Categories > Anime/Manga > Yu Yu Hakusho > Classified Chop Suey


by bubblygoo 0 reviews

Maya moves next door to a haunted apartment and its resident fox demon.

Category: Yu Yu Hakusho - Rating: G - Genres:  - Characters: Kurama - Published: 2010-05-10 - Updated: 2010-05-11 - 1297 words

Maya's unlucky number was fourteen. She received a parking ticket on the fourteenth of every month the first year she got her driver's license, she drew the number fourteen when she went to meet her first boyfriend at a restaurant he hadn't had the courtesy to make reservations for, only to have him break up with her, and she lost her memory of the night she turned fourteen. By all rights, Maya should have known something would go wrong when the only apartment within her price range left was apartment fourteen on the third floor, but poor college students have endured worse than live in an unlucky apartment, and besides, Yamanaka-san, her landlady, reminded her of her grandma.

Maya's first impression of the apartment was that it could have been worse. The living room was furnished with a white sofa with yellow stains on the bottom, but the original white color had faded so much that who was to say that yellow wasn't the original color? The refrigerator had three shelves with only one missing hinge, and the freezer came with two dark blue ice cube trays. The kitchen was practically sized: While working at the stove, Maya only had to make a half-circle turn to put dirty pots and pans in the sink. A quarter turn, and she had a work surface. Her bedroom was carpeted a blend of colors similar to her sofa and had a desk in the corner, complete with a lamp. Next to her room was a completely empty room, which she hoped would belong to a roommate, soon. The bathroom was the best room in the apartment. The tub, though rusty at the bottom, was clean, with a showerhead at the top and a workable dial, and the mirror had no cracks, and the toilet was impeccable, and the sink bowl was deep. Maya, who had never had very high standards for bathrooms, would have forgiven all of the faults of her apartment because of this wonderful lavatory, if not for the little pair of black antennae that she saw peeping out of the sink drawer.

It must be said that Maya was an avid lover of horror and the occult. She relished ghost stories and haunted houses and curses and witchcraft, though by no means was she a malevolent girl. As she explained to new acquaintances and the occasional policeman, she wanted to understand what society deemed phenomena or mystery or the forbidden, though this hobby of hers also caused her great pain because fantasy, once understood, became the mundane, and she would have to find something else to fascinate her. With this taken into account, friends loved to watch horror films with Maya. There was something comfortable about clinging onto her for dear life and hiding your eyes when someone was killed or something jumped into the screen from nowhere, and all she did was eat popcorn and watch intently. Maya never screamed, ducked, or hid her eyes.

But this time, she did scream, for she knew everything there was to know about cockroaches, that they lived forever, could survive atom bombs, ate everything and anything, reproduced by the hundreds, and if you found one, there were bound to be others.

Yamanaka came into the bathroom as quickly as an octogenarian could, and it didn't take her very long to compute why sweet and placid Maya was bashing the sink drawer with a most likely filthy toilet brush. She only stopped when she examined the brush and found the corpse of the roach skewered onto the fibers, still twitching slightly. Yamanaka assured Maya "That cockroach was the last of them; I hired an agency and had the whole building sprayed a week ago, and this one must have gotten away", but Maya told her landlady that she was having the bathroom cleaned regardless.

After seeing Maya move in her belongings and wrenching her back in the process, Yamanaka on her laying down while the older woman prepared tea. Although Maya protested, saying that she had no tea bags, Yamanaka-san demonstrated an unusually strong grip for a woman her age and forced Maya onto the couch before striding into the kitchen and, almost instantaneously, bringing a tea kettle and two mugs on a tray.

"Here you go. Now, you just relax while I explain a few things to you. I know you might not be very happy with this apartment."

"Oh no, I—"

"Careful, dear, don't spill it. But I have a very good reason for giving you this one, and not the one you wanted, number nineteen, right down the hall, and that is, and don't laugh at a senile old lady like me for saying so, that apartment… is haunted."

"As long as it isn't haunted by the ghosts of the cockroaches you exterminated" is what Maya would have said if she hadn't been drinking tea at the moment, but she was, and she ended up choking and spilling it all down her shirt.

"Oh dear, I warned you not to spill it. And you're wearing a nice, white shirt, too."

Maya ineffectively tried to wipe away the stain with her hands. "Oh, it's all right, this is an old shirt, anyway. But please, go on. Are you sure it's a haunting?"

"Yes, I'm afraid so. A nasty haunting, I haven't seen a case like it in my entire life. And that's a long time." Maya nodded. "The last tenant was very much like yourself, a young college student looking for an economical first home away from home. She begged me for the cheapest apartment I had, but I told her it was no good. She insisted, saying she wasn't afraid of ghosts. She lasted one semester before she couldn't take it anymore and left. When I told you this apartment was the only one you could afford, I was lying. But I saw that you were a very sweet girl, I wouldn't dare make the same mistake twice."

The little old lady, who had seem so strong a few moment ago, was suddenly on the verge of tears, yet the first thing Maya wanted to do was interrogate her. But Maya had some sense of propriety and wrapped her arm around Yamanaka's shoulders instead. "I'm very sorry."

"Oh, don't apologize. You have nothing to apologize about."

Unsure of how to answer to that, Maya settled for offering Yamanaka-san her mug of tea. "Yamanaka-san," she said, when the older woman had calmed down, "What are you going to do with that apartment?"

"I've allowed someone to take residence in it." Maya felt a surge of jealousy and beat it down. "He says he has some experience in the supernatural and says he'll be able to take care of the problem, and something about him makes me believe it. He'll be your neighbor, so you'll see him around. You're interested in that, aren't you, dear? Maybe you can ask him."

"Oh, I will." Maya, who took fierce pride in her sixth sense, cursed the number fourteen and this lucky and yet unlucky man who dared to take her (now realized) dream apartment away from her. "Will you tell me his name, Yamanaka-san, so I can address him correctly when I see him?"

"Certainly, Maya." Maya poured in more tea for the lady, who had quickly emptied her cup. "His name is—oh, someone's knocking. We mustn't keep them waiting."

It took Maya ten seconds to register that Ohsomeonesknocking was not a name before she answered the door, hoping that whoever it was had something very important to say.

"Hello, Kitajima-san. I'm very sorry to interrupt you. I'm Minamino Shuichi. I live in apartment nineteen, just down the hall, and I have unfortunately run out of toilet paper."

Very important.
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