(PGSM Rei x Minako pairing)

Chapter One. Miracle Of Our Meeting

Castle Balcony. Silver Millennium. Stealing a brief moment before the kingdom fully awakens, Venus stands at one of the palace balconies to watch the dawn. It was the time of the year when her bright planet was visible from the moon. 'The planet of love,' she smiled at the thought.

"It's still too cold out here," a soft voice permeated the morning silence. Venus felt a thin blanket wrapped around her, the warm hands of its giver lingering on her shoulders. "You should remember to take care of yourself."

Venus steals a glance at her companion. "I always have you to watch over me, right?" She was silently answered with a nod and an affectionate warm smile.

The vision of standing at the balcony soon dissipated as Minako stirred from her sleep. She slowly opens her eyes to find herself in bed but still wearing her red shirt and black skirt. She then remembered fainting last night while she was talking to Artemis. She oft wondered how her plushie cat guardian was capable of carrying her to bed, but she would put it off as one of the strange mysteries in life just as strange as she being the Senshi of Venus with memories from a past life and a mission to accomplish.

The thought of her mission brought a frown on her lovely face. She was against many odds and she was facing them alone. With a sigh, Minako began her day.

"So you won't be going here to Crown today?"

Ami as always was the early one at the secret room in Crown. It made sense to Rei to contact her than Usagi or Makoto.

"Yeah," Rei answered. "It's my mother's death anniversary today. I'll be at St. Juuban Church if you need me."

"I understand, Rei-chan. I'll tell Usagi-chan and Mako-chan."

Rei closed her cellphone and looked at her reflection. Although her mother wouldn't see her, she wanted to look presentable. With one last look, she grabbed her grey overcoat and walked outside.

In a busy street, a young idol was deftly making her way through the crowd. She made sure that she wouldn't be recognized by keeping her head down and wearing a fashionable cap big enough to hide her face.

"Minako," Artemis sounded worried again.

Minako looked at the cat stuffed inside her handbag. "What is it, Artemis?"

"Are you sure you're okay? It would be better if you stay at home and rest."

Minako frowned. She appreciated his concern but she didn't like to be reminded of her weakness. Despite being able to hide from their enemies, her dizzy spells were becoming more frequent.

"I just want to get some fresh air and have time to think." She glanced at the white plushie cat and smiled. "Besides, what can happen in a Church?"

Rei carefully placed a bouquet of white flowers on her mother's grave. She always brought her mother white flowers, like the moon where as a child she dreamt her mother would be.

Kneeling down, Rei remembered the day in the hospital when her mother passed away. She had suddenly felt an emptiness in her heart, followed by the rush of fear. She slowly walked to her mother's bed. She didn't even notice the tears running down her cheeks as she called for her mother. That emptiness never left her, especially when her father was never around for her.

"Mama," she silently prayed, "I'm doing my best as a miko and a senshi. I will be strong, Mama. I won't need help, even from Papa."

She was lifted from her memories by a hand on her shoulder.

"Your mother must be pleased," the priest said. "If you came with your father, she would probably be more pleased."

Her face hardened at the mention of her absentee father. "Father, he's been a workaholic since mother died. I don't think my mother wishes this."

Shaking his head, the priest left her.

"Artemis," Minako said as she stepped into the Church grounds. "Can you wait for me outside? I'd like to be alone."

"I'll guard the premises, Princess." The cat obediently hopped out of the bag into the bushes.

Minako walked past the wooden doors into the beautiful European-inspired Church. She removed her cap and slowly walked down the aisle to the altar. The tall pointed arches and the stained glass altar made Minako smile. This was one of her favorite places. A part of her always felt at home here. Maybe it was the silence and the smell of candles. Maybe it was the semblance of being in London. She knelt down and prayed.

As she closed her eyes in prayer, images of her past life flickered in her mind like home movies. The beautiful Moon Kingdom of the Silver Millennium. Her fellow senshis guarding the moon princess. These were memories she held dear. In that lifetime, she was not only looked up to the way she was as an idol. Her life was filled with love and friends. Unfortunately, that life ended because of the ill-fated love of her Moon princess and the prince of Earth.

"I vowed to keep my princess safe. That means to keep her from her prince. Even if I have to fight fate itself."

Another image flashed in her mind, an image she frequently tried to suppress. It was the memory of a smile, one that was rarely given but when earned, it was always warm. It was a memory that always tugged at her heart, a memory that made her heart burn with longing, a memory that found its way into her songs. She shook her head to loose the feeling invoked.

"I can't spend my time in trivial matters. I have a mission to fulfill and they have yet to awaken to their powers. I cannot loose focus."

She bowed her head one last time uttering a prayer for strength. She quietly stood up and walked to the door.

She put on her cap thinking where Artemis would be. "He might've felt bored outside and decided to take a stroll," she thought. She continued walking. A few steps after she passed another girl, the priest accosted her for assistance.

"Excuse me," she heard the priest call out. She turned around to see if she could help.

"He seems abandoned. He's fatigued." The priest explains to another girl.

Rei couched beside the priest. The other girl looked up at her, surprise written on her face.

"There's something familiar about her," Rei thought at she met the other girl's hazel eyes. To her, they seemed to swim with recognition and worry. "What could make a pretty girl like her worry," Rei thought.

The priest bent to carry the dog in his arms. "Could you please help me get him inside?" He addressed the two girls.

Rei broke the eye contact to see that the priest had already stood up. She shuffled to her feet and walked ahead to the office at the back.

She ran with the priest to find a dog lying on the pavement. Filled with concern for its condition, she sat beside the dog. "How pitiable!"

Feeling another person join them, she looked up. "Sailor Mars!" She was surprised to find the Fire Senshi with her. Rei looked up to meet her eyes. She melted in the other girl's searching gaze. "Why is she here," she asked herself. She didn't hear the priest talking until Rei looked away.

Minako followed Rei and the priest. Rei seemed to know where she was going. "But why is she here," she still asked herself.

In the priest's small office, the two girls helped fix a space for the dog. Later, the dog was lying on a mat with a blanket over it and a heater nearby to keep it warm.

"He seems to have a cold," the priest declared. "He will be better once he feels well."

Rei looked up at the priest as she hangs on to his encouraging words. "Thank goodness," she heard the other girl say. She couldn't help but smile.

With the priest assuring them that the dog would be fine, Minako was relieved. She had a soft spot for the sick.

"Father," a nun spoke up to remind the priest of their activities.

"I'll watch him." Rei offered.

Minako found herself also offering her time to watch the dog.

When the priest left them, she affectionately patted its soft hair.

Castle Infirmary. Silver Millennium. Venus tenderly watched over the sleeping form of Mars. In the most recent battle with Queen Metaria's youma, Mars recklessly took an energy beam directed at her.

Mars' eyes fluttered open. "Venus," she whispers.

"Shhh," Venus answers. "It'll be alright."

"Are you okay?"

"Yes, I am. You were reckless again."

"If that's your way of thanking me, you're welcome."

"I don't want you to risk yourself for me. Our first priority was to destroy the youma."

"You know as well as I do that we cannot stand idlly by if another Senshi is in danger. Especially since you were the one in danger." Mars looks at Venus with love and concern. "I cannot blindly follow your orders, even if you're the leader."

"Mars," Venus leans over to kiss her on the cheek. Had she been in Mars' place, she probably would've done the same.

Rei busied herself with fixing the blanket over the dog.

"It'll be alright," the other girl said with a comforting smile.

The words seemed to mysteriously tug at her heart. There really was something very familiar with the other girl.

A few minutes after, she noticed a familiar picture on the cover of a magazine. "Oh," she exclaimed. She gave the other girl a better look.

"I finally know."

The other girl slowly raises her head to meet Rei's eyes.

"I finally know," she heard Rei say.

She looked up, worried that Rei's 'gift' has blown her cover.

Rei stood up and picked a magazine from one of the boxes. "I thought we met before," she said then shows Minako the cover.

She looked away as a wave of relief comforted her. She smiled and noticed that Rei was surprised at her reaction.

"You're the first girl I've met who doesn't know me," she explained.

Aino Minako smiled at her, pleasantly surprised that she doesn't know her. Rei smiled smugly. "I'll bet you don't get that everyday," she thought.

"I don't watch TV that much," she told her.

"So, Mars doesn't watch TV that much," Minako thought. "She probably doesn't listen to my songs either."

"But my friend is a big fan," Rei continues. "Before she went to the hospital to get your signature."

Minako knew exactly who she was speaking of. The image of her princess jumping up and down her hospital room suddenly came to mind.

"Yeah," she affirmed. "I remember."

She gave Rei a huge smile. "I remember now. Your pictures were on the notebook too."

"Pictures?" Rei looked horrified. Usagi had some candid shots of her that she would love to burn if she had the chance.

"Don't worry, you look very cute in those pictures," she answered with a wink. "You photograph well. You should be an idol."

"No way." Rei answered seriously. She stood up and walked behind Minako to hide her flushed cheeks.

Minako laughed.

After composing herself, she returned her attention to Minako who had grown silent all of a sudden.

"So even performers go to church alone?"

"I like it," the idol softly answered. "Because I can think of various things."

"Various things?" Rei wonders.

"Yes, various things."

Her voice sounded like her mind was a million miles away. Rei wondered if she could do something to make the smile return.

The dog's stomach suddenly growled.

Talking to Mars like this reminded her of Venus and Mars of the past life. It made her more sad to remember that she could not establish any relationship with the other Senshis.

She was roused from her sad thoughts by the dog's stomach.

"What a way to break a melancholic mood," Minako thought laughing. She looked over at Rei who joined her in laughter.

"If you have an appetite, you'll be all right." Rei addressed the dog.

Minako searched her pockets to see if she had food. Sometimes, she would bring something for Artemis. "All I have is candy," she said when her search produced two pieces of strawberry candy.

Minako apologetically showed her the only 'food' she had on her.

"Probably won't be good for him," Rei answered.

Minako shrugged and offered one to her.

Taking the candy, she thanked the idol. Inwardly, she was glad to see that her smile was back.

A sudden feeling of dread filled the pit of her stomach. "Youma," she thought standing up and running to the door. She remembered the young girl. "Ah, excuse me," she apologizes thinking it was rude of her to just run off like that.

Rei's swift movements caught her by surprise. There was a sense of urgency about her as she ran to the door, taking time to apologize to Minako.

"A youma? It can't be."

That was the only explanation that she could find.

She stands up and leaves the office to follow Rei. Running into the courtyard, she finds Sailor Mars throwing a fireball at the youma. The youma deftly evaded and ran away. Sailor Mars was on pursuit.

Minako began to follow when she heard her name being called out by Artemis.

"Minako, you can't fight now," the cat cautioned.

"But," she responded. Mars was fighting the youma alone. She made up her mind and follow the direction the Senshi of Fire took.

Sailor Mars inwardly cursed as the youma easily dodged her Youma Taisan. She ran after the agile youma until they entered the multi-purpose hall. She tried another ball of fire which the youma was also able to dodge.

Mars backed away as the youma began lashing her fencing sword at the senshi. "I must find a way to defeat this youma," she told herself. "It must have a weakness."

The youma grew more confident with every step it took, closer and closer to its raven haired enemy. It powered up its sword and threw a strong energy beam with a thrust of its sword.

"Ah!" Sailor Mars exclaimed as she fell on the floor.

Minako ran to the stage to watch Sailor Mars get hit by an energy beam and fall down. She takes a step forward.

"Wait." Minako looks back to see Artemis just a few steps behind her. "Stop Minako."

She looks back at the cornered senshi.

You know as well as I do that we cannot stand idlly by if another Senshi is in danger.

"Minako!" Artemis tried to put some sense into his ward's mind.

Especially since you were the one in danger.

Minako made up her mind. "Stop!"

From the stage, Sailor Mars heard someone call the youma's attention. Thinking it was one of her friends, she was surprised to find Aino Minako on stage.

"This isn't one of her acting performances," Mars irritably kept her toughts to herself. "No! Run Away!" She shouted. She would not forgive herself if an innocent would get hurt trying to save her, in Senshi form nonetheless.

"Venus Power, Make up!" Minako shouted.

Sailor Mars watched Aino Minako, the idol that Usagi so admired, transform into Sailor Venus.

"The ginzuishou is here. Take it if you want," the Princess challenged the youma.

"It can't be," she thought. "Aino Minako is Sailor Venus."