"Literally at this second
Like in everything that's happening in the world
being a human is pretty much the hardest thing to be." – Lonely Star by Oh Wonder.
Chapter 1: "Tyler, my baby girl. Tyler."
I've read many a story about my own predicament I now find myself in. We've all had those thoughts of at some point of our lives; we've all sat and discussed the possibilities. We all watched the shows of people remembering things from their past lives as they leak into their daily everyday lives, overlapping them as two beings. We debated and dreamed, we talk about the religions and non-religious theories. But nobody truly knew the answers to the thousands of questions we had. I doubt I'll ever have the answers even while living it.
I can't remember my birth or who gave birth to me; a lot of my early years were blurry and hard to focus on. A baby brain wasn't made to contain my knowledge and in a way, was a blessing. The few things I remember reading in my last life about those being reborn had traumatic memories of the womb. I'm so happy that hadn't happened to me.
The few actual memories I have were being handed over to a young lady, her soft hazel eyes gazing down on me. Another was a couple years later, were I was starting to grips on the language I was brought up around. I was about four years old washing my hands in the bathroom sink; I came to notice where I had been placed fully that day. It finally registered for me, besides the nagging in the back of my head.
Another girl with long blonde pigtails with her face stained red as she cried on top on one of the toilet seats, the image imprinted into my mind. She had her hand wrapped around her legs. she was a utter tiny mess. She was three years older then I at the time. I dried my hands quickly when the sobs finally reached my ears, I remember my little feet rushed to the toilet space she had shut herself into, the one she seemed to have forgotten to lock the door when she had scurried in earlier. The door squeaked as I pushed it open, the sight wasn't something entirely new. I have always been surrounded by other children in this life, they always cried about something.
"Why, why didn't they want me?" She croaked, her throat dry, tired from the endless steams of tears that run down her cheeks. She was one of the new members to have arrived recently at the time. "Why did they leave me here?"
I reached for her, wrapped her much bigger hands in my own scrawny ones. I had bitten my lip before taken a breath, "Did you know them?"
Her pigtails bounced. "No." she whispered back, head hung low as she sniffled. "But I remember, someone singing to me."
"Then maybe they didn't have a choice." I replied, "The world is never kind and maybe, just maybe they wanted something better for you." She looked up, new tears built at the corner of her eyes. She let her legs go and gave me her full attention.
"Maybe." She nodded, her hand squeezed mine.
"Would," I started, I looked up at her, noticing her pale blue eyes under the ocean of tears for the first time. "You share that song with me?"
She nodded. That night we shared a bed as she sang the lullaby to me, she sang it like it was her own anthem and I had treasured it. The next month, she had been adopted and I had never heard from her again. She was the one to make me fully register that I was indeed in an orphanage that day. I cried when she left with handful of waves and the promise that she'll write us. She never did, her name faded from my mouth and mind. So many came and went that I couldn't contain all that information, so I gave up in remembering. I just gave them the smallest curtsey I could give them, kindness.
The next potent memory was when I was seven; one of the carers came and sat with me one night, nothing fully unusual. Yet curiosity sparked in her hazel eyes as she watched me read a scientific book voluntarily. I had an overwhelming thirst for knowledge in this life. This beautiful brain absorbs information like a sponge and I fully intend to take advantage of it; Compared to my last life I found it hard to study. Nothing could and would stick even if you tried to use gorilla glue, it just always came undone.
I put a bookmark into the book. Marking the page about the human antimony as I huff, I didn't like being distracted from my further studies. But her eyes burnt into the side of my head like a magnifying glass to an ant hill, she wanted to talk that was for sure. I looked up at her, a glare sat on my face that probably looked adorable with my chubby cheeks and panda eyes, from my seat on the carpeted floor. She smile widely at me, she sat beside me in similar manners of our legs crossed. "Yes?" I asked, fingers lightly tapped on the cover of the book. Saying talk now for you has asked for my divine attention.
"You aren't like the other children, are you?" She gazed over us all in that settled in the library. Someone was bickered in the corner of the room with another with a magazine between them, another covered in paint on a table nearby, highly engrossed in their artistic creation. Some littered about doing their homework, they tried so hard to complete the work last minute. A normal afternoon before dinner. I tilt my head at her in confusion, what did she mean? "You never ask about your parents." She answers.
I bitterly chuckle at that. "Why even try asking, you can't tell any of us those private details until we're of age. Or we get adopted and they decide to tell us, if there is anything to be told. Some of us could've just been left here with no signing of paper from our guardians." I looked down at my skinny fingers.
She patted my short white-greyish hair. "I met your father when he first brought you in as a baby." She whispered, "Your mother had died in giving birth due to complications." There was a pang, it was strange. Even if I never knew this mother, images of my previous mother filled my vision. A woman who could turn mountains for her children, a woman who would make everyone feels safe and welcomed. I had been graced once upon a time with a loving mother, I was lucky to have memories of that. Something a lot of those around me never had or will experience. I missed her.
Her words had woken me from my thoughts as she continued; she patted my head softly as in comfort. "You were the youngest of three; you had an older brother and sister who were taken in by your grandparents. Your family all together couldn't provide for you all, so they decided it be best you give you a better life start here as you were just a baby." They had loved me.
I felt the rippling bubbles in my throat as she spoke and I grasp my chest with my little fingers. I was thankful, that I was left here for a good reason. "Thank you." I told her that day, I felt something lift from my shoulders that day. A weight I didn't believed I had been carrying up till then. I hadn't realised, I cared about the idea of being ditched, left on the streets in the cold. They hadn't, that's amazing.
When I hit the age of ten, I finally felt fully awake in my consciousness mind. That the world wasn't soaked in blurs. At this point of my life, I had gone through quite a few interviews for a home, for a family. Everyone had felt wrong so far, we always agreed we weren't for each other; it never hurt since I had a plan in place if nobody ever wanted me. It was more tiresome after each one being the same results. I dug myself further in my personal studies, further into every corner of the library and tutor lessons. To learn anything and everything I could get my scrawny hands on. Maybe it did hurt but I wouldn't ever voice it.
And here I was curl at the end of one of the many book shelves surrounded by books, hiding from the world as I read. This was my favourite place in the whole of the orphanage, being a big reader in my past life had easily carried itself over here. Plus, we didn't have a television and we all listen to music or news on the radio in the living room in the evenings heavily monitor by the staff. The old world war relic of a radio had been donated to us; the staff didn't want sticky little fingers touching it.
Sometimes, I find myself wishing for my touch screen phone. Missing the advance technology I grew up with. Yet I always shook it off and got back to reading or studying. This is where the staff always found me, usually deep in a book or napping against the wall with a book on my lap. This was a first to be found by a guest here, they very rarely were allowed to wonder around the orphanage alone unless they were one of our many investors; who usually came around for a monthly check.
A ruff, warm hand shook my shoulders. I must've fallen asleep once again while reading, I touch the hand lightly with my own, something the Staff knew meant I was wakening and they can stop. They hum deeply, as I crack my eyes open, I find myself jumping out of my socks and shoes. I fell backwards atop the books I had earlier gathered, almost falling back into my nest of papers and hardback. A small, uncontrolled squeak left my lips as I tried to get my breath back. The person was someone I had never seen so up-close before.
The man I had squeaks at began to chuckle at my reaction in which I bet looked very amusing from his angle, "Sorry, I didn't mean to scare you." He murmured softly. The window light glimmered over his shoulders, he had look like a massive shadow from this angle and I could see the twitch of the corner of his lips.
I stare at him before remembering to bow politely. "No, I should be sorry. I shouldn't have fallen asleep in the library." I grip my jumper sleeves into my hands. Unlike a good half of the girls here, I wore mainly baggy trousers and tops and jumpers. I always prefer comfort over skirts and dresses. I often got mistaken for a boy by others plus being an overly pale in skin, it was better to cover more to stop the chances of being burnt when summer came around. I learnt that the hard way.
He sat down with me, to the side so the light could gather around him. He no longer looks like giant shadow when he sat down on the floor. Sometimes, I had to remember I was ten and it was normal to feel minuscule compare to the adults. He patted beside him, "let say we're both sorry, umm..?" He replied.
"Tyler." I told him, as I took a seat opposite him. He was still a stranger, plus it was easier to read and see him from this angle. He had dark muddy brunette hair tied up into a bun and sharp bright honey-dew coloured eyes, a scruff growing around his chin. He wore smart black suit attire and a bright blue tie, his shoes were the kind that were made with real leather and had intricate designs into them. "You, Sir?"
It wasn't strange for guests, especially investors to talk to the children here. Though, this was a personal first for any of them to talk to me in the whole eight years and half-ish I had been living here. He smiles softly at me, "Honyaku, Sousuke." He bows his head in a soft greeting. His hands and eyes gliding through the books I had been reading until he grasps a non-native book, flipping through it in surprise. "You can read English?" He questions, noting the mixture of Japanese and English book littered on the floor.
English came as easy as breathing; my first words had been in English. Though that what the staff had told me; which they even further informed me, it was much harder for me catch onto Japanese compared to the other children, as all I wanted to speak was English. "Yes, it was the first language I spoke." I answer truthfully, my past life I had been European and the language I had been brought up with was English.
"Oh, you speak it as well? I'm surprised considering I'm sure they don't educate you kiddies on languages here." His tongue slurring on some of the words in English, as though it has been while since he last spoke it.
"I self-taught myself, I self studied because I truly love learning new things." Not a slur upon my lips, my speech more confident under my birth tongue, but it was a first time speaking to another who could speak and understand the language. His eyebrows rose in shock, most likely surprised a ten year old out did him.
"How long have you been here Tyler?" He changes the subject, as we bask in the sunlight.
"Eight years and half-ish." I mutter, "Almost all my life, I haven't known anything else."
He hummed, he ruffle my hair as he look at his sliver watch. He jumps up onto his feet in a rush almost ready to dash before looking back down to me. "I'll come back kid, just got an important meeting to go to!" with those words he paddle his way out of here, muttering about someone was going to kill him if he was late. I couldn't help giggle at his antics. A small part was hoping I'll see him again, but I knew there no point in that. I went back to tidying up my area, putting all the books back before I have to help in the kitchen for dinner. The day past with my usual routine, dinner and help wash up. Back to library for our last tutor session and then a few hours of free time, which I take a book in the living room and listen to the radio with the other kids. Then bed where I end up staying up reading until I fall asleep with the book on my face.
The staff long time ago gave up trying to separate me from any book, they always woke me up with a book near me, on me or wrapped in my arms. I had nothing here but to learn, to study. You can't get attached here, people don't stay long. I was a rare exception but wasn't unusual to be someone who staggering on the adoption line. I was a strange child, one that couldn't be easily moulded like the many that lay around me. I had already tons of impressions on me, already filled with world ideals and open eyes to very slowly changing world. I had opinions and thoughts that many kids wouldn't even know how to discuss, my only really intriguing quality to those who interviewed me in the past have been those who seen my almost perfect score cards. Something I would found untameable in my last life, felt almost like a breeze in this one. Then we talk, they grimace and I know this will never work for either of us.
A lot of the families who wanted me, always assumed I was a male with brilliant academic brains yet I was little kid still so I would be easily become what they wanted. That they could mould me in their ways and values, some wanted a son to take on their tradition and one day take on their business one day. Then I'll correct them, tell them my gender, slash their traditions and we'll end it there. Sometimes my gender alone is enough for them to turn their backs on me; some of these people are stupid because it written on the paperwork they're given. Their only been a few genuine people just looking to give someone a home, though they always went for the prettiest girl or the boy with the cracked tooth. Most genuine people easily overlooked the scraggily and scrawny kid in the back with the book far too big for her body.
"Tyler." My favourite Carer called, Carol. Her hazel eyes caught my muddy ones as I look up from my book to give her my full attention. I hum in reply and she claps happily, "You've got an interview, come, come."
I doggy ear the page I was reading and painstakingly left it in the chair I had been sitting on. I follow Carol out of the living room, a little feeling of shock at the news .I kept my mouth shut. Usually we'll get a week notice of a chance of an interview with a family or person. Very rarely would we get such unannounced random interviews, they were only given to the few such as employees, investors and those who can paid for that sort of disruption in the system Cough. Bribery. Cough.
We stood outside the interview room; Carol quickly tires to fix my hair and clothes. Trying with her own might to make me look more presentable. I find myself giggling at her as she re-buttons my shirt that I had thrown on this morning, rolling up my sleeves so they look less crinkly. She patted down my trousers. Once my clothes looked better, she brought a comb out and quickly neatens my hair that usually frays everywhere like I touch something with static. She smiles at me softly when she put the comb back into her pocket. "Behave." She warns me and I nod, she never gives me the full lecture for I have never done anything against their ruling.
I gave her a toothy grin,"I promise." She pats my head in approval and pushes me to the door as to say You know the routine by now. I nod once more and she leaves as I knock on the door. The door to our personal interview room, it was one of the more luxury room meaning that this definitely someone of high standards.
"Come in. "a more elderly, gruff voice answers to what I had been expecting. Part of me had hoped it had been the man from last week. I told myself for thinking that and pushed the door open and with a soft shut behind me, I bow politely to my guests.
"Hello Sir, thank you for asking for this interview." I spoke, a line that left my lips with ease. Something I have said to many times in my small life as Tyler. I look up to see the red velvet chairs cross from each other and a table with a traditional tea set ready for me to present to them my basic skills in preparing. I knew the test, seen it multiple times. These old rich families all had the same idea. Rich people.
I walk to the other couch to the elder gentleman, reading in his profile; he wore cream cord trousers and blue shirt with white suspenders. His eyes similar to mine with the darker, murky brown colour yet his hair matched as well though no stubble sat on his face. Glasses sat on top of his head which I guess he had been using for the newspaper that now set beside him; they were the kind that had a chain to his front pocket. He wasn't skinny, he had more a build and what some would call a beer belly.
He hums, his own eyes looking me over as I did him. I could already see the subtle of confusion of his face before opening his mouth. "My son and his partner sadly couldn't come to interview you due to their work."He tells me as he sits further back, not looking interested in the tea set at all. I take that as queue that I can take a seat myself. "Though I don't know what he finds so interesting in you." He mutters gruffly to himself in English.
I grin at that, "Then I guess we can find out together, Sir? Most are usually interested in my academia scores here yet I doubt that was what your son was interested in."
He splutters for a second before laughing, he had not been expecting that. He looks me over once more and nodded. "I think I know what caught his interest now." He answers, before picking up my paperwork with eases as he pulls his glasses. "Why don't you make us tea while I read this over?"
"Okay sir." I bow once more. I take the tools and with familiarity of the routine made us both teas, leaving the guest to add their own sugar, if they want any. I would've asked but he had already added it himself without looking away from the papers. Something that felt strange, most rich folk couldn't wait to criticise me on my technique. But have you tried to prepare tea with tiny hands and wobbly muscles that strain much quicker than it would for an adult?
"You technique is good for a kid." He complements as he puts the papers down. "I have some questions I'll like you to answer." He switches up, his attention on me while taking a sip of his tea. His eyes watching me closely as I nod my head.
"How often are you mistaken as a boy, Tyler?" He asks. It was strange, the whole interview was strange. Most would introduce themselves in which I would then introduce myself; we talk as if trying to get to know a stranger. This man however ignores all that, plays around me as if trying to puzzle pieces together. What is he trying at?
"Every time." I slip out, "It's never bothered me, and it usually does for those looking for an heir." Gender didn't bother me in my last life and neither it did here, I cared for my studies far more.
He nods at that, "yes, well not all gentlemen and ladies can keep up with the moving world." He smirks at that. "I have an offer if you're interested."
This man was intriguing; he wasn't like the other folks who wondered in here. He felt like the rare kind who move with the constant twirling world, who accepts that change. I wouldn't be surprised if he had been in some kind of movement in his youth for a change of a better world. I like this grandpa figure. He wasn't the overly loving type, that was obvious and something I didn't need. He shown care in subtle movement and words, he seem the kind who plays the world like a game of chess. Ready to mess with all the players, to confuse them with his turns and baffle them once he wins. Chaotic genius type.
"And what would that offer be?"
"To hide your gender and pretend that you are my son's adopted son." He answers, "Your true gender will only be between us family members." I hum, asking him to continue. "If you accept this, we'll take you in as our own, raise you, help expand your studies and one day, you will take over the business."
"And what business do you run?" I asked, his eyebrows quirks amazed I did not know. "I've only know these walls, sir, I do not know much of the outside world." I knew the world in the not too far future and in a different country but not here, in Japan.
He nods understandingly, "Honyaku is a family business that mainly translates and publishes many books, comics and manga in which we tribute both in the western world and Japan. Means you'll have more excess to exclusive and rare books."
My eyes spark at that and without a thought; I put my hand out to him. "You have a deal Honyaku-san."
I signed the deal with the devil all for books. Idiot.
This is my first try at Ouran series, An anime I have loved dearly for years. Plus this is a bigger contrast to my other fanfic I am writing, were it more action based and aliens. This is more based on the real world and emotions. The first few chapters is going to be more on the this character growing up in the ouran universe, maybe meet some chubby host members in the future, who knows. As well I love reincarnation fics and notice there's barely any for this series. I'm not suprised, considering there isn't the whole 'Holy hell, I'm in BLANK,I'mma gonna die.' and more the build up of the characters and generic cheesiness and laughter of the over confident and awkward teenagers growing up in this strange rich world.
Plus, I am open for an Beta reader! I'm not a perfect writer and no matter the thousands of times I reread the words, things do sadly slip through.
Thank you for reading and I hope you'll join my journey of this story.
09/04/2020 Update: Just edited some mistakes on the chapter, small things like 'cool'-call ect. I may have still have missed some of these silly errors, so I will try to keep fixing them over time, if you see anything I'll be thankful for you to pointing it out (if you quote it that will be very highly helpful, I keep rereading but no human is perfect at seeing everything.)