A Little Sister's Feelings
The miscarriage treatment done, and Keiko's womb barren once again, Keiko and Nana went back to the lobby, where Ryo and Chloe were waiting for them.
"You okay?" Nana asked. Keiko had been massaging her lower stomach since they left the room
"Mom, I just had my cervix forced open, and kept that way for more an hour. All to remove a dead embryo. How do you think I feel right now?" Keiko asked with one hand rubbing her lower belly
"Your cervix is killing you?"
"The pain will subside overnight, and your cervix will go back to normal over the next few days. Until your body registers that it's no longer pregnant, you may still experience Mammoplasia or Galactorrhea, which should end on it's own. You may experience menstrual like cramps for a day or so afterwards and then light bleeding for one to two weeks. If so contact me an I'll see what I can do." said Ushio, who was walking beside them. Ayaka had gone back to her own office. "Everyone's different, but it should take about ten or twelve days for your menstrual cycle to resume as well. Until then, just get some rest. Also, don’t use vaginal medications, douche, swim, or have sex for a few weeks until after the bleeding stops."
"Right." Keiko replied
"Speaking of Galactorrhea," said Nana "You actually produced some Witch's Milk for the first couple months after you were born."
"Witch's milk, or neonatal milk, is natural lactation of milk by the breasts of newborn infants of either sex." Ushio explained "Neonatal milk secretion is considered a normal physiological occurrence and no treatment or testing is necessary. It only occurs in about 5% of newborns."
"It can persist into childhood, but you only lasted two months." said Nana
"I see." Keiko repeated
"Kei-chan/Keiko!" exclaimed a pair of voices once they reentered the lobby. It was Yuki and Miki.
"What are you two doing here?" Keiko asked as they ran into them
"We heard from Koichi-kun." said Yuki "He said you had a 'baby in your belly'. Are you really pregnant?"
"Is Saito-kun the father?" Miki asked
"Slow down, you two." said Chloe, with a hand on their shoulders "What happened?"
"Is Kei-nee okay? That was a lot of blood." said Ryo
"Blood?" Yuki and Miki said in unison
"I had a miscarriage." Keiko told them "I just went through the treatment. I'm not pregnant anymore."
"So it was a miscarriage." said Yuki, falling to her knees in relief
"And here I was thinking you'd have to quit the team again." said Miki
"So... I'm not gonna be an auntie? Kei-nee's not gonna be a mom?" said Ryo
"Not just yet." Nana told her while patting Ryo's head
"Oh well... maybe in a few years." said Chloe
"Don't joke about that!" said Keiko
The group then left the hospital;
"By the way, where's Suzuka?" Keiko asked as they left "Isn't she usually with you, Miki?"
"She couldn't get off work." Miki replied
"What do you think of Keiko?" Nana asked Ushio as they let the kids walk ahead for a bit. Ushio couldn't leave the hospital since she was still on shift "As a... potential daughter-in-law?"
"I do approve of her, and I know my Saito loves her." Ushio replied "I can see that she's a good girl. She'd make a great wife for him."
"Except for the fact that she can't cook."
"Neither can I. (hehehehe)"
"I must say that I also approve of Saito." said Nana "He's a little perverted, but he's a good boy. Kakeru and I both think very highly of him. He'd make a great husband for Keiko. He'd be a great son-in-law. Those two belong together if you ask me."
"Agreed." Ushio replied.
"Also, after this incident, having you in the family might be a good thing."
"Double agreed." Just then, Ushio receive a text from a fellow Obstetrician "Mai-chan's baby is a boy."
"Great." Nana replied dully
"I'm aware of who the father is. I know it's difficult, but can't you let it go?"
"Anyway," Ushio held up her smartphone "Would you mind."
"Not at all." and the pair of them exchanged numbers and e-mails "Here's Kakeru's number and e-mail as well."
"Thanks. Give mine to him when you get home." said Ushio
"Will do. See ya later."
Later at the Aizawa house that evening;
After resting in her room since she got home, Keiko woke up at around 7:30 to go to the bathroom. On her way back, she noticed the living room's lights on, and that there were a couple extra pairs of shoes near the front door. She went down to the living room the see what was going on and opened it a crack. What she saw bewildered her; Saito was on his hands and knees with his head bowed in front of Kakeru by the table. Ushio seemed to be present as well.
"Sumimasen! Sumimasen! Sumimasen! Sumimasen!" Saito said to Kakeru over and over
"Now now, you don't need to be this apologetic, son." said Kakeru
"Saito-kun, please raise your head." said Nana
"After what I did, I have no right to." said Saito
Unable to watch this anymore, and wishing to know what this was about, Keiko opened the door.
"What's going on here?" Keiko asked
"KEIKO-CHAN!" Saito wailed, throwing himself around Keiko's waist
"Saito, what are you...?"
"Keiko-chan, I'm sorry! I'm sorry I caused you such problems." said Saito "Even though a baby is supposed to be a blessing, my carelessness put your dreams in danger."
"You told him?" Keiko asked Ushio
"I felt he had a right to know." Ushio replied
"And you in there, little one," Saito was now talking into Keiko's belly "even though you chose us as your parents, I cause your mommy such trouble."
"You didn't tell him everything?" Keiko asked
"I tried to. But the instant I told him he got you pregnant, this boy came rushing over here to apologize without hearing it." Ushio explained, making Saito confused
Everyone sat down at the table and explained the miscarriage to Saito.
"So... you're not pregnant anymore?" said Saito
"That's correct." Keiko replied "No need to explain the ectopic pregnancy part. It'll just make him worry more." Keiko thought
"Nevertheless, I'm so sorry for my carelessness."
"Stop apologizing!" Keiko snapped, and Saito silenced himself "Saito, look, you and I were both careless. I'm just as much at fault."
"No one's angry, and this whole mess is behind us." said Kakeru
"Just... try to be a little more careful from now on, you two." said Ushio
"Hai, Mom." said Saito
"By the way, Keiko-chan."
"I just noticed that ring on your finger. Did Saito give you that?"
"Y-yes, he did." Keiko confirmed, covering her ring with one hand "Why do you ask?"
"I just wanted to know when the wedding is." said Ushio
"HUUUUUUUH!?" Keiko and Saito exclaimed
"Will it be Japanese traditional, or western style?" Nana asked
"How 'bout a western one on a soccer pitch." said Kakeru "And have a soccer game as the after party."
"We're not getting married." Keiko and Saito said in unison
"Not yet anyway." Keiko thought
"Alright, alright. Just thought we'd tease you a bit." said Ushio
"I still feel bad about this incident though. After this, I'll understand if you don't want to live with me anymore."
"Baka." said Keiko, flicking Saito's forehead "It's gonna take way more than this little incident for me to stop loving you."
"Now hold it!" said Kakeru, making the couple flinch
"What's this about you two living together?" Nana asked
"I knew Saito was going to move out, but this is the first I'm hearing of this." said Ushio
"Well..." said Saito as he and Keiko grinned and blushed embarrassed "When we got back together, I told Keiko-chan that I was going to move, and I asked her to come with me."
"I said 'yes', of course." said Keiko
"So that means...?" said Nana
"We haven't found a place yet. But once we do, I'll be moving out to live with Saito. If you'll allow it."
"You're leaving?" said Ryo, who just appeared in the doorway, a look of shock on her face
"You're leaving us behind?" said Ryo
"W-wait, Ryo. I can explai-" but before Keiko could finish, Ryo ran to her room, tears streaming from her eyes "Smooth move, Keiko." Keiko said to herself
"What was that all about?" Ushio asked
"Now we know why you kept it secret until now." said Nana
"Yeah. I knew Ryo wouldn't like it." said Keiko "But she had to find out like that. Damn it all."
Two days later, Saturday July 24;
Suzuka woke up to the ringing of her phone in her apartment
"Moshimoshi." Suzuka said sleepily as she answered her phone
"Suzuka? It's me." said Keiko
"Keiko? It's early. And I have work in a couple hours."
"Then you should thank me for waking you."
"Maybe you're right." Suzuka got up, yawned, and started making breakfast as she continued talking to Keiko "So, what do you want this early?"
"You don't need to sound so cold."
"You don't work Sunday, which is tomorrow, right?"
"Saito's still feeling bad about the whole pregnancy issue. So I told him that he can make up for it by taking me shopping tomorrow."
"And you're inviting me to come along as well?" Suzuka asked as she applied seasoning to her breakfast
"Hai. Oh, and Miki's invited too. Can you pass word to her as well?"
"Sure thing. Anything else?"
"N-yeah." Keiko said awkwardly "It's Ryo."
"She avoiding you?"
"Ever since she learned I'm moving out."
"I was surprised to hear about it too."
"Hiroki and Koichi weren't too happy either, but at least they were a bit more mature about it and accepted that I wanted to leave. So.... I was thinking. Since Ryo won't talk to me... could you... say something to her?"
"Why me? She's your sister."
"But she won't listen to me! She probably feels betrayed by the fact that I'm leaving. I did keep it secret after all. So... could you talk to her, one little sister to another."
"(sigh) I'll come shopping tomorrow, but I can't promise anything about your sister." Suzuka hung up at that "'One little sister to another', huh?"
Later at Suzuka's work;
"That's one Big Mac with a shake." Suzuka told the customer as she handed him his order "That'll be ¥1300."
"Thank you very much." said the customer
"That seems to be the last customer for a while." said the Manager, Tomoya Furukawa
"Sure it's slow today." said Suzuka. Indeed the McDonald's was nearly empty, even though it was lunch hour
"Lots of students from the nearby schools come here for lunch." said one of Suzuka's co-workers "But once Summer and Winter break sets in..."
"I know, Kiyoshi-kun. I'm still a student too."
"Welcome!" Kiyoshi said to the customer who just walked in. It was Ryo.
"Ryo-chan?" said Suzuka
"Suzu-nee? You work here?" Ryo inquired
"Since when does she call me that?" Suzuka thought.
"You know her?" Tomoya asked
"She's a middle schooler, and the younger sister of one of my first year kohai's on the soccer team." Suzuka explained before turning back to Ryo "But, Ryo-chan, what are you doing here alone?"
"Most of my friends are out of town with their families, and I just couldn't sit at home right now." said Ryo
"You mean you don't want to be around Keiko right now."
"This is just the first place I walked into. Anyway, sorry for disturbing your work."
"W-wait! At least order.... something." said Kiyoshi, but Ryo was already out the door
"She's as stubborn as her sister. And she doesn't really like guys." said Suzuka "And it looks like she's even avoiding me, just because I'm close to Keiko."
Just then, Suzuka noticed someone suspicious emerge from behind a pole and walk in Ryo's direction. The sight of him gave her a bad vibe.
"Something wrong, Akitsuki?" Tomoya asked
"I'll be right back." Suzuka replied and left the shop, following the character.
As Suzuka walked a fair distance behind the guy, she noticed he seemed to be getting closer and closer to Ryo. Finally, as Ryo walked past an alley, and the guy, already just four feet behind Ryo, grabbed Ryo and pulled her into the alleyway. Suzuka sprinted after them. When she reached them, the guy, covering Ryo's mouth with one hand, had already pulled up her shirt and bra and was sticking his hand in her panties.
"Stop right there you pervert!" Suzuka yelled, sprinting at them and punching the guy in the face.
As Suzuka helped Ryo get her clothes right, a passing officer, having heard Suzuka's yell, appeared and chased after the molester. Suzuka then took Ryo back to McDonald's.
"Here, have a chocolate shake, on the house." said Tomoya, handing Ryo a shake, which Ryo eagerly started sipping
"I'm such an unlucky girl." said Ryo after a minute "I'm always attracting unwanted looks from men."
"Well you're pretty well-endowed, and you have a cute face. Getting hit on by guys is pretty natural, but by a stalking perv... that's pretty unlucky indeed." said Kiyoshi, causing Ryo to start crying
"You are so tactless! Was that supposed to help?" Suzuka asked angrily, grabbing the front of Kiyoshi's uniform "This is the little sister of one of my closest friends."
"Let's leave them be, Kiyoshi-kun." said Tomoya, and he and Kiyoshi left them alone at the table
Suzuka sat next to Ryo and rubbed her back comfortingly. "There, there." said Suzuka "I know Kiyoshi can be insensitive, but it's nothing to cry over."
"Thank you for saving me. Again." Ryo replied
"Oh, right. I did save you from a perv once before. But that wasn't me alone ya know." Suzuka said modestly
"I was so scared. I couldn't move. This is the second time something like that happened. He actually managed to stick his finger in me. I thought I was gonna be... I though he was going to...."
"I know. Getting raped, not a good way to lose your virginity."
"It hurt so much the first time! I thought I was gonna break in two."
"I know that feeling all too well. Courtesy of my ex-father." Suzuka thought
"Again, thank you for saving me." said Ryo
"No problem." said Suzuka "But enough of the dreary talk. There's something I want to talk to you about."
"What is it?" Ryo asked
"You've been avoiding Keiko."
"Oh. That." Ryo said awkwardly
"Look, I know finding out she was moving out was hard to take, but you need to face her at the very least."
"I just... don't understand. Why is she leaving me?"
"Why do you think she's leaving you?" Suzuka asked, but Ryo didn't answer "Ryo-chan?"
"I'm sorry. I just... have... a bit of a... sister complex."
"You're really close to her, aren't you? Being a little sister myself, I can kinda understand how you feel."
"I really don't know who I'm close to anymore. For some time now I've felt really out of place with my family." Ryo explained "Koichi's not exactly social in the house. Chloe-san's a guest. Kei-nee has Saito-nii. Hiroki has Saki-chan. And it's not easy to talk to Mama and Papa. I feel like an outsider. So I ask, why is Kei-nee leaving?"
"Ryo-chan. Have you ever been in love?" Suzuka asked
"Not really." Ryo replied, confused at the question "I haven't really been comfortable around guys much lately."
"Well, let me tell you. A couple in love, they can come to love each other so much, that they want to be with each other all the time." Suzuka explained "Going out to play together is a whole 'nother thing. I know it seems selfish of Keiko to want to leave the house, but she's growing up, and she's in love. When it comes to the person you love, you somethimes have to be selfish. Put yourself in her place. If you were dating someone you love and hold dear to you, what would you want to do?"
Ryo thought about it, then said "I'd want to be with that person all the time. I know that, but she..."
"Listen. Just because she wants to live with Saito-kun, doesn't mean she doesn't hold you dear to her anymore. She loves you, snd she really cares about you. And I know she still holds a place in her heart for you. She's been really worried about you too." Ryo was so stunned she didn't know what to say.
"I need to apologize to her." Ryo said at last
"Well said. Come on, I'll walk you home."
Suzuka, with permission to leave from Tomoya, took Ryo home. As soon as they opened the door, they saw Keiko sitting there getting her shoes on.
"Ryo? Suzuka?" said Keiko when she saw them
"Hi." said Suzuka "I saved Ryo-chan from a stalker, had a chat with her, then brought her home."
"A stalker?!" Keiko cried, then grabbing Ryo's shoulders "Are you okay? Did he hurt you?"
"It's okay. Suzu-nee saved me before he could do anything."
"Anytime." Suzuka replied as Keiko hugged Ryo
"Um... Kei-nee. About you moving out." said Ryo
"Ryo, I'm sorry." said Keiko "I should've told you right away that I wanted to live with Saito."
"It's okay. You love Saito-nii. I knew that. Yet I...."
"I'm sorry!" both girls cried, hugging each other tightly
"My work is done." Suzuka thought as she closed the door and began walking back to work. "The bond between those two is unbreakable. No matter how far apart they become, they'll be as close as two sisters can get. I guess couples in love aren't the only ones whose hearts can be in sync. Did Hibiki and I ever have bond that strong?"