Alright, the foreward: Please Save My Earth does not belong to me. If it did, it would be even more overdramatic than it already is (I say that with the utmost affection. It's so girly it's great.)

I heard somewhere that the form of abuse Shion visited on Mokuran was a rape; this is the interpretation I've taken for this fic. In this instance, the rape took place after Gyokuran, Shusuren and Hiragi were dead and Enju was dying; in other words, when only Shion, Shukaido and Mokuran were alive and alert.

This takes place after Rin has told Haruhiko he wants him to seduce Alice to get her keyword. Think of it as what they might say after they went to their respective homes.

A reminder: Rin looks a lot like Shukaido, and Haruhiko looks like Shion. This fic won't make sense if you don't remember that.

Rate PG-13 for adult themes, mention of rape.

***************

I'm looking in the mirror right now, and do you know what I see? I see the man who made the last years of my life a living nightmare, the man who now resides in my body and has not yet been punished for his crimes.

In other words, I see you, my dear friend Shukaido.

This body, this child's body, it glares at me with all the hatred you deserve. I imagine this is what you must have looked like as a child. I wish that child had died long ago.

It's not so terrible to wish a child dead, is it? I'll bet you wish I had died the first time I was shot at. Occasionally I wish that myself. If I had, I could have been with my parents again, and even though I don't remember them at all, they were my parents, right?

And parents have to love their children, right?

Why am I asking you? You, who cannot possibly understand the nature and character of love? If you did, you would have accepted that Mokuran was not, is not and shall never be yours. You would have left us in peace.

I spit, and the saliva trails down my face in the mirror. You disgust me. How Sarjalim could bear to allow someone like you to be born--and reborn-- escapes me. You, you husk of a man, no, not even that, you snake, you animal! She was mine! And you couldn't handle that, so you punished me for it. Brat. Monster.

Nine years, Shukaido. Nine years you left me there, on that airless void, that accursed graveyard. Corpses are not good company, but sometimes I'd talk to them, and pretend they were talking back to me. I think Mokuran actually was; the plants still loved her, caressed her even in death.

I never talked to you, though. I threw your body out the airlock on the day I realized your trickery. You're out there, floating on the surface of the moon, as alone as I was.

It's not enough. I want you to *hurt*. I want to wring the life out of each and every person you love. I want you at my feet, begging for them in vain. I want to be there when your mind finally shatters and a giggle flies out of your throat and you look around to see who it was that laughed.

Then you'll laugh again, and I'll be laughing too.

I'll save Alice for myself, though. She'll go to your funeral and weep for her former lover. She'll say her dear Shion is dead, he killed himself and I'll never see him again and oh God Rin what should I do?

But her dear Shion will be the one holding her. He'll be the one that puts her back together. She won't know that, though. To her I'll be Shukaido, the gentle doctor who tried and failed to help her when she was raped by Shion.

Yes, I can admit my guilt now. I raped Mokuran. She was mine, and I claimed her, and I regret every moment of it. But those nine years were purgatory for me. They have expiated my crime. You, on the other hand...You have yet to pay. You will, and soon.

This will save your soul. My crimes and yours will both be erased the instant you slit your wrists.

You don't need to worry about what will happen to Mokuran after you're gone. Shion will never hurt her again. He'll be dead, for good this time. You'll finally have succeeded in protecting her from him.

She'll love your memory. Isn't that a comforting thought?

The passwords first, though. You'll get hers for me, and I'll get the others', and I'll destroy the place that brought us all only misery. You have until then to make your peace with Sarjalim. After that, you are gone. Nothing. Slightly more than you are now. See? I'm doing you a favor. You won't have to live with yourself anymore.

Do you know what it's like to look in the mirror and see the reflection of someone you hate? I do.

The glass shatters, spilling pieces of you all over the floor.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

I'm looking in the mirror right now, and do you know what I see? I see the man who abused the only woman I have ever loved, the man who is now using my guilt to further his own designs.

You, Shion. That's who I see.

What you're offering me is worthless. You'll never let her go. You can't; the instant she leaves you is the instant you shatter.

I know what you're up to. You want to humiliate me, hurt me in every way possible, and you want to hurt her, too, for forgetting about you. You pathetic little brat.

You ask me how I can live with what I've done to you; I ask you how you can live with what you've done to her. I ask myself how Sarjalim could have allowed a less than worthless thing such as yourself to be born--and reborn- -and win the love of one of her most precious children.

You must have been a saint before you were Shion, to deserve such a gift. You certainly don't deserve it now.

Do you know why I pursued her so ardently? I knew you would hurt her, claim her when she was not meant to be claimed. You had the eyes of an animal. You could only reign in your instincts for so long, and I hoped to save her from you before that control snapped. I couldn't, though. I was too late.

I should never have left you alone with her, in those desperate last days.

I had other duties, though; Enju was dying, and I couldn't leave her. I'd promised Shusuren I wouldn't, and that was the only day in seven years Mokuran placed second. It was Enju who told me there was something wrong, I should go check on her, and when I came back Enju was dead. Too late, twice. But when I was treating Mokuran for her injuries, asking her if she wanted you locked away, do you know what she said to me?

She said, "It's alright, Shukaido. Shion and I are already married."

She *loved* you, Shion.

I never had a chance, did I? She never even saw my love for what it was; her eyes were always turned towards you. She loved you, and she loves you now and will continue to love you until...I don't know when. All I know is that I love her, have always loved her. That's why I kept you alive; I had to keep you away from her, I had to keep you from hurting her again. I was hoping to put enough time between you that you'd never meet.

Even if you did the same in this life as you did in the last, though, I think she'd go on loving you. She's like Sarjalim herself, infinitely patient and forgiving.

It shames me. Whenever I look at you, I think to myself that there must be something worth saving in you, to have been given a gift so precious. And I...I tell myself I had to protect her, but that wasn't all of it. I hated you because you weren't me. Every time I look at you now, that's what I think. I think about my deathwish: to know someday that your mind was shattering. And I think: Sarjalim should have killed both of us in the womb.

I won't ever lay so much as an eye on Alice. To be greeted, loved, *forgiven*...It would be more than I could bear.

There's one thing that puzzles me. I know why I took on your appearance. I wanted to be in your place, be the one Mokuran loved. You claimed it was because I wanted to be the one who abused her. Well, here's a question for you:

Why do you look like me, Shion?

I thought you hated me. Why have you taken my place, unless...

You mean to kill us both, don't you. My soul, your memory. That's why you want me to seduce her. When you kill me, you'll take on my role, comfort her tears and in the end she'll love you even more. You'll be free of the taint of your former life.

You're a snake, Shion. A monster.

And you frighten me.

You were right, you know. I didn't want to acknowledge it, still don't, but beneath all of Shukaido's piety, all his reverence, his gentle manner, he looked at Mokuran the same way you did. Is that why you hate me so much? Because you saw the animal in me? Sometimes I wonder whether you weren't the better man after all; you, at least, were honest, with yourself and with her. That was something I wasn't strong enough to be.

I have another chance now.

If I had been in your place...I would have raped her, too. I would have shown my true nature, and you would have made me suffer for it. I would have died hating you.

I would be doing this to me right now.

Tears run down my face in the mirror. All of it: I would have mirrored your actions perfectly, as if you and I were twisted reflections of each other.

It scares me, Shion. It terrifies me.

That I look in the mirror and see myself; it terrifies me.

**************

I didn't like this fic as much as I liked my last PSME one. It's short, kind of confusing, and features characters who are far from being my favorites. However, I still like it a great deal; if I didn't, it would be in my Recycle Bin right now instead of on the internet. I'm not as fond of it as I could be, but I don't think I can make it any better than this.

Actually, I never thought I'd write anything about these two characters. I never liked Shion or Shukaido all that much, because they're bastards. Sympathetic bastards, to be sure, but bastards all the same. I mean, Shion "abused" Mokuran (this can be taken in many different ways), and if there's one kind of character that raises my hackles it's an abuser. And Shukaido thought it was within his rights to condemn a fellow human being (well...) to a situation which would almost certainly result in his eventual insanity. So much for the good doctor. Sure, they each had reasons for what they did, but does that change the facts that Mokuran was hurt so deeply she didn't want to remember who she was and that Shion is now insane? No, it doesn't. Thus, I don't like Shion and Shukaido nearly as much as the other characters. To tell the truth, though, I feel sorry for Rin and Haruhiko, because they're the one's suffering for their previous incarnation's mistakes.

Because I don't like these characters too much, I'm nervous that I've made them OOC accidentally. If I have, I'm very sorry. Shion's plan is my own creation (having never read the manga, I have no idea whether I'm accidentally plagiarizing or not). It always struck as odd that he'd come back as a Shukaido look-alike. I mean, it's obvious why Haruhiko looks like Shion, but it's not like there aren't an infinite number of combinations of features that Shion could have wished for that would have made him not look like Shukaido. Why look like your worst enemy unless you have a plan that requires it? Thus, Shion has a plan that he came up with during the nine years he spent in hell. What else are you going to do on a dead moon base? Play soccer with the dust bunnies?

The title of this fic comes from a poem I remember from way back when I was in Girl Scouts: "Twist me and turn me and show me the elf/I look in the water and see myself." This poem popped into my head one day and would not leave me alone. So I wondered how I'd get rid of it, and then I thought, "Hey, this would fit the whole Shion/Shukaido relationship, wouldn't it? I mean, they look like each other's past lives, and they hate each other, and what could be worse than looking in the mirror and seeing someone you hate?" Then I wrote this fic, and the damn thing disappeared. This is good. I hated Girl Scouts.

Ack. I'll shut up before the end notes get to be longer than the actual fic.