Soldier

PG

Disclaimer:
All the characters in this fiction as well as the story line belong to me. The ideas came from my mind and not someone else’s, so no ideas here are from animes I’ve seen, manga I’ve read, movies I’ve watched, or books I’ve read.

Author’s Note: This’ll sound a lot like Scathe but only because it’s pretty much the same story only it’s on Tai’s side rather than on Shi’s. Please read, comment, and critique. Thank you!
Started at 8:25 am and finished at 10:14 am. A little over 6 ½ pages in length on Microsoft Word. Arial font size 12.


~Vocabulary~
-sama = Mr. or Mrs.
-bozu = kid, squirt
-kun = boy
-san = Mr., Miss, Ms., Mrs.
Tenshu = Lord of Heaven, God
Tairaka = level (an), just, peaceful
Shiraha = white feather

Unedited Version


It had been ten years since that night. Ten long, painful years, since the night a fire took his parents and his home. He now lived in his parents’ good friends’ house, but stayed up in his room, locked away for hours. When he was younger he’d cry and wish it were a dream and that he’d wake up to see his mom and dad smiling at him, kindly, lovingly. Now, though, he’d just ask himself, if there really were angels, then why didn’t they protect his mom and dad? Why’d they let them die?

He was asking himself that now, and cursing the angels as he did so. If they’d really cared they would’ve saved his parents. He sighed and dozed off knowing that tomorrow wouldn’t bring any hope of happiness to him, just like the other days these past ten years.

He woke around two in the morning, rubbing his eyes, while at the same time wondering why it was still dark out. He yawned, figuring that it must be the middle of the night, and then wondered why he’d woken up in the middle of the night. He thought about it for a second before looking at the corner of the room where he saw a young girl who looked relatively close to his age. ‘What the…? What’s a…what’s a girl doing in my room…?’

She seemed hesitant, nervous, and then she spoke to him. “Hi,” she said. He knew it wouldn’t be right to ignore her greeting, but the middle of the night? He just couldn’t bring himself to respond to her greeting. It was just…too…weird. So the room remained silent, all except for the wind blowing hard against the house, making an eerie howling sound. Thunder could be heard nearby as well, but neither of the two was paying attention to the storm, just each other.

Apparently the girl couldn’t stand the silence any longer, and so, spoke again. “My name is Shiraha, what’s yours?” she said. He couldn’t just stay quiet when she’d introduced herself to him so politely, so in exchange he introduced himself to her, as well.

“I’m Tairaka. It’s nice to meet you Shiraha-san.” He gave her a small smile, too not afraid of her presence in his room, and, in a way, though he didn’t want to admit it to himself, he didn’t like seeing her in such unease. Upon seeing him smile, Shi smiled back.

“That’s a very nice name, Tairaka-kun. You can call me Shi,” she told him. He chuckled, and shook his head.

“Call me Tai, Shi.” He figured it was only fair since she was allowing him to say her name both in a shorter way and without the honorific.

“Hm…? Oh, ok,” she said. She walked over to him then and laid him down gently, and he gave her a slightly bewildered look. “Go back to sleep. I have to leave now. I’ll see you again soon, I’m sure. Just call me if you need me, okay?”

‘Leaving…? Now...? But…I…don’t want her to go…’

He nodded and she turned away from him and towards the window. He was asleep again before she jumped out the window. There was a bright flash and she was off, soaring through the sky and towards the heavens.

Tai woke the next day to his room looking exactly the way it had last night, only no Shi. He sighed and ignored his disappointment. He dressed and walked downstairs to get something to eat for breakfast, but stopped before entering the kitchen. He stood still for a moment before going over by the wall and listening to what Koyuki and Hikaru, the two who where his guardians now, were discussing…or rather, arguing about.

“You just want to take him out of school?! Just like that! What will his teachers think! And his friends!” Koyuki said.

“All the boys are leaving school to help us fight! He’d do a better job fighting for us than getting an education, that’s for sure! He never turns anything in!” shot back Hikaru.

“He could get killed!”

“He could…but he’d die proudly for his country then. Jackunn needs his help, Koyuki.”

“Don’t we have enough men serving in our army?! What if he doesn’t want to fight!” She was pacing back and forth, obviously nervous.

“Then he’s dishonoring us! If he were actually trying in school I might actually let him decide for himself, but he’s not!”

“How do you know he’s not, Hikaru?”

“Because of his grades! Now, we’re sending him to help in our army whether or not you want him to go, and whether or not he’s willing to go! That’s final, Koyuki!”

He hung his head, wondering what would become of him once he left to join the army, and help Jackunn. He couldn’t imagine what his level of fear would be once there, whether he’d be a coward and run from the battle, if he’d live or not. It didn’t seem real to him, none of it did. For all he knew Hikaru was just mad, and it would blow over in a couple days and he’d be safe at home, in school.

He was wrong…

Two and a half years later Tai found himself on the battlefield in the frontline where he stood facing the enemy. Gunshots could be heard everywhere, and there was the possibility of stepping on a buried bomb. Smoke was everywhere, hindering the vision for both sides, and the smell of death and blood was unavoidable.

Tai stood by two others whom he’d grown fairly close to during the training and battles. “I can’t see anything!” he called over the sound of gunfire.

“Neither can I!” called one on his left side, and a little behind him.

“Yeah, the smokes just too thick!” called the one on his right side. “Oh, wait! I think I s—“ but he was cut off before he could finish. He’d stepped on a land mine, and Tai had been caught in the explosion as well.

Tai stayed where he was, lying on his stomach, unable to feel his left hand or right leg. The pain he was in was unbearable, but nobody stopped to check on him or help him, assuming he was already dead or nearly there.

He worried about how Shi would feel if he really did die. He didn’t want her to cry, he loved her too much, and he was sure that she was worrying about him now. He wished he could hold her close to him, and sooth her, tell her it was okay and that everything would be all right. If not that, he wanted to at least see her again. Her sandy hair and blue-gray eyes which he loved so much… He’d only met her once, but he was sure that this feeling he had for her was love. If only he could see her again…

“Just call me if you need me, okay?”

“…Sh…Shi…” It was hard for him to speak. ‘Can’t believe this… I knew I was hurt…but…this badly…?’

The sun was beginning to set, and the troops had already moved on ahead leaving him behind with all the other bodies. He didn’t want to die here, not in such a horrible place. He’d rather die in a more peaceful, less smoky, dismal place.

“…Sh-Shi…” he called again, and sighed, closing his eyes. He heard something hit the ground, and strained himself to look up. There, to his surprise, he saw Shi, kneeling in front of him looking as if she were about to cry.

“Sh-Shi…” he said, for a third time. He hoped he wasn’t hallucinating, and that this Shi was real.

“Yes…it’s me…” she said as small streams of tears rolled down her cheeks, and she bit her bottom lip and pleaded with herself, not wanting to cry.

“Shi…” he said, his voice soft and weak. She seemed unsure as to whether he’d really spoken when she replied to him.

“Y-yes…?” she said.

“Don’t…don’t cry… Please…don’t cry…” he replied. He started to see something bright and glowing coming from her back. ‘Wings…? Then…she must be an angel…’ “Your wings…are beautiful, Shi… You’re a very pretty angel…”

She looked at him stunned, as humans shouldn’t be able to see angels, let alone their wings. She’d known he could see her since that night a little over two years ago, but he couldn’t see her wings then. Only the dying could see an angel’s wings, and even they’d only just make out the wings just seconds before they left this world.

“Thank you…” was the only thing she could think to say. After a few moments she hung her head, but then looked over at him again and said, “I…don’t want you to die, Tai.”

He was quiet, and all too still.

“T-Tai…?”

He didn’t move at the sound of his name, nor did he reply.

“Tai!” she screamed and began to cry harder, and then she felt a strong hand on her shoulder. She looked up to see Tenshu, the “management” of the angels. He’d punished her, making it so she was to stay up in heaven, after he’d found out about Tai seeing her after one of her frequent visits to Scathe. “T-Tenshu-sama! I…I’m sorry…I left, and I was supposed to stay. I disobeyed you again…”

Tenshu was quiet for a while before he spoke. “You’re very human, Shiraha…”

She looked at him confused as to what he was telling her.

“If you give him your wings you can be human, Shiraha-bozu. Not every angel is like you, for you’re special. You can give up your wings and become human, unlike most of the angels.”

She almost smiled at what he was saying. “Would giving him my wings bring hi—“

He shook his head. “Giving him your wings would only give him life, not revive him from the dead.”

“And…you’ll let me do this…?” she asked.

Tenshu nodded. “If it’s what you want. The other girls talked to me about it, and each one of them compared you to a human. Maybe you’d be happier on Scathe, but I don’t really know.”

She smiled at him and thanked him, and he chuckled, ruffling her hair happy now that her blue-gray eyes had their old glow back. Then he left and Shi turned to Tai and picked him up and flew away, avoiding being seen by anyone still on the battlefield.

Tai woke a few days later in a hospital bed, confused. He looked around him and then at his leg and arm, and noted the prosthetics, sighing. Yesterday must’ve been a dream, he was sure. He couldn’t have seen a real angel; he must’ve been hallucinating from blood loss.

Six months later he was given leave from the hospital. He stood outside their doors and unfolded a note that had been left for him in some flowers he’d gotten that day.

“Meet me by the elm tree in the field north of town.”

He shrugged and decided to go there as things couldn’t get any weirder than they already were, like how he thought he’d seen an angel on the battlefield that looked just like Shi when he was severely wounded. He walked to the northern exit of the town and towards the field the note indicated. Once there he didn’t have to look very hard for where he was supposed to go.

Under the elm tree sat a sandy haired girl that looked to be about his age, wore a dress of deep blue coloring. As he got closer he could see that she had very pale eyes of blue-gray, which was unusual for a human. He sat down beside her and she smiled at him. He saw someone pass by and look at his leg, but they took absolutely no notice in the girl beside him, Shi.

“It wasn’t a dream…” she said.

“What?”

“It wasn’t a dream. I figure by now you think it’s too farfetched for you to have really seen an angel out there on the battlefield. You probably think it was just a hallucination from blood loss. Well, it wasn’t a dream.”

He looked extraordinarily confused and asked her how she’d known about him thinking he’d seen an angel on the battlefield.

She smiled and said, “Because… that was me you saw. I’m an angel.”

He blinked and stared, unsure if he should really believe her or not. He remained quiet. ‘She has to be mental…’

She chuckled. “I’m not mental.”

This was far too much for him. He held his head and shook it. “You’ve got to be kidding me…”

“Tenshu said that I could sacrifice my wings to give you more life. I debated over that, but I decided to take you to the hospital. You know…normally humans can’t see angels. You’re the only exception it seems. So, anyway, I set you on the doorstep and knocked and a nurse came to the door, saw you, and took you inside and helped you out. Now here you are alive, and here I am, still an angel. I talked to Tenshu about it and he gave in and said that I could continue watching you on Scathe like I am now.”

Tai stared at her, stunned, for a moment and then replied, “Ok, if you’re an angel, then where are your wings?”

“Heh, well, notice that I’m not sitting against the tree like you are. They’re there, you can feel them, you just can’t see them. Go ahead.”

He reached out into the air and felt his fingertips brush against something soft and feathery, but he couldn’t see what it was he felt. “Oh… my… God…”

“Do you believe me now…?”

He nodded, shocked. “So I did see you on the battlefield, and in my room when I was a little younger. Shiraha…?”

“Yes. Just call me Shi, okay, Tai?”

He smiled and felt his face grow warm. He lowered his head and looked at the ground. “I’m…gald it wasn’t a dream, Shi…”

“Oh?”

He nodded. She smiled and laid her head on his shoulder. He was finally happy. He’d finally found someone to love, and someone who would love him back.

*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*
A one-shot. Please comment and critique, I don't like going without them as I feel like people think that I'm unskilled in anyway and have no hope of improving.
Anyway, this is Tai's side of Scathe. People in the past have liked this version better than Shi's side of the story. I do too, to be quite honest. Anyway...Yeah.