Silverware clinked against plates as Agent Will and the two women finished eating. He leaned back in his chair and patted his belly. "That was absolutely delicious. You two make a killer team."

Haru lit up at the compliment, but Yuisu squirmed a bit in her seat at the word 'killer'.

Haru tilted her head questioningly, then kept right on tilting it beyond the limits of a human neck. Like an owl, her neck was freakishly flexible. "Are you okay, miss Yuisu? Did I do something wrong?"

Yuisu shook her head. "No, you didn't do anything wrong. I just… I'm just not used to killing something in order to eat it. I've always just bought my meat pre-packaged and… not cute."

"Oof," Agent Will grimaced. "Sorry miss Nakahara. That's another thing I should have explained. Haru's a raptor-type harpy, so she's a natural hunter and strictly carnivorous. These mountains are excellent hunting grounds, and your property is large enough for Haru to roam, which was part of why you were selected as her host." He shrugged. "Hunting's in her nature, so I hope you can get used to it."

Yuisu looked from Will to Haru, who was sitting on the edge of her seat, then nodded. "I can do that. I know too well what it's like to be shunned for part of your nature. You can always be true to yourself here, Haru."

Agent Will gave a smug nod, like he had already known what she'd say, and rose from the table. "Well, thanks again for the meal. I'll get out of your way now. Have fun, ladies!"

At the front door, as he pulled on his overcoat, he turned back to Yuisu. "Oh, and I'll get a repair team ASAP for that broken door. We can reimburse you for similar expenses in the future. I just ask that you don't make them too commonplace."

The door closed behind him and Yuisu turned to consider the boxes of Haru's belongings that lined the entryway. "Hmm, I hadn't put any thought into which bedroom would be yours, Haru. We've got plenty to choose from. Want to go pick one out?"

"Oh, thank you, miss Yuisu. You're so kind," Haru cooed, already darting down the hallway and peering in doorways with youthful curiosity. She was a white blur of feathers as she darted in and out of every door she could find. Yuisu tried to keep up at first but she soon gave up and just walked along behind. The house was one floor with a single hallway running in a square around it, so it wasn't like Haru could get lost.

Eventually Haru stopped in a room and Yuisu caught up. She peered in and saw a strange sight. Every futon, blanket, and comforter had been pulled out of the closet and thrown in a heap in a corner of the room. In the center of this pile, Haru sat cross-legged, clumsily arranging pillows into a ring around her.

"Umm, Haru…" Yuisu said lightly. "Are you sure you want this room? It's actually kind of mi—"

"Oh yes!" Haru interrupted. "I really like this room." She threw herself onto the nest of pillows and blankets and rolled around adorably. "Something about the smell of the room and this bedding is just... wonderful. I reminds me of returning home from a successful hunt with prey in my claws and sweat running down my body."

Yuisu quirked her brow in disbelief. This is my room, so she's talking about… my scent. Do I really smell that good?

Haru plucked a body pillow from the pile, held it to her face and inhaled deeply. "Ooh, the scent on this one is the best, like a mewling kitten, craving attention, only to be set upon by a voracious harpy."

Yuisu blushed brightly and clenched her jaw. She remembered the many lonely nights she had, shall we say, 'satisfied' herself against that very pillow. Of course she had washed it, along with all the other bedding, but it seemed Haru's sense of smell was nearly supernatural. Actually, Yuisu thought, she can have this room now. There's no way in hell I could admit that this room, and therefore that smell, is mine.

Just then, as if she had heard Yuisu's thoughts, Haru looked up from the pillow and met Yuisu's green eyes. "Now that I think about it, this room smells like you, miss Yuisu. It must already be your room. Should I pick out another?"

[Image: imgur /dsJbKqi ]

Yuisu shook her head fervently. The situation had become too awkward to bear and Yuisu needed to enact an exit strategy ASAP. "Nope, nope. This one's all yours now." She strode purposefully into the room and grabbed only an unlabeled cardboard box and a laptop, holding one under each arm. "I can get the rest of my stuff later."

On second thought… She set the box and laptop at the door, turned back and walked up to Haru's nest. "Uh, I'd like this too," she blurted as she plucked the body pillow out from between Haru's wings. Yuisu pivoted robotically and zipped out of the room.

Yuisu couldn't see it, but there was a mischievous grin on Haru's face as she watched Yuisu leave.