Hey all, Jessica here. It's been a while. I do apologize for not updating often. I got a lot of stuff going on, but I haven't forgotten about the story. I went through and fixed/changed a few things, edited it for mistakes: spelling and grammatical, and made sure that the details in the story matched my character outlines.
Creating new characters is hard enough, but keeping up with the outline is just as hard. I keep forgetting small things like their likes/dislikes, and which one had long hair and which one had the ponytail. I think I even messed on which one had the Leafe accessory around his wrist as opposed to his ankle. Quite annoying that I'm having trouble keeping it straight. *Shakes head* I expected better from myself. Hehe
Anyhow, with the new changes, be them small or big, if you liked my story before, you'll like it better now. So feel free to re-read it if you like. I'm much happier now that I nitpicked through it.
I'm working on the next chapter as we speak. I have great ideas and it's going to start getting more involved and the conflict between characters is about to get crazy. Plus, there have to be those down times between the action. The new knights are going to evolve and learn and change in new ways. Romance between the sisters and their flames will grow and progress, for the better or worse, only time will tell. Smiles, I love leaving you guys wanting more. Heck, I'm wanting more and I'm the one writing it.
Thanks for all your reviews. I really do appreciate them. I have other fanfictions to see to, but I'm not giving up on this one. So for those of you who were wondering or upset cuz you thought I might, don't fret, cuz I intend to finish it. I also already have a outline set up and ready for the sequel. Please enjoy. So that's enough talking. I give you...Second Chances.
(This story takes place immediately after the fight with Fenril. Slight recap of last events then the new story begins. I do not own Pretear and did not write the prologue, it's a recap of the anime. My own ideas start in Chapter One.)
He stirred, groaning when pain shocked his brain. He reached a hand up to his temple and felt the pulsing vein under his fingers. His whole body ached, but that was the proof of his existence. He was alive. He had survived. He thought for sure he was going to die.
He could hear footsteps on the pathway near him. Hayate, Leafe Knight of Wind, struggled a bit to open his eyes. The light blinded him at first. He started to sit up, leaning on his elbows for support. When his vision finally focused, he saw the source of the sound. White boots stopped just short of him. He looked up, midnight blue locking with the soft lavender eyes of his best friend.
He sat bolt upright, stunned to see that his friend was alive. Hayate had witnessed the great tree's attack piercing his friend through the back. He clearly remembered him lying on the ground in a puddle of his own blood and watched helplessly as he faded away into nothing. How could this be possible?
"Sa…Sasame! How did you…" Hayate exclaimed.
At Takako's voice, the Knight of Sound stepped aside, "Himeno…Himeno brought Sasame back to life." She answered, her voice breaking as she struggled to hold back the tears.
Hayate stood. He completely failed to notice her sadness. He assumed her tears were that of joy. He was too engrossed in relief for Sasame's resurrection that her tears went unnoticed. "She did? That's great!"
At those words, Takako broke down. She covered her face with her hands. Sasame's eyes were cast down at the ground. He looked so dejected.
"What's wrong?" He asked, frowning at the pair with concern.
Hayate was confused by their behavior. Everyone was alive. Takako was no longer evil. The fighting was over. Shouldn't they be ecstatic?
He heard muffled cries and Shin's distinct childish wails reached his ears. He looked past his friends to another sad scene behind them. He went from confused to horrified. He couldn't move. His feet felt like lead and his heart felt like it had stopped beating.
There on the ground, lying in a bed of flowers, surrounded by family and the remaining Leafe' Knights, was Himeno. Sasame looked at his best friend and his heart broke. Hayate hadn't shown any interest in anyone for as long as they had known each other. Now when he'd finally found someone he felt so deeply for, she had been taken from him. Sasame wanted his friend to feel the same love in his heart that he himself felt. It wasn't fair. Hayate had been robbed of his happiness and it was all his fault.
With a gentle push, Sasame led Hayate and Takako to join the others. The three of them gazed down at the seemingly peaceful girl. Himeno's eyes were closed. She looked like she had simply fallen asleep among the flowers. She was like an angel. Takako's rose colored lips quivered. Her hands shook as she covered her face. Consumed with guilt and pain, she completely broke into heavy, heart wrenching sobs. Her cries rivaled that of the two youngest Leafe Knights, Hajime and Shin. There wasn't a dry eye among them, be it family or friend. Himeno, their beloved Pretear, was dead. Their loving, kind, energetic, vibrant Pretear...their friend...was dead. Tears flowed freely from Hayate's shocked eyes.
"She became the Legendary White Pretear…by herself?" He asked no one in particular. His voice sounded strange, even to himself. The sound expressed his surprise at her accomplishment, but it wasn't normal. It was shaken; distant.
No one responded. They all continued mourning for their Princess of Light. Sasame felt he should say something. He cleared his throat. He spoke in a soft tone, almost as though he were relaying their story for the gods to write into history. He didn't know why, but decided that it needed to be said. No one was going to mind.
"The Legendary White Snow falls upon the land, curing those with injured hearts. And for those who suffered…this snow of miracles would heal them all. Himeno became the White Pretear and fought against the Great Tree, giving it Leafe'. She gave it as much as it wanted…and she beat it. Then she used all she had left to bring us back. She didn't care what our sins were. She sacrificed herself to save us all."
Hayate listened, but wasn't really hearing Sasame. He glanced up at her family. They were devastated; far more than he would have guessed. They had been so distant with Himeno ever since he'd met her. Though it seemed too little too late, they showed how much they truely cared for Himeno. Her father, Kaoru, was in shock, but he had expected that. He knew the man lost his first wife when Himeno was just a child. Now he just lost his little girl. Hayate watched the older man stare at his daughter's prone form. Today, Kaoru lost the most important person in his life.
Behind the grieving father was Mawata. She clung to her step-father, her forehead pressed against his shoulder, her tears soaking through his orange cardigan. She was in turmoil. She had been through so much in the last few weeks. She'd been alone, then manipulated, tricked and used. She'd been terrified through it all. Himeno, her silly and weird step-sister, had rescued her. She'd been saved by Himeno and then lost her all in the same day. It was more than she could bare.
The pink haired, spoiled, Mayune could no longer hold back her sorrow. Though she never voiced it or showed it, she was happy to have another sister. She would admit that the changes in her life were unwanted at first. However, after a few weeks with her new family members, she had grown to appreciate them, especially the girl. Now Himeno was dead. She never got the chance to let her know she cared and now she never would. Mayune screamed, crawling forward to confront the 'sleeping' girl in front of her. She would not tolerate this. She shook Himeno's shoulders, pleading for her to wake, demanding her to open her eyes, but nothing happened. She did not answer Mayune's cries.
Hayate looked on as Natsue, the girls' mother, reached out to stroke her daughter's hair. She pulled her in close and held on to Mayune to calm herself as much as to console the hysterical teen. Natsue's tears reflected the sadness and guilt she held in her own heart. She'd never taken the time to really get to know Himeno. She was always busy with her new husband or work. Now she would never get the chance to and, now that it was too late, she suddenly longed for it.
At Himeno's feet stood her Knights: Mannen, Hajime, Shin, Goh, and Kei. The three youngest were huddled around Goh, clinging to his legs.
Goh choked out, refusing to remove his hands from his younger brothers. The physical contact was the only thing that kept him from collapsing. "Thanks…Himeno. Thanks for everything."
"We'll never find another Pretear of this caliber…ever again," Kei cried, a hand covering his delicate features. He clutched his stomach. He felt like he was going to be sick. Losing their Pretear was enough to make him feel nauseous.
Sasame and his love, Takako, stood off to the side alone, "Himen…"
"Sorry," Hayate interrupted and kneeled to lean over his Pretear. Everyone was now focused on him, "Himeno…I'm a great big failure as a Knight. While I knew all along what was in my heart…I didn't have the courage to tell you face to face."
He laid a hand on her cheek and held her face. His thumb caressed her skin. He was crying uncontrollably now. Hot tears slid down his usually stern face and dropped on to hers.
"But I'll keep the promise I made…now."
The others were stunned by his confession for their fallen Princess and they wished he had the chance to tell her for real. His affection for her had always been there, but to hear him say it aloud was totally unexpected.
Sasame watched as his heartbroken friend leaned down and kissed Himeno. He prayed silently, hoping upon hope that this wouldn't be the end. It couldn't be.
'This snow of miracles heals those with broken hearts, but one had not been saved…please...please…bring back her smile…just one more time.'
Hayate pulled away, staring at the one he loved, cursing himself for wasting the time he could have spent with her. He closed his eyes, trying to stop the flood that continued to flow. When he opened them again, he saw movement flutter across her face. Excitement shivered up his spine at the thought of her possibly being alive, but he could have imagined it. He moved his face slightly closer.
Sasame saw it too, 'If there is a miracle called love…bring back her smile.'
Hayate pulled Himeno into his arms the second her eyes opened fully and smiled at him. He could hear cheering somewhere behind him, but nothing mattered more right then than the girl lying in his arms. Himeno had come back to him. He had been given a second chance. He wasn't going to let it slip by a second time.