A/N: This one just kinda wrote itself, I dunno what happened. I only have a vague idea of how people become uni profs, so I'm sorry if it's not accurate.

Disclaimer: No, I do not own them.

The Road Not Taken

Akiyama Shinichi's life is set. He has just finished his graduate degree in English and because of his genius, hard work, and luck, he has been hired as a contract instructor at his university with the possibility of his position becoming permanent should he pass his end of year review, thereby ensuring him a prestigious and relatively stable career. Perhaps it is not the best use of his intellect, but English is his passion, so he doesn't mind.

He thinks back to his first year of university when he had to select a major between English or criminal psychology. Both had interested him and he just couldn't decide so, literally by the flip of a coin, he had gone with English and never looked back. He is content with the decision he had made, more than content in fact, because it was in the English department that he met his girlfriend, his soon-to-be fiancée now that he has the financial stability to propose to her.

So, he has had it easy so far, his life and education advancing without much hindrance. He is intelligent, charismatic, known for his carefree smile and easygoing nature, a natural leader and loved by everyone who knew him. His future looks just as optimistic: a good job, a beautiful wife, his own house, car, family. No doubt, there will be rough times ahead, but he has a close group of buddies and the support of his loving parents, so he is confident he can get through it all. What more can he ask for?


Except sometimes he has dreams, vivid dreams of a life down the other path, visions of the impossible like his mother's suicide and his own incarceration, hallucinations of creepy people and weird cross-dressers. These are dreams that should repulse but, instead, leaves him with a bizarre sense of longing, a deep yearning for redemption in wide sparkling eyes and sanctification in a warm trusting heart. During those nights, it feels as if his life is a mistake and that alternate dream reality, destiny.

It is just fanciful thinking, he knows, spawned from some twisted subconscious desire to be hero-worshipped. Still, he thinks of the girl in the news this morning, a Kanzaki Nao who had naively trusted the wrong people and ended up dead on the side of the street. He cannot help but wonder if, had he chosen differently, he could have made a difference.

Reviews are much appreciated! XD