It wasn't long before I found her. A simple searching
spell isn't hard to perform, at least not when you've
lived in the strange, ancient ages I have. But even
that wasn't quick enough. The days it took to get to
her-even if they had somehow been reduced to
seconds-still would be enough time to fill me with
anxiousness. It was a strange, almost forgotten
feeling. She has a habit of making me remember things
I was happy when I finally saw her, but that quickly
changed to guilt once I saw the criss-crossing scars.
Ah, finally a sensation I'm familiar with. She knew
what I was thinking. She smiled and told me not to
worry, not to feel bad. That this was a small price to
pay. I didn't know if I should believe her or not.
Once she was released from the hospital, we lived
together in a small apartment in Houou. Utena tried to
finish the rest of high school in a small public
school while I worked as a gardener. She would have
objected to me creating my own money. Her Aunt Yurika
was against the arrangement at first, not to mention
angry that Utena was expelled from Ohtori. But it
wasn't hard for me to convince her to let her niece
live with someone she didn't know, far away. I am my
brother's sister, after all.
Utena was always thankful that I found her. She said
that I had saved her this time, both from her own
sense of failure and from the wrath of Aunt Yurika,
and that I had a touch of prince beneath layers of
princess. I hadn't really changed. It was a princess
searching for her prince, as Psyche searched for Eros.
Meanwhile, Utena began volunteering in a soup kitchen
and helped out her classmates whenever she could. She
was still the same, of course. That's the lesson I've
learned in my eons of life. Things don't really
change, not really.
At first I simply thought she was aging well. But when
her Aunt Yurika died, and then Touga, then Juri, then
Saionji, then Kozue, then Wakaba, then Miki and
Nanami, then an aged Tsuwabuki...then we were forced
to realize what she had become. She had smiled and
said, "This means I'll be with you forever, protecting
you." That night, when I was sure she was asleep, I
crouched down to the tiled floor of the kitchen and
As I said, it started out small. She volunteered at
the soup kitchen, helped out her classmates.
Eventually, she became the crutch of the school's
downtrodden. She would come home and proudly tell me
of her deeds while I blankly served her a cup of tea.
A girl in Home Economics made her a white prince's
uniform, half out of thankfulness, half as a
good-natured joke. One day during swimming class, she
pulled a drowning girl from the pool and resuscitated
her. Utena was featured in the newspaper for saving a
girl from a burning building. The embers never even
touched her white uniform.
Eventually people began calling the apartment, begging
for help. They learned that her work was more
efficient, more assured of success than the
authorities'. A firefighter, a policeman, a soldier
can die. Utena cannot.
That was a hundred years ago. Now she lies on our
pink-sheeted bed, covered in sweat, her heart pumping
hard against her white uniform. I had to disconnect
the phone; the constant ringing disturbed her, made
her anxious. But now the doorbell takes its place,
accompanied by a cacophony of muffled screams outside
the apartment. She groans as she strains to get up. I
push her back down. "You'll tear the stitches if you
go," I say, "And who knows what will happen if they
tear and I'm not there to put them back in?"
"Then what should I do?" she asks, panting. She covers
her pale face with her hands. "What should I do, what
should I do?!"
Though I know she's immortal, I momentarily
contemplate taking a palette knife and ending her
misery, ending this cycle. Who could kill the innocent
of the innocent, the savior of the world? Not even a
witch. What cruel design allows an immortal to tire,
but never die?
"Don't worry, my prince," I say, kissing her brow.
"Don't worry. You don't have to do this anymore.
You'll never have to do this ever again." I then raise
myself up and began to walk to the door. She faced the
swords for me once upon a time.
Utena's eyes widen. "Anthy?! Anthy! No! ANTHY!"
I open the door to face the mob. Things don't really
change, not really.