Two weeks had passed since the Calamity had ended, two weeks since twenty-two people had passed in the cruellest of manners, and two weeks since Yuuya Mochizuki and Naoya Teshigawara had gotten out of the hospital due to the injuries that they had received.
Currently, the two boys were sitting in Teshigawara's bedroom, silence between them. The blond was still mourning the death of his childhood best friend, Tomohiko Kazami, and there was really nothing Mochizuki could say to make him feel better – the fact that nearly all of the students had tried to kill each other in fear was something no amount of words or actions could wash away.
"At least Kazami didn't have to survive remembering everything," Mochizuki offered after ten minutes of silence. He reached out and placed his hand on his friend's shoulder, his gentle features forming a smile. "I think that's something to be grateful for."
Teshigawara shook his head, pulling away from the hand. He rubbed at his eyes, trying to convey his thoughts. "...He was killing the other students mercilessly, all because the calamity had taken over everyone's minds..."
Mochizuki was quiet, knowing his best friend was right; things would never be the same between any of the members of Class Three again. Not now that the majority of the students, some of their family and even their teacher had been taken by the calamity.
"...I heard Sakakibara and Misaki were having lunch today," Mochizuki offered, trying to bring the other out of his depression. "We should join them."
Teshigawara just shrugged, unable to find the motivation to leave his room. "...I don't care..."
Mochizuki sighed. He knew he shouldn't let the blond sit here and be miserable lest things become worse so, gathering up his courage, he smiled as reassuringly as he could and stood up. "If we hurry, we can catch them. Let's go."
Teshigawara didn't reply; he didn't even nod to show he had heard the other teenager. He just continued staring down at his lap, his eyes distant.
Mochizuki did his best to not let this deter him. He reached down and gently grabbed the stronger male's shoulder. He helped Teshigawara to his feet, leading him out of the room. As expected, the blond was quiet, his eyes unseeing as he continued to stare at the ground.
They walked through the streets together, Mochizuki keeping eye on his friend, Teshigawara being as silent as ever. The reddish-brown haired boy's thoughts were focused solely on the guilt he felt about bringing the tape along on the school trip – he knew that if he hadn't just left it sitting in plain view, Takako Suguira would never have taken it, would never have played it over the loud-speakers – would never have caused such fear and confusion. He could only imagine the guilt Teshigawara felt, having originally believed he had killed his own best friend.
Teshigawara was also lost in thoughts, replaying the moment Kazami fell off the balcony over and over again in his mind. He shuddered, remembering the feelings of panic and despair as if that moment was happening all over again. He didn't notice Mochizuki's hand reach out to pat his shoulder; he was lost in memories he wished he could just forget.
It didn't take them long to get to the cafe Mochizuki had overheard their friends, Kouichi Sakakibara and Mei Misaki, talking about going to.
When they walked in, they were just in time to find the two aforementioned students at the counter, ordering their meals. Mochizuki smiled and moved forward, calling out to them.
"Sakakibara, Misaki," the reddish-brown haired male greeted, pulling Teshigawara along with him.
The brunet and raven-haired students turned and smiled back at them, having heard about Teshigawara's depression.
"Mochizuki-kun, Teshigawara-kun." Sakikibara returned the smaller male's smile, his eyes glancing at the blond. He was worried, knowing that he hadn't been coming to school and the reddish-brown haired boy had been staying with him. "I haven't seen you two in a while."
Teshigawara kept his gaze on the ground, almost as if he hadn't even heard these words. Mochizuki answered for him, his patient and caring nature shining through.
"We've been alright," Mochizuki explained. "We've mostly stayed at Teshigawara's home, but we have gone to mine on occasion to watch some movies."
Misaki was quietly listening to the conversation as she handed money over to the cashier. She wondered whether or not it would be a good idea to bring up school in front of the blond, seeing as that had been what sparked the boy's depression in the first place.
"Do you want to join us for lunch?" Sakakibara offered, trying to keep Teshigawara's condition in mind; it wouldn't do to abandon him after he and Mochizuki had been the only other two to stand up for them and treat them normally, despite the mass hysteria surrounding Class Three.
"That would be good." Mochizuki nodded, pulling his friend up to the counter to make their own orders. "What do you want, Teshigawara?"
The blond shrugged and looked away, unsurprising at this point in their lives. Mochizuki just patted the boy's shoulder calmly, knowing the other well enough to know what he would want.
"Two bowls of Teriyaki Chicken, please." Mochizuki handed over the money to the woman serving them before he led the blond over to a private area of the cafe with their friends, waiting for the waitress to bring their food to them.
Mochizuki's stomach couldn't help but drop in concern when, fifteen minutes later, their food was brought over to them and Teshigawara didn't even so much as look at the bowl. Would his friend ever be the same again?