Walk On By: Chapter 2 – The Convergence.

By: Solitary Dragon

My coffee swirled around in that off-coloured chipped cup; but I sat thinking of what I'd really done to her and to myself. I was being selfish but I couldn't handle it, I couldn't deal with the pressure, the constant squabbling as we tried so very hard to readjust to our new lives. Once the war was over, I lost my purpose, my reason for being. A drifter like me had nothing to do, nowhere to go and nothing to offer her. I wanted better for her and more than that, I didn't want her to be with this hollowed out form of a man I am.

Three years ago the End of War celebrations filled the streets with laughter and the ringing of bells and what little we could salvage to celebrate the end of devastation. Most of our crew made it out in one piece; Yuri lost an eye but humankind having gone through that mad-man's nightmare came out intact. Now we understood what it meant to seek and keep the peace. They, those creatures were the first to talk, to make arrangement to settle our collective grievances and start the long process of rebuilding this big blue planet. This blue planet which we shared with them and in which I no longer had a place…I didn't want her to see me like this. I'll admit it, to ease my pain I did all sorts of things I'm not proud of. Whenever her back was turned I found solace in dark street corners, I found love in the arms of other women – I couldn't be the war hero, the devoted husband and future father she wanted me to be. I was a two bit abuser, a drunk and a vagabond all at once and I didn't want her to have to suffer in silence while I self-destructed; I don't want that for her. I wanted Kino to feel love and to wake up wrapped in someone else's arms because mine were not good enough. Mine were too nerve racked, mine were made for destruction, and my arms weren't made to love…my arms were made to kill.

So I let her go, I did it so she could forget about me and the promises I broke and the promises I knew I'd never keep. I loved her, I always will but I'm a shell of a man with nothing to offer.

I watched her from a distance; I watched her fall apart when I disappeared that winter night. I had gone out to get something…I never came back to our place. She was painting something green…Something with lots of trees. It was her hobby and a way of reconnecting with happier times and her childhood in the mountains. She painted landscapes mostly but once I posed for her – I watched Kino as she set it on fire after she realised I wasn't coming back. I laughed to myself, she burnt me alive in her hearth; I never knew a woman could cry such angry bitter tears.

I would like to think we were happy at least once during that accursed year together, I had tried for her sake but I knew I was no good for her.

I spent two years wandering, sailing and drifting from place to place, lost in a sea of face. And then I saw her again in that diner and I wanted to retreat but like a moth I was drawn in. In that moment I wanted her all over again but I knew it was just wishful thinking. I wasn't ready and neither was she – emotions ran high in that meeting and it seemed like it had all happened yesterday, my leaving her. I staggered out into the street after touching her and the overpowering need to kiss her claimed me. I longed for a drunken stupor – I longed to forget her. The new Kino was different in ways I couldn't recall yet she was the same. The same hair although longer, the same skin and the same sweet lips.

"Watch WERE you're GOING! I'm WALKING HERE!" It jolted me out of my reverie, somehow my legs had carried me right back to her and she was staring at me. Had I simply just circled the place…or did she follow me?

"I want…you." I don't know who said it, it could have been me…it could have been her.

To be Continued

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Thanks AtiKuroTomo! I left this story unfinished for 6 years! I'm going to update it and continue until I'm FINISHED! Thanks to everybody for Reading~ Especially AtiKuroTomo!