Chapter 3:

Chapter 3


Ikkimaru looked down at his phone slightly below the pull out table. He had gotten in contact with three universities from around the world that specialized in paleontology. If he was having Hakama as a house guest he at least wanted to make sure he was taking care of her properly, considering her story of being a dinosaur holds weight. “Pst, hey.” A voice came from beside Ikkimaru, “Hey, Ikkun.” He then jumped as he turned to Ryuko who was leaning into him with a smile,Bookmark here

“You’re not supposed to be on your phone during class.” She whispered,Bookmark here

“Sorry, I’m just doing some research.”Bookmark here

“On what?”Bookmark here

“Oh, uh…just a new pet.”Bookmark here

“Oh really? What’re you getting?”Bookmark here

“Oh, a…uh…” He looked to his phone to see an image of a T-Rex, “A chicken.” He said,Bookmark here

“A chicken?”Bookmark here

“Dumbass…” he said to himself, “Yep, a big ass chicken.”Bookmark here

Ryuko giggled before saying, “You’re very funny.”Bookmark here

“Thanks,” he said with a soft chuckle and a smile,Bookmark here

“Hey, you know the other day on the bus, when you told me about the character in the manga?”Bookmark here

“Yeah?”Bookmark here

“I wanted to ask your advice on something,” Bookmark here

“What is it?”Bookmark here

“It’s about this guy,” she said, “More specifically my ex boyfriend.”Bookmark here

“Oh, uh…”Bookmark here

“He just broke up with me, and I don’t know why. Near the end of our relationship we argued and he became a huge jerk. I wanted to end things with him until I realized how much I love him. Anyways, he then broke up with me and I haven’t been able to think of what it is I did.” Bookmark here

“Oh, uh…well, I mean, I’m not a couples therapist, and uh-“Bookmark here

“Come on, please! You’re the only one I know who likes to figure out why people do things.”Bookmark here

“Well…um, did you want me to meet your boyfriend or-“Bookmark here

“No,” she said, “I was thinking it could be just us, just like one-on-one, I can tell you everything.”Bookmark here

“Oh, uh, okay, when were you thinking-“Bookmark here

“Is tonight okay?”Bookmark here

“Tonight? Uh…yeah,”Bookmark here

“Is over dinner okay? Like, at your place?”Bookmark here

“M-My place?!”Bookmark here

“Yeah, if that’s alright.”Bookmark here

“Oh, uh, yeah, that’s fine.” He said as he cleared his throat,Bookmark here

“Cool, it’s a date.” She said with a smile before she grabbed a pink pen and wrote on the palm of his hand, “Here’s my number, text me your address.”Bookmark here

“Y-Yeah.” Once school let out Ikkimaru ran straight home where he started to tear things apart in order to clean them. Hakama sat on the couch dabbing Zetsuketsu with a cotton swab, “Goddamit! She’s coming over tonight!!! I don’t have anything nice!!!” He then froze as he pulled on his face, “Oh god! I don’t have anything to cook “ Bookmark here

“I can cook,” Hakama said,Bookmark here

“No you can’t!”Bookmark here

“Yes I can,”Bookmark here

“What have you ever cooked in your life?!”Bookmark here

“Miso.”Bookmark here

“That’s not even cooking! That’s just throwing dashi and miso into water!”Bookmark here

“I cooked it.”Bookmark here

“Oh my god…” he said in English as he then placed his hand on the wall and slid down to his knees. “What am I gonna do…?”Bookmark here

“Why do you care so much?”Bookmark here

“Why do I care…?” He said, “Why do I care?!” He then turned and looked her in the eyes and said, “I care because Ryuko is the most beautiful and most popular girl on the entire planet! I’ve been crushing on her since I started going to college!” Bookmark here

“Oh my god you’ve crushed her…?”Bookmark here

“No! I didn’t crush her! I’m crushing on her! That means I like her! I want her to be my girlfriend!”Bookmark here

“Wait, girlfriend? Your grandmother said to get you one of those.”Bookmark here

“Of course she did “ Ikkimaru said as he put his face in his hands and fell to his knees once more, “Hakama I beg of you, when she gets here you need to disappear!”Bookmark here

“Why would I disappear?”Bookmark here

“Because it’s a date! I don’t want you to be here! She’ll think I’m one of THOSE guys!”Bookmark here

“Why can’t you tell her the truth?”Bookmark here

“Do you not know how strange it sounds for a random guy you met to tell you that his grandma sent him a spirit?!?!?!!!”Bookmark here

“Not very strange if you ask me. I’m sure she’ll like it if you tell her the truth.” Bookmark here

“But the truth is so deranged!” He then looked up at her and said, “You’re my sister.”Bookmark here

“No I’m not, I’m your guardian spirit.” Bookmark here

“For tonight you’re my sister.”Bookmark here

“No, tonight I’m your guardian spirit Hakama.”Bookmark here

“No! You’re my sister!”Bookmark here

“I’m Hakama.”Bookmark here

“No!” He stood up and raced over to her and placed his hands on her shoulders, “Please Hakama! If you want to help me get a girlfriend then you HAVE to pretend to be my sister! Please! I will do ANYTHING you ask!” Bookmark here

“Uh…I don’t know,” she said looking away, “Can’t you just be honest with Ryuko.”Bookmark here

“I will! I will be honest with her! Just when the sound of guardian spirits doesn’t sound crazy!”Bookmark here

“It doesn’t sound crazy.”Bookmark here

“YES!!! I KNOW!!!” He snapped before he calmed down and said, “Yes, I get it, I get the concept. However, like with the whole Master thing, in the modern world telling someone you have a guardian spirit makes you sound crazy. You’ll end up in a place where they’ll try and fix you, so all you’ll know is a lie anyways. It’s better to be safe than sorry.”Bookmark here

“I see…” she sighed as she looked down, “When you say it like that it does sound crazy…” tears formed in her eyes as she nearly began to cry, “I don’t want you to not have a girlfriend because of me…” Bookmark here

He placed his hand on the top of her head, “Listen, it’s not that bad. I just want to try and play it safe.” He then smiled and said, “I’ve got an idea, since I’m lying about you, then you get to tell her one lie about me.”Bookmark here

“What…? You want me to lie…?”Bookmark here

“Yeah, I mean, if it makes you feel better.”Bookmark here

“It won’t…! I’ve been honest my whole life…!”Bookmark here

“You’ve never told a story before?”Bookmark here

“W-Well, I-“Bookmark here

“You know what, don’t worry about it, I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to upset you.” He sighed as he stood up and looked around, “Anyways, I’m going to try and go get some food before she gets here.” Bookmark here

“What do you want me to do?”Bookmark here

“Well, put on some of your regular clothes, and maybe do your hair or something.” He then ran to his room before he ran back out with his phone, “And try and clean things if you can, if not then don’t worry about it.” He pulled on a jacket before he then ran out the door. Hakama sighed as she looked around the room. She really didn’t want to clean, she would’ve preferred to go with him to get food. She dabbed Zetsuketsu a few more times before she closed the sword and went to Ikkimaru’s bedroom to change. Bookmark here

About a half hour passed when Ikkimaru suddenly came back through the door with tons of takeout. He shut the door and turned around to see his apartment clean, Hakama stood in the center of the room in a pair of leggings, a shirt, and a hoodie and she wore her hair into a bun on the back of her head. “Woah…” Ikkimaru said as he looked her over just as she held her hands behind her back,Bookmark here

“Welcome home big brother.” Bookmark here

“Wow, this is nice.” He said as he looked around as he set the food on the counter, “I can’t believe how clean you got the place and in such a short time.” Bookmark here

“What did you get to eat?”Bookmark here

“Uh, Teriyaki,” he said as he started to take out the boxes, “Unagi, Unadon, Hibachi Noodles, Beef, Chicken, Takoyaki.”Bookmark here

“The only things I know of those foods are beef and chicken.”Bookmark here

“What?! Are serious?!” He said, “Okay, next time we go out, I’ll take you to the Teppan Grill.”Bookmark here

“Teppan? What’s Teppan?!”Bookmark here

“It’s a Teriyaki restaurant, a Teppan is a grill in the center of the table, and they cool all the food on the grill in front of you before putting it on your plate.” Bookmark here

“That sounds nice,” Bookmark here

“Yeah, it’s amazing.” He said with a smile as he then grabbed a few plates, “My parents took me to one when I turned nine. It was incredible and unforgettable.”Bookmark here

“Sounds like a wonderful time, how old are you now?”Bookmark here

“I’m 22.” He then turned as a knock came from the door, “She’s here!” He said as he raced over to the door. He turned to Hakama and said, “Remember, little sister.” Hakama rolled her eyes as Ikkimaru opened the door for Ryuko, “Hey!”Bookmark here

“Hi!” Ryuko said as Ikkimaru let her in, “It smells good in here.”Bookmark here

“I hope you like takeout.”Bookmark here

“I don’t mind it,” she said before she looked at Hakama, “Oh, who’s this?”Bookmark here

“Oh, this is my little sister.” Ikkimaru said as he walked over to Hakama and wrapped his arm around her, “She’s just staying here for the night, is that okay?”Bookmark here

“Yeah, it’s fine.” Ryuko said with a smile as she walked over to Hakama and held out her hand, “Nice to meet you!”Bookmark here

“Are you challenging me?!” Hakama thought,Bookmark here

“I’m Ryuko, and you are?”Bookmark here

“Hakama,” Bookmark here

“Hakama, that’s such a cute name.”Bookmark here

“Thanks.”Bookmark here

“Anyways, let’s get food served up and have a nice night.” Ikkimaru said as he went to the kitchen, “You’re welcome to sit on the couch.”Bookmark here

“Thanks!” Ryuko said as she walked over to the couch and sat down. Hakama sat on her knees across from Ryuko. “So tell me, what’s your brother like?”Bookmark here

“Hm? Oh, well, he’s alright. He always works hard and he’s tired a lot.”Bookmark here

“What’s he working so hard on that makes him constantly tired?”Bookmark here

“A book!” Ikkimaru said as he quickly spoke before Hakama could answer, “I’m writing a book.” He brought the plates over to the coffee table where he set them down.Bookmark here

“What’s it about?” Ryuko asked,Bookmark here

“Um, it’s mostly about friendship, as well as the bond a young man and young woman have.”Bookmark here

“Wow, I’d love to read it.”Bookmark here

“You’re more than welcome too.” He said as he picked up his plate as well as his chopsticks. Hakama sighed as she looked down at her food. It looked and smelled good, but the fact that Ikkimaru was having her lie for him made her sick. Bookmark here

“So I wanted to ask you something the other day on the bus. When you brought up how that one character could have a reason to hate women, what do you think that reason is?”Bookmark here

“Oh, well, perhaps he had an older sister, and that older sister was very physically abusive to him. That could really hinder his view on women, especially when he’s supposed to love them, and especially since she’s a member of his family. He’d be scared to try and have a woman to go to.”Bookmark here

“And why would his sister be abusive? That seems out of character.”Bookmark here

“Well, I wouldn’t say that.” Ikkimaru said as he cleared his throat, “Something that most people don’t know is that women can be just as abusive as men. If not physically then perhaps emotionally and mentally. We don’t know what causes this, but when people are born we’re all born rather equally. We’re equally as capable of doing anything just as likely as anyone else.”Bookmark here

“I see, and how does it differ from men?”Bookmark here

“Well, at least from what I’ve seen, when men are abusive it’s to inflict pain and create fear. They want to show dominance and that they can’t be beaten. And then for women, while they can be physically abusive, most of their abuse is mental and emotional. A lot of women see men as dumb and narrow minded creatures. So they try to turn and manipulate men more than a man might try to manipulate a woman.” Bookmark here

“Can you inflict fear without being physically aggressive?”Bookmark here

“Theoretically, yes.” Bookmark here

“Wow, that’s cool.” Ryuko then turned to Hakama who had tears in her eyes, “What do you think Hakama?”Bookmark here

“I….I think you should be honest with my brother.” She stood up and turned and looked at Ikkimaru with a glare, “I couldn’t imagine lying for personal gain.” She then turned and walked into Ikkimaru’s bedroom and closed the door.Bookmark here

“Is she okay?” Ryuko asked,Bookmark here

“I don’t know,” Ikkimaru said, “Anyways, what’s the issue with your ex?”Bookmark here

“Yeah, well, about that,” she sighed before she set her plate down, “You know, I’ve noticed you staring at me for a while now.” Ikkimaru blushed heavily suddenly feeling embarrassed, “I didn’t know why, however, I at least wanted to say hi.” She looked at him and said, “There is no ex-boyfriend, but what I wanted to talk to you about does involve a guy.” She hand inched across the couch before it touched his, “I haven’t been able to stop thinking about him since I laid eyes on him. And as soon as we started talking I thought he was the coolest.” Bookmark here

“W-Well, um,” he cleared his throat before he pulled his hand away and said, “M-Maybe we should get to know each other a little better.”Bookmark here

“Yeah, that’s totally fine with me.” Bookmark here

Ikkimaru gave a soft smile before he looked back at his food, “So, what do you do for a job?”Bookmark here

“Well, right now I do homemade chocolates and baked goods for a small store my family owns.”Bookmark here

“You do?” He asked,Bookmark here

“Yeah, I brought some stuff I made with me.” She turned and reached in her purse before she pulled out a small tupperware. She took the took the lid off and held up the container to Ikkimaru, “Here! Try some! I made the chocolate chips myself, they’re dark, white, and milk chocolate chips which are mixed with mint. I handmade the chocolate for the chips myself and then baked the cookies from scratch.”Bookmark here

“Wow, sounds awesome.” He said as he grabbed a cookie and took a bite out of it. “Mmm!” He said as he felt his brain turn to mush from the absolute delight that was making love to his taste buds. “Oh my god…”Bookmark here

“You like them?”Bookmark here

“Like them? These are the best cookies I’ve ever had! The chips are absolutely amazing! I really like the mint, it gives it a nice extra taste to everything else.”Bookmark here

“I’m glad you like them,”Bookmark here

“I love them!”Bookmark here

“Well good,” she closed the container before she continued to eat the food on her plate, “I really love what you made for dinner!”Bookmark here

“It’s my favorite restaurant. My parents took me when I was little, and I could never get the taste out of my mouth.”Bookmark here

“It’s very good, I can’t believe I’ve never been.”Bookmark here

“Huh?! You’ve never been?!”Bookmark here

“Nope,” she said as she swallowed her mouth full of food, “Maybe you can take me sometime?”Bookmark here

“Y-Yeah of course.” Bookmark here

She smiled before she continued to eat. When she finished her plate and he finished his, she rubbed the back of her neck and said, “So, can I ask you something?”Bookmark here

“What is it?” He responded as he started to gather their plates,Bookmark here

“Be honest with me, is that girl really your sister?”Bookmark here

“H-Hakama…?!” He swallowed heavily before he said, “Y-Yeah, she is, I mean, she’s more like a stepsister, but she’s still family.”Bookmark here

“Alright,” she said as she leaned into the couch, “Can you be honest with me about something else?”Bookmark here

“What is it?” He asked as he took the plates to the kitchen,Bookmark here

“Did you write that manga she was reading on the bus?” Bookmark here

Ikkimaru swallowed heavily before he turned and looked at Ryuko. He sighed before he walked over to her and sat beside her, “I did,” he responded, “When you brought up how Chibisuke was a misogynist, I didn’t want you thinking I was one.” He then looked down at his feet as he said, “Listen, I’ve liked you for a long time, okay? And I was a bit worried that it would’ve been a turn off.”Bookmark here

“You’re fine,” she said with a smile, “I think it’s cool that you’re doing a manga. I also think it’s cool that you’re able to see Chibiko differently than he appears on his surface, I can’t wait to see him develop.” Bookmark here

“You mean it?” He asked as he turned and looked at her,Bookmark here

“Yeah,” she said with a smile as she leaned closer to him, “Of course.” She placed her hand on top of his before she placed her other hand on the side of his face and pulled him into a kiss. Ikkimaru’s face turned a bright red. He swallowed nervously before he moved his hand, so that his fingers interlocked with Ryuko’s, and kissed her back. She pulled away from their kiss as she said, “Anyways, it’s getting late, I should probably get going home.”Bookmark here

“You can stay if you want,”Bookmark here

“Yeah, but your sister is here, I don’t want things to be awkward if I end up staying the night.” Bookmark here

“Yeah, okay.” He then stood up and walked her to the door and opened it for her, “I guess, I’ll see you at school.” Bookmark here

“Yeah, I’ll see you.” She said with a smile as she left the apartment. She turned and faced him before saying, “Maybe you can come to my place for our next date night, you can even stay over if you want.”Bookmark here

“Y-Yeah, okay!” He said with a smile as his face turned red,Bookmark here

“Bye,” she said with a wave before she walked off,Bookmark here

“Yeah, bye.” He said as he watched her walk off. He then closed the door and held his hands against it before a grin spread across his face. He started to laugh before saying, “Yes! Yes! Yes!” He then turned around to see Hakama glaring at him with her eyes puffy and red from crying. “H-Hakama, I uh-“Bookmark here

“Listen to me, and listen to me good, Ikki, I never want you to see her again.”Bookmark here

“Wh-What?!”Bookmark here

“You’re not allowed to see her again. I can’t believe you lied about me! I can’t believe you had me LIE for YOU!!! I hate lying!!! Don’t you EVER see her again, do you understand me?!”Bookmark here

Ikkimaru’s heart began to race as his breathing became faster. He then clenched his teeth before he glared at her. He stomped over to her and looked her in the eyes, “You don’t get to tell me what to do!” Bookmark here

“I do, I’m your guardian house spirit! I’m doing what’s best for you!”Bookmark here

“A guardian house spirit?! Really?!” He yelled, “What have you guarded me from?! You showed up and destroyed my coffee maker, you let yourself in, and you invaded my privacy! How is that guarding me?!”Bookmark here

“I’m trying to protect you! You can NEVER be happy with someone that you HAVE to lie to for your own personal gain!”Bookmark here


“What does that have to do with-“Bookmark here

“WHERE WERE YOU WHEN MY PARENTS DIED?!?!?!!!” Ikkimaru screamed as tears streamed from his eyes, “WHY DIDN'T YOU PROTECT THEM BACK THEN HUH?!?!?!!”Bookmark here

“I-I didn’t-“Bookmark here

“Where were you?”Bookmark here

“I-Ikki-“Bookmark here

“WHERE WERE YOU??!?!?!?!!!!!” Ikkimaru said with a forceful shove which caused Hakama to get pushed off balance. Ikkimaru’s eyes widened before he lunged towards her. He caught Hakama before he spun and fell onto the ground with her on top of her. Hakama pushed herself off of him before she huffed and paced back and forth. Ikkimaru slowly sat up as he watched her pace. He sighed as he said, “Hakama, I didn’t mean to push you, at least not that hard.”Bookmark here

“Then what did you mean to do?!” She asked as she spun and looked him in the eyes, “Do you realize what you even made me do tonight?! Do you realize how it made me feel?!” Bookmark here

“It’s just a lie,” Ikkimaru said as he stood up, “Everybody lies.”Bookmark here

“Not me!” Hakama yelled, “I’m supposed to be loyal and honest! And you made me go against that all for some girl!”Bookmark here

“She’s not just some girl, she’s the girl that I like! And I think she likes me too!”Bookmark here

“She likes the fact that you’ve asked me to lie?!”Bookmark here

“I told you why you had to lie! And you said you were fine with it!”Bookmark here

“I did because I thought it would be okay, and maybe a small lie wouldn’t hurt! But the entire time it was eating me up inside!”Bookmark here

“If you don’t like it then leave!!!”Bookmark here

“I can’t leave until I’ve done my job!0Bookmark here

“Then learn to live like a human!” Ikkimaru snapped, “We lie because that’s human nature. We do it to protect others that we love and care about!”Bookmark here

“Did your girlfriend love and care about you when she lied about you?!”Bookmark here

“She-“ he sighed before saying, “She didn’t, lies can be good and bad Hakama. It depends on how you use them.”Bookmark here

“I…” tears formed in her eyes as she shook her hand and rested her palms in her hands, “I never want to lie again!!!” She sobbed. He sighed before he walked over to her and placed his hand on the top of her head as he began to pet her. Bookmark here

“I’m sorry,” he said, “I didn’t think it meant that much to you. How about this? Since you did this big thing for me, I’ll do something nice for you tomorrow.”Bookmark here

“What is it?”Bookmark here

“It’s a surprise, and you’ll have to wear your regular clothes. You also can’t bring your sword.”Bookmark here

“Why can’t I bring Zetsuketsu…?”Bookmark here

“Because…” he then sighed before saying, “You can bring it, just don’t take it out. Ever.”Bookmark here

“But what if-“Bookmark here

“You can’t take it out. It’s still a weapon, and you’ll be arrested.”Bookmark here

Hakama sighed before saying, “Fine…”Bookmark here

“Thanks.”Bookmark here

You can resume reading from this paragraph.