A date between Kaos and Ruki.
“Kaos-chan, do you want to go on a date next Sunday?”, asked Ruki.
It was another sunny day as the four mangaka were eating peacefully on the roof. Kaos was, as always, savoring her carefully crafted lunch. The dorm mother generally prepared food for the four of them but she had to be careful with Kaos given how picky the girl was. The question came as her chopsticks were doing their best not to let the sausage she was eating fall to the ground. Given how unprepared she was to hear such a thing, it fell anyway.
Kaos was uncharacteristically stoic as she said that. To an outside observer, it might seem that she wasn’t all that interested, with a simple, soft smile and relatively little emotion in her voice. This was, of course, no more than an attempt to maintain even the slightest semblance of composure.
A date? I know we’re dating now but an actual date? Does Ruki-san really think we’re ready for that? Alright, I can do this, let’s play it cool.
“What sort of date, Ruki-san? I, personally, believe that somewhere along the lines of an aquarium would be nice. Or perhaps, a nice stroll through the park.”
“Kaos-chan, please don’t act like that,” said Ruki. “Remember what I told you about being honest with your feelings?”
Koyume laughed at the situation, “she’s right, Kaos-chan, it’s kinda creepy.”
“C-creepy? I was just acting mature!”
This time, everyone laughed. Kaos’s face grew more and more flustered — it was a bit sad, though it was also very cute, especially to Ruki.
“Don’t worry Kaos-chan, I just thought we could go out and enjoy ourselves together. There’s plenty of things that both of us like to do.”
While she’d initially been laughing, Ruki’s smile became a lot softer as she attempted to calm her girlfriend down. She’d had a feeling this wouldn’t go as simply as in manga. Perhaps she’d been reading the wrong series if she wanted to predict Kaos’ actions.
Tsubasa brought her head up, putting down her sketchbook for the first time in what seemed like twenty minutes, “Just pick places each of you like to go and visit all of them. Your deadlines aren’t for a while are they, Rukki?”
She nodded, pleased that Tsubasa remembered something like that.
“And you obviously don’t have any deadlines coming up, Kaos-chan”.
Ruki was a bit less happy to hear Tsubasa say that but all of them knew it was true, so aside from Kaos’ slightly hurt expression and Koyume’s subtle laugh, they simply moved on. Everyone understood that it came from a desire to see Kaos improve, after all.
The bell rang and they began to get back to class. The two girlfriends knew they had to decide where to go in the next two days and both of them already had some ideas.
At 9 am on a Sunday Morning, it wasn’t particularly as sunny as Ruki would’ve hoped but the clouds didn’t look as if they’d rain, at least. Kaos had been a bit slow to get up after obviously staying up too late to work on her drawing once again. It caused Ruki some mixed feelings; she was happy to see the girl try so hard but at the same time, she couldn’t exactly encourage such unhealthy practices. Regardless, Kaos’ excitement for the day’s date won out in the end, as she quickly snapped out of bed once the coming event fully dawned on her.
The dorm mother had been kind enough to gift the two of them with tickets to the amusement park. As Ruki thought about it, she remembered that she’d done the same for Tsubasa and Koyume that one time. If she weren’t so preoccupied with how cute Kaos was, the question of how and why she had so many of them would’ve stood out a lot more to her.
As they stood right outside the park, Ruki looked over at Kaos once again. At first, her eyes were drawn to the adorable, red, one-piece dress that she hadn’t been able to take her eyes off of since seeing her put it on for the first time. The second thing she noticed was that the girl was a bit nervous.
“Are there too many people? We don’t have to enter if you don’t want to. We didn’t even pay for these, after all.”
“No, I can do this, I was fine when we came to watch Tsubasa-san and Koyume-chan after all!”
Her voice carried a level of determination that Ruki wasn’t going to challenge, even if she was still worried about her girlfriend’s chances of surviving a place like this.
She had been right to worry.
Kaos walked off the rollercoaster terrified, tears streaming down her face. This was almost as bad as when she’d first met Fuura. Fortunately, Ruki was able to hold her hand and bring her off to the side as quickly as she could. She had enjoyed the ride and would’ve liked to go on more but Kaos’ feelings took priority in this situation.
“There, there.” Being patted on the head was perhaps a bit patronizing but Kaos certainly enjoyed it, especially at times like this. “Are you feeling better now? Do you want to go somewhere a bit more familiar?”
“Well, I’m certainly not opposed, but are you sure you want us to go there? Aren’t there a bit too many people?”
“It’s fine, I wanna go.”
Her sentences were unusually short and to the point. It was somewhat cute to Ruki, though her sympathy for the girl was far more prominent at the moment.
Ruki sat up from the bench they were sitting on, pulling Kaos’ hand with her as she did so. She knew that the girl wasn’t exactly in a position to lead right now, even if she knew exactly where she wanted to go. To be honest, Ruki wasn’t eager to visit Akiba right now, as her last trip to the district hadn’t exactly ended great. Still, she wanted Kaos to be as happy as possible, so she could certainly handle a short visit to the place.
As they left the station, stepping onto Akiba’s streets, Kaos finally perked up. Spending so much time so close to Ruki hadn’t done much to calm her down, though the reason behind her intense emotions had certainly changed. Seeing all the cute girls she loved so much was able to distract her from the fact that her girlfriend’s touch was enthralling, if only for a little bit.
Immediately, Kaos began to run from store to store. Given how many manga the girl read, it was of little surprise that new volumes of the series she kept up with were on-sale.
Ruki, meanwhile, felt somewhat awkward, standing off to the side. She had manga she liked as well, of course, and had she been in the mood she likely would’ve spent some time looking at them. But there was a bit of a dilemma. Since Kaos had taught her how to use a computer, she’d begun to buy her manga on there, especially since it let her read reference material that she may, as a high-schooler, not be allowed to purchase in stores. A few of those manga had incredibly captivating stories, to the point she was able to take some tips from them, but she couldn’t exactly buy stuff like that here.
And that’s not to mention the fact that her last visit to this store had ended in her almost being discovered as the author of the manga she drew. She had obviously grown much more comfortable in admitting who she was now but that didn’t prevent her from feeling a bit on edge, so she wasn’t having a ton of fun.
Kaos continued to look around at an almost absurd pace, dodging other customers left and right, muttering to herself all the while.
“Ooooh, this looks interesting, I think I read about it on X-san’s blog!”
She felt so comfortable in a place like this and was happy to be here after the disaster that was the amusement park. She wished she had chosen a place that both people enjoyed earlier on.
As Kaos looked over at Ruki after getting everything she wanted in that section, she realized that her girlfriend didn’t look like she was having a good time. In fact, she looked downright bored, perhaps even uncomfortable. She was tapping her foot and finger in sync with a somewhat spacey, pained look on her face. Kaos’ smile dropped as she ran over to find out what was going on.
“What’s wrong, Ruki-san? Do you not enjoy being here? I thought you’d like it since you love manga so much but I guess I really don’t understand what high school girls like to do,” her voice was beginning to trail off. “If only I hadn’t gotten so scared at the park earlier…”
Ruki didn’t feel excellent but Kaos was clearly growing more and more distraught as she blamed herself for the ongoing events, beginning to break down into tears once again.
“Kaos-chan, don’t worry. I’ll admit that this wasn’t exactly where I wanted to go but you don’t need to cry over me, I’m fine.”
Ruki said that with a smile on her face. If you’d spent years with her, you’d realize it was fake, only there to keep the other girl happy, but Ruki assumed that Kaos, not having known her for even a full year yet, would be incapable of detecting the insincerity.
She probably shouldn’t have made that assumption.
Kaos’ tears slowed, though they didn’t stop, as her expression began to change. A scowl started to form as she raised her head slightly. This angry side of her was not something Ruki had ever seen before and she would’ve found it adorable if the dissonance hadn’t made it so terrifying.
“Stop brushing your own feelings aside just to try and cheer me up Ruki-san! You enjoyed the amusement park, didn’t you? You wanted to stay, didn’t you? Well, you should’ve said so! It’s not fair to coddle me like this!”
Ruki was honestly taken aback. She hadn’t intended to treat Kaos as if she were a child in need of protection but looking at her actions today, it wasn’t hard to see how she may have done so. Still, she attempted to counter what the small girl was saying, paying mind not to make even more customers stare than already were.
“You were terrified Kaos-chan. We couldn’t exactly stay when you were like that.”
“It’s not about whether or not we stayed! You told me to be honest with my feelings and I’m trying but it doesn’t feel like you are!”
She had no counter to that. She’d explicitly thought earlier that Kaos’ feelings came before her own. Was that really how she should go about things? Didn’t both of their feelings matter?
Ruki grabbed Kaos’ hand and pulled her out of the store. Any more time in there and they probably would’ve been kicked out, given how loud Kaos was getting. Besides, her face was known, and it may not have been a good idea to let the fact that she was a lesbian leak to the world at large.
Kaos clearly realized that she might have been a bit too loud and was nervously messing around with her phone as they stood beside each other next to the Mandarake building. Ruki looked over at her as she was doing so and noticed that it was almost one. She had forgotten that they hadn’t eaten yet and that fact suddenly hit her incredibly hard.
“Hey, why don’t we get something to eat and talk about this?”
It had taken a bit to decide what to eat but eventually, the settled on a curry place. Ruki had beef curry while Kaos had chosen Tonkatsu. The smaller girl was the first to bring up the events of 30 minutes prior.
“I’m sorry for getting so loud earlier, Ruki-san. And I’m sorry for ruining the amusement park too. I just wanted our date to go well and I was upset that you wouldn’t tell me your real feelings.”
“No, it’s my fault for not paying attention to how you really felt about the amusement park in the first place. You shouldn’t try and act strong like that just to show off to me.”
Kaos finished swallowing a spoonful of her dish, sheepishly letting out a brief, “Mhm,” allowing Ruki to continue.
“I think both of us might’ve been a bit too focused on making our date absolutely perfect. I just wanted you to be happy and I might’ve gone a bit overboard in focusing on your feelings over my own.”
Kaos chuckled, which was a happy sign to Ruki. “This is the most fun thing we’ve done all day.”
This time, it was Ruki who laughed. “You’re right on that, Kaos-chan.”
Neither said it outright but it was clear to the both of them that agreeing on a place they truly wanted to visit together like this was what they should’ve been done in the first place.
As they finished up their meal, Ruki thought about what had occurred. Obviously, a relationship wouldn’t go perfectly, that didn’t happen even in the manga she read, but perhaps she’d been blinded by their chemistry. No matter how well they clicked, things wouldn’t always work out. At least she was able to learn that in a low-stakes situation like this. At least today’s events could help her future writing.
Upon returning to the dorms, the two of them went to their respective rooms, explaining to their roommates how they’d messed things up. While neither was super excited about the day, they had managed to recover things, so they weren’t in too bad of a shape.
Ruki, in particular, felt better, especially given her new resolution to treat Kaos on equal terms, especially outside their roles as mangaka. Tsubasa was a good listener and helped her feel right in her current confidence, until she butted in with one final comment.
“I’m happy you managed to work things out Rukki, but I had assumed that for someone like you, a date would end in the bedroom.”
She didn’t know what to say to that.