Hmmm…This is a random idea of mine. We'll see where it goes. Companion to No One Cared. Suggested Shuro/Mine.

There is a light breeze blowing through the city streets. Shuro sits on a bench, not far from the university, and watches as people rush by, caught up in the mundane complexities of their everyday lives. He sighs as a little boy runs by, mischief on his mind, and his mother chases after him. Many of his fellow students also pass but he wills them away, wanting only to be alone. The breeze ruffles his hair and he runs a hand through it, trying to clear his mind. His talent for reading minds makes this a nearly impossible task, but he feels the need to unwind. It's a new urge for him. He's always been fine, perfectly comfortable with his own existence and what it entails, but more and more he's finding that he can't relax. Ever since Sakaki showed up and Mine was dragged into the Izaku business, he's been…stressed. Stress. Shuro has looked into the minds of countless human beings under too much pressure but the word "stress" was never one he would use to describe himself, until now. And Mine…he's not sure what it is that he feels when he thinks about her, but all it does is increase the weight that he feels settling over his shoulders.

Shuro closes his eyes, listening now, not to thoughts but to the buzz of voices that drifts through the street. He wonders for what seems like the millionth time, what would it be like if I were one of them? A human being? He realizes that he wouldn't exist if the scientists had not created him and so the question is obsolete, but that doesn't stop him. He knows that no matter how many minds he reads and rearranges, no matter how many aliases he assumes, he will never truly know what life feels like without knowing the thoughts of almost everyone around you.

"Mama! Mama! Lookit wha' I found!" shouts a little boy across the street, proudly showing his mother a bottle cap he has discovered on the sidewalk.

Shuro has no reaction to this outburst, although many people on the street smile quietly. The only thing such outbursts do for him is draw many memories of his own twisted "childhood" to the surface, struggling to dredge them up from the bottom of the slews of other people's memories that he has covered them with. He knows that Izaku had it worse than he did, but although he tries not to wallow in self-pity, he dislikes reminders of such experiences. They only make him feel more alone.

Beneath it all, he realizes that he is lonely. He doesn't know exactly why. Perhaps it is because the one other being that technically belongs to his species is the being that he is intent upon destroying. He has never much considered befriending humans to fill this particular void. They are too easy to manipulate, and he can also see straight through them. People like Sakaki and Mine help a little. They have a certain air of mystery that is lost in others, simply because they are the only people that he cannot understand and control at will. But he still feels alone. It's something he will never admit, because it's a tiny chink in the façade of normalcy he surrounds himself with. No one needs to know, he tells himself, it's not important. Because, at the end of the day, he knows that even if they manage to find the chink and crack his armor, he will easily be able to slip away, using his talents to hide and build another life of lies.

Bleah…I'm tired even though it's noon…Please Review!