[ It was the reaction he expected. With a quiet ‘oof’ at the force she clings to him with, he attempts not to be awkward with his movement and sighs, briefly wrapping his arms around her in an attempt to… oh, what was tat thing Wright was always talking about but he never did? Oh right, ‘hug’. There was a time and a place for everything, and now was the time for such an act. With a low, rumbling laugh and a lazy expression (albeit, a rare one for him) he raises a hand and puts it on her head, as if he was quietly telling her to calm down— but not really.
Typical, typical Kay.
But returning to an office without her had been like returning to a house without a cat; something that demanded you attention every second of its day, and it annoys you for that reason… but when it stops demanding you get worried, and suddenly you want said attention again. And he wanted said attention. After the girl had barged into his life all those months ago he had become tolerant of her quirky personality and was somehow becoming accustomed to it, the brightness of her smiles, and the excitement she brought to life. So for that reason, as he witnessed her trying to be strong, he ruffled her fringe like he had done with someone else very close to him, someone he wished that, when he was younger, he had cared for more… ]
I couldn’t leave you alone… [ He replies smartly, a sparkle in his eyes that indicated he was up to his usual wit. ] After all, you could have been involved in a murder case or could have stolen something. And who would come to save you in that instance?
[ And a pause, before— ]
[ ..He quietly let his fingers become entangled from her fringe as his hands lowered until they are scraping her cheek… and he gently he dragged his thumb underneath her eye, catching the tears that were threatening to fall before they could with a soft expression. ]
… Don’t cry, Kay. If you aren’t strong, then God knows I wont be strong either.
[ He donned an awkward smile. ]
Next time, if I leave, I am dragging you with me.
[He looked ridiculous — a good kind of ridiculous, though, and she appreciated the gesture more than anything. He needed to look ridiculous more often, because ridiculous was human and more than once did she have doubts about whether this unique man was as human as everyone else believed he was. Whenever he showed such non-robotic emotion and reactions… it made her mood pick up almost instantly.
To know that they could remain such opposites yet still be as close as they were, even through the guise that the prosecutor had to keep up for the sake of his reputation, made moments like these all the more perfect, reunion aside. It was an accomplishment of sorts.
It was time to stop those tears, now that she knew he wasn’t going anywhere anytime soon. He was still Edgeworth, and she was still Kay, and for the moment, everything felt absolutely perfect. If not for the rugged, eerie set-up of the circus around them, it would almost feel as though they had stepped back home, to the busy Los Angeles streets or the hushed law office with enough locked doors and paperwork to keep both of them content with each other’s presence.
Kay sighed happily, biting her lip to keep from emitting some sort of over the top, high-pitched squeal. She felt like dancing on the spot, but knowing her, that would probably end up in falling over or accidentally hitting the man in the face. Instead, she pouted childishly, narrowing her gaze in faux annoyance.]
H-Hey! You’re the one who’s always getting into trouble! But, I guess you do have a point… [She trailed off, sniffing loudly before bringing a finger to her temple and flashing him a proud smile.] Eheh, one of these days it’ll be the other way around, y’know, and I’ll be the hero swooping in at the last minute to save the day!
[Nodding once, she prodded him gently in the chest, her smile not once wavering as she managed to muster up as much determination as possible for a good scolding. He wasn’t going to get out of that easily, not at all.]
I’m going to keep you to that, you know. It’ll be like a promise, and you can’t break it, ever! If I wake up one day and you’ve gone off without me, then you’ll be in for a stern lecture the second I figure out where you’ve gone. Who knows what sort of trouble you’d get up to without me to keep you in line, Mister!
[ He should have been surprised, but for some unknown reason for the first few seconds of him spotting her he could only stare blankly. He had started out in this circus with no-one- then he had gained a few familiar faces, and lost them. But the only person he hadn’t seen enough of was the girl who, at home, acted like his shadow- she arrived, he left… back to an office where she wasn’t waiting for him. It was not like anything had changed. It was not like he had been whittled down to the bare threads of his sanity like others by the affair. It was more like he… had come out of it as a more weary person than before.
But there was no doubt about it, right?
This was Kay, right? ]
[ … And in that instant, a smile tugged at the corner of his lips and his cold barrier broke as his mind forced him to relax. Stop panicking. Stop worrying. It wasn’t any different now. She was here and she was safe and she wasn’t getting herself hurt somewhere or getting into trouble, and it wasn’t as if she was ever going to find said trouble in a place like this with him here. He’d never allow it. With a look of mild humour on his face to mask his tiredness, the man raises a hand to the air… ]
( Its her… )
… Kay. [ He spoke with his voice as strong as ever, and continuing the motion, he bowed to her curiously, as was the custom after casually not seeing someone for a long time. ]
Forgive me for staring, but for a second there, I almost thought you said something quietly…
… If I knew this place had the power to stop even the great Yatagarasu from yelling, then I would have offloaded you here earlier.
[ But of course, he is only joking. His tone was almost… heartfelt for someone of his stature and nature, and returning to his full height he retains the gentle smile that he wore before, ready to probably be tackled to the ground by the girl… and when he speaks, no longer is humour dwelling there, but an odd kind of warmth that makes said smile seem ever more happier. ]
… I’m back…
… And I apologise for ever leaving you here alone.
[There was no mistaking it. That voice, that gesture, that unique air of intelligence and a sort of concern that only those really close to him could detect through the cold exterior — it must have been him. He was finally back, after so long without a word.
With all the power of the Great Thief, not that that really counted for anything in this particular situation but like heck she was going to just disregard it, she ran towards the man and clung to his neck like there was no tomorrow.
It was like being a kid all over again. A lost little girl who’d seen too much and needed someone to cling to, to cry over. It felt like a new beginning of sorts, so long as she could keep him in her sights, and maybe she wouldn’t have to be alone again.
He was real, because she could feel that same warmth from long ago; the type of warmth you’d never expect from a man like him, all stern gazes and that annoyingly professional facade that he rarely let up around anybody else.
Disregarding his little taunts — and oh how she had missed that, those small jabs at her supposed legacy and her giddy antics that were so normal for them by now — the thief shook her head, burying her nose into his chest with a huff and a quick stomp to the ground. Her eyes were prickling, tears threatening to ruin his pristine outfit yet again, and she didn’t care for a second.]
You — you — you’re a… a stupid idiot, you know that?! Do you have any idea how worried I was?! I thought you’d been kidnapped again, or maybe you’d gotten lost in the forest or eaten by a bear or lost your cravat! I missed you so much, and nobody seemed to know anything about what happened or where you went and I…
[Giving him one last firm shake, Kay releases the frilly tell-tale accessory from her grasp, her voice returning to normal; shakily at first, and she had to take a moment to try to force words that refused to be spoken before her composure returned and a broad grin made its way onto her face.
She was happy just to see him, and happier to be standing here, almost choking him with her excitement and all of the worry that had built up since their last brief meeting.]
I… I forgive you, you busy ol’ prosecutor man! Just don’t go taking off without telling me again, you hear?
( … Do you ever get that feeling of hard nostalgia that trips you and tackles you to the ground? …Well, that is what I feel now. Its a horrible feeling, I assure you…
…. But never the less, one that cannot be averted. )
[ Ah, the bitter irony of having returned home for a few weeks… just to be redirected after a given amount of time back to the hell hole of an encampment he had once called a ‘temporary home’. It was odd; when out of said home, he hadn’t remembered he was once trawling the trailers with his friends he had made here, a stifling gaze itching to find some sort of relief to the pain of boredom and torment one faced when caged like a rat. But now he was back, he remembered it all, and his memory once more was a painting of annoyance and dependency on others. ]
I wonder if I’ll even remember anyone… I wonder if anyone will even remember me.
( The human memory has always been one to try my patience. As much as I wish to wilfully be left alone by the more ‘rougher’ people in life, I still require the company of my… former companions…
… And maybe even the company of new people whom can help me figure out to escape this place once more. )
[ His vestigial muse had become recessive to his primal urge to seek out the truth as usual, and fixing his face into a determined stare, he prepared to once more hound out the answers to one of the biggest mysteries he had been faced with so far… and to put together the pieces of the truth that had been fragmented around. ]
( Its time to find out what is really going on here. )
[For all of her keen observational skills that had been carefully honed — or not so carefully, as her ‘reputation’ would have it — the thief’s mind drew nothing but a blank when her eyes spotted a small flash of magenta and white some distance from her position in a more spacious area of the otherwise crowded circusground. It was a small fluttering of clothing and a change in the air that made her attention snap to the figure, her shoulders raising defensively.
She was never overly fond of the sensation of deja vu. Twice now, she’d found herself stuck in this establishment, catching only a short glimpse of the man; she was momentarily excited, but with how unpredictable things had been lately, she wouldn’t get her hopes up too soon.
Carefully, Kay stepped forward, intuitively masking any sound of her boots scraping across patches of dirt and dying grass, her head tilted to the side with an expression of concern and undying curiousity. Already, it was seeming like an adventure, her own mystery unfolding day by day with more new arrivals and the potential to meet old friends.
Even so… She was more nervous as she approached the figure than she had been upon meeting anyone else here, no matter what they looked like or how rough their tone was or how they dismissed her for a silly little idealistic teenager.
Clearing her throat, she raised a hand in a half-wave, having to squint through the harsh sunlight still obscuring her vision. She really hoped her voice wasn’t going to be quieter than intended.]
[she tilted her head and smiled a little] Well I couldn’t help but feel a thief should have a tad more grace about them… so well done for breaking my judgements, that was very poor of me. [of course this was a joke, but she did regret the fact that she had gotten into the habit of judging people as she met them, or judging what people said they were]
Those conditions would indeed be ideal, I could probably accomplish a lot myself in that case. But no, I don’t know. For me, this place is much better than home. Or any “home” I ever had anyway… [as Kay clambered up beside her, Homura peered at her through the corner of her eyes] I suppose you do sort of look the part of “thief”. [she had almost forgotten that she herself was a thief, and that she also stole information from time to time. Mostly weapons though] If you had just met me for the first time up here, would you think I were a thief too?
Maybe so.. in any case, thanks for at least somewhat giving my theory some grounds in fact. It’s possible that time simply moves very slowly outside compared to in here
hello narnia. [she let out a sigh of relief, if that was the case then Madoka and Sayaka’s parents wouldn’t be worrying about them. Not only that.. but there was a very small chance she would ever miss Walpurgisnacht. In that case, she may well have returned to a scene of utter destruction, and everyone else Madoka had known would probably be dead. She didn’t look at all forward to seeing those tears in her eyes again..]
No need to apologise, this has been of more use to me than I’d anticipated.
Good thing I’ve gotten used to those taunts of yours, huh? Who knows, maybe one day you’ll see how much ‘grace’ there is to me! There’s not much for a thief to do in a place like this anyways. Plus, I can’t help it if I’m a bit clumsy now and then. It’s what adds to the charm!
[It wasn’t really something she minded — after so many years of being that one strange girl who’d trip over her feet in the middle of doing something melodramatic and inappropriately over-the-top, it had become a bit of a normal thing, and maybe she was starting to look forward to whatever silliness would be thrown her way more often. Maybe.
If it made conversation with Homura more lighthearted then Kay would take anything.]
Iiiiif I saw you sitting on top of a run-down looking trailer, then maybe I would, yep! I don’t think you can really call those sort of things though… I mean, thieves are supposed to blend in, right? So it’d probably be pretty difficult to tell if someone was up to something right off the bat. But now that you mention it, I guess my perception’s not the most handy thing ever. [She leaned back, staring at the other girl intently. She raised an interesting point; though the giddy thief might have been a bit biased.]
Are you a thief like me, Miss Homura? Eheh, you don’t look like one, so! Maybe you’re an information thief as well. You’re definitely curious enough for it. Even if I don’t really have much to tell you about how this world works next to all the others, it sounds like you’re pretty intent on figuring it out from more than just me or yourself. You fit the bill!
I suppose it’s good to see you again [because she’s friendly? It would be embarrassing to admit that] the fact that you’ve left multiple times is very interesting to me, Faraday-san. [she still insisted on using the girl’s surname unfortunately]
Keep in mind that if I knew my way in and out of this place, I would make sure I stayed. For all I knew you were beginning to like it here, which is why you came back? [she smirked] But I see now that this isn’t the case.
Well then, since you’re here you might as well. [she subtly gestured to the top of the trailer] It’s not my own trailer anyway, so it’s not like I have the right to say you cannot join me if you wish to. [this girl has no sense of personal space, seriously] You mentioned spending more time at home next time, if such a thing ever happens. What I’d like to know is.. during your time here, has any or much time passed in your own world?
I ask this because I theorize that this world does not affect the outside Universes in any way. To put it simply, time passing here does not affect time passing outside, and if you were to return it would be almost as if you never left. Are you able to confirm or deny this theory in any way?
Aw yis! See, knew I’d have some sort of impression on you, Miss Homura.
Trust me, I’d never trade away my time here for anything! But… Nothing quite beats home, you know? Plus there aren’t many creepy masked men running around there that I know of so it’s a bit less bothersome. [A small giggle and a quick wave of a hand before finding a good foothold on the trailer’s doorhandle and climbing like the almost-professional she was.] ‘course, if someone asked me if I wanted to come back under the condition that I could out as well, I’d probably take ‘em up on the offer.
[With a bit of effort, Kay hopped up onto the edge of the trailer’s roof, sitting happily a good — though not too large — distance from the ever-so-curious girl.]
That’s about right. The last few times I returned home, everything was pretty much the same as I remembered it being. [She ‘hmm’d’ quietly, leaning forward on her elbows. Just talking about the circumstances of her leaving and rearriving made her feel like she was missing something
because there’s a fourth wall in the way.]
It’s still really blurry, though. I can’t say for sure that time had frozen like you say, sorry. But hey, maybe you’ll find out for yourself one day.
[Homura’s eyes darted to the place where the loud voice came from - it definitely sounded familiar to her, and sure enough it was that thief girl. The one who somehow kept disappearing - Homura spoke down from the trailer roof to her]
Would you be able to tell me, with honesty, if you know a way out of here or not? Or do you just happen to be the luckiest (or unluckiest?) “clumsy thief” in history? [after all, depending on how you looked at it, maybe she didn’t want to leave, and even if she did, she was unlucky in being dragged back here so many times]
How many times does that make this.. two? Three?
Oh—! Miss Homura, right? It’s good to see you again! [She sounded as happy as ever. Oh well, even though her memory was muddled, Kay could never forget that troublesome girl even if she wanted to.]
Hey, if I knew that, I wouldn’t be here, would I? I’m pretty sure it’s three by now. Maybe the Ringmaster just really likes my company! [As disorienting as that thought was, at least it was a silver lining of sorts. Maybe.]
Eheh, you know what they say, third time’s the charm! Maybe I’ll get some actual time back home for once if I can get out of here again.
[Tapping on the side of the trailer, taking a moment to make sure it wasn’t about to collapse on top of her anytime soon, Kay stared up at the girl quizzically.]
Mind if I join you up there?
[Homura begrudgingly stepped outside the trailer. As the prom was finally over, her black dress was nowhere to be seen. Most likely stored somewhere very safe for potential future use - the thought of which made her want to smile
In any case, as the atmosphere of the prom disappeared, so did most of the friendliness she showed on the night. She had already decided she would be more friendly to those who needed it, but she wasn’t sure where to begin or how to properly hold herself.
As her head still felt so fatigued from
the HM sighthe prom, she decided it wouldn’t be efficient to immediately resume her business. She swiftly perched herself on top of a trailer and simply watched the people go about their lives]
[The first job of a skilled would-be thief upon arriving — or rearriving — at a relatively unknown area: scout said area for potential allies, enemies, recovery areas and places that just looked fun to hang around.
Kay had spent a large majority of her short time at the circus re-examining the circusgrounds, making a note of any changes and the newly added trailers, but even the most devoted disciples tended to get tired. Her roommates weren’t anywhere to be seen as far as she knew, so the thought of sneaking into her own trailer without any disturbances was beginning to sound better by the minute.]
[Skulking through the arrangement of less than desirable housing establishments, if they could even be called that, her eyes fell on the dejected looking girl sitting in a rather odd place, all things considered. Cue inquisitive instincts.]
Oh! H-Hey there! [Though it was still dimmer than the thief was used to and what little she could make out of the figure sitting atop the trailer, running into a strange wasn’t something she was afraid of; she was still feeling disoriented and addled from being dragged back to the accursed circus, and anybody was as good as anybody else.
Pulling her scarf tighter around her neck, Kay shuffled closer curiously, waving an arm with quiet laughter.]
Goodness - you’ve been here twice before? Which means you somehow got out…!
(This gives him more hope he can somehow think of a way out through his investigations.)
Myself? I’ve been here about three days, myself, so I suppose I am like you in the case we are both ‘new’ here.
That’s right, but I have no idea how. It’s like my memory just suddenly stops right there! One moment I was here, and the next, back home like it was all just a dream. I was pretty sick for a while afterwards, though… So I don’t mind staying here for a bit longer this time.
You sound like the sort of person who’s already used to all this, Mister Jowd. I bet you’re a great detective back in your world!
Clay grinned widely back at her and gave her hand a warm, manly handshake. “Nice to meet ya, Kay! Nice an’ chipper! Good yer in warm spirits even here!”
Kay took a moment to gawk at the other man once their handshake was all well and done; nice and strong, she was a bit envious. Nevertheless, she nodded happily, smiling as usual. “You know it! No need to be so gloomy just because I’m in a gloomy place, right? It looks like it could use a bit of the ol’ Kay charm, actually.”