2014-07-23 - Apologizing For Being Possessed

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Title: Apologizing For Being Possessed

Runealy wishes to apologize. Mai was at the hospital anyway, so...


Runealy Waldia, Mai Tokiha


Mitakihara General Hospital

OOC - IC Date:

16 February 2014 - 7/23/2014

<Pose Tracker> Runealy Waldia [Ohtori Academy (7)] has posed.

While her condition is now pretty stable, Rune remains in Mitakihara today. There have been a lot of little things going on during her stay, such as doctors wondering how in the world she wound up in such poor rest, going on little food or water despite clearly having the money to get the best of those if so desired. Her only answers, outside of general politeness to 'the healers' (always that archaic term for them) was "I was stupid." It was the only real explanation she could give; she had long since figured out that admitting the truth ("there was a monster influencing me") just didn't work with most people in Tokyo.

There was homework, too. Attending classes with a half-hearted interest meant a lot of homework had piled up, and Mamoru had been thoughtful in bringing it here to her. It was a mess the princess was going to have to clean up, consequences of the week. Rune has been plowing away at it for a while now, but after a while her mind begins to wander to another 'mess', one far more important.

And so she gets her phone and starts texting. It's a fairly short message, but one Rune takes several minutes to write because she is convinced she might only get one chance to get the recipient's attention. That's if Mai will listen at all; Rune's seal-affected memories can at least recall the basics of what she did at lunch that day. It was pretty awful, and unjustified.

So she writes to the very person who showed her how to be literate when texting instead of having to hire someone else to take dictation from her for such things. The message: "Mai, I need to tell you a few things. They are the exact opposite of what I said that day. You did not deserve those words and I hope you will let me explain. Will you please see me? I am at Mitakihara Hospital, 7th Floor, 22nd Room."

A few more taps to the touch-screen follow, and the message is sent. All the princess could do after that is hope.

<Pose Tracker> Mai Tokiha [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

After that lunch, Mai had been a mix of furious and worried. The things that had been said had echoed her own worries enough for them to slip past her defenses - but certain mockery had ignited a conflagration of fury. The net result was that she'd needed to impose on another friend just to cope with it, and forgiveness wasn't on her schedule.

There might, however, have been mitigating circumstances - that same friend had pointed out the possibility of something terrible going on. Worth a chance? Maybe. So when the text arrived on her phone, Mai hadn't deleted it right away.

She hadn't replied, either.

As it happens, though, Takumi needed to go into the same hospital today for a check-up; while Mai took part in the discussions as usual, she once again had to excuse herself for the physical examination. Left with time to kill, she found herself wandering to the seventh floor, counting off the rooms...

There's a knock on Runealy's open door, Mai framed in the doorway. Her expression is cautious - not warm, but not furious either. She doesn't call out.

<Pose Tracker> Runealy Waldia [Ohtori Academy (7)] has posed.

By the time that knock comes, Rune is lying down again. Anxiety has been rushing through her since the message was sent. Did Mai get it? Did Mai trash it upon merely seeing who sent it? Did she see it and just decide not to bother responding?

That sound tears through those concerns, giving her a surge of hope. She looks up and sees... "Mai!" Joy and relief flickers across the princess' face, but they're quickly replaced by a lowered gaze and lidded eyes when remorse takes hold. "Please, come in. You can sit down if you want."

A quick look through the room would reveal that most of it is as it should be. The only unusual thing is the table by the bed, which has her bookbag atop it. There are a few other things too, such as her cell phone and a mix of both Japanese and otherworldly money. The book from that day is here too, still bound in red leather with no title written upon it. It is several pages thinner than before, though.

"Most of the others already know what happened. Actually, they know more about it than I do. Has anyone told you anything yet?" All of this is said without facing Mai; Rune just can't bring herself to do that yet, her mood far lower and weaker than the haughty anger and mockery shown when they last spoke.

<Pose Tracker> Mai Tokiha [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

If there's one expression Mai can pick up on, it's remorse. Her eyes dart around the room as she makes her way over to Runealy's side, claiming a small chair. Everything normal, book and phone and otherworldly cash.

So, there was something going on - Mai takes a moment before speaking. "I haven't heard a lot of details, no. Something...strange going on, right?"

Finally, Mai's gaze turns to the room's inhabitant, trying to judge what state she's in. Exhaustion, right? No visible bandages, it's treatment similar to what Takumi might get after some episodes... "Are you sure you're up for visitors? We could save this until you're recovered."

<Pose Tracker> Runealy Waldia [Ohtori Academy (7)] has posed.

"As strange as it gets." Rune confirms, even as Mai's assessment of her proves to be right. There are no serious injuries to be seen... maybe the tiniest remnant of a bit of scuffing from when Rune fell to the floor, but exhaustion is the real part. "I was up for over a half-dozen of them all at the same time, so I think I can handle one more. Especially one who got some of the worst of what I said. Well,"

She hesitates. "It must have been some of the worst, anyway. I don't remember it word for word, but Mikoto looked ready to seriously fight me over it." That's a frightening realization to put into words, and the princess shivers a little under her sheets from it. "Nobody else took it quite like that, so it must have been really awful. What I'm about to say doesn't change that I said it, so I'm not expecting you to just shrug this off and say everything's okay. You still deserve to know."

Rune holds up a hand, stalling for a few seconds to gather her thoughts and still gazing down at herself. "I don't understand all of it, but they said someone called 'Nephrite'..." Fright cuts her off. This is hard to say, hard to think about. "...Actually put a monster inside. Inside me or the letters," a nod over to the book in question, "or both. It drained me, then came out. That's the last thing I know; being drained like that completely knocked me out."

<Pose Tracker> Mai Tokiha [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

Mai's mouth is set in a tight line. What had been said hurt, but...she had other friends to lean on. A novel thing, perhaps. The shivering fear, however, is enough to make her expression soften - Mai can sympathize with people being terrified of her roommate. She holds off speaking until the explanation's been given, though.

"That sounds...something like what happened to Takumi. So...I can understand that it wasn't you saying them, exactly." That might not be entirely comparable - Takumi didn't remember anything, but Rune did partially... "And Mikoto gets angrier than that. If it was absolutely terrible, you would have known."

It wasn't too bad - she was still able to hold her roommate back, right?

"Thank you for apologizing, though. You were...saying a few thoughtless things, and started mocking me and Mikoto. Do you know how long you were possessed, or..."

<Pose Tracker> Runealy Waldia [Ohtori Academy (7)] has posed.

"She was angry enough to look half-ready to fight," Rune recounts. That part she does remember clearly. "'Angrier than that' would have been /actually/ ready to fight. I'm really glad that didn't happen. Apologizing... I hadn't actually done that yet, you know. I was about to."

She starts by answering Mai's question. "I can guess at how long. Maybe a week or two? Maybe longer but it just took a while to really be noticed? It could be any of those. I don't actually know when or how this happened. Everyone was saying it's probably Nephrite, but I've never met anyone named that and I don't know when they would have had a chance to... to..." Another low glance to the book. "To mess with it. To change what she had to say to me. So I don't have any real answers for you. What I can say, is this."

Now she looks up, staring at Mai. Rune's eyes aren't lidded anymore, they're wide and trembling from the shock of what the princess does recall of their discussion. "You didn't deserve any of that. It was sick and mean, and none of it was something I'd want to say to... to... to you! To someone who already has it rough enough without people coming up with horrible things to say. I wouldn't say that to a friend who I trust with my life! Even if 'a monster did it', I'm sorry!"

<Pose Tracker> Mai Tokiha [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

While she's encountered one of Nephrite's minions, Mai hasn't had the displeasure of knowing the Dark General by name. So, there's little support she can give in the face of that confusion. She glances to the book when Runealy does, hears the bit about what 'she' had to say - and flinches. Not just in sympathy, but for a moment her face darkens in absolute fury.

That fire is gone by the time Runealy's looking at her again. Mai starts to speak, stops, gives the words a chance to sink in. Whether or not she deserved those words...the point is, Runealy regrets having said them. Mai's face thaws, and she reaches out to lay a hand on Rune's. "It's...something I needed to get over anyway, and I was able to talk things out with someone else. Frankly, I was angrier that you started mocking Mikoto. More to the point - you know that you don't have to do everything yourself, right?"

<Pose Tracker> Runealy Waldia [Ohtori Academy (7)] has posed.

Mikoto. Mentioning her brings another important realization to Rune. "I need to talk to her too. Could you give her my phone number and ask her to call me?" The princess is, perhaps naively, making some very broad assumptions about how Mikoto handles social contact.

That's not an answer to Mai's question, though. It's an important one, one that needs more than just casual agreement. Not with Mai now physically reaching out to her at bedside; the princess makes no effort to resist that hand-hold. She does stare at it though, eyes now wide in deep surprise. Rune hadn't expected that at all, but once the initial shock passes she tries to clasp her other hand over Mai's. "I'm starting to figure that out. That there's a difference between what I thought people wanted, and what they really want. You don't want me to be some 'glorious leader', do you? You don't want someone with a million stupid plans going around making a bunch of big decisions. Seeing you here, seeing everyone else trying to talk me down just before that monster came out..."

Her eyes return to Mai's. "It's the difference between wanting the princess to be a friend instead of... of..." There's nerve and worry here as Rune searches for the right words. "...instead of some sort of 'perfect goddess'?" It's a guess, but this is the lesson Rune thinks she has arrived at from this whole situation.

<Pose Tracker> Mai Tokiha [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

Erm. Mai winces at that suggestion. "She's...not much one for phones. I can pass on any apology for you - that might be easier." And perhaps safer. She doesn't know if Mikoto would hold a grudge, but the best obsidian swords stay in their sheaths and there's no sense begging trouble.

As for what Rune had intended to do... "We each have our own missions, and work together out of friendship or duty. Ask for help when you need it, offer it when you might be needed. But...there isn't as much need for a 'leader' among people who all want to do good, no." Mai looks out the window. That's her opinion, admittedly, and it was nice to have someone to suggest a plan in a pinch...but being subservient is another question entirely.

Abruptly, she giggles - calm sympathy replaced with sudden amusement, and Mai's free hand comes up to cover her mouth. "Sorry. Just - after seeing your early attempts at texting, 'perfect goddess' was never a phrase I was thinking." She grins to Rune. "Just try to be a friend."

There's a chime from Mai's pocket, and she tugs her hand free to check. "-ah, Takumi's checkup should be done soon. I have to go escort him home; do you think you'll be okay?"

<Pose Tracker> Runealy Waldia [Ohtori Academy (7)] has posed.

"Please. If you can do that, it would help a lot until I can tell her myself." Rune is willing to go along with Mai's compromise solution for now, at least. On talk of friendship, duty, and there being no need for a leader... she makes a slow but deep nod to that. "I'm getting there. It's a little hard when I was always raised believing that some day, I really would need to have all the answers and make all the big decisions myself. That's how it has always been. The queen watches out for everyone." That might be an overly idealized view of the position.

"I guess that doesn't really hold up when there are at least dozens," definitely 'at least', "of people out there with the same abilities I have, and some of them are even better at it. Maybe you didn't expect perfection out of me, but I expected it and I thought everyone else did too. When I think of it like that... makes it sound like I was looking down on all of you and thinking you needed a ruler."

She lets Mai's hand go after that, gaze lowering further. "And when I say it like that, it sounds pretty stupid. So,"

A nod up at Mai, once message-checking is done. "So I'll work on being a friend instead. Am I going to be okay? Well... yeah. I will." A smile takes hold. "This was really eating at me. Now that we've talked it out? I'm going to be okay. Thank you for giving me that chance, Mai!"