41. "The kiss tasted like tears." (lesgo pain sista <3)
The kiss tasted like tears.
Maka clutched his hair, fingers digging in too hard, but every pinprick felt like an anchor to the world. She was crying silently, but kissing him more fiercely than she ever had before, even more passionately than that night they had spent in the forest, away from the prying eyes of the Government.
Her tongue against his is like a hot brand, the only real thing. He wished he could wrap her in his arms, but the shackles prevented it.
“All right,” said a voice roughly, and shoved him forward. There was something inscrutable in Spirit Albarn’s face as he hustled Soul forward.
The drumming began. The young executioner began to read.
“You, Soul Evans, are hereby sentenced to die, in the name of Lord Asura, for the crime of hiding your Weapon powers, without the express permission of the Government–”
But Soul’s eyes didn’t leave Maka’s tear-streaked face, even with each halting step towards the gallows.
Before it’s even begun, Soul knows the slideshow is going to be a shitshow.
Teenage Soul was a mess. There’s no other way to put it; teenage Soul skipped classes and sated his anxiety with pot instead of talking to anyone about getting medicated. More than that, teenage Soul was merely teenage Maka’s shadow - even more than adult Soul is now - and in light of recent events, he’s not really sure how walking down that particular path of memory lane will go down. Especially with drunk Maka pressing her cheek on his shoulder and innocently nibbling at a slice of cake.
Leaning on Maka had been routine for him for a very long time. She was his comfort blanket, his best friend, his lifeline - and to everyone around them, it must’ve looked a little desperate, a little pathetic. Sometimes he thinks he was; Maka had been everything to him for so very long, all through middle school, right up until her parents had split and suddenly she needed his support, too. From there, they’d been inseparable - SoulandMaka,MakaandSoul - and the rest is history. They’ve grown up together. They’ve grown up leaning on each other, through thick and thin, and he’s not sure how Maka will take reliving such facts.
I really like dancing with you, Soul. It makes me happy. I don’t ever want to stop.
How can she say things like that and not expect him to fall for her? How can she validate him like that - let him know that she needs him, too, maybe even as much as he needs her - and not expect him to fall at her feet? She’s merciless. Green eyes will be his undoing. He will forever be half a man, half a person, without dewy green eyes and her hand in his.
He’s not that kid anymore. He’s not helpless, not useless without a hearty dose of Maka as a morning pick-me-up. Soul has a band, has friends and interests and ways to vent his frustrations and creativity. He has a nearly famous brother and prim, expectant parents and a pretty decent head on his shoulders. He has Maka, still, and certainly needs her, always - but in different ways, he thinks. Less dependent ways. More for companionship, completeness. He wants to wake up for years to her sleepy face, her cute button nose. He wants to be around when she grows old but her spirit still sings youth.
She could feel his concern radiating towards her, but she refused to look his way. Anger coursed through her. She didn’t need, didn’t want his pity, the only worse in the world–
Was Soul lying in the casket in front of her.
Her father tried to place a gentle hand on her shoulder, but she wrenched it from his grasp. It was hard to breathe. Maka bolted from the graveside, the echoes of her friends calling for her lost in the wind, each pounding footstep taking her farther away from her failure, from her shame, from Soul.