Story: The Gift (chapter 3)

Authors: Handj

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Chapter 3



Chapter 3

“Where is she?” Natsuki asked Reito who was still staring at the blue haired girl, “I need to see her, tell me!”

Instead of answering, Reito turned his head to the building that houses the Fuuka special medical bay, Natsuki followed his gaze, “I am guessing that Youko-sensei is there to check up on her again.” He said not looking at Natsuki, “I wasn’t there early this afternoon to hear what Youko-sensei’s findings regarding Fujino-san’s condition, but if I’m right, she’ll be staying there for long time.” He returned his gaze at Natsuki, “I never thought I’ll see the day that Fujino-san would look like some broken doll,” He shook his head as the memory of Shizuru’s state when he found her came back to him.


“Why?” Natsuki’s voice was near whisper. What have I done to you Shizuru, and to think you are my most precious person and yet I hurt you and made you like this?

Reito frowned at Natsuki’s question, “Why?”

“Why are you helping me?” Natsuki asked head bowed down and shoulders slumped.

Reito smiled and turned his head once again at the building where Shizuru is, “I’m not doing this for you Kuga-san. I’m doing this for Fujino-san.”

Natsuki lifted her head to look at Reito, “You care for her that much?”

“I’ve done lots of bad things during the HIME carnival, some things that I wasn’t able to stopped. I care not only for Shizuru but to all of you who I’ve done wrong, but in the end, it was Shizuru who sustained the most wound. She was the only one who wasn’t able to move on and live a happy contented life.” Reito returned his gaze at Natsuki, “Tell me Kuga-san, if I tell you where in that building you could find Fujino-san, what will you do? What will you tell her? Will you admit to her the things you’ve admitted to me?”

Natsuki remained silent but she never took her eyes from Reito.

“I promised myself that I’m not leaving this place without making you confess.” He smiled, “I’m no priest, but I wanted to know if you return Fujino-san’s feelings, and from our earlier encounter, I think you do. So will you tell her?”

Will I? No that isn’t the right question the question should be, can I? I know I love Shizuru like she loves me for a long time now, but despite that knowledge, I didn’t make any move to tell her, so now that the opportunity is here, can I tell her?

“Kuga-san?” Reito pulled Natsuki out of her reverie.


“Sometimes, action is not enough Kuga-san, no matter how you express your love for her but without you confirming it through words, you will just send Fujino-san the wrong message.” Reito explained.

“Wrong message?”

“Yes, like for example…” Reito scrunched his forehead, “…Fujino-san thinking that you’re just there out of pity instead of love?”

Natsuki frowned and cross her arms on her chest, “Why would she think that?”

“A person who has done wrong against the love of her life thinks lowly of themselves, they think that they are being punished for their wrong doing, they think that they don’t deserve love and that their love ones will never look at them the way they used to. Believe me Kuga-san, I know.”


“You need to straighten yourself out Kuga-san before everything’s too late for you. One thing you never want to have is regrets for not doing what you ought to do.” Reito said before he turned his back to Natsuki, he stopped walking and without looking back he said, “She’s at the second room on the medical bay’s second floor, and Kuga-san, please think of what I’ve said, I have lots of regrets and I know how it feels, and no matter how hard I try to compensate the wrong deeds I’ve done, those regrets will remain with me for eternity.” Natsuki watched him walk away, “Fujino-san deserves to live a happy life, I wish I was the one who could give it, but it’s not me she needs.” His last words before he finally walked away from the still watching HIME.

“Arigato…Reito-san.” Natsuki whispered in the air, she turned her head to look at the medical bay and smiled, “I’m coming Shizuru, please hold on.”


Mai and Mikoto did follow Natsuki despite Fumi-san’s warning but they stopped from their tracks when they saw Natsuki having an argument with none other than Kanzaki Reito.

“Ani-ue…” Mikoto whispered, the spiked haired girl beamed and was ready to run forward when Mai held on to her arm to stop her, Mikoto looked at the fiery haired girl beside her, “Ne Mai! What are you doing?”

Mai shook her head, “We must stay here or go back to the office, I think this is the time where Natsuki doesn’t needs us to be with her.”

“But Ani-” Mai turn to look at Mikoto and smiled.

“Your brother will come to you once he’s done with Natsuki.” She explained patting Mikoto’s shoulder.

“He will?” The younger girl looked at Mai with hopeful eyes, Mai nodded. “Can we just stay here so I could watch him?” Mai nodded once again and returned her gaze at the arguing people.

They watch the two people’s movement, Mai trying to decipher what those movements mean but ends up blank, her eyes widened when she saw Reito walking their way, she was about to duck at a corner and pull Mikoto with her but was too late…

“Gokegenyou Mai-san.” Greeted Reito then he made a bow and turned his focus on his sister,


“Ani-ue…” Mikoto said but unlike earlier, Mikoto’s face bears an emotion of relief, probably relief from anxiety of her not seeing her brother again, “Ani-ue!” Mikoto cried out and ran to her brother’s open arms and started crying.

Reito didn’t say anything, kept his embrace around her little sister and then looks at Mai who is watching them. “Arigato Mai-san for taking care of my sister.”

Mai smiled, “You don’t need to thank me, I like taking care of Mikoto.”

Reito nodded his head, “I still am grateful. Mikoto is not easy to handle and I know that fact very well.” He said teasing then he looked down at his sister whose head is currently burrowed at his chest.

Mai cleared her throat, “I should probably give you two some time alone together ne?” she asked smiling at the two.

Reito returned his focus on Mai, “You truly have a wonderful heart Mai-san and I’m honored to meet you. Thank you for your consideration.” He said smiling. He waves at Mai who started walking away from them, “I shall keep Mikoto company until you return Mai-san.”

Mai nodded and turned her head to look at the retreating form of Natsuki, she ran faster to keep up with her blue haired friend and tapped Natsuki’s back once near. Natsuki turned her head to see Mai there, “I saw you and Kanzaki-san talking…Natsuki? Did something happen?” Mai said hooking an arm in Natsuki’s, she just watch Natsuki shake her head no. “Then why are you crying?”

Natsuki frowned, “I’m not crying.” She replied without her usual forceful voice, her voice a bit hoarse as well.

“Your eyes are all red and your cheeks are flushed, you can’t fool me Kuga Natsuki!” Natsuki cringed at Mai’s tone while calling her in her full name.

“Can you drop that tone?” Natsuki said trying to look irritated.

“You’re not going to brush me off again Kuga, so spill!” Mai once again used that tone dreaded by almost every one.

Natsuki sighed and collected herself, “Reito is Shizuru’s omiai…”


Natsuki frowned, “Can you stop cutting me? I thought you want to know?!” Natsuki looked at her friend.

“Gomen, gomen Natsuki, go ahead I won’t cut your story anymore, I’ll listen.” Natsuki nodded.

“Reito asked me what Shizuru is to me because he is Shizuru’s omiai, but he said that Shizuru needs me and even asked me to straighten myself out. Sometimes, that man really makes my head ache, he has this weird things going inside his head. He is Shizuru’s omiai and yet he wanted me to tell Shizuru how I really feel about her.”


“He said he found Shizuru at Kyoto and brought her here and that she hasn’t woken up for 2 days, he also said that he never saw Shizuru look like a broken doll. Jeez Mai, the thought of Shizuru hurting makes my heart constrict!”

Mai’s eye widens, “Fujino-san is here?” Natsuki nods her head then Mai looks at Natsuki with a questioning look, “So are you going to tell Fujino-san?”

“I want to, but what-”

“Baka!” Mai slapped Natsuki’s arm, “Just tell her, no buts, no what if…just tell her!”

“I’ve hurt her for so long Mai, I am afraid that she might not want to see me anymore!” Natsuki wailed and a single tear drops from her eye.

“I really have no idea how Fujino-san feels about you, but I know how you feel about her, you love her Natsuki and I know you for too long now to accurately say that you never backed out from anything. So if Fujino-san doesn’t want to see you? Will you just stop and mope around? The Kuga I know will never do that!”

Natsuki focused her eyes on Mai while saying her litany of reasons Yeah, Mai is right, why does this bothers me? Shizuru loves me more than I love her, she never gave up on me so why am I afraid? I won’t give up on her, if I have to kidnap her to listen to me, I’ll do it! Natsuki smiled then grabbed Mai by her shoulder and hugged the red head, “Arigato Mai, I’m glad I have you as my friend.” Natsuki whispered before she turned her back to Mai and waved, “Don’t wait for me Mai! I’ll contact you if I need you!” she screamed.

Mai stunned by Natsuki’s actions, stood paralyzed at her place, her eyes wide. She was brought back to reality by a tug on her arm. Looking at the source of the force, she saw Mikoto grinning at her.

“Ani-ue wanted me to give you this letter. He’s gone already and promised me that he’ll come visit us one day.” Mikoto said cheerfully.


“What are you watching? You’re face is red!” Mikoto said innocently.

Mai frowned, “Nothing!” she said before she turned, grabbed Mikoto and pulled her back to the office.

“MAI! Let go of me! MAI!!” Mikoto wailed.


Fumi has declared the meeting adjourned by the time Mai and Mikoto arrived at the office. Aside from Midori and Yukariko, no one was there so the two young HIMEs decided to return to their dorm room.

Yukino decided to go to the student council’s room instead of heading back to her room which she shared with Haruka. After all the news, her head and her body craved for a peaceful place where she can be alone. She finally reached her destination after leisurely walking from the administration’s office to the council room, she slide the door open and was stunned to see Haruka still inside, Haruka’s back was on her and the blonde girl is looking outside and she was in a state of deep contemplation.

“It’s late Haruka-chan and you’re still here?” Yukino asked softly then closing the door. The taller girl turned around to face her smiling.

“I was waiting for you. So is everything alright?” Haruka asked

Instead of answering, the brown haired girl ran to Haruka. The older girl opened her arms and received the younger girl, she wrap her arms around the smaller girl while Yukino started crying.

“Yukino? What’s the matter?” Haruka asked while she kept her arms around her. Yukino shook her head.


“Haruka-chan?” Yukino pulled away slightly from Haruka and looked at the taller girl’s face


Yukino tried to pull further away from Haruka but the older girl resisted, so with just a little space in between them, Yukino started talking, “Remember last year when we had a fight with Fujino-san?” She asked.

“That bubuzeke-ona? Yes, who would forget that? I died remember?” Yukino nodded her head.

“Gomen Haruka-chan!” Yukino said causing the older woman to push the girl further and looks at her face.

“Why are you sorry? You did nothing bad. It was that bubuzeke who tried to kill you!” Haruka frowned when she saw Yukino shakes her head no, “I saw it Yukino, and it was her!”

“She did Haruka-chan, but that time she acted like every one else.” Yukino explained. Haruka noticed Yukino’s body started shaking so she embraced the younger girl firmly.

“I do not understand you Yukino.”

“Well…I did try to kill Mai too.” Yukino felt the stiffening of the older girl’s body, “Nao-san tried to kill Natsuki, Yukariko-sensei tried to kill Mai as well. Mikoto killed Shiho and Akira…”

“What are you saying Yukino?!” Haruka said in her forceful voice.

“We all did try killing each other…and that’s because we needed to protect the most important person in our life.”


“Do you hate me Haruka-chan?” Yukino asked softly. Knowing that she might lose that one person she loves most after this confession, Yukino felt the heavy burden in her shoulder being washed away as she felt Haruka’s embrace tightened.

“I can never hate you Yukino.” Haruka said, “Was that what you talked about back there in the office?”

“Sort of.” Yukino replied, she again buries her face in Haruka’s chest, “You’re my most important person Haruka-chan.” She said, her voice faint but Haruka still heard her.

Haruka smiled, “Good!” She said happily, “You are important to me too Yukino, very important!”

Yukino pulled herself away from Haruka, “I don’t mean it that way Haruka, you’re my most important person as… as Natsuki is Shizuru’s most important person!” Yukino explained. She watches Haruka’s face contorts in different expression, Yukino knows that Haruka isn’t the brightest especially when it comes to things like this, so she is about to explain further but before she could find the words to say, Haruka pulled her closer, the older girl leaned forward.

“I think I know what you mean.” Haruka said before she closed the gap between them and the taller, older girl caught Yukino’s lips with hers.

Silence filled the room as the two girls embraced and shared their first romantic kiss. Yukino was blushing when they finally separated.

“I envy that bubuzeke because she was too strong and was able to tell Natsuki that.” Haruka said while looking intently at Yukino, she smiled when the younger girl smiled at her, “I wanted to do that for so long.” Haruka added and Yukino blushed again. Instead of saying anything, Yukino raised her hands to caress Haruka’s cheeks. “So, if the father of that baby of yours will not take responsibility, I can always help you!” Haruka said smiling.

Yukino giggled then shook her head, “I didn’t have anyone to consider as the father of my baby.” Yukino brought down one of her hands. She took one of Haruka’s and placed it on her still flat abdomen, “When you died during that day, you and my child Diana…”

“You had a child?” Haruka asked frowning.

“Yes, it’s a long story Haruka-chan, but I was one of the 12 HIMEs chosen and I was given a child, actually they are beasts who do our biddings. Mine was named Diana.”

“So-” Haruka’s words was cut by a finger across her lips.

“Hear me out please Haruka-chan?” Yukino asked in a pleading voice, Haruka just nodded her head, “So when Fujino-san killed Diana, instead of me dying you are the one who died because you were connected to my child.”

“So me and that beast is one?”

“No,” Yukino shakes her head, “You were connected, Diana’s power is linked to you since you’re my most important person and the reason I accepted Diana as my beast protector.” Haruka just nodded, “When you were brought back to life, the power of that child was returned to us but was sleeping inside our body.”

“Oh!” Haruka made a sound of understanding, “I don’t understand.” Yukino laughed at Haruka’s antic.

“The one that invented the HIME used his power to transform this energy so that we could use our powers again, for what reason I cannot tell you, but he transformed these powers into human beings, so here I am pregnant.”

Haruka was silent, contemplating. “So what are you saying?”

Yukino smiled again, “The baby came from the power wielded by my beast protector and the power of my love for you. So this baby-” Yukino puts her hand over Haruka’s hand that is still on Yukino’s abdomen, “…this baby will not even be conceived if not for you.”

Haruka’s eye widened, “You mean…you mean…that baby is because of me?!” Yukino nodded, “Then-then, then that’s also mine?!”

“If you want to put it that way, then yes it is.” Yukino replied. She gasps when all of a sudden she felt herself being lifted up into the air, “Suzushiro Haruka! Put me down!” she screamed.

“We’re having a baby Yukino!” Haruka screamed, then stopped and put the younger girl down, “Oh, gomen Yukino, I forgot I might make you dizzy with all that turning!”

Yukino laughed and held on to Haruka’s arm, “I need you to do me a favor Haruka-chan,” Yukino then said when Haruka had pacified herself.

“Anything Yukino.” She said smiling.

“We should keep it a secret; that was the meeting all about. Someone wanted us dead or someone powerful wanted this child so we must be careful-”

She was cut by Haruka leaning forward and kissing her. “I will protect you and my little Yukino!” She said once they separated.

Miracles do happen when you lease expect it Yukino thought, Haruka pulled her for another kiss before they call it a day and returned to their shared dorm room.


Miyu, Alyssa and Nao went to the church and decided to wait for Yukariko there.

“Yukariko’s baby is Watari-san’s after all.” Miyu said.

“I’m sad that Watari-san didn’t even give Yukariko-sensei time to sort this out.” Alyssa added.

“If I have to protect you and Yukariko-san, then I will.” Miyu said.


Miyu and Alyssa’s attention was caught by Nao’s sudden movement, she stood up and turned to walk away, “Where are you going Nao-san?” Miyu asked.

“I just wanted to think about all of this clearly, I’ll go see my mother in the hospital.” Nao did not look back at Miyu and Alyssa nodding their head.

“Be careful Nao-san.” Alyssa said before Nao finally disappeared before them.


The hallway leading to her destination was lightly lit, it wasn’t the darkness or her fear of hospital that was making her anxious, it was the thought of facing the woman she loves and hurts at the same time. She climbed the stairs to the building’s second floor and headed to the second room, just as she was instructed keep yourself together Kuga! Shizuru needs you more right now she told herself. Finally arriving at the door of her destination, she stopped, took a deep breath, closed her eyes this is it… Kuga Natsuki puts her sweaty, trembling hand on the door knob, before she rotates it and opens the door, she heard foot steps coming her way, so she retracted her hand and as soon as she did, the door opened to reveal Youko-sensei.

“Natsuki-san?” The doctor asked.

“Hello Youko-sensei!” Natsuki greeted, Youko smiled at her.

“What brought you here? You know that this building is not for students right? If you need me you can just wait for me at the school clinic…”

“I was told that Shizuru is here that’s why I came.” Youko smiled again and nodded her head.

“Reito-san did ask you to come? He told me he’s sending someone to look after Shizuru-san since he can’t stay tonight.” Natsuki nodded her head. “Very well then, I’ll leave you with Shizuru-san.” The older woman said and walked passed Natsuki, she was halted by the younger girl’s voice.

“Is Shizuru fine?”

Youko turned around to face the girl, “Right now? No. she needs more rest, she needs her vitamins, and lots of care…she needs to remove stresses in her life. I’m assuming that you know about her condition?” Natsuki nodded, “Well, she’s quite thin and underweight for a pregnant woman carrying a twin. But she’ll get better once we corrected everything.”

Natsuki smiled, “Arigato sensei.”

“Don’t mention it. It is my duty to make every student here healthy after all, pregnant or not.” She said before she turned around once again and left.

Natsuki then let herself in. Once inside, her eyes focused on the lone occupant of the room. Shizuru was lying on her back on the bed located at the center of the room. Natsuki walked softly knowing that the older girl is sleeping. Once beside the girl, she started looking at Shizuru, inspecting. Natsuki almost cried with what she saw, Shizuru looked so pale, her lips dry, her eyes a bit sunken and more defined since those eyes were closed, her hands were thinner than usual, her hair lost its vibrant shine, her face though a bit thin still have that beauty Natsuki adores so much. Looking down, she noticed Shizuru’s abdomen to be slightly bigger well she’s carrying two babies, which must explain why her’s is bigger than the others she thought. Her gaze shifted to Shizuru’s right hand that has an IV line, then at her left hand that is bandaged and noticed a large hematoma has formed, her left hand a bit swollen too. She walked to Shizuru’s left side, but before she got there, she took the chair at the foot of the bed and took it with her. She placed the chair beside Shizuru’s bed and seated herself. Then she put a hand over Shizuru’s left hand and started massaging it I’m not going to leave you Shizuru, I’ll take care of you and our babies she thought while still watching the sleeping form.

“We had a HIME meeting earlier Shizuru,” Natsuki said pretending that she is actually talking to an active Shizuru, “Did you know that Mashiro came back and told us some news?” she smiled then shifted her gaze from Shizuru’s face to the hand she was massaging, “You look awful Shizuru, I’ll hand you a mirror when you wake up so you’ll know how awful you look like, really!” Natsuki takes a deep breath and let it out, “Look at this hand, it’s swollen. I’ve no idea what you did to your body but I hate it!” Natsuki returned her gaze on Shizuru’s face, “So going back to the meeting, Mashiro said it was good news, but I agree with Yukino that nothing is good when it comes from the obsidian lord, I know you’ll agree with us too. Well, the meeting was about the HIME’s getting pregnant, it looks like only those whose child lost in the battle during the carnival were the one given the gift of life inside them.” She smiled, “Yeah…I’m not pregnant, Mai and Mikoto too, but if you understand my previous statement then Mai and Mikoto’s condition is understandable, but me?” Natsuki stop massaging Shizuru’s hand and squeezed the older girl’s hand a bit tightly, “It seems that you’ll be carrying both our child, I made you suffer again Shizuru, it seems that all I do is hurt you, make you suffer and make you cry. I hate myself for it Shizuru!” Natsuki’s emotions overflowed that time and she started to cry, to conceal her tears, she decided to bury her head on the space beside Shizuru. Her shoulders were shaking, her hand gripped Shizuru’s hand as if it was her lifeline, “Please be well Shizuru, I need you to be well.” Natsuki said though her voice was muffled by the bed, but her words were clear.

Perhaps too clear and a bit loud to be heard by the sleeping form, Shizuru stirred from her sleep, her eyes started moving despite the lids covering them my left hand is heavy, did Youko-sensei put anesthesia over it? With her desire to see what caused the heavy sensation on her left arm, she slowly opened her eyes and turned her head to her left, she frowned when she found blue colored hair on her side and a hand over her left hand.

“Ara, I am dreaming again.” She said hoarsely then she took a deep breath and closed her eyes once again.

Despite her state, Natsuki clearly heard that voice she missed so much, though hoarse, the Kyoto accent is still very evident so she lifted her head to look at the face of Shizuru, the older girl was awake though her eyes were closed, she could see hint of pain etched on her face, “Shi-Shizuru?”

I am dreaming, Natsuki can’t be here.

“Shizuru? Are you awake?”

This dream seems so real, I don’t want to wake up.

Natsuki stood up and leaned forward, her face is close to that of Shizuru’s, she let go of the older girl’s hand and move that arms so that it rest on Shizuru’s waist, “Please Shizuru, I know you’re awake…don’t you want to see me? Do you hate me now?” Natsuki asked, her tears hasn’t stop from falling

Hate? I hate Natsuki? That is impossible, I cannot hate my Natsuki Shizuru slowly opened her eyes again, crimson then met emerald “Dream Natsuki looks very real.” Shizuru said weakly.

Natsuki shook her head, “Baka,” she scolded the older girl but her voice was soft, “I’m real.” To prove her point she took Shizuru’s swollen hand, raised it up and pressed it on her cheek, “See? I’m real!”

Shizuru didn’t say anything instead she looked at Natsuki’s face intently.

“I’m real! I’m real Shizuru!” Natsuki cried out and buried her face on Shizuru’s shoulder.

My Natsuki…you came, “Natsuki.” Shizuru called out Natsuki’s name just like before; the tone Natsuki knew all too well, that tone that tells Natsuki that Shizuru truly loves her. The older girl lifted her arms and wrapped them around the crying girl, and Natsuki cried harder and called out Shizuru’s name over and over, “Ara, ara, my Natsuki truly cries loud like a baby.” Shizuru teased, she knew that Natsuki will react a bit violently to that phrase, but she was frozen when Natsuki’s next words were…

“I love you Shizuru, please don’t leave me again.” Natsuki’s words were still muffled as her face was still burrowed on Shizuru’s shoulder, but still the meaning is clear for the older girl. Shizuru have nothing to say as tears began to fall from her eyes.


“Mama.” Nao said softly then she seated herself on the chair beside her mother, “I’m not sure if you could hear me, but I have no one to tell what is happening to me.” Nao said shaking her head to stop her tears from falling, “I know that what I’ve been doing wasn’t something that you can be proud of, but you know that I love you very much mama and I am doing all of these for you.” Nao forced a smile to her face, “And because you’re so precious to me, I accepted something from someone powerful thinking that I needed it to protect you, and then…” Nao wasn’t able to stop tears from falling, “I’m sorry mama, you still died, I tried my best to protect you but in the end I wasn’t able to!” she raised a hand to wiped errant tears from her cheeks, “You were revived, but then…now that same powerful being gave us a gift without even informing us first, without asking if I wanted that gift or not. Mama, I’m pregnant, that stupid woman said it was the power of the beasts I had that brought this on, and the power of my love for you.” Nao decided to lay her head on the side of the bed as tears continued on leaking and her shoulder starts shaking, “I don’t know what to do!” she just let herself go and cried harder.

When she exhausted herself from crying, Nao decided to say goodbye to her mother, she lifted her head from the bed and looked at her mother’s face.


Nao’s eye widens when she saw her mother looking at her, eyes clouded with tears, her lips curve into a smile, “Mama…”

-End Chapter 3-

A/N: I did not put here the reactions of the others as I am afraid, that will end up to be a one heck of a very very long chapter and I am afraid that might bore the reader, I would put the other’s reaction on the next chapter but it wouldn’t be like this since this chapter contains the characters I like most in MAI-HIME, the others are just…well to at least give them some exposure on my story. Hehehe. I am wondering if anyone of you have thought on why Reito asked for immortality. I was just curious as there was no one who asked me why, anyways, I am afraid Reito’s presence will not be felt on the succeeding chapters until he is needed otherwise.


“You finally got the nerve to call me mama! I’ve been asking you to call me that for the last 20,000 years and you just…”


“Wait, who are you? I know we have almost the same hair color, but where the heck is my spiky, cyan haired daughter?!”


“Get out of my Lab!! And do your drama somewhere else before I blast you into space with Kione’s blaster!”


- heh! Have any guess who is our guest of honor?-

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