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Starless Night

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It was a clear, warm night and the city was full of restless life. Everywhere there was life and noise and even more noise. No place was silent, no place was still. And yet, for two of the night's inhabitants, a single syllable was able to stretch out across the sound of traffic and pedestrians and all the other noises of the hustle and bustle.

“Hmmm.”

The two figures stopped walking, almost in unison. Although they were surrounded by the mass of moving bodies, they were somehow undisturbed; as always, these two had a world all of their own.

“What's wrong?”

Michiru look down from the sky and into Haruka's eyes, which were filled with the reflections of city lights, flooded with neon and brightness just like everything else in Tokyo. Haruka, her companion, her partner in so many ways. Even now that the fight was over – Galaxia finally defeated, and the world saved again despite the odds – they were still here together, always.

“Michiru?” Haruka asked after a moment without an answer, beginning to sound and look worried.

“It's nothing,” Michiru said, shaking her head slowly. “There's just no stars.”

Haruka frowned, then looked at the sky herself. “No, there's not,” she said after a moment's contemplation. She shrugged, “There's never any stars in the city.”

Michiru nodded and smiled, a gesture small and somewhat sad. She took a small step forward, preparing to rejoin the crowds.

“But the moon's always bright,” Haruka added, standing still.

Michiru stopped and her smile turned into soft laughter. “That's rather fitting, isn't it? A reminder that the rabbit in the moon is always watching.”

Haruka laughed as well. “I'm not sure I like the idea of Usagi watching us all the time.”

“Ah, well,” Michiru told her, leaning in close, “that's why we have curtains. So many curtains.” She brushed her lips lightly against Haruka's cheek than pulled away and began to walk. Haruka followed after only a few footsteps, keeping up but not quite catching her.

As they continued on their way, Michiru couldn’t help but look back up into the sky and its darkness, pure and complete. Absolute nothing to make a wish on, except perhaps a passing airplane.

Or maybe the moon.

“How about this,” Haruka said about two blocks down, still walking a pace or two behind Michiru. “Tomorrow night, we go for a drive, outside the city. We drive and drive, until we find ourselves some stars. Maybe we could even find a telescope, try and find Uranus and Neptune in the sky.”

Michiru glanced back over her shoulder. “Neptune's not visible right now.”

“Right,” Haruka said, “of course not. That would be far too obvious for her. But I'm sure there will still be other stars and planets to see, if you want to go with me. So, what do you think?”

Michiru smiled and reached back to take Haruka's hand in her own, pulling her forward.

“That sounds wonderful.”