Chapter 15: She's coming back.

Staring at the beautiful ring in front of her. Makoto took a few deep calming breathes. With everything she has gone through, she was excited that this man wanted to marry her. Her mind screamed for her to say yes and forget it all. To allow someone to finally love her, someone she knew she would be happy with, yet in the mist of the excitement that coursed through her being, her heart was not ready. Tears came to her eyes as she struggled to say yes. Her mind screaming for it while her heart stopped her mouth from moving.

Images of meeting Trowa for the first time as an engaged woman came to mind, soon after that memories started flooding her mind. All the times he was there for her. Silently checking in, pushing her to stand when she wanted to fall. Encouraging her to take back her life. As she swallowed, she felt a tear escape, when the image of Trowa kissing her for the first time. Raising her gaze to meet the ones of Trowa, more tears fell when she saw the disappointment in his eyes. "Trowa." She whispered with regret not knowing how not to hurt this amazing man.

Sighing, Trowa lifted himself from the ground, "I'm sorry. I knew not to rush…"

"No," She stopped him. Stepping closer to him. "I love you Trowa." She whispered to him strongly as she held his hand. "You have supported, lifted me, and protected me from it all and through it all."

Her other hand wiped the tears from her cheek, "You are everything that I want in a man, but at the end of the day Trowa, I can't continue with our relationship knowing that you care for me so deeply and knowing I cannot return it back to you, in the way you deserve."

Turning her back to him feeling foolish and scared, Makoto leaned on the wall for support as she continued in a whisper. "I'm sorry."

Silence descended in the entry hall of Makoto's apartment as Trowa took in all that she said. He knew it was a long shot but she loved him. That had to account for something? If she can love him then he just had to wait. Holding on to that hope, he walked up until he was close to her. Slowly he lifted his hand to hold on to her shoulder. "Mako, I can wait for you." He whispered softly yet firmly. In that same moment Mako closed her eyes, steeling herself, knowing that these next words would hurt the man that did so much for her. Hurting the man that she cared much for, but knew that if they married they would end up unsatisfied. She slowly turned to him, gazing into his forest green eyes, "I can't be your wife Trowa." She lifted her hand to place on his cheek. "I love you, but I am not in love with you. I'm sorry that I lead you to think of Marriage." She stopped when he reached for her hand that was on his check and covered it with his own. "I'm so sorry."

He did not regret asking her to marry him. He appreciated her honesty and couldn't really blame her. She had never promised him a future. He just loved her. He loved her genuinely and cared more for her happiness. The only thing he was upset about was not being able to be the one that gave her what she needed. Not being the person she wanted. It pained him that she did not love him the way he loved her. "Give her the chance to choose." The voice of Heero came strong in his mind as he remembered his friend's advice. "Even if it's you she chooses, give her that opportunity. It will matter in the end."

Kissing her cheek one last time, he gave her a small smile. "I'll see you in Tokyo." With that he left her in her apartment knowing where he belonged in her life. He wanted more, but he knew when to fold. He knew when the battle was lost. He may have lost her as his girl but he knew he will be there for her no matter what. She had a special place in his heart.

"Oh good you're here!" Came an excited voice as Aden walked closer to their table. Usagi removed her bag from the chair next to her to give room to Quatre's sister. When the beautiful woman sat down, Usagi turned her gaze to the raven hair beauty across from her. "I'm so excited that we are all here. It's been a while."

"It hasn't been that long Usagi." Came the laughing voice of Minako, who sat on her left. "More like two weeks. Right Ami?"

The bluenette giggled when Usagi pouted and crossed her arms over her swelling stomach. "It has, but to give Usagi credit, it's been a while since we all sat down together." She spoke as she lifted her glass of water to drink from with her left hand. On her hand held a princess cut diamond surrounded by sapphire gems on both sides sitting on a platinum band. Besides Aden, she was the only one not married. Both Minako and Rei had gotten married in the last 2 years to their fiancés. She smiled as she remembered the days. They had all contacted Makoto with the news and asked for her to be there, but due to the demands from her school she was not able to attend but made sure the girls proceeded with their plans and not postponed it because of her. Even though she wasn't there, she had recorded messages for both the girls wedding which she had asked both Ami and Usagi to help deliver it to them as well as their gifts.

Thinking of the brunette, brought up the strong desire to see her again. They had all kept in touch with her, letting her know what was happening in their lives and getting an account of what was happening with hers but none were able to see her in the recent year.

She was shocked when Makoto had called her over four months ago crying and worried over Trowa. The brunette had explained to her what happened, how Trowa had proposed to her and how she had turned him down. She knew that Makoto feared losing Trowa's friendship over it. Ami remembered asking her one thing that made the brunette stop crying, "Do you regret turning him away?"

There was moment of silence before she had answered with a firmness that spoke volumes. "No, I don't."

"Then you have nothing to worry about Mako. Trowa is, if nothing else, rational. He may be hurt now, but he will see that this was for the best. Now focus on wrapping things up there so you can come back. I've missed you." That brought a chuckle from the brunette, before the conversation turned a different direction.

"Ami!" she was brought out of her reverie, when Rei had called out her name loudly. She found all the women, Aden, Usagi, Minako and Rei staring at her, some in wonder while others in amusement.

A sly smile suddenly turned up on Minako's face as she placed her face on her hand. "Day dreaming of your wedding night are you?" She lifted her right eyebrow up twice as her grin broaden.

Ami blushed as her friends laughed.

"From my experience it's pretty erotic."

"Mina!" Ami gasped as she watched the blond throw her head back and laughed. She smiled knowingly as she spoke confidently, "I have no complains so far."

The laughter died as all four girls looked at Ami in shock for a moment, before the laughter filled the cafe once more.

"It's always the quiet ones that you have to be watchful of." Aden said jokingly as her hand rested on her chest as if trying to calm the beating of her heart while laughter twinkle in her eyes.

Usagi calming from the laugher that busted from her, focused her jubilant gaze on the beautiful bluenette and asked, "but really what took your attention away. Rei called your name twice before that." She took a sip of her cool drink.

"Makoto." Came her responded. "I was thinking of her."

"I can't wait to see her." Rei said with an excitement that was contagious. "Eight more months and she will be here."

"So she is coming back?" Asked Aden quietly.

Usagi nodded as she took a spoonful of her slice of cake she had ordered before Aden showed up. "She is. She finished her culinary classes about four months ago, and should be coming back by the middle of next year."

"Even though I missed her. I am so happy and proud that she took this decision." Minako spoke after taking a sip of her drink. "She sounds more confident and ready to take the world on."

Rei nodded. "At first I was afraid that she would never come back." She looked at Aden carefully before adding, "With everything that has happened, I'm glad she decided to come back. It hasn't been the same without her."

Every head seated around the table nodded in agreement.

"Are the guys in the know?" Aden asked.

"Mamoru and Trowa are, but not the rest." Ami stated. "Mamoru was there when we had her on speaker phone one day. She had said it there for the first time and asked us not to say anything. Trowa…" She kept silent for a second before continuing, "Trowa had never lost touch with her."

"I see." Whispered Aden. She was happy that her once sister in law was coming back, but she was concerned that Trowa had stepped in the position that Quatre had been dreaming of for a long time. A position in her mind and heart belonged to her brother.

Usagi looked at the other girls catching their attention before smiling a knowing smile. Even though she loved Trowa as a brother, she wanted Quatre to have his second chance. There was something in her heart that resonated strongly when she thought of Makoto and her once husband. Although, the start of the marriage was unromantic and with Quatre's anger towards his sister swaying his judgment, she knew that there was a chance of love. Even if the marriage was no more. This was the reason she had called the girls to meet up and called Aden to join them.

Her and Mamoru had agreed to just support Makoto in whatever decision she took, so when news came that she and Trowa had started dating she was there for her one hundred percent. She knew that Trowa would be good for her, but the question that kept coming to her, was he the best choice for her dear friend?

"How are you Mako?" her mind took her back to the conversation she had with her friend over six months ago.

"Usa, thank you for your gift! I absolutely love it!" Came the vibrant voice of the brunette. "I'm doing well. I should be wrapping up with my last class in a couple of months." There was a pause as Usagi could hear a door opening and closing through the phone. "How are you and Mamoru?"

"We are doing well. We were thinking of coming to Italy for your graduation or a few days afterwards to celebrate with you. I'm sure the girls are planning something similar."

"That would be lovely Usa-chan." Mako responded as she unhooks her hair pin and allowed her hair to flow down her back. "Trowa said he would be around for the graduation as well."

"Ah, so I think we should reschedule then." Came a giggle from the blonde. "He may have something romantic instore for you."

Makoto smiled softly before answering. "He is romantic." There was a sense hesitation Usagi picked up before she heard the next words. "He is wonderful."

That was the moment she knew that although Trowa treated Makoto well, Mako's heart wasn't fully there. She smiled sadly for her friend. "You still think of him." It wasn't a question but a quiet answer to the unspoken question that filled the air.

Makoto did not respond to Usagi, but changed the direction of the discussion instead asking about when Usagi and Mamoru were going to start a family of their own. Usagi's laughter was so contagious that the previous conversation was left alone as the blonde told her the news of pregnancy but had asked her not to mention it to anyone just yet. She being the first to know that in 7 months they would be welcoming the first child of the Chiba's.

Kind beautiful sky blue eyes turned to look into sharp blue-green eyes of Quatre's sister, "Aden." She waited for her full attention to be upon her before continuing. "We want you to help us."

Frowning in confusion Aden blinked a couple of times. "I don't understand."

"We need your help in planning for a chance meeting." Aden's gaze turned to meet the gaze of Ami's, if possible even more confused. "but I thought Makoto and Trowa ar…"

"Let her decide." Came the cheerful carefree voice of Minako, effectively cutting off Aden from completing her statement. "Besides a little competition never hurt anyone." She winked playfully to Aden as a broad smile lifted her beautiful face.

"I think what Mina means to say is that it's never over until you say I do." Rei added, knowing well and good that Trowa had already tried and was unsuccessful. She brought up her cup of tea, that sat on the table in front of her, to her lips as she thought of the dynamic situation at hand. Taking a sip of the cooling tea, she set it back on the table. Rei cared for him and thought him to be a great man, but she knew that Makoto belonged elsewhere. Even if she didn't want to recognize it, it was evident. They wouldn't push any one on their friend but it didn't hurt to help steer her in another direction hoping for the best.

Aden looked at all the girls one by one in silence. In her mind, she thought how wonderful it was to have people that cared for you and how Makoto was blessed to have these women in her lives. It proved to her that, if her and her sisters had not come in when they heard of the issues that were arising, these women, and the men they had married would have helped clear the air. It was pleasing to know that Quatre and Makoto had such a strong support. She smiled as she nodded. "Of course." Her gaze shifted back to Usagi's, "what's your plan?"

After so many years of separation, it was time to bring these two in one place. If after this, they desire not to be with each other, then Aden can truly say it wasn't meant to be.

Author's note: I was thinking of ending it with this chapter, but I decided to split this chapter into two. We have one more chapter guys. Thank you for hanging in there.