Things that I’m supposed to do:
I drink a cup of tea
“Let’s go home.”
It’s the end of a long day—longer. They’re all weary from battling the Guild, and there’s plenty of mop-up work for the Black Lizard dealing with those who would capitalize on anything left behind. The Port Mafia still rules the local underground and has no interest in letting others get a foothold in their territory.
But at home, they shed that. Ryuunosuke eases into their home with a sigh—perhaps relief, perhaps comfort. Gin makes tea and curls up in a chair, freed of the hard silence that guards her during work.
“Drink,” she suggests.
Her brother drinks.
Cor hesitated, enough to make Zana stop pouring tea to narrow her eyes at him.
He squirmed despite being a teenager. “You don’t—” He huffed, then forced the words out. “You don’t have to stay here for me. Anymore.”
She stopped breathing, topped off his cup, sat. A slow inhale of steam. “I’m head of this entire training program,” she said quietly, sipped. “I’m not suffering on your account.”
She’d promised not to leave him.
“Little brother.” Zana waited for him to look up. “I’m fine.”
Cor finally nodded. His shoulders relaxed as he reached for tea.