• Published 26th Aug 2020
  • 428 Views, 29 Comments

Taking the Bitter with the Sweet - Nico-Stone Rupan

Bitter Honey's sixteenth birthday is ruined due to some certain symptoms.

  • ...

Chapter 2: Problems

Bitter Honey sat solemnly in her room, listening to her newest friends. Some were downers, but some were amusing. She just wished she could see them.

<To continue or not to continue?>

<Worthless. It's all worthless...>

<And that's when the Fire Nation made the donuts.>

Speaking of which, the smell of baking snapped her out of her daze. Her vision was filled with nothing but a blank spot of wall. How long had she been staring at nothing? She couldn't tell. Her mind wondered about the aroma. Cake? It smelled good. Was it a special occasion? Oh, yeah. Her 50,267th birthday. Right.

Bitter clutched at her head and sighed. She wished she could think clearly. She kept having to remind herself of her own name.

<Empress Turquoise Sunsheen. That's a good name for you.>

"I like it," Bitter said aloud to no one.

She then groaned and got up. She needed to get out of there. She also wanted a piece of that cake and wish whoever's birthday it was a good one. She went over to her door and reached for the knob.

<She's going to kill you.>

Bitter froze at the warning. She would end up standing still for a half an hour contemplating whether or not to risk leaving the safety of her room.


The Person House was already packed when Gretchen and her mother, Gilda arrived. Many of her classmates were there as Bitter was fairly popular. The rest were Bitter's family, such as her grandparents from both sides. Gretchen glanced over at Sour Sweet currently greeting someone she didn't recognize, however.

"Starlight!" Sour cheered as she hugged her. "How's it been?"

"Oh, just great," Starlight answered happily. "We've just established three more branches of Our Church. It's been quite a busy year."

"How wonderful!"

"Of course, some of us are getting a bit antsy with how things are going in the country lately. We may relocate and create a settlement elsewhere. We're looking into some land in Guyana right now."

"It can get pretty hot in South America, you know."

Starlight winked. "We'll pack plenty of Kool-Aid, believe me."

Gretchen peered around for the person of honor.

"Bitter's still upstairs," she heard a voice say.

Gretchen turned to see the friendly face of Bitter's father, Second Person. "Oh, hi, Mister Person. Uh, thanks."

She was about to head towards the stairs, before Second held something out to her.

"Party hat?"

Gretchen cringed when she laid eyes upon it. It was a floppy eyesore in the shape of a birthday cake, complete with cloth candles sticking up on top. She gave her elder an annoyed look. Did he really think Gretchen of all people would want to be caught dead wearing something like that? Then again, Second had always been a dork in addition of being the world's biggest simp. Or he could've just been trolling her.

"Bitter's been a bit down lately," Second began to explain. "It might give her a laugh." He gave her a wink.

Gretchen found herself not being able to argue with that logic. If she were to look like a fool, at least she'd be doing it for Bitter.

"It better give her a good laugh..." Gretchen muttered under her breath as she snatched the hat out of Second's hand.

Reluctantly, Gretchen put it on and glanced at her mother.

"Looks good on you," Gilda said, trying her best not to laugh.

Gretchen rolled her eyes as her mother and Second went off to join the other adults. Finally, she could go find Bitter. However, before Gretchen could take a step on them, Bitter Honey appeared at the top of the stairs. Gretchen opened her mouth to greet her before noticing the distant, emotionless expression upon Bitter's face. Bitter descended the stairs and passed her best friend without so much as an acknowledging glance. Not even to the stupid hat she was wearing. Gretchen's spine shivered.

Bitter started making her way through the crowd. Some naturally tried to converse with her, but she dodged them as if they poisonous.

"There she is!" Sour Sweet cheered when she spotted her. "The birthday girl! Come on, everyone. A one and a two and..."

Everyone joined in for the chorus of the Happy Birthday song. As they did, Sour retrieved the birthday cake she had prepared. It was a grand confection with baby blue icing, the number sixteen written in white frosting with rainbow sprinkles, and complete with the same number of candles positioned around the top. Bitter didn't react to the singing, nor made a move to blow out the candles. By the end of the song, many began to notice as they exchanged awkward and confused glances. That included Bitter's mother and father.

"Uh, okay, Bitter..." Sour began with a concerned tone. "Let's dig into this cake, shall we?"

As she said those words, Sour held up a slicing knife in her hand. For the first time, Bitter showed emotion. Her eyes went wide in fear. That fear only lasted a moment, however, as it then turned into pure rage.

"I KNEW IT!!!" Bitter abruptly screamed, causing everyone to jump. "I KNEW YOU'VE ALWAYS WANTED TO KILL ME, HAVEN'T YOU, YOU FUCKING BITCH!!! YOU WON'T GET ME!!! CUNTS LIKE YOU NEVER WIN!!!"

Bitter shot her hand up and knocked the tray presenting the cake out of her mother's hands. The cake splattered upon the floor. With that, Bitter ran away and back upstairs. The slam of her bedroom door rang out. Everyone was left in stunned silence. Never before had any of them witnessed such anger, language, or action out of Bitter.

"Told you not to put her in public school," Niban stated flatly, breaking the silence.

"Mom, please..." Second whispered. He turned to everyone else. "Uh, it seems Bitter isn't feeling well. Maybe we can celebrate some other time."

Many visitors took the hint, nodded understandingly, and began to leave. Gretchen glanced over to her fellow students from CHS.

"OMG, what was that?" one sneered.

"I always thought she was strange..." another admitted.

"Oh, man!" a third laughed, quickly texting everyone in their contacts. "I wish I got video of that!"

Gretchen's fists tightened. Those fake bastards. They weren't Bitter's real friends. Gretchen was her real one and she wasn't leaving. Bitter needed her.

As the great majority filed out, Second let out a deep sigh. He looked over to his wife. Sour's eyes were fixed on her labor of love on the floor. She appeared as if she hadn't moved an inch since the bizarre outburst from her daughter. Finally, her gaze slowly met his.

"This is how it started," she managed to utter. A tear ran down her cheek. "This is how it started with me..."


Bitter Honey felt like a small child again. She was cowering in the corner of her room, wrapped in a blanket for pseudo-protection. Her door was locked so her mother couldn't rush in to decapitate her. She only had her new friends to comfort her, even if she could barely understand them now. They were becoming more excited, talking over each other.

<ZYXWVUT Kettle corn needs more tartar sauce SRQPONM The filmography of Gary Busey provides the most poignant commentary of the 18th century urban youth within Peru. In this essay, I shall... LKJIHGF It's Thursday, mah bois. Yee haw! EDCBA Gretchen, when are you going to eat this poor girl's French fries, already? Now I know my CBA's, next time won't you rant with me?>

Suddenly, light began to show through the blanket's fabric. She could of sworn she had turned the light off of her room. Curiously but cautiously, she stuck her head out. She gasped as she realized that she wasn't in her room anymore. Nor her house.

A dark forest surrounded her. She stood, letting the blanket drop to the ground. She was about to take a step forward before a rustling noise halted her. Out from some bushes scurried a small, but fierce-looking animal. It looked as if it was half bird, half reptile. Before Bitter could react, the quick creature darted toward her and then the unexpected happened. It phased right through her legs as if it, or possibly her, were a ghost.

"Aw, what a cute chicken-snake," Bitter said in a sweet tone before growing sour and spouting, "Yeah, better run before I deep fry your ass!"

Bitter put her hand over her mouth. She had never spoken in such a tone-shifting manner. In fact, there were a lot of things she hadn't ever done before that she was doing lately. As she reflected on her behavior as well as her unfamiliar surrounding, she began to yearn for some kind of guidance. Any kind of direction would do.

Bitter's attention suddenly fixated on a specific point of the forest. She felt something pulling at her. Something telling her to walk that way.

She complied.

Bitter passed through the seemingly unending forest. Even the various chilling sounds of unknown creatures couldn't sway her attention away from the force that was leading her. Finally, she reached the end of the tree line. Ahead of her was a plank bridge covering a small crevasse and beyond that was the ruins of an ancient structure. In the middle of that, she saw the shimmering top of a pink structure. She knew that was the place she needed to be.

Her feet sprinted at full speed. She crossed the bridge, not even thinking of the possibility that the rickety thing could snap under her. She ran up the hill and swung open the large wooden doors to reveal the illuminated treehouse within. Bitter took a step forward when she was suddenly blinded by a bright glow. When it died down, Bitter found herself facing a sparkling being who looked strangely familiar.

"You do not belong here," it said in an echoing, yet monotone voice.

Comments ( 13 )

Awww, Bitter.... :fluttershysad:

And awww, mama Sour, nuu...

They both need serious long hugs. And a serious talk, that, that'd be good too.

Well, this certainly took a turn. Her mind is in such disarray it wound up in another universe entirely.

Dang. Bitter's having a vision quest that wouldn't look out of place in Mage: the Awakening. Hopefully the avatar of Harmony will be able to help her get close enough to reality to see it on a cloudy day. Or, failing that, Gretchen can try to help. It's especially tragic that the one person who best understands Bitter's situation is the least suited to help her right now.

I did not expect dimension hopping.


Uh oh........it’s happening again.


I see this, and my heart aches for Bitter. She's going to be facing some tough times ahead, and it will take her real friends to get through it. Medication will help, but most of what she is going to need is patience and understanding. Two things that unfortunately seem to be in short supply in Highschool. I know that she's going to have several hallunations happen to her, although there is one that I hope she has because I feel that it would be more of a benefit instead of a hinderance.

Sitting alone she listned to the sound of nothing. Everything was wrong. She couldn't understand the things happening to her, and a look up she saw him again. It wasn't the first time, and she assumed it wouldn't be the last time.

"Ah, Bitter San," he said with a cheery smile, "It is nice to see you."

The chubby otaku removed his glasses and cleaned them, "I was with the others, and suddenly I am here," he said as he neared her bed, "That must mean that my friend needs me."

She shivered and pulled her knees up to her chest, "Kohta San," she said, "Something is wrong. It feels wrong, it isn't... I don't know how to explain. I see things. You are the most normal."

He grinned, "Normal, well normal for a character from a Manga you weren't supposed to read, right Bitter San?"

She nodded, "How is Takagi san?"

He rubbed his shoulder, "Good, we're together, like you imagined," he said with a grin, "But it isn't Takagi you want to talk about eh?"

She looked at her legs, "I'm scared," she said, "It feels like I'm losing myself. You lost yourself, right?"

He nodded, "Yes, I did," he said, "And my friends helped pull me back."

He touched her cheek, "Bitter San, I will always be here when you call. I am you," he said, "But, like how my friends pulled me back, you need your friends. Trust them, know that they have your best interest at heart."

She shivered, "If I take the medicine, then you won't be here, will you?"

He smiled, "I'll always be here," he said, "Like I said, I am you, but I may not be here like this. Trust me, talk to your friends, to your parents. Life is too short. And be thankful you're not dealing with Them."

That was definitely sad to read. Especially hard for Sour Sweet. She'd gone so long thinking her daughter had avoided the same thing she'd found herself in and now her worst fears have come to life. Probably never even thought to get her checked for it. Hope she doesn't blame herself.

On a side note for Starlight, I just watched a biographics video the other day so I know where that's going.

Well shit... Tree, you better be helpful here.

Also, Starlight, that's dark even for you.

I would not be surprised if Niban got punched in this story


"Oh, just great," Starlight answered happily. "We've just established three more branches of Our Church. It's been quite a busy year."

"How wonderful!"

"Of course, some of us are getting a bit antsy with how things are going in the country lately. We may relocate and create a settlement elsewhere. We're looking into some land in Guyana right now."

"It can get pretty hot in South America, you know."

Starlight winked. "We'll pack plenty of kool-aid, believe me."

Yeesh, this is dark as hell.

What must it be like for a mother who struggled with demons her entire life to witness her daughter struggle with the same demons?

Is this a reference?

Kind of. Honestly it was just a scene I wrote. I figured that Bitter might be a bit of a Geek and into Anime and Manga. Since that was the case I wondered what manga could she read that would likely be a little mature for her. The answer was Highschool of the Dead. Konta is one of the main characters in it. He's a huge geek, but an expert marksman. I would say spoilers, but the manga has been out for en.exceptionally long time, so it's kind of like knowing that Vader is Luke's dad. Kind of common knowledge for the fans of the kind of manga and anime hotd falls into.

Anyway, Kohta has to do something that nearly breaks him. It's only do to his friends that he pulls through. I thought it fitting to have Bitter talk to him.

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