Summary: "IIt was stupid, and it seemed the stupider the older he got, but he kept doing it anyway."
Notes: I actually folded a bunch of paper stars while writing this. :3 I don't have enough to make a thousand, though. This is just something cute I wrote on the spur of the moment.
"What the hell are those, you creep?"
It was late at night, and the two of them were sitting up in the room that the scientists had set up as their bedroom. Alma had a jar in his lap, the bottom of it filled with little bits of folded paper, and there were some strips of paper on the bed next to him. One strip was in his hands, and the boy was folding it up with a serious expression, thick eyebrows pressed together. At the sound of his "friend's" voice, he looked up with one of the trademark grins that made Yu want to break his jaw.
"They're paper stars."
"I can see that, idiot." Yu crossed his arms angrily and looked away. "I meant why."
"Well, Edgar told me that if you fold a thousand of them, you can get a wished granted."
"That's paper cranes, dumbass."
"Whatever." Alma was too tired to pick a fight, obviously. Finishing up his star, he curled the rest of the strips up and put them in the jar. Yu snorted.
"Why don't you make them all at once, then?"
"If you make more than one each day, it ruins the magic." Screwing the lid of the jar on, Alma set it off to the side and curled up under his blankets. Rolling his eyes, Yu flopped back onto his bed and did the same.
They didn't speak of it again, but every night before they fell asleep, Alma dug out the jar and folded up another little wishing star.
It was the day after the incident. That was what all the scientists were calling it – none of them had even said Alma's name in last few hours that Yu had been conscious to hear. Most of the Asia Branch was in a state of complete disarray, so after telling him that he was to be moved to Headquarters to train as a proper Exorcist, they'd pretty much left Yu alone.
He'd gone back to his and Alma's room, the only one in that portion of the Branch that didn't need to be washed of blood, and curled up on the bed. He didn't cry and he didn't look at Alma's bed; he just sat and stared at the door over his knees, which hadn't even had the decency to form scars from the fight.
After a long while, he got up, and reached over for the jar of little stars. One for every day that they'd been together... Yu gritted his teeth and undid the lid, pulling out a strip of paper – unlike Alma, who'd always spent several minutes deciding what color of paper to use, Yu just grabbed one. He struggled with the strip for a bit, before finally managing to produce a slightly lopsided star, and he dropped it into the jar with the others. Next to Alma's near-perfect collection, it looked even worse. Yu glared at it before screwing the lid back on.
It was stupid, but he took the jar with him to the Order, it and the damned Innocence sword his only possessions. When he arrived there, at the place with the scared little girl Exorcist and her crazy brother, he hid the jar under his bed, and never mentioned it to anyone.
It would ruin the magic, after all, if he told anyone his wish.
Everytime he thought of Alma, Kanda went to his room, pulled out the jar, and folded another little star. If he was on mission, he put the star in his pocket, and added it to the jar when he got home. It was stupid, and it seemed the stupider the older he got, but he kept doing it anyway.
Martel. Three stars, one for each day of the doll's singing, because it reminded him of the first night after the synchro testing, when the pain had kept him from sleeping, and Alma had to tried sing him a lullaby with notes too high for his voice to hit. Edo. A whole pocket full of stars, collected over his journey, one for every time Tiedoll said that he needed to make friends, one for every time he'd died in the fight with the Noah. A star for the Fourteenth Noah, because Kanda was damned to lose anyone he let into his life, wasn't he? A star when they brought back the tiny bratty new Exorcist, Timothy, because the kid's attitude reminded him of Alma, just a little, although thankfully Alma had never whined that much. Always smiling, that idiot, even when he was in pain.
One thousand stars, one thousand little things. Kanda didn't smile as he closed up the jar for the last time and slid it under his bed, but he lay awake staring at the ceiling for a long time. For all the years he'd spent on the project, he still didn't know which person he wished for, him or her.
It wasn't until that moment, rubbing his face where the stupid beansprout had punched him out of his memories, that Kanda realized that he'd miscounted. Alma hadn't been able to make a star on that day, their last day together, so he was one short.
It turned out that it didn't matter. In the end, he'd gotten both of his wishes at the same time.