Like the main character in my story, I'm a HUGE music nerd. It was even my major in college and I now teach it. Everything relates back to music for me so there's a few songs I wanted to share in case you ever felt inclined to listen. The songs 'Carnivore' and 'My Demons' by Starset make me think of Kyo and makes me want to give him a big hug; and the song 'I want to live' by Skillet feels like the unintentional theme song for the whole darn show! It also makes me think of Kyo's ending! I'm so excited for the final season! Its so good so far:) 'The Resistance' by Skillet is Tohru's song for me:) Both Starset and Skillet are also great bands that I highly recommend:) Also, the song 'Watching for Comets' by Skillet might be part of a significant plot point in this chapter so you definitely have to listen to that one at least:)

Chapter 9

After that day at Shigure's, Kyo called his sister a few times to discuss random things that came to him. They had several good, albeit still slightly awkward conversations. It's like Kyo just didn't know how to treat his sister. She just hoped he would eventually calm down and be himself.

Then that day in late May finally came. She took Luc early that day to spend the day and the following night with Mine. He was very excited to play with the enthusiastic woman. Ayame would be around that day as well to help Kyomi learned. Ayame and Mine were the closest thing her son had to an aunt and uncle. They had been good friends before her memory returned. Since they returned however, they had only gotten closer.

"Are you sure you want to spend today alone?" Mine asked as she took Luc's overnight bags from Kyomi.

"If I need to see someone, I will, but for now I think I just need to spend some time with my thoughts and memories." Kyomi responded with a sad smile. "I just need to be a little selfish today."

Kyomi gave her son a big hug and kiss which he enthusiastically returned before waving bye and leaving Luc with Mine. The shop was closed today but Mine had some things to do there still so Luc would be playing there for a while.

Mine closed the door of the shop as Ayame came around the corner in a bridal gown. "Mine! Can you please check this hem, my darling?"

Mine smiled at her boss and followed him and Luc into the back room so Ayame could step up onto the platform to raise the hem off the ground.

"How was Mi-chan Mine?" Ayame asked quietly as she made sure the hem was pinned straight before Ayame sewed it.

"Sad and quiet, but that's to be expected on days like today. You know it was their anniversary today too right?" Mine asked.

Ayame stared at Mine, "She never told me that! How could we have possibly left her alone on such a day! To find out you're one true love is gone on the most special day of your relationship is just too much to bear! I must tell Gure!" And with that Ayame swept back into the office to call his best friend. Mine just smiled having completed her goal. You're right Bossman, no one should be sad alone.

After hanging up the phone with Ayame, Shigure crossed his arms and put his fingers to his chin, contemplating how to be there for Kyomi without being a nuisance. She's worse than Hatori when she gets annoyed. So much like her brother… Shigure wandered back into the living room and watched the three teens doing their own thing. Tohru and Yuki were going to visit Ayame, but Kyo was free that day. I'm not sure that's a good idea either. Shigure thought as he imagined the two rather hot-headed siblings together.

"Ah ha!" Shigure said. The teens turned to look at him just realizing he was standing there. "Kyo, I have an errand I would like you to do for me." Shigure said as he walked to his office to grab a piece of paper. He wrote down some things he knew were Kyomi's favorites and gave the list to Kyo. "I'll pay you back, just bring me the receipt. Ayame called and apparently, he and Mine are watching Luc for Kyomi. She seems to have a migraine today and isn't feeling well. Could you be a dear and bring her these things to make her day a little easier? She's a little sensitive to light, so just leave everything at the door and knock quietly. I made sure that nothing on that list will spoil if she doesn't get it until later."

"She's sick? Why didn't she tell me?" Kyo sounded angry but was truthfully more worried and a little hurt.

"Would you like to watch a two-year-old all day long?" Shigure asked amused.

Kyo's eyes widened, and his face got a little red. "Are you crazy? I wouldn't even know what to do with the kid."

"Precisely. Don't worry. You can write her a note or something so that she knows you care." Shigure patted Kyo's head as he walked into his office and closed the door.

Kyo bristled at the contact and muttered under his breath, "Damn dog…." As he got up to go into town to the store.

"Wait Kyo! We will walk with you!" Tohru called as she drug Yuki up and they all left the house together.

Kyomi did indeed end up with a bad headache from the memories, but also from crying. She had returned home and had decided to do a little cooking. She had a new recipe she wanted to try, but it was super spicy so Luc wouldn't eat to. Today was the perfect time to try it out. Cooking was a way to keep her mind focused on a task, but she could also sing to her heart's content while she did. She turned on a band her husband had introduced her to and was thankful when she was able to smile at the memories of them listening to it together. Driving back and forth from college, while studying together in college, while she was cooking dinner for them in their new home as newlyweds, traveling Europe together… So many wonderful and fun memories she remembered as she cooked and sang. Until one specific song and then the tears started to flow. She hadn't really listened to the lyrics she was singing until the bridge stabbed straight through her heart.

Now I see you, I'm frozen in time
All your colors burst into life
I don't dare close my eyes
'Cause a love like this happens once in a lifetime

You were a comet and I lost it
Watching for comets, will I see you again?
Everybody needs someone but they can't feel like this
How can I breathe with this burning in my chest?
You were gone so fast, I want you back

You were a comet and I lost it
(Time to spread my wings and fly)
Watching for comets, will I see you again?
(Time to fly away so high)
You burn so bright, you burn me up tonight

As the song went on, she thankfully had the presence of mind to shut off the stove before she sank to the floor to let the tears fall. A small little black dog came and pushed her way into Kyomi's lap. "Lucy." Kyomi smiled through her tears before burying her face in her dog's side and continuing to cry.

Eventually the tears slowed and she lifted her head to snuggle and pet the dog. "You were named for another song by this band you know that Lucy girl. And your daddy picked you out even though he always denied it. I noticed you were the first puppy out of like eight of your siblings that he wanted to hold." She gave the dog a hug as Lucy gave her mother lots of kisses. Kyomi laughed, "You just like the salt goofy dog!" Knowing that it was only partly true. The dog had gotten very protective of Kyomi and Luc after everything they all had been through and Kyomi had gotten even closer to her best furry friend. She giggled and whispered in the dog's ear, "But don't tell Shi that." Kyomi stayed on the floor snuggling Lucy for a few minutes more before getting up, changing the music to some instrumental piano covers and turning the stove on to finish her lunch.

She finished cooking and ate humming along with the songs she knew. As she ate and listened to the piano music, a cover of a particular song came on and Kyomi just started laughing her head off. She remembered back to the time when her husband had already been sent away for training when they were engaged. They talked on the phone a lot since he was across the country. She had been studying and listening to music while they chatted one day. Then out of the blue he started singing her this song from a boy band of all things. She had stifled laughter at him, not wanting him to stop, and turned bright red. As the song finished, she wiped the tears of laughter from her face and then got quiet as a piece of piano music from her favorite movie started to play. She closed her eyes and listened to the piece until the end. Her playlist had ended so she sat in the silence for a minute. I haven't felt like playing piano for so long, will I even remember how? I can't believe after all this time I want to play so badly again! I thought I would never play again… Not wanting to lose her determination, she got up and went to sit at her keyboard.

She had been sitting at her keyboard trying to find something to play for ages. I used to love playing so much but all these pieces just have no appeal. She put away the folder of music from her senior recital she had been staring at for ages and pulled out a book of music she had had for much longer. She opened it to the first page and ran her hand over all the markings she had made over the years of practice. A few notes from previous piano teachers also graced the page and she let her mind wander back to high school and the feeling she would get while playing these pieces. She turned page after page, not really looking for any piece in particular, until she found a special one.

There were many repeated notes and she had had the piece memorized at one point so she was sure she could manage it if she went slowly. She started the piece with one hand, the other limp in her lap until it was time for her left hand to join. It was like her heart was finally home as she swayed in her seat along with her hand and feet movements along the pedals and keys. She barely registered the tears falling down her face as she finished the song and then restarted it intent now on polishing the piece back to its original perfection. It felt like her heart had finally found some peace.

When Kyo brought the bag of "get well" supplies to Kyomi's door, he stopped and listened. He pressed his ear to the door and listened to the piano music coming from inside. He heard a beautiful flowing melody, then some wrong notes, a quiet curse, and then the music would restart slowly and build speed again until the cycle repeated.

"Kyo?" He jumped when he heard his name and turned to see the family doctor standing there, eyebrow raised. "What are you doing?" Hatori asked the boy.

"I didn't know she played piano." Kyo responded quietly.

Hatori's eyed went wide and he replaced Kyo in listening with his ear to the door. Kyo watched the doctor's eyes glisten as he straightened up and put the small flowering plant in his hand at the door next to the bag Kyo brought.

"Today is not only her wedding anniversary, but the day she was told her husband had died in action. She hasn't played since then, if not since her family passed a few years before." Hatori said quietly. Kyo didn't reply but stared hard at the door.

"Why didn't she tell me?" He asked. "Shigure told me that she was sick."

Hatori watched the boy wrestle with his thoughts. "She doesn't want to add to your burden. She may not know everything about what has happened to you, but she can gather enough that she knows the last thing she wants to do is add to your pain."

"Well, I'm not a child anymore! I don't need protecting!" Kyo said a little too loudly.

Hatori glared hard at the boy and then realized the piano music had stopped and the dog was barking at the door. He grabbed Kyo's arm and drug him around the corner out of sight.

Kyomi opened the door to the bag of goodies and flowers at her door and shook her head. "Damn snake told…." She said as she picked up the note on the bag and then the flowers reading them in turn and smiling gratefully regardless of her annoyance. "Aw, even Kyo was thinking of me though I have a feeling that meddling puppy had something to do with that." She huffed a laugh as she picked the things up and shut the door behind her.

Around the corner, Hatori was smiling at her insights into their mutual best friends and Kyo was deep in thought. Did she think I wouldn't have cared if I knew she was hurting? Kyo continued down this train of thought until Hatori ruffled his hair. Kyo jumped and Hatori could have sworn he saw little cat ears in the boy's messy hair. "You should head home, Kyo. Ayame should have released Yuki and Tohru from his shop by now so they should be on their way home." Hatori turned to go with those words and Kyo turned in the opposite direction for home.

Inside, Kyomi had taken a break from practicing and had turned on her favorite historical movie. She was snuggled up with her Lucy, the cookies, snacks, and dark chocolate from Kyo and a glass of wine from her own fridge. Halfway through the movie found her fast asleep however, exhausted from the day.

Kyomi woke up hours later her streaming service playing a different movie. She untangled herself from her blanket and dog and noticed it was right before dinner. She was starving but had no energy to cook. Hmmm, I wonder if Shigure would mind if I invited myself over. I can always see if he's home. She called her friend whose phone quickly went to voicemail. She sighed, "Shigure, if you are pestering your editor again, I will call your agency, find her address, bring her with me and break down your door…" She was interrupted by the man in question picking up the phone in the middle of her rant. "Hello Mi-chan! Are you feeling better today?"

"Can it Gure, I know you told my brother what today was. I'm still annoyed with you, but thanks. Tori left some flowers too from him and Aya." Her cheeks turned slightly pink admitting Shigure might have been right for once. That's not an easy thing to admit after all.

"You are very welcome! My genius can only be surpassed by the beauty of your music my dear!" Shigure continued to flatter her piano playing but he was cut off.

"KYO HEARD ME PLAY!?" Kyomi's face was very red now.

"Actually, I heard it from Tori. He said you were playing beautifully even if it sounded a little unpolished." Shigure stopped his teasing for a minute. "You know that's high praise coming from him."

"I know. I haven't played for nearly six years. It was beyond rough." Kyomi was still embarrassed, but slightly pacified by the classical music aficionado's words. Hatori was terrible at playing music, but he had grown up around it, so he knew good music when he heard it. "Anyway, you home for dinner tonight? I'm starved and I don't feel like cooking." She sheepishly admitted, especially after yelling at him.

"We are! Tohru's cooking already smells heavenly! Come over now and I'll let her know you are on your way." Shigure's voice lost its teasing and he said seriously, "I'm glad you seem to be doing well today. I was actually worried, you know."

Kyomi felt a few tears prick her eyes again but refused to let them fall after all the crying she had already done that day. "Thanks Shi." She said using her childhood nickname. "I'll be over in just a few minutes. It's just me too. Mine and Aya have Luc for the night."

"Oh! Then you must spend the night! Pack a bag! You'll sleep in Tohru's room. You will be such fast friends I know it. See you soon!"

Kyomi didn't even get a chance to protest before the puppy hung up the phone. She sighed and resigned herself to the inevitable. Then she got an evil grin on her face. "My neighbor who watches Lucy is out of town… I guess I'll just have to bring her with me… The puppy gets to play with a puppy." She laughed and laughed as she packed a few things she would need for the night before leaving the house with Lucy still giggling evilly.

Bonus points if you can figure out what movie she watched. Hint, the piano pieces she played were from this movie and I think I've mentioned it before. ALSO, if you can guess the boy band song her husband sang to her LOL. Hint, its from the last ten years. I'm old, but not quite old enough that I listened to NSYNC in high school or anything haha:)