Status: I have no idea when this will be resumed...

Marchen Wonderland

Everyone here is... Mad?!

At that moment, Liza and Takeru were trying to make sense of the Cheshaa's words.

"Hell if I know where we are... Everyone here is crazy..." Liza whispered to the blonde male. 'It's like it.. really is Wonderland...' she thought to herself.

"Nyaa, you'd be surprised what this place is called.. It has many names~" Cheshaa purred. Takeru and Liza looked at each other blankly, then turned to the green kigurumi-wearing figure.

"Like what??" the two blondes asked all at once.

"Well, like Eden, Utopia, Paradise, Heaven... you know, things like that." he replied, still slurping his yakisoba noodles. Takeru and Liza looked at each other.

"U...topia...? Paradise...? .. .. ........ HEAVEN?! Are we dead??" the tall female asked with a frightened look about her eyes. Takeru had a matching look about his own face.

"Of course you're not dead, nyaa.... If you were dead, we definitely wouldn't be talking right now~" the Cheshaa spoke well for having a mouthful of yakisoba. "You should ask someone else more about it, I only know so much, and I definitely have never seen you two around these parts, therefore... I don't know why you ask me of all Meruhen where you are."

"This is confusing..." Takeru stated, scratching his head. "So... why won't you tell us where we are??"

"As I said, nyaa..." the green kigurumi-wearing person sounded slightly annoyed. "It has many names. What you call it is your business." he purred, then slowly disappeared from sight in front of their very eyes.

"At the moment, I'll be going with 'Hell'." Liza muttered, looking out at the hill; The same figure was still there. She squinted slightly, to make out some kind- any kind- of detail about the person. It looked like they were holding up a map. Perhaps they were lost as well?

"Excuse me!!!" Liza shouted. "Do you know where we are??" She took off running toward the tallish figure. "WAIT FOR MEEEE!!!" Takeru called out, trying to keep up with the tall blond's stride. Suddenly she stopped running, and the dirty-blond male tried his best to avoid running into her as he also skidded to a stop. "What's wrong??" he asked. She only stood there with an astonished look on her face. Her mouth finally opened and a whisper escaped from her lips.



"Really? Everything is ready..? What about the cake?" another female voice rang out in the Tea Garden. A very male voice followed suit. "Really, it can't be a true Mu-tanjoubi celebration without the nineteen-layer-purple-velvet-ribbon cake."

'Two more familiar voices..?' Yura thought to himself. He thought on the voices for what seemed like an eternity. The feminine voice sounded just like Leeann's... A friend of Karen's and Liza's. The male voice resembled Masato from the band SuG, an aquaintance of his own. "Masato! Is that you??"

"Of course it is!" the man replied, finally coming into sight. He was carrying a tower of a cake, and someone had to be helping him. "Leeann..? Is that you...?" He queried.

"Who's Leeann? I'm Naneleé." The voice stated matter-of-factly, finally coming into view. She looked just like Leeann! From her very dark eyes, to her.. Were those Doc Martens on her feet..?

"So who's going to light the candles?" Keisagi spoke, cutting through the man with a top hat's thoughts. "What for..?" Yura asked audibly, but was overlooked.

"I'll do it!!" Renka cried out. No one's eyes could be wider than Mai-Mai and Keisagi's. "AH- I don't think that's a good idea, Kitten..." the rabbit-eared version of Keiyuu spoke calmly. "Why don't you go inside and.. play with some yarn..? You'll just get in the way out here.." he continued, giving an apologetic smile.

"Oh.. yeah, that's fine with me..." she finally muttered as her ears wilted, and she turned around to go back into the house. "Renka-chan..?"

She turned around quickly, her eyes lit up. "Yes, Keisagi??"

"I'll be back in there in a minute... Can't have you getting too tangled up like last time..." he said, chuckling.

"Oh.. I guess not..." The cat-eared girl looked down at the ground in embarassment and sulked into the house.

'I hope he's kidding about that...' Yura muttered.

"Kidding about what?" asked Mai-Mai. "She almost always gets tangled..."

"Yep, last time I had to cut her out of the mess of yarn..." Keisagi stated, shaking his head.

"... Then it would stand to reason that she shouldn't play with ...yarn, right..?"

The two with animal ears looked at each other and ran into the house after the girl.



"What time is it...?" muttered Karen, from under her comforter. She didn't really recall how she got back to her own room; That was a complete mystery to her at the moment.

"At least I feel slightly better now..." she resolved, slowly getting up from her twin-size matress. Looking all about the room, she finally noticed the alarm clock on the deep window sill. "A quarter after midnight..? I must have been really tired..." she thought out loud, trying her best to walk over to the computer chair; Her foot had fallen asleep from the way she was laying, and the pins-and-needles sensation was just kicking in.

"Geez..." she winced as she finally sat down, trying not to move even another millimeter. Karen booted up the computer, and at the start-up, she noticed the date.

"I should call Layla... After all, it's technically the day we're supposed to get in touch..." she contemplated, looking over at her cell phone at the adjoining desk. What time would it be in London... around four in the afternoon, probably..? She'd find out soon.


"So how do you think we should start our study plan then?" asked one of the worried looking students at the table. His eyes were wide, there was an important exam coming up; One that would change their lives, it seemed.

"Yeah... that'd be great...", said Layla, lost in deep thought.

"Layla!!! What's wrong with you?!" exclaimed a spectacled girl sitting across from her. "We only have a month before our next test! You're normally the one taking charge of our study group. Are you sure you're all right? You don't seem with it today at all..."

"I'm sorry, I just have a lot on my mi-" Layla was suddenly interrupted by a disturbing laugh... that seemed to be originating from her backpack...?

"Oh sorry guys! Just give me a moment" explained Layla as she scurried to retrieve her phone which was now playing the guitar riff from the GazettE song '13 Stairs[-]1'.

She grabbed for her phone and placed it to her ear, expecting either "Layla" or "Hello" or something else along those lines. Instead she heard familiar code words...

"Psychedelic Violence..." a rather squeaky female voice began. Layla's eyes sparked.

"Crime of Visual Shock!! Karen, you called early!!" she spoke loudly. Everyone turned to look at her strange use of wording, but Layla just continued talking.

"I was looking forward to our phonecall tomorrow! How have you been?" she spoke excitedly into the reciever. The voice on the other end spoke slowly.

"A little under the weather as of late.. It's been busy in the studio though.." Karen added, thoughtfully.

"Ohhh, how has work been? I bet lots of exciting things are on right now!" Layla gushed. She had met Karen while on a school trip in France, where the other girl had spent most of her life. It was Karen that had introduced her to X-Japan, making their codephrase so unique in origin. They kept touch over the years through a phone call expected on the 15th of every month.

"It's been so-so.. a lot of promotional things going on this month, so I thought I'd take the opportunity to call early instead.." she cut her words off suddenly. "You're where you can talk, aren't you...?"

"Ummm...." she trailed off, noticing the stares from her peers. "Not exactly, I just realised I'm being stared at by everyone.... Gimme two secs, I'm still on the line." she spoke quietly. "Um.... Sorry guys i need to take this call." Layla spoke with her hand over the reciever, got up from her seat and walked off into a nearby empty class room.

"Karen, are you still there?" she finally asked, closing the door behind herself.

"Yes, I'm here.. You were having a study group??"

"Not exactly, well sort of but we were having lunch at the same time.." Layla spoke, looking out the small window of the class room door. "My next assessment isn't for another month, so it's no big deal."

"Ah, but be careful with putting those off..." the feminine voice warned. "So~ what's been going on lately? OTHER than school, hmmm?" she purred. Layla stood there, hoping that Karen didn't mean what she thought. The voice on the other end sighed exasperatedly.

"Oh come on... You know exactly what I mean, Layla... Are you finally dating anyone!!" Layla winced at the words. She couldn't just say there was no one.. As she always said.

"OH, yeah totally!!" ...Liar. "There's this really cute guy I met at University!!" she finished sarcastically. Karen didn't get the hint.

"Really?? That's great news!" the other girl spoke like she was smiling, and Layla couldn't take the pressure.

"Not really..." she spoke slowly, drawing out the words as an apology. On the other end of the line was a deafening silence.

"Gah, I don't know how many times you have to ask me that!" Layla finally spoke once again. "My life just remains the same dull story as usual..." she started to ramble. "Its just University, work, and doing what I have to do. Don't get me wrong, I love my courses, and working at the museum is great! But.." she finally paused to take a breath.

"Sometimes I just wish... I were somewhere else... You know? Honestly Karen... I do sometimes wish I had more of an exciting lifestyle like yours."

Laughter erupted from Karen's side. "It's not that exciting!" she began, "I just take pictures of guys that are prettier than me most of the time!" she added. "It's not that great for your self-confidence, I'll tell you that much..." Layla smiled. "I think I can see where you're coming from... but at least you get to spend time with them!" she gushed. "You can't deny that's not exciting at all!"

"... Okay, maybe it's a little exciting.." the voice admitted. "You should come and visit soon, though! Honestly, you really need a vacation from what it sounds like..." she spoke in a maternal tone.

"My gosh! You know I'd LOVE! To!" Layla gushed once again. "I need to wait until my finals are over though. This summer we must make plans!" she added, giddily. "I'll do some overtime during my other holidays to save up for the trip!"

"Sounds good to me..." Karen spoke softly, her voice slightly changing to that of a paternal role. Maybe I can introduce you to a fine young man while you're here..." she added with a grin.

"You know they'd have to have my family's approval." Layla giggled, "Do you think you can find someone?"

"Maybe one or two guys come to mind, but it'll be a surprise until you get your ass here!" the other girl threatened.

"Well, now I definitely have something to look forward to this summer!" she spoke quickly. "Many, many things!"

"Ah, well hold that thought while I go through my address book..." Karen sounded like she was smirking, and there was a rustling of paper on her end. "Kamijo, Asagi, Uruha, Nao... ...Hear anything you like..?"

"You're hilarious Karen~" Layla giggled. Karen had a deadpan sense of humor that was unmistakeable to the University student.

".... Well I could see if one of my neighbors knows someone~" Karen sang out teasingly.

"Well I guess it'd be nice if you do introduce me to someone...I don't know if any of your friends would be interested in someoene as dull as me though." Layla resolved, running her free hand through her hair. "But to be honest i'm more excited in truth just to see you again after all these years! And to get a private tour!!"

"That's what you think!" Karen retorted with a small laugh. "If they find me interesting, they'll definitely find you amazing."

"Really?" Layla giggled again, "Hmm... Well I guess we'll have to see about that." she added. "I guess anything could happen."

"You'd be surprised. I'll call you unexpectedly with the details next time, since you were so happy to get a spur-of-the-moment call from me.", the other voice laughed.

"Whaaat? And then what... I call him?" Layla asked. "Wait ..Unexpected call..."

"Live a little, Layla~" the voice sang out, laughing slightly once again.

"No... I just realised ....Everyone at the ..." she traild off, "They're probably thinking what on earth is up with me.."

"Oh... you mean 'Crime of Visual Shock'..? Ah, and you yelled it pretty loud too, didn't you?" Karen questioned.

"Yeah, and I sort of left them hanging during our little lunchtime meeting. Oh well, this'll be interesting at least."

"True, very true~ can't say much about my dating life... Nonexistent as of late..."

"Wait, but what about...?" Layla couldn't remember the guy's name that Karen gushed about from time to time.

"... About...?" she trailed off. "... Oh... Him... Well... It's not really a relationship."

"But you always seem really.."

".... I'm too busy for an actual boyfriend, so we just see each other every once in a while... it's nothing more than that..." the girl on the other line resolved.

"Are you sure?" Layla began to say. A silence plagued the other end of the conversation. "Sorry.. Now I'm just pushing it, aren't I..?" Layla spoke defeatedly. "But I can relate about the being busy part, though."

Karen didn't seem to hear those words. "Besides, I'd like for it to just stay... The way it is..." she sighed, "And he's always busy too so it's very understandable on both our parts... .. .. I'm rambling, aren't I...?"

"No, no!! PLEASE go on~" Layla giggled. "The two of you may have more in common than you think, you know~"

"Hm.... Maybe, but probably not..." Karen spoke lowly. "So you'll be free to visit during the summer, right?" she added, hopefully.

"Yeah! Pending that finals go well! And my parents have okayed the trip also!" the other girl spoke excitedly into the reciever. "And I know you'll kill me if finals don't go well, so I'll be working hard!" Another awkward pause, then Karen's voice broke the silence between the two.

"I won't kill you, but I will give you epic hell about it! do your best!" she laughed.

"Will do!!!!! I always do!! This summer will be pretty busy though, right? Loads of tours to take?"

"If you want. We don't have to go touring every day of it.." she had taken all those tours at least a dozen times; The prospect of seeing the same thing again and again just didn't sound good. "Maybe you could sit in on a few photoshoots as well? might meet someone special~"

"...Wait, are you serious this time?!" Layla felt a lump in her throat. "Would that be okay..?"

"My studio, I say what goes." the voice retorted. "It must be great to be the boss, Karen!"

"Sometimes~ Sometimes not so much... Would be nice to have some help during the summer..." she hinted. Layla's eyes lit up.

"I'd love to help you out!!!" she gushed. A once in a lifetime opportunity to work in a photography studio! She couldn't have dreamed of a better change of pace!

"Great! I'll call you when you least expect it~ Your Japanese isn't too bad, is it..?" the other voice questioned.

"Uhh... I can just about get by.." she said, embarrassedly.

"..... ... Just ... Work on that for now..."

"Wait, don't tell me you're going to get some guy to call me randomly one day?!"

"..... NAISHO~" Karen sounded like she was smirking, then the line went dead. Wait, "naisho".... wasn't that..? ... secrecy.. or.. a secret?!

"WHAAAAaaaaaaaAAAAAAAT?!" she yelled into the phone desperately as her classmates came into the room and looked at her as if she were a lunatic. Layla flipped her phone shut and hid it behind her back.

"Uhhh... So lets review that lecture, shall we...?"
♠ ♠ ♠
^^ 久しぶりでしねー笑 
I fell off of Mibba for a while, but should be back and updating every few days from now on.