Title: Familiarity With the Strange
Author: Vesper (Regina)
Characters: Yukawa Manabu, Utsumi Kaoru, Kishitani Misa
Summary: In which Yukawa's new partner, Kishitani Misa, realizes just how strange Yukawa is, and Utsumi's at a loss in dealing with him -- again.
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Pursuant to this. This probably won't happen. At all. But it gave me a good reason for writing out a very unlikely image. Including Kishitani was the only way I could do it seriously, though. XD
Help, I've gone off the deep end. Please also note that all we know about Kishitani Misa's characterization, so far, is that she's a little bit sassy.
"So," Kishitani says, drawing it out, long and puzzled, "I know you said he was strange, but this is normal? Scribbling all over property with whatever he finds at hand?" Her voice takes on a subtle tone of scorn there at the end. Utsumi carefully doesn't react, and hopes the faint plume of embarrassment creeping hot and bothersome up her neck won't be noticed by her protege.
To cover, Utsumi clears her throat. "You get used to it."
Utsumi nods, firm and convinced. "Yes. I think he uses it to focus --" Kishitani still looks unconvinced and -- Utsumi falters, "Or, uh...." Is that pity on the younger woman's face? Really?
The sudden need to defend Yukawa's behavior makes Utsumi's voice louder than she intends, and she winces even as she states, "He's not crazy!" Her voice falls into a mutter, "He's just... a little weird." She shakes her head, closing her eyes, because that sounds just like an affirmation rather than a opposition. She opens her eyes to find Kishitani nodding, apparent acceptance on her face. Of course. She can see the evidence for herself.
The silliness of it catches up to Utsumi, because, after all, even if she's used to it by now, it is strange to see Yukawa-sensei's process with the eyes of one who's never seen it before. She says, "Has he done that thing where he covers his face like..." and she tries to demonstrate, but stops when she sees Kishitani's eyes go wide, her head moving in a tiny shake, and that could only mean one thing.
"After all this time, and you still don't know the exact formation of the mnemonic for motors," Yukawa says. Fortunately, he doesn't sound upset, but Utsumi still holds her breath as she turns around. Just --
"What?" Utsumi asks, confused.
"Fleming's left-hand rule for motors is a simple memory --"
Utsumi blurts, "I always thought it had something to do with your glasses." Off at the corner of her eye, Utsumi sees Kishitani cover her mouth with her hand, to better disguise a smile.
Yukawa pins Utsumi with a long disapproving stare, then says, "We should go --"
"No, wait. Now I want to know: why do you do it? If it's something to do with physics, okay, I get it, but why do you --"
"Because," Yukawa says, as he places a hand on Utsumi's shoulder, turning her to face the equations he's marked on the fence, "it's a reminder that revelation --" she freezes as he brings up his left hand up in front of her face, two bent-back fingers hovering in front of her lips, and now she knows that it's a double-u shape, will never forget it, definitely, and he is still talking, so pay attention, Kaoru -- "is a force like no other."
Yukawa walks off, and Utsumi stares at the fence, locked in place. She feels Kishitani come up beside her, and lean in, as if to impart a confidence. "You forgot to mention the disregard for personal space."
Utsumi feels her body move without her intention -- her torso moving forward, but her feet stuck -- until that's unsupportable and then her feet shuffle forward, too. It's like reaching for a surface that isn't there, and then feeling the momentary panic of a longer fall, but it unlocks her. Even so, when she answers Kishitani, it's with a mechanical intonation she has very little control over. "Yes. I did. Sorry."
Kishitani has her arms crossed, her face a mix of displeasure and amusement, when Utsumi turns to look at her. "I can tell this is going to be difficult. How did you put up with him?"
Utsumi opens her mouth and then reconsiders, picking her words with more care than she intended. "Honestly, it... wasn't an issue after a while."
Kishitani nods. "If you say so." She looks away, off to where Yukawa is striding away, not even looking behind him. "I think he wants us to follow him. If you're okay."
"I'm fine. Let's go." Utsumi starts off, and Kishitani falls in a little behind her, and Utsumi makes a face, disgusted with herself. Yeah, right, she's used to it. Right.
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