Oh my goodness. I never expected this story to continue this far-I expected to lose interest in writing it well before this point. But over the months since Chapter 3 was published, I've been working on fleshing out the backstory for the opponents, and working on outlines for the fourth and fifth chapters.
So, here we go!
Rei, bouncing on her knees, asked "So, you really fell into an actual cursed spring!?"
"What on Earth are you two talking about, there's no such thing as a curse," Ami said matter-of-factly.
At that, Makoto replied with "Ami. You are aware of how our lives have been going for the past few years, right?"
"Yes, of course!"
"So you do realize how it sounds for a girl who can fire bubbles and ice at monsters to say there's no such things as curses."
"Girls, can we get back to my being right about what happened to Mamoru?"
"Thank you, Minako."
"So, I managed to get the professor out of the way in time, but I fell into the spring instead. When I climbed out, it took me a little while to realize that anything was wrong... but I guess it's not something that's WRONG exactly, just something that I'll have to deal with from now on... but I still think it's really weird..."
"Mamo-chan, what happened?" Usagi interrupted. "I've never seen you this shy before."
Sighing, Mamoru continued. "Look, I know I wasn't here for the last fights you guys had, bu tdo you remember what you told me about the Three Lights?"
"Yeah, they were Senshi who pretended to be guys here," Minako said, her chin resting on her hands. "It was kinda awkward when we found out, now that I think about it."
Okay, that reaction makes talking about this just that much more tricky. Mamoru looked around at the girls, all with similar expectant expressions. "Maybe I should just show you what happened. Rei, I hate to bother you, but could you get me some hot and some cold water?"
"Sure, Mamoru. But why-"
"It's just that it'll be easier to show all of you than to explain it, but the water is sort of the 'trigger' for the curse."
Shrugging at the other, equally confused, girls, Rei turned and left for the kitchen.
Looking at the least vocal participants in the discussion, Mamoru asked "Luna, Artemis, do you remember hearing about a place called Jusenkyo at any point in the past?"
"I think I might remember hearing something along those lines..." Luna scrunched up her face in concentration. "But, if you went there, which-"
"I'm back!" Rei called, returning with a tray holding a pitcher of water, a kettle, and several glasses. She then set the tray down on the low table.
"Thank you." Mamoru poured a glass of water from the pitcher, and lifted it over his head.
"What are you doing?" Usagi asked, looking at him with concern.
"I'm showing you what happened to me." Please don't be mad at me for this. The Prince of Earth then unceremoniously dumped the water over his head.
Expressions of shock spread across the room. Luna and Artemis were stoic, Makoto and Minako slumped down a bit, while Ami and Rei stared. Usagi's eyes started misting over a little.
Mamoru was now a girl, about a half-foot shorter than (s)he usually was. Now about Makoto's height, she was still tall for a girl. Her(?) hair was now a medium purple, and that stupid green jacket was now far too baggy for her. She was about as "stacked" as Haruka—which is to say, not at all.
Mamoru looked over to Usagi, beginning to panic at the look in the princess's face. "Usagi, it's still me, please don't cry, I can change b-"
"Eee! You're so cute!"
"Usagi," Ami asked, "Aren't you a little weirded out by this?" The soldier of Mercury was having difficulty wrapping her head around the water-based transformation that just happened.
"Well, yeah, it's a little weird seeing Mamoru as a girl, but it's still him right? Why should it matter what gender you are? You're still my Prince!" Usagi was virtually bouncing on her heels, directing the former to Ami and the latter to Mamoru.
Rei held up a hand, partly to shush Usagi, and partly as if she was asking a question in class. "Can I ask something?" Mamoru nodded. "What about you becoming Tuxedo Mask now?"
Sweating a little, Mamoru replied "I can honestly say that I don't know. I haven't exactly had any time to test that out, since I've been with... er, non-involved people since it happened."
From Ami's bag, the Mercury Super Computer beeped several times, calling attention to itself. Blushing furiously, Ami opened the palm-top, eyes widening when she saw the message on the screen.
"There's a monster sighting in the shopping district. We'd better get down there."
Nodding in agreement, the girls rose and ran off into the rain. Mamoru hesitated, and then, tightening her belt, followed them, while the cats remained at the temple.
Juuban shopping district
The rain continues. The girls have transformed in an alley, and begin to face off against the aggressor of the day.
Said monster was masculine in figure, wearing a draped toga with enormous dual-layered shoulder pads. He was winged, with tall, spiked, orange hair.
The monster was busy summoning whirlwinds to cause general mayhem in the plaza when the five Sailor Senshi arrived on scene. Sailor Moon was in her Eternal form, while the inner soldiers were in their Super forms.
Deciding that now was as good a time as any to give her speech, Moon shouted "Stop right there!"
"A-hem... I SAID, Stop right there!"
Havoc continues to be wrought. Mars begins to snicker.
"Say, doesn't it look kind of familiar?" Venus commented, looking carefully at the daily villain.
Flustered, Moon yells, "STOP-RIGHT-THERE-THE-PLAZA-IS-MEANT-FOR-EVERYONE-AND WHY AREN'T YOU LISTENING TO ME!?"
Unfortunately, all that this accomplished was drawing the monster's "fire". After being struck by a large whirlwind, the five girls were forced to scatter.
"Well, fine then!" Moon said, recovering her footing. "Girls, I need time to get my attack ready, can you buy me some time?"
Winking, Mars gave a thumbs-up, and shot off a Flame Sniper attack.
Meanwhile, a still-female Mamoru arrived in the same alley the others had used to transform. While lighting and energy beams were being fired off in the main street, the habitual late-arrival reached into air.
Now, just where the girls kept their transformation pens, wands, or other assorted transformation paraphernalia when not in use was not something that any of the involved really understood. The needed item always seemed to appear in their hands when needed, with the exception Sailor Moon's assorted brooches. The same materialization happened with the rose that Mamoru used to become Tuxedo Mask.
Flicking her hand in mid-air over and over, Mamoru tried to summon her rose. Being accustomed to arriving on the scene when the Senshi were in trouble, she didn't usually need to change right away, but it was incredibly distressing that she couldn't.
Back on the hectic field of battle, Sailor Moon had yet to use her finishing move, as the monster was targeting the majority of it's attacks on her. Dodging another whirlwind, she looked over to the aforementioned alley. A purple-haired figure was looking frantically from the battle to her hand, back and forth.
"Cover for me!" Moon dashed towards the alley, while a Jupiter Oak Evolution roared down onto the winged creature.
Come on, where is it? Come on, come on...
The normally stoic Mamoru was now downright panicking, which, being a new feeling, was only causing further panic. A gloved hand grabbed her arm. "Huh?" She looked down.
"You should get out of here, if you can't change to Tuxedo Mask you're defenseless!"
Sailor Moon was holding onto Mamoru's arm. There was still a height difference between the two, but it was significantly less than it normally was.
"No, I can help!" the neo-girl sputtered.
"Mamo-chan, we're all stronger when we've transformed, you included. But our normal forms don't stand a chance!"
"I-I have to help somehow, though! I just can't find-"
"I don't want anything bad to happen to you. I won't LET anything happen to you." Moon's face was serious, as serious as when she faced any of the darkest enemies they had faced. "Please, just... just stay out of harms way, okay?"
With that, she ran back off into battle.
"But... that's supposed to be my line..." Mamoru murmured. Reaching out to hir fiancée, she gave one final flip of her fingers...
Which closed on a small, metallic object.
Astonishment on her face, Mamoru looked at what she now held in her hand. It was a small, tan pen with gold adornments, including a gold-colored cap, and a small orb enclosed in an oval. A circle with a plus sign was engraved on either side of the orb.
Gripping the pen, she closed her eyes. A phrase drifted through her head. Not a speech-like the ones usually given when she was a he-just... a phrase.
Here goes nothing.
"Earth Power, Make UP!"
(fan points to those who figure out where I got the monster from!)
This is not the end of the Mask... as far as I have planned. We'll see.
CervantesOsis, if you're out there still, you may remember that you asked how "stacked" his girl form was. I hope I have answered your question.
(also updating a small bit in chapter 3 regarding knowledge of modern Earth.)