|Ripples in Red Water
Author: Empathic Soul PM
UPDATE! Love is not something that you should simply decide to hold on or simply let go. Because the greatest irony of love is holding on when you have to let go and letting go when you have to hold on. ShuichixYuki. Please read and review.Rated: Fiction T - English - Romance/Angst - Eiri Y. & Shuichi S. - Chapters: 25 - Words: 112,638 - Reviews: 255 - Favs: 65 - Follows: 41 - Updated: 08-04-06 - Published: 08-02-04 - id: 1992895
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Ripples in Red Water
Chapter 8: A Cherry Tree that blooms over Snow
The Truth always hurts
By: Empathic Soul
Author's Note: This has been a very very long time since my last update. Ahihi
PLEASE READ AT YOUR OWN RISK
BE FOREWARNED: This chapter includes angst, drama, and a LOT as in a LOT of violence! Please do read this with care and understanding. Absorb it so that you would get some of the subtle hints for the plot and do so understand the characters as well. Thank you so much!
The dinner went well much to Shuichi's pleasure. It was very hard to retain that much energy so that his comrades would not notice his pain. He knew that they exerted much effort on him during the days that he was raving. He barely could remember things but he was pretty certain that he was no angel. He agreed to this dinner because it was the least that he could do to thank those people that cared for him during those days.
During dinner, it was pretty fun. Everyone was happy and all smiles. Ryuichi managed to eat so much that he could barely stand up. He ate almost half of the food that Tohma bought for them. Mika was almost disgusted with the childish manner that Ryuichi ate, but still managed to remain cool. She almost acted motherly by wiping the mouth of Ryuichi once in a while.
There's really nothing new with Tohma. He simply smiled there, silently observing and then talking to Yuki once in a while. He spoke of things such as concerts and businesses, even asking Yuki once in a while to drop as a guest in one of the TV shows that Tohma was sponsoring.
Ryuichi on the other hand, remained as energetic as he was. He threw Kumagoro up and down as he ate and tried to pull a prank on one of the waiters as she passed by. Mika only managed to stop him.
Shuichi was having a blast until he felt like his world was going in a carousel. Tohma seemed to notice and asked for the bill. It seemed like a sign that they were about to leave.
Tohma managed to convince Ryuichi that Shuichi needed time alone tonight because he needed to regain his strength by having enough rest. By having enough rest, he would be able to regain his energy quickly. Mika offered that Ryuichi stay overnight in place of staying in Shuichi and Yuki's apartment. Of course, this happened only after a few bribes and glares from a certain blonde with amber eyes that the said singer actually agreed to stay in Tohma's place. It evidently made Yuki and Tohma sigh in relief; it was only through sheer luck and cunningness that they were not noticed.
When the two reached their apartment, Shuichi could not think of anything else but to go back to sleep. His limbs are sore, his muscles are aching, and his skin still felt hot to touch. Although he doubted that he would be raving like the last time—though he barely remembered anything from that experience—he still wanted to grab a few moments of precious sleep rather than trying to push himself to his limits.
So Shuichi pushed himself to walk silently to his room and plop down his bed and finally take some much needed rest. But he did not notice that Yuki watched him intently, gazing at the small back of this pink haired singer, just making sure that the boy can still walk. He knew that Shuichi was just faking his excitement, his happiness, and his energy a while ago; he was not even fooled even for just a moment. The boy was sick and IS still sick. It's very difficult to do that stupid acting.
But who was he to know. Stupid things were done by stupid people.
Birds of the same feather flock together…
I'm not stupid.
Only stupid people understand other stupid people.
Damned inner voice.
Call me the most sensible part of your entirety.
Well, people tend to fall in love and act as if reason did not exist. What do you call these people? Stupid or idiots right? Therefore, what does that make you?
Yuki placed a hand on his head and simply shrugged to himself. He lifted his head up to glance at his lover and simply creased his brow.
He saw Shuichi wobble and then try to straighten up. He tried to bounce up and down as if to almost fake his energetic behavior.
Yuki felt a growing migraine.
"When did this boy become too stubborn for his own good…he could barely walk?" Yuki thought. He gazed at Shuichi's drunken movements. "He's better than that Chinese drunken guy."
He closed the distance between them taking long strides to reach the boy. Yuki suddenly pulled him up in his arms, carrying him like a bag of potatoes. Shuichi looked shocked at the sudden gesture from his lover but did not bother to comment at it. Why would he? It's a one in a million event. Yuki looked as if he wanted to say something. It appeared like some sort of expression that he wanted to say something nasty in order to protect his horrible reputation from being nice.
"I'd rather carry you like this, rather than when you're unconscious. You're heavy enough when you're awake, what more when you're not." Yuki grumbled under his breath without even looking at the boy in his arm.
Somehow Yuki was afraid. Yeah, he was. He was afraid to look at Shuichi's sincere amethyst orbs. Eyes so contradictory to his—cold and uncaring, fazed with ice as reflected by his name.
"You didn't have to carry me…" Shuichi muttered weakly towards the novelist while resting his head on the blonde's chest.
"You want me to drag you?" Yuki asked sarcastically and received a wild shake of the head. "So stay still so I can get you to my room."
That woke Shuichi up. He stared at the man who carried him as they headed towards Yuki's room instead of Shuichi's room.
"W-why? I can't stay in the same room as you! You might get sick like me!" Shuichi shook his head as he felt himself gently being placed down a soft silk mattress. "Yuki, I'm going to my room."
"In case you forgot, you wrecked your beautiful room yesterday." Yuki hovered at the man sitting on the bed looking astounded and then smiled sheepishly towards him.
"Oh yeah! I threw all the stuff in that room causing such a big ruckus and then broke the door open!" Shuichi remembered the incident. "But it was your fault! You locked me in there!"
"I would have probably done better if I just tied you to a pole." Yuki countered and Shuichi pouted at him. Yuki dared not to stare as he could literally hear the walls of his heart crumbling to a heap. I am an official weakling.
"Would you really do that? I AM sick!" Shuichi looked incredulous and unbelieving. His puppy dog look never left his face. Miniature tails came out of his rear as he gazed at the novelist.
"You did not look sick this morning. Whoever heard of a sick person breaking the door into a pile of wood ash?" Yuki scrutinized the boy who continued to make a long face in front of him.
"I am sick and you know that!" Shuichi frowned and Yuki simply nodded with that sarcastic look on his face.
"Great. At least this time, you're not trying to act like you're not. You immediately admitted it. Excellent learning capacity, Shu-chan." Yuki placed a hand over Shuichi's forehead and then took out a thermometer. He placed it in the mouth of the vocalist and sat on the chair beside the bed.
Shuichi looked at the man beside him and tried to hide the smile that crawled to his own face as Yuki scrutinized him with his keen amber eyes. Yuki immediately caught the small smile and so he raised an eyebrow towards the younger lover.
"What?" Yuki asked, intrigued as to why the boy was looking at him like that.
"Nothing Yuki. It's just that, you've never been this worried for me. I'm kind of…flattered." Shuichi blushed. He hurriedly looked away so that Yuki would not see.
Yuki blushed on his own as he buried his face underneath his bangs to look at his suddenly very interesting set of slippers. He lifted his head when he was sure that the blush was gone and looked back at the boy who still had his head turned the opposite side.
"Really?" Yuki asked softly and Shuichi slowly looked back at him.
"Yes! I could not remember you showing this kind of affection towards me. Usually, you're cold and distant…" Shuichi smiled at the man who simply looked at him. "But…I don't mind that because you're Yuki. Because that's who you are!"
Yuki merely acknowledged it physically with a nod. But his insides started to flutter with happiness as Shuichi mentioned those words. Simple as they sound, but they meant a lot to Yuki. It meant that someone is finally accepting him to who he is and not because he's popular, or even because of his physical attributes. This young boy accepted him with all the scars and the wounds, willing to stay with him and help him heal.
His thoughts were interrupted when Shuichi spoke again.
"Yuki…what it when I find out what my past really is, can you still accept me? Can you…still love me?" Shuichi wondered not even daring to look at the other man's face.
Yuki wondered what the boy was getting at with those statements.
Is this boy doubting his love?
He was torn off his thoughts when Shuichi continued his statements.
"I'm afraid Yuki. All those memories that I've been getting back recently had me very confused about who I really am. I don't even know if Shindou Shuichi is my real name." Shuichi smiled sadly to himself as he looked down on the blankets that covered his legs while he sat up.
"And I don't even know who to believe in anymore. I can't even ask anyone who I am…" Shuichi looked at Yuki this time as the writer listened intently to his reflections. "Yuki, there were a lot of things that happened in my life that I remember now…you told me yours…I want to tell you mine…"
Yuki nodded without any words. It seems as if words are not needed at this time. All he needed and all he WANTED to do were to listen.
"As far as I could remember…I was born in a wealthy family of three children. My older brother, Shun, older sister, Suzu, mother, Risa, and my father Shinji. It felt to me like I had a happy childhood to say the least. But then again, it turned sour when the day that I lost my memories occurred." Shuichi looked up at the ceiling, tears cascading down his cheeks.
"I loved my dad very much. He became my best friend, my confidante, my older brother, and my father all in one. My brother was always nice to me too. It was weird, he was only nice to me and our father and not much to my sister and my mother. I had so many wonderful experiences with them, but…when my dad died of an accident…" Shuichi shook his head, swallowing the lump in his throat. "That was the day that everything changed."
"Six months later, I saw my mother…" Shuichi gripped the blankets tightly. "I saw my mother dead in her room, swimming in her own blood. It was my brother who seemed to have killed my mother and assaulted our own …our own sister. But during all those moments, there was a part of me that doubted this memory. I do not know why, maybe because I have my own biases towards my brother, because I love him very much, but…I still don't believe in my memories."
Shuichi raised his left wrist and removed his watch to reveal a scar. He moved so that Yuki can look at it closely. Yuki gently picked up his hand and looked at the wrist intently.
"My brother slashed me there. But you know what, he was crying…I did not know why he was so sad. I even had a memory that he apologized first before he slashed me. It was painful, but the more painful part was…"Shuichi sobbed uncontrollably as tears rushed down his face.
"The one you love is the one that hurt you." Yuki continued and Shuichi confirmed it with a nod. "I know how that feels."
"You know Shuichi, I guess it feels more painful when someone you care for hurts you. Because you've placed that person in your heart. Compared to someone whom you barely know…"
"During those days, I relied a lot on my brother. He's my role model and my father too. I love him so much…in a very fraternal way. But…that…day everything that I idolized about him broke into a million pieces. Somehow, someway, I want to have that amnesia back so that I could not feel that pain, I do not want to remember the sound of the breaking pieces of my heart and most of all I do not want to relieve that memory ever again."
Shuichi buried his face in between his palms and cried so much. His tears flowed down his cheeks and he looked up pained and desperate. Yuki merely took the initiative to sit beside the boy and lift the boy up from the bed and place him on his lap. He let the boy's tears stain his shirt as Yuki leaned his chin on the head of the boy.
"Yuki…I don't want that to happen again. I don't want to lose the most important person in my life and feel my heart break into a million pieces again. I don't want to remember anymore if I can only remember such miserable thoughts. I don't want to bear it again."
"But you have to…." Yuki interrupted feeling the trembling Shuichi in his arms causing him to tighten his embrace.
"Shuichi, you can never overcome your demons if you keep on running away from them. Like what I did…" Yuki whispered the last part but Shuichi still managed to hear it. Shuichi merely kept quiet in Yuki's arms silently listening to the beating of Yuki's heart.
"Running away will never do anything to you. It will only cause those nightmares to continuously haunt you then suddenly you'll realize that one day, you can no longer run away." Yuki looked up as he glanced at the ceiling then turned his head down to gaze at the young vocalist's face. He used his index finger to lift the face of Shuichi so that they would be looking at each other.
"I know. I know that. But…I'm too scared to even run anymore. I'm too tired to even keep on moving. I want all of these to end already. I don't want to feel anymore pain as I am feeling". Shuichi embraced himself while leaning on his lover's chest. "I feel so alone in this. I don't know if someone could feel the same pain…this substantial amount of pain that I am feeling. I don't know if I could share this pain, without hurting or giving them the burden of this problem in the process."
"Let me share your pain Shuichi." Yuki said in hushed tones. "You have shared mine…this time I want to share yours."
Shuichi shook his head.
" can't. You'll be burdened with my pain. I cannot allow you to be hurt, you've experienced your share of pains in your past…I don't want you to experience more." Shuichi did not see that Yuki merely smiled at that.
"But Shuichi, sharing your pain and my pain is part of the package being lovers." Yuki explained cupping the face of Shuichi so that the younger one would be able to look at him eye-to-eye. "I share your pain, your happiness, your sadness, your anger, as you share mine. Shuichi love can never be one-sided especially in this relationship."
"I don't know which book you took that from." Shuichi teased a smirk appearing on his face.
"Well, I'm a writer of romance novels. I assure you I don't plagiarize." Yuki smirked his eyes gleaming in predatory gazes. "Unlike you, who is zero talented who needs me his ultimate inspiration so that he could write songs that doesn't even have the correct rhyming words?"
"What? I did so write my own songs!" Shuichi pouted.
"Whatever, songs even a first grader could write." Yuki teased.
Shuichi almost laughed but he felt like he couldn't. Yuki knew that the joke failed to meet its purpose so he just tightened his embrace towards the boy. Silence reined them for a while until Shuichi spoke.
"Yuki…" Yuki hushed the boy by placing a finger on Shuichi's lips.
"If you share your pain with me, we can make it more bearable. And please, don't say that I don't understand or that you're alone. Because I understand you, and perhaps more than anyone else could. Shuichi, you were never alone. I'm here, your best friend Hiro is here, your band mates are here, even that weird manager of yours is here."
"Well, I think you mean best friends. That Sakuya guy is my childhood best friend." Shuichi smirked at the memory and Yuki nodded.
"Humph, I hate that guy. It feels as if he's just annoying too damn annoying." Yuki grumbled.
"Well, tell me something new. You hate everyone." Shuichi shrugged while looking at Yuki's reaction.
"Yeah, even you, I hate you." Yuki nodded. He did not even try to counter the statement.
"Yuuuukiiii!" Shuichi wailed and almost threw a tantrum when Yuki smirked.
"Yeah, I reaaaalllly…really…. Hate you…." Yuki smirked lowering his face on Shuichi's so that they were already nose to nose, his lips almost touching the other.
"You see Shuichi…" Yuki continued from where he was cut off. He placed a soft butterfly kiss over the pink-haired man's lips and continued. "And you have me. Remember? You said I'm yours."
"Oh yeah…" Shuichi blushed and looked away only to lean on his lover's chest. He remembered that day when he shouted in a crowd of people that he "owned" the novelist. He blushed slightly and felt the tightening of the embrace.
'Yuki…" Shuichi muttered.
"Hmm..." Yuki took a more comfortable position by leaning on the head board of his bed and pulling his legs up so that they are both comfortable simply cuddling with each other. He felt Shuichi adjust his position so that he is comfortably leaning on Yuki's chest for support both literally and figuratively. "What is it Shuichi?
"Thank you." Shuichi smiled even though he knew that Yuki did not see his smile. However, even without looking and seeing him, Yuki somehow felt the smile.
"I love you." Instead of replying 'you're welcome' Yuki chose the words that would mean more than that. He smiled when Shuichi suddenly sat up in surprise.
Yuki's eyes squinted when Shuichi placed a hand over his head. He glared at the pink-haired vocalist who suddenly transformed into his banana costume. Yet again Yuki did not see when the boy changed his clothes or where he got that banana outfit.
"You must be running down with a fever. You're being overly romantic Yuki…" Shuichi shook his head.
"Idiot." Yuki grumbled almost feeling the romantic emotion running to a fast decline.
He was surprised when Shuichi, without the banana outfit, embraced him tightly and suddenly whispered four words into his ear.
"I love you too…" Now it was Yuki's turn to smile when Shuichi said those words.
"You really are an idiot." Yuki commented.
"You're so mean!" Shuichi pouted as he moved towards the pillows to find a more comfortable position to finally get some well deserved sleep. "But since I'm too tired to continue this argument, I would be going back to sleep. I'm so tired…. Good night…Yuki…"
Yuki simply gazed at the boy without even saying a single word. Shuichi immediately went to dreamland the moment that he laid his head on the silk covered pillows. Yuki finally gave in and sat beside the boy running his hands on the hair of the vocalist. Shuichi did not even bother to change his clothes. To Yuki, he knew that the boy must be extremely tired. Actually, he himself is a bit tired. After staying awake for almost three days straight, it was hard to actually say that he still had enough energy going on.
Actually, he could feel his legs wobble as he walk and his eyes slowly drooping during long and boring conversations during dinner. He could not even begin to imagine how Shuichi feels especially now that he's really sick and well pressured to remember all those things in his past. Not to mention keep up with the bubbly vocalist of Nittle Grasper.
Merely remembering a single episode in your past that was supposed to be forgotten causes painful headaches and triggers different sicknesses such as coughing out blood, he almost choked at the reminiscent events, Yuki could barely imagine the pain of trying to remember every single event in your past. For one thing, the stomach pain is evident it would cause you to spit out blood while having coughing fits. That was one symptom he hated.
He looked down at the boy that lay silently sleeping beside him. Yes, he was saying a lie when they entered the room. Shuichi was not heavy; actually Shuichi lost a few pounds if not a few kilograms after those series of events. Yuki feared that if things continue as they are going; it might turn for the worse. And those were the days that he seems to fear.
He was glad for this moment. This quiet moment of solitude, where everything seems calm and serene. He was thankful…
As of the moment
Yuki yawned as he opened the sheets and lay beside his lover. He placed Shuichi's head over his arm and wrapped his other arm over his lover's waist. He felt like protecting Shuichi this time. Usually, it's Shuichi that protected him from his bad memories that kept on haunting him from time to time. And now, it's his turn to become the protector. And he swore that he will. Under all the circumstances, he will protect Shuichi as much as he could.
If only he could gaze at Shuichi the entire night. Even for this night, he would gaze at him and etch his face into his imagination and memories so that even in dreams he could see his face so vivid and so full of life.
But he suddenly remembered about his book. The long overdue book that he had to pass by the end of that month.
Yuki stood up and went out of the room to head for his office and continue his novel. He is just about to finish the story. Actually, this is the first story that he wrote which seems to be more directed in pure romance with only a hint of angst. But with the way things are going in his life, the angst seems to turn the original plot into a different story.
But regardless, he's pretty fine with the way the story is going. He is indeed an angst romance writer.
He sat on his chair feeling completely awkward with trying to write his story at such an instant. But as he gazed at Shuichi's sleeping form, he finally got the inspiration to write the second to the last chapter of his new novel. He already asked for too much extension from his editor. Perhaps he should get on with his own writing instead of actually trying to buy for another deadline. He had to finish this novel before this week ends. And right now, is a good time to write a new chapter.
Filled with inspiration, the only sound that could be heard in the silent apartment is the sound of typing echoing in the vacant halls and rooms of the home.
To be continued
Please read and review