Chloe: Welcome back to another dramatic round of the "Memos…" Now this was supposed to be part of the previous chapter, but the author wanted to upload the last one pronto after year's worth of a hiatus. With this chapter concludes the events of the past that indeed connect to the present. Warning: This chapter and the next will also be as violent as in chapter 28. Here you go!
The Ketchum Eclipse
"I won't die…as long as you still live." -Liquid Snake, Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes
"I am…reborn." -Paxton Fettel, F.E.A.R. 2: Reborn
"Destiny hasn't been very good, has she?" -Jeri Katou, Janyu's Ark
"Just when I thought I was out, they pull me BACK in!" -Michael Corleone, The Godfather Part III
Like a stack of weights, the Midniteryder fell to the ground more quickly than when he rose up in the sky. He landed on the ground with a loud thud, feet first not even feeling any sort of pain or reaction of the impact in his body due to the ethereal nature of his endurance and strength. Not even noticing those around him, the young man in armor looked down at the palms of his hands in complete awe that he had finally came back.
Meanwhile, the Sailor Scouts along with Tuxedo Mask were shocked at what had just occurred while Zane, his Pokémon, and Serenity remained completely speechless. What had been a confrontation of what appeared to be knock-offs of their old enemies took an odd turn as some large blue crystal just popped up out of nowhere. And then it just shot up in the sky and then shattered completely all of a sudden. They were very surprised of what...or rather who was in it most importantly.
"That guy…" Sailor Venus trailed.
Sailor Mars nodded at her as if she knew what she was saying. "Yeah. It's the Midniteryder!"
Confusion flooded the minds of the Sailor Scouts at this unexpected turn of events. First the unnatural fog, then the altered coloration of the valley/forest area, next the shadowy foes, and now the appearance of the so-called, "Dark Warlord of all Pokémon Trainers."
Sailor Moon looked over at the Midniteryder, completely awestruck at his sudden appearance since their last encounter. She couldn't help but remember the dream she had a couple of days ago of him showing up all of a sudden and obliterating all of the monsters she fought in the past. Serena was convinced that somehow someway, she knew this stranger.
'Who are you really?' She wondered in her mind. 'How come I feel like I know you?'
One of the shadow creatures that resembled Mistress 9 decided enough was enough. She lunged forward toward her new foe in attempt to maul him from behind while his attention was on himself. It happened so quickly that the Sailor Scouts didn't have enough time to react. Unfortunately for the banshee, her face met the right backhand of the Midniteryder's, knocking her to the ground. For a few more seconds he paid more attention to himself more than he did with the assailant he struck down, making it seem like his strike was unintentional.
The Dark Warlord then peered over to the unfortunate victim that he struck after spending a minute at looking at his hands and arms. It didn't really take long for him to notice that a: whoever he struck wasn't human and b: its intention was to obviously kill him. The Midniteryder noticed that the apparition he attacked was manipulating her massive long hair, possibly using it like some kind of weapon. Taking no chances, he jumped up in the air. Using his weight to his advantage, he landed feet first on the Mistress 9 look-alike, smashing her torso as the banshee let out a blood-curdling scream. Silence broke out as the evil apparition melted into a black puddle as soon as the Midniteryder got off of it, what's left of its features sharing the same fate as the other apparition.
Recognizing the newcomer as a threat, the Death Phantom apparition launched a dark, tentacle-like projectile from its crystal ball. The attacks pierced through some tall rocks as it slithered its way towards its intended target. The Midniteryder saw this though and managed to evade the attack in time. He then shot what Zane noticed to be a stronger variation of Shadow Ball at his enemy, successfully plowed into it and having the evil being lose its grip on its crystal ball as it was launched into the air.
Seeing this as an opportunity to get rid of one less enemy, Sailor Mars seized the initiative as she brought out an ethereal bow. "MARS FLAME SNIPER!" She shouted, launching her arrow at the crystal, making an audible shatter sound as her attack immediately made contact with the ball.
Following Sailor Mars' example, Sailor Uranus went over to the grounded Death Phantom apparition. She made a quick glance over to the Midniteryder; despite his surprise appearance and what he just did to their enemies, she was one not to let her guard down in trusting this armored individual so easy. Her attention then came more importantly over to the downed apparition. She quickly got out her trusty short sword and started slashing at the fiend as soon as she came over to where it was on the ground. Various howls of agony were heard from the apparition as its assailant continued her onslaught. She then leapt back and prepared for one final blow…
"Space Sword Blaster!" Sailor Uranus shouted, the blade of her sword glowing as she sent an energy wave at her opponent.
An inhuman scream followed as the faux Death Phantom's form disperse into yet another black puddle.
"Another one bites the dust." Sailor Uranus smirked, satisfied with offing another evil being.
Meanwhile, Sailor Moon was engaging with the last apparition that resembled Nehellenia. The confrontation grew fierce as her enemy threw spider-like threads and even sending her own hair at her. She evaded one attack after another while in the sky. Deciding that now would be the good time to fight back, Sailor Moon formed what appeared to be a glowing discus in her hand. She pointed it at her opponent while in the air.
"MOON…TIARA…MAGIC!" The winged heroine shouted, launching the projectile at the apparition. (Despite being in her Eternal form and lacking her tiara, she's still capable of using this attack like an energy attack.)
The evil fiend that closely resembled one of Sailor Moon's greatest enemies dodged the attack, hissing angrily as it cupped her hands together to fire an attack of her own. Little did it knew, the glowing discus that Eternal Sailor Moon launched changed directions and went after its intended target. Sailor Moon's attack struck its target in the back of its head, making the fiend shriek in pain as it crashed down on the pavement. As it got back up, the faux Queen Nehellenia looked back up and hissed loudly at the levitating Sailor Moon. However, what the apparition didn't realize was that the Midniteryder was directly behind it, flexing his right hand menacingly. It sensed too late of who was behind it as the Dark Warlord grasped the apparition's neck, its hands grabbing the wrist of its assailant in an unsuccessful attempt to pry his hand off.
Inside the masked helmet, which seemed to be equipped with high-tech viewing, David peered at his enemy with intense dark eyes. Something about this banshee jogged a memory in the trainer's head. His eyes narrowed dangerously as he realized who it was…
Juuban District, 5 years ago…
David was heading over to the Cherry Hill Temple. He was increasingly worried and disturbed by what was going on today: in the news, reporters explained that for some strange reason, many schoolgirls were absent from school today especially high school girls. He was also informed by Serena herself that strange, female, mirror-crystal monsters were appearing all of a sudden and was told by her to not be outdoors much and was even ordered by her to not look in any mirrors. Overall, the young boy could not just stand by helplessly while all this chaos is happening. He felt like he needed to get involved now for the sake of his cousin and for her best friends that he grew very fond of.
Grabbing whatever he could into a backpack as well as grabbing the two Poké balls of his two faithful Pokémon, David set foot and headed over to the temple, knowing that that's the place the Sailor Scouts usually go to have meetings. He then heard a young woman's voice that certainly belong to one of the Outer Sailor Scouts so he peered around the corner of one of the buildings closest to the source of the voice.
"The future of Small Lady is now changing drastically." The tan-skinned woman David identified as Trista explained to the rest of the scouts.
"What does it mean?" Lita asked from inside the building.
"If the prince does not escape Nehellenia…" Trista trailed. She stepped forward near Serena, who was overwhelmed by the current situation of her arch-enemy. "…the prince and princess will not marry in the future world. Small Lady will not be born…"
Serena looked up in astonishment, her eyes buckling. The thought of her future daughter ceasing to exist just terrify her. It especially goes double for losing Darien.
Over around the corner, David's eyes widened. Despite his differences with the both of them, he was quite worried about Darien and Rini. He knew that Serena loved them both and wouldn't dare even think of a life without her boyfriend and her future daughter. A lot of the reasons why he disliked them sometimes were because of the way they had treated Serena in the past. Sure she put on that act of hers that hid her real personality most of the time, but David looked up to Serena very highly. He really hated the times he had to listen to Darien seemingly hurt Serena's feelings before they became a couple and even hated more the times Darien broke his cousin's heart despite being told by Serena of the real reason why after their reconciliation. At times, he couldn't really see how it was possible that Rini was her future daughter because of the way she treated Serena. Their negligence of his beloved cousin and sensei caused him to look at them with disdain. However, it is because he loved Serena so much that David reluctantly tolerated the both of them for Serena's sake.
The young boy listened on about how rules of time and space are having an effect on the young girl that was bed-ridden. Suddenly, Serena stood up and started running.
"Wait!" The young woman known as Amara, called out to Serena. "It's a trap!"
The other young woman in turquoise hair, Michelle nodded in agreement. "What Nehellenia is aiming for is you!" She said, deeply concern for their leader.
"We'll get back the prince for sure." Trista promised, afraid of what Serena was going to do. "So, you and Small Lady should stay here."
"No!" Serena replied, rather sternly. Tears started to slowly pour down from her weary eyes. "I don't want to have a future without Darien…where Rini would disappear…I can't wait!"
One tear fell from Serena's cheek and touched her brooch. The brooch that was the source of her transformation started glowing intensely.
Serena paid no notice, however. "I have to go and save Darien!"
A bright pink light covered Serena with that last sentence. Power surging all around her as she was transforming.
David looked on in awe. When the transformation was completed what he saw was a whole new Sailor Moon. Not only her entire outfit was different, she also had wings on her back.
"Beautiful…" David muttered. He gazed for a few seconds before he shook his head and turn his attention to the situation at hand. He noticed that Raye had a grave concern on her face as she got up on her feet. He noticed that Sailor Moon was doing something. He needed to act fast or he'll never be able to help his cherished cousin.
"Darien…" Eternal Sailor Moon uttered to herself as she looked up at the sky. Then, with a sweep of her wings, she started to take flight.
"Serena! Stop!" Raye cried as she stepped out of her room and ran after her best friend. She got ready to jump in an attempt to catch her.
What the temple maiden along with friends didn't realize was that a certain someone had other plans.
"WAIT! Serena!" David shouted as he came out of the corner.
The other Sailor Scouts looked on in shock when the young Pokémon Trainer-to-be sprinted frantically while Raye leaped after Sailor Moon and tried to catch her, not really noticing the dark-haired boy. Unfortunately, Sailor Moon levitated high enough that Raye missed and landed hard on the ground. However, David had managed to jump high enough so that he was able to cling onto Sailor Moon's feet. He hung on for dear life, knowing that there was no turning back.
As Eternal Sailor Moon flew higher into the air with David holding onto her boots, the rest of the young women looked on, stunned at what just happened while Raye remained on the ground. Lita got up out of Raye's room as she went over to where Raye was and looked up straight in the sky. While the Outers didn't know who that boy was, the Inners, especially Lita knew damn well who it was.
"DAVID! NO!" Lita screamed. "GET DOWN HERE, NOW! YOU DON'T KNOW WHAT YOU ARE GETTING YOURSELF INTO!"
The tall girl's words fell upon deaf ears as both Sailor Moon and her cousin disappeared into the unknown…into certain danger.
Back with the Ketchum-Tsukino duo…
"Where am I?" Serena groaned.
Opening her eyes, Serena found herself lying on her stomach. She also realized three things: first, she noticed from just looking on what appeared to be the ground she was in some strange void that looked like black clouds with a red trim. Secondly, judging by the long sleeves of the high school uniform she was wearing, Serena was no longer Sailor Moon for the moment. Thirdly, she also realized from another groaning that she picked up a certain hitchhiker before she vanished from the Cherry Hill Temple.
Serena looked over to where the source of the groaning came from and gasped in horror at who she saw. Picking himself up was none other than her young cousin.
"David!" Serena shouted as she marched over to the boy's spot.
The boy in question shook out the cobwebs in his body and looked over to the older girl approaching him. "Serena!" David yelled, relieved that she was alright.
Serena glared at her apprentice, her eyes filled with anger and worry. She shook the boy up to express her frustration. "I told you to stay at home! Why did you follow me here? Don't you realize what kind of danger you put yourself in by following me?"
David stared straight back at Serena's emotional eyes with a stern look. "Serena, I couldn't help it! It didn't feel right for me to stay home, not while all this is happening. I came to help you!"
Serena was about to reprimand him on his foolish decision when she heard a not-so-pleasant voice. "Welcome, White Moon Princess!"
A large mirror appeared out of nowhere in front of the two. A second later, a large figure emerged out of the mirror. It became apparent that Serena now stood face-to-face again with her arch-enemy, Queen Nehellenia.
"What a stupid girl." Nehellenia remarked. "…to jump in, knowing it's a trap."
Nehellenia continued to look at her adversary with a smug look. "Do you miss that man so much?" She asked.
Serena glared at the evil queen, using one arm to put in front of David to protect him. "Nehellenia!" She gritted.
The being in question pointed at the blonde-haired girl. "I remember your figure…sacrificing yourself to save your beloved!" She exclaimed, remembering how in their last encounter, Sailor Moon went through great lengths to save Sailor Mini Moon. She then looked over and noticed a boy that Serena had her arm in front of. She smirked sinisterly. "Who's that? Another beloved of yours I assume? How interesting. Anyways, for you a miracle will not happen again!"
"Return Darien to me!" Serena demanded, placing her arm closer to David afraid of what this long-haired queen would do to him. Unbeknownst to her, David was quietly getting stuff out of his backpack
The towering tyrant chuckled sinisterly. "Good eyes…" She commented, noticing the look of contempt on Serena's eyes. "Those eyes filled with hate and sorrow looks comfortable to me…"
Fed up of hearing this pretentious witch's babble on his cousin's misery, David got under Serena's arm and quickly ran up to the dark fiend, much to Serena's shock. He held out a kitchen lighter in one hand and a can of aerosol spray in the other.
"Let's see if you feel 'comfortable' WITH THIS!" David shouted.
The dark-haired boy ignited the fire from the lighter as he aimed up at Queen Nehellenia and sprayed the aerosol in front of it, releasing a stream of fire at her. The large figure merely stood still however, as the flames merely passed her.
David gasped in utter disbelief while Serena looked on behind, speechless at what her cousin just tried to do. The both of them narrowed their eyes at the amused queen.
"My, my..." Nehellenia giggled, enjoying this feeble show of bravado. "This human child that you care greatly about sure has such intensity. And loyal too…let's see if he can survive on his own with that loyalty while I bask in your suffering, Moon Princess…"
With a wave of her hand, she made a mirror materialize on the ground David was standing on. Though David was unaware of it, Serena sure was.
"DAVID, LOOK OUT BELOW YOU!" She screamed fearfully as she ran over to her cousin.
Her warning came too late as the Pokémon Trainer-to be felt a strong suction from the ground. Though he saw the mirror, he was too late as his body was being sucked.
"AH!" David screamed in terror. "SERENA!" He called out as he tried to reach out to his cousin.
However, the boy was completely sucked into the mirror and vanished. All Serena could touch was just the ground where her cousin once stood.
"Heh heh heh…" Nehellenia chuckled. "Yet another beloved I have taken from you. Don't worry, I sent him farther away from where you are. Good luck reaching me…"
And with those words, the evil queen vanished…
"Wait!" Serena shouted, despair increasing in her soul. First her loving boyfriend got possessed and kidnapped by this sadistic witch, then her future daughter started to fade from existence as a result of it, and now her loving disciple and cousin is separated from her.
All of a sudden, Serena found herself alone in a snowy wasteland. Despite the challenges and the high stakes of the people she loved on the line, she gathered enough courage for herself to press forward.
Meanwhile, David found himself in a different area of the snowy wasteland. He noticed that wherever he was, he was far, far away from Serena. The fact that he got separated from the older girl and the fact that he has no idea where to go scared him deeply. What scared him the most was that now he was unable to help Serena, especially since he couldn't even help himself. 'No!' He said in his head. 'I can't give up like this. A true Pokémon Trainer never gives up. I refused to let this ugly witch get the best of me while she rips Serena apart. She will pay for this! Hang on, Serena I'm coming!' With compassion in his heart, David trekked on in a certain direction. Maybe it was a sixth sense or that there's some superhuman ability in him; either way when David concentrated in his mind, he could feel a fading, yet warm energy at a certain point. This energy was the same feeling the boy felt when Serena transformed into Eternal Sailor Moon. Using this as a trail, David continued on to that point.
And so David walked on forward, using the fading energy as a point to reach Serena. As he kept moving at a brisk pace, he noticed that the wasteland turned into a pleasant scenery with flowers growing from the ground. Despite the sudden change of the land, David had no time to take in the scenery; he was way more worried about Serena than looking at a bunch of flowers. He also noticed far away a bunch of small ruins, which is parallel to the dim point he was following. Serena must've been over there!
Passing through ruins while paying no attention, David noticed again that his surroundings changed yet again as the illusions shattered. The boy looked ahead and saw over a bleak horizon, a dark castle. Attached to that castle was a long staircase that was covered in a thick bramble of thorns. He also noticed not too far in the bramble were small pieces of blue and white cloth and even a small trinket of blood.
Realization dawned in as the boy knew what these were. "Serena must've gone through these. David said. Sadness and anger course through his body as he could feel Serena's pain. "Hang on, Serena…" David said with fire in his eyes. "I'll save you. I'll make that ugly witch pay!"
Deciding that now was the time, the boy got out his two Poké balls and got ready to throw them in the air. "Magmar…Elekid…" He called out as he threw the balls in the air. "COME ON OUT!"
The balls opened and David's two Pokémon appeared before him, ready to follow any orders from their young master.
"Magmar, clear out the stairs of these thorns with Flamethrower!" David ordered with authority.
The Spitfire Pokémon's eyes glow orange as he released an orange-yellow stream of fire from his mouth to the vegetation in front of him. To their surprise, the thorns that covered only the stairway disappeared unnaturally. However, David smirked in satisfaction as he and his Pokémon were able to advance on the staircase, burning away the obstacles that got in the way.
Meanwhile, the evil Queen Nehellenia looked on in glee after watching the Lunarian see her future daughter disappear from existence in total sadness. She had just arrived after the tyrant sealed Sailor Saturn away in a mirror. Lacking remorse, she maintained her smug demeanor.
"Ah poor thing, the fruit of your love has disappeared." Nehellenia teased. "Feel sorrow! Agonize! The nightmare is forever!"
Serena kept her face covered. "What did Rini do…?" Serena asked quietly, though anger started building in her voice. "What did she ever do to YOU!" Serena shouted, looking up and glaring at her.
Nehellenia's eyes glistened in sadistic joy. "Good eyes. Do you hate me?" She asked. "Then hate me even more!" Nehellenia continued gleefully. "Can you see what's behind you?"
Remaining furious with what the cocky queen had done, Serena moved her head to the direction Nehellenia pointed at. To her horror, she saw her fellow Sailor Scouts all trapped in mirrors just above the entryway.
"All that followed you fell under my curse!" Nehellenia cruelly explained, wrapping her arm on the head of the seemingly lifeless Darien. "Now you are the only one left…"
"Why do you do such terrible things?" Serena asked.
"Why everything is for my revenge against you." Nehelenia replied. "To make you feel the same solitude that I felt."
As Nehellenia went on with her insecurities and her self-centered envy towards the blonde-haired girl, David and his Pokémon listened on, hidden on the side of the entryway. The three have managed to get through the bramble of thorns with ease. They had just reached the entry way when they decided to hide on the side of the castle to listen in on how Nehellenia had captured the Sailor Scouts. Each word that came out of that fiend's mouth made David's blood boil. As he took a quick peek at Nehellenia's throne room, the young Pokémon Trainer huddled over to his two Pokémon to devise a plan. At the same time, he had listened on about how lonely Nehellenia was and whatnot, the boy couldn't help snort at such meaningless reasons as to why she did this to Serena. After breaking from the huddle as a plan was made, David quickly gave Magmar something in haste as he went back to listen on some more.
"I don't need friends! I don't need loved ones! I am my friend! I am my beloved! The one who shares my happiness with me, is me!" Nehellenia exclaimed. "I was released from solitude, I defeated loneliness! That's why I have to stay beautiful forever. To never be alone. That's why I needed the Dream Mirrors as much as you need your friends. But you, the White Moon Princess. You sealed me. Cast me into the darkness. Cast me back into solitude! Without the mirror. Into loneliness! DO you understand?"
Nehellenia lashed Serena with her long hair and struck her with bolts of dark energy, knocking her hard against the walls and floor. Each time Serena suffered at the hands of this sadistic monster made David angrier at this pompous tyrant.
Finally, she grasped Serena by the throat. For all its worth, she was close to her heinous goal. "My revenge will finally be complete." She sneered.
Before Nehellenia could do anything though, a thick black smoke started appearing covering the area around Nehellenia and Serena.
"What is this?" The evil queen spat. "What sorcery is this?"
Serena opened her eyes. She noticed the smoke as she was being gripped by Nehellenia. This wasn't some ordinary smoke, let alone smoke that Nehellenia would just make out of the blue since she was already at her mercy. A thought crossed her mind as she knew what it was.
'It's Smokescreen…" Serena thought in her head. "But why…" Her eyes then widened in realization. "…oh no…it must be…"
Before she could even contemplate further, the teenage girl heard her assailant let out a staggering scream, as if she was in pain. In just that instant, Nehellenia dropped Serena as she staggered back, holding onto the shoulder of the arm she used to grasp her. The teenage girl felt a pair of inhuman hands catching her and then gently putting her on the ground on her knees.
As the smoke cleared, she noticed that Nehellenia was looking at her arm to see that somebody stabbed her in the shoulder with a sharp paring knife. Violet blood poured out as a result. Serena looked over to whoever it was that caught her and was surprised at who it was.
"Magmar?" Serena's eyes widened in surprise as she gently caressed her neck while breathing in and out deeply. "If you're here then that means…"
"What is that thing?" Nehellenia shouted. "I thought I had everybody you love fell under my curse!" Her eyes narrowed in dissatisfaction. "No matter, I'll destroy this fiery creature and tear you apart limb from limb…"
"NOT THIS TIME!" A voice shouted from behind.
Before Nehellenia could even look behind her, she felt something cold wrapped around her neck tightly. She howled in surprise and in pain once more as she felt the object wrapped tightly around her throat was a chain. She also felt a pair of feet on her upper back.
Serena's eyes widened in sheer surprise as to who it was that was trying to strangle the evil queen to death. "DAVID!" She shouted.
Nehellenia spun erratically to get whoever it was off of her while David struggled to stay on the witch. He knew that if he does not stop her, not only will he die at her hands, Serena and his Pokémon would also suffer the same fate. He tightly clutched onto the chain, determined to kill this evil queen.
Unfortunately, Nehellenia got her hands on the boy and threw him and the chain used to strangle her off of him. He crashed onto the floor next to both his mentor and his Pokémon.
"David, are you okay?" Serena asked in deep concern, her eyes expressing relief that he didn't die out there in this dimension.
"I'm fine, Serena…" David replied, wrapping his arms around her, content that he was back with her.
Serena embraced him back for a few seconds before breaking off. David turned his attention to Nehellenia, who was getting her breath back after nearly being strangled to death. She cast darkened eyes directly at the one responsible.
"You!" Nehellenia pointed accusingly. "So another cherished fruit of the White Moon Princess' love has managed to escape my curse. How stupid of you to just come here for this hussy. And how dare you for what you just tried to do to me! Big mistake."
"How dare YOU hurting and torturing my cousin like this!" David retorted, venom laced in his words. "My only mistake was that I couldn't stab you in the right place or hang on to you as you were choking."
Despite the surprise attack orchestrated by the young boy, Nehellenia smirked. "Oh, so you hate me that much as well?"
The boy's stormy dark eyes remained fixed on this malevolent queen. "What kind of stupid question is that?" He asked, seething in contempt. His Pokémon stood in front of him, ready to defend his trainer while unbeknownst to the evil queen, David's Elekid hid behind the throne, awaiting more of his trainers orders.. "I heard everything you said to Serena, you and your whole life story. Serena MIGHT feel bad for you, but I DON'T. Every messed up thing you did doesn't make up for all that garbage you try to make yourself innocent. You think you're beautiful? Don't make me puke. Compare to Serena…compare to all of the Sailor Scouts, you are nothing but an evil…jealous…filthy…disgusting…UGLY…WITCH!"
Nehellenia gritted her teeth in rage. Her anger built up with every word the raven-haired kid spat as he harshly criticized her motives and her beauty in comparison to these young women. "You little pest…NO ONE SPEAKS TO QUEEN NEHELLENIA LIKE THAT!" She screamed in contempt. "Oh I won't trap you in the mirror just like your friends. You will be joining that girl that Sailor Moon loved so much!" She pointed her hand at the boy.
"Magmar, use PROTECT!" David ordered.
Magmar crossed his arms as he formed a green force field around himself, David, and Serena just as Nehellenia threw a bolt of black energy at the three. The force field withstood Nehellenia's assault with ease as it was unable to penetrate it. Nehellenia was then forced to stop her attack.
"Fight back with Fire Spin!" David yelled.
The fiery Pokémon released a spiraling red-yellow stream of fire from his mouth at the enemy.
Nehellenia's eyes widened in surprise as the flames curled around her, surrounding her in a tornado of flames. She grunted in pain as she felt the burns from the attack. However, she snorted displeasingly as with a flick of her fingers, she managed to dispel the fire away, much to David and Magmar's disbelief.
"Ha ha ha! Is that the best you got?" Nehellenia bragged, not paying attention to scorch marks on her clothing and even hair. "And you think you are gonna save you precious princess with that? Against a 'witch' like me?"
"Well, I never said it would be easy." David bitterly spat. "But when it's all said and done, two things will be certain: number one, you're going down in more ways than one and number two, you will always be an ugly witch in my eyes!"
-*End of Flashback*-
Grasping the doppelganger by the throat, David glared through the lenses of the masked helmet of the Midniteryder as he remembered what happened. Despite his impressive skills as a trainer, the strength his Pokémon had at the time, the evolution of Elekid into Electabuzz, and the moments where he had caught Nehellenia off-guard, it wasn't enough to defeat the evil queen. Bitterness in his mind came back to him when Nehellenia grabbed him by the throat and Serena had to plead with her to spare him, despite his derogative insults to her. Nehellenia probably would not released him without David forcing her to by stabbing her near the collarbone with an ice pick (A/N: Damn, that kid must really have it in for Nehellenia). In the end, Serena's sympathy of Nehellenia caused the curse that was in Darien to be broken, freeing him from its influence. With the combined power of all the Sailor Scouts (and a bit of David's intervention compliments of a chain-wrapped fist slamming hard into Nehellenia's face, preventing her from attacking the scouts), Serena was able to transform into Eternal Sailor Moon and used her powers to purify the evil queen, putting an end to her rampage once and for all.
"This…can't…be happening!" The apparition spat, angrily. "I was discarded by that weak host I was part of so I can get a second shot of revenge, not end up like this!"
The coloration of the Nehellenia doppelganger suddenly shifted from black to multiple shades of indigo and violet. Everybody except the Midniteryder, Zane, Serenity, and Zane's Pokémon gasped in total shock.
"Nehellenia?" Sailor Mars sputtered in disbelief. She couldn't believe that one of their arch-enemies from the past has returned at least a piece of them.
"Talk…now!" The Midniteryder demanded, coldly.
"I refuse to answer to…*GASP* *GAG* *GAG*" Nehellenia attempted to be uncooperative, only to be choked further by her captor, who was tightening his grip on her throat. "O-KAY! I…WILL TALK!" She relented, rasping through her words.
The Dark Warlord loosened his grip, enough to for the evil tyrant to breathe but also maintained his grasp.
"I am only a living memory fragment of the real Queen Nehellenia. The evil fragment." She stated. "When the White Moon Princess and the rest of the Sailor Scouts purified me…or at least purified my original host body, my essence spiritually transferred over to another spare copy that was part of an evil force. I remained part of the large force for the next four years, biding my time so I can succeed what my failed host could not do and that's revenge!"
This revelation put everybody in total disbelief, including Zane and Serenity. The Midniteryder asked one question that was in everybody's mind. "What evil force?"
However, Nehellenia decided that she didn't felt like being cooperative anymore. She manipulated her hair to wrap itself around the Midniteryder in an attempt to get him off of her. Unfortunately for her, it only provided a minuscule amount of defense as she felt a staggering blow to her gut from the knee of her assailant. Nehellenia then felt herself being tossed to the ground not too far from the Midniteryder. She felt her torso being stepped on by his foot.
Nehellenia gawked in total disbelief and as she struggled to get her breath in. "No fair….no fair, you!" She rasped, irately. "I ripped myself from my weaker original self so I could destroy that blasted White Moon Princess and everything she holds dear; not be beaten up by some tin can!"
Inside the mask, David smirked cruelly as his eyes narrowed sadistically at the joy he had at getting retribution on this ugly witch. "Heh heh heh…" He chuckled harshly in his mechanical voice. "In battle there are no such things as fair or unfair. The two things that are completely relevant in battle are victory or in your case, defeat." The Midniteryder stated, matter-of-factly.
Nehellenia bitterly spat, refusing to accept her inevitable fate at the hands of this mysterious individual. "You…you miserable, dirty abomination!" She angrily yelled, ignoring the irony of what the Midniteryder thought of her. "You are nothing but a warmonger! I am a queen, the ruler of the Dead Moon!"
The tyrant's eyes widened in horror as her enemy pointed the palm of his at her. She saw as volts of electricity surrounded his hand.
"Not anymore…" The Midniteryder stated, matter-of-factly. "You are merely a broken shadow when you came back. And now…you are nothing!" The Dark Warlord then readied himself for the coup de grace on this fiend. 'Electro Blitz!' He intoned in his mind as he shot out a blast of electrical energy from his hand.
The blast found its mark, producing an explosion around the evil queen. A shrill scream was heard as some of the spectators had to shield their eyes. Meanwhile, the remnants of Nehellenia continued to scream in agony as her form was being ripped apart from the electricity. Suddenly, it became silent as all there remained was smoke. The Midniteryder walked out of the smoke as it cleared out, all that's left of the evil queen was an eerily black pus-like puddle.
All of the Sailor Scouts as well as Tuxedo Mask, Zane, Serenity, and Zane's Pokémon looked on in shock. Some were a bit intimidated by the raw power that the Dark Warlord possessed in him. Some (Sailor Uranus, Sailor Mars, and Sailor Jupiter) got into a defensive stance just in case this stranger wanted to focus his wrath on them. Zane and Serenity just simply looked on; after all, they knew for certain whom the Midniteryder is behind the mask but they rather not be the ones who reveal his identity. Out of all of them, Sailor Moon was only one who walked over in the middle of the Midniteryder's line of sight.
Inside the masked helmet, David was very surprised at who he saw. When he was resurrected, his attention was on those apparitions that attacked him. He didn't realize that the Sailor Scouts were here even after Nehellenia was complaining about her ruined shot of revenge.
'Serena…' David quietly muttered in his mind.
It had been a long while since the trainer from Pallet Town had seen his older cousin, at least in his own body. In recent times, the two sadly grew apart as differences between the two clashed. As time passed since the events of Chloe and David's small adventure in the Digital World, David's increasing arrogance and lust for power did not bold well for his loving sensei as she was becoming more and more worried about him. Despite Serena's best attempts to reason and mollify her former pupil every time they actually hang out with each other, David's irrational ego speaks for him and the two end up clashing in an argument. David justified his yearnings of domination and absolutes by criticizing Serena's lack of intensity during her battle against evil as Sailor Moon. He coldly reminded Serena that it was him that saw Serena through that façade she displayed as people like her own boyfriend and those Sailor Starlights seemingly look down on her and/or take advantage of her. He also expressed his dissatisfaction of when Galaxia and Nehellenia nearly had her at their mercy and further claimed that it was because of his tenacity that everything turned out fine. The two coldly argued at each other during the time David was thirteen years old and eventually a wedge was driven between master and apprentice. A mixture of emotions went through the Dark Warlord's head upon seeing his former sensei after nearly a year of no communication.
Sailor Moon looked directly to the red, glowing gauzes of the Midniteryder. Deep inside her, she felt for some reason she knew who the person behind the mask was. Her interest in this mysterious warrior stemmed from those few occasions when he showed up out of nowhere to seemingly assist her and her friends in destroying the remaining monsters that were once minions of the villains the Sailor Scouts fought against. What piqued her curiosity further was the dream she had of him.
Meanwhile, some of the people present were trying to comprehend what was going on. The presence of the white-haired trainer and the girl that was traveling with him, the mysterious fog that warped the area into an unnatural place, the shadowy apparitions that were doppelgangers of their old enemies as well as the evil essence of Queen Nehellenia, and the appearance of the Midniteryder standing before them. Can all of these coincidences be related in some way?
As Sailor Moon was about to break the silence, an evil, eerily laugh filled the air. Everybody looked from side to side to where the source of malevolent chuckle was coming from. Unbeknownst to all of them, the black puddles that once took the forms of the enemies from the Sailor Scouts' past started moving toward each other, taking advantage of the distraction.
"Who are you?" Sailor Moon demanded to know. "SHOW YOURSELF!"
The evil laughter suppressed into a chuckle. "It's been a long time, Sailor Moon…" A female voice cackled from the space-like sky.
The sound of the voice struck a chord in Sailor Moon's memories. A feeling of dread became apparent upon the young woman's face as a sinister figure from the past that nearly took everything from her resurfaced in her head.
"I haven't seen you or any of your fellow scouts since...wait, how long has it been? Unfortunately, I haven't been the same since our previous encounter." The feminine voice pondered. "Let's see, there was me taking the Star Seed of the one in charge of this planet who is also your lover, the summoning of my servants one by one to collect real Star Seeds, me having to execute my incompetent servants for their failures, having to deal with those pathetic Sailor Starlights and their precious princess and that retched 'Light of Hope,' me taking the city you and your loved ones live in by force and rapidly collecting Star Seeds of you and your friends, and…oh that's right, YOU purging my host, ruining my chances to rule the galaxy, and while you hold hands with that self-righteous shell that suppose to be the strongest Sailor Soldier in the galaxy, you left me to die! But you probably don't remember the last part that way huh, Eternal Sailor Moon?"
Sailor Moon gritted her teeth. "Chaos…"
"Chaos?" All of the Sailor Scouts and Tuxedo Mask muttered in unison.
Back to the two humans and their Pokémon, Serenity shivered uncomfortably. "Zane, did things just get cold all of a sudden?"
Zane nodded, a feeling of agitation going through his entire body as well as his Pokémon's. "Yeah, I can sense such intense pure evil in the sky."
The two looked over to the Midniteryder. They saw that he was griping his sword tightly while in a stance that showed that he's ready for a fight. The white-haired trainer's insight also showed that he felt a large amount of rage and hatred building up from his friend's body, as if he knew this being known as Chaos from way back when.
While everybody's attention was at the space-covered sky, the four black puddles combined together to form an even larger mass. The evil substance then slithered silently to a certain direction.
The formless being identified as Chaos laughed once more. "Glad you can remember me, former Moon Princess. Actually, after the outcome of our last encounter you can think of me more as the 'Memory of Chaos' to be perfectly honest. I'm surprised I still have Sailor Galaxia's voice when I had completely taken over her body at that point. How convenient."
Despite the initial shock, Sailor Moon masked it with a suspicious glare. "How? You're supposed to be…" She started, but was interrupted.
"…dispersed back into people's minds?" The Memory of Chaos finished smugly. "One would believe that, but not quite entirely. I don't blame you and your fellow scouts for wanting answers, but I think it's best that I should explain everything in a more 'tangible form' don't you think?"
"SHOW YOURSELF NOW, YOU GODDAMN COWARD!" The Midniteryder demanded.
As soon as those words were invoked, the large black puddle accelerated faster. Serenity looked down and saw it coming towards someone, its reason unknown to her.
"LOOK OUT!" Serenity screamed as she pointed at the moving substance.
Everybody looked at the direction the young teen pointed at. However, it proved to be too late as the black puddle already reached its target: The Dark Warlord, himself.
"What witchcraft is this?" He shouted as the large puddle covered his feet. It then enlarged itself and started quickly covering him like goo. He struggled and swung as sword wildly in feeble attempt to rid himself of this malicious menace.
Meanwhile, everybody else looked on helplessly in reaction to this surprise attack. Most of the Sailor Scouts were too stunned at the distraction of Chaos' voice that caught them off-guard. Meanwhile, Zane gritted his teeth and decided something had to be done, or else this thing would get its way with his best friend.
"Neil, use Aura Sphere at the black substance!" He ordered.
The Pokémon known as Neil launched from his paw a palm-sized orb at the black puddle. It struck the area that was covering the Dark Warlord's torso. The impact produced a small explosion that just covered the Midniteryder. To the Lucario's disbelief, the smoke cleared only to find him still struggling as the puddle was still trying to completely cover his body.
"Damn it!" Zane bitterly spat. "Somehow, I doubt a large one would do any better."
Sailor Moon quickly looked over to Sailor Mars. "Mars, do you think you can use those charms to help?" She asked, her voice actually failing to hide the pleading tone.
The soldier of fire nodded with a confident smirk as she got out an ofuda. "On it, Sailor Moon." She replied, holding up the charm. "Rin, Pyou, Tou, Sha, Kai, Jin, Retsu, Zai, Zen! Evil spirit disperse!"
She then threw the ofuda at the Midniteryder; more specifically the black substance that was covering him. Unfortunately, he was swinging his sword wildly that he managed to accidentally slash the charm in two, rendering it useless.
"Damn it!" Sailor Mars spat. "He keeps moving around with that sword in his hand. No matter…"
The fiery Sailor Scouts got out a few more ofudas and launched them at the black substance once more. However, small droplets of the puddle separated itself from the main puddle and intercepted the charms, disintegrating on contact. Meanwhile, the Midniteryder had one hand on the back of the area where his neck was suppose to be. For some inexplicable reason, the black substance managed to aggravate the old recurring pain that he sustained from two years ago. The black puddle managed to absorb itself inside the Midniteryder as the liquid started evaporate into a dark steam around him. The Dark Warlord screamed in agony as it invaded his body and psyche. All of a sudden, he stopped struggling as his arms and torso limped forward.
The steam subsided after a few seconds, showing the motionless Midniteryder. Horrified gasps were shown on everybody that looked at what just happened. Though his appearance remained the same, the color of his armor was different. His armor was black and grey in certain areas while his masked helmet was also grey with a red trim. The exterior of his cape remained black, but the interior part of it was red. A pair of gold bracelets appeared on his wrists while a shimmering, translucent red aura also covered his entire body and completed his twisted new look.
Sailor Moon completely paled at the new appearance of the Dark Warlord. All this brought back horrible memories. "No…" She muttered as Tuxedo Mask looked at his lover, surprised at her trembling. "Not again…"
"HAHAHAHAHA!" The sinister laughter of Chaos emerging telepathically from the Midniteryder boomed. "AT LAST! I LIVE! I feel much stronger than in Sailor Galaxia's body!"
The Sailor Scouts got into a defensive stance as they faced the newest form of their fiercest, oldest arch-enemy, knowing full well the overwhelming odds that stood against them.
To be continued…
Chloe: Well, the Sailor Scouts' greatest enemy has returned and possessed poor David. Stay tuned to another dramatic chapter in the final arc. Please, R&R.