She was used to hiding her emotions. From a very young age Kyouko learned that emotions where nothing but a weakness. And yet that didn't mean that she did not have any. Seeing the corpse of the love of her life hurt even her.
As Kyouko sat on her bed, locked away from the others' eyes, she stared blankly at the wall, trying to sort through her thoughts but to no avail.
It wasn't a shock that Sayaka tried to commit murder. Her actions those past few days made obvious how badly she wanted to escape from this place. So why did Kyouko feel like she would burst into tears any moment? It didn't make any sense. Kyouko had made sure not to get too close to the ultimate idol in fear of this happening, but even though she hadn't known her that well, Sayaka's death had still managed to get to her.
Kyouko's eyes grew watery, but still, she tried to hold down the painful emotions. She couldn't become weak, not now. With that thought in mind she decided to get some rest. It had been a long, exhausting day which meant she had to recover some energy.
But as soon as she closed her eyes Kyouko realized that thinking about it was in fact easier than actually doing it. Thoughts kept circling in her head that she couldn't shake off. And yet, after what felt like hours, a wave of blackness rolled over her and she sunk into a deep sleep.
Kyouko awoke to the feeling of warm breath on her face. She quickly opened her eyes, letting out a small gasp at the sight that awaited her. Hovering just above her, inches from touching, was Sayaka Maizono.
But was it really her? Yes no doubt, the long blue hair, the pale skin, everything looked like the beautiful Idol. Well, almost everything. If it wouldn't be for the darkness in her eyes that were once as blue as the sky.
Now, they were more hollow, black abysses, drained of any form of life, than actual eyes. Kyouko couldn't help looking into those dark round pits of despair, as a feeling other than grief stirred inside of her. A single spark of fear.
Kyouko wasn't able to analyze her situation with her usual calmness. She had so many questions. 'Why are you here? Why did you leave me?' But she couldn't make a single noise. All she was able to was to stare.
Then after seconds, minutes or maybe hours Kyouko woke up.She sat up in her bed, glancing around the room to see nothing out of the ordinary. It was only a dream. Kyouko shook her head, slightly disappointed in herself. Of course it had been a dream, Sayaka was dead, and nothing could change that. The weight of grief quickly returned to Kyouko as that thought came to her.
She wasn't even sure why or when those feelings started. But Sayaka was so fascinating to her that Kyouko couldn't keep her eyes away. The young Idol had hidden dephts that Kyouko would have loved to learn more about. But now that chance was gone.
Kyouko felt her eyes begin to water once more, as regret joined the negative emotions growing inside of her. She regretted not getting to know Sayaka, she regretted that she would never get answers to all her questions. Kyouko clenched her hands into fists. She couldn't break down now, she had to stay strong.
A sudden ring of the doorbell made Kyouko jump out of her thoughts. Talking to her classmates was the last thing she had in mind, but if there was an emergency she couldn't ignore it either. With a heavy sigh she got out of the bed and moved towards the door. Aparently not fast enough because the visitor felt the need to ring the bell once again. More forceful than originally planned, she swung the door open only to find none other than Makoto Naegi.
Kyouko had regained her usual cold expression, though the feelings hadn't left her. Makoto, however, wasn't as good at hiding his emotions, and it was obvious that not too long ago he had been crying. Still, the boy greeted her with a smile.
"What is it, Naegi?" Kyouko asked, her voice steady.
"I just wanted to check if you were okay, since you didn't show up for the breakfast meeting." Makoto replied in a friendly, yet worried tone.
So she had slept in, that meant she must've been even more exhausted than expected.
"Well, as you can see, I am fine." Kyouko simply answered.
She was already about to close the door again, chatting wasn't exactly what she had the nerve for at the moment, but Makoto raised his voice again.
"Are you sure? If anything's wrong, you can always-" before Makoto could finish, Kyouko cut him off, sounding harsher than she intended.
"I said I'm fine." She paused for a moment, not liking the slightly hurt look on the brunet's face. "I just think it'd be best if I had some time to myself." Kyouko added, her voice having a more gentle tone.
"Okay then. See you later, I guess." Makoto replied, not sounding completly convinced.
But that didn't matter right now. Kyouko shut the door and entered the bathroom. A hot shower always calmed her so she figured it would be the best thing to do.
In fast motions, she stripped off her clothes; she would wash them later, and neatly put them in a corner of the small room. In the shower she chose the hottest and strongest setting. Steam quickly filled the whole bathroom. It was a soothing atmosphere, surrounded by silence with only the sound of the water stream breaking it. Kyouko tried to block out her thoughts, instead focusing on the hot water pouring over her body, almost burning her skin.
This worked at first, but not for long. Quickly everything came rushing back to her, and Kyouko guessed that these emotions would be harder to lock inside than the rest. Out of nowhere, a soft voice could be heard, nothing more than a whisper.
This shocked Kyouko, confused her. No one could've possibly gotten into her room, could they? She turned off the water in order to hear better, but nothing broke the silence. There was no way Kyouko mistook it, she definetly heard a voice.
After stepping out of the shower she took a towel, wrapped it around herself and was about to leave the bathroom. Suddenly, something chaught the girl's attention. It was in the mirror, which had been completely covered by steam. Yet still, Kyouko couldn't turn away from it. She reached out her hand to wipe the spot clear, only to find that what caught her attention was none other than Sayaka.
The reflection clearly showed that the same girl that had visited Kyouko in her dream this morning was standing behind her. Her heart skipped a beat as she quickly spun her head around just to find that, like in a bad horror movie, not a single trace of the Idol was left. When she turned her eyes at the mirror it only showed her own confused face.
What was going on?It had to be Kyouko's imagination, there was no other reasonable explanation. But why would her mind be playing tricks on her like this? Maybe she was really more troubled by the recent events than she had realized. Whatever the reason, Kyouko would be lying to say she wasn't a little freaked out.
Tearing her eyes away from the mirror, Kyouko left the bathroom.She put on some fresh clothes and tried to think about her next steps. It would be a long day and she could use some distraction, but she didn't want to interact with her classmates when she wasn't sure how long she could hold her mask up.
On the other hand Kyouko couldn't stand to stay in her room a second longer. Maybe reading would distract her for a while. She opened the door to her room slowly and quietly, before leaving and closing it behind her. Hopefully, she could make it upstairs to the library without bumping into anyone. She began walking, taking the fastest route to the second floor.
Kyouko was lucky, it seemed that the other students where busy in other areas of the school. She made her way to the library without finding a trace of anyone. But once she entered the big room her hopes were shattered.
Her eyes met with the ice blue ones that belonged to Byakuya Togami. Now that she thought about it again, it wasn't much of a surprise. The heir spend most of his time in the library avoiding his class mates and especially Toko.
At first, Kyouko tried to pretend that he wasn't there, instead approaching one of the dusty old bookshelves and scanning the titles for something of interest. This was harder to do than Kyouko had originally thought, as Byakuya's presence wasn't one easily ignored.
The lavender haired girl glanced at him from the corner of her eye to meet his cold gaze looking back at her. When he spoke, Kyouko felt a rush of defeat.
"So even someone as calculating as you has emotions, interesting." He spoke in his usual condescending tone.
Kyouko felt almost ashamed of herself that the boy had managed to see through her so easily, but she wouldn't go down without a fight.
"Well, I am human and I do have emotions. I simply prefer to keep them to myself." She replied in her usual monotone voice that gave no hint of any of the uneasieness laying underneath.
There was a moment of silence before a knowing smirk grew across Byakuya's face, and he spoke once more, his voice carrying a hint of amusement.
"You know what I mean, Kirigiri. It got to you, didn't it?"
It was beginning to grow difficult for Kyouko to keep her blank expression, but she managed, refusing to give in.
"I don't know what you're talking about, Togami." She responded coldly.
"Of course you don't."
The obvious sarcasm was too much for Kyouko.
"I don't know what you intend to achieve by doing this but either way this conversation is over."
The girl spat out the words as she turned around to grab the first book that met her gaze. Then she almost sprinted out of the room to her dorm . In front of the library she almost ran into a confused Makoto but she couldn't care less and kept going. Wasn't there a single place in this school where she could find some peace?
Kyouko decided that the only way she would get some privacy would be to go back to her room. Shaking off this slight, irrational fear, she continued walking back downstairs, hoping that her mind wouldn't play any more tricks on her.
Once she sat down on her bed, after making sure that the door was locked, she looked at the book she had gotten from the library. It appeared to be a story written for young teens, some kind of mystery novel. Not exactly what Kyouko would have chosen, but it would be enough to keep her busy for a few hours.
Kyouko opened the book and began reading. It didn't take long until it became painfully obvious to her who the culprit was, and she couldn't help becoming annoyed by how oblivious the characters were being. Not fully submerged in the book, Kyouko still took notice of her surroundings. A faint whisper could be heard once again, but this time it was clear to her whose voice it was.
She couldn't see the idol and yet the whispers didn't stop. She decided to simply ignore it, no matter how terrified she was. There was no way it was real. It just...it couldn't be real. Sayaka was dead, Kyouko personally confirmed that while investigating the lifeless body that belonged to the once energetic girl. A shiver ran down her spine.
The more she tried to block it out, the louder the whispers got. It was all Kyouko's imagination, and she knew this, so why was this fear growing inside of her? She couldn't help peeking up from her book, and was met with a flash of dark blue hair. As quickly as it appeared, it was gone.That was the moment Kyouko stormed out of her dorm.
She had to go anywhere, anywhere but that place. Her imagination was going crazy and it didn't make sense. It was too much. How was she supposed to handle all those feelings? The sorrow from losing her love, the pure terror from meeting her again. Kyouko couldn't find an answer, no matter how hard she tried.
As Kyouko made her way through the school, even she didn't know what she was doing, or where she was going. She just had to get away, away from that sweet voice she thought she'd never hear again, and away from the images her mind was creating.
A bit later she found herself in one of the classrooms, not remembering how she got there. Like it mattered. Behind the fear and confusion, all Kyouko could feel was pain, and she had no idea how to deal with it.
She hadn't known Sayaka much longer than a week, so why did the loss hurt so much?
Kyouko slowly sat down at one of the desks, staring blankly at nothing in particular. She couldn't remember ever feeling something this painful, a feeling that made her want to curl up and sob her heart out. Then again, she couldn't remember much at all. It felt like Kyouko had been sitting in that classroom forever, but she still didn't want to go back to her room.
She wasn't sure how cold she could act if she met one of the other students, as her mask was already beginning to crumble. Of course, right after she finished that thought, the door to the classroom swung open and two green eyes where looking right at her.
"There you are Kirigiri! I've been looking for you everywhere...Are you okay?" Makoto asked in a worried tone. Not waiting for an answer, he continiued: "After you left the library Togami spoke to me and...well..."
Kyouko hoped that she didn't look as angry as she was. After all, it wasn't Makoto who she wanted to yell at.
"What did he tell you?" She replied in a tone that was more icy than she planned.
"Just that... well, he said your emotions were showing... and that what happened seemed to really affect you..." Makoto trailed off, and Kyouko silently cursed the heir.
She didn't know what to say- he was right, but she didn't want to confirm it. She couldn't appear weaker than she already did, but Kyouko felt as if she could fall apart at any second.
After a moment of silence, Makoto spoke once again, his voice clear with concern.
Warm tears where rolling over her cheeks. She couldn't help but let out a sob. Since when did she let her emotions control her? It was embarrassing to show such a weakness, and yet the tears didn't stop.
It was like a barrier deep inside her broke and let all her feelings flow out. And as if that wasn't worse enough, it was right in front of Makoto.
"Kirigiri..." Makoto said quietly, shock clear on his face. Kyouko wanted to get away, to push these emotions down and stop the tears from flowing, but she couldn't. She couldn't move, and all she could do was cry.
She didn't even realize how close Makoto had gotten until his arms wrapped around her. Usually, Kyouko would reject such close contact, but now she felt herself involuntarily clinging to the boy. It was wrong, so obviously wrong. So why did she feel better from such a silly gesture?
There where so many things these last days which didn't make any sense to hear. It was like her whole world was turned upside down and Makoto was there to give her strengh.
"Kirigiri I'm sorry. If I would've known how you felt earlier I could've...I ..."
Kyouko shook her head, burying her face in her friend's shoulder.
"N-no, Naegi... there's nothing you could've done..." Her voice was shallow and cracked, "no matter what... she'd still be..."
She hated being in this vulnerable state, but Kyouko couldn't help but be somewhat thankful that it was Makoto she broke down in front of and not someone like Byakuya.
"Wait, so what he said is true? You had feelings for Maizono?"
That name cause her to sob even louder.
"Sh-she was there. Why was she there? Sayaka died! She is-" Before she could say more nonesense Kyouko quickly shut her mouth.
"What do you mean by that?" Makoto asked in a confused tone.
Now she regretted opening up even more. There was no way the boy would believe her. She didn't even believe herself. But now it was too late to back out.
"I saw her, in my dreams, in the mirror, and I heard her whispers..."
"That's just grief... it's not too strange to still feel the presence of a lost loved one." Makoto explained in a consoling tone.
Kyouko pulled back slightly, wiping her face with a gloved hand. She felt slightly better now that she was able to get it out, but still, the tears kept coming.
"I-I guess... that makes sense..." Kyouko breathed out.
"You don't have to feel bad for showing emotions, it's only natural."
What he said sounded too unreal. To Kyouko, emotions always meant weakness, they where nothing but a burden. But being held in such a gentle way and being able to express her feelings, it just felt right. Almost relieving.
"Thank you, Naegi." Was all she said.
Finally, the tears stopped flowing, and Kyouko was able to start calming down. It felt as if a weight had been lifted, and though she was surely still upset, it was nothing like before. She looked at Makoto, giving him a small, rare smile.
"I think... I'm alright now..."
"I'm glad. Should we go somewhere else?" Makoto asked and looked around the classroom.
"Yes, I think I will return to my dorm now. Thank you for...your support." Kyouko replied and hoped that the brunet wouldn't notice the hint of pink on her face.
She got up and started walking towards the door. But then her surroundings became blurry until she was surrounded by darkness. In the distance she heard someone calling her name, probably Makoto. But that didn't matter to her. Not when someone so beautiful stood in front of Kyouko.
It was Sayaka, but not the lifeless figure she'd seen before. Her sky blue eyes shone bright, and she was the same happy girl Kyouko remembered. A faint light seemed to radiate off of her, and seeing her smiling face filled Kyouko's heart with joy.
Sayaka stepped forward, towards the living girl, and reached out a hand to cup her face.It was like all the pain was taken away and got replaced by pure happiness. Looking in the face she never thought to see again, which had been taken from her forever, it was more than she could have ever asked for. All her senses screamed that this was wrong, and yet she didn't manage to care.
"Sayaka..." It was nothing but a whisper that escaped from her lips.
The blue haired girl looked at Kyouko with a gentle smile. They both stood there, looking at each other and taking it all in. A comfortable silence rested over them, and Kyouko wasn't scared anymore, as the idol's gentle touch seemed to take all her fears away and replace them with reassurance. Soon, Sayaka started to slowly fade away. Kyouko wanted to reach out and hold her, to keep her there forever, but she knew that she couldn't.
"I love you." And with those last words, Sayaka was gone.
"I love you, too." Kyouko cried out.
Slowly she opened her eyes, and her gaze met with Makoto.
"Kirigiri! You're awake!" He seemed relieved. "What happend?"
It took her a few moments before she was able to give an answer.
"Nothing, I'm okay."
Kyouko decided that she would keep that memory, Sayaka's last goodbye, for herself, and hold those words dear. A small smile graced the girl's face at the thought of it, and in her mind, she made a single, heartfelt promise.
I'll never forget you, Sayaka Maizono.