Hotaru Tomoe No Longer

It was one of those bright sunny days in Tokyo and yet Hotaru had this feeling of dark foreboding. She didn't know why she got this feeling, she just did. Maybe it was because the scouts hadn't fought anyone for several years, or maybe it was because Hotaru was feeling depressed. Hidden in the shadows of the school building Hotaru was watching as children her own age played as parents, aunts or uncles came to pick them up. Still she couldn't understand it. After all she had parents too, even if they were her own fellow scouts. Haruka-papa and Michiru-mama were very good to her. They were her parents along with Setsuna. Yet… as Hotaru reached back into her mind, about her original father and mother, her role as Sailor Saturn, and her powers Hotaru just felt like something was missing. The Outers were her parents and yet… A part of her wished she could reclaim the childhood that was lost to her through accidents and duty.

"Hotaru!"

Hotaru snapped out of her thoughts, and looking towards the voice, "Setsuna-mama!"

The Guardian of Time was hiding in the shadows of a tree, but Hotaru could make her out. Setsuna's dark green hair was in disarray and her sailor outfit torn. Something had gone wrong it was deathly clear. Hotaru ran towards Setsuna.

"What happened?" she asked.

Pluto was leaning on her staff, "Monster… in the park… scouts need… help."

Hotaru's eyes grew wide, "How about you? You need-"

Pluto shook her head, "No… you must go… now!"

Hotaru didn't need to be told twice, "Saturn Star Power!"

Before long she was off to the park. When she got there, the scouts were badly beaten. Sailor Mercury was protecting a fallen Sailor Mars. Sailor Moon was trying to help Tuxedo Mask and protect Chibi Moon who was badly hurt. Sailor Neptune and Uranus were attacking the monster with everything they had. Venus and Jupiter were knocked out.

Hotaru ran to Chibi Moon's side, "Chibi-Usa, talk to me," she knelt before her friend.

Chibi Moon turned her head, "I'll be okay."

"Good, stay still while I heal you," Hotaru ordered.

"Ahhhh!"

Everyone turned to where the screamed came from to see Neptune's crumpled form.

"Michiru-mama!"

"Neptune!" Uranus yelled.

Uranus turned to help, only to get knocked into a wall by one of the creature's tentacles.

"Or roots," Hotaru thought, "That thing looks like a demented bush. If I don't do something soon everyone will die. Even with the Outers and Inners that thing isn't dead."

Sailor Moon gasped, "Oh no! Nearly everyone is gone. I need to do something!"

Usagi didn't get to do that something. As far as Hotaru was considered it was her turn to do something. Even if that something would cost her, her life.

"Stop right there!" Saturn shouted.

The thing turned, "And what are you going to do about it little girl?"

She stepped away from the other scouts, getting as close to the monster as possible. Hotaru pointed her glaive at it, "I am Sailor Saturn, the Silent Messiah. I'm not going to let you hurt my family or my friends!"

"Is that so? Give it your best shot," the creature sneered.

"Death Ribbon Revolution!"

Dark ribbons of lightening came racing towards it. The monster howled in pain and glared at Hotaru angrily. It lashed out with its root-like tentacles. Hotaru moved out of the way as one of the roots embedded itself in the ground where Hotaru had stood.

"You hurt me! How dare you hurt me!" it yelled in rage.

Once more it sent tried to whack Hotaru into a wall or crush her into the ground. The other scouts tried to help, but they either got knocked out of the way or were to badly hurt to move. Hotaru herself was barely moving out of the way.

"Death Ribbon Revolution!" Hotaru yelled out again, she thought silently to herself, "Its hurting the thing, but its not dead! It should be dead!"

Finally one of its tentacles swept Hotaru off her feet, while another one grabbed her. It slowly squeezed the breath out of Sailor Saturn.

It smirked, "My master will be very pleased."

Hotaru gasped, "I don't know who your master is, but I'll send this warning to your master!" She raised her glaive above her head.

Sailor Moon tried once more to get to her feet, "Hotaru no!"

Michiru had woken up, she cried out, "HOTARU!"

"Silent Glaive Surprise!"

There was an explosion of purple light and a crater stood where Hotaru and the monster was suppose to be. Haruka stared in disbelief at what had happen. Neptune was crying on her shoulder.

Chibi Moon looked at Sailor Moon and in a small voice she asked, "She'll be back won't she? Just like last time. Right?"

"I don't know… I don't know…" Usagi murmured.

~Three Weeks Later~

The Sailor Scouts were having their usual meeting at Rei's temple, but no one was talking. It had been three weeks and still no one had gotten over Hotaru's death. Many had expected her to return in a form of a baby. A week pasted and then another, and still no sign of her. She wasn't coming back and they would have to accept that. It wasn't until a good time later that Rei noticed that Setsuna was at the door.

"Setsuna! What brings you here?" Rei asked.

Setsuna smiled softly, "News, I was meaning to tell you after the battle, but all of you were injured so badly that I thought it was best to wait."

Haruka nodded, "So, what is it?"

"Hotaru is a baby again, but I have hidden her."

"What?" Makoto stood up, "Why did you do that?"

Michiru nodded, "Yes, why hide her?"

Setsuna's smile was replaced with a soft frown, "She has shown to our unknown foe that she is a great threat. If she comes back as a baby, they will surely kill her. I'm proposing that you let me send her to another dimension."

Now it was Usagi's turn to frown, "But Setsuna, if you do that and then take Hotaru away, won't the parents looking after her be heartbroken?"

"The person I have chosen will think of this only as a mission. There is nothing to worry about," Setsuna reassured them.

Usagi nodded, "Do it, I won't have anyone else die."

Ami smiled, "Yes, it is necessary."

"I hope you know what you're doing," Rei murmured.

Chibi-Usa smiled, "We can watch her sometimes can't we?"

"Everyday if you want," Setsuna answered.

Minako sighed, "We don't have a choice."

"I hate this too, but I have to say yes," Makoto said.

Slowly both Haruka and Michiru nodded, but they didn't say anything.

"Then it is settled, I will send her immediately."