Saigo no Love SongNo one knew that that song didn’t belong to Yamapi.
The Last Love Song
The Last Love Song
No one, except for the song writer, Yamapi, a few staffs, and the original owner of the song himself:
The curtain call announcement resonates
I’m sure you didn’t come back out
Back when we promised about how we
Didn’t believe this day would come
I loved that figure of yours when you tried your best for the sake of your precious dreams
Isaid “I’ll support you no matter when”
It was a habit, so I blame you as you out on a journey
I think I would have felt happier if I haven’t had fallen in love
That love song makes my heart warmer
Time and time again when I listened with you, the words pierce me
The song is too sad to listen to all alone…
Yamapi remembered the sweet voice slightly on the raspy side singing softly alone in the empty practice room.
It was getting dark, and Yamapi remembered how surprised he was seeing the lights still on from inside KAT-TUN’s practice room.
He remembered how petite the slender figure looked through the little crack of the unsealed door.
He remembered how shaky the soft voice sounded.
He also remembered how he thought that stupid song fitted Kazuya perfectly.
Yamapi closed his eyes and leaned on the wall next to the door. He listened to the voice inside, hearing how it trembles as the person inside desperately tried to finish the song. The thought of rushing in to pull the smaller boy into his arms and comforting the other person crossed his mind more than once, but every time Yamapi would remind himself that he can’t.
How can he when he’s nothing more than just a friend?
Nothing but a friend… and the best friend of the person Kazuya loves with all his heart.
The person Kazuya loves so dearly that he wanted to sing this stupid song for even if it drives him to the verge of tears…
The more Yamapi listened, the shakier Kazuya’s voice seemed to be. He heard the younger boy’s breathing became hitched, and Yamapi felt a tight squeeze in his heart so deeply that it all became numb.
Yamapi wanted to pull that small figure in to his arms, he wanted to shout out all of this disclosed feelings inside; he wanted that person in the practice room to finally realize that Yamapi is right here.
Here, like he has always been, and probably where he will always be.
This space here where it is close enough to see and be seen, but too far to do anything more than that.
It’s just a god-damned space Yamapi doesn’t want at all, not when his heart yearns for more.
Even though he knows perfectly well that it’s impossible to even wish.
The trembling singing became even more cracked, and Yamapi’s patience crumbled down when he heard a quiet sob follow through.
Before he knew it, his hands were already out and around the youngest KAT-TUN member, pulling the soft limbs into his chest...
Kazuya tensed up in his embrace, but then the younger man relaxed when he realized that the person in front of him was just Yamapi.
Kazuya curled into the warm body and cried even harder when Yamapi pulled him in closer.
No one said anything, and Kazuya let his tears flowed down Yamapi’s designer shirt, while Yamapi himself tightened his hug and stood still, offering a silent shoulder.
Of course, Yamapi can be whatever Kazuya wants.
Whether if it is a co-worker, a friend, a shoulder to cry on for a night,… no matter what it is, if Kazuya wants it then Yamapi is more than willing to play the part.
Yamapi let his hand moved up from the slim waist as he caressed the strands of honey-colored hair huddled near the crook of his neck; his nose took in a whiff of fruity shampoo. Everything reminded Yamapi of how beautiful the man in his arms is, and also how this angelic creature is not his.
It hurt like hell, but it also really didn’t matter. Like he said, whatever Kazuya wants, Yamapi is more than willing to comply.
Soon the sobbing ceased to a stop, but Yamapi still didn’t let go, and Kazuya didn’t move away.
“Were you listening to my song?” The words were mumbled against Yamapi’s chest. NEW’s leader hummed back an answer, and Kazuya asked another question back.
“How long were you listening?”
“Just a while… maybe from the beginning..”
“Hmm..” Kazuya’s pale hands left its owner’s sides and reached up to wrap around Yamapi’s body loosely. Yamapi could feel his heart beating harder and he wondered if the other person could feel it too.
“Thanks. Do you like it? This song,” Kazuya smoothly moved away from his arms. Yamapi saw how Kazuya was trying to get out of the contact and slowly let go.
“It was good. It suits you.”
“Desu yo ne,” Yamapi watched the KAT-TUN member’s lips crafted a small smile, “I thought so too. When I first heard it I decided right away that this is going to be my new solo song.”
“It is perfect isn’t it? It suits everything so perfectly… my thoughts, my feelings… all of that is so much like what is written in the lyrics that for a second there I actually thought that Johnny-san might have hired someone to write out a song based on my life,” Kazuya laughed, but there was so much emotion behind it that Yamapi could not bring himself to laugh along. Before he can think straight, Yamapi reached out and cupped a side of Kazuya’s face with his hand. The shorter man smiled sweetly and eyed Yamapi through his lashes.
“Because I’ve never said it… Stuff like this, I don’t know how to express in words… That’s why I thought that maybe if I sing it out in a song, then he’ll hear it. Then maybe he’ll understand how I feel… that I’m not okay at all.”
“Do you know? When Jin decided to leave he didn’t say a word to me, and I didn’t say anything to him too. We saw each other every day, but we never bring it up. A part of me wanted to believe that if we don’t talk about it then it’ll go away, but of course, life’s tougher than that,” The laugh came back again, and Yamapi resisted the urge to hold the other man tight again.
“…In the end Jin left, and I still haven’t said anything. I didn’t even went to the airport.”
“In the end we broke up without neither of us saying a word… and now when I decided to speak through a song I just have to get all emotional like a pregnant woman and can’t finish the song..”
“This wasn’t even my first practice. I’ve tried for what seems to be like forever, but I can never finish it,” Kazuya placed a soft smile on his lips; his smaller hands lay on top of Yamapi’s resting on his cheek before he pulled Yamapi’s hand away gently.
“…seems like it’s impossible already. I have to go into recording in a few days, and I can’t record if things are still like this. I already planned to find a new song if I can’t sing this song by today.”
Yamapi watched as Kazuya went around the room, collecting his belongings before stuffing everything in a bag in front of the mirror. The prettily crafted lips still moved around as the younger man speaks. When Kazuya finished packing, he stood in front of Yamapi once again.
“Thank you, Yamapi. Thanks for being here,” The pretty man smiled. Yamapi didn’t know if Kazuya’s “here” is the same as Yamapi’s meaning of “here” or not, but he smiled back and nodded.
“I’ve never left anyway.”
The other man’s eyes showed confusion, but if Kazuya was concerned about anything he didn’t say.
“I’ll see you later, Yamapi.”
Kazuya graced him with that sweet smile of his again before walking out of the room, leaving Yamapi alone in his same spot with a wrinkled sheet of music on the floor.
Saigo no Love Song
The Last Love Song
If it was Kazuya’s desire, Yamapi can be anything the younger man wants him to be.
Whether if it is a co-worker, a friend, a simple shoulder..
..or even a voice
For Kazuya, Yamapi can be anything.
Anything… including Kazuya’s voice.
No one knew that that song wasn’t originally Yamapi’s
Those who knew were only the writer, whom the staff contacted back when they confirmed that they wanted to use the song,
the original owner like Kamenashi Kazuya,
and the new owner like Yamashia Tomohisa…
Kazuya still remembered vividly how surprise he felt when he heard that Yamapi will sing that song.
He still remembered the second he heard the news for the first time.
He remembered that it was noon, the busiest time in the Jimusho.
He remembered standing in the narrow elevator between Junno and Koki as a couple of people, Nishikido Ryo and Koyama Keiichiro, walked briskly into the elevator.
“Ah.. seshiburi! It’s been a while ne, Nishikido-kun,” Junno, always full of energy, chirped at the newcomers. The person working so long in Osaka just nodded his greetings before stepping into the elevator and pressing for the 4th floor.
“Are NEWS practicing today?” Kazuya turned to Koyama instead when Ryo still looked half-asleep and didn’t seem to be in a mood for small talk, which Koyama knew perfectly and offered an apologetic smile for KAT-TUN with a nod.
“Yeah… it’s more like a meeting though, since everyone is so busy these days, we’re just trying to figure out a schedule that would work for everyone.”
“That’s tough ne, Koyama-kun” Koki commented. Koyama laughed.
“Sou, but KAT-TUN is like that too ne; everyone is working really hard.”
A couple of small talk and polite sentences later, a beep rang out of Koyama’s phone and the guy from Osaka who stayed quiet all this time let out a grunt, catching everyone’s attention. Ryo glanced down at his phone and sighed like he was bored.
“Pi sent a mail,” Ryo told Koyama who was in the middle of fishing for his cell in random pockets, “He said he’ll be late. He has to record this new song or something.”
“Eh?” Koyama knitted his eyebrows, “For his solo album? I thought he had finished recording all the songs last week already”
Ryo just shrugged back indicating that he knows nothing,
“Yeah, but he said he wants to change one of the songs for a new one, so he’s in a hurry trying to record it.”
“I wonder what song it is… Yamapi’s going into so much trouble just to add it in,” Koyama mused.
“I’m going to mail back and ask,” Ryo punch in some buttons before his cell beeps almost immediately.
“Pi said he took out one of the songs he had written himself and add in a new song called…” The NEWS and Kanjani 8 member peered down at the small letters in his cell.
“..Saigo no Love Song”
Kazuya turned to look at the speaker’s face while he was busy typing something back.
“What was the name again, Ryo-chan?”
“Hmm?” Ryo mumbled back without glancing up, “Saigo no Love Song. What about it?”
“N.. no, nothing,” Kazuya answered in a voice he didn’t recognized. Next to him, Koki raised his eyebrows and Junno, famous for being KY, opened his mouth and asked,
“Eh? Wasn’t Kazuya’s sol-”
“Junno,” Koki called out with a warning tone, causing the guy speaking to shut up most efficiently. The two NEWS members shot them a confused look, and Kazuya could only thank the universe when the elevator stopped at their floor. KAT-TUN said their goodbyes, and as they walked along the halls in such uncomfortable silence, Junno decided that the ban for speaking should be lifted.
“…That song. Wasn’t it Kazuya’s old solo song?”
“Yes,” The previous owner answered back quietly. Kazuya sensed the warmth from Koki’s fingertips as the rapper reached out for his hand, and Kazuya offered a smile.
“Yamapi heard me practicing the other day; he must’ve liked it.”
His other two friends stayed quiet. For a while, the only sounds they heard were the sounds of their footsteps, and Koki started the conversation slowly, carefully selecting and arranging his words.
“…Yamapi’s a good guy.”
“Hmm,” The group’s baby hummed back; it was like signaling Koki the green light and he continued.
“I think he’s doing this for you.”
“He’s doing this for you.”
After letting Koki talk for a few minutes, Junno started laughing. His big hands playfully slapped down the rapper’s shoulder.
“I think Kazuya got it,” The Prince of Smiles turned and smiled brilliantly at Kazuya, “Don’t forget to thank Yamapi ne, Kazuya.”
Kazuya decided to do as Junno told him, but because of their hectic schedules and he didn’t know when was the next time they’ll meet, his thanks was given through a mail instead.
‘I heard from Ryo-chan that Yamapi is using “Saigo no Love Song”?’
Yamapi replied within less a minute.
Kazuya looked at the one-word reply, amused, and he was about to reply when his cell vibrated and alerted him of a new mail. Kazuya opened it and found out that Yamapi sent him another text.
‘Sorry for not telling you first.
Is Kazuya angry?’
‘No, not angry. I just want to thank you.’
‘For stealing your solo?’
‘For doing this for me’
When Kazuya texted him that, Yamapi stopped replying for several minutes. The KAT-TUN member thought Yamapi wouldn’t reply anymore and their conversation would end like that, but almost five minutes later Kazuya’s phone vibrated again.
‘If it makes Kazuya happy then you’re welcome’
Yamapi knew that Jin has heard his new song when the solo artist called across the continents from L.A.
“Pi, where’s that song you wrote? The onone called Love Rhythm that you sent me the demo last time. I really want to hear it, why don’t you put it in?” Jin’s husky voice asked for the song that Yamapi arranged and wrote himself. Jin’s best friend even sent him the demo, asking for suggestions, which he gave and helped arranged with Yamapi. When Yamapi’s album came out, he was really excited to hear this song the most, but his best friend didn’t even put it in the album.
“I replaced it with a new song.”
“Saigo no Love Song? Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s a great song and everything, but I still can’t believe it. You spent so much time making that song, giving it your all, and now you’re just replacing your handiwork with someone else’s? No matter how amazingly touching someone’s song is, I can’t imagine me pulling out my own song just to make room for it,” Jin kept complaining on and on so fast that Yamapi didn’t know when to interrupt.
“I still don’t know what came into you. You suddenly changed a song, and the genres aren’t even the same… Did you hit your head or fell down the stairs before recording?”
“Jin,” Yamapi interrupted exactly between the words “the” and “stairs”, but the other man just kept on babbling, not hearing the interruption.
“I changed the songs because of Kazuya.”
That name seemed to do the trick; KAT-TUN’s ex-member stopped talking and Yamapi’s heart raced uncertainly about what Jin might do. He heard a soft sigh from the other side of the line.
“…I know. The minute I listened to it, I knew.”
“…Then what are you going to do?”
“Hmm? First, I’ll probably have to confess that I actually called you today to say thank you.”
“Thanks, Pi. Thanks for being Kazuya’s voice,” Yamapi heard Jin let out a bitter laugh, “Now that that’s done, I’ll probably try not to think about Kazuya, although that seems impossible to achieve.”
“Kazuya told me that you two broke up without talking.”
“He’s right… when I decided to go it was because the opportunity is here right in front of me. I was really excited, and I grabbed it so fast I didn’t spare any time to think about the consequences. When I finally think about them, I became scared, and I couldn’t dare tell Kazuya. He found out through the press conference on TV… after all that, I can’t blame him for breaking up.”
“But it’s still not late is it? He still loves you, and you’re obviously in love with him.”
“…if it was you, would you want to be with a guy who has scandals with different girls every week, can be found after hours in clubs partying, left the group, and, most importantly, left you to go solo?”
“You two are in love,” Yamapi insisted, “Shouldn’t that be enough? We all know that half of those scandals about clubs and girls weren’t even true. Kazuya knew that.”
“Sometimes only being in love isn’t enough.”
“Never mind, it’s about to be my scene and I’ll have to go on set. I just want to say thank you; if you want to listen more about my failed relationship just make sure you bring enough booze along next time.”
“You are really not going to talk to him?”
“If I talk it’ll only drag this whole mess on. Believe me; this is for the best, Pi. Kazuya deserves to be with someone better than me; someone who won’t only make him cry.”
“But isn’t the person who can make him smile also you?”
“…You know, making Kazuya smiles is the best thing I’ve ever done.”
“If that’s it th-”
“If that’s it then I should really get on set before the director decided he wants a new Chikara,” The other end of the line sounded weary, “…making Kazuya smiles is the best thing I’ve ever done, and I want to keep on doing that even if it means that we’ll be separated.”
“Thanks Pi. Thanks for singing that song for Kazuya, thanks for being there for Kazuya, thanks for loving Kazuya.”
“It’s not that hard to see isn’t it? Not when I’m also in love with him too,” Jin laughed again, “Hey, if it’s you then I’m okay with it. I know you’ll never break his heart.”
“Kazuya loves you, Jin. No matter what he’s still going to love you. If you just come back then everything would be the same.”
Then how long would it be before I’m going to have to choose between Kazuya and my dreams again? Before I do something without thinking and make him miserable again? Kazuya and I are walking on parallel roads, Pi. It doesn’t matter how hard we try, maybe everything was already decided by that old guy up there, Kazuya and I both knew that. Truthfully, I think that we’re both just waiting for that day when the old guy will break us apart.”
“I love Kazuya. I’ve never been sorry that I love him, and I’m never going to be sorry for loving him, that’s a fact. And another fact is that what we want is different. We both knew that it was impossible from the start, but we still forced it, hoping that if we ignore the issue it would just go away. Actually, I probably should thank that old man up there for letting us be together so long… anyway, I really should go. The staffs are probably printing out audition forms for a new Chikara right now.”
And Akanishi Jin hung up.
Yamapi met Kazuya again weeks after that. The pale body was sandwiched among KAT-TUN members in the small elevator. It was a known fact among those in Johnny’s Jimusho that after Jin and Kazuya broke up, T-TUN, who were already over-protective freaks over all things regarding their baby, upgraded their level of love and attention for their youngest member to a degree that Yamapi never knew was humanly possible. Whether would it be with baseball players like Sakamoto or Nishioka, with any co-actors or even those in Johnny’s themselves, T-TUN would act as Kazuya’s personal bodyguards, minimizing all sorts of “inappropriate behaviors” or attempts of flirtations directed to their baby to a zero. On screen flirting with KAT-TUN’s KA became a precious moment where people can hit on the group’s youngest member without fearing for Ueda’s punches or Koki’s death glare.
Like now, when Yamapi was about to get into the elevator, Kazuya’s personal bodyguards all went into action unconsciously it was almost scary. As soon as a third party, Yamapi in this case, walked into the scene, Junno who was killing zombies on his PSP immediately stepped up and stood between Yamapi and Kazuya without ever taking his eyes off the game.
Yamapi greeted the other four members who were looking up with a nod, which everyone returned with a simle.
From the corner of his eyes, Yamapi saw Koki, who was standing behind Kazuya, reached over and poked Junno hard.
“It’s okay. It’s just Yamapi.”
The whisper wasn’t loud, but in this cramp elevator Yamapi could hear every word and could not help but felt offended when the rapper said “Just Yamapi.” Yuichi gave him a small apologetic bow while Kazuya and Ueda shared amused grins.
“Eh? Oh, it’s just Yamapi?” Junno finally looked up from his game and smiled his signature smile. The tall man moved back to stand next to Koki, leaning against the walls and leaving the spot next to Kazuya wide open. As Yamapi was still puzzling over what “Just Yamapi” means, Kazuya inched in closer, and Yamapi felt his heart beating faster just over the soft arms touching his lightly.
“Sorry for those two. They don’t mean anything bad though; sometimes the guys are just concerned,” The beautiful man smiled, sweet and always so enchanting. He was whispering, trying to make it so that only the two of them could hear it, but it was impossible in this tight space. Nevertheless, Yamapi noticed that when Kazuya started to talk, Junno turned on the sound effects on his PSP, while Koki and Yuichi started talking about some random dorama with Ueda jumping in the conversation from time to time.
“Everyone’s talking very good care of you,” Yamapi observed, and, if it was possible, Kazuya’s smile got even prettier.
“Because KAT-TUN aren’t just members; we’re family,” Kazuya whispered back. Yamapi returned a smile, and he noticed that even though they’re trying not to listen, the members must have heard every word, or else Junno wouldn’t be smiling so brightly when his game declared him a loser. The other three members also looked happy, with Koki’s ears being exceptionally red, Ueda putting his head on Yuichi’s shoulders, and Robamaru shared a grin.
“I bought your album too,” Kazuya was saying next. He sounded like a little child bragging about his new toy, and it took everything for Yamapi not to snatch him up and tell him how adorable he’s acting.
“I listened to that song too. It’s really pretty; you sung it exactly like how I would want it to sound.”
“If it doesn’t disappoint you then it’s good enough for me.”
“Not disappointing one bit. I’m really happy; thank you, Yamapi,” hearing such cute words, Yamapi couldn’t resist any more. He stretched out his hands and ruffled Kazuya’s soft strands of hair until KAT-TUN’s baby yelled out.
“Yamapi! I spent a lot of time taming that! Koki!” When Yamapi doesn’t stop the smaller man called for backup. Koki laughed and pinched Kazuya’s cheeks gently.
“Relax, we’ll get to our floor soon. When we’re in the dressing room I’ll do your hair for you, okay?”
“…can you pull it back and tie it?”
“I can do everything, now stop whining,” Yamapi thought he heard Kazuya mumbled something along the lines of, “I don’t whine”, but soon the smaller man was laughing when Yamapi pulled his bangs up like how they used to do during their drama. Soon the elevator door opened, and Fujigaya Taisuke who just entered the space shot one glance at his senpai’s hair and burst out laughing, signaling Kazuya to go over and destroyed the hair stylist’s handiwork on Fujigaya’s head.
Ding… the sound indicated that they reached the 5th floor. KAT-TUN walked out, along with Kazuya and Koki who were laughing with Fujigaya and messing up each other’s hair. Before the elevator door closes once again, those beautiful brown orbs locked into Yamapi’s. That pretty smile of his that Yamapi loves so much spread out on Kazuya’s face again, and Kazuya said,
“Thank you. Let’s go out and eat together sometime, Yamapi, just give me a call.”
Yamapi thought back to that smile and he’ll always think of Jin’s words.
‘Making Kazuya smile is the best thing I’ve ever done.’
Yamapi understand immediately. When Kazuya smiles, Yamapi would feel that everything he’d done, everything he’d given up for that smile was so worthwhile, and he wouldn’t hesitate to do anything to keep that smile on Kazuya’s face.
Even if there’s some loneliness under that beautiful smile, and even if Yamapi is not confident at all if he can help Kazuya overcome the past of Akame or not, but Yamapi doesn’t care.
Kazuya doesn’t have to forget Jin.
Kazuya doesn’t have to love Yamapi.
Kazuya doesn’t even have to care.
If only Kazuya would keep on smiling like that..
Just like that… and no matter what it takes, Yamapi would be willing to give.
No matter what it takes, Yamapi would be willing to be.
Just for Kazuya.
Time and time again when I listened with you, the love song feels distant
Being alone is too sad
Even so, I’m glad that I met you
- Saigo no Love Song / Yamashita Tomohisa