Chapter 2:

Starving For Closure

Left Behind

As i tried as hard as i could to hang in there for the rest of the day, the bell finally rang.

The day i loathed so much finally came to a end, or so i thought it did.

Nothing else happened, for the most part.

I made small talk with some of my classmates that were worried about what happened earlier, but through some lies and some acting i managed to hide it pretty well.

And most of it all, i made eye contact with Minami multiple times through out the day.

Im not sure if its because of anything special, but she sits right next to me, so i figured it'd end up like this.

For the most part it was devoid of meaning, but the feeling i got was that she was lonely, in some way.

I find it hard to believe that i think that after she became one of the friendliest people in the room, but i don't know what it was.

There was a certain dullness to all of her words, and i was certain of it. Even if she seemed to truly shine when she spoke her mind, and interacted, this wasn't how i saw it. "She wasn't this... fake?" i thought to myself, but it was pointless.

I don't know what it is, but my gut is telling me something is wrong with her.

As i stood up, and i got ready to leave, Haruno-sensei stopped me briefly to talk.

-Katagiri, are you okay? Your face looked pretty pale when you ran out earlier.

She showed me a concerned expression, and i got showered with guilt.

I smiled, as normally as i could and muttered the same lie i did earlier.

-It was my anemia. The anxiety i had about today made me feel worse than usual. I'll feel better soon, so don't worry, Haruno-sensei

She looked at me for a good second before moving her head side to side as to deny something, and she smiled at me again.

-If you say so, its fine. Whatever it is, take care of yourself, alright?

I nodded and waved goodbye to her.

She's pretty considerate for a teacher, but i guess it'd be awkward of her to ignore it completely.

More or less, i was grateful for her concern for me. Although i am lying to her, i figured it'd be better than explaining myself.

The walk back home seemed pretty devoid of life. The trees that seemed incredibly vibrant and pretty to me in the morning, now feel like nothing more than background noise, and my body feels twice as heavy as it usually does.

Im really weak, aren't i?

I shouldn't be this down over just meeting her.

But what if... Maybe i still like...

-No, no no. Hold up.

My heartbeat instantly speed up a little bit, and my face felt hot.

No, i don't, so lets stop with this now.

I pushed aside the one thought i've been scared of this entire time, and just figured i'd get something to eat on the way home, since i haven't eaten anything yet. I couldn't bring myself to eat at lunch, i was scared i'd end up throwing up from the anxiety.

Im lying to myself anyway, aren't i?

As i walked into a bakery store that was near my apartment, i bought a melonpan to eat, since i didn't want to eat anything too heavy.

I thought it looked tasty, but for some reason the thought of eating felt like a chore to me right now.

-No, you shouldn't, you idiot.

As i scolded myself for trying to excuse myself out of something so simple as eating, i sat down on the grass of a park that was right next to my home, and i finished eating quickly before staring at the orange-dyed sky.

I truly thought the sky looked beautiful today, as i tried as hard as i could to forget about everything for a little while.

For now, i didn't want to think of anything.

All i wanted, was this small moment of calm.

It'd be easy to just run away from things and pretend im okay, but im not doing that.

The wind started getting stronger, as to blow my thoughts away.

I must have spent around 15 minutes just sitting in silence, and as i picked my bag up and started walking away i heard a voice call my name.


I wasn't sure if i should play dumb, or just answer back, because i wasn't sure if i was happy or scared by her voice calling out to me.


Her green eyes were sparkling, and i felt i could get lost in them if i made eye contact for a second longer.

She looks different compared to before, but there's no doubt about it. She's still the person i fell in love with, and she was still just as beautiful as i knew she was.

My anxiety started to spike as she started walking closer to me.

I didn't realize i called out to her until i was able to snap out of it.

-Akane, I... im sorry, i don't know what to tell you...

She anxiously started fidgeting, as if she couldn't find the right words for anything, in shocking contrast to the social butterfly she appears to be at school.

-How about you sit down instead of standing there?

I told her firmly.

Just for now, please...

Give me all the strength you can, me.

-Umm.. Okay.

She sat down next to me, far closer than i expected her to.

My anxiety was killing me on the inside right now.

I want to scream and run away, because im scared

Just having her here is making me recall everything i wish i could erase off my mind

But i told myself i wasn't going to run away, so im not doing it.

No matter what happens after, just for now i want to be strong.

-Are you alright, Minami?

I asked her without looking at her eyes. In reality i wasn't able to.

If i looked her straight in her eyes, i wouldn't be able to tell her anything.

I would freeze out of panic, and i'd end up running away.

-Im fine, but why would you ask that?

She told me in a shaken, confused voice.

-I just wanted to know. You gave me the impression you weren't.

I whispered, defeated.

She hesitated in silence for a few seconds, before she answered. Her voice dropped the "natural and friendly" act she was putting on at school.

I knew it. This is how i remember your voice.

-Its hard. It seems like im doing fine, and i got along with everyone, but...

-Its hard, having to act in front of everyone.

I finished her sentence for her, cause i knew exactly what she was thinking.

She gasped and i could feel her gaze on my face.

-I... yeah, i guess so..

-Is it really necessary for you to do that?

My voice was hoarse, and i was visibly shaken up.

But it didn't matter, since i had no way to run away now. Just like i expected.

-I dont know... I felt like i needed to.

I clutched my arm with my hand, which was holding it ever since she showed up.

-Do you think that's gonna erase everything?

My voice had turned incredibly strained and shaky.

I was trying as hard as i could to keep myself in control, without letting my feelings blow up on me.

She gasped, but this time she sounded more panicked than before.

-No, i don't want it to erase anything...

I didn't interrupt her. I wanted her to tell me what she was thinking.

-I need to change. I can't keep being the way i used to.. Its the only wa...

-So, in the end its about guilt, right?

As i gripped my arm even tighter, i prepared myself to tell her.


-You ruined my life. You can't erase that, Minami.

Ahh, i've done it.

I can't go back after this.

It would be easier to hate her if i wasn't in love with her.. But i have to do this.

Im sorry, me. Im sorry, Minami.

-No matter what changes you try to do, you can't run away from what you did to me.

-I wasn't trying to...

-And even now, it's not completely your fault. I was the one who snapped, and you didn't do anything directly. It isn't nothing you should be this guilty about, and its nothing that you should be responsible for. But...

As i let go of my arm, where i could see my fingernails leaving marks in it from how hard i was gripping it, i spoke out. My voice sounded incredibly fragile.

-Minami, i hate you. I can't forgive you. And regardless of what you do i can't forget about it. Im going to hold this grudge against you no matter what.

I could see her eyes start tearing up. I grabbed her face with both of my hands, and moved her close to me.

So close, if it was meant to be, our lips would meet in this exact moment.

But they didn't.

-But i still love you.

And i confessed my love to her, again, for the last time.

Her eyes widened in shock and her face blushed.

-And that's why i don't care if i have to hold this grudge against you for days, months, or years. I will never feel the closure i should have had with you, my first love. And that's why, i want to ask you to give up. Don't try to make things right, don't try to do anything out of guilt..

I could barely throw out these words out. By now, the tears were falling down from my eyes, and they weren't stopping.

-I'll never be able to let go of the feelings i have for you this way. So don't try to act like you have to repent for what you did to me.

-I don't want the same Minami i've loved all this time to just turn into a dull person thanks to guilt. I don't want, and i don't need your pity.

I turned my back to her as i said this, and i could see the shadow of her hand reaching out to mine, but it fell short.

As her sobbing turned into crying, she gave me one last response.

-Im sorry, Akane. Im really sorry...

I wasn't sure if i wanted to turn around, embrace her and properly answer to her apology.

Or if i wanted to just leave her there, without telling her anything and just forgetting this ever happened.

All i felt was this cold run down from my head to my legs.

And i felt a rush of anger. I hated this stupid apology i knew she was going to give me more than anything, and i couldn't stand it.

Apologizing now won't do anything. You're too late.

It truly is too late for me, and for you, but...

-Don't be sorry for me. If its you, Minami, you'll be fine.

As the last drop of affection i had for her fell, i ran out of there as fast as i could.

I couldn't even make it out of the park, and the tears were already flooding down so hard i could barely see, and walk in a straight line.

My legs gave out, and i just fell to the ground on the door of my apartment.

I hate myself. I hate you, Minami. Why did i do this?

Why are you trying to do something for me? You should have forgotten about me.

I love you, Minami. I want you to forget about me.

I don't want you to forget about me.

As these thoughts repeated themselves over, over and over again in my head, i couldn't even bring myself to open the door.

I just sat there, with my face pressed against the door as i waved the last goodbye to the Minami that i used to love so much.

Maybe it isn't the right way, but i just wanted to cut this tiny thread that kept us linked together.

I will never be able to let go of my first love and i know it. I will never get to know whether my feelings were accepted or rejected.

I'll never be able to know what her lips feel like. I'll never be able to embrace her, and give her some peace of mind.

Deep down i knew it, it wasn't the right way to do things.

I'll be starving for some sort of closure about this relationship, if it can be called that for the rest of my life, probably.

But, no matter how ready i was for it, i can't stop myself from crying this much.