In the Morning, I'll Say Hello - Chapter 53

 "In the Morning, I'll Say Hello" is a yuri comic I wrote. Since I can't draw, I'm posting the scripts here for your pleasure. Enjoy!

"In the Morning, I'll Say Hello" - by Jaime Lustig

Chapter 53

"Double Date"



Megumi and Tetsu are having breakfast in the kitchen. All of a sudden they hear a scream. Tetsu’s eyes go wild and he rushes up the stairs into Hatsue’s room.


Tetsu: “Ha-chan, what is it?! Are you okay? I'll kill him!”


There’s Hatsue sitting in a pile of clothes looking at him like he’s nuts. Megumi comes up nonchalantly behind Tetsu.


Megumi: “Tetsu-kun, you can go now, I’ll take it from here.”


Tetsu: “Are you sure everything is okay?”


Megumi: “Yes, I think Ha-chan just needs a woman’s touch.”


Tetsu: “If you say so."


Megumi goes and sits down next to Hatsue and the pile of clothes. She picks something up.


Megumi: “This is cute.”


Hatsue: “Arghhhhhh!!!!”


Hatsue collapses onto Megumi’s lap. Megumi strokes her hair.


Megumi: “Let me guess, a date today?”


Hatsue: “Tell me what I should do!”


Megumi: “All of your clothes are cute, what are you so worried about?”


Hatsue: “It’s not the clothes.”


Megumi: “He’s special to you, isn’t he?”


Hatsue: “I...I think so...”


Megumi: “After everything you’ve been through, he must be worth it.”


Hatsue: “How can you be so sure?”


Megumi: “Because you're being brave. He would have to be special for you to put yourself out there this way.”


Hatsue: “I wish I was brave. I ended up asking Eriko-chan and Yuka-chan to come too.”


Megumi: “That doesn’t change a thing. Now, which of these are you going to use to make him crazy?”


They start laughing together.




Aiko’s room, It’s dark, the curtains are still drawn. She’s asleep in her bed. A knock on the door.


Housekeeper: “Okumura-sama? Okumura-sama, your breakfast is ready.”


Aiko rolls over in bed away from the door. There is only the faintest crack of light from through the curtains splashing across her face. She sighs heavily.


The dining room. Aiko enters, dressed in casual yet high-end clothing, and sits down. The staff brings in her food. She ignores the woman other than a brief little head nod.


As she is finishing eating, a personal secretary type person enters.


Man: “Okumura-sama, may I inquire as to your agenda today?”


Aiko: “You're very attentive today."


Man: "I am at your service."


Aiko (to herself): "Of course you are."


Aiko: "I am going out shortly.”


Man: “I shall have XXXX bring the car around then.”


Aiko: “There is no need. My ride will be picking me up at eleven.”


Man: “Very good. Shall we expect you home for dinner.”


Aiko: “That remains to be seen.”


Man: “I shall have the staff prepare dinner in case then.”


Aiko: “Thank you.”


The man bows and leaves the room. Aiko silently says thanks for the meal (“gochisousama”). Then looks off to the side in a sign of resignation, sighs, and closes her eyes.


Aiko (to herself): "You shouldn't object to today's outing, father."




Yuka is digging through her drawers and closet while Suzu lies on Yuka's bed with her knees pulled up and in, and arms in the air playing with one of Yuka’s stuffed animals.


Suzu: “So Hatsue-chan is actually going on a date with a guy? Is he okay?”


Yuka turns and nods 'yes' vigorously.”


Suzu: “That’s good. I don’t know a lot, but I really do worry about her. Anyway, what about you? Excited to go on a date with Eriko-chan?”


Yuka’s eyes open wide, she turns slowly to face Suzu, both stunned and blushing and puts our her hands and waves them in front of her manically to signal: 'No, no, it’s not like that.'


Suzu: “Fine, whatever you say. It’s good of you two to go with Hatsue-chan to make her feel safer.”


Yuka confidently nods 'yes' once to this to signal: 'that's exactly what we're doing.'


Suzu (to herself): “You can't fool me. I'm gonna have some fun first!”


Suzu: “So then, when will you be getting a boyfriend? Surely there must be someone who’s caught your eye?”


Yuka shakes her head “no” to this.


Suzu: “No one? Well, it must be hard being at an all-girls school. I guess you don’t really have a chance to meet anyone that way.”


Yuka turns back to picking out clothing, blushing slightly, and pulls some clothes up to her face to partly hide it.


Suzu: “Okay, let me see what you picked out?”


Yuka comes over with her clothes. Suzu holds them up to her


Suzu: “Looks good, well, have fun not going on a date!"


Yuka makes a face, Suzu gets up to leave. As she’s doing so, Yuka pulls at the back of her shirt stopping her. Suzu turns around. Yuka is holding out a hair brush and blushing.


Suzu (to herself): “God, you’re so cute.”


Suzu: “Let's get you ready!”




Eriko in bed, we start with just a close-up of her face, eyes closed, still asleep, but wincing as if in pain. Her eyes slowly open to the bleary world.


Eriko: “ hurts...”


We pull back to see her lying on her stomach in bed, the sheets a mess, mostly off, but just covering her butt. Her clothes are torn, in just a few shreds leaving her mostly naked. The scars on her back are raised and there is dried blood in the sheets, her whole body is bruised and cut and bloodied. She struggles to sit up, holding her head, her hair draping over her hands.


Eriko (to herself): “I should have had been so long, it was too good to be true...I got complacent, and now this, today, of all days...Dammit!”


She looks at the blood in the sheets.


Eriko (to herself): “I’ll have to soak these in the bathroom. Not that it matters, it never really comes out.”


Eriko in the bathroom, rinsing the sheets, the blood pooling on the floor and swirling into the drain.


Eriko (to herself): “What am I going to do? How can I even think of dragging her any further into this life of mine? Stupid Eriko, stupid!”


She’s in her room now, trying to put on a bra, the straps rubbing against her scars.


Eriko: “Arghhh...”


She slowly, achingly, pulls on the clothing that she had chosen. When she looks at herself in a mirror, she sees all the new cuts and bruises on her arms and face.


Eriko (to herself): “I can’t wear this, not now. I’m sorry Ha-chan, after all the trouble you went through to help me pick this out.”




A bench in a park. Eriko is sitting, wearing a hoodie and jeans, not very stylish, a little loose fitting and frumpy, her hair plainly down like normal, in her face, partly obscuring it. She’s watching people as they walk by. A couple walks by, in their own little world chatting.


Eriko (to herself): “Is that what it's supposed to look like? Could we ever be a normal couple like that? Is that really what I want...with Kiyoura-san?”


Hatsue is running up towards Eriko. Hatsue has this incredibly cute, fashionable outfit on, her glasses are gone, her hair is out of the braids and back to being long and fully-done up. It’s like the Hatsue from the begining when we first met her. Eriko is a bit shocked.


Hatsue: “Eriko-chan! Eriko-chan!”


Hatsue stopping and out of breath


Hatsue: “I’m so sorry, did you wait long?”


Eriko: “No...I’m the only one look...really...”


Hatsue: “Really?”


Eriko: “...cute.”


Eriko blushes and Hatsue hugs her tightly, Eriko winces in pain when Hatsue squeezes around her back (unknowingly touching the scars).


Hatsue: “Do you think he’ll think so?”


Eriko: “I’ll kill him if he doesn’t...But I might also kill him if he does."


Hatsue laughs kindly at this. But then Hatsue notices Eriko’s clothes aren’t what she had picked out.


Hatsue: “What happened to the outfit you picked out?”


Eriko: “I...I’m sorry...I had...second thoughts.”


Hatsue: “But you looked so cute in it.”


Eriko: “I just...couldn’t.”


Eriko is looking away as she says this. Hatsue, looking kindly towards her, asks:


Hatsue: “Did something happen?”


Eriko: “No...not really...I mean...”


Right then Eriko’s eyes get big and she stops mid sentence and Hatsue turns to see Yuka standing there, unbelievably cute...almost beautiful...totally done up, her hair up showing her long slender neck with the necklace (the gift from Eriko) prominently displayed. She almost looks like an adult, radiant. Hatsue pushes Eriko forward.


Eriko: “Um...good...morning.”


Yuka lets out a big smile. Eriko notices the necklace.


Eriko (to herself): “The necklace, she’s wearing it.”


Eriko’s eyes go up from the necklace to the small scar on her neck, suddenly Eriko has a wincing pain and darkness. She grabs at her head with one hand.


                Eriko: "Nghhhh."


Hatsue: “Eriko!?”


Yuka is reaching a hand out, making a worried expression. Recovering, Eriko says:


Eriko: “I’m okay, it’s nothing...I just...woke up with a headache...that’s all.”


Yuka pulls her reaching hand back.


Hatsue: “Well, Yuka-chan, you look beautiful! Doesn’t she Eriko-chan?”


Eriko blushing.


Eriko: “, umm, where’s your friend?”


Hatsue: “Ishihara-kun texted me to say he was running late.”


Eriko: “He didn’t walk you? You live so close?”


Hatsue: “I uh, wouldn’t let him.”


Yuka takes Hatsue's hands in hers in a sign of strength/solidarity.


Eriko: “Well, we’re here for you...unless you really do want me to kill him for you?”


Eriko is slyly looking past Hatsue as she said that.


Ishihara: “Oh, maybe I shouldn’t be here?”


Hatsue turns around not realizing that Ishihara had arrived.


Hatsue: “Ishihara-kun?”


Ishihara: “Fujimaki-chan, you look...beautiful!”


Eriko: “You said that once before.”


Ishihara: “Well...she does!”


Hatsue: “It’s not too much?”


Ishihara: “NO! But, you’re always cute!”


He’s blushing fiercely. She’s blushing back. Yuka is beaming and looking back and forth at them and Eriko. Eriko is sighing and resignedly looking off to the side while this little admiration fest goes on. Yuka starts quietly pushing Eriko away from the happy couple to give them some space.


Eriko: “Hey...what?”


Hatsue: “Oh, sorry, um, what should we do today? We didn’t really make any plans?”


Ishihara: “How about karaoke?”


Yuka is looking down (not necessarily sad, more of a 'don't mind me' type look), but Eriko looks mad. Ishihara looking back and forth between their faces trying to understand. Hatsue starts laughing.


Hatsue: “Hahahaha, Yeah, maybe not with those two!”


Ishihara: “I’m sorry Kiyoura-san, I wasn’t being sensitive.”


Yuka waves her hands in front of her like “don’t worry about it.”


Hatsue: “So what should we do? Eriko-chan?”


Eriko: “Um...whatever is fine.”


Ishihara: “What about a movie?”


Hatsue: “Eriko-chan, Yuka-chan?”


Yuka nods 'yes' vigorously. Eriko leans in to quietly speak to Hatsue.


Eriko: “You know, it’ll be dark in there...”


Hatsue: “Maybe that will be good for both of us?”


Eriko (shocked and blushing): “Wh...what?!”


Ishihara is completely oblivious to what Hatsue and Eriko are whispering about and talks to Yuka.


Ishihara: “There’s this great new mecha anime that I’ve been dying to see...”


All three girls just tilt their heads in wonderment and make a funny expression that this is what he’d suggest on a date.


Ishihara: “Um, why don’t you pick the movie?”




A fancy penthouse restaurant overlooking the city. Lunchtime on a beautiful fall day. Aiko and her date (the young man, Tayama, we met with her father in the previous chapter) are eating. It’s a very elegant restaurant. He’s in a suit, she’s in a very elegant, straight dress. She looks slightly older than her age dressed this way.


Kijuro Tayama: “...investing in art for some time now. Would you be interested in seeing some of his works in our gallery?”


Aiko: “I didn’t know your family owned a gallery?”


Tayama: “Actually, it’s more of a hobby of mine, but my father puts up with it, thinks it’s good for me to learn business by running my own small company. Truthfully, it’s a way for me to get at the artists before they become successful. I’ve built up quiet a personal collection that way.”


Aiko: “Is that so?”


Tayama: “You’re welcome to come over to my place and see my private collection any time, Okumura-san.”


Aiko (to herself): "Not a very subtle pickup line."


Aiko: “Yes, sometime."


Tayama: “I have to say, despite your...reputation, you seem quite a bit more refined, I’m finding it hard to believe you’re still in high-school.”


Aiko: “That's the second time you've mentioned my so-called reputation.”


Tayama: “I don’t believe there are many secrets between our families.”


Aiko: “Is that so? I did not realize our parents were close. Well, reputations exist for a reason, do they not?”


She’s making a vixen-like face at him, indicating that this date will go places. Tayama holds up a glass of champagne to which she holds up hers and they clink.


Tayama: “Touché. If this s lunch, I can't wait to see what our first dinner will be like."




At the movies, in the theater, the four are headed down the aisle. Eriko is lagging behind the other three awkwardly. Yuka goes in to the seats first, Ishihara is just about to follow her when Hatsue realizes:


Hatsue (to herself): “Oh no, if he sits there, then Eriko won’t be able to sit next to Yuka. I’ve got to do something.”


Hatsue fake trips and is about to fall, Eriko is about to reach out to catch her but Ishihara steps up and steadies her.


Ishihara: “Are you okay?”


Hatsue: “I’m so sorry. I must have tripped.”


Hatsue catches Eriko’s eyes and motions with her head for Eriko to go in next.


Hatsue (to herself): “Go in, go in, stupid Eriko!”


Eriko points to herself and Hatsue motions again to go in. Eriko sits down but as she leans back into the seat her back, with the fresh scars, it's painful and she grimaces from the contact. Yuka notices this and reacts. Eriko puts up a hand to stop her.


Eriko: “I’m’s nothing.”


Eriko and Yuka are sitting next to each other, Then Ishihara, then Hatsue on the end. Ishihara is staring straight ahead so as not to look at Eriko who he's sitting next to.


Ishihara (to himself): “How did I end up next to Arishima-san? She really might kill me if I try to get any closer to Fujimaki-san.”


Eriko is giving a death stare to Ishihara.


Eriko (to herself): “If you touch her, I’ll kill you!”


Yuka taps Eriko on the shoulder, causing Eriko to startle and be sort of defensive as she turns to Yuka. Yuka smiles and holds out the box of candy to offer some to Eriko. Eriko relaxes a bit.


Eriko: “Oh, um, no thank you.”


Hatsue (to herself): “Geez Eriko, get with it already, what’s wrong with you today?”


The lights go down and the movie starts. All four are sitting sort of stiffly in their seats, no one has their arms on the arm rests but are keeping them tightly into their bodies to avoid contact. The light from the film is painted in a chiaroscuro-like way across their faces. Eriko subtly looks at Yuka in this light, seeing the way her small ears and long thin neck are shown with her hair done up.


Eriko (to herself): “She really Her skin, and those long eyelashes...”


Yuka turns and catches Eriko looking at her, Eriko blushes and turns back to the movie. Yuka subtly smiles to herself and moves her arm onto the armrest between them. Eriko notices her hand there.


Eriko (to herself): “Her hands are so small, not at all like a little kid's hand, but delicate...I want to...touch them...ahhh, I’m sick, what am I thinking? She’s just a friend, and we’re both girls, and there’s no way she could feel this same way, and with these things that keep happening to me...”


Her head is spinning. She closes her eyes and takes a deep breath.


We see scenes from the movie, it’s a romantic movie between a typical young-adult couple (man and woman). Scenes from that couple at dinner, on dates, kissing...Eriko starts to imagine the scenes with her and Yuka instead (she’s not asleep, sort of day-dreaming) – they’re walking, hand in hand in a park, they’re sharing a dinner, they’re holding each other and looking in each other’s eyes, they’re about to kiss...


Without realizing it, as she’s having these fantasies, Eriko puts her hand on top of Yuka’s on the arm rest. Yuka turns her hand palm up to intertwine her fingers with Eriko’s, but at this, it jolts Eriko out of her dreams and into the world. She pulls her heand away into her lap, blushing, but stone-faced at the same time. Yuka is left shocked, looking at her (Eriko is still just staring at the screen). Yuka sadly withdraws her hand from the arm rest and turns back to the movie, there’s a slight tear forming in her eye.


Eriko (to herself): “What am I doing? But after last night, how can I even think about these things with her?”




The four of them are walking out of the theater.


Ishihara: “...wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be, the acting was pretty good.”


Hatsue: “I mean, I know there weren’t any fighting robots or anything...”


Ishihara: “Hahahaha, no, it’s good for me to see different things, besides, I’m glad it was something you liked.”


They’re blushing and smiling at each other as they talk.


Eriko (to herself): “I'm happy for you...”


We see a well-dressed young woman from behind with long dark hair. It looks like it could be Aiko. Yuka stops in her tracks and notices this person. Eriko almost walks into Yuka who has stopped short.


Hatsue: “Yuka-chan, are you okay?”


But before she can answer, she’s already left them and is running up towards the person, grabbing the back of their shirt. But as the woman turns around it’s clear that it’s not Aiko. Hatsue comes up.


Hatsue: “I’m so sorry, my friend thought you were someone else, please excuse us.”


Woman: “No problem, have a good day.”


Hatsue (with a slight bow): “Thank you.”


Yuka is looking down, sullen and defeated.


Hatsue: “I'm starving, let’s get something to eat.”


Eriko (to herself): “Is it really my fault they still aren’t talking? Why should I care?”


She looks at Yuka who is looking sad as they are walking.


Eriko (to herself): “But...she looks so pitiful...I did this to her, didn’t I? And I selfishly wanted more from can I now?"





The door to a spacious, well lit art gallery. The front that faces the street is floor to ceiling glass letting in beautiful light. In walks Aiko and Tayama. The manager behind the counter makes a remark to a female assistant:


Masaaki Hidaka: “Who’s that coming in with the boss?”


Woman (assistant): “Don’t know, but she looks like trouble.”


Hidaka: “Yeah, the sort of trouble I like.”


Woman: “Probably best to keep away from the boss’s woman.”


Hidaka: “Hey boss, what brings you by today?”


Tayama: “Okumura-san, this is Hidaka-san, he manages this gallery for me.”


Hidaka (to himself): “Okumura? Not, like, THE Okumura? It couldn’t be?”


Hidaka: “It’s a pleasure to meet you. Are you looking for anything in specific?”


Tayama: “Actually, she’s here with me, just to look around.”


Hidaka (to himself): “Got it boss!”


Hidaka takes Aiko’s hand, and gently kisses it as he says:


Hidaka: “Please, let me know if there is anything I can do for you.”


Aiko, catching his eyes in hers as he is pulling up from the kiss.


Aiko: “A pleasure to meet you, I am in your care.”

Tayama clears his throat.


Tayama: “Like we were talking about in the car, we have several works by the young up-and-coming street artist XXXXX-kun. Shall, we?”


Aiko: “Of course.”


She briefly looks back over her shoulder at Hidaka.


Woman: “Yes, trouble, definitely.”


Hidaka: “I’d better start looking for a new job then.”


Woman: “You’re impossible.”

(to be continued...)

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