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And a New Story Begins

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"Look, you're in the same class again!"

"What a relief! I was worried."

Hiro had been trying to reach the electronic board and look up his classroom for the last half an hour. His first year had started somewhat similar: noisy and with a lot of strangers, but today, to be honest, he was sure that a year ago everything was better and much simpler. This time he had barely been able to get through the school gate, needing to nearly fight through potential classmates, and now he was wasting time trying to learn his classroom. Well, he could still hope that there would be fewer people after the principal's speech, but something was telling him that there would be just as many if not more. He stood on his toes once again, silently cursing being so short, but, of course, couldn't see anything.

During Middle school such problems were solved quickly and easily – Zero Two simply grabbed him by the hand and dragged through, not caring about anyone's opinion on her behavior. But now, since she had moved to the continent with her parents, Hiro found himself utterly defenseless against those large crowds. Last year he was smarter – having arrived much earlier, he was able to finish everything just in time. This time, however, everything went wrong from the start. His alarm clock now had an exceptional place in hell for not ringing when Hiro needed it. Mother had not wake him either, too busy discussing something on the phone. Had there not been Ichigo – God bless those responsible twin sisters! And curse their private schools, that make Hiro fight against class list on his own – he surely would have been late on his first day of the Second high school year, missing both the opening ceremony and the class meeting.

"Excuse me" he tried again to go through the noisy living sea and this time was successful enough to move a few inches forward. But the board was still far far away. "Please let me through" he made a few steps, but that's it. All the children around him made annoyed noises, saying something about the queue, but honestly, there was no such thing there. Everyone was standing on each other's feet without even trying to create some sort of order. Like that, complete chaos.

However, all of Hiro's hard work was destroyed in one second, as at the exact moment he tried to move again, some student decided to go away from the board through the same place, where Hiro was struggling. Other children immediately pushed them both out of the "sea," and he would have certainly hit the floor, if the unknown student had not grabbed him firmly by the hand, helping Hiro to maintain nearly lost balance.

It felt like his body was electrocuted.

Hiro heard of such things before, of course he did. When you meet the person who you are destined to be with, you remember him and all of your previous lives, in which you had once met them. He heard but actually stopped believing something like this would ever happen to him. Not after his failure with Zero Two. They were close. Closer than he was even with Ichigo, his own sister, so nearly everyone – their friends, teachers, relatives – considered it just a delay and believed that the two of them would remember someday. Even Nana and Hachi – immortal tree guardians – thought so. But they didn't. Zero Two left with saying that they better remain friends: one day she would meet her soulmate, as would he, so they should end this to prevent any future heartbreak. She was right of course. So Hiro agreed, but deep down he believed that if not her, then it would be no one.

And now pictures were flowing right in front of his eyes with incredible speed.

He is small. Other children are standing around him and catch his every word. All of them are trapped in those white walls and never get answers. They are afraid. Afraid of being unique, of actually being someone, so Hiro gives them the only thing he can – he gives them names and tells every single child he can, that it is okay to be different from the others.

He helps a little girl with red skin and a pair of horns to run away from cruel adults. ZeroTwo! It's Zero Two! They met before, they knew each other for so long, but then why...?

He grows up. He wants to fight for a faceless masked Papa, That is his life.

Then he meets Zero Two again.

"I've taken interest in you"

The boy is strange, yet incredibly beautiful, and Hiro feels weird by just hearing his voice. Code 016 looks with curiosity and distrust, not allowing himself to think about the other parasite too much.

"I've taken interest in you too"

He never says that.

He learns more about the world, flies, and dreams of a free life with ZeroTwo and his friends. But his mind is stolen. Stolen by the commander of the Nines, and even Zero Two can't chase away those thoughts.

He never realizes. It is his first life, and there is nothing to remember. Nowhere to get a sign from.

Just in the very last moment, when there is a silent explosion in a disgusting starry sky, something breaks within his soul.

And so he runs from this unwanted destiny in the depths of space.

They fell on the floor anyway.

The other student was the first to recollect himself. He immediately got off Hiro and shook his head a few times, as if trying to put his thoughts in order and not to go mad from all the new information. He hadn't change a bit. Hiro remembered – now remembered – that blonde hair, foggy green eyes and beautiful, a little feminine facial features. Perhaps he had to say something, but all the words were stuck in Hiro's throat, so the only thing he could do was blinking and staring at his newfound soulmate. What was he supposed to say anyway? What do destined souls usually say, when they find each other? Nobody ever warned him about all of this being that difficult.

"Sakuya" Hiro's thoughts were interrupted by Alpha's voice. Ex-commander got up and held out his hand again. After hesitating for a moment, Hiro took it, allowing the other boy to help him to get on his feet. Funny thing, he noticed, even in this life Alpha preferred to wear white gloves, which looked a little odd with a dark uniform of their school. "My name is Sakuya" Alpha repeated, growing tired of the silence.

"Oh," Hiro finally ended his trance and stopped looking at Alpha's hands. "And I'm still Hiro" he giggled. It is hard to say, why, maybe just because he was still not sure what to say and what to do. Soulmates don't have to kiss the very moment they meet, right? "Em... How long have you been there?" it was strange, that they had never met in this life before while studying in the same school. Hiro could swear, that he had never seen Alpha – Sakuya, he reminded himself, his name is Sakuya now.

"We moved to the continent when I was six and returned a week ago" silence again.

It was scary to think about the previous life. The one, in which Hiro had no parents, no family. The one, in which kids were grown in labs to fight for selfish desires of some space crap. For a moment he saw a smiling face of his kind and loving, sometimes a little forgetful mother and thanked all the Gods for letting him be reborn in a more peaceful and happy time. The other life was horrible.

"How is Iota? I am surprised she is not... with you" it took Hiro a few seconds to realize that "Iota" is Zero Two. There were too many memories for him to understand everything at once. It would take some time.

"She moved last year. Said she liked New France" Hiro, of course, never lost contact with her. They ended up as friends and never stopped being them, calling each other every week and spending every free minute texting about small silly things. She even promised to visit in a few months. "And you... Have you met anyone?" Hiro asked, hoping that Sakuya would understand, what he meant. He was interested, really. Some part of him was eager to meet all of those people he once knew in his current familiar world.

"Shisoku... Zeta is my sister. First year of university" He thought for a few seconds. "Delta was sharing a desk with me in the previous school. I got along with her the first day we met. Never'd thought I was her leader once" a shadow fell on Sakuya's face. "I like this life a lot more."

There Hiro understood him completely.

"And Gamma is my childhood friend. You probably saw him. His name is Ryuusei, this year he is in class 3-1" oh yes, he knew THAT Ryuusei. The biggest troublemaker in the whole school, their own celebrity, who caused a fire at the faculty office last year. Every single teacher probably was happy that this was his last year.

Hiro met people from the other life two. Ichigo, for example. It felt so wrong that he had not been her brother back then – and he definitely didn't need to remember how she kissed him two times. Or the boy and the girl he shared a club last year, Kurei and Yonishi. They were good friends, and Hiro was surprised he barely saw them in his previous life. Kurei was code 090, and he honestly had no idea what was Yonishi's number. Well, not that it really mattered now.

"We should go, the speech will begin soon" Sakuya hurried him. "I hate being late."

Crap, the speech!

"I totally failed to learn my damn classroom" sighed Hiro. The crowd didn't get any smaller, somehow it only grew.

"It is 2-2," Sakuya said calmly. "Your name is just beneath mine, so I happened to remember" Hiro couldn't say why but the thought of them being in the same class suddenly made him happy. That must have been the soulmate pull everyone was talking about. He couldn't stop himself from smiling. "Let's go. Believe me, you don't want to arrive when everyone is already here, I did that one time" all of a sudden Sakuya grabbed him by the hand, and both boys needed a few seconds to understand what had just happened. "Oh, my apologies. It is like my body was acting on its own"

"Everything's fine" muttered Hiro, feeling his face turning a deep shade of red. "We should hurry, right. Maybe you can tell me more about yourself. After all, I failed to know you the previous time" Sakuya lightly smiled at him and they, as many other ordinary schoolboys, headed for the hall to listen to old principal's boring speech.

Maybe holding hand wasn't so bad. After all, now Hiro did not need to hurry.