Brotherly Love

A Sailor Moon Fanfiction

By Doughnuts of Miroku

A/N: I'm a slacker. You know it. I know it. A darker chapter. Remember. Italicized means a memory or a journal entry. I want to thank Conejita de la luna for pointing out my deadly mistake. I'm such an idiot. You, my dear reviewers, should slay me.

Part Three : Ice Cream Flavors

November 25, 2002

I can recall this one memory about her. Her of innocence and radiance and bliss. She was joy in the embodiment of a small woman.

She was about 11, composed of milk-washed limbs that should have eluded clumsiness, but instead had an ethereal kind of grace, and yards of the finest golden locks that trailed to her dimpled knees. We were in the peak of our ripening. We were crossing the doorway of young adulthood.

I remember hiding underneath several pounds of blankets and pillows, lost in a dream world as I slept to the early morning. I heard the door flying open, but I refused to acknowledge it. The scent of daisies and freshly-bathed infants clung to my sheets. I could feel a warm body lying on top of my blankets. I opened one curious eye to find an eye as equally curious. It was her. It was her.

"Something horrible and unexplainable as happened. Something that will change the world forever. For you and for me. I'm dying." The funny thing about her statement was that she said it in a tone that lacked fear, that lacked the kind of sorrow that dying people had. It was like someone had told me that today was Christmas, not a moment of death. Of course, when I heard that she was dying, I sat up quickly and stared at her gravely. I felt tears prickling at the edge of my eyelashes. I felt sorrow. I felt helpless. I felt like I failed the world.

"This morning, I woke up and I found a stain of blood on my sheets. I'm bleeding. I'm dying. Someone has shot me. I'm not going to last very long, so this means that you have to kiss me because I don't want to die a virgin, and since you're the only man in the building right now, you must kiss me. Hurry. Quick before death takes me." She flung her hair in a dramatic Shakespearian type of way, falling to her side with hair covering her face and my blankets like soft, fragrant snow.

My silly girl. I chuckled and crawled out of my cage of Egyptian cotton bed sheets. I was walking to her side on all fours, a careful and curious puppy, finding a prize in a lovable kitten. I brushed away a lock of hair that covered her tiny, lush lips. She took a small, subtle breath. She seemed shocked. She doesn't know the effect she has on my 11-year-old body.

I'm going to marry this girl. I am.

Dear God, she's so sweet. I want to cry. Just a clashing of skin, but the friction and the heat and the love is more than I can bear.

I can hear the jazz music of my mother playing on her piano from the other room. The sound is evaporating through the walls. It is a sad sound like a dying love.

"I'm dying," she says. I rub my cheek against her soft hair and reach for her small hand. I rub my thumb against her palm, and I can hear her losing her breath.

Maybe she really was dying, but I kiss her palm delicately and tell her that she was never going to die. My heartbeat was faster than usual. I felt warm like the sun was painting a masterpiece on my face. I could barely breathe.

"I think I'm sick. Maybe I'm dying." She lifts her pretty head and looks at me; her brows crumple up like pretty origami paper. I know she's worried. She's a darling.

"No, you aren't." She merely says and lies back down. We're holding hands on my bed, looking at the glow-in-the-dark stars on my ceiling at 7:00 in the morning.

They weren't glowing, but we were. Two little soulmate stars getting lost in the universe, running away from the rest of the world, running away from the end of our love.

It was 5 o'clock in the early San Francisco morning. I was sitting outside my kitchen window, the fire-escape pseudo-patio I like to call a refuge, watching the buildings sleep like children. I kept the little black book under my afghan blanket, to keep it hidden from the cold, but for some reason, I was the one who was kept warm. I wondered who he was. I wondered what man in this world was capable of loving a single person as much as he loved this woman, the girl who he couldn't allow himself to have because of taboo reasons, because of incest, because of morals. I wondered why all these memories seem so familiar to me that I could almost see the face of this man in my mind.

"Love? What are you doing out there? It's five in the morning."


And I realize then.. that I knew what this man could be feeling. His thoughts of powerlessness, of want, of need, knowing that nothing could be made possible to make him happy, knowing that his happiness wasn't allowed. Mr. Black Book and I should get married. We'd bask in the glow of sadness; sympathy brushing away the tears that wouldn't stop spilling. We'd wake up in the morning with our woes, comforted by the thought of knowing someone can relate.

"Serena. Are you okay?"

I can hear him walking into the fire-escape in his indecent pink robe. He was coming so close. I could feel my skin reacting already. He sat next to me. I can almost imagine his brow furrowing just slightly, his lip a thin line. His arms wrapped around my tiny frame like a cage I never want to escape from.

"My silly girl. You make me worry so much." One kiss on the crown of my head. His kiss feels warm to me. "Do you enjoy it? Is it a game for you? What am I going to do to you so that you'll be kept my Serena forever? Lock you up and throw away the key? Be selfish and drop you in my pocket?" Words that seem so familiar. I swallow the sigh that was building up in my throat and gather my afghan and the book buried in it, walking to the door. I step inside, but only after turning around and kissing him with my eyes.

"Sounds like a plan, my jolly green giant."

After that, I proceeded to get ready for my part-time waitressing job across the street, and for the first time in months and years, I didn't wait for Darien to walk me to work.

"Darien, what does it feel like to be the last dinosaur on Earth?"

He turns his head to me, bewildered at first, but now pensive in a way only he can be. We were lying down on the grass of his fragrant backyard. It was night, a few minutes after dinner. We were both fourteen, so young and so very ripe.

"It must be sad, sad in a way where you thought that you've accomplished everything you could possible want, but in the end, achieve nothing. Sure, you've survived. Sure, you watched your enemies die, but at the same time, you saw your father die and your sister, maybe your wife and your child. You witnessed as everything that meant something a week ago become virtually nothing in the scale of the universe. And in your loneliness, you start to die. You realize you're not dying because something touchable is killing you off, but because the state of being just one single living cell in a dead body kills you."

I step on his stomach as I walk to the backdoor to his house. He stands up and brushes away the pieces of grass that composed of our grass fight a minute ago. Darien chases after me, his hand grabbing my bicep. He leans close to my ear and whispers, "The answer doesn't satisfy you?"

I shiver before throwing him a cocky look and reply, "I just asked the question, hoping it might lead to a Barney joke. Thanks for spoiling the good fun, Plato."

He smirks and stands still for a minute. Even I stopped walking to watch him. "Would you rather have Mr. Funny or Mr. Intelligent as a boyfriend?"

"I would like Mr. Make Me Happy."

He locks arms with me and proceeded on skipping. I turn to look at him, briefly, eyes glazed. He smiles a dimpled smile.

"I would like Mr. Make Me Happy, too, hun. Me too." Realization hit me once again, and I grabbed a handful of grass and smeared it all over his face.

"You are such a gay fucker!" Before he could catch me, I noticed an equally dirty hand of grass and bolted as fast as I could to his yard. He grabbed my pigtail and sent the dirt-and-grass ball down my shirt.

"Why, thank you. To repay your kind, kind words, here's something to make sure people won't mistaken you for a boy."

That last afternoon, we spent it chasing each other with grass, neither minding the police threats from the neighbor nor the fact that we looked like hippies. Maybe Darien minded that he looked like a hippie.

He once said hippies were atrocious sex people with four kinds of herpes.

I told him he was exaggerating.

They had at most two kinds.

"Can I have a cup of coffee? Hello? Coffee?"

Another reverie at Luke's Diner. I was just standing there, holding a coffee pot, expecting people to not ask for coffee by some chance of a miracle. I pour this man his coffee, ignoring the hospitality of smiling at the customer, like a robot waitress. He notices this, and I know because he speaks up.

"Hi. Something's wrong?" Odd question to ask a stranger. So I finally do him a favor, and I look at his face. He is a narrow, almost feminine bone structure, something we both share ironically. Dark hair, the so-black-that-it's-blue kind of dark. Sharp blue eyes. Warm, inviting lips. He looked like hell with wings. Updated, but vintage attire. He was no business man. He was no homeless. This man was caught between both on a league on his own.

"Sit with me."

I knew he could serve as trouble in the future, but instead, I sit down in the booth seat across from him. I pour him more coffee.

I don't think he wanted anymore.

"This is not a date, nor is a sign that I am interested in you romantically or sexually or otherwise." He arches an eyebrow like the Casanova of a french film. He opens his mouth to say something, and for some reason, I didn't think he said anything, until he repeated it twice.

"You like to daydream, don't you?" I smile. A "I do what I can" flutters on the roof of my mouth. I decide against it.

"What's your name?" I shake my head in a coy sort of way, not wanting to play the game his way. "I don't have a name when it comes to strangers. Not unless you want to pay for it."

I sound like a prostitute, or a lady caller. I don't care. It was fun playing games with him. It was fun knowing I can win for once.

"Let's say that you stay for the entire day until it closes, ordering a cup of coffee every hour so you won't get kicked out. If you can do that, then maybe I'll leave you my name before my shift is over. Just my name."

The day passes. I served a dozens of faceless strangers, the robot waitress I am, but I watched him through my peripheral vision. I saw him through closed eyes when he thought I was taking a brief nap. The scenery outside changed like theatre backdrop, but he did not budge. He sat there, glued to his seat by some unmistakable invisible force. The sky would fall, but he sit as diligently as he does, neglecting work or play or other women for a single two-syllable name.

Everyone leaves. I take his numerous dirty coffee cups, all of them empty. I come back in my jacket, ready to just sprint and leave him. But I don't.

I sit down across from him and take his hand. He looks at me surprised, weary, restless, human. I place a restaurant napkin on his palm.

"I lied. I didn't hold up to my promise. I gave you my phone number." He stares at the napkin, and then lifts his head to stare at me. For some reason unknown to me, I don't feel uncomfortable with his eyes resting on me. I smile again.

"Serena. Your name is worth 8 cups of coffee."

I stand up and walk to the door, turning over my shoulder to speak to him. "Something you need to learn about me. I'm worth more than 8 cups of coffee. That's why you're going to buy me ice cream."

He followed, deserting his beloved booth spot for a thing sweeter than ice cream.

The unspoken beginning of a friendship.

We were in the pitch-dark night. The window curtains were drawn closed. It was winter.

I couldn't see the hand in front of my face, the one itching to accidentally touch his cheek. Darien was awake with me.

"I am jealous."

"Why?" I wanted to hear his reason. I leaned against my hands, propped up by my elbows. I was staring at the dark space where he was.

"Because.. I don't have a reason why. Jealousy is a feeling, and it's something you feel, not think." I paused, took a breath. I needed to reason this out.

"Then.. why do you feel that way?"

"Because you aren't ugly. And they know that."

"Who knows that?"

"People who keep butterflies for their collection." Even more Darien metaphors and philosophies. What would butterflies have to do with me?

"Are you one of those people?"

I can hear him playing with his sheets. I can see the shades of darkness moving unrestlessly in front of my eyes.

With the voice smaller than his age, there was a mumbled "I'm not sure" and silence.

He feigned his sleep. I knew. I didn't get much sleep that night either.

"Prune ice cream with mango bits. I'd say that's the homosexual flavor of the ice cream world."

Ice cream during a cold night. We were walking up and down sidewalks. He walked, so diligently, like a soldier, nodding once and a while, to give me assurance he was still alive. When I talked, he was completely still, the perfect quintessential conversation listener. He was a rather secretive person himself, but at the same time, so loud, and every bit, the normal heterosexual man. I could get used to this, I thought to myself. I gave him the first real look of the night, and he returned an equally intensified look.

"You're a lonely one, aren't you?" He spoke first, and instead of lying like always, I nodded. "But it's a different kind of lonely-girl-syndrome. Throughout the entire night, you were preoccupied with the thought of someone or something else, and no matter how many jokes and general information I fed you, I wasn't that man. I am simply a stranger, and you won't allow yourself to let me be anything else." I winced. His words hit home none too gently.

We were in front of my apartment. I was leaning against a mailbox, puffing small clouds that disappeared into the cold bleak air. He watched me; his hand holding a dripping cone of half-melted Chocolate Decadence. Two strides of his long legs landed him intimately brushing against the front of my coat. He was so very close, the closest any man besides Darien has ever gotten in my life. His voice vibrated through his layers of clothing.

"Use me, please. I sound like a man-whore. I know that you love this idiotic excuse of a man, but maybe, I can convince you to give me a chance. Dispose me when you want, but give me a chance to make you forget."

"I don't even know your name." It was true. His name is still lost in translation somewhere in his mind. I took a cautious step and looked up at his profile. He was a handsome man. He spoke, and the brief scent of chocolate wafted. "You can call me whatever you want." I smiled knowingly. He really was my man-whore.

"I want your name to be the one that your mother gave to you." I took a plunge, pushing away the memory of Darien's grinning face to the back of my mind. I placed cold lips to cold lips, and chocolate and strawberry clashed to make the saccharine-sweet clandestine rendezvous. He tasted of chocolate, of normality, of promise, of security, but mostly, of something attainable.

"Seiya. My mother gave me 'Seiya.'" I opened the door to my apartment, and before releasing my breath, I gave him my goodbye. I leaned against my door and shut my eyes tightly. The tart taste of prune ice cream with mango bits in my mouth lingered like a Saturday morning, but now, it had an aftertaste of sweet chocolate.

The combination hated each other and left me with the desire to brush my teeth.

The fine silhouette of a man gazed out the window, surrounded by the eerie darkness of the apartment. He cradled a bleeding fist and allowed copious tears to land on his wounds. A dent with maroon stains on the wall kept his company as he continued to cry.

"They've finally noticed you're not ugly, and I'm at a loss of what to do."

He remained in the dark, even as the door struggled to open, and hoped to God that she doesn't find him. There is no way in the world he could explain why tears and blood liter their apartment. There is no way in the world he can face her with his broken self.

The man sashayed to his room and closed it tight. He can hear her voice calling for him, but he pretends to sleep. He says one more thing before the sandman takes him away.

"Happy birthday to me."

A/N: I hope you guys don't have to wait another year for another installment. That would be mean of me.