Completely ripped off Monnie's Shishido-gen fic Going Somewhere. It's probably better to read her fic first because I make a lot of weird references to it.

Broken Compass
by Bing

this is not a matter of forgetting.

[i. rewind]

somewhere in another era, his hair had reached
past the shoulders and softened the curve of
his neck, sinking down twin blades that were not
sharp enough for his eyes. the authorities told him
it was a color meant for tragedies spliced from
moral philosophies, but all he remembers is static
tracing the ceiling above his bed at night, digging
deep behind his ears and infecting his dreams.

waking up was a one-way mirror, one side dirty
with assumption, the other a loop through his days.
labeling himself the general population, he spelled out
winner on the wooden desks in the empty classrooms,
the underside of his arm smudging the slow turn
of the n's, his hair then brushing the errors away.
he drank his independence after games, mixing it
with the sweat on his hands and the blood pounding
through the roof of his mouth, and afterwards,
the heated liquid would overflow the edges of his lips,
printings its victories over the familiar white skin.

[ii. fast forward]

his fingers are too long for his palms, and when he
backtracks his way up the naked line of his jaw, he gets lost
at the junction between his earlobe and temple.
there are no more road signs this far into the journey,
and no other way to go except forward, with the sun
burning itself into a tattoo that he carries everywhere.

empty classrooms do not exist anymore. independence does not
offer itself in the strings of his rackets, and when he starts
to learn again, he can't think past his old handwriting, written
during a time where his conscience hid in the loop of his mind.

[iii. pause]

now, he regrets.

glory days only taste bitter inside his mouth.

[iv. replay]

friendship burns,
but in a rather different way than independence or sun;
he discovers this uncomfortably on a u-turn at his scalp,
heading down the nape of his neck, reliability singing over
the scars on his knees, not yet healed and still warm
to the touch. friendship burns a little like victory, only
he doesn't have to fight for breath at the door of his throat,
and when he intakes air, it feels there are deserted tennis courts
inside his rib cage, open and smooth and ready for him to conquer.

he sleeps at night again, and there is no longer static circling
the lines of his body, only clean spaces where his hair used to be,
falling over the cliff of his shoulders, so long, so long, that he
doesn't even remember the sound of it anymore.

[v. stop]

this is not a matter of forgetting.

this is a matter of changing direction.

The End

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