Sailor Moon Fan Fiction ❯ All's Fair in Love and War ❯ Captive ( Chapter 35 )
[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]
Chapter 35It was cold. Everything seemed cold. The air, the sheets, the mattress…there was no warmth in the room, which came as a surprise to Selenity as she woke from her slumber. She felt something in her arms, and realized right away that it was a child, her daughter, nestled against her body. Wait, when had she gone to sleep? The last thing that she remembered was walking through Helen's gardens with Serenity in her arms, followed closely by two guards, then…..nothing. She was drawing a complete blank. Her eyes snapped open and she let out a startled gasp. She was definitely not in her chambers on the Earth or on the Moon.
Careful as to not wake Serenity, Selenity sat up and surveyed her surroundings. The room was fairly small, though spacious enough to move around in. Everything was simple, though nothing was shabby. No rich decorations, but no dirt either. The room was clean, simple, and comfortable, even if it was very cold. Selenity tucked as much of the blanket on the bed around Serenity as she could before she stood and walked around the room. Upon glancing out the small windows she saw why it was so cold. Outside the unfamiliar landscape was covered in snow, the white substance blanketing everything. The land was bleak and barren, no signs of warmth anywhere. What planet would have snow?
Selenity walked away from the window. There was no chance of getting out there, since they were three floors up, and even if they could get out, Selenity knew they would freeze to death before they got far. She didn't even know who had brought her here, or why. She had a strong hunch that it was the Dark Queen, but how could she have gotten anyone onto the Earth unnoticed, and then managed to take her off the earth? It didn't make sense.
The worried Queen walked over to the door and tried the door handle. It was locked. Not that it surprised her, she had been expecting that it would be locked. She rapped her knuckles gently on the wood, quietly enough not to wake her daughter, strongly enough so that it would be heard by anyone outside.
There was nothing but silence.
Selenity walked back to the bed and sat down. The bundle of blankets began to move and Selenity looked down at her waking daughter. Even in the confused and worried state she was in, she smiled as Serenity opened her eyes.
"Good morning sunshine," Selenity whispered as she picked Serenity up, cuddling the tiny princess to her chest. Serenity gave a small whimper as her stomach growled, causing Selenity to laugh. "Hungry are you?" she asked. "You're always hungry." She brought Serenity down to her lap and wrapped the blanket around her shoulders. One thing that she had insisted upon after Serenity's birth was that she would feed her. She would not find a wet-nurse for her daughter.
As Serenity suckled greedily, Selenity shivered. It was a little from the chilly air hitting her newly exposed flesh, but more due to the fact that she was beginning to really worry about where they were. She had the Crystal with her still, but she couldn't use it to help them. She would have to rely on any form of kindness her captors had and Kino's determination to get her out of the predicament.
Where are we, she thought as she glanced towards the window. And who can help us?.
"So you have her?" Mars inquired, wrapping the cloak tightly around his shoulders. The planet was too cold for his liking, and he would have been happier if they could have gone to his home planet where things were toasty warm.
The Dark Queen's lips rose into a smirk. "Of course," she replied, toying with the pendant hanging from her neck. "Her and the child."
Mars nodded. The two of them were sitting in a small library with a small fire crackling in the hearth. The wood was a luxury, but even it did little to provide the room with much warmth. My husband was a fool to go after this planet for so long, Aminiha thought to herself. It was a small thing, a toy her husband had won about three years before his death. Although I must say it is a useful place to have now, she admitted to herself. She had been living on the small plant from the time the War against the Moon began. It was close enough that she could keep an eye on things, but far enough away so that she was relatively safe, as well as undetected.
"So, shall I send for her if she has woken up yet?" Aminiha asked as Mars attempted to warm his hands by blowing on them. He nodded, and Aminiha sent two guard to go and escort the Moon Queen to them.
"We have agreed then? We keep her and the child for three weeks before letting Kinotsu know we have them, then wait another two weeks until we lure him?" Mars asked, although he knew the answer already.
Aminiha nodded, and clasped her hands on her lap. "Yes. We shall keep the two here, on this planet, until we are ready to lure the Moon King. I think that by that time he will be worried enough to do anything to get his wife and child back."
Mars nodded in agreement. "Once we have him vulnerable, I will challenge him. I don't think he will be able to best me with the sword, and I wish to win Selenity the honourable way. She and her daughter will not be harmed."
The Dark Queen smirked. "Of course not. Only Kino will be hurt."
"Good," Mars said as he gave up trying to warm his hands. It was simply no use. He would have to go back to his home planet to warm up.
"Damn it, where the hell is she!" Kino slammed his fist down on the table so hard it made everyone in the room jump. They had been searching for Selenity and Serenity for a week now, and there was no trace of them.
Paris placed his hand gently on Kino's shoulder. "Be patient Kino, we'll find them."
Kino glared at him. "It's difficult to be patient if you don't even know if your wife and child are alive," he remarked coldly.
Paris sighed and looked back down at the maps that they were scouring. It was very difficult to wage a war when one man was so intent on finding his family. It was next to impossible to get Kino to do anything but worry and search. Too difficult, and their side was suffering for it. Jupiter was doing a fairly good job of keeping an eye on Kino's forces, but even he could do only so much. Mercury had come a few days before with two of his generals to give a helping hand, which was very useful. Venus had come as well, only she had gone strait to the earth to comfort Helen, who was beside herself with worry and guilt.
Kino ran a hand through his hair and gave a frustrated sigh. "I'll be back in a while," he muttered as he turned and strode out of the room. Malachite and Jupiter exchanged worried glances as Mercury bowed his head to look at the table, resting his hands on the smooth surface.
"That man needs help," Mercury murmured. "He needs to find her alive."
Jupiter looked sadly at Mercury, then in the direction that Kino had left in. "I'm going to go talk to him," he said, and walked after his friend. He soon caught up with him and the two walked in silence until they reached a secluded balcony overlooking the gardens. Kino leaned his elbows on the marble railing and stared out into the flowers. There were still a few girls and elder gardeners looking after the area, but not nearly enough to keep it completely perfect.
Kino sighed. "I need to find her," he said in a choked voice. "She's my life."
Jupiter leaned on the railing next to Kino. "Then you should know that she is alive. If she's your life, you would be dead if she was."
Kino snorted. "That's not too comforting."
Jupiter's jaw clenched. "It's all the comfort I can give you right now, Kino. I followed you to beseech you to come back to the war. We can't afford to have anyone not paying attention to it. Your troops, as obedient as they are to me, need you to command them."
Kino snorted. "There's no point for me in it anymore, not if my wife and daughter are not safe."
"What about your people? What about our families, or what's left of them?" Jupiter snapped, his temper rising.
Kino glanced at him, then looked up at the sky. "I know you've lost much, Jupiter, and I do feel bad. But I just can't lose them."
"General Yokiro and General Malachite are doing everything in their power to find her," Jupiter said coolly, "and for now that will have to be enough for you. Or do you wish for others to lose what you have lost? Don't you think that Paris is in fear of his wife being taken as well, and his son? The rest of us may have lost husbands and wives," Jupiter paused slightly, his voice cracking, "as well as children. However, we don't want that to happen to anyone else. That's why we fight.
Kino brought his gaze back down to his hands. "I love them," he murmured, "I can't just give up on them."
Jupiter placed a hand on Kino's shoulder, causing the tired King to look at him. "Kino, I loved Hera more than my own life, more than the lives of my people…but I still fight. I thought my heart would burst with pride each time I saw my sons." His eyes glazed over with tears, but he refused to let them fall. "Now all I have left is Lita, and it's killing me just thinking about the fact that the Dark Queen could take her from me too. Kino, don't let her do that. Mercury still has Ami, Venus still has Mina, and Paris is lucky enough to still have Helen and Endymion. Think of all the lives that have already been sacrificed, and consider if you want to have all those sacrifices be in vain."
Kino let out a shaky breath. "I would do almost anything to get them back," he whispered.
"I would do almost anything to get Hera, Troy, and Crin back. I can't. You can though. You still have a chance of getting them back. I don't think any of us doubt that Queen Aminiha has them, but you have to fight her to get them back. Fight for what there still is. Don't do the impossible and try to search the entire universe for them, it's impossible to find them that way. Think about it, if they are still alive, then chances are Aminiha has something planned she'll try to use them against you somehow. Wait for that, then you'll know where they are."
Kino nodded slowly. "I guess…I still can't give up though. I'll come back to the War Hall, but I warn you that I won't give up my search either."
"I can't ask any more of you I suppose," Jupiter replied a little sullenly. "I beg you to not give up though. Malachite and Yokiro are good, you know that. They'll find her and Serenity if they are to be found. Believe me, I don't want you to go through what I did."
Kino looked up at Jupiter, understanding his pain fully now. Both men had their eyes glazed with tears, but neither let them fall. They had an understanding now, and Kino would try his best not to disappoint Jupiter. He had already lost too much. For now, though, they just contented themselves with looking out into the gardens, before returning to the rest of the men.
It had been a two weeks now. Two weeks she had spent pacing the tiny god forsaken room. It felt tiny now, since she and Serenity were almost never allowed out. It had been two week since she had met her captors, although in truth it had not surprised her in the least when she found out who they were. Who else would have gone through all the trouble in a time when it was knows she would be protected more than ever.
Still, it hadn't been very comforting to have her suspicions confirmed. Aminiha had looked so smug about the fact that she was in her grasp now, and Mars didn't look any more humble than the Dark Queen. Both were happy they had managed to capture her, and neither one of them was hiding that pleasure. Selenity knew that she had to get away though, she had to get herself and Serenity back to the Moon before Aminiha decided to use her against Kino.
Even though so many lived were at stake, the blasted Silver Crystal still wouldn't work for her. At first, Selenity had been a bit apprehensive at trying to use it, since she didn't know if Aminiha would be able to detect the power. Still, Selenity knew she had to try, but it was all for naught.
There had been one thing that had surprised her about the entire ordeal though. The day after she had met with Mars and Aminiha, Mars had to return to his own planet. That, of course, was not what had surprised Selenity. Rather, it was the fact that he had come to her room and offered to take Serenity with him to his home. At first Selenity felt like laughing, laughing at the thought that Mars would actually think she would hand her daughter over to him willingly.
"She'll be warm there," he had said before she cold respond though, "and I have a staff looking after Rei already. They would have no problem looking after Serenity as well." Selenity hadn't laughed, but she did give Mars a and-you-really-think-I-trust-you look. He had sighed and shrugged his shoulders. "I know that you have no reason to trust me, Selenity, but believe me when I tell you that no harm will come to you or your daughter. I have a child of my own, and I know what it's like to worry about her. If you let her come with me she will not be harmed, and neither will you."
Selenity was very much tempted on one hand to comply and allow Serenity to go with Mars. She had spent the better part of each day and night trying to keep the little princess warm, cuddling her and swamping her with every blanket and covering in the room, giving her most of her broth when she was brought soup…it was still too cold though. Aminiha and Mars had been humane enough to provide the two with clothing that would keep them warm, but it just wasn't enough.
In the end, she had decided not to hand Serenity over. No matter how good Mars' intentions were, she just didn't want to be parted from her daughter. It would turn against her, one way or another. Besides, if someone did find out that she was on this frozen planet and came to rescue her, she didn't want to have Serenity elsewhere, since it would probably mean she wouldn't get her back easily. No, Serenity was not going anywhere.
So, for two weeks they had remained together in the small room, braving the cold and wishing for rescue. Selenity made sure that when Serenity wasn't sleeping she was occupied, one way or another. Playing little games, singing songs, reciting rhymes…anything to make sure the princess felt safe. Selenity didn't feel safe though. When Mars had been there, she at least felt secure that nothing would happen to her or Serenity. Being stuck on the planet alone with Aminiha though was very brutal on her nerves. Mars would not hurt them, but there was no guarantee with Aminiha. Each day fear gripped Selenity's heart, that the Queen would come and do something to her, or worse yet, to Serenity.
She was worried, she would not deny that. Each night she lay awake as Serenity slept at her side, staring up at the ceiling. Her heart would start to hammer inside her chest for no apparent reason, other than anxiety. She would then hold Serenity closer, as though not doing so would cause them to be separated. Oh Kino, she thought each night, help us. Please help us.
And so it went, for two weeks.
"Any news?" Kino asked, but all he received was a sad shake of Artemis' head.
"Not yet," he replied sullenly, and watched as Kino ran his fingers through his already tousled hair. There was a weeks worth of beard on his face, and his hair was very unkempt, and Artemis was just glad that the King was at least still bathing.
Three weeks had passed since the Queen and Princess had been kidnapped from the earth, and each passing day only made things worse. Artemis knew that both Yokiro and Malachite were working tirelessly on finding Kino's wife and daughter, but they had been able to turn up very little. Thus far the only bit of information that they had been able to recover was that the kidnapper had been aided by some sort of dark power, and that caused great concern among all the planets. It was no secret that they all though the Dark Queen was behind the kidnapping, but the knowledge that she was using dark powers upset everyone. It meant she had a source, a very large, powerful, and dangerous source to tap into for energy.
Kino rubbed his tired eyes with the back of his hand. There were dark circles under them, telling Artemis tales of many sleepless nights. "I have a meeting I need to go to with Uranus. He arrived a few hours ago and Jupiter called a meeting," Kino mumbled. Artemis nodded and laid a hand on his Kings shoulder. Kino looked at him.
"We'll find her," he said gently, and received the slightest nod from Kino.
"I sure hope so, Artemis," the weary King replied, and with that he left the room he used to share with his wife and went to the war hall. For her own sake, I hope Aminiha hasn't hurt or killed the Queen and Princess, Artemis thought to himself as he returned to sorting the papers Kino had left on the desk.
A soft knock on the door caused his head to snap up. "Enter," he called, hoping that it would be Yokiro or Malachite with good news. It was neither of the two generals, but Artemis was nevertheless happy to see Luna walk through the door.
"Are you busy?" she asked as she stepped into the chamber. Artemis shook his head and motioned for her to close the door behind her. She did, and then walked over to him. "Any news yet?" she asked softly.
Artemis couldn't help but chuckle a little. "You're starting to sound like Kino," he murmured as he wrapped his arms around the woman. She sighed as she rested her head against his chest. Such tender moments were rare between them, and she wished to savour this one.
"I'm just worried," she replied. "It's been three weeks, I would have though that General Malachite and General Yokiro would have uncovered something by now."
Artemis rested his chin on her head. "Well, maybe it's a good sign that they haven't. If the Dark Queen wanted them to hurt them, she would have made sure Kino knew about it. She has something up her sleeve, I can feel it."
"I suppose you're right," Luna said as she pulled her head away from his chest. "I hope they do find something soon though. Kinotsu is going to kill himself otherwise."
Artemis nodded as he released Luna and went back to sorting. "I know. I'm worried about him. He needs some sleep, and he's not going to get that until-" Artemis' words were cut off by a banging on the door. Both he and Luna turned to look at the door. "Enter," Artemis called, his heart leaping into his throat when the doors swung open and both Malachite and Yokiro strode in.
"Where is King Kinotsu," Malachite asked, his words sharp and demanding fast answers.
"So you want me to position my men here? Wouldn't that still leave this area here too open?" Uranus, Kino, Jupiter, Paris, and Mercury were all leaning over a series of maps, moving soldiers from one end of the galaxy to the next, or so it seemed. Kino had a headache, and both Jupiter and Paris were not much better off.
Mercury looked at Uranus who had just spoken. "She wouldn't put any of her legions there because if we found out, we could surround her too quickly. She won't risk that."
Uranus rubbed his chin thoughtfully. "I suppose, but wouldn't it be more strategic to place them here? They could slowly inch around the next legion she sends in, and if they move fast enough they could trap them between themselves as well as Jupiter's armies located here." He pointed to a spot on the map where Jupiter had moved some recruits only the week before.
"I suppose that could work too, but what if she was to come from here?" Jupiter pointed to another section of the map, and Uranus nodded.
"You're right, but could Paris perhaps spare about, oh, twenty five hundred men to block off that area? That way she would be forced to come around here, and-"
Kino was not paying as much attention as he should have been. He knew his eyes looked glazed over, since he had not slept in nearly four nights. He caught perhaps and hour here and there, but that was it. He was still more or less following along with the conversation though, and nodded along every so often. He knew the doors had opened and someone had walked in, but his mind was on the map. If he could move eight hundred of his men here, and Mercury sent his fifth squadron there, then perhaps they could…"We've found them,"…move Jupiter's second legion around to that area and if Aminiha came from the south then…
"Kino?" Kino's thoughts were interrupted when Jupiter's hand shook his shoulder. He looked up from the map up into the concerned eyes of his friend. "Are you alright?" Jupiter asked, keeping his hand on Kino's shoulder.
"Huh, yes, I'm fine. I was just thinking that if we moved about eight hundred of my men…" his sentence trailed off as he noticed Yokiro, Malachite, and Artemis standing behind Jupiter.
"Did you hear what they said?" Jupiter asked, watching Kino's eyes dart form the newcomers behind him, then back to himself. Kino shook his head as his eyes finally stopped on Jupiter's face.
"My Lord," Malachite spoke, causing Kino's gaze to return to him. "I said we've found them."