Not Another One, Nor Two

Cold hearted, the twins lived in their own world, away from the other students. Middle school was purgatory. No one liked them—not that they gave them much reason to. The twins kept to themselves, which probably made them self-centered. They were identical. No one could tell them apart, no one ever would. They knew. They grew up knowing. These boys would, just to prove how others didn't and wouldn't care, would trick people. When a young girl gave one of the brothers a love letter, the brother would go to her in a secluded place and pretend to be the other twin. Then he would tell her that his brother, though really himself, liked another girl, and asked if he, posing as his brother, would suffice. When the girl said yes, as they all did, he would yell out to his brother that the girl would have him. That girl would then become flustered, knowing she was tricked. The twins saw this as fair punishment—the girl was willing to treat the twins as if they were interchangeable, like some Christmas gift they didn't care for.

So when, in their third year, a young girl sent them a love letter, they expected the same. The brother who received it this time, Hikaru, rolled his eyes and passed it to his twin, Kaoru. They shared a look, and glanced down at the empty courtyard where, in a few minutes, a young girl would be.

"Another one," Hikaru said, a disgusted look on his face, "that wouldn't care if it were you or me."

"They can't tell the difference, and they don't care," said Kaoru, a disgruntled look on his features.

The twins headed down when they saw the young girl waiting. Kaoru hid behind a statue near the fountain while Hikaru approached her. She had shaggy sandy-colored hair and silver eyes. Her bangs covered her left eye and reached her chin, but the rest of her hair reached past her shoulders. Before receiving the letter, the twins had never even heard of her—but it wasn't something out of the ordinary, as they didn't much care for the world outside of their own bubble or people besides themselves.

"Mitsume," Hikaru said, leaning on the pillar in front of her. The girl, Mitsume, looked up at him. Hikaru pulled out the dusty-blue letter, holding it up in front of him. "I received your letter."

"Did you, now?" Mitsume replied quietly, still holding eye contact. She wasn't afraid, oddly enough.

"Yes," he replied. "But I'm sorry to say that I'm Kaoru. You must've gotten the wrong desk by accident." The corner up his mouth pulled up slightly. "Unfortunately, Hikaru likes someone else. Do you think you would be able to settle for me, instead?"

Now he knew what she would say. "…Okay, sure." Then he'd call out to Kaoru and let him know. The girl would start crying, and she'll have learned her lesson.


Hikaru opened his mouth and turned his head a fraction to the side before his mind registered what she had said. For the first time, someone had said no. He glanced back to her, eyes wide. "What?" he spat, almost angry and confused and relieved at the same time.

Now she seemed angry, her eyes welling up as she glared at him. "I said, no. Everyone's their own person, and no two people are exactly the same or interchangeable—not even twins. But you wouldn't care, would you? Yes, you know that. But you expect everyone else to be exactly the same, saying the same things! You pull the same stunt, Hikaru!"

She had said his name. She knew he was himself. This gave him a sense of bewilderment, but then he had to think that she knew it was him because of the fact that they'd done this before and other girls could've told her.

"Mitsume…" Before he could say anything else, she stormed off. From that day on, the twins didn't repeat that stunt. Kaoru, who had heard everything, felt bad, and Hikaru felt much worse.

It was near the end of the school year that Hikaru and Kaoru Hitachiin learned that Mitsume was a twin. She had an identical twin sister named Risumi. Now Hikaru and Kaoru felt twice as bad. They'd never met other sets of identical twins before. In fact, they didn't even see Risumi once until the last day of school.

It was the last day, and students were saying their goodbyes, especially the third years. Hikaru and Kaoru were just sitting by the fountain when they passed. Hikaru had only barely caught sight of them, rushing by without paying notice to the male twins.


Both girls turned quickly. Hikaru and Kaoru saw them. They looked identical in every aspect, besides the hair and eyes. Each had their bangs brushed to a different side, much like what Hikaru and Kaoru did. But, unlike them, Mitsume and Risumi had different eye colors. Mitsume had silver eyes, but her sister had a light green. The boys stood up and approached them, standing four feet away. The girls stared them down, eyes narrowed and expressions bored.

"I'm sorry," Hikaru said, breaking the silence that only they were in. The rest of the school avoided that little bubble, passing by it but never near the edges.

"Sorry? You?" Mitsume said, the only change in expression her eyebrow being raised. "For what?"

"Doing all that," he replied.

"We were mean, and we're sorry," Kaoru added quietly.

"We know," the girls replied in unison. "We accept the apology, since it's the end of the year. Goodbye." Both of them turned on their heels and left. The Hitachiin twins frowned at each other, but said nothing as they watched them leave. They learned a lesson that day, Hikaru especially. The walls of ice they put up around their hearts were struck and, within time, would be worn down. They would learn to trust, to love.

They would, for it took another set of twins to teach these twins how very individual they, and everyone else, were.