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Unrequited love is a ridiculous state, and it makes those in it behave ridiculously.”

― Cassandra Clare

As long as Hiiragi can remember he admired Yuki. He looked up to him and felt genuinely happy in his presence. It never crossed his mind that the same admiration might turn into something more. Something way more serious. Something that might cost him his entire life.

 

So in conclusion Hiiragi Kashima was desperately in love with Yuki...but Yuki was in love with Mafuyu.

 

Hiiragi knew very well falling in love wasn't something he had control over but he still felt horrible. If he could he would make himself fall out of love with a snap of fingers he would. Really, he would do it in a heartbeat...but he couldn't. 

 

But he wasn't only feeling horrible he was also feeling afraid. Afraid of hurting Yuki, afraid of hurting Mafuyu...afraid of hurting himself.

 

It all started by the time they were starting middle school. Hiiragi started feeling flustered whenever Yuki was around. At first he denied it because it was so obvious Yuki loved Mafuyu and that Mafuyu loved Yuki. It was always so obvious these two had a special bound...the one Hiiragi and Yuki didn't. 

 

He finally accepted his feelings in his last year of middle school. Just around time Hiiragi witnessed Mafuyuki ship sailing in the classroom when he caught them kissing. Just around time SYH was formed. 

 

His plan was easy. He planned on hiding his feelings forever so he doesn't hurt anyone. Easy? Nah.

 

It all happened after one band practice. Hiiragi's stomach started feeling weird and at first he thought he just ate something wrong and pushed the feeling away.

 

Later that night he couldn't take it anymore so he rushed to the bathroom and threw up. But instead of vomit he spit red rose petals. 

 

Just like that...his worst fear became reality. After seeing bloody red petals on the cold, ceramic bathroom floor, Hiiragi accepted that he'd die young. 

 

As a kid he read dozens of stories about so-called 'hanahaki disease' so he knew pretty well what was going on. He knew the only cure for his hanahaki was Yuki falling for him and Hiiragi wasn't ready to ruin his friendship with Yuki by confessing in an hopeless attempt to stay alive. 

 

Ignoring hanahaki was suicide and Hiiragi knew that but what choice did he have? 

 

And just like that he tried his best to keep hanahaki a secret. It was never anything too serious. He would throw up some petals, clean right after without getting caught and move on. Sure it would get exhausting very often but he learnt to deal with it.

 

Until one day he felt his lungs burning during band practice. " Shit " he thought to himself and excused himself to the bathroom. 

 

He somehow made his way to the studio bathroom before throwing up more petals than ever before combined with a pile of blood. 

 

That day Hiiragi choked on one of the petals and couldn't stop coughing. Every part of his upper body ached in agony and he thought to himself, "Oh...so this is really how I'll die." 

 

He continued to choke and spit blood. At some point he ended up on the floor fighting for breath.

 

Shizusumi and Yuki must have noticed something was up because a minute after Shizusumi started aggressively knocking on the doors. "Hiiragi? You okay in there?"

 

Now almost lifeless, Hiiragi cracked a "Fine." Between coughs.

 

Please don't come in. I don't want you to see me die. He prayed.

 

"I'm coming in!" Shizusumi shouted and the doors of the studio bathroom swung open.

 

Shizusumi looked frightened as he caught his best friend laying in the pile of blood, choking on rose petals. 

 

"HIIRAGI!" He shouted and ran to his side. "Are you alright!? What is going on?"

 

"Sh-" Hiiragi coughed blood, "Shizusumi-"

 

It all happened too fast for Hiiragi to process but next thing he knew was that Shizusumi picked him up and wrapped his arms around Hiiragi's waist and bent him forward. Shizu clenched his fist and placed it on Hiiragi's stomach right above the belly button. He then out his hand over his clenched fist and pulled sharply inwards and upwards. He repeated the movement around five to seven times.

 

After some time Hiiragi finally managed to catch his breath. Tears streamed down his eyes from all the pain. Just as the drummer let him go, Hiiragi collapsed on top of him breathing slowly.

 

"Hiiragi!" Shizusumi grabbed him and pulled the smaller boy closer, "What the heck-"

 

"Guys?" Yuki called from outside the bathroom, "What's taking you so long? Are you alright in there?" 

 

Hiiragi twitched and barely managed to shout, "It's okay don't come in!"

 

"We have it under control." Shizusumi added on but if Yuki was one thing then that was stubborn.

 

Hiiragi could see a doorknob move by the corner of his eyes. He stumbled on his feet, shaking slightly. Shizusumi opened his mouth to say something but before he could Hiiragi was in the doorway facing persistent Yuki who didn't get a chance to get inside.

 

"Hiiragi!" Yuki gasped, noticing the blood on the bassist's shirt and mouth. "What in the- Are you okay?"

 

Hiiragi bit his lip, "Don't...don't worry about this Yu. I'll be okay."

 

Before Hiiragi could process anything Yuki grabbed his shoulder and wiped the bloody mouth with the sleeve of his shirt.

 

Hiiragi's heart skipped a beat. Casual displays of affection like this made his hanahaki even worse. Because how could he fall out of love when Yuki was so caring? When his first instinct was to use his own white shirt to wipe the blood away. 

 

"What happened there!?" Yuki asked, horrified.

 

"Eh…" Hiiragi chuckled lightly, "Nothing really. I hit myself and got all bloody."

 

"Oh...okay." Yuki sighed, "How's your stomach?"

 

"Threw up." 

 

"Is it something serious?" Yuki grabbed Hiiragi's cheek.

 

"No." Hiiragi mumbled.

 

Yuki sighed, "That's good. But really...you should be more careful." He gave the bassist one of his heartwarming grins.

 

Hiiragi blushed and backed away, feeling the pain in his chest.

 

With that Yuki smiled and waved Hiiragi goodbye. "I'll go home now. Practice is over." 

 

"R-right…"

 

Hiiragi sighed and remained standing in the doorway until he heard Yuki leave. His hand was slightly shaking and he felt as if he was going to collapse again.

 

"Hiiragi." Shizusumi called behind him.

 

Bassist twitched in surprise. He has completely forgotten Shizusumi was still there.

 

"Uh-" Hiiragi walked up to him slowly. "S-sorry I'll clean up the mess." He mumbled and rubbed his neck anxiously.

 

Please don't ask anything. His mind begged.

 

"I'll clean it up. Go lay down, it's not safe for you to move too much after what happened."

 

"Look Shizusumi I appreciate you trying to help, really I do, thank you but...I don't need you to clean up my mess."

 

"I wasn't asking." Shizusumi cut him off, "Now go lay down."

 

If it was any other day Hiiragi would argue. He would insist on Shizusumi leaving and he would insist on cleaning the mess he had done but at that moment he was too tired and was barely standing so without any more complaining he nodded and walked to the other room and laid on the beanbag they had there.

 

His entire body was trembling from the cold and he felt sick. Almost as if he was going to vomit again.

 

After a while Shizusumi walked in sighing. "You're coming to my house today."

 

Hiiragi's eyes widened, "Huh?! How so?"

 

Shizu rolled his eyes, "I can't just leave you to be home alone after this."

 

Hiiragi's heart skipped a beat, "S-shizu...don't worry I can take care of myself."

 

"Again, I wasn't asking. Now get up or does princess want to be carried?" 

 

Hiiragi sighed and got up, "I can walk, thanks."

 

"Let's hurry. The next train should come in a few minutes."

 

"Yeah...let's go."

 

  •  

 

"Here. Have some hot tea." Shizusumi handed Hiiragi a warm mug.

 

Hiiragi smiled, "Thanks Shizu." 

 

They came to Shizusumi's place about a hour ago and since then they have both showered and changed into new, warmer clothes. 

 

Hiiragi took a sip of warm tea already feeling slightly better. He was thankful to have such a caring friend like Shizusumi by his side.

 

"Are you feeling better?" Drummer asked calmly.

 

Hiiragi bit his lip anxiously, "Yeah...I am. Thanks again Shizu." He faked a grin. Shizusumi might or might not have noticed Hiiragi's behaviour being off, either way he said nothing.

 

After a while of uncomfortable silence Shizusumi buried his face in his palms letting out a frustrated sigh. "So are we just going to ignore it?" He managed to ask.

 

"What...what do you mean?" Smaller boy played dumb, praying his friend just lets it go already. He had no energy to talk about what happened but just as Yuki, Shizusumi tends to be stubborn.

 

"Why?" Shizu asked, his voice trembling.

 

"Hm?" 

 

"Why didn't you tell me you moron." The sentence came out harshly but Shizusumi didn't seem to mind. "Why didn't you tell me you had hanahaki?!"

 

The moment Shizusumi turned to look at Hiiragi clear regret became visible on his face.

 

A trembling chuckle escaped Hiiragi's mouth and tears streamed down his face.

 

Sometimes he hoped he knew how to hold back his emotions. He wished he weren't such a crybaby but here he was...crying over what might have been a simple question to anyone else but to Hiiragi...it was a sensitive topic he wished not to talk about but he knew better than that. He knew he wouldn't be able to hide how he felt forever. It was just the matter of time until someone found out.

 

"He- hey!" Shizu grabbed Hiiragi's shoulders pulling the bassist closer in his embrace. "I'm sorry. I didn't mean to upset you."

 

"Please...please don't tell anyone." Hiiragi pleaded.

 

"It's okay...your secret is safe with me but we need to talk about it eventually...is that okay with you?"

 

"Mhm…" bassist replied and put the mug of tea on the nightstand.

 

"Good...I have some homework that I need to finnish." Shizusumi muttered under his breath, "I'll go do it downstairs and leave you to get some rest. Okay?"

 

Hiiragi smiled, "Oh so THIS IS a question?"

 

"Shut up moron." Shizusumi rolled his eyes and just for a moment it's there. Hiiragi can see it vividly...a small smile on Shizusumi's face.

 

I wonder...if Shizu always looked this pretty when he smiled.

 

"I'll try to get some rest then. Seeing that even when you ask something I don't have a choice." Hiiragi smirked, purposely annoying his friend.

 

"You're a bastard Hiiragi...I hope you know that." Shizu got up and turned off the lights. 

 

Soon after Hiiragi was left alone in the dark room.

 

Despite promising Shizusumi to rest he remained awake for an upcoming hour. 

 

  •  

 

"Morning sleepyhead." 

 

Hiiragi woke up to a familiar voice. 

 

"Hm?" He sat up yawning, "Shizu? What time is it? When did you come?"

 

"I came around midnight. It's 10 am at the moment."

 

"Ughrhks-" Hiiragi pouted.

 

"Shizusumi stared at his friend wide eyed, "What the fuck- that sound wasn't even human."

 

"When do we have school today?" 

 

"Around 1:30. But we should stop by at the studio on our way. I left something there yesterday."

 

Hiiragi nodded and got up on his feet, stretching.

 

"Did the princess sleep well?" Shizu snorted.

 

"Yup. Feeling like new." He smiled but even he couldn't tell if it was faked or not.

 

Shizusumi nodded "Good to hear." 

 

"Let's go eat something I'm starving." Hiiragi whined.

 

"Yeah...there's some soba in the fridge."

 

  •  

 

Just as said they agreed, on their way to school they stopped by the studio to grab some of Shizusumi's textbooks.

 

"I'm done." Shizu annouced and they exited the studio making their way towards the school. 

 

"Where's Yuki?" Hiiragi asked curiously.

 

"Don't know." Shizu admitted, "He said he was going to see Mafuyu yesterday."

 

"Oh." Hiiragi chewed on his lower lip.

 

"Why are you asking? Did you need something from him?" Shizu asked.

 

"Nope. Just wondering."

 

"Ah," Shizu hummed, "Alright."

 

"Don't...don't you think we should also visit Mafuyu? We haven't seen him in a while…"

 

"Sure." Was all Shizusumi said. 

 

Hiiragi almost forgot about his hanahaki. Being with Shizusumi calmed him down but now...well now he was thinking about Yuki again and his lungs felt as if they were going to explode.

 

"Shizu, I- I don't feel so good." Hiiragi mumbled.

 

"Hm?" Shizusumi's eyes widened, "Hiiragi! Are you-"

 

But whatever he planned on saying remained unsaid because before either of them could react, the small bassist coughed red rose petals.

This time there was no choking, no blood, no need for Shizusumi to intervene. Just petals.

 

"S-shit." Hiiragi swore and threw the petals on the sidewalk.

 

"Does...does this happen often?"

Shizusumi looked down.

 

"It didn't used to." Hiiiragi sighed, "It would happen once or twice a week but...but lately it became a daily thing." 

 

If it wasn't for Shizusumi coming closer and using the sleeve of his jacket to wipe away the tears, Hiiragi wouldn't even notice he was crying. 

 

"I guess you could say I'm...I'm close to death." A heartbreaking sob escaped his mouth.

 

"I know you said you didn't want to talk about it but...let's sit down at the park and talk okay? I can't keep on ignoring the fact that my best friend is on his deathbed." 

 

"But school-" 

 

"Fuck school." Shizu cut the bassist off. "Let's get going." 

 

"Mhm...yeah...sure." Hiiragi said shakily.

 

They made their way towards the park close to the school and sat down on an empty bench. 

 

"So…" Hiiragi's mind raced. He prayed that Shizusumi won't ask for details. He already accepted his fate. He planned on dying in peace without bothering anyone so why was Shizusumi so persistent. It wasn't like him at all. "What do you want to know?"

 

"How long?" 

 

"Since the beginning of summer…" Hiiragi sighed.

 

"But it's early winter now!" Shizusumi's eyes widened.

 

"I know…" Hiiragi forced a smile.

 

"Did you tell anyone?!" Shizusumi half shouted.

 

"Wh-what no! Shizu are you crazy!? You're the only one who knows."

 

"No." Shizusumi chuckled and buried his face in his hands. "You absolute moron."

 

"I already accepted my fate…so...don't worry too much about me you might hurt that little head of yours."

 

"Hiiragi, have you considered getting the surgery?" 

 

Hiiragi snorted in laughter, "No. Besides, the survival rate is 50/50 and I really value my emotions."

 

To be honest a thought of getting the surgery did cross Hiiragi's mind but only once and then after googling about it a little more he gave up on the thought.

 

Only 50% of the patients survived the surgery and the ones that did lost their emotions continuing on living as lifeless creatures unable to laugh, cry or feel at all. 

 

"I can't with you sometimes." Shizusumi frowned, "What about confessing? Did you try talking to them?"

 

Hiiragi felt his lungs tighten and he coughed a single red petal. He picked it up and admired it from the corner of his eye. "Nope...they are in love with someone else."

 

"Oh…" Shizusumu ran his hand through his black hair. "Shit...shit SHIT."

 

"Don't worry about it too much. This is not your mess." 

 

"No." Shizu shouted, "I find out my best friend has fucking hanahaki disease and then YOU EXPECT ME NOT TO TAKE PART IN IT." he laughed, "You're a moron if you think I'm just going to look past it and ignore the fact you're practically on the verge of dying.

 

"I...I really appreciate that Shizusumi but...I don't want you to see me die…"

 

"Stupid," Shizusumi lightly punched his friend's arm, "We are going to find a way for you to stay alive."

 

"Don't get your hopes too high mister." Hiiragi leaned his head on Shizusumi's shoulder and a wave of warmth washed over his body. 

 

He knew that Shizusumi sticking at his side is only going to bring pain to the drummer but at the same time arguing with him was no better. Shizusumi was a logical thinker so he almost always won a fight.

It annoyed Hiiragi beyond words but  at least now he was...happy? He wasn't sure how a dying person can be happy when they know there's no cure...but he was. He was happy to have Shizusumi at his side.

 

  •  

 

A week has passed since Shizusumi found out about hanahaki and Hiiragi would love to say things got better, that he was feeling better but that would be a complete lie because in reality his hanahaki has only gotten worse.

 

So now here he was, laying in his bed, paller than ever coughing petals every so often. 

He threw up even more blood than ever before that same morning. 

 

"Shizusumi…" he mumbled under his breath. He almost lost his ability to speak. 

"I'm...afraid...I don't want to- to...die like this." 

 

Shizusumi ran his fingers down Hiiragi's cheek wiping away the tear that made his way down the bassist's face.

 

"I already told you...we'll keep you alive. I promise."

 

That made Hiiragi cry even more because it was so painfully obvious that Shizusumi was lying. Hiiragi wasn't completely who was his friend trying to fool more...Hiiragi or himself.

 

"I just love him too much…" he sobbed.

 

Shizu's eyes widened, "him?" 

 

But Hiiragi didn't answer. He just kept on sobbing knowing fully well that his lack of answer didn't really affect Shizusumi.

 

  •  

 

"You shouldn't be out of bed." Shizusumi said bitterly.

 

"I'm alright." Hiiragi lied.

 

"You're shaking like crazy." Shizusumi bit his lower lip. "Let's not even mention you threw up blood again this morning."

 

It was already the middle of winter and the entire city was covered in snow. No matter how many times Shizusumi tried to stop Hiiragi from stepping foot outside the smaller one would never listen.

This time was not different.

 

"I promised M-mafuyu we'll see each other." Hiiragi said with a trembling voice.

"Besides… this might be the last time I see him."

 

"Don't say it like that." Shizusumi took off his bright yellow scarf and wrapped it around Hiiragi's neck.

 

Bright yellow was not the color that suited Shizusumi however Hiiragi thought it looked...cute?

 

"Dammit where is that little punk?" Hiiragi swore silently. It was so weird to hear his own self not yell and shout...being silent didn't suit him at all and neither did the itchy voice.

 

"Yuki sent me a message that they're on their way."

 

Hiiragi's expression dulled, "Yuki's coming too?"

 

Shizusumi nodded, "Seems so?"

 

"Hey guys! Over here!" A familiar voice called out behind the two.

 

"Yuki!" Hiiragi forced a smile, "Mafuyu!" 

 

Bassist slowly walked up to the two boys. "Mafuyu we haven't seen each other in a while-"

 

"Maybe if the three of you weren't so focused on your band we would see each other more but I don't know, just a guess." Mafuyu replied coldly and Hiiragi could see Yuki pout and roll his eyes.

 

"O-oh...heh yeah we...we have been practicing a l-lot lately. Ha-ven't we?" Hiiragi said his voice breaking a few times.

 

"What's wrong with your voice?" Yuki asked.

 

"Oh um- I-" Hiiragi searched for an excuse.

 

"He got a fever." Shizusumi stepped in.

 

"Is that so?" Yuki looked back at Hiiragi and placed his hand on bassist's shoulder, "Well I wish you a fast recovery."

 

Mafuyu nodded, "Yeah...take care."

 

"T...thanks." Hiiragi mumbled.

 

"Where should we go?" Shizusumi asked three other boys.

 

"Maybe we could go to our caffe?" Yuki suggested.

 

"Our?" Mafuyu asked him a hint of sarcasm in his voice.

 

"The one I have been telling you about." Yuki glared at his boyfriend. "One Shizusumi, Hiiragi and I go after our band practices."

 

"I don't want to go to your caffe," Mafuyu replied, "Let's just go to that one across the street." 

 

"Sounds good to me," Shizusumi replied. "It's closer and Hiiragi can't really be outside much due to his fever."

 

"Hey-" Hiiragi started to argue but was cut off by Yuki muttering something to himself bitterly.

 

In the end they ended up in a caffe across the street. Despite indoors being warm and cozy Hiiragi was still shaking from the cold.

 

"Um...Hiiragi?" Mafuyu asked, taking a sip of his just ordered tea. "Have you been getting enough sleep lately? You look pale."

 

"I'm fine." Hiiragi sighed, "just… kinda tired." 

 

"Don't worry the fever will be away before you know it." Shizu said.

 

"Mhm…" Mafuyu nodded and took another sip.

 

"So how's school Mafuyu?" Shizusumi asked.

 

"It's alright." Was only answer Mafuyu was willing to give.

 

They sat there joking and talking just like in old times but something seemed terribly wrong. It might be just Hiiragi overthinking but Mafuyu and Yuki seemed different than usual. 

 

Did they have a fight?

 

"Hey Hiiragi," Yuki called his name and the bassist twitched in surprise, almost spilling coffee over himself. "You alright buddy? You keep zoning out."

 

"I'm-" Hiiragi felt rose thorns tighten around his lungs. "Excuse me I- I need to use the restroom."

 

"I'll go with you." Shizusumi added on fastly and two of them ran towards the bathroom. 

 

As soon as they were inside Shizusumi locked the doors to keep any curious eyes away. 

 

Hiiragi threw up more blood as Shizusumi rubbed circles on the smaller boy's back.

 

After he was finally done he collapsed in Shizusumi's arms. Blood stains were now clearly visible on the yellow scarf. 

 

"That's it. We're going home." Shizusumi decided.

 

"But we...we can't just leave Ma-mafuyu and Yu...we just came a hour ago." he somehow managed to whisper.

 

"I'm sure they won't have anything against us leaving a little earlier." Shizu pulled his half dead friend closer. 

 

Shizu unwrapped the bloody scarf from Hiiragi's neck to avoid any suspicion and shoved it into his coat.

 

"I- my legs...I can't move."Hiiragi cried out silently.

 

"I'll carry you." Shizusumi said.

 

"I don't...i- don't want to...be...a burden."

 

"Will you shut up already?" Shizusumi cut him off. "You idiot, I said I was going to carry you until your legs feel better. Besides we can't stay here forever."

 

"Sometimes...I hate- I hate how...persistent you've become." Hiiragi frowned.

 

Shizusumi didn't reply. He just picked up his friend in the bridal style and left the bathroom.

 

Damn. Shizusumi is so strong and warm...I don't want him to let me go.

 

"Hiiragi?!" Mafuyu asked, his eyes wide. "Is he okay?"

 

"He almost passed out. I think his fever is getting worse." Shizu replied and Hiiragi just nodded weakly.

 

"Let's go then. I pay." Yuki decided and went away to pay.

 

"Let's go. He'll catch up with us eventually." Mafuyu decided and three of them walked out of the caffe. 

 

After a minute Yuki caught up with them just as Mafuyu predicted.

 

"Hey Mafuyu I can walk you home." Yuki offered when they arrived at the train station.

 

"I can go home alone." Mafuyu glanced away.

 

"What's up with you lately?!" Yuki snapped.

 

"Nothing you should worry about." Mafuyu bit his lip.

 

"OF COURSE I'LL WORRY DAMMIT!" Yuki yelled. 

 

"Guys calm down." Shizusumi cut them both off but neither of them listened.

In the meantime Hiiragi's strength returned a little and he was able to stand on his own. 

 

However, the couple didn't seem to notice it and they kept on arguing.

 

"WHY!? WHY DO YOU WORRY?! WHY DON'T YOU JUST GO HAVE YOUR BAND PRACTICE DAMMIT!" 

 

"WHAT'S UP WITH YOU AND MY BAND?!" Yuki put emphasis on my and for a moment Hiiragi could see pain and hurt in Mafuyu's eyes. 

 

Hiiragi knew Mafuyu loved music. He actually considered inviting him to their band but whenever he'd bring it up as a suggestion Yuki would shake his head and say it's better if Mafuyu stays out of this.

 

"Just leave me alone...like you always do." Mafuyu's lips trembled. He could blame it on the cold if he wanted to but Hiiragi knew it was due frustration.

 

"I would do anything for you." Yuki said bitterly.

 

"WOULD YOU STOP WITH MUSIC ALREADY?"

 

"WHY DON'T YOU TRUST ME!?" Yuki picked his boyfriend by the collar of his shirt.

 

"Because I can't live without you." Mafuyu cried. 

 

Yuki sighed and reached to touch Mafuyu but the other boy didn't seem to like it because he pushed his hand back.

 

"Would you die for me then!?"

 

Hiiragi glanced at Shizusumi. Both of their eyes were wide. 

 

What the fuck did just hapen.  

 

Hiiragi wanted to say something. He wanted to shout at both Mafuyu and Yuki for being idiots and fighting. He wanted to step in and stop them...but he didn't. He had no energy and he felt as if he was going to throw up again.

 

With the corner of his eye he could see Mafuyu walking away shaking from anger. 

 

Hiiragi couldn't blame him though...but he couldn't accept his behaviour either. To say something like this just didn't sit right with the bassit. But it wasn't only Mafuyu's fault. Yuki was boiling with rage as well and said some stupid things as well.

 

He chose to ignore what happened, knowing the two will have to make up eventually...right? Him and Shizusumi turned away and followed Yuki for a while until they parted ways. 

 

Yuki barely said anything the entire walk...the atmosphere felt weird and Hiiragi hated it.

 

When the three of them parted ways Yuki didn't even bother saying goodbye but Hiiragi could swear he heard him whisper softly "In a heartbeat."

 

  •  

 

"Will Mafuyu and...Yu be alright?" Hiiragi lay on his bed curled into Shizusumi's side.

 

"I hope so." Shizu replied. "I mean...they did fight pretty bad. I would never expect Mafuyu to say something like that."

 

"Yeah...I think he's...frustrated that Yu-yuki didn't want him to.. join our band." Hiiragi muttered.

 

"Rest...you shouldn't think about it. They'll be fine." Shizu ruffled the smaller boy's hair.

 

"I...I hope so." Hiiragi said and before he could say anything else he felt his eyes close.

 

Damn I'm tired.

 

  •  

 

Hiiragi woke up feeling pretty good. He had almost forgotten he had a deadly disease. 

 

Now something's off

 

He touched his throat lightly but he felt no pain. He forcefully coughed but no petals came out. 

 

'Wait...could it be?'

He smiled at the thought.

'Could my hanahaki be over?'

 

Hiiragi turned on his phone, "I have been asleep for twenty-four hours?!" He half shouted and then he noticed. He noticed his voice wasn't itchy nor silent anymore.

 

"Why didn't Shizu wake me up?" He wondered out loud, rubbing his eyes.

 

He got up stretching. He felt like new. Surely nothing could break his spirit now, right? 

 

He walked to his living room wondering if Shizusumi went home by now. 

 

"Oi, Shizu? You here-" He shouted as he walked into the kitchen but the sight in front of him made Hiiragi stop in his tracks. "S...shizu?" 

 

Shizusumi was sitting at the table with his face in his hands and he was...crying? 

 

"Shizusumi-" Hiiragi rushed to his friend's side. "What's wrong? Why are you crying?" 

 

"You shouldn't be out of bed." Shizusumi wiped his eyes with the sleeve of the shirt he was wearing.

 

"Actually I'm feeling kinda better now...what the hell is wrong?" Hiiragi insisited. Shizusumi wasn't the most emotional guy Hiiragi has met so when he caught him crying in his kitchen all by himself, he knew something was wrong. Something was terribly wrong and Hiiragi wanted to know what that something was.

 

A trembling sigh escaped Shizusumi's mouth. "Hiiragi...sit down."

 

Hiiragi listened to his friend and sat next to him. "Hm?"

 

"Now promise me...promise me you won't overreact." Shizu gave him a pained look.

 

"Just spill it out already." Hiiragi glared at the other boy. 

 

It took Shizusumi another minute to calm down. Hiiragi's gaze found his. At that moment Shizusumi said the words Hiiragi wished he could unhear.

 

"Yuki commited suicide."

 

  •  

 

"My name is Kashima Hiiragi! What about you?" A small boy with sparkling eyes asked his new neighbour.

 

"Yuki! My name is Yoshida Yuki." He giggled. 

 

"Cool! Let's go play!" Hiiragi clapped his hands.

 

"Sure!"

 

  •  

 

"Hey Hiiragi!" Yuki approached his friend.

 

"Hm?"

 

"Have you met the other guy in our neighbourhood?"

 

"Hm? You mean Mafuyu?" Hiiragi blinked.

 

"You know him?" Yuki gasped as if his friend just told him something unbelievable.

 

"Mhm." Hiiragi nodded, "We played once...before you came. Even though he doesn't talk much." He sighed.

 

"I wanna play with him." 

 

These five words...these five simple words made Hiiragi feel weird. He couldn't explain it at the time...shock? sadness? surprise? nah...thinking about it now he knew it was jealousy. He wanted to keep Yuki for himself and himself only. 

 

He knew he was being selfish and he hated himself for it but he craved Yuki's attention. Yuki was his sun and Hiiragi was earth always revolving around him. He was not ready to give up his place as Yuki's best friend.

 

Before he knew it, a mysterious boy joined them and now it was three of them. At first Hiiragi felt weird around Mafuyu but soon enough he moved on and three of them spent all of their days together. Maybe Mafuyu was not so bad after all…

 

  •  

 

"Okay boys and girls! Please gather here!" A tall woman clapped her hands. "There is a new boy that will be joining us today. Would you like to introduce yourself?" She ruffled the boy's hair.

 

"Um...hi." he mumbled, "I am Yagi Shizusumi. I'm new in the town and I hope I can play with you."

 

"You can play with us!" Hiiragi heard a familiar voice behind him call. 

 

He turned around to see Yuki already made his way towards the new guy, "We need another person for our game anyways! Do you mind joining us?"

 

"Sure." Shizusumi smiled and followed Yuki.

 

"Be careful boys!" Woman called behind them. 

 

"Will do!" Yuki grinned wide. 

 

It was at that moment Hiiragi and Shizusumi made eye contact for the first time. It was for just a second that Hiiragi noticed how pretty Shizusumi's eyes were. He smiled and approached the other two. He was determined to make friends with this new guy. He seemed like the kind of guy who would be there for me and play with him.

 

It was quite hard to explain but Hiiragi could see that there was something up with the newcomer...he just couldn't figure out what. 

 

He pushed the thought away and waved at Shizusumi with a wide grin on his face. "Hey Shizu-chan! I'm Hiiragi."

 

"Nice to meet you Hiiragi." Newcomer smiled softly.

 

  •  

 

"Let's play marriage!" Yuki announced.

 

"How do you play?" Hiiragi blinked looking at his friend who always came up with the craziest games to play.

 

"Have you ever been at the wedding?" 

 

"Nope." Hiiragi shook his head.

 

"Neither have I." Shizusumi noted, "What about you Mafuyu?"

 

"I don't think so." He spoke quietly.

 

"My mom and I went to one this weekend! It's when two people love each other and then they marry! It's really gross because they have to kiss." 

 

"Bleh." Hiiragi sticks out his tongue.

 

"Yeah but we can do it on the cheeks!" 

Yuki clapped. "Come on it will be fun!"

 

"Who'll marry who?" Shizu raised his hand.

 

"I will marry Mafuyu!" Yuki pointed at the ginger boy.

 

"Hm!?" Mafuyu's eyes widened, "Me?"

 

"Yes you dork!" The other boy smiled and took Mafuyu's hand. 

 

Hiiragi's stomach started twisting and he felt weird. Secretly he wanted Yuki to pick him...he always used to pick Hiiragi first...until Mafuyu came and soon became his number one choice in everything.

 

"Okay." Mafuyu replied softly. "What do I do?"

 

"Will you marry me?" Yuki asked, taking Mafuyu's hands.

 

"Can I really? Can two boys marry each other?"

 

"Hm? I don't see why not?" 

 

Mafuyu shrugged and looked at Yuki, "I will. I will marry you."

 

"Yay!" Yuki smiled and kissed Mafuyu's cheek. "Hehe! We will be such a cute pair!"

 

Hiiragi clicked his tongue and walked away, not being able to look at them anymore. It was all such a weird feeling. He sat down on the grass and began playing by himself.

 

He wasn't angry at Mafuyu. No. He liked Mafuyu and his presence a lot despite the fact he was always rough with the older one. He liked him and cared for him but he also hated how because of him Hiiragi couldn't play with Yuki as much. Whatever...with time he learnt to accept the way things were.

 

It was Shizusumi that came to him and pulled him out of that small and scary mind of his. 

 

"Why did you leave the wedding?" Shizu sat next to him.

 

Hiiragi was silent for a moment and then spoke, "I wanted Yuki to marry me…"

 

"Oh…" Shizu moved closer to the other boy and offered him his hand, "What about me? Will you marry me?" 

 

Hiiragi's eyes sparkled, "Really…you'd marry me?" 

 

Shizusumi nodded, "Only if you say yes."

 

"Then…" Hiiragi thought for some time. He wanted Yuki to be the one that will marry him but how could he decline Shizusumi when he asked him so nicely. Hiiragi shook his head to get rid of the thoughts and smiled wide. "Sure! I'll marry you Shizu."

 

Shizu nodded, "Do you think we'd also make a cute pair?"

 

Hiiragi can't quite remember what happened then because the next thing he knew was that he was giving Shizu a kiss on the cheek, "The cutest."

 

  •  

 

It has been two months since Yuki's death. Everything in Hiiragi's life went downhill from there. He barely ate, he couldn't focus in class and started getting bad grades, Mafuyu seemed to fall from the face of the Earth...but now his hanahaki was gone at least. Last time he coughed petals was a week after Yuki's death.

 

It hurt to lie to Shizusumi but he somehow explained(or at least tried to) that he "moved on".

 

Shizusumi just nodded and let him know he was glad.

 

Life quickly became a battle despite his hanahaki gone. Hiiragi was aware his mental health has been worsening...especially with Mafuyu cutting ties with him all of the sudden.

 

"I promised M-mafuyu we'll see each other." Hiiragi said with a trembling voice.

"Besides… this might be the last time I see him."

 

Maybe back then he was not wrong at all? Maybe he didn't deserve to see Mafuyu after all. He probably hated him anyways.

 

Maybe if he stepped into the fight when he still had a chance...just maybe Yuki would still be alive...but maybe didn't let him go back and change the past. 

 

It took him awhile but after some time he found some courage and confronted Shizusumi, "I wanna continue with our band.."

 

"Hm?" Ex-drummer looked up from his phone.

 

"We worked so hard...Yuki worked so hard...I can't just let all of his and our hard work fall into the water now can I? It'd be selfish."

 

"If you want to continue with the band it's fine with me." Shizu ruffled his friend's hair.

 

"Thank you…" Hiiragi whispered and buried his face in Shizu's shoulder. "Thank you on sticking by my side."

 

  •  

 

After that day Hiiragi and Shizusumi worked extra hard during their band practices. Hiiragi took the place of the vocalist and started working on some song ideas. When Yuki was in the band nobody else was included in the song writing process but Hiiragi from time to time wrote something just for himself. Little did he know these drafts would come in handy later.

 

Sometimes Shizusumi would help in some ways but it was always Hiiragi when it came to lyrics. He put his heart and soul into those words. 

 

He wasn't sure if it reached anyone or if his words touched anyone. Either way he kept on doing it. He kept on opening his heart and letting all of his feelings out and people seemed to like it.

 

Since SYH's guitarist passed away so suddenly a guy from Hiiragi's and Shizusumi's light music club offered to play for them as a support. 

 

It was all going smoothly when it came to the band. 

 

They had melody, they had lyrics, they had support guitarists and Hiiragi felt strangely powerful. As if he was holding the entire world in his hands. 

 

But when it came to Hiiragi's personal life and mental health it was another pair of pants. It was still bad but not as nearly bad as it was two months ago.

 

 Who knew that just two days after his last hang out with his friends he'd lose two of them…

 

Lots of times Hiiragi could be found in Shizusumi's presence. Whether it was at home, in school or at band practice he simply never left his side.

 

He worried he was being clingy, he thought Shizusumi would hate him and abound him as soon as his hanahaki ended. Maybe the real reason why he insisted on being by his side at that time was out of sympathy? He was afraid that maybe Shizu figured it out, his crush on Yuki and all that but he couldn't be sure because not even once did Shizusumi mention it.

 

Shizusumi hasn't complained once. He always reached out for Hiiragi's hand and squeezed it tightly just as when they were kids. Sometimes he just ruffled his hair to let him know it was okay. 

 

Their hang outs were usually silent. When you know someone your entire life it's easy to read them and know what they are thinking. Yet somehow Hiiragi still couldn't read his friend that well. 

 

He knew that to Shizu he was an open book. Just a glance and the drummer would immediately know exactly or at least close to what his friend was feeling. 

 

If only Hiiragi could say the same...Shizu was a fun, gentle, strong and determined guy he knew as much. He got to see soft and caring parts of Shizusumi no one else did. Because Yuki and Mafuyu hanged a lot and always did everything together it left Shizu and Hiiragi hanging out a lot as well. 

 

Thinking about it now if he could go back in time he would try and stop chasing after Yuki. He would stop and let go of the things he can't have and instead focus on what he has. He has a kind and gentle angel right at his side. A person that not even once left his side. A person that held him close when no one else would. A person that accepted him the way he is. A person that was genuinely good to him.

 

A person he slowly started falling in love with without even realizing it.

 

  •  

 

"You...what?" Shizusumi sat down next to Hiiragi. 

 

"I...saw Mafuyu today." Hiiragi hid his face in his hands, breathing deeply.

 

"Did you talk to him?" 

 

"No…" the bassist mumbled, "He ran away as soon as he saw me…" 

 

"It's okay...he must have been shocked." Shizusumi tried to comfort his friend.

 

"He hates me." Hiiragi felt a tear roll down his cheek. Fucking crybaby.

 

To be honest if he was in Mafuyu's spot he'd probably hate himself as well. He knew everything and yet he remained silent. He knew that him and Yuki were dating. He knew about every single detail and yet he kept it all to himself. He hated himself for that.

 

He tried to get in touch with Mafuyu so many times but his friend blocked him on all social media and seemingly changed his number.

 

Hiiragi had no right to blame him. Yuki's death hit him hard like a truck... it was hard to imagine how Mafuyu must have felt. To find your boyfriend's hanging body just after you had a small fight.

 

He probably blamed himself too. Hiiragi thought and at that moment he wanted to run away and find his childhood friend. He wanted to run to him and pull him in a tight hug no matter how out of character it might have looked or sounded. He wanted to apologize and let him know it was not his fault...but he didn't. And right now he regrets that too. He regrets not knowing what to do and how to control his emotions.

 

If it wasn't for the drummer interrupting Hiiragi, he would keep on overthinking things which would only cause more regrets.

 

"Hm? Did you say something Shizu-chan?" He mumbled.

 

The other boy sighed and shook his head. "Forget it...let's go."

 

"Where to?" Hiiragi looked at the drummer. He had to blink so the tears wouldn't spill.

 

"Don't look at me with such a pained expression…"Shizusumi begged him, "We're going home. It's been a long day hasn't it? You must be tired."

 

"Yeah...yeah I am." Hiiragi sighed and got up. 

 

  •  

 

"Are you sure about it?" Shizu gave the other boy a questionable look but the bassist just nodded. 

 

"Yeah. I'll be back before you know it." He turned around and waved his friend goodbye.

 

Shizusumi nodded, "Yeah...good luck." 

 

"I'll go talk to Mafuyu today!" The drummer recalled his friend saying. He wasn't quite sure what got into him but he's been super hyped up the entire day.

 

Shizu knew Hiiragi's been blaming himself for Yuki's death. He wasn't quite sure why though. It's not like he could have done anything. Especially because he was as well on his deathbed at the time of fight.

 

Shizusumi knew about Hiiragi's hanahaki...he knew it was for Yuki. Even a blind person could see it. 

How his eyes sparkled when the other boy smiled. How he always went along with Yuki's ideas even when they sounded totally absurd and impossible.

 

Ever since childhood Mafuyu, Yuki, Shizusumi and Hiiragi have been friends but Mafuyu and Yuki were a pack and they couldn't be separated no matter how much you tried. They were both perfect for each other and it was crystal clear. 

 

Shizusumi was hundred percent sure Hiiragi knew that as well yet still...his gaze was always following Yuki. His eyes were always on Yuki and Yuki only.

 

Even when two of them were alone Hiiragi could be found ranting about Yuki.

 

" Why are these two always hanging out alone these days." He sighed.

 

Shizu patted his friend's head. "They probably want some space so we should leave them be."

 

It made Shizusumi extremely jealous. It seems like everyone and everything is revolving around Yuki. It's not as if he had any right to complain tho. Yuki really was a genuinely good soul and was there for Shizusumi everytime the drummer needed help. He was kind and treated everyone equally. He was a ray of sunshine that blinded everyone with positivity.

 

But then there was another side of him...the one only three of his closest friend's got to see. The depressed one…

 

Yuki was extroverted but most of the time it left him emotionally drained. He'd be a mess during band practices and break down completely. 

 

School also put a lot of pressure on him which just made him a bigger mess. He pretended it was all fine though. He dealt with his problems by pushing them aside until they exploded.

 

And that's exactly what happened. When Mafuyu chose a different high school, Yuki focused on music and his part time job 24/7. It made both Yuki and Mafuyu pissed beyond words.

 

They wouldn't meet as much and when they did they would fight. More than anything they would fight about music because Mafuyu was sure it was a band that kept them apart. Little did anyone know that a small fight will be the one thing that'll break them apart and change their lives forever.

 

Shizusumi was aware Yuki knew about Mafuyu's secret passion for music. He would stare so lovingly when the other boy hummed to himself it made Shizusumi jealous. Mainly because whenever he'd look at Yuki who had that lovesick expression he'd see Hiiragi with the exact same lovesick expression staring at Yuki.

 

It made Shizu's heart break.

 

How could someone who was sitting right next to him...someone who was so close that it hurt...how could he feel so distant?

 

Shizusumi wanted to take Hiiragi for himself and pull him tight. He wanted him to be looked at the same way Yuki was.

 

But he wasn't Yuki...and he will never be. 

 

All of these thoughts made his head hurt, he thought it'd explode. At least he kept his promise of keeping Hiiragi alive...but at what cost? This was definitely a win-lose situation and Shizusumi knew that.

 

  •  

 

There they were once again. Hiiragi curled up on Shizusumi's side sobbing against the other boy's back. "He hates me Shizu."

 

"He never said that." Shizusumi replied, turning to face his friend.

 

"Yeah but it was implied." bassist buried his face in Shizu's chest.

 

"Stop it you cry baby he doesn't hate you.'' The drummer sighed and ran his hand through his friend's hair. "Now stop whining you've been like this ever since I came to pick you up."

 

"I just want things to go back to the way they were." A trembling sigh escaped the older boy's mouth.

 

"You want to go back in time when you had hanahaki?" 

 

"Yes." Hiiragi looked at Shizusumi with a tear eyed expression, "Because...maybe if it was I that died Mafuyu and Yuki would still be together. Yuki would still be alive and Mafuyu couldn't hate me because I'd be dead."

 

Shizusumi stared at his friend wide eyed for a long time. He somehow managed to find the right words and ask, "What about me?"

 

"You wouldn't have to deal with me all the time...I'm sorry I know that I can be a handful."

 

"Don't say that." Shizu shouted and pulled the other one closer, "You can be annoying from time to time but you are not a handful. I would have left you a long time ago if your presence bothered me, Hiiragi."

 

"Thank you." Hiiragi choked on his tears, "Please keep on being here for me."

 

  •  

 

Shizusumi laid on his bed staring at the ceiling. He could hear his foster family shout downstairs. "Could you shut up for a second?" He whispered, biting his lip anxiously.

 

Fights like these were nothing new. Shizusumi hasn't experienced anything but pain being a foster kid. He was getting yelled on for things he had no control over. Sometimes he wasn't even included in fights but everytime he heard yelling he just couldn't help it but to blame himself.

 

Let's not even mention Hiiragi who would come over a lot. 

Shizu's foster family would act nice and all but as soon as the bassist left screaming would continue. The same thing that was happening at that moment.

 

I promised I will be here for you but...will you be here for me? Shizu sighed. 

He wanted Hiiragi to stay. He wanted him to stay forever. 

 

He wanted to run far away with him where no one knew them and start a life together but how could he when Hiiragi was so obviously still in love with Yuki despite the ex-vocalist's death.

 

"Stop it already." He told himself, "Stop thinking about Yuki dammit. He's dead." 

 

He put his arm over his eyes and sighed. "I know he is… and I miss him...Yuki what am I supposed to do?" He bit his lip a little bit from rage and a bit from fear. "You always knew what to do. I'm so fucking jelaous of you man but-" he stopped himself and shook his head, "I hope you're finally getting some rest." 

 

  •  

 

Hiiragi knew stubbornness annoyed Mafuyu, yet here he was. Standing in the rain calling him to hang out.

 

As stupid as it sounded he stood in front of his friend's flat for about ten minutes before texting him. He hadn't let Mafuyu know Yuki's mom gave him his number because if he knew...well let's just say Hiiragi doesn't doubt Mafuyu would change it again.

 

"Why isn't that punk answering his phone dammit!" He swore and picked up the small rock from the ground.

 

He admired it for a second thinking that maybe his life wouldn't be so complicated if he was born as a rock. He pushed the thought of himself as a rock away and threw it at Mafuyu's window hoping it gets other boy's attention,

 

-And he was right.

 

A second after Mafuyu's frowning face was looking at him painfully.

They stared at each other for a solid ten seconds before Mafuyu finally picked up the phone. 

 

"Hello?" Mafuyu spoke.

 

"Mafuyu. Hey." Hiiragi spoke, his heart racing. "Come hang out with me for a bit."

 

  •  

 

They were standing next to each other for some time before Hiiragi sat down and patted a seat next to him but Mafuyu didn't move. They stared blankly at each other until finally Mafuyu broke the silence.

 

"Why now? Why bother with me?" He asked, "You've just been standing on the sidelines this whole time."

 

Hiiragi looked down. He was aware of the situation. But to answer Mafuyu's question he didn't know either. He wanted to be there for his friends but just like Mafuyu said he was always on the sidelines...he regrets that now.

 

"You're right." He replied coldly, "I didn't do anything. Even when you and Yuki started going out...I knew everything," He admitted, "but I didn't say a word. And now, I regret that."

 

Mafuyu had no reply to give to his childhood friend so he just remained silent staring at the ground with a pained expression.

 

The sight in front of his eyes pained Hiiragi.

 

"Hey, I get how you feel, bu-"

 

"YOU HAVE NO IDEA HOW I FEEL!" Mafuyu shouted and Hiiragi stared at him wide eyed.

 

Hiiragi felt his heart break. He moved his trembling hands and cupped his face in them, "You're right. I don't."

 

But I can try to understand. He thought. I was there when the fight happened, that- that should mean something right? He tried convincing himself but he didn't succeed. Mafuyu was dating Yuki after all...and all Hiiragi did was stand aside and watch them. He didn't even try reaching out to Mafuyu… I'm such a horrible person.

 

"And I regret that right now, too."

 

Silence occured them once again and Hiiragi sighed.

 

"I knew everything." His voice trembled in anxiety, "I knew everything and yet-"

 

He couldn't find the words. He was sure no words could explain his actions. When he saw Mafuyu's body move, Hiiragi was sure he was going to run away again. Run as far away as possible from Hiiragi and once again cut ties with him. He was sure...until he saw him sit next to him.

 

"We're doing a show on Sunday." Mafuyu said out of nowhere.

 

Hiiragi looked up. He blinked in surprise. "You're okay with me being there?" He asked.

 

"Yeah." Mafuyu nodded.

 

"Can Shizu come too?" Hiiragi asked.

 

"Invite Shizu-chan, too." Mafuyu smiled softly.

 

Hiiragi stared at his friend for a while. He was glad but he still felt a ton of regret riding on his shoulders. 

 

"I took my frustration on you." Mafuyu sighed.

 

Hiiragi nodded but how could he blame Mafuyu? Mafuyu had every right to be angry with him.

 

"Earlier, I said you had no idea how I felt. But the truth is... I'm the one who has no idea how I feel. I didn't want to face how I really felt, so I've been avoiding it."

Mafuyu said which just earned him the hit on the head from Hiiragi. 

 

"Ow!?" He pouted.

 

Hiiragi smiled widely, "You dummy."

 

And just like that he felt as if things were back to normal.

 

"Call me sometime, you dumbass."

 

"'Kay." Mafuyu nodded. "Thanks..."

 

Hiiragi bit his lip and waved his friend back. 

 

Hiiragi Kashima wants to be forgiven. It doesn't matter by who...He just wants to be forgiven. 

 

But more than anyone else he wants Mafuyu to forgive him. 

 

  •  

 

"What?" Shizusumi's eyes widened. 

 

"Yeah." Hiiragi chuckled and put his head on the drummer's stomach. "I talked with Mafuyu. I don't think he hates me anymore." 

 

"Is that so?" Shizu patted the other one's head. "You said something about the show?"

 

"Oh yeah!" Hiiragi's face lit up. "He invited us to the show. He'll be performing with his new band." He chuckled, "Can't wait to see that." 

 

"Why are you acting as if it's going to be bad?" 

 

"I-" Hiiragi started but soon Shizu cut him off.

 

"Is it because you're afraid? You are afraid he'll break your heart with his song and you're once again using bitchass atittude as a coping mechanism don't worry I am used to it. But you can't lie to me Kashima. You're happy he finally found a place for himself."

 

"Shut up!" He whined and hid his face. "I hate when you do that!"

 

"Hm?" Shizusumi raised his eyebrow, "Do what? Point out the truth?"

 

"Not that." He pouted, "When you read me like an open book with such ease and yet here I am...I still can't quite tell what you're thinking. I know you're happy for Mafuyu and me but… I feel like there's more to that happiness than I can pinpoint."

 

"Oh really?" Shizu smiled softly.

 

"Yeah!" Hiiragi winced, "It's sooo not fair!"

 

It really isn't huh? 

 

"Don't worry princess this is not something you should break that beautiful little head of yours over." Shizu ruffled his friend's hair rather aggressively.

 

"SHIZU-CHAN!" Hiiragi whined, "Stop bullying me!" 

 

"Oh so now I'm bullying you?" Shizu chuckled.

 

"Did you really think that though?" Hiiragi took Shizu's hand and placed it in his hair

 

"Hm?" 

 

"That I have a beautiful head?" Hiiragi smirked.

 

"Oh shush it." Shizu rolled his eyes running his hand through the bassist's dyed hair.

 

He appreciated little moments like these when they had nothing to worry about. When they could just enjoy each other's presence joking and having fun. 

But it also pained him. It pained him because moments like this always made him fall in love a little bit more.

 

"Hey, Shizu?" 

 

"Yes princess?" 

 

"What kind of song do you think Mafuyu is going to sing?"

 

"Hm…" Shizu thought for a second. Chances were high it was going to be a heartbreak song for Yuki. Shizusumi didn't doubt it in the slightest but he had no heart to say it out loud. He wanted Hiiragi to think as positively as possible.

 

"I don't know."

 

  •  

 

Here it was. The big day has finally arrived and two boys made their way to their childhood friend's show.

 

"Gah-" Hiiragi pulled his hair, "I'm so nervous."

 

"Stop acting as if it's you performing." Shizu patted him on the shoulder. "Even when it is you on stage you're not THIS nervous so calm down. Mafuyu will be fine."

 

"How could I not worry though?" Hiiragi snorted. "He's my friend."

 

"He's your best friend." Shizusumi corrected him.

 

"If we're going to correct each other then he is OUR best friend." Hiiragi crossed his arms. 

 

"Let's hurry up. We don't wanna be late now do we?"

 

"Yeah sure." Hiiragi said and followed Shizusumi in a hurry.

 

They found themselves a nice place in the back with not many people around them but just good enough to see the show.

 

"Soo… when's Mafuyu's band gonna play?" Hiiragi yawned after the band who was supposed to play before Seasons' only-god-knew-which-in-the-row song

 

"Soon I guess." Shizu shrugged. "Be patient."

 

And before Hiiragi could reply with one of his sarcastic remarks about how he can't wait anymore Seasons walked on the stage and he froze in place.

 

Seeing Mafuyu on stage filled Hiiragi with so many emotions. He was scared and worried for his friend but at the same time so proud. 

 

When he saw Mafuyu with Yuki's guitar on his back that day Hiiragi was surprised. He thought that after everything Mafuyu would grow to hate music with even deeper passion but guess he was wrong because just a few days after he learnt Mafuyu joined a band.

 

It all left him shocked but strangely happy.

 

They waited for a while until it happened. And even when it did Hiiragi was not ready.

 

One "Mada~" was just enough to send shivers down Hiiragi's entire body.

 

Hiiragi spent the entire show with tears streaming down his face.

 

  •  

 

The show left Hiiragi feeling heartbroken. 

 

"Are you alright?" Shizusumi asked his friend.

 

"Yeah...yeah I'm fine." Bassit replied. "There is something I need to do now. Can you wait here a second?" He turned around not waiting for the drummer to answer and ran away. He ran into the darkness hoping to find Mafuyu.

 

He didn't necessarily need to tell him anything. He just wanted to make sure his friend was okay. 

 

And just like he predicted he found Mafuyu sitting alone. 

 

The bassist approached him carefully and fought back the tears, "Hey." He kicked his friend's leg.

 

Mafuyu looked up with glassy eyes. "Why are you looking at me like that?"

 

"Shut up." He looked away as he sat down next to Mafuyu.

 

"Yuki knew that you liked music." Fuck. He had no idea why he said that. He just wanted to let his friend know...but why now?

 

"His eyes were always glued to you whenever you'd randomly start humming something." He continued, "Yuki wanted to write a song for you."

 

Saying this hurt Hiiragi. It pained him...but a part of him wanted to let Mafuyu know that even when Yuki wasn't able to hang out with him he was still thinking about him. That he still loved him...the way Hiiragi loved Yuki.

 

Hiiragi let out a snort, "But you wanted him to say "Let's do this together," didn't you?" 

 

Mafuyu closed his eyes and Hiiragi took it as a sign to shut the fuck up. By saying all this he wasn't only hurting Mafuyu(which was not his intention)...he was also hurting himself.

 

"Hiiragi…" Mafuyu spoke softly. "How was the show?" 

 

Hiiragi laughed, shifting closer to Mafyuu and trying to change the mood, "You sucked ass dude. Your fingers were barely moving."

 

"Hiiragi."

 

"What?" He looked at his friend.

 

"I have someone new that I like." Mafuyu admitted.

 

Hiiragi glanced at his friend and gave him an encouraging smile, "That's good isn't it? Then do your best."

 

"Please continue to support me." Mafuyu looked at the starry sky.

 

"How troublesome." Hiiragi chuckled and Mafuyu laughed looking at Hiiragi.

 

Things finally felt normal between them again and Hiiragi couldn't be more grateful.

 

  •  

 

"Uh? Hiiragi!?" Shizu turned around as Hiiragi made his way back. He knew where Hiiragi was headed all along and he didn't hide it. "Were you able to talk to Mafu-"

 

But before he could finnish what he was about to ask Hiiragi broke down sobbing and whining. He ran towards Shizusumi and wrapped his arms around the drummer's neck. "I'm so happy Mafuyu was able to sing!"

 

Instead of replying and saying anything else Shizusumi just sighed and wrapped his arms around Hiiragi, "It's okay…" he mumbled and after some time Hiiragi finally calmed down a little.

 

"Let's go home." Shizu said and Hiiragi nodded.

 

"Yeah...let's go." He smiled and looked at the sky. Stars seemed to shine extra bright tonight.

  •  

 

Shizusumi was sitting at his desk finishing up his homework when he got a message from his bassist. 

 

'Are you ready for the festival tomorrow!? ฅ^•ﻌ•^ฅ'

 

Shizusumi groaned and typed a simple 'Yes. See you at seven right?'

 

'yes don't be late.'

 

If there was one thing Shizusumi didn't want to do then that was go to the festival because he was currently drowning in the sea of work he had to get done but for Hiiragi he would do anything and so when the bassist approached him with the idea Shizusumi immediately said yes.

 

He didn't even think what was he saying he just immediately agreed...as he always does. 

 

Because when Hiiragi comes up to him with that cursed grin of his shiny golden eyes...how is he supposed to decline? 

 

He's not sure what happens next but suddenly tears are streaming down his face which surprises the drummer because he was never the kind of person who lets his emotions out.

 

"Wh-what?" Shizu blinked rapidly which just caused more tears to spill. But there's something more to all of this. The tears made a crystalline sound when they hit paper.

 

Once he finally stopped crying he looked at his homework which was now soaked in glittery water.

 

He noticed these were no ordinary tears because tears are not supposed to shine and make any sort of sound.

 

"They look like stars…" he whispered to himself. 

 

He took the paper and threw it in the trash basket under his desk. "What in the world…"

 

It all confused Shizusumi beyond words. First he starts crying out of the blue and then those same tears don't even look real.

 

He quickly pulled up his laptop and opened the Chrome searcher. 

 

He types in 'star tears' and the first thing that showed up was an article about something called "Star tear disease." He read out loud.

 

Shizusumi's eyes scanned the website.

 

Star tear disease is a disease similar to hanahaki. Unlike hanahaki it's not deadly but once damage is done it cannot be cured.

 

The illness born from subjects of unrequited love in which the patient starts to cry coloured tears similar to stars; hence the name. Along with the coloured tears, often there is a crystalline sound or similar noises when a tear shatters on a solid plan.

 

The disease affects the victim's eyes, making them lose sight of colors one by one and, in rare cases, make the victim lose sight.

 

The illness would disappear if the victim got their feelings required romantically and not in the matter of friendship. Although the damage already done won't disappear.

 

(source: urban dictionary)

 

Shizusumi felt his body freeze. He got flashbacks of the time Hiiragi had hanahaki. 

Back when that was the case he considered himself lucky for not having such a deadly disease himself considering his situation.

 

He shouldn't have thought that seeing he only jinxed himself.

 

Shizusumi let out a trembling sigh, burying his face in his hands.

He closed the tab with all the details.

 

"Well...at least it's not deadly." He shrugged. "I just have to be careful to not cry in front of others."

 

  •  

 

Turns out star tear disease occurs more frequently than Shizusumi thought because just the next day, thirty minutes before he was supposed to meet Hiiragi he found himself crying on the bathroom floor. He tried to stop it but nothing worked. Tears just simply kept on spilling and hitting the floor. He was afraid his foster family might hear the unusual melody but even if they did they didn't care enough to go check.

 

Luckily it stopped after a few minutes and Shizu could finally relax. He cleaned the mess and rushed out of the bathroom. 

 

Halfway to the festival Shizusumi felt his phone vibrate  through the back pocket of his jeans.

 

'Where are you!?(ᗒᗣᗕ)՞'

Turns out it was just a text from Hiiragi.

 

'On my way.'

 

  •  

 

"On his way my ass." Hiiragi snorted after receiving a message. 

 

He arrived about thirty minutes earlier since he promised Mafuyu to help him with his yukata. They stayed to chat for a while afterwards as they waited for their number two.

 

Hiiragi was glad he and Mafuyu got along again. It felt nice being able to sit with his best friend again and just chat about anything. Even if it meant having to listen to Mafuyu about his new boyfriend.

 

It's not that Hiiragi was not happy about Mafuyu. Actually it was completely opposite. He was indeed extremely happy. Mafuyu moved on and was doing better mentally it's just that he just couldn't help but to be skeptical about Uenoyama. He looked like a nice guy but definitely not Hiiragi's type.

 

"Hiiragi." A familiar voice made Hiiragi twitch in surprise.

 

"Shizu! Where were you?" Hiiragi pouted. 

 

"Sorry something happened." Shizu apologized and reached out his hand for Hiiragi.

 

Hiiragi took it and got up still pouting, "Let's go we'll be late for fireworks."

 

"Yeah." Shizu nodded and the two of them made their way to the nice and empty place where they could watch fireworks from.

 

They sat down just as the fireworks started. Hiiragi looked at the sky smiling. 

 

"Woah…" he gasped, "That's so epic."

 

"Mhm." Shizu agreed, "It's really beautiful."

 

Hiiragi glanced at Shizusumi who had a barely visible smile on his face and the bassist felt his heart skip a beat.

 

Damn he's so beautiful.

 

"You didn't say anything…" he noted.

 

"Hm?" Shizu looked at his friend.

 

"About my yukata." Hiiragi crossed his arms.

 

"Oh yeah." Shizu rubbed his neck, "It looks good on you."

 

"Why, thank you." Hiiragi smirked and leaned his head on Shizusumi's shoulder. 

 

Damn damn damn I wanna stay like this forever. 

 

"You were with Mafuyu weren't you?"

Shizu asked.

 

"Mhm." Hiiragi nodded. "He's also somewhere here."

 

"Hm?" Shizu raised his eyebrow, "Really? Why didn't he come hang out with us then?"

 

Hiiragi shrugged and replied with the first lie that came to his mind, "Said he was busy."

 

"Ah." Shizu nodded. "I see."

 

As much as Hiiragi didn't want to lie he didn't see any other way to tell Shizu Mafuyu was unavailable without telling the drummer about their friend's date.

 

Since Shizusumi didn't know about Uenoyama and Hiiragi only knew bits and pieces he didn't feel like it was his place to let him know. Besides if Mafuyu wanted to tell him about his new boyfriend that badly he probably would already.

 

"Wanna come over tonight?" Hiiragi asked.

 

"Sure…" Shizu replied and they stayed at the festival for the next hour or two. Hiiragi didn't know how much time passed but the time he spent with Shizu made him extremely happy.

 

  •  

 

"GAH!" Hiiragi pulled his hair, "I'm so nervoussssss!" He whined(as usual).

 

"Calm down." Shizu replied, "We'll do okay."

 

"Yeah I know." Hiiragi said, "But still…"

 

"No buts." Shizu hit his friend lightly with drum sticks. 

 

"I know it's just." Hiiragi sighed, "Yuki…"

 

"As if it's our first time performing since Yuki died." Shizusumi replied coldly.

 

"I know but...this is CAC after all. We don't even have a permanent guitarist."

 

"We have time." Shizu hit his friend again. "Don't worry."

 

"I guess you're right." Hiiragi sighed.

 

"Mafuyu's band is also performing right?" Shizu asked.

 

"Mhm. Tomorrow actually. Why do you ask?"

 

"Cause he's right there." Shizu pointed to Mafuyu who was getting a ticket with another boy their age.

 

"Mafuyu!" Hiiragi called out and Mafuyu turned in surprise.

 

"Hiiragi!" He waved and made his way to the two boys.

 

The three of them began chatting while the other guy made his way towards Mafuyu.

 

"Oh Uenoyama-kun!" Mafuyu looked at the black haired boy. "These are my childhood friends." He introduced them, "Shizusumi and Hiiragi. They are both participating as well. They'll be performing today."

 

"Ah, hello." Uenoyama greeted the boys.

 

"I've told you about Uenoyama-kun haven't I?" Mafuyu smiled. "My boyfriend."

 

Uenoyama choked on air and Hiiragi already grew to not liking the guy. 

 

"He's the guitarist in our band." Mafuyu explained.

 

"Eh…" Shizu's eyes widened. "Boyfriend?"

 

"Oh, this is the first time you've seen him huh, Shizu-chan?" 

 

Mafuyu turned to Uenoyama, "We've ran into Hiiragi before, remember?"

 

Uenoyama stared at his boyfriend blankly. 

 

"Eh...don't you remember?" Mafuyu wondered.

 

"Gross." Hiiragi pouted and turned to the side.

 

"Eh." Mafuyu said as he is already used to Hiiragi's bullshit.

 

"Ha?!" Uenoyama glared at the bassist from another band.

 

"Whatever," Hiiragi waved his hand, "Whatever why're you here anyway? Aren't you guys performing tomorrow? You're taking it easy, huh?" He chuckled, "What about practice? After all you're high schoolers could it be that you feel like you're guests~"

 

Uenoyama pointed at Hiiragi, disgusted.

 

"Uh-huuh." Mafuyu nodded. "I feel you."

 

"Even so…" Hiiragi continued, "There sure are a lot of people. Ever been to watch a contest like this before Uenoyama-kun?"

 

"No," the guitarist shook his head, "This is my first time."

 

"Yeah, it's our first time as well, but it's quite similar to a regular live than what I'd imagined."

 

"Probably because this is a normal live house and not any special kind of venue." Uenoyama replied.

 

"I expected the contest to be more like that..." Mafuyu joined the conversation. "I'd vaguely imagined it would be like a typical audition."

 

"Well it's supposed to be." Hiiragi replied.

 

"The format today is that the audience gets to choose their favorite through a voting system." Uenoyama added on. 

 

"See that piece of paper?" Uenyoama pointed at the paper everyone was holding. "Everyone's got one from reception. Apparently this way the results will be revealed immediately after voting."

 

"He~eh." The other three nodded.

 

"Oi!" Uenoyama backed away, "It's weird how you all reacted the same way!"

 

"Mmh alright then, we're gonna go meet up with the rest of our team." Hiiragi explained.

 

"Ah! Tell me later what change over is like." Mafuyu said.

 

"Yea-" Hiiragi agreed.

 

"Good luck." Mafuyu wished.

 

Hiiragi smirked, pointing Uenoyama his middle finger, "Just watch."

 

"Just where is all that confidence coming from?" Mafuyu mumbled, "Hiiragi is always really lively isn't he-" 

 

  •  

 

"I see someone regained their confidence." Shizu commented. "Also you haven't told me Mafuyu had a new boyfriend."

 

Hiiragi shrugged, "I wanted him to tell you."

 

"Yeah...ok." Shizu looked away. "Let's just go meet others already."

 

Hiiragu stared at Shizu for a second stopping in his tracks.

 

Is he angry over something?

 

He shook the thought away and followed his drummer.

 

  •  

 

"We did pretty good." Hiiragi stretched and let himself fall on Shizusumi's bed, burying his face in one of his friend's pillows.

 

"Yeah...even though it was pretty exhausting." Shizusumi admitted and sat next to the bassist.

 

"Cpamistpajopvesr?" Hiiragi spoke into the pillow.

 

"I can't hear you Kashima." Shizusumi rolled his eyes. 

 

"Can I stay over?" Hiiragi lifted his head up.

 

"...Can you not?" Shizu turned to the bassist.

 

The wave of shock hit Hiiragi. Did Shizu not want him over? Was he really THAT angry? Over what? 

 

"Are you...angry at me?" Hiiragi blinked in confusion.

 

"I just need some time...besides I don't think my foster family will agree."

 

"Why wouldn't they? I mean- they never had anything against me before…"

 

"Please...just go home." Shizu said coldly.

 

"Alright." Hiiragi looked away and got up.

 

Shizusumi declining his request hurt him way more than it should have. 

 

Maybe he's just tired…

 

Maybe he's angry?

 

Maybe he hates you…

 

"Good night Shizusumi." Hiiragi waved the drummer goodbye without looking back a single time.

 

  •  

 

"Fuck!" Shizusumi cursed. Star tears streamed down his face. It's not that he didn't want Hiiragi to stay over. Completely opposite actually, he did want his crush to spend the night with him. "Who knows- who knows what he'll think now." Shizu put his arm over his eyes trying to stop glittery water from streaming down his face.

 

The reason why Shizusumi declined his friend's request was because he was afraid he'd get caught and his secret disease wouldn't be a secret anymore.

 

He had the disease for quite some time now and it was indeed getting worse. He was slowly turning colorblind and it scared him. What if he turns completely blind? How will he ever play in a band again? What will connect him and Hiiragi then, huh?

 

"Stop." He begged someone, anyone but he knew very well there was no one who could help him with his unrequited love problem.

 

  •  

 

Hiiragi spent the past hour and half laying on Mafuyu's bed ranting. It was almost midnight by now.

 

"And then he just told me to go home." Bassist pouted, "Whatcha think Mafu-chan? Does Shizu hate me?"

 

"Stop assuming everyone who doesn't want to talk to you hates you." Mafuyu said petting Kedama. "You can be a pain in the ass from time to time."

 

Kedama barked in agreement.

 

"Yeah, I know...he just always gives signals like he's not listening...and as if he's not even interested in me." Hiiragi sighed.

 

Mafuyu's eyes widened and he grinned, "So you ARE interested in Shizu?"

 

"Hm?" Hiiragi looked up, "What do you mean?"

 

"You like Shizu-chan!" Mafuyu pointed at his friend.

 

Hiiragi felt his face go completely red, "What?! No! Of course not. He's just my best friend."

 

"If he was ONLY your best friend then you wouldn't get whiny about something irrelevant like this." Mafuyu clicked his tongue, "Besides have you even bothered asking why he declined you?"

 

"He said he's busy…" Hiiragi mumbled.

 

"Maybe he is." Mafuyu shrugged, "Don't overthink it or you might hurt your brain."

 

"You little-" Hiiragi clenched his fist.

 

"If you crave company so badly you can stay here." Mafuyu suggested, "But I'm waking up early so keep that in mind."

 

"Nah don't worry 'bout that." Hiiragi got up, "Thanks for listening to me though. Can I have my jacket back?"

 

"Oh, sure!" Mafuyu grabbed the jacket and tossed it to Hiiragi. "Thanks for letting me borrow it. I didn't expect to get cold after the show."

 

"All good." Hiiragi put on the jacket and waved his friend a goodbye.

 

  •  

 

"So how were we?" Hiiragi painted grinning. 

 

"You were great Hiiragi." Mafuyu smiled, "You too Shizu-chan."

 

"Thanks." Shizusumi thanked his childhood friend.

 

"So Uenoyama-kun," Hiiragi turned to the Given's guitarist. "How'd you like the performance?" 

 

Uenoyama glared at the bassist, "You...weren't bad. I'm actually quite surprised."

 

"Aw no need to flatter me." Hiiragi stuck out his tongue. "I know, we were absolutely amazing."

 

"You had a breakdown before the performance because you were nervous." Shizusumi pointed out.

 

"SHIZU!" 

 

"Anyways good luck to you two and your band tomorrow." Shizusumi patted Mafuyu's shoulder.

 

"Thanks." Mafuyu said. His lip trembled a little. 

 

"Woah you okay?" Uenoyama asked his boyfriend.

 

"Yeah," Mafuyu nodded, "just a little cold." 

 

"Eh?" Hiiragi raised a brow, "Do you want my jacket?" 

 

"Can I?" Mafuyu smiled.

 

Hiiragi glanced at Uenoyama who was glaring at the bassist, jealousy. Hiiragi smirked and took off his jacket. He wasn't cold in the slightest so he didn't mind Mafuyu borrowing it. Also this way he can mock Uenoyama how Mafuyu is wearing HIS jacket.

 

"Thanks Hiiragi." Mafuyu smiled and put on his best friend's jacket.

 

"Yeah no problem." Hiiragi smiled in return and as soon as the freezing boy looked away, Hiiragi took the chance to flip off Uenoyama.

 

"Anyways, we should go." Uenoyama clicked his tongue.

 

"Hm?" Mafuyu looked at his boyfriend.

 

"Let's go Mafuyu. It was nice meeting you two." Uenoyama smiled bitterly and Hiiragi stuck out his tongue at the guitarist.

 

"Oh?" Mafuyu blinked and turned to his two friends, "I'll return you your jacket as soon as I can."

 

"Yeah sure." Hiiragi waved the other two goodbye as they walked away.

 

"HA! I sure showed that Uenoyama haven't I?" 

 

"What did you accomplish by that?" Shizusumi asked.

 

"Huh? Didn't you see how jealous I made him when I gave Mafuyu MY jacket."

 

"Aren't you gonna get cold?" The drummer rubbed his neck awkwardly.

 

"Nah, I'm immune to cold." 

 

"Last year you almost froze to death." Shizu pointed out.

 

"Duh- I had a deadly disease." Hiiragi said as if it was nothing.

 

"Whatever." Shizusumi shook his head, "We should head home."

 

"Yeah." Hiiragi nodded and followed Shizusumi to his house."

 

  •  

 

"You're late." Hiiragi sighed.

 

"I'm sorry." Shizusumi apologized, "Something happened. Let's go-"

 

"Something's up with you lately." Hiiragi points out. "You are always late, you spend less and less time with me I- did I do something?" 

 

"It's not you." Shizusumi lied. Of course you did something. You are still doing it. You are shining so bright it sets my heart on fire.  

 

Why did it hurt so much…? When he first googled about symptomes of so called star tear disease he read one of the possible side effects is going color blind. How it worked for Shizu was that he couldn't see shades of colors as good as he used to and his vision slowly turned into dirty shades of gray. First color that disappeared from his sight was blue and then purple. He could see every other color but they were all slowly disappearing. Only ones left he could still see were bright and clear and were red, green and yellow.

 

"Then why?" Hiiragi pouted.

 

Shizu laughed, "You're angry I didn't let you stay aren't you?"

 

"Of course not. I get it, I can be a pain in the ass but...why so suddenly?"

 

"Sorry, something escalated and-"

 

"What?" 

 

"Hm?" Shizu lifted his head up. 

 

"You always say "something happened" but you never bother explaining what that something is." 

 

"Doesn't matter." Shizu sighed and started walking.

 

"Don't you ignore me now." Hiiragi reached to stop him but the other boy just pushed his hand away.

 

"Don't...just...don't." Shizu looked at his crush's eyes. They were shining gold and it felt as if Shizusumi was drowning in them. 

 

"Okay…" Hiiragi sighs and they walked in silence to the Given's CAC performance to cheer on their childhood friend, his boyfriend and their bandmates.

 

  •  

 

Hiiragi was in pain. Not physical pain. He was in emotional pain. His chest hurt and he felt weird. As if someone took a match and lit him up on fire until he melts completely. 

 

He wanted to cry, he wanted to scream, he wanted to laugh, he wanted to smile, he wanted to yell. He wanted so many things he didn't think this was normal.

 

Everything inside him hurt but it felt strangely good. It was not the kind of pain he experienced while he had hanahaki, it was the kind of pain that made him feel excited. 

Although he wasn't sure if pain was supposed to make a person feel excited.

 

Walking after Shizu felt strangely relaxing even though they just had a small fight. If you even can call that a fight. 

 

To be honest it relieved him. He knew Shizusumi wasn't angry at him. He could tell by the tone of his voice. It made Hiiragi glad.

 

The only thing bothering him was the fact Shizusumi probably didn't trust him enough to tell him what was bothering him. Look, the drummer( a very hot drummer btw) could try and hide that something was wrong but Hiiragi knew him long enough to be able to tell when he was being upset about something. Now, knowing something was wrong didn't mean Hiiragi knew what that something was and it was eating him alive. 

 

Damn, I wanna hug him to let him know whatever he is going through right now will end up fine.

 

No…

 

I wanna be there for him. 

 

Yeah...I wanna be there for Shizu.

 

Huh, maybe I do like him a little.

 

  •  

 

Hiiragi buried his face in his hands trying to hide all of the tears that were streaming down. 

 

"Don't be a crybaby." Shizu slapped him on the back and they walked away.

 

"I-" Hiiragi sniffed, "It's just that Mafuyu singed so beautifully." 

 

"You sing pretty well too?" 

 

"It's not about me today." Hiiragi wiped his eyes, "Anyways let's go find the lovebirds."

 

Shizusumi nodded and ruffled the bassist's head.

 

He envied Hiiragi so much. He could cry so peacefully and look so cute while doing so. It looked relaxing to Shizu as if he's pushing all of the pain away and being reborn… he envied that feeling of freedom after a good cry because with his disease crying only made him feel worse. Both physically and mentally.

 

"Mafuyu!" Hiiragi waved to his friend. "My son you were so good." 

 

"Are you crying-" 

 

Two of them started chatting like two friends that haven't seen each other in years.

 

The drummer just stood behind and his emotions got the best of him. Starry tears slowly ran down his cheeks...too bad no one cared enough to notice. They never did. 

 

  •  

 

"I have a suggestion." Hiiragi said, sitting next to the drummer.

 

"Hm?" Shizu raised his eyebrow while munching on his noodles.

 

"Let's invite Uenoyama to play as support in our band."

 

Shizusumi stared at his friend blankly. "What?"

 

"I mean- as much as I hate to admit he plays very well and I think we'd work together pretty okay."

 

"Maybe if you stopped picking fights with him you would." Shizu shrugged.

 

"Don't remind me." Hiiragi winced, "So?"

 

"Okay." Shizu continued to eat.

 

"Hhggh…" Hiiragi pulled his hair, "One more thing."

 

Shizu sighed, "What is it now?"

 

"Remember that song Yuki was writing?" Hiiragi asked but it came off more as a whisper.

 

"Yeah, what about it?" Shizu bit his lip. He didn't like the direction this took. 

No. He hated it.

 

"Well...I was thinking of offering Uenoyama to finnish it…"

 

"And why is that?"

 

"Well...Yuki worked really hard on it you know." Here we go again. Yuki this. Yuki that. Please your love for him almost killed you last time when will you stop? "It would be a shame if nothing came off of that hard work."

 

"If you're so worried about a of the hard working falling in the water why don't YOU finnish it?"

 

"Because it was for Mafuyu you dumbass." Hiiragi cut him off, "And since Uenoyama is dating him now, maybe it would be best if he finishes it. Since it wouldn't be the same if I, who looks at him as my little brother, finished a love song dedicated to him."

 

Shizu stared at the bassist silently and pushed the now empty bowl away. "Do whatever you want but take Uenoyama's feelings into consideration would you?"

 

"Hm? What do you mean?"

 

"Well it is a song from Yuki. Mafuyu's ex boyfriend. Imagine how Uenoyama might feel when he hears it."

 

"He doesn't have to do it if he doesn't want to." Hiiragi notes, "I would probably decline too...I'm just hoping- no. Forget it…"

 

What are you hoping for? Shizu wanted to ask. He wanted to make Hiiragi rethink his choices but he knew that once Hiiragi says something he will just end up rolling along with the idea without a doubt. Like he always fucking does and like he always fucking will. No doubt about it.

 

Shizusumi understood Yuki and his love language very well because his own was in fact very similar. If Hiiragi told him to die he would drop dead on the spot. He'd die peacefully and without any regret.

 

Sometimes he wished that instead of this stupid disease that makes him unable to see colors one by one he could just have hanahaki and die already. Maybe death would hurt less than his unrequited love.

 

  •  

 

"You're filling-in only until we find a new guitarist, like for a little while and perform live, twice or so." Hiiragi sat crossed armed.

 

Uenoyama blinked confused, "If the guitarist quits, isn't it okay to not do any live performance?"

 

"No, we'll do it." Hiiragi decided, "I wanna gain reputation."

 

"So why should I-" Uenoymaa shouted but Hiiragi cut him off before he could finnish.

 

"Because I wanted to try it out with you after seeing you perform at the CAC."

 

Uenoymaa blacked out for a bit and memories of his and Hiiragi's first meeting looked like war flashbacks now.

 

"Hey, I'm inviting you, y'know!" Hiiragi yelled trying to get the guitarist's attention.

"Besides...there's something I want to try out with you."

 

  •  

 

"He-h," Uenoyama crossed his arms trying to keep a straight face without letting his anger out, "so?"

 

"Sssoo," Hiiragi showed himself in the guitarist's face, "I'm telling ya I know about Mafuyu a hundred times more than you!"

 

"Heh-? Does it matter how long you've known him?" Uenoyama glared at the bassist, "By the way, Mafuyu said he thinks of you as his younger sister."

 

Hiiragi growled, "I'll kill him!"

 

"First of all, does any of this have anything to do with our music being out of sync earlier?" Uenoyama asked.

 

"That's why-" Hiiragi pointed at Uenoyama like he's a kindergartener all over again, "That you, not being able to match with me is because there's a problem with you as a human being! ANYWAYS-" he turned to Shizusumi, "Shizu, don't you think that my playing was on point?!"

 

"...aaah." Shizu replied monotonically.

 

"Show a little more interest in me!" Hiiragi whined.

 

"OH JUST SHUT IT!" Uenoyama yelled, "DON'T JUST SNAP AT EVERY LITTLE THING! MAFUYU HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH IT IN THE FIRST PLACE!"

 

"HONESTLY PEOPLE LIKE YOU WHO CAN'T SYNC WITH OTHERS ACTING LIKE A BOYFRIEND RIGHT IN FRONT OF ME IS ANNOYING AS HELL!" Hiiragi shouted back, poking Uenoyama.

 

"THEN YOU SHOULD TRY AND MEET ME HALFWAY!" Uenoyama boiled with rage.

 

"YOU SHOULD TRY AND IMAGINE HOW I FEEL!!!" Hiiragi growled.

 

"Uenoyama-kun it's almost time~" Mafuyu peeked through the door. "Don't fight you two."

 

"We're not." Uenoyama replied smoothly.

 

Mafuyu nodded, "We gotta go to Given's studio next."

 

"Alright then I'll see you the day after." Uenoyama waved trying to keep his cool, "Good job."

 

"Good job." Shizu replied. 

 

"Good job." Hiiragi muttered.

 

As soon as the boyfriend duo left Shizu glanced at Hiiragi. 

 

Hiiragi yaked his hair, "AAAGH! I INSTINCTIVELY CLASH WITH HIM!!!"

 

"Why do you act like you're the most important person in the world??" Shizu asked.

 

  •  

 

Hiiragi laid next to Shizu. "Can you believe it? That idiot sounded so fucking surprised??? Like- did he never consider doing a debut?"

 

Shizusumi shrugged, "Who knows." 

 

"Ggrrr-" Hiiragi crossed his arms, "That idiot."

 

"Aren't we supposed to meet him now?" Shizu asked.

 

"Huh?" Hiiragi looked at his friend. "Yeah, I guess?"

 

"Then let's get going." Shizu got up and stretched.

 

Mmm right into my face Shizu. Hiiragi blushed. He gave his feelings for Shizusumi a lot of thought lately. He hates to admit it but he isn't the greatest at performing during band practices...the fact that half of the time he's thinking about Shizu might be a reason for it. (Other half of the time he's busy trying to find a way to piss off Uenoyama.)

 

"Sure." Hiiragi got up and followed Shizu nearby.

 

"Oh hey, Shizu, can you please return my notebook by the way! I have some song stuff in there."

 

"Huh?" Shizu stared at his friend, "You write song stuff in your modern japanese notebooks?"

 

"Uh- maybe." Hiiragi rubbed the back of his neck.

 

Shizu sighed and looked through the notebooks. He stared at them for a while and picked a blue one and handed it to Hiiragi.

 

"Uh...that's yours Shizu." Bassist points out, "The purple one is mine."

 

"Oh shit I haven't looked." Shizu took the other notebook and gave it to his friend.

 

"Thanks." Hiiragi takes it and puts it in the special section of bass case where he had all of his books.

 

"Yeah, thank you for letting me copy your notes."

 

"Anyways, let's go meet Uenoyama." Hiiragi ran out with Shizu going after him.

 

Damn he's acting weird lately. Hiiragi noticed. Is he sick?  

 

They sat down waiting for their support guitarist to arrive. 

 

Hiiragi leaned his head on Shizusumi's back. Once again Shizu was unable to leave his mind. Not that Hiiragi minded, it would just get distracting sometimes. 

 

His…feelings(?) for Shizusumi were way different than ones he had for Yuki. His love for Yuki hurt and left him feeling numb but his love for Shizu...well it made him happy. He felt safe in Shizusumi's presence. Only if he got his love returned...that would be sweet. 

 

The thought made him blush. Ugh I'm so desperately in love with Shizusumi.  

 

"Hey, it's hot." Shizu noted.

 

Ugh it's because Mafuyu told me to stick to Shizu...he's such a blockhead but I really love him.

 

"Uenoyama said he's at the station."

 

I love him. Hiiragi blushed so much that he thought his face was going to start melting. I love him. He remembered every time Shizu stayed at his side when no one else would. I love him. He thought of Shizu's good looking face and attractive physique.

 

"Are you even listening to me? And what's with that look?" Shizu asked but all Hiiragi could do at the moment was stare lovesick at his crush and think about how much he loves him.

 

Even though he used to be smaller than me. He remembered the days whe Shizu was a small one in between them. 

 

AAAAAH????!!!! WHAT DO I DO??!!! I LOVE HIM!!!!

 

Hiiragi.exe has stopped working.

 

"Hah? What?" was all that came out of his mouth.

 

Shizu pointed next to them and Hiiragi locked eyes with his natural rival who looked at the two boys blankly.

 

"Eh? What?" Hiiragi blinks. "So blank." he mutters

 

"Mafuyu...he-"

 

  •  

 

"AHAHAHHAHAHAHAHA!" Hiiragi laughed and Shizu tried to fight some of it back but he also ended up letting out a few giggles.

 

"MAFUYU IS AMAZING!" Hiiragi wheezed. 

 

"It's not amazing." Uenoyama said frustrated.

 

"THIS IS THE BEST THING I'VE HEARD ALL DAY!" 

 

"Shut up!" Uenoyama slammed his hand on the table, "Stop enjoying this!"

 

"BU-BUT-" Hiiragi tried to catch some air, ALTHOUGH YOU MUSTERED UP THE COURAGE AND ASKED HIM ABOUT DEBUTING AS PROS- HE'LL THINK ABOUT IT LATER????!!! LOLOLOLOL!"

 

"Thank you very much for your help." Uenoyama got up to leave.

 

"Wait wait-" Shizusumi grabbed his shirt.

 

"ANYWAY!" Uenoyama slammed his fist on the table, "WHY THE HELL DID HE PULL BACK IMMEDIATELY AFTER I TOLD HIM LET'S DO SOMETHING!?"

 

"Maybe, he thought it was annoying to join in?" Hiiragi said calmly.

 

"I'll kill you." Uenoyama pulled his hair.

 

"Well~" Hiiragi shrugged, "He's always been the type to take a long time to think y'see?"

 

"He won't give in once he's made up his mind." Shizusumi added on. "Make no mistake- he'll stay silent until he decides on a reply."

 

"He'll talk once he's done thinking." Hiiragi explained. "If you rush him, he'll just end the topic." 

 

"I'm leaving." Uenoyama got up again so both boys had to hold him back now.

 

"Alright! We get it, we're sorry!" Shizu apologized.

 

"By the way," Uenoyama blinked confused, "why aren't we at the studio today?" 

 

"Well today," Hiiragu scrolled through his phone. "We've got something to discuss with you."

 

"Discuss?" Uenoyama sat up, "Hey, I've sent you a track just now. What is it? Is this about wanting to perform a new song or something?"

 

"No." Shizu took a bite of his burger, "More like an old one."

 

Uenoyama stared at the two boys confused, "If it's an old song I think you've already sent me everything?"

 

"No...there's one that we didn't." Hiiragi explained. "It's from when Yuki was our vocalist."

 

"Yuki…" Uenoyama replied, "that's- Mafuyu's late childhood friend…"

 

"Have you heard about it?" Hiiragi asked.

 

Uenoyama looked at Hiiragi, "...No I don't really know much about it…"

 

Hiiragi sighed and explained, "In the beginning our band had three members- Yuki, me and Shizu. The three of us  composed music too- we even completed a few of those. This one's from that time."

 

"Huh? Then what about the ones until now?"

 

"The songs you've performed were all written by me. The songs Yuki wrote...the songs from when Yuki used to sing, we never performed after he died."

 

Uenoyama stared at the bassist blankly. 

 

"With you-" Hiiragi continued but the guitarist cut him off.

 

"No, wait- why didn't you, until now?" He asked genuinely.

 

Hiiragi sighed, "...I felt like I couldn't sing Yuki's songs after him… I'm not being sentimental, I'm simply not out for it."

 

"...? I don't get it. Was he really good? This guy?" Uenoyama looked away sighing, "Sorry because I don't believe this Yuki could've been any better than you…"

 

Hiiragi looked at the ground, "...You don't understand at all. Yuki was a fascinating person." He let out a sharp laugh, "I'm more like junk food in comparison...but...Yuki was extraordinary."

 

They sat there in silence for some time before Hiiragi continued, "Anyway, try listening to that demo for now."

 

  •  

 

Shizusumi sat on the bathroom floor for the past ten minutes shaking. 

 

"Yuki was extraordinary."

 

"Stop. Stop. Stop." Shizu begged as tears streamed down his face. "Please stop it." Stars fell on the floor making a sweet yet heartbreaking melody.

 

His color sight has worsened. He could barely see cold colors by now. Yellow remained the only color he was able to see clearly.

 

"Shizu, you done?" Hiiragi knocked on the doors worriedly. 

 

Shizu let out a trembling sigh and wiped his eyes with a sleeve of his jacket. "Yeah…"

 

Tears stopped a few seconds after and after two minutes he was greeted with waiting Hiiragi.

 

"Damn, Shizu what took you so long? Uenoyama already left." Hiiragi wondered.

 

"Nothing...don't worry." 

 

"What? How can I not worry?" Hiiragi fought.

 

"Let's go." Shizu changed the topic.

 

"Gah- Shizusumi Yagi! Will you stop avoiding my questions already?" 

 

"I told you it's none of your concern." Shizu clicked his tongue as they walked out of the building.

 

"You stayed by my side when I was LITERALLY dying and you can't even tell me what's going on?" 

 

"I just feel a little tired…" Shizu sighed, "School's been stressing me out." He picked the most believable excuse.

 

Shizu would appreciate it if Hiiragi could stop reminding him of the time he had hanahaki...it just reminded him of the time he was so hopelessly in love with Yuki...as if he still isn't. 

 

"Oh...do you wanna come over?" Hiiragi asked. 

 

"No need for that. I just need some rest."

 

Hiiragi nodded, "Gotcha." 

 

They walked in silence for a little while until Hiiragi spoke,"Uenoyama will do it won't he?"

 

Shizu felt his phone vibrate in the pocket of his jacket. He took it to see a message from Mafuyu

 

'Shizu-chan.' 

'Can I meet you now?'

 

"Hey, Shizu, are you listening?"

 

"I'm sorry I've got something to do." Shizu excused himself.

 

"Eh?" Hiiragi stared at him in confusion.

 

"I'm going that way." He pointed in the other direction.

 

"Ha!?"

 

Shizu ruffled Hiiragi's dyed hair. He was glad he could still see the color of it as good as before.

 

"See you tomorrow." He smiled softly.

 

"Uuu- eeeh??? "Something to do"??? With whom??" Hiiragi trembled, blushing like crazy.

 

"I'm off!" Shizu waved at his friend. "I gotta hurry!"

 

"At this hour, with whom???"

 

But he didn't give Hiiragi a reply and instead hurried to go meet Mafuyu.

 

He walked for some time and saw Mafuyu sitting all by himself, staring into the unknown.

 

"Mafuyu!" He called the smaller boy who turned in the surprise.

 

"Huh? Oh...Shizu-chan." He greeted him.

 

"Is this about your debut?" Shizu asked, sitting down.

 

"You heard?" The vocalist asked.

 

He nodded, "From Uenoyama, yeah. I heard you were worried about it…?"

 

Mafuyu sighed, "Rather than being worried I'm...I really don't know…I  hadn't even considered it." Mafuyu turned to the drummer, "When did you think about all that Shizu-chan?"

 

"After Hiiragi told me about it." Shizu shrugged, "He declared that he will go pro."

 

Shizu handed Mafuyu some water. "Ah...gotcha..." vocalist answered.

 

"Actually…what on Earth are you worried about, hmmm?"

 

Mafuyu remained silent.

 

"If Hiiragi says we're gonna do something. Anything's okay with me, though." Shizu admitted.

 

"...Because you love him?" Mafuyu asked.

 

Shizu wouldn't even know he was crying if he didn't hear a familiar sound of a star twar breaking against the ground and making noise. There was no point in trying to hide it now, Mafuyu already saw it but despite that he didn't say anything.

 

Shizu sighed and a few more tears hit the ground before he stopped crying. Mafuyu didn't comment on it.

He only moved a little closer to his friend.

 

Shizu wiped his eyes, "You're scared aren't you?" He tried to make eye contact with Mafuyu and at this point he could barely see any color in his eyes.

 

"I am…" Mafuyu admitted.

 

"Not like you or Yuki…" Shizu looked away, "Because any time I noticed it looked to me like you belonged to one another and as such, I don't think you'd understand but…" he let out a trembling sigh, "I don't have a choice. To obtain what I desire, I can't be bothered about appearances."

 

Mafuyu looked at Shizu in horror but Shizu just continued, "I can even...throw away my whole life." He looked at the starry sky. "You have it good, huh?"

 

"Ngh…" Mafuyu looked at the drummer wide-eyed, "If you love Hiiragi so much why don't you do something about it???"

 

"You see…" Shizu rubbed his neck awkwardly, "He might've been a little in love with Yuki…"

 

"Eh?" Mafuyu's skin paled and after seeing his reaction Shizu regreted sasing anything.

 

"Admittedly, I don't know what type of love it was but…" he tried to correct his mistake.

 

"Eh?"

 

"He idolized him...it was the same when he started playing music. I keep thinking why Hiiragi continues with the band even now. It has always been like that…"

 

Mafuyu blinked in surprise.

 

"I don't know, maybe you never realized because you were so close but the four of us- always had Yuku at the center and revolved around him."

 

"Is that how it was?" Mafuyu started.

 

"Yes, it was." Shizu groaned, "Seriously… everyone loves Yuki. It's irritating."

 

Mafuyu stared at the drummer silently but he didn't seem to be done with his little talk because he kept on going, ".....That's why...I'm okay with it even if it'll be an endless struggle." 

 

Mafuyu sighed, "Why do you think he loved Yuki? I mean...whenever I saw Hiiragi he was always around you."

 

"It's because he was also ready to give up his life for him-" Shizu spit out without thinking it through.

 

"What-?"

 

"Last winter...Hiiragi had hanahaki and I'm suspecting it was for Yuki since it ended a few days after his death." Shizu explained.

 

Mafuyu gasped. He put a hand over his mouth, "Hiiragi had hanahaki?"

 

"Don't tell him I told you though…" Shizu bit his lip. 

 

"I...I don't know what to say." 

 

"He was ready to die just so you two can get a happy ending." It came off as a whisper but it was just loud enough for Mafuyu to hear it.

 

Mafuyu buried his face in his hands, "That's why...that's why he looked so weird that day. That's why his yellow scarf was covered in blood…"

 

"Yeah." Shizu nodded. 

 

"And you…" Mafuyu turned to face the drummer. "You have star tear disease for Hiiragi…"

 

Shizu laughed, "I do…how do you know about it?"

 

"My mom has been telling me about it…" Mafuyu mumbled.

 

"Ah...well I do have it and I will do nothing about it." Drummer crossed his arms.

 

"Hmph?" Mafuyu widened his eyes, "You can't just not do anything about it! You'll go blind Shizu-chan- wait...do you...do you still see colors?" 

 

Shizu looked away, "Only dark red, yellow and a little bit of green."

 

Mafuyu gasped, "But you know there is not coming back?!" 

 

"I know." Shizu laughed, "I will never see blue, pink, purple, brown and other colors again…but I'll live and that's what matters."

 

That was a lie. Unlike many people, Shizusumu didn't fear death. He didn't mind it. He knew it would come eventually so why bother? It's only a matter of time. 

 

"And what when you go blind…?" Mafuyu asks shakily.

 

Shizusumi shrugged, "I'll think of something."

 

"Hiiragi will get upset...because…" Mafuyu closed his eyes and took a deep breath, "You wouldn't be able to play drums anymore."

 

"I don't see how that affects you though…" Shizu replies coldly.

 

"Of course it does…" Mafuyu whispered.

"You're my best friends…"

 

Shizu stared at his childhood friend for a while before breaking the awkward silence. "Hiiragi used to have breakdowns everyday."

 

Mafuyu looked up, "Huh?"

 

"For real...he thought you hated him so he would always follow me around, even at my house. He would curl up at my side and bury his face in my back making my entire shirt wet with his tears...you mean a lot to him so...ugh that was so off topic. I'm sorry."

 

"No...don't be." Mafuyu mumbled, "I'm glad you told me...everything."

 

"Yeah well it's late...my point is if you don't have resolve or tenacity to keep going with the band- or perhaps should I say with Uenoyama, I'm telling you this for your own good, so...stop it."

 

They waved each other goodbye and Shizusumi headed home with a strange feeling inside him. He'd love to say it was good and strange but it was not. He felt horrible and like an asshole. First of all he had no right to tell Mafuyu about Hiiragi's hanahaki nor his not even confirmed crush on Yuki, then he definitely shouldn't be so rough at the end...at least that's what he told himself.

 

"Huh…" he chuckled, "I really am an idiot aren't I?"  

 

He still can't believe he started crying in front of Mafuyu...after hiding his disease caused by unrequited love, the last thing he expected was to break down in front of his childhood friend. One good thing about the situation was that he felt like some of the weight had been lifted from his shoulders.

 

...but at what cost?

 

  •  

 

"Hey, Shizu-chan!" Yuki sat down next to his friend. 

 

"Hey…" Shizu looked at the other boy.

 

"Do you wanna play with me?" 

 

"What about Mafuyu and Hiiragi?" Shizu raised a brow. It was kind of sad he knew he wasn't anyone's first choice at such a young age.

 

"They are playing with cars and trains together." Yuki explained, "Also we don't play together enough but I still consider you my best friend."

 

"Really?" Shizu asked.

 

"Yeah, I do." Yuki smiled wide and bright.

 

"You are my best friend as well." Shizu annouced. "And so are Mafuyu and Hiiragi."

 

Yuki clapped his hands, "You three are amazing."

 

"You are amazing too Yuki." Shizu commented. "What did you wanna play?"

 

"Puzzles!" Yuki shouted, overly excited.

 

Shizu gasped, "Really!? But no one ever wants to play puzzles with me?" 

 

"I do!" Yuki took a box of puzzles with a dinosaur picture and gave it to Shizusumi. "I never played before so- teach me how to do it!"

 

Shizu smiled and opened a box, "Alright!" 

 

After carefully explaining the rules they mixed it all together for the game to be harder. 

 

"How are we gonna find the right pieces like this?" Yuki asked.

 

Shizu took the box and turned it around. "See, there's a picture of how the finished puzzle is supposed to look. We can use it as a reference."

 

"Woah so cool! It's going to help us out a lot." Yuki grinned.

 

"Mhm." Shizu smiled and they started to search through the puzzle in an attempt to find the right parts.

 

It took them around ten minutes to complete a 30+ part puzzle.

 

"Woah!" Yuki's eyes sparkled while staring at the finished product. "This is so cool! I love dinosaurs!"

 

"I know you do." Shizu added on, "That's why I choose this one."

 

"Can we do it again!? Can we? can we?" 

 

Shizu laughed happily because now he had someone to play puzzle with. 

 

"Yeah! Let's do the fish one now!"

 

  •  

 

Shizusumi woke up panting and gasping for air.

 

He sat up and tried to think clearly but his mind was rushing and his heart felt as if it was going to jump out of his chest. 

 

"It was just a dream...just...a dream." Shizusumi mumbled to himself but that didn't stop tears from falling down.

 

He buried his face in the pillow and sobbed. He sobbed like he never did before. He wasn't sure how he'll explain his pillow being shiny and glittery but it didn't matter now. 

 

Why did he have to dream of Yuki now? 

 

"F-fuck." Shizu whispered, "Why did life have to be so complicated...why did Hiiragi have to fall in love with you...why...why couldn't it be me? Why couldn't you- stay at my side...and tell me what to do...why did you leave me Yuki…"

 

  •  

 

"Shizuuu bud!" The enthusiastic blonde laughed and wrapped an arm around his shoulder. 

 

"Hm?" Shizu stared at him blankly, "What's up?"

 

Yuki let out a laugh."Let's go hang out today. Just the two of us." 

 

"Why just us?" Shizusumi questioned.

 

"Because Hiiragi has extra classes and Mafuyu's in shopping with his mom." Yuki sighed. "Also...I bought some new puzzles."

 

"Alright. You have me." Shizu smiled and the two boys walked to the Yuki's house joking and talking.

 

Yuki was such an amazing person to hang out with, Shizusumi felt lucky. He felt relieved in Yuki's presence whenever they were alone. He was happy being by his side and just talking to him. For fuck's sake they could be talking about the most boring topic ever and Shizu would still be happy. But sadly he knew that as soon as Mafuyu and Hiiragi came Yuki would focus all of his attention on Mafuyu and Hiiragi would focus on Yuki while Shizusumi stood at the side feeling left out.

 

That's why Shizusumi was glad he and Yuki had in common that the other two did not. It might sound a little mean but it made Shizusumi feel at least a little bit better. It didn't make him completely left behind. 

 

From that day in kindergarten and till now, last year of middle school, they were brought together and united by collecting and solving puzzles.

 

"Thanks on inviting me Yuki." Shizu said sitting down on the floor.

 

"Don't thank me," Yuki grinned and placed a hundred piece puzzle in front of them.

 

"Woah hundred pieces?! This won't be done until like- tomorrow." Shizu protested.

 

"Yeah, but...I like the image so...besides it's Friday so no school tomorrow."

 

It made Shizu curious. What was the picture Yuki was talking about? I guess they'd need to solve it quickly to find out.

 

And they did.

 

They stayed until 2 am and after finally putting all pieces together they collapsed on the floor next to each other like two babies…just like in the old times when life was easier and thes had absolutely nothing to worry about.

 

Before Shizu fell asleep he checked the finished picture...it was obviously a specifically designed puzzle Yuki paid to get made. Shizu smiled gently because it was a picture of Yuki and him smiling at the camera. 

 

Shizusumi wasn't the type for cameras but this was almost the only nice picture he had with Yuki...so he was glad his friend put it to good use. 

 

"Thanks." Shizu whispered before falling asleep not waiting for his friend to give him a reply.

 

He knew what he was gonna say, "You're welcome." Or "No problem."

But neither of those replies left Yuki's mouth.

 

Too bad Shizusumi was already sound asleep, unable to hear Yuki's silent, "I love you Shizu, no homo...you're a great friend so thank YOU for never leaving my side when I needed you." 

 

  •  

 

"I miss you." 

 

  •  

 

That night Shizusumi turned his entire room upside down in an attempt to find that exact puzzle piece. He put it somewhere safe where no soul could find it. After about thirty minutes he finally found it and a warm feeling washed over his body.

 

It still smells like you.

 

He looked at the picture inside the box and almost started crying.

 

He sighed and threw the puzzle pieces on the floor, ruining the picture he and Yuki created that day until all pieces were mixed up.

 

Then he carefully took each piece and started placing them back together. He was aware it would cost him his sleeping schedule but he didn't mind. He has one thing Yuki left him… it would be a shame to never put it to use again, right?

 

  •  

 

Hiiragi woke up feeling uneasy. He felt as if something was wrong. He felt like that ever since Shizu left yesterday.

 

"That dummy...is he okay?" He sighed, running his hand through his messy hair.

 

Hiiragi sighed and checked his phone in case of any new messages and he was right, he did indeed have a new message from Shizusumi.

 

'I'm going to be late today.'

 

"Damn, Shizu." Hiiragi squeezed his phone, "Why are you always late lately???" 

 

Whatever. He is just going to get ready and walk alone. And he did it.

 

Although he kinda hoped Shizu would leave his mind by then but nope he was still thinking about Shizusumi and Shizusumi only. 

 

I want to confess to him. Hiiragi thought. I wanna let him know I love him...it's starting to hurt again.

 

Hiiragi sighed and sat down at his desk zoning out. He couldn't think straight anymore. Where is he… ?

 

Thirty minutes later Shizusumi came in apologizing and pulling unnecessary excuses about how he had a doctor's appointment. Teacher believed him but Hiiragi didn't.

 

They didn't talk at all until one of their classmates walked up to them during their second break. "Hey, Hiiragi! Shizusumi!" Smaller guy approached them, "Some dude from another school is here to talk with you. He said it's important."

 

"Huh?" Hiiragi looked up, "Who?"

 

"Don't know but he's waiting outside. Just letting you know."

 

"Ah thanks then." Hiiragi got up and glanced at Shizusumi, "Aren't you coming?"

 

"I'll stay here." He said silently and Hiiragi rolled his eyes walking out of the classroom to be greeted with tired looking Uenoyama.

 

"I've composed that demo so listen." He handed Hiiragi his phone with earphones already plugged in.

 

"Didn't you finnish it a little too fast?" Hiiragi asked, genuinely worried.

 

"Just hurry up and listen." Uenoyama continued.

 

"Hey, this isn't your school y'know!?" Hiiragi snapped but Uenoyama was stubborn. "Okay! Alright! I get it! I get it!" 

 

Hiiragi sighed putting in the earphones, "Jeez, couldn't you just wait 'till we get to studi...o…?"

 

"Now quickly say something!" Uenoyama demanded but Hiiragi was too busy getting swallowed by the music.

 

"How…" Hiiragi mumbled, "-This song, it really…doesn't sound… like yours… at all."

 

"I composed it that way." Uenoyama replied.

 

Damn… this guy. Hiiragi put a hand over his mouth. This guy is insane.

 

He can see Uenoyama tried and gave it his all. As much as it didn't go with Hiiragi's aesthetic he had to admit Uecchi did an amazing job. It must have hurt… and Hiiragi was aware. He felt slightly bad but at least it was done. The song that meant Yuki so much… the song Hiiragi grew attached to. It was finished all thanks to Uenoyama.

 

"Thanks."

 

  •  

 

"So, Uenoyama finished the demo?" Shizu asked.

 

"Mhm." Hiiragi nodded.

 

"Well that was rather fast." 

 

"Ppfft- tell me about it." Hiiragi leaned back in his chair.

 

"Sorry for being late." Shizu apologized, rubbing the back of his neck. 

 

Bassist sighed and made eye contact with the drummer, "It's alright but… I'm worried about you...is everything alright?" 

 

"Yeah. It is." Shizu confirmed but Hiiragi still didn't believe all of this nonsense.

 

"I don't believe you." Hiiragi mumbled under his breath.

 

"You don't have to believe me…" Shizu shrugged and the two of them haven't spoken to each other for the rest of the day.

 

  •  

 

It hurt so much. It came to the point where Shizusumi couldn't go a day without crying. He would break down at the most random times, for fuck's sake once he almost got caught in the school's bathroom.

 

He struggled to keep his eyes open. They feel heavy...it hurts.

 

His heart ached and he felt horrible. Fights that occured in his foster family were getting worse and worse with each passing day. He couldn't listen to them anymore. 

 

He could see only a few shades of colors and yellow.

He started slacking in school and at the band practice. 

 

But of course Hiiragi noticed. Why now...why couldn't you notice it earlier? Don't you get it...it's too late for me. Why bother with me now...when you are still in love with HIM.  

 

Shizusumi wanted to scream. He wanted to escape from his body and move somewhere far where no one knows him.

 

A part of him wanted to take Hiiragi with him because he wasn't sure if he could imagine a life without Hiiragi in it but at the same time he didn't want to hear about him. Maybe if they never met life would be easier and Shizu wouldn't have to struggle with love so much. Of course...it's just maybe…

 

Maybe he would die of loneliness the same day. 

 

Who knows… because Shizusumi definitely doesn't.

 

He also doesn't know what has his life become but his guesses could go from 'a fucking nightmare' to 'mess' to 'hell'.

 

The drummer curled up on his bed as tears ran down his cheeks. He wished he could lose his ability to hear because the sound stars were making was so pleasing yet so painful. It was so beautiful yet so cursed.

 

It was the kind of sound people fall asleep over and the kind of sound that made you feel butterflies in your stomach...but for Shizusumi it was the sound of unbearable pain and unrequited love.

 

  •  

 

Next few days were even worse. Hiiragi and Shizusumi haven't talked at all except during band practices. 

 

You say you'll be here for me but where are you when I need you the most? 

 

"Hey umm...can I ask something?" Uenoyama asked one day.

 

"Hm?" Hiiragi wiped his forehead with the sleeve of his shirt. "What is it?"

 

"Did you two fight?"

 

"Hm?" Shizu blinked.

 

"Ah?" Hiiragi backed away. The two of them made eye contact and shook their heads.

 

"What makes you think so?" Shizusumi asked.

 

"Because you were really out of sync lately. Also the atmosphere in the studio feels heavy. Are you sure everything is okay?"

 

"Yeah, yeah." Hiiragi rolled his eyes, "It's alright. Nothing you should think too hard about."

 

"Hm…" Uenyoama glared at him, "Alright."

 

They played and/or discussed some other band related things for the next two hours but soon all three of them started to get hungry so now they were making their way to find someplace to eat

 

"Agh damn I'm starving." Uenoyama rubbed his stomach.

 

"Let's go eat something." Hiiragi whined.

 

"I concur." Shizu added on.

 

"Oh-" Hiiragi locked eyes with a familiar figure, "Mafuyu! Heyy!!" 

 

He ran towards the boy and patted him on the shoulder, "'Sup? On your way back from work?" He asked grinning like an idiot.

 

"So today you were also at the studio?" Mafuyu asked.

 

"Yeah cause we're preparing for our next live concert!" Hiiragi replied enthusiastically.

 

"We're gonna grab a bite to eat. You should come." Uenoyama suggested.

 

"Come on!" Hiiragi grinned.

 

"I won't go…" Mafuyu replied.

 

"Eh?? C'mon let's go?!!" Hiiragi asked confused.

 

"I won't go." Mafuyu decided and turned around. "Some other time." 

 

"Yeah, careful on your way back." Shizu added.

 

  •  

 

"Huh?! Mafuyu was acting quite funny wasn't he?" Uenoyama panicked.

 

"Earlier?" Hiiragi asked.

 

"You just realized?" Shizu slurped on his noodles.

 

"He must be upset at having his band member taken away by another band." Hiiragi shrugged.

 

"Does he have feelings like that?" Uenoyama blinked.

 

"WHAT THE HECK DO YOU THINK MAFUYU IS?!" Hiiragi shouted, "Besides, he must be thinking that I've once again stolen his man." 

 

Uenoyama backed away, "Like that'd happen." 

 

"THAT'S NOT WHAT I'M TALKING ABOUT!" Hiiragi got up.

 

Shizusumi sighed in annoyance.

 

"LISTEN THE FUCK UP!" Hiiragi groaned, "Because there's that thing about Yuki! I'll be in a fix if he hates me because of music again!" 

 

It hurt Hiiragi to say this. He clearly remembered how painful it was when Mafuyu cut ties with him without even giving the bassist one chance to apologize.

 

"What's this about!?" Uenoyama snorted.

 

"Didn't you hear about it?!" Hiiragi groaned.

 

"SO WHAT IF I HAVEN'T?!" Uecchi snapped.

 

"Like I said, Yuki he...that time, he…" Hiiragi looked down, "They'd have a huge fight right before...well I don't know all the details but...I got the feeling music was the cause." Hiiragi admitted.

 

He told Uenoyama he didn't know the details but he did. He heard them fight clearly. He saw them acting weird around each other at the caffe. He saw Mafuyu being angrier than usual. He heard Mafuyu clearly when he asked his boyfriend if he'd die for him...he heard him beg to end music already. He was there. Maybe he was in the dying state at the time...but he was there. And he knew…

 

"Back then Yuki was obsessed with music." Hiiragi explained, "Yet Mafuyu, never said "I want to do it too." Who knows, those days Mafuyu might've thought he was left all alone because of music."

 

Hiiragi ran his hand through his hair trying to keep his cool, "That's why I thought he despised music, for one thing. So I'd assumed he'd never "come to this side" but before I knew it he started playing in a band."

 

"C-crap." Uenoyama started shaking. He buried his face in his hands which kinda scared Hiiragi.

 

"What's wrong??" Hiiragi asked nervously. 

Fuck. Did I say too much?

 

"Lately I'd been so engrossed in this song things may have become exactly like that." He said, trembling. "Th- this is… not… good."

 

Then it hit Hiiragi like a truck. Shit...shit…shit.

 

"Another serving of noodles please." Shizusumi asked the waitress.

 

"I was thinking Mafuyu would OBVIOUSLY come watch ur perform but now he might not show up…"

 

"You guys," Shizusumi sighed "Are really obtuse y'know."

 

  •  

 

"SHIIIIITTTT!" Hiiragi pulled his hair. No no no no no. Fuck. Please make it stop. This could not be happening…

"M- ma- Mafuyu will hate me!" Hiiragi was now falling apart completely. 

"I can't do anything right!"

 

"''That so." Shizusumi mumbled.

 

And just like that it was as if nothing had happened between them. As if they didn't spend the last few days not communicating at all.

 

"YES~ IT IS !!! BECAUSE OF SOMETHING I TOOK UP FOR HIS SAKE, HE'S ENDED UP ALONE AGAIN?!"

 

"Well yeah." Shizu replied.

 

"NO WAY!" Hiiragi groaned. "EVEN THOUGHT IT WAS NOT MEANT TO BE A SECRET." That's when he stopped to think about that sentence a little, "Even though...it wasn't…"

 

He glanced at Shizu waiting for a response but the drummer said nothing and just stared at the night sky wearing a blank expression.

 

"Shizu…?" Hiiragi sighed. He wanted to apologize for not talking to the drummer the last few days, he was worried and snapped a few times...and now he regrets that. "Are you mad about something?"

 

Shizusumi laughs coldly, "I kind of understand Mafuyu's feeling of isolation." Shizusumi explained.

 

Wait...what? Is he really THAT angry at me?

 

Hiiragi opened his mouth to say something, anything… but no words came out. 

 

Shizusumi glanced at him and at that moment Hiiragi felt as if he was shot with a cold and poisonous arrow right through the middle of his heart. The unusual smirk sent shivers down his spine.

 

"...huh?" He mouthed.

 

"Really…" Shizusumi turned around not giving Hiiragi a chance to ask anything.

"The one who is left out...is me right?"

 

Hiiragi's eyes widened in surprise, "WHA-" 

 

Is this really how Shizu feels?! Fuck did I really fuck up that badly- Hiiragi's mind raced. What in the world was going on? 

When did this happen? Could it be...that...Shizusumi hated him?

 

Oh god. Oh god. Oh god. 

 

"I mean-" Shizu's gaze found Hiiragi's and words that can't be unsaid were spoken. Words Hiiragi hoped he'd never hear, "You too...were in love with Yuki too weren't you?" 

 

Hiiragi froze up, "W-what?" He mumbled, "What are you-"

 

"Your hanahaki." Shizusumi interrupted him, "It was for Yuki wasn't it? That's why it disappeared as soon as Yuki died right?"

 

Hiiragi felt tears in his eyes start to form. "S-shizusumi I- What?"

 

Shizu gave Hiiragi a bittersweet smile, "There's no need to lie...I know it already. I knew from the beginning." 

 

Hiiragi let out a trembling laugh and buried his face in his hands trying not to cry. "And what if I was? What does that mean to you?"

 

Shizusumi was silent for some time, "Nothing…" but Hiiragi could tell he was lying because even when he lifted his head up to look at Shizu the drummer was staring in some other direction. There was also some weird crystalline sound...it sounded beautiful to Hiiragi yet for some unknown reason it hurt him. Too bad he didn't bother to check where the sound was coming from…

 

They sat in uncomfortable silence for the next few minutes. No words were spoken and air in between them felt heavy and hard to breathe. 

 

Why does it matter if I liked Yuki...when now I love you? Hiiragi wanted to ask but decided against it. He couldn't manage to confess to Shizusumi after a conversation as fucked up as theirs. Besides...he's probably getting rejected.

 

In the end it was Shizusumi who broke the silence, "Hey…" he sighed, "I'm sorry...I said too much did I?"

 

Hiiragi nodded, "Way too much."

 

"I'm sorry." The drummer apologized, "I shouldn't have been so straight forward with such a sensitive topic...it was… very inconsiderate of me."

 

"Don't beat yourself over it." Hiiragi whispered. He couldn't find any strength to speak yet he still managed to ask, ``What do you mean by… it was you who was left behind?"

 

"It's because...it felt as if every single thing revolved around Yuki, it- it was irritating." Shizu groaned.

 

"But you liked him…" Hiiragi noted, "because he was your friend too?"

 

"Of course but-" Shizu faced Hiiragi, "It hurt me so much seeing you ready to die for him...when he had no idea what impact he had on you."

 

"It's okay…" Hiiragi assured the other boy, "Because...there's someone else I'm in love now." Shut up. Shut up. Shut up. Not now.  

 

Shizusumi's eyes widened, "What?!" 

 

"Why are you so surprised?" Hiiragi asked, "Is it so weird?"

 

"N-no…" Shizusumi bit his lip, "I...I just didn't even realize. I thought you were still in love with him because...you insisted on Uenoyama finishing that song."

 

"Like I said… I just don't want that song to go to waste when Yuki worked so hard on it.

 

Shizusumi nodded, "Ah...I get it."

 

"See?" Hiiragi smiled.

 

"Hm?"

 

"There are some things about me that even you don't know." Hiiragi smirked.

 

He felt slightly better. Shizusumi didn't seem as angry so he took the opportunity to lean his head on his friend's shoulder...just like whenever Hiiragi would feel down. Shizusumi didn't move away nor did he push the bassist away… that must be a good sign, right?

 

"I guess." Shizu sighed and turned to Hiiragi, "Hey...Hiiragi-"

 

"Hm?" Hiiragi looked up at the drummer.

 

"...do you wanna come over?"

 

  •  

 

The walk home has been rather awkward. Neither boy knew what to say and the air surrounding them felt heavy Hiiragi found it hard to breathe. He doesn't know why he agreed to come over but he did. He longed for Shizusumi's presence more than anything. Even though things are awkward at the moment it doesn't mean they are gonna stay that way right? Well Hiiragi sure hoped he was right because he couldn't stand a thought of losing his only sense of comfort and his shoulder to lean on.

 

"Hiiragi, are you coming in?" the other boy waved his hand in front of the bassist's face. 

 

"Huh?" Hiiragi just realized he drafted off in a scary place named thoughts. He shook his head and followed Shizusumi inside the house. 

 

He looked around carefully as if he's the first time here. Nothing was different...except the atmosphere.

 

"They're not home." Shizu muttered and turned to the other boy while taking the upper part of his uniform off. "In case you were wondering."

 

"Oh. Okay." He means his family. Hiiragi sighed… Shizu never called his foster parents with labels such as mom and dad. It would always be 'they'.

 

"Hurry up a little would ya?" Shizu tapped his foot on the floor." 

 

"Oh- um~ yeah sure I'm coming!" Hiiragi sighed and buried his face in his hands as soon as Shizu turned his back.

 

The bassist followed his friend close behind cursing himself. You moron why can't you just focus gah-

 

He sat down on Shizu's bed as the other boy searched through multiple drawers and closets.

 

"I'll go take a shower now." He announced and walked off.

 

"Mhm...sure." Hiiragi nodded but as soon as his friend left he groaned and started pulling his hair. "Fuck… why can't you just love me?" 

 

  •  

 

Shizusumi let the freezing water run down his back. He hoped it would wake him from whatever this bad dream he was having was. Unfortunately he soon came to realize that this wasn't a dream and that the awkward tension between him and his crush was real.

 

"Damn…" he lifted his face up, the water now falling on his face. "I fucked up didn't I?"

 

Whatever the case was he pushed the feeling away, like he always would. Or at least he tried to. He felt as if he was going to cry again and really in a matter of ten seconds he was sobbing… however this time it felt slightly different. No stars started falling down his cheeks. There was no crystalline sound. Nothing… just regular tears streaming down his face…

 

He shook his head and turned off the water. Shizusumi quickly walked out of the shower and wrapped himself in a towel. He looked at his reflection in the mirror although soon after he realized that maybe he shouldn't have done that. Staring at the mirror he was greeted with a completely black and white version of himself.

 

He choked back a sob and let himself fall on his knees. Losing sight hurt. It hurt beyond words because he knew for a fact there was no coming back. And soon...soon he'll go completely blind… 

 

He recalled his conversation with Mafuyu… he hated to admit that his friend was right. If he goes blind he won't be able to play drums anymore and then- then what? It would not shatter just him but Hiiragi as well. He knows, for FUCK'S SAKE HE KNOWS, how badly Hiiragi wants to be a pro. It was no secret. Yuki had the same dream and looked how that turned out… SYH could easily turn into H. That was just one out of many things Shizusumi was scared of.

 

When his star tear disease first appeared Shizusumi promised that he was NOT going to let that fear get the best of him. 

 

The only thing he could do was get the fuck up and look ahead of himself and improvise on his way. Maybe if he believes that things will be okay- well maybe they will…

 

After some time he finally managed to stand up. It felt strangely good to let those emotions out… he thought after calming down.

 

Shizusumi took another glance at his reflection and shook his head, turning away. He'll stay strong. He has to...he has to be strong or else he'll go insane.

 

He quickly changed in one of his old shirts and some sweatpants he found in his closet. With his white-black-yellow sight it was rather hard to find clothes these days.

 

  •  

 

"Ah you're finally back." Hiiragi commented and got up. "I'll go next."

 

"You have your clothes right?" Shizusumi asked.

 

"Yup." Older boy nodded and walked away leaving the drummer all by himself once more.

 

Ever since they were kids it was a habit of theirs to have some spare clothes or pajamas at each other's houses. To be honest Shizusumi wouldn't be surprised if he still had some of Yuki's old clothes as well.

 

With a trembling sigh he threw himself on the bed and pulled the covers all over him warming him up. It was freezing and Shizu didn't want to catch a cold. Was Hiiragi also cold? He wondered. I hope he has something warm like a hoodie and not one of his stupid t-shirts.

 

If it wasn't for Hiiragi coming five minutes later he'd already be asleep. 

 

"You're already going to sleep?" 

 

Shizusumi turned and a wave of relief washed over him when he saw Hiiragi did indeed have a warm hoodie…wait-

 

"Is that my hoodie?" 

 

"Ah that?" Hiiragi rolled up the oversized sleeves, "Yeah. Hope you don't mind."

 

"Nah." Shizu shrugged and turned his back to the bassist. "You can have it."

 

"You're uh...tired?" Hiiragi asked awkwardly, slowly sitting down next to his friend.

 

"Yeah. Good night." Shizu sighed and pulled the covers over his head.

 

Hiiragi was silent for some time before laying down next to the drummer as well. He took one of the spare blankets and made a blanket burrito out of himself.

 

A silent "Night…" could be heard but Shizusumi didn't give any signs on whether he heard it or not.

 

  •  

 

"Stop whining you big cry baby." Shizusumi rolled his eyes. "It's just a scratch."

 

"B-but." Hiiragi choked on a sob, "It hurts."

 

"You're overreacting." (at the time) a smaller boy replied.

 

"Am not." Another sob.

 

"Calm down." Shizusumi groaned and put a bandage over his friend's scraped knee.

"Better?"

 

Hiiragi sniffed and tried to calm himself down. He was running too fast and accidently fell on the rock, scraping his knee in the process. It took him by surprise so his natural instinct told him to start crying. Shizusumi who saw the entire thing ran up to him with a bandage in his hand. 

 

"Yeah...thanks." Hiiragi mumbled.

 

"You're welcome. Does princess have any other wishes?"

 

"Can you…" the other boy played with his fingers. "Kiss it so it heals faster?"

 

"Huh? What kind of joke is that?" Shizu looked at his friend with a blank expression.

 

"Didn't you hear?!" Hiiragi gasped, "My mom told me that if you kiss an injury it will heal faster."

 

"Sounds dumb." Shizu clicked his tongue.

 

"But it's true." Older boy protested.

 

Shizusumi rolled his eyes and gave his friend a peck on the knee. "Better?"

 

Hiiragi was smiling from ear to ear as if he wasn't sobbing just a few minutes ago. "Way better! Thanks Shizu-chan."

 

  •  

 

Shizusumi woke up in the cold sweat. 

 

It was just a dream. Or rather a memory? Shizusumi remembered the day as if it was yesterday. First time he kissed anyone. Even if it was on the knee it was the first time he tried that unusual form of affection. First time he saw Hiiragi break down over an injury. First time he put a bandage on someone.

 

He saw it a lot on TV so he knew how to do it properly. Also his foster family had a woman who worked as a nurse in hospital so she taught him a thing or two at the time.

 

The desire to continue sleeping was strong so he squeezed his eyes shut but nothing happened. He turned on the other side and a strange feeling of loneliness washed over him. 

 

He opened his eyes and boy was there a sight to see.

 

Hiiragi was no longer next to him. 

 

Shizusumi jolted awake and rubbed his eyes. "Where the fuck did that twink go?" He decided to wait for five minutes because maybe he just went to the toilet and the drummer was overreacting. 

 

After a while he got up and looked at the time. It was 2:29 in the morning.

 

Shizusumi groaned and made his way downstairs to see if Hiiragi was in the kitchen or maybe the living room. 

 

To Shizusumi's surprise both places were empty. "Oi Hiiragi!" He called but no reply could be heard.

 

Wait...he did not. Shizusumi cursed and ran back upstairs walking to the big window in the middle of the hallway. It led to the rooftop where two boys hung out from time to time. As he opened the window a million shivers ran down his spine and Shizusumi felt as if he stepped into snow barefoot.

 

"Yeah. Not happening." He walked back to his room and opened his closet. He searched for a while until he found himself a warm jacket. 

 

Assuming that Hiiragi already took something warm he only picked up a familiar yellow scarf and left the room, slowly walking back to the window. 

 

This time cold didn't bother him as much so he easily climbed out. 

 

As soon as he got up there he saw a familiar figure sitting about two meters from the edge staring into the distance. Just as Shizusumi predicted he already took one of his jackets. Hiiragi might have been dense but he wasn't immune to cold.

 

"Hiiragi." Drummer called out which caused the other one to twitch and turn around in surprise.

 

"S-shizu!" He asked wide eyed. "What are you doing here?"

 

"I could ask YOU the same thing." Shizu walked up to his friend and took a seat next to him.

 

"I just needed to get some fresh air." Hiirsgi mumbled and looked away avoiding eye contact.

 

"Here," Shizusumi handed his friend a scarf, "I know you can't without scarfs." 

 

"Huh?" Hiiragi gasped, "You still have that ugly thing?"

 

"Excuse me?" Shizusumi asked, offended.

 

"I thought you threw it away that day it got bloody." Hiiragi shrugged and wrapped the piece of cloth around his neck.

 

"No. I washed it with my bare hands. Ugh do you remember-" Shizu groaned "You slept for twenty-four hours that day."

 

"I mean I WAS dying." Hiiragi let out a trembling laugh.

 

"And I kept my promise…" 

 

"What promise?" Hiiragi asked, slightly confused.

 

"That I'll keep you alive." Shizu tried to smile. 

 

"Yeah… that you did." Bassist rubbed his neck awkwardly.

 

They sat in uncomfortable silence for some time. Each passing minute Shizusumi hoped Hiiragi would say something. Anything.

 

But the air between them remained heavy. 

 

"Are you angry at me? Look...the past few days have been really weird. You don't cling to me anymore, you barely text me and you've been avoiding me." Shizusumi finally asked.

 

"What?" Hiiragi asked with a pained look on his face. A look he would wear when he was about to break down. A look he'd have when he thought the world was falling apart. 

 

Do you seriously not know...did you even realize we started drifting away from each other?

 

And every time...every goddamn time he would wear that look Shizusumi's heart broke a little bit because he wanted to pull the other, smaller yet older boy in his tight embrace and tell him it was okay. That he had him...but now. Now- Shizusumi knew he fucked up. Especially after his scandalous 'It's because you too were in love with Yuki?' question. 

 

He unintentionally hurt Hiiragi...he was aware. Shizusumi was sure killing a man would hurt less than seeing the love of his life suffer.

 

"You're...angry aren't you? Because of what I said isn't it?"

 

"We went over it." Hiiragi mumbled, "It's okay it doesn't matter anyways does it?"

 

Oh yeah...I forgot. Shizusumi chuckled You're in love with someone new right? Of course...we'll as long as you're happy my love. 

 

"What's so funny?" Hiiragi asked.

 

Shizusumi just continued on laughing at his own misery. "I am such an idiot...please." he looked up and his gaze found Hiiragi's "Forgive me."

 

"Shizusumi, you-" Hiiragi's eyes widened in terror, "You're crying stars."

 

Shizusumi choked back a sob as stars started hitting the ground one after the other. "I know…" he smiled through the tears.

 

"Shizusumi I-" Hiiragi gripped his scarf.

Shizusumi immediately recognized the action. Hiiragi had that little habit of his where he'd grab the closest thing and squeeze it as tight as possible when he got scared or anxious. In most cases it was Shizusumi's hand...but this time it was not. And THAT was something Shizu did not want to accept so he got closer, ignoring the state he was in, and took Hiiragi's hand in his own.

 

Smaller boy just stared back in horror, "Shizu…" 

 

"Shut up. I know."

 

"Why didn't you tell me?" Hiiragi squeezed Shizusumi's hands. "For how long- how long do you have this disease?"

 

"You know about star tears?" Shizu whispered.

 

"You idiot!" Hiiragi yelled, "I LITERALLY HAD HANAHAKI DID YOU SERIOUSLY THINK I WOULDN'T KNOW WHAT STAR TEAR DISEASE IS!?" 

 

Shizusumi choked back a sob, "I'm sorry. I never...wanted you to see me like this."

 

"Shizusumi look at me." Bassist demanded.

 

"Yeah?" Shizu looked up.

 

"How long?" Hiiragi repeated his question.

 

"It's hard to tell but I think since…the day before the festival."

 

Hiiragi broke down laughing, "You gotta be kidding me… so I'm assuming your vision's black and white. Woah- I am so dumb." He laughed, "Everything makes so much sense now."

 

"Actually I can see one color." Shizusumi muttered.

 

"I'm such an idiot." Hiiragi buried his face in Shizusumi's chest. "I feel awful now."

 

"Why?" 

 

"Why?" Hiiragi lifted his head to look Shizusumi in the eyes, "Because you are here...losing your sight day by day due to unrequited love and I had no idea but when I was the one going through something similar you-" he started shaking, "You were always there for me."

 

"Please…" Shizusumi begged him, "Don't put that blame on yourself."

 

"But-"

 

"STOP-" Shizusumi shouted, "I am alive. I am doing well. I can't quite see but I am alive. Isn't THAT what matters?"

 

"I-" Hiiragi wrapped his arms around Shizusumi's neck and buried his face deep into the drummer's neck, "I don't want to see you suffer, idiot."

 

Shizusumi slowly moved his arms around Hiiragi's waist.

 

Tell him you love him you fuckface. He cursed himself. Do it before it's too late. Fuck I wanna kiss him so bad. Rejection is the worst that can happen.

 

"Hiiragi…" Shizusumi whispered and the two of them made eye contact, their faces now only a few centimeters apart.

 

"Yes, Shizu?"

 

"I love you." He whispered.

 

As soon as the words escaped his mouth he felt as if he was going to pass out. Was it due stress, fear, embarrassment or ask god what else, he'll never know. 

 

Words were left hanging in the air and Shizusumi could clearly see Hiiragi's eyes filled with tears. They slowly started streaming down his cheeks one after the other. Damn...I wanna kiss him so much.

 

Hiiragi put a hand over his mouth holding back a sob. Shizusumi knew that he was probably blaming himself right now so he did only thing he could think of. 

 

He pushed some falling hair behind the bassist's ear and pulled his face closer. Slowly he moved forward and pressed his lips on the other boy's cheek. He could feel the salty taste of tears dance on his lips. 

 

"Are you okay?" He mumbled.

 

"I-" Hiiragi tried to catch his breath but found it quite difficult to do while crying. "I love you too."

 

Shizusumi could swear on his life his heart never skipped so many beats. He loves me.

 

He would have the entire party in his mind if it wasn't for the bassist who pulled the bigger boy closer causing him to fall on his back with Shizusumi on top of him.

 

At that moment Shizusumi broke down again, this time no stars slipped down his cheeks. Only happy tears.

 

He pressed himself against Hiiragi and kissed him on the cheek once more. "F-fuck." He laughed, "I wanted to do this for so long." 

 

"I'm sorry." Hiiragi mumbled. "It was me wasn't it? I took away your sight haven't I?" 

 

Shizusumi groaned and ruffled Hiiragi's hair.

 

"Ah- Shizu-chan!" 

 

"Apologize once more and I'll kick your ass." He smiled.

 

Despite Shizusumi's black-white-yellow vision he could still see Hiiragi's face flush.

 

"You're adorable when you blush." He teased the older boy.

 

"Shut up~" Hiiragi groaned, letting out a chuckle.

 

"Hiiragi." Shizusumi sat up letting go of the other boy's warm embrace, "Will you...will you be my boyfriend?"

 

He should have known what was about to come because after all they knew each other for years now. He should have predicted his little princess would start crying again.

 

"Yes." He sat up, wiping the tears with the yellow scarf.

 

"You know...yellow is the only color I can still see clearly." Shizusumi admitted.

 

"Hm? Isn't that kinda ironic...you don't like yellow."

 

"Oh, yeah I sure do." Shizu laughed, "It reminds me of your eyes because whenever I see them they are looking at me with that positive aura."

 

"You like my eyes?" Hiiragi squealed.

 

Shizusumi fought back a laugh, "I love everything about you."

 

"Woah...someone's strangely romantic on this beautiful night."

 

"I just confessed my undying love for you while all you did was cry like a baby, sweetie. We are not the same." 

 

"Oh shut uppp~" Hiiragi laughed and leaned his head on Shizusumi's shoulder.

 

They sat there on Shizusumi's rooftop, watching stars at 3 am, with their fingers intervene.

 

I love him. I love him. I love him.

 

"Hey…" Hiiragi asked after a while of silence.

 

"Yes princess?" Shizu looked at his boyfriend.

 

"Can I kiss you?" Hiiragi moved his face closer.

 

"Please do." Shizusumi mumbled and closed his eyes.

 

Not even a second later he felt warm lips crash against his. Hiiragi's kiss was way softer than he imagined and he LOVED it. He smiled against the kiss and pulled the bassist closer so that he was now sitting in Shizu's lap.

 

They kept kissing for a while still trying to get used to the feeling. It was strange, yes but Shizusumi wouldn't want it any other way because now...he was happy. He had everything he could ever wish for. He had a perfect boyfriend with soft lips.

 

And that was enough for Shizusumi.

 

  •  

 

Hiiragi's mind raced as his lips pressed against Shizusumi's. Frickity fuckity fuck it's happening. He squealed and pressed against Shizusumi's body.

 

He could feel the drummer's hands go through his hair. Best. Feeling. In. The. World.

 

However a part of him still felt guilty. He knew he shouldn't and set out to do so. Although he apologized and Shizu told him he'll kick his ass if he tries doing it again he felt as if he has to make it up to his boyfriend somehow. And he knew exactly how he was going to do it. 

 

He is going to make up for the lost color sight with being the best boyfriend ever. He is going to make Shizu breakfast in bed, give him cuddles and kisses as much as possible, he'll buy him food and write him songs.

 

Hiiragi's mind raced. There were so many things he and Shizu needed to do. So many date spots they need to visit and so many ideas they need to try out now that they are dating.

 

But for now...just sitting and kissing on Shizusumi's rooftop at three in the morning was good.

 

I gotta tell Mafuyu all about this asap.

 

"Hey, Hiiragi." Shizu mumbled.

 

"Yeah?" Bassist raised a brow.

 

"It's okay…" he squeezed his hand tight and gave him a warm smile. It was the kind of smile that made Hiiragi's heart set on fire. "We'll be okay."

 

Hiiragi couldn't argue with that logic because Shizusumi was more than right.

 

It's okay. And it will keep on being okay. They were going to be alright because now they have each other.

 

Knowing that was enough for Hiiragi.