Two birds on a wire
"Muu… I guess, as the Golden Witch, it's a little sad when my services aren't needed anymore… But that's fine; it's fine! I can't let you Ushiromiyas get lazy, using my gold for aaaaall eternity~ I wonder if your children will be alright without my support, though? If they all flounder around in the dirt pathetically like their limbs have been hacked off that'll be pretty funny, too! Kikikikyaha- uu?~"
Beatrice winced, and made a funny squeaking sound, as Battler, her husband, lightly bopped her on the blonde head with his fist.
"B-battler! That's no way to treat a lady!"
"Lady, you say?" Smirking, Battler rapped his fist against her cranium once more; then took one of the golden curls that sproinged free from her elegant bun, and coiled it idly round one finger. His fingers brushed her cheeks gently, with the same softness of a rose petal landing like a rose petal fluttering on the surface of a lake. "That's funny. I don't see a lady here. I see a moody, sulky, mean-spirited wiii~iiitch, ihihihi~"
Two spots of pink appeared on Beato's cheeks. She was so flustered by Battler's gentle touch that his teasing comment almost flew over her head.
"H-hey! Show some more respect for your elders and betters! One thousand years is no match to your puny eighteen, you stupid huuuman! You better start treating me with the dignity I deserve- d-don't grin like that at me!"
Beatrice was a witch, after all, and he had to protect her pride. If she let lowly humans like that idiot Baaaattler tease her, then she'd never be taken seriously again! Aaah, that was no good; it was useless, absolutely useless!
But Battler didn't shrink back from her, or cower in fear. Instead, he only laughed, in a way that made Beato's heart flutter- almost as if there was a captive butterfly inside her ribcage.
"Oh? You want me to treat you like you're one thousand? Theeen, do you want me to get you a walking stick before your back breaks in two, oba-san?"
If Beatrice's cheeks were pink before, they were red now. Angrily, she punched Battler in the stomach- though without enough real force to cause any pain. If she wanted to, she could've turned him into a newt- but she would never do that! She was being the adult here; not tearing Battler apart limb from limb even though she really, reeeally wanted to.
Didn't she deserve a little praise for being so mature?
Battler was the stupid child here; it was all Battler!
"N-no, dummy! Idiot! You should get down on bended knee and praise my honourable name; kiss my shoes and- a-and… a-ah… …"
But Battler cut Beato off.
He did it by pressing his lips against her rose-red cheeks… and pulling her into a tight hug. Beato made a cute noise like a squeaky toy as Battler held her against his chest, which made him grin.
If he'd known before how easy it was to fluster Beato, the so-called 'great' Golden Witch, he would've tried this method out from the moment he met her. Beato might have acted like a regal lady, but she was surprisingly easier to embarrass, ihihi~
"There, see, great witch-sama?" said Battler, smiling warmly. "I kissed you~ Happy?"
Beatrice puffed out her cheeks like a squirrel storing nuts, turning her head away to hide her embarrassment.
"Oh? And whh~hhy not?"
"Because." Beatrice folded her arms; still sulking like a moody kid. "You didn't kiss me properly."
"Ahaha… Is that it? Well, you got so red from just a peck on the cheek; if I kissed you on the lips, your head might explode! I was just worr~ied~" a light prod on the tip of her nose with his index finger, "about your health~"
"H-hey, d-don't imagine I haven't been in romantic situations like this before, being a mature, beautiful, clever, much adored-"
"And incredibly cute, fun, kind of thick-headed and just a little childish great witch-sama?"
Beatrice glared- but a small smile was, slowly, spreading across her lips.
"Heh. And you were doing so well, praising my name, until the last bit. Maybe I'll have to punish you."
"Oh? And why's thaaaat? I've never known you to hesitate befoooore."
Battler laughed a little awkwardly- and then gestured towards Kinzo, who was sat on the couch, Genji, by his side, and Ange, who was standing by the window.
"That's because we have company, witch-sama… unless your thousand year old memory got a little confused and you forgot, ihihi."
Beatrice blinked in confusion. She'd been so enraptured in teasing, and being teased in return, that it had completely slipped her mind she was meant to be discussing matters of money with Kinzo.
She'd much rather be talking to Battleeeeer! B-but… she had a job to do!
Kinzo didn't seem to mind. Instead, he was laughing indulgently; a proud grandfather watching over the successful, happy relationship of his grandchild. Was there any greater joy for a grandparent?
"Ahaha, don't mind me, don't mind me! I think it's incredible a fool like Battler managed to get such an incredible woman, ahahaha! Truly, this is a real miracle; the luckiest spin of the roulette wheel I've ever seen! Ahahaha-"
"Master," said Genji, voice admonishing, "your later lacks dignity."
"Ahaha, is that so? I can't help but feel happy for my stupid grandkid, who unexpectedly got such a good ending! Ahahahaha!"
Beatrice shifted slightly, looking down at the floor- almost shyly.
Then… she reached forwards- and grabbed hold of one of Battler's ears.
And she twisted it roughly.
She twisted it so hard the tip of Battler's poor, abused ear became as red as his hair… and as red as Beato's face.
"Why didn't you remind me that the others were here, you idiiiiot! Now you've made me look stupid! I hate you, Ushiromiya Battler!"
The sound of Battler's begs for mercy and Kinzo's raucous laughter, filled the study- split by the sound of the rain pitter-pattering against the windowpanes, and Genji's soft sigh.
Ange, in the form of a six year old but with the heart of an adult, stared outside the rain-splattered glass moodily; looking down upon the tempest-tossed rose garden. The roses were trembling in the wind; crimson petals getting torn up and scattered by some giant invisible hand, and sent fluttering to an inaudible rondo through the night sky.
It was funny how fragile the human world was… and how easy it was for those frail roses to be rent into tatters and thrown away.
Those roses were beautiful- but they didn't stand a chance.
It was… a little like Ange's relationship with her big brother.
Ange… had only ever wanted to find the truth. She wanted to know. She hadto know. Throughout her miserable, lonely life- mocked by Eva and harassed by herds of girls at St. Lucia's- her ignorance over the truth of that day had eaten her up from the inside out; until it felt like bloated maggots were writhing inside of her, eating up every last scrap of happiness.
How did her fun aunts and uncles and cousins, die?
What about her parents?
What about… onii-chan… …?
Ange… wanted to know.
Her whole life was a nightmare. She was trapped inside a closed room of misery she would never escape- and no matter how hard she searched, she couldn't find the key. She couldn't find the truth.
Finally, her brother had given it to her. A cold chain that hung round her neck… attached to a heavy key with an intricate design.
Surely this would help her understand.
Then, she could break out her nightmare… and have a peaceful sleep.
An eternal sleep.
That was all she'd ever wanted.
But her big brother was a liar.
In the fourth game, hadn't he stood opposite Beatrice as an enemy? He had been trying to destroy her illusion so he could return home; back to the red-eyed, weeping little sister who missed her onii-chan.
Hadn't he been trying to drive mercilessly, icy blue stakes of truth into the witch's still-beating heart; tearing her illusion apart from inside out?
Where… had that resolve gone now?
Battler was talking to Beatrice in a friendly, familiar manner- as though they were married. Just like a high school boy with his girlfriend. They were flirtingwith each other. And he had left Ange by the window, to watch over the rose garden… and he had forgotten she was there.
Once upon a time, Battler onii-chan had loved her.
She wasn't so sure anymore.
Not when he looked into the eyes of that woman- that witch- who had toyed with him so cruelly before.
Ange saw only affection in his face.
She heard only happiness from his tongue.
The witch had, surely, with her dark magic, cast a horrible spell on her onii-chan… and now she would never get him back.
Battler said he wanted to expose the truth and return home… but that had been a lie. He was like a bird on a wire; unable to fly away from the side of the witch who chained him in place, no matter how he much he claimed he would.
His claims weren't worth anything if they weren't in red.
Ange wanted to find the truth.
The perfect, bloody, bright red truth of that vile, bloody, bright red murder.
She was not a bird on a wire.
She was a proud eagle… who was trying to fly away.
And she couldn't look back now.
I love you, onii-chan… but, when you're with her, you're not my onii-chan anymore. You're just another enemy hindering my way to the truth. I'm sorry, but that's just the way it is.
But, it's kind of sad… to think, in this messed-up world, even you would be my enemy. I was reduced to scrap meat for you, because I believed in you; because I loved you. But… what was that sacrifice worth to you? It was just another chance for you to sit around and bicker with that witch like a little kid.
I won't stand for it.
I'm going to let go of your hand.
You don't need me to hold it anymore.
And you're just holding me back.
a/n: So sad ep8 was fully translated… Now, Umineko is over ;A; It's so depressing ;A; What else do I have to look forward to in life? ;A;
Based on the song 'two birds on a wire' by Regina Spektor, which reminded me a lot of ep8 Ange. I had this fic idea for a while but the full translation of ep8 finally encouraged me to get off my behind and actually get it typed up XD