Disclaimer- Gravitation, once again, isn't mine. The songs this time are "All Eyes On Me", which was written by John Rzeznik and performed by the Goo Goo Dolls and "Total Eclipse of the Heart", which was written by Jim Steinman (there's that name again...) and performed by Bonnie Tyler. Also, I am using the short version of the latter song. That's the radio edit that cut off singing the chorus one last time, but all the important lyrics are still there. I'd be stretching myself to write the long version.
The Life of Shindou Shuichi: A Retrospective in Song
Written by A Guy Named Goo
Act 3: All Eyes On Me/Total Eclipse of the Heart
It had been three days since the "cardiac episode", as the doctors put it. This also meant that Shuichi had been in a coma for ten days now. He'd been moved to a new room since then, at the very end of the hall, because of the large group of people that could sometimes get quite noisy (mostly Hiro, stomping in in a bad mood, yelling at Yuki once again), and because they needed a big room to accomidate all of the flowers and gifts that had been pouring in. Yuki guessed Touma had finally sent out a press release about Shuichi's condition and where he was staying.
Yuki saved his novel. It was finished now. All he had to do was go home and print it, then send it to the publisher. Of course, to do that he had to leave, something he didn't want to do. Maybe he could trust Touma to do it....
Just as he was setting his laptop on the area of a table carefully kept free for such a purpose, the door opened. In walked Hiro, Suguru, Sakano, and K obviously just coming back from something to do with Bad Luck. K had two cups of coffee, and he thrusted one into Yuki's hand as he sat down next to him. Ryuuichi was asleep in the empty bed that Yuki usually used this time.
"He still not up?" K asked, looking at the lump under the covers. The blanket had been pulled up to the man's chin, and all that was visable of him was some unwashed, unkempt, brown-green hair and a bit of the top of a pair of pink rabbit ears.
"He was for a while," Yuki answered as Suguru and Hiro sat down on the other side of the room. "His neck and back have been getting really bad. He couldn't even stand up straight to walk to the bathroom. I think he forgot he was 31 and couldn't sleep anywhere he wanted without paying for it."
"So he laid down?"
"Not by choice. He was crying again. I called the doctor and asked for an aspirin, and when he saw how much pain he was in and that he wouldn't stop crying he gave him a Tylonol 3."
"Right. He didn't even last ten minutes."
The room was quiet again. Finally, Hiro stood up and stretched, before reaching into his pocket and crossing the room to hand Yuki a piece of paper. This was the most cival thing Hiro had done to him since Shuichi had been brought to the hospital.
"What is it?" Yuki asked, unfolding it.
"Touma-san's latest scheme," Suguru answered, sensing that anything Hiro said wouldn't be exactly friendly.
"The press release," Sakano further clearified.
Yuki picked up his glasses from next to his laptop and put them on, reading the paper. "He named the hospital. That explains the sudden outpouring of cards, flowers, and gifts..."
"Keep reading," K urged, obviously having read it himself.
Yuki did so. As soon as finished, he took off his glasses and put them down, along with the paper. "He named the man who hit Shuichi."
"And said where he lives and that he's in this hospital," Suguru confirmed.
"If the man doesn't get so much hate mail that he kills himself, then the fans will do the job for him," Yuki continued, fixing his gold gaze at the cieling and trying to keep a smile from creeping to his lips.
"That was the idea," K said with a nod.
"There's already been two letter bombs found addressed to him," Hiro continued. "And the overwhelming amount of letters and other suspicious-looking packages has forced the post office to hold all of his mail and elect a special task force to sort through it."
The tiniest hint of a smile quirked on Yuki's lips. "That does sound like something Touma would do..."
"Well, look at what he did to Aizawa," Hiro muttered. "I guess there's only so many times you can commit assault with a deadly weapon and get away with it before people see a pattern. At least this way no one can pin anything on him."
Yuki nodded and sipped his coffee, standing and turning to leave the room.
"Where are you going?" Suguru asked.
"Outside. To smoke. I'll be back in a few minutes."
Shuichi stood in the center of the stage. Though he wanted to move, something in his mind told him to stay there as the actor Yuki walked away. As soon as he disappeared into the forboding blackness of the wings, two figures stepped forward: Ryuuichi and Hiro. Looking down, Shuichi saw that his clothes had changed once again, this time to those of the concert where they were the warm-up band for ASK.
The Hiro actor walked over to his place, picking up a guitar that had suddenly appeared there. Looking next to him, the Ryuuichi actor smiled slightly, his eyes hidden beneath the bill of his ball cap.
"Know your lines?" Ryuuichi asked.
Shuichi almost said no, but found himself nodding instead. A microphone had appeared in front of him, and the Ryuuichi actor stepped back until he disappeared into the darkness at the back of the stage.
Suddenly, the curtain flew up. The audience was visable again, only this time, instead of the people he knew sitting in the plush red seats were the nameless fans from that first concert. All of them were screaming for ASK, just as they had that first time. And also, just like what had happened that first time, Shuichi could see Yuki in back. Or, to be accurate, the Yuki actor. Fear gripped him again, and he froze for what had to have been a solid minute.
Suddenly, Ryuuichi's voice broke through the crowd, just as it had the first time, singing the song. Only this time, instead of listening vacantly as he had the first time, lines popped into Shuichi's head.
"This was supposed to be my big break," he said into the microphone. "But I froze. He wasn't supposed to be here. He said that he didn't want to come and that he wouldn't. When I saw him, I couldn't help my. All of the words disappeared, and everything faded. I couldn't remember where I was or what I was supposed to do."
The Ryuuichi actor stepped up onto the stage and stood next to Shuichi, still singing.
"This was also the first time I met my idol, Sakuma Ryuuichi," Shuichi continued. "He saved me that night. Later, people would tell me that it was because he saw himself in me, which made me feel better than they could ever know. Knowing that someone as great as him had saved me and my career when he didn't have to suddenly made me forget what had caused me to freeze. And that was when I sang. With him by my side. And with him in the audience."
The music started too play, and the entire audience was once again darkened so that Shuichi couldn't see them. Only one light, a spotlight, remained fixed on one figure: the actor portraying Yuki. Focusing on him, Shuichi let the words flow out of his mouth.
"Daylight burns your sleepy eyes and/It's hard to see you dreaming/You hide inside yourself and/I wonder what you're thinking/And everything your chasing/It seems to leave you empty," Shuichi sang, looking down at the floor to keep from meeting the eyes of the Yuki actor. Even if it wasn't really him, he still had the same feelings around him.
Suddenly, Ryuuichi joined him at the same microphone for the chorus of the song. Looking up, he met the eyes of the actor portraying his idol and couldn't help but smile.
"And it won't take long to burn/All eyes on me!/Through the nothing that you've learned/All eyes on me!/And the things you choose to be/All eyes on me..."
Shuichi took a step closer to the edge of the stage, first looking at the floor, then at the cieling. He noticed he was singing alone again. "And you just look away!" He glared at the Yuki actor. "It's so hard to be someone/Strung out from today!" He held out his hand, clenching it into a fist. "And don't let your you slip away!"
The music slowed again, and Shuichi found himself walking back to the microphone, staring at the floor and singing. "You drown in deeper oceans/Inventing new religions..." he pushed his hair from his eyes. "They smile and stab my back and/I lie and have to laugh."
Ryuuichi took the microphone from his hand and sang the next part. "And it won't take long to burn!"
He pointed the microphone to Shuichi as he sang "All eyes on me!"
"Through the nothing that you've learned!" Ryuuichi sang.
"All eyes on me!" Shuichi sang out.
"And the things you choose to be!" Ryuuichi finished.
"All eyes on me!" they sang together.
Shuichi walked to the edge of the stage again as the Yuki actor turned around. "They just look away!" He fell to his knees, as if hurt, and stared at the stage. "It's so hard to be someone/Strung from today!" He looked up suddenly. "And don't let your you slip away!"
He suddenly jumped to his feet and pointed at the Yuki actor. "And you hide in your room!" He faced the stage again. "With your lights turned away..." His head snapped up again. "And you move from your tomb/It's all so far from you!"
Shuichi turned away and walked back to the stage. Ryuuichi had disappeared, as had Hiro. He looked out at the audience, and Yuki was also gone. The music finally started to fade out as he stood on the stage, alone and confused.
And then suddenly the curtain dropped with it's menacing thud.
It was later in the evening by the time the others left. Ryuuichi was still deep in his sleep, and Yuki had nothing else to do, having finished his novel, but stare at Shuichi.
He heard the door open and looked up. Touma had just walked in, carrying a paper bag. He closed the door and took off his hat, resting it in a chair, and then walked over to Yuki, handing him the bag.
"What's this?" Yuki asked, opening the bag.
"Food. I know you have been eating here, but even you have to have your limits."
Yuki opened a styrofoam container to find a cheeseburger and some fries. He took a fry, ate it, then put the food in the chair next to him, looking back at Touma, who was standing between Shuichi and Ryuuichi's beds.
"I heard that since the scare a few days ago Ryuuichi-san hasn't been handling himself very well," he said at last, leaning in a bit closer to look at Ryuuichi.
"No. Not at all. I think he's having a nervous breakdown," Yuki confirmed.
"Hm. I'm really not at all surprised," Touma said softly. He turned and looked at Yuki again. "I don't think that he's acting this way because he's scared for Shuichi. I mean, that's not the only reason, anyway. I think this incident has hit him a bit too close to home."
"What do you mean by that?" Yuki asked.
"You know how alike they are," Touma explained. "Seeing Shuichi like this has made his rethink his own mortality. It could just as easily be him in that bed over there. I shudder to think how he'll react if Shuichi doesn't pull through."
"Has he always been like this?" Yuki asked softly.
Touma shook his head. "We'd been touring with Grasper for about two years. I don't know what happened- if it can really be narrowed down to a single event- but one day he started acting like this." Touma sighed and sat in a chair on the other side of the room, next to the chair where he'd placed his hat. "Ryuuichi-san is a brilliant man. You can't deny that. Shuichi actually pretty wise in choosing someone so talented and hard working as a person to model himself after, even if it's unlikely he'll ever be able to match him. But that kind of talent always has a price. He sees things differently than you or I. And he feels things differently. He had to do something or he would have suffered from a breakdown, whether it be from the stress of working with the band or having to deal with something happening to him. So he did what he thought was logical: he regressed. It's a defense mechanism. He knows precisely what he's doing. If he acts and thinks like a child, then suddenly things aren't as overwhelming to him. But then something like this happens...."
"Children don't handle seeing people they care about hurt and possbily dying very well," Yuki observed, understanding.
"Exactly. Intellectually, he's analyzed the situation and understands the full impact. But emotionally, he shows it the only way he can show any emotion: like a child," Touma confirmed. "I think you'd find that while your methods for hiding yourselves are different, you and him are actually quite a bit alike, Eiri-san. You close yourself off to the world, don't let them see weakness. But he acts like nothing is wrong and people assume that there really is nothing wrong. As I said before, me might seem like he's mentally disturbed, but deep down he knows what he is doing."
"I don't think we're that much alike," Yuki muttered, taking a bit out of the cheeseburger.
"So how are you holding up, Eiri-san?" Touma asked as soon as Yuki had finished swallowing.
"Why do you ask that? You've seen me sitting here, writing. I'd say I'm holding up pretty damn well," Yuki muttered angrilly.
Touma smiled slightly, sadly. "On the outside, yes. But then, it can be expected. You don't show your emotions. You wouldn't be sitting here if this honestly didn't have any impact on you. And judging by your constant vigil, I'd say there's more than just concern keeping you here. Something like guilt."
Yuki put down the burger. "Guilt for what?"
"I saw the reports. The whitnesses said he got hit buying cigarettes. Since he doesn't smoke, and since I like to think I know you quite well, I'd assume you feel at least partially responsible."
Yuki leaned back in the chair and sighed, closing his eyes. "This was my fault. He didn't even have to go that way. But he knew I'd get pissed off at him if he didn't get me my cigarettes. I always get pissed at him."
"Eiri-san, none of this is your fault," Touma told him firmly. "There's only one person responsible for this and, as you've probably heard, I've made sure he gets properly punished. That man would have hit someone eventually, as unfortunate as that is, and it's even more unfortunate- for us and him- that he hit Shuichi. What Shuichi was doing at the time has nothing to do with him getting hit or that man hitting him. The only good that comes out of this is that he will get the punishment that he deserves now. Is it possible that this wouldn't have happened if you hadn't told him to get you cigarettes? Perhaps. Is it possible that this wouldn't have happened if Shuichi hadn't gone out at all that day? That's even more likely. You didn't ask him to get you cigarettes with the intention of getting him hurt, and that's what matters. Had you intended for him to get hit, yes, it would be your fault, but it wasn't. You can point fingers all day: it's your fault for telling him to get cigarettes. It's his fault for deciding to leave the house. It's my fault for signing him to NG and causing him to write the lyrics that you found that caused him to meet you. It's Ryuuichi's fault for inspiring him to become a rock star in the first place. It's his mother's fault for bringing him into a world where people drive drunk. You see how easy it is to blame anyone? As far as I'm concerned only one person is to blame. He is to blame for his blatent disregard for human life, and he is to blame for possibly ending the life of another human being, or at least seriously altering it."
For a long time no one spoke. Only the sound of the life support system could be heard in the room.
"That's not really why I feel guilty," Yuki said at last. Touma didn't say anything, inviting Yuki to go on. "The last thing I said to him was I was scolding him for wearing shoes in the house. Just before that I was ordering him to buy me cigarettes and give me back my change when he's done. And before then I was telling him to shut up. That's how things always worked between us. I never once told him how I really felt. Never. Every time he tried to force me to, I'd kick him out. I told him that we could be lovers, and I told the world that we were together, but that doesn't change that I never once told him how I felt about him. He slept on the couch, for chrissakes. I call that being a lover?"
"Just because you didn't tell him how you felt doesn't mean you didn't feel it," Touma said softly. "I think he understood that. Why else would he have stayed with you? Yes, you did and said a lot of things that not even I think you should have to him, but he was still crazy about you for whatever reason, and I think that reason was that he knew that deep down inside you felt the same way."
Touma stood and stretched, then looked at the food he had brought. "Go home, Eiri-san. I'll stay here tonight. A shower, a change of clothes, and a nap in your own bed will make you feel better. If anything happens- anything at all- I'll call you. If he wakes up, I'll explain why you're not here and that you had been almost the entire time." He looked over at Ryuuichi. "Maybe when the medication wears off and he has to be sedated again I can convince K to bring him back home. That way when he wakes up K can refuse to bring him back here unless he showers and changes his clothes, also."
Yuki wanted to object, but he knew that he couldn't. He hadn't showered or changed his clothes the entire time he'd been here in the hospital, and he knew he probably didn't look or smell too pleasent at the moment. Standing and picking up his laptop, he left with room without saying another word to Touma.
Shuichi looked around the theatre. Everything was black now. The stage had turned dark, he couldn't see the audience, and there was no one around him. A sense of fear began to fill him. What if the show was over, and he'd failed somehow? What if he had actually died for real?
Suddenly, a spotlight came on. It was focused on a microphone, resting on the stage. Hestitantly, Shuichi kneeled down and picked it up. Suddenly, the spotlight on it disappeared, and another focused on him. Ordinarilly it would have hurt his eyes, but he noticed that he felt no pain in this place. He also should have felt worn, and his voice should have been getting tired, but neither of those things was happening.
Swallowing, Shuichi closed his eyes a slightly. There were words in his head, and he tried to fight them back, hoping it would end the reinactment, but no luck. Something else guided his voice when he wouldn't do it himself.
"Even after he saw me sing, he was still so cold to me," he said softly, his voice amplified in the microphone. "But there was something in him after that night. He actually told me something that made me feel secure about my career. We made love again, for the second time in my entire life. And then...then I was so confused. I moved into his house, and he tried to throw me out, only to concede in the end. But he still acted...so cold toward me. I wasn't sure how he felt about me..."
Shuichi dropped the microphone and turned around. The lights switched on, but they were dim, like at night. The set looked like Yuki's living room, and standing in the center of the room was the Yuki actor. A solemn piano melody began to play as Shuichi turned away from Yuki.
"Turn around..." Yuki sang softly.
Shuichi didn't, though. Instead, he began to sing himself. "Every now and then I get a little bit lonely/And your never coming 'round..."
"Turn around..." Yuki sang again.
Shuichi swallowed, remaining back-to the other man, eyes fixed on the mock hardwood floor of the stage. "Every now and then I get a little bit tired/Of listening to the sound of my tears..."
"Turn around..." Yuki sand once more.
Shuichi shook his head at that, surprised that he could feel real tears welling in his eyes. His voice started to get a little louder, a little shakier. "Every now and then I get a little bit nervous/That the best of all the years have gone by..."
"Turn around," the voice was getting more forceful now. It was getting harder for Shuichi to ignore the command.
But he did, balling his hands into fists. "Every now and then I get a little bit terrified/And then I see the look in your eyes-"
"Turn around, bright eyes!" Yuki sang before Shuichi could even finish. The command sounded different now, though Shuichi couldn't tell what had changed.
Tears slid down Shuichi's cheeks now. '"Every now and then I fall apart!"
"Turn around, bright eyes!" Yuki sang out again.
Shuichi found himself doing so as he sang the next line, and the music picked up. "Every now and then I fall apart-"
He threw himself at Yuki, trying to keep from sobbing as he sang out. "And I need to know tonight/And I need you more than ever/And if you only hold me tight/We'll be holding on forever-" The Yuki actor pushed him back gently, and he kept singing. "And we'll only be making it right!/'Cause we'll never be wrong!"
He backed up, looking the Yuki actor straight in the eye. He took his hand and he sang. "Together he can take it to the end of the line-" Yuki shook his hand away. Shuichi turned away and began to walk away. "Your love is like a shadow on me all of the time!"
"I don't know what to do/And I'm always in the dark!" Shuichi sang out, knocking a lamp off a table as the cymbals of a drum crashed. "We're living in a powder keg/And giving off sparks!"
Shuichi turned around and threw himself at Yuki again. "I really need you tonight!/Forever's gonna start tonight! Forever's gonna start tonight!"
Yuki cast Shuichi away, and he dropped to his knees, holding himself up on his arms, his tears falling to the floor.
"Once upon a time I was falling in love/But now I'm only falling apart-" Shuichi brushed a tear away. "Nothing I can do, the total eclipse of the heart." He sat up, leaning back on his heels, as a piano solo played. "Once upon a time there was light in my life/But now there's only love in the dark/There's nothing I can say/A total eclipse of the heart..."
Shuichi pulled himself to his feet, knocking over another lamp. He looked at his hand to see it was bleeding, but he felt no pain. The the words that Yuki sang echoed through the theatre, coming from an entire chorus of people.
"Turn around, bright eyes!"
"Every now and then I fall apart!" Shuichi sang in response.
"Turn around, bright eyes!"
"Every now and then I fall apart-" He once again threw himself at Yuki. "And I need to know tonight!/And I need you more than ever!" He embraced him tightly. "And if you'd only hold me tight/We'd be holding on forever!/And we'll only be making it right/'Cause we can never be wrong!"
Shuichi released his grip on Yuki a bit and backed up, still singing. "Together we can take it to the end of the line/'Cause like a shadow only all of the time!"
He turned around and began to walk away, flailing his arms angrilly with the song. "I don't know what to do/I'm always in the dark/We're livinging in a powder keg and giving off sparks!"
He suddenly turning to Yuki, hurt and longing and anger in his eyes. "I really need you tonight!/Forever's gonna start tonight! Forever's gonna start tonight..."
As he sang that last line, he found himself falling to his knees again, crying again. "Once upon a time I was falling in love/But now I'm only falling apart..." He looked up at Yuki, staring into those cold golden eyes. "There's nothing I can do, the total eclipse of the heart." Shuichi pulled himself to his feet, walking over to Yuki. "Once upon a time there was light in my life/But now there's only love in the dark..." He embraced Yuki. "There's nothing I can say/The total eclipse of the heart..." He buried his face in his chest. "A total eclipse of the heart.../A total eclipse of the heart..."
"Turn around, bright eyes..." Yuki's voice whispered.
Then the curtain dropped with it's thud, and Shuichi opened his eyes to find he was holding no one, and that the set had disappeared.
"Wh-what?" he stammered, stepping back.
"It's time for act four," Hiro's voice said from no where, cutting through the silence.
~End of Act 3~
Final Note- I am not sure what scene to do next. If you have any suggestions, feel free to give them. Also, if you know of a song that would go well with this fic, tell me about it. No garentees I'll use it, though, since I have the soundtrack almost all planned out.