Magia Record Story Memory Drops

From Puella Magi Wiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search

This page or section is a stub, and needs expansion. You can help Puella Magi Wiki by expanding it.

Memory Drops.jpg

Part 1

Summary by bigscarythings

Memory Drops opens with a prologue summarizing the Mikoto & Hanna arc so far - essentially, Hanna is a rogue magical girl who uses the power of suggestion magic to manipulate people and Witches into spreading misfortune and calamity. Among her victims were girls like Nanaka Tokiwa or the Azalea Sisters, who had their lives derailed or ruined by Hanna's actions, and who came to work together to uncover and defeat whoever was sowing chaos in Kamihama. Eventually, they cornered Hanna, who committed suicide by shattering her own Soul Gem.

What little did the magical girls know was that Hanna was not a lone operator, but worked alongside Mikoto Sena, the remnant will of the Mirror Witch who dwelled in Hanna, seeking Kamihama's destruction. In truth, however, Hanna had sought to destroy what Mikoto hated so that she would no longer be bound to the will of destruction. She wanted Mikoto to be free, to learn that allowing oneself to be consumed by hatred and despair results only in defeat and failure, and to find hope and be reborn.

In the end, however, Mikoto rejected hope and committed herself to destroying the world. That ambition failed with the ending of Arc 2, leaving Mikoto dwelling within Iroha. With Puella Historia having ended and Iroha's promise to Mikoto going unfulfilled, Mikoto has made a choice - no matter what stands in her way, she *will* find and bring Hanna back...

The event proper begins in the past, in the days when Mikoto and Hanna were Magical Girls before Mikoto had become a Witch. In those days, Mikoto recalls, as soon as school was let out, she would race across town to the cafe where she and Hanna always met up. Mikoto always fussed with her appearance using a compact mirror along the way, wanting to be perfect for Hanna. When she saw Hanna waiting for her by the window, she got caught up in Hanna's gaze that she forgot to call out to Hanna...but Hanna knew full well that Mikoto was there. Hanna turned to her and mouthed out - "Found you."

Hanna was always able to find Mikoto - even after Mikoto had turned into a Witch, Hanna had known Mikoto was still there somehow, dwelling within Hanna. While Mikoto thought Hanna had been the one to save her life, Hanna had once told her it was the other way around. Hanna had been about to attempt suicide, using her magic to break her Soul Gem, but instead, Hanna's magic was channeled to Mikoto, bringing the latter back as a sort of ghost. With Mikoto there, Hanna said she had no reason to die anymore, and told her - "I'm really glad I didn't die! ...Please don't leave me alone ever again."

Mikoto's reminiscence goes bitter as she recalls that it wasn't she who left Hanna - but the other way around. Hanna committed suicide so that she could bring hope to Mikoto and the world, but Mikoto didn't want any of that. She just wanted Hanna. Even if the Mirror Witch had devoured the world, even though the APS is now saving all Magical Girls, none of that matters without Hanna. All of this hope is only making Mikoto even more painfully aware of what she's lacking. All she wants is Hanna - to touch her, hold her, take her hand, to come to a world where there's nobody else but them. And with that...she makes up her mind.

The days pass, and Mikoto stores up her magic while within Iroha, until winter arrives. In the weeks before Christmas, after the events of Puella Historia, Mikazuki Villa decorates for the holidays, where Mikoto - after a long period of silence - finally speaks to Iroha. Iroha, wanting to help Mikoto find hope again, listens intently as Mikoto talks about how she's never had a good Christmas. Mikoto says she wants to see what a happy Christmas looks like, with a big party, lots of guests, beautiful decorations, delicious food, presents to exchange...

Mikoto isn't lying, per se. She really does want these things. She's just not being honest about who she wants them with. But Iroha doesn't know that, and after conveying Mikoto's words to the others, they all agree to help set up the best Christmas party ever. She pushes Iroha to arrange for a big Mikazuki shopping trip for decorations, but then, on the day of the trip, she has a sudden need to visit the Magia Record, meaning Iroha can't join her loved ones... As it turns out, Touka is busy that day as well, leaving just Nemu in the Record. This is when Mikoto launches her plan: "The only memories I'll ever want are the ones with Hanna... That's why...I decided to take it back: My hope."

Using her built-up transplant magic, Mikoto hijacks Nemu's body. Iroha demands Mikoto to explain - does she plan to wreak havoc again? No, Mikoto says - she's been a very good girl for all this time! Doesn't she deserve a gift from Santa? Doesn't she deserve hope rather than despair? Given that Santa won't be able to find her, however, that just means Mikoto needs to acquire her own gift. She's going to use Nemu's powers to find Hanna again.

Penning together some Uwasas, Mikoto is able to materialize Hanna again, resembling the Uwasa forms the Magical Girls took on in the Arc 2 finale. Iroha reconizes what's going on, and Mikoto warns her to back off, or else she'll harm Nemu's body. Iroha tries desperately to talk Mikoto down, saying Mikoto needs to accept the past, let go, and move forward, and that this isn't the real Hanna, but a copy forged from the Record and Mikoto's own projections.

Mikoto refuses to hear a word. She uses the next Uwasa to create a proper body for herself and transplants herself into it. With some testing, she confirms that she has full control over the Uwasa - just as she'd designed! With that, she's ready to whisk off a very confused and disoriented Hanna into their own little world...

Until Nemu strikes, harming Hanna. She and Mikoto fight, Nemu trying to explain again that the Rumor isn't real, just a hollow, meaningless construct. She reads off the Rumor that Mikoto created for Uwasa Hanna, noting that while the Rumor is based on the real Hanna and her story, it was not born of free will and does not capture her true nature. Mikoto shouts back, saying that as long as Hanna remembers their days together, then she's the real Hanna - "I want my dear friend to be alive! That's all I want!" Those words seem to trigger something in Uwasa Hanna...

In the meantime, Nemu and Iroha debate over what to do about this predicament. Nemu wants to tear out the pages for the Uwasas that Mikoto created and simply be done with it. Iroha, however, knows that this is Mikoto's last hope. If they kill Hanna right now, even if she's just an Uwasa, it will be as good as killing Mikoto. Nemu doesn't seem to like it much herself, but she's still willing to go through with it - but Mikoto acts faster, with her own Uwasa kicking in, creating a facsimile of the Mirrors Labyrinth and entrapping everyone present with technicolor clones of Mikoto, who act as the Uwasa's Familiars.

Around this point, Mikoto admits that Hanna very much isn't acting like her normal self. It turns out that Hanna doesn't even remember Mikoto, even as Mikoto tries reminding Hanna of their memories together. During the commotion, it turns out that Nemu has cut herself off as Mikoto's power source, meaning that Hanna and Mikoto only have a limited time to operate - the only viable solution that doesn't involve deleting the Uwasas. Iroha tries again to plead with Mikoto, telling her that they'll find a way to make Mikoto's dream come true...

But Hanna won't hear a word of it. Acting like she remembers everything, she strikes out at Iroha, telling her not to lay a finger on Mikoto. A close match ensues between Iroha and Nemu versus Hanna, with Hanna ultimately coming out on top - but only because Iroha and Nemu are holding back, she admits. She can't even cast her suggestion magic given how quickly they move. Mikoto notes that Hanna is supposed to have overwriting magic, but realizes that she's unintentionally rewritten Hanna's magic to be suggestion.

This is another indicator that this isn't the real Hanna, Iroha says. It's not a real person, but a projection of Mikoto's own whims and desires, the barest echo of the original Hanna and her feelings. Mikoto tells her to shut up, she doesn't know anything! But Iroha, having maintained the Magia Record, does know what Hanna was like; Mikoto snaps at her again for snooping. Hanna joins in, dismissing Iroha's words - nobody chooses to be born, and she had enough of this "feelings" crap. She tells Iroha to eat shit, because she doesn't want Iroha's pity, but her hostility. Hanna ain't the good guy, after all - she's a villain.

With that, Mikoto and Hanna whisk themselves away, leaving Iroha and Nemu lost in the Labyrinth. All Iroha can do is hunker down and guard Nemu as they try to find a way out...

A brief aside takes us to Nanaka and Kako, on a tour of Kamihama to try out tasty new noodle dishes, when Nanaka's magic kicks in. Unfortunately, the tour needs to be canceled, Nanaka says - she has a terrible feeling that a new battle is looming at hand...

We cut back to Hanna and Mikoto, now free in the real world. They shift back to their civilian outfits, and Hanna asks what their gameplan is. It's quite simple, Mikoto says - they're going to have a happy Christmas together. She waxes on about how they'll decorate the room, have a traditional Christmas turkey, make Hanna dress up like Santa and exchange gifts, and have the whole day filled with shining, beautiful memories...

Deep down, they both know that this will be their final memory together. They're on limited time as it is, and Nemu can change her mind at any point and end their existences at a whim. It's impossible for them to truly be together...but Mikoto wants this chance anyway. Hanna agrees - they'll run to the ends of the earth together if that's what it takes.

"You won't leave me?" Mikoto asks. Hanna counters with, "When have I ever left you?" Mikoto gets upset and brings up Hanna's suicide; Hanna plays it off as a joke (but it seems like she genuinely didn't remember until Mikoto brought it up), and then suddenly recalls Nanaka Tokiwa being there too...

Mikoto's jealousy flares up again and she grumbles, but Hanna defuses the situation by proposing that they have a trip down memory lane before they bail out of Kamihama. Mikoto is thrown off by this request, but agrees to go along with it. Just then, Hanna shuts her eyes with a flinch; when Mikoto worries, Hanna brushes her off, saying she just got dizzy for a sec.

They then proceed on their tour, visiting their usual cafe and Mikoto's old school, along with all of their other old crime scenes. As they travel, Mikoto reflects on their sins, all the terrible things they brought about. It stands that they should meet with terrible fates in turn. But if Mikoto could have just one's to be buried alive and suffocate in her memories with Hanna, at the end of a world where no one exists, the very final moment of a most wonderful Christmas.

It is then that they pass by Mikoto's old apartment complex, which triggers another memory in Mikoto - her mother telling her "Found you." Mikoto is suddenly very disoriented - she hadn't meant to come here, and has no memory of walking here. Hanna is confused, so Mikoto tries explaining that this was her old home, her real home. She'd never taken Hanna to see the genuine article.

After a pause, Mikoto asks if Hanna likes Christmas. Both of them hate it, actually. Neither has any good memories of that day. With that, Hanna tells Mikoto to go inside and say whatever it is she needs to say, but Mikoto bitterly says there's no point - her mom thinks she's dead, and doesn't even live there anymore. She stews in her negative emotions when suddenly Hanna collapses, unconscious, with a dark, hideous substance in the air flowing into Hanna. Mikoto quickly tries to figure out what's going on. She can't be Witching out, since they're no longer Magical Girls.

She soon lands on the Rumor she'd written, realizing the wording of it, that Hanna's rebellion is "built on" her resentment towards society, means that Hanna herself is absorbing anger and hatred. This had not been Mikoto's intention at all; she'd worded it in that manner to give Hanna memories of their time together, but it's all gone wrong.

She doesn't want this for Hanna. She knows full well what it's like, having been under a Witch's influence herself - it makes you obsessed with the will to destroy, overriding your memories of everything else, even the things you love. She doesn't want Hanna to forget her. She doesn't want Hanna to undergo the torment she did. Mikoto, however, can handle it...and by using her transplant magic, augmented with the Uwasa's powers, she's able to absorb the malice. It's a painful, unpleasant transfer that nearly overwhelms her - she wonders if this malice is a source of power in itself - and then the power suddenly vanishes, as if siphoned away somewhere...

And she hears the Uwasa's voice: "I will make this my power."

We cut to the rooftop of the apartment complex, where Hanna suddenly snaps awake. Mikoto grumbles about having to lug Hanna up here on her back, but Hanna presses Mikoto for info on what happened. Mikoto plays dumb, and Hanna says fine, she won't pry - but if Mikoto can't handle this on her own, Hanna is more than willing to help. Mikoto plays dumb again, and tells Hanna to get some sleep. Hanna says she's in pain, but does eventually fall asleep.

While she's asleep, Mikoto reflects on the past day or so, noting that there are gaps in her memories. She reasons out that the Uwasa she's fused with has been lying dormant, but is now gradually starting to awaken, taking over her body every now and then. When Mikoto's memories get hazy, those are the times when the Uwasa is taking control. Transferring the malice out of Hanna is feeding the Uwasa more power. Mikoto can suppress the Uwasa with her own magic, but this is very bad - she's already using magic in order to keep the Mirrors Labyrinth Rumor online for entrapping Iroha and Nemu. It's all leading up to Mikoto's magic being tapped out much faster than she'd anticipated. At this rate, with her memories being obscured by the Uwasa, she may forget Hanna altogether.

Aloud, she utters - "I'm scared... I'm scared, Hanna..." She begs to not forget Hanna, even as she keeps absorbing the malice away from her - because the only thing worse than forgetting Hanna is to have Hanna forget about her.

The next day, the girls rush to the train station in the late afternoon. Mikoto has a 1,000 yen bill in hand; Hanna side-eyes her for it, but Mikoto quickly clarifies that she's not a thief (stealing seems to be a moral red line for her, given that her parents had stolen from her too); she had this in one of her secret hiding spots. Normally, she'd just use some Uwasa magic to get their way, but they need to conserve their magic to survive, so they have to do things the normal way.

To herself, Mikoto notes that she needs to keep this secret. She knows that if Hanna finds out her true nature as a Rumor that gathers malice, and that Mikoto is absorbing it to protect her, Hanna will surrender herself immediately, if not try to eliminate her Rumor herself. Mikoto swears again that she'll protect Hanna no matter what it costs.

As they go to buy tickets, Mikoto is confronted by Kanagi (in her maid outfit, like she's rushed here from the cafe). Mikoto realizes that Touka has come back to the Record to find Nemu and Iroha AWOL. Kanagi demands that Mikoto explain their whereabouts. In response, Mikoto asks Kanagi, "Is it right to bring the dead back to life?" Kanagi is taken aback, but after consideration, decides it's not a good idea. Mikoto dismisses her, and Hanna drags Mikoto away; Kanagi recognizes her, and Hanna tells her, "Don't forget about us!" as she incapcitates Kanagi.

Mikoto shoves a ticket into Hanna's hands as they race to board the train; in a funny bit, Mikoto's shoes fall off along the way and she wants to renact Cinderella with Hanna, but Hanna drags her down to earth and makes her put her shoes on and board the train.

Once aboard, with the doors sealing, Mikoto reflects again that as always, they're racing towards a dead end. But even so...everything feels so vibrant and bright. She feels so happy, and doesn't even understand why. Even so, if Hanna is happy, too...then Mikoto can endure any pain for her sake.

As they watch the sunset, Hanna speaks up. She's happy to run away with Mikoto. She's so happy just to be with Mikoto. After their crime scene tour, she knows now what Mikoto means to her, and will stand by her side, and her side alone.

At this, Mikoto shyly asks to hold Hanna's hand, given that they weren't able to touch each other while Mikoto was a ghost. While Hanna believes her hands were forever tainted by her wish, Mikoto insists they're beautiful. Even if the whole world thinks they look ugly, that just means they're beautiful to Mikoto alone. She likes it that way. And so they roll on into the evening, hand-in-hand, the train rattling and rocking, two girls leaving with their dearly beloved...

We get a brief aside with Nanaka and Kako again, arriving at the train station to team up with some others to hunt for Iroha and Nemu. There, they come across Kanagi, recovering from her encounter with Hanna and Mikoto...

Time passes. Mikoto and Hanna move across the country, traveling north. Hanna uses her suggestion magic to secure them lodgings whenever they need to take a break. Hanna picks up odd jobs to save up money now and then - they need money for Christmas presents, after all. Mikoto is unable to get a job, however, not wanting to risk revealing her identity to prepare a resume or get an interview. Having spent her money on tickets, she has just shy over 100 yen - nothing that can afford a worthy gift for Hanna...until she suddenly remembers.

As covered in Mikoto's MGS, back when they were Magical Girls together, they kept an exchange diary together. Mikoto bought them matching pens to use - thankfully, she can still recall that Hanna had a purple one with a star design. That's the present, then - she can well afford it, and it's a meaningful gift for Hanna.

Just as she decides this, Hanna breaks her out of her reverie, saying she got them a house to borrow for the night - and Mikoto a little gift. It's a giveaway packet of snowdrop seeds from the florist, flowers to be planted in winter that bloom after the snow thaws. Mikoto loves flowers, so this is a perfect gift for her...and it makes her feel pathetic. Hanna is handling these circumstances so well, basically keeping their entire runaway mission going, and Mikoto is just being useless and helpless. She *needs* to get a gift for Hanna to repay her. But even as she starts looking for a gift, she can't find it...and as time passes, she starts forgetting her purpose altogether.

As they keep hoofing it north, though, Mikoto decides to plant the snowdrop seeds as they walk. She has a vision of the snow melting, their footsteps vanishing, but the snowdrops blooming in their wake, tracing their path...

They run into trouble along the way. Mikoto is constantly met with suspicion, even having police called on her. When that happens, they just keep running. Her Uwasa keeps questioning her will - why do all of this? Why resist? So she can spend a happy Christmas with Hanna, Mikoto says.

Here, we delve into her memories. She's only ever had one proper Christmas - the one when she was just seven years old. Her father was a deadbeat and her mom was always working late, never home. Mikoto was so sick and ashamed of her circumstances that one Christmas day, she ran onto the rooftop of the apartment complex and hid. It didn't matter if she was there or not, because her parents had decided she didn't deserve to have anything - not love, not a good, happy life. Not a proper Christmas. Nothing. If she hid, they would never come to find her.

Except she was proven wrong. Her mom realized what had happened and took the day off work, forced her husband to come home, and got fried chicken and cake for Christmas. She went and found Mikoto - hence the "Found you, Mikoto" memory from earlier. And even though the food was soggy and undone, Mikoto was so happy she cried.

From that year on, every Christmas, she made a tradition of hiding, hoping to be found again. And it never happened again. Not even once. And so that Christmas from when she was seven was the worst Christmas she'd ever had, for lifting her hopes so high with the bare minimum, and letting them be shattered.

But Hanna - Hanna always finds her. Hanna would never abandon her. Hanna is her hero. She *needs* to get Hanna that pen.

Listening to all this, the Uwasa suggests - why not draw on her magic, then? Copy the Uwasa's Familiars, and send them into the world to find the pen she's so keen on. Mikoto, delirious, agrees - if it's for Hanna's happiness, then using a little magic will be okay... But...she strains her memory, and asks - "Who are you again?" The Uwasa indulges her - "I am the me who will eventually become you."

Mikoto snaps awake. All of that was a dream...(or was it?) She looks around, realizing Hanna is gone, and has a breakdown until Hanna returns. She clings onto Hanna the moment she returns, sobbing into her. Hanna gently chides her for acting like a kid, but Mikoto says she *is* a kid, really; she doesn't want to grow up. Hanna is taken aback, and promises she won't leave with Mikoto's permission anymore.

As an apology, she has another gift for Mikoto - a proper pair of shoes. She's never gotten over that incident where Mikoto's shoes fell off at the station, so these will work much better for her. She managed to get them free by working for the local shoe store. She adds that it might as well be Mikoto's Christmas present.

Mikoto freezes - she still doesn't have Hanna's present yet. Hanna, oblivious, goes on about the shoe store, until a news report on the TV interrupts them with a story about a woman randomly found collaped and unconscious, in critical condition at the local entertainment district. Hanna remarks that there's been a spate of these cases lately...

But Mikoto can only focus on Hanna's present. She decides to make Familiar copies and send them out to find the pen. Confident in her success, she fantasizes about the wonderful Christmas that's soon to come, so excited to see how happy Hanna will be...

We cut over to Iroha and Nemu, still trapped in the Labyrinth. Nemu is able to track Mikoto's condition, confirming she's not suffering or in direct pain, but knowing the Uwasa will soon seize control if Mikoto keeps summoning Familiars. Just then, Nanaka arrives in the Labyrinth to rescue them, and to demand an explanation. Before Nemu gets into it, though, Nanaka has one pressing question she needs answered: "Is Hanna Sarasa still alive?"

Finally, Part 1 closes with a chapter from Hanna's perspective. It opens with a grim scene of her childhood, her father locking her out on the balcony in her underwear in the dead of a freezing Christmas night. What stuck with Hanna the most was seeing her mother gazing on her sympathetically from the warm, light-filled living room...and turning away from her just as Hanna tried asking her for help.

Hanna didn't want to be a person like that - someone who turns a blind eye to evil. She was going to be someone who helped those in need.

In Mizuna, she tried stopping bullies, only to be bullied herself. Even the kids she rescued ended up ignoring her and turning on her too. Eventually, Kyubey came knocking, and that culminated in her wish to erase all of her bullies from existence, leaving them only in her memory. She could no longer be a hero; she was now a villain.

But hearing Mikoto's words - "I want my dear friend to be alive!" - "I'm scared, Hanna..." - the fact that someone out there cares about her, that there's someone who considers her a dear friend, that there's someone who needs her help right now...Hanna will answer that call. Even if it kills her, she won't ignore Mikoto, so desperately in need. She'll never, ever be like her mother.

In the present, late one night, Hanna waits at home for Mikoto to return... Mikoto is very late indeed. She grumbles about Mikoto begging Hanna not to leave her alone, but here she is, abandoning Hanna like it's nothing...even though Hanna's gotten their early Christmas party all set up. But Hanna thinks she's not in a position to speak up against Mikoto, and so she waits. Mikoto took this trip in order to protect Hanna, after all... Hanna feels so guilty for putting Mikoto through all of this; feels like a coward exploiting Mikoto's kindness.

When she's with Mikoto, every day feels beautiful, shining, full of life. Where there was only dread, there is now hope. Hanna starts breaking down in tears - "I’m sorry, Sena… I feel like I’m no good without you… So don’t leave me… Stay next to me and smile…"

A breaking news report suddenly cuts through the night. It's another incident of a pedestrian left unconscious in the middle of the city, in critical condition... Hanna can't help but panic. There's some psycho going around attacking people, and Mikoto is still out there--- While she logically knows that Mikoto is literally built differently from muggles and therefore isn't really at risk of harm, she can't help but panic. Her heart can't help but feel so uneasy.

It's then that a Familiar appears to her. Hanna doesn't get it at first, but the Familiar gestures her to follow. It takes her to a shop in town, drenched in darkness... Something is very, very wrong. But Hanna must know what it is.

She creeps into the shop, a broken voice whispering in the dark, a presence stirring in the black. Hanna shouts for Mikoto a few times, and finally sees her standing among the stationery in one corner. Mikoto's body is covered in something thick and dark and sticky; something Hanna can't really see in all the darkness. Mikoto finally notices Hanna, staring for a second...and finally recognizes her. "I was going to write your name on my I wouldn't forget it."

She shows the pen she was going to use, explaining she'd wanted to find that matching pen from way back when as a gift...but no matter how hard she looked, she couldn't find the real thing, just this knockoff - one with a moon motif rather than stars. She just wanted Hanna to be happy...

Everything clicks together for Hanna. Mikoto's strange behavior, how she'd forget where she was or what she was doing, all these incidents with the critically injured people - that was Mikoto all along. She's used too much magic, and she's been pushed too far, crossing a horizon she can't retreat from. Mikoto's behavior will grow even more erratic and dangerous with time, and considering how dangerous she already is...

Hanna was determined to not let Mikoto die. Were they caught, she wouldn't made it so Hanna would be the only casualty. But now...

She tells Mikoto - "Don't be lonely. I'll follow you soon." Mikoto misunderstands - "You want to play tag? But I need to find your pen first!" After all, she wants Hanna to have a happy Christmas too. She deserves only good memories. She'll rewrite all of Hanna's bad memories...because Hanna is her hero.

Hanna, deep down, has always believed in justice. Even after her wish, she wanted the world to have some hope in it, for good to ultimately overcome evil.

It's time she puts an end to that unfulfilled dream. She can only be on Mikoto's side. She'll be who she wants to be - because that's what being a Magical Girl is about. She'll protect Mikoto - even though she doesn't remember anything about her.

Aloud, she remarks that Mikoto's hands must be cold - "Lemme warm them up." Mikoto protests, saying her hands are dirty; a pile of sand came crashing down on her, and that's how she found this pen all of a sudden... Hanna insists that they look beautiful to her. It doesn't matter what anyone says.

And to herself, she thinks - "I've decided to be perfectly evil for her sake."

Part 2