Kanao.
“Kanao you idiot! Go back!”
Getting into stance, Kanao pulled out the wooden dowel from a broom that she had concealed and with all her might, she knocked Susamaru across the first, sending her flying.
“SUSAMARU!” yelled Yahaba as his eyes followed Susamaru’s body. He turned around and was face-to-face with Kanao before he was also knocked out. The boys and Nezuko stared in awe at Kanao as she relaxed her body and looked at them.
“Tanjiro-kun! You’re shoulder!” Kanao exclaimed wide eyed.
Confused, Tanjiro looked at his shoulder and the blood that had stained his white shirt. As the adrenaline wore off, Tanjiro’s head felt faint and the next thing he saw was several police cars and his guardian running towards him.
When Tanjiro had awoken, he was greeted by the stark white walls of a hospital room. What dejavu , he thought as he tried to get up from the bed. However, his blanket didn’t budge and prevented him from getting up. He lifted his head up and saw Nezuko, Kanao, Zenitsu, and even Inosuke laying their heads on top of his blanket, sleeping. Besides a few scratches on Zenitsu and a couple of bruises on Inosuke, everyone else was fine. Tanjiro sighed in relief.
“My, it’s nice to see you again Tanjiro-kun,” came a gentle voice. Tanjiro moved his eyes towards the source and his red eyes met pale purple ones. The woman smiled.
“Do you remember me?”
“Kanae is fine,” she said as she brought a stool over and sat behind Kanao. “Thank you for taking care of my little sister and brother.”
“Sister? Brother?” Tanjiro said, eyeing Kanao then Inosuke then Kanae and finally back to Kanao. The realization caused Tanjiro to jump up and the sudden movement woke up Kanao. Still half asleep, she rubbed her eyes and looked at Tanjiro. Realizing he was awake, Kanao jumped up and hugged Tanjiro causing him to wince from the sudden impact.
“Ah. Sorry…” she whispered, blushing.
“No, it’s okay,” replied Tanjiro, his face burning from embarrassment and excitement.
“Ara ara,” Kanae said smiling as she watched everything unfold, “How nice it is to be young.”
“Anyways… Tanjiro-kun. Everything seems to be alright. Good thing your little sister texted Giyuu-kun that you were in trouble or something serious could’ve happened. If you’re wondering where he is right now, he’s at Kisatsutai right now interrogating the two students who attacked you. Apparently the knives they were using had some significance to a case they’re working on right now.”
“He’s going to pick you and your sister up early in the morning so please get some sleep before then. Kanao-chan, you should sleep in the bed next to Tanjiro-kun. If you sleep sitting like that you’ll ruin your posture,” Kanae said urging her younger sister onto the bed before making her way towards the door and bidding them farewell. Kanao and Tanjiro were left laying in silence as the two looked at the door Kanae left from and then to each other.
“I just wanted to thank you Tanjiro for protecting me,” Kanao whispered.
“Nononononono. It was you who protected me Kanao-chan,” Tanjiro said bringing his hands to cover the oncoming blush, “I wanted to look cool but ended up having you save me…”
“I thought you were cool…” she said, “I always think you’re cool. I think it’s cool that you can speak your mind. I think it’s cool that you can easily make friends with people. It’s cool that you look out for others. It’s cool that--”
“Kanao-chan please stop. I think I’m going to die from embarrassment,” Tanjiro said as his face became bright red. He glanced over to Kanao whose face was almost the same shade of red as Tanjiro’s. How cute , he thought.
“Hey Kanao-chan. I li--” he stopped himself, “I think we should go to bed now. We don’t want bags under your eyes now do we?”
“Yea… Goodnight Tanjiro-kun”
The main branch of the Kisatsutai has gotten busier ever since Tanjiro got attacked at his school. Due to his past as a trained assassin, Tengen was quite knowledgeable with weapons and identified that the knives they confiscated and the one that hit Tanjiro were specially made. The special marks they made also fit the slash marks found in previous victims around the country. The only question was were the perpetrators two high school students or were they part of a group. When Giyuu interviewed Tanjiro after he was dismissed from the hospital he told Giyuu that the two mentioned about wanting to join an exclusive group two siblings were apart of but when Susamaru and Gyuutaro were interrogated individually by Sanemi they refused to talk, breaking out in cold sweat. Giyuu closed his eyes and pinched the bridge of his nose. He hadn’t been home since dropping Tanjiro off and has been working non-stop trying to solve the case with the other Hashiras. His back hurt from constantly sleeping at his desk or the sofa in the staff lounge and he hasn’t had a decent meal in days.
“Yo Giyuu,” said Kyojuro, whose desk was next to Giyuu’s, “You should go home and rest. I know you wanna find out who did this but you look like you’re gonna pass out soon.”
Giyuu nodded but didn’t budge from his chair. His eyes continued to scan the report trying to look for any details he missed. Before he knew it, he was no longer sitting in his chair as Mitsuri came up from behind and was now lifting him up and taking him to the door.
“I’m sorry Tomioka-san,” she apologized, her face was beet red and covered in sweat, “But you have to go home. Leave this to us.” Mitsuri open the front door, throw Giyuu out, and locked it behind him. Giyuu sat in disbelief for a few minutes. He knew Mitsuri was strong but not this strong. Giyuu was a good four inches taller than the woman and was about 150 lbs yet somehow Mitsuri was able to carry him as if he was a small child. Giyuu proceeded to stand up and walk home.
“Thank you so much Shinobu dear,” said the old woman lying on a futon, “I’m so sorry to ask you to come all the way here when you’re so busy.”
“Nonsense, Hisa obaa-chan. You’ve done so much for this neighborhood and for my family and I. If you ever need help please don’t hesitate to call,” Shinobu said. She reached into her purse and pulled out the packets of medicine and placed it in the old woman’s hands. “This is for your cold. Take two of these a day and get plenty of rest. I’ll come back in a few days to check up on you okay.
As she exited the Wisteria family manor, Shinobu noticed a familiar figure approaching. As the figure came closer, Shinobu called out their name trying to get their attention.
“Well if it isn’t Tomioka-san? What are you doing here?” she asked. No response. So Shinobu tried again.
“Yoohoo! Tomioka-san. Earth to Tomioka-san!” she said, raising her voice ever so slightly just in case he couldn’t hear her.
“Ah. Kochou… What are you doing here?”
“I could ask you the same thing.”
“I’m going home…”
“Oh, do you live in this neighborhood?” Shinobu asked. Giyuu looked around at his surroundings with a confused look on his face.
Shinobu grabbed Giyuu by the arm and dragged him down to her pharmacy that was located a couple of blocks away. She shoved him inside and took him to the room where the ladder was located last time. She pointed at the bed that was pushed against the back wall indicating Giyuu to sit down. When was that there, Giyuu thought.
“Why do you have a bed here?”
“I sleep here sometimes when it gets too dark,” she replied as she moved towards the small kitchen located on the other side of the room. Giyuu watched her as she looked around the cabinets, pulling out a kettle, a tin container, a teapot, and two cups. Giyuu noticed she hadn’t been wearing a yukata today but instead a black hoodie, a white floral patterned skirt that reached her ankles, and a pair of sneakers. Her hair wasn’t even tied in it’s usual manner but instead it was in a low ponytail with a butterfly hair tie securing it in place.
“How come you’re not wearing a yukata today?” he asked, curiosity getting the better of him. Normally, Giyuu wouldn’t have even caught the difference. He remembered one time when he was around fifteen or sixteen, Makomo had cut her bangs and when Giyuu failed to point out the difference, he earned a punch from the tiny girl. Somehow Shinobu was different and Giyuu couldn’t explain why. Everything about her fascinated him.
“Oh, I’m not supposed to be working today,” she said, “Store’s closed on Saturdays and so I can spend time with my siblings but a very loyal customer of mine got sick recently. She’s old and all her children moved far away so I came in to check in on her.”
Soon there was silence as Giyuu no longer had anymore questions and Shinobu had disappeared to the front of the store to look for something else. When the kettle made a loud hissing noise that signified the water was done boiling, Shinobu came back into the room with a bag in hand. She set the bag on one of the counters, poured some flowers into a tea bag inside the teapot and began pouring the hot water.
“This is chamomile tea,” she said, “It helps with sleeping. You can use the bed and rest. I’ll close the door so no one bothers you.”
“Thank you Kochou. But don’t you want to spend time with your family?”
“My older sister got called in for an emergency and my younger siblings went out somewhere with their friends,”she replied before going out once more.
“Oh? You’re sister is a doctor? How come you don’t want to be one?”
Shinobu thought about it. She was probably more skilled than ninety percent of the doctors employed at her sister’s place. However, Shinobu never felt comfortable being surrounded by the white walls at the hospital, much preferring being surrounded by her shelves of herbs and plants. It’s not just that. In all honesty, the biggest factor that prevented Shinobu from being a doctor was that she didn’t want to be just “Kanae Kochou’s little sister”. Since as long as she can remember, Shinobu lived in the shadow of her sister. Kanae was gifted with everything. Beauty. Height. Kindness. Patience. Everything Shinobu lacked, her sister had. Her first day shadowing her sister at the hospital after getting her license, Shinobu had made a little girl cry. The girl had cried out for Dr. Kochou and Shinobu angrily replied she was Dr. Kochou. The little girl stopped crying and looked at Shinobu again before continuing to sob hysterically. That night, Kanae comforted the frustrated Shinobu reassuring the younger Kochou that it was her first day and she’ll learn but this happened every single time. Shinobu even made an ex-yakuza cry. Kanae had to come every single time to help remedy Shinobu’s mistakes and after a month, Shinobu had left her career as a doctor behind and opened her pharmacy a few months later.
“It’s because I lack bedside manners,” Shinobu finally responded.
“Tomioka-san, you’re supposed to say ‘No, Kochou. You’re the world’s friendliest person,’” she said trying to imitate Giyuu’s monotone voice. When Shinobu didn’t get a response once more, she stuck her head into the room to see Giyuu curled up in bed fast asleep. She smiled, turned off the lights, and gently closed the door and went back to work.
When Giyuu woke up he was greeted by two things: the sweet smell of Wisteria flowers that indicated to the fact that Shinobu did frequently using this bed and the loud gurgling sound his stomach was making. Giyuu rose from the bed and made his way to the door. When he walked through the door, he saw Shinobu sitting in a chair behind the counter fast asleep. Still half asleep, he tried to make his way towards her to wake her up but instead he ran into the corner of the counter which resulted in Giyuu swearing loudly. The loud noise caused Shinobu to jump up and she looked at Giyuu who was now squatting and clutching his side. Shinobu bursted out in laughter and Giyuu looked at her, still wincing.
“Tomioka-san you really are something,” she said laughing. Jumping down from her seat, Shinobu walked over and offered a hand to Giyuu which he gladly took.
“Did you sleep well?” she asked.
“Yes, thanks to you.”
Shinobu smiled and handed Giyuu a bag of dried flowers.
“This is some chamomile tea,” she explained, “You seemed really tired so I’m assuming you haven’t been sleeping much lately. I hope this helps.”
“Thank you,” Giyuu said, reaching into his pocket trying to look for his wallet.
“You don’t have to pay. I heard Tanjiro really helped out my siblings the other day.”
“Your siblings? Then… Kanao Tsuyuri and Inosuke are your…”
“Then Kanae Kochou is…”
“My older sister.”
Giyuu looked alarm causing Shinobu to laugh at him again.
“Really, Tomioka-san. You must be such an air-head that it took you this long to figure out. Did you not tell by our surnames and the fact I said my sister was a doctor.”
“I don’t really pay attention to people around me…”
“I can tell,” she said smiling at him, “You should make your way home. The sun is going to set and roaming around at night is dangerous.”
“I can protect myself… What about you Kochou? Shouldn’t you get home soon?”
“I think I’ll sleep here tonight. I don’t think I can make it before…” Before she could finish, it was Giyuu’s turn to pull on Shinobu’s arm, dragging her outside the store. He locked the doors behind him and asked where her house was.
“It’s to the right, but Tomioka-san it’s about a thirty minute walk.”
“Then we should hurry up,” Giyuu said squatting down facing away from Shinobu.
“What are you doing?”
“Get on,” he said nonchalantly.
“Are you crazy?!” Shinobu asked, face turning bright red.
“Then do you prefer if I carry you like a princess?” Giyuu asked standing up and opening his arms, ready to carry Shinobu.
“NEITHER!” Shinobu yelled, trying to hide her embarrassment, before pulling him towards the direction of her house.
When the two arrived at Shinobu’s house, or the “Butterfly Estate” as the locals liked to call it, Giyuu was overwhelmed by its size. It was a three story traditional Japanese home with what seems to be a large garden. Giyuu was used to living in small places like Sakonji’s shack in the mountain or the tiny apartment he shares with Tanjiro and Nezuko so Giyuu couldn’t imagine living in such a large place.
“Well then, Tomioka-san thank you for taking me home,” Shinobu said as she bid farewell to Giyuu in front of the gate. Giyuu nodded and was going to walk away when he was stopped by two different voices saying his name. To his right, Tanjiro, Inosuke, Zenitsu, Kanao, and Nezuko were walking towards him while to his left came Kanae with Sanemi next to her holding bags of groceries. Everyone had a confused look on their face except for Kanae who was smiling brightly.
“Ara ara. What a coincidence that everyone is gathered here. Come in. Come in. Let’s have hot pot tonight,” she said pushing the younger ones in through the front door. Sanemi followed her in but not before glaring at Giyuu and patting Shinobu on the head.
“Well then,” Shinobu said once everyone went inside, “I guess you’re invited for dinner tonight Tomioka-san,” gesturing him to go inside. Giyuu went in and closed the front gate after him and was immediately greeted by the warm air of the Kochou home. While Kanae and Sanemi disappeared to the kitchen to prepare dinner, Inosuke started giving the other kids a grand tour of the whole place leaving Giyuu and Shinobu alone at the genkan.
“Here are some slippers and you can leave your coat here,” she said pointing at the coat rack next to him. Shinobu then took Giyuu to the living room and asked if he wanted to watch something before dinner as she browsed several rows of DVDs before ultimately picking out a horror film. The sound of the opening credits caused Inosuke to run down the hallway with the rest of the kids running after him, exhausted, and sat in front of the television. Thirty minutes into the movie, Kanae had called them to come for dinner.
After a rowdy dinner with Inosuke trying to take all the meat for himself and arguing with Tanjiro, Zenitsu pestering Nezuko, Sanemi yelling at everyone to quiet down, Shinobu, Giyuu and the kids went back to finish the movie while Kanae volunteered to wash the dishes and Sanemi was pulled along to do it. Kanae, Shinobu, Giyuu, Tanjiro, and Nezuko sat on the sofa, curled up in a large blanket while Zenitsu and Inosuke were sitting under the kotasu trying to keep warm. When Kanae and Sanemi finished washing the dishes and entered the living room, they noticed the seven of them fast asleep so Kanae walked over to turn off the television. She whispered good night to all of them before going to bed with Sanemi following behind.
I hope you enjoyed this chapter. Feel free to leave comments, I really enjoy reading them. In regards to why some characters haven't shown up yet, please don't worry they will in due time! Hope to see you again :). Until next time.
Chapter 6: The Day We Had Our First Date
Please note I get Kanao and Kanae's names mixed up. A lot. If you catch that please tell me so I can fix it. Also this chapter is the start of spicy stuff in this fic. I understand if you're uncomfortable and decide to not continue but honestly I can't help myself when it comes to Giyuu and Shinobu. Also I pulled out all the shoujo manga tropes that made sense in this chapter. Sorry if it's cringey. But if you liked it, there's probably more coming up. Anyways, like always hope you'll enjoy and after you finish please feel free to leave comments, questions, or concerns. Until next time :)
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
The next morning after Giyuu and Sanemi’s stay at the Kochou resident, the two were notified to report to the Kisatsutai immediately. They’re route there filled with uncomfortable silence as the train was packed that morning and Sanemi had no choice but to stand with Giyuu. This is my chance, Giyuu thought and began searching through his bag for something.
~A Few Hours Ago~
When Giyuu awoke from his slumber, the first thing he noticed was Tanjiro and Nezuko curled up on top of him. He looked at the seat next to him where he remembered Shinobu was last night. Instead of Shinobu, Giyuu saw her little sister, Kanao, hugging a pillow fast asleep. He could hear the sound of a knife making contact with a cutting board and the smell of something cooking coming from the kitchen so Giyuu slowly and carefully got up from the sofa, trying his best not to wake up the kids who were still sleeping, and made his way to the kitchen. There, he saw Shinobu. Sometime during the middle of the night she must’ve woken up and changed thought Giyuu because she was no longer wearing the outfit he saw yesterday. Instead, Shinobu was wearing a T-shirt that was too large on her and a pair of leggings. Her hair was also down revealing the wavy, shoulder length hair that was normally kept hidden.
“Good morning,” he said, his voice was gruff from not being used in a while.
“Good morning,” she replied back, not looking back at him as if she expected him, “Would you like coffee or tea?”
“...Tea.” A minute later Giyuu asked, “Do you need help?”
“No thank you. I’m almost done anyway. I hope you like Western food because we’re having omelets today.”
“Why Western food?”
“My friend... Oh! You might know her. She’s Mitsuri Kanroji, a fellow Hashira. Anyways, she’s been teaching me recently and I usually cook it for my siblings as practice.”
“Yea I know her…” he said, wincing as he was reminded of the fact she threw him out of the building yesterday, “Wait… how do you know I’m a Hashira.”
“You would be surprised by how many of them I know. Mitsuri Kanroji who I’ve known since I was a child. Sanemi Shinazugawa through Nee-chan. Gyomei Himejima because he took care of us for a while after my parents passed. Kyojuro Rengoku through Mitsuri-chan,” she said, lifting a finger every time she named someone. “Mitsuri-chan talks about a man at work who’s ‘so cool but no one gets along with him’ and I overhear Shinazugawa-san complain to Nee-chan about ‘a fucking idiot who thinks highly of himself by ignoring the rest of us’. Honestly Tomioka-san it sounds like you’re quite hated at work,” she says smiling at him.
“I...I’m not hated,” he replies, slightly pouting. I didn’t know everyone thought that , he thought , Besides, everyone is strong enough to be a Hashira. I’m nothing but a fake. It should’ve been Sabito, not me.
“Mmm. That might be debatable,” Shinobu says, “But one thing’s for sure, I don’t hate you, Tomioka-san.”
After the multiple times Giyuu made Shinobu blush, this time Giyuu was the one who turned red causing Shinobu to laugh.
“Well how do I get more people to like me?”
“I don’t know,” she shrugged, “Do something they like?”
“Well then… What does Shinazugawa like? Since he’s here and all…”
“Hmmm…” Shinobu said, thinking, before she smiled and went through the fridge, handing Giyuu a box, “Nee-chan always buys this when he comes over!”
The friendly vibe in the kitchen was cut short when Giyuu’s phone started ringing in his pocket. He picked up and Gyomei was on the other line.
“Giyuu. Emergency meeting at 10 a.m. Can you make it?” he asked. Giyuu looked at the clock on the kitchen wall. It was 7:30 a.m. meaning Giyuu had roughly two and a half hours to prepare. That was enough time.
“Roger,” he replied and Gyomei hung up.
“Was it work,” Shinobu asked. Giyuu nodded in response. “Well, I suggest you brush your teeth and take a shower. I’ll look for something you can wear so I can iron out your uniform as you eat.”
“There’s no need,” he started to protest. Him and his family already ate and slept at Shinobu’s house last night and he didn’t want to be an even bigger burden.
“Nonsense,” she said, trying to push him towards the bathroom to no avail, “You don’t want to show up to work with your uniform all wrinkled.”
Giyuu looked down at the uniform he was still wearing and made a face. She was right. Giyuu quickly turned around to face Shinobu. The sudden movement startled her almost causing her to fall but Giyuu grabbed her arm in time and helped her regain her balance.
“Where’s the bathroom?” he asked and Shinobu gladly lead him there.
“Shinazagawa. Here,” Giyuu said handing Sanemi the box Shinobu gave him earlier.
“Huh? What the fuck is this?” Sanemi asked before opening the box as Giyuu watched smiling eagerly.
Sanemi looked at the contents in the box and his facial expression darkened.
“Shinazagawa. Look it’s ohagi. You like ohagi right?”
Sanemi turned towards Giyuu, one hand grabbing his collar. The passengers around them started to panic and slowly inched away from them as much as possible.
“You bitch. You wanna die?” Before Sanemi could punch Giyuu the train had announced it had arrived at Kisatsutai Station and Sanemi left the train with Giyuu trailing behind.
“Oya? It’s quite rare to see the two of you come in together,” Kyojuro remarked as Sanemi and Giyuu walked through the front door. The two didn’t respond to him as the three of them walked towards the conference room. Sanemi took off his coat, throwing it on his chair, unbuttoned the first two buttons of his shirt, and put his feet on the table. The other Hashiras looked at Sanemi then to Giyuu trying to get some sort of response from the two of them but they ignored them as they sat in their seats waiting for Gyomei to arrive.
When Gyomei finally arrived, all eyes were on him as everyone was curious why they were called in for a meeting on this early Sunday morning.
“Good morning. To keep this meeting brief, let’s start with what I called you in for. The suspects that attacked Tanjiro Kamado and his friends have died early this morning in their cell,” Gyomei said passing out photos of Susamaru and Yahaba’s dead body, “As you can see, the word “demon” is written in their blood with three diagonal marks possibly a reference to the slash marks found on the bodies of previous victims.”
“Does that mean what I think it means?” Sanemi said. Gyomei nodded.
“This could mean that the people we were looking for all this time are connected to the infamous Oni group.”
“But, they’ve been dormant for so many years… Why are they suddenly showing up now?” Mitsuri chimed in.
“I do not know. But if this is the work of the Oni, then we must tell Oyakata-sama and secure his safety,” Gyomei said, tears streaming down his face, “Anyways, you are dismissed.”
“Kanroji,” Giyuu said as the rest of the Hashiras were leaving. Surprised by Giyuu suddenly calling her name, her face turned red and she began to sweat as she slowly turned around to look at him. Giyuu offered the poor girl his handkerchief and she gladly accepted.
“What’s wrong, Tomioka-san…” she said, wiping the sweat from her face.
“I heard you knew Kochou…”
“Shinobu-chan or Kanae-san,” Mitsuri asked cocking her head in confusion. Giyuu never started conversations with her before and to think their first one could possibly be about her best friend! This time Mitsuri started to sweat from excitement. She could feel her “love sensors” tingling.
“Shinobu Kochou…” replied Giyuu. Mitsuri squealed so loud, Giyuu had to cover his ears. Mitsuri grabbed his hands, looking at Giyuu with sparkling eyes.
“Yes! What about Shinobu-chan!”
“Um…what does she like?” This time Giyuu started to sweat. He’s never talked about girls before, not even with Sabito as he was often disinterested in them.
“Umm… Good question. I really don’t know either. Shinobu-chan doesn’t really talk about herself much.”
“Oh, don’t look so sad Tomioka-san! I’m sure she’ll appreciate anything you’ll give her!”
“I’ve never given a gift to someone before…”
“O-oh,” Mitsuri suddenly felt sorry for Giyuu, “Um… how about jewelry? Maybe some flowers like a bouquet of roses! Or you can treat her out to a fancy meal!”
Giyuu nodded, making a mental note of everything Mitsuri was saying. He really appreciated what she did yesterday and wanted to return the favor. Since today was technically his day off as well as a Sunday meaning Shinobu wasn’t at the pharmacy, he set out to town to buy everything Mitsuri recommended.
Today the Kochou household was busy cleaning in preparation for some kids from the local orphanage visit tomorrow. This orphanage was the same one where the sisters adopted Kanao almost a decade ago and Inosuke a few years after that. The two, Inosuke mostly, had befriended many of them and were sad to leave them but the Kochou sisters arranged for some of their friends to come visit every month.
“UAAHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!” screamed Inosuke as he and Kanao were wiping the floor of the veranda.
“Inosuke, be careful!” Kanao yelled but she was too late as Inosuke couldn’t control his speed and crashed into one of the wooden pillars supporting the roof.
“Ara ara. Sounds like they’re excited for tomorrow, right Shinobu?” Kanae asked turning over to her sister as she handed her a freshly cleaned plate that was in need of drying. Shinobu was lost in thought and didn’t reply to her sister.
“Yes?” asked Kanae curiously. It wasn’t like Shinobu to be so lost in thought. Something must be serious if she’s acting like this, Kanae thought.
“How did you know Shinazugawa-san was the one for you? You and him are the complete opposite. You’re so nice and elegant and well Shinazugawa-san is… is.... Shinazugawa-san,” Shinobu said trying to not offend her sister’s boyfriend of five years.
“Ara ara. Shinobu are you having boy troubles? I understand. You’re at the ripe age of 23. I was like that when I was your age,” she said teasing Shinobu, “So who’s the lucky boy? Is it Giyuu-san?
“NO!” yelled Shinobu. She could feel her entire face heating up.
“Giyuu-san is a nice boy. Albeit a little bit quiet but I’m sure he’ll treat my precious Shinobu well.”
“NEE-CHAN! I TOLD YOU IT’S NOT THAT!” Shinobu wanted to cry. She’s never felt her face turn this red before and she can’t believe it’s like this because of a certain air head she just met.
“Oh, but Shinobu you were clinging onto him so tightly last night,” Kanae said pulling out her phone from her back pocket, showing Shinobu a picture. Sure enough it was a picture of her clinging onto Giyuu’s stomach, head resting on his side as one of his arms was holding her and the other was around the Kamado siblings. In the corner, Shinobu could see Kanao clinging onto Shinobu’s legs. Shinobu’s face did the impossible and turned ten shades redder than it was before.
“NEE-CHAN GIVE ME THE PHONE! LET ME DELETE THAT CURSED PHOTO FROM THIS WORLD!” Shinobu yelled, jumping to get it from her sister. Hearing the commotion, Inosuke and Kanao came into the kitchen.
“Shinobu nee-chan, Kanae nee-chan, what’s wrong?” Kanao asked.
“Are you hurt?” Inosuke asked, a poorly wrapped bandage (not Kanao’s strong suit) barely covering the wound he got from running into the pillar.
“Inosuke! Kanao! Look at what Nee-chan took yesterday,” walking over to show her younger siblings.
“Nee-chan! Please stop!” Shinobu yelled, trying to prevent her sister from showing their younger siblings the photo. But alas, Kanae was able to and when the two saw it, Kanao turned red with Shinobu and Inosuke was furious.
“HOW DARE HALF-HALF MAN DO THAT TO SHINOBU NEE-CHAN!” he yelled running towards the front door.
“Wait, Inosuke where are you going?” asked Kanao.
“To beat that son of a bitch and skin hi-” Inosuke stopped as soon as he opened the door and the three sisters popped their head out of the kitchen, concerned. There, standing in front of Inosuke was Giyuu Tomioka with the biggest bouquet of roses any of them have ever seen. Kanae was so excited and skipped walked over to the front door.
“Good afternoon, Giyuu-san. What brings you here again?” She said smiling.
“I’m here for Koch--Shinobu.”
“SHINOBU!” Kanae yelled as Shinobu was trying to escape and find a hiding spot. She turned around and greeted Giyuu with a forced smile.
“These are for you,” lifting the bouquet up, “May I come in?”
“Come in! Come in,” Kanae said. Giyuu walked in and took off his shoes. He walked over towards Shinobu, who was still in the middle of the hallway, trying her best not to make eye contact with him. When he gave her the flowers, Shinobu murmured a “thanks” and Giyuu stood there watching her.
“Kochou, are you sick? Your face is bright red.” Kanae could barely contain her laughter as she watched everything that was happening in front of her. She felt like she was playing matchmaker for her sister and was enjoying every second of it.
“Don’t mind her Giyuu-san. Shinobu’s just embarrassed because she’s never had a boy do this for her before.” Giyuu looked confused. Why? He thought. Kochou is easily one of the prettiest girls out there so it’s surprising to hear that.
“Umm… Also, Kou...Shinobu.” he needed to remember Kanae was also a Kochou too, “Are you free later?”
“Do you want to have dinner or something?”
“YES SHE DOES!!!!” Kanae was getting too excited and Kanao and Inosuke tried to pull her away before Shinobu gets angrier and attacks her.
“Then… I’ll come by again later at 6,” Giyuu said, oblivious to the fact that Shinobu wanted to punch him for being so tactless and her sister for being like this. When Giyuu left, Kanae was running around the house screaming. Inosuke joined as well but he had no idea why except that it looked fun. Kanao went over to Shinobu, who was sitting on the stairs, face buried in her hands to hide her embarrassment, and patted her shoulder.
At around 4, Shinobu was seated in front of her older sister’s vanity, a whole array of makeup in front of her.
“Nee-chan, this isn’t a date. It’s just a casual dinner between friends.”
“Mhmm,” Kanae replied, not listening to her younger sister as she looked around her drawers for more makeup. Kanao and Inosuke came in with a bunch of Shinobu’s clothes.
“Hey! What are you two doing?” Shinobu yelled.
“Did you two pick the best looking ones?” Kanae asked and the two nodded before Inosuke ran off, uninterested in watching her eldest sister play dress up with Shinobu. Kanao stayed behind to help. Kanae walked over to the pile of clothes that were now on her bed and started going through one by one.
“No. Nope. Uh uh.” she said, throwing the rejected clothes onto a new pile on the phone, “Shinobu, don’t you have anything more girly?”
“You know I don’t like girly clothes.”
“Oh, how about these?” Kanae asked, holding up a tan turtleneck and a maroon skirt, “Come on try it on!” After she tried it on, Kanae nodded her head, smiling, and Kanao looked at Shinobu in awe.
“Shinobu nee-chan, it might be cold so please wear these as well…” Kanao said handing her a pair of tights and a dark army green pea coat.
“Oooh, what about matching underwear just in case?” Kanae asked.
“No need!” Shinobu yelled trying to cover Kanao’s ears.
After Shinobu’s outfit was decided, Kanae put Shinobu in front of her vanity again and started to do her makeup while Kanao brushed her wavy hair as Kanae decided it was best to leave it down. It took almost two hours and Shinobu was finally done just in time for the doorbell to ring. Shinobu walked down the stairs to open the door for Giyuu. When Giyuu saw her, he blushed a little. Every time Giyuu saw her, he was always baffled by her beauty and this time was no different.
“Are you ready?” he asked. Shinobu nodded and told her siblings she was departing as they watched her leave.
Giyuu had taken Shinobu out to a tiny traditional Japanese restaurant that was about a ten minute bus ride from her house. It was quite quaint Shinobu thought. It was different from the usual fancy places her family’s hospital’s business partners usually held events at. Instead of stuck up men in suits, this place was filled with middle-aged office workers who were slightly intoxicated from beer.
“Ah, welcome,” said the owner/chef, “How many of ya?” Giyuu lifted two fingers and the man gestured to the two seats in front of him, smiling. Giyuu made his way to their suit and Shinobu followed suit. A woman handed the two a menu each and bowed before attending to another customer.
“Excuse me, one salmon daikon,” Giyuu told the chef without looking at the menu.
“Aight,” the chef said, “And for you missy?”
“Oh!” Giyuu’s sudden order startled Shinobu and she quickly glanced at the menu before deciding to get a kitsune udon.
“So, Tomioka-san. What’s with the sudden invitation?” she asked, eyeing his outfit. A black Adidas track jacket, white T-shirt, and blue jeans. Maybe I overdressed? She thought, slightly disappointed.
“I wanted to thank you…” he replied reaching into a pocket in his jacket and pulled out a box with a red ribbon tied on top, placing it in front of her.
“What is this?” she said opening the box. Inside, it revealed a silver ring with a tiny butterfly encrusted in amethyst.
“Wow, what a nice boyfriend ya got there dearie,” the waitress said giving the pair their tea.
“H-h-he…” Shinobu was so stunned her brain wasn’t working properly.
“Hahahaha,” laughed the owner, his boisterous laughter caught the attention of the entire restaurant, “Youngsters these days…” he said giving Giyuu and Shinobu their meal.
“Excuse me, one beer please!” Shinobu said, hoping alcohol can help her get through this night.
Giyuu watched as Shinobu tried to order her third mug of beer, clearly intoxicated. Giyuu tried to stop her but she swatted his hand hand away.
“You should listen to ya boyfriend, missy,” the owner said laughing. Shinobu turned to look at Giyuu, glassy purple eyes met his blue ones before she pouted and turned her head away.
“Noooooo, he’s a meanie,” she said crossing her arms. Giyuu gave her a confused look before paying for the meal. Shinobu wouldn’t budge from her seat so Giyuu tried to pull her.
“Carry me!” she said, acting like a spoiled princess. The whole restaurant watched as Giyuu begrudgingly put Shinobu on his back enjoying the young couple.
“Why do you look so angry? Last time you willingly offered to carry me,” she said. Her breathe tickling his ear, making Giyuu blush and almost lose balance. It had started to drizzle and Giyuu hoped he could bring her home before it started to get worse
“Yes, you are”
“...” Giyuu was too tired to deal with her childish games. All of a sudden, the rain got worse and Giyuu wanted to curse the gods. Just my luck, he thought, looking for anywhere they can take shelter from the rain. The only place that was open at the moment was a hotel or another bar. Giyuu really didn’t want to try stopping Shinobu from trying to drink more so he carried her to the hotel and asked for a room. As soon as he opened the door, Shinobu jumped off his back, ran towards the bed, and began jumping up and down.
“Weeee” she said. Giyuu was thankful Shinobu was wearing tights as her skirt bounced along with her.
“Kochou.,” he said. “I don’t think your siblings would like it if I brought you home sick. Here, you can change into this,” passing her a hotel robe.
“OOOOOkay,” she said beginning to take off her sweater. Giyuu panicked as his eyes made contact with her stomach and part of her bra. He stopped her and pulled down her sweater telling her to change in the bathroom. She nodded and skipped towards the bathroom. Note to self: Kochou is an extreme lightweight. As soon as he heard Shinobu lock the door, Giyuu sighed, changed into another robe, and plopped onto the double bed. He was so exhausted and closed his eyes. Once, Kochou comes out, I’ll take a quick shower and sleep on the sofa .
“G-I-Y-U-U,” the sound of someone calling his name caused Giyuu’s eyes to open and he stared in shock as Shinobu was sitting on top of him, still drunk.
“Giyuu, do you like me,” she said, sounding quite sad.
“Yea… we’re friends aren’t we?”
“So is this not a date?”
“No… I told you I wanted to thank…” before he could finish his sentence, he noticed a tear slowly making its down Shinobu’s face. “Wait, why are you crying Kochou?”
“Here I thought I was finally going on a date. I let my sisters dress me up for two hours. I could’ve said no. I could’ve stopped them but...but deep down in my heart I was hoping it was a date,” she said, unable to stop her tears now.
“Koch--” Before he could finish, Shinobu grabbed his shoulders and pulled him in for a kiss, teeth colliding with each other. Giyuu tried to pull away but Shinobu pulled him in closer and stuck her tongue inside his mouth and began searching every nook and cranny of his mouth. While Shinobu was intoxicated with alcohol, Giyuu was starting to get intoxicated by her smell. From this distance, he could smell the sweet scent of Wisteria flowers that he could smell from her store. Deepening the kiss, Giyuu leaned in to smell more of this addicting scent. Finally their kiss ended as the two of them had to stop for air. Their robes coming slightly undone from all the touching that happened in between. Shinobu’s robe left little for Giyuu’s imagination causing him to blush and look away. Shinobu put her hands on his cheeks and moved his head so it was facing her. She got up on her knees so they were not the same height as she looked him in the eye.
“Giyuu, I think I love you,” she said with such earnesty in her eyes for a second Giyuu forgot she was still wasted. He was about to respond when Shinobu fell backwards, the alcohol finally knocking her out. Giyuu sat there stunned before helping Shinobu get under the covers and tucking her in. As he walked towards the sofa, he turned around to look at her one last time before trying his hardest to fall asleep.
I bumped up the ages of the Hashiras and bumped down Kanao a year in case it wasn't clear.
http://www.marishe.com/reviewView.firstname.lastname@example.org&brd_no=3724 <--- reference photo for Shinobu's outfit for this chapter
When Shinobu woke up the next morning, it felt like she was run over by a truck. Opening one eye, she looked around and noticed the unfamiliar surroundings.
Where is this and just how much did I drink last night? She thought, clutching her head. She decided to get up and investigate her surroundings and found Giyuu sleeping on the sofa.
“Tomioka-san?!” Her scream did not wake up the man however and he just turned away from her, putting a pillow over his head trying to prevent her voice from dragging him away from his dreams. Irritated, Shinobu started poking Giyuu in the back.
“Tomioka-san. Hey, Tomioka-san, you better have a good reason for this. Hey Tomioka-san?”
Giyuu finally turned around after several minutes of poking and stared at her still half asleep.
“What is it?” she said.
“...you should fix your robe…” he managed to say nonchalantly before falling back to sleep. Shinobu was confused. What robe? She thought and looked down. Sure enough, she was no longer wearing the clothes she wore last night but instead a thin hotel robe that was clumsily tied and starting to fall off. Shinobu could feel her ears turn red as she quickly readjusted the garment.
“What the hell happened last night?” Shinobu wanted to scream but it was still early in the morning, 6:40 a.m. to be exact according to the clock on the wall, and she didn’t want anyone filing noise complaints on her.
Giyuu was now fully awake. He took one look at Shinobu’s, remembering the incident last night, he felt his face become hot. He tried his hardest to avoid eye contact as he rubbed the sleep from his eyes. Not wanting to embarrass Shinobu by telling her what she did during her drunken state last night he murmured a quiet “nothing” and tried to make an escape. Shinobu noticed the intense red that covered his face and chased him around the hotel room demanding Giyuu to tell her what happened. After several minutes of playing tag, Shinobu finally caught up and pulled him onto the floor.
“T-o-m-i-o-k-a-san.” Giyuu was on the floor looking up at Shinobu who had one foot on his chest. Despite the smile she was giving him, Giyuu could tell one wrong answer could cause him to end up at her sister’s hospital. “Tomioka-san, I hope you have a good reason why we’re here.”
“You kept drinking and when I tried to stop you, you looked like you were going to kill me. Finally, you stopped and I had to drag you out of the restaurant. I was going to take you home but it started pouring and we ended up here.”
“Then you started kissing me and before something bad happened, you passed out.”
When Giyuu finished his retelling of last night’s event, Shinobu had her eyes closed as if trying to process everything. Suddenly, she got up and made her way to the bathroom leaving Giyuu sitting there puzzled. She emerged a few minutes later wearing the clothes from last night and started opening the door.
“Where are you going?”
“Home.” She said in an instant. Even from so far away, Giyuu could see the hint of red that covered her ears.
“Wait. I’ll take you home,” he replied, scrambling to the bathroom to change into his clothes.
“BASTARD, WHAT THE FUCK DID YOU DO TO SHINOBU NEE-CHAN,” Inosuke yelled, trying to jump Giyuu as soon as Shinobu opened the door. Luckily, Giyuu had somewhat expected this to happen and dodged the young teenager. He looked into the house and saw all three siblings were standing in front of the entrance waiting for Shinobu’s arrival. Just how early does this family get up? It’s not even 7 yet , Giyuu thought, accidentally making eye contact with Kanae who smiled at him, giving him a thumbs up while Shinobu was trying to calm Inosuke.
“I’m sorry for not bringing her home last night,” he said bowing, “It was raining and some other things happened so we had to get shelter at a hotel. If you excuse me, I have to get going now.”
Kanao and Kanae waved farewell to Giyuu as Shinobu was holding Inosuke down so he couldn’t get one last hit before Giyuu left. When he finally disappeared out of sight, Shinobu sighed a breath of relief and released Inosuke before making eye contact with Kanae who looked at her with expectant eyes.
“We didn’t do anything,” Shinobu said, “You guys should get ready now. You still have school and work today.
“Okay,” Inosuke and Kanao said in unison, going towards their rooms to get changed into their school uniforms. Kanae, however, stayed behind smiling at Shinobu.
“I don’t believe you,” she said in a sing song voice, following Shinobu to her room.
“Nee-chan, get out. I have to change and open the store,” she said exasperated.
“Not until you tell me everything!”
“We ate dinner. It started raining. We went to a hotel room. It’s like what Tomioka-san said.”
“Well, at least that’s what I think happened,” Shinobu replied. She stopped what she was doing and looking down at the floor for a brief second lost in thought but quickly continued to look for a yukata she could wear today. “Nee-chan, what about this one today?” she asked holding up a maroon yukata with a checkered pattern.
“Shinobu, stop changing the topic.”
“I don’t know what you mean,” Shinobu said, starting to change into her work attire.
“Something definitely happened. Call it a sister’s intuition. Be honest now Shinobu.”
“Tomioka-san hates me.”
“How so?” Kanae cocked her head in confusion. Even though the man doesn’t say much, Kanae could tell he didn’t hate her sister. Mildly annoyed sometimes? Yes. But hating her cute little sister? Impossible.
“I-” Before she finished her sentence, she paused and Kanae noticed her eyes beginning to shift around the room.
“Shinobu, you know you can tell me anything…” Kanae walked towards Shinobu and held her hand for comfort.
“I got drunk last night… and according to Tomioka-san I kissed him.”
“And?” Kanae asked, her eyes sparkling with excitement. My little sister’s first kiss! If Shinobu would allow Kanae to get excited, she would be doing cartwheels right now.
“And nothing happened.” Shinobu let go of her sister’s hand, sensing the weird vibe Kanae was giving off. “Or at least that’s as much he was willing to tell me. What if he never wants to see me because of this?” When Kanae opened her mouth to speak, Shinobu cut her off by adding, “I’m not saying this because I like him.”
“Then why would it bother you so much?”
“It doesn’t.” Truthfully, the thought of not seeing Giyuu again made Shinobu’s heart hurt. Despite having just met a few months ago, it feels like they’ve known each other for a long time. His presence was so calming and Shinobu felt like she could spend hours talking to him while he listened but she could never tell her sister that. “You should go soon. Don’t you have a meeting today?”
When Kanae arrived to work, she was immediately whisked away to the conference room to meet with several shareholders about the future of the hospital. Despite being the head surgeon, Kanae was allowed to attend these meetings due to the fact that the hospital was founded by her ancestors and when her parents passed away, they asked for her to inherit it.
She hated going to these meetings. It was nothing but a bunch of sweaty old men yelling at each other in order to increase their own personal wealth. However, today there was a man she’s never seen before at the meeting. According to his introduction, he was the heir to Eternal Paradise Enterprise, a relatively new pharmaceutical company who was interested in working with Butterfly hospital on a research project they were working on. After the meeting ended, Kanae was ready to head back to her office when a hand stopped her. She turned around and was met with rainbow eyes looking at her.
“It’s a pleasure to meet you, Kochou-san. My name is Doma.” He lifted her hand and kissed it.
“Ah, it’s a pleasure.” She said, quickly pulling her hand away without trying to offend him.
“I must say, the rumors about you being a beauty is true.” He grabbed a lock of Kanae’s hair and his eyes became fixated on it as he began twirling it around his fingers. Kanae pulled her hair back causing Doma to look at her. Kanae felt a chill go up her spine. She gripped the folder she was holding harder causing the papers to wrinkle slightly from the sudden force.
“Uhh… I have to go now.” She pointed towards the door where another hospital staff was waiting for her. “Good-bye, Doma-san.”
“Ah. I apologize for keeping you for so long Kochou-san.” He smiled at her and waved goodbye as she left. When Kanae was out of sight, Doma put his hand down and a maniacal smile replaced the fake one he gave Kanae just moments ago.
When she returned to her office, Kanae was greeted with the mountain of paperwork that seemed to appear on her desk as she was away. She sat down and looked up at the piles of paper. She looked at her wristwatch. One more hour until her lunch break.
“You can do this Kanae,” she murmured to herself, trying to hype herself up. She continued to read the file for her upcoming patient but she couldn’t seem to get past that one sentence she’s been rereading for the past ten minutes. All of a sudden, Kanae’s stomach rumbled and she slumped over her desk. When a knock came from her office door, Kanae immediately sat up straight.
“Come in,” she said in her most professional voice.
“Yo, princess!” Kanae’s eyes lit up when she saw the person enter through the door.
“Sanemi!” Sanemi closed the door behind him and sat in one of the empty chairs in front of Kanae’s desk. He saw the pile on top of her desk and whistled.
“Looks like you got your hands full.” He leaned in and gave her a kiss. “Aren’t ya tired?”
“Not anymore,” she said, smiling. “What brings you here? I thought you had a mission today.”
“Yea, but I finished early and was in the area.” Sanemi began to twiddle with one of the nicknacks Kanae kept on her desk to entertain kids. “How’s the little butterfly doing?”
“You mean Shinobu? She’s been doing fine except something happened last night and she’s a little sad.”
“Does it got something to do with fucking Tomioka? Why the hell is she suddenly so close with him. Fucking Kanroji’s been fangirling about them to anyone who’ll listen since yesterday.”
“Mhmm. They went out together last night and didn’t come back until this morning.” Kanae’s eyes never left her patient’s report until she heard something break and looked up. Sanemi was seething, the toy in his hand broken to pieces.
“What?! Is she dating him of all people?!” Kanae looked him straight in the eye. Her usually calm eyes filled with anger.
“Shinobu is a grown woman and she can date whoever she wants! If you are here to insult her and who she spends time with, I suggest you leave.” Sanemi stared in shock as his girlfriend rarely raised her voice. Fuck. I really messed up big time.
“I’m not. It’s just-” Sanemi looked at Kanae, who no longer had her signature smile, and gulped. I really need to choose my words wisely here or I’m fucked. “I don’t know about Tomioka. Been working with that guy for years now and like- you know… I care for Shinobu and stuff so all I want is for her to be happy…” He twiddled his thumbs as his face turned bright red. Sanemi wasn’t one to openly share his feelings and this rare experience made him nervous.
Kanae’s eyes softened. She gave a pleased hum and continued to go back to work. Seeing the satisfaction on her face, Sanemi wiped the sweat from his face. Thinking back to all the missions he’s ever been on for the Kisatsutai, making Kanae Kochou mad is hands down the scariest thing he’s ever done.
“So, Sanemi…” Sanemi jumped in his seat hoping and praying she wasn’t going to chew him out again. “Where shall we have lunch,” she asked, as she put her files away.
The two exited the hospital making their way towards a cafe that recently opened. The air around them was quite cold and Kanae, despite dressing in several layers was shivering. Sanemi saw this and bashfully took her hand and held it in the pocket of his uniform. Kanae laughed at this gesture.
“What?!” Sanemi turned towards her. His face was completely red. Kanae’s eyes softened as she looked at her boyfriend. Despite all the scars that covered his face and body and how tough he usually acts, the Sanemi Shinazugawa she knew was a total softie for those he cared about.
“Nothing.” She replied, scooting closer to him. “How are you still so warm when half your chest is exposed like that.” She eyed her boyfriend’s button up that had the first three buttons unbuttoned.
“It’s not that cold. Besides, you love my muscles. You can’t keep your fucking hands off them when we-” Kanae punched him before he could finish. The sudden force caused him to buckle slightly and the passersby looked at the young couple before going back to their business.
When they finally arrived at the cafe and were seated by the staff, Sanemi asked Kanae how was work today.
“Oh, you know. Same old. Same old.” She replied as her eyes danced around the menu. “I did meet the heir of Eternal Paradise.”
“Hmmm. How was it?” Kanae debated whether or not she should tell Sanemi what happened. On one hand, she worried her boyfriend would go murder the man for what he did and she’d rather see Sanemi like this rather behind bars. However, she felt she’d feel much safer telling him what had happened.
“Oh… He was fine.” She hoped he couldn’t catch her lying. “Are you ready to order?”
He looked up from the menu and nodded. “That’s nice. I heard the man was a fucking creep. Buddy of mine says he holds these parties where he hires beautiful women. Few months later they go missing.” He looked at Kanae who was breaking into a cold sweat. “Babe, are ya sure you wanna do business with him?”
“I...don’t know. He’s paying us well and the hospital could use the extra money to buy better equipment. And the research he is investing in sounds quite promising, but there’s something about him that I don’t like.”
“Simple. Tell him to fuck off,” Sanemi told her before telling the waitress who just arrived his order. Kanae told the girl her order as well before falling silent.
“I-I think I’m gonna take him up on the offer. Thanks though Sanemi.” She gave him a quick peck on the cheek. Sanemi took her hand and rested his cheek on it.
“If he does anything to you, remember I’ll murder his ass right there and then.” Kanae laughed and nodded.
“Oh, by the way. The little ones from the orphanage are coming today. Do you want to come see them?”
“Thanks, but I gotta get home. Got another mission early in the morning tomorrow.” Kanae frowned.
“Again? This is the fourth one in the past two weeks.” Sanemi smiled and ruffled her hair.
“Yeah, I really wanna see the little shrimps too.” Sanemi has always been good with kids and Kanae was sure the Sumi, Kiyo, and Naho would be so disappointed hearing Sanemi wasn’t going to come. Their food finally arrived and the two ate in silence a question popped into Kanae’s head.
“Hey Sanemi.” Sanemi who was chewing on a piece of meat looked up at her.
“How many children should we have?” She asked, smiling innocently. Sanemi was caught off guard by the question, he accidentally swallowed the meat to quickly causing him to start coughing.
“What?!” He asked after chugging his glass of water. His face was beet red. “What’s with the sudden attack, Kanae?”
“I’m just curious. It’s always been a question I wanted to ask and we’ve been together for the past five years,” she glanced at him hoping he would take the hint before continuing, “Besides, you’re great with handling kids so I assumed you’d like your own one day.”
“I-I-I” His eyes began to shift around the restaurant. “I’m fine with how many you want.”
“How about seven?”
“W-why seven?” He asked. Oh my god! Someone make this fucking conversation end!
“I want a big family. Wouldn’t it be nice? It was just Shinobu and I for the longest time and for you it was just you and Genya.”
“Y-yea. That would be nice” He looked down, smiling, and remembering the happy moments he used to share with his mother and siblings before they were slain by someone from Demon. He looked at Kanae once again. This time his face looked serious. “But Kanae. Can ya wait for me for one more year. Once everything becomes less hectic and I’m closer to catching the fucking bastard that killed our parents, will you welcome me to your family.”
Kanae held his hand. “Silly, you’ve been coming to my house almost everyday. You’re already welcomed.”
When they finished, the two began to go back to the hospital. When they arrived at the front doors, Kanae turned around to Sanemi, looking at him lovingly. She pushed a strand of hair that was tickling his eyes before leaning forward and kissing him on the lips.
“Have fun at work!” Sanemi yelled as Kanae made her way into the building.
“I won’t!” She yelled back. As she rode the elevator up to her office, one of the nurses beside her asked what happened.
“Oh, nothing.” Kanae replied, smiling as she replayed the scene from the cafe in her head over and over again.
Sorry this took so long. I had finals and someone called in sick at work so I didn't have any free time to write. I hope you liked this chapter. Feel free to leave any comments, questions, and concerns! Until next time~
Chapter 8: Extra:The Day I Fell in Love
Merry late Christmas and happy early New Year! This is a SaneKana chapter about their meeting +more. I wanted to post this on Christmas but I got busy with work and really sick. I wanted to post something happy for the holidays and before the year ended because I'm planning the next chapter to be a sad one (no one dies though so don't worry). Also, I wanted to apologize to my mother because her child has sinned for this chapter. My face was beet red the entire time I wrote it. Anyways... hope you enjoy and feel free to leave any comments, questions, and concerns.
Sanemi Shinazugawa had always hated hospitals. The bleak white walls. The blinding fluorescent lights. The smell of medicine. The place where he lost his mother and siblings. If he could, he would have preferred to never step inside a hospital again. That is, until he met Kanae Kochou. When they first met, Sanemi had gotten seriously injured during a raid and Gyomei had to force him into the ambulance.
“Sanemi-kun you’re not able to fix this one yourself,” He said before muttering some prayers.
“F-fucking watch me,” Sanemi managed to say before he fainted.
When he woke up, he expected to be greeted by the usual white walls or bright lights but instead as soon as he opened his eyes he was greeted by a smiling face.
“Hello,” the woman said. The first thing he noticed was how full of life her eyes were. Both of their eyes were a pale purple color yet somehow her eyes sparkled with hope and excitement while his has been lifeless for a majority of his life.
“Hello,” she said again after receiving no response. Sanemi continued to look at the woman as she continued to smile at him.
“Fucking weirdo…” He murmured before closing his eyes, hoping she would get the hint and go away. Sanemi heard the shuffling of her clothes and smiled. Finally some peace and quiet. He opened his eyes and to his horror was met with the same purple eyes as before directly above him.
“Hello. I’m Kanae Kochou, your doctor for today,” she said again. She stood up straight and flipped through her clipboard. “Hmmm…. Shinazugawa-san. Trauma to the head. Hmmm….It also seems like you broke a couple of ribs and a fracture on your right arm.” She showed him an x-ray of his arm and chest while pointing at the fracture sites with her ballpoint pen. “You’re going to have to stay at the hospital for a few weeks.”
“I’m going home…” Sanemi tried to sit up but was immediately yanked down. The woman frowned.
“I wouldn’t do that if I was you. You’re painkillers should be wearing down just about now. Himejima-san also told me you might try to escape so he came by when you were still passed out to handcuff you to the bed.” She pointed to the shiny handcuffs attached to his left arm. “Just be a good boy and lay here while I get someone to give you more painkillers.” And with that Kanae left the room, leaving Sanemi alone to curse Gyomei and Kanae to hell.
Sanemi sat quietly in one of the armchairs in Kanae’s desk, fiddling with a knick knack he found on her desk as she sat across from him, quietly reading his charts.
During his month long stay at the hospital, he’s gotten close with the young doctor. They would bond over stories about their younger siblings. Sanemi rarely talked about his younger brother, Genya, to anyone. The two had a falling out when their mother and siblings died. The Shinazugawa family finally thought they would have a happy life after leaving their abusive father but one day, Sanemi’s mother and five younger siblings were murdered by a member of the infamous Demon gang. Sanemi tried his hardest to save them but couldn’t and when Genya came home from school to see his older brother covered in the blood of their family members, the younger Shinazugawa, too young to comprehend the situation, blamed his brother for the murders. Sanemi didn’t know why he would share something so personal with the young doctor, maybe it was because her parents also died because of someone from the Demon gang. Nevertheless, Sanemi has never felt this much of a connection with someone since he was a small child.
“Well Sanemi-kun, I’m proud to announce that you are free to leave!” She put her hands together and smiled at him. “Don’t overdo it at work though, okay? You still need to make sure your bones are stronger than before.”
“Can…” He started to get red. I don’t want to lose this friendship. I haven’t gotten along with someone like this in so long. Ask her for her number you idiot!
“Can?” She repeated, tilting her head in confusion.
“C-can you tell Gyomei that?” Fucking hell! Just ask her damn it!
“Oh...Okay!” She scribbled a reminder messily on a sticky note. “Take care then Sanemi-kun.” Sanemi got up and waved farewell to Kanae and opened the door. He snuck one more glance at Kanae who was phoning her assistant before making his way towards the front doors of the hospital. FUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU
Sanemi hasn’t seen or talked to Kanae in about three months. None of his work-related injuries were severe enough that it warranted a trip to the hospital. The Kisatsutai also had close relations with Butterfly Hospital, many of its employees had their health insurance there so every time Sanemi had his monthly check ups to see if he’s fit enough to be a Hashira, he tried to look for the familiar long, black hair or purple eyes. Finally, he decided to work up the courage to ask the resident who was giving him his check up.
“What the fuck do you want with my sister you creep?” Sanemi looked down at the small figure (who was almost a foot shorter than him) in front of him. They looked up and pale purple eyes met darker purple ones. Who the fuck is this brat?
The air in the room became ice cold as a few new recruits who unfortunately had to share the same room as Sanemi for their checkup watched in horror. One of the nurses carefully slipped out of the room, searching for the only person who could fix this mess.
“Huh?!” Sanemi’s eyes darkened and the veins on his head slowly became visible. “Who the fuck let this kid walk in?”
“This ‘kid’ had been examining you for the past five minutes. Should I get your fucking eyes checked out while I’m at it?” The girl asked, whipping out a flashlight and teasing Sanemi by turning it on and off.
“Bitch!” Sanemi grabbed the girl’s color and was about to say something else when the door to the room slammed open. All eyes were focused at the door and the woman who was slouched over, huffing and puffing.
“Shinobu! B-bed side manners!” The woman managed to say as she held the door frame for support. Finally, she looked up and her eyes widened. “Sanemi-kun? What are you doing to my sister?” Horrified, Sanemi let go of Shinobu who ran behind her sister.
“Nee-chan. That beast started arguing with me and then grabbed-”
“Kanae, your little sister called me a fucking creep and-”
“BOTH OF YOU IN MY OFFICE NOW!” Sanemi was shocked. She has never heard Kanae yell this loud, even when there were kids who would run up and down the hall when they were bored and judging my the sudden loss of color in her sister’s face, this didn’t happen often. Oh shit. Bye bye friendship.
Sanemi waited outside the familiar office, trying to listen in on the Kochou sisters’ conversations as best he could. The only words he could catch were “Sanemi”, “nice” and “fuck face” until the door slid open and the younger of the two came out. She glared at him before huffing and walking away.
“Sanemi-kun, please come in.” The sweet voice beckoned him in and Sanemi was greeted by a warm smile. “I want to apologize for my sister’s rudeness.” She said, standing up and bowing. “She can be a bit...harsh but she’s a sweet girl.”
“It’s fine. I hate to admit but I lost my temper at her.” He sheepishly rubbed the back of his head, trying his hardest to avoid eye contact with the girl he desperately tried to see the past few months. He noticed the pile of paperwork on her desk. “Sorry you had to come stop us when you’re so busy.”
“Huh?” She said in confusion and Sanemi gestured at the pile of papers. “Oh! This isn’t much compared to usual. You see, I’m expected to become the CEO in the next decade. It was part of my parents’ will…” Her face turned somber and Sanemi followed her gaze towards the photo on her desk of her parents carrying her and her sister when they were younger. They looked so happy. I wonder if my family was like that too…
“Anyways!” She clapped her hands together, bringing Sanemi back from his daydream. “It was nice to see you again. Shinobu said you’re as healthy as ever! Although…” Kanae stood up and walked towards him. “I see you’ve got a few new scars to add to your ever growing collection since the last time I saw you.” She took his hand and her fingers traced a scar that he got a few weeks ago. The sensation of her soft, delicate fingers against his callused ones sent a shiver down his spine but for some reason, he couldn’t bring himself to pull his hand away. You can do this. Ask her!
“Yes?” She looked up at him. They were so close, Sanemi could smell the mixture of roses and medicine emanating from her.
“Do you wanna hang out this Saturday...” He could feel the blush creeping up. Great. If Tengen was fucking here, he would be laughing at me. I can already hear him say “How funny to see the flamboyantly cool Sanemi get scared of talking to a girl.”
“I can’t…” Sanemi could hear and feel his heart break. “I have work that day… How about Sunday?”
“Sunday?” Sanemi couldn’t believe his ears. His heart started beating faster and he could feel himself getting more and more excited; it was the same feeling he got before a big mission.
“Oh yeah. Cool! I’ll give you my number and we can talk later.” Kanae smiled and nodded. She pulled out another sticky note and pen and gave it to Sanemi.
“It’s a date then.” She looked up at him, still smiling. If Sanemi’s heart could explode from pure joy, it would’ve right then and there.
One date led to another, then another, until finally, Sanemi and Kanae were about to celebrate their one year anniversary together. He decided to take her on a weekend getaway to the hot springs.
“Why to the hot springs?” She asked as she put her luggage into the trunk of his car. “I would’ve been fine with somewhere closer. Isn’t it hard to get reservations for one during this time of year?”
“I saved the owner’s son once a while back. Told me I can come by whenever as repayment and since my beautiful flower has been working so hard, I think she deserves a break.” Kanae blushed at his words. Sanemi was usually so brash with his choice of words so whenever he said something sweet, it made Kanae’s knees go weak. Sanemi chuckled at her reaction and drew his face closer to hers. She could feel his breath on her lips causing her to close her eyes in anticipation. The kiss never came and Kanae opened her eyes to see her little sister push her boyfriend away.
“Keep this up and I won’t let Nee-chan go with you.” Sanemi grabbed her and gave her a playful noogie. She giggled and pushed him away. Shinobu turned towards her sister and gave her a hug. “Have fun!”
“Study hard for your entrance exams.”
“You know I will.”
“Take care of Kanao too. Remind her to do stuff okay?”
“I know!” Shinobu pushed Kanae into the car. “Nee-chan don’t worry too much.” She turned to Sanemi. “Shinazugawa-san. Take care of Nee-chan for me or else.” She smiled as she slowly slid her thumb across her neck signaling Sanemi’s outcome if even a single hair was out of place of Kanae’s head.
“I know. I know.”
Sanemi waved Shinobu dismissively before getting behind the wheel. He started the car and drove off as Shinobu waved them farewell.
When Sanemi and Kanae arrived at the inn, it was already night. The car ride there was going smooth in the beginning but halfway there, one of the tires hit something sharp and it took Sanemi a while to fix it. They had to notify the inn they were going to come in later than expected.
“Oh, that’s fine Shinazugawa-san,” said the old woman on the other line. “We’ll keep your room open until you arrive. After all, this is the least our family can do for you.”
When the two finally arrived, the innkeeper, a short woman who looked to be about her 60s, walked up to them. She went up to about his hips and when she pulled him into a hug, her arms were wrapped right around Sanemi’s knees.
“Shinazugawa-san, welcome!” She pulled away and looked at Kanae with a smile. “And who is this beautiful girl?!”
Kanae leaned forward to match heights with the old woman. She smiled and stuck her hand out which the older woman graciously shook.
“It’s nice to meet you. I’m Kanae Kochou. Sanemi-kun’s girlfriend.”
The old woman laughed and gave Sanemi a pat on the back.
“Come! I’ll show you two your room.”
“This will be the room you will be staying in during your trip.”
The innkeeper slid the shoji open and revealed a very traditional Japanese room complete with tatami floor and a futon lying in the middle.
“The futons are in the closet to your right. If you want to enjoy the hot springs, you may open the doors across from us. Breakfast will be delivered to your room tomorrow at 7 a.m.” And with that, the innkeeper bowed towards the pair and left.
“Wow…” Kanae whispered as she entered their room. She walked around and opened every single door as Sanemi brought their luggage in.
“Sanemi-kun, this place is incredible.”
“Glad you liked it.” He walked over to her and hugged her from behind, inhaling the scent he grew to love. He enjoyed the moment of peace. If this was the Kochou household, Shinobu would’ve surely barged in already, shooting a devilish grin to Sanemi, as she pestered her older sister.
“Sanemi-kun…” She leaned back and stared at him. “Let’s go check out the hot springs.”
By the time Sanemi already finished his shower, Kanae was already inside their private hot spring. Her hair was tied up in a messy bun, her back facing towards him. Sanemi walked out, neatly folded the towel that was covering him, placing it on the floor, and slowly slid next to Kanae. The initial heat hurt like hell but after his body got adjusted to the heat, Sanemi felt all his troubles go away. He closed his eyes and sighed. After a long period of silence as the two continued to soak in the water, Kanae finally spoke up.
“I wish I could stay in here forever.”
“You’ll be so fucking wrinkly.”
“Would you hate me if I become wrinkly?” She poked his arm, teasingly. Sanemi opened his eyes and grabbed her hand.
“Never,” he replied kissing her hand. His kisses soon began to trail up her arm, to her neck, before he finally stopped in front of her face. Kanae stared back, face red from both the heat of the water and her boyfriend.
“I can never hate you Kanae Kochou,” he said in a low voice.
Kanae looked at her boyfriend. The look in his eyes sent a shiver down her spine. For a brief second, it was a mix of animalistic and crazed, not the gentle look he always had when he looked at her. She could feel her breath caught in her throat. She swallowed hard. His face came closer, the distance between them quickly shortening causing Kanae’s heart to beat faster. Despite being together for almost a year, the two have never gone further than a kiss on the lips. Every time they tried something would get in their way like an emergency at work or Shinobu interrupting.
When Sanemi’s lips finally reached hers, it felt like her chest was about to explode. It was slow at first. Small pecks to the lips, similar to what they usually shared but soon Sanemi began to suck on her bottom lip. He stopped for a brief second and the two locked eyes on each other.
“Kanae, do you want to do it tonight?” Kanae nodded.
Soon, they continued their kiss. Kanae opened her mouth for a breath of air and Sanemi managed to slip his tongue inside her mouth. Kanae felt his tongue explore the inside of her mouth. His tongue finally met hers and a shock of electricity traveled throughout her body.
“Sanemi-kun,” she whimpered. Sanemi lifted her up and the sudden blast of the cool, night air caused goosebumps to appear on her skin.
“Let’s not dirty the water,” Sanemi whispered. Kanae got a good look at his reddened face and wondered if hers was as red as his. She nodded and Sanemi brought them into the room and placed her gently on the futon. He hovered above her, eyeing her up and down. Kanae felt a new wave of heat travel her body.
“Don’t stare too much…” she whispered.
“I can’t help it,” he whispered. “Especially when my beautiful girlfriend is naked right in front of me.”
Kanae’s face turned red again, almost matching the same shade of red as the lipstick she usually wore. Sanemi remark wasn’t just empty flattery. Kanae was taller than the average woman and was quite slender. Her hair was like long, black silk, her breasts large, but not too large, and the nipple that adorned each one was almost the same pink as the roses that grew in her garden.
His lips returned to hers for a few more peckings before slowly tracing her jaw, down her neck before reaching her breasts.
A wave of pleasure traveled down Kanae’s body causing a moan to escape her lips. Sanemi had gotten a mouthful of one of her breasts, sucking on it like a newborn does for milk, as his hand fondled the other.
The sound of Kanae moaning underneath him, caused a surge of heat to travel down to his lower half. The hand that fondled her breast, slowly traveled down her abdomen until it finally reached the space in between Kanae’s legs which was dripping from its own juices.
Kanae shrieked. She had been so distracted with Sanemi playing with her breast that the sensation of something entering in between her wet folds shocked her. His finger slowly slipped in further and a white, hot flash appeared in front of Kanae’s eyes. His finger went in and out of her, causing more liquid to pool out of her. With the addition of more fingers, Sanemi soon began to explore inside Kanae.
The sensation was weird; it was much different from the times she had played with herself but, Kanae didn’t hate it. His calloused fingers were much longer than hers and reached spots she couldn’t.
When he finally pulled his fingers out, Kanae was disappointed.
“Kanae,” he said in a ragged voice. “I don’t think I can hold it in any longer.”
Sanemi’s lower half had become hard for a while now and the more he touched her, the more he wanted the lower halves of their bodies to finally become one. Sanemi felt her finger trace one of the scars as her long legs wrapping around his waist.
Taking this as a sign, Sanemi positioned his member right outside her. Slowly, he pushed in and waited for her walls to adjust.
Taking this as a sign, Sanemi continued moving his hips. He lowered himself onto her, catching her panting lips, kissing her feverishly. As their tongues were locked in battle, Sanemi could feel her moan from underneath him causing his member to stiffen even more and her walls to tighten their grip on him. He broke their kiss and lifted his body up so he can thrust his entire member into her.
Sanemi pulled out and Kanae’s lower half cried before gobbling him up hungerly when he entered again. Their bodies moved as one as Kanae couldn’t control her desire for her boyfriend.
“Sanemi-kun, don’t stop! Please!
She was close. Sanemi could tell and plunged himself deeper into her. She clawed his back as a wave a pleasure traveled throughout her body. Soon after, Sanemi finished inside her.
His arms gave out and he laid on top of Kanae as she stroked his hair.
“We forgot to use a condom.”
The realization hit Sanemi. He sat up and looked at her with panicked eyes, arms waving around him, not knowing what to do. She laughed.
“It’s okay. I’m on the pill.” Sanemi sighed a breath of relief. “Although it only works 99.7% of the time so that means their might be a .3% chance it fails and I get pregnant.”
Sanemi pinched her cheeks.
“Stop scaring me.”
“Do you not want children?” She asked, trying to not sound disappointed.
“I do. But not now. We’re too young to be parents and you still have to become CEO, my love.” He leaned down for a kiss. Kanae gladly returned it and pulled him into an embrace. That night the two fell asleep in each others arms.