Disclaimer: Fruits Basket does not belong to me. It belongs to Takaya Natsuki. Please do not sue me; all I have is a rented apartment and two roommates. I do NOT get anything out of this, just the satisfaction of being able to write about the wonderful anime that Fruits Basket really is.
Tonight I climb.
I do this because it is your ritual, your way of life. I do this because I want to understand you.
But most of all, I do this because you are far away, and the night is cold, and I am alone.
Out through my window I begin, careful not to make a sound. I slowly inch towards the old ladder that I had propped up against the wall early this evening. Then, a tentative foot steps on the first rung, while a trembling hand grabs the next one. Right foot. Left foot. Right hand. Left hand. And on and on.
Halfway through, I stop to catch my breath. The roof seems awfully far for my short limbs to climb. But I close my eyes and imagine how you would nimbly leap from height to height in a flash of orange hair. You would not hesitate, I know. You would throw all caution to the wind, as you normally do, in a burst of passion that so defines you.
Finally, I heave myself up on the roof. I decide to sit here, near the edge, my legs dangling against the cool night air. Perhaps it is only fitting – I am who always at the edge of where you are, never in the comforting circle of company. Beneath me, the shingles are rough and harsh, biting into the skin under my skirt. But still I stay. I have endured enough of you to know that sitting on this edge is merely temporary isolation, to know that these shingles are not as harsh as the words that you sometimes throw callously at me.
And still I stay.
I know you don't mean to hurt me. I know that you are sorry that you cannot return the love that I readily give. At first I thought that it was just because you had gone on for so long without affection that you felt afraid of losing anything – or anyone – that you learned to care for. Or maybe, you were afraid to lose yourself to such an emotion, when you felt that you only had yourself to count on.
But I was wrong.
You cannot return my love because you have already given yours to someone else.
How do I know you love Tohru?
It was easy, actually. Your actions betray you. You dismiss her with an insensitive remark. You push her away more than you push me. You think you are fine without her, but once you've admitted it, you will realize that you can never truly leave her.
So ignore me when I say I want to marry you. Ignore me when I say I want to be the mother of your children. The truth is, Kyou, all I want is to make you smile, to make you look at me – just once – the same way you look at her.
What is it about rooftops that so captivate you? Is it the seclusion that they provide you, a refuge far from the confusion of our cursed lives? Is it the feeling of superiority that makes you believe that you are above everything and everyone?
Or is it just because you want to get away from me?
It pains me to admit that I can never compare to the woman you unwillingly chose to love. But I can never be like Tohru, nor do I long to be. I am content to love you like this, like now, in the best way I know how. To climb rooftops night after night, to sit where you should be.
Tonight the sky is a mystery to me, just as you are. I cannot make out the constellations that the books all point out. All I know is that the stars shine on, dead for billions of years, but illuminating the heavens and rooftops with a light that never fades.
Somewhere, you are sitting on a different roof and looking up at these same stars.
The cherry blossom tree stretches out its branches, as if in greeting. Carefully, I reach for the nearest branch, to steady myself before slowly beginning my descent. My vigil here tonight is over, and tomorrow, I will climb a little higher.
Then maybe someday, I will reach you.
Comments and constructive criticism are highly appreciated.