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Phoenix Chronicles Episode Seven: Just Show A Little Love, Even If Itís Not ThereÖ.

Opening them: Illusion

Ranma sat with Isamu at his desk, giving him a cold gaze. Isamu just gave him a smug smile, and almost seemed to be laughing. This was one of the reasons that Ranma hated being an adult. He felt as if he had lost whatever weight he had with the younger crowd. He was the old man now. What upset him the most was possibly the fact that he was no longer able likable to teenagers.

Even his daughter seemed somewhat distant. That didnít surprise him too much, but he was hoping that his daughter would still think of him as cool. He knew it seemed ridiculous, but he couldnít help thinking that he had lost that charm, and charisma he had in his younger years.

"Mano-kun, You do realize that I could revoke your scholarship on grounds or sexual assault, donít you?"

"Old man, You wonít be able to push it very far. This school needs me."

Did he just call me an old man? I canít believe it. Is that what I am to these kids? To Yui too? He thought almost angrily. He stole a glance at the mirror behind Isamu, and saw himself, still with the black hair, and the trademark pigtail. He still had that athletic air about him, despite the lab coat, and the tie. That made him smile somewhat.

Then, he looked down at Isamu with a renewed confidence, and spoke in a low menacing tone. He said, "Isamu, Clamp only registers the elite. There are several other players as good as you are. In fact, most of them are a lot better than you are. Youíre scholarship is an honor, which you have to earn. We could just as easily kick you out for bad grades. Sexual assault doesnít exactly look well on a league record, either. I suggest you shape up, Mano-kun. Otherwise, you wonít have a scholarship to brag about. Got me?"

Isamu looked at the complete anger in the professorís eyes, but that wasnít what scared him. It was the fact that the guy could write a report, and his basketball career would go out the window.

"Y-yes, sir."

"Iím so glad we understand each other. Iím putting you on suspension from the team for a month."

"You canít do that! We have a game next Friday!"

"Your team has a game, you have to serve your time. Be grateful that Iím not expelling you. Now, get out."

Isamu left quickly, without so much as turning to give him a snarl. He just seemed in a hurry to leave. As soon as he did, Ranma smiled to himself for a moment, and thought, now, if I could only to that to HikaruÖIf only heíd give me a reason.

His face began to harden as he looked in the mirror again, and saw himself, and the clothes he wore. He saw the middle-aged professor, not the youngish teacher. What was worse was that Isamu was exactly like him, and that he had become that old man in Isamuís eyes, and his own eyes. He looked to see if the receptionist had gone to lunch.

She had.

He kicked his door closed, and began to punch at the mirror several times, each hit making him grow angrier. He punched harder, ripping through the backing, and into the wall, hitting the concrete and plaster behind it.

Why have I become the old man? Why couldnít I save Akane? Why couldnít Yui care about me? Iím so much better than that bastard, Gendou! Iím so much stronger than that brat of hers, so much stronger.

He stopped himself, looking at the broken mirror, and his bleeding fist. He saw in the jagged shard, which lay on the floor, that he was not a boy anymore. He had become the antithesis for that which he rebelled against. He was an adult, and that was so much harder for him to live with. He began to wonder what he was doing with his life.

--------

Mousse ran back down the hallway to look for his ring. He couldnít believe he dropped it so carelessly. He looked around, and couldnít see it. He supposed he would have to put an ad in the school paper to see if anyone had found it. He hit himself in the head for making such a big deal.

It was a big deal, though. Yui was the one who told him to get the ring, and that much made him even angrier about losing it. He looked around the stairwell, climbing every step, one by one, checking each one closely. He didnít care that he looked somewhat ridiculous, or if several other students were looking at him. After an hour, he left, and went to his dorm.

----------

Ranko stood in front of the mirror in her room, looking herself over. She wore a pair of tight black jeans, a pink blouse, and a pair of low black pumps. She had on pink lipstick, lavender eye shadow. She smiled at herself, admiring herself in the mirror.

She remembered to call Moeko, and told her about what happened with Isamu, hoping that her friend would be little more supportive. As it turned out, she got teased, as expected.

"Moeko, itís me, Ranko."

"Hey girl, I hope youíre not going to bring Isamu, are you?"

"NoÖHe hit on me after you left, but my dad busted him, and took that jerk to his office."

"Lucky youÖconsidering it was your fault, Ranko."

"What do you mean by that?"

"Hey, you were the one flirting with him. That jerk takes a mile if you give him an inch. Hey, whyíd you do that, anyway?"

"Are you still going to that movie later?"

"Donít change the subject, Ranko. Iím your best friend."

"Do you think he was jealous?"

"OoohÖNow, I know where this is going. You still love him, donít you?"

"Itís not like that, Moeko!"

"Hey, you donít have to hide it from me, you know that."

"Are you still going to that movie later?"

"Yeah, you coming?"

"Iíll go wait over at your place. Be right there." Ranko hung up the phone.

She now grabbed a black leather jacket she had bought when she first got into high school. She was hoping Mousse would notice it when he saw her again.

This time, Ranko thought, Ritsukoís gone, and Moeko would understand if I tried to pick up where I left off with Hikaru. She ran out into the living room,

Actually, that was nowhere. Mousse never told her that he liked her back. She thought that maybe this could be their chance to do just that. She looked at the mirror by the foyer, seeing herself. She smiled at this, and winked at her reflection.

Ranma came into the house, extremely tired, and saw that his daughter was going out. He wouldíve just let her go, and then thought to ask her about it.

"Where are you going?"

"Iím going to a movie with my friends."

"Youíre not going with the Isamu character, are you?"

"No, Iím going with Moeko, and Yuki."

"Who else?"

"Hikaru is also going."

"Ranko-"

"Heís Moekoís date, daddy. Anyway, heís a pretty good guy."

"Ranko, you cried for a whole week after that little jerk told you he didnít like you."

"Iím over that. Anyway, heís really changed."

"Okay," Ranma shrugged, "get going."

"Thanks, daddy." Ranko said, kissing him on the cheek before she left. How she reminded him of Akane and that made him miss his wife even more. It was hard to accept the fact that Rankoís affection for Yuiís ward wasnít just a silly crush. He could see how her eyes seemed to shimmer when she mentioned Mousse. He was hoping that Ranko would be the one to have Mousse going head over heals for her. At least that way, if he forbade Mousse from seeing her, he could hurt him. As is, though, Mousse was too busy worrying about other things. What made it worse was that Rankoís crush was a good person. It was hard for Ranma to brush him off as some average fool. It was like seeing Yuiís affections for him reflected in his own daughter. He thought, is this some sort of punishment? Are you reminding me what I lost with Yui? What Hikaru could have with my daughter?

He sat down in his chair, and looked at her large schoolbag, that lay on the floor, carelessly left open. He felt tempted to see what his daughter had in her bag, but he had to trust her. If nothing else, thatís what kept them so close since Akane had died. He kept thinking of what Akane had asked of him before she died. She wanted him to arrange a marriage between Ranko, and Mousse.

Even my own wife saw potential in him, Ranma thought, Yui, too. Hell, my own daughter sees something in that little idiot. The Messiah, as Yui called him.

--------

Mousse met Moeko, Yuki, and saw Ranko standing there with them. He approached them, and smiled at them.

"Well, how are you all?" he held his hand out to Moeko. She looked at Ranko, who almost offered her hand to him. He took Moekoís hand, and bowed to her, then Yukiís, and then Rankoís. He looked up to see her blush, and cleared his throat.

"Letís get going, shall we?" Moeko laughed.

Mousse nodded, and walked behind the girls as they talked. Ranko, though, wasnít saying anything. She kept looking back at him, and smiled every so often. Mousse shrugged, and smiled back. She turned fully when she saw that Isamu was walking up behind him.

Isamu grabbed Mousseís shoulders, and tried to squeeze them. Mousse allowed himself to slide out of Isamuís grasp, and fell into a crouching position. He elbow-jabbed Isamu in the stomach, making him grunt at first, but then grabbed the arm that jabbed him.

Isamu used the arm as a handle and lifted Mousse off the ground, preparing to throw him. Mousse, however, launched his weight back toward Isamu, and thrusts his feet forward. He kicked at Isamuís stomach again, and this time, he launched himself out of the jockís grasp. He landed on his hands, three feet away, his feet came back up in arc, hitting Isamu, and knocking him to the ground on his back. Mousseís feet came down a few feet from the girls, and his upper-body came up soon afterward.

"What do you want?" Mousse asked.

"Itís your fault I canít play, anymore." Isamu spat.

Mousse sighed in annoyance, and muttered, "What?"

"Get lost, before I call campus security, Isamu." Ranko bit out, standing next to Mousse. Isamu thought of charging again, but he saw that Mousse just stood there. He made no move to defend himself. He could see that Mousse didnít really care if he was beaten or not.

"I wonít forget about this." Isamu seethed, stomping off.

"Well, that was rather pointless." Mousse muttered. He turned to Ranko, who was leaning on his shoulder. She saw that he was looking at her, and laughed nervously.

"We should go to that movie. Donít you think?"

--------

(2008)

Mousse sat in the library. Moeko and Yuki had transferred to another college, so he felt completely alone. He had also told Ranko that he just wanted to be friends, and nothing more. He didnít want to hurt her, but she did seem like she was trying to push Moeko away whenever he was around.

The recent days were rough, though. It had been after midterms, so he had a huge headache, which made him feel like his head was literally spinning. He supposed he shouldnít have pushed himself as hard as he did. Maybe it was because he was trying to get over Yui, and that made his headache worse. For some reason, he couldnít even remember her face, her voice. He couldnít even remember that day at the beach. It was as if leaving put a veil over his mind, and all the pleasant memories, and the painful ones alike, were blocked out. He decided to put his head down.

"Are you alright?" asked a girl, standing over him.

"Go away." He muttered.

"Excuse me, but Iím trying to help." The girl snapped.

He had a huge headache, and arguing was the last thing on his mind, he was going to start with complaining about how bad his week had been, and began, "Well, I didnít ask for-" he looked up at her, and stayed quiet for a moment. That, he figured, was the smartest thing heíd done all week.

She was about 5í2, and she had short brown hair, and her eyes were dark brown, and she was slender. She wore a large white sweater, a black skirt, and some small black boots.

"You didnít ask for what?" she demanded.

"No, Iím sorry. Iíve just had a bad week. I didnít mean to take it out on you." he told her, bowing his head several times, though he wore a smile each time he did.

"I just saw you there, and I thought you were hurt or something." She replied, and he could see she was starting to smile.

"No, donít worry." He told her, "Youíre lucky you didnít find me during finals week, then youíd really wish you had let me sleep." And he smiled when he saw her giggle at that, and stood up to talk to her.

"Iím Maya Ibuki, pleased to meet you." she bowed slightly.

"Iím Hikaru Teníou." He returned it, smiling as he did so.

"Thatís an interesting name." She commented.

"Do you know what it means?" he asked a bit nervously.

"I think itís Ďthe light that rules the skies.í Or something like that." She answered, putting her index to her chin.

"Or something like that," Mousse replied modestly, then his head flared, making him sit down again.

"Are you okay?" she asked, grabbing his arm.

"Iíll live. I just need to get back to my apartment." He said, rubbing his temples.

"Let me help."

"You can. See?" he said standing up. Then he went on, " Iíll walk on my own. And all you have to do is turn that pretty smile of yours my way, and thatíll be my fuel to keep going."

That made her blush, and he reached up to tap her shoulder, saying, "All you have to do, now, is give me some room to stand up."

"Sorry,"

"No, no. Donít be sorry."

"That fuel you were talking about."

"What? Your encouraging smile?"

"Does that apply to movies, and restaurants, as well?" she teased.

"That dependsÖ"

"On what?"

"How much youíre willing to spend."

"You jerk."

"Just kidding." He said dodging her slap, "You can pay for half."

"What?" she demanded, raising her hand higher into the air?

He put his arm around her, and said, "Howís about we go to a party my friend is throwing?"

"Iíll think about it."

"Okay, then. How about we go to a movie? Friday night."

"Do I get to pick the movie?" she asked.

"Sure,"

"Theyíre going to do a vintage classic at the Impact Theatre."

"What?"

"I think itís called, ĎSuddenly Summersí or something."

"Well, okay." Mousse had to strain a smile this time.

"Or if youíre in the mood, we can watch the other feature."

"Whatís that?" Mousse wanted to know.

"Oh, ĎCasablancaí." She purred.

"My headís all better now." He said.

"Okay, so why donít we go make our own movie?" she told him.

"That sounds fine to me." He said.

--------------

Ritsuko wrote to her mother of her upcoming trip, her last letter before seeing her

mother again. She wrote,

Dear Mother,

Congratulations on the completion of your theorems for the Magi. I have good news, as well. Itís decided that I will officially join Gehirn. Iíll start working on Project E as early next month.

----------------

She rode on the train back to Kyoto, which had been renamed Tokyo 3, and she supposed it was a homecoming of sorts, but Yui and Mousse wouldnít be there to welcome her. It made her feel empty knowing that they wouldnít be waiting for her, but she knew that Mousse had no reason to stay with Gendou after Yui died. Mousse didnít mind suffering, but he didnít put himself through it because he enjoyed it.

She sat and looked at the buildings flashing by her, and thought, Did I miss all this? Then she remembered that she had gone to the University of Tokyo 2 with Mousseís company, which made it a very fun trip. She criticized Misato, but she didnít feel like she was any better when she thought about that train-trip. That was one of the only times she felt like a kid. For some reason, she felt like she was so much older when she was around Misato. Maybe it was because she felt like she always had to look after Misato. Although, on a number of occasions, Misato proved she could take care of herself. Misato also joined Gehirn, and Ritsuko had watched her during training. The blonde was very impressed with that girl who had been catatonic eight years before. It was just amazing to see how Misato had adjusted so well to everything.

She arrived at Tokyo 3, but didnít report to Gehirn headquarters until the next morning. She began to wander how big the place was, wandering through corridor after corridor. She was beginning to think sheíd never be able to find anyone else, and sheíd wander the place for years and never find her mother. She began to get nervous, and almost jumped when she heard one of the guards call to her.

"Who are you?" he snapped, pointing a gun toward her. She wondered if security had increased because what happened to Yui.

"Iím Dr. Ritsuko Akagi, technological development section. Hereís my ID." She handed him her card, which had her picture with her new blonde hair. She wondered how her mom would react, since she hadnít seen it yet. The guard presented a mini-scanning device out of his belt; it looked like those sliding machines of long ago which were used in banks and supermarkets. He slid her card through it, and her information appeared on the small screen that had been built into the device.

{I wonder if he gets cable on that.} She thought, and then quickly pushed it aside she started to react. Then, she explained, "I came to see how the new command center installation was coming along, but I got lost."

He handed her the ID card, and barked, "The Commander and Dr. Akagi will see you in the command center, maíam." Then, he offered a brief solute, and turned to lead her. After what she felt was an hour, they arrived at a steel door. She was beginning to think the guard didnít know his way around either. "Two wandering souls." She muttered.

"Excuse me, maíam?" he asked over his shoulder.

"Nothing." She told him. She thought about what she had just said, and again she wished for something familiar. She wished for Mousse, but he wouldnít come back on a bet. She wasnít sure if he even gambled. Then, she went past the guard, and into the command center.

-----------------

Naoko stood in front of Gendou, who sat in one of the chairs that, would belong to one of the Enlisted. Rating Technicians. He wore glasses now, as he had when Yui had disappeared.

"Are you alright?" she asked him now.

"Yes, I have no regrets concerning my work." He replied.

"Youíre lying. You still canít forget about Yui, can you?" she snapped, and when she said Yuiís name, Gendou could hear the hate in her voice, and that made him smile.

She had mistaken that smile for love, and put her arms on his shoulders. "But thatís fine with me. " She moaned, as she bent down to kiss him, and as she did, his eyes remained open as he looked at her mockingly. {Old hag, you must really think I actually care about you.} He thought, watching the skin around her eyes crease, and the smell of her sickened him. It was one of those idiotic perfume the youngsters used nowadays, "Passion," and sweat.

------------

As the two kissed, Ritsuko looked on, and felt ashamed of her mother. It took her aback some, so she waited until more people arrive at the command center. Then, she made her entrance.

"Hello, Ritsuko," Naoko said, hugging her daughter. "Welcome back."

"Hello, mother." She strained a smile, then she turned to face Gendou, "Hello, Commander."

"Why Ritsuko, weíve known each other for some time, now. You may call me Gendou if you wish." He told her, through one his clever smiles.

"It would be lack of respect, Commander, and after all, I just arrived." She replied in a controlled voice.

{Clever girl.} He thought. He thought perhaps she would be of some use as well, maybe even more useful than her mother, and that made him think of the look Naoko had at the mention of Yuiís name. This only convinced him that he had get the older Akagi to hurry and finish the Magi, and after that much was done, he would do away with her.

-------------

Mousse helped Nokoru get back to his apartment after the last party. He supposed that Nokoru would have a huge hangover, considering all the chugging contests his friend volunteered for. At least he was light, so Mousse was able to carry him on his back.

"We told you not to chug all that, you moron." Suo muttered.

"Yes, father. As usual, youíre always right." Nokoru muttered.

"Is he going to be alright?" asked Maya.

"Yeah, sure." Mousse told her.

"Yeah, sure he will," Suo added, "by next week he might even be able to stand up."

"Weíre supposed to be helping him, Suo. Weíre not supposed to make him feel worse." Mousse said defensively.

Then Mousse looked his current girlfriend and gave her an assuring smile. She was wearing a gray sweater he had given her, and Mousse took this as a good sign. Also, she wore the same black skirt she had when they first met in the library.

"Iíll help you take him, if you like, Hikaru-kun." Maya volunteered.

Mousse shook his head slowly, and smiled back at her. "Donít worry so much."

"Will he be alright?" She asked again, looking at Suo. He didnít say a word.

"Yeah. He just needs to sleep it off." Mousse told her.

"Hikaru-kun," Akira said, "Weíll take care of him. I mean, you and Maya have other plans, right?"

Suo and Akira took Nokoru, each of them putting one arm over their shoulder, and then began to walk.

"But you guys." Mousse protested.

"Look, Nokoru can be a total idiot sometimes. You know that, Hikaru."

"Suo!"

"But that doesnít mean have to miss a date over it, Hikaru."

"But, Suo-"

The detective let Akira hold Nokoru, while he went over to Mousse. Then, he grabbed his friendís neck in a headlock, and told Maya, "Excuse us." And then he put his over his mouth to whisper something to Mousse.

"Look, do you like her?"

"Well, yeah."

"Well, then. Go get her."

"Suo-san!"

"Look, even Nokoru would tell you to take this chance. Sheís a great girl. And weíre glad to see that you set yourself up real well. In fact, weíre all proud of you, Hikaru-kun. We want you to be okay, especially after all the shit youíve been through. Now go!" With that, he let go of Mousse and shoved him towards Maya.

"Well, letís get going." Mousse told her.

"And your friend?" Maya asked.

"The guys said theyíd take care of him." Mousse told her, still looking at the guys, over his shoulder as he walked away with Maya. She looked back with him, and they were hauling Nokoru away.

When she turned away, Nokoru was standing upright, and the three of them waved at the couple, and Mousse couldnít help laughing a bit.

"Bye, bye." Akira shouted.

"Have fun." Suo added.

"Donít stay out too late!" Nokoru shouted, and Suo elbowed him to be quiet. She looked back quickly, and saw them hauling Nokoru back to their office, and then she faced Mousse, who looked back at her.

"Something wrong?" he asked softly.

"Not at all." She whispered.

"You know, for the first time in a long time, I actually believe that." He told her, facing the setting sun.

-------

(2010)

Mousse sat in the closed café, waiting for Maya. He had helped the manager, and had tutored her during the past two semesters, so she gave him a copy of her key for the café, and he would go in there when he would talk with Maya. It was one way to guarantee that they wouldnít be interrupted. He was reading a brochure she had given him. It read, "The Future Is Now with GEHIRN," He couldnít help feel some uneasiness, and more so when he read a listing of the staff, especially when he read the name, "Gendou Ikari," and that perturbed him to no end, but he couldnít remember why. He didnít even know how she could have gotten the pamphlet he now held. He had also received one, and threw it away soon afterward, but he did get the letter from Ritsuko that came with him. It read,

Dear Hikaru-kun,

I have joined Gehirn, and I am now in line for the head of the technological department. I wish you could come here, too, but I know how you feel about this place. Hikaru, can you try to come? At least once? I mean, youíre one of the best friends I have. The only friend, actually. I just wish you could see the amazing things weíve done here. You wouldnít even recognize it. Iíll understand if you donít want to come, but at least keep in touch.

Love,

Ritsuko

"Hikaru-kun," Maya said, as she waved at him from the entrance. "Iím sorry Iím late."

"Itís alright." He told her.

"So what do you think?" she asked motioning to the brochure.

"I donít like it." He admitted, immediately regretting it when he saw the hurt and angry look on her face.

"Why not?" she wanted to know. "They have a great technology division, and you know how much I love computers!" she argued.

"Yes, I know that, but thereís something I donít quite trust. Itís all too suspicious." He said, his voice going cool.

"But itís what I want!" she told him.

"Maya, Iím not telling you whether or not you should go. However, if you do go, I canít go with you." he said calmly.

"Youíre not?" she asked softly.

"Iím sorry."

"Look, Hikaru-kun, you are extremely intelligent. I mean all the professors love you. Youíd probably get in with a high rank." She reasoned for him.

"Maya, itís not what I want." He told her.

"Why not?" she wanted to know.

"I told you. I have my doubts about that place."

"But Hikaru-kun, itís what Iíve always wanted." She pleaded.

"Like I said, Iím not stopping you. Iím not forbidding you, and even if I did, would you listen to me?"

"Well, I-" she found she couldnít answer. She realized she was going to sacrifice her personal life once she said good-bye to him. It wasnít fair.

He stood up, and kissed her. "Look. Iíll go with you to the train station, and Iíll see you off. But I canít go there. I just have a really bad feeling about that place, Maya, and I donít think you belong there, either."

She pushed him away, "Who are you to tell me where I belong? You donít even know where you belong!" she sneered. She saw he was taken a back, and then he reached out to hold her.

"I donít want to lose you." he said.

"Then, come with me," she sobbed into his shoulder.

"I canít. I canít go there. I just hope that you understand one day, Maya."

"Please, come with me. I donít want to lose you, either" she pleaded.

"Iím not asking you to choose. If you feel this is right for you, then do it. But, I canít go there. Itís that place, those people. I canít go with you. Iím sorry." He tried to hold her, but she pushed him away, and Ritsukoís letter fell from his sweater pocket. She picked it up, and looked at it.

"You should be," she sobbed shoving the letter into his chest, then she grabbed her bag, and left the café. Mousse stood by the booth they sat in whenever they came here. He sat down next to the gray sweater he had given her, and put his head down. His headache had returned, making his head spin. Even when the restaurant opened, he felt nauseous, and this time, no one approached him, or asked if they could help. He didnít expect anybody to do so either. He was used to being alone.

Gendou stood with a young girl over a thick glass plate, which showed the Geo front. She looked like Yui in many ways, save for the blue hair, and the crimson eyes, which were intense, and not nearly as lively as Yuiís brown eyes had been. The girl was a product of bio-genetic engineering, created from the several blood samples he had of Yui. It was Gendouís desire, to see Yui again, that spurred him to create the little girl that now stood next to him. She wore a simple casual red dress with shoulder straps, a pink shirt underneath, and a pair of red shoes.

"Öand this is Gehirn Headquarters." Gendou told her.

Naoko and Ritsuko approached the would be father and daughter pair, both of them ready for work after having gone to breakfast in the mess hall. "Good Morning, Commander. Did you bring your child today?" she asked. Then, she took a closer look, and amended, "Oh, wait. I couldíve sworn that you had a son."

"Oh, no. This isnít Shinji. Iíve decided to take care of an acquaintanceís child. Her name is Rei Ayanami." Gendou told them.

"Hello, Rei, Iím Ritsuko," the younger Akagi said cheerfully.

Naoko took a closer look, and thought, {She resembles someone.} Then she thought about the picture of Yui carrying Shinji on her back. She had a quick glance before Gendou tossed it into the fire. {Yes, itís Yui.} she thought angrily.

Naoko had gone through the hospitals for the local areas, and checked the data banks that went back to even ten years, and found no record for such a person. "All the records containing Rei Ayanami have been deleted? Theyíre all blank. Whatís going on?"

Mousse saw Maya at the train station. It took all the courage he had to go there, but he just didnít want to let her go. He went into a gift shop nearby, and had picked up a cushion with a two cats drawn on it. He saw Maya, now. She was crying, and holding a one suitcase, though just that one seemed too heavy for her to carry.

"Maya!"

"Go away."

"No, listen to me. I want to be with you, and the reason why I canít go there is because I lost someone that I loved very much, in that place. Now, I know it seems like Iím running away, and maybe I am. But I do know that Iíve grown to love you, and I wonít forget you."

"Hikaru, I-"

"Listen to me!"

She nodded.

"Here," he gave her the cushion he had bought. It was soft and cute, like her, and most of all, it was durable. "Donít forget me."

"I wonít." she whispered, and then she moved to kiss him one last time. Then, she said good-bye, boarded the train, and she was out of his life.

On the train, she saw him wave at her, and she waved back with a smile, holding the pillow up to the window. As soon as the train started going fast enough, she held the pillow close to her. Then she started to cry, and cry. She couldnít help it. She cried until she felt like she was going to burst. She got sleepy, and leaned back to sleep on the seat, and as she fell asleep, she whispered, "Goodnight, Hikaru. I love you."

ContinuedÖ

Ending Theme: Fly Me to the MoonÖ.

Trailer

--------

Mousse: I miss you, Yui-san.

Yui:ÖÖ

Gendou: If I must deal with it, so must you.

Mousse: Shut up! I didnít ask you.

Gendou: And you seem to be doing so well, you little coward. Gaining friends here and

there. Iíll make sure that you are dragged back here, where your suffering began.

Rei: Hi, Hikaru.

Mousse: Who are you?

Rei: Iím your friend, Hikaru.

Gendou: I made her, brat. You owe that much to me.

Mousse: I owe you nothing.

Gendou: Be grateful for what you have boy. Soon, Iíll have that ripped away from you as

as well..

Mousse: Next on Phoenix Chronicles is The Quest For TruthÖ