Hey, why are you crying?


"Hey. Why are you crying, dummy?"

It's an innocent question- but it makes the young child gasp. Her face contorts comically in shock; eyes widening, head jerking upwards, hair fluttering round her flushed, tear-streaked face.

She moves so sharply and so suddenly, her limbs twitching, that she looks like some strange kind of insect; hardly human at all.

Obviously, she's used to being bullied and teased. That's why she reacts so violently.

That's why she nearly topples off the bed in shock.

That's why her large blue eyes dart about her tiny bedroom frantically, as though searching for a place to hide.

She's scared.

It's all useless, though. How could any small, puny human ever hope to hide from a witch?

Witches can break through all closed rooms, you know? Witches can do that. They can click their fingers, and in seconds they'll be golden butterflies or colorful candy that can slip through locks or under the cracks of doors.

It's easy, really- and lots of fun~ You should try it sometimes.

Oh… ho ho~ You probably can't, though.

Witches are privy to lots of pleasures humans could never even dream of. It's so sad. Maybe the witch will play with you another time, when you've learnt a few spells and you've stopped being so boring.

Lambdadelta sits on the human's bed, smiling proudly as though she owns the place; as though she's always been there. She doesn't apologize for breaking in. Witches don't apologize. They don't have to. The human should be thanking to the witch that she deigned to appear in front of her at all.

Lambda only giggles to herself; hugging her pink and white striped knees to her chest.

She looks smug, like a cat who has just caught a tasty pigeon.

Appearing out of bursts of kompeito candy and making humans jump is always so much fun, even after all these years~ It's a hobby she'll never tire of. Bern says it's because she's easily amused, but what does Bern know? Bern isn't very much fun.

Stupid Bern.

Poor, poor, stupid Bern.

Witches who get bored of life after one thousand years are all boooring, saaaaad, stuuupid people. If you're bored then you're boring, the witch wants to tell them. Get a grip. Stop being so depressing, Beeeern~ Do something fun! Grant some wishes! Torment some humans! Make their dreams come true! Make them laugh, make them cry, make them tremble in fear or smile so brightly they forget, momentarily, that misery even exists. Do all those things, and then you'll never be bored!

Bur Bern won't listen to her, of course. Bern thinks Lambda is an idiot.

Maybe she is.

Maybe she's an idiot for being so cheerful all the time- but it's better being cheerful than being unhappy, isn't it? Isn't it?

She's not wrong for being cheerful, right?

That's why she decided to visit that cute little human in her poky, tiny little bedroom.

Her surroundings aren't particularly grand. They're undignified; the small bed shoved in the corner, fighting for space with the wardrobe, and the ceiling is too low and the floorboards are all creaky and there's dust on the window sills, and stacks of mystery novels on the floor, and it looks like a Victorian poorhouse or something.

But she doesn't mind.

She's not here to enjoy fine architecture. She's more interested in the girl than her room.

Why is she crying?

She wants to know.

When humans cry, it means they're unhappy.

When humans are unhappy, it's usually because they want something they cannot have.

Sometimes humans are incapable of seizing these things they want- money, or friends, or family, or love… but nothing is impossible for a witch. Witches are born to grant miracles.

That's why Lambdadelta is there.

She wants to listen to this sad little girl… and decide whether her wish is worth granting.

So they start to talk.

The girl is shy at first- but when Lambda shows her a few simple displays of magic, and talks to her with a wide smile like they've always been friends, the girl soon begins to trust her.

When this sad, lonely, pathetic and oh-so-pitiful child opens up, and spills her little heart out to the kind witch-sama who wants to dry her tears, the witch… gets an idea.

This child isn't like the others.

She's crying, but who wouldn't cry after all she's been through? She's strong; her will is unshakable; and she wants, oh how badly she wants it, to force the hand of the heavens so she can be reunited with him.

She would do anything for love.

Absolutely anything.

She's a girl with too many personalities to fit in her own head, and her heart has been smashed multiple times so it's all broken and scarred and pieced back together with inexpert fingers- but she still hasn't given up.

She refuses to give up.

It… really is incredible.

A miracle.

Bern says miracles don't exist- but Lambda is sure that isn't true. After all, a miracle is sitting right in front of her.

This girl is a miracle.

Lambda likes that kind of resolve in a girl- and this human really is so sweet, and sad, that she wants to grant her wish. She'd feel cruel if she didn't.

I want him to remember me.

It may seem impossible… but the witch of certainty is on her side now.

Anything is possible with the cute and adorable Lady Lambdadelta's permission, you silly little thing, so dry those eyes and let's think up a plan to win back your one true love!~ Hehehe, oooh, I sound so cooool when I talk like that…~

Ahem.

I'll make you a witch. You can wear that beautiful dress Kinzo gave you. If you like, I'll grant you a pretty head of blonde hair, bright blue eyes- even huge boobs, just like his dream woman! Oh ho ho- he has good taste! I have blonde hair, too!~ Ignore the people who say blondes are dumb; I'm really smart, and so are you, because you know lots and lots about closed room murders! I'm sure, if you show him some really, reeeeeally good ones, he'll remember all the fun times you used to spend together reading mystery stories. He'll remember you- and you'll have lots of fun together, too.

Isn't that nice?

Hm… what, else, what else, what else?

Your laugh? Hm… You're a witch, and maybe an immature one- oh ho ho, you're far younger than me!- so maybe it'd be quite a loud, unrefined laugh? Gyahahaha? Something along those lines. You have a long, looong way to go until you're worthy of a cute laugh like me, oh ho ho!~

H-hey, don't glare at me! I'm not saying you're annoying or anything- but you are a kid compared to me, you know. Like, your life would be over in the blink of an eye, but mine goes on forever. And, don't you want to make his life miserable, just a little?

Hehe, I know you dooo~

That's why you need a high-pitched, cruel, mocking laugh~

You can tease that awful boy for forgetting about you, and hit him over the head with your pipe (you need a pipe, it's so elegant!), and pull his hair, and maybe lead him around on a chain like a dog…? No, it's not too cruel; think about how much he led you around, making promises he broke. He deserves a bit of punishment- but, underneath all that… you still really love him, don't you?

If you really love him… I'm sure he'll understand. It's just a test of love, okay? No matter how much you kick him about and abuse him or make him cry, he'll understand eventually.

He has to.

So, don't give up.

I'm making you a witch just for two days, okay? You've only suffered for six years- but your suffering was so great, it might as well have been one thousand. So you are Beatrice, the thousand year old witch.

The Golden Witch.

By the name of me, the great Lady Lambdadelta, I'll allow you to call yourself that. This is certain. I proclaim you are Beatrice with certainty.

Nobody can take that away from you except yourself.

This is 'you'.

The new you.

You don't have to lament your hopeless fate anymore, okay? You… don't have to cry alone ever again.

I promise.

Don't cry, Beato.

I'm going to make your wishes come true.


"Hey. Why are you crying?"

The witch bumps her fist lightly against her disciple's head.

This time, Beatrice doesn't flinch.

She can't.

She can't do anything.

Poor thing.

She really has given up, hasn't she? Her eyes, which were once so beautifully blue (blue like the sea, blue like the sky, blue like the sword she gave him so he could cut out her heart), are now cloudy and grey. She can't keep her own head upright. Instead, it hangs; heavy, like a paperweight. Her hair is loose from its usual bun, golden curls cascading over her shoulders. Her dress used to make her look proud and elegant, but now it looks too big for her, and too heavy; crushing her pale body and grinding the delicate bones to dust.

She's a wreck.

A joke.

A toy.

A doll.

She's not a witch.

She's not even a human.

She can't drink tea unless somebody holds the cup to her lips. She can't wipe her own mouth when the scalding liquid dribbles down her chin. Most humans would be embarrassed at being so dependant, so needy, so useless, and maybe she is, too- but it's difficult to say, because no emotion crosses her eyes.

She can hardly blink.

She can't move.

She's given up.

She's given up on him… and on herself, too.

Her love for him was the only thing that kept her heart beating- but she's lost all hope, now. Lady Lambdadelta frivolously made this child a witch just so she could grant her wish… but this child obviously wasn't as strong as she thought she was.

She's a failure.

The only thing that junked doll can do now is cry.

So she does.

Salty tears slowly dribble down her cheeks; dripping into the cup of tea sat on the table before her.

Hey… didn't you used to be a proud witch?

Didn't you?

Remember all the fun you had with him, forcing him to find the culprit of your murder mystery stories? Wasn't that so much fun? Didn't you love laughing at him; an inelegant cackle, sure, and it pissed him off… but sometimes he would return your laughter with small smiles; and other times he'd get so excited expounding on his closed room murder theories his eyes would start to shine, just like they did six years ago.

It was… just like six years ago for you, wasn't it?

It was like a dream.

You and Battler; having fun; squabbling like children; competing over the last of Ronove's cookies; challenging each other on the mystery genre.

You were having so much fun.

But… you couldn't forget, could you?

You're just wearing the skin of a witch. You're not a real magical girl; not like me, you're certainly not like me. You're just a poor, lonely pathetic maid who was driven insane by unrequited love… and murdered everybody on the island.

You can try and dress it up as a witch's doing all you like- but it's all a lie.

And you trusted him to tear through that lie.

You wanted him to see how pathetic you were really, behind your elegant dress and cruel smiles… so he could see how much you loved him.

But he didn't see.

He didn't kill you.

So you're trying to do it yourself.

Idiot.

Moron!

Couldn't you be happy, playing endless games with him for all eternity? You'd be with him forever. Why…

W-why do you have to be so stupid, Beato?

Why do you have to make yourself miserable?

Why would you make yourself a witch, just to have that guise torn away from you?

It's…

It's because of love, isn't it.

That love is a festering wound that never quite healed right.

Poor, poor girl.

You poor thing… …

You're so pathetic… that I could cry.

Lady Lambdadelta sniffs; wipes her fingers under her eyes to stem tears she's sure will start coming. Hahaha; she always gets too involved in these stories. When she watches movies, she shouts at the screen if the actors are acting stupid, or throws popcorn when she's angry, or cheers and kisses Bern on the cheek when the ending is happy. Bern sighs and says she's an idiot, easily amuses, but Lambda only giggles.

Lambda… likes happy endings.

But it doesn't look like this story will turn out that way.

There will be no cheering, no clapping, no squeals of joy or trying to steal quick kisses from a grumpy Bern, who likes to be 'modernist' and prefers despair to happily ever afters.

There will be none of that.

Because this child is already dead.

Lambdadelta trusted this child.

She tried to save this child.

She wanted this child to be happy.

But this child… has thrown it all away.

Hey, Lambdadelta wants to say. Crying doesn't solve anything. Pull yourself together. I thought you were through with waiting for your prince. I thought you were going to actively try and achieve your happy ending. I thought you were going to spend forever and ever by his side, teasing him, and taunting him, and playing with him- and maybe making him love you.

Don't you want to be happy? Don't you?

Why… … did you give up?

Why…?

You're… … making me sad, too.

I don't want to see my cute disciple like this.

Get up.

Stop crying.

Please, stop crying. You… look so pathetic right now I want to pour that cup of tea over your head; I want to shove pieces of hard boiled candy in your glassy eyes; I want to smash your head against the table so the bright red brains make a beautiful bloody river.

I'll tear your game apart.

You don't want it- so I'll break it. Is that what you want? For me to break it?

Stop crying.

Or you'll make me start doing it, too.

And crying doesn't solve anything.

It never will.