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PostSubject: [Advanced] Paramnesia   8th June 2016, 6:44 am

Name of the Storyline: Paramnesia
Name of the Creator(s):  Sailor Saturn & Sailor Mercury
Forum: Tokyo City
Plot Summary: In her anguish over losing Endymion, Princess Serenity destroyed the world with the power of her Silver Crystal despite her senshi's best attempt at stopping her. Once realizing what she did, Usagi sacrificed herself in order to bring everyone back to life. All of the senshi returned to their old lives, except Usagi. And Minako, who had died prior to the whole thing and got reborn without her old memories. As the other senshi's memories gradually return to them and they mourn Usagi's death, they begin to wonder why they can't find Minako at all.

Rei finally finds her in the most unlikely place; the dog pound. Minako is working there, looking completely healthy and happy. Rei is so happy to see her alive and well again, especially after losing Usagi, but she soon realizes that Minako does not remember her at all. And so she realizes the reason why Minako looks so happy and unburdened, not at all like the Minako she used to know. Torn between letting the one senshi who deserves a second chance at a normal life get what she wants and reclaiming all the memories they have shared together, Rei must now make the hardest decision in her life.

Details on any necessary information: This takes place in the PGSM/live-action universe, right after the Final Act.
Restrictions: Only for Rei & Minako, if necessary other characters will be NPCed

Member to Character List:
- Rei Hino/Sailor Mars: Sailor Saturn
- Minako Aino/Sailor Venus: Sailor Mercury

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PostSubject: Re: [Advanced] Paramnesia   22nd July 2016, 7:19 am



It felt strange walking down the crowded street. So full of people and life. And no one knew what had been sacrificed for them to have such a luxury. Rei glared as she passed every single one of them. Warning them away from her. Hating them for smiling and laughing so easily.

And cursing them for being happy, for being alive, and for being completely and utterly oblivious.

Rei closed her eyes for a moment, trying to dial her anger back. It wasn't their fault, she reminded herself - as she did every time she went out in public these days. This was what the sacrifice was for.

And then the ultimate reminder: Usagi wouldn't want you to hate them.

Rei opened her eyes, and let out a sigh. No, she wouldn't have. And even though Rei knew she wouldn't be able to comply completely, she could at least not attempt to burn holes through each innocent bystander she passed.

She forced her thoughts onto something else, something better. Something actually good. And something, she hoped, that would bring a kind of happiness back into her life. She was going to adopt a dog.  

Adding a pet to her life didn't make much sense - she didn't need the extra responsibility, and she certainly didn't need something else to worry about. And yet, Rei still found herself making her way down the street, the destination clear in her mind, even as she continued to wonder if she had lost her mind.  

A dog? What was she going to do with a dog?

But she was again reminded of a time, a time that felt so long ago and distant from the present, of a golden dog named Taro and definitely not Riki. Despite herself, a small smile came to Rei's lips. Riki. What a terrible name. What had Minako been thinking?

Minako.

The smile shattered and slipped away. No. Thoughts like that were best not remembered. Minako was gone and that was that. She had spent weeks searching, and there was nothing to find. And what was it Rei had always said to her? The past was the past, so live in the here and now.

A difficult philosophy to live by nowadays but wasn't that what she was trying to do, by going to this place? To move on. To find something to focus on that didn't rend her heart to pieces every single damned time.

Rei looked up and saw she had been standing outside of the dog pound's building for several minutes now, lost in her own thoughts, staring ahead without seeing. She focused her attention onto the front door now, forcing all thoughts away except for that of her goal.

She stepped forward and opened the door.

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PostSubject: Re: [Advanced] Paramnesia   5th August 2016, 9:10 am



Minako was starting her work day with the best dog ever.

They’d found him right outside the pound this morning, abandoned by someone. A beautiful brown dog who was so gentle and friendly, who immediately seemed to take to her when she greeted him for the first time earlier. Everyone had debated on what to name him, but Minako was certain what his name was from the moment she saw him. It was like she could read his mind.

The dog was obviously named Riki.

So that was the name she was putting on his cage now, and she looked at her handiwork proudly. Then she glanced at the dog. “Don’t worry, Riki, we’ll find someone to adopt you in no time.”

She half wondered if she should adopt him herself, since after all, she lived alone. It would be so nice to have a friend, and a dog was man’s best friend, right?

She decided that if no one wanted him by the end of the day, she would consider it further.

Her job done, she patted Riki once, closed his cage, and walked out from the back to the front side of the building where new customers would be coming in.

She hoped one of them would be looking to adopt a dog today.

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PostSubject: Re: [Advanced] Paramnesia   11th September 2016, 8:09 am



With the first step into the shelter, Rei froze as soon as she saw the person behind the counter, her heart jumping to her throat as everything zeroed in on this one person.

"Minako?"

Her mind screamed at her. This couldn't possibly be Minako. Not her Minako. Rei had searched for long upon her own revival, determined to find the girl who never was to be found. It had taken many hours of solitude and meditation, weeks of mourning and a lot of tears for Rei to finally accept that Minako had died of natural causes, so it made sense that magic couldn't bring her back again.

This girl... the hair was cut the same, dark brown falling to brush against her shoulders. Her eyes were the same as well, dark and full of a fiery kind of passion. Her delicate features were not in the trademark expressions that Rei was so used to seeing - she looked far more calm and content. It suited her.

It is her.

No. No, it couldn't be her. Despite all of the evidence stating otherwise, Rei wasn't sure she was ready to accept this.

But a part of her, a terrible, traitorous, hopeful part of her dared to believe it was true.

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PostSubject: Re: [Advanced] Paramnesia   19th September 2016, 1:31 pm



She smiled as she greeted the customers that came into the pound, glancing over each of them until she heard someone call her name. She turned to the person, expecting to find a regular or perhaps one of her acquaintances or co-workers, but instead found a complete stranger. Despite this, the stranger was looking at her in disbelief, as if she were surprised to see Minako there. Minako frowned. Who was she? Then she looked down at her name tag. Oh, maybe the girl had simply read that? Was that how she knew her name?

But if so, why was she calling her so casually, as if they knew each other?

She tilted her head, confused, but approached her nonetheless. “Hi! Is there anything I can help you with? Are you looking to adopt today?” she asked pleasantly. “I’m sorry; if you’ve been here before, I’m afraid I don’t remember you.”

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PostSubject: Re: [Advanced] Paramnesia   19th September 2016, 2:07 pm



As the other girl approached closer, Rei's doubts began to dwindle. All of the little detals were exactly the same, down to the way her expression scrunched up when she was confused, lips pursed together and slightly crooked.

Minako.

But then... what was she doing here? In an animal shelter? Was it for some sort of celebrity stunt? Rei didn't keep up with any kind of idols - she had heard enough about them from Usagi to know it wasn't something that interested her at all - so she wasn't certain if this was a thing celebrities did. But she knew her father often did charity events, so surely proper celebrities did the same.

That had to explain why Minako was here. Of all places. She was wearing a uniform and everything.

But as Minako spoke, there was a strangeness to her voice. Blank almost. Each word felt like a small dagger aimed at her chest.

I'm afraid I don't remember you.

That was the dagger being twisted.

Rei tried to get her thoughts in order, tried to get herself in control. Maybe Minako just didn't recognize her. Where was the near haughtiness, the familiar teasing and playful pushing at each other? Something was wrong. She knew it. Everything within her could feel that. This was Minako, her Minako, but at the same time, it wasn't.

But she had to try again, and, almost desperately, Rei took a step closer. "Minako... It's me, Rei."

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PostSubject: Re: [Advanced] Paramnesia   19th September 2016, 2:17 pm



The girl was definitely going through some… strong emotions, judging by the look on her face. But Minako still had no idea what or why.

“Rei?” she repeated the name offered slowly, as if trying it out on her tongue. It felt foreign, though it also had just the slightest tinge of familiarity. It felt like a memory that flew away the moment she tried to grasp it, leaving her with nothing but empty air, or a big black hole.

She frowned, desperately trying to remember. Remember this face, or this name, or this voice.

But all of it came up blank.

She shook her head regretfully. “I’m so sorry; can you remind me where we might have met? I really don’t recall…”

Guilt clawed up in her chest, but at the same time confusion also enveloped her. “Are you sure you’re not mistaking me for someone else?”

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PostSubject: Re: [Advanced] Paramnesia   19th September 2016, 3:17 pm



It was strange, hearing her name upon Minako's lips, after so long of only hearing it within only memories. Rei had forgotten how much she liked it.

But there was no time to relish in that kind of thought, as the more harsher facts pressed upon her. As Minako continued to speak, Rei knew that Minako truly did not remember her. She didn't know how this could have happened and she didn't know why. Perhaps some sort of side effect to being revived? As she had thought earlier, Minako's revival wasn't the same as the rest - she had died of natural causes. Something in the process could have been different. It could have gone wrong.

What if she came back without remembering anything?

But then, perhaps that was for the best. Rei looked, really looked, at the girl in front of her. Remembering how Minako had forced herself to stay apart from the rest of them, how she had worked so hard all by herself, a lone senshi fighting against untold enemies in the darkness. Never recognized, never appreciated. It must have been a hard life.

And now, Minako was getting a wish that all senshi had from time to time: she was getting to live a normal life. No longer would she be dragged down by dark memories, or have to go home and deal with injuries aching throughout her entire body, she wouldn't wake up in the middle of the night plagued by terrible dreams of a life long gone.

If she had the choice, Rei wasn't sure she would pass up the opportunity either. She knew she should feel glad for Minako. Happy that she was able to have this chance.

But it hurt at the same time. Because Minako no longer know her. Minako didn't remember the teasing comments, the heated arguments, the unexplainable connection that allowed them to fight side by side without words. It was as if Rei was losing her all over again.

Taking in a deep breath, Rei tried to get herself under control, and she nodded in response to Minako's last question. "Yes," she said. "Of course, that must be what it was. I'm sorry. You look so much like someone I knew."

She had to look away, find something - anything - to focus on that wasn't the girl she had lost and found and then lost again. It hurt too much right now to look at the beautiful face of a too familiar stranger.

"I was hoping to look at some animals," Rei began. Her words were slow as she focused on some poster hanging on the wall across the room. "I'm not completely certain what kind. I've never owned a pet before, but I do have a fondness for dogs."

The words felt wrong in her mouth - she wanted to scream at Minako, to make the other girl remember everything that had happened to them, between them. But no. She couldn't do that.

How could she possibly be the one to take away Minako's chance at a real life? Even if it meant that it would be a life without her in it.

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PostSubject: Re: [Advanced] Paramnesia   20th September 2016, 3:25 am



Minako relaxed slightly when the girl—Rei, was it?—admitted that she must have mistaken her for someone else. A niggling question in the back of her mind wondered; someone else who’s also called Minako? Because if the other girl’s name hadn’t been that and Rei had in fact only read it from her name tag, surely she would have known right away she’d gotten the wrong person?

What an odd coincidence, then, if there was another Minako out there who looked just like her.

Finally, the girl said she wanted to look at animals, and Minako’s face brightened. This was something she could help with. “Oh! Dogs are really nice; they’re loyal and easy to train. We actually just got a beautiful dog this morning that could use a nice home. Come to the back, I’ll show you. There are more of them there, too, of course, if you don’t find him to your liking.”

With an easy smile, she led Rei to the back, where all the animals were. She stopped by Riki’s cage first and pointed him out with a flourish like the host of a game show.

“Here you go, isn’t he beautiful? I’ve sort of named him Riki, but obviously if you adopt him you can name him whatever you want.”

Even if obviously Riki is the right choice, she added mentally but did not say it out loud. After all, she wasn’t supposed to be forcing the customers to accept her opinions, no matter how right they were.

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PostSubject: Re: [Advanced] Paramnesia   30th October 2016, 5:47 am



Seeing Minako's face brighten up made everything feel worth it - this was the reason she wanted to give Minako this chance. Her expression was so open. Gone was the cold wall hardened by duty and solitude. She was just a girl now. Not a soldier, not a leader. Not someone plaugued by past memories of defeat and the sole desire to keep those memories from repeating once again.

Minako looked free.

Rei realized she had barely paid attention to what Minako - no, she was not staring - but the beautiful smile on Minako's lips, coupled with her movement towards the back of the building brought her back to the present.

The dog was a beautiful brown color, with a friendly face. Rei found herself smiling, but as Minako spoke, her smile slipped away as the name 'Riki' sent another jolt of pain through her chest. Of course Minako would want to call the dog such a ridiculous name again.

"He's too calm for a name like Riki," Rei said. The words came out before she could talk herself out of it. It was too easy to fall back to familiar territory. Even if it was only familiar to herself. "Taro seems much more suitable for a dog like this."

Rei paused, and her indignant tone melted away as she allowed herself a small smile, sad and private. "But, Riki does have a certain charm."

She couldn't shake the strange emotions pulling at her. It was nice to talk to Minako, but at the same time, this didn't feel like her Minako. And yet, it did. Everything was different. But the same.

Maybe she was crazy to stay, to continue this. Better to leave Minako alone, to let her properly live her life without the presence of a ghost from her forgotten past.

But now that she had found Minako - finally, finally - how could she bear to lose her again?

To give herself something to do, Rei knelt down and peered into the cage. "He definitely has a cute face. Can I pet him?"

Rei glanced up at Minako then, drinking in the sight of her. It felt so new to see her, after having convinced herself that she'd never see Minako ever again. Despite all of the pain, all of the difficult emotions, it was good to be near her again.

Just like before - before that final wave goodbye - Rei knew she'd never be able to keep away.

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PostSubject: Re: [Advanced] Paramnesia   2nd December 2016, 9:50 am



“Riki can be a calm name,” Minako blurted out before she could think twice. Then she remembered that she was arguing with a customer. A thing that surely she shouldn’t be doing. She quickly plastered a smile even as her eye began to twitch. Taro? What kind of boring, silly name is that?

“If you say so. After all, you’re the one who might be adopting him. Surely you can name him whatever you like.” Even if your taste clearly is questionable.

Then Rei seemed to change her mind and admitted that Riki wasn’t a bad name, which made Minako smile in triumph.

At Rei’s next question, she nodded eagerly and began to unlock the cage door so that the two of them could meet. “Of course you can. We encourage all potential owners to spend a few hours with their future pets before adopting,” she answered, gently pulling the dog out.

For what it was worth, Riki-slash-Taro seemed really excited to see Rei, perhaps sensing the potential of a new home. He was hopping on his back feet to reach her, his tongue and tail wagging happily. She rubbed the dog’s back, loving the feel of soft fur under her hand.

“He seems to like you. I have to be honest; I had thought about adopting him myself if no one wants him by the end of the day,” she said wistfully. She looked up at Rei again and smiled. “Be sure to be good to him and give him a good home if you do decide to take him.”

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