Jinsei no sokubaku - (Shackles Of Life)
It was a sunny summer afternoon, the birds were chirping in the trees right next to the Train station near Matsue city, enriching the dead silence with a melodic and relaxing sound.
Daiki, a young male in his 20s, dressed in formal black clothes, with long silver-gray hair, has just returned from a short trip to his friend's memorial.
Only a few people are waiting for the train along with him.
Bored as he is, he takes a look around him with half-shut eyes.
<< Only 5 minutes left until the train comes >>
With a big sigh, he crosses his arms and closes his eyes trying to relax, embracing those last 5 minutes.
A conversation can be heard from the distance.
Unknown Girl 1: Did you hear about that boy?
Unknown Girl 2: The one who was sent to the hospital last week?
Unknown Girl 1: Yes that one, I heard he escaped without even healing fully!
Unknown Girl 2: No way! How did he manage to pull off such a thing… I mean, no one saw him leaving?
Unknown Girl 1: It's possible considering that he has no relatives or friends.
Unknown Girl 2: Poor thing, I hope he is ok.
A ringtone sounded from someone's phone and soon enough the sound of the train crossing by followed along.
Daiki opens his eyes as he gets up, preparing himself to enter the train.
He takes a look to his right noticing the two girls he heard earlier.
They appear to be some high school girls from nearby.
Without any expression, he looks straight and enters the train as he gets separated from them who’ve entered the back doors of the train.
It's populated inside but still, there is a dead silence, only this time there are no birds to enlighten the scene.
"What a moody atmosphere.." He thought while lowering his vision.
"Though someone can still find this silence relaxing.."
The sunbeams are flickering inside of the train as it speeds up.
The silence breaks immediately when his gaze locks on a teenage boy standing in a corner with a really tired and empty look on his face.
His clothes appear to be dirty and his hair a bit messy.
He appears to be wearing a hospital robe tucked in dirty, ripped jeans full of stains.
Even though his eyes point to the floor, it goes unnoticed how empty his stare was, feeling almost as if he gazes into the void.
Something isn't right.
Daiki keeps observing the boy.
Before he could catch a single thought, the train reaches the next station and soon enough it floods with a crowd.
It's the most populated station as it's located near the city's center.
Suddenly the train becomes a mixture of all kinds of noises.
Conversations could be heard all over the place yet there are so many taking place at once, making it almost impossible to understand a thing.
"Ugh..now that I think about it, it wasn’t that bad earlier."
Daiki thought, having a troubled expression on his face as he pinches the upper part of his nose.
After a few stations, the crowd settles down a bit, creating a balance between noise and silence.
He searches around for the boy but he is nowhere to be found as if he’s magically disappeared along with the crowd.
"Hmmm…." he hummed while rubbing his chin.
The next station is here and he immediately leaps off the train as if he was in a hurry.
As he gets off, he gets a glimpse of a bridge in the near distance.
It’s “Kyodai Bridge” the biggest bridge in the entire city, sizing 130m in total, with a gap of 90 meters from the water, making it also the highest bridge in the city.
Despite being almost built, the bridge is still in progress.
The mayor of the city passed away 2 months ago resulting in postponing any ongoing events along with projects inside the city.
After only 3 minutes he makes it to the bridge.
There is a strong breeze due to the height, blowing Daiki’s hair backward.
Despite the breeze, the place is really quiet with the mix of those two creating a soothing and nostalgic atmosphere.
His pace has slowed down as he tries to catch his breath for a few seconds...
He scans the area with his eyes.
Some stop signs can be seen along with “Danger, work-in-progress DO NOT ENTER” ones.
No one seems to be here except…
A boy is standing on the edge of the bridge, hesitating whether to jump or not.
Taking a better look Daiki identifies the boy to be the same boy he saw on the train.
“Found you..” he whispered
He takes a deep breath..
He shouted as loud as he could, drawing the attention of the boy who looked at him in shock.
“Come down and let’s talk it out, no need to make a scene, I was just like you once”
Daiki starts to move closer to the boy very carefully, being at a distance of only 10 meters away.
The boy looks at him with a blank yet shocked stare as if he didn’t listen to what he said.
Daiki stops for a second in fear of scaring the boy because of him coming closer.
The boy’s legs start to tremble as if he was struggling.
The boy seems quite weak and about to collapse any moment now.
“Hey don’t fall asleep now!” Daiki shouts with a troubled face.
The boy’s consciousness fades..making him lose his balance and slip...
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