It had been two months since Heart Aino had graduated from high school. She had been wisely saving up enough money to get an apartment...But honestly, she couldn't have done it without her best friend, Saki Tsuzuru. The two had pooled their money together and gotten themselves a very nice, roomy apartment room.
"I'm off to work now, Saki!" Heart called out as she walked out the door.
"All right!" Saki called back.
Heart had taken up a job at the animal shelter. She loved all the cute, cuddly little animals that came in... She even had a favourite. He was an old bulldog named Roary. He was a huge teddy bear.
Heart smiled and took a deep breath at the summer air. It was warm day today and she felt like taking it slow so she could enjoy the nice weather. 'I love the summer! So warm and the animals love it too!' she thought happily.
She passed by many people who smiled at her and some waved witch she waved back with a happy smile. 'Today is going to be a good day!'
She walked down the road and paused when she heard a sound to her side. She turned and saw an alleyway that seemed to hold very little light. She tilted her head slightly before blinking as she heard it again. A soft whimper. 'Oh, some poor animal must be hurt. Don't worry buddy Hearts coming! she shouted in her head as she ran into the alleyway.
She tripped over a can on her way in and fell facefirst to the floor. "Ouch..." She mumbled, pushing herself back up. "Okay, that was embarrassing..." Shaking her head, she looked over to the direction she heard the whimpers come from. She saw a small cardboard box.
Smiling, she approached, and saw a very TINY figure curled up in a ball, trembling and whimpering. She tilted her head. "Aw, come here little guy..." She picked the figure up...
And when she got a glimpse of what it actually was, her entire world just froze up on the spot.
In her arms was not an animal but very small baby boy. Yet this baby had no baby fat and he looked thin. He had messy black hair that seemed to curl, she could not see his eyes because they were closed tight as the boy was still trembling seeming to not notice he was picked up.
Hearts eyes were wide in horror as she just stared at this small boy in her arms. She couldn't think, hell she wasn't breathing at the moment. She just stared with wide eyes before slowly slumping to her knees.
She snapped out of her little brain dead moment when she saw the child open his eyes to show the most beautiful emerald green eyes filled with pain she snapped. With a sob she pulled the child into her bust and held him there in a tight hug and she cried.
"Oh God..." She sobbed out, collapsing to her knees as she snuggled him close. "Oh my God, what happened...?" Tears streamed down her face. "Who did this to you? Who was the monster that hurt you...?"
The child tilted his head and looked at her. The pretty lady was sad...He didn't like that...So he reached up with his tiny hands and wiped the tears away.
"Whysa?" He asked, tilting his head. Heart was able to get the gist of what he was saying and sniffled.
"Y-You shouldn't be hurt like this...You shouldn't be in this alley...You shouldn't be wearing those disgusting clothes, and...Wait...what's that...?"
She noticed a red mark on the child's shirt and her eyes widened. "No...Please don't tell me..." She peeked under the boy's shirt and saw scars and injuries marking the poor thing's body.
"Oh…oh god" she sobbed out, her tears coming out faster. The boy blinked and he frowned softly and tried to wipe away her tears again. She looked down at him with soft concerned eyes.
She leaned down and gave the child a kiss on his forehead causing the child's eyes to grow wide with shock and confusion. It pained the young girl to see this. 'Don't tell me…he has never had a kiss before?"
Her eyes then narrowed into determination. 'Then I guess I will just have to give him them all then!' she thought strongly before raining down kisses on the little boy's face causing him to squirm and giggle.
She smiled down at him at his kissed covered face. He looked up at her with pure devotion in his wide orbs that made the woman squeal internally. 'SO CUTE!'
She kissed him one last time on the nose and stood up with him cradled in her arms. She walked out of the alleyway all the while baby talking him to get him to giggle and babble back at her.
Harry had a tiny smile as he smuggled into the woman's arms. He liked her, she was not mean, she gave warm hugs, and her lip thingy felt so good! He wanted more but he would not be greedy that would make her mad and cause her to hate him. He thought with sadness.
Heart was thinking hard about what to do next. 'I don't think it's a good idea to go to work today...I'd better be there for him when he needs it...'
She pulled out her cell phone and dialed the number of the animal shelter she worked at. The phone rang, and the person on the other end picked up.
"Hi, Chizuru! It's me...Heart. Listen, something REALLY big came up, so I don't think I'm gonna be able to make it in today..."
"That's fine." Her boss's voice sounded. "You've been working hard, you deserve a little time off."
"Thank you!" Heart said happy and looked down at the confused little boy who she kissed again. "I'll talk to you, latter bye." She said as she hung up while Chizuru chucked on the other end.
She put her phone back in her pocket and looked down at the child that was now looking around with wide curious eyes. She smiled warmly to herself. 'Such an adorable little angel.' She thought rocking him. He gazed those wide eyes up at her and the arcana of love felt her heart warm up.
'I want him…' she thought suddenly then her heart grew warmer with that thought. Her smile grew and she kissed his forehead gently. "Let's get you to your new home." She spoke softly and warmly.
The child nodded with a grin and nuzzled into her more and closed his eyes with a smile enjoying her warmth.
Heart walked up the stairs to her apartment and opened the door and walked in all while looking down at the small now asleep bundle in her arms.
She began to softly coo over the little boy. "Ooh, such a little cutie...I wanna snuggle you forever..."
Saki looked up from where she was cooking in the kitchen. "Heart?!" She called out. "I thought you went to work!" She didn't get a response from her friend. Frowning, she stepped out of the kitchen. "Heart?!"
"-And then give you cake, and-"
The bluenette frowned and followed the sound of Heart's voice. She was thinking that Heart must have found another stray animal... "Where are-"
She froze when she saw her friend holding what looked to be a baby in her arms.
'That's no stray animal' she thought with wide shocked eyes.
Heart did not notice her friend as she continued to gaze down lovingly at the sleeping child. "-I'll give you nice clothes to wear, like little dyno shirts and maybe even a panda suit for Halloween" she giggled softly. "That would be soooo cute!"
Heart jumped at the loud noise and the boy started to stir by the loud noise, but with a light coo and a soft kiss the boy was back in dream land. Heart let out a relived sigh before she gave her friend and annoyed pout. "Keep it down Saki! You could have woken him!" she scolded in a whisper.
Saki's eyes twitched at her friend. "Wake him, tell me why you have a child in your arms and in our apartment!" she demanded. "I know you bring strays home, but this is borderline kidnapping!"
Heart tightened her hold on him and sniffled. Saki's expression softened. "...Heart?"
"It's not kidnapping if I'm taking him away from an alley...Where he was abandoned..." The pink-haired woman said softly. Saki's eyes widened.
"Yes...He was in a box, all by himself...And that's not all..."
Saki frowned as Heart pulled up the boy's shirt. And then, she promptly recoiled.
Heart nodded with a sad frown, she lowered his shirt and just held the boy close. Saki watched this with now sad and guilty eyes. "What are you going to do with him?" she asked him.
Heart gave her friend a soft yet sad smile. "I'm going to be his mother."
"Volume Saki!" Heart warned as she rocked the squirming boy who had flinched in his sleep at the loud noise and now was having what seemed like a nightmare.
Hearts eyes grew wide as she kissed his forehead. "Baby? Honey come on wake up sweetheart."
The baby groaned and shifted, before he let out a loud cry of "Unkey" as he woke with wide scared eyes.
"Unkey?" Heart tilted her head. "There's no Unkey here! It's just me, you're new favourite person!" Harry looked up at her and sighed in relief.
"Unkey no..." He said softly.
"That's right. Unkey no." Heart nodded.
Saki smiled. "Hmm...I was just cooking lunch, so if you're hungry, let's have some."
"Wha hungy?" The child asked.
"Hungry is when your tummy needs food." Heart explained, giving him a playful poke on the belly.
His giggled warmed both girl's hearts. They walked into the kitchen, Heart sitting down with Harry in her lap. He could barely look over the table as he was. She smiled and lifted him and sat him on the table, she scooted close and hugged him from behind causing him to giggle and snuggle into her more.
Saki smiled warmly at her and the small child, she was able catch onto what the child was saying and it made her furious at the thought of his family abandoning this adorable little boy. Heart didn't seem to catch it though. She let out a soft sigh. She can tell her latter.
She took a deep breath and finished up what she was making. Some simple spaghetti and meatballs, was their dish tonight, 'It's easy for the little guy to eat too' she thought with a smile.
She made a plate and walked over and placed it in front of the confused Harry who looked at the noodles and then back up at Saki then at Heart and tilted his head to the side.
"SO CUTE!" Heart said with well hearts in her eyes and Saki just smiled softly though internally she was doing the same thing.
Heart snapped back into focused really quick as she lifted up the boy and placed him back on her lap. She moved the plate down so it was now on his lap, and she spun the fork to capture the noodles. She lifted it up to his mouth. "Say ahhh!" she said with a smile.
"Ahhhh" the boy responded and got a fistful of the most amazing thing he has ever tasted.
"Yummy!" He said happily, rubbing his tummy. Heart clutched at her heart.
"Agh! The cute! It's lethal! I'm dead." She went limp. Saki rolled her eyes.
Harry frowned and poked at her with his little finger. "Okay...?" He asked timidly. Heart smiled and perked up.
"Your cuteness killed me AND made me better. You're a special little guy!" She cheerfully patted his head and he giggled. "Now let's have some more supper! Here comes the yum-yum train~!"
"Yum yum!" Harry said before opening his mouth. The fork came and he opened his mouth.
Soon enough, Harry finished his supper.
Harry rubbed his tummy all full with amazing food. Heart gently lifted him up and patted him on the back causing him to let out a cute burp. She giggled. "There we go." She giggled.
Saki watched this with a smirk as she took the plates and placed them in the sink. "Looks like he's getting sleepy Heart." She said.
Indeed, the little boy's eyes were starting to droop, since he was full he was now very tired. Heart smiled warmly down at him and stood up. "It's time for a nap baby." She cooed in his ear. The little boy nodded as he snuggled into her causing the girls smile to widen.
"When you have him down, meet me in the living room. We need to talk" Saki said softly as she walked into the room to wait for her friend.
Heart watched her go with concern before shrugging and walking up to her room. She opened the door and gently laid the little boy down on her bed. She tucked him in nice and snug, and the boy was out like a light. She smiled down warmly at him and kissed him on the side of the head. "Sweet dreams baby." She whispered in his ear causing him to smile.
She closed the door softly and walked into the living room where her friend was waiting for her. "What's up Saki?"
"Before you take him as your child, we need to find his old relatives…and you need to understand exactly what happened Heart." She stressed slowly.
"What do you mean?" She asked with a frown.
"Heart, he was abused."
Heart felt her chest clench when she heard those words...But she also knew that they were the truth.
"I didn't wanna believe it at first...But...I know..." She said softly. "I know he was..."
Saki sighed and put a hand on her friend's shoulder. "I know you hate seeing others hurt...Especially by people that are supposed to be family..."
"Yeah..." Heart replied. But then she smiled. "But you know what? Since he's here now, I can give him the love that his old family wouldn't!"
Saki smiled at her friend. "You do that." Her smile turned into a stern look however. "We still need to find the people who did this to him. I'll do my part and try and find anyone who can identify him as well as those who hurt him."
Heart nodded with narrowed eyes. "If I ever find them-" she said her voice darker then Saki had ever heard.
"WE will deal with them together. The boy has a family that loves him now. We stick out for one another!" Saki said with a confident smile.
Heart nodded with tears in her eyes. "Go be with him. I'll clean the dishes this time." Her friend said and walked into the kitchen.
"Thanks, Saki." Heart said gratefully. The bluenette turned to give her a nod.
Rising to her feet, Heart walked upstairs to her bedroom. Harry was lying in his bed, curled up in a ball. He was whimpering softly...
Heart's eyes widened and she approached him, placing her hand on his cheek. She looked over to see one of her decorative teddy bears. She picked it up and placed it in the boy's hands.
He grabbed it and smiled softly as he cuddled the small bear. "Soff..." He mumbled.
Heart smiled at the young boy and gently got into bed with him. The boy seemed to notice as he snuggled into her still clutching his teddy bear. The girl's smile grew and she wrapped her arms around him. "I will never let you go." She whispered in his ear. "I will never see you in pain." "I will be with you forever…my baby." She whispered and kissed his forehead.
The boy curled into her and Heart felt her own eyes droop. She held the child close and closed her eyes with a smile. "Goodnight…my baby" she said and drifted off to sleep with the child nuzzled next to her.