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Re: I'm Not the Kind You Pray For [P; E?]

Postby ToxicShadow » 09/18/2016 3:54 AM

Jiro solemnly nodded his head, just once.

Watching as tears welled up in the other man's eyes, and then as he desperately wiped them away once again, just as he had before, the god smiled weakly. "I'm real. I have been watching over you all along, yes. I was never something you just made up," he reassured him. Slowly, he reached his hand out, palm upward, his entire arm shaking, but evidently inviting Kei to touch him once more, to gain proof that he was really right in front of him. For now, his body was sustained, even while weakened as much as he was. He could not afford to vanish, to give up, after coming so far.

The words that Kei had spoken next made the god smile much more brightly than before, lighting up his features in a way that almost made him seem like he wasn't so ill. Simply hearing that the other valued his life, that he was worried for him, made him happy, and relieved. It was rather poetic to hear that the one you were dying for didn't actually want you to die.

Jiro decided to make a risky proposal. There was still the very real possibility that Kei would want to run away, that he would be frightened, and not want to have anything to do with him.  Yet, if Jiro gave up now, he was as good as dead, so, in spite of the risks, he had to take the chance. "If you truly don't want me to die, will you promise to do whatever you are able to in order to save me?"
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Re: I'm Not the Kind You Pray For [P; E?]

Postby zapdragon555 » 09/23/2016 1:36 PM

Kei's eyes followed the hand, almost looking afraid to touch it--afraid to confirm the fact that his imaginary friend was real, was never imaginary, was a god... Kei's eyes flickered up to Jiro's face, and he slowly extended his own hand to touch the other's, then his other hand to cup under the god's to hold it between his own. It was worrying, how cold it was.

The young man blinked up at the light in Jiro's eyes, his own heart easing slightly to see that the other wasn't completely too far gone. Kei felt endeared to the god's smile, because he'd known it for so long, and it was far more familiar than that dead look in his eyes. "Tell me how," he said softly, conviction locking his expression into sobriety. "You've done so much for me over these years. I promise you I'll do whatever I can."
You're a door-without-a-key,
A field-without-a-fence.
You made a holy fool of me,
And I've thanked you ever since.
If she comes circling back,
We'll end where we'd begun,
Like two pennies on the train track
The train crushed into one,
Or if I'm a crown without a king,
If I'm a broken open seed,
If I come without a thing,
Then I come with all I need.
No boat out in the blue,
No place to rest your head
The trap I set for you seems to have
Caught my leg instead.

I do not exist. I do not exist. I do not exist.


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Re: I'm Not the Kind You Pray For [P; E?]

Postby ToxicShadow » 09/23/2016 7:25 PM

The warmth of Kei's hands was a welcomed feeling against his own cold flesh. The contact brought a sense of relief to the god, it was something so simple, but such a contact acted as a thin lifeline for him. Although it did not provide enough energy to even heal him in the slightest, it was enough to stop his condition from deteriorating further. It was a kinder gesture than Kei was even aware of.

Jiro found a ray of hope in the other man's words, and he couldn't keep those feelings out of his expression. Perhaps it had not been a mistake to bring him here, although it was still too early to be certain. "Then...stay here with me. Lend me your strength." He was all too aware, though, that Kei had come to often belittle himself, as he struggled to meet the expectations that had been forced on him throughout his life. So he would likely argue that he didn't have any strength to lend him, that he wasn't a strong person. And, it was a lot of ask of him.

"You are the only one that can save me. This," his gaze shifted toward his hand being so carefully held in Kei's hands, "at least, prevents me from growing any weaker. This frail body of mine resonates with the energy you create when we share close contact, allowing me to live." It was somewhat complicated to explain, and Jiro certainly left out the details that he felt were too much for Kei to hear. Revealing everything too soon could send him running and ruin the god's chances of survival. "For me, it is only your energy that is compatible, so no one else will do."
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Re: I'm Not the Kind You Pray For [P; E?]

Postby zapdragon555 » 09/24/2016 11:54 PM

Just as Jiro had predicted, Kei seemed about to protest in response to the god's first words. Powerless, yes, especially to a god. He'd heard stories about prayers giving gods strength, offerings of food and money and well wishes, but Kei had none of those, and if he had, surely not enough to sustain a god on his own. But as Jiro continued to explain, Kei's eyes widened, and shone, and flickered with a kind of importance, a kind of responsibility. His hands twitched on Jiro's, concerned that the god's fingers didn't seem to be warming up very much, as a question furrowed his brow.

"But..." Kei began slowly, his words catching in his throat. He was silent, not wanting to seem as though he were about to decline--he wasn't. It was just... "Why?" he finally asked, looking up at Jiro with a lost look in his eyes. "Why just me? I'm not special, o-or powerful, or..." he trailed off, feeling a sharp emotion well up in his throat as some faint, repressed memory trickled back into him in scattered pieces. Again, the water, shouting, car breaks squealing, prayer--he clenched his hands, then suddenly pulled Jiro closer, and pulled himself closer, arm throwing around Jiro in a tight hug, voice breaking again. "No--don't tell me. Just stay alive, o-okay? That's all I care about, right now. That's it."
You're a door-without-a-key,
A field-without-a-fence.
You made a holy fool of me,
And I've thanked you ever since.
If she comes circling back,
We'll end where we'd begun,
Like two pennies on the train track
The train crushed into one,
Or if I'm a crown without a king,
If I'm a broken open seed,
If I come without a thing,
Then I come with all I need.
No boat out in the blue,
No place to rest your head
The trap I set for you seems to have
Caught my leg instead.

I do not exist. I do not exist. I do not exist.


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Re: I'm Not the Kind You Pray For [P; E?]

Postby ToxicShadow » 09/25/2016 3:26 AM

Seeing that look in Kei's eyes as he considered his own importance, no matter how fleeting it had been, was gratifying. For years, watching him struggle with his own self worth had been incredibly painful, and Jiro had always wanted nothing more than for him to be happy, to realize that his existence was valuable. It may have disappeared before too long, but seeing him make that face even for a moment gave Jiro hope that Kei could be happy. That, maybe, he could actually be happy, here, with him.

Yet, hearing the inevitable, "but," brought a sense of dread that began creeping into his heart and mind against his own better judgement, faintly disturbing the god's calm outside demeanor, at first. He missed processing Kei's following words, his question, so hung up on the idea that Kei might leave. That he would be abandoned. There was a horrified look in his eyes, while the rest of his expression was otherwise frozen.

By the time his mind scrambled to process things through the sudden onslaught of unexpected, flip flopping feelings, he'd found himself abruptly pulled closer and embraced. His entire body tensed up, but soon relaxed; the warmth was comforting, and the faint, but still stronger sparks of energy made Jiro feel all the more alive. Instinctively, he pressed even closer against Kei, and, for the very first time, the god shed tears in front of him. They welled up in his eyes, and trickled over silently. "I'll do my best... So, just don't leave."
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Re: I'm Not the Kind You Pray For [P; E?]

Postby zapdragon555 » 09/27/2016 11:52 PM

It was nothing short of an unbelievable miracle that Kei could even feel the god in his arms. Truly, all this time, Jiro had been nothing more than a figment of his imagination... and an indispensable one, at that. But now, this... feeling his friend and confidant breathe in his arms, real... Kei had been so focused on the sensation that he hadn't realized Jiro was crying. He blinked suddenly, surprised, feeling the barely-there shaking in his shoulders and wanting to still it. He'd never seen Jiro show such emotion, in all the years he'd known him, no matter how silent those tears were.

Jiro's words brought up a troubling thought that nagged at the back of Kei's mind. He... had a test tomorrow. That exam that he'd been stressing so much over. His family. His brother. He'd screamed, when he'd seen Jiro, and now... Kei froze, jolting, his eyes flying wide. "They're going to look for me," he whispered, instinctively hugging Jiro tighter. "My family. They'll... they'll send out a search... probably." He winced, hating that he had doubts about that fact. But he did.
You're a door-without-a-key,
A field-without-a-fence.
You made a holy fool of me,
And I've thanked you ever since.
If she comes circling back,
We'll end where we'd begun,
Like two pennies on the train track
The train crushed into one,
Or if I'm a crown without a king,
If I'm a broken open seed,
If I come without a thing,
Then I come with all I need.
No boat out in the blue,
No place to rest your head
The trap I set for you seems to have
Caught my leg instead.

I do not exist. I do not exist. I do not exist.


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Re: I'm Not the Kind You Pray For [P; E?]

Postby ToxicShadow » 09/28/2016 10:33 PM

All was quiet for a moment. Jiro did not immediately respond to Kei, after the circumstances dawned on him. He hadn't expected to be hugged tighter, but he stayed there, silently, until he did one of the things he did best. He reined in his own feelings, the tears of delighted relief stopped. After sucking in a deep breath through his mouth and wiping away the streaks of moisture left on his cheeks, and he pulled away from Kei's embrace. But he didn't go far.

The god was asking a lot of him, he already knew that and, Jiro's heart ached with the possibility of never seeing him again, but he could not really force Kei to stay with him. If Kei wanted to return to the life he had, and he could be happy, then Jiro would gladly die for that future. He wanted to live, but not at the expense of truly hurting the only person he lived for.

His eyes searched Kei's face, his mouth drawn into a line and his eyes difficult to read, as he tried to grasp what all was going through Kei's head and what he was feeling. The god wasn't angry. If anything, he was sad, but this wasn't shown on his face.

Finally, he reached out, hands not on Kei's shoulders, but his upper arms. "The moment any one of them prays for your return, I will hear it. I will hear their words, every time." Even knowing that, Jiro still took Kei away.

"Earlier, I asked you, 'Do you ever wish for a different life?' I did not get to hear your answer; I was discovered and I took you away before that. Still, the choice is yours to make."

"You can remain here, to help me survive. If my energy returns, I can finally resume my duties, restore this shrine, and answer prayers of all those in this region, rather than just listening to them. If you stayed, one day, perhaps, you'll be able to see your family again; as if you simply moved away. But there is no denying that, until then, they will likely believe that you've been kidnapped again."

"Or you can return to live out the life that you were, return to your family, and I wont come to see you anymore. I wont be able to help you. It wont be long until I will cease to exist after that, so you'll have to try to forget about me. If you want to leave, I can't hold it against you; I know what I'm asking. For these last several years, you have been the reason for my existence, so if you don't need me, I'll gladly give up my life so that you can live normally."

"It's all for you to decide." Jiro intentionally spoke similar words as before, to reiterate that it was Kei, alone, that decided both of their fates.
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Re: I'm Not the Kind You Pray For [P; E?]

Postby zapdragon555 » 10/18/2016 12:10 AM

It looked as though Jiro's initial words touched Kei. The thought of hearing a wailing family's prayers for their son, and a son that Jiro himself had spirited away, no less... It was a torturous thought. Kei was suddenly thankful for his own perfect lack of omniscience.

The choice was his? Kei's focus was brought back to the situation at hand, thoughts of his family fading out like washed out watercolors in the back of his mind. His eyes locked on Jiro's, listening attentively, his posture showing no avoidance to the situation. He'd accepted that it was not a dream. But the more reality piled on his shoulders, the more Jiro spoke, the more Kei came to realize one absolute truth about this entire situation. And it was a truth that made his heart ache with a sudden anger that he could not quell.

"So it isn't a choice at all," Kei said softly, his eyes barely narrowing, tensing under the god's touch. "What kind of choice is that, anyway? A choice to throw away another person's devotion for the length of my whole life, throw away their life, just based on fear?" His voice cracked slightly, frustration in his eyes. "I can't go home, now. Not now, now that you've told me this. How could I ever go home when you'd die?" he snapped, jerking away from Jiro for a split second, before he froze, then grabbed the god's hand and held it. "I'm not letting you die. But this is not a choice."

Kei couldn't place why he was so angry, but he suddenly couldn't even look at Jiro. He didn't want to see the hurt in the god's eyes--even if he was staying. He knew his tone had been hurtful, even if his words hadn't inherently been.
You're a door-without-a-key,
A field-without-a-fence.
You made a holy fool of me,
And I've thanked you ever since.
If she comes circling back,
We'll end where we'd begun,
Like two pennies on the train track
The train crushed into one,
Or if I'm a crown without a king,
If I'm a broken open seed,
If I come without a thing,
Then I come with all I need.
No boat out in the blue,
No place to rest your head
The trap I set for you seems to have
Caught my leg instead.

I do not exist. I do not exist. I do not exist.


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Re: I'm Not the Kind You Pray For [P; E?]

Postby ToxicShadow » 10/18/2016 5:05 AM

Kei let go. Although he'd taken a hold of Jiro's hand almost as soon as he did, that fact remained. It didn't matter if he said he was staying, not when he did not want to. He couldn't meet Jiro's gaze and, for that, the god's expression fell into an indifferent mask. Rather than expressing any form of pain or sadness, he simply adopted an expression that showed nothing at all. And, what he did next, was likely not something that the other man expected.

Jiro yanked his hand away from Kei with an amount of force that was surprising, coming from someone with his weak physical appearance. Then, he forced himself entirely away from him, and up onto his feet, with his arms at his sides. His body no longer shook, but, to compensate for that, Jiro's physical form seemed to almost fade. His body became just slightly transparent, though he worked to keep contain it to places that were hidden beneath layers of clothing, it was evident on his exposed hands.

"I would rather that this life of mine come to an end then to end up hated by you, of all people. I'm not so desperate to live, that I would live with that." There was more that Jiro wanted to say, more that he almost said. He nearly slipped up and told Kei more than the better part of him wanted to, more than he believed that he could take. He could not burden Kei any further, even though part of him was tempted to speak the words that might possibly chain him here so that he could not escape. "So, if you're going to come to resent me, then you may not remain here." His words were only spoken matter-of-factly, leaving out any emotion. It was a far cry from how he had been before, smiling, in spite of everything, and even breaking down tears when he'd felt so relieved. "Don't give me false hope. I don't want it. I resigned myself to my inevitable death years ago, so just let me die in peace. Go back to believing that I don't really exist."

The god turned his back to Kei, as his final words were spoke, and began to walk away. Yes. If Kei would end up hating him, regretting his decision to stay, then he'd make the choice for him. It would be better this way, dying while still believing that the person he so loved actually cared for him.
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Re: I'm Not the Kind You Pray For [P; E?]

Postby zapdragon555 » 10/18/2016 9:39 PM

Kei gasped aloud when Jiro's hand was wrenched from his hold, his hands grabbing at thin air for a moment as he stared at Jiro's retreating form. He blinked when he realized Jiro's skin was fading--all of him was fading. Panic flashed in Kei's eyes, lips parting in surprise as he listened to Jiro speak.

"Are you fucking insane?" Kei suddenly snapped, blinking away a wetness in his eyes that burned. "You're a god--people need you, and you apparently need me. Gods aren't supposed to care that much about human life or whims--if they did, they'd..." Kei stopped himself, swallowing petty bitterness and harsher words like a bad pill. He stared at Jiro, tears springing faster in his eyes, and he hurriedly wiped them away with his sleeve, hissing air angrily through his teeth. "You were never this troublesome when you weren't real," he said, mostly as a joke--and it did sound like one, though weighed down heavily by the aching in Kei's heart that refused to leave. "Do you really think that I could hate you?"

Kei looked up when he said this, a few tears escaping the confines of his lashes and rolling down his cheek, his mouth twisting into a kind of pained smile. It fell as Kei began to walk away, anger threatening to crawl up his throat once more, and he let it. He let it out, this time. "Do you think I could live with myself if I let my closest confidant die?" He stood up, fists balling, before he took a shaky step towards Jiro--he hadn't tried to walk much since he'd woken up--and upon finding he could stand up properly, crossed the small space Jiro had walked to snatch the god's sleeve with a tight grip. "I'm going to help you. I want to help you--I'm just... scared, and frustrated. O-okay? I swear, I couldn't hate you. I can't imagine doing that." He said this with such earnestness that his voice only cracked once--and he considered that a victory.
You're a door-without-a-key,
A field-without-a-fence.
You made a holy fool of me,
And I've thanked you ever since.
If she comes circling back,
We'll end where we'd begun,
Like two pennies on the train track
The train crushed into one,
Or if I'm a crown without a king,
If I'm a broken open seed,
If I come without a thing,
Then I come with all I need.
No boat out in the blue,
No place to rest your head
The trap I set for you seems to have
Caught my leg instead.

I do not exist. I do not exist. I do not exist.


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Re: I'm Not the Kind You Pray For [P; E?]

Postby ToxicShadow » 10/18/2016 10:32 PM

Hearing Kei's words as he snapped, the god hesitated, he stopped walking away. The corner of his mouth turned up, almost smiling, hearing those harsh words coming from the other man's mouth. He didn't know that Kei could get angry on his behalf and he hadn't heard him speak quite like that before. But he didn't look back at him. Not yet. He just stood, and listened.

To him, it was a very real possibility that Kei could come to hate him and he didn't want that. Anything. He would put up with anything, but that.

Only when Kei rose up, grabbing a hold of his sleeve, did Jiro turn to face him, surprised. His eyes widened, when he saw the streaks from the tears that had betrayed Kei and rolled down his cheeks. There was a pang of guilt, an ache in his chest, for making him cry. He never wanted to do that. But the words that accompanied Kei's expression finally made the god's gaze soften. "I'm sorry," he said, as he turned his entire body to face the other man. He was sorry for everything. For putting him in this predicament, for asking so much of him, for ruining his life. But... he was happy, hearing those words. And he was sorry for that, too.

With his free arm, he pulled Kei into an embrace, and his body returned to its prior solidity in that moment. "If gods cared too much about human life and their whims, they'd be slowly killing themselves to protect it, you know," Jiro told him, speaking softly, giving an actual answer to the statement that Kei couldn't finish earlier. It was almost as if he was asking Kei, 'How do you think I ended up like this?'

He sighed, then. Jiro didn't want to push Kei any farther, so what other choice did he have but to accept his words? "Thank you. I'll believe in you, so...take care of me, all right? I'll take it easy on you."
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Re: I'm Not the Kind You Pray For [P; E?]

Postby zapdragon555 » 10/22/2016 1:45 AM

Kei was, at least, relieved when the god turned around to face him properly--and with a soft expression, no less. It made some of the twisted feeling in his own chest subside, caused it to make a little more sense, enough for him to lose some of the sad scowl in his eyes. It disappeared entirely when he was pulled into a hug, eyes wide and unguarded for a moment until he was able to react, his arms slowly moving to hug Jiro back around the waist. "I know," he said softly, because he did understand. He understood more than most people what it was like to spread yourself so thin trying to do everything and eventually realizing that everyone, even gods apparently, got burned out.

He chuckled at Jiro's next words, a soft sound tucked into the god's shoulder. "Fine then. It's my turn to take care of you, now, after all this time. Sure as hell might as well start returning the favor." He leaned away enough to look at the god, offering a kind of awkward, but sincere smile, then blinked, glancing down between them. "So... logistics-wise... how often do I need to... you know--touch you?" He paused, then flushed slightly, rolling his eyes up towards the ceiling. "Hands--hugging, whatever. You know what I mean."
You're a door-without-a-key,
A field-without-a-fence.
You made a holy fool of me,
And I've thanked you ever since.
If she comes circling back,
We'll end where we'd begun,
Like two pennies on the train track
The train crushed into one,
Or if I'm a crown without a king,
If I'm a broken open seed,
If I come without a thing,
Then I come with all I need.
No boat out in the blue,
No place to rest your head
The trap I set for you seems to have
Caught my leg instead.

I do not exist. I do not exist. I do not exist.


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Re: I'm Not the Kind You Pray For [P; E?]

Postby ToxicShadow » 10/23/2016 3:27 AM

Glad to see the sadness and anger in Kei's expression subside, replaced by something far more gentler, Jiro was truly able to smile when Kei leaned back to look at him. And those words. Those lovely, lovely words. Hearing them made his heart feel lighter, relieved once again, to hear Kei say that he would save him. He believed Kei's words so easily each time. He hadn't actually expected for Kei to hug him back, either. Tonight was full of surprises.

The question that was brought up made Jiro tense, just slightly, and he watched as Kei, feeling awkward, looked away from him. In attempting to formulate an answer, the god didn't look at him, either. His gaze shifted off to the side, and he chuckled, unable to hold it in.

"There isn't exactly a... an accurate measurement." No, he couldn't reveal the extent of things, not yet, not now, when Kei already held some indignation for this arrangement. It was far too soon. "Simply put, I could never have too much energy. The more I have, the more powerful I become. But, right now... It's more a matter of keeping me alive, not growing in power. Every moment of my existence, I'm using up energy, and I haven't had a real source of energy in years, which is why I'm nearly fading away now."

The god hesitated for a moment, but decided to be just a little bit bold. "Say, if I hold your hand when we sleep, like we were when you woke up, it provides enough energy for me not to grow any weaker. It doesn't exactly heal me, but it keeps me alive."
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Re: I'm Not the Kind You Pray For [P; E?]

Postby zapdragon555 » 11/06/2016 10:29 PM

Power? Kei wanted to ask about that, wanted to inquire more and push further, but decided that it would be best to wait until later. He wasn't sure why he decided that, considering now seemed like the time for questions, but it was an instinct that he held to. "Geez, I'm kinda important then, huh?" Kei joked, a smirk on his face that showed he was kidding.

They were still touching arms from the hug. Kei's mind moved to that and he was so focused on the soft warmth that he almost missed the god's explanation. His dark eyes flicked back up to Jiro's face. "Alright. Holding hands in sleep--that's pretty easy." I can do that with my eyes closed, his inner thoughts joked, and he smiled in spite of himself. His mind was desperately trying to make the situation lighter. "And hugs? How much does that give you?" he asked. He didn't mind hugs, truthfully. His family had never been much the hugging kind, save for his little brother.
You're a door-without-a-key,
A field-without-a-fence.
You made a holy fool of me,
And I've thanked you ever since.
If she comes circling back,
We'll end where we'd begun,
Like two pennies on the train track
The train crushed into one,
Or if I'm a crown without a king,
If I'm a broken open seed,
If I come without a thing,
Then I come with all I need.
No boat out in the blue,
No place to rest your head
The trap I set for you seems to have
Caught my leg instead.

I do not exist. I do not exist. I do not exist.


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zapdragon555
Will Draw For Food
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Re: I'm Not the Kind You Pray For [P; E?]

Postby ToxicShadow » 12/18/2016 3:34 PM

Although Kei was only joking, Jiro smiled faintly. "Very much so." Although Kei was not aware of it himself, as he didn't know how vital he was for the god up until now, perhaps, if he was fully comprehending it, to Jiro, there was really no one more important. There was Jiro's family, of course, but that was a different matter, entirely.

There was a moment of silence before Jiro answered the question. "Marginally better." There wasn't a huge difference between holding hands and hugging, admittedly, but it was better. "As I said, there aren't exact measurements..."

At any rate, there was more to do than just this and, besides, changing the subject might be a good idea, before Kei started asking questions Jiro wasn't ready to answer. The god released his hold on Kei, no longer keeping him in an embrace. Taking a deep breath, steadying himself and managing to maintain his solid appearance, he began. "Since you're going to be staying, I would like you show you around. Are you up for it?"
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Status: 12/30 We're all recovering from colds. Lingering in IRC.

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ToxicShadow
Bat Country Survivor
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