I never expected to fall in love.
When I first came to you, I was looking for somebody to save Elysion from Queen Nehelenia and the Dead Moon, but the person I met that day was so much more than that. She was kind, and sweet, and brave… I think it was your bravery that impressed me most. I was never a very brave person. My limited powers as a guardian priest were weak, and I depended on other people to fight on my behalf. But you, my maiden, you were truly a soldier protected by the moonlight. Though your powers were immature compared to those of your mother, you did everything you could do in order to save me and Elysion. I’m not sure if I ever thanked you for that; if I haven’t, then I thank you now.
Living in Elysion, I never had many friends. After the Golden Kingdom fell, my only companions were the Maenads, who I loved like elder sisters. Then I met you. I’m ashamed to admit I didn’t trust you at first. For so many years, I was isolated from other people; it was difficult for me to open up to a stranger. You accepted me as a friend right away, though, no questions asked. You have no idea how much it meant to me when you told that one Lemures that you didn’t want to own me, that you only wanted to be my friend. I realized I wanted to be your friend, too.
It’s difficult to pin down the moment my feelings became more than that. I could perhaps point to the time when you and Usagi switched ages due to the Dead Moon’s magic. You were so beautiful in your adult body, the lady you had long dreamed of becoming. Your dream had come true, yet because I meant more to you, you cast away the magic and returned to your proper age. I knew then that I could trust you completely and revealed to you my true form. I trusted you with my secrets, just as you had done with me.
But I think I fell in love with you before that. I just couldn’t admit it to myself at the time. Perhaps I felt guilty. My homeland was in peril; it wasn’t the time to think about love, but is there such a thing as a right time to fall in love? When we met, you were just a child. You were wise beyond your years, but still a little girl. Physically, I looked only a few years older than you, but I had lived through countless centuries. We were born at different times, in different eras, but as I stand before you now, I know that I had been waiting all my life to meet you, and it was well worth the wait.
Maiden, your most cherished dream has finally come true. You have become a true lady, as beautiful and strong as your idolized mother -- no, even more so in my eyes. Today, I hope gives birth to a new dream, a dream that the two of us can share. I dream of building a life together with you, filled with as much joy and happiness as experienced by your own parents, the King and Queen. I dream of a family, of children and grandchildren, and maybe even great-grandchildren if we are lucky enough to live that long. I dream of waking up next to you each morning and falling asleep in your embrace each night.
I want to remain by your side for the rest of my life, my maiden. If you will have me, I promise to be someone for you to depend on, someone who will always be there for you as you have always been there for me. I vow to shower you with all the love and devotion you deserve, and I will do my best to make you the happiest woman in the world. But most of all, I promise to make all your dreams come true, because you have already done so for me. I love you, my maiden.
AUTHOR’S NOTE: Any comments or criticisms can be sent to me at ElysionDream@aol.com. First place winner of the “I Do” challenge at the “sailormoonland” community at Livejournal.