Nana was eight the first time she saw a Magical Girl.
One of her neighbors down the street had a thirteen year old girl by the name of Yamashiro Hanabi, a quiet girl but a hard worker. Nana was out late because she was following one of the more amiable stray cats in hopes of petting it. She had managed a few scritches when she happened to look up just in time to see a flash of light, a dance sequence, and her neighbor Hanabi was dressed in a rather silly outfit while she called aloud “Moonbow Princess: Copper!tm” before flying away.
Nana slowly blinked, mechanically brushing off magical glitter from her hair and shoulders. All the cats were gone, and the sunlight was starting to fade so she made it back to her house out of habit.
The answer she got from her Mama was enlightening.
“Magical Girls (and sometimes Boys) are a Japanese cultural heritage. For centuries teenagers and young adults get called to become magical warriors against the many, many different types of forces of Darkness. The world is always about the be destroyed/enslaved/or conquered, dear. So there is a spread of fighters uniquely gifted in getting rid of these problems for a short time.” Nana’s mother carefully combed her daughter’s hair from the bottom up as she explained, “The rest of society is well aware of them, but it is more efficient to pretend that we don’t recognize them, it keeps the danger levels to something a teenager can deal with.”
“What do you mean by that, Mama?” Nana fidgeted with the hairbands while she waited.
“The more competent people in the know, the more dangerous the fights become. That’s just the way things are. So being tactfully oblivious keeps things manageable. There’s a list of ways of identifying a Magical Girl, and how we can keep their life easier by being the stable, never changing influence. We are the support and their reason to fight. Whatever worries they have, make sure that none of it comes from you. Ok Nana-chan?”She patted her daughter’s soft hair.
“Mhm! Ok Mama!” Nana grinned up at her. She can do that! She can give Hanabi-san some cookies, too. Cookies always help.
Years later, Nana received a flyer in the mail claiming to tutor students into leaders of the future. Her sweet, kind Tsu-kun. For all of his cuteness, Tsuna was a bit, lazy. Her motivation has failed him, so perhaps this will be the push he needs! When the doorbell rang so early, Nana was surprised. Until she saw who was on her doorstep. Nana could practically feel a little check box being marked off in her head. The same check box list that all Japanese citizens have.
1. Small, adorable Mentor that is much stronger than they appear. Can be substituted for an enigmatic adult. Bonus points if Mentor is both.
Later, the Japanese Namimori gossip chain/support group informed Nana that there were gunshots heard today and the Tsuna was forced to honor duel a student at school.
2. Inexplicable bouts of courage, or an inspiring fight.
Nana quietly reminded herself that twice was only a coincidence. But just in case, she practiced her cooking skills. That was her best support feature.
She was so happy that Tsu-kun brought home a friend that it wasn’t much later that she remembered another part of the list.
3. Gathers or joins a group of of fellow Magical Girl/Boy fighters. There will be a coordination. Especially if everyone in the group is unusually colored and/or pretty with rather distinct personalities.
Hayato-kun had silver hair and green eyes and already called her son by an odd nickname. He was a sweet dear that needed mothering, but he was certainly exuberant with plenty of mood swings. Nana considered check box number three, if a few more teenagers popped up like Hayato she’ll consider it checked.
For Nana, it really came to a head in her mind when cheerful, polite Kyoko-chan suddenly started throwing kitchen appliances at her and her son stopped her while mostly naked, on fire, and shouting about his Dying Will. When everything died down (oh good, Kyoko-chan was merely a victim of temporary sanity loss rather than a villain), Nana was quick to put on an airy smile to assure Tsuna that there was nothing about her for him to worry about. The news bubbled under her skin all day until she could go to her local community meet-up. When she got there, Nana greeted everyone with a big smile.
“My Tsu-kun is a Magical Boy!” Nana crowed with pride. The news was met with some relief, as it explained the oddness of the past few weeks. (Honestly the town was overdue a Magical group) And from there they can plan out contingencies.