Disclaimer for all chapters: Sailor Moon is but my plaything. Ownership belongs to the beloved Naoko Takeuchi. Pay homage to her :-)
Note: This story follows the anime version of events, but manga aspects will probably be included as well. Every flashback of ChibiUsa's during Sailor Moon R will be present. The one shots are chronological.
Snapshots of the Royals
Part 1: "Princess Usagi Small Lady Serenity"
Neo-Queen Serenity screamed, clutching her stomach as shots of agony rocketed up her body. She rolled onto her side, spasming and silently cursing her abdomen from whence the pain originated. The monarch tried to bring her accelerated breathing back to normal with much difficulty. A tiny sob escaped her parched lips.
"Mamo-chan," she moaned, seeking out his assuaging twin orbs of midnight. The ebony-haired man seated in the chair beside her took his petite wife's hand and squeezed it comfortingly, using his other hand to smooth away her blonde, sweaty bangs. King Endymion bent down to gently kiss his wife's forehead.
"You're almost there, Usako. ChibiUsa will be with us soon… Just a little longer, my love…"
A blue clad Senshi entered the room, but wasn't alone. With an aggrieved sigh of frustration, she whirled around and shoved three curious Senshi back out. For the past few hours, aforementioned warriors had been futilely attempting to follow Mercury. Sailors Mars, Venus, and Jupiter were desperate to see their best friend at her time of need. It was hard serving purgatory in a waiting room, especially considering that the only noises where that of Serenity screaming and Mars' crimson shoes clapping marble as she paced a hole into the floor. About thirty minutes into this pestiferous torment, the three had decided to try their luck at sneaking in, hoping to provide consolation or support or... or something! Unfortunately for them, heels were not the best attire to court espionage in, and Mercury caught them in flagrante delicto every time.
The Wisdom Senshi slammed the palace hospital delivery room's door in their face, releasing a loud exhale at their antics. It seemed like every time the young doctor left the room, she had to be extra careful to push away her three daredevil friends as well. Mercury knew how they must feel, but really, Serenity needed relaxation... and those three were the farthest from it! To atone for her guilt, Mercury went out as much as possible to inform them on their Queen's progress.
Various "Aw, c'mon Ami-chan!"s were heard from beyond the obstacle blocking sight of Her Majesty. Sailor Mercury clicked her tongue and moved over to a machine that was monitoring the Neo-Queen's status.
"Is it time yet? Please say it's time to push!" Serenity wailed, pleading overcoming her voice as all well-mannered grace built up over the years flew out the window. Sailor Mercury gave her friend an understanding, sympathetic glance.
"I'm sorry, Usagi-chan. You're not dilated enough," her aqua-headed friend and obstetrician explained. Serenity groaned. She very much wanted this ordeal over with as soon as possible, but fate seemed bound and determined to assail her at every turn. The flaxen heard scuffling outside, wondering what her benighted soldiers were up to this time. She certainly wasn't oblivious to all their breaking-and-entering tactics. Now that her latest contraction had subsided, the urge to see her comrades was becoming unbearable. Serenity hated worrying them like this; it wasn't as though her currently delicate state had worn she herself to the point of fragility!
"Ami-chan... can the girls come in here too? Please?" the former heroine whined, a tried-and-true puppy dog look in place. Now to water those cerulean eyes a little... perfect! Mercury seemed to surrender automatically (always could rely on her, Serenity thought happily). She adhered to Endymion, who nodded his approval. He reasoned Serenity needed distraction to help weather out the pain anyway. Who better than her whimsical, protective, dotty best friends?
"I guess," the Senshi of Wisdom gave in, and Serenity beamed. She winked and watched as Mercury strode over and opened the door. Instantly, a trio of multicolor Senshi toppled into the room, one on top of the other. Each sported varying degrees of sheepishness.
"Er... hi?" Venus grinned from the bottom of the pack, cringing at Jupiter and Mars' combined weight pinning her down. Mercury cocked a sardonic brow, tapping her ultramarine toe against the ground.
"Eavesdropping, were we?"
"No comment," Jupiter responded nonchalantly, refusing to be chagrined. Mercury frowned, but it was clear her admonishments were merely hiding mirth. She succumbed, letting out a giggle and helping the fallen Sailor Guardians up.
"Be gentle, you guys. She's in a lot of pain," the girl whispered, careful to keep her voice low. They nodded. Serenity just pursed her lips, clued in on the fact that the secret wouldn't include her. Meanies, she coined playfully. A trace of humor marred her features, and Endymion smiled down at the Senshi as he stroked his wife's hair. Perhaps the trio in here would be a nice comic relief?
Mars approached the bed gingerly, Venus and Jupiter close behind.
"Rei-chan." Serenity reached out a hand to her best friend, who in turn took the slender appendage gently.
"How do you feel?" Venus inquired solicitously, and Jupiter whacked the effervescent blonde upside the head. Mercury rolled her eyes.
"Idiot!" the brawny brunette scolded.
"Minako-chan, I feel like a youma is pounding my stomach," Serenity chuckled, but her laugh changed midway into another harsh cry. Fresh waves of agony engulfed her body. "Oh, oh, oh, oh!" She arched her back a little off the bed and squeezed Endymion and Mars' hands for dear life. The two held back a wince, but knowing Serenity was in far worse pain seemed to make their discomfort almost trivial.
"Be strong, Usagi-chan!" Jupiter encouraged.
Venus turned to Mercury, discomfiture etching her countenance. "How can we help?"
"Get a wet washcloth and apply it to Usagi-chan's forehead. She's very hot and uncomfortable right now," the Water Senshi replied distractedly, currently measuring their Queen's cervix.
"I'll help!" the viridian warrior beside Venus exclaimed, hurrying to accompany her.
"What can I do?" Mars asked, feeling slightly useless. She wished there was some way to ease that grimace on Usagi... Something of her helplessness must have leaked into her query, because the hand the priestess was clutching tightened around her own.
"Just you being here is enough for me," Serenity whispered, eyes slightly glazed over but intense and heartfelt nonetheless. She bit her lip, grunting as a powerful contraction wound its way through her veins. It felt like her innards were being dragged along for the ride, twisting and bucking... that, or ChibiUsa was wreaking havoc in the birth canal. Surely she could push now? "Ami-chan!"
Mercury nodded to herself, concluding the manual examination. She then rushed to the monitor just as Jupiter and Venus returned, bursting in through the door at Usagi's holler.
"It's time, Usagi-chan!" Mercury moved into position at the end of the bed, heart palpitating in excitement. Venus and Jupiter applied a cool washcloth and ice to their leader's perspired forehead. Serenity was now panting, fingernails digging into the palms of the two on either side of her. Her head, hair matted and disheveled, fell back. Bright blue eyes sought out Venus and Jupiter's in gratitude.
"T-thanks. Feels... good. Cold."
"Remember, breathe nice and slow, Usako. In, out. In, out. That's it," Endymion encouraged, bringing his wife's breathing from hyperventilating back to normal. "Just remember the Lamaze classes."
"Oh, damn them," Serenity grumbled, blowing her bangs from her eyes in a hormonal anger surge. "I'll do what I feel I need to!"
Serenity shrieked as a contraction claimed her, and she lunged forward to push with all her might. The overwhelming agony enveloped her whole trembling body...which, luckily, knew instinctively what to do in this age-old process, because the Queen didn't have the faintest inkling. All she knew was that her gorgeous baby girl was on the way, and that she wanted the infant in her arms after so many months of backache and swollen feet...
The thunderous need to push intensified, obliterating all thought as Her Majesty was swept away on the contraction...
The pregnant royal released, half-choking for oxygen. It seemed like only milliseconds of respite before the command returned.
Serenity complied, but two tears popped out from under her squeezed lids. She inhaled raggedly, visage contorted.
"A little more..." Mercury coaxed, eagerly watching Serenity's vagina stretching... she could almost see a hint of pink...
"I...I can't! I can't! It hurts too much!" the expectant blonde wailed, fear flickering in her crystalline depths. She arched off the bed, unable to think or see properly... the pain was making everything blurry; it was a kaleidoscope Serenity was looking at the hazy world through...
Why the hell had she wanted to give birth *naturally*, again?
"You can do this, Usagi!" Mars pressed in contradiction, interrupting the woman's musings. She splayed her fingers on Serenity's enlarged stomach. "Hang in there! Think about ChibiUsa-chan. As soon as you push, you're one step closer to holding your little pink bundle of joy! You're almost a Mama as we speak!"
Serenity smiled wanly, patting the miko's hand.
"Thank you, Rei-chan," was all she managed in a murmur, scrunching up her sallow complexion for another contraction's arrival. They were near constant now.
"Only a few pushes left, Usagi-chan," Mercury said softly, catching the sovereign's eye. Serenity's face shown with grim determination as she nodded.
"There's the crown!"
"Where? Where? Move over, Rei-chan!"
"Hey, let me see!"
"You already did, Mako-chan! It's my turn!"
"Another push, Usagi-chan!"
"Urgh!" Usagi panted, oblivious to the crowd pressing in on her privates (which, under normal circumstances, might have been *more* than a little embarrassing). Yet, blessedly, the pain accompanied by bearing down had suddenly become tolerable...
"One last time should do it..."
With a moan, Serenity felt the baby slip free of her confines and enter the bright, colorful world outside her mother's womb. The infant opened her mouth, greeting the loud new reality with equally deafening yowling. A brilliant white light filled the room, and everyone shielded their eyes, gasping: Neo-Queen Serenity's crescent moon sigil had begun to pulse, in sync with the blinding illumination coming from a similar mark on the new Princess' forehead. And then, all at once, the insignia on the baby faded and the light show ended. Serenity sighed, falling backwards onto the pillow with pure ecstasy and weariness scribed all across her countenance. She twitched her lips upward, ignoring the amazed chattering of the individuals around her. ChibiUsa was here to stay. After nine months, the moment had come. The baby growing for so long inside her would now grow in her arms, and before her very eyes...
Venus gave a shocked laugh, wiping away tears of joy. There wasn't a dry eye in the room at this great occasion; at this birth of the next Moon Princess and heir. "She really is Usagi-chan's daughter... just listen to those lungs! And... that *power*!"
Mercury came over to the proud mother and father after cutting the umbilical cord and briefly cleaning the newest royal. A pink blanket was tucked carefully in her arms. She placed the child into Serenity's loving maternal hold.
"It's a girl," the pedantic stated with a watery smile, and everyone laughed at her humorous strive for tradition. All had already anticipated the baby's gender from the moment Serenity announced she was pregnant last October... "And most definitely a Serenity!" The blue-hued Senshi turned away to nurse her moist face with a handkerchief.
Serenity chuckled, accepting the bundle gently. "I have no doubt this little one wishes to proclaim that fact to the world," she whispered, memories of ChibiUsa's desperate desire to always prove herself jumping to mind. "But there'll be time enough for that another day."
ChibiUsa was beyond beautiful, and nothing Serenity had ever imagined. Meeting her daughter as a child, when she herself was still considered one... that had been totally different. Usagi had been fond of the spore, yes, but even that affection didn't come close to grazing the surface of what Serenity was currently experiencing. An aura of warm love surrounded the Queen as she stared into her and Endymion's daughter's bright, curious red eyes. She beamed, finding it next to impossible to pull herself away from those gorgeous orbs of incarnadine everyone clearly recognized as ChibiUsa's.
"My baby," Serenity crooned, taking the child's little hand into hers and rubbing it. So fragile... "My little Princess Usagi Small Lady Serenity..."
Endymion reached down to pet his daughter's pink tufts flat. Even he lost the battle against tears...
"How are you, Small Lady, my little munchkin? I'm your Papa, and this is your Mama! But you know us already, don't you, angel? You've known us for nine months. But we've known you for a millenia," the King cooed. He could feel his throat choking up with emotion. He finally had the family of his dreams, complete; the one he'd longed for since his lonely days at the orphanage. Usako and I. And our baby. The thought made Endymion flush with pleasure.
Serenity looked up into his ultramarine eyes, adoration and love shining visibly in her own. "Mamo-chan, we did it. We made a family; together... you and me! Can you believe it, we're parents!"
The two transcended lovers moved in and kissed passionately, squirming bundle of joy still mewling in sensory overload beneath them.
"Oh, and happy birthday, my angel," Endymion wished after they parted. Serenity, with shock, realized he was now talking to her as she glanced at the clock. 12:11am of June the 30th, 2901. How could she have forgotten...? A grin split the circumference of Neo-Queen Serenity's face.
"I think I've just received the best present anyone can ever get," she whispered back, stroking her new baby's soft ruddy cheek.
The Royal Family was complete.
A/N: Please review! Hope you enjoyed this chapter and continue reading!