Muzukashii Uta

Part two

 

 

"Now...where are they?"

"Over there," the identical boy pointed. "I'd recognize that hair anywhere."

Said blue hair began to bob up and down as it's owner jumped and waved franticly to get his friends' attention. "Over here! Over here!"

Fighting through the crowd of excited fans, both male and female, the twins made their way to where Chichiri, Mitsukake, and Chiriko stood, conveniently right next to the stage. Their tickets had been for general admission, which meant they didn't have a specific seat, but instead had to stand on the main floor. Of course, this was their preferred way of concert going, seeing as their masked friend always managed, somehow, to get a spot up front. They were young enough to stand for a few hours, and Suboshi loved having to opportunity to go mosh-pitting if he felt the urge.

"One of these days you have to tell me your trade secret of getting to the front of the stage," Amiboshi smiled at his friend after dodging a large man in a red plaid jacket. [1]

Together, they made a rather good-looking group. Chichiri wore his nice green pants and a white shirt with his favorite blue denim jacket. A strand of beads, ones that much resembled those his favorite TNT performer always wore, were around his neck.

The tall Mitsukake, wearing white pants, white shirt, and high black boots with a long violet-trimmed yellow coat (also having thrown on a matching yellow/violet headband set), hovered protectively over his little brother, who was clad in cute overalls and a greenish-blue jacket. Both nodded and smiled, greeting the pair who'd just joined them.

Just for fun, and because it was a special occasion, the twins actually dressed in matching outfits consisting of dark blue jeans and tee shirt. The only difference was where Amiboshi wore a nice purple vest with the outfit, Suboshi's matching vest was a bright orange color. [2]

Altogether, the group was stunning, sure to catch the eye of anyone who might be looking. They talked excitedly together for a while, anxiously waiting for the concert to begin. As they chatted, Chichiri noticed a striking young man being pushed around, looking lost and a little scared in the enormous crowd of people. His heart went out to the unknown youth, but his attention was distracted when Suboshi began asking about his beaded necklace, and the stranger was soon forgotten.

 

***************

 

Hotohori was way overwhelmed. He'd been to concerts before, sort of, but this was nothing like the orchestra performances he'd attended. All these people! And the noise! It seemed everyone in the stadium must have been talking at once, louder and louder to be heard over the other people talking louder and louder to be heard over everyone else. And more crowded than even the grand ball thrown for his birthday (of course, the fact that only the most elite of families were invited may have had something to do with that).

Clad in white dress pants and shirt with an expensive red trench coat, his long hair tied back fashionably in a loose tail, the noble youth made his way toward the stage. He wanted a good look at what was popular in society, and hoped this band could teach him what he needed to know to fit in. As he neared his destination, close to a group of good-looking teens about his own age, he was shoved from behind. The force of the push knocked him off balance and the normally graceful young man found himself crashing into one of the nearby teens. Very ungracefully, he and the other boy toppled to the ground in a heap of limbs.

"I'm sorry!" Hotohori clambered off his unintended victim, trying to remain looking as sophisticated as possible. "I was pushed from behind and...." It was then that he looked up into the face of the person he'd knocked over, his attention first drawn to the large scar that crossed the other's face, which only enhanced to mysterious beauty of the boy. He was breathtaking. "I'm...sorry."

"It's alright," Chichiri smiled. "The crowds here can get a little rowdy." He picked up his mask from where it landed, having been knocked off during the collision, and brought it to his face, pressing and smoothing it out, effectively covering the scar. He once again looked like a normal, smiling teenager.

'A mask? But...he's so beautiful.' Hotohori didn't give voice to his thoughts, having more tact than that, but his face became a bit heated, and he was grateful for the poor lighting in the stadium that covered his blush.

As they picked themselves up and brushed the dirt off, Chichiri realized this was the same young man he'd seen before, and it appeared he didn't have any companions. That was no way to attend a concert! He made the decision to change the other's situation, and extended his hand. "I'm Chichiri."

"Sai.... Hotohori," he returned the handshake.

 

***************

 

"Ready?"

Tasuki slipped on his trademark long black and blue leather coat, then tossed a fanged grin over his shoulder at his teal-haired friend. "I was born ready."

Tamahome stood with his hands on his hips, looking stunning in his knee-high boots, light green pants, and long, red Chinese-style shirt. "Tonight's going to be magical, I can feel it."

"Did you see!?" Nuriko bounced in, wearing a flowing blue and gray silk shirt with tight pants that clung to his strong legs and high-heeled sandals. He linked his arm through Tamahome's and spun him around, giggling excitably. "The crowd is huge! Can you hear them!? This is going to be great!"

The boy's cheerfulness was indeed infectious, and the others couldn't help but laugh and cheer along with him. Forming a small, three-man circle, they clasped hands in a bond of teamwork and friendship.

"We're going to do this!?" Tamahome called out.

"Yeah!"

"Who are we!?"

"TNT!!"

"Yeah!"

"Let's go!"

The group jogged out onto the stage, behind the closed curtain, and took position. When given the signal that the stadium lights were set, they knew it was time to begin. They were ready to do what they did best, and from the roar of the crowd, they knew their audience was more than ready too.

With a gleam in his eye, the fire-haired young man brought the microphone to his lips.

 

***************

 

When the stadium lights dimmed the crowd went nuts. A tidal wave of sound, screams, chants, and cheers crashed over the people who filled the large building. The amount of energy and adrenaline was at an unbelievable level.

"It's starting! It's starting!" Chichiri jumped up and down. He looked toward his new friend, Hotohori, inviting him to join the excitement. "Yeah yeah yeah!" The noble teen just laughed, taken with the happy boy.

As loud as the place already was, it actually managed to get even louder when the band's trademark opening began.

"We are TNT!! Metcha hajike tande!"[3] Tasuki's gruff and beautiful voice sounded throughout the stadium, ringing out of the giant speakers and straight into the hearts of every person there. And as the curtain rose, and the band began singing out their first hit song, the magic that Tamahome sensed was felt by hundreds of people, created by their own love for their favorite idols.

Hotohori was more than overwhelmed by this point. Never in his closed life had he ever witnessed such a spectacle. This was what normal people did? He'd always thought the palace life was supposed to be privileged, but this was more than he'd ever hoped for. The room was hot, filled with love; vastly different than the cold elite parties and balls he'd always had to attend. These common people were happier than he could have ever hoped to be.

He looked over at Chichiri, amazed that someone with such an obviously hard life could be so ecstatic simply by being near a person he didn't even know. The blue-haired youth's mask had no part in revealing the beautiful smile that lit up his face. And the prince-no-more felt as though he wanted to keep such a smile near him always.

The band was awesome, living perfectly up to their explosive name of 'TNT'. Surely there must have been many hours and days of rehearsal, for not one note was sung off-key, not one dance step was missed or tripped up. They glided across the stage effortlessly; only the sweat that shone in the stage lights giving hint to their hard work.

Nuriko was beautiful, dancing like an angel. His sweet tenor voice sounding like a river to a man dying of thirst. His androgomous looks exciting both male and female members of the audience as he flirted with the world. He glittered like the star he was, for more reasons than the shiny makeup he wore.

Tamahome, cool as always, never once would be caught looking foolish. Always knew the right thing to say and do to drive the crowd wild. When they introduced themselves he whispered his name seductively, making the girls squeal, then moments later was not beyond cracking a joke or two with the others. In a world where too many people were the same, he was refreshingly different.

Tasuki was a fiery ball of pure energy, never once slowing down or showing signs of fatigue. One song after another, dance after dance, he was not to be worn down. His smile never faltered, for here, on stage, he was truly in his element. The true proof was in his voice, powerful like a phantom wolf one moment, then easily softening to a purr the next. He was doing what he was born to do, and could...would...do so forever.

 

This was TNT.

 

The audience had taken to dancing; the people who had seats refused the chairs to stand and jump around, and those with general admission even had a mosh pit going on the main floor, which Suboshi was quick to join. Mitsukake had hefted Chiriko to his shoulders so the young boy could see the band better, while Amiboshi and Hotohori stood nearby. Their feet unconsciously tapped along with the beat of the music.

Chichiri, meanwhile, was standing surprisingly stock still, hands gripping the railing that separated him from his idol. He was in utter awe; the only part of him moving was his eyes, which followed the orange hair and leather coat back and forth across the stage. If he didn't have his mask on, the tears of longing on his cheeks would be painfully obvious.

Hotohori noticed; he caught on to where all the blue-haired boy's attention was. And, for reasons he didn't understand, the knowledge made his heart contract.

When the final notes of the last song were sung, not even the mask could hide Chichiri's tears. The salty drops slipped out from under the edges and plunged to the floor. And he wasn't the only one heartbroken to see it end. A great number of audience members cried, never wanting it to be over. Regardless, the lights faded with the music, the curtain fell with the tears, and the band was gone.

 

***************

 

"It was a good concert."

"Yes...it was."

"Cheer up."

Chichiri looked up, pouting, at his tall best friend. "I didn't want it to end!"

Mitsukake could only laugh at the other boy.

The group was standing around now, waiting for Chiriko and the twins, who'd gone to use the restroom. Chichiri was moping about the concert being over, but he knew it did have to eventually end, and he was still grateful that he got to be there in the first place. Even that was more than he'd ever hoped for.

"Hey, look at that," the blue-haired boy pointed to a hallway off in the corner. There was a chain in front of the entrance, and a 'keep out' sign warning off anyone passing by. "Looks...important." There was a mischievous hint in the teen's voice.

"Yeah, important enough to keep out of." Mitsukake knew what his friend was up to.

Chichiri stood up, grinning, "let's go exploring!"

"That's probably not a good idea...."

"Come on, it'll be fun!"

"We have to wait for the others."

"You wait for the others," he grabbed an unsuspecting Hotohori's wrist and started off towards the forbidden hallway, "we're gonna check it out!" With a sputtering (and slightly blushing) longhaired teen in tow, Chichiri disappeared.

 

And Mitsukake just smiled and shook his head, knowing his friend all too well.

 

***************

 

The happy couple was snuggled together on the couch in the backstage breakroom, oblivious to everyone and everything around them...as they usually were when together.

"Tamahome...."

"Miaka...."

"Tamahome...."

"Miaka...."

"Tamahome...you were wonderful tonight."

"Thank you." He tightened his hold around her, breathing in the scent of her soft hair. "I'm glad you could make it; it means a lot to me to have your support."

"Get a room already!"

The teal-haired young man took a moment out of his snuggling to grab a pillow and throw it at his redheaded partner. "You're just jealous."

The other gave a scowl not too unlike a snarl. "Jealous? Of what?"

"Hey hey!" Nuriko interrupted before a real fight broke out. It wasn't uncommon for the two to tease each other until they ended up brawling on the floor. To change the subject, "did you see that hot guy in the red coat standing near the stage? What a babe!" He was met with a round of sweatdrops.

"Err...sorry, but I don't swing that way," was Tamahome's reply. Not that he minded Nuriko's...preferences, it just wasn't his thing. "Ask Tasuki, he does," said with a smirk.

"Shut up!"

"You're the one who proclaims you hate girls."

"I don't swing any way."

Nuriko rested his hands on his friend's shoulders, smiling apathetically. "Naa, you're just saying that because you don't have anyone." The comforting didn't help any; Tasuki's scowl deepened. "You'll find someone someday...if you lose that hard-ass attitude of yours." ...And deepened even more.

"Forget it," Tasuki said, brushing the other's hands away. "I don't need anyone." He headed towards the door.

"Where are you going?"

Without so much as a glance back, "out for a drink." [4]

 

***************

 

"Do you really think this is alright?"

"Shh!" And then a whispered, "of course it isn't."

"Why are we doing this again?"

"Just out of curiosity."

".... Curiosity killed the cat, you know."

"Meow."

"We're going to die...."

"This way, quick!" The two teens ran out from behind the column they were hiding behind, making their way to another hiding spot a few yards further down the hall they were trespassing into. Hotohori was a little uncomfortable sneaking around like this, but he found himself unable to help following his new friend. Chichiri, for his part, wasn't quite sure what he was looking for or what he'd find, he only knew something was telling him this adventure could change his life.

Besides, he was having fun. [5]

They peered around their hiding place, the taller Hotohori's head peeking out above Chichiri's, to which he had to part the long bangs so he could see. When the crash of a door slamming shut sounded they both leapt back behind the column, holding their breath and listening intently for the sound of footsteps.

"Hey, what are you doing here!?"

The two looked up to see a rather large man wearing all black with a tee-shirt that said 'security' across the front standing in the hall in the direction from which they'd just came. Caught! Instinctively, they fled, running in the opposite direction.

Or, tried to, anyway.

Shooting out from behind their hiding spot, Chichiri slammed into another being and was knocked backwards. As the back of his head hit the stone column that was once his refuge, the last thing that registered was pain and a flash of orange. Then his world went black....

 

***************

 

There was a drowsy feeling as his body considered waking up, then decided it didn't really want to. It wasn't until he felt someone slapping his face repeatedly that he finally gave a sound of annoyance and opened his one good eye. Knowing he was in the presence of close friends, he didn't worry too much that his mask wasn't where it was supposed to be. When he saw bright blue eyes and brownish colored hair he closed his eye again. "Go away."

"Wakey wakey!" Suboshi called out as he resumed slapping his friend's cheeks.

"Ok, ok!" Chichiri sat up, pushing the other lightly in the shoulder, "I'm up already." As he rubbed the sore spot on the back of his skull he looked around, taking in the unknown surroundings. His eye widened visibly when he noticed the familiar, yet strange people that sat around the room with the rest of his friends.

"Are you alright?" Hotohori asked softly. He couldn't help but feel guilty, having been the one with the blue-haired teen at the time. He felt he should have protected the other somehow, or even stopped him from going in the first place.

"Just a little sore, but..." he blinked and squinted at the new people. "I think I'm hallucinating. I can swear there are TNT members sitting around this room."

To that everyone smirked, giggled, and/or laughed.

Chichiri's heart pounded as a certain redhead stood up and walked over to him. "I'm sorry," that oh-so-familiar voice spoke, "it's my fault ya got hurt. I wasn't watching where I was going." The injured youth just stared, unsure if the vision before him was real or not. Then a hand was extended to him, "I'm Tasuki." Slowly he took the hand and, in something of a daze, shook it.

Then it hit him...this was real.

He pulled his hand back, as though he'd been burned, and started rummaging around, searching franticly. "My mask! Where's my mask!?" Quietly, and a bit reluctantly, Hotohori handed the false-face over. "Thank you...." he quickly put it in it's place, then smiled up at the room, not noticing (or not letting on if noticed) the slight sadness in everyone's eyes. Though most of them were used to it by now, no one could help but feel bad at the pain the scar caused their friend.

"It's my fault," he said, now feeling comfortable enough to look his idol in the eye. "I'm the one who wasn't watching where I was going. I shouldn't have even been there in the first place. Can you forgive me?"

"Iya," Tasuki said with that accent he was known for, "there's nothing to forgi-"

"Please," the other interrupted. "It would make me feel a lot better...."

Noticing Mitsukake's 'just do it' gesture out of the corner of his eye, the flame-haired youth, though not exactly understanding, gave in. "Alright, alright. I forgive ya."

"Thank you."

Neither of them saw Nuriko elbowing Tamahome in the background, hinting at...something, to which the latter pushed away and rubbed his now bruised ribs.

"I'm Chichiri," the teen continued brightly. "It's quite a pleasure to meet you; I never dreamed I'd have an opportunity like this." He spoke calmly and cheerfully, as was his personality, though the thoughts running in his head were quite different. 'I'm sitting in the same room as TNT! I'm talking to Tasuki!! What do I say!?! What do I do!?!'

There were introductions, with Chichiri ecstatic to meet his favorite band, and get the inside scoop about Tamahome’s upcoming marriage. Nuriko, little by little, moved so he ended up sitting right next to Hotohori, his babe in the long red coat, and not-so-subtly spent the time flirting. Unfortunately for him, Hotohori was a bit distracted, watching Chichiri watching Tasuki, to pay too much attention. He was polite enough, as was breed into him, but wasn’t as into his admirer as the idol wished.

Everyone got along great, and found themselves chatting away. The students fired question after question at the singers about their career, what it was like to be super famous, rumors that were going around, and their lives in general. It was their own personal interview with TNT. The band answered honestly and even asked the others questions of their own, about school, home, and other aspects of a normal life. Of course, there was also a lot of joking and playing around; all in all, they had a very fun time.

It was when Chiriko, who was sitting in the child-loving Tamahome's lap, started nodding off that the group realized just how far along the night had come. It wasn't that they had to worry about school, it being a weekend, but the teens did still have to walk home, and they were all a bit tired from the concert that was what seemed to be hours ago.

The parting was almost sad. For one person in particular, but none of the teens really wanted to leave the presence of their favorite idols, and the stars didn't want to see the few who've ever talked with them like normal people (as opposed to the usual fangirls who just ogled and glomped) leave. They walked together to the backstage doors and then, with smiles all around, the two groups separated.

 

***************

 

There was an uncharacteristic bit of fidgeting on the noble youth's part, never having been in this situation before. The group of teens had slowly dwindled, first losing Mitsukake and Chiriko, then Suboshi and Amiboshi, as each residence was reached. Now Hotohori and Chichiri were alone, standing on the blue-haired boy's doorstep. "Well...it was nice meeting you."

"Yeah, you too. And you've got my number; feel free to call anytime."

"I'll do that...."

They regarded each other for a moment before Chichiri smiled and said "well, goodnight," giving a slight wave.

"Goodnight," Hotohori returned the farewell, then began walking down the stone path leading back to the street. He stopped once to turn and glance back, but the other had already slipped into the house.

 

He didn't even hear the door open or close.

 

to be continued....

 

notes:

[1] Just in case you're wondering...yes, I did once have a problem with a 6˝' tall person standing in front of me at a concert. All me and my 4'9" self could see for a short period of time was that red plaid jacket.... (I'm now scarred for life... <jk>)

[2] In case nobody caught on...I attempted to make their outfits a modern-style version of the clothes they wore in the series. Attempted being the key word....

[3] ::laughs:: I just had to do it.... Yes, this whole story is going to be a pun on THTC.  ^^*

[4] Ooh.... Tasuki is angsty when he's lonely...not that he'd ever admit it.

[5] It's occurred to me that when I'm not sure what to do with Chichiri's personality in a situation I always subconsciously end up making him very fox-like.... ^^*