Also, just in case it needs to be specified, “Tsuru” — the Japanese word for crane (the bird, not the machine) — is pronounced like “Soo-Roo” and “Tsubame” (swallow) is pronounced like “Soo-bah-may”. Those pronunciations aren’t necessarily 100% right, but probably the closest I can get them in writing. If you can read IPA-style pronunciations, they’re listed under the Wiktionary entries.
Amara comes into the room with the two girls from Yamatai, holding her hands and pulling her along after them.
“Kat! Kat! Look! See how pretty Miss Amara is!” the girl on the left exclaims eagerly — Kat can’t quite tell if the girl in question is Tsuru or Tsubame.
Amara is wearing… something: a complicated-looking outfit with an inner garment beneath an outer robe with long, billowing sleeves almost literally topped off with a bow. The sash around Amara’s waist is tied off into an elaborate knot.
“What do you think, Katherine?” Amara asks expectantly, posing for her friend. “Kokoro tells me this is the traditional dress in Yamatai. It’s called a—” Her face falls. “—I’m afraid I don’t actually recall.”
“It’s called a kimono, Miss Amara,” the girl standing at her left notes.
“Yes. That’s it. It’s called a kimono, Katherine,” Amara says. “Thank you, Miss Tsubame.”
“I’m Tsuru,” the girl, all but indistinguishable from her twin, notes.
“Ah. I do apologise,” Amara says.
The girl grins. “No. I’m joking, Miss Amara. I really am Tsubame.”
“Very funny,” Amara mutters. She turns back to Kat. “Have you ever seen a garment so relentlessly elegant, Katherine? It is just utterly sublime, isn’t it?”
The outer robe is dark green to compliment Amara’s eyes and ornately adorned with flowers. The sash around her waist is gold like her hair and its brightness contrasts the dark colour of the robe.
“Yeah,” Kat notes. “It’s pretty good, I guess.”
“She doesn’t like it,” Tsubame notes sadly.
“She doesn’t like it,” Tsuru agrees.
Amara puts a reassuring hand on each girl’s hand.
“Oh, pay her no mind, my dears. That’s the most ringing endorsement we’re ever going to get from Katherine,” she says. “For some reason, she enjoys being all cool and aloof like this. I’m sure she’s secretly burning with envy, though.”
“I’m really not,” Kat says.
Tsubame and Tsuru exchange a glance and seem to instantly communicate through some sort of secret twin sister telepathy. Grins spread across their faces and as one they turn towards Kat.
“We should find a kimono for Kat!” Tsubame declares.
“We should!” Tsuru agrees.
A matching grin appears on Amara’s face.
“Why, Tsuru, Tsubame, that sounds like a wonderful idea,” Amara says, barely able to conceal her mischievous smirk.
Kat starts to feel like a seal being sized up by a school of Turbosharks.
“Don’t you dare,” Kat warns, desperately eyeing the nearest window to make her daring escape.
Before she can leap for the window, Tsuru and Tsubame leap for her, grabbing her hands and begin to drag her towards the door.
“Do try to be gentle now, girls,” Amara tells them.
“Amara,” Kat mutters. “I hate you.”
“Oh, don’t be so churlish, Katherine,” Amara replies. “You know you love me.”
“This is going to be so much fun!” Tsubame says.
“So much fun!” Tsuru agrees.
“Kat, you’re going to look so pretty in your very own kimono,” Tsubame tells her.
“So pretty,” Tsuru agrees.
“Now, girls, what colour do you think you look best for Katherine?” Amara says, clearly having the time of her life at Kat’s expense.
“Blue!” Tsubame says.
“Pink!” Tsuru says.
“Amara, I hate you,” Kat says.
Which is to say, my February daily writing begins. It’s much less ominous in context, I swear.
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