Curse of the zodiac
The school year had just started and excitement was strung Tight across the student body, Friends excited to see one another again, new pranks to be polled, adventures to be had. But all of it seemed to be lost on one person as she stood quietly facing the large school building. Her face was withdrawn slightly and her head was slightly tilted, Curls falling in a cascade across her shoulders and back.
Moku Finally let out the breath she hadn't realized she had been holding dropping her head to look at her tightly clenched hands. She wondered for a moment when it was she had actually balled Her fingers into fists, But quickly discarded the line of thought. It wasn't worth it when she had been having moments of complete blankness Ever since her family had been killed. Almost instantly, she shut down those thoughts, Not wanting to break down into tears in the middle of the schoolyard. Instead, she attempted to focus herself on what she was waiting for.
It was the end of the day and she had contacted the Sohmas That went to her school, explaining to them that she had been invited to stay at their house and receive treatment from the psychiatrist that owned it. She didn't exactly explain why, but had arranged to meet them in front of the school building when the day was over. She didn't know where the house was that she was going to be living in and wasn't planning on wondering around only to get hopelessly lost like she was bound to do. With a sharp sigh, she looked towards the Tree she was standing next to, gently touching the rough bark and enjoying the scratchy feeling against her fingertips and the distraction it provided
When Akira had learned that a classmate of theirs would be joining them in their home, he panicked just slightly. It was risky enough that they all went to public school, let alone having someone actually live with them. He had seen the girl around and was subtly familiar with who she was. He worried what this would come to, and decided he would just keep his distance. Like he usually does. He was supposed to meet her with the other Sohma's from their household after school, but instead he skipped out on his last class to escape early. He thought Hikari wouldn't be too happy about that, but he didn't care. As soon as he hit the nearest forest, he transformed into his tiger form and searched for comfortable spot to nap until later. He pondered even staying there the entire night.
Ryo was pleased to have the girl be moving in with them. He had a few classes with her and had made a few flirtatious comments to her in the past. What better for Ryo than another girl in the house? He tapped his pencil on his desk impatiently while waiting for his last class to end. When it finally did, he burst out of the building to try and be the first to greet her. When he got to her, he flashed a big grin. "Hey there."
Saya had made it out of the building right after Ryo did. She was just as excited about the girl joining them. She was already making plans for them to become great friends, since Saya didn't have many girl friends at school she was looking forward to doing hair and painting toe nails and staying up half the night gossiping. Ryo was her best friend, but she couldn't do those things with him. She ran over to Moku excitedly. "Hi Moku!"
The last bell Echoed across the school ground For a moment before a flood of students spilled Out of the doors. Moku Watched this all quietly, Dark brown eyes flickering from face-to-face As she waited for the Sohmas To make their appearance. She was Rewarded After only a few heartbeats By the appearance of one of them. She smiled up at the boy, Fairly positive that he preferred to go bye Ryo. "Good afternoon." She said politely, Hiding the nervousness within her stomach by fiddling with a stitch At the end of her sleeve.
The second family member made their Appearance shortly after this And she simply had to smile at the enthusiastic Greeting that she received. She wished that she could Remember their names exactly, starting to feel like she was floundering when she didn't know how to Address them. "Hello."
And it was worse when the third showed up, short and stocky And she had absolutely no idea who he was or that he was even a Sohma. She couldn't help but show some of her Nervousness by gently biting at her lower lip. "Umm... Thank you for being willing to let me stay at your house." She said in her soft voice, Brushing a few of her curls from her face.
Ryo's grin changed a bit to show a more cocky look. "Oh, it's no problem. We're pleased to have you. Maybe you'll find yourself just as pleased as I am."
Saya, though simple minded as she was, always understood Ryo's jokes. She shot him a threatening look. "Ryo!"
When Dai arrived, Saya's eyes lit up and she waited anxiously for him to join their small group. Once he had, she threw her arms around him with a big smile and an almost crushing hug. "Dai!"
Not one to be easily flustered, Moku Instead produced a winning smile. "I'm sure everything will work out just fine!"She said in an oddly cheerful voice, Put more at ease By the friendly manner in which Saya Interacted with her. After a moment however, she seemed to lose a little bit of her stubborn Nature and quickly reached for the suitcase she had sitting beside her, eyes Dropping.
Daisuke grunted Slightly as he was suddenly enveloped in a crushing hug, a definite expression of awkwardness blossoming onto his face. He shifted around as much he could for a moment before simply muttering, "Hi Saya..."
Ryo hadn't even noticed the suitcase, as he'd been looking strictly at Moku. When she moved to reach for the suitcase he quickly interrupted her movement to lean down and grab it himself. "Oh, let me get that for ya! We all set?" He straightened up and looked over at Saya.
Though she didn't want to, Saya finally let go of Daisuke. She nodded at Ryo; even her silent nodding seemed to express excitement. Perhaps it was the large, warm smile that usually stuck on her face. She started to ask where Akira was, but then she realized he probably had snuck off somewhere. He wasn't very social.
She took it upon herself to lead the group, linking her arm with Moku's and going ahead of the boys. "We're going to have so much fun! We can do each other's hair, and do pedicures, and bake things!" She was particularly excited because she thought this experience would be something like having a sister. Hikari was nice and Saya loved her, but she was glad to have a girl closer to her age in the house now. Plus they could talk about the boys at school, even though Saya was pretty fixed on Dai.
As she and Ryo Nearly collided when they both reached for the suitcase at the same time, Moku Found herself taking a hasty step backwards. She blinked a few times quickly Before glancing away, Feeling slightly embarrassed. "I-i'm Sorry... Yes. Yes I'm ready." She didn't have to say much more than that, Saya's arm hooking Through hers easily And steering her in the right direction.
She was grateful for the opportunity to get out of an awkward situation, Focusing her attention on the activities that Saya Was listing off in a quick chirp. She nodded her head after a moment and found herself smiling again. "I think I would like that. I have a few recipes I enjoy doing And have just perfected a technique for French braiding."
Saya's eyes widened, and her mouth popped open slightly. She was very glad to hear that Moku looked forward to spending time with her. An image popped into her head of the two of them plus Hikari, if they could get her to join, having a big girl's night sometime. She got particularly excited when Moku mentioned french braiding. "OH! You have to braid my hair! And teach me how to braid, please?!"
Ryo laughed softly to himself. He knew Saya could be a bit annoying at times to others, but he appreciated how happy she was all the time. And he was glad Moku didn't seem to mind her. Saya was like a little sister to him. He figured the girls wouldn't hear him and Dai if they had a chat, since they were a bit ahead of them and Saya kept talking. He looked at Dai. "You're quiet, as usual. What do you think about all this?"
Akira's acute senses were much like a tiger's, especially when in his zodiac form. He had been laying near a large tree in the forest, his eyes closed. His left ear twitched as he heard the group passing, and he opened his eyes slowly. Though he wasn't ready to join them, he was feeling curious. He rose and slowly headed towards the edge of the forest, each paw stepping gently as if he were a real tiger hunting. When he was close enough to see them, he sat down and narrowed his eyes just slightly, to better observe the scene.
Typical Saya, he thought. Already she had appointed this girl her best friend. Though Saya often got on his nerves, he couldn't help the edges of his massive mouth curving slightly. He wished he could be walking with them now, but he wouldn't allow himself to do so.
Footsteps now making their way onto unfamiliar ground, Moku Felt the Familiar stirrings Of butterflies in her stomach As she instinctively tightened her arm Around Saya's. Almost at once, she attempted to cover it up with a bright smile. Never would she allow anyone she wasn't close to to see her nervous or depressed. "I promise I'll teach you every trick in the book I know about hair."She said sincerely, finding herself beginning to quite enjoy the company. Even if she said things to cover up negative emotions, She would never tell a lie.
Several steps behind her, Daisuke Glanced quickly towards Ryo And blinked. After a moment, he shrugged his shoulders. "I'm afraid she's going to find out something that she shouldn't..." He said in his soft slightly mumbling voice, eyes wary.
The thought had crossed Ryo's mind as well, but he didn't think too much on it. He was not the type to dwell over anything negative for long. He shrugged, a carefree look spread across his face, and threw his arm out towards Dai, giving him a powerful pat on the back. "Oh, maybe she will. Maybe she won't. Might be kinda fun if she did! Don't sweat it."
Saya continued on in her chipper voice, making plans and sharing a couple of stories about things she'd baked in the past. Most were more like "kitchen horror stories" where she was just slightly short of burning the house down, but she told them as if they were wonderful experiences despite the danger.
Finally they arrived at the house. Saya let Moku free from her arm and ran inside. "Hikari! Hikari we're home! And Moku's here!"
Akira had followed them, though he remained in the woods. He had planned to keep away completely, but his curiosity and long for social interaction was sometimes overpowering. More often than not, he had restraint. But once in awhile he simply had to join in, even if he stayed hidden. There were times he would watch social events at school from a distance, or get settled in an area of the woods where he had a clear view of a nearby park. This way he could see the excitement, and on some level enjoy it himself, without actually being near anyone. He didn't do this often, as he still felt he was putting others in danger, but now and then he indulged. He decided he would wait for dinner, at least, before returning to his human form and going home to greet their new guest.