"For argument's sake."
By: Isis @}---
isis@moonkingdom.com
Rating: G

Disclaimers: Sailor Moon doesn't belong to me, and chances are it
doesn't belong to you either. But this story is mine alone and I
would like to keep it that way.

Author's Notes: Well, I believe an introduction should be in order.
My name is Isis; I am the goddess of many names but in Roman
times I was worshipped as the goddess of Art and Literature, so
therefore Anime has become a favorite of mine. Especially Sailor
Moon. This fan-fiction uses the characters but little else from the
series. You'll see when you read it. By the way, yes I know
Darien is suppose to be five years older, but it works better this
way. They are now four years apart. Besides, I am a goddess, I
can do what I want!

This is a rather lengthy work and I have posted it all at the same
time, basically because I hate waiting to find out an ending. But it
is broken into chapters for your reading enjoyment. This is a
romance, but anyone without a sense of humor is advised to leave
now.

By the way, I love e-mail! Modern inventions are so cool! Ur,
sorry. Anyway, you may send any and all messages of love and
endearment to the goddess by way of my alter ego, Carolyn.
Address is at the top. Any flames... well, let's just say that it isn't
intelligent to make a goddess mad.


Prologue
*@}---*


Darien couldn't believe this. He had two finals to take tomorrow, a
report to correct for the umpteenth time, and exactly 18 hours to do
it in. Not to mention sleep!

"No, oh no. Anything but Hurricane Serena! Please, just not
today! I'm almost home." But inevitably, there she was, like a
skinny blond Ping-Pong ball. Walk, skip, hop hop, giggle, laugh,
run... run into something, mumble apology to light pole, laugh at
herself, skip, hop hop, giggle, giggle, giggle... notice Darien.

"Hey Darien!" She waved frantically to him from down the street.
Running full tilt she dove and dodged her way through the other
sidewalk crawlers to where he was discretely waiting for the
intersection's light to change. "Whatcha up to?" she asked in that
rubber-made bouncyness of hers.

"Total stress melt-down," Darien answered honestly. *Maybe
she'll feel sorry for me and just go away.*

"That's because you need to get out more."

*Guess not.* "I get out plenty, thank you." He shifted his
attention back to the red walk light that was refusing to change.
"Shouldn't you be worried about some final tests too, Meatball
Head?" With her hair usually done up in two odangos and long
ponytails, it did look like meatballs.

"Oooh, don't call me THAT!!"

The force of her wail even threw him off balance. "All right, all
right. Geesh, don't pop a lung!"

"Humph. And anyway, I only have one test left tomorrow.
Besides, me, STUDY, no way!"

"Yeah, right, dumb question." He saw the light grudgingly change
color. His escape had arrived at last. "Well, gotta run. Good luck
on your test. See ya!" Darien turned quickly toward the busy
crosswalk.

"See ya around, Darien. Hope you ace your finals!" And with an
over exaggerated wave she was off.

Skip, skip-CRASH!

Darien froze with one step off the curb. He didn't even want to
look. But slowly he leaned back out to see around the street post
that was blocking his view, to see Serena sprawled out over the
bench that had obviously gotten in her way. He could almost see
the birds flying around her head.

"Serena?"

"Oh!" With a little laugh she popped back to a sitting position
next to the bench. "Gee, who put this thingy here?" She gave a
little nervous laugh to the line of people who had stopped to stare
at her. Her face turned a bright shade of maroon as she smoothed
out her school uniform's skirt.

"Serena, are you all right?" Darien hadn't moved from the curb
yet.

"Oh, ya!" She bounced back to her feet again. "Just a klutz-
attack, you know me."

At this point in time Darien wished he didn't know her. "Just try
not to hurt yourself... or anyone else, OK?" he said, remembering
exactly how many times he had been on the receiving end of her
'attacks'. He wondered idly if she had a medical condition that
obstructed the chemicals in her brain from functioning normally.

*That would explain an awful lot.*

"Sure thing, Dare. I'm way over my quota for the day anyway.
See ya!" With that she turned and sprinted away, narrowly
missing a traffic sign and a few defenseless pedestrians.

Darien sighed and continued the last of his trek home. By all logic
that girl should be perpetually black and blue with at least one
broken bone at any given time. It actually amazed him how she
could always look so unfazed by it all. It wasn't humanly
possible! Serena had probably had a personal conversation with
every pole, post, bench, and sidewalk obstruction in the entire city!
Maybe he should just be thankful that she wasn't old enough to
drive.

Darien had to laugh to himself as he wandered through the
crowded streets of Tokyo. Serena was a klutz, and a bit of a flake,
and she probably had permanent brain damage from all the hits her
skull took, but he liked her. Why he didn't know, but she was just
one of those sweet, bubbly people that you couldn't help but like.
Even though he had tried.

But she had the mood-swing time of a professional schizophrenic.
She could go from "happy-go-lucky, isn't it a great world," to fire
department water-works in .025 seconds. He knew, he'd timed it.
It wasn't like he enjoyed making her mad, but sometimes his
teasing went a little over-board. He couldn't help it if he thought
she was cute when she was arguing with him. Besides, she knew
he didn't mean all those things, or else she wouldn't keep talking
to him.

But enough about Serena, he decided. She could wait until after
his psychology test.


Done. Completely and totally done! His first year in college was
over. Darien had totally aced the Physics final, the Psychology test
wasn't as bad as he thought, and his Western Civilization paper
had been perfected the night before. Funny, he should have passed
out an hour ago. But he felt as bouncy as Serena. Minus the pole
fetish.

*Odd,* he thought, *I'm almost to our usual bumping grounds and
she's no where to be seen.* It was a rare day when the two didn't
meet up between the college campus and his street corner. *Of
course, this is the last day of school, her teacher was probably
easy on her today and didn't give her detention for sleeping
through class again.*

If she got out of school at the normal time she would always miss
him by half an hour. But again, it was rare that they didn't see
each other. *Oh, but I bet I know where you are, Meatball Head.*

Bypassing his usual crosswalk he continued down another block
and turned the corner. The Crown Royal Arcade was Serena's
drug of choice. She was a total video-game junky. Not to mention
the fact that she had a crush on Andrew, one of the guys that
worked there, and Darien's best friend. Needless to say it was the
perfect spot to catch a now graduated ninth-grader. *Provided that
she passed with all of those lovely C's. Besides, Andrew had to
take that psych final this morning too, I wonder how he did.*

As he walked in a sound assaulted his ears. *Serena?* Normally
he could always tell it was her by her hysterical voice screaming at
one of the games. "No way! I dodged that one!!" or "Die you
stupid monster! DIE!" But this time it wasn't her voice that he
recognized, it was her... sobs? She was crying. He could pick out
her unique wailing anywhere. He'd seen the great flood hundreds
of times before, but this was different. True heartfelt sobs...

He found her buried in Andrew's arms shaking slightly. Andrew
looked up at his friend with a totally helpless expression in his
eyes, pleading with Darien to do something. "Meatball Head?" he
asked quietly. Usually the nickname he used with her sent them
into an argument, but this time she didn't seem to care. She looked
up from Andrew's shoulder and Darien nearly backed away from
her.

The tear stains on her face and the utter sadness in her blue eyes
was all wrong. They were foreign objects that shouldn't have
belonged to her. Not her.

"Darien," she whispered. The tears manifested themselves again
in her eyes as she flung herself from Andrew's protective care to
him.

She wrapped her small arms around him so tightly that he nearly
choked. He stood there stunned into a petrified lump. His mind
wasn't working. The only thing he could think was that this
wasn't right. Why was she crying?

He numbly wrapped his arms around her not knowing what else to
do. It was like she was on fire or something and he just wanted to
put her out. His only thoughts were: *What do I do? What's
wrong with her?*

Darien looked over at Andrew with a "help-me" look on his face.
The other just shook his head slowly. *You're a lot of help.* He
looked down at the trembling form that was soaking the front of
his shirt. *Well, when in doubt, ask the source.*

"Serena?" No response. "Serena, what is it? Can you tell me?"
He tried to move her back a little so he could look at her, but she
just clung more tightly to him.

*Well that didn't work.* He began to mentally analyze Serena's
life. Everything he knew or had been told about her. More than a
year's worth of material that he hadn't realized he knew. What
could be wrong? This was the last day of school, she should be
happy about that. She hates school. "Serena, what is it? Did
something happen at school today?"

She stiffened a little in his arms and slightly nodded her head into
his shirt.

School then. Maybe one of her friends was moving away. She
was a fiercely devoted friend and something like that could
devastate her... Another thought sprang a surprise attack on him.
*She hates school.*

"Serena... you didn't... flunk, did you?"

With a little stifled cry she backed away from him enough to look
up at him. She shook her head.

"Then what happened?" he asked trying to wipe away some of
those ugly tears.

Slowly, still fighting her jagged breathing she found her voice.
"I... flunked my... test today. ...Now... I have to... do... make-
up work..." she broke off and smashed herself back into his chest.
"...this summer!" she finished talking to his shirt buttons.

*Make up work!! She's totally freaked out about make up work!?*
Out of curiosity he looked down at her again. "What subject?"

"Psy...chology," she sniffed.


_____________
@}--- Words of encouragement: "If they give you ruled
paper, write the other way." -Juan Ramón Jimenez.