DISCLAIMER: I do not own Harry Potter or Sailor Moon... I am merely using the ideas to try and create an entertaining story.
A/N: Just a quick note, many people, as the saying goes, see the spec in other's eyes, but not the plank in their own... that is why Draco is reacting as he is. Sorry I just got so many comments about that I realised I needed to explain even if just a little. Hope that made some things easier to understand. )
This time she cut him off, "I'm the Hotaru who has been an outcast since she was a child, I'm the Hotaru whose father went mad with power and killed her in an experiment only for him to make a deal with the negaverse and bring me back to life... I'm the same Hotaru who went to Hogwarts this year for 'protection' from Voldemort and two scums that the inners once loved, and I'm the same Hotaru who ran into you in Diagon Alley, quite literally might I add."
"You delude yourself Saturn. Hotaru Tomoe was an act to you." He whispered. She lied. She lied. She lied. She's lying again. this repeated in his mind.
"I am not deluding anyone Malfoy-san." She whispered brokenly. He was hurting her beyond belief. She could almost physically feel her heart breaking as his angry gaze hardened and just knowing that anger was directed to her made it worse.
"Leave me alone Saturn."
Chapter 22 - Forgive my Ignorance
"N-not until I have finished." she cursed her voice for cracking with her tears there. "I am the same Hotaru who you showed around the castle with Mina the day we arrived at the school, the same Hotaru that was placed into Gryffindor by a hat that knew she was a Senshi, the same girl you watched the clouds with, and the same girl who gave Hogwarts the ice skating show on the lake... but above all that... I'm the same Hotaru Tomoe who fell in love with you, no matter who else I may also be..." her voice was soft and only now did she break eye contact with him.
Silence fell over the two as Hotaru closed her eyes swiped her tears, and shakily stood up again. She walked cautiously towards her bed until her legs got used to her weight again. She looked back at Draco once only to find his face still impassive. A soft sob escaped her as she turned away from the bed and slowly made her way to leave the hospital wing, holding onto anything she could for support.
"Your majesty stop this instant!" sounded a yell that resounded throughout the wing. Hotaru stopped and turned around to find the angry healer bustling over to her and without warning she collapsed to the floor, her weakened legs giving out unexpectedly. "You milady, Senshi or not, should not be out of bed! You've only just woken up by the looks of you, and your body has not even had enough time to replenish all of your life energy let alone your magical energy."
He reached down and helped Hotaru to her feet again, leading the weakened, crying girl back to her bed and helping her into it. "How long was I out?"
"Two days milady. Your foolish use of some of your life energy has had you in a coma like state since Prince Delano brought you back."
"Wait the others-"
"Are perfectly fine milady. The Senshi await you to regain your strength before the meeting shall be held- from what I gathered- to explain things."
"I see... Thank you."
"Oh and your mother and father, your highness, have been called back to their domains. I was told to inform you of this when you awoke." All Hotaru did this time was nod as she did all she could to keep her gaze away from Draco. She could feel his piercing gaze on her and she knew that if she saw his angry eyes again she would not be able to take it. The healer had been good not to comment on her tears.
Hotaru turned slowly onto her side so her back faced Draco as she watched the healer type some information into the silver screen on the end of her bed.
"Oh your highness you are awake!"
"What?" Hotaru began to shift slowly around to get a better look at the healer but he came up behind her on the bed and began to cast a sleeping spell on her, "Don't knock me out-" she whispered as she finally rolled onto her back, but too late as she began to feel the drowsing effects of the spell.
"Your highness your mother and father wish to see you in the conference hall as soon as you are able enough to leave."
"But you just told me they left-" Hotaru mumbled nearly incoherently.
"I apologise milady. I'm not referring to the monarchs of Saturn; I'm speaking to Prince Draconis here." Though she did not see whom he had indicated his words were the last thing she heard as her vision swam and unconsciousness took her.
Moon Palace, Conference Hall; Four Days Later.
Hotaru sat tiredly in a chair being supported on one side by her presumed dead friend and father figure, Princess Amara of Uranus, and on the other by Princess Michelle of Neptune. Each had a gentle arm wrapped around her shoulders and were trying to cheer up a heart broken Hotaru though she had not told them of what had upset her so much.
As the great double doors opened in the conference room and the Royal families of Earth and the Moon entered the conference room each royal Senshi stood, except Hotaru who was still somewhat weak and attempting to coach her face into indifference. "We apologise for keeping you all waiting, but some off world negotiations took a little longer than expected." Smiled Neo-Queen Serenity, as she stood by her mother with Neo-King Endymion on her other side. Since her return to 'life', Serenity had not parted for even a moment from her husband.
"It is quite alright Your Highness. Shall we start then?" smiled Princess Michelle, retaking her seat as the monarchs took theirs. Michelle glanced quickly at Hotaru and noticed that she had not looked up from her lap since the entrance of the lunarian royals.
"Very well, I'm sure the question burning on everyone's minds is 'how?', am I right?" Setsuna stated passively as she glanced around the table. Seeing Princess Reia, Prince Harlan, and Princess Minako nod sharply she continued, "It is a long and strange story, but I will start from the beginning."
"Firstly girls I think we all owe you an apology, but I especially. The night Voldemort attacked, I knew long before hand that it would happen so to prevent the deaths of so many Senshi; I was given permission to change what should have happened. Mars. Venus. Saturn. I apologise for the pain you were put through, but it had to be done-"
"But -how- Pluto? How did you bring them back to life? We 'saw' the bodies, we saw all the blood and we saw the heads... it was..." Mina stopped there as she closed her eyes and swallowed to keep the tears behind her eyes and the bile in her throat at bay.
Pluto glanced down for a moment, seemingly ashamed before she drew a breath and looked up again, "You remember the beach trip you took that day... well I managed to speak to Mercury through her communicator, informing her that in order to save her life and that of Her Majesty, Jupiter, Uranus and Neptune, she would have to inform the others to await my arrival that evening and leave with me when the time came."
"What!" exclaimed Reia, eyes narrowing.
"Princess Reia." came the calm voice of King Apollo as he gave her a sharp glance, "allow Setsuna to finish. Please continue Pluto."
"Thank your Majesty. I waited until you three were asleep, and I arrived at Tomoe Manor. After explaining to each of these five what would happen they agreed to let fate take its desired course and they left with me, however we created... I guess duplicate images if you like, of the senshi and replaced them in the beds by the senshi. They were a bit like dummies really..."
"So you all tricked us." Hotaru's voice was quiet but it reverberated with pain.
"Taru-chan, if we had any other choice we would not have-"
"You could have taken us with you." Hotaru stated flatly looking up at the woman whom she had tried to forgive but was suddenly finding it incredibly hard not to scream and shout at.
"No my dear, believe me if that were an option, we would not have left you there. There is a reason for every event in life Hotaru, and there was a reason you three needed to see the so called carnage of your most beloved friends..."
(A/N: WARNING, Mina goes into somewhat gruesome detail here.)
"What reason!" exclaimed a horrified Minako, "You did not see the blood, the gore... the heads of five friends you thought of as sisters separated from their bodies and scattered about the room like a child's play balls! You did not awake with veins that were not yours, on your neck, or blood that was not yours, soaking through your clothing or the site of a lifeless body with a neck missing its head beside you! What possible reason could you have for putting us through all that!"
Prince Oliverio took a hold of Princess Minako's shaking shoulders and wrapped his arms carefully around his now near hysterical wife. Just hearing what the girls had witnessed made him feel queasy. The silence that followed was deafening in its anxiety as all those present barring Reia and Hotaru squirmed in their seats.
"I did see that scene-" Setsuna said softly but was cut off almost instantly by Princess Reia,
"Yes well Pluto, unlike us, you KNEW it was not real! Unlike us, you KNEW that what we saw were not actually our friends." Reia began to rise out of her seat, but Prince Harlan placed a restraining hand on her arm and held her down.
"Again, I know it will never be enough but I am sorry girls. It had to be done; fate had ordained it."
"Very well, let's assume there was no other option for a moment. Why had fate ordained it? For what purpose?" asked Queen Selenity glancing calmly at the Senshi of time.
"Fate and Destiny had agreed that certain people were to destroy the three men who were originally meant to kill the senshi. I bargained with fate and she agreed to let me save them if Mars, Saturn, and Venus did not find out I had made a switch until after all had taken place. You see destiny had already made a prophecy as to Voldemort's death through a human woman... though she had no great talent in foresight; Destiny saw fit to give her a premonition of his death. Prince Harlan was the man that prophesy had dictated about but he did not have the power that Voldemort 'knew not' because well frankly he did not know he was Prince Harlan of Jupiter. By the events of that night..." Pluto paused and noted the surprise dawning on Prince Harlan's face before continuing, "Princess Reia, because of that night you were introduced to the human wizarding world and you were able to find him. As your fiancé, you returned to him the ability to use his royal powers by returning his memories and your pain from the night that 'lost you your sisters in arms' added onto his own feeling of duty, giving his heart a reason to kill Voldemort again."
Reia eyed Pluto uncertainly, "Ok so that explains me, but why Minako and Hotaru?"
"Princess Minako, you met your husband at Hogwarts too did you not?" getting a nod for the Venusian couple Pluto continued, "And You Prince Oliverio, you took Malachite's life when he attacked your beloved wife did you not?" Again she received another nod, "Then it happened as fate decreed it. Prince Oliverio, you were destined to kill Malachite the traitor in your last life but the fate of the Silver Millennium interfered so you were to take that chance in this life... of course you had no reason to hate Malachite in this life so Venus, you were sent to your love, and your love was all the reason, I believe, that Oliverio needed to destroy the traitor."
"I couldn't let him hurt Minako. When he tried I retaliated-"
Pluto cut him off knowing that Minako would not want everyone to know just how Malachite had tried to hurt her, "As it was decreed you would do."
"Ok I guess I can accept that Pluto, but what about Hotaru?"
"Prince Harlan would not have been successful in his attempts with out Prince Draconis, and Saturn had given him yet another reason to hate Voldemort. His love for Saturn made him tempt fate with his life in order to give Harlan the opportunity to destroy the Terran Dark Lord."
"Who?" asked Hotaru confused, "Ok I've heard that name a few times, but I don't know any 'Prince Draconis's... I know Draco even though he doesn't-" Hotaru cut herself off as she looked down, unable to continue what she was saying.
"Don't you know?" asked Michelle slightly surprised.
"Know what?" Hotaru glanced up at the Neptunian Princess
"Draco is Prince Draconis. His memories were awakened by King Apollo and Queen Selenity while they were here on the moon." Stated Ami just as surprised as Michelle at Hotaru's ignorance to the fact, "I thought you of all people would have known this Hotaru."
"What?" she whispered in shock as her eyes flew to the man sitting beside King Apollo. He does sort of look like Drac- Oh my gods! Hotaru's eyes widened as the disillusionment spell vanished with her knowledge and she could hardly believe her eyes. "Draco-chan?"
Prince Draconis looked at Hotaru, who was still in the white hospital wing robes, and nodded once, before turning his hardened gaze back to Pluto. Hotaru gaped at him but before a word could be said, Pluto continued, "Do you all understand now?"
"I believe so... so in short, we were made to believe the others were murdered by Voldemort in order for these three," Reia indicated Princes Harlan, Draconis and Oliverio, "to destroy the leaders of the threat on the Terran. One question though..." Pluto nodded for her to continue, "Why on Earth didn't Fate and Destiny just decree one of us to kill them? We could have easily done so."
Pluto sighed and gave one of her rare smiles, "I do not know, nor will I ever find out... but I assume they thought that would be too boring... I expect that they must keep amused somehow."
Prince Harlan rolled his eyes and quirked the corner of his mouth in an exasperated smirk, "We've fallen to the status of court jesters? Never knew our lives were tools of such great entertainment..." Reia's hand rested on Harlan's chest as she leaned next to his ear whispering something making Harlan's face lose the playful smirk, turning straight into a pout. "Oh... but Reia we had plans tonight."
"No buts, we're going."
"Ok what are you two on about?" Makoto asked with a cheeky grin on her face.
"Not what you're thinking Mako." Reia gave her an irritated look, blushing slightly, "If we're finished here, Harlan and I need to return to the Terran for a short period of time, firstly to speak with Dumbledore and secondly to retrieve our things. Setsuna, I think you need to come with us as well."
"Yes I think everything has been said. Of course I will come with you. Someone valid needs to explain to them what has happened."
"Are you saying we're invalid?" Reia quirked an eyebrow as she rose, bowed to their hosts, and left with Pluto and Prince Harlan. With their exit, others began to rise realising that the meeting was over, but all the while, Hotaru just sat and stared in shock at Prince Draconis.
Draconis felt the hole being burned into his face by someone's gaze but he dared not look for the culprit. His gut instinct told him it was Hotaru and he could not look at her at the moment because he truly felt like a hypocrite after the stunned and somewhat angry gaze Hotaru had stared at him with. As he made his way to the door of the room, he chanced a glance back at the Saturnian Princess only to have his eyes locked in by her angry gaze. "Michi-chan, Mara-chan, you go ahead, I'm fine and I need a private word with Prince Draconis."
"Are you sure Firefly?" asked Princess Amara glancing suspiciously between Hotaru and Draconis.
"I'm positive. I'll be fine, and I can walk normally now." Smiled Hotaru but her gaze never left Draco's.
"Ok we'll see you at dinner Firefly." Amara and Michele both kissed the top of Hotaru's head before walking out of the room with everyone else.
Once the room had cleared of everyone but Draco and Hotaru, silence reigned. Hotaru broke eye contact with Draco for only a moment to cast a silence barrier around the room before her gaze returned to his and she rose out of her seat slightly. "How could you?" she whispered, glaring at him, "How 'dare' you accuse me of untruthfulness when you yourself were lying!" her anger quickly built up but through her own body's weakness, she could do no more than glare at him as she inched around the table.
"I... I never lied to you Hotaru, you simply never asked and when I was with you not much else mattered at those times." He stated plainly though the hardness in his gaze was slowly being replaced by guilt.
"I never told you I was 'not' Saturn either!"
"Your trips to Earth were a lie-"
"I was ordered to do that! Do you think if I had a choice I would have left at all! Do you even understand how much it tore me up every time I gave you those rubbish excuses? And above all that you cannot stand there and accuse me of being a liar you hypocrite." She had finally made it around to his side of the table and was leaning against it, her body tired but her eyes painfully angry.
"I am not a hypocrite-"
"You're lying again." She stated almost emotionlessly.
"You 'are' a hypocrite so your statement was just a lie, and I was talking about your accusations in the hospital wing. You yourself are two people at once so why can't you understand that I can be the same?" Hotaru's eyes pleaded with him to, well to do something.
"It- it is not the same."
"Liar." She hissed angrily.
"I am not-"
"YES. YOU. ARE. You lied both now and before. You lied before whenever you claimed you had any form of feelings for me whether it was friendship or romantic. Remember at the fair, you told me you could never hate me, even if you wanted to? That was a lie too, because you obviously must hate me to make me believe that you had any feelings for me and then to throw all this back in my face-" she held up a hand and glared at Draco when he opened his mouth to protest, "Let me finish. You-"
"No, let 'me' finish." He walked briskly forward till he stood just in front of the princess glaring at her, "I never, not once, lied to you when I told you I had romantic feelings for you. NEVER insinuate that I did. I loved you! I still love you. But how can I ever trust you! You lied to me, not once but countless times! How could you Hotaru? You are the only person I ever confided in, the only one up until quite recently that I ever trusted, and even after my memories were unlocked, I was still weary of everyone except you! After all you and I said to each other, did together, you betrayed my trust! How the hell can you love me? Love does not lie!"
"I HAD NO CHOICE! You were not allowed to know! Do you think if it was up to me I would have kept it from you! I was ORDERED TO! It was, is and always will be my duty to follow my Queen's -your mother's- orders! But what would you know about that. You've never died for duty. You've never had to do something with your heart breaking silently as you did it. You know what Draco? You're right. This can't be love. Love can't hurt this bad, and if it does, then I DON'T WANT IT!" She glared at him with so much anger and pain in her amethyst eyes that Draco had to catch himself before he stepped back. When Hotaru started to walk past him, he grabbed her arm somewhat forcefully.
Hotaru stumbled slightly but managed to right her self quickly enough, "We're not finished here."
Hotaru's glare intensified, "YES we are." She tried with all her might to rip her arm out of Draco's hand but in her weakened state and with Draco's strength, she could not. "Let me go Prince Draconis. You told me to leave you alone so that is exactly what I am doing." Her glare did not vanish for a second though her tears had begun to fall again.
Draco held on a moment more before his glare softened and he let go of her. Hotaru, not missing a beat, turned and left through the main door of the conference hall with a stubborn idea in mind as she went to seek out Neo-Queen Serenity.
Earth, Crystal Tokyo Throne Room; Late afternoon.
Hotaru did not budge an inch as the shocked gazes of Neo-King Endymion and Neo-Queen Serenity bore into her kneeling form. "You cannot be serious Taru..." whispered the shocked queen gazing at her long time friend and guardian.
"Your Majesty I am very serious. With the other Senshi alive and well my protection is no longer utterly necessary and my weakened body has been losing the normally iron control it has over Mistress 9. My voluntary sleep is the only laudable solution I have been able to come up with." Hotaru though unmoving, was feeling the strain of kneeling unsupported in front of her lieges.
Though her losing battle was not entirely accurate, Hotaru knew that unless she came up with a sufficient threat to the Neo-Silver Alliance, Neo King Endymion and Neo Queen Serenity would not agree to place her in stasis. I don't want to feel love if love is so much pain. I can't stand knowing that he will one day be with someone else, love someone else, marry someone else, make love to someone else, have children with someone else, wake up adoring someone else... someone who is not me. The turmoil going through her mind did not show on her stone passive features. Saturn help me get through this. Hotaru pleaded silently as Endymion turned to his wife.
Hotaru's heart dropped as she watched the Queen of Crystal Tokyo shake her head. "No Firefly. That is not the answer. Your strength will return, the kingdom will have lost a valuable asset to the alliance for nothing... and I'll have lost a sister."
"But Your majesty-"
"No Saturn. Hotaru your request is denied." The King's firm dismissal rang through the hall.
Hotaru looked down for a moment, in all appearances having given up, before she looked up again and locked eyes with serenity, "Then please allow me to return to my home where I can be of less threat to the alliance and able to regenerate much faster near the Saturnian Stone of Silence."
Earth, Hogwarts; evening.
Harry grinned at Rei and Setsuna as they walked up to the great hall doors. "This is most definitely going to be... interesting to say the least." the nod that Rei passively gave him made him smile, "Pyro, what's in the past should remain there. Come now. I want a smile before we go in there and face the music... well our ex-peers at any rate." he rested his hands on Rei's shoulders as he locked gazes with her.
Rei sighed and turned her gaze to watch Setsuna stride past them with a smile gracing her own features. Harry lifted a hand to her cheek and turned her face back to him as he quirked an eyebrow at her mischievously. Catching the look in his eyes Rei began to lean away from Harry only to be suddenly pulled into a very close embrace which effectively blocked all chance of escape. "Harlan-"
"Uh. Shhhh…" Though Rei could not see the grin, she could sure as hell feel it.
"I will not be shushed." Rei mumbled half annoyed, half amused as she lightly jabbed Harry's side with her fingers. "I'm not in the mood Har-ry."
Harry grinned as he heard the usually collected Princess stumble over her speech. He returned to nuzzling his face into her shoulder as he nipped it again with his teeth for good measure, causing Rei to gasp again. "Smile for me then and I'll stop…"
The breath blowing gently along her shoulders sent shivers down her spine as it tickled the fine, invisible hairs on her bare skin. Sighing at her stupidity for wearing a thin strapped red dress, Rei smiled and kissed Harry's cheek causing him to look up and stop his enticing movements. "Will you stop now?" she asked softly, smile not leaving her face.
Harry pouted then grin dropping a light kiss on her temple before pulling away and grinning, "Ok I'll stop… for now."
Rei could not help but laugh in exasperation at her lover. His appetite was insatiable. So with a blush creeping onto her cheeks and Harlan's, now back in his disguised form of Harry, arm wrapped snugly around her waist, the entered through the large doors of Hogwarts Rei constantly having to jab Harry with her elbow to keep his wandering hand in an acceptable place.
"So nice of you to join us… Now we may begin if you will take your seats at your house table."
Saturn, Temple; Afternoon the next day.
Hotaru sighed as she sat by the Saturnian Stone of Silence and watched the scene of her and Draco at Christmas recorded on the small crystal compact over and over again. For once she was thankful for the myths that surrounded this Sacred Stone for it kept all the annoying people with their annoying questions about her safety and well being far away. The only ones here to disturb her on occasion were the priests and priestesses whose lives were dedicated to the caretaking and prayer of the core crystal of Saturn's power.
Her tears had not stopped since she had woken up this morning in this quiet place and she was receiving a rather large headache as all normal people do when having cried long and hard. She wanted nothing more than to throw the compact away from her with enough force to shatter it and the scene of her and Draco hugging so contently in the snow but she just couldn't bring herself to do it. Hearing a slight murmur of voices coming down the hallway of the great temple, she sighed Must be time for the afternoon prayers…
Setting down the compact carefully on the edge of the stone basin that the glowing Saturn Stone was situated in, to collect the power flowing from its tip, Hotaru rose to her feet and slowly walked out the door, into the corridor. Passing the group that had come to pray at the stone without another thought Hotaru mindlessly wander about the temple, only coming to stop as she found herself on one of the upper level balconies made with ebony stones baring a striking similarity to black opals on earth.
"Hotaru snap out of it… From day one you were told the life of the Soldier of Silence was a lonely existence." Hotaru's voice was soft, but then she really hadn't been speaking to anyone but herself and yet this thought made matters worse, "great… Now I'm talking to myself; way to be a loon firefl- Hotaru."
Putting the nickname as best she could out of her mind Hotaru turned her attention to the view that this mountain peek temple gave of the landscape below, that surrounded the capital. It was a glorious view in the warm afternoon sun and though the fields and forest and even the city itself looked warm and alive, Hotaru couldn't help the shiver that ran down her spine as her tears began again and her headache worsened. She was so absorbed in her attempts to think of nothing that when a pair of hands touched her shoulders and began to massage them she nearly fell off the balcony railing where she was leant against.
Spinning around and knocking the relaxing hands off her shoulders Hotaru instantly fell into a defensive stance. Shock was the first thing to register on her tear covered face as she took in the blonde almost white hair and the silver armour with a golden crescent moon inlayed intricately in the front. "D-Draco?"
The man shook his head slightly and raised his hands in mock surrender as he backed off though the only look to grace his features was guilt and remorse, "No Princess Hotaru, not technically." His sigh seemed far away as he gazed out over the balcony behind her, "Like this I am known as Prince Draconis. I am sorry I took such a liberty with you…"
Hotaru blushed as he indicated her shoulders. Relaxing slightly Hotaru turned away from him and began to viciously wipe away her tears as they returned with a new intensity at seeing him in person, "Prince Draconis is there a reason you are here? I did as you asked. I've left you alone. What more do you wa-nt of me?" She cursed her voice for breaking but ignored the Prince behind her as she continued to swipe furiously at her eyes.
"I'm-" the pause in speech should have alerted her, it really should have, but in her hysterical state Hotaru was taken by total surprise as a pair of arms spun her around and encircled her tightly to a solid armour covered chest. "I'm so sorry Hotaru. So, so sorry. I know it's not enough for the hurt I've caused you but I am. I was hurt, and I felt betrayed but-"
Hotaru pushed just enough to force him to loosen his hold on her as she stepped back and looked him in the eyes, "Prince Draconis you are rambling Sire. Did they not feed you properly at the palace when you arrived?" Though the tears still stubbornly carved rivers into her cheeks, Hotaru schooled her face into indifference- an expression well known to most anyone in the royal household.
"Please don't Hotaru. Please don't do this. I love-"
"Don't do what your highness?" The question seemed innocent enough, but Hotaru knew it had stung him, and though it hurt her all the more to hurt him, she refused to fall into his arms like a helpless damsel in distress. Her trust of men had still yet to grow and with Draco's new blow to it, she could not help but wonder what he would do to it if she gave it to him once more or if he was even sincere in his actions.
"You know exactly what I'm talking about Taru-chan."
"What? Don't do what you did?"
Draconis flinched and looked down, "Okay, I deserved that. I came to apologise and hopefully receive forgiveness… I know I hurt you when I said I never would but- Look Taru I've never apologised to anyone before you and doing it as best I know how. I'm willing to do anything to make it up to you but please just give me the chance…" he paused for a moment, looking away from Hotaru's accusatory amethyst eyes still dripping tears. He took a moment more before he looked up again and took a step forward.
"Why?" Hotaru's soft voice flitted along the breeze that had just picked up, barely making it to his ears.
"Why what?" asked Draconis lifting his hand and brushing the back of his fingers against her moist cheek.
Hotaru allowed herself to enjoy his touch this time, eyes drifting closed as she mumbled her reply, "Why are you here? Why are you sorry? Why am I even listening to this?"
Draconis leaned forward and brushed a kiss across her temple, watching as Hotaru's eyes flew open while she attempted to step back only to have her leg collide with the railing of the balcony, "I am here to apologise because I love you, I'm sorry for many things, most especially for implying you were a liar-"
"You did more than imply."
Brushing aside her statement Draco continued, "for ever hurting you, and for allowing my anger to take over my rationality. You are the Hotaru I fell in love with, the one I watched the clouds with, the one I watched skate, and the one I watched rip through the walls I put up to protect myself with no more than a smile, and gods I loved you for that. To answer your last question, firefly I believe you are still listening to me because you still love me too."
Hotaru looked away as her tears began to slow down. She did not speak nor move another inch for a long while, and Draconis did not move away either though her silence was making him uneasy. Finally she spoke again but she continued to stare off into the distant landscape to her left lit cheerfully by the late afternoon sun, "You hurt me Draco… so much. I never wanted to lie but I had no choice-"
"I know that now and I'm sorry for hurting you, for not trusting you. Gods Hotaru, if I could take it all back I would-" he paused as her gaze returned to his with a searching intensity in them that had him speechless for a moment. He was unsure as to what Hotaru had been looking for but whatever she found seemed to ease her for the next second Hotaru's arms had flown around him and she buried her head in his shoulder, sniffling softly. Not needing any more incentive, Draconis's arms instantly wound around her waist as he dropped a kiss on top of her hair.
They stayed in their tight embrace till long after the sun had begun to set and neither made a move until a chilled breeze blew past them causing Hotaru to shiver. "Maybe we should go inside before you catch a chill…" whispered Draconis though he trailed off as Hotaru quickly shook her head no.
"Just hold me… please Dra-chan." Not wanting to upset her again since her sniffling had finally subsided Draco pulled his cape around so it draped over her bare shoulders and wrapped his arms snugly around her again. He felt Hotaru shift her head so her head was now facing his neck, her breath unfortunately sending shivers down his spine. "Draco, I'm sorry, what you did is not alright with me, you knew I hardly trusted people and my phobia of most men isn't helping any but, I forgive you, and I hope you can forgive me for following such stupid orders.
Draconis could not help the enormous smile that spread along his face as he nudged Hotaru's face off his shoulder and lifted her chin enough with one of his hands to kiss her. It was not a hot, steamy, passionate kiss, but a soft almost chaste one which conveyed every fear of loss, every happiness and every forgiveness either could manage to express through something as simple as a kiss.
Pulling back Hotaru once more rested her head against Draconis's shoulder; unable to bring herself to leave this balcony for fear that she would find this to be a horribly cruel day dream. Both were so lost in their own thoughts and in the emotions evoked in such a simple hug that both jumped in shock when someone cleared their throat from the doorway.
"Shameful, absolutely shameful." Said a female voice laced with the cheek brought about by a grin and as they turned to the door they found both Queen Demona and Kind Hades standing side by side watching them. Hotaru's cheeks instantly turned bright red as Draco coughed into his fist to hide his embarrassment. "Either you have both forgotten your training or we really haven't lost our talent for stealth with age." The tall and beautifully dark woman's grin turned into a smile as she took her husband's hand.
It took Hotaru a moment to cool her cheeks before realisation set in, "Mum, dad you're both here at the same time!" she cried as she ran to her parents to hug them both at once, only to stumble half way there and clutch her head, "Oh-oh, that was not a smart move." She mumbled as Draconis bolted to her side and pulled her against his chest quickly checking to make sure she was not hurt.
"Are you alright?" he whispered, completely ignoring the monarchs who had also rushed forward
"I've just got a terrible headache, that's all." She smiled as she allowed herself to once again lean against Draconis, "I think its from all the crying today and such."
As soon as the guilty look crossed Draco's face Hotaru reached up and brushed her lips against his. Shaking her head Hotaru smiled and Draco sighed, reaching down and lifting her princess style, "If you wont let me feel guilty you can at least tell me how to reach your quarters so I may look after you… if your parents do not mind that is."
Though King Hades appeared to want to protest this plan, Demona placed a restraining hand on his arm and smiled as Draconis was informed on the location of Hotaru's room and left to take her there alone, "Why did you let him do that?" hissed Hades once they were out of earshot.
"I seem to recall a certain someone taking care of me the day I came down with a stomach bug due to food poisoning at the palace… and I also seem to recall enjoying it." Demona smiled as she stepped closer to her husband, trailing a hand down his arm.
"If I recall correctly my dear, the reason you enjoyed it also became the reason your parents insisted I either left the palace indefinitely or took you as my wife legally, not just physically." Hades quirked an eyebrow at his wife, who to most anyone else was a fearsome woman, but to him was as playful as a kitten.
"Yes well I highly doubt that ultimatum will need to be given in this circumstance dear. Prince Draconis is not nearly as shy as you were at that age." A cheeky grin crossed the Queen's face as she reached up and planted an enticing kiss on his lips.
"You are evil my dear." Hades smiled as he caught his wife's lips in another more urgent kiss.
"I'm not evil… I just miss my husband."
Further in the temple, Draconis lowered Hotaru gently on her bed and pulled the covers back for her. As he turned to go get some water and a cloth for her, he felt himself suddenly pulled down on the bed beside her as Hotaru wrapped her arms around him and snuggled closer, dropping a kiss on his neck, "Stay with me."
A/N: PLEASE READ
Ok I'm DONE… I may perhaps add an epilogue, not sure yet but as far as I can see I'm positive I've tied up all loose ends… and thus an epilogue is not necessary though I'm sure a fair few of you probably want it… However I now need your help. If you have noticed that there are issues that I have not addressed that need to be addressed then please review and tell me… I am now going to go back through and check for anything I may have missed.
Ok no murdering me, I know it has once again been a while but I shall explain what took so long this time. The day I updated this story last, I also wrote the majority of this chapter… now I never finish a chapter unless I've reached roughly 5000 words (or 12ish pages) since short chapters bug me to no end when I'm reading and I wrote about 4000 words that day… then I lost my inspiration… I only just got it back today… call me moody but HSC is a real inspiration killer.
HOWEVER because of this I extended the usual length of my chapters as an apology… for instance this one is 6656 words long not including this A/N.
I hope you've enjoyed Bittersweet Revenge I loved writing it and I think it's my most successful story to date. If you liked this one, you may like my other running story Blue on Black and though the pairing is unusual, I think its actually better written than this one… yes I will be updating it too soon….
Ok now I'm done, if you haven't read the above, please do.
Unless I'm informed otherwise I'm now signing off this story as complete so please check thank you everyone for reviewing, you are the reason I pulled through and finished this story. Good-Bye for now… I think I have my inspiration for over all story writing back so look out for updates and new stories from me :D