So, Serena’s folks like Darien (AN: good idea?). The legend came full circle with a spirit being set free. And now, Serena’s family knows the truth about the Scouts and Generals. Can I make this any more different? Well, read on and find out - since this chapter was never an episode.

Sailor Moon is copyright (c) 1992 Naoko Takeuchi/Kodansha, TOEI Animation. English Language Adaptation (c) 1995 DiC Entertainment

... And Death Shall Have No Dominion
by Bonnie S

Chapter Twenty-Two - Preparing for the Good Times

* * * * * * * *

The group had been waiting for that Saturday to arrive for so long. Serena was not only out of her depression, but the group also had Darien and Jedite back as well!

The group gathered at the manor early that morning, greeted by a huge breakfast! It seemed that Molly, Jessica, and Zoicite got in the mood to cook while waiting for the group - especially when Jessica brought up the idea of making sure the group was well fed before putting them to work (with a laugh in her throat).

Lita wasn’t used to someone else cooking for her. But, she really enjoyed Zoicite’s chocolate chip pancakes.

So did Sammy and Serena. The latter settled on the couch next to her beau with their breakfasts. Since his return the pair were rarely away from one another. The group was all betting on when the royal couple would be announcing their engagement - including Serena’s parents.

Another bet was on how long Neflyte and Molly would be able to hold off getting married. Jessica refused to join in on it, but had a strange smile on her face when the talk tried to get a hint from her as to possible when’s.

Then there was wonder of how long Malachite and Zoicite would be merely lovers. Molly and Serena both agreed that more than likely the other couple would wait off until they got hitched first. But that was their secret - well theirs and Jessica’s that is.

The moment Jedite entered the room he closed his eyes and felt the bands of magic guarding that room. “There are a few small holes in you three’s spells.”

“What are you talking about, Jedite?” Zoicite asked. She thought of every possible opening an enemy could use.

He grinned, his eye still shut. “Your powers are stretched very thin in places.”

Then the trio felt the powerful spells their friend put in place to ease the strained areas and balance the overall guard magic. It made them all smile and showed without a doubt that they were once again all close friends. After a moment Jedite opened his eyes and smiled back at Neflyte and Molly. “That should help, I suspect. Now, where shall we start?”

Molly hugged her once lost cousin in thanks.

The rest of the morning the group spent painting the walls. To make it easier later on, they agreed to wait until all of the painting was done before attaching the wood trim and lower paneling.

Then they had lunch and planned out the rest of the class year. The girls only had about one week’s worth of class material to go, and the current graduating class still had a few weeks to go.

They decided to graduate early, so that they would have more time for defending Earth from Beryl. For a time Darien and Ken were out on the balcony. Every time Serena started to go out to check on the pair Irene would pull her away. What were they talking about?

* * * * * * * *

“Mr. Tsukino? Can I talk with you for a few minutes?” He was scared to death. It had not been long since Serena had formally introduced him to her father, but Darien had come so close to losing her too many times and the trip down memory lane only reinforced his love for her.

Ken knew exactly what the young man wanted to talk about from the look on Darien’s face. It was the same nervous expression he himself wore when speaking with Irene’s father so long before. “Sure, Darien, come on over here and take a seat. What’s on your mind?”

Darien wondered if the truth was obvious to Serena’s father. Taking a deep breath, he decided to keep on. “I have a question I want to ask Serena, but I would like to know how you would feel about it first.” Once Ken nodded for him to continue, Darien sighed with conviction. “I love your daughter with all of my heart. At first, when she knocked me in the head with one of her bad tests, I couldn’t understand why she was so different from any other girl I had ever met in my life.

“She is the first person I have ever truly felt any love for. I was orphaned in a car wreck and it was in defending her all of this time that I learned to care for those around me. Serena is a unique woman, and is more now than the Princess she might have become a thousand years ago.

“Sir, I am asking for your blessing to ask Serena to marry me.” Finally Darien took a deep breath. Now all of his plans lay in Ken’s hands.

Ken sat there quietly for a few moments. This was a day he had hoped to avoid a couple more years at the least. This young man was asking to take his baby girl to his side for life … maybe longer, knowing the two of them. After all, they were reunited now after a thousand year separation.

He knew that the pair was meant for an important destiny, and he would not be able to hold them apart forever. Ken closed his eyes and sighed heavily. “One day Darien, you will understand how I feel right now. I had hoped to have at the least another year of being just her father. At least I’ll be gaining another son. Yes, Darien, you have my blessings. However, you still have to talk to her mother before you say a word to Serena. If Irene says no, then I will stand by her choice.”

Darien took his first easy breath of that day. He was a third of the way to making Serena his fiancée. With a smile on his face, he shook Ken’s hand. “Thank you sir. I’ll do everything I can to protect and make Serena happy the rest of my life.”

“I know you will, Darien. You already do as it is. But, as I said before, Irene has a say in this as well.” Ken gratefully shook his future son-in-law’s hand. He knew that his wife would not deny Darien, seeing as she was already looking through wedding magazines.

A few minutes later found Darien in the kitchen with Irene, as scared as he had been outside with Ken. “Mrs. Tsukino, I need to talk with you about something.”

“Oh, Darien? Sit down and tell me.” Irene already knew that the young man had asked Ken for permission to marry Serena. In fact Ken was keeping Serena busy while Darien and Irene had their talk.

She wasn’t against the idea, but she also wanted to know what Darien had in his heart. She wanted to know what this young man truly felt for her daughter.

“I’m very much in love with Serena. I know that there are years between us, but Serena isn’t an average girl. She’s been handed a very difficult destiny and is handling it much better than anyone would expect, and she has matured since remembering the past we shared back during the days of the Moon Kingdom. I would like your permission to ask her to marry me.” Darien decided that if that weren’t enough to explain his heart then he’d get nowhere.

Irene took a sip of her tea in order to hide her smile. “And is this what you were talking with Ken about outside?”

“Yes, madam.”

Holding that smile back was becoming all the harder. Irene and Ken had talked about this the day after they discovered their daughter’s secret life. If Darien was to come to one, they agreed the other two must agree to his proposal or else it would be ‘no’.

“And what did he say?”

Darien swallowed. Of the two he thought for certain that he’d have Serena’s mother’s blessings. “That he would agree if you would. That I need both of your blessings before I can ask Serena if she would marry me.”

“You do realize that she may be acting mature for everything the two of you have lived through, but she is still a girl inside. A girl who adores you with all of her heart. If you are going to start this, then please tell me you will finish it. I don’t want to see my little girl sobbing like she did when Beryl had you brainwashed.” Irene knew that her Serena was only fourteen, but how many mothers could honestly say that their daughter had love a man since before they were born?

Darien still hated himself for those weeks of serving their worse enemy, how many times she tried to get him into her bed. Yet the dream that sent him to Serena before was what kept him out of Beryl’s bed. “Serena is the only one I will ever love with my heart and of my own free will.”

“Thankfully for you, I have seen that. You protected her before the two of you knew who one another were, you protected her when you were supposed to be an enemy, and you went to the one parent you didn’t know if you could gain blessing for this first. Yes, you have my blessings as well. Now go ask Serena, or would that be too much to ask of my future son-in-law?” Irene chuckled.

Darien felt his heart race with joy. He finally had a family after years of being on his own. “No problem, Mrs. Tsukino.”

Irene shook her head. “Darien, I know what Serena will say. And I think it is okay for you to call me mom now.”

“Sure, mom. Thank you.”

“You're welcome, now go make my baby’s dreams come true.”

* * * * * * * *

Darien and Irene went out on the balcony to find Ken and Serena chuckling. Irene smiled and nodded to her husband - telling him that they would soon have another son to call their own. “Sweetheart, how about we let the kids talk. I need some help inside.”

“Sure, dear. You two behave yourselves.” Ken winked at his little girl as she giggled.

Once the couple went inside, Darien felt his heart clench in panic. What if Serena’s heart had changed? “What were you two laughing about?”

“Father told me that this year he’s adding on a thousand candles on my birthday cake! Ugh!” Serena rolled her eyes.

Darien smiled as she curled into his arms. He didn’t know how to ask her. He wanted it to be like in his dreams, but he didn’t know how to say it.

“You know what? I dreamed about a moment like this since I found out about our past. Do you remember the first time we met?” Serena sighed.

Darien chuckled at that memory. “When you bopped me in the head with a ‘30’ paper?”

“Yeah. I may have made fun of you, but when I turned around to glance at you - I decided that you were kind of cute.” Serena smiled as she looked up into the blue eyes she adored. She couldn’t remember why she ever hated him - Darien was beyond cute, and loved her.

Darien remembered that day well. “And I knew that there was something about you. I just never dare dreamed all of this. I love you, my sweet.”

“Oh, and I love you Darien!” Serena’s eyes sparkled as she smiled up at him.

“Serena, I have something I need to ask you, and I want you to wait until I’m done before you say anything … okay?” Darien took a breath to steady himself.

She nodded and he continued. “I love you with all of my heart. When I was brainwashed, you never lost faith that I would return to you. You risked yourself by revealing yourself to me and saving my life in that elevator before we remembered our pasts. And you saved me a few times before that. I dreamed about you, even when Beryl had a hold over me. You are my sweet, my Moon Princess, and my only love. Serena, I was lucky to get you back not only once … but twice.”

Darien pulled a small black velvet box, transformed into his Prince form, and dropped to one knee before his love. To his joy, she turned into that beautiful Princess he had loved for two lifetimes. “Serena, Sailor Moon, Moon Princess, my dearest love … will you marry me?”

Tears were trickling down her blushing cheeks and over her lovely smile. Neither knew that they had all of their friends and family as an audience. Serena took a breath so she wouldn’t cry out like a child. “Oh Darien, Tuxedo Mask, Prince Darien, my protector, and my only one … of course I’ll marry you.”

Darien slid the ring onto her finger, stood up, and twirled her around in his happiness. Darien hated his lonely life before the day he got knocked in the head with a wadded-up failed algebra test. Ever since she entered his life, he hadn’t had a single lonely day. Serena had become his reason to get up every morning and his last thought every night. She was in his dreams, and all of his sweetest hopes had her in them. Now he would soon be her husband and they would make a life for themselves without fear of being alone.

The group walked out and applauded the happy, and blushing, couple.

* * * * * * * *

By the time they got the appliqués, paneling, banner, and molding up it was time for dinner. Before they had dessert, the furniture was set up and the curtains were hung. Pillows were put in place, books and toys were put in their places, and Molly was seated in the rocking chair taking in the group’s work.

Neflyte smiled at her, knowing that very shortly she would be holding a beautiful baby girl in her arms in that chair. “Well, now there is only one last thing to do.”

Molly giggled as she shut the door. No one had to be told what was going on. Each person coated his or her right hand in paint.

Neflyte and Molly placed their prints in the center of the door. The Generals and Jessica surrounded those with own. And those were surrounded by the Scouts’ prints. Then came Serena’s family’s. After that Luna and Artemis’ were pressed on one side, while Serena and Darien’s put theirs opposite of theirs. Then they all printed their names under their print. This was their promise to protect all the children of their combined family.

* * * * * * * *

Well, Desiree’s room is ready!
Now I think they need to remember the past a little better - right?
Next is the return of their pasts!
How do ya’ll like this so far?

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return to Index / go to Chapter 23

The Nephrite and Naru Treasury