In the foggy realms of darkness, it heard an echoing cry. It had heard many before, more than ever could be imagined. The human race was such a sad, gloomy race, but nonetheless, it knew this particular cry all too well.

Knowing what it had to do, It quickly sprang into action, fixing the cry's location in its mind, and beginning its move.

Every human has cried, at least once in their life.

But some cries were always louder than the others.

The one's who needed it the most...

The cry for help...

-o-

Madotsuki was crying.

Her sleep had been fitful, filled with nightmares.

She awoke with tears in her eyes, and sobbed to herself quietly. The nightmares had brought up bad memories, memories she wished could be erased.

It had been almost a year ago when it happened, but it still hurt to think about it. How she wished she could turn back time...

Drying her tears, she decided to get up, figuring she wasn't going to get back to sleep anyway. She dragged herself into a sitting position on her bed, and slipped her feet into the slippers by her bedside.

Madotsuki was unfortunately plagued with a photographic memory, meaning she could recall, in exact detail, what her nightmares were about.

Letting the dream play through again, her eyes once again filled with tears.

"Why...why did this have to happen?" she whispers to herself.

After sitting for some time, Madotsuki decided she should try and eat something, and at the least, splash some water on her face to wash away her tears.

She stood up and made her way to the door. There, she felt that odd hesitancy, a sort of vulnerability taking hold, having to will herself to open the door.

Making her way down the hall, she recounted each and every exact picture and sculpture leading from her room, to the bathroom. Clay frog, odd tiki mask, wooden bird, portrait of a dark and misty forest, crude drawing Tsuki had done of her mother, and the final one, which gave her pause, a photograph of her and her parents.

Madotsuki's parents had passed away when she was 5 years old, having died in a house fire on the eve of her parent's anniversary. Some hooligan had gotten too drunk, and thinking it was a good idea, began to light off fireworks nearby. This started a small fire, which eventually became a huge blaze that had nearly consumed Tsuki's entire neighborhood.

Having done her morning pause over the picture, same one she did every time she left her room, she first made her way to the bathroom, the light flickering on.

In the glaring white light, Tsuki first took a look into the mirror. What she saw was the same face she saw every morning: A hollow, blank look, brown hair lying lank and tangled, eyes that had once been bright and full of life, now dull and listless. The only change to this morning was to add "red and puffy eyes" to the list.

Feeling the shock as the cold water splashed onto her face, Tsuki briefly wondered what would happen if one morning, she splashed her face, and instead of seeing her usual lost look, she could catch a fleeting glance of her old self, if ever so briefly.

Flicking the light off, Tsuki made her way to the kitchen, and fixed herself a bowl of cold cereal. Glancing at the fridge, she caught sight of a note on the fridge, and briefly stopped stirring her cereal around to read it.

"Short business trip. Won't be back until Thursday. Left some money for you in the usual place if the food runs out in the fridge. Please take care of yourself until then. Love, Your Uncle."

Tsuki lived with her uncle, and had done so ever since the fire had claimed her parents. Tsuki's uncle was her mother's brother, and the only family Tsuki had left.

After reading the note, Tsuki thought aloud about how she wished her uncle was around more. She knew her uncle loved her, and had done nothing but care for her, but due to the nature of his work, he was seldom at home, leaving Tsuki all by herself more often than not.

Her voice echoing uselessly through the hall, she suddenly felt heavy, the thought of being alone again somehow taking hold of her mind.

The thought of her uncle being gone and the recounting of her dream made her wish that she was still around...

Feeling that odd numb, empty feeling take hold, she no longer wanted the cereal.

She dumped the cereal in the sink, watching with mild interest as the disposal unit made short work of the soggy concoction, and ran the water to wash the bowl.

Having emptied and washed her dish, she made her way back to her room. Once again, that feeling of vulnerability took hold, prompting Tsuki to swiftly open her door, dash inside, and slam the door shut.

She stood there for a few minutes. After letting the feeling of safety take hold of her mind, she once again made her way to her bed. Instead of going back to sleep, she sat down next to the desk and pulled out a picture frame from the bottom drawer.

She knew she would regret it, but after the nightmare she had, she needed reassurance that the person in the picture was real.

She saw that same smile she knew and loved. She saw that long blonde ponytail that adorned her head. She saw the green sweater she had always worn, along with the knit skirt. She also saw herself, smiling along right beside her, both of them holding hands, and standing on the bridge that overlooked the nearby park.

Tsuki stared at the picture until her memories of that day began to play out in her mind, causing her to smile briefly. She was real. Her memories would not lie. Her brief smile soon faltered, the thoughts of what happened dragging her back to reality, and soon she was left feeling even more hollow and heavy than before.

Sighing, she gently placed the picture back into the drawer, and she laid her head down on the desk, not really wanting to do anything anymore.

She could feel herself drifting off once again, and she hoped that she would have a pleasant dream, for once. Before she finally slipped off, she muttered one word under her breath.

"Poniko..."

=0=

Author's Notes: Welcome welcome, to my next writing project, The Yume Nikki-based fanfic: "Help". Being my second fic, and being released alongside "Noland", it may be more sporatic than my still incomplete first fic, but nonetheless, I do hope you enjoy it. I also hope that no one is too bothered that I use the nickname "Tsuki" as a shorthand for Madotsuki, but if so, I can always change it. Please let me know in the reviews, as well as any other thoughts, critiques, or anything else. Another change is the chapters will be relatively shorter than Noland, which means I'll be able to dash off chapters quicker whenever I feel sudden inspiration. Anyhoo, enough of me rambling. So until next time, dear reader.