You know it's funny. I've read so many SailorMoon / Ranma1/2 crossovers that the urge to write one has hit me. Savagely.
But then an obstacle appeared before me: The fact that I don't know the first thing about Sailor Moon, having never actually watched the series. But I'm not about to let that stop me. Oh no.
Forget everything you know about Sailor Moon. It's not going to help you here. In actuality, calling this a crossover is a misnomer. This is a fusion.
Eclipse: The Dark Side of the Moon.
Prologue: The (incoherent) inner thoughts of Ranma Saotome.
The way I see it, there must not have been martial arts in the Senshi's era, let alone martial artists. Not by my standards anyway.
It's kind of sad, in a way, to know that an entire civilization could be so entangled with the whims of a single person that its only means of protection rested in those who were specifically appointed by that very same person and those affiliated with her. Those that could be called chosen.
From what I hear, in the Silver Millennium, no civilian had any combat potential whatsoever. Their fight-or-flight response had, for all intents and purposes, been surgically modified, leaving them as little more than harvestable resources in the eyes of the youma and their ilk.
Really, it isn't at all surprising that the Senshi never even considered asking for official help in their shadow war as they subconsciously associated non-senshi with helpless prey, and if I think about it, their own past as regular untrained human beings probably had something to do with it. The sharp contrast involved in the sudden passage from normal to extraordinary must have crystallized the difference even further.
I have nothing against them as people, because regardless of their status as vigilantes, their hearts are in the right place. They are loved by the general populace for a reason.
However, I do have a problem with their abilities. Magic… heh. The way I understand it, their rise in the food chain could be described with a simple analogy. Start with a tall building, stairs and a VIP express elevator. Everyone could take the stairs, but not everyone could make it to the top, because it took effort, determination and time. Those three elements were all variables that depended on one another as well as the individual himself. It was possible to reduce the amount of time required by increasing the two other variables: effort to produce results and determination to maintain the level of effort. Also, because people weren't physically or mentally equal, certain people required less time, effort and determination to get the same results as others.
Still, even if it wasn't feasible, theoretically any human being could become a martial arts master with enough time. The same can't be said for magic.
That fact was dangerous because it opened the possibility for segregation, in spirit if not in practice. Because their magic made them different from everyone else. Because it made them believe that their magic made them special, which was true. But what wasn't true was their belief that since their magic was what allowed them to fight, the same could be said for everyone else.
The logic was simple, if horribly wrong. If magic is what let people fight, then those without it couldn't fight and therefore had to be kept out of dangerous business. For their own safety. You don't have to be an expert at reading people like Nabiki to figure this out. I can still remember the worry in their faces as they adamantly refused to let us help. Refused to let us fight for our own lives. Again, their hearts are in the right place, but being underestimated was irritating. There are still some issues between some of the original members of T-MAG and the Senshi because of that first meeting.
So they routinely and deliberately withheld information about the enemy when it could've helped others learn to defend themselves. The human race was not helpless, regardless of the Senshi's experiences in the past. This was not the Silver millennium. We would not lie down and die, waiting for to be saved from the darkness. Even if our saviors happened to be pretty girls in miniskirts with ancient vendettas.
But maybe I just have a problem with authority figures. After all, the Sailor Senshi at the very least behaved like they had some form of authority.
And that's another point of contention between me and them, just like it was between me and the Amazons before… well before everything. I am a martial artist and they are warriors. On the surface, the two paths could seem to be very similar, but there was one major difference between the two of them. Warriors worked for a government of one kind or another, while martial artists loathed doing the same. They had different methods and beliefs, Offense as opposed to self-defense, and...
I'm fishing for excuses. In the end, I don't really have anything against the Senshi. I just needed to blame someone, anyone… just for a little while. But I know whose fault it really is. The fact of the matter is that the Senshi did their best to keep their war from going out of control and had managed admirably until those monsters got a hold of Happosai. The old freak is a damned fountain of life energy, especially as he is able to draw it from his own perversions.
With that massive source of energy at their disposal, the youma wasted no time in opening a massive gate in Juuban, where their enemies most frequently appeared. The senshi were massively outnumbered and the armed forces were completely unprepared for the magnitude of this newest threat.
Juuban was quickly overtaken and it was only through the quick intervention of the Amazons stationed in Nerima that the greatest disaster was averted.
Cologne, alerted by her many artifacts and sensing that she needed to act quickly in order to avoid the worst, called the swiftest of the Nerima martial artists together: Shampoo, Mousse, Konatsu and myself.
The elder directed us towards four strategic points with identical potted bonsai trees and refused to explain her plans, claiming that there was no time. She was right, but it didn't change the fact that it was just a convenient excuse. But, sensing the urgency in her voice, we obeyed and hastily did our parts.
I arrived at my assigned intersection and shattered the asphalt to reveal the earth below. Then I quickly dug up an appropriately sized hole and carefully lifted the tree from its ceramic container before setting it down inside the opening. For a few seconds I anxiously stood there, puzzled and waiting for something to happen. I wasn't disappointed.
Up until then, the tree seemed as though it was a perfectly normal, if miniaturized plant but all of a sudden, the green leaves of my bonsai glowed white before settling to a light pink. And then the thing began to grow. By the time it finished, it towered over the buildings that surrounded it and thick roots had sprung up from the ground, destroying everything around it.
It turns out that the plants we were carrying were the focus points for a barrier that targeted foreign energy. Anything from this world could go through without problems, but everything else would find their own energy drained and used against them. Since the barrier was self-sustaining, it was a great defense against the invading army.
There were four trees for the four seasons. I had received pink spring, Shampoo had gotten green summer, Mousse had gotten brown autumn and Konatsu had gotten white winter.
Unfortunately, setting up the wall required a tremendous amount of energy. We were later told that the people setting up the barrier usually ended up falling into comas after the fact.
Cologne rerouted all the pathways directly to her. She took up work meant for four powerful Amazon warriors by herself.
By the time we got back to the Cafe, she barely had enough energy to speak. With her last breaths, she explained the workings of the barrier to us and appointed her successor.
Shampoo was now Matriarch of the Amazons, a position she was definitely not ready for, but Cologne had her reasons and apparently they were very good ones. Somehow, she managed to her convince her peers in China of the validity of her request and the suitability of her granddaughter, all in the single hour between our departure and our arrival. Shampoo was now directly responsible for over five thousand women, men and children.
In all fairness, the position wasn't very time-consuming. The Joketsuzoku were a race of Warriors and mostly managed themselves. However, the newest Matriarch was also the liaison between the newly formed Tokyo Martial Arts Guild (T-MAG), the JSDF and the Sailor Senshi.
In terms of outright usefulness, when taking everything and everyone in consideration, the Amazons were definitely the most powerful force battling the youma, followed by the Senshi, T-MAG and the JSDF.
So Shampoo is pretty much responsible for the entire war effort. Scary thought, huh?
It occurred to me one day that with Cologne gone and Happosai captured, I was the premier martial artist in Tokyo.
Funny… winning by what amounts to disqualification feels a lot like losing. Anything Goes huh? Not really.
What am I doing? Wasting time thinking about the past… avoiding what I really came here to think about. The art is changing inside me, in all of us really except the Amazons. Martial artists don't participate in wars. We are wanderers, hermits and monks. Fighting in wars is the business of warriors and I fear that I am turning into one.
The art is to be used solely for self-defense or the defense of others. That is our creed, our gospel. It is the one aspect of our general beliefs that no self-respecting martial artist would betray. Death may come as a result of our actions but we never fight solely to destroy another. Even my old man and Mr. Tendo didn't break it when they trapped the old freak in that hole. They fought to wound him in order to seal him (like they would any other dangerous facet of the art), but they didn't kill him outright.
Some of my friends have broken (or tried to break) this rule in the past, but that's different. Happosai has no self-respect, the Amazons are warriors, Ukyo is a cook, Kuno a wannabe samurai and Ryoga a brawler. They can fight like any martial artist, mimic the movements perfectly, but fighting was never what the art was about. They never managed to glean off the intention. To protect life above all else.
And that's what worries me the most. The art is changing. From defend, disarm and defeat to counter, damage and destroy. Fighting these monsters… fighting with intent to kill, I don't like it at all. I don't like what I'm becoming. I'm scared. I'm scared that one day these new lethal instincts will be unleashed on another human being by accident… or worse.
I don't really have a choice in the matter. None of us do, not anymore. Win or die, that's what it comes down to. But hey, I gotta look on the bright side.
At least I don't have to go to school anymore.