*	*	*	*	*

		Orange Marmalade - episode fifteen
		"Calm Before the Storm"


[Scene:  Disco Moebius]

[It seems that some time has passed since the end of the last episode.
The couples have sorted themselves out:  Anju-Kei, Miki-Ginta, and
Arimi-Yuu.  The club seems somewhat less crowded than it had been, but
it's difficult to say for sure.  It's certainly no quieter.]

Ginta:  Just what was that all about?

Miki:  (slightly hesitant) I'm not entirely sure myself.

Ginta:  Hmm...

Miki:  (quickly) I'm sure it's just a small misunderstanding.

Ginta:  If you say so.

[Meanwhile, Arimi draws Yuu close...]

Arimi:  I'm really glad we did this, Yuu-sempai.

Yuu:  I'm... glad to hear it.

Arimi:  The whole night's been wonderful...

Yuu:  {She thinks this is going well?}

[Arimi turns her head slightly away.]

Arimi:  It's funny... I was afraid...

[She turns back toward him.]

Arimi:  Never mind.  (smiles) Thank you for tonight... sempai.

[The song draws to a close, and the pair stop, standing still in the

Yuu:  Why, all of a sudden, after everything that happened...?

[Arimi's smile grows wider and more mischievous.]

Arimi:  You think too much, sempai...

[She pulls him forward toward her, rising onto her toes at the same
time, and their lips meet.]


[Scene:  Koishikawa-Matsuura Home, Outside]

[It's very late at night, and the neighborhood is dark and silent.
But there's still one light shining through a window of the families'
home.  As the camera approaches, Yuu can be seen; he is sitting at the
window, but with his back to it.  He appears to be focusing on a point
halfway between his feet, which are extended on the floor in front of
him, and the door to his room.]


[Scene:  Living Room]

[Early afternoon.  Anju and Meiko are sitting on the sofa, watching
television, as Yuu descends the stairs.]

Anju:  (looking over her shoulder) It's about time you got up,

Yuu:  (yawning) I had trouble getting to sleep.  (blinks) Where is

Meiko:  Shopping.

Yuu:  Oh.  What about Miki?

Anju:  (shrugs) Out.  She didn't say.

Meiko:  So... I've already listened to An's story, oniichan.  How was
        your night?

Yuu:  ...It gave me a lot to think about.

Meiko:  (rolls her eyes) That's just like you.

Anju:  You should have come with us, 'neechan.  You would have had a
       great time!

Meiko:  I'm not going to go out with Miwa-sempai, An.  Not ever.

Anju:  Hmpf.  You were wrong about Kei-san, and I bet you're wrong
       about Miwa-sempai too.

Meiko:  We don't know I was wrong!  I'm telling you, something about
        Tsuchiya Kei just doesn't feel right...

Anju:  You're too suspicious.

Meiko:  You're not suspicious enough!

Anju:  Face it, 'neechan, you're a lousy judge of character.

Meiko:  As if -you- have any room to criticize...

[The two glare at each other; the tension between them is almost
visible... until Yuu sits down, planting himself squarely between the
two.  While they're still surprised, he takes the opportunity to

Yuu:  If you're going to fight, could you find a better reason for it?

Anju:  But, 'niichan--

Yuu:  (leaning back) It would be a lot harder to move this time.

Meiko:  (sighing) Not just for our parents...

Anju:  (guilty) ...All right.

Meiko:  I'm sorry, An.

[Anju stiffens for a moment, then relaxes, also leaning back.]

Anju:  Never mind.  (wan smile) I promise not to say anything about
       Miwa-sempai, if you won't say anything about Kei-san.

Meiko:  (laughs) All right.  (pause) That reminds me... oniichan,
        Miwa-sempai called last night--

[Meiko pauses, glancing expectantly at Anju, but the younger twin says

Meiko:  So you're going to keep your promise?

Yuu:  (smiles) It's only been half a minute.  I bet she'll forget by

Anju:  'Niichan!

Yuu:  Anyway... Miwa-san?

Meiko:  (nodding) Not for me, though.  He wanted to talk to you about

Yuu:  (frowning thoughtfully) He didn't leave a message, or anything?

Meiko:  No, that was all.

Yuu:  Strange...  (slowly standing) I guess I should return his call,

Anju:  Wait a second.  'Niichan?

Yuu:  Hm?

Anju:  You still have Suzu-chan's pictures, right?  Can I borrow them
       for a while?

Yuu:  (blinks) Sure.  They're in the top drawer of my desk, I think.
      Just put them back where you found them, okay?

[Anju nods, and Yuu walks into the kitchen area, picking up the
telephone from the table as he walks past.]

Meiko:  What do you want with those, anyway?

Anju:  Arimi mentioned that she wanted to see them, and I think
       'niichan forgot about it.  You know how he is...

Meiko:  I don't know.  He was kind of reluctant to discuss that day...

Anju:  He's -always- reluctant to talk about -anything- that happens.

Meiko:  (doubtful) Well, that's true...

[Anju bounces to her feet and smiles.]

Anju:  So, there's no problem, then.  Right?  Want to come?

[Meiko considers the offer for a moment.]

Meiko:  I might as well.  It's bound to be more interesting than
        sitting here by myself.

Anju:  (as she ascends the stairs) But you do that all the time,

Meiko:  (to a now-empty room) There are times I wish you were a little
        more like oniichan, An...


[Scene:  Street]

[Meiko and Anju are walking along a fairly crowded street, near the
ABCB.  Anju is carrying a large envelope.  Meiko suddenly stops; three
paces later, Anju notices and turns around.]

Anju:  What's wrong, 'neechan?

Meiko:  Nothing.  I just remembered something I need to do.  Why don't
        you go ahead?  I can meet you at the ABCB when I'm done.

Anju:  I'll go with you...

Meiko:  You shouldn't keep Arimi-chan waiting.  Besides, I've already
        seen them; I wouldn't be missing anything.

Anju:  (puzzled) Well, if you say so...

Meiko:  (nodding) You go ahead.  I'll catch up.

[She waves and hurries off in the opposite direction.  Anju stares
after her for a moment, then shrugs, turns, and continues on her way.]


[Scene:  ABCB]

[The kissaten is reasonably busy today, but far from crowded; most of
the customers are sitting in the booths near the windows, leaving the
bar area, where Arimi is currently pouring three cups of coffee,
clear.  The door chimes as Anju walks in.]

Arimi:  Welcome to the ABCB!  (looks up and smiles) Oh, An!  I'll be
        right with you...

[Anju nods and walks to the counter, taking a seat, while Arimi
carries the three coffee cups to one of the booths.  Kijima pokes his
head out of the back room.]

Kijima:  Ah, An-chan.  Good to see you again.

Anju:  (waving) Hi, Master.  Looks like you're a little busy today...

Kijima:  (chuckling) Well, we manage... excuse me for a second.

[He ducks back into the room as Arimi returns to the bar.]

Anju:  What does he do back there, anyway?

Arimi:  (shrugging) Probably ordering.  Can I get you anything?

Anju:  I'll-- (pauses, changing her mind) Hmm.  I think I'd like some
       coffee, actually...

[Arimi doesn't comment, but begins to fill another cup.]

Anju:  (holding up the envelope; grins) I brought something I think
       you'll want to see.

Arimi:  Mmm?  (smiling) You seem excited.  What's inside?

Anju:  Remember those pictures of Miki-san and Suzu-chan?

Arimi:  Really?  (Anju nods.)  What are you waiting for, open them


[Scene:  Street]

[Meiko is walking swiftly along a crowded sidewalk, skillfully weaving
between people.  Suddenly, for no apparent reason, she stumbles,
falling sideways... but somebody catches her before she can fall.  She
looks up, and smiles.]

Namura:  Careful... Matsuura Meiko-chan, wasn't it?

Meiko:  (nodding shyly) Yes... thank you, sensei.

Namura:  (smiling) No trouble at all.

[The two begin walking again.]

Namura:  Quite a coincidence, running into you here...

Meiko:  We-- My family lives near here.  {Both my families, I

Namura:  (nodding) So do I.  I guess I'd expected all of the students
         to be away on vacation.  (chuckles self-consciously) Silly,
         isn't it?

Meiko:  Oh, no--  I mean, my family was away last week...

Namura:  You're enjoying your break, then?

[Meiko nods; Namura stops in front of a building, and she follows

Namura:  I'm glad to hear that.  (glances at the building, then back
         to Meiko) Well, maybe I'll see you again before school is
         back in session...

Meiko:  (looks up at the building) This is where you live?

Namura:  (nods) Take care, Meiko-chan.

[Meiko waves, watching as Namura enters the apartment building.  When
he is out of sight, she turns and slowly begins walking back toward
the ABCB.  She sighs.]

Meiko:  {Well, what did you expect...?}

[She slows for a moment, fishing out her Toryo medallion.  She slides
open the cover, revealing a slightly blurry photograph of Namura.
Looking at it, she smiles to herself.]

Meiko:  {But maybe, next time...}


[Scene:  Koishikawa-Matsuura Home, Kitchen]

[Yuu is half-sitting on, half-leaning against the counter near the
sink, speaking to the telephone.]

Yuu:  ...Wouldn't mind, but I really don't know much about it.  Maybe
      Miki could help.  (pause) Yes, she's good at it.  (pause) Well,
      she's out right now, but I'll ask her when I see her.  I'm
      pretty sure she does.  (pause) All right, then.  Was that all
      you wanted to ask me about, Miwa-san?  (pause) No, no reason...
      (pause) I just wondered.  All right-- (pause; laughs) I knew it,
      but she's not here.  Sorry.  (pause; nods) I'll tell her, but I
      wouldn't expect an answer.  (pause) I know.  Goodbye.

[Yuu stands, walking into the living room to return the phone to its


[Scene:  Street]

[Meiko is heading back toward the ABCB, walking more quickly than
usual, but stops as she turns a corner and finds herself face-to-face
with Tsuchiya Kei.]

Meiko:  You!

[Kei, who had begun to step around Meiko, draws to a halt, studying
her.  His expression is one of confusion.]

Kei:  Do I know you?

Meiko:  Matsuura Meiko.

Kei:  (snaps his fingers) Of course!  I knew you seemed familiar...
      Where's your sister?

Meiko:  Out.

Kei:  So are we.

[He laughs; her expression doesn't waver.]

Kei:  (smiling nervously) And here I thought you'd be more like your
      twin than like Koishikawa...

Meiko:  And what's that supposed to mean?

Kei:  (neutrally) That you're not as friendly as I'd imagined.  (grins
      suddenly) I guess that makes you the evil twin.

Meiko:  Do you remember Dashigaki, Tsuchiya-san?  I do.  (1)

Kei:  (raising one eyebrow) Are you sure you haven't mistaken me for
      someone else?

Meiko:  I know who you are... and I want you to stay away from my

Kei:  (shaking his head) I really don't see why you-- (pause, as a
      thought strikes him) Unless... you're jealous?

Meiko:  (blinks in utter shock) What?

Kei:  (melodramatically) Ah... Sibling rivalry is such a cruel and--

Meiko:  (growls) Cut that out!

Kei:  No?  Oh, well...  Give my regards to your sister.

[He begins to walk past Meiko, who is standing still, struck in

Meiko:  You...  Were you even listening to me?

Kei:  (without looking back) Naturally.  But it's really not your
      decision to make, is it?

[He turns the corner, leaving Meiko to stew.]

1 - Dashigaki was a junior high school in Izumo the Matsuuras attended.  
    At the time, Kei was also there.  See Chapter 13 for details.


[Scene:  ABCB]

[Not much time has passed.  Anju and Arimi are still at the counter,
looking over the pictures; it's hard to say which is more
enthusiastic.  At the moment, the top picture on the stack is one of
Miki and Suzu kneeling side by side in the surf.]

Anju:  I think this one was 'niichan's favorite.

Arimi:  (awed) I can see why.  They both look so beautiful...

Anju:  Un!  Just like I'd expect, from Suzu-chan... I guess Miki-san
       is a natural.  (laughs) I wouldn't know, but 'niichan says
       Yasuragi-san is really skilled, too.

Arimi:  (curious) He knows that much about it?  (2)

Anju:  (shrugging) Not about the photography, but he is a pretty good

Arimi:  Really?  He's never mentioned that to me.

Anju:  (nodding) He's quiet about it, but once when I was looking for
       him and he wasn't there, I came across a box in his room that
       was filled with sketches.  I remember there was a drawing of
       the Tokyo Tower in there, and there was one of Meiko-'neechan
       sitting beneath a tree at our old school...

Arimi:  Hmm...  (smiles) I wonder if he'd draw one of me?

Anju:  (grins back) You should ask him!  That might be kind of fun...

[The door chimes.]

Arimi:  (looking up from the pictures) Welcome... Meiko-chan.

Anju:  (over her shoulder) Hi, 'neechan!  I already started showing
       Arimi the pictures.  That's okay, right?

Meiko:  (approaching) Sure.  I've seen them, anyway.

Anju:  (blinking) Is something wrong?

Meiko:  What?  No.  Not really...  (sighs) I ran into Tsuchiya-san on
        my way here...

Anju:  Kei-san...?  Oneechan!  You didn't start fighting with him, did

Meiko:  Fighting?  Um, no...

[Meiko sighs heavily and takes a seat next to her sister at the

Meiko:  Not exactly, anyway.  He told me to say "hi" to you.

Anju:  (smiling) He remembered me?

Meiko:  It's been less than a day...

[Arimi sets a small ice cream sundae down in front of Meiko.  She
blinks, then gives Arimi a questioning glance.]

Arimi:  (smiling) My treat.  It sounds like you've had a rough day.

Meiko:  (laughs) Thank you, Arimi-chan...

Anju:  Aww... that's not fair.

Arimi:  (giggling) I'd give you one, An, but it wouldn't go very well
        with your coffee.

[Meiko joins in the laughter while Anju pouts.]

2 - In Japan, saying that someone did a good job or praising his
    professional skills implies that the speaker thinks he has enough
    expertise to be able to judge.  It's often impolite for a younger
    man to say such a thing, obviously; instead, he would say
    something along the lines of "I learned a lot from watching you."


[Scene:  Matsuura-Koishikawa Home, Living Room]

[Yuu is sitting on the sofa, examining a pamphlet.  He looks up as he
hears the door open.]

Yuu:  Well, you are still alive.  Welcome back.

[It is, naturally, Miki.  She slides her shoes off, stepping from the
genkan into the living room.  She doesn't look at Yuu.]

Miki:  ...I'm home.

Yuu:  I've wanted to talk to you.

Miki:  Oh?

Yuu:  (smiling wryly) I'd almost think you've been trying to avoid me.

Miki:  Why would I do something like that, Yuu-san?

[Yuu quirks an eyebrow at Miki.  She stands still for a moment longer,
then crosses to one of the chairs that frame the sofa.  She sits down
and looks at Yuu expectantly.]

Yuu:  (suddenly awkward) Er...

Miki:  Go ahead, talk.

[Yuu glances around the room.  The telephone catches his eye.]

Yuu:  {Oh, that's right...}  Um, Miwa-san called, before.  [Miki
      blinks.]  He wanted to ask you a favor.  (pause) Well, he wanted
      to ask me a favor, but I wasn't able to help, so...

Miki:  What did he want?

Yuu:  Apparently, his cousin needs some help with English.

Miki:  (frowning) Why not just hire a tutor, then?

Yuu:  (shrugging) He didn't say.

Miki:  I suppose I can at least ask him about it.  (shifts in the
       chair) If that's all you wanted...

Yuu:  No, wait!  I mean... that is, about Arimi-chan--

[He is interrupted as the door opens again.  The parents step in; Jin
and Youji are carrying three bags each, while Chiyako and Rumi are

Parents:  (in unison) We're home!

Yuu:  {Why now...?}

Yuu & Miki:  (more or less in unison) Welcome back.

Miki:  Groceries?

Chiyako:  (nodding) I thought I'd make something special tonight.

Jin:  Right, it's a special occasion.

Yuu:  In other words, you planned something two months ago and you're
      finally going to tell us about it.

Youji:  (hand behind head) Well, we do have an announcement to make...

Parents:  (in unison) We're going to America!


[Scene:  ABCB]

[The scene is much the same as earlier, though the three girls have
settled down and are quietly looking over the pictures, and Kijima has
emerged from the back room.  Arimi excuses herself for a moment and
goes to check on one of the groups.  Meiko turns toward Kijima.]

Meiko:  (quietly) Sorry, Master... we didn't mean to bother her.

Kijima:  (waving dismissively) Arimi-kun does her job.  Don't worry
         about it.

Meiko:  If you say so...

Kijima:  (grinning) It's a lot easier for her since your brother
         started working here.

[Meiko chuckles nervously, not quite knowing how to reply.  She is
rescued as the door chimes again.]

Kijima:  Welcome!

Ryouko:  (smiling) Hello, sempai... hello, Meiko-chan, Anju-chan.

Anju:  (waving) Hi, sensei.

Kijima:  (smiling) It's been a while.  What's the occasion?

Ryouko:  (laughs) I was just in the area.

[She slides onto one of the stools near the end of the counter as
Arimi returns.]

Ryouko:  So, how are you girls enjoying your break?

Meiko:  It's been... very eventful, so far.

Ryouko:  (glancing at the counter) So I see.  Vacation photos?
         (pause) Say... isn't that...?

Anju:  (nodding) Miki-san.  And that's Sakuma Suzu-chan with her.

Ryouko:  I thought so...  (smiles at Meiko) Eventful, indeed.

Meiko:  Well, we weren't there ourselves...

Anju:  But 'niichan helped with the photos.

Arimi:  An said it's one of his talents.

Meiko:  That's not exactly--

Kijima:  (laughing) Like I was saying before... it's definitely
         livelier since you girls came here.  (grins) Besides, Yuu-kun
         reminds me of myself, when I was younger...

Ryouko:  (smiling) Yuu-kun is more of a gentleman than you ever were.

Kijima:  (to the girls) I ask you, what have I ever done to deserve

Ryouko:  If they only knew...

Kijima:  (chuckles) Yeah, I guess.  But you don't have to say so!

Ryouko:  It's more fun that way.

Kijima:  Sheesh, I can't win...  (shakes his head and looks at Arimi)
         Hmm.  Looks like the couple in booth eight wants something...
         I'll take care of it.  (winking at Ryouko) I'll be back.

[Still smiling, Kijima heads over to the booth.]

Anju:  You and Master seem to have a really close relationship,

Ryouko:  (nods, smiling nostalgically) I dated him for a while, when
         we were your age.  (chuckles) I guess it didn't quite work
         out, but we stayed friends afterward.  He went overseas for a
         while, but when he came back, it was almost like nothing had

Arimi:  Hmm... lucky.  I hope my relationship with Yuu-sempai lasts as
        long as yours...

Ryouko:  (laughing) You know the strangest thing?  He really hasn't
         changed that much.  He runs a business now, but...  (shakes
         her head) Kijima-sempai is a very lucky man.

Meiko:  He does seem happy.

Ryouko:  (nodding)  He's found his true love.


[Scene:  Koishikawa-Matsuura Home, Living Room]

[Camera perspective is looking straight down from above the sofa,
where Miki is currently lying.  Her eyes suddenly snap open.  She
looks around at the empty room and laughs quietly to herself, sitting

Miki:  What...?  (relieved) Just a dream, huh?

[Yuu walks into the room from the kitchen, carrying a glass of water.]

Yuu:  Oh, you're awake?

[Miki nods.  Yuu sits down next to her on the sofa and hands her the

Yuu:  I didn't think you were the type to faint.

Miki:  Oh, no.  You mean...

Yuu:  (nodding) It really happened.  You were only out for a minute.

Miki:  (hiding her face in her hands) Oh, great.

Yuu:  (facing toward the kitchen) She's awake!

[One by one, the four parents emerge into the living room.]

Rumi:  That was fast.

Youji:  We hadn't even finished unpacking yet.

Jin:  (stage whisper to Miki) He doesn't want to let you know how
      worried he was.

Miki:  (laughing despite herself) All right.  Thanks, everyone.
       (pause) But... why America?

Rumi:  Well, we'd meant to tell you earlier, but...

Jin:  ...I was invited to perform in concert there.

Chiyako:  (taking Jin's arm) Naturally, I'll be going along.

Youji:  So we thought the rest of us could tag along, too.

Rumi:  It'll be fun!

Jin:  I'm playing in New York in three days.

Youji:  (clapping his hands) So what do you say?

Yuu:  No, thanks.

Youji:  Good!  I'll make the res--  (blinks) No?

Yuu:  (shrugging) I didn't know, so I made other plans.  Besides, I
      don't think I could take another whole week off, especially on
      such short notice.

Rumi:  Well, that's understandable...

Jin:  I'll bring you a souvenir, Yuu-kun.

Yuu:  (chuckling) Thanks.

Miki:  Um, I...

[She pauses, recoiling slightly as she notices that the collective
attention of the parents is now focused on her.]

Miki:  I... sort of made other plans, too.

Chiyako:  Oh.  (long pause) Well, I suppose...

Miki:  (shrugging) It's not the first time, and Yuu-kun will be here.
       Go ahead and enjoy yourselves.

Youji:  Miki-chan is right; no use being disappointed.

Rumi:  Right!  Just wait until next time!  Ne, Yuu-kun, Miki?

Yuu:  Well, you never know.

[Miki just smiles.]

Chiyako:  (nodding)  All right, then.  Do you feel okay, Miki-chan?

Miki:  I'm fine.  I guess it was just a shock.

Jin:  Well, you returned the favor...

Miki:  (smiling wanly) Sorry about that.

Rumi:  As long as you're all right.

Youji:  We'd better finish unpacking the groceries.

Chiyako:  (nodding) I should start the chicken...

[The four withdraw to the kitchen.  With a bemused expression, Miki
looks down at the glass of water in her hand, which is still almost
full.  She sets it aside on the table, and her eyes fall on the

Miki:  What's this?  (reading) Osaka?

Yuu:  Remember those other plans I mentioned?

Miki:  So you're taking one of your trips?  That's an odd coincidence.

Yuu:  You knew about them?

Miki:  Your sisters mentioned it once or twice.  (teasing) I thought
       you couldn't take the time off from work.

Yuu:  This is different; one day, at most...

[The two exchange a glance, and laugh.]

Miki:  You know he would have given you the week off, if you'd asked.

Yuu:  (nodding) I know.  I wouldn't feel right, though.

Miki:  You do have your good points.  What do you want in Osaka,

Yuu:  Oh... just sightseeing.

[Miki looks askance at Yuu, who smiles faintly.]

Miki:  I wonder whether your sisters will stay here or go with our

Yuu:  (thoughtfully) Normally, they'd go, but I think this time Meiko
      will stay.

Miki:  (shrugging) I guess we'll know soon enough.  It'd be nice not
       to be alone, for once.

Yuu:  (chuckling) If they don't stay, you could always go with me.

Miki:  Hmm.  (smiles) I'll keep that in mind.  Thanks, Yuu-kun.

[She stands and stretches.  With a jaunty wave, she carries the glass
of water off toward the kitchen, leaving behind a perplexed Yuu.]


		Yuu's Journal

	I wish mind-reading was among my abilities.  Maybe then I'd
understand the way women think.
	I wonder if this means I'm forgiven?