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Tue Aug 11 22:18:04 PDT 2009


acted even just a little bit more like angels.  But I would not ever stand
up against Father.  If He wished to keep His works hidden then it was my
job as one of those works to hide.  I picked up the book and continued
reading.

Sometime later I heard a sound and looked up at my door.  Mr. Himoto was
standing there in loose clothing.  He had a fuzz on his throat and cheeks.

"Have you been up all night reading?"

"No, I had a problem while sleeping."

"Is there some problem with the bed?"

"It isn't a problem on Earth."

"Oh," Mr. Himoto stood there for a moment then said, "You shouldn't sleep
in your school clothes."

"I'll take them off then."

"I mean my daughter left behind her PJs," He walked to the closet, slid the
door open and pulled out a hanger with clothes in a different style on
them.

"Very well," I took the hanger then put it down on the bed so I could have
both hands free to remove my school outfit.

"Stop!  I mean there isn't time to try them on now.  We need to get ready
for school.  So get washed up."

"Wash up?"

"I'll show you," He led me back to the room I had used a few hours before
and indicated a separate area to the side, "This is the shower.  You
activate this control for the hot water then when the water is too hot you
activate this control for the cold water.  Apply enough water to get your
body wet then turn off the water and use this to create a foam on your body
then use the water again to rinse that off."

"Then I'll use this other item to wash my hair?"

"Yes, that's the shampoo my daughter liked."

"Why do you need to be so careful to turn the water off each time?"

"There is a drought."

"A drought?"

"The water we use comes from the natural environment.  The more we use the
less there is for plants and animals."

"Oh!"  I hadn't considered that my presence here would be destructive to
Father's works.

"Using a little is fine.  And cleanliness is next to godliness."

"Really?"  How would cleaning a human's body move their soul any closer to
Father?

"Just keep the curtain closed when you are using the shower then use a
towel to dry yourself afterwards.  Now go get another school outfit and put
it on this hook, along with your underwear so you can change after your
shower."

"The top part of the underwear does not fit me."

"I'll bring you one of my wife's bras."

I used the shower.  The "hot" water was quite cold at first, but quickly
warmed up to a comfortable level.  I didn't need to use the cold water at
all.  The entire experience was somehow very familiar, but I found myself
switching from using my left hand to my right hand whenever my mind
wandered.

As I dried myself I noticed that the mirror had become clouded so I rubbed
the towel on it to clear it up.  The bra Mr. Himoto had offered fit much
better than the one I had tried the previous morning.  With the complete
outfit in place I studied my reflection then reached for a brush to work my
hair into shape.

As I left the bathroom I followed an unfamiliar scent to the room we had
eaten in the previous night.

"Have a seat," Mr. Himoto was working with a pot, "I admit it isn't any
good.  I've only ever cooked for one, but I've had some practice over the
past several months."

He served me a breakfast with rice, soup and fish, "Let me know if you hate
it and I'll arrange something else for tomorrow," Then he went back to his
room.

There was a folded stack of papers there.  I read them while eating.  It
was a chronicle of recent events, near and far, in words and pictures along
with notices of upcoming events, such as specials on appliances and
clothing.  Whatever these specials where, they didn't seem especially
noteworthy or threatening.  As for the rest, there could only be one
explanation, "Demons."

"What was that?"  Mr. Himoto had returned, in his suit.  His face no longer
had the fuzz.

"Your world is overrun with demons."

"And that's why you're here."

"Yes," But to commit such evil there would have to be a great multitude of
them.  Whatever the odds, I would not cause Father shame.

"Well, let's get ready for school,"  He held up an item I had spotted in my
room, but not investigated, "I put in the books you'll be using this
semester, along with your gym clothes."

I stepped out of the car and into the crowd of students.  I spotted one I
knew, "Ichiru!" I waved to him.

"Uh, Miss Himoto."

"Did you have pleasant dreams last night?"

"Um, yes," He blushed and turned away.

"Good to hear it,"  I turned to see where he was looking.

"Uh Miss Himoto, how do you know my name?"

"You told me last night in your --"  I noticed that some of the other
students had stopped and were listening.  Best not to reveal my abilities,
"-- room."

Some of the other boys stopped to crowd even closer.

I decided that I was drawing too much attention so walked to the classroom
and took my seat.

After lunch we had gym.  I went with the other girls and changed into the
gym outfit I had been given.

This time the activity was not the basketball.  Instead mats had been
placed on the floor and wooden structures were placed on these.  The girls
took turns running up to these structures and balancing on them at strange
angles.

I had been at the end of the line, but when I came to the front the coach
said, "Dawn, show us what you can do."

I ran forwards and attempted to judge how high a human could jump.  I
bounced on the wooden platform then twisted three times around in midair,
aiming for the suspended beam.

I found I was coming down a little faster than I had intended.  I did not
wish to damage the beam so I bent my left arm slightly and let my elbow
bend as I landed.  I raised myself on my left palm and looked at the coach,
"Is this okay?"

"How did you?"

"She has been training in acrobatics all her life in Brazil," It was that
cool breeze again.

The coach and the girls all blinked in unison.  Why were humans acting in
synchronization like this?

There were shrill sounds behind me so I twisted around on my fingers to
look.  It was the boys, they had stopped their activity and some of them
were making the shrill sounds by tightening their lips.  I tried to copy
the motion, but noticed that my body was still turning.

My fingers were losing their grip on the beam so I pushed away from it then
flipped over to land upright.

"Look at that," One of the boys said, "She landed on her feet, just like a
cat."

"That's enough Takehoso,"  The coach walked over to that boy, "One more
time and you're in detention."

That night I returned to the dream of the car drive.

I attempted to leap out, but I found myself restrained, "I'm stuck?"

"Who is that?"  My lips formed the words, but the voice was not mine.

"I am Dawn,"  Best not to reveal my true nature.

"Finally somebody who responds to me.  It's been hell sitting here.  No
matter how much I scream, those two never respond.  Not that they listened
to me when I was alive.  I'm dead, aren't I?"

"I do not know.  What is your relationship to Mr. Himoto?"

"Those are my parents."

"Are you their only daughter?"

"Last I heard."

"He said you were beyond objections."

"That's a relief.  I've been worried that I was laying in a coma, playing
the same events over and over again.  So what kind of boy spirit are you?"

"I'm a girl."

"With that accent?"

"I picked it up from a boy."

"Okay, this is officially too weird for me to be making it up.  I always
thought that death was it, end of story, but I guess I was wrong.  So what
are you doing here?"

"I don't know why I'm stuck in your dream."

"So, do you go around poking into dreams usually?"

The streetlight flashed in the window and I saw the girl's face reflected
in the window.  I'd seen it someplace else before, "No I came to your world
to--  I'm staying with your father."

"My world?  Yeah, I guess you are a spirit of some sort.  If that old letch
is putting you up then you must be pretty hot."

"How did you know my element is fire?"

"Heh, good one.  Well don't worry, this dream will be over real soon now.
You mentioned my father, how about her?"

"I haven't met that woman."

"Well that's one less person on my to-do list.  Brace for impact."

"What?"

Mr. Himoto struggled with the controls.  The car lurched and skidded.  I
was pressed against the side of the car and then something came crashing
through the door.  I was pinned in place and my limbs wouldn't answer my
frantic efforts to escape.  I saw Mr. Himoto crawl out of his window,
"Daddy, daddy!"  I screamed feebly.  Then the flames washed over me and
they burned.  How could fire burn me?

I woke screaming.

"Dawn!", Mr. Himoto ran into my room and grabbed me, "What is it?  What's
wrong?"

I leaned against him for a moment as I struggled to get my breathing under
control, then I pushed him away, "I know where I've seen her."

"Her?"  He followed me down the stairs.

I turned on the light in the living room and picked up the picture with the
three of them, "Who is this girl?"

"That was Hakumei, my daughter."

"She died in the car crash, didn't she?"

"Yes."

"And this woman was her mother?  And she also died then?"

"Yes,"  He looked down at the floor.

"Thank you,"  I put the picture back, then walked past him to my room and
shut the door.

I spent the rest of the night lying in bed and staring at the faint light
in the curtains, but sleep eluded me.

The next morning Mr. Himoto said nothing as he made breakfast and later
drove us to the school.

At lunch the girl from my class who had commented on my basketball toss
brought her tray to the table I had sat at, "What's with your uncle?  He
said you were too busy to join the Basketball team.  Is he forcing you to
work part time jobs?"

"Did you strain your brain again Yasuki?  You know I'm no good at sports."

"So you've been reading her diaries?  I guess dawn really does follow
twilight.  Fine, I won't ask again."

Where had that come from?  How did I know her name?  And the word she had
used for Twilight, it was Hakumei, the dead girl whose place I had taken.
I pondered going after Yasuki and offering an explanation, but I couldn't
explain it to myself.  Instead I waved to another I knew as he carried his
tray over to the tables, "Ichiru!"

"Miss Himoto,"  He took the seat I indicated.

"I need you to me a favor."

"Of course."

"Do you still have that candle I gave you in your dream?"

"Yes, it was in my dreams again last night.  How did you do that?"

"Can you light it tonight please?"

"Sure."

That night I lay in bed, unable to force myself to sleep, despite my
fatigue.  I got up, turned on the light and picked up the book on Brazil.
I read it for a few hours until my sight got blurry.  I put it to one side
and dozed off.  I found myself back inside the dream of the car ride.

"So,"  My body, well hers really, straightened in the seat as Hakumei's
spirit noticed my presence, "Are you back for another night of spills and
thrills?"

I ignored her and focused my attention as I searched for the faint spark.
There, I found it, "Goodbye,"  I jumped to the other dream.

"Hakumei!"  Ichiru had been sitting in front of the lit candle I had given
him, but now fell over backwards.

"Still on the floor worm?  And that's Upperclassman Himoto to you."

"It can't be you.  You're dead."

"Don't you know that anything is possible in a dream?"  She moved my, her,
body around to observe his room.  There had been some changes to his
conception of it in the past two days.  There were posters of me on the
walls.  Some of them mentioned concerts and in some I was posing near the
water in very skimpy tops and bottoms, hardly more than underwear.  On his
shelves there were small dolls of me in various strange outfits.

She stopped in front of a mirror.  It was her face and not mine, "Not bad
for a dead girl.  So how long have I been dead?"

"Six months."

"So you're in the same class as me now?  The same class I was in anyway."

"What happened to Dawn?"

I struggled for a moment then spoke, "I'm here."

"What, you again?"  Hakumei made a dismissive motion with her hand.

"Dawn is inside Hakumei?"

"Who gave you permission to say my first name?  The nerd in here is way too
thick.  Goodbye losers,"  She reached for the door.

"Wait," Ichiru raised his hand, "Don't!"

"Get lost worm.  I never want to see you again," Hakumei opened the door
and stepped out into darkness.

We two souls in one body fell and tumbled.  I tried to summon my wings of
fire, but could not break through her wall of panic.  After many minutes
she gathered her courage and awoke.

She sat up in her bed, "That was intense,"  She looked around her room
until her gaze settled on the mirror, "What?" My face looked at its
reflection in her surprise.

She stood and walked over to look very closely in the mirror, "Gold eyes?
Really?  And they're not even contacts?  And this red hair,"  She reached
up to push it back along my forehead, "No roots!  And are these real?"  She
felt at my chest then undid my top and bra to feel them again, "They are!
I may have died, but I've certainly gone to heaven."

The door to her room opened and her father looked in, "Dawn are you
alright?"

They both froze for a moment and then Hakumei spun my body away from his
gaze, "Eek!  Daddy you pervert!  I told you never to look in my room
again!"

"Sorry!"  He left and closed the door.

At breakfast she grimaced, "Daddy!  Why's the soup lukewarm?"

He checked his bowl, "It's not."

She bent my face down to her bowl and looked closely to watch the vapors
steaming off of it.  She stuck my finger in the bowl then licked it off and
raised the bowl to gulp it all down in a few seconds, "Neat!"

"Dawn, young ladies shouldn't eat like that."

"Who are you to tell me what to do, you dirty old man?"

"Sorry."

When he left to get his things she walked to the stove, turned on one of
the burners and stuck my finger into the flame.  It didn't hurt of course,
but the substance she had put on my fingernail smoldered.  She quenched
this by clinching my fist then rubbed my thumb against the finger,
"Wicked."  She shut off the flame and walked to the door, "Come on, you'll
be in trouble if you're late again."

At the school she stood by the main entrance and watched the other students
arrive.  Her emotions were overpowering, but there was no place to run from
them.

"Dawn!"  Ichiru walked up to us, "I'm sorry, there was some sort of mix-up."

"Get out of my sight worm,"  She pointed at him, "I never want to see you
again.  You know what?  Forget this.  There isn't anybody here I want to
see anyway,"  She walked out of the school.  Some of the other students
watched, but nobody said anything.

She walked back to her house and took out the key Mr. Himoto had given me
to open the door, "Where would he put it?", She walked into his room and
searched through the closet until she found a large cardboard box, "Yeah,
this is it,"  She searched through that until she found a black wig and
dark sunglasses.  Then she went back into the closet and pulled out a cloth
hat with a wide brim.

She returned to her room and stripped off the school uniform.  She turned
in front of the mirror and looked over the shape of my body, "This is so
cool.  I've got curves and looks, my vision's perfect and I feel stronger
and healthier than any day in my all so short and tragic life.  I know
exactly who I want to share this with.  Say, how strong am I?"  She knelt
down to leverage up her bed with one hand and then she slowly placed it
down on the floor again, "Yeah, no way am I going to waste my time going
though the same dumb classes again.  I've got the answer to everybody's
question and a body to die all over again for.  I'm going to rule this
world."

She changed into a dress from her closet then put on the wig, along with a
long coat, the sunglasses and hat.

She returned to her father's room and searched for a bit before finding
some money, then shoved the box of her mother's things back into the
closet.

She stepped out of the house and turned and walked away from the school.
She ran for several blocks until a woman stared at her, then she dashed
around a corner, stood straight and took a deep breath of air,  "I'm not
even winded!  I could be great at sports, not that it matters anymore!"
She laughed.

She walked for a few more blocks then turned and walked up to a house.  She
pressed the doorbell and waited a few minutes then knocked at the door,
"Nobody's home?  Well, I know where he likes to hang out."

She walked around the town for several hours, had lunch at a restaurant and
wound up sitting on a bench looking out over the river, "Well maybe he's
home now," She stood and turned the corner to see a girl and a boy who were
slightly older than me walking hand in hand.

"Her!  How could you choose her!"  Hakumei walked up to the couple and
slapped the girl so hard that she fell to her knees.

"What are you doing!"  The boy reached his hand out, but Hakumei grabbed
his arm and held it in place.  He put up his other arm but she grabbed that
and pushed him back against the wall.

Then she turned to the girl and said, "Get lost.  He's with me.  If you
stick around you'll get hurt."

The girl nodded silently, got to her feet and ran away.

"Who are you?"  The boy struggled against my strength.

Hakumei turned back to him and ran my lips up his throat and along his jaw
before settling on his lips.  She pressed my lips against his for several
seconds before suddenly releasing him and stepping back, "Who do you think
it is, lover?"

He dropped to the ground and looked up at us, "Hakumei?  It can't be,
you're dead!"

"Oh, I'm back from the dead and better than ever,"  She undid the belt on
her coat and opened it then undid the top few buttons on her dress to show
off my chest, "Like what you see?  It's all real."

He felt at his lips and sat there.

She redid the dress and coat then turned back to him, "Is your father still
part of the organization?"

He nodded.

"Great, let's go see him now.  I've got so much to tell him."

"I've got a part time job."

"When do you get off?"

"Nine pm."

"Okay, I'll go home and pack.  I'll see you at your father's restaurant at
ten."

He nodded and stood.  She moved forwards to kiss him again, then backed
off, "Don't leave me waiting lover,"  She turned and walked back to her
house.

Mr. Himoto's car was sitting in his driveway.  He was waiting in his living
room, "Where have you been?"

"None of your business."

"What was your connection to Sakurayama?"

"Ichiru?"

"He killed himself at school today."

Hakumei stopped in shock and I was able to reassert control of my own body,
"He was the boy I learned Japanese from.  Please excuse me as I am holding
a dangerous spirit that I cannot deal with on this plain.  I will explain
more in the morning."

I went up to my room, took off the hat, glasses, wig, coat and dress and
lay down on the bed.  With a vast exercise of will I kept her suppressed
and went to the land of sleep.

Next: Dawn ends Twilight


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