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The bird and the arrow

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Sitting alone in her room, Umi sighed. She had been studying intensely at her desk for hours every day as of late, ready to graduate and start a new adventure. All the other members of u’s seemed to be increasingly busy with afterschool activities and family matters. The only person Umi wanted to study with was Kotori though she also ran off after the end of school every day too.

She checked her phone for the third time in the last 10 minutes, with no messages.

She stared at her notes that covered her desk in its entirety, her handwriting becoming progressively messier with every page. It wasn’t often that Umi got bored of studying, she always aimed for the top and accepted the amount of work that was necessary to reach those heights, but it just wasn’t the same without Kotori.

The words were beginning to blur her vision. She shut her book and closed her eyes, hoping her motivation would find its way back to her somehow.


Her eyes shot open and she grabbed her phone to see a message from Kotori.
“Wanna study at mine tomorrow? (:”

Umi felt relief cool down her body. She should have known that she could count on Kotori to ease her mind just as she needed it. She always could sense what Umi was feeling. Just as she’d hoped, motivation reignited through her again.

“That would be lovely, see you tomorrow!” Umi replied. She instantly got back to work with vigour, working late into the night.

Standing up, she stretched her arms into the air before rubbing her eyes. Outside the window, the black sky allowed her to see her tired reflection, that alone was enough to talk her into getting some sleep. The last thing she thought of before drifting off was the thought of meeting Kotori tomorrow and finally getting to spend time with the girl she had fallen in love with.

The sun was resting gleefully in the sky, accompanied by singing birds that awoke Umi at 7 AM.
It was the weekend, yet she still liked to get up early and watch the birds from her balcony in the morning. She pulled her covers back and hoped out of bed, opening the door to her balcony. The fresh air swirled around her, she breathed it in greedily after spending so long cooped up in her bedroom.

Two birds were flying after each other and she watched intently, it was almost as if they were dancing. Umi loved birds, they always looked so free yet graceful, the main reason of course was much simpler than that. Kotori.
Her eyes widened as she remembered she was supposed to be meeting Kotori today, her heart began to pound, and she was filled with an innocent joy that tickled her skin. With that, she got ready and ran downstairs.
Her parents were both at work, so she left a note to say where she’d gone before she put her shoes on and stepped out of the house, into the sunshine that seemed to light up the path in front of her all the way to Kotori’s house. 

Three gentle knocks on the door and a few moments later, Kotori’s beaming smile greeted her. Umi had known Kotori since they were little and yet her golden eyes still made Umi’s breath get caught in her throat.
“Tea?” Kotori smiled.
Umi, let out a small giggle before smiling back at her.

“I’ll be right back!” Kotori said gleefully before skipping out of the room.
Umi was left sitting on the floor of Kotori’s bedroom. She looked around to see sketches of costume designs and strips of fabrics littering her bed. It looked as if she hadn’t slept in days, not that you’d be able to tell by looking at her. Kotori’s dedication was one of Umi’s favourite traits, it always made her proud. She liked to think that she’d had that effect on Kotori. Pink lights danced over the walls from the sun reflecting on a box of sequins, Umi always felt serene whilst in Kotori’s room.

Kotori returned silently and snuck up behind Umi who was now facing the window. Resting her head on Umi’s shoulder, she blew gently into her ear.
“K-Kotori, what are you doing?!” Umi whipped her head around.
Their faces mere inches apart. The air suddenly became heavier to breathe and Umi’s face turned crimson.

“Happy Birthday Umi,” Kotori whispered before planting a gentle kiss on Umi’s burning cheek. Umi’s head was spinning, she had been so caught up with studying that she had forgotten her own birthday.
Kotori sat down and handed Umi a beautifully wrapped box, the wrapping paper was a dark blue with grey detailing. The bow on top was the same colour as Kotori’s eyes, Umi noted. Taking the box reluctantly, Umi opened her present.
“Kotori…” she gasped.
Inside the box was a key and attached to it were two keyrings. One a bow and arrow and the other a bird.
“I hope you like the keyrings, I made them myself, it was really hard… I’m sorry if they aren’t good enough,” Kotori blushed lightly. Umi put her index finger on Kotori’s lips.
“Is this a key to our own place?” Umi whispered, tears welling in her eyes.
Kotori nodded once. Umi could feel her smile under her finger, she gently cupped her face before deeply kissing her. She could feel Kotori’s smile growing on her lips as her tears freely trailed down her face. She pushed Kotori over and rolled to lay beside her after another minute or so of being lost in their kiss.

“Yes, I will live with you,” Umi said whilst gasping for air. Their entwined fingers and locked eyes held the promise of an exciting future.