Disclaimer: I was glad to be able to borrow the characters for a bit, and the poem as well. I hope you enjoy!

Two bodies face to face
Are two stars
Falling in an empty sky.


There was a place tucked into a small fold of the valley that spent most of the year unnoticed. It was a fairly unremarkable part of the forest, just a handful of short trees and a tumble of gray granite that climbed upward into the mountains. There were certainly more spectacular places.

Except in autumn.

Minako sat atop one of the tall boulders, watching the sun set fire to this small corner of the forest. The trees seemed taller, somehow; thick crowns ablaze in reds and golds drew the eye away from the green giants surrounding them.

Minako's eyes were distant, fixed, the line of her mouth neither a smile or a frown. Her mind was so full it may as well have been blank and the harder she tried to think, the more she found her attention inexorably drawn to the leaves drifting around her. Autumn whispered to the trees, nudging them gently, telling them it was time to shed their proud mantle of gold and copper and surrender themselves to the scrubbing winter would give them in preparation for Spring's renewal.

A shuffling sound below her drew her gaze. Completely oblivious to her, two lovers walked hand in hand along an old cart track that wound beneath the canopy, their feet shifting through the litter. No words passed between them, or perhaps they were simply too quiet to hear. They paused beneath one of the trees and Ami pointed up into the canopy with her free hand. Makoto smiled at her and reached up into the branches, touching first one leaf, and then another. Ami nodded and Makoto pulled down one of the rusty leaves, offering it to her. Ami smiled and wrapped her hands around Makoto's, holding them together. She took the leaf and tucked it in a journal she had stowed in her back pocket.

Makoto reached a hand out to finger through Ami's hair, curving her hand around her ear and rubbing it slowly between her thumb and forefinger. They stood face to face, close, the faint clouds of their breath mingling in the air between them. Ami's face colored under the attention, but she smiled when Makoto leaned in to kiss her. After they pulled away Makoto took the woolen hat from her head and fixed it snugly around Ami's ears. And still without a word spoken between them, they continued on their way beneath the foliage with fingers laced.

Minako was unaware she had stopped breathing until the cold air stung sharply in her lungs. After the couple passed well beyond her view she reached into her pocket and pulled out a token: half-woven strips of cloth and slender cuttings of lavender. Her weary features broke into a small smile, and she tucked it back into her skirts. Maybe not now, maybe not for some time. But she would hold onto this wish she would someday make.