Ryunosuke was back quicker than one would expect. Maybe he should have waited for the water to get a little bit warmer… or for the tea to steep a little bit longer… But he was hasty to see Saitou again. An unexpected excitement rose in the boy when he saw the violet haired samurai at the gate, and it wasn’t until a moment alone in the kitchens that Ibuki realized he was still smiling.
Without spilling the tray, Ibuki set down the tea and a few onigiri he found in the kitchen. (who knows who they were meant for, but taking a few would do no harm) Ibuki sat down next to Saitou and pushed the tray forward. “Here, I thought you should eat too. You probably haven’t had the good stuff in a while.”
Saitou could undoubtedly take care of himself, Ibuki knew that. But it didn’t stop him from wanting to make sure the young warrior was taken care of upon his return. Wanting to make him feel welcome again.
Saito sat in silence as he waited for Ibuki’s return, eyes shifting around the room as if to once again reacquaint himself with lost surroundings. How long had it’d been since he’d last set foot inside these walls? It wasn’t like him to lose specific count, but it had been far too long, and truthfully — he wasn’t even sure he’d get an opportunity to return in the first place.
But that was a thought for another day, and as if on cue, Ibuki returned (still excitedly) with tray in hand.
“You didn’t have to go out of your way,” he said, voice calm and certain as always. “But thank you,” Saitou paused briefly then, if only to meet his gaze. “Ibuki.”