Sailor Moon Expanded

Crystal Tokyo Snapshots : Rei
A Sailor Moon Expanded Fanfiction
by Mark Latus

     I've just started looking over the morning reports when the significance
of the date finally strikes me.  April 17th, it's my birthday.  But more than 
that it's April 17 2978 AD.  I'm 1000 years old today.
     So what?  What difference does it make?  
     The fact of the matter is immortality makes the whole birthday thing
meaningless.  What's the point in marking time when I'm exactly the same as I 
was last year?  Or last century?  
     There's no presents, no cards, nothing to mark the day.  Good!  I've told
them often enough how I feel about this foolishness.  I'll bet they still   
remember how uncooperative I was during the 500th celebrations.  Everyone
else went along with Ti's orchestrated media events but it was just a needless
distraction to me.  
     Not like Minako.  She's all for it.  Hell, every centennial she throws a 
combination family reunion and massive party.  Each one's bigger than the
last as the brood keeps growing.  At least it did until recently.  All 41 kids 
attended the last one though Ruby (their youngest) was still just a baby at 
the time.  She's all grown up now and bugging everyone with that biography 
nonsense but she's the youngest Aino.  Guess Mina finally decided enough's 
enough and a few centuries without the pitter patter of tiny feet were in 
order.  Besides they must have finally realized if they kept expanding they'd
run out of places big enough to hold family events.  The number of people in   
CT who can claim connection to the Aino line is incredible.
     I still shake my head when I think about it.  Who'd have expected Mina
to wind up matriarch of such a massive family?  But as she was the one with a 
family name they had to call it the Aino clan.  Anyway all those very 
long lived kids produced and still produce a lot of offspring, not to mention 
there's no shortage of spouses and in-laws.  Factor in Ti's brood as well and 
you've got a lot of guests.  
     I attended the last one ... which was about a century ago (No, it was a 
century ago.  God only knows what she'll do for her thousandth come October!) 
but left early to get back to Security (for what turned out to be yet another 
false alarm).  It wasn't easy, Mina did everything short of wrap me in her 
"Love me chain" and toss me in the corner.  She was determined I stay there 
and enjoy myself.  I came very close to throttling her, how Calcite puts up 
with her is beyond me.
     Of course sometimes he doesn't.  Like right now when I don't expect 
they'll be living together for quite a while.  Anyway I managed to force my 
way out of her 900th party.  Minako called me an old fossil (is there any 
other kind?) who'd forgotten how to enjoy life.  I called her an irresponsible 
airhead who'd never grown up.  She agreed, said she's found taking life too 
seriously backfires.  Of course she was back together with Calcite at the time 
and firmly on the positive side of their love-hate cycle.  That's the only 
time she can joke about it.  Anyway she asked me why I didn't just relax for 
a change?  "It's Crystal Tokyo, take it easy"  That seems to have become our 
civic motto.  
    They don't understand.  We're an island of stability in the midst of 
chaos and there's no shortage of people who envy us.  Envy breeds hate and 
hate breeds trouble.  It's an old cliche but no less true because of that.  
"Eternal vigilance is the price of freedom!"  Why doesn't anyone else see 
that?  No wonder I run Internal Security.  Who else could be trusted to take
the job seriously?
     That's actually a little harsh.  Endymion's never lost sight of the 
outside world.  As he administers all Nippon outside Crystal Tokyo he's well 
aware utopia stops at our borders.  Serenity was joking when she named Calcite 
the Court Devil's Advocate and Royal Cynic but he sees it as his duty to keep 
her from being too trusting.  His foreign policy advice is always relevant.
He's got a network of contacts out there he's established and maintained
through his stints as "Gray" keeping him up to date.  Our army may not do 
much outside of disaster relief but it keeps Mako on her toes.  On top of all 
that I have to wonder just how necessary I really am.  I said it myself, we're 
an island of stability.  Paradise doesn't need secret police.
     I'm overstating again but I can't forget it.  I haven't even looked at  
half these reports but I know what they'll say.  "Everything's fine.  Have a
nice day!"  The same thing they say almost everyday.  Boredom is a major 
problem in my position.  It gets so you want something to happen.  
     Or almost.  As Makoto said last time I complained to her, "Rei, you 
moan when there's nothing happening.  But you scream louder if anything does
disturb the tranquillity.  Face facts, you're never going to be satisfied."
     She was right.  After that mess recently I spent weeks trying to sort
it out while swearing vengeance on anybody who'd caused trouble in my ... 
our city.  I'm sure Magnesite was involved and someday I'll prove ...  But
the point is I don't exactly want anything hurting people or damaging the
city.  But I don't want things perfect either.  I need some sort of challenge
to keep me sharp, but something that's not too extreme.  I guess I want 
troublemakers rather than terrorists and I want to be able to catch them 
before they cause trouble.  Or at least prevent them from doing any harm.  
Thank the gods for Magnesite and Margrave.  Without them to watch I'd have 
gone over the edge decades ago.
     Of course I could be doing a lot more.  I sigh as I remember the early
days.  I still think we should have imposed Pax Serenity.  Though I'm 
naturally biased being the one who proposed it.
     It was a few years after the Dark Times and we were helping to pull the
outside world together.  Afterwards it was called "The Time of Changes" but
back then we just called it "one damned thing after another".  Magic was back,
the world was a mess and we'd taken over Japan.  Serenity ruled Crystal Tokyo
while Endymion took charge of the rest of the country.  There had been was no 
revolution and no one opposed us.  With the Imperial Household wiped out and 
the old government gone people wanted something to follow.  When Serenity 
awakened and created Crystal Tokyo they all felt it.  It wasn't as intense
as in Tokyo but everyone in Japan sensed her presence.  If the effect hadn't 
diminished as it spanned the world removing the ice the whole world would have 
handed power to Serenity.  As it was our fellow countrymen were glad ... no, 
eager to follow Serenity.  If she hadn't squashed it they'd have been 
worshipping her.
     Serenity didn't want to rule the world but there were things she wanted
to change.  She saw Crystal Tokyo as being both an example of what the world 
could be and a mediator between the nations of the world.  What she didn't 
want to do was impose utopia upon the world.  Which was a nice ideal but I 
wanted her to do more.  For a start I wanted her to use her power to end war.  
Anyone who precipitated conflict would face the senshi backed by the 
ginzuishou.  And the rest of the world was learning just what we were capable 
of doing when we got mad.  
     Serenity wasn't sure.  Not that she was adverse to acting on a global 
scale.  She had firm views on preserving the environment and expected to be 
heeded.  When she was ignored and the old polluting industries started up   
again she took action.  I suspect Endymion told her the best way to do make
her feelings felt.  She didn't do anything destructive, she had no need. 
Machinery in the guilty industries would simply shut down and she'd ignore all
demands for restoration and threats of retribution.  There was some trouble
but that simply demonstrated that Crystal Tokyo was untouchable.  It was good
but it wasn't enough.  I pushed for a Pax Serenity.  We wouldn't rule the 
world, we'd simply make it impossible to wage war.
     It split the court.  Calcite argued that while the intention was good
and would be initially popular we'd create a legacy of resentment and anger
among the other nations.  Not to mention it would be the first step towards 
taking control of the world for their own good.  He admitted an ingrained 
distrust for rulers who controlled whole worlds and that Serenity was probably 
the first monarch in history who wouldn't be corrupted by power.  But she
would become the focus of all the hatred in the world and besides the usual 
worries about revolution and terrorism magic was back.  Magic combined with 
hate could breed terrible things.
     Ferrite sided with me, perhaps he saw it as a rebirth of the Silver 
Millennium.  Minako and Titanite sided with Calcite, that was no surprise.  Ami
and Makoto following their lead was another matter.  Endymion abstained from
giving an opinion.  He said the power was Serenity's so it must be her choice. 
Serenity seemed undecided.  Then Haruka and Michiru sided with me.  
     I think that was the kiss of death for the Pax.  Problem was when you
compared Uranus and Neptune's methods to Sailor Moon's (better known as
"hard edged vs warm and fuzzy") you noticed that hers were always the more 
successful.  Whatever happened to those two anyway?  They just dropped out of
sight two centuries back.  No traces, no rumours, nothing.  Just gone and
no one knows why.
     At any rate Serenity made her choice.  So we became a peacemaker rather 
than imposing it.  Serenity could still enforce peace if she chose but she 
still thinks this is the wisest course.  I admit things are better than they 
were ... wars are few and far between and the mere presence of Crystal Tokyo 
keeps the saber rattling down.  But I still think she could have done so much 
     Seems I'm in the mood to reminisce today.  Haven't thought this much 
about the early days in a while.  Those were bad times.  Bad yet exciting.  I
wouldn't want them back by any stretch of the imagination yet I can't help
remembering that back then I was essential.  I miss that sometimes.
     I was 30 when the old world ended.  Chronologically anyway, thanks to
the ginzuishou I'd stopped aging at about 24.  Those were strange times for
all of us.  The line between Rei Hino and Sailor Mars was beginning to blur.
It was the same for all of us.  Senshi weren't supposed to keep transforming 
back and forth.  Originally you'd take the office, serve a few decades then
revert to human and pass the office on.  We didn't know just how different we
were from all our predecessors back then.  But the changes were starting to 
leak through.  Our human selves were gaining senshi strength and endurance
though our powers (and our disguise magic) required transformation.
     Serenity and Endymion ... no, Usagi and Mamoru were holding off on having
children despite the pressure from her parents.  When you know the end of the 
world's coming you don't want to start a family.  She couldn't tell them the
real reason why they weren't grandparents yet.  This was before we knew that 
Endymion ... but we know someday, somehow he'll father their daughter.  And  
it'll have to be someday soon.  Maybe Ami's finally on the verge of an answer 
...  Getting back to her parents they were definitely eager to see 
grandchildren.  Usagi still hasn't given them any but I'm sure they'd be 
proud of their daughter.  I wish they'd lived to see Crystal Tokyo.
     Usagi ... funny, haven't thought of her by that name in centuries.  
Probably because it would make it so hard to take her seriously.  I mean 
accepting orders from Queen Serenity, no problem.  Queen Usagi ...?  No 
chance!  First order she gave I'd have a dozen problems with it and we'd be 
tongue duelling inside a minute.  Which doesn't do much for the dignity of a 
royal court.  Also it's probably treasonable somehow.  But I was trying to 
remember the old days, wasn't I?
     Ami was still holding Tom off.  He'd have married her in a minute but
she kept putting him off.  Claimed her medical career was too demanding for 
family life for a few years.  I think he bought it, certainly he was willing 
to wait.  Ami said it was so hard not being able to tell him the truth but 
the risk was just too great.  Foreknowledge is a two edged sword, the world
was supposed to be caught unawares so we couldn't warn anyone.  Like we can't
tell anyone that a few years from now ... Don't even think about it, Rei.  
Concentrate on what's been and done, not what will be.
      The real reason she never accepted his proposals was, like all of us, 
she knew the end was coming.  After all those years of study she wanted a few 
years as Doctor Mizuno before her old self was permanently replaced by Sailor 
Mercury.  Tom was (and she always blushed when she said it) a distraction.  We 
all expected her to break down and marry him a year or two after he first 
asked but we'd underestimated her resolve.  I found out later she had taken 
the precaution of getting Usagi to make him immortal without telling him.  
Makes me wonder how long she was planning to keep him waiting.  But the end 
came sooner than we'd expected so I never found out.  The end of the world
left no time for personal concerns.  After the Founding they both resolved to 
wait for until things were a bit less chaotic for both of them.  Which turned 
out to be decades though I think they overdid it.  Cal and Mina were able to 
balance marriage, family and duty and while they weren't the best example in 
retrospect their first century was solid.
     As for the rest of us back in the old days?  Makoto and Minako were going 
through their fair share of boyfriends (especially Makoto, some things never
change) but neither had found anyone they wanted to share their life with.  
Me?  I married Yuuchiro.
     I'm still not sure why.  I didn't love him ... at least not in that 
great, almost overwhelming way Usagi and Mamoru loved one another.  Or that 
Serenity and Endymion still share.  I've never found anyone I could bond to 
like that.  But I loved him in some ways and it seemed enough.  My visions 
were getting darker and I knew time was running out.  He loved me far more 
than I loved him but I thought I could handle that.  I just wanted as much 
happiness as I could before everything fell apart.  Was that too much to ask?
     The Dark Times started and we spent five long years watching everything
crumble.  Everywhere that wasn't frozen fell into anarchy.  We held Japan 
for almost four years.  Perhaps it would have been kinder to let them be
frozen but senshi don't surrender.  Instead while we fought off the servants 
the cities collapsed into chaos.  We were too busy fighting them to save the 
people from themselves.  One more thing we owe those bastards for.  Why did
Serenity heal them instead of obliterating them?  Because she is Serenity,
you know that Rei!  That's why the power should be hers instead of yours.
Because you would have used it without hesitation to destroy them!  
     I'm getting sidetracked.  Everyone suffered, many worse than I did.
Don't single your grief out as being special somehow, Rei.  We all lost people 
we cared about in that madness.  Yuuchiro died, I mourned.  Not long after 
that I joined the sleepers.
     I did not let them freeze me!  I was just unlucky to be the first
senshi casualty.  Maybe I let grief make me careless while I was torching the
bastards but I never gave up.  Not even in the ice itself did I give in to the 
silence.  I raged and waited for the day I'd be free to take vengeance.
     I never remarried.  I didn't realize I'd be creating my own tragic 
romantic myth.  Lady Hino/Senshi Mars, who lost her one true love to the Great 
Darkness and has sworn to be true to him forever ...  I hate to spoil a good 
legend but there's no more to that than the one about never getting over 
Endymion.  I just never found anyone I wanted to share my whole life with.  
And I certainly haven't been living like a nun the past millennium.  Matter 
of fact there have been plenty of men who take the legend at face value and 
determine they'll be the one to heal my broken heart.  Sometimes I let them.
     Anyway I'm not sure marriage is suited to immortals.  Of the three 
immortal couples I know only one is solid.  Oh Tom and Ami's marriage holds
together but they hardly see each other.  Both wrapped up in their own little
worlds, meeting a couple of times a year ... to me they're more occasional 
lovers than husband and wife.  
     On the other hand compared to Cal and Mina they look pretty good.  Oh in 
their good times you'd think they were Serenity and Endymion, madly in love 
and raising wonderful children.  In their bad times you don't even want them 
to be on the same continent, let alone the same city.  Yes, I know why 
Serenity ordered Calcite to stay in Tokyo after the last bust up.  I can even 
see the sense in it but I know it's going to mean trouble between them.
     There are other couples among the immortals but Haruka and Michiru 
dropped out of sight so who knows how they're doing?  As for Azurite and 
Pyrite they're more Ami's friends than mine.  Despite all this time I don't 
really know them that well.  Besides they aren't really immortal.  Though a 
10,000 year life expectancy is close enough for most people.
     Of course if your partner's not immortal that's going to mean an even
bigger mess.  I remember how Ti got when her first love turned down her offer
of immortality.  Asuma was philosophically opposed and she couldn't change his 
mind no matter what she did.  Eventually she accepted his beliefs but it hurt 
more than she ever let on.  She'd seen them as being like Cal and Mina (this
was during the early years, long before the cracks appeared) founding their 
own clan of extended descendants.  Instead the man who fathered her children
died centuries ago.  Just like my daughter's father.
     I almost fall out of my chair.  Why, in the name of all the gods, think
about that now?  I haven't though about her for centuries.  The date's 
affecting me more than I thought.  No wonder I'm recalling so much history.
Must be feeling maudlin.  I hate that!  But now that I've recalled it I can't
stop thinking about it.
     I never intended to have a child but my own arrogance was my downfall.
It was after we found out about Margrave and dragged her before Serenity for
judgement.  Okay we didn't exactly drag her, we took her there because we had
no idea what else to do with a youma who'd surrendered rather than fought. 
Margrave managed to sweet-talk Serenity into thinking she wasn't doing 
anything wrong then volunteered to be mindread to prove she was telling the
truth.  I pushed forward and insisted I perform the reading.  Mostly it was
in case there was some sort of psychic trap but part of it was to show off my 
own abilities.  I'd been one of the most powerful psychics in the world (far
as I knew anyway) and being eclipsed by Serenity bothered me a bit.  This was
the early days and I still thought of her as Usagi on occasion. I was sure I
could handle the side-effects with no problem.  I was overly confident.
     The mindlink was intense, she had a lot more depth than I expected.  In
addition to being a lot smarter than I'd thought I found a few things I didn't
expect.  Despite youma norms she had a strong friendship with Titanite and a 
deep sense of loss.  She'd fallen in love but denied it from pride at being 
the last real youma until it was too late.  In one way she was like me (though
I'll never admit it), we both have rotten tempers and seek calm through 
meditation.  Of course she's a lot more intense, I'm not likely to rip out
someone's throat with my teeth if I blow my stack.  Anyway I found she had
told Serenity the truth.  I found one other thing.  Her sex kitten act wasn't 
an act, it was part of her.  She felt no guilt or shame over this, it was just
who she was.
     Mindlinks can cause temporary spillover, a blurring of personalities. 
Margrave tried fire meditation for a few weeks but found it interfered with 
her lifestyle and gave it up.  I laughed when I heard she'd started visiting 
the fire shrine.  Despite the evidence I wasn't worried.  I had to be stronger 
willed than any youma.  I was sure I could handle anything I'd picked up 
inside her mind.
     I was wrong.
     I can only think part of me envied her lack of inhibitions.  That's the  
only explanation I have for my subsequent behaviour.  Thankfully I was smart
enough to wear a disguise during my nocturnal prowlings.  A few weeks later
I was back to my old self and glad no one would ever find out about it.  Again
I was wrong.  I hadn't been as cautious as I should have been.  After all I 
was a senshi.  The magic that empowered me made immune to all disease.  I was 
right, I was in no danger of infection.  Conception was another matter.
    It was three months before I knew something was wrong with me.  Guess I
was too distracted by the chaos Minako generated planning (in her words), "The
greatest wedding in the history of Crystal Tokyo! (which was about two years
old at the time)  A wedding they'll talk about a thousand years from now!" 
And she certainly got the latter, people still talk about it to this day.
Though not quite for the reasons she hoped.  It's still hard for me to think 
about that day without breaking up.  Kind of cruel of us but it's just the 
memory of Minako standing there dripping that fire retardant foam, dress in
ruins, staring at the chaos around her all glassy-eyed then blowing her stack 
and trying to bludgeon Ferrite to death ... HeheheHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!
     Glad this place is soundproofed.  Wouldn't want it getting around that I
laugh like that, people might start to worry about me.  Now where was I?  Oh
right, I went to see Ami.  As a senshi and a doctor she was the only real 
     Ami's diagnosis was, too put it mildly, an unwelcome surprise.  She 
endured my tantrum then asked me what I wanted to do.  I couldn't answer, this 
was beyond me.  At least that's what I thought until Ami started hinting and I 
cut her off.  So maybe I hadn't wanted this but I wasn't going to abort.  You 
have to face the consequences, I said.  I believed it then and I believed it 
now.  I hadn't intended this but I had learned intent wasn't enough.  By that
logic if someone killed the wrong person you should let them loose as they
hadn't intended to kill that victim.  So I realized I had to carry this child
to term or I'd be betraying my own values.
     But that left me with the problem of what to do after the birth.  Those 
were turbulent times, I was needed.  All the senshi were.  They used to say, 
"This is the city of dreams, but the nightmares start at our borders!"  I 
didn't have the time to become a parent.  And, truth be told, I didn't want 
to become one.  I couldn't involve the father to be.  Whichever of them he
was (I rejected Ami's offer of genetic tracing) he'd made no long term 
commitment nor had I wanted one.  That left adoption.  So the first senshi to 
get pregnant would give away her child.  That wouldn't look good but it seemed 
the best thing.  Serenity tried to change my mind, I think she envied me.  She 

even pushed me to consider Ti's suggestion.  
     Ti suggested putting the baby in stasis until such time as I was ready to
care for her.  I know that's exactly what happened to her but the whole 
concept was just too alien to grasp.  But more than that I didn't want to 
become a mother.  I wanted to resolve this and get on with my life.  Not have
a baby in a bottle sitting in my apartment for years, gnawing at my mind.
I was firm and Serenity reluctantly agreed it was my decision.
     Serenity arranged magic to cover my changing appearance.  My senshi 
endurance kept me active until the last couple of weeks.  I was wondering     
about the specifics of giving up the child when Calcite and Minako came to
see me.  They hadn't been together that long, the wedding was just six months
earlier.  Their offer to adopt came right out of the blue.  Calcite explained
they hadn't been planning to start a family this soon but they'd known when
they were ready they'd have to adopt.  Humans and youma were genetically 
incapable of breeding so Minako would never bear their children.  So they'd
talked it over and were willing to adopt my daughter.
     I thought about it for a long time before rejecting their offer.  I 
didn't want this child but to watch from the sidelines while they raised her 
as their own ... No, I couldn't take that.  It had to be a clean break.  The 
adoption would take place outside Crystal Tokyo.  Somewhere I couldn't see her 
grow up.  Besides why make them pay the price for my mistake?  As they'd said  
they didn't want a family just yet.  Best she went to a couple that were ready 
for children.
     A wiser move than I knew.  When they were ready to start a family they
were told they could have children of their own.  Thanks to a little magical
assistance from Serenity and the ginzuishou.  And they've certainly taken  
advantage of her help.  41 children ... spread over a thousand years maybe
that's not very many but ...  Frankly having one was bad enough.
     As for the birth itself ... you can call it the miracle of life if you
like.  I think the old line about trying to pass a soccer ball sums it up
nicely.  I believe my first coherent words were, "Never again!"  And to date
I've kept that vow.  According to Minako it's easy after the seventh but I'll
just have to take her word for that.
     It was harder than I'd expected to have her taken away.  If I'd named 
her I don't think I could have managed it.  But she was just as I'd arranged.  
I'd taken care to pick the best candidates and from all accounts I was right.
I had her birth records altered.  According to them her mother had died giving
birth, I forget the name I gave the fictional deceased.  When she grew up if
she looked for her biological mother she met a dead end.  Which was as it 
should be.  She should think of those who raised her as her parents, not the
foolish woman who conceived her by accident and gave her away.  Plus if she
learned her mother was a senshi and the news became public ... well who knew
what would happen?  She lived, had her own children and died never knowing
her connection to me.  It was for the best.  It has to have been.
     Is that the time?!  I can't believe I was brooding that long ... Great,
my eyes are watering!  Anyone walks in and sees that my image is shot.  Why
am I getting so worked up over people and a world that dies centuries ago.
Sure I have regrets but who doesn't?  I've learned from my mistakes but I
can't change anything that happened.  What's done is done ... and what will
be, will be.  
     I just had to think that didn't I?  Maybe that's it.  Maybe I'm trying  
to forget the future by thinking about the past.  Time's running out and we
know it happens before the end of the 30th century.  Assuming there's ever a
Chibi-Usa born and that's still looking very unlikely.  And once again we 
know disaster is coming but we can't take precautions because we're supposed 
to be taken by surprise.  I really hate time travel!  At least with visions 
it's only what could be, not what must be.    
     Enough of this defeatism!  I've got a job to do.  I'll take tomorrow as
it comes and forget about it until it happens.  Yeah, right.  Like I can 
really ignore what I know.  Dammit, I'm so frustrated!  I really hope we find
something linking Magnesite to those fires.  Arresting him would be a great
way to blow off some steam.  I smile at the thought as I turn back to my desk.
Which is when I notice the ball sitting on top of it.  It's about the size of
a football, white and featureless.  I actually take a moment to wonder where
it came from before my combat instincts kick in.  No one entered which means
... the teleport blockers are down and somebody's sent me a surprise package.
Like a bomb!  I'm still cursing my rustiness and invoking my full powers 
when it goes off in my face.
     My office is now covered with paper streamers and my hair's full of
confetti.  I'm still standing there blinking in confusion when my surroundings
change.  I'm somewhere dark and there's movement around me.  I'm about to
brighten things up when I'm dazzled by the flare of lights.
     It's the royal reception hall and it looks like they've crammed half the
palace in here.  Everyone's wearing silly hats, tossing streamers or waving
noisemakers.  I'm standing there with my mouth hanging open in the center of 
the room ... inside what appears to be a forceshield.  I hear Serenity
saying, "See!  I told you she wouldn't just start blasting when I brought her
here.  We didn't need the shield at all!"
     Endymion murmurs, "Better safe than sorry.  But it's mainly there to 
keep her from storming off.  Now weren't you going to ..." 
     "Oh, right!  Ahem ... Lady Hino, on this the thousandth anniversary of 
your birth the court has gathered to honour this special event."  In a 
quiet voice that's only audible inside the forcebubble she says, "Just try
and cooperate this one time, okay Rei?"
     It's not exactly a royal command but ...  That's when Titanite and Minako
sidle up to the shield.  Minako whispers, "Say you'll be a good girl and we'll
let you out of the bubble."
     I bristle and whisper back, "What if I don't?"
     Ti, who's got to make this look good on camera whispers, "Then we shoot
you through the crowd, getting as much footage of you being here as we can
manage.  Which means you stay stuck in there until the air runs out."
     That doesn't scare me.
     Minako adds, "But don't worry, after you collapse I'll nurse you back to 
     Okay, that scares me.
     "Fine, I'll play along."  In a louder voice I thank Serenity and say this
took me completely by surprise.  Which isn't a lie, it's the first time she's
abducted me to make me attend my birthday party.
     She just smiles and says she hopes it'll take my mind off things.  I 
flinch a little at that, just how sensitive is she to our moods?  How much 
does she know?  Meantime I'd better smile and look happy.
     It's a good party and I have to keep remembering that I resent being 
brought here and I'm not really enjoying myself.  If I did want people fussing 
over me I'd be touched but it's just an annoyance.  I was doing all right and 
I don't need distraction.  I can handle my worries and regrets fine by myself. 

I don't need help, I never have.  I've always done things my way.  I don't 
care about birthdays and I think this is just a big waste of time.
     Meantime I'm dancing with the star of that "Jupiter Mission" video and  
noticing he's very good looking.  From the way he's studying me the feeling
seems mutual.  It's been a while and I can't remember what was so urgent that
I had to get back to work.  Nemesis seems very far away and they can't show 
up until a certain little girl is born.  So I suppose Crystal Tokyo can 
survive without my undivided attention for tonight at least.
     But I take a moment to break away and find Serenity.  As there's no one
in earshot I growl, "I'm only doing this to humour you.  I just want to make
that clear!"
     She nods and smiles, "I know you are and I appreciate your sacrifice for
the sake of this public relations event.  By the way your young man seems to
heading towards Makoto ..."  I don't wait for her to finish or dismiss me
before I move to intercept.  
     After all I'm supposed to be having a good time for the media's sake so 
I need an attractive partner.  It's certainly not jealousy as I don't want
to be here.  I don't appreciate the trouble they've been to and I didn't need
cheering up.  Most especially I don't love them for dragging me out of the 
hole I was digging myself into.
     And that's the truth.
     Would I lie to you?



Ideally I'd have posted this on April 17th but as I didn't start writing it 
until the 16th I just didn't have enough time.  Crystal Tokyo Snapshots will
be a very irregular series giving a quick look at the 30th century versions
of the Sailor Moon original cast.  Up next, Endymion.  When?  Don't hold your
breath, I've got no shortage of other projects.

For anyone's who's wondering about some of the other events Rei mentioned ...
The truth behind the recent disturbances in Crystal Tokyo can be found in
Frank Barr's, "Case of the Missing Senshi".  Rei's mindmeld with Margrave was
detailed in Andy Comb's, "Crystal Renegades" along with the background on
Calcite and Minako's marriage.  If you're wondering who Tom is then check
out, "Hunter's Moon" by Ben Harrison.  All these stories can be found on the
Sailor Moon Expanded homepage:

As for the story of Minako and Calcite's wedding day rest assured that 
will be told someday.  Along with the sordid details of their bachelor and
bachelorette parties.   Current working title is "Best Laid Plans ..." and
it'll probably be a shared SME story.  Watch for it

Mark Latus
April 17 1997


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