Butterflies and Ice Cream

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kaserkin
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Butterflies and Ice Cream

Post by kaserkin » Sun Jul 05, 2015 6:26 pm

This is my first fan fiction, and it's a story I've had in my mind for a while. It's a continuation of Lilly's bad/neutral ending, similar to After the Dream and Developments (very original idea, I know), who have been a major source of inspiration for me. The catch is that it doesn't concern Lilly or Hisao, at least not directly. It's about Rin. Many thanks to Blank Mage for his proofreading and his sound advice.

Chapter 1: Invitation
Chapter 2: Other Invitations
Chapter 3: Summer Rains
Interlude: Rough Sketches
Interlude: The Boredom of Rika Katayama
Last edited by kaserkin on Sun Dec 11, 2016 12:15 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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kaserkin
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Re: Butterflies and Ice Cream

Post by kaserkin » Sun Jul 05, 2015 6:28 pm

Chapter 1: Invitation

I am painting a butterfly. The wings give me some trouble. Maybe I should ask the Butterfly Whisperer what butterfly wings are like, before she leaves the school. I don't know how to feel about that. I've already collected her and she isn't very interesting, a bit like my fellow Art Club members. Maybe people get less interesting with time. Like board games. But this isn't exactly true. The Blind Boy Who Paints joined the same year as I did, and he still interests me. Maybe it's because I haven't collected him yet. I think he's yellow or red or turquoise, but I have never talked to him. I hope he's yellow.

There is someone behind me. Nomiya is looking at my painting, and nods approvingly before moving along.

I continue to paint, and I wonder why Hisao wasn't on the roof to eat lunch with Emi and me today. We should have made a bet over that. I'd be able to buy ice cream. He mentioned something about his classmates trying to talk to him the other day. Maybe he was with Takashi Maeda and Maeda's Friend with a Cane. Maeda likes people with canes. Saki Enomoto also has a cane, and she had one when she and Maeda were orange and interesting. Later, Maeda became green, a green a bit lighter and a bit darker than Hisao's, while Enomoto is still orange, yet she is much like Emi, and much unlike her. I'm not quite sure if Maeda changed color before or after they stopped being interesting.

The motifs on the wings have morphed, and now they look like upside down people or contorted clowns. People are starting to pack their stuff and leave the class. I remember I haven't eaten breakfast and I barely touched lunch, so I do too.

Maeda's Friend with a Cane enters the class just as Enomoto reaches the door. They both smile. He holds the door open for her, and looks a bit like a fancy gentleman in movies. He talked to me once, I think. I forgot what it was about. He talks with Maeda for a moment as I head towards the door.

"Hey, Rin!"

Maeda looks at me with a grin. Some would call it a smile, but Maeda rarely smiles.

"Did you and Ibarazaki eat on the roof with Nakai today?"

"No, I don't think so. He sometimes does, but he wasn't on the roof today. And if he was, I wasn't there when he was."

"Well, Akio and I were planning to cheer him up, but we couldn't find him either."

They wanted to cheer him up? Maybe they also noticed he's always looking sad. Looking sad is not bad, as long as you aren't really sad, but Hisao seemed like a sad person that also looked sad when he transferred here. I rarely saw him after the festival, at least until the last few days, but the Butterfly Whisperer made him greener, and he looked less sad. And now that she's leaving...

"He probably just wants to be alone, Takashi. You should understand him."

"He shouldn't isolate himself. He barely talked to anyone but Satou and Ikezawa before, and I don't think he'll speak with them anytime soon."

"That's not true. He spoke to Emi and me yesterday."

Maeda's Friend with a Cane chuckles. I don't know if I can think of him as 'Akio'. I still prefer 'Maeda's Friend with a Cane'. It describes him well. Akio is a name. Names are words, and words don't usually describe people well. I think I may be contradicting myself.

"See? Everything's alright if he talks to Tezuka."

Maeda doesn't answer immediately. He simply gives his friend one of his grumpy glares.

"I thought you wanted to help him."

Maeda's Friend with a Cane sighs.

"I do. I just think we shouldn't pressure him too much. He's got a lot to deal with."

"I think you should."

"Should what?"

"Pressure him. Otherwise, he'll mope around and actually become a sad person that looks sad."

Maeda grins again.

"See? Tezuka agrees with me."

His friend puffs.

"Fine, I guess we'll pressure him, then. Now, want to catch a bite?"

I nod.

"Sure, why not? I'm pretty hungry."

He looks at me, slightly puzzled, and then at Maeda, who simply shrugs.

"Um, okay. Cafeteria's fine for you?"

"I'd rather have ice cream. I don't think we can get some here at school."

His friend frowns.

"Actually, they do serve ice cream at the cafeteria, but it's not very good."

"We could go to the shop in town. What do you think, Akio?"

Maeda's Friend with a Cane shrugs.

"That's fine by me. The nurse pesters me about doing more exercise anyway."

And so we found ourselves inside the ice cream shop in town. The walk was pretty short and mostly quiet. Takashi Maeda and his friend chatted about Math classes and the latest issue of a manga they read. Maeda's Friend with a Cane walks pretty fast for someone with a cane. Then again, Emi runs pretty fast for someone with no legs.

"So, Rin, which flavor do you want?"

"I am not sure. My favorite is strawberry, but chocolate is the best here."

Maeda grins.

"You could take both. That's what I'm doing."

"They don't mix well."

"Why don't you just take chocolate, then?"

"I don't really like chocolate. It's just that it's better than strawberry here."

Takashi makes his grumpy face before nodding, but his friend insists a bit.

"Well, you could try something else. Pistachio seems tasty, for instance."

I frown.

"I don't like trying new stuff. What if after I taste it I realize I don't like it and that I should have taken something I already knew was good?"

He's about to respond, but Maeda cuts him before he can even start.

"It's our turn to order, guys."

He turns towards the cashier.

"Hello, we'd like a chocolate-strawberry cup, a vanilla cup, and..."

He looks back at me. I guess I'll have to order something.

"Two balls of chocolate, please. In a cup, with a spoon. A large one, if you have it."

We are served quickly enough. I search my pockets, but I can't find my wallet. I usually don't buy stuff at school, so I keep it in my room. And even if I had it, I'm not sure I had enough money for ice cream.

Maeda glances at me.

"Is something wrong?"

"Yes. I don't have my wallet."

He scowls for a moment, but his expression quickly mellows. He puts the two cups he was holding back on the counter and takes out a couple of bills.

"I'll treat you. Just remember to pay me back."

"I'll try. I'm pretty good at forgetting things."

"Don't worry. I'm pretty good at pestering people for money." he says, grinning.

I nod.

"That's good. It's a useful skill to have."

They smile, and we sit at a short round table next to the window. Takashi puts my cup in front of my place, and his cup in front of his. He then takes off his jacket and puts it on the back of his chair, while his friend rests his cane against the table. I take off my sandal and start scooping my ice cream. I take the spoon to my mouth and open wide, but I hesitate. I hate brain freezes, but waiting for the ice cream to warm defeats the point of having ice cream in the first place. I shove it in my mouth. No chill comes from my brain down to my spine. Must be a lucky day. I glance at my companions. Takashi reminds me of Emi. He eats large spoonfuls of chocolate and strawberry, taking little time between each bite. His friend eats his a bit slower. Probably to avoid brain freezes. Or maybe to enjoy the flavor, but you can still kind of do that while eating fast. He catches my stare.

"So, Tezuka..."

"You can call me Rin if you want. I think we get along well enough for that. But maybe you're the kind of guy that calls people by their last name, so I won't force you to call me Rin and you can keep calling me Tezuka."

He smiles.

"You can call me Akio, then. Anyway, I was talking with Takashi about your mural the other day. It's pretty impressive. I really like the choice of color. It makes it really stand out."

I swallow some ice cream.

"It's possible you'll get seven years of bad luck. Thanks, though."

Takashi stops eating and raises his eyebrows.

"I thought it was finished? Are you not satisfied with it?"

"It is. I am. It's just..."

I pause for a moment. Words juggle in my head, but I can't find the right one.

"Is there a word for when you go look for something in your room, and then forget what you were looking for, but you know it was important?"

"Like you're missing something?" suggests Akio.

"Yeah. Kind of. Not really."

Takashi's expression becomes a little more serious.

"I think I get it. Is it like when you just know the answer to a quiz, but you can't write it down?"

I'm slightly put off guard. I wouldn't have described it like that, yet it encapsulates the feeling pretty well. I nod energetically.

"That's a bit like how I feel about it, yeah."

"I have the same thing when I draw. It's awful, and it comes back at you at the worst moment. I don't think there's a word for it, though."

"So it's basically missing something." Akio puffs and rolls his eyes. "Artists."

It makes his friend laugh, and I catch myself smiling.

We finish eating, and head back to school. We part ways in front of the dorms.

Maeda's grin is slightly larger than it usually is.

"Well, that was fun. We should do this more often."

I frown.

"I don't know. Eating ice cream often isn't good for your health."

"You don't strike me as someone who pays attention to that."

"I don't, but Emi does. She'll be pretty mad when I tell her I ate some. Maybe I shouldn't."

They both chuckle and head towards the boys' dorm.

Takashi waves at me.

"Well, see you around, Rin. Good luck with your exams!"

"Thanks."

I head inside the dorm. Maybe I was wrong. Maybe people don't get less interesting with time. I wonder what the cafeteria will serve for dinner.
Last edited by kaserkin on Fri Dec 18, 2015 1:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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brythain
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Re: Butterflies and Ice Cream

Post by brythain » Sun Jul 05, 2015 8:07 pm

That's good Rin there. Somehow fairly well in character, interesting to think about, fascinating to listen to. Nice!

Edit: read through a couple times more and decided I liked your Akio and Takashi as well. :)
Last edited by brythain on Sun Jul 05, 2015 11:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Post-Yamaku, what happens? After The Dream is a mosaic that follows everyone to the (sometimes) bitter end.
Main Index (Complete)Shizune/Lilly/Emi/Hanako/Rin/Misha + Miki + Natsume
Secondary Arcs: Rika/Mutou/AkiraHideaki | Others (WIP): Straw—A Dream of SuzuSakura—The Kenji Saga.
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Re: Butterflies and Ice Cream

Post by swampie2 » Sun Jul 05, 2015 9:08 pm

It's tough to write a first person story from Rin's perspective, at least for me it is, but I think you nailed it pretty well.

I like that you gave her Synaesthesia too, that works really well.

Looking forward to part two.
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Re: Butterflies and Ice Cream

Post by Mirage_GSM » Mon Jul 06, 2015 7:23 am

I agree you write a pretty good Rin. I'm not sure the canon version is quite as sociable with other students, but you've got some good chemistry going there.

Spelling and grammar are okay except for a persistent problem with pronouns:
to eat lunch with Emi and I today.
with Emi and me
and she had one when her and Maeda were orange and interesting.
she and Maeda
He spoke to Emi and I yesterday.
Emi and me
Emi > Misha > Hanako > Lilly > Rin > Shizune

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kaserkin
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Re: Butterflies and Ice Cream

Post by kaserkin » Mon Jul 06, 2015 5:13 pm

Thanks for all the kind responses!
brythain wrote:That's good Rin there. Somehow fairly well in character, interesting to think about, fascinating to listen to. Nice!

Edit: read through a couple times more and decided I liked your Akio and Takashi as well. :)
brythain is the first person to comment my story! Yay! :D
I'm glad you like it! As I've said before, After the Dream as been a major inspiration for me. The only nitpick I have with it is that it has no Akio and/or Takashi in it! They're the best background characters! :lol:

swampie2 wrote:It's tough to write a first person story from Rin's perspective, at least for me it is, but I think you nailed it pretty well.

I like that you gave her Synaesthesia too, that works really well.

Looking forward to part two.
Thanks! I'm a slow writer, but I'm already halfway through the second chapter. I'll try to finish it soon!
Sharp-O wrote:I agree that writing Rin's POV seems like a daunting task but I think you managed it pretty well. :D
Thanks!
Mirage_GSM wrote:I agree you write a pretty good Rin. I'm not sure the canon version is quite as sociable with other students, but you've got some good chemistry going there.

Spelling and grammar are okay except for a persistent problem with pronouns:
to eat lunch with Emi and I today.
with Emi and me
and she had one when her and Maeda were orange and interesting.
she and Maeda
He spoke to Emi and I yesterday.
Emi and me
I'm glad you like my version of Rin!
It's funny that you commented on those pronouns. I had them that way in my first draft.

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Re: Butterflies and Ice Cream

Post by swampie2 » Mon Jul 06, 2015 5:47 pm

kaserkin wrote:
swampie2 wrote:Werds
Thanks! I'm a slow writer, but I'm already halfway through the second chapter. I'll try to finish it soon!
Don't rush it, I've made that mistake myself a couple of times :lol:
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kaserkin
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Re: Butterflies and Ice Cream

Post by kaserkin » Tue Aug 11, 2015 2:20 pm

It took me slightly more than a month, but I've finished the second chapter. Criticism is always welcome!

Chapter 2: Other Invitations

The school bell rings. The exams are over. Everyone in class seems happy and relieved. I think I am happy too, but I'm not sure. There's only a couple days of class left, and then a month long holiday. Most people are leaving to faraway places like Kyoto or Hokkaido or the city where Emi lives. I am not. Emi almost jumps on me as I step out of the door.

"So, Rin, how do you think you did?"

"I've answered all the questions."

I'm not sure if my answers are right, though. It’s not easy to know if they are. When Nomiya asked me if I wanted to show my paintings to some friend of his, I answered 'I don't know', and it seemed to be the right answer. It wasn't, and he kept asking me about it. But for Emi, getting the answers right doesn't seem to matter. Answering is enough.

"Great! I think I did pretty well, too!"

She smiles. It looks like the smile of the cat from that movie Sis and me kept watching, the one with the mushrooms and the cards and the top hats. But now Sis has grown up, and she doesn't want to watch that movie with me. I smile too. Maybe it is contagious.

We walk towards the dorms, and Emi talks about the exam again. The sky is full of clouds that grow increasingly grey. I hope it rains this afternoon, or maybe tomorrow. I'm not sure what's best. I wonder what clouds taste like. I thought they tasted like cotton candy for a while, but someone told me they were made of really cold water, like popsicles. I hope it's not watermelon popsicles.

"So, you want to do something to celebrate?"

'Celebrate what?' I almost ask, before remembering that the exams are over, and that we'll soon be on holiday, and that I'll stay at school.

"I'd like to go to the aquarium. It's been a while."

She puffs.

"We went there like two months ago. I don't think it's changed much since then."

"Like I said, it's been a while. 'A while' can be-"

"How about ice cream? I'll treat you." Emi says, cutting off my reasoning.

I ponder for a moment. It's a very enticing offer. Emi rarely offers to pay for ice cream.

"I don't know. I already had some the other day. I'm not sure it's healthy to eat so much ice cream.”

She makes that pouty face of hers, and I expect to be scolded. I shouldn't have told her.

"Wait, when did you get ice cream?"

"Last week, after the Art Club meeting. It must have been Monday, since that's then we always meet."

"So you got some on your own? You could have told me, I would've joined you."

"No. I went with Takashi Maeda and his friend, Akio Hayashi. You know, the boy in the Art Club with the French hat, and his friend, the boy with the cane. They invited me."

Emi suddenly giggles in a way only Emi can.

"My my, seems like you're having quite a success with boys, aren't you?”

"Really?"

"Well, it's kind of a date, isn't it?"

Takashi paid me for my ice cream. That's what boys are supposed to do when they invite a girl for a date, right? Aren't the boy and the girl supposed to kiss at the end, though? Do boys usually bring a friend? I've not been invited to many dates.

"No, I don't think so."

Emi giggles and gives me a light tap on the shoulder.

"I was teasing you, Rin. So, you up for some delicious hyper caloric treats?"

I shrug, and she drags me to town. Emi always takes a large strawberry cup, even if it's not the best here. At least she doesn't mix it with chocolate. She eats a huge spoonful that barely fits in her mouth, and she somehow manages to gulp it down in an instant before talking.

"I'll stay at home for the first two weeks, and I'll come to the track every morning to run. Then we could eat lunch together and you could come to my place in the afternoon, if you want."

I nod. I think she told me that before. It's good she reminds me of it.

"Yeah. Sure. What about the next two weeks?"

She looks down for a second at her ice cream for a second, and makes her puppy dog eyes. I don't like when she does that. I like puppies. But puppies make puppy dog eyes because they are puppies. Emi always makes them for other reasons.

"I'm visiting my grandparents. I'll be back on the last few days though. Sorry to leave you alone, Rin."

"I don't think I'll be alone. The Mystery Toilet Girl always stays here during the holidays."

Emi frowns.

"You should stop calling her that. It's mean, and you know that her name is Hanako, Rin."

She's probably right. I've already heard people call her either that or Ikezawa. Still, we haven't been properly introduced to each other, so I keep calling her Mystery Toilet Girl. It suits her well.

"Anyway, Hisao told me she's also going on holiday. She's visiting Hokkaido with her newspaper club friends."

I look outside the window. The sunlight breaks through the heavy clouds. Maybe heavy isn't the right word to describe something that has no weight. I'm quite sure I'm not very happy now.

Emi finishes her ice cream, and looks at me . She makes her puppy dog eyes for a second before grinning widely.

"Don't worry, you won't really be alone! Hisao stays here for most the holidays. I'm sure he won't mind keeping you company."

"I don't think boys are allowed to help girls get dressed."

She frowns a little."

"Hum. That's not what I meant, but you have a point. I think Katayama stays too. Maybe she could help you, if you ask her."

Katayama?

"You know, the second year girl who has her room in front of Ikuno's."

Maybe I was wrong. Hisao wasn't the psychic spy, and it was Emi all along. That would be quite the twist.

"Oh. The creepy one with red eyes. Got it."

"Why are you so mean today?"

"Am I?"

Emi sighs, and takes a look at her watch.

"So, you still want to go to the aquarium? We're still in time to catch the bus."

The bus Emi takes stops near the aquarium before stopping at Emi's mum's house, so I took it with her. She didn’t want to visit it, so I went in on my own. There aren't many people today. There were more last time. Most were elementary schoolchildren. I wonder if it's because of the weather.

I pay my ticket, and walk for a while. I glance at a near aquarium. An amorphous mass of green, yellow, blue, orange, grey, red and white swims in it. but it quickly disperses, becoming small groups of fish. I close my eyes, trying to remember what it looked like, but it's hard to focus. I wish I had brought some paint. The pencil I have wouldn't work. I walk away from the aquarium, and I notice him. Takashi Maeda is walking in my direction. He looks less grumpy than he usually does.

He waves at me. I'd wave back, but I can't, so I just nod, and I go near the mantas.

"Hey, Rin."

He is standing next to me. One of the mantas looks at us curiously.

"Hello."

Takashi stops looking at the manta, and turns his head in my direction.

"I didn't know you liked marine fauna."

"Maybe I don't like it."

"Why are you here, then?"

"Good question. I like coming here to see the fish. They're so different to the animals you usually see. But I didn't know you liked it either, so we're kind of even."

"Yeah. Speaking of even, I think you owe me some money, don't you?"

"Maybe."

He grins.

"It's okay if you don't have it now. I still got half a year to pester you about it."

"Yeah, I guess."

"How did the Science exam go?"

"I answered all the questions."

He nods.

"I hope I got enough of them right."

"I don't think hope as anything to do with it."

He chuckles.

"Yeah, I guess you're right."

I hope I'm not.

"Anyway, are you doing something during the holidays?"

"Yes. I'm staying at school."

"Really? Don't you go to visit your family or go on a trip with friends?"

"No."

"That sucks."

I shrug.

"I'm kind of used to it."

"Well, I guess that makes two of us, then."

"Two of what?"

"I'm staying too. My parents live in the city and I go back home every weekend, so don't really need to visit them. I was supposed to go on a trip with Akio, Taro, and maybe Ritsu, but Akio's parents decided to go somewhere in Europe at the last minute, and he has to watch his sister, so it kind of fell apart."

"It won't be just the two of us, then. Hisao's staying for a while, and Emi too. You can come to have lunch with us, if you want."

Takashi grins.

"Sure, why not?"
Last edited by kaserkin on Thu Dec 17, 2015 7:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Butterflies and Ice Cream

Post by dewelar » Tue Aug 11, 2015 10:09 pm

Hm. This isn't bad so far. Rin's thoughts seem a little too on-the-nose at times, but otherwise this is one of the better representations of her that I've seen to date. I especially like the idea that she enjoys the aquarium -- that very much aligns with my headcanon for her. Will keep an eye on Takashi, though :wink:.
Rin is orthogonal to everything.
Stuff I've written: Developments, a continuation of Lilly's (bad? neutral?) ending - COMPLETE!

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Re: Butterflies and Ice Cream

Post by emmjay » Wed Aug 12, 2015 5:20 am

Okay, now I really want some chocolate and strawberry ice cream. (Neapolitan would also be good.)
My hat is always off to anyone who does a good job of getting into Rin's head, and you've certainly done a fine job here. (And I agree with dewelar, aquariums seem right up Rin's alley.)
She looks down for a second at her ice cream for a second, and makes her puppy dog eyes. I don't like when she does that. I like puppies. But puppies make puppy dog eyes because they are puppies. Emi always makes them for other reasons.
Rin may be scatterbrained at times, but she's no dummy...
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Re: Butterflies and Ice Cream

Post by Sadako » Thu Aug 13, 2015 4:28 pm

This is a very nice piece of work.

I love how everyone has their own take on Rin, all a little bit different. I seriously think you’ve done her justice – she seems to have lost just a little of her… What’s the best term for the quality of being quintessentially Rin? Rin-ness? Rinosity? Rinnitude! She’s lost a little bit of her Rinnitude in the second part, but then again, whose to say that Rin today is the same as Rin yesterday or tomorrow? She’s a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma, after all…
kaserkin wrote:She smiles. It looks like the smile of the cat from that movie Sis and me kept watching, the one with the mushrooms and the cards and the top hats. But now Sis has grown up, and she doesn't want to watch that movie with me. I smile too. Maybe it is contagious.
Is a sister for Rin canon, or is that a something you came up with?
kaserkin wrote:I look outside the window. The sunlight breaks through the heavy clouds. Maybe heavy isn't the right word to describe something that has no weight. I'm quite sure I'm not very happy now.
I wonder what Rin would say if she found out that clouds can actually weigh hundreds of tonnes?

Anyway, thanks for sharing, and looking forward to more!

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kaserkin
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Re: Butterflies and Ice Cream

Post by kaserkin » Thu Aug 13, 2015 4:55 pm

dewelar wrote:Hm. This isn't bad so far. Rin's thoughts seem a little too on-the-nose at times, but otherwise this is one of the better representations of her that I've seen to date. I especially like the idea that she enjoys the aquarium -- that very much aligns with my headcanon for her. Will keep an eye on Takashi, though :wink:.
Thanks! I'm happy you like my story, and congratulations for finishing Developments! It was a great ride! :D

What exactly do you mean by 'on-the-nose'? Do you mean that her thoughts too straightforward?
emmjay wrote:Okay, now I really want some chocolate and strawberry ice cream. (Neapolitan would also be good.)
My hat is always off to anyone who does a good job of getting into Rin's head, and you've certainly done a fine job here. (And I agree with dewelar, aquariums seem right up Rin's alley.)
She looks down for a second at her ice cream for a second, and makes her puppy dog eyes. I don't like when she does that. I like puppies. But puppies make puppy dog eyes because they are puppies. Emi always makes them for other reasons.
Rin may be scatterbrained at times, but she's no dummy...
Thank you! And yes, Rin is no dummy. She's just a bit aloof.
Sadako wrote:This is a very nice piece of work.

I love how everyone has their own take on Rin, all a little bit different. I seriously think you’ve done her justice – she seems to have lost just a little of her… What’s the best term for the quality of being quintessentially Rin? Rin-ness? Rinosity? Rinnitude! She’s lost a little bit of her Rinnitude in the second part, but then again, whose to say that Rin today is the same as Rin yesterday or tomorrow? She’s a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma, after all…
kaserkin wrote:She smiles. It looks like the smile of the cat from that movie Sis and me kept watching, the one with the mushrooms and the cards and the top hats. But now Sis has grown up, and she doesn't want to watch that movie with me. I smile too. Maybe it is contagious.
Is a sister for Rin canon, or is that a something you came up with?
kaserkin wrote:I look outside the window. The sunlight breaks through the heavy clouds. Maybe heavy isn't the right word to describe something that has no weight. I'm quite sure I'm not very happy now.
I wonder what Rin would say if she found out that clouds can actually weigh hundreds of tonnes?

Anyway, thanks for sharing, and looking forward to more!
Thanks! I think her "Rinnitude" varies each day, like you said.

Rin's family gets exactly one off-hand mention in her route. We do not know if she has siblings, but I think Aura mentioned somewhere that she's a single child. I want to give the Tezuka family a role in this story, and Rin having a sister seemed reasonable. I recall there was a one-shot somewhere in which she also has a sister.

Who cares about how much clouds weight? What is really important is whether they taste like popsicles or not! :P

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dewelar
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Location: The Fifth Thing

Re: Butterflies and Ice Cream

Post by dewelar » Thu Aug 13, 2015 10:42 pm

kaserkin wrote:
dewelar wrote:Hm. This isn't bad so far. Rin's thoughts seem a little too on-the-nose at times, but otherwise this is one of the better representations of her that I've seen to date. I especially like the idea that she enjoys the aquarium -- that very much aligns with my headcanon for her. Will keep an eye on Takashi, though :wink:.
Thanks! I'm happy you like my story, and congratulations for finishing Developments! It was a great ride! :D
Thanks. It was a lot of fun to write (and in hindsight I'm glad I didn't believe the people who said it would take me years to write :)).
What exactly do you mean by 'on-the-nose'? Do you mean that her thoughts too straightforward?
Something like that, yeah. I've always believed that Rin's thoughts go off on tangents a lot (which explains her meandering speech patterns and also contributes to her difficulty in communicating), even if they do eventually circle back to where they're supposed to be most of the time.
Rin is orthogonal to everything.
Stuff I've written: Developments, a continuation of Lilly's (bad? neutral?) ending - COMPLETE!

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kaserkin
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Re: Butterflies and Ice Cream

Post by kaserkin » Thu Dec 17, 2015 7:48 pm

It took me a really long time, but here is chapter 3! I have been terribly busy during the last few months, and writing this chapter proved to be much harder than I expected. The wait for the next one should be much shorter, and more will follow closely. Anyway, I hope you'll enjoy it! Comments and criticism are always welcome.

Chapter 3: Summer Rains

Raindrops chime on my window. My bed sheets smell cold and clean. I slowly get out of them, and glance at the clock. This is weird. Emi should already be here to dress me up before going on her morning run, and we should have had breakfast together. Maybe she forgot about me. She's a pretty forgetful person, but I tend to forget about her more often than she forgets about me, so I think I can forgive her if she has.

Someone is knocking at my door. I sit on my bed.

"It's open."

The door opens, and someone gets inside. I look up. A short blond girl is standing on the threshold. Emi. She is carrying her sports bag and what seems to be a sky blue umbrella, I think, but I am not sure. Things rarely are what they seem. Is it even right to call something sky blue when the sky isn't always that kind of blue? Or even when it's not blue at all? She's not wearing her sport clothes, and grins widely.

"Rise and shine, Rin! It's well past nine, and it's a wonderful rainy day! Why are you still in bed?"

"You're late. I was waiting for you."

"We're on holiday now, remember?"

"Oh. Right."

"You're lucky I thought about coming to get you anyway. Come on, let's get you dressed."

Emi leaves her umbrella near the door, comes closer to me, and helps me slid out of my pajamas. She grabs a clean shirt from my wardrobe and drapes it over my shoulders. Her small, dexterous fingers start buttoning it up from top to bottom, and then tie my sleeves. She's pretty good at it. She was more clumsy when she started dressing me on our first year at school.

She helps me into my trousers. Something feels strange. Emi's hair doesn't have that faint smell of coconut and shampoo it usually has.

"You haven't taken a shower."

Emi shakes her head. I frown. I don't often shower in the morning, since showers ruin my sleep, but Emi usually does.

"Why?"

"I'll take one later. I haven't run yet this morning. It's raining buckets right now, in case you hadn't noticed."

I glance outside the window.

"I don't see any buckets. But it's raining a lot."

She chuckles, and takes me by the sleeve.

"Come on, if you hurry we'll manage to grab breakfast."

There aren't many people in the cafeteria. Saki Enomoto and some other girls from our class are leaving it. I notice Katayama sitting alone at a table close to one of the large windows. She is paler than the porcelain dolls Grandma used to give to Sis and me when we were younger, but twice as creepy. Sis loved them, though. Tomohiko never got dolls, since he was, and still is, a boy, but he didn't seem to dislike them, either. I didn't like them. They were always sitting on my shelf, looking at me with their red, creepy, emotionless eyes while I slept, a bit like how Katayama is doing, except I'm awake now. I quickly turn my eyes away from her.

There is no queue to get served. Emi takes some bread and strawberry jelly for herself, and an orange juice box and a bowl of cereal for me. We sit at a table not far from the exit. Emi starts spreading jelly on her slices of bread, or maybe spreading slices of bread over her jelly. She takes one, and eats half of it with a single bite.

"By the way, Rin, have you actually asked Katayama to help you dress?"

"No."

"Why not? She's a nice girl. I don't know why you don't like her."

I start eating my cereals. They are too crunchy. I should put milk into them.

"She's strange."

She puffs.

"You're strange too, you know. I think you two will get along just fine."

I shrug.

"Maybe there are different kind of strange, and the sort of strange I am doesn't like the creepy sort of strange she is."

She giggles.

"Maybe. You should ask her anyway. I won't always be able to help you."

She glances outside the window, and then looks at her watch.

"It seems like the weather is improving, but I doubt it'll hold long enough for our picnic. The rain sure loves to ruin my plans lately."

"I don't think the rain has anything against you."

"I hope not."

She takes her phone out of her pocket, glances at the screen and starts typing a message. I finish my cereals and take a sip of orange juice.

"Anyway, I'm going to run with Hisao before it starts raining again."

"Okay. I'll come with you."

Emi's eyes widen.

"Really? You want to run too?"

"Not really. I wanted to paint a bit, but it has stopped raining, and that's not good for what I wanted to paint, so I'll come to see you run."

She puffs and rolls her eyes.

"I think you'll be able to paint later today, Rin. I'm glad to hear we're your last resort."

I'm not sure about that. I've already forgotten what I wanted to paint. I follow her to the girl's changing room. She's ready in a couple of minutes, and we head outside.

Hisao and Takashi Maeda are sitting on the bleachers, engaged in a conversation about giant robots and crazy teenage girls. Takashi seems to be the one conversing the most. Hisao notices us, and waves in our direction. Emi waves at him too, and goes closer to them. Takashi turns his head in my direction.

"Good morning, Rin! And hey there, Ibarazaki."

"Hello."

Emi gives him a short nod and looks at Hisao, smiling.

"Hey Hisao! Sorry for coming so late."

"It's alright. I think Nurse is reasonable enough to understand why we ran later today."

Takashi grins at him.

"You don't know him very well, do you? You better hope he never finds out you almost skipped exercising today."

Emi giggles, and Hisao smiles thinly.

"He's right, you know. We better catch up."

They walk towards the track and start stretching. I sit next to Takashi. He glazes at Emi for a moment before turning his head in my direction, grinning.

"I've heard we're having a picnic for lunch."

"You have good informants."

He chuckles.

"You could say that. You ever had one with such a beautifully gloomy sky?"

Does he really like it when it's gloomy and rainy? I'm not sure. Some people say things and they don't really mean it, and it's not always easy to tell. Hisao does that a lot. I do it too at times, but I really mean most of what I say. I nod.

"I did, actually. It didn't last long, though. The rain loves to ruin Emi's plans."

He laughs. He picks up a bag he had at his feet, and takes a soda can out of it. He opens it and brings it close to his mouth, but he hesitates.

"Do you want a sip?"

"Do you have a straw? The drinking kind of straw, not the kind you find in the countryside."

He shakes his head.

"No, sorry. I could pour you some, though."

I shrug.

"Okay."

He brings his can close to me. I open my mouth, and he slowly pours some soda in it. It's lemonade. It makes me frown.

"You don't like it?"

"It's fizzy. Fizzy drinks make my nose itch, and it's hard to scratch my nose. And it's bitter, too. Fizzy and bitter don't mix well."

He grins.

"I guess you have a point."

Takashi finishes his lemonade in a few swigs. He tosses the can in the bin next to us and takes a notebook and a pencil out of his bag. He starts doodling and looks almost grumpy. The lines and circles slowly become familiar faces. It's Emi and Hisao, running and looking happy.

"That's not what they look like."

He turns his head in my direction.

"Why do you say that?"

"Hisao doesn't look very happy. Well, he does in your drawing, but he still kind of looks like a sad person that looks sad outside of it. You said you were going to cheer him up, but you're not very good at that."

He shrugs.

"I think he's getting better. He doesn't mope around as much and actually talks to more people. Well, mostly to Akio and me, but it's a start, don't you think?"

I shrug too and glance at the track field. Hisao and Emi have stopped running. Hisao looks tired, but there's a smile on his lips. It's a small smile, and almost sad, but larger than what his smiles were in the days before the Butterfly Whisperer left. Maybe it's easier to miss someone when they are gone and you know you can't get them back. I look back at Takashi's drawing, then at him. He looks a bit like one of the statues in Grandma's house, except he has hair and isn't fat.

"You draw well, but everything looks grey."

He turns is head slightly in my direction, and his dark blue eyes meet mine. He grins.

"Thanks, I guess. Nomiya told me I should work on my colors, but it's tough. I guess I don't have a talent for it like you."

I shrug. I feel a small raindrop on my cheek, then two on my nose. Takashi closes his notebook, puts it in his bag, and takes out one of those collapsible umbrellas. He opens it over our heads. Emi and Hisao come closer to us. She looks at the sky and makes her puppy dog eyes. Maybe she hopes the rain will change its mind. It doesn't. She looks at Hisao, and her face becomes a scolding frown.

"I guess you're happy we'll have to call this a day, you lazy jerk."

Hisao takes an offended look.

"A lazy jerk? Me? Those are vile allegations, Miss!"

Emi sticks out her tongue, and Hisao chuckles.

"Well, I guess that's it for our picnic. All the delicious snacks I made are wasted!"

Takashi reaches his hand out of the safety of the umbrella and makes his grumpy face.

"It's a shame, really. It's barely a drizzle."

Hisao raises a hand.

"The weather could improve again. Maybe it'll be over before lunch."

"We can still eat inside. It'd be like an indoors picnic."

Hisao has a strange look on his face.

"Isn't the point of a picnic is eating is eating outside?"

I guess he has a point. I wasn't sure if indoors picnics were something that people actually did, since I never had one, but it seemed possible to me. Takashi smirks.

"I like Rin's idea."

Emi puffs.

"Don't indulge her, Maeda."

He turns in head in her direction, still smirking.

"Am I? I think it's pretty pioneering."

"Guys, could we have this discussion inside? I'd rather shower with hot water."

"Right, but we'll have our check up first."

She sticks out her tongue at Hisao.

"Last to the infirmary is a stinky jerk!"

Hisao barely has the time to say "hey!" before Emi starts running, forcing him to run after her or be a stinky jerk, and leaving Takashi and me alone under his umbrella. He is quickly on her heels, and for an instant he seems to catch up with her, but Emi suddenly dashes a few meters ahead of him, giggling. Hisao laughs too.

Takashi glances at me and snorts. I shrug. We walk together towards the school. The umbrella is small, and I find myself with a shoulder out of its protection. I don't mind, though. Takashi was right. The rain is a light drizzle. Raindrops fall gently on my cheek. I realize I am walking too slowly. Takashi slows a bit too. He tries to cover more of me with his umbrella and looks at me, slightly puzzled. Or is that worry? It's a bit different from his usual grumpy glare.

"Everything okay? Isn't the rain bothering you?"

"I don't dislike the rain. I like it a lot, truth be told."

I look at him too. He's grinning, and I see a glimmer of something in his eyes, but he doesn't say anything. I frown. I was sure he would. The sky grows grayer, and the light jingle of the raindrops falling on the umbrella grows louder with it. The shapes of the buildings and trees become increasingly soft and blurred. I remember what I wanted to paint. I'd like to write it down so I won't forget it anymore, but I don't have a pen.

"Are you sure you are okay? You're looking angry all of a sudden."

"I'm not angry. I'm just..."

I'm about to say frustrated, but is it even the right word? It's more than a simple annoyance, I think, but it's not the angry sort of annoyance that frustration is. I remember that Takashi was drawing Emi and Hisao while they were running.

"You have a pencil, right? Could I borrow it for a second?"

There's a bit of annoyance in his grumpy face now.

"I don't think this is the right place to write. I'll give it to you once we're inside."

"But what if I forget what I wanted to write before we get back inside?"

"You could just tell me. I'll remember."

I frown. Will he? I look at him closely. His grumpy face is gone, and something resembling his usual grin as taken its place. I don't think it's a grin this time.

"I want to paint the school shrouded by the gloomy rainy sky."

His blue eyes study mine for a few long instants. He nods and, we keep walking in silence.
Last edited by kaserkin on Fri Dec 18, 2015 1:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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