Saiyuu no Ryouko: The Continuing Adventures of Yuriko
The Story So Far: It's the last push. For good or ill – and Yuriko is not sure which it will be, there's one more rehearsal, then the tour is upon them. If anything is left to break, it had better do it now.
Volume 5, Issue 5
"Waiting For A Sign"
"You don't have to come with me, you know. I'm sure you're very busy and would have to rearrange something to make time."
"Nice try, darling. " Midori put her hands on Yuriko's shoulders and leaned her head on the singer's back.
"But you love surprises," Yuriko continued, turning around to embrace her lover. "Why not come Thursday night and let it all be a surprise?"
"Normally, I love surprises. Somehow, in this one thing, I want to know what to expect."
"Don't you think you're being unreasonable?"
"Absolutely. Don't you think you're being shifty?"
"Definitely." Yuriko pulled away with a wry expression. "It feels embarrassing, somehow to have you there."
"Look at that. You're blushing and everything. How cute!" Midori poked the blonde's cheek gently, following it with a quick kiss. "Now I definitely have to be there."
Yuriko blew out a breath in exasperation. "Fine, but don't blame me when you get jealous." She leaned down with a salacious expression. "I'm very sexy out there."
"I know it," Midori breathed. "You're very sexy right here too…"
Their kiss was slow and sweet. Neither woman rushed to end it.
When they finally moved away from one another, Yuriko averted her eyes. "Seriously, Midori. Please don't…."
"Don't what?" The writer's voice instantly became sharp.
Yuri gestured in frustration. "Don't hate me for what you see out there? I guess, is what I want to say."
Midori's expression was complex. What," she began slowly, "what do Kishi-san and Tsukiyama-san say about it?"
"About…about me and Mayumi-san? Um….I don't…." Yuriko thought back on the last conversation with her managers, past and future. Then her face cleared. Nodding, she gave Midori a relieved smile. "Kishi-san said, ‘That's better.'"
"Well, then" Midori spun around to finish getting dressed. "There's nothing for either of us to worry about."
That had been what she said. Midori always felt that she was a perceptive person, and an honest one. But as she watched Yuriko moving Mayumi across the stage with barely contained sexual desire coming off them in waves, she had to admit that perhaps, this one time, she had overestimated herself badly.
She couldn't stop watching, and she couldn't look away. It was horrible and beautiful and my god Yuri was so sexy…. She watched, repulsed and stimulated, as Yuriko ran a hand along Mayumi's hair, holding one of the strands lightly, kissing it, while never taking her eyes off the other woman. The tension burned through the hall. There was a heightened kind of attention, almost akin to that of a porn theater, as everyone eyes were focused solely on the stage, their own arousal a backdrop for the show. Midori shifted uncomfortably, knowing that arousal was exactly what she felt. The two women on the stage were on fire – and perfect together. Mayumi's body fit into Yuriko's arms, their voices met parted with precision and harmony. It was as embarrassing for her to watch as if she had walked in on them together in bed.
They were nearing the moment of climax. Midori found herself digging her nails into her palms, as the dance steps drew the two of them closer. This was it. She forced herself to watch as they looked at one another, moved close and appeared to kiss. She kept telling herself it was fake. Yuri had assured her that their lips did not touch. But did it matter? The heat, the electricity between her and Yuriko, had it ever been half that intense? Midori felt tears rising and stomped down on herself brutally.
"Wow," the woman next to Midori breathed. The writer jumped, startled out of her hypnotic state to find that Nami was standing at her side. She looked sheepish at having spoken. "Sorry," she muttered.
Midori shook her head, relieved. Catching the corner of one eye with a knuckle, she banished all negative thoughts. "No, it is ‘wow.' She warned me that it was. But…." She sighed . "Right now, I really hate that woman."
The two of them watched as the dancers moved away, their voices blending together perfectly. As they moved back into each other's range, followed by the back-up dancers, and the song drew to a close, Midori sighed again. "It'll be difficult, but I'll have to rearrange my whole schedule."
"Why's that?" Nami asked politely, her eyes fixed on the stage.
"I've got to go on tour with you all. There is no way I can leave the two of them alone for one second off stage, is there?"
Nami laughed again. Then realized that Midori hadn't smiled. "Are you serious?"
"No," the writer said petulantly. "But I wish I were." She felt a gentle, hesitant pat on her arm, looked down, then up at the young assistant. "I'd ask you to keep your eye on her, but you're no good. You're half gaga over her yourself." She hmphed. "I'm going to have to hire a gay man as babysitter."
"I'll do my best anyway." Nami promised. "Tsukiyama-san seems pretty tough."
"Somebody has to be." Midori hmphed once more. She could see the managers from where she stood, but did not approach them. They appeared to be in the middle of an intense conversation. Tsukiyama looked a little amused, but Kishi's expression was the same as ever. Midori wished she could feel more comfortable with the two, but always felt like there was a wall between her and the managers. She knew they cared for Yuriko and would take care of her, but she assumed that her place in Yuri's life precluded them ever being truly friendly. As if she had somehow heard Midori's thought, the younger of the two looked up and caught her eye, then nodded. To Midori's surprise, Tsukiyama bowed slightly to Kishi, and picked her way across the hall to where Midori stood.
"Well?" Tsukiyama asked, without preamble. Her gesture made it plain that she referred to the couple on stage.
"I hate it," Midori replied bitterly.
"Excellent," Tsukiyama smiled, the first smile Midori had ever seen on the woman. "We were hoping that you'd feel that wa…"
There was a sudden shriek of metal and the sound of glass cracking, shattering and falling to the floor.
Yuriko and Mayumi stopped where they stood, their arms instinctively covering their own heads, as they ducked away from the falling glass and metal.
There was screaming, and dancers ran towards the side of the stage as another shower of glass began. Midori shouted, but her voice became drowned out in the noise, as one of the striplights swayed crazily, then dropped to the stage, dragging wires and curtains with it, and sending a spray of shrapnel across the stage, into the wings and audience.
Midori found herself moving towards the stage before she fully realized what was happening. There was a tug on her arm, then a jerk as a second pair of hands pulled at her. She turned to see both Nami and Tsukiyama holding her.
"Stay here!" Tsukiyama shouted, over the noise. "Stay here!"
"I have to…"
"She's okay!" Nami screamed, digging her heels in. "She and Mayumi-san got off the stage before it came down!"
Midori was breathing hard, and everything in her argued that she should break away and find Yuri, but she forced herself to stop where she was.
"I'm okay," she said, not caring if anyone heard her. "Just find her," she turned to look at the other woman. "Find her!"
"No need," Kishi's rough voice came from behind them all. "They are safely in their dressing rooms, and security guards have been set outside. Go around the side entrance," she nodded to Midori.
The writer didn't stop to ask anything more. The entire theater could have been going up in flames, but she didn't care. She could hear sirens approaching, as she cleared the front door of the hall, not stopping as she ran past other people running in the opposite direction.
Around the side of the building, and through the side entrance, barely stopping long enough for the guard to swipe her through. She ran down the long corridor, then around to the back of the theater and the dressing rooms.
In front of Yuriko's dressing room, a security guard stopped her briskly. Gasping for breath, she showed her ID, waiting impatiently as the guard checked his list laboriously. "Yuri!" she shouted. The guard held up a hand to stop this clearly hysterical woman. The door behind him opened. Haru shoved the guard aside, escorting Midori in, then leaving the two of them alone.
"Yuri!" Midori finally allowed the panic she'd been fighting off to win. "Yuri! She raced into the room, throwing her arms around her lover, as tears flowed freely.
"I'm okay, I'm okay." Yuriko stoked the writer's hair, and squeezed her back as hard as she could. "I don't think anyone was hurt – not more than a scratch, anyway." She lifted a hand in explanation. On it, there were several shallow cuts. "Look, I'm okay."
But the tears did not stop. As panic waned, hysteria took its place. Midori clutched Yuriko tightly, her hands clenched in the singer's blouse. Emotions she had held bottled up for too long overflowed.
"Don't go," she spoke into Yuri's chest. "Please, don't go. Please." Sobs wracked Midori, as her voice became shriller and more insistent. "Don't go! Don't leave me!" She bawled into her lover's chest. "Please, please don't go."
Yuriko began to shake slightly, as her own control slipped away and tears rose to her eyes. Wordlessly, she tightened her arms around Midori's shoulders, pressing her lips into the other woman's dark hair as they cried.
To Be Continued
Saiyuu no Ryokou, all characters and situations copyright E. Friedman and Yurikon LLC. All Rights Reserved.