As Shiva Shiroyaki performed her daily routine of making breakfast for both her and her younger brother Kenma, she casually played some Korean r&b in the background while doing so. Shiva was of Japanese and German descent but had a particular fondness for Korean culture and language. Her father Kosaku of question why she wanted to be like those damn Koreans to which she often replied: "It's the trend, they're just so cool!". Shiva believed that he was holding his prejudice toward them when she believed he should be more worried about choosing a bias in one of the k-pop groups.
Kenma, her brother about three years her junior, had finally awoken to the fresh smell of cinnamon french toast being made in the family kitchen. "Good morning Kenma!" Shiva recited with a bit of aloofness to her voice as she had been splitting her attention between the stovetop and the latest album of one of her favorite idol groups.
"You're always on your phone sis, even when your supposed to be the adult." Kenma chided while rummaging through a drawer. He pulled out enough silverware for the two siblings as there had been plates and cups set up on the table. Breakfast had always been between the two of them most days as Kosaku and their stepmother Minazuki often had to be at work in the early hours in the morning. They were often gone before the children woke up, rarely seeing them before the late evening when they both returned.
The family had spent the last 14 years in the United States where they had settled in Boston due to Kosaku's work commitments. He had worked for the Mayor of Boston while in the states and the family had grown accustomed to the American way of living. Kosaku had met Minazuki, an American born Japanese, while both working for the Mayor's re-election campaign. They wed soon after and they had been together for the last 10 years. They lived in the greater Boston neighborhood of Cambridge where both Shiva and Kenma attended elite private schools in the area near Harvard University.
They had basically grown up Americans and Japan was a very foreign place to the siblings. They originally came back to Japan because Kosaku's father Kotetsu had recently been widowed after losing his wife Akane to cancer. After the funeral, Kosaku was offered a better position in Tokyo where he gladly accepted the position after much support from Minazuki. He mainly did this for two reasons; to help his elderly father with whom he had a closer relationship with than his siblings, the other was to show his children where their family had originated and that they should be proud of their Japanese lineage. Shiva and Kenma reacted with mixed feelings, while they were open to the experience of moving to Tokyo, where their father had grown up. They were however not ready to say goodbye to the lives they had while in Boston.
Shiva sort drowned herself in all that is Hallyu, or Korean culture. She found herself rebelling against her culture and mainly dabbling in Korean culture and even in Korean music, even though most k-pop bands promoted in the Japanese language. Shiva did speak fluent Japanese whereas Kenma was still grasping the language.
Kenma always speaks English at home and it doesn't quite help that he often speaks English with the locals also. He has sort of became an English tutor with the local shop owners as a result of his perceived lack of effort into the Japanese language. Minazuki even convinced him to volunteer a couple of days a week at the community centre tutoring younger children in English just to put his skills to work. He often gave them homework such as listening to "The Black Album" by Jay Z or anything ever made by Prince. Kenma stated that he wanted the kids to have a bit more "swagger" in their pronunciation.
Back into breakfast, Shiva begins to scream in excitement as one of her favorite songs comes on during shuffle mode. "Ugh, what now?" Kenma groans as he tries to continue his breakfast.
"My song is on!" Shiva does a weak twerk while dancing around the kitchen table...poorly. "Did you see my bag, did you see my bag, it's hella trophies and it's hella thick. HELLA THICK". Kenma continues to silently judge while eating breakfast as his sister makes in his opinion a complete ass of herself. Shiva continued on and Kenma became more annoyed by the second.
"You know it's all just one big scam right? These entertainment companies get you to base your entire life on a group of malnourished people that don't even know you exist. You could be listening to real music like Nas or even Mariah Carey but yet you choose that bubblegum shit." Kenma coldly lectures while sipping on some green tea. Kenma has always been a bit beyond his years when it came bit music and entertainment. " You have pictures of them all over your room, you spent $400 USD on Papa's credit card to go to Kcon just so you could see one group perform for five minutes, and you even talk about you oppas in your sleep. Face it, Shiva, you're obsessed." The malice in Kenma's voice was especially evident in this instance.
Shiva paused briefly. Sensing the heat quickly rushing to her face, she quickly covered her face instinctively. "So" she retorted muffled between her palms. "I'm fully aware of the implications but this is what makes me happy. Their music is my joy," Shiva did not have much beyond that to say about why she was so immersed in the culture. She thought to herself "Did she not like who she is or her ancestry? Was it because it was trendy?"
"I'm off to class, sis. See you later!" Kenma declared while Shiva was still in a deep state of reflection. This was sort of normal for Shiva to stare off into the distance, in almost a trance-like state. "I'm not wasting my time am I?" she muttered to herself aloud.
Shiva arose from her trance state and began to clean up the kitchen table as per usually since Kenma always leaves first. As she does this, the harsh words of Kenma echo in her mind. She thought that maybe she should stop liking that type of music and switch to a more acceptable type of music. Shiva has always dealt with people in her life constantly trying to change her. She sometimes isn't effeminate enough for her parents. Some of the people in her school make fun of her darker skin, her dingy brown eyes, her supposedly artificial honey blonde hair. Shiva was accustomed to having all aspects of her life question so how could music be any different for her.
"I'm not obsessed...am I" she states almost mockingly while cleaning. "What the hell does Kenma know. He all he listens to is mumble rap anyways. She hastens the pace of her cleaning and finishes with just enough time to spare.
Once Shiva finished she went upstairs to her room to get her school bag. She quickly hustles up the stairs and arrives at her room where she brashly opens the door. She takes a minute to look around her room for her bag, but while she did so she glanced over the numerous kpop posters that she had all over her wall, the fleece she had over her bed, and the numerous glow sticks and merchandise that littered her desk which had her computer open to a kpop screensaver. She eventually found her backpack which had another kpop idol group's logo on it and she exhaled in frustration.
"I'm not obsessed...am I?"