Well, love Mahou Tsukai Tai as I do, I decided to take a shot at writing some fiction for it. This is that shot. Enjoy, and do please R&R!

FOLLOW YOU

Prologue

She had gone through all of life more or less disinterested in most things, for the simple fact that most things were very much disinterested in her. Well, that wasn't exactly true; they had a very vehement, if not very thin, layer of interest, but that, she learned quickly, was so shallow that you couldn't even wade in it. It certainly didn't hold much weight for very long. After all, when you were as beautiful as she was, as photogenic, you had to go about things carefully. You never knew, she'd taught herself, when someone was interested in you or in your appearance. To protect herself, she had cultivated this level of disinterest to an art form, so that, by the time she was sixteen, nothing touched her anymore. The camera loved her, she knew that, and it gave her enough pride to get by that all over the world, people could see her face. It didn't matter that they thought it was a beautiful face, because everyone thought it was a beautiful face. That had ceased to make her feel good. Now it was just the truth.

Magic had been different. Again, she'd just been good at that, because she was good at everything she did. It didn't come from the heart, like Sawanoguchi's came from her heart, but it was far more reliable than Sawanoguchi's was, and if she just put her mind to it, she could do anything she wanted to. If, say, someone was following her for too long, boring her, driving her out of her mind with sheer disinterest, magic was the easy-out option. She could turn the guy into a balloon and laugh a little to herself in triumph as he floated away. It wasn't very fulfilling, but at least there were little victories, small but satisfying. She'd go to work the day after and people would leave her alone properly. Maybe, she wouldn't even have the usual flock of men asking to go out that night; then, she could spend a nice evening alone, at home, listening to music and feeling something. Anything. Usually, it was a great sadness, but it wasn't disinterest, and that was a start.

But magic had been a highschool phenomenon. First Takakura and Aburatsubo had graduated, and the club was abandoned; then Sawanoguchi and Nakatomi left the year after, and Aikawa Akane forgot all about magic and magic wands that looked like ducks and afternoons feeling as if she belonged somewhere. Akane, in fact, turned her sights towards acting at her mother's urging and starred in her first hit movie right after she'd finished highschool. It was only a bit part, of course, but she had to be introduced slowly, her manager said, and she'd nodded and smiled and he'd asked her if she'd like to go to dinner that night, maybe?

Four years later, after all memories of Kitanohashi and a man named Minowa Minoru (who'd promised to protect her despite it all) and broomsticks (that really could fly) had faded from her mind, she was handed the lead female role in a movie that was guaranteed to be a hit. At her manager's urging she took it, and worked as hard as she ever did at anything during the long hours of filming, and everyone thought she'd done brilliantly. It was only after the filming was over and the editing was all finished and her face was in every preview in every magazine in Japan that her manager told her she had to have a pre-screening party, to celebrate and to promote her success.

But who should I invite? Akane asked over a very expensive lobster, which she hadn't touched yet and probably wouldn't for the rest of the night. Her manager, Mr. Yamada, waved his fork vaguely as he ate his American-style steak and replied,

Mr. Yamada made up the invitation list and showed it to her in passing, a few days later. Something nagged at the back of Akane's mind as most things did and she said, in a very easy voice, high and light, Do you think I could invite some old friends?

That's a perfect promotional tactic! Mr. Yamada had replied, instantly gleeful. Old highschool friends, of course? The photographers will love it. I'll make sure they come. So Akane wrote down four names, not knowing how time had changed even herself, much less the vague memories of friends she'd almost completely forgotten. It was impulsive, asking if they could be invited, and she was nearly sure that they wouldn't come. Well, Sawanoguchi might, unless she was still friends with Nakatomi – which no doubt she was – in which case, if Nakatomi wasn't pleased by the idea, neither of them would show up. She hoped to herself that at least Mr. Yamada wouldn't turn all red at the temples and the vein in his neck wouldn't start bulging when it didn't work out. Still, the man did have powers of persuasion like no one else, and wouldn't it be funny, she thought, more amusing than things had been for a while, if everyone saw everyone else again? That was, assuming they'd all forgotten one another, as she had lost track of time, disinterest taking over so dreadfully, and forgotten them.