2019-05-07 - From Somewhere, A Transmission

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Title: From Somewhere, A Transmission

The storm is here, and one girl is busy sending messages. Even those that might never be read.


Mai Tokiha


A darkened room.

OOC - IC Date:

2019-05-07 - June 4th, 2015

So much is no longer normal. There's a storm raging that seems to threaten the existence of Tokyo itself, forcing a general evacuation. There's turmoil and secrets and betrayals and deaths in the magical girl community. There's a pointed absence where once there was a constant companion.

This much is normal: there's a teenager, on her phone, texting.

To: Chie-chan, Aoi-chan
look, its complicated
tbh, both of you should just focus on getting to safety
just think of it like that whole military occupation mess
and i'll just mysteriously vanish for a few days again
just like old times
thanks for worrying, though
it really does mean a lot.

Without waiting for a reply, she closes that conversation, flips to another. She takes a deep breath, just listening to the rain raging outside. Her fingers are slower to pick out words, hesitation creeping in every so often as she worries what reply she might get.

To: Usapyon
going to be honest, still worried about her.
your cat's awesome, my jerkface brat is a jerkface, but that fox-thing...
no one's trusting it, but it's not done manipulating.
you're better at supportive words than me - people listen to you.
so it's selfish of me, but i want to coun

She stops, stares at the words, then deletes the line and starts again.

just let me know if it pops up again, wasn't kidding about burning it to ashes on sight

There's no point waiting for an immediate reply. The hour is awkwardly late, and many people have better things to do than to check their phones. She checks another conversation for any kind of notification, knowing that the hope is in vain, and settles for rereading her last outbound message - the 'unread' flag shining bluntly in dim light.

To: Eri-chan
It's not fair.
You deserved better.  You deserve capital letters, at least.
Maybe I'm hoping going to that effort will offend you into replying somehow.
Maybe I'm hoping Madoka-chan lied, or was lied to.
It's stupid of me.  I was stupid about a lot of things.
tried to claim the moral high ground like i was tomoe or something
because at the end of the day maybe i learned too much from her
or maybe i'm just trying to shift the blame again
trying to be less hard on myself, and failing
but you deserved better than what this crazy mixed up world gave you.
I miss my friend.
I miss my little sister.

Maybe that's all there is to do. Try to blink away the tears, tears left over from when she wrote half these messages, and just reflect on things she could have said. Choices she could have made, or messages to the dead. Wiping her eyes with her sleeve, she swipes to another conversation - one with no replies, one that probably never would have had replies even if her messages could be read.

To: Tomoe.
would you be surprised if i said i didn't hate you?
maybe it's easier, knowing you're gone
maybe i'm just able to step back and reflect
maybe it's that eri can't be hurt any more, so it doesn't matter
but honestly
i kind of wish you were still around
we didn't get along, but we got not-along in a way that let us reflect, maybe
because we both knew what guilt feels like
and what channelling it unhealthily feels like
but i can't compare myself to you any more, and you'll never read this
and me calling you arrogant is completely meaningless now
kind of a shame, given what's coming your arrogant leadership might have actually helped
but i guess we'll have to do our best
so thanks for setting that example, you tea-drinking snob

There's a laugh, paired with a sniffle, and she sets down the phone to just indulge. Lying back on the mattress, looking up at the ceiling, just trying to imagine what response that message could have brought forth - and then, abruptly, the phone buzzes. She scrambles into a half-roll, hoping and not hoping and wondering - and then flinching at the name associated with the conversation. Deep breaths might not be enough, and she types in a little anger.

To: Takumi
i recognize your concern, but save it
i told you what i've been dealing with, but not everything that's going on
your sister kept secrets from you, big shock
anyway, you're evacuating, i'm not
the storm comes with a problem that my friends were supposed to handle
but they died
someone has to do something
and i'm someone.
focus on yourself, and stop worrying about me.

She hits send with force, slamming down the phone and rolling away from it. There's a minute, maybe two, before she goes to check it. Perhaps that was a little too blunt - but the messages are already flagged as read, and there's no reply. What's done is done.

What's to do...another couple of messages, shorter, but perhaps important.

To: Kuga
hoping you didn't throw away this phone after giving me the number
i mean that only happened like six times
and counting
anyway, if you're not evacuating, storm's part of a witch thing, be careful
and if you are evacuating
takumi should be too, so please keep an eye on him.
To: Bacon Fiend
sorry i didn't make it to the planning meeting
i'm not with the evacuees, though
let me know when and where things go down
and you'll get your dragon
...so listen
i'll try to stay alive if you do, deal?

The rain seems even louder outside, and the arm holding the phone falls limply to one side. The storm rages on, and she's alone. No evacuation, no real plan, just staying put where she needs to be. Where she promised to be. Absent-mindedly, she thumbs to another conversation, where her last message shines.

To: Mikoto
i'm sorry
i could say it a hundred times
(i did, i deleted them because it would take too much space)
everything is falling apart, and i lashed out
maybe i always was a terrible person
maybe i was mad at you saying you loved me because i don't deserve it
but i miss you
if you can't forgive me, then say so
with words or sword, whatever
if you want to come home, though, i'll be here
i don't care about the evacuation, i'll only leave to fight the witch eri can't any more
until then i'll wait in our room
our home
....please come back.

There's a little flag by her messages, indicating that they haven't been read. Not the most recent, not those sent days ago, none of them. The messages are just like those she wrote to the dead - almost bereft of meaning.

And yet, maybe she can hope.

As she curls up on her bed in the Ohtori dormitories, listening to the raging storm that rattles windows and tears at the earth, Mai hopes. That's all she can do.