Author's Note: This story was an idea in my head for so long. It takes place after Nagisa's graduation from Miater. My thanks to smiggers for betaing this story for me.
Disclaimer: I do not own Strawberry Panic!, or the characters. I am simply borrowing them. (Though I wouldn't mind owning Shizuma! .)
'Well, it's almost time to leave this place,' Nagisa thought sadly, as she sat on the edge of the stone bridge which lead to the Library. Unlike most of the students who had graduated alongside her, Nagisa was quite frankly, depressed. She didn't want to step out into the real world; she didn't feel like she was ready for it, neither did she want to leave behind the memories from her stay in Saint Miator.
'Why did everything have to go so fast?' Nagisa pondered, her lilac colored eyes staring into her reflection. The water's surface was rippling, making her reflection somewhat blurry from the gentle motion. She had grown considerably within the last two years, both physically and mentally.
When she had first arrived at Miator, her hair had been of shoulder-length, now it streamed down the length of her back. Her facial traits then could be described as childish and innocent, now those naïve features were replaced with the attributes intelligence and maturity. She had grown taller as well and now stood at well over five feet and seven inches.
'I can barely recognize myself,' Nagisa thought bitterly, as she looked away from her reflection, and out over the horizon.
"You should be with the others and enjoying your graduation party," A familiar voice called out softly to her. "Why are you here by yourself?"
Chills raced up the redhead's spine, as she recognized the voice's owner. The look of shock overcame Nagisa's face, whilst various thoughts fluttered about her mind. 'What is she doing here?'
Unsure of how to respond to the silver haired woman behind her, Nagisa gave a casual shrug, figuring it would best if she didn't turn to look at the woman behind her. 'She's probably smirking, and thinking I'll be her fool once more,' Nagisa thought bitterly, as she felt the muscles in her body tensing.
"You've grown up so much, Nagisa," Shizuma commented, as she took a seat next to the redhead. "It's hard to believe that you are my little Nagisa."
Nagisa brows furrowed slightly, as she glanced at the silver haired woman beside her. The redhead sighed, finally acknowledging Shizuma's presence, "What do you want from me, Shizuma?"
"What do I want from you?" Shizuma responded in a playful tone, taking a moment to enjoy the angry flush which adorned the younger woman's cheeks. 'She responding to me still,' Shizuma thought, as hope rekindled within her heart. "Let's see... I want my Nagisa back."
A heavy sigh escaped from Nagisa's lips, as she rolled her lilac colored eyes. 'Why are you letting her get under your skin so easily?' The redhead chided herself inwardly, as she conjured up a cocky response, "And what makes you think I want you?"
Nagisa groaned inwardly as she watched a wicked grin spread across the face of her former-lover. A strong arm soon found its way around Nagisa's slim waist, as the taller woman leaned towards her. Hot breath tickled the redhead's flesh, as a husky voice cooed into her ear, "Do you really want me to prove it to you, my little Nagisa?"
The redhead growled in frustration, as she began to push the silver-haired beauty away, trying desperately to put some distance between herself and the woman who had hurt her so much in the past. Her attempts were in vain though. As soon as she started to struggle, Shizuma's other arm came about to firmly embrace Nagisa's slender form. It wasn't long before Nagisa found herself pressed against the voluptuous figure of the former-Etoile.
Lilac eyes stung with tears, as Nagisa felt the light pressure of Shizuma's lips against her forehead. The tears didn't spill, not until Nagisa heard the older woman whispering to her in a voice filled with emotions. "I'm sorry, Nagisa. Please... I don't deserve it, but please forgive me."
A choked sob escaped from her throat, her shoulders shaking as she attempted to stop her tears. 'Why does this always happen to me? Just when I'm almost over her, she comes waltzing back into my life, and captures me again. This isn't fair.'
Shizuma's embrace tightened as she held the crying figure within her arms, silently praying for a second chance, "Nagisa... I'll do whatever I can to make it up to you. Just give me another chance."
Nagisa didn't respond immediately, a hand shakily wiping away the fallen tears. It took a moment for the redhead to regain her composure before looking up to meet the intense gaze. Shock flitted across her features, as she recognized the look of sincerity within the other's eyes.
Although what surprised her most, was the love she found within the sienna colored orbs. 'How is it possible?' Nagisa wondered. 'That she could put me through hell for so long, and yet still feel this way?'
"I can't give you an answer right now," Nagisa finally whispered. "I need time to think about this... to make the right decision for myself."
Shizuma nodded slightly, and contented herself with enjoying the feel of having the redhead in her arms once more. 'I've missed this...' Shizuma thought, as she held the redhead tighter. 'I didn't think I would be able to hold her again.'
"I have to get back," Nagisa said then, stirring the silver-haired beauty from her thoughts. "I still need to pack, and be ready to leave."
"Where are you going tomorrow?" Shizuma asked, as she brushed a few strands of hair away from Nagisa's eyes. "Please, tell me."
"I'm going to stay with Tamao-chan until I can find a place of my own," Nagisa replied while shifting out of Shizuma's embrace. The faint traces of a blush had made it's appearance onto the redhead's tear stained cheeks.
"No," Shizuma said suddenly, as she gripped hold of Nagisa's left arm. "Stay with me. I have enough space, and you won't be imposing."
"But," Nagisa started quickly, however before she could continue her argument, she was interrupted by Shizuma.
"No buts," Shizuma replied sternly, as her sienna colored eyes stared into those of lilac. "You can stay with me. Consider it as a chance for me to make amends for everything that I've done to you."
Shizuma then released her hold of Nagisa's arm, and gracefully stood up from the bridge.
"I'll take my leave for now, my little Nagisa," Shizuma murmured, as she leaned forward and placed a gentle kiss upon the top of Nagisa's forehead. "But I will be seeing you tomorrow."
'My god, that woman hasn't changed a single bit,' Nagisa thought as she watched her former-lover walk out of sight. The redhead soon found herself wondering what it was she had just gotten herself into, but for some reason, she couldn't help but think that Shizuma already knew her answer. 'Oh god, only she could do this to me.'
Ten Minutes Later,
"So how did it go?" Miyuki's voice called out from the small cellphone in which Shizuma held to her ear.
"There's hope," Shizuma answered, her eyes twinkling with delight. "It was just as you said it would be, but there's more."
"More such as?" Miyuki asked hesitantly. "Be careful, Shizuma, any impulsive moves here, and you'll lose her for good."
"I know," Shizuma murmured, glancing towards the sky. "But I told her to move in with me."
"You what?" Miyuki demanded in an incredulous voice. "How did she take it?"
"She didn't have a chance to," Shizuma responded with a chuckle. "I told her she would, and that I would see her tomorrow."
"You know there would be payback for that, right?" Miyuki sighed. "God, I told you not to be so reckless."
"I didn't want her to move in with Suzumi-san," Shizuma explained.
"Shizuma, don't be so dense!" Miyuki snorted. "Suzumi-san doesn't stand a chance with Nagisa. From what I've heard from Amane – the last time those two tried anything, it didn't work."
"Th-they tried!?" Shizuma sputtered indignantly.
"Shizuma, stop jumping to conclusions," Miyuki scolded. "It didn't work, as I said."
"How dare Suzumi-san touch my Nagisa?" Shizuma demanded, as she began working herself up into a ranting mood.
"My dear god, woman," Miyuki groaned. "You're such a pain in my ass."
"And you're such a good friend," Shizuma cooed, as she put aside her ranting for later.
Author's Footnote: In the next part of this story, I'll write on what exactly happened between Nagisa/Shizuma in the past. Thanks for reading, please review.