Monday, 8 June 2015

Chapter six (segment eight), twenty four years earlier, July, Ryu

The clubs closed down for spring term. One week was all that separated them from finals. After that summer break.

All six of them gathered for study evenings, which really wasn't all that different from club activities. But walking talking sure is a lot more fun.

Ryu wasn't entirely convinced about what Urufu was doing but as long as it meant spending a lot of time with Kuri he wasn't about to complain.

At the moment he was spending time with his sister. In their kitchen. Any other time he would have refused but this time they were standing here preparing food for ten. The club core, which meant even more time with Kuri-chan, was coming.

Also expected were Sango-chan with Jirou-kun and did they make a cute couple, or what?

More unexpected was that the motor mouth had announced his arrival together with Sakura-chan. Talk about a mismatched couple. But whatever floats their boat I guess.

“You're strangely happy idiot bro,” Noriko said. He had been silent for a while.

Behind them two large stashes of vegetables and meat threatened to merge into one. This was the main reason they were both so busy cleaning and chopping vegetables.

“Last time gang's getting together like this before exams,” Ryu answered. “I like the club a lot more than I had thought.”

Noriko cleaned out some shiitake and put them in a plastic bowl. When she put the bowl on the second table she looked at her brother. “Like the club or like Kuri-chan?”

Ryu didn't even take the bait. He just continued cutting up salad. “Both,” he smiled.

After another quarter of an hour they were ready to fire up two hot-pots, and shortly after that the doorbell rang.

All eight at the same time. They must have taken the train together.

Noriko was busy making the tables so he went for the door.

“Welcome to our imperial residence,” he greeted them to take some edge from the impact of the oversized house.

Urufu and Kuri failed that test badly. As in it was clear they hadn't even noticed how large the building was. What kind of places did you two call home?

After that Ryu's home turned into a friendly chaos of hungry teenagers planning to spend the evening studying.

Soon the ingredients lay simmering in the two pots and hunger set the pace for the conversations. From the occasional word or grunt while they still gorged themselves to fragments of statements and then full sentences as gluttony gave way to satisfaction.

“That was,” Sakura-chan beamed, “exactly what I needed.”

The motor mouth was still busy eating but even he stopped chewing as he watched her in amazement.

“You know I am able to talk. I just don't overdo it.”

She had spoken a second consecutive sentence without letting anyone in.

“Did he do anything to you?”

“Should we beat him up?”

“Nori-kun what have you done to her?”

“Whoa, whoa, whoa! I in' o any'ing!” he said and looked for some sympathy. Talking with his mouth full of food did little for his cause. “'agura-an, 'elp me!”

“Nori-kun, silence becomes you better,” was Sakura-chan's merciless reply to his plea.

That bought her a round of laughter from both tables.

Well that's a good way to finish dinner. “Books everyone. One table English and the other Japanese.”

It was as Kuri would have said, time to get down to business. But not as Urufu wanted, to do it right. At least not according to his standards. If they did they'd all fail their exams.

Guys it's good to see you here. One last race before finals and then we break up for summer.

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