There are covert glances and tacit goodbyes. Wavering eye contact and broken motions. Like hands calling him back, with a sweet song of air pressure and singing blood.



Might've helped if they'd been said.

Maybe not.

But that is back when somebody was still too in love to get the bigger picture.

In love with a something and not a somebody. Couldn't really decide which one was unhealthier. Which one denoted the faulty wiring and which one put a check mark next to damage.

Maybe both, maybe he is being stupid and dense.

Maybe he should have said something, the right something instead of just mouthing the things he knows will get him ahead.

It might be the right thing to try.

Maybe he needs to cut the tethers and actually take the jump.

The jump, forgetting about the gravity of the situation, the literal life and death of the whole fucking thing.

Maybe he should say it now, even though no one is around to hear, not even nobody.

He laughs hot and wild. Opens his eyes and let the clouds come rushing in, a world he has no business being in except…

Sunlight, sunlight on his skin is kind of like breathing again.

Sometimes Demyx thinks he's a fucking freak, sometimes Demyx gives him this tight little sneer, when no one is watching and he thinks he can get away with it and all Axel can do is laugh.

He dredges up the waters of the past, talks about things he didn't experience, but remembers from his own past, which he knows to be the future.

Demyx blanches at him, pulls away and that's the end and that's all and Axel feels like he's standing at the edge of that proverbial cliff, the one with the leap of faith, the one where he flies, but he knows Gods and Gravity don't apply to people like him, so he wonders, for a brief suicidal second which one it is that'll really kill him.

The sea roils and foams and then he jumps.

His blood screams.

His heart clenches, that useless organ in the long run.

And his vocal chords stretch to accommodate just what it is that he has to say.

It takes the sky and the sea combined to hold it all, cause he just lets it pour forth like a wave.

When he's supposed to die, when his wings aren't going to appear and save him, the instinct thrums and all he's got is black and dark, sinking through a door thrown wide open. Water rushing in after him, and he holds that desperate desire of drowning and is terrified to think that he won't.

No one is around to catch him when his feet touch the ground.

Another wide gut wrenching laugh.

Yes, yes, he's panting like he was about to lose his life and he loves it that he cares and he screams to the goddamned rooftops of this faceless city where no one lives any more.

The words won't come and are still useless in the first place.

But he screams anyway, until his throat cracks into pretty porcelain pieces.

It's over.

He stares up at the dark sky and the windy city, the shapeless nothing that writhes and whorls all around. Gorgeous, beautiful. He loves it. He loves it like he can't love anything else.

He wishes he could let fly one more scream on the air.

The sob twists itself from his mouth and he's gone again.

The only remnant of Axel is a few teardrops lost amongst the rain.

Sometimes Twilight Town is pretty, sprays of pink and orange hot off the sun. Other times it looks like blood, like someone's gutted a pig across the town.

Roxas doesn't know which one he likes better, doesn't know which one comforts him more. Sometimes he suspects he stares at the sun in order to go blind.

Hayner punches his shoulder cause he doesn't like when he talks like that.

Olette must be the closest to understanding because she gives this weak, nigh on hysterical, little chirrup of laughter.

Roxas cackles like he's got spiders tickling his intestines.

And when he opens his eyes, the clouds come tumbling in and he is. He is blind for that instant, that second and it's worth it all, the uncertainty the nightmares and the awkward disassociation to himself.

He stands up straight and extends his arms like he's got wings to fly.

Wobbles and prays he'll fall.

Prays he'll hear his heart screaming.

Someone drags him back, so he screams aloud instead, lets his voice rip apart the whole city, leaving an irreparable fissure in the air.

He screams until his Adam's apple splits at the core and those around him have already vowed to never mention this incident again.

He dreams of that door, the door that'll lead to his death on the ground, the cold concrete where blood and water will seep to sewers where they'll be forgotten forever.

And when the blood appears, spilling from someone's cracked skull, he knows it for what it is. Knows himself for what he is and smiles like he'll finally be able to sever his wings in the most beautifully painful way possible.

Maybe words are what other people would use.

They'd rather scream out to the clouds.

They'd rather swim through standing water, dirty and stale.

Drink it in and feel it work its way through the sluggish veins.

His heart is screaming in his chest and caterpillar green eyes keep crawling through his veins.

It's…like covert glances and tacit hellos that are standing in as understudies for those absent goodbyes. Heavy eye contact that won't let go. Stumbling into everyone else around. Ignorant of shouts and curses. Hungry hands crawling all over other bodies, oblivious to the open stares of the Identities. They don't understand this faceless need, they don't understand why a strange air pressure pushes them away.

And the door opens up, and they go falling through, high above the sea.

And when they should go crashing to those beautiful waves, the darkness comes again.

Promises made of nothing more than Nobody's word dance and paint their fading sky like stars.

This is how it should be, someone should be laughing, but they're still too dense for words.

This is how we can be, someone should be crying, but the ocean disguises the tears.

And sinking, with tennis shoes and tall boots far from the rest of the ground, they know they've landed.

Landed where names and faces and pasts and presents don't matter but for the feeling of suffocation.

Metaphors are pretty in that way, Axel thinks as he kisses the pretty boy who tried to get away.

Standard Disclaimers & Ben Fold's 'Landed'