Author Topic: Because of You  (Read 259 times)

Teemeah

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Because of You
« on: April 14, 2017, 09:54:24 PM »
So, I decided to chime in and share this. I plan to continue, and I hope you'll like it, even though it might be a little cheesy at times. :)

BECAUSE OF YOU

Fan fiction
Written by Teemeah
Disclaimer: Everything here is purely the product of my imagination, including the characters that are based on X Japan members. The story might not be accurate as per X Japan's real history, including the members' personality traits.


CHAPTER 1.

Hide was sitting cross-legged at the table, a cigarette in one hand, silently watching as Yoshiki, sitting next to him on the couch, bent over a stack of scores, furiously jotting down notes, crossing them, rewriting, scrapping and starting over a hundred times, his legs restlessly moving to beats only he heard. It was not unusual for him to just get lost in the music in his head when he was scoring, and not pay attention to anything - or anyone for that matter. This was their regular studio downtown, a safe haven, and they were practicing for the upcoming Tokyo Dome gig. It was lunchbreak, and everyone already finished their meal, drinking beer or smoking, with Pata dozing off as usual. Only one person didn't eat. Again.

"Hey," Hide pouted at Yoshiki, but he didn't bother to look up. Hide stubbed out his cigarette and poked the drummer with one finger. He received Yoshiki's signature annoyed glance, followed by a graceful, if a tad arrogant flip of his hand signalling him to fuck off.

"That curry is ice cold already. Not gonna eat?"

No answer came, just the violent sound of graphite scraping on paper. Anything Yoshiki did had a sense of graceful violence to it. Hide sighed and motioned to Toshi to come over and whispered something into his ear. Toshi nodded with a grin and then Hide, fast as lightning, pulled the stack of scores from under Yoshiki's hands and shoved it into still eagerly grinning Toshi's, who turned around and ran for his dear life, long pink hair floating in the air. The screetching scream that left Yoshiki's throat shook Pata awake and Heath, reading a manga, almost choked on his beer. Yoshiki looked delicate and fragile on the outside but all of them knew that once provoked, those fragile qualities could soon turn into something rather frightening. You didn't want to mess with the leader. Unless you were as unfazed, as Hide was, that is. Pata went back to peaceful napping; if anyone could control their leader's violent outbursts, it was Hide. And just so, before Yoshiki could have launched himself after Toshi, the best runner on the team, Hide's arms were already around his waist and pushed him back onto the couch. Long, blond locks flew furiously everywhere as Yoshiki turned around shouting.

"What the fuck are you doing? I have to finish this fucking song!"

"Sure thing. You will. After you finished that bowl,", Hide pointed at the cold curry.

"Fuck you," was all he got as a reply, as Yoshiki rose to get his scores back from Toshi, who went to hide the sheets upon Hide's instructions. Hide pulled him back, gently, but with enough physical force to restrain him.

"Look, you didn't eat anything all day. And yesterday, and the day before. If you get sick right before the year-end live, what are we going to do? If you want to starve, by all means, I don't give a flying shit, but do it AFTER the fucking live. OK?"

Hide never shouted. That was always the scariest. He remained painfully calm and looked like a goddamn angel, with his red hair, beautiful face, and honey-balmed voice. And he was fucking smiling like a kindergarten nanny, pouting at Yoshiki's childish antics as he always did. Yoshiki felt like he could have strangled his lead guitarist, but at the same time, he was not stupid. The message got through, he repressed a gruntle and visibly upset, reached out for the rice bowl. With dramatic, larger-than-life movements, he picked up his chopsticks and flipping his hair behind his shoulders, he took one bite of the curry rice, and then put his bowl down.

"Nah, nah", Hide smiled like a glorified angel, lighting another cigarette. All of them were chain smokers. "All of it".

Heath smirked under his invisible moustache and kept on sipping his beer. Pata's head slipped onto his shoulder and he gently pushed his curly head back. The guitarist gave a loud snort, then curled up on the other side of the couch. Yoshiki flashed an angry I-will-kill-you glance at Hide and quickly shoved the food down. Once the last bite was over, he put the bowl down, as loudly as it was possible.

"Good boy," Hide patted his back, and it took a long, deep sigh for Yoshiki not to aim at scraping Hide's eyes out.
"I don't know what you'd do if I were not here, huh? You'd probably starve to death if I didn't feed you", Hide smiled cheekily, with an eyebrow raised and stuck his tongue out at him. Suddenly all of Yoshiki's fury was gone. He could never seriously be angry with Hide. Not when he was being cheeky.

"I hate you."

Hide smirked, "I love you too, Yo-chan."

That moment, Toshi returned with the scores, only to have Yoshiki immediately launch at him, pulling at his hair. Hide laughed out loud.


The night air was hot and humid, and the wind gently tore at the white curtains as Yoshiki awoke. 3:46 am. The red blinking numbers on his clock painfully reminded him that his insomnia was still very much incurable. For the past 40 years, since his father's death, he had been unable to sleep through even one night. He covered his face with one arm, trying to concentrate on breathing deeply, as the doctor suggested. To no avail, the night breeze had already woken him completely. He rose from the black satin bedsheets and groaned. Tonight, again, he saw Hide in his dream.

For the past few months, past memories visited him every single time he managed to fall asleep, usually centered around Hide. What kind of message is his dead friend trying to convey to him through these images? He desperately tried to understand, to grasp the meaning behind these fiction infused memories. Hide often forced him to eat, when he was concentrating on work, it was like he fell under a spell, forgetting about earthly things like food. And Hide always took care of everyone, like a good mother. But that scene, where Hide took his notes and Toshi ran away with them, never happened. The other day he was standing at Hide's grave in his dream. It was raining really hard, washing away flowers placed on the tombstone, and Hide's photo, standing in the middle, flipped over, the sky darkened, the wind started screaming in his ears and he fell into darkness. That night he woke drenched in sweat. Just the day before, he dreamt of a little boy cheerfully riding a swing, it was a sunny day, with bright sunrays seeping through cherry blossom branches, and Hide was standing a few feet away, leaning against the cherry tree, smiling beautifully, happily watching the child. What is all this? Why now?

After Hide died, for years, he had frightening nightmares and it took him several psyhologists and quite a bit of medication to finally stop those dreams and subdue the urge of following Hide. Why now? Nothing happened in his life that would justify these dreams, psychologically. X Japan was touring, the new album was out and successful, he had several projects going, he was living well. Lonely, as ever, but that was nothing new. He'd been lonely since the moment he was born. He got used to it.

Why was Hide visiting his dreams every night now?
« Last Edit: April 14, 2017, 09:58:07 PM by Teemeah »
X-ed pretty hard on first listen. My first Japanese band and second Japanese music love after Miyavi.

Faramir

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Re: Because of You
« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2017, 11:34:24 PM »
Yay, I'm thrilled to see someone else chiming in with X Japan fic.:) I really enjoyed this opening. For a moment I thought that you were doing a what-if-Hide-had-lived story... too bad it was only a dream. I look forward to the next chapter!

nb

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Re: Because of You
« Reply #2 on: April 15, 2017, 12:41:47 AM »
Great reading. :)

Looking forward to continue reading the next chaptors.

positively unsure。

Teemeah

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Re: Because of You
« Reply #3 on: April 15, 2017, 10:10:47 PM »
Thank you guys. :) Next chapter up!

CHAPTER 2

Yoshiki felt like his head was about to split in two, he took his pills and massaged the bridge of his nose. The tour was about to start and their usual tour manager assigned by the tour company they employed, resigned last minute.

"What do you mean all of your experienced tour staff are unavailable? This is not what we are paying for!", he said with dismay, as he turned around to face the phone set on conference call.

"I understand, but this really came all of a sudden. We can still provide you with a tour manager. Ms Bright has significant experience, just not an a worldwide tour, however..."

"Look, I need someone who is capable to lead a complete entourage to over 30 cities in 4 continents," Yoshiki interrupted the caller impatiently, "You can't just send over someone who has no prior experience in this. Do you understand how incredibly important this tour is? Now where do I get a proper tour manager in less than a week's time?", he was almost shouting. Viktoria, his assistant immediately handed him a bottle of cold water but he dismissed her with a wave of his hand and she silently left the room, leaving him alone with the caller on the other end of the line.

"Yoshiki, we have known each other for a long time. You know I would never do this if I didn't think she was capable. She took 30 Seconds to Mars on an all around US tour this spring, with zero issues. Zero. Can you please trust my judgement of my colleagues? She will arrive to your headquarters in about an hour, let her get familiar with the situation, the tour details and meet your tour staff. If you are still not satisfied with my choice, we will fully compensate your company for whatever amount your lawyers set as damage fee."

Yoshiki fell silent for a moment, contemplating on what he just heard. Did Jin really trust this manager so much as to basically offer him a blank cheque in case he is not satisfied? "Can you give this statement in writing?", he asked on a much lower voice now, and Jin Takahashi, the president of one of the largest entertainment services company in the world laughed out loud. "You'll never change, Yo-chan, right? Sure, I will send it over in email in about an hour, and you'll get the original by DHL this afternoon. Deal?"

Yoshiki leaned back in his leather chair and closed his eyes. She better be as good as Jin thinks she is.


Jess parked in front of Extasy Records and heaved a deep sigh. What Jin told her about Yoshiki Hayashi sounded like she was in for a real celebrity showoff, big time. Having worked in the industry for a decade now, she had seen all sorts of celebrities, outragous behaviours and having a sassy celeb as a boss was nothing new to her. Yet, she somehow felt uncomfortable. When Jin told her he needed her to urgently take over the world tour for a Japanese rock band, she was kind of intrigued, and fascinated. This was a great opportunity for her to enlarge her scope and learn more. Of course, the first step is aéways to check the band out, learn about band history, dynamics, roles and previous tour data. She did her homework, and she also kind of liked this type of music they were doing. She analyzed interviews, and during her 2 hour drive from Santa Barbara, she listened to podcasts. You need to know whom you are dealing with. She was impressed with the records, but also worried about Hayashi. He didn't seem like an easy business partner to work with.

As she was waiting at the reception for the young, blonde, heavily Russian accented model like girl to announce her arrival to the boss on the phone, she was wondering just how this girl got the job. She could have been something like 21 or 22, and the last thing she could imagine of her was experience in office management. Another of Mr Hayashi's assistants, a very young, tall, thin Slavic girl finally appeared and without any trace of a friendly smile, told her drily to follow her to the CEO office. She was wearing 5" heels and a mini skirt. He must have a thing for Slavic models, she concluded, following the girl, whose raven black hair reached below her skinny butt. She must be an awesome assistant, that's a given.

When she entered the office, Yoshiki was still sitting at his table, visibly buried into a Macbook, and didn't even look up when Assistant Number 2 introduced her and then turned around in her 5" stilettos and tiptoed out of the office. For a few seconds, only the sound of keyboard clamping could be heard. Jess cleared her throat and he finally looked up. His eyes narrowed as he examined her from head to toe and then his hair flowed to one shoulder as he tilted his head. Jess' eyebrows slid up. Dude, I'm not a monkey attraction in a zoo!

"Hi! I'm Jess Bright, your new tour manager," she offered her hand in advance firmly. Finally he stood up, and shook her hand. His grasp was surprisingly soft and gentle, and his hand incredibly cold.

"Nice to meet you. Yoshiki Hayashi. Please take a seat", he said, motioning to the couch nearby. His voice almost sounded like veiled whisper, she had to lean in to hear it. He smiled, and to her surprise, when they sat down on the white leather couch, he sat very near, not opposite her, like most clients do. He silently offered her a drink from the coffee table but she politely refused.

"I'm sorry to have kept you waiting. You see, there are a lot of last minute arranegements for the tour", he apologised smiling and Jess finally had some time to examine his face while he poured himself a glass of very expensive mineral water. He looked delicate and fragile, almost too young for his age, and incredibly white skinned. He smelled like sunshine on a green summer meadow, incredibly... magnetic. So that's why people call him a vampire, she nodded to herself. He certainly had that kind of eerie pulling force. She felt a sudden cold shiver running through her spine. He didn't seem to notice his effect on others, or pretended not to, as he turned to her flipping his hair gracefully like in a L'Oreal shampoo ad, sweeping more of his perfume towards her. Theatrics, 10 points.

"I will be honest with you. I know Jin trusts you, and he has long been a reliable partner, but", he sighed dramatically, like an Oscar winning actor, "I need to be convinced", he glanced at her and Jess suddenly thought of the two assistants. She hoped he didn't mean that kind of convincing.

"I understand your frustration with this situation. It's not easy to hand over such a large scale production to someone you have never worked with. That's why I am here today. If you agree, we can start preparations, and you can judge my work yourself. I don't want to offer meaningless words, instead I will show you how I work."

She sounded very confident - and was very confident in herself, but his face was unreadable, not a single muscle moved. Finally, after a few seconds, that seemed like extremely long units of time, he nodded, with a half smile.

"You will report directly to me. I supervise the whole of the tour myself."

Somehow, she was not surprised. Most celebrities would leave everything beyond creative work to employed professionals, but Jin told her in advance, that she should expect Yoshiki to be the contrary. Despite his eerie elegance, lavish clothes and glorious movements, his business sense was no joke. And he was also the type who liked to control his environment. This was apparent from the first moment she stepped in the office. All books neatly arranged in alphabetic order - and by color, the expensive but stylish furniture perfectly matched its owner, who deliberately let her wait and initiate the first handshake, so she would know who the boss is around here. Neat freak, control freak, and probably a narcissist. Jess smiled back at him. This will probably be her most difficult assignment ever.
« Last Edit: April 28, 2017, 07:53:31 AM by Teemeah »
X-ed pretty hard on first listen. My first Japanese band and second Japanese music love after Miyavi.

nb

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Re: Because of You
« Reply #4 on: April 16, 2017, 12:17:51 AM »
thanks again.

maybe i can read every day a new chapter as a good-night story? =)

positively unsure。

Teemeah

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Re: Because of You
« Reply #5 on: April 16, 2017, 10:50:02 AM »
thanks again.

maybe i can read every day a new chapter as a good-night story? =)

I can't promise a chapter every day, but since it is now Easter holidays, I have more time to write. :) Next chapter will be up now. ;)
X-ed pretty hard on first listen. My first Japanese band and second Japanese music love after Miyavi.

Teemeah

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Re: Because of You
« Reply #6 on: April 16, 2017, 11:00:11 AM »
CHAPTER 3

Her meticulous ways of working and attention to small details quickly won the staff over. In less than a week, she was already familiar with everyone, knew everyone by name, and contacted all promoters in every city. Instead of a laptop, she preferred using a tablet, that she could easily carry anywhere, and had all files neatly organized. She was always two steps ahead of everyone, and even dry Viktoria threw her a half smile on the 3rd day, when she asked the assistant if she wanted a cup of coffee. She bet it was not often anyone offered her a coffee in this office. She would sometimes join the band in the studio, where they were practicing, but they were always distant. That was nothing new, artists usually needed a longer time to trust anyone enough to let them a step closer. She remained polite and kept her distance. Every night, exactly at 8 pm, she sent her report over to Yoshiki about her daily accomplishments, but she never received a reply, not even a thank you. On the upside, he didn't criticize her, either. That was actually strange, she expected him to nitpick on every move, but there was nothing. He greeted her politely, with a shy smile, and they talked a few minutes about the tour details, when she had to ask something, but that was all of their communication. And it was strange. If he likes to control everything, why does he let her do things her way and not butt in? Is that some kind of trick he is playing on her?


Yoshiki sat at his table with hands folded under his chin, reading the 5th daily report Jess sent. Exactly at 8 pm, every day. She was consistent, at least. He deliberately never replied, because he wanted to see her reaction. In any case, he couldn't find any mistakes in her reports, and had to admit himself that she was doing her job pretty well. She paid attention to everyone, was organized and firm in her dealings and knew exactly what she was doing. She always asked his opinion before making bigger decisions that exceeded her authority, but never on small stuff. That was actually very promising. Jun called him a day before, asking how he liked the new manager, and he couldn't say anything other than the truth. He liked the way she was working, so he let her do her thing. The real question is how she will fare abroad. Especially in Japan, where English is not the main language of business. Though they always had an interpreter with them, as most staff members they brought from the US didn't speak Japanese, and he liked to work with the same team, who already knew what he expected and didn't have to train new people all the time.

It was again one of those nights he couldn't fall asleep. Everyone was already gone, the office was dark and silent. He decided the best way to not think about sleeping and dreaming was to play, so he walked over to the studio part, that was divided from the office section by soundproof doors. Playing the piano had a tranquilizing effect on his soul, freeing up his mind. There and then, only music existed, no earthly worries, tour schedules or even Hide intruding into his subconscious.


Jess felt really tired. She had to stay late in the office to finish an overseas call with a promoter, and she drank her thousandth cup of coffee already. She hated conducting business calls at night, all alone in the office, so she took her notes and tablet to the rooftop, where the company had a small garden, neatly organized in Japanese style, for employees to relax at, to do the Skype call there. The peaceful garden was actually a nice touch she really liked. And it sort of matched the CEO's erratic and contradictory personality, as well. Someone as strict and workaholic as Yoshiki was, nobody would have thought he actually cared for his employees' well-being. On the other hand, he was an artist with a sensitive nature, which could account for his sense of these things. Two more days, and they embark on a two months long tour, 30 shows around the world.

Jess massaged her stiff neck and heaved a sigh. She packed her stuff and took the stairs down from the rooftop, which led besides the soundproof studio. The lights were on. That was strange, everyone already left the building, except for the security guard, but he was sitting at the gate. She couldn't see through the smoky windows. As she stepped in through the side door, she got curious and with her temporary badge, opened the soundproof doors of the studio. She walked in, following the light seeping from the practice studio. She never actually visited the other, separated recording booths, but she has come to the practice studio before on multiple occassions to watch them for a few minutes. Now only Yoshiki was inside, sitting at the piano, facing the door but he was playing with eyes closed and his head tilted a little upwards, gently moving to the soft melody. It was one of Chopin's Nocturnes. The radiating melody had a calming effect, and Jess closed her eyes, too, leaning against the door-post.

She didn't seem to realize he stopped playing a while ago. Yoshiki watched her standing at the door, her long, brown hair neatly tied into a ponytail, eyes closed, her head resting on the door-post. He experienced this state of mind way to often not to recognise the signs of physical exhaustion. A few more seconds and she'll fall asleep standing.

"Miss Bright?", he said gently, like a breeze and she suddenly opened her eyes, unfocused and confused. She quickly came to her senses and cleared her thoat.

"Oh. I'm sorry, I just.... I had a call with the Hong Kong promoter and... saw the lights were on. I didn't want to disturb you", she apologised.

"I cannot sleep very well. Sometimes I stay in late to work, and the piano always helps to calm ... the nerves. It's better than a psychologist", he said smiling and she smiled back at him. He fiddled with the keys on the piano, playing random sequences with one hand.

"Do you play?", he asked suddenly and Jess shook her head apologetically.

"I never had any such talents. I tremendously enjoy all sorts of music, and I was always fascinated by this industry. But since I'm not musically talented, I work behind the scenes."

He nodded. "Everyone has different kinds of talents in this world. It makes every single person unique in their own ways."

Jess tried to read the emotions on his face but could not tell what he was thinking.

"You have not replied to any of my emails," she suddenly said and Yoshiki's hand stopped on the keys.

"Does it bother you? That I didn't reply?", he asked the obvious, smiling like an angel. Jess crossed her arms and nodded.

"Since we are going to work together for the next two months, I will be honest with you. It's a little rude not to answer. Even if you don't read the report."

"Oh I did. I read all of them," he smiled. To her questioning eyes, he responded with a shrug. "Since they were all without any mistakes, I didn't feel the need to write anything back."

"Not even a thank you?"

He looked up at her with an expression she could not decipher. "I don't thank people in advance. I made this mistake in the past, and ended up getting almost ruined. People use you if you are too damn polite. If you do your job well, I will thank your efforts. Afterwards. You are not making me a favor. You work for me, and I believe you are getting paid well to do your job."

That was ruthless, but it was also true. He uttered these words on such a natural, soft voice, that made them sound even harsher. How could he not change his tone of voice even once? Then Jess suddenly realized why everyone at this company feared this man. Journalists may mistake him for a sassy, soft spoken rock star, but this man sitting here at the flashy grand piano in leather knee boots, white leather pants and a transluscent black shirt, was no fool.

"I understand. And thank you for being honest," she replied. "If you don't mind, I would leave you alone now. I do need some sleep before the morning shift begins."

He nodded, and started playing another tune. As she said good night and turned away, he suddenly asked her, "Why do you think we will work together? The week is not over yet and I have not replied to your boss on whether you are on board for the tour or not."

She turned back and this time, she smiled at him. "It's been 5 days. If you were not satisfied with my job, you would have fired me long ago. See you tomorrow, boss."

As the door closed behind her, she heard his soft laugh, as he continued to play the piano.
X-ed pretty hard on first listen. My first Japanese band and second Japanese music love after Miyavi.

Faramir

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Re: Because of You
« Reply #7 on: April 17, 2017, 12:55:27 AM »
Two more chapters? And so quickly?

I feel spoiled.

What was the inspiration for Jess? I like her character. Update soon!

Teemeah

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Re: Because of You
« Reply #8 on: April 17, 2017, 06:25:41 AM »
Two more chapters? And so quickly?

I feel spoiled.

What was the inspiration for Jess? I like her character. Update soon!

Hehe. You know, it's Easter here, so I kind of have more time. Once the holidays are over, you won't get as many chapters as soon :P I'll have to work.

I'm a sucker for romances, so I needed a female character.
X-ed pretty hard on first listen. My first Japanese band and second Japanese music love after Miyavi.

Teemeah

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Re: Because of You
« Reply #9 on: April 17, 2017, 06:41:38 AM »
CHAPTER 4

The sound of laughter echoed in the studio as Toshi embraced Sugizo from behind and Pata playfully punched his arm.

"Sheesh, man, now I really feel old!", Sugizo smirked as he tried to withhold his tears. Heath was rarely grinning, but now he was. Yoshiki was sitting opposite them in his favourite armchair, legs crossed, his hands wrapped around his knee. These happy moments meant so much to them as a family, and he was also genuinely happy for Sugizo, who had just learnt that his daughter, Luna was pregnant.

"Man, the first X grandchild!", Toshi teased their friend, still clinging to his neck. "I'm so proud of you!"

"The credit doesn't go to me, though", Sugizo laughed. "But if you call me granddaddy, you are all dead!", he warned them playfully.

Heath crossed his arms and grinned at him wholeheartedly. "Hey, you at least have the chance to become one. Look at us old fucktards here, none of us has kids. Or any chance to have one, anytime soon. Enjoy your privilege!"

They all laughed, but this remark also reminded them of someone and all of them suddenly looked at Yoshiki. Pata was the first to ask, even though he never spoke much.

"Still no news?"

Yoshiki shook his head with a sad smile. He had been trying so hard to find the child. He hired several private investigators over the past years, since he saw them at Hide's grave 10 years ago. The beautiful faced boy with Hide's eyes. He froze on the spot, he was shocked. Could have been just a fan bringing her son to an admired idol's grave, but Yoshiki instinctly knew that was not the case. When he told the X members, they thought he was crazy. Toshi asked him if he smoked weed. But it just kept bothering him so much, he hired a private detective and the guy actually brought hospital proof of Hide's last girlfriend delivering a baby 7 months after Hide's death, in New York. That was not proof of him being the father, but those eyes... Those eyes were unmistakably his. How could he ever forget Hide's beautifully crafted almond eyes? They haunted his dreams every single night. This was something not even Hide's family knew about. Yoshiki doubted Hide himself knew. Yoshiki made it his mission to find the boy and find out why Mika never told anyone about him.


The tour started in Japan, and the Tokyo Dome vibrated with energy as X fans filled it up to the brim. The backstage was buzzing as usual, and Jess had no time to contemplate her awkward situation with her new boss, having to coordinate the show, handle suppliers and providers, and supervise all procedures. She knew that they would have to talk about what happened on the plane from LA to Tokyo, but there was no time. She still tried to avoid him as much as it was possible and it didn't seem like Yoshiki was against it, as he completely ignored her, apart from the usual daily 10 minute briefings she had to give him, as he wanted to know the details of everything related to the organization of each show. Thankfully, those were staff meetings, and she never had to face him alone after that night on his private jet.

X members flew to Japan using Extasy Records' private, X Japan branded jet to Tokyo a day earlier than Yoshiki, while staff members took regular flights, and the equipment was already shipped days before for the local partner for assembly. Yoshiki had to remain in LA to finish up the last agreements regarding the tour and he required his tour manager to attend these meetings. When all were done, they took the private jet, just the two of them. His personal manager and assistant took the regular flight to prepare his accommodation for his arrival, whatever that actually meant, Jess didn't really want to know. The jet was insane, it was customized to his requirements, with private cabins for each band member, and an extra cabin for staff members travelling with them. It also had a lounge, leather upon leather, with the latest hi-tech gadgets, built-in drink bar and the like. She had travelled with pretty famous American stars before, but this level of extravagance was rare even among the biggest names of the Western industry. The private cabins had king size beds and could be closed off for uninterrupted sleep during flight.

They had dinner on board, with some entertaining but superficial conversation about musical taste, politics and other things. They discussed the upcoming show, and she told him all details. He was pleased. Then they each took to their own cabins and Jess, enjoying the comfortable bed, turned on the lights and started to read a book. She hated flying and couldn't really sleep on board. Her cabin was the first one in the row, Yoshiki's was the very last one, at the back of the plane. They had a flight attendant serving them, but she didn't want to bother her to bring water and decided to get some for herself from the bar in the lounge, which was separated from the cabins with a thick curtain. As she got out of her cabin, roughly two hours after they finished dinner, she heard it. The kind of rapid, short breathing people gasping for air make. She glanced at the curtain contemplating whether to call the flight attendant but decided that in case of false alarm, Yoshiki would kill her, if she involved outsiders in his issues. That much she had already learnt of her new boss. She hesitantly walked to the last cabin and slowly opened the sliding wall.

He was swimming in sweat, his angelic features distorted by pain, but she instantly recognised that he didn't have physical problems. He was having a nightmare, tossing and turning, breathing heavily, his eyes moving rapidly under his eyelids. It must have been an insanely vivid dream. She decided not to interfere, it was none of her business and would have been an intrusion into his private space to wake him and let him know she had seen him in his most vulnerable state. Then he started crying, and she froze. It was painful to watch, it was the kind of genuinely deep despair that she had only seen from people who had just witnessed the loss of someone dear. God knows, what - or whom - he was dreaming about, but his whole body was trembling like a lone leaf in the wind. Without thinking, she sat down on the brink of the bed and touched his forehead, sweeping away wet locks of blond hair, stroking them gently, humming a calm melody, until the crying subdued and eventually ceased. She pulled the blanket up and covered him carefully. She turned around to get out of the cabin and she glanced at his face one more time. She would never forget the anger she saw in his eyes. She got startled and her heart launched a crazy beat, as she realized that he was awake.

"I'm... I just... I heard... and..."

He propped himself up on one forearm. "Get out of here," he said on a very low voice, almost a whisper, but his eyes were flashing with anger and pain. She didn't reply, just got out of the cabin as quickly as she managed, running back to her own space, where she stayed up for the rest of the night, with a multitude of emotions whirling in her heart.


When they arrived in Tokyo, they didn't speak, and she was hardly able to even look in his eyes. He didn't mention anything of the previous night but became visibly distant and cold towards her. Jess knew that there was nothing she could do about it, nobody likes to be vulnerable in front of strangers. She saw what probably even his own band members have never actually witnessed themselves. As much as Yoshiki was an on-stage drama queen, frequently collapsing and staging dramatic falls, off stage he was strong and commanding, never showing any signs of weakness.

The first show went without issues, and Yoshiki had to admit he was pretty satisfied with Jess' work. Flawless execution, and she had a commandable presence, a likeable personality that made it easier for partners to accept her as the manager in charge. She also surprised everyone when she talked to local Japanese staff in Japanese. That was something he had not expected. Later, Jin told him that Jess had been working for his agency for 10 years now, and learnt Japanese on the job, although it was not a requirement for her work at the time, working solely with US artists. She was impressive, but he just could not let go of that incident on the plane.

It was one of the worst nightmares he had ever had in his life, and if someone, he was an expert in having nightmares. For days prior, he couldn't sleep well, but the nightmares also avoided his erratic sleeps. Then suddenly, out of the blue, when he actually did fall asleep on the plane, he sank into the most frightening nightmare he had had. It was so vivid, so life-like he actually thought he was not dreaming, even though nothing in that dream actually ever happened. He was standing on the seaside on rocks, a bright sunny day, a gentle breeze stroking his face, when suddenly dark clouds appeared on the sky and he heard Hide's voice shouting from behind him, telling him to run before the storm hits. He turned around and he was standing there, on the terrace of a white plastered summer bungalow, the wind clawing his short, red hair, his expression worried and dark.

"Come off the rocks, Yo-chan! Run! Run before the tide comes!", he shouted, his voice trembling with fear.

Yoshiki tried to move, but his legs were not willing to accept the command. The tide rose, the wind blew harder, and the sky became almost pitch dark. Hide leaned against the railing of the terrace and shouted at him. But he couldn't move, and the tide kept rising, and he felt his body being enveloped in white ruffles, the ice cold water hitting his skin, the pressure against his chest growing as he became engulfed, with Hide now screaming. Yoshiki started to gasp for air as the sea swallowed him up. He opened his eyes and he was in the park in Shibuya, in that previous dream where Hide was leaning against the cherry tree. He was there, but he was not smiling this time. The swing was swinging empty, creaking against the cheerful sunlight frighteningly. Hide was crying. He wanted to run to him, to embrace him, to ask why he was crying but again, his legs wouldn't go, his mouth wouldn't open. Despair welled up in him, as Hide pouted, with his tears washing off dark eyeshadow, tainting his flowless skin.

"I never saw him. Please find him. Please," he whispered and the creaking of the empty swing became unbearably loud, piercing his ears.

He woke drenched in sweat, and the first thing he saw was Jess covering his body in a blanket. He felt violated, exposed, she intruded into his most vulnerable state. He felt anger welling up in his heart, and demanded that she leave. As he lay awake for the rest of the night, he promised himself that whatever it takes, he must find Hide's son. He concluded that the boy he had seen in previous dreams, was Hide's boy, and his friend wanted him to find his child. But what was the previous dream about? Why was he swallowed up by the ocean? Why was Hide worried about him?
X-ed pretty hard on first listen. My first Japanese band and second Japanese music love after Miyavi.

nb

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Re: Because of You
« Reply #10 on: April 18, 2017, 12:40:22 AM »
Did I forget to say "thank you"?

I'm sorry, thanks a lot :)

Please, go on

positively unsure。

Teemeah

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Re: Because of You
« Reply #11 on: April 18, 2017, 01:41:44 PM »
Did I forget to say "thank you"?

I'm sorry, thanks a lot :)

Please, go on

No, no no, I didn't mean it like that :D Thank you for reading!!
X-ed pretty hard on first listen. My first Japanese band and second Japanese music love after Miyavi.

Teemeah

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Re: Because of You
« Reply #12 on: April 18, 2017, 02:10:25 PM »
Chapter 5

As the Tokyo Dome show ended, and X Japan left the stage, Jess could finally breathe a little. The local organizer took over to finish handling the aftermath of the show, and she finally had time to sit down and eat something in the backstage, as the musicians took showers, changed clothes and prepared to leave for their Tokyo residences. Afterparty was long out of question, as much as they were vigorous and energetic on stage, they were all near or over 50 now, and the last thing they wanted to go to was some noisy club. Sugizo almost immediately left to visit his daughter, before they needed to fly to the next city in two days.

She saw Yoshiki leave the stage, and he was exhausted beyond words. One stage staff member supported him, holding his waist, until he could sit down inside the dressing room. It was no joke when people told her he drummed himself to oblivion on every show. She witnessed X Japan's live show for the first time, and she was thoroughly impressed. Toshi's voice made her cry twice, during Endless Rain and Without You. Both songs were incredibly beautifully composed and conveying so much pain and despair, she couldn't help but remember Yoshiki's feverish nightmare. No wonder he wrote songs like these. She could only imagine the amount of grief this man has had to carry on his shoulders, to be so drenched in it still.

As she passed the dressing room, she saw the team doctor, travelling with them everywhere, bandaging up Yoshiki's right hand, and then administering a shot into his arm, asking him to try and move his fingers. She shook her head. Probably she would never understand the drive he had, that he was willing to sacrifice his own body to be able to play these shows. Most people had some sort of addiction. Some people were addicted to alcohol, drugs or money, Yoshiki was addicted to his own fame, of being adored by a galore of screaming fans. At least, that's how she percieved it. What else could justify this madness, that he was willing to do this when his body was obviously already failing him? He had enough money to last two lifetimes, he certainly wasn't after the bucks he could earn, especially that he probably made much more money through his other businesses and investments that he would earn through X Japan.

As she was wondering about his motives, Viktora tiptoed to her table on her unchanging 5" heels, and announced that "boss wants you to come. Be at the car in 10 minutes", she uttered drily and Jess looked at her as if she had gone mad. Is this 20 something personal assistant giving her orders now? She pressed her lips together to supress the insult she wanted to throw at her and smiled instead. "Sure."

She was waiting at Yoshiki's black Audi, when he appeared, dressed in black, with huge sunglasses hiding his eyes and without saying anything, he motioned her to get into the car and he himself got in. She felt furious. Now he was treating her like trash. She violently opened the door for herself and got in, only to find herself sitting right next him. His face was uneadable, as always, even more so because of the sunglasses. She was waiting for Viktoria, or Yoshiki's personal manager to appear, and join them, but the chauffeur started rolling out of the parking lot.

"Where is Viktoria, and Jane?", she asked confused, but he didn't reply.

"Where are we going?", she now raised her voice and he finally heaved a sigh, as if she disturbed his inner peace.

"We need to talk."

"Okay, we can talk in the car, or at the hote lobby", she replied but he interrupted her immediately, on  a dry, cold voice.

"No."

Jess started to panic and contemplated calling the emergency number she had on speed dial, a number only her original company's employees could call. They had it for emergency situations when artists lose their right mind. She heard him heave a deep sigh.

"I'm not going to hurt you, for God's sake, what do you take me for?", he said on a low voice, obviously offended.

"Then tell me where we are going," she insisted and he pouted.

"I have an apartment in Tokyo. And it would be better if you didn't misunderstand this. We need to talk about what happened on the plane, and I don't want anyone to listen to that, even by accident."

One part of her was relieved, the other was trembling of the thought. She knew this would probably be the worst situation of her entire career in the business, and he could well ruin her future, if he so wished. She spent the rest of the car ride in silence, looking out of the window, without even seeing the flashy night Tokyo, her mind was wondering elsewhere. He also remained silent.

His apartment was in a skyscraper. Where else, she thought sarcastically, as they took the speed elevator and got off at the 67th floor. His apartment occupied the entire floor, lavishly furnished, but visibly empty otherwise. Black and white, like his office. No colors, not even a bright pillow. It was depressing. As they stepped in, he offered her a seat in the living room, on the huge black leather couch and asked her if she wanted a drink. She refused, her hands were almost trembling, she was worried she would spill the liquid out and let him know how nervous she was. She never visited any of her client's private apartments before. Especially not late at night. Alone.

For a couple of minutes, silence settled between them, as he drank half a bottle of water and ran his hand through his hair. He finally took his sunglasses off. His eyes were red and he looked exhausted. He took his leather gloves off and looked at her, sitting across of her this time, with a small table between them.

"That night on the plane," he began, "you must not talk about to anyone".

She nodded. "I am aware of that. I have signed the non-disclosure agreement, and I have never talked about private issues of my clients. This is something you don't need to worry about. No one can fare in this business if they cannot keep their mouths shut about artists' private lives." She sounded business-like and confident, even though she had a huge lump in her throat and in her stomach.

"Good", he replied, and leaned forward. "Look, I know that you only had good intentions and wanted to help. But I don't like being touched and nobody should enter my sleeping space. Ever. You can call it excess behaviour or star attitude or whatever label you want to tag it with, I don't care. Call me a psychological wreck or a lunatic, I don't care. Don't do this ever again. Even if you hear noises, just ignore it. Even if you think I'm suffocating or dying in my sleep, don't do anything. If I have to die, I will. But nobody will be there to witness it. You understand?"

Jess helplessly nodded. He was not shouting, or even being angry. His voice remained soft and calm, and she suddenly felt really bad for him. How much pain is he going though that he would rather die alone than let others witness it?

"And I don't need your pity, either. My chauffeur will take you to the hotel", he said calmly and stood up. Jess quivered. He was reading her like an open book.

"I apologise for intruding into your life," Jess stood up and said in Japanese, bowing in the Japanese fashion to him and walked to the door. She had no idea why she felt like crying when the door closed behind her.


X-ed pretty hard on first listen. My first Japanese band and second Japanese music love after Miyavi.

Guruxo

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Re: Because of You
« Reply #13 on: April 18, 2017, 04:36:04 PM »
Thank you for writing this  ;D 
It's great to see a high quality X Japan fanfic, as there aren't that many on the internet
I have to say, I'm a sucker for fanfictions lol. Very good!  :D

Teemeah

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Re: Because of You
« Reply #14 on: April 18, 2017, 05:44:44 PM »
Thank you for writing this  ;D 
It's great to see a high quality X Japan fanfic, as there aren't that many on the internet
I have to say, I'm a sucker for fanfictions lol. Very good!  :D

Thank you  :D I will try to keep up :D
X-ed pretty hard on first listen. My first Japanese band and second Japanese music love after Miyavi.

nb

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Re: Because of You
« Reply #15 on: April 20, 2017, 09:45:15 PM »
THX :)

positively unsure。

Teemeah

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Re: Because of You
« Reply #16 on: April 21, 2017, 09:24:05 PM »
Chapter 6.

Hide shook his head astonished, taking a drag on his cigarette. Yoshiki's eating habits drove him nuts. Some days he wouldn't eat anything and practically lived on beer and chocolate, other days he would swallow a whole cow. Like now. 4 bowls of rice, a huge plate of fried meat, spaghetti, fried fish (which Hide carefully deboned for him, Yoshiki was simply too impatient to do that), 3 bowls of miso soup, two bowls of curry and a plate of fresh fruit. Where did all that go, when Yo-chan was so thin his ribcage showed through his laced dresses he loved wearing on stage so much?

It was just the two of them, in the studio, where Yoshiki simply locked himself in for weeks now, working on the new album. If fans saw him, they would probably not believe their eyes. No lace, no eyeshadow, the leader was simply wearing acid wash jeans, a black tank top, his long, blond hair tied into a haphazard bun on his neck. His legs were restless, as always, as he shoved the food down, one bowl after the other, washing it down with an ample amount of ale.

"Where does all this food go?", Hide asked him amused, sending a cheeky smirk his way.

Yoshiki shrugged his shoulders and swallowed the last bite of his rice.

"I'm hungry. .... No chocolate?", he looked around the table looking for his daily dose of sweet drug. Hide chuckled.

"I ate it."

"What?"

"I ate your chocolate," Hide leaned closer sticking his tongue out at him.

Yoshiki stared at him for a brief moment, and then grabbed Hide's red locks with both hands and started to pull his hair.

"Nobody eats my fucking chocolate!".

Hide's laughter was ringing in his ear.


He sat up, feeling something wet on his face. It was a tear that glided down his cheek, and he quickly wiped it away. This time, it was a memory. Not a nightmare, not images he had never seen before. It was a memory from long ago, something he thought he had long forgotten. As he was sitting on the edge of his bed, the room only illuminated by faint light spots coming through the window, a sad smile flashed through his lips.

"I'd give you all the chocolate in the world, if I could see you again, just once", he whispered.

He stood up to walk to the fridge, which was empty, as usual, only the side racks filled with water bottles. He took one of them and walked to the armchair in the living room. His whole apartment was one big living space, no separate rooms, the different functions were simply divided by being elevated to a different height. The kitchen, which he never used, was at the same level as the living room, the bed stood on an elevated platform at the enormous window. At the other end of the space, was a huge bathtub, sunk into the floor, made entirely of black granite. Only the toilet and the wardrobe were separated by moving door-panels, plastered with delicate white paper, in the traditional Japanese style. The furniture was simplistic but visibly very expensive.

Black and white. He had no idea when he stopped liking colors. He used to like them. Blood red and striking blue: the contrast of hot red, throbbing with life and the lifeless tranquility of cold blue. He was a man of contrasts, contradictions and crossroads. He has always been. For a long time now, red faded into white and blue darkened into black, and he lost his ability to love the colors around him.

As he sunk into the armchair and his tense muscles started to relax, it suddenly occured to him, that for a ong time now, the first color that caught his eye in the midst of his black and white reality was Jess Bright's eyes. Her eyes were impossibly blue. And they changed hues, too, according to her mood swings. That night, when he harshly scolded her for what happened on the plane, the color of her eyes shifted to almost grey, as if something had sucked the pigments out of her iris. He suddenly felt remorse and heaved a sigh. Why is he now making others lose their colors, too?
X-ed pretty hard on first listen. My first Japanese band and second Japanese music love after Miyavi.

Teemeah

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Re: Because of You
« Reply #17 on: April 26, 2017, 11:39:45 PM »
Chapter 7

Snowflakes floated and settled gently down on his palm, as he stuck his skinny arm out the window of the attic. Tick tock. Tick tock. The metronome was relentlessly ticking, followed by distorted sounds of an acoustic guitar, squeaking and breaking up as Toshi failed the melody again. Yoshiki smiled into the snow-clad landscape and reached his other arm out, as well, taking a deep breath from the fresh air. Winter was his favourite season. Nothing bloomed that could trigger his asthma bouts and he could breathe freely. The guitar strings squeaked again. He turned around shaking his head.

"You'll never learn it that way."

Toshi stuck his tongue out on him and clumsily placed his fingers on the neck again, trying to press the strings down the right way. Yoshiki sat down on the floor, with the open window behind his back and just sat there watching his best friend struggling with the task.

"We will be rock stars one day. Well, if you can learn those chords, that is," he laughed and Toshi pouted.

"You're a brat!", Toshi retorted, and pressed on the strings even harder. Yoshiki shrugged his shoulders and turned around again to gaze through the window.

"So what if I am? We will still be rockstars. You'll see."


Toshi was glad he kept his habit of wearing huge sunglasses indoors. At least it hid his emotions, he could wear it like a mask that kept his inner turmoils secret. Now again, for the thousandth time that day, Yoshiki was unbearable. The others also kept their distance at times like this, and silently endured his antics. The shouting, the swearwords, the violent shattering of transluscent plastic as he dragged a pickaxe through the floor to his drum kit and smashed it into pieces. Where he found that axe, Toshi had no idea. Staff went about cleaning up his mess, as usual, everyone silently doing their job, quickly replacing the broken tams with new ones. They had an entire truck filled with spare parts for his drum kit, and Tama ran a separate production line in the factory, just for Yoshiki's drums. They were consumables, like plastic cutlery, and Yoshiki did consume them at such a rate, as well. Everyone was used to his outbursts, even Tama staff knew about them. The only one truly shocked at the scene was their new tour manager. Of course, she never witnessed soft spoken, almost shy Yoshiki's other side. As Taiji once aptly expressed, Yoshiki had one half of the face of an angel, the other half - an agonizing devil. He could be the nicest guy on the planet, kind hearted and attentive, but he had a destroying force within himself like no one else Toshi ever met.

It was kind of a miracle they became friends, at all. Nobody really befriended Yoshiki at school, either. He was an aloof child, often sick and missing classes, silent and withdrawn, except when provoked. He would kick and bite then, once he bit off a piece of a classmate's earlobe, because he called him a "mommy's boy". Toshi would still hang out with him, somehow he was drawn to his already manifesting magnetic personality, and his dreaminess. A dreaminess he always acted upon. Other kids were also dreaming about becoming this or that, but they never really acted upon it. Yoshiki did everything he could, to make those dreams come true. He rebelled, he fought, he bit anyone who would stand in his way. He dragged Toshi along with him, and he gladly followed Yoshiki's leadership.

More than 40 years had passed since, and Yoshiki was still as aloof and lonely, as he used to be in his childhood. Girlfriends came and went by, no one could really stand him for long. And Toshi also knew, that his friend was never really in love with anything but music. He valued his scores more than a lover's kiss, or a friend's hug. Everyone and everything came after music. It made Toshi sad, because he knew that his best friend was simply destroying himself every single minute of his life. During a beer drinking night out at a bar, back in the golden days, Pata once said something that struck Toshi as being incredibly insightful. Pata has always been like that, so calm and silent, just observing and never interfering. He said, Yoshiki would not live very long.

"His whole being is built on a force within himself, that keeps destroying his sanity," Pata said as a matter-of-fact, slowly munching on fried octopus, as if he was talking about the weather and not their bandmate's presumed future. No one could have predicted, that Hide would leave this world first, of course. Yoshiki didn't hear Pata's comment, rambling about in the opposite corner of the bar drunk, calling a punk band's guitarist a dickhead and smashing his face with a tabletop, his long blond hair messed up, after the poor unsuspecting guy made a comment about his laced outfit and called him a tranny. You don't mess with drummers, they hit hard. Hide was already sleeping on the table next to Toshi, with an angelic smile on his face, mumbling in his drunken dream in incoherent English, as he always did and then started snoring loudly. Taiji turned Hide's head to the other side, to stop the snoring and smirked into his glass of whiskey. They were all glad Hide passed out of the amount of alcohol he consumed, otherwise he would have already joined Yoshiki in dismantling the bar. Another place they wouldn't be let in next time.

Exhausted, Yoshiki was now crouching on the floor, breathing heavily, with his head lowered. Witnessing such a scene, you would think he had a good reason to get mad and smash an entire, freakishly expensive kit to pieces during rehearsal. But no. He just got angry because his roadie (obviously, a newbie) failed to set up one of the tams as he requested. Instead of just asking him to fix it, he actually started swearing like a sailor, and then rushed off stage, found that axe somewhere in the backstage and destroyed the entire drum set. Toshi heaved a deep sigh and glanced at Sugizo, who was fiddling with his guitar setup, trying not to pay attention to the drama. Toshi almost laughed out. Sugizo fit their band perfectly, he got the hang of what it was like to be an X Japan member, pretty quickly. They had 5 hours left to the show, they had no time to care about Yoshiki's emotional stress.

Of course, Yoshiki wasn't always violent, and didn't always destroy things in his way,  but when he was stressed or otherwise mentally unstable, hell broke loose. Toshi started wondering what actually might have caused this outburst now, right before their second show of the tour. If this goes on, they would have to endure his unstable condition for a long time. He decided to get up from the stairs he was sitting on and walked to Yoshiki, still crouching on the floor, next to his destroyed kit.

"You ok?", he asked Yoshiki in Japanese, squatting down and put his hand on his friend's shoulder. He  expected no answer, or Yoshiki's usual silent nod - a sign of his adrenalin levels subsiding and his sanity returning. But instead, what he heard was sobbing. Desperate, painful sobbing.
X-ed pretty hard on first listen. My first Japanese band and second Japanese music love after Miyavi.

nb

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Re: Because of You
« Reply #18 on: April 27, 2017, 06:36:23 AM »
Thank you for your hard work :)

positively unsure。

Teemeah

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Re: Because of You
« Reply #19 on: April 27, 2017, 07:38:08 AM »
Thank you for your hard work :)

I know it looks a little fragmented, but it will all tie up, I promise :)
X-ed pretty hard on first listen. My first Japanese band and second Japanese music love after Miyavi.

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Re: Because of You
« Reply #20 on: April 28, 2017, 01:12:07 AM »
I'm too busy with exams coming up to read/reply now, but I'm glad you're continuing this story and I'll definitely get to it in a few weeks.  ;)