It wasn't until he started writing that Fakir realised just how much damage Drosselmeyer had done to Kinkan Town. It wasn't something that surprised him, but it did leave him with a cold sort of awe. There was so much that needed to be set right, and Fakir was the one left to pick up that mantle. Somehow, he was supposed to undo all that damage.
Some days were clearer than others, some lives much more obviously affected. Fakir could almost see Drosselmeyer's casual malevolence spilled out before him, and in those cases it was perfectly clear just how he should approach them. He could write for hours then and hardly register the passage of time, and the end would leave him worn with the sort of exhausted accomplishment he could only strive for in his dancing, only struggle for when he lifted a sword. Some days, he could truly believe himself a spinner of stories.
Others, though, were not so clear cut. There were days when he would find himself doubting his perception – could he really know what ending these strangers needed? Some of the changes Drosselmeyer had invoked seemed almost meaningless in Fakir's eyes. Was there something more to it, something he was missing? Could he be misunderstanding the signs? Perhaps these lives hadn't been touched by Drosselmeyer at all – if that were the case, was he just imposing his
will on them? If he couldn't be certain, then surely these lives would be better left alone. Only, what if there
been some intent to those subtle changes – would the malice resurface at a later point? Drosselmeyer wasn't here to answer his questions, and Fakir wouldn't have trusted him enough to ask.
Talking to Autor was, of course, no help. He didn't sneer
so much now as he used to, less grudging and more accepting of Fakir's achievements as a spinner. But the music student (his friend, Fakir supposed, even if Autor did have a poor way of showing it) remained frustratingly opaque when faced with questions. It would go one of two ways; either Autor would lose sight of the issue in his usual irrational outrage, or he would become seized with dismay that someone of Fakir's lineage and integrity should need to ask for help in the first place. No, Fakir had long since given up turning to Autor for anything other than the occasional welcome distraction.
It was his other companion who could help him at his most troubled. Fakir hadn't tried speaking to Ahiru at first, for reasons that made him feel incredibly foolish and yet awkwardly, achingly sincere. She'd done so much already, and she'd surely suffered enough. Why should he give her more to concern herself with? This was his burden alone, and he had no right nor wish to trouble her any further with his problems.
She'd soon let him know her feelings on
all quacking and feathers and very real human indignation. He'd laughed at the time, couldn't quite help himself, and that had only made her all the more vocal. Eventually though he'd managed to soothe her with promises that he wouldn't keep her in the dark any longer. He should really have known better than to think he could keep anything from her – or to think she'd
him, the stubborn well-meaning idiot. Now, it was common for him to talk her through his efforts, explaining his doubts and trying to decipher what insight she could provide. Her method of communication was far from direct, but he always found some way to understand her meaning. This was Ahiru, after all – there was no one else so experienced in the art of presenting emotions without the option of giving them voice.
(He tried not to dwell on that.)
It really shouldn't have been surprising to him that, when he was most unable to find his words, she would be the one to help. Ahiru had done more for the people of Drosselmeyer's story – the people of Kinkan Town - than he'd ever been able to do alone. Even on that final night, when Mytho had confronted the Monster Raven and chosen Rue to be his princess, even on that final night it was Ahiru's story he had written and Ahiru's courage that had guided him through.
Now, when he described those who's lives Drosselmeyer had affected, it was Ahiru who found ways to pick through the confusion and show him the details he missed.
Fakir couldn't count the number of people who's lives had been touched by Princess Tutu, but now and again his writing would lead him to one of them. They always stood out among the townsfolk, for they were the only ones he never had to question. There was nothing he could write for them that Princess Tutu hadn't already set into motion – she'd seen through the rigours of their altered stories and helped them find their own way free of Drosselmeyer's meddling. Princess Tutu had transcended the boundaries of the story in a way that Fakir had never been able to recognise from within it. Looking now, he could only wonder at how he'd stayed so blind to her incredible influence for so long.
And now, to those townspeople at least, she was gone. She'd never existed, perhaps, or they just couldn't recall her – they were left only with some faint recollection of a girl who'd once helped them. They had no face or name to place the memory to, and they certainly didn't know that Princess Tutu continued to save their town even now, when she'd already given them so much and received so little. They didn't know that she was
that way – they didn't know the girl behind the princess, the duck behind the girl, the one who stayed by Fakir's side as he stayed by hers...
He'd considered, once, trying to write his own ending. Even away from the page, nothing had come to him. When he looked to Ahiru that evening, bright-eyed and enthusiastic and still so much the hopeless klutzy girl he'd somehow come to cherish, he had to wonder just what more he'd been expecting.
Perhaps, one day, he would find words. Enough to thank her, at the least. But then, perhaps that insight of hers had already figured him out.
Perhaps, somehow, she already knew.