Emiko and Hotaru work on Tsuzuki to help him start to see his true feelings for Anna.
Chapter Three: Botan Rice Candy:
In this warm spring rain,
tiny leaves are sprouting
from the eggplant seed
Morning rain. Guess the clouds weren’t done crying yet. Tsuzuki tried to ignore it. The Cinnabon line was backed up to the door. The Shinigami was at the tail end. “/I got here too late!/” he thought. “/Damn the chief for all of that paperwork!/” He looked at the front again. What’s taking them? Do they not have enough? “/I hope they haven’t run out,/” Tsuzuki thought nervously. However, that made it way to his “things to be concerned about today” list pretty quickly.
Tsuzuki happened to look out of the corner of his eye and see Hotaru smiling at him.
“Hiya!” she cheered. Sweat drop on Tsuzuki’s head
“Oh, it’s you…” he mumbled.
“And me!” a voice spoke up. Tsuzuki looked on the other side of him. Emiko smirked at him.
“Hi!” she said. The Shinigami sighed.
“And you brought a friend!” Hoto-chan laughed.
“Girlfriend!” Tsuzuki looked forward.
“You’re not here for the Coffee Cinna Sticky Buns, are you?” The girls shook their heads.
“Figures!” Emiko grinned at him, wickedly.
“You know what tastes better than a sticky bun?” Tsuzuki didn’t move.
“I know I won’t like the answer, but what?” The demons giggled at each other. Emiko turned and whispered in his ear. The Shinigami’s face went bright red.
“Emiko, what the hell?!?”
“Shhh,” she whispered. “Not so loud!”
“Why would you say something like that?” The butch demon shrugged.
“Well, does it?” Hotaru jumped in. Tsuzuki’s face went redder.
“I wouldn’t know that!” he yelped. The girls laughed again.
“I don’t see why not,” Hotaru said. “You two seem perfectly fit for each other.” Tsuzuki shook his head.
“No, it’s not like that!” Hotaru raised an eyebrow at him.
“Then, what is it like?” Emiko challenged.
“Uh…” Tsuzuki began to say. Fine time for the words to get tangled up in his mouth. The girls grinned.
“Ahhh!” Hotaru said. “So you do like her!” Tsuzuki finally dropped his head. He had just lost to the one thing that he wasn’t sure about and tried to deny so adamantly to keep everything simple. These two just shot that right out the window. Why couldn’t they just leave well enough alone?
“Fine,” Tsuzuki sighed. “Yes, I do like her…” The girls looked on at him.
“In what way?” Hotaru asked. The Shinigami quickly looked away.
“Do we have to do this now?” he asked.
“Yes!” the girls said. Tsuzuki sighed again. They just don’t quit, do they?
“Just…” he began again. “I want to get to know her in any way that I can.” The demons listened and nodded.
“Fair enough,” Hotaru said.
“Have you told her how you feel?” Emiko asked. Tsuzuki shook his head.
“What would I say?” he asked.
“You like her!” the girls said together.
“No, there’s more than that…” he tried to reason. The girls looked at him closely. He knew they didn’t believe him. Emiko lightly patted the Shinigami on the shoulder.
“Aw don’t worry,” she said. “She finds you very attractive too.” Tsuzuki looked at her in surprise.
“She does?” he asked. Emiko nodded.
“She does,” she replied. “I got her to admit it.” Tsuzuki looked on amazed and suspicious. Anna really does find him attractive? After all these years? Wow… Emiko slapped him on the back, hard.
“So, what do you have to lose by telling Anna how you feel?” she boomed. Tsuzuki winced.
“Ow,” he whimpered.
“Oh, I didn’t hit you that hard, you big baby!” Emiko said.
“It still hurt and I could lose my job if I get too close to Anna. I’m already in trouble for bringing her back from the dead,” he complained. The demons tried to look innocent now.
“Well… you just let us deal with the boys of Ju-Oh-Chu,” Emiko said. “You just go get your woman, okay?” Tsuzuki looked at her uneasily. He didn’t like the sound of that. Emiko grinned at him.
“Okay?” she pressed again. Tsuzuki nodded quickly.
“Uh… yeah, yeah!” he said. Emiko and girlfriend smiled.
“Good!” Hotaru replied. She patted him on the shoulder.
“Enjoy your sticky bun!” she cheered as she and Emiko left Cinnabon. Tsuzuki made it to the counter in discomfort. Suddenly, he wasn’t so hungry anymore.
“Can I help you?” the girl behind the counter asked. Tsuzuki blinked once.
“Never mind…” he mumbled. The Shinigami quietly walked away. Cracks in the ice, maybe? Hard to say. The pair needed a moment to think.