The Host Club's Misery Business

The Hell at Karuizawa

It's amazing how much things can change. On St. Valentine's Day Kyoya told me Ryuu had been charged with drug possession and distribution, so with the charges stacking up against him I'd be lucky if I see him by the time I'm thirty. The agency already relocated me. Things have simmered down to a stalemate between me and Kyoya, so I'm not expecting him, or any of the Host Club, to barge into my summer vacation. I settled into my foster home about a month ago, it's still an apartment, but its way larger than I'm used to. With all the money Ryuu spent to supplement his habits housing was the lowest on his priority list, so we ended up in a rickety old apartment in a rickety old building that was ready to collapse any minute. But here I have a room where I can't touch both walls at once. I have space for a mini art studio up there too, and a real bed, not some crappy futon. I was about three weeks into my summer and I've already finished one mural art, two portraits, and three water colors. The mural art is for a design studio one of my foster-parents works at, the watercolors were those landscapes I never finished, and the portraits were of my two loving foster-parents. It's seven o' clock so I hurry to the front door to see Julia and Akira out, they share a passionate good-bye kiss before they head out for work. I've never been able to say this before but; I love my foster mom's.

I straighten up the place like Julia asked before I go take my shower. Once I'm out and in my bath-wrap my cell starts ringing "Closer" by Inoue Joe and I know exactly who it is. I wrap my hair in a towel and pick up the phone, I scroll down to realize there's a whole five paragraphs. Once I finish reading I press speed-dial.

"Yeah Tamaki? Haruhi's in Karuizawa", I say over the phone.

About thirty minutes later the doorbell rings. I go to answer it until I remember who it is and they start making threats through the door.

"We know you're in their Rikku so open up", says a voice I can only recognize as Kaoru.

"If you don't we'll bust the door down!", says a voice that's obviously Hikaru.

I dive behind the sofa, "Like hell you are! You break anything I'll make you pay twice as much", why did I just say that? They're rich!

When I get up to answer the door it has already been reduced to splinters and everyone just barged in. I fall to my knees morning the door, "Just how the hell did you get this address?", I stop and think for a minute, "You know what I don't even want to know", I said.

Tamaki ignores me and gets up in my face, "How do you know where my beloved daughter is and not tell you're darling daddy!", these honorifics are starting to creep me out/piss me off, "Little girls shouldn't keep secrets like this", he whined.

I sigh, "One, I wasn't the one hiding it from you, and two, Haruhi gave me this note about a week ago, it reads: 'Dear Rikku, Never-ever-ever-ever-ever-never-ever under no circumstances, even if you die, tell the Host Club I took a summer job in Karuizawa. I know they'll just follow me, Haruhi'"

"Alright it's settled then. We're going to Karuizawa!", why does it feel like he didn't hear a word I said?

"Well before you go, I wasn't playing, you all need to fork over the cash to replace that door that somebody", I dart my head over to Mori and then back to Tamaki, "decided to kick down"

All of them glance at each other before nodding their heads in unison. Tamaki snaps his fingers, "Mori-senpai"

He gives his usual one word reply, "Yeah", he bends over to pick me up by the waist and hoists me over his shoulder. I kick and scram as they leave out the apartment.

I don't stop, "What the hell? Put me down!",

Before long Tamaki's yelling of the side of the helicopter and we're landing. Haruhi's furious with me.

"What the hell Rikku, didn't you get my note?", she fumed at me.

"Well I'm sorry, they invited themselves", I answer, hoping my sarcasm was obvious.

This just makes her even angrier, "My God, are you still mad about that? Damn, you really need to grow up Rikku!", she yells. What you don't know Haruhi is that because they decided to "invite themselves" one day my life is turned up-side-down, but I'll be damned if I let you know that.

I change my tone, "Sorry, they overpowered me", she forgives me and we all go inside.

I feel bad for Haruhi the moment we enter the place. I mean, I've seen a few transvestites ("Ranka") but damn, throw a makeup-counter of two on a guy and you've got Misuzu. I know him and Haruhi's dad both work at the transvestite bar together, so Haruhi's dad asked him to watch her for the summer. The part that scares me the most is that I actually know as much as The Stalker, I suppress a shiver. Once we're all outside my body moves on its own to the seat across from Kyoya, I know I'm not one for awkward crap but this should be slightly awkward, I find it strange how I jump to sit with the guy who just threw me into foster care a little over a month ago. But either way I just wanted to go home. Everyone's grilling Haruhi for turning down their personal travel offers.

"Hey why was—", Kaoru starts.

"—your cell-phone turned off", Hikaru finishes.

"Haruhi has a cell-phone?", Tamaki death-glares at the twins.

I'm confused, "What's so strange about that? I have one"

"Since when?", he yells.

"You know, that thing I used to call you this morning", I answered.

"She hardly ever used it", Kaoru starts.

"So we made sure all of us were on speed-dial", Hikaru finishes.

Tears start to well up in Tamaki's eyes, "So does that mean I'm #1?"

"Oh I dialed your number", I answer. So between not being on Haruhi's "Friends and Family" plan and not being on my speed dial he made an "emo-spot" on the grass near the bushes.

Honey's flowers started to dance around his head, "So what numbers are we Rikku-chan?"

"Yeah we want to know too!", the twins exasperated.

"I'll admit I want to know as well", Kyoya chimed in.

I sigh, "I don't really care what numbers you all are, all that matters is that I bothered to put you all in my phone", they get bored with grilling me and go back to Haruhi.

Kyoya pulls out the school manual, "It says here that jobs are forbidden", well if you're going to Ouran why would you need one.

Haruhi stutters, "I… I didn't know that"

Tamaki recovers from his "emo-spot", "Well of course you have the freedom to spend your summer however you please", don't, "but like it or not so do we", shut up, "and I for one think Karuizawa is a lovely vacation spot", I think I just died a little inside.

We go back inside to talk to "Misuzu" and he tells us he only has one vacant bed left. Tamaki tried to take the bed for himself but Honey whined about it and the twins messed with him. Somehow the twins decided it would be "fun" to hold a contest to see who will win the bed and "Misuzu" is all for it. So that was the beginning of our "Refreshing Battle" a.k.a the "Making my summer a living hell" Battle. By the time it started Kyoya was already long gone. I drop the broom that mysteriously appeared in my hand and go join him. While I'm outside I see my #7 and Tamaki supposedly working on a fence.

"Are you not competing?", Kyoya asks me.

"As long as "Misuzu" keeps it up with that "oh it's such a shame I can't pay you anything", then no", I answer as I sit down across from him.

He looks intrigued, "I'm just now realizing that whenever you refer to Misuzu you say "him" and use air quotes"

"Well yeah, he's still a man. Titles like "male" and "female" can't be changed just because you dress a certain way. Like how Haruhi is no less of a girl just because she's a host, the same goes for me. We must accept that which we cannot change, and work towards changing the things we can. That's just the way it is", I notice him starring at me, "Sorry, I didn't mean to go all philosophical just now"

"No that's alright. So how are you getting along with your foster family?", he asks.

I sigh, "Since I know the underlining meaning of that is "who are your foster parents?" I'll answer that. They're names are Julia and Akira"

He looks confused, "So are they roommates or something?"

"No, they're lesbians", he just stares at me, "You don't choose who you go to, and besides I don't really care. They're people just like anyone else", I change the subject, "I just want this "Battle" to be over so I can go home"

"Well you can tell who's going to win at a glance", he states.

"How so", I ask.

"Well Honey-senpai's brand of cute doesn't exactly go over well with Misuzu, so he's out. Tamaki comes closer to the ideal, that is if he keeps his mouth shut, but we both know the chances of that, so…", I glance inside to see Hikaru and Kaoru flamboyantly leading a guest up to their rooms, "However…", I turn around to see my #6 shirtless, and chopping firewood for no apparent reason.

I think it over, "But wait, if Honey drops out then Mori will too. I can't really see him staying here without Honey anyway, so that means…", I'm interrupted by Hikaru and Kaoru.

"We're not going to lose, so you can forget about that", Hikaru states. They do have a valid point.

Kyoya pushes his glasses up, "Well there's always a way to make things more interesting"

I chime in, "Well there's always a way to move things along", the twins stare at us as we have a death-glaring contest. Let's end this.

Somehow I got hustled into helping Haruhi with the laundry.

I tote a heavy laundry basket, "So there's one more stop after this and we're done, right", I question.

"Yeah", she answers.

A guest comes to the window and tries to open it, but as she pushes out the whole window comes off its hinges. My eyes widen at the sight of the rapidly descending glass.

"Haruhi!", I drop the basket and give her a hard shove so she hurtles to the other side of the deck.

It's too late for me to get out of the way so I cover my neck and crouch down. I can feel several shards of glass stabbing me, some slide off my back while others stick. I waited a second to make sure all the glass had hit the ground before I go check on Haruhi.

I kneel down to her level, "Are you alright?"

Her eyes widen, "I'm fine, but just look at you"

I now have even more scars running across my back with small shards of glass sticking out of them, "Oh this? It's just a scratch", I smile.

Kaoru, my #4, comes running over to me with genuine concern. Hikaru, my #5, does the same but I can't tell if he's being genuine or if he's acting.

"Misuzu" shouts twirling on the roof, "Ahhh! Sacrificing yourself to protect your friend from harm, that's 100 refresher points!", I die a little more inside.

My #2 stops playing the piano.

"Well it looks like you won, so congratulations", Hikaru says putting his arm around his twin. Oh somebody's going to die—on the outside.

"What the hell? I made that plan for you two!", I exasperate.

"Well we thought—", Hikaru starts.

"—that you deserved to win more than we did. Your plan was perfect…", Hikaru jumps in, "But we tweaked it a little"

*Kyoya POV*

Rikku went up to her room and I decided to have a discussion with Hikaru. I catch him around the back and pin him to the wall by his shirt.

"Just what the hell were you thinking? You know if she didn't act fast she could have died", I state.

He poses a weak argument, "That's why we chose her, anyone else would have been too slow", I shake him.

"That's no excuse! And don't even bring Kaoru into this, I know it was you! So if you ever pull a stunt like that ever again I swear I'll—"

"Drop him"

*Rikku POV*

"Drop him", I say to Kyoya.

"Give me one reason why I should?", he growls.

"Because you can beat him up as much as you want, but that's not going to change him. Hikaru is Hikaru, jack-ass and all", I declare.

"Hey I resent that", Hikaru cries.

Kyoya and I yell in unison, "You're in no position to!"

With all Kyoya does I know he's really looking out for me. That's why he's my #1.

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