"Natsuo-kun, what are you doing?" Youji asked sitting down beside his one-eyed partner. Said partner was busy stringing a seashell together with a few other items he had collected that day on the beach.
"Making a magic necklace." Natsuo answered calmly. "Isn't it cute!" he smiled. Examining the necklace he stood up and exclaimed, "It only needs one more item!"
"Where did you get the directions for this thing?" Youji asked taking the necklace. It was strung together with seaweed, it had a seashell, a horseshoe shaped rock, a dead dried fish, a button, and a piece of bark. To Youji it seemed anything but cute, but he wouldn't tell Natsuo that.
"Soubi." he answered shortly taking the necklace back. Youji remembered him saying something about a magic necklace, right after Natsuo tripped Ritsuka for the third time that day. Youji wasn't paying attention, so when Natsuo disappeared, he played in the ocean with Ritsuka and Yuiko.
"Oh! Well what's the last thing?" he asked, curiosity sparked.
"A candle!" Natsuo laughed. The two of them walked along the beach looking for the illusive item. It seemed hopeless to Youji, after all who would bring a candle to the beach?
"Natsuo-kun, what does the magic necklace do?" he asked.
"It grants the wearer one wish!" He smiled happily.
"Well, what are you going to wish for?" Youji smiled evilly. He could think of lots of things to wish for. Most of them involved lots of fun for him and Natsuo, lots of pain for everyone else.
Natsuo looked shocked. "If I tell anyone then it won't come true!"
"You can tell me! Besides that's only true for shooting stars and birthday candles!" Youji pouted. Natsuo did not look convinced.
"Hmm... guess." Youji blinked for a second.
"No." Natsuo's face went flat. "Not even close."
"Hmm... give me a hint!" Youji commanded. Natsuo thought for a moment.
"Zero." Natsuo smirked; Youji would never be able to guess.
"What kind of clue is that? It's our name. Not a clue!" Youji all but shouted.
"Is too!" Natsuo laughed at Youji's angry face. "You're cute when you’re angry."
"I'm cute when I'm not too." Youji agreed. He had finally had enough of the guessing game; "tell me!" he yelled hitting Natsuo with his stuffed bear.
"What do you mean that? You want the bear?" Youji blinked confused.
"No! I want to feel that." Youji stared at him as though he'd grown another head.
"You want to feel the bear?"
"Yes! Wait- no!" Natsuo sighed. This was going to be harder than he thought.
"Then what?" Youji inquired. It wasn't like Natsuo to be so confusing.
"I want to feel you hit me with the bear. You know... pain." Natsuo explained softly.
"Are you feeling okay?" Youji asked grabbing for Natsuo's wrist to take his pulse. He found it to be normal enough. "Why would you want that?"
"Soubi said that, it's impossible for someone who knows pain to lose to someone who doesn't." Natsuo flicked Youji in the head. "Besides, aren't you even a little curious about how that felt?"
"Not particularly." Youji sighed. Natsuo was serious; there was nothing Youji could say to change his mind about it. "Let's find that stupid candle then."
They walked in silence until, "Pleasure is the opposite of pain, right?" Youji asked.
"Yeah, so?" Natsuo responded, looking at Youji through the corner of his eye.
"So, they say that you can't really appreciate something until you've experienced its opposite." Youji explained in a factual tone.
"Who's 'they'?" Natsuo inquired.
"You know, they!" Youji said, desperately waving his hands in the air to get his point across.
"Oh, they. What about masochists?" Natsuo wondered.
"What about them?"
"Their pleasure is pain."
"Well, I don't think you'd be a masochist. So why worry about?"
"Good point. I'm just wondering what I'll like. When I can feel pain." Natsuo explained choppily.
"Oh." An awkward silence fell on the duo. "I think you'll like soft things." Youji piped when the silence had become too much for him to bear.
"Soft things?" he took a minute to think about it before replying. "Yeah! Lot's of cute things are supposed to be soft." He nodded his head enthusiasticly in agreement.
"Hey, you know what? I'm gonna ask the magic necklace to make you feel too!"
"Really!" Youji asked excitedly. At first it had sounded like a dumb idea, but after thinking about it, it sounded kind of fun.
Interupting their conversation, a young woman giggled rambuctiously. Their heads flipped around to see a young couple sitting on a picnic blanket. The two had been so busy discussing the pro side to pain that, they hadn't noticed them. The young man pulled a boltle of wine out of the picnic basket and proceded to pour two glasses. Meanwhile, the young woman had pulled a lighter out of her purse, she took out round black candle and lit it.
"They're annoying." Youji stated staring at the candle.
"Annoying." Natsuo agreed.
"They don't need that candle, the sun's just barely setting. Annoying and wasteful."
"They don't realise they're being wasteful, Youji-kun." He smiled evilly.
"Natsuo-kun, it's our duty to steal that candle."
The poor couple didn't know what them. One minute they were talking to an adorable long haired blonde child, the next all of their food was gone along with their lit candle. Youji and Natsuo retreted to a small alcove, out of sight to anyone who might have been looking for them.
"Wow, this is really good Youji-kun!" Natsuo smiled eating a sandwich with a slice of unknown meat on it. Youji was nibbling on a sandwich comprised of mayonases and tomatoes. Though stealing the couple's food wasn't exactly on the agenda, the boys hadn't eaten any lunch and were hungry.
The reflection of the sun on the water as it was setting, caught Youji's attention. "Hey Natsuo-kun, isn't the sun supposed to hurt your eyes when you look at it directly?"
"Yeah, I guess we'll have to start wearing sunglasses or something. Do you think they make sunglasses for people with one eye?"
"Probably not. But, I'll make you one!" Youji smiled. "So, let's get too it!" he said, tired of waiting. Natsuo tied the candle to the necklace with another piece of seaweed.
"Well put it on!" Youji commanded, growing impatient.
Natsuo put the necklace on and closed his eye. 'I wish Youji and I could feel.' Natsuo thought to himself, how Soubi instructed. It was silent for a moment. Natsuo opened his eye and stared straight at the setting sun.
He felt nothing.