Morino Zaketa (Collaberation between @ERode
and Yours Truly :])
Tsurushi had only just back from her therapy with Hitsu. She wanted to make a quick trip to the convenience store to get the ingredients that she needed for the recipe she wanted to try, but she figured she needed to check how many of which of those ingredients she and Zaketa already kept in their hotel room. It was a good thing too, since for the first time since she even got here, Tsurushi found the room to be almost spotless! Ordinarily this would be considered amazing, but knowing Zaketa? Something had to have gone horribly wrong while Tsurushi was away.
Her suspicions were confirmed when she saw two suitcases out in the open; one of which had to be filled to the brink with everything Zaketa would normally have strewn across the floor, and the other being in the process of being packed. Tsurushi didn't know what to think about the idea of leaving this place. Her first instinct was to see if she could find some kind of clue that would give Zaketa to leave. An eviction notice? She looked over at the top of the table, then over to the bench and even inside the bin where all the trash would be placed."I... I don't understand,"
Tsurushi finally told Zaketa, "Why should we have to leave so suddenly? Did something happen when I was gone?"
She didn't know what kind of answer to expect from her young lover, given her current mood. That alone was enough for Tsurushi to tense up in anticipation.
"They found out," Zaketa spat, grimacing at the thought. "About what I...used to do before. What you're doing now." More smouldering anger surfaced, but she knew control, at least. Knew how to keep going, cramming more belongings into the suitcase."You don't mean...?"
Suddenly, it hit Tsurushi. There was only one type of people who'd even have a problem
with what she and Zaketa were doing now; those sleezeballs they both used to work under the employ of, "Love S Us", if she remembered the name correctly. Why they'd be pursuing the two after all this time, Tsurushi didn't know. But she did know that there had to be a better way they could get out of this situation.
Just as Zaketa shoved even more stuff into the open suitcase with more determination than ever, Tsurushi reached out and grabbed her hand."Wait, hold on!"
she demanded in desperation, "We're already as far away from that place as we can possibly afford; we can't just pack up and run away! Not after I... not after we had just got the chance to settle down!"
"What..." Zaketa narrowed her eyes, frustration leaking through. "What else can we do? It's not about the past, you know? It's about your
future, Tsurushi!" She pulled her hand away from the green-haired woman's grasp, fists clenched, shaking. "Thirteen years age difference, with the younger one being a former prostitute
. If that gets out, who would want you as a teacher for children?"
Her eyes were bagged, bleeding mascara.
"If nothing else, I
need to leave. You don't have a past with them, Tsu."
No. Zaketa was wrong; Tsurushi did
have a past with them. She may have used her power to rewrite it completely, but it was still fresh on her mind, as if it were yesterday. She hid that deep in her heart for so long, and she never told anyone. None of the teachers and staff she worked with. Not Yasuo. Not Hitsu. Not even Zaketa. It haunted Tsurushi deeply; enough so that she began to shed tears of her own."Zake..."
murmered a saddened Tsurushi before she suddenly brought Zaketa in close, and wrapped her arms around her, "This is all my fault. I got so caught up in trying to get you out that... I knew I should've thought of a better way to cut the ties between you and those scumbags! If only I wasn't such a fucking coward, I'd have...!"
Tsurushi let go of Zaketa, and distanced herself by the slightest amount. She took the time to wipe away a few stray tears, but then looked her lover straight in the eyes, with a newfound determination."I know you might think you're not worth the trouble,"
she adjusted her tone accordingly, "But I'll be damned if I'm forced to give up on the person I love. I'll find a way to fix this, Zaketa; I owe that much to the both of us..."
Zaketa was too old to believe that feelings alone would fix all this. It wasn't as if it was difficult
to run, but running away was different from escaping. She blinked, a difficult expression emerging as she placed a hand upon Tsurushi's own. Cold and warm, seeping through and mixing until they became the same. She took two breaths to steady herself, and forced a smile.
"Ok. I'll trust you with that." The dark-skinned woman said. "But Tsu. We're still going to have to pack our bags and run, ok? You need time to think, right? So. We're going to do this then. Just promise me. If things go poorly, cut me off."
She swallowed, released Tsurushi's warm, warm hand, and went back to packing.
"I'll be fine. I just want you to be more than fine.""Er... sure,"
Tsurushi replied hesitantly, although she was evidently lying through her teeth. She could never bring herself to cut Zaketa off. Honestly, she would kill herself before she'd allow it to come down to that.
Still, Zaketa may've been on to something. Perhaps it was
for the best that the couple secure another place to stay, even for a night or two before the big confrontation with 'Love S Us'... Just in case the highly likely event occured that something were to go horribly wrong. But where would they go? Zaketa had to know that neither of them could afford anything real fancy and secure, and that Tsurushi still had her job that they couldn't live too far away from either. Tsurushi didn't want to think about that. She was already racking her brain as it was.
Tsurushi knew she couldn't do this on her own, but who'd be her best ally? A prosecutor? No; their services tended to cost way too much, and she'd have to sacrifice her whole salary for the year just to be able to pay them off. The police? One would expect that to be the go-to choice for a law-abiding citizen, but Tsurushi had no idea how sure the cops would feel about shaking down a place of business, and she'd feel bad for requesting that of them. A bruiser-type? Most of them
were too scary to even approach, let alone ask for a favor of any kind.
Maybe it was better for Tsurushi to just go to 'Love S Us' and figure out all the fine details along the way. And maybe she should start leaving right then and there; maybe make some excuse about checking somewhere out or.... something. But could she leave Zaketa to fend for herself knowing that those goons would come after her again? Tsurushi really did need time to think how to solve this problem. But could she really afford it?