A/N: I have no explanation as to why I did this, but I tend to blame the fact that that my six friends (All boys or Butchy girls) have sort of kidnapped me for the past week whenever I have a spare moment of time since we have had a lot of birthdays, friends returning from the navy for some leave time, and so on…the list is endless…anyway…last night our anime marathon ran late and now I have an inspiration that I don't want to have…that said, I haven't slept all night and I think the only way I'll get a moment of peace is if I type up…well, whatever it is that my brain concocted.
For the record, this is why you don't watch anime with my mob of friends…
I do not own Sailor Moon.
Chapter 1: Memory
"Is she out cold?" Sailor Mars sighed holding onto her wrist. That youma had been a particular challenge to take down.
"Looks like it." Minako sighed, She had already undone her transformation, draping a coat across the partly exposed form of Sailor Mercury.
"I've never seen her go all out like that though." This was Jupiter, her voice highly fatigued. "You were lucky Mars."
"I don't feel very lucky." Her guilt was tenfold as she lifted the unconscious form into her arms. "She shouldn't have pulled that stunt."
"It got you to safety." Makoto had also dropped her transformation. "We'll walk back from here, use the roof tops; we'll meet up at the shrine."
The battle had been particularly tiresome. The new enemy wasn't exactly an easy target to track down, and the more they tried the more danger they had found themselves in. Although the outcome of the combat seemed bleak, it happened every single time. The enemy was one that didn't cause massive havoc to the surrounding areas, but did cause issues among the Senshi, what was worse; well that was the difficult thing.
"Setsuna said that this will continue for quite a while." Makoto sighed out. "That youma though…I just can't understand why Rei froze like that."
"I can." Minako was sort of stressed with the entire situation. "These youma are versions of us. Things we regret things we left undone."
"We know that, so then why did Rei freeze like that. It was almost as if she wanted to be killed by that youma." Makoto was still dense in many ways.
"That was a direct clone. What's worse is that we are fighting real versions of ourselves. Versions I know to be truth." Of all of the girls, Setsuna and Minako suffered the most. "We did some pretty terrible things. Those things are now facing us, but what's worse than that, is if you haven't noticed we pick up a particular memory when we face one of these things off, Rei picked up one that I knew she would remember, I just didn't think it would be this soon."
"Is it a bad memory?" They had reached the shrine steps and Minako had shaken her head the negative. "If it isn't bad then why are you upset."
"I love her, and for three years I've been on the fence about the entire thing. Now she knows why." Relationship issues always revolved around Minako.
"You two have had road blocks before; it wouldn't need to be a big deal…would it?" Makoto's honesty was astounding, but now wasn't the time for that.
"This time it does, that particular road block, well, let's just say it's going to complicate matters." Minako didn't look back, instead focused on checking in.
When isn't it complicated?" Makoto asked out for no one in particular. Their lives held complexity that no one would ever fully understand.
Intense lavender eyes fell on the form of the girl she was caring for. Why were things always so hard? She would never truly know. Fate loved to toy with emotions and plans that they had thought were for the best. The blush Rei had was due in part of a few things. One, the girl before her was partly exposed, the slash marks having cut though her fabric. Second, she had used her powers to help power down her fallen comrade, knowing that it wasn't good to stay transformed after being knocked out, only to be gifted a more embarrassing surprise. Thirdly, she remembered something that made her feel conflicted.
Her mouth was dry as she placed a blanket over Ami. The battle had been hard, the aftermath leaving behind enough imagery to place a few pieces to the puzzle together. Memories had flooded into Rei; the particular youma was a memory of a past love, one she felt unwilling to let herself remember fully. She could only hope Ami was unable remember particular aspects. She shook her head, some things didn't need to be relived, a part of her felt unfaithful.
"Rei, come with me." Minako's voice called Rei out of her inward prison. "Makoto will look after her for a little while; I think we need to talk." The severity in Minako's eyes let Rei know that she knew. Minako remembered the past vividly, and Rei was at a loss. "I'm not mad, but we do need to talk." She walked out the door, going back to the steps, hoping Rei would follow her without much of a fuss, thankfully she did. "You know now…" Minako spoke out as she took a seat.
"Is it real?" Rei couldn't fathom the image of sex and Ami into the same line of thought but those memories were crystal clear and highly suggestive. There was no mistake as to what had been going on. "Did she and I have a relationship, or was that just a fling or something." Rei's voice was confused, lost in the torrent. Memories only ever came back in segments, leaving the rest to be filled in at a later date. It left life feeling muddled.
"It was beyond real." Minako could have started crying right then and there if she hadn't mentally prepared herself for three years. She knew memories were going to surface. Now was the time. "I would have told you, but you say you wanted your own back, so I just figured you wouldn't want to know anything…I'm sorry. It wasn't a fling, it was total and complete fact. You and Ami were...together." Minako stumbled over the word lovers. She couldn't say that word when in regards to Rei and another person.
"I love you Minako." Rei had gained a sense of doubt over the three years that Minako had truly loved her, it seemed as the blond had always held back, but, knowing the reason surly slapped the answer into Rei face. "I'm not with Ami. I'm with you, I love and care about you. There's a difference between now and then. This is now, that was then."
"I know that, I honestly, truly know that." It was hard for Minako to comprehend everything. Having full, unadulterated memories tended to complicate her feelings on different matters, this being one of them. "It just doesn't make things easier on me. I'm like Setsuna, I can speak, but even I have limits. I know our entire past; do you know what that's like? To know one day you would remember and possibly cast me aside. I could have told you, but if I did, what would I have messed up? What trouble would I have caused in doing that? I was afraid of that."
"I know that much already." Rei pulled Minako into a hug. The girl was distraught, and Rei's own emotions weren't exactly much better. "I just never knew you'd know of mine too…not like that anyway…"
"I'm not like Setsuna completely." Minako shook her head, Rei just didn't understand. "I didn't ever see it. I'd never have the power to look back and view it, but you two were together in an announced physical relationship. I knew of it because at that time you two were always with each other and made no attempt to hide facts. I mean, Ami wasn't shouting it from the roof tops or anything. You two just didn't hide it, and at that time, well I was kinda in the denial stage of liking girls, so I never made an attempt to try and come out of any closet. It just, didn't seem right, and I was happy to not be with anyone back then. I had other focuses."
"Then was then." Rei felt Minako cling into the embrace even harder, willing away the tears that had been trying to escape her eyes. "This is now." Rei knew Minako was going to dispute it, but she couldn't help but feel like the past didn't matter anymore. Rei, of course, had been proven wrong countless times, but it seemed like now she hoped she was right. For Minako's sake at the very least. "I know part of my past now, but that doesn't change anything."
"Right now it may not, but what about later. Down the line will you be with me, or will you wake up next to her. I fear that day, that answer that may come to spite me. Past comes back, everything in our past seems to haunt us, and I don't want to face that if I know I love you now. Three years is barely a drop in the hat when you consider a normal lifespan, when you take our lives into account…" This was taking its toll; Rei could see that much easily enough. Minako was torn apart inwardly even more than Rei herself was. "I knew, and I still allowed my heart to love you. Do you know what that's like?"
Minako separated herself from Rei's embrace, sighing heavily, wiling her tears to stop to the best of her ability. "I need to be alone for a while. Keep an eye on her, when she wakes up, she'll likely be just as distraught as you and I if any memories came back." Rei was shell shocked, so mystified by Minako's words. "If she doesn't know then she has a right to be told. You'll need to tell her."
"Oh yeah, and then what do I do!" Rei was having trouble containing her emotions enough to think clearly. "Tell her lies about how I love and care about her? Spout half truths about things I can't answer? What do you want me to do after I spill my guts? Become weak? Crumple to the floor and start crying? What do you want me to do?" Rei's voice was desperate. She could see Minako hurting and her own realizations made Rei feel as if she had committed a very grave sin. She felt unclean, sullied by emotions and actions from the past. "I would be lying Minako. I love you. Not her, but you." Rei wasn't dramatizing it, but she felt as if three years had been torn away simply because of a memory.
"You two will need to decide that together." Minako knew Rei didn't fully get it. "Back then you were happy. Yes times were hard, you shared rocky parts with Ami just like you did with me, but you were just as happy, if not more so." Prolonging the talk would only cause more pain, and that was something no one needed right now. "It wouldn't be fair if she does remember to just outright deny her a chance, it's not fair that I took you away from her possible future. Love isn't fair despite what we may think, and I was stupid to think that you and she would be exempt from your memories."
Rei didn't have a retort. In the back of her mind she knew Minako was right, but another part of her, namely her heart, wanted nothing more than to fight what was being spoken. Then there was a logical side, one that told her if she did speak back a retort then she would hurt Minako even more. It was a catch twenty two. The choices weren't easy ones, the realities weren't simplistic, but that was the life of a Senshi. She allowed Minako to walk away knowing that what the blond had asked for was most likely the best solution. Instead she walked into her room, watching as Makoto gathered her things.
"Work will probably make me work overtime." The tall girl explained. "With all of these stupid things showing up I've skipped out on a lot. If I hope to keep the job I better go back." Her eyes shot to Ami quickly, the girl still hadn't moved. "I'll tell her mother she's staying with you when she comes in for her break." The diner Makoto worked at was near the hospital and it wasn't uncommon for Saeko to pick up a meal before or after work since hospital food often got boring and brining a meal got tiresome. Makoto knew for a fact that the restaurant had to be on Saeko's speed dial considering how often she called to place an order.
Rei nodded and agreed, taking the seat by the bed as Makoto rushed around for a few more minutes before rushing out the door. Ami's cell phone had been placed on the dresser, a missed call sat on the screen display. Rei's cell also displayed a similar message, and the number indicated that it was Usagi. Rei smiled sadly, the choice had been hard to make, but they had sent her to stay with Mamoru. These youma seemed to only be after the others and the last thing they wanted was to place Usagi into indirect danger.
Still, Usagi could feel when one of her protectors got hurt, and that was likely the reason for the cell phones to be called. They only used communicators under extreme emergencies or Senshi meetings since they needed a secure line and a phone simply wouldn't do it. She would have picked up her phone, knowing a call should be in order, but the figure moving slightly out of the corner of her eye gave her direct knowledge that Ami was waking up. She seemed to move around a little more before her eyes actually blurred open, the cool cloth falling to the side of her head.
"Rei?" The question was cut off by the raspy sound. Clearly Ami wasn't ready for speech.
"Not now." The order was soft, but very direct. "You really pulled a few stupid moves out there today and this is what you get."
"Others?" The word was generic but the questions were simple enough to understand.
"They are fine." Rei spoke softly, bringing a water glass to Ami's lips as she helped to lift the girls' head slightly. "Drink this, you'll thank me later."
Ami drank the water and noted that before she could fully swallow Rei slipped a pill between her lips. "Thank you."
"Just rest now." Rei was tense and it was clear that Ami's headache wouldn't go away for a few hours. "Hopefully that pain killer will kick in soon."
Ami dazed in and out of sleep, her head hurting her greatly. If she didn't know better, she'd say she had a concussion; however Senshi healing made that a very minor thing. Flying into hard objects, breaking legs, getting cut, most of those things healed fairly easily if left on their own. It was rare that anyone needed any actual medical treatment unless they sustained the injury in their civilian form. It seemed like if the magic's of a Senshi had been activated during the fight, the body produced more new cells rather quickly. The rapid cell regeneration was what allowed them to heal quickly. Even cells that should not replace themselves were easily regenerated in the body of a Senshi. She knew she would heal over night for something so minor.
Hours passed before she was able to sit up and look around. Light was still unpleasant, even the moon caused her to wince. Rei had fallen asleep in the corner of her bed using the wall as a means of support. She had literally crammed herself onto the corner, trying to make herself as small as possible. Beautiful was a large understatement. Long flowing dark tresses, her eyes closed peacefully even as her body sagged with tension, her toes pressed to the bed as she used her knees as a sort of pillow, one arm holding her balled form together as the other supported her chin further. Rei looked so fragile, and Ami wasn't sure what to do.
The room was unusually cold and that's when she realized she was naked. She called forth her power in a whisper, rousing Rei from her sleep as a blue aura overtook the naked form, covering her body in a garment that after the fight had been torn to shreds. Senshi magic's really were a great tool, looking new after each and every transformation. "How's your head." Rei's voice was tired and stressed.
"It still hurts, but that's to be expected after crashing into a brick wall." Ami answered simplistically. "It's a wonder I'm not worse off, most wouldn't have survived that, but we seem to come out unscathed most of the time." Wincing as she tried to stand, she sat back down; quickly assessing that standing would be a bad idea. "Well, bar having a little soreness anyway."
Rei nodded but didn't speak. Instead she rummaged through her drawers picking out some clothing for her friend. "Here, you don't have to stay like that."
"It's not possible for me to stand. I think I sustained some damage to my bone structure. They aren't broken, but I can say I easily did some damage to the joints in my body, it's really hard to move without pain." She looked at the clothing sitting at the side of the bed, her mind on what had transpired before. "Did anyone else…" She trailed off, not wanting to know.
"Only me, and I didn't know you had been naked before the transform." Rei answered honestly. "I'm sorry, but if it makes you feel any better I didn't look at anything or do anything. I just put you in the bed so no one else would see." Her blush was that of embarrassment. Rei didn't openly ogle her friends and hadn't ever seen them completely exposed.
"It's not like we aren't naked in the middle of the transformation anyway." It was at least a half truth. They did have a moment of betting completely bare; however, the light and element obscured their forms, making it nearly impossible to spot out any direct area. Things that should be covered normally were. "I'll just stay like this; it's not a good idea." Ami's limbs felt heavy, she wouldn't be able to dress herself right at the moment without difficulty.
"Did it come back?" Rei could feel herself tremble as the question left her lips. "The memory."
"Yes." The answer was spoken just as fearfully and Ami wanted nothing more that to disappear into the floor. "Minako will hate me if she finds out."
"She knows." That was all Rei could utter before she saw Ami panic, the girl trying to back herself into the bed frame. "Hate isn't the right word."
Ami noticed Rei didn't move, and soon her mind reeled with more questions. "What is it then?"
"Minako will be hurt, but she won't hate you." Rei's eyes focused ahead of her. "She's known from the start."
"And yet she still…" Ami couldn't form a clear question. "She's always loved you. Right? So this is just fake."
"I don't know." Rei didn't have answers. She didn't even know what she was doing. "You shouldn't have rushed at the youma."
"You should be with Minako right now." The retort was icy, hurt, and somewhat angry. "She needs you."
"She needs me as much as we all need another enemy to fight." Rei bit out. "She told me to look after you…so here I am. Believe it or not she tends to think we can still be, well, doing that." Rei didn't want to say anything referring to the relationship, instead pointing to the action of what they had done instead. "I keep saying the past is the past, that it doesn't matter but she-"
"It does." Ami's voice trembled as she tried to stand, stumbling slightly. "It does matter. You'd never understand. You just don't get it and you never will." Ami shot out quietly but furiously. "It does matter." That was the last thing she said as jumped out of Rei's window, running off haphazardly at Senshi speeds. Rei could only watch for a moment before shock wore off and she kicked onto high gear.
She couldn't let Ami be out there alone.
She raced through the night, her powers of Sailor Mars allowing her the same speed as Ami, the fact that she was more athletic normally only added to the speeds she was able to attain, rushing through the night like a bat out of hell. She could see Ami ahead of her and sped up, she knew she would have to catch the girl, it would be the only way Ami would stop running, and irrationality had taken over Ami's normally calm demeanor. She did catch up, and pulled Ami into her, the abrupt stop causing them to fall backwards onto the ground, Rei rolling to the side on impact.
Ami stood again only to have her arm grasped by Rei, lavender eyes filled with remorse, fearful for the shorter girl out by the buckets full. "You will not run away from me damn you." Rei could barely keep from losing herself. "Not after what we did back then, not after what you just said now. Hell if I let you run away."
Ami didn't have an answer. She was too lost within her own emotions to really realize that a figure was watching both of them, blond tresses hiding her own eyes from view. Ami was startled with Rei's actions and pulled away, running again. She didn't need this, not now, especially not now. Rei watched on as the shorter girl got away again, pushing herself to run as hard as she could, falling in front of a person she hadn't known was following her.
I have no idea what this is, or what it will turn into, but it will likely be a 3 or 4 shot. Please read and review.