She's sitting on the stool she's dragged into the kitchen and watching the goings-on in the living room, but she can't stop herself from looking out onto her balcony. Well, actually, at the man who's currently standing on her balcony. As she thinks about him, her eyes wander over in his direction again and the events of the past 30-some-odd hours come back to the forefront of her thoughts. She pulls her gaze back into her apartment, but can't stop thinking about what Kumon Kaito told them about Micchi-no, Mitsuzane. She can't think of him as Micchi anymore.

She had met him a few times before, when Kouta brought him along one summer to help them clean her old apartment. She'd liked the happy, cheerful, polite young man she'd met. It was hard to remember him as that nice young man when she'd so recently seen and heard the evidence of how far he had fallen. He had almost literally stabbed Kouta in the back, had usurped his own brother and left him defenseless against a man who'd also betrayed him. Yet again, she glances out the balcony door at Takatora as she is reminded of her childhood friend and boss.

She gets up, walks out of the kitchen, though the living room, onto her balcony and stops by his side. She does not look at him but instead gazes up at the moon. It's full tonight, she notices, but doesn't say a word. He knows she's here. A breeze wafts through the silent city, ruffling his hair and shifting her bangs back into her eyes. Idly, she notes that she either needs to buy barrettes or bobby pins, or she needs to get a haircut. But that can wait. Several minutes pass before she turns around to head back inside, stops, and touches his arm.

"I made makizushi. If you get hungry, it will be either on the table or in the refrigerator, just so you know." She walks inside, meets Kouta's gaze, and shrugs in response. She walks back into the kitchen, takes a cup out of the cabinet and fills it with water before setting it on the table. The makizushi she sets on a plate and places it next to the cup of water. She grabs her cup and is filling it with water when she hears the balcony door close. She turns off the faucet and looks over her shoulder. She sees Takatora re-enter the house and walk towards the table, hands in his pockets, head bowed. Kouta stands up and intercepts him before the other man takes more than three steps into the house. The younger man puts a hand on the other's shoulder and meets Takatora's gaze steadily. She smiles. While Mitsuzane is not Kouta's brother, they were friends, and his betrayal hurts Kouta too. After a silent moment, Takatora acknowledges Kouta with a single nod. Kouta smiles and steps back, walks back to the couch, and resumes talking with Mai. Takatora starts to move again, meets her gaze, and smiles. She returns it, pulls her own plate of makizushi out of the fridge, and moves to the table.

Okay, I really need to update more. I know that I have my alphabet that I need to be working on, not to mention at least two other stories, but I'm absolute rubbish at regular updates, it seems. This is a bit of a experiment in this sort of writing style, and it literally just popped into my head last night. I seem to be best at making up specific scenes and general synopses. (What is the plural form of synopsis anyway?)

The "she" in this story is Akikawa Shinonome, an OC that is a few years younger than Takatora. I'm working on a stand-alone that's still part of this AU that's about her and her backstory. It shoud be out soon.

This is set after episode 28, so even without the presence of an OC, this is probably going to be in major AU territory once the actual episode comes out. I used the Japanese spelling for Kota's and Kaito's names.

Disclaimer: Nope, don't own it. If I did, Micchi would still be Micchi, not emo Mitsuzane.

5/5: Just realized I spelled Micchi wrong. Went back and changed that, along with a few other spelling errors. Also changed a few bits that weren't accurate anymore to reflect the setting. Reviews, please?

3/29: Changed "Kota" to "Kouta." Sorry about all the "Updates" that aren't really.