A/N: Hello again! This is the final story to Your Hiro Inside and I'll Always Know It Was You. This takes place exactly six months after the events of the previous two stories and deals with greater themes of finding your place in the world and of truly entering adulthood...
And who and what you can and cannot keep.
You don't understand this yet...
But people need you.
"I don't know about this, pal..." Hiro nearly stammered with his toes touching the rim of the big balloon. "It was one thing to design a test model... and another to watch you play it for me against my wishes."
The robot hovered gently in the air before him, morning sunlight just beginning to brim his big form and all the floating generators around him. Hiro looked at himself in his new flight suit, then grinned with a little irony at Baymax; He thought the bot would have more concerns.
"Your Occipital Lobe is sending rather unusual signals, Hiro."
The teen tightened his smile into an anxious grit, looking down again.
"Have you been free-range downloading again, buddy?" He said with some concern himself; literally because self-autonamy was forbidden.
A scientific taboo. The robot was nothing but clinical in his reply.
"Yes," Baymax lowered down closer to him, then softly, "What are you imagining, Hiro?" His "friend" voice made the boy look up into his eyes and see his own reflected in Baymax's clear visor. He smiled.
"I was just imagining you as a giant robot again and standing on you."
The robot cocked his head. "You trust in my abilities to protect you."
Hiro edged a little closer, chuckling. His deep-blue suit was one of a reimagined diving one he used to have. He looked down at the rim of of the balloon again, imagining it as Baymax's huge white belly, then clenched his hands and brought forth his wings. Big hands, ones that handled delicate babies and then smashed through concrete, took his sides and lifted Hiro up. Together, they both drifted up into open air.
"Hiro, do you recall when you and Wasabi took Young Huan on his first outing to the swimming pool?" Hiro nodded slowly. "And your method of teaching him to self-propel in water?" His friend made a face. Baymax blinked at him. "Do you trust in me?" He asked Hiro.
"Of course I do." The boy said, still not following his logic in this.
"Then I believe the same principles may apply."
The robot dropped Hiro quite deliberately.
"Well, now, say, "Ahhhh," Doctor Tanaka held out a large, flat stick.
Huan Hamada-Yu opened his little mouth like he was about to sing in a choir. Grinning, the Korean doctor checked inside and then held out a small, dabbed cotton ball. Huan raised his arm helpfully with a little grin himself. The man, surprised, blotted and then injected him.
"My, my, quite the helpful lad."
Cassandra Yuri chuckled nervously. "It helps to have a nurse in the family." Dian Yu smiled while "Baymax" circle-waved at Huan. "He's our Little Man... er, Huan." She sighed. "But before you know it he'll grow up and go off to college, too." "Baymax" patted her arm gently.
"Well, kindly give my regards to my niece." He set the boy down.
"Your kind regard has made me consider a worthwhile profession."
Cassandra smiled at the tall, short-haired Dian Yu as she picked up the child that ran into her arms. The boy turned suddenly to the big, white robot and pouted. "Bee-max, why don't I get a lawl-la-pop?"
"Oh, well I assumed since the boy..."
Dian was slightly stern. "We must be gracious, Wo du Zhizi."
"Pleaze why don't I get a lawl-la-pop?.!"
Dr. Tanaka gave a nervous laugh. "A very advanced boy for three... Tell me son," He leaned forward. "Will you be a doctor someday?"
"No," Huan told him matter-of-factly.
"Oh... you told me Hiro's paternal grandfather was a doctor. And a nurse on the Hamada side?" He looked up at them. Dian shrugged. "Well, how about a scientist like your cousins? Or Kung-Fu like-,"
"I'ma be a SUPERhero!" His gold-brown eyes shined.
Aunt Cass touched her lips in amusement.
"Well," the doctor straightened up, smiling at this age-appropriate answer the toddler had given him. "Of course you do! Every little-,"
"An' a robot."
"-Boy thinks he's going to-,"
"An' fly around and save pee-ple and-!"
"Be a hero." He struggled to get out over the boy's enthusiam. When he finally did breathe, the man turned to Huan's unusual family. "I'm sure he'll grow out of this; A vivid imagination and pretend play is-,"
"No pretend!" Huan interrupted again.
Dian tried hushing him in sharp Mandarin.
"Excuse me?" The doctor ignored her, looking at the boy.
Cassandra and the suited robot exchanged a This-can't-be-good look.
Huan continued excitedly yet quietly, "I'ma be a real hero, just like-,"
He was suddenly in Baymax's hands and his mouth was covered.
"Bmm-mm! Amd fwght bahh giis lwke Hwro dess and Bmm-mm!"
Cassandra took the robot's arm to steer him out while Dian expertly placed the strap of the baby bag over one shoulder and bowed once towards him in refined submission. The foursome left with the tiny boy hollering muffled noises about how he was going to be a hero.
The tall, dark-haired man leaned back against the examination table.
"A real hero, indeed," he traced his face slowly with his fingers.
"Well..." Aunt Cass sighed loudly as she entered the cafe, stalking towards the bulbous, futuristic counter and snatching a chocolate muffin out. "That was... something. Now I remember why I avoid doctors as much as helped." Her first instinct was to scarf it down before Baymax or Dian caught her, but the bubbling little boy who ran towards her was so disarming she smiled and surrendered it to him. He grinned and almost started into it before a throat cleared.
Dian set his bag down by the door and scolded him in Mandarin.
"That really isn't necessary," Cassandra collapsed inside a booth.
"I am Huan's legal guadian until Mei comes of age," she said with measured patience. Aunt Cass was a mother figure to her and Mei very much a beloved sister, but the last month had tried them all... particularly Dian who found herself responsible for her nephews.
"Oh, let him have it," Meikomo smiled as she entered from back. Everything from her dress to her hair was coated in flour, a small, quiet six-month-old Hiroshi tottered after her, "After the lives we lived, don't you believe a little fun is in order, cousin?" She asked.
"Certified healthcare and state-approved education is what all was ordered, cousin. And no 'Robo nursemaid and kids teaching kids'."
Dian sighed and went over to sit opposite Aunt Cass, who reached over to pat her arm. Grimacing — mostly in response to the stress from legal concerns the social worker's visits had wrought over the last few weeks — she handed over the other source of her grimace.
"What is that?" The young woman sighed again, covering her face.
"If it's in Mandarin, I can't read it," her seventeen-year-old, yet still very inexperienced cousin joked. The young woman looked listlessly at her adopted aunt, who transcribed to her in nearly perfect Chinese:
'Our many months apart have been, in some ways, more difficult for me than the ten years we were.' — " 'Difficult for you '," Dian almost growled into her hands. Huan ate his muffin quietly while he stood by his mother and brother. — But the inheritance I have imparted to the cafe and Aunt Cass is nothing to what is left for you, Mei, Hiroto and my two-' The letter was snatched from her hand and lobbed without a single attempt at dignity towards the trash can. She stood and turned.
"Dian..." Mei pleaded while Cassandra reached for her.
"Enough! I have had.. all I can take."
"Honey, it's not like you're the first-,"
Her tone was a razor blade in Mandarin, "I said, 'Enough!' "
GoGo suddenly swung inside, her ponytail trailing in after her.
"Is Hiro here?.!" She asked immediately. "His lawyer and Mr. Lang the social worker will be here any minute and he still has to have all checkpoints for the month filled out to-," Dian made a loud noise of frustration, throwing up her hands and stalking out of the room even at the mere mention of the separate situation that was going on now.
"The boy is nearly Hua's age when he and Mei first had Huan!" She was thudding up the stairs now. "College, superhero-ing, a brain in which rivals the most brillant in the world, perhaps he should move on so we may focus on-," Her voice was lost by the door slamming.
Cassandra dropped her shoulders with a shudder, then remembered.
"Hiro! Oh my gosh, you're right. Where-?"
"Hey all!" The fifteen-year-old came up from downstairs, his blue helmet under one arm and his other revealing a bloated envelop of good marks on his copied records. "What'd I miss? Meltdown city?"
Hiro shot a grin at his aunt and Mei; Dian's outburts were hilarous.
"Heer-ooo!" Huan moved quickly to grab at his cousin's leg.
"Hey, buddy!" he imparted his helmet to Baymax in the doorframe, then struggled to scoop the heavy boy up in his free arm. "Lookin' good. How'd the-?" Huan immediately turned to Baymax, fist out.
The robot cocked his head and they touched knuckles.
Meikomo giggled. Aunt Cass and GoGo grimaced in anticipation.
"Ba-lalalalala!" All three chanted together.
"Should start a tribe," GoGo noted with a smirk.
Hiro noticed her suddenly as the two of them were rarely apart, but rarely not in all of Big Hero 6's company. She had grown her hair to her back, started dressing in a white leather, black-striped jacket with zebra-like tights, black jumper and an ivory stripe down her bangs. It took him a moment to realize the irony in her eyes at his own change.
"Uh..." He grinned coolly and placed the child down. " 'Kay, I got all my stuff." Aunt Cass suddenly hugged her nephew tightly and the big, white robot caught them both up. "Guys, I'm fine. I'm... really ready."
"You can do it, Hiro." His aunt looked him in the eyes surely.
"Today's the day," GoGo smiled confidently as Baymax nudged him forward a bit. The boy hadn't realized he was suddenly nervous then.
"You must trust in your abilites," he told him softly.
"Right." The figures at the glass door froze him.
"And I will be with you," Baymax pressed his hand closer to him, not so much to nudge him on as to assure him. Hiro nodded his way now.
Then, feeling him there in body and mind, started forward.
"Hi Baymax," He told the suited figure he ducked under as he went out to meet with his caseworkers and hopefully finalize his release with all his good citizenship. The big figure tried squeezing inside.
"Hellllp!" Fred yelped helplessly in his costume.
"Fred, it helps to back up and then fit through a doorway sideways."
As the real Baymax went to help, Meikomo turned to Aunt Cass.
If she needed reassurance, she was there. But if she didn't-
"Welp, that's all done." Hiro suddenly re-appeared.
"Just like that?.!" Aunt Cass said in surprise.
"Pretty much," the teen grinned. His own height overtook GoGo's, even adding for the hair that now spilled into his eyes. He looked over at his family warmly. "Thanks for believing in me, you guys."
Baymax waddled up and hugged him to his side.
"And you, buddy, thanks for everything."
"You are welcome, Hiro." The robot came up to his other side.
While his best friend was with Meikomo putting Hiroshi to sleep, Hiro led Huan by the hand while the boy told him about his day. It was with a satisfying click of his self-locking door that Hiro found himself alone in his basement... well, he smiled down at the curious little black head that followed him, for the most part. He walked on.
"Hee-ro, can I see your scan-er?" Huan picked it up off the ground.
"That's my old one, g'head," he plopped down in his computer chair, rolling over and inserting his phone in to measure how he'd done his first day flying solo versus the simulation he and Baymax had made.
"When you make new up-graydes?"
"Not right now, Huany." He saw how miserably he had performed and groaned. "Hey!" the teen turned. "You wanna see something?"
"Yeah," Huan ran over, holding the scanner in his hand, "Sim-ul-a-tion again..." He tugged on Hiro's sleeve and pointed hasily towards the lit-green form of him soaring through the sky like a shooting star.
Baymax had suggested that it was a bit unrealistic at the time, but all Hiro had seen was himself bursting through the stratosphere... and it was no doubt from all the stories he had told Huan about how it'd be.
"Eh... maybe later." A quick click before Huan could see a replay of him free-falling to earth with his partner swooping down to rescue from his partner's point-of-view. "Come on," he took his hand, "We gotta do this and fast. It's gonna be busy tonight and we gotta move."
"Why?" Huan stumbled a little to keep up. Hiro slowed down and went to adjust something on his work station while Huan watched.
"Sorry," He grinned down at the boy breathlessly and yanked off a small sheet, "Just gotta make some adjustments." His little cousin just smiled back patiently, dropping down on his bottom similiar to when he used to sneak in and slide on his diaper down the staircase.
This, at his family's insistence, was the reason for the instant lock.
Hiro chuckled in memory.
"Okay, Huany." He went to one knee, holding an object behind his back. "This is a surprise, not a secret, remember? Because secrets..."
"Are lies," Huan told him.
"That's right." Hiro nodded once, recounting one of many times his family had sat together and talked. Trust was something that, led by Baymax, Honey and Meikomo, everyone agreed to work towards. It was a different, more responsible world Hiro Hamada lived in and one he strived to perfect. "So we're going to surprise everyone just before the ceremony tonight," He explained to the little boy, hoping he understood and trying not to feel like he would be disappointed.
" 'Surprise!' " The boy, still missing some teeth, grinned.
Hiro nodded, tugging up one side of his mouth, and flipped open a panel in the desk. He pressed down on one of two buttons and in the center of two nanoglass shelves were something shiny white with an orange stripe running down the middle. Huan made a little, airy noise.
His cousin's grin was more sheepish now. "I meant to give it to you on your third birthday, but, I was still sorta restricted with carbon-,"
He immediately clamped his hand over Huan's mouth.
"Yes, yes, super suit." Hiro hissed at him.
The alarm to the basement door went off.
"Ah man —," He looked up anxiously.
"Hiro? Huan?" Baymax asked.
"Bee-max!" The boy slipped out of Hiro's hands and raced towards the stairs. His cousin blanched and ran up to meet their puffy friend crammed in the doorjab with fluffy blueberry muffins on his hands.
"Hey, Maxie," Hiro followed up after Huan.
"Bee-max," Huan cuddled his face up against his tummy.
The robot blinked. "I do not recommend... high dosages of sugar for someone of Huan's age, Hiro. Though it does not cause hyperactivity, the results on his body-," Huan eagerly took a muffin, used to his big friend's healthcare talk, while Hiro smiled humoringly. "Could cause longterm affects. Such as: Diabetes, obesity...," His belly was poked.
"Well, you're sure not setting an example, pal." Hiro told him, then helped to squeeze his arms out of the frame. "Usually you remember to sidestep it down here, or use the steps like Huan." He grunted a bit.
The robot only remarked on one thing, blinking:
"My huggable design promotes excess weight gain?"
" 'Weight gain' !" And Huan ran excitedly past him.
The simple bot looked after him and didn't see Hiro's serious look.
"Baymax," He caught his big arm before he could trundle off after his excitable charge. "Look, you know how bad things get when we keep secrets from each other. Uncle Hasaki with his family past and when the others didn't tell me about my parents. I did too when I didn't just come back and-," Baymax took him in his arms and held him against his chip case. Hiro settled there a moment, before pressing up closer.
"We have resolved all issues, Hiro." The robot met his eyes. "And I will always trust you and be your friend," he promised the teenager.
"I know, pal." He sighed. "That's why I have something down there that's going to be a surprise tonight. It's... something I've wanted to show everyone for a while now. Y'know what I mean, right Max?"
Baymax blinked, cocking his head. "I believe I do, Hiro. You are saying that you finally wish to share with everyone what you hid down in the basement, and feel our family can appreciate it now?"
"Exactly," He almost grinned. "If you wouldn't mind getting it..."
"I do not mind, Hiro. This sanction will build onto our family."
"Hiro! Baymax! Time to go." Aunt Cass called out to them.
Huan's little clamors filled the air as the procession of Mei, GoGo, the boys, Aunt Cass and Fred went out the door. Hiro chuckled and gave Baymax one last hug, "You sure you got this? I can go get it..."
The robot squeezed him back. "I will retrieve your belongings, Hiro."
"Excellent!" Hiro told him and rushed off.
"And then," the robot amplified his voice, "Your driving lessons."
The boy stopped and gave a comically unsure moan.
"I value your desire for more freedom, Hiro, and you still have six months of lost time we are... making up," Baymax said innocently.
Hiro turned to look at him with a loving smile, then kept on going.
There was no downside to this. None.
To be continued...