Black Lily

Slowly Dawning

Written By | Series: Sailor Moon

Author’s notes and disclaimers: This is an extremely gratuitous use of the characters from Bishoujo Senshi Sailor Moon, copyright Takeuchi Naoko, Toei Animation and Kodansha Publishing. I thank them all for tolerating the creative efforts of their fans, or at least not noticing us. The situations presented in this story are copyright 1999, E. Friedman.

This story contains adult situations, which is why you want to read it, am I correct? So don’t complain about it later. Please, onegai, if you are a minor, or think you might be one, go away now…we both do not need the agita involved.

I’ve used the concept of the “uber-Rei” again, that is, she is the Rei of the anime, but has the experiences of the Rei of the manga. And just for good measure, as a sort of experiment, in this story Rei does *not* have a thing for Usagi. I thought it was time to see a story without that brooding dark cloud hanging over poor Rei’s head.

I’d like to thank Matt, who gives me all kinds of evil ideas; and to my own personal research assistant. You know who you are. :-)

All positive feedback, praise of me as an author, person, or lover can be directed to yuricon@gmail.com

The Fanfic Revolution  – because hentai fanfic does not have to suck.

 

 

Slowly Dawning

 

 

 

Prologue

 

 

Minako slammed her locker shut with a sense of satisfaction. Practice had been excellent – even the freshman volleyball squad was looking good. She slipped her shoes on, grabbed her books and stepped lightly out of the school. She could hear her name called from over by the gym and turned to wave at the three girls who ran to meet her.

“Aino – san!” called out a small dark-haired girl with a short haircut. She seemed almost boyish, even in their regulation school uniform. She was waving wildly and Minako grinned at her enthusiasm. Furiko was the newest member of the volleyball team and had a tendency to worship Minako. A tendency Minako was rather enjoying, if truth be told.

“Furiko-chan, Hannah-san, Yuki-chan!” Minako waved back at her friends from the club and waited as they caught up to her. The next few minutes was a riot of exchanged encouragements, gossip and laughter, as they analyzed the day’s practice, each other and the boy’s team. The four girls passed out of the school grounds and onto the street. They paused for a moment, not wanting to leave each other.

“Going to another study meeting?” Yuki asked archly. She had an ongoing joke with Minako that the so-called study meetings were nothing more than a front for meetings with a boyfriend or two. “What are you studying for, anyway? You’re already a junior in high school…” Her tone was more than a little peeved. Yuki had only known Minako for a year, but she was jealous of these other friends who took her away every day.

“There’s still the university exam.” Minako said simply. She knew what Yuki really meant, but there was no way she was going to explain the truth to her friend.

Yuki laughed loudly. “You’re going to university?! I don’t believe it! Ow!” The last was directed at Furiko, who had loyally bashed Yuki with her backpack in defense of Minako.

Minako smiled her thanks at Furiko, who dimpled in response.

Furiko now turned on Yuki with some heat. “Stop trashing Aino-san! She’s smarter than you are!”

Hannah, a transfer student from England, put one hand on Furiko’s shoulder and spoke quietly. “Please Furiko-san,” she still used the honorifics a bit hesitantly, “Yuki-san didn’t mean it.” Furiko backed down, but she was clearly ready to leap to Minako’s defense in a second.

Minako nodded. Yuki really didn’t mean it – it was just the way she was. Brash, loud and headstrong, Yuki was a real leader on the volleyball court, but could be a pain sometimes off of it.

Yuki shrugged indifferently and began to turn away from the others, but Minako held her back. “Yuki-chan, can you come shopping with me this weekend? I need a new dress for the spring dance and I’d like you to meet someone.”

Yuki’s face lit up and she agreed eagerly. Minako let go of the younger girl and pushed her gently away. “I really have to go, now.” she said lightly. She turned towards the Juuban shopping center and waved over her shoulder as Yuki called her farewell. Furiko ran a few steps to catch up with her, followed by the tall, and nearly silent Hannah.

“Can we walk with you?” Furiko panted.

“Sure.” Minako said. “Why? Got something on your mind?”

Furiko didn’t answer, but the slight blush on her cheeks betrayed her. Minako smiled but did not speak. She’d had her own crushes as a freshman, she remembered. For that matter, she thought, she still had them now. It wasn’t a bad feeling, she acknowledged, being looked up to.

The three girls walked silently and Minako thought about her new friends. She had joined the volleyball club once again when she entered high school. It had felt right, somehow. She was surprised how easily it all came back to her. As a sophomore, she had been asked to join the senior team and it was with great pleasure that she had become co-captain this year, the youngest captain of the team ever. Furiko, now silent and brooding at her side, was the best of the new members. Hannah, a junior like Minako, had come from England halfway through the year and had turned out to be an old hand at competitive volleyball. Her height was a great advantage, even if her Japanese was a little slow and stilted at times. She was as quiet as Yuki was loud.

“Aino-san,” Furiko blurted out suddenly, “why don’t you have a boyfriend?”

“Furiko-san!” Hannah was shocked at the younger girl’s lack of tact.

Minako hid her surprise in a loud laugh. “Like I can fit them in my busy social schedule…”

Furiko interrupted her. “Really, Aino-san! You’re beautiful and good at sports and smart…”

Smart? thought Minako. Well, my grades *have* improved…thank you Ami-chan! Minako patted Furiko’s shoulder and grinned. “I guess I haven’t found my Prince yet, that’s all.” Furiko stared at her intensely and Minako became a bit uncomfortable at the dark eyes boring into her. Furiko had hit a sore point with Minako. She had dated, of course, and as often as possible. But it never worked out. Either she ended up canceling one too many dates, or lying to the boy wasn’t worth the effort. It wasn’t like she could tell anyone why she had to run off. “Oh, sorry – I have to go! I’m Sailor Venus and there’s an emergency!” Minako could feel the heat in her face, and cursed her own fair coloring.

Hannah smacked Furiko’s arm lightly, drawing her attention away from Minako. “I cannot believe how rude you are being, Furiko-san.” She tried to lighten the moment, as was her habit. Furiko looked up suddenly and reddened in embarrassment. She bowed to Minako formally.

“I apologize, Aino-san, I was very rude. Please forgive me.”

Minako waved it all away with a laugh. “Forget it. Look, I have to go now…I’m late as it is. I’ll see you tomorrow at practice, right?”

Furiko nodded, her brows furrowed, then her face cleared. “You promised to show me your signature move, right?”

Minako smiled slyly. “Sure, I’ll show you – but don’t think its so easy to do.”

Furiko laughed and walked off arm in arm with Hannah. Minako noticed that Hannah had braided daisies into her hair today. It was a little joke between them. One of the girls on the team had mentioned that Hannah’s name meant “flower” in Japanese. Now she always wore a floral pattern, or a flower somewhere on her person. Hannah was sweet…except on the volleyball court. Minako smiled at the thought and then, running, caught the bus to Hikawa shrine. But Furiko’s question stuck in her mind, like an unpleasant rumor.

 

Chapter 1

 

Minako was a little out of breath by the time she reached the shrine…but then, she had taken the steps two at a time. All that time training as a Senshi – and on the court – was really making a difference.

She slid the door to Rei’s room aside and announced her presence to a completely silent room.

Everyone looked up at Minako in some surprise.

Ami glanced at her watch. “Is it that late already?” she asked.

Minako nodded. “Five o’clock, on the dot. I’m getting better!” she made a “V” for victory and winked at her friends happily.

Makoto made some room at the table for Minako. “Have some food – you’re probably starving after practice.”

“You’ve got that right!” Minako did not have to be asked twice. As she ate, she reflected on the relationships she had with these friends. In any other company, polite refusals would have to be followed with polite insistence. Minako took a big bite of a sandwich and chewed contentedly, as Makoto returned to her studies. Not here. Here, she was more at home than, well, at home. This was so different than her friendships from the volleyball team. There she was a figure of authority, a role model…here, she was just one of the girls. Minako sighed with satisfaction. These friends really understood her, better than anyone else ever could. Minako regarded her companions pleasantly.

Ami was reading, periodically taking notes, Minako noticed, Rei was practicing calligraphy. Makoto was working on a math problem, chewing thoughtfully on a pencil…

“Where’s Usagi?” Minako asked suddenly.

Makoto pointed over to the corner without looking up. Usagi lay, curled up in a ball, sound asleep. Minako’s first reaction was to be annoyed – the slacker! But then she thought of the youma they had destroyed last night, and how much energy it had taken for Usagi to defeat it. Eh, Minako shrugged, let her sleep.

Minako pulled out a history text and plunged into the not-terribly fascinating world of modern history (wasn’t that an oxymoron?) In a few minutes, silence fell once again over the room, broken only by little noises, and Usagi’s deep breathing.

An hour had passed when Usagi awoke. Spluttering, she demanded to know why they hadn’t awakened her. Ami commented, rather dryly, that they last time they had, she had demanded to know why they didn’t let her sleep. Usagi laughed at that and scooted up to the table to return to her studies.

Minako looked around at the faces round her. Even preoccupied with their studies, each girl’s personality was distinct. She reflected on the changes they had all undergone over the last several years. Even she and Usagi, once the most recalcitrant of students, could put in an hour or two or three, if absolutely necessary. And it showed in their grades. Usagi and she were no longer at the bottom of their classes – very nearly a miracle in Minako’s eyes.

They continued to study until night had fallen. As they prepared to split up for the evening, Minako thought about her request of Yuki, and turned to Rei.

“Can you meet me for lunch on Saturday? I have a friend I want to introduce to you.”

“Oh, is that Yuki-chan?” Usagi asked inquisitively. “She was nice. Not as nice as Hannah-san, though.”

“Yes, Hannah-san is very sweet and a little shy. I though Rei-chan and Yuki-chan might get along.” Minako winked at Usagi where Rei couldn’t see her. Usagi stifled a laugh and winked back.

“And why is that?” Usagi gave Minako the straight line she had requested.

“Because they’re both loudmouthed and rude.” Minako ducked just in time to avoid being hit by Rei, who had just managed to get in a quick to kick to Usagi’s bottom. Usagi squeaked and jumped away, giggling at the well-worn joke, grabbing Minako as she ran and pulling her away with her.

“12 o’clock at the Crown!” Minako yelled over her shoulder at Rei.

“I’ll be there – you’d better not be late!” Rei shouted after them.
Chapter 2

 

Minako stifled a yawn and tried to watch attentively as another fifteen minutes crawled by. Rei had invited her to see an exhibition of Kyudo, Japanese archery. Minako knew that Rei studied Kyudo, in fact, had seen her deadly aim with her Flame Sniper, but had never seen the incredibly formal Kyudo itself. It was elegant, graceful…and as interesting as watching paint dry.

Minako found her mind wandering. Yuki and Rei had hit it off immediately, as she had suspected. Its a good thing, she thought, when your friends like each other. The three of them had shopped all afternoon, and parted with promises for another outing together. Most importantly, Yuki had liked Rei. Hopefully, once Yuki knew who Minako’s close friends were, she wouldn’t be so jealous. Minako could hardly tell Yuki that in reality she was Sailor Venus, one of the Sailor Senshi. What would Yuki have thought, knowing she was at lunch with Sailor Mars and Sailor Venus! Minako stifled a laugh, looking around to see if anyone noticed. No one had.

At last Rei stood and took her place in front of the target. She kneeled gracefully, preparing herself for her trial. She placed her bow in the proper position, and drew. A minute went by, then another. Minako felt sweat run down her forehead and tried very hard to relax. Rei looked calm and peaceful, her elbow up, arm pulled back, face serene. Time passed and Minako found herself straining forward, looking for any change in Rei’s posture. There was none. Rei seemed immovable, carved in stone. Minako was completely enrapt. Rei was truly magnificent to watch. Her hair, pulled back, lay heavily along her back, her shoulders were firm and her back straight. Minako realized she was holding her breath. She took in the tranquil expression on Rei’s face and marveled at the darker girl’s features. Where she was used to seeing anger or annoyance, now sat repose. Minako was suddenly engrossed by Rei’s beauty.

With a twang and a sigh, Rei loosed the arrow from her bow and Minako gasped with the rest of the onlookers. The arrow was true and struck in the center of the target. A cry of pleasure went up from the audience and Rei stepped back to allow the next archer up.

When the exhibition had ended, Minako met Rei in front of the school and offered to walk her home.

“That was truly amazing Rei-chan!” Minako gushed. She noticed Rei color faintly at the compliment and she continued. “I always thought that stuff was kind of boring, but watching you…wow!”

Rei demurred. “I’m not very good. My teacher – he’s really excellent.”

“I’m not talking about your archery.” Minako said before she caught herself. Rei turned and looked at her sharply. Minako laughed. “All that Flame Sniper work has really paid off, huh?”

Rei agreed hastily. The two girls walked along chatting about nothing in particular.

Minako heaved a terrific sigh and put her hands behind her head. “Rei-chan, when was the last time you went on a date?”

Rei looked confused at the sudden change of topic, but said, “I don’t know – last month, I guess. Why?”

“Did you go out with him long?”

“Not really. Why?”

“Why don’t we have steady boyfriends?” Minako cried out to the universe. She grabbed Rei around the shoulders. “Look at us! We’re young, we’re beautiful, we’re talented…” she pinched Rei’s cheek and sighed again.

“Actually,” Rei admitted reluctantly, “I had to stop seeing him. I had too many duties, as a Senshi, at the shrine…I had to keep canceling dates.” she sighed wistfully. “The last time, I actually ran out on him while we were watching a movie…and it had just gotten to the romantic part.”

“We’re the girlfriends from hell.” Minako agreed ruefully.

 

 

Chapter 3

 

Minako walked along listening to Yuki and Furiko arguing. They were beginning to sound like Usagi and Rei and it was getting on her nerves. She needed to get a fresh perspective on whatever it was that was bothering her. It wasn’t that she didn’t get date offers, it was just, well, the boys were so dull. It wasn’t like she could tell these guys who she really was, what she really did when she ran out of a movie, or a picnic. Her excuses were becoming lamer, too. And she was beginning to brood over it – never a good sign. She didn’t know why Furiko’s question had so irritated her, but it certainly had.

She sighed and looked up. She was walking along the street that Ami’s apartment building was on. Ami may not be not the best one in the world to discuss love with, but at least she could tell Ami what was on her mind. No need to prevaricate with another Senshi. I wonder how Ami-chan deals with it the stress, she thought. I mean, even Ami must have felt it…

Making a feeble excuse about homework, Minako left the two younger girls and entered Ami’s building.

Ami came to the door to greet Minako, looking pleased, if puzzled.

“Minako-chan! What can I do for you? Won’t you make yourself comfortable?” Ami led the way to her small bedroom and held the door open for Minako.

“Oh,” sighed Minako wearily, “I just wanted to talk to someone without having to lie.”

Ami looked at her quizzically, but nodded. “I know what you mean. Let me make some tea – I’ll be right back.”

Minako sat at the low table in Ami’s room and supported her face in her hands. A low beep came from the computer on the desk. Minako looked up at it, as a message flashed onto the screen.

“Hey Merc! Have I got something for you!” it said, with a smiley face.

Minako laid her head down on her arms and sighed.

Ami returned with tea. She placed pot and cups on the table, then minimized the message on the computer, before sitting down with Minako.

“So…” Ami prompted.

“So, I’ve been thinking. Do you know the reputation I have in school right now? I’m “Minako the tease.” Do you know why? Because every boy I go out with, I end up having to make some stupid excuse and leave early or break dates or…” Minako broke off, exasperated.

Ami nodded. “Well, obviously, I don’t date as much as you and Rei-chan, but I know what you mean. The last time I wanted to meet one of my online friends for lunch I…Minako-chan? What are you looking at?”

Minako sat, staring over Ami’s shoulder, her mouth wide open in disbelief. Ami whirled around, her hand over her mouth, only to see the final pixels come into focus, of a full color picture of Sailor Venus, only partially clothed, head thrown back with pleasure, fingering herself in a lascivious manner. Ami leapt for the computer, but Minako was faster and grabbed the mouse away from her.

“No you don’t!” Minako yelled, as she held Ami away from the mouse. A second picture came up on the screen, this time Sailor Mars and Sailor Mercury, both topless. Minako felt her eyebrow twitching as she turned to stare at Ami, whose face was now as red as Mars’ fuku.

“You ecchi!” Minako shouted.

“It’s not what it looks like, Minako-chan…” Ami began a bit desperately.

“Then what exactly *is* it?” Minako said, feeling a giggle well up within her..

“When I logged onto this network, I used the name Mercury,” Ami lunged for the mouse, but Minako held her off. Ami blew hair out of her eyes. She tried to stop the next picture, but Minako batted her hands away from the keyboard. This one, Minako found, was an animated picture of herself and Usagi, well, Sailor Moon… oh my god! She turned to an increasingly embarrassed Ami.

Ami spoke quickly. “So, someone thought I was, well, a fan of Sailor Mercury and he sent me some pictures…I thought it was funny, so I kept them. Now he, um, Fanboy1, sends me pictures he finds of us…” her voice petered out, and she dropped her eyes, mortified.

Minako could not hold it in one moment longer. She burst out laughing. She laughed hysterically as a picture of Makoto and Ami, dressed in pajamas, and snuggling, appeared on the screen. She laughed as another picture of herself, in what appeared to be a physically impossible position came onto the screen. Finally, weak with laughter, Minako lowered herself into the chair in front of the desk. When she lifted her eyes once more, she was confronted by a deeply disturbing picture of Chibi Moon. Minako shook her head and turned to look at Ami.

“I cannot believe this. Ami-chan! Who knew you were a closet otaku? A hentai otaku, no less! And here I was, wondering how you dealt with the stress of keeping our secret secret! ” Minako held her stomach, which hurt from laughing. “So, you’ve been keeping this stuff?” she waved her hand at the pictures, which now included a very well done drawing of several of them in bathing suits. Minako giggled at the image. “I knew you had a sex drive somewhere under that cool exterior.”

Ami’s face couldn’t possibly have turned redder. “Um, yes. Please,” she lifted her eyes to Minako’s, “please don’t tell anyone, please?” There was a look of fierceness in that gaze, but Minako just grinned.

“Only if you let me see them.”

“What?” Ami was stunned.

“I want to see them all.” Minako kept grinning and slowly, Ami answered it with a smile of her own.

“Are you sure? Some of them are pretty rude.” Ami pulled up another chair next to Minako’s and took the proffered mouse.

“Start with those.” Minako giggled again, naughtily.

“Ecchi.” Ami clicked a few times and opened a file called, not inappropriately, “Venus.”

If anyone had passed that room in the next few hours, they would have heard a variety of snorts and laughter, punctuated by squeals of outrage and shock and of course, the odd “ecchi!” thrown in for good measure.

When Minako left Ami’s she felt as if a weight had been lifted from her, even the night air felt good against her face. With friends like these, who needed dumb old boys anyway? She laughed into the night breeze and jogged towards home.

As she lay in her bed that night, Minako recalled the pictures she had seen of herself and the other Senshi. There was something in them, she thought. Something their fans had seen that they themselves never had. Maybe love wasn’t so far away after all. Her last thought before she slept was of dark hair and dark eyes and postures that were more than a little suggestive.

 

 

Chapter 4

 

“Go where?” Makoto asked, poking her head past the door to Rei’s room.

“A new Western-style bookstore has opened up in Juuban.” exclaimed Ami. “They’re having a 1/2 price off sale on many titles and they even have a coffee bar in the store!” Minako grinned at her friend’s excitement – it wasn’t this often Ami became that enthused about anything.

Usagi yawned hugely. “A bookstore? Does it have manga?”

“Sure!” Rei interrupted. “I saw an ad that said it would have the largest selection of manga in town. And music too, and videos!” Usagi perked up a bit a this and so did Minako.

“Let’s go and see what its like, then.” Makoto spoke decisively and the others echoed her words with a collective “Let’s go!”

Ami was not wrong. The store was huge – and stocked with an amazing array of books. Rei found herself wandering in the divination section – she had no idea there were that many books on astrology. She reached for a book on scrying and began to page through it.

The flash of a blond head caught her eye. Usagi and…Makoto. Rei smiled to see the taller girl lean down and look at whatever Usagi pointed to. It must be something, Rei thought, as Makoto’s face turned red and the two girls began to snigger. Rei turned her attention back to the scrying book.

A few moments passed when Rei, who had now picked up a book on candle magic, could hear Usagi’s stage whisper calling Ami over. Once again, Rei watched, as Usagi, now covering her laughter with one hand, pointed out a book to Ami, who immediately blushed and turned away. How utterly childish, Rei thought.

“Haruka-san! Michiru-san!” Makoto’s voice broke through Rei’s reverie and she spied the two older women, looking as stylish as always. They greeted Ami, Usagi and Makoto cheerfully, then inquired what they were all laughing at.

Rei turned to her book again, but was startled by Haruka’s loud, juicy laugh and Michiru’s tinkling, teasing one. Now she was intrigued. But, Rei muttered to herself, I will not act so immaturely. Really – they’ll have the whole store over in a second. But she watched as Usagi ran away then reappeared, dragging a reluctant Minako with her, to join the group of women, now heavily involved in reading the book titles and making giggling, sniggering comments. Minako took one look at the book titles and leaned forward laughing. She lifted her head and looked around. Spying Rei, Minako waved her over furiously.

Rei joined the group, noting the titters as she approached. Rei also noted that they all stood in the self-help section. What could possibly be so funny there? Usagi, looking like the cat that ate the canary pointed slowly to a group of books at hip height. Rei leaned over to read the titles out loud and began to blush furiously. “Mars and Venus on a Date,” “Mars and Venus in Love,” “Mars and Venus in the Bedroom…”

She stopped abruptly as Haruka commented dryly, “Well, at least they got the order right.”

Rei felt herself turn redder as she caught Minako’s eyes. She turned to retreat to the divination section when Minako’s voice sounded just behind her ear. “You could do worse, you know.” and Minako laughed as she turned away to drag Usagi over to the music section.

Rei found her eyes wandering now, no longer drawn by the book she held, but by the image of two blue eyes laughing and breath of an idea that would not sit still within her, or behave itself at all.

 

Chapter 5

 

“Rei-chan – do you have any plans today?” Minako asked as they met on the street and headed towards Hikawa Shrine.

“I have a test tomorrow that I need to study for, but it’s in history, so I should do fine. Why?”

Minako shrugged. She wasn’t sure why, except she wanted to spend more time with Rei. Alone. “I was just thinking that we hardly ever get to spend time together.”

“Minako,” Rei commented, “we’re together almost every afternoon. You’re over my house nearly every day!”

“You know what I mean!” Minako’s eyes flashed at Rei.

Rei found her breath caught in her chest. She looked again at Minako and smiled. “Well, what do you want to do, then?”

Minako turned her eyes away and muttered, “Lay you down on a futon and…”

“What did you say?” Rei demanded.

Minako had no idea where that had come from. She blushed and waved her hand dismissively. “Oh, just commenting on the weather – we have a cold front coming on.”

They walked in silence, each wondering what they other was thinking.

Minako had a very low tension tolerance. She broke first. “What are you thinking?”

“What are *you* thinking?” Rei shot back.

“I’m thinking that Crystal Tokyo is a long time away. It’s a long time and who’s going to be with us along the way?”

“What do you mean?” This was *not* what Rei had expected.

“I mean,” Minako turned to Rei. “Who else but us, I mean all of us, are going to be around, that we know, a thousand years from now?”

Rei stopped, then looked off into the distance. “I hadn’t ever thought about that.”

“I hadn’t either, until now.” Minako took Rei’s hand. “You’ve probably been told this before, but you are very beautiful, Hino Rei.”

Rei reeled at the non sequitor, then reddened, but said nothing. They walked, holding hands for a while, then Minako let go of Rei. They came to the steps of the Shrine and Minako sat down on the bottom step, laying her bookbag on her lap.

Rei sat next to her and the two women stared ahead for a while.

Minako sighed. “You’re going to make me work at this, aren’t you?” and she turned to look into Rei’s eyes.

“I don’t know what you me….” Rei was cut off as Minako leaned forward and kissed her. Rei’s eyes widened, then closed.

Minako’s voice was quiet when they broke apart. “I mean, Rei-chan, that we will become very lonely if we fall in love with some regular guy and then watch him die. And then do it again, and again. And who else do we have that we can be ourselves with, but each other?”

Rei stood and held out a hand to Minako, then helped her up from the stairs. They walked up the steps and entered the Shrine precincts. Rei slid open the door and let Minako in first. She closed the door behind her and watched Minako walk ahead of her. Long legs, athletic body, she could do worse, indeed.

“Have you ever wondered the kind of person you’ll fall in love will be like?” Rei asked Minako, then laughed, as she realized just *who* she had asked. “Of course you have…”

Rei stepped up behind Minako and put her arms around the blonde. “I wonder how many times a person can fall in love?” Minako breathed, then leaned back into Rei’s body.

“In a thousand years?” Rei asked, close to Minako’s ear.

“In seventeen.” Minako laughed, then caught her breath as Rei placed several soft kisses on her neck.

Rei leaned into the junction between Minako’s neck and shoulder. Minako pulled away and turned to face Rei. Her hair hung, dark and thick across her shoulders and Minako pulled it away from Rei’s face. She leaned forward and kissed Rei again, holding herself against Rei, until she could feel Rei’s arms pull her in.

They sat on the edge of the bed and Minako found herself staring into dark eyes, which looked at her with a certain amusement.

“What?” Minako asked, stroking her hand along Rei’s neck, finding the pulse, watching as Rei’s mouth moved.

“You seemed so intense the other day. And now you seem intense again, but in a different way. What are you thinking about?”

Minako smiled at Rei. “I was upset about the fact that I might never find anyone to love. But now I realize,” Minako ran a hand across Rei’s lips, “That it doesn’t matter, because I’ll always have you and the others to love.” Rei nodded and pulled Minako in close. The two women embraced, reveling in the warmth and softness of the other.

“A thousand years is a very long time, isn’t it?” Minako breathed into Rei’s ear.

“Time enough for more than one love.” Rei agreed. She shivered as Minako untied the tie from around her neck, and began to unfasten the buttons beneath it. Minako shoved gently, until Rei fell backwards onto the bed. Minako laid herself on top of the other girl and looked down at her, grinning.

“Now what?” Rei asked, as Minako gazed down at her, answering the smile she saw with one of her own.

“I was just remembering the day that I came with you to your school.” Minako giggled.

Rei groaned. “Don’t remind me – it took days, maybe weeks before the other girls stopped teasing me about you.”

“Was I really that bad?” Minako pouted adorably.

Rei thought for a moment. “No, not really. I hadn’t realized just how stuffy we all were, how formal and stuck up.” She met Minako’s eyes. “You were like a breath of fresh air in the school.”

Minako leaned closer and Rei pulled her face down to meet her own. This kiss was long and sweet. Neither girl moved for the longest time. Rei ran her fingers through Minako’s hair and pulled it closer to her face, inhaling the scent of fresh air and shampoo.

“You even smell like fresh air.”

“And you smell like incense.” Minako moved her lips close to Rei’s ear and whispered the words into it. She brushed the ear lightly with her lips, and felt Rei shiver in reaction. Minako let her tongue trail lightly down along the earlobe, circling Rei’s earring. Rei moaned as Minako drew her tongue lightly into the lowest corner of Rei’s ear. Minako giggled at Rei’s reaction and the dark eyes that turned on her mournfully.

“Laughing at me already?”

“Laughing because I feel good.” Minako kissed Rei on the nose. “You make me feel good.”

Rei’s eyes softened as she looked at the blonde woman now laying by her side. “Really? Do you mean it?” Minako nodded and Rei continued. “Do you know – no one has ever said that to me before?”

Minako stroked Rei’s cheek and gazed at her friend. “I mean it Rei-chan.” She pulled close to Rei and pressed her lips against Rei’s. Her lips parted slightly in a smile, then her tongue traced the corner of Rei’s mouth. Rei opened her mouth and their tongues touched gently, teasing each other.

Minako felt a floodgate open up within her. Her spine was electrified with the touch of Rei against her. Her fingers felt as if they were on fire. She finished unbuttoning the vest Rei wore and helped her out of it.

Rei slapped her hands away, and pushed Minako back against the bed. She leaned into Minako’s neck once again, nipping at it, then gently, almost tenderly, biting Minako’s windpipe. Minako let herself melt into the feeling, as Rei possessed her. She couldn’t have said how they got from there to a state of complete nakedness, whether the clothes melted away or were taken off layer by layer, but now, now they lay next to each other, touching, caressing and kissing. Minako laid her head against Rei’s chest, stroking the soft skin with her face and hair.

Rei laughed. “You’ll get your hair all tangled up if you do that.” Minako said nothing, but closed her eyes and felt the skin beneath her. “I guess I’ll just have to brush it out for you.”

Minako stopped and smiled. “What a nice idea. Can I brush yours?” Rei agreed and Minako allowed her eyes to close again. She turned her head so it lay against one breast, the other in front of her. She put a hand out tentatively to it, gently brought it to her mouth. Rei stiffened as Minako’s mouth met her nipple. She could feel herself reach for Minako and draw her closer. Minako responded by placing one hand on Rei’s hip, the other holding her breast, stroking the soft skin. She licked gently at Rei’s nipple, then pulled her in and sucked at her hard. Rei’s body bucked, then relaxed. Minako opened her eyes and watched Rei’s face as she repeated this maneuver again, and again.

Rei was magnificent, Minako thought as she felt the leg beneath her hand, then ran her hand along the tight buttock. Minako continued to minister to Rei’s nipple, while feeling along Rei’s hip, legs and ass. She began to squeeze Rei, who thrust herself closer and close to Minako, rubbing herself against the blonde.

Minako laughed at this. She sat up and laid Rei flat on the bed, straddling her. Rei moaned furiously, as she felt Minako rub herself against her, shifting back and forth. The sensation of Minako’s soft pussy grinding into her, leaving a trail of wetness, made Rei see red. Minako reached down and took Rei’s hands and brought them to her breasts. Both women were moaning now, lost in the sensation of nerve-endings and desire.

“Wait. Please.” Rei gasped, as Minako reached down to touch her. Minako looked into Rei’s eyes and waited, as Rei squirmed a bit, reaching for a drawer at the side of the bed. Minako’s eyes widened a bit as Rei pulled out a not particularly realistic vibrator. Minako took it and looked at the happy face on it. She looked at Rei with a lopsided grin.

“What can I say? It’s a happy vibrator…” Rei’s voice jumped an octave as Minako switched the vibrator on and immediately placed it against Rei. All Rei could do was moan. Minako liked this a great deal. She moved the vibrator against Rei, then slowly, agonizingly slowly, placed it inside Rei, who now was lost in her own world of pleasure. Minako lowered her head to Rei’s pussy, then softly, almost imperceptibly, began to kiss Rei.

For a while there was no sound other than Rei’s moans. Then Minako grinned, “hmmed” and swirled her tongue around Rei’s clit. The dark-haired girl almost leapt off the bed at this.

“Mina-chan..” Rei grasped for Minako’s hair. “Beautiful…” Rei pulled Minako in to her and Minako let her tongue caress Rei’s clit. Slowly, slowly… she could feel Rei tensing beneath her. Pushing the vibrator deeper into Rei, Minako began to suck on her hard, until a nearly inaudible scream let her know that Rei was coming for her. Minako found herself moaning uncontrollably as Rei pounded the bed with her fists and bucked underneath her.

When Rei relaxed, Minako took one of Rei’s hands and placed it between her own legs. Long, graceful fingers found her slit and began to play with the toy offered. Rei scraped one nail up Minako’s slit, then dragged it across the most sensitive part of her. Minako felt herself squeal with the stimulation. Minako kneeled by Rei’s head and Rei turned to face her.

“Please, lick me.” Minako breathed, and straddled herself over Rei’s face. Rei did, and with a skill that left Minako wondering at her friend. Rei lapped up every ounce of wetness that Minako had, and then went searching for more. Minako had her head thrown back and reached down to help Rei. Rei let her tongue slide out of Minako, then draw up to where Minako’s fingers played in her own wetness. Tongue and fingers slid across Minako’s clit until she couldn’t stand it any longer. Rei seemed to understand, and once again entered Minako. Minako’s orgasm crashed through her, and she found herself pinching her own nipple, as Rei thrust deeply into her.

Minako laid down next to Rei and took her face in her hands. They kissed, long and tenderly, kissing each other’s eyes and lips. Minako stared into Rei’s dark eyes, which looked back at her, soft and warm.

“You do make me feel good.” Minako said.

“And you make me feel good.” Rei agreed. She rolled onto her back and Minako lifted herself on one arm to watch her.

“What are you thinking?” Minako asked.

“I’m thinking that a thousand years may not be long enough.” Rei said and turned to Minako, smiling, filling Minako with warmth, like a slowly dawning sun over a cold planet.

 

Epilogue

Minako grabbed her shoes and slipped them on as she ran out the door. She caught up with Furiko just as the younger girl separated from a few other friends from the freshman team.

Minako walked up behind Furiko and put an hand on one shoulder. Furiko beamed up at her. Minako smiled and waved her forward.

The two girls walked along the road, both listening to their footsteps, lost in thought.

Minako looked down a the younger girl, who looked up with an uncertain smile.

“Thank you for walking with me today, Furiko-chan.”

Furiko’s smile widened. “It’s always my pleasure, Aino-san.”

“Really, I wish you would call me Minako.”

“Minako-san.” Furiko said, quickly.

Minako watched, as the younger girl tried to not to throw her arms around herself in sheer joy. Was I so easy to please? Minako thought, but then smiled at herself. Maybe even easier to please than that.

They walked into the park and continued down a path, until they reached a bench, in a sunny patch. They sat and watched the breeze play in the trees.

Furiko broke the silence. “You said you wanted to speak to me?”

Minako was startled out of her reverie. She had been thinking about Rei, as she had left her at the Shrine the night before. Rei’s hair was glowing softly in the light of the sacred flame, and her face was flushed with passion. Standing at the door to the Flame’s room, Minako had kissed her happily and been rewarded with that slow, stunning smile. Minako echoed that smile now, as she turned to the younger girl. Furiko looked at her with a mixture of trepidation and anticipation.

“Do you remember what you asked me the other day?”

Furiko blushed furiously ad she looked down at her hands. “Yes, and I’m sorry about that – I don’t know what came over me…”

Minako put a hand on her arm reassuringly. “Its okay. I’m not going to say it didn’t bother me, because it did, but now…” she looked up a the trees. “Sometimes love comes from places we don’t expect, you know, Furiko-chan?”

Furiko stared at her. “I don’t think I understand you, Minako-san.”

“I mean,” she smiled at the girl once more, who smiled in return, not even knowing why, “sometimes its the little things we miss. And then all of a sudden, it dawns on us that what we’re looking for is right next to us.”

Furiko’s mouth dropped open and her blush deepened. Minako decided to stop teasing the poor girl.

“Because of that question, I found someone to love that I had never even realized was right there. So, I wanted to thank you. And to say I am sorry. I can see that you really look up to me and I’m grateful for your adulation, but I’m not someone you should idolize.”

“But…” Furiko now looked thoroughly confused.

“I mean, Furiko, that there is someone out there for you. And I’m not that someone.” Minako’s voice was gentle. She stood and held out her hand, helping Furiko up from the bench. They continued down the path, together, but separate in their own thoughts.

Furiko spoke at last. “I think I understand what you’re saying, Minako-san.” Her voice was deliberate and she spoke slowly, choosing each word carefully. “And thank you for being so kind to such a foolish girl.” Minako opened her mouth, but Furiko help up a hand to stall her. “I realize that you are trying not to hurt my feelings and I appreciate that. Thank you.”

Minako let her mouth close. She shook her head in wonder. “Furiko-chan, you really are something special. And like I said, someone out there is right for you. In fact, I think I know someone who needs a person like you in her life right now.”

The two girls came around a corner to another clearing. Sitting under a tree were Hannah and Yuki. They looked up and greeted the two newcomers with enthusiasm. Minako led the way over, but remained standing.

“Yuki-chan, as my second, I have a favor to ask of you. Furiko-chan here, is, as you know a really promising recruit, but she needs alot of work on the basics. I don’t have time, what with my other duties. I don’t want her learning any bad habits, though. Can you be responsible for her and make sure she gets the work she needs?” Furiko watched Minako through this speech, her lips tightening a little, but she said nothing.

Yuki looked at Furiko, surprised. “Of course, Minako-san.” She replied formally, as she stood and bowed deeply. She turned to Furiko, with a strange expression, as if seeing her for the first time. Or, Minako thought, as if she was being allowed to look at her straight on for the first time.

Furiko bowed formally to Yuki, then said, “Yuki-sempai. I’m ready to begin whenever you are.” Yuki continued to gaze at the younger girl, then smiled a genuine, happy smile.

“How about now?” Yuki asked. Furiko grinned at her, then at Minako and nodded with enthusiasm.

The two girls took their leave, but not before Minako caught a final glance of Furiko, who had turned to wink at her over her shoulder. Minako laughed happily and sat herself down next to Hannah.

“That was a really nice thing you just did.” Hannah said in her soft voice.

“Well, if you hadn’t told me how Yuki-chan felt, I’m not sure I would have figured it out. So, it was a nice thing *we* did.” Minako shook hands with Hannah and laughed.

When Hannah excused herself, Minako stayed where she was and watched the sun’s rays glitter on the tree-lined trail.

The sun was turning red, reaching greedily for the horizon. She leaned against the tree, closed her eyes and thought about sitting here, a thousand years in the future, as the sun slowly set. On a pale face, with big dark eyes, a smile slowly dawned. Minako rose, brushed herself off, and headed without a backwards glance towards Hikawa Shrine. Her friends were waiting for her. Rei was waiting for her. The future was waiting for her. Minako threw her head back and laughed gaily, spinning in place, for all the world, just a giddy, silly girl in love.