Streets of Heaven

by WSJ

WSJ: *^^* I love this song a lot. It's probably my new favorite. *sniffles* Even though the song itself is narrated from a mother about her daughter, I couldn't help but fit it to Ryou and Amane. *grin* I know, I know, I torture Ryou waaaay more then is healthy. But I can't help it!! He's so kawaii when he's sad! *grin*

Disclaimer: I don't own YGO, and the song belongs to Sherrie Austin-sama.

Note: Ryou is about nine here, and Amane's just turned seven.

2nd Note: I always use the same names for Ryou's parents: Angeline and Shen. But this has nothing to do with the Tales of the Child of Fate series.


Quote of the Fic:

"Meep! Must... resist... erge... to drool... over Malik... Gah! Joey evil!!"
~(Me, watching the first epi of "Joey's Betrayal" *grimaces at the bad dub-names*)

Angeline Bakura took a shuddering breath and pulled another tissue out of the almost-empty box that was sitting on the small bedside table beside her. The beep of the heart monitor and the hum of several other machines were the only sounds in the hospital room where she sat. Across the room, her husband, Shen, was curled up in a chair and snoring slightly.


Angeline jumped at the quiet sound and turned around to see her nine-year-old son, Ryou, in the doorway. She did a double-take, looking back to where she'd last seen him curled up asleep on Shen's lap. Ryou was wearing a slightly too-big t-shirt and a pair of jeans with muddy stains and ripped knees. And of course that Egyptian Ring that Shen had gotten for him on his last trip to Egypt.

"Ryou, where'd you go? It's not good just to be wandering around the hospital," Angeline said, a little too sharply. Ryou started to tear up and mumbled something about the bathroom. Angeline forced herself to smile and held out her arms. "I'm sorry Ryou. I'm just worried something will happen to you." Like what happened to Amane she didn't add.

Ryou felt wetness in his hair and realised his mother was crying. He hugged her tighter. "Don't cry mommy. Amane-chan will be all right."

"I hope so Ryou..." she whispered, too low for him to hear. Then she stood up, dusting off her skirt. "Well," she said briskly, trying to discuise her tears. "How about I go find us some food. You sit down and try to sleep, okay? It's long past your bedtime."

"Past yours too mama." Ryou said seriously, and Angeline smiled weakly. That child always had been too grown-up for his own good.

"Yes, past mine too. I'll go find something to eat, and then we'll both sleep. Deal?" Ryou nodded, so Angeline left the room, flicking tears out of her eyes as she went.

Ryou stood still in the middle of the room for a moment, waiting for the click-klack of his mother's heeled shoes to fade away before he moved. Then he walked around to kneel next to the hospital bed, laying his elbows up over the covers so his hands covered the small pale one on top of the sheets, careful of the IV that led to her elbow. He then laid his head down on his arm, sniffling slightly as he looked up at his sister's face, paler even then it normally was.

Hello God, it's me again. 2:00 a.m., Room 304.
Visiting hours are over, time for our bedside tug of war.

At first, his words were halting and unsure. It was always his daddy or mommy who'd prayed before, never him. But as he went on, his words gained strength and urgency. After all, this was his sister, his beloved imouto-chan. And as his words gained strength, so did his tears. He choked and swallowed, trying to keep back the sobs long enough to get his words out around them.

"God, it was an accident! I didn't mean to... Please, help Amane-chan to get better. I love her, more then anything! She has to get better, she has to! It wasn't my fault, I tried to tell her, but she wouldn't listen to me..."

He lapsed into silence, save for his quiet sobs, as he remembered back to that afternoon, and the events that had put his beloved little sister in such critical condition.

This sleeping child between us may not make it through the night.
I'm fighting back the tears as she fights for her life.

"Hey Amane, here comes my brother."

Amane looked up from where she was sitting on the top step of the day care and grinned, desplaying the holes where up until last week her two front teeth had resided. "Okay Shizuka. See you tomorrow?"

Jounochi Shizuka nodded and gave her friend a quick hug. "Bye 'Mane."

"Bye 'Zuka."

Amane watched as her red-headed friend ran down the steps of the after school day care, meeting her brother at the bottom. Her brother took her bag to carry along with his own, and Shizuka turned around one last time to wave at Amane before hurrying to catch up to her nii-san.

"Hey Amane,"

"What?" Amane turned around to look at two of her other classmates, Kyoko and Shika. Amane didn't like them very much, they were mean and snooty and didn't listen to the sensei. The two slightly older girls looked at each other, then back at Amane. "What?" she asked again.

"How come your brother always comes to pick you up, and not your mom or dad?" Kyoko asked. "We know Jou-san comes to pick up Shizuka because their parents are divorsed, and besides, his school is right near here. But your brother has to ride the bus all the way from the other side of town to pick you up."

Amane blinked, wondering how Kyoko had found all that out. "My daddy has to work, and mommy doesn't like to drive very far. So Ryou and I walk home, and I'm too little to walk by myself. Why?"

The two exchanged glances again. "Too little? Amane, you turned seven last week, right? Why would your brother still need to hold your hand all the way home like he does?"

"Yeah," Shika added with a haughty flip of her hair. "Shizuka won't be seven until next month, and her brother doesn't hold her hand."

Amane's cheeks burned. "Okay fine, I won't hold his hand today, all right?" Even if she didn't like these girls, Amane wasn't going to let them get away with calling her a baby.

Well, it must be kind of crowded,
On the streets of Heaven.
So tell me: what do you need her for?

"There's your brother now Amane." Shika sneered as Ryou hopped off the bus at the corner, his school bag over one shoulder. He waved to Amane, who couldn't help but smile. Despite Kyoko and Shika's teasing, she was still happy to see her big brother. She waved to the sensei and grabbed her bag, skipping down the stairs to greet her nii-san.

"Don't forget Amane!" Kyoko called after her, and Amane lowered her head so Ryou wouldn't see her embarrassed blush.

"Friends of yours?" Ryou asked as he took her bag, like Jou had taken Shizuka's. "Don't forget what?"

"No, they're just girls from school. It's nothing."

"Oh, okay. Here, hold my hand Amane, the street up here is always busy."

Amane bit her lip, but took his hand, although reluctantly. "Ryou-kun, I'm seven now. Do I have to hold your hand?"

Ryou frowned at her. "You know you do. Mama and daddy said so. Now hold on tight." They were coming up to the intersection now, and several adults had just started to cross.

Don't you know one day she'll be your little girl forever,
But right now I need her so much more?

"But Ryou -"

"But nothing Amane-chan. Hold my hand while we cross the street."

Amane frowned. Kyoko and Shika were right, even if they were snotty prisses. She was too old to have to hold her big brother's hand. After all, Shizuka didn't, and Rebecca even walked home by herself! Granted, she lived just down the block and didn't have to cross any busy streets, but still...

Making an abrupt decision, she yanked her hand out of Ryou's and darted off the sidewalk before he could catch her again, just as the crossing light flipped from a white person to a red hand, and the traffic light itself turned green.


She's much too young to be on her own:
Barely just turned seven.
So who will hold her hand when she crosses the streets of Heaven?

Back in the present Ryou lifted his hands off of Amane's and covered his eyes with them, trying to muffle his sobs, so as not to wake his father. "Why couldn't I just grab her?! If I'd just reached out and grabbed her shirt, her hand, even one of her braids!"

'She's too young to die!' he wailed silently, unknowingly quoting someone famous. His mind flashed back to her last birthday. He'd gotten her a model horse, and she'd delightedly proclaimed that one day she'd have a real horse, of her own. Now she might never get the chance, and it was his fault, he just knew it.

Tell me God, do you remember the wishes that she made,
As she blew out the candles on her last birthday cake?
She wants to ride a pony when she's big enough.
She wants to marry her Daddy when she's all grown up.

"Aw, you poor little kid..."

Ryou gasped and jumped up, whirling around. Standing in the doorway was a man in jeans and a t-shirt, his long hair pulled back into a loose pony-tail. He looked tired, with big bags under his eyes. He came forward and kneeled down next to Ryou, nodding toward where Amane lay in the bed. "That your sister?"

Ryou nodded tearfully, and the man smiled gently. "Poor guy. My wife's in the hospital too. The doctors don't think she'll live, but we can't give up hope, right?"

Ryou nodded again, and all at once he threw his arms around the man's neck and began to cry again. The man stiffened for a moment, surprised, and then he wrapped his arms around little Ryou and hugged him, trying to keep back tears of his own.

"It's all my fault, I know it is!" Ryou sobbed, burrying his face in the man's soft silver hair. "It's my fault!"

"Shh, shh, no it's not," the man soothed, rubbing Ryou's back with a gentle hand. "Things happen. It wasn't your fault..."

"But it was! I should have made Amane hold my hand. I shouldn't have let her get away from me!"

The man pulled away slightly and wiped a few tears out of Ryou's eyes with his thumb. "Listen here. It isn't your fault. It was fated to happen. You couldn't have done anything to stop it. You hear me?"

Ryou hiccuped and nodded, and the man smiled. "Just a minute, I want to show you something." he dug around in his pocket for a moment, before coming up with a slightly rumpled peice of paper folded into eighths. He unfolded it and showed it to Ryou. It was an angel, but one wing was a dragon's wing. "Here, for you. To remember that all days have a good side and a bad side, and the bad side isn't our fault."

Well, it must be kind of crowded,
On the streets of Heaven.
So tell me: what do you need her for?
Don't you know one day she'll be your little girl forever,
But right now I need her so much more?
She's much too young to be on her own:
Barely just turned seven.
So who will hold her hand when she crosses the streets of Heaven?

The man looked down at Ryou's ring and raised an eyebrow. "What's this?" he asked, turning the cold metal over in his hands.

Ryou sniffled, folding the picture back up and putting it in his pocket. "Daddy got it for me in Egypt. He says it's a 'Nenen Item."


There was a quiet footstep in the hallway as Angeline came back with the food, and the man smiled at Ryou again. "Keep your chin up, okay? Never give up hope."

"You neither." Ryou said seriously, and the man chuckled saddly before leaving the room.

Lord, don't you know she's my angel
You got plenty of your own.
And I know you hold a place for her
But she's already got a home.

Angeline came back in the room, setting a tray with food down on the bedside table. "Who was that Ryou?"

Ryou shrugged one shoulder, already stuffing French fries into his mouth. "He said his wife's in the ho'pital too. He gave me a picture."

"That's nice Ryou." Angeline said absently, ruffling his hair. "I hope his wife will be all right."

"Me too." But Ryou said it with considerable more sincerity then his mother.

After he finished eating, he slid off the chair and walked over to the window, climbing up onto the wide sill. It was cold outside, and the glass had fogged over. Pulling his sleeve down over his hand, Ryou rubbed away a patch so he could see the stars.

"Star light, star bright, first star I see tonight. I wish I may, I wish I might, have this wish I wish tonight..."

"What did you wish for Ryou?" his father asked, having woken up without Ryou's noticing.

Ryou grinned at his father, his brown eyes dancing. "That's a secret. If I told, it wouldn't come true."

Never lose hope...

Well I don't know if you're listenin'
But praying is all that's left to do.
So I ask you Lord have mercy, you lost a Son once too...

Ryou stayed by the window, watching the stars until he began to yawn. Chuckling, Angeline and Shen exchanged glances. Shen picked up his son and laid him down in the chair where up until an hour ago, Shen himself had been asleep. Ryou yawned once more and then rolled over, curling up into a ball.

Angeline and Shen sat up talking, until they too drifted asleep. Time passed, and at about five a.m. the man that had given Ryou the picture happened to walk by their door. His face was haggard and he looked older then he had even a few hours before. He smiled slightly to see the heart monitor on Amane was still beeping, he'd been half afraid that when his own hope left him, little Ryou's would vanish too.

He stood at the door and watched Ryou for a long, long time.

And it must be kind of crowded,
On the streets of Heaven.
So tell me: what do you need her for?
Don't you know one day she'll be your little girl forever,
But right now I need her so much more?

Ryou woke up, and for a moment didn't know where he was. Then he remembered, the hospital. He tried to roll over, but instead slid out of the chair to land on his back with a quiet 'oof!' Someone chuckled, and Ryou sat up to see the man from earlier standing in the door.

"You okay?"

"I'm fine." Ryou said, standing up and dusting himself off. He walked over to the man and looked up at him. "Are you leaving?"

He nodded tiredly. "Hai. I don't have any reason to stay anymore."

Contrary to what he'd thought, Ryou understood. "Ohh... I'm real sorry."

"I bet you are. Don't lose your hope, okay?"

Ryou nodded, but his heart was already dropping. Hope in what? The wish he'd made last night hadn't come true.

The man pushed himself off the wall and ruffled Ryou's hair. "See ya' around kid."

"Bye..." With a heavy heart Ryou turned back toward Amane and the sleeping forms of his parents. Somehow, he knew what would happen now. Never lose hope... What was there to hope for?

Lord, I know once you've made up your mind,
There's no use in beggin'.
So if you take her with you today, will you make sure she looks both ways,
And would you hold her hand when she crosses the streets of Heaven?

Waking over to the window, Ryou climbed back up onto the sill just as the sun began to rise. "Take care of her, okay?" he whispered upward. "Make sure someone always holds her hand."

//Why? It didn't do any good when you held her hand.//

Ryou jumped at the voice and fell off the windowsill. "Who said that? Who's there?!"

//Just me, little Ryou.//

"How do you know my name?"

//I am you. When you look in the mirror, it's me who looks back. I am your other side.//

Ryou reached into his pocket and pulled out the man's picture. "Like this angel?"

//Yes, very much like that. Now tell me something little one, it's your fault Amane's like this, isn't it?//

"No! It isn't! It isn't."

//But it is. You had it right the first time. You should have had a better grip on her hand.//

"I should've..."

//It's all your fault.//

The streets of Heaven...

"It's all my fault..."


WSJ: O_o;; Weeeeird...

Pegasus: *twitch twitch*

God bless minna-san!