zeon_avalanthe: (hidarime)
[personal profile] zeon_avalanthe
Title : Refrain ~Bokutachi No Monogatari~
Author : [info]zeon_avalanthe
Rating : PG
Genre : AU ; Angst ; Friendship
Fandom : Arashi
Pairing : Sakuraiba (Friendship)
Disclaimer : Everyone knows that I don't own any of those boys, sadly.. The title, is again, shamelessly taken from one of my favorite Arashi's song, Refrain..
Summary : Sho had been living a normal college life with his roommate slash bestfriend, Masaki.. Until he found out the dark secret lies behind those smiles..

Chapter 8

From all people Sho expected to see, he never expected Kazama to appear on his doorstep now.

“Kazama-kun ?!”

The man smiled awkwardly.

“Hey. Uhm, may I come in ?”

Sho then made way to invite the younger man in. He offered some drink before going to the kitchen to grab said refreshment.

“This is the only thing we have now. I haven’t had the chance to go shopping lately.” Sho said politely as he place a can of orange juice and an empty glass on the table. “So, what brought you here ?”

A lot of questions are running on Sho’s head, but he decided to follow the flow and let Kazama speak on his own pace for now.

“The police let me go the other day, for I didn’t do much aside from being ignorant to the crimes happening around me. They still watched me though, not that I really mind.” Kazama chuckled bitterly. “But I’m not here to talk about me, I’m here to talk about Shin.”

Sho felt his body tensed at the mention of the name.

“I visit him just this afternoon, and the doctor told me that he’s not making any progress.” Kazama said, voice low. “He has no other family and relative, and the closest person he has is you, Sho-kun.”

“What’s your point, Kazama-kun ?” Sho couldn’t stop himself from asking.

“Shin has been in a coma for almost a month already. And you’re smart enough to know that the longer someone stay in a vegetative state, the slimmer their chance to ever wake up.  And sooner or later, the hospital will come and make you take the decision. Of whether you want to keep Shin alive, or not.” Kazama spilled, before an ironic chuckle came from his mouth. “He lost way too much blood that night, and received  fatal impact on his vital organ. But the doctors managed to save his life that night, and they were wondering as to why Shin has yet to wake up. In my personal opinion, Shin simply refused to face the cruel reality the second time.”

Sho closed his eyes. He had been pondering at that thought himself for weeks, about why Masaki won’t wake up despite the prediction of the doctors that he should be awake since some times ago, and about what would happen to Masaki if- no, when Masaki wake up. Sho fully realized the responsibility he shouldered along when he’s registering himself as Masaki’s dependent after knowing that he has no family anymore. But even now, he still doesn’t want to be the one to decide Masaki’s fate.

“You know, even if Shin were to wake up and recover, he might still have to pay for his crimes. But seeing the circumstances, I’m not sure what kind of punishment he will receive for them.” Kazama leaned back on the couch with a sigh. “And only by thinking how much time he will have to spend in jail, truthfully, I don’t know whether it is a good thing for him to actually wake up. Shin might have appreciate us more to never let him wake up and face the harsh world again. But I guess, that’s yours to decide.”

Sho said nothing, his head filled with many different scenarios of a ‘What if’ situation.

“If you were to ask me though, to me, Shin has already died.” Kazama said, voice so light that Sho stood up with full intention to punch him in the face. But Sho stopped himself, because Kazama suddenly turned to face him with determined look. “But you can still save Aiba Masaki, Sho-kun. No- you are the only one who can save him.”

Sho looked deep into Kazama’s eyes, and realized just how desperate Kazama is. And that is when Sho figured out that he’s not the only one in this whole thing.

“You’re wrong, Kazama-kun.” Sho said as he sat back on the couch, and he could see Kazama losing hope at his words. “We all can save Masaki together. You and me, and everyone else.” He turned to face Kazama and see him looking back at him tearfully. “Won’t you work together with me to save Masaki, Kazama-kun ?”

And Kazama flashed him a smile. A true and sincere smile, as he nodded his head to answer to his request.

***

Sho has decided that he will fight for Masaki’s life no matter what. He had put his faith on Masaki, and he has no intention to start disbelieving him now. But after a year of waiting and waiting, even Sho feel like giving up sometimes. The seasons have changed before Sho’s eyes, and it’s now spring again. Out of habit, Sho dropped by the pharmacy on his way to the campus, already holding hayfever’s medicines and have the cashier scanned them, when Sho realized that he didn’t even have to do it since Masaki won’t even be up to suffer the hayfever like he usually did every other year.

Sho sighed as he bought them nevertheless, planning to keep it as a lucky charm or the like, before he went out of the store and headed to the University. Sho wasn’t supposed to have any class today, but his mind was filled with so many things concerning Masaki as of lately, that one day he just earned himself a bad mark from Matsumoto-sensei. That’s why now, he went to meet the said lecturer to fix his mark.

“Come in.”

Strangely enough, the voice who invited him in as he knocked on the door did not belong to Matsumoto-sensei. In fact, it was another familiar voice he hasn’t heard in a while because the lecturer had to leave the campus for his exhibition.

“Ohno-sensei.” Sho greeted the man while giving a bow when he realized that Matsumoto-sensei is there as well. “Matsumoto-sensei. I’m sorry to have kept you waiting.”

“Jun-sensei hasn’t wait for long.” Ohno-sensei answered him instead. “Come. Take a seat, Sakurai-kun.”

Sho nodded dumbly as he walked to the chair Ohno-sensei pointed at and took a seat.

“I didn’t hear about you returning already, Ohno-sensei.” Sho said, still shocked at seeing the man after a while.

“I returned yesterday. And that’s when Jun-sensei told me that you’re having a bad time in classes lately. It was uncharacteristically of you to slack off, Sakurai-kun.” Ohno told him, his voice calm. “May I know what is it that has been bothering you ?”

“I-“ Sho hesitated, but decided to give it a go. “Have you heard about Masa- I mean, Aiba-kun, sensei ?”

“Yes, I have.” The tan man nodded his head, eyes showing sympathy. “I’m sorry for what had happened with Aiba-kun. I hope he will recover soon.”

Sho made a soft smile. “The truth is, sensei, Aiba-kun had done something in the past, and thus, I don’t know what will happen to him once he wakes up. He might will have to pay for his actions in the past, and the thought made me wonder whether it is a good thing for him to wake up at all.” Sho sighed, realizing that he has babbling some nonsenses in front of his lecturers. “I’m sorry, sensei, I didn’t mean to be this emotional. I guess I was just worried about him and in result, I failed to pay a proper attention in class. I’m sorry for all the troubles, I will make sure this won’t happen a second time.”

Ohno-sensei only smile at him, the same smile he always made when Masaki made a fool of himself in his class.

“It made you wish that Aiba-kun should never meet Ninomiya-kun at all, right ?”

Sho almost sprain his neck at the speed he’s using to look at Ohno-sensei’s face right after he said those words.

“Ohno-sensei, how did you- ?”

The man smiled before leaning back on his seat. “Ninomiya-kun was my childhood friend, Sakurai-kun. We were so close much like how you are with Aiba-kun. And I must tell you, that Ninomiya-kun was not always the fearful man he’d become. He was sharp-mouthed, careless to everything but his games, impatient, and is a big bully. But I knew better that he’s kinder than everyone else.”

Sho listened to the man’s story intently, waiting for him to continue as he took a pause.

“But something happened which brought an end to Ninomiya-kun’s family. The people they trusted the most, betrayed them and Ninomiya-kun had to suffer the lost of his own family in a massacre that night. He was spared, all because he was spending the night at my house and we were star-gazing when the incident happened. From that day, Ninomiya-kun had refused to believe in anyone anymore, isolating himself away, and vowing to himself that he will never let the same thing to ever happen again the second time.” Ohno-sensei made a sad smile, as if remembering the past he’d rather keep to himself.

“I was there when Ninomiya-kun changed. The kind and warm Ninomiya-kun I knew had evolved into a cold, and heartless human being. I was there when Ninomiya-kun said that he will erase every filthy human beings with his own hands from now on, to prevent the same tragedy from occuring ever again. I was there when he decided to abandon humanity, and I didn’t do a thing to stop him.” Ohno-sensei closed his eyes. “I knew everything, of what he’d do if I let him go, but I didn’t try to stop him. I knew everything he’d done from that moment on, in that isolated house of his where he controlled people and cease one existence with a snap of a finger, but I didn’t try to change that. If I have to say, I’m as guilty as Ninomiya-kun is.”

“Sensei, I-“ Sho tried to say something, but Ohno-sensei stopped him with a smile.

“I knew everything yet I decided to ignore them. And you, Sakurai-kun, you weren’t aware of the things which are happening, and yet when you found out, you decided to make a change. That’s what’s different between us. And that difference, will bring a different fate to our respectable partners as well.” Ohno-sensei told him, eyes soft as he said so. “Aiba-kun will have to face the consequence of his actions once he’s awoken, but he won’t be alone because you will be there to help him through the struggle. You won’t leave him alone. Unlike me...”

“Sensei...”

“Don’t be like me, Sakurai-kun.” Ohno-sensei said with a warning tone. “Don’t be like me and leave your bestfriend to face everything by himself. Be there eventhough you know you won’t be of any help, because by simply being there, you’re telling him that he’s not alone. That you’ve got his back to make sure he doesn’t stray from the path. I was too late to realize this, but I’ve learnt that simply staying by his side is enough. Because you’re his bestfriend, and you have the power to change his fate. You only have to believe in him, and in yourself.”

Sho looked up, and see Ohno-sensei sporting a warm, yet hurtful look. All these years, the man burdened it all alone. And Sho was sure that the guilt was eating him away at knowing the things Ninomiya had done, but was unable to do a thing to change that. Sho know the man as an easy-going and kind person, but now- all Sho could see in his eyes is regret. Because he thought that he was the one who turned his own bestfriend into a monster..

“Don’t worry about your mark. You’ve given it your best. I will do something about it to make sure you won’t have to repeat the subject.” Ohno-sensei told him after a while, his usual smile on his face. “You may leave now, Sakurai-kun.”

Sho was unsure when he stood from his seat. But when he turned at Matsumoto-sensei and the man gave him a nod, Sho decided that it’s best for him to leave for the time being.

“Thank you so much for your consideration, Sensei. I really appreciate it.”

Sho gave the two men one last bow before leaving the room.

***

“Way to go, Satoshi.” Jun suddenly said, and Satoshi stared at him in wonder. “Just like you, I am as guilty as Nino, if not more guilty, when I decided to leave that day.”

Jun made his way toward the couch and plopped himself down on it.

“I only made the study abroad offer an excuse to run away from you and Nino. Because the look on Nino’s eyes that day was enough for me to know that he’s a helpless case and I don’t want to be a part of whatever he’s plotting inside his mind. That’s why I ran away, in hope that you- the one closest to Nino, can do something about him.” Jun pulled out a cigarette from inside his pocket, lighting it before inhaling deep. “But when I returned and I met you again, I realized just how much of a shit I had left you that day. I realized that I should have stayed and we both might do something to help Nino. But you didn’t say a thing about Nino, and despite knowing everything too, I was too afraid to be accused at so I decided to play along.”

Jun looked out of the window, watching the students strolling around the small park of the campus.

“I was surprised that Aiba is one of Nino’s men though. He just didn’t look like the person Nino will pick in his troupe.” Jun said as he exhaled.

“It’s because he encountered Sakurai-kun mid-way.” Satoshi prompted as he join Jun on the couch. “The boy had change the darkness within Aiba-kun completely. He had achieved the one thing we failed to do.”

“Yeah.” Jun replied curtly as he focused his gaze on the crowd by the other side of the wall with Satoshi looking at the same scenery.

“Let’s visit Nino, Jun.” Satoshi said at last. “Let’s visit him and retry.”

Jun turned his head to look at Satoshi’s face properly. A sad yet determined look on his face. A smile slowly crept it’s way on Jun’s face as he see hope dancing in Satoshi’s eyes.

“Yeah.” He agreed. “Because it’s never too late to fix everything.”

~~~tbc

Okay, so I made a miscalculation and failed to predict the last chapter which is supposed to be this chapter but happened to be NOT this chapter.. *shot*
I didn't expected the story of Nino's past would end up this long, and thus, the miscalculation.. *sighs*
BUT ! I assure you, next chapter really is the last ! Promise ! >,<

I'm sorry for this stupid mistake~ And please drop by to tell me your thoughts (or to throw me insults for being stupid, anything goes, really)
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