Author's Note

This story is through Mint's perspective during Episode 21 of the anime (Sparks of the Heart – Ichigo and Mint At Odds). In this particular episode, Mint and Ichigo have a heated argument and Mint decides to quit the Mew Mews. If you are not familiar with the episode, I suggest watching it because these events do not take place in the manga. However, if you have not seen this episode, don't fear. I purposely made the story very descriptive so you can imagine what is going on even if you are not familiar with the episode. Enjoy!

*Disclaimer: I do not own the rights to the Tokyo Mew Mew anime or manga.

The real reason?

I couldn't come to terms with my feelings for her.

I knew that turning in my Mew Mew outfit meant removing myself from everything that reminded me of her.

And that's why I quit.

I'm not sure when it all started. Although I found her extremely irritating at first (oblivious, uncoordinated, improper) I found her eccentricities to be… as much as I hate to admit it… sort of adorable. Ichigo is so open, so bubbly, so friendly... the complete opposite of me. Part of me envied her, part of me wanted to be her, and part of me wanted to be with her. But I couldn't possibly tell her this. So instead, I used my snobby remarks as a way of complimenting her. It was the only way I knew how.

Hmm? What about Zakuro Onee-sama, you ask? Well of course, I admire her as an idol and a big sister. But that's just the problem; I see her as a sister, not a lover. Ichigo, on the other hand... I don't admire her personality, I am attracted to it. But, as I mentioned a moment ago, I couldn't possibly tell her this, so I used my obsession with Onee-sama as a cover-up. Praising her was easy. She is famous and successful- something normally coveted.

But pining over an "ordinary girl" like Ichigo would seem peculiar, and would most likely give me away. Therefore, she got the insults, the jabs. The snotty attitude that pushed her away because I didn't want her to see how excited I got whenever she was around. I pouted and complained, but, in reality, I wanted to curl up next to her and bury my face against her neck. But if I were to do that... the bell-choker Aoyama-san gave her would tingle, reminding me that she had feelings for someone else.

It was always Aoyama-kun, Aoyama-kun, Aoyama-kun. I'd see that smirk on her face... the humming to herself... playing with the bell he gave her... they were getting closer every day... and me? I just sat there drinking my tea, pretending to look down on her, when really I wanted to pounce on her. This went on for months as I watched from pampered sidelines. But a certain nightmare acted as the breaking point, like a well-groomed nail suddenly snapping, its tattered edges grazing me on sensitive skin.

I went to sleep one night uncommonly frazzled because Ichigo was once again talking about Aoyama-san. And, on top of that, she was giving all of her attention to Pudding because she had been sick a few days earlier. I know it is simply awful to be jealous of that... but Ichigo never paid attention to me unless she was yelling at me to do chores or help around the café.

That night, crestfallen and lonely, I fell into a dream of blue.

A blue lorikeet, my Mew Mew companion, landed on a frail, solitary tree in the middle of a barren sky. It spoke to me and told me I had to come to terms with my feelings for Ichigo. I said no, that I couldn't possibly do that, for fear of rejection. But when I refused, the lorikeet used a rather overdone cliché: "Spread your wings and fly." But then I actually grew wings, two feathered appendages sprouting from my shoulder blades, feathers falling at my feet.

With buckling knees, I fell backward from the force, or perhaps it was the enormity of the situation that made my legs go so numb. I yelled, making more excuses, but the lorikeet refused to listen. Arching its back, it screeched and veered its head, sending me hurtling through the lorikeet-crowded sky.

I woke, grasping at hollow air, forgetting that gravity exists in reality, real or imagined. After I composed myself, I stared down at my hands and, frustrated, thumped my palm against my forehead, debating over what I should do. It was so simple yet so complicated.

Japanese Dictionary:

Onee-sama: elder sister (honorable)

*I hope you liked the first chapter! Please comment if you did! :3 -Rai