Archivist's note: this was written for the "Name Game" challenge.
I miss you, I say, as soon as you answer the phone. You make a startled noise, then hang up without a word. Closing my eyes, I swallow hard and hang up as well. It hurts, not having you nearby. I'm not sure where you are now, all I have is your cell phone number. You must still care, I know you do. Otherwise you would have at least told me to stop calling.
The next day I try again. You must have looked to see who it was this time, after yesterday. You don't answer. My throat closes up before I can manage to leave a message. I'm the one who made it, grinning as you blushed. If he doesn't pick up, he's a little...busy. Probably with me. Leave a message and he'll get back to you as soon as I'm done with him.
You snatched the phone away as soon as I was finished, your face turning red. You didn't delete it though. I think secretly, you liked it. You still haven't changed it. I wish the words were true. I wish I was with you.
I still don't understand why you're avoiding me. Was it something I said, something I did? Something I didn't do or say? Tell me and I'll do my best to fix it. You know I'd do just about anything for you.
Or at least, after all these years you should.
He doesn't understand why I'm not angry or bitter that you left. Tries to needle me with taunts about how you must have found someone else and didn't have the heart to tell me. I do my best to show no reaction, to keep it all inside. It's hard. Part of me wants to throw him up against his locker and beat the shit out of him. It's kept in check by the part that's really you. You wouldn't do something like that, wouldn't want me doing that. It's the only thing that saves him.
The others don't seem to know why you left either. Then again maybe they do and just don't have the heart to tell me. I'd rather it was the former.
The next day I try again, calling from a payphone this time. I can tell I've surprised you. Quickly, I pour out my fears -- Are you mad at me, what did I do? Was it something I didn't do? What do you want me to do? Are you... coming back?
You're quiet for a long time then whisper that you just don't know. The words twist me up inside. What do you mean you don't know? Is it really that bad? In a way I'm glad you don't know. It means that you haven't decided and if you haven't then there's still a chance you'll come back.
Without a word, you hang up once more.
Perhaps I love you a little too much. Yeah, yeah. I'm not usually the one for the mushy crap. Its true though. I do love you. Nearly more than I can stand. You're on my mind all the time, filling up the space in my day even when you aren't here. Not the same. I'd much rather have you here, not just on my mind.
Your voicemail clicks over to tell me that sorry, you've run out of space and my message was cut off. You're usually good about keeping up with that. The only way your mailbox could be full was if you'd either gotten a swarm of calls or... If you'd saved every one of mine.
I wake up to find my phone ringing. Scrambling, I almost fall out of bed trying to reach it. Damn blanket, get out of my way! I'm too late. One missed call. It was yours.
My fingers are shaking as I dial your number. There's this strong mix of anxiety, fear and hope all crowding in my chest for room. It makes my heart pound and my hands are suddenly clammy. Please, please, please answer.
The first words out of your mouth as you answer on the fifth ring, before I can even say anything.
Thought you had...found someone else. Someone who suited you better. I decided to step back, to let you be with them instead. It hurt just seeing you though, so I took a little vacation. I thought that if I got used to not seeing you, maybe it wouldn't hurt so badly when I did.
I'm speechless and you hesitate before continuing.
I couldn't forget about you, no matter how hard I tried. It didn't help much that you kept calling every day you say, your voice wry. It made it that much harder not to tell you how much I missed you too. Finally it was beaten through my thick skull -- if you had fallen for someone else, why had you kept calling me, trying to talk to me? One would have thought you'd be glad I was out of the way, though knowing you, you'd be feeling a little guilty as well.
The phone clicks and I blink at it, not really able to comprehend that you just hung up on me again, after all that. I hadn't even gotten to say a word! The key in the door stops me in the middle of trying to call you back, hoping it was just your signal or your battery. I turn and see you leaning in the doorway.
You give me a sad smile but your eyes are full of hope. Will you forgive me for being such an idiot?
"Oh, Ryou..." Of course I will. Right after I get done beating you to death with my pillow.
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