The first time she sees snow, she lets out a whoop of delight and runs out barefoot. It's powdery; it's soft; and it crunches under her feet, sending tingles up her legs. The sun is peeking out and casts a soft glow on the inhabitants of Montpellier. She takes in another deep breath of that fresh air. It feels like the chill of peppermint on her tongue. Winter on Earth is everything she'd thought it would be and more.
"Aelita!" she hears a shout, vague in a distance, like something's trying to penetrate the sanctity that is her wonderland. "Aelita!"
She turns around and sees Jeremie waving frantically.
"Your forgot your gloves!"
Ten minutes later, Aelita comments that she can't feel her feet, and Jeremie starts panicking.
Her hand is on the wheel, and her hair's blowing like fine silk in the breeze, and she's got the coolest car in the world, and—
"Hey, Jeremie." she tries for nonchalant. "'Sup?"
"'Sup?" he turns red and looks like he's about to blow up. "'Sup? Do you know how dangerous this is? You could've died!"
"Calm down. I know how to drive."
"That's the not the point. You're inexperienced, and you've just barely got to Earth. I won't have this and—"
She leans forward and pecks him on the lips, enjoying the patchwork of peach and red on his cheeks. "Odd's been practising with me. But I'd much rather have you."
She's spent ages working on this. She's asked Yumi how to set tables (forks on the left, napkin folded on the middle of the plate, knives on the right, glasses on the top right), Odd how to pick out music (soothing, not too loud, with just a tinge of I love having sex with you and Let's make out passionately), Ulrich how to act cool (take polite interest, but fold your hands, keep your nose tilted up), and even Sissi how to set an ambience (cream roses blushed in coral in a crystallised vase, exactly two candles, no unnatural light), but she's not prepared for this.
He holds the necklace out to her, his hands shaking, mouth open, the jewellery moving along to the rhythm of his hands, catching and reflecting the flames of the candles. "Happy Anniversary?"
She can't help herself. It rushes out before she can even attempt to filter herself. "I love you."
Every year, every 1 January, while teenagers and young adults are surely partying, living out the first chapters of their lives watching in awe as fireworks explode in a flash of glitter and noise across a starry winter night, she visits a plot of land overgrown with ivy and dead weeds. The plants curl themselves around a single stone in the plot, and the moon shines almost secretly, shyly through the trees above. She's not scared though. She steps towards the stone, the weathered piece of rock that guards all that is left of him.
"Jeremie," she whispers, clutching at a small bag in her hands—hands that are wrinkled with age, love, and passion, gnarled with hard work, children, and adventures around the world—and takes a small batch of photos out.
"I've brought these for you," she says and pauses. "I miss you so much. I miss you, Yumi, Odd, Ulrich, and Sissi so, so much."
She lies down next to him, all that is left of him anyway because she must suffer the burden of being the youngest and the last, and as she drifts off, she hopes she doesn't wake up.
There's a first time for everything. At least that's what she tries to tell herself. She puckers her lips at the mirror, arranging herself in different positions so she can see what's flattering and what's not. What she sees is bright green eyes, long eyelashes that curl just so, a cat-eye as good as Sissi could've done, warm cheeks, and a brilliant, devastating smile. She's even dressed to kill, with the tallest heels in her closet, and a black number that slinks and wraps around like a second skin.
The nervousness eats at her and every cell in her body is telling her to stop, but she walks to the bathroom anyway. A few minutes later, a door slams, someone yells to ask if anyone is home, and footsteps starting pounding on the stairs. She quickly slips into the closet and just as he's about to step into the shower, she peeks out with heavy eyes and a secretive smile.
"Welcome home, honey," she purrs. "Have a nice day?"
notes: I am stuck in a bit of a writer's block, and every story that I try to start "casually" ends up turning into a mess that's near and dear to my heart. So, I've turned to drabbles because I want to improve on the brevity of my work, and so many of the wonderful authors in this fandom also have drabble collections so I figure these won't kill me. Though tese aren't technically drabbles since by definition they're 100 words, I'm too chicken to attempt those at the moment. I'm using a few prompts I found on LiveJournal (through the judicious use of Google), though there aren't many I want to do, so if you guys have any prompts, I'm all ears.
another note: Sissi as part of the group is a headcanon of mine. It'll most likely be smashed to smithereens what with CLE coming soon, but I adore Sissi.