A/N: Both this and 'Hats Off!" were written in one night and I was extremely tired while I was cleaning them up, so forgive me for any typos, yeah? Also, get a tissue. You'll understand why when you get to the end.
"All good things must come to an end." -Q, Star Trek: The Next Generation
While Diana bathed, a meeting was called.
While she slipped into bed, a decision was being made.
When she finally marched off to sleep, an army was on its way to end her life.
This was one of the proudest moments of Diana's life.
She'd never dreamed she be able to get so close to the front of crowd, waiting eagerly for her arrival. There was a woman who had the power of their ancestors. The Solari called her the 'Chosen of the Sun'. This had never happened before! Diana couldn't allow herself to miss such an event, so she pulled her head from her sketchbook and found her way to the path that would take her to the top of Mount Targon. It took a few elbows and gentle shoves, but soon she was near the front, arriving just in time to watch the near-mythical woman stride.
There was something about her- her long hair, her unbreakable will, and a smile that may as well have cured diseases- that instantly got Diana's attention. Even while flanked by Solari guards, she exuded a warmness that made you want to hug her. She didn't realize it, but her mouth was open in awe; that is until the woman turned her radiant smile upon her. Diana felt her heart lock up and almost instantly pulled her sketchbook to her face like a shy child. Leona- that was her name; how you remember things at the strangest of times! –chuckled slightly before returning to the crowd.
Diana wanted to strike herself for responding so foolishly, but instead, she took a deep breath and ran a finger through her blonde hair, watching her continue up the path. Just under the well of happiness that filled her heart, the tiniest stirrings of jealousy loomed in the dark. As she walked away from the crowd, she turned her eyes to her sketchbook and the crescent moon plastered in the center of the page. Maybe one day people would revere the moon too one day. Maybe people would be cheering for her one day. Diana, She Who United the Sun and Moon! She chuckled, taking a seat against the wall and began to scribble Leona's armor. She was much too old to be having such stupid ideas.
It was a message only the moon could send her, the words breaking through her sleepy subconscious: They've found you. Having trained for this for several months, she had her armor donned and her khopesh in her hand as she strode to the front of the temple. The 'Sanctuary' as she called it was still in ruin- she simply hadn't had time to clean everything up. What she did have time for, was a device that would signal her impending end. In the very center of the room, was a skylight that bathed the large room in twilight. Casting a shadow over the moonlight was a large torch. Standing in the center of the shadow, Diana raised her Khopesh to the sky. A burst of lunar energy bloomed forth, sending a pillar of light directly to the sky.
Those that believed her and put their lives into her- no, their faith- would know what to do. "All the players to their stages," She said to a room full of ghosts. "It's time for the final act."
"You cannot do this to me!" Diana yelled, trying to break free of her metal bonds. "All I've done is show you the truth-" At the mention of the word, a sharp palm struck her face. "Truth?!" One of the elders exploded. "You shower our people with false knowledge and impure ideals! You try to turn our people from the path of the sun! You are a heretic-"
As another elder caught the man's shoulder, the word burned into her soul like a curse. I'm a… Heretic? The word bound her into silence as she was dragged through the streets. There were cries of anguish from those who loved her, the quiet but sweet woman who kept to herself. There were cries of justice from those who wanted her stoned or burned or worse, the false prophet feasting among their sheep. Instead, she was being dragged to the private execution field, behind the Elder Dwelling. Only under the most grievous of Treason would someone be brought to answer for their crimes in private.
As they reached the 'killing fields' as they were called, Diana saw the raised Dais that would be her place of death ,and felt something bubbling within her, something that she thought she locked away long ago.
Anger. Fury in its purest form. She didn't just want to be free. She wanted them to be hurt, killed. As she ascended the steps, she began to shudder. With a rough kick to the back of her leg, she fell to her knees, eyes locked on the eldest among them, raising a sword to drive it to her heart. A single word escaped her lips: "Why?"
"You don't understand, and you never will. It is the sun that rouses us from our bed. It is the sun that breathes life into our grain. It is the sun gave us the power to protect ourselves. A heretic like you," His words burned like their God. "Would never understand."
At the mention of the word, she exploded.
"The sun burns and blinds and scathes and you worship it? I showed you the truth, brought you writings and armor and all the proof I could carry, and you still worship a false idol!
"I am not the heretic!" Diana screamed at the top of her lungs. "You are the heretics!"
As if he were driven by the sun himself, the man ran Diana through with all the force he could muster.
Diana's body seared with fire, but went deathly cold the moment he retracted the blade. "Burn, heretic." He spat, before turning to walk away. On her back and still bound, Diana's head fell to the left, and she watched as her blood spilled to the side of the dais. "Break bonds…stop bleeding…" She tried to whisper, but her body was rapidly entering Rigor Mortis. With each second her body was giving in to the sweet release of death, so rather than fight it, she turned her head to the moon. "Goodnight, moon." Her mouth opened and closed, and with it came a sense of finality.
And then, she was alive.
Diana did not fully understand at the time, but what she knew was that her bonds were broken, the dilapidated armor and crescent blade had regained their luster, and flowing through her veins was the delicious drug of vengeance. Even under their hoods, Diana could see their faces beget nothing but shock and horror. The one that struck her down raised the blade again, but as if she had been doing it her entire life, a flick of her arm sent a bolt of lunar energy into the man's body.
He screamed as the sword fell from his hands, but faster than the eye could follow, Diana fell upon him like a vengeful moon and cut the head from his shoulders. Watching the remaining men back away, Diana pointed her weapon towards them, pointing at each of them through a slow arc. "You call me heretic, but the words of dead men have no meaning."
Radiating scorn, the fury of the moon was unparalleled.
At the very back of the Temple, there was an exit that lead to a clearing. In the center of this clearing Diana knelt, praying to the moon a final time. "We will be one. I will not lose my way." The heavy clop of armor crunching against grass broke her stupor. Returning to her feet, Diana pulled her sword from the ground, only to come face to face with her idol, her enemy, her love-
No. A field of enemies is all I see.
Instead, she gave the woman a bow. "Greetings, Solari. I admit, I didn't think myself worthy of such poetic justice."
"Diana," The Scorn of the Moon had never heard this woman angry, but she stood firm. "I… I am sorry, but this is what must be."
"Can I not decide what must be?" She motioned to the army that stood behind her. "You all have let old, decrepit cowards decide your destiny! When do you speak for yourselves?"
"Diana!" Such scorn. This time, she actually took a step back. "This is between you and I."
"No." Diana shook her head. "It is between your belief and mine."
Raising her arm, Diana closed a fist, and several shadows began to move from the darkness of the trees. "In those trees were my followers. These people are the ones who saw the moonlight. What you fail to understand is that I've already accomplished what I set out to do. The Lunari are no longer extinct, nor are they simply a people. The Lunari are an idea, a philosophy, and a truth." Diana said the word with vigor, but Leona neither yielded nor showed shock.
"All of these things, my misguided hero," Diana exclaiming, slamming the side of her fist into her heart. "Live forever."
"You are none of those things, Diana." Raising her shield and sword, Leona took a step forward. "Your dawn has arrived."
Diana sighed, breaking her gaze. "You call me Diana. You treat me like a human. You gave me a chance. No one else did. Even though you must kill me, I can see the pain in your eyes to hold that blade, because you see yourself in my eyes."
Leona relented for a moment, but during her brief retreat, Diana raised her blade, letting a single tear slide down her cheek. "If my hero must die so my ideals can live, so be it!"
Not a soul uttered a word during the clash of steel. While Tournesol and Moonsilver sang their metal opera, their wielders were deftly calm, constantly probing for a weakness of any kind. What few clouds peppered the sky released the slightest of torrents, but even the rain withheld its voice as sun and moon eclipsed time and time again. Diana was fast, and her magic thrived in close combat, but Leona was a vanguard, able to take twice as much as she dished out. Diana's armor couldn't compare, but she was able to dodge rather than block.
Leona saw this, and took her chance.
With a mighty bellow, Leona raised her shield and charged. Unable to move quickly enough, Diana raised her blade to take the blow, but the force threw her off balance. Raising her sword, Leona swung with the fury of the slain elders. The Lunari's armor was torn asunder, and blood bloomed from the deep cut of the legendary Tournesol.
Diana fell to the wet grass, out of breath. Leona too was haggard, but she kept her sword arm up. Diana's eyes fell to the blood rapidly soaking the grass as it flowed from her chest. She tried to pull herself to her feet, but her body refused, so there she lay, in a pool of her own blood, as her hero prepared to finish her task. "If you would permit me," Diana surprised herself with how quickly her voice was leaving her body. "I have a question."
Leona was wary of her intentions, but nodded. "Continue."
"You forgive, me don't you? If you lead the Rakkor, you would have spared me, wouldn't you?"
Of all the questions she was expecting, this was not one of them. "You were mistreated. The elders made a mistake and paid the price. This does not excuse your crime, but-"
"Answer!" Diana yelled, before suddenly bringing about a coughing spell as she spat out blood.
"…Yes." Leona turned away, but caught Diana lips curve into a smile.
"You spineless oaf," She said with a chuckle, then another coughing spell.
Diana was no fool; her time had come, so she turned her face to the moon, and gave it a single, blissful smile. "So pretty," she murmured, as every living being in that clearing turned their eyes to the moon. There's was something enchanting about, almost inviting, as if part of it was coming home.
"Isn't it pretty?" Diana asked, feeling her eyes begin to darken.
"Yes, Diana," Kneeling, she placed her sword on the ground and took the woman's hand. "It truly is."
Diana's smile began to falter, her eyes began to fall, and her heart began to cease, but not before a final pleasure escaped her lips. "That's all I ever wanted. You finally see the moon…as I do…" Her voice trailed on the final word, and with one last, beautiful breath, Diana left the world as she entered it.
It began to rain. That was what Leona told herself, anyway.
There was no battle.
There was no violence.
There simply was a lost Rakkor finally coming home.
I warned you, didn't I? No, really, stop crying, its over. Now that you've calmed yourself down, maybe take some time and give me a review. Without reviews and favorites, I'm invisible, and that makes me sad. Don't let me be sad; be a hero! Click one of those buttons below!