Author: Initial A PM
My name is Chiba Usagi. I'm 23 years old. And, as I'm quickly learning, even when you know your future… nothing ever goes as planned. -mixed manga and anime canon-Rated: Fiction T - English - Drama - Usagi T./Serena/Bunny/Sailor Moon & Mamoru C./Darien S./Tuxedo Kamen - Chapters: 18 - Words: 57,434 - Reviews: 148 - Favs: 99 - Follows: 103 - Updated: 10-31-12 - Published: 10-08-11 - Status: Complete - id: 7448749
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Disclaimer: I don't own Sailor Moon.
When the light died and the smoke cleared, there were two Veoshim hosts left: the one Sailor Moon had knocked out earlier, and another, who had sheltered himself behind the first's body. Serenity, drained from the effort, lost control of her levitation, and fell; Uranus caught her. The older woman kissed the top of her head affectionately. "Nice work, dumpling."
Serenity smiled up at her. "We all did well," she told her, then looked at the remaining enemies. "He hid," she said, startled. "The others faced us straight on, but he hid. And the other wasn't affected at all."
"So what do we do with them?" Endymion asked, coming up behind them.
"Did he attack anyone?" Neptune asked.
"Usagi," Serenity called softly. "The man on the ground. You attacked him, right? Did he come after you?"
"No," Sailor Moon replied. "I aimed to stun, get him out of the way."
Serenity touched her chin, thinking. "Should we tie them up?" Venus suggested.
"The one's unconscious," Jupiter argued. "Not much point there."
"Usagi. Have you mastered the Healing Escalation?" Serenity asked suddenly.
Sailor Moon blinked. "Of course."
"I want you to try to use that on the Veoshim. Maybe… maybe we can clear their minds enough to negotiate a peace."
"Why can't she use the Silver Moon Crystal Power Kiss?" Saturn asked. "It's more powerful."
Serenity tapped the butt of her Eternal Tiare on the floor. "Interference," she and Pluto chorused.
"Anyway, my scepter is suited to the Healing Escalation," Sailor Moon said, twirling the crystal moon scepter and stepping forward. "Here goes nothing… MOON HEALING! ESCALATION!"
Golden light spread across the two forms. "We could have done this on Rei's father," Mercury murmured to Serenity as they watched.
Mars heard anyway. "No. We couldn't have. He was too far gone, into the madness and anger. I could see it. Even if they communicate in a hive mind, the stronger ones stand out… and he was a forest fire among match flames. Consumed by hate and anger for the loss of his planet… though I can't say for sure that his host wasn't without hate and anger either. My father was ruthless."
"It's fine. There's nothing else to do about it."
Serenity rested a hand on the priestess' shoulder anyway. Mars covered it with her own hand briefly, and then went forward to interrogate the stirring forms of the Veoshim. Uranus followed. The taller woman knelt, while Mars bent over them, glaring. "Wake up."
The second man's eyes were slightly out of focus. Uranus slapped him. He yelped, touching the reddening area. "What was that for?"
"Get you to pay attention."
"You gonna cooperate, or do we have to make you?" Mars demanded.
"I'll cooperate, I'll cooperate," the man held up his hands in surrender.
"Good. We've got questions." Serenity stepped up. "Your kind. You're affected by the power given off by the Silver Crystal, correct?"
The man nodded. Serenity pursed her lips. "But only when you're in close proximity. I used the Crystal several times on a large scale and none of your fellows broke out."
"So, theoretically, if I were to use the Crystal to send you home, everything would be fine."
The second man was silent. The first stared at the floor hard, saying, "We have no one left to lead us. And the others, they are… hard. It would be difficult to convince them to go home."
"Liar," Mars spat. "You're all connected. I can see into your hive mind. It isn't hard to convince them to go home, especially when you have a home and a Sailor Guardian waiting for you. You can leave us in peace, and live out your lives."
Mercury spoke up, "The bodies you inhabit are capable of reproducing still. I'm sure you can figure out a way to make them reproduce, as well as continuing your own lineage, and continue your lives on your own planet."
"Gross, Mercury," Venus commented, slightly green around the mouth.
"It's not pleasant, but it's the truth," she protested. "Who knows, maybe they'll evolve those human shells into something more sustainable for their purposes."
"Or maybe they'll disintegrate, if the radiation is too much, and they'll be back at square one," Sailor Moon muttered under her breath; luckily, only Saturn heard, and she jabbed her elbow into the pink-haired princess' side.
"I can send you home. I told you, you have a home to return to. I made sure of that when I entered the Galaxy Cauldron. I wanted the stars who had burned out to return to their former lives. I don't want to commit genocide here. I want you to live. Don't you think there's been enough bloodshed between our peoples?
"If you let me, I can help you, too," Serenity extended a hand.
The two men looked at each other. They close their eyes briefly, and then reached for her.
With the help of the transport crystals, Sailor Moon's Pink Moon Crystal, and Endymion's Golden Crystal, Serenity was able to send the willing Veoshim home. Before they left, one of the Veoshim occupying a Diet member's body said, "You will be able to find the resisters and destroy them. They won't go easily, but they will not be as strong as the ones you fought here. There will not be many left; we tried to reason with them, but they are set in their ways.
"They are the ones you seek to give justice. Those of us who are leaving… we apologize for what we have done to your people. And we hope you will not think of us too badly."
Once the majority of the Veoshim were gone, the group retreated to the shrine to rest. Mars worked with Luna and Artemis to create maps of where the remaining Veoshim laired. Mercury eventually joined them, to begin work on destroying the remaining cell samples; she wanted to take no chances on Usagi's encounters with the unstable Veoshim in the 30th century happening anyway.
On the second day after the Veoshim left, Serenity went with Uranus and Neptune to the Imperial Palace. The others stood a wary guard behind her as she knelt before the Emperor and his family. "We're working on a plan to finish this," she explained. "It's a matter of finding them first. The problem with the Diet has been resolved, though I'm sure you've already been told about that."
"Yes," the Emperor said lightly. "It was a bit of news that my informants thought was important."
She smiled, and his family chittered their amusement. He continued, "I know it's difficult, and I commend you on a job that not many would be able to do."
"I don't like it," she said. "It's hard to remember that they aren't people anymore, that they're invaders and they've done terrible things. It was just… It was hard, when family members of those I love were involved. Familiar faces doing terrible things… it never gets easier."
"You've experienced this before."
"Yes," she whispered, looking down. She remembered the looks on her friends' faces as they attacked her in the Galaxia Palace. She knew that it had only been their reanimated bodies, but it still hurt to remember. "And I'd hoped to never face something so horrible ever again."
"With luck, you won't. It is up to you now to create a future where such things will never happen again," the Emperor said.
Serenity looked up at him; he and his family looked as if a hundred weights had been lifted from their shoulders. He smiled. "May the graces of the gods smile upon you, Your Imperial Majesty, Empress Serenity. I relieve my throne to you and yours, in the hopes that you will be a far stronger leader than I ever could have hoped to be."
The next day, Mars, Luna, and Artemis returned to the shrine. "We have four central locations," Luna started, when they all had gathered. "We hope that we can get to them before they think to move; it's uncertain if they know to keep on the move just yet, if they're intelligent or simply resistant drones still loyal to Hino's plans."
"Where are we at?" Venus asked.
Mars spread a map before them, and pointed. "Milan, Qatar, Sao Paolo, and Dallas."
"We're pretty sure we took care of those in charge of the bombings here, in Australia and Vietnam," Artemis said.
"We were in Milan… If we'd've known, we could have…" Neptune murmured.
"We had no way of knowing," Uranus told her. "We can't beat ourselves up over something that we couldn't prevent."
But Neptune's heels were dug in. "I should have tried harder. The mirror… I was jet lagged. I couldn't concentrate like I needed to," she said, her voice iron-like. She strode down the brick path and into the trees; Uranus moved to go after her, but Jupiter touched her wrist. "Let her cool off. She's been strong for us this whole time, she needs a few minutes to be selfishly angry with herself. Besides, we were in Sao Paolo not long ago. I'm none too happy with myself either."
Serenity was tracing the outline of a continent with one finger. "I think we should split into two groups. The Crystals should be enough, if what the Veoshim said was true. The ones who are left aren't as strong. We can defeat them normally."
"You aren't staying?" Saturn asked.
"I need to see this through to the end," she replied.
They split into two groups: Serenity led her guardians to the west. Endymion led his future daughter and the Outer guardians east. Serenity's group defeated the mob in Milan easily, using the energy from the Crystal as bait to release the mutations, and the guardians defeating them easily with their new powers. They struggled more in Qatar, but after a final blast of raw power Serenity was able to finish the job the others had started. Endymion's group ran into some trouble initially in Dallas, with most of the Outer soldier's new powers being more suited to defensive tactics than offensive; eventually they managed to work around it with the addition of Sailor Moon's power.
Serenity was disappointed in the lack of real challenge from the so-called resisters. She felt it was hardly worth all the effort to get rid of them if they had no real motivation to stay, other than remaining orders from Hino. "It's like they were zombies," she muttered after they returned to Japan. "Mindless, walking husks set on one thing."
"Sheesh, stop watching so many movies," Venus said. "They were just like the ones we fought here, just with reinforced instincts from the hive."
The others looked at her. She blinked. "What? I'm not allowed to be the serious one sometimes?"
Jupiter laughed and slung an arm around the smaller woman's shoulders. "You've got good points, hon, we're just not used to you making use of them."
Venus snorted. "Well, get used to it. As chief advisor to the queen, I'll be making a lot of them soon."
"Chief advisor?" The others chorused, their tones ranging from outrage to amusement.
"You?" Mars scoffed. "As if."
"Hey! I'm the leader! I get to be chief advisor! Prime Minister, if you will."
"She can have it, as far as I'm concerned. I'd rather be chief medical advisor," Mercury commented with a smile.
"Just because you're chief bodyguard doesn't mean you get to be Prime Minister!" Mars poked Venus' cheek. "Besides, Serenity doesn't even know how she wants to form a government."
"Actually…" Serenity looked up at the sky; it was a clear, crisp winter day, with wispy clouds high, high above. She smiled at the sounds of birds returning. Spring was coming, and with it an entirely new leaf in history. "I did have a few ideas. The first Cabinet role I want to fill is a very important one, and it's one that I think Rei-chan would fit in very well."
The others looked at her expectantly. She grinned. "Secretary of Pain-in-the-Rump."
Mars screeched in outrage, and Serenity took off, hiking her skirts up as she laughed. "USAGI NO BAKA!"
The next task was going to be much harder. Serenity called for a meeting between the leaders of the rebellion and the remaining commanders under sworn loyalty to the now-disbanded government. They met in a neutral location, with Serenity and Endymion presiding. "The time for fighting is over," Serenity began. "The Diet has been dissolved, and the former Emperor has stepped down from the throne in my favor."
"You're a lying, scheming bitch," the army commander snapped.
Endymion stood abruptly, and Serenity had to grab on to his arm to keep him from laying a hand on the man. "You will be silent unless you have something productive to say," Endymion said, his voice tight. "You have no right and no cause to say such things to my wife."
"Endymion, sit down," Serenity ordered. She turned hard blue eyes on the army commander. "With all due respect, commander, I am neither lying nor scheming, and I am definitely not a bitch. If you feel that I am best described in those terms, it's clear that you know nothing about me, and you simply feel that you must resort to the lowest of insults in an attempt to shut me up. A woman, speaking her mind, how dare she. If that is the case, then I must ask you to leave so the adults can continue talking."
She and the army commander held a staring contest until he looked away, his cheeks turning pink. "Now, as we were saying…"
It took several long, hard hours of negotiation before any sort of agreement was drawn up. Serenity would not agree to another constitutional monarchy, when so many former Diet members would be the likely political candidates for a new legislative branch. No one was entirely comfortable with an absolute monarchy in the hands of unknowns with unnerving amounts of power in their hands. In the end, an agreement was made: Serenity would serve as an active monarch, with a limited council of lords and a limited council of commons to advise her and assist with legislation; each council would have a set term of six years in office with no chance at reelection. No political careerists from the dissolved Diet would be allowed to serve on either council, unless hand-selected by Serenity. Candidates for each council would be elected by their constituents, and selected from there by Serenity. Political districts would be redrawn due to changes in population and landscape; a new census would have to be done as well. They left the judiciary system alone to function as it currently did.
"There is the matter of the line of succession…" A naval officer commented.
"Our daughter will be raised with the throne and her country in mind. She will understand how to govern and lead, as will her daughter after her," Endymion said. "A direct line of succession."
"Females leading…" the army commander scoffed under his breath; Serenity heard him anyway and glared at him. "I would prepare yourself for a matriarchy, commander. My bloodline runs strongly with females."
The others glanced at each other; some shrugged in acceptance, others smirked at the thought of similar reactions from others. Still others looked deeply unhappy with this, but in most cases they had demanded too much to consider demanding something as uncontrollable as the sex of an unborn child. "And marriages?" One asked. "It is traditional that a female leaves her country. A queen would not be able to do this, unless you plan on marrying her off to lesser sons."
"Our daughter is too young to consider this. Marriage negotiations will happen as they happen," Endymion said carefully, thinking of how Usagi would scold him about Helios. "It's a new age, and perhaps it is time to consider new practices."
There was a general "harrumph" around the table, and they left it at that. Serenity bit her lip. "There is the matter of the military…"
The military side of the negotiations tensed up. "I don't want to completely dissolve the military. My warriors are more than enough for most terrestrial threats, let alone extraterrestrial threats. But they will have other duties. I do want to say that the military as it is will face some changes. We can negotiate that later, particularly when many of you have been chafing under Occupation-era restrictions for years. I want you to expect change: some good and others bad."
A few heads nodded. Others looked ahead stubbornly, and she knew she had a fight ahead, but it was one she would worry about later. "Will this agreement satisfy everyone?" Serenity asked.
"For now," a rebel leader said, nodding.
"Until we find something that's broken," an army captain said.
"And we'll work to fix that too," Serenity said.
The next morning, she summoned the Crystal to perform an odd task: she spoke to the country in any way that would reach people. She spoke through televisions, through radios, through loudspeakers on the streets. Her voice was heard by millions, and she only hoped that her message would reach everyone:
"Everyone. My name is Serenity. A lot of you have had no idea what has been happening over the past few weeks. And it's a really long story. It involves nuclear bombs, and invaders from another world. It's very strange, I know, but I've been facing strange things for most of my life now. I'm Sailor Moon. And I'm your new queen. My soldiers and I have been working hard to get rid of the threat to our world, and we think we've finally finished the job. There's been a lot of fighting here in Tokyo for weeks now, and because of that the Diet was dissolved and the Emperor stepped down from the throne in favor of me. I hope I can do a good job. And I need your help to do it. To start, I need everyone to stop fighting. You know who you are. Agreements have been reached, and we have a new government beginning soon. We want as many people on board with this as possible, and if you aren't… well. I want you to come and see me. We can talk.
"I want everyone to be happy. Can you do that for me? Can we try to live in peace with each other? I really hope we can. And I really hope you come and talk to me. You'll have questions. And I can help. Let me help.
((Next chapter will be the last, wrapping up any and all loose ends. Thanks!))