The Paradox of Attraction

A Monopoly of Strangeness

Tokiya: A Monopoly Of Strangeness

Supply the logical punctuations for each statement:

If when you were born you were crying and everyone around you is smiling, then live your life so that when you die, you are smiling and everyone around you is crying.

That was reasonably easy. Mentally rolling my eyes at the content of the sentence, I scribbled down the answer [(p.q)c(r.s)] on the space provided and moved on to the next item.

If love knows no reasons, and love knows no lies, then love defies all reasons; and if love has no eyes but love is not blind, then love sees but it doesn't mind.

Unconsciously scrawling down a pattern of variables, I began pondering upon the viability of the declaration. Its familiarity sent bells ringing in my mind; it definitely sounded similar to what Kirisawa mentioned a while ago about family. It was alarming that such a sensation to which according to some testimonies renders you defenseless and holds you slave to its mirage could be so powerful. It had only brought me pain. I am staying out of its reach.

If the brightest future will always be based on a forgotten past then you can't go on well in life until you let go of your past failures or heartaches.

Lightning will strike me any minute now. I swear.

If one door of happiness closes and another opens, then it is not the case that we look so long at the close door and we do not see the one which has opened for us.

Logic and I are usually on good terms. Not today.

I entered the library, finding immediate solace in its silence. The librarian looked up, nodded in recognition and asked me if I needed anything.

"Nothing." I answered curtly.

"It's quieter than usual, Mikagami-san." She straightened her wire-rimmed glasses and patted gray strands held together by a bun. "The usual crowd is nowhere in sight. I heard that a new establishment.. what do you young folks call it… a mall… just opened, and the girls went to explore it. So you won't be bothered much. Good day, Mikagami."

I gave her a respectful nod and then walked towards the general reading area. Nobody was in sight. The librarian was right, the room was almost empty except for one figure…

I squinted my eyes and padded silently across the tiled floors. And stopped. A girl was sitting at the farthest end and in earnest concentration, scrutinizing a selection of some sort.

Oh. It was Fuuko.

Fuuko, studying. I shook my head in disbelief. Back in high school, the only time I had seen her in the library was when she verified information about a call slip announced over the p.a. system. Deny it as I might, I could not help but approve of her current disposition. Doubtless, Fuuko was a smart girl. It was not surprising that she passed the university's high standards with flying colors. It was just that in the past, the stubborn tomboy would rather cut classes than endure a boring lecture on algebraic expressions. Despite that, I heard that for some reasons, she still passed her long tests and periodical exams.

I looked at her again, to make certain I was really witnessing this scene. Her eyebrows were lined in ardent concentration, back leaning comfortably against the steel chair. One leg crossed over the other. Purple tresses were arranged neatly in a headband.

Her hair grew longer. It did not make much difference before, but as I stood there looking at her from one side, I noted a distinction. She really did look prettier now.

So what, Mikagami?

I turned my back and escaped the confines of the library.

"Class dismissed."

And right on time, at that. The bell rang its approval. Students rose from their seats and took off at top speed. I sighed, my mind mechanically reviewing my schedule. At 5 p.m., an hour from now, I was due at the laboratory for my last class, Advanced Biology. I had an hour to kill. Which, I mentally calculated, I was going to spend working on my research paper.

"Hi!" a cheery and familiar voice accosted from behind me.

I turned around to find Fuuko grinning at me, arms folded over her chest.

"What is it now, Kirisawa?" I asked blandly.

She seemed to be testing the waters. "Recca called me last night."

I rolled my eyes. "And this concerns me how?"

She looked sort of uncomfortable. "I told him you were sort of helping me with my academic load. He asked me to tell you hi."

"Is that all, Kirisawa?"

"Yes, that is all. Aren't you going to say anything back?"

I thought for a while. I was wondering about how the baka was faring in life. Did some sense finally infiltrate his thick skull? Had he changed some irksome personality traits? Was he doing well in his university course, like Fuuko? He had better be taking good care of Yanagi.

Fuuko looked so frighteningly motherly that I didn't want to disappoint her.

"Tell him to send me an email or something." I said.

She burst into a smile and tried to coax me into a hi-five which I reluctantly gave. "Well, see you around, Iceman. Don't forget the concept paper on Ezra Pound's poetry. It's due two days from now."

She skipped away, but her smile lingered in my mind's eye.

I had no idea she had that effect on me.

Shaking my head, I resolved to clear my thoughts, which, lately seemed to operate on some monopoly of strangeness.

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