Part 7: The Senshi Kurai and Sailor Earth's Pasts
Quick Copyright notes: This is a fanfic based on Bishoujo Senshi Sailormoon, an anime/manga created by Takeuchi Naoko. Characters belong to her and all others associated with rights [Toei, Bandai, Kodansha, etc], but the storyline, ideas, and any other characters are created by me. 1996 - Jackie Chiang
"Usagi-chan! Rei-chan! Minako-chan!" Terra yelled from the exit of the maze. She was a great actress, and her voice seemed to be genuinely hysteric. ,P> On cue, Usagi, Haruka, Michiru, Setsuna, and Hotaru came running out. Their faces were drawn and worried.
"What's wrong, Terra-chan?" Usagi asked.
"Mako-chan is gone," Terra said breathlessly. "I went to the greenhouse to check on her but she wasn't there! Do you think she is all right?"
There was a stunned silence.
Of course, Terra," Setsuna said reassuringly, though she herself did not seem reassured.
"Mako-chan went home sick with Minako-chan and Rei-chan," Hotaru said quickly. "She really wasn't feeling well."
"Oh, thank goodness," Terra said, feigning relief. "I thought something dreadful had happened! There were some overturned tables and broken pots in the greenhouse, so I assumed..."
"It's ok, Terra," Michiru said. "I'm sure it was an accident." She shot a glance at Usagi, whose face was all white.
"I'd think we had better go home," Haruka suggested.
"Thank you for inviting us over," Hotaru said smiling, afraid that she might have hurt Terra's feelings.
"Oh, ok," Terra said, putting on an innocent smile. "I understand. You can go into the house and pick up your things. I'll see you tomorrow in school."
"Hai," Michiru said. "Sayonara."
The girls walked into the house and disappeared from view. Taking out her miniature computer, she entered a code. Watching the screen with narrowed eyes, the dark haired girl saw the others leave. The cameras around the house were very useful, she decided.
The girls left the house and through the gate, and the doors swung behind them, securely locked. Terra smiled with satisfaction. She twirled around in a dizzy circle laughing for a long time.
Everything is perfect, she thought as she went to bed. Soon the princesses will be happy. Terra drifted off to sleep.
"So they have Mercury, Mars, Venus, and Jupiter," Luna concluded as they sat at the lake. She stared wearily at the remaining girls and Mamoru. Artemis was sniffling at Minako's disappearance. Usagi, Mamoru, and Hotaru were sitting on the grass, and the other three girls sat on benches. They were completely alone that afternoon, as they were surrounded by trees from behind and a lake in front.
"I just wish we knew what they wanted with us..." Michiru whispered, watching some ducks swimming by. "How can they look so much like us? The mirror just flashed a picture of the Moon Kingdom... An enigmatic answer, as usual." She smiled slightly.
Usagi looked down at her hands. She squeezed them tightly. We will get you back, minna-chan, she thought. Mamoru gave her a reassuring smile, knowing exactly what she felt.
"And how does this Sailor Earth know what they want?" Haruka demanded, pushing her hair out of her face. "She saves us but tells us nothing. I wonder what she wants."
"We can be sure that they will be after us next," Setsuna pointed out. "If Earth is correct, the Senshi Kurai will want to kidnap us as well."
"We must protect the Princess and Prince," Hotaru said quietly.
"As you should," a voice said quietly from behind them.
They all turned around. Sailor Earth stood against a tree, her expression serene and thoughtful. Haruka started to get up but Michiru stopped her.
"What do you want?" Haruka asked sharply. She distrusted Earth, but then again, she distrusted most people when it came to her friends and the royal family.
"I have come to answer your questions," she answered softly. She put out her hand in the air and a crystal rose materialized inside her grasp.
"What is that?" Mamoru asked, staring at the girl. He felt as if he knew her intimately from long ago.
Earth smiled affectionately at the rose. "This is one of the Seventeen Periapts, the Crystal Rose, that is in my possession." talisman "Periapts?" Artemis repeated. His tail twitched.
Earth nodded. "The treasures of the Moon Kingdom, worth much more than any riches or jewels." She did not elaborate.
"Is that what the Senshi Kurai want? Are they trying to take over Earth?" Usagi asked.
Earth said, smiling sadly. "You see, they care nothing about taking over the Earth or the universe. Their reason is just as devious, for they plan to kill you all; they will be indirectly responsible for the world to be overtaken, nonetheless."
"So why do they want us?" Michiru inquired. "You still haven't answered that."
"Revenge for what?" Haruka snapped. "We had never even met them before they came!"
"No, Sailor Uranus," Earth said. "You have, all of you before, a millennia ago..."
"On the Moon Kingdom?" Usagi asked.
"How? When?" Mamoru said.
Earth stared at the lake, thinking on how to break the news. "You may be wondering how they look like you," she said finally.
"Yes," Haruka said drolly, smiling humorously. "The question had occurred to us. Are they clones? Just one of those one in a trillion mistakes? Plastic surgery? Magic? What?" Her voice had a sarcastic ring to it, but no one bothered to apologize for her.
Earth gave her a look, and Haruka became quiet. "None of those... I'm not really sure how to put this..." One look at Haruka's face made Earth plunge on ahead. "They are your twins."
Deadly silence. No one spoke, sitting like mannequins, unmoving, with stunned looks.
Earth used the opportunity to continue. "Contrary to their unloving behavior, each of you has a twin from the Senshi Kurai, save Mamoru-san. You have already had the delight of Hermes's, Ares's, Aphrodite's, and Zeus's unexpected visits."
She held up her rose, and it floated above her hand. A picture projected from it. It's power became apparent. Four lovely girls' faces appeared; everyone recognized Ares, Hermes, and Aphrodite, and deduced Zeus's picture.
"These are the more powerful adversaries of the Senshi Kurai..." Earth said, motioning her hand. The picture faded out and was replaced by four new girls. The Outer Senshi gasped. "Meet Poseidon, Sunaru, Cronus, and Hades, the twins of the Outer Senshi. Their powers are double the others, four times the strength of Ares." Earth had an amused smile when she came to Ares.
"However, they are probably equal in strength with you," Earth continued. "These are their guardians and guides, Cynthia and Phoebe."
Luna and Artemis stared in bemusement at the two cats.
"Isn't Phoebe a girl's name?" Artemis managed to say with disgust. Luna hit him on the head.
"Last, their leader, Princess Hecate."
Usagi went white as a sheet when she saw Hecate. Exactly like me, she thought, except for her hair and the black moon...
The picture faded and the rose dropped into Earth's outstretched hand. She waited patiently for everyone to absorb this information. Finally Haruka spoke.
"As you said, they weren't exactly buddy buddy with us. Why is that?" Her tone was a tinge sarcastic, but she was no longer directing them at Earth.
"Back to this revenge thing... As twins, each of you and your twin were princesses. Unfortunately, only one girl was allowed to stay for a long period of time in the Moon Kingdom, while the other had to eventually return to the home planet. The girl who stayed longer in the Moon Kingdom was considered the true princess of the planet, and therefore the heir to the throne. The twin who returned to the home planet was reduced to merely a princess with no hope for a future as anything but a common magician."
"Wasn't that terribly unfair?" Hotaru asked, who felt that the system was unjust.
"Yes," Earth acknowledged. "The current ruling heads had to choose between the two daughters as their official heir, as two Queens at the same time were forbidden."
"So we were the chosen heirs-," Michiru said, catching on.
"- and our twins were not," Setsuna added.
"Thereby which comes the anger and resentment, which spawned the need for revenge," Usagi whispered, finishing the statement.
Earth sighed. "This is rather complicated. It is so much more than that. I truly believe that your twins were happy for you, though hurt by the rejection... They wished to remain with you forever... We did love our twins so very much," Earth added quietly. Everyone took notice of the 'we,' indicating that she herself had a twin.
"The reasons for each twin for hate must have been compounded... But even that would not be all. As you know, Beryl and the Dark Kingdom attacked the Moon Kingdom. What you may not know is that they also destroyed the civilizations on the planets of Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto. Beryl and Metallia sensed the agonization of the unchosen Princesses who were in the Moon Kingdom, and therefore influenced their pain to hate. The Princesses must have been with them when they attacked the Moon Kingdom; that is how they could have discovered the Princess Hecate. Queen Serenity used the Ginzuishou on the Dark Kingdom, the Princesses and their followers must have become separated somehow, and placed into a sleep for a long period of time, whereupon they have now awaken and remembered only hate."
"So Beryl is once again the cause of another problem," Luna said grimly.
"You mentioned magicians," Haruka said. "What does that mean?"
Earth smiled. "All of us had the ability to use magic... It was a very useful talent. The Princesses who became Sailor Senshi were less apt than their twins, who had time to study. Since the Senshi were all killed and reincarnated, they lost the ability to use pure magic, and your powers are the only form you have left. The Senshi Kurai have both pure magic and transferred magic."
"How do you know all of this?" Artemis asked. "And you mentioned that you had a twin...?"
"I know this because of my especially strong magic ability. I was relatively unknown as a Sailor Senshi. Only Queen Serenity, my twin, and the Outer Princesses knew about me. They preferred to keep everything simplified. My duty was to prevent attacks from coming if they got past the Outer Senshi, and before they reached the Moon Kingdom itself. When the Dark Kingdom attacked, I was mortally wounded. The Crystal Rose attempted to save me, but I was nevertheless killed. Reincarnated on Earth, the Crystal Rose managed to preserve my memory of the past and my magic powers."
"And your twin?" Mamoru asked, staring at her. Earth smiled at him tenderly, but it was not a romantic smile. It indicated love and affection, as in sisterly affection...
"My twin is the Prince of Earth, Prince Endymion," Earth said calmly. "You."
"That explains why we felt you were so familiar," Mamoru said dazedly. "You're my sister..."
"Of course," Michiru said slowly. "Why didn't we realize this earlier? The Senshi of Earth is a Princess and would have to be connected to the Prince of Earth, Mamoru..."
"Well," Earth admitted dryly, her eyes glittering from behind her mask, "I sort of put a confusion spell on everyone when it came to me. So no one would guess anything before it was time for you to know..."
"Why didn't you tell all of this to us earlier?" Usagi cried out suddenly, tears streaming down her angry face. "Before they were kidnapped?!"
"Princess," Earth said softly, "it's not easy to explain why I waited. At first, I only wanted to throw away these memories... Deny who I was and am. I wanted to be normal, not to have to burdened with these problems... I wouldn't expect any of you to understand."
"I understand perfectly," Haruka said, looking down, remembering her attitude with becoming a Sailor Senshi.
"I do too," Usagi admitted quietly.
"Now that you know," Earth went on, "you must be prepared for them anytime, any day, anywhere. Your twins are sure to be after you, including Mamoru-san. They have two commanders, Eris and Gaia, as well as several other followers. Revenge and the darkness have tainted their minds, clouded their vision, and even I do not know how it will end.
"I have nothing more to offer you than my help and my powers," Earth continued. She held out her crystal rose. An intense yellow beam showered upon the Outer Senshi, whose eyes were closed as they floated up.
"What's happening?" Usagi asked, worried.
Earth didn't answer. She concentrated her energy into the rose, and a bright light lit the sky, and no one could see. When Usagi and Mamoru opened their eyes, they gasped to see the Outer Senshi in new fuku, powered up.
"These are your power-ups," Earth said as the girls looked in amazement at themselves. Four henshin sticks appeared in front of them, and they took them. "You will need these new powers for when the Senshi Kurai come for you."
The Outer Senshi detransformed. Suddenly Earth bent down, gasping in pain. The others started for her side.
"What's wrong?" Setsuna cried out.
"You can't help," Earth gritted out. "Stay back. I must leave..."
She turned and fled into through the trees as the others watched.
She kept running even as the pain persisted. "Not again..." She moaned and collapsed on the ground behind some bushes as she weakly saw the crystal rose break into thousands of pieces. Closing her eyes, she was surrounded by darkness.
"I hope she is all right," Haruka murmured quietly as Earth vanished. Her head was reeling from the information.
"I do too," Usagi said.
Mamoru looked down. I have a sister, he thought.
"She was telling the truth," Luna announced, looking at Artemis, who nodded. "Her story made us remember all of our history... And she was correct."
"Your twins were trained in magic, and they were to become your counterparts, except not physically inclined," Artemis continued. "They had no knowledge of this, since Queen Serenity and ourselves had not told anyone but the other leaders of the planets. The Queen felt that they and their talents should not waste away, so she formed the group, the Magic Senshi."
"But knowing all of this isn't so great," Michiru murmured staring at the lake.
"What do you mean?" Usagi asked, not realizing what the other Senshi had.
"Princess," Michiru said, smiling gently, "when the time comes, I don't think I will be able to kill my twin..."
"The spell has taken its full effect on her, Hecate," Poseidon said. "Gaia should now remember nothing about her friendship with the Sailor Senshi. She should be loyal to only you."
"Very good, Poseidon," Hecate answered. "Now, Cronus and Hades are going to attack?"
"Yes," Cronus said, standing up straight. Her purple eyes flashed and her face was unsmiling. Her short purple hair floated around her face.
Hades nodded. "We will be taking Aurora* and Helios** with us of course."
Hecate looked at the tall green haired woman. "Of course. They are expendable."
"By your leave, Hecate," Cronus murmured.
"You know you do not have to be so formal," Hecate said, smiling. "But you are dismissed."
Hades and Cronus nodded, vanishing.
"The prisoners are behaving?" Sunaru asked casually. She formed a small ball of energy in her hand and threw it up and down.
Hecate scowled, flipping her hair over her shoulder. "Yes. Too well. It's as if they were discussing their fate."
"No matter," Poseidon said, amusement reflected in her green blue eyes. "There is no way they can escape the cell. Magic proof, physical proof, etc. They cannot get by us anyway even if they managed to escape."
Hecate nodded. "Of course. When we have all the Sailor Senshi here, our job will be complete."
"And then what?" Sunaru asked, glancing at Poseidon. They had evidently given the matter a great deal of thought.
The Princess frowned. "I have been thinking about that... Our twins have happy lives on Earth, do they not?"
"Yes," Sunaru said cautiously. She had a guess about Hecate's idea. Poseidon did too.
"What if when we kill them, we take their places as normal girls?"
The two girls were silent, mulling over the idea. Hecate was surprised at her own suggestion. A yearning for a normal life had overtaken her... To forget about all of her past, have a new future...
"I'd like that," Poseidon said wistfully. "Earth is such a pretty planet, though it was more beautiful in the old days."
Sunaru agreed. "Their lives are all comfortable and nice. I'd rather not be isolated for the rest of our lives... Of course, we'd have to make a few arrangements, but it is a rather good idea."
"I'm glad," Hecate said softly, her guard down for once in her life.
Sunaru looked down. They all needed this... To rid themselves of the pain and anger they had felt before... Then they could be happy and free... Beryl had promised them this, but the foolish woman had gotten herself killed.
"Hecate," Poseidon murmured, "we will be free soon..."
"How could Terra betray us?" Jupiter whispered. She rubbed her wrists which had been sore from previous bindings. She was somewhat thankful that they were no longer needed, even if they now had no chance for escape.
Mercury looked around the cell. It was all stone, with two windows. One looked out to the depths of space, where they were, and another was for the enemies to keep an eye on them. However, they were fed regularly and the cell was kept warm. A door led to the clean but small bathroom, where they could do whatever they needed. Jupiter sat against the wall below one of the windows, Mars and Venus sat next to each other against another wall, and Mercury was against another wall.
"She seemed so nice," Venus said, staring out the outside window. The view of Earth was beautiful, and the moon was so pretty.
"Yes, but strange," Mars retorted. She thought for a while. "Yet she reminded me of Mamoru-san somehow... Lonely and quiet."
"Obviously a ploy for sympathy," Mercury remarked, somewhat cynically. "She is part of the Senshi Kurai..."
"I wonder why they want us," Mars said thoughtfully.
"Aphrodite told me that they didn't want to take over Earth," Venus added. "That was strange, but I think she was telling the truth."
"Zeus said that we had met before," Jupiter said, watching her friends. "I don't remember meeting her in the Moon Kingdom. She kept saying that I always had to be better than her. I don't understand that."
"Perhaps we did meet them before," Mercury said, "but I too don't remember meeting them."
"Their resemblance to us is so weird," Venus said, trailing her hand on the floor in front of her. "It's as if they were our clones or something."
"Actually your twins," a voice said.
"What?!" they shrieked, looking around. A girl holding a trident appeared in front of them, a light grey cat on her shoulder. Mercury recognized her instantly.
"Neptune?" Jupiter said.
The girl shook her blue green head. "No. I am Poseidon. This is Cynthia." The cat meowed.
"The enemy!" Mars snapped, standing up. "What do you want?"
"We are here, by order of Princess Hecate to tell you why you are here," the girl answered, motioning with her left hand. Mars was forcefully seated back down. "Rather surprising of her, considering how much she hates your Princess."
"Serenity?" Mercury clarified.
"Of course," Cynthia said.
"You were saying the enemies are our twins?" Venus asked curiously.
"Yes," Poseidon said, noticing the girls' surprised and horrified looks. "Believe us, the feeling is mutual," she added dryly.
"You're lying!" Mars accused.
Poseidon was evidently amused. "Why should I? We have all the cards, and we certainly would not lie at this stage."
"So why this unsisterly treatment?" Jupiter said sarcastically. She controlled the urge to charge Poseidon, knowing that she would defeat her easily.
"Don't tell me you forgot?" Cynthia said angrily, her black moon flashing. "I had thought this talk unnecessary, but I see my mistake."
Poseidon laughed easily at Cynthia, but somewhat bitterly. "Remember, they are reincarnated, have lost many memories, and have no reason to remember us."
"Well?" Mars demanded.
"As you may recall, if your memory does not fail you," Cynthia said, "you are the Princess of your home planet. So were your twins."
"In a judgment by our parents, you Sailor Senshi were considered the true heirs to the throne, while we were not," Poseidon continued, her voice angry but curiously controlled. "You were to be Serenity's guardians on the Moon Kingdom, where you had fun and enjoyment, while we Senshi Kurai had to return humiliated to our planets, with no positive future."
"The girls," Cynthia added, twitching her tail, referring to her girls, "were upset and hurt, but nonetheless were happy for you. We were all foolish, thinking that of course this would not be the end, until Queen Beryl showed us the truth."
"Beryl?" Mercury gasped. "You joined sides with her?"
"That witch?" Jupiter snapped.
"Silence!" Cynthia snapped back sharply. "Beryl opened our eyes to the truth! She saved us from our folly and gave us power to seek revenge against you!"
"Beryl was evil!" Mars said. "That's why we had to defeat her! From taking over Earth!"
Poseidon glared at her, her eyes condemning her. "Beryl was a fool for seeking her revenge too quickly. She sought to rule Earth, which was stupid. We instead want simply to kill you."
"Your own sisters?" Venus said, startled.
"Why not?" Poseidon replied. "You gave no thought to us when you were chosen, happy to be the heirs! Dancing, laughing, having fun while we were to miss you, be sad and unhappy! You forgot us, you twins, your flesh and blood! You don't remember us! As far as we are concerned, we have no sisters!"
"What does Terra have to do with all of this?" Jupiter said.
"Terra?" Poseidon blinked, taken off guard.
"Oh, you mean Gaia," Cynthia said, looking at the brunette. "She is a very loyal spy to us. Perfect. She deceived you, along with Eris, who you know as Miten."
"So Miten was in on this too," Mars said, not surprised. The girl had had all the warning signals of evil.
"Yes," Poseidon said. "They will be rewarded when we eliminate all of you."
"You will never kill us," Mercury said, lifting her chin up. "The rest of our friends won't be easily caught!"
"You could be right," Poseidon said thoughtfully, glancing at the girl amused. "The Outer Senshi are powerful adversaries. Of course, we are equal and have help, which may be our key to winning."
"What will you do after you kill us?" Jupiter asked, her tone sarcastic. "Take over Earth?"
Poseidon laughed. "Of course not. I thought we had already established that fact. We will enjoy our lives on Earth, taking your identities. You won't be missed. No one would believe that some nonexistent twins had taken your places... A perfect revenge, wouldn't you say?"
She disappeared laughing.
"No," Venus whispered. "This can't happen..."
"This won't happen!" Mars said sharply. "They won't let it happen!"
"I wouldn't be too sure," Poseidon's voice echoed through the cell. "At this moment, Cronus and Hades are launching their attacks. Poor Saturn and Pluto won't know what hit them!"
* Aurora has no relation whatsoever to the character in "Serena and Darien." I am obviously using names that deal with the sun, and Aurora was one of them.
** Helios is not the Pegasus from SuperS.
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