Chapter 1:

She Came Dressed in White

White Wings Café

My heart closed up a long time ago. That isn't to say that I don't have emotions to begin with; that would be far too overdramatic for my taste. I just simply kept most of them pent up. Not like I had much of a choice. Things like anger, sorrow, and even grief were all things that I had to keep locked behind multiple locks and chains. All for the sake of saving face.

The actions of the child reflect directly back on to the parents. I wasn't sure who came up with that phrase but it's been drilled into my head ever since I had my first coherent thought. The last thing I wanted to be was a burden so I didn't have any objections. Or rather, I wasn't allowed to have any objections.

Rain pitter-pattered against a large window. Cars sped down the street, presumably hurrying back home to their families where they would be greeted with warm meals and a peck on the cheek. Outside was looking pretty grey and lifeless compared to how well lit the café was. My eyes could barely keep themselves open as I sat at a rounded table, one hand wiping it down while the other was being used to support my head.

"Guess that means it's time for bed," I muttered, wiping my eyes as a yawn left my mouth.

The boxes that were here at the beginning of the week had now vanished, leaving only white and red tiles at my feet. Not everything was completely ready for the cafe to open properly and there were a few things I still had to unpack in my room, but I did the best I could in the time that was given to me.

I locked the front entrance, making sure to pull and twist on the many latches that were on the cherry red door. Next was to turn off the lights. The ones in the kitchen with no ingredients, the ones in the employee bathroom with the only employee present being none other than myself, and finally the lights to the actual café, where customers and their friends alike would hopefully one day visit.

Up the stairs that painfully stuck out behind the counter where I would take orders and to the right was where my room stood. Boxes full of clothes, figurines, and other trinkets were spread out over the carpeted floor. My school uniform sat on a chair that wasn't pushed in properly. Tomorrow would be my first day of high school. What was it that people used to say in one of my shows to seem optimistic?

Brand new school.

Brand new life.


A sense of déjà vu washed over me. I had said the same thing back when I first started school and again when I moved up to junior high. Real change didn't work that way, just by wishing to be better. Not for me. At 16 years old, having such immature thoughts was just more trouble than it was worth. The best I could do over the next three years was to try and focus on the café while keeping up with my studies.

I couldn't just let the things I've inherited go to waste.

Thunder and lightning crashed, forcing the power off and catching me off guard. I stumbled forward and hit my head on my chair before falling to the ground. Rubbing my temple, I couldn't help but let out a groan. It was pitch black and my eyes were nowhere close to adjusting to my surroundings.

Someone called out to me. The voice of a woman, one that I had never heard before, echoed through the room. It was soothing and gentle, very similar to the way a mother would talk to their newborn child.


My name. She said my name. I sat up and looked around but no one was in the room. I had only been there for a short amount of time so maybe there was some sort of speaker system I hadn't found out about yet?

The back entrance! Scratching my head with both hands, I couldn't believe how stupid I had been to forget to lock it. Someone had broken in and it was my fault.

"Um..." I said, raising my voice as I sat with my hands on my knees. "If you're going to steal from someone..can you maybe go across the street? This stuff is all I have left."

A faint crackling could be heard as if I accidentally spilled water on some electronics. The sound grew louder and more high pitched until finally, it sizzled out. A flash of light exploded outward, creating an orb-like shape that now sat in the middle of my room. I scurried back on my hands and knees until I found myself against my futon.

The orb dimmed. Two wings as white as snow sprouted out and blew away some papers on my desk with their force. Hands clasped as if praying, eyes closed yet somehow at peace with herself, a girl no older than me hovered above the ground, her figure illuminated by the bright light around her. She had pale skin that was only slightly darker than the white gown she was wearing and long blonde hair that went down to lower back before messily spreading out. She reluctantly opened her eyes, gazing down at me with a look of serenity on her face. Her light blue eyes met mine as I took my first breath in what seemed like forever.

This girl was undeniably pretty.

"Long time no see," she said, floating gracefully until her feet hit the ground.

"W-what? I don't..."

She let out a soft "thought so," and put one hand in front of the other. Before I knew it, the girl bowed her head as she kept her composure. "Hoshino Shiro, I am indebted to you. As your new guardian angel, it is now my task to guide you toward happiness."

Thump. The words I wanted to say. The things I wanted to ask. They all became so jumbled up in my head that they were nothing more than a mess.

Thump. Thump. I didn't understand. Truthfully speaking, I couldn't understand even if I wanted to. Even then, the swirling emotion in the pit of my gut, the warm yet chilling tenderness that began to spread its way throughout my body; it was something that I had never felt before.

"Happiness? Angel?"

Thump. Thump. Thump.

Thus on that fateful day— my heart that I had thought closed up many years ago began to beat once more.