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Wayward Son

๐˜ค๐˜ข๐˜ณ๐˜ณ๐˜บ๐˜ช๐˜ฏ๐˜จ ๐˜ฐ๐˜ฏ
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The air was calm and cool, like the feeling of walking into the meadowlands that surrounded Twilight Town and the tiny, soft blades of grass are carried by the wind and kiss your cheek with that almost-ticklish sensation. The warmth of the sunโ€™s rays, though still very early in the day. It had a certain nostalgic property that made Asahi smile. He had always come out here when he needed to decompress.

Whenever he needed to relax, Asahi rode the train to Sunset Hill and ventured off the highest point of that distract that overlooked the tracks that led off into the next district with The Meadowlands surrounding everything. He picked a spot on one of the highest branches in the apple tree where he laid and just watched the sun rise, illuminating everything in its light. It was the perfect spot for someone like him who never could stay asleep past the point of just-before daybreak. In fact, he was never one to sleep for long because he never had to. Asahi was an early riser. It was just who he was.

And with summer just starting and the summer homework not yet at its worse, he was afforded the time to relax.

โ€œThis is the life.โ€ Asahi murmured to himself. He had a piece of wheat pursed between his lips and he closed his eyes, humming calmly.

โ€œAsahiโ€ฆAsahi, can you hear me?โ€

He heard someone call for him, propping one eye open as an audible โ€œhm?โ€ left his lips. He looked below him and saw nobody. He looked around and still didnโ€™t spot anybody.

โ€œAsahiโ€ฆcan you hear me?โ€

Thereโ€™s that voice again.

He swore he heard someone call for him. He heard a voice that sounded distinctly male, though something about it was distorted. He couldnโ€™t explain exactly about it was distorted. Truth be told, this was the first time he had ever heard anyone call out to him that he couldnโ€™t see them, let alone them speaking to him clearly.

โ€œHello?โ€ Asahi called out back to whoever was trying to get attention.

Well, consider attention acquired.

After a few moments of silence, Asahi was given not a response but suddenly a bright light that shone brighter than as if he was staring at the sun directly and consumed him.

A few moments later, he found himself transported out of the tree and away from Sunset Hill and he was transported to Market Street. The sound of the tram that travels through the street was faint, which meant it was on the other side of the area. Asahi was near the entrance to Station Heights, but something was off. As he looked around, he noticed something almost immediately.

โ€œWhere is everybody?โ€ He asked nobody (obviously) as he looked around, walking for a few minutes.

A portal of black smoke appeared in front of him and a hooded figure who stood about a foot taller than him stepped out from it. There was something strangely familiar about whoever stood in front of him.

Instinctively, Asahi raised his arms up, tightening his fists.

The hooded figure pulled back his hood and now thatโ€™s when it was strange because his face was blacked out other than his lips.โ€œSo, can you hear me at last?โ€

As he stood there and the lips moved, Asahi heard nothing but static. He didnโ€™t understand and it was starting to freak him out.

โ€œI see.โ€

Okay, that he heard.

โ€œIt seems you cannot hear me. Perhaps your heart is not ready for this yet.โ€

โ€œMy heart isnโ€™t ready? Ready for what?!โ€ He demanded to know.

But as soon as he was going to go forward, he couldnโ€™t move. His legs froze and Asahi was falling through the ground as it started to dematerialize. His fight or flight senses kicked in and as Asahi was falling, he hit the ground head first, smacking it on the ground.

โ€œOuch. That hurtโ€ฆโ€ He groaned and sat up slowly.

He still had a lot of pain from the fall and looked around. To his surprise, he wasnโ€™t in Market Street anymore nor was he anywhere near some hooded figure. What he was near -- or rather whom he was near -- was Yugure.

โ€œYugu?โ€ He looked at his oldest friend with a blinking stare. โ€œW-when did you get here? I could have sworn I was on Market Street..โ€ Asahi looked around and he was under his favorite tree on Sunset Hill. Andโ€ฆwait was that a dream? Could it have been a dream?
 
Last edited:

PhantomLord

New Member
If Asahi was the early riser of the duo, then Yugure was his polar opposite in that regard. He was the night owl, one who enjoyed rising and falling with the moon instead, and gaze upon the stars rather than the bright skies of Twilight Town's day. So, it only made the most sense that the time of day both men hung out around was when Sun and Moon met in the middle: Dawn and Dusk. The moment both were alert, ready and active... Though Asahi was always the far more active one.

The dark haired male arrived at their usual hangout spot a few moments later than usual, as he had taken some time to prepare a few things for their summer homework. Knowing Asahi, if it was left up to him the homework would be done on the train back to school when they and 3 months to do it properly. So Yugure knew to get things started himself. Having thought of a theme for their project, the young man felt it was time to meet up with his friend... Though clearly something was troubling them.

He had found Asahi at the foot of his favourite tree that he always climbed, asleep and... Twitching? It was like he was having a nightmare of some kind? Yugure put down his bag, and knelt down next to his childhood friend with concern. "Asahi... Asahi, wake up. Wake up, it's me... Yugu..." The other whispered, placing the blond's head on his lap for comfort. The only person he would allow the use of that nickname, a small sigh of relief escaped his lips when Asahi's deep blue eyes opened up and locked on to him.

Though... Something felt off.

"Market Street? We're about 3 train rides away from there." Pulling up the sleeve of his white button up, Yugure placed a hand on Asahi's forehead to check his temperature... It seemed fine. His pulse was normal. "It was just a dream, Asahi. Never took you for such a heavy sleeper. Normally I have to beg for you to take a break." The raven haired boy teased gently, poking the other's cheek as his head rested on his lap. "Come on, it's all fine. I've brought some snacks if that can help calm you down."
 

Wayward Son

๐˜ค๐˜ข๐˜ณ๐˜ณ๐˜บ๐˜ช๐˜ฏ๐˜จ ๐˜ฐ๐˜ฏ
Like always, Asahi had made it nigh impossible for him to relax without hurting himself. Even when he was in The Usual Spot, somehow Asahi found ways to become practically best friends with near-injury. Dart to the back? Yep, happened a few times. Overconfident in your struggle match against Noctis? Oh yeah and that silver-haired menace was fast, too!

It didn't matter, really. Asahi was just prone to injuring himself as much as he was to seeking adventure. But in his rare moments, he did like to find moments to just relax in his favorite tree.

But that dream...the dream that felt like he was free-falling into nothingness. In his heart, it was so surreal. He fell out of the tree not realizing it and had bonked his head on the grass below. For a moment, it did feel like he was falling into some kind of emptiness that was both real and...not. Part of him doesn't remember coming to Sunset Hill, but Yugure seemed confident that they weren't at Market Street. Because he's right. It was three train stops away, or if you were brave enough, about twenty minutes through the underground tunnels. Asahi didn't, of course. The last time he was there, he got lost and it took the entire gang to find him and even then they were searching for hours. Asahi passed out from exhaustion and Rai had to carry him back. Thank god for that man's broad shoulders and superior physique.

"Yeah, I know. That dream just felt...so real, Yugu. Like I've had some whoppers, right? But it just...I don't know how to explain it." Casually and with as much comfort as it brought him, Asahi rested his head on Yugure's lap. They were best friends, so it wasn't even strange that Asahi would use his friend's lap as a pillow. "Have you ever had any dreams like that? I mean, the kind that makes you second guess if it was even a dream?" He asked as he took one of the bags of potato chips and threw a few into his mouth. Eating always did help him calm himself.
 

PhantomLord

New Member
Yugu had taken this time to calmly brush through the golden locks of Asahi's hair with his slender fingers, trying to calm down his best friend from that intense dream. This wasn't the first time the boy had hurt himself, and it wasn't the first time he found himself having intense dreams. But rarely were they so intertwined with one another. It was starting to worry Yugure...

But then the other mentioned having dreams so real you doubted reality.. and Yugure bit his tongue. In truth, he had been having them more and more recently. They weren't about Twilight Town's Market Street however. They were somewhere... Much darker. Like a place where all the light and life of the world had been sucked dry. A place that was constantly hungry, wanting to feed on all it could find.. like it was alive. And every time, Yugure came face to face with a pair of giant, bright glowing yellow eyes.. and his heart almost stopped each time.

".....No. You simply have a very active imagination." The boy teased gently, patting the other's head a bit as he said that all while stealing a potato chip. "You sure Noctis didn't just hit you in the head too hard?"

It was best if Asahi didn't worry about that now. Besides, they were just dreams.... Right?
 

Wayward Son

๐˜ค๐˜ข๐˜ณ๐˜ณ๐˜บ๐˜ช๐˜ฏ๐˜จ ๐˜ฐ๐˜ฏ
"I don't know...Maybe, he did," Asahi shrugged, not really considering if Twilight Town's resident cool kid had unknowingly bonked him on his head too hard or not.

Odds were that Asahi egged that grayish-black-haired boy so much, who pompous sob so much that maybe he thought about giving Asahi a dose of his own medicine. Asahi knew that he was too gloaty and engaged in trash talk way too frequently than anyone would ever give him credit for. It was part of his style: to get inside their head and wail at them to get the points. That's what being part of their high school's Struggle Team was all about. Him and Noct were their school's two best Struggle athletes. The last tournament saw them batting it out for the #1 spot in Twilight Town.

It was fitting, given Asahi had hair as golden as the sun and sometimes Noctis brooded too much for his own good. A clash of light and darkness.
But as Yugure had said, Noctis whacked him good on the head and took home that trophy.

As he sat up, Asahi would also stand up. He had laid around long enough. His head still was pounding as bad as it did last week during that fated tournament bout, but it didn't matter now. He was glancing out, looking at the sunlight touch the Meadowlands and a smile came to his face as he turned around and flashed it at his seated friend. "Today is going to be a good day, Yugu! I just know it. Our first day of summer and we can do whatever we want!" He flashed his pearly whites at him, giving Yugure that typical Asahi cheeky smile. "Whatcha wanna do first?"
 

PhantomLord

New Member
Yugure couldn't believe how quickly Asahi's attitude could change. Every time it looked like he was beginning to look down and need help, the blond would surge back up with a jolt of positivity that.. honestly stunned the other at times. Yugure had moments like that as well, but they were mostly due to Asahi. On his own, his mind tends to clatter itself with thoughts until he spirals, but the other had always managed to be a... light whenever he finds himself in his own darkness.

"Well, I would suggest getting our assignment out of the way..." Summer Homework was usually left until the last week by many students, but Yugure was the kind to get it done asap so he could relax for the rest of the month. Though he knew Asahi was very much not like that. "...Buuuuuut, I heard Ignis' dad just opened up his dinner again. Wanna go grab a bite?" Ignis' family had the tastiest diner in all of Twilight Town; but had to be closed for a month due to a supposed rat being sighted in the kitchen. Thankfully nothing happened, and the place was open for business again.
 

Wayward Son

๐˜ค๐˜ข๐˜ณ๐˜ณ๐˜บ๐˜ช๐˜ฏ๐˜จ ๐˜ฐ๐˜ฏ
Minus the obvious pain that he was still feeling from his fall, Asahi felt great and was smiling, pearly whites and all. His eyes glistened as the sunlight added a certain brightening effect to his entire mood. One might even say there was a faint aura-like visage hugging him as he stood and glanced out at The Meadowlands and basked in the greenery that made it truly a sight to behold.

And then Yugure had to bring up their assignment.

And then Asahi slouched in a way that brought his skyward self down to the ground, anchored by the responsibility that Yugu would never and could never ignore. Asahi lived in the clouds and for the moment, but Yugure often had to bring him back for a reality check so he didn't fly too close to the sun. It was a balance that worked, but sometimes he found it to be annoying. It wasn't that he'd ever blame Yugu for that; he'd never blame his best friend for being a good influence. Without his dark-haired friend (one of them, at least), Asahi wouldn't get anything done and he was thankful to have Yugure for that. Homework and school was daunting and often allowed dread to creep in where joy cowered away, but he knew that he had dreams.

Yeah, Asahi has dreams to be somebody someday. But he doesn't want to just be Asahi, successful Struggle Player who does Twilight Town proud. He wants to be Asahi, the kid who lived his life to the fullest.

"Fine, fine..." Asahi sounded defeated, which in a way he was. But he never would show any negativity or disappointment. He might've been disappointed, but he knew Yugure was right. Getting it out of the way was, if nothing else, the right thing to do.

The mention of Ignis' family diner brought a smile to his face yet again. Asahi had two simple pleasures: sitting up top his favorite tree on Sunset Hill and watching the trains go by and eating. God, how he loved food. He loved it almost as he did being up at the crack of dawn. And with Ignis's family signature dumplings in an all-you-can-eat style, it was practically the best suggestion that Yugure could have made.

"Alright! Food, then homework! Race ya to the train!" Asahi teased his friend as he got a running head start, hopping off the edge of the hill that led downward in a stylistic front flip.
 

PhantomLord

New Member
Yugure was at least happy that the other was able to find excitement in food. Honestly, if one wanted to cheer up Asahi; his stomach was the best place to start. With all the energy he expends, it was no wonder the other was always so hungry. Watching him leap into action, quite literally stunned the other. His athleticism was almost enviable, as the raven haired male simply stuck to the longer, more boring path. "You're gonna break something one day if you keep doing that!" Yugure called out, trying to make his way faster to his friend's side.

The race took place, and it was obvious from the start who was going to win this. Yugure tried his best to keep up, but halfway through the other needed to take a few moments just to take a breather. Asahi's speed and endurance were through the roof; only the likes of Noctis and Gladio could really keep up with him. Someone like Yugure was always left behind in sports... In a lot of things, really. Asahi was the popular kid in school, while he was...

The tag along.

"Stings, doesn't it? To be in the shadow of another?" A voice called out to the Raven teen, who's eyes widened in surprise. Darkened hues gazed around, trying to find the source of the voice and pinpointing it... To the underground. A place they rarely visited, as it's darkness was honestly quite scary.. Though not to Yugure. He.. somehow found comfort in it at times.

"Wh-What?" Yugure asked, moving a bit closer to the tunnel.

"There's no need to hide it, child. We can see the truth. Left behind, forgotten, the shadow of someone so bright is indeed so large.. It almost swallows you whole." The voice sounded less like one person, and more like a dozen.. More... Almost a swarm. "But... There is peace in the darkness. As well as respect... Come closer, let us show you."

Yugure moved closer to the shadows of the Underground, unsure of what he should do. His footsteps moved on their own almost. Eyes wide, his hand almost reaching out...

He swore he saw another hand reaching out for him.
 

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