Love Returns
By Lady1Venus

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This follows immediately after the poem "Remembering Love". You must read the poem first to understand the story.

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In the hallway just outside of the gym, Molly was standing alone. Her mother had just left her to head for home. They had had their little time together, but Mrs. Baker had to be up early the next morning to open her jewelry store in the morning. It didn't really matter anyway; Molly was going over to Lita's apartment for a private celebration.

As she stood alone, she couldn't get over the fact that she had seen a man who looked exactly like Neflite. She had made a promise to herself that it wouldn't ruin her night, and it wasn't going to.

"Hello," a male voice said from behind her.

Startled, Molly turned to see who was behind her. To her surprise, it was the man she saw sitting behind her mother. As close as he was, she could see the resemblance to Neflite. Molly jumped back a bit in shock when she noticed his hair. She had never known any other man who had long auburn hair like his.

"H...hello," she said, trembling. The man standing in front of her was wearing a nice suit. His shirt was a sage green with white pants like Neflite but he wore a white jack to go with the pants. Neflite always wore a lavender jacket and a cream-colored shirt. His face was also like Neflite's but he didn't have the cold, evil eyes. His eyes were soft and full of sad broken promises.

"Are you all right?" he asked, noticing her discomfort. "How about we go somewhere quiet?"

The voice sounded very familiar to her. It sounded exactly like him.

"I...I'm...going to a party soon," Molly said quietly. She wondered why he wanted to speak to her outside. She felt she'd be safer if she stayed inside.

"This won't take long, I promise," he said, and then added softly, his words barely audible, "And this time, I mean it."

"What do you mean?" she asked.

"I'll explain," he said. "Let's go outside for some fresh air, and we can talk."

Molly hesitated for a moment, and then agreed. Once outside, she could feel a nice cool summer breeze blowing across her face. It felt nice and soothing and she also felt safe with the man standing beside her. But she couldn't really understand why she felt safe with him. She didn't even know him.

"It's a nice night," he said, breaking the silence

"Yes it is," Molly said. It's a very beautiful night, she thought.

"Molly," he started.

"Huh?" she gasped. "How do you know my name?" She knew that he had heard her name during the graduation, but he had said it like he had known her for a long time. It was if it were Neflite. But how could that be? He died in her arms four years ago when she was fourteen.

"I heard your name called during the ceremony. And I know you," he said to her. "I have something to tell you and I need you to listen and don't interrupt until I'm finished."

Molly looked up into his blue eyes and nodded.

"Earlier, when you were up on stage, you looked at me. I could see in your eyes that something was puzzling you. Well, I can give you some answers."

Still looking in his eyes, she wondered to herself, how do you know I was looking at you? I was originally looking at my mother and I saw you.

"You had a love a few years ago, who died." The tall man just kept looking into her eyes, seeing the emotions moving through her like water flooding a small town. "What if I was to tell you your love is still alive?"

Molly gasped once again and took a step back. He didn't bother to move closer. He allowed her to have her space. He watched her take another step back.

When she was a little distance away from him, she started to look him over. She started at his head, noticing how his auburn hair blew so casually. His blue eyes were reflecting an emotion that she couldn't put her finger on. Other than his hands in his pants pockets, a mannerism she knew so well, he was standing at attention. The light of the full Moon made his eyes shine like stars.

When she raised her eyes back to his, she gasped again, taking yet another step back. "Neflite?" she whispered. "It's really you?"

The man then moved closer to her and grasped both of her hands with his own hands. "Yes, Molly. It's me," he whispered.

There was another long silence between the two as their eyes burned with emotions. After several minutes, Molly broke the silence.

"How...why...when..." Molly's words were getting messed up; she wasn't sure where to start.

Neflite put a finger to her lips. "Shh, I'll tell you everything you want to know. I have a lot to explain to you. Is there any way we can talk without anyone hearing us or interrupting us?"

He moved his finger away from her lips so she could speak.

She stood silent for a few more moments, allowing her mind to grasp the situation. Somehow, this man who resembled Neflite really was Neflite, and he was at her graduation. How did this happen? she asked herself. She looked back into Neflite's eyes, "I have a party to get to soon," she whispered. She was afraid if she tried to speak any louder, she would start crying. She didn't want to believe that Neflite was standing in front of her. This could be a trick from one of Sailor Moon's enemies. She was always a target for Sailor Moon's enemies.

"The party at Lita's doesn't start for another two hours."

"How do you know that?" she asked, finding her voice again.

"I overheard you and your friends talking about the party. Molly, please. If you want to know why I am alive, we must talk somewhere where we won't be interrupted," he said, taking a hold of her hands again.

"All right," she said. She did want to know why he was still alive. Molly slowly pulled away her hands from Neflite. "Stay here...I'll tell Serena, I'll meet her later at Lita's."

Neflite watched Molly go back into the school. While she was gone, he leaned against the wall of the school and waited for her. I am finally going to be able to tell her how much she means to me, he thought.

* * * * * * * *

Inside the school, Molly made her way to where she knew Serena was. Since there were a lot of people still around, Molly had to hold her bluish-green kimono close to her to get through the crowd. When she did find Serena, she was relieved.

"Serena," Molly said.

"Hey, Mol," Serena said. "Are you ready to head for Lita's?"

"Actually, I'm going to meet you there. I met someone who was at the graduation and wants to talk to me," Molly said.

"Ohhh," Mina said. "You found a guy?"

"Well," Molly said uncomfortably.

Serena saw Molly's discomfort. "Guys, give Molly and me a sec, ok."

With a nod of agreement, Molly and Serena left the little group and walked to a corner of the room.

"Molly, what is wrong?" Serena asked with concern.

"I...I..." Molly knew there was no fooling Serena. "Remember back when we were fourteen and I told you how Maxfield was really Neflite. Well, during the ceremony, I looked out into the audience and saw a man sitting behind my mother. He looked exactly like Neflite."

Serena's eyes became big at the mention of Neflite's name. "But Molly, he died."

"I know," Molly said. "But when it was over, the man came up to me and asked to speak to me outside. When we got outside..." she paused for a moment as a couple tears came to her eyes. She grabbed her friend's hands. "Serena, the man is Neflite. Neflite is alive."

Serena gasped. "How can that be?"

"I don't know. But he wants to talk to me and tell me why," Molly said nervously.

"Molly, would you like some company, in case he's an imposter?" Serena asked. Serena was shocked to hear that Neflite was alive but damned if she was going to let anything happen to her best friend.

"No, that's ok. I know it's him. He stands the same and the voice is the same and he looks just like him."

"Molly, anybody can mimic a stance and for the voice, well, they use...oh geez, what is that name," Serena said, snapping her fingers like it was going to help. "I don't know the name but it's a device that allows people to change their voice."

"All right, I'll show you and you can make the decision yourself," Molly said. She actually felt better with Serena coming with her to see Neflite.

"Ok, just give me a moment to tell the girls that I'm going with you for a few minutes," Serena said.

"Serena, what if you decide to stay?"

"If it is Neflite, he'll take care of you. If not, you're coming with me to Lita's. Fair enough?"

Molly nodded and watched as Serena went back to her friends. After a couple of minutes, she came back to Molly, and they walked outside to where Neflite stood.

Neflite wasn't surprised to see Serena with Molly when the two girls came out through the school doors. In fact, he had known that Molly would tell Serena that he was outside and she was going to come out with her. He straightened up from the wall and waited for Serena's reaction.

Serena took a good look at him and gasped. "Oh my god!" She covered her mouth to muffle her voice.

"Hello," Neflite said. He walked up to Serena and whispered so Molly wouldn't hear. "I don't know what Molly knows but I do remember that you are Sailor Moon."

"How can you be alive?" Serena whispered back.

Neflite moved away from her. "I'm going to explain that to Molly."

"I...I...I...I..." Serena stumbled over her words.

"Please, Serena," Neflite said. "I must speak to Molly. When I'm done, I'll take her to your party at your friend's home."

Before Serena could say anything, Neflite stood beside Molly. With a snap of his fingers, he and Molly disappeared. Serena stared in shock at where her best friend had stood. She had concrete proof that he was Neflite. He had vanished, taking Molly with him.

Before too long, Serena's friends came out of the school.

"Come on, Serena," Lita said. "I'd like to get things set up before Raye and the Outer Scouts join the party."

Serena shook her head, to focus on Lita's comment. "Ok, I'm coming." Though Serena was still shocked to see Neflite alive, it wasn't at all surprising anymore. She had seen enough weird things happen in her lifetime. She smiled knowing that Molly would now be happy.

* * * * * * * *

Neflite and Molly reappeared at the park where he died four years ago. Like Serena, Molly now had undeniable proof that the man standing beside her was Neflite. She moved away from Neflite and looked around. The park was all too familiar to her. She shivered at the memory of him dying in her arms. She looked at her hands like she could still see his green blood all over them.

"Why did you bring me here?" Molly asked, turning to Neflite. "This is where you died in my arms."

Neflite grasped her hands again and said, "I know, I have something I need to tell you. I wanted to tell you then remember what happened."

"Oh," Molly said. It was the only thing she could think of to say.

Neflite led her to the tree they where had sat before. Molly shivered again at the memory.

"Molly, the first thing I'm going to tell you is how I came back to life," he said. "I know you dated that... ah... unusual friend of yours for a while."

"I..." Molly started, but Neflite interrupted.

"Please, let me explain first," he said, and then continued. "Your constant thinking about me and love for me brought me back. And when you broke up with your friend, that made it even easier for me to come back.

"The more you thought about me, the closer I came to being alive again. At first, my soul lived in your body as I came back little at time. Then, a couple months ago, I regained consciousness in the hospital.

"When I was strong enough to speak, I asked the doctor what had happened. He said that somehow I had been found right here in the park, two weeks before I woke up. From what the doctor said, I was in a coma and had been for a while before someone found me."

"You were found right here, in a coma?" Molly asked.

"Yes. A couple of times during the two weeks when I was in the hospital, in the coma, the doctor wanted to pull the plug, as you humans would say. But he could never do it. He told me that every time he started to, something would come over him and stop him." Molly looked at him as he wrapped an arm around her.

"When I was released from the hospital, the first thing I did was to see how you were doing. I watched you for a while and found out that you were graduating. That is why I was at your school tonight."

For a while, Neflite just sat with her in silence, giving her time to absorb and understand what he had told her. She leaned against him and laid her head on his shoulder as she thought.

Finally she ended the silence. "I understand what you said. But that doesn't answer my question as to why we are here at the park."

"The last time I saw you, you were a young teenage girl, and now I see a beautiful young woman with a lot of wisdom," he commented.

He watched her blush. Shifting his position to look at her straight in face, he gently raised her chin so he could look in her eyes.

"We are here so I can tell you this." He paused for a moment. "Molly," he whispered, and moved his head closer to her. His lips were inches from hers. "I love you."

Before she could gasp or utter a word, his lips were softly on hers. At first she didn't respond, but when she felt his hands caressing her cheeks, she wrapped her arms around his waist and kissed back.

When she had been going out with Melvin, he had never kissed her. Sometimes she had wondered why, but now it didn't matter. Now she was having her first kiss from her one true love. It was like fate knew that Neflite was coming back and never wanted her to kiss Melvin.

For several minutes, Neflite brushed her lips with his in butterfly kisses but as Molly tried to move closer, he deepened the kiss.

Molly felt an electric shiver go through her as his arms made their way around to her back. One hand settled in her hair, the other around the curve of her back. She had never known a kiss could feel so comforting.

When Molly sighed softly, Neflite gently moved her lips apart so his tongue could enter her mouth. Molly, at first, was bit surprised by his forwardness but before too long she was responding to the kiss. They kissed for a few more minutes longer, but finally had to breathe.

Reluctantly, Neflite pulled away and whispered, "I love you."

"I love you," she whispered back.

The reunited couple sat against the tree in each other's arms and listened to the crickets. Molly didn't know how long they had been sitting there when she almost dozed off. She caught herself falling asleep and sat up.

"Neflite, what time is?" she asked.

"Around eleven," he answered.

"I'm going to be late for the party," she said, not sure if she still cared about going.

"This would be a perfect opportunity for me to be your date to the party," he smiled.

Molly didn't miss the humor in his voice. "All right."

Neflite stood up and helped Molly to her feet. With her safely in his arms, they vanished and reappeared right outside Lita's apartment door.

Before Molly could knock on the door, Neflite swiftly bent down and kissed her again. Molly knew that he was never going to leave her again. If his story hadn't convinced her, the kiss certainly did.

Again Neflite reluctantly let her go and she knocked on the door. When Lita answered the door and let them in, Molly introduced Neflite right away. None of the scouts were surprised to see Neflite. Serena had told them that Neflite was alive again and was telling Molly how he came back to life.

During the course of the party, Molly was so happy that Neflite was with her. There were a couple of slow songs where some of the couples danced. Among the couples dancing were Neflite and Molly. Dancing in each other's arms, they knew that fate had stepped in. They were soulmates and fate knew it.

During one dance, Molly recalled her thoughts earlier in the evening when she first seen Neflite sitting behind her mother. She had said that he was going to ruin her night and it didn't. In fact it made her night even better.

Neflite on the other hand was quite content to stay in Molly's arms forever. Even when the song was over, he didn't want to release Molly. Before retreating back to where they sat, Neflite whispered to Molly. "I'll never leave or hurt you again. And that I promise."

Molly smiled and snuggled against him. She knew he would never lie to her again, and that he would keep his promise.

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