Saiyuu no Ryokou: The Continuing Adventures of Yuriko
The Story So Far: Midori has dragged Yuriko kicking and screaming into the age of the
Internet. She may have created a monster.
Volume 1, Issue 11
Midori was awakened by an excruciating pain in her neck. She rolled over on the sofa,
trying to escape the discomfort, but the new position was worse. Her eyes opened and she
looked around peevishly for the clock on the shelf. Its glowing red numbers proclaimed an
unreasonably late (or early) hour. With a groan, the writer sat up, massaging her neck
with one hand. Blearily, she could make out Yuriko's form silhouetted by the light from
the computer screen.
"Mhngh? Midori said. She worked her tongue around her dry mouth and tried again.
"What are you doing?"
"Nothing." Yuriko's tone belied her words. Despite the time, she seemed wide
awake. Midori stood, rubbing her eyes and tried to see past her lover. Yuri turned
slightly with a disturbing smile and closed the screen. "Really, nothing," she
assured the other woman completely unconvincingly.
"Mmm," Midori yawned. "That's why you're chortling. I understand
totally." She slipped her fingers into the blonde hair, stroking the short locks.
"It's late why haven't we gone to bed yet?"
Yuriko leaned into the writer's hand happily. "I'm sorry. I got caught up in my new
toy." She stood, slipping Midori's hand into her own. "Don't complain
it's all your fault, anyway." She yawned hugely and glanced at the clock. "Wow
it is late."
"So what was so fascinating that it kept you up so late?" Midori watched as the
singer shut the computer down.
"What else?" Yuriko laughed. "You." She turned and gathered the other
woman into her arms. "I was reading messages on a," she paused to find the right
term, "a "mailing list" - is that right? About you. The topic was,"
Yuriko smiled hugely, "whether your favorite flower now was a lily, since after
all..." she leaned down to claim a kiss from the rather rumpled writer in her arms.
Midori chuckled. "And? What was the consensus?"
"Well, after a fierce battle between the pro-lily people and the anti...with some
snide comments by the rather vocal anti-Yuriko faction..."
Holding up a hand, Midori stopped the commentary. "You know what? I don't care what
they think my favorite flower is. Let's go to bed. We both have busy days tomorrow,"
her face was dark with emotion as she spoke and her voice angry. She turned away and
headed for the bedroom.
Yuriko watched her for a moment, wondering what had upset the writer so badly, then turned
back to the computer. She counted to twenty, the followed Midori into the bedroom. The
other woman stood facing her dresser.
"I'm sorry," Midori said quietly. "I shouldn't take it so personally."
"No, I'm sorry," Yuriko shook her head. She walked up behind the other woman and
put her arms around her. "I won't tell you stuff like that any more." She leaned
her cheek against Midori's head. "I'd better not tell you that I told everyone on the
list that I've slept with you, either, huh?" Yuriko smiled as she felt Midori's
tension dissolve a little. "Or that I told the whole list really personal information
about you? I'll just keep all that to myself."
Midori turned to face the blonde, a look of amused irritation on her face. "Yuri, you
are totally insane." She slipped her arms around the blonde's waist and held on
tightly. They stood in contented silence for a few long moments, then Midori moved away to
After they had crawled into bed, gotten comfortable and were well on their way to sleep,
Midori could feel Yuri stirring against her. "So," the blonde's muffled voice
asked softly, "what is your favorite flower, anyway?"
Midori smiled a little and pressed herself against Yuriko. "Lilies," she
answered. And with that, they both fell asleep.
The next morning was foul right from the start; the air in the apartment was stifling.
Midori pulled aside a curtain and was greeted with a thick, dark atmosphere outside.
Yuriko looked over her shoulder.
"What is it?" she whined. "Forest fire? Approaching Apocalypse?"
Midori let the curtain fall back into place. "Looks like we're getting a storm or
something." She sighed and rubbed her neck. "I have a crick from sleeping on the
couch." She stood and dragged herself off to the kitchen to make much-needed coffee.
The pot was nearly full when Yuriko slumped in to join her. The blonde looked terrible.
Her skin was sallow and dark bags made her eyes look puffy. Midori handed over a cup of
coffee with a grunt.
Yuriko took the cup solemnly and sipped the hot liquid. "I hope I look better than I
feel." She set the mug down and rubbed her temples. "I slept terribly and had a
strange dream." Her sunken eyes met Midori's groggy ones. "I dreamt that I was
digitized or whatever and sucked into the computer."
Midori gave a sour smile. "I saw that movie when it came out." She picked up her
mug and walked out to the table.
Yuriko followed her. "It was a movie?"
"Yes, you turtle." Midori smiled, her face clearing of sleepiness. "It was.
For a pop idol, you don't know much about pop culture, do you?" She stroked her hand
across Yuriko's cheek. "I'm sorry you didn't sleep well. I keep trying to get the air
conditioning working, but the building's so old..."
"That's alright," Yuriko reassured the writer. "I think it'll be fine if it
rains." She swallowed a mouthful of coffee and rose. "I'd better get going, or
I'll be late." She leaned over the table, placing a kiss on Midori's forehead.
"Thank you for my going away gift I'll look forward to future
Midori smiled up at her lover. "Have a wonderful day. You start choreography today,
"Yes!" Yuriko snapped to attention, then grabbed her head with both hands.
"Ah! I mean, yes," she said with less energy. "Madame Kommandant will begin
the whipping into shape process this morning."
"Take some aspirin." Midori stood to walk Yuriko to the door.
"I will." Yuriko paused at the door and turned to face the other woman. Placing
both hands on Midori's shoulders, she squeezed gently. "I was thinking, a little last
night," she began hesitantly. "I want you to think about something
there's no rush or anything, but," Yuriko paused and took a deep breath. One hand
lifted to gesture at the apartment generally, the other gripped Midori's shoulder tightly.
"This place is kind of small, and as you said, old and my apartment, well...it's
okay, but..." Yuriko looked down into Midori's eyes. "What I'm asking is, when I
come home from the tour, I'd like us to move in together, to a place of our own."
Midori found herself swallowing hard around a lump that had formed suddenly in her throat.
Yuri's blue eyes stared at her guilelessly, a little expectant, a little hopeful, and a
little braced for rejection. Midori had lived alone and with a husband, then a lover, but
never before had she received a proposal so heartfelt. She could feel tears filling her
She opened her mouth to respond, but Yuriko stopped her with a gesture. "Don't answer
right away I really want you to think about this." She pulled Midori close in
a quick, overtight hug and practically skipped to the door.
One hand on the open door, Yuriko turned to face her lover, a smile wreathing her pale
face. "I love you."
Midori pushed the singer out the door with a smile. "I love you too now go,
you'll be late!"
Yuriko was late, a fact that was made plain to her the moment she entered the dance room.
Madame stood stiffly at the head of the room, addressing a frowning Mayumi. The little
singer glared at Yuriko, then snapped at one of the background dancers that had lingered.
Yuriko smiled at two of the female dancers who passed by her in the doorway with a
murmured greeting, then stepped in to face the combined wrath of the two women. Instead,
she found herself frozen out by Mayumi completely.
Madame Sophia, however, felt no compunction about letting Yuriko know that she had broken
a cardinal rule. Several minutes into the staccato lecture about punctuality, Yuriko
remembered that she had forgotten to take any aspirin.