They walked in and were seated in a booth far enough away
from the entrance to the larger building that they could still talk. “So why
did you join?” Kristy asked.
“A way to get away.” He said. “Small town life didn’t
exactly suit me when I was eighteen.”
“That is why my dad also. He didn’t want to be a farmer and
he wanted to learn a trade.” She said as she looked at the menu.
“How many places did you guys live?” he asked.
“Five that I can remember. If you ask my oldest brother it
was something like fifteen. After we came here from brazil we stayed
stateside.” She said and he smiled. “You?”
“A few duty stations nothing to write home about. this place
has become my home though. It is funny that I now have the option of staying here and working and
possibly train others or I can get out.” He said softly.
“Because of?” she asked.
“I am a single father. It is a weird thing in the military
and they don’t exactly like it.” He said laughing slightly.
“You don’t see many single fathers who are as hands on as
you either.” Kristy said, “It is nice.”
“She is all I have.” He said as he looked down at the girl
who was coloring.
“I doubt that.” Kristy said and went back to the menu. They
ordered and then talked throughout the meal. Asking questions of each other and
also including Sakura into their conversations. When the meal was over he
looked at Kristy and asked, “Are you ready to play?”
“I am always ready to play.” She said with a smile as she
took Sakuras hand and started to walk to the main building. He followed watching
his daughter and her and he felt something he hadn’t in a long time. He was
content. He didn’t feel lonely. He went over and started to but three cards for
the gaming tokens. He gave Kristy hers and looked at Sakura and shook his head.
“You will leave it somewhere. i will hold on to it.
“You’re no fun daddy.” Sakura said as she started to pout.
“Come on Sakura. Let’s go see what games they have here.”
Kristy said as she seemed excited to play. Her infectious smile was to much for
the little girl and they started off without him. he followed in their wake
though as Kristy was telling Sakura what she had to do with each game. Sakura
saw a game she wanted to do and soon found that she was good at hitting the
button just right and with three games she won five times. The machine was
still uploading her tickets to her card when she started to walk away.
Mitsuhide laughed at his daughter and still followed. Soon Kristy was throwing
balls at clowns heads and he walked up behind her.
“You’re throwing to high.” He said in her ear.
“Okay it is clowns though so it really doesn’t matter.” She
said. “And where is your daughter?”
“She is playing the alien game next to you.” He said.
“Are you just going to stand there are are you going to help
me kill the clowns?” she turned her head slightly to look at him and he moved
to grab a ball and without looking at the clowns he tossed it and they all
fell. “How did you do that?”
“I had to kill the clowns to save you.” He said with a
smile. She leaned into him as they both looked over to Sakura who was winning
at the racing game.
“She plays like you do.” Kristy said.
“She plays like my brother.” He said softly. “Every face she
makes is his.”
“Mitsuhide.” Kristy said softly. “That has to be hard.”
“it is. She makes it worth it. I still ask the same question
I did that night she was left with me, why Toki picked me.” He said.
“That is easy.” Kristy said.
“What?” Mitsuhide said.
“He must have knew you would do anything for her.” Kristy
“He didn’t even know her though.” Mitsuhide said.
“But she had you.” Kristy said. He moved a few inches closer
to her. He wrapped his arm around her in the front and he leaned his forehead
on her shoulder.
“Thank you.” He said softly. She patted his arm and just let
her hand stay there onto of his arm.
“Why is daddy hugging you?” Sakura asked as she won her game
and looked up. “Are you leaving?”
“No Sweetheart.” Kristy said. “Daddy is just having a
“Oh.” Sakura said and she went off to the next game.
“I’m having a moment?” he asked as he chuckled.
“It is something Ruth says when she needs a minute to think
of something or to do something.” Kristy said. “She tells the kids that and
they get it.”
“Oh.” He said. “I guess I was having a moment.”
“It happens to the best of us.” Kristy said and she walked
to the small girl. “You know you are really good at these games.”
“Daddy showed me the tricks.” Sakura said.
“Tricks?” Kristy said.
“How to win.” Sakura said.
“Oh those tricks.” Kristy said. Mitsuhide was looking at
some basketball game a few more down.
“Miss Kristy do you like my daddy?” Sakura asked.
“Yes.” Kristy said. “Your daddy is a nice man.”
“But do you like like my daddy?” Sakura asked.
“And where did you hear the term like like?” Kristy asked.
“Amber.” Sakura said.
“Ah, and Amber’s mother is getting married next month. Is
that why you asked me if I was married?” Kristy asked.
“Maybe.” Sakura said as she looked at the woman standing
next to her. “Amber says I am a weirdo because I don’t have a mommy like
everyone else. Will you be my mommy miss Kristy?”
Kristy’s eyes went wide for a second and it was the first
time Mitsuhide had seen her look confused. He looked at his daughter and he
wondered what the hell the kid had said and how bad it really was. “Is everything
here okay?” he asked as he walked up and looked at Kristy and then his
“It’s fine.” Kristy said he knew whatever Sakura had said
had somehow done something to the woman in front of him. She smiled again as
she looked at Sakura. “We will talk about your question later okay?”
“Okay.” Sakura said and went back to her game.
“What question?” Mitsuhide asked softly in her ear.
“it’s nothing.” Kristy said.
“Oh it is something.” He said.” I could see it from across
the room hun. Now tell me what my daughter asked you.”
“She asked if I would be her mommy.” Kristy said.
“She did what?” Mitsuhide croaked out.
“Mitsuhide it isn’t anything to get worked up over.” She
said softly. “A girl in her class whose mother is getting remarried has been
talking about getting a new dad. Sakura is putting two and two together and she
sees something she knows she wants. A mom. She doesn’t understand things like
“She just asked you if you would be her mom.” Mitsuhide said
as he shook his head. “I can’t believe it.”
“Sakura is the type of child who asks questions, which is a
good thing, Mitsuhide.” Kristy said.
“Well that isn’t like a normal first date question.” He said
as he looked down at the ground and knew this would probably be his first and
last date with the woman by his side.
“No but Sakura isn’t a normal child.” She said laughing. “I
am kind of honored that she asked me it. It just took me by surprise.”
“Honored?” Mitsuhide looked up and into her eyes.
“Of course. Why wouldn’t I be. It isn’t everyday a child
asks you to be their parent. It means she likes me and trusts me enough to ask
something like that.” Kristy said. “It was just sudden. Do not make a big deal
out of it. It isn’t like she goes around asking every woman to be her mother.
We will all talk about it another time and tell her we can’t ask people to be
“You are to good to be true.” Mitsuhide said as he looked at
“Why do you say that?” Kristy asked.
“Any other person would be running away. You not only are
still there you are telling me not to be mad at her which I wasn’t going to
be.” He said. He brushed a lock of hair off her cheek and tucked it gently
behind her ear. “I think we are the ones who are extremely lucky to have the
chance to know you.”
“Mitsuhide.” She said softly as the pink in her cheeks
returned and he couldn’t wait any longer. He bent down and gently touched his
lips to hers. She responded to the kiss by softly kissing him back. When he
lifted his head he looked at her but then he looked around to see where his
troublesome daughter was.
“Sakura?” he called out and the little girl was standing on
the other side of the game thinking she was going to be in trouble. She shook
her head in response. “Little devil come here.”
“No Daddy.” She said.
“I said come here.” He said.
“Daddy I don’t want to go home!” she said.
“Sakura no one said anything about going home.” He said and
she poked her head around the side of the game.
“We have to take a picture.” Kristy said.
“What?” Mitsuhide asked and Sakura looked at the woman.
“Come on.” Kristy said as she pulled him along and grabbed
on to the little girls hand. The picture booth was in front of them. They did
the poses for the three of them and as Sakura played a game right next to the
photo booth the two of them did a set. On the last one Kristy turned to
Mitsuhide and smiled as she reached up and he bent down and kissed her as the
picture was taken.
As they waited for
the pictures he looked at her as she kept looking for Sakura through the crowd.
He had to smile at her. Sakura wasn’t wrong she would make a good mother for
any child. When the photos dropped she put one set in her purse and he took the
other. “Our first kiss.” She said.
“Second.” He replied without thinking.
“Close enough.” She said as she looked to where the little
girl was ahead of them. “It is getting packed in here.”
“It is.” He replied as he looked around and saw people of
all ages everywhere. “How about we go to the park for the last part of the
daylight. Sakura loves to feed the ducks.”
“Well I hate to inform you of this but I also love to feed
the ducks.” Kristy said.
“is there anything you don’t like?” Mistuhide said with a
“Clowns.” Kristy said. “I hate clowns with a passion.”
“Noted. So watching It later is a no go?” he asked
“That is a negative.” She said.
“How about killer clowns from outer space?” he asked.
“Still Negative.” She said.
“You’re no fun.” He said with a deep chuckle.
“I will have nightmare for weeks if I see one.” She said.
“Well I have to protect you from those nightmares.” He said
“What daddy?” she said as she moved forward.
“We are going to go see the ducks.” He said and she got a
“Yay! Ducks.” She said as she hopped up into his arms.
He put her in the car seat again after he opened the
passenger side door for Kristy. When he got into the drivers seat she was
talking up a storm about the different ducks and what she had named them all.
Kristy was listening and laughing with the little girl and Mitsuhide just sat
back and listened to it all. He had no idea this was what he had been missing
out of life.
When they got to the park which he judged they had an hour
left of daylight left to find and feed the ducks. He hadn’t really been paying attention
to the things around him when he realized the car had gone silent. He looked at
Kristy who was sitting there looking back at the tiny girl herself. He looked
in the rear view mirror and saw Sakura was passed out. There was no hope of
waking her either. He had to shake his head.