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Anguish

mbsilvana@yahoo.com
standard disclaimers

        She stood, her henshin stick held up in her slender
hand.  She wanted, more then anything, to break down
and weep.  They had come so far, yet they were
defeated by a mortal within their own home.  Setsuna
looked at Michiru and Haruka, and her own sadness
seemed infantile.
        Michiru was curled up on the floor, and Setsuna
cursed Tendo Ranma for the millionth time.  If he had
planned to torture the Outer Senshi, he certainly
couldn’t have thought of a better plan.  It would have
been kinder to rip out their heart crystals and stomp
on them.
        “Michiru,” Haruka said softly, breaking the silence
that had been hanging tensely in the air between them.
        Michiru said nothing, but shifted her dead eyes
towards her soul mate.
        “I wish I could hold you, beloved,” the Uranus Senshi
said wistfully.  “Damn Tendo Ranma,” she finished,
voicing Setsuna’s thoughts.
        “He’s already damned us,” Michiru replied bitterly.
“How could he kill a child, let alone his sister?” she
whispered.
        “He’s sold his soul to darkness,” Haruka said
matter-of-factly.  “We were blaming Mistress Nine and
Saturn Knight for warping Hotaru-chan, but perhaps the
corruption began younger... who else could have taught
her the Dragon Slave?”
        “Let’s not speak of the bastard,” Michiru said, her
unusual use of profanity showing how far she had
fallen since her daughter had died.
        “Hai,” Haruka replied.
        “But we should have thought of this earlier,” Setsuna
said, finally joining in the conversation.   Anything
to avoid thinking about how uncomfortable she was from
 holding the same position for five hours.  Her mind
began to click into motion, using the wisdom she had
acquired over centuries to come to an unsettling
conclusion.  “We never learned who Saturn Knight
was... could it be possible that Saturn Knight was
really Tendo Ranma?” she asked.
        The other two Outers’ jaws dropped.  “It would fit,”
Haruka murmured.  “After all, Hotaru never said she
and Ranma were brother and sisters... what better way
for Saturn Knight to watch over his beloved then to
pretend to be her relative?  At least until she
matured.”
        “But Saturn Knight died battling Mistress Nine!”
Michiru protested, finally showing a little bit of
life.
        “Are we sure?  Haven’t you learned not to take
anything at face value yet?” Haruka retorted, fire in
her eyes.
        “Please, Haruka,” Michiru begged, “I don’t want to
die with you angry at me.   Let’s assume that Saturn
Knight was really Tendo Ranma.  Why would he... kill
Hotaru-chan?” she managed to get out, only choking up
once.
        “Saturn Knight was psychotic,” Setsuna reminded her
comrades-at-arms.   “Perhaps finding Hotaru-chan being
raised by a decent family made him jealous.  Perhaps
he thought that if he couldn’t have Sailor Saturn, no
one could.”
        A single tear fell to the floor, and Michiru looked
at Haruka.   “Don’t cry, Haruka,” she said.   “We’ll
be with Hotaru-chan soon,” she promised.
        The toughest of the Senshi looked at her beloved.
“I know.   I want to go there, so I cry because I’m
weak.  We’re abandoning the Princess.  Can we really
leave her?”
        “We don’t have a choice in the matter- Ranma designed
his trap very well indeed,” Michiru said.  Then the
traces of life that had animated her for a those few
moments fled.   “I love you, Haruka,” she said.
        “I love you, too, my Michiru,” Haruka replied
solemnly.
        In her entire existence, Setsuna had never truly
hated anyone more then she’d hated Tendo Ranma at that
moment.   Killing them would be a horrible crime, but
to torment Haruka and Michiru so was the worst anyone
could do.  First he killed a poor, defensively child,
then he separated them to die a horrible death without
being able to comfort each other.   The human touch
was a wonderful thing, and to deny it was to spit in
the face of everything humanity stood for.
        Them the door swung inwards, and they all waited with
baited breath- could it be help? Hotaru walked in, and
they reacted, their urge to protect their child
outweighing their joy.
        "No! Hotaru! Run!"
        "Quick, get away from here as fast as you can!"
        "Don't worry about us! You have to save yourself!"

END

===
Quicksilver
Lady of the Labyrinth
Full time student and part-time writer
http://www.homstead.com/quicksilverslabyrinth/headpage.htm
"Rage, rage against the dying of the light."