Beauty and the Beast
Beauty and the Beast
June 22nd, 2010, 04:34 AM
Beauty and the Beast
You know what's really awesome about Godzilla? He's a character that is completely open to interpretation. So, because of that, I got up the guts to do this. I've written a modern retelling of the romantic fairy tale, Beauty and the Beast, starring Miki as Beauty and GMK Godzilla as the Beast. GMK is the ugliest form of Godzilla I've ever seen, so he's perfect for this role. That means he can talk and acts human, and he sounds exactly like Josh Groban. This is important
Also, Miki isn't psychic in this story.
You all have seen my "pet" Godzilla in my other stories. Now, in this, I shall introduce you to my other version of Godzilla: BeastGoji!
Swearing(will be caught in the filters)
Adult content(not GRAPHIC though)
Godzilla as an "anthro."
My fic could safely air as a movie on Lifetime without anything being edited out. However, if any of the above warned content will bother you, or if you hate anything related to "furries," then please leave now. Thanks.
This story also has a soundtrack. These are the songs Godzilla is seen singing throughout the fic. I'll link to all but one because...well, you'll see.
All songs are sung by Josh Groban. Please give them a try--he's very talented and you'll see why I chose him to be Godzilla's "voice" in the story.
Songs in order of appearance:
Remember When it Rained
Never Let Go
Un Giorno Per Noi
So She Dances
Solo Por Ti
In Her Eyes
Thanks a lot. Enjoy the show!
Last edited by Cyndi; June 22nd, 2010 at 12:19 PM.
Re: Beauty and the Beast
June 22nd, 2010, 04:34 AM
Re: Beauty and the Beast
Moonlight fell across glazed pearlescent eyes. A figure rose slowly, swayed and collapsed sideways onto a floor of black marble. Raspy breathing sounds echoed off the walls, occasionally punctuated by coughing. The source of the noise stared blankly at the open door leading outside. Reflected in the door's lacquer finish was the gray face of a monster. The lessons that face taught its owner were painful and lonely.
Up ahead, a plasma TV flickered with images of Tokyo Fashion Week. It was the only light in the room besides the moon, and soon, on that very catwalk, she
would appear. He loved her enough to let her go. At least she didn't have to see this part. Death would mean freedom from this fifty year curse.
He closed his eyes to wait for the end. Maybe it was better this way.
He came into the spotlight as a rich young lad who had everything a boy could desire. Money, talent, fame, a lavish estate on Odo island and the affections of any pretty girl he wanted. As a singer with an amazing baritone voice, his rise to fame was all but assured. Then things went terribly wrong. He grew arrogant and selfish because of his good looks and talent. And he was a beautiful boy; tall with pale skin, brown eyes like chocolate pools and wavy dark hair that framed his face.
But his lovely smile always carried daggers. He turned his nose up at anyone who wasn't as lovely as him. The crippled were unclean. The obese were lazy slobs. The scarred were freaks.
He even refused to perform onstage if he could see an unattractive audience member. His fanbase suffered terribly after this. Some of his female fans developed eating disorders in order to reach his standard of beauty. Many people criticized his arrogance. He didn't mind the critics. Heck, they were probably ugly themselves and jealous of his prestige.
Then came the hour that changed everything.
One stormy night, he was awakened by the doorbell. He looked at the clock. Three fifty-five in the morning.
"Go away!" he shouted as rain pelted the window above his bed. Sweat plastered his curls to his pale forehead and cheeks.
The doorbell stopped, but the person outside knocked and the sound echoed through the house like church bells.
"Grr," the boy threw on a black velvet bathrobe and made his way downstairs. The house was dark, lit only by the lightning flashing outside. He yanked the door open to find an old, soaking wet woman dressed in black and orange rags. She gazed up at him with eyes of the most beautiful sapphire blue. Their beauty was lost on him, for all he could see was her wrinkled face and scraggly white hair. He sneered, "What do you want? It's four in the morning!"
The old woman begged, "Please, I need shelter. I have nowhere to go and this rain caught me unprepared. Let me rest inside your door and I will be gone in the morning."
But the boy wrinkled his nose. His dark eyes narrowed, "You'll get my floor dirty."
"I'll clean the floor where I sleep." She shivered in the cold. "I know I'm not much to look at, but appearances aren't everything."
"That's just something ugly people say to feel better." The lad snorted. "Get out of here, you hag! You're stinking up my house."
Narrowing her eyes, the old woman whispered, "So be it. Your pride will be your downfall."
"Whatever." The boy moved to slam the door. He was surprised when the pathetic old hag grabbed the handle. No matter how hard he tried to close it, she wouldn't budge.
The old beggar's eyes shone in the darkness. Suddenly, she levitated into the air and the rags on her body began to fan out. A blinding light erupted from her and the boy suddenly found himself staring at a gigantic, yet beautiful moth floating on colorful gossamer wings. Mothra beat her wings once and hovered above the house. Her musical voice boomed in the boy's mind, ~I warned you not to judge on appearances. Now it is time to pay the price for your pride!~
"No!" cried the lad, "Please, I-I'm sorry! I-I didn't know who you were!"
~Your apologies have come too late.~ Mothra flapped once more and golden dust rained down from her wings, covering the boy and the house. ~I can not let your arrogance go unpunished. May the ugliness in your soul manifest itself physically!~
"Stop! No!" he held his hands up to her and gasped when he saw horrible claws grow from his fingertips. His hair fell out in clumps that landed on his reptilian feet. There was a ripping sound as something tore through the back of his robe. He was becoming a beast! "P-please...I beg you! I've learned my lesson, just don't do this! Change me back!"
~I am not without mercy. This island will be a place of repose for you. But once you swim beyond the black stone standing up in the sea,~ Mothra turned her head to indicate a tall rock fifty feet from the sandy shore, ~
you will grow. And you will have to face men, for their split atom is to be your main sustenance. People will die because of you, and they will hate you for it. You will be nothing but an animal in their eyes. They will look at you and judge you the same way you looked at and judged those who were not so visibly beautiful. Such is the price you must pay for your arrogance.~ She gave a screech that could shatter glass. ~A monster you shall remain until the day you learn to love and that person learns to see beyond your hideousness and love you in return.~
"You..." he fell to his knees, "I...I HATE YOU!"
~Someday, little man, you will thank me.~ Mothra's benevolent blue eyes twinkled eerily in the dim light. She flapped up over the house and vanished in a flurry of wind, leaving him alone in the darkness.
Two days later, a horrible monster devastated Japan. Natives of Odo Island saw the beast in the water and believed it to be Godzilla, the legendary god who lived beneath the sea. The name stuck because the arrogant boy was too embarrassed to speak up and tell the people his real name.
Ashamed of his hideous appearance and behavior, Godzilla hid himself away in his secluded estate on Odo Island. He always kept up with technology--communicating with the outside world through mail, the telephone and eventually the internet. He did everything in his power to avoid meeting anyone face to face. Those who did glimpse him...well...nobody believed their stories of a man-sized Godzilla.
Godzilla tried desperately to ignore the raging desire for radioactive materials. He craved it like a smoker craved cigarettes. Every few months Godzilla was forced to sink submarines or steal nuclear reactors from Tokyo. He tried his best not to harm civilians. The Japanese saw his presence as a menace to their economy and tried to kill him at every opportunity. They went so far as to use a chemical weapon in the water in attempt to destroy him. Godzilla read about its construction in the newspaper, recognized the weapon on sight and beat a hasty retreat before the bubbles could rip his flesh away. After that, he tried digging up natural uranium ores hidden deep under the island. For a time that quelled his nuclear cravings, but when the ores were depleted he had to resume his old tactics. He returned to Tokyo in nineteen eighty four, took a reactor and disappeared again. He read the newspaper and watched the news daily to stay one step ahead of the weapons being developed for use against him. This allowed him to take down the Super X on his next visit to Japan's waters. Finding information became even easier with the advent of the internet--all the information he needed was just a click away.
Time was on Godzilla's side because he never aged, but his finances began to dwindle. Godzilla went shopping online for equipment and spent a year converting his garage into a soundproof recording studio so he could record albums from his house. Mothra was kind enough to let him keep his ability to sing. He learned to play every instrument he kept in his basement--including a grand piano, and mixed the music for his own songs whenever he could. If that was too difficult, he wrote it all down and sent it out to be played, recorded and returned so he could make the proper edits. Godzilla wrote songs and sang them with convincing, but false passion. Then he sent a demo to Reprise Records. They fell all over themselves and wanted to sign him on. He wrote back that his only stipulations were that his real name remained a secret, that he mixed his own music and he never had to appear in person or the deal was off. Reprise Records didn't like this and turned him down, then called him back when their stocks dropped.
They grudgingly agreed to Godzilla's terms and his album immediately went into production. His first new album in decades went platinum within two months. Money came in just in time and he used it to maintain his large house. As he made more and more money, he renovated his aged home to modernize it.
The public went crazy for Godzilla's music. Someone coined him as "the next Andrea Bocelli" and "one of the finest voices of the millennium". His albums flew off the shelves after that. In a year's time, he got word that he'd been nominated for a Grammy. Godzilla accepted the invitation, then waited for the day before the awards show to call in and claim he was sick and couldn't attend. He watched the proceedings on TV and learned he'd won best album of the year. It brought him no joy. The Grammy award itself came in the mail the day after Valentine's day. When Godzilla got it, he set it on his kitchen table and opened a bottle of Jack Daniels. He drank it while staring at the gold sculpture. Without anyone to share it with, the award was just a useless trinket. He growled, flicked the Grammy off the table with his tail and kicked it behind the refrigerator where it was quickly forgotten.
Godzilla's loneliness grew with each passing year. Talking on the phone or in chatrooms did little to fill the emptiness of his days. He fell deeper and deeper into angry despair, for who could learn to love an ugly beast like him?
Last edited by Cyndi; June 22nd, 2010 at 12:20 PM.
June 22nd, 2010, 04:34 AM
2. Fate Set Afloat
"Wash away the thoughts inside
that keep my mind away from you.
No more love and no more pride
and thoughts are all I have to do..."
Miki Saegusa sat down on her bed with her laptop and focused on the lovely baritone voice, which was like spun silk. The singer sounded nothing like the whiney pop stars populating the charts. No, this man had a clear tone and a pleasant vibrato and he didn't run down the scale between every note. Miki was dismayed that the cover had no photo of the singer. It was just a beach with an embossed letter G in the center. It stood out brilliantly against her purple bedspread. An online friend of hers recommended the album to her. It was certainly an odd find.
A window popped up on the laptop. Miki wiped her curly black bangs back and glanced over at her AIM buddy list. A user named "perfectsomeone35411" had just logged on. She settled on her stomach to type a greeting. The computer made a twinkling sound when she sent the message. Her text was purple like her bedspread. It took a few moments for her friend to respond. Long ago he'd warned her that he had terrible typing skills, so she was patient. Finally, his green text appeared.
MikiMew: HIIIII ps! =^o.o^=
perfectsomeone35411: hey what's up miki?
MikiMew: did some go-sees.
perfectsomeone35411: how did they go?
Miki paused, taking her hands off her keyboard. Tears gathered in her dark eyes. All she'd ever wanted after high school was to go into modeling. Everybody told her she had a pretty face and a nice body. But today...today she felt like every designer she visited conspired to crush her self esteem. Even worse--she went with friends, and they all got endless praise.
MikiMew: crappy. nobody liked my walk. they said i'm too short, my ears are too big, my skin isn't tan enough, my lips aren't pouty enough and according to one guy i need to lose ten pounds. they must want me to turn anorexic!
perfectsomeone35411: :'( i'm sorry
perfectsomeone35411: but u take good pics
MikiMew: big deal.......i wanna do runway. but after today i'm beginning to wonder if i should just go into accounting.
perfectsomeone35411: naw, u can do runway
perfectsomeone35411: remember that 1 pic u sent me where ur wearing that red kimono & holding a fan? ur a beauty & anybody who can't c that is blind.
Sweet words, but Miki wasn't convinced. She frowned and sat up.
MikiMew: *sigh* that's from a ton of makeup, good lights and airbrushing to even out my skin.
perfectsomeone35411: ur time is coming.
MikiMew: can we please just talk about something else?
perfectsomeone35411: *hug* k. did u get the cd?
MikiMew: oh! yes i got the g album. it's amazing
perfectsomeone35411: which song r u listening 2 now?
MikiMew: remember when it rained
MikiMew: so pretty.
perfectsomeone35411: every1 likes that one.
MikiMew: it's so sad! but still pretty. the singer must be hot with a voice like that. makes me wish i had a pic to drool over
perfectsomeone35411: lol u would
MikiMew: ~_^ just like you drool over britney spears from america.
perfectsomeone35411: i h8 her.
MikiMew: LOL ok fine paris hilton!
perfectsomeone35411: :X barffffffff. i liked ur pic better.
MikiMew: roflmao aww.
perfectsomeone35411: what does the song make u think about?
Miki leaned back for a moment to listen to chorus. There was such passion in that rich voice. At the same time it seemed to speak of loss and pain.
"Ooh...remember when it rained.
Felt the ground and looked up high
and called your name!
Ooh...remember when it rained.
In the darkness I remain..."
Shrugging, she put her hands back on the keyboard and resumed typing.
MikiMew: it's just very sad. like somebody died or left.
perfectsomeone35411: "tears of hope run down my skin. tears 4 u that will not dry. they magnify the 1 within & let the outside slowly die."
MikiMew: that just played. maybe he's waiting for someone?
perfectsomeone35411: or hoping
MikiMew: i wish we could meet.
perfectsomeone35411: i live 2 far away.
MikiMew: your japanese is great
perfectsomeone35411: lol ur english is better
perfectsomeone35411: gtg, munchies....
perfectsomeone35411: c u later
MikiMew: sayonara ps!
Miki logged off just as Remember When It Rained ended. Ten minutes later, she heard her father call, "Miki!"
"Huh?" she took off her headphones and ran to the door, banging her knee on the tansu next to the doorway. "Yeah?"
"I have to go back to the docks. Somebody spotted Godzilla in the water and the crane's still broke from his last visit. I need to help unload the fishing boats." Her father's gray winter coat rustled as he pulled it on. Then came the front door creaking open, letting chilly air into the living room. "Turn on the news and pay close attention to what they say."
"Okay, be careful!" Miki replied.
"Sure. Love you, see you la--" His cell phone rang. He grabbed it. "Hideo Saegusa. Oh? I'm on my way--yes, right now. Have Tanaka bring in the nets..." The door banged shut, cutting off his rough voice. Miki rushed back to her bedroom window and watched him hurry to his beat up lime green pickup truck. He was a lean, graying man who looked older than his real age of forty-nine. Years in the sun made his tan skin look creased and worn like the spine of a frequently-opened paperback book. She saw him stick a callused hand through the side window to wave, so she waved back and hurriedly turned on her TV.
The docks smelled like fish, salt water, wet cement, wet wood and diesel fuel. Noise came from every direction. Fish flopping, people shouting, engines roaring and thudding footsteps mixed with occasional airplane flying overhead.
Hideo ambled out of his truck and up to a large boat named Arashimaru. News reports said Godzilla wasn't headed their way, but the docks were being cleared as a precaution. Forklifts and flatbed trucks moved in each direction to transport cargo to safer places.
"Hideo!" cried a small man wearing a dirty blue stocking cap. "Hideo! I can't get in contact with Wagura!"
"What?" Hideo spun to face Tanaka. "He didn't dock?"
Tanaka shook his head. He took his cap off and scratched his messy hair, smearing an already dirty spot on his forehead. Then he said, "He did complain that his radio was acting funny. Could be it's failed and he didn't hear the reports about Godzilla."
Hideo's dark eyes narrowed. Wagura was one of his best friends. He didn't want to leave him out at sea when Godzilla could surface any moment! "I'll go out and get him."
"Are you insane?" asked Tanaka.
"I'll take a little boat. You just clear this dock and forget about me for awhile! That's an order," said Hideo, already turning to one of the smaller two-seater motorboats. He didn't check the fuel gauge, he just started the engine and sped away towards the choppy open water with white foam trailing in his wake.
"Wagura, this is Hideo, do you copy? Over!"
Hideo tried another frequency and repeated his message. Still nothing. He cursed that man's faulty radio and gunned the motorboat towards the larger fishing vessel floating up ahead. Wagura, a heavyset fellow in his forties wearing a white baseball cap to keep his bald head warm, was up on deck pulling in his half-full nets.
"Wagura!" Hideo shouted.
Wagura lifted a hand to wave. His expression grew concerned when he saw the franticness of Hideo's actions. "Hey, got a good catch here. What's the problem?"
"Your radio went out again! I've been trying to buzz you for half an hour! Godzilla was spotted and we have to get back."
A curse left Wagura's lips. Pulling in his nets with a jerk, he hurried to start his boat's engine. Right as he did that, it started to rain heavily and the water grew even more violent. Over the engine, Wagura called out, "I can't tow you with all these fish! Are you going to be all right following me back in this weather?"
"I'm fine!" shouted Hideo. The ocean swells made his boat rock. "You just get out of here before that lizard shows up!"
"Okay! But if your *** isn't docking in the next two hours, I'm coming back to get you!" Wagura yelled back, and they both laughed. Hideo gave him a wave and watched his boat turn in a slow arc to head northeast. He blinked when his own boat's engine began to rattle. It sputtered and died completely. Hideo swore under his breath, reaching down to turn the key and rev his engine back up. The little boat always stalled when the water got wild.
Suddenly, the waves lurched, making the tiny boat do a complete barrel roll. Hideo crashed into the cold sea. His cell phone and compass fell out of his pocket and drifted hundreds of feet down, bounced off a rough ridge and finally settled on the ocean floor. Hideo glimpsed a wall of rutted gray flesh moving against the current.
Godzilla is right underneath me! Hideo thought, panicking. He scrambled to the surface and struggled back onto his boat, ignoring the water that had collected during its flip. The radio spewed a cloud of smoke. Hideo tried it anyway, but got nothing, not even static. He reached into his pocket for his phone and realized it fell out. Same with his compass. With no sun or compass to guide him, Hideo was forced to choose a direction and go...and he prayed he'd find land soon.
Three hours went by and Hideo was half-frozen and nearly out of fuel. Then, far in the distance, he spotted a stretch of white sand. He gave a cry of joy and sped towards it at top speed, running his boat aground. Leaping out, he kissed the sand and choked on the grit. It was so nice to see dry land again!
After celebrating his discovery, Hideo stood up to take in his surroundings. He was standing fifty feet away from a large well-kept home surrounded by hibiscus bushes displaying a few pathetic red and white flowers. The house was two stories tall and painted white with a black roof. A gray satellite dish sat on one corner of the roof, nestled up against a tall, golden weather vane, which had a lightning bolt for a pointer. Vines clung to the walls and window frames of the first story. The windows all appeared to be boarded up. There was a black ivy-covered iron fence that separated the property from the beach. Its heavy gate was open. Hideo looked around before cautiously stepping through it. The yard was simple and zen-like with a sand garden in one corner and a sakura tree shaded the fish pond in another corner. A wide cement path lined by tiny bonsai trees led straight up to the front door. The whole place looked like another world entirely.
Warily, Hideo made his way forward, hyper conscious of the squishing noises his shoes made in the silence.
"H-Hello?" whispered Hideo as he walked up the path. He shivered so hard that he could barely ring the doorbell. No answer. He tried it five more times and then started to knock. "Hello? Please, I need help! Is anybody home? Hello!" Then panic took over again...what if he froze to death out here?! Miki would be all alone! He gave the door a good pounding and fell back when it creaked open by itself.
Against his best judgment, Hideo took off his shoes and soggy socks and wrung out his clothes the best he could. Then he poked his head inside the warm, dark home and could smell hints of pizza. "Hello?" he tried again. There was no reply. Hideo's eyes adjusted to the darkness to let him see the home's interior.
All of the floors appeared to be black and white marble. It was so shiny that Hideo could see his reflection. Windows stood on each side of the door and, as he'd suspected, they were boarded up. The kitchen was just to the left, almost directly inside the front door. Less than five feet away from the door was a dark western-style kitchen table surrounded by chairs. Yellow notebook papers with greasy fingerprints on the lower corners were strewn across the table like rose petals, half burying a laptop. Some of them contained poetry that had been scribbled over with a red pen.
Hideo's eye wandered onward. Decorative copper pots and pans hung on a rack above the stove. The cabinets had glass, no, crystal doors engraved with beautiful filigree patterns, but their beauty was marred by odd scratches around the handles. One lone plate sat in the gray holder beside the sink. A large Domino's pizza box had been crammed into the otherwise empty trash bin. Nearby was a microwave. A stainless steel refrigerator hummed in the corner. There was an open pantry full of nonperishable foods, spices and rice mixes. Next to the pantry, another doorway leading into what Hideo guessed was the garage. It was dark in there, but he thought he saw a condenser microphone with a black pop filter set up next to expensive-looking recording equipment.
"Is anybody home?" Hideo called, this time speaking louder than before. Silence answered him. He continued onward, the wrinkles on his face deepening in concern.
No door separated the kitchen from the house. The house immediately opened from the kitchen-foyer to the main living room. It was a huge room with a giant plasma TV and a Bose stereo system set up against the far wall. Speakers were mounted throughout the large room. Two CD racks had been set up next to the stereo and contained mostly classical music, but mixed within were classic rock like Whitesnake, Fleetwood Mac and Chicago. Wind caused the white vertical blinds by the TV to stir. They covered a large sliding glass door or window...probably a door leading to the back yard. A black leather recliner, two red bean bag chairs and a long black vinyl sofa had been placed in regular intervals near the television screen. Floor lamps lined the walls while recessed lights in the vaulted ceiling created an eerie white ambiance. On the right was an open fusama that revealed a bathroom. It was set beneath the sharp angle of a staircase leading to the next floor.
Suddenly, a tall grandfather clock chimed the hour, startling Hideo, and his head whipped towards the corner where the clock sat like a silent wooden sentinel. He swallowed and stepped forward on the cold, smooth flooring, his eyes coming to rest on a gold alto saxophone. The sax and its cleaning kit sat forgotten on the couch next to a violin, which rested atop a folded newspaper. The saxophone, like the cupboard, had some scratches around the keys and the reed looked like someone bit down on it a little too hard. Nestled between two couch cushions was a cordless phone. Hideo grabbed for it, then put it down. It would be rude to run up a long distance bill without asking his unwitting host first!
Hideo licked his lips, turning to look again at the staircase. He noticed a doorway beside an antique mahogany bookcase at the foot of the steps. Probably the basement.
"Hello?" he called again. His voice echoed in the acoustically perfect room. It was so quiet that he could hear the grandfather clock ticking away the seconds. He looked around because something seemed...off. It wasn't until his eyes studied the walls that he noticed the lack of mirrors and photographs. Not one picture to offer a hint as to whose house this might be. The only clues were the two musical instruments on the couch.
Hideo finally shrugged and settled down in the big recliner, listening to the ticking of the grandfather clock. The sound slowly lulled him to sleep. He dreamed of hot food and Miki's laughter.
Last edited by Cyndi; June 22nd, 2010 at 12:20 PM.
Re: Beauty and the Beast
June 22nd, 2010, 04:36 AM
Re: Beauty and the Beast
3. A Very Rude Awakening
Hideo's dreams faded to a light doze. Movement in the foyer half-woke him into a stupor. Relief flooded him, then quickly turned to foreboding when silence followed. He heard peculiar plop-click footsteps that didn't sound like bare feet or shoes. It almost reminded him of the raptor footsteps in Jurassic Park
. He heard his shoes hit the floor with a loud smack. Startled, he looked up to see a pair of lifeless white eyes with faint silver irises boring into his skull. The cold orbs were set under a charcoal gray reptilian brow. Strong, square jaws parted to bare huge teeth in a soundless snarl. Hideo's eyes widened at the smell of ozone on the creature's breath and he noticed the three rows of plates on its back were beginning to glow electric blue.
"Holy Heavens!" Hideo jerked back in the chair, his face contorting in terror. "G-Go--Godzilla! H-how...?" His brains were scrambled because Godzilla stood before him at only six feet tall--and last time Hideo checked the monster was over two hundred feet tall. It didn't make sense! "What--where-the-th...."
To his complete and utter surprise, Godzilla spoke
, "I live here. I think the question should be 'what are you
doing in my
"Yes, idiot, my
home." Godzilla's voice was a smooth, resonating baritone that did not fit his appearance at all. How he could form words with that mouth was a mystery. He jerked forward, grasping the arms of the chair, and growled in Hideo's wrinkled face. "I should kill you for trespassing on my property."
Hideo shrank back against the chair's backing. He squeezed his eyes shut and whimpered. "No! Wait! Please...please don't kill me! I have a daughter and I'm all she has! Just...just let me go and I-I'll find a pay phone and have someone pick me up! I won't tell anyone I saw you! I swear!"
"A daughter?" asked Godzilla.
"Yes...sh-she just turned eighteen!"
"Hm," Godzilla stood up straight and tapped a claw against the tip of his snout. His white eyes narrowed in thought. A daughter...a young adult one at that. Maybe she could break the spell Mothra cast fifty years ago. Yes, it was perfect. He crossed his arms, turning once again to look at Hideo. "Then let's make a deal. You bring your daughter here to stay and I'll let you live."
"Do you want to die, old man? I have a computer, I can look up your fishing company," Godzilla tapped the logo and nametag on Hideo's jacket with a claw, "find out where you live and decide to stomp your house and kill you both." His mouth curled into something resembling a smile. It did not look at all pleasant. "I'll give you three days to make up your mind. Then I'm going to come a-stomping your way. And please, don't try going to the police. They wouldn't believe you."
"How would I explain this to her? What excuse would I use?"
"Don't use one. Tell her the truth," he leaned forward, saying, "She has to come willingly."
"She'd never agree to this!" Hideo shouted.
"If she loves you enough, she will."
Poor Hideo was too shell shocked to find a decent retort. He couldn't stop staring at Godzilla standing before him with almost military perfect posture. It just looked wrong...he was supposed to be hunched forward and clumsy like an animal, not speaking and making human gestures like a...well like a man!
"What are you staring at?"
He gasped, "N-nothing!"
"Idiot." Godzilla's tail thumped twice on the ground. "Well, I guess you're stuck sleeping here tonight. Don't even think about trying to leave...I'll know it. Oh, by the way, there's one slice left in the pizza box. Better take it," he swept the saxophone and violin aside with his tail, clearing a space large enough to lie on. "You can have the couch. I'm going upstairs. I've been hit by artillery shells, I'm tired, I need a shower and I'm sick of looking at you. G'night."
Hideo blinked stupidly. Godzilla snorted and stomped towards the stairs, muttering angrily about how rude it was to stare. He was pretty sure the foolish human jumped when he slammed the door.
As soon as he closed the door, Godzilla flicked on the overhead light to reveal his king-sized bed. The black sheets where in disarray and the mattress had a hollow from his heavy body. He crossed the room to turn on a red lava lamp on his nightstand. Papers crackled under his toes. Much of his bedroom floor was covered in beer bottles and notebooks full of poems, songs and musical notations.
Godzilla shot a disdainful look at the closed door. The encounter with the old man left him more than a little rattled. It had been fifty years since he spoke face to face with anyone. He'd forgotten much of his social graces. Too late to take it back now. Godzilla walked past the closet and opened the bathroom door. His bathroom was white marble and contained no mirror--the main mirror was gone and only jagged fragments littered the edges of his medicine cabinet door. He went to the sink first, turned on the water and bent over it to brush his teeth.
I'm such a stupid fool,
Godzilla berated himself. He curled his lips at the electric toothbrush's annoying buzz and minty foam dripped from his jaws to splatter all over the white countertop. His daughter won't want anything to do with me. She's probably beautiful and I'm a freak. Nobody will ever love me when my face makes grown men whimper like babies. I'm screwed
He spat angrily and slammed his electric toothbrush back into its holder. Then, wiping the excess toothpaste off his chin and cheeks, he turned the shower on until steam poured around the shower curtain like mist. He gazed out the door at the barrel of his AK-47, which poked out from under the bed. While huge, his body could regenerate practically any damage...but at this size he healed at a human rate. Sometimes he seriously pondered putting that barrel in his mouth and pulling the trigger.
No, I have to try at least once,
Godzilla said to himself. He hissed, stepped into the shower and scraped the sand off his body with a scrub brush. But what if she's one of those preppy bubbleheads? God, I hope not. I can't stand those
. A deep sigh made his chest heave and sag. He banged his head gently against the tiled shower wall while the water splashed between his dorsal spines. She'll end up pitying me and that's even worse. Damn you, Mothra! You've ruined my life!
Godzilla swore the Fates were conspiring against him by sending Hideo to his house. With the human present, he couldn't even self-comfort by singing in the shower. He didn't dare risk revealing his voice to anyone. He shut off the water, dried himself with a vigorous all-body shake and staggered to his bed. Pulling the sheets over his head, he curled up and fell right to sleep.
Unlike Godzilla, Hideo didn't sleep well at all. He laid awake most of the night, watching the hours pass on the grandfather clock. At three in the morning, he caved in and ate the one slice of pizza Godzilla mentioned. It made him nauseous, so he spent the next hour throwing up in the bathroom. Then it was back to the couch.
Hints of daylight began to appear at five-thirty. At six, Hideo heard familiar plop-clicking noises as Godzilla descended the stairs. He shut his eyes, pretending to sleep. Godzilla seemed to stand by the edge of the couch for ages before he moved away. Pots rattled in the kitchen. Then the front door creaked open. It wasn't until Godzilla stepped outside the house that Hideo managed to doze off for another two hours.
The next time Hideo woke up, he smelled pancakes. He found a steaming plate of them on the kitchen table, which had been cleared of everything but the breakfast. They were already drizzled with maple syrup and butter. Silverware was folded neatly in a paper napkin. Next to the plate was a map with a circled island and a note that said:
'Your boat has been refueled. I circled the island you're on so you can find your way home.
Eat and get out.'
Hideo's stomach turned over with hunger. It was an odd sensation to be both nauseous and hungry at the same time. His gaze wandered to a mug of fresh-brewed coffee and he quickly downed it. The caffeine and warmth chased the stupor away and he ate his breakfast as fast as humanly possible. Best pancakes he ever tasted. Hideo almost laughed when he remembered who cooked them. The happy mood quickly left him once he cast off from shore. How could he go home and tell his only daughter about this? What did a beast like Godzilla want with a young girl? A sacrifice? Sex? A slave? The scenarios grew more horrible as he sailed.
The whole way home, Hideo silently pondered taking Miki and moving out. But even that was futile. Godzilla would find him. He was in such a daze that he didn't notice the coast guard pulling up.
It took a full day for Hideo to recover and tell Miki everything that happened. While he spoke, Miki's face morphed from surprise, horror, anger, shock and finally confusion. She watched how glistening tears rolled down between the wrinkles in Hideo's aged face.
"...and that's what happened," he finished. They were talking over a hearty dinner of fish, vegetables and bread.
She didn't know what to say at first. Godzilla, able to talk like a person and living in a house? And wanting her to come live with him? The story sounded utterly absurd! She would have laughed in her father's face if he hadn't burst into sobbing halfway through telling her about it.
"Daddy..." Miki whispered, scooting around the low wooden table to lay her head on his shoulder. "We could move out. Just drop everything and go to another country."
"No," said Hideo with a shake of his head, "He'll find us. We're both as good as dead!" He dropped his chopsticks and groaned. "Oh, Miki, I'm so sorry I caused this! I'll just go back and explain that you can't come and see if--"
"No, no, no..." Miki replied. "You have a dock to run and a house to take care of."
"But, Miki! Your career--"
"Can wait." She cut him off. "I don't want you to die because of me. Maybe..." she tried to find something positive, but such was hard with the cold dread forming in the pit of her stomach. This wasn't what she had in mind when it came to moving out and managing on her own. "...maybe it won't be so bad. I can do my thing, he'll do his and we'll ignore each other."
Hideo's eyes flared like embers, "What if he doesn't? What if he wants you for some kind of sick sex thing? Or makes you into a slave? Who knows what he'll do if you make him angry!"
"We're as good as dead if I don't go!" She snapped, then quickly apologized for getting sassy. "Dad... daddy... I don't like this any more than you do, but I love you and I don't want you to get hurt. End of discussion."
"Dad, you said yourself that I need to start making my own decisions in life. This is one of those." Miki stood up and left the kitchen after that. It wasn't until she entered her bedroom and started packing that the choking tears made their escape. Her favorite CD's, her modeling portfolio, personal photos and some books were among the belongings she wanted to take along. She was halfway through her closet when her laptop beeped. Miki sat down on her bed. Her friend, perfectsomeone35411, was hailing her.
perfectsomeone35411: hi miki
MikiMew: hi.....messed up right now, can't talk long.
perfectsomeone35411: what's wrong?
MikiMew: just a bad situation and i have to leave home tomorrow. really don't want to talk about it.
perfectsomeone35411: oh...that sucks. is it legal issues?
MikiMew: sorta...it's really complicated. ugh. x_x;
u in trouble?
MikiMew: i don't know, but i really really reeeeeeeeally don't wanna talk about it
perfectsomeone35411: ok will u still be able 2 talk?
MikiMew: i'm taking my laptop with me. dunno if i'll have net access though. if you stop seeing me online then that's why.
perfectsomeone35411: *hugs* i'm sorry
MikiMew: you're really sweet ps. if i don't see you again, thanx for being so nice.
perfectsomeone35411: i'll miss u if u can't come back.
perfectsomeone35411: ur a darling & talking 2 u always makes me smile
MikiMew: aw same here. if i still have net access, i'll poke you the next time i can get on. but i don't want to make promises i might break
perfectsomeone35411: its ok miki...i understand if u can't make it back. i'll still miss u tons.
Tears flooded down Miki's cheeks and she hugged herself.
MikiMew: *hugs you* thanx...gtg.
perfectsomeone35411: bye, miki. godspeed.
She logged off, shut the laptop down and began to cry again. Her weeping continued while she packed the last of her things into a second suitcase.
Last edited by Cyndi; June 22nd, 2010 at 12:21 PM.
Re: Beauty and the Beast
June 22nd, 2010, 04:36 AM
Re: Beauty and the Beast
4. Beauty Meets the Beast
Godzilla stood in the dim soundproof booth of his garage recording studio. Both of his hands rested on the thick headphones to hold them over his stubby ears. The soft, jazzy piano music filtering through the headphones made him sway a little. He liked to move when he sang. The microphone and pop filter Hideo glimpsed earlier were clipped to a stand that brought the Miki exactly level with Godzilla's nose. Placing it there, as opposed to in front of his mouth, let the microphone capture the richest tones in his voice.
At that moment he was coming to the climax of his song, which was called February Song
. Hitting "climax notes" in music was the best feeling in the world. Something akin to scratching an itch after hours of standing still.
"Sometimes it's hard to find my ground, 'cause I keep on falling..."
he squeezed his eyes shut, leaning into a crescendo and crooning just ahead of the beat as the piano and drums climbed like steps, "...as I try-- to-- get-- away-- from-- this-- CRA--ZY WORLD!"
and after that the song sailed over the climax and slowly drifted back into itself. Godzilla went from singing triple forte to just mezzo forte, lightening his tone until the song ended in a whisper. He waited a moment, then played his own performance back to make sure he was in tune. The song was good. Godzilla nodded to himself. It bothered him slightly that he hadn't had any real inspiration for a long time. He was pulling out old poetry he penned decades ago. His albums were all starting to sound the same to him. He wanted something new, fresh and real
. He wanted to feel
what he sang.
Godzilla sighed and started the next track, but he just couldn't focus. Hideo was due to arrive with his daughter at any moment. The wait proved more nerve wracking than the last three seconds before a performance. This might be his only chance to break this spell. He didn't want to blow it.
Hideo's fishing boat slashed across the water like a knife through butter. The clouds were parting and golden sunlight cast glittering sparkles over the sapphire waves. Miki watched the water scintillate while the wind blew her curly bangs against her forehead. She'd dressed for the cold--a light blue turtleneck, white jeans and a pair of heavy boots under her black winter jacket. Since the cold made her skin blotchy, she had also put on a touch of foundation, blush and a sheer rose petal-pink lipstick. She wanted to add eye shadow too, but she was never very good at applying it. Usually, she had makeup artists to do that.
But not anymore
. Miki thought to herself.
Occasionally the boat would send up a salty mist that dampened her brow with water droplets. Neither her nor Hideo said much during the trip, so she finally spoke up.
"Maybe I'll just focus on something good about him," said Miki. She pushed herself up off the railing and poked one of her brown leather suitcases. "It's like talking with a really crippled up person in a wheelchair, just...ignore the chair and focus on them."
Hideo wrinkled his nose. "This is nothing like a person in a wheelchair, Miki. Godzilla is--he's hideous! You can't ignore that when all you can see is those huge teeth."
She shrugged her small shoulders and reached up to tighten her ponytail. Anxiety about what might befall her gnawed constantly at her consciousness. Laughing seemed to be the only way to make it bearable, so she said in a joking tone, "Maybe he'll fatten me up before he eats me."
"That isn't funny!" said her father in a stern tone. Up ahead, the island and Godzilla's home came into view. "I wish we didn't have to do this. I want to turn around and leave."
"Maybe it won't be so bad. We can still email each other or call. I'm sure he'd let me call you," whispered Miki, her eyes now drawn to the lavish home set far away from the rest of Odo island's civilization. The black and white estate against the cloud-streaked blue sky looked like it came off a post card. She even spotted a lighthouse up in the hills behind the huge house.
Fifteen minutes later, Hideo tied his boat to a rock and helped Miki unload her suitcases. They walked silently through the vine encrusted gate. Miki glanced around at the yard, smiling at the pretty sakura tree. She followed Hideo up to the front door. A note had been taped above the doorknob:
I fixed you both dinner. It's a long boat ride and you must be hungry. If I don't answer the doorbell, just come in and start eating.'
Miki and Hideo glanced at each other. Then Miki rang the doorbell. She waited, then rang it again and still got no reply. Her eyes moved to her father. "I guess we should just go in." Miki shivered slightly despite being bundled up. "It's too cold to wait around out here."
Nodding, Hideo pushed the door open and they both shed their boots and entered, Miki dragging her suitcases on their little rollers. Hideo noticed a coat rack placed near the door. They removed their winter gear. Scents of hot food immediately made their mouths water. The table was set for three, but only two plates had been dished up. The meal was calamari with steamed asparagus and rice bowls on the side. Both western silverware and chopsticks were provided. Wineglasses of gold sparkling cider shone eerily under the overhead lights.
Miki blushed when her stomach protested its emptiness. She sat down in the nearest chair and picked up a fork. "I guess we should dig in."
Hideo picked up the rice bowl in one hand and the chopsticks in another. He muttered a small blessing and started to eat. Miki began eating when he did. The food was rich, juicy and prepared to utter perfection. The first morsel tasted just as wonderful as the last. Miki ate everything, but Hideo just picked nervously at his food. Sympathizing with him, Miki rested her hand on his arm and gave it a gentle, reassuring squeeze.
Suddenly, the door beside the pantry creaked open. A pair of lifeless white eyes and a snout full of gleaming teeth shone in the darkness before Godzilla fully emerged into the kitchen. He closed the door behind him with a bang. His pitted gray face frightened Miki. But, remembering what she'd said on the way to the house, she swallowed her fear. Ignore his ugly face and huge teeth
. She pushed away from the table and bowed politely. "Hello, Godzilla. I'm Miki Saegusa, Hideo's daughter."
Godzilla appeared a bit startled, though Miki didn't know why. Maybe he was surprised that she didn't scream at the sight of him. He blinked a few times and returned the polite bow. "Good evening," he said smoothly, trying his hardest not
to frighten his guests. "Was my cooking to your liking?"
His politeness surprised Miki a bit. And his voice...it was so smooth, soft and light, nothing at all like she expected to hear. The fact that he spoke at all was amazing. Not wanting to stare, she turned her attention to the cider in her glass. "It was great! Thank you. I'm so full." Then she nudged Hideo until he mumbled a thank you of his own.
"Good. Then...it's time for you two to say goodbye."
A rush of grief hit Miki like a wave. She bit her lip and turned to hug her father, whose eyes also welled over. "I'm doing this because I love you, daddy. Oh...don't cry... Come on now, w-we shouldn't keep him waiting. I'll try to call you."
Hideo didn't want to move. He wanted to stay with Miki. Then he wanted to grab her arm and run out the door without ever looking back. He cupped her cheek in his rough, wrinkled hand and gazed straight into her shining eyes. "You are the bravest woman I have ever seen."
Miki sobbed and grasped his wrist. "I learned that from you."
"Can we hurry this up?" Godzilla grumbled, moving to the door and opening it. Cold air blasted into the warm house. "There's another storm on the way. You don't want to be caught short again."
Miki glared over her shoulder at Godzilla. Turning back to Hideo, she coaxed him to his feet and hugged him tightly. Then she helped him into his winter gear, biting back tears when he kissed her forehead. She barely choked out a soft, "Bye, dad. Be careful out there," before Godzilla pushed him out the door and closed it. Upset, Miki cried out, "I may never see him again! You didn't have to rush us like that!" Then she began to cry while Godzilla stared down at the top of her head.
"I...uh...guess I'll take your things up to your room," said Godzilla. He sounded uncomfortable about the whole situation.
"My room? But I thought that--"
He curled his lip. "What? You want the lumpy couch?" When Miki shook her head, he went on, "then follow me upstairs."
With that, he picked her bags up as if they weighed nothing and started towards the stairs. He forgot about his tail though. When he turned, it swept her feet out from under her. Miki fell on her butt and gave a shout.
"Oh, damn! I'm so sorry!" Godzilla dropped the suitcases to run back and help her. One suitcase sprang open to spill multicolored bras and panties on the floor. Miki's face turned bright
red. Godzilla, mortified, tried to sweep the underwear up with his tail, but only succeeded in getting them stuck to his ridged skin. He tried to shake the panties off without actually using his hands. Now it was Godzilla's turn to look embarrassed. He clapped a hand over his face and shook his head. Miki didn't know whether to laugh or cry, but since people tend to laugh the hardest when they aren't supposed to, she started to giggle. She covered it up by pretending to cry harder.
Godzilla berated himself. Now you've gone and humiliated the poor girl. Nice job! That will make her like you! Next, you should go through her diary because you're such a winner. Ugh!
Miki rubbed her backside and reached out to carefully lift the underwear off Godzilla's tail. She stuffed everything back into the suitcase.
"I am so
sorry about that. Are you okay?" Godzilla hurried over to pick her luggage up and resumed his trek to the stairs.
"I'm not hurt. I've done worse while rollerblading." She wiped tears from her cheeks, waiting for Godzilla to clear the stairs before following.
They stopped at the second door. Godzilla nudged it open with his shoulder and flicked on the overhead light. A beautiful double bay window looked out towards the north, giving a view of the lighthouse Miki saw while offshore. The tops of the windows were stained glass in a pink rose design. This motif repeated itself on the Tiffany fixture of a small sconce lamp with a pull chain positioned near the bed. Miki's eyes wandered to the queen sized bed set up diagonally in the far corner. The sheets were soft purple and reminded her of her bed at home. A small recessed shelf in the wall housed a pewter dragon's claws wrapped around a sphere. Inside the sphere was a round clock face. There didn't seem to be a closet, but a large, antique-looking oak wardrobe stood just to the right of the door. Next to it was a huge step tansu that reached almost to the ceiling, and each step was decorated with pink silk roses, a pewter carousel, a tiny jade zen step-fountain and crystal figurines. The corner opposite to the bed held a desk with an adjoining bookshelf. Hanging on the wall between the desk and tansu was a beautiful hand-carved Chinese dragon with hooks to hold hats. It was set above an expensive entertainment center--a stereo and a TV with a built-in DVD combo. An oriental rug that matched the bedspread broke up the monotony of the marble floor. It was a lovely room--a bit cold looking, but the pinks and browns warmed it up nicely.
"It's...it's nice." Miki said. The situation felt suddenly awkward and she didn't know what else to say.
"Thanks. The bathroom is just around the corner. It has a bathtub and a shower." Godzilla scooted past her and left her suitcases in the middle of the floor. "I um--the remote on the desk there works both the TV and the stereo. You can get cable in here. Now...I'll leave you alone now. You can have anything in the fridge and go anywhere you want in this house...except for the garage. It's the door I came from earlier."
"What's in the garage?"
"Nothing!" he snapped, "Just don't go in there."
Miki thought to herself. She wanted to giggle at how utterly absurd Godzilla looked standing in the middle of this lavish bedroom. He might have fit in as a statue, but not as a living thing. "Hey, I have a question."
Godzilla paused with his hand on the door handle. His featureless eyes gave her the creeps--she couldn't tell if he was looking at her face or her chest! It wasn't until he tilted his head a little that she saw outlines of his pale silver irises. He was looking into her eyes.
"When you saw me...you looked kind of surprised."
"Oh, that," he chewed on his bottom lip a bit. "I--saw your picture in an ad for jeans once. Are you a model or something?"
She blushed and averted her eyes. The thought that Godzilla ogled her picture in a catalogue made her uncomfortable. "I hope to be, someday."
"I see. Well, g'night."
"Good ni--" but the door had already closed. The back of it was actually a full-length mirror. Miki sighed just as rain pattered against the window, signaling the approach of another nasty winter storm. She began the long process of unpacking her belongings and making the room feel more like home. The first thing to go up was a gorgeously embroidered wall hanging depicting the goddess, Mothra, that her father bought years ago. It seemed perfect on the wall by her bed where she could see it at night. She put her favorite white kitten plushie on the soft purple bedspread. Next came her clothes. The wardrobe had more room than her old closet. It sported beautiful wooden hangers that were better for her outfits than the old wire ones. On the bottom were spaces for shoes. Her pajamas, underwear, makeup, toothbrush and things for her hair went into the tansu, which could double as a dresser. Finally, Miki unpacked her laptop. Then came her modeling portfolio, her Discman, CDs, a few DVDs and personal photographs. She placed them on the desk. She then put her new G album into the stereo and turned it on. The stereo gave such a pure sound that she swore this wonderful baritone was standing right there in the room with her.
"I can't understand it...the search for an answer is met with a darker day..."
G's voice resonated around the walls.
"Let's see if I can get online." Miki said to herself. She booted up the laptop and let it search for a net connection while she put her socks away. Before she had even closed the drawer, she heard a trilling sound.
Her night brightened with that simple line of green text. She ran over to reply.
MikiMew: YES! i have net here! oh i'm so happy to see you ps! *hughughughugs*
perfectsomeone35411: its so good 2 see u can still get on
perfectsomeone35411: i missed our afternoon chat a lot......
MikiMew: me too
perfectsomeone35411: how is the new place?
perfectsomeone35411: do u like it?
MikiMew: it's a huge place. i haven't seen much yet. the guy i'm staying with is really.....unusual.
perfectsomeone35411: how so??
MikiMew: well.....he isn't very attractive to start. but he was polite and kinda awkward.
MikiMew: i think he and i are just gonna stay out of each others way for awhile
perfectsomeone35411: so he's butt ugly? does he have over 9000 warts on his face? is he as nasty looking as godzilla?
MikiMew: ROFL XD OMGGGGGGG ROFL ROFL ROFL *dies* you could say that!
The laughter left Miki grasping her sides in attempt to stay silent. If only perfectsomeone35411 knew just how right he was! She leaned up just in time to see him responding to her last message.
perfectsomeone35411: lmao wow he must be sooooo horsefaced
perfectsomeone35411: hey maybe he isnt a terrible guy
perfectsomeone35411: used 2 know an old man who looked like a twisted old tree. every1 thought he ate kids. turns out he was blind & tied brooms for a living & told funny stories about how he tripped over things.
Miki leaned back with a smile, reading her online friend's words. His presence was a comforting familiarity in the otherwise dismal circumstances. Combined with the softness of G's voice, she swore she could close her eyes and pretend she was at home.
MikiMew: i guess i need to get to know him first. but it's hard because he doesn't seem very talkative.
MikiMew: and it's hard not to stare. he looks so weird. i mean it's a guy i've seen around and just never up close, you know?
MikiMew: man i'm tired. i think i could sleep for a week or two.
perfectsomeone35411: ur so funny
MikiMew: you too. ugh i gtg, i need sleep.
perfectsomeone35411: ok, we can chat 2morrow if ur on
MikiMew: works for me. night ps!
perfectsomeone35411: c u l8er.
Miki sighed as she logged off AIM. She changed into a pair of pink Hello Kitty pajamas, shut off the light and climbed into bed. The fluffy sheets smelled freshly washed and the mattress felt so soft, like lying on a cloud. Still, it was just a harsh reminder that this was not her bedroom at home.
Miki cried herself to sleep.
Downstairs, Godzilla sat at his kitchen table, illuminated by the faint glow of his laptop screen. He'd been trying to write another song and failing miserably. His mind was too wrapped around the events of the day.
I'm out of my freaking mind
. Godzilla thought to himself. He held his head in his hands, Out of all the girls in the world, his daughter happens to be her! She's gorgeous and I'm...oh, God, she must hate me right now...I've taken her away from the world she knows and thrust her into this mess! What the hell was I thinking?! Oh, God, I hope I can win her over or I am royally screwed
Last edited by Cyndi; June 22nd, 2010 at 12:21 PM.
Re: Beauty and the Beast
June 22nd, 2010, 04:37 AM
Re: Beauty and the Beast
5. Forbidden Doors
The next week was the most boring of Miki's life. Godzilla only appeared at dinnertime and they spoke very little, so Miki mostly spent the days puttering about the house. She explored the other four rooms around the corner from her bedroom. The first door was the bathroom--decorated in a rose motif like on her bedroom window. Next to it, she discovered a closet full of old clothes next, mostly vintage nineteen-fifties tuxedoes. When she went to touch one, a very old, faded black and white photograph fell out of the pocket. Miki picked it up and squinted. The photo showed a rather dashing young man with dark eyes and wavy hair framing his face. His face took her breath away. She'd never seen such a beautiful human being before.
Shrugging, Miki pocketed the photo and walked across the hall to discover a large, windowless home office. It only contained the bare minimum--a desk, a big chair, a telephone, a desktop PC, writing utensils and file cabinets. Godzilla's color scheme for this room seemed to be shades of forest green.
Miki moved on. The last room was a library filled floor to ceiling with books in practically every genre. Its seventies-style orange shag rug felt nice under her toes. One corner had a little reading lamp on the floor, and underneath lay a bookmarked copy of The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley.
Nice to know he's well-read. Miki thought as she left the library and descended the stairs with one hand on the iron banister. A doorway at the foot of the steps was open, revealing another staircase. Its only illumination came from a naked light bulb on the ceiling. Faint piano music filtered gently under the floor. Curious, Miki tip-toed into a very short hallway and down a long flight of wooden steps. The sounds came from behind a plain metal door. She knocked politely. The music abruptly stopped and Godzilla pulled the door open a few moments later. He took up almost the entire doorway and the overhead light made ugly shadows cross his gray face.
"What?" he asked, blinking down at her.
"Oh!" Miki gasped, startled. "I'm sorry...I was just wondering where that music was coming from."
Godzilla made a soft grunting-growling sound. "I'm dinking around on the piano. Does it bother you?"
Miki's day was suddenly a lot more interesting.
At that, Godzilla's eyelids fluttered and Miki got the impression that he'd just rolled his eyes at her. He stepped from the doorway to reveal a gigantic room paneled entirely in wood that made it acoustically perfect. Miki cautiously made her way past Godzilla and looked to the right. She gasped. The room was filled with musical instruments. More than she could count, and some of which she'd never seen before. Here and there were microphones and equipment to record the various instruments.
Miki glanced sideways at Godzilla's clawed hands. They looked so big and clumsy. How did he play the piano with those claws in the way?
"What kind of music do you do?"
He shrugged and walked back to the huge grand piano in the corner. "Classical, mostly. I've dipped in jazz and soft rock on occasion as well."
"Ooh! Classical piano! I've always loved Beethoven's Für Elise."
Godzilla's lips twitched into a smile. He sat down, rested his fingers lightly on the keys and began to play Für Elise. He did it perfectly and easily, and the notes flowed around the room like a delicious scent. It was an odd sight to see this seemingly horrible beast play the piano. Miki walked closer to watch his hands move smoothly about the keyboard, his fingers always finding the right keys by touch alone. His eyes were closed and he seemed to be off in a completely different world. Miki found that Godzilla didn't look at all frightening while he played the piano.
The song came to a gentle end and Miki rewarded Godzilla with soft applause. He took a little mock bow and said, "Name an instrument and I'll pick it up and play it. I can play them all...except for the flutes, the trumpet family and double-reeds for obvious reasons," he pointed to his snout, looking a little embarrassed.
"I understand," Miki smiled. She felt slightly uncomfortable, but went ahead and let her eyes wander around the dimly lit room. "How about the violin?"
"Okay, but this time I get to pick the song," said Godzilla as he heaved himself up off the piano bench. There were no words he could say to express how wonderful it felt to perform for someone again, even if it wasn't singing. He just couldn't bring himself to reveal his voice to Miki. Clearing his throat, he picked up the violin, tuning it briefly before setting it against his shoulder. Miki thought way he positioned the violin made it look very awkward. He said, "You might recognize this if you like Shakespeare."
Then he set the bow on the strings, bent slightly forward and began to play. Softly down, then gently up...and then he slid smoothly into a haunting melody. Again, Miki was transfixed by his hands. His fingers moved fluidly against the violin's neck and he slid the bow delicately over the strings. His eyes were closed, but his forehead and the corners of his closed mouth showed quiet tension. And somehow he transformed the violin from a piece of wood to a thing of utter beauty. He was a painter for the ear. With his bow as the brush, the violin his palette and the silence his canvas, he created a stunning auditory masterpiece. The song pleaded to her with notes that fell together like autumn leaves, mourned the loss of two tragic lovers and then swelled into a brightening dawn.
He was playing the theme from the 1968 version of Romeo and Juliet.
Miki never wept at the sound of music before. She did right then.
Godzilla finished the song and opened his eyes. He saw tears streaming down Miki's cheeks. "Miki? Are you okay?"
She wiped at her cheeks, embarrassed. "I'm fine. It's just...I've never heard that song done on one violin before. That was amazing!"
"Thank you," said Godzilla. He set the violin and bow back on the stand next to a cello. Then he glanced at a clock mounted on the wall. "Wow, it's dinner time already. Where did the day go? Heh...c'mon, I'm hungry."
"What are we having?"
He replied from stairs, "Chicken!"
At dinner, they had a rather animated conversation about music and both agreed that classical was a genre that needed to come back into the mainstream. Miki was so busy talking that when she mentioned G was her favorite singer of all time, she didn't notice that Godzilla nearly choked on a chicken bone. Their chatter continued while they did the dishes. They debated, laughed, threw suds on each other and generally had a great time. It wasn't until Miki got back to her room that she realized how normal it all felt. She'd entirely forgotten about Godzilla's frightening appearance.
It's funny... Miki thought as she waited for perfectsomeone35411 to come online, he doesn't seem like a terrible guy at all. Just scary looking. Is this really the same Godzilla that destroys cities?
Then perfectsomeone35411 came online and Miki hurried to tell him about her day.
It was after midnight when Miki woke up to gnawing hunger pangs. Sometimes her stomach begged for a midnight snack. Miki threw on a white cotton yukata, slid her door open and tip toed past Godzilla's room--only to discover the front door wide open. He was off pillaging Japan for nuclear materials. Cold ocean air blasted through the deep blue rectangle of the door. Occasionally, flashes of light shone from the moon glinting off distant waves. Miki made a face at the chilly air and hurried downstairs to the fridge. Godzilla's refrigerator had practically everything from Beluga caviar to carrot sticks. She decided to make a tuna sandwich and washed it down with some milk.
Miki turned and blinked. The door to the garage was standing ajar. She moved to close it, but froze...Godzilla would think she looked in the room if she shut the door.
Daddy always did say I'm too curious for my own good, Miki scoffed to herself. Against her own better judgment, she felt for a light switch and turned it on. The lights came on with a loud click, revealing Godzilla's recording studio in all its splendor. A CD rom was open, baring a gold tinted compact disc that glinted in the neon lights. It was labeled "DEMO" in red ink. Miki stepped into the booth, pushed the CD into the console and picked up a pair of headphones to listen.
The first thing she heard was a jazzy piano. A soft, understated guitar joined in.
Then G's voice came out.
"Where is that old friend gone?
Lost in a February song.
Tell him it won't be long
'till he opens his eyes...
...opens his eyes..."
Miki put her hands on the headphones and closed her eyes, listening to G's, no, Godzilla's beautiful spun-silk vocals. She couldn't believe it. She never would have guessed!
Suddenly, huge hands grabbed the back of Miki's robe and jerked her upright. The headphones were knocked off her head. She found herself spun around and staring into narrowed white eyes. "G-Godzilla!"
"I told you not to come in here! How much did you hear?"
"Th-the door was open...I didn't mean anything by coming in here! I-I was c-curious!" Choking, she whispered, "G-Godzi-"
"HOW MUCH DID YOU HEAR?!"
"I-I..." Miki sobbed, trying ineffectively to break his grip, "I h-heard you sing...just a little bit...b-but I heard you..."
Godzilla bellowed at the top of his lungs. His roar turned the small booth into a clamoring wall of cacophony. He shoved Miki towards the door and his dorsal spines began to crackle. Demonic shadows crossed his hideous face. He bore his huge, sharp teeth and screamed, "GET OUT!"
Terrified, Miki sprinted out of the garage and towards the stairs. "Deal or no deal," she sobbed, "I can't stay with you!" She slammed her bedroom door and immediately started throwing things into a suitcase.
Godzilla stood in the recording studio with a hand over his face. He'd just blown his chances with Miki...all thanks to his temper. He hurried towards the stairs to apologize. "Miki?" he called, "Miki! Wait, I'm sorry!"
But Miki didn't hear him because she was so busy packing her essentials, anything that fit in her smaller suitcase. Then she threw the door open to Godzilla's face on the other side. "AAH! Get away!" Miki pushed her suitcase into his chest. Godzilla had no choice but to step back.
"Miki! Wait! Don't leave! I-I'm sorry!" he protested, holding his hands up.
"Miki-" Godzilla grew even more frantic. "I didn't mean it! I lost my temper!"
"Exactly! Next time, you might kill me!" Miki gave him another shove with the luggage bag.
"Come on! Radiation makes me go crazy when I eat it!" he placed himself again in Miki's path. "Miki..."
"Get out of my way!" Miki yelled, thrusting her suitcase into Godzilla's chest as hard as she could. His arms suddenly flailed in the air. She heard him shout something like "help!" or "stop!" which was abruptly followed by the sickening sound of a body crashing down the stairs. The staircase was steep and long, and Godzilla tumbled head over heels for several seconds before landing in a heap at the bottom. The back of his head broke the basement doorknob off with a horrid crunch. He'd come to rest in such a contorted position that Miki wasn't sure if he was still alive.
Miki grabbed her suitcase and waited. Godzilla didn't move. Crimson blood began to collect along the wall behind his head and dribble towards the huge sofa. Upon seeing this, Miki dropped the suitcase and covered her mouth with both hands. Oh, God! What if I killed him?! Tears sprang from her eyes and she rushed down the stairs to Godzilla's side. He was still breathing.
Putting her head in her hands, Miki let out another sob. She scrambled into the kitchen for paper towels, dumped ice cubes into a baggie and grabbed a bottle of hydrogen peroxide. Then she scurried back and straightened his body out a bit. Without thinking, she put Godzilla's head in her lap to examine the wound she inflicted. Not as bad as she thought...but it bled like a stuck pig and looked like someone shoved a golf ball under his skin. Miki wiped up as much of the blood as she could, then poured on the peroxide. The gash sizzled and turned white.
The pain seemed to rouse Godzilla. He moaned. Miki grabbed his shoulders, "Don't move. You're hurt."
"I feel like I fell down the stairs," he mumbled.
She asked, "What's the last thing you remember?"
"You pushing me."
Miki's face flushed. "C'mon, hold this." She put the bagged ice against his head and placed his hand over it. "Now we're going to get up and walk to the couch." He nodded, she slipped his free arm over her shoulders and helped him up. They hobbled together to the couch.
Godzilla flopped down on his back and Miki, exhausted, toppled across his chest. She sat up right away, blushing a little as she pulled him into a sitting position. Godzilla was still too groggy for Miki's liking, so she patted his cheeks until his eyes locked on hers.
"What?" she blinked.
"I can't believe you pushed me down the stairs."
Miki reached around to press the ice pack against his head. "I can't believe I pushed you down the stairs. Oh, Godzilla, I'm so sorry! I didn't mean to--"
"I deserved it." He stiffened in pain when she hit a tender spot. "I made a huge dick of myself back there."
"I was a jerk for invading your privacy." She stroked his ridged forehead with her thumb, "Let's just call it even, okay?"
"Sure," he replied. His eyes began to look a little more alert.
"By the way," Miki went on, taking her hand off his forehead, "you have an amazing singing voice."
Godzilla's mouth slowly uncurled into a toothy grin. "Thanks."
Far away in Tokyo, Hideo and a few others emerged from an underground Godzilla shelter. Godzilla's rampage on the city had been short, abrupt and totally unexpected. Worse, he seemed to dodge the military's new armor piercing missiles like he'd been warned. Hideo knew exactly why, too, but the generals just laughed at him when he told them that Godzilla had human-like intelligence.
Oh, Miki...and you have to live with that horrible thing! Hideo thought as he walked quietly along the unusually empty street. It was dark and nearly silent, the only sounds being cars passing on the road. Most of the damage was over a mile away. Too close for his liking. I can't imagine what Godzilla must be like in his own home. You're probably miserable, Miki...miserable, alone and afraid...
The light of a passing car caught Hideo's attention. He reached up to wave at the dusty black Mitsubishi. Wagura pulled over and shoved his passenger door open, "Hey, Hideo! Need a lift?"
"Thanks," he climbed in and buckled his seat belt with dirty, trembling hands. Wagura offered him a rag that he used to wipe the grime off his fingers. "There's something about Godzilla that you should know."
"Another one of your crazy stories? Okay." Wagura pulled back onto the road, grinning, "I'm all ears."
Later, Hideo managed to contact a general in charge of the attack on Godzilla. He tried to tell him the same story he told Wagura. The general laughed him out of the building.
Last edited by Cyndi; June 22nd, 2010 at 12:22 PM.
Re: Beauty and the Beast
June 22nd, 2010, 04:38 AM
Re: Beauty and the Beast
6. Warming Up
Three months slowly passed. Miki began to call her father once a day to let him know she was okay. Godzilla's only condition was that Miki kept his identity as G a secret, which she did happily. She also puzzled about the handsome young lad in the photograph she found, though she never asked Godzilla about it.
Having Miki discover his secret turned out to be the best thing that ever happened to Godzilla. He felt free to sing anywhere he wanted. In the shower, while cooking, while washing the dishes...and occasionally for no reason at all. Sometimes he brought a random instrument up from the basement and sang while playing it. Miki thought he looked most amusing when he played the saxophone, but he could play circles around Kenny G.
And Godzilla began to experience something he hadn't in years--desire. It hit him one evening when he passed the upstairs bathroom. The door had been cracked to let out the excess steam. Miki was still in there, fresh from a shower, wrapped in a white towel and busily drying her hair. Godzilla's eyes were riveted to her toned legs and the perfect lines her calves drew to the backs of her knees. The towel did not hide her full hips or the gentle curve of her buttocks. Then she turned sideways, the blow dryer still going at full blast, and the towel just barely clung to her perky breasts. She wasn't full-figured, but she wasn't a rail either.
Godzilla caught himself wishing she'd drop the towel. He felt like someone lit a fire in the pit of his stomach. Then Miki shut off the hair dryer. This sudden silence jerked Godzilla back to reality. If Miki caught him staring, she'd think he was a pervert! He gasped and hurried downstairs. Unfortunately, his loud, slapping footsteps gave him away.
"Geez, it sounds like a herd of tap dancers going by!" Miki called. "What's going on?"
"I thought I heard the downstairs phone!" Godzilla replied lamely, "False alarm, I guess."
She giggled, "You have a phone in your office!"
Defeated, Godzilla trudged back upstairs to find Miki leaning out the door. He sighed, "That's my business phone. It's on a separate line."
"Oh. Well maybe you should get a land line installed up here." She said, then vanished again, trailing the smell of peaches. The door closed and Godzilla scurried into his room. He didn't dare come back out until after Miki went downstairs.
His battle with his hormones got worse when spring came around. He gave Miki money to go shopping for clothing more appropriate to the warming weather. She traded her turtlenecks for T-shirts, tank tops, halter tops, cute vests and the occasional cardigan sweater. The long pants disappeared in favor of boot-cut jeans, short skirts and very short shorts. Her outfits were always tasteful, but revealed just enough to make Godzilla sneak peeks when she wasn't looking. She never seemed aware of this...and if she was she never complained.
Miki also began to go on photoshoots. It wasn't after she did her clothes shopping that she mentioned going on a few go-sees. Some new jeans company liked her and asked her to model their petite low-rise jeans in next season's catalogue. She even brought out a few glossies from the shoot. They were all wonderful pictures, but one in particular captured his attention. The setting was a bedroom with a huge open window and the moon shining in the background. Miki stood at a three-fourths angle and her head was turned to the window. She looked enraptured by the moon. She was also topless, her hands grasping her own shoulders in a way that covered her chest, and her dark shoulder blade length hair gleamed against her skin. Our jeans are so good that nothing should come between them, said the slogan at the top.
Godzilla found himself wishing he could stand behind her and touch her bare skin. He wanted to run his fingers down to the line of her pants and--
He blinked over at Miki. "Huh? Sorry?"
She giggled. "Airhead. Which one do you like best?"
"Oh..." Godzilla pointed to the topless one. His mind continued to spiral out of control. "I think I like this one the bre-- er...the best."
Miki tilted her head. "You don't think it's trashy? My dad always thinks too much skin is trashy."
He chuckled, straightening his posture. "That's because he's your father. I think these are nice pictures, Miki."
"Thanks." Her cheeks flushed a lovely shade of pink. "I should go put it in my portfolio before it gets covered in fingerprints. Um, Godzilla? I kinda need it back..."
"Huh? Oh! Right, here." Godzilla laughed self-consciously as he slid the glossy towards her waiting hand. Their eyes met. Then Miki disappeared upstairs and Godzilla reached for his laptop. He had to write down this feeling!
Afterward, he read what he'd written. There was definite song potential in the poem. He saved it to the hard drive and sent it to his poetry folder for later. Then he stuck his head in the kitchen sink and turned the cold water on full blast. The icy spray poured between his eyes, rolled down his snout and pooled against his nostrils. He stayed there until his heart slowed and the heat in his stomach tapered away.
Man, what is going on with me? Godzilla wondered to himself. I feel like I'm going through a second puberty!
Godzilla startled awake to his door being thrown open. Dim light poured in, revealing Miki in a filmy gold bathrobe. He could see her figure silhouetted by lights outside the bedroom. Odd, he didn't recall her owning a robe like that.
"Godzilla," she whispered. Her tone of voice was strange, but pleasant. "It's so cold tonight. Can we sleep in the same bed?"
His brain did a wipe and repeat. What? He sat up on his elbow. The blankets were tangled around him in a mess of fabric. He blinked sleepily at her. "Isuppose we could for one night." And, scooting to a cooler part of the mattress, he let her have the warm spot he'd been sleeping on all night.
"Thanks," Miki padded over and climbed under the heavy blankets. The warm length of her body came to rest against his chest, their combined weight trapped by the hollow in the mattress. She started to rub his chest, "You're as cold as I am! C'mon, let's warm ourselves up."
Godzilla's heart fluttered and he swallowed. The way Miki's eyes glittered in the moonlight had him hypnotized. "Warm ourselves up?"
"Mmhmm..." she scooted closer and touched a kiss to the side of his neck. He felt her move the robe aside and her bare legs brushed his knees.
"Miki," he breathed her name. All five of his senses ached for her and there she was...lying in his arms. Closing his eyes, he tipped her chin up and kissed her. Or at least he did the best he could to kiss her with his huge teeth in the way. Suddenly, she lurched forward. He felt his entire sensory system funnel down to a single, burning point. Waves of tingling heat burst from that ember and spread across his body. "Miki!" he gasped. "Oh, my God!"
"Godzilla..." she giggled.
He lost control and whimpered.
THUD! THUD! "GODZILLA!" THUD! THUD!
Godzilla's eyes flew open to late morning light pouring into the window. He was trembling and felt strangely delicious all over.
It was Miki pounding on his bedroom door.
"Godzilla! Are you okay in there?"
"Huh? I-I'm fine!" Godzilla yelled at the door. "I was dreaming! I'm okay! Did I wake you?"
"It's ten in the morning." Miki muffled from behind the door. "I've been up since eight. Um...I already ate breakfast so you don't have to cook for me. I'll let you be now. Sorry to bother you!"
"It's fine," replied Godzilla. He yawned, stretching as he rolled over...and he landed in a cold, gooey puddle in the middle of his mattress.
What the?! Did I wet the bed?! Confused, he felt under himself. Then he stared at the stringy goo on his claws. It took his brain a few seconds to recognize the substance. It wasn't pee.
"...lovely..." Godzilla let his head fall back onto his pillow. He dragged the blankets off his bed. The mess seemed to be contained on the top-sheet. He made a face as he peeled the top-sheet off the mattress and wadded it up. The stain had gone all the way through! I better wash the sheets before this gets all crusty. Wait...where's Miki? I can't let her see me all slimy!
Godzilla ran into the bathroom for a quick shower. Then he poked his head out the door, saw no sign of Miki and made a break for it down the stairs. The laundry room was adjacent to the basement stairwell. He rounded the corner just as Miki stepped out of the laundry room with a basket full of clothes in her hands.
Godzilla actually shrieked. "AAH!" He tried to hide the soiled sheet behind his back. "Uh...hi."
Miki arched an eyebrow. Godzilla was panting, he looked like demons just chased him down the stairs and now he acted completely casual? Something had to be going on. "Is everything okay?"
"Fine, never better." Godzilla replied. "Just...practicing some--aerobics--cardio...stuff."
"Then why are you hiding a sheet behind your back?"
If Godzilla's face could turn red, it would have looked like a tomato. "Laundry."
She smiled, "Oh, I can wash that for you--"
"N-no, that's okay." He leaned back on the wall, preventing her from getting anywhere near the sheet. "Thanks...I'll do it. You're already loaded down anyway."
"Okaaaaay," Miki eyed him suspiciously. Then she shook her head and brushed past him. Her ponytail bounced as she hopped up the stairs.
Godzilla ran into the laundry room and shut the door. It only took about twenty minutes to wash the sheet. He grabbed it from the dryer, rushed back up the stairs and froze when he realized he still had a huge, sticky stain on the mattress itself. If he put the sheet over it, it'd just get sticky all over again! He stood there puzzling over this problem until the only probable solution came to mind.
Meanwhile, in her room, Miki methodically put her clothes into their proper places. She had just closed her underwear drawer when Godzilla knocked on the door. "Miki?"
She automatically replied, "I'm decent! You can open the door."
The door creaked open. Godzilla poked his head in. "Uhhh, Miki, can I borrow your hair dryer?"
"My hair dryer?" Miki stared at him, blinking. "I guess so--"
"Thanks!" Godzilla vanished. His footsteps clattered around the corner. Then he passed her room again and his bedroom door banged shut. Miki heard her hair dryer start running full blast. She couldn't help but giggle into her sock drawer. I better not ask.
Gentle piano music drifted around the wooden basement. Miki smiled, listening to Godzilla play while she leaned against the grand piano's curving side. The cordless phone sat on the floor nearby. One of the designers she saw last week was due to call at any moment and inform her on her next shoot.
"Remember that Romeo and Juliet song I did on the violin?" asked Godzilla without ever missing a note.
"That was gorgeous," Miki replied. She gazed at the piano's shiny black finish and marveled at its smoothness.
"I wrote lyrics for it. Would you like to hear?" He grinned up at her. Funny...at one time Miki found that expression frighteningly unpleasant...and now she thought his smile was rather charming. She liked how he squinted and stuck his tongue out when he laughed.
"Yes! I love it when you sing, Godzilla."
"Okay," Godzilla adjusted his position on the piano bench. His cheeks were warm, but no one could ever tell he was blushing. He began to gently play an intro. "The lyrics are in Italian. It's...more poetic that way."
Miki hugged herself and nodded, still smiling softly.
Godzilla slithered his fingers down the scale. He opened his mouth and the soft lyrics rolled out with the same inflections he'd played on the violin, Un giorno sai, per noi verrą. La libertą di amarci qui senza limiti. E fiorirą il sogno a noi -- negato si svelerą l'amor celato ormai." Then he closed his eyes and played more intensely, his vocals floated over the piano like feathers on the wind.
Miki rubbed at the goosebumps forming on her arms. Her eyes were welling over just like before. She saw Godzilla take in a deep breath. Suddenly, he tilted his head back and let the lyrics burst free as loud as he could sing them. His voice literally filled the entire room until the walls rang. He was pleading with her for something, but what? She stayed still, listening, absorbing the music until he brought the song to a close.
The music stopped. Godzilla's voice and the last piano chord hung in the room for many long seconds before finally going silent. Somewhere during the interlude and the final chord, Miki had moved around the piano to stand beside the bench. His strange, tear-rimmed white eyes gazed up at her. Up close it was easy to see the silver sheen of his irises. Miki flashed back to what she'd jokingly said to Hideo--
...I'll just focus on something good about him...
...It's like talking with a really crippled up person in a wheelchair, just...ignore the chair and focus on them...
--and swallowed as her vision misted over. It seemed so unfair for Godzilla. He was a wonderful person with an amazing voice! Yet those beautiful things were trapped inside the flesh of a hideous monster. Miki suddenly realized that half the time she didn't even notice Godzilla's ugly exterior. He was just...a person...like anybody else--a person she cared about a lot. If only people could see past his face and get to know him they would realize he only looked scary!
How long have you been alone here? Miki asked silently. She reached out and laid her palm lightly against his cheek. His eyes darted nervously to her hand, then refocused back on her. She felt him tremble at her touch. How long has it been since anyone touched you?
Godzilla drew a sharp breath. "M-Miki?"
Miki let her hand slide forward across the bumpy line of his mouth. His lips quivered as her fingers glided across his smooth fangs. She sat down on the bench. He followed her motion with his eyes and gulped nervously. Again, they stared at each other. Then Miki leaned forward. Godzilla blinked at her like a deer in headlights until a sudden calmness came over him. What was there to fear? He couldn't kiss like a human...but it didn't matter. They both moved closer and their eyes started to close.
The phone rang.
"Oh!" Miki jumped, startled and blushing. Without thinking, she grabbed the phone and answered it. It was the designer. She shot Godzilla an apologetic look and mouthed 'I have to take this'. He nodded and she darted out of the room for something to write on.
Godzilla touched his face, right where the warmth of her hand still lingered, and smiled. He would forever remember that moment--the exact second in time at 4:32:06 p.m. on January 11th of the year 2007--as the moment when he fell completely in love with Miki Saegusa. And in that same instant he realized how he felt about Miki, he found the theme of his next album. Every song would be something he wanted to say to her.
Last edited by Cyndi; June 22nd, 2010 at 12:22 PM.
Re: Beauty and the Beast
June 22nd, 2010, 04:38 AM
Re: Beauty and the Beast
7. No Longer Anonymous
MikiMew: sorry i haven't been on a lot. been busy. how are you?
perfectsomeone35411: it's ok
perfectsomeone35411: doing real good
MikiMew: good to hear. meh i'm so stuffed from dinner....anyway so what's new for you?
perfectsomeone35411: not much....i missed talking 2 u here.
MikiMew: i missed you too ps *hug*
MikiMew: i've just been so busy with this guy i'm staying with. he's wonderful.
i told u looks r not everything
MikiMew: you were right. but i still want to meet you.
perfectsomeone35411: ur on odo isl rite?
MikiMew: yeah...how'd you know?
perfectsomeone35411: the bg in that pic on the ad for that new body wash stuff
perfectsomeone35411: it's the bay.
perfectsomeone35411: i no that area
MikiMew: oh...that's cool.
There was a long pause. Miki wrinkled her forehead, wondering if she somehow offended her online friend. He was always so sweet and willing to listen to anything she had to say. She started to type in a message to forget it, but he replied before she finished.
perfectsomeone35411: do u no where the abandoned litehouse is? there is only 1 on the whole isl.
MikiMew: oh! yes i can see it from where i am!
perfectsomeone35411: be there on the lite tower @ 10:00 pm & i'll come.
MikiMew: why so late?
perfectsomeone35411: my days r very busy. i can only get away @ nite.
She swallowed, looking out the window at the lighthouse. What if perfectsomeone35411 was some kind of predator out to get her? No...that couldn't be possible...he didn't seem like the type to do those things. Then again all she had was the text he typed into the AIM window.
It was a risk worth taking. She'd just keep her cell phone in her pocket with Godzilla's landline on speed-dial.
MikiMew: ok, i'll be there.
perfectsomeone35411: gr8, i look 4ward to it
perfectsomeone35411: g2g now
perfectsomeone35411: c u in 2 hrs.
MikiMew: bye ^_^ *hug*
Then perfectsomeone35411 logged off and Miki heaved a deep sigh. Her heart thudded against her ribs. She shook her head at herself and wondered why she was so afraid. It wasn't like she was a thirteen year old who went off to meet some forty year old pervert. Miki turned her laptop off and decided to take a shower. After that, she dressed simply in a flowing earth-toned peasant top and new bell bottom jeans with brown platform heels to give herself some height. She tied her hair up into a bun with brown hair sticks and put on just a touch of makeup. Then, giving herself a once over in the mirror, she made her way downstairs.
"Godzilla?" Miki called as her heels thudded on the steps.
"What?" Godzilla picked his head up and a slice of pizza dangled from his teeth. He was sprawled on his belly across one of the red beanbag chairs. His laptop was within his arm's reach. He referred to it occasionally while writing musical notation down on a piece of lined paper.
Miki burst into giggles. He was trying to eat, write music and read lyrics all at the same time! "Um," she walked over and caught the pizza slice before it fell across his notebook paper. "I'm going out for a little while."
"You're all dressed up--" He swallowed a chunk whole, "--at nine-thirty at night?"
"I'm just going to meet someone. I have my phone. I can call you if I get in trouble." Miki put the slice down on a piece of scrap paper. "I really need to get going. He's meeting me at ten. See you later!"
Godzilla's face became serious. "Be careful! It might be some sicko. Don't let him try anything with you...hey, maybe I should come with you."
"No, stay here. I'm fine. I'll call you if he does anything I don't like." She waved, grabbed her sweater off the rack by the door and hurried out before he could protest.
Getting to her destination took a little longer than Miki anticipated. Her watch said nine-fifty when she arrived at the foot of the abandoned lighthouse. The night was cold, dark and damp with a marine layer moving in off the coast. She thought the way the fog muffled everything like a blanket extremely creepy. Sighing, she deeply regretted the chunky heels. It wasn't like she'd anticipated precarious, rocky ground. The white lighthouse was a cylinder that sat on a hilltop overlooking a defunct scrap yard. Pieces of twisted metal littered the landscape. Not exactly scenic.
Well, I better get to the top,
Miki thought to herself. She grabbed the rusty ladder and jiggled it. No problems there, so she went ahead and ascended to the top of the tower. The platforms were steel. Her heels clanged against the rough, rusted metal. Behind her, the glass of the dusty lighthouse lens gleamed dully.
Miki glanced at her watch again. The hands glowed in the dark, telling her the time. It was nine fifty-nine. She moved partway around the huge lighthouse lens and discovered another ladder led down the back side. Good. She had an escape route in the event of an emergency.
Ten o'clock went by. Miki paced the platform, wondering if perfectsomeone35411 flaked out on her. She was about to give up when, at ten-fifteen, the ladder creaked. Miki scooted out of sight in the same instant her visitor heaved himself up onto the platform. She peeked around the corner to catch a glimpse of him and her breath caught in her throat.
It was Godzilla.
Miki's mind did a wipe and rewind. This didn't make sense! But wait....yes, it did
. They had been chatting on AIM for almost a year now. perfectsomeone35411 always said the nicest things, always comforted her when she was down and basically made her feel comfortable enough to tell him things she never told her father. Using the anonymity of the internet, Godzilla had been touching her life for longer than she realized. And he trusted her enough to reveal himself.
Miki stepped around the lens. "G-Godzilla?"
Godzilla faced her. In the fog all Miki really saw were the white of his eyes and fangs. He grinned. "Now you know why I was so shocked to see you when we met."
"Why didn't you tell me then?" she giggled, giddy from the revelation.
"I didn't want to shatter the illusion, Miki. You were so distraught that if I told you that night, you probably wouldn't have wanted anything to do with me ever again. In fact," he swallowed, turning to look off into the fog, "I almost didn't come...out of fear that you would be angry at me for deceiving you."
Miki moved closer to Godzilla and said, "That's the beauty of the internet. You can get to know people before you ever see their face." She wrapped her arms around his neck and hugged him. "I'm glad it turned out this way. What you look like doesn't matter to me anymore. You're the best friend I've ever had."
Miki felt Godzilla's chest shudder. Something wet dribbled onto her arm. Glancing up, she saw his mouth quivering...he was crying. "Oh, Miki...I--you're so good to me." He sniffed once and reached around to embrace her. His arms were strong, but gentle. She held him while he wept softly against her hair.
Three months ago, Miki didn't even want to touch this creature. It really amazed her how normal Godzilla seemed. He always listened to her, he treated her with respect and never ridiculed her quirks. In fact, Miki thought Godzilla was a lot better than most of the men she ever worked with. The modeling business was full of sleazeballs hoping to see some inappropriate skin. She knew Godzilla sometimes snuck peeks at her, it was a man thing to look at breasts, but he never looked at her like a piece of meat.
A 'man' thing?
she blinked as she became conscious of his rough hide against her cheek. He is a man...he is to me, anyway. The man and the monster are two different beings living in the same body. That's all
"Miki," Godzilla's voice vibrated through his collarbone. His tears had stopped. "You're shivering..."
"Just a chill. L-Let's go home."
He nodded and they descended the ladder. By the time they got to the bottom, Miki felt like she jumped into an ice bath. She hugged herself and shivered violently. Her head felt stuffed and full as if her heart beat inside her skull. Fatigue made her limbs weigh ten tons.
"I--don't feel so well." Miki held onto the cold metal ladder. "This is so weird, I felt okay when I left the house."
Godzilla touched his palm to her forehead. "You're burning up!"
"I'll be f--" she tasted bile in the back of her throat. "--oh no!" Instinctively, she turned away from Godzilla and threw up in the dirt behind the ladder. Tears welled in her eyes. Her face flushed with embarrassment. She remained bent over until her stomach stopped doing flips. "I'm so sorry...I'm ruining this moment."
"Don't be sorry for something you can't help, Miki," Godzilla replied, laying a hand on her back. "Come here, I'll carry you home."
Too ill to protest, Miki let Godzilla lift her up bridal style. She found comfort in his strong hands and the sound of his breath rushing past her ear. He took a different path than she did. It wasn't long before the warmth of the house greeted her shuddering body. Godzilla carried her all the way upstairs so she could change into comfortable pajamas, wash off her makeup and get into bed. She even shivered while under the covers.
While Miki got herself squared away, Godzilla disappeared and reappeared with a bottle of ginger ale, some Tylenol and a TV tray to set it all down next to the bed.
"No! Don't stay here, I might be contagious." Miki half sat up, alarmed at the sight of Godzilla bringing his office chair into the room.
"Relax!" Godzilla chuckled. "I don't get sick so easily. Now," he poured ginger ale into a glass and offered it to her with a Tylenol tablet, "take this. It'll settle your stomach and help the fever."
Miki licked her lips and drained the pill with the bubbling liquid in the glass. Some of her nausea faded. She lowered herself to lie flat again. "Um, Godzilla? Could you...no, never mind, it's stupid..."
"It's just--whenever I got sick as a kid, my dad always held me so I didn't have to sleep alone while I felt bad--but I'm not little anymore."
Though it was dark, Miki made out the slight smile crossing Godzilla's face. A moment later she felt the blankets shift as he slid under the covers behind her. He didn't take up very much space despite his size. His weight was another matter entirely. Miki had nowhere to lie except against his chest. She turned over to face him and his arms encircled her once again. He whispered, "Sometimes we all need to be a little childish."
Tears welled in Miki's eyes. She blinked them away and curled more into his embrace. He was purring softly like a gigantic cat. How he made that sound was beyond her, but she found it extremely comforting. It slowly lulled her to sleep.
Godzilla woke up the next morning to find Miki still sound asleep. He half-smiled as he brushed her bangs off her damp brow. She still had a bit of a fever, though not as bad as last night. Then he glanced up at the little wall hanging of Mothra. The sun chose that moment to illuminate the mirror, giving him a view of his own face. His reflection made him shudder and turn away.
He turned back to Miki. "I'm sorry, did I wake you up?"
Miki shook her head to indicate no. Suddenly, she noticed the clock and her eyes popped open wide. "It's almost six! I'm supposed to be on the bay for a photo shoot at six-thirty!"
"Miki, you're sick. You can't--"
"There's no time to get another model. If I don't do this, I could blow a huge opportunity." Miki said. She detangled herself from the sheets, took some more Tylenol and made her way to the door. "I'll just go there and come right back afterward. It shouldn't take long."
Godzilla straightened a bit. "Who is doing this shoot?"
"An American. His name is Thomas Anderson."
"What's his number?"
Miki told Godzilla the phone number. Godzilla picked up her little pink cell phone, dialed it and turned it onto speaker. The other line rang several times before somebody picked up.
"This's Thomas," answered a loud bass voice.
"Good morning, Thomas." Godzilla said pleasantly. "This is G."
"G...as in the singer?"
"Holy--guys! Check this out, I have G on the phone!" Thomas rattled his phone around before his voice came back to say, "What can I do for you, G? Looking for a cover shot for another album?"
"Ah, no." Godzilla chuckled. "I have one of your models here with me. Miki Saegusa, who is staying in my home. I regret to inform you that she's extremely ill and can't come to this shoot you were supposed to do today. Now, if I send you a check for ten grand, would you let her come back for a shoot when she's well again?"
Miki's eyes nearly bugged out of her head. On the phone, Thomas said, "Well um...sure. We'll have to really rush, but I--think I can arrange that for you--er, for Ms. Saegusa. I can wait up to five days and then I have to get somebody else. Does that work?"
"You have a deal. Thank you, Thomas. Bye." Godzilla smiled and hung up without letting the photographer get a word in edgewise. He placed Miki's phone back on the desk.
"That was amazing," Miki grinned at him. "Thank you."
"No problem. Heh...I like to watch America's Next Top Model
...and there is always a girl who falls seriously ill and does a photoshoot anyway. She rarely looks good. But this isn't a TV show, Miki. I want you to look and feel your best. Though..." he winked, "you're pretty cute even with a hundred degree fever." He could NOT believe he said that out loud. For a brief moment he felt his blood run cold, fearing she might think him a pervert.
The comment won a flush-faced giggle from her instead. Then she seemed to get a little lightheaded and made her way back to the bed. "Thanks, Godzilla. I'm supposed to shoot with a guy anyway. His name's Aleron Burke...he's French I guess...I've heard he's really good-looking. I really don't want his first impression of me to be all sick and throwing up."
Godzilla blinked. That hurt a little. "I understand. First impressions are always important."
"Especially in modeling."
"Yeah." He stood slowly and stretched with a wide yawn. This conversation had taken a decidedly uncomfortable turn, so he changed the subject. "I'll fix you something light to eat. That okay with you, Miki?" When she nodded, he headed downstairs to fix some breakfast. Scrambled eggs and bacon for himself and buttered toast with ginger ale for Miki. He sang as he cooked, unaware that Miki crawled back out of bed and sat down at the top of the stairs to listen. She got back into bed real quick when he finished cooking. Godzilla brought her toast on a small tray.
Miki smiled and scooted back to sit up. While she ate, she said, "Let's watch a movie. Something...romantic. Have anything romantic?"
Godzilla laughed. "I know a good one, but it's kind of long."
"What movie is that?"
." he half-smiled. "I have it in my collection downstairs."
Miki's eyes lit up. "I've always wanted to see that!"
So, together, they watched Titanic
on DVD. Miki commented occasionally on the wardrobe designs and Godzilla sometimes talked about the music. At the scene where Jack and Rose kissed, Miki put her head on Godzilla's shoulder and took his hand. Godzilla's heart pounded in his chest. He slowly put his arm around her so she could rest more comfortably against him. She did nothing to discourage the gesture.
"Someday I want to do something like that," Miki commented.
Godzilla blinked out of his funk and glanced at the screen. Jack was drawing the very naked Rose. "Hm?"
"Have someone photograph me naked. But...not something trashy. Something like what Jack is drawing."
That made Godzilla swallow hard. "Maybe if someone needs art photography, you could model for them. Maybe even..." he sucked in a deep breath, "...I might ask you. Could be an album cover or something. I'd have to crop out the breasts and below, or airbrush over it on my laptop." God, he was beginning to tremble.
"I'd love to model for you." Miki replied softly without even a thought. "Anytime, anywhere." Godzilla's heart almost exploded. Miki turned her head to look up at him. Her brown eyes swallowed him whole. "I wish I could take pictures of you and show the world that you aren't some freakish monster."
"It's not that easy."
"I wish it was." She looked back at the TV screen. "I wish everybody could see you sing and know it's you who owns that beautiful voice...it's not fair that people treat you like a monster."
"I do horrible things to the cities," said Godzilla. "I...hurt people. I hurt the economy."
"That's what makes it so hard. You do all that and then you're so wonderful to me." She sniffed. "You don't mean to hurt people when you do that, do you?"
"No." he sighed, forgetting about the movie completely. "I hate that people have to die because of me. But I have to act like an animal. Nobody can know who I really am. The world just wouldn't understand."
Miki put her head back on Godzilla's shoulder. She looked at the screen and watched the Titanic sink. "I do."
He smiled slightly against her messy hair. If only the world was as wonderful as you are, Miki
Last edited by Cyndi; June 22nd, 2010 at 12:22 PM.
Re: Beauty and the Beast
June 22nd, 2010, 04:39 AM
Re: Beauty and the Beast
8. Looking Under the Surface
Aleron Burke was extremely handsome. Dark hair, ice-blue eyes, chiseled features and a body to die for. Miki only had time for a quick hello before she got whisked away to wardrobe. They were shooting an ad for a new seaweed skin lotion. It was an extremely edgy ad, but Thomas liked shooting that way.
Miki felt incredibly thankful to Godzilla for letting her recover. This photoshoot involved water and no way to walk, so if she got sick to her stomach there would've been no escape. She would have puked right in front of Aleron. It only took her two days to get better. Godzilla insisted she rested for three just to be sure.
Wardrobe personnel helped Miki climb into the heavy, uncomfortable red and orange mermaid fins. She had no qualms about being topless while the hair stylist teased her hair into soft waves. Somebody gave her flesh-toned pieces of latex to cover her nipples and then glued real clam shells onto the latex. The makeup artist barely put any makeup on Miki's face. Just some foundation, mascara and deep red lipstick. Wardrobe people put expensive pearl necklaces, earrings and bracelets on her body. Then Miki let two strong men carry her out to sit on the beach. When she was in position, the makeup artist plucked a piece of seaweed from the water and draped it over her shoulder. She splashed around to get herself wet.
"I'm already liking this shoot," Aleron grinned as he walked into the surf. His French accent was heavy. "You're gorgeous."
Miki laughed and waved to him, "Thanks."
Thomas gave his camera a final check. He was a tall, balding African American man in his early thirties. Miki saw him like a funny uncle who brings treats every time he visits. She felt completely at ease in front of his camera. Especially since he loved to tell jokes that made her laugh.
"Okay, here's the story we're telling," Thomas began in his rich voice, "Miki, you're a beautiful mermaid with the most perfect, soft skin. You're so perfect that Al here can't resist the urge to touch you and feel how soft you are. This is a very intimate shoot. Are we ready?"
Somebody measured the light near Miki. She was grateful to have the sun behind her.
On cue, Aleron got himself all wet and sat down in the sand next to Miki. His bangs were falling in his eyes, but he pushed them back and reached out. Miki felt herself stiffen a little when he touched her. It made her suddenly uncomfortable. She was so used to Godzilla's rough hide that smooth human skin seemed almost alien.
Get yourself together! she berated herself as she forced her body and face to relax. Off to the side, Thomas turned on his boom box. He always worked with music. Miki felt her eyes brighten when Godzilla's beautiful voice floated across the beach. It almost made her laugh...months ago she would have thought that voice belonged to someone who looked like Aleron.
"Beautiful, Miki! Al, lean in a bit more--great!" Thomas's shutter clicked as Aleron ran his hand down Miki's arm. Miki slid her hand across Aleron's cheek and leaned in as if to kiss him. "Perfect! Oh you two are hot!" Thomas commented. He moved in closer, then backed up and tilted his camera for a better angle. "Turn a little this way, Miki. Gorgeous...you're a natural. Al, you can't get enough of the mermaid's soft skin."
Aleron responded to Thomas's advice by putting his hands on Miki's shoulders and running them over her back. Miki told herself she had to just let go. She sighed and turned around, resting her back on Aleron's chest and placing his hand her stomach. Then she tilted her head back to lengthen her neck, cupped his cheek with her palm and parted her lips as if to kiss him. Aleron caught her plan and went along with it like a good male model should. He used his other hand to gently caress her cheek. His eyes had a hungry look in them. Miki felt something poke at the base of her spine and realized he was enjoying this a little too much.
"Hot! Yeah! That's what I want!" Thomas called. "Stretch those fins this way, Miki. Great job! Oh, hot, hot, hot! Fall into her eyes, Al. Miki, smile a little--excellent. You got it! Oh! I caught that wave!"
Miki felt Aleron's hands all over her, moving dangerously close to her breasts. Thankfully, the shoot wrapped before he could get too intimate. She was glad when the assistants got her behind the curtain and helped her remove the fake fins. While she was dressing, Thomas peeked around the curtain. "Hey, how are you feeling?"
"Hey," Miki pulled on a robe and reached inside to peel the latex off her chest. She winced as the material pulled painfully on the sensitive skin. "Better now, thanks." Her heavy Japanese accent made her a little uncomfortable. She spoke fluent English, though, but people sometimes had trouble understanding her.
Thomas glanced over his shoulder and came all the way around the curtain. He took off his sunglasses to regard Miki with his brown eyes. "G's check came today. I, heh, almost don't want to cash it. It's like having his autograph."
"You like his music? I didn't know you were a fan."
"He's different." He said. "You seem to know him. What's he look like? Why doesn't he ever show his face?"
His questions caught her by surprise. She answered, "He's nice...he's a good friend of mine. He--doesn't want people to see him because it's his voice he wants to share, not what he looks like. And come to think of it he's right. We focus so much on appearances."
"Beauty and sex are what sells." Thomas shrugged. "You make it sound like G is butt ugly or something."
"His voice is beautiful. He's a great person." Miki found the conversation turning sour. She wanted to tell Thomas to look up pictures of Godzilla on the internet and he'd have all the pics of G he could ever want. "And those are what make him...beautiful...to me."
"You've changed, Miki," said Thomas with a dubious look in his eyes. He mopped sweat off his face with a hankie from his pocket. "A year ago, you used to laugh at people who were unattractive or fat."
"That was two years ago, not one. I was sixteen and in high school, a place where you have to be perfect or nobody likes you." She rolled her eyes. "I guess you could say I grew up a little since then."
"I see. Well...you seemed to have such good chemistry with Aleron. He wants to take you out to lunch after you're done cleaning up here."
Miki jerked her head around to look at Thomas. Well, Aleron was very good-looking. Maybe it wouldn't hurt to get to know him a little better. She'd seen his portfolio and he took amazing pictures. In some ways it tickled her that she was chosen out of six other girls to be photographed with him.
"I guess I better hurry up and get dressed, then. Thanks, Thomas."
Thomas disappeared without a word. Miki let her breath puff out her cheeks as she sighed. People were just so shallow! Or maybe she was seeing the world with new eyes. She couldn't be sure, and it was too much to ponder in a place like a photoshoot set. With another sigh, she hopped off her chair and reached for her clothes.
It was cool in the recording studio. Godzilla always kept the temperature low to maintain a steady level of alertness. At that very moment he was singing the waltz poem he recently wrote. He'd titled it So She Dances, and the emotions he felt for Miki came flooding out with each note he sang. There even came a point where he completely forgot he was recording a song. Godzilla slipped into a vivid daydream--him and Miki on a dance floor, swirling through fog under bright lights. He dipped her, making her smile. Then she straightened and slowly met him in a fiery kiss that set his bones ablaze.
"When I close my eyes I can see--the spotlights are bright on you and me. We've got the floor, and you're in my arms...how could I ask for more?" Godzilla smiled as he floated down to reality once again. "So she dances in and out of the crowd like a glance. This romance is from afar, calling me silently. I can't keep on watching forever. And I'm givin' up this view just to tell her..."
The music stopped and he opened his eyes to find Miki sitting on a stool outside the recording booth with headphones on. He always kept a set connected to inside so she could listen whenever she wanted. She smiled half-heartedly at him and mouthed, 'Great song!'.
Godzilla grinned sheepishly back as he stepped out of the recording booth. "I'll talk in a minute. Bathroom first, I'm going to bust...damn coffee."
"Been there. I'll wait." Miki said. Something about her tone was troubled.
He hurried to take care of his bladder, washed his hands and opened the bathroom door. Miki was right there, which made him leap a mile. "Good thing I already went!"
"Sorry," she blushed. "I thought you went upstairs." Her eyes dropped and she leaned on the wall with a heavy sigh.
"Are you okay?" Godzilla leaned forward a little, trying to meet her eyes, but she was looking at the floor. "Did the photoshoot suck?"
"It's the guy I shot with. Aleron Burke. Or Aleron Blockhead is more like it. He was a jerk!" Miki's brown eyes flared angrily when she finally met Godzilla's gaze. "All he talked about was himself. He thinks he's God's gift to women. And when I told him he had an ugly personality, he got mad at me! He said there are many women who wanted to be in my position--on a date with him--and that I should feel grateful that he asked me out! Can you believe the nerve of that...that...*******?" She snarled, "Then he started in on how he thinks you're ugly and that's why you don't allow photographs. I said 'G is more of a man than you'll ever be, you monster!' and I walked out on him. And this is after he tried to feel me up during the shoot! He was practically asking me to his bed all through the date! That...that arrogant *******!"
Godzilla just stood back and watched Miki rant. The way she would jab her finger at the floor was rather cute. Anger brought more color to her face as well. However, her words struck a deep chord in him. She had walked out on a date with a handsome model, a model who behaved a lot like he used to in the past, to come talk to him.
"I hated him when he insulted you." Miki finally came to an end to her rant. "I hated him even more when, as I was leaving, he said I wasn't that pretty and was probably a terrible lay anyway. So typical, he says nasty things to make himself feel better. Well screw him! He probably doesn't have much in the way of manhood anyhow, considering the huge truck he drives!"
At that, Godzilla burst out laughing. Miki joined in a few seconds later and they collapsed together onto the couch, clinging to each other.
"Not much in the way of manhood!" Godzilla gasped between laughter fits, "That's a good one, Miki!"
Miki gained control of her mirth. "Thanks. And you have coffee breath. How much did you drink? Were you up all night recording?"
"A whole pot and yes."
"Augh! That means you're going to crash at about five and sleep until noon tomorrow afternoon." She propped herself up on her elbow and her face grew serious. "I really do hate it when people insult you, Godzilla."
"I get a lot of flack for refusing to appear in public." He shrugged one shoulder and met her eyes. "And I hate to break it to you, but I am ugly as hell. My face scares people. My face and the things I do to cities are all people can see."
Miki started to laugh. She shook her head at Godzilla's questioning look. "It's just..." she wiped her eyes, "...people see that I'm a model and think that means I'm brainless and shove my finger down my throat every time I eat. Isn't it funny how people expect certain things from somebody just by judging their looks? Oh, fat people must eat a lot. Oh, that crippled person is probably retarded. Oh, she's a blonde, so she's stupid. Oh, he's Middle-Eastern, so he's probably a terrorist. It's sad!"
Godzilla flashed back to the old beggar on his porch and the sight of his hands morphing into ugly claws. The image faded as quickly as it came. He slowly nodded his head. "Yes, it is...and you could ruin everything if you misjudge the wrong person."
He felt Miki take his hand and squeeze it. Her touch sent electricity through his pulse. She said, "It's so strange with you. I just don't notice what you look like anymore. I see you, yes, but I don't notice your looks as much as I used to." Her lips curled up in a half smile that made his heart skip a few beats. "And what I see isn't hideous at all. Not to me, anyway. And it annoys me that I can't make the rest of the world see what I see when I look at you."
Heat raced to his face. He swallowed. "How can you look at me and not see a monster? I...don't understand."
Miki replied, "It's all in your eyes. They say a lot. You're somebody who's been alone for so long and hurt by how much the world hates you." She started to blush, which he found extremely attractive. "I think your eyes are kind of pretty. They remind me of the moon."
The pace of his heart doubled again. Miki's words left his tongue dry. He didn't know what to say back to her. He opened his mouth to say something lame, but she stopped him by putting a finger on his lips. "You don't have to say anything," she said. "Godzilla, I want you to take those pictures of me."
"Those art photos," she explained, standing up. "I'm tired of having my picture taken by men who think I'm 'marketable'. I want to feel beautiful and sexy instead of just looking it. And--I think it would be an honor to be on the cover of my favorite singer's next album." She added the last part with a wide grin that lit up her face.
Godzilla could not resist grinning back at her. "I haven't done real photography in a long time. I might be rusty."
"It'll be fine," said Miki. She leaned forward suddenly and for one heart-stopping second Godzilla thought she was about to kiss his mouth. Her face moved past his snout and she pressed her soft lips gently to his cheek. The smell of peaches flooded his nose. It took everything in his power not to grab her and kiss her mouth. She whispered in his ear, "Any time you want to do this is fine."
Miki slipped off the couch and bounded up the stairs. Godzilla pulled his brain back into gear just as her feet disappeared from view. He shouted up the stairway, "Is tonight okay?"
He waited for Miki to come out of her room, close the bathroom door and start the shower. Only then did he bolt for his bedroom closet, where he kept his photography equipment. He did recently buy a really, super-new digital camera online before it went into mass production, and this was the first opportunity he had to use it.
Last edited by Cyndi; June 22nd, 2010 at 12:22 PM.
Re: Beauty and the Beast
June 22nd, 2010, 04:40 AM
Re: Beauty and the Beast
Miki and Godzilla ate dinner in relative silence. No TV, no radio, nothing but the sounds of their silverware occasionally clicking on the white plates. Godzilla cooked a delicious meal of spicy prime ribs and macaroni. Miki initially thought such a combination wouldn't taste very nice, but Godzilla urged her to try it before she judged it. And it tasted great. He'd taken the same thing she said to him earlier that afternoon and reminded her to practice what she preached. Watching Godzilla eat was never a pretty sight. He couldn't chew with his mouth shut no matter how hard he tried. To make up for it, he never, ever spoke with his mouth full and kind of ducked behind the center piece while he chewed. Miki thought that was kind of cute. He'd take a bite and suddenly vanish behind the bouquet of fake yellow daffodils sitting in a tall golden vase. Miki saw it in a mall a few weeks back and thought it'd look good in the kitchen. It brought out all the gold fixtures and accents in the room. It also protected Godzilla's dignity during meals.
She set her napkin down. "Yeah. That was delicious! You have to make this again sometime."
Godzilla's chair scraped as he pushed it back to get up. He gathered up her plate, silverware and napkin and headed for the sink to wash the dishes. Miki swallowed when he turned away. Why did she feel so suddenly scared? She wasn't afraid that he'd hurt her--he'd never do anything to harm her. Maybe she feared the 'no going back' aspect. It was like giving away her virginity. Once gone, it could never be regained. Deep down, she knew that once Godzilla's camera began to snap, there was no undoing it.
"Hm?" Miki glanced up.
He turned the kitchen sink on with his tail and shoved the faucet to the plugged half of the sink. All without taking his eyes off her. "Are you all right about tonight? You can always back out if you don't feel--"
"No." She cut him off, "I want to do this. Where will you be shooting?"
"I...was kind of wanting to let you pick that spot. Anywhere you want."
Miki blinked. "The sink."
"By the sink?"
"No," she said, pointing. "The sink's overflowing!"
Godzilla turned just as water began to cascade onto the floor.
"Oh, ****!" He hurried over to shut off the water. Miki dove in behind him to unplug the drain. Her pink blouse got water splattered all down the front. She giggled and shook the water off her hands. Godzilla leaned on the counter and laughed as well. "I guess we're both a little nervous."
That was just so cute of him. How odd that a lot of things Godzilla did seemed cute to her. Cute and a bit dorky at times. She smiled and patted his shoulder. "Let's do the shoot in your bedroom. You can do my makeup however you want. My body is your canvas tonight."
The way he looked at her after she said that made her heart melt. He gazed at her that way a lot--that almost sleepy-eyed, soft puppy dog gentleness with a hint of a smile. She never knew anyone who gave her such a look...and she liked it a lot better than the hungry, lustful expression Aleron gave her earlier. He slowly tilted his head and said, "I'll be upstairs in two minutes."
Miki let her breath out slowly, nodded and brushed past Godzilla to get ready. In her room, she changed into a long, white satin robe and gathered her hair and makeup supplies. She heard a knock on her door a moment later and said, "I have my makeup and hair stuff here. Do you want to fix me up in my bathroom or yours?"
"Mine is fine." Godzilla answered.
The camera and tripod set up in Godzilla's bedroom reminded Miki of what was about to happen. She paused a moment to take in the room. Piles of stuff on the floor had been swept hastily up against the walls. The black sheets on Godzilla's huge bed looked soft and inviting. When he led her to the bathroom, she did not question the lack of mirrors, though she did notice a small hand-held mirror sitting by the sink.
"I was thinking I'd keep a mostly natural look. Just...hey, what's your favorite way to do eye shadow?"
"Um," Miki giggled, "I was never good at putting it on myself. I love smoky eyes, though."
Godzilla glanced at the makeup bag she brought. "Then I'll do that. Here...you can sit on the toilet. Are you okay with a black base color?"
"Black works for me. It'll match your sheets." She was falling outside of herself, floating somewhere in a world just slightly outside reality. At his command she put the toilet lid down and sat. "How do you know how to do makeup?"
"I read a lot, and I saw it done on Youtube." Godzilla said, chuckling. "I've never actually done this before, but I know how to do this, so you'll look fine. I promise. Now, let me know if I tickle too much."
Miki felt him gently sponge foundation onto her skin. A very light amount, just enough to eliminate shine. It tickled, but not a lot. His hands were trembling. She pretended not to notice. He reached for the eye shadow applicator. Her eyes automatically closed as he tilted her head back. The way he applied the eye shadow was soft, slow and careful like a caress across her eyelids. He didn't just slop it on with the scratchy brush like most makeup artists did--he used the little applicator first, gently. She felt him pat the base color onto the whole of her eyelids and then use a small brush to lightly tap another shade on the inner and outer corners of her eyes.
"What highlight are you using?" Miki asked, curious.
"The silver shimmer." He said.
The brush disappeared and came back against her bottom eyelids. After a moment, a slightly larger, softer brush swished back and forth to blend and create the smoke effect. He repeated this on her other eye. It was so quiet that she swore she heard her own heart beating faster. Sometimes she could hear Godzilla breathing through his nose. He dusted on only a tiny amount of blush onto her cheeks.
"Got any lip gloss?" Godzilla's smooth voice sliced the quiet.
"Try the purple bag."
"Thanks." Then his fingers were on her lips, shockingly cold with the gloss on them. He wiped his hand off on a towel and reached over her shoulder to run his fingers through her hair, smoothing it down. "No hairspray...I'm going to leave it natural. It's nice this way."
Miki smiled at that.
Godzilla's face was only a few inches away from hers because he had to bend down to reach her hair. He gave her that 'puppy dog' look and softly asked, "Are you ready?"
Miki picked up the mirror to study her reflection. The eye shadow was dark on her eyelids and faded gently to pale silver near her eyebrows. It made her eyes very sultry. The gloss added fullness to her pink lips. Other than that her makeup looked extremely natural. She felt...beautiful. "Yes, I'm ready."
Godzilla seemed to get even more nervous. "O-okay, I'll be waiting out here with the camera. There's no rush." He gave Miki a little nod and slipped out the door. She heard his camera equipment rattle around, then silence. He was waiting for her.
No turning back now, Miki thought, shutting off the bathroom light. She emerged from the dark bathroom to find Godzilla and his camera at the foot of the bed. Soft, but bright lighting came from a single lamp with the shade removed. It was sitting on the dresser, and Miki stood right next to it so the glow fell across her body. Godzilla's eyes seemed to grow when her hands moved to the edges of her filmy white robe. Something strange and warm raced down her spine. She locked eyes with him as she let the robe fall slowly away, baring her body completely.
Here I am.
Time seemed to halt right there. Trapped briefly in the instant before Godzilla would recognize that she let her robe slip off. She closed her eyes and inhaled deeply. The Italian song he sang for her suddenly cropped up in her mind, though she didn't know why. Maybe it was the way he sang it with such feeling, feeling she now experienced. It made her innards tremble.
But time would not stand still forever. Miki saw Godzilla visibly gulp. His eyes slowly traced her body. They were like lasers caressing her chest, stomach and thighs. He blinked, slowly, and let out his breath. "You are beautiful."
She blushed and nodded her thanks. "What should I do on the bed?"
Miki looked to the left. A red rose sat all by its lonesome in a vase on his dresser. She snatched it up, inhaled its lovely scent and sat down on the bed, holding the flower close to her face. In that same instant the shutter began to click. He didn't shout instructions at her, didn't tell her to smile, didn't demand anything. After a few seconds Miki relaxed and leaned back on her elbows, her eyes still on the rose. Then she looked up at Godzilla. "Is the lighting okay?"
Godzilla clicked away, smiling. He wasn't ogling her at all, his gaze always focused on her face. "It's perfect."
She laid back completely on the bed. His soft black sheets hugged her form. Curling up and running her hand over the cotton comforter was impossible not to do. She felt so comfortable.
"Oh, hold that." Godzilla climbed up to stand on the bed above her. He pointed the camera straight down and snapped away. There was something extremely powerful about seeing him above her that way. Miki felt time lay down around her like a lover. Only her, Godzilla and the camera seemed to exist. She held the rose to her cheek as she gazed up into the lens with longing in her eyes. Her heart was pounding and she forced herself to take slow, deep breaths. A rosy flush colored her cheeks when Godzilla bent to get a close up. Then he climbed off the bed and knelt to capture her from the side. She clutched the rose to her chest and smiled softly.
"Can you take pictures remotely with that thing?"
Godzilla straightened slowly. He set the camera back onto the tripod and reached for the little remote on the dresser. "Of course. Why?"
Miki held her hand out to him. She was quivering from the emotional swirl bombarding her. "Come here." She stood up and pulled him over to her. "Take some photos with me."
He sagged, took a deep breath and nodded his head. "Why, though?"
"So I can show you what I see when I look at you." Miki replied softly, staring up into his eyes. She cupped his cheek and felt the muscles in the corner of his mouth tremble under her fingers. Reaching into his other hand, she pressed the button on the remote and the camera clicked. She leaned against his chest with her cheek on his shoulder. He let her take the remote and rested his hands flat on her back, holding her in a careful embrace. His heart raced, matching the pace of her own.
"Miki..." Godzilla whispered.
"I-I want to kiss you right now...but I--"
Miki tilted her head back and felt his breath puff against her face. They were so close together, pressed chest to chest as bare as God made them. He wasn't alone in his desire--she would have given anything to kiss him, too.
All at once, her stomach felt hot and heavy. The hand she'd laid on his cheek slid around to the front of his snout. He leaned into her touch and gazed at her with utter devotion. Her heart broke for him when she realized what she'd been doing to him by taking off her clothes. Underneath it all, he was still male. She looked into his eyes and saw a turbulent ocean pounded by storms. And somewhere in it, drowning, was a soul so...so...human.
"It's okay," Miki whispered. She slid away and reclined once more on the mattress, offering herself completely to him. Godzilla followed as if pulled by an invisible force, his eyes never leaving hers. Miki pressed the shutter button one more time before setting the remote aside.
"Miki..." he gasped, pulling back, "we...can't...we--aren't..."
"I don't care." Miki said. She touched his face again. Somehow, they would find a way around their differences. "Please, don't stop."
Sunlight streamed through the bay window to illuminate two figures covered by black blankets. The rectangle of light tracked across a gray snout and locks of dark hair. Miki stirred when the sunlight hit her face. Her makeup had smeared all around her eyes and her hair was a mess. She turned over to see Godzilla still sound asleep. He was smiling and his eyeballs moved under his closed lids as he dreamed. When awake, he looked fierce. While sleeping...he appeared utterly peaceful.
Miki slid from between the sheets and entered the bathroom. She needed to wash her face and take a shower before the makeup made her break out in zits.
Godzilla's eyes opened right after the door closed. He heard the shower start and jerked up to sit in the rectangle of sunlight, looking at his hands. "What?" he blinked and closed his fists. "Oh, come on...Mothra...I love her! Why is the spell still in effect?"
"She has to realize how much she loves you," said a tiny voice.
Godzilla's head snapped up towards his windowsill. A tiny, doll-like Asian woman in an elaborately beaded red gown was smiling up at him. She looked to the side and a woman in a blue dress similar to her own stepped into view. They joined hands. Bright sunlight made their jewelry glitter. The girl in blue spoke, "The spell will not break until she confesses her love to you."
"Come on!" Godzilla growled, "what we did last night is a damn big confession!"
"That was an action," whispered the figure in red. "You will know it when she truly confesses her love. Be patient and do not press the issue with her. She must confess willingly."
Godzilla held his head in his hands. In the time it took him to lower his eyes, the tiny figures vanished in a rainbow shimmer. He smashed his fist down on the sill where they'd been. Okay, calm down G-man. Don't ruin this when you're this close. Talking to himself helped him control his temper. Godzilla knew why his temper was shorter than usual...he hadn't consumed any radiation in almost a month. He had to get more soon or he WOULD become an animal, and he could not risk hurting Miki. Silently, he prayed he could hold off until after sunset. His mind quickly switched gears to last night. The camera! He grabbed it and headed downstairs to load the photos onto his laptop.
Miki's pictures all came out fantastic. She had a lovely body, slightly athletic and perfectly in proportion for her size. Godzilla was quite taken with how her brown eyes showed maturity beyond her years. They gave the impression of an old soul in a young body. Even though she was completely nude, he wanted to focus on her eyes and how her fingers gently touched the soft rose. And the photos he took standing over her...Godzilla caught his breath. He could not stop staring at her smile. She looked so playful, innocent and yet so sensual.
Then he came to the photos of them together. Godzilla hated seeing his own image and wanted to just crop himself right out of every picture. He put his finger on the mouse pad and prepared to do just that, but a flashback from the previous night stopped him.
"Take some photos with me."
He sagged, took a deep breath and nodded his head. "Why, though?"
"So I can show you what I see when I look at you."
Godzilla's clawed finger lifted up away from the keyboard. He saw himself looking down at Miki with complete reverence. He could see how much he loved her. It really showed in the image where she'd rested her cheek against his shoulder. There he was, this hideous, terrifying beast, and she had let him hold her naked in his arms. He'd laid his chin on the top of her head in that shot. His hands rested flat against her back, protecting her from the cold. Miki was pressed completely against him, her face tender even though her eyes were closed. She clutched at his arms as if afraid something might rip him out of her life at any moment.
Godzilla felt his heart melt again at the last frame. There he was, on his hands and knees on top of her, and she looked up at him with utter trust. Him, the most feared creature on the planet, was an angel in her eyes.
An entire song wrote itself in his head. Just...bang, it was there. He pulled up Word to type in the lyrics, saved it and went back to Paintshop Pro.
Godzilla flipped to the photo of them hugging. A little airbrushing protected Miki's modesty by adding a strategically placed shadow over her exposed breast. He carefully painted the background black to cover up the bedroom. Then he cropped the photo so Miki was in the center. All Godzilla wanted seen of himself was his shoulder, arm and chest. The background coloring kind of disguised his form a little. If anything somebody might just think it was a male model in a monster suit. He just didn't want his face or his distinctive dorsal plates in the shot. That would reveal too much.
That urge to binge on radiation came flooding back to the surface. He reached across the table for a box of cigarettes and fumbled with the crystal tabletop lighter. Ten minutes and three cigarettes later, he felt a little calmer. Nicotine had that effect. He snuffed his last smoke out in the little green ash tray and pushed it aside. His eyes flicked sideways when the grandfather clock in the living room chimed the hour. It was ten in the morning. He got up off the chair to prepare breakfast. While he cracked eggs over the frying pan, he wondered to himself, Does Miki regret last night? I don't...but does she?
I hope he doesn't think last night was a mistake, Miki thought as she shut off the shower. Steam filled the white shower and fogged up the clear curtain. It suddenly occurred to her that Godzilla wasn't human. She hadn't pondered it at all last night--it was easy to close her eyes and see with her body, her heart, and not fully notice the rough flesh and jagged teeth.
But am I ready for the kind of life I'll lead if I stay with him?
That thought gave her pause. She slowly drew the shower curtain aside and reached for a towel. Cold air rushed in, causing goose bumps to break out all over her skin. Miki hurriedly wrapped the towel around herself and dried off.
I'll probably be away a lot if my career picks up. And then there's the world--how would I tell people that I'm taken, but can't talk about it? I don't know if I can deal with the questions. I could lie and bring some handsome guy around...no, wait, that wouldn't last long if someone asked him to sing. Damn, I wish this had a simpler answer! Frowning, Miki flipped her head down to towel out her hair. He was so good to me last night when he--
"Miki?" Godzilla knocked gently on the door.
She stood up, startled, and spots danced before her eyes. It took a few seconds for the blood to get to her head. "Oh! I'm still here."
"Okay. No rush. I'm just here to tell you breakfast is ready. I've got your pictures, too. They're..." a smile came into his voice, "beautiful."
Miki found it impossible not to smile as well. "I'll be down in a few minutes." She heard Godzilla's slapping footsteps move away As soon as he was out the door, she hurried to her own room for some deodorant, her clothes and her hair dryer. Exactly ten minutes later, she was dining on toast and orange slices while Godzilla pulled up her photos.
They were the most awesome photos she had ever done. Miki had never seen herself look so real. Rarely did she ever look at her own portfolio and see beyond the makeup and clothes. She saw herself the way Godzilla looked at her...and she was beautiful. Her eyes were deep, dark, yet warm. The nudity in the picture wasn't just her body...it was her soul, too. Bared completely to the world.
"Tell me you airbrushed these..."
"Not one bit." said Godzilla. "Ready to see my pick for the cover?"
Godzilla clicked a button and the photo came up. Miki saw herself leaning on Godzilla's chest, held gently in his arms. He had airbrushed out the bedroom and cropped himself out so that only his arms and chest were visible. A strategically placed shadow gave her modesty without diminishing the picture.
"It's awesome. I love it!" Miki leaned over and wrapped her arms around his neck, hugging him. As she felt his large hand come up to touch her wrists, she thought to herself, Why do you have to be so wonderful? Why does this have to be such a hard decision? My career...or my happiness?
"Miki...I'm going to have to go out tonight. Better not leave the house after the sun goes down. It won't be safe."
She sagged against him. Her eyes wandered to the three crumpled cigarette butts in the ash tray. Godzilla only smoked when he needed radiation, and the more butts in the tray, the worse his need. "Where are you going to go?"
"Probably the Tokai plant. It's the most easily accessible and I won't cause as much damage." He stabbed a piece of sausage on his fork, took it in his teeth and swallowed it whole. Then he lit a fourth cigarette and the stinging smell of smoke surrounded him. "If the JSDF would just leave me alone, they'd realize I'm not after their precious city. Then they blame ME for the damage their own weapons do to buildings and streets! It's ridiculous."
Miki wrinkled her nose, "You should just stand up straight one day and tell them to stop."
Godzilla shook his head and muttered, "The generals would probably **** in their pants if I started talking to them." He switched to his email account and started opening some fan emails. One of them had the subject line: Hello from Monica in Texas! and inside was a photo of a woman exposing her large breasts. "Gads!" Godzilla put a hand over the screen and burst out laughing when Miki gasped. "Sorry, Miki, sometimes I get these." He blew smoke out through his nostrils, clutched the cigarette in the corner of his mouth with his teeth and put his hands on the keyboard.
Miki snickered, standing up again. "I'm surprised you don't get panties in the mail."
"That's why I have a P.O. box for fan mail. Those huge bags of mail I get every month are from that. I get so many love letters and pictures and birthday cards."
"It doesn't surprise me at all. Hey, when is your birthday anyway?"
Godzilla blew out a last smoke puff and added another butt to the pile. "November the third."
"Oh." She bit into her buttered toast, feeling bad that she didn't know about it sooner, "At least they love you for your music. They don't even know what you look like--are you answering that email?"
"Sure! Why not?"
Miki rolled her eyes and read over Godzilla's shoulder. "'Thanks for sharing, I hope you have a nice day.' Isn't that a little...I dunno...impersonal?"
"I don't want to encourage her. While I do appreciate the view, I don't even know this lady. Besides, yours are cuter anyway."
Heat rushed to Miki's cheeks. Covering her face, she giggled and carried her dishes to the sink to be washed. She heard Godzilla light another cigarette. Five in less than thirty minutes...not good. The smell made her cough a bit. Her smile dropped once her back was to Godzilla. It always worried her when he attacked a city. She hated how he had to hurt people to protect his own sanity. But he doesn't hurt people on purpose, she reminded herself, I wish there was a better way. What if one day they come up with a weapon that seriously hurts him?
"I can't wait." Godzilla said. "I've checked the news. There's nothing dangerous--going on." His voice shook. Miki turned around to find him gripping the table and trembling. "Miki, p-please...forgive me for what I have to do."
"Just...go. It's okay. I'll clean up here." Miki replied, trying her hardest to sound flippant about it. Yet another thing to consider...do I want to spend my life with someone who damages cities to hold onto his sanity? She walked mechanically to the door to watch Godzilla leave. He looked both ways before charging across the beach and diving into the waves. The change was instantaneous--he passed a large rock jutting from the water and his jagged spines became suddenly huge. Miki stood by the door until Godzilla disappeared into the distance.
Last edited by Cyndi; June 22nd, 2010 at 12:23 PM.
Re: Beauty and the Beast
June 22nd, 2010, 04:40 AM
Re: Beauty and the Beast
10. Smoke on the Horizon
Two Japanese men in military uniforms gathered around a small wooden table. Resting on the table was a poster with the schematics of a complex molecule. The words "Weapon X" were written above the molecule in Kanji. Smaller labels named the various atoms in the molecule.
Everyone in the room had signed a contract stating that they would not release what they saw or heard here to the public. Not even the press knew of what they were about to discuss.
"Gentlemen," began a small, elderly woman in a lab coat. She bowed from the doorway before walking in and went right to business. "Explosives have no effect on Godzilla because his skin is practically impenetrable by conventional weaponry. However, one lucky shot to the mouth gave us a tissue sample. Observe." She turned to a high definition television screen and clicked "PLAY" on a DVD player. A rotating DNA helix appeared on the screen. The image stopped rotating and white text appeared to label the different proteins. "This is Godzilla's DNA." Then she clicked a button and another DNA strand appeared next to Godzilla's. "And this is human DNA."
Gasps and chatter erupted amidst the two military men. The youngest one, whose name-tag read Kazuma Ito, raised his hand. "Dr. Takeshi, is this a joke? Godzilla's DNA is identical to the human DNA!"
"We tested it several times. That is Godzilla's genetic makeup you're seeing onscreen." Dr. Takeshi smiled at the handsome young man. "I can assure you that this is no joke."
"A mutant dinosaur with human DNA...it doesn't make sense." Kazuma sank back into his seat, red-faced. "Why are you showing this to us?"
"Glad you asked. With this DNA, a geneticist in Saradia by the name if Rifat Salarjung has come up with this." Dr. Takeshi advanced the DVD and the complex molecule on the poster appeared in color on the screen. "A virus attuned specifically to Godzilla's DNA, delivered by aerosol so he breathes it straight into his lungs. Once inhaled, the virus will attack his lungs until they fail. Because the virus is made with his own genes, his body won't recognize it as a threat until the virus has already taken hold. The violent reaction of his own immune system will kill him." She faced the three men again, "It is estimated that he'll be dead within three to five months of being infected."
The senior officer, an older man named Hikaru Bessho, raised his hand. He was shaved bald and had a rather large mole on the left side of his jaw. "Doctor, is it safe to release this virus into the atmosphere?"
"Perfectly safe. Even if the general population breathes it in, the worst they'll get is cold symptoms. Their bodies will be able to fight off the pathogen. Only Godzilla will suffer the fatal effects."
Kazuma ran a hand over his short brown hair. "How will the virus be delivered to his location?"
At this, Hikaru turned to the younger man. "Godzilla never attacks civilian aircraft. Therefore, a remote controlled crop dusting plane will spray the payload directly in his face. Godzilla shouldn't even notice it until it dives, and by then he will inhale the virus."
"That will really piss him off."
"Yes," Hikaru replied, narrowing his eyes.
"We are also keeping this a secret. Even after the virus is deployed, we're telling the press it's a remote plane whose onboard computer experienced a flight error. The plane is programmed to crash into the ocean after making its delivery." Dr. Takeshi turned off the TV and DVD. "None of us want terrorists to find this formula and mutate it to contaminate humans. Even the doctor in Saradia destroyed his notes after sending them to us. We will do the same after this meeting is over."
Kazuma stood up, "I guess we--"
A woman burst through the door. "Godzilla just attacked the Tokai plant! He's consuming the reactor!"
"****!" Hikaru jumped to his feet. He looked to his colleagues. "Prepare Weapon X for deployment."
Hideo wiped the salty sweat from his brow and watched the coastline. He'd just filled his nets to the brim with fish and he didn't want anything to happen to his catch. The waters were rough, making his small boat rock. He turned to shout instructions when he noticed Wagura staring open-mouthed to the north.
Turning, Hideo squinted in the direction of the Tokai plant, which was just a dim shape in the fading twilight. The smoke parted to briefly reveal Godzilla. He held the reactor in his claws, his face like a heroin addict giving himself a fix. Blue light danced up and down his jagged dorsal fins. Hideo saw Godzilla's mouth curl up into a satisfied grin that bared his huge fangs.
"We should get out of here." Wagura tugged on Hideo's arm. "It won't be safe when the military shows up!"
Hideo shrugged Wagura's hand off. "Why isn't the military there already? Last time this happened, they had tanks, masers and airplanes going after him. Why not now?"
"I dunno." Wagura scratched his head. "Let's secure the lines and get out of here anyway."
Nodding, Hideo rushed to help Wagura tie the nets more securely to the sides of the boat. He heard an engine and looked up as a crop duster sailed over their boat. His eyes went to Godzilla. The monster was still enjoying the reactor. Hideo watched the small craft suddenly dive and spray a yellow mist straight in Godzilla's face. Before Godzilla reacted, the plane turned back the way it came.
Godzilla's lifeless white eyes flew open.
Wagura screamed, "Dammit! Hideo, GO! GO!"
Hideo jammed the boat into motion. Godzilla's roar of anguish drowned out the engines, but Hideo didn't dare look backwards. In his rear view mirror, he saw the blue glow in Godzilla's throat just a split second before his heat ray slammed into the tiny airplane. The crop duster exploded in an orange fireball. Debris rained into the ocean a mere ten feet from the fishing boat. Godzilla stomped into the water, his fangs bared in a horrible snarl. Then he noticed the boat and stopped.
"He...he's...he's going to attack us!" screamed Wagura. He was so terrified that his knees buckled and he fainted.
Godzilla came even closer to the boat. He looked straight at Hideo and growled, "Get out before they send subs." Then he dove and his enormous, jagged dorsal spines passed on either side of the boat.
Wasting no time, Hideo jerked the steering wheel and sped to shore. He prayed that Miki was all right.
The house was incredibly lonely. Miki made up for it by doing laundry, washing dishes and setting up a nice steak dinner for when Godzilla got back. She knew how horrible he always felt about his rampages. Sometimes he'd grab the big bottle of vodka he kept in a cabinet and drink until he was shaking and crying. Perhaps a good meal would help Godzilla avoid the liquor altogether. It couldn't be good for him. She put one of his albums on the stereo while she cooked. The sound of Godzilla's singing made the home feel less empty.
Having the house to herself gave Miki a lot of time to think. Godzilla made her feel things she never felt before. Her face flushed as she remembered how gentle he was the night before. He knew exactly what he was doing and she was the one who didn't know what to do. Everything happened so fast. Miki always thought her first time would be painful and without fulfillment. Last night hadn't been like that at all. Godzilla was so gentle with her that she only felt pain for a few seconds when he...then it all dissolved into the careful pushing and pulling that tumbled into a feeling achieved only when two spirits were separated by the flesh holding them to their bodies. He kept his nose pressed to her hair the entire time, not letting her see his face. She'd closed her eyes and just listened to him--from his heavy breathing to the quiet whimper of completion--and not once did he sound like anything other than a human being.
Miki gritted her teeth and poured A1 sauce all over the steak on the pan. Its simmering, boiling surface reminded Miki of her turmoil. Sometimes she honestly forgot what Godzilla was, especially last night, and when she looked again and remembered--it hurt. She felt guilty when she saw his face immediately after and for one second didn't know whether to run away in shame or stay in his arms. That's what people would say if they knew what she had done. That it was shameful because she did it with a non-human. She'd be labeled as a freak. Then she found herself backpedaling that thought. The being she shared a bed with last night was another person altogether. She slept with G, the brilliant singer and songwriter...not the monster mankind knew as Godzilla.
Claws scraped on the doorstep. Miki heard the door creak open and Godzilla came up behind her. He sang the song playing on the stereo gently in her ear. She swallowed hard. Why did he have to be so wonderful?
"I smell food," Godzilla's silky voice grazed her ear.
"I'm cooking," Miki replied, glancing over her shoulder. "Steaks, your favorite."
His scaly lips nuzzled her earlobe, a sensation bordering on unpleasant that she was slowly getting used to. In time, she knew it probably wouldn't phase her.
"Awesome. Smells like you're almost done, too. I better hurry up and shower. I'm covered in sand."
Miki glanced up when he moved away, trailing footprints and sand across the house. His silver-white dorsal spines clattered together, making a sound like two elks fighting as he jogged up the stairs. When had the sight of him walking around start seeming so normal? When did his touch stop feeling alien? When did his voice make her pulse leap and her stomach itch? When did his musical laugh start filling her with joy? When did she stop seeing him as a monster?
Miki flipped the steak over and covered the top side in A1 sauce. Messy, but he loved his steaks drowned in the stuff, claiming that cooking it in the sauce cooked the flavor into the meat. Just remembering how he talked about cooking made Miki's throat knot up. She was falling in love with Godzilla--and it scared her. She didn't know whether to be elated or ashamed.
He was a great person...wonderful, talented, funny, sweet and caring...everything she looked for in a man. Just one tiny problem- he wasn't human. And that ruined everything, even prospects of marriage and children. The world would never understand. She'd have to spend her life on this island, away from the world. What about her future and her career? How would she explain this situation? Either she had to stay here and never model seriously, or break it off before she fell too far and move forward in her life. Both choices had benefits, both had risks and both meant somebody had to get hurt.
And I'll crush his happiness if I leave, Miki bit her lip and dished up the steaks and vegetables. I'd crush his heart, too. I know from last night that he's in love with me. I don't want to hurt him. Not after he's been so good to me.
Godzilla came back downstairs, the smell of seawater washed from his gray hide. He politely pulled Miki's chair out for her and seated her before he sat down himself. "This looks so good. I'm starved."
"Dig in," said Miki, smiling. "I cooked it in A1 sauce."
"Just how I like it." He cut a piece and shoved it into his mouth, swallowing without even chewing. "Mmm...delicious. Guess I'll have to pay you back with that sukiyaki you love." He proceeded to demolish his entire steak before Miki even ate half of hers.
She ate slowly, taking in the smell of the meat. The embarrassed look he shot at her half-eaten food made her giggle. "You seem happy. What happened out there?"
"Hm? Oh! It was weird...nobody attacked me. All I got was a screwy unmanned crop duster buzzing my face. I didn't hurt anybody today, Miki. It's the first time in a long while since I've gotten a fix without killing people." Godzilla licked the sauce off his fork and set it down. "Maybe they finally realized it costs less to just let me take the plant and fix it when I leave."
"Maybe." Miki finished her steak and stood up to do the dishes. Steam rose to dampen her face.
Godzilla glanced over when the next track on his CD started. "I feel like dancing."
She turned, drying her hands on the checkered dish towel. "I don't dance very well--"
"Aw, come on. I'll show you." He led her into the living room and showed her how to position her hands. Placing her right hand in his left and putting her left hand on his hip, he reached around to rest his claws on her back. "Now just feel the pulse of the music...now...just take a little half step back with your right foot while my left comes forward." He led her into a box step that had them in a half-turn by the third beat, "One, two, three...see?"
Miki glanced down at her feet while she followed his instructions. Godzilla's huge toes were going to be easy targets to step on. She blushed. "I'm going to step all over your toes."
He laughed in her ear. "You won't hurt my feet. Your one hundred and ten pounds against my seven-eighty. Don't worry about it."
"You're lucky I'm not wearing stiletto heels, big guy." Miki teased him. She followed his steps until the motions became natural. The music seemed to flow from her heels to her toes, causing her and Godzilla to rise and fall as they swept around the room. I'm ballroom dancing, she realized as the room spun around in ribbons of color. It felt like a merry-go-round with the horses that moved gently up and down. Godzilla never stepped on her feet once.
They waltzed for awhile, lost in the music. Godzilla laid his chin on the top of her head like they were made to fit together that way.
"Solo por ti
En la infinidad
Contigo la eternidad
Solo por ti..."
The guilt returned to Miki's head like a weight pressing into her brow. She rested her head on his shoulder. If she wanted to stop falling, she had to stop doing things like this. "What's this song mean? Do you speak Spanish?"
"Not fluently...but I do my research." He began to whisper into her ear, "The chorus translates into 'Only for you, I would walk into infinity. I would face eternity with you. Only for you.'"
"That sounds so sad." Tears pricked in the corners of her eyes. She pressed her face against his shoulder so he wouldn't notice her crying, but the tears that dripped onto his ridged skin gave her away. He stopped dancing and moved her away from him.
"Miki, are you okay? What's wrong?"
"Oh, God," Miki wiped at her eyes and shook her head, embarrassed. "I--I think I'm just a little hormonal or something. You know how I get when that time of the month is coming..."
"Yeah. It's okay." He brushed another of her tears away with his thumb. "By the way, I saw your father on my way back. He had a full load of fish on his boat."
Her eyes lit up. "Really? Oh! He hasn't had good fishing in a long time. This should help him pay rent for a few months."
"If he ever needs it, I can always send him some money. Or maybe--" Godzilla parted his lips to say something else, but ended up yawning instead. He covered his snout with one hand. "Sorry...I guess I still haven't caught up on my sleep."
"Go to bed, then. I can finish the dishes." Miki stepped back out of his arms, smiling to show she wasn't offended. "It's all right with me. I know what it's like to run thirty straight hours without sleep. It's no fun."
"You're too kind." He grinned, flashing his fangs. "Oh! Don't worry about the mud I tracked everywhere. I'll clean that up myself."
"Sure." She patted his cheek, "Whatever you want."
His gaze softened. "Good night, Miki. See you in the morning."
Godzilla nuzzled her shoulder and headed for the stairs. Miki shut off the stereo and headed into the kitchen to finish washing dishes. Then she crashed on the couch to watch some TV. There was nothing good on any channel except for a documentary about Godzilla. It was so wrong. They believed he was an incredibly smart animal...if only people knew his intelligence was on par with a human's. And the mutation...Miki speculated it probably advanced his brain. How else could he live like a human, talk and sing with that beautiful voice of his?
Miki shut off the TV and went upstairs. Pausing at Godzilla's door, she gazed inside at his sleeping face. Godzilla was on his stomach, his face turned to her. He appeared to be smiling in his sleep. Miki closed his door and headed for her own room.
Godzilla dreamed vividly all throughout the night. Mostly he dreamed of being human again. Doing something simple as brushing his hair brought him such joy...he really did miss his dark, wavy curls and pale skin. However, there came a point where he looked in the mirror and his face morphed into his hideous monster form. He smashed the mirror. The glass shattered silently, cutting into his throat.
Gasping, Godzilla jerked awake, but the pain was still there. His entire throat hurt as if he just swallowed a bunch of glass. He staggered into the bathroom and lapped some water directly from the tap. Not even water quelled the pain. Godzilla frowned and snagged the handheld mirror Miki forgot. He opened his mouth wide. The back of his throat was blood red instead of pink.
"Oh! You're up." Miki peeked around the bathroom doorway. She had her hair pulled up in a cute bun with white hair sticks. "I was just coming to check on you."
"I just got up." Godzilla's voice came out slightly husky. "Uh, best not to get close to me. I think I'm catching a cold."
She made a face. "I thought you didn't get sick."
"I don't get sick easily." He groaned and rubbed at his Adam's apple, which was responsible for his human voice. Another set of vocal folds near his chest allowed him to purr, roar and growl. Even those felt a little sore. "But I still can. Every so often I get colds. Ow...damn my throat really hurts!"
"I'll make you some hot lemon tea." Miki said. She smiled over her shoulder, "I heard singers use it."
Godzilla grinned, "You've done your homework."
She giggled and disappeared downstairs. A couple minutes later, she returned carrying a huge steaming mug of tea. It smelled of lemon and...honey. "My mom used to put honey in lemon tea when I caught colds. Just a little though."
"I've never heard you talk about your mother before."
"She...was a smart lady. She died because of MS when I was ten."
He blinked, "MS as in Multiple Sclerosis?"
"No, it's okay." She touched his arm.
He tried to recoil, "I don't want to get you sick."
Miki's hand held firmly to his bicep. "I had a cold last month anyway, so I doubt I'll catch yours."
"If you say so," Godzilla let her lean on him and sipped from the mug. As long as he kept his teeth closed and bit the lip of the cup, he could take sips just like anybody else. The heat soothed his throat better than cold water. "Wow, this is probably my first cold bug in about five years."
"I wish I could go that long between colds. A couple years ago, I caught three in the same month. Not fun."
"Even when you're sick--" He grinned and took another sip. "--you still look hot."
"Flatterer." Miki blushed when she took his empty mug. "I'll get more. You take it easy, okay?"
Last edited by Cyndi; June 22nd, 2010 at 12:23 PM.
Re: Beauty and the Beast
June 22nd, 2010, 04:41 AM
Re: Beauty and the Beast
11. Life's Winding Roads
Godzilla told Miki he'd take it easy, but he had an album to produce. With a steady flow of tea he could still sing perfectly...and so he did. Over the next two weeks, he mixed a song and spent hours working on it in the recording booth. The music he had in his hand just happened to be the song he wrote while looking at Miki's beautiful pictures. This music was intense, hard violins, piano and drums. It called for a triple forte climax. Godzilla stood closer to the recording microphone than usual to try and save his voice.
"I am not a hero," he gradually began his crescendo, "I am not an angel. I am just a man! A man who's trying to love her--unlike any other. In her eyes I am..."
The second Godzilla finished recording, he started to cough.
"I thought I told you to take it easy!" Miki called into the garage.
"I am! I'm only doing one song today!" Godzilla replied, muffled by the door. He went right back to coughing. It sounded like he was hacking up a lung. "Dammit, I hate coughing."
"If you hadn't sung--"
The door opened and Godzilla walked out, wiping his mouth with a paper towel. "Miki, I really appreciate your concern, but I do have to finish this album."
She shot him a somewhat icy glare. Men were all the same! Unless they were dying, missing a limb or gushing blood, they would NOT quit punishing their bodies. "Nice...you made yourself all hoarse."
"Oh, good, then I can sing bass."
"Nooooo more singing for you today. Don't make me tape your mouth shut."
Godzilla flopped down on the couch next to her. He chuckled, trying to read the Elle magazine she was reading. "Yes, mother. I'll behave." He eyeballed the page again, "Handbags, hm? I like..." he moved his claw across the page to an ugly handbag that appeared made from several patches of fabric. "...that one. It goes with my leopard print skirt."
Miki smacked his arm with the magazine and laughed.
On TV, a newscast about Godzilla's most recent attack on Tokyo popped up on screen. They ran a story about how a crop duster's guidance system malfunctioned and caused it to drop its pesticide improperly. There was also speculation about why Godzilla didn't go further into the city, and one scientist volunteered that Godzilla only wanted the reactor. He even said that feeding him radioactive materials in a more rural area might mean less damage for the city.
Sneering, Godzilla changed the channel. King Kong was on. He sat back and watched it for a few moments.
"Are you okay?"
"Not really," he said sullenly, frowning. "They talk about me like I'm some animal. I want to just stand up and say 'stop!', but that would make me even more of a freak in their eyes." He glanced at the magazine again. "I need a handbag to look stylish when I go out to eat. Ooh! I know! I'll carry a Miki handbag!"
"A 'Miki' handbag?" Miki raised an eyebrow.
"Yeah!" Godzilla leaned over to pick Miki up on one arm like a child. "You're so stylish. I could start a new fad. Everybody will want a Miki."
"Hey!" She burst out laughing and kicked her feet. "Will I go with your leopard print skirt?"
"Oh, no, no, no. You...I'm saving you for my fur coat."
"I hope it's pink!" Miki laughed so hard that she snorted. The unfeminine sound embarrassed her. It also made Godzilla guffaw as well. They collapsed onto the couch together in helpless laughter.
I guess it's impossible to control one's heart, Miki thought, resting her head on Godzilla's chest. His heartbeat thumped strongly in her ear. She felt him draw his claws gently through her hair. Dammit, I'm so happy here...it seems like no matter what choice I make, I'll always be missing something! I hate this!
Suddenly, Miki gasped and sat up. "Oh! Crap! I'm supposed to meet Thomas to go over my prints! Crap!"
"That mermaid photoshoot."
"Oh!" he sat up as well, "When do you have to be there?"
"Now!" Miki scrambled upstairs to put on decent clothes, apply makeup and straighten her hair. She could hear Godzilla coughing again downstairs. Maybe I'll pick up some cough medicine on my way back. It may not help, but I feel like I should do something. He sat with me when I was sick. Miki sighed and put her mascara brush back into the tube. She gave her curly bangs one more flip before she bounded down the stairs. "Okay, Godzilla. I'll be right back."
He was still coughing when she closed the door.
Miki dialed her cell phone as she charged across the beach. "Thomas! This is Miki. I'm so sorry! I got confused about the time, but I'm on my way right now."
"You don't have to come down. The pictures..." Thomas made a smacking sound with his lips, "...they're great. It's the date you had with Aleron last week that I have a problem with."
The door opened and Miki saw Godzilla stick his head out. She frowned, "What about that date?"
"He said you treated him rudely and walked out."
"WHAT?" Miki's eyes widened and a knot of rage tightened her stomach. "He was the one talking about himself like he was God's gift to this earth. He made improper advances on me, Thomas! I don't know what kind of girl he thinks I am, but I wasn't about to sit there and let him talk to me that way and then open my legs for him."
"And because of that, he doesn't want to work for our label anymore!" roared Thomas. "Do you have any idea how expensive it was to get him here?"
"So you expected me to sit there and smile while he basically treated me like a walking blow up doll?"
"I expected you to treat him with respect."
"He didn't give me any!" Miki cried, tears welling in her eyes.
"I don't know what's happened to you, Miki. You used to go along with everything. I guess we're done then. Don't expect me to call you anymore for anything, okay? Bye." Thomas hung up and the line went dead, leaving Miki to gape at a dial tone. She closed her phone and bolted back into the house. Godzilla called her name. She just ignored him and ran up to the bathroom to scrub off her makeup.
Godzilla finally caught up to her. "Miki? What happened?"
"That ******* fired me," Miki replied stonily, squinting in the mirror. "He fired me because I walked out on my date with Aleron. I guess I'm not supposed to stand up for myself or my friends!"
"Screw them. They just lost a great model." Godzilla cleared his throat. "Go to some other company and make Thomas sorry he let you go."
"Godzilla..." she sniffed. He always said sweet things when she felt bad, but right now she didn't want to hear it. Plus, on top of it all her stomach was turning from all the stress. "Can I please be alone? I'm mad right now and I don't want to say anything that might hurt your feelings. Just um, go downstairs and I'll make more tea for you later, okay?"
He arched an eyebrow. "Are you sure?"
"Yes. I think I just need to take a nap or something." She wiped her eyes. The second Godzilla left, she burst into tears.
A soft heartbeat sound and piano chords filtered into Godzilla's earphones. He said he wouldn't sing anymore today, but Miki sparked his inspiration again. If he wanted to nail a song, he had to sing it while he felt it. And he felt it now.
"Don't give up...it's just the weight of the world. When your heart's heavy I, I will lift it for you. Don't give up...because you want to be heard. If silence keeps you I, I will break it for you..." Flashes of the photoshoot with Miki rolled across his mind like a slide show. Her soft skin, her eyes and her beauty. He sang as if she stood right there. His knees bent and the pain in his throat became unbearable. He was so focused on expressing his love at the top of his voice that his pain didn't matter.
Godzilla gasped as he released the last note. He'd been so into the song that he almost forgot it was over. He let the violins fade, stopped the CD and played it back. Even though it meant he couldn't talk much for the rest of the day...it was worth it. His album was complete and this song became the exclamation point. If only he felt well enough to enjoy it. Nausea came onto him in waves. His head was throbbing and a few minutes with a thermometer confirmed that he did indeed have a fever.
Maybe he overdid it a little...resting a while would help the fever go away. The pulsing pain in his head worsened. He trudged slowly to the fridge for a cold bottle of water. Blackness pricked at the edges of his vision and his stomach lurched painfully upward. He turned towards the bathroom, but the fever assaulted him so suddenly that his knees became jelly. With no other choice, Godzilla fell to his knees to throw up in the garbage bin in the corner. Once the pressure was off he crawled towards the bathroom, thinking he could finish in the toilet. Halfway there, he heaved again on the living room floor.
Water gurgled down the drain as Miki finished washing the evidence of crying off her face. She shut the sink off in time to hear a horrible choking sound. That didn't sound right! She ran to the top of the stairs. Godzilla was on his knees in the middle of the living room. His sides heaved and he vomited into the already growing puddle between his hands.
"Godzilla!" Miki dashed down the stairs. Being the daughter of a fisherman and having seen many disgusting things, Miki wasn't bothered by the sight or smell of the vomit. She could see corn, carrots and fish bones--stuff Godzilla ate the night before. "Don't move." she raced into the kitchen for the trash bin, only to find Godzilla already used it. Grabbing it anyway, she hurried back and get it under his face in time for him to puke one last time.
"Oh, Miki...I'm so sorry..." Godzilla gagged and dry heaved. "I better clean--"
"You park your butt on the couch. I'll clean up. C'mon," Miki slipped an arm under his chest and helped him stand up. He wobbled on his feet and collapsed facedown onto the couch. "You're burning up!" she gasped. "You should have listened to me...I told you that exerting yourself would make you worse."
"It all happened in seconds." Godzilla covered his eyes with a bone pillow. "Don't yell...head hurts..."
Rolling her eyes, Miki walked out into the scenic back yard to wash out the garbage bin. Then she spread paper towels over the puke puddle to soak it up and wiped it away. Godzilla watched all this in amazement. Miki was basically handling his vomit and didn't seem to care.
"Wow...usually people find puke gross."
"Oh," she softened her expression, "Before I started modeling, I used to help my dad clean the fish he caught. It's not much different than puke, so it doesn't bother me. Now if you started to eat it..."
Godzilla picked up the paper towel roll, tore off a piece and used it to wipe his mouth. "Don't worry...I won't." Suddenly, he pushed himself off the couch and staggered into the bathroom. The door slammed. "Oh, my God," Miki heard him moan right before he threw up again. He turned on the sink in a vain attempt to mask the sounds.
Miki moved the trash bin and tugged on the top of the couch. It gave way. Good, it unfolded into a bed. She headed to the upstairs linen closet for clean sheets and an extra pillow. The bed was literally one step away from the bathroom. That turned out to be a very good thing--the door swung open to release a foul odor into the living room. Godzilla hobbled out, holding his stomach. He was paler than normal, like ash, and barely even made it a step to the bed. She helped him lay down, letting him rest his head in her lap while she sat on the edge of the bed.
"I have no idea what's wrong with me," Godzilla moaned. "I was fine ten minutes ago..." he coughed, "and then, BAM, I thought I was going to pass out."
"Whatever it is, it's hitting you hard," Miki stroked his cheek. The heat from his head stung against her thighs. Godzilla could sweat just like a human, and the fact that he wasn't even damp worried her. "Have you taken your temperature?"
"It's a hundred and five."
"A hundred and five?" she gasped.
"Maybe higher now..." he trembled as if cold and cleared his throat.
She scooted away from his head and grabbed the thermometer off the kitchen counter. "How do I...?"
"Just like you do." Godzilla took it and placed it in the corner of his mouth. Miki watched the digital numbers jump. Ninety-nine, one hundred, one hundred and two, one hundred and five. It finally stopped at one hundred and eight point nine.
"This is too high!" she jumped up, panicking. "I'm going to get some ice. Don't move unless it's to use the bathroom."
Godzilla nodded and crawled more to the middle of the mattress, which creaked under his weight. Miki felt her own stomach swimming with nausea as she opened the freezer. Sympathy twinges, she told herself. Focusing on the task at hand helped her quell her unstable stomach. Godzilla always kept a lot of ice packs in the back of his freezer because getting hit with bombs sometimes bruised him, and the ice helped the pain. She snagged five and headed back to Godzilla, placing one pair under his armpits, another pair at his feet and the last one against his head. The cold made him shiver even more violently. His teeth chattered.
"Shh, I know...I know..." Miki tried to soothe him.
He reached over and took her hand. His huge, sausage-like fingers swallowed hers. She grasped the pad of his thumb and rubbed the end of his claw. Then his eyes bulged and he forced himself back into the bathroom. He emerged after several minutes and laid himself on his side across the mattress.
God, what if it's his appendix? Does he even have one? Miki stretched out a hand and lightly petted the back of his neck. "Anything I can do?"
"Make sure the Angels win the Playoffs." Godzilla mumbled.
Miki snickered. At least he was still saying silly things. As long as he remained in good humor it couldn't be too bad. Miki let herself relax a little. Maybe he'd be okay in a few days. "Is there anything else you need? Water, more pillows, the remote?"
He just shook his head at all of her suggestions. "I'm going to sleep it off."
"Yeah..." he gathered the ice packs into a pile and rested his head on them. His eyelids fluttered shut. The congested rasp of his breathing sounded scary. Occasionally, he'd cough. Whatever this bug was...it proved to be more than just a cold.
Last edited by Cyndi; June 22nd, 2010 at 12:23 PM.
Re: Beauty and the Beast
June 22nd, 2010, 04:41 AM
Re: Beauty and the Beast
12. Reaching Deep Within
Deep chiming woke Godzilla from a sound slumber. He looked at the grandfather clock and saw it was barely five in the morning. His head felt better, so he knew right away that his fever went down. He swallowed with a slight flinch.
Ouch...throat's still sore. Damn.
Godzilla startled when he heard a sigh, and turned towards its source. Miki, sound asleep, was curled up in the recliner with a blanket around her shoulders. Had she spent the whole night there, watching over him?
He climbed off the sofa-bed and lumbered into the bathroom. Mouthwash wasn't as good as toothpaste, but it'd keep Miki from suffering through his bad morning breath--an embarrassing fate he considered worse than his atomic ray. The house got stuffy overnight, so he opened the front door to let in the cool sea breeze.
Miki gave a quiet snore. Whatever she dreamed about made her smile a little in her sleep.
As gently as he could, Godzilla scooped Miki up bridal style and carried her upstairs to her room. She must have been tired--she hardly moved once he tucked her into her own bed. The growing morning softened her pretty features and cast shadows across his white eyes. He brushed her bangs off her face and bent over, brushing the tip of his snout against her cheek. Right then, he would've given his life just for human lips to kiss her.
Godzilla's throat began to tickle. He hurried out and into his own bathroom before the cough exploded from his chest. Each spasm hurt. He buried his snout in his hands in attempt to muffle the sound.
Probably a flu virus. Great. Two weeks of coughing and snot. I feel sooooo lucky.
The phone rang downstairs.
Godzilla's eyes widened. Who would call at this hour? He rushed downstairs to the kitchen, and his claws scraped a new gouge in the counter in his haste to pick up the receiver. The caller I.D. showed Hideo's cell phone number.
"Hideo, you better have a good reason to call me at this hour." Godzilla growled.
"H-hello?" The voice on the other end wasn't Hideo's. Too throaty and higher in pitch. "Is Miki there?"
"I'm Wagura, I'm Hideo's friend."
"Nice. Miki's asleep right now." Godzilla sniffled and cleared his throat. "What do you want?"
"There was an accident on the docks. Hideo got hurt pretty bad, and he's in the hospital. He gave me his phone to call you. I'm still in the waiting room and he's still in surgery. He didn't look too good goin' into the ambulance."
"Goji?" Miki's voice filtered into the kitchen. She always called him Goji when she saw him on the phone.
Godzilla whirled to face her, the receiver still held to his ear. He lifted his index finger and said, "She's right here. Hold on."
The look on his face must have given away how bad it was. Miki's hand quivered as she took the phone and moved it to her ear. "Hi...it's Miki."
Godzilla watched the color drain from her features. Her eyes welled over.
"What? When? Is he okay? Which hospital? Sanno...right, I know where it is. Yes." She pressed her other hand against her brow and looked up at Godzilla like a deer caught in headlights. Her lower lip trembled. The sun came through the open front door in time to make her first two tears sparkle. She sat down hard at the table. "Okay...thanks for letting me know. Tell him I love him for me, please? Thank you. Bye, Wagura." She set the phone aside and burst into tears, burying her face in her folded arms.
"I'm...sorry." Godzilla whispered. He wasn't used to this feeling of pity--he felt his throat clutching at the sight of Miki in tears like this. "Uh...is there anything I can, you know, do for you?"
Miki turned towards him, burying her face against his shoulder. Godzilla tensed for a few seconds before laying his hand against the back of her head. He dragged another chair over with his tail, sat down and put his other arm around her. She let him pull her closer into a hug.
"My daddy's hurt." Miki sobbed. "He might be dying and I'm so far away!"
The pangs in Godzilla's throat shot into his eyes. Tears of...sympathy? He swallowed a growl and lowered his head, his eyes closing. No, it wouldn't do to cuss at fate out loud. He was so close to breaking this curse!
...but this wasn't just about him anymore. Miki had needs far more important than his own. Her happiness mattered. What if Hideo was in that hospital, right now, dying?
Godzilla clenched his jaw and tilted his head back. "Miki?"
"Hm?" She rubbed her lower eyelids, which were puffy from her weeping.
Godzilla made himself look at her. He said, "You should be with your dad right now."
"You don't have to keep your part of the deal anymore. I'm...I'm letting you go."
He swore he saw a new sun rising in her eyes. She threw her arms around his neck so tightly that the air rushed from his lungs. Then she ran upstairs to get dressed and pack.
"I can tow you!" Godzilla called up the staircase. "There's a little motor boat somebody left a while back. I always keep it fueled. I can tow you with the rope at least halfway!"
Miki clambered down the stairs in a pink hoodie and jean shorts. She looked like demons were chasing her.
"Thank you so much for this," she panted. "Once I know what's what, I'll call you, okay?"
Godzilla nodded. "Sure."
Several minutes later, he pushed the motor boat past the rock marking the end of his island and dove under the waves. Coughing underwater hurt more than he'd let on. He felt his body grow to its enormous size. The thick rope on the boat looked like a long thread to him.
He surfaced to see Miki holding into the sides of the boat. She looked up when his head rose above the waves.
"Tie the rope to my biggest spine. Don't worry, they're only radioactive when I use my breath. Gimme a pat when you're ready to go."
"You'll feel it?"
"Yeah, if you bang on the side hard enough. I'll snip the line once we get close to those detection buoys."
Miki smiled softly at him. He smiled back before sinking and turning over, his spines lifting the boat slightly off the water. The second he felt Miki tap on his largest plate, he sank lower and surged forward just beneath the waves. He swam deeper than normal, making sure his dorsal spines didn't break the surface.
Godzilla's cough became a severe annoyance. Underwater, he breathed mostly through his skin. Every time he coughed, he sucked water into his windpipe and that made him cough even harder. He finally expelled all the air in his lungs, and swam in silent agony
Miki...please come back to me when this is all over.
Grateful couldn't begin to describe how Miki felt towards Godzilla. She was fully prepared to camp by the phone, and he let her go. But why did it hurt, leaving him behind?
He's sick, my dad is hurt...I wish I could be in two places at once.
She grasped the sides of the boat when it rocked. Her stomach turned over, but thankfully didn't empty itself. The salty sea spray occasionally splashing on her face felt good in the warm morning. When she looked ahead, the sun burned above the horizon, turning the ocean into a rumpled golden sheet. A pod of dolphins played in the swells a short distance away. Miki watched them, smiling.
Suddenly, the boat coasted to a stop and shuddered side to side. Sea water splashed onto Miki's feet when Godzilla's head broke the surface behind her. He gasped like someone freshly resuscitated.
"This is...as far...as I...can take you." Godzilla spoke in spurts. His voice had more growl to it when he was full sized. He hacked and spat off to the side. The ocean churned around him and the boat. Miki realized the sea was so deep here that he had to tread water just like a human.
She reached out, cupping her hand against the outer edge of his snout. "Will you be okay?"
Godzilla's white eyes blinked. He had a third, clear eyelid that glistened with reflections of the water. "It's probably a flu virus. I'll be fine in a week or two. Your dad is in worse shape than I am."
"Are you sure?"
He flinched and nodded, and turned away to cough hard into the sea foam surrounding his neck. "Yeah," his voice croaked out. "Call me."
Miki smiled a little. She balanced herself and leaned over the back of the boat to kiss the tip of his nose. "Thank you."
Godzilla quirked his reptilian lips into a smile, flashing his gigantic man-sized fangs. "Get your engine going. Don't feel bad if you forget to call. He could be in ICU or...something."
"I'll try not to forget to c--"
Godzilla plunged into the depths with hardly a ripple before she could finish. The water was just clear enough that Miki saw him swim away like a crocodile. Then she faced forward, started the boat's motor and took off towards the sunrise.
What Miki didn't see was Godzilla surfacing to make sure she got away safely. He coughed as he dove again. Blood rose to the surface like red smoke and dispersed on the waves.
Miki arrived at her father's docks in half the time it would have taken without Godzilla's help. She found her phone under her makeup in her suitcase and called Wagura. He was there to pick her up in just under thirty minutes. His dirty white baseball cap had spots of brown, dried blood on the brim. His dusty black Mitsubishi smelled like shrimp. They didn't talk at all on the way to the hospital other than Wagura voicing his surprise at seeing her.
"How did you get here so fast?" He asked her.
Miki shrugged and managed a nervous smile. "Lucky currents, I guess."
Wagura shook his head. He didn't buy it, but now wasn't the time to debate.
"What happened?" Miki asked.
The bald man swallowed hard. "A chain on one of the lifting cranes broke. Hideo saw the new guy--Kenji--was about to get splattered by it. He pushed him aside right when it broke and swung with a full crate still attached. It smashed Hideo into the pile of pallets next to the wall."
Miki flinched and wished she hadn't asked. She stared ahead because she didn't want to put Wagura through reliving any more of that awful memory.
Hideo was still in surgery when Wagura and Miki arrived in the sterile gray and green waiting room. Miki parked in one of the small black chairs and picked up a JJ magazine. Somebody drew a giant phallus over the cover girl's face. Miki flipped it open anyway, and inside the cover was the mermaid ad she'd shot with Aleron. Just looking at his smug, superficial smile made her skin crawl.
"Do you feel like eating?" Wagura asked gently.
Miki looked up, her bangs hanging messily on her brow. "Um, yeah. Toast and a bottled water. I'm feeling kind of sick, but I haven't eaten yet today. I guess I should for the sake of my girlish figure."
Wagura grinned at that. He had a chipped front tooth that he never got around to fixing in all the time she'd known him. They went downstairs and ate in silence. Then they returned to the waiting room and sat in even more silence. Wagura rubbed at his stubble while Miki read a Junon magazine article called Ten Ways to Tell A Guy Is Into You. If her mind wasn't so frayed, she would have giggled about how Godzilla showed all ten signs.
Finally, two and a half hours after Miki sat down, an average sized man with graying hair stepped into the waiting room. He wore green surgical scrubs and his brown almond-shaped eyes gazed around behind square-framed spectacles.
"That's me." Wagura jumped up. "I have Hideo Saegusa's daughter here. This is Miki."
The surgeon nodded and approached. "I'm doctor Sahara." He bowed politely. "Hideo made it fine through surgery."
"Oh, thank God." Miki sighed in relief and refocused on the surgeon.
Doctor Sahara adjusted his glasses and went on, "I had to remove his spleen, and then had to rebuild the humerus--" he indicated his upper arm with his hand, "--in his left arm with plates and screws, as it was in three pieces. He told us he lifted his arm to protect his head at the last second and the crate slammed into his upper body, knocking him into a pile of pallets. He was very lucky the flat side of the swinging crate hit him and not a corner. He could have been hurt a lot worse. He might need therapy to regain the use of his arm after it heals, but outside of that he should make a full recovery. Right now he has a drainage tube in his side, but that will come out once he's healed a bit."
"Thank you so much." Miki said with tears in her eyes. If doctor Sahara wasn't a stranger, she would have hugged him right there. She almost took her phone out to call Godzilla, but stopped. He might be asleep, and she didn't want to wake him while he was still sick. She asked, "When can we see him?"
Doctor Sahara smiled. "He's still waking up, so half an hour or so. Someone will inform you when he's ready for visitors."
"Thank you very much, doctor." Wagura said, bowing politely.
The surgeon dipped his head just as his pager went off. He waved before leaving the waiting room.
Miki sagged back into her chair with her head in her hands. All the frightening worst-case scenario visions she had of her father surrounded by scary medical equipment slowly melted away.
Wagura and Miki puttered around the gift shop until a nurse called Wagura's last name. She led them to a room at the end of the hall. The walls were white and the window curtains a pale shade of gray. The privacy curtains for the beds had green and gray stripe patterns. An unoccupied bed topped in white sheets sat by the door, but the bumps of feet were visible in the bed nearest the window.
Wagura took his hat off and scratched his bald head. "Hideo?" He peeked around the privacy curtain.
"I'm awake." Hideo croaked.
That was all Miki needed to hear. She pushed past her father's friend and hurried to his bedside. "Dad!"
"Miki? Miki! Oh! What are you doing here?" Hideo's wrinkled face broke into a smile as tears poured across the creases in his sun-worn skin. He had gray stubble in the places where he'd missed shaving. A clear drainage tube attached to a bag protruded from under the gauze taped onto his left side, and his left arm was splinted in a sling that he kept propped up on a pillow. His T-shirt tan lines told the story of his life as a fisherman moving in and out of the sun.
"The big guy told me to. He said you need me more." Miki clutched Hideo's uninjured hand. "I was so scared when I heard...I'm glad you're okay."
"Nobody died...Kenji is okay?" Hideo asked.
Wagura answered quickly, "He doesn't have a scratch. You saved his life."
Hideo let out his breath and visibly relaxed, his strong, callused hand still clinging tightly to Miki's.
"How do you feel?" Miki asked him.
He shook his head, smirking. "I'll know when the medicine all wears off and I remember that I have an arm. Then I'll tell you. Wagura? Are you gonna be okay, buddy? You look white as a ghost over there!"
Wagura laughed and slapped the foot of the bed with his hat. "If you saw what you looked like, you'd be white as a ghost, too!"
Both men chuckled.
"Well, I should get myself back onto those docks. The guys need to know you're okay and all." Wagura leaned on the foot of the bed and went on, "Call me if you need anything, all right?"
Hideo nodded slowly, yawning. Wagura gave a quick bow and hurried out, his sneakers squeaking on the white tiled floor. The moment the other man stepped out of hearing range, Hideo focused intently on Miki.
"Are you all right, Miki?"
"Mmhmm." Miki answered. She pulled up a chair to sit down and set her suitcase near her feet. "Godzilla...he's not so bad. We're great friends now."
"That thing? You're friends with that thing?"
Miki looked down and petted his fingers. "Daddy, calm down. He's just like anybody else if you...I dunno--look past what he is and what he does. He let me go and told me the deal is off so I could come down here to take care of you."
"He let you go?"
"Yes." Miki replied. She almost spilled the secret about who Godzilla really was, but bit her tongue at the last second. "I told him I'd call him and let him know how you are once I knew anything definite."
"You--want to stay in contact with him?"
"Miki..." Hideo shifted under the sheets and winced.
Miki gazed out the window at the clear blue sky. It was close to eleven in the morning and bright, like a summer day should look. The world only knew Godzilla as a city-wrecking monster, and maybe he was. Did anybody out there see what she saw? Someone lonely and insecure because of how he looked, yet possessing amazing talent?
"Do you plan to go back to him once I'm healthy again?" Hideo asked her.
"I don't know. I'll have to see," she said. "You rest up and I'll go home to take care of the house. I'll be back later tonight."
He moved his head in a nod and pushed his sheet aside. She bent down, kissing his cheek, and then left him there to rest.
Last edited by Cyndi; June 22nd, 2010 at 12:23 PM.
Re: Beauty and the Beast
June 22nd, 2010, 04:42 AM
Re: Beauty and the Beast
13. Suddenly Famous
The next several days were so crazy that Miki couldn't tell her head from her toes. Between visiting her father in the hospital, keeping their home tidy and looking for people who needed a model, she didn't have time to breathe let alone make a phone call. She finally found a moment--and her phone rang before she could dial it.
"Hello?" Miki answered.
A pleasant tenor voice replied, "Good afternoon, Miss Saegusa. I'm Daisuke Himura."
Miki almost dropped the phone. Daisuke Himura was a big-name photographer, most famously known for the photos he caught of Godzilla in the water and on land. Just about every news image of Godzilla ever taken was captured by this man's camera lens.
"Mr. Himura, it's an honor," Miki sat down so her legs wouldn't buckle. Her awe escaped into her voice, "What can I do for you?"
Daisuke's voice had a smile in it, "First off, how gutsy do you think you are?"
Miki's eyebrows raised, "I'm not afraid of blood, guts and scaly things. My father is a fisherman. I used to help him with the dirty work."
"I'm glad to hear that. H. Naoto got a hold of your mermaid ad, and he wants you for an editorial. I have a great idea for the shoot."
H. Naoto? Miki's stomach did a flip-flop. He designed many of the looks on the goth and punk scene. His ads were always out there, and only the best appeared in his clothing advertisements!
"I'm all ears."
"Great!" Daisuke replied. "A few days ago, Godzilla was spotted swimming around about ten miles east of Odo island. Now, I've talked to several kaijuologists--they say he's perfectly safe to be around as long as you don't provoke him, and he's only dangerously radioactive when using his bad breath. Anyhow...are you brave enough to take a boat close to Godzilla and have me take photos with him in the background? That's if he cooperates and doesn't swim off...but we'll have to see."
Miki's heart jumped past her cranium and flopped back into her chest. She couldn't stop smiling. "I'm not afraid of Godzilla at all." She adjusted her grip on her cell phone. "I've always wanted to get my picture taken with him, anyway."
"Ha, ha! Wonderful, that's wonderful! Are you available tomorrow at six-thirty?"
It'd be an early morning...but worth it.
"I'll be there. Where do you want me to meet you?"
"The docks are fine. We're borrowing a boat from the Hideo Saegusa Fishing Company."
"Oh, that's my dad! Okay, that won't be a problem at all."
"Good to hear. I'll see you tomorrow, Miss Saegusa."
"See you then. Bye." Miki shook as she hung up and immediately dialed Godzilla's home phone. He picked up after two rings.
"Hi!" Miki chirped, smiling.
"Miki!" Godzilla's silky voice immediately brightened. He coughed a little. "How's Hideo?"
"It's not as bad as Wagura thought, but I'll have my hands full helping him around the house. But I've got more news that's really going to tickle you." Her eyes twinkled, "Any chance you can be 'napping' about ten or so miles east of your island? The best spot would be that little shallow where you can stand up and keep your head above water."
"Uhh...why? What's going on?"
"I'm doing an ad for H. Naoto tomorrow, and the photographer wants to do a shoot with you in the picture. It's Daisuke Himura."
"That guy? I've seen him on top of buildings I've passed."
"How would you like to shock his socks off?"
She could practically hear Godzilla grin on the other side.
"I'll be there by six. Always wanted to see you work."
Miki giggled. "It's a date. See you tomorrow."
The rest of the day went by Miki in a blur. She visited Hideo and they ate dinner together in his hospital room. He didn't look pleased when she informed him of the photoshoot, but he didn't make any efforts to stop her from doing it.
Miki returned home and retired to bed early after setting her alarm for four o'clock. She slept fitfully, waking with the alarm. It left her enough time to take a quick morning jog, shower and shave her legs. This shoot was big time, and she didn't want to waste Daisuke's time by showing up looking like a cactus. The sun broke the horizon when Miki left the house.
Daisuke wasn't hard to spot at the docks. Everybody else wore ratty, dirty shirts and Daisuke--tall and thin--wore a clean gray polo shirt and crisp blue jeans over his black loafers. His dark hair was slicked back off his face, showing a streak of gray. He had boyish, pouty lips and very narrow eyes that appeared closed from a distance. His skin didn't reflect his age until he grinned, then the crow's feet appeared.
"Daisuke Himura," Miki said, smiling.
He dipped his head in a slight bow. "Good morning. Ready?"
They climbed onto the boat together with the rest of Daisuke's crew. It was one of the bigger boats that could comfortably hold several men on deck. Below deck became the dressing room. Miki wasn't at all bothered at being hustled down to get ready; nobody knew how long Godzilla would stay put, so she had to be prepared to start posing the second they got into position.
Daisuke's crew dressed Miki in a black vinyl corset style gown that had a diaphanous purple chiffon skirt and matching sleeves--a gothic version of the dress Disney's Snow White wore. Her hair was pulled back into a bun, using hair sticks with dangly crystal charms on the tips. On her feet, she wore vinyl knee-high stiletto boots. The makeup artists sponged on matte foundation slightly paler than her natural skin tone, gave her smoky gray "cat" eyes and painted her lips deep purple. She looked in the mirror and mused at how easily she'd fit into the Harajuku district.
"Okay guys, head's up. I've sighted Godzilla about two miles west!" Daisuke called down the trap door.
The poor makeup artist began to shake in her boots. Miki took the petite woman's hands, smiling, "It's going to be okay. Godzilla won't hurt civilians."
Sparkling ocean greeted Miki when Daisuke helped her climb onto the deck. Ladders weren't easy when mixed with stilettos and delicate tulle. Not far ahead, Godzilla's dorsal spines rose from the water like abstract sculptures. They glistened a little in the orange morning light. Miki could tell Godzilla's head was towards them by observing where the biggest dorsal spine was in relation to the others.
"Okay guys. We have to be quiet from here on out." Daisuke readied his camera. He didn't look scared, yet Miki noticed him licking his lips and checking his equipment over and over, like somebody controlling nervous excitement. "Ready, Miki?"
Miki nodded. She wasn't the least bit afraid.
Daisuke gave his camera one last check. He told her, "Turn up the sex appeal. This is an edgy shoot. I want delicate with spice. You're a rose--but you have thorns."
Miki leaned back on the prow railing and took on one of her well known poses--angling her arms and shoulders to look like a broken down doll. She changed it up by turning to the side, putting one spike heeled boot on the railing to show some leg and tilting her head back. Godzilla's dorsal spines were huge behind her.
Suddenly, the water shifted, rocking the boat. Everybody grabbed something to keep their balance. Godzilla lifted his head out of the water, gave it a shake and his white eyes peered down at the people on deck. He came right up beside the prow where Miki still held the railing.
"Damn!" Daisuke hissed. "Miki!"
"It's okay," Miki hissed back. She heard Daisuke scramble up on top of the cabin, and refocused on Godzilla. "Hey there."
Godzilla arched a brow ridge without speaking. Talking was off limits and they both knew it. He offered Miki a subtle nod in approval of her attire, which made her giggle inwardly.
Miki glanced at Daisuke. He was shooting frame after frame. She knew this would be the moment to make this photoshoot even better. Turning to face Godzilla again, she beckoned him closer. His head was the size of a small house, but Daisuke was far enough way that he'd get everything in the shot he needed. Miki reached up and petted Godzilla's snout. She saw his mouth curl into a grin--his snout was ticklish--and she gazed unafraid at fangs longer than she was tall.
"Yeah! Oh, God, Miki!" Daisuke whispered. "Looks like he's smiling at you...keep that going!"
He IS smiling, Miki mused. She popped her left leg up like a woman in a romantic movie, parted her lips as if about to receive a kiss and leaned up so her face was mere inches from Godzilla's huge teeth. Her mind drifted to the photoshoot in his bedroom--and afterward. They'd been more intimate than this, and he'd touched her just like a man.
Were you human once? Miki wondered when Godzilla's snout came even closer. She tilted her head back to expose her throat and his teeth brushed against her. A being of such power and destruction, touching her gently like a feather.
"You are so awesome for this," Miki whispered, knowing Godzilla's acute ears could hear it.
Godzilla responded with a quiet sniff of a laugh. He leaned back to let out his characteristic roar and the sound vibrated every bone in Miki's body. His tail rose, splashed down on the water's surface and he was suddenly gone, his dorsal spines speeding away until they vanished under the sea.
The water calmed. The boat stopped rocking. The air stood absolutely still.
"Holy ****!" Daisuke cried. "Miki, you are crazy! You are crazy! That was incredible! If you were scared...it didn't show at all. Wow!"
"I wasn't scared." Miki turned back to him, grinning from ear to ear. "Why be afraid of somebody you understand?"
Daisuke didn't get her statement. He shook his head, also grinning. "C'mon, let's go back these photos up. I have dozens of great shots."
There were several fantastic pictures. The picture chosen was the one where Godzilla touched Miki's neck with his giant fang--she'd turned slightly towards the camera, and her head was thrown back as if in ecstasy. Daisuke got Godzilla's entire face in the shot, smile and all.
The ad ran a fortnight later--on billboards, in magazines and as website ad banners. One of Daisuke's assistants caught the whole thing on his camera phone, and the video popped up all over the news.
"Now, look at this image," a female reporter said on TV. "You might think this is digitally enhanced. Think again. More on this incredible 'Beauty and the Beast' moment at eleven!"
Miki shut off the television, smirking. If only they knew Godzilla like she did.
Hideo was released from the hospital three days after the ad ran. The next few weeks were spent juggling physical therapists and doctor visits. Between helping her father and managing the house, Miki found herself grabbing the phone several times a day. She had no idea the ad would rocket her into the spotlight. Everybody wanted That Girl Who Posed With Godzilla. She got asked to make TV appearances, called into interviews and even spoke to kaijuologists about her experience.
Her story always remained the same: "Godzilla doesn't go after civilians. I knew that since I was little--but people don't always seem to get that. If you respect him, he respects you. I've wanted to see him up close since I was a kid, and I got my wish. I'd do it again in a second if you asked me to. I wasn't scared. He needs to be understood, not feared."
The interviewer laughed, "Yeah, but he was all over you!"
She'd shrugged and smiled at that. "Not many people know that Godzilla has an intense sense of smell. I guess he liked my shampoo. If I see him again, I'll ask!"
Of course, the interviewer took it as a joke, but Miki let the truth hang in her smile. She just wished this catapult into stardom had better timing. The stress of so much at once left her nauseated and tired much of the day. Here she thought she'd be home with her injured father, yet her life chose this moment to take off and she had to go with it or be left behind.
Hideo understood--and often encouraged her.
"Your mother would be proud," he said. "You ride that spotlight, Miki. Ride it as long as you can. I'll be fine."
Meanwhile, Godzilla dunked his head into the kitchen sink and let the cold water spray over his face. Once again, his fever had spiked. He was glad he'd finished his album--he doubted his voice would survive another song. It hurt to breathe. Earlier in the morning, he saw blood in the sink after a particularly intense coughing fit. Behind him, his laptop screen glowed eerily in competition with the morning light.
Miki hadn't called in almost a month. Godzilla didn't blame her--the photoshoot he showed up for was all over the news. He smiled and his heart flip flopped every time he turned on a news channel and saw her face. In the same instance, during its flip flops, his heart sank a little more each day.
Her dreams were coming true, and they didn't seem to involve him.
Godzilla gave his head a hard shake just as his phone rang. Without looking, he grabbed it and croaked, "Hello?"
"Morning!" Miki chirped.
His day got better instantly. "Miki! You're a star! I just saw you on Oprah yesterday!"
"Aw..." She giggled, and he could tell he made her blush. "You helped, you know. I'm sorry I haven't called more. My dad is in therapy for his arm and I'm in a million places at once."
"Oh, I understand." Godzilla tilted his head back and closed his eyes, muffling a cough.
"Are you still sick?" Miki's voice became worried.
"Heck of a bug." He said. "But that's neither here nor there. Listen, uh...I finished the album."
Her excitement made him smile. "It's all mixed and the cover is done. It'll probably be out in the next two months or so, but..." His smile became a grin, "You'll be the first person in the world to hear the single I'm releasing before the album. No questions, you'll see."
Miki sighed quietly, fake-pouting, "You love teasing me, don't you?"
"Of course. It's hard not to."
They both laughed.
"I really called to say thanks...and I'm sorry for being so busy." Her regret was plainly obvious; he couldn't be angry at her if he tried. She had no idea she was lifting his spirit when she went on, "I didn't want you to think I forgot about you."
"That's sweet of you."
"You're the sweet one." Miki said. "Oops, hold on, another call."
"I'll wait," said Godzilla.
Once her line clicked off, he moved the phone away to cough hard into the sink. He gasped for air in between and dropped himself into a kitchen chair. His gaze turned to the laptop on the table. Getting into government websites took little effort. It was how he stayed ahead of their advancements, but this time he ran into something he knew hadn't been published until recently. His white eyes roved over the laptop screen, and reflected in them was all of the information about Weapon X.
Miki came back, shrieking excitedly, "Oh, my gosh! Godzilla, I'm going to walk for H. Naoto in Japan Fashion Week! Oh, my gosh!"
"Really?" His heart plummeted while hers rose. "Oh, that is AWESOME! I told you you're a star!"
"This is so amazing! It's going to be on TV! I'll be doing runway, Godzilla! I've always wanted to do runway!"
"I'm so happy for you! That's--that's just awesome news, Miki!" Godzilla said. Then he coughed into his hand. He looked down at the blood all over his scaly palm. His fear didn't show in his voice, "I'll definitely be watching. I'd walk with you...heh, heh, but my big, fat *** would break the runway."
"You nut!" Miki laughed and shifted her phone around in her hand. "Thank you."
"You're welcome, Miki." He cleared his throat. "Hey, I have to go. I have calls to make and stuff...talk to you later?"
"Oh! Sure, sure! No problem. I have things to do, too." Miki was smiling. "Bye."
Godzilla hung up the phone and pushed his laptop shut. God, just let me live long enough to see her walk the runway...I won't ask for anything else. Just give me that much.
Last edited by Cyndi; June 22nd, 2010 at 12:24 PM.
Re: Beauty and the Beast
June 22nd, 2010, 04:42 AM
Re: Beauty and the Beast
14. Shock of a Lifetime
Weights clanked and the blue exercise mat scrunched as Hideo flopped down after working his arm. He never realized how weak an arm could get after weeks in splints. Moving it around hurt. His physical therapist, a sprightly older lady named Eri Yamaguchi, broke into laughter at something another patient said. She had a pleasant soprano laugh, like twittering birds.
"And there's our star!" Eri chirped when Miki appeared in the doorway.
"Oh, stop. You're making me blush." Miki giggled. She recently cut her hair shorter--a cute bob at the nape of her neck--and she stood dressed in new designer jeans with a pretty yellow and white peasant top. The money she made covered the rent and Hideo's medical bills with some to spare.
Hideo was very happy for his daughter. Seeing her reaching her dreams made his heart swell in pride, yet the ad with Godzilla left him more unsettled than he let on. She said Godzilla had been nothing but nice to her. Sometimes she talked about him like a boyfriend. Two weeks ago, when she found out about her place in Fashion Week, Godzilla was the first person she phoned! How could she possibly speak so kindly to and about that...that thing...who destroyed lives? Couldn't she see the danger she'd been in?
"How's the arm?" Miki asked, breaking him from his thoughts.
"Oh, uh...sore." Hideo flexed his fingers. If he touched near his elbow, he could feel the edge of the metal plate helping keep it stable.
"Your father is a tough old guy." Eri said.
"Don't call me old!" Hideo grinned.
Miki laughed and gently hugged him. "Glad you're doing better." She flopped onto the mat next to him, still giggling. "I need to watch what I eat. I put on a couple pounds and I can't be chunky for Fashion Week. You'd think stress made me lose weight, but noooooo." Her tongue poked out playfully, "Not me."
Hideo patted her arm and said, "You'll be fine. Just don't get too crazy about dieting. I won't let you turn into one of those anorexic sticks."
"I won't." Miki sighed. "Tonight's the night. And before I go, I get to visit the doctor. Yay."
"Should I come with you?"
She blushed, "Um, it's the lady doctor, dad..."
"Ah. 'Stay away, dad.' I gotcha." Hideo winked. "Well, get on out of here then so I can flirt with Eri."
"He's horrible!" Eri added jokingly.
"Okay." Miki kissed Hideo's cheek. "The show is at seven tonight."
"I'll be watching the TV for you, Miki."
A package waited in the mailbox when Miki jogged into the house. Her address was written in Godzilla's distinctive handwriting. She excitedly tore into the box to find the image of her very naked self embracing Godzilla--though only his arm was visible in the frame--and the title of the single decorated the lower right corner in beautiful white script. He couldn't have timed it more perfectly. After she was seen posing with him at full size, anybody seeing this would assume she posed with an actor in a rubber suit.
Miki ran to her room to put the CD single into her stereo. It played while she changed, shaved her legs and brushed her teeth. Godzilla's beautiful voice had such passion in it. This song sounded so different from his other albums.
The music started out as gentle piano chords and a heartbeat drum pulse gaining momentum up to the chorus...
"Everybody wants to be understood...
Well, I can hear you.
Everybody wants to be loved.
Don't give up!
...and then broke into a full orchestra of upbeat drums and strings.
Miki sat back on her bed, listening. The song filled her with incredible, uplifting hope. Then it was done, and just as she reached out to shut it off, it moved to a hidden track. The Italian Romeo and Juliet song he sang for her in his basement graced her ears again--this time in full splendor with a full string orchestra. Cellos and violins--and Miki felt tears prickle in her eyes when she read the translation:
Un giorno sai, per noi verrį (One day, you know, for us will come)
la libertį di amarci qui senza limiti. (the freedom to love each other here without limits)
E fiorirį il sogno a noi negato (And the dream denied to us will blossom)
si svelerį l'amor celato ormai. (The love now hidden will reveal itself)
Un giorno sai, per vivere (One day, you know, to live)
la vita che ci sfugge qui, (The life that eludes us here)
Un giorno sai, per vivere (One day, you know, to live)
la vita che ci sfugge qui. (The life that eludes us here)
L'amore in noi supererį (Our love will overcome)
Gli ostacoli e le maree delle avversitą (The obstacles and the tides of adversity)
E ci starį anche per noi nel mondo (And there will also be for us in the world)
Un tempo in cui l'amore vincerį (A time in which love will triumph)
Un tempo in cui l'amore vincerį (A time in which love will triumph)
Miki blew her nose in a tissue and wiped her eyes. It wasn't fair. He was so wonderful, and trapped inside that body of a monster. Nobody else could see what she saw in him. When she closed her eyes and listened to him sing, he was the most beautiful person she'd ever met.
The music faded away. Miki opened her eyes, a changed person in ways even she didn't yet know. She turned off her stereo and checked the clock.
"Ahh! I'm late!" She chided herself. Shutting off the coffee pot, she clambered past Hideo, kissed his cheek and dashed out to his truck.
Without even looking up from his newspaper, Hideo held up the keys. Miki ran back inside, grabbed them and raced out again. She didn't see him grin at her retreating back.
Miki arrived at the doctor's office only five minutes past her appointment time. How unsexy could she look, running in red-faced and panting with summer sweat on her brow? The receptionist handed her the paperwork. She filled it out quickly, and only paused at the date of her last menstrual period. It was June now, and the last one she remembered was around April. She always missed her period when she stressed out like she had been for the past several weeks--so she noted the correct date and wrote down why on the side.
A nurse led her into the office and gave her privacy to change into a hospital gown. Miki sat on the crackly tissue paper stretched over the gray, cushioned table. Her eyes perused the silver tray with a packaged speculum, swabs and microscope slides.
The gynecologist--a young, portly woman with a long braid and glasses--walked quietly into the room. The ID card clipped to her pocket identified her as doctor Ayumi Ueda.
"Good afternoon, Miki. All excited about tonight?"
"Yup!" Miki smiled. "How's life, doctor Ueda?"
The woman shrugged and pulled on her gloves. "Same old, same old. Still missing periods with stress?"
Miki nodded, sighing. "And lately I haven't felt so great. Like I'm about to have it any day. My boobs are sore, too. I'm completely okay with going on the Pill to regulate my hormones if that'll help. I can't be miserable and bloated when I'm trying to be sexy for the camera."
Doctor Ueda laughed. Her front teeth were coffee stained, but healthy. "Don't we all wish that? Come on, let's have a look-see and make sure you're okay."
This was the part Miki hated. She leaned back, scooted to the end of the table and set her feet in the stirrups. Doctor Ueda rubbed a little KY jelly on her gloved fingers.
"Just relax." She said.
Miki still flinched a little. She felt doctor Ueda push up inside while probing her abdomen with her other hand. The other woman's eyes widened, blinking. "When did you say your last period was?"
"You became sexually active...?"
"Just a sec. Did you use the restroom before you came in here?"
"No...I planned to, but I was late getting here."
Doctor Ueda covered Miki's nether regions with a clean sheet, lifted her gown and spread another, cold jelly across her abdomen. She reached for the ultrasound equipment behind the table, turned it on and pressed the transducer to Miki's stomach. She frowned, pushing down harder until the pressure on Miki's bladder became mildly uncomfortable.
Miki winced. "What's going on? Is there a tumor inside me?"
"Hold on, I'll find out. Ah!"
The hissing of the sonogram equipment suddenly changed into a steady whoosh-whoosh. Doctor Ueda turned the screen around. On it, Miki saw a tiny, blurry shape inside a round, dark circle. It looked like a gray peanut with flippers, and it was moving.
"You're pregnant," she said.
"What?!" Miki jolted up in shock. "How can that be? The guy I was with is...I thought he couldn't have children. How is this possible?"
"I guess he wasn't as incapable as he thought." Doctor Ueda eyed the screen again, "But if the timing's right and the crown to rump ratio is right, that's a perfectly healthy eight week old embryo. You'll have it in January of next year."
Miki leaned forward with her head in her hands. She started to laugh and cry simultaneously. Was nothing in the universe impossible? The little wiggly thing on the sonogram screen looked perfectly human! And the only person in the world to lay hands on her that way...
"I need to go." Miki hurriedly wiped off with a tissue and reached for her clothes. "I need to get through Fashion Week first. Then I'll figure out where I'm going from there."
The doctor patted her shoulder comfortingly. "You'll probably start having morning sickness soon. Keep crackers by your bed and eat them before you get up. It seems to hit women worse if their stomach is too empty."
"Right." Miki said. Her heart thudded in her ears, and she didn't know whether it was fear or excitement. Would this baby stay human inside her? What if it started showing other signs later in the pregnancy?
I should call him. No, no, this is something I have to tell him in person. I'll head over there the second I'm done tonight. I should call him so he knows I'm coming his way later.
Miki stopped in the restroom to empty her aching bladder. Then she exited the office in a hurry, almost knocking into a pair of twins standing in the doorway. They wore business suits--one red, the other blue--and watched her run by.
Godzilla didn't pick up his phone when Miki dialed. She sat in the truck, redialing. The radio cut in with news of Godzilla attacking Yokohama. Miki slapped the steering wheel until the reporter mentioned something about a Weapon X and the monster spitting blood everywhere. A whole sector of Yokohama was evacuated and blocked off due to possible radioactive contamination.
Miki peeled out of her parking space. The screeching tires echoed around the parking garage as she drove like a madwoman home. How she didn't get ticketed was a miracle she'd never understand. She arrived home with the news story still on the radio. Rushing into the house, she grabbed the remote from Hideo's hand and switched the channel to a news station.
On TV, an aerial view showed Godzilla collapsed in a heap on the beach. Even from far away Miki could see his sides and chest heaving onscreen. She took the TV off mute and listened.
"...sources say a biological weapon attuned to Godzilla's DNA was used back in April..."
Miki's mind flashed back to that day. Godzilla came home so happy about no military attacking him. He mentioned the crop duster. Mere hours later he was sick.
She watched Godzilla move on the TV screen. He got up and appeared disoriented, staggering parallel to the ocean. His feet kicked up giant sand dunes and his tail knocked over several beachfront properties. He was walking in his humanoid posture--neck upright with his arms at his sides the way he walked around his house. A close-up of his face filled the screen. The kaiju's eyes were glassy. Miki could tell he had no idea where he was.
Finally, mercifully, Godzilla found the water. He collapsed onto his belly, hacked up a giant gout of blood and slowly crawled into the waves. The helicopter filming Godzilla circled the beach. People wearing HAZMAT suits worked quickly to clean up the thick red substance staining the sand.
"Godzilla," Miki whispered. She cupped her lower abdomen where the child they somehow conceived lay safe inside her like a secret.
"Sweetheart..." Hideo said, "You can't do anything for him from here. Do what you have to do tonight. If he's as tough as people say he is, he's not gonna die from this. Remember the cadmium in eighty-four?"
"He got lucky with that nuke going off in the sky." Miki sighed. She dialed her cell phone on her way into her bedroom. "Godzilla, this is Miki. Call my cell when you get to your house. I don't care if it's three in the morning. Just leave a voice mail. I need to know you're okay. I'm worried about you. Call me, okay? Please? I'm thinking about you. I'm coming to your place after Fashion Week is over--I have news I can only tell you in person. Talk soon, bye."
Where was he? How long did he wander around on land? What time was it? What day was it?
Cold ocean water chased away the fever in Godzilla's body. He found strength again, enough to make it home. At his steady speed he reached his beach property a short time before sunset. The second he emerged onto the sand, his strength left him.
He had no idea how long he lay unconscious in the surf. It was late afternoon when he fell and almost dark when he woke. A full moon rose above the horizon, a beautiful silver disk against the approaching storm clouds. The air stood still. So still Godzilla heard foam hissing around him. Chills sent him shivering. Salty air surrounded him like a warm embrace. It gave him strength.
He dragged himself upright and walked to his home where he'd left his TV running--a precaution against forgetting which channel Miki would be on. He knew what day it was now.
His phone was still on the floor where he'd dropped it on his way out for a radiation fix. He looked at it, took a step and collapsed onto his side. A resounding crack echoed in his head--the sound of his own skull hitting marble.
Everything hurt. Head, throat, lungs, joints...and moving caused pink spots to dance in his vision like static from his brain.
I'm going to die here on this damn floor, covered in sand. Godzilla thought bitterly. But she'll have her dream. She's...she's my dream. Miki...
A red light on the phone blinked, telling him he had a message. He grasped it by the antenna, pulled it closer and listened.
"Godzilla, this is Miki. Call my cell when you get to your house. I don't care if it's three in the morning. Just leave a voice mail. I need to know you're okay. I'm worried about you. Call me, okay? Please? I'm thinking about you. I'm coming to your place after Fashion Week is over--I have news I can only tell you in person. Talk soon, bye."
Tokyo Fashion Week would be on in an hour. Would he last that long?
Godzilla dialed Miki's number and left her a message. Then his strength failed. His hand, still clutching the phone, slapped into the floor with a sickening thud. He closed his eyes to wait for the end.
Last edited by Cyndi; June 22nd, 2010 at 12:24 PM.
Re: Beauty and the Beast
June 22nd, 2010, 04:43 AM
Re: Beauty and the Beast
15. Still Breathing
Backstage was utter and complete chaos. Miki waded past naked girls, half dressed girls, girls in abstract avant garde Lolita outfits and the hair, makeup and technicians following them around. A chair with her name on it in Kanji sat in front of a lighted mirror.
"Miki Saegusa!" The blonde American woman jogged up to her. She was tall and hourglass figured, probably a model herself at one time. "Do you speak English?"
"Yes, I do." Miki answered in English.
The woman looked relieved. "Thank God, my Japanese isn't so great. I'm Clarissa and I'm doing your hair and makeup tonight. Naoto wants you to wear the finisher for his line since it's a petite size, and you're the girl he had in mind. It's pretty heavy duty and getting you ready is going to take a while. You'll be the last one out."
"Oh, what is it?" Miki raised her eyebrows. Her first time on the runway, and she got to wear a finisher?
Clarissa pushed aside the rack, revealing an incredible white wedding dress sitting on a form. Miki walked around it, whistling in appreciation for all the work put into it. The ball gown had a satin corset-style bodice and a halter neckline with a mandarin collar. Hundreds of yards of tulle composed the thick skirt, which was almost as wide as Miki's spread arms. Teardrop shaped Swarovski crystals were woven into each layer of the skirt and Swarovski beads decorated the bodice in spiral patterns like clouds. The accessories laid out included diamond floral sidepieces for her hair, a ten foot long veil, a chunky diamond bracelet and four inch platform heel boots.
"You don't even need a crinoline with it. The skirt creates its own body," Clarissa explained. "This is going to look great on you."
It wasn't a style Miki herself would wear, but there was no denying the beauty. And the designer chose her to wear it!
"He calls this dress Autumn Rain." Clarissa went on. "In America, it would probably cost a million dollars. There's only three in the world."
In the distance, techno music began to play. Girls scrambled for the door where men wearing headsets guided them out. Other women came back and rushed to change.
Amidst the chaos, Miki sat naked except for a towel in the makeup chair. She winced at the scent of spray-on foundation. Clarissa worked on her makeup while another woman styled her hair to give it more body. Miki's phone vibrated on the counter before going to voicemail.
Clarissa had a heavy hand with the black liquid eyeliner, mascara and shiny red lipstick. Very retro pin-up girl style.
"Twenty minutes for Miki!" A male voice yelled.
"Okay, let's get you dressed."
Miki nodded her head. She got up while Clarissa lifted the dress off the form, knelt and held it open for Miki to step in.
"Oh, wow!" A girl ran up to the rack Miki stood next to. "Look! That's Miki! She posed with Godzilla!"
Blinking, Miki blushed at having a crowd appear when she had nothing but a towel on. She covered her breasts with it while stepping into the skirt of the huge ball gown. It wasn't easy to answer all their questions while being told to stand still. Clarissa finally shooed the group away.
"Fifteen minutes for Miki!" yelled the male voice from earlier.
Miki thought the twenty pound ball gown felt like a prison wrapped around her body. All the tulle, satin, beading and teardrop crystals were heavy! The corset laces tightened in quick jerks. Miki flinched when the boning dug into her skin. She braced herself on the counter while Clarissa's assistant helped her into and tied the platform boots. They, too, weighed five pounds each. Hairpins jabbed Miki's scalp as Clarissa pinned the veil into her slicked-down hair.
"Damn...that's incredible. Ruth, look at her..."
"Beautiful. So strong."
"Right." Clarissa took Miki's arm. "Let's get ten quick frames by the curtain. Work it!"
Miki automatically put her hands on her hips, hunched her back and extended her neck. She called this the 'cramps' pose because of how the posture made her look like she was clutching herself in menstrual pain. In the fashion world it was considered very editorial. She maintained virtually the same pose while Clarissa photographed her at different angles.
"Great job!" Clarissa grinned. "Okay, chill for a minute and you'll get called when it's time."
Finally, a break!
Miki grabbed her phone and found one voicemail from Godzilla. Probably a pep talk to calm her nerves and an apology for scaring her. She held the phone to her ear, listening.
"Miki, it's me..." Godzilla's silky voice barely rasped above a whisper. He sounded like he couldn't breathe. "I might...be dead...by the time...you get this. Please listen...I have so...so much...I need to say. First off...you walk that...that runway...and own it. You earned it. You...totally deserve...this dream...that's about to come...true. I'm so...glad I knew you...Miki. You're so...beautiful..."
Tears welled in Miki's eyes. Tilting her head back, she looked up so she wouldn't ruin her makeup. Her stomach dropped through the floor.
"I can't talk...much more...but there's something...something you have...to know. Right now...please don't cry...I know you're about to...but listen--"
"Five minutes!" yelled the technician.
Clarissa and Ruth's shadows fell across the mirror. Miki stood there, clutching the phone until her knuckles turned white.
"Miki, let's go!" Clarissa waved her out.
"...you incredible...amazing...woman..." Godzilla's voice whispered again in her ear. He coughed, painfully. "Ugh, God, this...is hard...Miki...I-I'm scared, but..."
Miki still had her phone as she started towards the door.
"Come on!" Ruth hedged.
Two women stepped into Ruth's path. Their black hair was pulled back and they wore expensive designer evening gowns--one in a red sequined mermaid silhouette and the other in a satin blue sheath--and they turned to stand on either side of the door leading onto the catwalk. Both gazed curiously at Miki, but Miki hardly noticed them.
"...if I don't...see you again...there's something I...want you to know--"
Outside the doorway, cameras flickered and the outlines of people formed a black haze behind the bright spotlights. Miki stared ahead with Godzilla's voice still rumbling in her ear. Her dream, her dream from since she was little, was right there...
"--I love you, Miki. With...all that I am...I love you...and I...always...will. Bye."
...but what kind of dream would it be if she couldn't share it?
Godzilla understood her dreams, and wanted them just as much as she did. He understood her desire to succeed. He understood her, and the only thing holding her back was the same stupid question that always made her hesitate to admit how she truly felt:
What might the world think?
Miki rubbed her belly where the baby would someday grow. A child conceived in love. He loved her. Nothing in life held more importance than that one simple truth.
Godzilla was in his home, alone, afraid and dying, and she wasn't with him because she thought she could put it all off a little bit longer.
Well, no more, dammit! Miki thought. Screw what the world thinks! He needs me now!
She turned on her heels, lifted the front of the heavy skirt so she wouldn't trip and bolted out of the backstage dressing room, barely hindered by the heavy dress or the high heels on her feet. Somebody could put a mountain on her back and she'd still find it in herself to run towards the one who needed her most.
A door caught the veil. Miki yanked it off her head with a jerk of her hand. Hairpins sparkled in the overhead lights before bouncing onto the ground. She let everything fall without looking back.
Outside, people turned to stare at the woman in white who bounded down the steps in a spray of delicate tulle and climbed into a dumpy old pickup truck.
Miki's skirt filled up most of the front seat. She fought, rearranged and huffed until she'd somewhat contained it under the seat belt. Swarovski crystals dug into her thighs. She wasn't even sure how she operated the pedals with those thick boots on her feet. Obeying traffic laws through the thirty minute drive to her father's dock tried her last ounces of patience. At the last red light, she yelled a curse that made the elderly couple in the next lane gasp. Miki ignored them. She peeled around the corner onto the docks, parked illegally next to the water and bunched up the skirt again to climb onto the newest, fastest fishing boat. She didn't know all the details about it yet, just that it was built to go fast over long distances.
Hideo left the keys hidden under the front seat. Miki silently thanked him for being a little neglectful in that regard as she started the engine. Pearlescent moonlight veiled her as she steered the boat towards open water.
Rain pelted the sand outside. Godzilla could hear it over the commotion on TV about a runaway model. He drifted between awareness and dreams, and shivered with fever. His head hurt so bad he could barely open his eyes. Everything sounded too loud or too soft. He had no sense of time. As the night wore on and the rain fell heavier, he started to feel a warm euphoria. Like he did when Miki gave herself to him without caring about his appearance...and how good she felt, smelled, tasted, sounded and looked...
Lightning lit the beach. High wind blew cold rain onto Godzilla's legs and rustled the sakura trees in his front garden. Thunder bounced off the sea in rippling booms. Godzilla swore he heard a motor somewhere inside the music of the clouds.
A shadow blocked the door, outlined by lightning. He could see the silhouette on the backs of his eyelids.
Godzilla opened his eyes.
There stood Miki, bedraggled, wearing a million dollar wedding gown with mud stains all around the hem. Her dark hair was plastered to her cheeks. Black eyeliner had oozed halfway down her face like ebony tears. Her wet skin glistened in the shifting light of the TV set.
Even as a wreck, she was stunningly beautiful.
Her chest heaved until she caught her breath. She called his name, and his heart soared.
"Godzilla?" Miki breathed. She knew she looked ghastly like something out of Hell, but Godzilla had it far worse off than she did. He lay in a heap on his side, a puppet tossed carelessly aside. From the doorway she could make out the pallor of his normally charcoal gray hide and the waxy white hue of his tongue. His mouth was parched and his snout smeared with dried blood. He still clutched the phone in his left hand.
"Godzilla," Miki's vision blurred behind a sheen of tears. She dropped to her knees beside him, picked up his head and laid it in her lap, her other hand stroking his cheek. Blood and sand stained the fabric of her dress, but she didn't care. Being with him, holding him, meant more than all the money in the universe.
Godzilla gazed up at her in the darkness. His eyes were glassy, almost silver with the TV light flickering across them. He took slow, shallow breaths. His chest made horrible rattling noises and the muscles in his throat strained during each inhalation.
Miki knew that sound. Her mother did the same thing right before she died.
"I'm here." She whispered. "I got your message...and I came here for you."
His eyes blinked slowly, as if it hurt to keep them open.
Miki took Godzilla's hand. It felt so cold that she broke into tears against his fingers.
"I've been such an idiot..." Miki sobbed. "I-I'm so sorry. I worried so much about what other people might think of us. It shouldn't matter. It doesn't matter. You said it yourself in your own song--'everybody wants to be understood...well, I can hear you...'"
Godzilla brushed his knuckles against her jaw. Tears brimmed in his eyes. "It's...okay...Miki...shhh, don't...don't cry...you're ruining...your makeup."
That made her giggle for a second. She felt him cup her face and rub his thumb back and forth across her cheekbone. Its rough texture didn't repulse her in the least.
"Miki..." He rasped.
Miki moved his hand to her lower abdomen and held it there. Her bottom lip shuddered.
"You can't feel it yet, but there's a baby in there." Heartache constricted her throat, making her choke on her voice. "That's your baby. Your baby, Godzilla. I don't care what he or she will look like...I don't even care what people will say when I tell them you're the father. I'm going to have this baby because it's a part of you, and I love you." She swallowed hard and looked straight into his eyes. "I love you, Godzilla. Do you hear me? I love you."
Somehow, he found the strength to smile up at her. If anything scared him before, it was gone now. He stroked Miki's belly without breaking eye contact. Suddenly, his eyelids fluttered and the stridor in his chest grew louder. He had seconds, maybe less. Miki leaned over and touched her lips to the end of his snout. She didn't care that he lacked human lips or that his mouth was full of jagged teeth.
Godzilla closed his mouth, trying to return her kiss. Drawing back, Miki watched the life literally drain out of his eyes. His eyelids fell half-shut, letting the tears trapped underneath escape along the sides of his head. The muscles in his throat stopped straining. His efforts to breathe grew smaller and smaller until they ceased altogether. She cradled his head against her chest, slowly petting his cheek as he died. All of the tension and pain left his body. He became absolutely still--a discarded Halloween costume surrounded by tulle.
Miki kissed his forehead. Her hand found his and she interlocked their fingers.
"That's it...just go to sleep," she whispered in his little pointed ear, and slowly rocked him back and forth. Her hand continued to stroke his cheek. "I love you so much."
He left this life knowing she loved him and his child grew in her belly. That gave her comfort. She laid him down, taking great care when she slipped her skirt out from underneath his heavy body. The dress was very well-made; the tulle didn't rip and not a single Swarovski crystal popped off.
Rain continued its relentless attack outside. Everything seemed to weep, even the clouds. The ocean writhed in throes of agony. Thunder beat like cosmic timpani further off. Tree branches bowed mournfully. Lightning illuminated something colorful on the shoreline, but in the next flash it was gone.
Miki pushed the front door shut using her hip. It tried to blow open twice, until, frustrated, she threw her weight against it and turned the deadbolt key. Then she tip toed upstairs and returned carrying Godzilla's black bedsheet, which she used to cover all but his head. She wet a paper towel and washed the blood and sand off his face. His eyelids fell open each time she tried to shut them, so she gave up. She managed to close his mouth by resting his folded hands under his cheek. He looked more comfortable that way.
Miki took in the scene one last time before she drew the sheet over Godzilla's head. Her hands kept shaking.
In the morning, she decided, she'd call her father to help her take care of Godzilla's remains. She didn't like leaving him there on the floor, but he was too heavy to move without help. At least the sheet gave him some dignity.
Miki retreated into the downstairs bathroom. The wonderful Swarovski crystal-encrusted skirt of her million dollar gown was dirty along the hemline. All the tulle took up most of the doorway. She washed the black streaks off her face. The eye makeup that hadn't run stayed put--she'd need special eye-makeup remover to get it completely off--but she did away with most of the foundation, the lipstick and the blush.
She gazed at the cracked medicine cabinet mirror. Her reflection stared back, its edges slightly offset by the fractures on the mirror's surface. Miki Saegusa, the model who found it in herself to love someone hated by everybody else.
How would she even explain this to people?
Miki's bladder complained, and she silently thanked the older models who taught her how to use the bathroom while wearing a huge, full skirt. Grabbing the front of the skirt, she bunched it to the side, took her underwear completely off and straddled the toilet backwards. While doing her business, she managed to untie the corset laces, loosening the bodice enough to bend over, but it still wasn't loose enough to pull down over her hips after she finished. The buttons on the back were so numerous and tiny that she couldn't reach to undo them, and she didn't dare risk ripping the fabric. Dirt would come off, rips wouldn't. She choked back frustrated tears as she pulled the leftover pins and scintillating side-sprays out of her hair. Then she bent down to remove the boots and hurled them at the wall, where they bounced off and landed in opposite corners.
It's not fair! He's so wonderful and he's gone!
Miki stormed out of the bathroom, flopped down on the couch and sighed. Her elbow bumped the remote. The TV turned onto a nonexistent static channel. In the flickering light Miki noticed a CD labeled February Song sitting in the open stereo CD tray. She pushed it in and the stereo began to play automatically.
The storm raged outside as Godzilla's voice wafted through the surround sound speakers. Miki handled it until the chorus came up, and then the tears she held back exploded to the surface.
"...and I never want to let you down.
Forgive me if I slip away...
When all that I've known is lost and found--
I promise you, I, I'll come back to you one day..."
Miki curled up on the couch and cried until a rustle startled her. She jolted into a sitting position to see an old woman in rags kneeling next to Godzilla's lifeless body. The woman looked up with a pair of brilliant, beautiful blue eyes.
"Sleep, darling..." She said.
"Who are you?" Miki asked.
A new voice spoke, "Don't worry."
"Everything will be all right," said another, softer female voice.
Miki looked over at the coffee table. Standing there in elaborate old-fashioned dresses, one in red, the other in blue, were two tiny women. They weren't even a foot tall and looked like fairies without wings. Their faces were vaguely familiar...where did she see them before?
"Who...who are you?"
The fairies smiled at each other. Then the woman in the blue dress stretched out her hand. Miki felt suddenly tired--so tired she couldn't keep her eyes open. She looked behind her again at the old woman bent over Godzilla. Maybe it was her imagination, but she swore she saw glowing gold powder fall from the woman's scraggly white hair to cover Godzilla in a shimmering cocoon of light.
Godzilla's voice continued to croon from the speakers.
"Morning is waking up.
And sometimes it's more than just enough
when all that you need to love
is in front of your eyes.
It's in front of your eyes..."
Miki felt herself falling back again onto the couch cushions. The lovely fairy in red hopped onto the arm of the couch. Elaborate gold-trimmed blue ribbons were braided into her hair.
"Everything will be clear in the morning." She laid her hand on Miki's forehead. "Good night, Miki."
And Miki slept more soundly than she ever did in her life.
Last edited by Cyndi; June 22nd, 2010 at 12:24 PM.
Re: Beauty and the Beast
June 22nd, 2010, 04:44 AM
Re: Beauty and the Beast
16. Ever After Begins
It seemed like Miki just closed her eyes when she felt a light touch on her hand. She turned her head further into the couch cushion, not wanting to face a world without Godzilla. The last notes of his song--how many times did it play during the night?--came to her.
"...Where is that old friend gone?
Lost in a February song.
Tell him it won't be long
'till he opens his eyes.
Opens his eyes..."
Somebody turned off the stereo. Miki covered her eyes with one hand. The touch came again, this time on her shoulder. She groaned, opening her eyes to tell the source to buzz off.
A young man bent over her, clutching a black sheet wrapped around his lean frame. He had wavy brunette hair framing his handsome features. Long eyelashes surrounded hooded dark-brown eyes, which were set beneath thick eyebrows. A slightly large Polish nose almost dominated his face. His lips were boyish and his chin rough with stubble. He stood about six feet tall, and she could tell his legs made up most of his height.
Something about him was strangely familiar. Where did she see that guy before?
"Miki..." The man said. He sounded exactly like Godzilla. Same silky baritone voice.
Miki jolted back in a rustle of fabric. It came to her then: That man was in the photograph she found in a coat pocket several months ago. She looked over the back of the couch. Godzilla's body was gone.
"Who are you?" She cried, "What did you do with Godzilla?"
"Miki, it's me!" he said. Kneeling down, he took her hand in his. The sun shone on his pale skin, making it glow. He looked like an angel, and in his eyes she could see reflections of herself. "It's me, Miki. Really."
"G-Godzilla?" Miki squeaked out. The familiar knot in her throat returned. Hearing that voice hurt.
The attractive young man nodded and smiled at her--even his smile was beautiful. He tugged gently on her hand, "Come with me...I can prove it."
Miki feared this was all a dream. Nothing this surreal could ever be reality. She let him help her up. Her dress sparkled like dew under the sun's rays--even the dirty parts around the hem. The man led her down into the basement, sat himself at the piano and played the familiar chords of Un Giorno Per Noi. When he opened his mouth and Godzilla's familiar voice came from it to fill the room, Miki knew this wasn't a dream. Dreams always ended just before the best part.
Passion filled the young man's face. He leaned his head back as the last note left his lips. There were tears clinging to his eyelashes.
Miki collapsed onto the bench next to him. Her hands reached up, touching his stubble and running her fingers through his beautiful, soft hair. His dark eyes gazed at her with nothing but love in their bottomless depths.
"I was sitting right here when I fell in love with you. At exactly four thirty-two in the afternoon on January eleventh of the year two thousand and seven, actually," he said, looking sheepish. "It's pretty geeky of me to remember the exact date and time, but..."
Miki giggled, putting a finger on his lips. "I remember that I was about to do this..."
She leaned in and kissed him. Slowly, gently. He felt so soft, human and real, and he was an amazing kisser.
"Josh." He said, breathless.
He smiled at her, so sweet and endearing. "My real name is Josh."
"Josh." Miki whispered against his mouth.
Josh stroked her cheek and kissed her again, passionately. Then he pulled back to rest his forehead against hers. "Man, I've wanted to do that for so long."
"Me, too." She sighed happily and slipped her arms around his neck, playing with his silky hair. "So how did you end up as Godzilla in the first place?"
Josh sobered a little. He bit his bottom lip as he closed the lid over the piano keys. "It's a really long story, Miki. Can I tell you over breakfast?"
"That's fine. Now um..." Miki stood up and turned around, looking over her shoulder at him. "Could you please undo all these buttons? Naoto is probably sending out a search party for this dress, and I don't want to be in it when he finds it."
Josh laughed and his whole face went into it--and Miki was quite taken with how his eyes squinted into crescents. He gladly helped her out of the constricting white garment. They shared the sheet when they dragged the dress upstairs, tossed it over the couch and rushed into the kitchen to make pancakes.
While their breakfast cooked, they stood in the doorway, holding each other close in the sunlight. Outside, the fresh-from-a-storm garden gleamed like new. Or maybe they were the new ones, like Adam and Eve, reborn again to see everything and each other through different eyes.
"Hey," said Josh.
"Hm?" Miki looked up.
He put his arm around her and kissed the top of her head.
"Will you be my girl?" Pink spread along his pale cheeks. The shy, slow way he blinked his eyes and the puppy dog look hadn't changed even though his appearance had. "I mean...uh..."
She laughed. He was cute when he blushed.
"Yes, Josh. I will."
Josh's face brightened. He touched her belly where their child would grow and hugged her close once again. Miki melted happily into his embrace.
All was right in the world.
Last edited by Cyndi; June 22nd, 2010 at 12:24 PM.
Re: Beauty and the Beast
June 22nd, 2010, 04:46 AM
Re: Beauty and the Beast
"Home invasion isn't your style."
"Oh, hush, Belvera, we aren't harming anything."
"Besides, you're the one who wanted to see what he looks like now."
"Ugh, Lora, I swear..."
A tiny dragon, followed by a miniature moth, drifted through the open front window. They flew into the living room and landed on the coffee table. Three women--one dressed in red, the other in blue and a third in black--climbed off their noble steeds.
The once-blank walls of the home were now alive with photographs. Above the TV hung a grand wedding photo in a gold frame--Miki in a sleek, strapless ivory A-line gown with a short veil and Josh wearing a dapper black tuxedo as they kissed beneath a white gazebo by the water. Hideo stood off to the side, holding a baby in his arms, and he had tears on his face. Tucked down into the corner of the wedding photo was a picture of Miki clad in a pale blue tube dress, proudly displaying her round, pregnant belly.
On another wall, an image of a newborn baby girl lying on the chest of a very tired-looking Miki, who rested comfortably in a hospital bed. Beside it, Josh grinned like a fool as he held the tiny infant close to his heart. She had Miki's Japanese features and Josh's long eyelashes. Photos showing her growing into a toddler revealed she also inherited her father's playful smile.
The baby's birth certificate was framed and hung on the wall by the kitchen. Her first name was Megumi.
Two Grammy awards sat on either side of the plasma TV set. The wall above the sliding glass back door was decorated with plaques indicating gold, silver and platinum records.
Moll startled at a crash behind her. Belvera had tripped over a paper clip and landed on the remote. Lora looked up as the TV flicked on.
"And now, for his first public appearance in decades...G!"
A red curtain rose to reveal Josh in a charcoal gray suit that enhanced his tall, lean form. Cheers and clapping filled the speakers.
"Look at all of you beautiful people out there!" Josh exclaimed. "Are you ready to make some music?"
The audience erupted again. For a moment, the camera focused on Miki, who sat in the front with Megumi in her lap.
As Josh began to sing You Are Loved
, the camera panned over the crowd. They were all children from the Make A Wish foundation.
"Okay, so he's handsome." Belvera muttered, sitting down on the edge of the remote. She couldn't help but tap her foot in time to the song's upbeat tempo.
"Yes, now that he's learned his lesson," said Moll. She adjusted the skirt of her red gown. "It's a shame you missed their wedding, Belvera. Mothra flew over and dusted the beach with white rose petals. Nobody knew it was her except for them."
"I was checking out the Harajuku district," growled the fairy in black. "I had to make Garu-Garu look stylish, you know."
"You and steam punk," Moll said, smiling at her sister.
"Shut up!" Belvera snapped.
Lora knelt to examine the Elle
magazine left open next to the remote. The glossy page displayed Miki on the runway, modeling a cute yellow sunflower print sundress and carrying a parasol shaped like a sunflower. Right there, in the front row, Josh looked on with a smile.
~Lora, the others aren't listening.~ Mothra's voice gently touched her mind. ~You should inform them that the concert is tape delayed, and the happy couple is headed home.~
I will, thank you, Mothra
. Lora raised her head. "Moll, Belvera! Mothra says this program is a tape delay." She hopped away from the magazine when Belvera pushed it shut. "They're on their way home. We have to go."
"Aww, just when it was getting good," Belvera groaned. She climbed onto Garu-Garu, giving him a good kick with her heels to get him flying. The little dragon squawked.
Moll and Lora climbed onto Fairy. The miniature moth chirped as it rose into the air. All three sisters slipped out the front window in the same moment Miki opened the door. Lora glanced over her shoulder and concentrated. The TV shut off. She smiled slightly before Fairy took off to join Belvera and Mothra in the sky.
"Meg is one sleepy girl." Josh whispered.
"Riding in the car always does it." Miki smiled and added, "I'll take her upstairs."
He kissed the toddler's cheek and then kissed Miki's. "Sure thing."
The sun was going down when Josh stepped outside to stroll along the beach. He still wore the suit from the concert. The wind ruffled his dark hair while he moved the toes of his shoes around in the sand.
He had a wife and daughter now. It made him smile to think about them--and how they wouldn't be here if he hadn't been Godzilla. He spent so long paying for his ego and hating others because he hated what he'd become. So much time wasted...and with Miki's help was slowly catching up.
How could he be so selfish? So arrogant? So ugly?
~Enjoying your new eyesight?~
Josh looked up when a shadow crossed his face.
"Yeah. Thanks, Mothra..." He whispered.
~You're welcome, little man.~ Mothra chirped, a smile in her telepathic voice. ~Stay out of trouble, all right?~
Mothra's antennae twitched and she crossed all six of her legs like arms. Her beautiful blue eyes shimmered in amusement. ~Hmph.~ She flapped her wings. ~Please don't call me that. It makes me feel old.~
Josh laughed, watching the glowing, multicolored goddess transform into millions of tiny moths that rushed off towards the western horizon. Miki joined him a mere moment after the last sparkle disappeared. Megumi toddled out on the heels of her mother.
"Look, it's the little one." Josh widened his stance so he could walk like he did as Godzilla. "Rawwwwr! I'm gonna eat you!"
Squealing happily, Megumi ran for the safety of Miki's legs. Miki smacked Josh's shoulder. The family laughed.
Mothra saw Josh hug Miki from behind, and they both gazed into the sunset while Megumi played in the sand near their feet. The moth goddess nodded in approval and continued on her way. The three human forms vanished behind a cloud, which shrank into one of many, and then the whole blue Earth glistened beside the diamond-white sun.
Her work here was done.
FINALE VIDEO: You Are Loved
View it here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6tI1TGyvYgA
Thank you, Donny, for your inspiration.
Last edited by Cyndi; June 22nd, 2010 at 12:25 PM.
Re: Beauty and the Beast
March 5th, 2011, 07:15 PM
Kaiju Forum Novice
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: In Canada living with a bunch of beavers.
Re: Beauty and the Beast
This is such a beautiful story.I always loved the Beauty and the Beast story,and this was probably one of the best adaptations of the story.I love how everything flows nicely,from the humor to the mushy lovey stuff ^^ Great story yet again Cyndi.
Re: Beauty and the Beast
August 11th, 2012, 02:01 AM
Re: Beauty and the Beast
This reply is REALLY late, but...thank you! I had so much fun writing this story and sometimes I can't believe it was me who wrote it!
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