A/N: First Higurashi fanfiction. Hope you like it.
The day passes by too long, and I grow tired of the hot sun. It's my seventieth world. I already know what is going to happen; Kei-chan will arrive for the first tine tomorrow. Rena will show him around town. Shion will trade places with Mion to explore around for the first time in ages. Without doubt, one will commit murder. And I will die. As this always happens.
Who will go insane? I ponder this while walking home with Satoko. She rambles in a conversation I know by heart. I keep up with appropriate replies.
Will I have to start in a new world? Hanyuu floats by me, silent as she waits for Satoko to go to her uncle's. He's alive this year. Will Kei-chan kill him?
Satoko departed with a false smile.
Hanyuu spoke. "What will we do? We can stop—"
I stare dully into the sky. This conversation is also always the same. I let her finish as I count the birds flying. One, Two… Five. Always five. They're pretty enough, white and peaceful. But that means nothing. Regardless, people will die.
"Rika, what should we do?"
My answer is monotone.
My horns made me a demon; made me alone; made my sacrifice. Yet she was born, the seventh Furude daughter in a row. She sees me, and not my horns. Satoko doesn't see me at all, even as I talk to her. I pretend she does, and that we have lovely conversations. She likes to talk about many things, things that Rika has grew bored of over the years.
Home is close, and I see Rika thinking, hardly paying any attention as Satoko changes the topic. The blonde speculates what type of person has moved into the new house. I want to tell her about Keiichi, and how she'll be reminded of her brother and the games they'll play. Satoko goes silent, letting the stillness sink in. Rika doesn't seem to notice. I can't blame her; this is our seventy-sixth world.
I want to tell her that everything will be ok. That she won't die this time, but that would be a lie. She always dies. Everyone.
Who can I prey to when I am the god and yet also the feared demon?
The birds flutter by, and I count. It's been a habit.
"Eight," says Satoko, causing Rika to look up. "Look, Rika, they're all white. Aren't they pretty?"
I can see she wants to say yes, but that means hope.
With that far out gaze, I wonder what she thinks of. Sometimes, I think she doesn't notice me looking at her, too caught up in her own thoughts. But what makes a kid think like she does? Now and then, she looks as if she seen forever but never reached the end. When things go wrong, her voice changes, but I pretend not to remember it. I always do.
She gets angry at times, yet hardly at me. She nice and uses her influence for me. She gives me medicine. It stings, though it makes Hinamizawa better. I see the people as kinder, and my sorrow for Nii-nii weakens.
We walk along the path to our homes. I talk of normal things: the new house that a boy moved into and if Rena would bring anything adorable to school the next day. She gives me the same inattentive responses. Has it always been like this? I know Rika loves me. Sometimes she smiles and laughs. Sometimes I don't think she can see me. So I carry on, like always. She'll snap out of. She'll smile again. I just know it.
Birds flutter in front of us, and I count them. "Look, eight of them! They're all white. Aren't they pretty?"
Rika looks amazed and happy, and she truly smiles. That's the Rika I know. I hold her hand.
Please don't leave me again.