*	*	*	*	*

		Orange Marmalade - episode twelve
		"Casting Pebbles"


		Meiko's Diary

	The photography session seems to have been a success, although
Miki is reluctant to talk about it for some reason, and Yuu only
smiles when I ask about it.  Still, he seems happy.  I'm sure that one
of them will tell me about it before long.
	The rest of our trip has gone well.  The weather has been
beautiful all week, if a little warmer than I would like, and there's
reason to expect that it will continue to be beautiful for the two
days we have remaining here.  The water, of course, is lovely.  I
think An has spent more time in the ocean than she has on dry land
this week.
	The four of us went into town together the day after
Rumi-san's session.  An, as always, seems intent on sampling all of
the local specialties before we return home.  She seems to be making
good progress toward that goal, too.
	I thought Miki was a little bored by this small seaside town,
but she assures me that's not the case.  I suppose she has my brother
on her mind...
	I said I would try to help her, but I confess I'm not sure
where to begin...

		*	*	*	*	*

[Scene: Beach House, Girls' Bedroom]

[The camera pulls away, revealing Meiko sitting in front of the
mirror, trying to use the dresser as a writing-desk.  It's not
terribly well-suited to the task, but she has managed to prop the
diary up, supporting it with one hand.  Though she writes with
meticulous care, forming precise characters, she also writes at a good
pace -- until she hits that last sentence.  At that point, she purses
her lips in thought.  She stares at the page for a few moments before
closing the book with a resigned sigh.]

Meiko:  Not sure at all.

[Standing and stretching, she picks up the diary and crosses the room.
She kneels to place the book into one of her suitcases.  As she
reaches to close the suitcase, her eyes pause on a glint of light.
She smiles softly and picks up the item -- her Toryo medallion -- for
a moment before replacing it and closing the suitcase.]

Meiko:  Two more days... and then vacation for another two and a half

[She stands and leaves the room, not looking back.  Camera lingers for
a moment on the closed suitcase and now-empty room before cutting


[Scene:  Tokyo.  The ABCB.]

[The kissaten is nearly empty; aside from one couple in a booth, only
Ginta and Arimi are here.  Ginta is perched on one of the stools, with
a half-empty cup of coffee in front of him.  He doesn't seem to be
drinking it any more.  Arimi, dressed in her ABCB uniform, is behind
the counter.  In theory, she is waitressing, but the lack of clientele
means that she is free to lean against the counter, chin cupped in her
hands, and smile dreamily.]

Arimi:  Two more days...

[Ginta looks up at this.]

Ginta:  Two days until what?

Arimi:  Until Yuu-sempai comes back.  Then we'll have almost three
        weeks together, with no school to worry about.

Ginta:  (uninterested) Oh.  (pause) It'll be nice to see Miki again.

[Arimi nods absently.]

Arimi:  Maybe the four of us should go somewhere to celebrate.

Ginta:  (blinks) Will Matsuura and Miki want to go on a trip, when
        they've just returned?

Arimi:  (flatly) I didn't mean a trip...  (thoughtfully) Miki-san
        likes to dance, though.  I wonder if Yuu-sempai dances...

Ginta:  She does?  I haven't seen her go dancing in-- (flushes bright
        red) Well, since that time.

Arimi:  (quickly) I'm sure she has, she just hasn't told you about it.

Ginta:  (doubtfully) I hope so...

[The door swings open.  Arimi swiftly straightens up and turns,
already beginning her greeting.]

Arimi:  Welcome to--

[Her voice catches for a moment as she sees who has walked in:
Tsuchiya Kei.  But she continues, and even manages a cheery smile.]

Arimi:  --the ABCB!

[Completely at ease, Kei crosses the room and sets himself onto a
stool.  Ginta, only two seats away, casts a long sidewise glance in
his direction, but Kei doesn't appear to notice.  He smiles faintly at

Kei:  Hello.  We've seen each other before, haven't we?

Arimi:  Ah... I was here the last time you came.  I mean, the time
        An-- a young girl walked into you by accident.

Kei:  (nods) Yes, now I remember.  You're looking well.

Arimi:  It's a good day.

[Kei turns his head to glance at the nearly-empty kissaten, and Arimi
hastily adds:]

Arimi:  Well, not for business, but everything else...

[Once more, Kei smiles faintly, and he nods.]

Kei:  I'd like an American. (1)

Arimi:  (shaking her head slightly) Just a moment...

[She turns away and grabs a glass to begin preparing the drink.  Ginta
shoots another sidelong glance at Kei, who again doesn't seem to
notice.  Then, he stands up.]

Ginta:  I'll be back later tonight, Arimi-chan.

[He turns to leave, but turns back a moment later.]

Ginta:  Uh... the dance might be, uh...  I'll think about it.

Arimi:  (over her shoulder) All right.  We can talk about it tonight,

[Ginta nods, and leaves.  Arimi serves Kei, who sips at the coffee.]

Kei:  Going dancing?

[He smiles slightly and motions with his head toward the door.]

Kei:  He doesn't seem the type.

Arimi:  (slightly surprised) Ginta?  (pause) I suppose not, but he's a
        good dancer.

Kei:  (noncommitally) Mmm.  You never can tell...

[He returns to drinking his coffee.  Arimi stands silently for a few
moments, waiting to see whether he will continue.  When it seems he
won't, she departs toward the couple in the booth.]

1 - An "American" coffee is somewhat weaker than the usual variety
served in Japan.  It's apparently a "trendy" drink.


[Scene:  Beach House, Outside]

[Meiko emerges onto the deck.  Leaning against the rail, she stares
out toward the sea, looking pensive.  Whatever answer she's looking
for, she's clearly not finding it.  Some time passes before she is
distracted by the sound of footsteps.  Anju walks up the stairs,
dressed in her bathing suit and carrying a towel.  She stops at the
top when she sees Meiko.]

Anju:  Are you all right, 'neechan?

Meiko:  (glancing at Anju) Hello, An.  You're back early for a change.

Anju:  I got hungry.

Meiko:  (smiling slightly) I should have guessed.

Anju:  You're trying to change the subject, 'neechan.  What's
       bothering you?

[An expression of indecision crosses Meiko's face, but she sighs in

Meiko:  It... It has to do with oniichan.  Don't you think he's been
        acting... strangely, this week?

Anju:  (blinking) Strangely, how?

Meiko:  (biting her lip) Well... he hasn't been so... distant, lately.
        He hasn't been sarcastic, or rude, or... anything.  At first I
        thought I was just imagining it, but Miki mentioned it too...

Anju:  You're worried because 'niichan is being nice?

Meiko:  Well...  (reluctantly) Yes.

Anju:  (cheerfully) Don't worry, then.  He's only doing that because I
       asked him to.

Meiko:  You... asked him to.

[Anju nods.]

Meiko:  And he listened?

Anju:  Well...

Meiko:  An... what did you do?

Anju:  Well, I... sort of...  (speaking very rapidly) hypnotized him
       and told him to be nice to people.

[Meiko gapes at Anju as this sinks in.]

Meiko:  You used the Power on him?!

[Anju frantically makes shushing motions, glancing around as she does
so.  Fortunately, nobody seems to be in sight.]

Anju:  (small voice) It was only a -little- bit...

Meiko:  (less noisily) That's not the point!

Anju:  But, but don't you think it was an improvement?

[Meiko buries her face in her hands.]

Meiko:  An...

Anju:  But he was being nice to people!  He even volunteered to help
       cook dinner all week.  -And- he helped Rumi-san.  How often
       does he do things like that?

Meiko:  An, that's not the point!  You -hypnotized- our brother!

Anju:  (pouting) Miki liked it...  didn't you, 'neechan?

[Meiko starts to retort, but Anju cuts her off.]

Anju:  She's happier... I'm happier... the rest of the family is
       happier... and 'niichan is happier, too.  So what's wrong with

Meiko:  What's wrong with it?  An, you -know- we aren't supposed to
        use the Power, especially not for things like that!  And how
        can you say he's happier?  Did he ask you to do this to him?

Anju:  Well, no...  (innocent tone) But don't you think he seems
       happier now?

Meiko:  Well, I... (shakes her head) That's not the point, either!
        It isn't right to play with people's minds like that!  What if
        something went wrong?

Anju:  (downcast) But I was just trying to help...

Meiko:  (sighing) It's not the right way.  Promise me you'll change
        him back as soon as you can do it without anybody noticing.

Anju:  (even more downcast) ...All right.  (pause) If it doesn't wear
       off before then.

Meiko:  "Wear off..."  When will it wear off?

[Anju considers the question for a moment.]

Anju:  It depends.  Usually about a week, unless it's broken before

Meiko:  (blinks) Broken?  Err... how would it be broken?

[Anju shrugs.]


[Scene:  A Street]

[At midday, the street is fairly crowded.  Among the people on the
street are Yuu and Miki, walking side by side.  Yuu is wearing a white
and blue T-shirt and shorts, and seems relaxed, as usual.  Miki is
wearing a pale green summer dress, and her hair is down; she doesn't
look entirely at ease.  She keeps stealing glances at Yuu when she
thinks he's not looking.]

Miki:  {Yuu is usually so distant.  Is this what he's really like, or
       is it just because we've come here...?}

[Miki tries glancing at Yuu again, only to find him looking back.  She
blushes and quickly turns her gaze away.]

Miki:  {When will I be able to tell him...?}

Yuu:  (concerned) Miki?

[The sudden intrusion of Yuu's voice jars Miki out of her internal

Miki:  What?

Yuu:  I asked if you were feeling all right.  You look a little
      flushed, and in this heat...

Miki:  (shaking her head) Oh.  No, I'm fine.  I just had something on
       my mind.

Yuu:  Mmm.

Miki:  What?

Yuu:  Nothing.  (pause) Let's get some ice cream.

Miki:  (blinks) What?

Yuu:  (peering inquisitively at Miki) Are you sure you're all right?

Miki:  Yes!

[Yuu shrugs and turns his head, scanning the storefronts.]

Yuu:  There must be one around here somewhere.  This place thrives on

Miki:  (slightly lost) One...?  Why are we going to get ice cream?

Yuu:  Why not?  That's what people do in the summer.  I think maybe
      this way...

[Yuu grasps Miki's wrist and pulls her along an intersecting road.
Miki blushes furiously, glancing at the people on the sidewalk.]

Miki:  {What is he doing?  With all of these people...}

[Looking back at Yuu, she calms slightly.  She continues to allow
herself to be pulled along.]

Miki:  {So many couples... they must think we're a couple, too.  That
       would be...  I wish...}  Yuu... -kun?

Yuu:  (glancing back over his shoulder) Hmm?

[Miki's eyes meet Yuu's for a brief moment, and she falters.]

Miki:  I... wanted to talk to you later.  Tonight.  (eyes downcast) If
       you can, I mean.

Yuu:  Sure.

Miki:  (continuing) Unless you...  (blinks) You can?

[Yuu nods, faintly puzzled.  Miki tries to smile gratefully, but the
expression comes out looking somewhat sickly.  If Yuu notices, he
doesn't comment.]

Miki:  Thanks.

Yuu:  No problem.  (pause) Is it about what you were thinking about

Miki:  (hesitantly) You might say that, yes.  It-- I--.

[A familiar, joyful voice, which originates from off to their side,

Suzu:  Yuu-san!  Smile!

[An expression of surprise on his face, Yuu turns.  There is a sharp
snap, followed by a whirring noise.]

Yuu:  Suzu-chan?!

Miki:  (simultaneously, incredulous) Suzu... -chan...?

[Across the street, the child model lowers a camera from in front of
her face.  She is wearing a simple sea-green and white outfit, and
carrying a bag over one shoulder.  She beams happily, and vigorously
waves to Yuu and Miki with her free hand.  She looks right, then left,
and, seeing no traffic, dashes across the street to meet them.]

Suzu:  (hyper-cheerful) Hi!  Miss me?

Miki:  What are you doing here?  Another assignment?

Suzu:  Nope!  I had the day off today, so I thought I'd go to the
       beach.  I was really surprised to see the two of you, though.
       (embarrassed) That reminds me... thanks for your help during
       the session.  Some of the pictures turned out really well!  I
       think I brought some copies...

[She shifts her bag off of her shoulder, opens it, and begins looking
through it.  Yuu and Miki glance at each other; Miki shrugs slightly.]

Yuu:  I'm glad to hear it went well.

Miki:  Do you usually bring a camera when you go to the beach?  Aren't
       you worried that you might drop it in the water somehow?

Suzu:  Oh, that?  Photography is sort of a hobby, I guess.  I like to
       take pictures of beautiful things.  A friend told me that
       there's a place where you can see the most incredible sunsets
       over the ocean... 

Miki:  (distant) I see...

Suzu:  Do you know a place like that?  I'm worried I might not find
       it, the directions weren't that good.

Miki:  Eh?  No, I don't know any place like that...

Yuu:  Neither do I.  We can help you look, though.  (brief pause) What
      is it that makes that place special?  You could probably see the
      sunset as well from anywhere on the beach.

Suzu:  (reaching into the bag) Aha!  Found it!

[She removes a photograph from the bag and hands it to Yuu.]

Suzu:  What do you think, Yuu?  (smiles) Do you mind if I call you
       "Yuu"?  I like the way it sounds.

[Miki takes a step sideways, bringing her closer to Yuu, who is
looking at the photo.  From this perspective, we can see that it is
one of the earlier shots featuring Suzu.  In the shot, she is standing
up to her ankles in the surf with her dress billowing in the breeze.
Her head is thrown back in carefree laughter, or a good imitation of
it, and one hand is outstretched, not quite toward the camera.]

Yuu:  (distracted) If you want.  It's a wonderful picture, Suzu-chan.
      Good enough to be an ad itself, I'd say.

Suzu:  (pleased) Isn't it great?  Yasuragi-san was impressed with

[Miki blinks.]

Yuu:  But Miki's not in this picture.

Suzu:  She's not?  (peering around Yuu at the photo) I guess I gave
       you the wrong one...

[She reaches into the bag momentarily and produces a second
photograph, which she hands to Miki.]

Suzu:  That's the one I meant.

[The photograph is apparently from late in the session; the sun is low
in the sky, and the shadows are elongated.  This doesn't disturb the
effect of the shot, however.  In it, Miki and Suzu are kneeling across
from each other on the sand; however, their faces are turned toward
the camera.  Suzu is smiling in much the same manner as in the other
shot, and one of her hands is raised, as if to wave.  Miki, in
contrast, is much more subdued -- her smile is soft and mysterious,
her eyes turned just slightly downward, and her hands folded in her

Miki:  So this is what it looked like...

Yuu:  (peering over Miki's shoulder) Wow!  It looks like the extra
      work your mother did wasn't wasted.

Suzu:  (nodding) Yasuragi-san said that was just the smile he'd
       wanted, Miki-san.  (grinning) I think he wants to work with you

Yuu:  (to Miki) It seems you've become popular.

Miki:  (blushing) Not really...  (firm) Besides, I don't want to do
       that again.

Suzu:  I thought you had fun, Miki-san.

Miki:  It's not that, it's just... I...

Yuu:  Well?

Miki:  (glaring at Yuu) I don't want that.

[Yuu shrugs.]

Suzu:  That's too bad.

Yuu:  When will you begin filming the actual commercial, Suzu-chan?

Suzu:  (smiling) This Monday.  With any luck, it won't take too long.

Miki:  Good luck, then.

Suzu:  Thanks, Miki-san.  (to Yuu) You're going back home tomorrow,
       aren't you?

Yuu:  The day after, actually.

Suzu:  Oh?  (smiling) Maybe I'll see you tomorrow, then.

[Yuu chuckles.]

Miki:  (skeptically) Maybe.

Suzu:  Bye, Yuu.  Bye, Miki-san.

[She waves cheerfully and runs off toward the beach.  Yuu and Miki
stand and watch her until she turns the corner, then slowly continue
walking themselves.]

Yuu:  That was different.

[Miki looks at him, puzzled, and he continues.]

Yuu:  She seems to be a pretty normal girl, when she isn't working.
      I'd wondered.

Miki:  You think she's normal?

Yuu:  (shrugging) Normal for someone so famous, anyway.  It can't be
      very easy for her.

Miki:  Why not?  When I was a little younger, I... knew people who
       would have given anything to be in her place.  It's not as if
       she doesn't like her job.

Yuu:  That's true.  I doubt she has very many friends, though.  It'd
      be hard for her even to go to a regular school, if her schedule
      this week is any indication.

Miki:  I'd guess she isn't usually quite this busy.

Yuu:  Even so.

Miki:  You like her.

Yuu:  (nodding slightly) In a way.  (shrugging) Someone should.

[Miki smiles faintly at Yuu and shakes her head.  The two continue
walking, in silence.]


[Scene:  Beach House, Dining Room]

[A large room near the kitchen.  It is furnished in Western style,
containing a long, rectangular table with many chairs around it.  It
seems several hours have passed, for most of the chairs are occupied
by the various Koishikawas and Matsuuras.  Only Chiyako and Meiko are
not present.]

Rumi:   ...So, then, he decided to follow the woman to Hokkaido, but
        he didn't know that she'd changed her mind, and...

[Miki, who is not really listening, and Anju, who seems enthralled by
the story, nod.]

Jin:  I still think we should have gone to see the thriller instead.

Youji:  The yakuza story?  That did look pretty good...

Yuu:  Why not do that next time, then?

Jin:  (sighing) It's no good.  Rumi doesn't like those movies.

Rumi:  (interrupting her monologue for a moment) That's not true.  I'd
       just rather see a love story, if it's a choice between the two.

Jin:  (wryly) It's always a choice between the two.

Anju:  (to Rumi) What happened after she met her old boyfriend?

Miki:  (to herself) I wonder whether Meiko and Chiyako-san are
       finished yet?

Chiyako:  (offscreen) That's right!

[Everyone at the table turns toward the kitchen.  Chiyako is standing
in the doorway, holding a large bowl; Meiko, behind and to one side of
her, is carrying a tray.  The two come forward to the table.]

Youji:  Oh, it's ready.

Yuu: (standing)  Do you need any help with it?

[Anju gives Meiko a pointed glance.  The older twin does her best to
resolutely ignore it.]

Meiko:  Ah... I think that we--

Chiyako:  (cheerfully) That's nice of you.  You could help bring out
          the other plates...

[Yuu nods and walks into the kitchen, followed by Chiyako, then Meiko.
Miki begins to stand, but is apparently waved away by one of the
three, as she sits back down.  The three return, carrying half a dozen
dishes between them, and sit down.  With a chorus of "itadakimasu," (2)
the extended family begins to eat.  Toward the end of the meal, Meiko
catches Anju's eyes.  They lock gazes for a moment, until Anju sighs
and turns away.]

Anju:  (standing) That was terrific!  'Niichan, can you come to our
       room when you're finished?  I wanted to show you something.

Yuu:  (glancing at Miki) If it won't take too long...

Anju:  (brightly) It won't, it'll be over before you know it.

[Meiko winces, but nobody else seems to notice.]

Yuu:  (shrugging) All right, then.

[Anju heads to her room to wait for Yuu.  One by one, the others
finish eating.  Meiko, Rumi, and Youji begin to clean up; Jin and
Chiyako stroll out onto the deck; Miki also walks outside, and the
sound of her footsteps descending the stairs toward the beach can be
heard.  Yuu goes to meet Anju.]

2 - "Itadakimasu" literally means "to (humbly) receive."  It's
customary to say it before one begins to eat.  There's no English
equivalent with the same nuances.


[Scene:  Beach House, Girls' Bedroom]

[Anju is sitting cross-legged on the bed, holding a large book in her
hands.  The book's cover proclaims that it is an illustrated history
of the Tokugawa period.  It's open to somewhere in the middle, and
Anju is staring down at the page, frowning.]

Anju:  How does 'neechan read things like this without falling asleep?

[There is a knock on the door.  Anju straightens up and smiles as Yuu
walks in.]

Yuu:  Isn't it a little early for -you- to start on your homework, An?

Anju:  (nervously) Well, I wanted to get an early start this year...

Yuu:  Meiko's study habits must be rubbing off.  (approaching) Was this
      what you wanted to show me?

Anju:  (nodding) Mm-hmm.  I, um, had a question about... (pointing to
       a spot on the page) this.

[Yuu sits down next to Anju, and glances at the indicated passage.]

Yuu:  The disposition of the army?  That seems pretty clear to me.

[Anju chuckles nervously.  There is a second knock at the door; this
time, Meiko enters.  Yuu acknowledges her, then turns back to Anju.]

Yuu:  What was it you didn't understand?

Anju:  (rubbing her forehead with one hand) Well, I was just thinking

[Her hand darts forward from her forehead to poke his.]

Anju:  You should be yourself again.

Yuu:  I sh--

[He is cut off as he momentarily wavers, leaning heavily against the
bed.  Looking up again, he blinks in confusion.]

Yuu:  What am I doing in here...?

Meiko:  Don't you remember, oniichan?

Yuu:  (frowning) Not very clearly.  There was something I needed to

Anju:  (nodding) You helped me with a question I had.  Thanks for
       coming, 'niichan.

Yuu:  (blinking) I did?  Ah... you're welcome, but--

[Meiko gently lays one hand on Yuu's head.]

Meiko:  You must be very tired.  (her voice takes on a resonant
        quality) *Sleep.*

[Yuu opens his mouth to ask a question... then falls backwards onto
the bed, eyes closed, deeply sleeping.]

Meiko:  (to Anju) So that's how you did it.

Anju:  (nodding) Are you sure it was a good idea to put him to sleep
       like that?

Meiko:  No... but it's probably better if he's resting while the
        memories come back.  (pause) They do come back, right?

Anju:  Well...

Meiko:  An...!

Anju:  They do!  They do... sort of.  They won't be too clear, though,
       especially the last few hours...

Meiko:  (sighing) I guess that can't be helped.  (sternly) I hope
        you've learned something from this.

Anju:  (nodding dejectedly) Don't get caught.

Meiko:  An!

Anju:  (sticking her tongue out) Just kidding.

[Despite herself, Meiko smiles.]

Meiko:  All right... but this is serious, An.  We can't use the Power
        that easily.

Anju:  (innocently) Then how are we going to get 'niichan back to his
       room without waking him?

[Meiko stares blankly at Anju for a few moments.]

Meiko:  (weakly) Just... this once, then... okay?

[Anju nods and gently lifts Yuu telekinetically.]

Anju:  Better make sure Jin-san and Rumi-san aren't in the hallway.

[Meiko nods and walks out into the hall.  A moment later, she calls

Meiko:  It's okay.

[The twins quickly move Yuu into his bedroom.]

Anju:  I'm sorry for all the trouble...

Meiko:  (softly) It's all right...  (smiling) No harm done, right?


[Scene:  Beach]

[The strand beneath the beach house is almost deserted, now.  Miki
sits nearby, alone, not far above the water line.  She is hugging her
knees to her chest, watching as the surf creeps closer to her feet.
She glances toward the beach house once, but otherwise sits still.
Finally, with a soft sigh, she bows her head, so that her forehead
rests on her knees.  The waves crash right at her feet, and the spray
falls on her skin and hair, causing them to glisten in the moonlight.]