Confinement (Miki's Story) [10/30]

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Catgirl Kleptocracy
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Re: Confinement (Miki's Story) [10/30]

Post by Catgirl Kleptocracy » Tue Oct 30, 2012 7:27 am

Two months isn't too bad, right?

Previous Chapter


Taro's left arm was paralyzed, but that didn't keep him from being the best cook in class. He always ate the school lunch, of course, but in his words the cafeteria's handout wasn't “hardy enough to pass for a midday snack.” He always packed a supplement to kick it up to his standard. “I won't settle,” he said, grabbing a rice ball and bouncing it in his one good hand. “Not when it comes to school, not when it comes to women, and certainly not when food is on the line.” Looking me dead in the eyes, he stuffed the ball in his mouth, and—rice grains tumbling from his lips—smiled the widest smile I'd ever seen.

I ate lunch with Taro, Akio, and Lezard three days a week in the cafeteria. I spent the other three days eating with Emi and Rin on the roof, but there was a gravity to the guys in the lunch room that kept me from rocketing up the stairwells everyday when class ended. They weren't as pretty as Emi or Rin, but they didn't need to be. The three of them were like any friend I'd had before coming to Yamaku. It didn't matter that they were disabled. Hanging out with them felt normal. It felt like something the old me would have done.

Behind Taro and his food stained collar, Miki was waiting in line for her meal. At a glance it seemed normal. At a thousand other schools, a thousand other students were being handed rice balls and curry and waiting to meet their friends at any one of the thousands of tables set up in a thousand cafeterias. She was missing a hand, but that wasn't what broke the illusion. It was the little things that reminded me that everything had changed. You get used to seeing a missing hand pretty quick—at least at a glance. There should be a hand there, but it's gone, and after a week or three it stops registering. It's the little things. The things that should be normal, but aren't. When a kid with one prosthetic leg stumbles and spills his tray, it's not the missing limb you wish you could pry your eyes off of. It's the soup spilled across the linoleum floor he left behind that whispers in your ear. You're lying to yourself. This isn't normal. Nothing in your life will ever be normal ever again.

“She's pretty, isn't she?” Akio wasn't looking at me when he spoke. He'd traced my line of sight to the registers, and his grin screamed that he knew I'd been watching Miki. It was the kind of grin a man wears when he thinks he's learned somebody's darkest secret.

I looked back to Miki, and she was pretty. She was resting back against a hand rail—slouched, as usual—holding her tray with her good hand and balancing it with her other wrist. Her shirt was collar up and untucked. Its loose fabric wrinkled in front of her skirt. The wide end of her tie didn't cover the buttons, and the narrow end fell careless in the other direction. At any other school the administration would have thrown a fit. It was always the little things. “Yeah,” I said. “I guess she's pretty.”

“You should go talk to her,” Taro said, taking a break from shoving another rice ball into his mouth. He hadn't even looked, but I knew he knew exactly what Akio and I were talking about. Taro Always Two Steps Ahead. “You haven't been able to keep your eyes off of her all week. Just go tell her you think she's pretty. It's no problem. She's cool like that.”

I didn't tell him I was afraid. Not of her being pretty. I could handle that, because that wasn't what mattered. It was the test scores. Rejection. If she were pretty, and I had to tell her I loved her, I wouldn't have been so afraid. If she rejected me over that, I might have had another heart attack, and that would have been the end of it. I'd either be dead, or I'd be in the hospital for so long that by the time I came back nobody would remember. At worst she would have visited for a few weeks and then stopped coming. Either way, I wouldn't actually have had to deal with being turned down. A rejection over tutoring wasn't enough to give me a heart attack. Mutou would think I'd failed. And I'd have to live with it. “It's not like that,” I said.

Lezard scoffed, and Akio rolled his eyes. Taro studied me for a moment, then nodded. Always so understanding. “Business then,” he said. He picked a piece of candy out of his bag—the kind with the red and yellow wrapper—and shifted it in his fingers as if he were going to tear it open. Then he froze. He passed it off to Lezard. “If you say it isn't about love then it isn't,” he continued, “but whatever it is, you need to get it done. You've been staring at her like a sick puppy for days.”

People gave Taro a hard time because they thought he was slow. And they were right. Taro never got it right the first time. But they didn't realize that it was never the first time that mattered. It was always the second. The test. And Taro studied. He observed. He didn't have the raw intelligence, but he had the drive. One day, he'd be the smartest man in Japan. “I was actually hoping it would work itself out,” I said.

“It never works itself out.” Taro grabbed another candy. This one went to Akio. “At least, not for the best.”

Lezard was still sucking on his candy when he said, “We're not letting you sit back down here until you do. It's embarrassing.”

I turned to Akio, and he nodded. The three wise men had spoken.

Taro handed me a candy of my own, then sent me on my way. Miki had already left through the five-wheelchair-wide double doors. I didn't know where she went for lunch every day. Sometimes I saw her at a table in the cafeteria, but she didn't seem to be on any set schedule. One day with Molly and Ikuno. One with Natsumi and Takashi. Another with some guys from the track team. If I had money to bet, I would have put it all down on her eating with Lezard, Akio, and Taro sometimes when I was with Emi and Rin on the roof, and then spent my winnings betting the other way around. She was all over the place. There was no order to it.

Miki was making her way through the campus commons when I caught up to her. “Miki!”

She turned, the end of her tie fluttering a pill's length from her stomach before flopping back down in its haphazard mess, and smiled. “What's up?” she asked. “Long time no see.”

It hadn't been a long time. Less than an hour, really. But being in the same room as somebody wasn't the same as being with them. Iwanako taught me that the hard way. “Yeah, it's been a while.” Since the festival. We weren't close, so we didn't talk before the practice exam. After meeting with Mutou, I hadn't wanted to. “Where are you off to?”

She held up her tray, cocking her head and waving her wrist over it like a model displaying a juicer in a late night infomercial. “Lunch,” she said, then pointed at the girl's dormitory with her jaw. “Meeting Ritsu in her room. You want to tag?”

Tagging along was the last thing I wanted. I wasn't going to bring up tutoring in front of Ritsu. We'd talk about anything and everything but what we were supposed to. They wouldn't know, so it wouldn't bother them. Ritsu would say something about a watch she wanted. Miki would tell us about that movie she saw with Emi. I'd nod, but I wouldn't really be listening. I'd be thinking about what I was supposed to be asking Miki. About how we used to be able to talk normally, like she and Ritsu were talking, and about how cool that had been. “Thanks, but no,” I said. “I was actually hoping to catch just you, but it can wait.”

“Oh yeah?” She looked to the girl's dorm, then at me. Then the girl's dorm again. “Nah.” Shifting her grip on her tray, she said, “I don't like keeping people waiting. Want to grab a spot out here for lunch? You and me?”

I traced her line of sight to the dorms. Somewhere up there, Ritsu was waiting. “What about your lunch date?”

“Don't worry about it.” A light shrug told me she wasn't worrying about it herself. “I'm supposed to have lunch with Ritsu today, but she was supposed to have lunch with me last Thursday. We can call it karma.”

What I had to say to her was more important than the latest gossip. It wasn't until Miki led me to a nearby picnic table that I realized I was going to impress some responsibility on her by helping her ditch out on a prior engagement. But the breeze was so warm and so gentle it didn't even rustle her tie, and the sun was beating down on the perfectly trimmed grass of the commons, and the shade of the giant oak with the crooked trunk fell so perfectly over the contours of the table that it begged for somebody to rest under it, and when Miki laid her tray down, waved like that infomercial model for me to sit with her, and smiled, I smiled, too.

“So,” she said, using the crook of her left arm and two fingers to open the first of her three cartons of 2% milk. “What can I do for you?”

Just say yes. I'd run it through my mind for the past week. I'd walk up to her and ask, flat out. She'd say yes. The whole conversation would have lasted fifteen seconds, at most. Easy. “I just figured we hadn't talked in a while, so I wanted to see what was up.”

“Just me though, huh?” She leaned forward, resting her chin on her hand. “Not Ritsu?”

I didn't have the guts to ask her straight out, but I hadn't thought the conversation through any other way. I had no idea where to go with it. “Yeah.”

She tried to hide a smile, but I could see the corner of her lips turn. When she couldn't hide it herself, she took a sip of milk. By the time she swallowed, it was gone. “I can dig that. A getting to know you kind of thing.”

“Something like that, yeah.”

Miki smiled again, but this time she didn't bother trying to hide it. If I'd wanted to I could have counted her teeth. “Good,” she said. “I'd been hoping to talk to you again. The way you'd just been staring, though, I was starting to think it would never actually happen.”

The shade was suddenly freezing. If I could have curled into a ball and died there under the oak, I would have. I was praying for a heart attack. “You saw that?”

Miki didn't answer straight away. Her eyes were glued to my face, and every time I thought her smile had stretched as far as it could, it grew wider. She could see me squirming, and she was relishing it. “No,” she finally said. “Taro did.”

Of course. Taro The Backstabber. “And he told you.”

She nodded, but seemed more interested in the curry she was picking apart. It didn't look very good, but it actually wasn't bad. A bit bland, maybe. “Yeah. Wouldn't have noticed it myself, you know, being oblivious and all, but he catches those kinds of things. Keeps me up on who's got eyes on who. Things like that.”

Miki took a bite of her food as if what she was saying had nothing to do with either of us. As if she'd been watching me staring at her for the past week from a distance. Maybe she had been. “I'm sorry.”

She laughed through the food in her mouth, and, struggling to swallow, waved me off. “Don't apologize for it,” she said. “I'm cool like that.” It took her another five seconds to finish swallowing. “So you want to get to know me. Shoot.”

I knew I wasn't going to make tutoring my first question. That was alright. The experiment wasn't working out the way I'd run it through my head, but if it doesn't work the first time, try something new. Work up to the reaction. I took a few seconds for curry, then said, “You never told me where you were from.”

“Nishanmoote,” she said. “On Tanegashima.”

Tanegashima was an island off the coast of the southern Kagoshima mainland. I'd begged my parents for years to go watch one of the rocket launches there. We never went. “That's a bit out of the way, isn't it?”

“Yeah,” Miki said. “And that's the way I like it.”

Her constant staring out of windows and daydreaming started making sense. Yamaku wasn't in the big city, but it was a far cry from being as small a town as Nishanmoote. There were probably more people living in the area than there were on her entire island. If she liked it out of the way, Yamaku wasn't it. “If you're from all the way out in Tanegashima, why did you—”

“Hold on there, Tiger,” she said, pointing to my tray. “Your food's going to get cold if you keep talking.”


“Grab a bite,” she said. “Besides, if you ask all the questions I'll never get one in myself. Then you'd get all your kicks, and I'd be left in the cold. That'd be a travesty.”

When I started playing along with her get-to-know-you deal, I hadn't thought that she'd want to ask questions, too, but she looked too eager to turn down. “Fair's fair.” I took a mouthful of some of the curry. The chef seemed to have added some new spices, but it tasted as bland as it had been before. “Shoot.”

“What do you miss most? From your old life.”

I'd chewed the curry, but Miki's question kept me from swallowing. It sat in my mouth as a mushy, tasteless lump. The little things were the constant reminder of change. Once in a while, though, something big would strike like a comet carving a mile-wide crater. 'Old life'. Like the one I was living at Yamaku wasn't the same. Where did the 'old life' end? The heart attack? My first day at Yamaku? Forget finding an answer. I barely even knew the question. “The stars,” I said, even though I didn't know which life they belonged to. I wasn't sure they belonged to either.

“Nice view of the sky at home?”

“No.” It sounded absurd, and I could tell from the look on Miki's face that she hadn't followed. If she were still that infomercial model, the juicer had broken down mid demonstration. “Too much light pollution. There's not much to look at.” After I took a sip of my own milk, she still looked perplexed. I didn't want to explain my hospital stay, so I decided to keep her talking. “I'll bet you get a pretty good view back at your place though.”

She took the subject change in stride. Smiled, even. “Best in Japan,” she said. “Hell, it's all anybody ever talks about down there. I don't know. Never put much stock in all that myself.”

It was my turn to ask a question, but I felt we were on a good track, and I wasn't ready to ask the big one. Never ruin a good thing. “Why not?”

She shrugged. “Because who cares?” She moved to clasp her fingers together, and only looked a little surprised when her hand fell on her wrist. Nothing to make any big deal about. It was only a little thing. “Everyone's always talking about the stars and how they're the future and all that shit. My dad does that, you know? The star stuff. Used to come home every night and talk about it, like anybody gave a damn. Like it was the most important thing in the world. Like they weren't so far away nobody could ever actually touch them. I just hate how people get so lost in it.” Her thumb was rubbing against her wrist. The bandage was loose enough that it left a trail. “Like Mutou.”

It was almost too perfect. Talk about Mutou. From there it was only a hop to studying. “You don't like Mutou?”

Laughing, Miki shook her head. “I like him just fine. He's just spacy.” She tried to take a sip, but laughed before her carton reached her mouth. “And I mean, it suits him,” she said, cupping her hand back around her wrist. With her holding it up, it was hard to look away. “I just wish he'd come back down a little more often. Seem more like a real person.”

“He might be a little more in touch with what's going on here than you think.” So close. I couldn't tell her about Mutou's proposition, but we were skirting the edges. Miki's bandage shifted as she twisted her wrist in her hand. It was frayed near the base.

“Says his rising star,” Miki said, deadpan. Her hand shifted, blocking her stump from view. When I looked up, her eyes tore into mine. How long had she been watching me watch her wrist?

“Yeah,” I said. I couldn't stand up to her gaze, so I looked away. Did people stare at my heart when I wasn't watching? I realized a second too late that when I lowered my head, my eyes went straight to her stump.

“Your question,” she said, just as flat as before.

I'd blown it. Our simple 'get to know you' had been ripped apart like a juicer tears an orange into pulp. All because I couldn't look away. Tutoring was out of the question. I knew what she was expecting me to ask, but I didn't want to. Her lips had flat-lined. I couldn't read anything out of her. Except for her eyes. They were dark. Overpowering. She didn't open her mouth, but she didn't need to. Her eyes spoke for her. Go ahead, motherfucker. Pull the trigger and ask. “How did you lose your hand?”

Her eyes didn't move. I wasn't stupid enough to look away again. Resting her wrist on the table, she pushed her tray away with her right hand. Her plate wasn't even half empty, but it was clear we were done eating. “What's it matter?”

She wasn't even trying to hide the stump anymore. It lay flat on the picnic bench between us. I couldn't see anything else in my peripherals. What was I supposed to say with her missing hand spread out all over the table? “It's part of who you are.”

Finally, she looked away. “No it isn't.”

I hated my heart. Every pump it forgot reminded me of how weak I was. The rest of me worked fine, but my heart beat to the wrong cadence. Still, it was my heart. One day, I'd met a girl under the branches of a barren tree, and everything changed. “Whatever happened brought you here. That's important.”

Her eyes met mine again, but the power glare was gone, and she licked her lips. “You really think so?”


It was barely a twitch, but she broke eye contact. A short downward glance. There was only one thing on the table with enough gravity to pull her sight from mine. Before she could have blinked, she focused back on me. “Then it was an accident.”

Any malice her eyes had shown before was gone. Somehow that was worse. I wanted her to glare again. I wanted anything but the nothing I was seeing. “Look, I'm sorry if I—”

“No,” she said, shaking her head. She wasn't looking at me. She wasn't even looking at her wrist. It looked like she was staring into her lap. “It's my question now.” After the short respite, she looked back. It was the nothing all over again. “Why did you really want to talk to me?”

I hadn't told anybody about my meeting with Mutou. Taro couldn't have known. She'd figured it out on her own. “What do you mean?”

“I mean why are we really sitting here?” Miki leaned forward, raising her hand to hold up her chin. It looked like the move was more out of fatigue than curiosity. “We talked before, and it was cool. Then nothing. Then you stare. You don't pussyfoot around for a week over a meet and greet. What do you want?”

I wanted her to show some expression. Rage. Disappointment. Even pain. It would have hurt less than what she was giving. I wanted to forget my meeting with Mutou had ever happened. That he put so much reverence in me. That he cared. I wanted something that I could control. I wanted a working heart. “I wanted to know if you would like to study with me sometime.”

She didn't move. “That's it?”

It sounded so stupid when I actually said it out loud. So simple. It was supposed to be my heart that was weak. Why had it made me such a coward? “Yes.”

There was no way to tell whether she believed me or not. It probably didn't matter. But she laughed. It wasn't the bouncy, devil-may-care laugh she was known for. It was a cocktail of disbelief and awe. “No,” she said. “I don't think so.”

My heart skipped a beat. Then another. Then it fell back into rhythm. Not even close to a heart attack. I wasn't sure what to say, so I said nothing.

Just when I thought she was about to leave, she dropped her hand. She was still leaning forward. Closer, even. “Why didn't you just ask me?”

“If I had, would you have said yes?”

For the first time, the nothing in her eyes gave way. It was surprise that filled the gaping hole, and she fell silent. For a moment, I knew she was just as unsure of what to say as I had been. After a long pause, she sighed. “No.”

I lifted my hand, as if showing her she'd answered her own question. In fact, she had.

Her lips moved. I didn't need to be a master lip reader to tell that what she was mouthing would have gotten her into a lot of trouble. Her head turned to her lap, then to her wrist, and finally back to me. “Did it really mean that much to you?”


She sighed again—longer this time, and deeper—then loosened her tie. It hadn't looked tight enough to have been constricting in the first place, but she pulled it until the knot hung just over her chest. We sat for a full minute in silence. I had nothing more to say, so I waited. “Alright,” she finally relented. “If you're so dead set on this study thing, we can do it. But it's going to be conditional.”

There was no way I'd heard her right. After butchering the conversation so badly, she could have left it at 'no' and been finished with it. I didn't know why she was stepping back on her answer, but I didn't care. “Shoot.”

“It was all a bullshit excuse,” she said, “but I kind of liked this whole 'getting to know you' thing. I get three questions. You answer them all and we'll hit the books, but if I don't like your answers, we're done, and if I think you're lying, I'll walk.”

I was desperate for anything to grab onto, and her terms were as good as I was going to get. “Shoot.”

Miki nodded, and clasped her hand over her wrist as she had before. She wasn't an infomercial model anymore. She was an interrogator. “Was this study thing your idea?”

She wanted an honest answer, but even if I was honest, she'd juice the tutoring plan if she didn't like what she heard. I didn't think I could give her an answer she would like. She probably knew that. It came down to a matter of degrees—how much wouldn't she like what I told her. Mutou asked me not to tell her it was his idea, and from what she'd said about him earlier, if I told her straight that it had come from him she'd likely walk. But he also never told me what she actually got on the test. It was a grey area, but enough to give the idea without actually telling me. Thank you, Mutou. “No.”

Miki nodded. If it wasn't my idea, she had to have known where it came from. It was unspoken, but Mutou may as well have been sitting there with us. Right next to her missing hand. “Do you actually care about how I do? My grades, I mean.” She drummed her fingers against her wrist. The pitter-patter of her skin striking her stump nearly matched my pulse. “Any other interest you have in this aside, if we do this study deal, and I come out of it and flat out, fall-on-my-ass fail, would that mean anything to you?”

I started saying 'yes'. I wanted to say 'yes'. The only word running through my mind was 'yes'. But if I took Mutou out of the equation, it didn't balance. I wanted to call Miki my friend, but I still barely knew her. It would have been awesome if she got top marks, but if I had heard she aced Mutou's exam I wouldn't have thought twice about it. If she failed, I'd feel bad. I'd tell her how sorry I was, and how she was sure to do better next time. How we could fix it. But even then, it wouldn't mean anything to me. The tutoring idea was all about me and Mutou. Miki might as well have been Molly as far as the plan was concerned. Hell, she might as well have been a rock. “No.”

For a long time, Miki didn't move. She'd stopped drumming the moment I started speaking. The silence was worse. There's no way to gauge silence, just as you can't measure nothing. Miki always seemed so relaxed. She waved her emotions around like a flag. Sitting with her under the oak, I couldn't read her. It wasn't that I couldn't understand. It was that there wasn't anything to understand in the first place.

When she stirred, I started breathing again. I hadn't even realized I was holding my breath. “Ok then,” she said. “Let me know when you want to start.”

“That's it?”

“Yeah,” she said. “That's it.”

I couldn't believe her. It didn't make any sense. If I'd asked her quick and painless, she would have said no. But she agreed to it after I stared gutless for a week, then ran her in circles and pretty much lied to her about what was going on. “I thought you said you were asking three questions.”

“I did. I'm holding onto the third for later.”


She shrugged. After looking at the clock on her phone, she grabbed her tray and stood. “We're done here for now. I think I'll catch Ritsu for the rest of lunch after all.”

I saw her off, then looked down at my plate. I hadn't eaten much, but I wasn't hungry anymore. The thought of eating made my stomach twist.

“Hey, Hisao!” Miki had turned back around, and she was smiling. It was a weak smile, but earnest. “Thanks for being honest,” she said. “I like you when you're honest.”

I watched her walk off before I picked up my own tray. If I wasn't going to be eating, there was no sense in wasting. Taro could get the job done. I made my way back through the commons, and stopped before going back into the cafeteria. My talk with Miki hadn't gone as planed, but it was done. I could relax. It really was a beautiful day. Out from under the oak, I had to cover my eyes to keep the sun from blinding me. The breeze was warm as it weaved through my hair, and it was fragrant—lilacs and gardenias. Birds chirped from the branches of the trees we'd been sitting under.

When I looked down, my smile faded. I wasn't standing on a staircase. I was standing on a wheelchair ramp. The railing I was leaning against wasn't just a handrail. It was designed to help people get around when they couldn't stand on their own power. It wasn't until then that I realized that when Miki left, she'd walked off in the opposite direction of the dorms. It was always the little things.
Last edited by Catgirl Kleptocracy on Fri Nov 02, 2012 1:44 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Confinement (Miki's Story) [10/30]

Post by Hoitash » Tue Oct 30, 2012 9:34 am

Well, that was quite the twisting and turning of emotions.

Nicely done :thumbsup:

Glad you're still working on it -the writer in me hates to see a project die- and, on a lighter note:
The three wise men had spoken.
I lol'd at this :)
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Re: Confinement (Miki's Story) [10/30]

Post by Mirage_GSM » Tue Oct 30, 2012 12:22 pm

Let me just say, that your Miki is my favourite Miki.

Oh, and having a few male supporting characters other than Kenji doesn't hurt the story one bit!
Emi > Misha > Hanako > Lilly > Rin > Shizune

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Re: Confinement (Miki's Story) [10/30]

Post by Po1ntBlank » Tue Oct 30, 2012 8:37 pm

There are two Miki routes I am reading ATM. One by you, and one by Meadows.

It's crazy, the two Miki's are all but polar opposites. Your's is dark, straightforward, almost cruel, while Meadow's is playful, cheery, and humorous. It's really awesome reading the two of them side by side, especially that they are both about the same point chronologically right now. I look forward to seeing how they both turn out, and seeing which one I like best ;) Hope you finish this!
Hanako: 9.5/10
Emi: 9/10
Rin: 7/10 (Also the last playthrough I did, didn't take it that seriously.
Lilly: 8/10
Shizune: 7/10
Some really great fanfics: Ascent: An Emilogue, Weekend at Hisao's, Listen to your Heart, Miki Route by Meadows, Akira Pseudo-Route by Thanatos02, and Misha Route by Doomish

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Re: Confinement (Miki's Story) [10/30]

Post by Scissorlips » Thu Nov 01, 2012 5:24 am

Even if you do update once in several blue moons, I have to say that when you do, it's consistently really, really good. The prose is flowing and tight, descriptions are vivid, and both Hisao's thoughts and your dialogue have a great balance of being believable and appropriately dramatic. What you did with the juicer analogy was just damn impressive, I literally had to sit back and spend several moments appreciating it. Your interpretation of Miki might be quite different from mine, but it doesn't stop me from enjoying the hell out of your story.
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Re: Confinement (Miki's Story) [10/30]

Post by Catgirl Kleptocracy » Fri Nov 02, 2012 3:24 am

Mirage_GSM wrote:Let me just say, that your Miki is my favourite Miki.

Oh, and having a few male supporting characters other than Kenji doesn't hurt the story one bit!
Thanks, I'm glad you like her character! The guys in the class need love too. They won't be the primary focus of the story, but the game was pretty lopsided in the male:female ratio of characters (and for good reason). Since I have a little more wiggle room, the boys are back in town.
Po1ntBlank wrote:There are two Miki routes I am reading ATM. One by you, and one by Meadows.

It's crazy, the two Miki's are all but polar opposites. Your's is dark, straightforward, almost cruel, while Meadow's is playful, cheery, and humorous. It's really awesome reading the two of them side by side, especially that they are both about the same point chronologically right now. I look forward to seeing how they both turn out, and seeing which one I like best Hope you finish this!

I've been enjoying Meadow's route as well. It's pretty cool that there can be such variety in how characters are written. I really like what he's done with her, and the differences are pretty cool to see. There's definitely a huge contrast in tone to both our interpretations of the character and the stories themselves, but I think that's a benefit to both of us (and you guys get plenty of variety!).

I am glad you guys like the characterization so far. I was a bit worried it would be seen as too far from what we saw of her in game, but I figured that since she only had a handful of lines and one or two appearances that as long as I wasn't contradictory I could make it work. I do have to give Meadows (and Scissorlips--your story is long, but I'm working through it!) props--I think his characterization is actually closer to what little we see of Miki in game. I do have reasons for adapting the character a bit--Of the major reasons, one is a story/thematic reason (but I haven't written that far), and the other is a general writing reason. The second mostly involves conflict. All we see of Miki in the game is light, cheerful, and genuine, but I wanted to pull a little more conflict in from the get-go, and personally I find that happy characters are boring characters. Cheerful Miki works for me as a great walk-on character, but the girls in game had great conflicts (even contradictions) in their characterizations. Easy-going Miki will still be around, but sometimes she's going to have to let the darker, straightforward Miki take the wheel.
Scissorlips wrote:Even if you do update once in several blue moons, I have to say that when you do, it's consistently really, really good. The prose is flowing and tight, descriptions are vivid, and both Hisao's thoughts and your dialogue have a great balance of being believable and appropriately dramatic. What you did with the juicer analogy was just damn impressive, I literally had to sit back and spend several moments appreciating it. Your interpretation of Miki might be quite different from mine, but it doesn't stop me from enjoying the hell out of your story.
I'll see what I can do to keep up on the update times :lol: . Glad you enjoyed the actual writing as well as the story. Thanks especially for the comment about appropriate levels of drama. I was worried some parts were laid on too thick. This story is actually a big change of pace for me--I've never written romance, and what I do usually write is a lot darker and more cynical than the writing here (so far, at least :twisted: ). Let me know if any aspects of Hisao's thought seem to jump way off from what the situation calls for in the future.

Thanks for reading!

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Re: Confinement (Miki's Story) [10/30]

Post by snitsnit » Mon Nov 05, 2012 10:14 pm

All in all, great so far. I've been stuck to the screen since I began reading chapter one. The added male support characters do help quite a bit. Keep up the good work!

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Re: Confinement (Miki's Story) [10/30]

Post by Roamin12 » Mon Nov 12, 2012 12:08 am

My favourite chapter so far, and your Miki is the only dark one I have seen, (Other than the one in one of Doomish's stories) and I can appreciate that. Glad to see the story is still alive!
First Play through: Lilly>Hanako>Emi>Rin>Shizune
Second Play Through: Hanako>Rin>Lilly>Shizune>Emi
I'm a music enthusiast.

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Re: Confinement (Miki's Story) [10/30]

Post by Machoman » Tue Nov 13, 2012 1:20 am


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Re: Confinement (Miki's Story) [10/30]

Post by xero » Wed Mar 06, 2013 10:57 pm

I'll take it that this is a deadfic?
Life is a beautiful lie while death is a painful truth

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Re: Confinement (Miki's Story) [10/30]

Post by Doomish » Thu Mar 07, 2013 11:38 am

You bumped a thread that has not been updated since October and has not been posted in since November to ask that?

Really, dude?

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