Subject: Saionji, Wakaba, Crowd. Done for a drabble game thread I started on the Rose Garden forums, as a starter.
Word Count: That's a good question....
More than 30,000 people line the city sidewalks during rush-hour, bustling between and occasionally into each other on their own separate and respective little journeys. So many, many faces flashing in and out of his vision as he heads along the familiar route towards the bus-stop each and every morning.
How long has it been since he has seen that face? Those features, so soft and so open, complimented by curling bangs and a pink bow.
He looks closer. No, she is different, and he takes a moment to mentally shake and clear his head of older, interfering memories. Her hair is no longer bound swiftly and neatly up, now allowed to fall over her shoulders in tendrils thick and surprisingly long. Amber waves highlighted gold in the natural light frame her cheeks and chin, removing the vulnerability from them. The small curl in the center of her forehead is still there, coupling the large eyes that no longer look the least bit childish with their heavy, sensuous lids and long lashes.
She is beautiful, and she is shining. This is no schoolgirl. This is a woman, and a well-off woman at that, if the slim, white-leather jacket and complimentary gold hanging around her neck and dangling from her ears is any indication.
Unable to stop himself from turning towards her as she nears, he isn't surprised in the least when she fails to recognize him, even though he himself has changed very little. She moves past him without the slightest incline of her head or fault in her self-possessed and purposeful step.
An ordinary man wearing ordinary clothes brushes up against her shoulder and apologizes. She smiles, nods, and continues on, soon swallowed up into the folds of living traffic.
Saionji stops looking and turns back around, deciding not to mourn his second missed chance.
He is, after all, just another face in the crowd.