"Your present mother isn't your biological mother.", my so-called father said.
"What about Takagi?", I asked.
"He's our child. In other words-"
"My half-brother.", I cut him off, taking the words right out of his mouth. He looked kinda shocked for a second, but then nodded to confirm it.
"Is that it?", I asked.
"Yes", he answered quietly.
"Do you think I actually care who my real parents are?", I asked with an annoyed tone. He looked at me in the eyes as if he didn't believed what he just heard.
"Do you think by saying that I would change my thoughts about you? Do you think I would pity you?", I asked with a more angry tone.
"Both of you are two people which I will never care for. Don't even try to ask for my care when you don't even care-", I said before I was stopped by him. He tugged on my hoodie giving me a sharp look. I was petrified by it, but then looked back at him with a disgusted look.
"You looking for a fight?", he asked. I stayed quiet an ignored him, but deep down I really was looking for a fight with this guy.
"What is it?! You're scared?!", he shouted. I kept on ignoring him to annoy him even more. Next thing I knew, I was thrown by him towards a sliding door made out of glass. I crashed on to it and causes the glass to break. My forehead was bleeding due to the impact. I was just laying there dumbfounded by the fact that I never knew my so-called dad could be this dangerous.
When I looked at him, he was just there standing. Tears were rolling down his eyes, and he was repeatedly saying "I'm sorry". I thought to myself, what a pitiful sight. If I still have any care towards that person, I might pity him. But I have stopped caring for him for as long as I could remember. I just stood up and walked outside, leaving the old man behind.
I ran all over town in hope of finding Takagi. This town isn't a big town, but it does certainly felt big if you're searching only for a single guy. To be honest, I didn't know where to look. Takagi always shuts himself up in his room, never leaving it except for school.
The more I put effort in looking for Takagi, the more restless I became. I was worried in never finding him. He is someone important to me. He is the only guy who was able to keep my sanity in check, otherwise I wouldn't know what I might've become.
Without noticing, I was standing in the middle of the park before. I didn't know if I had given up in finding Takagi, or just simply trying to sort myself out. I was just standing there doing nothing.
"Didn't I told you to go home?", a voice said from behind me.
"I did, Hisako", I said while facing her.
"Then why are you here again?", she asked me.
"Takagi went missing after I got home. Probably he's looking for me.", I said. "What are you doing here? I thought you went back home.", I asked her.
"I got bored at home, so I decided to go back here", she said.
"Is that really what happened? I'm not so sure.", I replied.
"You're really good at digging out the truth, are you?", she said. "It's just that my parents are not really on good terms. You know how much I hate it when they're fighting", she continued.
I knew that Hisako hates her parents fighting, but her parents never went too far when fighting. They also fought rarely. My parents however fought every single day, and both only cares about themselves. It's almost like Takagi and I are just staying over at their place to sleep.
"I know you're someone who don't really like to make other people worry about you, but it's okay to tell me. I don't mind anyway.", I said. She simply gave a weak nod.
"What happened to your forehead?", Hisako asked.
"I fought with the old man. I didn't thought he would go physical though. It just sorta happened.", I answered.
"Let's go to my place. I'll treat the wound.", she said as she took my hand.
"No need for that. I still got even more important things to worry about.", I answered without moving an inch despite Hisako pulling my hand.
"In that case, I'll help look for your brother. I got nothing to do anyways", she said.
"Are you sure?", I asked. She nodded. Not sure who started walking, but we walk side by side looking for Takagi.
We went around on the outskirts of the town with no luck. We then decided to go towards the center of town, hoping that Takagi might be there.
"I lost it.", I said suddenly. Hisako just looked puzzled at me.
"I couldn't control myself anymore today.", I continued. "It's just that I always wanted to get some peace and quiet, away from my so-called parents. They forbid me from being away from them, since they kept on saying I should live like a family with them. I always hated those words coming out of their mouths. There hasn't been a single day without an argument breaking out in my house for as long as I can remember. I'm just sick of it already".
"You should know that keeping your distance from them will not change anything, or even make your parents ask more of your attention. You will need to talk to them and understand their point of view of your family problems.", Hisako said calmly.
"How can I even do that?!", I shouted. I realized that I was scaring Hisako judging by the shocked face she was making. "I... I...", I tried to say something, but the words are just stuck on my throat. I was shocked that I actually lost my self control in front of Hisako. The next thing I knew, I was running away from her without looking back.
There was just so much things running through my head, I stopped running. I was on my knees in the middle of the road, unsure of what to do. I looked towards the sky without a thought. It was grey, looking as if it was going to snow pretty soon.
"There you are", a voice called me from behind. I looked back, it was Takagi.
"I've been looking all over the place for you.", he said calmly. "Let's go home. We'll sort things out together with mom and dad.", he continued while touching my shoulder. Without realizing, I punched him.
"You want to sort this out with those two idiots?! Have you lost your mind?! They're the one who caused this! I don't want anything to do with them anymore!", I shouted at him. He was just sitting on the ground, holding the part of his face that got hit by my punch, looking gloomy.
"What has happened here?", a different voice asked. It was my so-called mother. "Come on boys, time to go home and talk this through.", she said calmly.
"Don't act like you're part of my life!", I screamed at her. I ran away from the scene, only listening to Takagi calling out for me.
I ran past an intersection when I realized that Takagi was chasing me. I looked back at Takagi and decided to wait for him. I felt that I have calmed down a bit.
But something else caught my eye, a speeding vehicle was going through the intersection I just passed, and Takagi right in the middle of the road.
"Takagi! Stop running!", I shouted.
"Wait for me, bro!" he shouted back.
"Takagi, stop now!", I shouted in horror.
Takagi looked puzzled for a moment the looked towards his right. He had realized a speeding car was honking its horn and trying to brake before hitting him. He showed a face filled with horror as he knew that escaping the crash was inevitable. He looked at me and moved his mouth.
The next thing I knew, I was holding my lifeless brother in my arms with tears rolling down my cheeks. The moment was even more colder to me, colder than the atmosphere which started to snow. The car immediately rushed off the scene after hitting Takagi. I was in too much shock to remember the license plate of the blue Nissan Skyline that hit him. I just held the closest person to me, yearning for a miracle to happen, even though I knew it was never going to happen.
Goodbye. It was the last word he said to me.
Takagi. It has the meaning 'tall tree'. That night, out of desperation, I asked my parents why did they gave him that name. They said that a tall tree is where people might gathered to sheltered themselves from the sun rays and be protected by that tree's shadow. The 'sun rays' according to them are all the hardships that were given to us, and the 'shadow' is what symbolizes peace. Takagi was always the one who fought for peace in the family on both my faction and my parent's. It was a suitable name for him.
Ever since then, I hated snow and winter. I hated this city. I hated this world. But most of all, I hated myself for losing control of myself. I had forgotten what it's like to have someone close to me. I had closed myself from the rest of the world, knowing that I might just be the cause behind their griefs. To wear this mask of loneliness without solitude was my own accord. My way of keeping everyone out of harm's way.
This is where I took the name Extorsion from. I took the name from the word extortion: a practice of obtaining something through force. What I sought for is peace, and I extort myself to find it.