Time period: This takes place in my first Utena fan fic entitled "Softer Than the Cruel".
Somewhere after Juri has had her little conversation with Utena...and before Shiori knocks at her door at 5 in the morning.
Utena: is not mine...just borrowing...
Explanations: it was a challenge from my friend who wanted to know how *ahem...cough* Kozue...um...ended up in Juri's shower at the end of "Softer than the Cruel"... So here's the explanation. I'm gonna run that way now *points off to the left...then darts off in the opposite direction*
(since the Author of the fic has run way it falls to the rather stoic and noble Auburn haired beauty to finish the introduction. She raises an eye brow as she steps forward from the shadows)
"I hate doing these things so I'll make it short", she states coolly. "The poetry found in this tale belongs to Alithea...She does not take kindly to those who take her work without permission...She offers no threat but i would like to remind you....It is my story...so don't...mess with it." She walks off calmly not giving the audience a backward glance.

Break Me

By Alithea

She smirked as the boy pushed her harshly against the tree. His shouts and demands were lost on her, as she just looked up into the branches of the great willow tree. Not receiving the sort of reaction he wanted he set in with a string of foul names that she had heard countless times before. Her soft blue eyes shut just for a moment as she reminded herself...She probably deserved this sort of treatment. She had been undeniably cruel to the boy, breaking his heart and tossing him aside like nothing. It was amusing to be so vilified, especially since she had just made a point to stop her wicked ways. The world worked that way though. He pushed her again, and her head hit hard against the trunk of the tree. His jealous hand wrapped around her throat and she opened her eyes, daring him to squeeze. Her smile grew as he complied and then his grip loosened. He was so angry. She wondered exactly what kind of injuries the evening would leave her with. He was getting frustrated.

"Why is this so funny to you", he shouted as she let a giggle escape her lips. "I should kill you for being so treacherous."

Her laughter grew at this point. She wasn't afraid of him. She didn't care if he hit her...he was a fool if he thought his actions would make her change her mind or make things better, because it wouldn't. She had very carefully rid herself of all her so-called boy friends and he was the last to be disposed of. She was tired of useless relationships, tired of the cruel. She wanted to escape it before she ended up like Shiori, or worse. Her only mistake so far was thinking she could start things fresh without her past trying to punish her for her crimes. She was waiting and he was still yelling. His hand over her throat again pressing hard, blocking the air from her lungs...still...Hard as it was to breathe she laughed.

"It isn't funny", he said. "It isn't! You...you...whorish cunt! I'll show you how serious I am." He raised his fist and was prepared to pound into her wicked face.

She shut her eyes. Prepared for the worst and hoping for his true cowardice to come through she could do nothing but wait. A chilling wind picked up wrapping around her like death and if that's what she was to receive...Then that's what she was prepared for. It wasn't like the foolish boy would ever be able to get away with it. Just as she was certain she was going to kiss consciousness goodbye the boy gave a loud yelp. Her throat was quickly released and she opened her eyes. The boy was being held by the scruff of his collar like a doll. The tall young woman who held him did not seem at all pleased. Her hazel eyes were more than a little cat like in the darkness, and her long auburn locks were mere shadows begging for justice.

She dropped the boy to the ground and held him there with her foot. She stooped in close to him and whispered, "I don't think I have to tell you...exactly how much trouble you're in. Before you're expelled I want to see you in the fencing room after school tomorrow."

She took her foot away and watched as the boy slowly crawled to his feet. He was begging and pleading, offering up excuses that fell on deaf and irritated ears. She stepped in very close to him.

"If I were you I'd shut my mouth about now", she said coldly. "In fact it might be wise, sir...If you ran."

He didn't need to interpret. He scurried off as fast as he could in the direction of his dorm. The lovely panther looked over at the girl leaning up against the tree. She was smirking slyly and brushed back her ocean blue hair with her fingers.

"Are you all right?"

The girl huffed. "Oh I'm fine. Nothing I couldn't handle." She regretted trying to sound so brave.

"That's not exactly the attitude I would take if were you...but...You're very lucky you weren't seriously hurt", the young woman replied.

"I've encountered worse. But it is what I deserve after all." She stepped a little closer to her savior, trying to read the fencer's face.

"How can you say that Kozue? No one deserves that", was the soft and disappointed reply.

The girl huffed. "Those who play the game of cruelty are destined to be punished eventually Miss Arisugawa. I've played it well for most of my young life...it was bound to catch up to me."

"You just be glad your brother wasn't here to see this. I don't even want to imagine"; she paused as she noticed Kozue inching closer to her. "What are you doing?"

Deep and cruel eyes burned with a tempting challenge. "I just want to thank you." Her soft arms wrapped around the stoic angel's neck and she placed a light kiss on her cheek. She stepped away quickly noting the quickened pulse of her savior's heartbeat.

"Thank you..." She walked off slowly. She wished that her hero would chase after her but she knew better. She could feel the young woman's searing glare on her as she walked off, and she wondered...She wondered how long it would take for the princely girl to fall prey to her want. She smirked and ran her hand over her aching throat. She loved when things got complicated. Your intent was never very clear
What are you doing here?
Your smile was softer than the cruel
Taking my heart you break every rule
I wonder why I burn so for your kiss
I wonder what leads me to this
Your intent was never very clear
So...what are you doing here?
Why do you reach to touch my heart
Taking the past to banish the dark
I wonder what leads me to this
Wanting nothing but to take you into pure bliss
Your intent still isn't very clear
Tell me...
What are you doing here?

She couldn't sleep. She hadn't slept in days, and she knew...She knew that if she didn't rest soon she wouldn't be able to maintain her grace and poise. She'd break under the strain of being the unapproachable panther everyone seemed to recognize her as. Her hazel eyes looked to the ceiling for some redemption. They begged for sleep, but the night refused her. Offering up only emotions and desires that she just wanted to bury. Even with all the advice the prince had offered up, even with the hope that resounded in her voice... Juri just couldn't help but fight. Even something as simple as sleep she couldn't manage for herself. She hated that, and she wished the rage would just vanish. It's a simple curse though, and all selfless individuals carry it. Because the eternally selfless can not help but feel that they are indeed, eternally selfish. She rolled over gently onto her side and watched the time tick away on her clock.

Random points of concern manifesting every time she thought her eyes were going to shut. It was those eyes, which seemed to haunt her the most. Those deeply cruel ocean blue eyes, that whispered of music and want. She fought the natural instinct that swelled in her body to accept Kozue's dare. She fought it because there was just no way she would be able to leave it at a single night...or whatever it was that the girl intended. No way to leave the challenge unharmed or unscared...Besides that girl was the queen of heartache. One look at the evening's event proved that. One look at every thing that had been happening provided all the reasons why she should fight her want. Still...it was a difficult battle. She was so tired and she knew...Juri knew that if someone offered her rest she'd take it. Break me....
Please....break me

It had been a rather damp and dark day. The rain just wouldn't stop falling and in the few breaks that occurred between the storms everything looked weary. It was odd weather for that time of year. Usually every day at the academy was like spring, but the weather didn't bother her. She was happy for the change, it gave her a chance to break away from her group of gossiping friends and admire the gray washed sky. She padded along to her dorm humming a little melody her brother had written a few days prior to her little "encounter". It had happened weeks ago but the campus was still a buzz with the rumors of why the boy was so swiftly expelled. Much to her surprise...She was never mentioned in any of the rumors. It was interesting. Her deep blue eyes sparked with attention as she reached her dorm. Beneath a tree, politely leaning against the trunk, an arm neatly folded around her waist was a beautiful panther. Kozue smiled slyly as she approached, careful not to seem overly pleased at the young woman's presence. As she got closer she noted the fencer's worn appearance. It was well hidden, but she could tell...Juri was exhausted. She stepped in close and whispered.

"This is a good way to start a rumor you know...Waiting out here like this." She stepped back burning the young woman with her usual challenge. Break me...
Make me fall...

Juri huffed, "I'm not here to see you. I'm waiting for your brother."

"I never said you were waiting for me", was the quick reply. An ocean blue eyebrow popped up as she could clearly see the need for rest...in any form hidden with in the angel's eyes. " You'll have a while to wait though. Miki has a late piano lesson this evening." She stepped in a bit closer, feeling the rhythm of her guests breathing. "You're welcome to wait inside...if you like." She whispered closely to Juri's ear and then stepped away, walking swiftly inside, hoping to be followed. It really wouldn't take much to topple Juri's walls. No, there was no way the fencer would be able to fight her much longer. The minute she entered the building she heard soft noble steps behind her. She tried to contain her happiness. She spun around and waited for her guest to say something. Juri walked over to a couch and sat gracefully. She hid her self well from everyone in the outside world, but Kozue could see. She could see that the lovely and elegant captain of the fencing team was tired, to the point of breaking. Break me
Make me fall...

"Can I get you anything"; she asked softly and walked into the kitchen. Breaking...me
It's ever so easy
To break me
Make me fall

"No", was the stiff reply. She shut her eyes, not sure if she'd be able to open them again. Moments later she felt the cushions on the sofa shift and could feel her hostess sliding towards her. "What are you doing", she asked with out open her eyes. Breaking...
Breaking me
Inching close
And whispering along my damaged amour
Whispering an offer to...just...

"Just sitting", was the slightly wicked reply. "You should get some rest...When was the last time you slept?" Falling...
And toppling...
Destroying...all these walls
Whispers...a sweet word
Just to bring me down...just to
Make me...
Just to save me....

The question was surprising. Her weary blue-green eyes opened slowly. "It really isn't your concern." Will you break me
Will you save me
Take great care and just...
Make me fall...
Make me fall as you say...

"No", Kozue whispered. She inched closer. "I suppose it isn't my concern. Still...You look tired. You should rest."

The girl was getting a little closer with every breath she took, and it worried Juri because she wasn't in a state to fight it. She shut her eyes again, breathed in deep. "I should go", she whispered. "Tell your brother I stopped by." She tried to stand but found she couldn't. The girl next to her brushed a delicate hand across her face and then cool arms wrapped around her. "What are you doing?" It was almost a plea, but it was more of an invitation. Her entire being begged her to rest, begged to let go just once. Still she fought it. Break me...
Make me fall
Make me give in
And it'll only take
Just a little push
Breaking me
It's so easy...
Whisper...sweet and cruel...
Offer...I can't refuse...
Breaking me....
It'll be so easy...

"Don't you want to rest Juri?" Kozue had never been so informal, she had never dared. But she knew she could get away with it at that moment. She pulled the angel closer until her head was resting safely in her lap. "Don't you want to sleep?" And break me
Make me fall....

She couldn't pull away. She could refuse such an offer. Her eyes shut slowly as the girl's fingers ran gently through her hair, and a slight, whisper of a kiss on her cheek sent her deep into an ocean of dreams. After, in the dark
I write the things that plague my heart
I drift to dreams
And landscapes unseen
I swim through the oceans
Of my forgotten emotions
After, in the dark
I write the things that rip me apart
Confess every kiss I wanted to place
Upon your lovely but cruel face
I slay my demons
Bury them in simple reasons
Reasons why I shouldn't cry
Answers to questions that just won't die
After, in the dark
And in the dark
I end the game, resign my part
Cast off the masks of the day
Wander to memories that drive them away
And in the end I can not move
I wonder what I'm trying to prove Keeping myself from telling you all this
In the end it's something I miss
After, and in the dark
My want for you began to spark
Just now...just...
In the dark

She woke to the sound of a whispered argument. Both voices were recognizable and both were not meaning to wake her. She sat up and sighed. She hated when things got difficult. She hated complicating her life, but she was really good at it. The small quarrel ended and seconds later Miki emerged from the kitchen with a broad smirk. His sister followed him. The gracious angel wasn't surprised when the blue haired youth didn't mention anything about her and his sister. He was interesting that way. Interesting because even though she couldn't hear all of the argument she knew...Miki was making sure his sister wasn't doing anything cruel or trapping. He was making sure Kozue's intentions were honorable, and Juri found that amusing. It was nothing though...She apologized for falling asleep and told the boy what she needed to. It was a mistake trying to let the events of the evening just roll off her. Trying to forget how good it felt to just let everything go and give in. She wondered if she would ever have cause to do that again.

Finally back in her own room she collapsed onto her bed. A small rap on her door interrupted her hope for any continued sleep and she sighed wearily. She collected her self and found her noble demeanor. She opened the door stiffly and was met with two ocean blue eyes. She sighed, all her masks slipping to the ground like the rain outside.

"What can I do for you", she asked. Her eyes full of exhaustion and sparks of the girl's early challenge.

"Isn't it obvious?"

"Painfully", was the soft reply.

The girl walked into the room and sat on the bed lightly. Juri shut the door softly.

"You can't possibly expect this to ever work", the stoic angel stated softly.

The girl shook her head. "I never expect anything to work."

"I can't trust you... not after..." She was just making excuses now. Fighting against what she had already lost to. And it would have made her smile if she hadn't still been so tired.

"Then don't trust me", Kozue cut in. "Trust that maybe I'll break your heart...and maybe you'll break mine. Trust that and you won't have to worry."

That phrase... "Don't worry"...she hated it. But it was always the best advice anyone could ever give her. She took a deep breath and tried her best to expel her final chains as she exhaled. The lovely panther walked over and sat on the bed. She inched close to the girl next to her, waiting for her heart to stop beating...waiting for her breath to shorten...waiting for memories to fade...waiting for the world to stop and waiting...waiting for doubt to slip away as once cruel lips met hers. And as they did... she knew things could never, ever go back to how they once were. Soft and deep...like the gentle pull of the ocean she found all her walls falling, and every chain letting go. Cool lips pulled from hers and gentle arms pushed her back into the softness of the bed. Nimble fingers tugged at buttons, and shifted unwanted clothing away. A light and soft hand rested over the fencer's heart feeling the pulse, lingering on the rhythm. Juri pulled the girl closer, taking her into a stormy sea she never knew existed. Creating memories worth looking back on but never to be uttered out loud. Whispered pleasures hitting the air only to be replaced by echoed confessions. And in the end when all was still and both lay in the warm rhythm of their beating hearts...when a single touch spoke to the volumes in their souls that's when a whispered phrase as simple as "Get some rest", meant the most.

She watched her sleep. She had watched her sleep earlier in the evening but that was different. That was less innocent and much less meant. She felt strangely at ease, running her fingers through the lovely angel's hair she wondered why. She theorized that perhaps since she meant everything she gave...it was...in a way more special. Her ocean blue eyes drifted over to the clock on the wall...Dawn would be intruding much faster than she wanted. Her delicate fingers slowly pulsed down Juri's bare back, causing the beauty to shift slightly and mumble. It brought a smile to Kozue's face.

"Sleep well my prince", she whispered and slid from her lover's grasp. She brushed a few strands of soft blue hair from her eyes and headed for the shower.

Gather the distance
Notice the tide
Wish for dreams
You'll never be able to hide
Understand the pulse
Feel the pull of this rhythm
Look into my eyes
And know the secrets hidden within them
Inches away from you
Seconds from your touch
More than 3 cm
It's not close enough
Gather the distance
Notice my stare
Take what I offer
Succumb to the dare
Wander to oceans
And places unseen
Whisper to me your wishes
Your darkest of dreams
And find what you long for
Take only the best
Lay down your head
Sleep my love...Rest....

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