It started out simple and sweet. A light kiss on a cheek before she departs the school. Just a simple peck and then they were waving at each other goodbye with bright smiles on their faces.
Nene doesn't remember when it began. She just knows that it became one of their habits - she cleans his bathroom while Hanako plays cards with the Mokke, Kou coming in later with Mitsuba behind him, fighting evil apparitions here and there, and Hanako kissing her on the cheek before heading home.
When she asked him why he does it he simply tells her that it was for the seal of protection, just like what he did after they came out from Number 2's boundary. Since he cannot follow her outside the school, he can't leave his assistant unprotected while he's not beside her. Or so he says.
His kisses are like butterfly touches. Barely there but never fails to make her face heat up even if his lips are cold. Sometimes he makes kissy noises just to tease her then proceeds to say something like "Oh~ Yashiro likes it when I kiss her cheeks. Do you want the seal to appear on your lips, to--Ack!", which will inevitably end with her headbutting him.
Little did she know that they have the same reaction whenever he kisses her. Just after she turns her back to him, he will be a blushing mess with his heart thumping rather loudly.
It is after school and Nene is sitting alone in their classroom with her head supported by her hands. She is supposed to be at Hanako's bathroom an hour prior but she was feeling rather drowsy.
Their midterm examination is around the corner and she is sleeping later every night reviewing all her notes. Why, oh why does she likes to procrastinate? It never does her anything good. Her sleep pattern is in jumbles and her eyebags are hard to conceal. Not to mention that she doesn't even understand some of the lessons they had that day because she was too busy fighting off her sleep.
She didn't even notice that she dozed off until she heard someone familiar say "There you are, Yashiro. So you really are slacking off instead of doing your cleaning duty~" With its tone remarkably teasing.
She doesn't know whether she responded to the sound or not but she did remember feeling something cool pressed to her forehead. It was rather short-lived but it soothed her to the point where she drifted off again, but not before hearing the voice say "You worked hard."
When Nene came to she was at the nurse's office. She doesn't know how she got from the classroom to the office but she does have a hunch on who did it.
She wasn't planning on making donuts before but she will buy the ingredients after her bathroom duty.
He gingerly brushes her hair from her forehead and gently kisses it. He then proceeds to carry her bridal style to the nurse's office to lay her down on a bed. After placing a blanket above her form and making sure that she's comfortable, he tenderly looks back at her sleeping figure. She was snoring rather softly and her pink lips were slightly parted. He moves his face towards hers and kisses her forehead one more time before leaving the room. He will check up on her in an hour or two. Even daikon-legged assistants need their rests, too.
"What was that for?!" Nene shrieks as she rubs her nose with both of her hands while simultaneously attempting to hide her blushing face.
She was happily talking to Kou about the upcoming school festival and what its theme would be when out of the blue Hanako springs up between them and landed a kiss on her unsuspecting nose.
Kou was spluttering behind her attacker, waving his hands up and down while staring at the two of them with pink dusting his cheeks.
"Nothing~" Hanako smugly replied before floating off to the window sill, just narrowly missing Kou's jab to his head.
Feeling flabbergasted, Nene followed Hanako to where he glided to and began to onslaught him with a series of headbutts.
Hanako was not jealous. Not at all. But Yashiro and the boy had been cheerfully talking for a while now and he felt somehow left out. He feels that he had to do something to take Yashiro's undivided attention. He feels himself smirk as he already thought of the trick he should pull off. And he thinks that the boy needs to see it, too.
Hanako is hugging her quite tightly and she can feel that he is slightly quivering.
They just stumbled out from Number 6's boundary to Hanako's bathroom and they were a mess of tangled limbs. After arranging themselves to a more appropriate position Nene was about to call his name but was duly interrupted by an arm encircling her waist with another one going around her head. He leaned his head on her left shoulder and just stood there without even saying anything.
It was not the first time that Hanako hugged her but somehow it felt different. It's more demanding if it makes sense.
Hanako moves them backward until his back hit against a wall and promptly slid there, making her sit in between his legs with her arms on his chest.
The floor they are sitting on is too cool to be comfortable but Nene barely notices that detail for she is more worried about the apparition hugging her and not emitting any sound.
"Hanako-kun?" She inquires confusedly while her arms move their way to his back. She returns his hug wholeheartedly because she feels that it is the best thing she could do for him at the moment.
He didn't answer at first. It could have been seconds or minutes, she didn't know because she was busy trying to decipher the reason why Hanako suddenly attached himself to her.
Hanako moves his head nearer to her neck and she hears him softly say "You got me worried there, Yashiro. I won't be able to protect you if I'm not by your side."
She is stupefied as she feels him press his cold lips on the crook of her neck just above her collarbone. Her face rapidly bursts into metaphorical flames.
Nene is sputtering and stuttering unintelligible sounds but stops when she feels his hold tighten around her.
"Let's stay like this for a while," he whispers against her neck and Nene can feel that Hanako's trembling thankfully stopped. She is honestly getting more and more concerned about his well-being.
Bringing her hand to his head, she plays with his short hair while declaring "I'm here, I'm alright." She feels rather than see the smile that graced his lips after her reassurance.
They remained in that position for a long time. Content and comfy while mutually consoling one another with a much-needed hug.
He needs to feel her warmth, feel her body against his. After the whole debacle that they've been through at Number 6's domain, he was afraid to let her go. Watching her fall down a massive hole, her leaving his side to follow her friend through a door he cannot enter, him seeing her in the clutches of an evil apparition with her hands falling limply on her sides and her eyes clouded over with misery and pain - he cannot burn away that cursed image from his mind. So after they landed in his bathroom, he promptly hugged her without thinking. He needed this to make sure that she is safe and sound, to feel her heartbeat against his chest, her breath fanning his hair. He won't let anyone or anything hurt his assistant ever again.
Nene pictured her first kiss to be foot-popping perfect - just like in the movies where the protagonist's partner pull her towards him and proceeds to kiss her senselessly, making her automatically lift her leg from behind (hence the term foot-popping), then cue in those massive festival fireworks. A typical, cliche kiss seen from most romcom movies but sweet and exciting nonetheless.
What she didn't expect is the bumping of noses, clashing of teeth, and awkward pauses because they can't seem to determine where they can put their hands on each other.
She also remembers thinking what if her lips were chapped. She didn't forget to put on lip balm, did she? Besides, Nene didn't imagine her first kiss to be on Kamome Academy's old building. And on a bathroom at that!
She just finished her cleaning duty and the bathroom was squeaky clean. Hanako enthusiastically gave her his seal of protection on her right cheek and she radiantly smiled at him after.
Just as she was about to turn away, she felt him tug her arm and drag her back towards him. Nene suddenly felt a firm pressure on her lips and her eyes widened at the realization that Hanako was kissing her. She was having her first kiss! With Hanako at that!
She was in denial for months now. She was always announcing that he is not her type but her words were losing its meaning as time goes by. She does like him. She likes him more than a friend would.
She slowly closed her eyes and smiled when their noses bumped with him saying sorry about that against her lips.
Their kiss lasted for just a few seconds but it didn't fail to make face burn and make her heart beat faster inside her chest.
When Hanako asks her what she thought about their kiss, she gives him her honest thoughts. Nene wasn't looking at Hanako when she was rambling but when she did, she can surmise that he seems somehow disappointed with her impression.
She grabs his arm and with her face flushing and turned downwards, she says something that made Hanako blush as much as she was.
"But we could practice more if you want," she whispered.
This made Hanako grab her face with both hands then incline his face towards her. And practice more they did.
And if she was asked how her first kiss was like, she'd tell that it was perfect and she won't change it for anything in the world.
He wanted to do this for a while now. Every time she looks at him he feels a strong inclination to kiss her. So he does it on impulse. It was slightly awkward but nervewracking. After their kiss, he is feeling exhilarated but slightly disappointed when she told him her opinion. Losing his small confidence, he unexpectedly felt her grasp his arm and her words after that made him all the more excited. Their kiss may not be what Yashiro imagined her first kiss to be like but he can assure you that even if no physical fireworks were seen during their kiss, he felt the fireworks exploding in his head with all their brightly-colored glory. And he is sure that she felt it, too.
Hanako and Yashiro are at the rooftop watching the sky turn from a strikingly brilliant red-orange color to a more subtle but equally stunning hues of pink and purple. The stars are just beginning to appear, their twinkling lights giving the sky a more magnificent appearance. The overall atmosphere is calming and peaceful.
They are sitting comfortably on a blanket thrown over the floor and having just finished eating the donuts that Yashiro brought, they are idly looking at the darkening sky.
"Hanako-kun?" Yashiro whispers at his side. Wrenching his attention from the sky above to look at the girl beside him, he notices that she was fumbling with her hands and looking at him like she wants to say something.
Waiting for her to speak, he intertwines their hands and gives her a gentle smile that made his eyes glitter like the stars above.
She suddenly places a hand in his shoulder and leans towards him. Her lips are soft against his and he can feel the deep affection and tenderness she feels towards him through it. Her kiss is gentle though still a bit self-conscious.
Their past kisses were all initiated by Hanako and this is the first time Yashiro started one. And he likes it. A lot.
Hanako presses his lips more to hers and tilts his head to get a better angle. His action made Yashiro squeak in response but she still manages to kiss him back with the same vigor. He places one hand on her cheek, the other one on her midsection, bringing their bodies closer.
He thinks that he was in control until he felt her slightly open her mouth followed by her tongue shyly probing his bottom lip. To say that he is stunned is an understatement. He stops moving at the spot which made Nene pull back and take a deep breath.
"I'm sorry I only wanted to try that pleasedon'tleave!" Yashiro mutters in a single breath. She is hiding her face with her hands but he can see that her ears and neck are beet red. And he can feel that his face is as red as hers.
He takes her hands from her face and holds it between them. Leaning forward, he gives her a multitude of kisses all over her face making it glow a shade brighter.
"Don't be sorry," Hanako softly tells his blushing companion. "I was just shocked. I never would have thought that you had it in you to do that. And you said you wanted to take it slow. Oh my~ My naughty little daikon is getting bolder and bolder." He squeezes her cheeks while still peppering her with butterfly kisses. "I like it," he finishes with a sultry tone while looking her at eye level, their faces mere centimeters from each other.
"Hanako-kun, you are such a tease." Her answering pout is the cutest one he has ever seen.
"Yeah, but you like it," he smugly declares, making Yashiro roll his eyes exasperatedly but still bashfully smiling nonetheless.
He cups her cheek with his right hand and his left going around her waist. Both of them leans towards one another and Yashiro snakes her arms around Hanako's neck.
With stars watching overhead, the couple is happily indulging on one another within their own, made-up universe.
Watching him look at the sky with a child-like wonder on his face made her want to kiss him badly. She was a bit shy to start it but the smile he gave her broke down all her inhibitions. She told him beforehand that she wanted to take their relationship slow and steady. But she was not that patient after all. She thinks that he won't mind it really. Not one bit.