With a yawn, Yusuke Mizuki opened his eyes from a dream about Rouge. It was Saturday. School today. But it was only a half-day. Just one half day of school and than he could devote his entire attention onto Rouge for a while. What time was it? Yusuke glanced at the new clock quickly, than turned away. It was 9:00. Great…
Suddenly, Yusuke bolted upright in his bed. It was 9:00! He was late for school again!
He jumped out from under the blankets, and saw through the screen Rouge's silhouette. She was already up. She was cooking.
Cooking? Why didn't she wake him? Why was she still cooking breakfast? The smell of cooking white rice wafted in throughout the house, as it grew hotter. But Yusuke didn't have time to think about that. He had to get ready for school!
He quickly threw on his school uniform, grabbed his bag, and was ready to go. "Bye Rouge!" He called out as he ran though the door and to his bicycle.
"Wait!" Rouge called out, running after him holding a pan full of steaming rice in her left hand. She waved her right hand back and forth to get his attention. "I've been making you lunch! Yusuke-kun!" She waved her right arm harder, but it was too late. Yusuke was gone from sight.
"Darn," She said. "I spent all that time making Yusuke-kun lunch, but he ran out of here too quickly. I didn't have time to give it to him." She sighed, than turned around and headed back inside to do the laundry.
She gathered the dirty clothes that were strewn about, and put them into the washing machine. Than she took a step back and admired her work. "Yusuke-kun will surly be pleased when he gets back."
Meanwhile, in the castle of the Underworld, Raiga had gathered the next servant that he had in order to try and capture Princess Rouge.
"Lt. Telra," Raiga said in his deep, booming voice to the older figure that kneeled before him. "Your mission is the same mission that Regulas had. You are to capture Princess Rouge. If Kaige or Meige interfere, kill them."
"Yes, Raiga-sama," Telra said.
"Yusuke!" The teacher called out. "Why are you late?"
"I- I'm sorry sensei," He replied. "It won't happen again."
"I've heard that before," the teacher replied. "Stay after school."
"Great," he replied as he slid into his chair. From her seat, Koine gave Yusuke a sympathetic look before turning her attention back to the teacher and the lesson that was being taught.
When the class was finally over, and they had a ten-minute break before the next class, Yusuke's friends Tsutomu and Takashi walked over, while Kaoro talked to Koine.
"Yusuke," Takashi started. "Were all going out for some pizza after class. Do you want to come?"
"Uh…" Yusuke replied, not really paying attention. "I don't know. I'm pretty busy."
Tsutomu slapped himself in the forehead, than threw his arms down on Yusuke's desk. "Koine will be there."
"So?" Yusuke replied. "I have to stay after school, you know."
"Well, come after you get out," Takashi said.
"Yeah, sure, whatever," Yusuke replied, still not paying attention. What he was actually thinking about was Rouge. When she recovered her memories, he would never see her again. Kaige was right. They had to make happy times while they still had them.
A moment later, when Takashi and Tsutomu told Koine that Yusuke had agreed to go with them, she was clearly happy. "Arigato," She told them.
"Y-your welcome," Takashi said shakily. Tsutomu noticed that his friend's voice had wavered and glanced at him quickly. He noted that Takashi was blushing slightly, but quickly got over it when he noticed Tsutomu looking at him.
Meige sighed as she swept the small shed that Yusuke had let them live in. She was really grateful to him, as she knew her sister was, since Yusuke was breaking the rules set forth by his landlady by letting them stay there.
She really felt sorry for Kaige, having to fight Regulas. It was a shame, really. And it was all Raiga's fault. He had taken over the underworld, killed their mother, and forced them out of their home. Meige wouldn't have minded being replaced on the throne. That would have been far less painful than having to watch her sister kill the man she loved. Watching her mother die in front of her.
"At least Rouge had the blessing of not remembering," She said aloud to herself.
"Blessing?" a voice cried.
"Kaige!" Meige exclaimed as she dropped her broom.
"Blessing, Meige?" Kaige cried out. "How is that a blessing? We have to wait here while Raiga tries to get our sister. She can't even remember how to use her powers, or how we can get our hands on the sword!"
"Yes, Kaige," Meige replied to her sister when she stopped to take a breath, "A blessing. It's a blessing that she doesn't have to remember the pain of losing our mother, of being forced out of our home, and of remembering that the man whom you killed in battle was the man you were engaged to! I would rather have her never remember her past than to have her remember all the pain we have been through since Raiga overthrew our father for the throne."
"M- Meige," Kaige said, taken aback. She hadn't thought of it that way. Trying to protect their sister. But that didn't matter. Of course it didn't, she tried to reassure herself. Rouge had to remember her past. She just had to. Or they would never be able to make Raiga pay. Pay for everything. Everything he had done to them. All the pain…
With a sigh, Kaige turned around and walked out of the shed.
Yusuke peddled hard on his bike, in a rush to get home. He wanted to see Rouge. Of course, he always wanted to see Rouge, but this time was special. It had been one month since Rouge had fell from the sky and came to live with him.
She had remembered little from her past, but she was starting to remember some things. Meige had confirmed that the dream Rouge had the first night she stayed at Yusuke's house was indeed of their mother, and her death. She also had a flashback from long ago, playing with her sisters. It wasn't anything big, really, but it was from her past, and that's what made it so important.
He arrived home a moment later. From inside the house, he could smell all sorts of good foods being cooked. Rouge was at it again. Ever since she came to stay with him, she took care of the house, the laundry, cooking, cleaning, everything. It may have been just to keep busy, since he didn't really want her to get a job, or it may have been her way of saying thanks to him for letting her stay in his home. Either way, he appreciated it.
"Hi Rouge," He called out as he entered the house. The smell of cooking food was even more intense from inside than it was from outside.
"Yusuke-kun!" Rouge cried out. "I'm in the kitchen! Dinner is almost ready!"
Yusuke slid open the screen and entered the kitchen. Rouge was over by the sink, washing some dirty dishes. She had definitely improved as a cook since she first arrived. He could still remember the first meal she made for him. It had been eggs, sunny side up. Of course, it had been almost petrified from being cooked so long, but he had still managed to get it down.
"Dinner is ready!" Rouge sang out, breaking Yusuke away from his thoughts. He watched as she placed a few dishes onto the small table, than kneeled down, ready to eat. Yusuke followed.
"Do you know what today is?" Rouge asked shyly.
"Yeah," Yusuke replied. "It's been a month since you came here."
"Your right!" Rouge replied enthusiastically. "Yusuke-kun, I'm glad you remembered!"
"Tell me why we can't go in there and get some food again," Kaige asked her sister as she peered through a tiny hole in the screen of Yusuke's house into the kitchen.
"Because today is a special day for them," Meige replied. "It's been one month since they met. One month already."
"Yeah," Kaige agreed, relenting on the food issue. "It's been quiet lately. But I don't think it'll stay that way for long."
"Do you feel an evil aura?" Meige asked, suddenly alarmed. "I don't feel anything."
"Iie," Kaige said. "It has just been too quiet. I don't think Raiga will let it be quiet for much longer."
"Yeah," Meige sighed. "I guess we should be on guard."
Telra appeared in front of Yusuke's house. He drew his sword, and prepared to capture Princess Rouge. Before her family had been overthrown, Telra had been the commander of the royal family's army. However, he had helped to overthrow the family in exchange for a promotion. It hadn't really been a difficult moral choice. The King had always regarded him as an outsider. Never really belonged. He had hated the royal family. The only one who had ever treated him with any respect was Princess Meige.
Within a few moments, Kaige and Meige burst out of the small shed near the house where he knew Rouge was. They had shed their civilian clothes, and were now wearing their battle gear. They saw whom it was that was threatening their sister, and immediately started to attack. After all, he had been the one who had led the overthrow. They knew he was the enemy.
"Spirits who rule the darkness," Kaige began. "Lost souls wandering against God's light, if you wish to release your power, follow us!"
"Come to us and rend asunder the evil spirit," Meige continued. "Guide us to the land of shining light!"
"Glacier Thunder Drive!" They cried out together as they launched their combined attack at Telra.
At the small pizza shop where Yusuke had agreed to meet his friends, they were getting impatient.
"Where is he?" Takashi wondered aloud. "He should have been here an hour ago!"
"Are you sure he said yes?" Koine asked Tsutomu and Takashi from across the table. "Maybe he didn't hear you?"
"Oh, he definitely heard them," Kaoro steamed. "I'm sure of it. But he'd better have a really good excuse for standing Koine up! Come on!" Kaoro slipped out of the booth and stood up. "Let's go over to Yusuke's and see what he's doing."
"No!" Koine exclaimed suddenly, startling the group. "I- I'll go to Yusuke's house alone."
"But Koine!" Takashi protested, than stopped. It was no use arguing. But he would follow Koine. Maybe she wouldn't know it, but he would be following her. In a burst of speed, Takashi dashed after her.
Telra dodged the attack, and lunged at the two sisters. Kaige jumped out of the way in time, but Meige hesitated a little before she darted away. As a result, Telra was able to grab her leg and pull her down. They hit the ground with a thud.
Meige struggled to get away from Telra but his grip help on fast. He was on top of her. She kicked him and bit him, but he seemed unaffected.
As the two struggled, Kaige jumped above them, and prepared to stab Telra in the back. She drew her long thin blade and aimed. Telra was right below her. She had a perfect shot. Telra wouldn't be a threat much longer.
At that moment, Yusuke and Rouge noticed the commotion outside, and ran to the door. Yusuke slid the screen open and the two ran onto the porch to witness the battle. However, unbeknownst to them, Koine and Takashi arrived at Yusuke's home.
Koine still hadn't realized that Takashi had followed her, and so when she saw the battle that was taking place, she his behind a small bush near the groove of trees on the property and watched the fight. It was at that moment that she felt a hand on her shoulder.
Telra saw Kaige jump above him out of the corner of his eye. He could guess what was coming. She would try and kill him. However, it wouldn't be that easy. As Kaige was coming down upon the two, He quickly let go of Meige and dove out of the way of Kaige's blade.
As he hit the ground, a soft thud was heard behind him, followed by a scream. It had all worked out as planned. Kaige had killed Meige.
"Meige!" Kaige cried out as she pulled her blade from out of Meige's flesh. Luckily, she had missed her sister's heart, and had only hit her in the arm. It looked bad, but Kaige could tell instantly that the wound wasn't fatal. She would be all right.
With a sudden burst of determination, Kaige turned to face Telra. He would pay. Now, she had even more will to defeat him.
Koine let out a small gasp as she felt the hand on her shoulder. She covered her mouth up almost as quickly to prevent herself from being heard by the people battling in Yusuke's yard. She turned around to face Takashi, who was staring above the bush with a look of curiosity, amazement, and terror, all at once.
"Takashi!" Koine whispered. "What are you doing here?"
"I followed you," He replied, ducking lower behind the bush. "I was… worried about you."
"Worried?" Koine replied, with a startled look on her face. After a moment her face softened and she smiled. "Thanks for worrying about me."
"Your welcome," Takashi said, the darkness covering the bright red color of his cheeks. "What's going on in Yusuke's yard?"
"I don't know," Koine replied in a slightly more nervous voice. "I really don't know."
As Kaige turned to face Telra, he spotted the couple watching the battle from the house. A cruel smile spread over his face as he launched a blast of energy at Yusuke and Rouge.
"Terra Drive!" He cried out and a single leaf, similar to the leaf of an oak tree, shot out at them, a blazing stream of green energy propelling the leaf forward.
Yusuke saw the blast coming, and shielded Rouge with his body. An instant later, the attack from Telra hit him, and sent both Yusuke and Rouge crashing onto the ground.
"Rouge!" Kaige cried out as she dashed over to attack Telra.
"Yusuke!" Koine cried out in frenzy as the attack hit him. "Yusuke!" She got up to dash over to him, but Takashi held her back. She continued to struggle in an attempt to run over to Yusuke, but Takashi's grip held fast.
"Let me go!" Koine cried out, still struggling. "What are you doing? Yusuke is hurt!"
"We should stay out of sight," Takashi replied. "And… and…" He trailed off.
"What is it?" Koine asked him, curious, as she stopped struggling. "And what?"
"I… I…" Takashi started blushing bright red again. "I don't want you hurt."
"Takashi," Koine whispered.
Rouge opened her eyes after the blast, to find Yusuke lying on top of her. His eyes were closed, and he was badly bruised. She herself was fine. Yusuke-kun had shielded her. Saved her.
"Yusuke-kun!" Rouge cried, sitting up and putting his head in her lap. "You stay here. I'll be right back." With that, she stood up, and gently placed Yusuke's head on the ground. Than she turned, and with a look of determination, and tears streaming down her face, looked at Telra.
"No," Rouge said loudly. "You hurt Yusuke-kun." Repeating it a little louder, she said, "You hurt Yusuke-kun! You Hurt Yusuke-Kun! YOU HURT YUSUKE-KUN!"
With that, a blast of energy circled her and started to expand rapidly.
Koine and Takashi watched in amazement as that girl, Yusuke's sister, sent a huge blast of energy at Telra. It was obvious that she was not a normal girl.
Everything that happened after Rouge let out the huge blast of energy seemed to happen in slow motion. It hit Telra. It hit him hard. He flew back several feet. In fact, he flew back all the way to where Takashi and Koine were hiding behind the bush.
Telra landed on the bush hard. Koine let out a muffled scream as Takashi covered her mouth. Slowly, and obviously in pain, Telra turned to face the two. With his last bit of energy, he used his power to send Takashi and Koine to the underworld. They vanished in an instant, and a moment later, Lt. Telra, the man who had led the revolution of the Underworld under the command of Raiga-sama, brew in his last breath.
"Lt. Telra has failed," Raiga said to the lone shadowed figure that stood kneeling before him. "He was defeated by Princess Rouge. However, before he died, he left us a nice present." Of course, Raiga was referring to Koine and Takashi, who lay on two stone slabs behind the shadowed figure. They were still alive, of course, but only as long as Master Raiga saw fit.
"I will not fail you, Raiga-sama," The shadowed figure said in a low, sullen voice. "Vega, Regulus, and even Telra failed you because they did not have a plan going into battle with the Princesses. However, I, Omega, do have a plan. And it will make use of the two pawns that Telra captured."
"Excellent," Raiga said. "You may go. Capture Princess Rouge, and bring her back to me."
"Ha," Omega said, kneeling before Raiga. He raised his right arm to his chest, and pushed his fist towards Raiga in a form of allegiance, and than disappeared.
"Omega will fail," Raiga said aloud to himself. "However, he will bring me a great prize before his death." He started laughing loudly, as before him, the bodies of Takashi and Koine disappeared.
Rouge's panicked cries awaked Yusuke. He opened his eyes to see Rouge's face above him. Her eyes were wet with tears, but her face lit up when she saw him open his eyes.
"Yusuke-kun!" Rouge cried out, fresh tears pouring out of her eyes. Tears of happiness, Yusuke decided. He gently reached up and wiped her tears away.
"Don't cry," He said weakly. "I'm all right. Don't cry."
"Yusuke-kun," Rouge said, smiling. "All right. Everything will be all right."
"How are you doing?" Kaige asked Meige as she entered the shed. "Are you getting any better?"
"A little," Meige replied from where she lay. "But I'll still be in bed for another week. And after that, I'll still be unable to fight for a while. You'll have to keep a close eye on Rouge."
"Yeah," Kaige replied. "I will."
"Have you seen Koine?" Kaoro asked Tsutomu over the phone. "She hasn't been home the last few nights. Her parents are worried about her. They've already called the police."
"I haven't seen her since we were at that pizza place," Tsutomu replied. "But Takashi's been missing since then too. Haven't you heard?"
"No!" Kaoro exclaimed. "They left together. Maybe they still are together, wherever they are."
"Yeah," Tsutomu replied. After talking for a few more moments about their friends, Tsutomu hung up the phone. He walked over to the nearby couch and sat down. Two of his friends were missing. And he hadn't seen Yusuke lately at school. His sister had been calling him in sick the last few days. The same day that Takashi and Koine disappeared.
A light bulb went off in Tsutomu's head. He knew where to look. He grabbed his jacket and ran out of his house. He had to get over to Yusuke's. He had to find out what was going on for himself.