Yup. In case you haven't heard, ConstantElation will be up-dating from my account now. So… yeah.

Disclaimer: I don't own Sailor Moon!!! (Grr! And whomever booted me off of fanfiction… I forgive you! It's really depressing to have all of your stories go up in smoke though! Poof! My life's work! Practically. It made me want to cry!!!)

Looks Can Be Deceiving

Prologue

High up in the Celestine Mountains was an heiress, whom was beautiful beyond compare. She wed a commoner, and had been banished there by her King, whom had wanted her all for himself. He killed the woman's only love, leaving her alone, in anguish and hatred. She was about to give up hope, and life, but a goddess appeared to her shortly after the news of her husband's death. She was with child. She still had to be strong, and live through the many troubles of her day. The King Korbalt was a dark, evil man, bent on having his way. He ignored his only son, and most of his concubines, continuing only to dream about the beauty Selene… the one he could never have.

Shortly after Selene found she was with child, the goddess blessed her, and led mountain people, travelers, and commoners to the cave she had donned as her home. It was a large cave, keeping out the constant snow and freezing temperature because of the warmth of the earth. A small stream coursed through the cave, approximately ten miles from the entrance if you took the correct turn. It housed these newcomers, and they offered to stay with their heiress, whom had been banished.

The people loved Selene's kindness and her gentle ways. When she bore the child, she delivered a healthy baby girl that seemed to have an aura of majesty and mystery about her. She was a beautiful baby, and slightly pudgy, but all could tell she would grow out of that stage soon enough. They knew she would be a real beauty… like her mother, Selene.

She was named, Serenity.

She was the soul thing that brought their people joy and happiness. She was their sun, in the damp, cold, hateful world. She was the life that thrived through all of them. When Serenity was five years of age, the goddess returned, a look of sadness and pity on her face.

"What? What is it?" Selene had asked, not prepared for any more bad news or bloodshed. She had lost her true love, she would not lose her beloved daughter.

"I am afraid that soon rumor will spread of your daughter," the goddess said in the slightly whispery voice of hers that echoed throughout the cavern walls. "When she is older, men will come to see her, wanting to catch a glimpse of her for themselves, and possibly bring her home as a bride, to show others that they have done what others could not. To show others that they have captured the daughter of Selene, the sole woman the King had deemed for himself, yet had not succeeded in gaining."

"No!!" Selene had cried out, clutching the young girl to her chest. "No one will have her! She is all I have left! If she marries… it will be for love!"

The goddess shook her head. "I am sorry. I have already seen the future. When she marries, it will be a royal command."

"NO!!!" Selene shouted, enraged and more defiant, her heart slowly shattering into bits of nothing. "You're killing me with worry! Don't you see that?" She asked, eyes filled with such sadness and longing for a normal life that the goddess felt pity for them. "Is there nothing you can do?"

"I could give you protectors for her, if that is your wish," The goddess commented, having already thought about it long and hard. "They will be touched by the gods and goddesses, like your daughter and yourself."

"Touched by the gods and goddesses--?"

"Yes. Your gift, the presence of magic running through your veins. There are not many of you left. That is why I must interfere with fate, and help it along a little."

Selene slowly gained her confidence back, knowing that what the unearthly woman—goddess—spoke of was true. "Yes, protectors will help, but make sure that they are all women, and that they will not be affected by my daughter's looks like men might be. There is still the problem of rumors though…"

The goddess smiled. "The protectors will grow at the same rate as your daughter, and will be of the same age. They will befriend her, and she them. They will trust each other, for I know that that is what you are concerned about… and I have seen it. You needn't worry."

"The rumors? What of them?" Selene asked desperately.

The goddess shrugged, a spark of life and mischief in her eye. "Do not fret. I shall start the rumors… and they shall be far from true. Your daughter will find her true love, as you wish, but it will not be easy. There will be many trials, and she does not even realize it yet. I am afraid that you will not be able to be there for her long enough to see who the chosen man is though."

"As long as she is protected, and has friends, and someone to look after her when I am gone. Will you promise me that, goddess?"

The goddess smiled. "Yes. I shall promise you that… and much, much more."

Chapter One

Rumors Haunt the Soul

Prince Endymion made his was through the courtyard, his face glum. Yesterday was still too intermeshed in his brain when he had hoped to forget all about it. He didn't want to wed, and he didn't want his counselors pestering him about his birthright and promise to the crown. He didn't want advisors reminding him of duty and the promise to his deceased father whom had been dead for all of three months.

"Oh En-dy!" a familiar voice sang seductively, causing him to wince. Right when he thought he had finally gotten rid of her.

He groaned, picking up his pace as a dark scowl flit across his brow.

"Endymion!"

He turned a corner, but not quickly enough. She had caught sight of him, and he of her. His jaw clenched and his hands fisted at the sight of her ruby red hair. He had to admit that she was gorgeous, and had a body that called to his as the dehydrated desert-people called for water, but she was really starting to annoy him! Sure she was pretty good in bed, but she just didn't satisfy him anymore. She didn't satisfy the deep hunger and lust he had felt for her the first time he had laid eyes on her. He wasn't physically attracted to her anymore, and she couldn't get that through the thick head of hers!

"Endymion," she growled huskily in his ear, grabbing his hand and tugging him to her.

He stiffened. He hadn't known that she would be able to catch up to him so quickly. If he had… he would have gotten his horse and galloped long and hard, going anywhere just to get away from her!

"Beryl," he commented tersely.

She gave a low laugh. A laugh that didn't tighten his groins at the sound of it any longer. Her affect had worn off long ago. She was the only one who wouldn't admit it though.

"What do you want?" Prince Endymion asked snidely, not even wanting to be patient around her.

She smirked at his face as she cut him off, sidestepping him and turning to be face to face. "I just found your father, the King's, will," she commented in a carefree voice, all the while grinning like a Cheshire cat.

He paled, then went red with rage. "What?!?" He clenched his fists, trying to re-gain his calm, cool way to handle things. He inhaled a long, deep breath, and then exhaled. "Why should I care what is in his stupid 'will?' I already know that everything belongs to me. I am the only heir to the throne, so I have nothing to worry about." He pushed her aside. "Now if you'll excuse me…"

"Nothing… Endy?" She asked, the edges of her wide, thin lips quirking slightly.

He stopped mid-stride, pivoted, and then glared.

"What's that supposed to mean?" He snarled, hating her more and more every moment.

She smirked once again. "You do not know what your father wrote in his will concerning your… betrothed…"

All the color literally drained from his face. "What?!?" He roared, lurching for the thin piece of paper with a red wax seal on it, a flower emblem indented to the envelope to signify his Kingdom.

"No, no, no, you naughty little boy," Beryl teased… or attempted to.

She really irked him. "I am not betrothed," he growled in his own defense, hoping—praying—that it wasn't true.

"Do you remember that agreement you made with your father, signing the contract about you being wed by the age of your eighteenth birthday… or else he got to choose?"

He did not like the evil glint he found in her taunting eyes, nor the smug expression playing about her lips. He kept pulling the parchment out of his reach each time he attempted to make a grab for it. Endymion gave up, his back ramrod straight as he clenched his arms tightly to his sides.

"No." He sighed, exasperated. "Tell me what you're getting at Beryl, I tire of your games."

She sniffed, then chose to ignore the comment. "You were five."

"Then of course I don't remember signing any damned contract! Just tell me, alright? I will be crowned King in a few day's time, so you better tell me or I will order you off of my property with a price on your head for the delay!" Not that I won't do it anyway… He thought grimly. He got his way, always had his way, and was going to make certain that it stayed that way! He wasn't getting married to any snot-nosed girl that thought she was good enough to be a Princess. Or a Queen for that matter. Unless she was drop-dead gorgeous… she large curved hips and full breasts that would keep his attention, luscious full lips the color of a rose… and a voice that made him harden upon hearing it. He gulped. Yep… that would suit him just fine.

"It said that if you did not choose your own wife by the time you reached your eighteenth birthday, the royal King, Korbalt Verdur VIII, would get to chose your Queen for you."

Endymion blanched.

"Would you like to know who it is?" She asked huskily, running a hand up and down his firm chest.

"No…" he said, and meant it.

"Too bad. It's me."

"What?!? That's impossible! He only wrote that because you are the only female he knows, and he thinks you might actually be able to keep my attention!"

"And I'm doing a fabulous job…" she said in a seductive whisper, leaning to let her lips brush against his ear.

He bristled in anger, but quenched it quickly, a smirk of his own falling into place. "Beryl…" He murmured, placing a hand at the small of her back and pressing her against him. She gasped, then smirked also. He hadn't shown much interest in her lately. It was a nice change of pace. He brought his lips firmly against hers in a burning kiss, probing her lips with his tongue immediately. She opened, letting him in and sighed into the kiss as he became more harsh and demanding to the point where it hurt. She moaned, trying to kiss him with as much fervor as he her. He tilted her head up, allowing himself more access as he battled for the captivity and surrender of her mouth.

She groaned.

He didn't.

It was then that he quickly grabbed the parchment, ripped it from her grip, and pushed her away, thoroughly disgusted. He turned his back to her, quickly scanning the so-called will, and then re-read it once again at a slower pace when he was sure she would try to steal it back.

"It says here that Beryl Volder of Powlswolth is to chose my bride, not be my bride," he stated, turning to face her once again, eyes smoldering as if daring her to mess with him.

"And I chose me," she stated indignantly, her temper flaring as well. She shrugged carelessly. "Sorry Prince, but you aren't getting your way with this. I will be Queen, and you are to be my King." She crossed her arms over her chest defiantly, lifting her chin in the air as she glared in his direction.

"No," he said firmly, handing back to her.

"You have no say in the matter!" She screeched, bristling with anger.

"That's where you're wrong. It says you must chose someone, it doesn't matter of their blood-lines as long as it is a female and near the correct age, and that 'if thou so happens to chose thou self, thou must also chose another for thy choice of preference.'" He grinned triumphantly. "This means that I can choose between you… or the other girl you choose to pick. Believe me, no matter who you choose, I will prefer her over you any day."

Beryl pursed her lips, silently glaring at his darkly handsome form. She had assumed he would choose her willingly. She hadn't known she had lost his attention so vastly. At least she had lasted longer than the others. Much longer.

That's just because I'm more beautiful and am better in bed, she told herself silently, trying to boost her own self-esteem. A slow, twisted grin stretched across her lips. She would just have to choose someone hideously ugly; who wouldn't keep him interested in bed, and was completely dull and stupid. That shouldn't be too hard. Any girl… any female of the Kingdom would answer this call. They would have to, it was a royal order, the last dying request of the late King.

It dawned on her as the sweetest, most wonderful epiphany of her time. It was too good to be true. He would pant, sweat, have nightmares about the 'female' she would chose. He would sooner fall to his death, than marry the ugliest, most horrid creature on the planet! He would be hers for sure, and everything would fall into plans from there. He would be hers… she would have it no other way.

"Do you remember the rumors that have been flying about… at Mount Celestine? They have been traveling about the place for almost fifteen years now…" she said it pleasantly… and nothing was 'pleasant' in Beryl's opinion. Endymion became instantly suspicious. "It is said the Selene was cursed when she chose to wed a man other than your father… the King. It carried that curse to her one and only child before the father died. It is said that a demon-child was born in the mountains, killing all that came to try to help them and bring them food and blankets. It is said that they eat only snow… and the blood from wild animals and then they roll around in the animal's fat and cartilage, leaving it with them until it rots so bad that you can never get the stink from their skin. Then… ten years ago… after both mother and daughter had been completely crazy for all those years, the fifteen year old girl killed her mother… the one and only being who had ever… would ever… love the raving beast."

During the story Endymion had gone deathly still, scarcely breathing. He knew the rumors well… and there were a lot worse than the one she dared to tell.

"Then, four girls of the exact same age went up the mountain side, alone, together. They were friends, and were trying to prove to the world that there was not Snow-girl, now Blood-beast, and no Demon-spawn. They were wrong… deathly wrong. When they got near the top of the mountain they found a cave that stretched out as big as an entire Kingdom down below. They entered there, and found a stream to drink from. They would have died if they didn't get water into their bodies. It was then that a bloody, grimy, ugly looking creature—it didn't even resemble a girl—leapt through the air and attacked them, furious that someone entered her home without warning, and for using up her only water supply.  She realized that they were of her age, and she had been so lonely after the death of her mother that she needed company. So she bewitched them, making them think they had been best friends since the beginning of time, and that she would never harm them. They have stayed with her, in a trance, under that spell, up until this time, and it still remains. They still do not know that they should be afraid of her. They do not know that she could kill any one of them—all of them!—in only a single moment, with one single stray thought. She is a beast, with a curse on her and anyone that sees or intermingles with her."

"They are mere rumors. No one lives in the mountain, and there are no caves."

Beryl raised a single brow. "Oh? And have you been there? Have you seen it for yourself? Rumors start somewhere, do they not? They all have a bit of truth behind them."

"It's folly," Endymion snapped, but his bones had gone cold and his hands were now clammy. Shivers raked through his body. She wouldn't choose her, the Demon-spawn… would she?

"Is it? Did you not once send up your two men and close companions there to see if the rumors held true? Andrew and Ann, am I correct? Did they ever return?" Beryl knew she had once when his shoulders slumped in defeat.

"I sent them… but they wanted to go. They wanted to prove to everyone that there was nothing to be afraid of. I think Ann just went for the adventure, and to pronounce to everyone how brave she was. She wanted my praise… and it was something I would never give her. I liked her… but it was never more than that."

"And they didn't return, did they?" Beryl asked, fake-pouting, grinning triumphantly to herself on the inside.

He turned away from her, his heart clenching painfully. "No. They didn't."

"I bet she killed them both, along with those psycho witches she now has! You can always ask her when I ask for her to come and visit… or do you wish to make things easier for all of us and agree to marry me instead?"

Now he glared at her with nothing but pure hatred in his eyes. "I will still never marry you, as I have proclaimed earlier. If this 'demon-child' doesn't exist, then you will have to pick another female for me. I will not yield to the likes of you!" He spat at her, on the cobblestone floor, just before her feet to show her what he thought of her.

She was positively livid with rage, seething. "Oh she will come, and when she does… you will see how hideously ugly she is and welcome me to your warm embrace, never wanting to let go."

"Don't count on it," he spat.

He turned on his heel and left her standing there, not even glancing back at her. He had to admit that he was a little frightened… with all the rumors flying about… but surely she wasn't a real being, and if she was… hopefully not human! He wouldn't have to worry… not for long anyway. Beryl would find out that there was no such thing as the She-demon, and he would be free of her soon enough.

Still, an odd feeling kept nagging at the back of his mind. Curiosity, hatred, wonder, and many more emotions swamped his mind. He would have to go to his generals for support. They could reassure him if no one else could. If not… maybe they would know a few more… interesting tales to tell him to ready himself for her arrival.

He shuddered, praying to every being that could possibly exist that she wasn't a true human… or even a weird version of one that wasn't completely sane.

Now what was her name again? He had heard it so many times… he had to have remembered it from all those haunting stories. Ah yes… now he remembered.

Serenity.

That was it.

She didn't sound like some dreadful creature that was about to leave the entire land in shambles. Then again… looks can be deceiving.

So…. How do you like it? You better review if you read this, okay?!? And thank you! I'm glad you took the time to read my fic! Bye ya'll! wink