Ami felt her heart jump into her throat when she entered the apartment after coming home after a rough battle and discovered her mother sitting on the coach, waiting for her. “What are you doing home?” she asked. “I thought you were working late tonight.”
“I’ll be asking the questions here, Ami,” her mother said in a stern voice, standing up. “When I came home and found you missing, I thought you might be out fooling around with some boy, but this…” She looked Ami over, reminding Ami that she had yet to let go of her Mercury transformation. “Cosplay?”
“Mama, it’s not what you --” She stepped forward, wincing when she put too much weight on her injured ankle.
Her mother gasped. “What happened to you?” For the moment seeming to forget her shock at Ami’s strange appearance, she came over and helped Ami hobble over to the couch, where she carefully pulled off Ami’s boot to examine the ankle. “It looks like it’s twisted,” the doctor said, taking one of the throw pillows and using it to prop Ami’s foot up on the coffee table. “Wait here. I’m going to get an ice pack.”
While her mother was in the kitchen, Ami thought about what she would say to her. There seemed little choice but to tell the truth. Had she remembered to de-transform before coming home, she might have been able to come up with a cover story to explain why she was out so late at night, but Ami saw no way to lie her way out of this situation.
Of course, even if she told her mother the truth, Ami doubted she would believe her. Dr. Saeko Mizuno did not believe anything that couldn’t be explained with science or logic. Even when Ami was a little girl, it was her artist father who had exposed her to myths and fairy tales; her mother preferred that she read only non-fiction.
“Here,” her mother said upon returning to the living room. She placed the ice pack against Ami’s twisted ankle and took a seat on the couch beside her daughter. “Now, tell me what happened, Ami. What were you doing out after midnight?”
Ami took in a deep breath and began her story, starting with her past life as Princess Mercury and continuing on through the events of the present day. She even told her mother a little about the future of Crystal Tokyo, thinking the existence of time travel would pique her interest as a scientist. Her mother, for her part, didn’t interrupt Ami even once, listening to the entire tale with an unreadable expression on her face.
“And, so, that’s what I’ve been hiding from you these past couple of years,” Ami said after she finished. “I’m sorry for lying -- Mama?”
Her mother caressed Ami’s face. “Oh, Ami, I’ve been too tough on you, haven’t I?”
“What?” That wasn’t the reaction she had expected.
“Don’t worry, dear. I’ll make an appointment with Dr. Chusonji tomorrow.”
Ami’s eyes widened, recognizing the name of one of her mother’s colleagues. “You sending me to a psychiatrist?”
“It’s obvious that you have turned to this ridiculous fantasy life as a way to deal with the stress of your stud--”
“But it’s true!” Ami insisted, her eyes watering. “You have to believe me, Mama!”
“I believe that you believe you are this…Sailor Mercury, but, sweetie, magic isn’t real,” her mother said, kissing her on the forehead like a little child. “It’s late now, so get some sleep, okay? We‘ll deal with this in the morning.”
DISCLAIMER: Sailor Moon is the property of Naoko Takeuchi.
AUTHOR’S NOTE: Any comments or criticisms can be sent to me at ElysionDream@aol.com. First place winner of the “No More Secrets” challenge at the “sailormoonland” community at Livejournal.