Sailor Moon Fan Fiction / Ranma 1/2 Fan Fiction / Mahou Sensei Negima! Fan Fiction ❯ In the Shadow of the Moon ❯ Chapter 14 the Greatest Plans ( Chapter 14 )

[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]
one small correction on my notes from the last chapter. Ku is Ku Fei's family name

disclaimer - I don't own Ranma 1/2, Sailor moon, Ruroni Kenshin, or Negima. this work is purely for entertainment and not for profit

Chapter 14 - the Greatest Plans

While the group from Hinode were having their shopping trip. Mu Se successfully went through his eye surgery. Xian Pu had the responsibility of looking out for him. She rediscovered as long as he wasn't mistaking inanimate objects for her or confessing his love, Mu Se actually was fairly enjoyable to be around.

Ku Lon had told them to enjoy a day off today and Mu Se was, in good humor, acting as a translator for her while she went shopping. Xian Pu had for so long simply wanted to return to china with Ranma that she simply had not bothered to improve her language skills. Now that she was going to be attending school here it would be imperative she did. Voulge had proved to be an amazing tutor for written language but Xian Pu still needed to connect word sounds with meanings.

Mu Se had pads holding his eyes closed and was now completely blind and would be for a few days while his eyes healed. Xian Pu considered tricking him into putting on garishly colored clothes while he couldn't see and taking pictures. She decided this would be unforgivably rude to do to the boy since he was trusting her and being polite company, no matter how much he irritated her in the past.

Mu Se for his part was suffering through a shopping trip and experimenting with trying to use the enhanced senses his partner offered without fully powering up. He had met with some success. The presence of the ginzuisho was easy to feel. What had him slightly concerned was that it was very near by. Most likely the princess was in the same shopping district as they. What really had Mu Se on edge was something else

What Mu Se had discovered is that after bonding with Flying Bind some other senses he was certain were his alone had started to emerge. What he felt now was a sense of malice and desire for destruction and it felt like it was getting nearer. To Mu Se it felt like there was a shift or void created in the world moments before the warning of a demon appearance came from his partner.

The alarms on the partners said this was an opponent far beyond their current power level. Ku Lon advised she would be to the shopping district shortly and they would attempt containment as much as possible. Hopefully the senshi had the power to banish or destroy this monster. Mu Se searched all the information Flying Bind had for a more powerful attack to use to drive this monster back, and found information on charge cells. Inquiring of Ku Lon about this, she informed him that there was a way to boost attacks but the offensive skills of his partner were not up to the task.

They found the giant red winged demon smashing storefronts with the Princess and Sailor Mercury trying to stop it. The demon had the shape of a man with wings emerging from its back and a single backwards curving horn coming from its forehead. Ku Lon erected a barrier to keep it contained but it would not last for long if the horned monstrosity turned its attentions to it. Ku Lon gave charged shells to both Mu Se and Xian Pu. They each had what looked like a bullet clip with 5 shells. Mu Se installed the clip on the outer side of his bracelet and Xian Pu put her into the back side of where Voulge's blade was connected to the shaft.

The other members of the inner senshi arrived. They poured all of their magic attacks into the beast but it seemed to ignore them. The ground around the beast began to freeze as all energy was drained from it.

Ami, Sailor Mercury, was unable to get any readings from the creature. it was as though it did not exist. None of her friends most powerful attacks even bothered it. Usagi standing beside her was asking her for ways to attack it but she had no answers. The monster suddenly brushed past the other inners and headed straight for them. shadows emerged in its path and a sudden familiar sensation as she and Usagi were pulled from the beasts path. She heard a call of "shatter strike" and watched what seemed to be hundreds of golden rods fly at the creature and actually cause it to pause.

The chains vanished as they were gently set on the ground near their rescuer. The young man in black robes put his hands together and she could see a blue crystal on his left wrist. for a moment she heard mechanical clicks and words flashed across the crystal, "boost mode, Titan Bind, Engaged". Chains as thick as bridge cables erupted from the ground restraining the demon.

Mu Se called out to the princess. "Princess have all your guardians aim for its horn that is its weakness." Mu Se had no idea how he knew this but he was certain.

Usagi called out to the other senshi. They had already heard and were preparing their attacks. Calls of "Mars Flame Sniper", "Jupiter Oak Evolution", and "Venus Love and Beauty Shock" rang out as their attacks converged on the horn. Where cracks had formed previously from multiple hits from the golden rods now expanded and the horn shattered, the beast screamed.

Mu Se sent to Xian Pu that it should now be vulnerable but a powerful attack would be needed to finish it. Clicks came from Voulge and the blue crystal flashed, "Boost Mode, Plasma Blade, Engaged". The the axe like blade split in half and the handle seemed to pull into the blade. suddenly a blade of pure white fire three times as tall as Xian Pu erupted from the split halves of the blade. Xian Pu smiled wickedly and flew toward the creature. The blade sliced neatly through the creatures body which vanished, taking the unearthly cold with it.

Ami turned to her rescuer. "Who are you?"

The boy bowed to them, "Another day perhaps Lady Mercury." and vanished. Ami looked for the girl that finished the creature, but she had disappeared as well.

Usagi was shaking her head. "We need to get answers from Pluto now."

-----

Mu Se collapsed to the floor of the warehouse. Powering down, he gently placed his hands over the medical patches on his eyes. there seems to have been no damage.

Ku Lon and Xian Pu appear moments later. Ku Lon asks, "Child how did you know where to strike the beast?"

Mu Se shakes his head, "I don't know elder. I just knew it. I also felt the creatures intent before it entered this plane."

Xian Pu stares and Ku Lon nods. "We will use any skill and benefit we can. Trust your instincts in this effort children" Ku Lon advises.

-------

Meioh Setsuna, Sailor Pluto, was near to having a fit. There were always areas of the time stream that were grey and unfocused to her. She had ignored them as long as they did not bear against her plans for Crystal Tokyo. Now entire parts of the planet were becoming shadows to her and the probability of Crystal Tokyo's existence was beginning to slide.

Now she receives a communication from Sailor Neptune through the Deep Aqua Mirror. The princess was demanding to see her. This really was not a good time for her to leave the gates unattended, twice in the past something like this had occurred and precipitated events beyond her control. The destruction of Atlantis and the creation of nemesis. Neither of these situations boded well for the current situation.

Pluto could not go completely against her princess' wishes, so she agreed to meet them at the shrine that evening.

Arriving at the shrine Pluto is just in time to hear Ami tell all of the other senshi, inners and outers, of what she had discovered of a new group of demon hunters.

"The readings the Mercury Computer found during that last fight give more questions than answers. The distortion it created could be detected but I could get no readings on the demon itself. The hunters used no energy I could get a read on but I did get an analysis of their devices. Their equipment reads as being modified technology from the Silver Millennium." Ami finishes.

"Hmmm... rescued twice now Ami, you seem to have found your own Tuxedo Kamen" Minako purrs.

Blushing furiously Ami returns, "Can we please stay on important topics."

Wanting to ask what they are talking about but not wanting to give away her lack of knowledge. Pluto for once simply coughs to get everyone's attention.

Usagi turns on her. "Where have you been? You are aware we have been fighting hordes of demons with no idea of why or where they come from. You said we had no more enemies to face."

Pluto smiles in her way that makes it seem she knows the answers. "I would be more worried about these demon hunters using technology from the Silver Millennium."

Usagi is not going to be put off. "Do you know where these creatures are coming from or what they want?"

Pluto gives a little to regain solid footing. "I fear that these creatures come from areas outside the normal flow of time and I can not detect them. They should not have a bearing on our rebuilding of the Moon Kingdom. If you wish to continue fighting them we have more powerful armaments available."

Usagi nods, "That would be a good start. Where would do we find this equipment?"

Pluto smiles, "There are secured vaults on the moon. We can teleport there to get equipment to give you an edge without danger of too much collateral damage. We can go there now since you have everyone assembled."

Usagi agrees and everyone prepares to teleport to a meeting area Pluto was certain was still secure.

-------------

If Setsuna was concerned before now she was near panic. Several hours had been spent searching the lower security vaults. All had been emptied and by the dust it was done some time ago. Even the ones that had collapsed had been stripped of anything salvageable according to Ami's scans.

Trying not to let her disquiet show Setsuna leads everyone to the higher security vaults to find the same result. Finally reaching the vault only the royal family had access to they find it empty save for a large crystal in the center of the room.

A beam flashes out from the crystal and scans all of the girls entering the room. Words flash across the surface. Moon Princess Serenity confirmed, Princess of Pluto presence confirmed. A hologram of a young girl about the age of twelve with red hair that sticks out like crab appears before them.

Pluto gasps, "Hakubi-sensei what have you done? do you clear all of vaults?"

The girls face breaks into a grin. "Close but not quite Setsuna-san. I did clear all of the vaults on the moon. Call it a salvage operation. However, I am not exactly your Hakubi-sensei" as the statement finishes the image morphs into a woman in her late teens with waist length red hair and green eyes.

Pluto stares, "Who are you?"

The image shrugs, "I am many things. I suppose it no surprise you don't recognize me. I created this responsive A.I. with the form I possessed more than two thousand years after the fall of the moon kingdom. hmm...the chronometer shows that it has been nearly eight thousand years since then. I guess you have been too busy with your schemes of murdering people and destroying lives to obtain your vision. Tell me is that more difficult now that you can't use me as your perfect captive executioner?"

Pluto growls, "Pandra, how did you survive?"

The image grins, "Pandra's body did not survive. How fortunate that the lead scientist you had studying your captive when you fed people to her had a lab so close."

Pluto's eyes widen in shock. "You consumed her and took over her body, you monster."

The image laughs. "Ah yes, I the demonic destroyer of Atlantis. Who begged the queen for no other boon except the chance to find a way to destroy the abomination I had created and was granted exile by the queen to study a way to do just that. I am a monster for taking over the body and mind of a researcher of questionable morals and intent, who helped in your plans to imprison me and use me as a research subject. I admit, I killed a half million people by accident and will regret it for the rest of eternity. This Hakubi-sensei of yours kept detailed recordings of the hundreds of people you made disappear by force feeding them to me while I was kept starved and insentient. This scientist gave her weapons to both sides of the conflict just to make sure that her toys got a good field test. How many millions died in that war Setsuna? Do you have any idea what she was planning when I found her? She was contemplating ways to mop up the remaining elements of the
Moon Kingdom so she could establish her own kingdom unapposed. But I am the monster?"

Setsuna is stunned by this tirade. Usagi had a different feeling. "Pandra is there a way to block teleporting from this room?"

Pandra smiles, "One of the directives of this device's activation was to block Meioh Setsuna from leaving this room since she could only enter with your help highness."

Usagi turns to Setsuna. "Put down your Garnet Rod Sailor Pluto and back away."

Setsuna feeling like a mouse being contemplated by a cat, watched as the other senshi prepared to attack her. Putting her key shaped staff on the ground and slowly backing away from it. "Surely you can't believe this creature?"

Usagi glanced at the image. shrugging it responds, "I have all the records and correspondence exchanged with Sailor Pluto and Queen Beryl. I also have the visual recordings and measurements taken but they are not pleasant to watch."

Usagi indicates for Ami to collect the Garnet Rod. Ami carefully does so and takes it to the other side of the empty cavernous room. looking at Pluto she continues. "I don't know what to believe at the moment, but I know you have not been fully truthful with us in the past. You will now answer my questions."

Setsuna nods apprehensively. "What was the reason the senshi were created before the begining of the Silver Millennium?" Usagi inquires.

Pluto closes her eyes to block a bad memory, "When the queen and the rest of us first arrived in this solar system we were suddenly attacked by monsters. We nearly were destroyed using the energy and mass weapons we had at the time to defeat them. Using the powers of the ginzuisho we discovered some of us, mostly girls, were able to manipulate new forms of energy. Because they took on the forms of elements, we called them elemental energies."

Usagi blinks, "I thought the moon kingdom was the first great civilization of this solar system. You just said we were not from here."

Pluto sighs, "We came from another quadrant of the galaxy. Our sun was about to go supernova when we left. Five million of us came on what is called a generation ship. I was born during the trip, as was the queen, so we never knew any other home but this solar system. The trip took over one hundred earth years from our perspective. traveling near the speed of light as we were I am sure the trip took several thousand years."

"What about being children of the gods?" Usagi quietly asks.

Feeling defeated Pluto returns, "The people of earth at the time were disorganized and superstitious, they believed we were gods or at least their chosen. The use of that rhetoric became so prevalent even many of the nobles came to believe it."

Holding the stone in her hand, Usagi asks,"What is the ginzuisho? it seems you did not discover its power before arriving here."

Pluto shrugs, "Five million people were on that ship. That was about one in a thousand of the population of the world we came from. Many times more than that number chose to try another option to find a new life and new home. The Queen's mother the first Queen Serenity had a crystal created. The life energy and memories of all of those people were placed inside it and its existence was tied to the queen and her blood. Once we arrived in this solar system your mother discovered that the spirits within had become one single spirit that responded to her will and desire to protect. It granted everyone that was born on the ship a long life and access to these new powers, to varied extents. We established colonies around the planets using materials harvested from the solar system. We discovered many of the people that were on earth also could be gifted by the ginzuisho and they joined us. That was the establishment of the moon kingdom."

"What of those who could not be affected by the crystal?"

The hologram interrupts, "Highness, I might be able to answer that better."

With a nod from Usagi the image of Pandra answers, "For those with skills and experience desired by the moon kingdom. Life was relatively good. Others became servants to their near immortal masters and overall were reasonably treated. For those on earth who did not posses skills or training the kingdom desired they were little more than serfs working the lands or at best ignored. There was not an industrial society here before the colony ship arrived but there were several that achieved much using a natural affinity for elemental energies. They did not need heavy machinery or buildings so there were none to find."

"Where did they go?" inquires the princess.

The image sighs, "I fear that was deliberately left out of my knowledge. I do know of several relics they left behind that the kingdom took for their own use. Mostly devices that tapped elemental or life energies for power. The most dangerous one was what was called the 'Gate of Eternity' by the ancients. Using the power of the Ginzuisho Sailor Pluto was given control over it. What little my creator found of the notes of the gate's creators was that it did not live up to their hopes and was sealed to prevent its misuse."

"Wait, first you said you and now you say my creator." Usagi notes.

"I am an artificial intelligence with most of my creators memories up to the point at which I was created. I accepted my mission to guard this place and await for your return highness." the image responds.

"Do you know where your creator is?" this from Pluto.

"No Meioh Setsuna I do not. This was done by intent. I am an archive created to tell the princess of your crimes while the emotion was still raw and fresh in my creators mind." Pandra responds.

Setsuna snarls, "Why don't you tell the princess of your creators crimes then?"

Pandra smiles, "My creator was the child of a kingdom lesser noble and a native mother that was born in the earth city of Atlantis. Atlantis was what remained of the original colony ship. It eventually became unusable in space and was not able to be retrofitted with new parts. They eventually reused everything that was still workable and created a colony for half a million people with it in what is now earth's atlantic ocean. My creator was unable to be touched by the power of the Ginzuisho. He was however able to summon and control spirits of elemental power and manipulate elemental energies that way."

"Your creator was male, but you look female and you referred to your creator as a she." Ami interjects this time.

"True I will explain further in the story." The image replies mildly," My creator was immensely afraid of dying and watched as he and his mother grew older while those around him did not. After his mother died of old age, He became desperate to find a way to live on. He tried to summon a high level demon and make himself immortal that way. He summoned a female demon thinking there would be a better balance. He knew the type of demon he summoned was immortal and could not be killed. He demanded to be granted all her powers. She bonded with his soul and all of those powers were now his but he had no knowledge of how to control them. The firestorm of power killed everyone in Atlantis and the city disappeared from the face of the earth. My creator had tried to gather the souls of his victims to find a way to bring them back to life. When she awoke she was now female and held what you might know of as the black crystal. The sense of malice that flowed from the stone was terrible. She somehow succeeded in turning the crystals energy back on itself and created what history would come to know as Pandora's Box. Which Setsuna later gave the order to force open."

All faces turn to Setsuna. "The demon attacks disappeared about the same time we found a power source similar to the Ginzuisho. We thought that it had to be of similar intent." she weakly replies.

Pandra continues once her audience turns their attention back to her. "She is correct in that the demons stopped attacking because of the dark crystal's creation. The demons are drawn then as now to the concentrated spirit energy of both crystals. They differ entirely in intent. The ginzuisho was created with the knowledge of those involved. they accepted the eventual outcome and held no animosity towards others. Because it was linked with the queen it served her and her line first. Demons could only gain that power by taking it directly from the queen. The dark crystal on the other hand was an accident and the rage of those trapped turned against anything that lived. The demons could approach the crystal directly but due to the field there was no escape once inside and for hundreds of years more and more demons intent on destruction became part of it. My creator tried to warn people away from the crystal, resorting to driving them away when they would not be dissuaded by words. Eventually the kingdom sent a large enough force that my creator was overwhelmed and captured. Before the queen she pleaded for only the chance to find a way to destroy the crystal. The queen had ordered her to be taken to a abandoned research station near the sun where no human could survive. Instead Hakubi-sensei and Pluto plotted to seal my creator in catacombs under the palace so they could study her. A containment vessel was delivered to the research station. The bomb it contained detonated less than a year later and the pieces fell into the sun."

Setsuna with her armor could not feel the temperature of the room, but could swear the temperature of the room dropped from the gazes directed at her from the other senshi.

Pandra continues, "I have already mentioned what use my creator was put to on the moon, so let me tell you about the creation of Nemesis. No force that could be brought to bear against the shield on earth could break it. eventually it and a large chunk of rock it was tied to were taken within the orbit of mercury around the sun and a large amount of solar energy and high energy plasma were concentrated on it. the shield eventually faltered. All ships people and debris within a thousand kilometer radius were pulled in and became the heart of what you called the planet Nemesis. There was no way to but the genie back in the bottle as it were. The dark desires of the spirit of the crystal acted on all who came near it. That was the beginning of the war that lead to the end of the Silver Millennium. The planetoid was eventually propelled to the outer rim of the solar system where it kept collecting space debris and drawing more demons to it. That you are alive I can only hope you found a way to destroy it."

Ami answers, "We did succeed in destroying it. Others tried to use its power to destroy us in the past and it was annihilated by a time paradox."

"That is basically the end of my story." concludes Pandra.

Usagi turns to Setsuna. "I now have answers to all of my questions but one Setsuna. What is the true cost of the creation of Crystal Tokyo?"

Setsuna pales, "I never could find the cause but within the next ten years the planet will be blanketed in ice. Of the population of six billion people only six hundred thousand are able to survive either through stasis or simple survival on the earth's surface. after almost a millennium the ice retreats and the survivors rally around the princess and that is when Crystal Tokyo is established."

Usagi is livid, "You knew ninety nine percent of all the people were going to die and you failed to tell us?"

Setsuna replies, "I never knew the cause. I could only find a method to preserve as many people us included as I could."

Pandra interrupts, "Princess I am not sure of the current situation but I may know a reason. If you did succeed in destroying the dark crystal are you now facing demon attacks?"

"Yes we are and they are getting worse. That is why we came here to get better equipment." Usagi affirms.

"Then I can tell you what my creator feared at the time I was created." Pandra says with a nod. "Before the dark crystal was created, the senshi were well trained and well armed. They were able to defeat the demons with efficiency, but not without casualty. My creator discovered that the Ginzuisho had disappeared with you and the other senshi and felt the time vortex the queen used. My creator was worried that you would not have the skills necessary to face these creatures if the dark crystal was destroyed. She took all of the technology she could find in these vaults to try and develop weapons that could be used by those willing to face the demons to destroy them."

Ami asks, "Is there a way to stop the attacks?"

Pandra shakes her head, "The Ginzuisho is like a beacon drawing them. My creator tried to find Nemesis to destroy it after she freed herself but it was cloaked from everything. She hoped to find a way to cloak the Ginzuisho similarly but I don't know if she succeeded. If any allies have appeared to help you fight, likely she is helping them. They might be able to help you find her."

Usagi looks towards Setsuna. Setsuna feels her blood chill. "Well Sailor Pluto you seem to enjoy imprisoning people against the orders of the throne. Pandra is there a place here that can suitably accommodate Setsuna without access to her powers."

Pandra nods, "The living quarters of Hakubi-sensei are still in working order and shielded to prevent teleportation in or out. I can download all of my files to the Mercury Computer and Sailor Mercury can direct your teleportation to a bay outside the containment field. the supplies there are sufficient for several thousand years."

Usagi asks, "You don't wish to join us?"

Pandra shakes her head, "No your highness, My creator made me for this mission. She had come to accept it is her fate to never rest. She created me in the hope that once my mission finished some small part of her would know peace."

The image drops to her knees, "Please your highness let me rest, That is all I ask."

Usagi quietly replies, "I will, but how do we do that?"

"Once the data is downloaded from my memory core this crystal will cease to function." Pandra replies.

Usagi nods, "But if your a machine how can that be coming to rest?"

Pandra smiles sadly, "The crystal is a living computer created from the results of Hakubi-sensei's work. I am a small piece of my creators spirit bound to it and I have been waiting here for eight thousand years."

Usagi nods to Ami who approaches the crystal and finds a transfer request initiated. Usagi approaches the hologram and kneels in front of her. Ami indicates the transfer is nearly complete.

Usagi looks into Pandra's eyes and as the crystal begins to darken says, "You and your creator are forgiven Pandra, rest well."

The crystal darkens and the image vanishes. Standing Usagi wipes tears from her eyes and looks to Setsuna.

Usagi does not give Setsuna a chance to further comment. "I am sure you wish to comment on how I can believe or forgive such a being as Pandra. She understood the nature of the crimes she committed and sought to make amends for them. You would not admit what you have done until forced and I am certain you do not feel remorse. I hear-by strip you of your position as guardian of time and sentence you to live out the rest of your life in the prison you thought was good enough for others."

The other senshi take an unresisting Setsuna in hand and quickly move to the location found in the new files. Setsuna is made to power down within the habitat and surrender her heshin pen. The doors of the airlock are then sealed from the outside. Setsuna finds the computer console is still working but the only files are the recordings of victims being fed to Pandra in the past.

-------------------------

That evening Ku Lon contacts her friend Mas Cre to find out the status of the new warriors arrival using a aqua colored crystal.

"We will arrive ahead of schedule, We will be in Tokyo in two days time." The equally ancient elder tells Ku Lon.

Ku Lon realizes something is wrong, "What are you not telling me?"

Chuckling Mas Cre replies, "Ah my friend the council will be the death of us I am afraid. The three males were no difficulty. Of the volunteers I had from our warriors I finally had to demand three be sent with me as an honor guard. No others will be joining us."

Ku Lon sighs, "We will stand and fight with what we have. I do not believe the Lady is only using us in this plan."

---------------------------
After leaving the restaurant Kasumi and Tofu-sensei make plans for another date at the end of the week. Tofu is dropped of at his apartment and the group returns to the Hinode shrine. The children head of to study and sleep. Kasumi seems to be nearly floating along the floor.

Noriko and Nodoka are left by themselves in the common room. After fetching some tea Noriko joins Nodoka watching the evening news.

"I do believe Tofu's term with that clinic is about to come up. I might have to recommend him for a research position with the medical section of the University of Mahora. What do you think No-chan." Noriko opens.

Nodoka grins conspiratorially, "Oh I do believe both of them would like that Obaa-san"

After a bit more planning about how to help their budding lovers the two older women retire for the night.

Training the next morning starts normally but after everyone breaks off into their own groups Ranma suddenly finds himself under attack and on the defensive.

He is being pressed by a blond haired, violet eyed man slightly older and slightly shorter than himself. The mans hair is held back in a ponytail that flows down his back and is dressed in a dark purple close fitting gi. In appearance he is slightly more rugged but could almost give Konatsu a challenge on looks.

Ranma puts everything he can into trying to knock the man away but soon finds himself on his back with the man grinning down at him.

The man says, "My boy, I have always been impressed by what you have learned from others and that fat fool but now it is time to start your real training."

Ranma barely contains his shock, "Happosai"

notes:

Garnet Rod - Pluto's key shaped weapon which has her talisman the garnet orb on its top

Heshin pen - pen shaped pocket sized wand the sailor scouts use to transform.

Now we begin to explore the undiscovered country. Please join me for the ride.

Chapter 13
Chapter 15
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