Panic is more bitter than tobacco, and the taste of it was still on his tongue as his breath dragged ragged from his lungs. He'd meant to yell immediately - to lash out, to do something but exhaustion made his words falter. Masayoshi stared down at him, expression gone(more) blank, gone white as a sheet as the hood fell from his head - and the words rattled around in his chest, no, /no/, he didn't mean that, Masayoshi - but they weren't the words that tumbled raw from his throat.
Masayoshi's expression jumped from confused to hurt to angry and back around to ashamed faster almost than Gotou could follow. He wasn't focused on Masayoshi though, he was focused on that tight dark knot in his chest, that gaping hole he'd carefully filled with emojis and mindless chatter. The cracks had been growing deeper lately, how could Masayoshi dig his fingers in and pull like that, why didn't he understand that peeling these layers away didn't help, why didn't he leave well enough /alone/...
Maybe he /did/ mean them, those words that he spat out like they tasted bad, hard and heavy like gunshots. "I don't ever want to see you again!"
The heartbeat of silence that followed could fill decades, Masayoshi's blue eyes wide, glittering - the wash of rage thudding in Gotou's ears drowned out Masayoshi's voice, his apologies - he stumbled backwards and away, tripped into the umbrella stand and was gone out the door.
Gotou stared after him - anger and anguish turning him numb, turning him inside out - he put his head on his hands and closed his eyes. The noise that escaped him wasn't human; it was the broken keen of a wounded animal.
On the table, his cellphone vibrated cheerfully.(less)