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30 October 2014 @ 10:35 pm
Table 2 theme #14 School  
Title: Blood and Rust-The Fourth Judge
Fandom(s): Yume Nikki/ Ao Oni
Character(s)/Pairing(s): Madotsuki, Sabitsuki
Rating: M for violence, implied sexual assult, and  suicide.
Theme: Table 2 theme #14 School
Words: 2,654
Summary: Madotsuki and Sabitsuki go back to school.
Note: This is actually chapter 23. This is part of the third story arc. A list of chapters for the first arc is here The list for the second arc is here.



Blood and Rust-The Fourth Judge

When Madotsuki awoke, she was in an eerily familiar building; she bit her lip at the realization of where she was. She sighed heavily. Every part of her body resented this place. It felt too soon to be back here.

Madotsuki walked along the empty hallway to a room labeled 3-A. She could see hear movement and braced herself for anything when she opened the door.

What she found was Sabitsuki was running from some monsters in the guise of school girls. They giggled as they closed in on her, backing her against the wall.

“Hold on!” Madotsuki said as she readied her knife.

“Mado?” Sabistuki said in surprise. Madotsuki ducked as Sabitsuki swung her pipe, knocking one of the scribble-faced girls silly.  ”Ah, so your hell is a school too?”

“Looks like it,” Madotsuki said as she stabbed one of the monsters. It screamed horribly, then dropped to the ground. “Someone sure has a sick sense of humor.”

“I know, right?” Sabistuki said she smacked the last one with her pipe. “I wasn’t there for very long, but it still sucked. I guess it made more of an impression on me than I first thought.”

“Yeah. I know that feeling.” Mado cleaned her knife of the blood. “Listen, you’re probably going to see some things in here that won’t make much sense to you.”

“I won’t ask, if you don’t, deal?” Sabistuki said as she brushed herself off.

“Sounds good to me,” Madotsuki said with a nod. “When we get out of here, maybe I’ll have the courage to tell you about it.”

“If we get out.”

“No, it’s when,” Mado said strongly. “I’m not done with this place yet, not by a long shot. I’ve still got five eggs to hunt for. I’m not giving up until I collect them all.”

"Huh? You’ve been looking for eggs as well? Do they, uh, do anything?"

"Some do, some don’t. Depends. I like the one that turns my face into a hand. I never lose the group when I go off on my own while they sleep."

“What happens after you get them all?” Sabitsuki asked. “I’m behind, I think.”

Madotsuki shrugged, but she smiled. “Who knows? I won’t know for sure until I get them all, right?”

"I guess not."

Madotsuki opened the door again. The interior had changed. Rust coated the walls and a strong scent of blood and rotting meat permeated the air.

"Ugh," Sabitsuki said as she coughed and plugged her nose. "It wasn’t like this before, right?"

Madotsuki plugged her nose as well. “No, we should check to see if any of the doors work.”

Sabitsuki fiddled with each door they came across. “No luck.”

Madotsuki sighed. “I guess there’s no choice we have to go to the labeled rooms.” Madotsuki dropped her hand from her nose. “This is… was, my classroom.”

“I’m guessing your desk is the trashed one in the back of the class,” Sabitsuki said as she scanned the area. “At least it doesn’t smell in here. I can finally breathe normally again.”

Madotsuki nodded. “That’d be it.” Still, she approached it and traced the graffiti gently with her fingers.

“You were called a witch too, huh?” Sabitsuki remarked. She coughed again, louder this time.

“Along with some less than pleasant other names,” Madotsuki said as she covered one of the other words with her hand. “I was one of the smartest people in my class, and I wasn’t particularly interested in socializing. People start to whisper things about you when you’re like that. My family history only added fuel to the fire.”

"Your brother was the one that died because of the haunted house, right?" Sabi said.

Madotsuki nodded as she continued to trace over her desk. “He was looking for something in there. From what I can gather he found something in there and it spooked him so bad that he didn’t…. see the car coming. He didn’t stand a chance. I hate cars. An auto accident got our parents, too. It took me forever to get the image of mom’s limp neck out of my head. And before that my friend…. well, she’s probably not my friend anymore.”

"I remember, from the woods, Monoko, right?"

"That’s right."

"So I gather it was just you and your brother for a long time?"

"Yeah. After mom and dad died, Mafuyu took care of me. I loved him so much. I didn’t expect to lose him too."

Sabitsuki looked to the side for a moment and coughed more violently. “At least you had some family to comfort you. Honestly, I can’t remember much about school, but when I was there, I was lonely too.” She looked at Madotsuki again. “You don’t have any trouble talking to us, except for maybe Mika. Did she do something to you?”

Madotsuki’s free hand curled into a fist.”I hate her for what she didn’t do. She claims she had nothing to do with it, but she did, even as a bystander.”

"She was there, when whatever it was happened, huh?"

"Yeah, she was."

A loud thump brought their attention forward. Hanging from the ceiling of the classroom were four pairs of girlish legs in long school skirts. They swung gently back and forth, like a pendulum on a clock.

"Poor things," Madotsuki remarked. "I wonder why they chose to do that? It seems cruel to just let them hang there." She thought for a moment, gathering as many tall things as she could before climbing up towards the ceiling, knife at the ready.

"Be careful, okay? Don’t kill yourself over some dead bodies," Sabitsuki said.

"I will! I can cut them down, I’m sure of it!" Madotsuki called.

Softly, one by one, the bodies fell down to the floor. Madotsuki carefully climbed back down to the ground.

Sabitsuki helped Madotsuki lay the girls out side by side. “Do you think this will sooth them?” she asked.

"I don’t know, but it was still a nice thing to do, I think." Sabitsuki smiled for a moment. "Speaking of cursed schools, do you know the rumor of the rundown elementary school?"

Madotsuki’s eyes lit up with interest. “Of course, it’s kind of infamous. My brother really wanted to investigate it to see if the disappearance stories were true, but he could never find a good time to sneak in.”

"I thought you’d know of it! Rumors are our lifeblood. Even though we were stuck in the hospital, we liked stories like that. It kept things interesting. Um, listen, before we go any further you should know why I left my school. I, uh, I hurt someone I care deeply for. Please don’t hate me.”

Madotsuki smiled. “It’s okay. I’m sure it wasn’t that bad.”

Sabitsuki turned away from her.”It was.” She began to cough terribly.

"I think we’ve done all we can for them." She put her hand on Sabistuki’s shoulder. " Hey, are you okay?"

"Get… away… from me…"

”What’s the?” Madotsiki began. When she saw Sabitsuki she drew back.  Sabitsuki’s face was suddenly coated in rust and blood.

"All of my friends… all of them had the same condition as me… in the end, they lost their minds to the illness and had to be killed. I don’t want to die, but I can feel myself slipping. I don’t want to die!” Sabitsuki wailed.

Madotsuki hugged her. “It’s okay! I’m right here with you! We’re going to get through this together, remember? I’m not going to let go of you, even if you lose your mind and kill me!”

“It’s too late, you know. I’m dying, don’t you see? Even if I get out of this place, it doesn’t change a thing!”

“No, it isn’t too late! You’re still here right now, aren’t you? You’re still dreaming, Sabi! You have to finish the dream before you die!”

A laugh echoed throughout the room.”How sweet, you brought someone down to your level.” At the sound of the laugh, Sabitsuki froze.

A boy with a familiar grin stepped into the center of the classroom.”It’s been awhile, Sabitsuki.”

"Ah, why are you-?" Sabitsuki began.

The boy towered over her, his smile menacing.”Apologize and I might forgive you,” he said, his eyes never left Sabitsuki.

She looked defeated, Sabitsuki dropped to her knees. “I’m sorry. Please, smile for me like you did back then, just once more.”

The boy smiled for her, and picked her up onto her feet. “Come here.” He pulled her into an embrace, letting her relax in his arms. Suddenly she stiffened, letting out a pained sound as he dropped her. He was no longer smiling, a small concealed blade now covered with blood between his fingers.

“That was for attacking my sister,” he said softly.

“You must really hate me, don’t you?” Sabitsuki murmured as she watched her blood slowly seep across the floor.

"Of course I do. I always did," he said. "Ever since we-!"

Suddenly Madotsuki beamed the boy in the back of the head with Sabitsuki’s dropped pipe. He did not fall from the impact. Sabitsuki looked up. He wasn’t whole after she hit him. He was… static?

I’m really worried about you, you know? But you’re strong, you’ll pull through.

“Stupid illusion! Don’t you dare lie to her!” Madotsuki snapped. Madotsuki stood protectively in front of her. “Sabi, it’s not true! We met him, remember? He’s looking for you even now! He called you a princess!”

When you do, we’ll come and see you again, both my sister and I. She’s already forgiven you.

“What?” Sabitsuki whispered.

Sabi, you weren’t yourself, we all know that. So don’t blame yourself for what happened, okay? I still….

"That’s right. You’re not the real him. You’re just my guilt!"

"You’re no fun. I wanted to play longer." said the static boy as he disappeared.

"You okay?" Madotsuki asked.

“Yeah. Hey, thanks for sticking with me through that.” Sabitsuki brushed herself off. “Huh? I’m not even bleeding anymore.”

Madotsuki smiled. “Of course, there’s nothing worse than suffering alone. Um, how long do you think you have?”

Sabistuki sighed. “I don’t know. Last I heard; I had less than a year. Then this happened. But, maybe, maybe, I can get better still? Do you think you could come and see me sometime? That would probably help. My company keeps getting smaller and smaller.”

“Yeah, sure. I’d be happy to come and see you. I’ll bring U-chan, too.”

Sabitsuki smiled.”Yeah. I’d like to see U-chan. Takeshi too, if he feels brave enough. The hospital I’m at is kind of creepy. Lots of people are in the process of losing their minds.”

Madotsuki laughed.”For you, I think he’ll pluck up his courage and come, especially if U-chan and I are going. Do you feel well enough to keep going?”

"Yeah. I can manage."

When they opened the classroom door to leave, they found themselves in a very dark and confined space. They could barely see in front of them, but Sabitsuki did notice that the wooden floor was replaced by white tile. When she looked up, the walls shot upward endlessly. A subtle putrid air wafted around them, it was less intrusive, but still noticeable. The space became narrower and more confined the further in they went.

I love you I love you I love you I love you I love you I love you I love you I love you I love you.

"No," Madotsuki whispered at the sound of the voice. “Leave me alone! You already ruined my life! Do you have to ruin my dreams as well? Go away!”

I love you I love you I love you I love you I love you I love you I love you I love you I love you.

It was as if a giant face had stretched itself out across the walls. The lights of the room flickered off and on. All the face did was look at her, but Madotsuki still doubled over, as if in pain.

Sabitsuki saw Madotsuki  crouching on the floor hands over her ears. It took her a moment to notice that Madotsuki was sitting in a pool of blood. When the face saw her like that, it laughed and laughed. Shadowed hands reached up from the darkness.

I love you.

"No! Don’t! Don’t touch me!" Madotsuki screamed as she frantically began to back away. The hands grabbed her pulling her down to the floor.

“Hey! Leave her alone! You creep!” Sabitsuki snapped. Without thinking, she ran up and punched the giant face in the nose with her fist.

“Oww! You bitch! What did you do that for?” a voice whined.

Sabitsuki looked again. That terrifying face was just a stupid boy in a middle school uniform. Their area of confinement was nothing more than a bathroom. It seemed she had broken the illusion.

Madotsuki lay still for a moment, curled protectively into a ball. When she decided she could stand up, Sabitsuki noticed that there was still blood running down her legs. Madotsuki looked down, embarrassed.

Oh.

Sabitsuki bit her lip. She wanted to say something, something comforting, but no matter how many times she ran the words over and over in her head, they never sounded right. In the end, she just offered up her hand. Mado took it, and for a moment they stared at each other. Madotsuki brushed off her red skirt. The blood still had not stopped. Had that always been there? Had she truly never noticed it until now?

Sabitsuki pulled Madotsuki into a hug. “Listen, this changes nothing. I don’t think any less of you, and I swear I won’t say anything to the others if you don’t want me to.”

Madotsuki began to shake again, but hugged her back. “Please don’t say anything. Especially not to Hiroshi or Takeshi, I couldn’t bear it! They were my classmates when it happened I still can’t… face them as to why I left our school. They think it’s because of what happened to Mafuyu, I’m sure, but!”

"I won’t. I promise. I won’t ask for any more details, but if you need someone to talk to, I’ll listen. I know it’s not the same thing, but I kind of understand. I’ve had enough strange and gross things happen to my body that I never asked for, either. "

Madotsuki wiped her eyes on her sweater sleeve.  She gently held Sabitsuki’s hands in her own.”Thank you, Sabi. You’re the first person who has said anything like that to me since it happened.” She tightened her grip. “He was not… the person I wanted to meet that day. The note I wrote was for…. someone else. When I realized what was happening, I wanted to scream, but I couldn’t find my voice, even though it hurt so much.” Her grip slackened a bit. “And then after it happened, nobody seemed to understand that I didn’t want it. They said things about me behind my back, and wrote things on my desk. After awhile I just…. couldn’t take it anymore. I tried to be strong for my brother’s memory, but he was gone by then. I was all alone.  I just wanted to sleep all the pain off, you know?”

"Yeah, I know the feeling," Sabitsuki said.

"Thank you. Thank you for trying to understand."

"Mado~! Sabi!" a little voice called.

"Sachi?" Madotsuki  and Sabitsuki asked together before looking at each other in surprise.

"I’ve been looking all over for you two!" The little girl in the red dress said. "Come on, the others are waiting!"

"Others?" Sabitsuki asked.

"Yep! If you come with me, you can see them!" Sachiko said.

Sabitsuki hesitated. “Should we believe her?”

"Yeah. I think so, Sachi’s a good girl." Madotsuki said with a smile. "If it’s a lie, I’ll protect you."

"That’s my line!" Sabitsuki said with a laugh. "Lead the way, Sachi."