026 : Tears

Soul's eyebrows furrowed in deep concentration as he starred at the black and white keys under his slightly chubby little fingers, trying so hard to press the right ones to make a simple, yet beautiful, melody come out of the old grand piano without the slightest flaw.

He was currently in his daily two-hour piano lesson that he'd gone to for around three years right now, beginning when he was three.

The six year old winced as his finger accidentally landed in between two keys, causing both of them to play when he only wanted one.

"No, no, Mr. Evans." His teacher scolded as he craned his head over as Soul stopped his playing.

"You don't want to hit both the middle C and D, only the C." He said, Soul nodding in agreement at something he'd already known he'd say.

"Now, from the top." The middle-aged teacher who reeked of cigars and whisky ordered, making Soul sigh. He was just a half page, six scores, away from completing the piece, yet now he had to start from the beginning. Five full, double sided pages back.

Closing his eyes and sighing yet again before beginning, he started to gracefully move his little fingers to play the right notes. He felt a bead of sweat travel from the back of his neck to be absorbed by his white undershirt collar as he worked through the musical piece in deep concentration so he wouldn't screw up again. As he finally arrived at the last note, he allowed his finger to rest on the key for a second in an inner victory for finally finishing the piece that he'd been working on for the past two days. Usually he could memorize a piece in half an hour or less, but he was having no such luck with this accursed score.

"Ordinary."

That word from his teacher cut through Soul's slight ego boost, deflating him more then ever. How he absolutely detested that word.

"You didn't have any feeling in that piece, and so it wasn't as good as it could be. You don't want to disappoint your parents, do you?" The teacher continued as he leaned over to easily play the melody that Soul had been having difficulty with up until now.

"Am I right?"

"Y-Yes sir." Soul stuttered. To disappoint his parents was the last thing the young boy wanted to do.

"Well, that is all for today. You are free to go."

"Thank you sir." Soul said, hiding his relief in his young voice as he stuffed his papers into his small messenger bag as he let his stubby legs carry him to the door and then out, making sure not to fall as there was a slightly hidden step down.

His ruby eyes glimmered in the mid day sun as he felt the summer breeze go through his short silver hair. He allowed his young mind to think of better things then the cramped room and stinky teacher. Like how it was Friday and tomorrow would be Saturday and so maybe Mommy would bring him to the park…

But he bowed his head in sadness at the weak hope. Even though he had asked the past five weekends, she had demanded that she'd been too busy and so he had been stuck with one of his ten nannies, all of whom were overly stiff and seemed to be afraid if they did the slightest thing that he didn't agree to. He didn't like it when people were skittish or afraid around him. He was just like them when it really came down to it anyway, so it really made him yearn for them to treat him normally, too.

He looked up to find that his black (sometimes white) limo had yet to appear and as he looked down at his expensive watch, he found that he had been let out a whole half an hour early. He turned back towards the fairly large house to find the silhouette of his teacher in the kitchen, putting a bottle to his lips. Soul scrunched up his nose in distaste as he knew he was drinking. And the young boy was smart enough to know it was something strong at the shape and size of the bottle.

But the thought of getting out early and having some time for himself made his disgust go away. He skipped towards the bench that was just outside the gate of his piano teacher's home that he was ordered to sit on if he got out before the car was there. It was a wooden one worn by the elements, but Soul liked it all the more as it relaxed him and he enjoyed how his legs hung just above the grassy patch of ground between the fence and sidewalk.

Slinging off his bag from his thin shoulder, he calmly sat down, allowing his legs to swing underneath him like always. Looking up at the laughing sun, he exhaled deeply as he realized it was very hot today. But he had been told by his Mommy, and his Daddy, that he shouldn't take off any of his clothes in public. They said it showed his worth and that it'd be rude and un-gentlemen like.

With curious eyes, he watched a plane fly across the sky, it leaving a white trail behind. Then to a butterfly that fluttered in his young face. Then at a small dandy lion flower that grew out of a crack in the cement sidewalk that blew in the breeze, it's happy color bright against the grey of cement.

But his sudden sightseeing was interrupted as he saw something, or more specifically someone, run in front of his vision and trample on the cheerful yellow flower.

Speechlessly, he hopped from the bench and kneeled down to the flower that was now broken. He turned his silver head to stare in the direction the person had run off to and found that the culprit was right in his line of sight, turning around to face him not twenty feet away.

He noted as his eyes widened that she was about his age, if not younger, and was obviously a girl with her short hair that were put up in pigtails with flamboyant ribbons and how she wore a breezy red dress that barely reached her knees. He liked the color, it reminded him of his Mommy's eyes that he'd inherited.

Without any words, she walked closer to him and crouched down at the flower.

Alarmed by her presence, Soul jolted up from his down position to sit back down on the bench.

"I'm sorry." She said in defeat as she tried in vain to put the flower back to it's former glory.

Soul didn't answer and chose to pretend he was interested in his gold cuff links that were in for form of 'S's for his first name.

"Do you talk?" She continued to ask in her innocent voice as she stood, the wind ruffling through her short dress.

"Are you mad at me and so aren't talking to me?" She continued to ask, Soul's eyes moving to look at his imported dress shoes that were polished to perfection.

"MAKA-CHAAAN!"

"Oh no…my Papa…" The now identified Maka whined as she looked down the road to see the figure of a man with shocking red hair.

"I'll make it up to you." Maka said as she gave Soul a bright smile just as he finally glanced up, making him bashfully stare back down at the grass below his shoes.

"Bye!"

And just like that, the blond ran away. Soul mustered enough courage to look up to her retreating form, watching until she was picked up by the red haired man and whisked away into one of the expensive looking houses.

He jumped off the bench once again to look at the flower that she'd touched not a minute ago. With chewed fingernails (a habit he'd been told to break), he picked the crumpled flower, twirling it between his index and thumb finger.

Glancing around, he turned to his messenger bag and took out the latest book he was reading. His Mommy had ordered him to read it and he didn't like it because there were no pictures, but when he'd finally agreed she'd smiled. He'd liked that part. Opening it, he let the pages naturally settle in the middle before he daintily put the flower in and then closed it back up.

He sat down once again, now actually thinking over what he'd just done.

"Maka..." He let the foreign name play on his lips as his grip on the book tightened.

: - S - O - U - L - - E - A - T - E - R - : - R - E - T - A - E - - L - U - O - S - :

Soul glanced around as he sat on the bench once again as he had ten minutes to relax before his ride would come. It was Friday once again and he still had the hope of being able to go to the park with his Mommy again.

Looking up to the deep blue skies, he failed to notice as someone ran down the street and plopped themself next to him on the bench.

"Here."

The sudden, soft voice cut through his zoning and he almost fell off the bench in shock as he found a small bouquet of flowers right in front of his nose.

Hesitantly taking them with his small hands, he dared to glance over to find the same girl from before.

"Maka…" He whispered out as he moved his eyes from her pudgy face to the twelve yellow daisy flowers that starred back at him.

"Ah! You remembered my name!" She said with happiness as she clapped her hands.

"What's your name?"

Soul stayed silent as he moved his red eyes to the sky once again.

"Come on…I've been waiting for a few days now, I had to get new flowers cause the ones I first got died. And they were hard to find TOO." Maka said with a pout as she jumped off the bench to stand in front of the silver haired boy, arms crossed in front of her chest in as much anger as she could muster.

Soul glanced at her determined face, looking away in defeat. His Mommy had always told him to not interact with others unless she said so because they were dangerous and dirty but…

As he looked at her once again, she didn't look mean even as she tried to glare at him. And she looked really clean, especially with her lime green shirt and white shorts.

"Soul." He whispered, almost so quietly Maka didn't catch it.

"Soul-kun." She said with a smile, her anger dissipating as quickly as it'd come.

He blinked as he continued to look at her. No one had addressed him with that suffix. It was always 'chan' with his parents (if they were in a good mode) and 'sama' with everyone else.

"I hope I can see you again Soul-kun!" She said as she gave a wave of her hand before skipping off, Soul watching in fascination.

He'd never meet anyone like her before.

Maybe that was why he felt nervous, even more then when he played the piano, and why his heart beat was now so loud he could hear the steady thump thump thump rhythm of it in his ears.

: - S - O - U - L - - E - A - T - E - R - : - R - E - T - A - E - - L - U - O - S - :

"May I please go early?" Soul asked, holding down the inner plead that threatened to filter through his voice.

The middle aged man raised an eyebrow, but didn't immediately object. In the past seven months, Soul had been exceptionally good and, in reward, the aged man would let him go a little earlier. He really didn't care and he got paid the same, large amount without fail so it really didn't matter to him.

He glanced at the clock to find they still had twenty minutes left in schedule, and then back at the bubbly boy who had recently began to seem more lively.

"Fine, get out of here." He said as he turned away with a shrug.

"Thank you sir!" Soul beamed as he jammed his papers into his small bag and running to the front door, his small feet making light thumps on the wood and then cement on the outside.

Soul noticed, with a small smile, that Maka was already waiting for him on the bench with something tightly clasped in her small hands.

"Maka-chan!" Soul said in glee as he threw his bag on the bench before standing in front of her to make sure he got her full attention.

Over the months, Maka had become accustomed to sit with him in wait if he got out early. At first, Soul was so on edge that his leg would start twitching. His Mommy would be so displeased with him if she saw him intermingle with such…commoners (Soul's pretty sure that that's the word she uses). But eventually, he started to become jaded and found that she wasn't all that bad. Especially when she brought popsicles on the especially hot days, which were MUCH too common for him to have at his mansion.

He quickly found that he liked how her eyes glimmered and her face lit up whenever he said something she found amusing or that one time he'd once brought her a box of chocolates that one of his parents' friends had given him. He liked the way her pigtails swished as she ran away before the car came or how she laughed when he tried to explain how to act and have manners. She thought all his demanding customs were silly, especially how you had three forks at dinner time.

"I want to show you something Soul-kun!" She chirped as she jumped of the bench to stand next to him.

"What is it?" He asked in interest. He had shown her quite a few trinkets or things, but this was a rare occasion that she had something to show him.

"It's a present that my Mama just gave me this morning. Now close your eyes and hold out your hands." She explained breathlessly, Soul noticing that she was hopping in place, no doubt because of her excitement.

With a nod of his silver head, Soul held out his hands with the palms facing up. He felt something very light being placed before he felt her curl his fingers back around.

"Alright, you can open them now." Maka said.

"But you haven't taken your hands off of mine yet." Soul noticed as he looked down to find her hands over his. He felt odd as his hands began to feel clammy with her touch and how his cheeks felt warm.

"Oh..." she noticed too as her own cheeks felt warm before a small bubble of laughter escaped her throat. At her own laughter, Soul cracked a smile before giggling along too. Before they knew it, the two youngsters were all out laughing for no reason at all except for the fact that they were together.

"Soul Eater Evans."

At the sound of his name in such an icy tone, Soul's body became ridged as his laughter died in his now choked up throat. He'd know that voice anywhere.

Turning around, he turned around to see his beautiful mother standing there with all her glory. Maka's grip on Soul's hands tightened. There was only a deadly silence as Soul's mother just stared at the young couple.

"Come here."

Soul held down a wince at the ice in her voice and when he dared to look up, he noticed that her radiant red eyes were hard and narrowed.

"I said come here Soul Eater." She repeated, this time in a demanding whisper, as she clasped her hands in front of her. Although it was a hot day, she was still wearing a bright red dress that seemed very expensive and was usually only worn in ballrooms.

He was still so scarred that he couldn't move. It was as if he was petrified by her below freezing eyes. But as he felt a pressure let off of his hands, he turned to see that Maka had let go and had now placed her hands on his chest, trying with her little strength to push him towards his parent. He opened and closed his mouth, still trying to think of what was best to do, before finally allowing his short legs to carry him over to his mother.

"I don't know who you are girl." The beautiful lady spat out, making Soul wince as he noticed Maka's eyes widen, "But you have absolutely no right to touch, or for that matter even be near, the heir of the Evans family."

Maka only lowered her head to stare at the boring cement, still not comprehending what she had done wrong.

"Mommy..." Soul started as he tugged at her dress.

"Mother." She corrected as she slapped his hand away, not wanting him to stretch the fine fabric.

"We will be going now. Do not bother to come here again as Soul will stop coming here."

At the sudden declaration, Soul's crimson eyes widened as he turned to Maka who looked like she was going to start crying. But his concerned gaze was cut short as he felt his wrist being pulled into the white limo by his mother just as her tears started to fall. Soul wondered what was going on with Maka...why... and how was water falling out of her eyes? He'd never seen anything like it, nor did he remember doing something like it himself. At his house, it was taught that emotions aren't something to be brashly showcased. You had to be collected.

"Soul-kun!" Maka yelled as she ran to him just as he entered the car, grabbing his hand.

"I want you to have it." She whispered for only him to hear, Soul's eyes widening as he noticed that whatever she wanted to show him was still tightly clutched in his small hand.

"Stay back!" His mother scolded as she slapped Maka's hands away, making the young girl recoil just as the older woman slammed the door shut.

And so they drove away, leaving a teary eyed Maka behind who was trying to keep up with her little legs but found it all in vain.

"I'm very disappointed in you Soul Eater. I came here to pick you up to go somewhere special since you've been doing so good in piano lately, but I see that you don't deserve it. Disgraceful. Conversing with such a commoner." She said as if the word was really a curse.

His mother's voice cut through the thick silence but all Soul could do was swallow, trying to get rid of a lump in his throat that had suddenly formed and wouldn't seem to go away.

"You will go to your room where you will remain until tomorrow. You will not have lunch nor dinner." She continued to say as she twisted her engagement ring that had an overly large diamond in it.

There were no more words as they arrived at their huge mansion. Soul obediently got out of the car with his bag and trudged up the spiral staircase to his large room where the three maids that were cleaning scampered away. Soul glanced around to check for anyone else, even going into his private bathroom just to make sure.

Running to his bed, he threw himself down as he finally opened his palm. The anticipation of what small treasure could be here had been really killing him, but the fear of his Mom-...Mother seeing it and taking it away easily outdid his anticipation.

He gasped as he saw the skinny golden chain and matching golden heart pendent. He held it up so that it glimmered in the light and his eyes widened as he noticed a small clasp on the side of the heart. With slightly shaking fingers, he finally managed to open the small pendent to see three smiling faces in a tiny portrait shot. He could immediately recognize Maka and he'd seen the red haired man, her 'Papa' as she called him (not Father like Soul had to), from afar a few times and so he could safely presume that the radiant woman was Maka's mother.

His eyes suddenly started to sting in a way he'd never in his young life felt before as he felt large tears slide down his face from his bright eyes to drip off his chin.

Maka had been so nice to him yet all he had done to her in the end was hurt her. She had been the first person in his life who had seen him as he really was and not just the heir to the most famous and well off family in the land.

She had been his first friend.

And he'd lost her.


A/N: ...yeah. I need to stop writing so much PianoPlaying!Soul but...it's just too cute (fangirl squeal). I didn't really want it to be AU but I thought it'd be a little boring if I didn't add a little somethin-somethin. I actually thought about not posting this at all (it's been sitting in my documents FOREVER) but...I did anyway :1 Review?