Family Gathering, and Somehow Included
I wiped my face with a steaming hot washcloth Minoa-san brought me, as Alica-san carefully trimmed my hair so that I was ready to be presented to my parents. My hair had grown considerably longer than how I had kept it in the other world, as a guy, but hearing that my hair now was called “cute”, I couldn’t help but smile.
“Seiren-sama, is there anything else I can help you with?”
“Oh, no, I’m good.”
After being called cute like that, having been caught fidgeting strangely, I made sure to let Alica-san know not to worry. After all, it should be excusable considering her extra effort for such a significant degree of special cosmetic preparation, of course, right? ((Extra BS was added to this BS excuse, to make sure the magnitude of BS for this excuse was not lost in translation…)) Considering it though, I did really easily become very happy simply by being called cute, it shows how well I’ve been able to adapt. ((..because BS excuse didn’t even convince her.)) I guess even though I grew up as a guy, I did get used to being seen as girly sometimes at school. I did always have that very feminine face, even as a guy, and the fact I had an interest in plants and sowing only furthered such feminine impressions.
“How big is the dining hall?”
“It is on the first floor. Other than us, most likely only be Saryuu-sama there when we arrive.”
“Oh, my brother is there too? That should be fine.”
“Breakfast should currently be served, so we should get going.”
“Oh! Hopefully things will work fine with my brother, I don’t want to make things awkward for everyone here. I’ll be careful.”
The two of us talk as we start heading down the stairs. Since my dress is rather long, I pinch a segment of it and carry it as I walk, so that I won’t trip on it. Actually, thinking about it, its strange that I so instinctively held the dress like this, though I was also scary not being able to see my feet while walking down the stairs, with the dress clinging so annoyingly to my legs. My shoes… those got sorta awkward too, I don’t know how girls could regularly walk around in such high heels. It was scary going down the stairs in these shoes, I firmly gripped the handrail on the way down in fear of falling down the stairs. At least my hands felt firm with such a good sturdy handrail, made of shiny thick black wood. Was the house even that old, or was it just that the Shiya Family has a lot of history? I wonder..
Eventually, I arrived at the entrance of the dining hall. Marking its entrance were a set of giant double doors, waiting to be opened. The dining hall was large, assuredly, but even the doors at its entrance were impressively large. You could probably fit two or three floors of my previous school into this dining hall. I made my way to the doors, to enter such a massive dinning hall. Before the doors, I was greeted by Yuzuruha-san. Really, this was absolutely amazing. It made me doubt my decision to miss out on this last night, to just eat dinner in my room. Well, true, I did need time before facing my parents, there was that to consider.. which I will have to face this morning. No more excuses.
“Seiran-sama, good morning.”
“Oh! Yuzuruha-san, good morning.”
“Please come inside, everyone has been waiting for you.”
True, I should try my best, considering Yuzuruha-san is greeting me so gladly. As Yuzuruha-san opened the great doors, I could smell delicious food coming from the other side. It was even just a breakfast, it was incredible the quality of food. Once inside, Alica-san was there to guide me to the middle of the room, where there was a surprising small table, considering the size of the room at least. While still being bigger than I was used to, having such a gigantic room contain such a smaller table was funny in its own way. Still, it was sufficiently decorated, with massive shelves adorning the walls, seemingly encasing the table within. As my gaze eventually returned to the table once again, it settled on my father sitting in the chair closest to the entrance, who I had only met briefly yesterday. Beside him was my mother, sitting in the next seat over from the entrance. Then, in the next seat over from my mother was a young boy, the same one I had seen earlier. Actually, I have yet to be formally introduced to Saryuu so far. In consideration of such, I started with greeting my parents. I bowed my head to them, carefully considering the right words to say.
“Good morning… Dad, Mom.”
As I finally try to speak, I surprisingly pull it off nicely. Actually, considering it carefully, it might have been more appropriate to have used more formal names for my parents, but I was slow to think of that. ((She actually starts using -sama at the end of the names, but I’ll be handling it slightly differently in english)).
“Oh, good morning Seiren. Did you sleep well last night?”
After my first blunder, my second response was much more nervous. But looking closely at father, I can see that even his face also has that familiar effeminate fragment. During my moment of hesitation, Minoa-san came up behind me, with a “I’m glad you are getting along with the master” secretly whispered to me. Well, truthfully, I was happy not only to see my father, but also my mother. This was very clear to me, standing before their chairs. I could honestly feel myself radiating happiness, even if this was still kinda hard.
“Good morning, Seiren. The outfit I chose for you seems to match your hair wonderfully.”
“Oh, really? Thank you.”
It seems mother was the one who picked my outfit. Well, it certainly wouldn’t have been father, but I generally suspected it might have been one of the maids who picked such. I guess not… Mother probably has been dreaming of when she could put her daughter in a dress like this. Certainly, being a guy, she wouldn’t have been able to do the same with Saryuu. Considering such, I became worried for my future. After all, it seems clear I should expect more frills and elegance in the future. I would need to stay strong. Somehow pulling out my best smile again, mother returned the same in kind. Clasping together my hands in conclusive fulfilment, I finally turn to my brother. Saryuu-kun… it was time to face this delicate issue, finally. Really, I wasn’t sure how much he would listen to what I have to say, considering I just suddenly sprung up in his life as his sister and all.
“Oh, I should make sure to introduce you two properly. Seiren. Saryuu.”
“Thank you, mother.”
My brother stood up when his name was called, standing slightly taller than me and ever so attentive. Looking closely, he still had a smidgen of childishness left to his face, but he still managed to look smart. Oh, he was probably also smart intellectually as well. He look very established, like the proper heir of a rich family would be expected to look. He wore a shirt that properly matched his pants, the same set he was wearing earlier. He wore a loop tie, which tied together at the top firmly like a round broach. He looked rather fit, especially for being only 14 years old as I was told earlier, while still having some refinement to his physique. All things considered, he will probably grow up with an amazing physique. Under mother’s compulsion, Saryuu approaches me much closer. Alica-san had stepped away from me to make sure I wasn’t crowded, leaving me face to face with my brother suddenly for the first time.
“Saryuu here is your brother. Saryuu, Seiren here is your sister. You two should properly say hello to each other.”
“Uh.. greetings, Seiren-sama. My name is Saryuu, it is my honour to finally meet you.”
“Oh yes, it is wonderful to finally meet you. I’m Seiren…. I look forward seeing you more in the future.”
I was as shy as a cat, as I just tried to speak naturally. I tried hard to remember the words, so that I wouldn’t make any mistakes. Saryuu himself was surprised with my careful phrasing, his wide eyes betraying his surprise.
“Si…sister?” ((For those familiar, this was specifically “Ne..ne-sama?”))
“Did I mess up? I’m still not used to speaking like this.”
I answered his queried look with a wry smile. Saryuu then switched back to a frown, restoring that serious expression of his.
“You don’t exactly have the disposition befitting of one from the Shiya family.”
“I’m sorry for such. I only learned that I was a daughter of the Shiya family yesterday.”
With such, my brother’s face vented his frustration, as he furrowed his eyebrows and had his hands defiantly to his sides. Even if he refuses to believe I’m a daughter of the family, it won’t change anything. Well, this is probably his own way of adjusting to growing up in this family as the younger one. The biggest reason I am unaware of how to handle myself properly here is because I grew up as a guy.
“Well, I’m just me so we shouldn’t worry about it.”
“Well, Seirun, that’s not exactly how things work around here.”
“I’ve not had much chance to adjust. Mother is aware of some of my circumstances.”
I suspected my brother didn’t know how my life was before here at least, and shrugged that concern off mother’s way. My parents should know by now that I used to be a guy. I knew I had to be cautious, this wasn’t the sort of thing that people would consider easily. Mother seemed to catch on to such concerns, as she hastened to change the topic. Father just looked at me quietly, letting the silence freeze over. Hopefully you are okay, father.
“Okay, that will be enough. Come on, let’s have some breakfast. For the first time ever, the entire family will be eating together.”
As inspired by mother, I sit in the seat opposite her. Saryuu is still glaring at me in frustration, but also returns to his seat. Once my brother was finally seated, the Shiya Family breakfast begun.