8

in which Tohru makes a decision


Hitting the water was a cold shock, so much colder than it'd seemed on the beach. Tohru dove forward, holding her breath as best she could and trying not to think about anything except going forward, going deeper. Why didn't she go in after him? Why indeed, Mr. Takahashi. So Tohru swam further and deeper, until she wasn't swimming anymore at all, merely floating in darkness, eyes open but seeing nothing.

"Hello?" she tried, hoping someone would talk to her. Nothing did at first. There was only darkness, and the silence held for what might have been hours, if time could be measured in dreams. Eventually, ever so tentatively, a voice replied.

"Who are you?" it asked, low and timid.

"My name is Tohru Honda." Still she could see nothing, and it was impossible to trace the origin of his voice in the inky, wandering darkness.

"Why are you here?"

"I followed someone. I wanted to help him. What is this place?"

"Hell."

Tohru jolted awake. She sat up, putting a hand to her chest to calm her nerves. She bit her bottom lip, ideas and emotions running crazily in her head. Foremost among them was the searing, staggering idea that she now understood something that had escaped her all this time.

"I want to help him," she murmured. "I will help him."