An Excerpt from Titi Rina's Journal

She’s finally asleep. Ana was so full of energy I wondered if she’d stay up all night. But she’s out like a light now, looking like any other little girl, dreaming peaceful little girl dreams.

I thought Fernando and Angela would be the hardest to convince to let her stay over, but they were so thrilled to have an evening to themselves that it didn’t seem to matter that they normally think of me as flighty and possibly not the best influence for their imaginative daughter. No, it was Yuuki who had difficulty letting Ana stay by herself. He (She? I honestly don’t know. Ana does but she refused to tell me when I asked. She said that the fox spirit likes making people figure out riddles on their own) trusts my love for my niece but had doubts about my ability to protect Ana in his/her absence. I demonstrated my skill with shields, showed all the wards I had in place and that finally seemed to suffice. Yuuki and Ajani are in Philly tonight, doing whatever fae in a city do.

I guess it’s fair to say I have my doubts about Yuuki. Oh I believe that there is genuine affection there, but how far can a creature known for tricks and general mischief be trusted with the welfare of a child? Ana adores Yuki. Even her choices in cartoons shows that (tonight’s feature was Ana’s choice – a Japanese cartoon where a little girl goes into a strange Japanese fae world with a giant bathhouse at its center). But does she know this world isn’t as cute as a cartoon one? And that for every Yuuki there are things that don’t care she’s only a little girl and wouldn’t hesitate to cause harm?

Tonight between cartoons, pizza, and toe nail painting I taught her how to ground, center and most importantly, shield. She took to it quickly, just another fun game she and her crazy aunt play. I tucked her in and reminded her to do it again before sleeping because it was good idea to help keep nightmares away. She told me she never worried about that before. Yuuki always keeps her safe. And she knew I would too.

I wish I had a Yuuki growing up. I wish I had someone to talk to when there were things and feelings coming from nowhere that scared me no matter how many times I’d say the rosary. Until I learned how to shield I saw the things around me as terrifying. There was no doting fox fae standing at the gate making sure the dead were at least polite when trying to get my attention. I’m looking out the window now. The usual assortment of ghosts are flitting around, trying to get someone to listen, annoyed that a shield keeps them from me. They’re a mostly harmless, though annoying bunch. One, a little bolder than the others floats right to the edge of my shield and puts a finger to her lips. I don’t know if Ana has a hard time sensing the dead, the same way I have a hard time properly sensing fae, but tonight is not the night to find out. I let them know that for tonight at least, I’m not taking any visitors, even the ones I do know, no matter how quiet they promise to be.


I think I’ll check on Ana one more time before I go to sleep.



Song Choice: Dragon Boy from the Spirited Away soundtrack




This bit of flash fiction was written as a response to the picture prompt given by Magpie Tales. For previous stories about Ana and Yuuki, check here


29 comments:

  1. A creative and quite intriguing response to the prompt.

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    1. Thank you. I loved the prompt but wasn't sure where to go with it until some inspiration hit for this short bit that works as an extra to a series of stories I've written.

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  2. Another great one about my fave characters of yours. It's amazing what can come out of a photo prompt, isn't it?

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    1. The prompt was a very spur of the moment thing. I knew where my next Yuuki story was going (Rina's mention of Yuuki and Ajani being in Philadelphia that evening) and something in this picture sparked me to think a bit about Ana's aunt and who she was. Glad you enjoyed this. :)

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  3. Unique tale.

    Thanks for visiting.

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    1. Thank you. It's a bit of a snippet in a series of stories I've been writing.

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  4. What a fabulous first read for me.....and I always enjoy the added musical touch. Too few people do it. Including me!

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    1. Thanks! Quite a few times when I'm working on a story there will be a bit of music stuck in my head that feels right. This one is my favorite from the Spirited Away soundtrack. If you liked this one, you might like the earlier stories I've written in this series. Just look under Yuuki or Ana in the Link section or click on the link I added right above the picture prompt. :)

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  5. Replies
    1. Thanks! I enjoyed the chance to use a bit of flash fiction to look at the story from another angle. Glad you enjoyed it!

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  6. intriguing story, I am not familiar with the series but, I enjoyed what I just read.

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    1. Thanks! If you are interested in the stories that lead to this point, you can you to http://kestrilsrhythmsandgroove.blogspot.com/search/label/Yuuki, start from the bottom and work up.

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  7. It's fascinating and very creepy, to imagine the dead crowding up to the edges of her ward... Very well described!

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    1. It's macbre, but part of me finds it humorous as well - it must be tedious for them milling around like that.

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  8. I just love these stories! Can't wait to read more of the aunt's back story!

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    1. Its funny how the more I write about these characters, the bigger I find their world is!

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  9. I think it's interesting that you're using the prompts to write flash fiction as an ongoing story. I could feel the desire to connect.

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    1. I agree. Reading this piece makes me want to know everything about Titi Rina's family, especially her remarkable niece. Why do the parents have some doubts when it comes to the aunt's judgement? Who are these fae that protect the girl? Why are the dead setting vigil outside Rina's house? So much here...

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  10. Well, only this story is part of an ongoing series of stories. Last week's was a stand alone (LOL, that one came completely out of left field!) and I wrote poetry for the last two Magpie Tales prompts I participated in before that. Just something about this picture put me in mind of that world and made we want to write a quick bit from the perspective of a minor character.

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  11. I FRIGGIN LOVE SPIRITED AWAY. DID WE JUST BECOME BEST FRIENDS??

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    1. Spirited Away is one of my all time favorite movies. I pretty much love Miyazaki's works.

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  12. Rommy, this is fantastic. I love what brews in Rina's head. I want to know everything about her (especially how she grounds herself). I felt her pain when she wished she had a protector growing up... Now, I can't help but want for that story. She seems to have such a deep soul, and I really want to see how she kept it together while the world---physical and spiritual--hammered at her, and she had to learn how to shield from harm on her own.

    Yum, yum, yum! ♥

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    1. Thanks! I'm pretty stoked that I keep finding more and more to play with in this world. It's like I write one story and three more ideas pop up when I'm done, like mushrooms after a rainstorm.

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  13. What a wonderful story though my first reading of your characters, you managed to pull me into the relationships pretty quickly.. The last sentence really was an eye-opener for me.

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    1. Thank you! I'm glad I was able to sketch out the characters with this bit of short fiction. It was a fun exercise.

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  14. lovely write up there!! i like the way you combine ur characters for the prompts!!

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    1. Thanks! This one just seemed to go with the world I was creating with some of my short stories, so I decided to go with it. :)

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