|A Year and Change|
|The Chibi Sailors|
SARAH UER had a number of differences from her mother, but one thing she shared was an inclination to act on her own. She wasn't quite as foolish--she could remember too much from her previous life to go about too carelessly.
Sarah had curbed that tendency more than ever before in the time before the birth of her second and third sister. In fact, she went through the longest period of model behavior (well, for her) of her life, because of her parents and her "Aunties."
Mamoru and Usagi were very worried about her third pregnancy. Pregnancy is never a trivial matter for a paraplegic, and twins . . . Sarah didn't have to read their thoughts to know how they felt. This was a time when Sarah worried about upsetting her mother and Mamo-chan, whom Sarah loved as if he were her father. Most of her "Aunties" were also expecting, and Setsuna and Minako, her favorites, had terrible troubles besides.
Sarah wasn't the only one who was on her best behavior. Ishtar, of course, was sensitive as ever, and Kimi was seldom very far from Ishtar, in distance or opinions. This made getting away with anything difficult, because Ishtar and Kimi were the most likely to inform the grownups about something they felt was too important to keep a secret. It would have been impossible to have a life if Kimi didn't usually give Sarah the benefit of a doubt, and if Ishtar didn't usually go along with Kimi.
It was Kimi who first reported to Sarah about ZoŽ. Sarah considered the problem carefully, giving it a lot of time (two minutes) and then said, "We should ask the Little Man. If we tell mama or Auntie Mako, they will worry even more." And Sarah persuaded ZoŽ to come with her. She did not have to ask ZoŽ or Zara to keep it a secret.
The Founder, or the Little Man as most of the Chibi Sailors called him, had a place beneath the house, beneath even the operations center in the secret second basement. The elevator took a long time to get there, so they took the stairs, through a door that Kimi had found with her magic eye. It was a long way down the stairs, though, and it began to scare Deja, though of course instead of saying she was scared, she complained.
"This is a foolish idea, Chibi-Usa," said Deja. "We should have told my mother instead. She would know what to do."
"Your mother is worried about your grandmother and the baby coming," retorted Sarah. "And don't call me Chibi-Usa. I will let okasan and Mamo-chan and the older senshi call me that, but not you, you little . . ."
Ishtar spoke up. "Please, don't you start arguing now. I think this place is scary, too, Deja."
At last they came to the entrance to the place. It was a door, but Zara could not unlock it, even with the help of Kimi's eye. "I think it has a spell on it."
ZoŽ tried to step through, but she could not. "It must be magic . . . I can't go around it, either."
Lily Chiba simply walked up to the door and knocked. There were odd noises for awhile and then the door opened.
The little man did not look much like a wizard when he appeared. He was wearing a smelly sweatsuit and socks that did not match--and shoes, for that matter. He sighed, looking at them all. "Whose idea was this?"
"Chibi-Usa's, of course," smirked Deja.
"Of course . . . ZoŽ, it was you that tried to get through the door? Not Lily?"
Lily spoke up. "It isn't polite to barge in. Mama and papa taught me that. But Sarah did not ask me what we should try first."
Sarah did a double take, and turned to the youngest of her half-sister's half-sisters. "You have powers now?"
"For awhile now." The precocious little mite, only four-and-a-half, transformed into a tiny sailor soldier with wings. "I can fly a little and I can go through things like mama." Then she transformed back. "Please don't tell mama, Sarah. Papa said not to tell yet."
The little man said, "Your papa is right. It would be better to wait until after the babies come, child." He patted Lily on the top of her head, and then moved on to ZoŽ, who was the tallest and oldest girl, actually older than Sarah. "Kimberly, do you see a sigil?"
Kimberly Chiba became Kimi Moon and opened her third eye. After a few moments, she said, "I can see something, ZoŽ. But I can't tell what it is. It might be a moon and something else."
The little man went to get one from among the many, many old books in his hideaway, found something in it, came back, and began working a spell. For a moment, a faint moon sign, larger than Sailor Moon's, appeared on ZoŽ's forehead. She also got the faint outline of something ringing the crown of her head, and ghostly wings.
Sarah said, "ZoŽ, you looked something like Aunt Nancy. Like a Moon Angel."
"That is not that surprising. You are, after all, not born of this world, child." The little man closed his book, and took one of Zoe's hands . "I think you will need an aide like the henshin wands the sailors of the first generation used to help them transform. At least until you get used to it."
"Artemis gave my mother hers," said Ishtar. "Could he help? You said he was coming."
"We will have his help," replied the little man, "And Luna's. But I am not sure when they will get here."
They did not have to wait long with their secrets. The day Usagi had her C-section, the other babies came: Rei's, Minako's, Naru's, Mako's . . .
It was the day of the first new moon of the new year.
Previous: Along the Charles
Next: The Family Neko
Story Index Main Index