You can guess the crossover. Ranma won't wear a fuku, and also no tuxedo. He won't be some re-incarnation. He is just... Ranma. I want to avoid numerous stuff that became the norm in these crossovers but that actually is pretty stupid. I also will make it clear that while Ranma and the Senshi learn new techniques, I won't sink to the insane levels of the canon, where it became an absurd arms race in the later parts of both series. It's a common weakness in anime series that the power level increases to ridiculous levels. (In my opinion, DBZ is the worst offender in that regard in the anime world) I will try to stay on Earth and try to give everything a bit more realistic feeling (as much as it as it is possible) but don't worry... hilarity will still ensure!

Needless to say that I will slaughter the canon of both series, but I guess you expected this. Also I don't have any rights to both series, but I guess you know that, too.

This chapter also gave me a nasty stumbling block that stopped progress for quite some time, but it's not what you would expect. (more about it at the end)

I do have a page for the story at TV Tropes, the link is found in my bio. Please help to contribute to it if you feel like it.

As always, I try to answer all reviews and I'm always happy for reviews.

Note that specific notes are at the end of the chapter, to avoid spoilers.


Chapter 45: Battle for the World, Part III - Infinity

It looked a bit like a standoff in one of these western films, only that instead of wind blowing over dry ground, it was raining heavily. Soun had never seen any Youma close-up - though that one Daimon had been bad enough - and was a bit startled at the freaks that Happosai had brought as his reinforcements. Genma was less intimidated by them; having already seen enough Youma to roughly gauge their power.

"Nothing else to say?" Happosai mocked them, having expected a heated verbal defense.

"Why bother? It doesn't hold any meaning to you anyway," Genma said before holding his arm into the rain, turning into a big and quite dangerous looking panda bear.

The Youma at Happosai's side looked a bit startled at that revelation. "Magic is afoot! No good!" one of them hissed, looking alarmed.

"I know that, dolt! That's already all the magic he can do, so don't wet yourselves!" Happosai silenced him. He thanked all goodess these idiots were just a means to end and nothing more. That was why he'd worked alone when he was still alive - in retrospect, taking students had been a big error.

Happosai then eyed his transformed former student. "If you think this gives you an advantage, you must be quite desperate. I'll still kill you... of course after you suffered first."

"Stand back! This will get ugly!" Soun called into the house while waiting for their enemies to make the first move. Their enemies did the same.

Inside the house, Nodoka and Ukyo had made a run for their respective weapons - both thanking fortune they had decided to take them along. While they did not intend to join the battle themselves - Ukyo because she didn't think she could help much and and Nodoka because she didn't want to endanger her unborn child - they certainly didn't want to be completely helpless in case something did go wrong.

Tofu on the other hand knew he had to sit out this battle; even though he was very deadly against human opponents, Youma anatomy was vastly different - if they were even alive in the first place - and his art useless against them. And while Konatsu had not carried any weapons since ending his horrible old life, he would not let anyone take away what he had gained since then. Kasumi hopefully would understand him borrowing the knives from the knife block in the kitchen.

Those that had seen Happosai the first time were shocked at how the description of his new look didn't come close to relaying how disgusting it actually was. With these horns and four tentacles growing out of his back, he now really looked like one of these lust demons from trashy hentai stuff.

"He looks even more horrible than the first time," Saeko whispered to her husband, remembering her disgust when that monster still had been alive. Now it was worse.

Kaizo barely hid his own disgust. "He looks like something from these insane painters I read about."

It was one of the Youma, who blinked first.

"Enough!" she screamed, lashing out with something looking like a barbed whip. Of course the sloppy strike missed by a mile, but that was the signal and the battle was on.

"Concentrate on these two! The others are no danger!" Happosai called, putting his main attention on Genma, since he could see that Soun's skill had deteriorated quite a bit over the years.

Genma on the other hand was as dangerous as ever - perhaps even more so than in the past. One would think a big and bulky bear would be horrible at fighting and rely on brute strength only. What his former student did right now however proved that idea very wrong. It even looked somewhat surreal to see a panda fight with aerial maneuvers.

They are neither strong or skilled... but they are enough to distract us, Genma realized after mere seconds, now knowing what Happosai's tactic was. Not that he could buy anything from that, since he still had to deal with them.

It happened once. I can deal with it again! Soun thought while giving as best as he could. Again monsters had invaded his home. Even though he still felt nervous with Happosai's presence, it no longer was the crippling fear of the past. He would remove the intruders from his home.

They both knew they could not use the same tactic they did the last time they faced him. Happosai was no longer human and they had no idea how big his energy reserves now were, or if that would even hinder him since Youma seemed to work on different basic principles.

For the moment everyone else could only try to keep away from the fight unfolding in the garden.

"Horrible, and we can't do anything about it..." Artemis said, not caring who might hear.

Luna - only lightly - smacked him with a paw. "Great going, Arty! Right in front of them!"

"Ah! Talking cats?!" Ukyo gasped while Konatsu nearly dropped a knife in surprise. They had seen enough weird things it didn't cause them any kind of crisis, and then they saw that the others only reacted mildly surprised. "You act like this is an everyday occurrence."

"Honestly, after all these horrible monsters, talking cats are not that shocking anymore. That, and they don't exactly look threatening, you know?" Nabiki commented, amazed at herself taking something that normally should be impossible so calmly.

"So we kept our mouths shut for nothing?" Luna grumbled, being unable to talk for days not having helped her mood.

Artemis knew Luna's pregnancy made her cranky at times. "Luna, I... WATCH OUT!"

Everyone barely managed to jump out of the way when one of the Youma was thrown through the wrecked doors. It flew through the entire room before crashing through the closed sliding door of the kitchen, the light wood and rice paper offering no resistance. -CRASH!- A loud crash, followed by the sound of stuff falling out of broken cabinets, signaled the Youma's landing. Even now, a small part of Kasumi could only grimace at the thought of what her normally pristine kitchen now looked like.

Foaming with anger, the Youma looking like a feral woman stormed out of the wrecked kitchen. "I won't stand for such a treatment!" Seeing she was not alone, her expression turned from outrage to downright sinister. "Compensation... Time to make fresh human steaks."

"Oh no, you won't!" Akane hissed. She would not duck away, despite the fact she was not that effective against Youma.

"Ha ha, you?" the Youma laughed, before jumping to take a swipe out of one of the adults. -crac- "Ooouugh! You little bitch!"

Akane's sharp kick had not been enough to snap the Youma's spine, only crack it. That only served to make it madder. However, seeing that these monsters could be hurt brought the other martial artists out of their hesitation and they ganged up on the Youma.

"This really is too close..." Ikuko gulped.

"I know," Nodoka replied, holding her sword in a defensive position in case she needed to protect them. "I wish I could help, but going head-first into battle wouldn't be very smart in my condition."

Ikuko understood too well how Nodoka right at the moment was not only responsible for her own life.

"Gods... this is sheer madness," Nabiki said in fear while watching the family room turning into a torn battlefield. This was reality telling her that just being smart alone wouldn't cut it at times.

-Wong!- Ukyo had smashed her big spatula full force onto the Youma's head, before following up with the sharp side, causing a gaping wound. The Youma howled in pain, fighting like a rabid animal. They of course were not unhurt, while the Youma got regenerative powers.

Urgh, I have to give it to Ranma that he's really good, considering he can go and win a one-on-one with these monsters, Akane thought, jumping back to evade a strike that would have ripped her stomach open. Though, the monster indeed was getting weaker.

"Ow!" Ukyo gasped when one strike caused her to drop her spatula. Thankfully, Akane right away distracted the monster and Konatsu gave her something else as a weapon. She didn't want to know where he got the big cleaver from - most likely Kasumi's kitchen - and straight away slammed it down onto the Youma's head. The effect was different from what she had imagined.

"Arglllhh..." Already weakened, the Youma couldn't stop the cleaver from embedding itself deeply into her head; it was a sickening sight. To make sure, Konatsu slammed a big knife into the Youma's gut and slit her open and Akane kicked her hard into the head, causing her neck to finally snap.

That finally was enough to kill her and she crumbled to dust.

Hitome Aino looked ready to faint, not having expected to be this close to any kind of fighting when they had left inner Tokyo. This had come as a nasty surprise to her and her husband had to support her, otherwise her legs would have given out.

Outside, meanwhile, Happosai was disappointed at the lack of quality in his helpers.

True, he had known from the start that they were little more than bottom-feeders and thus should have expected them to only be useful to make his enemies waste their strength, but he still felt offended by their weakness. Additionally, Genma and Soun both clearly had used the time since their last confrontation to beef up.

Soun had grown noticeably stronger and faster, also appearing more brave than last time. Clearly, the man had went through intense training. And while he would never be able to reclaim the edge he'd held in his youth, the man's improvement still was significant. As for Genma... it was ridiculous to see a panda fight like that, but his skill combined with a bear's strength made quite a frightening combination. It also was surprising how he could turn invisible on a whim.

Suddenly, Genma took hold of one Youma, and... -BLOM- It had to be some kind of really destructive technique, as it ripped the Youma into pieces. You've held out on me, Genma. Too bad for you...

Seeing that only two Youma were left - another one had been taken out before - he decided to finally take off the gloves.

"Good help is so hard to find these days. Looks like I have to do it myself if I want to get results," he complained loudly, now that fun and games were over for him. "Granted, I no longer am the man I used to be, but this new form has certain advantages."

"What the...?" Soun wondered when seeing Happosai stand there, seemingly not bothering with any kind of defense. -Blooooom- "Woah!"

All of a sudden a massive fireball erupted from Happosai, hot enough that the rain evaporated meters before actually encountering it. The two remaining Youma had no chance and were vaporized by the heat. The pressure wave slammed Genma against the house, while his fur was singed. Soun's clothes caught on fire, and he was forced to jump into the nearby koi pond to douse them. However, when the fire disappeared, Happosai stood in the middle of the blast zone unharmed.

"Lovely, isn't it?" he laughed, "That's the vastly improved version of my old fireblast." As if to underline it, there was another explosion, turning the garden into a wasteland and scorching the side of the house. "I'll enjoy what comes next, and you won't!"

Genma and Soun didn't hesitate to attack him directly, now that he was alone.

It quickly proved to be a quite uneven fight. Both of them held no magical powers, and they were not used to fighting a Youma as strong as this. Happosai's nature combined with his skill gave him a massive advantage. That, and having four extra appendages made it much easier for him to fight both of them at the same time.

The biggest problem however was his ridiculous combustion powers.

This is insane! How can we fight someone who can blow up stuff with a thought?! Soun thought slightly panicked while jumping away when Happosai again caused an explosion around himself.

Genma for his part realized that turning invisible didn't work against Happosai, who could somehow sense his presence anyway - or perhaps it just was the strong rainfall causing an outline of him to appear - a logical weakness of his technique.

"See what I mean?" Happosai gloated. "But all things must come to an end."

Something else exploded around him, this time a vacuum he'd created and then released. The pressure wave smashed Genma and Soun back against the house, and this time the wood splintered, ripping down part of the wall in the process.

Seeing these two would need a bit to get up again, Happosai turned his attention to the audience, in his arrogance no longer feeling these two could be any kind of threat to him.

"Bunch of weaklings. You think you can hurt me after how I dealt with these two?" he laughed. "Don't worry, your deaths will be quick; I'll incinerate you in a mere second. But first..." If anything, his expression became even more disturbing. "So much selection. Though, I prefer young meat and I've already sampled these two."

Kasumi and Nabiki gasped and paled when they saw him turning his attention to them.

Oh! No, no! Not again! Nabiki repeated over and over, the horrible memories of him violating her coming back up.

"Anyone daring to interfere with my fun is DEAD!" Happosai hissed and the sheer dark aura he radiated forced everyone back. "Good. Now, I do prefer the more mature one first..."

Kasumi saw him turning his attention solely to her, his four slimy tentacles twitching like dicks excited at the prospect of violating her. Her memory of the first time being violated by Happosai came back, only this would be many times worse - something out of a horrible nightmare.

Eyes wide in terror... "EEEEEEKKKKKKKKKK!" She screamed as loud as she could, hoping that someone... anyone would save her from meeting such a horrible fate.

...

In central Tokyo, Sailor Moon was being busy with turning a Youma's head into paste, when all of a sudden the Silver Crystal started glowing. "What in all names...?" Suddenly it discharged some energy, which blasted off into the dark sky. Not wasting any time wondering about it, she finally killed the Youma.

"What was that?" Endymion asked, walking up to her side.

Moon scratched her head in confusion while looking at the again inactive Silver Crystal. "I honestly have no idea. The crystal just acted up out of nowhere. I wonder what this was about?"

They could not waste more thought about it when they saw most of their friends approach them in a run. Just one look at the expression Ranma and Mercury held was enough to know that there were bad news about to be shared.

...

"Scream as much as you want, it won't help you..." Happosai almost sang, his tentacles suddenly darting forward, shredding Kasumi's blouse and bra into pieces.

"NO!" Kasumi gasped, feeling already violated with her upper body now being bare.

"Oh yes... oh... what is that?" Happosai stopped his advance on her when suddenly silvery light descended from the dark skies.

The silvery light slammed into Kasumi and Happosai had to take several steps back, almost being blinded by the light. When the spots vanished from his vision, he was was met with Kasumi being surrounded by the silvery light, her hair having turned white and a faint crescent moon glowing on her forehead. She also no longer looked afraid, but instead very angry.

"You fiend!" She screamed in outrage, then the light blasted out of her body like a moving wall.

Everyone else was not bothered by the light - it instead actually felt really peaceful - but for Happosai it was a different matter. "No... Argh! ... Yaaahhhrrgh!" To him it felt like being burned alive, before a powerful explosion of light slammed him hard against an intact part of the perimeter wall.

"Oh..." The borrowed energy being spent, Kasumi's hair returned to normal and she felt very weak on her legs. Thankfully, Tofu caught her before she would fall.

"I got you." Holding her close, he could feel a strong heartbeat, so she most likely was just exhausted from whatever she just did. "I don't know what you just did, but it certainly made an impact."

"I... don't know either. I just wished for help... And suddenly my only wish was to punish this monster," she said while holding close on him.

In the garden, Happosai slowly pushed himself up. Whatever that energy had been, it had hurt him very badly, feeling like he had third degree burns all over his body. It also had weakened him considerably - enough so that he felt staying alive (or at whatever state Youma were) was more important than his revenge. However, his plan hit a snag right then.

"Meeow! Fch-fch-fcchhhh!"

"Youch! My eyes!" Happosai screamed when a white furball sudden jumped into his face and next he saw no more when his eyes got hurt by something sharp.

Artemis knew this normally would have been a really stupid thing to do, but seeing he was the only one to see the Youma trying to get away, he, in a rare moment of of bravado, decided to make sure he wouldn't. Of course he was not suicidal. After thoroughly scratching the eyes with his claws, he quickly jumped off and ran back into the house.

"That was dumb of you, Arty!" Luna hissed at the wet male cat, then her expression softened. "Dumb... but still brave."

He took her earlier angry words in stride. That's her way of saying she's proud of me.

Stumbling around half-blind while his eyes were slowly healing, Happosai was unprepared when he got attacked. Genma and Soun had gotten their second wind - very much helped by the strange light - and now wasted no time to attack while that monster was still down. That of course meant using lethal force.

Already reeling from the horrible strikes... "Urrgh!" Happosai screamed when several big knives embedded themselves into his back, thrown by Konatsu from a safe distance with deadly accuracy. Stumbling back... -CRASH!- Akane had used her great strength to grab a heavy stone statue that had been ripped off its foundation by one of the explosions and smashed it over the monster's head with all of her might, breaking off his horns..

-Clang!- That in turn was followed by Ukyo smashing a big spatula onto his head, which made his head ring. Even Nodoka decided it was time to attack, pregnant or not. They needed to get rid of the monster now, or they would regret it. Her sword strikes were fast and Happosai screamed out when she hacked off his tentacles - the symbolism not being lost on everyone else.

"Saotome! ... Let's end this..." Soun said with finality, knowing they needed to deal the killing blow soon or lose the advantage.

Spotting a broken support beam from the wall of the house that got damaged. That reminded Genma of the time he'd dealt the killing blow to that cat demon by impaling it on a broken pole. The huge panda growled and pointed at it. It was clear to Soun what he meant.

Taking hold of Happosai's limbs, they dashed to the broken beam and slammed him onto the sharp end as hard as they could.

"Arrrrgghh-l-l-l!" Happosai screamed, seeing the thick wooden beam emerge from his chest. "No... Still need... my revenge... Gaahhhhrr-gg-ll..."

It was sickening to watch. Unlike other Youma, his stages of disintegration was like peeling an onion. First his skin dissolved to dust, followed my the muscle tissue and finally his bones, all while he was twitching. They did not notice the glowing particles sinking into the ground.

Deep underground, the glowing particles rained by Happosai's statue, which right away started to crumbled like those of every Youma destroyed. Its explosion signaled his final end.

For some moments, they looked in silence at the place where Happosai's dust was washed away by the rain, then Soun fell to his knees. "Free! Finally free..."

Kasumi still was too much out of it, but Akane and Nabiki had never before seen their father like this. While he'd already changed after the first confrontation with Happosai, now he looked like a huge burden had been taken off him. He certainly put up no resistance when they carefully helped him into the house.

Nodoka meanwhile approached the badly shivering Genma, ignoring how she already was soaked to the skin by the strong rains. The big panda carefully embraced her and she knew Genma was also trying to process that this monster was finally gone and would never haunt him again.

"Come... let's get you inside and changed back." That said, she led him back into the house.

Of course the family room was pretty much a ruin and the kitchen was in chaos. However, they had survived, and that was the one true important thing.


...back in central Tokyo...

In central Tokyo, the events of Nerima were unknown; only later would they learn what had almost happened. No, they had different troubles at the moment. They had finally managed to re-converge in an area that had been cleared of Youma activity and listened to the news that the whole battle was just one huge and nasty stalling tactic and of the dark crystal towers having been erected elsewhere over the world.

They did not take these news very well.

"Just a diversion?" Sailor Moon looked pale, trying to process such casual disregard for life. "All this... All this bloodshed and they just did it to keep all of us busy? Thousands of Youma seen as disposable just to distract us?"

She got no answer, which actually was answer enough. How someone could even cook up such a tactic was something they had difficulties to understand. Despite what they had already witnessed, this was a new level - all the earlier confrontations paled compared to this. Only a sick mind could have come up with something like that.

Though, one of them could imagine it well enough - not being baffled by it at all.

"It doesn't surprise me, considering all the atrocities they committed long before your time," Pluto added, then looked grim. "It's these towers that concern me. From the description alone I can guess they must have something to do with energy distribution, but I can't fathom to which end."

Typing, Mercury calculated something on a world map according to the reports Ranma related to her about where on the world these towers had appeared. "It's clearly a pattern, but to know more I would have to get close to one of these for an analysis."

"Whatever they are for, it can't be good. Pretty obvious we need to destroy these as quick as possible," Endymion said.

Ranma was distracted for a moment, listening to her earpiece, before looking up. "That won't be easy. Each tower is guarded; and by the sound of it by the actually dangerous creeps."

"It's never easy, isn't it?" Venus sighed.

"No, it's not. Not that I expected... Hm?" Endymion stopped himself when seeing a bright light appear in the cloud-covered sky. "What is that now?"

The light grew into a big sphere and in it appeared a white face with only one eye - they recognized Germatoid. Due to all the current trouble with the Dark Kingdom, they almost forgotten about the Death Busters, only to now get a reminder why it was a bad idea to put less attention on an equally dangerous threat. Germatoid for his part looked quite pleased.

"Ha ha, onto your knees, world, and make your final prayers. We are very thankful that you delayed the Dark Kingdom from conquering your planet. We would wish good health and a long life for you, but sadly, sadly that won't come to be. Ha ha!"

Germatoid's grin became downright sinister. "The time has come, our great Pharaoh is about to arrive and make a tasty snack out of your planet. You should feel honored; you will all give your little lives for something greater than your puny minds could ever imagine."

"Not good, not good at all!" Mercury hissed, unable to get any useful data due to all the interference. "If Pharaoh 90 appears in outer space, how are we supposed to stop him?"

"He he he, but out great Pharaoh believes in sportsmanship, so this is to the Senshi brats." They had the feeling as if Germatoid was really looking down at them.

"Come to the ruins of your kingdom on the Moon. Oh, and be punctual, otherwise the Pharaoh will start to feast on this world without your presence. Ha ha ha..." With that final laughter, Germatoid's face vanished.

"Oh no..." Ceres gulped. They had not expected having to fight both battles at the same time.

"糞! ちくしょう! 畜生! 死ねえ! くそくらえ!" (deepest Japanese gutter curses, better left untranslated) Ranma cursed, tapping against her earpiece. "You heard that, didn't you? What are we supposed to do now?"

"Stop all what you are doing and get onto the Moon. We can manage here without you for a while, but Senshi are the only ones that can travel to the Moon. After all, you told me you did so before." Isamu could be heard cursing, he also must have thought that the Pharaoh would arrive after they had dealt with the Dark Kingdom.

"Ranma." That was Khu-Lon on the channel. "I know my great-granddaughter and Mu-Tsu will want to come with you, but I know of the limitation. Make it clear to them they have to stay."

"Alright..." Ranma looked to the others. "We need to get onto the Moon, pronto! Since they can take only one extra, it's me... No, no discussion!"

Xian-Pu and Mu-Tsu looked ready to argue, but then sighed in defeat since they knew Ranma had a point. "And I thought we are behind being forced to watch you go into battle without us..." Xian-Pu sighed again.

"You still know the spell that protects us in outer space?" Mercury asked Moon, wanting to make sure they wouldn't fail due to something as simple as Sailor Moon being forgetful.

"Of course I know it." Sailor Moon rolled her eyes at the question. "After all, you forced me to recite it so often it would be hard for me to forget it."

A few moments later they were ready to leave.

"Please come back in good health. I really don't like staying behind while you face that huge monster," Mu-Tsu told Jupiter while the Senshi were moving into position for their teleport circle.

If anything, Jupiter looked resigned. "You know I can only promise you to try. This is the first time we ever face something like that. I know the others are really afraid, they just don't show it." She then suddenly hugged him. "I'm afraid as well, but I have to do this."

"I hate feeling so useless..." Mu-Tsu admitted.

Mu-Tsu then had to let go and step back when they closed the circle. Wordlessly, he watched the light surround them, before they disappeared for their journey to the Moon, leaving behind nothing but a dry circle.

He looked to the dry spot for a bit longer, before turning to Xian-Pu. "Let's do our part here."

"Yes, let's go," she agreed, not wanting to say more at the moment.

Xian-Pu knew that this was Mu-Tsu's way to cope with the feeling of being unable to help in any way with the danger that was waiting on the Moon. He needed to do something to distract himself from the feeling, and going headfirst back into battle was what he chose to do. Not exactly the healthiest coping mechanism, but there was nothing she could do about that.

Looking up into the storm-covered skies, she hoped she would see her friends alive again.

o

"Now of all times..." Beryl hissed, having seen the declaration in her crystal ball.

They were so close to victory - only a little more time. Why did this damned Pharaoh 90 have to arrive now of all times? It threatened to ruin everything they had so carefully set up. Entering the cave of Metallia, she walked up to the big vessel that held her energy.

"Master, the Pharaoh has announced his imminent arrival!"

"Yes, I know. His arrival puts our plans in great danger. Even though my chains are almost broken, as long as they do exist I can not confront him directly," Metallia said, sounding very displeased, her dark energy vibrating dangerously.

"What are we to do?" Beryl asked, feeling quite concerned they could lose everything so close to the goal.

There was a moment of silence, before Metallia admitted, "Nothing directly. Hasten the efforts to get the dark crystal towers online. As much as it pains, we do need the Senshi to take on the Pharaoh."

Having to rely on the Senshi to take care of the problem. This is humiliating. Beryl of course didn't say so aloud. "This is... unfortunate."

"Use any means to animate our subjects to work faster... ANY means," Metallia ordered her.

She knew what her master meant with this order. The Youma inside the towers would now be 'encouraged' to work at their limit and beyond it. Every means short of destroying them were allowed to make things go as fast as possible.

"As you command, Master!" Beryl said and left quickly.


...the surface of the Moon...

It was in utter silence that they appeared on the surface of the Moon, a little distance away from the ruins of the great palace. They had not thought they would return here any time soon - after all, the Moon was not exactly a place you could reach on a whim. However, there was little time to wonder about this turn of events.

"Welcome! We've been expecting you!"

They did not know how Germatoid had spoken to them, since there was no air - most likely some kind of magic carrying his voice. That however was only of minor importance compared to the frightening sight before them. It looked like some sort of tower made of hundreds of Daimons. The monsters had mostly fused together, but there were countless limbs and heads sticking out, giving the whole thing a downright sickening appearance coming right out of a horror novel.

At the top of this living tower sat Germatoid and Kaolinite in thrones that also were made of Daimons, underlining the horror vibe. They also looked like they were seeing themselves as a royal couple - a king and a queen looking down at the peasants.

"Oh, looks like you are impressed by our little tower of doom - the fruit of Germatoid's genius. You didn't really think we'd just stand there and allow you to harm us, do you?" Kaolinite asked them with a mocking undertone. "However, if you want to try anyway, feel free to do so."

Mars would have liked to do so, but even though her fire was magical in nature, it still needed oxygen to keep burning or it'd just fizzle out. Uranus didn't have that problem. "You talk too big!" she shouted, firing off a glowing orb that raced towards these two.

Suddenly, the mass of fused-together Daimons reacted none of them expected. The pink mass shifted and twisted, swallowing Uranus' attack whole. Somewhere inside it then just fizzled out, causing no visible damage - not even some superfacial burns.

"You can't be serious," Uranus said in utter astonishment at how her attack had been no-selled.

Mercury tried next, her frost arrow however suffering the same fate. A small patch of the tower froze over for a few moments, but the ice then slid off, having done nothing at all. "That's..." Putting her bow away, she called for her computer. "Oh-uh! That thing is so big, we would need to do something serious to actually destoy it."

"How serious?" Ranma asked, looking at the tower-thing carefully. That was another thing in a long list of fucked-up things she'd seen.

"Enough firepower that we would create a new crater on the Moon in the resulting explosion," Mercury answered. "Not something even we can come up with on a whim."

To the Senshi, Mercury's analysis was downright baffling and made them realize that violence wouldn't get them anywhere with that... thing. At least not without straining themselves way beyond the limit before the Pharaoh had even arrived. It also created the question why they hadn't been attacked in return.

"Ha ha ha! Nice try, though of course ineffective! As you can see, your attacks are utterly useless," Germatoid mocked them.

"Alright, you have us where you wanted us to be. Where is the Pharaoh then? You were loud enough in announcing him," Pluto said, feeling she needed to stall for time so that they could find a solution to this dilemma.

Now Kaolinite chuckled as well. "You are so eager to meet him? Oh, don't worry about his arrival; that will be at any moment. Pay close attention." She then pointed up into the black sky over the Moon.

Indeed, there was a big zone in the blackness that now more looked like a miniature nebula. In the middle of it something started to become stronger by the moment. Then bright red light started to stream out of something that looked like a tear. Than another one appeared, followed by the next one. It looked as if space itself was being violently ripped open - a highly disturbing sight.

"Bad... really bad!" Mercury said while hectically typing on her computer. "This is unbelievable, we are looking at a widening rip in the fabric of time and space. There's something in there... something my computer is unable to get any data on."

"Don't even try," Germatoid snorted, "The great Pharaoh is a higher being you will never be able to understand. I also wouldn't recommend attempting to do so, since one look at his true self would destroy your cute minds instantly."

"Guys, please tell me he's just trying to make this Pharaoh appear even scarier than he already is," Ceres gulped, not liking the idea of becoming a vegetable just by looking at the Pharaoh.

"No, he's not lying." Saturn looked disturbed while said said this. "I only remember now... from Mistress 9. The Pharaoh is hiding most of himself in a cosmic cloud. Should he dismiss it, the horrible and incomprehensible sight would destroy our minds in mere seconds."

"Oh no..." Moon suddenly got a very bad feeling about this.

"I guess... this is where I have to say goodbye," Saturn realized with resigned acceptance. "After all, that's what I'm here for - destroy the invader, even if it costs me my life."

"Don't even think about it," Pluto stopped her. "You won't have to sacrifice yourself; we'll all make sure of it."

"Noble, noble," chuckled Germatoid, before outright laughing. "Of course our master is prepared for this and a power that can destroy an entire planet is no more enough! Even if you try to give her strength, your bodies will fail you before you can hope to overcome him."

"Look, it's happening! It's finally happening!" Kaolinite said happily.

Indeed, the tear in space and time and widened considerably and... something... started to emerge from it.

They were unable to make out any details, since it more looked like a brightly colored cloud was emerging from the hole. Even this early they already got the feeling of something horrible being inside that cloud. That thing also was massive - the tear must have opened quite the distance away, otherwise they would have been unable to see that thing now in its whole. They looked in horror when the huge eye poking out of the cloud emerged from the hole.

Finally, the tear closed, the Pharaoh having arrived.

The whole cloud was huge - perhaps as big as Greater Toyko - and the equally massive eye was looking down onto them. "Both of you have done well. Most efficient."

"I thank you, great Pharaoh." Germaoid then looked to Kaolinite. "As you can see, Kaolinite has fully embraced your gift."

"Yes... You have sworn eternal loyalty to me. You shall take the space that Mistress 9 left due to her failure."

Kaolinite bowed. "I thank you, master! Your generosity knows no bounds."

The eye then shifted slightly, looking to the Senshi. "Resistance is futile. Even sacrificing yourselves would not stop me now. I will destroy you... but only after I absorbed your entire world. You will then beg me to end your suffering."

Suddenly, the whole tower of Daimons started to dissolve, the monsters being absorbed into the cloud. Only the thrones on which Germatoid and Kaolinite sat remained, hovering far above the surface of the Moon. Both of them laughed in glee at these events, looking down mockingly at their enemies.

"It is over. You should feel honored, as few have the chance to watch me devour a world from the outside." It was pretty obvious the Pharaoh only said this to rub salt into the wound.

"We have to try anyway... Even if it kills us." Sailor Moon said and looked at the Silver Crystal. She knew, using it at full power would kill her.

"Yes, but even if we manage to destroy him by dying ourselves, who is then going to stop the Dark Kingdom?" Venus asked, exposing the dilemma they were in.

"No, I don't believe that..." Endymion looked quite desperate. "I won't accept that! I WON'T!"

"What do you want to do about it, little man?" Kaolinite mocked him from far above, though her voice sounded like she was next to him.

"You can't do anything," Germatoid laughed.

"I would give everything to save the world... everything... even my own life."

"The deed will be done now. Worry not, for your turn will come soon." That said, Pharaoh 90 slowly started to drift off towards Earth.

Holding a tight grip on his sword, Endymion noticed that the Golden Crystal was glowing, Bright light erupted from it, encompassing everyone. It felt... so good... so right. It felt like a warm embrace that reduced their fears significantly. All of a sudden things didn't seem so hopeless.

"You would have made such a good king. Inside your heart you are fully willing to give up yourself to save everyone else. You have passed the final test - the one no one told you about - and are found worthy."

"That voice..." Moon recognized it from their adventure when searching for the Golden Crystal.

The voice chuckled. "It was modeled after us, but we are something else, though we are well aware of your quest. We are the essence, we speak for the magic of Earth. We are not truly alive but shaped by all people's hearts - the true source of Earth's magic. You are at your most desperate and through the Golden Crystal, we answer."

"I thought the mana tree is the source of all magic on Earth?" Mercury asked, seeing the contradiction in that statement.

"While Helios is indeed a wise man, even he followed this misconception. The mana tree without doubt is the heart that pumps all magic through the world. Should that heart ever stop beating, magic indeed would be dead. Yet it does not produce the blood it pumps."

"Then why...?" her follow-up question was cut short.

"Why the tree had suffered from 10.000 years of low magic? Accursed Jusenkyo not only greedily kept most of the magic for itself, but also blocked the ability of people's hearts to replenish magic. This is very complicated to explain..."

"Well, that's all nice and good, but perhaps stopping him would be a good idea now?!" Ranma called, pointing to the Pharaoh, who was slowly drifting towards Earth.

"Yes..." the voice of Earth's magic sighed.

"What... what is the meaning of this?!" the Pharaoh's voice exploded in confusion when all of a sudden some sort of invisible wall stopped his progress.

"This is only a temporary solution. True victory can only come from within yourselves. Remember your past lessons well, for they will enable you to find the true strength to defeat the Pharaoh once an for all," the voice cautioned them. "Seek the power of Infinity."

The glow around them intensified and lifted them off the surface of the Moon, only stopping when they were well off the surface and halfway between it and the Pharaoh.

They finally understood. This was a true test of heart. All they learned in their quest for the Golden Crystal about the beliefs of the Old Earth Kingdom now came back to them. However, they also felt a calmness coming over them and they felt reassured about the task ahead of them. This now was not about raw power, but true understanding.

Neptune made the start by stating, "I have never made a secret of myself and my homosexuality. I know that everyone is entitled to their own secrets, and at times the Truth hurts, but more often lies only make things worse than they already are. I believe in Truth and search for it behind the lies."

While she'd said that she'd drifted away from the others, only stopping when she was done speaking. A blue glow surrounded her, while a big circle of blue light appeared around her.

Having an idea what this was about, Venus was next and explained, "Love is a misunderstood emotion. Many only think of it as the romantic kind. It's so much more. It's the very thing that lets us live together. Me as Sailor Venus know more than anyone else that without Love, we would be cold and ruthless to each other."

She, too, had drifted off to a position to the side of Neptune, and like her she was surrounded by a glow, only that hers was yellow, as was the circle that appeared around her, directly next to Naptune's blue circle.

Now it was clear that this was building up to something and Uranus felt it was her turn now. "Life threw all kind of crap at me. However, instead of breaking me, it made me stronger and I prevailed. Courage is needed to get us going through life, and without it I would have never become the woman I'm now." she declared.

The glow around Uranus, once she was in position, was red, as was the circle around her. All three circles were position in an upside-down triangle formation, touching each other at only three points.

"The three principles are shining brightly within the three of you."

Now being fully aware of the purpose of all of this, Mercury was the next to speak up. "While Truth is a very universal concept, it is Honesty - the trust that we do not lie to each other - that allows us to live together. I'm a very honest girl. I hated lying to my parents to hide being Sailor Mercury and was relieved when I could finally tell the truth."

Having drifted to the outermost point of the blue circle of Truth, away from the other circles, Mercury also started to glow blue and a bright blue diagonal line appeared in the darkness of space, running through her and touching the circle on its path.

Jupiter spoke up next. " Though Love allows us to live together peacefully, it's Compassion that makes us help those in need. Even long before I became Jupiter, I out of Compassion helped those that were bullied by others, even if it ruined my own reputation due to slander."

She had drifted to the opposite end on the triangle of circles, next to the yellow circle of Love. She began to glow yellow as well and a yellow diagonal line of light went through her, touching the circle and joining with the blue line above the blue and yellow circles.

"Looks like it's my turn now," Ceres said, taking a deep breath before saying, "Valor is the better part of Courage. While Courage helps us to go through life, it's Valor that allows us to face the enemy in battle. I'm the weakest of the Senshi, yet I've never shied away from facing the enemy. My relative weakness is no excuse to be a coward."

Having drifted to below the red circle of Courage, Ceres now started to glow red as well and a red line went through her, connecting at both ends with the other lines, thus forming a triangle around the circles of the principles..

However, the power already radiating from this partially finished symbol was enough to attract the attention of the Pharaoh. Turning around with a speed that belied his mass, he was astonished that the force building up there was starting to trap him in place due to the wall still stopping him from reaching the planet. His eye looked at whatever was going on with malevolence.

"Germatoid, Kaolinite, stop them! Kill them! They can not be allowed to finish whatever they have started.," he commanded, being highly annoyed at this turn of events.

"Yes... yes master!" Germatoid gasped, unprepared for this sudden turn of events. "Whatever they are doing, we won't allow them to finish... Kaolinite, come!"

"I'm on my way!" Both of them blasted through empty space to interfere with whatever was going on.

Endymion was just about to speak up when he saw they were getting company. "WATCH OUT!" he called, the glow surrounding them somehow enabling them to move in all three dimensions like it was nothing and thus dive out of the way.

"Don't think we'll let you do this," Germatoid growled, every trace of amusement gone from his voice. He sounded very dangerous now.

Kaolinite tried to blast an energy projectile through Mercury, but the blast bounced off the light surrounding her. "What the...?! Germatoid, they are protected by something!"

"Then kill those who aren't protected!" he called, before suddenly splitting into four identical Germatoids. "Hah, surprise!" he laughed humorlessly, before attacking four different people at the same time.

"Your ass is mine!" Ranma meanwhile hissed at Kaolinite; the attempt at Mercury's life having caused anger to boil up within her.

"Really, little girl? You are that interested in my ass?" Kaolinite mocked her. "Perhaps I should give you the first shot."

Now, unlike at the beginning, Ranma had perfectly come to terms with the curse by now. However, being called a 'little girl' in such a mocking way was still capable of ticking her off. Moving in space was a lot like mid-air combat - the specialty of her school of martial arts. One sharp flying kick and...

What the...? Urgh, I think I'm gonna be sick! she thought when seeing the results of the kick.

Where her boot-clad foot had connected, chunks of the white mass of Kaolinite's body got ripped out, floating around in clumps. Kaolinite herself however didn't seems bothered by it at all. Just a wave of her hand and the clumps came back and merged with her body and she again looked like this hadn't happened in the first place.

"Surprised? Well, now it looks like it's my turn," Kaolinite mocked her cruelly, before attacking.

What fallowed only took a minute, but felt like an eternity of pain to Ranma. It was as if Kaolinite's body was made of putty; being able to twist and deform in way that were just plain sick. Ranma stikes did no damage at all, just ripping out chunks that instantly rejoined with the main mass. Even striking several hundred time in seconds didn't change that. Kaolinite in return rained down blows and claw swipes from all possible angles.

The end result was Ranma being badly bruised and bloody, looking like she'd lost a fight against an angry tiger. While there was no up and down in space, the current position looked like Kaolinite was standing over Ranma, looking down at her. "Any final words before I end your pathetic life?"

How the hell can you defeat something that can't be hurt?! Ranma wondered, then again saw the black star covering Kaolinite's disturbingly featureless crotch. That reminded her of something Isamu had told her and since she was out of ideas anyway... Let's hope these boots great-grandpa gave me now pay off...

"There's one thing..."

"Yes...?" Kaolinite asked arrogantly.

"You talk too much!" Ranma jerked her right foot up while a nasty blade shot out of the sole of the boot. The kick hit dead-center, burying the blade right into the middle of the black star. The effect was immediate.

"AAAOOOOUUUUGHHHH!" Kaolinite screamed, not having expected Ranma to hit her small weak spot - an ironic weak spot at that - with such a sudden attack. Blue veins spread over her body, making her look like she could shatter into pieces.

"No more chances!" Ranma shouted, slamming her hands on each side of Kaolinite's head, and they started to glow pink. "Go to hell..."

"What...?! Ahhhhhh..." -Slpom- Kaolinite's howl was cut short when Ranma's energy attack manifested between her hands and inside Kaolinite's head, blowing it apart spectacularly. With Kaolinite dead, her body fell apart and Ranma looked in disgust at her hands, which were covered in something vaguely resembling marshmallow cream - though of course it was something much more nasty.

"KAOLINITE! NO! ... RARGGHHHH!" Germatoid screamed, having witnessed the entire thing. All four of him now went berserk, proving that she had meant something to him.

"We can't destroy him as long as he's split!" Mars called, speaking from experience after they had damaged each of the four Germatoids, only to witness them regenerate instantly. "He's cheating with magic; we have to force them back together!"

"I don't think he's inclined to cooperate!" Endymion reminded her, deflecting a blow with his sword. All of them, apart from Saturn who got shielded by Pluto, showed the abuse that Germatoid had dished out onto them.

"Can't you... freeze them in their tracks?" Sailor Moon asked Pluto while ramming the bottom of her scepter staff into one Germatoid's gut. It only stunned him for a few moments.

"That would kill me," was Pluto's short reply.

"No," Saturn said from behind Pluto, "He is my responsibility. Silence Wall!"

Dark energy blasted out of the Silence Glaive, but instead of forming a single wall, it formed a sphere surrounding all of them, including the four Germatoids. Then, the sphere shrunk and while the energy bubble just went through them and let them out, the four Germatoids stayed locked-in. Needless to say things soon got tight.

"No! Aaarrgh! NO!" Finally, the pressure became too big and they fused back into one Germatoid. "You can't do this to me!" he screamed when the field tightened around him, leaving only his head uncovered.

Saturn floated to him. "Thanks to you, my life was miserable. 'Just following orders' won't cut it. You enjoyed tormenting my father and me having a horrible life This here however is not revenge... No, it's justice for all you've done." Then she swung the Silence Glaive.

"NOOOO...grk..." The strike cleanly chopped off Germatoid's head and his body dissolved into white goo.

"You destroyed my herald." In the chaos they had forgotten Pharaoh 90 was present. "Obviously you need to be taught a lesson!" The cloud then slowly started to dissolve.

"Oh, crap! We need to hurry!" Moon gasped, not wanting to become a drooling idiot.

"Yes, me next!" Endymion gave Saturn a look that was clear. Even though she just did an act of justice, her main virtue was something else. "Saturn's show of Justice in honor, she does not represent it. In my past life I would have been forced to speak Justice. While I no longer wish for that authority, I still had to make a decision regarding the four Generals. I could have easily condemned them to death, but I knew what they did had not been of their own will and they were already punishing themselves more than I ever could. They were innocent and deserved a second chance."

Now positioned right above the circles for Truth and Love, he started to glow green and a green line appeared, touching the tops of both circles.

"Now me..." Saturn realized, knowing why Endymion had held her back. "Sailor Saturn is all about Sacrifice. We sacrifice our normal lives, being misunderstood due to our powers. Sacrificing ourselves is our last resort. I myself had sacrificed a lot for being Saturn and I'm still willing to lay down my life to save everyone... though I would be happy if I don't need to."

Having drifted to a place below Venus, Saturn started to glow orange and an diagonal orange line appeared, touching the circles of Love and Courage. However, unlike with the three virtues that formed a triangle, it crossed with the line of Justice, both lines going a bit further.

"Say goodbye to your little minds."

"No, we won't let you!"

The light from those already forming the symbol became almost blinding, wrapping itself also around those not yet into it. Whatever it was, it somehow filtered out what made the Pharaoh's appearance destroy the minds of those that looked at him. However, they still saw enough of him that it would probably haunt them in nightmares for years to come.

It was... impossible to describe what the Pharaoh looked like. It defied words. They only knew what they still saw was absolutely horrifying, even after what they had all already seen.

"Inconceivable! The magic of the planet of protecting you! You dared. For this transgression, the punishment is death." A massive energy storm picked up around the Pharaoh, hammering against the barrier that separated him from them. The energy wall quaked under the relentless assault.

"Quick! The protection won't last for long!"

"Urgh... yeah." Ranma felt like vomiting. She was very brave, but what she still saw of that monster was enough to horrify her to the core. "For a long time I thought Honor meant that I have to do what others expected me to do. But now I know better. Honor means your personal integrity and keeping your word... which stops when it would violate the rights of others."

Obivously, that was the right thing to say. Hovering below Neptune, Ranma started to glow in a purple light and a purple diagonal line appeared. Crossing the lines of Justice and Sacrifice, they formed a tighter upside-down triangle around the circles, thus why the lines crossed and went a bit further.

"By my very nature I'm a very spiritual person - it should speak for itself. However, Spirituality does not mean neglecting all other aspects in life. I want to lead a spiritual life, but also want to enjoy the same things from life any woman does. Spirituality in the ivory tower is self-centeredness, nothing else," Mars explained her motives.

Drifting behind the middle between the three circles, she started to glow white and a small white circle appeared in the middle between the three big circles of the principles, touching all three of them.

Now, only Pluto and Moon were left. Pluto knew this now was her call.

"I had been very arrogant. I thought I could alter the fates of people as I pleased in order to create the future I felt had to happen. For my arrogance I was punished horribly. Once my suffering finally ended, shame grew in me over my arrogance of the past. However, it also made me a better person and I learned true Humility from it. The Humility to help others without forcing my ideas onto them and realizing my own faults."

Having drifted to a spot below Ceres, Pluto was surrounded by... not exactly a black glow, it more looked like a shade of gray. The big, black cricle that grew from her and connected to the ends of all lines, completing the symbol, glowed with a gentle gray glow to set it off against the darkness of outer space.

"Tapping into the planet's magic is not enough to protect you!" The raging storm became even worse, causing the barrier separating them to flicker constantly. "Now prepare for your end!"

"Oh no, we won't!" Sailor Moon felt surprisingly calm, despite the terror she was seeing. "We finally have enough of you."

She slowly drifted in front of the glowing symbol that was held in place by her friends. All of them gave her encouraging looks, though the stress of keeping what they had created together was clearly visible. The symbol was facing the Pharaoh head-on, and thus so did she, unable to look away from the unspeakable sight which without the protection would have destroyed her mind. She looked directly into the eye of the massive creature.

The Pharaoh clearly noticed. "What do you want to do about it?! Logic states you will lose and I will get what I want."

"You are wrong. There is so much more to everything than just cold calculation and egoism. Things you will never be able to understand in your greed and malevolence." She held the Moon Scepter close to her chest and the Silver Crystal started to glow brilliantly. Her tiara vanished, being replaced by the golden symbol of the Moon. Her uniform vanished as well, however, with nothing replacing it.

I'm looking my most vulnerable. Thank all goodness I'm facing away from them. Usagi, keep your legs together and pretend your friends don't have a premium view of your naked ass... she tried to shove the implications aside to concentrate on the task ahead.

"This is irrelevant. I want to sustain and improve myself. Anything else is not of concern." Soon the shield would give...

"You really wouldn't understand... Bonds, friendship, love... these are things completely alien to you, and you have no idea of the strength behind it." Hearing the yells of approval from behind, she could feel the light from her friends growing even more intense and the gift their bond with her did enable was flowing freely now.

"They are giving me the strength. They believe in me. Infinity is an ideal that no one can reach - trying to be perfect only leads to coldness. I've seen it myself. I'm not perfect, but I don't need to be. I try my best and my friends help me with what I can't do. They are lending me all of their strengths combined to give me strength and the power to endure. They allow me to access Infinity and channel it through the Silver Crystal."

Above the crescent moon on her forehead, a second symbol appeared - the symbol of Infinity.

"No! What is this?! Ah!... Aaaahhh!" The blinding light emitted from the Silver Crystal felt like fire on his skin. "This power; I can't protect myself against it!"

Sailor Moon finally said something final, which honestly was not very well-cultured, but she now felt it was time to make a point and she had enough as well. "To make it short: It is time for you to leave, asshole!"

-Wooooooooooshhhhh- "NOOOOOOOOOOO!"

The purest white light erupted from the Silver Crystal, engulfing the massive form of Pharaoh 90. It looked like a huge shadow in the middle of the whiteness, but none of them could look away. The light ripped the massive body into countless pieces, which then were vaporized to harmless space dust.

In this spectacular display, Pharaoh 90 found his final end.

When the light faded, all of them found themselves back on the surface of the Moon, the Pharaoh gone... and Sailor Moon thankfully being back in her uniform. However, right away the horror they had seen caught up with them and all of them plastered the surface of the Moon with their vomit. Even Pluto, who had seen lots of horrible things in her long life, got sick at the memory of the horrible sight of the Pharaoh even when being filtered of the worst that could have driven them insane.

It took them a few minutes to get themselves back under control.

"I'll have nightmares about that sight..." Mercury shuddered, hugging Ranma. Both of them felt shaken at what they had seen and knew they could never speak of it... ever. It was impossible to put it into words, after all.

None of them were hurt physically, but the experience had been horrible.

"I hope we don't have to do this in particular again anytime soon," Jupiter hoped, feeling like she's been put through an emotional wringer.

"You should not worry, since doing that in particular anytime soon would indeed kill you."

Holding up his sword, Endymion saw that the Golden Crystal was still glowing. "I thought you would have stopped talking to us once this was done?" he asked the voice.

"We will soon fade back into the magic that birthed us, but some tasks first have to be done. First our concern is with the one called Ranma."

"What about me?" Ranma asked, wondering what this could be about.

"Our magic trapped inside Jusenkyo was twisted into a caricature until its release back into raw form; cursing people for life is a fate no one deserves. Sadly, while it will be impossible to help everyone cursed by it, you have worked very hard and now should be rewarded."

"You mean you can remove it?" Surprisingly, Ranma didn't sound enthusiastic about losing the curse, despite what others might have thought her reaction would be.

"No. The magic has embedded itself so deep within your very self, that it will only let go on your dying moment." The voice let this sink in for a moment. "However, you actually don't want to get rid of it anymore, do you? Not after accepting it as part of yourself."

It was like scenes appeared before her mind's eye. Slowly coming to terms with a girl's body, Ami kissing her while she was a girl... and after some other things she saw the events of some nights ago, with Ami gently pumping a strap-on dildo into her, Ranma lying beneath her, legs spread wide while holding onto her and moaning how good this felt. Shaking her head, she looked to Mercury and realized that she must have seen the same thing through their bond, blushing quite a bit.

The voice clearly felt the answer. "No, your reward will be something else."

At first nothing happened, then Ranma felt very strange. It took a few moments before he realized he'd shifted back to male. "What the...? There was no water, I..." It felt odd again. Now she was a girl again. After a few seconds, it was back to male. "What was that?" he asked, once there was not another change.

"Just think of wanting to become the opposite gender."

Ranma tried that, and suddenly he felt himself shifting. It felt downright weird, since the change was no longer instantaneous, but took a second or two. This feels like my dick and balls are pulled inside, before it forms a pussy, while my chest feels like its inflating, Ranma thought in bizarre fascination, before she tried to reverse the change, which happened without issue apart from a now different weird feeling.

"I... thank you. I no longer minded the whole change thing. Perhaps I even started to enjoy a part of it. But these changes out of my control..." He found it difficult to put it into words.

"Oh, Ranma!" Mercury hugged him. Though, due to both of them having vomited mere minutes ago, there was no kiss involved.

"You worked very hard for this reward." The voice then turned serious. "You all have to return to Earth. The Dark Kingdom is attempting to take advantage of Earth's magic while it is still settling into a new order, now that the Second Age of Magic has begun. Remember the lesson well, that it is the people themselves that give Earth its magic, if you plan to succeed. Goodbye, warriors..."

The glow around the Golden Crystal vanished, the voice gone.

They all looked up the black sky to Earth. Knowing that the final confrontation was coming up, they wordlessly formed the teleport circle to return home with their work on the Moon being done.

Another challenge - one perhaps even harder - was waiting for them.

to be continued...

Next Episode:

"Battle for the World, Part IV - Final Confrontation"


Notes:

Here the notes.

Unlike what you might think, the confrontation with the Pharaoh was not the problem for me - that almost wrote itself. No, the real problem for me was the confrontation in Nerima. That had been the difficult one.

As you can see, due to the virtues being featured, this chapter does have a strong Ultima-influence. I tried as best as possible to describe the Codex symbol, but if the description doesn't work, just search for the Ultima codex symbol to see what I mean. I actually planned this well in advance and assigned the proper virtues and principles to the protagonists years ago already.

Now, you probably noticed that I didn't describe what the Pharaoh looks like. That was intentional. After all, his form DOES defy any words that could describe him.

Also, I also had planned for Ranma to gain control over his curse right from the start. After all, this can be seen as the reward for all the hardships he'd went through and still didn't waver. This solution only works because - to no small part due to Ami - he's aceepted his female self as part of his life and now actually would miss it.

The next chapter holds the big confrontation. It'll go different from what you'll expect.