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Author Topic: Making Peace (TakaGaki) Chapter 3 [12/06]  (Read 2438 times)

Offline yunagi

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Making Peace (TakaGaki) Chapter 3 [12/06]
« on: September 24, 2013, 09:57:33 AM »
Making Peace


Prologue

₪₪ When I was seven my father took me to a zoo. It was the first time I’ve been to one so naturally I was so stoked. I was young, excitement filled me to the brim that at one point I pulled away from my father and excitedly ran around, only to be stopped when my face acquainted itself on a glass wall. Even to this day my father never failed to remind me of that happening. Honestly though, I couldn’t remember much of what happened, my only reminder was that story my father told me, a few pictures he had taken and one short memory of a lone colourful bird.

I had asked my father “Daddy, why does the pretty bird look so sad? Does it miss its mommy and daddy?”

“That’s a good question honey… Hm, that may be it. It misses its mommy and daddy.” He said taking me into his arms and hefting me up so I could see it better. I pressed my face on the glass separating us from the magnificent creature, my palms resting onto the cool surface.

“Then why doesn’t it just fly away?”

I didn’t get an answer to that question. I never went back to that place, and in time the zoo was closed down and I never knew what happened to that beautiful bird. But as I look into cages and watch all the different birds make themselves cosy in their man made enclosure I wonder again, why don’t they fly away? Don’t they want to be free? To be able to fly to the sky, to be with their kind, go anywhere and everywhere they want. There must be a lot to see, places to be. Why stay somewhere wherein you’ll only see the outside behind bars and lattices and not experience it for yourself?

I find the answer years later, from a woman I met with a peculiar circumstance.

-o-o-o-o-o-
A/N: I have a little idea on where I’m going with this. I thought up of this while I was busy with something while reading something and doing something else.
« Last Edit: December 06, 2013, 06:36:18 AM by yunagi »
._.

Offline rndmnwierd

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Re: Making Peace (TakaGaki) Prologue [9/24]
« Reply #1 on: October 04, 2013, 07:43:48 AM »
Intriguing. Hope to see how it shapes out.

Offline MsSmigge

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Re: Making Peace (TakaGaki) Prologue [9/24]
« Reply #2 on: October 04, 2013, 01:36:41 PM »
OMG TAKAGAKI FIC!!!!! Ahem...  :lol:

This was interesting. Very interesting. Can't wait for more~


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Offline yunagi

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Re: Making Peace (TakaGaki) Chapter 1 [10/28]
« Reply #3 on: October 28, 2013, 04:17:28 PM »
>.>

<.<

._.


Chapter 1 - Morning After


₪₪ It was a Saturday morning. It was slightly fogging when I looked out the window; I guess it was from the rain that had occurred last night. I was getting ready for breakfast, going through the motions like I have always done and lastly picked up a newspaper. I was idly skimming through the pages as I would usually do, when I saw it. It was just a small portion of the otherwise large news print, easily overlooked if you weren’t paying particular interest to it, but it caught my attention. There wasn’t anything extra special about it, just that some woman was found near death after crashing her car on the side of the road on what police suspected might have been around 8 or 9 in the evening, while it was still raining hard. They didn’t stipulate what cause her crash, though they did think she was on her way out of the city, and that was only because they found a trunk of luggage at her back seat and her driver’s licence stated she was from Fukui. But that wasn’t what caught my attention. It was because of the name of the hospital she was taken to. It was where I worked.

I was pretty sure everyone in the hospital knew about the woman by now. They had brought her to the hospital the night before and for a small town like this, even without the news gossips about the crash was sure to spread all over by the end of the day. Never underestimate the power of bored hospital staffs.

As I have predicted as soon as I arrived at the nurse station I could hear the chatter of those on stand-by, even the ones writing on their clip board were listening in, try as they may not to seem obvious. I can’t say I wasn’t even a bit curious, in a hospital this boring even rumours of a bear doing the moonwalk would catch my interest, probably. Not that I would actively partake in the conversation if it were to occur. I try to seem inconspicuous, cool. Besides I was sure to hear about it sooner or later, whether I am told directly or through over-hearing other’s conversation about it. It was a small station. It would be a miracle not to over-hear bits of conversation.

“Hey, hey, did you hear about it?”

“She’s in this floor right?”

“Do you think she was driving under the influence?”

“No, she broke up with her boyfriend and tried to kill herself.”

“She saw a demon and panicked.”

“No the demon made her crash.”

So many rumours, none of them ever have the proof to back it up. I feel a bit bad for the woman, having all these rumours about her float around without her even knowing about it. I had half the mind to tell them to lay off, but I barely know the woman anyway and I’d hate to be the topic of the rumour mill. It may sound harsh but this is real life, she was the least of my concern.

I pick up my chart and notice two more patients added to my board. Must have been a busy night. I was about to go on my rounds when I felt a weight pressed on my back and an arm slung over my shoulder. I didn’t need to guess who it was.

“Riho~ you heard about that car crash victim last night, right?”

“Good morning to you too Kanon-chan, and yes I read about it in the newspaper.”

“Well, did you take a look at your patients yet?”

“You mean the two new patients. I just took a quick glance at them. Why? Is one of them in reverse isolation?” I say as I recheck my clip board.

“No. But one of them is the talk of the whole floor, congratulations Rihoriho!” I look at her over my clip board. She was smiling widely, then again I could never remember a time when she was without her smile. I check my board again and try to remember if there were any mentions of a name.

“Oops. I gotta go. One of my patient’s needs to take his medicine right about now. I’ll see you later.” I watch her figure scurry about the station, balancing a tray full of plastic cups and pills in one hand and her board with another. On her way out she nearly bowled over another nurse, I grin as I watch her apologize, nearly throwing every pill out of their container as she bowed. There’s never a dull moment with Kanon around.

I shake my head, better start with my rounds.


₪₪ I’ve seen and worked with a lot of people over the years. I’ve even seen some mentally unstable ones go about their day, once even catching one of them playing with his own excrement. I have listened to patients blowing up at me for various reasons that, most of the time, have nothing to do with me. I thought I was prepared for the last patients of my round, it was the car crash victim from last night. I’ve had crash victims under my care, not a lot since this was a small town, but the patients usually showed signs of PTSD in varying degree, depending on the level of danger the victim had gone through. I had thought about her since Kanon hinted me about her and had come up with various situations for when I come into her room.

I was not expecting what I see when I enter her room.

She was sitting quietly on her bed, the movable table situated right in front of her, but instead of a meal it was littered with scratch papers from magazines and perfectly made origami cranes, some even spilling over the table to her bed. When the door shut behind me her head rose up to look at me inquisitively, then she smiled.

“You must be the substitute. Come on in.” she said.

Like the other patients she was dressed in a green hospital gown, a little loose for her frame. I could see a faint line of a bruise below her neck and her forehead was enveloped with a while gauze, her short brown hair bunching up slightly around the back. There were also a few shallow cuts around her arms and face but that was it.

“Un.. I’ll be substituting for Fukumura-san. My name is Sayashi Riho.”

“Takahashi Ai.” The woman greeted back. She was a lot more pleasant than the usual crash victims, calmer even. Now I’m really curious as to how she crashed in the first place. As protocol calls of it I check her name on my board and on the chart, always double check.

“How are you feeling now Takahashi-san?”

“I feel fine. When am I going to be discharged?”

“I’m sorry, but that’s up to your doctor.” I check her IV bag, the only thing attached to her, and write down the amount of liquid left. I check her again. She was busy making another paper crane. Incredibly even with her left hand wrapped around a splint, which would usually hinder any form of activity with it, she managed find a use for it aiding her right hand, which was doing most of the work. I check the time. My next round isn’t until about an hour later. I don’t mean to pry, but there was just something about the woman that struck me as odd.

“Takahashi-san, I hope you don’t mind my asking but… why are you here?”

“Car crash.” She said simply. There isn’t a tremor in her voice, not like all the others, nor does she exhibit any post traumatic symptoms. She was rather engrossed on her paper crane making though. She acted like she admitted herself in rather than one waking up in an unknown room with a bunch of nurses coming in and out every two hours or so.

I pretend this is the first I’ve heard of it and try to fish for any more information out of her. “Oh, what happened? Did you lose control?”

Her hands stop their activity mid fold. She looks up, but not at me, her face devoid of emotion for a good five seconds before she looks back down on her half-finished crane, a grim look on her face. “I guess… I tried to kill myself.”

I hear a loud clatter from somewhere nearby. Takahashi-san turned her head, her eyes trained on the floor. I follow her gaze and realize that I had dropped my board from shock. I quickly bend down to pick it up and mumble an apology. I hear her chuckle.

“It’s okay. A few days ago if I was told the same thing I probably would have done the same. Funny how life can be, just a months and poof… It’s even funnier that if one can be an accident… another can be self-inflicted and yet still be viewed the same.”

“Excuse me?” I was lost. What was she getting at?

She smiled ruefully, her thumb running over half of the wing of her crane. “I promised her, one day I will make one thousand cranes and when I’m done and make a wish, our wish, I’ll put them all in a huge jar and put them somewhere where we’ll always be able to see when we pass. One day I’ll make our dreams come true... That day still hasn’t come.”

She turned to me, a small smile in place. “Shouldn’t you be heading back?”

“Uh..” I fumble with the board. Feeling uncomfortable I study her information sheet when I notice a blank box. “O-One question. Do you have any relative we could contact?”

She shook her head, once again busy with the paper crane.


₪₪I saw Takahashi-san three more times during my rounds, every time her pile of paper cranes grew larger and larger. She must really want to make a thousand paper cranes. She did say something about a promise she had yet to fulfil. I wonder how many she’s made now.

Her doctor have already paid her a visit, I was there when her doctor read her lab results and had decided to keep her in for a few more days for monitoring. Takahashi-san didn’t seem to be distraught by the decision, but she looked like she was only half listening anyway since her hands were busy.

That was four hour earlier, now it was the end of my shift. The last I saw her was just a few minutes ago. I had noticed the dwindling source of her paper and had bought her an old magazine I had stuffed in my locker a couple of months ago. She was pretty pleased at my little gift and had even offered to teach me how to make a crane. I couldn’t say no, unlike the rest of the patient’s in the floor she didn’t have anyone and I felt sorry for her. I thought I could humour her for a little while. I was getting off shift anyway.

After changing back into my casual clothes I walk back to the familiar halls, this time for the sole purpose of visiting. I arrive at her door and knock, waiting for her invitation rather than directly going in as I would have usually done. I hear her muffled voice and push open the door.

She smiles when she realizes it’s me and motions for me to come closer. I grab a chair on my way and situate it by her bedside, but I don’t sit directly. She hands me a piece of square paper she had already cut to the optimal size for the bird and takes another one for herself. I try to follow her instruction as best as I can. The first part was easy enough since all we do is fold and unfold it in different ways. After that it gets progressively complicated and sure enough I make a mistake. I wouldn’t have notice it too if Takahashi-san didn’t point it out. She told me what I did wrong and taught me how to fix it. A few more folds after that I had made my very first paper crane. It looked awful compared to Takahashi-san’s perfectly made crane.

“I don’t think I’m any good at this.” I tell her. Her eyes darts to me, her smile softens in a way that I can best describe resembles an elderly lost in memories of the past.

“No, it looks pretty good for a first time. I taught a friend before, now hers was just awful.” She laughed. “It didn’t look even close to a crane. I still don’t know what she did to make it look like that.”

“Is she the same one you promised to earlier?” I ask. In retrospect, I really shouldn’t have asked her like that, it was way too personal for some stranger like me to prod her private life. I clamp my mouth shut.

Her face fell into one of those sorrowful looks of having something precious taken away from her. She stares at her paper crane, gently pulling its sides to puff it up a little bit more. “I made a promise to a girl I met 21 years ago. It was her dream to have a small house in a quaint town where thousands of little birds can fly free in the blue sky… I can’t remember exactly when it became my dream too.” she chuckled. “Sorry, I sound like an old lady who’s got nothing to do with her time. I shouldn’t be holding you. You should go home. Someone must be waiting for you.”

“They can wait for a little longer. My mom always told me I should be socializing with people other than my co-workers anyway.” It was true, just the other day she tried getting me into a book club, said it was so I could meet other people.

“Are you sure? I don’t think I’ll be able to hold your attention for long, I’m not really an interesting person.”

I shake my head. “I’m sure Takahashi-san.” My answer gets her to smile again.

“Well… I would have continued making paper cranes, but I don’t think watching a woman fold origami is very entertaining.” She grins. Her eyes drop to her bandaged arm. The smile faded from her face and is quickly replaced by a worn out expression. She raised her head. Her brown eyes, earlier looking strong and full of determination, seem to adapt a forlorn look to them. “Sayashi-san, I think I know why you’re really here. You want to know why I tried to kill myself, don’t you?”

I think I must have look guiltier than I thought because she started laughing while waving her hand dismissively. “It’s okay. It’s only human nature to be curious. I’ll tell you my story, but before that will you be a dear and fetch something from my luggage?” she pointed to the corner where her things were. Her car must have been impounded. The police had come in earlier to bring her luggage in. I walk over to the bag.

“It’s in the small zipper at the front. There’s a letter there.” I unzip the pocket and sure enough I find a beige envelope, it was like the one’s sold with the scented stationary. I can still smell a faint aroma of rose from the stationary. Zipping the pocket I return to her side, passing her the envelope.

With great care she folded the flap back, gently taking out the stationary from inside. Unfolding the stationary she chuckled a little, holding up an origami, of what I couldn’t name. “Like I said, she was horrible at this. I’ve only ever seen her attempt this once. Honestly that girl…”

My eyes widen. I thought she was just exaggerating when she said it looked nothing like a bird, but now as I look at the crumpled piece of art… I’d say it looked like it was done by a toddler or chewed by one.

“I told her it looked like a cat ate it then spit it out, as a joke of course. She stormed off and wouldn’t talk to me for the rest of the day. After that I was always careful not to upset her too much.” She placed the paper crane on the table beside the pile she had already made, pressing softly onto it as if to prevent it from flying away. Satisfied she turned her attention back to the stationary, her eyes scanning the page quickly before she slowly read the message. “My Korean has improved… But I can’t say the same for my origami skill.”

I stood there, contemplating whether laughing out loud would upset her and if the message was one of those that needed decoding and if I could ask her the meaning behind it. The moment passed and I decided remaining quiet would be my best choice. Takahashi-san seemed to lose herself in her memories once more, her eyes having that vacant expression to them as she continued to stare at the short note. After a while she finally snaps back to the present, she looks up at me and smiles sheepishly.

“I’ll tell you why, but I have to start at the beginning for you to understand. I’m warning you, it’s a very long story.”

“I have time.” I say. She nods her head and raises her hand in defeat. She reaches over her bed to pat the empty seat I had situated there earlier.

“Then I suggest you make yourself comfortable.”
._.

Offline kuro_808

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Re: Making Peace (TakaGaki) Chapter 1 [10/28]
« Reply #4 on: October 28, 2013, 04:50:22 PM »
This is going to have a lot of flashbacks and I'm hoping for violent setbacks for the patient  :nervous
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Offline MsSmigge

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Re: Making Peace (TakaGaki) Chapter 1 [10/28]
« Reply #5 on: October 28, 2013, 09:31:54 PM »
Mio Dio Ai-chan in a car crash!!  :panic:

This was very interesting. Very very very interesting  :lol:

Can't wait for more! Great job!


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Offline yunagi

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Re: Making Peace (TakaGaki) Chapter 2 [11/18]
« Reply #6 on: November 17, 2013, 05:17:17 PM »
@Kuro: Yup, they're mostly flashbacks and I'm not so evil as to prolong the patients confinement or make it worse... or maybe I am.  :roll:

@MsSmigge: Well she did survive, though how long I'm going to keep her in the hospital hm... Thanks, I try my best to deliver.



Chapter 2 - First Encounter


₪₪ It was a sunny afternoon. School had already let up and we were free to do whatever we want until curfew our parents set for us. A group of my classmates invited me to play with them at the new play park that had opened just a few weeks prior. It was a little farther than where we usually played at but it was a new play park and my friends really wanted to go there that day, so I went with them. I remember it was a hot afternoon because not long after we arrived there I was already scouring the place for a water fountain.

As I was looking for the fountain I was also looking around the place. New swings, big slides all newly painted with no rust or peeling paints in sight. It looked pretty amazing in a child’s perspective, and to the nine year old me back then it did. I didn’t think there was anything more wonderful than a new park to play in with my friends. That was what every kid wanted back then, a place of their own where their parent’s don’t call the shots. I always thought every kid in town was there. It was a huge place and there were a lot of kids I didn’t even know there. It was a paradise of our own.

I was so absorbed in the sight of the new place that I forgotten to look forward. Predictably in a crowded place I walked into something and fell flat on my butt. It had hurt, but not enough to warrant a trip to the clinic. I did land on my bum and I was grateful for that. I couldn’t say the same for the girl I had run into. She was on her hands and knees, her form slightly trembling. She was wearing a red dress, one that stopped around her knees, and I knew then that she must have a scratch somewhere, especially when I started hearing the beginnings of the water works.

Getting up I dusted the back of my skirt and proceeded to help her up. She was trying to hold back her tears, her hands wiping away at her eyes. I try to dust her off the best I could, while apologizing, and in doing so I caught sight of her cut knees. They were bleeding.

“Don’t cry. Let’s go find a water fountain and clean that up.” I tell her. She nods her head, her two pigtails bobbing with the action, and hiccupped. I take one of her hand and guide her to the side, away from the playground. I find a water fountain soon after and lead us there. Despite the heat and the number of kids playing you would think that there would be a long line at the water fountains, but there wasn’t one when we got there.

I wet the handkerchief I had in my pocket and lightly dabbed at the wound, imitating the way my mother would treat us whenever my little sister or I got injured. She had gone silent by then. I could see her watching me through my peripheral vision. Her face was smudged with dust making the tear streaks visible and she was biting her lower lip, keeping them from trembling.

After making sure the wound was clean I fished around my bag pack for the band aids my mother put in, in cases of emergency. I find them in one of the inner pockets and gently plaster them over the girl’s wound. Thankfully the cuts weren’t big.

“There, all better.” I tell her and smile, just like what mom would do after she treated us. “Does it hurt anywhere else?” I ask. She shakes her head.

“Hey, I’m really sorry. I wasn’t looking to where I was going. Can you forgive me?” She nods her head. I smile in relief.

“Wait here.” Standing back up I go back to the water fountain and rinse my handkerchief. When I deemed it clean enough I walk back to her. She was still seated where I left her, staring at the band aid. I crouch down beside her and begin wiping the dirt off her face. I do it gently, like my mother taught me, cupping her face in one hand while the other lightly wiped the dirt off.

When I was finally done I was feeling very hot and tired and I realize that having looked after the girl I had completely forgotten that I was thirsty to begin with. Saying a short good bye I go back to the fountain, greedily drinking up every mouthful of water I could get. I take a handful and splash some on my face. I was taking another handful when I feel a tap behind me. I repeat the act once more before I step aside for the next person. To my surprise it was the girl, I thought she would have left after I went to drink water.

“Thank you… for taking care of me.” She mumbled.

“It’s no problem, it was my fault anyway. I couldn’t let you go without making sure you were alright. My mother wouldn’t be happy with me if I did.”

She looked up at me, her frown slowly turning into a smile. She looked really cute with a smile.

“Ai-chan!” I hear my name being called. I look to the side where I find my friends waving me over.

“My friends are calling me. I guess I’ll see you some other time.” I tell her as I wave back to my friends. “So, good bye.” I say as I stuck my hand out.

She nods her head and takes my hand, shaking it slightly. “Nice to meet you…”

“Takahashi Ai.”

“Niigaki Risa.”

That was the first time I met her. Of course, back then I didn’t really think I’d be seeing her again. Like I said it was a huge place and there were a lot of kids there. What were the odds that I’d be there when she was? True we didn’t meet again at that park, there was a park closer to the school and that’s where we played most of the time.

The next day, during recess, I along with my friends went down to the court yard to play ‘Daruma-san ga koronda’. I wasn’t a great player, but it was unusual for me to be ‘it’ unless I was chosen. That day I was assigned as ‘it’ on the first game. Other kids joined in, that was how the initial five players became sixteen. I counted.

“Ai-chan! Okay!”

“Okay!” I shout back and turn around to face the tree we set up as base. “Daruma-san ga ko-ro-n…da!”

I turn back to the group of kids and begin pointing out the one’s I saw moving. I repeat the action again and again, gathering a number of kids chained to me when I caught them moving, until I felt the break of the chain I had when someone finally got close enough behind me. I hear the thuds of feet on the ground as the group scatters and I swivel around and shout “Stop!” and every player freezes. I scan the place, looking for the nearest person and made sure I take wide steps, no more than three, and tag the next ‘it’ and the game restarts. I was getting in line with the rest of the players when I caught sight of a familiar face and her twin pigtail moving back towards the school.

“Ai-chan, the it’s over there.” I hear a voice mention and a tug on my sleeve.

“Huh? Ah, yeah. I’m going to… get a drink. I’ll play the next round.” I say and start heading towards the school. It doesn’t take me long to find the pigtailed girl, she wasn’t walking fast. I quicken my steps until I was right behind her.

“Hey.” I reach to her shoulder and give it a short tap and she turns around.

“Ah… Onee-chan from yesterday.” She says and points at me, eyes wide as almonds.

I grin. “It’s Ai.”

That was the second time I met her.

She was a year below me. She transferred just recently, that was why I’ve never seen her before the park incident. I tried to get her to play with us, but she shakes her head, pointing to her knees. I forgot they were scratched and blushed slightly.

We met up again during lunch, she was eating alone, too shy to get along with the other kids. I kept her company throughout the rest of the period and the day after that. Days passed and she got the courage to talk to her other classmates, got along pretty well with them too. But every recess we always found each other, away from our usual group. We would sit under the shade of a tree, keep each other company and talk about anything we can think of. It was one of those little wonders of being young, being able to make friends easily without worrying over anything like thinking about reputation and such. There weren’t a lot of things that mattered except that she was my friend and I was hers and we liked each other’s company.


-o-o-o-o-o-

I think I may have forgotten what it's like to be a kid...that or I had a really suck-ish childhood
That was so hard to write >.<
« Last Edit: December 06, 2013, 06:36:40 AM by yunagi »
._.

Offline kuro_808

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Re: Making Peace (TakaGaki) Chapter 2 [11/18]
« Reply #7 on: November 17, 2013, 05:51:23 PM »
Their fated meeting as kids seem to have developed into adulthood

Great chapter!!!
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Offline yunagi

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Re: Making Peace (TakaGaki) Chapter 3 [12/06]
« Reply #8 on: December 06, 2013, 06:35:27 AM »
kuro_808: Yup. Friendship during childhood developing into mutual interest as they grow. Perfect for a romance fic. Not that I'm saying this is purely a romance fic or if it really is a romance fic...

Gonna be a shorty.

Chapter 3 - Spreading Wings


₪₪ It was my last year in primary school. Risa and I were best friends by then. We still went off to find each other during lunchtime, it was more of a force of habit than anything though. Don’t get me wrong I loved her company, but at that time I was still a kid, thoughts like these haven’t really crossed my mind yet. All I know was that I was to meet Risa at our usual spot by the shade and eat lunch together, and that was that.

That was why during the last weeks I had left in school I felt that eating with Risa started to feel rather odd. Risa didn’t seem to have any intention to speak with me, and I had absolutely nothing to say to her, so we both stayed silent during our meals with each other. It was uncomfortable but we have been doing this routinely that it was even weirder when we weren’t with each other.

Finally one day I had enough of the silence. We met up at our spot, Risa didn’t say anything, though she did regard my presence with a nod of her head, as what she’s been doing for the past days. The action was really getting to me. I was now more determined to break this silence we had somehow grown accustomed to for the past days. The problem was that I had absolutely no idea how to start. I wasn’t much of a conversation starter anyway. So there I was, an open bentou on my lap, chopsticks held limply in my hands and all I was doing was glaring holes at the tips of my shoes.

I sigh, resting my head back on the tree bark. I was hopeless. I’m even surprised we managed to stay best friends for all these years. I was probably the worst person to hold a conversation with. She always complained about me not listening to her when she’s talking or that I zone out a lot. The thought brought a smile to my face. She was one amazing person, to have been able to stick with me through all the years and not get bored of me.

What if she was bored of me now? I was going to graduate in a few weeks. Next school year we won’t be in the same school, and I won’t know when we’ll see each other again. Suddenly I’m scared. I didn’t want to lose Risa as a friend. I sneak a glance at her, she’s concentrated on her bentou. I feel the anxiety building up as the fact that I’m graduating finally dawns on me. What was I to do?

A chirping brought my attention to a lone sparrow perched on one of the tree branch. I’ve read something about birds in literature class, I think it was supposed to mean “one being freed” or “freedom”. Now that I think about it, that made a lot of sense, birds could fly anywhere they wanted, all they had to do was spread their wings, muster up their courage and fly.

I held my hand up, palms upwards as if I was reaching for the little sparrow. Risa must have noticed because when I turned to look at her she was looking up at the tree branch, her eyes squinted as if to find what I was reaching for. I let my hand drop to my side, at the same time the sparrow jumped off its perch, spreading its wings and flying away. Risa jumped at the sudden action but soon smiled as she realized what it was. I guess it was about time I learned a thing or two about those birds.

“Gaki-san, do you like birds?”

“Un. I like them! Aren’t they great Ai-chan?”

“You know, in literatures they’re supposed to represent freedom. That makes sense right? They’re free to do what they want, go wherever they want and nothing can keep them from flying into the horizon but themselves.”

“Wow, Ai-chan… that was pretty poetic there.” I turn away to hide my blush, but I don’t take long. I had more pressing issues I needed to see through before I could lose face. I take in a deep breath. “Hey, Gaki-san, are you getting bored of me?”

Her head turns to me at this, her brows creasing in the middle as she regarded me with a frown. “Why would I get bored with you? You may not know it but you’re a pretty interesting character.”

“You’re just saying that to make me feel better…” I mumble.

“What are you saying? Really, I’m not bored of you. I can never get bored of you. What made you think that anyway?”

That was my opening and before I can think too much about what I was going to say and lose my confidence I continue. “Because, you haven’t spoken to me in days, and I’ve been feeling that you’ve been distant with me.” The last part ends in a mumble. I couldn’t look at her anymore. I don’t hear her answer right away, something in my gut drops and I’m feeling even worse as I did initially. I stare at my bentou, my appetite lost.

“That’s because…” I hear her say. Her voice sounds different from her normal though. Was this it? Possibly the last conversation I was going to have with her. I’m afraid to hear her answer but I pulled up all my courage and refrain myself from running off. I was going to see this through, whatever the outcome may be. “Because I’m scared.” She finally finishes.

My eyes are wide open as my head snaps to her direction. She had pulled her knees to her chest, hugging them to herself, her bentou lay by her side. Her face is partially hidden behind her knees so that I can only see her eyes, her very expressive eyes. I’ve been staring into those same eyes for so long that I could pick up even the slightest change in her demeanour just by looking at her eyes. It was not something a normal friend could just easily pick up, a fact that I have overlooked for so long. This time I can see them perfectly. Fear. Sadness. But of what?

“I’m scared. When Ai-chan graduates… Next year you won’t be here anymore. I won’t be able to see you as easily as I can now. When that happens… I’m just scared to lose you.”

And then I am not scared anymore. It was like the chains around me have finally been unlocked, I feel lighter. I put my bentou down and shuffle closer to her and, in an act that I rarely show to other people I pull her for a hug. I feel her stiffen, I could practically imagine her confused face, but a short while later I feel her arms wrap around me. “I won’t go anywhere. I’ll always be here for you. I promise.”
._.

Offline kuro_808

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Re: Making Peace (TakaGaki) Chapter 3 [12/06]
« Reply #9 on: December 06, 2013, 07:09:45 AM »
This sounds like a one-shot by itself but it seemed to get at Gaki-san's feelings of Ai-chan moving on. :nervous
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