Disclaimer: I don't own Escaflowne

"Ayame, are you going to the newspaper club today?" Mei asked. She was Ayame's good friend and co-editor of their high school's newspaper.

Ayame Susumu, who, until that moment, had been writing in her notepad, accidentally snapped her pen, and splattered ink all over herself and looked up at her friend.

"Mei," she whined. "You broke my concentration!"

"Yeah, but you broke your pen," Mei laughed.

Ayame looked down at her shirt. "Aw, man! That's going to take forever to get out!" She looked up at her friend. "And I wasn't planning on going to the newspaper club anyway. My parent's are going out tonight and they want me to watch Hana."

"That sucks," said Mei. "I would hate having to watch a little baby all night."

"You could offer to help me with her, you know," Ayame hinted not-too-subtly.

"No can do, girl," said Mei. "I've got a date with Kenji tonight." She pretended to weigh the options in her hands. "So, would I rather be watching a baby all night or go have fun with and incredibly hot guy? I choose the hot guy!"

"Mei, I'm surprised at you! I thought that you would be there for your friend," Ayame replied in a false hurt tone.

"You know me better!" Mei laughed. She began to walk off. "Have fun with the screaming baby tonight. Maybe you should tell her a story or something!"

"Yeah, see you later," Ayame said. She picked up her stuff and jammed it in her backpack before proceeding to walk home.

"Mom! Dad! I'm home!" Ayame called when she opened her door to her house.

Her mother walked up to hug her. She acted the same way when Ayame came home ever since she started walking by herself. Apparently, it was because she saw her friend disappear, and so she was afraid that her daughter would leave the house and never come back.

It didn't make any sense to Ayame why her mother acted like that but not her father. They had apparently both been friends with the girl who disappeared.

When she was younger, she used to believe their stories that the girl had been taken away not once, not twice, but three times from Earth via a pillar of blue light and a mysterious dark haired boy. When she got older, she would ask them what really happened, but for some reason, even though she was a teenager, they would stick to that story, though she was sure that the story they told her had just as much credibility as the story that the stork brought babies to parents.

"Ayame," her mother said after she finally let go of her. "Your shirt is stained. What happened?"

"My pen broke?" she explained, though it came out more like a question than a statement, as this had happened so often.

Her mother rolled her eyes. "You should probably stop using pens," her mother told her. "You'd ruin fewer shirts."

"Pencils smudge and fade easier," Ayame complained. "I'd never be able to make out older stories!"

"Well, I can't say I understand your fixation with stories," her mother shrugged, "but I guess this is what you like."

Ayame nodded. "Well, I'm going to go do my homework," she said, turning in the direction of her room.

Her mother smiled.

In truth, Ayame had finished all of her homework at school that day. She sat down at her desk and took out her notebook and a new pen. She put the pen to the page and began to write again.

Of course, she believed none of what her parents said about a beam of light from the sky and a mysterious boy taking their friend away, but lately, it had been going through her dreams.

It wasn't just the beam of light, either. She was dreaming about a different world. In her dreams, she seemed to know it as Gaea. She always hated to wake up from these dreams. They were always filled with magic, adventure and (she had no idea where her subconscious had thought this up) giant robots.

The dreams were so thrilling that she just had to write them down.

She was actually amused at herself. Her story not only entailed all of that, but it even used the myth of Atlantis.

Well, she thought, a little Greek mythology never hurt anyone, did it?

What she surprised herself with was her putting Issac Newton as the main villain of it all. She wasn't sure where she thought that up. It must have been when she had stayed up all night with Mei the week before, but when she put it on paper, it seemed to fit.

She had just finished the conclusion that had her parent's friend, Hitomi Kanzaki, finally leaving for the third time with her love, Van Fanel, when her father knocked on the door.

"Ayame, your mother and I are leaving now, alright?" he asked.

"Okay, Dad," she said, not really listening. She had heard it before, and she knew what he was saying.

"We'll be home around midnight," he continued. "If Hana wakes up, her bottle is in the refrigerator, and the emergency numbers are on the counter."

"I got it, Dad," she replied.

"I'll see you later," he said. "I love you."

"Love you too," she said back. She would not have known that he left the room had she not heard the door close.

She was focusing at a fresh page of her notebook. There was another story forming in the back of her mind, but it was quite incomplete. She had no idea where to begin.

Just then, Hana started crying from the other room. Ayame picked up her notebook and pen and went into the other room. She placed them on the rocking chair and went over to the crib.

She picked up her little sister and started rocking her back and forth in her arms.

"Come on," she said. "Please stop crying!"

It took a while before Hana finally calmed down. Ayame turned back to the rocking chair and sat there to write. She thought that it would be the best place to be if Hana started crying again.

She stared at the page. A beginning for the continuation had just come to her.

But Gaea was restless. The peace it was holding between nations would not be there for much longer. Therefore, the powers that created that world decided that they needed another to help it once more. For the first time in years, the pillar of light descended upon Earth.

No sooner had Ayame finished that sentence than the room had filled with a blue light.