Author's Note: did you see this one coming? maybe some of you guys, considering that i've been asking random questions about death recently. (i'm not suicidal, mkay? XO) for you new readers, what's up? here, i go by "kokoro77". on other places, i go by "kagome1nonly", "koibito813", "pooky", "wife" and "that one girl with insanely long hair that belongs in a shampoo commercial". call me what you want, just not something totally offensive unless you mean it as a joke. ;3
i came up with the idea for this story some MONTHS ago when school was just starting, but i never got around to starting it. i was afraid that i didn't have enough of a plot to work with. well, i eventually threw myself on the comp and did it. i deserve snaps, ey? you know you love me. XD
disclaimer: do not own, never will i own. comprendes? now, i hope you enjoy YET ANOTHER akuroku tale by moi. w00t w00t
wheewhoowheewhoo: there will be attempted suicide, sailor talk, yaoi, sex, boyish attitude and angsty love that will tug at your heartstrings so hard your heart might be ripped out. that's akuroku for ya. X3
Afraid of Heights
"I, I'm thinking there's a sign that the freckles in our eyes are mirror images and when we kiss they're perfectly aligned...
They will see us waving from such great heights. "Come down now," they'll say.
But everything looks perfect from far away "Come down now"
But we'll stay..."
-Such Great Heights by The Postal Service
7. It was always his lucky number.
Then again, hasn't it always been lucky for everyone? But he happened to be exceptionally lucky with the number. He was born at 7 AM on the 7th of the 7th month. His parents wouldn't stop acting giddy over the fact that he, indeed, could have been an angel brought to earth. And as he grew, that angel-like luck carried along with him.
At 7 months he was already learning how to crawl and stand on his own without the aid of his mother or father's hand. People called him somewhat of a child prodigy.
At 7 years he earned his first BMX bike for his birthday; the one that had been virtually sold out in every toy store known to mankind. He learned how to ride it within a week of determined practice.
At 17 he left high school with the great aspiration of entering the medical field, and his grades proved that he had the ability to do so. Life seemed to be sugar coated with luck for him. He made sure to step over every crack and swerve around every ladder; turn from every black cat and catch every falling mirror.
7 years of bad luck? No such thing, right? 7 years of bad luck was the one 7 "thing" that he didn't think he could apply to.
And with every accomplishment in his life, he held onto that statement as being the ultimate truth. Nothing would hurt him, not even a rain cloud could bring him down...
Born perfect, live perfectly.
Life seemed to play out nicely as a fairy tale would. The only problem was: how to end it. After all, beneath all that sugar coated goodness was one bitter tasting pill that ultimately failed what it was prescribed to him for: a lifetime of happiness. There really was no reason to stand anymore.
It'd only been a passing thought. Just barely lasted a measly second. Now, how was it that this tiny thought would manage to seep deeper into his subconscious and completely begin to alter his thought processes?
What did it matter? He'd just go about doing "it" anyway.
He just had to find the perfect place for his life to end. He'd have to make sure he'd time it correctly. Make sure that no one would be there; that no one would hear him. Then he wouldn't be found. Pure logic.
...The only problem was: how would he hope to do this, if he was so afraid of heights?
It was a tall building. Not insanely tall...but just tall enough. In fact, it was its height that caught the blonde's attention in the split second he'd seen it while riding the train only last week. It was only a brown blur of an abandoned building, sitting comfortably yet dejectedly in the distance, nestled in between a couple of shops that he'd never been to.
But still, despite how dull it looked in comparison, Roxas took that building into consideration. It wasn't just a blur to him. For him, the building, in a sense, represented himself. Yep. Abandoned and a sore thumb in the crowd.
Roxas had passed the building almost everyday, by foot or by train. He'd always managed to snag a good view of it: its cracked windows and chipped brick walls. And every time he would see it, he'd smile. Why? Looking at it didn't make him happy. Just sort of...accomplished.
"That's the one," he muttered to himself, a smile playing on his bright, peach face. You'd think that he'd be a loony for even noticing something so useless. And with that, he shoved a hand into his pockets and strolled off down the street, hoping that his footsteps would go unnoticed.
So for the remainder of the week, Roxas got up, left the house, went to work at the sweets shop for the next seven hours, constantly repeated "Here you go" "I'm sorry" and "Thank you, come again", left, and at sunset passed by that very building just around the corner. All week. Every day.
Friday. 6 PM. Cold. Freezing cold. Lights off. Windows shut. Roads clear. People gone.
Strange for a Friday night...but for Roxas, oh, it was beyond perfect. He'd have to dress for the occasion...then again, maybe not. It wouldn't make sense to ruin expensive clothes.
He started going over his plans for the night as he started wiping off the countertop at work, humming a tune that he'd made up on the spot. Just when he'd started punching in the code to open the register, he heard the curtains ruffle behind him and he turned to see his co-worker and best friend Hayner come in.
"What, you closing already?" Hayner asked, wiping his forehead with the back of his hand. Roxas shrugged and returned to opening the register.
"I've got plans for tonight."
Behind him, Hayner ripped off his white apron and tossed it against the glass case where all the cookies and whatnot were being displayed. He then pulled up a couple of cardboard boxes, propped them on top of each other and sat down on them lazily.
"Plans, huh? Got a date?"
Roxas shook his head as the register bell chimed and it popped open the drawer. "Nah. Not as exciting as that."
Hayner looked away from the ceiling and raised one eyebrow to Roxas' back. He stopped fanning himself with the newest issue of Playboy magazine and used the corner of it to tap his chin in thought.
"You're...gonna look for a date?" At that, Roxas sighed heavily and, after pulling out 50 bucks from the drawer, slammed it shut, shoved the bills in his pocket and jumped up and over the counter onto the sun baked, cobblestone street. Hayner eyed him curiously.
"Hey, what's the rush? Thought you said this little plan wasn't exciting." As he said the last word, Hayner waved his hands in front of him in sarcasm. "Come on. Pull up a box and chill out back here. I've got magazines..." he teased, shaking the issue in the air.
Somehow, Roxas knew he wouldn't enjoy reading garbage. But, he politely turned around, saluted off to Hayner and began walking backwards away from the shop. "You know," he started. "When you applied for this job, didn't you know for a fact that it was gonna be boring?"
"Pft, yeah," Hayner muttered without a second thought.
"And even though you felt that way, you were still really anxious to get it?"
"So, that's my deal. I'm not super pumped for this thing, but I'm still kinda excited about it. It's gonna be life changing, man."
Hayner sighed, flipped open to the first page and dangled it vertically to ogle at a drop down picture on the page. With a bored face, he waved a limp hand at Roxas and said, "Yeah, yeah. You go change your life and tell me how it went, alright?"
Roxas shook his head, rolled his eyes and turned back around to walk out of the town square. He'd only taken a couple of steps when he remembered he still had his apron on. With a quick tug, he yanked it off and bundled it into a tight ball, tossing it directly into the shop and over Hayner's head.
"By the way, tell the boss 'I quit' for me!"
"Yeah, ye—what?! Roxas! What do you mean quit?! Hey!"
But by then, Roxas was nothing but a flash of yellow, laughing lightly, in the distance.
You would've thought he was happy.
Friday. 8 PM. Below freezing temperature. Street lights on. Alleys and roads: dark and empty.
No voices. No movement. One guy. Up on a rooftop.
Overlooking the nightlife of Twilight Town.
Tapping his foot nonchalantly on the edge. His breath coming out in thin puffs like cigarette smoke. His fingers frozen at his sides.
A long sleeved, white t-shirt. Baggy jeans. Converse sneakers. He liked those sneakers.
Sea blue eyes. Spiked, golden blonde hair.
Mind never wishing that he was part of that nightlife.
So the saying goes: "It's quiet...too quiet."
It was like being the last man on Earth. And that was too good to be true. Roxas might've decided to turn back around knowing that life was suddenly starting to side with him again; letting positivity come back into his schedule. But, no. No, it had to be done.
The funny thing was, he'd been standing on the edge for at least a painful half hour, doing nothing but staring out at the short buildings that appeared so black in the darkness. His feet still tapped impatiently on the concrete roof and he began wondering when they'd stop for good.
With a sigh, he twitched his fingers at his sides and lowered his head until his eyes fell upon the flickering street lights some 7 stories below. "Better do it now, Roxas," he whispered to himself. "Hopefully it won't hurt." He nearly laughed at how maniac he sounded.
And so he began to move his weight on his toes. He felt gravity pulling and pulling and pulling on his arms almost like it was couldn't wait any longer. Alright, alright, he thought. I'm coming. He figured that nothing in the world had patience. This was it. Just a bit more and he'd push off.
Don't say anything. Just count in your head.
"Damn it! Damn it to hell...!"
Roxas' heart suddenly fluttered in his still chest. He'd lost concentration because of that random yell. When his eyes had forced open, he abruptly backed away from the edge once he realized just what in the hell he'd been doing. His breathing quickened and his palms began sweating as he shoved them into his pockets.
"What was I doing?" he asked to no one in particular. If anyone had seen his eyes, they would've assumed that he'd been just a kid separated from his mom. Lost and confused. Roxas shivered as a sharp wind nipped at his ears and neck. "What was I doing?" he repeated.
"Oh, come on...come on, come on. You can do this."
Hearing that voice, Roxas came to the dumb realization that he wasn't alone. Someone was nearby. And for some reason, he had the urge to find out whom. He was sure that he was alone. He was positive about that as soon as he slipped into the abandoned building and climbed the rickety stairs to the roof.
Now he was beyond curious. Listening to his first thought, he turned on his heel, luckily avoided losing his balance on the corner ledge, and faced a building opposite where he was standing. He squinted at the rooftop and had to walk closer to make sure that his head wasn't playing games with him.
But, sure enough, there was someone there. Someone on that roof. And what exactly were they doing? It took him a minute, but Roxas soon noticed that whoever they were, they were running back and forth toward the building's ledge and constantly skidding to a stop whenever they barely made it.
He felt like calling out to them, but held his tongue and continued watching as they ran, stopped centimeters from the ledge, backed up and scratched their head in thought.
"I just don't get it...It's the same every time."
Normally, Roxas would've run away and would've come back to the building another night. He definitely wouldn't take second thoughts in ignoring the person on the roof...but this time, he felt worried.
"Idiot...what're you doing up there?" he hissed to his Converse as he dashed toward the stairs and began his annoying journey of spiraling down safely to the ground. Damn this guy for ruining his night.
He tried again. "Hello...?"
Nothing close to an answer.
The blonde nervously chewed his lower lip as he watched the strange guy from a safe distance in the middle of the roof. He had to take a couple steps to the right to avoid being trampled as the guy ran toward him before taking off toward the edge like he was a plane ready to take off.
It'd make sense if the guy would manage to float aimlessly in the air. His waist was thinner than a stick which obviously meant he didn't weigh more than a penny. Anorexic? Maybe. Roxas' eyes trailed from the stranger's long legs to the mess of fiery red hair which was styled in at least a thousand spikes. He couldn't get a great look at his face since he sped off so quickly.
Still, he persisted to standby and wait for a chance with arms crossed and back pressed against the door that opened to the stairway.
"Alright," Skinny guy muttered to himself. Roxas looked up and stared at his back as he rolled his shoulders and shook his feet like some great athlete. "This time I'll go for it..."
Roxas pushed away from the door and hesitantly stretched his hand out to him. "W-wait," he said pretty unconfidently. He was pretty sure that Skinny wasn't paying him much attention. "What exactly—"
"Going for it!" And without warning, he backed up a couple of steps and ran at full speed toward the edge again, this time Roxas had the worst feeling that he was really going to jump. Suddenly, his heartbeat quickened and his muscles tensed in panic.
"What exactly are you doing?!" he screamed after the guy. The second he finished asking, the redhead's feet barely tapped the brick ledge when he stopped and, with a disappointed sigh, lowered his foot and for the umpteenth time swore to himself.
"What the fuck is wrong with me?"
Roxas cringed on that word but tried to ignore it. He'd talk with this guy whether he liked it or not. Why care so much? He wasn't sure.
But how often do you see two suicides trying to happen at the same time? At least...at least Roxas assumed this guy was trying to kill himself.
"Hey..." he muttered.
"It's a simple jump! A fall, that's it! Ugh, pathetic." The redhead shook his head disappointedly.
"When you did this last week, you had a foot over the edge already. So what I don't get is—"
Roxas found himself clenching his fists tightly together. His feet were apart as he glared straight at the guy's back: really the only part of him that he'd seen. The redhead instantly froze on the spot; his hands lowered at his sides and his head facing forward at the endless city.
Roxas forced himself to swallow before continuing. His throat hurt for some reason. "I...I just wanna know what you're doing."
The only response Roxas got was a light head nod and the movement of the guy breathing. He sighed heavily. Really, he hated being ignored. "I just saw you and wondered...wondered what was up. Not everyday that you see some guy trying to jump." Technically it didn't make sense to say that, considering that he'd been there to jump as well. The scary thing was that the redhead seemed to know that. Roxas couldn't see it, but he was smirking quite know-it-all-ish.
"Is it really your business?"
Roxas nibbled his lower lip sheepishly. "S-sorry," he stuttered as he turned back toward the exit door a bit. "Shouldn't've asked, I guess." That was when he realized that it really wasn't his business to be there. His own business was across the street. No matter what he tried, he couldn't budge; his knees buckled and forced him to remain there to watch the crazy redhead's performance.
The taller guy turned back around and rubbed his hands together. "If you must know, this is called jumping. And this part in town just happens to be the best place to do so. Don't you ever listen to the news? Guess not. At any rate, there's not much I can talk to you about anymore, now is there?" But he paused just as he was about to break into a run, tapped a finger nonchalantly on his pointed chin and slowly glanced over his right shoulder. "Or...is there?"
Roxas gulped. "N-no. You go right ahead."
"Ah, I see. You know, if you were any old person you'd be off running to the police to tell them about some druggy that's about to throw himself onto the pavement from some, what, seven stories up? But lookie here. You're stayin' put, now aren't you? What's your story, kid?" He'd said that all so quickly and confidently that Roxas was having a very hard time believing that he was suicidal. But mom always said to never judge a book by his cover.
"Me?" he scoffed. "No story."
Tall guy shook his head. "Nah. Everyone's got one. Life may be a hellhole but regardless of what it throws and no matter how many times it'll do it people still have some teeny story they refuse to give up." He turned back and crossed his toned arms over his slim body and rolled his neck. "But why would I talk to you about it? You are obviously not interested in life, am I right?"
Roxas scoffed one last time and before he forcefully pushed away from the brick wall he mumbled, "You don't know anything." But a sudden answer from the guy behind him once more stopped him from reaching the door.
Time froze for a while, leaving Roxas to stare at his breath coming out in puffs in front of his face. For all he knew, the guy could have already jumped. He could've jumped if he wasn't so curious, so concerned. He blinked and slowly his head began to rise at the sound of sirens wailing in the distance. They could've been coming for him, had he jumped. He suddenly grew frightened at the thought.
"Well, that blows this chance," the redhead spoke up, scratching behind his head disappointedly. "Maybe next week'll be better. Much better." He turned on his heel and casually walked up to the turned back of Roxas, only stopping when Roxas twitched ever so slightly. He smiled. Then waited.
"I'm Axel. Something tells me that we're gonna be meeting up here a lot, dontchathink?"
Roxas at first disregarded that Axel had said anything in that way to him. He made it seem as if they were friends ever since they were in the womb. But whatever, he thought. He's probably just another druggy. Give him a week and he'll be on the news as a dead guy in a DUI car crash. His fingers twitched in his pockets and with a cautious look over his shoulder, he saw the man's face for the first time and he swore that he'd never seen someone glow that much in a long, long while.
"Roxas," he muttered. "My name's Roxas."
Axel's cocky smile widened and he flicked a small silver hoop earring jauntily on his left ear when he replied, "Hey, Roxas. Nice to meet you. Can you tell me something? You afraid of heights?"
And Roxas wondered, as he opened the door without returning an answer, how did he know to ask that? He was afraid that this night and the ones following would remain very, VERY unlucky.
once again i ask: loved it? hated it? hey, why not review it?
and that wraps up the first chapter! was that a cliffhangerish ending? ...ah well. i had to do it. XD i'm looking forward to to working on this one along with the other stories that i've posted here and haven't updarted in...ok...a while? DX
i'm reading huckleberry finn for school and it inspired me greatly to write tonight...even though i'm banned from the comp right now. DX i had a snow day today. can you believe that? me and my dad drove to school and we were nearly to the entrance when me madre calls and says that the website said that school WAS CLOSED DUE TO ICY CONDITIONS. i was like: holy...shit. -makes uturn- DX
...save me...I'M ON INTERNET DEPRIVATION.
are YOU afraid of heights?