There is a wall of glass between us. Did you know?
There were times at which she felt as if he was the only one in the world she ever needed. Like when he made her laugh like a baby being tickled, when his words sounded like a melody not because he sang but because no one had something like that to her in a long time.
That is how it starts, right? With innocence?
At the point they were at, she could tell him anything and he would not doubt her judgment. Almost anything.
I’ve been watching you for a long time now. Did you know?
He was the one untarnished, unchanged constant through all her turmoil. Not that he’d always been in her life.
For years, she’d considered him as competition. She could count the number of times she’d seen him face to face on one hand. Everyone knew about him, and he was always Mister Perfect. She thought he would be full of himself; possibly so much that he considered everyone else inferior.
It would’ve stayed like that. Their paths wouldn’t have crossed because most of the times she was busy with other things. Her parents, her siblings, her friends, things that were obviously not meant for her.
They’d never talked before, so when they did it was hard for her to believe that he actually found her thoughts interesting.
I wish I’d thought of you earlier, now that I know you.
I wish I knew you earlier…
Life threw her a lot to deal with. Sometimes she had to bear the consequences of others’ actions, sometimes her own. Her heart craved for adventure. As a result, she found a child’s life boring. She almost wished something would go wrong, like, perhaps being orphaned.
So, when the foundations of her near-perfect life gave way, she stood straight. She let the slabs fall on her, crumbling to transform universal truths into lies in her world. From amidst the debris, she crawled out in one piece. Her life was different from that point on. They say you truly understand the value of things only after you lose them. She learned to value them while she still had them. She learned to love the things she had, no matter how insignificant they were. She learned to give people a chance even though she knew most of them didn’t deserve it, because unless one made mistakes one could not learn.
She learned many things, probably enough to last her a lifetime.
What she didn’t know was that the darkness would continue to haunt her, even as she reached for the sun.
I stand at the wall at times, hands pressed against the glass, waiting for you to appear,
“… Namida mo itami mo hoshi ni kaeyou*…” she sang to herself when the wounds burned. They didn’t burn very often, but when they did they left her reeling. And they did more these days.
How many miracles could one person get? How much longer would turning the tears and the pain into stars work?
The lights on my side of the wall look bright, don’t they? But the truth is, I don’t know for sure how long they’ll last.
Is it selfish of me to ask a share in yours?
She remembered his smile. It was one of the brightest smiles she’d seen. And even after all these years, it was the same. Unchanged.
Every time they met he reminded her of how different things looked on the other side, the untarnished side. Every time they spoke the ghost of a smile was etched across his face, reminding her of how she could turn that into a full-fledged one with just one word if she wanted. It’d be the same.
Every word he said to her in person made her heart skip a beat. And that was when she knew she was in pretty deep.
This wall was always there. I let the wrong people in at the wrong time, and I hoped they would understand, that they’d pull me out.
That I wouldn’t have to do this alone.
It took a lot to come this far, and I don’t know how much longer I’ll last. But I think I’ve found the right person to break me out.
There were things she wanted to tell him; things that had the power to drive her insane, things that could damage her beyond repair. After all, she could tell him anything.
He was different from the others. He didn’t treat her as an inferior when she probably was. Instead, he listened to her childish rants, something she only saved for people she was comfortable pulling her walls down in front of. And he told her things most people took for granted.
He laughed with her about things she never thought he’d like. They took some of life’s biggest challenges in the same current. Turned out, they understood each other better than she ever thought possible.
I’d call out to you, but I’m scared. I’m afraid of losing you.
She almost told him everything. Almost. One thing stopped her.
What would he say? What would he think? What if he isn’t ready for this? What if… she wasn’t good enough?
What if my shadows are too dark for you?
What if my past is too big for me to shut away?
She had a dream in which she stood in front of that wall of glass. The light overhead flickered. On the other side, he stood with his gaze fixed on her. A quizzical expression was etched on his face.
She felt frantic. She could tell she had little time left; the darkness was chasing her, reaching out its hideous claws to trap her. It was suffocating. She wanted to pound on the transparent barrier. Cry out and tell him how lonely it was in there.
She settled for resting her hands on the glass instead.
He thought she was strong. She didn’t want to have to ruin his image of her. She was tired of fighting those demons on her own. She needed a hero, and she’d honed him for that. So, she’d wait for him.
It wasn’t a façade. Believe me, it wasn’t. It still isn’t. I just didn’t want you to see the ugly side of me.
I know I’m being selfish. But was I ever anything else?
I can feel the darkness creeping up to me, and this time it’s stronger than ever.
In her dream, he reached out to her. He touched the spot with his fingers where her hands now bare clung on the other side; on the verge of giving up. She could feel his warmth through the cool clear solid. His eyes found hers’ which were glassy with tears threatening to spill. Then, he spread them flat. From the centre of their palms cracks began to web. The glass chipped in places and fell to their feet and shattered to a million pieces.
His eyes held a smile as if to say, “I can never know what its like to be you, but I’ve got you.”
The barrier between them disappeared and her hands slipped into his, their fingers fitting in like the pieces of a puzzle. He pulled her out of the dreary uncertainty that was life behind that wall, and their lips met.
I’m waiting for you.
It was only a dream. She knew he wouldn’t come to that wall. He probably didn’t even know it existed. However, she waited anyway. She showed up every day, and waited for some sign that would tell her that he would be there.
That he would come.
That he would save her.
I’m waiting for you, and I’ll stay like this till I know for sure…
… Will you come?
AN: * = Japanese song lyrics. Translation: “Turn the tears and the pain into stars”.
Lyrics from FMAB 2nd ending theme.