Hello everyone. I'm been on a random +anima kick after what feels like not being too into the manga in forever. This is a bit random, but has anyone else noticed the influx of non-anima stories in the section lately X( It does not make me happy at all, you have no idea how long I could rant about it. I can't even find any good stories with all the unrelated junk I have to surf through. I'll be quiet though, don't want to offend anybody, after all. (If your reading this, move the stories that don't belong here! +Anima is a great manga and deserves some respect!)
Haha, I'm done now, anyway, a bit due to my frustration, here's a little one shot for all of you. Takes place directly after the end of the ninth book, so spoilers are probably abound.
Talk About It
There were some things that Cooro didn't like to talk about. Husky often joked that he would talk about anything and everything as long as he knew it existed, but that wasn't true. He didn't blame the younger boy for thinking that though, since after all, he did talk quite a bit. The only reason why they didn't know about the things he didn't like to talk about was because he didn't talk about them, simple as that.
He wasn't with the others right now. They'd just left the town with the anima race, and had set up camp a few moments ago. He'd said he was going to go look for some food, but now that he was out here, he just sitting in a tree with his wings spread out behind him, staring at nothing. The thoughts of what had happened before they left playing in his head.
Who was that man Cooro? Someone you know?
Yeah, I know him, but don't worry about it.
Taking a steady breath, he closed his eyes. That was one of the things that he didn't like to talk about. And Lyra, what she had said, that was something he didn't want to talk about either. Anima implantations and Fly, the research facility and his past, it was all things he'd rather forget. Things he was trying to ignore, but a sinking feeling in his stomach told him that it wouldn't go away that easily anymore. His friends were perceptive and persistent, if they wanted to know something, they'd figure it out.
It wouldn't be from him though, because even if he tried, he couldn't bring himself to mention those things that plagued him in the back of his mind when he tried to sleep. The others always thought he was such a heavy sleeper. He was surprised that not even Senri had been able to figure out when he was faking and when he wasn't. He must be a better actor than he'd thought.
That act was starting to crack though, only a tiny bit when he'd heard Lyra's story, and a full crack down the middle when he'd saw Fly again. It was just a crack though, the act still managing to hold itself together, but it was weaker than before.
He knew the others noticed. They were acting a bit strange as they left town. Worried. Suspicious. He wondered for how long they would try to get him to talk about it, if they even did. He knew Nana tended to try and be a bit more crafty in her problem solving.
He hoped they didn't try for very long. Maybe if his mask wasn't cracked, then he could deal with it a bit better. The smile he hided it all behind was getting harder to pull off though, and he wasn't sure how long it would be before someone noticed it wasn't real. He didn't want them to notice, for them to worry about him. He didn't deserve that care and concern they showed him.
Oh, but here he was getting to yet another thing he didn't like to talk about. How unworthy he was of their friendship. If they knew what he was sent out to do, why he'd become their friend in the first place, they would think the same thing. He didn't want them to know though. He knew it was selfish, but even if he didn't deserve it, he still cared about them so much. If he lost them, he didn't know what he'd do.
He didn't even like thinking about these things, not at all, but it all seemed to be coming to a forefront now. They wouldn't leave his thoughts, no matter how much he wanted them to, and that was why he needed to get away from the others for just a little bit. His act wasn't holding up at all, and he couldn't let them see him like this.
He couldn't let them see any of the regret, or the concern or the self-loathing he felt. He was Cooro. Happy, bubbly Cooro who always had a smile on his face, and was far too innocent and carefree for his own good. That was the Cooro his friends knew and liked and cared about, and that Cooro wasn't real. There was no way he could let them know that though, so he had to keep up his act, even if it was cracked and threatening to break.
The black haired boy opened his eyes as the sound of something walking through the forest met his ears. Looking down, he managed to get a glimpse of Husky before he'd noticed him. Setting the familiar smile on his face he quickly flew down in front of him.
He ignored the hollow feeling the false cheer left inside him. It wasn't always like this. During most of the travel, all the joy he'd felt was genuine, and that was only seeming to make the falseness even harder for him to pull off. Luckily, Husky didn't seem to notice as he jumped back in shock at his sudden entrance from above.
"Cooro! Don't do that!" he yelled, and Cooro just laughed, the small bit of familiarity letting him push those thoughts he didn't like away for just a few moments.
"Sorry, are you going fishing?" he asked, and the silver boy nodded, starting to walk towards the nearby water source. Cooro hadn't noticed it before.
"Yeah, wanna help?" he asked, and the crow anima quickly nodded, glad to be able to do something that would preoccupy his mind. Flying always helped him clear his head. Of course, there was something in the back of his mind, coming even more forward now each time he flew. A promise he made, something he wished beyond belief that he didn't have to keep.
"Hey, Cooro?" Husky asked him, managing to break him out of the thoughts he hadn't realized he'd sunken back into yet again. He had to keep focus, if he thought about it, his mask, his whole act and life he'd worked so hard to get would come undone.
"Yeah," he answered cheerfully, ignoring the small bit of concern the boy who normally tried to mask his emotions with annoyance or anger allowed to seep into his voice. Concern and worry and friendship he had no right to, but was taking anyway.
"Are you sure you're okay?" he asked, and the black haired boy nodded without a second thought. No time to let the crack in his act be seen, no time for anyone to get suspicious.
"Of course, why wouldn't I be?" he said, almost gliding down the path with his wings. Husky just shrugged, still not looking too convinced, but Cooro could tell he wasn't going to press it.
"I don't know, but you know, if something's wrong you can always talk about it with us," he said, and Cooro smiled brightly, if just a bit to cover up the irony he felt at those words. The things that were wrong with him were things he could never talk about, but he couldn't tell him that, because that would mean he'd have to talk about it.
"I know, and you too," he said happily, even if he felt the opposite of that at the moment. When they reached the water and Husky dove in, he flew above, carefully herding the fish towards his friend with his shadow.
Fly and Lyra had cracked his mask, and as much as he wished he could tell someone, he knew that was impossible. The people he was closest to were the ones he was trying to hide it from, and there wasn't anybody else to could go to with confidence. There were so many things he didn't like to talk about, so many things he couldn't talk about, and they were all chipping away at that crack, pulling it open slowly, and he put all his effort into keeping it from breaking completely.
A small frown set itself onto his face as he flew above the water, he didn't even notice it. Fly, anima implantations, the research facility, his past, his promises, his act, the things he wanted to forget, how unworthy he was of what he had, these were all things he didn't just not like talking about.
He hated them.
Poor Cooro, he's such a complicated boy when you really look at him. Well, I hope you all liked this, and please review.