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Lost and Found

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“…Sorry,” whispers Totsuka-san with his last… with his dying breath.

Misaki Yata is blinded by sudden tears and doesn’t even know he’s screaming from the rooftop. The constant denials resonate in his head but Totsuka-san looks at him with a blank stare. There’s no warmth in them. There’s nothing in them. So he screams louder. This… it… this couldn’t be happening.

Misaki doesn’t even see Kasanagi-san anymore. He doesn’t hear the inevitable phone-call nor does he see the fallen video camcorder, with the face of the murderer. All he can see is the paleness of his skin, the emptiness in his eyes, the leftover smile that dares to grace his bloodless lips, the blood staining his clothes and fingers – fingers that last touched his cheek – and he can’t... he can't breathe anymore.

The world starts to spin so he gasps for breath but his wails are getting louder. He can feel a panic attack coming on but the blood is rushing to his head.

This cannot be happening. They were the invincible Red Clan, the HOMRA. And this was… this was the irreplaceable Totsuka-san. Everybody liked Totsuka-san. Everybody loved Totsuka-san. Even their enemies. Who? Why? Him?

As soon as the others arrive, he slowly edges away from the cooling body – the body that he held when he felt the life disappear from it – and escapes into the streets. The thought hits him so hard that he practically staggers into an alleyway and throws up violently. His hands shake. His skin feels clammy. The lights around him begin to double and triple. He throws up again.

“Hey… Don’t sweat it… It’ll all… work out… Sorry…”

The words echo and echo. He scratches his ears beneath his beanie hat before he grabs it and flings it on the grimy floor. Before he knows it, he’s running down the streets.

“Hey… Don’t sweat it… It’ll all… work out… Sorry…”

Suddenly, there’s a body in his path and he collides straight on. Still disturbed from the night’s event, he whispers, “Sorry.” Then he seems to remember Totsuka-san again as he whispered it not too long ago. Turning to his side, he collapses to his knees and begins to dry-heave. There’s nothing left for him to expel. But his body tries and tries.

There are hands grabbing his shoulders roughly but he can’t work up the energy to look at his assaulter. He just continues to shiver and shake as his body involuntarily contracts. His eyes are glazing and his ears still ring with Totsuka-san’s last words but somehow, he hears the alarmed call from Fushimi.

“Misaki! Misaki! Stop it,” he yells. But Misaki can’t control his body anymore. He closes his eyes but Totsuka-san is imprinted beneath his eyelids. And he doesn’t have the strength to open them again. “Misaki,” Fushimi yells again and this time he forces Misaki’s eyelids open.

The shock of cold fingers on his heated skin momentarily brings Misaki out of his daze and he launches himself at the obviously agitated Fushimi. “…-shimi. Fushimi,” he clatters with trembling lips. “He… the… shot… him…” he manages to say as he grips the lapels of Fushimi’s blue uniform with tight fists.

Fushimi doesn’t bother to berate his once-best friend. He’s never seen him like this before. And from what he’s heard so far, something bad had to have happened in HOMRA tonight. His fingers link into Misaki’s matted hair and he pulls on the strands sharply until they face each other eye-to-eye. He wastes no time at all, “What happened Misaki?”

Misaki holds him tighter by his material and Fushimi feels constricted but the brunet obviously needs the comfort. “Totsuka-san… he… rooftop… shot… in my arms… sorry…” came the choked words.

Fushimi sees the drying blood on Misaki’s face and comprehends the broken words. Holy fuck, is the only thought in his head as he clutches Misaki to his chest in a tight embrace. “Someone murdered Totsuka-san?” His mind races with all the possibilities and the repercussions, but only for a second. Memories of the strangely weak yet strong man assault him and he tightens his grip in Misaki’s hair.

The moment they met on that busy street to the moment he waved goodbye in the bar with the trace of betrayal bitter on his tongue.

Misaki cries a little more. “He was in my arms and I tried to tell him everything would be fine, just like how he always said it would be.” His chest shook hard under the emotions. “But instead, he touched my face and told me not to sweat because everything would be okay.” Misaki’s knees gave out. “But how can things ever be okay again? They can’t because he’s gone. Gone! And I felt everything. I felt his last breath. I felt his last touch. I felt his last everything. Oh God.” Misaki started to dry-heave again.

Fushimi gave no care to his uniform as he fell the ground with the shattered Misaki. “Misaki,” he started slowly but no other words came to mind.

Misaki didn’t care but beat his fist on the ground. “Not him!” he screamed into the silent night. “Anyone but him!” Turning to Fushimi, he pleaded helplessly, “He didn’t do anything. He could barely skate properly. He was the biggest idiot ever.” He looked to the sky and cried out again, “Not him! Anyone but him!”

***

Fushimi leant against a nearby stonewall and gathered his broken friend into his arms. Wiping the blood off of his cheek, he let Misaki cry his heart out into his chest. It was the only thing he could think of. But it left him in his memories of Totsuka-san.

Regret tasted bitter. His last memory of the man was a passing meeting on the street. Was that how Totsuka-san would remember him by? The traitor who broke his bonds with them to join the enemy?

But relief and pity warred against that regret. At least, he selfishly thought, he didn’t have to be there for Totsuka-san’s death. Looking at the pathetic mess Misaki was reduced to, he sighed. Would this be him if Misaki were the one who was killed tonight?

Misaki whispered gently, “I loved him. He was my HOMRA brother. And now he’s gone. Just like my mother and my stupid father. Just like you did.”

Fushimi stilled. Misaki had serious abandonment issues. His mother died when he was much younger and his father discarded him for a new wife and started a new family. His betrayal hadn’t really helped. And now the closest mother figure to the boy had just been murdered. He said nothing in reply and Misaki didn’t seem to expect one.

Instead he looked up into the starless night. And one fleeting thought entered his head.

Just for one night, let’s forget everything else.

But as Misaki continued to soak his uniform and the blood of Totsuka-san stained his fingers, he wondered briefly how could they ever forget.

Fushimi knew that as the morning dawned they would undoubtedly become enemies again. Totsuka-san would still be dead. Misaki would continue to follow HOMRA, even more so now than before. But maybe the Red King would have lost points in his eyes for failing to protect Totsuka-san. But who knew? Who really cared at this point?

All that shit about friends and brothers and bonds was just that. It was shit. But Totsuka-san was different. He just knew. And he stayed quiet. He was an observer with his trust camcorder. He was the glue that the HOMRA needed to fit all those misfits with. And without him…

***

Just for one night, let’s forget everything else.

The clouds were dark. The night was cold. But Fushimi was warm. Warmer than Totsuka-san. And right now, that was all Misaki needed. Misaki closed his eyes.

He’d lost the warmth of Totsuka-san but maybe for just tonight, he had found the warmth in Fushimi.

It wouldn’t last. But as tonight had shown, nothing was a guarantee.

His last conscious thought of that dreaded night was that he should have tried harder to teach Totsuka-san to skateboard.