The Past [Rii and Kii Kalira]: Chocolates and Roses

Vana'diel date: February 880
Posted on 10 Sep 2012 01:39

It was a stupid holiday, Rii Kalira decided. Well, she had always known it was, but it had never really affected her before. They had been too young for it to matter, this St. Valentione’s Day. People gave them chocolate, and Kii gave chocolate back, and Rii thought it was stupid, and let Kii give enough for both of them, and ate her chocolate, and that was that.

It was a good arrangement. It was failing this year.

All their trouble started with the roses, two of them, fresh-cut on the edge of bloom, the deep velvet red of blood. They were accompanied by a letter, only one, addressed to Kii Kalira.

There was a rose each for her and for her sister, the sender had written, just a token of his admiration. He was wondering if Kii would please meet with him at sunset by the Bomingo Round fountain. Alone. Please. He would be waiting. He loved he desperately.

Rii didn’t bother finishing it. With a snort, she crumpled up the letter and tossed it unceremoniously on the floor. He didn’t even sign his name anywhere.

“Well?” she asked, hands on her hips, and stomped on the letter for good measure.

Kii tilted her head. “Mmm?”

“About that!” Arms flailing, Rii glowered at the offending ball of parchment. “What are you going to do about that? Are you actually planning to go?”

“Mm?” Kii asked again. “Shouldn’t I? He said he’d be waiting. It wouldn’t be very polite to just—”

“I’ll tell you what’s not polite!” The older twin gave a small hop of annoyance, her hands balled into fists, and raged around their room, kicking the letter as if it was all its fault. “What’s not polite is calling you out somewhere without even asking, and then guilt-tripping you just like that. What if you were busy? What if you didn’t want to see him? Who is he, anyway? And besides, why does he want to meet when it’s dark? With no one else around? He can’t have good intentions!”

“Rii…” Kii sighed, as she always did when her sister went into one of those kinds of moods . “I can take care of myself, you know. I won’t let him do anything I don’t want to. And besides,” she ventured, carefully watching Rii’s reactions, “even if he is a little presumptuous, isn’t it best to try these things out?”

“NO.” Rii stopped in her tracks. “No, no, absolutely not! He’d probably start thinking he can go out with you and kiss you and… and other stuff!”

“Other stuff? What kind of other stuff?”

Rii flushed. “I-it’s not like I know!”

And maybe she shouldn’t laugh, but Kii couldn’t help herself. At her sister’s bemused expression, she offered a smile. “All right. Will you come with me? You can protect me from all those horrible things.”

“Well, maybe I will.”

*~*~*

It was a little past sundown before they reached Bomingo Round. Kii had insisted on looking nice to the point where Rii complained suspiciously that maybe she was trying to encourage him; then Rii had insisted on matching with her. Now, dressed in white against the backdrop of night, the two sisters approached, each carrying her rose.

A tarutaru waited at the fountain, wearing clothing unfittingly formal, fiddling with his tie and gloves and buttons and a package in his hands, and peering nervously in the wrong direction. They were almost on top of him before he noticed, as their shadows fell over him. He squeaked as he spun to face them, paling when he saw not one twin, but two.

“M-m-miss Kii Kalira!” he said to Rii, bowing profusely and speaking as quickly as nature would allow. “I… I wasn’taru sure if you forgotaru poor little me waiting here. N-no disrepectaru meant, of course! You wouldn’taru have forgotten me! I prepared for this day for so long! I even wrotaru you a speech! Ahem! My dearestaru Kii Kalira—”

“Strike one,” Rii announced with a small nod.

The tarutaru froze and stared in confusion.

“Well,” she added helpfully, “and two and three and four, although you fixed one of them, at least. Kinda. But I’ll let you off the hook with just one so far, since you made all of them at once. Oh, actually, five, too. Didn’t notice that one at first.”

“M-miss Kii Kalira?”

“One!” Rii held up a finger. “Kii Kalira is that one, over there. I’m Rii Kalira. How can you even claim to be in love with her if you can’t even tell?”

The tarutaru squeaked again and turned to Kii before Rii’s call stopped him.

“Hey, I’m not done yet.” She summoned the most severest glare she could. “Two!” she said, holding up two fingers. “How dare you imply Kii would forget things? And then you tried to fix it by thinking you were too important for Kii to forget?”

“I… I didn’taru mean to—”

“Of course not,” Rii said, as if she didn’t believe a word of it. “Moving on! Four! You actually wrote a speech? A speech? How much sincerity can you get from that? Sheesh!”

The poor tarutaru was edging as far from Rii as he could now. In a tiny, terrified voice, he asked, “Wh-whataru is five?”

Five,” Rii said, taking a step closer and looming over him. “You haven’t even told us who you are yet. How would I know you’re not some weirdo prison escapee out to do all sorts of unsavory things?”

“I… I would never…”

“I can explain that one.” Both turned to the new voice, and Kii looked from one to the other in amusement. “He is miss Shirara’s brother, I think?” She waited for the nod of confirmation. “I’ve mentioned her before, Rii – the friend I usually help at the Rhinostery. This is Shirahu-Birahu.”

“Well, fine.” Rii crossed her arms and sulked. “He still coulda said. Hey, kid, didn’t I already tell you not to assume Kii would remember unimportant people like you?”

“Rii…”

“Fine, fine.” With a sigh, Rii stepped back and took a seat at the edge of the fountain. “Go say your speech, then. You’ve only got two strikes left before you’re out, though.”

Shirahu-Birahu gulped and turned to Kii, staring at her with round, fearful eyes. “M-m-my dearestaru Kii Kalira! I couldn’taru help but notice how beautiful you became, with your—”

“Oi.” Rii frowned. “What do you mean, ‘became’? Kii was always beautiful! If that’s all you came to say…”

“N-no! Of course not!”

“Well.” Rii gave a nod. “Strike two.”

The tarutaru began to speak faster. “With your eyes of purestaru gold and your lips of softaru coral and your hair like whitaru snow—”

Rii frowned again. “I thought we talked about this already.”

“We… we…” Shirahu-Birahu threw a beseeching glance at Kii.

“Just skip over this part,” she suggested.

There was a mumbling of something about ears and tails and black tips before he looked up with a stricken expression. “But I wrotaru a poem about Kii Kalira’s beauty!”

“Fine, say it.” Rii rolled her eyes.

“Oh, thank you, thank you!” For a moment, Shirahu-Birahu beamed. “Ahem! Kii Kalira, you are the cutest cataru I can ever recall calling my companion! You are keen and kind, and… and…”

The stricken look was back.

“What, forgot the rest?” Rii rolled her eyes again. “Whatever, it’s probably even worse. What kinda poem is that, anyway?”

“It’s a perfectly good poem!” the taru insisted. “It uses the poetic device of alliteration!”

“Yeah, and nothing else.” Rii waved a hand flippantly. “Just get on with it.”

“Next is… next is…”

“Oh, I give up.” Rii stood, stretched, and grabbed Kii’s arm. “Unless you have something important to say, we’re going home.”

“Waitaru!” In a jumble of words came, “Will you come over for dinner?”

“No,” Rii growled at the same time as Kii’s “Yes”.

The sisters looked at each other.

“No,” Rii repeated. “No, no, no. We’re not going.”

“I’m going to go.” Kii offered a placating smile. “Nothing’s going to happen. And I want to see Miss Shirara again.”

“G-greataru!” Shirahu-Birahu declared, and wondered if maybe this was all a horrible idea instead.



Category: So Many Dreams

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