Cyber Moon: Travelers
Episode 1: Out of this world.
By Razor Knight
Last update: May 9, 2009
It was not the first time she was there. It wasn't even the hundredth time, either. But each and every time she was there, she was amazed by the place's layout. Mapping it all was quite hard, and she could guess only the two residents of this plane would be able to navigate through it perfectly. Still, she saw neither of them around. "I guess I came at the wrong time," the Princess muttered to herself, aware of the pun hidden in that statement.
"One can't leave this place for a minute nowadays, without tourists dropping by."
She turned around and smiled. Younger Pluto was there, the least social of all Senshi. A title that her mother had kept for a long time, until her daughter's existance was known by the Senshi. "Isn't Setsuna around?"
Younger Pluto nodded at that. "She will be here soon, we've been checking the surrounding dimensions for any threat to ours."
"That's quite amusing, considering what I'm here for."
"I know, I can see what you're going to ask, yet I can't understand the outcome of..."
"The Outcome?" The Princess was confused by that, though it was an usual state of being for anyone who had met either Sailor Pluto more than once. Or even once, at that.
"Oh, it's nothing you must worry about. Or rather, it's something you will eventually understand, and I'm not going to spoil the surprise."
"Not that I'll have to wait for too long. Right, Setsuna?"
Pluto appeared besides her, smiling. "I see your senses are keener in this new level, Princess."
"So I bet you know what I've come here for."
Pluto reached out her hand, a rather small and featureless watch appearing in her open palm as she did. "You came to ask me if I had any of these around."
"And I see my guess was right," the Princess noted. "But about letting me use one of those..."
Pluto smiled, and two more watches appeared. "I know that you'll be surprised about how much will happen in your trip. I cannot foresee the outcome of it, but I doubt you will have any trouble you can't fight your way through."
The Princess took the three watches and frowned. "Wait, why three? I was only going to tell Hotaru about..."
"Like my daughter here, I don't want to spoil any surprises, Small Lady."
"Just call me Usagi, will you?"
"Sure, Small Lady Usagi," Pluto said with a smile.
Usagi shook her head at that. "So, I suppose you are not opposed to me using these?"
"It will be an interesting experience for you and the other two persons involved. And besides, I'd rather have you use these than having to watch you sulking at how utterly uninteresting your life is."
Usagi couldn't say she hadn't been quite bored, quite often, in the last few hundred years. "Right. Okay, then, I'll go give Hotaru the good news."
Younger Pluto turned to her mother as the Princess vanished. "Are you sure about this, mother?"
"I trust her, I know she won't let anything she finds out there stop her."
"Shouldn't you have warned her about the side-effects of leaving this universe?"
"What can I say? I'm a bored woman, just like her. And it's not like she's not expecting me not to tell her all she needs to know. In any case, she will find out soon enough."
Saki looked at her mother, and shook her head. "Sometimes, mother, I wonder about you..."
"Back so soon?" Hotaru mused, aware that one hour in this side of reality could very well be a century inside the 'limbo.'
Usagi nodded. "My guess was right, Pluto agreed with me."
"Agreed to what?"
"To give me these," she said as the three watches appeared floating right in front of her."
Hotaru looked at the three artifacts with mild interest. "Oh, I know where this is heading, and I can't say I don't like the idea."
Usagi smiled at her. "If we can't find any evil worth fighting against in our universe, then why not check other universes?"
"I like that idea too."
The two turned to see Kyouko entering the room. Usagi frowned. "You like it, good for you, but you're not..."
"That explains why you brought three of them," Hotaru guessed.
"So it does," Usagi agreed. Damn that Time Lady. "Listen, Kyouko, do you realize what kind of dangers we could find out there?"
Kyouko answered with a question of her own. "Do you realize that I spent a few months being beaten up by you, to be strong enough to handle the kind of dangers we could find out there?"
"She's got you there," Hotaru mused.
"You're supposed to side with me on this one," Usagi noted.
Hotaru gave her a neutral stare. "Am I? You and Serenity used to fight side by side, even though you were lacking a lot of experience, too."
"Also," Kyouko interrupted, "if anything happened to either of you, I want to be there..."
"That's actually a good point," Usagi admitted, "We two can't revive each other. But still..."
"If I stay here, I'll never get any battle experience. And considering the fiasco my first few battles have been, I could damn well use the experience."
Usagi frowned at that. True, the enemies Kyouko had been facing those first few times were far out of her league, but she knew that the girl couldn't just be happy with having to be rescued by others all the time. "Okay, I can see your point, and I suppose we could use the help. But it will all depend on the Queen agreeing to this idea."
"I feared you would say that," Kyouko noted, prompting a round of laughter from her two mothers.
"So that's you idea of a family vacation, I suppose."
The three were now talking to Serenity. The Queen had been sitting in her favorite spot in the royal gardens, enjoying a private picnic with Endymion, when the trio had appeared. And neither Queen or King had stopped their picnic, instead asking them to join in.
Usagi smiled. "A family vacation that could possibly turn into training for our daughter and maybe even a challenge for us. It wouldn't be the first time I mix business and pleasure, either."
"I'm wondering, however, why did Pluto have more of those teleporters?" Endymion asked.
"My guess is, she had them built by someone else, or she got them from other realities where the Senshi were gone already." Usagi said, "but I'm just glad she had them."
Serenity frowned. "I wouldn't be myself if I didn't worry about you three going on such a journey, and I'm quite worried, specially for Kyouko. But I know how strong you are, and I think you'll be fine out there."
Usagi smiled "and if things get really bad, we could just get back here."
"Didn't those things have a recharge time?" Serenity asked. She was pretty sure she still remembered how those things worked, or, at least, what she had understood about how those things worked when Ami had tried to explain it to her.
"They work with mana," Usagi said, "and that was a problem for Ami and Terry back then, yes, but to us, nowadays? I can get this thing ready to jump in a second or two."
It made sense, Serenity admitted, since that insane ChibiMoon had, back then, recharged Terry's watch in a blink. The memory of that evil being stirred her doubts, but she shrugged them off with some effort. "I guess that, all things considered, I don't find enough reasons to tell you not to go. Nor I find any reason for Kyouko not to go with you two."
"Besides," Endymion added, "if she doesn't tag along, we'll have her lurking around the system for months."
Kyouko didn't bother arguing to that, she probably would do it anyhow. "Hey, what about the other project I heard about?"
"The spaceship? Ami and Terry are so focused in that one, I think they won't stop until they create something that can take a city-sized crew to the other side of the galaxy in a month."
Kyouko tried to mentally calculate the speed needed for that, but gave up on that quite soon. "Why not just copy the Kh'Sun ships?"
"Because they need too much energy to run, and because they are incredibly slow compared to what we want to do. I hope the Kh'Dar find a planet they can stay in, though."
Usagi was surprised at Serenity's power. She hadn't only revived the humans, nemesians and youma that had died when the Earth exploded, but also the slaves and their ships. Upon realization of what had happened, the myriad of races that had been always under the Kh'Sun's boots had decided to go search for one (or several) planets to live in. They had agreed to give the Senshi the data on the Kh'sun ships' structure, upon hearing Ami's plans, but then had left the solar system for good. Usagi had no real idea what Kh'Dar meant, just as with Kh'Sun, except that, in the Kh'Sun language, it was a good pun making fun of their former masters' race.
"So it will take them a while," Kyouko guessed. "That's good, maybe I'll join the crew once we're back from this trip."
"When are you leaving, anyhow?"
"I'm going to tell the Youngers about this first," Usagi noted, "I bet Hisako will be thrilled to be left in charge again."
"You shouldn't really be the leader anyhow," Hotaru noted, "you're as old as an Elder Senshi. Older than most of them, even."
"Hey, if we're not making a Younger Younger Senshi group for this one," Usagi joked pointing at Kyouko.
"Maybe we could have the new batch of brats be under Kyouko's command, someday," Hotaru joked back.
Kyouko sighed at that. For two millenia-old women, her mothers could sometimes be quite childish.
The travel itself had been, for lack of a better word, boring. No tunnels, no flashy lights, nothing at all to warn them of the displacement. One moment they had been standing outside the Crystal Palace, and the next they were elsewhere. Exactly where, or when, was a question Kyouko couldn't answer at all.
"This looks like Earth," Hotaru commented, "which could mean one of a trillion universes."
"Somehow reminds me of the old Tokyo," Usagi noticed. But a lot of what should be Tokyo was underwater, and the buildings looked strangely different, way taller than she remembered. "Now where the heck are we?"
"I don't know, but I'm sensing living beings right underneath us," Hotaru said. "Humans, but we should still be ready for anything."
"Right," Usagi said and called forth her transformation. "Hmm, something doesn't feel right about this."
Saturn was looking at her (she had also transformed swiftly,) with her one-eyed visor. "This is wrong... Your power level is down to a Guardian Senshi's one." Younger Saturn frowned. "Just how did that..."
"Yours, too," Saturn added, "and mine."
"I guess that's the other surprise Setsuna didn't tell me about," Moon said as she glared up to the sky. "Anyhow, think we can ask the locals why half the city is underwater?"
"We won't even have to move," Saturn said, "I see a few of them coming our way."
Moon looked around and nodded. "I see them too." Army trucks, tanks, planes, and some other vehicles. Is it just me, or they're surrounding us?"
A second after Saturn said that, the many military vehicles opened fire at once.
The woman rushed into a large room and looked around. As usual, everyone was already looking into the problem at hand. "What's the situation?"
"Three unknown entities appeared a few minutes ago, Lieutenant, and the UN already made the first move to 'greet' them."
The woman snorted at that. Those losers and their big guns... Not once had they actually done any damage to their enemy, all they ever did was pissing off those aliens and getting thrashed around. Something clicked in her mind. "Unknown entities, you said? Not Angels?"
"We don't know what they are," the woman said, "but from what my scanners are picking, they've shrugged off the UN's preemptive strike."
"That's not surprising," the man in the far end of the room said. "Deploy the Evangelion units, and tell them to be ready for anything."
"Have these creatures blasted the UN forces yet?"
"No, they aren't moving at all. It's strange, really."
"Maybe that attack was completely uncalled for, then. We shouldn't risk scaring them, or making them strike back. Tell the three pilots not to shoot until they've tried talking to them first." In any case, she thought, maybe the EVAs' very presence would be enough to trigger their attack, something she was hoping wasn't the case.
Other than messing their hair a little, the rain of missiles, bullets and other ballistic weapons had done little damage to the three Senshi. Their mood, however, was quite affected by it. "What's the great idea, attacking us like that?" Younger Saturn almost shouted.
"They must think we're the enemy," Saturn noted, "and if we attack them now, we'll just prove them right," she added to stop her daughter from acting rashly.
"Something's coming," Moon said, "something big."
It was something big, indeed. Three 'somethings,' each of them taller than the buildings around them. And from what Saturn could sense, each was a cyborg, and each had a human pilot inside... But she was sensing another soul in the robots besides that of the pilots. "Strange, for some reason I think I've seen something like this before."
"Identify yourselves," one of the three cyborgs said in a cold, monotone voice.
"She sounds like you did before you joined us, huh?" Moon joked.
Saturn frowned and floated up to the blue robot's face. "We're not from here, but I take it you're the ones defending the Earth in this universe. That's what we do, too, back home."
"Back home?" the red robot said, the voice also female, and the tone quite sarcastic. "So you are alien."
"We're from Earth, only not this Earth," Saturn explained, "so I suppose we are alien to your universe."
"They don't look like Angels," the violet robot commented, its voice male, "and they haven't attacked us. They may be on our side."
"Can't I blast them off, just in case?" the red one asked.
"Asuka..." the purple one started, then sighed.
"I don't think attacking these creatures is a good idea, specially since they have shown no hostility towards us," the blue one added.
"Oh, fine then, what should we do with them? Not that I'm still not considering just blasting them off."
Moon was quite sure she had seen those three before. But where? She floated up too, looking at the red robot. "I don't think I like your tone, girl. We may not look like it, but if you do attack us, then we're going to fight back, and it's going to hurt you."
The girl inside the robot seemed to consider her options, then let out a sigh, and even the robot seemed to deflate as she sighed. "I get it, but are you really in our..." she stopped for a moment. "Yes, Misato, I know that." Another pause. "Fine, but if they blow our base up, I'm going to say 'I told you so,' as many times as I want to."
Moon was trying to figure these three creatures out. The cyborgs were controlled by the humans inside, and apparently, they were getting orders from some higher-up elsewhere. Maybe that was what Hotaru had sensed underneath them? And she now realized something else... She couldn't sense those humans Hotaru talked about. Her powers were really cut down here, and that wasn't a good thing right now. She just hoped the red robot girl didn't try and check the validity of her words, because she wasn't so sure her Guardian-level powers could take on a giant robot.
"Your presence is required at our base, strangers," the blue robot droned, taking Moon out of her brooding.
"Good then, to quote an ancient saying 'take us to your leader.'"
The leader was a man whose eyes seemed to dissect everyone he spoke to from behind his glasses. The Senshi soon knew the man's name was Gendo Ikari, and also learnt the identities of the three teenagers piloting the giant mechs that had intercepted them outside. None of the three Senshi thought about how unlikely it was for fourteen years old teens to be able to pilot such complicated machines, because teens that age weren't supposed to go around throwing elemental attacks, either.
It was quite harder for the 'natives' to believe their story, however. "So you're a group of heroes that defends the planet?" Asuka asked, her tone showing she didn't believe that at all. "What's with the silly suits?"
"What's with the silly suit you were wearing before?" Younger Saturn countered.
"We just need these to use our robots," Asuka said, then rapidly added, "and they're not silly."
"Well, until we're used to our powers, we need to use these suits to access them. And even though we can use those powers while in civilian outfits, we get used to the suits after a few decades," Usagi explained.
"Decades?" Shinji shouted, then seemed to regret his outburst. "Sorry to ask this, but how old are you?"
"You shouldn't ask a lady her age," Saturn mused, causing Shinji to look down to his own feet, "but suffice to say we're many centuries old, despite our looks. Kyouko here is seventeen, however, and one of the youngest members of our group."
"I still think your claim of using magic powers is a bluff," Asuka noted.
Saturn looked at her, just as a wraith appeared to her side, and smiled. "So that's what you think?"
"What is that thing?" Asuka asked, trying not to show fear and almost failing.
"A wraith, a mourning spirit whose only mission is to take life out of the living," Saturn said, then dismissed the creature, "but don't worry, I don't use them unless provoked."
Moon concentrated for a few moments, and a pink energy ball appeared hovering over her extended palm. "And this is what I can do."
Maya was looking at the monitors and flinched. "Sir, whatever that ball is, it's got enough power to blow this whole room to dust."
"That's about right," Moon said with a nod. "In any case, what did your friends out there shoot at us for?"
"They thought you were Angels," Ikari noted.
"Must be the wings," Younger Saturn joked.
Rei, the calm, light blue-haired pilot of the blue Eva, looked at Moon. "Maybe you three could help us with our fight."
"Sounds like a challenge," Moon mused. "Can we see what those creatures look like?"
"Run the tape on our previous battles," Ikari ordered.
Younger Saturn watched the battles with interest. It was amazing to see creatures as large as these Evangelion were move so fast. Their enemies weren't any slower, either, and she wondered if she would be able to fight something that big herself.
Saturn smiled. "I know I remember hearing about these robots and their enemies, back home. Must have been a movie or something like that."
"I remember, too," Moon admitted. The Evangelions, or Evas for short, had been fighting for a while, apparently, and had fought all kinds of creatures, from giant floating balls to an enemy which split in half to fight two of them at a time. "It's too bad we can't measure their power this way."
"But we can measure yours," Ritsuko explained, "and you're close to the readings we got from the strongest Angels. One of you is weaker, though."
"That must be me," Younger Saturn guessed. "But that's okay, fighting enemies weaker than me would be boring."
Moon suddenly looked up. "Incoming."
"An Angel just appeared outside the city, and it's moving towards us. "
"Deploy the Evangelions," Ikari said.
"We'll tag along," Moon said, "time to have some fun."
"You three are insane," Asuka commented before the three pilots rushed out to board their Evas.
"Know where the exit is?" Misato asked.
Moon smiled at that. "Who needs to know that when you can teleport?"
As the three women vanished, Gendo kept staring at the place they had been standing on. "And here I thought our Children had some issues."
"They look bigger in person," Younger Saturn joked.
Asuka's Eva was already busy, shooting a bus-sized machinegun at the enemy. An enemy which was quite obviously unaffected by her attack. "Die already!"
The creature's looks were something else. Its white, cylindric body looked like some kind of plastic, though Saturn couldn't identify any of the materials used to build it. Then again, if the Evas were cyborgs, then these Angels were probably also living beings. It had no arms nor legs, and seemed to be floating above the ground using magic.
The other two Evas joined in, shooting at it, but the creature only backed up slightly. Moon looked around, noticing the buildings in the area had 'vanished.' No, somehow the buildings had burrowed themselves into the ground. That was an idea, she realized, that could be used in cities of her homeworld, and the surrounding worlds, if (or rather, when,) another alien invasion fleet appeared.
She was taken out of her musings rather unexpectedly, as the creature shot an energy beam at her. She felt the hit, yes, but it did nothing to her. "Uhm, you shouldn't have done that."
"May I?" Younger Saturn asked.
Moon smiled at her. "Sure, that big guy shouldn't be a problem to you."
Younger Saturn looked at the creature. "Bet Mako would just kick it out of the planet..." She closed her eyes, concentrating for a few seconds before pointing her index finger at the creature. "Holy Moon Shot." A thin beam of light shot from her finger and passed through the creature.
"Was that supposed to hurt it?" Asuka asked from her Eva, amused by the display of 'power.'
"It will in one second," Younger Saturn said, just before the creature was swallowed by light and exploded.
"She destroyed the Angel in one shot," Rei droned. "Maybe we could hire her."
Younger Saturn smiled. "I'll have to reject that offer, I still want to see other worlds."
"So you're leaving, huh? I was hoping you would help us for a while. "
"We may be back, someday," Usagi noted, "but we still have plenty of places to visit."
"Good luck," Shinji said, a second before the trio vanished. "They were quite... Strange."
"Why can't our Evas shoot beams off their fingers?" Asuka asked.
"Because the 'magic' those women used is unknown to our scientists," Rei explained.
"Hmph. Useless scientists."
"I heard that," Ritsuko said from outside the room.
"It was just a joke!"
The three Senshi were, meanwhile, unsure of what kind of mess they had gotten themselves into. This planet looked like the Earth, but the city they were floating over right now, was overrun by strange creatures.
"They almost look like demons, don't they?"
Saturn had to admit her daughter was quite correct. "I may not have played this one for a long time, but I do remember what it is."
"What do you mean? Was this one a game back home?" Younger Saturn asked.
"A very old game."
Moon tried to remember just where she had seen monsters like the ones roaming around, and as she saw a large, one-eyed, brown ball of meat, she chuckled. "Where's a BFG when you need one?"
A/N: And so it begins. As you can see, this takes on the idea first used in Cyber Moon Chronicles, act 14. This is one of two direct sequels to Cyber Moon Crystal I've planned. I opted against using one of the canon Angels for this one, but in other universes, enemies may be those seen in canon.