For a moment, all Takashi could do was stop and admire her. The curve of her growing smile; the faint tinge of pink that slowly took over her cheeks; the way stray baby hairs curled around her face. Everything about her was so uniquely her, and it was beautiful. She was beautiful. And he didn’t think he would ever get over the fact. He seemed to still be taken by surprise every time he saw her, even then, after all of their time together. “It’s good to see you too,” he said softly, arms going around her middle protectively, holding her close to him as she stroked his face. And it was. It really, really was. If he could see her every single day for the rest of his life, he would, and he would be happy. Even if they had nothing else to their names, he would be happy as long as she was with him. And he sort of guessed that was what real love was about.
“I love you too,” he whispered to her, ducking his head so that his forehead rested against hers. “So very much.” He stood that way for a moment, just breathing easy with her, before lifting his head again and turning his attention to the basket she’d set down. “Heeeey,” he began, tilting his head and giving her a tiny pout. “I said you didn’t have to make anything. I have all of the bases covered.” He had expected she’d bring something regardless, but he’d hoped she wouldn’t. He wanted to treat her completely for once. But, that would be for another day. Not that he was complaining, though. She did have quite the knack for cooking. “What did you bring?”
When Takashi turned his gaze onto her little container of muffins, Kotomi’s blush darkened a bit. She was hoping he would ignore her little gift and just take it. Not that he was mad at her or anything… But still… She ducked out of his arms and picked up her goodies so she could show him. “I know… I know… But I couldn’t help myself. I would have felt bad making you do all the work. I wanted to contribute just a little bit…” She wished she had made more to bring over, but she didn’t want to ruin Takashi’s chance to make breakfast. Perhaps another time…
With a smile, she returned to her boyfriend and opened the lid, holding up the container up for him to see. “Blueberries muffins,” she chirped proudly. “There was a small blueberry bush that was growing in Mom and Dad’s garden out back. They were nice and ripe, so I figured now was a good time to put them to use.” She closed the lid again and pushed herself up on her tiptoes to kiss Takashi’s cheek. Her eyes sparkled with excitement and she slipped her hand into his once more. “Judging by the way the house smells though… I think the question that should be asked is, what didn’t you make?” She couldn’t wait to see what was waiting for them in the kitchen. She was sure Takashi went above and beyond…
“Have you finished cleaning?” Takashi asked, flipping pancake after pancake onto a wide plate beside the stove. He knew he was making enough food for a small army, but he wanted his beloved to have variety. And, he wanted to cover all of the staple breakfast foods. Everything had to be perfect. There was no other option.
“Yeah, I got it,” Satoshi replied, drying his freshly washed arm with a paper towel. It had been a bit hard to clean the table between plates, since the batter on the whisk had gone all over, but he’d managed. And he was ready to eat. “Can we—?”
“No,” was the immediate reply. There would have been more, but there was a small knock at the door, and Takashi didn’t want to waste another second on his brother.
Quickly turning off the flame on the stove, Takashi set the plate of pancakes onto their designated spot on the table, and wiped his hands off on the apron. “I know where everything is. Touch before I get back, and we will duel.” He muttered to the younger male, before stepping out, heading towards the door. His heart was racing a bit, but that was normal. Even after all this time, he still got excited about her presence. It was just one of those things he hoped never faded. “So you are…” He made it to the door just in time to catch her closing it behind her.
“We left it open for you,” he said softly, extending a hand to her. “Good morning, Kotomi-chan.”
The sound of Takashi’s voice behind her made the smile on Kotomi’s face widen and her heart leap with excitement. She spun around and their eyes met. A light blush rose to her cheeks and she shyly, as if they hadn’t known each other for so long, reached her hands out and placed it in his. She took a few steps, bringing herself closer to him, before stopping and setting the container of muffins on the floor. Once her other hand was free, she gave a small bounce on her toes, then threw her arms around Takashi’s neck, hugging him tightly.
A soft, content sigh slipped past her lips and she lovingly nuzzled against him. “Takashi…” she murmured, reveling in the feeling of his body against hers. Love and adoration for the man bubbled up in her tummy and quickly shot through her entire body. She raised her face to look at him again and lifted a hand to touch it to his cheek. “Takashi… It’s so good to see you…” As it always was. It was impossible to be upset around Takashi… “I love you…”
"Taka bro! What are you doing in that? You look like Mom!”
Takashi’s head snapped up, eyes narrowing immediately. “Is there a problem, Satoshi?” He all but snapped, turning around so quickly that the bowl in his hand almost slipped out. He had been hard at work on the “perfect breakfast” for his beloved Kotomi, fully focused on the pancake batter he’d been mixing, when his brother had to go and interrupt. “Do you need something?” He demanded, staring down the younger Morinozuka. He started stirring again, gaze never leaving the other male.
“Woah, calm down there,” Satoshi said quickly, hands raising in defeat. “I was just joking. Please don’t hurt me!” He made his way over to the kitchen table, which was already piled up with breakfast foods, and took a seat, eager to be out of his brother’s line of sight. “Mom said you were cooking breakfast, and I wanted to see if it was true.”
“And?” Takashi asked, a single brow raising.
“And— she was right.” The younger Morinozuka finished. “So…when do we eat?” He reached out for a bagel across the table.
Before he could get close enough, Takashi’s whisk flew out, effectively hitting his hand away and smearing batter over his arm.
“Does it look like Kotomi is here?” Takashi asked, watching Satoshi wave off his pained hand. “No. Do not touch.” He turned away then, beginning to pour the smooth mixture out onto a pan. “You must work for your breakfast, anyway. Clean up that mess or you eat nothing.”
As Kotomi made her way to the Morinozuka household, she held a small container close to her chest, being careful not to drop it. She had woken up earlier than usual in order to make blueberry muffins for her boyfriend and his family. Hopefully they turned out good enough… A wide smile was stretched across her face, and there was nothing she could think of that could make the smile disappear. She had been looking forward to this morning since the initial plans had been made, and now… Now it was finally here!
It didn’t take long for her to reach the house. And, as she usually fond herself doing, Kotomi took a moment to just stare and marvel at the beautiful home. She ran one hand over the skirt of her dress, smoothing it out. She wanted to look her best for Takashi. She always wanted to look her best for him. And, of course, if she was going to be around his family, she wanted to dress to impress. She wanted Takashi’s family to like her, so every little thing counted…
Once she was sure she was ready, the young woman knocked on the door, not loud enough to be obnoxious, but enough to be heard, to make her presence known. Then, she slowly pushed the door open and slipped inside. “Good morning…” she called softly, remaining by the door until she was properly welcomed into the house. “I’m here…” The house smelled amazing, and it was making Kotomi’s stomach rumble and her mouth water already.
Takashi’s blush returned with gusto at her comment of being his wife, and he let out a little string of embarrassed coughs. “O-oh, right. Yes… But you are already — I mean to say, you would be a wonderful wife regardless of you knowing how to make my favorite foods or not… That little thing would not, could not, determine anything…” He didn’t know why he was explaining that, but he felt it necessary. “If you wouldn’t mind, though — truly wouldn’t mind — I would love to have something made by your own hands…”
The smile that bloomed across Kotomi’s face was most likely the biggest she’s ever worn. The fact that he had agreed to let her cook for him, coupled with his comment on her being a wonderful wife… It filled her with a happiness she had never felt before. Warmth spread through her body and without thinking about it first, she threw herself at Takashi, wrapping her arms around his middle. “Thank you!” she chirped happily. “I promise it will be the best meal ever! What would you like to eat? I’ll make anything!”
“O-oh. I couldn’t ask you to make something. I don’t want to burden you with all the work,” he told her, shaking his head slightly. “We can dine out. Your favorite restaurant perhaps?”
"I really wouldn’t mind though!" Kotomi assured him, her eyes lighting up a bit. She actually really liked the idea of being able to cook for him. "I would love to learn to make all your favorite foods! And besides… If I ever want to be a good wife to you…" Her blush deepened and she became quieter again. "But if you really want to go out…" She offered him a sweet smile. "Then that’s alright too. I will be happy just being with you…"
"Ah… Yes… As a matter of fact, anon… We are still together…"
“Oh, no! It is nothing to apologize over. I was merely making a note to pay more attention to my surroundings. I should have felt your arrival…” He walked over to her then, reaching out to catch her moving hands in his. “I would love to have a meal with you, if you are willing to have me.”
Kotomi lifted her head again when she felt his hand on hers. Slowly, she raised her eyes to meet his, her blush deepening a bit. “I’m always happy to have you, Takashi…” she said, voice just above a whisper. A smile graced her lips and she gave a small nod of his head. “Were you craving anything? Did you want to eat out, or would you like a home cooked meal? I would be happy to make us something.”
“Oh, Kotomi— I didn’t see you there,” he said, turning his face a bit to hide his small blush. “If you would like me to, I would like to.”
"I’m sorry…" Kotomi replied in a small voice, her cheeks a little pink as well. "I didn’t mean to sneak up on you… I was going to announce myself but then I heard you say you were hungry and…" She trailed off, looking down and running her hands over her skirt.
"Takashi…? Would you like to have lunch with me then…?"