Chase had just been done with his weekly forest visit, as it was a prime place to get fresh herbs without burning out his wallet, before he heard a voice speaking to him. Looking over, he realized it was from Toby; someone he saw around now and then. From what Chase saw, he was a kind man.
"Good morning, Toby." He greeted, walking up the bridge, "Yes, it really is a nice day. It’s been warming up, thank goodness." Chase really was just sick of the cold by now. Noticing the fishing pole, he looked down and scanned the river, curious. "Anything biting today?"
After days of travel, Leon had finally come across a quaint little town. Unlike Selphia, which is a much more rural area, this town gave off a more progressive style— something that the fox wasn’t really familiar with. He mindlessly wandered down the path until a rather tantalizing aroma filled his nose. He hummed and followed the scent to a bar, which he slowly entered on a whim— he just had to find out what that smell was.
A bell rung upon his entrance, which made his ears twitch as he looked around the establishment.
"…Interesting." His curios gaze shifted from table to ceiling.
It wasn’t unusual for Chase not to check the door for every customer that came in, as he was known for getting much too into his culinary work to notice the outside world. But as more dishes were served and the heat of the oven left his system, he gave himself a chance to look at the bar’s activity. When rather odd fashion choices and…were those real ears?- blocked his view, he found himself more confused than he planned to be today.
"…Can, uh, can I help you, sir?" he stammered, wiping his hands clean with his apron as he walked from behind the bar counter.
The salty, metallic taste of blood sliding off her lip alerted her to too much pressure from her teeth, and she resigned to simply prodding the split with her tongue. She tiptoed to the small table and sat as he commanded. Splotches reminiscent of stains dotted the floor and assorted fabrics around the room… He probably had children, or maybe a dog. Dogs are all sorts of trouble… Like children. His hands moved too quickly for her to earn a glance at a possible wedding band.
Perhaps he was right; she could’ve marched into any other house. But that other one looked too sparkly from her view through the windows, and unpleasantly raised voices echoed out of that farmhouse a bit down the path. Besides, she was hungry. And walking all the way back to Harmonica was out of question. An honest answer seemed in order, this time. “I was hungry, and this was the closest house I felt like going to,” she replied, hands folded in her lap, eyes wandering.
Chase’s face furrowed, confused, but willing to accept her words for now. He supposed it didn’t matter how she got here, as long as she left by the day’s end. “…Alright.” He mumbled, going about his work.
When the thought of how quiet it was passed his mind, he found himself scared by it. He had given up ‘quiet’ years ago, though involuntarily. And while there were other reasons for that, there were a specific two that he could think of right off the bat. And they were usually loud. Knowing they were in the house, he stopped, trying to hear for them. “…Kids?” ”Daddy!”
As if on cue, the twins ran their little legs to their father, reacting to his call. They usually did, but Chase was still happy that they followed his directions anyway. “Just wanted to check up on you all, thank you. Were you playing?” Chase listened to his daughter ramble on as he finished up the meal, sliding the plate in front of the girl. “This was what you wanted, yes?” he asked, making sure that she was satisfied with it.
"Awh.❤" Muffy responded to his suggestion, rosy colours infiltrating her pale cheeks. One hand remained linked with Mary-Kate, yet she twisted around the two children to peck him sincerely out of slight humour. "Is someone a little nervous to go out on the ice?♪" She asked, giggling amorously at the way he hesitated beforehand. "No need to worry, I will show you three how it is done."
Waddling like a penguin, the overly confident blonde staggered onto the ice and walked a couple of steps. Primary to successful ice skating, one has to find their center gravity. From then on, with one sassy kick after another, her body projected agile across the frozen river. When she resided in the city, the ice skating rink close by was a popular hangout for teenagers, such as herself.
Gracefully, she skated back towards her family and slammed on the sides of the metal to halt herself. “Alright, let us start with daddy, shall we kids?❤” Scooting over in front of the strawberry blonde, she held out both of her hands shielded in ruby mittens. Muffy playfully slipped in a wink in between her movement.
Chase pouted, rolling his eyes. “I’m not nervous.” He was scared. Two completely different things.
He couldn’t help but give a chuckle at her cocky attitude though, because she truly was right. She looked beautiful dancing on the ice, her legs extending and her body twisting gracefully as if she’s done this her whole life. Looking down at the kids, he was happy to see they looked just as amazed as he felt. It felt good, being proud of someone you love.
The fluttery feelings soon shut down when seeing her skate her pretty self towards him, knowing exactly what she expected. The twins as well. But seeing that sneaky little wink, reminding him of the fun of her, he playfully rolled his eyes and gave a small sigh. “Fine, fine. But if I fall on my butt, I’m blaming you.” He joked, placing his hands in hers and carefully, oh so carefully, stepping his feet on the ice.
( being a dedicated father and a loving husband is hard work )
Well, if she simply asked for it, she’d get what she wanted. Well… More or less. She bit her lip. Denying her hunger would be rather stupid, after all… “Fine,” she agreed flatly, looking him in the eye, “give me tomato juice… Please. And I’m sorry.” She straightemed a fold in her skirt. “Sort of,” she muttered under her breath.
Chase gave a small sigh, but had to shake his head in quiet laughter as well. She more or less acted like his children, so maybe his assumption wasn’t too far off. “Alright, come on in,” He told her, leaving the door open for her as he walked back inside himself, “Just sit down at the table, I’ll fetch you what you want.”
Though, as he gathered everything she needed, he did wonder why she was here. Questioning strangers wasn’t his hobby, even though nowadays it did really seem like it, but he really felt like he needed to know. Maybe he’d become more protective over the years- but whatever it was, he’d figure it out later. “Why did you come to this house, exactly? Surely you arrived here at the pier; it’s quite a walk to my house.”
Oh Goddess, it was hopeless pondering any further on what he mumbled from inside their chambers. Meanwhile, the darling blonde secured her silver snow-white skates to her feet. Her eyes glimmered at the beauty bestowed upon her, thankful for Julius adorning her skates out of his own spare time. One thing for certain, was the concept that every single villager was sincere and accepting of Muffy when she first arrived to Castanet.
There was no time for reminiscing since the sound of pounding metal against the wooden slick floor caught her attention. Carefully, she staggered upwards and regained her balance to stride over to Chase. “But it’ll be worth it, right? ♡” she giggled, affectionately pecking him back on his cheek. Following closely behind, the sight of their children enthusiastically jumping in excitement made her merely smile.
"Come on kids~!" Muffy ordered, interlocking her fingers with Mary-Kate’s and stomping through the snow to the frozen river. The dim sunlight hidden behind the clouds created a pale atmosphere, adding an effect of sparkles to the ice… perfect.
Chase gently took his son’s hand into his own, making sure to safely guide him to the ice. If Chase could even do so himself, that is. He really had to get used to this snow thing.
However, he had to admit, it was beautiful. Never having seen it in his own hometown, he only saw glimpses of it on tv. Causing messes in other towns, causing people to stay inside, just being a general pain in the neck; it never looked that pleasant to him. But now, surrounded by his family, standing in the soft pillowy white of it all, it was starting to look much better. Much much better- he needed to play in it with the kids much more often.
But first off was this…ice. Not as nearly as pleasant as the snow, seeing as how he’d slipped on patches of it plenty during this winter. Skating on it seemed just dangerous, but Muffy had assured him it would be fine, and well…she was usually right. But still, he wasn’t even sure where to start. Did he just go right on ahead and step on it? Jump on it? No, that’s surely break it. With his children looking at him for direction, he looked at the frozen lake nervously, than to his wife. “…Why, uh, why don’t you go first, honey?”
Yuki snorted flippantly. “I prefer the name ‘Ice Queen’, but I suppose you could file any name you like,” she hissed, an aggressive grin pulling at her lips.
"Besides," she purred, "I’m not exactly on the best terms with that deputy mayor, anyway." Her sneer dropped at the thought of him sipping defiantly at his pathetic glass of juice. At least she had more than he did.
Chase sighed, “And I’m not calling anybody ‘Queen’. Look, I’ll give you what you want- tomato juice you said?- if you ask politely. Like anyone else would. Queen or not, I respond to manners.” He responded, internally feeling a bit weird. It felt like he was talking to his children when he would discipline them. Felt a bit odd to do the same to someone who, at least looked, much older.
"Maybe if you apologize, I’ll give you a snack or something along with it. But." He shrugged.