Growing Under the Moonlight: Magipoka
Author's note: Each Chapter is its own short story. There is an underlying, continuous story, but it dies away.... Show full author's note »
Tomorrow's Spell Is A Blood Donation Of LoveTheir wander to the east came to a halt as they arrived at the sweet and vast town Onigashima, and found refuge in an old grand tree Aiko managed to patch up with her super-human abilities, and turn into a home. The whole inside was hallowed out and there were rooms and a kitchen, even an upstairs and a chimney with a watch tower so Pachira could sleep comfortably.
Pachira went through town one day on her own to pick up some groceries for Aiko, who did most of the cooking, even though she didn’t actually have to eat anything herself, she felt obligated to tend to the well-being of her ‘henchmen.’ So she walked down the sidewalk looking very lonely and out-of-place in her raincoat, and cardboard box on her head she’d found (she had to keep out of the sun). “Too fat.” she thought, “too slimy, too prideful. Aren’t there any nice, conservative guys around?”
“Please help us with our blood drive!” a tall, slender and quaint looking man at the end of the street said, in a doctor’s uniform, holding up a sign, in front of the donor’s truck. “Today we’re especially looking for 0 and AB types. It won’t take more than thirty minutes, so please participate in the blood drive!”
She blushed and walked up to him.
“Pleas help out with the…” he was cut-off.
“Would you give me your blood?” she asked shyly. “I’m anemic. I’d really like your blood. It has to be yours.”
“Where should we do it? Right here, perhaps in the bus? Whatever we’re supposed to.”
“Miss, this is a place to donate blood. We take blood from everyone.”
“Well then! I’ll start working here too!”
“Even if you say that all of the sudden, you can’t.”
“What?! I can’t?”
“You can’t, we’re leaving soon.” Someone called to him from inside the truck. “Coming!”
“Wait! What do I have to do to get your blood?”
“Well, if you were so low on blood that your life was in danger, you’d receive a blood transfusion. That’s what these blood donations are for.”
“Huh.” She said, stepping back and blushing sadly.
“See you later.” He stepped on the bus and it took off.
She stared as it left with heavy eyes.
She came back the next day.
“Please help us out, donate for the blood drive!”
“Good afternoon.” She said to him.
“Oh, you’re the girl from yesterday. What can I do for you today?”
“Uh, um… I’ve come to give blood!”
“Thank you for your assistance, please, go right in.”
Happily, like her life had finally started, she stepped in.
He was still going on when she came out: “Please give blood for the blood drive! Today…” he turned to her. She was even paler than usual, and a little dazed. “Are you alright? You don’t look so well.”
“Y-You’re worried about me?” her eyes glittered hopefully.
“Of course I am. If something were to happen to you…”
“I’ll come back tomorrow!” she was so happy.
“Huh? I’m happy you feel that way, but if you don’t wait a while, you won’t be able to donate blood. Besides, are you really alright?”
“Oh, I see. I understand. I’ll be back.” She left with tunnel-vision down the street. Concentrated and determined.
Though as soon as she got inside and sat down at the table, her head fell flat against it. Yuuma stared at her in wonder.
“I’ve lost blood; I can’t move.” She said in a miserable voice.
“Pachira, I brought you some tomato juice.” Aiko said running to her aid, her metal feet rumbling the ground. She tripped over her own weight and the glass broke across the floor, she got the tomato juice on her dress and all over the ground.
“Aiko!” Pachira said in a weak voice, standing up to help her.
“I’m sorry. Please, sit down, it’s okay.”
But she grabbed a rag and helped her get it off: “no, you got it for me, you were trying to help me, and now I feel bad.”
“Really, it’s okay. Pachira please try and sit down?” she grabbed the rag delicately from her shaking hands.
“You need to rest. You’ll be helping me plenty by doing that, and I’ll get you another glass.”
“Thank you so much.”
The next day she was back.
“Please help us out!” he yelled.
“Good afternoon.” She said again, in an even shier voice. “I’ve come to donate again.”
“Oh, it’s you. Are you alright now?”
“Yes, of course! I want to donate again!” he eagerness made him chuckle.
“Well then, right this way.”
Still talking as she walked back outside from the bus: “Today we’re looking for type B donors.”
She was frail and stiff, almost blue-skinned.
“Good heavens, you look terrible! Are you alright?!”
She fell into his arms, happy for the chance. She took a breath and closed her eyes. “I’m sorry, I’m really o…” she glanced up at him and her eyes locked on his neck. Her vision went red and her teeth felt sore.
“You shouldn’t push yourself.” He said, taking no notice.
His voice calmed and reoriented her, surprised and angry at herself, she turned to head back home with the setting sun. “I’ll be back.” She said mechanically.
This time Liru sat with her, Aiko ran to her aid, tripped and dropped the tomato juice again.
Later she crept to Yuuma’s bed while she slept and got dangerously close, but Yuuma woke at just the right moment. “Who’s there?” she said sleepily, rubbing her eyes, but Pachira was already gone. “What was I thinking.” She thought to herself, feeling terribly guilty.
The next morning Aiko knocked on her watchtower’s door, Yuuma and Liru behind her. “Pachira, Pachira are you okay?”
“What’s wrong Aiko?” Yuuma asked.
“She took all the tomato juice and locked herself in her room.”
“Huh? What’d she do that for?” Liru chirped.
“That’s not fair, hogging all the tomato juice!” Yuuma added.
“You drink that stuff?” said Liru, surprised.
“Uh, no, I hate tomato juice!”
Aiko sighed and continued: “Anyway, something isn’t right here. She’s been looking really pale lately.”
“She’s pale?” Liru confirmed.
“Do you mean she’s ugly?” Yuuma thought aloud.
Liru laughed, then Yuuma started cracking up too, but they were silenced by the door flying open.
“I told you not to disturb me.” Pachira said. She was still blue, and wore a hood, covering the top half of her face. Yuuma’s two bunnies hid behind her legs and stared in fear.
“Hey.” Said Liru, confused.
“Who’s the weirdo in Pachira’s room?” asked Yuuma, scared.
“It’s me, Pachira. You’re looking so healthy.”
She giggled: “well thank you!”
Pachira held back and took a deep and dry swallow.
“What’s wrong, does your tummy hurt?” asked Liru.
In a rage she swiftly stuck metal collars around both of them. Dazed from the speed they stared at her, then figured it out: “What? Hey! What’s with this thing?!” Liru yelled, having a personal hatred for collars.
“I’m going to ask a favor of you.” Pachira said, turning to go back inside: “don’t let me see your necks. Please.” The door closed.
The two struggled to get them off and Aiko kept pounding at the door. Pachira stayed in a corner drinking up all the tomato juice. “I’ve finally found love. Tomorrow I’ll be able to see him again!” she said to herself.
Night fell and she hadn’t budged. The moonlight pierced her window and rallied her predator’s spirit. Her eyes went red and she dashed out the door in a miserable second-wind. “Blood, I need blood!” she screamed at the top of her lungs, bursting through Yuuma’s door, flying to her bed and chomping on the metal collar, nearly breaking her teeth. She took a moment and sat up: “Who?” she yelled, “who did this?!”
Aiko flipped the light switch and walked in with Liru, who was still pretty much asleep. “Pachira, you did. Pachira, please stop this!” Aiko pleaded, sincerely. “I don’t know what it is you intend to do, but I don’t want to see you desperate and beat-up like this.” She held up a tomato juice can, “I’ve squeezed some blood in here for you. Here, gulp it all down and return to your normal, healthy self.”
Pachira stood breathing heavily with her dry mouth open and her teeth out. She swallowed, bringing her chapped lips together.
“Come on!” she kept pleading.
Aiko helped her friend’s shaking hand up to the can, and then she held it, still shaking, staring at it, ashamed and angry.
“Go on, drink it in one gulp.”
Her trembling reduced to a cold still, and she turned the can sideways so the blood dripped to the wooden floor. “Thank you Aiko,” she said as it poured out, “I was about to lose it. I’m all right now. What you said really got to me. You’re a very determined person. Tonight I feel like I can sleep like a rock.” It was all empty. “Well, good night.” She walked back to her room.
“N-No way.” Aiko said, falling to her knees and staring at it. “Now I’m the one that has to clean it up!”
Yuuma was still sitting up in bed, staring at the blood on the ground, hugging a stuffed animal, and Liru stood behind Aiko, too tired to move.
She came back the next day.
Her eyes were dead and staring straight as she walked down the street. She was blue and stiff as a board. A barren, desolate air omitted from her.
“Please help out with the blood drive!” he said. “Today we’re looking for donors of all types. Please donate blood…” he was stunned by her condition, and with what little she had, she blushed.
“I came to donate blood.” Then she fell to the ground. He caught her before she hit her head.
“Hey! You can’t do anything in your condition! If you don’t get a blood transfusion quickly…”
“Yours.” She said hopefully.
“I want your blood.”
“I am so happy. I finally…” she blacked out and heard his voice as she fell into a deep sleep: “Excuse me! I need someone’s assistance right away!”
She woke in a clean bed in the bus. He was standing over her: “How do you feel? Are you awake?”
“Everything’s fine now. Just rest for a while longer.”
She looked at her arm and it was bandaged. She had received the transfusion. She blushed in a healthy way. Her face was full of life and she was about to cry. “You and I have been joined together.” She said.
Outside the bus the man spoke to Liru: “Well, you really helped out a lot. I didn’t think I’d find anyone with the right type to be a donor.”
“You don’t need to thank me. I’m just doing my part to help people! Just, don’t mention it to her, okay?”