Pairing: Ninomiya Kazunari x Ohno Satoshi
Rating: PG (ranges from G to NC-17 in the coming chapters)
Genre: Angst, Historical AU
Disclaimer: I do not own Arashi in any way
Summary: Ninomiya Kazunari was born into poverty with no value to his family name and was forced into prostitution until he met a certain man of nobility. A sequel to Hanami.
Nino woke up with heavy eyelids, wishing he had not have to ever wake up—or better, awake in a place away from here, or his old hut which seemed much more comfortable. He continued his usual routine, with spare clothes and a bucket, Nino was about to go down the river for a morning bath but his intention was halted by the sight of the man from yesterday sitting around in his house.
“Who are you?” the man asked in a rather annoyed tone. Nino just cocked his head to his side in wonder. That was supposed to be his line. That stranger was in his house. Suddenly, his sister came rushing to his side and immediately pulled him into an embrace. “Don’t you ever harm my baby brother!” she snarled angrily.
The man scratched his head, obviously irritated. “I’m done with trying to coax you since you’re never going to fall for my sweet words anyway.” He then moved closer to take a good look at Nino. “So this is the little boy your mother keeps yapping about non-stop. Something like this is an ‘impressive child’? You gotta be kidding me. You can find kids like him begging in every corner of Edo!” insulted the man with a big laugh.
Nino admitted that his first impression of his step father was nowhere near good. The man was almost like how his father used to be, except for the fact that this man was nowhere near good-looking as his father used to be—maybe not; or Nino was simply trying to look at things in a better light. Whatever it was, he had already started to hate the man who was bringing his family on the second stage of crumbling. Going through the agony of being left by his father was enough but to have another man causing ruckus was too much. Even a little boy as bright as himself could tell that the man was a mere pest.
“So why did Mum chose somebody like him?” Nino asked his sister as they were playing by the riverbed. She simply shrugged and pouted her lips. “I don’t know about the details but what I do know is that man means no good. Mum simply brought him home one night and told me that he’s our new stepfather. When I asked mum, she ignored my questions and scolded me instead. It reeks of suspicion” that wasn’t exactly the answer Nino wanted but it’s not like being persistent was going to get him anywhere.
Days passed into weeks and weeks turned into months. Nino still did not find the answer as to why Mum got together with another useless man who’d go out in the middle of the night for no reason—or perhaps, for some shady business. Nino kept the money he earned from his previous job so the man won’t misuse the earnings of his own tears and sweat. He wanted to return back to that hut and work for the nice old man again but his step father did not let him do as he pleased.
Nino had a small built and weak frame so he dared not go against somebody as grouchy-looking as his step father. His mother was still working hard plus with another mouth to feed, it proved to be more difficult to bear, which was another reason why Nino wondered why she was willing to take up another burden on her back. His sister too was working hard to gain money but as for him, the people there seemed to still remember the incident which he was blamed on with no solid proof. Nino was young but not stupid. He was bright and intelligent enough to know what the adults were trying to pull off.
His mother grew distant but she always promised them with words of motherly love which was the sole reason the siblings were able to keep up with their step father. Nino’s birthday was approaching soon but he knew that he should expect nothing since that was how it went on every year. He saw kids who looked so happy to receive gifts for their birthdays on his daily walk around the town and he yearned for such happiness. But he knew all too well that it was unattainable.
It was a day before his birthday and his sister was the only one who remembered it. That morning, she sat by his side with a wide smile. “Tell me Kazu-chan. What do you want for your birthday tomorrow? I can do anything for you except for things that requires money!” her happy laugh was more than enough for Nino actually. He took his sister’s offer as a joke but gave her a pretty serious answer. “I wish that our step father would be off dead” his sister looked surprised but she did not say anything in return.
Nino went to bed early that night while his sister disappeared somewhere since that late evening. He ought not to let it bother him much since his sister had been acting quite bizarre since his return—or if it was before, he wasn’t sure. He was about to doze off when a loud scream and bang on the wall came from the other side of his poorly built home. Knowing that it was exactly his sister’s scream made Nino worried, but he managed to build up the guts to check it out.
Hiding behind the wall, he could see his sister crying on the floor while his step father had a long stick in his hand. He was about to hit her with the said weapon but Nino jumped into the scene and it hit his back instead—with a loud sound to top that. The pain was horrendous and NINO felt nauseous from the awful throbbing on his back. His mother who watched from afar immediately came to his aid, so did his still-crying sister.
The grouchy man then walked over to Nino’s sister and tugged at her long hair roughly. He brought a knife to her neck and a wicked smile formed on his hideous face. “This was what your stupid sister did to me a few minutes ago, telling me I’m better off dead for the good sake of this family. Well fuck you and your family. I don’t give a shit about any of you here!” He then pressed the knife onto her skin and Nino can’t help but sob uncontrollably. The most surprising thing was that nothing came out from his mother’s mouth. Why did she not say anything at all? Why did she not defend her one and only daughter?
Knowing the futile attempt to let his mother make the first move, Nino did instead. “Stop!!” the little boy shouted from his lungs. The attempt in trying to use his highest pitch only increased the pain on his back.
“What now? The little boy’s trying to play hero?” laughed the man, cutting a bit of the poor girl’s skin. She was trembling as a leaf and Nino simply wanted to hit the man with whatever he could if he had the ability to but he knew better where that’d lead him. Using his brains, Nino decided to negotiate instead. “I’m willing to do anything. Anything you wish for! Just don’t harm my sister!”
The man released his sister and walked over to him, eyes staring into his like a hawk’s. “Anything?” the man repeated with a low voice. It sent chills down the little boy’s spine. “Yes. Anything!” Nino responded, inching away from the said man. The consequences of his own words were pushed to the very back of his mind. It didn’t matter as long as he could save his sister. She probably tried to kill the man due to his selfish request so no matter how he tried sugar-coating his words it was still his fault in the end.
The sickening man laughed hysterically then gripped his arm tightly. Nino winced in pain from both the grip and his still throbbing back but the man showed no sign of lessening the aching. “Well then my boy, I shall now teach you that a man bears full responsibility for all the words that comes out from his own mouth”
A/N: This is the most I can write for now >< I won't be having any physiotherapy session in the nearest time so it's taking quite a toll on my limbs :P
Anw, thank you for the feedbacks and the ones wishing for my health ^^ I suggest that some of you who haven't to read Hanami to do so...
Oh, and comments would be appreciated :)