Genre: Angst (most probably)
Disclaimer: I own Saiyuki not.
Notes: Commonwealth Essay is causing me much stress.
Time: 63 minutes! (I’m on time! Whee! But the word count makes me sad.)
“Would it be better if I stayed?” He said in the middle of his packing. He told care to keep the tone light so it could be shrug off as a joke, “I mean, it’s not as though I don’t trust you, but you know how you are about remembering dates of collecting garbage.”
“Well, if I were you, I would be worrying myself. Living with monks.” Gojyo faked a grimace. “Urgh.”
Hakkai chuckled softly and understood the answer to be a ‘no’. What was he expecting anyway? Would he really have stayed if he had asked him to? What was he doing by faking piety? What did he really want to achieve by saying all this? The thought that he was a manipulator even till the very end sickened and revolted him him.
He could not regret. He was not a five year old kid, whatever regrets he had, he had known he would have them before doing this. And by doing it anyway, he was committing himself to be able to deal with it. It was too late to change anything.
“What’s too late?”
He was not aware that he had said that out loud.
“It’s too late…” his mind floundered around hopelessly for something less hurtful. He could not say anything but the truth; he had used up all his lies. “Too late to change,” he said at last.
“Ah.” Gojyo replied simply, “You would know.”
It was the light, Hakkai told himself. The way the light has highlighted the crimson red of his hair, the bitter wine colour of his eyes, the tinge of sorrow in the smile. All of that lent to the nonchalance of his voice and whispered undercurrents of pain.
“People aren’t given second chances, no matter what you believe. Because there are no second chances, because you can never know if things are better if you have done ‘the other thing’, there is no basis for comparison. So don’t waste your time dwelling on the other possibilities. Just do what has to be done. What will happen happens and that’s it. If it doesn’t happen in this universe, it will happen in the other one. Mathematical, isn’t it?”
The schoolteacher part of Hakkai wanted to point out the flawed logic in that. But the larger part of wanted to hold on to that thought before walking out into the sunset and going away to a place where there was no red to remind him of blood. He closed his eyes and sunk his mind into the sweet tempting dream of a world where everything turned out alright. He kept his eyes closed till he was fairly certain that his mind had soaked up enough of the sweetness before he opened them to reality.
Gojyo raised his can of beer as though offering a toast, “Come back for a drink once in a while.”
“And don’t ever forget your buddies.”
There was nothing left to say. Nothing left that words could do justice.
“So…” he smiled vaguely, “This is it I guess.” He could do no better than that, if he was any more specific, he was scared that he would realise what it was that he was feeling.
Gojyo got up and held the door open for him as he walked out.
“Don’t,” he begun at the exact moment Hakkai passed him by, “Don’t you ever think of coming back.”