AN: I do not own Sailor Moon! First and last time I say this!
This is where I will put all my one-shots and drabbles involving the senshi/shitennou and usage/mamoru! Each story will have a different rating, so please read that before venturing into the story in case you get worried about those!
This is T bordering on M because of character deaths. Nothing too graphic though, promise!
I keep going to the river to pray
'Cause I need something that can wash all the pain
And at most I'm sleeping all these demons away
But your ghost, the ghost of you
It keeps me awake – "Ghost" by Ella Henderson
The soft crunch of the leaves beneath her feet was the only sound she heard as she walked aimlessly. It was a cold, bitter day in January. This time around she had the good sense to bundle up, unlike last time. She had wandered around, lost in thought, and only noticed the sting of the cold when someone had broken her musings, asking her if she was ok. They must have thought her insane, walking around in the snow without a coat.
She kept walking now, moving almost mechanically as her thoughts swirled around her. Her breath came out in little white puffs and she smiled bitterly. Even out here, she could get no reprieve from him. Everywhere she looked, she was reminded of him. She was surprised to feel the sting of something cold and wet on her cheeks. At first she thought it had started to snow, but when she brought her gloved hands up she saw them flecked with wetness. Her breath caught in her throat as she realized she'd been crying. The tears started flowing freely then, making her vision blurry as she trotted along. She didn't even bother wiping them away as she had no energy to bother with them.
The wind picked up then, as if gliding her a certain way, it's persistent push egging her forward. She barely felt the biting cold now, the numbness she felt inside blocking anything else out. Today had been one of those days- the harder ones where her body moved on autopilot. She had woken up around 4:20 from a nightmare that hadn't been a nightmare at all, just a horrible memory of a life before.
When the memories of the Silver Millennium began to surface for all of them (minus Minako, who had gone through it all awhile back) the emotions that came with them had been confusing. All of them had dealt with it differently. Rei had shut everyone out, saying she was busy running the shrine. Makoto had been prone to outbursts. It'd turned into a guessing game to see if she was going to burst into tears or angrily shout until her voice became too hoarse to continue. As for herself, she wasn't quite sure she hadn't gone insane. She tried throwing herself at her schoolwork, but ended up turning into a zombie. Sleepless nights had been her friend, and they still were, to some extent, even after a year had passed. As were days like today- random wanderings around town, in the bitter cold to numb herself from it all.
No one should have to relive their own death, especially at the hands of the one you once loved. She stopped abruptly, her breathing becoming uneven as the memories threatened to overwhelm her. She crouched low, closing her eyes tightly as if to ward off the pain. She felt a panic attack bubbling at the surface. But today, today she would not let it win. Taking a shaky breath, she opened her eyes slowly. Her navy blue eyes focused on a brittle leaf a few inches away. She took a bigger breath this time, gulping it in like it was her only lifeline. Her lungs complained as the cold air assaulted them, but the twisted person inside of her enjoyed it. It meant she was still alive, still breathing. She stayed like that for a little while, her breathing finally returning to normal.
She wasn't sure when she stood up, but she did. She glanced at a tree in passing, but her eyes caught on the lone leaf. The tree had been stripped of its leaves, scattered all around its base, the crisp brown ones dancing slowly with the wind. But her eyes had remained on the single green leaf, barely holding on to the branch. Leaf green eyes surrounded by strawberry blonde curls flashed in her mind. She tore her eyes away from the leaf and continued to walk.
The first memory she had of him had trickled in one day when it had begun to rain while she'd been walking to her car. She had stood their, soaking wet while her mind replayed her first encounter with the youngest shitennou. It had been her night to watch Princess Serenity. She had chased the young monarch all the way to the planet Terra, as it was known back then. Sailor Venus had warned her about the princess's flightiness and her ability to suddenly disappear but she hadn't believed it until she had seen it with her own eyes.
She had teleported into some type of rose garden, with the princess nowhere in sight. She had paused in her search from the shock of the multitude of vegetation, the feel of the soft wind, the intoxicating scents of the flowers surrounding her, and the sheer colors shocking her senses. She had studied Terra, but she hadn't believed the stories. The Moon Kingdom was beautiful in it's own right, but it was barren of all these things. The air stood still there, nothing like the breeze that tickled her skin and ruffled up her hair. White surrounded the Moon Kingdom, bleached of any color or vegetation. Mercury had been similar, but where the moon had been white from dust, stone, and lack of sustainable life outside of the Lunarians, Mercury had been covered in snow and ice. Not a lot grew in those subzero temperatures, and the things that did paled in comparison to what Terra had.
Mercury had two seasons, winter and summer. Mercury's summers melted the ice and snow, leaving a planet covered almost all in water. Her people had lived in the highest of mountains because of these two extremes. Her musings had been interrupted by a loud, grumbling noise coming from Terra's heavens. She had jumped, a small squeak escaping her lips as she uneasily glanced upwards.
"Don't be afraid, it's only thunder. Have you never heard it before?" Came a cautious, male voice to the left of her. She immediately dropped to a defensive position, studying the man in front of her. He had on a fern colored military coat with gray trimmings, gray breeches, and black boots. Billowing behind him was a port and white colored cape. A sheathed sword was visible on his left hip. His military garb, coupled with the way he held himself, meant he was an important soldier. By the looks of it, he belonged to the royal guard.
She had heard of thunder from Sailor Jupiter, whose home planet was famous for it, but she had never experienced it first hand. "Who are you?" She asked, ignoring his question all together.
His leaf green eyes danced with mirth. "If I'm not mistaken, it is you who is trespassing in the prince's private gardens. Therefore, you have no right in demanding anything." She would've been taken aback by his rude tone if not for the smile playing at his lips.
She was going to reprimand Princess Serenity if she ever caught her! Not only had she broken her mother's cardinal rule of not visiting Terra, but she'd also been running around their royalty's palace. Not wanting to start a war out of a simple misunderstanding, she eased out of her defensive position. "I'm sorry. It seems I have stumbled upon this place by mistake."
"Not likely. One doesn't simply stumble upon this place." He stood at ease, with his arms folded across his chest. He took in her appearance, his eyes resting on her exposed legs. She felt her whole face heat up. When he finally locked eyes with her again, her whole body felt flushed. "You're obviously not from here. Women tend not to wear outfits like those here. Shame, really." He grinned at her.
She narrowed her eyes at him. She wasn't sure if she could trust him. She needed to slip past him, find her princess, and get out of here before they caused any more trouble. "I seemed to have misplaced something, so I'll be on my way now." She tried moving past him but he blocked her path.
"Ah, let's not make this more difficult than it has to be. I can easily call for the guards and you'll be arrested and thrown in the dungeons. I assume that's something you wouldn't want happening." His features remained soft, but his voice held a hint of steel behind it. "I know you're one of those senshi's that protects the Lunar princess."
She tried not to show the surprise that she felt from his words. Apparently she hadn't done a good job because he smiled smugly at her. Her hands twitched as she readied her attack. He was a threat to her princess and she needed to get rid of him quickly. With a swift flick of her wrist, she sent an ice dagger towards the strawberry blonde man. He narrowly dodged her attack, landing on his butt in his haste to get away from the flying projectile.
She ignored his cries of outrage and ran, trying to put some distance between them two. She heard him giving chase and took a sharp right, hopping to get lost in the sea of flowers. She turned around to see if she lost her would be capture and saw him perform an impressive hurdle over the bushes in his path. She saw him pull something glittery out of an inside pocket and quickly threw herself to the ground. She heard the knife whizzing past her a second later. She hastily scrambled up and took off again. She hadn't gotten very far when she felt something wrap around her right ankle and then her legs flew from underneath her. She fell hard to the ground, a little oof escaping her lips. Her hands stung from the impact, but better her hands than her face.
She felt large hands grab her shoulders roughly and turn her upwards. She tried fighting him but stopped abruptly as soon as she felt him straddle her. Her eyebrows shot up in surprise and her cheeks flushed crimson at the indecent position he had her in. Her mind barely registered how he grabbed both her wrists and it took her another second to realize he'd imprisoned her with something. Her eyes flitted to the object, what looked like crystal shackles, and then back to his arrogant face.
She had the sudden urge to wipe the smirk off his face. "I don't need my hands to best you." She tried conjuring up another icicle, but nothing formed in the air.
The young man above her let a guffaw of a laugh escape his lips. "No, I imagine you don't. But these little beauties here prevent you from doing any magick." He tapped the crystalized shackles, smug smile still in place. "My own invention, of course." His chest puffed out in pride and he fleetingly reminded her of a preening peacock, an image that made her snort. She'd studied them in one of her Terran classes. Good thing too, because this man seemed to be displaying a copious amount of self-satisfaction.
He seemed to deflate a little at her lack of interest but recovered quickly. "Now, if you don't tell me what you are doing here, I will be forced to charge you with attempt of murder. Penalty of that is death." The playfulness had left his eyes, replaced by calculating coldness.
She felt like she had no other option but to tell him the truth. "You were right, I am a senshi, protector of Princess Serenity. It seems my charge has escaped to your planet. I merely followed her to return her to her home. We meant no harm to your kingdom."
She watched as his brows furrowed in thought. Finally, a sigh escaped his lips. He deftly moved off of her and easily picked her up off the ground. He made no move to remove the shackles from her wrist though. "Seems Kunzite was right," he seemed to say to himself, as if forgetting she was there at all. "If that's the case…" he trailed off, deliberating with himself. "Let's make a deal," he finally said. "I'll take those off if you promise to not try to kill me again and to forget that I made an attempt at your life as well. Wouldn't want the wraith of the whole galaxy on me." He winked at her.
"I promise," she said. He gave her a beautiful smile then, one that left her a little stunned. He snapped and the shackles disappeared. She looked at him in confusion. Nowhere in her reports about Terra did it say their people could also use magick. She looked at him a little warily. If he noticed, he ignored it.
"Might as well introduce one another, since we'll be working closely together. I'm Lord Zoicite, general to Prince Endymion." He bowed low to her, the playful smirk again on his lips.
"I beg your pardon?" She said, surprised at his words.
His smile faltered. He seemed to hesitate a little before answering, "Lord Zoicite, general of the north. I'm one of Prince Endymion's shitennou."
"Yes, I understood that part. I deduced as much when I first laid eyes on you," she said coolly. "I meant the part where you mentioned us working together. I do not foresee that happening. Terra is not a part of the Silver Alliance."
He smiled sardonically at her. "Not yet we aren't. But it seems your princess has other ideas. She's been sneaking down here for about a month now. My prince is enchanted with her. And she with him, it seems."
She inwardly groaned. Leave it to Princess Serenity to fall for the one person she couldn't have. And once the princess had her mind set on something, no one could change it. She had to find her princess and drag her back home and report back to Sailor Venus. They had to nip this in the bud before Serenity truly fell in love with the Terran prince; for they would be doomed if they let that happen.
Another loud rumble made her jump again and she chided herself for being so easily spooked. She heard his chuckle and ignored it, choosing instead to try to find her princess through their bond.
"You're not Sailor Jupiter, since I heard she favors this type of weather." He had walked closer to her but she refused to acknowledge his presence. This seemed to irk him as he didn't look accustomed to being ignored. "You know it's rude to ignore someone that's speaking to you."
She sighed. He sounded like a petulant schoolboy. Unluckily for her, before she had a chance to scold him like one, the heavens opened up and big, fat drops of water began hitting her face. She squealed as he grabbed her wrist and tugged her along after him. Drenched in the few seconds that followed, and acutely aware that her sailor fuku now clung to her like a second skin, she let him lead her. They stopped underneath an overhang, both trying to catch their breath from the sprint.
She took one look at him and began to laugh. "You look like a drowned nuvox!" She managed to say in-between fits of laughter.
He shot her a look of disdain, but couldn't help the chuckle that escaped his lips. "I've no idea what that is, but pleasant I'm sure it's not." He undid the band that had held his luscious, curly hair and began to strain it. Another bought of laughter racked her body as she watched him preen himself.
"A nuvox is this little fur ball of a creature we have in Mercury. He's rather skinny, but his hair makes him look three times his normal size. When you get them wet, their white fur hangs limply on their skin. They don't much like getting wet so they'll spend the rest of the day carefully drying themselves off. Same fashion as you are doing now." For the first time, she smiled warmly at him.
He stopped messing with his hair and stared at her, a goofy smile on his lips. "Sounds dreadful."
"Oh no, they're my favorite creatures of Mercury. Extremely intelligent."
"I'll remember that, Sailor Mercury," he said softly, moving closer to her. She couldn't help but admire how beautiful he was, which was a peculiar way to describe a male, but he was nonetheless. His face had a softness to it, a delicacy most women would be jealous of. His hand reached out and she held her breath, afraid to even move. He tucked a strand of her loose, blue hair behind her ear, his hand resting a bit longer than necessary on her cheek.
"You should really laugh and smile more. You're radiant when you do." He dropped his hand and moved away from her, again messing with his hair. She felt her face flush and a warm, pleasant feeling fill her whole body.
They had stayed like that for a while, waiting for the downpour to clear. They had talked amiably and he had even gotten her to laugh a few times. Each time he had, he'd smiled brilliantly at her and her heart would flutter. After the rain had ebbed, they'd found their respective monarchs. She had scolded her princess half-heartedly, not really as upset as she'd been earlier. They had left then, and a small part of her had secretly wondered if that was the last time she'd ever see him. The rational side of her had said it was for learning purposes, but she knew better.
They had met many more times like that, but always random and sporadic-on the nights that they both protected their monarchs. Soon, though, their meetings weren't by chance and she had felt herself falling in love against her rational mind yelling at her not to. It'd been forbidden, for a senshi could love no other besides their princess. But she had fallen in love, with a Terran man no less. Of course Serenity had been ecstatic when she learned that her heart belonged to the green-eyed shitennou. Serenity wanted her senshi to find love just like she had with Prince Endymion.
It had been their downfall, the love they felt for the Terran men. Somehow their hearts had fallen to darkness and they had dragged the Silver Alliance down with them. She had met him one last time on the battlefield. Saw the shell of the man she once knew before her. His eyes held malice where before they shown with love. The twist of his lips made her heart yearn for the easy smile. She knew she would not make it out alive, even if her physical shell did. She had given this man her heart, the very fibers of her being, and he had already destroyed her the moment he raised his sword against her loved ones.
When they had fought she had hesitated when she had the chance to strike him down. He had gutted her then, not once wavering as his sword shredded through her skin. He had even laughed, a hollow laugh, as her blood stained his sword. His laugh had been short lived as a flaming arrow pierced his heart. He had died before his body had hit the ground. His lifeless eyes staring at her, she began to cry. She felt Rei kneel down beside her and cradle her head. Tearstains streaked down her soot-covered cheeks. Her face looked pale, like she had lost too much blood. She noticed a large, gaping wound on Rei's left flank that oozed blood steadily down her side. Rei leaned down, her long ebony hair fanning around them like a curtain, and kissed her forehead as her last breath sounded like a choked sob. She had learned later on that Rei had died like that, Rei's body having fallen to the side, but her head still on Rei's lap.
The tears had begun to fall again and the numbness she had felt had ebbed away, leaving the pain scratching at her heart. She had met him again in this lifetime. And in this lifetime she had not hesitated to kill him. She had not known how significant the man with the leaf-green eyes had been to her. All she knew was in that moment- she had felt like she had lost a piece of herself. Many years later she would find out why. One could say they were even now and she smiled bitterly at the thought.
She had walked to a little river a mile or so behind her neighborhood. It hadn't frozen over yet to her enjoyment. The running water acted like a balm on her frazzled nerves. The soft, trickling sound like music to her ears. She felt hot all of the sudden, like her whole body had been set ablaze. In that moment, her feverish mind came up with a senseless idea, and for once in her life, she paid her rational mind no attention.
She began to strip. She flung her gloves, scarf, and coat to the floor. Her boots came flying off next. She felt like the only way to get rid of the pain would be to dive into the river and wash it all away. She was no longer thinking clearly. Her mind did not care about hypothermia, about any of the consequences. Her shirt went up and over her head, tossed casually aside. Goosebumps prickled her body and her numb fingers had little success on unbuttoning her pants.
"Ami!" A familiar voice called out to her.
Ami abruptly stopped, her hands falling limply to her sides. Even in her delusional state, the ghost of him called out to her.
"Ami, stop!" This time the voice was closer, more urgent.
Her body tensed up, but Ami did not move. She stood there, not daring to breath, not moving an inch. She felt warm hands engulf her, a solid chest behind her. She inhaled deeply as she leaned against the warm embrace. His scent surrounding her, she knew she must have finally cracked.
"Ami," she heard his voice whisper, tickling her ear. His hands grasped her shoulders and gently turned her to face him. Ami dreamily stared up at leaf-green eyes. She saw tears streaming down his face and pain in his eyes. "I'm so sorry," he choked out. He pulled her into a tight embrace, burying his face in the crook of her neck. His warm breath on her throat sent little shivers running down her spine. He must have mistaken her shiver for something else, for he engulfed her again, running his hands up and down her arms to keep her warm. "I need to get you out of here, you're burning up!"
He bent down and retrieved her clothes. He started trying to dress her, a small blush marring his cheeks as he saw the state of her undress. He managed to get her shirt back on before she clasped his hands with hers.
"I was always the one that blushed." He smiled that beautiful smile she had yearned for all these years. And then her mind went haywire, trying to piece everything together. "Zoicite, is it really you? My mind isn't playing tricks on me? You're not some ghost here to torture me further?" She reached out and touched his face gingerly. He leaned into the touch, closing his eyes and sighing contently.
"I go by Zeph now. And add this to the long list of things I'm sorry for." He leaned in and kissed her fervently, like she would disappear if he didn't. She kissed him back, relishing the feeling of her hands entangling in his hair. They broke apart after awhile, both breathing heavily. He didn't let her go though and his hands went to rest on her slim hips. "Come on, let's take you home. You've got a fever. Once you get better, I'll grovel at your feet for forgiveness. I'll pray to all the gods for a sliver of hope that you'll take me back. That I can explain everything to you." He easily picked her up, cuddling her to his chest.
She knew she should've been wary of him, angry at his double betrayal, but she had no energy left in her. She had gone through all those emotions months ago when she first learned about her past. And for the second time in this life, Ami ignored her rational side.
So this is my first little one shot! I kept listening to the song Ghost by Ella Henderson and this thought of Ami popped into my head. (If you haven't, go check it out, it's very good and fits well) This turned out a lot longer than I had originally intended. But the story had a mind of it's own so I just kept writing. I'll be writing these whenever the mood strikes me, but no guarantees to when that'll be. Review and tell me what you think of it, thanks!