A Garden of No Thorns
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In a less visited portion of the city, a garden blooms. Those who have walked by in the past would see a familiar site. A woman with dark blue hair and an eyepatch moved from one part of the garden to another, past flowers and trees, to water and tend to the various plants. It seems she's recently begun working on growing various fruits. After a few minutes of work, she steps onto the gardens brick path, following it to the center and resting on a bench under the shade of a tree.
Have I gotten lazy with describing the garden? Probably.
A young man happens to stroll through the garden when he catches sight of the blooming flowers. He slows his pace and begins to take in the aromatic breeze filled with falling petals from various plants.
"It's been far too long since I've seen such lovely flowers... must have taken an awful lot of work."
With little else to do for the time, a young, blonde girl decides to explore the city, with little more than the clothes on her back, she wanders into the garden. Noticing a pair who seem to be in conversation, the girl decides it might be best not to disturb them. Instead, she kneels near the edge of the garden to inspect some of the flowers
Seeing the unexpected new visitors, Saeko rose to greet them with a nod and a bow.
"It has certainly taken quite a bit of time to get where it is here. I do not mind it, but it does take quite a lot of effort to do this kind of work on ones own."
A woman with lavender hair in an elaborate ponytail and a naginata strapped across her back walks into the garden and spots Rasa, who has taken the nickname "Nanashi" since they last met. Rosie also spots the traveling spiritualist Makoto, credited with saving her client's soul from vanishing. She waves to Rasa, quietly introduces herself to Saeko, and approaches Makoto.
"Excuse me," says Rosie. "Are you Makoto Fukami?"
OOC: Hey Makoto, check your Phansite inbox. I asked for your opinion on something while you were away.
The young girl waves back to Rosie, not wanting to seem impolite. The young girl remains near the edge of the garden, taking a deep breath as she looks back up to Saeko
â€So you donâ€™t have anyone to help you out? That seems a little... Sad. Are you usually the only one around?â€
(edited by Rasa)
"Sad? I suppose so, though I do not mind much. I am used to be alone, after all. This place does not get many new faces. It is not in the best of conditions outside of this garden, after all. Though I still choose to stay here most of my time, only visiting the main city to purchase things I need, and occasionally sell some of what I grow."
The young girl stands up, careful to go around the flowers and walk down the garden path, a spring in her step as she glances at the buildings to the side â€œI guess not. Definitely could look better. Must give a lot of privacy.â€ The girl makes it near the garden center, leaning on the tree Saeko takes shade under and looks into its branches â€œWould you mind if I came to visit a bit more? Now that Iâ€™ve gotten here I could probably find it again.â€
Seeing as how Makoto's preoccupied, Rosie walks over to Rasa.
"Hi there," she says. "I tried going to your lemonade stand the other day, but you weren't there."
Makoto snaps free from his daze upon being brushed along the nose with a falling leaf.
"Who called for me? Is there an issue?"
Makoto looks about the garden in minor confusion.
While waiting for Rasa to respond, she turns back to Makoto.
"Sorry about that," she says. "My name's Rosie. I, um, have a few questions. Do you mind?"
Makoto's resting face seems to be overwhelmed with an air of annoyance.
"That all depends on what these questions entail."
Makoto fiddles with something in his pocket.
"Hmph, no... no it's quite alright. What do you wish to ask?"
The young girl turns to face Rosie and Makoto, nervously scratching the back of her headâ€I.. Didnâ€™t realize the stand had my name on it. Kinda thought people would just ignore the little thing.â€
Saeko awkwardly shifts while pondering the young girls words. "There is nothing wrong with company returning more often, I suppose... I am just a bit unused to it is all."
The girl breathes a sigh of relief, before winking at Saeko and giggling, apparently at herself "Well, guess you'd better get used to it then. Gotta be better than sitting here alone all the time." The girl cheerfully hops off the side of the tree to sit down next to Saeko, grinning widely at the older woman
A young girl wanders into the area, there's a wary look on face as she enters. Head darting around like someone expecting an attack, up until she spots the blue haired woman and waves with a grin on her face. One might also note the small plastic container in her hands, holding... Cookies.
"Ah hello Saeko-san, it's been a while since we last spoke hasn't it? Um, hopefully you remember me. And how do you feel about sweets? I've got cookies, I made them my self actually!"
She'd then glance at the fruits, still just starting to grow but hey, maybe Homura could buy some of those if they turn out well?
"Looks like things have been coming along here too, I'm glad to see that somebody's turning this rundown mess into something good. Nice to see ya know?"
Having continued tending to the garden after the others left, because yes they left and it's totally not my fault for forgetting to respond, Saeko was a bit surprised to hear anyone's voice, especially not a familiar one. Looking up for her plants, she gave a small, gentle smile to a returning friend.
"Hello, Miss Akemi. I am glad to see you appreciate the gardens growth. I rather like sweets, but I have not had them for quite a while. I never really got to have them very often."
The girl would hold out the container, several chocolate chip cookies held within. Assuming the woman took it, she'd smile over at the woman, though her own grin is far wider than Saeko's.
"Geez, no need to call me Miss Akemi or something! I'm way younger than you, after all, being so formal's a bit strange don't you think?"
She'd tilt her head curiously, glancing over toward an abandoned building now and then... Well, there's time to deal with it later, right? For the moment she'd shake her head, looking back toward Saeko.
"Anyway, anything been going on with you lately? I've actually opened up a bit of a place myself... A cafe to be exact, you should come by sometime! On the house, at least once!"
The strange pale child would wander down the street seemingly in a random direction as usual. They always seemed to repeat this process as if not caring where they were going as long as they would reach somewhere they've never been.
Their skin was pale as well as their hair but their eyes would glow with a bright light. Any who stared too deeply into the child's eyes would feel a strange sense of awareness for their surroundings but the sensation would be almost unoticable. Aside from that the child wore mostly gray plain looking clothes and would stare forward as if unsure how to react to what was around them.
Eventually they'd reach the garden and look towards the plants. They would not be admiring the plants out of a sense of respect for nature but more as if they were witnessing something alien and new within the garden for the first time. They would stand there silently, unaware of anyone else's presence for the moment.
"I apologize, formality has always just come naturally to me, however I will try to refrain and refer to you as Homura more often if you would prefer it. I would love to try one of them, but unless you have water on hand, I am not sure. Working in a garden causes ones hands to end up quite filthy, and I would hate to touch one at the moment." Saeko brings up and glances at her hands, outside of their gloves for a rare occasion, and caked in dirt.
"Though it is quite impressive to hear someone of your age has begun running such a place. I hope the you have been handling the challenges of managing the cafe well? The next time I visit the main city I will have to keep my eye out for that offer."
Though saying nothing, Saeko's attention would briefly be pulled to glance at the pale child.
Homura would sigh... Well, she does have some water on hand. But uh not in her normal storage.
"Uh, yeah... Well, I guess you were bound to see something someday if I hung around enough, nothing to get excited over."
After a moment of focusing, a glow emits from a small ring on the girl's right hand. A small metal buckler would take shape on her left wrist, It glows for a bit before a bottle of water appears in her hands and she offers it to the woman. Homura would then dismiss the shield, glossing over it and grinning.
"As for dealing with things, it's been going fairly well yeah. Despite my rather young age, I've gotten people to take me seriously. Hand making everything's kind of a pain, but it's worth it!"
She would then glance over at the strange boy, unlike Saeko Homura's far more willing to greet such people. Even though she's almost sure he isn't human, she'd wave and walk a bit closer.
"Ah hello there, are you a fan of nature or something!? I'm Homura Akemi, and it's nice to meet you."
The child would seem to almost not even acknowledge Homura for a moment as he wouldn't pull his eyes away from the plant in front of him. Seemingly out of nowhere he'd look up as if he's been listening all along.
He would stare at her for a moment as if trying to register if the noise she just made was actually speech. Finally he'd respond, his tone was very plain and he seemed to have an accent of sorts but not like any that would be found on earth. He pronounced words without seeming to understand the meaning behind their spelling and only how they actually looked.
"Nature? Is nature what this is? Nature is very strange, it's very green and soft. I believe it to be alive in the same sense that humans are alive but maybe not in the same way. They don't use speech or move. Very unusual...
Oh, yes. You presented me with a way to identify you. I learned of this, I must present you with my own identification. I am called Prometheus by some but that was a name only given to me before. I have no need for such a thing as a name for I am only a vessel."
Saeko's eye opens a bit wider at Homura's magic, but otherwise hardly seems fazed. "I partially wish such things could still surprise me, but in the world we currently live, it has become far too common. Still, thank you." She took the bottle and poured a bit out to wash her hands, before gently taking a cookie from earlier.
After glancing to the child as he speaks, Saeko seems almost uncomfortable, confused at his strange pattern of speech, yet still responds to the best of her ability.
"Yes, these plants are alive, though they do not live the same way we have grown to..." Saeko looks down and to the side after a brief pause. "...Sorry, I am not one who could explain such things easily."
The girl would simply stare at him, looking entirely curious as she examines the strange and inhuman child in front of her. After that, she'd clear her throat and begin to speak in a rather awkward voice.
"I see... No, plants don't speak or even move. they're living beings in some sense, they can die, they need nutrients... But they don't think, not like people or any other animals."
She'd then place a hand on her chin upon hearing the name, that's... Greek myth maybe? She's no expert in these things, but she thinks he has something to do with fire.
"A vessel huh? What are you a vessel for then, does it have with fire or light maybe? The name would lend me to guess that if Prometheus is who I'm thinking of anyways."
She'd then glance away from Saeko., a grimace crossing the girl's face as she looks over to that same building she'd been eying.
"I used to be surprised by that stuff when I first got here... It all seemed like too much, nobody keeping everyone from finding out. But nobody really cares for the most part."
Homura sighs, shaking her head a bit as she returns her eyes to the woman.
"Despite all the madness, most people are content to live normal lives. Leaving those who won't or just can't ignore it to clean up the messes, not so different from my home when I look at it like that."
The child would seem to look back down at the plant and stare deeply at it. Their eyes almost seemed like they'd burn a hole in the leaves with how intense the light would become for a moment but it would shortly begin to dim back down again as the child looks up once more.
"I see, so nature and plants are the same and they require nutrients in the same way other entities do but cannot think or act freely. How unfortunate that they do not posses sentience. Perhaps it is my role to provide them with free thought. Yes, I believe I shall begin that process shortly. The light would be most pleased with it and as their vessel I must spread their influence whenever I can."
The child's eyes would begin to glow once more as the light became brighter and brighter. They would continue looking at the nearby plant they had been focusing on as the light seemed to begin sticking to it.
The woman takes a bite of the cookie but seeming lost in thought, the flavor is all but completely lost on her. "When thinking about those who mostly populate this world, it makes me wonder just where I sit in this new home of mine. It feels as though there is too great of a gap between me and others I meet here, and not always in physical ability alone..."
At the child mentioning giving the plants sentience, Saeko's pondering kicked into overdrive as she wondered if such a thing as truly a good idea, though she doesn't voice her concerns, perhaps it is not something for her to decide. Perhaps he is just a kid playing anyway. Can never be too sure either way though...
Hmm, a gap between her and the people she meets? Homura doesn't quite get that feeling, but she's always been reasonably good with people...
"I can't say anything about that Saeko, but um I don't think that way about you? We haven't spoken a lot or anything, but I wouldn't quite say that I think there's some huge gap?"
She isn't entirely sure what the woman means though, smart or not Homura's still a kid after all... As for giving plants the power of thought, she'd simply stare at Meian for a moment before speaking in a hurried voice.
"Wait what!? No, don't do that! Trust me on this one, giving things that can't think the power to do so out of the blue can only end badly! Would they even want it? We can't know the answer to that, but they're not suffering as they are or anything so let's just leave it be please!"
The child would finally close their eyes before seeming to grow dizzy. For once, as they opened their eyes, they would almost be completely absent of light showing that one was actually white while the other was black, a detail that would've been impossible to see otherwise. Suddenly their eyes would begin glowing brightly again and they'd turn away from the plant.
Their voice would almost sound a little strained as they spoke as if they had exerted themselves in the process.
"Too much, I can't do it without the light's help yet. One day perhaps, but it just feels...wrong."
The child would seem to realize what they said and immediately would seem to wake from their stupor.
"No, nevermind, it's nothing. As I said before I am simply a vessel and thus am simply empty without the light's full embrace.
As for your concerns with granting sentience without consent, that's unfounded. For me to not try and fill that task would be against the wishes of the light and I am nothing without the light. To enlighten all being within this world and give them the power of thought, that is how the world will truly be liberated.
Of course, I apologize, I shouldn't expect those who only take on physical form to understand."
Homura's words went nearly completely over Saeko's head as she steps back a bit and turns away from the kid. She decided to stay silent. This could be the chance to explain what she meant. Saeko felt a gap between her and the others she met still, because though she had grown to understand what they could do was supernatural to her, their actions and thoughts still seemed beyond her. Though she chose to say nothing, she was visibly growing more uncomfortable and perhaps even a bit fearful of being near this 'Prometheus' kid.
Give sentience to everything? Wonderful, yet another issue to deal with. Something about this light rubs her the wrong way, mostly because that ideal is utterly insane and allowing it to happen would likely unleash madness.
"I see. Well, I'll say this, your light seems a bit insane from where I'm standing. Giving every being the power of thought isn't going to make things better, there's a reason the world is how it is and trying to change that balance for no reason? It's insane, but that's just my thought on the matter."
She sighs, another problem in the long run but that's nothing new. Besides, maybe this "light" is a living being in its own right, perhaps reasoning with it isn't out of the question? Geez, this kid's thoughts... Alien is the only word for it.
"Hmm, I think I might see what you meant Saeko? Try not to let it get to you, beings that aren't human tend to be... Well not like a human. But I should head out, for now, things to do and all that!"
She would walk off, not heading the way she had come from but rather toward the building she's been glancing toward. The girl glances down at the purple gem on her finger, muttering a bit as she prepares for yet another hunt.
The child would look around. They could properly understand exactly what was going through the minds of those around them. It was something that almost gave them a feeling resembling frustration. They wondered if they were really that far from the light who was able to not only understand those around it perfectly but able to do so with as if they were paintings written on the faces of the individuals.
Regardless, this wasn't true frustration but only something similar and still much fainter than frustration. The child would begin to grow accustomed to this place and thus would continue on their way.
Having let out a simple sign of leaving the child would continue walking in search of more of what they did not yet know.
looks like quite a bit happened while I was gone, if youâ€™re still around Saeko Iâ€™d be glad to continue, but I understand if it feels a bit awkward
I have no qualms about continuing this, though I'll be stepping out of the house relatively soon so responses may be fairly slow on my end.
Iâ€™m used to waiting a few hours, so itâ€™s no big deal to me. Just turn taking. I had intended exactly where we left off, but considering everything else it might be better to just let time pass
Just as promised, a young, blonde-haired girl returns to the garden, carefully tracing her path from yesterday. She kneels near the edge of the garden, stroking the petals of one of the nearest flowers before looking up to see who was around
After the incident last night, Saeko had returned to her nearby abode to rest. Even after waking up, it was difficult to understand how to handle what she had dealt with in the meeting with Prometheus.
Still, as always, Saeko left her home with her bag, and walked to her garden. As she got close, she stopped for a moment and her single uncovered eye widened in a small bit of surprise.
"Oh... hello. I am not used to people arriving so early... or frequently, for that matter."
A seemingly teenage girl strolls through the garden. It was one of those days where she was on her own again, she has some kin. Somehow, she ended up getting lost and ended up in this unfamiliar place... It was beautiful, surreal. Like something out of a storybook. She saw the two girls... One she was familiar with. This was kinda awkward... Regardless, she tries to maintain her composure and smiled.
Evening, ladies! I don't recall this place existing in Tokyo. This some kind of a wormhole?
Upon hearing Saeko, the girl jumps to her feet, taking a deep breath to calm her nerves, the young girl turns around with a cheerful smile â€œI told you Iâ€™d be back. Didnâ€™t think Iâ€™d just leave you alone after I promised did you?â€ The girl scratches the back of her head, shifting nervously between her feet as she continues â€œS... Sorry for leaving so suddenly. It was starting to get a little late, needed to be home before dark.â€ Hearing Senri speak up, the blonde girl quickly turns to face her and lets out a light, if somewhat nervous laugh â€œI... I donâ€™t think so. Though, admittedly I donâ€™t know too much about the place.â€
She sighed, but shrugged and let a small smile come to herself. "Honestly, that is more or less that I had expected. It is rare for anyone to come back so soon, even rarer that one returns to this dreaded place at all."
Placing her bag down, Saeko pulled a pair of white gloves and her apron out and began putting them on, preparing to work on the garden as always. "I am not entirely sure what a 'wormhole' even is, but I assure you this place is nothing special, just a small, overlooked area on the outskirts of Tokyo, it is a rather large place, after all."
Well, regardless, it's really nice! Whoever is taking care of this place has a regular green thumb. I've never been good with plants myself, I like to appreciate though.
Noticing Saeko put on her gloves, she was able to put two and two together quickly.
Ah, so it's yours? That's awesome. Not many places left like this in Tokyo. It's almost like it's hidden from the world. Like that one game... Dark Coronation, I think?
Senri sat down on the ground and decided to watch Saeko work for now.
The young girl relaxes a bit, giggling playfully as she steps by Saekoâ€™s side â€œDreaded? I donâ€™t think youâ€™re THAT scary miss... Maaaybe just a little bit.â€ The girl playfully nudges Saekoâ€™s elbow, of course she notices the older girl getting ready to work â€œwant any help while Iâ€™m here? Iâ€™ve got time.â€ before Saeko gets the chance to reply, the girl waves over to Senri â€œsure you just wanna sit out? It might be fun to learn.â€
"Dark Coronation?" She seems a bit confused but mostly brushes it off to kneel down and begin inspecting plants.
"Well, hiding it was never the intention. While I appreciate the quiet that comes from such an area, the garden was started here because it came that this place needed it most. I was not saying I am the dreaded one here, but the locale. This district is otherwise abandoned and not in the best of condition, as you can see."
Senri looks to Rasa, perplexed.
Erm... I kinda broke my last computer. I don't wanna break the flowers too. But if you guys could show me a bit that would be great! I'm sure a flower can liven up my place a bit.
She stood up and stepped closer to Rasa and Saeko, watching what they do for now as an example.
Oh, it's just this game I played before, don't worry. Hah. Probably sounds weird coming from someone like me.
I see, though. It's true, in a world like this, places are abandoned when they're no longer useful or profitable... I live in Yongen-Jaya. It's kind of a closed in place; bigger than this, but small for Tokyo. With how crowded the city seems to be getting, I imagine more people would come here if it was spruced up a bit. Maybe we can even make this a better place than the rest of the city and set an example to the rest of this place! If you were up for it of course.
A young man with spiky blonde hair and a braid flowing down on the back wearing glasses, a green trench coat, and a pendant walk into the garden, hoping to reconcile for a little bit and relax...
"...I should come here more often..." He said to himself, while a little girl that was the size of his palm wearing her usual butterfly motif dress with holographic wings floats beside him and sits on the small area of a bench where he seats himself in later looked at the garden with glee and joy, "You bet we are..." She said, though, only the young man can hear her though...
The girl lets out a deep sigh, somewhat disappointed at Saekoâ€™s reaction â€œOf course, I was just teasing.â€ The girl next mutters under her breath â€œkilljoy.â€ The blonde girl returns to her usual smile, glancing around at the nearby buildings â€œseems like a lot to â€˜spruce upâ€™. Especially with just the three of us.â€ Thatâ€™s around when she notices the blonde boy and his... Small friend? Regardless, the young girl waves to them â€œMake that four. Or..... five? Hey Mister, what do you think of helping clean the neighborhood a bit.â€
The man looks a little surprised a bit by the offer Rasa gave, "Oh, sure..." he said, as he got up and walked towards her, fixing his glasses as this was a first...The small girl fluttered her holographic wings and flew next to him, a faint, blue aura surrounding her...though it should be noted that for most of the people here except Rasa cannot see her...as no one else apparently notices her, "Aw come on GV, is this what it is for EVERY single girl you come across?" She pouted, crossing her little arms and turning her head away from GV. The blond boy ignored her as he extended his hand forward to Rasa, "I'm Kei..." He said, presumably not his real name, but it will do for now.