Actually I'm going to backtrack to the start of this story. IIRC, this story (untitled) is later titled "Gene" in Ono Fuyumi's collective doujinshi 中庭同盟. It's an everyday life story of Noll's and Gene's.
"Gene, are you up?"
Gene shot upright in bed at the sound of that voice. He'd turned off his alarm clock and had been snoozing.
His bedroom door opened, and Luella poked her head inside.
"So you were asleep."
"I'll get up. Where's Noll?"
"Unlike someone, Noll doesn't sleep in."
Gene jumped out of bed and quickly got dressed. There was no need to get out of his pyjamas. He'd been up late the night before and had only stripped out of his clothes before climbing into bed.
He grabbed his bag and started stuffing his books inside. Most of his books were in his locker at school, but sometimes he needed to bring some home. Hunting things down from the mess on his desk takes time. Rummaging through the mess to find what was still missing only resulted in more chaos on his desk. Shoving the things that had fallen to the floor aside with his foot, Gene ran out to the hall and down the stairs. Mornings were always very quick for Gene.
"How do you want your eggs?"
Everyone was already in the dining room by the time Gene came down. Gene popped into the kitchen at Luella's question and glanced over the breakfast she'd prepared before deciding.
He gave her a quick good-morning kiss.
"Good morning, sleepy-head. How about cleaning your room a little?"
"I'll do it on Saturday."
"Without getting Noll to help."
He gave a quick salute before heading for his own seat. On his way, he kissed Martin and Noll as well. Noll would hate it, so in his case, it was to bug him a bit.
Martin was reading the paper. He was still in his dressing gown, so his class probably wasn't until later.
Seeing that, Gene 'knocked'. It was up to Noll if he replied. The 'door' as Gene called it, opened.
"What're your plans for today?"
There was a response to his question. Actually, it's closer to catching a thought that floats to the surface from a sea of thoughts and becoming the other person's thought.
"I'm going to Prof. Hinels."
"Second. I need you to take my place."
"Okay. Have they caught up yet?**
"I've skipped for the past three weeks, so it'll be getting risky soon."
Noll often skipped classes. He'd skip and sneak into university classes or to the specialists (researchers?) office. His attendance record was always borderline--borderline with Gene taking his place from time to time, so in reality his attendance was even worse.
A plate was placed before Gene as he replied.
They called their telepathic conversations chatting. When they were small, they were able to chat with the Atlantic Ocean between them, but lately, that distance had begun to shrink, and it was difficult to do if they weren't in the same country. They could no longer force the door open and enter the other's thoughts either. Their psychic abilities had started to wane, but that was probably just as well.
Apparently, Luella was the only one able to tell when the two were chatting. Even she didn't know why. Not to mention that not many people knew about their chat ability.
Since it only worked between the two of them, they hadn't experimented with or studied the ability much. As long as it was between family members, they could discuss anything regardless of how difficult the subject may be, but with anyone other than their twin, they couldn't even manage guessing one ESP card. Most likely, the channel between them was so strong because they were twins, so Luella told them not to talk about it too much. Luella didn't like the twins being human guinea pigs.
"You two chat when you're up to good."
"Not at all."
Luella lay a plate in front of Noll as well.
"And Noll looks away like that when things aren't going his way."
Martin put away his newspaper.
"You shouldn't skip. You especially, Noll."
"What are you talking about?"
"I got a call from your school about your being sickly and whether we'd taken you to see a doctor."
Gene ducked his head while Noll looked away.
Oh? Martin's eyes widened.
"Apparently, an unusual guest has been showing up in Timothy's classes lately."
Like Martin, Timothy Grey was an instructor at Queen's College. He taught physics, specifically quantum mechanics.
"You need to be more aware of how much you stand out."
Noll continued to stare off to one side.
Martin smiled wryly. Normally, they didn't use 'father' or 'mother', so when they did, they were making their dissatisfaction known.
The sound of Gene's laughter brought him under fire.
"You too, Gene. Don't help him."
Sheesh. Martin smiled wryly. Ultimately, he was soft on those two.
"There's no need to rush like that. Once you get your GCE*, you can enter university, right? You've got the marks to get accepted."
The GCE exams are this winter. If he could have taken them earlier, he probably would have done so, but apparently doing his A-levels without attending second semester was difficult even for Naru. Not to mention getting into Cambridge required having two A-levels. Apparently, he's been studying hard, and lately, he always had a textbook open in front of him.
Gene had no intention of hurrying that much. He intended to attend middle school and graduate like normal, and think about things at that time. Rushing ahead towards his goal was Noll's way. Taking things as they came and deciding what to do then was Gene's. They really were different.
"Don't push yourself too hard."
Luella pat Noll lightly on the cheek.
"You were up late last night, weren't you?"
"Your light was on when I woke up at 3. You should sleep eight hours a night or your body won't be able to keep up."
"I'll be careful."
Noll wasn't comfortable with physical contact. It was strange how uncomfortable he was with it. He could extremely coldly reject people he could ignore, but it really put him on the spot when it came to people he couldn't ignore. That's why they were so physical with Noll. It was one of the things Gene and Madoka did to tease him. And maybe even his parents were doing the same.
And after that, we enter the discussion of pumpkins. :P Sheesh, I must be hard-wired to type "Naru". :P I think I had to replace just about every last one of them. ^^;