Y o u r S i n


-January 2005; One Year Ago-

I remember, the water was very cold... It ran steadily down my body, a body that should have probably cremated and buried a long time ago—but here it was, still intact, keeping this Hayashi Ryuutarou hostage in this world.

I stepped out, turning off the water as I did so. A ran a towel over my body and through my now shoulder length black hair.

My reflection in the mirror was foggy, even after wiping the condensation away with my palm. It wouldn't do me any good anyway; my reflection was always the same—no matter what I did.

At least I had a job to keep my sanity in check—work distracted me from everyday life. Music kept my head on my shoulders. Today would be my first day back to the company in a year. Only minutes after I had left my apartment, I found myself staring at the silver plate which read 'X Records Company Japan Branch' in its engraving. My mind almost wanted to flash back to 1997—the year I first laid eyes on the same engraving... but memories have a habit of making me unstable. I walked in.

"Ryuutarou, am I glad to see you," Yasu smiled, "You got my letter then? You going to sign on?"

"What choice do I have?" I replied.

"Meet Inohiko—our new rhythm guitarist."

I glanced over to the high school kid sitting in Yasu's office. He sat nervously, but calm—his short haircut was a common sight around Tokyo these days, long bangs on one side, shorter cut on the other—but something caused his appearance to be different than all of those other people... His eyes probably, they looked tired, exhausted, and distressed, even. If his case was anything like mine then, he was probably kicked out of his house when he decided to join a rock group.

"Sign here," Yasu said. "I could use your ears in the studio, Ryuutarou—I'm trying to get another band off the ground."

"You probably don't have a bass guitarist for this band yet do you?" I asked.

"You know my luck with that lot," he replied.

"Kenji knows some kid in Yokosuka," I said, "I'll go down there and check it out."

"If he's more insolent than his kid brother, don't bother. I'm not going to settle for a good bassist with a bad temper when we've already got an awesome bassist here with a bad temper."

I nodded and he knew that I understood. Taking one last glance at the kid in the corner, I walked out of Yasu's office and out of the building.

Tokyo... how had I ended up in this city?

In any case, it was enough for now. It was enough to get away from my father and my mother who hated me for what I was doing.

I didn't blame them. I hated me for what I was doing, and for that I decided that I would restart my life. There would be a new Tosaku Inohiko for the world to stare at.

I had been accepted to an American college for drug research, but I didn't go. It would have been hard for me to go with the people that I had surrounded my past in. And for that, my father was angry with me.

Instead I turned to my guitar and started playing on random corners of city streets back home in Osaka. I cut my hair to something that would make me look like everyone else and I bleached it to hide my identity. And for that, my mother was angry with me.

So I ran. I took off with nothing but my guitar and whatever money I could stuff in its case. Before I had realized it I was in Tokyo. And for this, I could probably never face my parents or my brothers again. And for that, I was alone.

The past few weeks had been nothing but empty street corners with me and my guitar and an open case, waiting for the next day. And somehow, I was content with it being just that. Just simple. Away from my home and my past.

But fate had other plans for this Tosaku Inohiko... and it started with a man named Yakuma Kenji.

And now, I found myself sitting in front of the most famous living rock legend in Japan, Matsumoto Yasu'ichirou, who was hiring me, the runaway boy, to be in his new band.

And I went along with it. Maybe this would give my two older brothers something to be jealous of... But then again, both of them were rich and famous doctors, what need did they have to be jealous?

The other guitarist, Hayashi Ryuutarou, whom I had often seen on television and pictures, had just left, leaving Yasu-san and myself alone in the office.

"Relax, Inohiko, you look tense," he said, somehow maintaining a professional look through his smile, "Do you have any living arrangements within the district?"

I shook my head, Yasu-san sighed.

"Where have you been staying?"

"A motel..."

"A motel huh? Well, Ryuutarou's apartment is open for grabs. He's got an extra bedroom and an extra spacious couch, and doesn't charge anything. I suggest you move your stuff into his place until you can find a suitable place for yourself."

"...But... Is it a problem?"

He nodded, "It's fine. Despite Ryuu-kun's cold exterior he can be a real heart of gold sometimes... as long as you don't point it out to him. Do you need to borrow a car to get your stuff?"

I looked over to my guitar case, "That is my stuff..."

"Oh," Yasu-san said looking surprised. "How long have you been in those clothes?"

"I... I washed them... this morning," I replied averting my eyes from any distasteful gaze that might have been coming my way.

"I—I see, well you and Ryuu-kun are about the same size, let's get you some new stuff, shall we?"

I didn't say anything in reply for he had taken my hand and lead me to his car. We drove in silence to where I presumed Hayashi-san resided.

"Ah, Ryuu-kun lives in these gray apartments on the right. They're actually a lot bigger inside than they are on the outside," Yasu-san said as he parked his car in the garage. "He lives on the second floor, third door on the outside balcony."

I looked and counted to try to see which one would be his as we exited Yasu-san's car and we began walking up the stairs of the apartment. I noticed that Yasu had not even bothered to knock on Hayashi-san's door before entering. I hurriedly removed my shoes and followed Yasu in.

"Ojama shimasu!" Yasu called, telling Hayashi-san of our intrusion to his house. "Don't be worried about us barging in. Ryuu-kun doesn't mind."

"As long as you don't call that person 'Ryuu-kun'," both of us turned to see Hayashi-san in the hallway wrapped in a towel and obviously just coming from the shower. I averted my eyes.

"Ah, Ryuutarou, our new Inohiko needs a place to stay," Yasu-san said.

"For how long?"

"Does it matter?" Yasu-san asked, "This is all he's got, so I was hoping you'd fix him up with some new stuff."

"You have the money."

"Well here's my card then, bill everything to me."

"So you expect me to go shopping with him while you—I'm sorry, I didn't catch what you were doing in this situation."

"The studio is being renovated, and well seeing as though I own it, I need to be there not here."

Hayashi-san changed his glance to me, "Put your stuff in that room."

I nodded and took the guitar case from Yasu's side and opened the door that Hayashi-san was pointing to.

I walked in and found an American style king size bed and a television inside. It might not have seemed like much, but it was a far cry from sleeping on futons my whole life or sleeping on that tatami floor back at the motel. I sighed and placed the guitar case down in the corner and walked back out to Yasu-san and Hayashi-san.

"Take a shower and change into something else before we leave," Hayashi-san said.

I looked to Yasu-san. "Uh, Ryuutarou, he's going to have to borrow your clothes."

Hayashi-san sighed before responding, "That's fine. Come, let me get you some stuff."

0 1 : 一 章

-October 2006; Present Day-

I frowned. I woke up with another blinding headache that morning, the third one since the beginning of this week. It was like a bad omen dangling over my head. But it didn't matter; there was work to be done.

I got out of bed and went directly across the hall to the shower, not really caring about the fact that I was ass naked and there were probably other people in my apartment—Inohiko being the known one. It was all part of some daily routine that others went along with.

Minutes later I was knocking on the other bedroom door, trying to wake up Inohiko as I stuffed my fist through my shirt.

"Inohiko! Oi! Get up," I said as I knocked on the door.

He finally opened it, looking pretty dead and drained. As usual he said nothing as he traveled to the bathroom to get ready himself. I went to the piano, which was situated in the back corner of the living area, to try and gather up the lyrics and tablature I had been working on the night before.

To my dismay, they were scattered everywhere on top and beneath the piano. I sighed and began to pick them up and tried to organize them while doing so.

It was just another morning.

Inohiko walked into the living room—his hair was a mess and his clothes were barely on straight. That boy could never wake up. Ever.

"Did you find an apartment yet?" I asked him as he went to the kitchen.

He shook his head 'no' as he found the coffee pot and poured himself a cup.

If I had asked anyone else I would have gotten a 'because,' but talking was another thing that Inohiko was not capable of. And so the rest of our morning was silent, like every other morning that we had seen since he unofficially moved in.

"Let's go," I said as the clock approached seven. "Yasu wants us in earlier today."

He nodded, pouring the rest of the coffee pot into a travel mug and following me out the door.

When we arrived at the studio, I walked over to Yasu and handed him the stack of papers I had collected. "Here. Don't edit them to much or they'll get diluted," I said.

"Have you taught Inohiko how write anything?"

"No," I answered.

"Why not?" Yasu asked, "The guy has got some potential."

I looked over to Inohiko who was sitting on a nearby couch and listening to his music player while finishing the last of his coffee. "He's been busy looking for his own place."

"Is he not satisfied with your place?" Yasu asked.

"You know, some people like to live alone," I replied. "Besides, if he wants a new place, I'm not going to stop him."

"Whatever you say," Yasu said, "Tadashi is here to play bass for us again—he's over there by Dai-kun."

I nodded.

"Let's start off where we left yesterday," Yasu said to the other guys, "Dai-kun, my orange-haired vocalist, you're all set to record."

And that meant the rest of us would just sit here behind the mixing boards and fall asleep... of course that was hard with Niimura's voice blaring through the headphones that I had habitually put on. His voice was loud and deep and very unlike his speaking voice—for which I was happy because he sounded almost like an eight-year-old most of the time.

"He hit a foul note," I said as I nudged Yasu's arm.

Yasu pressed the stop and rewind buttons and signaled for Niimura to start over. I sighed. "I'm going out for a smoke break," I said, despite the fact we had only just started.

"Okay," Yasu nodded and waved me off.

"I'm coming too," Tadashi said as he followed me out of the building and into the ally.

"You have a light?" I asked.

He nodded and handed over his lighter. "Have you guys found anyone to play bass full time yet?"

"Do you want the job?" I asked.

"No, but you guys always seem to call on me—it would make sense if you guys had found someone permanent."

"Yasu is being picky with them again," I replied. "How's you're brother?"

"He's drunk twenty-four-seven, and I don't see him much," he replied. "What about that Inohiko guy? I heard he's staying at your place."

"Temporarily," I shrugged.

"I never thought you'd ever agree to a room mate," Tadashi smirked as he pressed the cigarette to his lips.

"I didn't."

To Be Continued...

Tell me what you think please!