Chapter Twelve: Connected Minds - Part II

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I've been calling out to Soul for a while now, but I haven't heard anything from him. Did I ruin our connection permanently by being a Nosey Nancy? Shinigami, I hope not. I bite my lip in worry and bow my head, giving up. Well... Maybe just once more, I think, calling out to him in a soft whisper. "Soul... Are you there?" My voice cracks slightly and I can feel the familiar tightening of my chest as the loneliness began to take root once again in my crippled heart. A long pause followed the fade of my voice.

I kept my head down, ready to simply cut my losses and accept the fact that I had destroyed - possibly my only chance - of being a weapon-meister pairing. Minutes pass. Right when I was on the brink of giving up, a ghost of a whisper in the form of a question whisks past my ear.

"Maka... Is that you?"

That has to be him! Our connection is still intact! A smile grows on my lips and I look around feverishly, but no luck.

"Soul, where are you...?"

I gazed around once again through the black darkness surrounding me, trying to locate him, but it was no use. I couldn't see a single thing anywhere accept for myself and Soul's bobbing soul. It feels so lonely here... I think to myself. I clutch my arms, lightly rubbing the goose flesh that was beginning to surface on my supple skin, and again look down at the teenager's soul to marvel at it, with it's three spikes coming out of the top like his messy mop of white hair.

I wonder what my soul must look like...? I reach down to pat it's pointy head. The spikes are soft and bouncy, almost like a gelatin mass. His soul closes it's eyes and smirks up at me. Eh... How strange... No other soul I've ever seen has ever done that... I stare down at it in wonder.

Another phantom like whisper interrupts my thoughts and I jump. The words were too quiet and I couldn't make out what was said or an exact voice. What was that, I think as I speedily turn around at the sound of the mysterious noise. It sounded as if it was right behind me... This is freaky.

I float there in the darkness, not entirely sure of what I should do. I look down to my feet. I might as well ask who, or what, it is that's trying to communicate with me instead of letting my mind wander, I decided. "H-Hello...? Is anyone there? S-Soul...? Is that you?"

My words came out much quieter than I had originally intended them to and full of stutters. I listen for the sound of his smooth voice to answer me, but as the moments pass, nothing comes. "Soul," I call out a bit louder. Then a sound comes, more voluminous than before. A deep, silky voice, tender in sound and intention. This has to be Soul. I just know it. Phew, I thought something horrible was going to happen. Ah, heh, heh...

"Maka...? Maka are you there? It's me, Soul. Maka?"

I smile in relief and sigh aloud. I love the sound of his velvety voice. It's so soothing. It makes me feel as if nothing bad will happen to me as long as he's there with me, I thought. ... Oh crap! Can he hear me right now?! Oh my Shinigami... Stop thinking about it already!

I pounded the sides of my head trying to dispel the embarrassing thoughts.

"H-Hi, Soul! Uh... Did you, um... Did you hear any of that... Just now?"

A few seconds pass and his voice comes back like a wave crashing softly but surely on the warm, dry, sandy shore. "No, what were you thinking?"

Oh thank Shinigami, I thought to myself.

"Thank Shinigami for what? Maka where are you," he asked me from far away, wherever he was. "You heard that?!" I yell in surprise. "Well, yeah. You said it out loud, so." I felt someone giving me a strange look and presumed it to probably be Soul. I could've sworn I thought that just now, I think, making sure my mouth stayed closed this time.

"What did you say, Maka" Soul spoke across the abyss. What is going on here?! There's no way our connection is capable of being this strong yet! "Uh-! N-Nothing! Don't worry about it," I said back, laughing nervously. "Eh, heh, heh..."

"But, uh, to answer your question, I'm not really sure. I think I'm in the space between our souls and minds. So this must be where you are too, right?"

"Uh, yeah, I guess so. Um... Maka," he called out to me sheepishly. I could feel that our soul resonance was getting increasingly stronger with each passing word uttered back and forth between us. "Yeah, Soul? Is something wrong?"

"N-No. It's just, we've been resonating for awhile, and I was thinking that we could probably stop now. I mean, it seems like it worked well this time, right?"

Oh. He wants to stop... Yeah, it did work well. But... I don't want to let go of Soul just yet. His warm hands in mine. They feel safe and masculine. "Hmm..." I hum, thinking about his exciting touch.

"My exciting what?"

"Huh?!" Oh my Shinigami, did I do it again?! "What? Uh, nothing! Nevermind! Eh, heh, heh... Let's just stop since we know it worked, ok?" I try to change the subject as best and as quickly as I possibly can.

"Um... Ok, sure," he said, thankfully dropping the topic about my mind rambling. I really appreciated that.

Ever so slowly, I released Soul's hands, reluctant to give them up. I'll really miss that.

My eyes opened slowly as if I was just waking up from a long night's sleep. The swirling winds eventually ceased to twirl around us and came to an end, leaving our hair in a bit of a mess and our clothes twisted around our bodies; not completely straight, but an easy fix nonetheless.

I smiled gently up at him and he returned my friendly gesture. That was amazing. Though I guess I'll have to get used to him being able to read my every thought when we're soul resonating. That is, if he'll have me as his meister. I still wonder though... Did he feel that spark when I held his soul in my arms?... And I'll have to ask Professor Stein later about Soul's soul smirking at me when I touched it.

As I stared at his face, my mind wandered back to earlier, when I was looking deeper into his soul. He didn't keep me from seeing everything. Not really, I thought; showing slight worry on my face for a split second before catching myself and reverting back to a small smile. I saw something buried in his soul. Just before he pushed me away...

Soul's terrified... But of what, and why...?


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