In my character development, (boy, that's a loaded word, "development," - sounds like I actually had a plan or something), ...
In my character development of Mataoka, there has been something missing. In the role playing conversations, many have left her, and she found herself in that place that all adults do at one point, where since coming of age, her friends, family, and acquaintances splintered off on their own journeys. As the writer, or rather just an observer of this character, and her faithful scribe, I often felt some melancholy for her. It's a difficult adjustment into maturity to simply like being in one's own head, and enjoy one's own company. This Maslow's hierarchy of self-actualization is a boon for most of us, and Mataoka's story holds no exception.
In other words -- she is alone.
Cyrme posed the question after a terrible vandalizing incident in her virtual world what things would you "take" or be most upset about losing. I have thought about this for many days, and always kept circling back to the same answer, that the intangibles would be the most devastating to replace. Perhaps this is why we fear aging so much, losing our physical and mental acuity. We don't want to miss what we're missing.
The tangible objects are just those, what can be held:
There is a letter.
There is a ring.
And there is a dress.
They all have a story, and if they went up in smoke tomorrow, it would only create energy.
But these things I cannot replace:
Around Mataoka's neck, she wears a silver key, and a tiny charm, a phial, with a few of her own tears inside. These tears were collected from surprise happiness, never sorrow.
If you want to know why she cried, read this, please: The Shaman's Horse
Thank you Tome and Navi. With all my heart. You make it bigger, and make me better every day.