• “You moron!” Kyoto wrenched the door open, but all Maya could do was sag onto her knees and sob, “he left me. He left me. But he promised. Why Kyoto? Why do people keep disappearing from me?!”

    “Maya…” Kyoto whispered and made to embrace her, but he lightly shook his head for a moment and hardened his eyes.

    “I’m not going to give you sympathy, Maya. You don’t need it. You can sit here and cry for all I care. I’m leaving.” Kyoto slammed the door only to leave a wreck lying on the floor.

    “Josh….why’d you leave? You promised me. You said – you liked me. You said – you loved me. I loved you too….Toshi….someday….” Maya closed her eyes and leant her head back onto the wooden floor.


    Maya waited for eternity.

    Through the febrile haze of her mind, Maya thought it was Toshi reaching out for her, repenting for his sins.


    By Maya’s bed slumped Kyoto, his hands covering his face. Tears flowed down his face no matter how hard Kyoto tried to suppress his river.

    “Maya, you always think of him. Why not me? Why not the person you both left behind in your whir of excitement? You both forgot me. You forgot me. I should have known better.” Kyoto lifted his head and cast a stern gaze on Maya’s still body.

    “No need for sympathy. No place for regret. No time for apologies.”

    Kyoto placed the wet washcloth on Maya’s forehead and left the medicine bottle open. Then, he hesitantly turned away. With every step, he increased his pace until he was finally out the door and speeding into the cold.

    No space for me in this world. I’m just an extra mouth to feed, an eyesore. She’ll never return my love.

    Meanwhile, Maya stirred in her bed and muttered inaudible words, “Kyoto. Please stay by side. Don’t leave me.”

    Kyoto sat on a bench and waited for the train to come and take him somewhere.

    “Anywhere, just – just away from here.”

    The train blared its horn alerting any last passengers while Kyoto stared outside the window. He clenched his fist and turned his head away.

    No regrets. No more looking back. I won’t say I’m sorry, Maya. But I will say good luck and good bye. I won’t see you again.

    On the spur of the moment, Kyoto stood up in the moving train and yelled, “Good luck Maya!!! I may not be a great friend, but this is all I can do for you! I wish you luck Maya Orisato!”

    Kyoto quickly sat down and tried to ignore the stares of the other passengers. A faint blush creeped onto his cheek at the same time a devastating coldness gripped his heart.

    Hot and cold, eh? How’s that supposed to work out?

    He uttered for the last time, “Good bye, my love.”

    Maya gasped from the vice-like grip of her nightmare.

    “Save me, someone save me! Please….someone…help…I need….”

    “Maya, I need…Maya,” Kyoto murmured in his dream.

    Maya and Kyoto were on opposite sides of the world, tossing and turning, unaware of eachother’s thoughts.

    Unknown. Indifferent.

    They were indifferent to eachother and themselves. They were selfish. And neither knew what the other was thinking.

    “Kyoto…” “Maya…”

    While a second later, their words converged to form the only thing that could connect their torn lives as the rift increased by every hesistant moment, “Josh…”


    The youth yawned and buried his head into his covers.

    “Josh! You’re going to be late AGAIN! Hurry up!” screamed Arisa, Josh’s friend.

    “Alright, alright! I’m getting up! No need to get testy! Geez Arisa!” scowled Toshi.

    “Whatever…I don’t even know why I bother walking all the way to the boy’s dorm just to wake you up,” Arisa replied, “Anyways, I’m heading for class. Unlike you, I have a perfect attendance record. Hurry up Toshi because I’m not covering up for you during role call again.”

    Arisa shut the door and grumbled to herself, “Why do I even bother with that guy? It’s not like he’ll ever appreciate me!”

    One minute later Josh burst out of the room. “C’mon Arisa! Let’s go!”

    “How’d you get dressed so quickly?! Did you even brush your teeth or eat breakfast?!” Arisa exclaimed.

    “C’mon Arisa!” Josh grabbed Arisa’s wrist, not noticing the pink hue coloring Arisa’s cheek.

    Well, if Josh only sees me as a friend then that’ll be okay for now. I can deal with that.

    “Arisa!” Joshi’s voice jumbled Arisa’s thoughts. “I can’t believe I’m actually telling you to hurry up!” he huffed angrily.

    “Alright, alright, I’m coming!” Arisa laughed.

    Yep, it’ll be okay.

    “Hey Joshua. Who was that girl talking to you yesterday?” Arisa questioned.

    “Uh, what girl?”

    “You know, the one you were talking to on the corner of Fifth Street.”

    “How’d you – ?”

    “I was watching from the coffee shop while I was waiting for my frappuccino,” interrupted Arisa.

    “Stalker,” muttered Joshi.

    “Hmph! Takes one to know one!” Arisa countered, “So…who was she?”

    A faint memory of a little girl and boy playing blocks crossed Josh’s mind.

    “Oh. Not really sure…she was – she just mistook me for someone else she knew. Nothing important. Just … inconsequential,” Josh murmured softly.

    “ ‘Inconsequential’, eh?Where’d you get such a big vocabulary?” Arisa teased.

    “Oh yeah!” Arisa recalled, “then the guy who dragged that girl away must have been her boyfriend then.”

    “What guy?” Josh’s eyes widened.

    “Oh, I guess you didn’t notice because you turned away before the guy came. You looked like you were brooding or something,” Arisa shrugged, “I was in the coffee shop staring at the girl when you walked into the crowd. Then this guy came, whispered something to her, and dragged her away.”

    “W- What did the guy look like?” Josh stuttered.

    “Uh, he was tall and had choppy, dark brown hair. I think he had a sweatshirt on with jeans and sneakers. Maybe he had blue eyes?” Arisa’s face twisted into concentration, “What? You know him?”

    “Ah…no. No, I don’t.”

    “You’re not telling me something Joshua Hiltone!” Arisa’s eyes glinted evilly.

    “S – Stop smirking like that! I told you I don’t know him,” Josh’s back pressed up against the wall as he tried to escape Arisa’s glare.

    “Yeah, yeah sure. Now t – !” But Arisa’s words were lost on the morning bell.


    “Oh shoot! We’re late Josh! It’s all your fault!” Arisa sped down the hallway as Josh managed a quick shudder before hurrying after her.

    “Arisa, wait up!” Josh complained and inwardly sighed in relief.

    Phew. She almost found out. But, I can’t believe Kyoto’s still with Maya. Hmm…what are you doing now Maya? I can’t believe things turned out this way. What kind of a world do we live in?

    “Joshua! Stop staring at the ceiling and come on already!” Arisa called back.

    “Alright! M’ coming!”


    “Ring around the rosie, pocket full of posies, ashes ashes, they all fall down.”
    “Stop singing that song Tyrone!”
    “Why not?” The little boy cocked his head to one side, “I think it’s cool!”
    “It most definitely is not cool!” The older girl yelled, “It’s creeping me out!”
    “So I’m telling mom that you’re singing about death!” The older girl turned around.
    “Hey, you can’t do that! I didn’t do nothing wrong!” The boy raised his fists.
    “It’s anything, Tyrone, not nothing,” the girl sighed, “And I won’t tell, if you stop singing that weird song! Tyrone, are you listening?!”
    “Ring around the rosie, pock-“
    “That’s it, I’m telling mom! MOM!” The older girl sped down the side walk.

    Maya lifted her head from the cold concrete as the commotion grew distant. Ever since Kyoto’s disappearence, Maya has been frantically looking for him.
    “Four days can go by so fast…” Maya murmured, “But…I have to find him – to ask him why - Why did he leave?”

    Maya slowly picked herself up from the floor and made her way out of the alley.
    “So much for that thought,” Maya grumbled, “I can’t believe I ever thought that Kyoto would be in an alleyway. A bar would suit him more. If I was depressed, where would I be? And that’s saying if he’s depressed. Or maybe Kyoto’s really angry with me. So if I was furious, where would I go?”

    As Maya aimlessly wandered in her thoughts, she never noticed the blur of a figure coming towards her.

    “Uf! What the-!”