2019-03-29 - TIMELINE 3: Dream Land

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Dream Land

Madoka and Mami return to one of their very earliest hunting grounds, under different circumstances.


Madoka Kaname, Mami Tomoe


Tomoeda Theme Park

OOC - IC Date:

3/20/2019 - 2014-12-24

*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+ Tomoeda Theme Park +*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*
  Tokyo's largest and most beloved theme park, Tomoeda's broad fairy-tale       
  gates open into a world of rampant color and giggle-like music. Fried         
  delights season the air with their stomach-gurgling seduction, distant        
  shouts of joy punctuate a roller coaster's drop, and costumed mascots amble   
  and wave. Though Tomoeda is the name that stuck, marketers prefer to call     
  this place Dream Land, and it does its best to give a suitable impression.    
  The largest roller coaster has a metal track, known for its speed and         
  smoothness, and snakelike yellow cars with red bellies. Past its twisting     
  coils is the iconic Candy House, pink and sprinkled, whose spires are waffle  
  cones and sugar dumplings, where light-hearted performances are held for the  
  benefit of the younger audiences. Other attractions include the swinging      
  Flying Pirate, spinning tea cups, a dizzying mirror maze, and, of course, a   
  romantic Ferris wheel.          

<Pose Tracker> Madoka Kaname [Ohtori Academy (9)] has posed.
<SoundTracker> Credens Justitiam Christmas Arrangement https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fze2oHHeXzc

It's Christmas Eve. The most romantic day of the year. So much so that it makes the steady, silent deluge of fluffy white flakes seem beautiful, tasteful and appropriate even, rather than at all worrisome. As the snow piles up on street signs and lampposts and windowsills and trees, it's like the perfect framing for the perfect afternoon.

There are couples everywhere. They're shyly holding hands, walking down the street. They're boldly arm in arm, hip to hip. They're staring into the glorious storefront windows, bedecked in holiday goods.

They're holding their hands over their eyes, under strict instructions not to peek since they got off the train.

"Ooh, now here's a curb -- lean on me... and, step UP..."

They're leading their blinded date across the street, then down the block.

She's wearing fuzzy mittens, pink and yellow-striped, and her hands are very warm, in Mami's.

Madoka's voice is as light and fluffy as the snow tangling in their respective twintails.

But it isn't the only thing Mami can hear -- there is an increasing density of children's laughter, of excited little shouts, as the two of them move carefully along.

And the smells... cold metal and hot oil. Frying dough and crystallizing sugar.

"Okay." Madoka's breath warms Mami's ear on this cold day, as she leans in. Their cheeks are almost touching -- there's a frisson between them. Some of it is simple nearness.

Some of it is Madoka's bubbling excitement. She's not boiling over -- more like living champagne. The embodiment of celebration.

"...open your eyes."

They're standing in front of the Tomoeda Theme Park gates.

One of the very first places they hunted a Witch together.

A place where they were much too busy with work to play, that day.

A place they haven't had time to return to, since.

Until now...

Madoka is confident in the quality of her surprise, but she cares, too, she yearns for it to land well. All of those feelings tremble on her lips as she waits for Mami's reaction.

<Pose Tracker> Mami Tomoe [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

Christmas Eve--once, a lovely but wistful kind of day, for a girl so used to being on the outside looking in. There was always a beauty to the snow, to the stories of every one of those couples walking down the streets. It is, in fact, one of Mami Tomoe's very favorite times of the year.

...Even more, at the moment. "Ah, all right--" Mami is gamely playing along, a little nervous with her eyes covered but at the same time entirely trusting of her date's guidance. There's a warmth in Mami's voice--it's excitement more than nerves, a hint of shyness more than any real worry. There's so much excitement all around, and Mami has always liked just being near it. But the smells--the smells surprise her.

"Ah, this way?" Mami asks as she feels them turn a little, and while Mami's gloves are gloves rather than mittens they are a luxurious knit pink-and-yellow too, the little flecks of white from snow a beautiful dusting. The air--

Mami's ear would be cold, otherwise, her insistence on keeping her hair in order a little more important to her than a truly heavy hat--but she has an excitement to her too, a joy even before she understands just to be here, just to feel that paprticular breath, aaalmost that particular cheek.

If Madoka is champagne, then she is the best champagne.

"Mm!" Mami agrees, as directed. Her perfect eyelashes flutter as they open for the first time since the train, and Mami's golden eyes settle upon--

There's a little gasp that Mami notices is her own, her breath catching as she looks up at this place, at this one that so long ago..

"Oh," she starts to answer, and she can feel a certain swell, her hand settling close to her heart as she looks it over, "Madoka-chan," she says, "You remembered!" It is full of most everything that comes with her throwing her arms around Madoka a moment later in utter delight.

<Pose Tracker> Madoka Kaname [Ohtori Academy (9)] has posed.

They wind up with gawking children all around -- their hug metamorphizes into leaping up and down with an intermediate stage of swaying back and forth. Their breath swirls in the air around them like a wreath of white blossoms.

Madoka's eyes, when they reopen, shine with a dozen stars. Not for the theme park. All of them are for Mami.

"Of course I remembered," she replies, tenderly enough that her cheeks are faintly mottled. Embarrassment doesn't rule her, though. Joy does.

Tugging at Mami's hand, she pulls her inside the gates.

"Let's go, let's go!"

And they all but skip to their first attraction. Madoka, an occasionally perceptive reader of people, is happy to lift the burden of choice from Mami's shoulders, though she is also paying acute attention to which attractions catch her partner's eye.

They're starting off easy though -- with the Flying Pirate. Swooping and soaring through the sky is something the two of them are intimately familiar with. But not with it being outside of their control.

Madoka is giggling relentlessly in no time.

<Pose Tracker> Mami Tomoe [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

Mami is beaming, when her eyes reopen too, and the cold is nothing more than a stage for the warmth of that starry look. She's a tiny bit red herself--old habits of reserve don't break entirely--but would not hide or run off for the world. Instead...

She just smiles, and commits those sparkles to her memory; she keeps each one of them.

...And then giggles softly as she spots the kids around them and speeds along after Madoka, "I'm coming!"

'But' nothing, Mami for one only even notices the ground because she makes a point to notice each footfall, the feeling of her gloved hand in Madoka's mitten, even the chill air on her cheeks. Madoka's instinct is right in the first--there's too many to choose from at first. ...But the Flying Pirate?

Arr. Mami thinks of a story immediately, and as they're on it--

Mami goes from prim to slightly nervous to giggling herself without care in moments, the sweep they take through the air altogether different in this air, in this way.

There are a lot of things Mami has eyed in her trips here in the past--but one in particular waits. One, graceful...!

The teacups, shining and lined just like larger versions of the real hand-painted thing, ideally suit two and whirl all about, more gently than a coaster but with a certain refinement. It has long been Mami's favorite; she can identify each of the cups just from watching, knows some have been replaced or repainted over time...

This one has a little gold, as if from filling in a crack, and its sides stand up around them from their seats as Mami, quietly exuding joy, keeps Madoka's hand in hers and basks.

...The enthusiasm for the makes and cups they remind her of has definitely been voiced.

<Pose Tracker> Madoka Kaname [Ohtori Academy (9)] has posed.

Gently Madoka guides their joined hands up to the wheel in the middle of the teacup -- and then they're spinning, faster and faster and faster. The world blurs past them and it's all color and noise -- pink and gold light and the sound of laughter.

Afterwards, breathless, Madoka makes the bold proposal she might not have had the guts for otherwise.

The first time they get to the front of the line for The Big Roller Coaster they're TURNED AWAY. Madoka is too short.

She is not deterred, and slips bottle caps in her shoeheels, from the vending machine drinks they toasted together, sitting on the bench.

She pulls her hat out of her purse for the second trip through the line. A hand-crocheted snood -- Papa's construction. It isn't a very good disguise, but the worker isn't very motivated, either.

And then they're in a car together...



...reaching the peak...

...Madoka grips Mami's hand harder than ever, white-knuckled.

<Pose Tracker> Mami Tomoe [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

The wheel! It's all a beautiful blur...

And Mami wouldn't have thought to make that particular suggestion either. Her eyes widen, perfect and bright, at the thought--before she agrees, and commits her excitement to their plan. And... Then...

It is by the time they have finished their drinks a matter of principle as much as anything. Good disguise or not, Mami beams once they reach the car.... and as it rises, she finds her heart in her throat for different reasons. Rising, rising....

Mami, for her part, lets out a shriek of surprise as they thunder down that first incline. She doesn't actually let go of Madoka's hand the whole time--...though she does after rising and falling and rising and falling...

...Think it might be fun to do another.

But before the next line, before the walk across another section, Mami points out with a clear interest the hall of mirrors in another section, something with a little more walking, sure--

...But also a whole set of ways to see one another both together, from the ordinary and lovely delightful...

...to the suddenly tall...

To the laughing wondering and brief concern on Mami's part that her drills might have come out of order. Getting lost wandering around with Madoka for a few minutes is certainly on her highlight list.

...And so is taking a moment for crepes while they plot their next move, fresh and delightful and an excuse to sit on the bench together just together, just briefly another set of two in the park.

<Pose Tracker> Madoka Kaname [Ohtori Academy (9)] has posed.

Madoka has a creamy mustache, and she's too good a girl to talk with her mouth full, and too eager to eat her crepe to stop eating, which makes her excited chatter very... disjointed.

"I can't believe--" munch, munch, chew, swallow, "--I finally got to go on the Ultra Speed Roller Coaster!" Chew, chew, chew, gulp. "I've never been brave enough..."

The crepe is gone.

That, conveniently, gives her a free hand.

She lays it on Mami's gently.

"You make me brave, Mami-chan. I feel like I could do anything when we're together."

<Pose Tracker> Mami Tomoe [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

Mami is a little neater--but she can't help but stay smiling for every moment of Madoka's chatter. ...How she manages to take quick bites and not do the same is mostly a matter of letting Madoka do the chattering until Mami's between bites. ...It also means hers disappears a little faster, whipped cream and all.

"It was even more intimidating close up," Mami admits with a little laugh--and then she pauses, her expression open, waiting as she feels Madoka's hand on hers, sees Madoka about to speak--

...And that curiousity warms into a smile that has the character of something long-built, the sort of smile that seems to Mami to always be there waiting to happen again since she's become so close to Madoka.

"Funny," Mami answers, curling her fingers very lightly under Madoka's, looking just to her face, to her eyes; Mami's are like honey, in this particular light. "I could say the same. I always pretended, but..."

"With you, I don't have to. As long as you're close by, I think we can come through anything. Everything I was afraid of just... can't seem to get close, with you here instead."

"And I feel like you really could. Just watching you go..." She is still smiling, but it's a vision, too.

"When I'm with you, I feel like everything is worth it. That when it was harder, it's all all right."

Then a little laugh, very soft. "...Mm, but also maybe that I should put more cream in the next batch of frosting..." She reaches out, softly, to brush away the excess above Madoka's lip.

<Pose Tracker> Madoka Kaname [Ohtori Academy (9)] has posed.

The crepes were steaming -- their breath is steaming -- and now, Madoka's ears are steaming.

For a long moment, she is perfectly frozen beneath Mami's fingertip.

And then she leans into the touch, which lets her slide the side of her nose alongside it for just a second, a quick nuzzle.

Quick because she jumps upright -- not nervous and not distressed, but... eager again, eager like she was at the gates.

"C'mon," she urges. "The sun is starting to set."

The days are so short, at the height of winter.

"There's one place we still haven't gone."

They are, in short order, shown their seats on the massive ferris wheel.

Although their not-well-distributed weight makes the car rock a little bit, Madoka, who entered second, sits next to Mami rather than across from her.

There's an abrupt jerk when the wheel swings into motion, and another one when it stopped, and somewhere in between those two things, Madoka's arm snaked around Mami's back. To support her, and for support.

<Pose Tracker> Mami Tomoe [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

It's supposed to be cold, but it doesn't feel cold. Especially not with the sudden eagerness--Mami blinks, and as Madoka says it, she realizes that it's true; the light has changed, the sky has changed, and closer, closer--

Mami hops up with Madoka immediately, dusting herself off, walks right along--

...And there, in the ferries wheel, in a little rocking car, with Mami on the far end.

A little jerk, sure; movement, and a part of Mami wonders fancifully if the whole car will spin, but it doesn't, at least, not more than a little bit in her mind. Somewhere between--

Mami leans a little, looking out over the sky, but looking to a closer sky, too; where Madoka's arm has abrubtly shifted behind her, Mami's lacks the cover of of a little noise as she slips it back around Madoka's, higher, her gloved fingers curling.

The sun is starting to set.

...Mami often has a lot of things to say, but at the moment none of her words quite seem right, except, "Madoka-chan..."

<Pose Tracker> Madoka Kaname [Ohtori Academy (9)] has posed.

Earlier we compared Madoka to champagne.

Madoka's never tasted champagne before, actually.

But Mami has.

And now she has again, there in the ferris wheel, when it rises to its apex and all Tokyo lays at their feet.

It's sweet.