Disclaimer: Magic Knight Rayearth belongs to CLAMP
*Here we go with the whole writing two stories at once thing again. Well this one is written in first-person, kind of like my manuscript. I've never read a Rayearth fic that's written in first person from only one of the Knight's perspective before, so I'm going to try it out. Again, this one has a moral, I'm not going to reveal it yet though, see if you can figure it out. Hope you like. ^.^ oh, couples, U/C+ a little new character stuff. F/F and L/H.*
Always With Me
Chapter One: Dreaming
I flipped my light blue hair from my eyes and looked around me, frustrated and not at all sure what was happening beyond the chaos in my stormy blue eyes. Why were they surrounding me? They were like clones of the people I knew not the people that I loved.
"Hikaru?" the word barely was a mutter, escaping my lips. "Fuu?"
"Umi-chan, gomen nasai, but you didn't want to stay…" Hikaru whispered softly, and I nodded, confused.
"We tried to get you to come to Cephiro…we tried…" Fuu assured me.
"Yes, but…" I faltered. Shouldn't they be saying something? Shouldn't they be saying they love me and they'll miss me? They left me in the first place; the least they could do was say they would miss me!
"We've got to go Umi, ja ne," the lack of familiarity in Hikaru's phrase sent my head spinning.
"Hikaru! Fuu!" I screamed into their fading images. "No! Wait! Don't go! Don't leave me here alone!"
But they did, they turned and left, fading into the distance, and I was alone in this horrible vortex. I was by myself, and the world was slowly collapsing upon me. I had no one; I had no friends and no family.
I woke with a start, sweat pouring down the back of my neck. They would never do that; they would never abandon me, I assured myself for the hundredth time that dream had plagued me.
Hikaru and Fuu had been in Cephiro for two years; they had gone to stay. They came back to see me all the time though, since the destruction of the pillar system they had been able to travel to Earth freely. Something was not right on the air though, not lately.
I had stayed to be with my family, to give my parents a few more years with them, and then they had been murdered.
I never went back to Cephiro after that.
Hikaru and Fuu tried to cheer me up so long after that, but I could never face the rest of them. After a few weeks I tried to go back, but it made me too sad to think about what wasn't waiting for me. A few weeks turned into a few months. Then I began to think about what they'd say, "Where have you been Umi? Don't you care?" I didn't want to hear it, didn't want to deal with, so I stayed. A few months turned into a few years. I guessed I would stay on Earth forever; I would never join them like I promised.
I numbly rose and walked to the computer. I touched the keys and began to type my latest dream. I read over the other dreams I had had and realized that they were the same.
I stared at the screen and shook my head, somehow this seemed wrong. Reoccurring dreams were never a good sign, not with me anyway.
I dressed and walked to the Tokyo Tower. I watched the sun rise from the observation desk. I smiled at the guard.
"G'mornin' Umi," he smiled in his English accent.
"Good morning Mark," I answered him, and he continued his normal sweeping. We had become friends; I was a usual.
I closed my eyes and whispered something, "Let them be here, to see the Knight of Water."
With my words Hikaru and Fuu landed on Earth, all smiles and goodwill. I smiled back at them and gave them each a hug. "Hey guys!"
"Hey Umi-chan," Hikaru answered cheerily, and Fuu bowed slightly with a smile.
I looked at my best friends, not the clones from my dreams. Fuu with her short golden hair and her small but gorgeous smile, Hikaru with that infamous braided red hair and pure innocence and happiness. I loved them both like sisters; they were like family.
They had tried to persuade me to come back to Cephiro; occasionally they would try still, but it had passed.
"What are we gonna do today?" Hikaru asked, and I shook my head.
"What day is it here?" Fuu inquired, and I laughed.
"March 3rd, but still brisk. Wanna go pick up jackets from my house?"
"Umi-chan!" Hikaru shouted.
"What?" I inquired impishly.
"You were just going to let us completely forget your 21st birthday?" Hikaru sighed and shook her head.
"Was I?" I smiled.
"You will do no such thing," Fuu reprimanded, and I laughed.
"We're going to take you out to celebrate," Hikaru informed me, and I sighed and pretended to be annoyed.
"If we must."
We walked to a local restaurant and got a table for three.
"So Umi," Fuu had a glint in her eyes, "how goes your love-life? Any new romances we need to know about?"
"Actually," an arm was around my waist, and I looked behind me, "yes."
"Who's this?" Hikaru inquired, gaining the same glint in her eyes.
"This is Nori," I introduced him.
"And you must be the infamous Fuu and Hikaru I've heard so much about, pleased to meet you," he reached a hand out and shook each of their hands, bowing slightly. I turned and looked at him, and my eyes caught something glinting behind his back.
"What is that?" my voice was deadly.
"A bottle of wine for your birthday," he answered and pulled it from behind him. "I was looking for you, and saw you come in here."
My eyes flared in rage, and Fuu and Hikaru winced. "Why would you even do something like that?" I screamed and turned from him, trying my best to calm myself. There were too many eyes on me.
"Umi," he set the alcohol down and looked into my eyes. "What's wrong?"
"You know very well what I think about that stuff!" I turned away from him.
"Umi, gomen nasai, I thought you were over that…"
"Over that!" my eyes were like ice. "I think you should leave."
"No, just leave," I instructed, and he nodded and left.
I stared at the bottle on the table and looked at my shaking hands.
"It's gone," Fuu assured me, and gave it to a waiter to dispose of.
"Guys," Hikaru mumbled and shook her head.
I smiled and looked at her, trying to force the images out of my mind, trying to make everything go away. "Speaking of which, how are you two and that spectrum?"
Hikaru jabbed Fuu, and Fuu blushed and held out a hand.
I took the hand and admired the ring. It was a single circle emerald with a few smaller diamonds around the edge. "Oh my God Fuu!" I shouted and gave her a hug.
She laughed and nodded as we sat back down.
"When?" I demanded.
"A week ago or so," she answered and looked down. "Ferio, he's…"
"You've always loved him," I finished for her, and she nodded again.
"But don't let me steal the limelight," Fuu urged. "Because Hikaru-san here and Lantis have been together for quite some time."
"Oh really?" I raised my brows, and Hikaru nodded and bit her lip.
"I don't know how it happened. We were just walking through the gardens and…"
"The gardens?" I cut her off and smirked.
Hikaru nodded, blushing, and continued, "So anyway! We were just walking, and he told me that he wanted to be more than just friends. At first I was so flabbergasted that I was quiet, but I managed to say yes."
"And what does Eagle think about this?" I persisted, and Hikaru sighed.
"You know Eagle, he's secretive; they both are. I think he realizes that I l-"
"You love him don't you Hikaru, you love Lantis?"
She blushed at my question, but nodded, "But-but he doesn't know!"
"Hikaru-san, you haven't told him?" Fuu laughed when Hikaru looked appalled.
"I don't want to rush him or something," she muttered, and I laughed with Fuu.
"You're so cute," I commented as the waiter came over.
We ordered and ate a good meal, talking about things in Cephiro and things on Earth. I didn't mention my dreams until we left the restaurant and headed back to the Tokyo Tower, the sun was setting.
"I didn't want to upset you guys," I began, and they turned their attention to me. We stopped on the observation deck where we first met. I turned my eyes and looked over the Tokyo skyline. "But I have to tell you something."
"What is it Umi-san?" Fuu inquired, worry lined her face.
"I think-I think that something is going to go wrong in Cephiro. I've been having this reoccurring dream. I just know that you guys leave me here, on Earth. For some reason the portal is closed, and I can't reach you. You stay there, and I'm left here. I don't know, I just feel that something is wrong." They knew I wouldn't have said anything unless I was dead serious. They didn't say anything for a long time, because they knew that this was very serious. I didn't trouble them with problems often, and when I did it normally concerned more than me.
"Well what can we do?" Fuu asked after a long time.
"I don't know," I shook my head in worry, "just be ready for anything. I want you guys to stay safe if I can't get to you. If I can't reach you though, promise me something."
"Anything Umi-chan," Hikaru looked scared.
"Promise me that we'll always be best friends," I tried to keep tears in.
"Now, there's no sense talking like that," Fuu scolded, but she had tears in her eyes too.
"Just promise," I forced them to promise.
"We would never think otherwise Umi-san," Fuu answered.
"We'll always love you!" Hikaru threw her arms around me in a tight embrace, Fuu did the same, and I smiled and hugged them back.
"Arigato guys, it's probably nothing, just wanted to be sure. Hey, you better get going, wouldn't want to keep them waiting," I swiped tears from my cheeks, and they nodded and gave me one last hug before closing their eyes and vanishing.
I sighed heavily and walked down the streets back to my apartment, head hung low.
I tossed and turned, not able to get any sleep. It was like this every time I saw them. I was reminded of what I left in Cephiro, and guilt swam in. I wondered if they missed me.
I got up and knew that I had to reassure myself that being loved in return was better than not being loved. I stood and got changed. I grabbed a bag of clothes and locked my door. I walked down the silent streets of Tokyo and wondered at the beauty the night brought to the city. I breathed in the air but wasn't refreshed. This wasn't country, this was city and as much as I loved it, it really couldn't hold a candle to Cephiro. I hated myself for thinking about that, but I couldn't help it.
I looked at his apartment building and rang the bell.
"Who is it?" his muffled voice appeared through the other end of the intercom.
"It's Umi, can I come up?" I asked meekly.
"Umi, yeah, come on in," he sounded surprised.
I smiled as the door opened, and I was allowed in. He met me at the door and looked at my tear-streaked face.
"God, what's wrong?" he pulled me into the apartment and shut the door behind him.
"Nothing," I shook my head, but he wouldn't take that for an answer as he took my coat. I threw my bag down on the ground and looked into his concerned brown eyes. "Something."
"Come on," he took my wrist and led me into the apartment. He set me down on the couch and made some tea. When it was finished he handed me a cup and sat near me.
"You have to promise me something," I instructed him, not completely prepared to tell him this but needing to tell him all the same.
"Anything," he responded, and I nodded to myself, ready to tell.
"You have to promise not to go to the police or think I'm crazy or something."
"Okay," he was wary.
"I didn't kill someone or smuggle drugs or anything if that's what you're thinking," I put his mind at ease, and a small grin crossed his lips.
"I didn't think anything like that…"
"Sure you didn't," I teased, and he smiled.
"But really, what's wrong?"
"You know how Fuu and Hikaru don't live around here?"
"Well," I tried to figure out how to put this, "they really don't live around here."
"What are you talking about? They come to see you like every other week."
"That's because they have instant transportation," I tried to explain. I took a sip of tea and looked into his eyes. "They use magic to get here, because they live in another world."
His face paled, and his eyes were confused, "What is that supposed to mean, they're crazy or schizophrenic or…"
"No," I stopped him, "they really don't live on Earth, literally. They live in a world called Cephiro, a world that we were called on to defend six years ago. We did so, with our lives. It cost a lot, but we kept them safe. Fuu and Hikaru moved there because they fell in love. They come to see me because there's a portal in the Tokyo Tower that the Magic Knights can get through. We're the Magic Knights, the protectors of the land. Something is wrong there, and I think that I have to go back."
With my words I realized the reason I had to tell him. It was because I was prepared to leave. My eyes swerved to the bag in the corner. My subconscious was sending me signals, I was going back.
"Umi," he took my shoulders, "I think you've been studying too hard or something."
"No," I looked at him. "I'm not sick or anything, please, if you love me, you'll believe me."
He shook his head and tried to believe, but I couldn't see any hint of belief in his eyes.
"Come with me," I took his hand. "Just pack a bag and get dressed, please, I'll prove to you I'm not crazy."
He nodded carefully and walked into his room.
In another ten minutes we were heading down the sidewalk toward the Tokyo Tower. In a moment I had broken into the Tower, and we were on the observation deck.
"Don't be scared," I whispered to him and took his hand. "Everything will be okay."
"Take this Water Mage home to Cephiro where trouble stirs," I whispered, and we were thrown through a portal. When we opened our eyes we were standing in a field, ahead of us was a shimmering ivory palace shaped like three swords.
For a long time Nori just stood and stared, before I urged him forward gently, and he followed me, completely stiff.
"Umi, tell me I'm dreaming."
"You're not dreaming, you're in Cephiro."
I was so happy that I was here again, but still…there was something wrong. I could feel darkness in the air. I decided that I would first seek out Clef and find out what was happening. I knew that he would also help me explain to the others why I had been absent.
We walked into the palace, hand-in-hand, both timid for two different reasons. I led him down winding passageways and hallways that seemed to vanish in the dark.
"I can't believe this is happening," he mumbled to himself, and I smiled.
"Trust me, I was in much more shock the first time I came here," I smirked at what had taken place the first time I had come here. How painful would it be to see him again?
I pushed it out of my mind and knocked on the door to Clef's study where I could almost always find him.
"Who is it and what do you want?" he snapped from inside. "Better be a good reason too, or I'm not opening this door."
"Not even for the return of the Magic Knight of Water?" I teased from the other side of the door.
A word, and the doors flung open. In front of me stood the Master Mage of Cephiro, or so I thought. "Umi?"
"Clef?" I couldn't believe my eyes. He had grown; he was taller than me by far. His robes were black and his headpiece had changed. His lavender hair fell down his face in teasing waves, and his body was mature. He was handsome.
"It is you," he whispered and took me into a tight embrace. "God where have you been?"
"I've been on Earth, some stuff happened. Time got away from me, I didn't want you to be angry with me."
"Angry with you? Never! Well…" he thought about it and shook his head, grinning slightly. "We were worried sick about you. I mean, Fuu and Hikaru promised us you were fine, but…it's much more reassuring to see you in person."
His eyes scanned me over, and I blushed under his calm blue eyes that never changed and always managed to make me smile and blush. Only when Nori cleared his throat did Clef turn his eyes to the man next to me. "And this is?"
"Oh I'm sorry! Clef this is Nori, Nori this is Clef," I introduced them.
"Pleased to meet you," Nori bowed slightly to Clef, but Clef stayed ridged.
"Nori is my boyfriend, Clef is the Master Mage here; he's the most powerful sorcerer in all of Cephiro," I explained to each. I thought I saw pain flash in Clef's eyes with my words.
"Oh," Clef mumbled and nodded his quiet approval. "They'll be so happy you're back Umi," he changed the subject but wouldn't let his eyes meet mine.
I stopped him, knowing that he was going to go on and on with no end. I put a stop to it with my quick words, "I'm not here for pleasure Clef."
His eyes shot down, and he shook his head, "As I thought. Heaven forbid you be back to see the people that used to mean the world to you."
"Not fair," I glared, and he waved it off.
"I have never been fair Umi, only truthful," he lectured and waved his staff. The doors shut behind us, and he led us deep into his study. He summoned three chairs, and we each took a seat. Nori touched the chair hesitantly before I assured him it was real, and he sat, still on edge.
Clef shook his head, whether in amusement of annoyance I couldn't tell, one never could with Clef.
"But you've felt it too," I pushed the subject.
He nodded, "I have."
"What is it? I'm worried. I had a dream that the portal would close, and I would be alone on Earth."
"So you came here to make sure that didn't happen?" he smiled at me. "Glad to know you still think about us."
"Of course I do! Stuff happens Clef," I looked down.
"Gomen nasai Umi-chan," he whispered, and the moment was only pulled when I felt Nori's eyes flare up in rage.
I felt words brimming on his lips, and quickly silenced him with a hand on his arm. He calmed, slightly.
Clef cleared his throat and began again.
I laughed to myself. If Nori was jealous now, I thought to myself, wait till he meets Ascot.
"There is a dark force growing in the north, and we're gathering a light force here in the south. Something is calling upon the three Dark Lords to take over Cephiro. If the Dark Lords aren't stopped there will be a terrible civil war and most of Cephiro will be lost," Clef explained solemnly. "I was going to summon you as soon as I knew more."
"Once you knew more?" I almost screamed. "God Clef this could have wiped out all of Cephiro before you knew more! I could have been stuck on Earth with no way to reach any of you! Do you know what I would have done if I had lost any of you?"
"Gomen nasai Umi, don't cry," he begged, and I nodded and wiped tears.
"No more 'when you know more' nonsense. Clef, you don't have to do everything, that's why you have Magic Knights. For once, trust us to do some things for ourselves okay?"
He nodded, "But now I trust you to find some sleep. You remember where your room is?"
"Good, then I can show Nori to his room."
"Uh…" Nori began, but I shook my head. "Arigato."
"Breakfast is at the same time," Clef told me, and I nodded again.
We walked out to the hall together, and Nori pulled me into the doorway of Clef's study.
"I don't know what's happening Umi, I don't know what any of this is about. I just want you to know that whatever happens I'm by your side the whole way."
"Arigato," I smiled to him. "I'm sorry I yelled at you today."
"That's okay, I should have known better."
"Night," I kissed him softly, and he nodded and let me go.
As we parted ways I felt blue eyes on me. I didn't dare meet them to see what they held.
*Hope you like. Um…new Tori CD! I'm going to the concert too! HA! So excited *sighs*, so all the quotes for this story will most likely be from the new CD.*
Strange, Tori Amos, Scarlet's Walk
"Woke up to a world
That I am not a part
Except when I can play
After all what were you really looking for?
And I wonder when will I learn?
Blue isn't red, everybody knows this
And I wonder when will I learn?
When will I learn?
Guess I was in
Deeper than I thought I was
If I have enough love
For the both of us
'Just stay,' you said, 'we'll build a nest'
So I left my life
Tried on your friends
Tried on your opinions"