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Friday, October 30th, 2009 11:51 pm
Title: Windows
Author: [personal profile] therobotmuse
Fandom: Original
Characters: Forrest, Chris
Pairing: None
Genre: Character study
Rating: PG-13
Prompt: A sunset @ [ profile] story_lottery
Summary: Forrest has never seen a sunset before.
Spoilers: None
Warning(s): Talk about ghosts and generally the paranormal, mentions of death
Word Count: 1060
Disclaimer: All characters belong to me.
A/N: It's been a long while since I've written original stuff actually. Refreshing. As always, thanks to [ profile] heworedecadance

Forrest had never seen a sunset before. When he first noticed the skies starting to change color, he stopped, looking around, taking it in. From blue to deep purple, reds shining off clouds left over from the day's rain, until the last glow of burnt orange disappeared behind he mountains, the remaining shine lighting the peaks from behind. He stayed there just a bit longer, sitting on a large rock near the side of the road, arms wrapped around his knees.

For the first time, all of his sense were going off - the feeling of the wind curling around him, working its way into his coat and through his fur; the rustling, crinkling of the leaves - the birds had gone silent, having gone to sleep already; the smell of the rain still hung in the air and he was certain he could taste it. And all the colors - he was still trying to learn all of them by sight rather than name.

He let out a sigh, blinking his eyes a couple times, finding that the light was still on his eyelids. He rested his head on his knees, just taking it all in.

"Forrest?" the deep voice that belonged to his father came from behind him.

He opened his eyes and looked up at the man leaning against the fence, tails flicking behind him, and gave him a smile.

Chris smiled back, "What are you doing?"

"I got distracted," Forrest said with a small, sheepish laugh.

Chris' gaze drifted towards the mountains. He gave a small nod.

"Your first sunset," he commented quietly.

Forrest grinned, "Are all of them like that?"

"Sometimes. Depends on the weather."

A silence fell over them then and they stood there a long moment as the world grew dark around them.

Chris let out a breath, "All right, come on. Let's get back before things wake up."

Forrest nodded. He knew his father got anxious with him being out after dark -- it was always worse at night, or really anywhere that shadows out numbered the sun beams. Forrest had learned not to be scared a long time ago, but Chris was still trying to get used to it, even years after the man realized that Forrest had something different about him.

Forrest squeezed his eyes shut for a moment. They hurt a little; the doctor had said he should rest them often the first few days, even though eyes healed quickly. He opened them and blinked a couple times before getting up from his seat.

Chris patted his shoulder, then led him down the road, looking just a little tense - Forrest could feel the nervous energy coming off him. His father was a bit over-protective, he understood that, but it wasn't without reason. Forrest had caused him plenty of trouble even before his seventh birthday, not the mention the war was closing in on the small village.

Things had been different since Aan died. The boy had been a couple years older than Forrest and the son of one of Chris' best friends. It had been a years since Aan was killed, but Forrest knew it still hung over Chris. After it had happened, the man had sat him down and told him how to interact with soldiers, how to respond to them, that he should always carry his ID with him, especially when he went outside the wall. This was, of course, a while after Chris had gotten of the shock of Forrest telling him that he had seen the ghost of the dead boy.

Forrest was too young to remember his father's exact reaction, but he knew he had tried his best to understand, to learn, to adapt. More importantly, he listened. Forrest hadn't talked about it before, not to anyone, not even his real parents - he was closer to this man who had found him than he had ever been to his biological father. He looked back now at how excited he had been to just talk to someone, to tell them what he saw and did, he's really surprised how he didn't scare Chris off. Even now it was obviously an awkward experience for him to listen to Forrest talk about the woman who hung over Aan's father or the child that lingered in the town square.

"Maybe in the morning, you can see your first sunrise," Chris commented idly - he didn't like it when it was too quiet, Forrest had noticed.

"Yeah, sure," Forrest grinned up at him. "If you promise I can go back to sleep afterwards."

The man chuckled, "Yeah, all right. Deal."

Forrest gave a little nod, then took in a deep breath, taking in the evening air. He loved the feeling of the night, the taste of it, the way it stung his lungs just a little. There was so much he had to see, people he had to re-meet and take them in again, places he had gone so many times before and see them for the first time. He didn't want to sleep, he just wanted to get out and do it all now.

He let the breath out. The night was starting to come alive - flashes if lights down the road, figures peaking out from behind the trees. And then there was so much that he could see that he would never be able to show anyone else. There was another world that he had a window into and it was full of fantastic and terrifying things, most of which were beyond words to describe. Sometimes his father got a glimpse at the world Forrest saw. That was the reason Chris was hurrying him along back to the house now.

"How does it compare?" Chris ask finally.

Forrest raised an eyebrow, "What? To what I was imagining?"

He shook his head a little, " whatever it is you see." He waved his hand a little.

"Oh." Forrest thought for a moment. "It...doesn't really. I mean, they're so different from each other. There's no way to compare them."

Chris let out a short breath, "Yeah. Right." There was a pause as they turned towards the house, then he said in a low voice, "I can't even imagine."

Forrest's ears went back briefly. He almost sounded...sad? He...his father was always so...not scared really, but worried about the things that Forrest would tell him or the rare occasion he would see them himself. Maybe it was the unknown that was the frightening part. Maybe he...Chris didn't think he was a good father - they'd had plenty of late night conversations about it - Maybe he felt like if he could see what Forrest saw he'd somehow be a better parent.

"What's your favorite place in town?" Forrest asked.

Chris hesitated a bit, looking surprised by the question, "I... well, it's not actually in town."

"I want to see it," he stated firmly.

Chris gave a small smile, "All right. Tomorrow I'll show you."


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