2019-04-06 - TIMELINE X: Predictable
Sayaka, across time.
Sayaka Miki, Madoka Kaname, Hitomi Shizuki, Eri Shimanouchi, Homura Akemi, Kozue Kaoru, Miki Kaoru, Tellu, Mami Tomoe, Kyouko Sakura, Nori Ankou, Endo Naoki, Garnet, Lera Camry, Nanoha Takamachi, Ren Aizawa, Sachiko Majime, Utena Tenjou, Tsubasa Kazanari
| OOC - IC Date:|
04-06-2019 - Everywhen
Wind whips rain against a box of windows. The community rec center feels strangely silent out here in the lobby, though thousands of people are sheltered within. Sayaka should be in here too, not separated from the fury of the storm by a fishbowl's worth of glass. But what risk is the weather, compared to what Madoka's going to be up against? Bent over, Sayaka meditates quietly on the row of candy dispensers, her features reflected blurrily against their multicolored faces.
"Yosh," she decides, and feeds her coin into the center machine. Cranking the knob a few times, she hears the coin drop through, clatter, and release a candy with a crinkle of plastic and a plop. Prying fingers at a metal door, she pulls it out and stands up to her full height, a good head taller than Madoka Kaname.
"You're gonna catch a cold, you know," Sayaka sighs, her skin grey in the half-light of a hurricane. Raindrops drip down her face, shadows cast by the windows. "Guess that's okay." Hands together and elbows apart, Sayaka gives the plastic wrapping a tug, popping the bag open, then fishes around inside it with a finger.
"But just a cold, all right?" Sayaka pulls out the candy, a pink lollipop in the shape of a huge diamond. Her smile is as crooked as the plastic ring the candy's set into.
"I have to marry you, after all. So be sure to come back properly." She holds the ring out for Madoka to see, but when Madoka reaches for it, Sayaka pulls it back.
"Ah ah ah. You can have it," she corrects, "when you get back." Sliding it back into its plastic sleeve, Sayaka gives Madoka a stern look. They hug, of course, and it puts a smile on Sayaka's face.
That smile lasts for hours and hours, while she waits, arms wrapped around her knees as she sits against the glass wall. But it doesn't last forever.
Her alarm clock plays Mozart, and Sayaka jerks awake blearily. Patting around until the music cuts off, she looks around her room for a moment, at the long morning shadows thrown by her various lonesome chairs, by the long antique mirrors. Swinging her legs off the bed, she rubs her mouth and nose together, smothering a yawn. When her hand comes away, she's smiling.
"Okay," she talks to herself. "Make the best of today."
SOUNDTRACK - METRIC - BREATHING UNDERWATER - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UkcRYdUV9e8
Sayaka's arms swallow Madoka's tiny waist and lift her up bodily. Hitomi sighs to the sound of vaguely sapphic caws and protests.
The bat swings, and the ball cracks, sailing for the fences. This sort of hit, you don't have to rush. Sayaka swings her head back to look at her cheering team, and for some reason she wants to cry a little. Instead, she bobs her head, and starts running. /I'm just getting started,/ is what it feels like.
"Miki-san," the history teacher says, when she tries to leave. "We need to talk about your work habits."
"Enough with the lecture!" Sayaka interrupts. With the up-and-down motion she dutifully learned in class, she sprays Homura Akemi with the fire extinguisher, drenching her in powder and moisture and gas all at once. "Come on!" she tells Madoka.
"Did that blonde girl transfer schools?" Sayaka wonders aloud, sticking a grape in her mouth with a fork. Madoka seems perplexed, but Eri freezes. "You know, the super pretty one we used to see in the hallway after gym. I haven't seen her in weeks. Maybe she's studying over--Eri-chan? Are you crying?"
Sayaka holds Madoka's face against her shoulder gently, letting her soak the fabric of her school uniform. In black and white, bound with ribbons at the corners, a photograph of Eri Shimanouchi sits on the table. But Sayaka's eyes rest not on that photo, but on the face of Homura Akemi. She and Eri had started hanging out a lot after school, telling no one where they were going or what they were doing. When she disappeared, Homura had only grown more prickly and secretive.
Her alarm clock plays Dvorak, and Sayaka jerks awake blearily.
"Okay," she talks to herself. "Make the best of today."
Her arms swallow Madoka's tiny waist and lift her up bodily. Hitomi sighs to the squeals.
"Strike three!" the umpire cries, and Sayaka, red-cheeked, looks back accusingly at Kozue. In response, the fox-eyed girl blows her a second kiss.
"Miki-chan," the math teacher says, "you need to apply yourself."
"Get away from her!" Sayaka orders, letting out a full-blast stream from the fire extinguisher, drenching the transfer student utterly and powdering her lovely long hair. "Madoka, let's go!"
If only the platform were a little closer. Slinging twin swords down to staple in, Sayaka plants her feet on them and launches herself. It's her first time as a Puella Magi, and she will NOT watch the girl she so admires die right in front of her. That's not what she made this wish for. Blasting off the platform, she hurls herself at Mami Tomoe with a heart-rending cry, even as the teeth descend. She manages to get one arm around Mami's waist, to shove her, to drive her off her feet. But the sword-long triangles of bone scythe shut, shearing off one golden drill... and biting right through Sayaka Miki's torso. Caught in the crunching maw, Sayaka only has time to roll a blind eye towards Mami and Madoka where they huddle together, before the chewing starts.
The alarm clock blares Chopin, and Sayaka jerks awake.
"Okay. Make the best of today!"
Her arms swallow Madoka's waist and lift her. Hitomi sighs.
"G-gheh," Sayaka stammers, forcing Kozue's lips away from hers. "J-jeeze," she wails, as the other team's infielders stare in shock, and her home run ball rolls down a hill past the fence somewhere. "That was a sister kiss!" she explains, to laughter.
"Miki-kun," her science teacher says. "You're coming in to do corrections, right?"
"Consistent?" Sayaka asks Homura, confused. "I'll show you consistent!" And she blasts her with the fire extinguisher again. Madoka, mystified, coughs delicately.
"Oh, I'm sure your heart is pure enough," Tellu was saying, with a fingernail on Sayaka's cheek, before the yellow ribbon wrapped her wrist. "They always make such dramatic entrances," Tellu says now, staring down the barrel of a rifle. Sayaka, less cynical about dramatic entrances, has a million stars in her eyes for Puella Magi Mami.
"If Eri-chan, Mami-san, and the transfer student are all going, why shouldn't I?" Sayaka argues. "Besides," she smiles back at Madoka. "You don't have to make a contract just because I do, right?"
Sayaka's alarm clock blares Chopin.
Sayaka's alarm clock blares Beethoven.
Sayaka's alarm clock blares Handel.
"Make the best, the best of today!"
Sayaka hug hug hugs Madoka, and Hitomi sigh sigh sighs.
A familiar erupts like a balloon filled with glitter as Sayaka's sword parts it.
She ducks behind a concrete wall, letting Homura's autofire wither it away, before lancing out from behind it in a ripple of white cape.
Her shout of defiance cuts off as Eri's whip cinches her throat closed, and her feet drag at the ground to avoid being pulled onto her face.
Panting like a savage animal, forehead grinding against Kyouko's, Sayaka struggles against her rival, trying to force her back by brunt of clattering sword.
For the first time that Sayaka's seen, Homura is genuinely smiling. She can't see it on Homura's lips, mind, not through the full-face gas mask. But the smugness in her eyes is unmistakably happy. "How the heck... did you know... to be wearing that already?" Sayaka pants, letting go of the fire extinguisher's spray tube. She looks defeated... so much so, that Homura makes to toss her hair. But before she can do so, Sayaka swings the extinguisher like a club, nailing the Puella Magi in the head with it. "Hold my hand, Madoka!" she urges, as the dazed magical girl falls.
Sayaka smooches Madoka gently on the forehead, holding her face delicately.
Sayaka, on one knee, draped in white cape, presses her lips to the back of Mami's glove, her forehead bowed loyally.
Eyes squeezed shut hard, Sayaka tentatively moves her lips towards Kozue's. But before she can plant a careful peck there, Kozue tackles her over the other direction, driving an open-mouthed kiss into her yelping face.
"You know, Sayaka-chan," Miki confesses, his hands hovering over the keys. "You're... a good friend."
"Oh," Sayaka says. "...thanks."
On a snow-swept rooftop stand Nori, End, Fate, Garnet. Lera, Nanoha, Ren. Tsubasa and Utena. Even Sachiko. And, of course, Mami. "They say we are who we are," Sayaka says, referring to the fearsome assemblage of Shepherds behind her. Taking Nori's forearm in a comradely grip, Sayaka grins at her.
"But we don't have to be."
Kozue slaps her, then kisses her.
Sayaka's hands tangle in Kozue's hair as the sprinklers pour over them in their school unifrms.
Kozue presses her lips to Sayaka's, even as the steel of her kama is pressed to the puella magi's throat.
In the closet...
On the field...
In battle, in the garden, at a party...
"Mou!" Sayaka moans. "Haven't you kissed me enough already?" But with a wicked giggle, Kozue shoves her against the wall.
"Miki-san," Sayaka's Japanese teacher calls, as Sayaka starts to leave class. "Your essay..."
"I know," Sayaka cuts her off shyly. She's only in this class because she failed out of the regular one, due to being so busy. "It was really bad..."
"Thoughtful, I thought," the teacher says. She smiles. "You should keep working on grammar. But you are, I think, a very sensitive writer."
"Oh," Sayaka says.
The teacher slides her paper across the desk. 100, it says.
"I'd rather your essays be thoughtful than perfect," she says. "Same thing for people, right?"
Sayaka blinks, finding her eyes wet. "Yeah," she echoes. "Same thing."
"Eri-chan," Sayaka calls. Her great enemy, standing by the shoe lockers, stiffens at the sound of her voice. Sayaka searches herself for some sort of words, but she can only come up with, "I'm sorry." It's not enough, she knows then. And she'll know it, too, a week from now, when Eri takes Mami the way Sayaka took Kyouko. Because she won't accept 'sorry,' either.
Sayaka's alarm clock blares. Her legs swing off the bed.
"Which barrette do you think is better?" she asks her mother. "The yellow is my usual, but I feel like the red has more..."
"Does it really matter?" her mother asks, not looking down from slipping in her earrings. "They're both the same."
Sayaka looks down at the red in one hand, and the yellow in the other. After a long moment, she affixes the yellow, as usual. The bathroom door swings shut a few seconds later, as her mom heads off to work.
"Make the best of today," she says listlessly.
Sayaka hugs Madoka's tiny waist, and lifts her up, and teases her.
"How many times are you going to do that?" Hitomi asks with a sigh.
"What do you mean?" Sayaka laughs, letting Madoka down onto her little feet in order to nuzzle her cheek. She smiles at Hitomi. "Every time, of course."