Disclaimers: I don't own Tenchi Muyo.
Chapter One: The Beginning
It was a beautiful morning at the Masaki's residence. Upon entering the house, your nose would be hit with so many aromas of food; your taste buds would feel like they're in heaven.
"Breakfast!" A sweet child-like voice could be heard echoing throughout the house. That one word brought everyone in the household together. Everyone was seated at the small dining table, which was being loaded down with food. "I hope you like the breakfast," a child of 10 looking age, with long wavy blue hair held up in pigtails, and shining pink eyes, stood before the table holding the rice pot.
"I'm sure we'll love it Sasami," a short lady with long pink hair said to the girl.
"Thank you Washu!" Sasami exclaimed to the woman.
"You don't need the compliment," Ryoko, a tall slim lady with long spiky looking light blue hair said. She was dressed in a long black dress.
"Yes Sasami! You're food is always so tasty,' Mihoshi of the Galaxy Police, with short wavy blonde hair in a ponytail, wearing a pink striped shirt and tan pants said.
"See Sasami, I told you everyone would love your food," a tall slim lady with long purple hair, and pink eyes, wearing a pink kimono commented. Her name was Ayeka, and she was Sasami's big sister. "Miss Ryoko, would you please go and get Tenchi?" Ayeka asked.
"Oh ho! So you're going to give Tenchi to me eh?" Ryoko cooed.
"Don't be silly! I'm just busy helping Sasami," Akane said, though if you looked closely you could see a hidden message.
"If you say so Princess," Ryoko shrugged, teleporting out of the room. As soon as Ayeka saw Ryoko was out, she pushed past Sasami and rushed out of the room.
Ryoko re-teleported in a well sized, well-lit room. She hovered above the ground for a second, and then flew over to the queen sized bed. Laying there sleeping like a baby was a tall male figure with black hair in a boyish cut.
"Morning Tenchi,' she whispered into his ear. "Time to wake up darling!"
"5 more minutes," Tenchi smiled.
"But it's breakfast time," Ryoko whined. After a few minutes she got a mischievous smile on her face. "Will you wake up if I do this?" She asked, and then she leaned over and gave Tenchi's lips a soft kiss.
"Mmmm," Tenchi moaned. He slowly opened his eyes and stared up into Rook's smiling face. His lips turned upward into a smile. "I could definitely wake up like that every morning," he said.
"I'd be glad to do that every morning sweetie," she cooed. Then she kissed him again, but more passionately, and Tenchi kissed back this time. "I love you Tenchi."
"I love you too Ryoko," Tenchi whispered, before pulling Ryoko down on top of himself where they resumed kissing. The two were so involved in each other that they never heard the door creak open, or heard the surprised gasp coming from a certain princess on the other side of the door. Ayeka covered her mouth, then quickly turned and made her way down the hall to her room. She silently entered the room which she shared with Sasami. When she knew that she was in the privacy of the room, she lost all self control, and collapsed to the floor. She leaned her back against the wall, and placed a hand over her rapidly beating heart. Then the tears began to flow. Slowly at first, then with gaining speed. Hitting the floor like raindrops.
'Why? Why must I always feel pain?' Ayeka questioned herself. 'I wouldn't have minded so much if they told me. I mean, I know you can't control your heart. You can't tell your heart who to love.' She thought. 'What will I do? I can't stay here. They obviously think I'm an obstacle for their love. That has to be the reason why they didn't tell me. Besides… it would be best for my own heart if I left.' She paused for a moment. 'That's it! It's decided! I shall leave! But where? Should I go home to Jurai? I should… but I like it on Earth… besides, it'll take days for the ship arrive. By then someone would have to have figured out my plans and try to talk me out of it. What to do? What to do?' Ayeka pondered. Then an idea hit her. 'I've go it! I'll pack and leave tonight, and get a fair amount away from the shrine and myself. Then I'll contact mother to come get me. Brilliant! I should start packing now.' Ayeka decided. She wiped away a few stray tears, and then lifted herself off the floor. "I really shouldn't pack a lot, or Sasami will notice. I'll just take the important things," Ayeka said to the air. She pulled a duffel bag out of the closet and began to pack the essentials.
Tenchi and Ryoko after quite a while, made their way down the stairs to breakfast.
"Finally! Do you know how long we had to wait for you?!" Washu asked.
"Do we care Washu?" Ryoko shot back.
"You should! I'm hungry!"
"So,' Ryoko said, sitting a t the table with Tenchi sitting beside her.
"Where's princess Ayeka?" Tenchi asked, wanting to stop the on coming fight.
"I don't kn…' Washu began, but was cut off.
"She went out on a walk. She ate in the kitchen before she left!" Sasami explained in a rush. She wanted to cover for Ayeka, for she knew what Ayeka was planning when she sent Ryoko to wake him. 'So, she found out the truth.' Sasami thought sadly.
"Oh," was all Tenchi said. Thus, that was the morning of the fateful day, and like all days, morning becomes noon, and noon becomes night. Before anyone knew it, dinner had arrived.
"Looks delicious!" Ryoko exclaimed, eyeing the food.
"Thank you!" Sasami was pleased. She began placing various foods into a plate, and then she sat the plate on a tray next to a bowl of rice and in front of a cup of tea.
"Who's the fray for?" Washu inquired.
"Oh! This is for Ayeka. She's feeling sick and wants to stay in the room," Sasami explained.
"I'll take it to her," Tenchi offered.
"No!" Sasami said, to stop everyone's staring of her.
"That's fine. I want to," Tenchi insisted.
"But…but…" Sasami was at a loss for words, but before she could find what she wanted to say, Tenchi had already grabbed the tray, and was making his way up the stairs. Tenchi gently rapped on the door to Ayeka's bedroom.
"Come in!" A voice called from the other side.
"I brought your dinner Miss Ayeka!" Tenchi called out as he entered the room.
"Thank you." He barely heard the muttered response. Upon looking around, he saw an ordinary bedroom with Ayeka sitting in front of the window, looking out of it at the stars.
"Are you feeling well Miss Ayeka?" Tenchi asked, taking a seat next to her.
"Why yes Lord Tenchi. Quite well! Just thinking," she replied.
"My mother…" Was Ayeka's simple answer.
"Do you miss her?"
"Very much. She taught me a lot. Like a great saying."
"What was it?" Tenchi asked.
"Always follow your heart," Ayeka said.
"What was it?" Tenchi asked again, not quite believing her ears.
"You should always follow your heart, and never be scared of what might happen, for you'll regret it later," she whispered, water welling up in her eyes.
"I heard that before," Tenchi said.
"Have you?" Ayeka raised an eyebrow, wiping away the would be tears.
"Yeah, I didn't remember until now. But my mom kept telling me that before she died.'
"Oh, I'm sorry," Ayeka lowered her eyes to the floor.
"It's okay. I liked that saying. Always follow your heart, and don't be scared," Tenchi said out to the air.
"Yes, it is a great saying. Reminds me of love," Akane said in a faraway tone. Silence settled in the room. Finally someone spoke up.
"Ayeka, I have something to tell you," Tenchi began.
"Yes Lord Tenchi," Ayeka said.
"Well… it's about…" but before Tenchi could finish, he was interrupted.
"Tenchi! Dinner is getting cold!" Sasami called up the stairs.
"Coming!" He called back. "Could I tell you tomorrow?" He asked as he rose.
"Perhaps," Ayeka said. Though she was thinking along the lines of 'Perhaps never again will you talk to me.'
"Okay then, until tomorrow," Tenchi stated as he reached the door.
"Sure," Ayeka mumbled, rolling her eyes. 'Sure that you won't talk to me.' Ayeka breathed a sigh of relief when she heard the click that announced that the door was closed and Tenchi was gone. "Finally! I thought he would never leave," she said out to the empty room. Ayeka looked towards the camera on her vanity. "Time to ask for the picture." She went over and picked up the camera, then quietly left the room. She slowly walked down the stairs, and then stood at the base.
"Come on Tenchi, open your mouth," she heard Ryoko say.
"I can feed myself," was Tenchi's response. Akane smiled at the same old disagreement that happened everyday.
'Too bad it was all just an act.' Ayeka thought sadly, and sighed.
"Ayeka, is that you?" Sasami's voice was heard.
"Yes it is, Sasami," Ayeka said, stepping into the room.
"I thought you weren't feeling well," Sasami said with a concerned face.
"Well I wasn't. But while up there I was making a scrapbook and saw that there was no recent pictures of us together… as a family," Ayeka said.
"So what do you want Princess?" Ryoko asked.
"I was wondering if we could take a picture," Ayeka replied.
"What a great idea!" Sasami cheered. "And look everyone is here!"
"Yes, that is a terrific thought. Here, give me the camera to set it up," Washu said, getting out of her seat. She took the camera from Ayeka's grasp and began to get it ready to capture the moment.
"Come on everyone! It's picture time!" Sasami chanted. She started skipping around.
"Okay Sasami!" Ayeka smiled at her enthusiasm. "Come here and sit on this chair," Ayeka said, patting the cushion of the chair in front of her.
"Okay!" Sasami rushed over then plopped onto the chair. "Come here Ryo-oh-ki!" Sasami called out to he cabbit. Suddenly a fuzz of brown fur which appeared to be a mixture of cat and rabbit, rushed out of nowhere and hopped onto Sasami's waiting lap. Ayeka then positioned herself behind Sasami. Soon the others joined in. Tenchi stood next to Ayeka with Ryoko, who had her arms around his neck, next to him, and next to Ryoko stood Kiyone. In the front, next to Sasami was a chair for Washu; with Yosho next to her, then it was Nobuyuki with Mihoshi sitting next to him.
"Okay everyone! Get ready!" Washu shouted as she ran back to the others. "Say cheese!"
"Cheese!" Everyone chorused. With that the flash went off and the picture was taken. Washu rushed back to the camera, and hooked some wires to it, connecting it to a weird machine. After pushing a couple of buttons, a four by four picture was produced.
"Here you go Ayeka," Washu said, handing the photo to Ayeka. Ayeka took one look at it and laughed.
"What is it Ayeka?" Sasami asked, taking hold of the picture. She too laughed at the sight. Soon everyone gathered around it to get a look, and so everyone started laughing. In the photo there was a lot of movement. You could see Ryo-oh-ki in mid-air, amused with something, thus the action caused Sasami to react, whose arms were frozen in the air, in a movement which suggested that she was going to catch a ball. Yosho and Nobuyuki weren't even looking at the camera; they were facing each other talking. Mihoshi was captured in the middle of a sneeze. Kiyone had a surprised look on her face which was most likely caused by the sudden sneeze. Ryoko was staring at Kiyone and Mihoshi in a mock annoyance way. The only ones looking at the camera was Ayeka and Tenchi, whose arm somehow found its way around Ayeka's shoulder. Both smiling brightly.
"Should we retake it?" Washu asked.
"No," Ayeka said, taking possession of the picture again. "I wanted a picture of our family, and this is our family, always in movement."
"True," everyone chorused in agreement.
"Well, I think I'm going to turn in now," Ayeka declared. "Thank you for the picture and good night," Ayeka said, leaving for her room.
"I'll be up soon Ayeka," Sasami said.
"Okay,' Ayeka said, climbing the stairs. She entered her room and placed the picture into a book, then placed the book in a pocket in her duffel bag. Then she climbed into her futon.
"HI Ayeka," Sasami said, entering and sitting on the futon next to her sister's. "I'm really sorry about Tenchi."
"I wish that there was…" Sasami began but was cut off.
"Don't Sasami. It's the past. Anyways, instead of us being sad, let's act like we did before we met Tenchi. Remember how much fun we had?"
"Yeah! You would always want to do something to help keep my mid off of mommy."
"Are you happy here Sasami?"
"Of course! Like you said downstairs. This is one big family."
"I'm glad to hear you're happy," Ayeka smiled.
"Why? I'm always happy when I'm with you."
"Thanks…" Ayeka stared at the stars out through the window, then at Sasami. "It's getting late, you should get to sleep."
"Do I have to?" Sasami whined.
"Yes little one. I'll even sing you a lullaby."
"Yeah!" Sasami cheered. "You haven't sung me one since we crashed on Earth!" Sasami quickly scurried around, throwing her pj's on, and then jumped under the covers.
"Silly," Ayeka muttered. She went and kneeled next to Sasami, and closed her eyes. She opened her mouth and began to sing an old Jurian lullaby. Unknown to Ayeka, she had an audience. On the other side of the door were Tenchi and Washu.
"I think she'll be fine," Washu whispered, "though I head no idea that she had a great singing voice."
"Yeah," Tenchi said dreamily, with a dazed expression. Soon the singing had ceased.
"Time to go," Washu said, walking down the hall, with Tenchi following. Though Tenchi still had this nagging feeling that something that would change their lives forever would take place tonight, and for some strange reason, all his worry revolved around Ayeka. But he decided to just push it to the back of his mind and talk to Ayeka about it tomorrow.
While in the bedroom Ayeka was smiling down at a sleeping Sasami, then she crawled back into her futon. Soon at midnight, she crawled back out and took a glance at Sasami to make sure she was still asleep.
'Am I doing the right thing?' She asked herself. 'Doesn't matter. I have to leave. Sasami is happy here, and if I take her away from a family again she might not forgive me. I know she'll be happy here, even if I'm not with her. I have to do this.' She thought with a strong resolve. Ayeka quietly crept to the door and looked out. It was pitch black and quiet. 'Perfect!' She went back to where Sasami laid and kneeled next to her. "Good bye Sasami, I love you," she whispered. The she bent over and placed a gentle kiss on Sasami's forehead, then she placed a not she wrote to the family telling them not to worry about her on her pillow. She then got up and picked her duffel bag off the ground. She silently left the room, closing the door behind her. She made her way down the stairs and out the door of the Masaki residence. Where most of her happiest moments involved this house and its inhabitants. Outside she stared at the house, as if engraving its every detail into her mind.
"Good bye everyone. I hope you all live a happy life," she said into the wind, which carried her words to the trees and animals, yet not to the people that mattered. With one last look, Ayeka adjusted the grip on the duffel bag and turned to make her departure. With tears flowing freely down her soft face, Ayeka took her leave and walked into the darkness.
The next morning, in the early dawn, the Masaki household was awoken by the high pitched shrill of a distressed little girl. Who had awoken that morning to find her sister's bed empty, with a note on it telling her that she didn't know if she was returning anytime soon, or ever for the matter. She thought it was the end of the world, along with everyone else in the house. But they didn't realize that it was just the beginning.
A/N: That's the end of chapter one and I hope that you liked it. More is to come soon. That's right, I'm going to keep the story going even if you don't like it, but I hope you do. I would really appreciate and work harder to get chapter two out, if I got at least five reviews. Five is fine but more is great. Well, until next time. Sayonara!