Time: 8:33 PM

So, where have I been? Where indeed. It's a long and sad story where I got wrapped up in things that weren't important, and forgot about everything else. I hope to get back into the writing groove, so be patient with me, and thank you to EVERYONE who has every commented on my work. It touches my heart!

*Disclaimer: Don't own Astroboy.

He sat in his room, staring at the ceiling, arms behind his head, lying on his bed. His mind was whirling. It had been two days. Two days since he had seen Cora and they were in the park together.

Astro closed his eyes, images replaying behind his eyelids.

Stupid programming, he thought bitterly. It just had to be programmed into him to remember images and replay them like a movie when he tried thinking about something.

He reached up to scratch his head, making sure not to mess up his gelled hair. He had done it so much as a kid, it was basically naturally pointed in two spikes now. But that didn't stop him from continuing his ritual every morning when he was getting dressed for the day.

He shifted himself on his back so he could tilt his head and look out the window at Metro City. It was still as beautiful as ever.

Smiling slyly to himself he got shot up off his bed and all in one motion, pushed the window open and jumped out, free falling.

Too bad gravity had no effect on him. Feeling the power run through his body, his rocket boosters fired up, and he shot out through the sky. Racing across the city, he grinned cheekily to himself. There was not one robot like him. He was strictly unique. Strictly Astro.

The power felt amazing. So much power. So many things he could do.

But that power had a price that came with the package. The one thing he wanted, the only thing that seemed to matter as he grew older, was what his emotions could only wish of wanting.

He soon found himself in the outskirts of the city, at a deserted park to which anyone rarely ever came to. This is where he always came when he was bothered by something, mostly Cora related. Walking to the edge of the city, where the thick metal bars signaled the edge of the floating metro city, he flickered his boosters and rose to the top of the bars, eventually sitting on the edge of the cliff-like surroundings.

Looking down at the surface, he felt a twang of remembrance of his time down there- well, the first time. He and Cora made sure they went down there on a daily basis to help rebuild a smaller city that the orphanage kids had decided they would do, instead of make the journey to the floating city above them.

He heaved a heavy sigh, his eyes running over the rubble below.

Why did it have to be so complicated? He had all the memories of Toby, but….lies were all they were. Why couldn't he have actually been Toby? That way his father would treat him like a real son, and….he could actually be worthy of someone to date Cora. She was an incredibly beautiful and popular girl after all. He couldn't count how many times she had been asked out in the past year, let alone got hit on whenever they went somewhere together. Sure, she was a year and a half older than him, but he honestly could deny his feelings for her.

His feelings. Those indeed were his downfall. He had all the power in the world, right inside his chest, but all the power in the world wouldn't….couldn't make him human enough that he could be with Cora.

Groaning, he brought his hands to his temple. There was a strange panging in his head, which humans would have diagnosed with a headache, but for a robot…he wasn't quite sure what was going on.

I must have a few wires rubbing up against each other. I'll have dad check it out later. Leaning backwards, he let himself fall to the ground only to twirl around at the last second to land on his feet.

Walking now, he decided he would walk home instead of taking the easy sky route. That way, he could walk by Cora's place and see what she was doing. He wasn't being stalker-ish, just curious. Besides, it's what they did most days, after she got out of school. Luckily, he was downloaded with the latest events, data, and research findings on a daily basis, so school was something he didn't even have to bother showing up to.

Yeah, lucky me, he snorted to himself, Instead, I just get to lay around and be surrounded by my thoughts. Lucky lucky me.

Coming up to Cora's street, his pace quickened a little, his chest resulting in the strange constriction he had been feeling the past couple of months. Eyes focusing, they landed on her car, which was snuggly tucked in the driveway. Perfect timing! She was home!

Instead of knocking on the door, he decided to save her the walk down the stairs and just knock on her upstairs window. Lifting himself off the ground, his boosters made little to no sound at all, and he ascended, a giddy feeling bubbling in his imaginary stomach.

Upon reaching the window, he lifted his hand to knock, but stopped mid rise, and stared in amazement. Cora was standing in front of the floor length mirror in her room, hands above her head, putting her long hair in a ponytail. A couple of bobby pins stuck out of the clutches of her perfectly curved mouth, and she reached down to grab a few loose strands that had tumbled around her shoulders.

Her dark hair contrasted so well against the pale skin shown by her gray tank top. Astro held his breath.


He couldn't help himself from staring at her like he was. Her beauty was so serene; it shouldn't exist. Just like he shouldn't exist.

He never did knock on her window. Instead, his hand fell to his side limply.

He shouldn't exist.

Even though his skin looked and felt like a human; he would never achieve the highest honor he wanted- to become one. And it was so much fun to be around Cora and have her as a friend. But it was torture knowing that he could never be more than that to her. He would have to force himself to sit tight and stand in the shadows someday when she decided to gain a boyfriend- the lucky bastard- and finally find a husband who would be perfect for her, and giver her children and not have super powers.

The anger welled up inside of him. Why did he have to be so…Astro? He would punch her brick wall right now, if not for the fact that he knew his hand would go right through it, and he would have to explain to her parents what had happened.

At that moment of anger and bitterness, he looked up to see Cora looking at him, her hair having been successfully put in a high ponytail. Her smile was wide, and her eyes twinkled like nothing he had ever seen. His chest constricted again, and then turned his head, angry at himself for feeling such things, as she opened the window and breathed his name.