Saiyuu no Ryokou: The Continuing Adventures of Yuriko

The Story So Far: Midori and Yuriko have had a long day and shared a few old secrets. They have more surprises waiting for them, though.


Volume 2, Issue 8

"Sounds in the Night"


"So?" Yuriko prompted.

"So, what?" Midori murmured into her neck.

"Not so what – so who," Yuriko nudged her lover slightly. "Don’t leave me hanging. I asked you about your family finding out about you. Or don’t you want to tell me?" She knew that Midori knew what she meant.

Midori yawned. "I’m totally exhausted. I’ll tell you, but it’s a long story. How about another time?" She yawned again, this time with an audible pop from her jaw. "Ow."

Yuriko grinned. "Okay, some other time then. Good night." She leaned over for a kiss, but Midori had rolled over and was asleep before the light was out. Yuriko contented herself with a kiss to the back of her lover’s head and smile in her direction.

As tired as she was, Yuriko did not fall asleep immediately. The strangeness of the room, the lack of city sounds outside, and the unfamiliar bed beneath her kept her awake for a little while.

She stared up at the ceiling, thinking about her life in general, and today in specific. She looked within herself for discomfort or unhappiness and was moderately surprised to find neither. It wasn’t just that Midori’s family was nice – they were, of course – but neither were they pretentious. Yuriko thought over the day’s events and nodded. These were real people; people she had already begun to like and could easily come to care for. She yawned and relaxed back onto the pillow. Yeah, she thought as sleep overtook her, and Mari would really like Misono...


Yuriko dreamed that she was getting married. Mariko walked her down the aisle and Midori waited for her at the altar, but when she arrived, it was Hachigoro, and he held out his hand to her. She hesitated for a moment, and he smiled wryly, asking her if it was okay if they lived in an experimental home. Yuriko pulled off her veil, but the entire dress came with it and now she wore a tuxedo and she danced off with Mayumi, while Midori stood by, crying.

Yuriko woke herself with a start. Her heart was pounding, her pulse loud in her ears. She took deep breaths, trying to calm her nerves...until she heard the sound. A sob. It was the same sound from within her dream. The image of Midori crying froze her limbs for a long moment.

Yuriko sat up, instinctively reaching for her lover, but the writer was fast asleep, breathing heavily. She sighed a sigh of relief – she must have imagined the sound. It might have been an owl, or some other night animal...

She heard it again. A muffled sob, followed by a long, shaky breath. It seemed to be coming from outside. Yuriko slid softly from the bed and walked to the widow. The pane was open slightly to let in the cooler night air; Yuri leaned down to look through the crack, but without her glasses everything was a blur. There might have been a figure standing under a tall pine tree, but she couldn’t be sure.

She squinted for a long moment, but there were no further sounds, and the figure that might have been there wasn’t moving. Yuriko stifled a bone-shaking yawn – there wasn’t much she could do about it, anyway. Making her way back to bed, Yuriko wrapped herself around Midori and fell into a deep, dreamless sleep.



Saiyuu no Ryokou, all characters and situations, copyright E. Friedman.

Copyright 2004, Yurikon LLC. All rights reserved.