This is the second part of my novel, click the link to read the first part

Part II

I turn around to my bed, the futon. On the top of it there is the yukata carefully folded. I lift it up and scope it´s beautiful cherry blossom pattern, delicate pink cherry blossoms falling down on the light blue background. I take off my cowl, then I take off my sword and set it on the floor, finally I take off my dark blue costume and change it to the yukata. I look at my sword laying on the floor in it´s scabbard, how much does Mr. Shimizu know about me? I slide the sword under my blanket, not because I thought that Mr. Shimizu would take it, no, I trust him but it is not hard for other people to get in here too. I open up my bun and comb my hair, the night wind blows in to the room making my hair swing lightly. The smell of the wind is fresh and light, it smells like a night of early spring.


I slide the shōji open and walk through the corridor on it´s tatami* floor while looking at the paintings on the walls, their themes vary a lot but the still look good together. Then my eyes move to the hearty ceiling made of dark brown wood, this house might have a second floor, at least I think it looked slightly taller from outside than one floored house would. I realise that I don´t actually know where I should go, I look around, most of the shōjis are closed. Then my eye meets one that´s slightly open and there is light coming from behind it, I walk to it and look in. Mr. Shimizu immediately notices me and smiles “Come in!”


I sit on a pillow that is opposite him, between us there is a table with food and tea on top of it. “I see that you trust me, thank you,” Mr. Shimizu says looking into my eyes. Now I notice properly for the first time what he looks like, dark brown, almost black eyes that are filled with warmth but they are still sharp, ink black hair that swings as he moves his head, pretty pale skin and delicate facial features. He keeps talking as he sees my slight conferment from his words “You didn´t take your sword or any other types of weapons with you here.” “You seem to notice everything, you are focused, it´s very good. And I indeed do trust you,” I answer. “I trust you too. I know who you are, what are you doing and why you are here. I used to be like you but I realised helping people like us would be more suitable for me. You can stay here as long as you want to, I´ll do my best to help you and I promise that you can trust me, and when I promise something I really mean it,” he answers with a warm smile on his face, I smile back as I say “I believe, thank you!” “Now, let´s eat!” he says.


Mr. Shimizu had prepared a delicious dinner, lots of fish, rice, vegetables and to drink good green tea. As we eat he starts talking again “Did you notice the dragon painting?” “I did, it´s very beautiful, I admired it for a long time,” I answer. “Of course the garden view is beautiful but the painting is actually the reason I chose that room for you, do you know why?” he says as he finishes eating the fish that he had in his mouth, “No… I don´t” I answer. “It reminds me of you, smart, strong and beautiful,” he smiles looking deep into my eyes. I feel bright red blush raising on my cheeks, “Thank you so much!” I say as I breathe out of surprisement from the sudden compliment. “You are welcome,” he smiles kindly. 


The house is slightly cold, but the kind compliment and the hot tea are warming me up from the inside although they can´t stop the feeling of cold on my skin. “Are you feeling cold?” Mr. Shimizu asks concerned look on his face as he notices that I´m shivering a bit. “To be honest, I feel a little cold” I answer. “I will bring you a blanket!” he says and almost jumps up from the pillow he was sitting on. “I´m fine, you don´t have to…” I start but he has already left the room. He´s back in no time “Here,” he says and hands me a soft blanket, “Thank you!” I smile to him. I wrap the blanket around myself and watch Mr. Shimizu sit back on his place, he notices me staring and smirks at me. He sits down and looks into my eyes with confidence, after about ten seconds trying to look somewhere else I dare to look back to his eyes, then we just sit there for many minutes in silence looking to each other´s eyes, somehow it doesn't feel awkward. 


“I´ll let you go to sleep now if you want to, and feel free to wake up whenever you want to, I´ll make breakfast but you don't have to hurry because of it,” He says. “Okay, I will go. Thank you for the delicious dinner!” I answer. Then we bow and wish good night to each other smiling. We smile to each other one more time before I leave the room, then I grab the blanket and walk back to my room. 

Part three coming soon!

* Traditional Japanese flooring material.

- Sara Kauppila

The featured image is not taken by me, it´s taken by another one of my parents.

Published by Sara Kauppila