Disclaimer: MKR is not mine.
The Sun was a huge star whose light illuminated Earth and other planets of the Solar System. Its warmth coaxed the animals and human beings to leave the deep sleep they were in and to face a new bright day. It also provoked the water to keep flowing in its liquid form, the trees to keep producing organic material and to keep producing oxygen to the planet, so necessary to life. Water, oxygen and food. Was it possible that a mere shining star could do so much? Did their lives depend on a star?
Watching the sun set with eyes down cast, Fuu sat on top of a green hill, her long legs crossed beneath her. Touching the humid grass with her fingers, moistering them with the morning dew that had not dried yet with the sunlight, she wondered what people usually did at that hour. They were probably drinking tea or watching television, she thought wistfully.
"A penny for your thoughts," a husky voice whispered beside her. She smiled and turned to Eagle, studying his handsome and fragile features. They truly looked alike, with their light skin and bone structures. The colour of his hair, though, was different, a pale blond, almost considered silver. She coughed, pulling that thought out of her mind.
"What should we do now?" she asked, resting her head on his shoulder. He played with her hair, tossing it around, feeling its silky texture before answering.
"I don't know; maybe we could check people around?" he suggested. She nodded her head, yet stayed in the same position, marveling as the time passed, as the calm breeze blew by, the tranquility of the scenery forever imprinted in her mind. The yellow and orange leaves that had fallen on the green soil had taken off, flying and spreading throughout the landscape, almost as if their journey on Earth was not finished yet; they still had something else to accomplish.
He embraced her, sneaking his arms around her shoulders and pulling her against his chest, smelling her sweet perfume of innocence. She hugged him back, unsure arms touching the skin of his neck and staying there.
"Ready?" he asked, while he pulled her away. She watched him with curious eyes, but nodded all the same. He stood up and offered a hand to her, which she accepted without thinking twice. As their fingers entwined, they walked down the hill alone, the greenery soothing their hearts and their doubts. Fuu wondered whether this beauty would remain after the fatidic year, for the planet's fate was upon their hands.
Could she bear the knowledge of the fact that she could be the responsible for the extinction of such a wonderful place? Her heart thumped loudly in her ribcage, and she sighed to herself. If it depended on her heart, she would perish with the planet. Now, her mind... it was something else.
Ferio banged his head against his literature book, sighing to himself as he read the same paragraph again. It was somewhat frustrating to be able to understand a complicated poem, yet not understand why so many romantic poets killed themselves. They thought that death was a form of escaping from the real and horrendous world.
Okay, he could understand the horrendous part. Now, why death? Why not gather enough courage and face the harsh reality? Yes, it would be harder, and yes, we would all die in the end, but why not enjoy what life has to offer? He scratched his head, eyeing the book with tired eyes.
Sighing and tossing his dark bangs away from his eyes, he stood up and left the study room, not before collecting his various books which were lying innocently on the table. Grabbing them in a quick swift motion, he tossed them into his bag and left the quiet room.
He opened the cold metal door and breathed in deeply, expanding his chest with the motion. The air smelled of adventure, a strange wave of adrenaline pumping through his veins. He could feel it – something incredible would happen that day. He tilted his head to the side, pondering over the subject.
His stomach grumbled and he smiled sheepishly to the people who were around him, not that they had payed any attention to the grumble provoked by his hungry body. They were, actually, concentrated on the day, on their work, and on their lives. A single foreign life was not important to their existence, to their happiness.
Ferio shrugged and decided to walk around, hand in his pockets and a bag slung around his shoulders. He looked like he cared for nothing in the world, as if he would not miss a thing were he to die that day or the next. Somehow, he looked like an outast with his odd green hair and exotic golden eyes. He looked like he belonged nowhere, though deep in his soul, he wanted to belong to a special place, or maybe to a special person. He wanted to feel needed, loved. Essential.
His legs took him to the Central Market, where people could buy the best food from the entire city. People of various ages were there, choosing and groping fruits, screaming at the vendors for daring to sell something so expensive. A myriad of colours greeted his eyes, the different brands of clothes mixed with the different human features and faces making the scene almost unreal. It was almost a rainbow made of living creatures, moving creatures who did not notice the wonders of life. The different colours, instead of being easily detected, were all mixed up, like a cauldron and the colours, the secret ingredients.
Some fruits had fallen from their original place, and after being stepped on, they had lost their original form, consisting now of a dark and smelly juice. No one seemed to care how dirty the place looked – people kept walking around, screaming, nodding and shaking their heads – nor how they dirtied the place. They kept throwing litter on the ground – paper, rotten food, empty and useless wooden boxes.
The day was still warm, considering the fact that it was already halt past four. The sky had lost some of its blue colour; it was getting redder and yellower, the colours of a sweet tropical fruit named mango. He licked his lips at the thought, patting his belly with certain anxiousness.
Mangoes... it reminded him of warmth, of friendliness and of passion. The image of sand and clear blue ocean, whose waves hit the coast, made him feel warm inside. Ah, how he wished to be in a warm place, to bask in the sunlight, to what life has to offer, so different from those weird romantic poets. No, he would never give up life, it was too precious to be thrown away. He could feel life, and that was enough for him. Did it matter that he belonged to nowhere?
A small child walked to his side and tugged at his pants. He looked down and saw a small girl looking hopefully at him, her eyes so full of that known liquid called tears. She sniffed and rubbed a small hand against her eyes.
"I'm lost," she whispered, her voice almost lost to his ears. She sniffed once again, looking around her, trying to discover what a strange world she was in. Those giants were everywhere; where was her mommy?
Ferio knelt down beside her and patted her hand, smiling as gently as possible, caressing her hair with light fingers. "Don't worry, I'm sure we'll find her," he assured her. He stood up and looked around, frowning as the task seemed almost impossible. There were so many women!
He stared down at the child and sighed inwardly, running a hand through his hair. What a bad luck, he murmured to himself. He scratched his head, opened his bag and took out some candies he had bought earlier. He offered them to her, and when she smiled and took them with one single grasp, he laughed to himself.
He patted her head and offered his hand, this time, without any candy. She pouted, crossed her arms over her chest and pretended to ignore him, her tears already forgotten. With the corners of her eyes, she gazed at the bare hand, and kept pouting. Eventually, not without some inner protest, she placed her tiny hand in his. Ferio held her hand securedly inside his palm, protecting that fragile being.
He looked at his wristwatch and widened his eyes, for it was getting late. A cold wind blew by and the girl shivered, her rosy lips trembling like a dry leaf almost falling to the ground. He looked around. The market was still in full swing, they would never find her mother. What to do?
The girl shivered again, and Ferio knelt down and after motioning for her to embrace him by the neck, he stood up, with a grinning child hanging around his neck. He secured her with his arms, and when they were done, Ferio started walking to a cafeteria. His stomach grumbled again.
"Are you hungry?" he asked her. She nodded, her long brown hair flailing around and hitting his face. He closed his eyes, protecting himself from the wild tresses. She giggled.
"What is it?" he asked, baffled that a girl was laughing at him. Her eyes gained a new colour, a new luminosity that made her look prettier than usual. She raised her hand and pointed at a person behind Ferio. He sighed.
"Don't point at people, it's rude," he preached her, turning around and opening his mouth to apology. His eyes widened as the girl in front of him smiled in greeting. She lifted one hand and waved at them.
"Hi," she said, her voice as silky as the finest wine. He gulped. She was beautiful, her golden locks and green eyes entrancing him immediately. He gulped again, blinking rapidly, as if wondering whether she was an illusion or not. She remained at her spot.
"Hi, I'm Hanako and you?" the little girl asked. The strange girl smiled, tilted her head to the
side, which made Ferio's heart skip a beat – she looked lovely like that – and told them her name. Fuu.
Hanako frowned and scratched her eyes, and suddenly, her mouth formed a big 'o' and she screamed, "you're an angel!", her voice as eager as ever. She loosened her grip around Ferio's neck and clasped her hands together. Luckly enough, Ferio had not stopped holding Hanako, and so, she did not fell.
"Oh really?" Fuu said, winking at the girl. Hanako giggled some more.
"Would you like to eat something with us?" Ferio asked, opening the glass doors, walking to an empty table. He pointed to the empty chair beside him with his head. She bit her bottom lip, deciding on what to do. She ran a hand through her golden hair and sighed. She walked to his side and pulled a chair and sat down. He grinned.
"I'm Ferio, by the way," and outstretched his right hand, just like the gaijin way of greeting people. She looked at his hand, a puzzled look written across her face, and looked at Hanako, who also had the same clueless expression. He grinned. They looked so naive!
"You should shake my hand," he advised them. Fuu watched him and then stared back at the hand. She touched his hand, watching for any danger. When she saw that it was harmless, she shook it with force, almost pulling his hand off. Hanako laughed loudly, making the people turn around and stare at those odd people.
A waitress arrived quickly at their side, a notepad in hand and a pen between her agile fingers. She smiled at the three of them, her red lips turned upwards in greeting. She winked at Ferio, which made him blush a crimson red. He cleared his throat.
"I'd like a hamburger and a coke. What about you, girls?" he asked, turning his attention to them. Hanako widened her eyes in anticipation and demanded ice-cream, even though the day was not very hot. She did not care about that small detail.
Fuu shook her head.
The waitress left, not before leaving a note in front of Ferio. He looked at the message, blushed and crushed it into a ball. Hanako's eyes glinted with mischief. Could she truly be that young and naive?
"You have a girlfried!" Hanako screamed, lifting her arms in the air. Ferio stood up and moved to her side, pulling her limbs down with one hand, while the other was busy trying to cover her mouth. Yet, it was futile; sneakers could be heard from the back of the cafeteria.
Sighing in defeat, Ferio returned to his seat, slumping in his chair. It was not his day. He turned his head and observed the people around him, the usual customers drinking a cup of coffee and reading the newspaper. Some men had their ties loosened around their necks, the exposed skin as white as snow.
A man settled the newspaper down and rubbed his eyes, shaking his head to the right and to the left, cracking some sore joints in his muscles. He yawned, slapped his cheek, not that hard but leaving a red mark behind, and stood up. He took out some notes from his wallet, and after placing them on the table, he left. No one noticed his absence. He was a no-one.
A gentle hand rested on Ferio's shoulder. He watched Fuu as she smiled and pointed to Hanako. She was pouting and frowning. Her tiny fist were punching the table.
"I want ice-cream!" she declared. Ferio sighed. Where was the waitress? As soon as he mouthed that question in his mind – Fuu secretly smiled to herself – the girl appeared, a silver tray on one single hand. Hanako watched the girl speechless.
She placed the ice-cream in front of Hanako, who suddenly revived and started to eat her dessert with gusto. Brown chips quickly dirtied her once clean face, and Fuu cleaned her with a white handkerchief that had been lying on the table. She rubbed the child's skin carefully, not applying too much pressure.
Ferio eyed the hamburger and started eating as well. The taste of meat immediately coaxed him to dream land, and he closed his eyes in delight. He chew the sandwich slowly, marveling as the taste infiltrated and spread through his system. The soft texture, the salty fragrance, the raw feeling of meat against his tongue...
Fuu watched them eat with admiration. Their faces showed so many emotions that confused her, yet, one was of pure pleasure. They looked like what the book had described! She rested her chin on her palm and eyed them with some jealousy, though she could not name the feeling. She had never felt that before. She looked at the dark liquid filling the transparent glass and decided that human food could not damage her body.
Drinking some of it, she felt disappointment seep in her heart, instead of the sweet taste of soft drink. She placed the glass in front of Ferio. She stared at the liquid for some time, displeased with the fact. She wanted to know what it tasted like. Was it as silky as wine? Or maybe as rough as honey, though as sweet as a kiss? She pursed her lips.
"You didn't like it?" Ferio asked, eyeing the soft drink with dubious eyes. He grasped it with his hand and gulped some of it, licking his lips afterwards. "It's very good. You thought it was too sweet?" he asked again. Her cheeks reddened slightly, making her look healthier. He smiled.
"No, I thought it was... tasteless," she answered with finality, though she felt somewhat guilty with her response. She turned to Hanako, who had finished her dessert and was cleaning her mouth with a napkin. She grinned at Fuu.
"It was good!" she claimed happily, her dirty teeth shining as she smiled. Fuu patted her head, adjusted her shirt collar, and placed the empty plate with remnants of chocolate nearer to the centre of the table. The waitress arrived and took the empty plates, and soon after, left the table, not before sending Fuu a curious look. Something sparkled in her eyes, a certain fire consuming her soul. Fuu shuddered slightly, rubbing her arms carefully.
"Are you cold?" Ferio asked, taking off his black blouse and handing it to her. Fuu stared at the object for some minutes, her fingers resting quietly on her lap, not moving at all. Ferio offered it again. She shook her head, and told him that she was not cold. She was just feeling nervous, anxious.
The three left the cafeteria, satisfied with the world when a scream pierced the quietness that had settled after their departure. Ferio turned his head as the figure of a young woman with red hair and deep blue eyes ran in their direction, her face twisted in worry, that is, until she saw Hanako.
She was carrying a bag full of vegetables, her face wet with the sweat, Her eyes had lost their luminosity when she had discovered the disappearence of her daughter, yet, it had returned upon her sight. The fear that had been gripping her heart suddenly left, and she ran to her side as fast as possible. She shook with anticipation and sank to the ground, bringing her to her chest, hugging her with all her might. Her fingers sank deep within the girl's clothes.
She kissed her forehead, her cheeks, and traced her arms and face with shaky fingers. Some time later, she sighed in relief, kissing her daughter once more and bowing to Ferio, who bowed back. She marveled at the influence the girl had on her. How the girl had almost killed her with fright! She hugged her once more, this time, tighter. She was afraid of losing her again.
Fuu watched the scene with love, marveling at the exchange of loving gestures. The mysteriousness rested on those two women, a young and an old one. They held such a relationship that she could not describe with words, only feel with her soul. She placed her hand on her chest, smiling at them.
"Thank you, I am deeply in debt," the mother said. She bowed and took Hanako's hand in hers, and mother and daughter left the hectic place, an aura of true and restored happiness hanging over their heads.
"I need to go as well," Fuu replied, waving to Ferio and walking down the road. Ferio watched her back with eyes full of emotion. The image of Hanako meeting her mother forever imprinted in his mind. He cleared his thorat.
"Will we meet again?" he asked. Fuu stopped and turned around, a dazzling smile plastered on her face.
"Only God knows," she answered back and left him. Her figure slowly disappeared as it reached far away, turning into a dark spot until it got foggy and forever disappeared. He sighed and walked in the opposite direction.
Would they meet again? Perhaps.
Only future can tell. Or maybe God as well?