The Earth Senshi Chronicles - Book One
by Jason C. Ulloa
Having knowledge of the future is both a blessing... and a curse. There are events that I know will happen; events that can be avoided. And what's worse, I cannot change them, even if there is a chance that my actions could alter the future for the better.
All because I have been tasked to preserve this future. This future known as Crystal Tokyo.
From the Gates of Time, I have watched over the reborn Moon Princess and her court. I have watched them face enemy after enemy, threat after threat, leaving my post only when the future of Crystal Tokyo is threatened.
There is one decision in particular that I greatly regret, even to this day. A life that could have been saved. A life that could have brought joy to others, especially to my fellow Sailor Warriors.
But, this life was fated to die before even being born. Unbeknownst to the doctors in attendance, the child's umbilical cord was tied around his neck and strangled him as he was being born.
If this child had lived, the Princess of Jupiter would've had an elder brother. A Prince in a kingdom devoid of them. Queen Serenity had expressed concern at such, seeing that the ruling families of the planets in her realm had no sons to continue the family lines. Or, more importantly, to produce heirs to the power of the Sailor Soldiers.
Still, this Prince was not a part of Crystal Tokyo. As much as I wanted to intervene, I could not. Altering the normal flow of time is not something that I can do on a whim. There are serious repercussions involved in making such a change that would have long reaching effects on the future. I cannot risk the future of Crystal Tokyo just to assuage my conscience.
Sometimes, I curse my inability to act. Sometimes, I wish I never had this duty. Sometimes....
Sometimes, I wonder what could have been. What would've happened if I could have followed my heart, rather than my duty. Would saving that one child really make that much of a difference on Crystal Tokyo?
Sailor Pluto looked up from her musings as she sensed someone approaching. Immediately, she brought her staff to the ready and prepared to summon a Dead Scream. If this person was hostile, they would not find it easy to get past her. As the figure drew closer, the silhouette slowly became more defined, coalesing into a more familiar form. Slowly, she relaxed her guard and let her staff drop back down to rest at her side, but still gripped in her right hand, should her visitor prove to be someone trying to fool her.
"Do not worry, Sailor Pluto," her visitor said as she emerged from the mists of Time. "It is just me."
Pluto relaxed her grip on her staff and went down to one knee. "It is good to see you again, my Queen."
Neo Queen Serenity regarded her for a moment before nodding. "Please stand up, Pluto. I am not here on official business."
The Senshi of Time blinked as she stood back up. "A social call, my Queen?"
"I guess you could call it that," the blonde monarch remarked with a small smile.
Pluto gave the queen a questioning look. There was something in that smile that seemed... off. A little... sad, maybe? "Is everything all right, my Queen?" she asked.
The queen regarded her for a few moments longer before sighing softly. "It is that obvious, Pluto?" she asked, dropping her smile as she glanced away into the mists. "Can I ask you something, Setsuna?"
"What is it you wish to ask me?" Pluto replied, surprised at her use of her old non-Senshi name. She hadn't gone by that name in at least a hundred years.
"I want you to be honest with me," she said as she turned back to her. "Forget that I am your Queen for a moment and speak with me as if I were Tsukino Usagi once again."
Pluto frowned for a moment, then nodded. "I understand."
Serenity nodded back. "Thank you," she said and dropped her head, taking a deep breath as if to prepare herself for the question she wanted to ask.
The flaxen-haired monarch raised her head. Concerned red eyes met concerned blue eyes. "Setsuna, are you... happy?"
The Senshi of Time blinked several times as she registered the question. "...Happy?"
Serenity's expression fell almost unnoticably. Almost. "When I became Neo Queen Serenity, I wanted to build a peaceful kingdom. One where everyone could be happy."
"But, the people are happy," Pluto pointed out. "And we've been at peace for years. Crystal Tokyo is the perfect utopia."
"Is it, Setsuna?" the queen asked pensively. "You haven't answered my question yet. Are you happy?"
Pluto went quiet for a moment as she stared down at the ground. "There's not much happiness in solitude, my Queen."
Serenity gave her a sympathetic look. "I'm sorry, Setsuna. I-"
"Don't worry about it," she interrupted, shaking her head. "I'm used to it, and this job is necessary."
"You must be very lonely."
"You have no idea," she said bitterly.
Serenity turned around and stared off into the mists again. "I know that my people are happy with Crystal Tokyo. I should be pleased with this. Yet...." She trailed off as she let her head droop and sighed sadly. "Yet, my dearest friends - my Sailor Senshi - are far from it."
"It's taken me a long time to realize it," she continued quietly. "Especially, since I have Endymion and Usagi.
"I've spoken with everyone except for Uranus and Neptune. They've kept assuring me that things are all right and that they're happy, but they've forgotten that I've known them for a long time, since before I became the ruler of Crystal Tokyo.
"They're all lonely, Setsuna," she said as she turned back to her, worry evident in her face. "It's as if all they have are their roles as Sailor Senshi. I don't think any of them have been in any relationships in over seventy-five years. They try to hide it from me, but I know that they wish they could've had a chance at happiness like I had with Endymion. But now, when people look at them, they don't see women. They see soldiers. They see the Sailor Senshi, guardians of the Royal Family."
"That's not your fault," Pluto argued.
"I know, but I just wish I could've done something about it sooner," she replied. "I wish you didn't have to stand this lonely duty by yourself. I wish the others could've had a better chance at happiness. I wish...." She trailed off, shaking her head. "But that's all in the past. Regrets I can't do anything about."
Pluto remained silent, thinking about her own regrets that she had been pondering only a few minutes prior.
Serenity noticed the slight change in Pluto's expression. "I suppose you have regrets of your own that you wish you could've done something about?"
"Many," she answered honestly. "However, there was one in particular that I was thinking about before you arrived."
"Tell me," the queen requested curiously.
"As you know, being the Senshi of Time allows me to be able to view possible futures," Pluto explained. "Of course, this means that I've been able to see where certain changes could have made things better at certain points in time. Most of my regrets come from seeing possibilities where things could have been better, but I could not do anything."
The blonde-haired monarch frowned slightly at this news. "Why not?"
Blue eyes blinked questioningly at the unfamiliar word. "Geas?"
"Magical compulsion," Pluto explained. "When I first became Sailor Pluto, your mother, Queen Serenity, charged me with guarding the Gates of Time, as well as protecting the future of the Moon Kingdom. Since the Gates of Time grant those who pass through it the ability to travel through time, there is always the possibility for misuse. To guard against this, each Sailor Pluto to take up this duty are placed under a Geas; to prevent unauthorized use of the Gates of Time, and to protect the future of the Moon Kingdom."
"But if that's the case, then how did the Moon Kingdom fall?" Serenity asked.
"The future is nebulous; it's always changing," the dark-haired Senshi continued. "Once the Geas is in place, the current Sailor Pluto must work toward protecting the current future in effect at the point when the Geas is placed.
"When I became Sailor Pluto, the first thing I did was look into the future of the Moon Kingdom. I was horrified to see that my beloved home would eventually fall, but I was also relieved to see that the Moon Kingdom would eventually be reborn as Crystal Tokyo."
"So, because of that Geas, you were forced to let the Moon Kingdom fall, just so that Crystal Tokyo could come to pass?" Serenity asked, eyes wide open in shock and disbelief.
"The greatest of my many regrets," she replied, hanging her head in shame. "However, the one I was referring to was that of a life that I was unable to save."
Pluto raised her head, but not completely. "Shortly after I assumed my place of duty and discovered the fate of the Moon Kingdom, I tried looking back through the past to see if there was something I could do within the confines of my Geas. Although the endeavor ultimately came up fruitless, I did discover something about the first child of the royal family of Jupiter."
She shook her head. "No. This was before you were born. Before the Princess, a boy was supposed to have been born unto the royal line of Jupiter."
A long silence passed between the two as the queen took that information in. "What happened?"
"Complications arose with his birth. The umbilical cord had somehow tied itself around his neck as he was being born and strangled him. The Prince was born dead."
"A shame," the golden-haired monarch said regretfully. "Makoto would have loved to have an older brother." She regarded Pluto thoughtfully. "Why couldn't you save him?"
"He was not a part of Crystal Tokyo," she replied simply. "Since he was not a vital part of this kingdom, I could not justify using the Gates of Time to save his life. And what was worse was knowing that that Prince could have been matched with one of the Senshi. However, because of the Geas, I was unable to do anything about it."
Serenity shook her head. "Setsuna, my Senshi are miserable. Eventually, they will be required to produce an heir; a daughter that will one day assume the same roles their mothers do now. If it were possible, I would want them to have daughters borne out of the love they have for their significant others, not out of a sense of duty."
"I understand," she nodded. "But no matter how much I may agree with you, there's nothing I can do to change the past."
The golden-haired queen frowned in thought for a moment. "But, what if I were to make a slight alteration in your Geas? For example, if I were make it so that you are able to save that boy?"
Pluto stared. "My Queen...."
"It's only a single, small change," Serenity rationalized, summoning the Ginzuishou to her. "The effect on Crystal Tokyo should be minimal, shouldn't it?"
"I'm not sure," she replied truthfully. "I wasn't able to view very far into that possible future."
The queen paused as she gazed down at the silver crystal in her hand. "Setsuna, I want your honest opinion in this. Do you think allowing this Prince a chance to live would be beneficial to our Kingdom?"
Pluto was silent for a long time, considering the question. Here was a possible chance at redeeming one of her greatest past regrets. However, even if this was a single alteration to the past, the length of time between the present and then was very considerable. Even the smallest changes can become immense with the passage of time. The question here was whether that change would benefit Crystal Tokyo.
"Yes," she finally nodded. "I believe so. At the very least, letting him live would allow the others a chance at happiness."
Serenity nodded and smiled as the Ginzuishou began to softly glow. "Then, please take care of it. And tell your past self that I'm sorry for not doing this sooner."
Author's Note: It's been over a decade since I first started writing the Chronicles! Since my writing style has improved greatly since I first started, I figured it was time for an improved rewrite of the entire first Book of the story. Not just to improve the story, but to have my own little 'canon' from which all my other stories can derive from. That, and there are some plot points in the original that I don't plan on exploring anymore due to some of them being trite and unimaginative. So, I'm going to alter them. The Chronicles after Book 1 will remain, for the most part, unchanged, so don't expect anything else to be too different.
Disclaimer: All original materials belong to their respective owners. Sailor Moon belongs to Naoko Takeuchi and is also Copyright Kodansha, Toei Animation, TV Asahi, Bandai, DIC, Cloverway, Pioneer, etc. No copyright infringement is intended. This story belongs me, so I would appreciate it very much if you would ask for permission before posting it anywhere else.
Earth Senshi Chronicles, Kino Ryoku:
Copyright 1999-2009 Jason C. Ulloa.
All Rights Reserved.