Category Linkin Park
Sorry for the inactivity here. I try, I really do, to be more active here and update my stories more frequently. School has really been a pain in the you-know-what. I thought Battle Of The G.O.A.T would've been my last story here, but I had this idea and couldn't wait to share it. This story is basically the result of watching/reading Tokyo Ghoul anime/manga for a month straight. I love me some supernatural ish.
Disclaimer: I do not own Linkin Park or any other brand/label/organisation named in my stories that are valid to copyright. I do not make any form of profit from this (if I did I would be updating more frequently, I'll tell you that). Neither do I correctly know the culture of Japan nor the Japanese language. I only own the plot line. This is made out of pure entertainment.
"Arigatou Japan! You've been awesome tonight!" Chester Bennington waved to the crowd and the endless chorus of applause, screams and whistles grew louder. He chuckled at their excitement and gestured towards Michael Shinoda, who began to say a few closing words of gratitude to them in Japanese. The screams started to die down so everyone could hear what the emcee was saying and Chester took this opportunity to sneak off stage and search for a well-earned bottle of iced water. Upon finding one, he heard the crowd erupting again, signaling that Mike had finished and the band would all be backstage soon. Chester was sweating more than usual.
"Man, do I love performing!" Brad announced, making the rest of the group nod in agreement. "Especially in Japan. The crowd is always so lively. It's hard not to get pumped."
"I know what you mean." Dave said while swapping himself with a towel. Rob agreed. "The energy is just amazing."
Energy. That word made Chester uneasy for some reason. Instinctively, his left hand went to his back and his fingers lingered gently over his shoulder blades. They felt irritable.
"So, guys," Mike started, setting down his water bottle. "Last day of tour. Last day in Japan. What do you want to do?"
"Can we go to that Pokémon park? I still don't own a Pikachu plushie and this offends me." Joe piped in. The band chuckled at the DJ and decided that wasn't a bad idea. Who doesn't love Pokémon? Mike especially was excited.
"Why don't you go to the zoo? I hear it's quite the sight."
The band turned to see a suited young man, about his mid-twenties, and a plain young girl clinging onto him. The girl looked as if she was a mini version of the male, with short hair and perfect posture, but refused to look directly at the band. The man didn't look Japanese, but he sure did have their accent. They examined him for quite a bit, making sure he wasn't Jared Leto — whom his features resembled quite abnormally — but soon stopped once he cleared his throat.
"I'm sorry, where are my manners? My name is Simon. This little cutie right here," he waved towards the clinging girl, "her name is Rebecca. Say 'hello', Becca."
The girl still didn't look our way. She let out a muffled hello and held onto her —the band assumed, father — tighter and more forceful than before. Simon caressed her head.
"Sorry to barge in on you like this. No formal introduction and directly after a concert, too. You six must be dog tired. Here, let me explain my intrusion. Shall we start out fresh?" Simon cleared his throat once more and Rebecca loosened her grip on him. "My name is Takahashi Simon. I'm clearly not natively Japanese, as you can see, but I certainly was born here. Little Rebecca is quite the fan of your band — Linkin Park, yes? — and I've pulled a quite few strings so she can meet you all. Would you be so kind as to give her your autographs, and we'll be on our way." Simon pulled out a notepad and pen from his coat pocket and politely handed it to Chester. He looked at it. He didn't trust this man, not one bit.
"Chester, you okay?" Mike inquired. Chester blinked and shook his head abruptly.
"Y-yeah! I'm fine." He grabbed the notepad and pen and scribbled his signature down, writing a quick message to Rebecca and then passing it to Brad. The notepad left as soon as it came.
Brad was surprised at Chester's antics but soon brushed it off after realizing Simon was staring intently at him. He scribbled for a moment before blushing out of embarrassment. Shyly, he asked Rebecca what her last name was.
"Takahashi." Simon replied. "Bet you thought that was my first name, didn't you? Here in Japan we say our last name first then our actual name. You would be — what was it again? — Delson Bradford. It sounds peculiar now, but with our traditional names it sounds more pleasing."
Brad smiled gratefully and was soon done with his bit. He passed the notepad to Rob and it soon went along the circle of band mates. As the band was finishing up, Simon smiled towards Chester in a manner to be friendly. Chester returned the smile, but it wasn't genuine. His instincts told him something was off about this guy and he had no interest to find out what it was.
Mike held the stationery out to Rebecca but she still didn't budge an inch. For a reason to break eye-contact with Simon, Chester took the notepad and pen from a puzzled Mike and handed it to Rebecca himself. To everyone's surprise, she took it. While Mike was mumbling about how offended he was, Dave chirped up to find out more about this mysterious man, "So . . . Simon, where do you work?"
"At the zoo. Actually, I don't physically work there. I own it. Would you all like to come by one day? Perhaps tomorrow, since it's your last day."
"We could stop by for a little while," Brad shrugged. "But probably really early so we don't get mobbed by fans. What time do you open?"
Chester just watched the scene in front of him and honestly felt like slapping Brad. Does he not sense that something's up with this guy?
"Oh no, you don't have to worry about fans. We're usually closed tomorrow but I wouldn't want you to miss out on this . . . once in a lifetime opportunity." He smiled.
Chester raised an eyebrow. "Quite the pause you had there, Mr Taka-whatever."
"You must forgive me, Mr Bennington. My English isn't as well as it used to be." He smiled again. "And it's Takahashi, but please, call me Simon. Oh, since we're starting to be friends, may I call you all by your first names'?"
The band allowed it. Chester, however, remained silent.
"You can all come by my zoo any time of day, or night, as you wish. I'll give the guards the message that you'll be coming around so there'll be no unnecessary misunderstanding. Here, take the address so you don't get lost. I also highly recommend you get there by train, it's just more efficient, you know? Thank you all for your cooperation. Say 'thank you', Rebecca."
"Arigatou gozaimasu," she mumbled. Mike smiled at her and we all let out a good enough, considering that we all knew it meant thank you very much.
"I'll see you all tomorrow. Good evening, everyone." Simon smiled for the hundredth time that night, a smile that made Chester sick to his stomach. His hand found his way to his shoulder blades again. Simon's smile grew as he finally stepped out the door.
Chester exhaled and excused himself to the restroom, taking more bottles of water with him. His shoulders were really starting to get on his nerves.
"So, if you weren't married, who would you date?" Joe asked the group as they hopped onto the train leading from the Pokémon park to the zoo. Chester hesitated, but was soon forced on as the trains here didn't wait for anyone, not even the world-famous lead singer of a multi-platinum rock band.
"Rihanna?" Mike said unsurely, "I don't know, man. She has Anna in her name, and I really liked her song, Umbrella."
Joe laughed but accepted the answer anyway. "Sure, but didn't she say she had a crush on Chester or something? Pretty sure she did on some interview. Speaking of Chazzy, who would you pick?" Joe turned towards the distant lead vocalist, snapping him out of his daze. He really doesn't want to go to Simon's zoo.
"Talinda," he answered simply, "Isn't it obvious?"
"Okay . . ." Joe trailed. "But what if you weren't married to her?"
"Then I'd get down on one knee, propose to her and then marry her. I thought I made this clear, already."
"Chester," Brad contributed, "Are you okay? You've been acting strange lately. And why do you keep touching your back?"
Chester froze, unsure himself of why he's been acting so moody lately. As a matter of fact, why was he always touching his back? It just keeps acting up, he doesn't really know why.
Chester looked away, he didn't answer. The band started to worry even more about their friend but tried not to let Chester know. That was the last thing they needed.
Chester was saved by the train announcing its stop in the area Simon had mentioned his zoo was in. Mike saw that this was their stop and lead the band out the crowded area, hand-in-hand with Chester so the vocalist won't get lost in his own world again. The brunet gave Mike a small smile of gratitude, but to Mike it looked more like he was sad than anything. They lead the way to the zoo.
Chester's stomach dropped once he was standing by the doors of the Takahashi Park Zoo. His instincts told him not to go in there. No matter what he did — fake a stomach ache; kill all those who'd make him take one more step towards these doors — he just couldn't go in there. Mike was still holding his hand, and he looked towards the older vocalist as he felt him begin to wriggle. Chester's eyes pleaded with Mike's one last time, before Mike made up his mind and forced him to get over it and look at the pandas.
The guards welcomed their guests in with various gift baskets, probably something Simon suggested they do, and let them through the front doors.
The zoo was beautiful. Lovely, open spaces to view some of the pet-able animals and shiny, glass windows to peak at some of the more dangerous ones. Each habitat was fairly large, some larger than others, depending on the size and requirements of each animal. A large, brick pathway lead throughout the park and it gave the boys an idea of how crowded this place could get on a busy day. The band members scattered immediately, all disappearing in pairs to different places. Joe and Rob went straight to the ape section, Dave and Brad were strolling along the brick path in no hurry at all to see the sloths and Mike pulled Chester along with him to see the pandas like they discussed.
"See, this isn't that bad." Mike tried to ease Chester as they watched the panda eat a piece of bamboo.
"I don't trust that Takahashi guy."
For the first time since they met him, Chester actually said that out loud. And damn, did it feel good.
"Neither do I," Mike admitted. Chester looked at him in shock. "But that doesn't give us any reason not to be polite to him. If he wants us to come by his zoo on our last day here, what's the problem? We see some cute animals and we leave. He was still nice to us, it's only fair."
Chester knew his friend was right. He subconsciously touched his back again and allowed Mike to drag him to whatever other habitat he desired. A few anteaters and koalas later and the band was ready to leave.
"We've been here for only half an hour yet it seems like forever." Rob announced, yawning.
"I know. It's been a long day. We should probably leave a little thank you message for Simon and head back to the hotel." Brad suggested.
"Sure, we'll leave a little message on the notice board over there." Chester said while walking to the board already. The rest of the band soon caught up. "I don't mind writing it but someone else has to tell me what to say."
All heads turned to Mike. He sighed before giving Chester a short message to write down and mumbled about how someone else needs to be in charge of these things now.
"I hope he knows how to read in English." Chester said as he put the sharpie back on the table.
"He probably does. I mean, he spoke better English than us yesterday." Dave added. Everyone agreed.
"Oh, I believe I do read English. Thank you for your kind message."
Simon startled the entire group. Chester edged towards Mike, having a greater bond with him now that he knows the emcee despises this man too.
"Simon . . ." Joe started as awkwardly as everyone felt, "Sup?"
"Not much, I've just arrived to witness your goodbyes and hear feedback about my beloved zoo. Do you like it? Yes? No?" Simon asked as excitement built up within him. He glanced towards Chester again and the vocalist looked down, his hand sheepishly going to his back.
Simon grinned again and asked if the band had an enjoyable time. They all mumbled something about how the pandas were cute and said that the visit was overall quite pleasant.
His grin grew wider. "Glad to hear, boys. Say, why don't I treat you to dinner? You are guests here, after all. And you so kindly gave Becca your autographs, she'd be head over heals when she finds out you'll be joining us for dinner!"
From the corner of his eye, Chester noticed a small girl coming down the flight of stairs from the owner's office to the main floor. As if on cue, Rebecca was here.
That was okay, Chester liked her. He hated her father.
"Onii-chan! Are we going to eat now?" She chimed from the staircase. Mike shook his head, the band was wrong. Rebecca was his little sister, not his daughter.
"Yes, yes, little Becca! Just a moment. I'm saying goodbye to our guests." He gestured towards the band and Rebecca went back to her clinging roots and hugged the stairway railing tightly. Chester smiled at her before his attention was brought back to Simon. "Well, let me at least walk you out."
He lead us to the front doors we came from, only now it was much harder to see through. It was fairly late, around eight o' clock, so it's no surprise the doors would be much darker. Simon held open the door and the band members went through it one-by-one, Rob being first and Mike and Chester being last. Mike had to let go of Chester's hand so he could fit through the single door and Chester felt somewhat lost now. As soon as Mike left his side, not even knowing if he went through the door or not, everything turned pitch black. He couldn't see anymore. He didn't know where he was anymore. All he knew is that his friends were gone and he was alone with Simon.
His hand went to his back again. It hurt. A lot. It was burning, his skin was on fire. He called out for Mike but there was no answer, neither was there any answer for the other band members. He started to freak out, the pain was increasing by the second.
He was screaming now, the pain was becoming unbearable. He felt like his skin would burst open. He took his shirt off, hoping it might help somehow with his rapidly rising body temperature. He felt no different, but the effort used to take his shirt off was all he had left. He crawled into a foetal position, screaming in all kinds of pain. In all this rush it almost seemed like his back was glowing.
That was all he could see in the darkness. A small glow coming from behind him. He tried to turn towards it but he could barely even move. He was crying, both in pain and from the fact that he was lost. He didn't know where he was, he didn't know who was doing what to him, he didn't know what was happening to him. He felt like a kid all over again.
God knows how much he hated his childhood.
Suddenly, he felt a pair of cooling hands on his burning shoulder blades. He couldn't turn to see who it was, but he figured out that the pair was tiny, like a child's hand.
"Rebecca?" He managed to squeak out while his back slowly became numb. He still screamed every now and then, the pain wasn't completely gone yet. While Rebecca was numbing his back, it somehow slipped a few times and made him scream out from pain ten times worse than what he experienced before. It was like an on-and-off switch for the fire inside of him.
"Relax your muscles, it helps." She told him soothingly. "Please excuse Onii-chan. He doesn't know better. Here, this'll numb it a bit. It always hurts on the first time."
"The first time? What are you talking about?" More screams erupted from him as Rebecca's hands kept slipping. She apologised and told Chester that it'll all be over soon. He closed his eyes. He was so exhausted that he didn't even question her that time. He just wanted a nap.
"It's done!" She exclaimed excitedly. She slowly released her hands, pulling out some object that lit up the entire park. Chester didn't feel the pain anymore, but he wasn't entirely conscious, either. He opened his eyes once more and was grateful for the light. He could see his friends now. They were all standing on the other side of the door, staring at him with pure awe. Simon was there, too, but his expression showed more excitement than anything. Chester felt too sleepy to keep his eyes open, but he did notice flames behind him. Bright, red and orange flames. He wondered where Rebecca was. Mike tried to open the door to help his long-time friend but Simon wouldn't let him.
"Chester . . . My God. You have wings."