Chapter 7

Sam sat with Chiemi and Akari at Honey and Mori's spot in the room. But it wasn't one of the very cheerful and giggly visits, which were the norm when visiting the two at the Host Club; Chiemi had announced just one week earlier that her parents had decided that Chiemi would continue her studies abroad in England, where her father's companies gain the most profit from, so it was expected of her to be knowledgeable of the area if she were to one day take over the business. This was to be her last visit to Ouran and the Host Club. The news was sudden to hear from her. Since Sam had met Chiemi and Akari, she had come to grow close to the opposites.

Chiemi's quiet and rational attitude towards everything – life, arguments, people – carefully balanced out Akari's bubbly and childish personality. It made people of Ouran wonder how the two ever got along so well.

It was getting close to the time when Chiemi would have to leave. While Honey tearfully told Chiemi how terrible it was that she had to leave, Chiemi and Sam glanced over at Akari. Akari was watching the scene with a sad smile. She didn't say anything, just watched. Sam didn't have to say anything to Chiemi to know that they were thinking the same thing.

The time came when Chiemi stood from her seat and declared that it was time to go. Sam stood up too, and the girls hugged each other in farewell, during which, Chiemi whispered softly to Sam, "Watch over her." Sam knew whom she meant, so she only nodded in reply when they released each other.

"I-I'll walk you to the car!" Akari stuttered.

They walked out together, and Chiemi stopped to give everyone one last wave goodbye.

Honey was waving frantically and jumping up and down to make sure Chiemi saw him. "Goodbye, Chi-chan!" he cried.

When Chiemi and Akari were gone, Sam sat back down with Honey and Mori, whom wore solemn faces.

"Poor Kari-chan… She doesn't have a lot of friends besides Chi-chan and you," Honey said to Sam.

"Yes," Kyoya agreed from his spot in front of his laptop. "Before you arrived, the only other student – excluding Honey-sempai and Mori-sempai – that she cared to converse with in school regularly was Ms. Momotani."

Sam looked at the door Akari exited from and then hung her head, ashamed that she didn't realize this before, especially after how close the two were starting to become. How could I have missed that?

"It's so gloomy over here," Hikaru said as he and Kaoru over. All of their customers were just leaving, seeing as it was starting to get late, and they decided to join in on the conversation after over-hearing.

"Why don't you just do something to cheer Ms. Kanagawa up once she gets back here?" Kaoru suggested.

"Like what?" Sam asked.

The twins shrugged. "How should we know?" they said.

Sam sighed. Some help they are… She scanned the room for anything that could possibly take Akari's mind off of Chiemi. She looked and looked until she noticed Tamaki's piano in the far corner of the room. She quickly recalled a time when Akari once mentioned that she loved the sound of a piano. "Where is Tamaki-sempai?"

"Tamaki is seeing the last of his customers," Kyoya said, pointing his finger towards the door, where a few blushing girls were getting the back of their hands kissed by the princely second-year. "I take it that you want him to play the piano for Ms. Kanagawa," Kyoya said as he followed Sam's gaze.

"Unless anyone else knows how to play it," Sam answered.

Once Tamaki finished saying goodbye to the blushing girl, he made his way to everyone. He was curious as to what they were talking about, and after he caught them staring straight at him, he became even more interested.

Abruptly, the twins each grabbed one of Tamaki's arms and dragged him toward the corner of the room. "Boss, come play piano!" they said as they dragged him against his will.

Tamaki at first refused them, kicking and screaming to get out of their hold, but after Sam explained the situation, he completely turned his character around. He was more than happy to be of assistance to one of the Host Club's "princesses".

Tamaki played intros to a few melodies to get Sam's opinion on which Akari would like the best. Sam wasn't sure which would be best, so she simply chose the most playful sounding one in hopes that it would cheer her up. Sam smiled, listening to the piece she chose for Tamaki to play. "You're really good, Tamaki-sempai. I wish I was at least half as good as you," Sam complimented.

Tamaki raised his brows and smiled as he continued to play. "Oh, so you play piano too?" he inquired.

"Well, no. I play guitar, not that learning how to play piano wouldn't be fun too."

"We didn't know you play guitar," Hikaru said, he and Kaoru both suddenly appearing behind where she sat in front of the piano.

"My dad taught me a few years back. I thought you two would've assumed it since there is an acoustic guitar sitting plain as day in my living room," Sam said.

The twins both looked at each other and shrugged. "Guess we missed it," Kaoru said.

Tamaki had gasped and was smiling brightly. He looked as if he wanted to hug Sam, but that would have stopped the music she requested him to play. "Samantha, you must play something here next time and show us your talent!"

"Yeah, we wanna hear you play!" Honey said excitedly. Mori simply nodded.

Sam was reluctant to accept. She had never been asked to play with an audience. The only other audience she ever had was her father and occasionally her mother when she was feeling down. Any other time she played was for herself. She liked to play for herself; it relaxed her and distracted her from any problems she might have at the time. "I don't know, guys," she said. "Besides, I'm not that great at it. I've never even played in front of other people…"

"You know," Kyoya started with a sly smirk, "our customers would love to see a live performance of a guitarist. This could maybe get you some cash on the side as well, like a part-time job."

"The girls would love it," Hikaru agreed.

"And even if you did bad, they would still like it because it's something new to them," Kaoru added.

Sam bit her lip in consideration. I guess I don't have much to lose… "Well, I guess I could next time."

Then, everyone heard the doors close. It was Akari, who was wiping her cheek. Her eyes were puffy from crying, and when she saw everyone's eyes now on her, she began to feel a little self-conscious. She nervously chuckled. "Sorry, am I interrupting something?"

This was when the twins sprang up from where they were, and each on looped an arm in hers and escorted her to the piano. "No way!" they said together.

"In fact, we've been waiting for you," Hikaru said with a cheeky grin.

Akari flushed, making her cheeks redder than they already were. "Y-You have?"

"Yeah, we want you to listen to the piano with us," Kaoru said.

Akari looked ahead and burst into a bright smile when she stopped to listen to the music. "It's so beautiful, Tamaki-sempai!"

Tamaki gave a warm smile to her as he continued to play. "Thank you, princess. Samantha picked out the tune."

Akari smiled at Sam but then suddenly gasped when she remembered something. "Oh, Samantha, I almost forgot to tell you! My parents and I would like to know if you'd like to have dinner at our place tomorrow night," she said excitedly.

"Your parents? But I've never met them before," Sam said, puzzled as to why her parents would be interested in her. "Why would they want to invite me over?"

"Well, I told them a little about you the other day, and when I mentioned that you're from America, they said they wanted to meet you!" Akari explained. "So, would you like to come?"

Despite her doubts about the parents' interest in her, she accepted the invitation anyways since it was obvious that Akari was genuinely excited about it. And after Tamaki's playing was finished, along with Akari, Sam gathered her stuff to prepare for going home. She glanced back at the exit and saw the twins in front of it, along with Haruhi. She couldn't tell what they were talking about, but she could see that Kaoru was saying something, occasionally looking in her direction, to which Hikaru and Haruhi shrugged their shoulders.

"What are you looking at?" Akari asked Sam curiously.

Sam hadn't realized that her entire head was turned until she snapped her head back to look down at her bag. "Nothing," she said, suddenly too embarrassed to look at anything but her school bag, though she didn't know why she should feel embarrassed in the first place.

Akari blinked at her. She then looked to find what Sam was looking at to make her so uncharacteristically timid. She saw the twins and Haruhi, and when she saw one of the twins make their way to them, she turned back around quickly and giggled.

"Hey, Sam!"

Sam shook her embarrassment away and looked to see Kaoru coming to her. "Hey, Kaoru. What's up?"

Kaoru and Akari raised their eyebrows, slightly stunned. She said Kaoru… How could she possibly know?

Kaoru, being momentarily thrown off his course, spoke somewhat shakily. "Do you want a ride home?" he asked. "We were gonna give Haruhi a ride home, and your place is on the way anyways, so you want to come?"

Akari jumped in. "How nice of you, Kaoru! Samantha was just talking about how she wished someone would offer her a ride!"

Sam narrowed her eyes at Akari, who grinned back at her. "Thank you, Kaoru. I'd love a ride. Just let me get my stuff," she said.

When Kaoru left to return to Hikaru and Haruhi, Sam gave Akari a death glare. "What the heck was that?"

Akari giggled. "I don't know what you're talking about."

Sam groaned and really wanted to know what she was thinking, but she didn't want to keep her ride waiting. So, she went on and joined the twins and Haruhi and followed them into the Hitachiin's limo.


** Sorry for the shortness, especially after the long absence! I'll try update soon. :) **