Where are you my friend?

Prologue

I told you that I wanted us to be together…always.

You told me that a situation like that was impossible.

I told you, that it was and I would definitely find you when we're older.

You smiled at me, placing a hand on my shoulder.

"Life isn't that neat," you told me. Your black hair, your face seemed like it was about to cry.

"Why are you sad?" I asked. "Why?"

You told me…

"Goodbye," you whispered your words soft, yet strong. I looked at you, reaching out to you, waiting for you to grab that hand.

"Goodbye," you whispered again.

"Don't go…" I screamed.

I told you that we would always be together.

But you told me…that life wasn't that neat…that everything wasn't that beautiful.

I was the dreamer…you were the realist…we made the most unlikely pair of friends…but we were friends.

"Where are you now Mizuki," I whispered.

Your name like mist disappearing into the sky.

~scene 1~

Densha/Machi

There were different colours to represent different people. White, blue, green, red, purple, yellow, orange, black, pink…so many different colours…and as I sat in the rumbling train I couldn't help but notice the characters.

"Green," I muttered, watching a woman eating an apple, nibbling it gently and looking out of the window. Like a tree in the suburb train. A vegetarian? Nobody eat apples for breakfast. I peered at her with intense curiosity.

In my imagination, the woman was standing still in a large field. Surrounded by tall wild grass, she stood tall and proud, strong and sturdy. Apples grew from her face, leaves sprouted from her hair.

"I am the tree woman," she spoke. Above her in the blue sky, the sun smiled at her.

I chuckled then blushed when the woman stared back at me.

I turned away.

"Stop it," a voice scolded myself in my head. "Stop making people look weird."

A part of me wishes for the woman to become tree woman, however, right now…that was not possible.

"Weirdo," I scolded myself and let my eyes feast on the train's dreary grey floors.

My name was Kisumu Kisa; I liked to call myself Kiss, an English surname. It sounded nicer and it gave a romantic feel to my name. My mother used to scold me.

"Do you even know what Kiss means!" she would nag.

Of course I knew what kiss meant! I would reply. It meant…

The meaning of it was lost to me. I knew nothing of English and I'm sorry Japanese was my only language. However, Kiss sounded like a good nickname and ever since I was eleven, that name stuck.

The train rumbled to a stop, an announcer announced the train station and I popped out of my seat and out of the train's sliding doors. Concrete floors greeted me and suddenly I found myself surrounded by people.

Colours flooded my senses and I smiled.

"Blue," I whispered, watching a school boy racing down the steps of the train station. He was late, his blue hat bounced off his head and he caught it as he ran out of the train's station entrance.

A lady holding an overly large cat was arguing with the station master.

"Why can't pets be allowed in! It's an animal! Humans are animals too!"

The station master stood tall and straight, shaking his head sternly.

I chuckled at the scene.

Totoro was arguing with a wooden puppet.

"Why can't I enter the ticket building?" Totoro rages. The wooden puppet opened it mouth and shook its head, making creaking noises. Rules are rules it seemed to say.

"For a puppet has no heart and no human emotion," a narrator recites from a corner.

"Hey!" a voice broke my out of my day dream. I drew in a sharp breath as I saw a young boy rubbing his head by my feet. He was in elementary school, no more than 8 years old. He looked at me with accusing eyes.

"Look where you're going old lady!" he shouted.

I blushed and helped him up, offering a hand.

"I…I'm sorry," I whispered.

The boy stared at me, his gaze piercing. I flinched looking away.

"I…I'm sorry," I told him in a small voice and I side stepped him, tapping my card on the ticket counter and moving out of the train station.

I took in a deep breath and sighed. The boy's intense gaze made my head whirl, and hard to breathe. I shook my head. Be strong, Kisa, I told myself.

I looked up and found myself looking at a flurry of office people. Dressed in suits, carrying briefcases and handbags, they walked in a fast orderly pace.

"Black," I whispered.

A city of robots marched into tall rectangular buildings. They moved slowly, deliberately. "You're late!" a conductor instructed a robot, who quickly loosened a few screws.

"I am sorry," it said in a mechanical voice.

"You must go for maintenance," the conductor said and the robot obeyed.

"Clip-clop, clip-clop," I muttered happily, feeling my leather school shoes hitting the pavements where the robots walked.

"Kisa," a voice from long gone appeared in my head, like steam filling up a kettle pot. The voice filled me with nostalgia made me stop in my tracks.

I looked up.

Through the tall sky scrapers, the sky peeked through its narrow cracks. The clouds gone, hidden behind the rectangular blocks.

"Kisa," the voice whispered again.

"Mizuki," I muttered.

"What would happen if the world was flat?" I had asked Mizuki on a summer's day a few years back. It was the holidays and it was a hot, hot day. Fires scorched the dirt path we walked on.

"If the world was flat? Huh?" Mizuki had answered, flapping her shirt.

"Well, the world is round right…what would happen if it were flat?"

"Firstly, why the hell are you asking such a question on such a hot day?" Mizuki asked me. Her brown chestnut eyes looked at mine and she sighed when I smiled.

"Just imagine the possibilities!" I yelled excitedly. "We could travel to the North Pole in minutes."

"Technically, the world would be destroyed," Mizuki muttered. "Arh is so hot!" she then exclaimed, pointing a middle finger into the sky.

"Mizuki!" I chided, wincing at the middle finger.

"Why?" she asked, "It's hot…the sun needs to die sometimes."

"Hmph, technically the world would be destroyed if the sun dies."

"Ooo…dear Kisa does have some common sense after all."

"I…"

Mizuki silenced me, placing a finger on my lips.

"Ice cream, in times like these we need ice cream."

I smiled.

"So…" I said as we continued to walk on, "What would happen if the world was flat…?"

Mizuki sighed and she thumped me hard on the back.

"Well, I'm pretty sure I wouldn't be able to meet you if that's the case."

I blushed and Mizuki grinned.

"Embarrassed?"

"N…No!" I exclaimed. Mizuki laughed and she grabs my hand pulling me along.

That day, the roads had been burning up in fires. The world had been flat, the sky revolved around the epicentre…the Earth.

Mizuki and I ran on flat ground. We were friends, enjoying summer on this world.

That scene faded away, the voice in my head diminishing. The narrow sky in between the sky scraper, so blue…it seemed surreal.

"I live in the real world," I told myself.

Stretching out my hands, tears rolled down my eyes.

"But what is real…hey…answer me…Mizuki."

The tree woman stood beneath the sun, strong and tall, strong and proud.

"I am the tree woman," she said. A lone girl stood beneath her, her leaves providing the girl with shelter from the scorching sun.

"Won't you burn?" the girl asked the tree woman. The tree woman smiled at the girl.

"No…not when my leaves are intact…they are my heart you know," the tree woman answered. The girl smiled.

"So…what would happen if I plucked those leaves?"

"Then my heart would die," the tree woman answered.

The girl chuckled at the very idea.

"I won't do it…I won't do it…" she whispered.