A/N: yooooooo!

Disclaimer: Gakuen Alice belongs to Higuichi Tachibana-sensei!


Possession 11
Little Things

..oO0Oo..

If asked if she liked working in KuRo, disregarding the existence of Natsume Hyuuga, Sakura Mikan would've called it perfect. The company was pretty lenient with work since they work on projects earlier than usual—all thanks to the effective management of the CEO. She couldn't help but badmouth his trashy personality but based on her experience with different fashion houses in Europe, Natsume's work is definitely exceptional and praise-worthy. Not as if she's going to praise him upfront and risk inflating his oh-so big ego.

That day, Mikan's team started putting up the actual pieces from paper to clothing. It was definitely her favorite part— feeling the thin needle beneath her fingers as she sew, marveling at the type of cloth used, and adding intricate beading. It was never work for her. It has always been play. Ever since she was a child, she knew she ought to do this. And even when she almost gave up, Hotaru brought her back.

Time passed too quickly that Mikan never noticed. Or at least, ignored. At 10 pm she was still brimming with energy and could keep up for another five hours.

She cracked her knuckles and adjusted the piece of clothing hanging on the dummy mannequin. It was an emerald green dress that she's working on.

At that moment, she shuddered when she felt a chilly wind pass on her sweaty nape. Was it the air-con? Don't tell me… a ghost?

"Boo."

Mikan let out an ear-piercing scream, slamming the mannequin on whoever or whatever it was.

"That hurts! O-ow, ow!" Natsume Hyuuga quickly backed away to the door, giggling. "So much worth it." He declared.

Mikan gritted her teeth. "What's your problem? I thought I was gonna die! You!" she pulled a meter stick and ran towards him, "You! You! You! I'm going to kill you!" She swayed the stick around as she followed the evasive Natsume.

"Last time you said that, you almost died!" he recounted with a playful grin.

When she realized how much a mess she actually did, she pouted and ceased the chase. "What are you even doing here?"

"What are you doing here?" he raised an eyebrow. "Trying to show off your I-can-work-24-hours super power? Or are you actually homeless?"

"Ha? Me, homeless?" she walked back to the dress she was making while he set himself on a couch beside the glass wall overlooking the city. "To hell with you, asshole."

"No good. You're so manly, I doubt Ruka really wants to date you."

That hit another nerve. "Excuse me. Stop prying into people's love lives. More like you're a good-for-nothing that no one wants to take you seriously."

"Tch. Good-for-nothing? Let me remind you that you're inside my property. That, that, and that" he motioned for the tools she was using, "Those are all mine."

Mikan turned around and tried to calm herself. She was getting dragged into his childish pace.

"Oh? Oho! You're not saying anything? Woah, I won again!"

"So childish." She said under her breath.

"Did you just call me childish? Ruka's the childish one!"

"You can't drop the Ruka thing, can you?" Mikan continued with her sewing. "He's working so hard, you won't even be able to catch up."

"Oh tell me. Wasn't he too busy flirting with you?" he yawned.

She mentally hit herself. No. That was a lie I made. "Well, he just asked me for another date!" she bragged.

"Really? That's... interesting." He chuckled, "When?"

"T-tomorrow night." She diverted her gaze to her work.

"Man, you need to get your head checked." He stood and propped a chair closer to her table. Mikan eyed him nervously. "Last time I checked, Ruka was in France for a two-week convention" He smirked triumphantly. "L-i-a-r" he sang.

She turned red in embarrassment for the second time that day.

"Well, well. Relax, I was just joking! Or not." He shrugged. "What are you working on?" he eyed her bead-work and noted the precision of her stiches. I guess hiring her wasn't that bad.

She perked up to see him leaning closer to her work. "This," she smiled. "Is my baby!" A soft laugh escaped her lips, "This is one of the samples my team would be shoving on your face."

He glared at her. "Yeah. You're gonna shove your baby on my face. That just sounds so wrong, Sakura."

"Just shut up and go home." She tossed an asymmetrical extra cloth onto his face.

"You know your designs are weird… it's not like there's something new in it—

"If you're just going to insult me, shut up."

"Let me finish you flat-chested woman." He chirped, "but at the same time it's different. How do you do it? Making women rave over some generic clothing."

"Like some kind of a secrect?" she grinned. "Is there any? You just make clothes like you want to wear them. Oh, and dress to depress. I like that quote. Dress so that people who look at you get depressed about themselves."

"Hehhh. Interesting."

The night was very long. Mikan continued speaking about the kind of clothes she made in France, or the pieces she made as an undergraduate. She told them like a child recounting her first day in school to her parents.

Natsume never noticed the time. He listened to her stories as he watched her nimble fingers work their magic in turning scrap to masterpieces. Her voice was some kind of a lullaby but it never made him sleepy, instead, he wanted to hear more.

To him, the fashion world was a workplace. But to this woman, he realized, it was a playground. He noticed one special thing about her. She always smiled when working, and her eyes twinkled when she spoke of her rich fashion experiences. Fascinating.


..oO0Oo..

The phone rang for the hundredth time in Koko's unit. "Hello?"

"Hello? Natsume-sama? Is this Natsume-sama?" it was just another stalker fan that has obtained a wrong information. Well, it was part of Koko's job to ensure Natsume's comfort so he had put up with this kind of life.

He slammed the phone and went back to cooking his dinner.

Another ring made him burn himself over the stove. Damn. He took his time washing his finger and putting some toothpaste, expecting the caller to give up.

It did. But another call came in. Urgh. He stomped his way over the table and lifelessly picked it up, "One more ring and I am going to put you to jail for harassment."

"Hey, stinky bald." A warm and husky female voice spoke. "I won't come to work tomorrow."

"Who's this?" he wondered. Sumire? Eyyy. That woman was a megaphone in person.

"It's Shouda, you idiot!"

"What now? You got a cold? You finally realized the pointlessness of you getting work in KuRo? Thank the heavens!" he babbled.

"Do I sound like I'm joking right now." She snarled.

What was that? A sniff? "Hey, are you really sick?"

"Yeah."

"What sickness? Is it deadly? Is it contagious? Hey! You need medicine?"

"So noisy. Shut up, I'm not coming for a week! My dog's sick and I don't know what to do, okay?" she banged the phone.

Dog? Sick?

Koko never knew what drove his decision that night. Was it his animal loving sense? Or because he was so used to being Sumire's baby sitter that it bothered him that she was in a mess?

He dialed her back and spoke immediately without letting her say hello, "Hey, let me help you with that."


..oO0Oo..

The convenience store bell rang as a few customers clad in thick coats entered.

Misaki tossed the cheapest bandages she could find and then took a dozen of relief patches, two bottles of energy drinks, and a huge bottle of massage oil. Even though she kept denying her model-in-training colleagues that she was fine, she was definitely not.

Combining Nobara and her leeches' taunting, Serina's consistent scolding, and the pain of tripping every hour of training is starting to daunt on her. She never knew the fashion world was as worse as the news reporting career. There are people who want to step on you, and those who doesn't really care. At least at that time she had Nobara. Now she was totally alone in her suffering and it's already starting to break her spirit.

That day, she definitely got a sprain. Not wanting to trouble people, especially Serio-sensei, or her only friend, Tobita Yuu, she sneaked out and decided to at least buy some topical cream for her ankle.

The line at the counter was unexpectedly long. She peeked and saw the clerk panicking and opening drawers and boxes.

"I'm sorry sir, do you really not have a smaller bill. The manager already took the day's earnings." The young part-timer spoke to a guy wearing dark clothes and a dark blue beanie that covered his night blue messy hair.

Misaki impatiently tapped her foot as the line ceased to move.

"Hey! How much does he need? I'll pay for… it" she said, irritated.

She narrowed her eyes when she realized who it was. Her nightmare. Andou Tsubasa with two coffee cans on hand.

..oO0Oo..


A/N: I h-have r-rr-readers? *turns into a pool of tears* Thank you for the new subscribers and reviews!