"Are you sure there's no way you can stay longer?" Serena asked Hotaru and Trista sadly, as they had just transformed into their Sailor state.
Hotaru smiled gently and shook her head, "We will return when we are needed, Princess. Until then, please be safe." And, with a gentle nod, Sailor Pluto summoned a portal to the Gates of Time and disappeared back to the future with Sailor Saturn.
"Right, everyone clear on what they need to do?" Darien confirmed with the team one last time as they gathered around the entrance of the lookout. Those paying attention nodded, whilst their partners seemed to be readying their flying gear. Darien pulled out his capsuled hover car and climbed in, with Serena at his heels. The teams exchanged a final nod and were on their way soon enough.
"Do you really think these Dragon Balls will work like they say they will?" Michelle questioned Amara gently, once they were in the privacy of her hover car and on their way to Capsule Corporation. The rest of the team following shortly behind them.
"If they've really been using them for however long they said they have, then I have no doubt in my mind they'll work. But that also makes me think they're probably really dangerous. They might be as powerful as the Silver Crystal." Amara voiced, unconsciously increasing the speed of her vehicle.
Michelle's eyes widened and she looked at her partner in surprise, "You can't truly think that, can you? As far as we know, there is nothing in this universe as powerful as the Silver Crystal."
"Yes, and if you account for the Golden Crystal then they can be believed to be undefeatable." Amara agreed, but then scowled darkly. "But, until recently, we didn't know these Dragon Balls even existed. The Saiyan's were believed to be dead and these threats they speak of having battled over time are monsters that we should have been fighting as Sailor Scouts." Her grip on the steering wheel tightened and her speed began to increase further.
Michelle gently placed a hand over Amara's and squeezed her in comfort. "We shouldn't be angry at them for existing, Amara, nor for fighting our battles. We should be glad for their help, their strength and their support. We can trust them and we're all fighting for the same cause. They're here protecting the planet just as much as we are." She tried to explain, to comfort her partner and make her understand.
"Then why do I feel so uneasy about what's coming?" Amara questioned darkly.
For this, Michelle had no words of comfort. She too felt the restlessness in the oceans.
Something was going to happen. Something big.
But the question was, are they ready for it?
Upon arriving at Capsule Corporation, Darien had immediately explained their situation to Bulma. She had already been partially aware and wasted no time at all in handing over her remaining two Dragon Radar's.
"It'll take a day or two to make the other 3." She'd confirmed, "But those two should at least get you started." She'd smiled.
"Brilliant!" Darien had smiled in response, charming Bulma with his handsome face. "Now, the other thing we're going to have to ask is if we can possibly borrow your lab?"
Bulma blinked. "Uh, sure. But, what for?"
"We need to design a system to locate Gohan on Nikota. We don't know how the dark energy of that planet will affect our magic, so we need a backup." Darien admitted and Bulma nodded, a look of determination crossing her face.
"Well, I am a genius after all. I'm honoured that you came to me!" she giggled and blushed. "It's so good to be back in action!" she cheered.
The Scouts seemed to blink and look at each other in surprise.
"But, wait," Serena blurted, "I thought Amy and Zoic-" she began, but Rei covered her mouth as soon as she could.
"What Serena means is, Amy and Zoicite are going to help you any way they can with everything they know about the mission." Mina covered quickly, while Lita attempted to assist Rei in restraining Serena. "Isn't that right, guys?" Mina quickly emphasised through gritted teeth and looked at Amy for backup.
She bluenette laughed nervously, "Of course! We can't leave Bulma in the dark about this whole thing." She cleared her throat awkwardly and laughed again.
"Guys, Serena's face is turning blue." Mina commented quietly, and Rei and Lita quickly released their princess with a nervous laugh.
Serena gasped for air and immediately began a squeal and screech attack on Rei and Lita, arguing with them for grabbing her so horribly. The group seemed to cherish these last few moments of undisturbed peace and hilarity, and didn't notice as two of their more powerful Scouts quietly left, with a Dragon Radar in hand.
"There doesn't seem to be one too far from here." Michelle confirmed, clicking the Dragon Radar into life. "About 150 miles northeast of here."
"That's not too bad." Amara smirked as she turned her hover car northeast, following Michelle's instructions. "I was expecting to have to travel halfway around the world."
Michelle smiled, "Well, if there are any that far, at least we won't be the ones collecting them. I wonder if it'll be heavily guarded." She added thoughtfully.
"What? Does that thing not tell you if it's dangerous or not?" Amara questioned, glancing at the Radar. Michelle shook her head in response.
"No, the technology seems quite dated. It appears to show the general whereabouts, but doesn't provide an exact location." Michelle confirmed.
"Well, it appears we've got a bit of hunting to do when we get there." Amara said with a smile. So far, she was relaxed and optimistic about this hunt.
Sailor Uranus and Sailor Neptune leapt from cliff to cliff, following the signal of the Dragon Radar. The close nit cliff faces meant it was too dangerous for Amara's precious hover car. The pair agreed to transform into Sailor Scouts and continue on foot, with the car safely re-capsuled.
"THERE! I think I see it!" Uranus suddenly announced, her sharp azure eyes travelling ahead of Neptune's. She pointed to a twinkling spot, only just visible at the river bed below them.
Sailor Neptune looked away from the Dragon Radar and squinted in the direction that her partner pointed in. In the time it took her to register the twinkling spot, she gasped and felt a tug at her left hand. A small weight suddenly disappeared and an evil snickering began to echo around them.
"Why, thank you my dears. This will be most useful." Smirked a vile looking creature, dressed in seductive black leather that hardly concealed her purple tinted physique.
Immediately, Sailor Neptune and Sailor Uranus took a fighting stance and glared at their enemy.
"She's different." Hissed Neptune, "There are no others with her. And she's actually speaking to us."
"Yes, it looks like they're evolving faster than we thought." Uranus whispered in response, praying not to be heard. "We need to keep her away from the Dragon Ball and destroy the Radar if we can."
Neptune nodded, not daring to exchange more words than that. They had a plan and they both knew what their roles were now. A fight was not something that they feared.
"How do you work this thing?" screeched the youma, completely ignoring the conversation that just occurred. She turned the Dragon Radar over in her hand repeatedly, attempting to understand it. But it was either too simple or too advanced for her understanding, as a demonic power. Perhaps technology wasn't something they naturally comprehended?
Sailor Uranus snorted and leapt to a nearby cliff quickly. "Typical. Nikiko would send out her youma to fight, and not bother to worry about developing their intelligence."
"HOW DARE YOU! I'm plenty intelligent!" screeched the youma, glaring fiercely at Sailor Uranus.
"If you were, you'd know how to use an age-old Dragon Radar!" mocked Uranus, laughing at the youma's expense.
The youma growled and began to pulsate with energy. With a loud battle cry, she summoned her powers and sent a blast of sonic waves in the direction of the powerful sailor solider.
Sailor Uranus immediately leapt out of the way and continued to leap from cliff to cliff, further and further away from the river in an attempt to lead the youma as far from the Dragon Ball as she could.
She gasped and was suddenly knocked off balance when she fell in line with a sonic blast. "Rats!" she hissed as she struggled to her feet once more, "She's faster than I thought." A smirk slowly pasted its way onto her face. It was time for Sailor Uranus to truly test the limits of her training.
Summoning her space sword, she took a steady fighting stance with an eager smirk pasted across her face. A light orange glow began to surround her as she focused her magic and channelled it into her sword.
"You've left yourself wide open dearie." Cackled the youma, sending another sonic wave directly at her.
Within the blink of an eye, Sailor Uranus seemed to have disappeared from her original position on the cliff. The youma had just enough time to sense her location and prepare a defensive stance before she was hit with a powerful kick from the furious Soldier of the Sky. The creature attempted to retaliate, but the glowing magic that flowed through the veins of Sailor Uranus was more than anticipated. The Scout was moving too fast and it was becoming almost impossible to even defend against her blows.
Soon enough, Sailor Uranus was attacking the youma with a surprising amount of ease. She smirked to herself, and hardly realised she was slowing down.
But the youma noticed.
With a smirk, the demon took the shot and managed to grab a hold of Sailor Uranus' neck. She began to cackle and squeeze, enjoying the panic and choking sounds that struggled to escape the dying Sailor Scout.
Sailor Uranus desperately clawed at the hand that restrained her. The monster had even extended its arms so that she could no longer kick her either. Uranus could feel the grip on her sword weakening. With all the will she could muster, she gripped her sword tightly and swung.
An ear-piercing scream echoed throughout the mountainside, as the youma collapsed. Desperately tending to the remains of her decapitated arm. Uranus fell to her knees, coughing and gasping for breath as the limp, lifeless hand released her and fell to the floor.
"YOU'LL PAY FOR THIS!" screamed the youma and began a series of uncoordinated and mindless sonic blasts. Sailor Uranus was barely able to escape each blast before having to dive out of the way of the one that followed.
If this monster wasn't stopped soon, she'd destroy the entire mountain. Uranus gripped her space sword and felt the last of her magical energy transfer into the weapon. Alone, this youma would take a lot of power to destroy and she needed to focus her energy with all her might.
Sailor Neptune saw her chance and dived into the depths of the river, searching desperately for that sparkling shine of the Dragon Ball. She prayed with all her might that she could discover it quickly, so as to aid Sailor Uranus before it was too late. This youma was a lot stronger than they expected, and she knew that. But Uranus was definitely going to take that upon herself as a personal challenge.
There was a twinkle to her left and, buried amongst the weeds and sands of the crystal clear river, the Dragon Ball shone. With it in hand, Sailor Neptune swam to the surface and gasped for breath. Wiping the water out of her eyes, she took a moment to examine the Dragon Ball. It was a tiny thing, compared to what she was expecting; but it definitely matched the description: orange, spherical and with a number of red stars in the middle. It was quite beautiful, the way it glimmered in the sunlight.
Neptune gasped in surprise when a blur of speed grasped the Dragon Ball before she could.
"Well, looks like you've been doing the hard work for me." Smirked the dangerous voice of Son Gohan. Neptune glared and leapt out of the water and onto the shore side.
Without even a blink of his eye, Gohan summoned another youma to battle Neptune. This creature was similar to its partner, but its skin was tinted a gruesome green. It cackled shrilly at Neptune.
"Prepare to die my dear!" it screeched.
"Have fun!" smirked Gohan, summoning a portal and about to disappear with the Dragon Ball in hand.
"NO!" shouted a voice and Gohan yelped in painful surprise. Blood splattered from his hand and the Dragon Ball fell to the floor. Sailor Uranus had thrown her space sword in a desperate attempt to stop Gohan from leaving with the Dragon Ball.
Well, it worked.
The eyes of the two Scouts widened as Gohan glared at them. Flames seemed to erupt in his eyes and his body began to glow with power. But, before either of the Scouts could make a move, Gohan released a powerful cry of anger and turned to the youma he'd just summoned.
The youma looked just as surprised as the two Outer Scouts and, within moments, was screaming and crying in pain before turning to dust. Gohan had destroyed it with a single glance. He continued to breathe heavily, furiously, and his eyes turned to the Scouts. They took a defensive stance, ready to flee or to fight, they weren't sure yet. But, with another powerful yell, Gohan grabbed his head and forced himself into the portal he'd summoned.
Leaving the Dragon Ball behind.
A/N: THERE! A new chapter posted, just like I promised! I have no idea how regular I'll be making these updates, but I'll try my best! Thank you so SO much for all the support while I've been away everyone! It's been a really tough year (emotionally as well as academically) so it's really nice to know that people still care about updates even after so long without them! :') I know this chapter isn't as long as I usually make them, but I kindof doubt they'll be megga long now. I'm quite close to the end of this series, not sure how much longer exactly, but we're close now! Hope you enjoyed it! :)