. . .c h a s m. . .

He saw a couple in front of the Hachiko statue. The boy had his arms around her waist, her back to him. She was looking desperately, with devastating hope in her eyes, up at the statue, wishing, praying, willing.

He came over to them, walking in front of the girl. She couldn't see him, of course. No one could. But he felt a dangerous need for her to look at him, to see him. He just did. He didn't know why. It scared the living hell out of him.

He found himself reaching out to touch her cheek. If he was alive, he never would have dared to touch a girl this way. But right now, it felt completely natural. He didn't feel out of place at all as his palm cupped her face.

She gasped, flinching backward. The guy's arms tightened around her.

"Babe, what's wrong?" He looked worried.

She shook her head quickly, searching with her eyes over him, over the air. "Nothing, nothing, just thought got a chill." She smiled up at him. "Hey, can you do me a favor?"

He relaxed. "O' course."

"Get me a hot dog? Please?" She gave him a charming smile.

Neku's eyes widened.

The guy sighed. "You're gonna make me walk that far?"

He looked down at the confirming smile on her face.

He huffed. "Right. Be right back, then."

"Thanks bunches!" She waved at him. Once he was out of sight, she turned solemn.

Hesitantly, she reached her hand out toward the direction that he touched her. She didn't say anything. He stared at her hand. He looked back up to her face, to her eyes.

They weren't different. Not at all. He took in a breath and stretched out his hand.

He felt her warmth. He curled his fingers around her hand, only to have it seep through.

He watched her blink, ready for her to pull away. But she didn't.

She stuttered rapidly. "N-Neku…I-is that-is that really-," she didn't finish.

She fished out Mr. Mew. He could've sworn his heart stopped.

She opened her mouth, but closed it. She knew he knew.

He couldn't do anything about it, and it almost killed him. If she only knew how close he was to winning…

He reached out his hand again, touching her cheek, slowly caressing her new—old—face.

It made him feel odder than odd, but he could never be extremely sure if he would ever see her again. In case he-

She put her hand on her cheek, her hand seeping perfectly with his.

And that's how they stayed, her looking directly through his soul, even if she didn't realize. He memorized every curve of her face, every strand of hair, every freckle.

And he hoped that this one, long touch would tell her everything that he carried in his heart, that he begrudgingly admitted when he knew it was her.

And when he felt the presence of that guy nearing closer and closer, he edged, he leaned, he fell.

She fell back.

When it was over, he watched her take the food with a fake smile, and one more glance his way.

He felt his heart tear away and follow her retreating back. He couldn't help but fall to his knees from the explosion in his chest.

And from that moment on, he knew there wasn't a chance in hell that he would lose.

He'd be damned if he let her walk away from him again.

a/n: I think I wrote this sometime last year. But I had to post it, because NekuxShiki is cute. :) And I thought a lost moment between them was deserved, throughout everything they had to go through.

reviews are love.