Silent Reverie

by Krystal-chan


A young man pulled his wool-knit cap lower over rusted auburn locks. Although the weather was quite warm, he wore a thin black jacket over simple black vestments. His boots were black and remarkably shiny. He had a quiet demeanor to him, and he stood, unnoticed in a darkened corner of the live house, watching eager young performers set up the stage for their set. Eyes obscured from view with dark-tinted glasses, he watched silently as many young hands lent help to the upcoming band. These young people sported rather outrageous hairstyles, the color of their locks the many different colors of the rainbow. A five-piece band, this one. The bassist was tall, and so thin that he seemed emancipated. Shiny strands of intense orange fell over his black kohl-rimmed eyes, a stark contrast to his pale, deathly white skin. His hair seemed to defy gravity, and many strands of it stuck up straight in the air. Rather beautiful, this one. He wore a tight black leather shirt, and a spiked dog collar adorned his swan-like neck. His firm legs were covered with tight vinyl, chains hanging down from his bondage belt. Chewing on his inner cheek, the young man’s eyes wandered over to the apparent vocalist, whose dark red hair fell in soft curls about his porcelain-like cheeks, falling halfway down his back. Any other would mistake him for a beautiful young woman, his beauty was so delicate. His makeup was applied with a skillful hand, lips rouged, and eyes perfectly defined. The vocalist was suddenly obstructed from his view by one of the guitarists, who appeared much more masculine than the latter two. Pieces of bright red stuck out haphazardly atop his head, and the sight of that messy red shock seemed to cause the young man’s heart to skip a beat. Or was it two? He didn’t know. His eyes now swooped down, drinking in every bit of the young red-head guitarist. Oh, he did look strikingly like another red-head guitarist who he knew dearly. The young man’s brow suddenly furrowed. Dearly? Since when did he think of this other guitarist as dear to him? Tearing his eyes away from the stage, the young man turned his head to scan the audience of awaiting eager young souls for something, anything to distract him. Much to his chagrin, he found cosplayers a plenty in this young audience, speckling the bland crowd with originality and color. Chewing on his lip, he cast his eyes down towards his shiny black boots. His heart seemed to pound in his chest. He felt foolish, and sighed as he leaned against the wall. He suddenly became aware of a presence, very close to him, and turned slowly to meet the gaze of a bright-eyed young teenage girl, who stared at him, her mouth slightly open. Her bangs were brushed to the left side, slightly covering her left eye, and her hair fell in a black bob to her shoulders. She was clad very much like many in the audience, in vestments of denim and cotton.
“Excuse me…Are you…are you…Terachi Shinya?” Her voice was soft and child-like, and she seemed to tremble before him. Her eyes were filled with hope. His heart seemed to drop. He did not wish to be recognized, did not wish to be bothered. But how could he turn away a fan? Easily. Kill the hope, kill the dream, kill it before it blossoms.
“Iie. I always get mistaken for him though, I look a lot like him! Sorry!” A fake laugh now. He was shaking his head, bringing his shoulders up in a shrug. The hope was dying, he could see it in the girl’s eyes. Good. She was apologizing, ducking her head in shame. To think that a member of Dir en Grey would come to a shabby little live house like this! Her cheeks burned and she felt foolish. No, she would never meet any of them. Shinya watched all this and kept silent. He watched her silently walk away.
The band was starting their sound check, the heavy electronic sounds of guitar and the deep, resonating thrum of bass filled the air. The audience started to make noise, clapping their hands and shouting. The girls squealed in excitement, standing in small groups as they giggled together and declared their fake love for their “favorite” band member. Very shortly, music filled the air. He smiled, as he realized this was a cover; it was a cover of the very song he had written. Nostalgia suddenly took over, and memories flooded his mind. Images lost and long gone fluttered before his eyes, and he felt a wave of sorrow flood his soul. On this very stage, he had performed once, many years ago. He was a different person then. He had played, seemingly oblivious to all else about him, except for the music and the beat that he created, the rhythm to his life itself. Oh yes, it was beautiful, the way they had played. They cared for nothing else. Not for money, not for stardom, but only for the music. For the music they would have died for. For the music they lived by. It was their air, it was their blood, it was their everything. Now, so much has changed. It was music, yes, but it was also gold and blood, and sex and lies. Something so pure, so wondrously beautiful had been corrupted and tainted, never to return to the purity that it once was. He would never be able to return to the way things were so long ago, when it was simply for the love of the music he had lived for. The need for the music that he had so loved. Looking down at his hands, he remembered words that had once been uttered, vows that had been taken. Vows that had easily been broken. It would always be for only the music, it would always be for only the love, they had said. It would never be for money, it would never be only a career, for the music would rise above all. These words all turned to be false, and they seemed to fade to nothing as the world around them seemed to grow more colorful, and the screams began to grow louder. The cries of adulation would now be forever etched in each of their minds, never to fade, never to grow silent. Yes, the music they still loved and cherished. They always would. But it would never be the same love that had blossomed so long ago…
Shinya sighed, music pulsating about him, and he felt the sting of tears behind his eyes. It had been on this very stage that he had fallen in love. A hopeless star-crossed lover, he, forever cursed to be unloved by the one he so hopelessly yearned for. He seemed to hug himself, wondering what it felt like to be in the other’s arms. A quick shake of the head, and those thoughts quickly left his mind as quickly as they had appeared. Scolding himself for behaving so childishly, his eyes traveled across the dimly lit stage, its horrible acoustics giving him a rather large migraine. He needed, no, he had to get out of the live house. It had been a horrible idea to come. And he had only wanted to see a few performances, not to relive the past.
Quickly turning on his heel, he was walking briskly, gently pushing through the crowd of painted faces and leather-clad bodies, his lungs screaming for fresh air, needing to be free of this smoke-filled cage. Without a last glance backwards, he managed to push himself towards the door, towards salvation. One more step, and cold, fresh air suddenly greeted him. He was inhaling gratefully, turning to walk down familiar alleyways, familiar streets. A dim streetlight flickered in the darkness, casting off a soft amber light. His heels clicked as he walked towards the awaiting taxi that had taken him here. He had paid the driver enough yen to stay in the same place for one whole day. Prying the door open, he slid in, the cold leather of the seat sending a chill through his body. Giving the driver an address that was rather close to his own, he sat back in the seat and turned his head to gaze out the window silently. The driver tried unsuccessfully to make conversation with him, and he responded in monosyllable words, feeling quite drained . A lone figure walking on the sidewalk suddenly struck familiarity within him, and he realized that it was Kaoru. He called for the taxi driver to pull to the curb, paid him a tip and quickly exited the cab, walking briskly down the sidewalk to Kaoru, who walked alone, head cast downward. He gently called Kaoru’s name, confused as to why he was here, alone, in the dark, and seemed to be even more concerned when he saw a tear-stained face slowly rise towards his. Once more, he repeated Kaoru’s name, this time with a hint of concern, and he reached out to touch him, but Kaoru shirked away. Shinya frowned.
“Daijoubou desu ka?”
“Shinya, I don’t have time to talk, come with me, we have to go to the hospital.” Without any explanation, Shinya realized that he was being tugged by Kaoru towards a parking garage that he wasn’t familiar with. What was Kaoru doing here so late at night? He instantly wiped this thought from his mind, as he realized that they were going to the hospital. Kaoru unlocked the car and Shinya was instantly in the passenger seat, fastening his safety belt.
“What happened?”
“I received a call from Totchi,” Kaoru’s voice was hoarse, and it cracked with emotion. Eyes filled with regret glanced at Shinya as he turned the ignition on. “It’s Die.”
Shinya felt his mouth go dry and his heart felt as if it stopped altogether. No, this couldn’t be happening. Something happened to Die, bad enough that Kaoru had shed tears. In all the years he had known Kaoru, he had never seen him shed a tear, except for when Hide had passed away, and when close friends were lost forever. Did this mean that Die was lost to them, forever? Shinya couldn’t even think of such a thing. He cursed himself for leaving his mobile at home. He started to panic, his eyes going wide as Kaoru continued to talk, but Shinya didn’t hear him. He felt as if he would vomit, and he realized that he was telling Kaoru to pull over, and he was instantly out the door and on the cold ground, retching his insides out. A sour, disgusting taste filled his mouth over and over again until he could hardly breathe. He was barely aware of Kaoru holding him up, telling him to be strong, telling him that they had to get to the hospital. He was choking, and Kaoru was hitting him on the back, hard enough to make him nearly fall forward. Finally, he could breathe, and he gulped in the cool night air gratefully, and with much of Kaoru’s help, he forced himself to stand and slide back into the passenger seat, slumped down. No, Die wasn’t dead, Kaoru reassured him. But he had tried to kill himself. In Toshiya’s own bathroom, too. Shinya didn’t hear much more after that. He suddenly found himself in a daze, and he realized that the car was moving again, that Kaoru was cursing and beating on the horn, that they were walking through the doors of the hospital, the scent of ammonia greeting his nostrils. Bright artificial lighting nearly blinded him. Where had his tinted glasses gone? He wondered briefly. Shinya was silent as he took in the sight of Toshiya, tears flowing freely down his cheeks, sobs racking his thin body. He barely was aware that he was wrapping his arms around Toshiya in a hug. He barely was aware of walking down the hospital corridor to round the corner into the Intensive Care Unit. He wasn’t aware of anything until his eyes fell upon the most abominable sight he had ever seen. A figure he hardly recognized seemed so small and fragile in the hospital bed. Tubes seemed to extend from his body, like horrendous plastic appendages. He was swaddled in gauze, and paler than the stark white hospital sheets. He appeared to be dead. Shinya could not believe that this broken body before him was the man he had loved, the man who never knew of his love, the man who he had lied to and declared his ‘hatred’ for. Then Shinya simply fell to the ground and saw nothing more. The world fell away from him and everything was silent.


to be continued

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