I spun around on the chair in my Dad's office for the third time that day as I listened to Aki talk with Mom and Dad. Almost a month passed since I came back home to this rural town. Waking up. Eating. Sleeping. With nothing else to do, I spent my time in a daze. The only slightly interesting thing to do could be found in the office my Dad uses for business matters related to the café he and Mom owns. With an old fashioned computer and many books, I had found a way to pass time.
Rarely, this routine changed when I would try and coax Aki into letting me hear his voice, but he'd just stare at me and say nothing. Sometimes it would become awkward when he'd stop in the middle of saying something to Mom and Dad when I walk in. When this happened, Aki would cling to Mom's shirt and turn his head away from me. Mom and Dad noticed the tense atmosphere between us but didn't speak up.
My poor and torn heart. It hurts too much Aki. (˃̥̥ω˂̥̥̥)
One day during breakfast Mom suddenly slammed her hand down on the table, making it shake. I thought it would break! It's frightening when she gets mad.
"I've had enough! Harumi, how long are going to act like this?! I feel bad for Aki who needs to put up with a mother like you. You're 22 years old with no job and a son! I refuse to continue having a grown child moping in my house!"
"It's not like there is a job I can do around here," I mumbled. This wasn't me complaining, since it is the truth. The café they run is built on making sweets. I tried helping…let's just say I was forbidden to enter the kitchen area. When it comes to cooking food, you can say I'm decent, but anything sweet ends up turning sour. Strange, seeing as how I love eating anything sweet since I was little.
Mom wiped Aki mouth clean as he was eating, while glaring at me at the same time. You're spoiling Aki too much Mom...not that I can blame her…I want to spoil him too…if only he'd let me.
"During the first few months after you left, didn't you tell me you took on a job as personal care assistant?" She snorted.
I have a bad feeling about this.
"My friend's uncle needs daily assistance with some things."
Startled, I stood up. "That was a few years ago and it was only for a short while. I've forgotten all about it!"
"Don't make a fuss. Besides cooking and driving him places, you only need to do small errands like cleaning and washing clothes. Maybe you'll learn something and become a better parent."
Reluctantly, I sat back down. "If it's so easy, why can't he find someone?"
"Mhm, he's a little picky with his food."
Lies! That's definitely not the only reason.
"Anyways, I've already recommended you and she has happily accepted." She said, looking away from my widened eyes. "He's been informed that you will be there at 10am."
That's...in ten minutes!
As if reading my mind, she continued. "Don't worry, he only lives a few minutes away."
…10 minutes later.
I found myself walking in the sun and breathing heavily while following behind Dad. Mom has surely decided to torture me. She knows I hate the sun and refused to let me take her car, giving a reason such as "rely on transportation so much and you'll become lazy".
"You'll be okay. I'm sure you'll handle it fine." Dad suddenly said.
Of course I'll be fine. Who do you think I am?
"Although he's a little stubborn, he's a good guy."
No problem. Although I'm a little worried, I'm sure he's a great guy.
"He might be a bit difficult, but the pay is nice."
A little difficulty is normal. Besides, how can I say no to such generous payment?
"In the past month, only two assistances were fired, and one disappeared. It's better than before so he's probably calmed down."
Dad continued talking as if he didn't notice my panicked expression. "His name is Haruki."
He smiled when seeing my reaction. "His name was given to him when he was born in summer. That's why I think you'll both get along."
I'm thinking it will be the complete opposite.
I stopped in front of a rather large house that I have no memory of ever being there and walked to the door. Before I could ask Dad anything he quickly left after telling me that it's okay to go in, but just in case, I knocked on the door. When no one answered after my third try, I tried twisting the door knob only to find that it wasn't locked.
For some reason I felt like a thief, especially since it was so dark inside.
I stumbled my way to what seemed to be the living room and finally found the light switch. When I wanted to turn on the light, I heard a deep, yet warm voice came from the chair. "Don't turn the lights on."
Frightened, I couldn't stop my instinct of fearing the dark and turned on the lights.
A man who looked around 30 years old leaned against the chair with his eyes closed. What surprised me wasn't his handsome and mature appearance that had a tinge of weariness to it, but the long cut on his right eye that traveled down his face.
I was further stunned when his eyes fluttered open and I couldn't find any expression in them. It was as if the sun had lost its light.