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The Rock Hopper and the Butterfly

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Mountain air blowing through his hair, Nagisa starts to feel his mood turn uncharacteristically sour.

Taking in the greys of the surrounding rock face, the lush greens and earthy tones of the plains below Nagisa scratches his wrist absently.
He pales as something like full blown panic grips his stomach tight.

He could feel it building for the last month or so and knew (from experience) the warning signs, and subsequential mood changes that all led to why he was on the edge of the cliff in the first place.

Excusing himself from his group, he takes a seat on the cold rocky ground and takes several deep breaths of the cool alpine air.

Irrational fear churns in his gut as he quickly unstraps the velcro sleeve of his jacket and starts rubbing his right thumb soothingly over the name etched into the skin of his left wrist.

 

Rei, the name of his soulmate. Branded onto him the moment he and his soulmate were of age.

Rei, the name he woke up with the year he turned 18, wrist burning as the scar seared the delicate flesh.

Rei. Three letters made of scar tissue on the inside of his wrist.

Rei, whose extreme emotions he had been sharing for the last 2 years.

Rei, who he had yet to find and meet.

Rei, Nagisa’s destiny, the missing piece that Nagisa was sure would help him make some sort of sense of his confusing and somewhat aimless life.

Rei, who was currently so nervous and stressed and scared right now that it was starting to affect the usually easy going and stress free persona Nagisa tries so hard to maintain.

 

Gritting his teeth, Nagisa continues to lazily thumb the name on his wrist, concentrating, willing some of his own boundless energy to his distant and distressed soulmate, hoping passionately to help calm them.

 

After about 10 minutes his soulmates panic seems to subside and Nagisa braces for what he sadly refers to as “the inevitable”.

Heart in his throat Nagisa patiently endures the usual (thankfully brief) step after his soulmates' panic comes- what he refers to as ‘the dead cold emotionless void’ before the most heartbreaking part hits him.

The roaring crash of Rei’s utter disappointment and complete self loathing flood Nagisa’s mind, his soulmates pain bringing tears to his eyes.

 

It takes all of his strength to stand up as Nagisa joins his team, walking to the precipice.

 

Smiling around at his teammates, Nagisa swallows down Rei’s pain for the thousandth time.

The last time if he has any say.

 

As he jumps off the side of a Norwegian mountain, Nagisa thinks of Rei.

 

He thinks of the enormity of being able to share only his most intense feelings with his fated other half. *Sorry Rei, you didn’t deserve to feel all that pressure and anger I was holding in*

He thinks of all the smaller, subtler things he wished he could also share. * I wanna hug you when you’re sad, make you laugh when you’re feeling tense, make you smile when you’re about to cry*

He thinks of his soulmates’, intense and rapidly increasing bouts of self hate and smiles sadly to himself. *I want to help you*

 

Spreading the arms of his wingsuit Nagisa thinks aloud “I can’t stop you from hurting Rei, but I can at least distract you”

 

Nagisa embraces the free fall, fully allowing his body to give in to sensation.

Adrenaline fuelled awe and wonder wash over him in waves as he glides peacefully over the beautiful alpine forrests below.

He feels the months worth of anticipation from planning this trip give way to the most intense calmness he has felt yet.

 

He feels in every fibre of his being- completely and totally free.