Title: Time, Such Clumsy Time
Series: Nana
Character/Pairing: light sort of Nana/Hachi that's sorta gen, implied other canon pairings
Rating: PG-13
A/N: coment_fic: Nana/Hachi, fireflies. Also vague implication of a crossover with XXXholic, but it's of the blink-and-you'll-miss-it-variety. Spoilers, possibly verging on AU. The title comes from For Me This Is Heaven by Jimmy Eat World.

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Nee, Nana....once a fortune teller told me... 'fireflies are the souls of people we've lost in this lifetime and others'. In a way she reminded me of you. There was that same– that same dangerous aura. That knowing of the world. Funny, I never thought about it until now.

The last show of the night is over and her throat aches from singing. She likes this lingering pain, the kind that comes from knowing that she sang her fucking lungs out. There's no pleasure like it in the world. Not sex or alcohol or drugs can get close to this high. The back of the club opens up to a dark sandlot. Dirty and rough, a wasteland. Scrubby grass grows at the pack, right next to that better kept club with the koi pond and the Japanese aesthetic. It's the dregs right next to paradise.

She lights another cigarette and flicks the ashes away as they come. She doesn't think of much of anything because she's learned that remembering just brings back the hurt, like reopening a wound. Lemon juice and water her boss said. Quit the pack a day or you'll ruin your voice.

The blonde wig feels scratchy. With nothing but the faint lights, she pulls it off and lets her shaved head be free to the night air. That was the first thing she did after the funeral, cut her hair. She looked just like fucking Yasu. They could've been twins, save for her lack of shades and breasts.

Even if she tries not to think it all comes back to her, like a bad habit she just can't quit. She remembers another time and life, the innocence was thick even then. She'd once thought herself jaded. She didn't know the meaning of the word back then. It was something she wore, like big, black boots that all the sceners wanted to copy.

Other lights other than her cigarette light the night. Little nostalgic bugs all flying their lives away. Transience, wasn't it? Well they seemed happy enough. It's getting late for summer. The nights are growing cold. Soon all these lights will be extinguished for another year.

Nee, Nana. Do you think we'll meet these people again? Maybe they'll following...waiting for us.

"Excuse me," a faltering, yet chipper voice says in accented English. "I'm lost. Do you know the way to the Riga Grande Hotel?"

She breathes out smoke, it flows like incense, all bitter and sweet.

"Down the street to the left. You'll tell it by the red pillars."

"Thank you!" the voice says brightly. A passing car lights the night and for that frame of time, they stare back at each other. Hachi in shock, her with the same composure she always keeps. Stage faces wear well in the real world.

But then, she'd already recognized the voice. Hachi never could take directions well. Without some image to focus on, yellow potted geraniums in the windows or red pillars, she would never find her way.

The face that regards her has aged. There are lines on her forehead, there is a wearied look before the effervescence comes. So she's learned as well how cruel life can be.

"It's been a long time, Hachi," she says. A smile slips out, despite herself, her resolve. Almost surprising, she'd almost forgot how.

Tears well up in Hachi's eyes. Through all this time, she hasn't changed all that much after all. She plows into her, buries her face in her chest and bawls. She can make out words through the sobs – I m-missed y-ou. I d-didn't know where you were. I missed you. I missed you.

She strokes Hachi's hair and lets her cry. Cry for me too, she thinks. cry for us all.

Nee, Nana. If we become fireflies, I hope I find you again. And then we'll keep living again, just like this. I hope we do...