Author: Misspointless PM
Status: Currently REWRITING Being a wealthy heiress wanting nothing to do with her family's clan and by secretly attending her family's school to sabotage it, Andy deals with an ex-boyfriend, a war with Mr. Popularity, and befriending a bad boy.Rated: Fiction T - English - Romance/Humor - Chapters: 13 - Words: 100,880 - Reviews: 27 - Favs: 13 - Follows: 14 - Updated: 06-26-11 - Published: 05-15-11 - id: 2914911
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
MORE RECENT A/N: So Sorry. I really want to start working on this but college can really suck away all your free time. Please, don't hate. I'd make the 14th chapter relatively longer. THANK YOU!
RECENT A/N: CHAPTER 14 will OFFICIALLY BE DELAYED. I truly apologize for this clear evidence of incompetence on my part. I'm trying to focus on my academics for now as I also try to balance it with my athletic career (the season's about to open this year).
Thanks for reading! Please don't think that I'm dropping this story. I am most certainly not going to leave you all hanging.
I intend to finish this story and all I'm asking is your patience and understanding. Thanks!
A/N: Read, Enjoy, and REVIEW!
I appreciate those who reviewed the last chapter. I'm gonna keep begging for more reviews since they're one of the reasons I remain inspired to finish this story.
TOP HAT POLL about Andy's happily ever after can be found at the TOP of my PROFILE page. Please feel free to choose the man of your choice for Andy Nakamura.
To those who have been accessing misspointless dot tumblr dot com, please take note that I've made some changes to a few things. Kindly disregard the not-yet appearing characters introduced in the blog.
Top Hat has finally reached 1,000 hits! Celebration! Celebration!
I wish more and more people would take the time to REVIEW the story. I really appreciate those readers who do. If I actually reach 30 reviews, I'll post the next chapter by FRIDAY
Here ye... Here ye... Chapter 13! :P
Thank you all!
Chapter 13: Secrets Never Stay Secret
"Where are we going?"
After a long drive in silence, Andy finally managed to open her mouth and speak up. She looked out side the tinted window of Raiden's car and noticed they were driving by a residential area and not the main city anymore. She turned to Raiden waiting for a response but his eyes were focused on the road and his hands tightly gripped the stirring wheel of the car. Knowing that he was literally ignoring her, she just rolled her eyes and leaned back on her seat.
As silence continued to deafen their ears, Andy had started to drift into a deep train of thought about what had just happened. Raiden found out her secret. It couldn't get anymore plainer than that. She was not the poor commoner on a scholarship that she pretended to be. Out of all the possibilities of being found out, she did not expect that a coincidental blind date with Raiden would throw away everything she worked so hard for in just a moment. If Raiden would decide on telling the entire school that she had been lying to their faces all along, Andy hadn't taken in consideration of the possible outcomes.
Would the students continue to hate her? Perhaps they would even hate her even more for being a liar. There also lies the possibility that she would become the new object of worship since people would find out that she was the granddaughter of the leader of the most respectable clan in the country. Andy couldn't even imagine the looks on the faces of people like Reiko and Arashi if they find out that they've been making an enemy out of the owner of the school they're studying in. Andy guessed that she'd only find pleasure in revealing her identity when she would see the looks of Arashi and Reiko's faces.
However, to Andy, there was no pleasure that she would ever get from betraying her friends. Andy feared that if they realize that she was not who she claimed to be, all the friendships she had made and treasured along her little escapade would go down the drain. Would they see her as a liar and a traitor? Would they even consider the idea of being friends with her after they find out that she had been conning them ever since the first day that they met? Would they even speak to her? Andy shook her head in trying to get those thoughts away from her mind.
It was never part of Andy's plan to find good friends in Nakamura High. She only thought of one objective – bring down her grandfather's reputation. But finding people like Zuki, Yuki, and Kei who helped her find her place in the Nakamura system was completely coincidental and she thought was a true blessing. There were times when she considered telling them everything about herself but she was afraid that if they know, they'd stay away from her. She's exactly the type they have hated over the years in school – a rich, spoiled, and egotistical brat. She got her way through almost everything. She had everything.
For some reason, Andy felt like she had been shivering the whole time as she let her mind wander about her friends. She assumed that Raiden's sports car had its air-conditioner set into a colder temperature. She had always been sensitive to the cold since she grew up on a tropical country.
She leaned forward and tried to meddle with the car's dashboard and change the temperature to a warmer one. Raiden turned to her with a sharp look, wondering what she was doing.
"It's too cold," Andy replied, leaning back to her seat. Raiden still hadn't said a word to her.
Andy was turning from freaked out to very anxious and downright nervous along the course of the drive. Wanting to at least break the silence, Andy leaned forward to the dashboard and turned on the radio. A Japanese pop song erupted in the air and although she wasn't much of a J-pop fan, she let it play on. She leaned back to her seat and shut her eyes. It felt good to hear music compared to a deafening silence.
However, her happiness was cut short when the radio was turned off by Raiden. Andy abruptly opened her eyes and turned the radio on again, leaning back and smiling to her self. The smile had faded when the music was turned off yet again by Raiden.
A bit infuriated, Andy made an attempt to turn on the radio again but Raiden grabbed her hand to stop her from doing so.
"You do that again, you'll regret it," Raiden warned. He let go of her hand and refocused his attention back to the road.
"Wow, at least, you're talking now," Andy said smugly, her arms folded.
"Don't tempt me, Lady Amaterasu," he emphasized her real Japanese name. "That is your real name, right?"
"Well, it is… sort of," Andy replied with hesitation. "Where are we going anyway?"
"If you stay quiet, we'll get there faster."
Andy hissed at him but stayed silent for the rest of the ride. For the past two months, she still didn't have any idea what kind of relationship she and Raiden actually shared. They were close enough not to be strangers but not close enough to be friends. It was not without effort on Andy's part, though. Despite her stubbornness to learn during their tutorial classes, she made constant effort to get to know him better. Thanks to the constant bickering of her best friend Gene, she actually got more and more curious about Raiden but it seemed like he had a tough exterior that no one can penetrate. Not even Akiko.
And how could Andy not be confused about their relationship status? One moment, Raiden would be really mean, cruel, and absolutely cold and indifferent towards her. Then, he would be gentle and kind to her on another. There's this constant barrier standing in the way of their possible friendship. If she gets too close, Raiden would find away to push her away so easily. Andy was having a hard time dealing with him because she hated the feeling of confusion and uncertainty. And now, he found out her most treasured secret. How could she possibly know if she could trust him enough if she never got the chance to even be close with him?
"We're here," Raiden spoke, pulling over the car. He killed the engine and stepped out of the car to walk to the other side. He opened Andy's car door and she slid out slowly.
Andy observed the location carefully and realized that they were parked at the gates of a Japanese cemetery.
"What are we doing at a cemetery?" she asked, curiosity getting the best of her.
"Come on, let's go," Raiden ordered her as he walked inside. Andy raised her eyebrows as she stood with her arms folded. Realizing she wasn't following, Raiden turned back and stared her down. Frustrated, he walked back towards her and grabbed her by the arm to drag her along with him.
Andy squealed at being dragged by Raiden. She told him, "Will you stop for a second and let me go?"
"No," he replied, still tightly gripping on her arm. "If I do that, you'll just run away."
"Can you blame me? You're dragging me inside a cemetery," Andy retorted. "Who knows what you plan to do! You might have been plotting to murder me for all I know."
"Trust me, I'm not going to murder you," Raiden answered back as he kept on walking.
"Why should I?" Andy asked with a condescending tone.
"Because I know your secret," Raiden replied with a cold gaze.
"Is that some sort of threat?" Andy yelled back at him. Raiden merely shrugged his shoulders that left Andy into a more confused state. She didn't even put up a fight anymore when Raiden started pulling her by the hand as they went to the inner part of the cemetery.
After a few minutes of walking, Raiden had stopped and let go of his grip on Andy's hand. Andy nursed her hand because it was a little pained from the tight grip of Raiden. She glared at Raiden but noticed that his attention wasn't focused on her anymore. He was facing a tombstone that looked just like a shrine with someone's name written on it in kanji characters. She took a few steps forward to take a good look and saw that the words read, "Akihiro Sato." Andy thought the name sounded very familiar to her but when she turned to Raiden, his eyes were closed. She assumed he was offering some sort of prayer.
Who was Akihiro Sato? Andy was certain she had heard the name a few times. She was never good with name recalls. It was a failing she had that was difficult to change. Knowing that she could not possibly figure out for herself, she just shut her eyes and offered a prayer to tombstone of the stranger.
Raiden had opened his eyes and saw that Andy was offering a Catholic prayer. Once she was done, she did the Sign of the Cross and turned to him.
"Akihiro Sato?" she said in an inquisitive tone. "Is she related to our Akiko?"
Raiden nodded and answered, "Yes. He's her older brother."
Suddenly, Andy remembered the times she would ask Akiko about her brother. It always resulted with Akiko only saying very few things about him with obvious sadness hinted on her voice. Then, at night, she would always end up crying.
"Where's your brother now?"
Andy heard Akiko choke. She knew she had done something wrong. It was only
confirmed further when she heard her answer, "He died a few years back."
"That's terrible," Andy reacted. She wasn't going to say she was sorry for his death because she didn't know the man. She wasn't going to pretend.
Akiko shook her head to disagree. "It's okay. I really don't remember him that
much anymore. I'm just hoping he's in a better place now."
"I'm sure he is," Andy assured her. "I'm sorry I brought it up."
"I'm okay, really."
Akiko was never really okay with her brother's death as she claimed she was. Andy was sure of that. She was curious to know about it but she respected her friend's privacy and her pain. She would only ask a few casual questions about him but never really digging deep into the real story of her brother's death. Losing someone would never be easy. At some level, she was experiencing the same thing with her grandmother's inevitable death.
Without really thinking before speaking, Andy blurted out a query, "How did he die?"
Raiden looked taken aback at Andy's blunt phrasing of her question. But Andy had a softened expression on her face as she touched Akihiro's tombstone and smiled weakly.
"He was killed," Raiden replied, averting his gaze when Andy looked back at him with a surprised look.
Andy didn't bother to ask why it happened because she could already see a gloomed expression written all over Raiden's face. She was not the kind to deliberately inflict more emotional and psychological pain to someone who lost a good friend by asking unnecessary questions. She wouldn't want anyone doing the same thing to her. Besides, even if she asked, he probably would only refuse to answer and snap at her.
"Okay," Andy said, not knowing what else to say. To alleviate the somber vibe surrounding them she asked, "So why have you brought me here?"
Raiden turned to her, looking serious. He replied, "To talk."
"We could talk anywhere else, you know," Andy replied in an as-a-matter-of-factly manner.
"I'm putting you in confession," he replied. "You're in a sacred ground so you're going to answer all my questions with complete honesty."
"What makes you think I won't lie?"
Raiden walked closer to the tombstone and laid his right hand on it. He looked back at Andy before replying, "Because Akihiro's spirit will bear witness to this confession. Do you really want to lie in front of your friend's deceased brother?"
"I see your point," Andy said, defeated. All of a sudden she really felt like she was compelled to an honest confession. Thinking of Akiko and Akihiro, how could she possibly think about lying before speaking?
"So, what now?" Andy asked, sighing.
"So you're a liar," Raiden had said it so bluntly that it pierced through Andy's ears and made her heart skip a beat.
Regaining her composure, she answered, "Yes, I am. So is everybody else. We all lie, Raiden."
"Not to friends," Raiden retorted. "Good people do not lie to their friends."
Andy's eyes widened in shock and she felt a pang of pain inside her stomach. Smiling bitterly, she replied, "Well, I guess that makes me look like a bad person to you, huh?"
"At this point, I honestly don't know," Raiden replied, looking up the sky. "I always thought you were annoying but your heart always seemed to be in the right place. But now, I don't know if that's true anymore."
"Just because I lie to my friends doesn't mean that I don't care about them," Andy retorted defensively. "Yes, I'm not the Andy Nakamura I claimed to be. I'm Amaterasu Nakamura, the only granddaughter of Master Takeru Nakamura of the highly respected Nakamura Clan. On the other hand, I'm also Andrea Ysabel Nakamura Ruiz, the sole heiress to the Ruiz Telecommunications Empire. I know I'm beautiful. I'm smarter than most people I know. And, I'm filthy rich. I look, dress, and act like the heiress that I am. Basically, I'm everything anyone could possibly hope to be."
"Then, I became Andy Nakamura, the poor commoner from the Philippines. I got inside Nakamura High because I have the brains to qualify for a scholarship. I still look pretty but all the grandeur and glamour had been shed away to look like a plain Jane. I'm living three separate lives, Raiden. But it doesn't mean that I'm less of Andy than I am of Amaterasu and Andrea. They're all a part of me. They're the real me. I am who I am and no one, not even you, could change that."
"It doesn't change the fact that you've been lying to everyone," Raiden spoke. "It still begs the question why? Why would you lie to Maruyama, to the Ando twins, to Akiko, to me?"
"Why are you so keen on finding the reason why?" Andy said, irritated.
"Because I hate liars!" Raiden almost yelled but the sharpness of his voice still cut Andy deeper than he intended. "And I don't want a reason to hate you, Andy."
"You already hate me," Andy said spitefully. "So what if you hate me a little bit more? Should I be bothered? Should I care? You obviously made your judgment on me so why should I defend myself?"
"Don't turn this around on me," Raiden warned her, his hands clenched into fists. "You know I don't hate you. Not yet. I'm trying not to, Andy. I really am."
"You keep saying you don't hate me but your actions say otherwise," Andy said as she smiled bitterly. "Do you know how pathetic you make feel? Do you know how so damn confusing you are? Do you know how hard it is for me to face you everyday knowing that you will never treat me as well as you treat Akiko? And would you even care if I told you that I might actually –"
"Stop!" Raiden raised his right hand to stop Andy from her ranting. "I am not the one on trial here, you are. I'm not the one who's lying to her friends. I'm not the one who got caught red-handed. I'm not the one has to explain. I'm the one who demands an explanation."
Andy turned away from him. She was hyperventilating and was trying her best not to shed a single tear. She had almost told him something totally insane. She didn't even know she was about to say it. It was a good thing Raiden stopped her or she would have regretted her words.
"You want an explanation? Fine! I'll give you one," Andy retorted, throwing both her hands in the air. She turned back to him and added, "Grab a seat! I'll tell you all you want to damn know about it!"
"Andy, will you calm –"
"No, I will not, Raiden," Andy cut him off. "If I'm going to explain myself, I'm going to do it in however hell I want to."
"I did not come to Nakamura High to make friends. I came there to know the dirty little secrets of that pathetic excuse of a school and expose them. If I manage to do that, I'll taint my grandfather's most-valued reputation and I'll finally get the justice my real family deserves. There's not such thing as a perfect family, Raiden, and my family is just as messed up as everyone else's."
Andy paused and waited for Raiden to say something. He remained silent so she went on.
"Then, I met Akiko… the kind and sweet Akiko. I've never met someone so innocent and saw only the good in people. I knew I had to protect her. Zuki and Yuki have been nothing but kind and good to me. They sided with me when everyone else wanted to rip me apart. And as much as I am annoyed at Kei's antics, I value him because he keeps me sane. Then there's you..." Andy tried to say something about him but decided against it.
"I didn't plan any of this to happen. I didn't mean to meet good people who have now become an important part of me. It doesn't change the fact, however, that I came here for one reason – vengeance. And I intend to accomplish that reason whether you're against it or not."
"So you're a liar and a traitor?" Raiden finally managed to muster after a long period of silence. "You lie to your friends and betray your grandfather."
"Call me whatever you like, Raiden," Andy hissed at him. "It's not like you understand. I'm a bastard grandchild. You do not know what it's like to be rejected by your own family. You live with parents who give you everything – money, security, and a million dollar worth of a sports car and yet you waste it all away by ditching school, getting into fights, and scaring everyone away."
"How dare you speak to me like you know everything about me!" he snapped at her. Andy blinked a few times at Raiden's infuriated expression. He rarely looked so agonizingly angry. He never looked at her that way. "You don't know the first thing about who I really am!"
Raiden turned his back from her and started to walk away from her. For a while, Andy stood there completely flabbergasted. When she realized that Raiden was almost out of her visual range, she turned to Akihiro's tombstone and asked, "I hurt his feelings, didn't I?"
Sighing, she bade her farewell before running after Raiden. "Nice to meet you, Akihiro. Your sister grew up to be a wonderful woman. You should be proud."
As she jogged towards a striding Raiden, she kept calling his name but he refused to respond. They were close to the gates when Andy had finally managed to catch up with him and grabbed his arm. She forced her to face him and she was temporarily taken aback by his fiery glare.
"Raiden…" Andy tried to say something, anything that would take away his glare that was directed at him. No words came out. She just stammered and stared.
Raiden ran his fingers through his hair and heaved a heavy sigh. He stared deeply into Andy's eyes and coldly replied, "You know what? Get over yourself. You're not that freaking special. Don't act like the world is out to get you. You're not the only one who's ever experienced rejection in her life."
He pulled his arm away and walked towards the sports car. He opened the car door and was about to get in. Andy rushed towards him, stopping him from doing so.
"Listen," Andy started, shutting the car door. "I don't expect you to understand me. I don't expect you to take my side. And I don't expect you to be my friend."
Raiden tried to ignore her and reopen the car door but she kept pushing it closed with her left hand. She let out an exasperated sigh and looked him in the eye.
"All I'm asking is that please – just get off my case. Don't interfere with my personal issues. Turn a blind eye like you always have. Just don't say anything, okay?"
"So you want me to just shut up and pretend that I don't know you're lying to your so-called friends?" Raiden said in dark humor. His cold gaze was back again. It was like the fiery anger was never there a moment ago.
"Yes," she said in a sad tone. "I need your silence. I'm already putting my friendships in jeopardy for my revenge. I cannot allow you making it all worth for nothing just because you want to rat me out. This isn't about you. It's about me."
"You're really something," Raiden said as he laughed darkly, no humor intended. "I've never met anyone else as stubbornly selfish and conceited other than Arashi."
Andy glared at him. She muttered under her breath, "Do not compare me with that orange-horned demon. We're different."
"Whatever," Raiden said, rolling his eyes. Raiden tried to reopen the car but this time Andy didn't stop him from doing so. Once the door was wide open, he looked back to Andy and told her, "Get in. I'll take you home now."
Sighing frustratingly, Andy went to the other side of the car and opened the door. She glided in and sat uncomfortably beside Raiden. She had her arms folded and looked very angry.
"Where do you live?" Raiden asked as he started the car.
"Matsumoto Family Village," Andy replied, refusing to look at Raiden. "I live in Shin Matsumoto's house. And just so you know, he's my friend and he knows everything."
"I see you already have someone doing your bidding," Raiden told her casually. He started to drive and Andy shot him an offended expression.
"I always knew there was something more between the two of you," he continued on as he kept his eyes on the road. "I see how he looks at you. It's far beyond than a scholar and guarantor relationship."
Andy wondered how Raiden had been so observant of her and of anything else around her. He even saw things that not even her new friends manage to take notice of. Was she really easily seen through by Raiden's piercing cold and brown eyes? Was she that predictable?
"I see how you look at him, too," he added. He turned to Andy for a second before looking back to the road. "You love him."
"That has nothing to do with you," Andy spat back to him. "My friendship with Shin is not the same as your old friendship with Arashi."
"You don't know any truth about my friendship with Arashi," he answered.
Andy smirked and snorted. She retorted, "Neither do you about my friendship with Shin. Like you said, don't act like you know everything about me. My relationship with Shin doesn't concern you."
"You're right," he said pausing for a moment before continuing. "It doesn't concern me at all." In his mind he added, "But it doesn't mean that it doesn't bother me."
After those heated exchange of words, the entire trip had been spent in complete silence. They would only converse with each other when Raiden asked direction on where he should go and what streets to turn to. Other than that, it seemed that they ran out of anything to say to each other. The anger and fury of both sides have soon dissipated. They no longer felt like arguing with each other. It just felt right for them to be quiet and think over everything that had happened and been said.
An hour or so had passed until they had finally arrived at the gates of Shin Matsumoto's mansion. Raiden had pulled over right in front of the black-painted steel gates.
"We're here," Raiden spoke first. He didn't bother to turn off the engine. He was just waiting for Andy to make a move to alight from the car. However, Andy remained seated, merely staring at the window of his car.
"You're not going to tell anyone, right?" She asked in a soft voice. Slowly, she turned her head to him and for the first time, Raiden saw Andy with pleading eyes. She didn't have to say much for him to feel the gravity of what she was saying. For some reason, it hurt to see Andy's eyes look so vulnerable.
"I won't," Raiden replied, shaking his head. Andy smiled but it faded when he added, "But I won't help you either."
Andy breathed out a heavy sigh and formed a small smile on her lips. Gently squeezing his arm, she answered, "Thank you. That's all I really ask of you."
Raiden stared at the hand gripping on his arm and looked back up to Andy's deep brown eyes. He stared at it for so long that he had forgotten how he kept reminding himself not to look in her eyes for too long. He knew that if he kept on looking at them, he'd be too engrossed in them that he would not dare look away.
Andy looked amused at his gaze. She tilted her head to the side and smiled with her eyebrows furrowed in curiosity. After a few seconds, she gently patted his arm and turned away to open the car door. But before she could even pull the knob, Raiden had pulled her by the arm and forced her to turn back to him.
Before Andy could even finish her sentence, Raiden had his lips pressed against hers. For a moment, Andy sat still, completely shocked at what was happening. She wasn't reacting – neither retaliating nor responding to the kiss. It took her a few blinks before she realized that Raiden was indeed kissing her. It took her one more blink to realize that he wasn't supposed to be kissing her. And it took her two more blinks to realize that she had to do something.
Andy raised her right hand to hit his face to make him pull away. But Raiden's reflexes were much faster than hers and he easily caught her hand and gripped on it tightly. Slowly he pulled away, his face only inches away from hers.
"What do you think you're doing?" Andy asked, biting her lip. She still felt the heat of Raiden's lips lingering on it. Raiden was still holding onto her hand tightly.
For a moment, Andy thought that Raiden kind of looked surprised himself. However, the surprised look only lasted for a second and changed into a mischievous smirk.
"You didn't think my silence was for free, did you?" Raiden answered, an arrogant smile formed on his lips.
Andy looked completely flabbergasted at what she heard him say. She glared at him and tried to pull away from his grip. Raiden let her loose but before she could say something to him in retaliation, he grabbed her face with both his hands and pulled her in for another kiss.
For a while, Andy tried to push him away but resulted into no avail. She opened her mouth to tell him to stop but it only allowed free passage to her mouth. The kiss was slow, calm, and gentle. There was no tension or intense passion but the serenity seemed fragile. Andy felt like anytime a raging surge of emotions will explode anytime as the kiss went on.
For some reason unknown to her, she had found herself finally kissing back, deepening it. She started feeling the still unconfirmed creatures slithering its way inside her stomach. Only this time, she felt herself leaning toward the hope that they were butterflies that kept fluttering.
After almost five minutes, Raiden had abruptly broken away from their lip-lock. Gripping tightly on the stirring wheel of the car, he panted heavily. For a moment, Andy trailed on when he turned away. She was panting too and although she felt a surge of temporary disappointment, shock lingered in her mind as she tried to absorb what had just happened between the two of them.
Raiden kissed her. But that was not the problem. The problem was answering the question why she was kissing back and why she liked it.
Both of them took a while to recover. Once they did, Raiden had automatically unlocked the car doors. Without looking at Andy, he bade her farewell.
"Bye," he told her, refusing to make eye contact.
"Yeah," Andy said, feeling the awkwardness of the situation. "Bye."
Andy didn't say another word and immediately stepped out of the car. For awhile she stood outside of it, as she stared at the tinted window of Raiden's car. It didn't take long for Raiden to drive away from Shin's mansion but Andy remained standing there, unable to process everything that happened and what was to happen from then on.
Without Andy noticing, Shin was rushing outside of the house and stepped outside of the gates. He turned to her to face him.
Cupping her face with both of his hands, he looked at her empty gaze with great concern. He probed for any possible damage before speaking to her.
"Are you okay?" he asked, looking directly into her blanked out eyes. "I was so worried about you!"
Shin waited for her to say something but she didn't utter a single word. Her eyes were focused on him now, though. He evened out a straying strand of her hair before adding, "Mr. Rondo came to drop off the clothes you bought. He wouldn't tell me where you were. He said you were running an errand for your grandfather and I know you won't ever do that. Where were you?"
Andy still wasn't responding. However, her eyes looked more conscious and responsive since she was looking at her with a confused expression. Sighing, he continued, "What happened, Andy?"
"He found out," Andy finally managed to muster. Shin looked at her with a confused expression. She added, "Raiden found out."
"He knows who I really am."
Not saying another word, Shin merely nodded in acknowledgment before pulling her in a tight embrace. Andy buried her face on his chest. She muttered something but Shin was attentive enough to hear it.
"He kissed me."
Shin's heart sank upon hearing those words.
The house was empty… devoid of people.
Zuki had wondered why they still bothered to come home every weekend when he and his sister knew that it would inevitably end with just the two of them along with dozens of house servants with their parents making another excuse of being absent due to their business trips. Their parents were insistent on them always coming home only to apologize for not being able to make it anyway. If he had his way, he never would even bother to go back home because he found no point to it since there's no one to go home to.
It was his younger twin sister, Yuki, who had remained insistent and optimistic about the whole ordeal. She kept on believing that if they just keep going home like their parents tell them to, there will be a time when they would actually be there with their arms wide open. However, Yuki would always end up heartbroken in the end when she finds that it was the head maid that would always welcome them with a tight embrace.
Their absentee parents were never really there when they were growing up. It was their head maid who practically raised them and provided their needs. A very long time ago he was as optimistic and trusting of their parents as Yuki always had been. He woke up to the cruel reality on their eighth birthday when their parents promised a family-only birthday celebration only to have them celebrate it alone.
A huge pile of gifts were stockpiled at the table close by the long dining table where various meals and a huge birthday cake were placed on top of. Yuki and Zuki were seated together at one end of the dining table with birthday caps placed on top of their heads.
They were very excited. Their parents had promised to celebrate their birthday as one family. They didn't invite their friends because they wanted to make it a special day with their parents. Zuki was wearing a coat and tie while Yuki wore a beautiful light blue dress just for the occasion. Their parents were arriving in less than an hour.
"We're eight!" Yuki celebrated hugging her brother tightly. "I can get married!"
"No, Yuki," Zuki corrected his sister. "We're too young to get married."
For a moment, Yuki pouted but turned jovial again. "That's okay! I have you! And I have mom and dad. Where are they?"
"They'll be here," he told his sister who had a frown on her face. "I promise."
Two hours had passed and their parents still hadn't arrived. Yuki was so close to crying and all Zuki could do was try and convince her that they were just going to be late for a few more hours. They kept waiting until it was nightfall and that was when a butler had approached them and informed them that their parents won't be able to arrive but wished them a happy birthday.
"You said they were coming!" She yelled at her brother, pushing him away. "Liar! Liar! Liar!"
Yuki ran off, crying. Zuki stood up and called after her, "Yuki! Yuki! Come back!" It was useless. He only heard a door was loudly shut. Furious, he turned to the butler and ordered, "Please tell mom and dad I don't want to see them ever again."
Ever since then, Zuki had accepted the fact that they had indifferent and irresponsible parents. He took it his responsibility to care for his younger sister. He acted like a parent, a brother, and best friend to his sister because he always thought all they really had was each other.
"Zuki, mother called," Yuki said as peeked inside his room. He was busy with watching a football game re-run.
Without looking back he replied, "Let me guess. They won't make it… again."
"Maybe their busy with work," Yuki tried to defend their parents as she sat down beside her brother.
"Yuki," he called her name turning to her. "They're always busy with work."
"But I really thought they'd be home…" she trailed off.
Zuki reached for the remote control and turned off the television. Turning to her sister, she placed an arm around her shoulder.
"Don't worry, sis," he comforted her, smiling. "You have me like always. And if you're so tired of me, you have Kei – Ow!"
She punched her brother's chest before laughing. She told him, "Kei? Seriously? One more day with him in a week and I think I'll choke to death."
"You did have a huge crush on him back then," Zuki countered, smirking at his frowning sister.
Yuki shuddered in disgust. She answered, "Please, brother, don't remind me. That was a long, long, long time ago – back when I didn't know he was gay and that he's the most annoying friend anyone could ever have."
"Now, now… Why do I hear you talking about me behind my back?"
The twins turned to the door and found Kei leaning beside the doorway with his arms folded. Yuki's eyes widened in shock and stood abruptly.
"What are you doing here?" she yelled at him. "How long have you been standing there? What did you hear?"
"Relax, woman!" he said, raising his hands in surrender. "I didn't hear anything I didn't know before."
"It's no secret. I've always known you've got the "hots" for me," Kei answered, smiling slyly. "I catch you staring at my ass all the time."
"I do not stare at your ass!" Yuki yelled defensively. She turned to Zuki to reiterate it. "I do not stare at his ass." Zuki merely shrugged.
Once she turned back to yell at Kei even more, she was surprised to see his back was turned. Slowly, her eyes started to drift downwards and before she even realized it, she was actually staring at his ass.
"See?" Kei turned his head. "Told you."
Infuriated, Yuki kicked his buttocks and shoved her way past him. Her cheeks were red out of anger and embarrassment. In her room, she buried her face on her pillow as she squealed in frustration. Zuki and Kei were probably having a good laugh over what had just happened at the other room. She needed female companionship – someone who would understand the feeling of being found out by the one you had a crush on.
She thought about calling Akiko but the girl was sort of naïve that she'd probably offer very little help and tell her that, "Maruyama-san is an amazing person" in her sweet and innocent voice. She contemplated on contacting Andy but she had specifically told everyone not to contact her on weekends since she had important affairs to attend to. Besides, Andy would probably end up telling her to get over it since it's not big of deal and bring the conversation to a direction where the discussion would be mostly about Andy her self.
Samara seemed to be the best person to contact at that point. Out of the females in the group, she was the best listener. She'd let you talk for hours without losing interest or interjecting. She was convinced that she'd call her to meet somewhere or come over.
"Hello?" Samara answered the phone after Yuki dialed her number. "What is it, Yuki?"
"I need a friend," Yuki replied. "Come over at my house."
"Uhh… What?" Samara asked loudly, trying to block out the loud yelling at the background.
"You're stupid!" a voice screamed.
"If I'm stupid, you're an idiot!" another voice snapped back.
"Oh, yeah! Since when did you meet an idiot with an I.Q. thrice that of a dunce?"
"Well, you sure are acting worse than a dunce!"
"Come over," Yuki raised her voice. "Kei is here as well."
"Hey! Will you stop throwing your books at me! I'll kick you out!"
"Oh, I'm daring you to kick me out!"
She heard Samara trying to control her laughter. Yuki waited patiently when Samara finally answered, "Sure! Text me the address. Bye!"
Before Samara shut off the phone, Yuki heard someone scream and a loud crash erupted before the line went dead.
Andy had a good grasp of what the definition of a very bad Sunday morning was. It involved being woken up by Shin at six in the morning only end up finding herself being scolded by three of her best friends, two of which were thousands of miles away. Three-way video phone call was not invented for the sole purpose of scolding a sleep friend, Andy believed. She remembered the events of the morning.
"Can we just eat breakfast first before we start the scolding procedure?"
"Do you see what I have to deal with here?" Shin complained facing the big flat screen TV with faces of both Gene De La Vega and Arianne Zamora, Andy's female best friends, looking back at them.
"Andy, explain your self," Gene said in a parental tone. "How did he find out?"
"Yes, Ate Andy," Arianne added. "I thought you said you were being careful. Why on earth did you get caught?"
"Why am I the one being ganged up? It wasn't my intention to go out on a blind date with him!" Andy complained defensively. She didn't like it that her best friends were joining forces against her. "I thought you girls were on my side on this one!"
"But you were found out," Arianne replied. "That changes everything."
Gene nodded in agreement. "You had an advantage when nobody knew who you were. But now, someone does know. How are you certain he'd keep his mouth shut? You said this Raiden guy didn't like you."
"They kissed," Shin ratted out to Andy's friends. His hands were balled into fists. "That guy kissed Andy and she," glaring at Andy, "let him."
"Oh, Ate Andy! How could you!" Arianne gasped in disbelief. "Did you even consider how Shin would feel?"
"Maybe it's time to take off the mask, Andy," Gene suggested, sighing. "You know secrets are never meant to stay secret."
Sighing, Andy sat down and replied, "I know. But I can't back down now. Besides, I still have a party to plan. Right, Shin?"
Shin rolled his eyes and heaved a sigh. He gave in. "Yeah. Don't worry, girls. I'll keep an eye on her," he assured Gene and Arianne.
"Gosh! Why are you spoiling her?" Gene complained. "Next time, don't ask for our help if you're going to give in anyway, Shin."
After shrieking for one more time, Gene's line disconnected. Arianne pursed her lips and took a while before speaking.
"Well… I'm going now. I got a photo shoot," she said. "Think about what we said, Andy, okay?"
Andy nodded but she wasn't sure if she really was going to consider thinking about it at all.
Now, it was almost lunch time and she was whiling it away as she waited outside the Apple Store building with a cup of iced cappuccino and blueberry roll. Burgers and pizzas were out of the question when she found out she just gained a pound from last night. After the incident with Raiden, she resorted to eating more junk than she would usually eat in a week.
She had just bought a new Macbook Air laptop, much to her delight. The delight and happiness had slowly faded away after she had been waiting for almost an hour and Arashi still hadn't arrived to pick her up. It was a good thing she was just wearing a white shirt, blue jeans, and sneakers or else she probably would have decided to leave after five minutes from feet pains.
After a few more minutes with her patience wearing very thin, a white SUV had stopped in front of her. A man in a trench had stepped out of the car and approached her. She eyed him suspiciously, taking a step back just in case he posed any danger.
"Are you Miss Andy Nakamura?" The man asked her.
"Who's asking?" Andy responded with a question. The man took the hint that she was the person he was looking for.
"I serve Young Master Yamamura," he introduced himself. "He said to pick you up at this time at the Apple Store."
"I'm sorry," Andy began to speak after a moment of contemplation. "I don't like going off somewhere with some stranger I don't know whether or not you represent someone I know."
As if on cue, the man's mobile phone rang and he answered, "Yes, sir. I will tell her."
"Young Master Yamamura demands your presence as soon as possible," the man told her.
Andy raised her eyebrow. "You can tell him that I will remain absent if don't see his presence here and now."
Suddenly, the tinted window of the backseat of the car pulled down, showing the orange-headed figure of Arashi Yamamura. His mobile phone was placed on his ear.
"Tell Ms. Nakamura that if she doesn't get inside the car, I would have to drag her in myself," he said over the phone before he turned it off.
The trench-coated man looked at Andy as began to speak, "Young Master Yamamura wishes me to tell you that –"
"Oh my God, you've been there this whole time?" Andy snapped at him, walking towards the car. "Why didn't you just come out?"
"Look! It's Arashi Yamamura!" A teenaged girl yelled out to the friends who were with her. Without a moment of hesitation, they darted towards the car.
"That's why," he pointed at the group of girls running for them. "You better get in now before we get mobbed."
She didn't need to be told twice. She opened the car door and scooted inside. If Arashi and Andy shared something in common, they both knew the feeling of being chased around by crazed fans and admirers. She could empathize somehow.
Empathy, though, had its limitations. It was only a matter of time before they were at each other's throats again.
Andy knew the definition of extravagance. She lived and breathed it all her life. She grew up inside a luxury mansion with a closet three times larger than her own bedroom. However, there was something else off about the Yamamura Manor comparison to her home. If she considered her home to be extravagant, Arashi's home was the over-the-top kind among the most extravagant. The Greek-style mansion with over a fifty rooms was located at the center of a 20-hectar land. A different building was built as a sports complex composing of an Olympic size swimming pool, badminton and tennis courts among other sports training center. Another building had been meant for social functions while one building was specifically meant to house the dozens of cars and motor vehicles owned by the Yamamura Family. There was even a separate compound where the servers, maids, butlers, and security guards resided in.
Andy couldn't help but leave her mouth hanging slightly open. She had grown accustomed to the traditional palace she grew up in at the Nakamura Household. Their palace was definitely three times bigger than the Yamamura home but it didn't emanate the same quality of glamour and extravagance that Arashi's house did. On the other hand, her parents owned a lot of mansions back in the Philippines. However, they did not have an opportunity to buy a house that was as big as Arashi's. Besides, she always lived by herself most of the time so there was no need to have a ridiculously large house that would only end up being empty. Andy found that scenario too depressing.
"Some place you got here," Andy complimented, her eyes traveling around the receiving are of the mansion.
Arashi merely shrugged. "A commoner like you had never been inside a big house before? Well, I'm not surprised."
Andy shot him an angered look. Breathing deeply, she tried to relax before speaking. "Can we just get this over with? I really don't want to stay here longer than I should."
"As you wish," he agreed. Grabbing her wrist, he added, "Let's go up to my room now."
"Wait, what?" Andy looked mortified, pulling her hand away. "I am not staying in your room, okay?"
Arashi rolled his eyes and grabbed her wrist again. "Relax. I'm not going to do anything to you. My personal library and study area is in my room. I won't exactly take you to my bed."
Andy still eyed him suspiciously but decided to give in. Arashi's room was located at the topmost floor of the right wing of the manor. He was not kidding when he said that his room was big. His room was as good as an apartment that could fit three families of five. His room was divided into five parts. He had a study area and a library at the leftmost corner of the room. He had an entertainment are at the right corner of the room. There was also a smaller room meant for his wardrobe. On one side of the room was music and arts area where his musical instruments and other artistic materials were located. At the center of the room was a double king-sized bed that could fit an entire family of seven.
The enchantment and magic that the room had initially affected Andy temporarily easily faded when they finally decided to go to the study area and discuss their plans in preparation of the academic triathlon tournament. They had been arguing over who was an expert on what specific field that was going to be part of the tournament.
"I told you I'm good at Mathematics!" Andy yelled to him the same sentence for the fourth time already. "You take Science!"
"I'm a guy. I'm naturally better in Math. It's an evolutionary truth," Arashi countered, plumping his pen down the table. "You take Science!"
Andy shrieked in frustration. She stood up and forcefully pointed a finger at him. She yelled, "God, you're so sexist! Not every girl in the world is stupid."
"You're stupid!" He yelled at her.
Infuriated, she snapped back, "If I'm stupid, you're an idiot!"
This time, Arashi stood up and slammed his hands on the table. He retorted, "Oh, yeah? Since when did you meet an idiot with an I.Q. thrice that of a dunce?"
"Well, you sure are acting worse than a dunce!" Andy replied, folding her arms and with an eyebrow raising.
"I would have to if I'm dealing with one," Arashi replied smartly at her with a smirk. All of a sudden, he felt a hard object hit his chest.
"Hey! Will you stop throwing your books at me! I'll kick you out!" He threatened Andy with a book raised over her head as she was about to throw it at him.
"Oh, I'm daring you to kick me out!" She yelled back at her before throwing the book at him. It almost hit his head.
"That's it! I'm done being nice!" Arashi snapped. He took out a big hard-bound dictionary out of the stand and raised it up to throw it towards Andy, who squealed in fear.
Andy started running towards the door. She looked back only to find a giant book flying towards her. Squealing, she ducked down.
"Anyone hung – Ahh!" A female voice screamed and a crashing sound of shattered glass was heard.
"Aunt Mayumi!" Arashi called out before running towards his young aunt who laid flat on the doorway's floor.
Andy looked up to see a woman, not much older than they are, being assisted by Arashi to stand up uprightly. Once the woman had regained her balance and composure, she carefully fixed her dark brown-colored hair that reached beyond her shoulders. Looking composed, she glared at Arashi and pinched his left ear with so much force that it made him yelp in pain.
"Ouch! Auntie," Arashi complained, rubbing his ear.
"Am I such a terrible guardian that you would want to kill me with a dictionary?" his Aunt Mayumi yelled at him. "And, in front of this lovely woman?"
Arashi rolled his eyes. He explained, "I wasn't trying to hit you. I was trying to hit her." He pointed at Andy, who was now kneeling on the floor.
"Why would you hit such a pretty girl? You bring a girl home for the first time and you already want to get rid of her?" Aunt Mayumi looked disappointed. She commanded, "Help her up."
"What? No!" He denied, turning his back from his aunt.
"I said… HELP HER UP!" His aunt screamed and before he and Andy could make a move, Mayumi had already kicked Arashi's buttocks, making him lounge forward and lose his balance. For some weird law of physics, Andy ended up becoming his cushion. He fell on top of her.
Without removing himself from Andy, he sat up, looking spitefully at his Aunt who was smiling and looked very pleased. His aunt took out a camera somewhere in her pocket and snapped a photo of Andy and Arashi with surprised looks on their faces.
"Aww… My nephew's all grown –"
"What happened? I heard something crash. Are you o – Okay…" Another female figure had appeared by the doorway. She looked initially worried but after seeing Andy and Arashi on top of each other on the floor, she suddenly looked amused.
"Samara?" Andy called the other girl's name. She barely recognized her friend with her hair tied into a messy bun. "What are you doing here?"
"I live here," Samara answered with obviousness in her tone.
"What?" Andy looked at Samara then to Mayumi who merely nodded and shrugged. Then she turned to Arashi, who was still sitting on top of her, and she waited of answer.
Sighing, he rolled his eyes. He finally answered Andy's confused look.
However, his response confused Andy even more.
"She's my cousin."
A/N (Supplemental): I personally thank the following readers (I've PMed most of them but i want to thank them on public):
Follow-The-Spiders You are just AMAZING. :D I OWE YOU A LOT.
PixieFlorence, Raiden Fan (I know who you are :P), Carmel March, NotToBeMessedWith, Ichigo325, cuteangel, pat-the-tap (You're back!), sadlyneverafterx, AMarieD, wolveshill, the little prince
ALL OF YOU ARE GREAT AND I'M GRATEFUL TO EACH AND EVERYONE OF YOU. :D
In my native tongue, "Maraming Salamat! (Thank you very much!)"
READ AND REVIEW! Most of all, ENJOY! - Misspointless