Well I got bored today and suddenly, while making muffins, inspiration strikes. I'll never understand why I got the idea to write this while making muffins, but you're not supposed to look a gift horse in the mouth so I won't question it.
You never see fanfiction specifically for this character; I guess it's because none of the Furuba fans like her. Personally I admire how human she is, so I decided to write something to try to illustrate that. If you've waiting on an update for DPF, fear not. It shall come in due time.
Normal disclaimer applies.
Heart, we will forget him!
You and I to-night!
You may forget the warmth he gave,
I will forget the light.
When you have done, pray tell me,
That I my thoughts may dim;
Haste! lest while you're lagging,
I may remember him!
She brushed her shaking fingers against the marker and gently laid the fresh flowers down on the dewy grass. The stone was grey and plain with his name, his birth and death date and a single line of sentiment etched into it's surface.
It was a simple thing.
It was a beautiful thing.
It was a cold thing.
"Mom, please, can we go now?"
Her face crinkled in exasperation. Her son was so impatient; he reminded her of herself at that age.
"Come on Mom. This place is miserable."
She brought her narrowed eyes to his face.
"Show some respect Ryota. You stand amongst the dead; this is not the time nor the place for your foolishness."
"Who the hell are you visiting anyway?"
The boy gestured crossly to the headstone.
"He's not a part of our family; this isn't our plot. What are we doing here visitng a stranger?"
Her eyes narrowed and, with a speed belying her old appearance, she rapped him across the head with her walking cane.
"ACK! What the hell was that for?"
She hit him again; the arms he put up in defense made no difference to the overall force of the impact.
"Is this what I raised? A crude, fowl-mouthed stooge? Even at thirty two you still act like a bratty twelve year-old!"
"AUGH! That hurts, you old hag!" She swung especially hard for that one. "ACK! Okay, OKAY! I get the point and I'm SORRY already! Jeez!"
Though skeptical of his sincerity she let the offense slide. She could find ways to punish him later for his insolence. Instead she lowered her cane and went back to inspecting the grave. Indeed, for all intents and purposes, the man that lay resting six feet underneath her had been no closer to her than the people standing beside her at the bus-stop or behind her in line at the grocers.
Yet she visited him because even as she had aged into an older woman she still cared for him; because although he had never given her more than a passing look she had so wanted there to be something more that she couldn't imagine moving on.
There had been something special about him that she never wanted to forget. She imagined it was sort of like meeting an angel and only realizing it at the last minute. His personality had nearly driven her crazy-- polite yet aloof, civil and cold. He had built a wall around him that she had known from the start she could never climb; so she decided, instead, to admire that wall and the person behind it. To aspire and dream and hope and crave but to never really achieve.
Because of this there was a deep-set regret within her, an inexplicable dysphoria that continued to pulse even as she had come to terms with her idol worship. And although this despair was a horrible burden to carry she gladly propped it onto her shoulders if only to form some semblance of a relationship between them.
Her son scoffed behind her. "You're looking at that damn slab like it's the Mona Lisa. What's so special about it, huh? It's no different than any of the other ones."
She spun to face him and gave him such a look that his eyes were riveted to hers, his feet frozen to the ground.
They stood like that for one long, awkwardly silent moment. He, confused and bitter; she, angry and disappointed.
she whacked him with her cane again but it was a tired, affectionate gesture bespoken of an old woman, the anger of a disgruntled mother having long ago dissapated,
"have no sense of aesthetics."
He rubbed the spot where she had hit him with a hand, his thoughts puzzled. "What are you talking about? Aesthetics... what does that have to do with this?"
It was there within him-- that blatant ignorance that comes only with youth. She saw it for what it was, as most parents do, and she scoffed at him sourly.
"I should have known better. You're still too young, and far too bullheaded to understand what it's like."
Despite his arrogance he loved her deeply, as most children do, and her words stung him even as her expression softened. She was looking at the stone again, tracing her fingers over the grooves that each polished letter created.
"Understand what? What do you know that I don't?"
There it was again; she looked up at him fondly even as her eyes narrowed in contempt. "You're a very selfish person, do you know that?"
He huffed, offended by her blunt remark. He was used to their regular banter but right at that moment her critique had been honest, her voice stripped of its usual cynicism. He watched as her eyes glazed over with that faraway dreamy quality they always took whenever she lost herself in memory and nostalgia. She touched her fingers to her temple and sighed.
"Don't be so offended, stupid boy. It's a compliment of sorts; you're almost exactly like myself at your age and I turned out healthy enough." She paused before muttering disdainfully under her breath an extra passage. "Of course it didn't help matters that I had a tendency to be overly dramatic and a hopeless romantic to boot."
Curiosity killed the cat, as they say. If that was true than he was in a decidedly suicidal mood.
"So... what is whatever "IT" is... uh, what's it like?"
She looked up at his face, turned to the headstone, then back at him again before speaking-- her voice hushed and reverant like a tainted priest in confessional.
"At first you notice the little things. You choose to ignore them because that's all they really are-- little things. But time goes by. Bit by bit, year by year you begin to see the world more clearly and then one day your mind surprises you."
He thrust his hands into his pockets, hiding his worried look from her, choosing to remain quiet as a signal for her to continue.
"It comes so incredibly, amazingly sudden that all you can do is stay where you are, shocked. It's an epiphany; a revelation of sorts that only a handful of people are spared. One day-- one day out of a thousand you wake up, you get out of bed, and you know exactly who and what you are. And let me tell you something-- that scared me more than anything else in the world."
He frowned at his mother's words. "Now who's the foolish one? What in the world could you have found out about yourself that would make you so damn depressed?"
"I realized that I was normal."
"I am ordinary. I was born just another girl, just another person, a daughter in a house with a family and a name. I, Motoko Minagawa, was an average person-- and that made me sadder than the day your father left me; sadder than the time my mother's good china platter broke; sadder, even, than when I found out my lovely, lovely Prince Charming had died. I guess... I guess I just wasn't special enough for him."
She took a moment to bring her gnarled fingers to her lips, kissing the tips gently and pressing them against the name on the stone she had the habit of visiting. Then, as if a cloud had passed, her expression became warmer, lighter; she stood up as straight as she could, shoulders braced and her right hand tight around her walking cane. She looked up into the sky and for reasons unknown to her son gave a short, airy sort of laugh. She turned to look at him.
"You know what? We're both pretty selfish, aren't we?"
His frown broke into a relieved smirk. "Even I could've told you that you old hag-- AUGH!"
She whacked him twice on both sides of his head.
"I may be selfish," she muttered, "but I am still a person and I am still your mother. Show me some goddamn respect before I knock that head of yours off of your shoulders for your wife to retrieve."
She gave him one final whack before starting off in the direction of her car, away from her Prince Charming's headstone.
Never had a person more proud walked out of that graveyard so elegantly.
Unbeknownst to her Ryota took a moment to smile beautifully at her retreating figure. For a moment Motoko got her wish; even if it was in the eyes of her thirty two year-old son, for just a moment she walked every bit like the Princess she had so longed to be.