Clair de Lune

an anti-fairy tale showing the dark side of light.

i. All The World's A Stage

I once had a sister. She had shiny ebony hair as deep and as alluring as the dark, nebulous sky at midnight. Her hair was always pulled back from her softly sharp face, showing deep beryl eyes that lit up like the stars in the sky every time she laughed. She was tall, thin and everything else that counted if you wanted to be 'beautiful.' She was intelligent and talented, as well, being a violin prodigy.

She was perfect.

I, on the other hand, am the opposite of perfection. I don't play the violin (or any musical instrument, for that matter) like my sister. My hair is stingy and dull with split ends and my eyes are a dull plastic blue color. I am not as pretty as my sister, and to everyone else, I am nothing but her clingy shadow; her stupid younger sister who praises the great Yuuka Mikazuki like some goddess and aspires to be her.

I guess you could say I was – and am – jealous of her. She was seated on such a high pedestal, while I can't even hold the lowest rung on the ladder of beauty and perfection.

And I guess you could say everyone prefers nee-san. I have had some 'friends' who just talked to me to get to know THE Yuuka Mikazuki. Yes, her name has a 'the.' These so-called 'friends' of mine didn't even know what the hell my name was. To them, I was just Aki or Ayaka or Ayane or Arashi.

But such petty rivalries are things of the past. I, Ayame Mikazuki, have more important things to think about, because it's hard to talk about your sister while being so close to her grave.

I always visited her grave every day before I went to school. It was a ritual of sorts, me sitting there talking to a cold slab of stone, murmuring about how much I hated that I loved her. Sometimes, my parents would join me and we'd all pretend to be a loving family again. But we all knew that it was all just an act—a false thread of hope we were all trying to hold on to.

After Yuuka-nee-san's unfortunate car accident (…was it truly an accident? We would never know), our family started falling apart. Mom wept every minute of every day, Dad was always at work.

But one thing remained the same: the forgotten sister remained alone.

"Nee-san," I whispered, hoping that the wind would carry my silent message to whatever heaven she was in—of course, girls like her always went to heaven. I needed no words, just raw emotion. I knew she would understand whatever I said, or wanted to say.

And then, giggles shattered the comforting silence – no, more like the lack of noise. I whipped my head around, hoping (or not) to see more of nee-san's fans. There was nothing except the coldly bitter wind slashing everything around it.

Sighing, I reluctantly turned around to face her grave once more.

"Shh! She'll hear us, Kaho-chan!" A telltale male voice attempted to say, but his words broke into fits of loud, boisterous laughter.


What the hell was he doing here? And with Hino? What, was my sister's grave their rendezvous point?

"Oh, Kami. She heard us." Hino said quietly, but loud enough for me to hear her.

"Why did you drag me here?" Another voice asked, in an extremely irked tone. Tsukimori.

Honestly, did the girl bring all of her boyfriends down to Yuuka Mikazuki's grave? Did she think it was cool to kiss in the cemetery?

I have to say, it was rude.

"Why did you allow yourself to be dragged?" A green-haired head peeped from the snow-covered bushes. Tsuchiura.

"…What exactly are you doing here?" I called out, poison dripping from every word. I hated my sister, but she was still family, and I hated her a lot less than people who were…eavesdropping on me. This was a private thing!

Three other heads popped out of more bushes, snow covering their hair. Guilty as charged, all of them were.

"We didn't plan on spying on you, Mika-chan." Hino gave me an apologetic smile. I glared at her intensely, and she recoiled, "I mean—it's not like we were spying on you…"

"Amou." The single word that escaped a certain blue-haired violinist's name instantly explained everything.

Nami Amou became my 'best friend' in the third grade, when she sneaked into one of nee-san's concerts. She began snapping pictures backstage and I had to reprimand her myself because the great Yuuka Mikazuki thought it was cute. From there sprung a friendship between the journalist and the shadow. And ever since, she paid people to spy on me because she said 'it was rude' if she dug dirt on me herself.

…As if seeing these people wasn't rude right now.

"Tsukimori-kun!" Hino hissed, or attempted to hiss, anyway (because no one could really out-hiss the resident ice cube of Seisou), "Amou-chan told us not to tell!"

"You can't blame him, Hino," Tsuchiura began, "He can't help feeling honest because his idol is dead."

Tsukimori looked like he wanted to kill Tsuchiura (but then again, he always looked like he wanted to murder everyone) but then bottled up his emotions and became his usual brooding self, "We'll be late for school," he muttered as he started walking away.

Cue for Hino to run to him.

"Wait for me, Tsukimori-kun!"

I followed the happy friends group quietly, as I bade goodbye to the sister I loved to hate and I hated to love.

"I am sorry for your loss," a random first-year told me. It was the 35th (or so) time someone gave me their apologies. Even if my sister died a month ago, people still didn't stop.

…Couldn't they see that I didn't really care about their apologies?

No, they didn't.

"I'm so sorry, Mikazuki-san." Even teachers apologized…even those that didn't teach my sister when she was still studying here. I forced a smile at all of them and trod to the classroom.

I was late. For most of my classes. I seemed to be losing track of time. Or maybe time lost track of me. I didn't know anymore.

But the teachers didn't care. At least, Kanazawa-sensei didn't.

As I slid into my chair, I opened my notebook and started taking down notes. Music class at Seisou was mandatory, even if I wasn't a Music Student.

"And that's B flat…."

"Psst, Akira!" A paper ball hit my head. I opened it and read its contents, not bothering to know which loser had thrown it to me this time.

'It should have been you in that freakin' car.'

…Ah, such a lovely note. This guy is definitely inviting me to the Valentine's Dance. I folded it neatly and shoved it into my bag. Amou would get a hoot out of it.

With a smug smile on my usually stoic face, I continued penning Kanazawa-sensei's poor excuse of a lecture.


…It was a very bad idea to have shown Amou the note.

"I don't think they meant it." I replied, no emotion whatsoever in my sharp voice. Of course, it was a lie.

I lied often.

"Amou-san, this is a library, please do keep quiet." The red-haired Orchestra manager, Ousaki-senpai, told my agitated friend ever so calmly.

"Someone sent her a death threat!" She shrieked, and everyone's gaze fell on me. Great.

"I always get death threats from pathetic losers." I told her matter-of-factly. This time, what I had said was a truth. People did wish that I should have been in the car instead of my perfect sister.

"Perhaps you should see our guidance councilor," Ousaki-senpai told me gently, as if I was some sort of freak of nature. Maybe I was, but I wasn't stupid.

"She's fine, senpai," Amou (who seemed calmer now) assured him, patting his back, "You should go back to your papers…"

Apparently, Ousaki-senpai wasn't stupid as well. He knew when to exit on time.