'Writing on the Wall' - SX for Cpl_Crud (Mature Content)

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Feurox
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'Writing on the Wall' - SX for Cpl_Crud (Mature Content)

Post by Feurox » Tue Dec 24, 2019 6:43 am

Writing on the Wall.
“I want - I want - I want - was all that she could think about - but just what this real want was she did not know.”
Carson McCullers, The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter.
***

“Hey, can I ask you something?”

I groggily open my eyes. Shiina hasn’t moved since I drifted off, but the film we were watching has already finished. The credits roll up the screen to the sounds of an acoustic guitar. I’m not even sure what we were watching, but it clearly wasn’t very stimulating. I sit up and stretch out.

“Sure, what’s up?” I reply. I don’t think she fell asleep during the movie, but she’s looking out of my window, so I doubt it got her attention either. Then again, who watches the credits?

“Do you ever wish you were a boy?” Shiina asks after a few moments of thinking. She’s not looking at me, but I shrug anyway. I’ve thought about it before, sure, but it’s not exactly a recurring thought.

With her head propped up on her hand like this, Shiina’s hair is splayed out all the way behind her. It’s always been so long, and if I didn’t find long hair super annoying, I’d be jealous of her. It’s such a pretty brown colour, and it always looks so soft! She looks a bit like a princess trapped in a tower, staring out into the woods for her prince charming. Maybe if I were a boy I would…

Ah, yeah. Shiina’s question!

“Sometimes. I wonder if it would be easier,” I finally answer, and she turns to face me now. She doesn’t look sad or anything, but she doesn’t look as cheery as usual. When she showed up outside my door, I thought we’d be watching a funny film and talking about our day, but I guess the film was pretty rubbish, and there’s more on her mind then the weather.

After a few moments of consideration, she nods giddily at my answer. “Yeah, I think the same. There’s so much pressure on girls, when guys just have it so much easier!”

She giggles quietly into her palm, before budging up to sit beside me. She crawls forward and ejects the DVD from my player before putting it away.

“We asking deep questions then?” I ask jokingly, and Shiina’s giggle becomes a slightly nervous one. I lean over and smirk at her.

“Okay…” she agrees, but I’ve obviously put her on edge a bit.

“So, how come I haven’t met any of your friends?” I ask, but my tone has become a bit serious.

Shiina squirms and pulls her blouse from her neck a little, like it’s choking her.

“I uh,” she begins. She twirls her fingers together and rocks back and forth. “Shizune doesn’t… I mean I…”

I giggle, and she relaxes. She’s too easy to wind up really.

“Besides, Shizune isn’t really my friend… we’re more like work colleagues,’ Shiina continues, her voice sounding a bit dejected.

Considering that she doesn’t really talk about Shizune much, I feel a bit guilty for bringing it up. She doesn’t have as many friends as me, but from the little interaction we’ve had outside of my bedroom, I know that Shiina’s wrong about Shizune. That Blonde girl didn’t seem too bad either, but I haven’t interacted with her very much.

“I don’t think that’s true at all!” I reply, catching Shiina off-guard. “You’re definitely friends, why else would you spend so much time doing Student Council stuff instead of hanging out with me!”

She laughs, but still seems pretty down. I’m such an idiot for bringing this up but I have been wondering why Shiina never invites Shizune to hang out with us.

“It’s complicated,” she answers, before lying back onto my carpet. “Besides, Shizune needs me for translating stuff and heavy lifting, I can’t let her down just to goof off with you.”

I cross my arms across my chest and pout, causing Shiina to laugh a bit more genuinely this time. I can’t keep it up for long though, she has a point. Hanging out with friends doesn’t get to take priority over important stuff like that. I’ve blown her off for stuff I find important too.

“Fine,” I stick out my tongue at her, “how is the council stuff anyway?”

Shiina sits back up and adjusts her blouse again; I think it’s too tight for her honestly.

“It’s going well! The Christmas market is in two weeks but Shizune and Lilly say we’re right on schedule!” It’s nice to see Shiina get so passionate about something, especially considering how down she just was.

“That reminds me!” She continues, before clasping my hands with her own. “I haven’t been to a festival here yet, and was wondering if maybe you’d like to join me?”

Her hands feel really warm, and though I used to think I was the master of the puppy-dog eyes , Shiina seems to have me beat. I smile back at her.

“Sure, I’d love too.”

Shiina practically explodes with excitement and pulls me into a tight hug. Considering the size of her chest, I practically get smothered, but it’s a nice feeling so I squeeze back. The hug probably goes on too long, but neither of us pull away for a few seconds, and when we do, she’s still smiling like a child.

Despite the excitement, I can’t help but let out a loud yawn, and Shiina sighs as she begins to get up.

“I guess it’s bed time then, huh?” She asks, and I solemnly nod in response.

Shiina leans down and gives me one more quick hug before opening my bedroom door; standing in the frame like that, with her long hair behind her, she really looks like a defiant princess.

“I’m so happy I have a friend like you, Emi,” she whispers, a big and cheesy grin on her face.

“Me too, I’m very lucky,” I reply, and with that she disappears into the hallway.

Unfortunately, I’ve forgotten to ask her to pass me my prosthetics that now taunt me from across the room.

I’m truly the luckiest girl in the world, right?

***

Even though I’m inside now, I can’t stop shivering. The cold has kind of snuck up on me, but it does that every year. I think it’s the early morning training that keeps me from noticing the changing seasons, but then WHAM! There’s ice on the pathways! It happens gradually, and then all at once.

I lift my elbow up and examine the scrape from this morning. You’d think that a School like Yamaku would invest in someone to salt the ground or something like that. Wait, is it actually salt they use to get rid of ice? Would it kill all the plants?

Shaking my head clear, I knock on Rin’s door. There’s no response from inside, which would have worried me when I first started helping her get ready in the morning last year.

“Wakey wakey Rin,” I announce as I enter her dorm room. It’s surprisingly clean, well, for her standards, and Rin is very clearly awake and lying on her bedroom floor. Somehow, she’s already got her trousers on.

“The sunlight was in my eyes,” she states blankly. Sure enough, her curtains are wide open, and the light has fallen almost perfectly on her bed.

“Why not shut the curtains then?” I ask, and I can already feel myself smiling.

“I didn’t want to get up.”

“But you rolled onto the floor.” I rebuttal, and Rin cranes her head forward to look at me. She isn’t wearing anything except her trousers, so she looks a bit weird from that angle.

“Which would be getting down.”

I laugh. I don’t really know how someone can be as funny as Rin without realising it.

“Okay,” I manage between laughs, “Let’s get you dressed for School today.”

I make my way behind her and stick my hands under her arms to hoist her up. She’s not very heavy, and I’m pretty much an iron-woman, so she stands up easily. We get her bra on, and I throw her shirt over her shoulders.

“Thanks,” she says.

“I’m not done yet,” I giggle, before pulling her shirt together. Halfway through, she gets distracted by a butterfly or something, and stares out of the window, so I shuffle around her to get the last buttons.

“You had a friend over again last night,” Rin states as I let go of her shirt. She looks at me like I’m not understanding her, “the cute one with the pretty hair.”

I uh.

Rin can be oddly perceptive.

“Yes, well we’re friends Rin, friends sometimes hang out with each other in their rooms,” I pat her head, which is a bit of reach.

“Don’t do that,” she says, but doesn’t move an inch. “That’s not the same. You’re different with her than with me.”

I shrug, and withdraw my hand. It’s a bit early for this kind of conversation, not that I know where it’s going.

“Anyway, I should – “

“You should ask her out,” Rin states blankly. Like it’s a normal thing to say. Like it’s not totally mental.

I…

I’m not…

“I…”

For the first time since I’ve met Rin, I’m left speechless.

I need to get out of here, why are my cheeks so goddamn hot.

“I’m not a…” I quieten my voice, but I don’t really know why, “I’m not a lesbian Rin.”

She raises an eyebrow.

“Not th-that there’s anything wrong with being, uh, you know…”

“What?” Rin looks at me like I’m the one who brought this conversation up.

“Nothing Rin,” I reach to pat her head again, but she gives me a disapproving stare so I withdraw my hand. “I’m going to shower now, so see you at lunch okay?”

“Okay,” she mutters to herself before moving over to her window again.

I exit and lean against the wall. I just need a few seconds to catch my breath.

At least I’m not cold anymore.

I cross the hallway and enter my own room, before grabbing my towel and shower caddy and heading towards the showers. There are two showers on our floor, and four rooms, but besides Rin, I rarely see the other girls, so as usual, it’s empty when I arrive. I lower myself into the shower chair and remove my prosthetics before turning on the water. It takes a few moments to heat up, but the jet of cold water is refreshing after that conversation. My elbow quickly begins to sting as I soap up.

Why did Rin have to go put that thought in my head. I’m not gay, I haven’t been thinking about Shiina like… like…

It doesn’t matter! I don’t want to sleep with her, so that means I’m not gay! So that’s that!

I drop my head into my hands and let the water run over me.

I’m not so stupid as to think that sex is the only indication that you’re attracted to someone. Besides, it’s not like I’m…

What am I thinking?

Besides, I like the captain… He’s uh…

Oh God Rin. Why.

Why?

***

“Hi,” Shiina asks, stood in my doorway and looking a little nervous.

“Hey, what’s on the menu today then?” I ask, before moving out of her way and letting her into the room fully.

She holds up two DVDs, but I don’t recognise either of them. The age rating is drastically different between them, and she looks pretty proud of herself as she passes me.

“This is all I could find; did you know the Student Council has a bunch of old DVDs’ just sitting in the cupboard?” Shiina’s wonder at that fact is pretty cute, but it doesn’t really surprise me. I’m pretty sure that the Student Council was a glorified movie club last year, rather than an actual council.

We get comfortable, propping some pillows against my wall and sitting back onto the bed. After a bit of persuading, Shiina agrees to watch the older rated film, which looks like a low-budget horror flick, and after it’s put on, we settle into the usual chattering. I barely even notice the film start as she recalls her day, and the apparent labours that the Christmas Market preparation requires.

“You know, I’m sure Rin and I could help out a little, if you wanted?” I ask, just as a grotesque monster appears on the screen. Shiina hasn’t noticed it though, and she rubs her chin in thought.

“I’ll think about it, Shizune can be a bit… controlling,” she answers, but from her tone, I think there’s more to it than that. “Besides, you – WAH!”

She practically jumps onto me when she turns to face the screen, and I burst out laughing. I can smell her shampoo at this distance, but she doesn’t seem to realise how close she actually is. She certainly makes no effort to move.

“I didn’t know it was a horror film!” She exclaims, quite loudly, and again I’m sent laughing. She shifts upright, but doesn’t adjust the distance between us, so we’re practically touching shoulders.

“You don’t pay much attention, do you?” I joke, and prod her in the side. She pouts, and crosses her arms across her chest.

“I do too!” She rebuts, but her defiant look immediately crumbles into a frown. “Okay, maybe I’m a little bit spacy, but I try!” Once again, she’s looking at me instead of the film, which is probably a good thing, since the monster is back.

I poke her again, and jostles closer to me. She’s really comfortable to lean on, actually. I could get more comfortable though.

“Hey, do you mind if I take my legs off?” I ask, and Misha just gives me a smile. The first time I asked her that, she got all awkward and didn’t know where to look. It was cute.

I sit up and begin undoing the various mechanisms that keep my legs attached. Shiina’s watching the film again, but now she’s got a pillow held over her face so only her eyes are peaking out above it.

When I’m done, I shuffle back up to where I was and Shiina doesn’t make any effort to move back to her original position, which means we’re still kind of leaning on each other.

“Did you go running today?” she asks, but she’s still watching the film with nervous anticipation.

“Have I ever missed a day?” I reply and stick my tongue out, not that she sees it.

“I find it so impressive you know,” she says a little quietly, or maybe that’s just the pillow muffling her voice, I’m not sure.

“What?”

“How dedicated you are to running,” she explains, this time facing me but still holding the pillow over her mouth.

I can feel the crimson in my cheeks, and now I’m the one looking away.

“Well…” I begin, but nothing else really comes out. I swallow hard, and breathe in deep. “I just love running is all, and you should dedicate yourself to the things you love!” I explain, but Shiina seems to notice how forced it is.

She looks at me for a few moments, as though I’ll cave and explain the real reason I run, or at least, the reason I take it so seriously.

I won’t.

“I wish I could be that dedicated to, well, anything,” she whispers.

“Hey, I’ve seen you sign, you’re dedicated to that!”

“No that’s not really… me…” she explains, but her sudden frown tells me to drop it.

“Why don’t you join me on the track?” I ask, but she immediately giggles now.

“I’m not exactly built for running, Emi.”

That kind of attitude frustrates me a bit, so I point down to my knees. A guilty look comes over Shiina. She starts to play with her long brown hair, twirling it round and round her finger like a child being told off.

“It’s okay if you don’t enjoy it, but don’t give me excuses,” I say, perhaps a bit too firmly. “I’m sorry,” I say.

“No, I’m sorry,” she mutters back, and I faintly feel her arm brush with mine.

The monster appears on screen again, and Shiina visibly tenses up.

I swallow hard again. I take a deep breath.

I slide my hand down Shiina’s arm until our fingers brush against one another. After a few playful brushes, our fingers entwine. Shiina relaxes from before, just as the monster savagely hurls one of the main characters across the room. She’s breathing quite loudly. Shit, I think I am too.

Occasionally, her fingers dance against mine, but she keeps her attention firmly on the film. The explosions and gunfire seem to keep her attention and ohmygod I’m staring at her.

I don’t think my cheeks have ever been this warm before. I’ve held hands with people before, like Mom, like… like Dad. I’ve even had a boyfriend before, even if we never kissed, we did at least hold hands. It didn’t feel like this though, it didn’t feel so… weird. Not bad weird, more like, like a rollercoaster kind of weird.

I need to calm down. We’re just friends. Sometimes, friends hold hands. It’s not that weird. It certainly doesn’t mean anything.

The film continues to play, though tonally it’s changed quite dramatically. There’s a lot of action, and even a romance element between the main characters. The dainty little girl is rescued by the jock type character, because of course she is, and the monster is driven into icy water where it freezes and sinks to the bottom of the ocean. The main characters kiss whilst explosions go off behind them and the army fly over with big helicopters.

What a crappy film.

Shiina seems to have enjoyed it however, as her eyes are still wide and she’s biting the nails on her free hand as the credits begin to roll. I didn’t think she was that invested, but I guess I was wrong.

“That romance plot came out of nowhere!” I say, and she turns to face me finally, an awkward grin on her face, but her hand still holding mine.

“I liked it,” she answers, “have you ever had a boyfriend?”

I swallow again. I wonder if she’s been thinking about the same stuff I have been. Her face doesn’t really betray anything.

“Yeah, once, but it didn’t really go anywhere.”

There’s a couple of moments of silence. Her thumb brushes over my nail.

“Have you?” I ask.

There another moment of silence, and this time my fingers squeeze her hand.

“No, I haven’t.”

Shiina stares out the window again, out into the dark, where the lights of the little town below Yamaku glisten and flicker in and out like lightening bugs.

“Do you want one?” I ask, but she doesn’t look back.

“I don’t know,” she exhales, “I just don’t really get why we have to make such a big deal about it. Like, I guess I just see… people. Not guys, not girls, just… people.”

I can’t say I’ve thought about this kind of thing too deeply. Well, I have, but only over the last few days. I guess I’ve never really had to; I’ve never met anyone I really considered, uh, attractive, I guess. I mean, there were some guys at my old school who, I think I was attracted too, but they weren’t anything special either. They were just… handsome, I guess, but that was it. Shouldn’t there be something more? Some feeling from inside?

“I think I understand,” I eventually say, but she isn’t looking at me. “I think I just want to find the one, whoever that is.”

Shiina exhales and leans back into me a bit. It’s gotten quite dark, and the light from the DVD player is pretty much the only thing keeping me vertical. Shiina seems to feel the same way, since she yawns loudly.

“Have you ever been in love?” She asks, and I immediately shake my head.

“Have you?”

Shiina drops her head onto my shoulder, but keeps her eyes fixed on the window.

“I think I might be, yeah.”

My cheeks heat up.

Does she mean…

I swallow hard, twice, and try to calm myself down.

“I’m just so lucky to have a friend like you, Emi,” she says quietly, her hand still locked with mine.

Friends… yeah. Friends.

The credits fade to black, and the light from the DVD player fades too.

Shiina is really comfortable.

Friends, I think to myself.

I think about my ex. I think about Rin. I think about tomorrow.

Then I stop thinking altogether.

***
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Last edited by Feurox on Tue Dec 24, 2019 7:09 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Feurox
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'Writing on the Wall' - SX for Cpl_Crud 2

Post by Feurox » Tue Dec 24, 2019 6:44 am

Writing on the Wall 2

***
It snowed last night. Of course, it had to snow.

I feel totally restless. Since the track is pretty much unusable, I’m just sitting in bed staring at the ceiling. I keep kicking my knees under the duvet, maybe in some hope that I’ll tire myself out enough. Being awake this early and having nothing to do is honestly awful. It’s like that feeling when Mom calls you down for dinner and it isn’t ready, only worse, because Mom’s not even there and instead it’s a just a load of homework sitting on a table and you have to do it even though you’re hungry.

Urgh.

This sucks.

This sucks so much.

It’s really cold too. I hate it.

I miss the warmth of Shiina.

I slam my head into the pillow.

We haven’t talked about that yet. Even though it was a bit awkward when we woke up together a few days ago. She said she was busy with Student Council stuff, which I don’t really doubt, but… still. I feel like I’m all over the place. Can you have a restless head?

After slamming my head into my pillow a few more times, and regretting the last slam, I roll to the side of my bed and begin attaching my prosthetics. If I’m going to be up this early, I might as well get a good breakfast.

It doesn’t take me long to get ready for school, especially since I never unpack my bag, and I search through my wardrobe for a warmer coat. I only have Mom’s old puffer jacket, which is way too big for me. Still, I don’t fare well in cold weather, so beggars can’t be choosers.

Even the hallway is freezing as I exit my room. I knock on Rin’s door, and as usual, there’s no answer. I feel a bit guilty waking her up this early, but I don’t want to come back to get her, so I twist the key into the door and enter. Surprisingly, she’s already awake, and is currently painting something on her easel.

“Good morning Rin.”

“Hello.”

Even more surprising, she’s mostly dressed, aside from the buttons on her shirt. I wander if she stayed up all night.

“Do you want me to do your buttons up?” I ask, and she looks down at her chest, probably because she didn’t even know her shirt was open. Or on.

“Yes please.”

I walk over and begin buttoning her up. She sits up straight, and looks over my shoulder at her painting.

“It needs more red. And yellow,” she says.

I do her middle button. “What is it?”

“I don’t know yet,” she answers.

I figured as much.

“Have you spoken to that girl yet?” She asks. “The pretty one.” She clarifies.

“No Rin.”

“Are you going too?”

“Yes, Rin,” I answer, and finish her top button.

“Good,” she says. “Good.”

“Make sure you go to class today, okay?”

“I will,” Rin answers.

“See you at lunch,”

Rin looks me up and down and smiles.

“Yes.”

With that, I exit into the hallway again. I head down the stairs, where a group of third year girls are sitting and chatting quietly. One of them gives me a polite nod as I zip up my jacket and head out into the cold.

As much as I hate the cold and snow, I can’t deny that it’s pretty. Everything is covered in this white blanket, and it all looks so… clean, I guess. Like someone has thrown a white sheet over everything, like everything is new. The flowers poke their heads out from beneath their snowy crowns, and the trees shiver powdered snow in winter sneezes. It’s quite magical, it’s just a shame it’s interrupted my running.

The occasional burst of wind makes it extra cold, so I snuggle into the fur hood of my jacket. Well, Mom’s jacket, I guess. Winter has this kind of ‘crisp’ smell that somehow makes you feel colder, but I don’t think a smell can be cold.

Maybe someone in Yamaku has psychic abilities, because the pathways have been salted and cleared of all snow. There’s probably some reason they can’t do it for the track, but I make a mental note to ask Nurse about it later. At least I’m not going to fall over like I did at the beginning of the week. Well, fingers crossed anyway.

I take the stairs carefully, even if they’ve been cleared of snow, I’m more likely than the common person to slip. Thankfully, the double-doors of the main building aren’t far, and I enter the lovely warmth of school. This is one of those rare days where I’m actually glad to make it in early. Or to make it to school at all.

I follow the corridor down to the cafeteria, which is mostly empty save for a few small groups. I only recognise one person, Miura, a fellow track-team member. She’s sitting alone, playing with her breakfast.

After collecting a few things to eat, admittedly more than a few things today, I make my way over to Miki’s table and sit opposite her. She looks up from her plate and smirks.

“Snow?”

“Snow,” I confirm and she laughs. “Not hungry?”

“Nah,” she stabs a potato, “I’m feeling a bit ill actually.”

I take a bite out of my own food, and Miki starts tapping on the table absentmindedly. We’re not really friends, but it’s nice to be able to talk to someone that isn’t Rin in the morning. Or Shiina, I guess. I feel my cheeks heat up again.

“I guess practise is off for a while then,” Miki states, she looks pretty bored.

“I don’t know, the Captain might make us do indoor training or something,” I reply, and a devious grin comes over Miki’s face.

“Speaking of Captain, are you still…” she begins.

“Miki!” I hiss, but that only makes her laugh.

“Okay, okay. Well, I’ve got some disappointing news for you then,” she whispers, and I lean in close over my tray. “Apparently the Captain has a… masculine, persuasion.”

Uh. What?

“What?” I ask, and Miki tuts and puts her hand beside her face to whisper.

“He’s gay, Emi.”

Oh.

OH.

“I… see,” I finally say, before taking another bite of my breakfast. It tastes a bit metallic.

“Sorry to disappoint you,” she jokes.

I don’t really feel disappointed though, I guess I haven’t been thinking about the captain like that lately… I guess…

“Sorry,” Miki repeats but she actually looks a bit concerned.

“Huh?”

“You looked really down for a minute there,” she explains, “I figured you really liked him.”

“Not really,” I say, “I hadn’t thought about him, like that, in a while actually.”

“Oh?” She asks. There’s a reason everyone calls Miki a gossip.

I stick my tongue out at her.

“Yes really, and no, there’s no one else.”

“You sure?” she teases, and flicks at my cheek.

“Yes Miki, I’m sure.” I reply with a giggle. Miki looks more intimidating then she really is.

“Well, if someone does take your interest, you can always tell big sis Miki,” she winks at me, and I burst out laughing.

“Big sis Miki?” I ask, and she shrugs.

“Just showing our little track-star some love,” she explains.

I focus on my breakfast for a bit, and Miki seems happy to just talk to herself about various bits of gossip. We chat a little, and I’m quite surprised just how many people at our school are apparently gay. There’s the captain, then apparently two girls in Miki’s class. She thinks that ‘the shy girl’ in her class might be too, but I don’t really know who she’s talking about.

It’s weird how casually Miki can talk about stuff like this. I thought being gay was a bit of a taboo, I think, If I was, which, I uh, I’m not, I think, uh…

Anyway, I think that if I was, I’d struggle to tell anyone. Not having legs is hard enough, but being gay as well… I think there’s only so different you can be… right?

Of course not. That’s a stupid way to think. People are just people, and uh… yeah.

“Oi, airhead,” Miki snaps her fingers in front of my face. I suppose she can’t exactly clap. “I’m going to class; you should get going soon short-fry.”

“Thanks,” I smile, and she gets up to leave for class.

I stab at my food one last time. I really over-did it today.

I drag my hands over my eyes.

***

“Hey,” Shiina whispers through the crack in my door.

“Who is it,” I joke and open the door fully.

“Me silly!” she crosses her arms over her chest in mock indignation.

“Just checking,” I say as I move aside to let her in. it’s been a few days since we last hung out, so it genuinely feels really good to see her again.

“I don’t have any films with me,” she admits with a pout.

“That’s okay, I have a few.”

She takes her shoes off and climbs onto my bed, and I fiddle with my DVD player. After opening my drawer and looking through my DVD collection, I pull out a fairly bland looking cartoon film and Shiina nods in approval. She yawns loudly, so I doubt she’s going to stick with it for long anyway.

It’s been snowing for the last few days on and off, so it’s really started to build up outside. Shiina seems to find it magical, and she’s staring out the window with the amazement of a child. It’s quite adorable really, and she doesn’t pay me any attention as the DVD kicks into gear. Her long brown hair is splayed out behind her on the bed. I can’t stop thinking about how princess-like she is.

The film breaks out into a musical number, and she finally turns around to see it. She smiles and snuggles in close to me, where her fingers find mine, it feels… natural. It’s wordless, though I don’t know how someone would describe something like this anyway. Friends with…benefits? No, that sounds like we’re having sex… we’re just, physical friends?

Urgh. My head hurts.

“Are we still doing the Christmas festival together this weekend?” I ask, and Shiina excitedly nods.

“Of course! But I’m working until seven-thirty. Shizune and Lilly said I can leave earlier than them!” She seems to dance between a few moods as she speaks, guilt, excitement, nerves… Shiina is really quite transparent.

“Well, I can’t wait.”

She squeezes my hand firmly and I nestle into her shoulder. The princess of the film jumps onto a horse, and Shiina giggles. I separate myself from her and slip my prosthetics off; she doesn’t even blink.

It’s weird to feel so normal with her, with so much… strangeness. We’re not together, but we’re holding hands.

We’re two girls. Two people. Two half-people, I guess. But, right now with Shiina, I don’t feel like Emi Ibarazaki – legless wonder… I just, I just feel like Emi.

Just Emi.

Emi and Shiina.

“Hey,” I whisper into her neck.

“Hi,” she whispers back, and her face twists down to meet me.

“Thank you,” I say quietly and her face gets just a tiny bit closer to mine.

“For what?” She asks, and I squeeze her hand.

“For this,” I answer and her fingers circle around mine.

Are we…?

“I…” She begins, but our faces come a little closer again. Her breath feels warm and she smells like strawberries. Just behind her, I notice it’s snowing again.

“I…”

Our lips touch softly. I feel my heart smack into my chest. Her hands continue to dance around mine.

We withdraw, and I reach around the back of her head. She doesn’t resist, and pulls closer again as our lips once again meet. Her warmth spreads through me, like lighting veins stretching out through my cheeks, and sending shockwaves through my brain.

I don’t know if I’ve ever felt this good before. I want more.

She pulls away briefly, and the feeling of her absence makes my heart sink again. She squeezes my hand, before touching her lips on my cheek, then the top of my neck below my ear. I feel so hot right now, like I could explode. She shuffles over, and her hand finds my side, on top of my hip. Both of her hands squeeze me, and I trail my fingers through her hair and down her back.

Shiina purrs with satisfaction as my fingers drag down her back, and she kisses my neck harder, faster. I feel my stomach lurch forward and my heart beat like I’ve just finished the hundred metre sprint. This feeling it’s… incredible, but I also feel so sick. She pulls back from my neck, and looks me in the eye. When our lips meet again, something has changed… our kiss feels, hungry?

I want more of her.

I fiddle with the bow of her blouse, and she grabs me by both hips, pulling me closer and kissing me harder and with more intensity. I feel like I can’t breathe, I don’t want to think anymore. I just want her.

Our tongues gently brush at each other, like they’re teasing for the other to come out. I enter her mouth carefully and encounter her tongue with a dance.

After a few teeth clashes, and some awkward giggles, I finish undoing her blouse and unbutton her. Slowly at first, but by the time I reach her bottom button, we practically fling her top off of her. I don’t get much time to admire her bra, which seems to struggle impossibly against her chest, before her hands slide beneath me and begin to squeeze my butt. Without my legs, I’m quite light, and she lifts me towards her, kissing me feverishly.

“W-Window,” I manage between our kisses, and we break apart for a moment to shut the curtains. Shiina gets up, her long hair wrapping around her like a shawl, and dressing her like some kind of goddess. Her whole-body glistens against the snow and moon, but she draws the curtains and the dark takes over.

When she returns to me, the intensity from before has somewhat passed, and she reaches for my hips again. Her lips are practically touching my ear.

“Is this okay?” she whispers, a quiver in her voice.

“I…” is it? I don’t know. I don’t know.

“I don’t know,” I whisper back. I reach up and cup her face with my hands and bring her lips to mine again. “I don’t want to stop.”

“Me… either,” she manages between our kisses. She lifts me onto her lap and I instinctively wrap my arms around her back, she’s really soft. My own shirt falls to the floor beside us, and uh, I’m not wearing a bra.

I can feel the heat in my cheeks, but Shiina just looks me up and down with this… stare. She smiles timidly, and then I’m overtaken by a sensation like nothing I’ve ever felt, as her lips touch my breast. She takes her time with each nipple, circling them around her tongue softly, and kissing the distance between them gently. My breathing has gotten really heavy, but… but…. but I just don’t care. I hold her head against my chest and rock back and forth in her lap.

My hands claw at her hair gently, and I let my fingers slide down her neck. How is she so good at this?

“Shiina,” I breathe, but she doesn’t slow down, and her hand slides from my butt to the front of my skirt, where her fingers begin to very gently squeeze my thigh. Occasionally, she brushes her finger up, sending shockwaves all over. I think I’m pretty wet, but she clearly doesn’t care.

“Shiina, I, I want…” I exhale deeply again, and her own breathing seems so loud. My ears are ringing, my heart is pounding. This is incredible… this is…

This is…

This is too fast.

I can’t process anything.

I instinctively grab her wrist, and she stops, before looking up from my chest.

“I… want you,” I begin, and she smiles deviously. “But, can we… slow down?”

She’s clearly a bit dejected, but her hand withdraws and wraps around my waist again.

“Were you… enjoying it?” She asks, and I laugh as I collapse into her.

“So, so much.” I whisper, and plant a kiss on her cheek.

“I just don’t want to rush anything,” I admit, and together we fall back onto my bed. We’re both still shirtless, and I can’t deny that I’m craving her touch again, but this feels right. Lying, well, on top of her, feels right.

“Am I crushing you?”

“No, you’re light,” Shiina giggles, and reaches behind me for the duvet. The DVD is still playing in the corner, but neither of us care. Her hand begins twirling circles along my back. It’s a really, really nice feeling.

“Can I stay?” Shiina eventually asks, and I practically nod into her breasts.

“Please,” I manage, and her hands finds my hair.

The sick feeling from earlier has gone now. I want to say that this has been unexpected, but I don’t think it has. I just… I don’t want to think about anything but this feeling right now.

Shiina seems to agree, as her breathing slowly evens out to a slow rise and fall. I roll off of her chest and snuggle beside her, and our hands interlock again.

I think about Shiina’s lips. I think about tomorrow. I think about the Christmas Market.

I think about Dad. I think about Shiina’s fingers in mine. I think about sexuality.

I think about what it means to be me.

And then I stop thinking all together.

***

Miki gives me a concerned look as I stab another bit of potato.

“Angry today Emi?” She teases, and sticks her tongue out at me.

I drop my head into my hands. I could scream right now.

“Woah, what’s going on?” She asks, this time seriously.

“It’s… nothing,” I manage, but I’m not fooling anyone. Miki gives me a serious scowl, and crosses her arms across her chest.

“Something happened…” I explain through gritted teeth.

“With a guy?” she asks curiously, before leaning in. “Do I have to kill anyone?” she whispers, and even in my current confused state, I can’t help but giggle a little.

“No,” I answer her and bat away her waggling finger.

“With a girl?” she asks, but she doesn’t seem to be teasing me.

Does she know?

How does she know?

“I…”

“Holy shit,” she exclaims and leans backwards. She looks around a few times, before coming back in and winking. “Secret’s safe with me.”

I drop my head into my arms. To my surprise, Miki hasn’t started teasing me yet. I look up, and she’s actually looking quite thoughtful.

“Okay, look,” she begins, and her hand reaches out and grabs mine. Is she uh, is she also uh…

“Listen,” she starts, “I don’t know what it’s like, with a girl that is, but remember that we’re just people right? Your problem is that you always over-think everything. If you’d just been upfront with Captain ages ago, you could have moved on a lot sooner.” She sticks her tongue out at the end there, but it’s in good spirit.

“I guess what I’m saying is just relax, whatever happens, happens.”

That’s very Miki advice, but it’s pretty sweet of her to care. Despite her reputation as the school gossip, I feel like I can trust her with this, so I squeeze her hand and she withdraws with a smile.

“Thanks Miki,” I mutter, and she swipes a potato from my plate. “Hey!”

“Friendship Tax,” she claims with a mouth filled with my food. “Oh, and apparently we’re doing the bleep test tonight in the gym.” She pretends to shoot herself in the head and again, I giggle.

“It won’t be that bad, besides, it’s been too long since I got the chance to run.”

“Well on that we can agree,” she laughs.

I really don’t know what to think about last night. When I woke up this morning, wrapped in Shiina’s arms, I thought things would be really awkward. They weren’t, and we continued to cuddle until we had to both get ready for school. Are we like, together now? Or can friends just… do that? I mean, I know that they can, but… I didn’t think I was. Uh. Gay.

Am I? I mean, Shiina makes me feel… something. But I know I wanted the captain too.

Is Gaydar real?

I shake my head, just as Miki steals another bite of my food. Whatever, I’m not that hungry anyway.

“Seriously, Emi what’s going on? Normally you’d chase me across the room for something like that.”

I shrug. “It’s nothing.”

“Nothing, or you don’t wanna talk about it.”

I half-heartedly take a bite of my food.

“I guess both.”

Miki shrugs.

“Well, whatever it is, stop being miserable.”

Maybe she’s right. Maybe I’m overthinking this whole thing.

I’m having fun with Shiina. Maybe I should be more like Miki and just go with the flow.



I can’t believe I just thought that.

She’s right though. Maybe, if I just let things progress naturally, I’ll find out what this all means. If it means anything at all, I guess. Right now, I’m happy. I really am, despite my worries. Shiina is so wonderful and last night was… fun. It was fun, yeah.

“Okay,” I say and Miki perks up.

“Ey?”

“I’ll cheer up,” I tell her.

“Oh, good.” She takes another swipe at my food but I catch her hand. “Good,” she repeats. “Besides, beating you in today’s training wouldn’t be fun if you were distracted.”

“Fat chance,” I reply and stick my tongue out at her.

“Come on, hurry up and eat. Watching you is making me hungry.”

“Go get some food then.”

“Don’t try and trick me into gaining extra weight Ibarazaki,” she laughs.

“Am I that obvious?” I ask, and she prods me.

“Master of secrets, you are not.” She says in a funny accent.

“Was that… Yoda?” I ask.

Miki looks all around us, and leans close again.

“I’ll hurt you.”

I giggle. There’s so much I should be thankful for, instead of worrying about everything.

I’m going to be a little bit more like Miki. Even if it kills me.

“Nerd, you are.” I reply.

Miki smack her head against the table.

***

“I guess I don’t think about it much,” Shinna answers, her hands firmly on my hips. “I don’t think about much at all though.”

“That’s not true,” I reassure her, and give her a light kiss on the cheek. She’s considerably taller than me, but that just means I have to drape my arms around her neck.

“You’re too kind to me Emi, wahahaha ~”

“What the hell was that?” I ask with a giggle. She immediately pouts.

“It’s my laugh,” she sulks.

“No, it isn’t!” I can’t help but burst out laughing. This whole scenario is ridiculous.

“It’s new!”

“What was wrong with the old one?” Her hands find my hips again and well fall onto the bed, with her body propped over above mine.

“I had an ugly laugh, wahahaha ~” With that last horrifyingly loud laugh, her lips find my neck and further conversation becomes the last thing on my mind. I should probably reassure her, but right now I have something else on my mind.

My arms slide under her blouse and across the small of her back whilst her lips continue down my neck and to my collar. Every time her lips touch my skin, I feel electricity flow through me. My nails gently scratch down her back, and she breathes into my ear. With every touch, I wrap my arms and legs around her.

One of her hands slowly drags from my hip, to the outside of my thigh, and then over to the inside. I instinctively contort and squeeze her butt which causes her to push against me. I feel a bit calmer than last time, at least, mentally, and I’m able to process the feeling of her fingers as they begin to tease me over my underwear.

I drag my nails back up to her bra and undo the strap, before sliding my finger out from beneath her blouse and fiddling with her buttons. She keeps rubbing small circles over the fabric of my underwear, before reaching for my skirt and pulling it off. With her blouse off, and my skirt on the floor, we’re one fully clothed set. I’d laugh if I didn’t want her so desperately. She stops for a minute and makes light work of my own blouse.

She lowers herself again, and runs her tongue along my ear as her fingers continue to work. It’s quite hard to think straight, but my hands find her breasts, which are considerably larger than mine, and I begin to knead them gently, running my fingers across her nipples slowly. I kiss down the front of her neck, and suck lightly on her collar. Our breathing is beginning to match, as I deliberately run my tongue over her nipple and my hands caress her sides.

“Shiina,” I whimper as her fingers slide beneath the fabric of my underwear, and she smiles, pleased with herself. Still, I don’t want to beaten, so I unclip her skirt so we’re both in our underwear, and pull one of my hands to her front as I continue to kiss her chest. I copy the motion she’s making with her fingers, and we seem to fall into rhythm of rubbing, kissing and moaning softly.

This feels amazing, but I’m not sure it will drive me wild at this speed. So, I begin to speed up and press just a little harder; thankfully, she copies the motion and our breathing speeds up as my hips begin to rock on their own. I could get really, really used to this feeling.

After a few minutes, Shiina begins to kiss down my chest and her bottom half escapes my reach. Her hands find my own and our fingers interlock as her lips touch every part of my chest. She drags her tongue down the centre of my stomach, and begins to kiss the inside of my thigh. It’s a bit ticklish at first, but when she pulls my underwear to the side and takes a long but gentle lick, my heart slams into the ceiling. The feeling is otherworldly.

I can’t really think straight as she begins to speed up, and I instinctively squeeze her hands hard. As she reaches a new speed, my hips begin to rock in time with her licks, and everything feels so, so hot. I’m probably making a lot of noise, but I also don’t care.

Eventually, I manage to wiggle my hand free, and I begin to run it through her hair. I have to stop her a few times as the feeling becomes too intense, but she quickly regains her concentration and my head is sent back into the pillow as I practically shake with the sensation of her tongue. Her now free hand explores my chest, taking my breasts in her hand and squeezing them. How is she so good at this?

She gets a little toothy a few times, and we giggle awkwardly before she resumes. My hands squeeze her too hard, and we end up apologising a lot, but after what feels like both an eternity and no time at all, my mind begins to go white as I reach my limit. Both of my hands find her head, but if anything, it emboldens her to continue and shockwaves echo through me again and again as I rock.

Despite finishing, Shiina doesn’t seem content to stop, and continues licking. I can hear my heartbeat, and even though I half-heartedly try to push her face away, I end up climaxing again and this time it’s even more intense. I didn’t even know I could do it twice in a row like that, and my heavy breathing slows as she climbs up my body to kiss me.

That, was incredible.

Shiina squeals as I wrap my knees around her waist and throw her onto her back.

“My turn,” I whisper into her ear.

Outside, it snows again, but that’s okay.

I’m not going anywhere.

***
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Last edited by Feurox on Tue Dec 24, 2019 7:06 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Feurox
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'Writing on the Wall' - SX for Cpl_Crud 3

Post by Feurox » Tue Dec 24, 2019 6:50 am

Writing on the Wall

***

“Why are we outside?” Rin asks. Despite my efforts to make her feel Christmassy, and the cute reindeer jumper I put her in, she remains as deadpan as ever.

“We’re going to take a look at the festival, aren’t you looking forward to it?”

“I’m more cold than anything,” she states.

She’s got a point. It is really cold. Still, I can’t pretend I’m not a bit excited. Shiina is busy for the next hour, so I thought I could take Rin around the stalls for a bit, before she inevitably gets bored and goes back to her room.

“Well, why don’t we get some hot food and warm up?” I ask, and Rin thinks for a moment.

“Okay.”

With that, we start waddling towards the noise and lights of the market. I’m surprised by how lively it is, but I guess the locals surrounding Yamaku haven’t got much else to do. If all of these stalls and decorations are the product of Shizune and Shiina then I think I should take her Student Council work more seriously. It’s really, really beautiful.

Fairy lights sway in the air, hanging between stalls on either side of the path. There are various food stalls, market stalls, and games, that have been set up over the last few days and stretch as far as the eye can see. Then there’s this strange smell in the air, like pine and spicy food is mixing, and the occasional flurry of snow causes the lights to stand out like stars shimmering in the night. Some of the stalls are manned by students, but all the market ones are from local stores or farms. I don’t want to imagine how much planning this took.

The sight makes me smile, but Rin presses on in the direction of food and so I’m forced to follow her. She’s like a bloodhound sometimes, I swear.

In the centre of the path, actually, a little in the way, is a large Christmas tree that’s had tinsel draped around it several times. Rin completely ignores it, but many of my classmates and people I recognise as students are taking photos with their friends and families. It’s quite pretty, if a bit obnoxious, and the little star at it’s tip shines relentlessly. A group of first year girls pass us with hot-chocolate drinks that smell way too good.

“Here,” Rin states, having now parked herself in front of a Christmassy food stand. It’s like… fried chicken, I think. Still, it smells quite nice, and I’m not that fussy when it comes to food.

“I take it I’m paying?” I ask, but I already know the answer.

“It was your idea,” she replies.

I fiddle with my mittens and end pulling the first one off with my teeth. It’s still snowing, so I don’t want to keep my hands exposed for too long. Luckily there’s no queue, so I open up my purse and pay for two chicken and rice wrap thingies, and carry them over with us to the nearby bench. They feel really hot in my hands which is a welcome feeling in this cold. Rin doesn’t mind me feeding her as I eat, and we sit in a kind of peaceful silence as the sounds of laughter rings around the tree.

I wonder what stand Shiina is working. I hope she’s having fun.

“What do people even do for Christmas?” Rin asks me, and I feed her another bite of her meal.

“I’mha –“, I swallow, “It’s a Western holiday really.” She tilts her head quizzically, “I think it’s become a sort of romantic holiday here,” I explain, and take another bite.

“Oh,” she thinks for a moment, before looking me dead in the eyes. “Are you seeing that girl tonight?”

I…

“Yes,” I answer. But I’ve been meaning to ask Rin a question for some time. “Rin?”

“Hm?”

Okay. Here goes.

“I really like her. Romantically, I think,” I explain and even saying it sends my cheeks burning. Thankfully, everyone around us is far too busy having fun to be eavesdropping.

“I know.”

“And…?”

“And what?” she asks.

“What do you think?”

Rin sits back against the bench. She closes her eyes for a few moments, and when she opens them again, she actually looks happy. Like she’s just figured something out.

“You’re more you when you talk about her,” she finally answers.

I’m more… me?

I know better than to ask Rin to explain herself, but still. ‘More me?’

“Have I not been myself lately?” I ask, and a loud burst of laughter rings out behind us as some people I recognise from the cafeteria win big at some stupid dart game.

Rin shrugs, and I feed her again.

“You keep being happy, and then you think too much, and you get sad.”

Huh. Despite constantly showing me her perceptive side, I’m still surprised by just how clearly Rin can see people for who they are. Maybe it’s her artistic streak shining through, but even when she sees me for who I really am, I don’t feel vulnerable.

“I love you Rin,” I manage, but I can feel my eyes stinging. It’s the cold. Yeah. The cold.

She looks at me confused for a moment, but shrugs again.

“Okay.”

That’s probably as good as I’m going to get, so I wrap my arm around her shoulder and squeeze her. She’s actually super warm. Lucky.

With our meals finished, we get up from the bench and drop our rubbish in the bin beside us. The swathes of people moving between stalls feels like navigating a stream, and for a minute I worry that my prosthetics might get taken out by some over eager child running. Thankfully, I’m lucky today, and no little kiddies rush past.

It’s gotten busier since we sat down, so much so that Rin and I have to struggle upstream to get a good look at the games and markets. Rin doesn’t have much interest in games, especially since a good deal of them are throwing games. So, we really just browse the stalls for pretty presents whilst the snow makes us colder by the moment. I can tell that Rin isn’t really feeling this. I wonder how much stuff Rin does with me, just because she thinks it’ll make me happy.

I used to think she was complex, but she’s not really. It’s just so rare to meet genuine kindness. It’s so sad to be surprised by honestly.

“Rin, I’m meeting Shiina soon, if you want to head back?”

“Is that okay?” She asks, and I give her a reassuring smile.

“It’s okay. Thank you for eating with me.”

She smiles and turns away to head back. Just before she disappears into the crowd, she turns around. “Happy Christmas Emi,” she says blankly, and then the crowd swallows her.

Lots of people at Yamaku will be going home, since Christmas break gives us a week away from classes. I doubt Rin is going anywhere, but for some reason, that makes me a little sad.

I wander aimlessly between stalls, beneath fluttering fairy lights and soft drops of snow, browsing the useless rubbish that decorates the market stalls.

“Emi!”

I follow the sound of that familiar voice, and sure enough, behind a stall selling noodles, is Shiina, Shizune and a tall Blonde girl I don’t recognise. There’s a sign above the stall that reads, ‘All proceeds go to future Student Council events’, which strikes me as a little weird, since none of the other stalls seem to be student run.

I like their outfits, but they’re not very Christmassy; they look like waiters, dressed in white, with white aprons and little red bows. I wave and head over, now extremely conscious of my Christmas tree jumper and its garish green colour. At least I have a coat on.

There are a few people ordering things, with the blonde girl taking their orders and then relaying them to Shizune via Shiina. It looks a bit… unorganised, and Shizune has a mildly irritated expression on her face. Still, Shiina seems to be enjoying herself despite the chaos.

“I’m only working for a few more minutes,” she shouts over to me as I position myself out of the way of the queue. The customers turn to look at me, before returning to the blonde girl or their conversation, the smell of noodles wafting over their heads. After signing a few things to Shizune, Shiina reaches into her bag and produces a digital camera. She waves it in the air and mocks taking a photo of me.

“Would you mind taking a photo of us?” She asks, again, over the crowds of hungry customers. Shizune scowls, but there’s a hint of a smile there. The blonde girl seems quite happy with the idea too.

“Sure,” I reply and reach over the stall to receive her camera. It’s pretty straightforward, so I take a few steps back, and thankfully the customers move over without me having to ask.

“Okay, ready?” I ask, and Shiina nods, her hands full with some pans that she tucks behind the other girls. I take a few shots, before holding the screen in front of me. They all look happy, even though Shizune has this determined expression in all of them.

Image


When I hand Shiina her camera back, Shizune begins to sign rapidly at her. Her expression changes several times, and then the blonde girl pulls Shiina aside and whispers something in her ear. It seems to have gotten quite tense all of a sudden. I rub the back of my head awkwardly, and Shiina sends me an apologetic half-smile.

“Sorry Emi, I’ll be a few more minutes.” She claims, but the blonde girl taps her on the shoulder.

“Please, Shiina, you’re more than welcome to enjoy yourself. Shizune will have to learn to be patient.”

Shiina translates that with a flurry of her hands, and Shizune scoffs at her.

“If you were not so stubborn,” Shiina says, though I presume she’s translating for Shziune, “we wouldn’t have any trouble at all. Misha should be able to enjoy herself, but instead she’s picking up your slack – hey, that’s not true.” Shiina seems really flustered, talking with both of them at once, and barely managing to get her voice heard.

Who’s Misha, anyway? Is that what Shizune calls Shiina? Why?

I make a mental note to ask her about it later.

Honestly, I’d rather not be here for whatever argument the student council are getting in to. From the long on her face, Shiina would like to escape it too, but she’s busy translating another message for the blonde girl. Luckily, the last of the customers scoops up his bowl of noodles and disappears to the benches. The whole thing is pretty unprofessional.

After several minutes of arguing, most of which I tune out from, Shiina apologises to both girls, and they give her a smile as she heads over to me. Now the girls are…holding hands? Have they made up?

When Shiina reaches me, she follows my stare to the rest of the Council.

“It’s a way for the deaf and blind to talk without an interpreter,” she explains, before taking me in her arms for a hug.

“Is everything okay?” I ask, but Shiina bites her lip.

“I don’t know, I think I’ve really screwed something up. Let’s just enjoy ourselves, okay?”

We begin to walk, two more fish in the stream of people, but there’s an oppressive air now. As we dart between the stalls, it becomes increasingly obvious that Shiina has no interest in any of the games. When we do finally play something, Shiina is awful – maybe deliberately, and we don’t win anything.

Eventually, we end up back in front of the Tree. It’s died down now, but groups of people gather around it to take photos still. Boyfriends and girlfriends hold hands or hug in front of it… it’s nice. I kind of wish I could get a photo with Shiina, but I’m not about to flaunt…whatever we are.

She still looks pretty down. I don’t really know what to do. It’s not like we can go around holding hands or anything. I’m not even sure that would help.

“Can I ask you something?”

Shiina looks up from the ground and tries to give me a smile.

“Why did Shizune call you Misha, or, you call yourself Misha, or… Sign language is confusing,” I admit and she giggles lightly.

“I asked her to call me Misha,” she explains, without explaining anything.

“Yeah, but why?” I ask, and she bits her thumb.

“Because Shiina is too similar to Shizune, and Shiina is an ugly name.”

“No it isn’t!” I insist, but she just giggles again like I’m being stupid.

We continue to wonder between stalls with this uneasy tension in the air. I’ve never seen Shiina like this, but if it’s the Council’s fault than maybe I should have gotten involved, said something or done something. The snow keeps getting heavier, and the river of people seems to be lessening by the minute. I find an unoccupied bench by the tree and I take a seat.

“Hey, do you remember the night we met?” I ask, and gesture for her to sit beside me.

“Huh?” she asks, clearly still distracted by her thoughts.

“The night we met,” I repeat, and a small smile tugs at the corners of her lips.

“Yeah, at the track,” she states. “I was stargazing.”

“Star-watching according to you,” I tease, and a hint of crimson appears in her cheeks. “I never asked you what you were actually doing.” I admit, and Shiina looks off into the distance.

“Yeah, well, I wasn’t really doing anything.”

There’s a strong wind, and the snow feels cold against my face. It makes me thankful for my mittens, that’s for sure.

“I was just so bored,” Shiina says with a sniffle. Is she cold or…?

Oh shit.

With red eyes, she turns towards me.

“You were so incredible on the track, you had this determined face,” she tries to smile, but something inside her looks like it’s breaking.

“Shiina…” I begin, but she holds a finger up for me to be quiet.

“I didn’t know what I was doing here,” she explains with another sniffle. “I still don’t but, but you help… and I keep screwing things up.”

The cold feels so much colder now; I can’t see the stars through the snow.

“I know I’m a rubbish friend, I know I’m not very smart or very pretty but –“

“What?” I interrupt her, and she leans back startled.

“I know I’m –“

“Cut it out.”

Shiina lifts her legs up to her chest and holds her arms around them.

“Look, you’re not the only one getting something out of… this,” I reach for her hand, but she just squeezes her legs to her chest tighter.

“This…” she echoes.

“You’re a good friend Shiina,” I eventually say. People are starting to looks at her.

“You’re a good friend,” I repeat and withdraw into myself alongside her.

She doesn’t say anything for a while. We just sit here as the sounds of life appear and disappear around us. Everyone is laughing, singing, eating, playing games…

We’re just sitting here.

“They’re fighting and it’s all my fault,” she eventually says.

“I don’t even know what happened but that can’t be true.”

“You don’t get it…” she whispers.

“Then tell me,” I ask, and she shakes her head. “Well I can’t help if you won’t let me.”

“You can’t help at all,” she mutters into her arms.

“Shiina, I don’t know what’s going on – but, I like you a lot. Like, really like you and I –“

Before I can go on, Shiina begins rapidly shaking her head.

“No, this is all wrong,” she barely whispers.

“What is?”

“You can’t like me.”

“Why not?”

My heart feels like it’s about to explode.

“Because… Because I can’t like you back.”

I feel so sick. Everything hurts.

I get up from the bench.

“Shiina…” I beg, but she doesn’t budge.

Something inside me drops.

“Fine,” I whisper. “Come find me if you decide to stop being difficult.” A little angrily now.

With the lights swaying above me in the wind, I re-join the stream of people back to my room. I thought tonight would be fun. I thought tonight would mean something. But that was wishful thinking.

I take my mittens off and stuff them into my coat pocket as I enter the dormitories. Luckily, there’s nobody in the common room as I pass.

With my door shut, and my lights turned off, I watch the snow fall.

It doesn’t stop.

I think about Shiina. I think about the Student Council.

My heart hurts.

I think about love. I think about Shiina again.

The snow never stops.

“Merry Christmas, Rin,” I whisper into the window. Part of me expects her to whisper something back.

She doesn’t, obviously.

Part of me expects Shiina to knock on my door.

She doesn’t.

***
If you asked me now who I am, the only answer I could give with any certainty would be my name. For the rest: my loves, my hates, down even to my deepest desires, I can no longer say whether these emotions are my own, or stolen from those I once so desperately wished to be.
Evelyn Waugh, Brideshead Revisited.
***

Attack the bend!

I run with the curvature of the track; the cold only makes me want to run faster.

Give it the kick.

I push with everything I’ve got around the next bend before the last 100 metre stretch. When I cross the line, I feel like I could be sick, so I lean on the bleachers and catch my breath.

I haven’t seen Shiina since the Christmas market, but that’s okay, because I’ve been able to run again. Someone finally cleared the snow from the track, and I’m so grateful for it.

In fact, everything is coming up Emi lately. I got all my homework done, and Miki went shopping with me in the City. I spent most of the Christmas break with Rin, and she came home with me to my mom’s house for a few nights. I think Mom thought something was up, but really, everything is going great.

I’m feeling great.

I push off from the bleacher and take a deep breath before I start to run again. I run underneath the flood lights.

Attack the bend.

I’m not angry that she didn’t come to see me.

Give it the kick.

I’m really feeling great lately. It’s like nothing ever happened between us.

Attack the bend.

Like nothing happened at all. Like I meant nothing to her.

[Give it the kick. [/i]

Before I can slow down, my thigh sends a shooting pain through me and I barely manage to brace myself for the fall. Thankfully, I’m able to roll on the track surface but my shoulder and arm sting like hell.

I guess that’s what I get for running angry.

I guess I’m annoyed. But I have a right to be, I think. It feels like Shiina used me, like, she didn’t really care.

Still, I know that’s not entirely true either. Maybe I should have been better and stayed with her. I didn’t mean to abandon her but… I just…

I thought she’d come back.

I drop my head into my hands. Today was the first day of classes since before Christmas, and I’m already losing my mind. I want to scream at Shiina, I want to hug her, I want to kiss her. But I feel like I can’t even face her.

Shakily, I get back up and assess the damage. It’s only a scrape, but Nurse will probably get on my case for this. That’s what I get for running with stuff on mind, I guess. I try to stretch and cool down a bit, but the stinging combines with the cold nip in the air to make my life hell, so I grab my coat and begin heading back for a shower.

It’s quite a pretty night out, with the stars twinkling like eyes in the night sky. It was like this when I met Shiina, and now that memory feels a bit bittersweet. Maybe it’s just the stinging of my graze. At least it’s stopped snowing recently. The tree tips sway in the breeze, like hands reaching up into space.

Part of me wishes I never met Shiina, this feeling, this insecurity, it’s unhealthy. Yet another part of me is desperate for her. I tried to just ‘let things happen’, as Miki suggested, but I’ve got nothing from it.

Well, more than nothing, I guess. Would I trade everything we had just to feel okay now? I don’t know.

The dorms kind of sneak up on me. I guess I got lost in my mind a bit.

It’s really quiet when I enter, and like always, I don’t have to queue for a shower. I really should have a cold one, but screw that, I’m freezing! The warm water feels refreshing, but my arm still stings beneath it.

With my towel wrapped around me, and my head no clearer than before, I make my way back into my dorm room and head inside. I get into some shorts and my hoodie in the absence of my pyjamas, which I’ve stupidly left at home, and scold myself for forgetting to brush my teeth. Right as I slide beneath the covers, someone thumps on my door several times.

“Give me a minute.”

I fling off the duvet and re-attach my prosthetics. Rin better have a good reason for knocking so late.

Fully attached, I open the door.

“Alright Rin, what’s the matter –“

“Hi,” Shiina whispers. “Can I come in?”

I stand aside and let her through. What the hell is she doing here? Why now?

After closing the door behind her, I sit back down on my bed and Shiina sits beside me. She’s wearing pyjamas, so she must have been in bed before she came to see me.

“I’m sorry,” she begins.

“Is that it?” I ask impatiently. I can’t even look at her right now.

“No, I, uh.”

I sigh. When I turn to face her, she looks nervous. Like I’m about to hurt her or something. It makes me feel a bit guilty.

“Shiina –“

“I want you to call me Misha.” She demands suddenly.

“You’re Shiina too me.”

“Please,” she whispers, and I sigh again.

“I thought we had something,” I begin, and Shiina looks like she might start crying.

“I’m sorry,” she thinks for a minute, “we did but…”

I lean back against my wall.

“You were already in love with someone else,” I explain and she nods solemnly.

“I hate myself for it, every day.”

Even though a little bit of me is breaking, I reach out for her hand and she timidly accepts.

“Did you know, when we started?” I ask.

A small part of me hates her, I think. But I don’t think she was being malicious. I’m not sure she’s capable of it.

“I… wasn’t sure.” Her voice has gotten so quiet now. “I didn’t want to hurt you, but I also didn’t want our friendship to end.”

After a few more moments of silence, I reach over and give her a hug.

“I don’t blame you for loving someone else,” I finally say, and it feels a bit like letting go. I don’t know where all my anger went, I just feel, sad. “I just wished we’d stopped before I –“ I don’t finish that sentence.

We stay sat like that for a while, with my arms wrapped around her. We shuffle a little, until eventually I’m sat in her arms and not the other way around.

“Can I ask who?” my curiosity eventually gets the better of me, even though I’m pretty sure the answer will hurt me.

“Shizune,” she timidly answers, and I’m not entirely sure I’m surprised.

“Is she –“

“A lesbian? I don’t think so.”

Well, that sucks. It makes me wonder why she likes her at all, but I guess you don’t get to choose these things. The world can be so awfully cruel sometimes.

It starts to snow again.

“I’m in love with Shizune,” Shiina whispers. “I should go.”

I shiver into her arms.

“I know,” I answer to both of her statements. “Just… not yet.”

We sit there, two silhouettes in the endless dark.

That’s the thing about the snow. It falls, and for a while everything looks pretty and magical. But then it melts away, and it’s like nothing really changed. Not really.

I think about Shiina and Misha. I think about Rin.

I just don’t want to think about anything anymore.

“You should tell her, Misha.”

It takes a while, but her breathing slows down like she’s falling asleep. Her eyes are closed when I look up.

“I will, just… not yet.”

I close my eyes.

I think about love stories. I think about happy endings.

That’s the thing about stories. They’re so rarely realistic.

And there’s no such thing as a happy ending. Not really.

All we have is this moment, all we have is right now.

I don’t want this to end.

But that’s the thing about stories. They have to end somewhere.

And I guess for us, that’s now.

***
Notes
Last edited by Feurox on Tue Dec 24, 2019 7:07 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 'Writing on the Wall' - SX for Cpl_Crud Notes

Post by Feurox » Tue Dec 24, 2019 7:04 am

Notes

***

For SX this year, I was given the prompt:
A prologue where Emi and Misha meet and clumsily realise that maybe they would like to experiment with each other...
For the prestigious and talented Cpl_Crud.

This prompt threw me a little at first. Early on I decided that I would fulfil what I think is the 'obvious' spirit of this wish, a bit of Emi on Misha action - but I didn't want to only tell that kind of story. My hope, is that despite a couple of canonical issues (I believe Miki shows up later in the year, and that photo of the festival is from a later festival), this story could be seen as a prequel to KS. Whilst I'm not sure I personally head-canon Emi and Misha together, I hope that this story can contribute to that idea in some way and be believable. I hope I did the prompt justice, but I suppose you'll have to be the judge of that.

If you didn't want lesbian lewds, then I'm sorry. My apologies Crud.

Oh, and Merry Christmas Cpl_Crud, may your new year be filled with wonder and the previous remain a happy memory!

Of course, some thanks as always are in order.

Prof_Allistair: Thank you, as always for a wonderful Secret Santa! I hope you enjoy this story!

Craftyatom: Your proofreading at a rush, and wonderful insight is useful as always. My thanks.

PKMNThiefChris and Lap: You both contributed so many ideas to this story, and helped me through it, that it feels like it belongs to you two as well as me. I hope my thanks, and this story, is enough to show my gratitude.

***

What follows is a selection of songs that I listened to in the making of this story, I think they fit thematically, but do let me know what you think, should you listen to them:

Writing's on the Wall - Plan B

Breathe (2AM) - Anna Nalick

Atlantis - Seafret

Greek Tragedy - Wombats


Many thanks all, and Merry Christmas!

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Re: 'Writing on the Wall' - SX for Cpl_Crud (Mature Content)

Post by cpl_crud » Tue Dec 24, 2019 8:49 am

Hey, thanks for the piece!

I like asking people to go backwards in the KS universe instead of forward. There's lots of fan works about what happens to everyone after the end of the story, but going backwards usually helps with the motivations in the lead-up to the main story. I also like that you attacked that issue in a round-about manner; I was originally thinking about a chronological story where they met and went from there, but starting them already as friends was cute.

I wasn't really looking for the lewds, but since they're there I'm not going to reject them.


All up, very cute and lots of warm feelings for Christmas!

Thanks kindly, Merry Christmas and happy new year!
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<Suriko> In a non-creepy fatherly way
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Re: 'Writing on the Wall' - SX for Cpl_Crud (Mature Content)

Post by PKMNthiefChris » Tue Dec 24, 2019 10:24 am

Okay as everyone on the discord server probably knows, I despise Misha. But I liked Shiina before she became Misha in this. That takes skill and you're writing was impeccable as always Feurox. Merry Christmas

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Re: 'Writing on the Wall' - SX for Cpl_Crud (Mature Content)

Post by Craftyatom » Tue Dec 24, 2019 6:48 pm

Well, I've already shared my opinion on this story with Feurox, having proofread it, but I should post here, too.

I really liked the first half of the story. The characters played off of each other really well, and the interactions were really sweet. Rin, Miki, and the main pair all felt really solid, and excellently-written. But I also kind of knew that it wouldn't last very long - after all, this is supposed to be a prequel, and they're not together in canon, so we weren't likely to see things end up all rosy. Especially with Feurox behind the wheel.

The breakdown in their relationship felt a bit stilted to me. Half of it was Misha's self-image, which is a really powerful plot point to explore. But nope, that was just a symptom of Misha's desire to try and make Shizune like her, apparently. Oh, and nothing has happened recently to make her like Shizune more, but she just kind of decided that the whole thing with Emi wasn't a good idea, despite knowing that Shizune is a bad idea. I'm totally down with the idea that in romance, emotion trumps logic sometimes - but this felt like a stretch, even so. I would've liked to see more of an up-front transition in Misha - you hinted at it with the hair and name and stuff, but that should've been the focus of the story, not just a piece of foreshadowing, imo.

All that said, I mean, in some sense I'm just looking for ways to justify why I didn't love this story. It was well-written, and the characterizations were good, but in the end, it felt like kind of a stretch to me? Especially with the final monologue about how there's no such thing as a happy ending. That was really laying it on thicker than it needed to be. Emi's clearly sad, but this didn't help tell the reader how sad she was, or what type of sadness it was - it fell a bit flat. IMO.

All in all, it's a good story, and fits well with your other works. It was enjoyable to read, even if I didn't always enjoy it as much as I wanted to.
cpl_crud wrote:
Tue Dec 24, 2019 8:49 am
I wasn't really looking for the lewds, but since they're there I'm not going to reject them.
I'm usually on the naive end of the spectrum, but "clumsily realise that maybe they would like to experiment with each other" doesn't sound like there's much of a choice, by my reading. I was a bit surprised that Feurox put so much depth and detail into it (was Misha so good at it because this wasn't her first rodeo?), but it ended up working really well, I think. For a prompter who didn't expect lewds and a writer who doesn't focus on lewds, this was a very lewd story, just saying :P
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Re: 'Writing on the Wall' - SX for Cpl_Crud (Mature Content)

Post by Hanako Fancopter » Tue Dec 24, 2019 11:56 pm

No for some reason I thought this one wasn't going to be sad! AGHH. Very well written though, and nicely woven into the story of the game. I don't think that lewds were necessary strictly speaking, "experimenting" could be limited to a single hesitant kiss after all, if even that--but obviously, of all people, I'm not upset that you went for it anyways, and the intimacy was also well-written. Great work!
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Re: 'Writing on the Wall' - SX for Cpl_Crud (Mature Content)

Post by Mirage_GSM » Thu Dec 26, 2019 7:36 pm

Now this is going to teach me to try to read "just one more thread" before going to bed... (Spoiler: No, it won't)
At least now I know that Feurox is physically incapable of writing short stories :-)
Craftyatom wrote:I'm usually on the naive end of the spectrum, but "clumsily realise that maybe they would like to experiment with each other" doesn't sound like there's much of a choice, by my reading.
It's a good thing for Crud that this prompt did not go to me, because I'm 99% certain my story would have involved chemistry make-up lessons or Mutou's failed first attempt at starting a science club... :lol:

One thing that struck me as odd was Rin admonishing Emi for thinking to much - and the line “Well I can’t help if you won’t let me.” from Emi... The irony hurts so much I can't help but think those were intentional. :-)
Emi > Misha > Hanako > Lilly > Rin > Shizune

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Re: 'Writing on the Wall' - SX for Cpl_Crud (Mature Content)

Post by PsychicSpy » Thu Dec 26, 2019 11:18 pm

Enjoyed the fic, good characterization, good emotion, and, importantly, well-written intimacy. Very nice!
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Re: 'Writing on the Wall' - SX for Cpl_Crud (Mature Content)

Post by TheHivemind » Sat Dec 28, 2019 4:09 pm

Well!

This was pleasantly depressing. Or depressingly pleasant.

Or a pretty good prelude to the epilogue I wrote, once upon a time. This is, as it turns out, multiple things at once! Sweet and sad and delightful.

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Re: 'Writing on the Wall' - SX for Cpl_Crud (Mature Content)

Post by NuclearStudent » Mon Dec 30, 2019 9:02 am

Overall, quite excellent and atmospheric. Emi's slow realization of her feelings was fine writing work. I think you used Rin excellently as a mirror for Emi, and Miki was also used fairly well. This will probably be my favourite SX entry. However, there were a few problems. As Crafty mentioned, the breakdown of the Emi-Misha relationship was rather stilted, and probably the weakest part of the story as a whole. Trying to write Emi's observation of the Lilly/Shizune fallout was ambitious, but also fell flat for me. A handful of SPAG and flow issues also slipped through the proofreading process. Impressive work overall, though.

Notes:

I don't know if it was a deliberate decision not to immediately reveal that the POV character was Emi. If it was deliberate, it was a bad judgment call. It makes getting into the story confusing.
I think about my ex. I think about Rin. I think about tomorrow.

Then I stop thinking altogether.
I'm not a fan of the "then I stop thinking altogether" cliche. The reader's mileage may vary. Personally I've read that sort of line too often for it to get to me.
“I guess practise is off for a while then,” Miki states, she looks pretty bored.
"Practise" should be "practice."
“I’m going to class; you should get going soon short-fry.”
This is very subjective, but I don't think that this sentence quite flows right.
“Have you spoken to that girl yet?” She asks. “The pretty one.” She clarifies.

“No Rin.”

“Are you going too?”
"too" should be "to"
It’s just so rare to meet genuine kindness. It’s so sad to be surprised by honestly.
Flow of sentence is broken. Perhaps add comma?

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Re: 'Writing on the Wall' - SX for Cpl_Crud (Mature Content)

Post by Feurox » Mon Dec 30, 2019 1:40 pm

cpl_crud wrote:
Tue Dec 24, 2019 8:49 am
Hey, thanks for the piece!

I like asking people to go backwards in the KS universe instead of forward. There's lots of fan works about what happens to everyone after the end of the story, but going backwards usually helps with the motivations in the lead-up to the main story. I also like that you attacked that issue in a round-about manner; I was originally thinking about a chronological story where they met and went from there, but starting them already as friends was cute.
No problem at all. It was an absolute pleasure and privilege to write, and it's given me some future ideas for a similar story, so my thanks!
cpl_crud wrote:
Tue Dec 24, 2019 8:49 am
I wasn't really looking for the lewds, but since they're there I'm not going to reject them.
(It's not something I usually write, I only did it because I thought that's what you wanted... That'll teach me to assume. :P )
PKMNthiefChris wrote:
Tue Dec 24, 2019 10:24 am
Okay as everyone on the discord server probably knows, I despise Misha. But I liked Shiina before she became Misha in this. That takes skill and you're writing was impeccable as always Feurox. Merry Christmas
My thanks! I'm glad I could sell you on Shiina, maybe in future I'll write some more with her! Hope you had a lovely Christmas!
Craftyatom wrote:
Tue Dec 24, 2019 6:48 pm
Well, I've already shared my opinion on this story with Feurox, having proofread it, but I should post here, too.

I really liked the first half of the story. The characters played off of each other really well, and the interactions were really sweet. Rin, Miki, and the main pair all felt really solid, and excellently-written. But I also kind of knew that it wouldn't last very long - after all, this is supposed to be a prequel, and they're not together in canon, so we weren't likely to see things end up all rosy. Especially with Feurox behind the wheel.

The breakdown in their relationship felt a bit stilted to me. Half of it was Misha's self-image, which is a really powerful plot point to explore. But nope, that was just a symptom of Misha's desire to try and make Shizune like her, apparently. Oh, and nothing has happened recently to make her like Shizune more, but she just kind of decided that the whole thing with Emi wasn't a good idea, despite knowing that Shizune is a bad idea. I'm totally down with the idea that in romance, emotion trumps logic sometimes - but this felt like a stretch, even so. I would've liked to see more of an up-front transition in Misha - you hinted at it with the hair and name and stuff, but that should've been the focus of the story, not just a piece of foreshadowing, imo.
Thanks again for proofreading this at such late notice, and congratulations on your own SX story! It was a wonderful read! As for the comments on how this story should have gone... I can only really agree. My only comment would be that this is a story about Emi, and not Misha - I do have plans to write a story that details Shiina's transformation more, but it drifted away from the purpose of this SX, and it became about too much at once, IMO (and Lap's). It's difficult not being able to get everything I wanted to put in, in, but I really wanted to be on time. You win some, you lose some.
Hanako Fancopter wrote:
Tue Dec 24, 2019 11:56 pm
No for some reason I thought this one wasn't going to be sad! AGHH. Very well written though, and nicely woven into the story of the game. I don't think that lewds were necessary strictly speaking, "experimenting" could be limited to a single hesitant kiss after all, if even that--but obviously, of all people, I'm not upset that you went for it anyways, and the intimacy was also well-written. Great work!
Ha, sorry to make everything sad (though it is my M.O). I'm glad you enjoyed the intimacy, since your own writing was the benchmark :P Many thanks for the kind words.
Mirage_GSM wrote:
Thu Dec 26, 2019 7:36 pm
Now this is going to teach me to try to read "just one more thread" before going to bed... (Spoiler: No, it won't)
At least now I know that Feurox is physically incapable of writing short stories :-)

One thing that struck me as odd was Rin admonishing Emi for thinking to much - and the line “Well I can’t help if you won’t let me.” from Emi... The irony hurts so much I can't help but think those were intentional. :-)
Sorry to keep you up! Hope it was worth it! :D As for the Rin and Emi comments you mention, yes, it was intentional, I'm glad it got through :P (Hopefully not too heavy handed!) There are quite a few scenes with double meanings, / phrases. The least of all being the title, which is a pretty accurate phrase if you ask me.
PsychicSpy wrote:
Thu Dec 26, 2019 11:18 pm
Enjoyed the fic, good characterization, good emotion, and, importantly, well-written intimacy. Very nice!
My thanks! And I hope you had a lovely Christmas!
TheHivemind wrote:
Sat Dec 28, 2019 4:09 pm
Well!

This was pleasantly depressing. Or depressingly pleasant.

Or a pretty good prelude to the epilogue I wrote, once upon a time. This is, as it turns out, multiple things at once! Sweet and sad and delightful.
Seems I have some reading to do then! Many thanks for the kind words, and for taking the time to read the story! (Also glad you found it depressingly pleasant, rather than cruds' enjoyment: 'lots of warm fuzzy feelings'). :lol:
NuclearStudent wrote:
Mon Dec 30, 2019 9:02 am
Overall, quite excellent and atmospheric. Emi's slow realization of her feelings was fine writing work. I think you used Rin excellently as a mirror for Emi, and Miki was also used fairly well. This will probably be my favourite SX entry. However, there were a few problems. As Crafty mentioned, the breakdown of the Emi-Misha relationship was rather stilted, and probably the weakest part of the story as a whole. Trying to write Emi's observation of the Lilly/Shizune fallout was ambitious, but also fell flat for me. A handful of SPAG and flow issues also slipped through the proofreading process. Impressive work overall, though.
Thank you for the thoughtful feedback and comment! Can only re-iterate what I said in answer to Crafty's comment really. Will freely admit, this was an ambitious project. Thanks for finding those spag errors too, Crafty was really only looking for the flow and massive errors, so I'll tidy the rest up asap.

Thanks all! Have a wonderful New Year!

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Re: 'Writing on the Wall' - SX for Cpl_Crud (Mature Content)

Post by cpl_crud » Tue Dec 31, 2019 7:21 am

Craftyatom wrote:
Tue Dec 24, 2019 6:48 pm


All in all, it's a good story, and fits well with your other works. It was enjoyable to read, even if I didn't always enjoy it as much as I wanted to.
cpl_crud wrote:
Tue Dec 24, 2019 8:49 am
I wasn't really looking for the lewds, but since they're there I'm not going to reject them.
I'm usually on the naive end of the spectrum, but "clumsily realise that maybe they would like to experiment with each other" doesn't sound like there's much of a choice, by my reading. I was a bit surprised that Feurox put so much depth and detail into it (was Misha so good at it because this wasn't her first rodeo?), but it ended up working really well, I think. For a prompter who didn't expect lewds and a writer who doesn't focus on lewds, this was a very lewd story, just saying :P
I usually don't reply to forum posts, but when I do...

There's a couple of things that I wanted to point out.

One is that I've been on both sides of a quick-fire relationship that was extinguished because the other side was still "in love" with someone else. There is a lot of guilt and shame etc wrapped up in that (read "Oh shit, why did I sleep with you when I still love Emilia") so the breakdown is sudden and kind of works in this case.


As for the implication of lewds... Maybe I'm just not horny enough anymore, but what I was looking for was the backstory. It's pretty much been established that Misha and Emi have fooled around in the past, so I'm not interested in that that - I'm interested in the why...


Well I was anyway. I guess now I'm interested in both.


Also, remember: Devs are Trolls.
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Re: 'Writing on the Wall' - SX for Cpl_Crud (Mature Content)

Post by Oddball » Fri Feb 14, 2020 7:49 pm

I like the story for the most part. There are things that I don't think fit, but as a stand alone story, it's really good.

As a prequel, I'm not sure it works. It actually feels less like a prequel to Katawa Shoujo and more like an alternate version. The pieces are close to the same, but they never quite come together the same way. I suppose some of that can simply be the result of the cast having changed more by the time Hisao arrives though.

Emi's character was actually handled quite well. There was quite a bit of personality the without mining into the typical "Emi characteristics" checklist.

The relationships between the characters I feel is most worth commenting on. Not the Emi/Misha stuff, because I feel that stands well on its own. You set off to tell that story and you did a good job. It's the other relationships between characters I'd most like to comment on.

Having Rin come across as a voice of reason is a twist you don't see to often. Also interesting is that the two of them don't really seem to be as close as they were in the game. Instead Miki seems to have taken the role of person you hang out and talk with but you're not really friends. It's quite a different dynamic than you see in the game.

Misha and Shizune... that one doesn't quite gel as well for me. Misha never really feels like she's actually close to Shizune at any point, and the idea that she's changing herself for Shizune (and thus ending the relationship with Emi) never seems as grounded as it should be. It feels like Shizune should have a stronger presence in the story than she does.

Also, I never would have expected the story to be set in the winter given the picture we have to go with it.

Over all though, good work.

Oh, and you messed up a tag.
[Give it the kick. [/i]
Not Dead Yet

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