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Thunder

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It was raining outside, the type of rain you wouldn't want to be caught in, not even if you had a death wish. It was raining cats and dogs and the streets became a huge puddle, or rather, a lake. Going out on this time of the night was more reckless than adventurous, and an umbrella would have been merely an accessory: it would have been swept away in an instant.


"I'm glad we didn't get caught in that." The bespectacled girl noted, looking outside and shivering at the thought of how it must have felt for those unfortunate enough to be on the streets.

"Mhm, we got in just in time. Wonder if we'll be able to stay home tomorrow~" the man besides her chimed, but his intentions obviously weren't all that pure.


"Hmm... I wouldn't mind." She smiled at him, turning her eyes from the window. "And it would be nice to have a day to relax and do something together!"


"Relax, you say~" the red-headed man stated with a smirk and slyly caught her waist, pulling her closer to him.


"Karma!" She exclaimed in shock, but not displeased, as she landed on his lap. She looked at him with furrowed brows, but the corners of her mouth were slightly turning upwards.


"I was cold~" he pouted, pulling her closer. Not that Manami minded. He smelt like cologne and fresh detergent, like pranks and intelligence, like home and loving arms. His embrace was sweet and warm, despite him claiming to be cold.


Manami nuzzled closer to him and he let his forehead rest on her shoulder, near the nape of her neck. Slowly, he started undoing her braid and braiding her hair in her usual twin pigtails. She didn't complain. However, she did ask: "why do you like them so much?"


"It reminds me of the good old times. Feels nostalgic... We were so young~" Karma murmured in her neck, focused on parting her hair in 4 equal tails.


"We're still young!" The woman laughed softly, fidgeting to find a comfortable position in his lap.


"Please be still! I want to do this perfectly." The red-haired exclaimed, slightly annoyed. However, any trace of annoyance disappeared when he heard her crystal-clear laugh.


"That's just like you." She answered, trying not to shift her head too much when talking. She could hear him smirk as he started braiding the left side, tugging loosely on her hair.


"If we do stay home tomorrow, " Karma broke the silence, "what do you want to do?"


"Are you plotting to pull some strings in that regard?" Manami asked suspiciously.


"Me? I would never do such a thing~ I feel hurt that you could even phantom that!" Karma mocked feeling betrayed. The woman in his lap rolled her eyes knowingly, but her smile didn't fade away.


A thunder disturbed the pleasant talk, startling Manami and making Karma drop the almost finished braid. Even after the sound died, the two remained in silence, the woman obviously tense, her hair now loose.

She knew thunder was but the sound of thousand of electrons slamming into each other. She also knew it was inevitable they would do so, as the clouds were filled with electrical particles and she knew that nature made it so that positive and negative attract, whereas two of the same type will cause repulsions. And yet, she was afraid. One more proof that science can’t cure the irrational fear of humans.

"Manami." Karma whispered, making the girl shiver once again. He was well aware of her fear of thunder, which she always shrugged off as stupid or childish. And yet, he never once thought it was something to be embarrassed of, at least not coming from the guy who was afraid of not being afraid of anything. Paradoxical, given that he wasn't afraid of anything else.


"Oh, s-s-sorry." She stuttered, relaxing a bit as she brought her knees to her chest. She was startled yet again when Karma hugged her figure, bringing her closer to his chest and holding her tight.


"Don't apologise" he muttered in a soothing voice, his scent and his warmth helping her relax.


"Mhm" she nodded, sighing in relief as he massaged her neck and she took in the moment: his arms, hugging her with love and a feeling of safety; his back, so wide compared to hers, the contrast even more evident when she curled up in herself; his chest, muscular even through his sweater, but also oh so warm, a warmth that leaked and flew into her, making Manami lean back into him and absorb all of it; his head, crooked on her shoulder; his breath, hot against her skin, and his messy red hair in her eyes: red for love and passion, red for powerful and daring. She found her hand clasping over his, the other messing through his bangs, bringing him even closer to her, in something that became their space.


A lightning disturbed the moment of peace and Manami could sense Karma's grip tightening around her. She chuckled: of course she knew a thunder was coming, but she wasn't alone. She didn't need to count the seconds anymore and hope it'll go away: she was scared, but she wasn't alone.

"If we do get tomorrow off" she started, cut off by the thunder. She clasped his hand tighter and internally thanked Karma for being taller than than her and thus not seeing her scared face. After the sound died down, she continued: "can we please stay in?" Her voice came out shaky and strangled.

Her boyfriend sighed next to her ear and responded: "Sure." Her trying to be strong always seemed unreasonable to him, at least when they were together and alone. He gave her a quick kiss on the forehead and pulled out his headphones: "wanna listen to some music?"


She nodded energetically, and pushed off the sound of thunder with "Falling slowly", her personal favourite. Of course Karma had it on his phone.