Greater Than The Sum (Finished!) - All days now up: 11/4/12

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BlackWaltzTheThird
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Re: Greater Than The Sum - Days 0 - 69 now up lol: 1/4/12

Post by BlackWaltzTheThird » Tue Apr 03, 2012 8:04 am

Day Sixty Six - Morning

Knock knock knock.

I'm asleep. I can't hear you.

Knock knock knock.

No, go away. This is a good dream.

Knock knock knock.

There's nobody there. La la la la la la!

"Kacchan~ wake up!"

Now there's a voice I haven't heard in a while. I look over at my clock; 6:45am. Urgh, Misha, why are you up this early? This is sleepy time, damn you.

"Kacchan, come on~! We~ have a message for you!"

Oh dear god, this can't be good. But I can't get back to sleep now. Fuuuuu... Against my better judgment, I flop out of my bed - my warm, cosy, comfortable-ish bed - and make my way over to the door. I hesitate for a second with my hand on the knob, before opening the door to reveal the student council duo. Surprise, surprise.

"You two do know what time it is, right?"
"Of course, Kacchan~! But like I said, we have a message~ for you!"
"And it couldn't have waited until later? It's Sunday, everyone wants to sleep in - myself included."
Shizune gives me a stern look and signs something to Misha. "Shicchan says you shouldn't be so slack~! Early mornings are good for you~!"
It takes great restraint to resist the urge to laugh. "If you say so. I'm awake now, so what's this message?"

Misha screws her face up in concentration. I'm a little confused, until I notice neither Misha nor Shizune are carrying any letters or notes of any kind. Evidently noticing her friends inability to remember the message, Shizune signs the communiqué to Misha, whose eyes light up in recognition.

"Oh, that's right~! Thank you, Shizune. The message was from Oura in our year~."
"Oura?" I ponder the name. I don't know anyone named Oura. Strange.
"Yes~, Oura. Daisuke Oura. He said~ - "
"I don't care. I don't want to hear anything from him. Is that all you woke me for?"
"He said it was urgent~... that's why we came so early~."
"If it's so urgent, why not just come tell me himself?"
"I don't know, Kacchan~..."
"Forget it. I'm going to try and go back to sleep. Later, girls."

I turn my back on the girls and start to close the door, when I feel a tapping on my shoulder. I sigh and turn back to the girls. I begin to say 'what now' in exasperation, but I stop myself, as it is not Misha in front of me, but rather Shizune. She's holding up a page torn out of a notepad for me to take. I meet her gaze. Her eyes appear to be communicating in lieu of her speech, or lack thereof; they're urging me to take the note. I do so, if only to get the student council off my case. On the note is a hastily scribbled message, although the cursiveness of the writing belies the speed with which it was scribed. I'll look at it later. Maybe. Satisfied their work is complete, the terrible twosome depart with a trademark nod and wave.

I shut the door and stumble back to my bed, taking a seat upon the blanket strewn across the mattress. I look at the note in my hand, seeing it but not taking it in. Stupid Daisuke. I crush the note in my fist dramatically. A girl walking past my window at that exact second sees this, and gives me a funny look, before moving on. Why are you people such early risers? I throw the note at the wall in disgust, and attempt to fall back to sleep.

After an hour of restless tossing and turning, I give up on any extra hours of sleep. The sun is well and truly up now. I wonder what I can do today. I make to grab my phone and send a message asking what Seto, Naomi and Miko are up to, but remember that it was irreparably damaged in the accident. That reminds me, I have to go buy a new one. Funny how out of all the people and possessions in the car that night, the only thing that suffered any lasting consequences was my phone. Not funny, though, is that if I want to talk to anyone right now I'll have to go to their rooms and wake them. Considering my reaction to being woken early on a Sunday not an hour ago, I decide against being a hypocrite and leave my friends in peace.

So again, the question is asked. What can I do? I look around my room for inspiration. A scrunched up ball of paper in the corner attracts my attention. Ugh. I haul myself to my feet and walk over to the discarded note, unravelling it as I pick it up.

'Daisuke said for you to meet him on the roof as soon as possible.
By the way, if you read this, you owe me 1000 yen. Shizune.'

As if you're ever getting that 1000 yen, Shizune. Something strikes me as odd about Daisuke wanting to meet on the roof, but I'm not entirely sure what. Nevertheless, I have something to do. I give everything in my room one last cursory glance, in the hope I find something else to occupy my time. No luck. Dammit. Roof date with Daisuke it is. I quickly shower and dress, and make my way over to the school building.

As I enter the school building, I realise I've never been up to the roof before. I assume one would have to go up to the top floor first to access the roof, so I make my way there. It's a start. When I get there, I look to the little sign at the top of the stairs for directions. According to it, the roof access isn't far away, just up a flight of stairs in the middle of the hall... oh. Just as it clicks why it was odd that Daisuke wanted to meet on the roof, I spot him, seated in his wheelchair, right where the stairs to the roof are. I reluctantly approach Daisuke, making my presence known by clearing my throat.

"You took your sweet time, Akarada. I'm nearly out of coffee."
"Forgive me for preferring to sleep on a Sunday. God knows it'd be a first for you."
"...Not too keen on the niceties, are we?"
"No. Why should I be? What do you want, Daisuke?"
"I've always wanted to go up to the roof."

I take a second to process what Daisuke just said. He invited me up here. He wants to go to the roof. You've gotta be kidding me.

"You sent the student council after me at quarter to seven in the morning just so I could carry you up to the roof?! What the fuck do you think I am, some kind of pack mule? Hell no."
"Not at all. I sent the student council after you so I could apologise."

What? Apologise? Does. Not. Compute. Bzzzrt, error, error. Brain rebooting in 3, 2, 1...

"You... want to apologise?"
"Don't make me repeat it, Akarada. Now, are we going up to the roof or are we going to talk about serious business in this here corridor?"
"So I do have to carry you up to the roof. Figures."
"No. I think I can manage the stairs by myself. All you have to do is bring my wheels."

I give the proposal a few seconds thought. What have I got to lose? I came here to talk to Daisuke, and he wants to talk on the roof. I may as well go with it. I nod my assent to Daisuke, and watch as he hefts himself out of his chair and onto the first step. Daisuke awkwardly shuffles around on his non existant legs to face away from the stairway, shifts his hands to the edge of the stair above him, and lifts his body up to it. As he starts to repeat the process for the remaining stairs, I find the latch which unlocks the folding mechanism of Daisuke's chair - a feature that in the modern day and age is commonplace among permanent wheelchair users - and collapse the chair into a somewhat less bulky form.

I wait at the bottom of the stairwell for Daisuke to reach the landing at the midpoint of the stairs before I ascend them myself; carefully stepping around Daisuke and opening the door that leads to the roof. I unfold, set down and lock Daisuke's chair, using it to prop open the door, and wait for Daisuke to make his way up the remaining stairs. Slowly. And, I presume, with great effort. I never realised the convenience of legs when it comes to climbing stairs before. It's just one of a long list of things coming to a school like Yamaku has taught me about taking things for granted. Eventually, Daisuke reaches the summit of the stairwell and climbs back into his chair. Free to move as he wishes again, Daisuke rolls around the roof briefly, before settling on a spot overlooking the grounds on the south side.

"Was it worth the effort of getting up here?" I ask.
Daisuke ponders this for a few seconds before responding.
"I think it was. It gives me a new perspective on things. The whole last two weeks have."

Daisuke turns about his waist in order to look me in the eye as I lean against a wall to his side. The usual stern, possibly aggravated, look he would give me is non-existant. Instead, Daisuke looks like he's been through absolute hell the last two weeks. Deep, dark shadows under his eyes are indicative of a serious lack of sleep. His hair, although short as always, looks unkempt and messy. This extends to his beard, which looks as if it has been neglected entirely; its usual perfectly maintaned shape is lost under all the untamed growth.

"I've been a real bastard to you. From day one."
"Yeah, you have. At least you realise that now."
"It wasn't anything malicious at first, please understand that. Yeah I was a dick, but it just because I was still angry about Yamato and Reina. You reminded me of him, and so it made me think of my anger towards him."
"Maybe it wasn't malicious, but it was still a dick move."
"Yeah, yeah, I know. Anyway, Yamato was right about what he said at the concert; as time went on, and we started playing again - well, again for Seto, Naomi and myself - I did develop feelings for Naomi. Just like what happened with Reina, Naomi fell for someone else. She fell for you. And suddenly you didn't just remind me of Yamato, you became him."
"I became a guy who was lucky enough to have his affections returned in kind. Nothing more, nothing less. The problem still lies with you, Daisuke."

Daisuke takes a sharp breath, as if wounded. I am right though; it could have been any guy that Naomi fell for, but Daisuke was the one who took offense to it. No one ever pushed him, or bragged, or took any other antagonistic action. Having regained his composure, Daisuke continues his speech.

"You're right, Akarada. Of course, I was too blind to see it back then. My jealousy, my anger... they made me see a man who swept in and stole the heart of the girl I liked from right under my nose."
"I never stole anything. No one even knew you liked Naomi. You never showed it."
"Hmm... that was the excuse Yamato gave me when I confronted him about Reina all that time ago."
"It's not an excuse, it's the truth."
"Call it whatever you want, it's not important. What is important is why all this affected me the way it did. Can I trust you never to repeat what I am about to tell you?"
"I'll take it to my grave, if it's that important to you. Besides, this is, as you said, serious business, after all."
"Good. Listen up."

Daisuke turns his head away from me, and stares into the sky as he begins his story.

"All my life I'd lived with my Mom. Just me and her in a little house. I never knew my Father. But what I did know was that no matter how hard it was to look after a kid in a wheelchair, my Mom did everything she could to make my life as normal as possible. You have no idea how much respect I had for her; it can't have been easy working shifts, and driving me everywhere, being depended upon for even the simplest things young me needed to do."
"...You said 'had' respect."
"I know. I had respect for her. Not have. Not anymore."

Daisuke's hand curls into a fist as he utters the end of his statement.

"Shortly after I started tenth grade, she met him. He was rich, handsome, well connected... everything a woman could want. He was also gifted with a silver tongue. I could tell his words were sweet nothings. He tried to seduce my Mom; I told her, 'you shouldn't see this guy, he's trouble'. But she didn't listen. She started spending more and more time with him. All of a sudden I was by myself more often than not. Mom couldn't keep up with both looking after me and following him around."

"He had a solution. There was a school, one specially designed to cater for 'damaged goods'. He even used those words, but because of the power his words had over my Mom, she believed what he said. I wasn't her son any more. I was damaged goods. A burden. A liability. And so, through my Mom, he sent me away to Yamaku to be out of his way. I haven't seen either of them for over two years. I don't want to. I hate my Mom for believing him. But I hate him more for stealing my Mom away."

Daisuke turns back to face me, evidently done talking. I consider the meaning of what Daisuke has told me. The reason he got so angry about Yamato, and about me... it all makes perfect sense now.

"So when Reina chose to be with Yamato, you got angry because he was stealing away your girl, just like 'he' stole away your Mom..."
"Yes."
"And when you say I reminded you of Yamato, what you really mean was that I reminded you of 'him'..."
"Yes."
"And it would be reasonable to assume your bias against Yamato's and my playing is caused by this?"
"...Also yes."
"Hmm..."

I muse on this revelation for some time. Daisuke, assuming he's telling the truth, is not actually that bad a guy, as it would seem. Bitter, and prone to grudges, but still not a bad guy over all. He's not so different from myself, actually. There's the obvious similarities, like being male, or going to Yamaku, or playing in the same band; but then there's other, more unique things, like sharing a detachment from our Mothers or our affections for Naomi. Could I have misjudged Daisuke as badly as he misjudged me? Then what I said to Naomi was right. I have brought myself down to Daisuke's level. And now we've both moved up from it.

"So, uh... yeah. Like I said, the last two weeks have really put things in perspective. When I heard you guys were in an accident, I didn't believe it at first. But as more and more people started saying it, I realised it wasn't some kind of sick joke. You guys were actually hurt. I felt terrible about it. I felt terrible because it was all my fault. Because of my actions, Yamato and Reina were hurt. I felt pretty bad about that. I felt worse about having hurt Naomi. But I felt the worst about having hurt you - not cause I'm a homo or nothin', don't get me wrong - but because of how much you mean to Naomi. She nearly had a breakdown, you know. I saw it. From then until now, I haven't left my room."

"But I had to leave. I had to make up for what I caused. And I still don't know how I can do that. I can't fix Reina's broken arm, I can't fix the cuts on Yamato's face, I can't fix Naomi's injuries, and I can't get back the days you lost in the hospital. I can't fix the pain and suffering all your friends and family have gone through. Akara-... Katsuro, I have said and done things that I have come to regret, and caused considerable damage to your life and the lives of others through them. I wish I hadn't done any of it, but I can't change the past. So in place of that, the only thing I can do is ask for forgiveness. Will you forgive me?"

Yep, definitely moved up from it. I would go so far as to say Daisuke has surpassed my previous level. Now it's up to me to extend myself to Daisuke's standard. I extend my hand to him, which he clasps firmly and shakes with a small but strong motion.

"I forgive you. Now let's get the hell outta here, I need some breakfast."

Daisuke and I head back over to the roof access stairs, only to be stopped in our tracks by the appearance of a girl with short, auburn hair on the other side of the door.

"Hello."

I have no idea what to make of this girl from behind the door. Daisuke, on the other hand, seems to know her.

"Rin. Following a cloud again?"
"No. I can't follow a cloud, I'm much to low to do that. Though, my eyes could follow the cloud as far as the horizon..."

This Rin girl trails off midsentence and stares absent-mindedly at the sky above. She remains almost motionless like this for several long seconds, still blocking our exit.

"Um, excuse me, but we need to get through here," I tell her.
"Hmm? Through where?"
"...The door. We need to go through the door."
"Oh. Well good luck with that, I've heard doors are quite solid. If you manage it, I'd very much like to hear about it."
"Huh...?"

Now it's me who's trailing off. What does the state of matter of a door have to do with... oh. Rin has taken my words literally. Clarification time.

"Er, maybe I should have been more clear. We need to go through the doorway, and you're kind of in the middle of it."
"Hmm. So I am. You really should have been more clear."
"Yes, well... will you move?"

Rin cocks her head slightly, as if considering whether or not she's actually going to move out of the way. A second later, she makes up her mind and steps onto the roof, clearing the way for Daisuke and me to pass uninhibited. Well, for me to pass uninhibited at least, as Daisuke is rather hampered by stairs. Technicalities aside, the two of us slowly descend the stairs and make our way downstairs to the cafeteria. Daisuke elects to sit with some people he knows from his class, while I eat alone.

Once I'm filled and refreshed, I consider what I can do for the rest of the day. I haven't exactly got a shortage of time. I'd go see Naomi, if she weren't getting her check up today. Hmm... oh, that's right, I need a new phone. I don't think it will be too likely the town at the bottom of the hill Yamaku is located on would have much in the way of phone stores... but the city definitely would. I walk out of the cafeteria and out to the bus stop outside the school grounds. The next bus is in thirty minutes. Damn, I must have just missed the last one. Ah well, guess I'll just wait here for the next bus to arrive.

On to the next part: Day Sixty Six (Afternoon)

=================

As you might have noticed, at the beginning of this chapter is the heading "Day Sixty Six - Morning". While writing this chapter, I had two key plot points I wanted to address. By the time I had finished writing one of them (that is, the one you've read above), I had already exceeded three thousand words. I had not anticipated needing so many words to write out what was only five words in my plan. As a result, I have decided to split this chapter into two parts; this part, Morning, and the next part to come, Afternoon.

This also means the last chapter will be pushed back - all the better for you guys, but it means more work for me. I have a week off Uni starting Thursday though, so hopefully I can get pretty much all of it done in that time. In the mean time, I have one more picture for you guys, but this one shows off two characters - Yamato and Reina. And it has a lot of black. Which, for the record, was a pain in the ass, because it madde it so hard to differentiate between articles of clothing and hair and what not. Anyway, enjoy.
Cheers, BlackWaltz.

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Last edited by BlackWaltzTheThird on Sun Apr 08, 2012 1:42 am, edited 1 time in total.
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The O.H.L.
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Re: Greater Than The Sum - Days 0 - 66pt1 now up: 3/4/12

Post by The O.H.L. » Tue Apr 03, 2012 9:07 am

Ah, for once my insomnia paid off! I get to see the latest chapter not long after it was posted. Hooray for me (and socks).

On a side note, I kind of connect in a way with Daisuke because recently I had a falling out with a close friend of mine, and I realized I was the one being the ass, and I was doing so for about a year. Weird how that sort of thing works out huh?
Guess who's back, back, back, back again.
Not that I ever made any great contributions, but oh well, too bad.

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Re: Greater Than The Sum - Days 0 - 66pt1 now up: 3/4/12

Post by Mahorfeus » Tue Apr 03, 2012 7:04 pm

Now I almost feel bad for my previous Daisuke comment...
"A very small degree of hope is sufficient to cause the birth of love." -Stendhal
The verdict is (finally) in:
Hanako > Rin > Emi > Lilly = Shizune

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Re: Greater Than The Sum - Days 0 - 66pt1 now up: 3/4/12

Post by BlackWaltzTheThird » Tue Apr 03, 2012 11:40 pm

Mahorfeus wrote:Now I almost feel bad for my previous Daisuke comment...
Hehe, it just goes to show you shouldn't judge a book by its cover (or a man by his MSPaint portrait).
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Re: Greater Than The Sum - Days 0 - 66pt1 now up: 3/4/12

Post by stateside » Thu Apr 05, 2012 10:27 am

that was excellent and I read it in the morning while I was waiting for my Neurologist appointment.

I

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Re: Greater Than The Sum - Days 0 - 66pt1 now up: 3/4/12

Post by Beoran » Fri Apr 06, 2012 4:50 pm

BlackWaltz, first of all, great fanfic, I enjoy it. Plenty of original characters, and they "rock"!

Now, please forgive me as I pester you with my Japanese Culture quibble: Did the gun incident take place outside of Japan? Inside of Japan guns are exceedingly rare and hard to get, even for criminals, unless they're in the Yakuza (Japanese "maffia"), and those don't rob houses. Normally they'll use knives, a lot. It doesn't change the story though, just a few details, I guess.

Another thing you got (accidentally?) right though, is that the Japanese are terribly negligent wearing their seat belts, especially in the back of the car. The hero and his girlfriend wouldn't be wearing them. So that makes the damage from the crash believable enough. I've been in a tailspin and a car crash myself with others and we always got out unharmed thanks to the seat belts. In Japan, this would not have been so...
Kind Regards, B.
Feeling like your heart is broken? Need to get it off your chest? Tell your story here.
Take a look at Eruta my jRPG under development. New web site since december 2012.
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All great love is above pity: for it wants - to create what is loved! -- F. Nietzsche - Thus Spoke Zarathustra.

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Re: Greater Than The Sum - Days 0 - 66pt1 now up: 3/4/12

Post by BlackWaltzTheThird » Fri Apr 06, 2012 11:55 pm

Beoran wrote:BlackWaltz, first of all, great fanfic, I enjoy it. Plenty of original characters, and they "rock"!

Now, please forgive me as I pester you with my Japanese Culture quibble: Did the gun incident take place outside of Japan? Inside of Japan guns are exceedingly rare and hard to get, even for criminals, unless they're in the Yakuza (Japanese "maffia"), and those don't rob houses. Normally they'll use knives, a lot. It doesn't change the story though, just a few details, I guess.

Another thing you got (accidentally?) right though, is that the Japanese are terribly negligent wearing their seat belts, especially in the back of the car. The hero and his girlfriend wouldn't be wearing them. So that makes the damage from the crash believable enough. I've been in a tailspin and a car crash myself with others and we always got out unharmed thanks to the seat belts. In Japan, this would not have been so...
Thank you for the kind words; as a writer, appreciation is a big motivator - especially when working with no money involved. As for your 'pestering', I would very much like to say that I left the location of the house incident ambiguous on purpose, but it was little more than an oversight on my part. Having had that now pointed out to me, I think it's for the better that the location remains that way.

With the seatbelts thing, I'm not sure I could claim that as being right, even accidentally, as again I made no mention of their use and thus it is ambiguous. That being said, while wearing the seatbelts would more than likely save the characters lives, it is entirely plausible for them to survive (relatively) unharmed without them; many stranger things have happened in the realm of luck. All I ask is that you suspend your disbelief for a brief time. :)
Cheers, BlackWaltz.
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Re: Greater Than The Sum - Days 0 - 66pt1 now up: 3/4/12

Post by Beoran » Sat Apr 07, 2012 1:25 am

Well, I'm glad you could appreciate my comment. Some others here don't like my incessant Japanese culture remarks, so I'll be moving them to private messages from now.

As for the car crash, I didn't feel disbelief at all, actually. I think lethal car crashes are a bit overused as a plot device, for every lethal car crash there are 10 where there is lesser damage. Not wearing seat belts usually means the damage will be worse, but it need not be lethal either.
Kind Regards, B.
Feeling like your heart is broken? Need to get it off your chest? Tell your story here.
Take a look at Eruta my jRPG under development. New web site since december 2012.
Play Ature, my free and open source indie Atari 2600 action adventure game.
All great love is above pity: for it wants - to create what is loved! -- F. Nietzsche - Thus Spoke Zarathustra.

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Re: Greater Than The Sum - Days 0 - 66pt1 now up: 3/4/12

Post by BlackWaltzTheThird » Sun Apr 08, 2012 1:41 am

Day Sixty Six - Afternoon

At last, the bus to the city arrives. I take a seat on the vehicle, and it departs Yamaku for the city. It's not an overly long journey this time. I attribute this apparant inconsistancy of duration to the nature of my last trip to the city; the nervousness about going on my first date with Naomi, as well as my desperation to avoid awkward silences (of which, in hindsight, my efforts had the opposite effect), made each second seem longer than it was. Now that I think of it, that discrepancy in my perception of time seems to have happened a lot since I started at Yamaku. Maybe I should start chugging coffee.

I watch the bus tear away from the kerb at the main city stop. As it disappears, I start searching for anything resembling a store that sells phones. From here, none immediately stand out. I walk towards the nearest block of shops, and take in the signage, name, and window products of each as I circle the block. Nope, nope, nope. There's that ice cream store Naomi and I went to. Nope, nope, nope-ity nope. I lose count of the stores I've looked at faster than I would have liked. Surely it can't be this hard to find a shop that stocks mobile phones in the city? I repeat the process for adjacent blocks in turn, none yeilding a mobile phone store.

Having covered several blocks of shops, the sun now looses its life-supporting and yet deadly rays from its peak angle in the sky. My stomach grumbles for nourishment and my mouth begs for hydration. Unable to ignore my body's demands any longer, I stop looking in order to grab some lunch. A little café nearby triggers recognition in my mind; if I remember correctly, this is the café Naomi and I went to last time I was here. Shortly after I... almost got hit by a car. I can't help but to draw irrationally specific connections between that event and the accident after the concert. Both times were days where the relationship between Naomi and I escalated, and both times I had a near death experience involving a car. I resolve to be mindful of cars when the day comes for Naomi and I to... 'escalate' once again.

Putting aside both the ominous and arousing thoughts, I take a seat at the café and order a milkshake. French vanilla, aww yeah. As I sip the drink, I look around the immediate vicinity for any sign of a phone shop. Across the street, I notice a store adorned with the distinctive logo found on iPods across the globe. They have stores just for those now? I quickly finish my milkshake and head over to the store, where dozens of customers excitedly move about the floor. The counter staff are clearly being overworked, and more and more people are buying products by the minute.

I've never seen people so excited for music players. Or computers. On closer inspection, though, it seems that these customers are not buying either of these things. As it would appear, this store is selling phones in the Apple brand. What an unusual move, to have a music player and computer developing company move into selling phones. Wait, phones? My eyes do not decieve me, the text on the packaging does indeed read iPhone. At last! I rush over to where the stream of customers seem to be obtaining their products, and swipe a box from the shelf. There's very few left; my timing was impeccable. I wait in line for quite some time before I finally manage to reach the counter. Ouch, that much for a phone? So be it. I complete the transaction and leave the store as the proud owner of a brand new iPhone.

I spend several minutes fiddling with the device to get it working, and several more to get it set up. This fandangled technology is really high tech. Eventually I finish preparing the phone for use, and enter in a single number to the contacts; the only one I've ever memorized. Having done that, I begin composing the message I want to send in haste.

'Naomi,
I went and bought a new phone; could you please do me a favour and forward my number to everyone? Thanks a bunch. I hope you're well, and that your check up isn't too stressful. I miss you. See you soon.
Katsuro.'

And with a tap on the screen my message is away. How far technology has come in the last few years. Shortly after my message is sent, the reply arrives.

'Katsuro,
Will do. I'm almost done, when I get back I'll come see you. I miss you too.
Naomi xx'

Guess that means I better get back to Yamaku. I navigate my way back to the bus stop at which I arrived. Luckily, the bus to the school arrives not a minute later. I get on board and take a seat near the front. I spend the trip playing with my purchase. It has a bunch of really neat features. I don't even know what all of them do, but they're pretty neat nonetheless. Because of this, I almost don't notice when we arrive back at Yamaku's bus stop. Just as the bus is about to depart again, however, I do notice, and hurriedly jump off the vehicle. The driver shoots me a rude look as he pulls away. What a jerk.

I stroll through the greenery of the grounds and through to the dorm buildings, with my final destination being my room. Once inside, I power up my laptop for the first time in over two weeks. I'm reminded again why I hate the school-provided internet service so much. In spite of the infuriatingly slow connection, I manage to compose and send an email to Dad with my new number and a little update on the state of my relationships with Daisuke and Naomi. With all my immediate plans completed for the time being, I while away some time on my old forums and whatnot as I wait for Naomi to return.

Naomi's arrival is both spontaneous and loud. She bursts into my room without so much as a knock and announces her arrival with a flying hug-and-kiss that could nearly be considered a crash tackle. I'm thankful I wasn't doing anything uncouth at that time, as I would have been sprung bad. When Naomi breaks the kiss, I find her smiling with unbridled happiness.

"Welcome back," I sputter out.
"Thanks! Hey, are you doing anything right now?"
"No, not real- "
"Great! Come with me!"

Naomi forcefully takes my hand and lifts me out of my chair and out of my room without so much as a second thought. I have to flail my arm behind me just to close my door on the way out. As Naomi leads me through the building, I notice that in her other hand she holds a large white envelope. I don't have time to process the significance of it though, as Naomi and I burst through the doors of the dorm building and traverse the school grounds at a considerable pace. Our speed garners some looks from a few of the other students in the grounds; some curious, and some disapproving. Like the envelope, I don't have a lot of time to consider the looks as Naomi leads me through another door, into a very familiar building.

I manage to make the connection between the envelope and our location just as we arrive at the marked door. The lack of a name plate has always intrigued me; the one time I asked about it, the answer I was given was that it kept getting stolen, so its owner simply stopped replacing it. Naomi opens the door full force without knocking, just as she did mine less than a minute ago. She leads me inside the doorway as she opens it, and we nearly collide with a boy in our year. If I recall, he's in Misha and Shizune's class... what was his name? Haseo? Hosai? Haiso? I dunno. I apologise for the intrusion, and give him a matching look. He simply shrugs, and walks out the door, closing it behind him.

When I turn back to the room before me, I see Naomi on the far side of the room, withdrawing another set of those dark films from the big envelope and placing them onto the lightbox mounted on the wall. Still sitting in his desk chair, completely and utterly stunned at the sudden appearance of two of his patients, is the nurse.

"What... what are you two doing here?" He asks.
Naomi's reply is quick and monosyllabic. "Look!"

Nurse and I approach the light box, standing either side of Naomi. On the light box, she has placed two film prints from some kind of scanning device; possibly an MRI or similar. Across the two prints are a series of scans of Naomi's skull. On each, in the same place, a certain part of Naomi's skull has been circled. As best as I can tell, there is no obvious differences between the pictures. On Naomi's other side, the nurse is staring hard at the pictures - or, at least, I assume he is, through that perpetual squint of his. I notice each picture has a date printed below it. It seems the images stretch back almost six months. I look to Naomi for clarification.

"They're my scans from the last twenty four weeks. Look in the circles, no change between them! Do you know what this means?"
The nurse sighs before he responds. "Naomi, what did I tell you about getting your hopes up too often?"
"No, it's not just that! When I went for my check up today, the specialist said that at this point, there's nothing more for her to do! There's been nothing in my brain for the last six months, and there's no sign of anything anywhere else, either! I'm officially cancer-free!"

The enormous smile on Naomi's face now spreads to mine. Cancer-free. If 'cancer' is the most soul-destroying word in the world, then 'cancer-free' is its opposite. I don't know what word is the opposite of soul-destroying, but this moment right now is it incarnate. I wrap my arms around Naomi and hug her tightly; I think kissing her in front of the nurse might be a bit inappropriate. Unfortunately, Naomi doesn't think so, and initiates a very tongue-y kiss. Nurse coughs and turns away. When we finally let go of each other, nurse humbly asks Naomi to contain her excitement, just a bit, and invites us to celebrate elsewhere, as he has another appointment soon. Naomi hastily stows her film prints in their envelope and bounds out the door. I make to follow her, but nurse stops me.

"I knew you'd end up together."
"Ah, shut up."
"Hehehe, make sure you use protection."
I blush profusely and stammer out my response. "Wh-what make you th-think that we're..."
"Where do you think she got the condom? My job is to look after the health of you students, after all. Now get going, before you miss your shot!"

I very quickly walk out of the nurse's office and shut the door in my wake. Damn nurse crossed that weirdness line again. Naomi and I interlock our fingers and she leads me towards the exit of the medical building. I can't help but feel around in my pocket with my other hand to check if the object placed in there four days ago is still there. Thankfully, it is. Just in case. Not that I expect any need for it today. I think.

As we pass a window, a great thunderclap echoes across the school, and rain absolutely buckets down. So suddenly has it come on, that several students are sprinting for the shelter of the nearest building, using their hands in a desperate attempt to block the droplets from hitting them. My feelings about this sudden downpour can only be summarised by referring to my reaction to that Kenji kid's ramblings; 'what', with a fullstop in place of a question mark. Possibly also a very resounding 'the fuck'. The look on Naomi's face shows that she feels much the same about the foul turn in the weather. Strangely, though, her mouth curls up into that cheeky grin, and she turns to me.

"Race you to the dorms. Wettest person loses."
"You... want to go out in that?"
"What, are you too chicken?"
"No, but- "
"Then how about it? Ready? Go!"

Before I can object, Naomi hurls open the door leading out from the building and begins sprinting through the monsoon towards the dorms. Taking one hesitant breath, I weigh up the challenge. It's about fifty metres to the dorms. Give or take ten metres. There's a slight bit of shelter on the way in the form of a large tree. I'm wearing two shirts, so at least part of one will be dry. Screw it, I can do this. I reluctantly charge into the rain after Naomi, running as fast as my legs will carry me. By the time I'm flying up the stairs that lead up to the elevated entrance of the dorms two at a time, Naomi has charged in the door to the girls' dorms. Not two seconds later, I join her in the rain-free lobby.

We're both soaked to the skin. Although Naomi is wearing less clothing than me - at least, in terms of the amount of skin it covers - it's quite likely she is warmer and drier than I am. I look at my soaked shirts. And shorts. And shoes and socks. Damn, I'm cold. My lightweight - no, scratch that - my featherweight frame does nothing to contain whatever remaining body heat I possess. I start to shiver as the warmth from my sprint begins to ebb away. Naomi also seems cold, but it's not shivering that gives the fact away. Naomi notices my shivering and gives a little chuckle.

"You look a bit wet there."
"Right, just a bit. No big deal."
"I think we could both do with some warming up. You want some leftover take out?"
"If it's no trouble... hell yes."
"Hehe don't worry, I have no shortage of leftovers. Let's go."

I follow Naomi to her room. I know where it is, of course, room two-one-four, but I'm pretty sure it's polite to let her lead me like this. Besides, I prefer to have someone else take the lead. Once we're inside, Naomi immediately heats up a container of some rice dish. It's not bad, but even steaming hot as it is, and even with Naomi sitting right next to me, it does little to alleviate the cold brought on by my wet clothes and hair. I can feel from her shivering that the same can be said about Naomi.

"Naomi, I don't think that worked."
"No shit. I'm gonna grab some towels so we can dry off."

Naomi quickly steps behind me into the shared bathroom and returns with two towels. She throws one to me, with which I begin furiously drying my hair. I hate wet hair. So cold. And wet. Once I feel that my hair is satisfactorily dry, I turn to hand the towel back to Naomi. What I see is not Naomi drying her hair as I was, but Naomi drying off her body; singlet, vest, shorts and wig cast aside. I'd almost forgotten about her wig. But never will I forget the image of Naomi standing before me in her underwear, damp white bra and ivory knickers doing very little to cover her modesty. All of a sudden, part of me becomes slightly warmer.

"Naomi! What are you- "
"What? I'll freeze if I leave wet clothes on. Same goes for you, take those off before you go all hypothermic."

For the second time in the last twenty minutes, I find myself blushing profusely. I put all my effort into looking at Naomi's face, for to the best of my knowledge, staring at a girl - even one standing before me in her underwear - is generally not a good thing to do. When it becomes clear that I'm not doing as I've been told, Naomi steps over to me and gives the collar of my outer, black shirt a tug; though, I should say I'm not actively disobeying, I'm just too damn stunned to react right now. My mind unfreezes after the third tug, and I stand up. Naomi slips my black shirt off over my shoulders, the buttons having been left undone when I put it on this morning. My white shirt follows, though due to its button-less nature it has to go up and over my head.

Naomi makes to do the same with my shorts, but in my hesitation I block her hand with mine. We're already three quarters of the way to standing naked together, but still some part of my being holds me back. That, and I'm fairly embarrassed about... my current state, to put it nicely. Sensing my apprehension, Naomi abandons her quest to remove my shorts and instead starts drying my body and arms with the towel. When she dries my back, she does so by reaching around me in a sort of hug, and I can feel her breasts squishing up against my chest. They're... very soft. Dammit. Now that part of me is warmer still. If this keeps up much longer...

Without warning, Naomi drops the towel and presses her lips into mine. It takes me a second to realise, but when I do I return the gesture. Given how close Naomi is, it's not surprising that I have to step back as she steps forward. Then a second, then a third time. On the fourth step, I collide with the edge of her bed and fall onto my back; my head narrowly missing a collision with the wall. While I'm off my feet, Naomi takes the chance to whip my shorts off, leaving me with only my underwear on; which, frankly, does not hide the bulge inside them very well. Thankfully, Naomi doesn't seem to notice as she climbs onto the bed and takes a seat beside me. Or, at least, she makes no mention of it if she does.

Naomi lifts her blanket out from under us and throws it over our shivering forms, snuggling into my neck and wrapping her right arm across my chest with her hand on my left shoulder. She hooks her foot around mine, partially entwining our legs. My thoughts are simultaneously racing and at a standstill. I'm sitting near naked with Naomi in her bed, in the closest contact I've ever had with her. From this close, I think I can smell her. Strawberries... or is my mind playing tricks on me? The sensation of Naomi placing tiny kisses on my neck draws my attention, and I turn my head to face her. She lifts her head to meet mine, and moves her hand from my shoulder to my face as we meet in another tongue-filled kiss. I'm not sure if I like those. They're quite... strange.

Still maintaining the kiss, Naomi falls sideways, taking me with her, so that she lies mostly on her back and I on my side on top of her. I position the hand I'm not propping myself up with so that I caress Naomi's side. She seems to enjoy this, but nevertheless she takes my hand and repositions it. The realisation stabs though my mind like a dagger. This is Naomi's right breast. Ohmygodohmygodohmygod. Concentrate, damn you! Hesitantly, I begin to caress Naomi's breast. I haven't the slightest idea if I'm doing it properly, so I take the lack of any correction or opposition to mean that I am. Once again, the word soft springs to mind to describe the feeling of Naomi's body. And wobbly. And... hard? I prod the hard lump. Naomi breaks the kiss and gasps lightly. Right; that must have been her nipple.

Naomi sits up slightly, and reaches behind her back. She fumbles to unhook her bra, but positioned like she is, it's proving difficult. I lean over her to help out, and together we manage to release the undergarment, which Naomi casts aside. Unimpeded by the shaped fabric which covered them before, Naomi's breasts sit before me in full view. I've seen no shortage of the things on the internet - er, I mean, in documentaries - but it doesn't do justice to how they look up close and in person. Remembering something I saw in one of those 'documentaries', I plant a light kiss on Naomi's left nipple. Naomi lets out a tiny giggle, and I can't help but think that I've done something wrong. I look to Naomi for directions, and she simply nods. Perhaps not. I kiss her body again, and this time another gasp is the response.

I continue doing this, doing nearly the same to Naomi's other breast with my hand. Naomi's eyes flutter on the brink of open and closed, and she reaches her own hand past mine and begins to move it around further down her body. The strain on my underwear is getting quite uncomfortable. I lean forward again to kiss Naomi on the lips, and a part of me that isn't my finger prods her in the hip. Naomi giggles and opens her eyes, then feels for the offending object with her other hand. It's not hard for her to find, and when she does, she smiles a smile I haven't seen before. It's not her usual wide smile, nor the cheeky, mischevious grin; it's full of lust. The same can be said of her eyes; now I understand the meaning of the term 'sex eyes'.

Naomi quietly whispers to me. "It's the moment."
"Hold on, not just yet."

Naomi's pained expression burns in my mind as I leap off the bed. I step over to the mostly-closed curtains, and shut them all the way. In doing so, I quickly check for any cars. Even though we're on the second floor, out of reach of normal vehicles, I figure it's better to be safe than sorry. I then head back towards the bed, stopping by my soaked shorts on the way to extract the square foil package I obtained four days prior. Spying the sealed contraceptive, Naomi's expression shifts to one of realisation, then back to lust.

I climb back onto the bed, sitting beside Naomi. She sits up slightly, and begins to tug on the band of my underwear. Whatever inhibitions I still have are ignored as I slide the last of my clothing off, exposing myself in my entirety to Naomi. The freedom it provides is a huge relief. Naomi takes the foil package from my hand and tears it open, withdrawing the latex device from inside. She pinches the end, and unrolls the sheath over me. The feeling of Naomi's hand sliding over my shaft is indescribable. In principle, it's no different to doing the same thing myself. But in practice... I don't know how to describe it. It's just... better.

I slide myself back under the covers, while Naomi bends her legs to remove her panties. They promptly end up on the other side of the room, and Naomi lowers the leg nearest to me as to allow me to position myself over her. I do so, tentatively hovering a few inches above her body, supporting myself with my outstretched arms. Satisfied that I'm in place, Naomi raises her leg again, effectively trapping me between her legs. I quickly lean towards Naomi for a kiss, then she reaches down and takes me in her hand, guiding me towards her. I sharply draw breath as we make contact for the first time. I'm not quite positioned properly, so I slip away. I can't tell if the slipperiness is from the lubricant on the condom, or from Naomi.

On the second attempt, Naomi does manage to position me properly. I know it as soon as I slide into place ever so slightly. The sensation is surprisingly similar to the instant when you finally manage to position the plastic shape in exactly the right orientation so that it can fall through the hole in the box. With an encouraging nod from Naomi, I gently push my hips towards her. Little by little, we become closer than ever before. A short way in, I meet some resistance. I ease up, so as not to hurt Naomi, but the letting up spurs her to wrap her legs around my backside and pull me into her.

I fully expect to feel some kind of tearing, or hear Naomi gasp in pain, or notice blood spilling from the depths of her body, as they do in those 'documentaries', but none of those things occur. I'm left face to face with a contented-looking Naomi, joined at the waist. What I'm feeling right now, both physically and emotionally... its indescribability makes the feeling when Naomi applied the condom seem infinitely more communicable. Words flit about my consciousness, only partially describing the feeling. Hot, soft, compressed, cosy, right, perfect... none of them are apt enough. Naomi's purring shakes me from my attempts to encapsulate the moment and moves me to start engaging in our first act of sex.

I raise my hips, sliding out of Naomi's body. Even though that movement in itself feels incredible, every part of me screams to stop, to do the reverse. My body demands that I sink back into Naomi, and I'm powerless to resist the urge. When I can't sink any further, the pleasure begins to subside, and the only way to get more is to withdraw and insert once again. Soon the number of repetitions begins to increase, though far from steadily. Even though both of us are musicians, neither of us can find a common rhythm as we move together. I focus my mind on one song, let the metronome in my mind tick to the tempo, and time my forward and reverse thrusts to alternating beats.

As I maintain my rhythm, Naomi is quickly able to match the tempo. Finally, the two of us move in perfect unison, each movement we make melting into the next. Then, as quickly as it started, the unison is lost, and we're back to flailing around in different meters. Several times is this process repeated; find harmony, lose harmony, find harmony, lose harmony, all the while being lost in the pleasure of the act. The sweat and heat begins to build up the longer we fight to get in time, and with it the carnal desire for more. The performance soon devolves into a desperate attempt to extract as much pleasure for ourselves as possible, with no heed paid to what the other is doing or how fast they're doing it.

After a measure that could be a minute or a lifetime, some metaphysical part of me clicks into place, and the excitement crescendos towards an explosive grand finale. With one, final, forward thrust, my mind is filled with an ironic white emptiness; all my senses registering the exact same blinding, deafening, numbing absolution. I lose all control of my body, completely unable to move, and yet a faraway part of me registers Naomi still moving underneath me, pulling me closer in a selfish attempt to steal that feeling for herself. I only notice Naomi's hand pressing and rubbing between us on a semi-conscious level.

At last, as my sight and other senses return, I realise the time. Oh, is that all? It seemed like a lot longer than that to me... Beneath me, Naomi is still bucking and rubbing, trying desperately to reach the apex as I did. She continues this way for several minutes, almost as long as the time we were both involved. It pains me to see her give up. I know I should have done something to help, but for the life of me I cannot fathom what that might be. Short of being ready for round two by some sort of miracle in such a brief time, there's nothing I can do that Naomi wasn't already doing herself. I resign myself to cuddling up to Naomi and enjoying her presence.

I lay on my side, facing Naomi. Most of the heat from before is gone, only to be replaced by the re-emergence of the summer sun outside. A light dampness exists, spread between our skin and the sheets; all that remains of our combined sweating. It smells a little, though it's only part of a much larger smell. I'm not sure how to describe what it is, except to say that it is, without a doubt, the smell of sex. I hold Naomi's hand and smile; a gesture returned in kind. We've remained like this for nearly an hour, since we cleaned up after ourselves. I think we could remain like this for hours more; in spite of the sky-high physical pleasure from earlier, something about just laying here like this after it is just very... fulfilling, spiritually.

It's far from night, but the sheer peace of our existences right now causes me to feel impossibly tired. It's not just physical exhaustion either; I feel drained mentally and emotionally as well. Perhaps drained is the wrong word, but I'm in no state at this moment to think of a better one. All I can do I lay here and smile at Naomi. I've said it many times before, but she really is beautiful. Even now, without her distinctive fiery hair. I can't comprehend how she can hate her real hair; having seen it on two occasions now, I think it's actually quite nice looking. It is a bit longer than last time, but still very short. I almost tell her this, but a ringing from nearby interrupts me. Goddamnit.

Naomi reaches over me to obtain her phone from the desk next to her bed. As she does so, I get a face full of boobies. Win. Naomi lays back down, reading out the message sent to her.

"It's Daisuke. Do you want to meet up for one last jam sesh tonight?"

On to the next part: Day Sixty Six (Night)

=================

This chapter was very hard for me to write. The biggest reason for this is the entire second half of the chapter - I have literally no personal experience with sex. I tried very hard to imagine what it would be like (something I usually struggle to do), and passed the scene by a very close friend of mine who is, well, more experienced than me, for a fact-checking of sorts. Hopefully it's turned out alright.

Moving on, yes, I know, I've gone and made this into a three parter. It's just that the next plot point worked better if it followed on from the current day rather than on the next day, as I originally planned. So expect to see Day Sixty Six - Night in the next few days. I may or may not read The Hunger Games books first. Anyway; you'll also see below two more character portraits. These ones are Katsuro's Father, Ken Akarada, and his homeroom and English teacher, Ai Sakura. Feel free to let me know what you think of either the chapter or the art (or both, if you want). This is most definitely the chapter I want to be criticised on, particularly by those with 'experience'. Thanks for reading!
Cheers, BlackWaltz.

Ken.png
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Sakura.png
Sakura.png (24.71 KiB) Viewed 2858 times
Last edited by BlackWaltzTheThird on Wed Apr 11, 2012 4:26 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Mahorfeus
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Re: Greater Than The Sum - Days 0 - 66pt2 now up: 8/4/12

Post by Mahorfeus » Sun Apr 08, 2012 2:14 am

BlackWaltzTheThird wrote:I tried very hard to imagine what it would be like (something I usually struggle to do), and passed the scene by a very close friend of mine who is, well, more experienced than me, for a fact-checking of sorts.
It's about as close as you can get to realistic for a fanfic. You played out Katsuro's inexperience rather well, along with the slightly awkward sex that could be expected of a virgin.

But more importantly...
BlackWaltzTheThird wrote:French vanilla, aww yeah.
This line made my day for some reason.
"A very small degree of hope is sufficient to cause the birth of love." -Stendhal
The verdict is (finally) in:
Hanako > Rin > Emi > Lilly = Shizune

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Mirage_GSM
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Re: Greater Than The Sum - Days 0 - 66pt2 now up: 8/4/12

Post by Mirage_GSM » Sun Apr 08, 2012 3:03 am

Well, let's just say you shouldn't be too disappointed if your first time doesn't go as (almost) flawlessly as in your fic. From my experience it doesn't especially if both partners are first-timers.
Then again, it wouldn't be fun to write a fic about something like that...
Emi > Misha > Hanako > Lilly > Rin > Shizune

My collected KS-Fan Fictions: Mirage's Myths
griffon8 wrote:Kosher, just because sex is your answer to everything doesn't mean that sex is the answer to everything.
Sore wa himitsu desu.

Gilrond
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Re: Greater Than The Sum - Days 0 - 66pt2 now up: 8/4/12

Post by Gilrond » Sun Apr 08, 2012 5:44 am

Mirage_GSM wrote:Well, let's just say you shouldn't be too disappointed if your first time doesn't go as (almost) flawlessly as in your fic. From my experience it doesn't especially if both partners are first-timers.
^This :) Well written though. I've really come to enjoy this story

xaolindragon
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Re: Greater Than The Sum - Days 0 - 66pt2 now up: 8/4/12

Post by xaolindragon » Sun Apr 08, 2012 10:24 am

Once again, a solid chapter. As for the whole sex scene, I think you pretty darn well. considering your circumstance. I will be saving this in its entirety. :)

Beoran
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Re: Greater Than The Sum - Days 0 - 66pt2 now up: 8/4/12

Post by Beoran » Sun Apr 08, 2012 8:33 pm

The sex scene was a little "idealized", I guess. But I remember that, when I was a virgin, I'd imagine sex to be like that as well. I found Sex Tips For Geeks to be useful. Also, sometimes it felt a bit wordy. But it was exciting to read, so it's certainly written well enough. Another fun episode!
Kind Regards, B.
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Daitengu
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Re: Greater Than The Sum - Days 0 - 66pt2 now up: 8/4/12

Post by Daitengu » Sun Apr 08, 2012 10:44 pm

Beoran wrote:The sex scene was a little "idealized", I guess. But I remember that, when I was a virgin, I'd imagine sex to be like that as well. I found Sex Tips For Geeks to be useful. Also, sometimes it felt a bit wordy. But it was exciting to read, so it's certainly written well enough. Another fun episode!
That link is funny and informative in a Discovery channel kind of way. Always wondered why I kept getting hit on. It was my rebel elitist attitude, and the pony tail that makes some girls envious lol

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