The world returns to you

Xxx Author's note xxxxxxx

This is my first fic, so I really need the constructive criticism you guys are famous for. So come on, I can take it… I think…

Also, I'd like to thank all the other authors, particularly Plushietiger and Silver Crescent. Thanks, guys, for inspiring me to write this fic in the first place.

XXXX Disclaimer XXXXX

I do not own The world ends with you, though I do have the game. :)

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I found myself sprawled onto the scramble for the fourth time The crowded streets were as imposing as ever. I stood shakily, realizing what had happened. I felt tears well up in my eyes.

"Why? Why!?! What the HELL!?!"

Suddenly, I realized. People were crowding around me, staring. My eyes widened. They could see me! I let the tears flow freely for the first time in my life. I was making a scene, but I didn't care. I was ALIVE!

I walked over to Hachiko, my ears feeling the cold for the first time in a while. The statue of the Grand dog was as huge as ever. I instinctively found myself wary, searching the statue for any signs of Noise. Old habits die hard, I guess. As I came near the statue, I started to worry.

Was this all just a dream? Do my friends exist? What if-

"Yo, Neku, over here!"

I started. Leaning next to the grand statue were Beat and Rhyme. I almost cried then and there, until I caught myself.

Damn emotions.

Beat ran up to me and subjected me to an intense noogie, while Rhyme giggled as I struggled to free myself, but eventually grew stern.

"Beat, is this any way to treat your friends?"

Beat dropped me reluctantly. "Sorry, Rhyme."

I returned my hair to its spiky state and glared at Beat.

"You should be apologizing to me, Daisukenojo."

Beat growled and Rhyme giggled.

"Yo, who said you could call me that, Pho-" He seemed to notice something for the first time. "Hey, man, where'd your headphones go?"
My lips curled into a small smile. "I ditched them."

Beat stared at me, his mouth gaping. After a few moments he grinned and held out his hand. "'Bout time, Pho- I mean, Neku!"

Rhyme smiled. "Good job, Neku! Like they say, the best person to be is yourself!"

Beat smiled at her, and I could see his love for her in the smile. "How do you do that, Rhyme?"

Suddenly I felt something missing. "Where's Shiki?"

Beat shrugged. "Beats me!" he exclaimed, grinning.

I stared at him, trying not to laugh at his intentionally lame pun.

Rhyme elbowed him in the ribs, holding in a chuckle.

"I'm over here," came an uncertain voice.

We all turned around to see a girl waving uncertainly at us.

"Shiki?" we all exclaimed.

I had completely forgotten about Shiki's new form. She looked completely different, but not altogether worse. Her pale chocolate hair flowed down to her neck, and her wiry glasses showed off her beautiful lavender eyes. She wore a simple outfit, a jacket and jeans that she probably made herself. Altogether, she was downright pretty.

Gah! What am I thinking? It's not like I like her or anything… do I?

One thing was for sure, though, if I had a relationship with anyone, it'd have to be Shiki. Not only because we had literally been through hell together, and that I knew her darkest secrets as well as she knew mine, but because there was a certain spark about her, a spark that I knew no appearance could decide.

"Umm… Neku?"

I realized that I had been staring at Shiki for a full minute as she squirmed under my eyes. I shook my head and shrugged. Beat and Rhyme were staring at us with bemused eyes.

"Sorry, I just zoned out."

I then realized that Shiki's eyes were watering, as if she were holding back tears.

"This is me, guys. The actual me." She stared at her shoes. "If you don't want to be friends, then I'll-"

In a flash, I realized that she had taken my stare completely the wrong way.

"Are you kidding? You're beautif-"

I paled as I realized what I had said. Beat and Rhyme started sniggering, and Shiki looked up and blushed. I felt the blood return to my face, and I turned as red as Shiki.

I looked away. I felt Beat and Rhyme's eyes on the back of my head.

Rhyme clapped her hands. "Sorry, guys, I forgot! Beat and I have to… um… go back home!"

Beat wrinkled his nose "Aw, come on, Rhyme! Whaddaya mean we have ta-"

Rhyme nudged him with her elbow and subtly looked at us.

Beat suddenly seemed to remember something. "Oh, Yeah! We gotta go home, and, uh…." Beat began to mutter, and Rhyme pulled him away, smirking at us.

And I was left in the most awkward situation in the universe.

And that's it for the first chapter. Don't worry, I plan to make more, but I need some Reviews or even words. Anything to show that someone cares about this fic.