Disclaimer: I do not own Flame of Recca or any of the characters. I’m merely using them for my own pleasure. Please don’t sue me. Thanks.
A/N: Here we go...the original parts 3 and 4 are in here. ^-^ Like I said, I’m making way for some other plans I have in mind. BTW, people have asked me about the ToFuu relationship here...ah well, it’s going to seem like it’s this brother-sister thingy...but that will change. I have to change Iceman’s hormones first. ^^;;
Part 2: Finding you
::A lazy afternoon…
The hazy sunset.
Two lovers, hand in hand…
Just you and me.::
Fuuko sat on the lonesome swing and started to rock herself gently, watching the sun sink and take its place by the city. She cradled her right arm, which still was bleeding. It still hurt, yes but she didn’t want to use Mikagami’s piece of cloth. For one, it would be stained ...it looked so damn expensive.
::It was about time I took care of myself anyway::
She closed her eyes, feeling the wind brush through her hair gently. Softly, as if it were whispering songs to her. Fuuko found comfort in this quiet place where she used to go as a child whenever she felt lonely and sad. She took a liking to swings, finding them relaxing to sit in. She let the wind take her away for a minute.
Fuuko loved air. It was her favorite element after all. And her key element, she reminded herself. Maybe that’s why she and the fuujin were destined to be with each other.
“Just the same with you and I...” she mumbled softly.
Thunder and wind. Destined to fight. Destined to be with each other. Both causing a storm. His first words to her. They were destined to fight each other.
::How I miss you so::
She sighed softly, another tear trickling down her face made its way down her lap. She was used to crying. Alone. Not in front of people. That’s why she had to run out. She was afraid to face them. Why?
::They’d misjudge me::
Right. Rejection was something Fuuko feared to the core. They thought that everything would be easy after 10 months. It wasn’t. It isn’t easy letting go of someone. Not for her, at the very least. She wondered if anyone would get the message.
“I knew it was you.”
Fuuko jumped up from the swing and tripped. She fell straight into the grass and her arm wasn’t spared at all. She groaned and rolled over to see who her attacker would be, as she balled her fists and got ready to punch the idiot who nearly scared her out of her wits.
Unfortunately, the ‘idiot’ grabbed her fist in time. Fuuko, startled, looked at the person, overshadowed by the tree. She opened her mouth in wonder. Long hair and a lean frame. Tall and silent.
::Is it you?::
The hand let go of her’s and he stepped forward. Fuuko stared into the man’s eyes, hoping it would be a dark shade to confirm her wish...
but they were ice blue.
Fuuko stepped back as he stepped forward. The hair was not dark violet but silver-gray. Wrong again Fuuko, she told herself and found Tokiya looking at her in a weird manner, as his hand came up and he quickly tied his long tresses in the same old-fashioned ponytail she had seen him wear countless times.
“What? Don’t give me that look, Kirisawa.” He explained, after tying the last knot, securing his silver-gray mane. “I didn’t mean to scare you.”
“You’re an idiot!” Fuuko yelled at him, also furiously embarrassed and angry with herself for thinking that he was Raiha for the _second_ time in history.
“Gee, I always wondered if and when someone would have the courage to tell me that.” Tokiya replied. “Look, I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to scare you or anything.” He repeated.
“What were you trying to do?! And why was your hair actually down? Are you trying to fool me into thinking that you’re Raiha so that I would stop crying and acting like some weepy girl?”
Upon hearing the answer, Tokiya started doubting his motives once more. Why did he ever put up with unreasonable women? “Fuuko, where the hell did you get the idea that I’m trying to look like Raiha? For one thing, when you jumped off that swing, it hit me therefore pushing me against the tree. My ponytail came off, okay?” he stated in a very impatient tone. How could she mistake him for Raiha when he was nowhere near to looking like that man?
She glared at him. She hated this. Why did he have to come and ruin her moment alone with herself?
“Kirisawa, your arm. How come it isn’t bandaged properly yet?” He inquired, taking noticed of the nasty cut that had formed on the girl’s forearm and elbow.
“The cut is partly your fault because you scared me. I fell on the ground, remember?” she retorted, trying to avoid the subject.
“Yeah, well that wouldn’t have gotten worse if you covered it up.” He replied. “Stop arguing with me. You’re going to lose this one.” He told her firmly. He picked up the white hanky on the ground and held her arm up with his other hand.
“I’m okay, I can take care of myself.” She protested.
“Stop insisting that you can, Fuuko.” He warned her. Quickly, Tokiya wrapped the wound with the cloth in his hand. He fixed it slightly and knotted it in place. “There.” He said. “If you didn’t know how to do it, you could’ve asked me when I bumped into you earlier.”
Fuuko yanked her arm away from him. “I know how to do it. I don’t need you to act like a know-it-all to show me.”
Tokiya rolled his eyes. “Kirisawa, I really don’t know what’s getting into you these days. All I did was try to help you...” He trailed off. Fuuko sat on the swing once more and he saw tears were falling down again. She continued to push herself, a bit faster this time.
Okay...so maybe he was being a bit too aggressive. He approached her. “Fuuko...”
She shook her head violently. “Please leave me alone now.” A quiet voice told him sorrowfully.
No. He had already made his mind about the situation. He placed a slender hand on her shoulders to stop her from swinging. This time, he said firmly, I’ve made up my mind. I’m not doing this only for Yanagi, but also for you. You need help.
::I said go away.::
“Didn’t you hear me?” Fuuko asked him coldly. “I said I can deal with this by myself Mikagami. I don’t need you and your sympathy.”
She had had enough of this whole mess, anyway.
“I don’t think you’ve been doing fine by yourself Fuuko. It’s affecting everything in your life.” He said quietly. “You need people to help you with this.”
“And you think you could make everything right?” she stood up immediately from the swing and faced him daringly. “You’re one of them. All of you are the same! You all pity me...you never give me a chance to be by myself! Don’t you know that I find comfort in being alone, Tokiya?!”
“Fuuko, I don’t pity you.”
“Then what are you trying to prove to me? That I’m weak? Oh, so now you can gloat about Fuuko, the poor girl... You don’t know anything about what’s going on inside me. Yanagi, Recca, that idiot Domon...you all think it’s easy losing someone you’ve loved for 2 years..” her eyes blazed with wretchedness and anger.
Tokiya grabbed her shoulders. “Listen to me!” he said sternly, his blue eyes flashing, too, for a split-second. “I KNOW what it’s like to lose someone you love and is close to your heart. I’ve loved her for my whole life and I lost her in one instant.”
“Loving someone and losing them hurts, I know that. I’ve had 17+ years to figure that out and I never did until this summer. I didn’t do it on my own, Fuuko. Someone helped me. It is HARD. But it’s harder when you’re all by yourself. And I can prove it to you because I’ve learnt it the hard way.”
Pools of dark blue versus shards of ice. She continued glaring at him.
“Don’t you see?” he continued “You’re acting the very same way I did when I lost Mifuyu. All of your friends are reaching out to you but you’ve built a wall around yourself so high that anyone who tried to climb it ends up falling down and gets hurt. I don’t want you to end up like me, who had to suffer for 18 years...”
Fuuko stared at Tokiya for a while, a bit surprised at what he told her. Him? Actually admitting his true feelings to her? This was too good to be true.
::Boy, Mi-chan...you have changed.::
It still wasn’t helping her.
“So I guess Rome helped you, huh? Then maybe I should go there too and see what it’s like. Maybe it could help me with my problems.” She said dryly. “Listen Tokiya, I don’t have time for this crap right now. I know what you’re trying to do. You’re aiming to be a counselor and everything.”
“Fuuko...were you actually listening to what I said?”
“And to make things worse, I know you’re not doing this for me or anything else...you’re doing this to gain plus points in front of Yanagi! Like what’s the deal Mikagami?”
Her eyes pierced his. ::I’m not learning anything from you.::
Tokiya’s eyes widened when he heard her mention Yanagi’s name. What IS wrong with her? He thought irritably, closing his eyelids. I’m not doing this only for Yanagi. I’m doing this for YOU too.
“Fuuko, it’s not for Yanagi. That hurt you know.” He said quietly.
::Well, you’re not the only one who’s hurt here.::
“Tell me this, Tokiya.” She asked him, “Why the heck are you bothering yourself with me? I mean, if it’s definitely not for Yanagi, which I am beginning to believe is TRUE, then what is it for? What’s in it for you? Because I truly believe that Mikagami Tokiya would NEVER help anyone unless it had something good for him or for his dead sister.”
Ouch Fuuko, his eyes said. Have I grown a reputation as far-fetched as that? He asked himself. Boy Mikagami, you still have work to do and some stuff to improve, he told himself. Still, his main goal was to help Fuuko. And he probably isn’t going to stop trying until he succeeds. Not until she’s okay.
Wait a minute, why the heck is he doing this anyway?
Tokiya heaved a big sigh and opened his mouth to answer the girl, only to find that there wasn’t anyone in front of him anymore. Fuuko was gone.
Tokiya arrived at his apartment and closed the door behind him gently. He was tired, dead tired. It was one hectic day for him. The start of the morning wasn’t pleasant. He was greeted by 2 professors, asking him about the contest he was about to join that day, making sure if he studied, blah blah blah. Tokiya wished he could snap his fingers and let them disappear for just one minute and leave him in peace.
For the first time in history, he didn’t study the night before. Still, it was no miracle that he survived the day and managed to bag 2 gold medals. He had enough knowledge stored in his mind. What made it so difficult was the fact that he was near to being trampled over by a dozen females, who wanted a piece of him. Tokiya growled, put on a nasty expression, even to the point that he snapped at a few people yet those girls would never give up.
If it were not for Mifuyu’s constant lessons on respecting women, he would have had those bimbos on the floor with his ensui.
Even though his attitude changed, he was still the number one guy in his school. Girls longed for him, guys envied him... Nothing failed to make the female population swoon and sigh in front of him. It was disgusting and he felt like escaping to the moon at times like that. Who invented girls with 2 digit IQs anyway?
Tokiya exhaled loudly, closed his eyes and slumped on his couch. He came near to falling asleep as his muscles relaxed against the soft cushions. The morning was nothing compared to what happened in the afternoon. Keeping him more perplexed was Fuuko. After trying to talk some sense into her (his first attempt) she immediately insulted him –no, she actually accused him of doing a secret mission for Yanagi. How could she? Tokiya frowned. He was trying to help, and sincerely. Who brought Yanagi in the subject?
Of course, secretly, he was indeed helping Yanagi. But the main purpose was to help Fuuko. It was out of a request from Yanagi, his sister and that priest from Europe.
“Mataku...” Tokiya sighed. He wasn’t even 100% sure why he was bothering to help her anyway. His old, icy demeanor would have caused him not to give a damn on anything that happens in her life. He would have left her alone, or even slash her into pieces if he had heard her talk to him about that issue with Yanagi.
But he was different now. He was well on his way to recovering from the wounds of the past. He decided a few months ago that he was fed up being such problematic person. He didn’t want to waste his life any longer. This is what probably drove him into trying to help his former teammate. Like he stated a few hours ago, he didn’t want her to experience the hardships he had. But she refused to let him help her.
Now he knew what the others felt like when they were trying to talk to him too. He regretted that badly. Still, things have changed and the tables have turned. Tokiya had this strong feeling that he just had to help or he wouldn’t have any peace of mind until he did so.
He had this gut feeling that it was his oneesan bugging him.
His thoughts were cut short when his phone rang. He opened his eyes and his arm stretched lazily to pick up the extension lying on the table next to him. “Moshi, moshi. This is Mikagami speaking.”
Yanagi? It sounded like her. Why would she call me right now? He asked himself.
“Tokiya-senpai?” The voice repeated.
It was Yanagi. He confirmed it so and opened his mouth to answer. “Hai Yanagi. What brings you to call me right now? Is everything okay?”
“Ahh, yeah...everything is fine. However, I was wondering, if I could see you tomorrow. I need to talk to you. Would it be alright?”
Tomorrow is a Saturday, he thought. But why would she want to talk to him? “Sure. I don’t have anything to do anyway. Where would you like to meet?” he inquire politely.
“I was thinking of the new coffee shop that opened in downtown. Would 10 am be fine with you?”
“Hai. I’ll be there.” He promised.
“Arigatou Tokiya-senpai.” he heard her say gratefully. “I’ll see you tomorrow then. Good night!”
“Good night.” And he hung up too.
That was weird, he concluded. Out of the blue, Yanagi calls him up. She would never have called him unless it would have something to do with Fuuko.
Fuuko again. Suddenly, she became the center of everything and the main root of his problematic state of mind right now. He felt tired of thinking. He didn’t have to do this...but like the previous inner debates he’s had...He glanced at the clock. 10 pm. It was still early but he decided to go to bed. Fatigue was about to swallow him any minute now. Mindlessly, Tokiya entered his bedroom and fell on the mattress. Before he knew it, he was asleep…basking on the dreams heaven granted him.
::Blood. Red liquid. The source of human life.
I want to see it pour down
And drown me and my sadness
It was cold, and it was raining. What a dreary day, he thought as he walked briskly down the streets, heading to the place where he and Yanagi decided to meet. It was a good thing he brought an umbrella with him. It was a last minute thought as he stepped outside his apartment and saw the sky looking so miserably gloomy.
In less than 15 minutes, he was standing in front of the coffee shop. Before going in, he scanned the place and saw Yanagi sitting by one of the tables by the windows. He went in, shaking the wetness from his legs and arms.
She looked up as he approached her. “Ohayo, Tokiya-senpai” she smiled and stood up to greet him.
He returned the greeting with a slightly smaller smile. “Ohayo Yanagi-san.” He removed his jacket and placed it by his umbrella as he proceeded to sit opposite of the young girl. He turned towards her and placed his arms on the table, lacing his fingers together.
“So, what brings us here?” he asked, getting straight to the point.
“Yes.” She nodded, “But before that, I ordered coffee for both of us. I hope you don’t mind if I took the liberty of doing so. I got the regular, just to be sure.” She stated.
Tokiya nodded. “I don’t mind. In fact, I appreciate it.”
“I should be the one to thank you, Tokiya because you came here. I’m very sorry if I called you late at night just to ask you to stop by here...” She hastily apologized.
He waved it away with his hand. “It’s alright. Don’t worry about it. So what are we talking about anyway?”
Yanagi bowed her head slightly. “It’s about Fuuko.”
He knew it was coming. He leaned forward. “Okay. What about Fuuko?”
“I know you’ve noticed how cold she’s been acting. I mean, you must have because you did go after her yesterday. I don’t know what to do about it anymore.” Yanagi sighed sadly. “She’s always moody, she’s drifting away more frequently. She even ignores us most of the time. Come to think of it, it seems like she’s forever avoiding us for no possible reason. We’ve only done so much to comfort her about Raiha’s death yet she turns away from us. I really have no idea Tokiya-kun on what to do with her. She’s built these walls around her...and it is so hard for all of us. It hurts too, because I never expected that she’d be like this. All we want is..”
He nodded. “I know. I tried to talk to her yesterday but all she did was lash back at me.” He shook his head slowly. Tokiya studied her pale face, which reflected sadness so deep that he resolved to help her out. No matter what happens.
Yanagi continued. “It’s really sad. She’s my friend, and I hate seeing her like that. She doesn’t even want to talk to me right now. I tried calling her up last night before I tried to call you, but all I got was her answering machine saying that she wasn’t in the mood to talk to anyone at the moment.”
Tokiya could see tears brimming in her eyes. “Yanagi,” he said slowly, while handing her his handkerchief. “Fuuko’s undergoing a lot of trouble and pressure right now. As I see it, she’s still not yet ready to open up just to anyone. Now I know you’re her good friend but even best friends need time off each other. I know, because I guess you’ve seen me act that way since you met me.”
“But Tokiya, you’ve changed already. I can see it in you.” Yanagi said, her eyes lighting up for a bit and she held his hand. He nearly withdrew it, but relaxed after a few seconds. It’s been a long time since anyone held his hand. He was again reminded of Mifuyu, through Yanagi’s kindness.
“I’ve had 18 years to do so,” he reminded her. “It’s only been 10 months for Fuuko, so I wouldn’t expect too much judging from what happened yesterday. You should probably give her time. She has been through a lot. I know it wasn’t right for her to treat you that way…but you’ve got to see that she’s been hurt terribly. It takes time for wounds like that to heal.”
At that moment, 2 steaming cups of coffee were placed in the middle of the table. Yanagi took one and inhaled the aroma coming from the brown mixture. “What scares me most is that she might do something to herself. I don’t want anything to happen to her.”
Tokiya sipped the coffee. “I don’t think so. I suppose she’s more sensible than that. Besides,” he placed his cup down. “I’m here to help, right?”
She nodded. “Yes, and I’m so grateful that you’ll try to talk to her. No one in our group has been successful.”
“Well, she got mad at me yesterday.” He informed her.
“Oh dear.” Yanagi sighed. “Demo, I’m still glad that you’re willing to try. Thank you. I owe so much to you, Tokiya.”
“It’s nothing Yanagi. I think I’m also doing this as a favor to my sister.” Tokiya’s eyes closed for a moment. “And I really don’t want Fuuko to have a hard time like I did. I know what it was like and it wasn’t very pleasant. Somehow… I’ve got to make her see that.”
“That’s wonderful Tokiya.” Yanagi squeezed his hand gently, then raised her cup to drink from it. “I’m just wishing that...” she stared outside the window for a moment and her eyes widened with shock. “Hey...is that...Fuuko?” she asked.
It was raining cats and dogs outside the warm place. Tokiya put his cup down for the second time and took a peek. The window was fogging and it made it hard for him to see anything. Yet there was a figure across the street with no umbrella or protection whatsoever. Tokiya squinted his eyes. He recognized the mop of unruly purple hair. “Yeah, it’s her...! What the hell is she doing out there?!”
“We have to get to her, she might be freezing!” Yanagi stood up and made a move to go outside. Tokiya raised his arm to stop her. Just what WAS Fuuko doing out there? He wanted to make sure that it was her.
He continued watching and saw Fuuko raise a small thing, which glinted silver through the mist and place it above her arm. There was no doubting that she wasn’t Fuuko. Tokiya stood up abruptly and dashed outside. The rain fell down, swift and cold. There was a small hint of thunder among the skies. Tokiya pushed through the crowd, weaving in and out while muttering hurried excuses, and sprinted across the street.
No. She wouldn’t do it. She was smarter and if she did, I’d would kill her. Don’t be an idiot Fuuko, he gritted his teeth as he went by cars and through the slippery sidewalk.
“Fuuko! Hey, Fuuko! Don’t do it!” he yelled as he came closer, praying hard that she would come to her senses and chuck the blade away.
Fuuko lifted her head and stared at him for a few seconds before she quickly placed the knife down her wrist. Red liquid trickled down her forearm, forming a jagged line. She looked at it like a maniac and simply stood there, under the element that soaked her whole body.
“Fuuko!” Tokiya rushed in front of her and grabbed the knife from her hand. He flung it away, as it hit the ground and shook her shoulders. “Kirisawa, why the hell did you do that to yourself? What the hell are you thinking about?! Hey, look at me!” He stared into her blue eyes, which were empty and dazed.
She gazed at him for a few seconds and whispered something he couldn’t hear. Fuuko breathed heavily and closed her eyes.
“Fuuko, no!” Tokiya shook her even harder. The lithe figure he held, fell lifelessly in his arms and he struggled to keep her balanced. Her arm fell limply and blood continued to soak her sleeves and drip on the ground.
No. Do not give up on me, Kirisawa. Fuuko! Wake up, you stupid girl... His mind screamed, while his voice called out her name endlessly, and his arms shaking her body.
::I want to see him...let go of me.::
I won’t. You don’t deserve to go yet.
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