The original version of the prologue, with inaccuracies and omissions, has been recreated here.

 

        May 17, 2014.
        During a gray-sky afternoon, Mami Tomoe and Homura Akemi had just stepped outside after hosting an open interview session. They were accompanied by Madoka Kaname and Sayaka Miki, two of their magical girl allies, as well as a new person Mami had just made friends with the day before: a young girl with white hair. They were also accompanied by the small cat-like creature Kyubey, who took time out from pestering the drummer Ritsu Tainaka to help host the session. However, Mami's friend was in a rush and had to leave the group before the open interview session ended.
        Mami and Homura watched as Kyubey leapt into the air and scampered down the stone stairs in front of them, toward the scattered crowds at a nearby hill. Madoka and Sayaka waved at Mami and Homura before heading off toward the crowds themselves.
        Homura thought long and hard about a question that someone in the audience, a man with sunglasses, asked the group. The man had elaborated on a possible scenario and ended with, "but then somehow, there was a second Homura who showed up?"
        This caused Homura to think back to the previous winter, when she saw that very doppelganger in front of her very eyes...
        "If you're making this up, you know what's gonna happen, right?" the twin-from-another-time had said.
        Homura remembered what seemed like her own voice coming out of the mouth of the second-Homura, who had the same hair, the same clothes, and the same shield as her.... Maybe that second-Homura had faint purple highlights in her hair...?

        Just then, Mami shook Homura's shoulder, bringing her back to the afternoon, and indicated someone nearby with a camera calling for them. It was not the man who was in the audience. With Mami taking the lead, the both of them contentedly stepped down the stairs, and stopped in front of some trees.

        They stood back-to-back, as Homura raised her left forearm to show her shield, while Mami simply smiled for the camera.
        However, the both of them had a slight feeling that the man in the audience would meet up once more with them... a so-called Fugitive they were assigned to protect, from seven people who wanted him dead.
        After all, Mami and Homura were part of a Resurrection Movement.
       
        Little did either of them know that someone far away was silently watching them on a large concave viewscreen. A one-handed sword was lazily being turned over back and forth in that someone's hand. The sword was the famous Lambent Light rapier, the very one that Asuna had declared missing for years. The Opposition leader, the seventh person who wanted the Fugitive dead, had been in possession of the rapier for the past year and a half, and was not willing to give it up.




I felt this prologue had to be changed because I deliberately based it on actual events that took place on May 17, 2014. I went to a Madoka Magica-themed panel because I was aware that two people I had the chance to meet on January 18, 2014 were hosting it. They went as Mami and Homura, while there were others going as Madoka, Nagisa M. and Kyubey. When I first wrote this, I'd forgotten that Sayaka wasn't actually with the group.


Of course, since people shoot things up and share it online, I eventually found out that there was a photo of the Mami and Homura cosplayers on Tumblr, so I decided to reference that photo as well.


You can read more about the May 17, 2014 events in chapter 15 of the Otafest debriefings REDUX on my blog.