3 Meeting The Family
"Tsuki-sama," Miyako whispered. She could just barely keep her voice down. The excitement from last night kept her awake and it was the exact same excitement that made her raise her voice unnaturally. Not only did Tsuki-sama wake last night but she was also ordered to accompany him this morning. She, the plain and quiet Miyako, was blessed to be in this beautiful man's presence for the day. Yes, Miyako had a crush.
Miyako couldn't help but stare at the sleeping man. His lips, full and pink, were coaxing, calling for her (or anyone for that matter) to just come over and kiss them. His hair, which had grown long from the millennium of sleep, was dropped ever so carefully over the bed, it's lavender hue hypnotizing and inviting. Years of brushing this hair made Miyako think about how soft it was. It was as soft as cotton and as smooth as silk.
Miyako made her way slowly to his bedside, opening the window so the sun could come in. He stirred when the sun hit his face, his eyelashes fluttering gently as he rubbed the sleep from his eyes and blinked several times.
He sat up.
"Oh." He moved his hair from his face, noticing Miyako. "Miyako was it? Good morning." His voice was husky from sleep but was still gentle.
"Good morning," she gave a quick bow of greeting.
With a swift toss, he removed the blankets from his body, the chill immediately sending goosebumps up and down his legs. Luckily for Miyako, if he had not been wearing the robe provided to him she would have been in for the shock of her life.
He stood, or at least attempted to. With one step he crumbled, landing to the floor with a loud thump.
Miyako rushed to him, swiftly grabbing his arm and wrapping it around her shoulders. She lifted him up and sat him down on the edge of his bed.
"You shouldn't be so hasty." She scolded, hand on her hip and finger-wagging, just like how a mother would her son, "There's no way your legs would be able to support you in such little time. At the least, it would take a month to regain-"
Tsuki stood again. This time testing his legs and pacing as if nothing happened.
Miyako was astounded. What?
"How did you...?"
Tsuki smiled at her, unable to give a straight answer. He wasn't quite sure himself how he could just walk all of a sudden. He felt an energy course through him. It was the same feeling from last night but it was not harsh and uncomfortable this time. It actually felt rather familiar.
"Have clothes been prepared or am I expected to walk around like this?" Tsuki asked jokingly.
Miyako still stood mouth agape. Suddenly, she shook her head, closing her mouth and moving about the room to grab the clothes the Great Mother provided.
"Of course!" Miyako presented the folded clothes, bowing and raising it above her head.
Tsuki bowed as he took the folded clothes.
"Oh no! You don't have to bow! I have to but you don't need to."
Tsuki cocked his head, confused. He'd seen her and the other two women do it. Was it not acceptable? He voiced his confusion.
"Well, you see, I'm a lady of the house. That's basically a maid in title so my status is lower than yours. It is only custom that I bow to you."
Ah, so it's only a custom, Tsuki thought. He still didn't quite understand. Perhaps this was also some of the memory he had lost. It would most definitely benefit to relearn them now than to regain them later.
"Please teach me these customs." He asked, "In return, please feel free to act and speak to me casually. Since I can't seem to remember, it's only fitting that I treat you as a friend."
"Of course, it would be my pleasure to teach you." And so they spent most of the morning teaching and learning.
By the time breakfast had come around he felt that he had a grasp of the basic formalities. He got dressed. Then, Miyako did his hair and led him to the dining hall. There the Great Mother was seated as well as a few unfamiliar faces.
Tsuki skimmed over these people. There were 2 men, a young boy and an older man, and a young woman. His gaze stopped on the woman, who's eyes connected with his. The woman's eyes widened in surprise but she kept face, her cold smile barely registered as she stared back at him politely. Her hair was cut into a bob-like haircut and she wore a kimono. It wasn't like the usual kimono, in which it was long, beautiful and flowing, but it looked and seemed more comfortable. The sleeves were short, almost non-existent, and the bottoms were just as short, though a bit longer. Tsuki smiled back while taking a seat at the table.
"Tsuki, my dear, welcome!" The Great Mother's voice, though soft, demanded the attention of the other patrons. "I'm sure you're all aware of this man but please formally meet him. Introduce yourselves."
The young boy stood up first aggressively bowing, his teeth shining a bright white. He was, at the most, 15 years old but he had the attitude and energy of a 10-year-old. His brown styled hair moved seamlessly with his movements coming to a stop when he did."Hey! I'm Haru!" He spoke fast. It was like he was speaking without a breath in between. "Spell it with specific kanji and it means easy-going type. It's not wrong honestly. I am pretty easy-going--I like to think so anyway. It's nice to meet you. Well, meet you while you're not dead. I don't mean dead I mean asleep. You were asleep, right? It matters but not specifically I don't think. Anyway, it's great to finally meet you formally." Haru reached over the table to reach for his hand but the young woman stopped him, hitting his hand with her own.
The older man glared at Haru. "Where are your manners, boy?" He hit the back of his hand with a loud thwack. "Sit down!" Haru, disappointed, sat, the older man gifting another hit to his head before introducing himself.
"I am Nijo. I am this disappointment's father." Nijo looked like the serious type. His gruff appearance made that fact abundantly clear. He had some grays in his black hair, signifying his age. His battle scars and deep wrinkles did no favors in making him appear any younger than 40. The man smiled, "I'm glad to have been the generation that gazes upon your face."
"You mean his conscious face, Dad?" Another hit. He didn't even look at him this time. This man is brutal, thought Tsuki.
The young woman was the last to introduce herself. She gave a polite bow, "I am Tomoe. I am the head of security here." Tsuki bowed back, as he learned from Miyako.
After the greetings, the Great Mother finally spoke, "Of course, this is not all of the family but they are the most important members. Nijo was the guard of your body for some time before he became my counsel. Please look to him for guidance as he will always provide the correct answer. His son has taken his place as your bodyguard. Please don't be too hard on him. He views everyone as a friend so he tends to forget himself and ignores tradition completely. Tomoe is in charge of the other guards here. Though Haru protects your immediate well-being, Tomoe trains and provides the back-up. She is our best and strongest fighter."
Tomoe became bashful. Though what the Great Mother said was true, Tomoe was extremely humble. She felt that there was always room for improvement. The minute she let herself believe she was the best was the minute she would lose her battles. Because of this, she vowed never to underestimate an opponent. This idea of thinking is what made her even stronger. Not only because she trained past her limits but she also never held back against an opponent, regardless of their skill. She has earned the reputation of a merciless woman. Behind her back, the guards called her the "Cold-Blooded Warrior."
"Is that so?" Tsuki asked, more to himself than to the others. He subconsciously stared at her, ideas running through his mind. It would be wise to ask her to train him. Considering he was found wounded he was sure he had seen many a battle, even if he couldn't remember them. If he needed a bodyguard then that also meant he was important enough to have his life threatened. Even if this happened years ago it didn't mean it wouldn't happen again. Haru, the energetic fool, jumped in before Tsuki could ask.
"She even trained me! Dad did too but he kind of sucked at it. Anyway, forget that. I'm going to be the best bodyguard you've ever had. So leave it to me." Another blow from his father. Does he ever stop? Tsuki grinned at the boy, "I'll be counting on you then."
As soon as he had spoken, a plethora of people entered the dining hall. There was a great commotion as each person, presumably family members, gave a yell of surprise. Everyone would either fall to their knees and bow, start crying hysterically, faint, or, as the younger ones did, stand around confused as to what the chaos was all about.
Tsuki was panicked. He stood attempting to calm the group down. This only made things worse as members ran up to him. He was becoming overwhelmed as they all quickly asked him questions of this and that. Was he really as important as they were making him out to be? Or was it because he was just some miracle man that managed to live for 1000 years?
Haru immediately jumped into action, backing some away from Tsuki. Nijo was trying to shout above the noise to get everyone to calm down. The Great Mother got to her feet as well, her graceful figure practically unnoticeable in all the mayhem. There was a sudden pressure in the room, the air becoming hard to breathe. Family members fell to their knees, other's grabbed at their throats suddenly. It wasn't too heavy of a change in the atmosphere but it was enough to notice.
"Be seated," she was calm but her authoritative tone was anything but. Right away they all found their seats.
"Wonderful." The Great Mother sat herself back down, smoothing out her kimono. "Now please, be respectful. He has only just been awakened. We don't want him to go unconscious again from stress."
The dining hall remained silent, "I'm sure you all have questions for him as well but, unfortunately, he has no memory of his life before waking up. If it's a question you are sure he can answer feel free to ask it but be patient with him."
The Great Mother snapped her fingers. The waiting staff came out through big doors, each one carrying a tray. Now that the whole family was here and the explanations were done, it was time for breakfast. As they were served, the chatter began, though the conversation was mostly of Tsuki and his arrival. Some of the members spoke to Tsuki, acquainting themselves.
As time went on, and bellies were filled, the conversation became focused solely on Tsuki.
"Tsuki-sama, are there some things that you remember?" One asked.
Tsuki thought a while before he gave his response. "I'm sure there are plenty of things that my mind and body subconsciously remember. For instance, I still remember how to speak. I know how to walk, I can count, and I know what certain items are without needing to learn of them."
Haru stood abruptly, slamming his hands down onto the table. With his mouth still full of rice he asked, "So does that mean you still know how to fight?"
Tsuki made a face, as did Haru's father. Tsuki's expression was more of thoughtfulness than embarrassment, an expression Nijo was getting very good at. "If I have to tell you to sit down again, Haru."
Nijo let the sentence trail off. Luckily for Haru, he wasn't entirely an idiot. He sat down, greedily shoving more rice into his mouth. After some serious contemplation, Tsuki answered.
"I would think so. I can't remember anything about fighting but I'm fairly certain my body does."
To the surprise of many, Tomoe was the one to stand next. "Would you feel up to a sparring match with me?"