My group had arrived in our target universe. I must admit, my nerves were showing. “Okay,” I gulped, “let’s get moving!”
“Moon-kyung, are you all right?” asked Joshua.
“I’m not shivering because it’s cold,” I answered.
“You’re gonna do fine!” assured Tonje. I shook my head to clear my nerves.
“Come on,” I declared. “Let’s get going. We need to find the Tarlaxian crew and the Source.” We took to the streets and noticed something was…off.
“Everyone,” called Lukas, “can anyone tell me what that palace is?” He pointed to a palace evoking a massive crystal that dominated the skyline.
“Well now, looks like we know WHEN we are as well as where,” I mused.
“Not more time-travel!” groaned Batman.
“So, we’re in this universe’s 30th century,” mused Lacey.
“30th?” repeated Lukas.
“In Sailor Moon,” I explained, “when the 21st century started, Usagi Tsukino, Sailor Moon, became Neo Queen Serenity and made Tokyo the capital of Earth. She also found a way to slow down the aging process so people could enjoy a lifespan of 1,000 years.”
“How?” asked Batman. “What’s medical science like?”
“It’s not science that did it,” I replied. “Sailor Moon is a Magical Girl.”
“…Magic?” sighed Batman.
“I know it’s a little contrived,” I assured, “but that’s standard fare for Magical Girls.”
“WHAT ARE YOU DOING HERE?!” called a woman’s voice. A quintet of women then ran up to us. They wore “sailor fuku” style outfits and had exotic hair matching their outfits’ colors. The woman who called out to us wore pink, even in her hair, and wore her hair like rabbit ears with a long ponytail behind each one. I knew her to be an adult form of Sailor Chibi Moon, Sailor Moon’s daughter. A woman in red wore her hair in an elaborate updo, revealing herself to be Sailor Vesta. A woman in blue had a bun on the top of her head and had a ring of braids with orbs dangling around her head, meaning she was Sailor Pallas. A woman with hair as pink as Sailor Chibi Moon’s had her hair in a bun with braids made into loops on the back of her head and ending in long ponytails. She was Sailor Ceres. The last woman in green and brown wore her hair in an elaborate updo with brown ponytails coming down. She was Sailor Juno. “You lot, a curfew’s in effect!” snapped Sailor Chibi Moon. “You can’t be outside while the Silver Enemy’s here at night!”
“Silver Enemy?” asked Batman.
“You know!” protested Sailor Vesta. “The Handle Heads!” Handle Head gave away who the enemy was!
“Where are they?!” I demanded, having read about how dangerous they are.
“Back there!” replied Sailor Chibi Moon. “So get to shelter and…” we rushed past her to where she pointed, “…and you’re doing the EXACT OPPOSITE OF WHAT I SAID! GET BACK HERE!” We ran down the street to confirm the Silver Enemy they were talking about. Rhythmic marching pounded on the pavement of the street as they patrolled the area, looking for any human to convert, to become like them. There was no doubt in my mind now; the Cybermen had invaded Crystal Tokyo. I didn’t see any Cybermen with black handles, so I could only believe a Cyber-Deputy was in charge of this group. One of the Cybermen spotted us and alerted his group to our presence. Every Cyberman turned to face us. I noticed the armor looked like a blend between 80’s Cyberman and modern Cyberman.
“We are the future,” droned the lead Cyberman, sounding like an 80’s Cyberman. “We are humanity 2.0. You will become like us.”
“Try and make us like you!” I challenged, burying my nerves before the fight. Like my daddy always said, “Friends may see your nerves, but your enemies must only see confidence.”
“GET OUT OF THERE!” shouted Sailor Chibi Moon.
“Your Highness,” I called, “I must ask you to trust us.”
“I…I don’t know what…” Sailor Chibi Moon was floundering at the idea that her identity was known.
“Madam, please, trust these people,” urged Lexicon. “They’re professionals when it comes to the Cybermen. Well, maybe one of them isn’t.”
“She didn’t need to know that!” I snapped as we fastened our belts. We then got ready.
“Henshin!” we all called. My Chronicle Driver spoke as we changed.
“Open! Turn! Imagine! The Spear of Lance!” We had adopted our Rider personas. As the belt announce, I became Kamen Rider Lance, a Rider based off of Korean armor worn during the Japanese invasions of Korea which ended in Korea’s victory.
“GET THEM!” I shouted. We charged the ranks of Cybermen and the battle began. The Sailor Senshi (Japanese word for Warrior) behind us gawked at how we charged the Cybermen.
“Wha…wha…how…I don’t…” floundered Sailor Chibi Moon.
“Are you familiar with multiverse theory?” asked Lexicon.
“…No, I can’t say as I am,” mumbled Sailor Chibi Moon.
“There are many realities out there,” lectured Lexicon. “Some realities are only observed. The reality these people came from observe your universe frequently, sometimes dressing up as you or your mother back in her time as Sailor Moon.”
“Hold on, are you saying that we have people watching us like we’re a t.v. show?!” yelped Sailor Chibi Moon.
“And hosting conventions dedicated to you lot,” confirmed Lexicon.
“…Wow,” breathed Sailor Chibi Moon. My team didn’t have time to react to her saying that as we were still too busy with the Cybermen. We were at a stalemate.
“Well, gaesaekki,” (son of a b***h) I hissed to my opponent, the purple highlighted Cyber-Deputy, “it’s a bit of a standoff.”
“Soon corrected,” replied the Cyber-Deputy. He turned to his troops. “Release the Cyber-Slammers.”
“Yes, Deputy,” confirmed a Cyberman as he keyed in a code on his gauntlet. Three monstrous Cybermen then arrived.
“Orders, Deputy?” asked one of the monstrous Cybermen.
“Display your prowess to them,” ordered the Cyber-Deputy as he pointed to us.
“Yes, Deputy,” confirmed the monstrous Cyberman. I noticed that one of the monstrous Cybermen had four arms, one of them had a tail and wings, and the one that spoke had four legs and three fingers.
“Sludgiona, please tell me that isn’t…” I gulped.
“The crew of the Tarlaxian scout ship!” replied Sludgiona. “But…how?! Cybermen require human parts! We’re not even REMOTELY human!”
“Such a limitation existed during our nomadic days,” explained the four-armed Cyberman, “but we’ve upgraded to convert ANY living organism, aside from amorphous life-forms such as yourself.”
“You’ve practically killed them!” snarled Sludgiona.
“Incorrect,” countered the Cyberman with a tail and wings. “We are Tarlaxian 2.0. Soon, we shall overcome the obstacles that prevent us from upgrading ones like you. We are Life 2.0. You will become like us.”
“…They’re people in the suits?!” realized Sailor Chibi Moon.
“Your Highness, I’m sorry, but yes,” I answered. “And, regretfully, everything they were is gone.”
“So you killed them!” snarled Sailor Chibi Moon as she pointed an accusing finger at the Cybermen.
“You are afraid,” observed the Cyber-Deputy. “You fear losing yourself to something greater. You fear not staying as the original Usagi Tsukino II. We can remove that fear. We can remove that pain. We can remove any emotion you view as negative.”
“And our positive emotions in the process!” argued Batman.
“Emotions are a hinderance to progress,” replied the Cyber-Deputy.
“But what about the desire to create?!” wailed Sailor Chibi Moon.
“We DO create,” answered the Cyber-Deputy.
“Only things that benefit the Cybermen!” I countered.
“Survival of the species is paramount,” dismissed the Cyber-Deputy.
“I’ve heard enough!” snapped Sailor Chibi Moon. She held her hand to her tiara and gathered energy into a disc. “MOON TIARA MAGIC!” she called as she flung the disc at a Cyberman. He was bathed in white light as the attack hit. The faded, revealing the Cyberman still standing. “Impossible!” breathed Sailor Chibi Moon. “You should have been dusted!”
“All attacks have been catalogued and adapted to,” replied the Cyber-Deputy. “Our new Cyber-Leader has been crucial to that.”
“New Cyber-Leader?” I quizzed.
“Our original Cyber-Leader was destroyed upon arrival in this universe,” explained the Cyber-Deputy. “Neo Queen Serenity was foolish enough to pursue this further.”
“What’s that supposed to mean?!” demanded Sailor Chibi Moon.
“You are the current Sailor Moon,” observed the Cyber-Deputy. “You have your mother’s original powers as well as your own. Why persist in pursuing something that is out of date?”
“Mom isn’t ‘something’! She’s ‘someone’!” snapped Sailor Chibi…let me rephrase, Sailor Moon.
“Now she is something more,” replied the Cyber-Deputy.
“Deputy,” called a Cyberman, “our new Cyber-Leader is ready.”
“Excellent,” answered the Cyber-Deputy. “Activate.” A bright light came from the parking garage entrance near us and blinded us before fading. My vision was still a little fuzzy, making me consider getting my current prescription contacts changed when this is over. From what I could tell, the distinctive shape of the original Sailor Moon stood before us.
“Mama!” called the current Sailor Moon. “It’s us! Over here!” My helmet began helping to correct my current vision, accounting for my current contacts, and cleared the picture. Neo Queen Serenity approached, well, I wished I didn’t see it. “Mama, what’s with the…the pants…Mama?” gulped Sailor Moon. My blood ran cold. What I saw was a chest unit, a silver undersuit, armor around the shoulders, legs, and arms, and a prosthetic right eye glowing blue! There was no further doubt in my mind. Neo Queen Serenity was upgraded into the new Cyber-Leader! Her hair was now silver and she had black dots on her buns instead of the black handles on her head that Cyber-Leaders usually have. “WHAT HAVE YOU MONSTERS DONE TO HER?!” demanded Sailor Moon. The Upgraded Neo Queen Serenity looked at us.
“So,” she mused, her voice being modulated, “a new member to the Vortex Riders. Otherwise, our information has proved accurate.”
“Sailor Moon, what do we do?!” called Sailor Vesta.
“We have to free Mama!” declared Sailor Moon.
“We’re outnumbered right now!” I argued. “We have to retreat!”
“But my mama’s their prisoner!” countered Sailor Moon.
“Not their prisoner, their LEADER!” corrected Lexicon.
“Orders, Leader?” asked the Cyber-Deputy.
“These units are surplus to requirements,” ordered Cyber Neo Queen Serenity. “All those declared to be nonessential to the survival of the Cyber Race are to be deleted. Eradicate them.”
“Yes, Leader,” obliged the Cyber-Deputy. The Cybermen then raised their weapons.
“Time we were somewhere relatively safer!” I decided as I summoned my steed. The others got the idea and summoned theirs. I further summoned Batman’s Bat Cycle. He grabbed Lexicon while Sludgiona joined me. The Sailor Senshi with us joined Outback, Kämpfer, and Swing while Herald B had two. We converted our steeds to bike mode and sped off while the Cybermen fired on us.
“Cyber Rider Battalion 3374 will pursue,” I ordered.
“Yes, Leader,” obliged the Cyber-Deputy. He relayed the orders and I felt, through the Cyberiad, the deployed Cyber Rider Battalion activate and pursue. They will be destroyed.
We sped through the streets, hearing the whining of engines coming up behind us. “WATCH OUT!” called Sailor Pallas. “THEY’VE GOT BIKERS!” I turned my head briefly a couple of times to see Cybermen pursuing us on hoverbikes!
“Jenjang!” (Damn it!) I swore. “FASTER!” We tried increasing speed, but that’s hard to do when dodging laser fire! Batman deployed a few smoke bombs, but the Cybermen adapted around that and continued pursuit.
“We have to get to the palace!” called Sailor Moon. “My dad should be able to help!”
“King Endymion, of course!” I affirmed. “He’s got help from the other side! Which way?!”
“Turn left!” directed Sailor Moon. We tried to, but the Cybermen blocked our path. We tried another direction, but the Cybermen blocked THAT path. Reversing would only lead to the ones behind us. We could only go forward and I had a feeling they were herding us to an undisclosed location so they could “delete” us. I tried desperately to look for an opening when…
“MARS SNAKE FIRE!” called a woman’s voice. A snake made of fire attacked the Cybermen behind us and destroyed them, causing them to give off their signature death rattle.
“SPARKLING WIDE PRESSURE!” shouted another woman. Electricity coursed through the Cybermen on our right, causing them to be destroyed while screaming.
“SPACE TURBULENCE!” announced a third woman. A large energy blast cleared the left for us.
“LEFT! NOW!” called Sailor Moon. The left was now clear as we headed to the palace unimpeded.
“Has the reason for the cessation of Cyber Rider Battalion life signals been identified?” I requested.
“The interference of three Sailor Senshi caused total battalion termination,” reported the Cyber-Deputy.
“Have they been identified?” I pressed on.
“Only by their respective attacks,” answered the Cyber-Deputy. “The attacks were Mars Snake Fire, Sparkling Wide Pressure, and Space turbulence, the respective attacks of Sailors Mars, Jupiter, and Uranus.”
“…Logically, the other Sailor Senshi of the 20th century are here,” I deduced. “Excellent. Prepare Conversion Chambers to receive them. The Vortex Riders and Batman are still surplus to requirements. The amorphous Tarlaxian is to be captured for experiments relating to upgrading her brand of life. Continue searching for the Source of Chaos.”
“Yes, Leader,” confirmed the Cyber-Deputy.
We arrived at the palace’s gates to see Sailors Saturn and Pluto greet us. Sailors Mars, Jupiter, and Uranus joined us a few seconds later. “Let them through,” bid Sailor Moon.
“What?” asked Sailor Saturn.
“They saved our lives,” explained Sailor Moon. “Let them through.” The gates opened and we went inside, parking our bikes in a designated spot and powering down. My vision was back to its blurry state, confirming I needed new contacts now. However, I didn’t need contacts to see that the palace looked more like a refugee camp! The Cybermen must have chased everyone out of their homes and Endymion opened the gates for as long as he could to keep the people safe. He probably couldn’t save EVERYONE, though. What do we tell him, his wife now commands the Cybermen? Speaking of which, Endymion approached us. Sailor Moon rushed up to him and hugged her dad.
“Lady, you’re all right!” Endymion sighed in relief.
“There were so many!” sobbed Sailor Moon. Father and daughter stayed in the embrace for a while. He then ended it and tried to get some answers.
“Your mother?” he asked. Sailor Moon looked away, ashamed.
“Neo Queen Serenity was altered by the Silver Enemy,” mumbled Mars.
“Altered?” asked Endymion.
“She’s their leader now!” elaborated Jupiter. Sailor Mercury came running up to us at that.
“Your Majesty, we’re getting a transmission from the Silver Enemy,” she reported.
“Let’s see it,” declared Endymion. An image appeared on a screen, displaying the interior of the Cybermen’s base with the upgraded Neo Queen Serenity standing in the middle.
“I am Cyber-Leader Gi,” she introduced. “We are the Cybermen. We will upgrade everyone to a level of perfection. You will become like us.”
“How?!” demanded Endymion. “We’ve scrambled all communications!”
“The knowledge Neo Queen Serenity possessed is now ours,” explained the newly christened Cyber-Leader Gi. “Your attempts at thwarting us are hopeless…Mamo-chan.” She said that, but there was no love in that phrase, only cold logic. The transmission ended, leaving us feeling very scared.