Magical Knight Lune XY: My HOMIE Swooped Me off My Feet, and Now I Think I Might Be in LOVE?!
A week came and went, and I found myself outside the entrance to Ten Flags, hesitating to go inside. Dozens of people made their way past me, excitement lighting up their faces.
It was the perfect day to be outside. The last remnants of winter had dissipated as the sun shone brightly, bringing its warmth to all. Not a single cloud in the sky was there to block its radiance.
Yet I couldn’t shake the sense that I was headed to disaster, despite the weather and atmosphere being anything but. Afterall, today was the day Daniel and Lune were to meet with Jack for a group outing.
How the heck was I gonna get away with being two people at the same time?!
Gripped in my hand were three tickets: one for Daniel, one for Lune, and one for the friend I had stupidly made up, which only made the situation worse. I spent every moment of the past week coming up with ideas to resolve my predicament.
My first knee-jerk reaction was to call Jack up with an excuse for why I couldn’t make it after all. But then who would be the one to cancel? Lune or Daniel? Either way, it would be a huge bummer for Jack. He went out of his way to procure these tickets so that his best friend could meet his girlfriend and her best friend. The last thing I wanted Jack to do was to waste his efforts.
Realizing there was no way out of going, I decided to go with the ‘ol switcheroo plan. I would have to change back and forth between Lune and Daniel the entire time. Not the most original plan for this kind of scenario, sure. But it would have to do. Most rides are two-seaters per car, anyway, so it should be possible to get away with it. Hopefully.
As for my non-existent friend, I was gonna have to lie and tell Jack they couldn’t make it. The other night I briefly thought about the idea of asking Belliney disguise herself and pretend to be the friend, but that would only complicate things even more.
That, and I wanted it to just be Jack and me anyway.
I arrived at the park as Lune, wearing a white ruffle sundress with a matching white sun hat. Belliney insisted that I wear makeup. Nothing major. Just a small amount of blush and pink lip gloss that matched my hair. A small handbag also hung across my shoulder, where the park tickets were safely tucked away.
Despite my nerves, I was still very much aware that this was a date. I did my best to embrace a positive attitude and allow the park’s atmosphere to fill me with excitement. This might be my only chance to go to an amusement park with Jack. Knowing his luck, he’ll somehow lose this job within a week. Psyching myself up, I put one foot forward, placed both hands on my hips, and promised myself that today was going to be fun, no matter what!
“Um, excuse me?” a voice behind me asked.
I turned around and saw a young couple who I figured to be in college.
“You wouldn’t happen to be Magical Knight Lune, would you?” asked the young woman.
“Uh, yes! Yes, I am! Is there something I could-”
The young woman squealed in excitement, startling me. “See! I told you!” she exclaimed, looking to the young man to confirm his mutual excitement. The woman looked at me and continued, “I saw you standing there and went ‘That can’t be Lune, can it?’ I almost didn’t recognize you without the signature armor! Ah! Can I get a picture with you?!”
I nodded and smiled. “Sure! I’d be happy to!”
The young woman quickly pulled out her phone and handed it to the young man. Then she scooted up to me and put one arm around my shoulder, pulling me in for a side hug. The two of us made peace signs with our hands and smiled.
“Thank you so much!!!” she cheered, looking at the photo on her phone. “Say, this might be asking too much, but are you able to transform into your armor as well? I’d love to get another photo of you in a battle pose!”
“Eh, sorry,” I apologized. “In fiction magical girls can instantly transform into their armor, but in real life…”
That was a lie, of course. The truth was that I left my armor at home for convenience. Since I wanted to dress nicely as both Daniel and Lune for the outing, I didn’t have the “inventory space” to lug my armor around. I may have the ability to instantly change outfits, but I still have to have both outfits with me during the transition. I also left my magic pouch at home, since it didn’t fit with my outfit.
Honestly, the last thing I needed was to draw attention in my signature armor. Though even without it, I stood out from the crowd anyway, what with the flashy pink hair and all.
“Aw. I understand,” she said as she slipped her phone back into her purse. “Judging from the look of things, I take it you’re out here on a date?”
“I…” I murmured, caught off guard. She wasn’t wrong, of course, but did it look that obvious?
“Aww, you’re so adorable!” she said, squeezing me to death as she gave me another hug. “No need to be so bashful!”
“R-right,” I answered.
“Whoever they are, they sure are lucky to be dating Magical Knight Lune!” she winked. “Isn’t that right, babe?”
The young man, startled by the question, debated on how to answer it. She had straight up tossed him a verbal live grenade.
“Yeah,” he said, scratching the back of his neck as he glanced away. “If I had the chance, I’d totally love to date a magical girl.”
Kaboom! The grenade exploded, resulting in a swift kick to his shin.
“Ouch! The heck was that for!?” he cried in pain.
“You’re saying you’d rather date a magical girl than me, huh?” the young woman glared.
“Th-that’s not what I said at all!” he argued.
The young woman wrapped her arms around the young man’s arms and bent it backward, causing him pain. “Good luck to you, Lune! I’m rooting for you!” she said with a smile, still bending the poor guy’s arm as she led him into the park.
“Thanks…” I said, waving goodbye.
Couldn’t help but feel sorry for the poor guy. There was no getting out of that one.
I checked the small, pink wristwatch that I had chosen to compliment my outfit.
“1:30 PM,” I said, reading the time allowed.
It was still half an hour before Jack’s shift would be over. I sent a text letting him know I was there and proceeded inside, figuring he wouldn’t mind.
The inside of the park was packed full of people. Again, I wasn’t too surprised, but it was definitely way busier than I expected.
The front of the park featured a large garden full of flowers in bloom. Banners and streamers with pastel colors decorated the light posts and fences bordering the flowers. A pathway cut through the garden, which led to a large fountain, featuring a stone statue of the Ten Flags mascot: a large, white, cute cartoon rabbit named Cottonball. The rabbit statue held up a flower, which spouted a small stream of water. Dozens of people were gathered in the large, open space around the fountain. With a notable landmark at its center, the general vicinity seemed like an obvious meet-up area for guests.
I approached the fountain and took a seat on its edge, tilting my hat forward to block out the blinding sunlight.
It was nice to see so many people out and about enjoying themselves. There were families with small kids having the time of their lives, young couples getting close to one another as they decided what to do next, and even a large group preteens all wearing matching t-shirts. It was a nice, tranquil day.
“So nice,” I said, unable to keep from smiling. “Sure hope nothing bad happens today.”
Immediately after I said that I knocked on the wooden trash can that stood nearby.
However, it wasn’t long before a loud commotion interrupted the peaceful ambiance of the garden. In the center of the garden, two teenage girls, roughly my age, appeared to be in a heated altercation with a trio of thuggish-looking guys who looked way older. One girl hid behind the other, who seemed to be standing up to them.
I got up from the fountain and moved in closer.
“Come on. Ya don’t gotta be like that! We just wanna show ya girls a nice time,” said one of the thugs, who wore a large, oversized t-shirt, baggy jeans that were practically at his ankles, and a pair of sunglasses. Both of his arms were covered in sleeve tattoos of questionably immoral content.
Standing on either side of him were his friends, I figured. One had a black tank top with gold chains hanging from his neck and a black hoodie tied around his waist. The other was too cool for a shirt altogether but had on a leather vest jacket. I guess his idea of clothing was enough to meet the park’s dress code policy. No entry allowed without some form of covering.
“And I said we’re not interested, so back off and leave us alone!” yelled the girl who stood up to them. Her cowering friend whispered something as she tugged on the brave girl’s blouse. Probably trying to calm her down.
“Whoa! Feisty!” laughed the guy with the sunglasses. “I sure do like a kitten with a bit of bite. Makes things fun.”
The trio moved in on the girls, who were backed into a thorn bush with no escape.
“We’re here just to have fun! Not to hook up, alright!” the girl yelled.
The man took off his sunglasses as he stared down at her, licking his top lip. “Ya say that, but I take one look at the way you're all prettied up, and I know that ain’t the truth. Flashing all that skin like that, just beggin’ to get picked up. In fact, ya look almost too desperate with how you’re flauntin’ them goods.”
He stroked her chest with his sunglasses, then flicked the cuff of her blouse. This naturally infuriated the poor girl, causing her to strike her assailant.
But the man caught her wrist and gripped tightly, causing her to wince in pain. The onlookers nearby moved away, not wanting to get dragged into the mess.
“Big mistake,” the man said.
I couldn’t bear to watch anymore. Someone had to put those losers in their place.
But before I could take a step, I felt a large, soft, plush hand gently grab me by the shoulder.
“What the YIKES!!!” I screamed.
Standing next to me was Cottonball. Except this Cottonball was massive! Giant! Certainly crossed the seven-foot threshold with those large ears of his! He was adorable, but also absolutely terrifying.
Cottonball looked down at me, patted my shoulder, then silently walked over to the trio of thugs with a squeak in each step.
The thug with the hoodie around his waist was the first to notice him. Seeing the cartoon bunny, he snorted. “The hell d’ya–”
Cottonball swung a fist into the thug’s gut, knocking all the air out of him. He followed up with a swift roundhouse kick, sending the thug flying back behind the girls and into the thorn bush.
The girls were stunned by the heroic display, as were the two remaining thugs.
“Why you!” yelled the leather-vested thug, who quickly threw a punch.
But it was too slow for the swift rabbit, who dodged to the side, and grabbed the thug’s arm, flinging him to the ground.
Despite the crash landing onto the brick path, the thug hopped back up and went on the assault again.
Again and again, he threw a series of punches, but Cottonball dodged them with ease.
“Think you’re so tough, huh?” the thug jeered.
He dropped down to the ground and rolled to the side. Cottonball looked down in confusion, trying to find his opponent. The Cottonball mask severely limited his vision.
“Thought so!” yelled the thug as he spun around and landed a kick directly into Cottonball’s back.
But the kick didn’t faze Cottonball at all. He turned his permanently smiling head toward the thug and stared down at him.
This struck fear into the thug, who quickly realized he was outmatched. But it was too late. Cottonball picked the man up with ease, spun him around, and performed a pile driver on him.
He was out cold.
Seeing his two boys disposed of so easily, the man with the sunglasses was sweating something fierce.
“You’re no ordinary rabbit, are ya?” he said, trying to sound tough as his lips quivered.
Cottonball stood up and looked at the man as if telling him to surrender.
“But don’t think ya won just yet!!!” he yelled.
The man wrapped his elbow around the teenage girl’s throat and pulled her close to him in a headlock, turning her into a hostage.
“If ya take one step, then I’m gonna–”
I flew past Cottonball like a bullet with both heels pointing forward. Before he could realize what hit him, I dropkicked him directly in the face. His ragdoll body tore through the thorn bush, crashed through a wooden fence, and then slammed into a brick wall, where he slouched into the ground.
I landed from my kick and disengaged my wings.
The girl, who just moments ago feared for her life, ran up to me and broke down crying.
“It’s alright now,” I said, hugging her. “You’re safe.”
The girl’s friend ran up to her and took over for me, consoling her. I turned to Cottonball, who looked at me with his unchanging expression. He gave a thumbs up.
I returned it. “You too, Jack.”
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