I Remember Ami: A Collection
Story Three: Dawn
By: Callisto Callispi
Publish Date: December 17, 2008
It was the merciful blow of the ocean – strong, cold, cleansing – that released the carefully hidden memories. They surfaced like seaweed, finally bathed in the light of consciousness after the long, dark silence that kept them waterlogged.
Those memories clung to her, sticky and stubborn, no matter how hard she tried to rip them away from her body and eyes.
She dashed out into the night, into the cold, into the darkness of forgetting.
Ami, scantily clothed in shorts and thin tank top, stood on the jetty, surrounded by the crash of waves and fierce gusts of wind. Her eyes were closed – all for the better because she could hardly see in the dark night anyway. What she relished was the resounding thunder of millions of gallons of water crashing against the jetty, the demands of a furious god roaring for the rock barrier to fall before its might so that he may initiate his vigorous onslaught on the earth.
Ami did not see, but she could feel. Waves washed into the jetty, and shattered into infinitesimal droplets of water, scattering across the boulders, into the air, onto her face. Goosebumps prickled her bared skin. Ami was cold, freezing, even, and she relished it. Ice was her element, water was her master and servant.
Let it come, and she would master and serve the furious Neptunian force.
She would not falter. Her fists shook. Her icy breath fogged the air in front of her face.
She was the daughter, servant, master of Poseidon. She was a warrior. He – a mere mortal in the vast universe – would not win, could not win, and if she ever kept a heart of ice, it was for his miserable benefit.
Flashes of flaming red and brilliant gold streaked before her mind's eye. She remembered. A blast of light overtook him first, and then a storm of burning rose petals surrounded him in his ashy grave. They were the most beautiful, horrifying things she'd ever seen, those flaming petals.
Despite the roar of the ocean, she could still make out the horrible high-pitched shriek. Ami bit back a small scream that threatened to escape the depths of her heart.
Why now? Why must she start remembering now?
Clever green eyes, glittering emerald, as if he knew some private joke that no one else could ever even fathom. Those pretty eyes, all in ashes now, dried and seared in the inferno of that holy light.
Perhaps his ashes were scattered over this ocean.
Why his image had come back to haunt her nights, Ami did not know.
Ami breathed out and shivered. She realized how cold it actually was. Her mind slowly started to slip back into the state of hard realism, cold rationality. It was her gift, this tendency toward ruthless pragmatism, Ami thought, and right now, it was a curse.
How she desired to remain in that thick, hot cloud of anger and act unlike herself – rash, spontaneously wild, merciless. But then again, she was the type to escape that mist quickly, like a clever fish that escapes the fisherman's baited net.
Ami finally opened her eyes. The blackness of the night sky and the cold moon, veined with outlines of craters, greeted her. Ami wrapped her arms around herself. In her haste to escape her bedroom and her sleep, she had neglected to even put on a shawl. Ami grit her teeth. She was going to get sick, and getting sick was not conducive to anything in her life right now.
No, she had to remain healthy. After all, a sick senshi was a useless senshi in the grand scheme of things, and Ami would not let romantic thoughts waver the amount of concentration she placed on her health.
Usagi, that foolish, dear girl, needed all the protection she could get in this crucial moment.
Ami frowned and turned on her heel. She needed to get back to the beach house before anyone noticed she was missing, no matter how stifling it became for her to remain inside.
As Ami walked back, she glanced over her shoulder at the place on the jetty where she had stood. What had he thought about, standing there, with his brows creased, his tan face flushed with the cold and worry? Evil, he was not. Never was he evil. At least, not in her dreams.
Ami bit her lip and resolutely walked back up to the beach house, her usually soft eyes hard and cold. Evil or not, he did not deserve her time. He did not deserve to see her in a helpless sort of quandary over his metaphysical presence.
Zoisite was dead, and that was just how Ami wanted it to remain – even if he was slowly awakening in her darkest, most secret dreams.
After Ami retired to her room, she slept soundly, her slumber uninterrupted by images of emerald green and shrieks of pain. In that was a simple blessing itself.
Minako passed the door to Ami's room, her slippered feet padding silently down the hallway. It was a few minutes past dawn, and she should have been sleeping. However, like her friend, rest eluded her.
Minako knew what was harrying her friend's mind and heart. Perhaps it was because she, the divine warrior of love and light, was the leader of the senshi; she had felt the utter wrongness of what she had done to Zoisite but ignored it as a passing sentiment of pity for the enemy at the time. But so many dreams of happiness and peace and shattering beams of gold told her more than she wanted to know about the enemy.
Now, she finally understood why the guilt in her heart burdened her so. But Minako didn't know how (or if) she could take it back.
Right now, Minako needed guidance. She had asked Rei to consult the fire a few nights before, prior to leaving for the beach house. Then, the fire had held premonition – she could sense it in her very soul, Rei said – but she could not fathom what exactly it was telling her.
By the time Minako reached the lounge with the window facing the sea, the sky was burning bright red and orange with the arrival of the fiery sun. The clouds in the distance glowed like puffs of light, almost ready to burst in flames of glory. The rivulets of the ocean, reaching into the far distance of the horizon, glittered like pink and gold diamonds.
It was as if someone set fire to roses, and each golden, burning petal danced along the surface of the ocean by the decree of dawn.
The world would wake to the light of truth, Minako apprehended, and they, the senshi, would be there to lead the fight. Death and destruction, peace and salvation – Minako thought she understood now what the fire had been trying to tell them.
Minako walked outside onto the balcony and breathed in. The air smelled like sea salt and roses.
Minako would not sleep today, for she would face her dreams awake. Instead she stood against the railing, entranced, watching the dawning of a new era.