The Four Points

Chapter Six: Legends and Dreams! The Moon Kingdom's Tragic Past

© 2006 by Shari

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Nephrite was not sure what exactly had happened. One minute he was about to enter the Starlight Tower and the next... he rose, he had not even been aware of having apparently passing out as Kunzite had said. Glancing at the taller king now, Nephrite was not sure what to think. Back in the Dark Kingdom who wouldn't have trusted Kunzite to tell him the correct time of day let alone follow his guidance into a place that Nephrite knew nothing about. Kunzite had not even made that much of threat against either himself or Jadeite, Nephrite mused thoughtfully. True they were powerless and Nephrite knew that he at least would be an equal match for the oldest king if they ever went head to head without magical abilities. Nephrite had not even considered challenging Kunzite for the leadership he had assumed was his. Jadeite showed no desires to become the leader of the four and Zoisite, Nephrite knew would never follow anyone else but Kunzite. The decision had been made for him, Nephrite decided but this still brought about a great sense of unease. Looking at Kunzite now Nephrite knew, deep down, that he was the rightful leader of the four. It was ironic really, Nephrite thought a little bitterly, back in the Dark Kingdom before Kunzite allowed Zoisite to share his bed Nephrite had admired the first king. Not in a romantic sense that Zoisite did but Nephrite appreciated the fact that Kunzite was a good, no great king and he had set goals for himself to become as good as Kunzite. This admiration dissolved, however, when Kunzite took his student Zoisite into his bed. This had been completely out of character and true Nephrite sometimes had sex with women from Earth, but to take a lover and keep him at his side was unnatural within the Dark Kingdom. Sex was just sex as far as Nephrite was concerned and nothing more. That was until he met Naru. She had shown him that there was more to love than loving a person simply for one night. Love was timeless and could withstand anything if it was true enough. Nephrite snorted to himself, suddenly wishing that he had a brandy. Gods he must be frightened to start thinking like this. Yet all he had thought of was true.

I shall give to you the answers you have been searching for.

He was not surprised to hear the voice of before, the voice they had first heard in the desert. Nephrite had known from the minute the tower took hold of them that she would appear once more. She was not eternal, but perhaps she was something as great.

"Who are you?" Kunzite demanded, he could not accept what Nephrite did so willingly.

When the time is right you shall be told

"Kunzaito-sama!" any further protests from the first king were cut short by the appearance of his lover.

The small man ran to Kunzite, again as he had in the desert, Zoisite flung his arms around Kunzite's back, trembling against him.

Rolling his eyes at this display of emotion, Nephrite instead turned his attention to his surroundings. They were in the tower he supposed, near the top. The room was dark; the only light was from the white of the moon, an almost eerie silence over taking the four of them. From what Nephrite could make out there had been a fight here. Scorch marks burned the marble polished floor.

"What happened here?" Nephrite demanded roughly of the two remaining kings "What happened after my death?"

Kunzite glanced down at Zoisite and the smaller man nodded, as if silently agreeing with his lover.

"After you died we discovered that Beryl had withheld important information concerning the whereabouts of the ginzuishou or most likely that Metallia did not explain fully the circumstances of the past. As you recall from the battle against the Moon Kingdom the Seven Great Youma were lost to us early on. According to Beryl someone, we can only assume that it was Queen Serenity, trapped the Seven Great Youma in the light of the ginzuishou. The ginzuishou subsequently shattered into seven shards of crystal and fell to Earth imprisoning a Great Youma inside each piece. The pieces were known as the nijizuishou. Beryl modified the kurozuishou to seek out the humans with a nijizuishou inside of them. She assigned Zoisaito the task of retrieving the seven nijizuishou. Unfortunately the Sailor Senshi and Tuxedo Kamen had also heard this tale and often appeared to challenge us for them."

"That bastard Kamen" Zoisite broke in, his nose wrinkling in disgust at the mention of the caped man, "If it weren't for him I would have obtained all seven nijizuishou for certain."

"Which would have been a bad thing as you would still be under Beryl's control and we would be dead" Nephrite mildly pointed out.

Zoisite's mouth curved up into a malicious smirk "You would still be dead and you tell me that it would be a bad thing?"

Kunzite shook his head in mock amusement at the display and before Zoisite could interrupt again Nephrite enquired to know what exactly this had to do with the Starlight Tower.

"As I said the Sailor Senshi and Tuxedo Kamen proved to be somewhat of an interference when retrieving the nijizuishou and Beryl is not known for her patience and understanding that these things take time. When the last of the nijizuishou had been awakened the Sailor Senshi had one, we had four and Tuxedo Kamen had two. Taking back the nijizuishou in the Sailor Senshi's possession proved an easy task. Zoisite held some members of the general public hostage in an amusement park with the nijizuishou as ransom. Two of them turned out to be friends of Sailor Moon's and of course she appeared to save them. There was little bit of a set back when Tuxedo Kamen arrived to fight alongside Sailor Moon."

Zoisite sniggered, "Until I blasted the bastard with my Sakura petals and left him thwacking at thin air with his walking stick. Sailor Moon was too concerned about Naru and her boyfriend to watch the nijizuishou very carefully. I took it back with ease."

"Naru?" Nephrite interrupted sharply "You used Naru again?"

Zoisite shrugged, moving partly behind Kunzite "She was an easy target. I was going to turn her into a Youma but I suppose sitting on a merry-go-round whilst trying to invoke my powers was not a good idea."

Nephrite's first instinct was to bury his fist in Zoisite's face for using Naru and wanting to harm his kitten in any way at all. Still he held his temper in check by furiously reminding himself that he too had allowed her to be possessed by his other self and had lied to her on more occasions than he could count. Sighing he rubbed his aching temples and asked Kunzite to continue.

"With the Senshi's nijizuishou back in our possession the only thing left to do was go after Tuxedo Kamen and the two crystals he had. To do that Zoisite..."

Zoisite again interrupted with a: "Kunzite-sama! You can't tell them!" he gazed pleadingly into his lover's eyes "Please..."

Kunzite sighed, "Zoisaito as much as I hate to admit it we are all together in this and they need to understand." Then addressing Jadeite and Nephrite again, whilst ignoring Zoisite's further protests he continued "In order to lure out Tuxedo Kamen we decided to use Sailor Moon as bait, seeing as he always turned up to save her when she was in trouble. Of course there was no telling when Sailor Moon would put in an appearance and more often than not the rest of the Senshi were with her. It was then we decided to use a fake Sailor Moon to lure out the Senshi and Tuxedo Kamen, I believe the humans called it 'killing two birds with one stone'."

"A fake Sailor Moon?" Nephrite repeated and then cast a look at Zoisite's now deeply red face "You didn't?" he could not suppress the chuckle that passed his lips as he tried to imagine Zoisite in a sailor fuku.

"It was only in aid of the plan" Zoisite scowled and the turning to Kunzite "Did we have to tell them that? It is not as if it were an important detail."

Kunzite smiled gently and kissed his lover's forehead. This calmed Zoisite somewhat and once more Kunzite continued to explain, "The fake Sailor Moon worked well, better than we could ever have hoped for. Both the Senshi and Tuxedo Kamen followed Zoisite to the docks and once there the Senshi appeared to challenge me. It would seem they thought they were rescuing the fake Sailor Moon from the Dark Kingdom."

Zoisite snorted, "Those stupid little girls. I looked better in that fuku than any of them ever did."

Nephrite frowned; he still couldn't imagine Zoisite in a fuku.

"They stepped into my trap and I used an energy dome to imprison them all whilst Zoisite went after Tuxedo Kamen. The man thought he was rescuing Sailor Moon and by the time he realised it was Zoisite, he had already been injured. Unfortunately Sailor Venus saved Tuxedo Kamen before he could be made to give up the nijizuishou and the rest of the Sailor Senshi. Beryl forced us to retreat and Tuxedo Kamen escaped. However, we had learnt an important piece of information, the identity of Tuxedo Kamen. Using this Zoisite challenged him to a duel with the nijizuishou as prize for the victor. We lured him to the tower and tricked him into losing all of the crystals using a girl he had brought with him as a hostage." It was Kunzite's turn to grow uncomfortable as he spoke the next words "Tuxedo Kamen was angered at the loss of the nijizuishou and threw a rose at Zoisite, cutting his face. Then he and the girl escaped into the elevator shaft. Beryl had ordered that Tuxedo Kamen be brought back alive but Zoisite..."

"He cut my face" the smaller man took over from Kunzite "Did he really think I was going to let him live after that? So I arranged for him to have a little accident with a fireball in the elevator. That girl he was with turned out to be Sailor Moon and foiled that attempt and caught up with me on the top floor, where we are now. I told him that we would fight fair and square for the nijizuishou and that Sailor Moon would be safe. I hadn't forgotten Beryl's orders and when he stepped forward I conjured a huge ice crystal and aimed it towards Sailor Moon's back. I am not sure what happened, I must have over estimated the speed and distance because it flew passed her and buried itself in Tuxedo Kamen's back. Sailor Moon started bawling and the nijizuishou were drawn to her. They again became the ginzuishou and Sailor Moon turned into Princess Serenity from the Moon Kingdom."

"And then when you returned to the Dark Kingdom, Beryl killed you as punishment for stabbing Tuxedo Kamen" Jadeite finished as if sensing that the final part in this tale was too painful for either king to relive again.

Zoisite nodded, "So why are we here?" his eyes searched the remaining kings for answers to questions that none of them knew the answers too. "How did Beryl defeat the ginzuishou?" Zoisite continued, talking to himself more so than the others "I felt its power... there was no way that Beryl could have fought back against it."

To understand what was and what will be you must understand the past. Why were you reborn? If you truly seek the answer then it shall be so. The heart of the Princess was strong but the hatred of Beryl was stronger. If hatred can triumph over love then was this world really worth saving? The answers you seek shall soon be revealed but first you must learn why you came into being... to do that we look at the past and the future of this world had Princess Serenity lived...

* * *

King Endymion had ruled over the Earth for many years. As these years rolled by he had watched the cold desolate place that the Earth had been at the beginning of mankind's birth flourish into unsurpassed natural beauty. The volcanic lands to the North had turned into rolling green hills just right for shepherds to graze their flocks upon. Mountains formed, pushing up great masses of snow and ice to the South. To the East deserts were created, dusty dry places with little chance of supporting life for a length of time but just right for animals such as snakes and rodents to become in abundance. To the West woods became rainforests; places where true beauty could be found in the animal kingdom. King Endymion loved this world that he had witnessed grow into this brilliance that one day his child would inherit. Yet the man was troubled. His son was but two years old and already there were people upon Earth who were growing to hate the royal court and the leadership of their king. They were jealous of Endymion's friendship with the people of the Moon, the guardians of Earth who had given life to the planet that they now watched from afar. The people of the Moon Kingdom lived prolonged and happy lives whilst the people of Earth lived in poverty and suffering and often died before they could reach old age. This resentment was being used by a kingdom in another dimension that sought power and glory and worst of all the destruction of the Earth's creators... the people of the Moon.

King Endymion was a troubled man. He was old, his black hair already sporting mars of grey and indeed his handsome face now bore worried lines of age. He had problems walking long distances and his vision was poor, yet he was only 45. Endymion doubted that he would see his son, Mamoru, grow into a man and was anxious that before he died the throne was secured for his son to rule over the Earth as he had done. Having lost the Queen in childbirth Endymion had servants raise the boy. He regretted not spending enough time with him but he had to concern himself with the more important matters of securing the throne.

Endymion sat in his favourite place in the entire kingdom, at the base of Mt. Shumisen. The mountain was a place of natural beauty but yet it was not this that drew Endymion to this place. Mt. Shumisen also had religious meanings on Earth. It was thought to be the gateway between the heavens and Earth, protected by the legendary guardians of Earth, the Shitennou; the four heavenly kings. The Shitennou were said to guard the four points of the world. Bishamon, the leader of the four was also one of the 12 Devas and was the most powerful of the four. He guarded the North and was said to be all knowing and knew of everything that went on in the kingdom. Bishamon ruled over winter and when winters in the kingdom were particularly harsh the servants would whisper that they had done something to anger the God of the North.

Jikoku was the guardian of the East and ruled over the spring. He was said to maintain and protect the world, defending its life forms and beauty. The armies he commanded were said to protect the Dharma.

Zocho, the guardian of the South was said to have healing powers and was able to relieve mortals of their pain and suffering and humans were known to take their dying to Mt. Shumisen and pray to the God asking him to heal their loved ones.

Komoku was the guardian of the West. It was said that every time a human committed a sin, Komoku would take note and they would answer to him in the after life for punishment. The God who controlled the autumn was also said to be able to control the tides, his armies directing the flows of the rivers and seas. If angered, Komoku would turn the tides upon villages, to cleanse evil from the world.

It was to these legendary kings that Endymion prayed too now. He prayed that they would help him to find a way to secure his son's throne.

The old king sat a while, staring up at the white expanse of the mountain before him as if searching for a sign.

Bishamon, Jikoku, Komoku and Zocho were Gods who chose to reside on the Earth, staying to protect their master, Taisyaku, the God of the Centre who dwelt at the top of Mt. Shumisen. Taisyaku was the mightiest of Gods, Endymion thought to himself, in need of the protection of the four kings to secure his reign above all.

The answer came to him as he sat, the breeze whispering through the trees bringing the scent of Sakura petals to his nostrils. Mamoru, the future King Endymion of Earth, would grow up into a court that no longer wanted him, no longer trusted him and perhaps would want to harm him. He needed protectors as Taisyaku had. He needed his own Shitennou. The ones who would guard over the four points of the kingdom, Europe, the Americas, the Middle and Far East and who would also help strengthen the alliance with the people of the Moon Kingdom. The problem lay in where to find such men who could protect his son. Endymion stood, the blood rushing back into his legs as he started back towards the palace. He would have to start searching straight away for men worthy of the honour he would bestow upon them.

* * *

For weeks the king shut himself off from the court and indeed his own son. All he could think of was locating the four heavenly kings of the Earth realm as quickly as possible; aware that every breath he took could well be his last. Weeks turned into months and soon Endymion began to despair. Was there no one in the entire kingdom worthy of such a responsibility?

Endymion, after one such day of fruitless research of kings from other lands, took a short leave from his searches to greet a king from a neighbouring kingdom. With the threat of war, Endymion's advisers had thought it wise to strengthen alliances with royalty from other lands as well as the people of the Moon. King Tamasu was from a neighbouring kingdom, Galisae. Galisae was a small kingdom; barely 2,000 men in their army and it had no heir to speak of. Galisae was a cold, snowy place and was well known for its freezing artic winters. Endymion had never visited Galisae before and indeed he had never made the effort to speak with King Tamasu... until now.

After the formal greetings Endymion spent the remainder of the day speaking with Tamasu of the threat from the Dark Kingdom. Galisae was already under attack from Youma troops, it would seem the Queen's of the Darkness were testing the hearts of its people for signs of weakness.

"She has corrupted all with magical abilities for her own purposes" Tamasu confided in the Earth king. Tamasu looked to same as his subjects. All Galisians were tall, well muscled, had bronzed skin, silvery-white hair and pale grey-blue eyes. Age had not treated Tamasu kindly. His face bore even more lines of age and his silvery hair had lost its shine long ago. He walked with a stoop and his voice quavered when he spoke. He leaned heavily on a walking stick as they continued their tour of the palace gardens.

"We have but one left" Tamasu gestured to his court behind him. "I bring him here with the request that he be left in your care, as a agreement of our alliance with you."

Endymion shook his head "I cannot accept slavery as a signature of alliance. It would be most improper for myself to accept as it is for you to offer."

Tamasu smiled, adding yet more lines to his withered face "You mistake me your majesty. He is only 12 years old. His family were killed during the fighting. I understand that he will be well looked after here."

Endymion was intrigued and saddened for the child but he was not running a royal orphanage! He already had the Mercurian orphan in his care as it was! Of course that was at the insistence of his son, who had taken a liking to the child.

Tamasu, seeing that the man was hesitating added "He has great potential in the magical department. He was far more advanced than men twice his age. With training I believe he could become a master mage."

A master mage? A valuable asset in the coming war, Endymion had to agree.

"Very well" he nodded, "Allow me to meet this gifted child."

"Of course" Tamasu smiled and turned to his court. They stepped aside to reveal the child though at first glance Endymion would not think him to be so. He was taller than his years, again his appearance was typical to a Galisian, and he sported the same long pure white hair and cool grey eyes. He did not seem afraid as he approached the kings, pausing in front of them and lowered his head, as was custom.

"I hope that one day Kunzite will become an invaluable ally to your forces your majesty" Tamasu said as Endymion marvelled at the coldness, the superiority and power of the boy in front of him. He looked up, meeting Endymion's gaze. Endymion stared back, waiting for the contact to waver. It did not and Endymion knew that he had found the first of his four kings.

"His training shall commence immediately" the king of the Earth decided, "Only the best for him for he is our gift from King Tamasu and the Galisians and will be treated as a Prince."

Endymion then made his leave, pausing only at the royal nursery where Mamoru lay sleeping. Planting a soft kiss on the boy's forehead his father whispered, "I have found the first my little one."

* * *

They say that bad luck comes in threes and true that could be said of good luck too. A month after Kunzite had come to the palace Endymion found the second of the four kings. It had been at the training grounds. Endymion had been present, wanting to see how Kunzite's training progressed. Of course the wily king had not once let slip to anyone, not even Kunzite himself, what all this training was in aid of though he was sure that Kunzite had some inkling of what this was all about, the boy was older than his years and often knew what the king was thinking.

Endymion observed quietly, as did several other members of his court, as Kunzite hit each target in succession with his energy swords without mishap. The boy was cold, calculating and according to his teacher, rarely spoke word and if he did it was cryptic and was rarely understood. Already he is quite powerful, Endymion mused. He has definitely earned the title that will be bestowed upon him once the other kings are found.

Kunzite, finished with target practicing made his way over to the king, despite his superior attitude to most in the court he was always gracious and well mannered in front of Endymion and the king had hoped that in time Kunzite would come to see him as a father figure of sorts. The boy had never spoken a word regarding his dead parents. As Endymion commented on Kunzite's skills the boy suddenly turned, just as a group of wine merchants exited through the oak double doors of the palace and started down the winding pathway leaving the grounds. The king followed Kunzite's gaze, not recognising this particular group of travelling men.

"They are from Visus, the forth planet in the second star system your majesty" Kunzite spoke, again reading what his king was thinking, "The one you seek is with them."

"The one I seek?" Endymion whispered, aware that he was suddenly breathless. "The one I seek?"

He followed Kunzite's gaze, it rested upon a small boy nestled between two men. He appeared to be only nine years old, a thick mass of curly auburn hair tumbling down his back. The boy tugged, almost nervously on the ends of this brown mane as he walked, his azure blue eyes darting from the grown-ups and back to the load he was carrying.

"A slave" Endymion felt disgust rising in the pit of his stomach, as did a wave of nausea. The Visuians were known to steal children from Earth and put them into slavery against their will and then have the audacity to bring the children back to Earth with their masters and sell fine wines and cloths to members of Endymion's court. The Earth, despite this, had an uneasy alliance with Visus's Queen, Lady Athena, and thus nothing could be done for fear of war.

"He is the one you are searching for" Kunzite repeated softly, "He is the second heavenly king."

Endymion started at this but was aware of the wine merchants leaving and knew he would have to act quickly if he were to believe Kunzite. He glanced again at the Galisian and knew Kunzite spoke the truth. Summoning a servant Endymion said: "I will grant them a contract to supply wine to the palace for a year and a million yen in cash if they permit the release, into my care, that boy."

The servant couldn't help but stare, surprised at Endymion's compassion. This would now be the third child he had taken into his care. Still it was an order from their king and would not be disobeyed.

A few minutes later the boy was kneeling down before Endymion, his hair flopping forward into his eyes, making it impossible for him to see.

Endymion smiled, noting even approval in Kunzite's eyes. The king dismissed the court and servants and knelt down beside the boy, entangling a hand in the auburn mane and tucking it back behind his ears.

"What is your name little one?"

"N-Nephrite your majesty"

"Nephrite" Endymion repeated.

"Tell the king what happens when you gaze up at the night sky" Kunzite spoke, already himself knowing the answer.

Nephrite smiled shyly and looked up "I talk to the stars."

* * *

It was a few months later that Endymion located the third heavenly king. Kunzite and Nephrite's training was progressing well and they seemed to get along most of the time. It turned out that Nephrite, like Kunzite, was a very self-assured confident child who had been forced into slavery when his parents died, so like Kunzite, he was an orphan.

Endymion, as part of his campaign to secure a hold on the throne, was visiting some local villages and had suggested to his court that they might like to hire some of the village folk as servants and farm hands in a bid to increase his popularity among his fellow man. As soon as Kunzite heard of this trip he requested that he come along. Endymion had learned by now that Kunzite seldom made requests unless it was something important and conceded that both Kunzite and Nephrite should accompany him.

The first half of the morning was fairly uneventful and thus slightly disappointing for the king. So far Kunzite had said nothing to indicate that the third king was nearby and Endymion did not press the boy. Perhaps Kunzite simply wanted to accompany them, through Endymion doubted it. Kunzite had never shown any sign of wanting, needing anyone or anything. Nephrite too was reserved but still found time to speak to the children from the village. They seemed to take an immediate liking to the nine year old. It was his easygoing mannerisms and open smile Endymion thought to himself trying to hide his disappointment from all around him.

Finally they stopped for lunch at the mayor's house. It was a cosy house on the foot of a hill, decorated in imitation marble that reflected the sun's glare. As they entered the house a woman in her early thirties greeted them. She had long blond hair which was tied up into a neat bun atop her head. Her blues eyes sparkled as she greeted her royal guests. She was still smiling as she led them into a small dining room which like the rest of the house was small yet cosy. A small fire burned in one corner of the room, near a mahogany table which was set for lunch. Endymion said nothing as they sat down and the woman, the mayor's wife he assumed, poured wine from a bottle and soft drinks for the children. The mayor whispered something to her and her delicate face blushed bright red as the maid brought in the meal. She quickly hid this and replied, loud enough for Endymion to overhear:

"I am sure his majesty does not want to be bothered with that."

"Bothered with what?" Endymion inquired, something was telling him to pursue this conversation. Again the woman blushed and hurried back into the kitchen. When she returned she was not alone. A small boy only six years old clung to her apron, keeping his head buried in the cloth rather than face the dinner guests. The woman ruffled the blond head and turned nervously to the king.

"This is our son Jadeite and he..." she laughed and shook her head, "I do not wish to trouble you your majesty. It is but a little problem."

"He creates images that are not real, illusions he calls them" the mayor broke in, "I just don't know what to do with the boy anymore. Last week he created an illusion of a fire and panicked the entire village. Because of it they are branding my wife a witch and him a child of Satan. The election is in a few days time and I can't afford to lose. Me being the mayor is the only way I can protect my family."

Endymion nodded, knowing he had found the third king. "We shall take him to the palace. He will be perfectly safe from harm there. I have a training programme in place for those like him. We can teach him to get a control over his powers and better them."

"You would do that for us?" the woman whispered, tears shining in her eyes. Endymion smiled and nodded.

"Thank you your majesty" she whispered, "I can't ever repay you for your kindness but if there is anything, anything at all we can do for you or your court..."

Endymion held up a hand to silence the woman "I do not wish for you to be in my debt. The boy is what matters."

She nodded, again thanking him as tears of joy streamed down her face.

"Come now" Endymion continued, "Dry your tears and let us finish our meal."

* * *

The meal was pleasant, Endymion decided, gingerly wiping his mouth with the white napkin he was offered. Feeling rather full and wondering if the alcohol had gone to his head he suggested that they call it a day. Unfortunately this ensured a problem. The woman followed them outside, her son in her arms as she whispered goodbyes and set him down by the waiting carriage. Jadeite took one look at it and the waiting horsemen and raced back into his mother's arms and started to cry. Embarrassed and tearful she attempted to prize him off of her to no avail.

Endymion truly hated to be a cause of this scene and quietly suggested that perhaps they should leave the boy be after all. At this his mother cried even more and forcefully shoved her son away. Jadeite sprawled back onto the gravel floor and started screaming as his mother fled back into the house and slammed the door. Endymion snapped at a waiting servant girl to gather the child before getting into the carriage. Kunzite and Nephrite followed, Nephrite pausing just once to gaze at the struggling child. He did not understand Endymion thought and decided to offer no explanation. Jadeite would be all right once they reached the palace...

"Can't you do anything?" Endymion shouted at the nursemaid, struggling to make himself heard over the boy's sobs.

"I have tried," she shouted back, resisting the urge to cover her ears. "All he does is cry for hours. He refused dinner and threw the plate into the wall."

Endymion sighed and rose from his throne. This was no good. The boy was too young and his mother had most probably wrapped him in cotton wool for the majority of his short life. Motioning for Kunzite and Nephrite to accompany him, Endymion opened the door to Jadeite's bedroom. The boy lay on the oak wood bed, his face buried in the satin pillows, sobs racking his small frame. Every so often Endymion could make out the odd word 'Mommy' or 'Daddy'. He felt some guilt rising inside of him. Jadeite was not an orphan like the others. He had parents who loved him and Endymion had taken him away from all of that and offered no explanation as too why.

"Perhaps you should explain" Kunzite spoke, again guessing the king's thoughts.

"I wish to wait" Endymion replied, "Until the last king is found."

"He cannot continue to cry like this. It is not healthy"

"I know" Endymion snapped, sometimes he forgot that Kunzite was only 12 years old. The way the boy spoke he could have been a lot older.

Making a decision Endymion approached the bed, gently resting a hand upon the sobbing child's back.

"Jadeite? Please stop this. I know you must be frightened but we only want to help you. You are not like other children. Please stop crying so I can talk to you."

The boy sniffed slightly, rolling onto his back, his eyes and skin red, tears straining his cheeks. He sobbed again but his gaze had wandered to the boys behind the king.

"W-who are you? What do you want? Please... I want to go home."

"I know" Endymion said softly, before he could start crying again, "Your mother told me about those illusions you can create. I must say I am impressed by them. You must be very special."

This earned a shy smile from the blond boy. "Mommy said so too. She always said I was special."

"That is why she sent you here" Endymion continued, still speaking in a low voice so not to frighten the child more "She wanted you to learn how to make more of those illusions and how to use your powers properly. She wants what is best for you and I know she would hate to see you upset."

"I want Mommy" Jadeite sniffed, "I want to go home."

Endymion smiled, "I know. How about I arrange for your parents to come and visit you here tomorrow? You can show them your room." Endymion gestured around him. "Would you like that?"

"So... so you'll help me make more illusions and stuff?"

"Yes. You will be working with Kunzite and Nephrite. They have special abilities like you."

Jadeite looked up at the older boys, a small smile playing on his lips. "And Mommy can come and visit tomorrow?"

"Of course" Endymion replied, "Now come with me. There is someone I would like you too meet."

He held out his hand. After a moments hesitation Jadeite took the palm offered and Endymion led him down the corridor to the royal chambers, where Prince Mamoru slept. Miraculously the young prince was still sleeping even though Jadeite's cries had woken nearly everyone else in the palace.

"This is my son" Endymion said softly, gesturing for Kunzite and Nephrite to come closer to see the two year old lying under a heap of blue blankets. "Prince Mamoru will become king after I die. He will be the future King Endymion. You have also been brought here because I will not be around to protect him from those who wish him harm. With your special powers you can guard over him when I am gone. It is a great honour for any man to have. Will you protect him for me Jadeite?"

The blond gazed down at the sleeping prince and nodded "I will" he replied just as Nephrite and Kunzite too promised to offer their protection to the future king.

Endymion drew back as the three watched over his son. Three of the kings were gathered. Now all he needed was the forth and Mamoru's future would be secure. If only he knew where to look...

Three years later

"Ow! Stop it Madeline you're hurting me!"

Endymion looked up from his readings when his son's nanny burst into his study, hauling another boy in by his arm. The child only six years old was struggling and landed a well-aimed kick to Madeline's shins, causing her to release him.

"I caught him trying to steal a tub of ice cream from the royal ice box." Madeline huffed, glaring daggers at the pouting child.

"Is this true?" Endymion demanded of the boy.

He pouted and refused to look the king in the face. Endymion sighed; this one was more trouble than he was worth at times. He decided to punish him anyway when the study door opened again and Mamoru entered. He had been running, the front of his blue tunic was torn and he was a little out of breath. Panting he stopped in front of his father and said:

"Daddy! Please don't punish Zoisite. It wasn't his fault! I wanted an extra helping of ice cream at lunch and that meanie cook told me I couldn't so Zoisite promised to get me some!"

Endymion sighed again and glanced between his son, his big blue eyes looking pleadingly at his father and then that of the sulking coppery haired child beside him. Such ridiculously long hair, Endymion thought as he gazed upon him. Why does he refuse to cut it? Zoisite saw he was being stared at and narrowed his emerald green eyes further, folding his arms across his chest.

"Is this true Zoisite? Did you promise to get the ice cream for Mamoru?"

Zoisite cast a glance at Mamoru, confirming Endymion's suspicions that Zoisite simply wanted some more, had got caught and now Mamoru was trying to save his friend from a beating. Still Endymion could deny his son nothing and when Zoisite nodded, he said "Very well but if this happens again I will have to punish you both. Stealing is wrong."

"Yes daddy, we're sorry aren't we Zoisite?"

"I suppose so" Zoisite did not look in the least bit sorry. Endymion shook his head as Madeline ushered them from the room, shouting at them for disturbing Endymion's study time as she did so.

Zoisite was trouble from the beginning Endymion thought ruefully. Right from the day he met Mamoru they had been inseparable. Mamoru was an innocent, sweet little boy who was sadly led astray far too easily. Zoisite had a nasty temper and a nasty attitude. A servant had found him at the palace gates when he was three years old, cold and sobbing. Unable to ascertain where his parents were Endymion had agreed that he could stay the night and in the morning he would be handed over to the local orphanage. Endymion made the mistake of allowing the child to share a room with his son for the night. When his servants came to collect Zoisite the next morning Mamoru was excited, babbling away that he had made a new friend and requested that Zoisite come to live at the palace. Mamoru had always had trouble making friends due to his shyness and Endymion was fool enough to agree to his son's pleas. From the moment that was decided Zoisite started causing trouble in one way or another. He was thought to be a Mercurian, Mercurians were well known and liked throughout the galaxy due to their understanding nature and intellect and true Zoisite was intelligent but he used this intellect to get into all kinds of trouble and the ice cream incident had been the third of its kind this week. Mamoru cared a lot for his friend and frequently tried to take the blame as Zoisite was more often than not caught red handed. Endymion worried that the child would lead Mamoru into some serious trouble one day and had instructed Kunzite, now fifteen and 10 years ahead of anyone else in the castle when it came to magical abilities, to keep an eye on them, unknown to the children that was. Still they managed to even give the leader of the kings the slip occasionally and today, Endymion felt was going to be the same. He sighed for a third time and leaned back in his chair, his eyes drifting closed. He slept more nowadays as it was... he needn't worry himself with the children. Kunzite would watch over them.

* * *

Mamoru followed his friend through the gardens, silently listening to him rage, not sure what to do about the vicious temper of the small boy.

"Who the hell does she think she is?" Zoisite sneered, referring to their nanny "If I wanna tub of ice cream then I can have a tub of ice cream. And you're the Prince of the Earth" he added ruefully, pausing under a Sakura tree to gaze at Mamoru, his green eyes narrowing in subdued anger "All ya hafta do is tell 'em that you order it and it will be so."

Mamoru shrugged, "I never liked ice cream anyways Zoi-chan."

Zoisite scowled, pushing some stray wisps of hair back from his eyes he muttered, "And you didn't have to take the blame for me either. I can look after myself."

Mamoru sniffed, tears filling his blue eyes "I know but I worry 'bout ya Zoi-chan. I don't want anything to happen to you."

Zoisite's angry expression softened and he smiled, "I know and I worry 'bout you too Mamo-chan but there is really no need to worry about me..." he paused and looked around the gardens. They were more or less deserted. Mamoru could see Nephrite and Jadeite in the training grounds, practicing as usual. Mamoru gazed sadly at the two boys. It was a shame that his daddy made them train so hard to master their powers. He would have liked some more friends to play with.

"Mamo-chan don't look so sad" Zoisite giggled, "Look what I can do!" he raised a hand and a flurry of Sakura petals fluttered from his fingertips and landed at the young Prince's feet.

"Hey that's neat!" Mamoru clapped his hands together and giggled as well as Zoisite created more of the pink petals. "When did ya learn to do that Zoi-chan?"

Zoisite shrugged, "I don't know. I was bored yesterday when your daddy made ya study and it just happened. It's neat isn't it?"

"Yeah it's cool!"

Zoisite grinned and did a similar display again, this time the petals turned into ice crystals as they fell to the ground. Mamoru laughed and watched a few more demonstrations with the ice and petals.

"But ya can't tell anyone" Zoisite said softly, "It can be our secret ok?"

Mamoru nodded, agreeing with his friend. If he told his daddy then Endymion might make Zoisite train with the others and he would lose his only friend.

"There's something else I can do too," Zoisite added, lowering his voice to a whisper, "I've been able to do it ever since... well forever."

"Don't worry Zoi-chan" Mamoru smiled shyly once the words were uttered between them, "Your secret's safe with me."

A week later

Mamoru hung back as the guards raced down the hallways, clinging onto his father's tunic with one hand, the other nervously playing with the end of his cape. What was going on? A Youma attack, the guards had said. Of course that couldn't be true... could it? His daddy said that Youma were slow, stupid beasts and could not possible get through the palace security yet his father was barking out orders to the guards. Mamoru looked around as he was pulled down the corridor. Jadeite was following them. His gaze darting between the sea of men as if looking for someone. When they reached his study, Endymion set his son down in a chair.

"Stay here" he commanded as he crossed the room towards Jadeite. Mamoru listened intently, determined to find out what was happening.

"Did you find them?" his father was asking.

Jadeite shook his head miserably and to that Endymion cursed softly and kicked a chair across the room. It clattered loudly, breaking upon impact with the wall. Mamoru sniffed, clutching the arms of the chair as tears prickled the backs of his eyelids. He hated it when his father was angry.

"It's ok" Jadeite sensed his distress and came over to him, wrapping an arm around his shoulders and drawing him into a hug. Mamoru was grateful for the nine year olds compassion and snuggled into the arms. He had come to see his three protectors as older brothers after all he had known them nearly all his life.

Then the door burst open again and Nephrite entered. The twelve year old slammed the door and set down his struggling passenger. Zoisite stamped purposefully on Nephrite's foot and stalked over to where Mamoru and Jadeite were, pouting furiously. He had hated Nephrite with a passion since the day they met. Mamoru, too young to understand that Zoisite felt threatened by the other children, smiled shyly at him as Zoisite seated himself in a chair.

"Nephrite?" Endymion demanded, "What happened?"

"The Youma is down" Nephrite replied, choosing his words carefully in front of the younger boys "Kunzite got it."

Endymion sighed in relief, wondering how a dumb Youma could circumvent the palace security. Perhaps the Dark Kingdom was using this as a test of sorts. If so then it was a worrying development indeed and Endymion knew he would have to do something to strengthen their ties with the Moon Kingdom before it was too late.

"Where is Kunzite?" he demanded of Nephrite, turning his attention to the more pressing matter in front of him.

"Like I said he got the Youma" Nephrite paused, taking a sharp breath and glancing back towards the prince before resuming his sentence "It took us by surprise your majesty. Kunzite got it but it managed to get him first. He's hurt pretty badly, or so the palace physician says. They doubt he will last the night."

Endymion inhaled deeply, panic rising inside of him. This was not happening... it couldn't happen. He directed another glance at his son, who by now had sensed that something terrible was wrong and had got up from the chair despite Jadeite's protests for him to stay still.

"Daddy? Where's Kunzite-san?"

Endymion paled, staring at the pair of innocent blue eyes gazing into his own. Kunzite couldn't die... he was relying on the first king, on all of them to protect his son from harm.

"Daddy?" Mamoru repeated, "Did the Youma hurt him?"

Endymion nodded and once more the child's eyes filled with tears "Will he be ok?"

Endymion did not have to answer, he did not need to. Mamoru sobbed. Zoisite stood, stepping tentatively forward to place a comforting hand on his friend's shoulder.

Mamoru glanced up at this contact and a small smile played across his lips "Can we see Kunzite-san, Daddy?"

"I don't know..." Endymion turned to Nephrite. "How bad is it?" he added in a lower voice. The twelve year old shrugged, "He's unconscious your majesty. The Youma caused some internal damage. I don't know."

"Please Daddy" Mamoru begged, grabbing hold of Zoisite's hand "Let Zoi-chan and I see him. We can help him to get better."

"Mamoru..." Endymion started, then his expression softened. They were too young to understand. There would be no harm in giving them a chance to say goodbye.

Instructing Nephrite and Jadeite to follow them, Endymion picked his son up and led them down towards the hospital wing. Madeline was sitting outside on one of the plastic chairs, her eyes red from crying.

"Is he...?"

"He is still alive" she sniffed, the nanny had looked after them all from so early on that she felt as though they were her own.

Endymion hesitated at the door, instructing his son to stay back until called he pushed open the door and entered the room. The smell of disinfectant invaded his nostrils, and he gagged slightly. This movement caused the palace physician to glance up. Her sad smile turned into a frown when Mamoru pushed passed his father, dragging Zoisite with him as they crossed the room towards the bed where the older boy lay. Endymion gasped hurrying after his son but halted when he gazed upon Kunzite. The boy looked as though he was simply sleeping. There were no outward signs of injury.

"Are you sure he will die?" Endymion demanded softly.

The physician nodded, and held up an x-ray "These dark patches here and here show extensive internal bleeding. Nephrite said the Youma knocked him straight through the marble doors of the palace. It is amazing he managed to strike back before it could get inside and do any real damage." She indicated the chart and shook her head "There is no hope."

"Allow us a few moments," Endymion instructed softly. The woman nodded, sensing his want to say goodbye and left, leaving only the king, Nephrite, Jadeite, Mamoru and Zoisite.

Endymion scowled at the coppery haired child. Why was he here? He had never really met Kunzite and yet Mamoru was pulling Zoisite towards the bed. Endymion frowned and turned his attention from the dying king to the words being uttered between the two friends.

"Please Zoi-chan. I know you can do it."

"I dunno. I've only ever healed cuts and bruises before. Endymion-sama said he was dying" Zoisite protested.

"Please Zoi-chan... Kunzite-san is my friend. I don't want him to die." Mamoru's lower lip wobbled and yet more tears filled his eyes.

Zoisite sighed and approached the bed "I'll try" he said as he reached out, Endymion grabbed the child's arm.

"What are you doing?"

"Daddy let him go. Zoi-chan has special powers like Jadeite-san and Nephrite-san. He can save Kunzite-san. He showed me how. I promised to keep it a secret but I don't want Kunzite-san to die." Mamoru whimpered and a tear trickled free, splashing onto the front of his tunic.

"Is this true?" Endymion asked of the boy.

Zoisite nodded and jerked his arm free, once again approaching the white haired boy. Leaning over him he placed a hand upon Kunzite's forehead, the other taking the boy's limp left hand. For a few minutes nothing happened. Zoisite stood quietly at Kunzite's bedside, his eyes slowly closing and suddenly he fell forward, sprawling across Kunzite's chest, just as the older boy opened his eyes.

"Zoi-chan!" Mamoru cried.

Endymion moved forward, gently easing Zoisite off of the bed and into his arms. "It is all right" he whispered, "He is not used to focusing his magics for such a enormous task. I will have a servant take him to his room for the remainder of the day. When they are both feeling better I shall have Kunzite train him personally as he will need to work extra hard to catch up with Jadeite and Nephrite."

At this Zoisite weakly raised his head to gaze at the white haired king lying upon the bed. Their eyes met and Zoisite smiled boyishly before promptly falling asleep in Endymion's arms.

* * *

That night the king mused over the problem of the Dark Kingdom and how to forge a stronger alliance between the Earth and the Moon Kingdom. The physician was astounded at Kunzite's recovery and confirmed that the bleeding had stopped and after a few days rest he would be just fine. Of course Endymion warned the children to keep quiet about the events in the hospital wing to protect Zoisite. It was now apparent that Zoisite was the forth of the kings to guard Mamoru and Endymion was ashamed at how he had treated the child and that he had not noticed Zoisite's magical talents sooner. Still his terrible temper could become a problem, which was why Endymion had decided on allowing Kunzite to train him even though the oldest of the kings was still a student himself. Kunzite was far older than his years and would not tolerate Zoisite's temper and his ice like personality would mean that Zoisite would have trouble quarrelling with him. It was also true that Kunzite was years ahead of Jadeite and Nephrite in the magical department and would be an ideal person to help Zoisite to catch up with his fellow kings.

Still this did not solve the more pressing problem of the alliance. Endymion sighed, snapping shut his textbook and focusing on the last meeting between the Earth Kingdom and the people of the Moon.

Queen Serenity was a fair and pure woman and her beauty could not be rivalled. She was like the goddess in the Greek Mythology, Selene, of whom she was named. Her long white hair trailed almost to the ground in silken waves which matched her white gown. Her face was pale and could have been carved from marble. Her eyes were as blue as the sky's on Earth and her voice as soft as the breeze. Endymion had to admit for a time he had been in love with her, especially after he had read the legends for which she was named.

"Muses, sweet-speaking daughters of Zeus Kronides and mistresses of song, sing next of long-winged Moon!

From her immortal head a heaven-sent glow envelops the Earth and great beauty arises under its radiance.

From her golden crown the dim air is made to glitter as her rays turn night to noon.

Whenever bright Selene, having bathed her beautiful skin in the ocean, put on her shining rainment and harnessed her proud-necked and glittering steeds, swiftly drives them on as their manes play with the evening, dividing the months.

Her great orbit is full and as she waxes a most brilliant light appears in the sky.

Thus to mortals she is a sign and a token"

That was true; to most mortals she was nothing but a myth and a legend, yet to one man she was real. For Selene had fallen in love with a mortal man from Earth, Endymion. Endymion was a simple shepherd and Selene would often come down to the Earth and watch him tending to his flock under the light of the Moon. One day Endymion caught her observing him and he too fell in love with the Eternal Goddess of the Moon. Selene bore Endymion 50 mortal daughters but alas their happiness could not last. Endymion, like all mortals, would age and die. Heart broken at this prospect Selene cast a spell upon her lover, a spell which would allow him to sleep forever, with his Goddess watching over him. Endymion retained his youth and life, enclosed in quartz, sleeping the centuries away with Selene at his side.

Serenity was as pure an angel as the Goddess in the myth and perhaps even more so. Endymion smiled, feeling his eyes drifting closed. That legend always brought him such comfort. If only legends could come true, then all his problems would be solved.

Serenity had a daughter...

Endymion jerked into full wakefulness at this realisation. The Queen of the Moon had given birth to a beautiful baby girl only a year ago. The perfect solution had been staring him in the face and he had only just realised it! Princess Serenity and Mamoru could become betrothed thus united the Moon and Earth forever as one kingdom. The Dark Kingdom could not hope to stand against such a powerful alliance that this would create! Princess Serenity too had guardians; the inner planetary Princesses who would grow up to defend the heir to the Moon Kingdom as Mamoru had the Shitennou. Endymion called for a servant, eager to get the arrangements under way. Mamoru would wed Princess Serenity and his Shitennou would each wed one of the Princesses protecting the Princess. Nothing could break an alliance formed in wedlock, not even the forces of darkness. Endymion smiled, a true smile for the first time in years. Finally his throne would be secured and the Dark Kingdom threat vanquished forever. The Earth and Moon... nothing could stand against the kingdoms now.

The End of Chapter 6 - Goto Chapter 7

Disclaimer: Once again I own nothing - if I did I would not be here but making my ficcies into anime, something that will sadly never happen *cries*

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