*Insert Standard Disclaimer, I don't own these characters aren't making any money off of it etc, etc.*
"What?" Lina's eyebrow pointed upward at Xelloss's words.
"It is a mission I have from Zelas-sama, Lina-san, you are going to have to act as Santa Clause and go to four unfortunate children." Xelloss replied with his signature smile.
Lina couldn't help but wonder what the world was coming to. A mazoku was asking a human to pose as a saint and go spread merry feelings. Was this some sort of plan they had to destroy the human race?
If so she was not understanding it one bit. "Well, it's not the first time I didn't understand a mazoku." Lina sighed. "I knew I shouldn't have let the '5,000 gold coins and a feast' reward Xelloss used allow me to be talked into this." Lina muttered as she stared at the portal that Zelas Metalium had so graciously opened for her. Lina then took out the piece of paper that had written the kid's names down. "Shigeru Ookido, Youzen, Gonou Cho, Marron Kusakabe…" She muttered their names.
"Can't they give me more information?" Lina wondered as she lightly cursed under her breath, suddenly a bunch of files fell on her head. "Ow!" Lina whined and picked up the files. In neat hand writing it was written "Since you whine so much I gave up and gave these to you. Love Zelas Metalium, Mew, Dakki, Kanzenon Bosatsu, and God."
Lina couldn't help but sigh. "WHY DON'T YOU GUY'S GO AS SANTA THEN!!!!!!!!!!!!!" Her scream echoed through out the portal. That is just too much to ask Lina…
"Shigeru…" Nanami reached out her hand but the little boy just hugged his stuffed Eevui and backed away from his sister. Nanami sighed exasperatedly. "Come on, you need to start packing to go to Grandpa's." Nanami picked up some of his things that were in the room and started to put them in boxes. Shigeru then reached in and took them out though. "Shigeru." Nanami smiled and put the stuff back in the box and Shigeru took them out again. This repeated itself till Nanami's patience was coming to an end.
"Look Shigeru, I have other things I have to do before we can leave this house!! Come on now just pack!!" Nanami shouted and just threw Shigeru's toys and books in the box. But Shigeru just took them out. "Shigeru I don't have time for this!!" She yelled again but Shigeru just continued to take things out. "SHIGERU!!!!" She screamed and Shigeru flinched. Just then the neighbors who were helping them move came into the room.
"Nanami-chan, you shouldn't yell at your younger brother like that." The lady said and knelt down so she was on Shigeru's eye-level "Are you alright Shigeru-kun?" She asked and patted the young boy's head.
"Nanami-chan.." The man came and approached her but she just looked up at him with tears in her eyes.
"Shigeru, Shigeru, Shigeru!!" Nanami yelled. "He's been stopping me from packing and hasn't even offered to help!! He's just been sitting there holding his stupid Eevui doll and hasn't even cried for Mom and Dad yet!!"
"Shigeru-kun is too young to understand…" The man started to explain but Nanami interrupted him.
"He's too young to understand!! That's his excuse for everything!! He's not the only one who lost his parents!! He's not the one who has to leave all her friends behind!! Why doesn't anyone every take care of me!!" Nanami screamed and ran out of the room and locked her door.
"Nanami-chan!" The lady ran after her and knocked on her door. "Nanami-chan, open up, please! Nanami-chan!"
Throughout all of this Shigeru just hugged his Eevui stronger. "…………Oneechan…" He muttered probably the first words he has said in over two days.
"Youzen, close the window, it is getting cold out." Gyokutei mentioned as he came to the window where his student sat there with a small puppy at the foot of the chair.
"If I do, father may not be able to see me." Youzen replied and Gyokutei looked again at the child with two sheep-like horns on his head. "He won't know where to pick me up."
"Youzen, I will keep watch for you so you can sleep now." Gyokutei managed to say the words that had become almost like a ritual since the young Youkai came to live with him.
"….but……" Youzen didn't want to move. Koutenken whined as Youzen's feet which had been dangling on the long chair accidentally kicked him. "Koutenken!!" Youzen almost screamed when he realized he had kicked the puppy.
"I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm really sorry!!" Youzen continued to apologize and Gyokutei felt his chest start to tighten. Youzen was always so afraid to do the wrong thing, he walked around Kinkadou as though it was made by glass which would shatter any moment, and even in his own room Youzen was very cautious. Gyokutei thought back to the children he had seen back when he was a human, they ran about with carefree abandon, completely different from Youzen's reserved exterior.
"I'm sorry Koutenken, I'm so sorry, sorry.." Youzen was near tears when Gyokutei knelt down and patted his head.
"Koutenken should be fine, you don't have to worry." With that he picked up Youzen. "Come it is getting late and cold, you don't want to get sick now do you." Gyokutei smiled down at Youzen. "Don't worry Youzen, you could stay here as long as you want." Youzen looked down at those words. He understood Gyokutei meant it, but his mother said that she would always be with him and then not too later Youzen was taken into custody of his father. His father also always said how important Youzen was to him and now he was far away from both his parents. He was afraid to believe Gyokutei, what if he did, and he got so used to being here when his Father came to get him. Tears threatened to overflow as Youzen was taken to his room.
Gonou finished to book and went to go put it back on the shelf when he saw the nun's who ran the orphanage and the other orphan's baking cookies. One of the nun's noticed him and walked over to him.
"Gonou, would you like to join us?" She asked with a warm smile. Gonou looked up at her and then at the kid's who were looking at him with eye's that said. 'What? Gonou is going to join us? No way!'
Gonou looked up at the nun and shook his head. His eyes were dull and blank as he did so. The nun looked disappointed but smiled and said.
"Just come over when you feel like it then. Okay?" Gonou nodded but walked away, he thought about trying to smile but he knew it was a useless effort. He toyed instead with the cross that laid on his neck. The only thing he came to the orphanage was this, right after his parent's died him and his sister were given to two different orphanages. "……Kanan….." Gonou called his sister's name as the cross dug into his hand.
"This time I won Marron!!" Miyako smiled triumphantly at the base of the stairs to the apartment building.
"….You don't have to gloat Miyako." Marron replied with a somewhat confused smile.
"Be madder!! Be more annoyed!!!" Miyako screamed but Marron couldn't help herself but smile. This was the Miyako that she was friends with, the Miyako that was there for her whenever and where ever.
"Come on, let's go up and have mom feed us a snack." Miyako sighed and extended her hand to Marron. Marron was always grateful for Miyako. Miyako never questioned Marron about anything, she just accepted it as it was.
"That's fine, I should first get my homework done." Marron replied as they walked into the elevator.
"Marron, you could be so studious at times. Sometimes just relax!!" Miyako exclaimed but Marron shook her head. She couldn't afford to relax, she had to be strong, she had to, and it was the only way she knew how to deal with her life. Deal with the fact that her parents had willingly abandoned her.
"Well, you know where I'll be." Miyako said as they got off the elevator. Suddenly Miyako noticed something. "Oniichan!!" Miyako called happily and ran to her brother. Miyako was the youngest of three children, and she was especially attached to her older brother.
"Miyako, how are you doing?" Yamato asked with a smile. "Hi Marron-chan." He greeted when he saw her and Marron smiled, even though she felt like crying. Ms. Toudaiji practically raised Marron, and Mr. Toudaiji had always remembered her birthday as well as his own children's. Yamato and Sayuri always welcomed Marron with open arms, and Miyako and Marron were sisters in every sense except for that they weren't related. Why can't I be part of the Toudaiji family? Marron wondered but didn't let it show.
"Hello Yamato-san." Marron replied politely.
"Want to come in for some snacks?" Yamato asked her like the gentleman he was.
"I already asked her Oniichan!" Miyako boasted and smiled that she had beaten her brother to it. She was always so competitive.
"I can't, I have to do my homework." Marron smiled and declined the offer.
"Okay, but you should come over after it." Yamato said and Miyako nodded in agreement.
"I really shouldn't." Marron said with a smile. "Nice talking to you Yamato-san, and see you tomorrow Miyako!" Marron waved and walked into her apartment before she broke down and cried in front of the two. She walked over to the answering machine and got the standard 'There are no messages' message and just sat down on the floor. "…Mommy…Daddy…"