Chapter 12:


Skipped a Beat

It’s 20th December, Friday. Went on a trip to Kyoto at the start of this month. Nothing much happened except Hina tried to confess to Eiji. And of course, he said no. He openly told them that he liked Aoi but since she has changed so much, he thought it was better he doesn’t. So right now, he’s not thinking of dating anyone or anything like that.Bookmark here

A week until new year arrives. Right now, I’m going to school on foot. It’s getting colder and colder. My hands are freezing cold. It’s 08: 25 right now, I wonder If they have reached or not. Bookmark here

Oh, they are all here, before meBookmark here

“Morning” (Takahashi)Bookmark here

“Morning” (Eiji, Hina and Sachi)Bookmark here

“Sachi, how are you feeling?”Bookmark here

“I’m fine…”Bookmark here

“You don’t look fine though…”Bookmark here

“Well, of course I wouldn’t be fine, 1 week is left”Bookmark here

Takahashi: Sachi is starting to look stressed now, Bookmark here

“Anything in mind?” Bookmark here

“Nothing” (Sachi)Bookmark here

“You just have to delay a little so that you sit in a different plane” (Takahashi)Bookmark here

“Nothing we can do right now. Winter vacations will start soon, let’s just wait till the year ends” (Eiji)Bookmark here

“Yeah…”Bookmark here

Takahashi: no one is talking much, Sachi looks too stressed to even talk. Things have been getting worse ever since we came back from the trip. Sachi started to worry about her death. And since we know we can’t do anything. We are just here, sitting hopelessBookmark here

“Takahashi don’t think much about it. Maybe something will happen, and I don’t have to go, or dad doesn’t move away. We can’t do anything about it”Bookmark here

“I know but… I just can’t stop thinking about next year”Bookmark here

“Don’t worry, when you go back to first year, you can maybe do something about it.”Bookmark here

“I don’t even know if I go back or not”Bookmark here

“Then just accept that I die”Bookmark here

“What about you?”Bookmark here

“I’ll just die”Bookmark here

“What about others”Bookmark here

“Takahashi, people come and go in life. This is not something new” (Eiji)Bookmark here

“For me it is…”Bookmark here

Nothing… no one is talking… is this how it was supposed to end. Bookmark here

(Takahashi at home)Bookmark here

Now when I think about her, I regret not listening to her. She told me, if I can’t bear the pain of her leaving, I shouldn’t get close to her. At that time, she felt like a really good person to leave, so just wanted to be with her. But now, I keep thinking that I should start distancing myself from her… should I? what if it hurts her… does it really matter? She’ll die in weak anyway… now I’m getting angry at everything… is this going to be middle school all over again? No, this is way different. I shouldn’t have told her to not come here anyways. That’s it, when I go back to first year. I’ll never go meet her. Maybe that way she won’t appear in my life, and I’ll forget her… did her knowing about her death do any good? Its better if she doesn’t even know about me. That way, she will live… Bookmark here

I’ll talk about this with other on new year, probably the morning of 1st January. For now, I’ll just listen to music. Don’t even feel like watching anime now…Bookmark here

Huh… Bookmark here

From Eiji to Takahashi: For Sachi, please try to be cheerful. Don’t talk much about her death. You have probably noticed how she reacted today.
To Eiji: I had an idea, what If I don’t tell her anything about plane crash and other stuff. Then she won’t come here, and she’ll be fine.
To Takahashi: When you go back? I don’t know. Whatever you did last year is resulting into this year. So, if you don’t tell her, I don’t know what will happen.
To Eiji: What if this is the only way to save her
To Takahashi: Or it could mess up more things. And are you really okay with that? Not meeting Sachi? You won’t forget her, but she won’t know you at all.
To Eiji: it doesn’t matter what I think. If Sachi lives I’m happy with that
To Takahashi: I see. Well, you can try that when you go back. But for now, don’t let Sachi get sad or anything
To Eiji: Yeah, I won’tBookmark here

Every time something comes to mind, and I feel like yes, I can do something, Eiji just makes me more hopeless… Everything I did last year, resulted into this year. So, If I don’t tell her, she doesn’t come to Tokyo… and then when I go to 3rd year… there’s no one, Aoi will be in Ichikawa, or wait, she said that she might come back, so I’m not sure about that. But yeah, Sachi will be in Kyoto probably. And then going to meet her will be stupid. I should just give up. When I go back… I won’t tell her anything. So, things don’t end up like this at all. And I will have Eiji and Hina, it’s not like I’ll be all alone. Yeah, everything will be fine. Bookmark here

(Some days later)Bookmark here

My routine is so messed up, it’s 12: 00 in the morning and I’m just waking up… Oh… Sachi messaged around 10: 26Bookmark here

From Sachi to Takahashi: Want to go somewhere together?
To Sachi: Where?
To Takahashi: Oh, I thought you died
To Sachi: Seriously? Death jokes?
To Takahashi: Well, you were not answering your phone eitherBookmark here

Takahashi: oh yeah… she also has called a multiple timesBookmark here

To Sachi: I was just sleeping, where do you want to go?
To Takahashi: I don’t know, just somewhere out, beach or a store or anything
To Sachi: what about others?
To Takahashi: No, just us alone. You know we have never hung out, just us. So, I thought before I go…Bookmark here

Takahashi: this is the first time she’s acting like this. It’s kind of making me happy. If I can’t do anything about her death, at least I can spend some time with her Bookmark here

To Sachi: okay, where do you want to meet first?
To Takahashi: just like before, come to the school in about 20 minutes. We’ll go somewhere from there
To Sachi: OkayBookmark here

I should get up now. Don’t want her to wait there.
I think I should go on a bike. Can’t get to school in 10 minutes on foot.Bookmark here

(10 minutes later)Bookmark here

She’s standing there, outside the school gate. Like someone who was going to confess to meBookmark here

“You came” (Sachi)Bookmark here

“I would, you called” (Takahashi)Bookmark here

Takahashi: her eyes are red…Bookmark here

“Sachi, what’s wrong?” (Takahashi)Bookmark here

“Huh… what?”Bookmark here

“Your eyes… and your voice… have you been___”Bookmark here

“Shh… yes…”Bookmark here

“New year?”Bookmark here

“Yeah…”Bookmark here

“Sorry…”Bookmark here

“For what?”Bookmark here

“For telling you about all this last year”Bookmark here

“You regret meeting me?”Bookmark here

“No… not at all, just what you are feeling right now”Bookmark here

“Right now? Haha… it’s nothing… just imagine what it would feel like to know your own deadline”Bookmark here

“I can fix this”Bookmark here

“How?”Bookmark here

“I won’t tell you about your death or anything when I go back”Bookmark here

“And you think that solves anything?”Bookmark here

“It will, you won’t come here”Bookmark here

“And not meet you? Are you fine with that?”Bookmark here

“No… but at least you live”Bookmark here

“I think I have never mentioned this before but, whether you had told me or not, I would have come to Tokyo anyway”Bookmark here

“Huh… How?”Bookmark here

“My dad, he moved here because of his job. I have told you, that he won’t listen to me unless there’s legitimate reason. This was just a coincidence that I had to move to Tokyo”Bookmark here

“But I told you about which school to attend. And your death… if I hadn’t you would be living a normal life right now”Bookmark here

“You think that this plane crash happens because of you? No, it happens because I have to go back to Kyoto. And no matter what you do, this remains the same”Bookmark here

“I know but…”Bookmark here

“Takahashi, don’t mess anything up when you go back, find me and tell me everything about second Year”Bookmark here

“How will I know where you live?”Bookmark here

“I’ll send you the address later, remember that”Bookmark here

“Okay…”Bookmark here

“And don’t regret getting close to me, even if you had walked away. I would have followed you. I wanted to be close to you, don’t blame yourself”Bookmark here

“But if you never knew me, you wouldn’t have wanted to get close to me”Bookmark here

“Idiot! I enjoyed the time I spent with you; I don’t want to forget this year. And I’m sure you don’t either. If you do something stupid when you go back. I won’t know about you Hina or Eiji.”Bookmark here

“Okay… I will tell you everything when I go back”Bookmark here

“Thanks… this is probably my last year, and I liked the way I spent it with you guys. If you act on your own and change anything…”Bookmark here

“I understand, I won’t do anything stupid.”Bookmark here

Takahashi: what should I do now… this is awkward…Bookmark here

“How have you been lately?” (Sachi)Bookmark here

“Just okay… don’t feel like doing anything. Just listening to music mostly.”Bookmark here

“I See...”Bookmark here

“Yeah...”Bookmark here

“Don’t tell others we met like this”Bookmark here

“Ok… I won’t”Bookmark here

“I think I should go home now...”Bookmark here

“I’ll walk with you...”Bookmark here

“Okay...”Bookmark here

Even though she’s going away in some days, nothing comes to my mind to talk about… this silence is hurting… walking back home like this… feels like the last time… because she won't be here after the new year festival… I don't want her to go…Bookmark here

“Can I be selfish?” (Takahashi)Bookmark here

“Huh…? (Takahashi hugs her)” (Sachi)Bookmark here

“What if I say I don’t want you to go” (Takahashi)Bookmark here

“What do you expect me to say, okay I won’t?”Bookmark here

“No… But if I don’t let go… you won’t go anywhere...”Bookmark here

“Takahashi, you are acting childish again… this won’t change anything”Bookmark here

“Your leaving hurts...”Bookmark here

“I know, it hurts me too. But what can we do?”Bookmark here

“Nothing...”Bookmark here

“Exactly… So, you have to let me go… physically and mentally. I’m sorry if this sounds rude. But a day will come when you are happily living your life, and you don’t even remember me probably. I know it hurts now, but it will get better (Takahashi lets go)” (Sachi)Bookmark here

“You are such a crybaby, haha” (Sachi)Bookmark here

“Shut up… don’t look...”Bookmark here

“Haha… I’m sorry Takahashi, I have to leave like this. But just accept it. How long are you going to keep doing this?”Bookmark here

“I don’t know...”Bookmark here

“Remember this park?”Bookmark here

“How can I forget…”Bookmark here

“You were crying here too”Bookmark here

“You seriously have to mention that…”Bookmark here

“If I had known at that time, how sensitive you can be… I would have tried to stay away myself… but probably would have failed…”Bookmark here

“I’m Sorry…”Bookmark here

“Stop apologizing. It was worth it, meeting you. So, thanks”Bookmark here

“Yeah, I feel the same”Bookmark here

“Yeah, so don’t be sad that I’m going. Be happy that you met me”Bookmark here

Takahashi: this feeling… it’s the same I felt when Sachi stepped Infront of me to save me from Shinichi…Bookmark here

“I wish… I had time to get to know more about you, so that I could properly fall in love with you…”Bookmark here

“Haha… since when did you become the romantic guy”Bookmark here

“I don’t know… just said what I was feeling”Bookmark here

“I feel the same”Bookmark here

“Oh…”Bookmark here

“I’ll be going now; my house is this way”Bookmark here

Takahashi: my heart is screaming don’t go while my mind is saying let go, it’s enough…Bookmark here

“I see… take care”Bookmark here

“I will, bye”Bookmark here

“Bye”Bookmark here

(After reaching home)Bookmark here

Aaah… I’m so tired… Sachi messaged… it must be the address. yeah, it is. How will I remember it? I can’t take anything back with me… except my memories. Learning is the only way I guess. Bookmark here

I should just go to sleep again for now.Bookmark here

Real Aire
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