" She had a seizure right in front of me, "
the words ring gently in the back of his mind ... that day still ... can't be forgotten ... not even in the midst of the small talk and the television whispering through the small cafe. " Hoy, kid. You alright? " the owner of the cafe is leaning in a bit to see the solemn look on his face only to find that he's lightened up after being called on. " Oh, yes. I'm sorry, I was ... thinking about something. " eyes rove over to the painting .. the real " sayuri" in the corner of the room. its soft presence somehow brings him back to a reality where things will be fine and he won't be as dependent as he tends to be. flustering as it might have been this last year or two, he's finally onto something. the years as phantom thieves, and his other self coming out of that inextinguishable rush of emotions ... things he believes strongly in and what might come of the unknown afterwards. this painting, now knowing what it symbolizes ... who it is ... and the reason it had been brought into existence makes him wonder what could have been and what would have been different up to now?
the owner is talking to him, giving him some kind of lecture, but yusuke isn't paying it much mind. in fact, he's drowned out the entire conversation and .. poor soujirou-san probably knows it. the white noise that now surrounds him is nothing more than silence. his mother ... he doesn't remember her name ... doesn't remember what she sounded like ... absolutely nothing about her. being taken in at the tender age of three by a man who had thought it best to use the painting for his own after she had possibly suffocated in the midst of her seizure .. how weak she was and had him despite that. she even wanted to make a self-portrait out of it. oh, well ... he muses wuietly, breaking away from the painting and settling on staring into his coffee cup which is now empty. " Are you even listening ... ? Geez... you kids never learn anything if you keep spacking out like that. " yusuke glances up from the cup and offers soujirou-san a smile. " I have a lot on my mind ... I'm going to be close, but Leblanc is going to be a ways away. My fare will be even more expensive. " the inaudible sigh comes from the old man while he waves off the bill and takes his cup to make him some more coffee.
" --gedy is apparently here in Shibuya, Goro Akechi is now parted ways with us. The grieving city is mourning the loss of the young man and his heart set on pursuing justice for all while ... " oh, right ... that's something he hadn't forgotten about ... simply wanted to. that outburst ... they covered the story, of course. it's a bit infuriating knowing exactly what happened and why he's gone. that sacrifice ... their team won't forget it, and he'll make a dedication to it eventually. he was going to get together with the rest of the group so discuss exactly what they wanted him to paint ... ' crow ' ... probably birds ... he wants to draw some crows in it. they're a symbol of bad luck, if he remembers right. bad luck indeed, akechi was quite unfortunate in his endeavours, but it's all over and there's nothing else to be done. " Thank you ... I couldn't ask for a better barista. " the cup is settled in front of him as he smiles politely before fixating on the television and the image of their former comrade.
... yes ... some birds ought to suffice ... and maybe whatever else might symbolize him with. something he can put together for them in hopes that it'll ease the burden of their own sorrows along with their knowledge of the real tragedy. it's so funny how people tend to cover things up that might sound absolutely ludicrous. " Soujirou-san ... do you tink Akechi-kun was someone to be admired? " a strange question to pose, but knowing his past makes him sympathize ... the question goes unheard as they both stare at the screen ... perhaps it was a stupid question after all. they all know too well bottling up the happenings of the past will only prove useless in the end. if he's learned anything from the alst two years, it's definitely something like that. the past will only hold someone back, and that includes himself. of course ... that's what she was probably trying to say, too. not to let the past hold her back ... one last look at the "sayuri" and yusuke finishes his coffee before it gets too cold for his liking. funnily enough, he's not too worried about leaving the thing behind that forced him to stand up and pursue what he's always wanted to begin with.
that true beauty. the one thing he's so far from but he can just barely touch it now that this horrible art block is something of the past. for now, anyway. with a small sigh, he looks down at his empty cup to smile vaguely. he's almost certain that this is the road to take and his bright future lies ahead with a stroke of his brush to the surface of an empty canvas that he calls his story. he'll paint his woes t rend them defenseness, bring people peace with his happiness ... his worries when it roughts him so, and perhaps even make a self-portrait when the time comes. closing his eyes for a brief moment, yusuke smiles genuinely. " Perhaps this was how it was meant to be in the first place ... as melancholy as that sounds, I'm rather grateful for the outcome ...
" soujirou, who has no idea what he's talking about only offers him the faint hint of confusion before yusuke slides off of the tall bar chair.
" Thank you, Soujirou-san. I'm going upstairs, now ... I ... should probably see if he's ready to go. "
padding towards the stairs, yusuke slowly ascends to the top floor where he finds a cat sitting near the entrance ... morgana? no, it can't be .. it must be a new cat. he reaches out to pet it, the kitten reciprocating the attention by leaning into his hand ... right, morgana isn't here anymore, either. the last he remembers is their friend giving them well wishes before he left. " Hey, Yusuke. "
yusuke smiles quickly before he lifts the cat into his arms. " I'm glad to see you're well, shall we go?
" a nod from their leader and they're both down and out of leblanc ... they're meeting the rest of the phantom thieves at the train station for a little get together at dome town. the small wash of emotions that peek forth in his mind make him wonder what they're doing now. before, they had gotten together in a simple area and changed hearts. although yusuke doesn't know the origin of where and why it started, he'd become one of them when madarame had taken a hold of his talents. not a day goes by that he forgets the persistence of the three who asked him personal questions... only to make him realize that they'd all been true.
even if he hadn't wanted it at first, he was glad that it happened. glad that he'd gone in with ann and saw with his own eyes the seeds that madarame had sewn. bloody flowers at his feet and the ask that he had buried them in. the bile he had defended with his heart ... he had gotten the truth from his shadow, the other
madarame that had been distorted by his desires along with the "sayuri" that he had kept closely to himself as a means of salvaging his wealth. a despicable man that ruled the art world .. something he never deserved in the first place. that was when the pain started. that searing burn all through his skull along with whatever pure emotion that had burst forth to allow his persona to accompany him. yes, he heard goemon in that moment when shadow madarame had told him everything ... with no hesitation. he'd never forget that feeling, that surge of raw power and the pain that had subsided to pave the way for the pain he was about to unleash on this so-called "artist". yes ... that was it ... they'd pursued madarame afterwards using the metanav and the rest was history. their plan was thwarted with a fake painting but in the end ... they had defeated the shadow with himself at the helm in whether he lived or died ... and spared him to atone for his sins.
letting his mother die... and for what
... a stupid self-portrait that was his source of income for the last ten years or so ... ? ridiculous. he'd cherished that painting for his whole life, looking up to it as a saviour and to be tarnished by one single man and his selfishness. was there no end to it ... ? the results had been more than a trainwreck, he waited for days and keeping the party occupied with his condition ... and when the time arose that madarame had suggested a press conference? the entire art world shook in disbelief. the man himself confessed his crimes and yusuke couldn't be happier for in that moment he had done something to ease those who had fell victim to it all. the only problem was looking for a place to live, a place he cold work in peace. all in all, it ended up being the school dorms. funnily enough, he chose to stay, chose to help others who had been victims ... makoto and the drug dealer who was demanding money from them ... futaba and the guilt in her heart ... and while haru wasn't necessarily awakened because of them, she did possess the power with her persona. all of them together had been branded phantom thieves as a team with morgana as their teacher. funnily enough, this also opened the doors to a new comrade named akechi goro ... who had risked his life to save them during a heist in the cruise ship.
... his own father's heart. shido. the odd circumstances that shido had with their leader was something they all wanted to assist in, their leader had done so much for them. when the time came, they all agreed to help him in his endeavours to change his heart as well. although it seemed over ... it was only the beginning. a god had distorted the world and they'd been thrust into the heart of mementos to deal with the heart of man itself
. without a real plan, they were cast away and sent into a strange place. how could he forget the chains that bound him in the velvet room ... the helplessness that he experienced and the weak feeling that had overcome him. once again, it was his leader and his words that eased the burden on his heart and the hearts of everyone else. " One last heist, "
he said .. before they set out to fight a god of a name he can't pronounce... yaldabaoth, that gigantic monster sitting on top of the mementos-looking city that it had taken over. it was almsot laughable how much they'd done in that time and to think one measley god would stop them.
oh, but he couldn't forget satanael ... the one saving grace that had come from he heart of their leader ... a breathtaking sight even after their near destruction ... the most powerful force he had ever seen in his life ... the bright lights and clash between two immense powers. it was their last chance ... that somehow worked. could a persona be that huge ... ? none of them still don't know what that massive force was, then it was over just like that. there were no opposing gods, no shadows, no bloody streets or pulsing green atmosphere to be seen. just a simple blue sky and the inhabitants in it that had seen absolutely nothing out of the ordinary ...when asked, his leader couldn't produce the same power twice and said so himself after the event ... he wanted to say something else, but that's all it was. after morgana regained his memories, he had disappeared as well ... and that left naught but the trained phantom thieves and one missing party member who was all over the news.
" We're here, "
their leader speaks suddenly, yusuke having been daydreaming about his comrades for the lat few minutes he'd been on the monorail. shibuya station is where they were to meet today with everyone packed and ready to go to the other side of town. the group is already together sans the two of them who quickly leave the crowded train. " We should get going ... Come on, Yusuke. "
" Right ... To Dome Town it is.