New chapter. Hope you guys like it! Some plot stuff and some romance stuff... Please comment and review!
"I've checked out his credentials and they're fake." The small voice wove through the air of the humid room like a breath of fresh air. Four girls sat in different positions of exhaustion in Rei's smoky living room, trying to make sense of what had happened a week ago. It felt like trying to complete a puzzle where more than half the pieces were missing.
What they had put together so far was this: Ami and Makoto had discovered Minako and Rei each passed out in their own homes, sleeping peacefully last Sunday. They were both covered in bruises, but when they were woken up neither of them remembered how they got there. Rei had called Mamoru and Terra clan to find out more information, but for once Terra refused to answer her questions. She and Jadeite were officially on a "break" because of this lack of information, a fact that made Minako more than a little happy. They had continued their search where they left off without much luck.
A week later, Usagi had shown up to school with a stranger, claiming she had gone on vacation and that her friends were worried over nothing.
"Well, he's cute, I'll give her that." Makoto said, scooting a little closer to the fan and retying her hair up. Sticky beads of sweat were clinging to the back of her neck. It was too hot to think and Rei's apartment didn't have air conditioning. This was hell.
"And he's not Mamoru, at least." Minako offered from her spot on the couch. She was sitting upside down, with her head resting on the floor and her feet at the top of the couch. Rei had made her take her shoes off so her toes wiggled in the air slightly.
"At least we know how Mamoru works, though. This boy is a stranger with fake credentials and no records of him anywhere. I'm worried." Ami said from her position on the floor. Her legs were tucked carefully underneath her and her computer was resting on a small table. The fan was whirring loudly but it still felt hot under her fingers.
"We're all worried." Rei put in rubbing her temples slowly. She'd promised the girls she wouldn't smoke while they were around, and it was making her kind of cranky. "We shouldn't have gaps in our memories like that. I've tried asking the sacred Fire, and nothing has helped."
"Not to mention the lack of help from your /friends/." Minako said sarcastically, and then yelped when Rei kicked at her ribs.
"They have their reasons for not telling us what they know. They might not know anything either." Rei growled, but she felt troubled. Jadeite had never kept anything from her before, and yet the night after she'd discovered her memories were missing and called him, he'd avoided all of her questions. Mamoru was even worse, and no amount of yelling was doing anything to solve things so she'd simply quit. She hadn't seen them in 5 days and she especially hadn't seen them since Usagi had come back. She didn't want to. She was angry.
"Have you noticed Usagi gets nervous when he's away?" Minako asked casually, "Like she seems uneasy when he's farther than a few feet from her."
"I thought I was the only one who saw that." Ami said quietly, shutting her computer with a soft click and holding her head. "Girls, there's something I haven't mentioned from my meeting with Mizuki. Things got a little crazy and it slipped my mind until now." Her friends sat up expectantly. "It's about when she disbanded the Yakuza clans after she'd gotten them all together… She said there was evil in the clans. People were changing, something bad was happening and she didn't know how to stop it. Poeple she trusted were becoming different… There was an evil she said she couldn't vanquish, so she disbanded the clans before it got too strong to control… She said she could feel its influence over her friends and even over herself…"
Ami paused, letting her words settle into the thick air of the room. "Now tell me. Does that sound familiar to any of you?"
The room was hot and the air was thick. Breathing was hard anyway, and Ami's statements made it seem almost impossible. Time was standing still and all that could be heard was the ticking of the clock.
"The Silver Millennium." Minako finally said, and the air seemed to come out of everyone with a woosh. Outside, too, something shifted. The sound of a few rain drops on the window came and then a storm. Rei got up to close the windows, struggling with the wind as water blew into her face. Finally she shut it and the room grew quiet again. Rei squeezed out her hair, looking into the rainy street, watching the few people outside run for shelter.
"So the past will just repeat itself whether we want it to or not." Rei sounded tired. She felt an hand on her shoulder and turned to look into bright blue eyes.
"Not if I can help it." Minako said, her voice like steel.
Rei smiled and then felt something from the edge of her consciousness glow suddenly, like a bright star. She blinked and glanced outside, calculating risks.
"I'll be right back. I need to smoke and get some fresh air." Rei murmured and slipped out of the room quietly.
"Do you want us to follow her?" Mako asked Minako blandly. Minako shook her head, looking after Mars with a worried expression.
"No." She said slowly, sitting back down, "I think it's finally we start trusting that we're all trying to do the right thing."
On the other side of town, in a small house full of books and order, 5 men sat comfortably in a small, bare room. There was little to no decoration, nothing to denote anyone lived her at all, except for the pack of cigarettes on the bedside table and the swords leaning against the door frame.
"He's definitely from the Dark Moon clan. There's no doubt in my mind. I've never seen him before, but that was where all this trouble started and that's where it's probably going to end." Zoicite's crisp voice filled the air conditioned room as he ran his hands through Kunzite's hair methodically. He could feel his lover was tense and it made him sad. They had barely survived the beating they'd received, and now their memories had been wiped away. The only one who remembered anything was Nephrite, and he had been taking care of clan business… it wasn't much to go off of.
"Why now?" Nephrite asked quietly, picking at a large scab on his elbow, "Dark Moon has never given us anything other than standard amounts of trouble. There's no reason for them to kidnap Usagi—" He paused and glanced at Mamoru, who had glanced up with an icy glare, "Eh…I mean Tsukino-san."
"Well, something's changed." Jadeite said quietly. He had been more reserved than usual, the cause of not talking to his girlfriend for over a week. There hadn't been any explicit orders from Mamoru not to speak to her, it had been his own decision, but it weighed on him. "The youma haven't been out. That worries me."
"We can't just sit around and do nothing. I think we should—" Kunzite began and then stopped when Mamoru got up.
"I'm going out." The boy said quietly, grabbing his cigarettes and swords before leaving. "Don't follow me." He added.
After he had left the room was momentarily still. "Jadeite." Kunzite said, and Jadeite nodded, getting up and leaving after Mamoru. Don't follow me just meant 'Follow me at a discreet distance', to the Shittennou. They wouldn't leave their King alone. Not at a time like this.
Usagi felt cloudy. She felt like her whole brain was clouded and it felt hard to think. It had been three days since she'd come back from her vacation— her vacation to where? The answer slipped from her mind and she sighed, clutching her head and trying to concentrate on her math problems. It was difficult, with Saphir so close to her. Every time she thought of him her heart jumped and she felt tingles go down her spine.
"I'm tired of homework." Usagi announced, "I'm going outside for a breath of fresh air." She winked and got up, half hoping he would follow her but knowing he probably wouldn't. It was strange. She'd found the man from her dreams, the one with the blue eyes (she'd stopped having those dreams since he'd shown up, a sure sign that it must be him!), and he was so…well he was certainly handsome but he was very…quiet. Saphir rarely said anything, and he smiled even less. Usagi didn't mind, she could fill the silence with chatter (why did she need to? she didn't know, she just did).
Outside was hot and muggy, almost impossible to breath. She felt that familiar anxiety crawl up her spine from being so far from Saphir, and tried to ignore it. God, Usagi, it's only a room away. Get ahold of yourself.
Sometimes she almost felt trapped. She heard thunder rumble in the distance and looked up. It was about to storm. The thunder grew louder and she frowned. Wasn't it supposed to just fade away? But no, it sounded like it was coming from the street. She scanned the alley and found the source, a motorcycle with a thin tall boy with dark hair on it. He skidded to a stop when he noticed she was looking down.
"Oy. Odango!" The voice was rough, but sounded happy. She squinted down and recognized the figure.
"Chiba-san? What are you doing here?" She asked, sounding and feeling startled. Why did his presence seem familiar to her? Once again the answers slipped from her mind.
"Come down. I'll take you somewhere fun." The boy said, revving his engine loudly.
Usagi frowned, "I can't." She called out, glancing back at the house, wondering if Saphir would come out because of the noise. It didn't seem like he would.
"Fine. I'll come up then." He turned his motorcycle off and took his helmet off.
"Wait, you can't— you can't just invite yourself up here." Usagi squeaked, watching as he stomped up the stairs easily. And then he was right there, in front of her. He was a wolf, and she was nothing but a rabbit, cowering against the corner of her balcony.
"Sorry." He apologized easily, staring at her, causing her breath to quicken. She felt sweat break out on the back of her neck. Why couldn't she think? She just— she wanted to remember— she just wanted to— "Are you okay? You got sick at school the other day."
The voice interrupted her thoughts and she let out a breath she hadn't realized she'd been holding. "Ah. Yeah I'm okay. I'm fine." She said lamely, looking away and out into the street. Fine. If he wanted to be here that was fine. She wasn't going to stop him but she certainly wouldn't look at him. He slid closer to her and leaned out to look in the same direction, taking out a cigarette and lighting it. He smelled like leather.
"Is your boyfriend here?" The boy next to her asked casually, blowing smoke into the air. She wrinkled her nose.
"That's gross." She muttered and then sighed. "Yeah. He's here." Of course he's here.
"That's too bad." Mamoru said softly. She looked him over, studying his expression. He seemed serene, calm, as if his heart had stilled for a moment, now that he was up here. he caught her looking at him and glanced over with those deep blue eyes of his, so different then Saphir's. Saphir's seemed like the deep blue of a lake, but Mamoru's held oceans and worlds. All storming for her.
What? She quickly erased the thought, turning bright prink and clutching onto the handrails.
"Why are you here?" She struggled to make conversation with this near stranger, struggled to keep her mind away from his eyes, from his scent. Lightning flashed in the distance.
"I like being around you." Mamoru answered with a small smile. "I feel better when I can see you."
She glanced at him, looking for the mocking expression he usually wore (how did she know he usually wore that?) and then frowned, looking away. "I have someone." The boy next to her grunted. "Why are you telling me this anyway." She said flatly.
"Because I love you." He said simply.
"What? Don't be ridiculous." Usagi growled. "You don't even know me."
"Don't I?" Mamoru said with a laugh. Then his face turned serious and he had caught her in his eyes again. Her breath came out in small puffs. "I'm tired of the games, Usa. I can't do it anymore. I thought I could. I thought maybe I might do it, for you…for us… I don't want the past to repeat either…"
"Chiba-san what—?" He stopped her with a bitter laugh and threw his cigarette out. He looked away from her then, so he wouldn't
"Minako won't believe this but I really tried. I can't. You pull me in like the moon pulls the ocean, Usa." He laughed again and put his face in his hands. "I can't stay away from you." His knuckles were white. Thunder rumbled in the distance and then another flash of lightning lit up his face.
"You're scaring me." Her voice cracked as she spoke and she winced when he looked over sharply. His expression softened.
"I'm sorry. I'm sorry." he whispered, reaching out to take her hand in his larger one. She let him hold it, afraid, terrified of what might happen next.
The first drop of rain fell.
The storm began, but they didn't move. He slowly moved her hand up to his mouth and touched her finger tips with his lips.
"Usagi." The way he said it sounded like a prayer, and it sounded like pleading. He was begging her for something, asking her for permission. Without knowing why, tears jumped to her eyes and slid down her pale cheeks. He wouldn't let her escape without an answer, but she didn't know what he wanted.
"Okay." She said, feeling her whole body tremble. He moved towards her slowly, ever so slowly and before she knew it his face was inches from hers. His hands here on her back, holding her steady although her knees felt like they were about to give out. Her hands were on his shirt front, weakly closed on the fabric of his clothing. Her mind was a complete blank. The wind was spattering both of them with rain and she wouldn't have noticed if someone had dumped a whole bucket of water on her. He paused, two inches from her face. Without even realizing it, she crossed the distance herself.
What happened next was hard to describe.
Her heart felt like it expanded to three times its normal size. Her entire body was vibrating and gods, she felt like she was glowing. if she had opened her eyes she might have realized that she /was/ glowing. A soft pink engulfed the two figures on the balcony for just a moment before vanishing, and a small crescent moon briefly appeared on Usagi's forehead before flickering away.
Now that they had started kissing, Usagi might have wondered how she could ever stop. Because a few seconds later he was kissing her eyelids and kissing her tears and her ears and then back to her mouth and her neck. Her hands were holding on to him for dear life, kissing him back just as passionately, barely able to comprehend the sensations in her body. This might have continued for an inappropriate amount of time had Usagi not felt a small sharp pain on her ankle. She broke away, confused and looked down to see Luna, staring up at her expectantly and then looking over at the door, which was cracked open. Usagi gasped and backed away.
"Ohmygod." Her eyes were filling again and then she was crying. She could think clearly but it hurt. Mamoru was at her side at once, holding her, stroking her hair.
"I'm sorry, Usagi I'm sorry I shouldn't have— Was it something I— Do you want me to leave?" He sounded so unsure, and he was holding her so tenderly that Usagi only cried harder.
Something was wrong. Something was wrong inside of her! She couldn't remember.
"I think I'm going crazy, Mamoru. I can't…I can't remember how I met Saphir and I keep— I was having all these dreams—" She murmured through her tears. He was kissing her hair again, almost as if he couldn't stop himself, and she let him, curling herself up in his warm presence.
"Come with me. Let's get out of here—"
"Mamoru I can't— I feel— I feel sick when I leave—" Usagi shuddered just at the thought of stepping away from Saphir. She had felt violently ill the last time. Maybe that's what soul bonds were about? But if soul bonds were so strong why hadn't she felt like she did when kissing Mamoru.
Luna meowed from beneath her, and the door cracked open a little more. Usagi jumped away from Mamoru a second before Saphir came through. Mamoru stiffened and his fists clenched. There was murder in his eyes.
Usagi's mind clouded again and she clutched her head.
"Who's this?" Saphir asked quietly, his faced resigned.
"Um…this is…um…chiba-san from my math class…" Usagi mumbled, feeling slower and more lethargic.
"Hm. Don't you think you should come inside now? You'll catch a cold. You're all wet."
"MAMORU!" The voice came from down below and all three inhabitants of the balcony looked down into the rain, where a single headlight was illuminating the street. It was Rei. "MAMORU I NEED TO TALK TO YOU RIGHT NOW!"
"Rei?" Usagi asked, trying to think through the confusion in her brain, the lethargy in her limbs, "What's wrong? Come inside!"
"NO!TELL CHIBA TO COME DOWNSTAIRS!"
"Usagi come inside."
"SHUT. SHUT UP! ALL OF YOU!" The blonde screeched and glared at the boys on her balcony. "Mamoru go down and see Rei. I- I need to go to bed anyway. I'll...see you at school." She willed her face not to turn red as she marched back in the house. Saphir followed quietly, not even bothering to spare a glance of contempt towards Mamoru before shutting the door.
Mamoru glared downstairs.
"What the hell do you want?" He spat, blue eyes meeting violet ones.
"We're overdue for a long talk, Chiba." Rei yelled, letting the rain carry her voice.
He sighed and rubbed his head, trying to ignore the flashes of heat he would feel in different areas of his body when he thought of her. And she was inside with that man- but no. Rei was right. She wouldn't have come unless this was important. He jumped over the balcony and landed on his feet. Dusting himself off he walked through the rain and hopped on to the back of her motorcycle. He knew she wouldn't want him to take his. The engine started and they were off.