The Colors Universe

A Note for Murasaki by Tress

Characters: Kou-kun, Mikan-tan
Word Count: 841 words
Theme: Aesthetics
Author Notes: The extent of my own try at this has been messing around with a brush and dictionary, but its nonetheless fun even if you don't know what you're really doing. If I'm not wrong, Murasaki's name looks like this.

Kou padded quietly into the kitchen, flipping on the light with his elbow to ward off the darkening gloom of the drizzly afternoon, and stepped forward to carefully place his load on the kitchen table. Hooking a chair towards himself with one foot, Kou started arranging his supplies on the spacious table, nudging things into straight lines and square corners as was his casual habit. Satisfied, he was just sitting down and reaching for a small jar when Mikan sauntered in from the living room, drawn by the warm light from where she had been kneeling over the back of the sofa, aimlessly watching the raindrops splash, bead, and run down outside the window.

"Whatcha up to, Kou?" Mikan asked, coming closer. "Painting?" she guessed, seeing the familiar mug full of brushes on the table. Kou had chosen a fine-tipped brush and set it down next to a package of oversized brown paper. Mikan leaned over, noticing that large red grids marked off a white cloth mat directly in front of Kou, criss-crossed by diagonal lines.

"But what's this? And why," she continued, peering at the jar Kou had just unscrewed and placed back on the table, "are you using purple paint?"

"Well," Kou finally managed to reply, "you know the wall scroll hanging outside of Murasaki-dono's room?"

"Hm... the one with the butterflies and flowers, right? And a... poem in Japanese or something, I think. It's pretty," Mikan admitted.

Kou nodded.

"I was examining it the other day, and Murasaki-dono saw me. When I asked where she bought it, she told me she had painted it herself."


"Yeah, I was surprised, too. It's obviously well done."

Kou paused, pulling a brown page over the mat. The lines were still faintly visible through the paper.

"Well, I considered asking her if she might make something like it for me, but she said instead she would even be willing to teach me if I wanted to learn. So I'm borrowing her old beginner's calligraphy material to practice." He tapped at a thin workbook, held open flat with another book along its top edge.

Mikan looked impressed, and a glance at the book showed that it had the sectioned out squares under each of the large characters printed on the page.

"Calligraphy, huh?" she murmured to herself, testing out the new word.

Mikan was quiet for a moment as she watched Kou dip his brush in the dark purple ink and then screw up his face in concentration, cap tipped slightly back as he carefully traced a character onto the practice grid.

But not unexpectededly, Mikan soon grew tired of only watching. Flicking her eyes to the darkness outside, she decided that she may as well make use of the time she had to stay indoors.

"Why do you have to keep writing the same characters over and over, Kou? So boring!" Mikan straightened from resting her elbows on the table. "Let me try!" she demanded.

"There's plenty of paper," Kou replied mildly. "I only have one of these mats, though," he protested.

"I don't need lines," Mikan answered confidently.

Kou shrugged and selected a similar brush from the mug, its white hairs faintly tipped with purple from previous use.

"Here," he offered, pulling out another rough brown sheet as well from the stack. After a few minutes of instructing Mikan how to hold the brush vertically and giving her another workbook to look through, he turned back to his own attempts.

He looked up several minutes later, perplexed with the problem of getting the brush to go just so at ninety-degree turns to see that Mikan had started haphazardly covering her page with random characters as she flipped through book, but had now degenerated to doodling around the edge of the page, sketching pictures to match the nouns she had chosen.

"Mikan," Kou said. Mikan looked startled. "It's easier to practice if you have some end goal in mind. Why don't you try writing something to someone? And then if you write the characters more than once, you can make it neater each time. See, you want to match the proportions of each part of the word-"

But Mikan had already stopped paying attention after the first part of his suggestion and was paging furiously to find the words she wanted to write.

"Can't find it! Kou, how do you write..."


When Kou brought everything back upstairs later to have Murasaki critique his final practice page, he handed her an extra folded sheet. She could see his fingertips were tinged purple from the stubborn ink.

"Ah, this is for you. She had a bit of trouble with your name at first," he laughed.

Murasaki unfolded the page to find a short crooked column of characters, the last word largest because it contained so many parts. She smiled at the clumsy but obviously exuberant effort.

"Good morning, Murasaki!" the page proclaimed with apparent disregard for the actual time of day. It was merely signed with purple orange and a large smiley face in the corner.

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