(continued story) "Give the flowers back." Ayame instructed firmly. "Maybe I can convince him not to report it to the village police. They're all so kind to me." She led Haruki back to the florist's stand where she explained everything and pleaded with the man to have mercy on Haruki. Everyone in the village liked Ayame because she was the daughter of two famous ninjas who dedicated their lives to the Rain Village. They'd died in a flood 9 years ago, but Ayame had plenty of people that lent their support to her, she was never really alone. Ayame touched his shoulder and directed his attention to the sign he perceived earlier. "So, you didn't see that?" she questioned again. "I saw it, but I didn't know it said the flowers cost something." "So, you couldn't read it?" Ayame pursued. "Girl, I don't know a single da** letter. You think my whore of a mother taught me? She didn't know the names of the men she slept with!" Ayame shuddered deeply. The florist twitched, disgusted. "L--Let's get going, Haruki." Ayame pressed, pushing him on. Haruki remained silent as did Ayame. Haruki narrowed his eyes as he stared at her. "Don't pretend you don't hate me, just say it." he stated icily, abruptly. Ayame turned, surprised. "I saw your face back there; you think I'm dirt, that I can't stop breaking the law wherever I go. You think like the rest of them, right?" he scoffed. "Course I'm doomed to that kind of sh** aren't I, being the runt of some whore and a drunk!" His brown eyes blazed with rage, fists clenched at his sides. Ayame's baby blue eyes were soft and she leaned towards him, and to his shock, planted a gentle kiss on his lips. Redness rushed into Haruki's cheeks. Ayame pulled back, smiling. "Just because you had bad parents doesn't mean you're going to be the same. You chose your own path, we all do, Haruki." she proclaimed earnestly. The claim caused Haruki to become quiet and thoughtful. "And by the way, thank you for the flowers." Ayame continued, hugging him. "That was so sweet of you."
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