By: Sailor Knight
Salutations. Sorry for the length of time it was between stories . . . actually, no, I'm not too sure if I am. I got three E-mails regarding Toujours. One asked me when the next chapter was coming out, another condemned my actions, and a third was a fiction idea. A few E-mails here and there that tell me you enjoy my reading, or hate it, and the reasons why would be very helpful for not only better stories but my actual will to write them. Address is the same if you want to E-Mail me: Saturn_Knight@hotmail.com . Anyhow, this is the idea of the person who E-mailed me, and thus dedicated to her. Enjoy, Maggie.
Yet another overcast, cloudy day in Japan. The wind ripped through the trees, scattering leaves across the lush green grass of the park where both Hotaru and Chibi-Usa were sitting. It was on the cooler side, and neither girl had anything warmer than a heavy sweater, though neither wanted to move from their location. However, a stray gust of wind caught Hotaru off guard, causing her to shiver and pull her arms tighter around herself.
"Are you cold?" Chibi-Usa asked, worried that her friend might catch a chill and become sick. Hotaru only had time to nod once before she was moved, being rearranged by Chibi-Usa . "Here, what if I sit like..." Hotaru's back was moved against the other girl's chest and a set of arms found their way around her body, clasping around her stomach. Chibi felt a little odd with the position, thinking she was behaving too much like her mother and Mamoru, but she wanted to keep her friend warm. Hotaru smiled over her shoulder, her eyes have closed with sleep, before she settled into her friend's body, thinking the position was all too right.
"Tired too huh?" The pink haired girl asked, adjusting her body so that Hotaru's shoulder didn't hit her directly in the rib. Once more, the quiet girl nodded, yawning as if to accentuate Chibi's point before growing still. "Yeah, sleep on me." Chibi mumbled with a smile on her face, "You're like just like Artemis." Hotaru didn't rise a reply, only the quiet, steady sound of her breathing was heard in the still of the park evening. The smaller girl's mind began to wander, looking her friend over thoughtfully before coming to an unusual conclusion, 全he trusts me enough to sleep...and with her that's a pretty big thing.' Chibi thought, trying to hold as still as possible though her body tried to make her fidget. 選've only seen her sleep in bed at home, in my room on the floor, or with Puu, but...' Her tiny, soft hand brushed some of Hotaru's hair from in front of her eyes, 鮮ot me...not like this.'
A mix of emotions began to work their way through Chibi's system: happiness, flattery, excitement, but also uncertainty and doubt. 閃aybe she's just to exhausted...I made her run around a lot today.' She thought to herself, pursing her lips as she again commanded her body to remain still. 全he's probably just too tired to stay awake...but....maybe she trusts me? Of course she trusts me, she's my best friend! She tells me things she'd never tell anyone else...but...' Chibi shook her head quickly to clear her thoughts, the ends of her hair slapping her in the face. The movement roused Hotaru, who took a deep breath and opened her eyes."I fell asleep..." she thought verbally, sitting up, putting a hand to her face and rubbing the open palm down her cheek. "I'm sorry." Hotaru spoke aloud and turned to face Chibi, her voice sounding groggy and disconnected. The pink haired girl glanced away, looking hurt. 選t was an accident...' She stood up, brushing her jeans off, 全he didn't do it because she trusted me.' This quick movement startled Hotaru, who fell back onto her ankles and looked up at Chibi questioningly. "Let's go home." The smaller girl said with a slight snip in her voice that made Hotaru wonder what she did wrong. 全he's.....not mad that I fell asleep on her, is she?' Hotaru thought as she got to her feet and balanced herself from the uneasy equilibrium of someone who just woke. Putting a hand on Chibi's shoulder to keep herself upright, Hotaru got a sharp look and quickly withdrew it. 全he's mad at me,' the black haired girl thought, looking to her feet and wrapping her arms around herself. 全he's upset that I fell asleep on her...maybe I should just go home for the night...' "I'm really sorry, Chibi-Usa....I swear."
"I know you are." Chibi answered, thinking 禅hat's why it hurts...' "Come on," and she started in the direction back to Usagi's house not waiting to see if Hotaru followed.
選'm sorry.....' Hotaru thought, hanging her head and beginning to follow after her friend who had a considerable lead on her, 選 didn't mean to assume too much trust...'
Back at the Tsukino residence, both girls sat on the floor in Chibi's room in complete silence. The blatherings of Usagi were heard through the walls as she yakked away on the phone to one of her friends. "When she's done, I'll call Michi-Mama and go home." Hotaru said, not looking at Chibi, in a timid, almost frightened voice. 塑ou're mad at me and I'm afraid I'm going to ruin things if I stay...'
"If you want to," Chibi replied, picking up a manga that was on the table next to her and started flipping through the pages. 全he's that upset with herself....she can't trust me anymore? We used to sleep over all the time, why is it different now?' Drawings of various characters flew by her as she furiously turned the pages, 糎as it because I was holding onto her?' Hotaru noticed Chibi's obviously riled demeanor and heaved a sigh, thinking 全he can't wait for me to leave...I'm sorry! I didn't mean to assume!'
Neither said a word after that, and Usagi hadn't closed her mouth for a full 10 minutes. Hotaru hugged her legs to her chest, her chin resting on her tight-covered knees with her eyes cast down onto the floor. She was thinking, which was always a dangerous thing, especially in the emotional state she was in now. Hotaru remembered all the fun times she and Chibi-Usa had in the past: parties, sleep overs, playing at the park, or even just sitting and spilling their hearts out to each other. 羨ll of that's over now...' The silence senshi told herself, 腺ecause you let yourself fall asleep when she was holding you....now she's going to know how you feel, and she's going to tell you to go away because she's in love with HIM.'
Chibi glanced at her friend, a little concerned. Even if Hotaru wasn't speaking aloud, she couldn't hide her ragged breathing and how her arms clutched her legs tighter with every passing second. 全he's that mad at me? Oh Hotaru, don't hate me... I just wanted to make you comfortable...' Hotaru let out a swift, uneven breath as she clutched her legs tight enough to make her knees crack. 前h gods, no... don't take it out on yourself... I better say something...' "Puu said that Helios was asking about me again." Chibi remarked, saying the first thing that came to her head, but instantly wondered if it was the right thing to do.
Hotaru gave Chibi a look as if she'd just struck her, her mouth hanging open for a fraction of a second before she caught herself, only nodding in response. 全he's telling me about HIM...' Hotaru thought, mentally hissing the last word, not even wanting to think his name. 全he's doing it because she wants me to know she's still in love with him, and that thing at the park was just a friendly thing...' She swallowed hard and rested her forehead on her knees now, looking down at the floor, her face hidden. 選'll never be able to be anything more than a friend to her. She's always going to see me as just a friend. No matter what I do...god, don't start here, you're only going to embarrass yourself.' But she couldn't hold it in anymore, and the tears started to drip from her eyes, quickly being absorbed into her tights. Hotaru daren't make a sound.
"I want to go back and see him soon," Chibi said, looking out the window, only trying to make Hotaru happy. She figured that the reason Hotaru was so upset was that they were so physically close to each other and she'd gotten uncomfortable. "I wonder what our wedding is going to be like?" The pink haired girl mused aloud, closing her eyes to picture the event. "I want lots of flowers, and music, and everyone's going to be invited." She paused to consider something, tilting her head, "And I can have a really big cake, cus I know Usagi's going to be a pig and eat it all."
Hotaru started to shake, 糎hy is she doing this to me?' the tears were flowing harder now and she had to give everything she had to avoid sobbing loudly and running out of the room. 選s she trying to hurt me? I didn't think she'd do that...did I make her that mad? Oh, Chibi don't do this to me...please!' But, she only nodded, fighting to keep her sniffles silent as she listened to her friend continue.
"Oh, and a really big dress. I want one that's pink and white with little yellow bunnies on the veil, so he has to laugh when he kisses me." Chibi smiled faintly at the thought, but only for effect. Her heart wasn't in it. She was only saying what she thought Hotaru wanted to hear, and looking out the window, she didn't notice that the black haired girl cringed and tightened her hands into fists at the mention of a kiss. Chibi-Usa continued, "Then comes the honeymoon...where do you think he and I should go?"
Hotaru thought for a moment, knowing full well where she wanted to send Helios, but only shrugged her shoulders. She would be nice....she had to be, Chibi loved him, and she had no choice but to accept that. Her friend was happy with this guy, and she would be happy for her. Even if it killed her.
"I want somewhere romantic..." Chibi-Usa said, making her best effort to sound wistful, and dreamy, "Because...you know, honey moon stuff." That was the straw that broke the camel's back. Hotaru simply couldn't take it any more. Giving in to her body's desires, she simply let go and allowed herself to sob. It terrified Chibi; it didn't seem human, so much agony was reserved for the damned. It was followed by a short, but loud scream as Hotaru slammed her fist into the floor in frustration with herself and the situation. A soft, sickening cracking sound issued from the blow, but it was completely disregarded. "Hotaru....?" Chibi asked carefully, as a tear soaked face raised from to look upon her. Hotaru's eyes were bloodshot, and her skin was discolored from the tears and the dirt that was on the knees of her tights from falling earlier.
"What, Chibi-Usa? What?" Hotaru managed between sobs, angry, but not at her friend. "Want advice on what you should do with HIM!?" That scared Chibi-Usa, who had frightening flash backs of Mistress 9, and the sheer destructive nature that Hotaru possessed. Unable to control herself, Hotaru bawled loudly, though Usagi's faint conversation continued in the background. "I can't take it anymore....I can't....I just can't!"
"Take what Hotaru!? You've been mean to me ever since the park! You get mad at me cus you fall asleep, and then tell me that you didn't mean to! You didn't know how happy it made me for you to show how much you trusted me!" Chibi was just as agitated as Hotaru now, and was speaking before she thought. 前h god, that's only going to make her mad...please don't hurt yourself anymore... Please....'
"What?! You got mad and ran away when I told you I was sorry! I just was so comfortable with you, and so happy to be around you that I fell asleep! I said I was sorry!" Hotaru was too worked up to grasp the situation, normally very keen on things, she simply couldn't see where their messages got mixed up. "I didn't mean to!"
"You....trusted me?" Chibi's voice dropped from a yell to a whisper. 選t wasn't a mistake...oh gods what have I done?!' "Hotaru...oh no, no, no...gods no..." she approached the black haired girl who took a step back and stood defensively to the advancement. Her hand was already bruised a hideous, deep purple that marred her alabaster perfection. 前h Hotaru what have I done to you?! But....why did you get so mad? I have to know....' Swallowing hard, Chibi asked the question that could make, or break their friendship, "Why did you get so mad when I mention Helios?"
"Why...?" Hotaru asked, shaking her head, "Why...? Because you talk about him like he's some kind of god! You tell me all the time about how much you miss him, or how much you want to go back to see him." Ignoring the pain that started to throb in her fingers, Hotaru continued. "I'm jealous, Chibi-Usa. JEALOUS! I'm not perfect!"
Jealous of what?! You're my best friend, I tell you EVERYTHING! I tell you things I could never tell him!" Chibi shouted back, now aggravated by Hotaru's unneeded jealousy. "Why are you so upset?!" "Because I'm in love with you, that's why!" Hotaru yelled at Chibi before she could even realize what she'd said. Both of them stood in shock, Chibi-Usa's mouth dropping open as she stared at her friend who suddenly grew sheepish, turning away as she mumbled "Because I'm in love with you...I'm sorry, I'll go." Hotaru made a quick move for the exit, but Chibi was much faster than she and grabbed onto her injured arm, getting a short yelp of pain from Hotaru.
"I'm sorry....I didn't mean to....just don't go, please? Stay....let me get you some ice for that hand...stay here, ok? Promise me you'll stay here at least until I get back from the kitchen." Chibi looked at the now quiet Hotaru who only nodded and sat down on the bed, holding her bruised hand gingerly. Chibi-Usa ran from her room, nearly colliding with Usagi who was in the kitchen, still talking, and fixing herself a snack.
"What's all the yellin' about?" Usagi asked her daughter, who was already filling a bag full of ice. Her mouth was packed with chocolate donut, a glass of milk in her hand, and the phone cradled against her shoulder. "And what's with the ice?"
"God you're nosy," Chibi said, closing the freezer and putting the ice bag into a clean dish towel so it wouldn't freeze Hotaru's hand, "Hotaru hurt herself and I'm getting her ice. Why are you stuffing your face again?"
"Cus I'm hungry, duh." Usagi said over another bite of donut, mumbling something incoherent to the person on the other end of the phone before walking out of the kitchen and back to her room.
"You're always hungry..." The pink haired girl grumbled while she hurried back to her room to find Hotaru still seated on the bed, her tear stained face looking towards the floor. "Here you go.." Chibi offered the ice carefully to Hotaru who took it and applied it to her injury with a soft whine. "I'm sorry....Hotaru, really. I was only mad cus I thought you were upset that you fell asleep on me...that you were mad at yourself for accidently doing that...that you didn't trust me."
"I trust you..." Hotaru whispered quietly with a shake of her head, "Otherwise I wouldn't have done that...I thought you were mad at me for thinking I could be that way with you..." She sighed, adjusting the ice to not put pressure on the injury, "And...I guess after I told you what I did, you don't want to see me anymore. You're supposed to be with hi-" she caught herself, and released a controlled breath, "With Helios... I won't get in the way..."
"I...don't know if I want to be with him anymore." Chibi confessed, looking desperately at her friend, "It just feels so fake when I'm with him, like I have to be someone I'm not. It didn't used to be like that, I used to be able to talk with him for hours, and just enjoy being next to him...." Her red irises grew larger as she came to a realization, "Just....like I am with you."
"You....you mean that?" Hotaru asked carefully, being certain not to get her hopes up for nothing, demanding that she stay in control of her body. Chibi only nodded and placed a hand on Hotaru's cheek. The two looked into each other's eyes, Chibi-Usa's hand cupping her friend's face comfortingly.
"You really scared me, Hotaru...I've never seen you like that." Usa began, gently touching the shoulder of Hotaru's injured arm, "I don't want you to hurt...You should have hit me, I was the one being the jerk..."
"No..." The black haired girl shook her head, "I could never purposely hurt you like that. You know I care about you too much...I love you, Chibi..." She didn't expect an answer back, and was content with just saying it to let her friend know how she truly and honestly felt. "I'm going to have trouble explaining my hand to my parents," Hotaru quickly changed the subject, "They're going to worry abo-" She was quickly silenced by Chibi-Usa who placed a single, slender digit over her lips.
"I love you too Hotaru...Back to YFFH