Well hi there! :3 It's Moonchild10 here with another yaoi story. This one is a sort of side story to my and Brittany's novel, "Street Angel" (also posted here). In SA there are demons, and the Yamashitas happen to be the best kind of demon: shinigami. But what happens when a human accidentally interferes? Yaoi, of course! I love writing about shinigami, but it never occurred to me to give them normal family dynamics and put them in a shoujo-style story until now…

Here's a character reference chart just in case it gets confusing:
Haniko "Hani" Yamashita: the father
Renjiko "Ren" Yamashita: the younger of the twin brothers
Reimiko "Rei" Yamashita: the older sister and the only female
Hariko "Hari" Yamashita: the older twin brother
Michiko "Michi" Yamashita: the youngest brother

I'm going to use this space to pimp Ilze09's shounen-ai story "Forever Mine". It's filled with intrigue and wonder and it's so charming and mesmerizing and funny! I definitely recommend reading it! I'm totally addicted to it, and you will be too!

"Hey! Where is the damn butter!?"

It was only seven in the morning, and already chaos had broken loose. If it wasn't the butter, it was always another thing. Sighing and leaning against the doorframe, Yamashita Haniko watched the early-morning antics of his brood, trying hard not to laugh out loud (this tended to make them more than a bit disagreeable). Adjusting his yukata, he let the early morning sunlight streaming through the shoji screen warm his red and gold hair.

"You put the butter away last night!" Renjiko, the younger of Hani's twin sons, answered the question with slight annoyance. His usual apathy was broken in the morning, his grumpiness taking over and making a scowl slide across his face as he turned to face his sister. "I have no idea where it is…"

"Well are you sure, Ren?" Reimiko asked, raising her eyebrow at her brother as she pushed a lock of her long mahogany hair from her eye where it had been obscuring her view of breakfast. "Because I could have sworn you were using it last night to put on your onigiri. God, you have weird food preferences. And what's with the midnight snacking, anyway?"

"Shut up, Rei," Ren said calmly, taking a seat at the low table and picking up a pair of chopsticks. He poked listlessly at his food for a moment and grimaced. "Where's Hari?"

"He's getting Michi ready for breakfast," Rei explained as she took a seat across from him and started in on her own food. "Do you really have to complain about everything?" she shot him a challenging look across the table and held back a giggle at his obvious irritation. "It's really unattractive for a boy your age. You could even be categorized as a 'hard to please' housewife!"

"Housewife?" Ren bristled, raising his eyes to his sister's as he took the bait just as she wanted. "How am I a housewife, dammit!? I'm more of a man than Hari is!" his silver hair, streaked with white, partially obscured his eyes but it was still clear that fury danced in them. The one that was gold shone with even more rage than the one that was blue, and the whole effect was very mismatched.

"It's so impolite to belittle others to make yourself look better!" Rei whistled. "You really aren't a housewife at all… you act more like a gold digging type in my opinion. I'm sorry, I guess I was mistaken before," Rei took a calm sip of her milk, chuckling slightly under her breath and disguising it with a small cough. "You seem much more inclined to marry for the short-term and get money out of it than have to spend your whole life slaving for your man!"

"Hey, shut up!" Ren squeaked indignantly, slamming a fist on the table and making a dish of peaches bounce. "What's with all this about me marrying a man!? I'm not gay!"

"Judging by those pants, I beg to differ!" Rei told him quietly, taking a long sip of her miso soup to hide the fact that her chin was shaking from hidden laughter. She glanced at him over the rim of her bowl, and when she found that he was glaring deeply as grinned and put the bowl down. "I'm just kidding, baby brother!" she assured him with a wave of her hand. "Maybe you shouldn't get so easily worked up! That's probably the reason you're a negative 56..."

"Shut up about that," Ren hissed, his irritation clearly rising as he reached for the natto. He kept his eyes downcast and served himself, his hands shaking slightly with repressed emotions. "It needs butter…"

"Well maybe if you hadn't lost it--"

"Shut up!"

"Here is the butter!" the tension was shattered as Hariko swept into the room, his long orange hair glistening as it swished into view in the bright sunlight, the gold streaks in it giving off an especially blinding gleam. The small form of Michiko, the youngest child of the Yamashita family, clung to the front of his ornate lavender kimono. Hari carried the butter dish in one hand, supporting his little brother with the other, and moved gracefully over to the table. He set the butter down before taking a seat himself and allowing Michi to crawl into his lap. "Michi had it in his room."

"Ko-chan wanted some," Michi explained, holding up Kodora, his worn stuffed tiger. He offered his siblings a bright smile, and the shine on his short orange and gold hair seemed to form a halo, adding to his angelic appearance. His hair matched Hari's almost exactly aside from the length, and it was like looking at a mirror image. "He's really sorry he took it…"

"It's okay," Hari soothed. "No one's mad at Ko-chan,"

"Good!" Michi beamed. "Then can I have milk and sugar on my rice!?"

"Of course," Hari replied, reaching for the necessary ingredients to put together Michi's simple breakfast. He turned his attention to the others. "Are you enjoying breakfast? I think I may have burned the soup a little bit, but I hope it doesn't taste too bad!"

"How do you burn soup?" Ren wondered aloud, raising an eyebrow as Hani moved over and plopped down across from Hari, grinning in a slightly lopsided way and dishing himself up some soup.

"It looks delicious anyway, Hari. Don't even worry about it. I'm sure it tastes great," Hani waved away all thought of the soup not tasting wonderful with a simple flick of his hand and settled down to eat. "So, what's the plan for today, ladies and gentlemen?" he said this in a slight British accent, and Rei groaned, rolling her eyes at their father's attempt at humor. "Do we have any work?"

"I have a job today, but other than that I think we're all free," Rei replied, yawning and giving a luxurious stretch. While the rest of her family were wearing loose-fitting yukata for comfort (aside from Hari in his elaborate kimono), she preferred to wear her street clothes even in the house, which made her look slightly out of place among them. Despite this, she was at ease as she downed the last of her soup and flicked her eyes toward the twins. "Unless these two have something they didn't bother to tell me about."

"No, I'm completely free," Hari said happily, looking over at his twin.

"I don't have anything either," Ren admitted reluctantly, sighing into his rice. "Like I ever do, anyway…"

"Just be patient!" Hari instructed, patting his brother's wrist sympathetically, and giving him a slightly pitying glance. "I'm sure you'll get a chance to make up for everything one of these days. Just don't worry about it so much now, okay?"

"Well… I don't worry," Ren lied, as always slightly surprised at the fact that the two were twins, were supposed to be closer than anyone else, and yet they knew almost nothing about each other. Brothers were not supposed to have such issues. Hari should know by now that he was tired of waiting, that he had spent long enough agonizing over how he had to wait to finally feel worthy to even be considered a Yamashita.

"It's alright to worry," Hari explained. "But don't let it keep ruling your life! As a shinigami you don't need to worry about when it will happen! You have forever to live, and so every day is a new chance. You have an infinite number of chances," he leaned over and kissed his brother on the cheek. "And you don't need to beat yourself up about the changes not happing yet."


"They put up with me anyway," Ren thought as he glanced around at his family, his twin smiling at him and his younger brother, sister, and father all chatting animatedly about the day's plans. "After everything I've done, all I've put them through… they still love me. Why do they still want me around? I don't even deserve to be a part of this family…"

"I do have something to do, actually!" he exclaimed, standing up suddenly. All eyes in the room locked onto him, and he felt self-conscious. "I have to go out… it's actually pretty important…" he gave them a small, apologetic wave. "Sorry, I guess I'll have to hang out later."

"Well okay Ren… if that's what you want…" Hani looked concerned as he watched his son's retreating back, the silver-and-white-haired boy going up the stairs toward his room to change. "Are you alright?"

"Sure," Ren told his father as he slipped through the kitchen door. "I just forgot there was something I needed to do, that's all. I'll see you guys later," he hurried up the stairs and into his room, closing the door behind him. He leaned up against the slab of wood and ground the heels of his hands into his eyes, groaning loudly. For him, running away was always the best option. But no matter how many times he avoided things, why did it always have to be so painful?

Chapter 2 will follow soon (this story is my third priority after Street Angel and Boku no Heart, so I'll probably update those two first). So, what's Ren's deal? What's with all the family issues? Will Ko-chan steal the butter again!? Find out… soon!