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m - stony silence

chemistryisfun in ghostsugar_rp

Found [tag Chiaki]

It was a gray day of June gloom, and Yuzuya's mood matched the sky as he walked through the school grounds. He rubbed his tired eyes with his fingertips and cleared his sore throat. He had really wanted to stay home. However, he hadn't missed or been late to a single day of work yet since becoming a teacher last year, and he desperately wanted to keep his record going as long as possible. Once he took a day off for himself, he was sure it would be easier and easier to slip into not getting out of bed anymore. Anything but that.

Today he had duty at the back gate, to greet the students as they came in and make sure they were walking safely to school. When it was his turn he always felt embarrassed standing out there. The students' eyes on him often made him feel as though he were the one being supervised and evaluated.

Yuzuya took a shortcut across the grass and through some trees, not wanting to be late. And that was when something white on the grass caught his eye. Drawing near to inspect, he could see that it was a shirt, and then that that shirt was on a body that was lying face down in the grass, limbs splayed. "Oh my god," he gasped. Alarmed, Yuzuya ran over as fast as his legs could carry him.

"Aoki-san!" he cried, recognizing the boy's black mop of hair and the thick glasses. He tried to turn the boy upwards, checked his neck with two fingers for a pulse. It was there, but the breathing was shallow. "Aoki-san, Chiaki, can you hear me?" He pried open one eyelid to see if there was eye movement, and didn't see any. "Shit," he hissed, and reached for his cell phone.


Chiaki was limp against Yuzuya, his head rolling loosely along his neck, and his breathing shallow -- but he was definitely breathing. Then he grunted faintly, twitched, and looked up at Yuzuya dazedly -- his glasses appeared to be missing, and his eyes appeared clouded, unfocused. His face looked drained of most of its color, more so than usual. "Shibata-sensei?" he slurred, attempting to lift a shaking hand.

Before he could get any more words out -- or even before his mind had a chance to become any more coherent -- his stomach lurched, quite suddenly, and he rolled onto his hands and knees, shakily, and vomited weakly into the grass. It wasn't much -- there didn't appear to be much in his stomach to begin with -- and he was shortly left sputtering and coughing wetly, swaying slightly even on all fours. The world spun. Why had he suddenly become so violently ill? He couldn't recall having been sick the night before, but -- at the moment, his clouded, muddled mind hadn't yet figured out why he'd come to outside, lying in the damp grass.
Yuzuya had tucked away his phone quickly and moved to support Chiaki when he started throwing up. He patted the boy's back with one hand the way his mother used to do for him when he was sick. "Hey," he worried. "What happened to you? What are you doing out here?"
"I don't -- " Chiaki stopped, coughed some more, spat into the grass again. The bitter taste of bile in his mouth was strong despite the small amount of vomit. "I'm not sure," he wheezed, and wiped his mouth on the back of his hand. He stayed that way, breathing heavily through his mouth on all fours, trying to get the world to stop shaking back and forth. Slowly, the memories of the previous night swam back into his head, looped and warped like they'd passed through a series of funhouse mirrors. He'd gone looking for his mother's ghost -- and he'd found her. And then things had...things had gone wrong. After that -- nothing. How had it ended? Was his mother still around? Obviously, he was still alive, but...

"I don't know," he said, trying to sniffle, but he only smelled vomit. Ugh, it was always extra unpleasant when it came out his nose. "I don't remember -- I -- " He shuddered, coughed again. He tried to sit back, but the world tilted faster than he sat up and he only fell onto his back, dazedly. He didn't feel like he'd just woken up after a night's sleep -- he felt like he'd woken up after being drugged. Had that been his mother's doing. "I th...I think I'm sick, sensei," he gurgled, closing his eyes. Where were his glasses? He'd had them last night. They must have been somewhere around here. "I'm s-s-sorry. I don't know..."
Yuzuya picked Chiaki's glasses up from the grass and handed them to the boy. "Okay. It'll be okay, let's get you over to the dorm, and I'll call Murakami-sensei," he offered. From his pocket he pulled his handkerchief, which he tucked into Chiaki's hand. "Do you think you can walk?"

"I -- I think so," he wheezed, quietly, and pressed the handkerchief to his mouth. He breathed in and out through it, slowly. It seemed to help. There was something comforting, vaguely familiar, about its scent. After a few seconds of steady breathing, he put his glasses back on with shaky hands. "I think I can walk now," he said, his voice still thin and reedy. "Th-thank you, sensei."
Yuzuya helped Chiaki up and offered the boy his arm, heading off in the direction of the dormitory. He spoke quietly as they walked, just trying to keep Chiaki's attention on his progress. "We'll get you a drink of water, to rinse, okay? Hang in there. You can wash up, and lay down and rest, and you'll feel better soon, I'm sure."
Chiaki nodded, still feeling shaky on his feet, but able to walk. As he hobbled alongside Yuzuya back to his dorm, he slowly felt the feeling crawling back into his fingers and toes. Wait -- had they been numb? He hadn't noticed before.

He was glad that his room was neatly kept by the time Yuzuya helped him back to his room, after a brief stop at the bathroom to rinse his mouth out. He still looked pale -- now that he'd recalled what had happened the previous night, his mother's terrifyingly twisted visage was stuck firmly in his mind. "Th-thank you, sensei," he said, sitting down hard on his bed. It was good to be able to sit. Lie down, too. Soon.
Yuzuya took his cellphone out of his pocket and glanced at the clock. Murakami-sensei should be in her office by now, he reasoned. "Listen, Aoki-san," he said softly. "You change clothes and get into bed, and cover up. I'm going to give Murakami-sensei a quick call. I'll be right back," he said. "Okay?"

Chiaki nodded his head. Yuzuya slipped out of the boy's room, closing the door behind him. He dialed the school and asked to be transferred to the Nurse's office.

"Murakami-sensei, excuse me," Yuzuya said briskly when she picked up. If he were paying any attention to himself at the moment, he might have been surprised at how he was speaking intently without stuttering, especially considering whom he was speaking to. "Listen, I just found Aoki Chiaki passed out on the grounds. He seems really sick. Can you come look at him?"
Sumire's eyes widened as Yuzuya told her the situation (and a smaller, more impressed part of her mind noted that he wasn't stuttering), and looked at her emergency kit. "How exactly have you found him - I'll need to know, secondly," and this was important, that tree hadn't claimed any victims under her watch yet, but there was always a first for these things, "where are you?"

Sumire put Yuzuya on speakerphone as she started collecting things for her black medicine bag. "Keep talking, sensei, tell me his symptoms."
"I'm outside Aoki-san's dorm room, he's changing into pajamas's so I can get him back into bed." Yuzuya said, keeping his voice low and covering the receiver to protect Chiaki's privacy. "I found him passed out on the grass by the maple trees that're in between the boys' dorms and the South Gate. He was all wet, like he'd been there a while. No visible injuries. When I woke him up he vomited, and he seems very disoriented."

Yuzuya furrowed his brow, glancing at the door. "Do you think he has a concussion or something? Or the flu?"
"I won't know until I see him, Shibata-sensei," Sumire murmured as she selected her final instruments and switched the phone to her other ear. "But, don't worry, I'll be right there. If he needs more medical attention than that, we'll call the proper help." Sumire took a deep breath.

"I'm glad you found him, sensei," because who knows what else might have. Sumire murmured. "Alright, I'm on my way. Goodbye, Shibata-sensei," Sumire hung up the phone, in full work mode.
Yuzuya pressed the button to hang up and looked at his phone for a moment, quiet. He was glad he'd found Chiaki, too. If something had happened to his student, the way it had happened to that strange girl from the night with Ren, or the way it had happened to Sakai...

Yuzuya didn't have a good feeling about this at the moment.

He knocked softly on Chiaki's door to see if the boy was done changing his clothes yet. "You okay, Aoki-san?"
"Yes," came Chiaki's muffled response through the door, then a click. The door opened, and Chiaki's wan face peeked out from behind it. "Y-you, um, you can come back inside if you like, Shibata-sensei..." He stepped back from the door, opening it up wider. He was dressed in pajamas that were at least one size too big, hanging off his thin frame loosely but comfortably. They looked worn -- maybe hand-me-downs. Still slightly shaky, Chiaki climbed into his bed, drawing the covers up around his waist.

"Is, um, is Murakami-sensei coming here?" he asked. His voice was still a little hoarse from the vomiting.
Yuzuya came back inside and closed the door behind him, keeping quiet. He walked over to set Chiaki's desk chair beside the bed, and sat down, facing the window. "Yeah," he said in a hushed voice. "Murakami-sensei is coming in a bit."

Silence reigned. Yuzuya folded his arms around himself, watching the breeze stir the trees outside.

"So..." he ventured. "Why were you outside like that? What happened?"
Chiaki was silent for a minute or so, leaning back against his pillow. "I don't really know," he said, his voice slow and quiet. It was hard to lie to Shibata-sensei like this, but he knew that his teacher wouldn't understand or believe the truth. "I had some...some weird dreams. But I don't know why I was out there, on the grass."

He closed his eyes and took his glasses off. Even though he'd only been conscious for such a short time, he still felt exhausted. Somehow, he hadn't gotten any rest the entire night.
Lifting a hand, Yuzuya smoothed Chiaki's bangs back with one gentle hand to check the boy's temperature. "Hmm," he said, quietly. "Yeah, you don't have a fever. Did you hit your head or anything?"

Chiaki's tone was a little suspicious. Yuzuya knew there was probably something Chiaki wasn't telling him. He was dumb but not that dumb.

He couldn't see any bruises, but. "Or. Did someone. Did anyone bother you?" he asked, grave. "If something... happened to you, Aoki-san, I want to know."
Chiaki froze. He really liked Shibata-sensei, but he knew this wasn't anything he could tell him. He just wouldn't understand -- he'd call Chiaki crazy, or worse. Not meeting Yuzuya's eyes, he swallowed, fidgeting with the edge of his comforter.

"I can't -- it's not something I'm..." He struggled to find the words. "I-it's something I'm only c-comfortable talking to Murakami-sensei about."

He felt slightly nauseous again. He really didn't want to talk about this anymore with Yuzuya. Yuzuya was his favorite teacher, but he -- he didn't believe.
Yuzuya folded his hands in his lap, trying his best to appear as though that didn't hurt. "Okay," he said gently. "I guess I can deal with that. As... long as you do talk to somebody about it. And adult, I mean."

He grew quiet, staring at the cloudy sky outside the window.

Silence reigned until there was a brisk knock at the door. "That, that must be Murakami-sensei," Yuzuya murmured, and he got up to go get the door for her.
On the other side of the door, Sumire stood prim and confident. Her black medical bag might have been a little antiquated, but the leather was well-cared for and slightly worn in some places. She offered Yuzuya a small, warm smile. “How is he?” she asked softly.

She stepped inside when Yuzuya allowed her in and straightened her shoulders. “How’re you?” Sumire added, a bit of worry seeping into her tone. It was good that Yuzuya gave so much to the care of his students, and Sumire respected that greatly, but it was also worrisome.
Yuzuya was visibly perturbed at having his status checked by the pretty school nurse. He looked away, his eyes dark. "I'm fine, thank you. Please help Aoki-san," he said. His sore throat felt dry with Sumire's attention on him. Drawing near for the supposed purpose of closing the door, he added in a whisper that Chiaki would not overhear, "I'm very concerned about him. He... says he can't talk to me about it."

The glare that flashed for a moment in Yuzuya's eyes was something he didn't often show. What sort of thing had happened to the boy last night that had made him end up like this? The only possibilities Yuzu could think of were very unsavory. If this really was a case of someone abusing Chiaki, or doing anything strange to him, Shibata Yuzuya was going to make sure whoever had done it would pay dearly.
“I understand,” Sumire murmured. If that was the game he wanted to play, she’d get him later. If anything, the school nurse was a patient creature. The door clicked behind her, and Yuzuya was gone, leaving her alone with Chiaki. Sumire exhaled shallowly, and offered the boy a warm, comforting smile. Her black medical bag was put on his neat desk, Sumire removed a pair of latex gloves and she pulled her stethoscope out. She warmed the flat diaphragm with her breath; nothing was worse than a surprise attack with a cold stethoscope.

Dealing with Chiaki always made Sumire’s chest hurt in an especially keen way. Not only as his school nurse, but also as a mother. Even if she hadn’t been a mother properly for Kouya. She sat on the edge of the bed and smiled. “I believe we know this routine well enough, Chiaki-kun. Breathe in,” she murmured as she slid the warmed diaphragm up the back of his shirt. “And out. Very nice. Once more. And out.” She pulled the diaphragm out and took the earpieces of her stethoscope out. “So, then, Chiaki-kun, what is it you wanted to talk to me about?” The stethoscope was put in her bag and a tongue depressor removed.
Chiaki pulled his shirt back down, fixing it, and shivered a little. "I, um..." He cast a nervous look at the door, as if worried that Yuzuya would be able to hear him out in the hallway. "I was attacked by a ghost last night," he said, quietly. "I, um...I-I know it wasn't a good idea, but -- I went looking for m-my mom's ghost. She came here, and I was going to try to get her to go home, but..." He swallowed, finding his mouth dry, and reached for the glass of water he always kept by his bed. "Something's happened to her. She wasn't...like herself." He was silent for a moment.

"I hope Shibata-sensei's not upset. I didn't think he'd believe me about this kind of thing..."
“Well… as long you realize that it wasn’t a good idea. Chiaki-kun,” Sumire sighed and wondered if the seals she’d carefully placed around the school before the year had begun were fading faster than usual. “You know this campus can be very dangerous at night,” or during the day, but that closet was another story in general. “So I want you to promise me that you won’t go out again.”

Sumire smoothed his hair back, and smiled. “Don’t worry. If there’s something wrong with your mother, maybe you can go to the shrine and pray for her. I’m sure that there’s a way to make her… better.” Really a mother ghost that was so attached to her son in such a sick, sick way made Sumire’s skin crawl. What happened to the dead letting go and crossing over to the other side? “Now, open your mouth. You were out in that grass all night, if I’m to believe Shibata-sensei correctly, and no doubt you’ve probably brushed up against a cold.” And spiritual draining, that was clear as day. But it would be alright. She would make it so.

As she looked around his mouth with her penlight and tongue depressor, Sumire added, “And he is worried. But… there are some things that he’ll probably never believe.”
Chiaki managed not to cough in Sumire's face as she examined his throat. Rubbing under his neck with one hand when she was done, he sat back. "S-so...I did the right thing by only telling you, right, Murakami-sensei?"

He wanted to promise her that he wouldn't do it again, but he knew he couldn't. Something had to be done about his mother. What if she came after him next time? What if...the wards on his room broke? Something had to be done about his mother's ghost, and he thought he knew what. His gut twisted uncomfortably.

"Um...what are you going to tell Shibata-sensei?"
“A little inflamed,” Sumire murmured to herself as she disposed of the tongue depressor and her gloves in a bright red biohazard bag. “I think it was right of you to tell me, yes.” She smiled at him again. “I’m going to tell Shibata-sensei that you were sleep-walking. Really, considering you were outside, and there’s been so much activity recently, he should find that to be a perfectly reasonable and logical estimation.

“For you, however, I am proscribing bedrest and lots of warm things. You’ve managed to catch another cold.” Sumire stood up and smoothed an imagined wrinkle in her skirt. “I’ll come back to check on you. And give you something to help you rest.”
Another cold? Chiaki had assumed the throwing up and chills to be associated with the ghost attack from the previous night, but it was no surprise. And he trusted Murakami-sensei's judgment.

"Th-thank you," he said quietly, a tiny smile breaching the solemn guard on his pale face. "For everything, Murakami-sensei."
Sumire waved a hand, brushing off the thanks, "Chiaki-kun, it's my duty and pleasure to make sure you're well." Truth be told, the boy could probably use a vitamin regimen and several more spells of protection than the measly, apprentice shields she felt around his room.

This school was so dark sometimes, and made Sumire's heart break each time she had to put up a new barrier. "I'll go and get Shibata-sensei, if you'd like, and get going myself."
Chiaki nodded slowly, resting back against his pillow. "Okay. Thank you, Murakami-sensei." He knew he'd said it a million times,

She was such a kind lady -- along with Shibata-sensei and Kasuga-san, one of the people who had showed him the most kindness here at school. He hoped Yuzuya would believe her explanation. He wanted to avoid as much tension between himself and his favorite teacher as much as possible.