The More They Stay The Same

Madoka and Homura take some time to sort things out and gather their thoughts. Plushies and cuddles are involved.

Date: 2018-04-28
Pose Count: 10
Homura Akemi 2018-04-28 06:09:14 90876
    Homura had put this off long enough. From what Madoka had said over the phone, her family wouldn't be too upset... but one does not vanish with a beloved daughter without apologizing formally to the parents. At the very least, Homura doesn't.

    When she arrived at the Kaname household, she was let in. She got on her hands and knees, nose to the ground, bowing as low as she possibly could before Junko and Tomohisa Kaname. The whole thing was her fault. It was her idea to take Madoka sailing. It was her fault for underestimating the weather's ability to damage their craft. Even if she knew coming here that they wouldn't hold a grudge, it simply isn't proper to not apologize.

    After all of that was handled, Homura was allowed to go to Madoka's room, and Homura climbed the stairs leading to her beloved's room, looking just a little sad the whole time. She knocked politely before opening the door, and then let herself in. She was used to being invited here, and she had already called ahead of time, so she assumed it was okay to come.

    Homura reached up into her silky hair, combed her fingers through her black locks, but instead of her usual too-cool hairflip she seems to be doing this mostly as a form of stress relief. She doesn't say much, just taking a moment to look at what Madoka's doing.
Madoka Kaname 2018-04-28 06:22:55 90877
    It had been a very tearful reunion when Madoka came home. Her parents had never given up hope she was alive but after a year and a half with nothing to show other than a sailboat rental things were looking grim. And then Madoka just came home one day seemingly no worse for the wear and with some long tale of getting lost at sea after a storm and then eventually stranded for a very long time. It took hours to get her parents to stop clinging to her, and to an extent she knew they would always be more protective of her after this.

    She really hated lying to her parents, and it all felt so strange too, having them treat her like she'd been gone so long when to her it had been a mere week, enough to want to see her Mama and Papa again but not enough to strain too hard at her heartstrings, especially when she was quickly becoming more independent-- or at least more dependent on Homura than her parents.

    The one thing she made sure to slip into her story that wasn't absolutely necessary was that Homura had saved her life. Partly this was to alleviate any blame they might place on her, because Madoka wouldn't have been going on a sailboat trip in the first place without Homura. More importantly though was that Homura actually had saved her life on many, many occasions and this was one way for her family to appreciate Homura for things the veteran Puella had done for their daughter that they could otherwise never know about.

    After going home Madoka hadn't even considered leaving the house the next day, which made it one of the longest times Madoka had been away from Homura in a while. She knew how her family was going to feel though, and made an effort to be around them all day, helping them and talking with them and catching up.

    When Homura came over Junko and Tomohisa weren't expecting as elaborate an apology as Homura offered, but accepted it as gracefully as they could. The truth was though they weren't expecting it it went a long way to make them feel better, and Homura showing such honest and adamant regret from what had happened made it hard to hold any kind of grudge against her. Though there would be wounds difficult to heal simply having Madoka back would make it easier, and it didn't take long for her parents to point out that Homura was a victim in all of this too.

    "Come in!" Madoka calls when Homura knocks on the door, smiling towards it as it opens. She's laying on her bed, wearing a now several year old pair of yellow pajamas that still fit her, because she hasn't actually aged very much at all. She's on her side and in her arms is held a very large stuffed shark which she's clinging close to herself, resting her head upon it.

    Madoka's room hasn't changed at all. It's been preserved almost like a time capsule, save for the fact it's been kept clean and clear of dust. The stuffed animals have been moved around a fair bit, probably at the advent of some surface cleaning or another, but walking into the room it wouldn't be hard to forget it'd been nearly a year and a half since either of them had been inside it.

    "I think Matilda missed me," Madoka tells Homura as she walks in, pink eyes turning to Homura's black hair as it raises and then falls back behind her. "I think I might have missed her too, even if I didn't know it." She nuzzles her head against the nose and fuzzy, toothy mouth of the huge plushie, reaching out towards Homura afterwards in a beckoning sort of manner.
Homura Akemi 2018-04-28 06:36:34 90878
    Homura thinks that Madoka's parents are very generous, and in this case she doesn't take it for granted. She thanks them for their kind words before heading up.

    As for independence, well, true independence is a fantasy. Even Homura depends upon the Yakuza and JSDF to have weapons and ammo for her to steal.

    As Homura's purple eyes fall upon Madoka's yellow pajamas, the girl pauses for a moment, then smiles. If there is anything in this world that could make her happy, it's the cute little angel right in front of her. Her eyes dart towards the shark plushie that Madoka is holding onto, and her smile gets just a little wider. The veteran is quietly thankful that Madoka's family hasn't decided to clean out her room.

    Homura walks towards Madoka with a soft, gentle smile. "I can hardly blame her. A year and a half without you must be unbearable." As Madoka beckons, Homura answers, walking faster towards her bed in order to lie down next to her. She's still in her black sweater and white skirt from earlier, because she hasn't had a chance to change yet, but she's never going to turn down a chance to cuddle with Madoka.

    Her arms wrap around Madoka and hold her tightly, squishing the shark plushie between them. Homura closes her eyes tightly to savor the feeling of Madoka in her arms, and for a time she doesn't say anything at all. She just holds onto her beloved soulmate, clinging to her as if she were the most important thing in the world, because she is.

    "I love you so much," says Homura, her voice almost a whine.

    After a moment, her embrace loosens, but doesn't release. Her eyes open and look into Madoka's, and with a grim resigned smirk she states, "We have a lot of catching up to do. With the rest of the world, I mean."
Madoka Kaname 2018-04-28 06:53:52 90879
    Homura smiling at her when she walks in puts a faint blush on Madoka's cheeks, and she giggles softly when she sees Homura's smile widen. She's always liked Matilda a lot, a wonderful Christmas present given to her on a bittersweet occasion not unlike this one. "I'm going to have to spend some more nights here than I've gotten used to. All my plushies are going to need time with me," she replies to the idea of having to spend so much time without her.

    When Homura lays down next to her and holds onto her Madoka sighs happily, shifting around and turning Matilda a bit so she can hold onto Homura as well. For the moment she doesn't mind the big stuffed shark between them either. She's also happy to relax together in a comfortable moment, some of the tension that had built up in her melting away now that she's in the arms of her beloved.

    "I love you too, Homura-chan." Madoka can't imagine loving or needing anyone more, even having friends and family she cares so deeply about.

    When Homura relaxes Madoka looks into her eyes, looking a little embarrassed, "Eheheh, we really do. I'm not even sure how to go about it yet, except that I need to spend a lot of time here at home. Mama and Papa didn't actually think I was dead, they just... didn't know anything at all."

    She shifts around for a moment, loosening up and then actually setting Matilda aside, back behind her. Resting against her really, but no longer creating a gap between Homura and herself. She pulls Homura closer and clings tightly to her, burying her face against Homura's shoulders, a high pitched wine muffled by Homura's sweater and shoulder.

    Homura can feel her body shake slightly as she cries, squeezing and clinging to Homura as if her life depended on it. For as strong as she has it within her to be, in this moment she feels very weak. She feels weaker than any time she ever has since she made her contract with Kyubey and became a Magical Girl.

    It doesn't last an especially long time, however, and she hugs Homura tight while relaxing again, sniffling softly and then finally explaining. "It's just like you always tried to warn me about, and I never listened. Not really. About how much people would miss me if I was gone... I eventually knew how you'd feel about me because I felt the same way about you. But seeing my friends and my family all hurting and crying because they thought they might have lost me forever."

    Madoka shakes her head a little from side to side, "And the only reason they didn't is because you've been there to save me, all this time. I've told you how much I love you and how happy I am to be with you, and have you as my very best friend. But I don't think I can ever repay you for everything you've done to protect the feelings of my friends and family, too."
Homura Akemi 2018-04-28 07:15:33 90880
    'All of my plushies are going to have to spend time with me.'

    Homura chuckles. It's not a giggly laugh like she usually makes, but a little shorter and bittersweet while still communicating a moment of humor. "... and what of the plushies you left at my place? Should I bring some of them here for you?" She means it mostly as a joke, but she will full stop, one hundred percent go fetch plushies for Madoka if she so much as hints that she might want them. Maybe not right now but eventually.

    The statement of Madoka's returned love always feels nice to hear. Homura would be lying if she said she didn't get a small thrill from having such a cute and wonderful person say such things to her. To be here, at relative peace with the one she loves, is exactly what she needs right now.

    Though things aren't entirely peaceful right now, are they?

    "I can't blame your family for wanting you to stay here. It's fine if I have to come over in order to spend time with you. Heck, it's not like I can complain about Tomohisa's cooking."

    Once the shark is removed, Homura's access to Madoka's cuddly warmth is unimpeded, and she draws nearer to the one she loves just as her beloved pulls her closer. When she hears her soulmate's whine, Homura holds her tightly, kissing the top of her fluffy hair and letting her take the comfort she seeks. When she feels Madoka shake, she starts to gently rub her back up and down with wide, slow strokes. Homura is here for you, Madoka-chan. It's okay.

    'It's just like you always tried to warn me about, and I never listened. Not really.'

    Homura doesn't respond to that right away, but she does glance off to the side. A part of her thinks, 'So you finally get it,' but she isn't going to say something like that out loud in a moment like this. None of what Madoka says about her family missing her is new. They love her, just as Homura loves her, so it's no surprise at all.

    Perhaps her own pain is why she felt so strongly about apologizing.

    "Madoka-chan, you don't have to repay me. You've already given me far more than I deserve, and I can't tell you how happy it makes me to be the one you love. Just seeing you alive and healthy is enough for me, and even if things aren't happy right now, they will be again, and even with problems like this you've given me the happiest time of my life."

    Whatever Homura was thinking about before is lost to her now. Now Madoka is crying and needs her support, and that's all that matters to her.
Madoka Kaname 2018-04-28 07:31:44 90881
    Madoka smiles to Homura, "They saw me last so they'll have to wait a few more days. But when I spend time a night at your house next I'll definitely have to include them." The plushie rotation is going to take time anyway, Madoka figures, so the ones at Homura's house will get their turns in due time. The ones over here at her house were definitely starting to get a bit neglected compared to the ones at the Homu House.

    The mention of her fathers cooking gets a giggle out of Madoka, "Even if it's only been a week to me, it feels like a year since I got to eat Papa's cooking. I'm getting better, but I have a long way to go if I want to get as good as him." She really does too, because she eventually wants to be able to cook for her family as well as her father has for hers, even if that family is only Homura and herself.

    Homura being here for her is exactly what Madoka needs right now, holding onto her guardian angel and protector and soaking up her warmth and comfort. It really is a comfort, too, knowing that Homura is here for her whenever she needs her, whether it's to physically protect her or soothe her emotions when she's upset.

    It also isn't as if she's never understood. She has understood somewhat when Homura told her outright why she protected her the way she does, and then their minds and souls came together she understood with perfect clarity. But it's one thing to understand, even to understand emotionally, than it is to have the full force of those repercussions thrown right in her face.

    It isn't as if she'd even feel upset if she gave her life for a worthy cause- that just isn't who she is. But the life of a Puella Magi is exceedingly dangerous, and even with Homura protecting her what were the chances that she'd lose her life frivolously, for nothing at all? To cause so much pain to her family and all her friends over nothing? That's what's fresh and new, and sending hot, salty tears down her cheeks.

    "I know I don't, but I just want you to know how thankful I am you've been here for me. I love you so much and I always want to make you happy, but you didn't even need any of that when you were protecting me. That just makes me love you and want to give you everything I can even more, because I know what a wonderful person you are." The waterworks seem to be over for now, save for a sniffle or two, and she rubs at her face with the back of her wrist to dry it off, pressing her cheek to Homura's and nuzzling against it gently, taking in a deep breath and letting it out as a sigh.

    "You're even here for me right now," she adds, in a calmer, soft tone.
Homura Akemi 2018-04-28 07:56:47 90882
    Homura chuckles again. Well, that logic is fair enough. Though Homura suspects that all of Madoka's plushies might one day end up at Homura's house anyways, and that that point it might be more proper to call it the Homudoka house.

    Homura smiles as Madoka giggles, because her giggle is such a sweet, pretty sound. What she says after makes Homura a little bit thoughtful, though she doesn't voice her thoughts right away. She lights up at the idea of Madoka cooking, saying, "Ah~... well I that ice cream you made for me was wonderful, so I think you're off to a good start." Homura was learning to cook a bit herself, but cooking is an important life skill, and Madoka's father is probably one of the best teachers she could ask for.

    "It's funny... on some level it feels like it's been a long time to me, too. Maybe it's just because of how much time has passed for everyone else. Seeing the texts and mails that people have sent me, reading their worried words. I don't know, even if I didn't miss them before, maybe I feel their longing because of empathy."

    Homura frowns slightly, looking over Madoka's head. "Not that I doubt we're back home, but it really does feel like a different world. Not in any literal sense, but... everything is just so different."

    The pain and terror of being a Puella Magi is real, and now the two of them are experiencing a bit of it. Homura would love to protect Madoka from anything, to hold her and keep her safe, but this is the life that Madoka has chosen, the life she would always choose, and so Homura has learned that this reality isn't something she can save her beloved from. Not entirely.

    What Madoka says has her smiling, even if it's a bittersweet smile, because being loved and appreciated by the one you love and appreciate most is the best thing. Maybe right now it's just salve on a wound, but it's salve that Homura needs.

    "Of course I'm here for you. My heart is yours, all yours, and it always has been. You can hold me, you can cuddle me, you can kiss me all you like and I'll love every minute of it, because you're my everything. I don't mind if I had to suffer a bit to make you happy. It's a small price to pay in order to have the peace of mind in knowing that you'll be fine. I want to give you everything, too."

    Homura holds Madoka a little tighter to emphasize the point, pressing her cheek against her darling's soft fluffy hair and holding her so cuddly tight.

    "I wouldn't even be here if not for you. I may have saved you, but you saved me first. You're the reason I'm still alive."
Madoka Kaname 2018-04-28 08:20:07 90883
    They probably will unless Junko or Tomohisa decides to ask to keep one around for remembrance sake. Or perhaps Madoka will give one to Tatsuya. ...probably one of the more resilient ones, if she does.

    She smiles when Homura mentions the ice cream she made, "I should make some more for you this summer, once watermelons are in season again. Though I could make some sooner, it just wouldn't be quite as fresh and tasty." Of course she had help from her father with that too-- but it'd almost be neglectful not to take such expert advice if available when making a personal gift for a friend.

    "I know. It's incredible how much can change in a year and a half. I missed Tatsuya's entire first year of school..." She'd always tried to be such a good sister to him too. Missing such an important milestone seems crazy, but it'd come and gone without her. "I feel like I've let a lot of people down. The Contractors, and the company. Everyone I've gotten back to is just happy we're okay, but I can't help but feel they were relying on me."

    Madoka's voice had gotten a little low and quiet again, but she perks up a bit after a moment. "Still, I think we did a lot of good when it was needed the most. If it wasn't for Salamander I don't think Mitakihara and Tokyo would have recovered near as fast as they did, and I know a few of the Contractors sent me messages saying they were linking up with Virtue."

    She nods then in agreement, still holding very close to Homura, starting to rub her back while cuddling with her. "We're home. I don't have any doubt that that's the case. I don't think it was actually time we went through either, not if that Mamoru-kun didn't recognize us." Not that she has any real explanation for why so much time had passed when they returned home, though Mamoru seemed to have some clue. Time dilation, or something like that?

    'Of course I'm here for you. My heart is yours, all yours, and it always has been. You can hold me, you can cuddle me, you can kiss me all you like and I'll love every minute of it, because you're my everything.'

    "Can I?" Madoka asks with a little bit of playfulness in her voice. After nuzzling Homura's cheek she pulls back and looks into her eyes, a smile on her lips and a loving gaze mixed with mild mischief sparkling in her eyes. She then shifts forward and presses her lips to Homura's, soft and gentle, letting them squish lightly into her sweethearts. She holds the kiss for a short moment, only to let out a long sigh through her nose, relaxing and melting against Homura, pressing up against her all cozy close and kissing her a bit more firmly, holding her, cuddling her and kissing her all at once.

    It's yet another reminder that it really doesn't matter how bad things might get, as long as she's together with Homura she can withstand anything. For all the pain and empathy and worry, everything just melts away when she focuses on Homura-chan and how very much she loves her.
Homura Akemi 2018-04-28 08:45:09 90885
    Homura giggles, and it's a real giggle this time, as Madoka mentions making more ice cream with her. "Ahh... back then I was desperate for even a bit of your attention. I'd be the worst liar in the world if I said that wasn't important to me. Sharing that ice cream with you was wonderful." She frowns, but it's not a sad frown. More of a thoughtful one. "I wonder if they ever rebuilt my old apartment."

    Homura considers the people who relied upon them, and the people they let down. Well, Homura can't deny it. Her dreams of making a heroic alternative to Eclipse have been shattered, but... maybe that's okay. Maybe it wasn't meant to be. "They sent me similar texts. It seems like everyone found somewhere else to be. I'm sure the money just ran out without us around to funnel it. It's too bad."

    Her smile becomes a bit wry, and her eyes are less 'sad yet happy' and more 'oh brother'. "Dad took over Salamander in my absence. I mean I was always technically a trustee, but... after all this time I wonder if my employees even remember my face. I wonder if I'd recognize any of theirs. I wonder if any of the old crew even still work there." On a slightly more positive note, she adds, "At least Eclipse hasn't bought it out. That's one point in favor of Dad, even if it's accidental."

    Homura shrugs, and Madoka can probably feel Homura's arms rise and fall. "We did do a lot of good, and if the Contractors weren't meant to be then that's just that."

    "Time travel looks very different," says Homura, though Madoka might remember this from Homura's memories. "I've seen it enough to know. I thought it was some kind of future setting, not our future but a future of another world, based on Mamoru's age and him not knowing me... but all things considered he only looked as old there as he does here. Maybe we were out of sync already."

    'Can I?'

    Homura smiles playfully and knowingly at Madoka, thinking something along the lines of, 'Well, obviously...' Yet even as much as they've cuddled, Homura can't help but blush a little as Madoka looks at her so mischievously. Anticipation builds, awaiting her sweetie's affections. Lips meet, and this moment is wonderful. Homura's lips press back against Madoka's, wanting nothing more to be close to her as much as possible. Presses back against Madoka-chan, enjoying being held, cuddled and kissed. Homura hopes that her beloved is just as happy as she, because nothing makes Homura feel more on top of the world than Madoka, even in times like this.

    Truly, what Homura needs most in life is right here in her arms. Only Madoka can give Homura the love she deeply desires.
Madoka Kaname 2018-04-28 09:00:06 90887
    The giggles are contagious and Madoka giggles more herself when Homura says how much she wanted her attention, "Then I'm extra glad I gave it to you. It's really been amazing getting to know you better and becoming your friend." That friendship turning into romance has been just as wonderful as well, and Madoka smiles while squeezing Homura close. The old apartment? "I wonder. If they did it should have been completed by now. We could go look sometime, if you want."

    She hadn't yet gotten the full information on what happened with Salamander, so she listens a bit more intently as Homura goes over it. "Well I'm glad they didn't get a hold of it. I'm not sure I could just sit by if something we built together ended up working for evil."

    She nods a little as Homura explains the differences between her usual time travel and the world they saw. She certainly has many of Homura's memories, but those are mostly focused on herself and their relationship over so many timelines rather than the intricacies of time travel itself, just as Madoka didn't spontaneously learn how to do high level math or build pipe bombs.

    And then it's time to cuddle cuddle kiss kiss, and Madoka thinks she's spent enough time feeling sad and worrying for one night. She holds Homura close even as she's held herself, breaking the lingering kiss only to press another one to her beloved's lips, squirming slowly against her while they cuddle and stretching her legs out before entwining them with Homura's.

    She's most certainly very happy, soaking up Homura's love and affection while giving so much of her own, wonderful happy feelings putting a smile on her lips even while they kiss. Right now absolutely everything is perfect, and she couldn't be happier.

    So much has changed, but so little has changed. A wise person once said that the more things change the more they stay the same and for Madoka that's certainly true, because as different as the world around them is she's still totally and deeply in love with Homura Akemi.