Hello people. It's been a long, long while. And yes, I'm still on a writing hiatus, but this idea suddenly came to me and won't leave me alone until I write it down. So here you go, a short one-shot for all you lovely readers out there. And don't forget to review after. Always makes my day.

Caught in the Middle

He sits on his favorite armchair

(because it's the one she often sat on when she came for those late afternoon visits)

and stares at the door, listens to the constant knocking,

(she always did knock too, even when he gave her a spare key of his apartment)

and contemplates whether to answer it or not. He isn't in the mood to go out today

(they always preferred the indoors, he, she, two steaming cups of hot chocolate with marshmallows, soft jazz or alternative music, a good book, and a cozy cuddle)

and knows that he will be forced to go once he opens the door to the now-pissed-off female who considers herself as his girlfriend.

"Damn it Rei," he hears her screech outside

(Aya never screeches like that)

and he reluctantly stands up and heads for the door. He opens it and meets the cold glare of Ran Kotobuki, the former number one gal of Shibuya, and possibly, of the whole country of Japan.

"What the hell took you so long?" she growls, stomping her feet and marching inside his apartment, not waiting to be invited in. Rei closes the door and follows the girl with his eyes,

(she would always walk gracefully towards the sofa, sit on her favorite chair, and smile at him as he followed suit)

not really wanting to argue anymore. Ran turned and frowns.

"You haven't been answering my calls, Otohata," she tells him coldly, and he is too tired to answer back. "What is wrong with you? Are you hiding from me?"

("You never really had the time for me, Rei," she whispered softly, tears brimming around her eyes.)

He walks to her and they are standing a foot away from each other – she with her fiery eyes challenging his gaze. She gives up after a while. "I don't know what to do with you anymore," Ran finally sighs, raising her hands in defeat and sitting down on his favorite armchair, on Aya's favorite armchair. He almost pulls Ran away from it. Instead, he remains standing, staring at her supposed-to-be girlfriend, wondering why he cannot get the image of the blue-haired girl out of his mind.

"You're breaking up with me?" he asked unbelievingly, glaring at the beautiful lady sobbing in front of him.

"You said it yourself Rei," Aya whispered, smiling oh-so-sadly he thought his heart would melt. "'Love is just a state of mind, a puzzle made of pieces you can't find.'"

"What are you talking about?" he all but hissed, trying to keep the voice of impatience out of his voice.

"It's not going to work," she answered. "We both knew it from the start. You're too… you and I'm too me. We're two different puzzle pieces that will never fit. You're a main piece and I'll always belong in a corner."

"Stop this," he commanded her, grabbing her arm and pulling her towards him, hoping that his touch would make her change her mind.

She shook her head sadly. "You never really had the time for me, Rei," she whispered softly, tears brimming around her eyes. "Being a center piece of the puzzle takes too much of your time. I can't always be the understanding girlfriend you want me to be."

And she kissed him softly one last time, and she walked away, never once looking back.

Ran stands up and wraps her arms around his neck, bringing her face inches from his. "What are you thinking?" she whispers

(she would always whisper whenever she would ask questions that she wasn't sure if Rei would answer)

and he stares into her eyes and sees Aya's blue ones. She presses her lips against his and he feels Aya's soft kiss. She wraps her arms around him tightly, and he imagines Aya in his arms, so small, so fragile.

Ran pulls away, defeated. "Why can't you love me like you've loved her?" she whispers one more time, pleading, begging.

He looks at her and sees Aya crying on that day she said goodbye, and he pulls away and turns around, not wanting to see the tears in Ran's cheeks, not wanting to her sobs.

"I'm sorry," he whispers back

("Please don't leave me," he whispered, but Aya was already too far away to hear him)

and walks away, feeling his own puzzle shatter into pieces once again.


No, seriously, it's the end. That's why it's called a one-shot. No second chapter whatsoever. So stop requesting for a new one! Seriously. No. Eeeeep!