Rain poured profoundly down from the black haze in the sky, spattering heavily upon the pavement below. Dark clouds prevented the sun's light, creating walls of darkness all around the skies of Tokyo. The skies would brighten every now from claps of thunder, but none met the ground. Winds picked up heavily, debris upon the streets of the large city lifting from the ground, papers of all kinds twirling around, dancing along with the wind's silent music. Traffic was light, most simply staying in doors until the storm lifted. A girl sat upon the steps of a private school, gray colored skirt, matching the attire required of the school. The students all but left, most of the teachers already driven away to escape the rain. The girl heard a click from behind her, signaling the school's closure, and the doors locking.
The girl continued to sit amongst the steps, eyes locked upon the corner of the street in which she expected a car to show. Her hair was soaked, her uniform drenched, as she pulled her knees to her chest, her book bag hanging loosely around her left wrist. Her hair and clothes stuck to her body due to the moisture, but she never moved from her spot to fix her clothing, or to change from the uncomfortable position, keeping those dark purple hues upon that corner, as if expecting any moment for the limo to pull around the corner, and her father waving to her, playing off another excuse to why he was late.
It came to a shock to her that her father would actually want to plan something, other than a 'let's catch up on old times' dinner, but to plan an entire weekend off to some place she hadn't even heard of seemed something she couldn't believe. However, the lack of a father in her life forced her to believe, forced her to tell all her friends of the trip, as well as pack a week in advance for the trip. The plan was that her father himself would be picking her up from school, drop by the shrine to pick up a few things, then head straight for the airport and board the plane.
So here she was, Rei Hino, awaiting her father in the rain, thirty minutes late, and two hours before their flight would leave. Waiting, as she always did. Always waiting at the restaurants her father would pick out, waiting at the shrine for her father to pick her up. Her fingers clasped tightly together, her teeth clenched, feeling her eyes fill with moisture. Swallowing the lump that had formed in her throat, she pushed the negative thoughts aside, trying to keep herself positive with thoughts of him getting a flat tire, or just simply being held up in a press conference, or board meeting.
All thoughts were whisked away, when the familiar shouts of laughter filled her ears, her eyes darting to the opposite side of the school. Her head quickly went down, her hair shadowing over her eyes, a feeling of stupidity and embarrassment filling her suddenly. The laughter and chatter of two teenage girls stopped, as Rei felt the two presences just before the school. Footsteps through the rain made their way toward the girl, as she kept her stare upon the steps she sat upon, not wanting to look up at the concerned eyes of those who stood before her.
"Rei?" she heard one voice ask, seeming out of breath, seeing the long blonde hair of one leaning over to try to make eye contact with her. Rei wiped her face with her wrist, before looking up, her eyes slightly red, and her nose was slightly runny, causing her to sniffle a bit.
"Oh, hey Minako," she said, trying to keep her voice as enthusiastic as she could. The girl smiled brightly enough for Rei to find it in herself to reply with a smile of her own. "What are you two doing here?" Rei kicked herself mentally, knowing the fact that her school just so happens to be in the middle of her friends' route to and from school.
"Well, Usagi got a ride from Mamoru, and Ami got a ride from her mom, so me and Mina decided to run home in the rain," the tall brunette beside the blonde replied, smirking to the panting blonde beside her. Rei bit her lip as she lowered her view, knowing good and well what the next question would be, and no matter of wishing would stop it from coming.
"What are you still doing here, Rei? Aren't you supposed to be at the airport in an hour?" Minako asked, after she seemed to catch her breath. Rei's fists clenched tighter, hoping it would go unnoticed.
"My dad's running a little late," she lied. "He told me to wait here for him." Minako tilted her head to the side, her smile holding with a nod. Makato's brows lowered a bit, as if sensing the girl's thoughts. Rei swallowed another lump in her throat, but she wasn't questioned any further.
"Well, hope you have a good time Rei," the blonde said, waving her hand as she sped off, leaving Makato in the dust. The tall senshi of thunder stood a moment, placing a hand upon the priestess' shoulder.
"I'll be home all day, Rei," she said, holding more meaning behind her words. Rei nodded her head, still not meeting the brunette's dark green eyes. With that being said, Makato quickly caught up to Minako, and they were both in a dash for Makato's apartment. Rei's face fell to her knees once they were out of sight, still having no tears to drop. She breathed in the air fully, holding it in until her head went light, then let it out, closing her eyes.
"He'll be here," she said aloud, her head lifting, while her hands wiped the water from her face in a useless effort. "He'll be here."
After another thirty minutes, Rei's raven locks parted ways, as her eyes met a black limo turning a corner, and stopping in front of her school. A man stepped out from the driver's seat, extending his hand and motioning to Rei to come over, while he moved his way to the passenger's side back seat, opening the door for the girl. Rei hesitated at first, before she picked up her back, hurrying to the car. She paused a moment, looking to the man, who was obviously looking the girl's soaked attire over. After a shake of his head, Rei entered the limo, finally realizing exactly how cold she was. Her body shook all over, her teeth chattering, her jaw clenched trying to prevent it at the same time. Her hands instantly hugged around her, as she took a seat on the padded seating, looking around, but finding no one in the limo. She heard the front door open and close, the driver quickly pulling off.
"Mr. Hino got held up in at a press conference, he said he'll meet you at the airport," the man said through the silence, once they stopped at a light. "You have to stop by the Hiwaka Shrine, ne?" Rei nodded in the mirror, and the man went on. "I haven't been there in ages, just a few blocks down on the right, correct?" Rei nodded again in silence, in which the driver suddenly took the hint. Rei leaned herself against the side of the car, her hands moving up and down her arms, her skin cold and filled with goose bumps. She suddenly felt heat blasting through a vent, her eyes meeting the gaze of the man in the front.
"Thank you," she replied quietly, almost a whisper. The man nodded in response, obviously having read the girl's lips, the rest of the ride in complete silence.
It took Rei less than five minutes to run into the shrine, dry off, change clothes, grab her things, and jump back into the limo, this time of course remembering to bring an umbrella as she ran through the pouring rain. Again, the car ride was left in complete silence, Rei's eyes locked to the window as they flew by traffic. They reached the airport, the driver quickly gathering Rei's things for her before Rei could even get out of the car. She thanked the man one last time, before she pulled her wheeled luggage with her into the airport.
Crowds of people swarmed the airport, all awaiting for different reasons, whether be for their own flights, flights of friends, flights of family, or just waiting for their luggage to return to them. Security was tight, as it always was; safety a big issue for airports, one reason why Rei's father suggested to leave right after school. Rei quickly pushed the though from her mind, as she pushed her way through the crowd, desperately in search of her father. The crowd was so jumbled together, it was nearly impossible for her to tell one from another. She sighed in frustration, as she pulled her suitcase through the crowd, a few mild curses thrown her way as she simply shrugged them off.
After ten minutes of waiting in line, and going through security, she dropped off her luggage, now only holding a small arm-bag, wrapped around her shoulder, she quickly ran through the slightly slimmer crowd of people, making her way toward her gate, ticket in hand. As she reached her gate, she froze in her steps, her eyes staring at a certain aged man flirting with a stewardess, black-suited guards standing near by, but far enough away as to not suffocate the man. As the she neared, the man seemed to take notice, making a parting phrase that sent shivers down the fire senshi's spine.
"Rei!" the man spoke, a political smile plastered upon his face, one of which the black haired girl's fiery gaze burned right through. The man hesitated under the glare, but Rei shook her head, replacing it with a forced smile, her hair still slightly damp from the rain, a black umbrella in one hand, her bag over the other arm's shoulder. They stood there in awkward silence for a moment, neither really moving forward, before the stewardess came forth, announcing everyone to board the plane.
"Oh, so this is your daughter Senator?" the girl said, eyeing the priestess. Rei's eyes fell to the floor, feeling more uncomfortable by the minute, wishing she had just said no to her dad's offer.
"Why yes, yes it is," he said, as he placed a hand upon the girl's shoulder, standing by her side, as if showing off a trophy. Rei felt herself shrink more, but forced her self to smile. Even if it was forced and uncomfortable, it was nice to have the attention. After more words were spoken, the two headed onto the plane, taking their seats in the front, Rei's father offering his daughter the window seat, which she took invitingly. The two sat in silence before the plane took off, neither one really knowing what to say.
'If he's not going to talk to me, why would he want to be with me a whole weekend?' Rei's thoughts had been in her mind the moment they met up, the question continuing to run through her mind as the silence continued. As if the man read her mind, Rei's father turned to her, his hands resting upon the arm rest.
"Rei," he started, making sure he had her full attention. "I called your grandfather earlier this week about your future. Should anything happen to me, I wanted to make sure you were taken care of." Rei blinked suddenly, not liking the tone in her father's voice. "One of my security guards was shot the other day during a press conference," he said as he turned away slightly. "I guess you're not the only one that hates me," he said with a forced chuckle.
"I don't hate you," Rei quickly added, biting her lip as she turned her eyes away. Her father blinked, as he returned his gaze to his daughter. He smiled lightly, and continued on. He went on about life insurance, and how his lawyers met up with her grandfather and himself, both of them placing life insurance upon themselves for a just incase scenario. Rei took a moment to register all the shocking information, but after he was done, she could only nod. It would explain why he was suddenly taking the weekend off to be with her, having nearly been shot while waving to a crowd of reporters, but it still felt odd to her. After everyone was seated, the small private plane took off.
Filled with attorneys, and a few bodyguards, Rei forced herself to relax against the cushioned seat, her gaze outside the window to the terrible weather that tore through the huge capital. Laughter could be heard in front of her, older men in suits tipping their alcohol-filled glasses to one another, apparently having won a case for Rei's father, and celebrating it upon their plane ride. Other suited-men, ones filled with a black attire sat one seat in front of her, conversing over things Rei chose not to listen to. Rei's father spoke to a lawyer next to him about the same case it seemed, though Rei forced her attention to the bad weather outside, still wishing she hadn't come. Though, the conversation her father had just shared with her plagued her mind, her thoughts completely changing, and forcing her to attempt to bond with her father. This surely was going to be one hell of a weekend.
Two days later, Rei sighed heavily, waiting upon a chair in the airport, her father no where in sight. The weekend hadn't been a disaster as Rei had predicted, but it did involve Rei's father constantly being pulled left and right, and Rei being left in a hotel room alone, mostly spending her time flipping through channels, ordering room service, or spending the money her father had given her. Though they were only materials offered to her to forget the fact that her father wasn't there, the dinners they had spent were better than the ones they spent once a year together.
Her father told her he'd meet her at the airport once again, this time Rei making it in time to relax and wait before the flight, instead of rushed at the last minute, and completely soaked in rain water. Twenty minutes later, and the abrupt laughter of older men caught her ears, as she looked over her shoulder to find her father conversing with the people who were also apart of this 'get away' trip for just herself and her father. Her eyes merely shifted up for a second, before they fell upon the book once again, wondering what reasoning she had for actually going through with this.
It took a mere ten minutes for the Senator's crew to fill their seats, jokes of their trip filling the miko's ears, unable to wait for the moment for the plane to take off. Most of the plane ride was filled with unnecessary comments, crude humor, and a high taste of alcohol, the scent of scotch filling her nostrils quickly, focusing her thoughts upon something else for the remainder of the trip. Rei let herself lean back against the chair, her eyes upon the book she had bought in her travels. Her seat was currently leaned back, but was forced to bring it forward when the light above her lit up.
"Attention passengers, this is your captain speaking. We're going to be hitting some turbulence in a few minutes, please return to your seats, and make sure your seats and tray tables are in their up right and locked position. It will only last for a short while, thank you."
As the voice ended its sentence, it left an eerie feeling in the pit of the priestess' stomach, and a chill down her spine. Her mind told her to ignore it, but not matter how much she tried to ignore it, the thought remained in the back of her mind, like an annoying fly that you just cant swat away. Her brows lowered, as irritation settled in. Eyes unable to focus upon the book before her, she shut it with a light thud, and an appropriate mumble of mixed words.
A blonde-haired woman's face appeared over the seat in front of her, hearing the thud of the book shutting. It was the face of one of her father's attorney's, apparently one of the best in Tokyo, or so she had heard. The woman conversed with her during one of the dinners she went to with her dad and the rest of the crew on the plane. The woman's bright blue eyes reminded her of Usagi and Minako for a moment, but the over confident smirk she always wore tossed that vision right out the window.
"I'm glad you decided to buy that book, Ms. Hino," the woman replied. Rei let a half grin escape her lips, as she placed the book to her side, tucking it underneath her arm. "Don't worry, the chances of a plane going down from mere turbulence is about one in a million." With that said, the woman turned to her father to talk, before a stewardess tapped her on the shoulder, scolding her to return herself to the proper seating position. Reluctantly, the girl gave a deathly glare, before she turned like a child, her face disappearing from Rei's vision. The child-like attitude would once again remind her of her two blonde friends back home, the same ones she would be meeting at the airport in less than thirty minutes.
Rei's eyes traveled to the window, the thick fog and slight soundless flashes tensing her more. As she tried to pull her vision away, at the last second her eyes caught something. At first, it just seemed like a black shadow upon the wing, but when she looked closer, it appeared to take a form of a bird. Black rigged feathers, and a pointy black beak, the creature let out a silent cry, its own red beady eyes staring directly back at the girl. Rei hesitated, as she stared at the creature. It was almost as if the raven-like bird wasn't looking at her, but into her very soul, judging her. It sent chills down her spin the moment the creature cried out again, its wings spreading outward, as if it were just about to fly straight into the window.
Rei looked away, her arms shaking that of her father's, who was currently laughing it up with his fellow partners and co-workers, the smell of alcohol much heavier than the first plane ride there. As her father returned his vision to his daughter with a questioning gaze, she merely pointed to the window, resulting in a shrug of his shoulders, as he turned and continued the conversation as if he hadn't just been interrupted. Rei then looked back to the window, seeing absolutely nothing upon the wing. Thoughts ran through her mind faster than the plane they were riding in.
'How could a bird be standing on a wing? We're going so fast, it wouldn't be able to just stand there,' Rei told her self, convincing herself that she was just on edge since the beginning of their vacation. Crossing her arms over her chest, she swallowed the lump in her throat that had formed suddenly, lowering herself in her seat as the plane started to go through the turbulence the pilot had warned them about.
The floor beneath her started to shake lightly, though went unnoticed to the passengers all around her. Her eyes moved to the stewardess who was currently running up to another one, whispering something to her ear. No matter how much her ears strained, she couldn't quite hear the conversation over the loud laughter of the passengers to her right. The two women quickly finished serving drinks, before they made their way to their own seats, Rei's eyes capturing the two buckling in, gripping the seats arm rests tightly, before the light blue colored curtain closed.
The small plane shook once again, more forceful than the last, a few spilled drinks upon the carpeted floor below, gathering the attention of the lawyers and politicians, the darkness from around the plane thickening, leaving the only lighting from within the plane itself. Loud cackles turned to quiet laughter, then to hesitant chuckles, as the plane shook violently, Rei's hands gripping the armrest next to her so tightly her knuckles turned white. Her eyes widened, filled with fear, her jaw clenching tensely, looking over to her father, who was trying to hold back the fear in his own eyes, looking to his daughter to try to tell her there was nothing to worry about. His mouth open to speak, but the words wouldn't come out, as he was nearly thrown off balance, the plane nearly shifting entirely to the left.
More drinks spilled to the floor, as silence filled the plane for the first time since they took off. The lights flickered a moment, some muffled cries could be heard, Rei's grip upon the armrest next to her tightening even more ,her eyes shutting tightly. Memories of Makato telling her of her parents dying in a plane accident filled her mind the moment her lids shut, images filling her mind of a fiery death, a massive ball of flame slamming into the runway, as fire trucks pulled up too late to save any. Rei's eyes shot open, unable to even blink, feeling a large rough hand upon hers.
Once again, her eyes met her fathers, whose eyes were filled with remorse. Rei fought back the tears, as a silent conversation went on between herself and her father. She felt the man tug on her hand lightly, as Rei's grip turned to her father's. Rei felt like a small child, as the plane shook violently, her head jerking forward, a thud filling her ears as her vision blurred. She heard her father say something, but the images before her blurred together. She didn't feel anything to have affected it, until a numbness hit her nose, feeling warm thick liquid upon the tip of her mouth, running down her chin.
Her hand instantly went up to her nose, when a sharp pain finally made itself known the moment she touched it. She heard her father cry out again, a towel quickly placed over her face, her hands pushing others away, pain apparent with her father's touch. After a nod of reassurance, she felt her father's gaze leave her, but the fear was still evident in both their eyes. She heard the girl in front of her screaming about not being able to breath, the small man next to her quickly screaming for some type of bag.
The silence broke into cries, as a loud crash could be heard. Unable to tell if it was the plane, the wind, or them smashing into something, Rei's eyes moved out the window. Terror filled her eyes, as she was unable to pull her gaze away. Memories of her past filled her mind, her purple orbs unable to keep up the fight against the moisture, letting tears run down her cheeks. She remembered the day she had first met Usagi, and their adventures together, eventually increasing their small group of friends into a powerful force to be reckoned with. Though, as powerful as the senshi of fire was, there was nothing she could do in this situation, as she watched more memories pass by.
Author's Notes: This isn't going to be your usual Sailor Moon story. I'm going to try to make this different, so just bare with me for the first few chapters. It will most likely be very long, and full of suspense, so review and keep an eye out for the next chapter.