A Crush Just Fades Away, Love Goes On Forever


It was Friday, exactly five years since the battle against Deep Blue happened. If it wasn't for the young boy who's life he'd erased from existence, they'd all be erased from existence by now, too. That boy happened to be Aoyama Masaya, the one you'd all least expect. He's still alive today, now eighteen, like his girlfriend, Momomiya Ichigo. When it was all over, she repeated to herself over and over again that she was free from what she thought was a curse, when it was her fate, her destiny, and her only chance at love... Of course, that chance is still there... For her and him...

Grey clouds had formed across the already grey sky. The sun was nowhere to be seen and rain poured from above and onto grey buildings. The couple that lived in Tokyo Metropolis shared shelter under the same black umbrella, as they walked slowly and shared eachother's laughter... Well, not exactly. Ichigo wasn't actually 'there' to laugh with her boyfriend at all... She was lost in her own thoughts, trying to erase the image of another young boy... Shirogane Ryou.

Why? Why do I keep thinking of him? I don't even know him anymore!

"Ichigo. Ichigo?"

But I can't help but admire his gorgeous face, his golden hair, his-

"Ichigo..."

His beautiful eyes, his body, it's-

"Ichigo!"

"Huh! What?"

Ichigo let her eyes wonder around a bit until she finally was fixed onto Masaya. Masaya turned around to confront her. He let go of the umbrella completely and put both of his hands on her shoulders.

"Ichigo... What have you been thinking about lately? I'm worried about you..."

Masaya moved closer towards Ichigo as she froze. She could feel his warm breath against her neck.

"Well..."

If I don't get that idiot out of my head now, I'll never have a future with Aoyama-kun! I know I'm going to regret this, but... Oh c'mon, Ichigo! He's your boyfriend, he's understanding, damnit!

Ichigo grabbed Masaya by the shirt in a sexy way and pulled him so that his nose touched hers. Masaya's eyes widened. She closed her eyes and pushed her lips against his. It felt nice at first, now that Masaya was returning it, but something felt wrong. She felt betrayal... Had she betrayed someone in doing this?

It's not working! Maybe... Maybe I just miss him... Maybe... No... No! It can't be!

Ichigo let go of Masaya's shirt as her lips departed from his. He fell to the ground and tried to get up.

"Ichigo!"

Ichigo was gone. She had already sprinted off. She was running away from... Her boyfriend... Why was she doing this?

Maybe... Me and Aoyama-kun... Maybe it was just a crush... Maybe... It all makes sense now. I don't love him... I love-

"Shirogane..."

Ichigo changed directions as she followed the yellow brick road (that sounds familiar) to Café Mew Mew, which had been abandoned long ago by the customers... She wondered if Ryou even lived there still... Ichigo finally found an entrance to the place. She smiled as she reached the doors, but then frowned.

"What if he doesn't like me?"

"Who?"

Ichigo turned around to see none other than Ryou, who's hands were full with bags of groceries.

"Um, Shirogane, I-"

"Well, it's nice of you to visit after five years..."

Ichigo looked at the ground as she tried to find something to say. Ryou sighed.

"Look, just help me with these and we'll talk about something..."

Ichigo took two bags from Ryou, who now, twenty lead the way inside.

"You know, nobody has come to visit me in a long time..."

"What about Akasaka-san?"

Ryou put his bags on a nearby table as he took Ichigo's and did the same.

"Didn't you hear? Keiichiro got married to Rei."

Ichigo shook her head as Ryou gave her a familiar smirk.

"You don't keep in touch, do you, Strawberry?"

Ichigo blushed.

"Don't start that again..."

"Why not? It's a lovely pet name for you..."

"I'm not an animal..."

"You could transform into one, though."

"So can you!"

"But I can control it."

"So what? Ugh, you haven't changed at all!"

"Neither have you."

"Arrgghh! Forget it!"

Ichigo turned her back towards him as he grew awfully silent. Ichigo noticed.

"You're the only one that didn't visit me, Strawberry. Why?"

Ichigo put her finger to her lips as she stammered.

"I, um, eh..."

"Minto comes rarely, usually to have a cup of tea... Retasu comes every week to check up on me."

Ryou laughed. Ichigo felt cold. Why didn't she visit?

I don't even know myself, Shirogane...

"Purin comes with her siblings to get something to eat now and then... Zakuro comes once a year. Why didn't you?"

"I... I don't know. I was caught up with Aoyama-kun..."

"Him..."

"And just now, I ran away from him..."

Ryou's eyes widened.

"What?"

"Yes, because I had to see you, I needed to see you... I just realized something..."

"And what was that?"

Ichigo turned around to face Ryou again.

"I, um, how do I put this?"

"Spit it out, Strawberry!"

"Shut up! I love you, damnit!"

Ryou froze. The look on his face was enough for Ichigo as she was about to run out... But Ryou caught her wrist.

"Ichigo, you idiot."

"What? You don't love me, I understand. I'll just... Leave! Let go!"

"You are an idiot. Now, how do I put it?"

Ryou cupped Ichigo's chin within his hand as he looked into her eyes.

"I love you, too, Strawberry."

Ichigo blushed as Ryou closed the gap between themselves. They shared a kiss that they both returned to eachother. It was a lovely reunion indeed between the two lovers. Ichigo was given a chance at love and so was he... And they got it.