A/N: well, isn't this a fine pickle I've found myself in. Although I do not wish to divulge into specifics of my own fault and miscalculation, I've left my fan fiction binder in a location that I will be unable to access for the next month and a half at the least. As a result I needed a new project to tide me over. One, I regret to say not Sailor Moon related. So, I got to thinking about Mai Hime and Mai Otome decided that I'd cook up this little number. It will bridge the two worlds to the best of my abilities. I hope you will enjoy and do not fear, my binder will return later on to continue with the Sailor moon fan fictions.

I do not own Mai Hime or Mai Otome, I am merely a fan.


Prologue: What I knew. What I Know. What I am.

Once long ago there were princesses who shed blood in order to save loved ones. Fabled were the stories that were spoken of. Only after the last of the princesses stood would true power be granted to her. Sadly, it was after defeat that one learned the true cost of their actions. The one thing lost was the thing most important to them. Most of these princesses believed that it was their own life and their own blood that would be lost. However, I know now, this was not the case. Instead, the lives that were lost were the people they loved most.

Only one could be the victor. Only one princess would remain. These were the fairytales I grew up with long ago. Funny, looking back now I've gained insight on the real horror of the situation. It hadn't played out as the stories told. We broke the laws. We changed the story. It hadn't ended like we were told it would. Now that time goes on I've realized that eternity and history will repeat.

I was once a teen angry with everything I thought I knew. I was once called Natsuki. Not that I don't own the same name mind you, but I have evolved as it were. I'm no longer Kuga Natsuki, a small teen with less than ideal means of dealing with my emotions. Nevertheless it took one more fight, another death, to really understand the severity of what a HiME is. The power can be so easily abused.

I was foolish to believe it had ended. We all were to some level or degree. The tranquility of life provided a false hope that we really had ended the Star for good. What we hadn't realized, is when we blew the damned thing up we provided the catalyst to build new power. This supremacy could be accessible to anyone who merely found a fragment on the ground. I guess that's how it started all those years ago.

I know the events happened to me, but, looking back I know I've grown so much from the girl I used to be. If I'm a reincarnation from the past, or new childhood memories just happen to flood my mind, I'm not overly positive. It could be either one. Quite frankly, I don't really care at this point what caused me to be as I am today.

What does matter is what happened back then, what really caused the power of the Otome. The power that used to belong to the HiME. The star that governed us back then. It's the power I don in my ear. The same one that had been hell bent on destruction. I remember the first day I found out. It plays like a movie in my mind even today.

~~~~FLASH BACK~~~~

"These records don't make sense Midori." A girl with blue hair sighed as she removed the sweat from her brow. The hot day wasn't very forgiving on her dark biking leathers. "The star is gone already. We've dealt with it. Let who ever the hell ends up suffering next deal with the damn thing." She tossed some files onto the outdoor table and swigged her beer. "The last thing I want to do is fight another pointless battle. Life is good now; I want it to stay that way."

"You mean Shizuru has stopped blaming herself and you don't want her to relive her past." The eldest woman nodded knowingly. "Even so, your choice in this could be one that will be unforgivable. It may be your relatives, you're very own kids even. The truth is, history will repeat. The fact artificial HiME were created before only further signifies that fact Natsuki, and you know it." She placed her papers into her folder and sighed as she began leaning in her chair.

"I know, I know." It was a fact. Uncertainty was one of the issues that made life hard. The entire high school ruckus had subsided; life was peaceful and had been for many years. All of them were older. Some, like Natsuki, had wanted families but refused to harbor the wants because of an expense unwilling to be paid. They wouldn't be responsible for any more HiME battles. "Why do you think Shizuru and I refuse to start a family? Like hell will I be responsible for that."

"I want to show you something…" She placed a small red fragment on the table, it glistened, and it shined. It held power. "Tell me, do you really believe the star was really a star? Perhaps it was something else."

"Yeah…like what." Natsuki picked up the red stone. No doubting it was the power of the long forgotten star. "This thing isn't what I would call a threat." She placed it back on the table as it still glowed. "Let me know if some real danger comes out of the woodwork, but keep you're pretty trinkets too yourself."

"I have proof." That caught a skeptical look. "I can prove this thing is dangerous." Taking a vial of red liquid from her pocket she held it to the stone. The red glowing got worse, a deep heat also radiated from it. The sure signs that its power levels grew were hard to miss. "See? Now you tell me that it's not risky. This is my blood, and I'm a former HiME. I bet it would react the same too you."

"Alright, you've captured my full attention." Natsuki cringed thinking of the possibilities behind this. "What do you propose this…thing…is? It's not only a star is it?" Mulling it over, the HiME star did burst, but that didn't warrant the possibilities that little red fragments had rained from the sky. "And while we're pulling theories out of our butts, why not tell me how this even got here?"

"I'm not sure. I would tend to think it's a power like the star. If it actually is a star, well, I'm not sure. I found it at an excavation site. I found a few more like it around here recently too." She pocketed the little gemstone. "I gave one to a friend to look at. I also gave one to Yukino. I'm hoping that someone can find something out.

"I've got a contact I can call. I'll do it later if you got a spare I can give him. I don't know what good it would do, but worth a shot."

~~~~~END FLASHBACK~~~~

Back then I was stupid. I was too caught up in my life to even care about the matters at hand. To think I could have lost her, to have lost my family, and even my own happy little world frightened me. Back then I was still a scared little child, even as an adult. Indeed how funny it is to look back now knowing times have changed.

Changed… Indeed we had, and, life goes on. How many times I wonder. There will be a child that will be me one day won't she…heh, what a crock. Human testing. Genetic experiments. How wonderfully screwed up it is to really know the truth.

That girl. I was that girl in my memories, and yet, I'm not. I'm my own person, with my own goals, my own dreams. Rather, I'd like to think of that woman as my mother. A child will follow my legacy one day too. She will remember my life, just as I remember the women who looked like me from the past. Perhaps, that too, is the power of my gem. The power that still to this day governs us all. Whatever it is, I choose to live for now, not the past that should have been forgotten.

Even as I say that, it doesn't change the facts of how it happened, how I came to be. All it does is make my life a little easier. All it does is grant myself a small vanity that I will one day cease to live on. The power of a Gem… Yes… that's all it took to get everything started.

TBC~


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