Utena Muyo! or No need for Utena! Part Five
The stage was dark, lit with an eerie green glow. Utena ventured forward cautiously, holding the sword's hilt in her hand as she aproached the depression in front of her. Her eyes widened, "Grandpa's story, could it be true?"
Utena's hand loosened it's grip on the sword, and it clattered to the stage. "Agh!" she exclained, cluching at her chest, "that was scary!"
Utena bent down to grasp the hilt, a hand suddenly comes out of the depression, grasping Utena's wrist firmly, and she gasps in surprise. Using that grip Juri slowly pulls herself up to a sitting position, the demon mask hiding her entire face. She reached out with one hand, gently stroking along Utena's cheek. She draws her closer, almost into a kiss...
Utena pulls free, turns, and runs. She scrambled desperately at the angled ramp, sliding back down before pulling herself up and away.
"Cut!" Wakaba cried out, "Good work, everybody."
"I'm not sure if you say that in theaters," Keiko pointed out. She was here to help organize this first real rehersal, as well as practicing for her Sasami bits.
"Whatever," Nanami shrugged. She looked over at Miki, "Nice job on the sets."
Miki didn't answer her. Shortly after he had been thanked sweetly by Anthy the young man had collapsed into a nearby chair,. Right now he was snoring softly in his sleep, draped over the chair in a boneless heap.
"At least his eyes aren't glowing red anymore," Keiko cheerfully pointed out how Miki had looked when they ran into him last night.
"That was freaky," Nanami agreed.
"Nicely done, Utena," Anthy clapped her hands happily.
Juri carefully pulled the demon mask off, running her hand through her hair to try to tidy her mane of orange-gold. "You actually looked frightened, poor girl," Juri smiled as she reached up a hand to stroke Utena's face like she had on the stage.
Utena blushed brightly, looking down. "You were pretty scary," Utena confessed, "with those little lights someone put in the eye holes of the mask."
"That was a nice touch, wasn't it," Juri grinned.
"You might help us out," the black clad Touga puffed tiredly, helping roll the pieces of the first set off the stage. All the stagehands were wearing black clothes, to keep them from being noticed by amyone in the audience.
"But I might mess up my costume," Juri smirked.
Touga swore under his breath and kept pushing.
"The rooftop battle scene is next," Wakaba yelled.
"Right," Saionji called out his answer, sorting through the set pieces until he found the right ones. He, Touga, Akio and a few of the girl groupies rolled out various segments, creating a mock-up of a school's rooftop.
Utena walked out in her school boy's uniform, carefully laying down on the roof on her side. She pretended to wake up, sitting up and stretching. She looked around her, "Oh great, I fell asleep." Chu-chu ventured out of the shadows in his cat costume, a little bell ringing on his collar. "Kitty, how did you get up here?" Utena asked.
Utena knelt down, Chu-chu ran at her, and then leapt only to seemingly disappear, dropping behind a back cloth set up beside her. She jerked in surprise, looking around wildly. The bell rang behind her this time, and she turned to see Juri perched up on a crate, looking down at her as she casually toyed with the cat's bell.
"Ryoko," Juri said simply.
"Huh?" Utena gaped at her in surprise.
Juri gave her a dangerous little smile, "That's my name." Her eyes suddenly began to glow softly in the darkness.
"Oh, no," Utena said weakly, "you can't be that... freeze dried demon!"
"It was dark and cold in there," Juri said to her softly, "over seven hundred years have passed since I was trapped in that cave." She began to look visibly angry as she continued, "You'll never know how much pain I had to suffer."
Utena looked up at her wide-eyed, "So you're here for revenge!"
"Right," Juri gave her an unrepentant bad girl grin.
"But it's not my fault," Utena protested, knowing that it wasn't gioing to work but having to try anyway. "It was my ancestor, some guy named Yosho," she pleaded with her.
"I don't care," Juri snapped back. She raised her open hand above her head, and right on cue the softly glowing sword dropped into her hand. She closed her fingers on it as she grinned ferally, "I just need to let my anger out now!"
Utena barely dodged the first attack as Juri leapt at her, then the tall duelist proceeded to chase her all over the darkened stage.
"Cut," Nanami jumped to her feet, "that was great!"
"Did I get the timing right?" Akio asked, sticking his head up over the back wall. It had been his job to toss the sword over to Juri at just the right time.
Keiko gave him a thumbs up, "Good one."
"I wouldn't mind some kind of visual effect when the sword appears," Juri suggested to Nanami. "It doesn't look terribly supernatural the way it is now," she sighed.
"Miki-kun," Nanami called out in a singsong voice.
"Yes?" Miki didn't stir from his seat.
"Do you think you could come up with something?" Nanami asked. She smiled, "I'm sure Anthy would really appreciate it."
With a soft moan Miki pulled himself to his feet. "I'll see what I can do," he sighed.
Anthy beamed at Juri and Utena, "That was so thrilling." She gaze Juri a thoughtful glance, "Would you like to have dinner with us at the dorm? We could practice our lines together."
"That would be a great idea," Juri grinned back at her, giving Utena a sidelong glance.
Utena suddenly began to think that something was going on...
Author's notes: The Tenchi Bits are from the Tenchi Muyo OVA #1.