Summary: I'm so glad that I was able to love you from the beginning.
AN: Duhrrr, I'm addicted to writing LenRin oneshots. I don't know why it's so much fun. But I guess these two are just impossibly cute. I might try some KaitoMiku and GakupoLuka later, too.
I should just jump on the bandwagon and do a LenRin oneshot collection, huh? LOL... if you guys actually want to read more of my junk, then I might turn this one into a collection. I dunno.
I worked a little bit harder on my descriptions in this piece. BUT OH MY GOSH, IT'S SO FREAKING CHEESY, LOL. -hides from shame-
Well, as usual, I must make a note to readers: please do not complain about twincest in your reviews. Thank ya!
"But why, Len?!" Rin protested. She slammed a hand down, just barely holding on to the tears that formed in her eyes. "Why?! What are you trying to prove?"
"I don't know!!" Len yelled back with the same level of frustration. He understood his own actions just about as well as she did, and the confusing feelings that twisted around in his stomach were making him feel sick.
The two exchanged intense stares from across the table. The cold, lonesome oatmeal in their bowls was long forgotten. Within the thick silence, only the ticking of the clock dared to make a sound. And to Len, that small sound almost seemed to echo throughout the kitchen. At a helpless loss for words, Len grabbed his backpack from the floor and strapped it on.
Finally, Rin stood up. Her chair whimpered loudly across the tile as she scooted it back. "Len... I don't want you to go. You don't HAVE to go, you—"
"Dang it, Rin!!" Len interrupted loudly. He turned away and began to walk towards the door as he spoke. With his back turned, he took a desperate and slight comfort in knowing that Rin couldn't see how he was biting his lip, or how he also had tears welling up in his eyes. "I... I wish I had never loved you."
And even though he couldn't see her face, nor could she see his, just imagining the pained expression that he knew Rin was making made Len's chest sting with guilt. Not wanting to give her an opportunity to respond, he opened the door and left, quickly disposing of all impulses to look back. And he ran.
He ran, gripping his backpack hard enough to snap some of its contents in half. He ran, carrying the heavy load that was his heart.
He ran, with nothing on his mind but an image of Rin.
Len had always felt slightly insecure and insignificant when he was around Rin. Ever since they were children, Rin and Len had been an inseparable duet that seemed to fit together like puzzle pieces. It came to the point where Len was playing with her almost everyday. He remembered how anxious he always was to see her. It seemed like with Rin, life was a never-ending adventure that offered nothing but eternal excitement.
But somehow, perhaps without him realizing it, a dependence on Rin developed. Whenever she had other places to be, or other friends to play with, Len became intensely jealous and lonely. With age came a higher tolerance to being without his best friend, but with it came also a realization as to why he felt the way he did.
He was very in love with Rin.
They did everything together. They went to school together, they ate meals together, they went shopping together (albeit, Len did this last one reluctantly).
And one of his favorite memories was seeing fireworks for the first time with Rin. He would never forget that day. He was young... maybe six or seven. Their town was having a festival, and as usual, his parents were too busy with work to take him. But then, the night of the celebration, Rin showed up at his door in a yukata and said, "Len, let's go see the fireworks!"
He would never forget his anxiousness, sitting on a blanket next to Rin with hundreds of other people scrambling for a good viewing spot. The sound of the first firework whistling up through the night sky was still very vivid in his mind. How he and Rin both jumped and grabbed each other when it set off with a "BOOM" was probably his favorite part, because their fear quickly melted into excitement and awe.
The beautiful flower of lights that had bloomed in the sky was amazing. It was a stunning, vivid yellow; it seemed to illuminate the entire world.
Len was sad when it began to fade. How could something so spectacular die away so quickly? His childish disappointment was relieved somewhat when another firework went off with an impressive thunder, but none of the following fireworks gave him quite the thrill that the first one did.
Somehow throughout the event, he ended up holding Rin's hand. It wasn't until the grand finale that he noticed. His eyes wandered down to their hands, and then upwards, only to see none other than Rin's smiling face. He, in turn, found himself smiling. This memory, one of the most lucid memories of Len's childhood, was definitely his most cherished.
Years passed, things changed, and finally, Rin and Len were in their junior year of high school. It was then that Len worked up the courage to ask out his childhood friend. Now they were in their senior year, and very close to graduation. Things had gone so well between them, and yet... Len felt strangely lacking.
He felt like he had missed something or made an incorrect decision somewhere along the line, but when he saw Rin's smile, which was now laced with a womanly maturity, his chest began to ache uncomfortably. Len felt very insignificant when Rin smiled.
And so, after about a week's consideration, he made a decision. He was going to leave town. Not permanently, but he wanted to get away from the girl he was so emotionally dependent upon. He wanted to grow up, become a man worthy of her, and come back with the same maturity etched into his face.
He wanted to bloom without fading away.
After running for a while, Len slowed down into a more relaxed jog, only stopping every now and then to catch his breath and take a sip from his water bottle. By now, he was quite far from the city outskirts. The sky was beginning to slip into its evening colors, and he wondered where he should go.
His cell phone began to vibrate in his backpack, startling him out of his quiet reverie. Fishing it out, he stopped to take a look at the caller ID.
The bright screen read, "Kagamine Rin".
Len fought with himself internally. His first impulse was to answer it, but he knew it was too early in his journey to give in. He knew that the moment he heard Rin's voice, he'd want to go running back to her side.
Though it pained him, he let the phone keep ringing as he continued to walk. It felt like a long time before it finally fell silent.
It had been a week. Len was staying a town or two over from his hometown, in a small inn. The citizens were preparing for an upcoming festival, and Len felt rather alienated from their activities. After all, he didn't belong here. I don't belong anywhere, he told himself bitterly.
When all the decorations and booths were set up, Len walked through the streets, eying everything critically. Maybe he was biased, but this town seemed so much less impressive than his did. To Len, his town radiated a cheerful spirit and attitude of friendliness whenever a festival came around.
He at last settled down onto an unoccupied bench. After all, he wasn't obligated to help with anything here. Watching unfamiliar faces pass by, Len heaved a deep sigh. Though he really wasn't that far away from his home, it felt like he had moved to a different country.
Len reached for his only companion — his backpack — and dug around. Buried under everything was his black cell phone. For Len, seeing it was like looking at a dead body. After a brief pause of consideration, he took it out of his backpack and flipped it open.
"One voice mail." It was that call he had ignored last week.
As if he was lighting a stick of dynamite, he nervously pressed a button and held the phone up to his ear. A voice played that made his entire body tense up.
"Hi, Len... it's me. Listen, I'm sorry I got so angry. I'm not actually angry. I guess I was just surprised... and this is selfish of me, but I didn't want to go without you for so long. To tell the truth, I was looking forward to going to the festival next week with you. Do you remember our first festival together...? ...Probably not. Sorry, that's a dumb question..."
There was a slight silence. It seemed like Rin was struggling for words.
"Well, I just wanted to tell you... 'Good luck.' If leaving is something you have to do, then I'm behind you one hundred percent. I hope you're okay... I, I love you Len. I hope you know that."
The moment he heard the words "Good luck", tears began to sting his eyes. Once the message had ended, they were streaming freely down his cheeks. Bent over, Len gripped his chest, trying to allay the sensation of his heart ripping into two. As he sobbed quietly, he attempted to sort out the different thoughts that were tangled inside his head.
"Rin... Rin..." he muttered her name, with the subconscious hope that saying her name would somehow summon her to his side; that she would appear and stroke his back comfortingly like she always did.
How could he have been such a fool? Why didn't he realize that he didn't need to go on some 'soul-searching' journey to feel better about himself? Why didn't he realize that it was okay for him to cling to Rin a little bit? All he had to do was tell her that he loved her!! And he couldn't even do that. Rin believed in him, and he didn't even believe in himself.
After a few minutes had passed, he wiped his face and decisively began to dial a number. He then strapped his backpack on and began walking.
Riiiiing. Riiiiiiing. His walk broke into a run as he waited for someone on the other end to answer. He knew what he had to do: go back to her. Len made a beeline for the train station.
Just barely making it onto the train in time, Len found it impossible to hold back a smile. "Rin?" he asked eagerly.
"Len?! Where are you?!"
"Rin...!!" Len caught his breath. He flopped onto a seat in the train, and glanced out the window as the foreign town slid away. "Rin..."
Rin said nothing, but he could hear her breathing unevenly. "Rin." Just saying her name was comforting. "I lied to you... I am... so glad... I was able to love you... from the very beginning..." With a smile still plastered to his face, he felt warm tears rolling down his cheeks again. "Rin, I love you..."
Rin responded with a sob. "I love you, too, Len...! C-come home!"
"Already am...!" Feeling like an enormous weight had been lifted off his shoulders, Len told Rin about his dull, anti-climatic travels as the train huffed along, working to reunite the two in time for the festival.
The train slowed to a stop, and Len could already see Rin standing outside. Everything around him seemed like a blur. Standing up, opening the door, and running into her arms... it was all sort of surreal. But good. Definitely good.
It was already dark, and Len noticed that Rin was wearing a very cute yukata. "Len, I'm so glad you're back in time!" Rin beamed, nuzzling her face in Len's chest like a cat. "You ARE going to see the fireworks with me, right?!"
"Of course." Len pat her on the head awkwardly, feeling both giddy to see her again and embarrassed to have her hugging him like this.
"Len...?" She looked up at him. Len saw a lot of conflict in her expression, as if she was having a difficult time deciding what to say. Her mouth opened and closed a few times before words came out. "I, um, meant what I said on the phone..."
"Huh? Which part?"
"I... I love you..."
Though she had already said it a couple of times, seeing her say it in person gave it so much more weight. Len replied almost immediately, "I love you too. I always have..."
Len stroked her cheek softly, watching her eyes carefully for something...
There it was. She closed her eyes and leaned forward onto her toes to reach him. He bent down and met her halfway. Her lips were cold from her standing outside, but he was more than happy to share his warmth.
And then there was an explosion.
Poor Len almost jumped out of his skin, but Rin on the other hand looked upwards calmly and saw a bright red firework melting into the black sky. "Oh man, the fireworks have already started! C-c'mon, Len, we'll miss them!"
She shyly grabbed his hand and pulled him along. With a laugh, he responded, "Okay, okay, I'm coming!"
This was all Len ever really wanted. Rin by his side, her hand in his, the two of them just enjoying their time together. When he tripped, he didn't necessarily need to pull himself up; it was okay to let Rin pull him up sometimes. And as the fireworks continued to roar, Len savored the privilege of enjoying them with Rin. He wouldn't have it any other way.