, embarrassment beneath the smile.png
When the morning comes, you rise to Momiji, her two scarlet eyes locked to your own. She inches forward, cuddling into your stray arm. You’re reluctant to leave the bed—so you don’t, mostly because Momiji has no intention of leaving either. You’ll respect her wishes.
“Good morning, Miji.”
“Do we need to get up soon?”
“It’s fine. We’re off work today, so I’m going to stay right here under the covers. Didn’t get much sleep last night.”
“I know,” Momiji says, her voice faint but sure. She smiles, embarrassed. “I was, um, there.”
“Uh. Yeah. Yes,” you cough. “I meant after that. I did some thinking.”
“About what?” she asks.
“About the pub, about what comes next, and, well, about us. But also, I thought about when I entered your room yesterday. I don’t mean to be all up-in-your-face about this, but what were you doing? Well, I know what you were doing but…”
Momiji relinquishes you so she can herself with her pillow. “I don’t know. What should I tell you? That I was imagining you forcing me to the ground and sexing me so hard that I couldn’t walk in a straight line the day after? That I couldn’t really focus on anything else? That I needed to have some me time really, really badly?”
You pause. “Frankly, all of the above sounds good.”
“It was a little bit of the first and a little bit of the second.”
“And the third?”
“We ended up doing way more than some me time.”
“You okay with that?”
“I’m more than okay with it,” she sighs. “I just didn’t expect you to drop by in the middle of the night.”
“Then lock your doors, will ya?”
“What happened last night makes for a solid counterargument, though.”
“Well.” You have no real comeback for that one. “I guess.”
You settle down with Momiji for another hour. Maybe two—you don’t keep track.. Sure, maybe it’s a waste of an entire morning, but you’ll be damned if it wasn’t good.
Momiji’s up first. You decide to lounge on the bed for another thirty minutes, but as she saunters off to the washroom, your gaze falls to her behind. You’d berate yourself but you can’t help it—at least, not after last night.
Your thirty minutes of lounging turns into a full hour when you can’t quite shake the lazy out of your system. By the time you’re up, Momiji’s already in your kitchen, appropriating food from your fridge.
“Oh,” she says. “We can make pasta.”
“Sounds good.” At this point, you aren’t even aware of what is or isn’t in your fridge anymore. Momiji’s been doing what she pleases with your household appliances and frankly, you don’t really mind. “You know. I think you use my fridge more than I do.”
“For some reason, I end up putting all my groceries in here,” she says, a toothy grin slapped on her face.
“You cook here, you eat here, you sleep here. Why do you pay for a single room apartment again?”
“It is kind of a waste, isn’t it?"
“A little.” You fumble for the right words in your head. “What I’m saying is that maybe you should, uh, split rent with someone you know and trust. Maybe someone you live next to and hang out with every day. Someone you like, or something like that.”
“Where can I find one of these people?” Momiji giggles. “Three towns over, maybe?”
“Nah, they ran out of nice guys a few months ago and—Christ, you remember that joke?”
“I’m good at remembering useless shit,” she says, beaming.
“I don’t believe you.”
“You forget to lock your doors all the time, dummy.” You pause in an attempt to veer the conversation back to what you were saying. “Uh, right. So.”
“So,” she says.
You just heave the words straight out of your mouth. “By any chance, do you want to live together?”
“Nah, I’m good.”
And, for just a moment, your heart sinks. “You being serious?”
Momiji looks to her feet, but you see the corners of her mouth twitch. Her face quickly breaks apart into a wide grin as she trembles in stifled laughter.
“Oh,” you say. “Ohhhh, you fuck.”
“C’mon, you. Did you really think I’d say no, even for a second? Of course I want to live with you. And as far as I’m concerned,” she says, casually throwing on an apron, “we already do. I wake up next to you every day, I eat breakfast with you, I work with you, share the same bed with you—it’s the whole works.”
“Well,” you say. “Yeah. I guess you’re right.”
Momiji smiles. She snakes her way around you and drags you by the hand until you’re led straight into the couch. “Now give me some attention. I want you to spoil me right now.”
“Aren’t you supposed to be making pasta?”
“The pasta can wait,” she murmurs as she leans against you.
“And you can’t?”
“Well, I could, but I’m not going to.”
“I’m fine with that,” you say, reaching for her hand.
But you miss because, suddenly, Momiji isn’t there anymore. She’s scrambling off the couch and into the kitchen, frowning as she goes. You just sit and watch, puzzled—until she moves the bubbling pot off the stovetop and turns off the heat. Then, her face blessed with pink, she returns to your side at the couch. “Now, um, where were we?” she says.
“I don’t really know, but at least you had the right idea. Kitchen safety is important, after all.”
“Oh hush,” she says.
You can feel Momiji’s breathing as her chest rises and falls to a steady but slow rhythm. It’s a gentle beat, you think. Still, you should keep yourself vigilant. You've already tossed away several hours doing nothing in particular. Adding some more hours to that would be a record high, even for you.
[ ] It’s a worry you’ll rectify tomorrow.
[ ] You should do something that involves more than sitting on your ass.
[ ] You have all this free time today. Maybe you should update for once.