“Shin, we did it!” The teal-haired boy had let out an excited cry at those words. He had never had a sibling before but he was still excited at the idea of having a little sister.
“Come home quickly, mom and dad!” He remembered him screaming into the phone. He had hung up then and had gone to his room to finish his never-ending stream of homework. He was rather excited at the prospect of having a sister for he was almost always alone, even now he was, only the sound of low humming and of the crickets chirping kept him company.
The first time he met Kanna, he was rather unimpressed, she looked so incredibly frail and he didn’t know why but it annoyed him. Yet, he didn’t let it show as his parents were all smiles and he wanted to be part of that moment too. Kanna had been 8 then and he had been 14, he would never forget the way her head hung low as if afraid that he would slap her if she got her introduction wrong,
Kanna was always smiling he soon realized after a few days of cohabitation. It wasn’t surprising for he knew that he couldn’t look that different from her. They seemed to be two sides of the same coin but Shin didn’t like that. He didn’t like it because she was so similar yet so different from him. However, he didn’t despise Kanna, in fact, he quickly adopted her as his sister even if he went out of his way to show her that he didn’t acknowledge her presence in the family. He was also afraid that once he revealed the truth to her that her personality would change or something in the like.
At 16, that’s when things started getting messed up for Shin. A woman called Kugie kept harassing their family, saying things like she would get her family back and that they weren't allowed to just take Kanna away from her like that. Shin learned, thanks to a conversation he wasn’t supposed to hear that Kugie was Kanna’s biological sister. They had also said something about how she had been too young at the time to take care of Kanna back when she put into adoption but that now she could and wasn’t intending on letting anyone take away her sister.
Hate letters and other objects of hatred were sent to their family. It took Kugie two years to finally come up with a plan to get rid of Shin’s parents but had taken her own life in the process too. A horrible car accident had claimed the lives of both of Shin’s parents and of Kanna’s older sister. He could still remember the tears that Kanna had for all three of them while he stayed in the back of the funeral room, too afraid to do anything. He was barely legal but he had to take care of Kanna, it was a good thing that Shin’s parents were on the well-off side.
He couldn’t remember what had happened in the last year all that well anymore for he had forgotten a lot thanks to his hazy memory. It had been bad times for both Kanna and him, she would still smile and he would yell at her for smiling. He sometimes had nightmares that Kanna would leave him so he did everything he could to be nice to her now. He wanted to apologize to Kanna and he had but just a heartfelt apology hadn't seemed enough so he did everything in his power to make her feel at home.
They had moved into an apartment after their parents’ death. He remembers almost puking every time he would walk past his parent's room. Thankfully, selling the house had also brought him a great deal of money and he made sure that Kanna always had enough. People could say that he was spoiling her for all he cared, he knew better than they did. This was repentance for everything he had put Kanna through.
“Big brother Shin!” Kanna called out from the entrance, attracting his attention. He made sure to look at least slightly decent before he went to greet his little sister at the front door.
“Kanna, welcome home,” he muttered tiredly. He caught sight of himself in the TV’s reflection and he could see just how tired he looked. Kanna opened her arms for a hug and he smiled before indulging her in her little show of affection. He always did, Kanna was important to him and he would do anything for her to realize it.
“Have you sleep or eaten?” Kanna asked, muttering into his shoulder as he picked her up and almost fell over. He breathed heavily for a bit before he mustered enough energy to answer Kanna, he really did need to eat something. When had he last fed himself?
“Of course I have, thank you for taking care of your big brother,” Shin smiled but it didn’t reach his eyes. He felt like someone was hammering at his head like it was an unyielding nail. She lurched forward and heard Kanna gasp and hold onto him even tighter.
“Please put me down,” Kanna said it came out more like an order than anything if you asked Shin but he didn’t deny her, instead, he put her down like she wanted to and gently patted her head.
“Kanna,” he whispered as his little sister turned away from him and stomped the rest of the way to the kitchen. She didn’t even acknowledge him as he stepped closer to her. She would sidestep him everytime he got closer until he was forced to yield.
“Stay on the couch please,” Kanna said, eyeing him gently before bringing him some tea. He thanked her and she smiled as if that were the best thing that he could ever say to her.
Now, there were things Shin hated to say but that was important. Kanna had slipped sleeping pills into his tea. He wasn’t sure how many she had put in so he just put it in the plural form. He woke up 18 hours later, feeling relatively sated. In front of him awaited his dinner prepared with love by Kanna. Or at least that’s what the paper said and he wasn’t about to call Kanna a liar. She had long since gone back to school and he realized very quickly that he had missed a shift and then realized that he was no longer working for them.
His contract had ended yesterday and he grimaced, he would have to find a new job soon if he wanted for Kanna to get a better education. He went to the mailbox where his paycheck awaited him, he glanced around before pocketing it and locking the mailbox again. He went back into his apartment and went to grab the shopping list that Kanna had prepared for him. He was truly thankful for her, she was only 13 yet she acted like an adult.
He realized too late that he looked horrible, he was already inside the grocery and had half of the list done before he noticed the odd stares from people. The mirror isle confirmed to him that he looked like a mess, dark eye bags under his eyes, messy hair barely being hidden by his green beanie and the way he always walked, a bit hunched. He debated leaving the store and coming back later but he was already halfway done so he might as well. It wasn’t like he’d see anybody he knew in here.
Chicken and beef stock to make more soup for big brother Shin! ^v^
Those were the next items on the list, he couldn’t help but smile at the notes Kanna always left next to ingredients. He heard a child start crying then and turned around to see what was the matter. His mother was trying to appease him, saying that the ugly-looking man wouldn’t hurt him. Confused, Shin had looked around, only to realize the woman had been talking about him.
When the child saw that Shin was lokoign straight at him, he cried even harder, creating a scene in the grocery store. This was a first for Shin, he didn’t think he looked that terrible, did he? The mother listened to her child before she turned around and gave him a dirty look, hand on her hips as she stomped to him and glared.
“Look away, what do you think you’re doing? Eyeing my child like this? People like you should be ashamed to even come out in public,” the woman yelled, attracting attention from unwanted spectators.
“But… I’m sorry ma’am, I’ll keep that in mind that your child is stupid enough to get scared of another human being. Please refrain from making any unwanted comments for I’m certain nobody wants to hear him,” Shin promptly left. He missed the woman’s expression.
“Sir,” a voice called out and Shin walked faster, he could probably lose whoever it was if he walked quick enough.
“You left your mirror behind,” Shin whirled around suddenly, surprising the other man. He was about to say something until he saw the other’s appearance and froze.
It was a handsome man, he looked like he was about Shin’s age but he was already wearing a black suit and a red necktie was extending a mirror to him. Shin realized with a bit of a surprise that the other hadn’t even flinched when he had turned around that quickly. He had his hair pulled into a rat tail but that wasn’t what caught Shin’s attention. What caught his attention was the colour of his hair bore an uncanny resemblance to Kanna’s.
“Kanna? You know Kanna?” The man suddenly looked very agitated as his hands flew up to Sou’s arms near his shoulders. He held Shin in a vice-like grip, startling the teal-haired man as he tried to get away from the other one.
“Let go of me!” Shin protested as he struggled but he knew he was too weak to beat the other man.
“Answer me, do you know Kizuchi Kanna?” The man’s grip tightened impossibly and Shin grit his teeth.
“Yes, now let me go!” Shin threw his arms wildly, hoping to get rid of the other’s grip. It didn’t do much but after he stopped flailing around, the other’s grip loosened.
“I finally found her, my dear little cousin. Kugie did tell me that she found her but didn’t manage to get her back. I’m sorry for this rude introduction but I do hope you can forgive me, my name is Hiyori Sou, may I inquire about yours?” The man asked, his stance relaxed a lot but there was no way Shin could just trust a guy like that so he ran.
At least, he tried to run, completely forgetting that the man named Sou still had his hand wrapped around his arms. He grunted as Sou pulled him back toward him with seemingly no effort and asked the question again. A few people passed them a Shin was distraught once he realized nobody was going to save him from his predicament.
“What’s your name?” Sou asked, Shin grit his teeth, the other man’s hold was incredibly tight around his arm again. He was starting to piss Shin off and that was never a good sign.
“Satou Kai,” he gritted out and the other man finally let go of his arm.
“Kai huh, it’s a nice name. It was good to make your acquaintance, I will see you soon,” Sou smiled devilishly at him before disappearing somewhere else.
As much as Shin was disturbed by the encounter, he was more disturbed by the fact that he still hadn’t finished picking up everything on the list so he did his best to finish. After he had gathered all the ingredients, he went back home and called Kai, hoping that the house husband would pick up his phone.
“Hello,” Kai’s voice was always recomforting in some ways to Shin it was almost like it had a soothing effect.
“Kai, I used your name instead of mine to ward off this guy at the supermarket,” Sou replied in place of a greeting.
“I see, he must have made you incredibly uncomfortable for you to pull off a stunt like that. Would you like me to assist you in your escape?” Kai asked. It was nice to have a childhood friend who would listen and help you from time to time.
“No, it’s fine, if you could maybe just keep an eye out on Kanna when you stalk Sara?” Shin asked, hopeful. He would hate for something to happen to her and he couldn't exactly keep an eye out on her twenty-four seven.
“I will do so, please explain the whole situation in a more organized matter so that I may understand the issue. Would you also allow me to tell Miss Sara if she inquires about it?” Kai asked and Shin nodded only to realize he was on a phone call.
He ended up spending 20 more minutes explaining the entire ordeal before Kai seemed satisfied and promised to keep an eye out for his little sister.
He honestly did hope that this wouldn’t be the same situation as Kugie after all, he didn’t think neither Kanna nor he could go through that much ever again.