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   VOLUME 2-1

Sailor Moon Cyber - Series Two: Volume One - The Hive

"I'm sorry Usako, but you can't expect me to just forgive and forget so easily!" Mamoru crossed his arms over his chest and stared up at Usagi and Leti from his seat on the couch. "Nhicodima has tried to kill all of us at one point or another and now all of a sudden he's supposed to be a 'Nice Guy' and all is forgiven? You will excuse me if I find that somewhat hard to swallow?"

"Mamo-chan, we were there. You'd think you would have learned to trust my judgement by now. I AM the champion of justice after all!" Usagi pouted and copied Mamoru's crossed-arm position.

"Look at it this way Mamoru," said Leti as she switched her gaze from the window to the couch. "Yes, it will be a little while before we know if we can trust him completely, but that doesn't mean that we have to make things worse by distrusting him outright. He trusts 'us' now, and if we betray that trust that would be a sure way to start him back on the road to evil don't you think?"

Mamoru shrugged and stared absently at the ceiling.

"Well," he grumbled. "Be that as it may, don't expect me to be hanging out and going to the baseball games with Nick any time soon."

"No one expects you to become his best friend." Leti replied. "Just give him a chance, that's all we are asking."

Mamoru nodded begrudgingly and Usagi smiled from ear to ear.

"Great!" Usagi quipped. "Now. who's hungry?" Her two friends shook their heads in mock disbelief and grinned as Usagi pulled Mamoru up from the couch, linked arms with him and Leti on either side and headed for the door.

Hotaru and Nick stood in the emptiness of what was about to become Nick's new apartment. Nick looked around nervously and inspected the walls, the carpet, the windows; while the Landlord looked on, smiling like a Cheshire cat. He turned and spoke softly to Hotaru.

"Are you sure about this? I mean, why here? Don't I already have a perfectly good place to live?"
"Oh sure," replied Hotaru. "If you happen to like living in a big black hole in the middle of nowhere with barely any furniture, no decorations whatsoever and no light to speak of, then yes, you have a beautiful place."

"Point taken." Nick smiled and looked over at the landlord, who stood with the lease papers in her hand, eager to close the deal. "All right, I think I'll take it!"

"Excellent!" the landlord beamed and showed him where to sign. "I'm sure you will love it here, and your sister will surely enjoy the playground out back!"

Nick nodded as he looked over the agreement and signed his name to the forms. He doubted that "his sister", would be overly interested in the playground, since she was at least a century older than the woman who stood before him right now. But, stranger things had been known to happen, and Pixie was definitely one of the stranger things that had happened to him in a long time. As if on cue, Pixie came running into the living room from the smaller of the two bedrooms and clung to Nick's leg.

"Can we live here? Huh? Huh?" she asked as she smiled up at him.

"Yes, I'm signing the papers now."

"Hooray!" shouted Pixie as she ran back to the bedroom to tell Chibi-Usa the good news. Nick chuckled and shook his head. At least shopping for furniture would be a simple task. A few well placed spells and this place would look like home. A brief flash of light out the window caught his eye for a moment, and he thought he saw something streaking across the sky, but then it was gone. Nick dismissed it as a figment of his imagination and looked back at Hotaru.

"So, want to help me move in?"

"I wouldn't miss it!" Hotaru smiled warmly and hugged him around the neck.

Across the city, two figures stood silhouetted in the setting sun, standing atop a large office building, taking in their new surroundings. Dressed in deep crimson body suits, the two beings wore metallic helmets bearing ominous looking masks. On the chest of each of their outfits was a large, black, eight-pointed star.

The first of the two checked a small computer readout that was attached to its wrist.

"This is the place." It spoke with a robotic sounding voice, filtered through its helmet. "The planet they call Earth. Initial scans indicate that reports of vast energy sources here were not in error."

"So it would appear." The second creature replied and adjusted its visor to zoom in on the humans who walked the streets below. "These beings appear to hold an incredible amount of life energy. It should be possible to harvest enough life force here to feed the hive for decades to come."

"Agreed. Cloak the cruiser and bring it down into a lower orbit. We will then set the Queen's plan into action."

"For the Hive!" the first saluted the other with its hand clenched into a fist across its chest.

"For the Hive." The other returned the salute and chuckled with a hollow, sick sounding laugh. "And death to those that oppose the great Queen's will."

The first bowed and entered a code into its wrist-pad, activating the ship's transporter and disappearing into the night. Its partner looked out over the city once again then held out its hands in front of itself. A brief flash of light shot between its hands and a large serpentine staff appeared. It chuckled to itself once again and jumped from the rooftop, falling, then slowing its decent several feet above the ground and landing on the sidewalk. Several screams accompanied its arrival, to which it paid no mind and pointed its staff towards a group of teenagers who were just heading out for a night on the town. A sickening green light shot from the staff and surrounded the children, drawing the life energy from their bodies and back into the collection rod. The teenagers collapsed in a heap, breathing raggedly, and close to death. The creature laughed again and held its staff above its head in triumph.

"Success! Their life force is perfect for our needs. Now the collection begins in earnest!"

"I wouldn't be so sure of that now if I were you." The alien turned towards the female voice to see three women in what appeared to be a uniform of some sort. It was the taller, green haired one that that had spoken. "I am Sailor Pluto. Sailor Neptune sensed your evil presence and we are here to put an end to whatever it is you have planned."

"I doubt that you are capable Earther, but you are welcome to try." The creature stepped back into a battle stance and readied its staff.

"I've got him." Said Sailor Uranus as she took a step forward. "WORLD SHAKING!"

The energy blast from Uranus' attack streaked across the ground and connected against the body armor of her foe, with no visible result. The creature cocked its head slightly and chuckled low in its throat. "Pathetic!"

The alien leapt so quickly, the Senshi never even saw it leave the ground, and then, suddenly it was upon them, knocking Uranus to the ground, then spinning and driving its staff towards Pluto. Sailor Pluto managed to bring her Key Staff up to block at the last possible moment, but was hurled backwards by the force of the blow none-the-less.

The creature spun again and connected a powerful kick into Neptune, who fell back, slamming her head against a wall and slumped into unconsciousness. Uranus screamed in anger and dove at the alien, attempting to tackle it to the ground, but it sidestepped quickly and brought it's staff down across her back, sending her once again to the pavement.

The battle continued in this manner for several minutes more, until all three Outer Senshi lay unconscious at the feet of the alien predator. It leveled its staff at the Sailors and drained their energies. The girls, drained of power, reverted to their normal selves, and lay sprawled on the pavement.

"Intriguing." Spoke the creature. "These particular earthers seem to have some type of metamorphic ability. And the energies I took from them is far greater that of the others. This will require some further study." The creature scanned the fallen Senshi with its helmet visor, then activated its transport device to return to the ship to store its newly acquired energy and to study the results of its scan.

That was how Leti, Mamoru and Usagi found them as they came running around the corner to find out what all the screaming and commotion had been about. Usagi gasped in shock and held tightly to Mamoru's arm. Leti ran forward and checked Haruka for a pulse. It was weak, but there.

"They're still alive." Said Leti and she walked quickly over to the other group of teens and checked them for breathing. "But we have to get them to a hospital now!"

Mamoru ran down the street to a payphone to call an ambulance. Usagi knelt slowly beside Setsuna and ran a hand through her hair.

"It will be ok guys. It's just got to be ok." Usagi looked at Leti with pleading in her eyes, as moisture built up and a tear ran down her cheek.

"They'll survive Usagi-chan, but I swear. whoever did this to them, will not be so lucky!" Leti looked up and choked back tears of rage. "They will feel the wrath of SunFire!"

The End of Series Two, Part One