"It is destiny."
"No, it is choice. Destiny chose us. Destiny gave us our ancient powers. But it was always up to us to decide what to do with it; it was our choice to continue on the path of a soldier. Now, on the dawn of a new era, Destiny is calling out to us again, and we must make our decision."
When the time comes, will you be ready?
"I cannot decide your fates. Your lives are your own and I want you to be happy, my friends..."
"Ami-chan, Mako-chan, Rei-chan, Minako-chan..."
The simple broom swept the simple steps as it had countless times before. The rhythmic sound of the scratching bristles muted to her ears from years of labor. She only ever heard the calming sounds of the birds chirping, or retreated into the silence of her own mind. So many actions in this place were simple in their task, performed by countless others before her in a ritual dance. She took comfort in their traditions, in a past placid and clearly defined. It was nothing like the life she led outside the wooden gate of her home.
"I'm just saying we could've gone later. I was having the best dream about that new guy that works at the tanning salon!" Like an arrow interrupts the still air, the disrupted voice split the calm, and for a moment, her eyes flashed with a dark tempest of annoyance. She turned, her clothes swishing beneath her, to find three of her friends ascending the steps of the shrine.
"We wanted to beat the afternoon crowds so we won't have to rush tonight and tomorrow, Minako-chan. We want tomorrow to be perfect for her, don't we?" The words were prim and proper, even after years of influence from the now exuberant blonde beside her.
"Yeah, you're right Ami-chan. Hey Rei-chan, are you going to go to the mall in your robes?"
"Of course not Minako-chan, I just thought I'd get some things done before you guys showed up."
"Good, you'd be stealing all the attention with that get up," A collective sigh rolled across the group at the woman with a ribbon in her hair. "I can't wait for tomorrow, I love going to parties. I waited 'til today to get an outfit so I wouldn't outshine Usagi at her own party."
"Oh you're too kind Minako-chan," Rei rolled her eyes.
"Who turned on Minako-chan's ridiculous button today?" Makoto jested.
"Sorry, I'm just really excited. It is a big day, after all."
"Yes, it is," Ami reflected. Their smiling faces became as serious as the stone beneath their feet. For years, they had found this place of stillness unaltered, but it could no longer stay the same. The gentle waves of change had surged upon them, pushing each into taller and stronger forms, filling them with experience and maturity. Now, at the precipice of the future, they felt the pull of the undertow the most.
"It's really coming, isn't it?"
"Yeah…it is, Mako-chan, but we will be ready." Minako's cheerful voice became stronger. "We've faced many obstacles, but together we've beat them."
"Yes, and she has never let us down," Ami pitched in.
"Then we cannot let her down now, she believes in us. We will be ready." They nodded at Rei's words.
"What do you think will happen?"
"I guess we'll see."
What will you decide?
"Haruka-san, Michiru-san, Hotaru-chan, Setsuna-san..."
The waves lapped lazily upon the shore, their movement like a dark blanket kicked around by a fitful dreamer. The slosh of the water was accompanied by a low melody, floating on the waves like a haunted ship. The sand was warm beneath them, their toes dug as far as they would go. The youngest watched the calm waves, while the eldest stared up into the blurry, city stars with her magenta eyes. The last watched her as her partner's fingers moved across the strings, taking in every movement the blue-eyed woman made.
"Why such a melancholy tune, Michiru?" she questioned. Michiru let the melody fade out, and put the violin to rest at her side.
"I don't know. It is the voice of the sea tonight."
"Hmm," Haruka nodded. "It is the heartbeat of the wind, too."
"Something stirs," a small voice whispered beside them, belonging to the girl they raised together. "Yes, the time is drawing near."
"Do you think we will be ready?" Michiru asked.
"Yes," after a moment Haruka answered. "The Senshi have never failed before, especially the princess. It will be challenging I am sure, but I believe in them, and I believe in us."
Michiru chuckled. "How you have changed. Where once only duty stood, belief now reigns."
"Yes, it is because of her, our little princess. She has changed us all, and we will help her as much as we can. We will be ready."
"Yes, we will to do what we must," echoed Michiru
"But where do we fit in?" The small voice broke upon the intimacy of the moment once more, and they turned to the young teenager. Her mauve eyes not leaving the surf as it tumbled continuously. "Chibi-Usa...she never knew who I was before she came back through time. The only one she knew was you, Setsuna-mama." They became quiet, as the smallest voice of them all echoed the concern thumping within their hearts the loudest.
"Maybe we are not needed in the future anymore," Haruka guessed. "It is supposed to be a time of peace. Our destinies have never been the same as theirs."
"But how could we decide not to help, after all that's happened?" Hotaru frowned.
"Setsuna, what happens to us?"
The mysterious warrior sighed, closing her dark orbs. "You will see."
Will you be strong enough to accept?
His feline feet padded silently over the skyline, the city surprisingly silent beneath him. His rounds had been quiet as well, letting him dwell upon what lay ahead. With one final leap, he descended upon his destination, and cuddled close to her black fur in greeting.
"How were your rounds?" she asked, her bright eyes staring at him in the darkness.
"Peaceful… Anything to report?"
"No, the whole world seems to be tranquil tonight. I went to visit Ami, but she was busy with papers to grade. I figured I would leave Usagi and Mamoru alone tonight," she replied, flicking her tail back and worth lazily.
"Mina wishes for some privacy and rest, too," he sighed.
"They deserve some, all of them."
"And what of us, Luna? We have had to deal with hormone-induced soldiers for the past eight years," he snorted.
She laughed, wrapping her black tail around his. "Indeed, none more so than Usagi. But she is, and always will be, worth it."
"Do you think the queen meant for it to be like this?"
"I don't know, Artemis. I know she only meant for the best." They became silent, gazing up at the stars above the hue of the city lights. "It will be a full moon tomorrow."
"Do you think they are ready?"
"All we ever have to do is believe. We must always believe."
Suddenly, they noticed a figure as it leapt into view below them, a dark cape trailing behind him. A man in a full tuxedo and top hat would seem ludicrous anywhere else, but this city was used to seeing the bizarre and abnormal. As he slowly approached the railing, his disguise melted away and he was easily recognized.
"Hey, isn't that Mamoru-san?"
"Yes, let's go see."
His eyes gazed over the skyline, its grandeur amplified how high Tokyo Tower stretched, but it all became an unfocused haze as his thoughts focused upon something more. He had been watching her sleeping, holding her close into the waxing night. The lights from outside, bright enough to illuminate their bed and her sleeping form, silhouetting his whole future and past caught in her elysian dreams. However, his mind began to ponder upon subjects as dark and foreign as the night itself, and the cozy room became a stifling prison.
He didn't deserve her. The others were strong, powerful, worthy of her protection and love. He had never been anything more but a dramatic distraction to the enemy in battle, a quick push to safety. In every dire situation he had failed her, fading out of existence only to be a painful memory for her, sometimes an enemy. How could he possibly be strong enough to stand beside her and face what was to come?
"Mamoru-san?" Surprised, he gazed down at the two felines, concern in their human-like eyes.
"Artemis, Luna, what are you doing here?"
"We should be asking you that question. Why are you not with Usagi-chan?"
The noble prince sighed, dropping his eyes to his clasped hands. The glowing lights of the city were sufficient to cast a shimmer upon the simple band upon his left hand. "Why I am with her, is perhaps the better question."
"I love her, I will always love her and I have tried my best to protect her. But I am not strong enough to be there for her like the others. The only thing I am good at is dying, and I have gladly done it for her in the past. I will continue to, if I must. I just don't know… I don't know if I'm ready."
"Oh, Mamoru-san," Luna sighed and jumped upon the railing. She reached out, gently rubbing her head against his hand in comfort. "You were never meant to guard Usagi, to save her from the evil forces of this world. You were meant to love her, to save her heart from loneliness and to give her words of love and hope when every power she has becomes useless. She needs you, even more than she needs the Senshi."
"Will that be enough to save her from what is going to happen?"
"It always has. Don't you see?"
Will I be everything that I am supposed to be?
"I'm Tsukino Usagi. I'm 14 years old and in eighth grade.
My hobbies are eating, sleeping, and relaxing.
I'm an ordinary cute girl who's kind of a crybaby.
Or at least, I was supposed to be."
She could not sleep tonight. The loss of his intimate touch had awoken her, and the empty bed and whispers of fears would not let sleep come once more. She did not blame him for disappearing, for she could feel it in the air around her, the cool morning breeze bringing memories and visions with it. She could feel it from the others as well, her consciousness and concern spreading farther than herself. Tonight she felt in touch with the whole universe, and it pulled her outside to their small balcony.
She had fought so long. All she ever wanted was to be happy, peaceful, normal. Now she could barely remember what was normal, and even if it existed. She began to rewind the story of her life, analyzing every inch of it she could remember. All her thoughts only led to questions, however. Was she truly destined for this role? Had some greater power been wrong about their choice? She was an ancient princess. But how much of that life could she remember now? How could something so long gone influence what was to come?
She wanted nothing more than peace. For herself, for the world, but mostly for her Senshi. Her fight had never been alone. Without them, she would never have fought so hard, nor found the courage to withstand all the evil around her. They deserved their peace just as much as she did. Fate had stolen it away long ago, but now she would, once more fight for it -- for them, for him.
Something was coming, just hiding beyond the horizon. It would decide all their destinies, and she knew she would have to make a decision- the most important one of her whole existence perhaps. She was supposed to lead the world to a new era, but such a task could not, and should not be done with half a heart. Could she possibly be what she needed to be?
Her thoughts vanished as light poured slowly over the horizon, the sun emerging from its slumber. With it, her dreams of the past faded like the night, and the new light brought change to her blue eyes. She drew her legs to her chest, holding herself close against the new day.
"Happy birthday, Usagi."
I'm Chiba-Tsukino Usagi. I'm now 22 years old, and married to the man of my dreams. My hobbies are eating, meeting friends and fighting for love and justice. I was an ordinary girl who became a soldier, and soon I will be a queen.
Or at least, I am supposed to be.
The Dawn of Serenity
"I made a choice long ago, and I will pay accordingly for the consequences."
Author's Opening Notes
Edited 2/20: Chapters P-11
If you read nothing else about my author's notes, please read this: When you get there, read the brief author's notes at the end of chapter 11.
It is our human nature to envision the future. To plan for things we foresee, and to worry about the things we cannot. To wonder how every decision we make will effect our happiness, and to wonder if our names will echo forever, or if they will fade into space. Some hope to make a better world, while some only hope to live freely in it. The future means something different to everyone, but it will always have a common thread; the future is hope.
This is my vision of the future.
In this story, I will delve into the gossiped world of Crystal Tokyo, but mostly the steps that lead to its creation. I found myself thinking, what happened in those years between the present day and Crystal Tokyo's futuristic appearance? Would it be a time of darkness, or a time of rejuvenation? Many clues and facts will be taken excessively from the Manga, as much as my research has brought me to conclude. Only one incident from the anime will be included in this story, of which you will easily recognize later on in the tale. I've had many questions about Crystal Tokyo -- how it formed and the feelings shared by those surrounded by its lore.
Also, would the events of the Black Moon Arc, AKA Chibi-Usa coming back in time, influence the future of Crystal Tokyo in some way? No one can be sure if things have been mapped out since the beginning of time, this sense of destiny and fate, or if we are just floating out there, designing our own destinies. Another aspect of Crystal Tokyo I've always wondered about was the origin of the Black Moon Clan, and the symbol etched on their foreheads. This is my explanation, my interpretation of what I think could have occurred, but it is obviously not canon and should not be considered so.
The Dawn of Serenity has many subplots and twists, so if you like suspenseful, mysterious pieces this is for you. DoS has recently been revamped because I realized my vision and language are sometimes confusing, and I want this to be as enjoyable as possible for everyone. I don't want to spoil the suspense, but I don't want people to quit halfway through because they can't understand, so hopefully this edit will reach a middle ground of sorts.
This story is divided into three arcs: the Pandora, Hubris, and Agape Arc. They are all of course connected, but different in a way, sort of like how a novel can have "Books" inside it. They have different tones, style, etc. Naming the arcs is something I did in the revamp because some people were confused on the transitions, and that is something clearly needing to be identified. I'll explain why I chose the words in my closing notes, if you're interested, but you might be able to guess as you read.
Some Manga facts that are important to this story you might not know:
-Usagi becomes Neo-Queen Serenity at age 22.
-The Black Moon crisis takes place in 30th century Crystal Tokyo, but no one knows what happens in the years between.
-The Black Moon Clan sisters (Ayakashi sisters) are not purified; they are killed by their respectful Senshi.
In this fan fiction there are also quotes from Alex Glover's translation of the Manga, which are represented by crosses throughout the whole epic and are usually italicized at the beginning of some chapters for those of you on think it's harder to be creative when there are boundaries then when you are free to reign supreme with AU/AR fics, but I was finally ready to tackle such a thing at the beginning of this massive project. After finishing it, I am very proud of how it turned out. It wasn't perfect, (which is why it's getting a second glance over) but I'm happy with what I created. It was a learning experience through the whole process, and I think it is a good representation of myself. The work of Sailor Moon by itself is a commanding and relatable storyline; we might not all fight monsters and save the world, but we have struggles and makes decisions, and all of us have the opportunity to be heroes, even in the smallest way. The characters and plots of Sailor Moon inspired me to write this piece, and I hope I did it a little justice.