Categories > Anime/Manga > Attack on Titan

Donut Hole

by CaptainRiren 0 reviews

Faces were all he remembered. There were only so many he could see. The ones around him were unimportant. The only ones that meant anything were never to be found. But then he found the faces. Reme...

Category: Attack on Titan - Rating: PG-13 - Genres: Angst - Warnings: [!!] [?] - Published: 2018-07-07 - 3041 words - Complete

Bandages settled comfortably over his face, one silver-blue eye peeking out from a gap between them. Nimble fingers tied them behind his head, securing them, and then grabbed for the wireless microphone that fit so familiarly in his hand. He ran a hand through silky jet-black locks, calming himself, then fitted the microphone around his ear and straightened it.

"Levi, you're on."

The man took one last glance at himself in the mirror, straightened his jacket and tie, and turned around. He brushed shoulders with his manager as he walked past her, a faceless woman in her late twenties. She gave him a worried expression, one he hardly registered. Her face didn't matter. She wasn't one of them. A sweet person, but unimportant, as she wasn't one of the ones he sought.

"Are you alright?"


"You sure? We can call off the concert. You've been acting strange lately. Just give me the word and I'll call in a rain check. We can give the fans passes for another day."

Levi shook his head slowly, staring past her to the dark hallway that led to the stage. "They're out there."

The woman's expression darkened, and she placed her hands on his shoulders. "... who is out there? Can you even tell me if they're male or female?"

"I don't know. It might be one. It could be several."

"Levi, please don't start this again," his manager begged. "Last time you thought "they" were here, whoever "they" are, you were heartbroken when you came back to me."

"They're out there," Levi repeated firmly, brushing her off. "And I won't fucking break or collapse if they aren't." That was a lie, a ghost of a promise he wasn't sure he could keep, but he wanted her off his back. "I'm going out there, and you're not going to stop me."

She backed off, looking solemn, and almost ready to cry. Cry? For him? The thought was strange. Levi knew he wouldn't be let down this time. Something deep in his heart promised him so.

"Whatever you say. You'd better not come back to me looking like a broken shell again, got it?"


Ignoring whatever look she gave him, he pushed past her and started down the dark, empty hall. He could hear the crowd of fans from the end of the walkway, all screaming his stage title. It always made him smile the first time he heard it before a performance, even if he knew it was likely none of them were who he was looking for. He didn't have to know who he sought to know none of them were the right people. Clearing his head to chase away the thoughts, he emerged from the light at the end of the tunnel, and was greeted by a sea of people larger than any of his prior concerts.

His manager had gone through a lot to put this one together, as it would be his last before a long break. It caused a larger turnout than normal, and he hoped that would bring the people he was looking for. Even one of them would be enough, just enough to fill some of the emptiness in his chest, to sate the strong longing for people he didn't even know. And if he did end up heartbroken, disappointed as usual and his stoic demeanor cracked, he would have time to recover. To build his walls back up. As much as he pretended to dislike his manager, he appreciated her more than she knew.

"Let's all welcome our favorite mystery idol and his group, No Name!" The MC was barely heard over his fans' screaming, and Levi waited patiently for the introduction to be over. He absently ran his thumb over the polished metal of his microphone as he ensured his emotionless mask was properly in place and scanned the crowd briefly. "He comes bearing a new song for us just before a big break, so without further ado, prepare to be blown away by his talent!"

The idol barely restrained himself from rolling his eyes onstage, and he cleared his throat before speaking. The crowd quieted nearly instantly and waited with bated breath for his words. "I just wanna say thanks to all of you for showing up. I'm not the most professional guy out there, so it's really incredible to think so many of you came just to see me." There were scattered cheers and screams from lovestruck fans, and even if only briefly, it warmed the empty abyss that was his heart. "I've got something new, like he said, so I hope you all like it."

The rest of his words were on the tip of his tongue - "for someone important," "very personal song," - but he refrained from saying them. They would mean nothing to this sea of fans, no matter how much they adored him. Adoration only meant so much to him, anyways.

His fellow band mates stood behind him, waiting for their cue. They weren't important, either. Just more faceless people. Perhaps, someday, when he found who he was looking for, Levi would ask them to play for him instead, rather than the random local musicians he hired each concert. That would be nice, he thought, very nice, to play with the people he loved. Even if he didn't know them yet.

Levi tapped his foot four times, the signal. These two he had hired picked up very quickly on his cues and the music. Perhaps he would hire them sometime again. The guitar and drums struck up in unison, and his foot kept tapping to the music.

They're out there. I know it. I will find them.

His body moved fluidly to the music as it came closer to his cue, and his fans were already screaming their hearts out. It was one of the reasons he was so popular; he was a skilled choreographer as well as a dancer. It didn't matter much to him. He felt that he used to move with so much more strength and grace, though he couldn't remember a single thing in his life that matched that statement. But then again, he couldn't remember the people, and yet he knew they were real.

"When did I get these memories,

These big ones I can't remember?

Out of what I just can't recall,

There's one thing I remember pretty well"

His honeyed voice was amplified and blasted through the huge room. It was a marvel how quickly the fans quieted just so they could hear his voice, listen to the lyrics, observe his dancing. The movements were so familiar to him, the lyrics engraved in his mind. He'd been so vague before, but now he was desperate to reach out to these people, these ghosts of once-were that haunted and taunted.

"Try one more time, a hundred times,

All I remember is your face

And yet you yourself, I'm not sure why,

But I still can't remember you..."

His heart broke a little with each word that he sang, each little syllable ringing true in his very soul. Yet his face did not crack, did not betray anything. Even if it did, the bandages would help mask that. Or at least, he thought, because that was when he saw them. Bright green and sky blue orbs, belonging to two very, very familiar faces, a boy and a girl, no older than he. The second he locked eyes with them, it all came flooding back.

Rain. Lots of rain. Grotesque monsters. Blood, blood everywhere, almost as thick as the rain. Rage, sadness, pure heartbreak. So much that he suddenly froze, staggering and clutching his chest. Watched as one was beheaded by a monster and the other torn completely in half.

Red crawled over his vision as the music around him faded and his knees buckled. He hit the stage floor hard on his hands and knees, one hand moving to clamp over his mouth. His stomach churned painfully, and his chest heaved with ragged breaths. He knew. He knew. But now that he knew, he wasn't sure he wanted to know. Raising a lone stormy blue eye to scan the crowd of concerned faces, he spotted the same vivid colors, and realized with a painful jolt that there were tears running down those cheeks.

Isabel, Farlan. Don't cry. Please don't cry. I promised you I wouldn't let you cry anymore.

"I'm sorry. I'm so sorry. I'm so sorry..."

A gentle hand grasped his bicep, and suddenly he was being hauled to his feet. His manager pressed a hand to his forehead and covered the mic with the other.

"Sweetheart, you're burning up! Are you okay? I told you not to do this!"

"'M fine... I'm sorry..."

"Don't apologize, sweetie. It happens to every idol at least once." She smoothed his hair down fondly, motherly. "Let's get you backstage. We can reschedule the concert for another time."

"Wait...!" Levi looked back to the crowd, nearly panicking. His eyes landed on those others, surrounded by a throng of worried fans. The raw concern in their eyes almost frightened him, but at the same time filled up a part of him that had always been empty, a small fraction of the hole in his heart. "Isabel Magnolia, and... Farlan Church. I want to talk to them. Please, find them for me."

"Honey, why? Where did this come from?"


The word was all he could muster before he collapsed, followed by a chorus of shocked gasps.

"The belt line wraps the globe,

Going 'round to chase the morning sun

But we don't need to run its rails:

We follow our desire, and chase the night"

He continued to follow the instinct every time it came around. No matter how hurt he was when he first found his siblings, it played out beautifully, and now he had two people nestled safely in his heart again. He knew he still needed to keep going. His entire being screamed for the missing pieces of himself, only growing louder with the song. He gritted his teeth and sang a little louder, closing off his bruised and broken heart and immersing himself in the music.

"Try one more time, a thousand times,

All I remember is your face

Light rain settles on my eyelids,

And I still can't hear that dead, dark voice..."

Levi opened eyes that he hadn't realized he'd closed. He could feel it, the strong pull, as though the gravity had shifted to a single entity. A pull he yearned for, one he welcomed with all his broken heart. He searched the crowd desperately and his eyes landed on blue, startling blue, so different from both his own and his brother's. Despite the calm, soothing color, a wave of unrelenting rage hit him from nowhere. He sang the next lines in a fiery passion, letting the shocking amount of hatred take hold and pave the way for the other emotions he knew would sweep over him.

"Not knowing anything at all,

Well, that won't hurt you - will it?

It makes me unable to sleep, even still,

And if you found out, I bet you'd laugh..."

The rage suddenly halted, paving the way for respect, trust. Adoration. Flashes of concern, too. He could see that amused smile, troubled furrow of the brows, hear the nitpicking and lighthearted arguing. Felt the unrelenting love for this idiot sweep through him, envelop him, warm his entire being.

Erwin Smith.

He knew that name, knew it deeply and intimately. Loved the man it belonged to on an unbelievable level. Yearned for the man more than he thought possible. He didn't panic this time, didn't even falter as he finished the song, knowing he would have time to reacquaint himself with yet another person.

"When I'd try to count all the simple feelings,

I'd find I forgot even the warmth you shared with me

Bye-bye, and we'll never, ever meet again;

That's just what feeling I get, that's just what I thought...

I can't smile wide, I'm stuck, there's nothing I can do..."

Irritation. Love. Affection. Fondness. Concern, very strong concern. Hanji Zoe. Such an idiot, but God, he loved her.

Respect. Companionship. A sense of unity. Mike Zacharius. A strange one, but important, strong, noble. He loved him too.

They were honored to join No Name.

"It's like the hole in a donut:

Just like you can't isolate the hole,

Proving you were really here

Is something I can never do"

Exasperation, respect, admiration, an overwhelming sense of family, a need to protect, guilt, tears.

Gunther Schultz. Erd Jinn. Oluo Bossard. Petra Ral.

He loved them all. He let them die. They loved him. They forgave him. He promised to protect them this time.

"Try one more time, a hundred times

All I remember is your face

One more night I sleep,

Body wedged between the blanket and the bed..."

Hatred, powerlessness, acceptance. Reiner Braun, Bertholdt Hoover, Annie Leonhardt. Young lives that were forced to wrong him. Forgive and forget.

Amusement, worry. Sasha Braus, Connie Springer. He was always so worried about their well-being, a couple of dorks forced into a cruel fate. He promised to keep them happy this time.

Respect, understanding. Jean Kirschstein and Marco Bodt. One forced into responsibility in the face of death, the other claimed far before his time. They deserved a happier life. He promised it.

Hesitation, disgust, betrayal, complacence, comprehension, understanding. Krista - no, Historia Reiss, and Ymir. He understood. He knew why they'd done what they'd done. They were just hurt children, betrayed by the world.

Irritation, anger, understanding, mutual respect, acceptance, love. Mikasa Ackerman and Armin Arlert. Children who cared too much and were hurt over it.

"If there really were thoughts that never die,

Would that give us relief?

I can't hope on things that have passed,

So just give me something to fill with..."

So many faces, so young, so troubled. Concern, protectiveness. The urge to hide them from the world. The need to make them happy. Once, he couldn't stand them. Thought they were stupid, much too optimistic brats. Now he knew, understood, and loved them. They lived a hard life, lost so much, but now he could protect them properly.

God, he loved them so much it hurt.

Slowly, person by person, the void in his heart was filled. As he remembered more and more, the pain increased unbearably, but so did the love, staving off the hurt from centuries past and a terrible war. He realized somewhere along the line that he had the chance to fix his mistakes, no longer in a world of suffering and grim fates at the hands of monsters.

But there was still such a large gap. He could see the person in his mind, someone he couldn't remember, despite having memories including him. He was faceless, had no script, no personality. He was in memories of the others, a faded, blurred figure that he hadn't discovered yet. It broke Levi apart. He needed to know everything, no matter how much it hurt.

He needed to fill the spaces, no matter what.


His last concert. He could feel it in his blood, that of which burned his veins as his heart raced. The pull was stronger than it had ever been.

"When I'd try to count all the feelings I'd lost,

I'd find I forgot even the voice you shared with me

Bye bye, and we'll never, ever meet again;

That's just the feeling I get, that's just what I thought...

The tears come pouring out, there's nothing I can do..."

This was the last piece. This person... this beautiful boy whose features he could not wholly remember. This boy, so important to all of them, and yet managed to evade them. Levi was not the only one that felt the desire to find him. They all felt it in their hearts and souls that cried out for his presence. There had been countless times that they'd come together to find him, but it never ended well. They'd all broken down so many times, all tears and heartbreak, the want for this boy so overpowering they were rendered unable to think of anything else.

"The hole opened up in my chest,

Now it's the only thing that proves you

And yet I'm still so empty;

My heart is torn to ribbons, there's nothing I can do..."

The motions of the dance were so easy, second nature. He didn't even think as he moved, nor when he sang. He could perform the song in his sleep. It wasn't important. None of it was. He didn't care for his fame or glory. He had someone to find. He used all of his focus on searching, scrutinizing the crowd.

"When I'd try to count all the feelings I'd lost,

I'd find I forgot even the voice you shared with me

Bye bye, and we'll never, ever meet again..."

And then he found him - the most beautiful teal eyes he'd ever seen. They were absolute gems that shone with unshed tears, glimmering with some unidentifiable emotion that tore into Levi's heart. He pushed through the sudden lump in his throat and kept singing, vision fading as he poured his heart into the lyrics.

"In the end, I remembered that little word

Taking my breaths calmly, my eyes opened up..."

Beautiful sea green. Hope, concern, desire, fear. So many emotions coursed through his veins, more than the others had come with, even more than his brother and sister, more than his only true friend, more than his comrades, more than the kids. Familiar scenes flashed in front of his eyes, along with overpowering emotions. Harming the one he loved, and the guilt... so much guilt. Training him, the pride, he was so fucking proud. Putting him in so much danger, the concern. Long heated nights spent together, strong desire and undying, overwhelming love.

Watching him die in his arms. The heartbreak. His world shattering. Fear.

"My eyes opened up... my eyes opened up..."

He abandoned the dance, reaching forward as if to grasp that hand, so close and yet leagues away. He remembered. He remembered.

"Your name is..."
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