Elements of Hope

Chapter 1

© 2001 by Millerna

This page was last modified: 2001/05/08


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Author's Note:

This is the first chapter of a post-Hades fanfic I've been working on, the tittle is yet undecided If anyone has any ideas, I'd be happy to hear them. c&c is always appreciated. Flames will be cheerfully ignored.

Disclaimer: Saint Seiya plot and character belong to Masami Kurumada and Toei Animation. I do not own Saint Seiya and I make no profit from it. No offence was intended.


Elements of Hope - Chapter 1

© 2001 by Millerna

Introduction:

The porcelain woman-child, held the brown-haired boy in her fragile arms as if to protect him, her lavander hair spread across his features as her face bowed over his. Her lips mouthed his name in silent, desperate anguish. Around her the ruins of a long forgotten civilization flamed, it was a scene straight from the most beautiful, horrid fairy tale.

The princess had lost her prince. And could not find him, his broken body was craddled in her arms but his soul had long gone, and his heart, ah, his heart bled.

The others watched her in quiet fascination, her despair was oddly enthralling, she no longer was the Goddess foretold but a more evolved figment of a selfish young woman once set aside. In her grief, she became a spectacle, who knew she could've cared so much...

She raised her face to the heavens in something that might be a plea, her eyes a mixture of anger and grief...and in those black pools lay a promise.

Seiya!

* * *

The young man rose with a groan from the uncomfortable bedding, his entire body felt as if someone had flogged him to bed the night before. He shook his head in effort to clear his pained mind to no avail. Looking around himself he was utterly shocked. He was home! At the Graad Foundation, but that was impossible...

"What the-!"

"No foul language please, children may be watching, you know!" A stern woman's voice made him turn violently to his left, gathering his defences imeadiatly around him.

"Who the hell?" He demanded not bothering to conceal his anger. He had always been impulsive, it was his way.

"Rude and dumb as a doorknob too, hmm." The woman mused.

"Well, what can you expect, the poor boy has been slammed in the head one too many times! Look at that ridiculous "helmet"! What does she think she's doing anyway? Running a beauty peagent?" The man's voice sounded slightly amused.

"Nani?" The boy cried out in shock, his eyes focused on a dark corner of the room, straining his eyes to see into the corner. Indeed, a woman's well-endowed shape could be seen stading beside a more flopsy shapeless body that he usely associated with old age.

"Welcome, Pegasus!" The woman moved forward.

"You've made a real mess of things, boy." The elderly man took a step to be beside her.

Seiya fell out of the bed.

"Oh, dear, what did I say? Helmet safety!"

* * *

"Saori-sama, please, you must get out of bed." Tatsumi aproched the girl on the plush, four poster bed, cautiously. Careful not to upset her, he called out her name, "Saori-sama."

Saori-sama, poor Saori-sama!

Since the day of her arrival Saori had taken refugee in her late Grandfather's bedroom. She had locked herself in, not even allowing the maids the time to dust the unused bedroom. She had answered to no one, not even her pesky children. The efeminate one, Shun, had knocked on her door for the last three days trying to coax his mistress to open her doors and take some food, but Saori had ignored all, finally in desperation the young man had turned to Tatsumi for help.

Tatsumi understood that she must have been through an awful ordeal and he did not think that breaking into what little privacy his mistress had to herself was the correct form of action. Damn those children!

Only the thought of Shun barging in on his mistress and disturbing her further had made Tatsumi go along with it, he would protect Saori!

"Saori-san...please, you must eat a little." The efeminate came in carrying his precious silver tray.

" Let her be." Tatsumi hissed in a whisper.

"Saori?" Shun moved towards the bed and drew the canopi curtains away. Tatsumi had the urge to slap the insolent one, how dare he! Shun awarded him with a indifferent look.

A tiny sigh conformed that the tossled figure had indeed taken notice of them. Tatsumi contented his rage with opening her curtains in a less then civil manner. Saori's groan startled him.

" Tatsumi!" The young woman's sleep groggy voice sounded out from underneath her covers. Tatsumi knew Saori like the back of his hand, she was not pleased.

"Saori-sama, I apologize, the children were frightned that maybe-"

" That maybe I'd have slit my wrists by now? They would like that wouldn't they?" Her cry was slightly muffled by the covers giving her an odd childlike quality. Shun was not amused, leaning forward and in lightning speed, he viciously yanked her covers from her, exposing a startled Saori.

Tatsumi averted his eyes from the pale visage of his shocked mistress. Shun glared down at her as Saori pulled her nightgown tightly over her breasts to her throat. Her mouth opened in a perfect soundless O.

"Not only unfair, that was uncalled for!" Shun snapped in a show of rage very rare to him. He took a deep breath, watching the young woman cautiously.

In the last three days Saori had gone through a transformation, her pure, dark eyes, which he had so admired on her now looked like giant bruises on a too pale face. Her hair tumbled over her shoulders in a tangled cloud. To her credit, Saori looked like hell.

"Shun?" She breathed softly.

"You can't simply lie there, you must get up, Saori. For good or for worse. Come on." He coaxed her in a more kindly manner.

"How dare you! Who do you think you are?" Saori composed her undignified self, sitting up straight on the bed, clutching a pillow to her chest. "I demand you leave!"

"Saori-san..." he began quietly, taking a seat beside her on the bed, Saori flinched away from him as she would have from a snake. He sighed miserably. "Please, we have been so worried about you."

"Worried, indeed! Like Ikki was worried? How long did it take for the proud Phoenix to flee, hm?"

"Saori, you are unfair!" He turned to her with his palms opened, "Please, eat something at the very least."

"An hour, two? Long enough for him to realize that I was no longer the precious Goddess or just enough time for him to realize his bother is a monster!" He winced as if she had slapped him and Saori's own eyes went wide.

"Shun, gomen nasai, I didn't..."

"Saori, you weren't the only one who lost him, granted for you it was different, but we all suffered and still do." He whispered in a choked voice.

"Go away, Shun." She closed her eyes tightly, "Please, Shun, just go away."

"No, Saori-sama, I won't and I can't. Seiya wouldn't be pleased if I did." He took her shoulders in his hands and forced her to look at him, a gentle smile for her.

"What did Saori-sama say, you little filth. Leave her be!" Feeling his pride flood him, Tatsumi, yanked at the boy's arm. "Get away from her." With a sharp movement Shun deliberatly sent the older man flying across half the room. Tatsumi landed roughly against a small table and chair, upseting the furniture and breaking a small picture frame. Saori let out a shrill cry.

"We aren't children you can beat any longer, touch me again and I'll show you what I mean!" Saori stared at him in silent shock, her eyes searching.

"Shun?" She was uncertain and badly frightned, as if the poor girl hadn't had enough. He took her right hand in his left one and squeezed it tightly.

"Saori-san, I'm sorry. I've been so angry these last few days. I haven't been myself, forgive me." He smiled at her and almost at once she could see the Shun she knew. The boy whose gentleness surpassed that of any other living creature she had ever come upon.

And yet...his eyes were different. They were harder, more unclear, different from what she remembered. Her pride left her then and she understood, this one cared. He was here because he cared for her. He cared for her as more than his Goddess, he was her friend. She squeezed back his hand and smiled.

"We have all suffered, my friend. Now, if you'll get me that tray I saw you come in with, I must say I am famished!" He grinned at her boyishly the slightest flush gracing his features. She was amused despite herself.

"Well, you're in for a real treat, then." He retrieved the tray from where he had set it on a dresser, "Shiryu made the puding, Hyoga made the french toast and scrambled eggs, Tatsumi fried some fish, Shiryu got encouraged by that time and prepared what looks like tempura. Hyoga lost a bet and prepared some carrot juice-

"Lost a bet?" She cried out, surprised.

"Ahm, yes, with Jabu, he drank three litres of carrot juice...and some ...other stuff." At this point Shun looked very disgusted.

"Three litres!"

"In thirty seconds." Shun finished meekly. Saori shook her head in dismay.

"Well, I'm not even going to ask you what the bet was!" Shun gave her a 'you don't want to know' look.

"What do you think, Saori-san? Voila!" He pulled the cover off the tray with a flourish. Saori sighed miserably.

"I say we go for take out."

* * *

"Nani?" He cried out in dispair staring below at the "ground".

"Will you please stop saying that?" The woman snapped.

Seiya craddled his head on his arms and sighed tragically, " So this is what real hell is like!"

"Believe you me, you don't know what real hell is, child!" She frowned at him, crossly.

"There's no floor! How can this room not have a floor?" Seiya screamed, he knew he wasn't the brightest, but still, this would have Shiryu's mind for breakfast.

The woman glanced down at her bare feet, indeed, when looking down like this it seemed as if they were suspended in the air, illogical. She smiled like a cat.

"Oops, would you prefer this?" With a wave of her hand she made the entire room disapear. Seiya's bed included. It wasn't air that they were suspended in, it was something so unimaginable that his mind refused to take it in understand, a cold feeling griped him. There was nothing! Not color, not light, nothing! He and this woman were suspended in eternity.

"You see here what you want, Seiya. It's only an illusion. Nothing more than that. You saw your room at the Graad Foundation previously only because you willed it." She was floating above him, upside down in fact, only her hair was still in place, perfectly in place in fact. Her hair! The long white-gray waves that fell to her feet and beyond, he had never seen a creature with hair that length. She had no color, though, her pigmintation was odd, she was too white, not translucent, but white, her eye color was undecided, grayish-white, perfectly pale. Her lips completely bloodless. An odd creature, voluptous in body but rather frightful looking. She awarded him with that same knowing grin.

"You don't like? Would you prefer a redhead, then?" He watched mesmorized as her hair metamorphed into a short, red bob. "Blue eyes?" She winked him the new color. "How about my breasts?" She pointed to a very gifted cleavage. "Too much? Too little? You can't have too much of one good thing, right?" Her breasts swelled to three times their size and bounced under the weight. BOING!

"Oh, Goddess, you're NUTS!" Seiya fell over himself and set off floating. "Damn, I can't get one break! Hey, phyco lady, help me stop, will you?" He flailed his arms about to no good. He was now spinning as well as drifting. Or at least he thought he must be drifting, there was nothing for him to distinguish that he had moved at all...but it felt like movement, didn't it?

She stood before him, impatiently filing rather long, malicious white nails. He took notice of her clothes then, white flowing robes with runes stiched to the cuffs of the sleeves, the hems and her neckline. A witch? She looked up at him, a frown gracing her bloodless lips. Deadly beautiful.

"Are you quite through exposing yourself for a moron?" She flicked a strand of white hair back. He closed his eyes tightly, opened them and nodded, staring into her colorless orbs, his face set in determination.

"What is this?" He waved around himself to illustrate.

"Now that is the first intelligent thing you've said!" She floated to his eye level and, before he could do anything about it, kissed him icily, her embrace unbearably cold. He pulled desperatly from the woman, panting loudly as she chuckled.

"Sybil, stop tormenting the boy." It was the Old Man, Seiya turned to see him. Sybil only grinned and licked her lips.

"Mortals are so warm..." Sybil traced her lips with a long fingernail. Seiya frowned at the Old Man impatiantly.

"Well?" He prompted.

"This is the Cage. You know it as Olympus, I suppose." The old man straightned himself. "What's left of Olympus, anyhow."

"Impossible!" Seiya snapped. Sybil giggled.

"He's so cute! No wonder she likes him so."

"Who are you?" The woman leaned in to catch him in her arms once more but Seiya floated safely away from her or so he hoped.

"Only servants of a Greater Master. It is not important right now." The old man wore long, dark blue robes and pointed wizard's hat, Seiya was suddenly struck by the ridiculousness of the situation.

"The white witch and the blue wizard! I'm sorry, I don't know where your dragon is, if you leave him alone, he'll come home, wagging his tail behind him!"Oh, God, I think I'm in the midst of a nervous breakdown!

"Damn, that's it! Take me home, now!"Seiya shrieked, his eyes promissing hell. "Let me go!"

The old man smiled and Sybil laughed.

"Whatever you say...pegasus."

 

* * *

"Hyoga-san?" Shun inquired softly, the ice warrior sat sullenly, playing with his noodles, literally.

"I hate take out." Hyoga remarked dryly. Shiryu smiled gently.

"And I bet that "thing" you drank doesn't help much either."

"Oh, Goddess, Shiryu, not when we're eating." Shun made a face.

"It wasn't that bad, really." Hyoga defended himself, a wry smile tugging the corner of his lips. "As my master once said, all hardships make you stronger, not weaker." Shun shook his head and Shiryu pulled out his newspaper once more.

Shun turned to is right, where the fourth member of their party sat quietly , eating her meal with excellent grace. Saori's dark eyes stared straight ahead of her at a child playing with his parents. Her eyes softened when the child, a toddler, slipped and hit his head on the table top, the mother imeadiatly swooped down and pulled the stunned babe to her breast, cooing gently to it. The babe fussed for a moment then quietened, eased by his parent's love.

It was, he noted, a beautiful babe, dark eyes and hair. He wondered what she, the maiden goddess incarnate, was thinking of.

"Saori?" His voice was gentle yet deep. She looked at him then and his breath caught in his throat, even with all her suffereing, she hadn't ceased to look beautiful. Her eyes were clear and her smile peaceful but her words chilled him when she said them.

"I will see him again, Shun."He could only stare at her wondering if the others had heard her light whisper. Saori...poor Saori.

"Saori-sama..." He started softly, determined not to have her hurt by illusions. "You know...it's impossible..." She hushed him, shaking her head.

"No, Shun." She took his hands in hers, squeasing them briefly. Her gaze was steady and determined, the others looked at her in awe. She smiled and her voice was loud and clear, the voice of a woman assured of herself.

"I will see him again."

* * *

He could not recall exactly what happened in the next few moments, a door opened up below his feet and swallowed him down like a cheap Alice in Wonderland movie. He yelled out in anger and heard Sybil answer back with a thrilling laugh.

Öh, dear, we should have given the poor boy a helmet, you know..." The old man lamented.

Sybil laughed again.

Seiya was still falling, his arms flayed in the dark, like the room he had been in this too was a place of nothingness, only very dark to it's twin. The tunnel seemed to go on forever and Seiya could no longer see the door from where he had fallen or hear Sybil's enchanting laughter for that matter.

He closed his eyes firmly and envisioned Saori, beautiful, sad, wise, smiling. He wanted, no he needed to see her again, to find out if she was more than his Goddess. To find out if she... He would not die here. He needed to go back, damn the witch and wizard. He needed her!

"SAORI!"

A door opened below magically and he went through it involuntarily, landing heavily and painfully on the green grass bellow. He hit his head and cursed under his breath.

"Oops, sorry about that, we weren't expacting you to...fall from the sky." A young man stood before him. He was red-haired, with pale blue eyes and pale skin reminding Seiya oddly of Hyoga. The man grinned pleasently, or pleasently enough. He pushed a long red lock from his face, irritatedly. "But then Renily has to have his fun."

"Cooper, we don't have much time for this." A firm female voice cut in.

Seiya turned to look up on her, she had long wheat-blond hair, resonably caught up in a braid. Her eyes were large and bright green. She was tall like her companion and very pretty too. Seiya blinked.

"Who?"

The red-haired man grinned. "I'm Cooper and this is Clarissa," he gestured towards the woman who stood by him. "We are appreantices to Lord Renily. The Blue wizard, I think you called him?"

Seiya frowned, apprehensive. "What do you want of me?"

Clarissa smiled and squatted to eye level, her clothing was odd to say the least, something very mediavel, like hunters clothes, leathers, a tunic, leggings and highboots. Cooper wore a similar outfit.

" We're here to help you, Seiya, Athena needs you now and this world too, if it is to survive."

Athena, the name cut him like a knife, he climbed to his feet fast, "What have you done to her,"His voice was challeging, the woman stared at him calmly.

"We," and she specifically put an emphasis on it, "have done nothing nor will we, but if you don't intervine there is one that will."

"And that's not something you want, is it, Seiya?" the red haired man helped the girl up, looking over his shoulder at Seiya.

"We will be your guides, Seiya." Cooper declared.

"My guides?"

"Hai, Seiya, your guides through Olympus." Clarissa responded while going through a backpack methodologically, checking her supplies.

"After all..." Cooper continued for her, "you did die."

"Nani?!"

End of Chapter 1 -- To Be Continued


Author's End Note:

Liked this story? Hated this story? Tell Millerna about it! Really, she needs to know if anyone as much as reads the crap she writes! So have fun and flame Millerna at: rizental@stratus.swi.com.br!


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