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 Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)

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ashyartemispotozuko

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PostSubject: Re: Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)   Thu Jun 18, 2015 2:49 am

James had been on his way to the host club, an early evening since he has to get home and work on a report early to finish and turn in for one of his classes. He was just coming near the building, when he saw a crowd developing. Curious, he approached, trying to see over the people's heads. They were saying something about a boy collapsing.

He pushed toward the front of the crowed, a bad feeling slowly working its way down his spine. When he had finally gotten to the front, he gasped. Yuki was sprawled on the ground, shivering and soaking in the cold. His hair was dripping down his face and he didn't have an umbrella.

"Yuki!" He said, pushing through the crowd. "I'm calling 911." A man said said, pulling out his phone.

"No! I mean, it's fine. I'm his friend. His name is Yuki. I'll just take him home. Here." He handed his umbrella to a nearby woman, there was no way he could carry the umbrella and the boy. He ignored the umbrella and the astounded stares. "Are you sure? We should really call an ambulance." A man said, reaching out to grab James's arm.

He shook the man free, picking up the smaller boy. "I'm sure. He will be fine." He said. Using all his strength, he picked up the smaller dripping boy. He was freezing. He pushed through the crowd, walking away. Luckily, his home was only 5 blocks or so from the host club, he only had 3 and a half blocks or so to walk. It wasn't far, but he was worried. Yuki was cold, freezing. He had to get him out of those clothes, and warmed up.

He got to his building, and immediately the doorman pulled the door open for him. "Can you please follow me up and hit the buttons for me?" James asked him.

"Of course, sir." He responded. James had known him for years. He called the elevator for James and stepped on with him, pressing 'P' for Penthouse. "Is he going to be alright, sir?" He asked curiously, stepping on and closing the doors fast as possible.

"He will be fine, thank you for your concern." James said. The ride up the tall building was slow, and seemed to take longer than ever with the freezing soaking boy in his arms. Finally the door opened and revealed a single door.

"My keys are in my front right pocket, if you would." James instructed. The doorman opened his door for him, setting the keys on the shelf beside the inside of the door and closing it behind James once he and the boy had entered. He returned to his post.

In the meantime, James carried Yuki into the spare room and set him on the futon. He knew he had to get out of the frozen clothes. He pulled them off the boy layer by layer, soaking the futon and throwing the clothes in a pile on the floor. He avoided looking at Yuki's sensitive parts, but his gaze was drawn to the abnormal amount of bruises and cuts covering his torso and legs. No time to worry about that now...

He carried him then to his own bed, placing him under the covers and turning the heating blanket on maximum. He warmed a compress and put it over his forehead, flipping it occasionally. Some of the bruises were fresh, very fresh. Within 24 hours fresh. Some were old, perhaps weeks old. Some were in between. All in all, the boy looked as if he was regularly beaten. There was no way he was in that many gang fights or anything of the sort. If it was that bad of trouble, he would be dead by now, simple as that.

No, the bruises had to come from somewhere else. A more direct source. Ether a friend or teacher or coworker or relative. His money was on the last option, that was where most peoples sources seemed to come from when they had problems.

He spent the next few hours checking the boys breathing and pulse and tempurature regualrily. He had a fever, not high enough that he should be hospitalized, yet. But if it rose any more, James would have to relent and bring him to the emergency room. Late in the evening, when James was checking on him again, he found the temperature had dropped one degree. Well, that was a good sign, at least.
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PostSubject: Re: Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)   Thu Jun 18, 2015 1:13 pm

Yukito slept for quite a length of time. The fever didn't drop until close to 1 in the morning. But it still lingered at 103. If James was awake closer to 5 in the morning, he would hear a soft mumble. It was barely audible, but there nonetheless, pained and almost frightened.

"I'm...sorry..."

A pause.

"Mama...don't go..."

A few moments.

"It hurts.......I'm sorry....I'm sorry..."

He went quite for about an hour. Then it started again.

"Don't...please..........I'm....scared...."

His mumbles were often just apologies and unintelligible things, sometimes sounds of pain or fear or sadness.

"Dad....please.........come back...."

His breathing became a bit more labored and his expression tighter, almost painful, as if he were having a nightmare.

"........I'm sorry.......I won't do it again....."

Yukito didn't pull out of the feverish mumbles until closer to late afternoon, and didn't start coming to consciousness until mid-sunset. He woke slowly, his vision blurred and his chest tight, brain fuzzy. It took him a bit for his vision to clear up, but when it did, he realized the ceiling he was staring at wasn't his own. His heart rate increased, and he slowly sat up, looking around. The place was absolute luxury. Fear made its trickle through his mind. He wasn't wearing his own clothes. A pair of drawstring pants barely held themselves up on his hips. What had happened to him?

He swung his legs over the edge of the bed, looking around further. The place was amazing and beautiful and obviously incredibly expensive. Where was he, though? He spotted his clothes on the edge of the bed, neatly folded, and his keys on the nightstand. He made quick work of dressing himself, even though he felt terrible. A cold. He had to have a cold. That was all that could explain it. Whoever had taken him though and brought him to that place, he didn't want to know about, and just wanted to leave before he was noticed. He quietly made his way to the door of the room, taking care to open it so that it made no noise, and peeked his head out. Nothing. No one in sight. He made his way along, using the wall for support, his legs feeling shaky and unsteady. He got to the end of the hall just barely, peeking his head partly around the corner to look around. He quickly hid back in the hall.

James. It was James. What had happened? Why was he there with James? His heart rate climbed again. He would have to be very nimble and have a miracle to be able to sneak past him to get to the door on the other side of the room. He swallowed hard, observing. Was there a way he could sneak past? The door was a little ways past the cube of couches. If he hurried, he could get past the couches and make a break for the door. He took a deep breath, peeking around the corner again. James had turned away, working on something on a counter. It was the perfect chance.

He moved out from the hall, slowly so as not to draw attention to his path. But there was nothing to brace himself on. He stumbled a bit, struggling to keep his body upright. He got just past the third couch when the dizziness hit him and his legs gave way. He dropped to the floor with a thud and a small groan of pain. There was no way that James hadn't heard him. He'd failed to get out. Now he would have to deal with the man, and the fear and awkward conversation that was sure to follow...

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PostSubject: Re: Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)   Thu Jun 18, 2015 1:30 pm

James was busying himself making them some food. Yuki's fever had gone done a bit, enough that he would probably be up soon. He was making food, beautiful music lightly playing from the speakers built into the kitchen. He was going to put more veggies into the soup, then he heard something.It was a thump, shortly followed by a slight moan of pain.

He turned around suddenly, looking into the living room over the counter. "Oh my god!" The music immediately lowered in volume, the volume being voice activated to where if someone began speaking it would lower for them to hear themselves talk.

He dropped the towel he had draping over his arm, hurrying into the living room. He was wearing his own clothes, all ready to leave. He reached for Yuki's elbow, helping him up. He sat him on the couch, worrying over him.

"Are you okay? Did you hurt yourself?" He leaned over the boy. He still seemed feverish and sick, not well at all to be traveling alone to home.

He didn't expect Yuki to answer so he continued with, "You're very sick. I was just making you a soup. Can't you please stay for dinner? Another hour. One hour won't hurt, will it? Please.I don't want you to go out like this."

He filed the insult in the back of his mind of Yuki trying to leave in secret, trying to avoid James and not thanking him. He was in bad shape, and James felt bad that he hadn't even wanted to say bye. There was no way he wouldn't have seen James through the partition from the kitchen and living room. It was only a half counter, the whole kitchen being visible easily from the living room.

"Please. Just stay for one more hour, then I'll take you home." He said, still hovering over the boy. He didn't mean to block him, he was just trying to help. He didn't want him to fall again or to become even more disoriented.
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PostSubject: Re: Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)   Thu Jun 18, 2015 11:21 pm

"Sick........dinner....."

Yukito had to fight the haze in his mind to comprehend the words James spoke. He was sick? James was making him dinner? He needed to stay? An hour? He groaned and put a hand to his head.

"Where am I? How did I get here?"

He closed his eyes, still trying to even out his breathing and clear his thoughts.

"I feel like I'm walking through fog in my mind..."

After a few moments, he glanced up at James. He looked genuinely worried. If he said that Yukito was sick, and was telling him that he was worried he wouldn't make it home, then had something happened?

"I.......why wasn't I wearing my clothes? I was practically naked....I wasn't even wearing my own underwear...."

His eyes widened and his cheeks flushed darkly.

"You undressed me?! Wh...what were you doing?!"

He didn't think about it until the words were already out of his mouth. There had to be some reason for it. James didn't seem like the kind of person who would kidnap someone off the street, drug them, and do things to them when they were unconscious. He bowed his head, feeling ashamed that he had reacted so poorly. His voice got much smaller...softer...as if he were trying to be as unnoticeable as possible.


"I'm sorry......I didn't mean to insult you.......I just was....I don't....I...it's kind of frightening to wake up in a house you've never been in, wearing clothes that aren't yours...there are so many things that could happen...n-not that I think you would do those kinds of things! I mean...I..."

He began to cough without warning, his chest constricting and shooting jolts of pain through his body with each cough. When he finally stopped, he took a few moments to settle his breathing.

"Sorry....I......thank you for helping me...I don't know what happened...I remember heading to work, and then nothing until waking up here..."

The realization suddenly hit him. Sunset. Not night time. He'd missed work. And school. And work at his other job. His eyes widened.

"Oh no....no no no..."

He looked around frantically, trying to get up but unable to get past James.

"I missed work and school...I have to hurry...I can't be late for my job at the host club..."

He looked up at him, his expression filled with panic.

"I have to get ready for work...I have to go home...I have to get to work..."

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PostSubject: Re: Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)   Fri Jun 19, 2015 12:14 am

"Hey, hey!" He grabbed his shoulders and forced him back into the seat. "You're in NO condition to be heading to home or work. You're still really sick. You have a fever. Last night your temperature was over 103. You need to relax. Let me call your home and school and such. You can call your work and apologize. I can pretend to be a doctor. Or make a generous donation or something. Really. It will all work out. Just relax. Stressing yourself out more is not going to help anything at all, least of all you."

Once he was sure the boy had stopped fighting him, he released his shoulders. He knelt down, so he was lower than Yuki. Yuki had to look down to see James's face now. "You were very sick yesterday. You passed out in the middle of the street. It was a miracle I was heading to the club to see you, I was there in the first minute or so. People already had their phones out to call ambulances and the police. I said I was your friend and I was taking you home. The crowd let me. Be thankful you woke up here and not in a hospital. I took your clothes off and washed them for you. They were completely soaked, I couldn't have laid you down in them. So I put some of my pajama bottoms on you... They're a bit big on you. But I left you in my bed. And I watched over you. I checked your temperature every hour and kept you warm and changed your cold compress and washed your face and.... I did everything I could."

He was staring at the ground. He sounded like he was tooting his own horn, which he hated. He didn't mean to sound that way, he was simply explaining what had been happening. He knew if he woke up somewhere strange, he would want to know everything.

"Your fever hasn't broke, but it's gone down. You've been... mumbling a lot, in your dreams. I think nightmares..... Anyway, I was making a hearty soup for you, something to make you feel better and hopefully help make you.... not sick. Better. Hopefully just help. But I swear I didn't.... Do anything weird. I mean. I didn't even look.... at... you."

There was a fierce blush coming over his face as he hurriedly avoided looking him in the eyes. "I covered you and pulled the pants on you immediately I mean. I just washed your clothes.... Nothing else. And, I mean, I have given you drugs, but only the kind to help you feel better. Cold medicine and stuff, when you were lucid enough to take it yourself. And I kept the doses right, I'm sure. I mean. I didn't give you too much. I was careful..."

He didn't really know what else he could add at this point. He wanted to bring up the bruises. After Yuki had been sweating for a long time, when James went to wipe his face, he saw there was makeup skillfully placed over numerous bruises covering Yuki's face as well, matching the bruises that covered his torso and upper legs and arms. They were definitely more than just bruises from scuffles. But he knew suddenly bringing up the bruises wouldn't be a good idea. Especially with how agitated he already was, James didn't want to say something to make it worse. He filed the memories and knowledge in the back of his mind though, reserving himself to bring it up later, at another point in time.

If Yuki choose to stay in contact with him after this whole ordeal was over, that is.
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PostSubject: Re: Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)   Fri Jun 19, 2015 12:46 am

Yukito took a bit to stop panicking and calm down. Well...as calm as one could get in his situation. And he was exhausted. Every inch of his body screamed at him to rest. He bowed his head, silently listening to everything James had to say...and feeling more terrible about the situation as it was explained from James' perspective.

He'd just helped him. Had done what no one else would have done. Had unknowingly saved Yukito a lot of trouble dealing with the hospital and his lack of information. He closed his eyes, covering his face with his hands. His voice got small again...barely audible...an almost defeated sound.

"...I'm sorry..."

He felt so ashamed of himself for thinking so negatively. He knew that James wasn't a bad person.

"I...overreacted......it was uncalled for.....I'm sorry..."

Yukito lifted his head only slightly, his eyes barely visible behind the mop of messy and tangled black hair. The soft gold couldn't even meet James' gaze, though.

"You don't have to go to unnecessary measures...it's my fault for not taking care of myself....I'll have to report in as soon as possible........"

...and hope I still have a job...

He frowned further, closing his eyes again. He couldn't lose his jobs. Either one of them. It would be impossible to get by. Too many bad things would happen.

"Um...thank you....for all of this...I.....I know it's inconvenient...I'll try to make it up to you..."

Yukito took a deep breath, bracing himself, and started to push to his feet, noting how much smaller he was in comparison to James. The older male had at least a good 4 inches on him, making Yukito feel a bit...small and short and something he didn't have a word to describe. He was shaky, barely able to rise to a full stand. Unsteady....dizzy...too hot...vision blurry...hard to breathe...

"I have to go home tonight...I have to....I have..."

His body wouldn't hold up, the fever hitting him hard again, and he collapsed...right into James...

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PostSubject: Re: Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)   Fri Jun 19, 2015 1:04 am

James grabbed him mid fall, setting him back onto the couch. "Stop. I already said you're in no condition to do anything. Tell you what. Give me phone numbers. School. Work. Home. I'll call and I'll take care of everything for you. I promise."

Without waiting for him to say anything or waiting for him to protest, he lifted him gently from the couch and carried him back to his own bed where the heating blanket was still on. He laid him down carefully, pulling the blankets over him.

"And I don't want payback. Please. I'll feel horrible if you find a way to pay me back. I am doing this because I like you. Because I consider you a friend. So.... Friends?" He smiled at him hopefully, hoping he would agree that yes, they were indeed friends.

Even if he said no, James would still look after him until he was well enough to go out on his own. Even if he didn't want to be James's friend, he would still take care of him. Maybe he just didn't want or need friends in his life. Ethier way, James wouldn't regret his actions. He'd helped him. That was all that mattered.
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PostSubject: Re: Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)   Fri Jun 19, 2015 1:31 am

He was too weak to protest. Barely conscious. Everything was a haze, like swimming through tar. But he was awake enough to be fully aware of the strength James possessed, carrying him back to the bed and tucking him in, the subtle smell of cologne drifting across his senses. Woodsy. He smelled woodsy...almost like a forest just before it was about to rain. He closed his eyes once tucked in, his breathing labored.

"No home number..."

No one could know about his father. No one. He did, however, reluctantly give away his work information.

"I work at Donjuro Construction....and the host club......my name is...Yukito..Hattori..."

He coughed, his chest tight, sweat dripping down his brow as the fever gripped hold of him. School. How did James know he was a student? Was it just his young appearance? But James should have known that you couldn't work at a host club or lumber yard unless you were 18 or older. Unless he was assuming that Yukito was in his last year of high school (which he was), and had already turned 18, then everything was just a jumbled mess of confusion, and he didn't want to think about it anymore.

"I'll...go to the host club...tonight...tell them.....I'll be there....I'll be...I'll...be there..."

He was starting to drift in and out again, barely there at all. He called him a friend. James was calling Yukito a friend. He didn't have the strength to open his eyes, but his voice managed to come out as a mumble.

"Friend.....I've...never had friends.......it seems....nice..."

The barest of smiles graced his lips, his voice almost impossible to hear.

"You're...nice......."

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PostSubject: Re: Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)   Fri Jun 19, 2015 1:59 am

James watched him drift back off to sleep, making sure to count his breathing and pule. He seemed fine. He was probably just tired and worn.

James left the room and grabbed his cell, calling first the construction. He explained that Yuki had been in an accident and would be alright. That was why he hadn't shown up for work today and he may not be able to come in tomorrow or the following day. He needed time to recuperate. He explained he had been passed out for over 24 hours and he was slowly coming back, but he wouldn't be able to to any physical labor anytime soon. He assured them though that he needent be fired because he would surely be back to work by next week. The man on the other end seemed upset, until James offered to make a donation to their next project. "Oh, yes. I totally agree, new equipment is always necessary for a great business such as yours, I would love to help you out..." After getting off the phone with them making a deal with him, he felt a bit confident. They told him that Yukito could take all the time off he needed and he should come back when he was ready, just that he should call them himself once he was up and about and explain a bit more for them. He was going to be put on temporary-unpaid leave for the time being.

He sat down, dialing the host clubs number. He should have called them earlier. Yesterday earlier. It wasn't as if he didn't know their number. He called and asked to speak to the head manager. A woman took the phone and began speaking to him. James explained as much as he was willing to about the situation, and the woman immediately switched tones. She had answered in full business mode, probably thinking that it was another call to critique her business or something. But her tone switched to one of concern, and she said that she really really hoped that he was alright and that he should take all the time off he needed. James was very thankful and talked to her for a while, but she had to get off to tend to some of the customers.

There. Now his jobs were settled. James called the school, and of course, it being late at night, no one answered. He left a message, asking to be called back at such and such number in regards to a high school student, Yukito Hattori.

He hung up and sighed. He wished he had been able to call his family. He was debating in his mind, weather there would be a concerned parent at home, or a horrible one. The bruises on his body could be from anywhere, of course. But James had his suspicions. There was no way....

He went and checked on Yukito again, placing the cold compress on his forhead again. He finished the soup then and watched some tv, heating the soup to a warm temperature and bringing it into his bedroom, hoping to coax Yukito awake enough to be able to eat some soup. Going this long without food could not be good for him. In fact, that would make his healing process that much more hard. He tried to get him to eat and drink the bottled water he had beside the bed for him.
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PostSubject: Re: Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)   Fri Jun 19, 2015 2:35 am

Warmth. Warmth settled into his body, drawing him back to the surface of his consciousness. As his eyes fluttered open, and his vision focused, he took note of James being there. He groaned, blinking several times to finish clearing his vision.

"Something...smells good..."

He managed to get himself upright, looking over. It was soup. Yukito recalled James telling him to stay for dinner. That he was making food for him. He bowed his head a little, frowning. No one had ever been so kind to him. Only the manager at the host club, who treated him like he was part of her handsome and beautiful family, had treated him with any form of kindness. It was...strange.

~~~

He took a breath and turned back to look at James. The man had been relentless for 2 whole days while Yukito had recovered, never letting him do anything that would exert his body. But he was feeling well now, and he really needed to get back to his life. Thankfully, it was the weekend. No work at the lumber yard until monday. It was already past the time to go in that day, and the yard was closed on saturdays and sunday. But it gave him time to recover. He was still internally trying to calculate how he would make ends meet since he had lost so much pay.

With a sigh, he lifted his head to give James a small smile, then bowed at the waist.

"Thank you again...for helping me so much...I...really appreciate it...I'll find a way to repay your kindness..."

He headed for the door, pausing in the arch of it, but not looking back at James.

"You're welcome to come to the host club anytime...I'll sign you up as a VIP so you get better access to services, and specialized seating"

He stepped out, making his way home. He had to take care of things before going to the host club. He only had a few hours. He'd made James swear to secrecy about his age, his jobs, and his being a student, explaining that if either employer knew he was only 17, he would be fired. He had not, however, explained why he needed the money from the jobs, nor had he given away any other kind of information.

He reached his house around 8, leaving him with only a short window of time. He made quick use of it, showering and grooming and then applying the necessary makeup to hide the residual little marks on his face. He knew that James had noticed them. He'd caught him staring several times, but never said anything. The man had seen him fighting. Hopefully he just assumed that the bruises were from fights.

He arrived to the host club early, explaining the situation fully to the manager and apologizing for not being able to come in. She was thankfully alright with it, and more happy to see him well than anything, but told him he couldn't miss work without advanced notice from then on unless it was an emergency. He took it as a blessing, and got himself ready, the tux fitting his body comfortably. He felt better than usual. James had made him rest, eat, drink plenty of water, and not exert his body in any way. He had more energy than usual because of it. And he silently almost hoped that James would come to see him.

He cursed his luck when Rika Nakamura came in at her usual time, flashing her VIP card and immediately calling for Yukito to be her host. It was the same pattern. She flirted. She tried to convince him to go with her. He played violin for her. Her friends giggled along with her with their fake smiles and half-silicon bodies. He ignored it, never dropping the facade of being a calm, collected gentleman. He just hoped she would leave soon. The sooner she left, the sooner he would be free in case James came.

He stopped for a moment while he was preparing some tea, his thoughts centering on his own motivations. Why did he want to see James? Why did he look forward to it? What was going on with him? Was he still sick? Was it his own way of wanting to repay the man for helping him? He didn't know. And it made him uncomfortable. Regardless, he continued to do his duties, the bow of his violin sliding across the strings in a myriad melody from almost sad to lively and beautiful, enough that he had the eyes of all in the room on him.

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PostSubject: Re: Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)   Fri Jun 19, 2015 2:52 am

James had come to the host club, but didn't ask to be seated. He simply wanted to make sure that Yuki had gotten there alright. He looked like his usual self again. He was covered in enough makeup to hide any bruises that James knew lay there, just beneath the surface.

He had gotten there just as he had started to play the violin. James stood by the door, watching him and listening. It was spectacularly beautiful. He could feel his heart and pulse moving with the pitches and jumps of the strings. It sounded like an emotional song, it certainly stirred emotions in him.

He really was beautiful. Yukito was perfect. He was really quite astounding. A student, finishing his last year and masquerading as an adult, working two jobs and handling.... Stuff. Certain things that James didn't know about yet. He was determined to find out anyhow. He was going to get to the bottom of whomever was hurting his friend.... And take care of it.

The song ended, and everyone had turned to be staring at Yuki. James slowly started clapping, and around him everyone began to take the hint and everyone began clapping as well, people starting to stand from their chairs to give him a standing ovation.

Well. He was fine. He seemed fine, anyway. All cleaned up and back where Yuki seemed most comfortable... That was good. James didn't need to stay. He had just seen him today. He turned and walked back out the front door of the club before the clapping had even fully subsided. He was happy for him. He seemed perfect, sitting in the lap of elegance, being applauded by crowds of people. He deserved it. He really did have talent.

James slowly began descending the front stairs, going to the main floor of the building. He missed him already, feeling something grip his heart in a painful grasp. No. Not this, not already. He had only felt this emotion a couple of times, once with a girl in high school, and once with a boy in his first year of college.

He had fallen in love with both of those people. The girl ended up dumping him for a taller full-Japanese guy though that played basketball. And the boy his first year of college, they dated for a year, but the boys family had decided to move to Okinawa, so he moved with them. He had told James it would be too painful to even stay in contact with each other.

So there James was. With a broken heart, two times. But he remembered this feeling. It was what he felt whenever he had to leave, when they left the room or when him or the other had said the word 'goodbye'. It was a painful experience, one he would never forget.

But this wasn't goodbye. He would come see Yukito at the host club some time this week. Not tomorrow. But soon. Of course this wasn't goodbye. They were just becoming friends. And James DIDN'T love him. Of course not. He didn't fall for people that fast. Even if they were quiet, reserved. Never thinking of themselves. Only focusing on what others did for him, or trying his hardest to cover his bruises, physically and mentally. Trying his hardest every day.... No, of course James didn't love him. Yet. It was just a strange feeling, perhaps the night air.

He pulled a smile onto his face, turning onto the street. It was a good night, he should be happy. Yukito was better. He'd done a good deed. He smiled, but even to himself it didn't feel real. It simply felt as if he was pulling a mask on, trying to hide his true feelings, as Yukito did every day.
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PostSubject: Re: Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)   Mon Jun 22, 2015 2:04 pm

Rika Nakamura was hell. Yukito loathed the woman, and she kept coming back to see him. For a few days, he had no peace from her. But the days had returned to some sense of normalcy, even though he found himself wondering if James would come to see him anymore. Except for one particular night. He returned home from work, only to find his father stumbling in the back entrance. The man saw him and rage took his face.

"Where the fuck have you been?!"

Yukito closed his eyes and accepted the abuse that followed. He never made a sound. He just endured as he always had. The beating left him in a lot of pain, and when it finally ended, he barely made it to his room and locked the door. His only solace. His sanctuary. With a groan, he tended to his wounds the best he could, and crawled into bed. School and the lumber yard job were very difficult the next day. He was sore beyond the norm, and struggled to get through a lot of his tasks. He was thankful no one had tried to pick a fight with him. He had to reapply his makeup multiple times throughout the day.

When it finally came to go work at the host club, he took a deep breath and tried to steady himself. He had made sure to eat and drink water, and freshly applied his makeup when he got there, changing into his suit and pulling his white gloves on. He took another deep breath after taking some tylenol, and moved out onto the floor. Much to his disgust, Yukito had to deal with Rika Nakamura again. She always demanded so much out of him. He had barely managed to make it through his violin set for her, pain lancing through his arms and hands. When she finally let him put his violin away, he was grateful, and barely managed to pour her and her posse tea without spilling it his hands were so shaky.

"Yuki-chan, you really should come home with me. You could be my private butler. I would pay you well for it"

As nice as more money would be, there was no way in hell he would serve that woman in any way outside of the host club where he was obligated to. She always stared at him like he was lunch, and he knew the kinds of things she wanted to do to him.

"As always, milady, I must decline. I am best suited here where I can be of service to all who visit. My deepest apologies"

He gave a bow at the waist to her, flinching slightly as his body reminded him of the bruises and possibly broken ribs. He rose back to his full height. It was only a matter of time before the woman and her posse finally left, and Yukito got to have a small break. He hid in the bathroom for a bit, taking a breather and popping some more tylenol. He needed it. He dabbed the sweat from his face and neck, reapplying his makeup, drank some water, and moved back out onto the floor. His eyes scanned for James. He really wanted to see him for some reason. If anything to thank him again for all he had done...

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PostSubject: Re: Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)   Tue Jun 23, 2015 8:55 pm

It had been a couple of days, James thought it had been long enough that it wouldn't be too creepy if he returned to the host club. He showed up at the host club and waited to be selected and sent over to the host he requested. The woman whom always seemed to be with Yukito was leaving, James glanced her up and down. She was obviously rich, but something just seemed off with her.

He was finally seated with Yuki, he pulled his own seat in, not wanting to trouble Yukito. After they were both seated, he smiled up at Yuki. He watched him, and he could immediately tell something was off with him. "Are you alright?" He asked. His smile was barely reaching his eyes. He had watched him with many clientele here, Yukito was normally a much better actor than this. Something was definitely wrong.

Yuki seemed to brush off him and his questions, thanking him for the other night and acting all like the proper host, almost. James leaned in, pressing. He lowered his voice. "Really, something is wrong. What happened? Are you okay? Are you just still sick?" He asked. He could see the fine tremors run through Yukito's hand occasionally, and James almost reached out to steady the teapot when he went to pour the both of them tea.

"Yukit-- Yuki. Something is wrong... I can help. I promise. Does it..." His voice fell even quieter, he was so quiet Yuki could barely hear him, let alone anyone trying to eavesdrop. "Does it have something to do with the bruises covering your body? Because I saw them... I saw a lot of them. Look, I understand. You don't want to cause problems, you want to just fight through the day and sleep through the night. I understand, I really do. But if someone is hurting you.... I can help. Please."

He tried to reach across the table and take Yukito's hand, but realized how highly appropriate that was and his hand dropped to the table mid reach, he moved toward a napkin, trying to disguise his movement as reaching for a napkin, as he looked away, trying to avoid looking at his own hand.

He returned his gaze to Yukito's eyes, his own dark gaze boring into Yuki's own eyes, willing him to submit to help, to let James in and to allow himself to be weak, just for once. For the first time in your life, you have someone else you can trust. Please, trust me. He thought, willing the thought to be passed through his eyes and across their gazes.
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PostSubject: Re: Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)   Tue Jun 23, 2015 9:41 pm

Finally he came. Yukito found himself more than relieved to see him, and especially so once James requested him as his server. He kept up his host act, however, needing to make sure that no one knew anything about him. He inwardly cursed his body’s state. He was less graceful than usual, and James was noticing it. He smiled a bit wider, trying to keep him from worrying.

“Quite alright, Sir, thank you for asking. And thank you for the assistance the other evening. I greatly appreciated it”

James leaned in, and Yukito had to fake that he was just straining to hear him, turning his head slightly. He frowned. James was noticing the falter in his movements. He spoke softly in return.

“I’m fine. Just a bit tired, is all. A host’s work is never done”

He offered one of his smiles once more…but it disappeared to a slight look of horror when James mentioned the bruises. He’d seen. He’d seen and guessed what they were from. Yukito had to quickly recover, shaking his head and rising back to his full height. He ignored the words, carefully putting the teapot down and serving James a small platter with a piece of sweet cake on it and a small fork.

“It is my pleasure to serve, Sir. I hope the tea and sweets are to your liking”

Part of Yukito wanted to take the help. To trust James and let him know more about him. But he couldn’t. It would cause too much trouble. Things would go wrong, people would get hurt, and Yukito would be to blame. So he just tried to push the words away, pretend that the bruises didn’t exist and that there were no problems. It was just better that way.

“Is there anything else I can provide? A performance, perhaps? I am a skilled violinist, if you care for such music”

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PostSubject: Re: Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)   Wed Jun 24, 2015 2:05 am

He shook his head slowly. "It's okay. I know you're a skilled violinist. I was... In here the other night. I saw you perform that one song. I was watching from the doorway. It was amazing. But no, your hands are shaking a lot... I would prefer it if you would not play the violin tonight...." He smiled a bit.

He realized that he had been assumptive and shouldn't have said such things in the middle of the host club. The bruizes were private, he obviously took so much care and time to attempt to cover them.

He changed the subject and spent his time with his host, and he left when the time was up. Before He left, he reassured Yuki that he was allowed to come over anytime. He asked if he would want a key or the doorman permission, but of course Yuki had denied graciously.

James finished the evening there and returned home, playing a video game until he was tired and went to bed. He actually had class early and work later in the day, two things in one day was rare for him, but he didn't care.
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PostSubject: Re: Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)   Wed Jun 24, 2015 3:35 pm

The rest of his shift was difficult. Mostly in part by having to keep himself in control and hidden behind the mask of a host. When he finally got to leave, he hurried out. It wasn't going to be good if he got home late. He needed to get there before his father so that he could hide in his room. He was thankful when he arrived and found that his father had not yet returned. He locked himself in his room, did his homework, and then took the time to sleep, his mind pondering that James had invited him over anytime.

School and work for the next week passed by fairly quickly. It felt like life had hit the proverbial fast forward button. Yukito was on his lunch break at school when someone picked a fight with him. He sighed, rising up and glaring at the idiot. Some moron from the advanced senior class. He was glad his body had recovered from the beating he'd gotten the previous week, because he felt good and was ready to go. As much as he hated violence, he had to keep up his facade, and so he grinned at the guy.

"You got a problem, asshole?"
"Yeah, I do. You're filth. You don't belong at this school. I don't know how scum like you even made it in the first place. You're worthless"

Yukito wished he could prove the other senior wrong. He was far more intelligent than anyone knew. He could have gone to the top high school in the country if he'd wanted to. Nevertheless, he just scoffed and gave a chuckle.

"What? Jealous because daddy's silver spoon-fed boy doesn't want to be near someone who's actually had to do something in his life? Let's see you live one day in my shoes. You wouldn't last 10 minutes"
"No one on this earth would want to live like you. You're disgusting. You should just drop out already. You tarnish the good name of this school!"
"Wah wah, cry me a river, dumbass, and quit your bitching. I've had enough of your whining. You gonna start something or not? You're wasting my time"
"You bastard!"

The guy came at him. Yukito slid out of the way with a grin, bringing an arm down on the guy's head. The guy tried to tackle him from the ground, but he grabbed the guy by the neck and tossed him to the side.

"A spoiled little rich kid like you could never take on the likes of me. Run with your tail between your legs while you still can. I'm half tempted to see what you look like with both of them broken"

The guy shouted at him, taking some swings at him that Yukito easily avoided. He needed to get it over with. A teacher had already been called for and was probably going to be there any minute. So Yukito swung a hand to score a hit on the pressure point of the senior's neck, rendering him unconscious. He heard the teacher shout from a distance, but ignored it and began to walk to the gate of the school, leaving. He just kept walking, uncaring of where he went. He just walked, trying to get everything off of his mind.

Before he knew it, he had somehow managed to walk himself all the way to James' apartment building. He stared up from the outside, frowning. James had welcomed him to visit anytime, but it seemed like a bad time to do so. He was in his uniform. And had a few scuffle marks on him. Yukito was going to turn and leave to go home, when he spotted none other than Rika Nakamura coming out of a fancy restaurant across the road and down a bit. He swore and dove inside the apartment building to avoid her sight, running up to the desk and giving the doorman a nervous smile.

"H-hi...I...I'm here to see James...if he's available anyway...I don't want to bother him if he's busy..."

He glanced over his shoulder. The woman would be able to see him if she continued walking down the sidewalk. He couldn't let her see him. He was in his uniform. She would be able to recognize his face. Especially from so close. He panicked even more as she started heading towards the apartment building. He dove behind the reception desk, trying to keep out of sight. The woman at it looked down at him, confused, but he shook his head, putting a finger to his lips and giving her a slightly frightened stare. She seemed to understand, because she smiled at him, then turned her gaze forward as the doors opened. He listened to her speak.

"Mrs. Nakamura, welcome back to our establishment! How may I be of service to you today?"
"Yes, I'm going to be having a guest come up to my personal suite. He has a key. Do let me know when he arrives, and send him up"
"Yes, Ma'am. Of course. I'll inform you immediately upon his arrival"
"You're such a darling"

The woman sauntered off towards a different elevator, disappearing inside. Yukito let out a sigh of relief, putting his head down. The receptionist, a young college girl with chestnut colored hair wound into an updo glanced down at him.

"Are you alright?"
"Y...Yeah...I just...don't like that woman..."
"I see. Have you been one of her guests?"
"I...no? No. I haven't. I don't want to be"
"Well, she should be up in her suite for some time. She spends a few hours up there when she comes"
"She doesn't live here?"
"Nope. She bought out a suite for herself as I guess a personal space away from home to relax. She always has a single guest when she comes, usually young men, college age. She said she's a tutor to help them with their business classes"
"Ah..."

Yukito knew better. He knew what those boys were for. He cringed inside, taking a deep breath. He should leave while he had the chance. But he didn't realize the doorman had already called for James...

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PostSubject: Re: Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)   Tue Jun 30, 2015 1:42 pm

James had spent the last week going from home to school to work, keeping himself more busy and picking up a few more hours here or there as he could. Working more helped keep his mind off of Yukito. Lately and more often, he found his mind wandering to the younger boy. He couldn't keep his thoughts away, wandering from different places. He was worried about him. He was worried he was going to work himself to death. He was worried his home problems would escalate and he'd never be able to see him again. He was worried he would pick a fight with the wrong people.

These thoughts wound round James's head as he worried about his newest friend. But James knew, he liked him much more than a friend. The hadn't spent a whole lot of time together, but James knew that his feelings were true. He liked Yukito for his perseverance, his ethic, his hard working-ness, the amount he worried and how he pushed himself. Even if the boy hadn't spent a whole lot of time 'being real' with James, James still liked him for who he was and what he observed of him.

James had just gotten home from work, tired as he changed clothes. His phone rang with an apartment memo. "Young man here to see you." it read. He replied, "Send him up."

He quickly put fresh clothes on and went to answer the door, where he should be coming up the elevator any second.

He knew without a doubt that it was Yukito. But why was he actually coming to James's home? And unannounced? His patience grew to worry the more his thoughts ran wild and he antagonized himself with horrific stories and thoughts of Yukito limping in bleeding, falling to the ground. He shook his head.

This was idiocy. He needed reality right now. He waited in the doorway with baited breath as he watched the elevator doors slowly slide open.
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PostSubject: Re: Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)   Tue Jul 14, 2015 1:44 am

It had been too late to turn around and leave. The doorman gave him a polite smile and waved him over.

"This way, sir"
"U-um...thank you..."

He nervously entered the elevator and was sent up to the floor that James' apartment resided, steeling himself for what the situation would end up like. He'd come completely unannounced. During the school day. Still in his uniform. What would James think? Yukito had to look terrible. The whole situation was weird and uncomfortable and Yukito had no clue what to do about it. When the elevator suddenly dinged that he was on the right floor, his heart jolted for a moment and he held his breath as the doors opened. James was standing right there, looking right at him. Yukito froze in place. James looked tired. He frowned and took a small step forward so he was at least out of the elevator, looking a bit uncomfortable and unsure of himself.

His hair was tousled and he looked like he'd been in a small scuffle, his uniform as disheveled as his hair. Yukito opened his mouth to speak, but closed it, unsure what to say. He bit his lower lip, looked away shyly. What could he say? What even was there to say? He swallowed hard, closing his eyes and taking a small breath. He kept his gaze on the floor, his voice soft.

"I...um.....sorry for...coming without notice....there were...strange circumstances....I don't really know how to explain...sorry......"

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PostSubject: Re: Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)   Tue Jul 14, 2015 4:26 am

James smiled kindly at him.

"I'm sure whatever circumstance brought you here is quite extenuating." He brought him inside and smiled toward him. "And no, you don't have to tell me if you would prefer not to. It's quite alright. I won't press for details." He said, smiling trustingly.

He headed into the kitchen calling behind himself, "Make yourself at home. Would you like something to drink? I was just going to put a kettle on." He said, turning the electric stove top on and filling a kettle.

He returned to the living room, his friend seemed to be quite quiet, not that he normally wasn't. And try as he might to ignore the mess he seemed and the fact that he was still in his uniform... Well, it was hard to ignore it. Something must have happened. He was curious, but he stuck to his word and wouldn't push simply because he didn't want to make him uncomfortable. If he wanted to tell James what happened, he would.

"I have plenty of clothes you can change into if you would like and if you don't have something to change into. You can just head into my room and dig in my drawers. I'm sure you'll find something comfortable in there. I'll um... Set the TV up." He said.

He picked up the remote as Yukito left the room and he changed imputs and turned the cable on, going to HBO and running through the movie section.

He hadn't been thinking about his room or drawers. He had completely forgotten that directly on top of his dresser was the oak wooden box. It had a picture of his mother set in the top and it was filled with ashes. There was a beautiful necklace that was obviously not James's resting next to the box. It was a woman's necklace, a butterfly with small emeralds inlaid within it.

Try as he might, he had never been able to figure out where he should lay his mother to rest. So he decided to simply keep her with him.

He had a couple pictures of his mother, but since he was 12 when she died, most of them ether had his very young self in them or were pictures he found of her from before he was born. He hadn't of course been taking pictures of his mother before he was 12. She took many pictures of him though, but when James had moved to Japan he had disposed of most of his childhood pictures. All they were was horrid reminders of a better time that could never be had again.

He found a suitable movie, one he had seen a couple times and enjoyed. He set the remote back onto the couch and returned to the kitchen, getting out 2 teacups and saucers and the jar of sugar cubes.

He yawned, he was tried. But he would hopefully never be too tired to spend time with his high-strung friend who seemed to have a couple double lives. He always would want to know more about him, he felt he would never be sated with any amount of talking or sharing lives or interests with Yukito. He was just so interesting and attractive, regardless of telling James anything.

He was worried about himself. He nibbled his lip as he stared at the warming kettle. He often found his thoughts wandering to Yukito. He found himself thinking of him at the strangest times. Sometimes when he left work he recalled their first meeting. And silly things like reading something for a school assignment, he would think to himself, "I wonder if Yukito has ever heard of this story? It's quite good, I should suggest it to him."

But immediately always he would shake his head and scoff at himself at his idealistic fantasies. How silly. He barely got to see Yukito, the only time they had ever spent an extended period of time together was in a bad circumstance in which Yukito was injured. They barely ever even got to see each other outside of the host club.

So what the hell was this? James had fallen for many people before, but never so suddenly. Or with someone he'd only just met. He normally fell for people he'd known for a long time or been friends with for a while. So that was what made this feel different, weird. He wasn't even sure if he was falling for Yukito. Maybe is was his delusions morphing into a strange thought, making him himself believe he knew more about Yukito than he did.

But he knew enough. He was a high school student, but working 2 jobs. He had bruizes all over his body. He never wanted to talk about home and he had said some pretty messed up things when he had the fever. He obviously needs money but is too stubborn to ask for help, not that he would even accept help. James was sure if he wrote him a few thousand dollar check that he would hand it right back. It's just the kind of person he was.

But... How did James knew who he was? He didn't. Like he'd thought, he hadn't ever even spent an extended period of time with the boy. He was so standoffish that he probably didn't even like James and he was too clueless to realize it. That if he kept with these delusions of falling for someone he BARELY knew, all he would end up doing would be hurting himself and he knew it.

He probably didn't even like James. There was no chance he would ever consider a relationship, because there was no way he'd ever like James. "He probably doesn't even like me..." He said quietly, a sigh escaping his lungs as he stared at the soon-to-whistle kettle.

He heard a noise behind him and jumped, turning around quickly, eyes wide. "Yukito! I thought you were changing. Um... I... I put the kettle on and tea should be done soon... What kind would you like?" He asked, stammering a bit as he worried that Yukito had overheard his mutter. Hopefully if he had, he wouldn't assume he was talking about Yukito, perhaps another student or coworker.
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PostSubject: Re: Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)   Thu Jul 16, 2015 12:17 am

Yukito really wasn't sure of himself. James was entirely polite to him, not asking any questions about why he was there. He moved into the apartment with a small nod, and gave James a small, yet appreciative smile.

"Some tea sounds good...if it's not a bother anyway..."

The offer of the clothes was a bit strange, but Yukito had already come entirely unannounced and it would be rude to decline the hospitality that James was offering. Another small smile was given, an he moved to the bedroom to change.

The picture of the woman caught his attention for a short bit. She was beautiful. He observed the image and the pieces around it. She was deceased. Who was it? Yukito frowned and shook his head. It was none of his business. He rifled through the clothes, trying to find something that would comfortably fit him. But he was smaller in comparison to James. He frowned, and grabbed what he could.

Minutes later, he appeared in the hall, looking nervous. The drawstring pants were loose on his waist even though he had them tied as tight as they would go, and the t-shirt hung a little baggily on him. Yukito knew that was a sign that he had to start working out again to fill out as much as possible. He was getting too small again.

"He probably doesn't even like me..."

Yukito paused, staring in James' direction as the male stood at the counter waiting for the teapot. Who probably didn't like him? Was there someone at his work or something that James liked and the person didn't return the feelings? He frowned. That was terrible. James was a wonderful person. He'd been so kind to Yukito, even with hardly knowing him.

When James suddenly noticed his presence and was startled, Yukito averted his gaze, nibbling on his lower lip.

"S-sorry...didn't mean to startle you..."

He glanced back a bit shyly.

"I like Earl Gray if you have any. Otherwise, anything will do. I like tea in general"

He moved up to the kitchen area, standing just outside of it, blushing and fidgeting a bit. He was holding the pants up. They kept trying to fall off of his hips. It was embarrassing and he didn't want an incident to happen.

"Um...do you...have a safety pin maybe? The pants are a bit...erm...big on me..."

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PostSubject: Re: Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)   Wed Jul 22, 2015 3:41 pm

He nodded. "Yeah, I have some pins. They're in... Uh, the drawer on the other side of the counter. You can grab them. And of course I have Earl Grey!" He said happily.

The tea finished and he poured two cups, putting the tea bags in the cups and carrying them to the table. He also brought a small cup of sugar. He sat down and waited for Yukito to join him.

Once he finally did, he stirred his tea a bit, and then began with a bit of small talk. "So... Today I had work and school. I opened at 8 and worked til 11 then I had class from 11-12:15. It was kind of a rush. Well, by kind of I mean a lot." He chuckled. "I had barely just gotten home when you came here." He smiled up at him, taking a moment to blow gently on his tea.

He had run out of things to say, the silence between them stretching. It wasn't quite a nice, companionable silence. It was mostly that but... there was a little bit more to it. It was... slightly awkward. He didn't know what else to say, and Yukito wasn't talking much.

He raised his cup to his lips and took a small sip. It was still very hot, but really good. He stirred some sugar into his cup and blew on it again.
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PostSubject: Re: Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)   Wed Jul 22, 2015 3:41 pm

He nodded. "Yeah, I have some pins. They're in... Uh, the drawer on the other side of the counter. You can grab them. And of course I have Earl Grey!" He said happily.

The tea finished and he poured two cups, putting the tea bags in the cups and carrying them to the table. He also brought a small cup of sugar. He sat down and waited for Yukito to join him.

Once he finally did, he stirred his tea a bit, and then began with a bit of small talk. "So... Today I had work and school. I opened at 8 and worked til 11 then I had class from 11-12:15. It was kind of a rush. Well, by kind of I mean a lot." He chuckled. "I had barely just gotten home when you came here." He smiled up at him, taking a moment to blow gently on his tea.

He had run out of things to say, the silence between them stretching. It wasn't quite a nice, companionable silence. It was mostly that but... there was a little bit more to it. It was... slightly awkward. He didn't know what else to say, and Yukito wasn't talking much.

He raised his cup to his lips and took a small sip. It was still very hot, but really good. He stirred some sugar into his cup and blew on it again.
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PostSubject: Re: Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)   Thu Jul 23, 2015 4:08 pm

Yukito nodded quietly and moved to grab the safety pins from the drawer, pinning the drawstring pants so that they didn't hang so low on his hips. Doing so made him a bit more comfortable, and he moved to the table to sit, giving a soft 'thank you' when James brought him the tea. The conversation was short, pretty much one sided as Yukito just nodded along. The awkward silence was almost painful. He had to break it. It made him uncomfortable.

"Um....sorry for showing up so unexpectedly....and thank you for the tea..."

He stirred in the sugar and took a few sips, letting the warmth spread through his body to help relax him. With a frown, he stared down into the contents of his cup. It wasn't fair to not explain why he'd come. Yukito took a deep breath, and opened his mouth to speak.

"I...left school early. I was wandering around and kind of ended up in front of your building. There's...someone I really don't like. A woman that comes into my work and always picks me because she's a VIP and can have priority pick of the hosts. She's...very set on me. She makes me uncomfortable. She looks at me in a way that almost...frightens me. She wants something more than to just have me as her host at the club. She's always asking me to come be her personal host at her home..."

He gripped his cup tighter, frowning further.

"I saw her outside the building and ran inside. But she was coming in, so I told the doorman I was here to see you, and hid behind the reception desk until she was gone. Before I could just tell the doorman to not call you to tell you I was here, he already was sending me up. I...didn't want to be an inconvenience..."

He glanced up through the messy black strands of his hair, a dirt smudge still on his cheek from the scuffle he'd been in.

"I'm sorry...I should have just run off. I didn't want her to see me and recognize who I was...I mean...I was in my uniform and it could jeopardize my job if she made the connection..."

Yukito gazed apologetically at James.

"I'm sorry for dragging you into this...I'll leave now if you want me to. I have to leave soon anyway to get ready for work. I don't mean to be a bother..."

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PostSubject: Re: Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)   Fri Jul 24, 2015 2:34 pm

James heard Yukito begin to speak. He was hesitant at first but then began telling his story well. He listened quietly and contemplated on what he had said.

Once he finished talking, James spoke, thinking. "Don't appologize. It's all completly understandable. I got into a few fights at school when I was in high school. But they'd send me home and try to call... Nevermind. But this woman seems horrid. Theres no doubt that I wouldn't want her to see me ethier, school outfit or not. She seems just lecherous. You're manager seems understanding enough. Can't you just tell her that this woman is bothering you? Can't she just tell her to not come back?" He asked.

He was almost finished with his cup of tea at this point and he stood to refill his cup. He returned to the table and this time he took some small finger foods to the table with him for them to snack on.
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Zeria Iiyasei
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Location : Wandering the insanity of the shadow realm...

PostSubject: Re: Carbon Copy - (Z and Artemis only)   Fri Aug 14, 2015 12:37 am

Yukito gripped his cup a little tighter, frown deepening. There wasn't a way to get her to leave. With the VIP status she had, she contributed a lot of money to the host club, and could easily make them lose a lot of business. He couldn't do that to Miss Emiko. She'd treated him like a child of her own, and given him a job when he'd needed it most.

"It's not possible. She's a VIP. That makes her an important customer of the club. And I don't want to put a burden on Miss Emiko. She's treated me very well. It's her business, and there's no need for me to be bringing personal matters into things and putting stress on her"

He sighed, shaking his head. He'd just have to endure. He murmured a small thanks as James brought some small snacks, nibbling on some carrots quietly.

"I appreciate the thought, though. I can endure it. I just want to make sure she doesn't find out who I am. It's really important that she doesn't. One slip up could make me lose my job and possibly get me kicked out of school. I can't afford to lose my job or schooling"

It was difficult to hear himself say that. His schooling was important. It was incredibly important. He wanted to show everyone what he was capable of. He knew he could get good grades and end up in the best college if he wanted to. But he couldn't get good grades and keep up the rebel appearance. It would make people suspicious. He sighed again.

"I'm sorry...I've brought a lot of drama to you. I'll stop. I should go soon anyway. I have to go to work"

His first job. They were going to be doing a lot of construction work. He'd have to prepare himself. Thankfully, he'd brought a small amount of money with him to grab a convenience store bento on the way. He knew he shouldn't splurge on it, but he also knew that he'd need the energy it would provide. Especially since he had to work the host club at night.

"Thank you for letting me come in and stay a while...I'll be careful not to let her see me on my way out..."

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