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The following is a work of fiction. Any statements regarding any person, place, or other entity (real or imaginary) is the sole responibility of the author of this work of fiction. Fan Works Inc. takes no responsibility for the content of user submitted stories. All stories based on real people are works of fiction and do not necessarily reflect on the nature of the individuals featured. All stories based on other copyrighted works are written with authors knowing that these works violate copyright laws.

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Prescence (II)
By "~*Destiny no Miko*~"

 

(Please note: This story is based on the animated short "Presence," found in

the animated feature, "Robot Carnival." I don't remember who wrote and

animated the original story, but it belongs to its creator. This is merely

my interpretation of it. Fushigi Yuugi and characters are the property of

Watase Yuu, Flower Comics, etc. That's my disclaimer. Don't bother suing

me, I don't even own my own computer.)



(It might help if you are familiar with both animes, but I hope that those

who haven't seen "Robot Carnival" can still enjoy this. I will give a brief

explaination of the story in the next paragraph - if you are not interested

or don't want to spoil the story, skip it.)



* $ $ $ SYNOPSIS FOR: "Robot Carnival's" "Presence" $ $ $ *



(In "Presence," a toymaker creates a beautiful android girl, life-sized,

unlike anything he has ever created before. After he activates her, she

spends some time with him and begins to develop a distinct personality. He

is scared; he never programmed her to develop emotions and such, and when

she becomes too "real," he lashes out at her. A little while later, he goes

back to his work area and she is there, covered with cobwebs and destroyed.

Many years later, when he is a very old man, he is sitting out on his porch

one summer days when the wind begins to blow and the girl walks out of the

field towards him. She blows up, just as she had when he destroyed her

years ago. But he approaches her, and takes her hand and walks away with

her. His wife comes out to see him walking away, but when she blinks, he and

the girl both disappear. Was she just a figment of his imagination,

merely an android, or did she come to gain a soul in her short life?

You decide.)



* $ $ $ END SYNOPSIS $ $ $ *



*** *** ***



Bishonen no Miko presents:

Presence (II) (revised edition)



*** *** ***



His footsteps padded lightly down the leaf covered path. It was still very

early in the morning; dew hung from the trees and covered ever blade of

grass. The air was heavy and sweet, cool and pleasant to breathe. He

stopped a few moments just to enjoy all of this, closing his eyes and

moving foward on memory alone.



When he opened his eyes again, he was standing in front of a familiar little

shack. It was rather rough, the wood mismatched, the glass panes of the

windows broken and covered in places with gauzy material. He put out one

hand and placed it against the door. One, two, three... and with a little

effort, he pushed it open.



Tamahome gave a faint smile as he walked into the dusty shed. The thin

morning light streamed through the half opened door and the cracked,

frosted mirrors. He made his way through slowly, casually glancing at the

tools and toys that littered his little haven. He pushed past a table

covered with little tin toys he had made, knocking one of them off. He bent

down and picked it up, examining it for damage. He slowly turned it over,

rubbing at it with his thumb. It smiled back at him, this tiny toy, with

its fox face and bamboo kasa pulled over its head.



"It's cute, no da," he said to himself, imagining what Chichiri would

probably say if he saw it. He wound up the key in the back and put the toy

onto the floor, watching in satisfaction as it tottered off. It wobbled

past other toys, some broken, others in various states of formulation, then

came to a stop with a dull thud as it hit something dangling off the end

table.



Tamahome sucked in his breath. The doll was there. Even now, he still

didn't understand what had possessed him to create such a thing. So much

more elaborate than the simple wind-up toys, it was magnificent, large-as-

life, and almost alive. The morning light playing off of its masculine

features, warming them . But it sat slumped against the wall, unmoving,

unaware of Tamahome's fear.



"Why?" Tamahome breathed, drawing closer. He reached a tentative hand out

to the long blond hair that framed the face, then sighed in relief as he

felt how cold and stiff it was.



No, he still did not understand. Why had he created this... thing? Yes,

that was the best desciption for it. He had painstakingly sculpted the

face and body and handcrafted the impressive suit of armor, chosen only the

finest clothing in an attempt to reproduce what he remembered, bought real

hair to crown its head. But it was still only a machine, a life-sized

version of the toys he created for children like his own.



"This is not a toy," he said aloud.



Several hours later, Tamahome was busily working on a new project. He sat

at his workdesk, pushing little gears together, until one of them slipped

out of his hand and rolled under another table. Tamahome dove under the

table to retrieve it, but banged his head when he backed out. Rubbing his

sore head, he looked up to see what he had run into.



"You..." Almost against his will, he found himself abandoning his new

project and going back to work on the doll one last time...



*** *** ***



Tamahome stumbled back hastily. Those eyes... those blue eyes. They were

staring back at him evenly. His body involuntarily jerked into a fighter's

stance, but it felt unfamiliar to him after all this time.



The head cocked, then swift and silently as a owl, it slid off the table it

had sat on for so long and glided onto the floor in front of him, the only

sound the rustling of its blue cloak. Gracefully, it took a few steps

foward. Tamahome backed up as far as he could go, an old fear creeping up

in his throat, cutting off his scream.



The android held its hand in front of it, watching the sun glow on it, then

a familiar half smile crossed its lips. At its full height, it stood about

6 foot 4, looming over Tamahome.



"It is fall," it said in a deep voice that had Tamahome sweating.



"Y... yes. Na... ka..."



The android had been looking around, but now it moved closer to Tamahome

again and said, "Tamahome-sama." Not a question, but a statement.



Tamahome nodded, then found a clear path and backed up slowly until he

bumped into the door of the shed. He pulled it open, then walked out

slowly.



*** *** ***



After a few days, Tamahome had adjusted to a new routine. He arrived at the

shack a little earlier than usual and went home a little later. Instead of

eating at home, he had his wife pack him a lunch and brought it with him.



"What is that?"



Tamahome looked up from his lunch and said, "This is chicken, and this is..."



"Rice." The doll smiled. "Your wife Miaka made it for you. You told me

yesterday. And you have two children; a little boy and girl."



"That's right," he agreed. *What an amazing capacity to learn,* he thought.



"Tamahome-sama."



"Hmm?" The android was now looking out the window, pushing away the thin

material that blocked its view. "What is it like outside?"



"It's um... bright. Noisy. There are things like trees and birds, and a

lot of people. But you can't go outside. Ever."



The blue eyes flickered over him, but it didn't make a sound. Tamahome

finished up his lunch and went back to work.



It didn't talk to him again the whole day.



*** *** ***



Tamahome was quite relieved to find the android was still there when he

arrived the next day. But as soon as he sat down, it turned to him and said,

"Tamahome-sama. I want to go outside."



"I told you yesterday, no."



"I want to see the tree and birds, the other people."



Tamahome shook his head vigorously and began to work. "You can't."



"Why?"



He looked up and fixed the android with a glare. "You are a machine. There

is nothing for you oustide. Other people cannot see you... wha?" Tamahome

gasped as the android snatched the little yellow tin bird out of his hand.



"I want to go outside."



"You haven't even a name!" scoffed Tamahome, reaching for the bird.



The doll pulled away. "Why haven't I got a name? Why can't I go outside?"



"Stop it! Stop it! You aren't supposed to argue with me, damnit!"



The android's hands slammed down on the table, breaking the bird toy. "You

are Tamahome-sama. Who am I? Why can you go home to your wife and children

and I cannot?"



"This is your home. And you have no family."



"I am your child. But you leave me here alone."



Tamahome stood up angrily. "You are NOT a child! You are a machine. I did

not program you to respond to me in this manner; this is unacceptable!"



"You created me, so I am your child. But you do not treat me like one, you

do not love me..."



"Love!?" Tamahome laughed nervously. "I didn't create you to love. I

didn't even program that into you. You're breaking your programming... how?

No matter, you were a mistake. A big mistake." He began reaching behind his

back, his hand searching the table behind him.



The blue eyes misted over. "You made me... why did you create me? So you

could vent your hatred? But I love you, Tamahome..." Its cloak rustled a

little as it moved towards him.



Tamahome gritted his teeth as the android's hand reached for him, his hand

finally snagging something that seemed usable. He tensed his muscles,

awaiting the opportunity, then swung his arm out and struck viciously as a

single tear rolled down the doll's cheek...



*** *** ***



He gave his resignation notice to the toy company the next day. Tamahome

had already been contemplating retirement, but now he had decided. Miaka

was surprised; he had loved his job, but she stood behind his decision.

They decided to sell the house, for it was too big now that the kids were

long gone, and the shed was no longer needed. After many months, a buyer

made an offer, and they accepted.



Tamahome went down to the shed one last time after they had packed up. They

were going to move a smaller house nearby, but he didn't think that he

could keep an eye on the shack. Better to be rid of it. One, two, three...

and with a little effort the door opened.



It lay against the back wall, in the corner, broken. Spiders had already

done their work, covering the prone figure with lacy gray cobwebs that

dulled the once shiny armor and soft hair. But it was not the spiders which

had stained the fine fabrics with oil, nor had they split open the

artificial skin.



Tamahome felt a shiver run down his spine. The empty eyes stared at him in

accusation. Tamahome sighed and walked out, shutting the door firmly behind

him, bolting it and padlocking it, and without glancing behind, walked back

to his waiting wife and young children.



*** *** ***



It was hot and the wind refused to blow. Tamahome wiped at his brow and

wondered why it was so warm, even in the shade. They were caught in the

middle of Indian Summer, so that even though the trees were turning into

their bright autumn colors, it felt like summer. Miaka came out and offered

him some iced tea, which he gratefully accepted. She smiled when he showed

her the little bird toy he was making for their grandchild, then set it back

on the little table beside him. It had been years since he had made any new

toys, many years; ever since...



Since then, his children had grown and had children of their own.



The day passed by slowly, and Tamahome contemplated taking a nap, but then

the wind picked up a little. Tamahome opened his eyes with a little effort,

smiling at the refreshing breeze. He sighed softly, settling back into his

seat on the porch. How slowly time passed, the days, the years...



Tamahome's eyes snapped open at the sound of fabric flapping in the breeze.

His eyebrows furrowed as he looked out into the dry fields of grass, his

eyes focusing on a tall cloaked figure.



"..."



The figure came nearer, his heavy royal blue cape moving around him like

waves. He stopped a good 30 feet away and didn't say a word.



*Impossible!... You...*



*Tamahome*



"Nakago." Tamahome said, shaken.



"Why was I created... Tamahome?"



Tamahome began shaking his head. He jumped at the first explosion, which

blew right through the middle of Nakago's chest. Oil erupted, staining the

immaculate robes. Smoke tendrils rose after the next explosion, and the

third sent him to his knees.



*No, I didn't do it!* his mind screamed, even as his memories betrayed him.

Tamahome stood up, eyes wide, as Nakago nonetheless reached his hand out to

him, a surprisingly gentle smile on his face.



Tamahome's lower lip trembled. "Forgive me," he whispered softly, then he

slowly walked to Nakago.



Miaka rushed out to see what was happening, and gasped when she saw Tamahome

walking away on the arm of a familiar blonde man.



"Tama... home? Tamahome!!" But he did not acknowledge her, and after she

stopped to rub the tears welling up in her eyes, she did not see them

anymore. She backed into the little table on the porch, knocking something

off. The yellow tin bird fell, but was caught by a sudden gust of wind and

flew up past Miaka and out into the endless sky.



*** *** ***



Author's notes: Sappy? Stupid? What do you, the reader think? I wish this

was as stirring and poignant as the original "Presence"; if you haven't seen

it, it is worth your time to do so. Obviously, Tamahome and Nakago aren't

the right pairing for this, but I have a Nakago fixation, as my friends

could tell you. If you are confused, read the summary of the original

"Presence" on the top of this page (it is marked with $). If you still have

questions, feel free to ask me.



This was originally written on May 24th (I think), but I revised the

ending a bit in order to give the reader something to think about when

they got to the end. Was it Nakago? Was it the android? Had it gained

a soul or was it just a hallucination?



HEY! (Blatent plug) If you have a webpage showing anyone evil (any Seiryuu

people count) in a good light, please join my new webring: The Wickedly Cool

Evil Ring of Anime. It's at:

"http://www.geocities.com/Tokyo/Flats/4814/revil.html"



If anyone wants to reach me, come to my Shrine of Bishonen at:

http://www.aestheticism.com/visitors/Miko/

or you can e-mail me at:

bishonennomiko@rocketmail.com



Bishonen no Miko, August 11, 1997

 

The preceeding was a work of fiction. Any statements regarding any person, place, or other entity (real or imaginary) is the sole responibility of the author of this work of fiction. Fan Works Inc. takes no responsibility for the content of user submitted stories. All stories based on real people are works of fiction and do not necessarily reflect on the nature of the individuals featured. All stories based on other copyrighted works are written with authors knowing that these works violate copyright laws.

Please see the Terms of Service for more information.

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