A Bishoujo Senshi Sailor Moon story
Disclaimer: Bishoujo Senshi Sailor Moon belongs to Takeuchi Naoko, Koudansha, TV Asahi, and Toei Douga, and DIC.
Mizuno Ami slowly entered the realms of consciousness as she woke up in her comfortable bed in the apartment she shared with her mother. She stretched languidly across the surface of her bed and gazed out of her window. The sun was shining brightly over Juuban, and it looked like the beginnings of a glorious day.
That's odd, she mused. I've woken up before my alarm, but normally when I wake up with my alarm the sun is only half above the Tokyo skyline. Rolling over, she peered at her digital alarm clock, which blinked back 00:00 at her. "There must have been a power outage during the night," she sighed as she reached the most obvious explanation. Reaching for her watch sitting next to the clock on her nightstand, she checked the time. Ten past eight.
Ami's eyes bugged out. She only had twenty minutes to get to school! "I am SO late!" she wailed, before realising what she had said. Looking nervously around her room she let out a sigh of relief. Thank god no one heard me say THAT.
It was just before half past eight when a slightly frazzled Ami dashed into Miss Haruna's homeroom class. Made it, she thought triumphantly as she made her way to her seat. Her elation was short lived when she noticed the girl in the seat next to hers. Usagi beat me?!
"Ohayo, Ami-chan!" The girl in question waved cheerfully at Ami.
Ami mumbled a reply and inclined her head in acknowledgment as she arrived at her own desk.
"Hey, Ami." Makoto got her attention. "What did you think of today's homework? I'd ask Usagi, but she didn't do it."
Usagi at least had the good grace to look half-guilty at that statement.
"Homework?" Ami repeated incredulously. "What homework?"
Makoto made a face. "We were supposed to do the last three exercises on page forty-two." She held up her slightly battered-looking English textbook.
Usagi, meanwhile, was doing her utmost to keep from bursting into song. Ami forgot as well! Haruna-sensei can't punish me without punishing Ami, and there's no way she'd punish her! I'm gonna get away with it!
Ami however was nonplussed. "You had me worried for a second. I did those exercises last week, when I was bored." She took out her workbook and opened it to show Makoto.
Usagi sighed wistfully. "I wish I had a magic book that had all the homework already done when I forgot."
Ami sweatdropped. "Um… it's not magic, Usagi."
Usagi idly waved away her protests. "I know, I know. But can't you just allow a girl her delusions?"
Time seemed to stand still for Ami. With a gnawing feeling of dread growing in the pit of her stomach, she slowly turned to completely face the… thing… in her best friend's seat. "What did you say?" her voice came out as a shocked whisper.
Usagi blinked at Ami's odd behaviour. "I asked if you could allow me my delusions," she answered hesitantly.
Suddenly Ami lunged at her. "What have you done with Usagi, you monster?!" she shrieked as she began shaking the fake.
"A-a-Ami-ch-chan!" Usagi managed to get out before the violent shaking made her bite her tongue by accident.
"Don't you 'Ami-chan' me, you imposter!" Ami drew back a hand to strike at the fake before a disturbing thought entered her head. If this new enemy has replaced Usagi, that means they must know our real identities… Easing off her attack on Usagi, Ami turned to see Makoto, who was staring at her in complete shock. Shock at being found out, no doubt! Ami thought triumphantly, oblivious to the fact that everyone in the room was giving her the same look.
Then another thought struck Ami. I can't deal with this unless I transform… but even if the enemy knows my identity, I can't let everyone else know. She let go of Usagi and bolted for the door, giving a silent prayer that the real Usagi and Makoto were safe.
"What the hell was that all about?!" Makoto exclaimed as she watched Ami depart.
"I don't know, but I'd better follow her!" Usagi said as she ran after Ami. Upon reaching the door she realized that — in theory at least — this was still a classroom. "Gomennasai, Haruna-sensei." Usagi bowed to the teacher. "I'll just take Ami to the nurse's office." Then she swiftly left the classroom before Miss Haruna was able to reply.
Haruna-sensei shakily reached into her desk and withdrew a bottle of Midol.
As Ami raced through the school, she was struck by an important realisation. People were stupid. People were incapable of recognising her when she put on a tiara and a short skirt. But even so, if they saw Ami attack Usagi and then depart, just before Sailor Mercury appeared and attacked Usagi, a few eyebrows might be raised.
Fumbling for her communicator, she took it out and pressed the Mars symbol. Besides, she rationalized, Rei might be able to detect more fakes with her powers… so long as they haven't gotten to her already.
Meanwhile, halfway across Juuban…
I am so gonna ace this test! Rei thought gleefully as she wrote down another answer she was certain was correct. Even though her school covered all grades from junior high to senior high, she was hoping to transfer, so she was taking the entrance exam for Juuban High School.
Usagi and the guys will be so happy when they find out I can go to school with them! She allowed herself a moment to think about how much fun it would be next year, with all the Senshi apart from Hotaru and Setsuna at the same school together.
She'd been studying solidly for a week, and had asked Haruka what questions to prepare for, since Haruka and Michiru had taken the same test when they transferred from Mugen Gakuen. So far she was sailing through.
Then her communicator beeped.
Not now, not now, not now! she thought fervently. Of all the bad timing…
A hand clamped on her shoulder. "Take it out, Hino," the teacher administering the exam told her.
Rei wanted to scream, to cry out against cruel fate, to call for special dispensation for superheroes. But instead she silently reached into her bag and handed him the communicator.
"A pager, eh?" the teacher remarked, obviously not identifying it as a Sailor Senshi communicator. After all, why would he? "Having someone send you the answers in the middle of the test?" he tutted. "You know the rules. I'm disqualifying you from this exam."
Rei slumped down and resigned herself to another three years of going to a different school than all her friends.
"Naniyo?" Ami exclaimed in surprise when she failed to get through. "Rei too?"
With only one option left, she reached for the Venus symbol. It's a pity I can't reach the Outer Senshi on this, she mused.
"Ami! I found you!" Usagi called out as she rounded the corner.
"Gah!" Ami exclaimed with less than her usual eloquence, all thoughts of contacting Minako gone as panic seized her. "You won't get me, you fake!" she yelled shrilly as she ran off down the corridor.
Usagi sweatdropped. "I've been running to school every day for the past four years, and she thinks she can outpace me?" With a sigh, Usagi loped off after her confused friend.
Swiftly reaching Ami, Usagi grabbed her arm to bring her to a halt. Ami reacted immediately, and slapped Usagi across the face.
An angry red mark blazed on Usagi's cheek. Tears were beginning to form in her eyes as she gingerly brought a hand up to her face. "Ami-chan…" was all she could say through her shock.
Ami was immediately wracked with guilt. She looks so much like Usagi… She felt her heart ache at the sight. Did I just… hit Usagi? she wondered, before strengthening her resolve. No, it's not Usagi. It's a monster that kidnapped Usagi!
Seeing the turmoil in her friend's expression, Usagi gently reached over to touch Ami's arm. Ami leapt back as if she had been burned. "You're not the real Usagi!" she insisted. "You're an imposter!"
"Why do you think that?" asked Usagi, feeling hurt at her friends rejection.
"You said 'delusions'."
Ami paused. It did sound kind of silly when she said it out loud. "The real Usagi wouldn't know that word," she finished lamely, knowing how stupid she sounded.
Usagi, meanwhile, was curled up in mirth. "You… you thought I was an imposter because I said big word?" she got out in between giggles. "That's an interesting hypothesis!" She wiped a tear of laughter from her eye.
Ami's eyes narrowed. "Hypothesis?" she repeated. "No way!" In a flash she was holding her henshin wand "Mercury Crystal Power… Make UP!!!" She felt the power of Mercury flow through her as she transformed into Super Sailor Mercury.
Usagi was no longer laughing. She was quite worried.
"Mercury… Aqua…" An icy harp appeared in Sailor Mercury's hands.
Usagi was now terrified.
"Rhapsody!" Bolts of freezing energy lanced out and struck Usagi.
The attack would have killed a normal human. Luckily, Usagi — even without transforming into Sailor Moon — was quite a bit more than normal, so she escaped serious injury. Unfortunately, this also proved to Ami that she was dealing with something abnormal.
Usagi groggily picked herself up. She felt stiff all over from the cold, and every movement hurt. I can't hurt Ami. She reached for her compact. But if I don't transform I could die. She silently swore to herself that she would die before attacking her friend.
Sailor Mercury was confused. Surely the fake couldn't transform? Besides, Usagi needs the Ginzuishou to do that.
"Make UP!!!" She finished. Looking down she noticed she was still in her school uniform. "Up?" she tried again hopefully. Still nothing.
"That proves it, you imposter!" Mercury yelled "What did you do with Usagi?!" She pointed an accusing finger at Usagi.
Usagi sweatdropped. "Oh, that's right!" she slapped her forehead "I can't use that transformation without Chibi-Usa!"
Sailor Mercury readied herself for another attack.
How can I convince her I'm really me? Usagi wondered desperately. She doubted she could take another attack. Suddenly she hit on an idea. "Ami, wait! Scan me with your computer; it should tell you if I'm really me!"
Sailor Mercury facefaulted. "Why didn't I think of that?" she grumbled as she tapped her earring and the familiar visor swung down over her eyes. She scanned Usagi and got a normal reading. There was quite a bit of hidden power, and the Ginzuishou screwed up a few readings, but that was all normal for Usagi.
She detransformed. "Er… sorry…" Ami said, blushing furiously.
"Jeez, Ami, you're weird." Usagi slyly sidled up to her "Did you get a love letter today or something?"
This only caused Ami to turn an even deeper shade of crimson. "Isn't it weird no one came out to investigate all the noise I was making?" she said, trying to change the subject.
Usagi shrugged "Classes in this part of school must be interesting. By the way, thanks for getting me out of our class!" She cheerfully slung an arm round Ami's shoulder.
"How was school, dear?" Tsukino Ikkuko asked as Usagi came home that evening. She was surprised when her daughter simply strode right past her without a word, an expression of grim determination on her face.
Usagi marched up the stairs and into the bathroom. Practically ripping the "word of the day" toilet paper off the holder, she stuffed it into the bin.
"I think you've done enough damage for one day," she said dramatically as she dusted her hands together.
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