Yakusoku’s eyes flew open as he shot up in the creaky bed. His breathing hitched, he tried to suck in but it was a failed attempt which sent him coughing and wheezing, and staggering for the toilet across the room. White knuckling the rim of the seat he emptied his stomach into it. It felt like he’d been vomiting fumes he’s so empty. How could that be when he’s been eating, meager as the scraps are they’re still scraps. It’s been like this for a day and a half now.
Mamoru would go in and he would come out. And the exit from his mind always made him wanna vomit because of the rocking waves of brain waves sloshing back and forth between them, not only that, but the numerous memories just drifting and weaving in and out and along with his own thoughts make him dizzy. It was an odd sort of madness. He can feel all these emotions and questions lining up for answering, but the doors and windows would close and lock, or disappear before he could approach for the answer. He wondered if Mamoru were closing them, or perhaps his own fears?
He spat the last of his dry heave and the rest of the memory of the dark haired, laughing woman from his mind and into the toilet before whirling around and dropping onto his butt. Funny. His butt is a lot cooler than it should be. Did he get undressed when he was out of it? Did Maria come in and do something? Looking at himself he notices quite a few new things that haven’t been there before... namely large bruises that look on the brink of healing. They’re on his legs, his arms, his torso- stings like a bitch- even his face stung. And why is he naked?
Crouching infront of him Mamoru grabs a handful of Yakusoku’s hair. “Still think I’m the bigger threat?” He asks cryptically.
“What ha- aahh..” He groaned when his jaw flexed during longer conversation.
“Maria played a nasty little trick on you when she brought you upstairs after I’d advanced on her.”
“What are you talking about?” He gropes at his bruised jaw.
“She brought you upstairs, gave you a little nicey-nice conversation, some tv time, a last meal on Earth and before you could get a grip on your fucking balls Maria had you by the short and curlies.”
Yakusoku tried to make sense of that. Seeing Mamoru gesture towards the mirror he shakily got to his feet and walked over to the tiny mirror over the sink. His gasp could have sent him into an asthma attack from sucking in so hard. His face is bruised up, one eye slightly blackened, the left side of his jaw is red and swelled.
“While you had your guard down behaving like a scared little pussy about mysterious ME, she didn’t exactly take it well that I had planned on attacking her, so she took it out of you. Whoops!” He threw his hands up in a shrug.
“But... I spent so much time up there with her... talking, and all that cuddling shit.” He touches his face not wanting to believe his reflection. “And my clothes...”
“Delusions that she placed into your mind while you lay nearly unconscious down here. So you never got that fine pair of trousers you were sporting- sorry.”
“But it all seemed so real.”
“That’s the power of mind control. Everything can seem real.” Walking over to Yakusoku, he places his hands on the male’s shoulders and gazes at their twin reflections in the mirror. “But the part where you remembered me and all that biz about me helping you, that was real. I will help- or I should say I have helped you- and I have managed to merge with you well enough that I can take over your body and not have you flipping out like you had before.”
“I’m so confused.” He says softly while also staring at their reflections. “None of it was real... then why did she do it?”
“I already told you-...”
“No. I mean, why the delusions?”
“Trust. She knows that you wouldn’t go upstairs and be all kind and sweet to her if every time you did you’d behave all nervous and shit over the thought that every time you get around her, Lucian’s big ass will come out of nowhere with a baseball bat and knock you around?” He taps his index finger to Yakusoku’s temple. “Keep them loyal when they crack by being nice to them. She’s waiting for the next episode of crazy to come out of you, then she’ll sweep you off your feet with kindness and you’ll start to fall madly in love with her protection from the boogeymen in your brain. It’s not healthy to be afraid of nothing, Phoenix.”
“I wasn’t afraid of nothing.” He turns and walks tiredly back to the bed. Climbing in under the warmth of the covers he turns on his side and gazes sadly at the prison bars. None of it was real. And he fell for it! ‘Why does this have to be my life?’ He wonders. Glancing over his shoulder when Mamoru climbed in bed behind him he sighs.
“I’m sorry... really! But now you know the truth about her, both of them!” Mamoru peeks over his creator’s shoulder to see his face. “They can’t be trusted, and despite how little you know about me, it doesn’t mean I’M the bad guy. ...I’m just colorful.” He grinned toothily like a fiend hiding in the bushes ready to strike on some poor unsuspecting loner in the forest. “But, now that you and I can share this bod’ without that itchy feeling of being trapped in the background on your half, we’re getting out of her pronto.” He steals a glance at the cell’s entrance. “When Maria comes down to check on you, we’re gonna ambush a bitch.”
Yakusoku didn’t believe it. He’s gonna be here forever; this little beaten and celled up universe of eating and putting up with Maria’s come-ons, is proof of that. It all felt so real, though. He’d been eating, and hanging out with Atsuko, and watching movies and cuddling with the SHE-witch. For it all to have been a lie produced whenever Maria would come to check up on his injuries, he supposed; and she would just put the memory there. Fucking frightening. He could have been beaten into a coma and strapped to this bed, being fed fluids and lies all at once like some fucked up brain and body stew. He’s got to get out of here!
A silence settled between them then with a sigh Yakusoku says. “I thought I heard Ludwig’s voice.” He scoffed out a snicker at the idea. “I could swear he was talking right to me...”
“Before... when I was asleep, or knocked out... whatever.” He corrected himself.
Mamoru’s eyes sharpened a hair. “You’re mistaken. It was probably a memory mixing in with one of mine... it happens.”
“Yeah.” He said quietly. The pain in his face and his body are making him drowsy that was for sure. “The people I keep seeing... they’re my old family, aren’t they?”
“They’re your only family if you want my opinion.” Spat Mamoru; wrapping an arm around Yakusoku he rest his cheek against the male’s shoulder. “The Lands are just keeping you warm.”
“I don’t see it that way. I don’t even remember those people.”
“Uso o tsuite wa narimasen. Besides, it shouldn’t be their fault.” Mamoru said very finally. “They had nothing to do with what happened that night- you took off running, and they weren’t the reason.”
Ignoring the alter’s anger Yakusoku asks. “I’m not lying.” He commented on the part his imaginary friend spoke in Japanese. It was funny. He wasn’t even aware he knew that much Japanese anymore. Sure he’s been taking lessons, but he’s slacked off heavily once meeting his new friends. “Can you tell me about them?”
Rolling over, he faces the figment of his imagination or someone who is quite possibly really here with him. He doesn’t know what’s fake or what’s real anymore, so why fight it? He can just go nuts and get used to the new normal.
“I can feel something when I see them, but I don’t know who they are.”
“Its been years... they’ve changed a lot since we last saw them I’m guessing.” Readjusting his lay, he sighs to calm his sudden bubble of rage to tell his friend about his old life. “But the faces you see are what they used to look like... there’s your partner in crime Emiko, she’s your mother.” He smiled. “We always called her Mom’iko because we thought it sounded so authentic Japanese, and at the time we didn’t knowOkasan.”
“So I really am Japanese?”
“Mhm. And German too, although, I took to learning it a lot better than you did, so...”
“German? German.” He said it as though he were tasting the reality of things he would never have known on his own. That would explain why his friend put on a German accent before, and why he slips into its accent once in a while when he speaks- or at least now that he knows what’s up, Yakusoku knows that's what’s being done. And it explains why he has blue-green eyes and a non-Japanese nose.
“Mom is complicated. Powerful woman, wouldn’t let an ant crawl over her foot, and yet, she loved getting into trouble with you or looking the other way whenever you did something wrong.” He snickered softly. “I remember one time when you knocked a big ass hole in the wall sliding down the stairs with your blanket wrapped around you, and she saw the hole and said “you gotta hold onto the wall when you come down or carry something heavy, sheesh” aha ha. When Dad saw he asked, who did that!? And she said she was getting help with the dresser and it slipped.”
“That’s nice.” Yakusoku smiled faintly trying to remember the memory on his own, but it wasn’t coming.
“Mmm.” Intoned Mamoru fully emerged in his thoughts. “She’d sneak you away sometimes for ice cream or cheeseburgers, you were obsessed with them when you were younger.”
‘Still kinda obsessed with them now.’ He thinks absently and recalls fighting Gev over something to eat to counteract the drug induced buzzed his best friend had going.
Eating pizza wasn’t exactly something he wanted to do while the gothic vampire bit into him, or tripped out or something. Grease and sauce is a bad combination for a new car. Plus, burgers always win over pizza. He misses them. He’d give anything to eat one again.
“And you know, it was always funny to me that Mom was the one that dealt out the punishments. Dad was too palsy for that sort of thing.” Stroking Yakusoku’s ragged dirty hair, he looks up at the male from his resting place on his chest to ask. “See if you can remember his name on your own.”
Yakusoku thought about it. He closed his eyes and searched every crevice of his mind but all he could come up with was. “Devon?”
Making a sound like a buzzer on a game show, Mamoru shook his head and rolled his eyes. “I’m starting to think you’re doing that ‘not remembering’ thing on purpose.”
“What do you expect when that was another life that I’ve never once thought about- and not by choice... what happened to me that I can’t remember?” He wondered mostly to himself.
“Forget about it. Your Dad’s name is Trevor, not Devon, and he’s sporty and palsy- funny- a complete clash to Mom’s powerful cool. But they love each other, that much I know. And your younger sister Ce-..”
“I have a sister?” Yakusoku interrupted. “What’s that like?”
“Great. She’s like your friend Gev’s sister, Victoria, when it comes to you, idolizes your every word like you’re a king or something. Her name’s Celes and sheeeee’s...” He dragged the letter as he thought. “Fifteen now. You have an older brother too.”
“I wouldn’t lie. His name is Sh-..”
“Shuhei.” Yakusoku heard himself say. “He’s tall and a sarcastic creep, but I thought he was so cool.” He took in a slow breath unable to believe he knew even that much.
He could see the male’s face a little bit from Mamoru’s memories brushing against his own. Blond, blue eyes- well, Trevor’s eyes are blue-green like his own- but in comparison, it’s Shuhei who is every bit their father. But Shuhei cared about him... he thinks. Yakusoku’s eye winked closed when his right temple began to throb.
“Stop fighting the memories. It’s good that you remember... Those people love you. They’re your family. And besides, if you remember, it’ll make things easier for you if you ever need to use your gift on your own; you gotta stop bolting the door shut.
“It’s just too weird to me, though. I don’t wanna be some freak!” He snapped.
An agitated sigh left Mamoru’s nostrils and he waved his hand of dismissal. “You didn’t have any friends back then, I mean, there was one kid named Tony but he thought you were weird when you made your sister’s doll dance the Macarena with your gift.”
“See! That’s exactly what I’m talking about.” He rolled back onto his side to stare at the cell door. ‘Maria; even though the diary was a fake she really went through that sort of thing... loving and losing people because she’s different, and just wants to fit in. Guess I can kinda understand her pain.’
“Doesn’t mean abducting you was right, though. Stay focused, we’re not living with the looney bitch because she’s got the sympathy vote. Maria can and will eventually kill you, either because you stepped out of line or she got bored with trying to rule you.”
“Why do you know her so well?”
“I can look into people’s minds, remember? I’m much better at it anyway than your dumb-butt.” Mamoru shifts uncomfortably making it seem as though he’s hiding something.
Hell, to the captive male, it seemed like just about everyone was hiding something from him these days. But he wasn’t about to dwell on it. Why bother? He wasn’t going to become any less distracted from the other issues at hand by a lesser one as, ‘what’s going on behind my back?’
“When Maria comes with food, I’m taking over.” Mamoru touches Yakusoku’s hair. “We cool with that?”
“Yeah.” He said defeatedly.
“Good. Because you didn’t really have a choice.” Resting his creator against his chest he looks down at the top of his head and asks. “You tired? You should probably get some rest.”
Yakusoku nods or possibly lulled his head lazily in response since he already seemed halfway there. “Mamoru?”
“Is Yakusoku my real name?”
The imagined friend rolled his eyes hard enough to make a sound doing so. “Yup, the Land’s are clairvoyant and just knew your name was Yakusoku.” Playing his fingers down Yakusoku’s torso like he was unzipping him, Mamoru adds. “I’ve been calling you by your name the entire time I’ve been around you, you know...” He waited for a reply but none came.
Yakusoku has fallen asleep.