It was a Friday evening; X had just finished one of the last concerts
of their tour and were sitting in a small bar now, celebrating their success
with the whole crew and old friends. The atmosphere was great. The show
has been perfect – they had played very well and the audience has
been enthusiastic like never before.
Yoshiki was sitting on hide’s lap and absentmindedly toyed with
one strand of his lover’s flame-red hair, silently watching Pata,
who was sprawled in a huge armchair in one corner, alone with his whiskey.
He was slightly concerned about the guitarist. He always looked sad and
absent, as if living in another world. Even now, whilst all the others
were partying, chatting and laughing, Pata seemed to just try to get plastered
as soon as possible, obviously intending to flee reality… As if
he wasn’t dreaming the whole day!
Yoshiki murmured some excuse in hide’s ear, stood up and slowly
walked over to Pata, trying not to stagger over his own feet. The small
drummer still was weak, his frail body being exhausted from playing the
drums for almost 3 hours. “May I…?” he asked quietly
and sat down beneath the other man, who wasn’t exactly sober anymore,
but not drunk either. The both of them sat there for a long time wordlessly,
Pata downing one glass of whiskey after another. It was a miracle that
he wasn’t already poisoned from alcohol, but he wasn’t even
really drunk yet. Yoshiki began to feel stupid now, so useless and in
the wrong place… “Pata…” he said shyly. “Err…
I don’t want to be nosy or obtrusive, but… what’s going
on with you…? You seem so… depressed…”
Not expecting to be talked to, the smaller man was startled at first,
and then just shook his head a little. His eyes unfocused, he tried to
avoid Yoshiki’s gaze, and took one long swig out of his bottle again.
His friend started to really worry about him now. Something was terribly
wrong with Pata! Did Taiji know anything? From the five of them he surely
had the most contact to the guitarist, after all they always shared hotel
rooms when the band was on tour – at least when Pata didn’t
“Pata… don’t you want to talk about it? You know…
I just try to help you; I don’t wanna annoy you… I’m
concerned about you…” He looked down at the small figure with
sad eyes, wondering since when the man looked so damn… vulnerable…
Did he just not notice all the time? Pata always hid in the background,
trying not to be seen, so this wouldn’t be so unlikely.
Noticing the intense gaze directed at him, Pata began to feel uneasy and
murmured: “It’s nothing… Everything’s all right…
Don’t worry ‘bout me…” After a few more swigs
of Jack Daniel’s, he slumped back in his seat and finally fell asleep.
Yoshiki made sure that the now piss drunk man didn’t fall off the
chair and then returned to the others. He spent the whole night celebrating
with his friends, but his mood was a little clouded.
The next day in the afternoon, the band met at the concert hall to rehearse
a little and get used to the dimensions of the stage. The rehearsal went
by without any real problems. Of course, Yoshiki yelled at them a few
times, but they all were used to that and didn’t take it very seriously.
They all knew what a nervous wreck their leader was before concerts…
After the rehearsal they decided to simply stay here and spend their free
time before the show backstage, since nobody knew what else to do. Taiji
grabbed some magazine and looked through it, whilst Toshi tried to talk
to him, but as soon as the vocalist realized that the other man was more
interested in the magazine than in his babbling, he took a book out of
his bag and also started reading. hide was lying in a corner, in the middle
of a mess consisting of clothes, shoes, make-up and lots of other stuff.
He had got himself a new CD this morning and was completely content now
listening to it, drinking beer and smoking one cigarette after another.
Yoshiki was sitting beneath him, watching his lover with a small smile
on his lips. Oh, hide was just so cute… Beautiful and sweet, like
an innocent little girl… Yoshiki’s eyes started to wander
through the room. Taiji, Toshi, hide… - where was Pata? Oh…
over there, just beneath the instruments… Huddled in one corned
he sat, grabbing his beloved Gibson tightly, quiet and inconspicuous,
his gaze absent like always. Yoshiki was unsure whether or not he should
go and talk to him, fearing to annoy him. He hesitated, but then stood
up and walked over to him. ”Hey… You okay?” he asked
slowly. The guitarist smiled sadly, a little confused. “What’s
the matter?” he asked back. “Err… nothing… just,
you know… you looked so lonely, and so I thought maybe you…
kinda need a little company… Hey… you look sad… You
alright?” Pata turned his face so that Yoshiki couldn’t see
the tear running down his pale cheek, but the drummer had gone through
far too many situations like this as if he didn’t notice that his
friend was crying. “Pata…” He took the guitarist’s
delicate hand into his own and guided him to the tour bus. They got in
and sat down in the last row. Pata tried to hide his face behind his thick
dark mane desperately, but it was no good. More and more tears ran down
his cheeks, and he trembled badly. Yoshiki draped one skinny arm around
his friend’s shoulders and tried to comfort him. “Hey…
don’t cry, little one… don’t be sad… Everything’s
all right… I’m here for you; I’ll help you… You
can talk to me if you want to… You shouldn’t keep all your
problems to yourself… nobody can go through everything alone…”
Pata pulled his knees to his chin and as usual didn’t say a word,
but just cried silently. After a few minutes he whispered, his voice choked:
“It’s nothing… don’t worry…” Yoshiki
was desperate. “Of course I do! You’re my friend, forgot that?
You’re sitting here crying, and I shall not be concerned?! I didn’t
see you laugh for months… You’re always sad… or drunk.
You can’t drown your problems in alcohol, Pata… I also sometimes
try to… but it doesn’t help anything…” Yoshiki
didn’t know what to do anymore. He felt so helpless… Something
was torturing Pata for such a long time now, but he didn’t know
what and especially not how to help the poor guy. Nobody has ever seen
him really happy the last few years…
“Pata! Please say something, anything! Talk to me… How can
anyone help you when you never say what’s wrong?! And believe me,
you do need help… Somebody must help you!” Tears were glittering
in Yoshiki’s eyes as he gently took his friend in his arms and stroke
his back comfortingly.
A strange feeling welled up in Pata. He hasn’t been embraced or
even touched for such a long time… This warm body against his own
felt so good… so comforting… Shyly he looked at the blond
man and then snuggled closer. “Don’t go away… please…”
he whispered. The drummer smiled sweetly and tenderly stroke Pata’s
head. “Don’t be afraid… I’ll stay with you…
I won’t leave you alone… I promise…”
Yoshiki was relieved. Maybe it was possible to help Pata after all. At
least he slowly started to trust him… The pianist knew he couldn’t
stand watching one of his best friends destroying himself, slowly wasting
away. The others probably didn’t even notice that Pata has become
dangerously meager lately, that he always was pale like freshly fallen
snow and had evolved a serious alcohol problem… They usually kinda
overlooked the quiet guitarist, and Pata never complained about anything,
he never said something, he’d never cry for help, not even when
he was completely desperate and at his wits end… Yoshiki has never
had the nerves to talk to him, but now he just couldn’t watch this
any longer, he had got to do something!
After a few minutes silent crying, the smaller man wrapped his arms around
Yoshiki’s neck tightly, looking at him with dark, sad eyes. The
drummer’s heart almost broke at that sight, and he pulled Pata closer,
to hold him for eternity, to never let him go again, to protect him from
whatever there may come…
Pata’s heart began to beat faster. Yoshiki looked… like an
angel… so beautiful… so… warm… caring… Slowly
their faces inched nearer and nearer, tears rolled down the smaller man’s
cheeks. Shyly their lips touched, the dark-haired man trembled lightly.
Gently they kissed, both very unsure about it, it was a sweet, innocent
kiss… A small white hand tenderly caressed Yoshiki’s closed
eyes, the other one still around his neck, searching for protection. The
drummer was shocked as he noticed how skinny those hands were. Like the
hands of a dead… But wasn’t Pata already dead psychically?
If not, he was dying these very moments… Terrible thoughts came
to Yoshiki’s mind, and he also started to cry. Concerned, the small
white hand wiped his tears away, but it was no good. “Psst…
don’t cry…” Pata whispered. “But… I’m
so worried about you… Afraid that you can’t bear it anymore…
and…” The other man sobbed even harder. “You…
you won’t do anything stupid ne?” The guitarist embraced the
violently shaking Yoshiki tightly and shook his head barely noticeable.
Gently he kissed the tears away, causing his friend to smile a little.
The blonde seeked for Pata’s soft lips again, and his long, slim
fingers lovingly caressed his pretty face. Carefully he kissed the arched
neck, quite unsure if he was doing something wrong. He didn’t have
the slightest idea how the shy man would react, since he didn’t
know if he has even had a girlfriend before, not to mention a boyfriend…
Pata never went somewhere except for drinking, he never talked and so
never got to know anybody…
Very unsure, Yoshiki continued to kiss him. Since it seemed as if he couldn’t
really help his friend, he could at least distract him from his pain for
Pata, still a little confused because of the unfamiliar feelings, silently
enjoyed the treatment. It just felt so right... warm and delicious...
As the other mean touched his chest feather-likely, he was sure to be
touched by an angel. Barely audible he moaned, but as a musician Yoshiki
had very good ears. A smile flashed across his face, and satisfied he
noticed that Pata's tension has become less and he also had stopped crying
now. "Don't stop... it feels so good..." he murmured, his eyes
almost closed. The drummer still didn't know how far he could go without
frightening or even scaring away the inexperienced man, but he took heart
and carefully started to explore new territory underneath Pata's T-shirt.
So skinny... He could feel every rib, every bone through the thin skin...
Even though hide and he himself didn't look very different, Yoshiki was
shocked and jerked back, but the other one gestured him not to stop. Pata's
skin got goose bumps from pleasure. Aaaah... so delicious, Yoshiki's moist
lips on his neck... He moaned softly, encouraging the other man to go
farther. The drummer slowly pulled Pata's T-shirt over his head, kissing
every centimeter of the now revealed chest. Gently he bit one nipple,
careful not to hurt him. He could hear how the guitarist's breathing sped
up, and also his usually very pale cheeks were faintly pink, looking like
roses... He really seemed to enjoy this...
For the first time since they have met, Yoshiki noticed how beautiful
Pata was. That smile, so sad and cute... The pianist licked Pata's earlobe
seductively, continuing with the neck, the skinny torso, down to the navel,
toying with it a little bit. Every touch sent shivers through the small
man's heated body. For the first time after a long time he could forget
all the pain, all his problems and the unbearable loneliness...
Tenderly Yoshiki kissed Pata's neck, his hands lovingly caressed the narrow
hips, the long, thin legs. The blonde was burning from desire, but he
knew that he had to give the shy, innocent man some more time, otherwise
he'd make everything only worse. As if asking for permission, he licked
the soft lips, causing Pata to part them a little, letting his tongue
in. They kissed passionately, their tongues dancing and tasting. Yoshiki
pulled his friend closer. He wanted to feel him so badly... The first
time since months he could see something else than pain, sadness and despair
in his eyes...
He was pleasantly surprised as he felt the small, warm hands stroking
his back gently, moving on to his chest and finally unbuttoning his shirt.
Now with a little more courage they slipped it over Yoshiki's narrow shoulders,
revealing his perfect body. Mmmh... Pata's hot breath on his skin felt
so good... It tickled, just like the long, silky hair, which was falling
over the other man's shoulder in beautiful dark curls. Without much effort
the drummer laid the light Pata across the seats and started licking his
torso, stroking the ribs with his tongue, playing with the nipples teasingly.
His hands caressed the hips, moving over the back, the legs and the sensitive
inner tights passionately. Pata's breathing was ragged, and his fingernails
were digging in Yoshiki's back almost painfully. The blonde's eyes were
glittering in satisfaction as he looked at his friend, who was lying there
in anticipation and desire, completely helpless. Sure that the other man
was ready for him, he slowly unbuttoned Pata's pants...
The guitarist suddenly pushed Yoshiki away, scared. "No! Yoshiki...
do you... have a condom...?" "No... but..." "No, Yoshiki...
really... no..." A single tear rolled down his face again. "Yoshiki...
I... I..." The small man began to cry desperately. "I... I'm
HIV-positive... I'd be... your death..." Badly shaken and totally
speechless Yoshiki embraced the trembling figure, rocking him back and
forth, trying to comfort him. He now understood Pata's strange behavior
lately. "Since... when...?" he stuttered. The other man sniffed
quietly and then whispered: "Since almost 4 years... That means...
if I'm really lucky, I have about 5 more years..." The pianist gently
stroke Pata's head. "Try not to think about it... I know how hard
that is... but... you only torture yourself... But... why didn't you ever
tell us...? Don't you trust us...?" "No, it's just... I didn't
want you to worry about me all the time... I didn't want to make any problems...
And you can't help me anyways... Yoshiki... Yo-chan... I'm so scared...
I don't want to die from AIDS... I'm so afraid...!" Shocked, the
blonde pulled the desperately crying man closer and laid his head on the
narrow shoulder. He could clearly feel the trembling and sobbing that
shook the other man's frail body. Everything in Yoshiki tensed as he looked
at his friend. He looked like a ghost as he stood there, haggard and meager,
the face pale like a sheet, the eyes red from crying - it was an image
"Pata... Are you... anorexic...? You are nothing but skin and bones...
You seem sick..." The guitarist shook his head silently. "No...
I don't know... I really don't know why I lose more and more weight...
I fear it's one of the first symptoms of AIDS... I'm afraid to ask my
doctor... I don't wanna know..." Yoshiki caressed his face comfortingly
and said, his voice soft: "I can imagine... but nevertheless... you
should go see him... No matter what it is, if you lose any more weight,
it might be dangerous... I mean, look at yourself! You are a walking skeleton...
You're so fragile that I don't really dare to touch you... I don't understand
how you manage to carry the heavy guitars with these weak arms..."
Embarrassed, Pata looked at the ground, tears glittering on his eyelashes.
"It's true... they did become heavy lately..." "No wonder..."
They both were startled as suddenly the door flung open and they looked
into hide's cheerful face. "Hey, what's up?" he chirped. "What
are ya doin'? You... eh... what's the matter?" All at once the bright
smile on his face vanished and a worried expression took it's place. He
had never expected to see what he just did. Pata was lying in Yoshiki's
arm crying - he had never seen him cry before! - and both men almost naked
Even though the small guitarist was the second oldest band member, he
was always being treated like a younger brother and being protected by
the others; so hide exclaimed worriedly: "Pata! What did he do to
you?! What happened?! Yoshiki!... Did you... rape him...?" "The
pianist looked at hide utterly shocked and whispered: "Do you...
really think I could do such a thing...?" Pata had silently watched
the scene until now, trying to stop crying. His voice surprisingly calm,
he spoke: "Please... don't fight! hide... Yoshiki just tried to help
me... Thank you for everything, Yo-chan..." At these words, he stood
up gracefully, gave Yoshiki a light kiss on the right cheek and left the
bus, tears running down his face again. Stunned, the other men looked
at each other for a while, then Yoshiki spoke up. "What do you think?"
hide kept silent for a minute and then answered: "I dunno... I have
no idea what's wrong with him, but he surely didn't look good..."
Suddenly it hit Yoshiki. "Oh my god!!!" he screamed, "Don't
you think---?! No...! That can't be!!! Paaata!!!!" He grabbed his
shirt, jumped out of the bus in great hurry and headed after Pata, but
it was too late. He could only watch as his friend jumped from a nearby
bridge, the small body vanishing into the raging depths of the river.
Yoshiki stood there, still not able to believe what just had happened.
He didn't even cry - he just stood there, looking at the water, not moving
for almost an hour. He felt empty, so fucking empty... Slowly he began
to understand what Pata's sudden death meant to him. He had lost a beloved
person again... He was gone forever, and he'd never come back to him...
He'd never smile for him again, like he did years ago... At these thoughts
he broke down, crying and screaming Pata's name over and over again, the
pain tearing his heart apart...
Little time later hide went out to search for his friends, but all he
found was a shivering Yoshiki, lying on the floor sobbing, his face flooded
with tears. "Yo... Yo-chan... What happened? Is everything okay...?
...Obviously not... Where's Pata?... Oh no... no... Did he...?! Oh my
god..." hide knelt down beneath the grieving Yoshiki, taking him
into his arms, intending to comfort him although he was filled with consternation
himself. Why... why...?! How could he possibly have done that?!!!!...
"hide... please... never leave me like... this..."
"I won't... I promise, Yo-chan... I'll always stay with you... Aishiteru,