A.N: ...review? :3
Sometimes Kirin wonders what it is like to kiss.
After all, she's nineteen years old. Most people experience their first kiss years before. By her age, a large portion of them have already touched as well. Kirin has done neither. The thought of touching makes her head feel warm and airy—so much that she thinks it might pop off her body and float away like a hot air balloon.
That is when Kirin laughs softly in spite of herself. What a silly thought.
Kirin may be afraid of intimate touching, but the idea of kissing appeals to her. The colorful teen magazines she reads depict it as a magical act of affection that reminds her of Disney movies. She can almost taste the rainbows on her tongue as she presses her lips to the bathroom mirror, caught up in a fantasy of it…
But, the mirror does not kiss back. It's cold and metallically, and her lips leave an imprint that she doesn't want. She rubs it away angrily and hopes that her kisses won't leave imprints on one's lips.
It strikes her then that she has never imagined whose lips are on the other side of the glass.
Hopefully not her own.
One night Kirin is struck with a strange new thought—Rasen.
They have been partners for a while now. Rasen is not the kind of man she imagines kissing. He doesn't have spiky dark brown hair like Recca. (Kirin thinks that Recca-chan is very cute.) No, Rasen has messy silver hair and golden eyes behind partially closed eyelids. He is completely and utterly emotionless, and his face holds no secrets of this.
But Kirin banishes those thoughts when she thinks of Rasen. Instead, she visualizes his lips—They're of a different kind. Small, round, pink, and glistened wet with a thin coat of his own saliva from when he licked them.
Kirin has never seen lips that look that soft.
So now Kirin sometimes imagines Rasens' lips when she kisses the mirror.
They may live together, but Kirin and Rasen aren't terribly close. She avoids reading his thoughts when necessary, because her own thoughts remain sheltered in her mind. Sometimes, she's even still shy around him, blushing slightly when he locks his gaze on her. Then, she'll grab a thin lock of dark brown hair and play idly with it as she nervously avoids his eyes.
Kirin wonders if he ever thinks about her. Curiosity overpowers her better judgment of keeping Rasen's private thoughts private, and she'll use the Shingan to read what's on his mind.
'Are you reading my thoughts, Kirin?' Rasen interrupts her.
Flustered, she quickly closes the ring and cuts off their connection.
Rasen could never love her.
It is not a thought she likes to dig up. Kirin buries it in back of head where it can't be found most of the time. But, tonight the sky is clear and star-speckled. The full moon is a big ball of white light hanging in the sky, and the air is just right. From her balcony everything is in place. Rasen is just behind the siding glass down in the living room. And it's the perfect night to lock lips.
She places her hand on the door, but she hesitates. If she tries to kiss him, will he let her? Or will he back away? Will he just up and leave? Or would he just place his hand to her lips and protest against it?
She stops and ditches the idea.
She and Rasen can never kiss. Even if he likes her, he can never love her. He would never feel her lips.
Time passes and things between them begin to change.
Rasen's voice doesn't come back all at once. It begins as a whisper, so quiet that he clutches his throat and gasps at the sound of it. He had long since forgotten what it sounds like. Hearing it pass through his lips sends a shiver down his spine.
The words, the ones that once seemed forever lost in oblivion, flow freely with such ease that it is like they were never gone at all. Later, he will wonder why he has not forgotten who to speak—it has been so long—but for now he is still in shock. He finds it hard to speak.
Rasen would cry, so entwined with the return of voice, but he has no emotions. There is no joy for him to experience.
That's fine, though. Kirin feels the emotions for him. She fills with such excitement and happiness that she bursts into tears.
Rasen stops her, "Do not cry for me," he says. "When I can not cry for myself."
Her sobbing stops only momentarily. "I'm sorry, Rasen. It's just… You're voice! It's so beautiful…"
He is flattered immensely, but it does not show. He cannot express it.
That night, Kirin watches Rasen from her futon across the room. He is awake, sitting beside the kitchen table. He stares at his palms, tracing the lines he can barely see in dark room as he recounts all the experiences in his life.
Kirin understands why he does now, even when the digital clock flashes 3:45.
Is it possible to cry without feeling? Kirin ponders upon an answer as she coyly watches tears roll down Rasen's pale cheeks.
The sight of it tortures her, almost as much as the memories deep in Rasen's head of his mother—a pale, but beautiful woman who slipped right from his fingertips. Through the pain, hope is crystallized in Kirin's chest. One day, she tells herself. One day Rasen will feel. And one day, maybe, he will love her.
Kirin is in love. She has loved Rasen for a long time now, but that was a like a love shared between close friends.
Once, she only wanted to be his friend. He was lonely, aloof, and cold. She wanted to take him under her wing, for there was only so much that he could do on his own without a voice and emotions.
Now, she wants to melt his heart. To hold him and kiss the lips she dreams of. The thought of a relationship still scares her. To be so close to another still brings fever to her…
Or so she thinks. Well, Rasen will understand.
Rasen stands before her smiling.
Since the day Kirin had witnessed him weeping, his emotions have slowly returned to him. Now before her beneath the moonlight, he is reciprocating all that he had ever meant to show to her.
Kirin can't understand why she still feels butterflies twisting in her stomach when he looks at her with passionate eyes of gold after all this time.
"Kirin," he starts. "You've been so kind to me. I cannot understand why you have, but I'm certain now that I owe you the gratitude I've been meaning to show you…"
He leans in slowly towards her.
"I cannot read your thoughts as you can read mine, but it's obvious how you feel about me. And I want you to know…."
This time, he leans in so close that she feels his breath on her skin.
"…That I feel the same.. about you."
And then he kisses her.