one passing night

the evening is spread out against the sky


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☆ she dreams of past demons 004;
herlonelystar wrote in onepassingnight


[ There's always the element of disbelief that can distinguish nightmares for true fears. But this dream.. it may look like a nightmare, but to Usagi, it's reality. Scenes pass by in a flash but linger far too long for her taste.

People shatter into stardust before her; the first one being the worst. It's of a man. Tall with dark hair and beautiful blue eyes. She and him are at the airport where he hands her a beautiful ring. He's in the middle of making a promise -- something to do when he returns from his trip before he pauses. He's quickly turning into stardust, leaving a golden crystal behined before a hand shoots out clutching it tightly. The stardust dissipates and it's a warrior in gold, staring with cruel amusement as Usagi's vision darkens.

The next are two dear friends -- the ones with the blessings of Jupiter and Mercury. There had been a battle with a different woman this time. Both of them are transformed, wrapped in ice white colored hair tendrils before they're hit with a power blast that cause them to crumble into nothing. Crystals in the colors of blue and green appear where their bodies were until they're snatched away.

Again two more friends perish at the hands of the golden warrior. The scene is of a japanese shinto shrine. She's managed to destroy a warrior with dark wings dark skin and red hair. The ones blessed with the planets of Mars and Venus look so happy when Usagi appears that while the race to gather together, they're caught unawares from the back. Their faces are horrified while their bodies disintigrate and before Usagi can snatch up the crystals left in their wake, the woman in gold has them and leaves maniacal laughter behind.

The golden warrior is named Galaxia. And only a tiny child with red hair is with her as Galaxia finds a way to taunt the moon rabbit. She plays on Usagi's fears -- torturing her with the image of Neptune and Uranus meeting the same fates as those before them. "Are you sure that the future you know is the real future? Do you really think the future you know will come to pass?"

The trip to Galaxia's stronghold is a difficult one. She and her Starlight comrades aren't even out of the solar system before she's left with the afterimage of Pluto and an untransformed Saturn disintigrating into dust. Resolve and anger strengthened, Moon, the Kinmoku Princess and the Starlights all head to the Zero Sagittarius Star System. So many deaths on the way to the final battle; most of her allies fall on the way to find Galaxia.

It seems like there's hope: The future child blessed by the moon and the color of pink cotton candy and her sailor senshi appear to help fight for everyone. But it seems that everyone has other plans. Galaxia is a cruel mistress it seems and has shaped her newest fighters to Sailor Moon's weakness. "Kill Sailor Moon. Get the Silver Crystal."

The image shifts and instead of a giant castle as the backdrop, the battle ground is a cliff that leads to a mass of swirling white: The Galaxy Cauldron: where everything is born from and comes to die at. The large container holding the stars of her dearest friends are thrown in, melting into nothingness as Galaxia laughs. Moon can't even grasp the last act of sheer cruelty: The corrupted version of her soul mate is pushed in, and as soon as he melts into the cauldron, her own future daughter disappears.

Alas, it is never over. Galaxia meets her fate at the rising Chaos, a much darker power that envelopes the beautiful swirling cauldron. Everything is dark except for Sailor Moon and Chibi Chibi. She learns of the Dark Stars, how everything was Chaos' plan to bring her here. He assaults her with dark power, which her power shield is able to deflect for the time being.

Chibi Chibi speaks in a voice much older than her childish body makes her out to be. "You must destroy the Cauldron, Sailor Moon. With it, Chaos will be destroyed as well. The only way to bring peace to this Galaxy is the do this." The look of horror says everything that Usagi can't.

She can't do this -- She doesn't want to do this but with no other option as Chaos grows larger and stronger by the second, she stands with tears streaming down her face as she rushes into the darkness.



The images disappear -- scattering into stardust like all the people in the after images of those memories. What's left is that same child sitting on the edge of the center of the universe staring at where the beautiful swirling mass of white was. She has no wings. Her battle uniform is tattered and torn in different places. Even her hair is loose and almost undone from its normal twin odango style.

But Sailor Moon is alive, face unreadable as the rest of her nightmare leaves her here until she decides to awaken.
]


(ooc: So, uh, tl;dr because sob, all of STARS is her nightmare: Lots of people die. She's forced to fight her dear friends that are corrupted. And she destroys the cauldron to keep the rest of the galaxy from dying out at the hand of Chaos. Which she does. Leaving her with nothing. END TL;DR sob, death anniversaries suck.

Here's a listing of the images I used in the post: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11. )

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Cloud's late - as usual.

[he doesn't understand it all.

He understands enough.

His boot steps are silent as he walks up to stand behind her.

He doesn't offer words because there are none.]

Usagi lives by a saying. BETTER LATE THAN NEVER AT ALL. /gets to shcool late

[ Usagi just knows when Cloud's entered her dreamscape. Normally, when he appears she can just relax because he's protected her from herself and everything else when he's here. But when he appears it's a bag of mixed emotions:

She's glad he's here. She's sad he's seen why she's haunted. She wants to reach out and just hide in his shirt and she's ashamed because she couldn't prevent this disaster.

But she'll deal with the silence. Somehow. In some way.
]

[after a minute, he shifts over and sits down next to her. There's very little distance between them in the way he sits. Usagi's earned her way into his personal space and, he hopes, he's allowed into hers. One of his arms will go over his upraised knee and after a long moment, his voice will very softly ask:]

That was real?

[ He's earned his spot in her personal space the moment they met. Even in this dark reliving of reality, she still is able to take solace in his presence because he has done nothing but let her just be.

In fact, it's because he's here that she's able to make one small movement. Her gloved hand raises up and clings to his elbow. It's a simple gesture, but she's sure he'll understand that she needs this. That even if it's a part of her that she doesn't like, that she's okay that he's seen this.
]

The day I destroyed this place is coming up soon for me.

[the sound he makes is quiet, a low throated hum. Something to show he's heard and understand but not something that makes a judgement on it. His head turns a little toward her at her touch but he doesn't try to shrug it off. If anything his body, somehow without seeming to move, shifts to let her in closer. She's touching the arm without the sleeve to cover his skin and so it's all right. His voice stays soft.]

What happens after you do?

Everything.. and nothing.

[ That hand of hers tightens just slightly as she says those words. Even after all this time, not knowing that the future would be happy and bright frightens her. She's still not looking at anything but the void that the cauldron encompassed. ]

I stopped Chaos from spreading across the universe and claiming everything as his and.. I destroyed the chance of new Stars being born.

[ She lets out a shudder as her free hand clutches at the brooch on her chest. Her heart is hurting -- even if she hadn't be able to save her friends, something on this level was something she never wanted. ]

[he's not going to give her words of comfort. He wouldn't know what to say in them. If he understands right, she's the only one left now. And the only one that will ever be. He thinks of Nanaki. And Vincent. And maybe even deep down where he hates the thought - maybe himself. The last and the one that will live while everything else dies. His head turns and he gently rests his chin against her hair.

He can't even promise to stay with her. Not now. Now when he finally knows that that discoloration on his arm isn't a bruise. Soft, he exhales. His voice is just as soft.]


You'll be... their living legacy.

[and even he doesn't know if it's a curse or not.]

[ It's in that small gesture that she finally turns her head just enough to look up at Cloud with tired eyes that have shed tears and are continuing to do so. ]

I just wanted to live with everyone, Cloud. It wasn't... [ She wanted to say: it wasn't supposed to be like this. but the words of Galaxia echo in her head again, causing her to bite down on her inner cheek at the words. Instead, she just lowers her head so that she can settle in against his chin. ]

... You know, my friends and I.. when we were all fifteen we traveled to the future. All of us had brought peace to the universe. Mamo-chan and I... we were supposed become the King and Queen and have a little princess. Our Small Lady.

[ This was the future she had aimed for -- the future she had worked so hard for with everyone. The unfulfilled wishes that she normally kept hidden spill from her lips now that she's here with Cloud who has become one of her lifelines, even more so after this. ]

[he finally gives in, freeing his arm from her but only to wrap it around her and draw her in close against his side. It's his 'safe' side and so he doesn't have to worry about tainting her. He lowers his head again to tuck his chin over the top of her head.

What can he say?

He's not the hope giver in his group. And his encouragement tends to lean more toward just before a fight - not just after it. He understands though, how even winning can still feel like losing. How some dreams seems so close - and how it feels when they get snatched out from between your fingers. So he simply holds her close, hand gentle as it rubs against her back, careful of bruises and wounds that might remain.]


If I knew how to make it better, I would, Usagi. If I could take you home with me and keep you there, I would. I'm sorry. It's not fair.

[ The only bruises and wounds she have are purely emotional now. Wounds that are so slow in healing that they may not be at all. Slowly, she pulls her legs from beneath her and just curls into his side -- finding that small spot where she can feel the safest. ]

I know... I know it's not fair.

[ Slowly, she breathes in. It's an eternal struggle, but she manages to gather herself and tilts her head up to give Cloud a grateful smile. Her face is dirty and messed up but she still finds it in her to smile. ]

I wouldn't mind visiting your home one day, Cloud but I don't want to live anywhere than my world. I have to protect it for everyone.

[the smile is heartbreaking and he gathers her closer, hurting for her. Why don't the good guys get to win the way they do in the fairy tales? Why is there always a price to pay instead, too high and too much? It's not fair. It's been a mantra in his own head these past few days... but no one cares if it's fair or not. It's the price extracted and there's no choice or substitute for it. With a quiet exhale, he lowers his head to rest his chin over the top of her head.

Who protects her though?

As if he had a right to ask. That's ironically laughable. All he can do is hold her close for right now.

It's not enough.]


You already visit my home. You came in a dream and you were older than you are now. You sat in the bar and drank milk and helped me eat Tifa's cookies.

They were really good cookies.

s-sob I'm sorry I'm late ;A;

[ All Usagi can do right now is stay huddled close -- be wrapped up in the arms of someone dear to her until she awakens from this nightmare. .. that is until he mentions that she's been in a dream of his and older...

She straightens herself, pushing him away enough just to look at him with a curiously confused look on her face.
]

Older? How old was I?

[ She knows somewhere in the back of her subconscious that she shouldn't ask; but she's always been the curious rabbit and above all else, still hoping for some kind of happy future. ]

I wasn't too old was I? I mean, was I Grandma age or something?


snuggles have no time limits! you came back, that's what counts

[he lets her pull away and looks down at her somberly. At her question he tucks his chin a little and frowns before looking seriously back up at her.]

You were very old. You looked like a little prune. You'd lost most of your hair and you'd dyed the rest a strange pale purple. You had a hard time getting around even with your walker and you kept muttering about 'kids these days'.

...

I think one of your fingers fell off in the cookie tin.

/FOREVER CLINGS ;A; of course I came back!

........EH?!

[ And for the first time since beginning this dream, Usagi begins to act herself again: Loud. Energetic. Whiny~. There's a mixture of disbelief, horror, and confusion that falls over her face, especially once he mentions about her fingers in the cookie tin. ]

You're... you're joking, right? There's no way! I couldn't be that old and wrinkly!

[ Commencing the large blue puppy dog eyes along with some quick tugging of his arm. ]

Clooooud! Come on! Tell me the truth!

holds tight and snuggles ;3

[his face stays serious for a moment more, and then her tugging wins and the edges of his lips curve the smallest bit. In his soft voice, he says:]

You were beautiful, Usagi. Beautiful and elegant. With cute shoes. You felt a thousand years old and didn't look much different than you do now. You even had those blond meatballs on your head. And you still teased me.

[ She glances down at her own boots which are tattered in a few places and smudged with a bit of dirt from laying on the ground. But what gets her is feeling old but not looking it at all. Beautiful and elegant.. she had heard that description before from Chibi-Usa.. and that was only when she referred to.. ]

Did.. she say anything? Like.. what she's doing now or.. [ What kind of future she'd have? It's a dangerous question, but she feels the need to ask anyway. ]

[he wishes he had something to tell her but all he can do is reach out and rest a hand on top of her head, a gentle stroke before it falls away. Cloud's lousy at lying. It's one of the reasons he tries to avoid being around people that will ask questions he doesn't want to answer.]

Not really. But you could still smile. And laugh. And share cookies with a friend. Wherever you were - whatever you were doing, Usagi - you still had people that loved you and that you loved.

[ It's not exactly the answer she's looking for. But, hearing that she's still able to smile and to be able to just enjoy the company of those she cherished...

The way she relaxes finally as if a bit of weight has been lifted off her shoulders shows that the answer is enough for her.
]

Thanks, Cloud. [ The dream itself is becoming a bit brighter. It seems to be shifting to something much less daunting and more to suit the mood change of the dreamer. ] But, my future self got to eat cookies with you! I'm so jealous.

[Cloud would have a hard time believing he was much of a comfort to anyone, but he'll still be relieved that for some reason something he's said hasn't been an entire bust. Everyone deserves the chance to mourn and he's not stupid enough to think that everything's better now - but it's still good to see Usagi's eyes finding light again. So her thanks gets a grunt but his lips tip just a little at their edges.]

Tifa's cookies are the best. You don't have to wait until you're old to come and have some though. You can come any time. Even if I'm not there. Tifa and the kids will like you.

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