AN: I do not own Utena. De Papas does. If only I had more money, I would make a proof of concept vid and try to get a live TV show...
He cut into the casket with her soul sword and it wasn't enough. Her soul was stronger than any that he had ever seen and she lay cringing on the floor of the Dueling Arena, bloodied and betrayed and it wasn't enough. Her soul was noble. It should have been doing more than cutting the vines. Why wasn't the power coming? It didn't matter. He didn't notice her force her body up and come to the Gates of Night as he walked away.
Just a girl... just a girl... just a girl...
The illusions whispered and screamed and the swords circled away as a child looked into the first face she had truly seen in centuries. "Who are you?" the child asked.
"Impossible!" He shouted.
"Anthy... finally... finally we meet..." Utena's blood dripped down her uniform, down her bare legs, into her shoes, soaked up by her socks.
The soft marble finally gave under after all those years. The sending had vanished. The girl screamed her impotence at her failure.
His sister didn't have to see what came next.
He was actually doing paperwork for once when she came in, looking at him for something. He would never admit it, but he had indeed been caught unawares. She made her little pronouncement, left her glasses and Chu-Chu left his earing and tie. He had been aghast, yelling after her in panic. He saw her leave in a traveling suit.
It looked right smart, he would give her that.
That night, he had picked a number of student profiles. They would not be the Duelists, that would come much later. Did she not notice? Had she not noticed he did not feel the swords that would surely come his way if not for the Rose Bride? Did she think him a sending?
He reflected back on the Duel...
She screamed and sobbed. "She can't die, you know. The Rose Bride can never die. She will awaken tomorrow as both the child and the Bride you knew. She will be with you forever. Would you like that?"
She didn't answer and he came over and lifted her head to her. He kissed her, though she didn't kiss back. She didn't pull away either. She had fought and lost. She knew it would do no good to rail against him. "Draw my sword and live. Do not and bleed to death here. You don't want to die, do you? She will want to speak to you tomorrow."
The sword she drew was tarnished, the jewel chipped and the blade dull. It became new again in her grasp. It glowed in her hands. She was still weak and still bleeding. She clung to the Rose Sword as he picked her up. He walked onto the gondola and road it down, listening to her breath rale and burble. Internal bleeding in the lungs. "Your lungs are filling up with blood. The sword will take effect soon." He promised her. He didn't explain how it would activate; or what it would do once active.
He walked down out of the arena and watched it fall into rubble that disappeared before it could settle. He kissed away her bitter tears of loss and pain. There was only a hill now and there were stairs here. She was fading fast now. She fought against the encroaching darkness of death. Her ring was grey now. Her death would be soon if something didn't prevent it. He made a hushing sound as he took back his soul sword, now renewed. He felt it merge with him, giving him vitality. For a moment, the veil fell and she looked upon a grinning skeleton. "Mamiya renewed her. You will live... through me." He told her with a smile. Flesh filled out the skeleton, until he was as he had appeared.
The moan and weak sob was all he needed to hear. The Arena built itself differently and a divan appeared nearby. He placed her dying body on it. He had one more thing to do.
"Tell me how my daughter died. She was only gone a year and now she's gone!" The elegant woman in front of him was familiar. She would be going on her way soon after all the arrangements for Ohtori Kanae's body were arranged. The woman didn't need to know that the girl had been dead for months. Only he and Anthy knew the truth of her fate now.
"She died in childbirth, Ohtori-kun. I didn't want to tell you she disappeared on me a few months ago and hid that she was pregnant. I only found out now. The child is to be brought on the day of the funeral. There is no doubt of the parentage. The DNA tests are conclusive."
"Huh. I don't see you as a father."
"You will soon." It was a statement, not a promise. She recognized the hidden threat and backed off.
"I will see this child for myself when I bury mine." She was not aware that she would forget all about Kanae. All about the school. The husband would expire under her watch and she would be too busy doing battle with her psyche while Ohtori Akio planned around this child. He didn't state that he had rigged it so that it wasn't Kanae's DNA that was tested, it was another's-hers...
Utena wondered at her sending self. She was two places at once-on the bed of roses, dying forever yet never reaching death, and the hand of her illusionary body. It had taken her a full year to be able to concentrate through her death throes enough to form it. She couldn't remember how it was that happened. She remembered vaguely a prince saving her. Surely, he brought her here, though her memory wasn't too clear on it. There had been an accident, he had explained.
Yes, an accident.
He promised that this half-being between life and death would end someday. She felt a niggling feeling of distrust, but couldn't remember why. He had been right about so many other things... and all she had to do was play a role. Her sending self wasn't quite attached to her true self, but that would change with time, he promised.
The promises he made. She stared at the one in the little treadle bed. She was so tiny. "Who is that?" She asked. She couldn't remember. The pain had been her consciousness until a few days ago. It looked so much like him.
"She is to be our daughter."
She found herself confused. She could have sworn she was too young for that. "What will the name be?"
He held her close, smiling. It was a smile of victory and she wondered what battle or argument he had won this time. "The family name is Ohtori, but you may choose a name."
She tried to think, but nothing came to her. It was like everything in her head was fog. "She is... Yurika. I... my aunt... I think I had an aunt named Yurika. Yes, must be an aunt. She looked like a boy in class in middle school. I respected him. Souji... yes, Souji Mikage. Or did he look like him? Mikage means... beautiful darkness... maybe I will call her Miyumi instead..." She looked blank for a moment. "Yes. She is Miyumi. Something... something like a young man I knew once... I can't remember now..."
"Come Utena, we have a funeral to attend. Don't worry, you didn't know her. She was a student who looked up to me. She ate something that wasn't good for her, I'm afraid." He smiled darkly at his little pun. "Go ahead to the tower; I shall follow you shortly."
The mental contests to come would be interesting, he knew. The shade would be highly contested, he also knew. She walked to the tower without him to rest. The shell needed what an ordinary body did, he had told her. He came to the Forbidden Forest and walked to the divan, where Utena was writhing in agony. "Anthy will come sooner or later." He told her. "Perhaps she will free you."
She spat blood at him. He traced the inside of her leg and she slapped his hand away. It wouldn't save her from him, he thought. This time would be to put her into stasis so she couldn't interfere with the shell. She would be reliving her failure again and again.
It wasn't his usual style, but manipulation sure was.
He thought about the decades it would take to get another lined up to renew his youth. This time, the sacrifice, the Victor, would die. He didn't mind the years. He still had plenty of time and his sword still fed off her purity while she lived. He had made sure it was sealed within the shell, the sending this time.
He had eternity in his hands at last... Revolution indeed.