|My Destiny, My Destination
31st July, 1999. A day never to be forgotten.
No matter how many times we had rehearsed, I still felt terribly nervous
the night before. I kept having nightmares of forgetting the lyrics, falling
off the stage, or even more nonsense things. I always had such dreams before
concerts but I just couldn't get used to them. Especially that night.
The next day, the day of our greatest concert, Expo '99 Survival, I
arrived in the early morning, about 2 hours ahead of schedule. Feeling too
excited and anxious at home, I decided to go earlier.
I sat on the stage, gazing around. Soon it would be packed with people, two hundred thousand people. The thought of it was so great, even unrealistic. I almost pinched myself to check if I was dreaming, if I didn't feel that pat on my shoulder.
"Ohaiyo, you're so early."
It was him. He flashed me a smile, and settled down beside me.
"Yah... Too excited to sleep. What about you?"
We hadn't talked privately for a long time, so long that I couldn't remember. But that was nothing special for we still had to talk about work every day.
"I dreamt that my costume got pulled off when I did my guitar solo."
We were like old friends, laughing hard at each others' dreams. Under the soft morning breeze and the rising sun, I truly felt we were back to our old days, before everything happened, when we were still best friends. The time when we did the most silly things together, laughed at the most nonsense jokes. I really missed those days - truthful, innocent...
"Do you know what day today is?"
He stopped laughing all of a sudden and asked, gazing at the clear blue sky.
"31st of July?"
I giggled, couldn't understand why he had to ask.
"Tomorrow is the 1st of August."
He said softly, his eyes still set on the cloudless sky, as if he was trying to look back in time.
My memories rushed back. That cafe. I still remember how I knocked down the waitress in front of all the customers, and the slim young guy sitting with Takuro.
"It was 1st of August? I never noticed!"
I shrugged and giggled, never expected he would remember special dates. To me, he was the kind of people who couldn't even remember his own birthday.
"Un... That day was my brother's birthday. I told my mother I was going
out to buy him a present but then I went to meet you guys."
I giggled, never expected he had such good memory.
"That's the beginning of our story."
I looked at him, eyes widely opened. He always said something unsuitable I knew, but I didn't think he was as dumb as that.
"What are you talking about?"
I managed a giggle and lay onto the floor, trying to move away from his intense gaze.
"It has been almost ten years already. I don't want to wait any longer"
His tone was clear and determined, telling me he knew very well what he was talking about.
"Wait for what?"
Softly I whispered, terribly confused, and surely didn't like the topic.
"The ending of our story."
He said. A short answer, but the meaning was so deep that I was almost drowned.
"It had ended a long time ago. The day I walked out of your apartment it had ended."
I drew some cool fresh air into my chest and answered, not giving him a
sign of weakness.
"It had not. We hadn't chosen how we wanted it to end."
He held me back, his fingers clenching tightly around my wrist. The fingers which magically performed the most beautiful music, the ones which gave me so many feelings, so many emotions.
I sighed. I didn't want to fight. His words brought me too much to think
and feel. I didn't want to.
"You want me just because you had lost me."
For the next minute no one said a thing. His words echoed within the soundless stage, and in my heart. Perhaps in his heart too. I felt his clench loosened, his fingers brushed slightly against mine as he released me.
"I've made my choice since a long time ago but I never got a chance to tell you. No matter what, you must listen to it right now. Please believe me. This is going to be the frankest thing I've ever said in my life..."
Still closing my eyes, I hope I could shut my ears as well. I didn't want
to know. How much effort have I used to deceive myself that I knew nothing?
"Forget it Tono... It had been too long... I've already forgotten
everything, so should you..."
I opened my eyes and stared at him, didn't know how I should feel. I almost laughed at what he said. How innocent. Like a little child. What did he mean by 'start all over again'? Like pulling down a Lego tower and build it up again? How nice it would be if everything could really start all over again...
I shook my head, wanted to argue back but I didn't know what to say. It wasn't the same. It was totally different.
"I love you."
His voice sounded again, not letting the silence grow.
"How about you? Please let me know... Do you love me?"
All I did was sigh, a really deep sigh, refused to answer his question.
He didn't force an answer from me. He only managed a slight smile on his blank face.
"I'm still waiting. But before the tenth year, our story must have its ending..."
It was the last sentence he left me with.
I didn't know what other words should I use to describe the concert
Performing in front of two hundred thousand audiences was like a dream coming true. A dream you never expected to come true. I had never felt as happy and satisfied in my life, until the music faded, and the lights of the stage got turned off.
The concert had ended.
Due to the terrible traffic jam on the road back to Tokyo, all of us had no choice but staying in the backstage, reading through the comment sheets from the audiences. But anyways no one was in the mood of going home and sleep. We were still too excited to calm ourselves down, and for me, I got something else to be troubled about.
Every soft click of my watch echoed in my heart, especially when everyone
was reading in silence. I looked up from my pile of sheets, quickly glanced
at the time. In less than half-an-hour, the day was going to end.
I saw from the corner of my eyes that he was often glancing at me. I felt a terrible pressure, forcing me to think of an answer. Wanted to escape from it, I picked up my pack of cigarette and dashed out of the room, hoping to get some fresh air.
I turned on the lights of the stage, and settled down on the floor in the
middle of it, gazing around like what I did the morning before. The staff
who were busy cleaning up the venue had left one by one, as it was far after
time of their working hours.
Giving my cigarette another puff, I glanced up at my watch for the 7th
time. 11:53. No matter how many times I checked the time it was still a few
minutes before midnight.
Really, not long later, I saw him. But he wasn't looking for me. I saw him walking towards the exit.
He was leaving, he decided not to wait for my answer anymore...
My heart suddenly shivered. I slowly stood up, my eyes couldn't move away from him. I had a very very strong but unknown feeling in my heart. I could do nothing but gaze at him, gradually disappearing into the dark...
Wasn't that what I want? I wanted him to leave my life completely didn't I? All the years I had been wishing and praying he would leave me in peace forever. If that's so, why the tears...?
I yelled, helplessly, but as loudly as I could. Yet he didn't stop walking away from where I was, walking away from me. Perhaps he couldn't hear me, perhaps he told himself not to hear. I didn't know. But I didn't go bother the messy thoughts in me this time. I could care nothing but stop him walking away. All I knew was I couldn't let him walk away...
I ran all the way down the stage and chased after him, wishing
desperately to catch him before he leave, before midnight. I used all my
strength, dashing as quickly as I could.
Finally, I was just a few metres behind him. I stopped running, panting
hard for air. He hadn't noticed me yet, still walking slowly towards the
I saw him giving a last puff to his cigarette then threw it away, and his
empty hand went dangling back and forth beside him as he walked.
I can still remember how he jumped slightly at my sudden appearance.
No one said a thing for a long time. Perhaps it wasn't too long, but it
felt like another ten years.
"Pay me and I'll be your lover."
I whispered. Softer than the mid-summer songs of cicadas.
"What do you want me to pay you with?"
I looked up and saw him smiled. A very soft smile, but enough. Very enough.
"Do you know what time it is?"
He didn't answer me, but pulled his hand away from mine and resumed
"Don't I deserve ten minutes?"
His giggles sounded remarkably clear in the summer air.
"For loving you 10 whole years."
Finally, I spoke out the truth. I never expected it would make me feel so
great. The air I breathed seemed to taste sweet all of a sudden.
He stopped walking and turned around, gazed at me quietly for a moment.
Slowly a weird expression crept onto his face. A crooked little pout, trying
to hold back his stupid arrogant smile.
Slowly he approached me, and softly held my hand in his. We gazed at the
tangling fingers, then smiled at each other. A sweet, satisfied smile,
knowing we had our answer - a satisfying one, the perfect one we had been
A gust of soft breeze blew over us again, messing up our hair a bit. We
chuckled at each other as our eyes got blocked. He pushed his light brown
ones to the back of his head, then gently placed his hand onto my strands,
brushing it softly, lovingly, like what he used to do.
"Short hair suits you better..."
He smiled, twisting my brown fringe with his slender finger.
"It suits your personality. Stupid, dumb, just like a 6 year-old kid."
I pouted and gave him a playful punch on his stomach. He winced with a naughty giggle, then we both laughed the most cheerful laughter for years.
Our laughter slowly disappeared into the night breeze, leaving us standing there under the glimmering summer stars, our lips attached to each other's, so as our hearts.
"I love you..."
I heard him whispering those three beautiful words again, touching me from the bottom of my heart. I smiled. I finally knew where my destiny was leading me to. It led me here. And right here, I found my destination for life - the arms of my beloved.
"I love you too..."
This is the end of our story, and also the beginning of a new one.
Yet I can conclude it to you in one sentence:
~ Owari ~
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