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Universe Roulette - Complete!

Title: Universe Roulette


Summary: Kyon wakes up one day, and the world is just a tiny bit different.  Koizumi, annoyingly, continues to remain the same.

Rating: PG. 

Author’s Note: Complete!  Thanks to everyone/anyone who read, hope it proved to be an entertaining diversion.  Previous chapters can be found here.


Universe Roulette

Chapter 15


The door slammed shut behind him. His chest heaved, dragging oxygen into his lungs after the exertion of running non-stop for who knew how many blocks. He wasn’t cut out for these sorts of athletics, especially not in his current state. Heck, not any state. He probably could have given the track and field team a run for their money back there.
It didn’t matter. He got what he needed.
His shaking hand uncurled and revealed a slightly squashed box of sleeping tablets.
It was a bit ridiculous. He couldn’t really believe he’d gone that far, and even now he remained indecisive. It was an awfully big risk.
Koizumi’s words spun in his head. It was a crazy, wild idea… but it was his last chance. His only hope. 
If it didn’t work, well… he’d probably rather be dead anyway.
Kyon spent a long time staring at the tablets in his hands. He was slightly embarrassed that he needed to resort to stealing them, but there was no way he would be able to get them without a prescription – he wound up waiting until the clerk was distracted and grabbed them from behind the counter before making a break for it. He’d already acquired the alcohol – the convenience store the next suburb over sold it to him without question when he said he was just buying it for his father. A deadly cocktail of sleeping tablets and alcohol. It was on the news all the time – suicides and accidents, usually; it didn’t matter. It would get the job done.
Would it hurt? He hoped not. He’d contemplated a number of possible approaches, and this one seemed the easiest and the most painless. And it wasn’t like he hadn’t tried before. This was just taking a more active hand in it. It was about time somebody took responsibility for the situation. 
There was no reason to put it off. It had to be that day – you could never tell when Haruhi might change the universe, and then he’d have to steal the tablets all over again. That was more trouble than it was worth. 
Before he could think about it any further, Kyon took several swigs of sake, then swallowed the pills one after another, washing them down with more sake. It wasn’t particularly pleasant tasting, but the alcohol worked quickly to dull his senses.
Of course it did. He was still a minor, after all. He was turning into a regular delinquent – skipping school, stealing drugs, and drinking alcohol. The only thing he was missing at this point was some cigarettes and a bad haircut. A chuckle burbled in his throat, but never quite made it out.
He stumbled to the bed, and splayed down face-first on the blanket. He felt weird, and sort of wanted to throw up, but he guessed that was normal. He was about to die, after all.
Crap, what had he just done? It was a crazy risk – he had no proof whatsoever – did he really want to die that badly? How pathetic was he? He wasn’t the sort that felt all that anxious about the afterlife, but like most ordinary people, when abruptly confronted with its imminent arrival uncertainty took hold. Could he throw up and undo it? Could he-
Kyon opened his eyes, and started coughing.
Sunlight streamed through the curtains that rustled gently in the breeze.
Blearily, he rolled his head to the side. The room had changed. This was…
This was…
The door slammed open.
“Koizumi…” he croaked. 
The esper was panting – he’d obviously been running. 
“KyonKyon! You have a visitor!” A familiar voice tinkled through the hallway, following by a childish giggle.
That was… his sister?
Kyon threw an arm over his eyes, desperate to hide the tears threatening to leak out.
He was home. He was home
“Kyoooooon! Did you hear me?”
“Yeah, I heard you. A bit late to tell me now, right?” he said good-naturedly, but his voice came out slightly strangled. His sister giggled and ran away again, presumably to go bother his mother next.
Koizumi’s fists were clenched, but his voice was level. “You really did it.”
Kyon sat up. He felt like crap, but he was definitely not dead. He was sitting there, very much alive, in his old bedroom.  It was too good to be true. “You know, then.”
“It was awfully risky. I appreciate you going to the effort, but it could have been a disaster. There were no guarantees.”
“Get real - since when have we ever had a guarantee?” he pointed out, then stretched. “So… did it work?”
“…It’s pretty close. I think it’s the best we’re going to get it, honestly.”
Kyon paused at that. “What do you mean?”
“You’ll just have to see for yourself,” Koizumi offered with a smile, then turned serious again. “You really shouldn’t have. If you waited, it probably would have worked out the same.”
“I had no guarantee of that either. Why are you so upset?” Kyon asked. He was finally back home! He didn’t want to spend his time arguing over what-ifs and maybes with the befuddling esper!
“I feel responsible. For putting the idea in your head.”
Oh. Kyon waved it off. It was hard to say, but he forced the words out anyway. “Don’t be. If it wasn’t for you… I probably would have done it eventually anyway. At least this way, there was a purpose to it. And it all worked out, right?”
They sat there in awkward silence for several minutes.
“There are a couple of psychiatrists in the Agency. We’re very grateful for the personal sacrifices you’ve made. They’ve offered you counselling, free of charge.”
That probably explained where Koizumi got all his psychobabble from. “I’d rather not if it’s all the same to you.”
“Well, the option is open to you.”
Another awkward silence.
“What time is it? Isn’t there supposed to be school?”
“It’s Sunday.”
Ah. He’d completely lost track of what day of the week it was… probably about a month ago. He was also convinced he’d experienced more Tuesdays than one should have in a week at some point. No doubt that would leave Asahina’s people scratching their heads.
“They’re all back? Really?” He still couldn’t believe it. “Even Kunikida and Taniguchi?”
“Everyone,” Koizumi confirmed.
“Does anyone else remember? Nagato should, right? And maybe Asahina?” Though the logistics of her remembering considering she’d been an adult throughout those universe changes were confusing.
“I haven’t had the opportunity to speak with them about it, but I think it is unlikely. I believe the only reason the members of the Agency are aware is because we espers are linked to Suzumiya in a way they are not.”
Right. That made sense he guessed. He flopped back down against the bed. It wasn’t so bad, actually. He’d rather that the knowledge of his little mental breakdown and subsequent actions didn’t go beyond Koizumi.
As though sensing what he was thinking, the esper said sat down against the foot of his bed and said, “Don’t worry, I won’t tell anyone.”
“You’d better not,” he growled, but there was no real malice in the words.
“…What are you going to do now?”
“...I think I’ll just enjoy being home for a while. I haven’t seen it for a long time, you know.”
Koizumi chuckled at that. “Of course. It adds extra meaning to the term ‘home is where the heart is’, doesn’t it?”
“Doesn’t that mean that home is with your family or lover?”
“And isn’t that what you missed the most in every remade world?”
“My family was still there in most of them.”
“But you still couldn’t be at home in those worlds, could you? Because even when everyone was there, they had different memories and different lives to yours. You didn’t have those shared experiences anymore. Really, isn’t that what defines your relationship with someone – the memories of the times you’ve spent together? Without that, no matter how similar they are on the surface, they’re different people.”
Kyon rolled his eyes. He’d been doing far too much existential thinking to deal with Koizumi’s ramblings. “Except you. You’re the same in every damn world I wake up in.”
“That’s reassuring, I suppose.”
“Yeah,” he agreed, mostly so that esper would stop talking about it.
They sat there in a companionable silence for a while. Eventually Koizumi stood. “I have some business left to take care of that I should attend to. And I expect you’ll be wanting to spend some time with your family.”
“Yeah. I’ll see you at school tomorrow.”
That night, for the first time in a long time, he didn’t dream of closed space.
Kyon could feel his eyebrow twitch. “This was what you mean by ‘you’ll have to see for yourself?’ ”
Koizumi smiled. “Is it a problem?”
A problem? The Brigade clubroom was practically overflowing with people! Nagato was sitting reading in the corner; Asakura, Asahina and Tsuruya seemed to be having a dress-up tea party and the computer society president was fiddling with the computer. “All of them are in the Brigade?” he hissed.
“That’s right. It appears that a certain blue-haired beauty recently returned from ‘Canada’. And Suzumiya was rather dissatisfied with your handling of the website, so decided we needed some more computer skills in the Brigade as computers are ‘an essential tool in tracking extra terrestrial or paranormal phenomenon’.”
An unwilling recruit, then. He didn’t have the chance to argue with the esper, as the door slammed open and their self-appointed ultra-chief arrived. 
“Kyon! Great! Now everybody’s here! S.O.S. Brigade, listen up!” she yelled, jumping up on to the desk and striking a pose.
Kyon tuned her out as she finished her monologue and jumped back down from the table, dragging the girls out of the clubroom to go do something – he had no idea what, probably something borderline illegal, but he wasn’t inclined to stop them. Too many thoughts were whirling through his head. 
The self-designated ultra-chief of the brigade just frowned, muttering something along the lines of ‘we need more members’ before storming over to the computer.
“We need more people so we can have proper stage hands,” she continued grumbling under her breath, but Kyon just ignored her sulking. 
“I just wish we had more people in the club to be backup dancers. All the really glamorous ones have lots of girls.”
“Well, that’s good then! Get her to come along to club activities some time. We need more numbers! Come on, Tsuruya, the store’s going to close!”
Haruhi scowled, then yelled, “Fine! You’ll see! We’ll recruit more club members, and then we won’t need you anyway!”
“We need more people. See if you can get her to join.”
Unbelievable. Was it all just because Haruhi wanted more club members? He’d been convinced that it was out of some warped sense of jealousy.
The more he thought about it, though, the more sense it made. The Brigade was Haruhi’s primary interest. She only removed people when he spent more attention to them than to the Brigade. So it was a warped sense of jealousy, he supposed. The club didn’t have enough members for her liking as it was.
He wanted to laugh and cry at the same time. Instead he just shoved his hands in his pockets and sighed. It had been tough, but it was hard to be angry about it. This wasn’t so bad. He’d still rather Asakura stay gone, but the memories of several universes of her being harmless dulled his fears. Haruhi had obviously become subconsciously fascinated with her after her disappearance to ‘Canada’, and it wasn’t really wise to mess with things that interested Haruhi.
At least they wouldn’t need ring-ins next time Haruhi decided to play sports. And hopefully more hands meant less work for him.
Who was he kidding? It probably meant more work.
“Monopoly?” Koizumi asked, holding up the board.
“It’s not really any fun with just two… Oh. Yeah, sure.”
It was close enough.


( 11 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 9th, 2008 04:12 am (UTC)
Unbelievable. Was it all just because Haruhi wanted more club members?


Dude, that reasoning at the end is just perfect. So Haruhi.

|'D Thank you so much for keeping me entertained just for this conclusion~

Nov. 9th, 2008 06:19 am (UTC)
Thank you for reading. <3
Dec. 10th, 2008 02:47 am (UTC)
Dec. 10th, 2008 09:58 am (UTC)
*laughs* You don't comment for ages and then you go read all these old fics. So weird. Glad you liked it! ♥
Dec. 13th, 2008 01:16 am (UTC)
Well hey, I am pretty fail that way =/

-has been pretty much lost on LJ except for kinkin- xD ;;
Jun. 20th, 2010 10:41 am (UTC)
Hmm, how do I put this? This is one severely underappreciated fic. A very well-told story which started off slow but after that really had me on the edge of my seat. Ending was kinda unexpected and a little anticlimactic, but that image of Kyon the loner, showing up early, always being the last one to leave, a tragic orphan living in a tiny flat on his own - it was just so visceral, so gut-wrenching that it makes me want to write a spin-off or something. And yeah, I realize this fic was written like two years ago, but if that's how far I have to go back to find good itsukyon, SO BE IT. (I've been on this itsukyon kick recently, but there seems to be next to nothing in the fandom - in terms of fanfiction, anyway. :C INTERNET YOU HAVE FAILED ME)

Jun. 20th, 2010 10:54 am (UTC)
Oh wow. I wasn't happy with how this fic turned out - what I get for not actually planning it properly - but I'm really happy somebody still found something to enjoy in it! Thank you!

There really isn't much ItsuKyon fic out there, is there? Sad to say, I've not had much urge to write it after attempting this one, but who knows, maybe when the new Haruhi movie comes out that will change. ^_^
Jun. 20th, 2010 11:09 am (UTC)
:D You're welcome!

The movie's been out for a while, actually! February in Japan, and then it was showing in some cities in the US last month. But nothing new if you happen to have read the novels. Also, too heavy on the Itsuki/Haruhi and Kyon/Haruhi, without enough emphasis on the relationship between Yuki and Kyon. :( But I'm just a very picky fan, I guess.

Anyway, whatever happens, let me just say that I'll be looking forward to your next work. ^^
Dec. 17th, 2010 09:05 am (UTC)
Ah. Every new chapter made my heart hurt, as I felt a dawning sense of horror with each new iteration. When Kyon lost hope, my eyes filled with tears. I'm happy things worked out in the end, but... It was such a ride for Kyon that I think I'm still weathering his emotions even now. Bravo, for this awesome story.
Mar. 20th, 2014 11:36 pm (UTC)
What's up with the links? I tried some of them and they just show chapter repeats. Chapter 4 is a repeat of 3 and 7, 8, and 9 are chapter 6 repeats.
Mar. 21st, 2014 02:26 am (UTC)
Did you come here via the masterlist? Possible the links got messed up at some point, cheers for the heads up, I'll go fix them.
( 11 comments — Leave a comment )