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We Are The Kids From Yesterday (Two Roads Meet Epilogue)

a/n: HELLO HI ITS BEEN WAY TOO LONG SINCE I DID ANYTHING IM SO SORRY I HATE YEAR 11 i’ve been writing this on and off for ageS pls icant believe its done praise the lord and his miracles 

as it’s an epilogue it corresponds with the story of two roads meet (no shit) so it probably won’t make a lot of sense if you haven’t read that beforehand

anyway yea here goes

-TW FOR SUICIDE-

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They finally have a few days off tour, but Phil figures he would probably rather die than spend the tiniest fraction of them with any of his fellow members. These last few months have been insane, to give the greatest of understatements. Forming a band after graduation, for a start. Progressing from a dirty, noisy garage in the back of Ryan’s uncle’s house, to performing in late night bars and small shows, to this. Being signed. Actual touring; putting the contrast of trailing to Starbucks a few times in the space of four days, to travelling from London, to Manchester, to Glasgow, then to Dublin. In the same amount of time. He’s seen more cities in the space of a week than he previously had in his whole life. It’s insane. Everything’s just insane.

He’s probably talked to more people in the space of a week than he has in his entire life, too, to come to think of it. The likings of meeting up with his cosy circle of Tom, Esmée and Grace, had now somehow expanded into speeding through Drive-Thrus at 3am and losing count of the amount of food fights that have commenced in the hotel room using the products of their complementary mini-fridges with the likings of Ryan, Alex, and Charlie. His best friends, and fellow band members of two years. He never, ever, ever in a million lightyears, thought of his future shaping up like this. Never.

Of course, he’s still in contact with Tom and the group. He doesn’t know what he’d do if he wasn’t. He’s proud of him; his best friend of nine years. His rock. And now, an aspiring film director, working closely with some kinds of high-profile media producers Phil can’t remember the names of. All he knows is that he probably isn’t far off a glittering career in Hollywood waiting for him at the end of Sunset Boulevard. Their little secondary school joke was coming to life.

With being busy with Art college and with a portfolio six times the size of Phil’s song writing book, he doesn’t often get to see Esmée as much as he’d like to, although with Grace living so near, he’s never too far from an update from her; whether it’s a fond chuckle at a sneaky Snapchat selfie from her behind the desk in Topshop HQ, or a wistful sigh at her texts about how much she was missing them on account of the fact she’s living halfway up the country. She’s doing well, too.

As for Grace, well. He’s surprised she isn’t touring with them, to be honest. Her fate has followed similarly to Phil’s in terms of music-related careers; flitting from concert-to-concert, meeting and conversing with band member after band member had somehow developed into being offered a provisional place in none other than Star Surface after announcing they were in need of a new lead guitarist. Phil had never had the privilege of being introduced to Grace’s true talent when it comes to guitar-playing until only a few months ago, when he and the band decided to surprise them at a concert on their free night off.

Their young lives are already full of such success, undoubtedly accompanied by more potential waiting amidst the brightly lit years down the line. They’re living in the light at the end of their tunnels of teenage lives, and it’s blinding.

For Phil, maybe a little too blinding.

Days, months, even years have rushed past as quickly as opportunities without a single chance for hesitation, and Phil can’t keep up. He lived for years under the impression life was too dull for him; too slow, too uneventful. He always kidded himself that all he needed was a bit of action; a bit of light in his life to lift his spirits and chase the crawling demons inhabiting the depths of his mind away.

But the light he had in his life had burnt out many years ago, consequently burning a hole in Phil’s life, heart, and soul in the process.

There isn’t, hadn’t been, and never will be a single minute of Phil’s life spent without Dan on his mind.

Phil knows this isn’t a life he should take for granted. He knows he’s living a product of something only many teenagers can wildly fantasise of; and a life burning so fast, so brilliantly, so brightly, isn’t something every human is gifted with. It’s barely something any humans are gifted with.

Phil loves everything about this life. He loves grinning into the microphone at the sight of the glimmering lighters decorating the crowd in the middle of their cover of ‘Just One Yesterday’; every individual light illuminating the darkened population of fans beneath them reminding him of the population of the night sky (corresponding nicely with what that particular song meant to him). He loves being the only one awake at night when the tour bus is hurtling down the road at 70 KMPH, thinking of how he once gazed out of windows that weren’t tinted black, and sat on upholstery that wasn’t manufactured using very expensive leather.

Once, he fell asleep embracing something that wasn’t his own pillow.

Phil sighs into the night air. He loves this life, sure.

But he isn’t happy. He’s far from happy.

He gulps back any potential tears as the icy gust of wind slaps his cheeks, the inevitable feeling of crippling loneliness crawling back into consciousness after spending a few minutes without being surrounded by the presence of countless other people, whether it be friends fellow band members, fans, or their agency.

The lack of company also allows him to realize how it had been a very long time since he’d been alone like this; so long that the idea of being in his own company is now apparently considered an abnormality instead of the other way around.

Although being the centre of such a hectic life, Phil realizes how warped his views on abnormality and normality have been. He never anticipated living a life where the idea of going to the corner shop for milk on your own would be the height of alienation, and being screamed at by thousands of teenage girls is now just another part of the day.

It’s not normal.

Although Phil never wanted to be.

But he never wanted to be a celebrity, either.

He breathes out a shaky sigh of relief as the fallen leaves crunch under his shoes, the moon accentuating the silhouettes of the trees surrounding him and highlighting the opening he’s approaching.

He indulges in the almost-silence of the night he’s gifted with, following the uneven footpath created by an amount of steps from previous walkers that Phil can’t possibly comprehend.

He bets none of them are celebrities, though.

It just isn’t what you do, when you’re as staggeringly high up the social ladder as he’s found himself to be. There are parties to attend, interviews to go to, paparazzi to pose for, and journalists to satisfy. No-one has time for country lanes in the dark. They’re for people of supposed normality; non-celebrities, dog walkers, human beings. People with the biggest worry in their life being what casserole to cook for dinner, or whether they’ve remembered to e-mail their boss about the weekend errands. People who have time to walk, to think, to talk, to evaluate, to live.

Maybe that’s why celebrities’ lives tragically collapse in the way they do. Phil thinks. Because they don’t have time for this. They’re dealing with the lives that probably demand this kind of mental attention more than anything. We need time to think. We need to talk. We have more in our lives that needs to be evaluated, considered, and assessed.

But there’s a public image to keep polished, songs to write, agents to please, and guitars to play. No one has time for it.

He reaches the opening faster than he’d expected due to his straying train of thought stealing his consciousness for a couple of idle moments. He lets his lips tug at a soft, content smile as he finds a promising-looking log a few footsteps away from him, letting the full moon’s hazy glow serve as an effective enough light to guide him over to the log without tripping over any unwanted obstacles; his ankle still ached from the result of a few too many drinks combined with the tree root he had completely missed, and ever since he’d been determined not to repeat the performance of falling flat on his face in front of the group of newly-made friends.

Only there would be no-one to fall in front of, now, on account of the fact Phil’s almost completely alone.

Almost.

His gaze immediately settles on the luckily clear night sky, the broken clouds exposing a dark blackness behind them, which reveals the breathtakingly intricate patterns of stars peppered into the midnight hour above the treetops Phil realizes how dearly he’s been missing.

The brightest light burning into the stretch of varying shades of darkness catches Phil’s eye, sending a sudden chill jolting down his spine, feeling his breath catch in his throat the moment he tries to break the self-created silence with a whisper.

“Hi, Dan.” He sighs softly into the nothingness surrounding him, refusing to let his eyes wander to anything else that wasn’t the star dwarfing the rest of the pinpoints of light in the sky, the unnaturally bright light glimmering softly in response.

If Phil was crazy, he’d let himself believe Dan’s listening.

“It’s been a while since I’ve had the chance to do this.” He gestures sadly up into the array of stars he’s realised how much he’s been bitterly missing. “It feels weird that this used to be such a day-to-day procedure, whereas now I feel like I’ve de-familiarized myself with silence. It doesn’t feel right not having thousands of other humans in my company.” He gulps, gazing up into the sky as he suddenly realizes he’s now in the company of thousands of other stars, not humans.

But it’s only the company of one star he particularly cares about right now. He wouldn’t care if all the stars burnt out if it meant keeping Dan up in the sky, lighting up the darkness he’s such a stranger to.

“I don’t know how I’m finding all this celebrity stuff, Dan.” He sighs, feeling his voice wobble on the last word. He wonders if Dan’s been watching him as much as he’s been thinking about him; if he could see the countless concerts he’s performed in the space of these two years, watched over the roads he’d been hurtling down in the tour bus, the oceans he’d been flying over, leaping from city to city, making the most of the sheer undiscovered broadness of the earth humans are given no choice other than to explore. He’s living this live in a way he’d never imagined remotely possible, and he wonders if Dan would be proud of him.

He wonders if Dan knows a lot of things about his life. He wonders if he knows about his almost love-affair with Ross; the drummer from Star Surface. He wonders if he knows how much it pained him to see the heartbreak written into Ross’s face after having to turn him down. He wonders if he knows about him seeing his own face on the cover of Wednesday’s latest Kerrang! magazine, the countless interviews they’d been flitting to and from, the appearance they’d been asked to make at Reading Festival last year to introduce Arctic Monkeys. He wonders if Dan’s proud of him.

But most of all, he wonders if Dan knows he’s not happy.

“I know I shouldn’t take this life for grante- well, strictly speaking, no human should ever take a life on earth for granted.” He corrects himself. “I know I shouldn’t be taking this quality of life for granted, and I really do try to appreciate it. I do appreciate it; of course I do. I’m just-…” He sighs, lowering his voice although it’s pretty evident there’s no need unless he feels like he’s going to disturb the trees. “Until now, I never understood how someone constantly surrounded by people, friends adoring fans and an eventful life full of excitement could be so lonely.”

He fiddles with his shirt sleeve, keeping his gaze fixated on the light which, although he’s certain could be a trick of his imagination, had dimmed slightly in empathy. Almost as if he was trying to hint he can relate.

He frowns in sudden realization of what Dan was possibly trying to imply.

“Celebrities-… they’re like stars, right?” His voice cracks. “Only the ones that shine the brightest get credibility; they get noticed. They’re given a name, a purpose, a sense of belonging in the futile culture of stardom. Like stars; it’s only the brightest most noticeable ones that are given a name, given a place in the man-made constellations made for them. The Ancient Greeks only cared about the ones that burnt the biggest, most beautiful light. There must be an uncountable amount of less-bright stars that have been completely overlooked by ‘Orion’ or the 'Big Dipper.’ Where’s their sense of belonging? Their existence hasn’t been determined because they simply haven’t been recognised by humans? Humans; who make up the most infinitely tiny, insignificant proportion of the universe. We’re nothing to stars. Yet we seem to have enough control over them to feel the need to name them. Almost as if we created them.

It’s the same kind of culture with celebrities, really. Some with equal, if not more talent can be completely unknown, overlooked, completely disregarded because of stupid celebrities with wasted fame that isn’t deserved, nor is it remotely necessary at all.” Names such as Paris Hilton and Kim Kardashian spring to mind. “Some are never given a name. They’re never given a sense of belonging in the world of Hollywood. They’re never noticed. They’re just another anonymous, insignificant proportion of the population that makes up human life, aren’t they?

Why do we have to rely on others in order to make ourselves noticed? Why is it their responsibility to determine our significance as a human? We’re all the same family under one sky; why should it be when one celebrity dies, millions cry, although when millions of humans die, no one even notices, let alone cries?” He has to gulp back a tear at the mention of death while having Dan’s light in his line of vision.

He sighs, letting the silence cut into his consciousness as he realizes how much he’s been repressing his star talk. Five minutes of being alone with the stars later, and he’s already feeling better than he’d ever been before; well, since Dan’s passing at least.

“I find it rather abstract how…” He pauses with a frown. “How while in the concept of man-created astrology, giving stars names and constellations is effectively humanizing them; transforming them into a concept humans can comprehend. One they can feel as if by joining a few dots they can suddenly conquer the universe.” He shudders; astrology sickens him. “Although while the culture of celebrities is almost dehumanizing humans- turning them into objects. Into perfect dolls that should only be approached with a scream and an autograph pen being thrown at their face.” He smirks at the memory of the Sharpie hitting his eye. “I mean, kissing the ground where Justin Bieber has walked? You wouldn’t exactly fall to the pavement after the postman had delivered something to your house, would you? Just because he’s known, because he has a name and a place in this world, that apparently results in the perception that he’s less than a human, and more of a God?” He shudders, one experience with being in the same hotel lobby as Justin bloody Bieber and his rudeness to staff had been enough to put him off meeting any huge celebrity ever again. It wasn’t as if his opinion on him was sky high as it was, but if that experience wasn’t offputting, he doesn’t know what else possibly could be. “I’d never really come to terms with how different a celebrity’s image can be from their actual self. I’m sure Justin would probably have a lot less people falling to his feet and cradling the gravel he’d stepped on if they knew only a fraction of the stuff that we do.” He grins. It’s the best part of being 'famous’; hearing all the embarrassing gossip about your fellow celebrities. It gives you the same rush as you used to get while hearing something awful about someone you hate back in high school.“ His eyes glitter. “Although they do say high school never ends.”

That statement has been pretty damn true in the world of fame. If you’re not rich, good looking, interesting or remotely talented, you’re forgotten about. You’re worthless. Four years of battling for popularity and significance in high school, as he realizes, is only a sample of what to expect for the rest of human life. It’s unescapable. The only thing that changes, are the trends. The names. The faces.

It almost seems as permanent and timeless as a star’s life cycle through the eyes of a human; especially considering a human life is gone before a star can even blink.

“But even stars die out.” Phil breaks the heavy silence as he suddenly flickers his eyes up to the sky, meeting Dan’s light in a hard, sincere gaze. “Like celebrities.”

Like celebrities. The words echo relentlessly through the midnight atmosphere, hauntingly laced into every gust of wind rustling the forest of trees behind him, shattering the peaceful quietness resting on the grassy fields in front of him, and hollowly circling Phil’s mind, stinging with realization over not only what he’d just said, but how much he’d actually meant it.

He stands up suddenly, his teeth chattering in the sudden drop of temperature the cruel midnight weather inflicted upon him. “I would say I’ve had a lot of time to think about the mortality of the universe, and bore you with another lifeless tangent in the name of being somewhat poetic.” His voice is suddenly bitter, every word spat into the darkness coated with venomous self-hatred as he begins walking. “But I haven’t. I haven’t had time for anything apart from being able to collapse into a bed in the corner of a 'Tour Bus’ for a few hours before being woken up to repeat the same routine over and over again, with the same false smile etched onto my face, and the same sharp ache in my hand after unwillingly playing the guitar for hours after I’d usually pack it up for the night.

It’s not how they edit it to look in those stupid 'band documentaries’. That’s just a sugar-coated perception made by staring down the lens of a Canon Powershot with our 'Greatest Hits’ edited into the background. Never have they thought of giving the public an idea of what it’s like from the alternative point of view, minus the heavy layer of media.

They don’t care about the receiving end though, do they?” He gulps, staring up at the blackness of the star-studded sky exposed between gaps of thick, pale clouds. “We’re hid behind it all.”

Dan dims briefly in response, responding with a shaky glimmer in response to the tidal wave of dark clouds ominously approaching, as if he knows exactly what Phil is desperately hinting at, and responds in opposition with an equal amount of desperation, the flickers in his light becoming increasingly panicked as Phil continues walking.

Although, how does Phil know he’s even listening? Undeniably, it’s a more logical explanation that his imagination was still fucking with his conscious state of mental health causing him to believe in ridiculous concepts such as the whole 'afterlife’ thing he previously expressed relentless scepticism towards. How does Phil know he’s not being completely ignored, when that’s all he’s ever known his whole life?

As he walks out of whatever forest/field situation he’s found himself in, his eyes are caught by a glimmer of light shining through the bare branches of mid-winter. He gulps, walking ahead in order for further revelation of what seems like a building of some kind behind the dispersing trees he’s walking out of.

Ten minutes is all he needs to come to the realization that the building is not alone. As the lights accumulate and the trees  He gulps again, his eyes trailing over the beautiful city skyline that it’s a part of, surrounded by an array of artificial lighting poured into every tower, skyscraper and apartment his peripheral vision can take in one glance.

It’s the same city.

The same city they shared the night with, those many years ago. The same city that stole their breath as they exchanged sleeping for beholding the glittering view from the Skybar. He locks his gaze on the same building that saw him and Dan rushing out in the middle of the night to become a part of the beautiful view of the surrounding urban galaxy. The same building where they had proved their love to eachother in a way that can only bring back Phil a haunting shiver whenever his mind ghosts over the memory.

The same building where Phil was about to become a part of not the human-created galaxy, but the real one. Above him.

“If I started here…” He glances up in the sky. “It only makes sense that I end here.”

Dan’s inability to respond doesn’t stop Phil’s instincts screaming at him that this was completely crazy, wrong, insane, along with any other panic-fuelled adjectives the English dictionary can cope with.

Phil knows damn well Dan’s aware of what he means.

He follows the path, swapping grassy mud for cold, hard concrete as his feet hit the ground at a quickening pace, leaving the country for the city in one swift motion of the worn-out wooden gate, escaping the shadow cast by the last tree and casting shadows of his own in the amber streetlight he suddenly finds himself under.

-

It takes a lot of use of his sunglasses, pulling his fringe down over his eyes and hitching his scarf up over his face to avoid any dreaded recognition. Plastering on yet another false grin while scribbling his name in Sharpie ink onto someone’s phone case really would be the last thing he could possibly be dealing with right now.

But he’s made it. He’s here.

He allows himself to let out a soft chuckle in disbelief at the postcard-perfect view that had so nearly completely slipped his memory. He tugs off his sunglasses, almost taken aback again as he’s suddenly exposed to the vibrancy of the sight without having to peer through tinted lenses.

“Beautiful, isn’t it?” Dan’s voice echoes hauntingly in his mind, causing Phil’s heart to clench at the vividness of is voice. If he didn’t know any better, it would’ve been enough to convince him that Dan’s still here.

But he’s not.

Phil gulps, locking eyes with the unchanged skyline stretching 360 degrees around him. Everything’s identical to how they left it; all those years ago; the skyline still juts out with the family of skyscrapers over to his left, his heart clenching at the lights studding the concrete. The same Cathedral that had stuck in his memory since he last gazed at the city stood proudly to his right, the lights peppering the building with a soft glow, illuminating every detail of the breathtaking, historical architecture Phil can only wildly dream of creating.

The seemingly infinite network of roads is still there. They all still run, curve, wind, twist and meet in the same directions; and the family of traffic and humans still continue to drive across the tarmac, the miniature life forms whizzing past eachother at a rate Phil can’t even comprehend.

He finds almost immediate comfort in being in contact with the roads again. Hearing the distant roar of the bustling night life continuing on beneath him in complete oblivion to his observations was enough to cause the tension in the pit of his stomach to unknot. Because whether you’re dead, or you’re alive, humanity lives on. People have futures to experience, hearts to break, achievements to be made, opportunities to grab at the last second, opportunities to pass up, love to fall in, and lives to live. 

They’re all sorted, in terms of human life. The roads have taken care of their futures. All they have to do is ride through it.

“Apart from me.” Phil suddenly confesses out loud, although he’s certain Dan will understand. “I’m one of the less fortunate ones, aren’t I?”

His eyes leave the city for the night sky, studded with starlight above him. “I used to think of my fate to be set in concrete. I could see it laid out in front of me, and I was content with the possibilities the future could’ve provided me with. I was happy.”

He sighs to himself. “A lot can change in a few years, can’t it? I couldn’t recognize my future if someone personally wrote it in the stars for me.” He hesitates. “Maybe because there is no future for me anymore.”

He lets his eyes trail over to the largest, brightest light in the sky, and he gulps at the pang in his heart.

“It’s said that the lights that shine twice as bright, burn for half as long.” Giving the example of Dan’s life was pretty much useless given that it’s blatantly obvious to both of them, so he settles for another example. Perhaps a little less obvious.

“Celebrities are considered the brightest stars in the sky of humanity.” He begins to reflect back on his previous musings in the field. “They’re the ones who make a name in the world; make an impact in society, the ones who get noticed. Noticed for perhaps not entirely who they really are inside, but the name they make for themselves. The mask they’ve created to hide behind.

I think I can safely say I’ve had my fair share with Celebrity culture.” Phil narrows his eyes, reflecting back on the crazy mess of memories from his short-lived course of a couple of years of burning as bright as he did. From the glimmering lights illuminating every venue they’d performed in, through the millions of flashes per second of the paparazzi lights in his face, to here; under the stars, locking his gaze with the only light in the sky that matters. The only light that has ever mattered to Phil. “I’m done with it. My road’s finished, and fate has stopped serving me.” He gulps. “All that’s ahead is a dead end.” He feels a mixture of adrenaline and anxiety begin to swirl hotly in the pit of his stomach as he dares to glance down at the sickening drop beneath him, the lofty height dwarfing even the tallest of humans amongst the grandest of buildings. He’s at the top; at the very edge of the city. At the very edge of his life.

“I’ve always believed soulmates meet, because they have the same hiding place.” He glances up at the sky, allowing himself to edge further forward. “The stars were the only place we felt comfortable in. In the fields, immersed in the night with only the moonlight to give us a sense of directions, we could be ourselves. We didn’t have to worry about the impressions we were giving to other people. We didn’t have to worry about anyone else, apart from eachother. And the array of lights above us.”

He begins to lift himself onto his tiptoes, inhaling the city air, rich with pollution. Rich with human life.

“You’ve returned to the hiding place.” He gulps. “And it’s time for me to join you.

Because I like the thought of two people spending forever together.”

He suddenly whirls round, turning his back on the city. Turning his back on humanity, the endless roads, fates set in stone, and life.

His gaze sets only on the brightest light in the sky. His light. His star, his guidance, his sense of belonging, his hiding place.

The only light that always has, and always will matter to Phil.

He closes his eyes, and relaxes his feet.

-

And you only live forever in the lights you make

When we were young we used to say

That you only hear the music when your heart begins to break

Now we are the kids from yesterday

5

Happy birthday, Miss Croft! ♥

You’ve always been my hero since I was a little child and you were always there to show me that no matter how hard life is, how dark you can see the world, there’s always something to fight for. You’ve always cheered me up in the bad moments and encourage me up to carry on. I can’t thank you enough. You’re my role model and I love you with all my heart and soul.

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Dan&Phil | * ✫ All Of The Stars ✫ * 

so (as many of you may know) i wrote a fic called two roads meet and i’ve been meaning to do a video for it to this song for i dotn even know How long so here is video thank for watch

Remember when I asked James Dashner what was Thomas’ name? Well in The Maze Runner, page 67, there is a part where Thomas looks at his own name on a gave and he gets a feeling of sorrow. We all know WICKED gave Thomas his name, but maybe some part of Thomas still remembers he had a name before WICKED. Also this may have been a sick trick from WICKED, if Thomas saw his own name, imagine the killzone patterns they would get

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