The Other Point of View

(Tears of Crystal - Pt.12)

© 1997/2006 by Stayka deyAvemta & Shavana Rhea

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The Senshi materialized on a wide plain that looked somehow familiar. The ground was covered with strangely warped grass and weird flowers, and in the distance they could see dark and uncanny buildings.

"I hate it! I really hate it," SailorMoon whined. "How can they do that to us?"

"They're evil, remember?" SailorMars pointed out.

"I think they are somewhat mentally deficient," SailorVenus grumbled. "Or do you understand what they are up to?"

"But that's obvious," SailorMercury said. "They want to kill Queen Beryl, put Kunzite on the throne, take back the silver crystal and revive this Crystal Kingdom of theirs."

"But they don't seem to agree on that."

"Well, at least it's the main idea. Unfortunately we need the silver crystal as well - to overcome Queen Beryl."

"I still don't know how to use the thing properly," SailorMoon sighed.

"Well, I guess you have to face Queen Beryl, say some formula and then she goes 'poof' and the day is saved," SailorMars suggested.

"And where can I find her?"

"When we finally manage to discover her palace and her audience chamber," SailorMars answered.

"Why can't we just find a map of the Dark Kingdom," SailorMoon moaned. "I have the feeling we don't make any progress at all."

SailorMercury turned on her visor and scanned the area. "I detect an energy source in this direction." She pointed to the misty horizon.

"Then let's go."

When they were well under way, a horde of youma materialized. The attackers were led by a red-haired girl in the usual grey Dark Kingdom uniform, hers with turquoise piping.

"Whom do we have here?" she asked and laughed almost as annoyingly as Zoisite at his best. "Prepare to die, Sailor brats!"

"Waaah! That's Naru," SailorMoon screamed. "What happenened to you?"

"Naru? You seem to mistake me. I'm Celestine, commander of Queen Beryl's strike force." She held out her hand and fired a salvo of dark red energy droplets at the Senshi.

The girls jumped apart and looked shocked at each other.

"We can't attack Naru," SailorMoon whined.

"You could try to heal her," SailorMercury suggested.

"Good idea." The blonde took out her moon sceptre. "Moon Healing Escalation!"

Celestine jumped in the air and evaded the energies SailorMoon directed at her. While she floated up high, she laughed at the pathetic attempt.

"It doesn't work." SailorMoon hung her head and her ponytails wiped the ground.

"I wonder if turning evil means you get an annoying laugh and float around like mad," SailorVenus commented.

"Wonder later, now we have to get out of this alive," SailorMars called out to the blonde Senshi. The youma and Celestine carried on with their attacks and tried to finish off the girls.

"They are too strong! What shall we do now?" SailorMoon whined.

"What about a tactical retreat," SailorMercury suggested. "I'd like to ask Luna or Artemis some things anyway."

They tried to combine their powers to teleport, but were bounced back by a barrier that seemed to surround the Dark Kingdom and hindered any attempts to escape.

Celestine laughed again and shot another ruby energy barrage at them. This time SailorMercury got hit and screamed, when angry burns appeared on her bare arms.

"We have to take the exit at the North Pole," SailorMars said. "Let's go - it should be in that direction." They ran on, while they turned back once in a while and tried to hold the youma at bay with Supreme Thunder, Crescent Beam and Fire Soul.

Finally they reached the end of the cavern system and stood in a blizzard that blew ice crystals and snow around.

"I hate it when it's that cold and the only thing I wear is this scanty Sailor fuku," SailorMoon complained. "We should try to design some more comfortable outfits for our job."

"Shut up! Let's teleport," SailorMars shouted at her.

They barely managed to get back to Tokyo where they materialized in the Hikawa Shrine. SailorMercury collapsed from exhaustion and the pain of her burns.

The girls turned back into their normal seeming and looked after Ami's wounds. They weren't critical, but painful enough, they discovered. Rei cursed.

"Somehow it seems that it's much more difficult to get rid of the Dark Kingdom than expected."

"I still wonder how much of Kunzite's tale is the truth," Ami said weakly.

"I wouldn't trust those evil guys as far as I can throw them," Rei declared.

"It didn't sound as if he only made it up to deceive us, though," Minako remarked with a slight frown.

All eyes turned to the two cats which had stayed in Rei's room during the adventure.

"Luna, how much do you know about the past?" Ami asked the black cat who watched over SailorMoon.

"Not much," she replied.

"Hm. But where can we learn about the past? Who exactly was the Moon Princess and what happened to her in the past?"

The white cat that accompanied SailorVenus jumped onto the blonde girl's lap. "I guess I have to relate you the tale of the Silver Millennium when the Moon Kingdom flourished and the Moon Princess lived."

The Senshi looked curiously at the animal guardian.

"The Silver Millennium was a peaceful time. The Moon Kingdom was ruled by the wise Queen Serenity. It was a time of affluence and love, and everything would have been truly wonderful, when Queen Beryl hadn't brainwashed the Earth people and gathered her forces to attack the Moon. Within a short time the Moon Kingdom was reduced to rubble. In that time Princess Serenity, the Queen's daughter was in love with the Earth prince Endymion who tried to warn the Moon people about the impending attack, but it was too late. Both Princess Serenity and Prince Endymion were killed by Queen Beryl. Queen Serenity despaired at the sight of her only child's dead body, and so she used the silver crystal to banish the evil forces. Unfortunately such use of the silver crystal meant the death of the user, and so the Queen died. With her last power she sent the souls of the deceased to Earth where they were supposed to be reborn to live a new peaceful life in the future." He looked at his black furred colleague. "Did I miss anything?"

Luna shook her head.

"Good. Luna and I had the orders to watch over the Moon Princess and help her, should the evil ones reawaken. SailorMercury, SailorVenus, SailorMars and SailorJupiter - you are the reborn warriors of the past who were the defenders of the Moon Kingdom, and you, SailorMoon, carry the reborn soul of Princess Serenity."

"Do you mean Mamoru - Prince Endymion - is the reborn Prince Endymion of the past?" SailorMoon wanted to know.

"Indeed," Luna nodded.

"I always knew that we were destined for each other," the blonde sighed. The cats hung their heads simultaneously.

"Somehow this story really sounds a bit different from the one that Kunzite told us," SailorMars commented.

"I don't understand how Endymion could be the Prince of the Earth when that stuff happened in the time of the Middle Ages," SailorMercury wondered.

"I wonder whether we will marry," SailorMoon interjected. "I'd love to be a beautiful bride."

The others sighed.

"I'd say first we have to free Mamoru from the clutches of Queen Beryl," SailorMars pointed out.

The blue-haired Senshi frowned. She had the impression that the story she had heard from Kunzite actually made more sense than Artemis' tale.

"We need a plan to free Tuxedo Kamen," SailorVenus said.

SailorMercury sighed. They always seemed to need some plan, but at the moment she'd rather sort out the stories she had heard by both the silver-haired King and the guardian cat.

"All in all it sounds as if it's pretty dangerous to use the silver crystal," SailorJupiter remarked.

"Use of the full powers of the silver crystal means the death of the wielder," Luna explained.

"Well, actually, I think... I'd rather not use it then." SailorMoon looked shocked.

"Good," Luna said relieved.

"According to Kunzite it was the main power source of the Crystal Kingdom. I guess overloading it really could have catastrophic results," Ami pondered.

"I certainly don't want to use it," SailorMoon assured.

"Do you know where the silver crystal initially came from?" SailorMercury wanted to know from the white cat.

"It belonged to Queen Serenity."

"But where did she get it from?"

"I don't know. She always owned it."

"Hm," SailorMercury made. There was nothing in Artemis' tale that contradicted Kunzite's story. It was fascinating. She really had to think about that a little longer.

* * *

About ten hours later, Kunzite awoke from a rather uncomfortable sleep. He still lay in the chair, and thus his clothes were crumpled and his back ached, not to mention the fact that Zoisite had used him as a cushion.

Jadeite slept on the sofa, while Nephrite couldn't be seen anywhere. Obsidian was in his bedroom and had the most comfortable sleeping place, his fairly large and soft bed.

With a groan Kunzite moved in his chair, and Zoisite awoke and smiled blissfully at him. The silver-haired man sighed. How could his beloved be so cheerful in the morning.

"Are you awake?" Nephrite asked when he floated through the wall from the next room.

"Just now," Kunzite replied and yawned. His magickal energy was still dangerously depleated. If only Zoisite got up from him that he could stretch and try to straighten his uniform, but he obviously didn't want to move.

"It's pretty boring when everyone sleeps," Nephrite complained. In his bodiless state he didn't have to rest at all.

"I'm sorry, but I'm still tired." Kunzite gave Zoisite a kiss. "Would you please get up now, little rat?"

"Awww, Kunzite-sama - I find it quite comfortable here."

"I noticed."

Nonetheless, Zoisite got to his feet and stretched gracefully.

"How could you sleep like that," Nephrite wondered.

Kunzite pulled out of the chair, but far less gracefully. "I don't know." He stretched as well. "Actually, I couldn't," he admitted.

"I slept well," Zoisite commented with a smile.

"I know," Kunzite sighed and rubbed his shoulders and neck.

"You're looking somewhat the worse for wear today," Nephrite grinned.

"What would you expect - I was sandwiched between the chair and this sweet load." Kunzite gazed at his beautiful beloved.

"That's just how you look like."

"I'll be glad when I can return home, take a bath and get some real sleep."

Nephrite tsked and watched Jadeite who still explored the land of dreams.

"This is decidedly unfair," Kunzite complained. "I did the work and he got the sofa."

The disembodied King laughed.

Zoisite tugged at Kunzite and directed him back to the chair. When he sat, the young man began to massage he shoulders. "Now that's better," he sighed and relaxed under skillful the hands of his beloved.

"So what's up today?" Nephrite wanted to know.

"Either forcing Queen Beryl to give back our memories - although I almost can't work any magick at the moment - or trying to find a way out of the Dark Kingdom."

"Let's wake Jadeite."

"Let me!" Zoisite went over to the blonde man and tickled him.

"Hey, you aren't done massaging me," Kunzite complained. It had been such an enjoyable sensation.

Jadeite awoke with a start. "What? How?"

"Rise and shine," Zoisite chimed.

"I'm already awake," Jadeite grumbled. The sofa had been rather uncomfortable and much too short. He rubbed his aching back.

"Just smile - it's such a wonderful morning," Zoisite exclaimed. Jadeite gave him a dark look.

"He's always like that," Kunzite sighed.

"How could he? I hate mornings." Jadeite shuddered.

"So do I," Kunzite agreed.

"But I know a time, in the beginning when we first met, when you were always up much earlier than me," Zoisite pointed out and returned to continue his massage.

"Well, that was before we lived together."

"You seem to be really demanding," Jadeite chuckled.

"Me? Can't be," Zoisite claimed with raised eyebrows.

"Okay, why did you wake me?" the blonde King inquired.

"We want to figure out a way to get out of the Dark Kingdom while this barrier hinders teleport jumps," Kunzite declared. "Na!" He caught Zoisite's hand that had just slipped under his uniform jacket.

"Zoisite also seems to look for a way," Nephrite commented with amusement, and Kunzite blushed, while Zoisite giggled.

"You're really cute," Jadeite said. "But I'm hungry now. Where do we get some breakfast?"

"Ask Obsidian," Nephrite suggested.

"I'd rather find a way out of the Dark Kingdom, return home and eat an opulent breakfast there," Kunzite stated.

"Indeed. And I want to have some more privacy to sleep," Zoisite rubbed his cheek against Kunzite's silver head and dissolved the wards that he had set around Obsidian's quarters.

"I took down the wards I implemented here," Zoisite announced.

"Yeah, but we can't teleport out directly," Kunzite pointed out. "We should go to the North Pole entrance, walk through and from the outside there should be no barrier anymore."

"I hate it," Jadeite said. "But I don't see another way either. Let's go."

"Zoisite, please?" Kunzite still felt much too tired to open a doorway, and so his partner had to stand in. They went to the gate and stood in the subterranean corridor that lead to the exit.

"We have to hurry before Endymion appears," Jadeite urged and started to run.

"Too late," Nephrite remarked when the Prince and several dozen youma materialized.

"This time you won't escape, traitors," the black-haired youth shouted.

"Hm. How often has he said that by now?" Zoisite floated in the air and immediately started to attack the youma. Unfortunately neither Nephrite nor Kunzite could join the fight, and so it was left to Jadeite to support the gold-copper haired man.

When Zoisite noticed how far they were outnumbered, he grimaced. "It seems we have a problem," he commented.

"Tell me something new." Nephrite was frustrated that he couldn't do anything in his bodiless state. He had been more of a help when he had lollopped around as a rabbit. At least then he still had been able to summon the power of the stars. Nephrite tried to confuse the youma by floating in front of them, but they soon figured out that neither he could harm them nor they him, and so they ignored the ghostly apparition.

Zoisite tried to target Endymion once more. He just couldn't stand this arrogant twit.

"I don't want to be caught and brainwashed again," Kunzite said nervously. He hated to be this defenseless. "We have to find another way."

"Easier said than done," Jadeite shouted. "We can go neither backwards nor forwards."

When Obsidian discovered the disappearance of the Kings, he decided to follow them. He hid somewhere behind Endymion and his youma and watched the confrontation with interest. It didn't look well for the Kings.

Zoisite jumped through the corridor like an acrobat and killed whatever got in his way, but the amount of youma didn't decrease. Kunzite watched the deadly grace of his beloved with admiration and cursed that he was just too washed out to conjure a single energy bolt. Jadeite also did his best, but he knew that they weren't able to hold out much longer.

Obsidian had found a good place to observe the scene. He was still peeved that Zoisite had held him captive in his own quarters and so he decided just to watch the action.

"Kunzite-sama, do you have any idea of how we can get out of here?" Zoisite panted and missed the next target by a hair's breadth. "Damn!" He really felt tired now.

"I'm sorry, my little rat," Kunzite answered him. "If you open a doorway and we step through they will only follow us again."

"It seems we're deep in the shit," Jadeite exclaimed.

Nephrite discovered Obsidian and floated to him as no one took notice of him anymore. "Aren't you going to do something?"

"Me? Why should I? The fight is thrilling."

Zoisite riddled a youma with ice crystals, but another one immediately took her place.

"You really want to merely watch?" Nephrite asked.

"Sure," Obsidian shrugged. "I wouldn't want to fight against Endymion."

"If we don't get out of here soon, we're doomed," Zoisite stated with desperation in his emerald eyes. He didn't want to end like this and fought like a lion, not only for his live, but for his beloved as well.

"You bet," Jadeite growled. "But I don't know what to do either."

Endymion laughed a rather insane laugh. "Why don't you just give up and spare yourself the pain?"

"Because I don't follow orders that are given by an arrogant son of a bitch," Zoisite hissed.

"Now it's going to be real fun," Obsidian observed gleefully. "They're starting to insult each other."

Suddenly Celestine materialized with another horde of youma. "Ah! The traitors," she shouted. "Step aside, Endymion! It's my job to capture them."

"Why haven't I brought popcorn with me?" Obsidian commented. Nephrite was shocked to see Naru in a Dark Kingdom uniform, leading a troop of youma. What did Queen Beryl do to her?

"I hope they'll start to argue in earnest," Jadeite coughed. He was almost done for.

"I found them first," Endymion declared.

"Go away and don't try to do my job," Celestine hissed.

Kunzite frowned. "Somehow that sounds quite familiar."

"Let's try to sneak away silently," Zoisite suggested. As the youma waited for further commands, they had their glances fixed on their superior officers and didn't notice the escaping Kings.

"You aren't in command of this mission," Endymion shouted at the red-haired girl. "I'm the first commander of Beryl's troops."

"We'll see how much longer." Celestine laughed and ordered her youma to do away with Endymion and his army.

"What a bunch of losers," Zoisite commented when Jadeite, Kunzite and he had slipped around a corner.

"It's fun to see how they finish themselves off," Obsidian stated with satisfaction.

Nephrite decided to follow the other Kings. In his current state he couldn't help Naru, and he needed Kunzite to become material again. They ran through the corridors of the cavern system and finally reached the exit where they were greeted by a blizzard. Kunzite wrapped his cape around Zoisite and himself. Nephrite was glad that he didn't feel anything at the moment.

"First I don't get anything to eat, then I'm almost fried and now I seem to become an icicle," Jadeite muttered. "I'm fed up with it."

"Next time put on a cape as well," Kunzite grinned weakly. "It helps against the cold. - Little rat, do you have enough power left to open a doorway?"

"I hope so." Zoisite concentrated a created a black gate that transported them to the city of Tokyo. They appeared in the middle of a mall and the passers-by looked rather astonished at the four uniformed persons.

"I hate it. Really," Jadeite nagged.

"So? Shall I tell you how I feel at the moment?" Nephrite grumbled.

"Be glad that you have human form again. It's your fault that I'm so low on energy at the moment."

"Yes, yes, but whose fault was it that I lost my body in the first place?!"

"Yeah, that's what I wonder anyway," Zoisite sulked. "I tried so hard to get rid of you, and now everyone tries to revive you."

"That's poetic justice," Nephrite commented.

"Be quiet, you two," Kunzite commanded. "As far as I know you only competed with each other for the silver crystal. As it's clear that I will get it when we'll have obtained it, you might as well end your disagreement."

Nephrite and Jadeite examined Kunzite with a strange look. The tall man grinned at them, before he put an arm around Zoisite's shoulders. "Let's go home before Endymion and Celestine figure out that we're gone and where to."

Zoisite waved a taxi to them and they drove back to their house. When they had left, Zoisite erased the memory of the driver and sent him back.

"Okay, I'm done for today," Jadeite said. "I merely want something to eat."

"I only need a bath and then my cozy, comfortable bed," Kunzite stated.

"Do you cook something?" Zoisite asked the blonde man. "I'm hungry, too."

"Sorry, I don't feel like cooking at the moment," Jadeite shook his head. "I'll go for some frozen food and the microwave oven."

"But for me, too," Zoisite demanded. "I'm tired and I did most of the magickal work today."

"So? I'm tired, too."

Zoisite sighed and looked tragically up to Kunzite. Maybe he should kill Jadeite even though he could make a great lasagne. When the other man went into the kitchen, Zoisite followed him.

"Fetch me something, too," Kunzite called after him. "I'll be in bed."

Nephrite stayed in the living room and tried to sit down - no minor feat as he continually floated through the chair.

Kunzite let his clothes fall to the ground where he stood and showered, before he fell into his comfortable bed. He snuggled into the night blue satin cushions and waited for his beloved.

Jadeite threw something into the microwave oven and ignored Zoisite who rummaged through the icebox and dug out two meals as well. As the microwave oven was still occupied, he threw away the paper wrappings of the meals and heated them with a small fire ball.

Jadeite shook his head and started to devour his meal. Zoisite had no style at all.

The small man put one of the still closed wine bottles, two glasses, chopsticks and the food onto a tray and transported it telekinetically upstairs. As Kunzite still looked totally exhausted, Zoisite snuggled close to him and fed him some choice bits. It didn't take long and Kunzite signaled that he had enough, so Zoisite let the remains of the food disappear. This time they were much too tired to turn to each other for dessert and fell asleep right away.

* * *

Obsidian soon grew bored by the argument between Endymion and Celestine, when the Kings were gone and decided to visit Queen Beryl. He was sure she could tell him some interesting things.

He materialized in the audience chamber and bowed before the Queen who sat on her throne and looked into her crystal ball and hoped for a viewing of the traitors. She was angry that she couldn't track the fugitive Kings anymore by the crystals she had implanted in their brains.

Nephrite's had gone lost when he was killed, that was for sure. Jadeite's crystal probably hadn't survived putting him into eternal sleep; the energy she had needed for it had certainly fried the complex control structures.

Then there was Zoisite... Well, this insolent King somehow never reacted properly to the crystal, but as he had put his talents to the destruction of her enemies most of the time, she hadn't minded too much, especially when it seemed that Kunzite had him under control.

She still wondered how the oldest and strongest of her minions had managed to break free. Probably it had been the power of that cursed emotion, love. She'd always known it was dangerous, and this was why she strongly discouraged her subjects to fall under the spell of it. Kunzite's flight together with his mate angered her most of all.

"Your Majesty," Obsidian said when she still hadn't acknowledged him after quite a while.

"Obsidian? What brings you to me?" Beryl asked.

"I have to tell you something, my Queen."

"Speak, Obsidian!"

"Kunzite freed Jadeite from the eternal sleep and called back Nephrite from the dead."

So that was why Jadeite and Nephrite were running around again as some youma spies had informed her, Beryl thought and hissed. "How dare he! The punishment of Jadeite was my decree, and only I am allowed to rescind it."

Obsidian didn't flinch as she called a blue energy storm from her crystal ball, while the courtiers cowered in fright.

"But what interests me even more is how could Kunzite call back Nephrite? Where did he find that particular spell?" Beryl frowned. True, Kunzite had been a Master Mage in the past, and obviously he had gotten back at least parts of his memory, but even that shouldn't enable him to bind spirits.

"I saw that he had a really large, black book with strange golden symbols on the cover."

"A large, black book with golden symbols..." Queen Beryl's frown deepened. "Could that really be the legendary spellbook of the Great Mage Amethyst?" she exclaimed. At least that would account for the spell to conjure spirits; high level stuff like this had been her uncle's specialty.

Beryl had found a treasure of spells in Amethyst's secret library, but this personal spellbook hadn't been among her findings. She would give quite a lot to get her claws on it.

"I would have told you about the spellbook earlier, but unfortunately Kunzite imprisoned me in my rooms."

"He did what?" Beryl almost exploded. The insolent traitorous King seemed to get in and out of the Dark Kingdom at his pleasure.

"The Kings were here together with the Sailor Senshi. I guess they allied themselves to them."

"That's impossible!" Queen Beryl tapped her claws furiously on the armrest of her throne and decorated it with deep scratches. "We have to destroy them as fast as possible. And you will bring me that book!"

"What kind of book is it?" Obsidian asked innocently. If the Queen knew that it still hung around his neck in the form of a seemingly innocuous amethyst pendant...

"It's a spellbook that misses from my collection," she thundered. "If you return it to me I will reward you accordingly."

"But then you have to allow me to leave the Dark Kingdom again." The barrier Beryl had woven to capture the Kings was a nuisance, he found.

"Ah well, as the trap hasn't done what it should do anyway." The red-haired woman waved her hand and dissolved the barrier.

"By the way, my Queen, Kunzite claimed that I'm related to Prince Endymion. Is that true?"

'What more does he remember?', Beryl wondered and caused another energy outbreak from her crystal ball.

"Is it?"

"Yes. It is," Beryl admitted. "He's your," she counted, "great-great-cousin."

"Really?" Obsidian looked at her with fascination.

"Indeed. As he's the grandson of my dear deceased brother, there wasn't much choice."

"Oh. But he should really learn to behave more properly," Obsidian suggested. "It's embarassing that he always argues with Celestine."

"Indeed. I guess I should give you some greater responsibilities. As long as Endymion has this problem with Celestine, you will teach her from now on."

"As you wish," Obsidian bowed his head.

Queen Beryl tried to calm herself down. It was highly annoying - all of her mightiest warriors were alive, but now they worked on the wrong side. The worst thing was the fact that Kunzite had found Amethyst's spellbook that she hunted for a good millennium. Now he really could become a danger to her, especially as he additionally began to remember his past.

"You are dismissed, Obsidian." Beryl waved her hand and the violet-haired man teleported away. She sighed. Now she had to destroy the renegade Kings and the Sailor Senshi if she wanted to get back the silver crystal.

* * *

Obsidian teleported to Endymion and Celestine who still hadn't stopped arguing.

"Celestine," he shouted.

"Yes?" The red-haired girl turned around.

"You will go to the training range immediately and return to your exercises," he ordered.

"On whose authority?"

"Queen Beryl gave me the task to finish your training."

Endymion snickered. "I knew that little girls shouldn't lead an army."

Celestine took a deep breath to hurl some further insults at Endymion, but a dark gaze of Obsidian's stopped her.

"Queen Beryl is annoyed about your conduct," Obsidian told them, and they actually looked chastened. "And now you will carry out your orders."

"Yes, my Lord," Celestine bowed her head before she teleported to the training area.

Obsidian was satisfied. He liked it when he was in command. He examined Endymion thoughtfully. So this was his great-great-cousin.

Endymion returned an angry gaze and sent the youma away. With blowing cape he turned around and opened a doorway that transported him to his dwelling.

Obsidian grinned. It was fun to annoy Endymion, he found. The dramatic exit of the dark-haired young man reminded him that he wanted to try out such a pretty cape as well, and he teleported to his quarters.

Celestine occupied a booth at the training range and tried to hit her target. Slowly but surely she improved her skills, she thought with satisfaction. Maybe she could try an attempt at Obsidian's life soon, but she had to be sure to hit him fatally with the first shot.

After some trials with a cape in front of his mirror Obsidian teleported to the training range. Obviously it needed quite a lot of training to blow a cape really dramatically, and he wondered how long Kunzite had exercised for the optimum effect.

"How many hits have you accomplished?" he asked.

"Seventy percent," she replied proudly.

"That's embarassing. I expect 100 percent!"

"I'm trying hard," she assured him desperately.

"Then try harder."

Celestine sighed and took up the training again while Obsidian stood behind her and watched her closely. The girl thought it had been better when Endymion was her mentor - he had left her mostly alone.

Of course Obsidian became bored pretty soon, and he conjured a brush to work on his hair. Today he hadn't found the time to do that yet. Celestine looked at him. How long did he want her to go on?

"What's the matter? Continue!"

"As you wish." So he watched her still. Maybe she should try it and fire at him after all.

Obsidian grinned at her when she gave him such a murderous glare. "I think now you might try to hit a moving target," he proposed and set the target at the far end of the booth in motion.

Well, he asked for it. Celestine smiled and targeted her mentor. Of course he had waited for her to misunderstood his order and evaded the attack.

"Not bad," he laughed. "But I meant you should hit the target and not me."

"Ah well, but that isn't so much fun," she pouted.

"Maybe I should do some target practice, too," Obsidian grinned. Celestine looked at him warily. Probably he wanted to take her for the target. He conjured a violet energy ball and played with it.

"How's your defense, by the way?"

"I guess it's okay," she said.

"Catch!" He threw the ball at her, and she managed to deflect it easily. "Not bad," he acknowledged. "That's enough for today. I'll meet you tomorrow morning after breakfast."

"Yes, Lord Obsidian. Do you have any further orders?"

"No, you are dismissed."

The girl teleported back to her quarters. Somehow it was unfair that she had to follow the commands of a boy not much older than her.

The End of Pt.12 - Goto Pt.13

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