Chapter 2: The Shattered Glass
"It's been so long..." he whispered. Slowly, he neared her face. Yes, before Athrun, before Kira...it was HIM. Lacus' heart skipped a beat as she felt his lips on her own.
Her reflexes pushed him away, heeding the plead of her mind. The look on his face was dreadful- for sure he was hurt so badly. Realizing her mistake, she moved back, touching her lips. His taste was still there- no doubt about it.
"Lacus, what's...what's wrong?" Kenn stammered. She softened in his voice and a strong feeling of wanting to hold him lightened. She shook her head, and the memories returned...like a dream. Only it was real...and they did happen!
Startled, as hands touched her shoulder, she looked up and met his gaze. Still, they looked strong and determined and that mask of loneliness was still there too. The serious look on his face she adored so much had turned much better. He was a little taller, muscular- just by his grip on her shoulders- and his eyes looked more sincere than ever. He pulled her into an embrace...and she melted there.
"So you're going to marry Athrun Zala?!" he asked. Kenn snorted as he saw Lacus nod. Yup, this was part of a career busting recipe thing- and he hated every minute of looking at her without having enough courage to tell her what he truly feels inside.
"Well then, good luck with that!" he shrugged his shoulders and left her behind...but he was waking as he did this- expecting her to run after him and beg him to stay.
"Were not kids anymore Kenn..."
Slowly, he turned around and looked at her. She's changed throughout the years of staying inside that stupid mansion after her mother's death. Her smile was different, almost heavy and deceiving. Since when did she learn to smile only for others and not for herself? Since when did she start putting on that mask to fool the world? To hide the hurt? To please others against her own will?
"Humph...since when did you wear that hypocritical facial expression?!"
She flinched, hearing it from him hurt a lot like hell. They've been friends through thick and thin. Lacus could still remember the first time they met at her grandfather's mansion and he introduced himself as a family friend of the Clyne's. Since then, he's spending his summer at their residence ...to play with her...or rather protect her from her cousins' unfair treatment. Yet, she considered those as child's play or rather, a part of being a child. The big question in her mind was why did it have to be the Zala's? Why didn't it have to be Kenn?
Seeing her stagnant reaction, he continued to walk away again...but stopped as Lacus embraced him from behind. Her hands held him closely, and she buried her face on his back.
"I'm sorry, Kenn"
His arms pulled her closer; he could sense the resistance in her actions. Soon, she was arm's distance away from him, as if he were a nightmare that had just came true before her very eyes.
The view from the corner of her shocked her to the bones! NO, don't let it be. She wished he weren't there, wished his existence was forgotten for a while after she solved her problems with Kenn...but there he was- stagnant confused and... angry?
No please...this can't get any worse. Lacus glanced to her side- NO- and saw Kira not too far from where she was standing. Had he seen it? Had he seen the part where he kissed her? More importantly, HAD HE SEEN THE PART WHERE SHE, FOR A WHILE, ENJOYED KENN'S EMBRACE?
"Who are you?" Kenn asked while facing Kira. Their eyes met almost in a flare- like they were fighting in their subconscious minds, away from the innocent eyes of Lacus. Slowly, Kira's hands formed into fists; his eyes beginning to glisten as they went to rest on a very confused Lacus. Then Kira looked at the sand, cursing its ignorance.
"What are you sorry for?" he asked her angrily. A sigh escaped her lips but she didn't let him go. He wished it wasn't a sigh that came out of it but a confession instead. He wanted to hear from her what she really felt about him. Young as they are, they are not ignorant about love and they deserve to know the meaning of it too. However, could an arranged marriage with someone she doesn't even know help her learn this?
"After this...we may never meet again." His words sounded so depressing. Her night in shinning armor, her protector, her best friend and someone she had grown to love will be gone forever. So she did love him... like the way he does her.
She withdrew herself from his body, his aura disappearing. She could not take it anymore. He was few of the people she could reveal her sadness to...and these people are very rare- very rare indeed.
Lacus walked pass him in a hurry but she was drawn back by him...with tears in his eyes. He pulled her closer for the last time- closer to him than ever before. Lips opening he was about to say "I love you" but instead kept it to himself. Love wasn't the answer- not right now.
"Just, take care of yourself okay?"
A new feeling coursed through Kira's veins...the picture in his mind can't stop repeating itself... her lips kissed by...
Swiftly he turned around and walked away...but she grabbed his hands and called his name; her voice resounding in his ear. Another picture appeared in his mind; last night as she was in his arms. It disappeared, replaced by the picture of her lips being kissed by...
Kira tried to contain himself of the new feeling. It was so foreign that he hated it so much. Lacus' grip tightened on his, forgetting the other presence behind her that seemed overwhelmed at her reaction towards the brunette.
She called out his name once again.
Bravely, he closed his eyes and opened his lips to speak. The anger dispersed and he felt weak- so weak. The new feeling was overwhelming him that he lost enough strength to even talk. However, anything was better than being stuck in this situation with nothing to say.
What on earth was she doing? Lacus was holding Kira's hand; hadn't she thought about what Kenn would feel? Why did he even come back in the first place? Kira turned around to face the both of them and was about to speak when a group of children ran towards them and started to pull Lacus to them, "Lacus, c'mon!"
"Hey, what's going on here?"
Kira turned around and saw Carl, the eldest orphan. He was wearing that usual grim on his face. For a thirteen-year-old boy, he was pretty mature for his age. "Kira, who is that guy?" Carl asked again. Kenn stepped forward and defended himself, "I just need to borrow Lacus for a while."
The kids forcibly pulled Lacus towards them, "NO! You can't borrow her. She belongs to us...and Kira!"
The three of them were stunned, especially Kira and Kenn. The kids continued to pull Lacus for them to play somewhere when Kira spoke, "Now kids, Lacus has a visitor. We need to give them time."
Kira gathered the noisy children and they walked away from the two. "Kira, if I'm not mistaken, he kissed her right?" Carl questioned again. Kira didn't want to answer that; he saw it but didn't want to remember it anymore! He moved faster, and then the children started to chase him, thinking he was in for a game of tag. From afar, they disappeared inside the mansion.
"Who was that guy, Lacus?" Kenn grabbed her hand and made her face him. "He doesn't look like an orphan to me."
Her head remained bowed down, hiding the tears. The man touched her face and tilted it so that their eyes could meet. However, just as they did, Lacus averted her gaze somewhere. "I know why you're here." Her voice sounded wounded. "That's great! I was so afraid you didn't receive the letter. Can you...?"
"I'm sorry." She cut him off and shook her head repeatedly. Slowly she moved away but his hand stopped her. "I know it's all right. You're grandfather will be...!"
"No, Kenn you don't understand," she calmly told him. "I don't want to go back."
His eyes widened; like a blade being cut through him. She never felt so uncomfortable around him. It almost fees like she was not the Lacus from a long time ago. Her eyes remained shut as if afraid of what he might say. His hands let her go; a grin hung loose on his face.
"I- I have my own life here now. I...I can't go back. These children need me."
Kenn's clenched his fists and his back faced her. "That guy, who is he?"
"His name is Kira- Kira Yamato."
"That's not what I meant. Who is he...in your life?"
Lacus was taken aback; she wasn't sure what to respond. A picture of them last night appeared on her head, and she continuously asked herself what exactly were they doing? If she said they were lovers, what would Kenn say? Moreover, how would he react when he knows... he is Athrun's best friend?
Kenn noticed her hesitation and hissed, "So...he's another introverted jerk just like me?" It was true and she could hardly admit that fact. "The thing is why would you be patient with him? Oh, why would I ask such an obvious question?" he cynically told her.
His words were piercing. Lacus noticed he was walking away from him; it made her feel so guilty and unsure. Then it came back to her; that day when they parted, she promised to herself that she'll come back for him...if her own problems will be resolved. But she met Kira and everything changed- everything drastically changed.
"Kenn I..." she grabbed his hand; an expression more confused than ever. No, I shouldn't hold him back...
"It's all right. You don't need to do this for me. I always seem to be the one who messes with the curve," he looked at her the last time. "Just like a long time ago."
He withdrew her hand from his and he walked away. Lacus took in a deep breath, this just did not happen right? Wrong, it did. And for once she wished this day would end very quickly!
"Kira, which piece fits over here?" the child asked again...for the fifth time. Kira was not listening because his mind floated elsewhere and his thoughts settled on what happened last night and what just happened a while ago. What's happening now would be something he wouldn't dare think of!
"Hey Kira, stop spacing out!" Carl said, as he waved a hand in front of him. "Do you want to see what Lacus and that new guy are doing?"
Now that's a very obvious question.
The door opened; Kira's face looked at it expectantly and saw Lacus went inside. He was happy to see her alone, but the dismayed expression on her face told him otherwise. He looked away, as Lacus passed by the playing crowd and went upstairs, maybe to her room.
"Gee, I wonder who dumped who." Carl hissed before paying attention to the little ones around him. The day passed and before he knew it, it was already nighttime. The children were all in bed including reverend Malchio. Kira was about to go to bed too when he thought of seeing Lacus in her room just for a while.
Should I take such risk?
Yes, he thought...then went to talk to her. He opened the door; her room was dark and the curtains covered the cold window this time. She often leaves the windows uncovered. He took a better view of the room and noticed that she wasn't in her room.
The brunette yelped in surprise as a voice frightened him from behind! His expression was like a child...and Lacus couldn't help but smile. "Sorry, did I frighten you?" Kira felt embarrassed! Would she think he was like a thief or would she think he was like a child? "What's wrong?" Lacus asked. Kira looked at her; her face was glowing in the dark and she looked like a living statue that was beautiful to the bones! Admiring her way was...a little not like him. Then he remembered what happened this morning- how she kissed...
Shit...will you shut that idea down for a while?
Get to the point. What the hell is wrong with you? You're being a complete jerk in front of her!
"I was wondering...who that guy was."
Okay, not exactly the question I had in mind.
Lacus looked away and entered her room, Kira thought it was a sign to follow her in. he closed door; she sat on the side of her bed and sighed heavily. "His name or who he is in my life?"
"I...uhm...his name." Kira moved closer until he was standing beside her, tempted to embrace her. "His name is Kenn Adamson."
"I see..." Kira moved away and was about too leave when Lacus called out his name in a voice filled with intense need pain and need. He turned around, only to see her face scarred and confused. He approached her, worried. "What's wrong? Did he hurt you?"
His hand touched the sides of her face, inspecting it...but his eyes came to rest on her lips. He kissed her. The contact sent shivers down her spine. He was closer now and his hand touched her hair; he was loosing control of his...jealousy. Yes, he was jealous- dead jealous! She closed her eyes as his other hand gently grabbed her shoulder. Slowly, he pulled her to a tightening embrace. Lacus shuddered as she felt the guilt wavering in and out of her, telling her of her great fault in letting Kenn kiss her, and most of all in letting Kenn get a hold of her for a mere five minutes! So...what are they, another introverted couple?
"Why...?" his voice came out wounded. "Why did he...?" He couldn't' say it. What right does he have to know the reason why? She was left puzzled but sooner noticed that he was...crying lightly. She knew that whenever he starts to fee this way, he's crying. She knew him like the back of her hand. But he has yet to know about her.
"I..." He couldn't tell it to her. Kira pulled her even closer, his breath now banging in her ears ever so gently that it was scaring her. Everything about him and her feeling towards them were so...ironic. Not for long, she felt her own tears race down her eyes. His embrace slowly loosened and their eyes met. Hers were teary and weak; his showed nothing but mystery...and pain.
"I think...you should go to sleep now Lacus." He could barely even say it! She faced the floor to hide the hanging tears as she felt his hand on her cheek once again. He was caressing it gently. Then his thumb came to rest on her lips. She was left with an unsure reaction to his touch. His thumb rubbed her lips gently and she heard him sigh, "He kissed you. Kenn must be...a very special person."
It was like death. No, more than that when she heard it from him. It felt like more than more than death! She caught her breath, not wanting to live for a while. How could he...say that? Lacus stiffened and she stopped thinking or even moving. Kira's hand slowly withdrew from her face and he passed by her. The aura that had once comforted her faded away. Lacus heard him open the door; she did not move still.
I don't understand. Why did you have to... why do you have to make me think that you'll...you're so stupid!
Kira rested his back outside her door. He was looking at his hand that had touched her lips. Guilt coursed through his entire being. Making her feel that way wasn't part of his plan; overdoing it was way out of his plan too and...
Congratulation Kira, you're such a dumbass.
Should he apologize? It was as if last night didn't happen. He was beside her right now as she read an old story book to the children while Kira remained to be the living monkey bars for the kids to climb on too. The cottage near the beach has quite handy.
There was nothing wrong with her smile, but there was definitely something wrong with her eyes. They appear to be a bit teary. Then again, his eye rested on her lips. What he did to her last night was recurring inside of him- and the feeling was full of shit!
Lacus continued to read the book; the older children were playing on the shorelines. He trued his best not too look at her and soon noticed her presence by him by. She went inside the mansion to get something. Did he hear cookies?
"Gee Kira, you seem quiet today." One child told him. The brunette only smiled. What do they know? They're just kids. What really bugs Kira the most is the reason why that Kenn guy came here yesterday. Then he remembered Lacus acting all weird before yesterday's incident. Was Kenn the reason why Lacus was crying? Or...was it his purpose for coming here? Kira was about to ask that question last night when his jealousy got the best of him.
All right already! I'm...I was jealous; WAS.
He thought he heard a car park right in front of the mansion.
Lacus wondered whose car was parked outside the house. It can't be Cagalli since she would be busy at work. Then she thought off Kenn, but brushed it off instead. Only one way to find out...
She opened the door; her heart stopped beating.
Hell had never felt so hotter.
"It's so good to see you, cuz!"
Okay, I'm really sorry for updating so late! School schedule was hectic! The entire third quarter was a bummer! We had to make our own movie. Though we were only the second best in the Horror Category, we won Best Actor...and the rest would be nominees (Oh yeah, I go to school at XUHS in the Philippines). I'm really sorry guys and this chapter was hard to write since it was removed from my head for a short while. I'll try my best to update as fast as I can. A little R and R would do.