((You get used to Ayase okay.))
Madoka sighed, cursing herself. How in the world did she manage to walk into a witch’s barrier without even noticing it?! ‘It’s okay’, she consoled herself. ‘You’re still kinda new at this, and it couldn’t be helped…’
Still… the witch seemed familiar. Too familiar, as though they’d met before. Madoka gave her a polite smile, hoping not to anger her or anything. Suddenly, it clicked. …Kyouko? Despite being terrified, the pink-haired girl stammered out a reply, very narrowly avoiding addressing Ophelia by her human name. “I-I’m Madoka… Madoka Kaname… Um… What’s your name?”
Ophelia’s eyes narrowed to red slits. Her horse took a step forward, and then another, each hoof landing surprisingly lightly on the misty ground. Oh this was great, it was hilarious, it was Madoka of course…
"Ophelia," she said shortly. Names didn’t mean anything to her, honestly. "So what brings ya here, huh? Here to reap a Grief Seed? You’re gonna have to put up quite a fight to get mine.”
starlight-arrow started following you
neverending-melody started following you
Ophelia grinned darkly, leaning forward on her horse with an expression of great amusement on her face.
"Well, well, well…Who do we have here?"
((All these Sayakas.
Ophelia’s not complaining, she loves Sayakas.
Loves to beat them around.))
As they strode down into the depths of the church, a shiver went up the knight’s spine. The light was dim, and she was unable to see what lay ahead of them. The darkness that loomed before them continued to irritate her in an inexplicable way, and that only added to the slight sense of dread that she had felt upon arriving at the church.
It was only when Ophelia spoke did she realize that they had reached the bottom of the staircase. She glanced up into glistening red eyes, and the Magus felt her stomach twist at the question. “I— yeah, I’m ready.”
She strode in after the Witch, and jumped as the heavy doors slammed the only exit shut. Alarmed, she glanced back at the door and then at the Witch. Fangs were revealed as Ophelia spoke, the amusement made crystal clear in her expression.
Her blue eyes looked past the Witch, and stared at the objects before her. Puzzled, she took a few steps towards the Gems. It took her a moment to realize just what Ophelia had meant by calling the room her “trophy room.”
“What— What the… Ophelia, what did you do?”
A faint wave of nausea overtook the girl, and she realized that she had broken into a cold sweat. Palms were sweating as she could only stare back at the Gems that had been forcibly taken from their rightful owners.
Their Souls, their proof of contract, had become a trophy. The only evidence of their fight to keep their wishes alive were sitting here, within a hidden chamber of a church, all because a Witch had deemed it as a fitting trophy for each battle she won.
“How… Could you do something like this?”
Her voice was trembling; yet she wasn’t sure if it was from rage, or the sorrow she felt at seeing what had become of her friend. “Why would you do something like this when you were a Magi, too!? You know what these are— what they mean to everyone!” A fist was slammed against one wall, her head lowered so she wouldn’t have to stare at the objects before her.
Ophelia smirked, her eyes still distant and rather unfocused, yet still on Sayaka’s form.
"I told ya. I told ya, ya wouldn’t like it, didn’t I?"
She started to walk to one of the shelves, picking up a silver oval-shaped Soul Gem. “I remember her…she fought with a lance too, but guess who had a bit more skill?”
She tilted her head and smirked widely.
"Ya know why I take these things? Wanna guess? It’s not easy either, I mean fuck sometimes I’ve gotta really dig ‘em out. It gets messy. And I always want ‘em to shine.” She dragged her tongue across it, scraping dried blood, before placing it down.
"So whatcha gonna do now, huh? Gonna fight me and make me get rid of ‘em?"
She walked over to Sayaka with calm and precise steps, her eyes blazing darkly in the dim lighting of the trophy room.
"I know what they are. They’re Soul Gems, the true essence of a Magi. Now they’re mine. Fair’s fair. They came in here to use my Grief Seed and throw me away. I get to keep ‘em now. Took all of their corruption, made myself stronger with their despair. Did ‘em a favor, didn’t I?”
The last words were quiet.
“Wha— I’m not trying to fool anyone!” Sayaka huffed, as brows furrowed together in slight irritation. Hadn’t she just tried to make amends with the Wudan Witch? It had appeared as if things were going smoothly between the two, though it may have been naivety on her part. Sapphire eyes rolled, and arms folded across her chest. “I’m being serious. A promise is a promise, you know.”
And lately she had been making all sorts of promises to all kinds of people. The knight could only shake her head after listening to the witch scoff at her words, yet her expression reflected the confusion she felt upon hearing the church brought up in conversation once more.
“Huh? We’re going back…?”
Her gaze went from the Witch’s devious eyes to the hand extended down towards her. In the back of her mind, something told her to stop trusting Kyouko’s Witch incarnate. Feelings of doubt lingered within her head the longer it took her to decide on a course of action; yet her recklessness bested her. Sayaka grabbed the hand, and clumsily climbed onto the Witch’s steed. She glanced up at Ophelia, somewhat doubtful. “You sound like you really want me to stay away from you,” she mumbled, more than a little irritated with the others behaviors and words.
Unsure of what to do with her hands, she gripped onto the back of the Wudan Witch’s attire. To her surprise, the material was softer than she had expected. It certainly contrasted against the rough personality that Ophelia had.
"A promise is a promise," Ophelia repeated somewhat thoughtfully, her eyes drifting to some memory of hers before snapping back. She grinned wider still as Sayaka got rather ungracefully onto the back of her horse. She snapped the horse’s reins, causing it to break into a wild gallop, charging headlong into the undecipherable fog.
It never tripped once, or stumbled, nor slowed, despite the fact that they were practically running through clouds.
"I want ya to know what you’re gettin’ yourself into."
She refused to answer anything else Sayaka might have said until they had arrived back at the church itself. Any damage to its structure from earlier, flames and all, were no longer present.
The horse followed them as far as the great stairs of the place before pausing between the pews, its red eyes tracing Sayaka’s movements. Ophelia gestured for Sayaka to follow her around to a door hidden in the corners of the church. She threw it open and descended downwards, still not speaking.
The atmosphere became colder, the shadows thicker, but Ophelia and Sayaka were both able to see thanks to the flames that curled around her head and hair.
"Are ya ready?" She said at last, turning to face her. "To see my…collection?”
Another door was thrown open.
"Well, here it is!"
As soon as Sayaka stepped into the room, the door slammed shut behind them. A light came on, its source unknown.
And all along the walls were Soul Gems, hardly any in their actual egg form. They glowed dozens of colors, no two quite alike, in a variety of shapes. Crescents, hearts, stars, crosses, flowers, fire, droplets of water…
A maniacal light was in her eyes as she smirked darkly. “This…is my trophy room.”
The voice had finally physically appeared in front of the small girl, “K…Kyouko?” Yuma’s face twisted into horror and grief, ‘Was this really Kyouko?’
“This isn’t real… This isn’t real!” She shouted at the top of her lungs before turning on her heels, blindly taking off in the other direction. Her sobs and heavy breathing filled the air as countless thoughts ran through her head.
The other was right, Yuma specialized in healing magic and even the Familiars were almost too strong for her. The small Magi wondered what would become of her if she was successfully defeated by the Witch… The Witch that was Kyouko.
She let out a scream as she tripped over an unseen object. Laying on the ground, Yuma curled up in a ball and wailed like the child she was. ‘What was going on?’
Ophelia groaned and shook her head, walking slowly but steadily in the direction that Yuma had gone. Like all Witches, she could sense intruders in her domain. Oktavia’s senses stretched as far as that room with the TV screens of her old life, but Ophelia could sense every corner of her fog-filled Barrier.
She found Yuma curled up on the ground in a miserable crying ball, and she closed her eyes, exhaling. Her frustration made her want to lash out, but she couldn’t do that to this girl.
"Don’tcha know better than to leave yourself all vulnerable in a Barrier?" Her voice was as normal as she could make it. Her usual voice differed from her human form’s in the fact that it was scratchier, like crackling fire.
Despite the other’s change in tone, her smile never faltered. A finger was extended as it traced the metallic linings of the hair pin, the metal surprisingly cool to the touch. A shoulder was shrug as she glanced back into fiery eyes, and her smile widened into a full on grin.
“It doesn’t matter to me,” Sayaka stated, her tone resolute. “Kyouko is Kyouko, no matter what happened to her. Sure, you turned into Ophelia, but that doesn’t matter to me.”
There was a pause as she contemplated what Ophelia may have done, and she realized that it was a thought that she shouldn’t dwell on. Rather than continue to press the matter further, she allowed it to pass as she tried to keep her bravado.
“If I can’t accept what you’ve done, then I’d be lying to the both of us if I said that I accept you for being you,” the girl added. “Yeah, I’ll do my best to be there for the other Kyoukos, but that includes you, you know. I promise I’ll try and take care of them and you.”
“And you know me. I keep my promises.” The knight couldn’t help but laugh a bit as she stepped away from the Witch. “Do you want me to make some kinda oath as a knight? Because I can do that for you.”
Ophelia’s eyes watched Sayaka’s fingers as they touched her Grief Seed. She didn’t feel anything of course, and Grief Seeds weren’t so simple to break as Soul Gems were. She recalled a point where the hair pin had once been shining gold and noble crimson—
She suddenly closed her hands tightly around the black and gray object with a scowl.
"The fuck do ya think you’re foolin’, huh?" An eyebrow was arched. "You’re tellin’ me you’re gonna just accept everythin’ I did, just like that?"
A cruel smirk appeared on her face.
"Huh…if ya wanna try and keep your word, I’ve got somethin’ to show ya back at the church then." She shoved her hair pin back into place, quickly springing up onto her horse. She offered Sayaka her hand after a moment. "I’m bettin’ that once ya realize some of the shit I’ve pulled, you’re gonna get pretty upset with me, and I won’t have to knock ya out like I did last time to get ya to this Barrier’s edge."
Which was what she wanted, she wanted Sayaka to go out of her Barrier and stay out—even if it hurt.
bileus-the-creator started following you
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Ophelia’s horse stepped quietly through the foggy Barrier, its flaming eyes flickering.
"More visitors, huh?" Ophelia’s taunting voice called out to her guests. "What brings ya here?"
It was a bit strange to see the other shy away, especially after the air of power the Witch had been carrying throughout most of their time together. The beginnings of a triumphant smirk crept onto the Magus’ face, and she let out a soft laugh.
“You’re probably right, I might really be the most stubborn Magi ever,” Sayaka agreed, unable to mask the relief that had washed over her. At first she had thought that Ophelia would try and run, but it seemed that things were going much more smoothly than she could have hoped for. “There’s just no way I’m letting you get away from me that easily, you know.”
A wink and her smirk went from triumphant to a smile of reassurance. “If… you ever feel lonely, or if you ever need someone, I’ll be here for you,” she added, voice barely above a whisper. “I might be an idiot, but I’m a loyal one at that.”
“I promise, no matter what happens, I’ll always be there for you.”
She was quiet for a moment as she contemplated over what to say next. A few ideas popped into her mind, ways to reassure the Witch that this was a promise that she would be sure to keep. Yet she was sure that a couple of them would be instantly shot down as soon as she vocalized them.
Instead of sharing them with the Witch, she waited to see if the promise would be enough for the Wudan Witch. If not, then the ideas would come rushing out.
She made a low, disgruntled, sound. A sort of exasperated huff. Her eyes flickered to Sayaka and away again.
"I’m not questionin’ that," she said at last. "You’re a stubborn moron, but you’re a good friend and all of that crap. When you’re not spiralin’ down into despair." She smirked briefly, fangs flashing, but it faded again, to be replaced with a thoughtful expression.
"You know though, that’s exactly why I don’t want ya here. You’ve got better things to do. Go help some other Kyouko that wasn’t dumb enough to let their Soul Gem burst to pieces like I did."
She reached up into her hair and removed her hair pin again, still staying close to Sayaka, and showed the other her Grief Seed once more.
"Ya had a bone to pick with me over how I did things as a Magi, if ya knew what I do as a Witch…There’s a difference ‘tween Kyouko and Ophelia, y’know." Her voice carried a tone of warning. "Ya might find ya don’t like ‘Ophelia’ very much."
Her horse suddenly whinnied loudly, as if in response to its owner.