Disclaimer: Kenkyo Kenjitsu wo Motto ni Ikiteorimasu belongs to Baby Chick Cake (Hiyoko no Ke-ki)
It was a day like any other.
That day, Kisshouin Reika walked into the Pivoine salon with a box in hand. The box looked like those used for sweets but unadorned, so it didn’t seem to be something store-bought. Their curiosity piqued, some girls approached Reika and asked her about it.
“Reika-sama, what might that be?”
With a shy yet graceful smile, she replied, “Actually, making sweets has always been a hobby of mine, but the results weren’t exactly something to brag about, so I’ve refrained from bringing them here. But yesterday, these turned out quite well, so…”
“So this is the rumored Reika-sama’s homemade sweets.”
“The ones that are forbidden to be given outside the Kisshouin family because of how delicious they are.”
Reika’s smile faltered a bit, but she quickly regained her composure and said, “That is quite an exaggeration. They’re really nothing much.”
The girls laughed.
“Reika-sama, humble as always.”
“Would it be okay to try them?”
“Please, by all means! Do let me know what you think of them. Everyone, please feel free to take some.”
Everyone in the salon brightened up. It was quite rare for someone to bring homemade sweets here, be it due to Kaburagi Masaya’s dislike of homemade sweets or the abundance of food available in the Pivoine salon. Add to that the fact that these were the Empress’ legendary homemade sweets. The boys especially were dying to try them.
In no time at all, almost all of them were gone.
“OH! This is good!”
“Yeah, you can’t tell this isn’t made by a professional.”
Everyone praised the bonbons, making Reika smile with flushed cheeks. A few boys were enraptured by her appearance and hastily looked elsewhere, lest they end up doing something they would regret later.
At that time,
“Kaburagi-sama and Enjou-sama!”
A girl noticed Kaburagi Masaya entering the salon with Enjou Shuusuke behind him, as usual. And also as usual, the girls raised a fuss, though since they were all daughters from good families, the fuss was relatively mild compared to when Kaburagi and Enjou were spotted outside. Noticing the crowd around Reika, they made their way towards her.
“What’s with the crowd, Kisshouin?”
“Well… It’s… nothing worth mentioning…”
Reika hesitated. Kaburagi was infamous for his dislike of homemade sweets. But one of the girls happily spoke up, “Reika-sama brought us some of her homemade treats, and it’s really wonderful. Please, you have to try some, Kaburagi-sama. Enjou-sama, you too.”
Kaburagi looked them over, but quickly lost his interest.
“Pass. Knowing you, they might be dangerous.”
Reika looked a bit unhappy, but it was nothing unexpected so she wasn’t especially angry. The ones who heard him were grinning though, imagining what exactly he meant by ‘knowing you.’
Enjou chided him.
“Masaya, that’s really rude. Kisshouin-san, don’t mind him.”
Smiling politely, Reika answered, “Yes, I definitely won’t mind him. Kaburagi-sama aside, would you like one, Enjou-sama? Though I’m afraid they won’t really suit your taste since I don’t remember you liking sweets.”
Certainly, Enjou didn’t seem to share his childhood friend’s love of sweet food. But since Reika made them, perhaps he would make an exception, or so everyone was excitedly speculating.
“Of course. Thank you for the treat.”
He happily took one bonbon from the box and put it in his mouth. Kaburagi started to walk away, heading for the sweets corner in search for sweets made by professionals, when someone said,
“Whiskey bonbons aren’t exactly my favourite, but yours is really tasty.”
Kaburagi halted his steps. Whiskey bonbons?
“Wait, what? You made whiskey bonbons?” He asked, a bit alarmed.
“Yes. Is something wrong?”
“Oh dang.” Kaburagi looked at Enjou, and sighed. “Well, too late.”
“Huh?” Asked Reika confusedly. Just as she wanted to ask him to elaborate further,
Everyone went silent.
They couldn’t believe what they were seeing.
In place of the usual unflappable Enjou, was a red-faced and swaying, drunk Enjou.
“Kyaa, Enjou-sama! Pull yourself together”
“No way, there’s just… no way, right?”
“It was just one.”
Shouts of unbelief and panic passed through the salon. Some boys led Enjou to one of the sofas in the room and gave him some water. Reika stood still and turned to Kaburagi, eyes betraying incredulity.
“Kaburagi-sama, care to explain how Enjou-sama can get drunk from one whiskey bonbon?”
Kaburagi shrugged, “Well, it’s happened before. He’s just that weak to alcohol, I guess.” He added, “I’m right. They are dangerous,” and laughed.
Reika quickly turned a sharp gaze to him, but then proceeded to ignore him. She headed to where Enjou was and knelt down in front of him to have a better look at his face. It was really flushed.
“I’m so sorry, Enjou-sama, I should’ve explained what they are clearly,” she spoke apologetically and worriedly.
Enjou looked at her, and broke into a smile.
For the second time that day, everyone went silent.
Furthermore, everyone who could see Enjou now could see how different this smile was from his usual ones. How to say this… it was, angelic?
Yes. A smile just like his brother’s, Enjou Yukino. Or was it Yukino’s smile that was similar to Enjou’s? Anyway, his smile was so innocent and sweet, a far cry from his usual gentle and polite smiles. Those were wonderful too, of course, but they also made people unconsciously feel like there was a wall between them. This, though, was so unguarded that it was destructive. A few girls went red instantly.
And the one who made him make that face was kneeling in front of him, the one he had called Reika.
From the shock of being called by her first name and the angelic smile attack, Reika froze in place.
Enjou called out again, and pulled her up into his embrace. Before Reika could react, she was leaning towards him with their faces terribly close to each other.
And Enjou closed that distance in no time.
Another round of shouting could be heard in the salon. Mostly of excitement, a few of disappointment.
Mouths locked in a kiss, Reika could taste the faint taste of bonbon she made. She was so shocked that her brain felt like it short-circuited and left her unable to move her body. But when she felt his tongue reaching out, she regained a little bit of her bearings and quickly put a distance between them. Though unfortunately, her unsteady position and Enjou’s strong arms prevented her from going further than putting a few inches between their faces.
“Reika?” Enjou looked sadly at her.
“Wh-wh-wh-” she couldn’t finish her words. Between having her first kiss stolen, and having said kiss stolen by one of the two guys whose popularity were through the roof even when there were a lot of eligible guys in Zui’ran, it was just too much for her small heart to handle.
Not to mention that this was the guy she always feared, one she tried to keep a respectable distance away, but to no avail. Enjou always had a way to sneak into her life and stay.
Like what he was doing now. He looked like an abandoned puppy that Reika couldn’t even muster the energy to get angry. It was like seeing Yukino sad. That, and because her head still hadn’t kept up with what was happening.
“Reika, you don’t want me?”
“W-WANT?” Reika squeaked out.
“No?” He tilted his head and asked so pleadingly. The girls around them couldn’t stop the blood from rushing to their heads from how cute he looked. Cute and Enjou didn’t usually go together. The boys were a mix of surprised and appalled. Except for one who started to tremble from suppressed laughter after his initial shock passed.
“E-Enjou-sama, lemme g—“
“NO!” Enjou hugged her tightly, sending her crashing into his embrace once more. “Why? So you like em young afterall?”
A roar of laughter could be heard somewhere.
“Yukino look like me. You met me dat time, so why you don’t look at me like you lookat ‘im?”
“No, Enjou-sama, liste—“
“No? So you want ‘em older? Yer a fatherco—”
“NOO!” Reika finally regained her composure due to all the nonsense she had been hearing. She once more tried to put a distance between them, but alas his grip was way stronger than before.
He looked into her eyes, serious though a bit unfocused.
“Then look at me?”
Reika couldn’t believe what she was seeing. Here was an incredibly stunning man, looking at her so passionately, innocently, hopefully. Blood rushed to her brain from all the excitement and shock, and it looked like steam could come out anytime from her head.
Seeing such a red Reika, Enjou smiled satisfiedly and hugged her face. Just like that he passed out, with an angelic smile still plastered on his face. Poor Reika was unresponsive from brain overload.
Everyone went still for a few seconds, until at last they broke into an excited cheer. Still suppressing his laugher, Kaburagi took pity on Reika and pulled her a bit away and tossed her beside his best friend. No need to take away the fun from Shuusuke and the others, he thought.
It had been a day like any other.
It ended up as a day to remember.
In the future, making handmade whiskey bonbons and giving them to their crush became a sort of custom for Pivoine girls.
But that was a story for another time.
A/N: This is definitely not canon. I mean, I imagine Enjou can hold his alcohol just fine. I just thought it might be somewhat cute. Also not sure how whiskey bonbons work. Can one tell from one look? If so Kaburagi/Enjou will realize it and this story won’t progress… But then I decided to stop thinking about it and write it anyway… I’m really sorry if anyone’s annoyed by it.
And many thanks for reading!