Author's Note: So, this sorta came to me one night, just after writing some FFVII fanfic. I've discovered that quiet characters fascinate me...thus this perspective. Hope you like the addition to the ComiPa world MJP!
I happen to like silence.
The world is so busy now, with its cafés filled with chattering people, bursting into endless conversations. So many words filling the air, so tangible, like bubbles filling to the ceiling. People swimming through this as they brave to leave for the city streets, unaware they are in an ocean of empty phrasings.
The silent ones are watchers, a fact that many often acknowledge. What they often forget is that they are listeners too.
I see the woman, her hair coiffed in that special way, idly fingering the rim of her tea. She mutters English poetry when she thinks no one is listening, hiding her affinity with a few well chosen haikus. She never brings a notebook or any book either, only her voice, which constantly reminds her that with each day she looses some of the sound.
The silent ones don't always watch the strangers. When occasion warrants, we have company.
"So, are you prepared for the next ComiPa?" he asks me, the usual tyrannical gleam in his eye. I nod, the usual involuntary response.
So I was now under the careful watch of one, Kazuki, and two, Taishi; both conspiring to help me sell dojinshi: my art, my calling.
My tea is growing cold, I can feel it through my fingers, as they absently tap the sides. I once heard that when a person is deaf, or blind, the other four senses are heightened, as if making up for the loss of the fifth companion.
That's often how it feels, when that talkative one, Yuu, is not around. She bounces off these two, providing me plenty of time to watch and listen. The proper part of me was never very comfortable with only men anyway; the feudel blood flowing through my veins reminds me.
"Why are you so quiet, Aya?" Kazuki asks me, his occasionally observant eyes noticing my lack of movement, drinking...anything other than being a fly on the wall. I grin, knowing that the smile will only show part of the way.
"Yes, Comrade, are you feeling ill?" Taishi bursts in, his way of feeling included. I give him a nod, a signal he's picked up on lately, meaning something that only his mind could invent.
"I'm just...thinking. Thinking about silence," I say, my voice always quieter than my mind. They stare for a minute at a point behind me, and then exchange a token glance. I know they are up to something.
"Could you care to, um...elaborate?" Taishi questions me, his round glasses giving off a flicker of light as he leans in on the table. Kasuki also leans in, his movements and Taishi's have taken on a sychronized regularity. My inner voice giggles.
"It's so busy, this city," I begin, allowing my vocal chords the chance to warm up, "No one ever stops, they all move so quickly. I wonder if they ever feel lost." Taishi blinks, almost inperceptable behind his lenses; the flash of light always gives it away.
"Could...you draw that?" Kazuki asks me, handing me a partly sharpened pencil and a napkin. Not the best supplies, but I've always made do.
"Comrade, what is the meaning..." Taishi begins, starting to raise his voice to a crazed orator type of tone. Kazuki surprisingly hushes him, a hand raised coupled with a knowing look.
The thought strikes me, and I begin my hasty strokes, the only thing I am ever truly bold at. I take it all out on the paper, or in this case, napkin, and sketch wildly. Taishi gapes for a moment at my aggressive streak, and I can't help but feel a little embarassed.
There are the bubbles, filled with words...the strokes of Japanese haphazardedly skewed in the crowd of faceless people. A word of English, one of many I know, written small near the woman, her face obscured, but her hair still stylish as ever.
'Silence' it says, in the odd way English letters curl.
I gingerly hand it over to them, as rough as it is, and watch as the shared expression reaches their faces. Soon, Taishi is standing, one foot propped on the seat, one hand raised, his boisterous personality overtaking him again.
"Comrades! Are you prepared to go to new depths in dojinshi?" he bellows, that Otaku in him gasping for fresh air, "We are meant to inspire as well as entertain! Do you know what it is you must do?!" Kazuki and I both shake our heads, lost in the rhetoric that is Taishi's outward self. He loses his tempo for a moment.
"Comrades, think about it: three different dojinshi, three different artistic talents..." he continues, bouncing back into his vocal stride, "...one theme!" He is grinned madly now, and I almost feel like picking up the pencil again and drawing him...maybe with that English word, 'Energy' nearby...
"And who would be the third..." I ask, still lost in the moment of excitement. His eyes focus on a point of in the distance, and soon he is bounding off towards the entrance, where undoubtedly his unsuspecting victim awaits.
"He sure gets pretty excited," Kazuki says, more to himself than to me. Still, I should politely acknowledge the conversation.
"Yes," I reply, satisfied in my contribution. He grins, as Taishi drags his victim over, ignoring the look of seering aggression on her face.
"Why, Comrade Yuu, of course!" he says, still living in his delusions of grandeur. It's admirable, really, to be able to live with such...energy. She, with her arm finally free, uses it for the purpose of mayhem, as the harisen comes whistling through the air and onto Taishi's head.
"I don't know what hairbrained scheme you've got this time..." she quips, her bespectacled eyes narrowed at our Otaku, "But I would like to be asked before I am told!" I cannot help the grin. Yuu is more than a match for Taishi with wits and gumption, and their exchanges are the most simply complex of anyone I know.
"Fine then Comrade," he says, rubbing a spot on his head, "Would you like to be a part of dojinshi history? To convey messages beyond the normal? To experience..." He pauses dramatically, waiting for everyone to train their eyes on him. Once everyone does, he continues, "...SILENCE!?" He finishes off with a finger placed strategically on his glasses.
"Silence?" Yuu asks, giving the rest of us a quick glance, "Kazuki? Do translate."
"It's a theme that Aya came up with," he says, giving a quick nod to me, "For each of our clubs to do. A way of interpreting something from different perspectives." I scoot over in my seat, noticing my rudeness in not inviting her to sit down from before. She gives me a quick grin before taking a seat.
The rest of the conversation falls to the back of my mind, as I look out the window. The coldness of the air nips at the panes, leaving behind a few ice sketchings.
The street looks silent, as the crowd breaks for a moment.