Split in Two
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Split in Two

Authoress' Notes: This is the second to last chapter of SiT, and the last chapter is already in progress. It should be posted a lot faster than this one. I rather like this chapter, don't know why. Probably because it's from Nova's POV.

Magic Knight Rayearth is copyright CLAMP and Kodansha. I am naught but a lowly fangirl. As always, C&C would be very much appreciated.

Chapter 6: Last Chances

As Hikaru fell asleep, Nova's gentle smile disappeared, only to be replaced by one of undeniable bitterness as she learned the truth behind Hikaru's reasons for not letting her return to her home. Removing her body from Hikaru's, Nova slid, catlike to the floor, and phased through the door as to not make a sound. Once outside the bedroom, she slammed her small fist into the wall, bringing thin blood. She punched it again, wondering if she'd be hurting Hikaru too.

Nova stifled a yelp, as the pain hurt more than she thought it would. But it was a good hurt. There was some sort of raw, unheeded pleasure as she abused the knuckles of herself, and those of her twin. Slowly, she licked the traces of blood off of her fingers and sat down, her back against the wall, staring at the bedroom door in front of her. Tucking her knees to her chest, a sudden thought came to her and made her laugh shortly.

*We've switched places, Hikaru.*

For as far as Nova could remember, at least until Eagle was killed, she had wanted nothing more than to spend her life with her positive mirror. No thanks to Debonair, she had honestly believed at one point that Hikaru could actually remain beside her, and love only her. And there was a time when she would have sold her soul to feel Hikaru's body pressed against her own, the Knight's sienna eyes locked with her own ruby ones, radiant and shining.

(be careful what you wish for, it may come true)

But now...now all she wanted was to go back to Hikaru's heart. Nova knew better than anyone else, about the risks Hikaru took in keeping her around. That with every passing day, the chances of them uniting, the chances of Hikaru being a whole person again were slim to nothing. How could Hikaru even think that keeping her darker half around would prevent her from being alone? Didn't she see that her fainting spell out by the fountain was proof of that?

A sigh escaped from her mouth, as she lay the side of her head against her knees, trying to control the rapid beating of her heart that had suddenly increased within the past two days. It was as if her heart were rebelling against her existence. It was strange how Hikaru's nerves were unwavering when confronted with monsters, and standing up for what was right, but then turning to jelly when confronted with a death she worked so hard to prevent, splitting in two to hide from the shame and pain she felt...

Rudely interrupted from her thoughts, she heard soft footsteps coming from the end of the hall and heading towards her. Looking up, she saw Lantis striding towards her. *Or perhaps Hikaru's room.* she thought wryly. *Keep your pants on loverboy, or I'll castrate you.*

Suddenly, as if he had read her thoughts, he turned around to face her with his calm, unruffled expression. "Have you seen Hikaru, Nova? I'd like to see her."

*Yeah, I'll just bet you do.* thought Nova sulkily. But for some reason, the stinging words she usually had saved for him didn't come. Quietly, she pointed towards Hikaru's door. "She's sleeping right now. Like you should be."

Lantis' reply was level. "The pot's calling the kettle black. Why are you up anyway? I thought you usually slept with her."

"I'm tired of waiting for Hikaru to grow up." Nova heard herself reply flatly. Suddenly, as if realizing what she just said, Nova's hand covered her mouth. *Did I just call Hikaru immature?* Quickly, she covered herself and scowled at Lantis. "Why would you care, anyway?"

The Kailu stared at her, as if the answer was obvious. "You are Hikaru as well. You drilled that into our heads long ago." But before Nova could answer, he added: "Maybe it's you I need to see. Clef believes that it's Hikaru's lack of faith in human mortality that is keeping you separate. If he is right, maybe we can figure out something to do about it."

Nova's eyes widened. "Clef is right. She thinks that I can't leave her, because in a strange twisted way, I AM her." she replied softly. She takes death hard, and creates annoying obsessive doppelgangers like yours truly to fill the gaping emptiness in her soul."

Lantis' mouth twitched slightly. "If you realize just how right you are, we might be able to do business."

The dark sprite giggled, slightly surprised at Lantis' quick wit. "Do you have any ideas then?"

"I have one." he slowly replied. "But it'll involve a lot of risk. Do you honestly want to return to Hikaru's heart?"

Nova was confused. "What do you mean? Of course I want to be with Hikaru again."

Lantis shook his head. "I can see that. But this plan that I have...is sort of spinoff of Fuu's. My plan is to have you split into two separate people with Clef and the Creator's help. If all goes well, those she loves, as well as the Creator will be able to convince Hikaru just how much she's cheating herself, and reabsorb you. But it will not work if you want Hikaru to be a shadow of YOU instead."

The doppelganger stared at the tall man before her with a level gaze. "Trust me, I don't want Hikaru to be my shadow. I don't like being here. It sucks, quite frankly."

"Then we have a deal." replied Lantis. "You bring Hikaru to the throne room by 10:00 in the morning, and Clef will perform the operation." He paused, and then picked up Nova's bruised hand, looking at it. "Oh, and one more thing. Hikaru is suffering enough as it is. No more of this, Nova. You hear me?"

Nova yanked her hand free from Lantis' grasp and shot a murderous glare at him. "Bite me. I don't take advice from walking piles of armor." Without another word, she stalked off, leaving Lantis torn between insult and amusement.

End Chapter 6
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