The La-Iin Series
“The Return of Kai-Rin”
“Ah! It feels so nice out today!” Dosa-Mina exclaimed as he stretched. “What do you think, San-Kyung?”
“It’s too cold,” he said bitterly. “And would you mind explaining why you took me out? On Valentine’s Day? I know you’re up to something.”
“You might know I’m up to something, but do you know what that something is?” Dosa-Mina said playfully. “Don’t worry, it’s nothing too nefarious. I’ve just been thinking the two of us need a break. I’ve been way too stressed out and you have to deal with the cold and a lack of powers. It’s not an ideal time for us.”
“And we both have to deal with Lirako and La-Iin, I guess,” he added.
“Right. So I think we deserve this! But, you know, it’s pretty quiet downtown today. You’d think there’d be couples everywhere. It’s Valentine’s Day and a Saturday, after all. What gives?”
“Oh. My gosh. Is that who I think it is!?”
Both San-Kyung and Dosa-Mina glanced in the direction of the voice and froze. Standing a short distance away from them was a tall, bespectacled girl who looked almost like a Pureblood Normal save for her Goathoof traits. She walked up to them and stared wide-eyed at San-Kyung.
Both of them were hit with a bad feeling as soon as she did that.
“Yukkini? Is that you?” Dosa-Mina asked. San-Kyung slammed the palm of his hand against his head so hard that Dosa-Mina had to wonder if he had hurt himself.
“You know you can call me Kai-Rin, Dosa-Mina, I don’t care. Especially if San-Kyung wants to call me Kai-Rin too.” She sighed. “Oh, San-Kyung, it’s been so long! You don’t know how upset I was when you transferred from Deatrou. I never could find out what school you ended up going to after that!”
“And that’s a good thing,” he snapped.
“Sounds surprising, coming from you,” she said dreamily. San-Kyung rolled his eyes.
“Er, um, Yukkini, what are you doing downtown today anyway?”
“Oh, I was bored and sad and thinking about San-Kyung and so I decided to take a walk. Never expected I’d run into him on the street though! But him being with you isn’t actually all that surprising.” Her grin became wide. “Are you two like a thing now? Because if I lost him to you, I totally don’t care. You’re a good man, Dosa-Mina. I’m sure you treat him well.”
“Um, no. We’re not dating.” Dosa-Mina said.
“Apparently, some people don’t change,” San-Kyung muttered bitterly.
“I’m surprised. I would have thought so. Though I can say I totally approve if it ever does happen! You’re the only one I’d be willing to lose San-Kyung to.”
“Stop treating me like an object! Get out of my sight before I burn you to a crisp!”
“Oh, you said some people don’t change, and I suppose that applies to you too,” Kai-Rin said cheerfully. “So hotheaded, just as you were in junior high! Perhaps a little more violent, but as far as I’m concerned, not changing is a good thing. It means I’m fully justified in still liking you.”
“…still?” Dosa-Mina questioned. Kai-Rin nodded. “It’s a little hard to get over a crush if the person you like disappears from your life suddenly before you can really get a chance to talk to him. Not like you two would understand, apparently.”
“So you say,” Dosa-Mina said.
“All you ever did at Deatrou was stalk me,” San-Kyung said. “I had to deal with people mocking me and him on all sides because he’s too affectionate for his sake, and then I had to deal with you being a disgusting stalker. I’m glad we didn’t stay there the whole time.”
“I wasn’t too much of a stalker,” Kai-Rin said innocently, twisting a finger around in her hair. Dosa-Mina glanced away and San-Kyung grit his teeth. “Oh, God. I wish I’d known I was going to run into you today. I would have procured some chocolate. Maybe there’s some in the area?”
“I don’t do chocolate,” he snapped. Dosa-Mina’s face twitched.
“Well, I’m sure there’s something else I could give you to supplement.”
“How about getting out of my sight!”
Kai-Rin sighed. “I love that frustrating, stubborn part of you too, San-Kyung, but today it’s getting on my nerves. Sure if we went to the same school I’d still follow you around most places you went, but I have mellowed out a bit since our days in junior high. I’d know when to stop and I wouldn’t latch onto you like Dosa-Mina does. No offense, mind you.”
“I didn’t think so,” Dosa-Mina said dryly. “Look, it’s nice to reconnect and all, but we came out here for a bit of a break. And I don’t think San-Kyung counts meeting up with you again as part of a break…”
“Oh please, humor me for just a little bit?” Kai-Rin plead.
“Well, I suppose if you won’t, I do have great following-you skills.” Kai-Rin stood behind them. “Anyway, I did figure out you didn’t like me stalking you. I’d never change any part of my personality for you, but I realized stalking is kind of an annoying habit and also illegal. So I’d just follow you around all puppy-dog-like if we went to the same school now, a-la how he does,” she said, motioning towards Dosa-Mina. “Alas, my parents wouldn’t let me transfer to whatever school you go to now anyway. They’re perfectly happy with me attending Hendoh High.”
“Hendoh High?” Dosa-Mina questioned. “Isn’t that a species study high school?”
“Yes, but we do learn other subjects there too,” Kai-Rin said. “Species study is just a focal point. I’m not really interested in pursuing a career in that though, I’d rather be a novelist. I figure learning about the species will help me accurately portray powers in my books though!”
“Don’t humor her, Dosa-Mina, or else she won’t leave us alone.”
“Sorry. I’ve just heard a lot about Hendoh High before.” He glanced at Kai-Rin over his shoulder. “So jealous…”
San-Kyung turned around to face her and she crashed into him. She backed away, her face flushed pink. San-Kyung’s eyes narrowed.
“Look, Yukkini, I can’t stand you. I couldn’t stand you at Deatrou and I can’t stand you now. I may have met girls since you who are much more annoying but you’re still up there with the people I consider worse than the majority, so get out of my sight before I give you third-degree burns. You should be thankful I’m even talking to you this civilly!”
He turned away from her. “Because as far as I’m concerned, you’re a piece of trash from my past.”
“…that’s hurtful, San-Kyung,” Kai-Rin said quietly. “I’d mull on that more but getting back on topic, what do you mean met girls who are more annoying than me? Don’t tell me there’s a girl who rivals my affections, because I won’t stand for that.”
“None of your business! You have nothing to do with my life.”
“You could be a little nicer to her, you know,” Dosa-Mina said.
“Well, whether that means girls who couldn’t stand you or girls who stalk you as I did, I have nothing I can do about it for I don’t even know what school you go to now,” she sighed. “And I have no chocolate for you, and you still hate me as much as you did before…so while I’m happy, this meeting is also kind of bittersweet.”
“Sorry, Yukkini,” Dosa-Mina said. “Hopefully the rest of the day is good for you, I guess?”
“You guess. Not that I blame you for saying that, I’m sure seeing your best friend’s stalker again isn’t the most pleasant re-meeting…ugh, that’s not right,” she mumbled. “Anyway, I guess I’m glad you at least still live in Bledger. I’ll drop it now, but humor me for a couple more things.”
“Jump, Dosa-Mina,” San-Kyung hissed.
“Are you kididng me? I can’t! She goes to a species study school, she’ll catch on right away.”
“First off, here’s my contact info,” she said, handing him a piece of paper with quickly-scrawled Vaellis on it. “Just in case you ever change your mind. And here’s a hug.” She hugged him tight before he could move away. “No return present on White Day necessary, I just needed that.”
San-Kyung lit both hands with fire.
“…I get your point. Okay, you two, it was nice to see you! Happy Valentine’s Day, I wish you both luck in your future relationship…with others or with each other…and now, arrivaderci!”
Before San-Kyung could close in on her she trotted away at a high speed, waving once more to them.
“Did you ever get the feeling she really wants us to be in a relationship?” Dosa-Mina asked.
“I wonder if that’d make her leave us alone,” he scoffed, extinguishing his flames. “But we’ll probably never see her again, so what does it matter?”
“Did you burn the contact info?”
“What did you think I’d do, keep it?”
As they walked forward, Dosa-Mina thrust a wrapped present toward him.
“Happy Valentine’s Day, by the way,” he said casually.
“Uh…thanks,” he said, taking the present.
“Aw, you’re still so adorable, San-Kyung.”
As the two passed by Malicerie on their way to Dosa-Mina’s house, the sound of someone running up behind them startled them.
“Did you think I had forgotten this year?”
Both flinched, but San-Kyung groaned when he heard the voice.
La-Iin flew over the boys and handed San-Kyung a container filled with liquid. San-Kyung stared at it in confusion.
“It’s liquid chocolate. I wouldn’t be that nasty to you, San-Kyung.” She flew away, yelling something he couldn’t understand, though he was sure it was “Happy Valentine’s Day”.
“Well, you certainly weren’t forgotten this year. Too bad Yukkini didn’t have any chocolate for you.”
San-Kyung sighed. “I can’t deal with this day…”