An Artist's Intention

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The Sister

I made my way downstairs. I heard the clanking of pans and I could smell the strong odor of eggs and bacon, maybe toast. Oh, geez, was Sayu home? If she was, I don’t think I would be the first person she’d want to see. Then again, I wasn’t the person she was mad at last time.

I prepared myself and stepped into the kitchen. There she was, dressed in a t-shirt and sweatpants with her hair pulled back. When I scanned the counter, I saw that she had used up almost half carton of eggs and a quarter loaf of bread. She was making quite a bit of food for one person. It didn’t seem like she noticed me. I cleared my throat quietly and she turned around. She wasn’t annoyed by my presence, thank goodness, but she was surprised to see me there.

“Oh, hey,” she said. “Saige, right?”

“Yup, that’s me,” I answered as kindly as I could. “Sorry to barge in on you like this.”

“Did he at least take the futon like I asked him to?”

“Like the perfect gentleman.”

“Good. Yukio always was polite towards women.” Sayu returned to her cooking and I just stood there wondering if she would mind me rummaging around her kitchen for food. Thankfully, I didn’t need to answer as she turned over her shoulder again. “Would you like some breakfast, Saige? There’s plenty. I can make you something, if you’d like.”

“Oh, I would hate to intrude.”

“It’s no trouble. I might as well since I’m already here,” she insisted. “Go take a seat at the table, I’ll be there in a second.”

“Oh…okay.” I did as I was told and made my way to the dining table. Sitting there, I glanced around the room again. Such a cozy home, if only the family inside felt the same. It was a rude assumption to believe that none of them got along, but there was always this constant tension lurking in the air around us at all times.

Yukio obviously cared about his siblings, but Sayu was still a bit of a mystery to me and Haruka wasn’t around for me to know otherwise. The only evidence I had of Haruka’s relationship with his siblings was what I heard from other people and that one painting where Yukio taught him the fundamentals of painting.

“Did you want something to drink?” Sayu called from the kitchen.

“Oh, um, water is fine.”

“Alright.” I heard the sink turn on and water hit the bottom of a glass. After a few seconds, she turned off the sink and grabbed a plate. Sayu walked into the dining room and placed a plate in front of me, herself, and in front of the empty seat next to me, probably for Yukio. Did she just carry three plates at once? I forgot she was a waitress.

Sayu sat across from me and bowed her head. Praying? I wasn’t religious myself and I certainly didn’t take the Ono family as such. Rather than mock an almighty power on high and fake pray, I just sat there and waited for Sayu to look back up. It didn’t take long and she ate her food quickly thereafter. I decided to do that same and began picking at it. Eggs with cheddar cheese and bacon. Oh, hell yes!

I took my first bite. Oh, wow. It was so good! I mean, it was near impossible to screw up eggs and bacon, said Saige the food critic. Sayu must have seen me gluttonously scarf down my food and chuckled to herself.

“Is it to your liking, Saige?”

Oh, god, I forgot I was in someone’s else house acting like a complete pig. I swallowed hard and answered her politely. “Yes, yes. It’s really good, Sayu.”

“Good. I spent years perfecting my craft,” she joked. A couple more seconds passed of us eating in silence. Yukio showing up sooner rather than later would have been pretty nice, but that was just my own opinion.

I thought I could have sworn I heard him open his door and make his way downstairs, but that was followed by the sound of another door shutting. Then, I heard the shower. Seriously? A shower! I was going to be stuck here alone with his sister for a while longer? Ugh, fine, I could make small talk by myself. What was a good starting topic? Boys? Food? The weather?

But before I could open my mouth, Sayu stopped me. “I swear to God, if you ask me about how lovely the weather is, I’m going to throw my plate at you.” She can read minds too!?

“What? No, I wasn’t going to say anything like that,” I frantically lied. “I just wanted to mention how great your food is. I wish I could cook half this well.”

“…you’re telling me you don’t know how to make eggs?”

“…that does sound pretty stupid, doesn’t it?”

“God, if I had known Yukio was going to date a woman with no cooking skills, I would’ve pushed harder for him to learn.”

“Yukio doesn’t cook?” I asked.

“Not that he doesn’t want to, but lord knows he can’t. Christmas morning, about seven years ago, almost caught the house on fire. About five years ago, birthday dinner, actually did catch the house on fire. And the only thing we could salvage were the burnt remains of grilled cheese and hopefully tomato soup. He’s not allowed in a kitchen anymore.”


Edited: 15.02.2019

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