Catching Up

Date: 2018-05-30
Pose Count: 12
Fate T. Waldia 2018-05-30 22:46:16 91722
    It's been plenty of time since the incident at the Garden of Time. Long enough for Fate Testarossa to acclimate to a life other than abuse and breaking herself for a woman that never loved her.
    Moving in with Nanoha and taking up a job at Midori-ya has helped re-socialize the young Mage, as well as actually enrolling in school. But hate has, by and large, mostly kept to herself after the incident.
    It is actually her day off from helping in the bakery, but that doesn't stop her from hanging out after classes and waiting for Nanoha to go on break; leaving Fate largely by herself in a quiet corner of the bakery, killing time working on her homework.
Rashmi Terios 2018-05-30 22:52:23 91723
It's been far too long since Rashmi was able to check up with the Takamachis. But homework, Debate Club, helping out with her own family's business, the mystery of Mamoru's missing powers, the robot that fell from orbit and needed to be at least given a quick primer on How To Earth People...

Suffice to say that Rashmi gets fewer opportunities to patronize the Bakery than she'd like.

But no longer! As she pushes open the door to the Midori-ya, the redhead is very much looking forward to talking with Nanoha and Fate, and perhaps a slice of strawberry cake, and maybe a couple donuts for Lacchan and another for Koko-chan...

Really Rashmi's head is so full of to-do lists it's a wonder she remembers how to speak, sometimes.

Spotting Fate in the corner, she beams at the younger girl, lifting up a hand in a cheerful greeting. "Hallo, Fate-chan! It's so good to see you, sorry I haven't been around lately!"
Fate T. Waldia 2018-05-30 23:04:42 91725
    Donuts are always good. Though Fate is off duty, so she's not minding the counter, nor the door when it opens, and scribbles away at one equation or another. Scarlet eyes do glance up, though, and Fate blinks almost owlishly at the wave before recognition quickly dawns. "Ah..."
    Well it's as good an excuse as any to take a break from her work, and Fate sets her pancil down, neatly shuffling her papers to one side before folding her hands on her lap. The transformation is pretty dramatic. Where there had once been a steel-eyed, ice cold, girl who was impossible to reach before, is now a girl who meekly struggles to make eye contact.
    Considering what she had put everyone through, before, it's no wonder she has problems looking Nanoha's friends in the eyes.
    "Hello. You're... Rashmi, yes?" This is the first time they've interacted that hasn't been at Device-point, isn't it?
Rashmi Terios 2018-05-30 23:12:23 91726
Rashmi bobs her head, still as warm and cheerful as she was the day Fate and Arf visited her family's restaurant. "That's right. ...Um. One sec." Stepping up to the counter, she places her order; one strawberry cake and tea for here, half a dozen assorted donuts to go.

After paying and collecting her purchases, she moves a bit closer to Fate's table, taking a seat at the next one over. "...D'you mind talking a bit? Only I don't want to interrupt your homework if you're busy."

There's a kind sincerity beneath her voice; if Fate really didn't want to deal with her, it's quite clear the younger girl could just say 'No' and Rashmi wouldn't hesitate to say her goodbyes without judgment.
Fate T. Waldia 2018-05-30 23:24:15 91727
    But back then, at the Korma Chameleon, Fate was on guard. As soon as she had seen Nanoha and learned that the others in the restaurant were mages, she had closed herself off. She can't exactly do that here now, and...
    She's kind of tired of it.
    Fate waits patiently as Rashmi goes to make her order, taken cheerily by one member of Nanoha's family or another, and returns.
    "I don't mind." She replies; having already set her work aside, she waits for Rashmi to join her, fidgeting slightly in her seat, but once Rashmi does join her, Fate opens up point blank:
    "I'm sorry."
Rashmi Terios 2018-05-30 23:27:03 91728
"Don't be," Rashmi says immediately after the apology is done. "You were doing what you felt was right, Fate-chan. It's not your fault you were mistaken." Her fork slices away a sliver of cake, And after the bite is done being savored, she tilts her head a bit, her smile sad as she looks at Fate.

"Honestly... I'm sorry, Fate. I just... feel like we should have tried harder, y'know? It almost seemed like it was working..."
Fate T. Waldia 2018-05-30 23:52:05 91729
    Lips purse briefly, and Fate's eyes trail down to the surface of the table in front of her. The blonde is silent for a long ebat before she slowly shakes her head.
    "What I had felt was right caused too many people to be hurt- you included. And even though I didn't like what I was doing, I still did it anyway."
    This is why Fate Testarossa bows her head. It's rather formal considering the moment.
    "It wouldn't be right if I didn't at least apologize- and I know that's the bare minimum of what I can do."
    Much can be said about Fate Testarossa. But one thing is for certain, the girl has her convictions. But Fate goes silent at Rashmi's apology in return. Again she shakes her head.
    "You all did what you could... And for that I'm thankful."
Rashmi Terios 2018-05-30 23:56:41 91730
"I understand," Rashmi says gently. "And I accept your apology. Just... Well... I forgave you the moment it happened. Nano-chan cares about you very much, Fate-chan, and she's a pretty good judge of people. So just... remember this; if it turns out we end up on opposite sides again? You still won't need to ask forgiveness. I'd still want to be your friend, y'know? Sides don't matter, as long as you're being true to who you are."
Fate T. Waldia 2018-05-31 00:12:23 91731
    Nanoha is a pretty good judge of character isn't she? Just mentioning the other girl by name brings a ghost of a smile upon Fate's face. "I don't think that will be necessary..." She does murmur, though.
    Tucking an errant lock of blonde hair behind an ear. "Now that I don't have to... I don't really want to fight anymore. I never enjoyed hurting people."
Rashmi Terios 2018-05-31 00:17:22 91732
"I don't either," Rashmi confides, her smile brightening at the change in Fate's demeanor. "I hate fighting, honestly... But sometimes people need to be protected. But that's my choice, not yours, Fate-chan. If you don't want to fight again, then I will definitely be happy you've found that kind of peace. A lot of people who end up becoming soldiers don't really get that... and you deserve it more than most."
Fate T. Waldia 2018-05-31 00:31:17 91733
    Peace. Yes. That's what Fate wants now, and the girl dips her head in a faint nod. "I always hated it. ... I still want to help Nanoha- and her other friends." She ventures hesitantly. "But for now I think I'd like a little peace."
Rashmi Terios 2018-05-31 00:37:22 91734
And here Rashmi reaches out, resting a careful hand on Fate's arm. "You've earned your rest, Fate-chan," she says quietly. "Take all the time you want. And come by the Korma sometime, okay? Curry tastes better when you're not stuffed full of bad feelings."

Finishing her cake and tea, she gets out of her chair, picking up the donut box. "I've got to get these to their homes, but I'm so glad to see you're doing better, Fate-chan. Call me or Nicomachea if you ever need help, all right?"

And with that, she walks out the door, perfectly happy to give Fate the peace she's been craving.