Fan Fiction http://samuraispirits.net
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Samurai Shodown Forever Fan Fiction Project
Editor's Note: This somewhat-unique approach to writing a fan fiction piece represents the efforts of several members of the message board at http://www.samuraispirits.net. Each participant took turns (which, for the most part, were randomly assigned), writing one chapter of the story until it was completed.
Ambrosia roared in fury from his dark prison. No, this simply wasn't fair - he should have won; he really should have won. He was an entity with powers that would take thousand of years for those weak and pathetic humans to understand. Yet, here he was, powerless to escape the dark void, but little did those self-righteous fools know, Ambrosia was still alive. Well, part of him would always be present; the balance of good and evil required that one could not completely win over the other. Ambrosia smiled to himself. Yes, he would succeed where so many others had failed; all he had to do was to wait for a strong body and for his own power to recharge. Then, he would rule the world and destroy all those who had been a thorn in his side. No one would be able to stand in his way.
"Soon, very soon." Ambrosia smiled. He could almost taste his victory, but first he needed to recover his strength. Closing his eyes, he turned himself away from the mortal realm and went into a deep slumber.
Years and centuries passed, Ambrosia was but an old legend forgotten by most, but very much alive. Eventually, he stirred from his slumber. To his horror, he woke to a world alien to the one he knew from the past, but it didn't matter. The humans of this time period were weaker in spirit and in mind. This will be an easy victory, Ambrosia thought. That's when he felt it, the surge of mystical energy, and a very powerful one. The source was easy to track down; he was attracted to it like a magnet, so potent and so desirable did he find it. Ambrosia was rather surprised to find that the wielder of the power was a young girl of sixteen, with a weird hairstyle. Her name was Tsukino Usagi. Yes, this girl was definitely a rabbit. While she was sleeping, Ambrosia slowly wove himself into her mind, looking for a weakness or a door that would give him total control over her power. Finally, after searching, he saw the door that would lead him to the core of her intellect where he would have total control over her.
However, Ambrosia didn't expect the girl to have some kind of protective ward on the door. As soon as he touched the knob, a crescent moon appeared before him and in a bright flash of light he screamed in pain and was propelled away. Even though he didn't get into her mind, he did see her surface thoughts. Most of them were about the love of her life, Mamoru. Ambrosia didn't understand why she saw him in three different ways. Well, he didn't ponder much on such things, and immediately started to look closer at what he perceived to be the girl's only weakness. He didn't realize that this action did not go unnoticed. The rabbit woke up, screaming her lungs out, the moment Ambrosia tried to get into her mind.
"Usagi, what's wrong?" Her friend and guardian cat, Luna, questioned, looking worriedly at Usagi.
"I don't know, Luna. It felt cold inside me, then the feeling was gone." She replied, shuddering and gathering the blankets around her.
"Was it the Negaverse?"
"I don't know. It felt evil and bad, yet different. It didn't try to take my energy, but it also felt ancient." Usagi sighed, getting up from the bed, and moved to stare out of the window of her room, looking up at the full moon.
Luna jumped on the windowsill and sat down next to Usagi. "You know there are other evils in this world besides the Negaverse. Maybe the force you felt is native of Earth. Given the very nature of the wickedness of this planet is greed; maybe it sought your crystal. There is one thing I don't understand. Mamoru should have sensed this dark presence; his powers should make him aware of this malevolence, especially if it's indigenous of Earth. Perhaps he has yet to fully tap into his powers, but I think it would be wise to tell Rei about this and have her do a fire reading." Luna said after a bit of thinking.
"I guess you're right. I hope he'll be all right. I should get back to bed now; tomorrow I have a long day ahead of me. Goodnight, Luna." The rabbit yawned and went back to sleep.
"Sleep well, Usagi." Luna was deeply troubled about Usagi's reaction; the cat, however, didn't voice it at the time.
It took him quite a while, but he finally located Mamoru. Ambrosia saw him as he browsed through the useless trinkets of a jewelry store. Mamoru finally set his sight on a crescent moon shaped pendant; he smiled and asked the jeweler for the price.
"Quite an unique piece you have here, sir; it's pure silver with a small, star-shaped, diamond stud at the center. I know it looks rather plain, but this is a genuine from the famous 'Moon Princess Collection'. The pendant is worth seven hundred American dollars." The jeweler explained.
Mamoru whistled at the price. Of course, nothing was too expensive for his Usagi. Still, seven hundred dollars for one piece of jewelry . . . In his mind, he debated if he should buy it or not. At last, Mamoru decided he would. After all, tomorrow was Usagi's birthday. A chuckle escaped his throat as he mentally pictured her reaction as she opened the small box.
"All right. I'll take it, but for that price is it possible to include a silver necklace?" He asked while fishing out his wallet.
The merchant nodded. A silver chain was nothing compared to the sale he had just made, and he was glad to give it as a courtesy gift. Mamoru gave the money to the jeweler and received his package. Smiling to himself, he walked out of the store into the empty streets of Tokyo. It was getting rather late.
Ambrosia had been watching the whole exchange with contempt. Even if the Prince of Earth wasn't as strong as the Moon Princess, Mamoru was young and over time his power would grow. Besides, from what he had gathered about the young Prince, he was immortal. Ambrosia knew that Usagi was the only person who was powerful enough to destroy him, but he knew her weakness well now. Destroying her would be easier than he had hoped.
Ambrosia followed Mamoru as he walked the streets on his way home. Once the Prince settled into his bed, Ambrosia slipped into his mind and soon took over Mamoru's psyche, enslaving him body and soul. He laughed gleefully. Yes, tomorrow would be very interesting.
The very next day, Mamoru showed up at Usagi's house to drive her to Rei's temple where her friends would shower Usagi with cake and gifts. On the way, there was tension between the two lovers, but this was quickly forgotten as the Sailor Scouts rushed outside upon their arrival to wish Usagi a happy birthday.
Soon, it was Mamoru's turn to offer his gift. "Happy birthday, Usagi; I have something special for you." Mamoru, now Ambrosia, said sweetly as he moved behind her to put the moon pendant necklace around Usagi's neck.
"Oh, Mamo-chan, it's beautiful . . ." She replied, tears in her eyes as the other scouts gasped at the extravagance of the gift. Slowly, she lifted a hand to touch the pendant, only to cry out in pain as electricity coursed painfully into her body. Usaji fell to the ground in agony.
A black sphere suddenly appeared from the possessed Mamoru and he used it to blast the other scouts.
"Now, time for my revenge!!!" He gloated. The obsidian globe suddenly grew and enveloped both the Moon Princess and Ambrosia/Mamoru and they vanished into thin air.
Author: Mark Patraw
Mizuro Ami struggled to rise, but the world seemed to undulate under her feet; white dots danced frantically before her eyes and she collapsed again. Her entire body ached; what had Mamoru hit them with? And more importantly, why? Something wasn't right, but she couldn't put her finger on what as her normally analytical mind refused to function properly. Mizuro gradually became aware of the unpleasant smell of something burnt, and soon came to the unfortunate conclusion that the odor originated from her. Her clothing was blackened, and here and there a wisp of smoke still arose, but her skin seemed largely unscathed. Whatever had happened, they had survived; that, at least, was something.
Around her, she could hear the others girls beginning to stir as well, moaning with pain. They were beginning to draw a crowd, but that was only to be expected. Cars came to a screeching halt and several figures moved about the four of them, concern in their voices as they tried to help.
"Are you all right?"
"Goddamn! What happened here? Were you girls playing with fireworks?"
"Somebody call a doctor!"
"Usagi . . ." Rei Hino muttered. She pushed her long, raven hair out of her face as a young couple that had been jogging nearby helped her to her feet. A mixture of horror and revulsion came over Rei's features when she saw her hand come away covered with soot. "We've got to help Usagi!"
"Hands off! I can get up by myself." Makoto Kino half-snarled as she shook off a balding man in a business suit whom she towered over, and then promptly fell on her face, unable to stand under her own power. Embarrassed, she allowed the man to assist her.
"Why did Mamoru attack us?" Minako Aino stammered, sitting up.
None of them knew the answer to Minako's question, but they all shared the same unspoken promise: They would find out, and nothing on this Earth, or the Negaverse for that matter, would protect Mamoru if he had harmed their beloved friend in any way.
"One thing's for sure, this is a birthday Usagi won't soon forget . . . " Mizuro whispered.
"Will you stop that incessant whining? I can't hear myself think!"
Usagi struggled to contain her tears, but it only took one glance at the enraged look on her beloved Mamoru's face to set her off again. She had never seen him so cold, so hateful; he almost seemed like another person altogether. What was wrong with him?
"I . . . can't . . . help . . . it . . . WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!!!"
"Oh, my aching head . . . " Mamoru grumbled as he rubbed his temples and squeezed his eyes tightly shut.
With his attention diverted by her wailing, Usagi sensed an opportunity to escape. Through tear-filled eyes, she scanned her surroundings - they were in a large, concrete room, littered with debris and machine parts, a warehouse perhaps, but she didn't see a door, only barred windows. Still, she had to try. But, as soon as she attempted to move, a jolt of pain wracked her body and she yelped. It was that accursed pendant! She had to get it off somehow . . .
"You're not Mamoru! I know you aren't! He'd never do this to me!" She spat in frustration.
"You're half-right. I am Mamoru and I am not. My true name is Ambrosia. I pull the strings, and this carcass obeys like a good puppet, but it is not my body." Mamoru smiled.
"Why are you doing this?"
"Because I want your power, and his. His mind was weak; it was child's play to take him. But you, your power is guarded. I can't simply walk in and take it. You have to willingly let me claim it; you must open the gate for me."
"I'll never give it to you!"
"No? Then watch the one you love die because you refuse me."
A torrent of black smoke began to pour forth from Mamoru's eyes, nostrils, ears, and mouth. He fell to the floor, panting heavily, as the smoke shifted and rolled in the air, taking on the rough form of the upper half of a man's body. A hole opened in the "head" of the creature and a horrible laugh rolled out, full of evil, and Usagi shuddered at the sound of it.
"U. . . Usagi?" Mamoru gasped, dragging his head upwards, his eyes meeting hers.
"Mamoru, look out!"
But it was too late, and Mamoru in no condition to react. One shadowy hand gestured, and tendrils of red electricity flew from it, lifting him high into the air. He convulsed, screaming in pain.
"Stop it!" Usagi cried.
"Not until you give me what I want."
"Never! You won't kill him; you need him alive! You need us both alive!"
The obsidian cloud laughed again. "No, I don't. If you think I'm bluffing, you're sorely mistaken. I'd like to add your power to my own, but if I can't, destroying it will serve me just as well. Either way, I win."
She sensed the creature spoke truth. What could she do? Mamoru's screams ripped through her heart; she couldn't let him suffer like this. But, if she gave Ambrosia what he wanted, she'd only make that demon stronger than it already was, perhaps invincible . . . and he'd surely reward her by making her his unwilling slave like Mamoru or by slaying them both.
A fluttering of wings above startled her, she tried to look up, but a wave of agony from the pendant stopped her. A small bat flew into view and hovered near Ambrosia, squeaking and chattering noisily.
"Eh? Not now, I have no time for distractions. They can't stop me anyway."
The bat chattered again, louder and more persistently.
Ambrosia snatched it out of the air and crushed it. Its lifeless body fell, crumpled and forgotten to the floor, with an almost inaudible sound. Usagi couldn't help feeling sorry for it.
The crimson energy surrounding and torturing Mamoru's body vanished, and he too returned to the earth, sprawled haphazardly like a bundle of sticks. Usagi was afraid he was dead, but the rising and falling of his chest reassured her.
"It seems your friends weren't destroyed by my attack after all." Ambrosia growled. "They're coming to rescue you, or should I say, they're coming to be slaughtered. Behold!"
Ambrosia gestured and there was a flash of light and the smell of ozone. Two figures suddenly appeared. One was unbelievably huge and fat, from his flamboyant clothes and painted face, he looked like a professional wrestler. The other was an ugly, green creature, dressed in orange tatters, one arm sheathed in a black gauntlet whose fingers ended in meter-long razors. Usagi had seen some hideous pairs, but not much uglier than these two.
"What'n tarnation? Whar in the bloody blue 'ell am I?" The big one grumbled, scratching his crotch vigorously; the chains wrapped around his chest and shoulders jingled merrily. "Dammit, ah'm right hung'ry."
"You're always hungry." The green one snarled in a high-pitched voice, as it bent down onto all fours and scanned its surroundings suspiciously with its bulbous eyes. "Air ssssmellssss funny here. Bad ssssmell."
The large one let loose a thunderous fart. "Whoops, that must'a been me, Gen-an, ol' buddy."
"No . . . not you, sssssomething else . . . " The green one hissed, it's long tongue flicking out like a serpent.
"Ahem." Ambrosia interrupted, startling the two, who whirled to face him.
"Oh, it's jess the bossman." The fat one bent over and whispered to his companion.
"Sssshut up, Earthquake! I can ssssee that!" The green one countered irritably, elbowing his larger companion in his ample belly.
"I have a job for you two . . ." The smoke cloud began.
"Sure thang, boss. Um, any chance this here job involves some vittles?"
"Silence!" Ambrosia thundered, and the two henchmen shrank and cowered before him.
"Forgive him, masssster, hissss tongue wagssss when hissss belly issss empty."
"There are four young women on their way here. A mere nuisance at best that I have no time for, but exercise caution all the same as they're not your typical band of schoolgirls. I want you to dispose of them. Perform well and you will be rewarded."
"Is that all? Sheeet, thas only an app'tizer." Earthquake sounded disappointed. His eyes passed over Usagi and Mamoru, and the fat man smacked his lips wistfully.
"Perhaps, Earthquake, perhaps. IF you serve me well." The cloud sighed. "Now go!"
"Fressssh meat!" Gen-an purred, clicking his claws. "It will be assss you command, my Lord."
"Rin, pyou, tou, sha, kai, jin, retsu, sai, zen . . ." Rei chanted, standing before the flames in Hikawa temple; hoping that this might help her learn of Usagi's whereabouts. The other girls sat, nervously waiting for the enchantment to work. A few moments, although it seemed like hours for them, passed before images finally appeared in the flames.
First, they saw an empty concrete room, and, judging by the looks, it was an abandoned warehouse. That first vision lasted for only a few seconds, and then it switched to a disturbing picture of Usagi sitting on the floor of what appeared to be that same chamber, crying. A strange, sinister-looking, smoke cloud was towering above her. Then, the image in the flames changed again; this time it showed two grotesque, evil figures. One was extremely huge and fat. An evil grin was stretched across his face, and a great chain could be seen coiled around his unbelievably bloated stomach. The other figure was smaller in size, but his ugliness far exceeded anything the girls have ever encountered before - green skin full of scars and pimples, a huge hunchback, eyes that looked like they'd pop out of their sockets at any moment, and a huge mouth full of sharp yellow teeth . . . truly a disturbing sight. Finally, the vision in the flames faded . . .
"What is that place?!" Makoto asked, after she got over the shock.
"It could be anywhere . . . we might never find it." Rei whispered to herself, still trying to concentrate - but her efforts were in vain, the apparition was gone.
The four girls sat silently in the temple room, hopelessly trying to think of something. Suddenly, Mizuro stood up; her wide-open eyes reflecting hope.
"That's right!!" she said quite loudly to herself while staring into the distance. The other girls stared at her, holding their breaths in suspense.
"What Mizuro!? What is it??" Makato yelled at her.
Mizuro looked at the other girls as she quickly started to explain what her eyes caught in the vision. "Did you see . . . through the windows of that room we saw . . . did you see the building across the street? That's Nagai, Inc.! So, that must be their warehouse!!!"
"That's right!" Rei said with a smile. "I see that building every morning on the way to school!!!"
Minako jumped up and yelled, "C'mon! There's no time to lose! We must hurry there!"
The four girls nodded and ran towards the temple's exit.
Morozumi Taizan was sitting on the floor of his house, which was located on the snowy slopes of the Hida Mountains. The wind carried snowflakes inside through the broken screen door. The entire house was in very bad condition, almost as if were deserted, but Morozumi lived there all the same - but perhaps living was not the right word. For days and nights he would just sit there quietly, looking into the distance at something that didn't exist. Perhaps he gazed at the images from his memory, the images of a past life when he was happy. Morozumi couldn't cope with the strong guilt and sadness he felt; guilt because he couldn't protect what he had held so dear, his wife, Sumiko and their only child, Bokuzan. The shame was so strong that it drove him insane. Morozumi did not dwell on revenge, because he knew that would never bring back his loving family. It seemed that he was just waiting for death. Although it wasn't really his fault that Yuga's demons had killed his family, all he really wanted was forgiveness from his wife and child. Maybe that would give him enough strength to continue with life, but that seemed impossible . . .
He was at the edge of awareness when he suddenly felt something; some sort of essence was in the room with him. Being a demon sealer, he could feel all kinds of spiritual energies and such. Through his mind ran the thought that maybe the spirits of his wife and child had come to visit him one last time, but, as the feeling grew stronger, he realized that this was not ordinary human spiritual energy. It was something much stronger. Maybe the demons were coming back for him at last?
Bright light appeared in the room, behind Morozumi, casting his shadow before him. Although he felt no fear, Morozumi, still sitting, retrieved his spear, Jinsou Mizuguki, from the floorboards.
The light lasted for a few seconds, and then it started to lose its brightness until it finally faded. Taizan knew he was no longer alone in the house; whatever the mystery force was, he could feel its presence behind him. He had never felt such strong spiritual energy before, it was as if it wasn't from this world, nor did Morozumi feel any threat or danger from it - whatever it was, it didn't have evil intentions. Still, he didn't turn; he just sat there, waiting . . .
"I . . . I mean no harm." A gentle female voice spoke after a few, very long seconds. To Morozumi ears, she sounded fearful.
"Is that so . . ." Morozumi said with a very calm voice. "What do you want then?"
"My name is Serenity. I need your help, Morozumi Taizan." She spoke worriedly.
"My help?" Morozumi asked, finally turning towards the source of the voice. He saw a beautiful, young woman with long, white hair. She wore an arrestingly elegant dress that was pure as snow, but her face was troubled; he could see despair and sadness in her eyes.
"Yes! I need your help! Only you can help me . . ." The woman said. "I need your demon sealing skills, Morozumi Taizan!" She continued.
"To what end?" Morozumi questioned, quite surprised.
"A demon has awoken from his long slumber . . . a very strong demon. He is a great threat to the entire world. He must be stopped. You must stop him, please . . ."
"Me? Heh . . . there are plenty of other demon sealers throughout the whole of Japan; you didn't have to bother coming all the way here."
"Listen to me, please. In the distant future, a demon known as Ambrosia has freed himself from his seal. He is holding . . ."
"Ambrosia?" Morozumi interrupted Serenity.
"Yes, Ambrosia! He is holding my daughter hostage!" She stopped for a moment, took a deep breath, and continued, "In our time, there are no more demon sealers. Even if they still existed, only your demon sealing technique is capable of defeating such a strong devil as Ambrosia. You are the last one who holds that knowledge. Please, you must come with me and help my daughter!"
When the woman spoke that he alone was the last reservoir of the demon sealing expertise she required, Morozumi felt a sudden pang of grief. An image of his son flew through his mind, the memory of how the boy had just begun to learn how to draw the sealing characters. Taizan knew Ambrosia was one of Yuga's worst demons.
"My daughter, Usagi, is very important for the safety of this planet. She fights against all manners of evil, with all her might, for the well being of every living thing." The woman explained, "If she dies, all lives are at stake!"
"If she is so strong, why doesn't she defeat Ambrosia herself? Why don't you help her? I can see that you're powerful enough." He asked, smiling . . .
"Although she has great powers, Ambrosia is too potent for her! And I cannot leave the spiritual realm, thus my powers are worthless on Earth. Not only hers, but thousands of other lives are in danger if Ambrosia succeeds. Please, you must help her!!" Serenity cried, tears filling her eyes.
Morozumi started to think about how unfair life was. He who could have saved his wife and child, wasn't there for them, and this woman, who was by her daughter's side, was powerless to save her. Maybe this was a chance to set some things right, maybe this could fill the emptiness he drowned in. If nothing else, returning Ambrosia to his prison would weaken Yuga.
He stood up, his mind made up, and agreed. "All right . . ."
Serenity smiled, and with a happy voice said, "Thank you, thank you so much!! Now . . . take my hand and hold on."
Without saying a word, Morozumi took Serenity's hand. The bright light appeared again, blinding him. The last thing he saw was the floor disappearing beneath his feet . . .
Author: Jane Doe
Disorientation washed over his ravaged senses as he came to, but he quickly regained his bearings by focusing on the familiar grain of his spear's shaft. As he gazed around him, the future left him unimpressed. He was in a dark alley that reeked of urine and waste. Next to him was a container, that by smell, he supposed was for garbage. However, he would have been just as unmoved had he appeared within a crystal palace, such things no longer mattered to the remnants of his soul. The things of worth were no more: they had been slain by Yuga's evil hand. Yuga . . . Evil . . . With that ill-fated name, he remembered the mission entrusted to him and the spirit that brought him. With the memory came the awareness of being alone, no beautiful spirit maiden . . . With the recollection came the knowledge of the thick smell of evil, stronger than even the smell of refuse. He followed it out into the street.
Luna, fleeter of foot than the girls, being a cat, was a little ways ahead of the Inner Senshi. She was about to reach the block where the warehouse lay when a strange man carrying a rather large, and sharp looking, spear emerged from a side alley. Startled, her ears flattened against her head as she hissed in a very catlike manner. Taizan glanced at the cat with its unusual crescent moon marking on the forehead, shrugged and was about to pass his way when the sailors caught up with Luna.
"Hold it right there, you vile fiend of the Negaverse! You thought you could pick on Luna unhindered did you? Now face the might of Jupiter's wrath! In the name of Jupiter, you shall be punish-" a strong jab from the spear's butt end to her liver rendered Makoto temporarily winded, thereby cutting her little ditty short.
"You were in my way; now you're not." The man told Makoto's bent over form. "As for you other children, I care nothing for you, leave me be and go play elsewhere."
In the background, Luna attempted to be heard but went unnoticed.
"You hurt Makoto!" Rei exclaimed, fuming with anger
"Oh? Did I?" Asked Taizan blankly. "Well, at least I didn't kill her."
"Why you . . . prepare to taste the flames of-" Rei began.
"Wait!" said Ami as she laid a restraining hand on her fiery friend's arm. "Are you sure you want to do this? Is he really our enemy?"
In the background, Luna's attempts to be heard continued to go unnoticed
"I think he's kind of cute . . ." Mizuro interjected.
"What do you mean 'is he our enemy', just look at his evil eyes!" Rei exclaimed emphatically.
"Umm . . . he's wearing glasses, you can't really see them." Makoto pointed out, pain still in her voice.
"Grr . . . whatever. He attacked both Luna and Makoto, he is carrying a weapon, and I don't sense any good in him." Rei growled.
"But he didn't-" Luna began before being cut short yet again.
"This is true . . . all right lets do it." Conceded Ami.
"Besides, only bad guys wear all black!" commented Sailor Venus.
"Yosh, lets get dressed!" Shouted Rei.
Luna stamped her paws in frustration and glared at the teenage quartet.
"By the power of Mars/ Mercury/ Venus/Jupiter…" the girls chanted in unison as each began to twirl with much ado of twinkling lights and what have you, suddenly they were undressed for battle...
Remarkably, probably due to being slightly puzzled by these girls, Taizan had the patience to wait during all their chatter, but not to sit still while they went through their routine. The sailors, having done their dance, suddenly noticed that the man was holding a dripping calligraphy brush in each of his hands, they were clueless as to when the man had pulled them out.
"Seal." Taizan said somberly, thereby freezing the four Inner Senshi. "You didn't even notice my attack with your prancing about. Your fighting spirit is weak. If you mean to fight, fight. Do not talk. Had I used retribution you would all be dead. Now listen to your talking cat." This said, he left following the smell of evil to its source . . .
Meanwhile . . . for once Luna could speak her mind without being interrupted or ignored, and she fully intended on taking full advantage of the petrified sailors to give them her two cents worth. In fact, she began giving the girls a good scolding and her trademark "None-of-this-would-have-happened-if-you-had-just-listened-to-me-speach". The rolling of eight teenage eyeballs testified that the cat's words did not fall on deaf ears.
Somewhere in downtown Tokyo, Earthquake and Gen-an wandered and wondered at the marvels of the twentieth century. Likewise, the twentieth century marveled at them. The duo (admittedly Gen-an) had understood early on that people would pay money to stand next to them as they were subjected to a flash of light. They had quickly collected a modest, yet tidy, sum…
" . . It ssseemsss that thessse people think we are disssguisssed as charactersss from sssome game." said Gen-an.
"Hey, pah'tner, aintent we s'posed to be a doin' sumthin'?" the fat man drawled in his Texan accent as he scratched his hairless scalp.
"Probably, but if you can't remember it, I'll pretend that I can't either." The green midget said slyly.
"Huh?" was Earthquake's befuddled reply.
"Why don't you go over to that eatery over there and ssspend all the new casssh we've just been given. Meanwhile, I'll go make a withdrawal at a bank and get sssome more, I'll meet you here in two hours…" Gen-an said before leaving.
"M-A-C- sum'thin'…" Earthquake read hesitantly, slowly piecing the first three letters together before giving up. "Mac sum'thin'? Ah reckon tha'sounds like Irish food, but it don't smell too bad…" he said as he sniffed the grease in the air. Drooling and licking his chops, he made his way for the entrance . . .
The foul anthropoid miasma laughed as it resumed its torture of Mamoru. The glowing red eyes shone with perverse pleasure at the giving of pain, and Mamoru's writhing left little doubt as to its intensity. Usagi thought his screams would never end; her pain was naught in comparison with that caused by seeing her beloved so… Finally, the sting broke the last of Mamoru's physical barriers. His primal scream of anguish drowned all other sounds; it was the raw expression of soul-consuming pain. Ambrosia laughed with glee, but suddenly his red eyes were mere slits of suspicion. First Mamoru slumped, as if unconscious, but almost immediately after a strange pearly light seemed to emanate from him, enveloping him.
The light flashed brightly, blinding all present, and when they regained their sight Mamoru had disappeared. In his stead stood two men - one dressed as if he had come from the set of a period movie, complete with straw sandals and big shiny spear, the other, who looked utterly lost and disoriented, was dressed for the opera - the works, complete with ruffled shirt, sash, flimsy mask, top hat, black and red velvet cape and bow tie.
"Morozumi Taizan? What are you doing here? How dare you interrupt me? What have you done?" screeched Ambrosia with fear. Quickly, he scanned Taizan's mind and laughed with exultation. "Fool! You are no longer pure enough to withhold me! Your grief has diminished you!" This said, the evil spirit engulfed the man's body and then insidiously seeped into it.
Taizen's usually impassive face went through fearsome contortions that reflected the raging inner conflict going on within his soul. Ambrosia spoke through his lips, but the words were inarticulate.
"Who ever you are with your tuxedo and silly mask, I'm going to kill you. Then I'll torture Usagi until she abandons herself to me." These were the word's Taizan's lips formed with difficulty.
Up until that point, the masked man seemed to be totally lost, he had no memories nor bearings as to where he was and what he was doing here. Yet, when then man with the spear mentioned hurting Usagi, something deep within him impelled him to action, something about the name Usagi triggered a strong feeling within him. He grabbed a lead pipe that lay conveniently on the floor and attacked.
Taizan neatly sidestepped his opponent's vertical swing, even moving like a puppet on strings he was still a much better martial artist than his opponent. His spear flashed twice through the air and Mamoru discovered that instead of a lead pipe he now merely held a stub. Tuxedo crouched in a defensive position and, suddenly, his cape swished as he leapt unnaturally high and disappeared into the shadows of the warehouse's rafters. All was silent save for Sailor Moon's sobbing. Morozumi's contorted face peered upwards into the gloom, trying to discern where his opponent was, when suddenly, a flash of red came streaking towards him. Somehow, he managed to get the blade of his weapon between the streaking object and his body. Thus, the rose being deflected, for it was a rose, went spinning head-over-stem away from Morozumi . . . towards Usagi.
With a sound akin to the breaking of a crystal glass, the rose hit the pendant squarely and shattered it. For once, Usagi transformed swiftly with a mere minimum of twinkling lights and dancing.
"For love and justice I am the beautiful, sailor-suited soldier, Sailor Moon! In the name of the moon, I'll punish you!" she said. "Moon healing escalation!" A mysterious and evanescent moon appeared behind her and its pale light gently streamed towards Taizan and seemed to cause him much pain, until finally Ambrosia's shadowy form exited his body and seemed pinned to thin air by the mystical moon's light.
Morozumi felt at peace, he felt whole again as he had not since his family's death. With a soft smile that seemed unusual but that somehow suited his stern face, he concentrated his power on his weapon, which began to glow. He used it to swiftly trace a huge kanji for evil over Ambrosia's form. The glowing letter shimmered in the air until he slashed it viciously in twain, thereby banishing the evil spirit.
Sailor Moon looked about in search of Tuxedo, but, as usual, after saving her, he had vanished. She knew she'd find Mamoru back in his home and hopefully he wouldn't remember any of this. Some instinct, possibly a whispered suggestion from her mother's spirit, impelled her to offer Taizan her help in getting back to his time, which he readily accepted. It was a brief trip to Meô Setsuna's house, and just before Sailor Saturn used her time key to send him back, Morozumi slapped his forehead as he remembered the frozen girls.
"Oh . . . by the way, your friends are on the sidewalk near the warehouse where I found you. All you need to do to free them is wipe the ink from their foreheads . . ." He then nodded his readiness to Sailor Pluto. "Thanks . . . " He told Usagi simply as he walked through the portal in time back to a life he would have to rebuild.
Near the warehouse, the petrified girls were getting frantic. Luna had been sermonizing them for three straight hours, and the sun was setting in the west. They would have cried tears of gratitude had they known Usagi was coming to set them free, but until then, Luna droned on.
Not quite… In the newspaper, the following article appeared a short time after the troubles:
"TWO NEW FIGHTERS FOR KOF TEAM KOREA!
Team Korea's predilection for reforming criminals is well known; they have recently acquired two new specimens bearing a strange resemblance to Kim Kaphwan's prior pupils. One is huge and bears a weapon on a chain and the other is short and uses a gloved blade. Rumor has it that Jun, a fellow trainer of Mr. Kaphwan's, found the fat man going by the name of Earthquake as he was devouring the numerous hamburgers he had just stolen from a local fast food restaurant; whilst Mr.Kaphwan intercepted the blade wielder during a bank heist . . . More information on page 27."