You and I have always been together
In preschool and kindergarten when we played together and laughed
Except for those times when you fell… On your face
In first and second grade when you said girls should play with girls
Well, nothing a punch in the face didn't fix
In third and fourth grade when you said girls should be cuter
This time I kicked you in the balls
In fifth and sixth grade when you started to rank the girls in the class
I tore that paper up with hatred and called you stupid
But no matter how much I hated you..
I stuck with you throughout all these years
Even in seventh grade when you called her pretty
Even in eighth grade when you declined her confession
Even in ninth grade on graduation day when you said you made a mistake
And ran back to her to confess and accept her feelings…
But now matter how hurt, upset, mad, or angry I was at you
I stuck with you throughout all these years
Even when you held hands with her
Even on Valentine's Day
Even on White Day
But maybe I should have really given up when you kissed her.
Given up on this pointless,
I should have moved on to others
Or maybe I should have just enjoyed youth while it lasted…
And I did for a while…
But when I saw you for the first time in what seemed like ages
I found that I couldn't quite quit on that
unrequited childhood love.
If I really, really think back, everything probably happened right around the time Neito moved into my neighborhood, right into the house next to mine. That was when I was four, attending preschool just because my father thought, “it is necessary for her to develop her mind at a young age”.
Hana (H-AW-NA- japanese name that means flowers), my mother, decided to greet the Akamis, even though my father distinctly told her he wasn't interested in them. But Mom wouldn't have it.
"Get up, darling, or I'll drag you there." So, dressed in my frilliest dress (really, it was disgustingly lacy), we went next door, rang the bell exactly two times, and waited, anxious smiles plastered on our faces (or in Dad's case, a fake anxious smile).
Finally, just when never-give-up Hana Pigami, was about to concede and admit no one was going to answer the door, it swung open, revealing a man in his mid thirties or so.
He had an unshaven face, and sleepy, annoyed eyes. His whole face sagged down with irritation, as if we had just awakened him from his daily nap, and he was now extremely upset with us. Adorned by him was a plain, sleeveless, white shirt, and striped blueandwhite boxers; he had socks that stopped in the middle of his calf, and his feet were shoved into a pair of ragged bunny slippers. His hair was a hue of blazing red, just like a rosy fire. For a moment, Daddy gave Mom an I told you so glance, and then smiled warmly.
He stepped up in front of Hana to extend his hand for a firm shake. The neighbor took it, clearly still disturbed by our sudden visit.
"Hello, neighbor!" Dad announced after he let go of the man's hand. "Welcome to the neighborhood. We are the Pagamis. My name is Yato, this is my wife Hana, and this here is our little, precious daughter, Serena." It was only after I was mentioned that the man moved.
His unchanging expression suddenly cracked into a grin, and he asked me, "How old are you?"
With as much gusto as I could muster, I replied, "Four…and I'm still accounting."
"Honey, it's counting," Mother corrected, giving a quirky smile. She cleared her throat, and greeted the man, who was glancing behind him occasionally. "Hello, my name is Hana. I hope you don't mind that I brought you some pie." The disheveled man took the pastry into his hands, and smiled.
"No, I don't mind. Because…" A crash came from inside the house, and the redheaded man snapped around, and yelled, "Neito! If I that was anything of mine, I'll wring your neck!" Hana gave Yato a sideways glance, suddenly considering the thought that Father might have been right this time around.
"Sorry, Dad!" a shrill voice called from within. The man, apparently named Mr. Akami, turned back to us.
"Sorry. That's just my son. He's four year sold, just like your daughter. That's why I asked her for her age…he tends to get bored easily, so I thought a friend might make things a little better."
"Hey, Dad!" the little voice had suddenly become louder, "Hey, instead of a dog, can I get a samurai sword instead?" The man rolled his eyes, and opened the door a little wider, permitting us to see who the speaker was. It was a boy. Well…obviously, a boy named Neito. Except he had spiky locks of hair that was arranged messily, he unusually had two, somewhat sharp canine teeth that poked out a bit with his mouth open. His face broke into a huge smile when he saw me, waving enthusiastically. And the most surprising part: his eye…
"Your eyes are bright, shiny blue! There glowing!" I said in astonishment, pointing to his head. His hands flew up to his cheeks near his eyes, and he gave a reproachful look. "They're purple." (It was nowhere near purple)
"It’s neon blue, don't worry about it. This kid can be stubborn…and his case, his stubbornness kind of makes him stupid…a lot," Nieto's dad assured me, ruffling the boy's hair playfully.
"Nah, I'm not stupid. I know my multip-lycation table all the way up to the one's," Neito said proudly.
"No He doesn't." His father sighed, and patted his son on the back cheerfully. "He only knows addition, and he's not very good at it."
"Hey, I'll get the hang of it once I know what's so useful about it. Anyways, Gerana – I heard your name from inside the house, what's up with your dress? Looks like someone threw up sparkles and rainbows all over it."
I looked down at my clothes, and then raised my head to meet his gaze. "First of all, stupid, it's Serena! And second of all, I hate this stupid thing, too!"
"Serena Pagami!" Hana gasped, disapproving of my insult delivered to spiky, black haired, neon blue eyed, idiotic kid, named Neito. "Apologize now."
"S'all right…I don't really mind bein' called an idiot. Primarily because I know big words like 'primarily'."
"But still!" Mother protested.
"Hey, are you going to go to preschool?" I asked, cocking my head to so that the image of Nieto's face was turned a little. I heard Mother harrumph as she was interrupted; I would be scolded for it later, but right that moment, I was preoccupied with questioning the boy before me.
After a moment, he tilted his head as well, and gave the thumbs up. "Yeah, dad says I need to work on some mathermagics some more, or somethin'."
I straightened myself, and Neito followed suit, staring as I clapped my hands in delight. Not one of my other friends attended the same early learning center as I did (since they all lived in different neighborhoods – only social events like Family Fun Day at the park brought us together), so I rattled off the next question ecstatically. "Morning or afternoon class?"
He nodded, "Morning."
"So am I!" I smiled at him happily, and after a moment's hesitation, he did the same. His father pushed him from the back, so that he stumbled forward a bit. "Hey, ‘C, do you wanna go play hide-and-seek?"
“'C?” I looked at him with a slight tilt.
“Yeah…” He looked at me and I nodded. “'C' for Serena? I thought it would be a nice nickname for you.”
I brightly smiled. “Yeah, I like it alot!”
“So, wanna play or not!” He asked anxiously.
Warily, I raised my head to look at Mother, who stared back at me, considering the pros and cons of the situation, just as she always did. Finally, her shoulders relaxed, her smile returned to her lips, and she nodded slowly.
"She said I can go!" I said needlessly to Neito, grabbing his hand to pull him along. His heels dug into the ground below him, and he asked me sheepishly.
“Aren't you going to change out of that thing first?"
I looked down at myself once again. "Good idea."
Two months later, I stood at Neitos doorstep – wearing a baggy tshirt, cargo shorts, cap, and baseball mitt – slamming my finger on his doorbell repeatedly.
From within, I could hear the stifled moan of Mr. Akami as he called, "Neito! Would you get the door already!?" I heard the locks click in a flurry, and finally, that boy came out, a baseball bat slung over his shoulder.
With a sigh, he smiled at me, and muttered, "Sorry about that. I couldn't find my lucky hat." Twisting my hair up into a high ponytail, I waved the apology off.
I half smiled as Neito lifted his hands up and placed his hat on his. Backwards.
“What are you doing, Neito?” I sighed, and mentally face palmed.
“What?” He smirked and leaned back. “It’s my swag!”
I rolled my eyes, "Yeah, yeah…let's go to the park." He obliged, dragging the head of the bat on the ground as we passed by the front gates of his house.
Neito looked up into the sky, where it had gradually become gray and dismal. "Are you sure it won't rain today, ‘C?"
"If it does, we'll just take shelter somewhere. Besides, it was sunny moments ago…only someone took too long in getting out."
"Well, who ever heard of two four year olds going to the park to play baseball by themselves anyways? We should have had at least a few more people." I rolled my eyes, punching him in the arm so that he would stop complaining. He hit me back, rubbing his arm sourly. "
“If it rains and I get sick, you're taking care of me." I began to punch the baseball into my mitt repetitively, and I licked my lips excitedly. "That reminds me of a soap opera my mom and I are watching. It's called, ‘You in the Hospital’. It's about this man who gets injured in the First World War or something like that, and he has to go to the hospital in some town. This lady gets put in charge to take care of him, and they start to fall in love!"
"But then, the guy's old girlfriend comes back, and says that his dad arranged for them to be fiancés. So the lady who was taking care of the guy is all upset because she can't do anything about it. But then, one day, when she comes into his room to give him some breakfast, he kisses her right on the lips!" Natsu took a moment to stand at the side of the sidewalk and pretend to vomit.
I waited until he was done, and decided to continue walking with me. "Well, I'll tell you one thing," he declared, "that's never gonna happen between you and me, ‘C."
"Well, of course not, stupid. The World War's over – both of them and I want to become a famous writer, not a nurse."
"No, not that," Neito said in irritation, "The part where those two sappy people fall in love, or whatever, and kiss. We'll never succumb to that kind of thing."
I stopped for a moment, partly because I was trying to figure out what 'succumb' meant, and partly because I was annoyed by what he had just said. "Well, why not?" He turned around to face me, thoroughly confused.
"Because we're just friends, ‘C. Why else?" The hand inside my mitt clenched, and I replied in a controlled tone, "Sometimes friends fall in love with each other. Why can't we?"
"Those other people are different. So, you and I are different from them, ‘C. Trust me, we're just friends."
"Well, what if I wanted to become your girlfriend in the future?" As I said the question, an elderly couple passing by chuckled and muttered,
"Kids these days are so advanced." I spared them a glance, and once again devoted my attention to Neito, who was shaking his head condescendingly at me.
My hands itched to push him down, but I stayed rooted to the spot, my hands locked at my sides. "You can't, ‘C. You can't become my girlfriend."
"That'd be gross! Like I said, just friends. End of discussion."
No, not end of discussion, I thought, my eyebrows slanting down into angry lines. My hand inside the glove had become sweaty. All of a sudden, I wanted to run back home again, crawl under my covers, and just ignore Neito for the rest of the week.
"Well, ‘C, come on! We'll never get to play baseball if you linger around like that!" I scowled, but ran to him anyways.
He seemed unaffected by our conversation, and that fact made me even more upset. "Dad's right. You're stupid."
"What was that for?" he protested. But before I could answer his question, a large boom sounded from overhead. I tripped just a little, but Neito managed to catch me before I could fall flat on my face. He looked at the sky, and immediately looked down when he received a raindrop in his eye.
"It's beginning to sprinkle," he groaned, crossing his arms and glaring at me.
"Don't be a jerk, especially when you know it's all your fault we didn't get to play," I spat back, throwing my hands over my head. Suddenly, the light sprinkles of water became heavier, and we stood there in amazement as the drizzling became a downpour.
"I stand corrected," Neito said through clenched teeth, "It's not beginning to sprinkle…it's already pouring."
Keeping my mouth tightlipped, I took him by the collar of his shirt and dragged him underneath the sanctuary of a supermarket cloth canopy. It was curved and about four feet wide, but we pressed against the wall anyways. Without hesitation, Neito checked the market's front door, but it was still locked from the night before. The grocery mart didn't usually open until ten in the morning, and the last time I had checked the time, it had been eight o'clock sharp.
"Great," he moaned, sliding down to the ground. I followed suit, shaking droplets of water from my ponytail; my clothes clung to my body, and I began to shiver relentlessly. I tried to hide it from Neito, stifling the noisy chatter of my teeth.
"Come closer," he directed me, "You're cold, right?"
"Yeah," I said reproachfully, but the bite in my answer was eaten away by the clattering of my teeth against each other.
Neito shifted uncomfortably as I scooted closer to him, looking the other way as I stared on straight ahead.
After a long moment had been filled with silence, I whispered, "Hey, Neito?"
"You know how you said we're friends?"
He sighed, "Yeah, ‘C, just friends." I fell silent, thinking about my next statement before it was actually thrown out.
"Well, we'll be together forever right?" Neito didn't answer, and I looked up indignantly. "Right?" Still no reply. "Natsu, whether we're in a relationship or just friends, we'll be together forever, right?"
Finally, he looked at me, his facial expression softened. "Yeah, ‘C, we'll stick together like glue."
"Then let's seal it with a pinky promise."
The boy groaned, bringing the palm of his hand to his face. "Do we got to?"
"Yeah, Neito." Slowly, the boy brought his pinky up and intertwined it with mine, wincing as I wrapped my finger around his. "Pinky promise. We'll always be together forever, and stick to each other like glue."
I smiled at him. Gradually, he did too, and muttered, "Yeah, like glue. I'll come to you whenever you need help ‘C."
Now, years later, if you go up to my room, open the door really quietly, and sift through the top drawer a bit, you'll find out that it has a false bottom. If you lift that up, and slip your hand underneath, you'll pull out a rumpled, ragged diary with my name scrawled on the cover. For the sake of this story, you can open it. Turn to the eleventh page or so and read: That rainy day agreement seemed real. We even made it official with a seal. But day by day I have to say That promise dies. And soon, it'll become nothing but A lie…
Day by day, the plot thickens…
Thank you all for reading! The next chapter should be up soon. And for all of you to know an author on fanfiction.net gave me promition to base this a story off of her original one so the story will be similar to hers.