Fushigi Yuugi - A Continued Continuation
Disclaimer: I do not own Fushigi Yuugi or any of its characters.
This takes place after the Eikoden.
Chapter 1 : The Search for Mayo
A pair of green eyes shot open, their wake interrupting what had been a quiet meditation. A figure stood up from her position on the floor, glancing around the dim crystal shrine as though expecting to find something out of place.
She breathed in slowly. "Something's coming..." she whispered. The feeling of uncertainty still weighing on her mind, she grabbed a long, gold object off the floor beside her and quickly left the small building.
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"Go in... go in!" a brown-haired girl yelled at a basketball as it swirled dangerously around the rim of a red hoop. Finally, it tipped over and plunged through the net. "YEAH!" She cried, jumping into the air.
Keisuke blew his whistle from the corner of the gym. "All right, nice practice! Get to the lockers!" He ordered the class.
The members of the girls' basketball team eagerly picked up their equipment and put it back in place along the racks lined up against the walls, each filing into the double doors that marked the locker room. As the girls passed by, Keisuke motioned for the brunette to step aside.
"What is it coach?" She asked, standing beside him casually.
Keisuke's serious demeanor turned aside his student's smile. "Kawai, where is Mayo Sakaki today? Is she ill?"
Saori thought. "She didn't come to school today, so I suppose she is. I'll call her tonight, though." She turned back to the doors. "Good-bye, Coach!" She waved.
It had been one year since the incident involving Mayo's unexpected entrance into the Universe of the Four Gods. Mayo returned happily to her home, and after much thought, gave up on her long winded crush on Taka. She even managed to get along with Miaka... as best as she could, though the two didn't meet up very often. All in all, Mayo was now and again living the normal life of a third year high school student. Mayo probably was sick, she was pretty good about making it to school.
After a long walk from the school in the drizzling rain, Saori stepped into her home, shaking her head to release the water from her short hair. She slipped off her dark gray shoes and darted upstairs to her bedroom. Though tired from her hard practice in addition to running home in the wet weather, she hurriedly slipped off her uniform and changed into blue jeans and a pink tank top. She took out the four barrettes she always wore in her hair and ran a brush through the wet tangles. Then, she went downstairs for a snack to restore her lost energy. Halfway through her rice cake, she remembered her conversation with her coach.
"I should call Mayo." She thought, leaning over the counter. "If she's really sick, I should at least offer to bring her homework to her, for what classes we have together, anyway."
Setting down the half-eaten ball of rice, she ran back up the stairs. Plopping onto her bed near the window, she picked up a white phone from the nightstand and dialed her best friend's number. To her disappointment, the other end came up busy. Saori put the phone down, but as soon as she did, it rang, startling her. Cautiously she picked it up, hitting the "talk" button. "Moshi-moshi?" She asked.
"Saori? Is that you?"
Saori sat up. "Mrs. Sakaki? Yes, this is she."
"Oh good." The woman replied. "Is Mayo over there?"
Saori's eyes blinked with bewilderment. "Mayo? No, she's not here…" Why would Mayo mother be asking where her daughter was? "Isn't Mayo sick today?"
There was a pause. Mrs. Sakaki let out a worried sigh. "I haven't seen her since she went to bed last night. Did...did she go to school?"
An expression of worry came over Saori's face. "No, Ma'm. She didn't come to basketball practice either." Saori's eyebrows lowered in confusion.
Again, a silence followed.
"Well, thank you Saori-chan. If you do see her, give me a call, okay? Have a good day."
Saori heard a 'click' and put the phone back in its holster. She leaned back against her pillows, putting her arms behind her head. "Odd..." She said, thinking out loud, "where could Mayo have gone?" It really wasn't too unusual for her friend to go out without telling her mother, but sluffing school? Who knows what could be going on… maybe Mayo's parents had had another argument and Mayo just wanted out.
Saori forced herself to shrug it off and think of other things. Her big basketball game was next week, which was exciting... they were playing Jouan, after all. She'd practice for it, but it was so dreary outside... she dared not to.
Getting up and walking to her window, Saori pulled away the light blue curtain and stared at the small droplets racing down the glass. A car passed on their street, illuminating the slick asphalt. Saori yawned. It had been a long day. Despite the fact that she had English homework, Saori privileged herself to a nap.
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"It's so hot... why is it so hot?" Saori gave a sigh, wiping her forehead. "Where am I?"
Saori turned around. "Hello?" She called back.
"Saori-chan! Saori-chan! Help!"
Saori perked up, trying to find the direction of the voice in the blackness that engulfed her. "Mayo? Mayo! Where are you!"
> > > > > > > >
"Uh!" Saori grunted as she sat up in bed. It took a moment to realize where she was. She put a hand on her forehead. "What was that?" It was 8:32 already; Saori's nap had gone over-time. She rubbed her eyes and looked around again. "Mayo?" She called, quietly. She shook her head. "Mayo is probably home." She argued with herself. She glanced at the alarm clock again. 8:33. She needed to get her homework done still…
Saori glanced around her classroom for the fourth time. She couldn't concentrate on her studies. Where was Mayo? Saori had called over before she came to school that morning. Mrs. Sakaki still hadn't seen her daughter, and had filed a police report for a missing person. There was no sign of her anywhere. Saori had heard people talking before class started, word must have traveled fast. She felt like she could just cry. Where was her friend? Was she all right?
"Yes, Kaiko. That is correct." She heard the teacher say from the front of the room. Saori put her head in her hand and quietly tapped her pencil, staring into the depths her book. "It's like Mayo disappeared into another world altogether…"
She perked up, memories flooding into her mind of the odd scenario of when she had been called into the hospital, only to learn that her friend had gone into... a storybook! Could she have returned? No, that was ridiculous. Everything was solved, wasn't it?
"Kawai!" Came a stern female voice.
Saori straightened up. "Hai!" She spoke.
"Don't day dream in my class, Kawai." The curly-haired woman scolded.
"Gomen nasai, Miss Akusa." Saori apologized. The teacher eyed her suspiciously, and returned to her lesson.
Keisuke Yuuki turned from watching the practice game and redirected his eyes to the young woman behind him. "Yes, what is it, Kawai?"
Saori looked serious, and a little frightened. "Sir, I need to speak with you, about the Universe of the Four... Gods." Saori said sternly, trying to remember the name of the red book.
Keisuke suddenly went serious too. He looked back at the girls shooting hoops, and saw that Taka was watching over everything. He gently put his hand on Saori's shoulder and pulled her towards the wall. "Kawai, what do you mean? Why are you worrying about that book?"
Saori stood straight. "It's Mayo. She's missing. She hasn't been home for two days, and she's still not at school. Her mother doesn't know where she is, I don't know where she is... I'm worried that maybe..."
"She went back?" Keisuke interrupted, heaving a sigh. "Saori, I'm sure Mayo will turn up." Keisuke said reassuringly. "Besides, the book disappeared, remember?"
"I know." Saori stated in a stubborn tone. "But I still..."
"That's enough," said Keisuke, dropping the subject he was a bit sensitive about. "Return to the game." Keisuke stepped aside, and Saori reluctantly went with the other girls to play basketball.
Saori was a reasonable girl, but her gut feeling was aching her. After some deep though, she knew Mayo was in that book... how she got there, she didn't know. But several things had confused her when it came to that hospital room... so she skipped trying to analyze and explain her reasoning and sat down in her desk chair at home to figure out a way to get Mayo back.
Those words were Mayo's. She had been talking to Saori. But how? Saori pounded her fist on the table in frustration. "How in the world can I get into that... that place?" Saori asked herself. "How did Mayo get in? No, that's no good." She interrogated herself. "Wait, how did I talk to her..." Saori remembered the Japanese characters appearing on the glass window in the hospital... Mayo's lipstick. Saori snapped her fingers. "The makeup! Saori left her bag there when she returned with Miaka... so maybe it's still there!"
Stupid yes,. But she couldn't come up with anything better.
Saori sprang up from her chair and darted to her closet to look for the blue tube of lipstick that she never wore anymore. She kept a shoe box in there of her old makeup, too stingy to throw any of it away. She ruffled through several similiar boxes, looking for the item. Finally she found the right one, threw some half-used blush palettes and mascara bottles on the floor, pulling out one of the two tubes of lipstick that she and Mayo had bought at the mall the year before.
"If Mayo was wearing her uniform when she went in, then it should be easier… I think." Saori commented. She felt silly, but looked hard at the nearly empty lipstick tube and clutched it in her fist. "Please, let me talk to Mayo! Let me see her!"
Nothing happened. Saori squeezed the lipstick harder with the one hand, and clutched the front of her uniform with the other. She pictured Mayo in her head, remembering the state she had been in when she had come out of the book the first time. Keisuke didn't believe her, but she had to find out…
"I know I don't have the book... but... TAKE ME TO MAYO!" she screamed, forgetting that someone else in the house could hear her. "Please, TAKE ME INTO THAT BOOK!"
Red light shined from under Saori's fists, the rays spinning around like a pinwheel. The light brightened and grew until it filled the entire room, then left as though it had never been there, the room unscathed.
The red light of Suzaku had once again appeared in the real world, and this time, it left with Saori.
Unbeknownst to anyone else, an old, dirty book quietly slid off the shelf of Tokyo's National Library, falling open to page one on the floor.