The Following Special was originally intended to be an Omake or one shot story, courtesy of Sir Godot, formerly known as Faroush, author of the 'Dark Guild Konoha' fic.
However, upon closer inspection, we decided this would better serve as a 'Special' chapter, kind of like a 'Hyper Battle Movie', which is popular amongst the Heisei Riders (OOO & W Mvie core war Feat. Skull for example).
As such, sit back and enjoy this Tokusatsu masterpiece, courtesy of two Kamen Rider Afficiandos.
Kamen Rider x Kamen Rider: DC Chronicles.
Hasty steps echoed through the empty streets, the cause, a large humanoid insect, it's clawed feet kicking up sparks and gravel as it ran.
The creature was a member of an alien race known only as Worms, a species whose evolutionary curve had led them to developing two highly advanced survival mechanisms.
The first was to imitate a member of a planet's indiginous lifeforms, preferably the dominant one, right down to their memories and mannerisms. Normally this wouldn't be a problem, were it not for the fact they instinctively killed the 'original', taking their lives and living in plain sight.
The second, and most advantageous ability, was the ability to accellerate their molecules to the point they could move at speeds that couldnt be tracked by the naked eye, literally moving at the speed of light.
For countless generations, these two abilities had made the Worms the scourge of the universe, moving from planet to planet, slowly replacing the indiginous lifeforms, reducing the planet to a more suitable environment for their own kind, before moving on to the next when things got too crowded.
Then they came to earth, and everything had gone to hell in a proverbial handbasket.
It had been all accoeding to plan at first, they had carried out their usual tactics, infiltration, replacement, extermination, clean, rinse repeat, and for a while things had been good. Even Humanity's greatest weapons, the Kamen Riders, designed with a 'Clock Up' system to combat them in their enhanced state, hadn't been an issue, for they had agents on the inside, pulling strings, ensuring that the masked warriors would dance to their tune.
Then came the arrival of the Destroyer, and everything had fallen apart in a lightspeed minute, their leader had been struck down, and the Rider's had a new weapon at their disposal to make hunting down Worms all the easier: The Clock-Down System, a device that forcibly cancelled out the 'Clock Up' effect, making it so the Worms couldn't use their only offensive advantage.
It had been a massacre, the Riders literally swooping in, rounding up any and all Worms, regardless of how well they hid, and finishing them off when the poor bastards has tried to flee. As it was, THIS worm had been lucky enough to escape with his life, and that was only because he'd sacrificed several of it's comrades to do so.
'I can't die...' he swore, his breath coming in ragged gasps, too scared to even think of Clocking Up in case it drew the attention of the Riders 'I will not die! Not here! Not like this!'.
He paused after a moment, his superior hearing detecting the sound of humans nearby, going about their ordinary, mundane lives, ignorant of the danger that lurked only a few feet away. sensing no prying eyes, it activated it's camoflage ability, drawing on the recorded information within, it's green body blurring and flickering for a few seconds, before it began to shrink, it's form shifting into that of a tall, dark haired young man with regal purple eyes and almost feminine features.
Smirking to itself, the Worm couldn't help but preen in a nearby window, admiring the admittedly handsome, for a mammal, features of the man that had broght ruin upon his race. He had indeed been lucky to copy the Destroyer's form before being discovered, not for it's looks, but for the brilliant mind the form had bequeathed him. True, the memories were a little blurry, and caused actual PAIN if he tried to forcibly access them, but he could live with that for now. After all, what was a little pain when one could make the perfect escape.
Even without the Destroyer's Memories, it could see the writing on the wall: The Worms were finished, those who weren't killed during the hunts would have to live out their lives in hiding, always living in fear that the Riders would track them down. However, if the memories it had copied were correct, and it had no reason to doubt it's race's own genetic ability, then there was an easy way for it to escape such a fate...all it would take was a little wish...
And so the Worm made it's way through the moderately filled streets, smiling amiably and reacting as the Destroyer would have, in order to avoid rousing suspicion, but quickly nontheless, one eye always scanning the crowd for the slightest hint of an armoured form, or the stark black of a ZECT Trooper uniform.
Soon enough, it found what it was looking for, right where it's copied memories had indicated it would be. Sure enough, as it lurked in the shadows of a nearby aley, it watched the people pass in front of it's target, not even glancing in it's direction, as if there was nothing there worth giving a moment's notice. However, for the worm, and to those who needed it's services, the building before him was the first, and sometimes last point of call they would ever make.
Waiting for the coast to clear, the Worm stepped forwards, keeping a wary eye out for any passing pedestrians, before stepping through the two, seemingly worn down gateposts, stepping out of the dusty backstreets and into a well-tended garden that belonged to a traditional Japanese house, the kind that hadn't for some time since the Worm's first invasion, and had been rare even before then.
Sure enough, just as the copied memories indicated, there was the proprieter of this miraculous establishment, sitting, as ever, on the wooden patio, as if he'd been expecting company, though it could just as easily have been the lit japanese pipe in his hands that had driven him to do so, his features certainly possessed that emotionless tint that came from substance abuse.
"Welcome to my store..." the proprieter called out, blowing a smoke ring into the air, his eyes turning languidly to regard the intruder with an all-knowing stare that betrayed no emotion whatsoever, yet at the same time seemed to peer right through him "You're looking rather haggard, Worm-san."
The Worm jolted, his borrowed features twisting into a mask of surprise at how easily he'd been discovered. Truth be told, not even the Destroyer's memories could tell him anything concrete about the Proprieter of this miraculous establishment, as the bespectacled man was as frugal with his secrets as he was in his services, but he had at least held confidence in his ability to completely imitate the Destroyer in every way, yet the proprieter had seen through him immediately.
"No need to act so surprised." the Proprieter spoke up during the ensuing silence "Your race's camoflage ability is impressive, one of the best I've ever encoutnered, but it doesn't matter what guise you wear, the wards around the store can instantly tell when someone isn't exactly what they seem." he smiled cryptically at the Worm "Besides, Lelouch-san would never leave the others behind."
The worm growled, his borrowed features twisted into an animalistc snarl, wondering if it should transform and threaten the man into giving it what it wanted, only for the Destroyer's memories to caution against such a move. While he'd not seen the Proprieter use any offensive abilites, the defences of the store itself were DEEPLY ingrained into his memory, and those were simply the passive wards designed to drive off unwanted visitors. It didn't take a genius for him to deduce that anything that DIRECTLY threatened the occupants of the store would'nt get off so lightly.
"Come now, there's no need to scowl like that." the Proprieter chided, a hint of amusement in his tone, though his eyes remained as emotionless as ever "After all, as I'm sure you know from Lelouch's memories, only those who have a wish can enter this shop...and anyone who enters is to be considered a customer."
"Ah, yes..." the Worm recalled, his borrowed features twisting into a cruel smile that was at the same time alien and yet oddly fitting, as if the Destroyer had borne such an expression at some point in the past "The Sub-clause: The price of being able to grant any wish, is that you MUST grant any wish..." he spread his arm wide "And after all, it's not as if sending me to another world would be too far outside your abilities."
"You are correct," the proprieter agreed, his expression unreadable as ever "then again, I can hardly see how you could be wrong, considering whose memories you've stolen." he blew another smoke ring into the air, the worm frowning as he swore it took the form of a butterfly for a brief second "However, as I'm sure you 'remember', I do not work for free, there will be a price to pay."
"Name it, I don't care what it is." the worm insisted, a manic grin spreading across his borrowed lips at how perfectly everything was falling into place. Nontheless, it would still feel a LOT happier if the blasted, four eyed shopkeep would get a move on, the longer it spent in this world, the greater the chance that the Destroyer would find him, and considering the last time they crossed paths, he didn't feel like getting reacquainted anytime soon.
"You're certain you don't want to hear my price first?" the Proprieter asked, sighing softly as the Worm growled at him, shaking his head at the doppleganger's impatience "Very well, as you wish: In exchange for allowing you to travel to another world, the price shall be your ability to transform." he held the Worm's startled gaze with his own "You will be able to transform one more time, but never again after that, so I advise you to pick your next form wisely. After all it goes without saying that should you run into Lelouch-kun during your tenure, your life won't be worth the time it takes to slot a card."
"He'll have to find me first." the Worm countered with a sneer, though internally, the idea of running into the Destroyer again sent shivers down his spine "And considering the multitude of parallel and alternate worlds out there, It's far more likely that I'll have died of old age before he sets foot on mine."
"As you will." the Proprieter offered, shrugging dismissively, as if it really didn't matter to HIM if the worm wanted to throw it's life away, which it DIDN'T "All you need to do is step back through the gateposts and you'll be in another world, far different from this one."
"Thanks." the Worm offered, sneering one last time with his borrowed features as he turned on his heel, moving towards the gateposts with a decidedly eager spring in his step.
Sure, the idea of spending the rest of his life bound to one, singular form was daunting, but it mattered little in the long run, as he would retain the vast intellect he gained from the Destroyer's form, as well as his ability to resume his 'worm' form, which was independant of their camoflage ability. With the Destroyers mind, a new face, and his own natural powers, he would soon show the humans, or whatever the hell occupied this new world, precisely why the Worms were the ultimate life forms.
As the Worm vanishes...
Watanuki watched the Lelouch worm as it made for the gateposts, not quite running, but certainly not as calmly as it liked to belive it appeared, his expression unreadable as it passed through the portal and into the next world, wherever that was. The moment it was gone, however, a wry smile spread across the storekeeper's lips, followed by the timely arrival of Mokona Modoki, the little black rabbit creature hopping up to perch on his shoulder.
"Geez, what a rude fellow!" the black manju bun muttered, it's features lined with annoyance as he shook it's head, or what counted for it's head, considering it didn't really have a neck or torso "I hope it gets its butt kicked!"
"He WAS rather rude, wasn't he?" Watanuki chuckled, pushing up his spectacles with one hand "Makes me wonder how much of it was natural and how much it retained from Lelouch-san's personality." he chuckled to himself "Still, I think you may just get your wish Mokona...after all, Lelouch-kun does so detest leaving loose ends lying around, and having a Worm running around with his face and memories must have come as a terrible blow to his pride."
"I'll drink to that!" Mokona cheered, the animated manju bun pulling a giant sake bottle, easily ten times larger than itself, out of thin air, popping the cork before chugging the contents down like nobody's business.
"Hey now..." Watanuki chided, eyeing the black rabbit thing with a petulant expression "Leave me a little, will you?"
While Watanuki and Mokona get plastered...
The Worm stepped through the gateposts, and despite the memories at his disposal, he couldn't help but be amazed to find himself not in the same dusty alley as before. To be fair, it was STILL a dusty alley, but the air itself tasted different from the world he'd just vacated, cleaner, fresher, with a decided lack of sand in the air, lacking the sense of imminent danger that was custmary in HIS world.
In the worm's original world, the surviving human populace had always hurried about their business in order to avoid being caught up in Worm attacks, not that it had helped them much, even AFTER the coming of the Destroyer and the Advent of the Clock Down system, they had carried themselves with an air of caution.
Here, it could tell that the people were calm, cheerful, confident in their superiority as the top of the food chain. It made him want to smile actually, they were worse than sheep, unawares that a wold was stalking them, disguised in the wool of one of their own.
'And speaking of disguises...' it muttered, scowl returning as it eyed the crowd before it warily, trying to pick out a suitable target. As much as it loathed the idea of sacrificing the Destroyer's memories, it didn't want to take the chance of running into him again, and there was no garuntee that Watanuki wouldn't outright tell him where he'd went.
So he needed a new disguise, one with connections, preferably, as he didn't like the idea of spending the rest of eternity as some bum off the street. Normally this wouldn't be an issue, but then again, normally he would'nt have offered up his ability to travel to another world.
"Lelouch-san? Is that you?" a voice called out, the Worm whipping round, lavender eyes widening in alarm at having been recognized so soon, cursing itself for lingering in the alley for so long and Watanuki for sending his pursuers after him, only to blink as he came face to face with a tall young man with black hair, dressed in a green jacket over a black shirt and grey slacks, a slightly surprised look on his face.
"It really is you, Lelouch-san." the man noted, smiling at the worm, completely unaware that he was literally face to face with a monster "What are you doing here? Out shopping, I don't see your bike anywhere."
"O-oh...yeah..." The Worm offered, smiling at the man, though on the inside it was struggling to keep from cackling at the current situation. From this brief encounter, he had already deduced that while the man before him was familliar with 'Lelouch', his inability to recognize him implied it couldn't be the SAME Lelouch that he had copied, meaning the Destroyer hadn't come to this world yet. Not only that, but it could FEEL the power coming off the man, buried deep, true, but there nontheless, as if the man contained a small sun within his tall, well-kept frame.
'It looms like I've found the perfect host already...' the worm noted, suppressing the urge to cackle as the mind it had inherrited from the Destroyer whirled into action, already putting together a devious plan, the likes of which had brought HIS world to it's knees. "Actually, I had a bit of engine trouble earlier." he lied, nodding his head towards the alley he'd just walked out of moments before "Think you can help me out a bit? It'd go faster with some help."
"Sure, what are friends for, right?" the tall man agreed, smiling kindly, missing the dark look that crossed the Worm's stolen features as he stepped into the alley, the worm following sit, it's eyes glowing a murderous purple in the gloom.
A few second later, and the young man stepped out of the alley once more, a dark, twisted smirk adorning his handsome features as he pulled on a pair of shades and walked out into the unassuming crowd.
At a cafe in another part of Juuban, Lelouch Lamperouge closed his laptop with a tired sigh.
It had been a week since Yuuichirou had left for his training in the mountains, and so far the Death Buster's seemed to by lying low. Whether it be to regroup after their last defeat, or to devise some new strategy against him, he really couldn't tell, but for the moment he was glad for the break, as it allowed him to focus on his OTHER pressing agenda: Namely how to go about integrating the technology of HIS world into this one.
Despite what some people might think, trying to help humanity's technology evolve from the shadows was not an easy task, even for someone like him. It required having the right connections, money, both in large quantities, which he sadly lacked, one of the MANY disadvantages of living off the grid.
It certainly didn't help that a he had to deal with a certain gold-coloured bug's constant banter.
"Done already?" C3 asked, the Golden Caucasus Zecter buzzing close to his ear to avoid being seen by a passing pedestrian "Good, you've done nothing but go over the same texts for two days now, we really need to work on your stamina, for more than one reason I'd say."
"Quiet you." Lelouch warned, glaring at the Zecter in annoyance "Unlike you, I have other things than fighting Daimon to worry about." he gestured to his laptop "Acquiring the funding and connections neccessary to carry out my OTHER projects, and I doubt I'll strike it rich even if I used my Geass on every Crime Familly in Tokyo..." he paused for thought "Well...maybe if they have ties to Tokyo University..."
"Why don't you just go to university yourself?" C3 suggested, the golden bug landing on the former Emperor's head just to annoy him a little more "After all, it's not like playing the prodigy would be particularly hard for you, right?"
"Because I'd rather avoid the spotlight if at all possible." Lelouch admitted, deciding that trying to get C3 of his head would only result in more headache (both due to internal and external reasons), the former Emperor simply allowed the Zecter to remain there "For one thing, the having the paparazzi trailing me around would make fighting the Death Busters a LITTLE hard, don't you think?"
"There is THAT..." C3 agreed, the two sitting in silence for a moment, before the Zecter spoke up again, her tone as coy and teasing as her namesake's "So? What are will you do now? Maybe a little tête-à-tête with one of the Sailor Senshi?"
"Hardly." Lelouch snorted, rising to his feet with a groan from sitting on the bench for so long "I was thinking of going to another underground gambling club, one I haven't been to before. It should be both relaxing and useful. Who says you can't combine work and pleasure?"
"I can think of one occupation that certainly fits the bill." C3 replied coyly, her tone making it all to clear precisely WHICH profession she was implying, Lelouch's features heating up in mortification as he lashed out at the bug, sending her buzzing off into the air, her laughter trailing down at him like God's laughter as he turned on his heel and stormed off to liberate some poor fools of their most likely ill-gained cash.
Needless to say, several illegal gambling halls were forced to close by the end of the day.
While Lelouch was setting out to relieve his stress by adding to those of the Tokyo underworld society, in a by now familliar alley, three new figures had just stepped through the gateposts that led to the Ichihara Shoten, their voices rasied in an apparent arguement.
One of these figures was a young man with blue eyes and brown hair, dressed in a white sckool shirt over a black vest with casual slacks and trainers. The Second was a freckled girl with her brown hair done up in pigtails at the back, dressed in a teal school uniform over a white blouse with a red bow tie.
However, it was the LAST figure that our focus was drawn to, not because he was dressed in a rather spiffy looking business suit despite their location and the weather, but because his features were a dead ringer for a certain former Emperor of Britannia.
"Good Grief..." Lelouch muttered, his aristocratic features marred with a scowl as he glared around the alley "I thought we'd seen the last of those damned worms when we left Kabuto's world...now that damned four eyes springs THIS shit on me."
"Calm down Lelouch" Shinji urged, the younger teen eyeing the elder warily, as if wondering if it would be safer to step back inside the Gateposts for the remainder of the trip, as the last time Lelouch had crossed paths with his Worm Double hadn't been pretty. "It's just one Worm, it shouldn't be that hard to take care of it."
"Ikari-kun's right, Lamperouge-san!" the girl, Hikari Horaki insisted, her tone soothing, though she still had her thumb at the ready should the elder teen need a little persuasion "Try to look at it as a little vacation: For the first time we are not in a Rider World. I bet we will see some interesting things."
"Vacation?" Lelouch scoffed, shaking his head dismissively at the freckled girl's optimistic view of their situation "Yeah right, more like clean-up duty, all because that bespectacled miser couldn't tell the difference between ME and a bloody Worm."
Had Lelouch been paying attention, he might have noticed the warning gestures Shinji was sending his way, as it were however, he was so caught up in his little rant that he was completely caught off guard when Hikari's hair trigger snapped, the freckled Girl stepping swiftly forward and jabbing her extended thumb into the side of his neck with a cry of "LAUGHING PRESSURE POINT!"
"You shouldn't badmouth Watanuki-san like that!" the freckled girl chastised, standing over Lelouch like some disapproving diety as the elder teen rolled on the ground, laughing in uncontrollable agony "You know he has to grant the wish of anyone who comes to him! If anything it's YOUR fault for letting the Worm slip away in the first place!"
Shinji simply sighed, the younger teen standing at a safe distance behind Hikari as the girl delivered her lecture, having learned from experience that saying things like that around their travelling companion was the stupidist thing you could do, a lesson, sadly, that Lelouch seemed to be unable to learn.
It took a few seconds for Lelouch to recover his wits, the elder teen glaring at Hikari as he got to his feet, only to be ignored by the freckled girl, as always. "All matters of guilt aside, we should start looking for the Worm before it can cover any more ground." he reasoned, eyeing the pair carefully "Normally I'd suggest keeping an eye out for anyone that looks like me, but considering they can imitate memories and intelligence as well, it's probably already changed forms and is lying low, which mean's Shinji's ability to sense worms is our best bet."
Shinji nodded grimly, the younger teen's features set in a determined scowl. He'd seen what the worms had done to Kabuto's world, how they'd driven the human population almost to the point of extinction, and wasn't about to sit back and let that happen here, where there were no other Riders to deal with the threat "So where should we start searching?"
"Well, even if he changes forms, since I was the first person he mimicked, my personality will be deeply ingrained into his psyche." Lelouch deduced, smirking proudly, earning a sigh of exasperation from his travelling companions "And if I had been given a new lease of life, I know EXACTLY the first thing I'd want to do..."
"And that would be?" Shinji asked, only to shiver slightly as the elder teen smiled at him. It wasn't a menacing smile, or even one of his sarcastic ones, but nontheless, the younger teen couldn't help but feel something very bad was about to happen."
"I'm glad you asked, Shinji." Lelouch replied, his tone coy and regal as ever "Tell me, have either of you ever played chess?"
"This is a very bad idea." Shinji whispered to himself, the younger teen eyeing the underground gambling club around him warily, shivering slightly at the sight of so many Yakuza gathered in one spot. True, he'd faced more terrifyig things in his life, Misato's cooking for one, but he was still a teenager, and any teenager with their head screwed on right knew better than to mess with the numerous Yakuza clans that made Tokyo their home.
To make matters worse, he was currently playing in a shogi match against a rather intimidating older man that even he could tell was either a highly ranked memer of the Yakuza or the Oyabun himself, the armed men in suits with sunglasses standing around their table certainly impied he wasn't somone to fuck around with.
"Relax, Shinji." Lelouch's disembodied voice whispered from his earing, the older teen having chosen to infiltrate the establishment as a waiter to avoid drawing attention to himself, as the Worm would most likely be wary of anyone with his face at the moment "Just do as I say and you will be fine."
The plan, as detailed by Lelouch, was simplicity itself. Lelouch had used his strange ability to influence people to gain access to one of the largest 'offical' gambling casinoes in the city. There, he'd set things up so that Shinji, who was wearing a suit and shades that reminded him FAR too much of his father, would challenge several high-stakes members to games of chess, shogi and go, all the while being guided by Lelouch, who was roaming the lower-stakes area as a waiter to avoid attracting attention, the two communicating via an ingenious communications device that took the form of a pair of earrings.
"Where did you even get these from?" Shinji whispered behind his bridged hands, wincing slightly at the throb from his recently pierced ear. hoping to whatever god that was available that the guards didn't notice, though it seemed his luck was holding up at the minute, as not even the boss, who was sitting right across from him, gave any sign that he suspected anything.
"Watanuki gave it to me as an apology for this entire mess." Lelouch admitted, his tone dismissive "Said a snake gave it to him or something, I wasn't really paying attention. Now stop asking questions and focus on the game. Just whisper your opponent's moves and I'll tell you what to do."
Shinji sighed, knowing better to question the older teen's orders, simply doing as he was told, the game between him and the Oyabun lasting well into an hour, Shinji unable to help but marvel at the skillful moves Lelouch was using, making a mental note to ask the older teen to teach him the game when they got back to Watanuki's shop, even as he moved his Knight forward for a surprise check of his opponent's king.
The Guards stiffened, and for a moment Shinji feared he'd have to fight his way out of the establishment, but to his surprise the Oyabun, a small, bald little man with a tiger-striped haori, held up a hand, an approving smile on his face as he congratulated the teen on a game well played, handing him a business card for the 'Fujimura-Gumi', his clan no doubt, before walking off, his guards following in his wake.
"That was quite a game." a voice noted, and it took all of Shinji's willpower to not jump out of his seat, the younger teen unable to believe they could possibly have been so lucky as he turned to face the source, only to find himself face to face with the familliar, regal features of Lelouch Lamperouge, set in their trademark confident smirk, his lavender eyes glinting in approval "Mind playing me next? I have a Chess board set up over here."
"Y-yeah, sure." Shinji stammered, shaking himself out of his shock, the younger teen reaching up and rubbing his ear in a supposedly nervous gesture, though was actually a pre-set signal to alert Lelouch and the others tha he'd found their target...or at least someone that COULD be the target.
Lelouch perked up as his earing picked up the signal from Shinji, the elder teen not halting in his duties as a waiter in order to avoid raising suspicon, though he made a point to slowly make his way towards the high-stakes area where the the target had been located, a frown adorning his features.
'That was easier than expected...' he muttered, weaving his way through the crowds towards the high-stakes area 'Almost too easy...I know I was counting on the Worm retaining my personality and mannerisms, but for it to be this easy...'
In Lelouch's experience, nothing was EVEr as easy as it first appeared. It could very well be that the Worm had anticipated their coming and had laid a trap of it's own. It could very well be the entire establishment was under it's control, and that any second now they could be peppered with lead.
'Oh the joys of having a competent opponent.' he sighed, a wry smirk adorning his features as he looked around for Hikari, only to sigh as he found her sitting before the slot reels, feeding a steady stream of coins into the machine with a growing look of iritation. "Come on." he muttered, dropping a hand on her shoulder, snapping her out of her daze "Shinji's spotted the Worm, let's go."
"Just one more time!" the Hikari begged, her eyes glinting with determination, only to wilt in the face of Lelouch's quirked brow, the freckled girl allowing the elder teen to lead her away from the machine, which was soon taken over by some other poor sucker, who seemed to be having no better luck than her.
As stealthily as possible the two made their way towards the High-stakes are, Lelouch all the while giving Shinji instructions for his chess match, his expression growing decidedly more devious as the match proceeded, his certainty that they were facing off against his Double all but certain, as every move he made was countered by one just as brilliant, just as daring, their playing styles so identical it left no doubt in his mind that Shinji had happened across their target.
Sure enough, after some careful positioning and footwork, the two found themselves with a clear view of the table where the game was taking place, Lelouch's eyes narrowing as they landed on his double, who unlike him was dressed in casual clothes, a red denim jacket over a black sleevless shirt and jeans.
He couldn't help but envy the worm, as it had been HELL to walk around in the hot Tokyo sun wearing nothing but black, even if he DID look damn good in it.
However, just as he was about to make his move, the sound of a cellphone alarm cut through the air, Lelouch looking on warily as his doppleganger stiffened, reaching into his coat pocket and pulled out a cellphone, flipping it open to glare at the screen.
"Daimon." he muttered, his voice laced with such irritation at being interrupted that Lelouch couldn't help but relate, though the sentiment was soon lost, for at that moment the wall at the far side of the Casinoe exploded inwards, showering the room with dust and flying debris.
After the Explosion...
'Dammit...' Lelouch cursed as he staggered out of the crumbling building, using the dust and confusion to avoid being spotted by any of the Casino's staff, who had a bad habit of shooting first and not bothering to ask questions later 'I should've been paying attention.'
The Fromer Emperor had every reason to be upset, as he'd been so caught up in the surprisingly challenging chess match that he must have missed an alert, allowing Eudial, or some other Death Buster, to slip right under his guard and unleash a Daimon on the Casno.
'Why would they target a casino though?' he wondered, frowning in confusion as he staggered into a nearby alley 'Gamblers are hardly likely to possess pure hearts...'
Shaking his head, he pulled out his cellphone, hoping to pinpoint the Daimon before it could attack it's target, whoever the hell it was, only to frown as the screen flickered, almost as if the damned thing seemed unsure whether or not there actually was a Daimon. "Stupid thing," he muttered, giving it a shake "is it broken or something?"
"Hardly." C3 countered, the Zecter sounding annoyed as it buzzed down to hober next to Lelouch's head "My scanner's are picking up some strange energy readings in the immediate area..." it elaborated tersely, as if it had a headacne "I don't know what the hell it is, but it's messing with my ability to detect Daimon energy signatures."
"You think the Death Busters are beind this?" Lelouch asked, his tone understandably tense, as the ability to track Daimons was one of the sole advantages they had over the enemy. Things had gotten a lot harder after Eudial had replaced Kaolinite on the frontlines, the younger redhead preferring to use pre-packaged Daimon instead of sending out Seeds like her predecessor, making it harder to track their movements.
Harder, but not impossible, as the redhead had a nasty habit of driving like she was in a demolition derby regardless of where she went, which meant all Lelouch had to do was keep an eye out for police reports involving a white station wagon with a black star on the doors to be able to predict where she'd strike next. However, if the Death Busters were finally stepping up their game to the point they'd devised a way to jam his tracking ability, then that meant they were in BIG trouble.
Before C3 could formulate a reply however, a roar emerged from the crumbling building, the two looking on warily as the dust finally began to settle, revealing the form of their attacker for all to see.
"That isn't a Daimon." Lelouch muttered warily, and indeed the being that stood amidst the debris of the destroyed club looked nothing like the Daimon that had attacked them so far, which had always taken the form of scantily clad, vaguely female monsters that wouldn't have looked out of place at an anime convention, a fact which honsetly made Lelouch question the tastes of their enemies.
The only resemblance the creature before them bore to a human being was that it possessed two arms and legs, but the similarities ended there. It was larger than an average human, standing on two cloven hooves, it's heavily muscled body covered in pale white skin. It's head was shaped like a pig, or rather a boar, for two curved tusks curved from under it's snout, glinting in the sun as it turned to regard them with it's sole golden eye.
The Boar Hollow had arrived in a world that wasn't its own.
And it wasn't very happy.
Inside the Casino...
Lelouch cursed, the elder teen looking on in concern as Shinji helped support a limping Hikari, the two teens having managed to avoid being injured by the blast thanks to their reflexes and instincts as Riders warning them of the incomming danger. Unfortunately, Hikari, being a civillian, lacked such abilities, and despite Lelouch's attempts to pull the girl to safety, she'd still injured her leg thanks to a piece of falling debris and was now unable to stand properly, let alone run.
'I knew this was too good to be true...' Lelouch muttered, his eyes narrowed as he glared in the direction the Boar Hollow had disappered in, the big dumb brute having lumbered right past them thanks to the thick layer of dust and debris hiding them from view 'Looks like the walls between the worlds are getting weaker…no way in HELL something like that can exist in a world without Riders...'
"Shinji." he spoke up, the younger Rider looking up as he pulled out the Decadriver, his face like stone as the belt formed around his waist, "Protect Hikari while I deal with this guy."
Shinji nodded in affirmation, picking up a protesting Hikari bridal style and making to carry her off the field while Lelouch marched towards the Boar Hollow, the elder teen's eyes hard as he drew closer to his porcine opponent, which growled as he enterred it's field of vision, it's sole golden eye glinting in recogntion as he reached for the Ride Booker.
"HOLD IT!" a voice called out, the combatants and onlookers turning to see a most peculiar sight, namely five teenage girls, Junior-High school at best, wearing decidedly revealing Sailor Suits whilst standing in verious poses as they glared at the Hollow accusingly.
"Even if Gambling is a sin, to attack innocent people is something I cannot allow!" the apparent ringleader, a pigtaled blonde with red knee boots and a pink brooch, called out, her pretty features set in determined, disapproving scowl "In the name of the Moon, we shall punish you!"
Needless to say, the the travellers, human and otherwise, were stunned by this turn of events, the Boar Hollow actually gaping at the scantilly clad teenagers with something akin to disbelief, rather like a boar that had been snuck on and stuck with a spear by a skilled hunter actually. It soon changed it's tune, however, when the scantily clad girls started attacking it, roaring in anger as it was hit by flames, lightning, frost and for some reason, a glowing tiara, it's massiv fists forcing the girls to scatter to avoid being smashed against the pavement.
"Um...guys...?" Shinji muttered, the younger teen unable to drag his eyes away from the fight as he spoke, his tone decidedly nervous, not unlike one who's fragile grip on reality has shifted somewhat "Are you seeing what I am seeing? Or did a piece of debris hit my head and I just didn't notice?"
"If you mean the teenage girls in rather…peculiar outfits then, I am seeing the same thing Ikari-kun. And I know I wasn't hit by anything." Hikari answered, the freckled girl gaping at the scene before her, clearly trying to make sense of this latest experience in her travels with Lelouch.
Ever since she'd met the elder teen, she'd found herself developing a fairly high tolerance for things many would consider weird, a necessity for anyone that kept company with Watanuki for an extended period of time, never mind countless nasties that her travel companions routinely had to fend off on their journey.
That being said, the sight of five teenage girls, dressed in uniforms that would NOT be unappreciated in a strip club, running around fighting a monster even Riders took seriously, was something no one could simply ignore. Riders and Monsters she could stomach, but this was a whole new level of weird.
"Vacation my foot." Lelouch grumbled, the elder teen glaring at the fight as if it personally insulted him "Just what kind of world did that crazy shopkeeper send us off to this time…?" he muttered, only to sigh in defeat as the pigtailed blonde's scream tore through the air, the Boar Hollow having almost landed a direct hit on her, were it not for a timely attack from the other blonde throwing of it's aim "Looks like I'd better step in..." he muttered, striding out of the ruined building, his eyes locked on the monster before him, which lead to him missing the looks of surprise on the faces of the strangely clad females.
"Damn...this thing's tough..." Jupiter muttered, the brunette Senshi of Thunder glaring up at the Boar monster as it shrugged off her attack "Looks like the Death Busters decided to up the ante a little bit!"
"I'm not so certain it belongs to the Death Busters..." Mercury countered, her visor out as she tried to scan the creature, looking for it's weak point "I'm not getting any of the readings that we normally get from a Daimon...and this doesn't seem like the kind of place where you'd find a Pure Heart Crystal."
"Well then what the hell is it?" Mars demanded, the hotheaded priestess glaring at their 'fearless leader' as she tried to pull the pigtailed blonde out from behind her "And where the hell did it come from? For that matter, how do we beat it?"
"I...don't know..." Mercury admitted uneasily, her voice tight with concern even as her fingers blurred across the keyboard "I've never seen anything like this before...the creature's chemical makeup...it's like nothing from this world!"
"So what, it's an alien?" Sailor Venus queried, driving the boar back with a Crescent Beam to the eye, only to pull up short as she espied a familliar face walking towards them "Hey wait, isn't that Lelouch-san?"
"Oh my gosh it is!" Mercury exclaimed, the shy bluenette looking on in horror, her visor easily allowing ehr to identify the foreign teenager that had befriended them all "What in the world is HE doing here?"
"Hey!" Moon called out, the reincarnated Princess of the Silver Millenium calling out to the handsome teen, waving her arms over her head to get his attention "Get away from here! It's too dangerous!"
But Lelouch ignored the warning, the Senshi looking on in alarm as he calmly held a strange, silver device up to his waist, a silver belt forming around it, holding it in place, a strange silver book like device appearing at his hip. Looking on in confusion, the senshi could only watch as Lelouch reached down to the buckle, with a swiftness that spoke of experience, reached down to the strange silver case and pulled out a card "Henshin!" he called out, out, slipping the card in the buckle even as the Boar monster turned to face him.
"Kamen Ride:…" The buckle announced with a mechanical chime, Lelouch promptly pushing the levers at it's side into place, returning the buckle to it's original position, a pink light shining from the centre, revealing a crest like a barcode "DECADE!"
At that moment, nine symbols formed in mid-air around the teen, resembling the one that was visible on the teen's buckle, overlapping with the silhouettes of nine different armored figures, which suddenly converged on Lelouch's body, forming a suit of armour, pink, black and white in colour, the green eyes of the helmet lighting up as the barcode-like horns attached themselves into place.
"Decade!" the boar creature hissed, the Senshi gaping at it in shock, having not expected it to possess the ability to speak, even as it threw it's head back and let loose a loud, squealing roar, it's massive fists clenched tightly as it charged the armoured figure.
"Now then..." the figure that had been Lelouch muttered, his voice distorted by his armor as he jumped into the air, his fist pulled back as he attacked the monster head on "Let's send you back where you came from!"
Needless to say, the Senshi didn't know how to react to what they had just seen. Before their very eyes Lelouch, the mysterious young foreigner they had met only a few weeks ago, yet had quickly earned a place in theit small, cherished circle of friends had just transformed into a Kamen Rider.
"I can't believe it." Sailor Venus said with a stunned look on her face, a sentiment shared by the other Senshi, the Fuku-clad warriors of love and justice trying to wrap their minds around this latest mystery concerning their new friend.
They certainly weren't the only ones.
Off to the side...
"C3… did you get a good look at that guy?" Lelouch asked, his features lined with confusion, which was only understandable, as it wasn't every day that you saw yourself transform into a masked warrior and tackle a monster head on...not from THIS point of view that is "Because either I'm going crazy, or the guy currently ripping that thing a new one is me."
"I can assure you, I'm just as confused as you are." C3 assured him, her tone unusually serious "If my sensors are right, and they always are, then it is really you who's standing over there." it buzzed uncertainly "But that armor… I have never seen anything like this, not even in T's database."
Lelouch's eyes narrowed, the former emperor glaring at the pink-clad warrior distrustfully. Had it been any other person, he would've gladly welcomed the arrival of another Rider, after carefully making sure they weren't a threat to either his or the Senshi's mission that is. But for a Rider to appear out of thin air, bearing HIS face no less, just when a strange monster that CLEARLY wasn't a Daimon attacked? Color him cynical, but there was definitely something going on here. And it probably wasn't anything good.
"C3..." he called out, the Zecter turning to face him as he raised his arm, his finger resting on the button of his henshin brace "Let's go." he insisted "I have some questions I want to ask that guy."
"I thought you'd never ask." C3 noted, her tone amused even as Lelouch pressed the button on the bracer, earning a mechanized cry of "STANDBY!" as the Caucasus Zecter connected with it, resulting in a cry of "HENSHIN!"
Decade was tearing the Boar Hollow apart, the Passing Through Rider eyed Rider almost feeling pity for the dumb brute as itstumbled about, trying to hit him. Almost being the key word, as it was clear from the creature's action that it was one of those few Hollows that considered humans to be less than insects, evidenced by it's casual destruction of public property.
'Time to finish this...' he muttered, dodging the Hollow's massive fist and delivering a perfect counter punch to its stomach, doubling the larger creature over and sending it flying backwards, squealing like a stuck pig. As it tried unsuccessfully to climb to it's cloven hooves, Decade drew another card from the Ride Booker, pulling apart the handles of the Decadriver to reveal the card slot, swiftly inserting the card and slamming the buckle shut again.
"Final Attack Ride:..." the Decadriver declared, numerous golden, rectangular panels forming between Decade and his opponent, each panel covered with the Rider's own symbol as they hovered in the air "D-D-D-DECADE!"
"HAH!" Decade yelled, the Rider leaping into the air, the panels following him, forming a line between him as his target, the Hollow having finally managed to stagger to it's feet, only to seemingly realize it was far to late, bringing it's massive arms up in a feeble bid to protect itself as as the Rider descended towards him, seemingly warping through the cards, picking up speed with each pasing, flying out of the the last one with his right leg extended in a fierce kick that smashed through the feeble guard and into the Hollow's chest, sending it flying backwards once more, except this time, rather than attempting to get up, the Hollow simply exploded, leaving behind a pile of white sand.
"And that is that..." the Passing Through Rider muttered, landing gracefully and dusting off his hands, not even sparing a second glance at the creature he had just destroyed as he turned to walk away, only to pull up short at the sound of running footsteps.
"Lelouch-san! Please wait!" five distinctly female voices called out, none of them familliar, but then considering the state of his memories, he supposed he shouldn't be surprised, though he certainly was when he turned to fce the voices, only to find the five suggestively dressed girls that had challenged the Boar Hollow running towards him, their admittedly pretty faces lined with looks of confusion, anxiety and surprise.
'Sailor Senshi...' a part of Lelouch's brain that seemed to instinctively recognize any and all situations whispered, the Passing Through Rider relaxing omewhat as he 'realised' precisely who was standing before him, his mental library filling him in on the history of the scantily clad warrior's of Love and Justice, including their powers, true names, and for some odd rason, their three sizes and taste in underwear.
By now, the Senshi had caught up to him, the Passing Through Rider regarding them silently with his helmet's green eyes, noting that they seemed a little unsure as to how to go about asking him whatever was on their minds. Just as the Pigtailed Blonde, Sailor Moon, otherwise known as Usagi Tsukino, the reincarnation of Princess Serenity of the Moon Kingdom, seemed to muster up the courage to do so, an armoured fist slammed into his helmet, sending him flying backwards through the air.
'What the HELL!' the former Emperor stammered, completely blindsided by the unexpected attack, as from what little he knew of the senshi, they weren't the type to blindside someone out of the blue, unless it was quite obvious they were whatever monster of the week the enemy employed against them. Furthermore, none of the Senshi could move so fast that he couldn't have dodged or blocked such a blow, and while they were no pushovers, he highly doubted they could've hit him so hard he could feel it through his armour.
That, and the fact he'd felt this sensation before, the sensation of being completely and utterly at a person's mercy as they pummelled him from all angles, his every move meaning little as the enemy overwhelmed him with pure, unadulterated speed and power.
'Clock Up-!' he realized, swearing profusely as he flew through the air, a realization that was soon confirmed as a loud, mechanical voice announced "CLOCK OVER!" the moment he crashed into the ground, a familliar golden figure appearing between him and the startled Senshi.
Caucasus braced himself as he dropped out of Clock up, the golden Rider appeared a few yards between the mysterious Rider and the Senshi, his Masked Form replaced by the more offensive Rider Form. Despite his back being to the Senshi, he could feel their shocked gazes boring into him, not surprising really, as he had, in their eyes, just attacked someone who looked just like their friend. He only hoped he could resolve their confusion without having to unmask himself before them, the security implications aside, it was too soon for the Senshi to learn who he was.
"Caucasus-san?" Sailor Moon gasped, finally managing to find her tongue after the sudden, unexpected assault of the mysterious Rider by their more familliar ally "Why did you attack Lelouch-san?" she demanded, her voice tinged with concern for her friend and confusion as to why their mysterious ally would do such a thing unprovoked.
"I know you are confused about this…" Caucasus muttered, turning his head slightly to peer over his shoulder at the Senshi, though he kept his back to them, not wanting to expose himself to the Doppleganger unnecessarily, there was no telling what abilities this new Rider had "but believe me, this is NOT Lelouch. I don't know who he is or how he took this form, but this man is not your friend."
"Really smooth." C3's chuckled mockingly via the link inside the Rider's helmet, the Golden Zecter clearly enjoying the current situation to no end, earning a warning growl from her partner that was cut short by a familliar snort.
"That's a really rude thing to say," the foreign Rider called out, the Senshi and Caucasus turned to see he had once again gottent o his feet, looking relatively unscathed by Caucasus Clocked-Up sukcer punch, a fact which irked the Rider to no end "talk about the pot caling the kettle black, Worm?"
"Worm?" Mercury repeated, the blue-fuku sporting Senshi of Ice blinking at the unfamilliar term, staring between the two Riders in confusion "What do you mean by that? Are you really Lelouch-san?"
"I'm A Lelouch, if that's what you're asking, though whether I'm the one you're familliar with is debateable." the foreign Rider admitted, Caucasus stiffening at the admission, the former Emperor wondering if, perhaps, this was the Lelouch of another World, it certainly wasn't the first time he'd encountered a Parallel World after all, he was technically living in one at the moment. "As for what I mean: a Worm is an alien life form that can assume the form, memories and abilities of a human being, so perfectly that not even the victims friends and family couldn't tell the difference."
The Senshi recoiled in horror at the description, and even Caucasus had to admit, the idea of facing something that could so effectively camoflage itself was a daunting prospect. ANYONE could be an enemy, your best friend, your parents, hell, even YOU might not truly be yourself, simply remnants of some poor unfortunate that had been at the wrong place at the wrong time when the creature had struck.
"I came to this world to track down a Worm that escaped here." the green-eyed Rider revealed, his tone dangerous "They're predators by nature, hiding amongst humans, waiting for the opportune moment to strike, assuming the form of their latest kill before moving onto the next." He glanced at Caucasus, and despite the helmet obscuring his features, the Golden Rider had n doubt the other Lelouch was scowling at him "However, I never would've guessed that it had managed to steal a Kamen Rider System..."
"Wait what?" Caucasus blinked, not liking the way this conversation was going, especially considering the looks on the faces of the Senshi "Hold on! I'm not a Worm or whatever the hell you call them!"
"Then how do you possess a Kabuto series Rider System?" the Green-Eyed Rider demanded, his voice coldly calculating "That technology doesn't belong in this world, the very fact that you possess it makes you the #1 suspect."
Caucasus swore, the Golden Rider noticing the looks in the eyes of the Senshi, realizing they were slowly starting to believe the new Rider over him "In that case, you're equally suspicious!" he countered, pointing at the Rider accusingly "You claim you're from a parallel world? Prove it!"
"Gladly..." the Green-Eyed Rider conceded, reaching down to the silver case at his hip, converting it into a sword with a flick of his wrist "The time for pleasantries is over… I'll make you reveal yourself."
With that he lunged forwards, his strange sword swinging towards Caucasus's head, the Golden Rider blocking it instantly with his right arm, grimacing when he felt the force behind the blow. Whoever this strange Rider was, he was strong, but not unduly so, if anything, Caucasus was confident that in terms of strength, and most certainly speed, he held the advantage.
To prove it, he lashed out, forcing the green-eyed Rider back, the golden Rider quickly using that moment's instability to quickly close the gap between them, delivering a powerful punch to his opponent's torso, the green-eyed Rider stumbling backwards from the impact, only to retaliate by bringing up his strange weapon once more, only this time, it had converted into a sort of firearm, Caucasus cursing as several bursts of energy fired from the thing, ramming into his torso with the force of coannonfire, sending the golden Rider stumbling backwards.
The battle went on, both sides taking heavy damage, landing in cheap blows that threw off their opponent's game, until finally, Caucasus' patience had reached its end, the golden Rider deciding to end this NOW, slapping the pad on his hip before disappearing with a mechanized cry of "CLOCK UP!"
"Ah shit..." the Passing Through Rider muttered, mentally kicking himself for not aiming for allowing the Golden Rider time to go for his Clock Up switch, though his thoughts soon turned to defence as he found himself assaulted from all sides by a golden blurr that, he knew from experience, was merely the after image of his opponent moving at the speed of light.
After what seemed like an eternity, but in actuality had more likely only been a minute at most, the assault finally ended and Decade fell to the ground once more, cursing at the pain tearing through his battered frame, even as Caucasus reappeared with a mechanized cry of "CLOCK OVER!". the Golden Rider standing over him, just out of reach of a retaliatory sword stroke or gunshot.
"Give up." He ordered, his tone commanding, confident in his superiority, the same tone Decade himself often employed against his foes, the Passing-Through Rider feeling his hackles rise as he glared up at his foe "You cannot defeat me. Tell me who you are and we might be able to resolve this peacefully."
"You're right..." he muttered, gritting his teeth as he got to his feet, his legs shaking ever so slightlly as he drew another card from the Ride Booker "As I am now I cannot defeat you..." he grinned as he held the card up, revealing the ZECT crest "So let's slip into something a little more appropriate, shall we?"
"KAMEN RIDE:..." The Decadriver declared, Caucasus tensing as Decade slammed the levers together, the Zect crest appearing in the centre "KABUTO!"
Before the eyes of everyone present, Decade's form vanished beneath a series of grey hexagonal plates, which shattered, forcing Caucasus to back away a step, the Golde Rider's gapin in surprise as the Green-Eyed Rider's form was replaced by a taller form, dressed in a black bodysuit under red and silver armor, the helmet, which now possesed large a large blue visor, not unlike his own, was biscected by a large red horn that did indeed resemble that of a Kabuto beetle.
"Now then..." D-Kabuto called out, his tone confident in the face of his foe's shock "Let me join you on the path of heaven."
With the senshi...
"What the heck? He changed his form!" Venus exclaimed, the Senshi of love's eyes widening in surprise, as well as some slight disgust, as she had never been a big fan of insects, even AFTER Caucasus had shown up.
"It looks a lot like Caucasus-san's armour...' Mercury noted, her scanner out once again as she compared the two Riders, marvelling at their technology "I wonder if it has the same capabilities?"
As if to answer her question, D-Kabuto drew antoher card from the Ride Booker, slotting it into his belt, which called out "Attack Ride:..." just as Caucasus slapped the device on his hip, the two rider's vanishing with a joint cry of "CLOCK UP!", leaving the Senshi looking on in wonderment as the two God-Speed Warriors duked it out at the speed of light, the Senshi only able to tell where they had been thanks to the occasional shower of sparks that erupted whenever one of the Rider's landed a blow.
"CLOCK OVER!", each glaring at the other hatefully, their breath coming in ragged gasps, their respective armours dented in places, covered by scrapes and dirt, making it clear to all that, now that the advantage of Clock Up had been dealt with, the two Rider's were easily matched.
"We need to do something..." Jupiter insisted, the Senshi of Thunder unable to keep standing around while a friend was in danger, the fact that TWO such friends were the ones fighting only made her desire to help out all the more insistant "At this rate they're going to kill each other!"
"STOP!" Sailor Moon called out, the Pig-Tailed Senshi stepping forward, intending to get between the Riders even as they made to lunge at one another again, only to blink as they pulled up short, looking down to see a single red rose embed itself in the concrete between the combatant's, halting them in their tracks "Tuxedo Kamen-sama!"
Sure enough, standing atop a nearby building, wearing his trademark black Tuxedo as his black opera cape billowed behind him, stood Tuxedo Kamen, otherwise known as Mamoru Chiba, ally of the Sailor Senshi and the reincarnated prince of the Earth
"To attack a comrade is to attack his comrades as well." the Masked Prince called out, his blue eyes hard as he glared down at D-Kabuto from on high "I cannot stand by and let this senseless battle continue." With these words the masked warrior jumped down from the building, his cape fluttering and framing his form.
"A rose?" D-Kabuto demanded, the Red and silver Rider somehow managing to express his exasperation despite the helmet obscuring his features from view "Are you kidding me? Who the hell throw's a Rose in battle?"
"Don't ask me..." Caucasus muttered, the Golden Rider unable to help agreeing with his opponent, as he always considered Mamoru's flair for the dramatics to be a little on the far side of cheesy, and this was coming from HIM of all people!
Heedless of the mockery he was receiving courtesy of his fellow Masked Warriors, the Tuxedo sporting Prince leapt down from his perch, landing agile,y like a cat, despite the fact a normal man would've broken his leg at that height, the Senshi turning to face him in relief.
"What should we do, Tuxedo Kamen-sama?" Sailor Moon asked, her helplessness clearly visible as she gaped up at her lover/future husband, waving her arms empathetically "Lelouch-san transformed into this strange Kamen Rider who can change forms and accused Caucasus-san of being an alien worm!"
"I'm already aware..." Tuxedo Kamen assured them, his expression undreadable thanks to the mask that concealed his eyes, but the Rider's had the distinct impression that he was glaring at them with barely concealed anger "Unfortunately, girls...I fear iwe have a bigger problem on our hands..."
"What do you mean?" Sailor Moon asked, peering up at her lover in concern, only to blink as the Rose on the ground sparked, her eyes widening in shock as magical energy lanced out of it, Caucasus and D-Kabuto howling in agony as it shocked them within their armour "Mamo-chan! What are you doing!"
"I'm sorry Usako, but I don't have a choice..." Tuxedo Kamen muttered, his features lined with concern as he watched the Rider's struggle against the painful energy "If we let the Destroyer loose, he will destroy everything we hold dear."
"The...Destroyer?" Sailor Moon repeated, blinking at her lover in confusion, a sentiment shared by the rest of the Senshi as they stared between him and the Riders "What do you mean, Mamo-chan?"
"I had a vision the other night..." Tuxedo Kamen explained, his expression hard "The Shitennou appeared before me, warning me that the Destroyer of Worlds would appear, and that his passing would signal the end of all we hold dear..."
"You bastard..." D-Kabuto growled, struggling to raise his head, only to be driven to the ground once more as another wave of magical lightning crashed into him, a cry of agony tearing from his throat, joining alongside Caucasus'.
"They said that he would wear the face of one we held dear," Tuxedo Kamen continued, and though his features were unreadable, his eyes seemed to glint with some dark, hidden emotion "That he would try to tempt us with honeyed words and visions of destruction, only to stab us in the back when he had earned our trust."
"Then...he really ISN'T Lelouch-san?" Sailor Moon wondered, staring at the trapped Riders in disbelief, wincing as their howls of agony reached her, before turning back to her future husband in concern "But then why did you attack Caucasus-san as well?"
"Because he ISN'T Caucasus." Tuxedo Kamen replied, and for the first time, a look of angry certainty covered his face, the Tuxedo-clad prince glaring at the Golden Rider with an almost TANGIBLE hatred in his eyes "The Real Caucasus is DEAD. I SAW him die." he nodded towards the Rider as the Senshi gasped in horror "This THING is an imposter, no doubt sent by the Death Busters to get us to drop out guard."
"It can't be..." Sailor Moon stammered, the Senshi looking lost and horrified by what they'd just heard "Caucasus-san...dead?"
"You son of a-!" Caucasus swore, pushing himself off the ground, only to be met with much of the same success as D-Kabuto, the two of them dropping to the ground once again as a fresh wave of agoniizing magical lighting washed over them "Gah-!"
"I know this sounds hard, Usa-ko..." Tuxedo Kamen muttered, reaching up to stroke the distraught leader of the Senshi's cheek with one gloved hand "I know you don't like the act of taking another's life. But the Destroyer of Worlds lives only to live up to his title, he won't rest until there's nothing left of earth but dust in space." he held her chin "For th sake of our future...for the sake of Crystal Tokyo...we must destroy them now, while they're defenceless!"
"Mamoru-san!" Mercury exclaimed, the senshi looking at the Tuxedo-clad prince in admonishment, shocked that he would ask their leader to do such a thing, only to fall silent as Sailor Moon stepped forwards, her Spiral Heart Moon Rod in hand, the pigtailed Senshi looking troubed but determined as she stood before the Riders, her blue eyed filled with a determined kind of sadness that only those faced with an unpleasant, but necessary task possess.
"I'm sorry..." she offered, and she meant it, the Riders looking up to see tears of pity streaming down her cheeks, the Senshi looking on in a kind of shocked wonder, Mercury and Jupiter averting their eyes, while Venus and Mars seemed unconfortable, but resigned.
And behind them all, his features locked in a dark smile that had long thought been banished by the destruction of Queen MEtallia, stood Tuxedo Kamen, his eyes shinging with triumph as he watched the Pigtailed Senshi raise her Moon Rod over her head.
"MOON SPIRAL HEART-!"
Part one of the Christmas Special, Hope you enjoyed it!
Tune in next time for the Finale!