AN: Life has been a bit hectic for me since my bosses kicked me off to the land of the rising sun for a year; spent my first few months adapting, the last two months traveling, and thought it's bout time that I update, since it's summer and all here, I thought it would be fitting to post Hanabi :)
I hope to write more now that I'm here, (and since I seem to have more time here than back home) hopefully drawing from my experiences here (just went for the Gion Matsuri recently and am planning to go for a fireworks festival soon).
Anyway have a good summer everyone! While I try not to melt in the heat here and enjoy the sounds of the cicadas.
By the way, totally random, but I would like to give credit to NotHardlyCharlotte for little Naru's choice of colour for his yukata, read her fics and you will know why! :)
I've honestly been getting a bit influenced by some of the GH fics that I've been reading on ff, and I hope the authors of those fics don't mind if my GH characters take on some of the temperaments of their GH characters. I will of course try to give credit where it's due, but as I said I've been reading so much sometimes I don't know where I adopted a particular temperament from lol.
"Seems like there is a firework festival tomorrow evening, should we bring the kids?" said a female voice belonging to an attractive woman, who seemed to be in her early to mid thirties, with braided dark hair that reached over her waist and gentle dark eyes, a magazine spread out on her lap, as she sat on the veranda of the house enjoying a cup of tea.
"Hmm~ I think that might be a good idea, I don't think Mai chan has been to a summer festival before yet" answers a different female voice belonging to a pretty woman who was perhaps also in her early to mid thirties, with soft brown eyes, her long brunette hair, though not as long as the first woman was tied neatly into a pony tail; looked over from beside the first woman to catch a glimpse of the article in the magazine, a cup of tea in her hand.
"Ne, should we dress the kids up? I bet Mai chan will look totally adorable in a yukata!" exclaims the first female voice excitedly with a soft clap of her hands.
"Mou~ Sakura san… actually… that's a good idea! I bet the boys will look very good in a yukata too" giggles the second female voice.
"Haha, Tomoe san, I know they will, they are after all mine" giggles Sakura as Tomoe gives her a friendly smack on her arm, both women breaking out into soft laughter as their eyes met.
The sound of drums, accompanied by a flute could be heard a short distance away as five adults walked with three children in the direction of the festival.
Everyone was dressed up in the traditional yukata and seemed excited. Most notably a little girl of about five years of age, dressed in a light pink yukata with Sakura prints and a matching Sakura flower clip in her brown hair that had been neatly tied into a bun on her head. Her big brown eyes twinkling with excitement.
"Now then Mai chan, remember what mama said, no wandering around and getting lost, there are a lot of people at the temple" warns Tomoe in a stern voice.
"Hai~" answers little Mai.
"Don't worry, ba chan I'm sure that my brother will take very good care of her," answers a little boy with dark hair and blue eyes, who looked to be about six years of age, dressed in a blue yukata with little gold fishes printed on it.
"Jin!" said a voice similar to Jin in a stern tone, a scowl on the face of the voice's owner, which was an exact mirror image of Jin. The mirror image however, was wearing a green yukata with white dragonflies on it.
"What? It's true, you always manage to find her, you practically never let her out of your sight!" Jin teases with an air of innocence and a twinkle in his eyes as his mirror image blushes, apparently unable to refute such claims from his twin.
"Hehe, then Kazuya chan, please help Tomoe san take care of Mai chan, ok?" said a smiling Sakura as she crouches down in front of the blushing Kazuya.
"Hai, okaa chan" replies Kazuya softly as he nods his head. The adults giggle softly.
"Aww, he is so cute," says the elderly woman in the group, she looked to be in her mid to late sixties with her greying hair tied into a bun at the back of her head, clad in a plain dark green kimono, her dark green eyes looking at the children fondly.
"Obaa chan! Don't say 'cute'!" pouts Kazuya and blushed, as Mai takes his hand and points with her other to the nearing temple, the bright vibrant lights and sounds from the festival engaging their senses.
"Ne, ne, Kazuya chan look, the festival!" Mai's eyes were shining bright with excitement; the girl was practically bouncing on the balls of her feet as she tugged at Kazuya's hand to go ahead to the festival.
"Now, now, if anyone were to get separated, we are to meet back at this point here after the fireworks, understood?" says a male voice belonging to a man that looked to be in his mid to late thirties, with black hair and kind brown eyes.
"Hai~" everyone answered in unison.
"Jin kun, Kazuya kun" Sakura crouches down in front of her boys and passes them two small identical pouches. "Use this to get yourself and Mai chan some snacks, okay?" both boys nodded as they took their respective pouches.
"Ok, let's go everyone, and try not to get separated" Obaa chan says with a soft clap of her hands.
"Uwaa~, that's so cute," big brown eyes, were staring intently at a game stall, ignoring the hustle and bustle around her, totally absorbed at something in the stall that had caught the little girl's attention.
"Mai!" exclaims the boy in the green yukata. "Just right after oba chan says not to go wandering off, you do just that" he chides Mai as he nears her.
"But Kazuya chan will find Mai right? So there's no problem. See, Kazuya chan found Mai again," answers the little girl with a smile.
"That's not the point, what if I didn't manage to find you? There are a lot of people here you know, here take my hand and don't let go" Kazuya answers back with some slight irritation, taking Mai's hand he was about to walk off when he felt resistance.
"Mai?" he asks looking at her. "Jin is waiting over at the cotton candy store with ojii chan, come on, I thought you said you wanted some cotton candy earlier?"
Mai ignored Kazuya's remark and pointed back at the stall that had initially caught her interest.
"That's cute, Mai wants it," she says in soft voice.
Following her gaze and little finger, Kazuya sees Mai pointing at a little pink teddy bear.
"Can we buy it Kazuya chan?" Mai turns to the boy and asks in a tone that sounded almost like she was pleading. Kazuya sighs; he can't resist her whenever she uses that tone and her puppy eyes on him.
Turning his head again to the stall, "It's supposed to be a prize, we will have to play to win it… looks like it's throwing hoops; do you want to try? It's ¥100 for five hoops" Kazuya asks, looking back at Mai who was nodding her head.
Still holding her hand, Kazuya leads her up to the stall. "Oji san, five hoops please," passing the required money to the stall owner, Kazuya indicated to Mai to take the hoops.
"Try throwing them."
"Hai~" answers the little girl excitedly.
Mai was pouting, Kazuya was sighing. Mai had thrown all five hoops and not one was even near the mark. She looked like she was about to cry; it looks like she really, really wants that pink teddy bear; and Kazuya just couldn't fathom why. What was she going to use it for anyway? If it were a book he could understand, but a stuffed toy? He sighed again.
"Look, don't cry… we will try again... I will throw them this round, ok?" Kazuya says quickly, in an attempt to stop her tears. The little girl nodded, a smile starting to grace her little face, all traces of tears miraculously disappearing at his words.
Sighing, Kazuya paid for another five hoops and attempted to throw them. On the third throw, Kazuya was looking visibly irritated.
"Jeez, this is too difficult for little kids" he grumbles, when an idea seemed to come to him. Closing his eyes for a moment, he started to slowly control his breathing. Mai just watched him curiously.
"Erm, Kazuya chan" she said in almost a whisper, feeling like she shouldn't startle or break his concentration, an air of static electricity seemed to be surrounding Kazuya.
Kazuya didn't reply, but when he opened his eyes they seemed like there was a light blue glow around his pupils, narrowing his eyes slightly in concentration he breathed out as he threw the hoop.
Mai opened her mouth in surprise as the hoop's route seemed vastly different from the previous rounds. Her eyes widening as it followed the hoop, which sailed perfectly through the air and landed right on its mark: the pink teddy bear.
The static around Kazuya seemed to die down, and Mai practically jumped into Kazuya's arms hugging him and jumping at the same time "Kazuya chan did it, Kazuya chan did it" she laughed.
"There you go young man, congratulations, a prize for your little lady" said the stall owner with a smile, a balding middle-aged old man with a potbelly. Taking the bear from the man, Kazuya turned towards Mai putting the bear in her arms to stop her from holding him and jumping at the same time.
"Thank you, Kazuya Chan, Mai will take good care of Akai chan for the rest of her life" says an exhilarated Mai hugging the little pink teddy tightly in her arms, a huge smile on her face.
"Akai?" Kazuya asks with an eyebrow raised, as he takes Mai's hand and starts heading to the food stalls, presumably to meet with Jin. His eyes back to its normal colour.
Holding the bear out in front of her "cause it's red in colour" Mai replies, as Kazuya rolls his eyes.
"It's not red, idiot, it's pink."
"Pink?" answers Mai with a tilt of her head. "What's that?"
Kazuya sighs, "it's the colour of your yukata, and the bear, I thought they should have already taught you that in preschool?"
"Oh~ Mai understands! Pink!" she says loudly as Kazuya manoeuvres the crowd with Mai in tow, having spotted Jin at the Takoyaki stand.
"Then pink chan it is," declares Mai as she looks lovingly at her new toy.
Shaking his head as he continued towards his brother "you have terrible naming sense."
1. "Hanabi" basically 'fireworks' in japanese.
2. "Yukata" basically means bath robe, but is also used to refer to the summer kimonos that are usually worn for the summer festivals in Japan.
3. "Ne" no meaning, kind of slang, just basically a word to sort of mean "hey".
4. "Mou" no meaning, just basically a word to express oneself, like when embarrassed or frustrated.
5. "Hai" basically Japanese version of yes, but also used as an acknowledgement, that you heard what a person was telling you, or to indicate that you understand what was spoken to you. Also used in place of "okay".
6. "Kaa chan" or "Okaa chan" basically means "mum".
7. "Obaa chan" basically "grandma", though not necessarily blood related. Not to be confused with "oba san" which, has one "a" less and means "aunt" or "aunty", again, not necessarily blood related.
8. It's not uncommon for young children, especially little girls to refer to themselves in the third person, hence Mai's speech "the others always can't find Mai" etc. usually some of them grow out of it, while some may continue using it to a certain age, as it is deemed cute.
9. In Japan, 'cute' is generally used on girls, some guys will feel offended if you call them cute, as they prefer to be called 'cool'. Although little boys are okay with it, but Kazuya is just a tad too mature for his age, and prefers to be called 'cool' than 'cute' lol. He was basically telling Grandma "お婆ちゃん可愛い言うな！" (Obaa chan Kawaii iuna/Grandma don't say (I'm) cute!)
10. "Oji san" basically means uncle. Not necessarily related. Children are usually taught to refer to a grown man as 'uncle', e.g. like calling their father's friend 'uncle'. Although it would be considered rude to call a teenager 'uncle' so in that case the teenager is referred to as 'big brother' or 'onii san'. Not to be confused with "ojii san" which means grandfather.
11. "Takoyaki" basically ball shaped Japanese food/snack, usually found with a small piece of octopus inside of it.
12. "Akai" basically means "red" in Japanese.