Rebirth Ch. 5
When morning finally opened the eyes of the burnt-out Turaga, it found him glaring almost
hatefully at the sliver of sunlight peeking through the blinds. He sent a mental command to the
sun to go away and let him sleep. The sun did not obey, much to his chagrin.
Not like it would listen to him anyways, but still…
Shifting, Nuju became aware of the slight weight pressed up against his chest. Looking down, he
couldn't help but smile. Still locked in each other's arms, Matoro was found nestled in the sheets
and hiding against his chest, sleeping peacefully. Wrapping his arms around the other, Nuju
started stroking Matoro's soft hair.
He let out a heavy sigh, feeling a warm spark of hope flitting through his subconscious mind.
Matoro seemed to be adjusting to him; he actually wanted him to stay with him all night after
all. There was still a bit of apprehension in his eyes, but it was quickly starting to fade as they
continued to interact. Maybe there was still hope of reforming their bonds…
Nuju looked over his shoulder and at the clock on the bedside table. It was late morning now, far
past his usual wake up time. Not that he was complaining, he couldn't remember a time he had
slept so well! Or at least not during his mourning.
Now he just had to wake Matoro up. This was becoming slightly familiar, he thought in
"Matoro, it's time to wake up." Nuju whispered gently to the still sleeping Toa.
Said Toa stirred in his sleep, but did not open his eyes. Instead he buried himself deeper into
Nuju's arms and groaned, pulling at Nuju's shirt to cover his face. Nuju couldn't help but
chuckle. He really hadn't changed much in terms of his sleeping habits.
"Come on Matoro, you can't sleep forever. Don't you want to eat?" Nuju encouraged, poking at
Finally relenting to the annoying poking at his cheek, Matoro opened his eyes and blinked
owlishly before giving in to the urge to yawn loudly. Blinking the sleep from his eyes, he sat up
suddenly and watched Nuju with curiosity.
Nuju sat up as well and watched Matoro's staring at him curiously. His Toa continued to stare at
him almost contemplatively, and Nuju had to wonder if his bed-head was really that bad…
"I feel like we know each other, but I can't place where from…" Matoro suddenly said.
Nuju felt his heart pick up in speed, both in hope and a bit of hurt from his boy's lack of
memories. But it couldn't be helped right now. But this was progress! He was having instinctual
feelings of familiarity, though small, but still there. Now after a good night's sleep, maybe
Matoro could remember some things.
"Matoro…how much do you remember? And please tell me as much as you can." Nuju asked,
though slightly frightened of what he was going to say.
Matoro looked down at his lap, playing with a feather that had been tugged loose from his still
retracted wings. He made a mental note to remind himself to remember to withdraw his wings
"Well, to be…blunt…I can't remember much of…past a point…everything is like a gray
fog…but I do remember…pain, pure agony…it hurt like… I can't desc-…it was mind numbing,
but…" Matoro paused to collect his thoughts, "Also relief…people I think I care about were
safe. And it all started with the…I forgot the name of it, but it was a mask, I think…? It was as
if it was sucking all the life out of me. It was…scary to know that I was going to die…then I
remember a very long period of nothingness…then waking up here." Matoro concluded with a
bit of uncertainty as he drew his knees up to his chest, nearly curling into a ball.
It finally seemed to occur to Nuju right then as he listened to Matoro. He didn't notice it before
since Matoro was barely talking, but now, he noticed something very disturbing about his Toa's
speech patterns. Not only the fact that he could not remember his past, but his vocabulary had
dropped back to the level of the child. Which lead Turaga Nuju to assume that many other vital
skills may have been lost when his Toa had died.
It was no wonder he had so much trouble walking before, he thought. He not only was fairly
weak and unaccustomed to his body after so long, but he probably wasn't sure how to
walk. The wings were probably no help, but still, this was a huge amount of information
to take in. And first thing in the morning no less!
"Umm… hello?" Nuju blinked and shook his head as a small, pale hand was waved in front of
"U-um, sorry, what now?" He asked. Matoro blinked at him.
"You kinda spaced out for a moment…are you okay?" Matoro asked, head tilted ever so slightly
to the side.
If it wasn't for how drastic the situation was, Nuju would have mentally commented on how cute
Matoro looked like that. Shaking his head slightly, he answered with a nervous smile.
"It's nothing, just thinking. Let's get ready for the day shall we?" Nuju held a hand out to the
slightly confused Toa.
As Matoro took Nuju's hand, he let out a startled yelp as he was pulled to his feet. At the startled
yelp, Nuju quickly swooped in and caught Matoro before his legs completely gave out and
crashed to the floor. He mentally cursed himself for being so careless and forgetting Matoro
would need help walking. The Toa clung onto his shoulders tightly as Nuju carefully guided him
to standing on his own feet. He could thankfully at least stand with only minimum support.
Nuju also seemed to realize that he would have to re-teach Matoro so many things before he was
truly ready to meet the villagers again. Not to mention being reacquainted with his brothers and
sister, and the rest of the Turaga. He could only imagine how well that was going to go.
"Why don't you ah, withdraw your wings to make it a bit easier?" he suggested.
Matoro blinked before he seemed to remember that he did, in fact, still have his wings out and
draped limply against his back. He quickly drew them back into his body, a familiar halo making
itself known on his head in their place. Nuju made a mental note to ask Matoro later just how he
knew how to do all of this.
But first, he needed a bath, and to get out of that hospital gown. He still had some of Matoro's
old clothes in storage, so that solved one problem. Actually it solved two problems since he
could bring his wings in and out at any given command. So no alterations needed, thankfully.
Though at the moment, that seemed to be no help in Matoro not knowing how a 'bath' worked.
As slightly embarrassing as it was, Nuju would not be put out. He guided Matoro through the
steps of how to clean himself up and how to work the faucet. Turning on the warm water, Nuju
filled the bath up for his assistant and gave him a bit of privacy. After he had to help
Matoro take off the hospital gown. That was quite awkward. Though as far as he knew, Nuju has
only ever seen Matoro naked twice; once being an accident on his part, and the other…well, he
saw Matoro with his shirt off. So once then…
Well, at least this time it wasn't a completely painful experience. If Nuju recalled correctly, the
first time he saw Matoro completely dressed down, the then-Matoran had lashed out in sheer
embarrassment and clocked him in the jaw. Matoro didn't show that much remorse at the time,
but he did apologize for making Nuju bite his tongue during the punch. After giving him a verbal
lesson in knocking.
'Little brat…' Nuju thought fondly as he went to his own room to take his own bath. He
wondered how long it would take before he could lovingly call Matoro a brat again…
After they got cleaned up, Nuju had to re-teach Matoro how to dress himself. After a few 'Definitely need to make a big breakfast for him.'
embarrassing complications, Matoro got everything on the right way. Although much to
Nuju's shock, the clothes, despite once being Matoro's, were just the slightest bit loose on him.
Unbelievable, Nuju thought. Matoro had actually gotten thinner than he already was. It was
'Definitely need to make a big breakfast for him.'Nuju thought.
But the morning routine wasn't done just yet. Just one more thing left to go. Nuju guided Matoro
to the nearest chair and grabbed a hair brush. At first confused, Nuju had to go into a brief
explanation about proper hair care. And with Matoro's hair being quite long, it needed a bit more
attention than someone with shorter hair. Nuju would be unashamed to admit that this was also
partly an excuse to play with his Toa's hair.
As Nuju ran the brush through Matoro's hair, he couldn't help but recall several instances when
he did this exact same thing to him. And as he brushed, he remembered. And as he remembered,
he cried for his dear Matoran.
To be continued…