I've been listening to Mayday Parade. They're pretty good.
The places in this fic are real, but I'll leave where they are up to you.
We had the next three days off of school so the staff could recuperate from what is now known as The Night we Flipped the World. Grimmjow actually came through my window and sat at my desk, banging the stapler against my bedpost until I grabbed the desk appliance from him and chucked it out the still open window on the first night.
"Are you trying to wake up my whole family?" I hissed at him. I tried to hide that my heart was pounding adrenaline through my body. Not everyone gets visits from the blue haired demon, and two in as many nights was unheard of.
Grimmjow pointed out the window at the dark streets.
"You're burning twilight. Get out of your bed Kurosaki we have shit to do."
I groaned but rolled out of the bed anyways, tugging on old jeans and a dark blue long sleeve before following him out the window and into the open door of the Chevy.
Grimmjow was one of those drivers who used all gas and no brakes like time was too short to waste in a car, so I didn't have a chance to fall asleep as the Chevy bounced and bucked its way to our destination.
After what must have been the most haphazard parallel park in history(there are streaks of rubber smoking from the road that weren't there before), Grimmjow got out and took a deep breath of the cool air, stretching his arm and cracking his neck.
He had taken us to a long street crammed with artsy stores and little independent restaurants. Flyers advertising concerts from local up-and-coming bands and garage sales coated the brick buildings where there wasn't graffiti. Ivy twisted over everything, making the street look like it grew from the ground, like it belonged there. I trailed my fingers absently over a spray painted gopher face.
We walked slowly down the left side of the street until Grimmjow stopped at a place called Peacock Threads. He knocked on the darkened glass until the door burst open, revealing a skinny man in a deep purple shirt and boxers. He ran a hand through his shoulder length black hair and glared daggers at us. I wonder if Grimmjow knocked on everyone's windows at ungodly times.
"I don't know what time it is, but there is no sunlight and I do not work when there is no sunlight so go away now and Let. Me. Sleep."
"It's already two. I need incense Feather Boy."
Looking closer, the young man did have feathers in his hair, a red and yellow one woven together amongst the black. For a moment, I couldn't tell if he was going to call the cops or kill us himself. But he shoved the door open and flipped the light switch.
"God, I can't argue with you right now. Just hurry up you crippled bastard."
Grimmjow made a beeline for the back of the store while I leaned against the counter, still not fully awake. The man with the feathers was named Yumichika. He made tea while he talked, surprisingly animated for not being a night owl.
"He's so lucky I have a weakness for blue hair. Seriously, going off the radar for four-and-a-half years and then showing up wanting incense in the middle of the night. I remember when he was afraid of the dark and dragged a teddy bear around in elementary school."
The tea finished brewing and he poured us each a mugful. I took mine and sipped slowly, savoring the taste. Yumichika chugged his.
"We graduate in a little over a month," I end up saying. "I don't think college will be able to handle Grimmjow."
Crashing noises came from the back, quickly followed by swears and Grimmjow sprinting towards the counter, a handful of black and white incense sticks and a pink one sticking out of his ponytail.
"How much for all these, Yumi?" He fanned the sticks out on the counter like a deck of cards next to my half-empty mug and reached into his pocket. Yumichika waved off his attempts to pay.
"Just take them, you already know I'm not going to charge you. Make sure you use them for something worthwhile. If I catch you doing drugs I will have your ass."
"What would I do without a friend like you Yumi? Gosh, I think I'm tearing up!" Grimmjow stuffed the incense into his jacket pocket and gave Yumichika a clap on the back. He ran out and I heard an excited yell and the Chevy roaring down the street. Yumichika shook his head, a smile laying at the corners of his mouth.
"Forget college, I don't think the rest of the world is ready for Grimmjow."
He grabbed a business card for the store from a pile next to the register and pressed it to my palm before I walked out the door.
"I'm still half asleep," he whispered. "But I can tell you're adorable and I think you'll want a job to distract your broken heart. Grimmjow always breaks things and I don't think you've loved that many people before."
I pocketed the card and walked out quickly, trying to pretend I didn't hear what he said. If a half-dead most likely homosexual college student could see my crush after five minutes, I hope to God that Grimmjow's too busy running forwards to look back and see me caught in his wake.
After Grimmjow's victory lap around the block(free incense was hard to come by apparently), we walked the street until it curved to a dead end, a sign advertising a dance studio creaking gently on rusted hinges. Grimmjow pressed his hand against the door, rough wood coming into contact with calloused fingers.
"Pick the lock, Kurosaki." My fingers flew and he pushed me inside, closing the door quickly behind us.
A hand brushed my hip, and I flinched and tripped, falling on my ass in what I'm sure would have been very graceful looking if it wasn't so dark.
"Fuck, sorry," he muttered. The light sputtered to life, an old light bulb with a worn shade dangling from the ceiling. I was sitting on a staircase. "Get p, you're hiding the words."
I looked down, and on the front part of each step there was bold black lettering painted on a white background. Standing up and stepping back, it looked like the whole place was one giant lump of color, one painting swirling into another, a cockatiel flying from a rainforest of slinkies and silly string to a guitar with the eyes of an owl peeking out from the center hole. It was a world trapped on brick.
"The evenings, mornings, afternoons," Grimmjow began to recite, closing his eyes.
"I have measured out my life with coffee spoons: I know the voices dying with a dying fall, beneath the music from a farther room. So how should I presume?" We walked slowly up the staircase, creaks and groans following our footsteps.
"What poem?" I asked.
"The love song of J. Alfred Prufrock by T.S. Eliot."
"Poets are weird."
As it turned out, the dance studio was not a dance studio but a night owl Mexican dive that served us steaming burritos in less than five minutes, like they were expecting us at three in the morning. Grimmjow picked at his roll of greasy meat and rice while I wolfed half of mine down before noticing his lack of an appetite and following suit, picking at the remains of mine as well.
"Wouldn't it be great if every night was like this?"
Grimmjow took a slow bite out of his food, talking around the lump of tortilla in his mouth. "By day, we're completely lost seniors with no idea about our future. But, at night," He chucks the rest of his burrito after a few more bites and pays for both of ours before I can pull together loose change from my jeans.
We're like superheroes, running around liberating incense and eating Spanish comestibles from secret hideaways."
"I guess, but we all have to grow up at some point. Our parents did, and so did their parents before them. We can't break the chain because then the whole system fails."
"Chains are always missing a few links."
My eyebrows raised slightly. "Are you suggesting that we're the missing links?"
"I guess that's a matter of following your expectations and following your personal desires." His eyes, I swear they were one hundred times brighter than the light on the staircase, like he already knows everything about the future and he's trying to let one of us fall easily.
I had that funny feeling like when you look up at the stars and you want to go catch them but at the same time you know you'll never get to them, not only because you're stuck to the ground but they're also already gone and what you're seeing is the light of dead celestial bodies and I worry that when I finally run Grimmjow's long illustrious road of fame and catch up to where the man himself should be he'll already be long gone just like them.
Hahaha. I'm so tired. I've gotten a lot of support on this story though for just getting back. You guys are awesome, seriously.