|Hidden Greed, Hidden Grief
Author: Genesic PM
But no matter how he tried, he could not keep his greed concealed. One-shotRated: Fiction T - English - Hurt/Comfort/Romance - Jack - Words: 2,491 - Reviews: 12 - Favs: 12 - Follows: 1 - Published: 06-29-09 - Status: Complete - id: 5177278
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
I don't own the Harvest, but I do own the Moon.
To everyone in Mineral Town, it was a symbol of pride, a symbol of beauty. His fields were overflowing with the most delicious looking crops, and the most beautiful flowers. They all believed it was a show of how honest work and selflessness could pay off. They were proud of his accomplishments, they were proud of him.
To him, it now was only a reminder of his worthlessness.
Jack stood silently in the night air, staring at the field with utter disgust. The healthy vegetables made him want to cringe, and the beautiful flowers were enough to make him cry. He hated looking upon this field, but, for tonight at least, he had to.
In all honesty, it wasn't the field he hated….it was himself.
It hadn't always been this way. When he first came to this town, it was the means of a dream to him. He wanted nothing more than to make a living as a farmer, his intentions were pure.
Working on the fields was always hard, but felt more rewarding with each passing day. As he grew in skill, the crops grew as well.
The villagers were like a second family to him as well. He was received with open arms, and warm smiles. He felt as if he had known them all his life. Truly he believed this place was a utopia.
But, it was not meant to last.
Despite all he did for others, despite all the hard work he invested into his farm, and despite how hard he tried not to be it; he was selfish.
Karen, Elli, Mary, Popuri, and Ann; these beautiful women left him awe struck from the moment he saw them. As time went on, he grew closer to all of them. They became important to him, more so than anything else, even his original dream. They all loved him too, admiring his kindness and hard work.
He was foolish, far too foolish.
He treated them all with compassion, his kindness attracting them like a magnet. He would stop by and talk with each one, bringing a little gift each time.
The relations soon began to affect even his fields. He would plant their favorite crops or flowers in his fields, another notion that added to his "kind" image. A large section of Pink Cat Flowers for Elli, it was one of her favorite flowers. A patch of strawberries, to make Popuri's favorite dishes. He did similar things for each of them. If he thought somebody was unsatisfied, he would grow more of what they liked, not thinking of the consequences.
He began to hate himself after a while, the words of praise began to burn. All those lies of him being kind and selfless. He couldn't bare to lose the love of even one of the girls, he was selfish. No matter how much it hurt though, he kept it a secret, he let everybody believe that he was that perfect person.
But things couldn't last forever, everything must come to an end. No matter what he did, he was only one person. The girls slowly began to drift away from him.
Maybe they thought they couldn't compete with each other, maybe they realized his secret, maybe he just wasn't the one for them. Either way, they continued to drift away as time went by. They found new loves, people who would focus on them, and them alone. When Jack was around, they would never meet his eyes(whether it was disgust, pity, or shame; he never knew).
And so he was alone. His greed had led to his own destruction. That one little secret of his had taken away all he loved, even his field.
And so he sat there, staring at the perfectly divided field. There was the exact same amount of beloved items for each girl, even though they no longer had anything to do with him. This wasn't his field, this wasn't the field he had dreamed of creating, it was a twisted product of his greed, a monstrosity.
"….Damn it…" He cursed to himself quietly, doing his best to fight away his selfish tears. The pain grew with each second. Each flower was a reminder of a beautiful smile, meant only for him. There was no one else he could blame for this, it had all been his own doing.
His dog whimpered, rubbing its head against him in an act of sympathy. It's tail wagged as he patted it in thanks.
He knew there was only one way to escape this, and he had already made his choice earlier. He had sold all his animals, save his dog, earlier today. He was sure word had already spread around town, and that there might even be a small panic for his sake. But he knew this was the right choice. "This is the last time I'll look at this field, huh?" He laughed bitterly.
His beautiful house, his furnishings, even his beautifully tended crops would be left behind. He didn't want any reminders of his foolishness. Even the money he could have gotten for selling them would have been too great a burden for him. Maybe whoever eventually took his place could make use of everything here. He could only hope they didn't make the same mistakes as him.
"Come on, it's time to go." He muttered to his loyal companion; who barked happily. Armed with nothing but a rucksack full of essentials, and the dog at his side, he walked away from a broken dream.
The road leading away from Mineral town was filled with the villagers, all abuzz with the moment's excitement.
"Damn." He cursed again, his hopes of a quiet exit shattered. He trudged on through the onslaught of pleads.
"You're one of us!"
"I'm sorry…" He muttered, looking at the ground.
"Why are you leaving?" Stu and May, who had been like younger siblings, looked at him with teary eyes.
"I'm sorry…" He muttered again, feeling the tears welling up in his eyes.
And when he had made it through the crowd, he turned for one last look. He saw the eyes that had avoided meeting his, now staring at him; full of tears and regrets. He paused for one second, before quickly continuing his leave. "….I'm sorry…."
Even when he was out of hearing range, he could still hear their cries.
Forget-Me-Not Valley was a beautiful place. The people were nice, the land was beautiful, and even the farmland was perfect.
But it was too much like Mineral Town to Jack, and that made him worry. He had no other choices though. This was the only place he could find cheap farmland, and he wasn't ready to give up his dream yet.
He had met most of the people already, the town had an even livelier community than Mineral Town. The people carried the same spirit of those from Mineral Town too. He had been met with nothing but smiles the entire day.
Despite all this, he still had the feeling of dread flowing through him. Would everything really be okay this time? Or would it just be another failure?
He drove the hoe into the soil, eager to start anew. He wiped the sweat off his brow with a gloved hand, panting lightly. Most of the field was already taken care of, his farming expertise was as strong as ever.
He paused to think about the crops he should try to grow. Dividing the crops evenly would be the best choice, giving him something to sell every few days. It still filled him with unease, making him think about his old field, but he figured it was the best way.
His train of thought was broken as he spied a figure watching him from behind his silo.
"Care to come out?" He asked, turning his attention back to his work.
The figure gave a small jump of surprise, before slowly walking towards him. "Sorry about that." Her voice gave a cute squeak of embarrassment.
Jack turned to look at her, and suddenly he felt a bit more conscious of himself.
Her soft-looking hair came to just above her shoulders, held in place with a yellow hair band. She wore a simple plaid dress, giving her a more simple feeling. Her large amber eyes stared around nervously. Jack guessed that she was probably a few years younger than him, judging by her appearance and manner.
She's very pretty. Thought Jack, as he did his best to seem normal. "I'm Jack." He held out an ungloved hand.
"I'm Lumina." She shook his hand gently, still appearing embarrassed. "I'm from the mansion up the hill." She gestured in the general area. "I just thought I'd stop by, and see the new farmer that everybody was talking about." She admitted.
"Oh right, I was going to stop by there later." Jack smiled. "But why were you hiding?" He asked curiously.
"Well…" Her face flushed in embarrassment. "I was supposed to be practicing piano, but I became a little impatient." She didn't seem to regret her actions very much. "I was just afraid I'd be spotted by somebody else if I wasn't careful."
"I see." Jack chuckled. She seemed to be a nice person, and her childish side made her even more cute. He stooped down for a second to pluck a flower in the way of his work.
"Ooh." Lumina made a noise of awe, moving towards the flower. "You've got a Moondrop Flower there." She smiled at him.
"You can have it." Jack handed it to her gently, noting how her face lit up.
"Thank you! It's my favorite kind of flower." She stared at it lovingly. "You're a very kind person, aren't you?" She asked.
Jacks mood suddenly soured a fair bit. "I'm…not so sure about that." He mumbled.
"Are you okay?" Lumina asked, peering at his face with concern.
"It's nothing. I…just don't think I'm that kind of a person." Jack muttered quickly.
"What makes you say that?" Lumina asked.
"I had a great life back in Mineral Town, but I ruined it. All because I was too selfish. I cared about myself too much, and it hurt those around me." He didn't know why he was spilling his guts to a girl he had just met, but it felt like a weight was being lifted off his shoulders. "And no matter how hard I tried to keep it a secret, it still came back to haunt me."
Lumina stared at him for a second, analyzing every little thing about him.
Jack kept quiet, almost expecting her to turn and leave in disdain.
"What's wrong with being selfish?" She spoke up suddenly. "Everybody's selfish to some degree."
"But…" Jack tried to think of a good argument.
"It's not your fault for being like that, you're only human." A frown worked its way onto her face. "If it hurt people around, that can only be because they were selfish too."
Jack stared at her in surprise. What she said made a lot of sense, even if she didn't fully understand the circumstances.
"I'm selfish too, you know?" She smiled. "I ignored my piano practice because I wanted to come down here and see you, and my Grandma forces it on me because it's what she wants. So don't be so hard on yourself over something like that. You seem like you need to be a little more selfish."
"Ha…" He started with a small chuckle, but soon Jack began to laugh loudly. More selfish? The thought had never even crossed his mind before!
Lumina peered at him with worry. "Are you okay? I'm sorry if I said something I shouldn't have."
"Are you kidding?" Jack clasped her hands tightly. "I haven't felt so relieved in years!" He shouted.
Lumina blushed at the sudden proximity, but felt happiness for the farmer. "I'm glad I could help, Jack." She smiled.
Jack stared at her for a moment, before a sudden call caught his attention.
"Lumina! Lumina, where are you!? You better not be skipping out on your piano lessons again!!" An elderly woman's voice shrieked from nearby.
"Uh-oh. I've got to go Jack." Lumina quickly sprang away from Jack. "Come visit me sometime though, okay? It'd make piano practice a lot more interesting." And with that, she disappeared from sight.
Jack stood there for a moment, trying to understand the huge change he had undergone in such a short time. His self-hatred was finally gone, and so easily too. And all he had to do was be selfish enough to talk to someone about them.
"Maybe it's not so bad after all…" He stared at the blue sky above him. "Alright then, time to decide the crops to plant." He smiled to himself. He thought of how he would divide them evenly, and then stopped.
"I think I'll grow a lot of strawberries." He laughed. Strawberries were one of his favorite fruits. And he hated pumpkins, so he wouldn't bother growing any of those. He enjoyed this line of thinking, growing only what he wanted to.
"A-nd…" He paused for a second, staring at the place where Lumina had disappeared from his sight, "I think I'll grow a lot of Moondrop Flowers."
Hey!!! I managed to get this done on time! Hurray for me!
This is the second story I've written for a contest, and the theme was "Secrets" this time around. It took me a long time to think of a good story for that theme, and then even longer to actually get it moving, but I'm pretty happy with the end result. Although, I don't think I stayed with the theme very well. In case you couldn't tell, his secret was his greed.
I kinda liked the idea of Jack switching towns in this one, although I wonder if it would really be so easy. A whole new town is a whole new start for our farmer after all.
Lumina was one of my favorites for HMDS, and I thought she'd fit into the right role pretty well, so I hope she's not too OOC.
I think I'm getting back into the swing of things with writing, so expect something new from me soon! If you like any of my stuff that is.
Pleas drop in a review if you have the time, it makes me get the warm fuzzies inside.