Author's Note: Continuing with the sad Hina perspective stories. Kept thinking about this idea and finally got around to writing it last night. Major spoilers.
They followed behind as two staff members for the fireworks festival ushered them through the throng of onlookers and reporters to the building's entrance, rain blown across their path by the wind and splashing at them. The expressions in the crowd seemed to be a mix of apprehensive and incredulous, and Hina couldn't help but feel nervous herself. She stood out and clearly was drawing their attention, between the escort they had received and the kimono she wore. It must be obvious to everyone that she was the rumored sunshine girl.
"Are you nervous?", Hodaka asked, snapping her out of the thoughts she had become lost in.
"...No", she answered, a little unconvincingly, as she shook her head and smiled. "I'm fine."
He paused before continuing, but she left it at that and he moved on. "There's a lot of people here... It's amazing."
'Yeah. It is, huh?". They entered the building and were lead to the elevator for their trip fifty-four floors up.
They stepped outside again on to the roof of the tower and in to the wind, even harsher at this height, sweeping across it and buffeting them with raindrops. She shot a glance at Hodaka, seeing him smile and give her a thumbs up and flashing him a smile in return, and walked across the helicopter pad to the raised deck that sat overlooking the city, climbing its stairs and taking her place.
Something else was at the back of her mind besides the rain, the wind, and the crowed below, no matter how much she tried to push it out of her head entirely.
It had only been a few weeks, as best she could remember, after the first time she had visited that rooftop shrine last summer that she had begun to notice strange things, although she hadn't quite realized the pattern until later. The strange water droplets that seemed to defy gravity as they twirled around and formed the shapes of fish in the air came first. Later on she had begun to notice the watery, translucent appearance her skin had taken in patches on the left side of her body, and how it slowly and steadily grew.
It had barely crossed her mind the possibility it could truly grant her some special power like this when she had stepped through the gate in prayer the first time, let alone that it could come with consequences. It had sunk in by now though that all this was taking a toll on her body in some way she didn't fully understand.
Thinking about it, she hesitated. What would become of her? What would happen if the water kept spreading? Would it all have been worth it in the end?
She didn't have to keep doing this. It would be tough, but she could find another normal job. But when she thought of the people lining the streets, worried or frustrated looks on their faces, and imagined them turning to surprise and joy as the evening sun poked through the clouds and fireworks filled up the sky, or remembered Hodaka's awestruck reaction the first time she had showed him her power, it made it harder to imagine walking away, despite everything.
Hina clasped her hands together, closed her eyes, and began silently to pray. Even without looking, she knew the water droplets would encircle her once again.
Doing it for a little longer wouldn't kill her, would it?
She felt the wind slow to a gentle breeze and the raindrops that danced around her blown by that wind fall away. She felt the slightest touch of the sun's warmth, and, as she opened her eyes, saw the rays bathe Tokyo below her in golden light, at first only poking through holes in the clouds as they slowly drew open like a curtain and allowed more and more of the light through. Her heart skipped a beat as she turned and stepped down the stairs, seeing the amazed expressions of the event coordinators and the huge smile on Hodaka's face.
The two of them sat there on the roof as the sun Hina had brought through the clouds set and, as the evening turned to night, the fireworks began to light up the sky themselves.
Smiling and stretching her arms, she turned to look at Hodaka during a lull in the display. "Thank you", she said, and he glanced over at her. "I really love...-", she trailed off, the doubts and worries all coming back to her mind in that moment before she saw the slight change in his expression, his mouth open just a bit in surprise and a faint blush on his face, and had to stop herself from letting out a tiny giggle. "-This sunshine girl job."
Just for a little while, all her troubles seemed as far away as the ground below them.