Matthew's hands shook slightly as he dialed the number
that had been copied onto the piece of paper. He hated the sound
of the phone ringing... he could imagine his brother sitting up and looking
confused, his roommate complaining, the alarm clock getting the initial
blame before finally his brother realized where the ringing was coming
from, and picked up the phone. He sounded irritated when he answered.
"Mark.... it's Matthew." There was a brief pause, then...
"Matthew? What is it? What's wrong? Why are you calling me so early?"
"I'm sorry... I'm sorry. I just had to talk to you."
Mark sighed. "Matthew, it's not even six yet! Why aren't you asleep?"
"I can't sleep! I'm sorry, I couldn't help it! I needed to talk to you!" Matthew winced when he heard how hysterical he sounded.
"Matthew, what do you mean? I've only been gone a week. Has something happened?" Mark's voice had become worried in response to his twin's agitation. "Calm down and tell me what's going on."
"I can't... I can't sleep, I can't concentrate. Even when I do fall asleep I keep having dreams. And I need you! I don't know what to do." Matthew let out a weak whimper. "I'm really tired, but I don't..."
"Matthew... what kind of dreams are you having?" Mark asked gently. "Are you having nightmares or something? Have you told Mom and Dad?"
"They don't know... it's not nightmares... it's just about someone... a girl... you aren't in them." Matthew stumbled over his words. "But I keep feeling... I feel like you're vanishing and I can't feel you anymore! I mean... it's like everything's fading away..."
"Matthew, listen to me, okay? How long have you been awake?" Mark asked.
"I don't know. For a while, I guess." Matthew muttered, trying to remember.
"I want you to go lay down and rest for a while, okay? You don't have to fall asleep, but try to relax, okay? Then... then when Mom and Dad are up, you need to tell them about what's been happening. All right?"
"All right." Matthew said softly.
"And try to remember what you've been dreaming about. Maybe keep a notebook and try writing it down when you wake up, in case you forget later on. Okay? Will you do that?"
"I'll do that." Matthew's voice remained quiet.
"Thank you, Matthew." Mark sighed. "I'm going to let you go now. Promise you'll try to get some rest?"
"I said I would." Matthew was a little offended at the question.
"All right. Thank you. Sleep well, okay? Goodbye."
The phone hung up. Matthew stared at it for a minute, when the thought that he was unbearably tired hit him. He dropped the phone, and sat back on his bed, staring at the ceiling. It was as though he had been stretched unbearably in the last few days, and his brother's voice had released him. Closing his eyes, he immediately fell into a deep sleep.
I need you! Don't you understand that?!
I love you. I love you. Please don't hurt me. Please help me.
Yui looked around in confusion. "Where are you? I can't find you! It's too dark, I can't see!"
I need you.
"Who are you?" Yui squinted to see through the blackness surrounding her. "Suboshi?"
"I'll help you if I can find you." Yui promised, stepping forward. The darkness swirled away from her, allowing her a tiny path of light. "Don't worry."
I can't live without you.
"Who are you?" Yui asked again, trying to chase the darkness away and to find the source of the pleading voice.
You abandoned me!
"Tell me who you are!" Yui begged. She began running, casting about desperately for anything other than the dark shadows around her. "Tell me where you are!"
Why won't you listen to me?!
"I'm listening!" Yui cried. She thought she saw the vague outline of a figure up ahead. She ran faster, trying to reach out for it, when the darkness solidified around her, tendrils pulling her back from the person. She tried screaming, to help them hear her and know she was there, but they didn't turn. The darkness wrapped around her fully and she no longer heard anything.
"Tetsuya..." Keisuke looked at his friend in worry.
"You need to go home and rest. You haven't slept at all, have you?
"I need to stay here in case there's any change." Tetsuya answered numbly. He shifted a little in the uncomfortable hospital seat.
"Come on! She'll be okay. She just cracked a few ribs, you don't have to act like she's dead or anything." Keisuke tried smiling encouragingly, but Tetsuya didn't seem to notice.
"You heard the doctor. She hit her head. There might be damage." Tetsuya said quietly. "I need to be here if she wakes up."
"Onii-chan! Tetsuya-san!" The door flung open and Miaka stepped inside. "How is she? Is she any better?"
"No, she's not." Tetsuya said flatly. Keisuke cast him a worried look, then smiled at Miaka.
"Well, Miaka, these things take time, and the doctors are taking good care of Yui-chan. Just because she didn't get better overnight doesn't mean we should give up hope. Right?"
"Right..." Miaka walked over to her friend, taking the seat beside Tetsuya. "Poor Yui-chan..."
"Poor Yui-chan?" Tetsuya suddenly turned to her and snapped. "She was with you! Why didn't you warn her?!"
"I tried to!" Miaka's eyes welled up with tears. "I did try to warn her. She was... she was upset and she didn't hear me in time."
"It isn't Miaka's fault... and it isn't Yui-chan's fault either." Keisuke said softly. "It's just an accident. These things happen."
"She hasn't been sleeping, she hasn't been eating... why did I let her go out at all? She probably got dizzy or confused, and..." Tetsuya buried his head in his hands. "What if she doesn't wake up?"
"Yui-chan is going to wake up!" Miaka said firmly. "I believe in her."
"We all believe in her." Keisuke affirmed. "Tetsuya... you need sleep. You're not going to help Yui-chan by driving yourself crazy."
"But she's..." Tetsuya gestured helplessly to the unconscious figure on the bed.
"We all love Yui-chan." Miaka said softly. "I'll stay with her tonight and you go to sleep, okay?"
"But you're pregnant." Tetsuya protested softly.
"I'll stay." Keisuke offered. Tetsuya gave him a sideways glance.
"You'll probably fall asleep." Tetsuya said with a sardonic smile, but he stood anyway and stretched his legs. "You'll call me if there's any change?"
"Yes, of course." Keisuke answered, relieved. "We'll let you know."
"Good." Tetsuya looked down at Yui one last time, before leaning down and kissing her gently on the forehead. "And as for you... you'd better give them a reason to call me. Okay?"
Miaka smiled. "Now go home and sleep!"
"Right, right." Tetsuya slipped out of the room quietly. Keisuke and Miaka both sighed. Miaka looked back down at her friend.
"Yui-chan... please come back to us."