In the Morning, I'll Say Hello - Chapter 54

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

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

Chapter 54




Ishihara, Hatsue, Yuka and Eriko are at a table in a family-style restaurant, with their menus up, looking at what to order. Eriko is sitting next to Yuka, but isn’t paying any attention to her, she’s looking sullenly out the window, not even looking at her menu.


Hatsue: “Wasn’t that couple in the movie so cute? Do you think that’s the sort of movie your sister would like?”


Yuka nods 'yes.'


Ishihara: “Oh, you have a sister Kiyoura-san?”


Yuka nods 'yes.'


Hatsue: “Suzu-san much older than you is she? Well, she’s an adult anyway. Eriko-chan, have you decided what to get? I’m having trouble deciding.”


Eriko is still looking out the window not paying attention.


Hatsue: “Eriko...chan?”


Eriko: “Oh, um...I’m not really hungry.”


Yuka looks over at her concerned, she starts to lean over to put a hand on Eriko’s arm, but thinks back to the moment in the theater when Eriko took her hand away and decides not to reach out to Eriko. Eriko turns to see her pull her hand back.


Eriko (to herself): “Are you just trying to be nice? Or do you mean something more? I just don't know what to do."


Eriko turns back towards the window.


Hatsue: “Um, I’ve got to go to the bathroom, I’ll be right back. Eriko-chan, will you go with me?”


Eriko: “I don’t need...”


Hatsue reaches across the table and pulls her out. Yuka has to slide out to let them pass.


Hatsue: “Don’t talk his ear off, okay Kiyoura-chan?”


Yuka beams a happy smile and nods vigorously to Hatsue who laughs as Ishihara looks on dumb-founded that Hatsue would make that sort of joke.


Ishihara (to himself): “Is it okay to joke about that? I’m sort of curious why she doesn’t talk.”


Ishihara: “ you...I mean...could I ask...”


Yuka nods a solemn, but not unkind, ‘yes’ and then points to the scar on her neck.


Ishihara: “Oh, you got hurt, is it still painful?"


Yuka shakes her head ‘no.’


Ishihara: “That’s good, but you’re voice, it won't come back?”


Yuka shrugs her shoulders in uncertainty.




In the bathroom now with Hatsue and Eriko.


Eriko: “Why'd I have to come with you?”


Hatsue is in the stall, talking through the closed door.


Hatsue: “What’s wrong with you today? I thought you would be excited to spend the day with Yuka-chan?”


Eriko: “It’s not like that.”


Hatsue: “Then what is it?”


Eriko: “We’re just friends.”


Hatsue: “Just friends, really? And you're okay with that? That’s enough?”


Eriko (quietly): “Maybe it’s too much.”


Hatsue: “What'd you say? I couldn’t hear you.”


Eriko: “Nothing, nevermind.”


Hatsue emerges from the stall and starts washing her hands.


Hatsue: “I'm confused. We picked out special clothes. You bought her the necklace for her birthday. I see the way you look at each other. She even ditched Okumura-san for you."


Eriko: “Well, maybe she shouldn’t have.”


Hatsue: “Why, you don’t think you’re good enough?”


Eriko: “She’d be better off not getting involved with me.”


Hatsue: “It’s a little late for that, don’t you think?”


Eriko: “But, you saw her when she saw that woman in the theater.”


Hatsue: “Yeah, and you should be comforting her until she works things out with Okumura-san.”


Eriko: “But what if they don't?”


Eriko (to herself): "And it's my fault she loses her best friend"


Hatsue: “That’s up to them. Maybe Yuka made a mistake missing the tournament, but that’s not your fault. You didn’t know.”


Eriko: “But what if there’s other stuff I do know.”


Hatsue: “What sort of stuff?”


Eriko: “There’s just...things...about me...”


Hatsue: “Have you remembered something?”


Eriko: “No, it’s not’s...”


Hatsue puts her hands on Eriko’s shoulders at this point to make Eriko look at her.


Hatsue: “Look at me, Eriko-chan, you are my best friend, but I can’t help you if you don’t tell me.”


Eriko (to herself): “Best friend? I have a..."


Eriko: “Okay.”


She pushes up her sleeves to show all Hatsue the new cuts, bruises and marks from the night.


Hatsue: “Oh my god, Eriko!”


Eriko: “They’re all over.”


Hatsue: "Did you do yourself."


Eriko: " least, I don't think so."


Hatsue: “And your back, those scars?”


Eriko: “Yeah...they’re really bad again today.”


Hatsue: “What happened to you?”


Eriko: “I...I don't know...I just...I just wake up like this some days, but I never remember...I can't remember...!”


She’s actually started crying at this point. Hatsue hugs her tight and Eriko allows it. They're silent for a moment.


Hatsue (to herself): “Do you really not remember or are you just blocking it out?”


Hatsue: “You're safe now. I’m so sorry I pushed you, but I’m glad you told me.”


Eriko: “It’'s the first time I’ve talked about anyone.”


Hatsue: “Here, wipe your eyes, you can’t go back out looking like that.”


Eriko wipes her eyes.


Eriko: “I really am a freak."


Hatsue: “Then we're freaks together."




In Tayama's art gallery. Aiko is being shown around by Tayama who is talking and talking, she’s not really paying attention. She does keep looking back at Hidaka (the manager) periodically. He looks up and winks at her knowingly. Other times they make eye contact he smiles or gives a peace sign. Sometimes he's at the counter, others he's walking other people around, but it's clear he's seeking our her glances just as much as she's making an effort to track his movements. Aiko and Tayama come up to one picture of a young girl.


Tayama: “This is from an artist we just picked up...”


Aiko (to herself): “ looks sort of like Yuka when she was younger, the delicate hands, the way the hair falls on her neck...”


Tayama is trying to get Aiko's attention.


Tayama: “...san...Okumura-san?”


Aiko: “Oh, I’m so sorry, what were you saying again?”


Tayama: “Maybe we should get some fresh air, I’ve talked your ear off, haven’t I?”


Aiko: “You’ve been a wonderful host.”


Tayama: “But maybe a bit boring of a date?”


Aiko is caught slightly off guard by his kindness.


Aiko: “No, I’m sorry, I didn’t mean that.”


Tayama: “It’s okay, let’s get out of here.”


Aiko: “Okay.”


As they are walking out, Hidaka asks:


Hidaka: “Hey boss, what about the party tonight at XXXX’s?”


Tayama: “Well, I’m not sure where we’ll be at that point, so please give my...”


Aiko: “Party, where?”


Tayama: “Oh, some old high-school friends of ours are getting together tonight.”


Aiko: “You went to high-school with Tayama-san?”


Hidaka: “Yeah, don’t let this guy fool you, he didn’t hire me because I have any idea about art, it was totally a favor.”


Tayama replies kindly and in jest to Hidaka.


Tayama: “Yes, and I regret it every day.”


Aiko (to herself): “They seem like really good friends.”


Hidaka: “So does that mean you’ll come?”


Aiko: “You wouldn’t mind?”


Tayama: “What about your father’s event tonight?”


Aiko: “Do I look like I give a damn what that man does?”


Hidaka: “Hahahaha, I wouldn’t want to be him!”


Tayama: “You’re sure then?”


Aiko: “Yes, it will give me a chance to meet your other friends.”




Outside the family restaurant, Hatsue, Ishihara, Eriko, and Yuka are standing around somewhat awkwardly.


Ishihara (to himself): “I don’t want this day to end, I'm only just starting to get to know Fujimaki-chan.”


Said at the same time:


Hatsue and Ishihara: “So what should we do now?”


They start laughing.


Ishihara: “Hahaha, I was worried you might be bored and want to go home.”


Hatsue: “No, I’m having fun. Eriko-chan, Yuka-chan, are you okay with staying out?”


Yuka nods 'yes.'


Eriko: “It’s fine.”


Ishihara says discretely, and yet sarcastically, to Hatsue:


Ishihara: “Is she always so agreeable?”


Hatsue: “Hahaha, she hasn’t killed you yet, so you must be doing something right!”


Ishihara: “ you think so too?”


Hatsue blushes.


Hatsue: “Yeah, I do.”


Ishihara blushes in response, they’re just looking at each other. Yuka looks at them, and gets a warm feeling, and turns to look at Eriko who is standing with her arms crossed and looking off to the side. Yuka looks at Eriko's hand, thinks about taking it in hers, but backs off. Hatsue realizing they’re out in public making moon eyes at each other, with the other two waiting:


Hatsue: “Oh, so what should we do now?”


Ishihara: “I have an idea, will you trust me?”


Hatsue: “Um, trust...sure...”


Eriko: “What is it?”


Ishihara: “You’ll have to learn to trust me too, okay?”


Eriko has a dark look in her eyes.


Eriko: “You think that’s wise?”


Ishihara: “I’m willing to risk it.”


He turns and smiles at Hatsue who blushes and smiles modestly back.


Eriko: “Fine, whatever.”




The four of them are on a train. Ishihara and Hatsue are sitting next to each other, across the way Yuka and Eriko are sitting next to each other, but there’s some space between them, Yuka is looking down, Eriko is looking off to the side, arms still crossed. Ishihara leans over to Hatsue and discretely whispers:


Ishihara: “So, I’m confused, are they friends with each other, or not?”


Hatsue: “Hmmm, it’s complicated.”


Ishihara: “Are they fighting?”


Hatsue: “Not exactly, the opposite really.”


Ishihara: "Oh?!"


Hatsue (to herself): “At least they’re aware of each other.”


The couples are standing at the train station having just gotten off, they’re at the seaside. The waves are crashing, it’s a clear day, but a bit windy. Still daylight (although as they walk it will start to get near dusk).


Hatsue: “Oh, the sea, I love the water!”


Ishihara: “I was thinking we could watch the sun set from here.”


Hatsue: “That’s a great idea! Come on, let’s go!”


Without thinking of it, she grabs his hand and starts running with a big warm smile on her face, so happy. Eriko and Yuka notice Hatsue holding his hand, are stunned, and look at each other in disbelief, then they blush as they finally make eye contact with each other and Eriko looks away.


Eriko: “I...I guess we should follow them.”


Hatsue and Ishihara are walking up ahead on the beach, talking to each other, laughing, etc... Yuka and Eriko are following a fair distance behind, next to each other, but not near each other.


Eriko (to herself): “Ha-chan looks so happy. Could I ever have that?”


As Yuka walks, she accidentally kicks up a shell. She stops and bends down to play with it. Eriko sits down on a big pile of large rocks and watches Yuka playing in the sand. Noticing her gentle little hands, her hair still done up, her long, slender neck exposed, her little ears, the necklace.


Eriko (to herself): “What is it about her? I just can’t take my eyes off her. I know I’ll only drag her down, but...she’s just so beautiful...I want...I want...”


As Yuka is playing a little crab walks up. Yuka and the crab look at each other, she starts silently laughing at it.


Eriko (to herself): “Could you ever smile that way for me? But if you knew, if you knew it all, it would crush that smile.”


Eriko closes her eyes and leans back. Some time passes. Yuka notices her resting on the rocks and goes up and sits down by her. Eriko doesn’t notice, she’s asleep now. Yuka looks at her sleeping face, at her lips, she reaches out as if to touch Eriko’s lips. But pulls her hand back. By this time the sun is starting to go down. A beautiful sunset. Hatsue and Ishihara are standing a ways away watching it. Hand in hand. We switch to Eriko’s dream:


It’s the black panels of the cave dream, there’s the faint white light in the distance.


Narration: “Where is this, where am I? It’s so cold, the air is  so stale, so hard to breathe. What’s that, a light? Can I get to it, get out into the light.”


We see ripples in dark water.


Narration: “Water, can I follow it out? Towards the light? That's right, just one hand in front of the other, keep going, don't give up.”


In the distance we hear:


A Voice: “No...........come back............”


More narration:


Narration: “Who's there? I have to get out, I have to get to them!”


A hand lifts up and there is a dark liquid dripping from it, feathers held in the hand.


Narration: “What is this? My god, what am I touching?! Get off, get off! I have to get out of here!”


The light is growing bigger, getting closer.


Narration: “Almost there, just focus on that light!”


Voices in the distance, the sound of waves in the background.


Voice: “NOOO!!! Don’t leave me!!! Don’t you dare leave me!!!”


The light is almost all enveloping now, so close to the exit.


Narration: “Just wait, I’m almost there, I can save you, I can...!”


At this Eriko wakes up screaming:


Eriko: “YUKA!!!!!”


She’s sweating and crying and startled, but there next to her on the rocks is Yuka, staring at her in disbelief. Hatsue and Ishihara come up running. Yuka reaches out and puts a hand on Eriko’s arm. Eriko reacts instinctively and pulls back, staring wide and wild-eyed at Yuka. She quickly turns her head away to look the other way unable to ear Yuka's eyes.


Hatsue: “Eriko-chan, Yuka-chan are you okay? We heard you from all the way over there?”


Eriko: “I’m...I’m was nothing...”


Eriko (to herself): “Did I really call out her name?”


Hatsue: “Are you sure?”


Yuka shrugs, equally confused.


Ishihara: “Well, it’s late, maybe we should get going?”


Ishihara (to himself): “She really is frightening? I hope Fujimaki-chan knows what she’s doing hanging out with someone like that.”


Hatsue: “That’s a good idea, it’s getting dark.”


Hatsue (to herself): “What happened? Why does Yuka-chan look like that? Please keep talking to me, even if I can’t help, I can listen.”




Tayama’s really fancy sports car pulls up in front of a dumpy concrete apartment building. Inside the car:


Tayama: “Okumura-san, are you sure you want to hang out with a bunch of my high-school friends?”


Aiko: “Why not?”


Tayama: “We could go out, get something to eat, just the two of us. There’s no reason we have to hang out at Ma-kun’s dump.”


Aiko: “This is Hidaka-san’s place?”


Aiko (to herself): “It reminds me of Yuka’s apartment.”


Tayama: “I’ve known him forever, even though we went to the same high-school, he doesn’t come from families like ours.”


Aiko: “You're point? There are plenty of good people who don’t have money.”


Tayama: “Of course, that’s not what I meant at all, just that, someone like you...”


Aiko: “Someone like me? What exactly am I like?”


Tayama: “No, no, that’s not it, you’ve got me all flustered now.”


Aiko: “I'm going in.”




Inside the apartment, there are beautiful young-adults hanging out, smoking, drinking, chatting, having fun, the door rings, a random woman goes to answer it. When she opens it there’s Tayama and Aiko.


Woman: “Kiiiii-kuuuun!”


The woman goes and drunkenly hugs Tayama right in front of Aiko before she even notices that Aiko is there.


Woman: “Oh, who are you?”


Tayama: “Miho-chan, this is Okumura-san, my date for tonight.”


Woman: “Date, oh, aren’t you lucky! Little young, though, don't you think?”


Aiko: “May I come in?”


Aiko brushes past the woman and goes in without waiting for a reply.


Hidaka: “Okumura-san! You made it, come on in, what can I get you?”


Tayama looks concernedly at the two of them hitting it off so well.


Tayama (to himself): "Do I really want her getting along with him?"




Scenes of the party going on, there are both men and women, some are making out, some smoking, lots of drinking, some dancing, some passed out. Tayama and Aiko are talking, but she’s stealing looks at Hidaka, he’s stealing looks back at her, even though he has random girls draped on him. Later, Aiko is talking to a random person along with Tayama.


Tayama: “I’m sorry Okumura-san, I have to use the bathroom, I’ll be right back.”


He gets up and leaves, the other person they were talking with moves on to another group. Aiko is sitting alone, drinking, when Hidaka comes over and sits next to her. He puts his arm around her.


Hidaka: “I’m glad you came, are you having fun?”


Aiko: “Yes, thank you for having me.”


Hidaka: “For a high-schooler, you seem to be able to hold your liquor.”


Aiko: "Impressed?"


Hidaka: “Very. So I hear that you are part of THE Okumura family.”


Aiko: “Hmmm, only since I have to be...”


Hidaka: “Hahaha, I like you, I have to say, you’re a lot of fun.”


Aiko (slightly flirtatiously): “You say that like you know me.”


Hidaka: “I’d like to get to know you better.”


Aiko: “And here I thought you were Tayama-san’s friend.”


Hidaka: “Isn’t this what friends are for?”


Aiko (to herself): "I wouldn't know."


As he's talking, he reaches into his pocket and pulls out a pill in an individual wrapper. He’s nonchalantly about to take it, when he notices Aiko looking at it.


Hidaka: “I have more, you’re welcome to try if you want?”


Right then Tayama comes back.


Tayama: “Ma-kun, what are you trying to do to me?”


Hidaka: “Hahaha, don’t worry so much boss, I was only joking.”


Tayama: “Joking or not, she’s only in high-school, and with her dad...”


Aiko: “My father has nothing to do with this, or with me! Is that all I am to you? A way to get close to my father?”


Tayama: “Hold on, I’m sorry, I didn’t mean...”


Aiko: “Whatever, I’m tired.”


Tayama: “I’ll take you home.”


Aiko: “No, I’ll call my driver. Hidaka-san, thank you for having me over.”


She gets up and leaves. Tayama confronts Hidaka.


Tayama: “We may be friends, but this isn’t settled yet.”


Hidaka: “What exactly is she to you?”


Tayama: “I don’t know yet”


Tayama goes to follow Aiko.


Hidaka: “Hmmm, interesting, I’ve never seen him like that about a girl before. This could be fun.”


Aiko is standing on the sidewalk, she puts her cell phone back in her purse (she was calling her driver) and is waiting for her town car as Tayama comes running down the stairs of the apartment building.


Tayama: “Okumura-san, wait, I’m sorry.”


Aiko: “It's fine, I’m just tired, thank you for the lovely day.”


Tayama: “Does that mean I can call you?”


Aiko: “I’m sure my father will set something up.”


The towncar pulls up. Tayama opens the door for her. She gets in.


Tayama: "I'm truly sorry about tonight."


She shuts the door and drives off leaving him standing there. As they are driving Aiko gets a phone call.


Aiko (answering the call): “Yes?”


The person on the phone talks (we don’t hear their side though).


Aiko: “Thank you for letting me know. I’ll respond with the details shortly.”


She shuts her phone, looks out the window.


Aiko: “Driver, is father’s event still going on?”


Driver: “I believe so Okumura-sama.”


Aiko: “Please take me there.”




A fancy party, Jutaro Okumura (Aiko’s dad) is the center of attention. He’s arm in arm with a beautiful young woman, schmoozing with guests. Everyone is in black-tie and evening gowns. A hush falls on the event as Aiko walks in. Her dad turns to notice as she approaches.


Aiko: "Father."


Jutaro: “I thought you were out with Tayama-san tonight?”


Aiko: “You didn’t visit this week either. Now it’s too late.”


Jutaro: “I don’t understand your meaning, or why you are even here tonight.”


Woman: “Jutaro-san, who is she?”


Jutaro: “No one, don’t mind her.”


Aiko: “Don’t mind me? Don’t mind ME?!”


Jutaro: “Have you been drinking again? Tayama-san will pay for that, I explicitly told him...”


Aiko: “Told him what?! Don’t you go near him, or me, ever again, you hear me!”


Jutaro: “Aiko! How dare you disrupt this event with your nonsense.”


Aiko: “Nonsense?! Mom died tonight and you’re here with that thing on your arm!”


Jutaro (barely restraining his anger): “You need to leave now.”


Aiko: “You can bet I’m going to leave, just like Shiori left, just like mom left!”


Aiko storms out leaving the guests stunned.


Woman: “Jutaro-san...?”


As Aiko is leaving she stops, alone in a long hallway towards the exit, she puts her hands over her eyes and sobs silently. She then stops herself, bucks up, wipes her face and walks head held high out of the building.

(to be continued...)

No comments:

Post a Comment

Remember: please talk about the work, and offer counter points to others' analyses but DO NOT ATTACK THE PERSON whose analysis you are countering. (no ad hominem comments) Thanks! <3