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What if the one person you thought you could trust, killed the one person you've always loved? Can a forner lover help lead you to true love, or true destruction?




A Lesson From The Past

Mimi sat up in her bed; she rubbed her eyes thinking that she was seeing things. A ghostly haze floated slightly above the window directly across from her. She wanted to scream again, but she couldn't move, much less make a sound. She knew that she had to be dreaming, but this night had been so strange and everything seemed so real. The sound of her name brought a silent scream to her lips.

"Mimi."

The sound was like a thundercloud had just erupted and she jumped. Her whole body was physically shaking; she didn't know what to do. Was this a trick? Yet, she knew that voice. She rememebered that voice. She loved that voice.

"Yamato?" she whispered.

The words were barely audible but it had stirred the ghostly apparition as it began to descend and move towards the bed. Mimi looked on in horror as it came closer. She suddenly noticed that the room was ice cold. She trembled with fear, she was finding it harder and harder to breath. With each erratic breath that she drew, a puff of cold air was emitted from her small pale lips. As the cloud grew nearer, the stench of death grew stronger. Again, Mimi was greeted with the eerie sound of her own name.

"Mimi Tachikawa..."

This time she was positive that it was Yamato's voice. The cloud grew nearer still. It was almost in touching distance. Mimi managed to move back against the backboard of the bed to distance herself from the putrid smell. However, the cloud kept coming and now it had begun to wrap itself around her cold flesh. The last thing that Mimi remembered before everything went black was the soft but somewhat menacing voice that seemed to be taunting her.

"Mimi, my dear, did you miss me?"

**********

Joe awoke with a start. His head throbbed. As he began to slowly orientate himself, he started to recall the dream he had. It had been so real, but he knew that it had to have been a nightmare brought on by all of the stress that he had been under and Mimi's nagging didn't help matters much either. He couldn't wait to see her, he was really going to give her a piece of his mind.


Joe slowly slid off the bed and walked to the bathroom. He felt as if he had been drugged or something…which would explain the dreams. He couldn't put it past anyone in this house, hell with Mimi trying everything in her power to get at his daughter. It had been four years simnce thye had been friends, They were best friends. Things were different now. She made things different now.

He had been her best friend for years, confiding in her his darkest secrets, and she hers. They never kept anything from each other. All secrets were known. They were bosom buddies. That is until Mimi kept the most important secret of their lives to herself. he did the most unthinkable crime imaginable. he kept his on a ecret. he manipulated him, and lied to him, and for that he could never forgive.

It was almost humorous to imagine in the first place. He, and MImi a a couple. Let alone lovers. ometimes he would forget that they ever even made love, but then he'd look into the yes of his beautiful daughter, and see he was proof of that. It wan't that they weren't consenting adults when it happened.. It was that they both were in a very serious problem when it happened. "It", was how he referred to what they did. One, once-in-a-lifetime tryst, landed him into a hell of a lot of trouble.

They were both pining for people already attached with others. He for Sora, and she for Matt, The problem was, at the time, they were already involved with either Tai or Jun. No one saw that coming. They decided to scheme together. The thought of the most passive members of their social clique scheming against the rest of them was very strange indeed. At leat at twenty-six, and twenty-four they could say some things were achieved. They did get a beautiful daughter out of it.

Meiko was sleeping downstairs, in the lower part of the house. At 26, he already he still lived at home with his father, and brother. That would seem quite pathetic save for the fact that they lived in an enormous apartment, with all the perks.. The Kido family finally recieved their dream home. His father and brother were both top rated physicians. They finally managed to have enough money to move into a larger home. He supposed being rich did have awesome advantages. This of course made him look worse in the eyes of Mimi. That didn't matter anymore. She ruined everything. They could have still been friends had she told the truth.

As Joe approached the bathroom sink, he stumbled over one of his slippers on the bathroom floor. He shrugged it off and began to run some water. He cupped his hands together and lowered his face to the sink. The water was refreshingly cold in his hands as he began to splash his face with it to wake him up from his stupor. Reaching for the towel rack, he grabbed a washrag to dry himself off. He raised his head to look at himself in the mirror. His eyes were a bit blood shot and he sure looked like a sorry sack if he ever saw one. Looking away, he tried in vain to find his comb that he was always misplacing.

"Damn, it was right here last night," he muttered aloud.

Once again, he looked in the mirror at himself. Then he suddenly remembered that it was on the shelf in the medicine cabinet. Opening the mirror door to the cabinet up he found it. Smiling to himself, he reached for the comb. Suddenly as if a big gust of wind had blown the mirror shut, Joe found himself narrowing escaping what could have been serious injury.

"What the…" He began, but he never finished the sentence.

There staring at him in the mirror was Yamato. He was covered with dry, crusted, black blood and what he could see of his face resembled something that looked as if a rat had been chewing on it for some time. Yet, he knew that it was Yamato. The face smiled at him with a cruel smirk spread across it's half decomposed lips. Joe stared back in a state of shock. Then as suddenly as it had appeared the face was gone and the only face staring back at Joe was his own. Joe turned from the mirror and began to run from the room, this time stumbling on his own two feet. He hit the floor with a loud thud.

The next thing he knew he was listening to Jim as he was pulling him up off the floor.

"What is going on Joe? Have you been drinking?" He snarled as he brought him to his feet.

"Jim, you know I don't drink.." He replied softy.

"I know little bro, but that was before. You are acting strange.."

Then he saw his face. His face was a pasty white and the only word he could think of to describe the look in his eyes was terror.

"What is it Joe?" Jim replied, his tone turning to genuine concern now.

"Are you sick? Dear Lord Joe, you look as if you just seen a ghost," He replied as he eased him into bed.

Jim went to get some wet washrags from the other room and when he returned Joe had found enough time to slightly gather his composure to tell his brother that he was fine and that he was just feeling under the weather. He explained the fall with a remark about how he felt so weak and dizzy and he continued by feeding him a line that he must be coming down with the flu.

Because his father was away for a few days, Joe asked Jim to make arrangements with Mimi to come and pick up their daughter for the day. When Jim had finally finished on the phone, he came up to his room to tell him that Mimi would be over in a couple of hours, as she too was apparently feeling a bit under the weather. Jim assured him that Meiko would be fine and that he would watch over her. He insisted that Joe should get some rest and after some arguing, he finally agreed to try to get some sleep if he swore that he would wake him when Mimi arrived.

*******

Mimi had spent a wonderful afternoon and evening with Meiko. However, it was getting late and she knew that her sleepy eyed daughter couldn't take much more activity. Mimi didn't want the day to end, in all truthfulness; she didn't want to see the night begin. Suddenly she had a great idea.


"Hey Mei Mei, how about you and mommy have a little campout right here in the living room? Wouldn't that be fun?"

"Yeah," Meiko shouted as he began to jump around.

Mimi smiled to herself, this was perfect she thought, now she didn't have to sleep alone and she didn't have to be in her bedroom. It was an excellent plan. She couldn't have been happier that Joe was sick as a dog. She chuckled to herself, what a deal Joe is feeling miserable and now I can celebrate twice as much because I have Meiko with me tonight as well. Mimi was so ecstatic that she forgot Mimi was in the room. She rose to her knees on the floor where she had been playing with Will.

"Thank you God for making Joe sick," she proclaimed, as her smile grew even larger.

Mimi looked over at the small girl who was tugging on her shirt sleeve.

"Why are you so happy that daddy's sick? That's very, very mean," Meiko said as she pouted her lip, looking as if she were going to burst out in tears any second.

Mimi knew that she had to think fast; she couldn't believe that she had just said that aloud. She had just been so happy with the turn of events.

"Oh honey, you must have heard mommy wrong, I was praying for daddy not to be sick anymore."

She hated lying and manipulating her this way, but she didn't know what else to do. Meiko looked at her inquisitively.

"Are you sure," she said in the most innocent voice she had ever heard.

"Yes,"

Mimi said feeling extremely guilty and almost ready to cry herself. She hated Meiko's father, but there was no reason to bad mouth him in front of his daughter. Satisfied that she had duly fooled her child, she changed the subject back to the campout.

"Come on Meiko, let's get ready for our campout!" Mimi shouted.

Will immediately smiled, forgetting all that had just taken place, and ran after Mimi as she headed for the other room.

*********

Joe had been sleeping for about five hours when Jim woke him to eat his dinner. Jim was very pleased that his brother looked so much better, yet no matter how hard he tried to get him to talk about his behavior earlier, he wouldn't say a word.

"I sure wish Mei Mei was here"

Jim looked up from his plate and smiled. Joe did look much better and he was relieved that his little spell was over. He still wasn't sure what had been behind it, but he wasn't going to push it. They ate their dinners in silence. Their father was out, and about.. at another society event.. leaving his two sons alone.

"Well, Joe you needed some rest anyway, you can call Mimi in the morning and tell her to bring your girl home,"

Jim said as she began to push his chair away from the table.


"Ya, I guess you're right," Joe said as he shrugged and began to stand up as well.

"Well, I see that you're back to your old self," Jim said as he opened a drawer to the desk that sat on the opposite side of the room.


Joe chuckled to himself; he did feel much better. Joe looked back to the television. Suddenly the screen went black and an image began to appear in the darkness. Joe stared on in horror as the face began to take form. It was Yamato, but this time there was no blood. He looked just as he did the last time Joe had seen him alive. The face on the screen began to laugh wickedly and Joe jumped at the sound.


"Jim!" Joe screamed.


He turned to see his brother looking at him oddly. He appeared to be oblivious to the object of Joe's terror. Puzzled and fed up with his brother's fooling around he turned back to his papers.


"Joe, for God sakes what's the matter now," he replied nonchalantly.


Joe however, had his attention drawn to something other than his brother's question at the moment. From the far side of the room, he could see a fire poker advancing toward his brother in a slow, but steady path. He jumped from the recliner and began to run to his brother who had again switched his concentration back to the papers. Joe watched as the poker moved closer to Jim's head.


"Jim!" Joe again shouted as he leapt in the air and tackled Jim to the floor.


Joe was able to catch a glimpse of the poker as it proceeded to fly through the air until it met the wall where it stopped.


"Joe, get the hell off of me. What is the matter with you," he heard a muffled voice cry from beneath his body.


Looking down he saw that his brother was struggling to get him off. When Jim was finally free from his brother, he stood and stared at him. Hhe was so furious that he was at a loss of words for a few seconds. Joe however, didn't seem to notice his brother's anger, as he once again looked up at the poker.


"Wow, it almost hit you," Joe said as his brother glared at him.


"WHAT almost hit me?" Jim shouted.


"The fire poker," Joe replied as he pointed to the wall.


Jim looked to the place that Joe had pointed at and saw nothing but the wallpaper.


"Joe, I don't see anything on the wall, much less, a fire poker," as he gritted his teeth.


Joe had been looking as he had started to point to the object when it suddenly began to vanish in the air. It had disappeared as suddenly as it had appeared.


"I swear, it was just there a second ago," Joe said as he looked at his brother and finally noticed how angry he was.


Jim tried to take a step forward towards his brother, he felt like strangling him, however, he found that his ankle was extremely sore and it hurt even worse when he tried to put any weight on it.


"OWW, Joe I could just kill you, damn I think I sprained my ankle," Jim said as he stopped dead in his tracks.


Joe stared at his now angry brother. He hadn't mean to hurt him, but he was just seeing strange things. Things that weren't there.. Reality was absent now. Was he going crazy?!


"Well, come and help me to the sofa," Jim hissed as he looked at his brother as if he were a lunatic.


"I…uh…are you sure you're not going to hurt me," Joe said hesitantly as he looked into his angry face.


"Joe," Jim said softly,

"I swear… I will hurt you if you don't get over here and help me right now!" He demanded as he let his temper get the best of him.


"Ok, ok,"

Joe said as he put his arm around his brother and began to walk him to the sofa,

"You don't have to get so mad, I did just save you're life you know."


Jim just pursed his lips and tried to remain calm. When Joe had finally set him on the couch and had his leg up and resting on a pillow he looked at him, shaking his head.


"My God Joe, you have gone completely mental!!"

He said in such a matter of fashion that Joe wasn't even sure if he should say anything. Joe wanted to tell his brother everything, but he didn't look too hot himself. He decided that he better let him cool off for a while and went to the kitchen to get himself something to drink.

***********

It was well into the afternoon before Mimi arrived at the Kido Apartment to drop off Meiko. It had been a hell of a night and she had surprisingly slept rather well since Jim called her. She didn't know what to think of the previous night. Had it been a dream? No, she didn't think so. It had been too real. Her imagination didn't have to go that far to think about possible culprits who would perform such an elaborate and cruel hoax. (Except Joe.. Now that they were enemies.. She wouldn;t be surprised if he pulled anything!)

The fact that Joe had his brother call and say that he was sick was suspicious enough. Joe was never sick. He was Pre-med after all, and made sure anything he did was neat, and hygenic. Something wasn't at all right. Maybe he was just tired after spending the night terrifying her. She could think forever about possible suspects and motives, but for the time being all she wanted to do was get more information! .


When Mimi walked into the house, she found Jim sitting on the couch playing with his laptop..
"Oh, Mimi, I'm so glad you have finally arrived to grace us with your presence," Jim replied when he saw Mimi walk into the room.


Meiko looked up to see her uncle and immediately ran to him. Mimi had never felt so good to see her smiling daughter smile up at her uncle. Even through the Mimi/Jyou conflict he had always remained a nuetral party, and treated her with kindness, and respect. She still considered him to be her family.


"Uncle Jim, Uncle Jim!" Meiko exclaimed.


Jim reluctantly released his hold on his neice.


"Hi Mei Mei, I heard that Mommy took real good care of you."


Meiko smiled. "Uh huh.. Mommy and I played camp-out! How's Daddy?!"


"Yes, Jim.. How is Joe?" Mimi asked, with a cocked eyebrow."Is he okay?"

"Yes, he has a terrible case of the flu, he's been sleeping all day. He told me that he wanted to talk to you before you leave though. I'll go wake him." Jim put Meiko down by her side.


"That's ok, I'll go wake him myself," Mimi said as she lead Meiko over to the couch.


"Mei Mei, can you make Mommy a great big castle while I run up and talk to Daddy for a minute?"


Meiko smiled and nodded as she immediately began to gather her blocks together. Mimi walked up the stairway as quietly as she could. She didn't want to wake Joe until she was able to get a good look around his room for possible evidence of any involvement in last night's shenanigans. She found the bedroom door opened slightly, so she crept inside without knocking.

She looked over at Joe as he lay on the bed in a sound sleep. He wasn't wearing anything on his exposed upper body and she watched as his chest continued to rise and fall in rhythm to his breathing. He looked so innocent and sweet when he was sleeping, but Mimi knew first hand what he was capable of.

Yet, for a moment she felt herself drawn to the man laid out before her, after all they had a history together and it wasn't all bad. Poor Mimi was so confused. She hated this man, yet she wanted him so much. Joe turned over in his sleep, snapping Mimi out of her thoughts.


Mimi began to search the room for any possible evidence, and when she was finally satisfied she went to Joe's side and gently shook him. Joe stirred and then slowly opened his eyes.


"Mimi?" Joe replied still half asleep.


Joe sat up in his bed and began to focus on his surroundings. Mimi was looking at him with an odd expression he had never seen before.


"What is it Mimi? Something wrong?" He asked.


Mimi glared at him.


"So how was your night?" She replied in the most sarcastic voice she could muster.


Joe stared at her. What was her problem? Then he remembered why he had wanted to see her. He was going to tell her about this morning. What the hell was he thinking, he couldn't tell her anything of the kind. She would just accuse him of being neurotic, or even worse, being afraid! He knew now that there was no way that she could ever know what had happened to him.


"I'm sick Mimi, can't you see that?"


Mimi looked at him and realized that he didn't look too well after all. Her tone began to soften a little.


"Well than what did you want to talk to me about," She asked in a friendlier voice.

Joe had to think fast, he had wanted to tell her all about last night and this morning but he knew now that he couldn't do that.


"Oh, I uh, I wanted to ask you if you could keep Mei Mei for the night. I really feel like shit," Joe said as he bit down on his lip regretting the question already.


But there was no turning back now. Mimi responding with a huge smile.


"Of course, I am her mother," She said cockily. "You don't have to curse either.." She said muttering.


Joe sighed and lay back on his pillow, now he did feel ill. What a stupid thing for him to say, now what was he going to do, he knew that he couldn't stay alone in his room tonight. He was hoping that he could have a pretend reason for sleeping oout of his room tonight to use as an excuse to sleep besides his daughter so that he wasn't alone. Mimi obviously noticed the change in his expression as well.


"Joe, you don't look too well, maybe I should keep Mei Mei for a couple days so that she don't catch this bug," Mimi said using the situation to her advantage.


Joe just looked back at her in defeat. Kido you wimp! You can't even tell your ex-best friend that you are afraid to sleep in your own room!! She's not just a friend though is she? You share a child.. You were once more.. SO much more. Now it will never be the same!

"Wait! Mimi.." Joe said softly.

Mimi turned, and looked at him. They both stared at each other, and knew both were withholding information. Mimi waited for a response, but heard none.

She wanted so much to tell Joe about what happened, but she still couldn't be sure whether he was somehow behind last night's events or not. Besides, she reasoned, If he heard her story he would never believe her anyway, not to mention let her take Meiko. No she had to play it cool for a while, until she was sure about what was really going on.


"I'm just tired is all," Joe replied.


"I'll tell you what, I'll call you in the morning and see how you're feeling. If you're better, I'll bring Meiko back, and if not, I'll wait until you are feeling better. Ok?"


Joe couldn't think of a good argument, so after a long pause he reluctantly shook his head yes. Mimi was indeed pleased with this turn of events and went to gather some clothes and other supplies in the event that Mei Mei's sleepover turned into an extended stay.


Joe lay on his bed becoming more terrified by the minute. He didn't have anyone. He had to laugh at that thought. He didn't know what to do. Maybe he could catch Mimi before she left and try to convince her that he was feeling much better and that maybe she and Mei Mei could stay in the apartment. He jumped from the bed and pulled on his bathrobe. He glanced over at the bathroom where his slippers lay, turning away he decided against returning to that room, so he ran out into the hall and down the stairway in nothing but his bathrobe and boxers.


Jim looked up to see Joe storming down the steps. He looked like a mad man. His blue-black hair flooded his eyes. Jim only noticed a tall frame with blue fuzz go by, in a blur.
"Have Mimi and Meiko left yet?" Joe asked as he flung open the door.


"Yes" Joe said as he tried to pull his brother in the door.


An old woman who happened to be walking down the sidewalk took one look at Joe and immediately twisted her face up and began lecturing him on how a young man like himself should not be running out in public exposing himself like that. She finished her lecture by commenting on what a pervert he was, flashing himself in front of his own brother too yet. Jim managed a small apology and swiftly pulled Joe back into the house.


"What is wrong with you, I think you need to see a doctor," he said as he led him to the couch.


Joe began to settle down and feeling ashamed and embarrassed at his behavior, he apologized and then said that he was just going to lay down a while on the couch if that was all right. Jim wasn't too convinced and insisted that he needed to have some medical attention. Joe would'bve retorted, "But's that's why you're here!!" but he felt exhausted.

Joe finally sweet talked him into letting him rest awhile and added that if he didn't feel better when he woke up he could call any doctor he wanted. Jim finally caved and he set him up on the sofa complete with pillows, blankets, an ice pack for his 'fever', and a large glass of ice water. He had never in his life seen his little brother like this, but he didn't know what else to do. He insisted that he was feeling better and he didn't feel that warm. Jim stood to let his brother rest.


"I swear Joe, if I didn't know any better, I would think that you are going mental. What's gotten into you man?" Jim said as he left the room.


Joe just waved and watched him leave, relieved that he was out of the bedroom and away from that bathroom.




Comments

The following comments are for "A Lesson From The Past: Chapter 1"
by Shanni_C





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