New Home

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Chapter 12

Nimani, Yuri, and Natsuki sat on the couch, taking a nap together.

There came a loud, rapid knocking on the door that alerted the two older women to stir awake.

"Yuri, baby, can you get that?" Natsuki mumbled, pulling Nimani onto herself.

Yuri groaned as she stood, walking to the door.

Naruko stood there with a wide grin on his face.

"Naruko! What a-" Yuri yawned, "Pleasure to see you!"

"I'm sorry, were you asleep?" the man worried.

"What brings you here, Nark?" Natsuki asked in a grumble as Nimani woke up.

"Uncle Naruko..?" Nimani wondered sleepily.

"Hey, sweetie. Remember that promise I made? To come back when I found you a home?" Naruko grinned.

The color seemed to drain from Natsuki and Yuri's faces.

"A home..? But... I like it here...." Nimani pouted.

"Well Nimani the Chandler-Sawyers are a nice couple. And they have a bunch of friends who said they'd come by while they're at work and play with you. Doesn't that sound fun?" Naruko said sweetly, ruffling her hair.

Nimani jerked from the contact, burying her face into Natsuki's chest as she hugged her tightly.

"No! I wanna stay! I.... I love them! Don't take me away!" Nimani screamed.

Yuri stood frozen by the door, crying silently.

"Yuri! Natsuki! Please! Tell him I've been good! Don't let him take me!" Nimani sobbed.

Natsuki stroked up and down her back, cooing into her ear.

"M... May we... H-Have a moment to say goodbye..?" Yuri asked in a whisper.

"Yes! Oh my gosh! I'm so sorry!" Naruko stood abruptly as he walked into the kitchen to give them some privacy.

"Nimani... Baby girl..." Natsuki whispered.

The girl lifted her face, her green eyes reddened and glistening with tears.

"Hey now... Don't cry..." Natsuki gave her a sad smile, wiping her tears with her sweater sleeve.

"I don't wanna go... I wanna stay with you..." Nimani sniffed.

"I know, baby... But you have to..." Natsuki said.

"But why..?" Nimani asked.

Yuri hurriedly threw some small clothes into a duffel bag, including a picture of the couple and some of Natsuki's old mittens.

"Because, Nimani... We aren't your parents... We can't keep you... We want to... So, so much... But you just aren't ours..." Natsuki explained in a whisper, rocking the child back and forth in her embrace.

"But why..? Why can't I be yours..?" Nimani asked hoarsely.

"I... I don't know, sweetheart...." Natsuki hugged her tightly, a tear escaping her eye, "I just don't know..."

Yuri walked back downstairs with the small bag in her hands and stood at the foot of the stairs.

"Mama!" Nimani ran into Yuri's arms, sobbing wildly.

Yuri felt like her heart was being torn in two as she collapsed to her knees and hugged the girl tightly, crying just as hard.

"Mama Yuri.... Please.... Let me stay..." Nimani whimpered.

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