Title: With Subtitles
Fandom: Alice 19th
Disclaimer: No ownership implied, no profit gained. This is a fanwork.
Characters/Pairings: Alice, (Mei Lin)
Summary: Alice needs to put a little thought into her future. But balancing a career and being a Lotis Neo-Master won't be easy. And no one is around to talk to. Luckily, there is a distraction.
Notes: Amnesty for cottoncandy_bingo/'making someone smile' and also for the wonderful and patient misura.
Alice sighed and set her pen down. Her assignment wasn't difficult - well, it shouldn't have been difficult. After all, she just needed to list her preferences for universities and occupations.
She wanted to go ask Mayura how she'd decided. It wasn't that Alice really hadn't thought about it. She had, over the last few years, but that was before she'd become a Neo-Master and obviously, she'd always have that.
Alice knew she'd need to have enough freedom to teach and possibly travel and depending on her employer, explaining why might be difficult. That meant she'd have to choose carefully.
Kyo would be able to work at the bakery, of course. But Alice didn't know if that was what Kyo really wanted to do. Maybe he could have his own place. Maybe they-- Well, that was possibly getting ahead of herself. But even if they didn't stay as a couple, working together with Kyo would be nice. Especially since he wouldn't need an explanation for her other life.
She sent him a quick message asking him to call her, though Alice knew he was probably still working. She didn't need to talk to him right away, after all. And she had a couple of days to think about it. She did want to ask Mayura and her parents what they thought. Still, it wasn't exactly going to leave her mind.
A quick run downstairs reminded her that she was still the only one home. Mayura was out with friends and her father had mentioned working late and there was a note from her mother on the table along with--
Alice was surprised that the top line of the note referred to the thickly-wrapped bundle on the table.
'A package came in the mail for you, Alice. It's from China! Do you have a pen-pal there?
'Leave plenty of leftovers for Mayura.
Alice smiled. She forgot all about worrying about her future, especially because she had time to think about it and plenty of people to help her along the way. Even dinner could wait -- Mei Lin had sent her a surprise!
Alice held her breath while she unwrapped the parcel. Inside was a DVD that looked like a period drama. The woman on the cover wasn't Mei Lin, though. She flipped it over and squinted at the stills on the back - was that Mei Lin, beside the lead? The text was all in Chinese, though there was a bit of English on it as well.
Frowning, Alice opened the unsealed case. Tucked inside was a letter, and Mei Lin had autographed the insert in silver pen.
'Dear Alice, I hope you are doing well. E-mail me when you get this, okay? It's my first supporting role, and I really wanted you to have a copy. It's in Chinese, though there are English subtitles which you might be able to read.'
Alice winced and stuck out her tongue at the letter. She'd probably pick out fragments, but if it was a period drama, she knew there would be a lot of hard words.
The rest of Mei Lin's letter talked about other projects she was working on, and also mentioned some new students at her branch of the order and how they'd like to meet the Neo-Masters, especially the Alice who rediscovered the legendary Lost Words.
Alice smiled again, surprised at how warm she felt at the thought of people wanting to meet her. Mei Lin's timing couldn't have been better, even if she didn't know it.
And she knew that she had a lot to look forward to, no matter what choices she made with schools and a career.
But all of that could definitely wait. Alice hugged the DVD case to her chest for a moment and grinned. She had a movie to watch, after all, and dinner to eat.
Drink Lemonade! Tip Your Waitress!