Fruits Basket: 12 Zodiacs! 12 Astros!

Invitation To Dinner

A loud sound of bell from the clock of Hiroshima High was heard inside the building. It was afternoon, which means that school hours were over and everyone could leave to their homes.

Arista stood up from her school desk, after placing everything inside her book case. She had a thoughtful expression while walking out of the class. Her mind began to replay the awkward moment she had in English class concerning Saki Hanajima. For the first time she felt exposed without actually having her garments off. It was like Saki had known her secret, but Arista was certain of that been impossible, right?

Arista gave out a loud and deep sighed, feeling uneasiness as she approached the locker room and walked inside it. She stood in front of her locker that was a metal door that was the size of a square. She raised her hand up for her finger to hold on the handle of the door and gently pulled to opened it. There were a few books inside the small container, which she started to pick up to be replace for the ones she didn’t need to be worked on.

While making her changes of books and notebooks; Arista heard the familiar voice of Tohru shouting her name. Bright purple eyes slowly moved toward the direction of her voice. Arista was hoping deep in her heart that Tohru wasn’t with Arisa and Saki. It wasn’t that she didn’t like the girls, but the awkward stare of the latter. Arista mentally sighed in relief when she saw Tohru walking toward her with Yuki Sohma and a bright orange young man, which she knew to be Yuki’s cousin, Kyo Sohma. Arista gentle smiled while closing her locker door as Tohru approached her with the Sohma’s cousins.

“Hello again, Miss Tohru.” Arista greeted before glancing behind the mention girl to greet the two boys behind her, “Hello to you both, Mr. Yuki and Kyo Sohma.” She gave them a light nod since she didn’t know them very well.

“Arista, I was wondering… Since you had helped me with chemistry homework, how about if I invite you for dinner? To show my gratitude.” Tohru cheerfully smiled at her as her brown eyes shined with hope for Arista to accept.

Arista never thought it would ever happen since she didn’t have any friends, for personal reasons. But what was odd is that even though she wasn’t friends with anyone in school. She knew what basically needed of them, probably because she paid attention to each of their life, hobbies, etc. No wonder the council wanted her to be Vice-President. She could be a good addition and help the President, who is Yuki, to take note of every single student.

“It will be lovely to have dinner in your hou-” Arista was interrupted by Yuki.

“Actually, it is my cousin’s house, Miss Clark.” Yuki correct her, giving her a light smiled.

Arista raised an eyebrow lightly at this information. She began to wonder, why was Tohru living with the Sohma’s? ‘I will find out, once I get there.’ She mused.

“Mr. Sohma’s cousins house then. How about tomorrow? I’ll ask my… parents and I will tell you, alright?” Arista smiled as she felt delighted about the invitation.

Arista had made a short pause before saying parents, like she wasn’t sure of the word. But none of the three that were there question her.

“All right, Arista!” Tohru said happily still smiling at the Greek girl in front of her.

“I’ll see you tomorrow, Miss Tohru!” Arista shouted happily, waving as she left the locker room toward the school gates.

When Arista glanced in front of her, her smile dropped to a deep frown. She didn’t know how it will be possible for her to assist in the invitation. He wouldn’t let her, even if her life depended upon it. She glanced up at the sky with the color of light blue mix with purple, orange and pink meaning it was sunset. She silently prayed for the Gods and Goddess to be with her, but then she let out a short laugh out of irony. How can she be foolish? They were with her all the time… Watching her…

The Sohma’s cousins and Tohru arrived to Shigure’s house where they all lived, until they decided to move out to study for college, which it probably happened. After taking off her shoes, Tohru quickly went to Shigure’s studio to ask him if it would be acceptable for Arista to be for dinner tomorrow.

“Shigure…” Tohru softly called standing in front of the fusuma doors that separate her from entering Shigure’s home as she waited for an answer.

“Oh Tohru, Come in!” Shigure’s voice called out from behind the fusuma doors.

Tohru slide the door open but stayed outside of the room since it was a mess, a huge mess. Of course it would be a mess! The man had books and papers around him, just because he is a writer. Tohru knew well to never clean this area of the house. Not wanting to miss place something from him.

“What is it, Tohru?” Shigure asked as he was working on his next volume on the computer but took a moment to glance at her taking off his glasses.

He had shaggy raven hair that framed his heart shape face. His narrowed almond eyes were black color as they stared at Tohru. His skin color light color with a muscular and well-tone body that was cover with a deep purple yukata with a white one under it, because of the layer of fabric, his figure wasn’t very noticeable.

“I wanted to ask you... Would it be alright for me to invite a friend for dinner tomorrow?” Tohru asked, giving him a nervous smile, hoping Shigure would accept.

“Is it Arisa or Saki? You know, those friends of yours?” Shigure ask over, raising his thin eyebrow, curious.

“Oh no, this is a new friend, her name is Arista.” Tohru said as she took hold on the door wood board, being nervous on what would be his answer.

“I think is alright! Just tell Yuki and Kyo to behave when she comes here!” Shigure finished saying with a smile as he put his glasses back on.

“Thank you, Shigure!” Tohru shouted excited about it as she slide the door shout and walked away from the room to her and then to the kitchen.

“High school girls! High school girls, all for me! High school girls!” Shigure sing-sang in low tone with a playful smile on his lips as he went back to his work and continue humming the song.

Tohru changed into a long sleeve yellow shirt and plain skirt that reach a few inches above her knees and entered the kitchen to make today dinner for all the occupant of the house. She notice Kyo, who was wearing a tight black shirt and baggy brown cargo pants, standing close to the fridge with the door open and his leaning against the edge of it gently, not putting much weight on it. Kyo was taking long sip of the half gallon milk. It was obvious that the milk was his, while there was another one for the others and recipes. It was very natural for Kyo to drink milk for he was the cat in the zodiac.

“What did he said?” He asked after lowering down the carton and licked off some milk on his upper lips.

Tohru was taking in the sight in front of her. She had seen Kyo dress and do the same action every day, so why was she attracted to the young man a cross from her? It might because after all the times they had been around each other, there was always something that pulled her to him. She felt a light heat on her cheeks and knew she was blushing. Tohru quickly avoid eye contact as she walked toward the stove.

“What? Oh! Shigure said it was alright. That is, if you and Yuki don’t do anything to revealed your secret.” Tohru quickly explained, after forgetting what exactly did he meant with the question.

She started working on the dinner for tonight and also taking it has a distraction of the male in the room with her. ‘Hmmm… What would it be today…?’ She thought to herself as she searched through the counters.

“What?!” Kyo shouted alarmed as he slammed the half milk gallon on the counter, which made a loud band against the wooden surface.

The action made Tohru squeak surprise as she quickly turned too glanced at him with shock brown eyes.

“Sorry…” He softly mumbled as his expression softened for making the brunette girl scared.

“What are you shouting about, Stupid cat?” Yuki softly asked as he entered the kitchen wondering what all the noise inside the room was about.

He had finished his homework upstairs in his room and decided to be downstairs to accompany Tohru and heard Kyo’s loud mouth coming from the kitchen. Yuki just had to know the reason of his loud voice.

“None of your business, Damn Rat!” Kyo growled at Yuki annoyed and forgot about the reason of his shouting.

“I just told Kyo that Shigure agreed for Arista to be with us tomorrow at dinner and also to remind you both to behave when she’s here.” Tohru explained to Yuki is a soft tone with a small smile on her lips before turning around to keep cooking dinner.

“I still don’t think is a good idea, but why would it be the reason for you to invite her, Miss Honda?” Yuki asked in wonder.

He didn’t like the idea as much as Kyo and knew why he was shouting in the room. He was afraid that Arista might know the secret of the Sohma family. Not wanting to pass again by the experience of having someone’s mind being erased.

“Because I want to show my gratitude to her, after all she did help me in a class that I’m not so good at….” She gloomed herself. She knew very well chemistry wasn’t one of her best subject.

The food was finally ready and Tohru began to place the food in small plate to place them on the dining table for later to be used for them to serve themselves.

“I guess that’s reasonable, Miss Honda. Let’s just hope some stupid cat doesn’t do anything dumb and expose our secret to her.” Yuki calmly said, but extend his word when referring to Kyo making an indication with his words.

Yuki took his sit in the dining room by the table, followed by Tohru and Kyo, who also made the same action of taking their sits.

“What did you say, damn rat?!” Kyo shouted at him with an angry vein on his fore head. Kyo couldn’t hate him more now.

Tohru just sweat drop at the display in front of her and tried to calm them down, but deep down she knew it was useless, which made her sigh deeply, defeated.

“Are you deaf now, stupid cat?” Yuki keep encouraging Kyo’s anger to the point that the latter almost broke a ceramic cup that he was holding in his hand.

“Please! Can we at least enjoy some quiet in this house?” Shigure’s voice was heard as he entered the dining room at the moment his two younger cousins were fighting. He had caught the sense of the food from his room and went downstairs for it. Shigure would never miss a meal from Tohru.

Both, Yuki and Kyo gave each other a glare before being silent and continue to eat their dinner. Tohru had a nervous smile but glanced at Shigure with thankful brown eyes, who nodded back at her with smile.

The next day had finally ended for those who went to school. Arista didn’t see Tohru all day, beside their classes but she knew they will meet each other in the locker room. She glanced around the room and Arista spotted Tohru talking to Kyo and Yuki. She slowly walked to them with a nervous smile on her soft face.

“Miss Tohru, I’ve given permission to this dinner you’re giving me, which I think is unnecessary...” Her last few words, she whispered but it could still be hearable, gazing down at her shoes, like they were the most interested thing in the world.

Tohru lightly hugged her which made Arista slightly blush, trying not to have eye contact with anyone at the moment. She surprised from the sudden action, but recovered quickly and gently patted Tohru’s back in respond.

“I’m so glad you can come! And it is necessary, you had helped me and I need to find a way to thank you for it!” She cheerful said separating from the hugged.

“I bet your friends could have done it too…” Arista quietly said as she still held her nervous smile. “Hello Mr. Yuki and Kyo Sohma” She also greeted them not forgetting they were there.

Yuki smile at her while Kyo just looked at her closely finding her suspicious, which made Arista feel uncomfortable but she didn’t let it show.

“Should we begin then?” She asked, after slightly clearing her throat, glancing at Tohru for the answer.

“Let’s go!” Tohru shouted happily has she took Arista by her wrist that was cover with a lot bracelets, making the latter quietly winced but cover it up with a small smile.

Yuki did become aware of this but didn’t want to think about it so much, so he let it slide until he could see something to convince him otherwise.

They have arrived to Shigure’s house and Arista did like the resident. It had a calming atmosphere, by been surrounded with nature. They took their shoes when they entered the house.

Arista began to slightly and nervously glance at her surroundings, taking everything in as she walk inside the unknown house. Yuki noticed since he had been observing her from the moment they left the school ground to be at his older cousin’s house. He took a sit on the couch facing the television while Kyo have gone to the roof, which Arista didn’t know about and Tohru started to make the food for tonight.

“Miss Clark, why don’t you watch a show, while, Miss Honda finished the dinner.” He softly invited her with an encouraging smile and slightly patted the other side of the couch for her to sit on.

Arista slowly nodded to him as she approached the couch and gently sat on it, glancing at the television. Both of them sat in an awkward silent, which they wanted to change since it was getting on their nerves. But what could they possibly talk about when they barely knew each other?

“Umm… You are doing a great job being the President this year. Better than the last one in my opinion” Arista opened a conversation, even though it was about school it made Yuki silently sighed in relief as he glanced at her with a small smile.

“Oh, thanks. He was very much annoying, I could barely stand him.” Yuki replied with a light smirk on his lips.

Yuki’s replied made Arista softly laughed a bit, making the former smiled gently at her action. It was unusual for him to see this reaction from her since she always showed a serious mask around school.

“So this is the Arista I have heard so much about.” Shigure’s voice was heard from the stairs as he was walking down the step.

Shigure had a large smiled on his face, making his face lighten up, almost like a charm he usually used in his high school years. His first thought of Arista was that she seem like a “normal” girl, unlike Tohru’s other friends, Arisa and Saki. Yuki eyed him closely with his dark purple eyes; ready himself if he had to put Shigure under control. Arista stood up from the couch and slightly bowed at him.

“Hello, my name is Arista Clark as you know. I will like to thank you for receiving me in your lovely house.” Arista softly said with a small smile on her lips as she glanced up at Shigure.

‘A Clark, eh? So they are still around… Hmm…’ Shigure thought as he observed her lightly.

“Tohru’s friends are always welcome in my house. So Arista… What can you tell us about yourself?” He asked as he sat on a futon over the dining table.

“Well… The Clark family house is upon a mountain, that’s where I’m living… I have a brother… And I think that’s all…” Arista quietly answered to him taking a bit of pause as she thought of what to tell him or not.

Arista did live in the Clark main house. A family that you might have notice by the name comes from the western region, but the first Clark family has come here to stay in Japan since they thought not one will bother them with their secret. Arista also had a brother, who didn’t have a good relationship with. Arista didn’t saw him much. It wasn’t like Arista care for her brother since both didn’t get along very well for personal reasons and also a deep history that connected them.

Thinking about her family made her remember the event she had to pass to get this nice invitation of Tohru…

It was sunset when Arista reached her home, yesterday. She took of her shoes quickly once she was inside the main house of the large resident that belonged to the Clark family. The resident was divided by many small houses for those who wanted have their own space, Arista had one herself. Before she could enter her house or room as she called it. She had to talk to the head of the family and also owner of the resident. She slowly walked down the hallways of the house, reaching a door, slowly opening his door.

“R-Ruben?” She stuttered gently as she looked inside the room and saw a dark figure sitting on a bed.

“Arista, what do you need from me? Is very rare of you to visit…” The voice of Ruben was heard, it was sly and you could freely notice the cruelty in it but it was very hypnotic.

Arista cautiously walked inside the room standing a few inches away from the voice, looking down at the floor, folding her hands in front of her. She could feel them shaking gently on how nervous she was at the moment.

“I… I wanted to ask… if I could have dinner with a friend of mine…” Her voice was nearly a whispered as she asked this from him, taking long pause as she muttered these words for him.

Ruben stand up, slowly walking to Arista, who was still looking down avoiding his cold dark blue eyes that were slightly hidden behind his light brown shaggy hair. He gently lift her face by her chin, but when he notice she was still avoiding eye contact with him, he grab it harshly making her quietly whimper.

“And who is this friend of your? Is it a boy?” He gently passed his index finger over her face which made her closed her eyes in fear but then slowly open to look at him.

“N-No… Umm… Is a girl that I had helped in my classes and she wants to thank me with dinner.” She stuttered her replied as she keep looking into those intense dark blue eyes.

She was silently scolding herself to sound so afraid and probably like lying to Ruben. She was praying that he would not think any of it and believed her words since she was telling the truth. Ruben looked deep into her bright purple eyes and knew she wasn’t lying to him, but also took note on how afraid she was of him. It made him smirked with satisfaction.

“Very well, you can go to your friend’s dinner invitation, but remember Arista...” Ruben began to say as his hand went down, taking her wrist in a harsh and strong grip, making the owner of it whimper gently from the pain as he continue, “…For your sake, you better not be lying to me. Understood?” He firmly hissed at her, narrowing his dark blue eyes dangerously at her.

Arista felt her eyes began to water from the pain that emitted from her wrist as she quickly nodded at the one holding it.

Satisfied with painful expression upon Arista; Ruben slowly loosen his gripped on her and turned away from her to be back on his bed. Arista gently rubbed her wrist as she quickly left the room, slamming the door behind her. A single tear slide down her cheek and she went to her small house that was her room.

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