DISCLAIMER: I own nothing in this whole story. The characters belong to their creators.
Prologue - Goodbye
It was quiet that night in the hospital, apart from the hushed voices of two young women.
"Please don't make me do it Minako, I don't want to give away my child, she is the only thing I have left from him, of the two of us, together."
Minako averted her gaze from her best friend's pleading violet eyes and quivering lower lip. There had only been a few times throughout her whole life so far when Minako regretted her role as the leader of the Sailor Senshi. Today was one of them. It wasn't fair, but it had to be done. They couldn't change who they were, Minako had known that all along and now it was Mars' time to learn the truth.
"I'm sorry Rei, but you and a child would create complications that are not meant to be, as protectors of Serenity, Endymion and Small Lady, our duty is to protect the Royal Family, we are not supposed to fall in love, get married and have a family of our own, they would create unnecessary distractions. Besides we tried to change our destiny in the Silver Millennium remember? It failed horribly, the betrayals, the destruction, all that pain, it was because we couldn't accept our destinies. All we are Rei; all we have ever been trained to do is protect the princess, that is our purpose for living. In your heart you know that too, you know you can't keep the child," Minako gently but firmly told Rei the reality of their situation but Rei didn't want to take her explanation as the only answer. In her mind there had to be another way.
Her hand strayed unconsciously to play with the medical band around her wrist. She had given birth only that morning and she had dreaded the night. She knew Minako would come for her, to take her home and force her to leave her child behind. Rei 's hand then moved to caress the ring on her pinkie finger. The father of her child had given it to her, when they had sworn to love each other in life and in death, and now that he was gone, this child was the only part of him she had left that was real. This child and her memories of what had once been.
"Maybe if I told Serenity…" Rei started to suggest hesitantly but Minako's horrified expression silenced Rei.
"No, you must never tell Serenity, she must never know the pain we go through, she must think we are content and happy," Minako repeated a saying Rei had heard many times before and Rei was sick of it. She would never hurt Serenity intentionally, Minako knew that.
"I know that Minako-chan but…she is my child," Rei tried to impress upon the girl and although Minako's eyes were sympathetic, her words were cold and hard.
"Not anymore, this child is no longer yours, we will return to Crystal Tokyo immediately, Serenity thinks you have been in training at Mt Fuji, we will do nothing to make her suspect otherwise, pack yours things Rei, we leave tonight, the child will be taken care of," Minako said walking to the door of the room trying not to let her feelings and emotions get in the way of her duty.
"No Rei! I am sorry, but this is our life, the destiny of a Senshi," Minako's restraint tipped over the edge, angry at Rei for her betrayal of the senshi code and putting the rest of the Senshi through all this lying and hiding secrets from Serenity, Rei should have known better, "you always knew that Rei, why on Earth did you think you could change our future? You knew you would fail! We always fail!"
Rei gave a deep sigh as Minako made an effort to calm herself. She hadn't wanted to get so emotional. Emotions in situations like this were unwelcome. There was a long silence in which Rei clasped her hand to her chest sadly.
"I had hoped that this one time, in this one life, I could finally be truly happy, just like Serenity." Rei's words were so earnest and heartfelt that any anger or blame Minako had left towards Rei faded away.
Minako turned her back on Rei, not wanting to see the devastated look on Rei's beautiful face, for it broke Minako's heart.
"Come Rei, its time, the others are waiting downstairs," Minako entreated her and Rei looked away, pursing her lips knowing what had to be done. Minako was right, she was always right, that was why Minako was the leader of the Senshi. Rei had too much emotion and passion to be leader; Minako was always the one who could force herself to feel nothing.
"I'm coming," Rei gave in defeatedly and Minako bowed her head and left the room, giving Rei time to say farewell to her daughter.
Heart heavy, Rei swung her legs off the hospital bed and stood shakily by the cradle that held her newly born daughter, sleeping so peacefully, sucking contentedly on her miniature fist. Rei reached over slowly to brush the minimal hairs of darkest brown on her daughter's head and tears began falling from Rei's eyes like raindrops into the cradle and onto the blanket that covered her child. Rei leaned over to kiss her daughter's tiny puckered forehead.
"Goodbye Relena, I'm sorry I won't be able to watch you grow, or see your first steps, or hear your firsts words, or see your sweet smile," it was here Rei broke off her goodbye to sniff back tears and kiss Relena's tiny face once more, "whatever happens, I hope you always feel inside that I love you and I didn't want to give you up, but its for the best, I love you always and forever, sleep well, my little princess."
Minako heard her best friend's heartfelt goodbye to her newborn daughter and roughly wiped away the stray tears that had fallen involuntarily from her eyes. It is for the best Rei, Minako told herself as Rei walked past her slowly, eyes downcast, a torn piece of Relena's baby blanket clutched tightly in her hand and Minako followed her shaking her head, Senshi don't fall in love.
OOC: the Gundam boys won't be in it until the second chapter I think. Wait around for them, they are worth it!