Happy Valentine's Day everyone! After that angsty fic earlier for Secret Santa, I wrote this piece, also for the Secret Santa event, as a pitch-hitter. I hope you accept this gift for this lovely day.
[Original note: Happy holidays everyone! This Secret Santa has been great and to you, lovely halcyon-conservatory, I gift you this piece of reunion. After the angst reunion fic I've written for this event, this is a bit of a more light-hearted(?) take on NezuShi reunion so I do hope you enjoy all 3k words of it. Without further ado, enjoy your gift! - whims-of-insane-fandoms]
Write happy endings, not tragedies
Shion was walking through the park, humming to himself as he watched some of the petals from the flowers dance in the wind. The wind even tousled his shoulder length hair. He was lucky that his ribbon helped keep his hair out of his face. He extended his hand to catch a pink petal before he blew it away.
Spring was in full swing, and it made the city look beautiful. It was even more so than three years ago when many gardens and parks were constructed to help the environment following the fall of the wall and the old government. There were more in the edges of the city and where West Block used to be.
The park he was in had a large garden that was by his home where the wall once stood. It was the closest one to his new home and, by extension, Nezumi's home. He hadn't told his mom that was one of the reasons he decided to live where the wall used to be.
The other reason was because a lot of people hadn't wanted to live there out of fear that the land was cursed. As years passed, people realized that there was no curse, and it was safe to live here. Inukashi had been tempted to move for just a second but replied that they preferred their home and that it was better for the dogs. That's how things had been for at least three years.
It had been at least three years since the day Safu died, since the walls came down, since Nezumi left.
Shion had continued on with life after the day that everything in the world changed. He couldn't mope around too much about losing the love of his life and his best friend in one day. He had to keep on moving forward.
Well, at least that was what he had to do because stopping meant thinking about what he had lost.
The truth was that he had felt like there was a hole in his heart, one that hadn't been healed in these three years. He could only be that honest to his mom. His mom seemed to understand everything when they found each other that day three years ago.
She had said nothing as she held him in her arms, and they had cried together. When he told her about everything that happened, she offered her unconditional love and support to him to help, even knowing that she might not have the impact she could hope for.
Her support and understanding helped ease the pain, but it could never erase it.
Losing Safu would always leave a hole in his heart. She was his best friend for years, his close childhood friend that he had loved dearly. He couldn't really continue living as if that loss didn't hurt. Leaving her behind still hurt him, no matter how many years passed since that day. He could never get Safu back. He could never see her again. At least there was a chance he could see Nezumi again.
Nezumi was a different kind of hurt, even if it also produced a hole in his heart like Safu's death did. He loved Nezumi but the love he felt for him had been different than the one he had possessed for Safu. The loss of those two loves in one day would have left him a wreck if it had not been for Nezumi's promise before he left.
Reunion will come, Nezumi had promised.
He just didn't say how long it would be until then.
No letters, no phone calls, no attempt to contact him. No one had spoken of a young man matching Nezumi's appearance in three years. Shion tried to pretend it didn't hurt. After all, Nezumi didn't contact him for at least four years the first time they were separated. The main difference between those two gaps was that Nezumi stayed away because he was a fugitive and because of the government. Nothing like that could impede them now yet he still hadn't come back.
Waiting made him restless. Shion wondered, in his darkest moments, if Nezumi would ever come back. Would he just be another memory of a loved one that he had lost like Safu? Even worse, would he come to forget that unforgettable face, the face of the person he loved? Would the only times he could see Nezumi be when he fell asleep and dreamt of him? He hoped that was not the case because he could hardly handle the thought.
For Shion to keep going and not be overwhelmed by those fears and sorrows, he had to temporarily leave the cage that was his mind on occasion.
Shion paused in his walk, moving his hair from his face as he sat down in a bench. This park was the place where he went to clear his mind and also where he got inspiration to write in his spare time. He took out his journal and a pen, jotting down ideas as he hummed.
He didn't know exactly when he decided writing, just that it was a good way for his voice to be heard in the aftermath of his loss.
He didn't write about the truth of No. 6 like so many people wanted him to when they somehow discovered his involvement in the collapse of the government. Instead, he wrote about his experiences with Nezumi, Safu, his mom, Inukashi, Rikigia and all that he had lived through. He wrote his story and, somehow, that captivated people more than the lie they had lived.
His writing helped him deal with the losses he had to suffer because it helped him say things he could never say aloud. Rikigia and Inukashi thought that writing down everything would heal him from all the hurt. Only his mom knew that it only helped him ease it, just like everything else did. No hurt could just be magically erased.
Writing became almost second nature and, before he knew it, Shion was an author with a small following. He published his works on one of the newer websites done during the reconstruction, a way to offer people entertainment during such a hard time.
His most beloved story was the tragedy of a god of death loving a god of life that were doomed due to being opposite forces. As of now, that story had ended with the two of them being separate with little hope of a reunion for the sake of humanity's continued existence and their own heavenly duties.
It was a poorly written reflection of his promise with Nezumi and their prolonged separation. That didn't stop people from sending him emails hoping to sway him that the two deities should be together, humanity be damned.
You can't keep lovers apart, one fan wrote in a tearful email, you have to let them have their happy ending.
Shion felt the same, even if the writer in charge of his own story hadn't seemed to catch the same message. Otherwise, Shion and Nezumi could be together now instead of spending three years hoping that he could see Nezumi again.
Shion felt the wind pick up. He kept a tight hold on his journal and pen before he noticed his his hair ribbon begin to fly away. He tried to reach it, but it slipped through his fingers and caused him to drop his pen.
"Damn!" Shion cursed.
He picked up his pen and immediately put it in his pockets alongside his small journal. He turned his attention back to the ribbon that had landed on a patch of flowers in front of him.
As he stood up to grab it, the wind blew hard again, making petals cover his line of vision and sending his ribbon flying again. He turned around, trying to catch sight of the ribbon. To his unfortunate luck, the wind suddenly made his hair get in his face.
This had to be some kind of cruel prank from the world, Shion thought to himself as he tried to move his hair from his face only to have the wind seemingly pick up more. Heavy winds hadn't even been reported for today!
Just as he mentally complained about his situation, Shion heard a familiar voice began to sing a very familiar song.
"The winds sweep away souls, and people snatch away hearts."
It couldn't be Safu. Safu was dead, had been for three years. He was just hearing things in his mind. He tried to dwell on it before his ribbon smacked him right in the face. He groaned, not because it hurt, but because of this whole situation.
Even worse, just as he reached out to grab his ribbon, it flew from his hands and further into the garden. Shion groaned as he went chasing after it, mindful of the other people around him that were leaving because of the high winds. He wanted to do the same, but he had to catch his ribbon, his mom's most recent gift. He didn't want to lose it.
"Nevertheless, I shall remain in this place and continue singing."
The song seemed to become stronger as the wind picked up. Shion struggled to move his hair to see his runaway ribbon as he continued running. He was sure it was lost and was thinking of what to say to his mom when he could see someone in the distance grab it.
The person was dressed in rather dark clothes. He couldn't make out more of that person's features, though, because the wind kept getting in his way.
"Thank you!" Shion shouted to be overheard over the wind, "You got my ribbon!"
The person turned to him but, again, Shion couldn't see their face because of the wind. Seriously, what was wrong with the weather today?
"Please, somehow, send my song to where it must reach."
That familiar voice he could only hear in his dreams and memories.
Could it really be?
The mysterious wind began to die down, and Shion moved his hair just as the person that caught his ribbon outstretched his hand to give it to him. He hadn't even realized they had gotten so close until now. Shion looked up and time seemed to stop just as the wind stopped completely.
It was as if his wishes had been granted.
"Please, somehow, receive and accept this song of mine."
Standing before him was none other than Nezumi, the person he had been longing for these past three years.
He looked almost the same as he had all those years ago. The same beautiful eyes and the same face greeted him. His hair was shorter than three years ago, just reaching his nape, but it was undoubtedly Nezumi. His clothes were obviously different with the exception of his scarf, but it was Nezumi.
Nezumi looked just as shocked to see him. Shion couldn't blame him. His hair had grown longer since the last time they saw each other, and he'd grown at least two inches in the past three years. Even if those were the only differences, he was sure they shocked Nezumi as much as Nezumi's small changes affected him.
With the abandoned knapsack discarded on a flowerbed, Shion knew could only infer that Nezumi had just come back from his travels. They had met again by pure chance and Shion found himself thanking the winds for their sudden appearance and disappearance.
He was tongue-tied, staring at the boy he had been missing for three years. Nezumi's hand was still outstretched, holding Shion's ribbon. He was clearly just as tongue-tied as he was. What did you say to your loved one after not seeing each other for three years?
"You look great, your hair is different."
The two of them had spoken at the same time, awkwardly saying the first thing that came to their heads. Shion could feel himself turn red out of embarrassment that those were his first words to Nezumi after three years, and something in Nezumi's mirrored expression showed he was having a similar ordeal.
Shion couldn't help it.
He'd gone over this kind of scenario so many times and each one had been more dramatic than the next. He'd dreamt of the two of them kissing during their reunion, declaring their love for each other, and making promises to stay by each other's side.
Instead, the two of them had been reduced to awkward teenagers. Reality had set them up for a dramatic reunion with the wind but, alas, they had not been able to say such dramatic first words.
"What are you laughing about?" Nezumi said, speaking with a small smile and eyes filled with warmth. Shion found himself missing those small things about Nezumi.
"It's just so good to see you." Shion admitted, smiling through his laughter.
Nezumi didn't need to reply to that. Instead, he closed the gap between them and enveloped Shion in a hug. Shion felt his knees going weak for a moment before he wrapped his arms around Nezumi's neck. He closed his eyes, not even caring if anyone saw them.
Nezumi was really here.
Nezumi had come back to him.
"I'm sorry I'm late." Nezumi said as he tightened his hold on the hug.
"At least you came back." Shion said, "You made me wait three years, but you came back."
"I promised, didn't I?" Nezumi laughed.
Shion pulled back to see Nezumi's smiling face before pulling him closer. Shion closed his eyes as the two of them kissed, their first kiss since the goodbye kiss three years ago. That made his heart race faster and he hoped that Nezumi felt the same way he did.
Reunion had come after all and he couldn't be happier.
As he pulled away, Nezumi placed his hair ribbon on his hands. Shion began to tie his hair back as Nezumi went to pick up his knapsack. When he came back, Shion's hair was manageable and Nezumi looked very excited.
"That was quite the welcome home kiss, Shion." Nezumi admitted with a grin that suddenly made Shion remember the way Nezumi was, "Have you been taking lessons while I was gone?"
"As if." Shion replied, "You just forgot that I am a good kisser. The things you forget in three years, huh? Should've come back earlier so your memories wouldn't be so skewed."
Nezumi rolled his eyes affectionately, reaching for something in his bag, "No, I remember you were bad at it. Don't tell me you practiced on a pillow while I was gone."
The thought made Shion want to both hit Nezumi with his knapsack for being so annoying and hug and kiss him for still being the Nezumi he had grown to love. Absence makes the heart grow fonder indeed. Even if Nezumi could be so Nezumi, Shion was just so glad to have him be there.
"Remind me again about how great my goodnight kiss was compared to your goodbye kiss." Shion teased.
"You're a lost cause," Nezumi said, grabbing a smaller bag and passing it to Shion.
Shion opened the bag and, inside, were several small trinkets. A small bottle filled with soft sand, a conch shell along with other small seashells, crystals and colorful stones, colorful bird feather and a letter addressed to him.
"The world is healing," Nezumi answered, "I don't know when it started but everything was fine and it was beautiful."
Shion held a seashell in his hand, just imagining the places Nezumi had gone. A small part of him was sad that Nezumi had seen those sights without him but he was mostly happy for him. Who else could be so lucky to see the beautiful sights of this world?
"I'll take you to see them, Shion."
Shion looked up just as Nezumi kissed his cheek. Shion smiled again at Nezumi's words, feeling his heart soar. This felt too good to be true, but he didn't care. After waiting for so long, he had made to the moment he had been dreaming for.
"Let's just focus on the small stuff first." Shion said, grabbing Nezumi's hand, "Tell me everything and I'll tell you everything."
"Everything? That's a tall order."
Shion could see how happy Nezumi was and he felt the same amount of joy. The way the two of them stood together, it was as if the time they spent apart had never happened. The two of them fit together so well, like connecting pieces of a puzzle. He began walking and Nezumi followed without any prompting. The wind moved slightly, making the petals fly then fall when they was no wind.
"It's not something that's impossible do, right?" Shion questioned.
Nezumi smiled, the hair ruffling his hair and making him look more handsome than he remembered. Shion was filled with so much love and adoration over the person he was afraid he could never see again.
"I love you," Shion admitted
He didn't need verbal confirmation that Nezumi felt the same way. The way Nezumi looked at him and the way he tightened his grip on his hands told him everything he needed to know about his feelings.
"I love you," Nezumi replied before looking at the distance with that loving smile, "Tell me, Shion, what have you done besides wait for me by the window?"
"For one, not much waiting by the window," Shion replied, "I was writing."
"Oh? About what?"
"That's so unromantic," Nezumi deadpanned.
"Says the Hamlet lover." Shion teased, "I think I might add to it to make it less of a tragedy after all."
"Wait, keep it a tragedy. I want to read it."
Shion laughed, "What about you? I didn't think you would cut your own hair."
"I didn't. The person who did lived to regret it when they lost their cutting arm."
"How do you run into trouble without me? I thought you said I attracted trouble?"
As the two of them laughed and shared stories of what they had done in the past three years, they began to forget how long they had spent apart from the other. They had fulfilled their promise of reunion. They were happy as they walked their connected path without looking back.
Maybe they could have a happy ending instead of a tragedy after all.