The Four Points

Chapter Fourteen: The True Meaning of the Messiah! Saturn's Awakening

© 2006 by Shari


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Nothing, not even the darkness that he was sure was out there could touch him. He floated on the breeze that no longer existed, not even feeling the cold floor beneath him or even the warmth in his hand. He had nothing... his dreams, his loves and his hates. They all meant nothing to him. It was what kept him in this prison, or so he thought.

"Jadeite?" a voice very softly whispering his name. He felt his consciousness returning, it came slowly as though he was being pulled back down into the darkness. He shuddered, tears building up in his tightly closed eyes. He was alone... he had never had anything, anyone... no one cared for him...

"Jadeite?" again that voice, it was louder now, most insistent. It irritated him so and would not stop calling him. He gasped, a warmth spreading throughout his chest. His eyes opened, a reflex action and nothing more. A dazed swirl of colours became faces, people... he knew them all. Haruka-san, Michiru-san, Nephrite, Kunzite... Jadeite's gaze rested a moment longer upon the youngest king kneeling next to him. His gaze then flickered back up to Kunzite. The older king had not gone to Zoisite's aid? He knew. Jadeite exhaled deeply at this. Kunzite knew and now?

"Jadeite?" the voice whispered again. Jadeite looked up, squinting at the huge pair of violet eyes bearing down into his own. He reached up with his free hand and lightly caressed the pale cheek of the girl. Yes she was a girl but she had transformed into something more. Suddenly Jadeite knew what Nephrite saw in that human, Naru. He saw the same thing when he looked into Tomoe Hotaru's eyes.

"I'm sorry," she continued, a tear trickling from one eyes and splashing onto the front of her fuku, "I'm so sorry."

Jadeite wasn't sure what to make of this or the given situation. He stood, wondering groggily what had happened. The last thing he recalled was Zoisite screaming as Mistress 9... what had she been doing? It had been something bad, Jadeite knew and he had put himself between Zoisite and the demon because... because Zoi-chan was Eternal? No, it had been more than that. They had been friends once, Jadeite realised, and could be again if given the chance.

Hotaru stepped back as he got to his feet, unsure of herself she glanced between Uranus and Neptune and then down at the king at her feet. Haruka stepped forward and snatched the cup that lay beside the youngest king. The Senshi were both looking at him as though he was dirt and then they turned away. When Nephrite demanded to know where they were going Michiru simply replied that there was nothing left for them here.

Again Jadeite found himself looking to Kunzite for guidance. The oldest king eyed the retreating Senshi for a few moments and then seemingly making his choice he knelt down and gathered Zoisite up in his arms, cradling the younger man to his chest as though he was a priceless treasure.

"What happened to him?" Jadeite found his voice again and asked.

"We don't know" Nephrite replied for Kunzite, "He needs to rest."

Jadeite studied Kunzite's face, the man seemed quiet... too quiet. It must be the shock, Jadeite reasoned. Yet it appeared more than that. Kunzite was pale. His skin was almost as white as Zoisite's usual complexion. Deciding that commenting on this would result in a haughty remark from the first king, Jadeite suggested that they too might want to get out of here. He was met by agreement from Nephrite and Kunzite but Hotaru hesitated.

"What is it?" Jadeite asked; he was still trying to get used to the array of emotions that surfaced when he stared upon the younger girl.

"When we get out of here" she spoke softly, delicately "When we get out of here I am going to die."

"What?" Jadeite demanded, wondering if he had heard her right. Even the Outer Senshi halted in their tracks.

"This scythe" Hotaru continued, tears glistening in her eyes "It holds the power to destroy entire planets. That is why I am called the Senshi of Ruin. When we leave here I shall use the power of the staff and Silent Glaive to rid the world of this evil. The only way to do that is to destroy this planet so I will do what I have to do."

"No" Haruka whispered, both Senshi took a step forward at this statement, hatred glinting in their eyes, "You will not do that. There is another way."

"How?" was the retort.

"Eternal"

"So now you believe?" Hotaru cried, "You were ready to kill him yourselves and now you look to him for help? He can't fight! You know he can't. Just look at him! If you send him up against Beryl and the same thing will happen! There is no other way to win this war."

"Zoisite will not fight" Kunzite broke in coldly, "This is not his battle."

"See" Hotaru lowered her voice and gripped her scythe all the more tightly, "There is nothing more we can do now. Surely you will see that it is better for the world to be destroyed and have the chance of rebirth than to leave it in the hands of the devil for all eternity? That is my power and as the Messiah of Silence I will use it to save this world."

"And what of the people of Earth? Do we get no say in its fate?" Michiru asked softly.

"No" Hotaru continued to shake as she spoke, "This world is not the place it was before Beryl's armies destroyed the Silver Millennium. The people of Earth turned on their creators and sold the Earth to the devil before. They gave up their right to choose on that day. The world is in my hands now."

"What if we won't let you?"

"You cannot stop me" she turned, taking a tentative step towards the exit when it happened. Jadeite barely realised what had taken place when he heard Hotaru scream as the Outer Senshi's attacks struck, but not their true target. The scythe fell from her hand as Professor Tomoe collapsed, his weakened body not being able to sustain the blast. He was dead before he hit the floor.

* * *

Naru sat at the window in her bedroom... no the room she called her bedroom. The room she had been given when Haruka-san had brought her here.

The stars know everything

A tear slid down her cheek as this echoed in her mind. Nephrite-sama... it had only been four hours and yet it seemed like an eternity. It had been the same the night he died too. Naru had sat at her bedroom window after Sailor Moon took her home and stared up at the stars. He had become nothing more than stardust and floated up to join them that night a little more than a year ago. She had cried so much, so many tears had fallen that night. Naru had never felt so helpless, so powerless and so lost. He had taken everything when he died; she had not lied to him there. Ever since she had laid eyes on 'Sanjouin Masato' at the tennis club, Naru had known that he was the one. Of course when he had made it clear that he wanted her too, Naru had never dreamt that the handsome, young millionaire was simply using her in his ploy to aid the destruction of the world and kill her best friend who just happened to be Sailor Moon. Usagi... it was hard for Naru to imagine her best friend as the champion of love and justice. Still, now that she looked back upon the way Sailor Moon acted, her cries when Nephrite attacked her, her foolish bravery and her tears when Nephrite died, Naru knew deep down that she had known all along and had not wanted to admit it to herself. After Nephrite died, Usagi began to grow distant from Naru. She drifted into a new circle of friends; the school genius Mizuno Ami and the tough school transfer student Kino Makoto. There was also Hino Rei, the temple priestess and the ditzy but beautiful Aino Minako. Of course Naru knew now that they were Sailors Mercury, Jupiter, Mars and Venus. They were all gone. The celestial court and the Princess of the Moon were dead. The true King of the Earth was working along side the demon Queen of the Darkness and the fate of the world rested upon the man responsible for killing Nephrite. It was all such a mess. Naru hid her head in her hands as she felt Umino place a hand on her shoulder. It was he who told her this. Umino... he really was too smart for his own good, Naru thought sadly. Swallowing hard she turned to face him with the words that they both knew would be forthcoming.

"So you do love him" this was a statement from her boyfriend and nothing more. He had resigned himself for these words that tumbled out of his mouth, knowing what the response would be.

"I do."

"Did you love me?"

"I was confused and hurt. You were good to me. I took advantage. I am sorry."

He exhaled and stood, turning his back on her so that she wouldn't see the tears that she knew were falling down his cheeks.

"I'm sorry, Umino but you're not him."

"I know. I knew that day in the arcade when you agreed to go out with me to the Red Man Show and I knew even after that Youma attacked us that I could never be the man you wanted."

"Then why-?"

"You were so lonely. Usagi had her new friends and you were left with nothing. The man you had in your life was gone and I wanted to fill the gap. I always knew it would never last but I had to try. What kind of friend would I had been if I sat back and did nothing?"

This was too much. Naru felt tears soaking her own cheeks as she went to him and wrapped her arms around his shoulders, pressing her face into his shirt. "Umino... thank you."

The boy smiled shyly, a blush rising in his cheeks as he returned the hug. "If you ever need a friend Naru-chan... that's what I would like to be... a friend."

Naru drew back and smiled. "A friend" she repeated. Yes, a friend. Everything was as it should be. Now all that remained was for Nephrite to come back to her.

* * *

Hotaru screamed, her scream shook the building as the scythe clattered loudly to the floor. She dove forward, screaming her father's name as he fell. He was dead, he was dead, HE WAS DEAD! Small tremors shook her body at this, the realisation that he was gone. She drew in a harsh breath and allowed tears to fall from her eyelids and onto the man's pale cheek.

"Papa..."

"Why do you cry?" the harsh questioning of Sailor Uranus tore her from her grief.

"Why? WHY? He was her father!" this was Jadeite. Hotaru felt him kneeling down beside her, pulling her body into his arms. She leaned back against the man. His touch reminded her of the father she had just lost but in a different way. Like Professor Tomoe, she felt safe in his arms but it also stirred other feelings inside of her. Hotaru felt her breathing start to become heavier. Her papa had never made her feel this way before. No... this was not her papa, she reminded herself, this was Jadeite-san.

"You were going to kill us all" Uranus continued, "Isn't that what you were born for? You were going to use the Silent Glaive to destroy this world without a thought and you dare cry over the death of one man?"

Hotaru couldn't speak. For a few seconds she had let the Messiah take over. She had forgotten her true purpose. She had forgotten the meanings of her dreams when she was a child and before her awakening. Eternal... the Princess of the Moon stood tall atop an icy precipice, her new transformation lighting up the world with the serenity and purity of her being. The angel had fallen... as Hotaru predicted she would... she fell and evil manifested itself on this planet. Yet Eternal was not gone. The girl raised her head and stared at Zoisite.

"You will fight," she whispered. To this he shook his head and pressed back against his lover, ignoring this cowardice, Hotaru continued, "You will fight to save this world."

"Use the Silent Glaive" Kunzite replied, "You were going to do it before. Use it and save your precious planet."

Hotaru once again looked up at Jadeite and shook her head, "I let the power inside of me take over. It was strong but I too am strong. I will help forge a new path, a new destiny for this world but I will destroy it. There are other ways to win."

At this Uranus and Neptune stepped forward. Hotaru struggled from Jadeite's arms and also stepped forward to meet them halfway.

"We will work together," Neptune offered, her aqua eyes casting a downward glance to Professor Tomoe's corpse, "If you can forgive us."

Hotaru nodded, a tear slipping free and rolling down her cheek. Uranus reached up and brushed it away, "Together" she echoed, "Together we will take back this world."

Hotaru smiled, at last they agreed. They would fight together... and they would win. At this her legs buckled. She fell to her knees, eyes sliding closed as her transformation became purple ribbons around her body and seconds later nothing more, the power of Silence was spent for now... and Sailor Saturn would rest until she was needed again.

* * *

He drifted in and out of consciousness, his mind disjointing from the body that was nothing more than an instrument of pleasure to his Queen. He could still feel his lips pressed against her's. He could still feel her fangs biting his lower lip and the overwhelming pleasure that this act alone had given him. That was what he had lived for. He lived to serve his Queen to every meaning of the word. There was nothing else... or was there?

Mamoru woke with a start and even before he could become accustomed to his surroundings he felt bile rising in his throat. He lurched and then doubled over as the returning memories struck him like a punch in the gut. Gods... what had he become? Images of Beryl beneath him, Sailor Moon's beautiful cerulean blue eyes silently pleading with him to remember her whilst tears marred her face, himself laughing in the aftermath when Beryl divulged to tell him what had happened to the Princess of the Moon Kingdom, a Princess that he had loved. Serenity... Usagi... Mamoru felt tears pouring forth now as he lay, panting beside a pool of vomit that represented his disgust, loathing and ultimate despair of what he had done. He had nothing now... If that was so then how was it that he had been freed from Beryl's control? Ignoring the continued nausea, Mamoru struggled to remember the happenings of the past twenty-four hours.

The dagger was shrinking, melting into the floor until all that was left was a burning ball of silver light.

"The ginzuishou" Endymion breathed, "The illusionary ginzuishou?"

Beryl had thought it lost to them that day in the throne room. Zoisite had it all along? Endymion reached out, his hand closing around the light. As he did so the light became brighter. Endymion howled in pain as he was thrown back across the room, his head striking stone, he fell to the floor as the light washed over his body. Then unconsciousness claimed him.

The ginzuishou had healed him. Mamoru was stunned at this. He did not deserve to be healed. He had betrayed everything his father had fought so hard for him to obtain in the future. He betrayed his planet, his lover and then his guardians. Even Nephrite had abandoned him. No, that was not true either. Mamoru could see them standing before him and yet they could not see him. Indeed he could make out words uttered between them. Nephrite was looking for him and as hard as Mamoru tried he could not make him see him. They thought he had gone, escaped when Professor Tomoe died. An invisible wall prevented him from reaching them. Beryl was protecting her interests, Mamoru realised bitterly, and then she would come after them. Zoisite had the power to save the world and he would not. He was afraid; as Mamoru had been when he first discovered that he was Tuxedo Kamen. No, this was different. Mamoru sank back down, knowing what he would do. There was no point in fighting Beryl's spells; even Kunzite was powerless against them. Mamoru watched them leave, Jadeite cradling Tomoe Hotaru in his arms and Zoisite leaning heavily against his lover. Kunzite looked tired, Nephrite seemed defeated and only the Sailor Senshi seemed to have any sort of determination upon their faces. They would fight for this planet Mamoru knew this now. All he had to do was wait, but a war could not be won by bravery alone. No, Beryl would do anything within her power to destroy them all. Her powers were infinite. Becoming the Prince of Earth would not help win the war. His Shitennou would not welcome him with open arms, too much had gone on between them, too many lies spoken and too many broken promises. Yet, Mamoru still held out a thin hope that they might one day be able to forgive him and that he could set them free from the guise that would once again bind them to the throne if he ever sat upon it again. Mamoru had a new purpose now. Perhaps if he could get to Beryl, find out what she was planning and then maybe he could protect them, as he should have done. Beryl would send someone for him.

"Endymion?" even as this thought was processed; Mamoru heard his old name being spoken. The ground opened up and the darkness slid through like blood trickling through a wound. It licked at his feet and for a second he was afraid that it would realise the truth. Slowly it writhed its way up his waist and became a hand caressing his cheek. Mamoru shuddered and then prayed that his disgust was not detected. The Queen's shadow placed a soft kiss upon his lips and then withdrew to whisper in his ear:

"Endymion... you failed to capture the Grail and the traitor, Zoisite. This failure cannot be ignored."

"Forgive me, my Queen" Mamoru knelt down as he felt the darkness take hold and within seconds he was deposited on the stone throne room floor, his face inches from Beryl's feet as she towered above him. "Allow me a short period of grace. I shall retrieve the Shitennou for you and destroy the Sailor Senshi" Mamoru felt sick at these words he spoke. He hated having to humble himself to the bitch who killed Serenity and destroyed his life... the bitch who stole his virginity.

Beryl was not pleased at this act and kicked him hard with a pointed shoe, sending the young prince flying back into the Youma Court. They scattered as she climbed down off of her dais and stalked towards him, a hungry smile licking its way across her lips. Mamoru felt his heart clench as he recalled that look. Beryl uttered a word and her court left, leaving the Prince alone with the demon Queen of the Dark Kingdom.

"I do not wish to hear your excuses" Beryl purred, her grin widening as the gap was closed between them "Why don't you show me how sorry you are?"

Their lips met and Mamoru closed his eyes, his heart praying that Usagi would forgive him.

* * *

When she woke, Hotaru found she was alone. She fought off sleep that threatened to overcome her and sat up. She was in a bed; her bed back at the mansion. How had she got here? Hotaru wondered, a shaking hand reaching up to rub at her fatigued eyes. The Messiah of Silence... she shivered at the silence that fell upon this manse. It was passed midnight. Hotaru had been sleeping for a long time. Her young body trembled as she fingered the duvet atop her and the pulled it up to her chin as she squatted in the middle of this bed. Papa... tears threatened to fall and yet they did not. She was torn between the knowledge that he had loved her enough to save her and the knowledge that if she had not let Saturn take over then he wouldn't have had too. Hotaru closed her eyes; the image of the fallen angel was still as vivid as ever. She didn't want to be alone...

She stood, making an instant decision, she got out of the warm bed, despite her body's protests and slipped on her nightgown. After her transformation had faded she had been left with nothing. A blush rose in her cheeks at this knowledge. The girl paused by the bedroom door. She could hear voices outside. Haruka and Michiru. She did not hate them for what they did. The Senshi of the Outer Solar System were not like the Senshi that had protected Princess Serenity. Uranus and Neptune would have done anything to save the planet and Hotaru knew in her heart that her father would not have survived his injuries; the Daihmon that possessed him had taken everything. If anything the Senshi had given him a quick and painless death.

Hotaru knew where she was going yet she was startled when the door was opened for her. Nephrite. She recognised the auburn haired king by his stance before the light was even flicked on.

"Good, you are still here" was his gruff reply to her silent, questioning gaze.

"Where else would I be?" she enquired.

Nephrite seemed in pain. Hotaru gagged at the smell of scorched flesh that invaded her nostrils. She staggered back into Jadeite's waiting arms whilst demanding to know what had happened.

"Beryl was here" Jadeite replied, whilst running soothing caresses down the back of the younger girl. Hotaru snuggled into his arms and then abruptly pulled away when her face came into contact with the bandages across Jadeite's torso.

"We were lucky to get away so lightly" Nephrite replied for the blond, "That bitch struck before we could even defend ourselves. How the fuck did she find out about this place?"

"Nephrite" Jadeite snapped, seemingly angry at his swearing in front of a girl. The auburn haired man muttered a grudging apology at this.

"What about Haruka-san and Michiru-san?" Hotaru asked softly, "What happened to them?"

"Nothing. Luckily the bitch wasn't intent on killing them or us."

"Then what?" Hotaru broke off, realising what Beryl had been after... who Beryl had been after. "Where is he?" she whispered, tears blurring her eyes as she spoke.

"What good are we to Endymion when we can't even protect one of our own?" Nephrite demanded, not even waiting for a reply he stormed out of the room, slamming the door behind him.

After he left, Hotaru allowed Jadeite to put her back to bed. She needed her rest, he said, as she was still not fully recovered. She even allowed him to plant a tentative kiss to her cheek. She felt herself blushing as he pulled away, his blue eyes filling with some guilt.

"I'm sorry," he murmured, taking a seat upon the edge of her bed as she commanded him.

"For what?" Hotaru did not understand. All she could feel was pain... Her father... her friends. How many more would suffer?

"I shouldn't be here."

"Why?"

"It is not right" he ran a hand through his hair in frustration and stood, "You are only twelve!"

"What does it matter? Naru-chan is only fifteen!"

"There is a huge difference between twelve and fifteen, Hotaru-chan, and Nephrite and Naru go back further than you or I. We weren't even supposed to meet!"

"Well we did" Hotaru's blush deepened, "And we fell in love."

"No we didn't. Having a crush at your age is perfectly natural but that is all it is, a simple crush."

"Then why did you kiss me?"

Jadeite had no answer to this and instead replied with, "I should go. We need to decide what to do now. Haruka and Michiru want to strike against the Dark Kingdom as soon as possible and now that... they will need all the help they can get."

"What about me? Perhaps I should use the Silent Glaive after all?"

"No" was his quick reply.

He does care, Hotaru realised, and he cares more than he will ever admit. Back in the old kingdom this would be acceptable, but not now, not in this new world.

"Haruka wishes for it to be a last resort. That is why you will remain here when the final battle comes. If Beryl kills us we will need your power to save the world."

"And what of Eternal?"

Jadeite, again, had no answer. There was no answer, Hotaru realised bitterly. Eternal... Sailor Moon held amazing power and yet like with all power there came death. Her dreams did not end with Sailor Moon. Hotaru had seen what would become of the one who possessed Sailor Moon's powers. The world would be saved, but only if the ultimate price was paid.

* * *

Kunzite watched, impassively, as Jadeite lifted the limp form of Tomoe Hotaru into his arms, gently wrapping his cape around her to cover her nakedness. Kunzite held his lover in his arms, felt the younger king shaking as Saturn's transformation came undone. Eternal... Kunzite did not want to believe it but he had never felt so much power since his time with Beryl. It was true... and now Kunzite was at a loss. He had hated Sailor Moon with a passion, after all her meddling had helped play a part in what had taken place in the Starlight Tower and ultimately resulting in the death of his lover. This was not Sailor Moon, he reminded himself, this is Zoisite... or is it? Kunzite set the younger king down, aware of his own fatigue creeping over him.

"Where is he? He was right here?" Nephrite was staring in disbelief at the space that the unconscious Endymion had occupied moments before Hotaru's awakening.

The white haired king had no desire to look for Endymion. His Prince had almost cost him Zoisite twice now. Yes, even after all that had happened Kunzite still wanted the little man and a part of him hated himself for it. He did not know if he could bear wanting a man who no longer wanted him.

"We should go" Jadeite voiced his protests when Nephrite announced that they should look for the missing Prince. "Hotaru needs to rest."

"What of Endymion-sama? Are we just going to leave him here?"

"Why not?" this was Zoisite. He had found his voice at last it would seem. Hatred blazed in his eyes as he spoke of the caped man, "Why should we rescue him?"

"Why? WHY? He is our Prince."

"He is your Prince. You can have that responsibility to him if you like, just leave us out of it."

"That's right. Just turn your back on everything as usual! You are nothing but a coward!"

"I know! I'm not strong... I'm not strong like you, I'm not that strong!"

Kunzite briefly recalled Nephrite's resolve to give Zoisite understanding and almost smiled when he realised that Nephrite showing Zoisite compassion was, in practice, as realistic as him giving up drink. Yet he was stunned when Zoisite opened a portal and fled through it, without any warning, leaving only a harmless trail of Sakura petals in his wake. None of them had gated since recovering their powers but now looked like a good enough time as any to start. Kunzite reached out with his own magics, a brief second of dizziness blurring his vision as he traced the jump and opened a similar portal and disappeared through it. He reappeared in the mansion, in front of a stunned Umino and Naru. Seconds later Nephrite and Jadeite also appeared, the Senshi followed suit and the portal closed. Wordlessly Naru raced into Nephrite's arms and the auburn haired man held her, whispering words of reassurance. Kunzite raised an eyebrow at this display before turning to the boy, whose knees were shaking at what he had just witnessed and demanded to know where Zoisite had gone. Umino indicated the stairs and Kunzite announced that he would talk to the younger king. Jadeite and the Senshi did nothing to hide their surprise at this and indeed Kunzite was surprised at himself for volunteering. He did not talk about emotions but somewhere inside of him, Kunzite knew that it might not be what he wanted but Zoisite needed this.

Again he went to open a portal but was met by a stronger wave of something... Kunzite staggered slightly, thinking that perhaps he was tired and brushed this sickening feeling off. Ignoring the stares from his fellow kings, Kunzite climbed the stairs and then hurried down the corridor to the room that he and Zoisite had shared. The door, of course, was locked. A couple of well placed kicks, however, and the rusted bolt buckled. Kunzite entered and shut the door behind him. Zoisite was curled up in the middle of the bed, silent tears falling down his cheeks. For a brief second their eyes met before Zoisite turned away, burying his face in his hands.

Wordlessly, Kunzite padded over to the bed and sat down beside his lover, pulling the smaller man into his arms and then leaning back against the headboard. Zoisite did not struggle and tentatively wrapped his arms around Kunzite, leaning his head on his chest.

"Are you alright?" Kunzite enquired softly. This answered by a 'no' and then a small sob.

"Do you want to talk?"

"You couldn't possibly understand, Kunzite-sama."

"You feel trapped. No matter what you do you cannot shake off this feeling inside of you. It eats at you day in and day out. Even at night you are plagued by dreams/nightmares. You try to carry on as normal but it is not the same anymore. What has happened can never be taken back. You want to break down, you want to be strong and no matter how you act you cannot rid yourself of this, you cannot accept it."

Zoisite drew back, stunned amazement reflecting in his tear stained face, "How did you?" he breathed.

Kunzite also took a deep breath, to calm and ready himself for this admission, "I once felt the same type of despair... when you died."

"When I died? But Kunzite-sama, you were so strong... you made my final moments so much more the easier by remaining strong. I was not afraid of leaving you because I knew that you could get over my passing... I even thought that perhaps you did not care for me. I was happy to die in your arms because I knew that you would not grieve for me."

"You were afraid of dying. If I had broken down your passing would have been more painful. How could I allow that? You were still my student, Zoisaito. I had a duty to look after you."

"Then why didn't you save me?"

There, he had asked the one question that had plagued Kunzite ever since that day. He already had his answer, no matter how hollow it sounded to his own ears, "I believed in Beryl. Her hold over me would not allow me to save you, but do not ever think for a moment that I didn't want to."

"I will take responsibility for that" Zoisite repeated his protests that day.

Silence ensured once again until Zoisite broke it by asking, "Is it true? Is it true what Beryl said? Did you really kill yourself?"

Kunzite exhaled loudly, "Yes."

"Why?"

"I felt as you are feeling now."

"Because of me" Zoisite's voice dropped to a hushed whisper, "You shouldn't trouble yourself over me. I am not worth it. Do you know what I did today? Of course you do. You probably cannot stand to look at me."

"You did it because you could see no other way out."

"I am a coward, Nephrite was right" Zoisite grimaced at this, "Gods I can't believe I just said that."

Kunzite felt a smile tug at the corners of his mouth at this. Forcing this down he asked, "What of Eternal? Will you fight?"

"I don't know... I don't know anything anymore, Kunzite-sama. All I want is your forgiveness. I lied when I said I did not love you. I did not want you to be hurt."

Kunzite laughed softly and cupped Zoisite's chin in his hand, "And you think I did not know this? Zoisaito, I-"

Grating laughter echoed around the small room. Kunzite felt darkness cloaking the very air that he breathed and forced him to break off his sentence. He looked up and felt Zoisite's trembling increase when the darkness took shape.

Beryl!

Kunzite stood, pulling Zoisite up with him and then pushing the younger man behind him. Even now he possessed his powers the demon queen still made Kunzite tremble even to look upon her. He knew what Beryl was capable of.

"You..." Zoisite breathed, his voice barely above a whisper, "H-how did you find us here?"

A smirk twisted her face; Beryl was obviously enjoying seeing them so helpless. We are not so helpless, Kunzite thought to himself. Perhaps Beryl remained unaware that he had his powers back? If so then they had a chance, be it a small one.

"When you gated of course" was her reply and Kunzite inwardly cursed. Damn it, Beryl would have been able to trace a gate anywhere in the world! How could he have been so stupid?

Slowly, Kunzite retreated, pushing Zoisite back with him until they were mere inches from the door. All the time, Beryl simply regarded them with a smug expression etched across her face. "You cannot escape" she purred, "And nor can you win." With these words she struck. Red energies lashing out from her staff and rushing towards them. Kunzite tapped into his own powers, throwing up a barrier to absorb the attack. He heard Beryl's scream of rage and felt yet more raw power blasting against his wavering shield. Yes... little by little the blue barrier was flickering and fading in places. Kunzite gritted his teeth, waves of nausea washing over him as he struggled to keep the stronger powers from striking home. He would do what he had to do to protect Zoisite. He would not fail his lover this time.

"Kunzite-sama" over the fury of the Queen he heard his lover crying out and then placing his hands atop Kunzite's own. "Let me help you... I think... I think my powers are strong enough to win..."

"No!" he snarled, ripping his hands from the younger man's grasp "Just run. It's you she wants!"

"I can't!" Zoisite cried as the barrier shattered, it reminded Kunzite of the sounds of a mirror breaking and true tiny blue shards of power splintered around them, almost like rain. As it disintegrated, Kunzite fell, his vision slowly draining at the corners of this sudden loss of power... and something else. He hit the ground, his cheek smashing against the hardened floorboards. He could vaguely make out the shape of Beryl towering above him, arms outstretched as she prepared to deliver a fatal blast of power.

"Kunzite-sa-" Zoisite shrieked and was cut off as the Queen reached out with a hand, a wave of darkness racing towards the little man and wrapping itself around his throat. Zoisite gagged and brought his hands up between the darkness and his neck, barely keeping it from throttling him. The little king fell down beside his lover, his green eyes widening in shock as Beryl pulled him back towards her. Kunzite willed himself to get up, to invoke magics... anything that would save them... nothing... it was though he had lost his powers all over again.

Then the door was flung open. Jadeite and Nephrite stood on the other side, disbelief and horror registering in their eyes as they too prepared to attack the Queen. Beryl whirled round; Zoisite now in her grasp as her staff glowed again. Twin blasts slammed into the remaining kings before they had a chance, hurling them back into the corridor. They crumpled to the ground, unconscious. Beryl turned, facing Kunzite once more, the thrill of such an easy victory dancing in her wild red eyes.

"I will allow you to live for a while longer," she announced and then the room was once again engulfed in light. It blinded the first king and when he could finally see again, Beryl was gone. She had taken Zoisite with her. Kunzite slumped back down, his own strength fading fast as he heard the Senshi come racing up the stairs and Naru's cry of 'Nephrite-sama!' before his eyes slid closed and the darkness claimed him.


The End of Chapter 14 - Goto Chapter 15


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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