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[fic] in progress. will get back to you. [Jun. 12th, 2006|11:20 am]
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in the interest of chibiness, we write baby!shinomiya fic.

beware: original characterization abounds.

During long holidays, Shinomiya Kouji came home to his father's temple. If things were as they should be, Shinomiya Hirose would be home to greet his older brother in his bedroom, sitting up on his mattress, blankets around his legs and sketchbook ready, restless fingers eagerly fluttering on the cover.

Hirose would eagerly show his Niisan all his new sketches. Sometimes they had similar themes - like spring, or magic, or robots, even; Hirose liked to impress his Niisan with his flexibility.

This time, his theme was nostalgia. And at the young age of fourteen, it seemed he'd amassed enough memories to fill up a sketchbook with, while waiting for his brother to come home from boarding school.

"Do you remember this one?" Hirose would ask, flipping to a rough sketch done in thick graphite. It was a sideview sketch, rendered in anime style, but easy enough to recognize - of a small boy in a grade school uniform pulling along a small toy wagon, inside which was an even smaller boy wearing a kindergartener's hat. The older boy's hair was cut in a way so that you couldn't see his eyes, and the hat hid whatever expression must have been on the face of the kindergartener he had in tow.

The first thing Kouji recognized was the toy wagon. "You had that when you were four," he remarked, pointing. "We broke it because you rode in it so often."

"I wanted a new wagon," Hirose completed, "but the doctors said I needed to exercise more." He flipped the page. "What about this one...?"

The wistful smile faded slowly from Kouji's lips. The sketch was lifelike, almost like a photograph... though he was sure no photographs were taken in those days.

Kouji had always believed artists like his brother were born with different eyes, with irises that took thousands of snapshots a second, too fast for anyone else to see. So he was no longer surprised when he encountered things like these in his brother's sketchbook - things he thought he'd forgotten. Hirose had been taking pictures of them with his artist's since eyes long ago, saving them up for moments like this.

Hirose was a sickly child. Ever since he was born, he had been in and out of hospitals. And so from as far back as he could remember, Kouji has been in and out of hospitals, too, sometimes holding his mother's hand, or sometimes sitting by the bed, waiting for his little brother to wake.

Kouji could still remember when his brother was born. It was a difficult birth, he was told, and the baby almost died. But he fought hard, and won his entry into the world. When Kouji saw his little brother in the incubator, small, shriveled and restless, he thought: how frail, for a little soldier.

His parents told Kouji that his little brother had a weak heart. That was why he always needed doctors around. But Kouji hated doctors. At a very tender age, he suspected that doctors didn't really care about their patients, or their families. They were always in a hurry and they never could be bothered; sometimes they didn't show up for appointments when they said they would, making him, his mother and his little brother wait for hours and hours.

He hated the way the doctors sounded like his parents weren't taking proper care of his brother just because they weren't rich, and looked it. In fact, every member of Kouji's small family took such good care of Hirose, that it took away their time to attend to many other duties.

"You MUST give him his medicine every day." "You MUST make sure he eats right." Some of them talked to his mother or father like they were stupid. But when he tried to give these doctors a piece of his mind, his mother would cover his mouth and look at him sternly. "Kouji-san, please.. Sensei knows what's best for Hirose-san."

At the doctor's orders, he carried Hirose around in a red toy wagon, or on his back, instead of letting him walk the long distance from their home to school. It was no trouble for Kouji, because his younger brother was light and he enjoyed being carried, he thought of it as a game he and Niisan played. But one day another doctor got angry at them both and said Hirose should be allowed to walk on his own - otherwise, he wouldn't get his much-needed exercise. So when Hirose's toy wagon broke, his family didn't get him a new one. And Kouji no longer carried him on his back to school.

As far as Kouji was concerned, doctors were bad people. Doctors never agreed on anything, and didn't know what they were talking about. Then, as if Kouji could not hate doctors any more, Hirose was interned at the hospital when he was five.

The doctors seemed even more flustered and short-tempered. They were trying remedy after remedy - but Hirose would not wake up.

Kouji made up his mind then: no more doctors. They each had different theories, and none of them worked. His brother was dying. Kouji was sure that the next new doctor he would see talking to his mother would only be telling her something different - a new remedy, sure to work better than the rest - and pressuring her to give it a risk.

The next new doctor came on the eighth day of Hirose's internship in the hospital. Kouji had just come from school, where he was in second grade, and still in his school uniform, he rushed at the new whitecoat his mother was speaking to.

And with as much force as he could muster, he kicked the doctor's leg.

The doctor yelped in pain and hopped back, one leg up...looking at him with surprise, and not the least bit of enmity. "Kouji-san!!" his mother exclaimed, and she knelt to hold him back while he stood his ground and stared the doctor down.

"You won't touch Hirose!" Kouji cried, in his most threatening eight-year-old voice. "You'll stay away from my brother and mother! All you doctors! You just make things worse!"

But instead of getting angry, the doctor slowly put his leg down and held Kouji's glare. The alarmed look slowly left his face. When Kouji's mother let out a hushed stream of apologies, he told her "It's all right, ma'am," and bent from the waist so he could look into Kouji's face.

Kouji noticed that this doctor was much younger than the others. That must mean he knew a lot less. But there was such compassion and confidence on his face, that Kouji's clenched fist hesitated to come in contact with it.

"Kouji-kun," the new doctor said quietly, "I'm Dr. Matsui Junichirou. I'm going to tell you a little secret. I'm not your regular doctor." He winked, and it was a serious wink, one that went well with what he said next:

"Trust me. I'm on your side."

(end part 1)


- you know how Shinomiya and Iwai's first names are like the Zetsuai lead guys' first names (Kouji and Takuto)? well, decided Shinomiya's younger brother ought to be named after the Zetsuai hero's older brother, Hirose, for the purpose of this fic.

- nope, there won't always be crappy sketches for every installment. just this one, and possibly the third one. or the fourth.

- Hirose, Dr. Matsui, the mother, the nurse, everyone else, were created by me. I love inserting original chars even if it makes people turn away, shaking their heads. The rest is copyrighted Higuri Yuu, SPRAY VisualArt, and their affiliates.