This chapter is dedicated to Autumn Johnson and Amelia Shambaugh, whose lives were tragically ended exactly one week ago in a shooting in Ohio. You two will forever be in our hearts and memories.

"There is something beautiful about all scars of whatever nature. A scar means the hurt is over, the wound is closed and healed, done with."

- Harry Crews

Matthew stood at the doorstep for who knows how long before finally unlocking the door and stepping in. He kicked off his shoes silently; it almost sounded like no one was home.

His father was in the kitchen, resting after a long day of work. The moment Matthew stepped into the kitchen, father looked up from his newspapers (A local family's veteran son is returning home after a long and noble five years of service) and spoke.

"How was your day, Mattie?"

Matthew looked up, a little surprised and somewhat dazed. He let his backpack fall to the ground next to the kitchen table before grabbing a pear from the fruit bowl.

"Good?" his father pressed on.

Matthew cocked his head a little to signify that he wasn't sure of the answer. A good day or a bad day, he could never tell—every day had its sunshine and every day its raincloud. Every cloud with a silver lining. Wasn't that what they said? He vaguely wondered who came up with such a strange comparison. He imagined a cloud decked with diamonds, strutting across the sky, and he cracked a smile.

"Good," he said. His voice did not sound strange to him anymore. Nor did it sound like Alfred's. It rang loudly in the kitchen—it sounded like Matthew Williams Jones. "Today was fine. You?"

His father almost jolted in surprise, but he was too consumed with joy to express any shock. The smile on his face made everything worth it to Matthew. Maybe, for him, it was like a father's reaction when his first child says 'Daddy' for the first time. Matthew had died—in a way—for months, if not nearly a year, and now here he was again. He was the one breathing, heart beating, living again. And he would treasure every moment of it.

"It was fine. Quite normal," his father said, and Matthew relished it. A typical day was something he longed for, and for once—today—he finally made it. A spring day—where everything was alive, alive, alive. "Nothing out of the ordinary."

"Well, we are ordinary people, aren't we?" Matthew said as he cut the pear in half and handed one half to his father. His father took it, but didn't take his eyes off of his son. Matthew almost thought that his father looked a little proud, which he had to admit, was rather silly. But it made him happier nonetheless.

"What do you want for dinner?" his father asked. "Your mother will be home for dinner tonight, so I thought I might cook something special today."

Matthew unzipped his rucksack and extracted his homework books. He paused as he was about to pull out his mathematics textbook as he crunched on his pear.

"Salmon burger?" Matthew said. "Is that okay?"

"Sounds great," his father said. "If you're hungry, you can have a light snack or something."

"I'm fine. I need to do homework," Matthew said, hoisting his textbooks into his arms. "If you want any help making dinner, just holler for me."

"Will do, thanks," his father said. Matthew ascended the stairs to his bedroom and the conversation ended, just like that. But it was a conversation nonetheless, the longest he has ever had with his father. And if he took baby steps, maybe he would be comfortable enough to even talk about his feelings to his father. To apologize for never saying a word to him for weeks upon weeks. To no longer be afraid to tell the truth.

But that would be another day. Not today, but most certainly—yes, most definitely—another day.

Gilbert was nervous.

What a coward, he thought ruefully with a ironic smile. Too afraid of the truth?

No—he was no longer bound to fear anymore. He refused to be. Fear had caused him enough problems itself, and if he really wanted to have nothing to be afraid of anymore, he had to be willing to break from his shell—this shell that has been so stubborn and protective for who knows how long and that only one (Ah wait, two; he shouldn't—couldn't—forget about Arthur. It had been already an few odd months since Arthur and Gilbert spoke in the dead of night.) could ever crack.

He knew that there wasn't much point in keeping anything secret anymore. Besides, scars rarely disappeared, though they may fade into memories. They will always be a part of him, and he no longer wanted to keep every part of him a mystery that no one would know until he realized at the end of his life that he never let anyone truly know him.

But—perhaps he can blame it on human nature that he was so anxious. Telling the truth meant giving a part of him away, no matter how ugly it was, and he was afraid if it was rejected. He was afraid that if anyone saw this dark part of him, they would turn away.

He wasn't confident. That was the truth. He was certainly not comfortable with the idea. These scars embodied his cowardice, his pain, his fear, his secrecy, his distrustfulness, every flaw that made him up. He had hoped that if he just kept the sleeves over them, he could pretend he was a little closer to being perfect. But that wasn't who he was. He wasn't perfect and he knew it. Why should he lead others on to believe that?

"Do I hold it like this?"

Gilbert looked up quickly and snorted when Ludwig was trying to prop the violin up on his elbows. "How you reached that conclusion, I have no idea. Here—" He shifted the violin until it rested on Ludwig's shoulder and under his chin. "That's how you do it."

"I feel like you could get a terrible cramp in your neck or shoulders by this," lamented Ludwig.

"A little pain for some awesome music? I think that's a risk worth taking."

Ludwig tentatively poised the bow over the strings. When the strings barely touched, he winced at the scratching sound that erupted from the small instrument.

"I feel like I'm going to break this thing," Ludwig said.

"That's because you're so bulky," said Gilbert, smiling wryly. "It's times like these where fragility has an advantage, Mr. Incredible. Here, you're holding the bow wrong." He guided Ludwig's hand until the bow was positioned properly. "Try again. And make sure you don't move the bow in zig zags or anything. One straight line."

Ludwig played the violin as quietly as he could. A tremulous sigh escaped the violin's lips, like a graceful crane crooning to the moon. Gilbert pressed his lips together, almost a little too wary to smile in case it would scare the music away. Ludwig tried playing different notes by pressing down on the strings, but the strings immediately squawked reproachfully and closed their mouths.

"Not bad for a first try," Gilbert said. "Aren't you sorry you didn't learn to play violin and chose…cake baking?"

"Never. And you aren't either. You'd starve without me," Ludwig said quickly. Nowadays it felt as if he almost let the words just burst out of his mouth before he had time to think, just so he could buy time to converse with Gilbert more. To hear Gilbert just say a word to him with a smile on his face was something Ludwig was almost unused to, but held precious.

"Hey, it's five o'clock," Gilbert said, flipping open his cell phone. "Don't you have to go study for finals now?"

"Already five?" Ludwig said. "Shoot, I'm late…" He dragged his rucksack off of the coffee table and shoved on his shoes. "I'l be back by eight. It's Physics today, so it'll take a while."

"Don't stress yourself out that much, you still have about five days until finals week," drawled Gilbert.

"But I have six subjects to study for!" Ludwig said. "I can't cram!"

"Goody-two-shoes!" snorted Gilbert. Ludwig rolled his eyes and slung his rucksack over his shoulders. "Now go and take care of Feliciano, you good ol' father."

"I'm not acting like a father to him!" said Ludwig. "I'm just a friend."

"He's practically your family."

Ludwig let out a bit of an exasperated chuckle. "You're my family, idiot, no matter who comes along or what we do. I'll bring back dinner, all right?"

He searched through the tiny hanger next to the garage door for the car keys. Even though he was younger than Gilbert and learned to drive later than him, Father entrusted the family car to Ludwig due to Gilbert's haphazard manner of driving. He pressed the button to open the car door and was about to close the door behind him when a voice reached out to him.


The word spilled out of Gilbert's mouth before he had time to react, but he did not draw back with surprise or regret. Ludwig turned around, raising his eyebrows curiously.


"When you come back—er, at least, when you have the time," Gilbert said calmly. He was surprised he wasn't stuttering, but then again—he wasn't afraid. Not anymore.

Who had time in life to be afraid, anyway?

"When you have time, can we talk? About—something?" He tugged unconsciously on the hem of his jacket sleeve that masked his lightening scars.

"Sure, what's it about?" asked Ludwig.

"You agree to it before you even know what it's about?" quipped Gilbert.

"Well, if you want to talk about anything to me, I'll listen," Ludwig said simply.

The corner of Gilbert's lip tugged to form a crooked smile. "It's a long story. And a little personal, too."

Ludwig glanced at the time on his watch. It was already five ten by now, but he could just tell that Gilbert wanted to speak to him badly, as if he was finally breaking down the stone cage that he hid in, and who knows if Ludwig could stumble upon another chance like this? Feliciano would understand; besides, contrary to popular belief, Feliciano was quite adept at physics. He was a Renaissance man that no one really expected.

"I have time now," said Ludwig.

"…Yeah, I don't really know how to squeeze this into five minutes length, though."

"No, that's not what I meant," Ludwig said, chuckling. "I meant, I'm not going to go study now."

"Whoa, hold it," Gilbert said. "Don't change your whole schedule of life according to me. I thought you were stressed out about physics. Be sensible."

"I am. There are five more days until exam week, right?" He closed the garage door and returned the key to its rightful place. "Besides, it's physics. I'm not that terrible at the subject."

Gilbert chewed on his lip, unsure of whether to be relieved or wary for Ludwig's grade's sake. But he didn't—or realistically, he couldn't—stop Ludwig from dropping his rucksack on the ground and returning to the living room they were originally in, waiting—hoping—expectantly. Gilbert sat down next to him on the couch, his heart jittering.

They were quiet for a while, waiting for the other to ease their way into the conversation. However, Ludwig didn't even know what the conversation was about and Gilbert didn't even know how to bring it up. All of a sudden the fears of rejection nearly paralyzed him, but Gilbert took a breath and relaxed. Ludwig was family no matter what either of them did. Ludwig wouldn't turn away.

He finally pulled the sleeve up, revealing his arm riddled with secrets. Ludwig did not cry out or draw back in shock or disgust. Instead, he gently took Gilbert's arm, running a thumb across the faults. He looked up with imploring eyes, but they did not beg. They waited for him.

"Why?" was all he said with a quiet but calm voice.

Gilbert took in a deep breath.

"Let me tell you about it."

"It ain't biting."

"You aren't even trying, Lovino."

Deep in the nature park near the edge of town, two identical boys with auburn hair sat on the wooden bridge that stretched across a creek, their thin legs dangling over the water and their toes barely skimming the bubbling surface. One of them held a very thin stick with a long red thread tied to the end, tickling the water with a scrap of meat tied to the other end. The other was lying on his back, his arms folded underneath his head and breathing in the fresh scents of summer.

"Not my fault my fishing pole broke."

"I did not do it on purpose."

"Still broke it."

The younger brother props himself up on his elbows, exasperatedly blowing his single curl out of his face. The gentle current drags the meat around, and whatever tiny fishes waddled through the water was steering clear from the trap.

"Even if you had a normal fishing pole you wouldn't catch anything."

The elder shot a glare over his shoulder before flicking ground beef in his brother's face. The younger broke into a grin before wiping the raw meat off of his collar and smearing it on the back of his brother's shirt. They squabbled playfully on the bridge, dirtying themselves with anything possible from the bait to the dirt speckling the bridge. Meanwhile, a guppy nibbled on the meat before darting away.

"Can you believe it, Lovi?" he said, slapping back on his summer hat. "It's finally summer holiday. We're done with yet another school year!"

Lovino dragged the meat around in the water. "It took ages."

Feliciano smiled and edged closer to Lovino. Lovino glowered at his stubbornly fruitless fishing pole before lifting it out of the water.

"How are you feeling?" Feliciano asked.

"Fine." It was cursory as usual, but there was at least no anger embedded in his voice. Feliciano cocked his head a little.

"You've been talking more as school began to end."

"Are you complaining?"

"No, no!" Feliciano waved his hands frantically. "I'm…it makes me happy. Really happy." He lowered his hands, his face softening. "Are you happy?"

Lovino shrugged. "Happy I got out of the Music Theory final alive, that's for sure."

"You know what I mean, Lovi."

Lovino stole a glance at Feliciano before focusing on tying a larger morsel of meatball onto the string. "Ask me this later, can't you?"

Feliciano recoiled slightly, his eyes saddening. "You aren't happy?"

"I'm content and yet I'm not, you know?" Lovino said brashly. "I mean, I'm not angry or anything, but I know not everything's all right."

"Are you still worried about your trigonometry final?"

"That's not what I'm talking about, idiot," Lovino said. He lowered the fishing rod. "Look at us, Feli. How old are we now, eighteen? We've grown up—we've grown older. Hell, we graduated from high school. Can you believe that? We're university students now. We're going our separate ways—we might not see any of these people again. We're going to grow up and have lives—what we always described as our futures will be our reality. We're going to marry a pretty lady, raise families, and—and live."

He threw his hands in the air, nearly whacking Feliciano in the face with raw meat. "We're living in the outside world now. We aren't going to be protected by parents or have perfectly followed rules like in high school anymore. What we've been doing for the past eighteen years—sure, we were living, but that ends. We're going into something that will be with us for the rest of our days. We can act like kids all we want, but now we're grown up, and we can't change that. We've got to stand on our own two feet."

He lowered his hands resignedly, the fishing rod clanking on the wood bridge. He stared off into the distance, almost ashamed of what else would come out of his mouth, but daring to say it.

"And I guess sometimes I think, gee, Jones isn't ever going to see this," he said. There wasn't sadness in his voice, or resentment, or bitterness. Calm, calm acceptance.

"And he knew it too," said Lovino. Feliciano did not nod condescendingly or make any move to comfort or pity Lovino. He understood too, that Lovino was not saddened, but reflective. "He knew it when he left. Didn't he care about what was on the other side of the wall, though? Like, how life could've ran after high school? Maybe things change. Maybe the age of miracles returns—who knows?"

A tawny swift sang on a lofty tree branch, gazing down at the two brothers with pearly black eyes. Somewhere in the distance its companion responds with a twirling twitter.

"The more time passes, the more we sort of realize how much time we could have had with him around but now we can't," said Lovino. "He knew that, didn't he? That we'd notice?"

The swift flows down to the berry brush beneath the branches and pecks hungrily at the knot of magenta berries. In the water, a cluster of fish gathered at their feet, nibbling at their toes.

"I guess it just makes me wonder…where he would be right now, if he was still around," said Lovino casually. "Would he be partying it up after we've graduated? Would he have passed the English final? Would he have been with us right now, fishing with this—crappy—fishing rod?"

"Does it make you sad?" asked Feliciano.

Lovino looked at his brother and shook his head. "There's no point anymore. It's done. I'm not sad or angry or any of that. I just…wonder, now."

He craned his neck so that he faced the sky, where a net of tree branches sieved the sunlight. Something small falls into the water with a velvety plop, but it is enough to send the swift taking wing and flying off into the mess of leaves. The fish scatter as well, diving behind pebbles and fallen branches.

"Besides," said Lovino. "I think he's happy, now. At least, I don't think he's sad anymore, or angry, or disappointed. He did what he wanted to do, and that was his choice, whether he thought of the future or not. And I guess if he made it, that's what he wanted."

Lovino drew his feet out of the water and crossed his legs Indian-style. "And we have our futures to think of too, right? Yeah, we shouldn't forget him, but…well, we shouldn't forget us either."

Feliciano gently pushed himself off of the bridge and into the stream. The water only came up to his calves and didn't come near wetting his shorts. Every color seemed so vivid—the thousands of shades of green, the deep blue of the sky that rivaled any eye, the rich brown of the soil, and the beauty of every flower and leaf in magnificent hues. If he had lived in a world of white, could he even imagine—no, fathom—such miracles? How could Earth be so lucky to be graced with such wonders?

He closed his eyes.

He relished the sensation of the mud between his toes, the cool water tickling his skin, the wind's fingers and the sunlight drenching him. The smell of wild trees and water, the sound of the trickling stream and the distant greetings of birds. He didn't need a roller coaster or a parachute to remind himself how incredibly alive he was. To think—that in those months while they were in shock and fear of death, they had completely forgotten that they themselves were alive.

What a strange revelation: They were alive.

And every second was never wasted.

"Where'd all the fish go?" said Lovino.

It was in the dead of night, and no one was supposed to be there.

But they were.

The parking lot was lined with flashlights and a scented candle or two, and many, many cell phone and iPods glowing with weak fluorescent light. The air was thick and warm with summer, and it was far from quiet. People were chatting, gasping, reminiscing together, underneath the stars. There weren't too many people, but neither were there too little.

It started off with only Arthur and Matthew, who decided to meet together on this evening to talk and reminisce. Then somehow Gilbert got a whiff of what was going on and informed Ludwig, who was with Kiku at the time, who told Yao, Mei, and Feliciano, who dragged along Lovino, who mentioned it to Antonio, who brought Bella and her older brother, who told a computer whiz Eduard, who made it a Facebook event and fished tens more people. The shock Matthew and Arthur had when they realized their small get-together bloomed into a community news was almost amusing. But that's what communities do.

One of them Arthur recognized, but he didn't know him. He hesitated at first, unsure of whether or not it was smart to approach him, but in the end he didn't have to be the one to make the first move. The person turned and spotted Arthur, and before Arthur could even digest what was going on, the person was making his way toward him.

"Aren't you the one who started this event?" he asked.

"No, it was actually—what's his name again?—Eduard, from my school," said Arthur, searching his face. It was a little different from the last time he saw it, a little darker and a little older, but it was the same nonetheless. "Er—I'm Arthur Kirkland, pleasure to meet you."

"Makisig Patanindagat," said Makisig, taking Arthur's hand and shaking it.

"It's great to see you here," Arthur said, and he meant every word of it.

"Did you know Alfred?" asked Makisig.

Arthur thought about it for a while before shaking his head. "No, unfortunately. But my classmates told me a lot of stories."

Makisig nodded understandingly, and they resumed in quiet, watching everyone else converse with a flashlight or candle in their hands. Arthur licked his dry lips, dying to make conversation with the person whom he had thought of until now as a phantom, someone he saw but never actually meet, until Makisig beat him to it.

"He was a nice guy, Alfred," Makisig murmured, gazing at the people around him. Arthur shot a curious glance at Makisig from the corner of his eyes, but did not interrupt. "I wasn't friends with him, but he was a nice guy."

"Was he?" Arthur said lightly.

Makisig shrugged a shoulder and nodded. "I can't say I liked him when I knew him," he said bluntly. "Not at all. But in the end he was never a bad guy. He just made bad choices."

"Did you hate him?" The words were so childish and so tactless, but Arthur couldn't help it. He just wanted to know.

Makisig raised his eyebrows. "Hate him? Hate's such a strong word, I don't even want to use it jokingly." He exhaled deeply and stuck his hands into his pockets. "I hated the things he did, the things he said, and sometimes the things he believed. But I never hated him." He bit the corner of his lip and sighed. "I wish he knew that, too."

Arthur wanted nothing more than to ask Makisig if in the end, he took Alfred's apology. But he didn't need to—he could tell already.

And somewhere along the way, someone brought a box with them.

"I don't really know why I brought it," admitted Kiku, holding it up. "But I thought that…well, it's a parking lot with no cars, that's a lot of space to draw or anything."

It was a plastic box of sidewalk chalk, with fat pieces of pastel-colored chalk scattered inside. Arthur peeled the lid off the box and peered in it.

"There are only seven pieces, though," Kiku said apologetically. "It's rather old, and the chalk is already used up a bit."

Arthur turned a piece of light blue chalk in his hand, a smile on his face. "No, it's fine. It's completely fine. This can work."

"What can work?" Matthew asked.

"The chalk," said Arthur noncommittally.

Matthew furrowed his eyebrows slightly. "We're technically not part of the school anymore. Are we allowed to vandalize their pavement?"

Feliciano laughed. "It's summer! What do we have to worry about anymore?"

Toris craned his neck to the sky, where specks of hazy stars clouded the black. "July the fourth," he said in a faraway voice. "His favourite date."

Ivan squeezed Toris's shoulder gently. Toris did not turn away or show any fear, for he had none.

"I think," Arthur said, replacing the chalk, "that everyone ought to have a go with the chalk. It'll be a release. It'll be a relief."

"What'll we do with it?" asked Antonio.

"Anything. Everything. It's his birthday, isn't it? Wouldn't he love to have a party where we all just act like kids?"

"Be a little smarter, Artie," Gilbert said. "We've got as many as…as fifty people out here. How are seven pieces of stubby chalk going to last us all through the night?"

"Aren't you willing to take that great leap of faith?" Arthur said with a grin. "We'll manage. We could drive somewhere and buy more, if we have money—if we want to. But I think we can do it."

Gilbert raised an eyebrow skeptically, but Arthur did not back down. He held it up higher to Gilbert's eyes.

"Can't we?"

Gilbert let out a feigned exasperated sigh and laughed. "Do it. If it works, I'll be an earthworm. But go ahead and try."

And suddenly, the whole parking lot exploded in color.

Arthur watched as his classmates, his neighbors and friends, and people he didn't even know share the pieces of chalk with each other as they scrawled on the black rough pavement. Some drew fascinating artwork of flowers, moons and stars, any landscape imaginable. Some drew faces that resembled black and white photographs—faces so inviting but so long gone, so far away.

And many wrote.

Wrote letters, words, poems, confessions, everything in chalky color. Arthur watched as people crouched on the ground and wrote a message to Alfred in the black rock before passing it to someone else. The chalk grew smaller and smaller, but out of them came thousands of truths, emotions, and expressions.

I wish I knew what you were thinking—

—I sometimes forget that you're dead and it shocks me all over again—

—Was it my fault?—

—Why didn't you talk to me?—

—Nothing's been the same—

—I wish I could have told you how much you meant to me before—

—I have a hard time writing this, but I have to tell you now instead of never—

—I wish I knew you better—

—I think about you all the time—

—Why did we have to grow apart?—

—There are so many things I want to say to you, that you could have done, that you could have seen but it's too late because you're GONE

But as the chalk was passed and as time passed, the blacktop was barely visible beneath the powdery words that were engraved in everyone's hearts. Reading them made Arthur's eyes sear and his throat tighten, and yet he was smiling, smiling so hard that it hurt, because he felt like he ran a marathon. They did it—yes—it is done. They made it.

—I just want to let you know that you were always amazing, always a smile and full of laughter that made me so happy every day—

—You have no idea how much you meant to me so let me tell you now—

—Do you remember that time we went to homecoming together?—

—I don't know you too well but what I'll remember forever about you is your smile—

—Your life is so precious to us and we'll always remember you—

—We'll see each other again, so get ready, okay?—

A flurry of color, of hope, of redemption just whirled around them, engulfing them like spring, like renewal and a fresh page to write on. This was their hope. This was their survival.

—I value my family even more now—

—I've stopped taking people for granted—

—I want to help people more now—

—I've stopped cutting—

—I found my faith again—

I forgave you

And that was it. He was crying. Arthur was crying, but he was so happy that the tears outlined his lips stretched so wide in a smile. Everyone around him was healing—he saw Toris and Ivan together by the candlelight, their heads bowed and eyes closed in a midnight prayer. Lovino was hugging Antonio, but their eyes were glittering with stars instead of tears. Makisig passed the white chalk to Kiku, who then passed it to another person, to another, to another. And Arthur was sobbing and he didn't even know why, as someone held him tight and this someone Arthur didn't even know who they were, but neither of them cared.

And even the sky began to cry.

Rain first fell like snowflakes, gently and sparingly. Then, without warning, it came in bucketfuls, as if they were stuck underneath the Niagara. Everyone screamed and whooped and laughed as they were drenched head to toe with rainwater. The candles were snuffed out and the electronics were hastily stowed away before they could malfunction. They danced in the stars, ran barefoot, lifted their hands to the sky and yelled gibberish. They were children of the world, still hurting but now healing. They were still kids.

As the rain grew heavier, everyone linked hands so that no one would be lost in the night. They formed a long chain that encircled the parking lot so that no one would accidentally slip or wander off into the streets. The streetlight cast a dim amber glow on their heads like a fire. Everyone's hands were ashy with chalk, pressed together and letting the rain wipe away their tears.

"Look!" yelled out Antonio. "Look, the rain! It's washing away all our chalk!"

"That's okay!" laughed Feliciano, his voice loud above the rain. "That's okay! That just means Alfred already read it all!"

They squeezed each other's hands tighter, watching as the heavens wiped away their messages and gave them a fresh, clean slate. Some people sang, others horseplayed, somewhere in the corner they were dancing. They were all alive.

Arthur discreetly slipped his hand out of the link and into his pocket. He pinched between his fingers a very meager piece of yellow chalk. He was surprised there was any chalk left, but somehow the seven made it through everyone. Everyone except him.

He bent down to the ground. No one really noticed. He held the chalk tight in his hand, making sure the rain would not dissolve what little chalk he had left. What could he say to Alfred? He looked up at the sky, raindrops streaking his face and hair until it clung to his skull. The whoops and voices of his friends surrounded him and it sounded like a song, almost. It sounded like hope.

He hovered over a small patch of pavement so that he could quickly scratch the chalk. In small words, he etched his last words into the ground before the piece of chalk cracked in his fingers and disappeared into grit.

Thank you.

Seven pieces of chalk.

Ordinary children.

Whispered memories in the rain.

Your life dreams are shattered

You're gone away
We've cried here for hours
And the hours turn to days

We know you regret this
Leaving us here
With portraits and memories
That we've held so dear

When I hear your name, it's not the same
No matter what they say, I'm not okay
And we started at zero and went different ways
Now we're all out here wasting away

And if we started at zero
Then how did things change?
It seems like just yesterday
We were the same

It's been three months since you left us
So far nothing's been the same
And my question without answer
Is am I the one to blame?

And he was such a good description
Of a favored future man
He spoke well of other people
And they said the same for him

When I hear your name, it's not the same
No matter what they say, I'm not okay
And we started at zero and went different ways
Now we're all out here wasting away

And if we started at zero
Then how did things change?
Feels like just yesterday
We were the same, we were the same

And we started at zero
And went different ways
Now we're all out here
Wasting away, wasting away
Wasting away, wasting away

And we started at zero
And went different ways
Now we're all out here wasting away

And if we started at zero
Then how did things change?
Seems like just yesterday
We were the same
We were the same
We were the same

-Hawk Nelson, 'Zero'