The next chapter of Mechanics
Title: To Dream
Pairings: Still none so far
Rating: PG (for now)
-When I woke up, I was on an operating table. And that surgery…it felt like they were messing with my head. I don’t want to go back there again. We’ll run away-
-Where would we go?
-Someplace. Someplace far away.
Chapter Two: To Dream
Tala knew he wasn’t a robot. But he knew he wasn’t completely human as well. He knew that there were things he excelled at, which no one could beat him at and he knew there were emotions humans experienced that he would never have the pleasure or knowledge of understanding.
He stood at the crossroads of human understanding and scientific evolution.
He didn’t quite know which road to follow.
“Tell me Tala, what are you? The dream or the nightmare?”
Both and neither, the answer would come to him in his dreamless nights. He could never dream, never grasp why Kai cried at night curling into a ball of shelter. He couldn’t understand why Bryan screamed when he woke up in the middle of the night and his amaranthine eyes would blaze with fire. He couldn’t see why Ian whimpered and Spencer would whisper a name in the night when no one could hear you scream. In the city which has been robbed of its riches and ravaged by war’s masters.
He would lie awake every night and ponder his teammates and sometimes wish he could see what they could see. But he could never dream. All that lay between his rest and wakefulness was a hollow blankness that left him cold and fretful in the morning.
Sometimes, he thought sleeping was death and the hollow darkness was the death that will swallow him up in its emptiness if he fell asleep for too long.
When he bladed with his teammates, they would never look into his eyes. They were scared of him, all of them. Even Kai who strode past every obstacle and burned with a passion most cannot withstand to and Bryan who reined in the power of dexterity as he tried to retain as much humanity as possible in the world. This world, this place that their lives revolved around.
Tala hated this world. Despite the fact, he didn’t even know what exactly hate is.
Life was boring, Tala felt as he pushed Bryan's blade out of the ring. He wanted to yawn, but he didn't know how. Or maybe he did and he had forgotten in the time when he was human before. Tala was quite sure he was human before. Before the Abbey. But he couldn't remember a time before and sometimes he yearned for memories, something that could piece him together and tell him where he was supposed to be.
Or better yet, tell him who he was.
It was the evenings that Tala liked the best. When the sun reached the pinnacle of the hills, the Abbey’s bells would ring and they would retire for the day. In their shared room, they would collapse and share talk. They always kept their ears open for any kind of information, no matter how trivial it seemed. From personal experience, they knew that nothing in the Abbey was trivial.
Kai laid his feet on the couch and stared at the ceiling, “Who’s going first?”
Bryan sat next to Tala (never too close, just a safe distance away. Bryan acknowledged him, but acknowledgment doesn’t necessarily mean acceptance) and rubbed his hands slightly as he spoke (Tala noticed that all their teammates rubbed their hands after a battle. Is it because they felt the sting of the metal biting into their skin? Tala didn’t understand. Pain was beyond him now), “There’s a new scientist coming here tomorrow.”
“A new scientist?” Spencer looked up in alarm, “What for?”
Tala noticed that all his teammates had looked at each other in fear. He remembered his first encounter with a scientist and wondered why he wasn’t afraid.
“His name?” Ian asked, his eyes flickering towards the door as if he almost expected this scientist to walk through their doors any minute now.
“Nii Jienyi,” Bryan bit the end of the name distastefully.
“Nii Jienyi?” Kai mused thoughtfully, “I’ve heard that name before. Are you sure he’s new?”
“As far as I can tell. I could be wrong,” Bryan said, flipping his beyblade in his hand and wincing when it contacted with the bruised tender flesh, “They were being more secretive than usual,” then Bryan’s cool dispassionate eyes met Tala’s ice-blue, “Tala?”
“I cannot recall him,” Tala said softly, as he scrimmaged through his photographic memory for any recollection or mention of Nii Jienyi, “but I get a bad feeling about this.”
“What would a cyborg know anything about feelings—,” Ian spat out.
“IAN!” Bryan jumped from his seat and glared at the younger boy angrily. Ian froze and turned surly-eyed. Tala just blinked in puzzlement as he stared at Bryan. Kai looked nonchalant, though his eyes (such bright eyes, Tala thought) suggested otherwise and Spencer simply looked the other way.
Ian got up and added this parting sentence before he left, “It’s true you know. Cyborgs aren’t human.”
“No,” Tala spoke, startling all of them, “No, they’re not human. I know that.”
Ian’s lip curled in disgust and he slammed the door while walking out. Bryan sighed while rubbing his forehead in exasperation. Spencer shot up from his seat and stuttered hurriedly, “I’ll-I’ll stop him before he does anything reckless,” He assured them before leaving, his feet belying the nervousness (or was it concern for Ian? Tala couldn’t tell the two emotions apart). Kai sat there, staring at the ceiling in frustration and decided to go out and do more blading.
There was no one left, but Bryan and himself. Tala wondered whether that was Bryan’s intention in the beginning. Bryan sighed and folded his hands in seeming prayer. Tala noticed that there were fresh bruises on his fingers. Tala looked at his own fingers and for a moment, he could spot the glint of metal underneath the flesh. He felt repulsed by it and ignored the action to scratch out his own finger. He gripped his arm tightly and looked at Bryan.
Bryan stared out of the window (nothing but endless snow. It always snowed, the nights are always cold. As if there was a higher deity above who loved to see them suffer. Funny, the god seemed just like Boris and Voltaire. How bitter.
“Because I remembered you from before,” Bryan uttered softly, his breaths coming out of his mouth in little white clouds (a constant reminder of the cold and the ice), “and I…hoped that person could come back again.”
“I don’t remember,” It struck Tala how much he wanted to know. About his life, about the person he was before. His mind was a gaping hole and no matter how hard he tried to fill it, it will forever remain bottomless.
It was a harsh acknowledgment.
“Then he is lost,” Bryan said, getting up. His eyes were cool and Tala wondered if they ever felt warm, whether Bryan ever felt the need to be human. Tala knew he did.
The door clicked and Tala was filled in the empty space of the room. And when night came, Tala was the last one to fall asleep.
And still, there were no dreams.
I really want to pursue this project. And I want to write a Homura/Goku... what to do, what to do...