| kaiya & tetsuya |
you could be happy.
| kaiya & tetsuya |
| kaiya & tetsuya | Idle fingers traced the rim of an empty glass sitting in a ring of condensation on a smooth coffee table, brushed metal polished, low to the ground. Tetsuya's eyes were half-closed, blocking out the silver of light punching through the gap in his living room curtains. The phone on his chest laid idle, rising with each lazy breath, out of time with the sounds of Poe, soft and low from the tiny, expensive speakers wired almost invisible in each corner.
He picked it up, checking the time, and punched a message in -- then shook his head and deleted it. Kaiya was running a little late; but he wasn't her keeper.
Had the reason for her tardiness been anything less than legitimate, the girl might have messaged him with some excuse, but until her knuckles connected with his front door, the inbox on his cellphone would remain vacant -- of messages from her, that was.
The taste of nicotine bathed on her tongue as she knocked, fingers smoothing over the door and then dropping lifelessly to her side.
"It's open." Tetsuya had stopped answering doors personally years ago. He glanced, briefly, at the door across the living room -- smooth, impossibly white, locked. He changed his mind then, rising to his feet with bottle, glass, and ashtray gathered up in hand. It was pointless to attempt to clean up, really: the scars on his hands had healed, but she'd still seen him at his worst. Still there was a drink cabinet in the living room, the type for entertaining, and he tucked these things away.
Slipping her hand down, Kaiya tried the doorknob, succeeding only in discovering that the door was, in fact, locked. Somewhere in the back of her mind, she imagined her brother scurrying around at the pace of a turtle on sleeping pills, and it put a tiny smile on her face as she tucked a strand of hair behind one ear.
The click at the door drew his attention -- and his curses as he shut the cabinet and ran to the front, correcting the mistake with a puzzled frown. "...at least I thought it was open," Tetsuya muttered, sending a glare at the doorknob as though it was somehow the object's fault. He stepped aside to let Kaiya in, letting the door swing shut behind them both.
"Sometimes reality and what you think are two completely different things," commented the Elite, stepping out of her pumps as to not scratch the floor. "I would've kept knocking, just so you know."
"I know." The socialite replied, pocketing his phone with half a smile. "How're you?" He asked, because when he remembered, he always did. Even if the classes weren't what she liked; even if home wasn't what it should have been. He went to the kitchen, procuring fresh glasses. "Want a drink?"
"I should say no, but yes, please." Some few steps later, she found herself seated on the couch, fingers digging into the ebony material of her stockings. "I'm..." A list of adjectives ran through her brain like the extensive phonebook on her step-brother's cellphone, rattling off options. "... okay, given the circumstances." And these were circumstances that were present every day of her life. She'd learned to deal with it. "I'm better because the weather's so nice," she finished airily, eyes to the window.
"Better," he agreed quietly, finding the word adequate if not entirely descriptive. A cursory glance into the fridge revealed little in the way of nutritious drink -- and his milk was out of date. Tetsuya sighed -- really, he was hopeless. Ice water, then. He carried a glass back to her and sank in the opposite chair, sipping thoughtfully for a few moments in silence.
"What would you change," he asked, finally, "if you could?"
"Anything?" The ring on her right hand clinked quietly against the offered glass she'd taken.
Within reason, he thought, but curiosity propelled him past vocalizing such a restraint.
With lips against the rim of her glass, Kaiya closed her eyes, expression blank. It was only when they fluttered open again that she spoke. "I would change our parents' relationship back then. No cheating, no deceit, no snide comments, no animosity boiling over the dinner table. Because then we would've been able to stay together, been free of crap new families, gone to school together, been better people, better siblings."
She smoothed fingertips over a faint rip in her thigh. "But then we might've come out completely different. And then I think, maybe it's better this way. Maybe this way... it's easier."
There was no lack of solemnity in her gaze, which trailed over to him. "What about you?"
"I think things went wrong for Ryoichi a long time before he got married. Sometime things went wrong and it started the whole cycle. I don't think we'll ever know what that was." Half an answer and half not, he set the glass down and stood, tugging keys out of his pocket.
"If you want, though..." A pause. He glanced back towards the door, always locked and never open. It had been that way for months now. Long past the ridiculous decorator, long since TaeHyun had gotten out of the hospital and settled in his own place, up in the city, with Princess due to move in. "Some things can change." He spun the keys around to one, and held it out for her.
Naively, the younger girl took it, expression contorted into confusion. "What does it open?"
"That door." Tetsuya murmured -- with a gesture to follow as he found a piece of wall to lean against, arms crossed in front of his chest. "Go for it."
Up on her feet, she padded over to the door, foreign key in hand. The object was turned over a few times, as though touching it in varying ways would relieve her curiosity. And so the teeth of the silver key eased inside the lock, and a hand twisted the knob open.
She saw empty hall.
"Tetsuya?" The astonishment and perplexion rang clear in her voice.
He stood, lanky and thin behind her, reaching over one of the girl's slender shoulders to flick on a lightswitch. The hall space was short, the next door only some steps away yawning open to a barely visible room -- empty and white as unpainted canvas.
"Go ahead," he suggested; the apartment's real master bedroom unused and empty as it had been for months.
To be in a state of overwhelment would be an understatement on her part, but even so, she didn't allow it to show on her face as, slowly, she advanced into the new, empty space. It smelt vacant, and looked even more as such, and when Kaiya skimmed her hand across a wall, she feared the paint would be fresh.
"Oniichan.." Steps led her to the doorway of the master bedroom, and finally she pivoted to connect their eyes. "... thank you." The words were soft, her appreciation resonating.
"Don't thank me yet," he quipped. "That bitch we call a mother has to let you move out." But if the temperment of her son was to be trusted, Tetsuya would win in this instance: he wanted very little, but what he wanted, he wanted fiercely and it would be his. It was a trait he'd inherited from his father.
"Assuming you want to come, that is," he added, casually, as though the whole affair meant much less to him than it actually did.
"To convince her to, you mean?" The prospect of speaking with her mother on any kind of terms revolted Kaiya, who came to a sound, final conclusion that she would rather eat someone else's bile than partake in any sort of conversation with that woman. Multiple times.
"Threaten, blackmail, and otherwise insult if necessary," Tetsuya added darkly. He had no kind words for a woman who'd had none for him when she'd walked out with his sister all those years ago. "But you haven't said yes or no."
There wasn't any hesitance in her face, but she observed their surroundings once again, imagining what could be and what she wanted it to be.
"Yes," she breathed, facing him again. "I want to be there."
"Then it'll happen," Tetsuya said softly. "We'll make it."
Idle fingers traced the rim of an empty glass sitting in a ring of condensation on a smooth coffee table, brushed metal polished, low to the ground. Tetsuya's eyes were half-closed, blocking out the silver of light punching through the gap in his living room curtains. The phone on his chest laid idle, rising with each lazy breath, out of time with the sounds of Poe, soft and low from the tiny, expensive speakers wired almost invisible in each corner.