Teal colored eyes slowly opened, awaking from their slumber. They scanned the room; white, same as always. Everything was extremely clean. Even if you tried you wouldn’t find a single piece of dust anywhere. The sole occupant lifted herself into a sitting position on the bed. She looked around taking in the familiar environment. There were several monitors and other various kinds of medical equipment, in the exact place they had been for years.
She looked to her left and on the other side of the glass wall that separated her room and the hallway; she watched as a few people dressed in white coats were walking the halls on their usual routines as she had seen many times. Then she looked slightly to the right of the wall where the door to her room would have been. In its place was a decontamination chamber. It contained a number of white suits that would completely cover a person’s body when worn.
Yes, Miku Hatsune was in a hospital, as she had been for her entire life. She had been diagnosed at a very early age with an extremely rare disease that basically left her with a useless immune system. Even the smallest bacteria would render her incredibly sick, sometimes on the verge of death. It was this reason why she lived in the hospital. Because of her condition she was monitored and had tests taken regularly to see if there was any hope of a cure, or at least treatment. Miku sincerely hoped that a cure could be found, but she had remained in ‘clean rooms’ for sixteen years.
The room she was in was quite a bit larger than usual hospital rooms. It was only natural as it was the only room Miku was allowed to be in. The teal haired girl got out of the bed and did a few stretches, and then began walking around the room. She walked over to where there was a small exercise bench, and a treadmill. The thought of herself becoming ‘Large’ due to no movement was out of the question. She actually was quite thin. Petite, even.
She then moved on to a corner of the room where a television was placed along with a love-seat couch, a chair, a table and a few game consoles. Being alone can be boring so she needed things to eat up her time. The tealette made her way over to the window that looked outside. The view, by normal standards wasn’t anything special, but it was to Miku. There were a few trees, a small pond and in the distance she could see the taller buildings of the city a few miles away. She would often spend hours just watching as clouds would slowly make their way across the sky, as planes were coming in to land at the local airport, or as cars made their daily commute into the city for various reasons. Even when it was a stormy day, Miku would simply gaze outside at the rain, listening to it patter on the thick glass separating her from it. Lightning was a favorite of hers. It was so fascinating the way it would crash on the ground or streak across the sky.
Miku then went to her favorite corner of the room. Sitting alone was a black piano. She would spend so much time sitting in front of the ivory keys. Music was her one true passion. She loved to play and she loved to sing. Even if it was only herself that would hear. That often wasn’t the case though. On the floor directly above her was the children’s ward, and Miku would occasionally receive letters written by the children who would listen to her music explaining how much they loved her songs. These always made the tealette happy. It was one of her few connections to the outside world. She would write back to the kids, thanking them. But they were usually never in the hospital long enough for friendships to be made.
Miku took a look at the calendar hanging on the wall; August 31st. Today was Miku’s birthday. She was seventeen now. It’d supposed to be a happy occasion with a party and friends and presents, but not for her. She couldn’t have a party because of all the germs and such. She might receive a gift from the hospital staff. Last year they had gotten her the new game console and a few games for her to play. She enjoyed playing the games, but it was always better if there was another person for her to share the fun with.
A lot of times she would spend time with her nurse, Haku. She was a kind person who had known Miku since she started to work at the hospital a few years back. The teal haired girl considered her to be a close friend. Speaking of her, she had just entered the decontamination chamber and was putting on the suit needed to be in Miku’s room. The door opened and she came in.
“Good morning Miku. I have your breakfast here.” She smiled at the teal girl, as she carried in a tray of food and placed it on the table.
“Morning. Thanks, I’m starved.” The tealette walked over to the table, sat in the chair, and began eating. There was a bowl of cereal, some toast, and a glass of orange juice; all of which were safe for her to eat.
“So, how are you feeling today?”
“Fine. Same as usual.”
“That’s good, would you like to watch some TV?”
Haku turned on the television and switched to the news broadcast. She knew the teal haired girl liked to hear what was going on in the world even though she wasn’t really a part of it. They were talking about the weather when the channel switched over, saying how it was going to be a beautiful day and whatnot. After the weather report, the news anchors started talking about an upcoming Luka Megurine concert. Miku stopped eating and watched the screen as they gave information about the show while clips of previous performances played.
Luka was extremely talented; not only as a singer but a dancer as well. She commanded the stage when she was on it. She was a worldwide sensation. And Miku loved her songs as well. She had most of them on her mp3 player. There was something special about her voice.
Her thought was interrupted by a beeping sound coming from inside Haku’s suit.
“Oh, I’m being paged. I gotta go Miku. Sorry, but I’ll see you later. And happy birthday, dear.” She offered a smile as she made her way back into the decon chamber and began taking off the protective suit. Miku turned back towards the TV but they had already moved on to something else. She was slightly disappointed, but continued to watch nevertheless; learning about other things going on in the world.
It was noon-ish now and Miku had been alone since Haku left that morning. The teal girl had occupied her time mostly by gazing out the window. She wished she could go outside but knew that it was not possible. She often imagined all the sorts of things she would do if her dream were to come true. Just then a knock was heard on the glass wall. Miku turned around and saw a girl she had not been expecting to see, and upon the surprise of seeing her, a big smile made its way onto her face.
The pinkette waved at her through the glass and then walked into the decon room. Miku anxiously waited for the long process to be over. When it finally was and the pink haired girl entered the room she was immediately embraced in a big hug. Luka happily returned the gesture.
“What are you doing here?!”
“Well I came to see you, silly. I mean, it is your birthday. How could I not?”
“You remembered!” Miku was so happy at this moment, she didn’t even care that the pinkette was wearing a protective suit.
“Of course I remembered. I even got you this.” She brought up a small box that that she thankfully had not dropped when she was suddenly hit by the teal blur. “Happy Birthday, Miku!”
“Oh, you didn’t have to get me anything.”
“What are you talking about? People get presents on their birthdays. So go on and open it.”
“Okay!” Miku was very excited, as she ripped the decorative paper off the box. Free of its wrapping, the small white box held in the tealette’s hand was slowly opened, and inside was something that caused Miku’s eyes to sparkle more than the object itself. She reached a hand in and delicately pulled out the gift. It was a necklace with a small pink butterfly that glimmered as the light passed through the jewels.
“Oh my… It’s beautiful! Luka… I don’t know what to say. Thank you so much, I love it!”
“You’re very welcome sweetheart. And that’s kind of only half the present. See, I had two of them made. One pink, and the other teal.” The pinkette brought a hand up to her chest. “I have the teal colored one, and I’m going to wear it all the time.” She smiled shyly as she observed the reaction on the teal girl’s face.
“… Luka…” a happy tear started to stream down her cheek, only to be wiped away by the plastic-like feel of Luka’s covered hand. She embraced the pink haired girl once again, and held it for several minutes. They eventually parted and Miku offered the necklace to Luka.
“Would you mind putting it on me?”
Miku turned around and Luka wrapped the necklace around her neck fastening at the back. The teal girl turned to face the pinkette and gave a smile before rushing off to look at herself in the mirror. The necklace hung delicately between her collar bones. It contrasted lovely with her teal colored hair and eyes.
“So what do you want to do today, Miku?”
“I don’t know. Anything I guess. As long as you’re here I’m happy no matter what.”
The two girls smiled at each other. They had met about a year and a half ago. Well, maybe closer to two years. Luka had come to the hospital as the result of a stage accident while rehearsing one night when she tripped on a cable and sprained her ankle. She noticed the large room at the end of the hall with its glass wall, and a girl playing the piano. She was curious and made her way over to the girl on her newly acquired crutches. She had reached the room and the sound of the girl’s playing was able to pierce through the glass where Luka could hear it.
The girl playing the melodies had her back towards the pinkette and was not aware that anyone was watching her. She continued to bring out the tones and chords that made up a simple tune that Luka found quite pleasant. She stood there admiring the teal haired girl until the song’s conclusion, at which point she turned around and noticed she had an audience. And not just any audience, it was Luka Megurine. The tealette ran over to the glass and stared at the famous songstress.
Luka smiled at the teal haired girl wondering why she was in such a room to begin with. She looked to her left and noticed a decontamination area, and she wondered if this girl had some crazy disease, like small pox, or the plague. But that thought was quickly pushed out of her mind as the petite girl had no trace of bumps on her smooth pale skin. And she also looked very healthy. She couldn’t figure it out. She was approached by a nurse with long silver hair.
“Her name is Miku Hatsune. She has a rare Immunodeficiency. She can’t come into contact with any kind of bacteria or she’ll become incredibly sick.”
“That’s so sad.” Luka looked at the nurse with a frown. Meanwhile Miku just watched as the two pairs of lips communicated with one another. Then the nurse caught her attention she was making a gesture that seemed to be asking for permission to enter the room. The teal girl nodded and the two outsiders made their way over to decon and eventually came into Miku’s room. Luka was unable to bring her crutches in and was limping along with the help of nurse Haku.
“You’re Luka Megurine! I love your music.”
“Well, thank you. It’s nice to meet you.”
The three of them went over and sat around the table in the room and talked for a while, mostly about Miku. Luka learned that the tealette had spent her whole life in this hospital. How she was an orphan, and how she loved to play the piano. She seemed like a perfectly happy teenage girl, despite the fact that she was isolated from the rest of the world. They chatted for close to three hours until Haku warned them that visiting hours were about to be over.
They said their goodbyes and Luka promised to return. And just like she promised, she did. She continued to come every once in a while when she could fit it into her busy schedule. They became friends, best friends even. They would share music with each other; Luka sometimes playing brand new, not yet released tracks for the tealette. The only unfortunate part was that Miku was always separated from Luka. Even in something as simple as a hug goodbye, between the two was a barrier that if not kept would result in disaster for the teal haired girl.
They sat on the couch together simply talking. It had been a while since they had seen each other as Luka was doing some concerts overseas. Miku was curious about what Luka had been doing during their time apart.
“...and then we were driving down the road and there was this huge car explosion just down the street! It was soooo big!”
“No way!? Was anybody hurt?”
“Actually as it turns out, they were filming a movie.” The two girls laughed at the situation she had described.
“So what about you Miku? What’s going on with you?”
“Nothing new really, aside from rearranging the room a bit.”
“I noticed. The piano used to be over there. And the bed was in that corner. And… I don't think I’ve seen that poster before.” There was a poster of Luka winking with a microphone.
“It’s new. Now I can see your face every day.” She smiled playfully at Luka.
“Oh, I see, haha. I would show up in person everyday if I could you know.”
“But you have your job and stuff, I wouldn’t want you to give that up. You have a life outside this room. A great life. And getting to see you just once in a while makes it all the more special.”
[Bing-bong - “Visiting hours will be over in ten minutes.”]
“Well that stinks.” Miku was disappointed.
“Yeah, it really does. I guess I’d better get going then. I don’t want to get in trouble like that one time remember?” She was referring to one day when Miku hid her under the bed but was caught when Haku came in to check on her, and Luka sneezed resulting in her being thrown out of the hospital. It was actually quite funny to think about. She got up and opened her arms expecting a hug from the teal girl. But she was shaking her head no.
“I actually have a birthday wish…” she was twiddling with her new necklace as she looked down at it in her fingers.”
“Ok. What is it sweetheart? Anything.”
“Well, actually… I want to hug you… without the suit.”
Luka was stunned. It was not possible. If she took even one step into the room without it, Miku could be exposed to germs. “Oh, Miku. You know I can’t do that. No matter how much I want to be able to do the same thing. It’s too dangerous for you.”
“No! It’s not. I figured out a way. I’ve taken these immuno-boosters that should help a little and if you go in the decon room and spray yourself like crazy with the disinfectant I believe I can withstand it for a few moments.” Miku seemed extremely determined to get her wish.
“That’s a good plan, but it’s still too risky. I wouldn’t be able to live with myself if I got you sick.”
She had the most sincere, sad puppy dog look possible. She wanted this more than anything, and she was willing to take the enormous risk in order to do it. Luka was on the verge of agreeing to the tealette’s plan. She knew that she shouldn’t do it. The risk was too high. But she also wanted to be able to feel the teal girl in her uncovered hands. And it was this want that pushed her over the edge.
“… Ok. But we have to be real quick about it.”
Luka made her way into the decontamination chamber and removed the top half of her suit. She decided to leave the bottom half, hoping to minimize exposure as much as possible. She then grabbed a can of disinfectant sitting on the shelf and began to spray it all over her upper body. When she was convinced it was enough, she kept going; not willing to take any chances. Meanwhile Miku waited anxiously for the pinkette to return.
“Okay, are you ready?” Luka shouted from the chamber.
“Yes.” Miku was slightly nervous. She had never really touched another person before.
Luka ran out of the chamber right in front of Miku and held her arms out. The teal haired girl tentatively reached out and embraced her. They only held the embrace for a few seconds, but they were some of the longest seconds either had ever experienced. Miku felt Luka’s back; it was soft with a hint of muscle tone. Probably from all the dancing she did. She had her face on top of the pinkette’s ample buxom. It was soft and warm and she felt the rapid heartbeat just beneath on her cheek.
Miku was so small and petite in Luka’s arms. She held her close; her head resting on top of an ocean of teal. The girl was soft and frail and at this moment there was no regret in either of them. After they separated they looked into each other’s eyes for a brief moment seeing the satisfaction and happiness in the other. Then remembering the danger, Luka quickly ran back into the chamber and closed the door behind her.
It seemed as though they had pulled it off. They had embraced each other with nothing in between. Luka smiled as she relived those few seconds again in her mind. And then a sound was heard that turned this warm happy feeling into one of dread and terror.
No. Luka looked back though the glass divider at Miku with desperate eyes. Please. No. The teal girl seemed fine though. Perhaps it was just a throat-clearing cough. Luka was relieved slightly, but then…
CoughCoughCough-CoughCough Miku was on her knees; buckling over on the ground, coughing her lungs out. Splatters of red fell on the floor in front of her.
“MIKU!!” She wanted to run in there immediately but she needed to put the suit back on. Her scream had alerted a few nurses within earshot who came running into the decontamination chamber. The two nurses quickly got prepared to enter the tealette’s room while Luka just stood there in shock. Oh my god… this is my fault… Miku…
The nurses rushed in and helped Miku lay down in her bed, while she continued to cough uncontrollably. Even more medical staff had appeared, decontaminated, and entered the petite girl’s room. They were hooking her up to the many monitors and machines that were located next to her bed. They were all trying their best to help the tealette; injecting various serums into her pale skin.
Luka was frozen in her spot inside the decon chamber. At least until she was forcibly pulled out by even more nurses. She was asked if she knew anything that that would have caused her to become like this. Luka, in a panic, told the entire story. She mentioned the spray, the short period of time, and the immuno-boosters Miku said she took.
“Immuno-Boosters? She wasn’t given any immuno-boosters.”
“What? Are you sure?”
“Absolutely, there is no record of her receiving any from the staff, and she couldn’t have gotten them herself.”
She lied..? Why would she do that? She looked through the glass at the teal girl, still heaving violently as she struggled for air. The doctors were placing a mask over her face to try and help her get oxygen.
“Ms. Megurine, we’re gonna have to ask you to leave.”
Through shuttering eyes, Miku watched as Luka was led towards the front of the hospital. She was leaving. ...No. Her coughing suddenly became much worse; the various machines hooked up to her started beeping and sounding alarms. She was dying.
CoughCough “I…” Cough “want. Lu-” CoughCough “-ka,” Cough
She reached a hand out in the direction of the pinkette as if trying to grab her and pull her back, and then it fell, hanging limply off the side of the bed. All the beeping the machines were giving off had all become silent except for one, which was giving off a single continuous tone.
Luka stopped dead in her tracks. There was an extremely faint high pitched sound buzzing through the air. Her highly trained ear recognized it as E flat. She looked behind her and saw the motionless body of the teal haired girl. Without even thinking about it she took off running. She rushed toward the decontamination room and was about to enter when she was stopped by security. They were not going to let her, or anyone who wasn’t medical staff in.
The medical staff surrounding Miku had been attempting to use a defibrillator to restart the tealette’s heart, but they were unsuccessful. They began to turn off the machines one after another, a gloomy atmosphere overtaking the whole room.
Luka, being restrained by two security guards and struggling to get free looked at Miku’s lifeless form just lying there on her bed. The sight practically tore the pinkette’s heart in two. This can’t be happening. It can’t be. Not because of me, No. No! NO! Tears burst from her eyes as she screamed out her name.