Penultimate

With loneliness comes amity.

You already know this, but I don't own Shugo Chara! or any form of the franchise (is it a franchise? Dunno… probably. I say it is! Of this day, if it wasn't already, Shugo Chara! is a franchise. To me at least.) in any shape or way.

I'm really tired, so it isn't very good… but oh well! I tried, and if I failed I don't care because I feel awesome about finally accomplishing something! I really do check over my work for too long… I've been revising this myself for almost a month. This is the first time I've posted anything on Fanfiction too, so… please be patient. I'm just learning how to do this, and-

Family: Basse… you've had an account for more than what, three months?

NOT MY FAULT FAMILY! Jeez… I'm bad with computers, okay?

=-= - (*chibi stare*) Huh… I guess I really am pretty bad with computers. *stares down computer* Why are you so difficult to understand?

*Grandpa comes in* "Well Basse, you just-"

"I DON'T UNDERSTAND YOUR LANGUAGE!"

My first Fanfiction - please enjoy it! I like constructive criticism, please tell me if I have any errors or spelling mistakes!

I found some mistakes in this, so I edited them, at this late time of night... *looks at time* ... oh, it isn't actually that late. Well, I'm lazy so I guess in my eyes 10:36 P.M. IS sort of late...

P.S.: I wrote the song, so if you want to use it that's okay. But please give me credit for it in your story or wherever! I sang it to myself when I couldn't sleep (I made it up when I was, like, five.) so it's a really special song and I think it's relaxing. Sorry if it seems

weird!

Merci!~

-Basse Cerise

...

The wind nips and bites at pale cheeks.

Hollow eyes stare at the ground. Skinny white arms hug each other so close they might as well be connected, and nothing but a thin white shirt covers a small frame. Strands of hair escape Amu's messy bun that's practically leaking thin candy floss hair. Wisps of it tickle the young woman's face and neck, but it does no good in warming her.

The teenager shudders.

She's walking home alone - again. But that's normal, even if it shouldn't be.

At least she doesn't have work tomorrow. Finally, a break. She feels as if she can split in two from all of the tiredness she's experienced lately.

Amu sighs. Warm puffs of air escape her mouth as she breathes, but before it can even hit her face it turns frigid and she's left with nothing but something to shudder against. She's beside herself with aching in her arms and she just feels so unhappy and hurt and tired.

Her family left her home alone - again. It wasn't so bad though - she had gotten used to it a few months after her little sister started performing. It's to be expected though - Amu, after all, is just the girl with the sad eyes and has nothing that she can do to get some attention from her own parents.

She's so unhappy that she feels like she can die with exhaustion. While her mother and father - though being sweet when they were actually around - never really care about what she does. If she wants to see a movie, they'll wave goodbye without giving a second glance. It's as if they don't care for her safety in her eyes - it stings.

But then there's her sister. Ami. The little girl with pretty hair and gorgeous eyes who's a complete sweetheart. She gets basically everything she wants. They give her limits though, like how she isn't allowed to drugs or big parties or going out after it gets dark. She doesn't do chores, she doesn't have a job, she doesn't worry about homework because she's a no-effort angel. Their parents call Ami Sparrow.

Didn't that used to be my nickname? Why don't they call me Sparrow anymore?

Her little sister gets everything she wants - no argument (unless it's something reckless or ridiculous) needed. Of course, the woman gets what she wants too. The difference is that she does chores. She cooks, she cleans, she helps with the house. She got a job to help support her tuition for her parents even though they didn't want her to because her little sister wanted to go to singing lessons. They couldn't normally afford it, even with the parents' incomes, so the young woman took it into her own hands to help herself.

In the teenager's eyes, her little sister is worth it. She's always worth it.

A light flurry of snow begins to fall and she looks up curiously, still walking slowly along the cement sidewalk at a leisurely pace. She stumbles by the grocery store on the corner. Didn't Mom and Dad say we needed milk? And I think we're almost out of eggs…

Face dusted slightly pink, hands in skirt pockets, feet in shoes. Shirt ruffled, big eyes wondering.

Just how long has she been standing here?

Amu knows she needs to get home or she'll likely get frostbite because of her lack of warm clothes (the weather forecast had promised warmer weather, seeing as it's only October). But now she's reminded of the reason she hadn't worn her winter coat or her hat, even her scarf.

It's cold. Really cold. Standing there for a while, Amu remembers that she doesn't need to stand there and wait.

She wants to buckle down right there and give up hope.

Her father left her.

The young woman distinctly remembers him telling her that "you doesn't need to wear a coat, I'll take you to work and drive you back in the nice, warm car. Just like we used to!", but it wasn't.

Her mother called last minute - not even Amu, but her boss - saying that he couldn't pick her up. Her little sister had a recital that she'd forgotten to tell them about and he had to go to take pictures.

But it's okay.

For the young woman, if it's for her little sister's sake, it's always okay.

But this time it stings a lot more than the other times.

She never comes first.

Amu finds herself unable to take herself home. Going back to the place where nobody really cares what she does or where she goes hurts more than being forgotten. She is no masochist; she doesn't want to hurt herself again and again.

Suddenly she feels as if she has no control over herself. The woman can't control her own legs; they take off first at a slow jog, building up speed and momentum. Friction seems to have no effect and it's as though she's dodging gravity's effect as she turns corners rapidly. The cold October air bites at her and snow pelts her now, falling down, faster, faster. Of course, she doesn't care. She steps forward completely of her own will now, gazing at the park in front of her.

Isn't this where Mom and Dad would take me when I cried?

The park is wrecked. It had been long shut down whenever her parents took her there, but she didn't care; they'd found the power switch and the younger version of the girl standing there now had had some of the best times of her life there in that old shut-down amusement park.

It's all ruined, all turned to boulders or so hard and dusty that it might as well be a stone toy lost in an attic.

Suddenly the young woman finds herself on her knees and she needs to cry.

She looks up for a moment. She sees destruction everywhere. Her special place has been destroyed - the one place that she felt used to hold all of her fragile memories that still are so precious. The one place where she feels her parents really genuinely loved her.

Soft white hands are scraped and bleed slightly as they search the ground. One of the hands fist around a sharp shard of ceramic. The worst part is that it is light pink and has the edge of a yellow flower petal in the right upper corner. A loud sob wracks Amu's body.

Her teacup is broken.

Helplessly, like a child, she pushes herself up and grips the shard tightly, wobbling slightly. Her hand drips blood and a large cut is developing on her hand, but she doesn't pay attention to the pain that shoots through her hand and up her arm. The teenager moves forward limply toward the base where the teacups used to be. Standing there, she only sees one teacup that's even slightly together.

For something so ugly, it's the most beautiful thing in the world.

A deep royal blue with little sapphire and golden spirals and swirls stenciled in around it, it sits on a saucer that would spin if the power were on. The saucer matches the cup perfectly but it has little silver dots on it. It's really beautiful, the young woman thinks. Those dots look like stars.

The entire top of it is cracked, chipped and jagged, but Amu doesn't mind. When she moves to open the little door it crumbles under her smooth touch so she just steps inside carefully. The spinning rod is missing and the handle of the teacup is only half there, but it's okay. She curls up and puts her head between her knees, crying quietly. She has tried to stay strong for so long, keep up the dam she's built around the floodgates that have been kept full for so long; but now everything is breaking and her world is falling apart, and she just doesn't know what to do. Amu doesn't have anybody to help her and know just how much she's suffering.

Her thinning sneakers don't do much against the shards of ceramic and metal slivers

littering the floor of the teacup and her feet start to bleed.

Since when did being a sophomore in high school become so difficult? Since when did her heart hurt whenever she saw her parents instead of the burning love she felt as a child? The questions spiral around in her mind, her head beginning to ache. She grips the sides of her head over her ears and leans down further into her knees.

The winter air moves around her, cold and seemingly uninviting. With how the young woman feels right now, it's like a welcoming hug.

Amu's skin is paling more than before and her hands are sort of turning bluish.

That doesn't matter.

The snow whips around, tousling her hair wildly and freeing it from its bun. The pink hair tie she had in her hair flies away. Her long pink strands drape around her like a silk curtain and her eyes - those once fiery, burning, passionate honey-colored eyes - look up when she hears a crunch.

Her voice is lost and her face is flushed from crying, but Amu doesn't care about appearances. She cares that someone else is here, in her one special place, and this must have been theirs too if they're here after it's been broken for seemingly so long.

"Who's there?"

Her voice is scratchy and kind of more than a little raspy because of her crying, and her legs feel weak as she tries to stand. The ceramic piece is still gripped tightly in her pale little left hand as she seeks refuge from toppling over onto the sharp shards by gripping the chipped paint of the side of the teacup.

The thin white short sleeve shirt she wears blows up almost to her belly button in the harsh wind, but Amu doesn't really pay attention to that. Instead, her sad eyes widen as she looks at a tall young man. Probably about twenty years old, he stands there watching her carefully, albeit skeptically. When he gets a good look at her eyes, his soften and he takes on a pained look. His paper-white skin, almost as pale as the young woman's, gains a bit of color as he steps under the slightly torn canvas tent that hangs over the once still-assembled teacup ride.

She's only wearing a skirt that goes to her knees and her shirt with some thinning black sneakers and her skin is turning a sort of sickly dark pink, almost purplish.

Her long hair hangs around her though, so the young man believes she hasn't gotten hypothermia yet.

"Who are you?"

He asks the question in a soft voice that speaks volumes to her. It almost brings on another wave of tears as she thinks of the voice her father used to use with her when she was upset. She steps back slightly, almost teetering out of the teacup and just barely hanging on to the edge anymore as he offers a pale hand to her.

{Scene One}

A young man walks through town alone.

His name is Ikuto.

Ikuto does this a lot, however, so he's used to the stares he gets from the people that always see him taking a walk at the same time, in the same place, every day. Drunkards stagger about across the street by the bar in the corner, salesman attempt at selling last minute coffees or hot drinks at their stands before packing up for the night.

The young man looks up at the darkening sky.

Ikuto doesn't like being at home. His stepfather is wicked and seems to spy on him somehow, his sister fawns over him constantly every chance she can; he could have left the area by now and gotten away from it all, but he chooses to stay to look after his sister when he can rather than being in debt to the horrible man who married his mother by having him take care of her all the time.

He has a job of course, planning to save up some money so that he can buy his sister her own house when she's old enough for one. After all, he can't stand the thought of her being in debt to their stepfather. Ikuto has a car that he bought; he paid for all of his furniture in his room except for the things he inherited from his father in the will.

He hates it at home, actually. It's so quiet there, there's never anybody to talk to. It's so lonely, Ikuto thinks.

After all, he's the worthless stepson that can't do anything but play a deceased man's violin. His sister is so much better; he sort of wonders why the old man doesn't just stop helping him sometimes. Then he remembers; his sister would throw a fit the size of North America, South America and Asia all put together.

Ikuto sighs and tightens his dark blue scarf around his neck snugly.

He can't believe his luck, can he?

Even if he is wealthy, what can money really buy? Companionship can be bought in many forms, but that doesn't promise enjoyment. All he really wants is a friend, after all.

Someone to confide in other than his sister - because sometimes, there are things that you can't tell your family for fear of harming them. Other people, though… they usually just listen and talk you through it. Family overreacts and worries over you. All it does is cause harm in his opinion.

Ikuto's stepfather keeps 'taxing' him for taking care of his sister, he has pale skin, no mother or father to be named for - of course his sister is more important though, in his opinion.

He's just the young man with the sad eyes and no family to his name other than a sister who doesn't have time to spend with someone like… him.

Who really does, though?

It's oh-so cold and people are closing shop now. His normally just somewhat pale face is more pale than before and his tall figure is hunched, dark blue hair sweeping over eyes and nose pointed to the ground.

People are walking with loved ones, people are walking with spouses and children and all sorts of beings. Dogs, cats, even rabbits are carried home from the pet store or being walked around the block before going back inside to the warmth of home.

What is home?

Ikuto stumbles by an alley and sees a drunk man huddled in the corner there between some trashcans. At least he's more fortunate than some, the young man thinks.

It starts to snow.

Without noticing, his feet lead him to a different place than usual.

He stares at the wide land full of rubble and demolished carnival rides and stands, ceramic pieces scattered around and merry-go-round horses chipped and losing paint quickly.

There is one ride slightly intact; a small teacup out of all the others. Missing the top with shards scrambled in the base, it's deep blue with sapphire and gold swirls and spirals.

It's ugly, but he thinks it must have been pretty in the past. It has a sort of nice feel in the midst of all of the ruined carnival pieces and the old tent hanging overhead.

It sits on an old chipped ceramic saucer that has the same pattern as the teacup, but it has little silver dots littering its surface. The little dots look sort of like snowflakes to him.

They look pretty against the dull pastels of pink and yellow swirls on the floor of the once spinning ride. He steps forward and under the canopy of canvas with light steps.

A head of cotton-candy colored hair stands out from the rest of the scenery and Ikuto moves forward, slightly scared but fascinated. Why would someone - a normal person at least - be outside in this weather?

Snow crunches underfoot with a quiet snapping sound.

{Scene Two}

Now the two are at a standstill, facing each other with those matching sad eyes and pained expressions.

With a soft voice, Amu speaks. Though quiet, her still a bit raspy voice is chilling and seems to cut through the snow and reach the young man immediately.

"I'm not important."

Ikuto smiles gently and steps forward, and because he knows this girl will say he is wrong if he argues with her words, speaks up as well.

Sad and lonely eyes meet and a spark is made.

"Neither am I."

A melancholy smile reaches the young woman's face. Amu sits back down on the dusty padded seat of the teacup, taking the hand of the young man and pulling him in gently. Her lips are turning blue and her whole body hurts from the cold, but she has solace.

This man isn't her parents, her little sister, or any of the friends she used to have before she took on all of the responsibility of being a sixteen year old adult, but sometimes, she thinks, it's okay to confide in a stranger. Her smile widens just a little bit and she speaks with a slightly sad voice with a hint of hope to it.

"I'm lonely."

"So am I."

Amu can't hold back the slight grin that takes to her face, and like a chemical reaction, Ikuto's eyes lighten slightly and a small smile takes place on his face. He offers her his thick cotton scarf with a pale hand. She accepts it gratefully, tugging it around her neck and burrowing her chin into the soft fabric that's only sort of warm. It's like the best present in the world to her. Ikuto speaks again.

"Want to be lonely together?"

She shivers a bit because her legs are still cold and her arms aren't covered, and the ceramic piece is still held tightly in her hand and digging into her palm. Amu tries to be careful not to ruin the soft beautiful gift she's been given, but it's nearly impossible with the cold October air slicing at her smooth skin. She digs her hands into the fabric with the shard still encased in her left one.

"I'm Ikuto. What's your name?"

She nods and asks him,

"I'm Amu. Why are you lonely?"

Ikuto hesitates before replying, "Not the best home situation. And you?" Amu's eyes gleam with more tears about to be shed for this stranger who's offering her such wonderful things. She feels terrible now - she's accepting gifts in an abandoned park that used to hold good memories from someone who has it worse off than her, she thinks. She finally finds her voice and mumbles,

"My little sister is better than me."

Looking up at the young man, seeing his confused expression as he pulls her closer because she looks even colder now (which she is), she continues.

"My father left me at work - again. Mother wanted him to go to my little sister's concert with her to take pictures."

Amu looks so beaten down, the young man notices. Her eyes have a dull light to them, and she looks sort of dead with the way she moves.

When Ikuto looks at her eyes again, he's reminded of himself when his mother died.

"You know," Ikuto starts, "I can't imagine what you must go through at home. Is it hard to deal with?"

"No," she responds, though she moves away a bit with a guarded look, "I got used to it a while ago. It still hurts a little bit though…" she trails off.

"Are you abused?" He offers her a small, tight-lipped, supportive smile, urging her on.

Amu pushes Ikuto away with a frightened look in her eyes.

Amu's hair covers her eyes again and he sees her lower lip quivering.

"No," she whimpers. "I'm not. I wish they would notice me though!" She lets out a quiet sob as she finishes her sentences, placing the shard next to her on her left (the opposite side of Ikuto) and buries her face in her hands. When she pulls away to make sure her hands aren't blue though, she's shocked to find blood smeared across her palm and up her fingertips. She touches her face gently with the other hand and it comes back with small traces of the metallic red liquid.

The young man's lips turn down again into a thin line, almost akin to a scowl, as he grabs her face with soft hands and takes her left hand in his right. He dabs her face with a white handkerchief from his pocket embroidered with a blue spiral in the corner then wipes her hand free of the blood.

Ikuto ties it off with a smooth knot and kisses her fingertips on the injured hand.

"Thank you," Amu says evenly as she gains feeling back in her hand from the clotting. "I appreciate your kindness," she finishes as she looks up to his eyes. He looks almost happy.

"You really shouldn't dig your palm into ceramic like that," he says with a tone like he's chastising a child. "You could infect your hand or get seriously hurt." She smiles gently and keeps looking at him with an adoring look, like a little sister would give to an inspiring older brother.

"I'm fine," she says. "I couldn't really feel it."

She shudders violently. The young man grabs her elbow and pulls her over onto his lap, unbuttoning his coat and pulling it back around, fastening it around both of them.

Ikuto stares at her worriedly, a scared look trapped in his glassy eyes.

"I should get you home."

She burrows closer and rests her head in the crook between his jaw and shoulder, swinging the scarf up to cover some of his neck too. Amu's face gains some of its color back and her lips don't seem so blue anymore. She still looks scared, but stronger than before.

"I don't want to go home," she announces stubbornly, a pout adorning her face. The young man can't help the grin that melts onto his face like butter, smoothly spreading across his face and comforting the young woman leaning on him.

"Why not?" He asks it so softly and comfortingly, but he feels so much like he's found someone that he understands and the other way around, he has a happy sort of twinge to his voice that makes her smile slightly.

"My parents don't really give me much attention. When they do it's about how my grades are going and how work is. If I'm getting everything done," Amu pauses as she looks up at him with a sort of melancholy look to her smile now, "almost as if they expect me to be taking perfect care of myself… so they don't have to."

Ikuto grins down at her with kind eyes that's don't seem quite so lonely anymore. The gestures that he gives her and the feelings he returns to her - feelings of being truly cared about, because what normal stranger would approach someone who's hurt, take care of them, and believe in them when they could possibly be in danger? - are almost enough to make her cry again, but she holds the tears in with her floodgates that don't seem as full anymore.

Snow continues to build up around them and the teacup seems to take on a new sense of being there because it doesn't seem so broken and the carnival doesn't seem so dull. The snow is a sense of magic now; not a cold hug that is only thought to be there - not a harsh wind that cuts at flesh and attacks at the injured - no, now it seems like a blanket of little stars and it flashes bright white light on the two, making the world a new sort of wonderland.

It's still cold, but that doesn't matter as much anymore. And suddenly, Amu starts to sing a little song her mother would sing when she was sick. The song doesn't seem like a stab in the back anymore; it doesn't seem like a broken lullaby that a child would sing to herself, either; it seems like a warm pat on the back and a kiss goodnight as the two misfits sit there, feeling more at home than ever.

"Sleep tight, goodnight. The little stars are out tonight. The stars blink their eyes in Braille, the sky is dark and wears a veil. It's so lovely, look quite closely. Goodnight, sleep tight."

She pauses and finds that Ikuto is almost asleep. He nudges her arm with his fingertips to urge her to continue her lullaby.

"I cannot lie to you, nightmares sometimes do come true. But it's all right, you'll sleep tight. I'll be watching over you."

She finishes with a soft tremolo and smiles gently, leaning back against the young man's collarbone and closes her eyes.

{Scene Three}

Amu wakes up in a different environment than usual. She's in a soft bed with mahogany posts and midnight blue covers and clean, crisp-smelling white sheets. The room smells like chocolate and citrus and the smell of pancakes drifts through the door on her left. The side of the bed next to her is undisturbed and the window is open, allowing the cold

October air to reach its fingers in and grab at her arms which lie over the covers. Goose bumps form on the soft and pale skin but she doesn't care at all.

The little teacup shard, now clean and shiny with the edges smoothed, sits on the bedside table and is newly represented with the scent of chocolate and somehow still smells like the old shut-down carnival but cleaner if not happier.

Getting up from the bed quietly, she fixes up the duvet and replaces the pillows against the headboard according to size with the biggest in the back and the smallest in the front and makes a beeline for the window.

Looking out over the city with the air moving around her coolly, Amu notices her shirt folded up on the armoire on the left of the bed. Her shoes and socks have been taken off and the white carpet is so fuzzy and warm underneath her feet she almost feels the urge to lean down and touch it with her hands. Her solid black undershirt is covered by an old black tee shirt that's several sizes too big and the sound of a dryer whirring in the next room over gives off a comforting feeling.

How long has it been since someone else has done her laundry for her and put her in a comfy bed?

Amu looks back out the window. People skitter by stories under her, and she almost feels like she's watching a huge moving portrait.

Snow heaps dot the landscape and parks still have slightly green grass in patches on them; children play on swings and make snowmen and snow angels, crying out cheerfully as they get hit in the face with a snowball or rearrange pieces of coal on their snowmen. Icicle or carrot noses sit promptly on the grinning faces of the snow figures, and some statues of famous people or even detailed cities the sizes of office desks decorate the city of Seiyo below and she grins.

Strings of garland and colorful bright lights are strung around lamp posts and mailboxes, even store signs and street lights.

Everything is backed by the bright sheen of the white snow that blankets everything and glitters like millions - no, trillions - of stars and the world seems so beautiful.

A soft dinging noise interrupts the sweet silence other than the howling wind outside. Arms and legs dusted with goose bumps and face tinged pink from the cold, the teenager steps away from the window and wanders down the hallway.

Yawning, she steps into a richly decorated living room. Two leather vanilla colored couches sit facing each other with a glass coffee table separating them and there is a folded blanket with a pillow on top on the couch on her left. The doorways seem to be yawning, the tops of them slightly wider than the bottom. A soft white carpet is underfoot, plush and softer than rabbit fur. Deep, almost midnight blue walls surround the furniture with majestic white curves and stencils patterned in to make the room look as if it belongs to royalty.

The side to the left of the doorway - the side facing most of the city (with the parks and fields, not the buildings and train stations) - is a glass wall, so transparent that it seems as though she could step right through it and plummet to the ground with no effort.

A long, black grand piano sits in the corner of the room; Amu identifies the instrument as a Steinway immediately.

A glass-blown chandelier that is simple with hangs overhead with little light bulbs inside turned on to the mid-light setting. Dark hardwood floor is visible in the areas surrounding the edges of the carpet.

A teakwood cabinet holds a pretty tea set on the far side of the room, furthest from the doorway. It's carved in shapes of curves and there is a little picturesque setting in the corner of a little girl sitting under a tree with a kitten in her lap. The young woman stares in awe at the extreme detail put into the carving; the whole thing is so realistic, right down to the bow in the girl's curly hair, the blossoms floating down from the tree branches, and the little teeth visible in the kitten's slightly open mouth.

She steps back slightly to take in the whole picture, but meets soft fabric. Looking up to the face much taller than hers, she smiles genuinely. Just the fact that she's smiling gets the young man behind her to grin. A soft chuckle escapes his mouth, and with a voice like velvet, he announces -

"Pancakes are ready."

{Scene Four}

The dining room is beautiful too.

A chandelier identical to the one in the living room hangs overhead and a marble table with mahogany legs is against the wall by the kitchen island, which has pots and pans of all sorts hanging over it on a metal rack. A case full of shined silverware and polished finery sits parallel to the table.

The two sit at the marble table chatting aimlessly, often one cutting the other off with a terrible joke and both of them laughing over their immaturity with a snort, either of them finding some entertaining story that somehow relates to the joke and the cycle repeating over and over. Suddenly curious, Amu asks,

"How did you get me here? Do Mother and Father know I'm here?" The young man responds with,

"Oh, that. I carried you on my back to get here, and I found your cell phone in your skirt pocket so I took it out and found your father's number. I didn't use your phone or take anything from it," Ikuto adds. "I just found the number and called him. He thanked me for taking care of you but wants you home soon. He says he misses you along with your mother," he says, the last two sentences a bit quieter than the others.

The young woman stares at the pancakes on the plate in front of her, her smile still in place though it wavers slightly.

Amu looks up through her bangs and there isn't a tear in sight.

"Thank you for taking care of me," she responds quietly. "I'll gather my things and leave. I really do appreciate the hospitality you've shown me." Offering one more tight-lipped smile, she takes the plate with half of a pancake left over and takes it to the kitchen with him following. Folding the pancake and holding it in her mouth with some trouble, she turns on the sink and washes the plate and places it beside the counter.

"You don't have to go," Ikuto says desperately. "You can call back! Please stay for a little while longer."

"I have to go home and help with chores," she says sadly. "And surely you have work today."

Amu's suddenly very pleased that she doesn't have work today, otherwise she would have been fired from being so late at the moment.

Ikuto reaches out and brushes his fingertips along her palm as she starts to exit the room into the hallway to the bedroom for the teacup piece.

"Don't go," his voice cracks. "Please. My job isn't hard, you can come along. You can go home whenever you want and I won't hurt you, I promise!" Tears prick at his eyes and it becomes harder than usual to see for him. "Please, just a little while longer," Ikuto begs. "Please."

She thinks for a moment and looks down at him as he gets on his knees, clasping his hands together dramatically.

"I can call Father and ask," she says hopefully. A bit of doubt is laced in her voice. "It's not sure, but…"

"Thank you," Ikuto cries out. "You're just the first person that really, I don't know… understands me. I don't really have any friends."

"Likewise," she responds with a grin. She helps him up and holds his hand, allowing him to lead her to the bedroom and sits beside him on the bed. He slings an arm over her shoulders as she locates her phone, as directed by him, in the bedside table's drawer.

Her father picks up the phone and they both hold their breath as he asks who it is.

Amu looks to Ikuto for reassurance and he nods, saying "If not today, maybe some other time."

"Hi Daddy, it's me. We want to ask you something…"

...

So I end it here! *dramatic gasp*

And no, I'm not continuing it if you ask (not likely, but if somebody does I'm too lazy to respond… my fingers hurt from revising so much…). I'm leaving it up to you to decide how it ends! You can even write an ending and post it and send the title to me along with your username! If you do I'd love to read it.

Fanfiction is so amazing and cool!~

If you're wondering, this is actually not very romantic. It can turn into romance if you want, but meh. I can't write romance, so... yeah. It's sort of like this:

Two lonely people walk into a bar. The barman asks, "what can I get you two to drink?" and they respond with "what are you saying? We cannot understand you, good sir." and the barman responds, "well, I think I understand why. I believe I am a horse, miss and mister." and with that, the three walk (well, two walk and one gallops) away into the sunset.

*Not really though! Real one down there.*

There are lonely people all over. They feel unappreciated or unhappy about certain situations they're in or they just don't like their lives and they all sort of have someone meant for them to be their friend or companion. The meaning (as in the one on the top, if you read it) of with loneliness comes amity is like this…

'Amity' is another word for friendship or companionship. Basically, for every lonely person there is another lonely person looking for someone to be friends with. It's sort of a phrase meaning that if you're lonely, it won't last forever and if it does then you were never really lonely.

Like it, love it, hate it?

If you like it, great! If you love it, great! If you hate it, good for you! But I don't really care because I wrote it and it took a long time to edit! Please don't send me hate messages by the way, but I really appreciate constructive criticism and accept it well as I am an avid writer and strive for top-notch writing.

Wow, the actual story, not the notes at the top, is... well, a lot of words. Huh… longer than I originally imagined it, but whatever. At least it's good (in my opinion, that is. If it's actually terrible, please tell me any edits I need to make to make it better whatsoever and I'll edit and repost it later when I'm not tired)!

The song is totally mine, so please don't just take it... if you use it good for you and please tell me (I love reading stuff that includes relevance to other things, don't you?) and I'll be sure to check out your story, but if you don't mind give me credit for my song... I wrote it a really long time ago and found myself humming it to myself to calm down when it was really, really dark out and there was thunder (not the light kind, by the way). Just so long as when you use the song (I guess I'll call it by what I used to, "Daughter Dearest" since it's a lullaby a mother might sing) you mention Basse Cerise and "I don't own this song", you're good to go!

Thanks for reading!

Merci,

-Basse Cerise