riynashay: (Default)
[personal profile] riynashay posting in [community profile] starshinepc

"Care to explain what this is?"

Chie Tachibana stopped as she came to the unfamiliar doorstep, blinking faintly in recognition. The voice was none other then Mei Hidama, her classmate, but Mei's voice sounded--angry. Against her better judgement, Chie remained still, curiosity beating her urge to complete her delivery.

"C'mon, it--no way..." That was Ushio Hoshizora. She didn't sound upset like Mei did--rather awed. Chie leaned ever so closer, her inky black straight cut hair beginning to frame her face.

"You were going to tell us about this, right?!" Mei again, voice rising in anger.

"A-ah, w-well..."

Chie didn't recognize the third voice. They sounded younger though, and male. Maybe it was Mei's younger brother? The girl frowned upon pondering this, however--Kouta hadn't sounded anything like that. Before she could think about this more, the girl gasped lightly, pale cheeks flushing in embarrassment. Oh, oh it really wasn't nice to eavesdrop on private matters. Clearing her throat and shaking away her embarrassment, the girl rang the doorbell. Within moments, it swung open, revealing Ushio instead of Mei. Ushio offered Chie an apologetic smile--and Chie found herself flushing in embarrassment again, bowing in greeting to hide her reddened face. It took several seconds before the girl found her voice. "Your order from Tachibana Teahouse has arrived." she gestured to the box beside her, containing a pot of sweet peach tea, several chocolate filled croissants, cookies and a whole cheesecake. Chie gave the total and waited as Ushio--and Mei, who had appeared at the door as well, though her mind appeared to be elsewhere--dug through her wallet to pay for the order. The two girls each paid half and as Chie counted the money, the question leapt from her mouth before she could stop it: "So are you two the only ones here?"

Mei didn't answer, but Ushio did, the girl laughing in response. "We've got some of Miyo's friends here." she said, adding a rather generous tip in response. Chie's brown eyes widened in bewilderment--but her parents had raised her to never turn down extra money--and then she bowed to them again.

"Enjoy and please order from Tachibana Teahouse again!"

The two girls gave her goodbyes and Ushio shut the door as Mei brought the box in. The tanned girl waited for Chie to vanish and be out of earshot--and finally, the girl nodded, signalling that the coast was clear. As she turned to face Usami, however, her expression had hardened a little, lips pursed in a tight line. Mei looked even sterner, her normally friendly gray eyes taking on a darker color, like that of blades. "Usami," Mei spoke slowly, "you're going to tell us what this is." she dug into her pocket and brought out a small bottle.

It looked like an older version of the Star Capsule both Ushio and Mei had. But while theirs looked like pill bottles, this older one was shaped vaguely like a 5-pointed star. There was no oversized ribbon around the neck of the bottle--rather, it was a small, sheer ribbon in a pale orange color. Instead of several large clusters of light, there were thousands of tiny, glittering specks of orange light, and instead of a tan cork, there was a small, rounded top colored a vivid orange that kept the glimmering specks of light from flying out. But most striking was the small, 8-pointed silver star shaped pendant at the center of the ribbon, etched with the symbol for Leo.

"U-um..." Usami mumbled, trembling and gray eyes darting all around, as if he was trying to deduce an exit strategy. In response, Mei and Ushio flanked both his sides--and realizing he was trapped, the little bear let out a tiny whimper of misery. "...o-okay." he said, shoulders slumping. "Sit down--i-it's not an easy story to tell."

The two girls traded a glance before both sat down. With Hirui working, Miyo down at Arata's house, and Kouta on the other side of Lucente at the arcade, the three would be alone for several hours yet.

Usami took a deep, shaky breath. "Here we go..."

---

OP: "Purikyua ✰ Wish!" - StarSHINE
EPISODE 4 - "Mama was a Pretty Cure?! Usami's sorrowful story"

---

Hirui Kouen sighed in defeat as she failed at the crane game for what felt like the millionth time. The 9 year old redhead peeked around for anyone who would reprimand her, before pressing her face longingly to the glass. Hnnn, there was the cutest teddy bear in the pile of stuffed animals, all blue with stars in its ears and at the corners of its eyes and Hirui wasn't quite sure why, but she just had to have it! "I'm gonna rescue youuuu~" she told the teddy bear, frantically digging for more coins to use. She was going to waste her entire allowance at this rate, but it would totally be worth it! In her rush, she hadn't seen how the bear's ears twitched, though when she finally had more money in hand, she blinked upon looking at the machine again.

Was the bear...staring at her?

...and smiling too?

Uncertainly, Hirui tapped the glass. "Can you hear me?" she asked--and shrank back as the bear nodded. A million questions ran through her mind all at once, the first being how on earth had a sentient bear gotten into a crane game? And for a second, the girl found herself irritated--she'd wasted so much money trying to win the bear and it could have freed itself at any time! The girl puffed her cheeks out, more annoyed at this by the second. "You coulda at least helped me win you too..." she muttered.

"Ah, I apologize." came a voice from behind Hirui, startling the redhead. "Usami's preferred method of finding others is...a little odd." Hirui turned--and stared at the speaker, an elegant woman in her late 30s with dark skin and dark blue hair tied off into a braid, reminding Hirui of a starless night. The woman's eyes were a surprising shade of icy blue however, automatically drawing Hirui's gaze to them. The woman was dressed plainly, her blouse and slacks nothing out of the ordinary, though she was taller than the average woman around here. Despite the height difference, however, the woman smiled kindly--and then bowed in utmost respect for the little girl, making Hirui turn as red as her hair. "Thank you, however, for finding my son."

Another girl stepped out from behind the dark-skinned woman, sporting a friendly smile and patting the woman's back enthusiastically. "Bah, Ursa, don't be so formal! You're gonna scare the kid half to death." she chided, laughing at the startled expression that came to Ursa's face. When the new girl turned to face Hirui, the redhead found herself smiling despite herself. This girl wasn't nearly as tall as Ursa was or as dark-skinned--rather, she sported a slight tan as if she spent a lot of time outdoors. Black hair pinned back into a ponytail, the girl's eyes were a dark red--fringing on brown--and freckles dusted her nose and cheeks, somehow managing to make her look even friendlier. She had to have been at least 17 and was dressed in the sailor uniform of the nearby high school--and the girl grinned, sticking her hand out for a friendly handshake. "Nice t'meetcha! I'm Nami, Mizuno Nami! And you?"

Hirui was startled again, not sure what to think about Nami's forwardness, before she hesitantly took the girl's hand, offering a weak handshake. "...H-Hirui." she stammered. "Kouen Hirui." she let go, bowing to the two of them. "I-it's nice to meet you, Ursa-san, Mizuno-san."

Ursa opened her mouth to return the greeting, but Nami cut her off, waving her hands frantically. "Nooooo, none of that! 'Mizuno-san' makes me sound old. You're calling me Nami, okay?" Another infectious grin, one Hirui couldn't fight against even if she wanted to. When the redhead nodded, Nami let out a whoop of victory. "Score!" she then offered the crane machine a side-long glance, knocking on the glass. "Oiii, Usami, you can come out nowww~"

Usami responded by diving into the pile of dolls. They rustled every which way and there was a small thunk as something landed in the prize compartment. With a squeak, the door swung open, revealing that same bear Hirui had thought was alive. The little bear beamed, abruptly launching himself at Ursa. "Mamaaaa~!" he said happily as the woman caught him, snuggling in her arms and nuzzling against her chest, making tiny noises of contentment.

Hirui stared. "U-um..."

Ursa smiled in apology. "This isn't my normal form. I'm in disguise." she chuckled, "Usami here hasn't learned how to switch forms--although I don't think he wants to." she poked his cheek affectionately. "There's something we need to discuss, Kouen-sa--" the woman was cut off once more by Nami, Ursa's lips pursing. Before she could speak, however, she noticed something different about Nami's expression.

Seconds later, there was a burst of red light that impacted against the crane machine the small group was standing at. Hirui shrieked and immediately Ursa was shielding her, both with her body and a bright dome of light overhead, keeping the three of them safe. Nami, however, was just behind the dome of light, mumbling and grumbling under her breath. "Tchhh, why nowww?" she said with a pout, watching with an annoyed expression as the crane machine grew larger and taller, the stuffed toys within strangely vanishing into nothingness. The top to the crane machine had vanished while the crane itself had grown extremely large, sharp and pointy. Large red eyes appeared on the monster, followed by an evil grin, as it spread its arms triumphantly, the crane swinging around madly.

"WAISEINAA!"

Nami placed a hand on her hip and rolled her eyes. "Really? You've gotta interrupt right now?" she asked, sighing and bringing out a small, star shaped bottle, tied with a pacific blue sheer ribbon and capped off with a round steel blue top, clasped with an 8-pointed pale gold star engraved with the symbol for Scorpio. Thousands of specks of steel blue light shone inside the bottle. "Hirui, you're watching, right?"

Hirui nodded timidly. "Y-yeah."

Nami smiled. "Good." she then pressed the star shaped bottle to her lips. "Pretty Cure! Star's Blessing!"

Dark blue light exploded all around as Nami's clothes melted away and her hair became undone, hanging loosely over her shoulders. The ribbon from the bottle neck vanished, reforming as a steel blue headband with an 8 pointed star adorning the center of it. The specks of light in the bottle came flurrying out, creating a snowstorm that spun all around Nami's form, sending her arcing upward before she flipped down on her feet. A 5 pointed star appeared at her feet, glowing brightly and frosting the ground beneath her. Icy wind created the glowing form of her top--a steel blue sleeveless top that split into two ruffled portions at the bottom, the circle neckline lined in dim pacific blue ribbon which culminated in a rectangular bow and a ruffle underneath, making her 8-pointed pale gold star brooch look like it was shooting upward--and skirt--a dim pacific blue skirt that stopped a few inches before it reached her knees, the skirt decorated with slightly lighter frills and a light blue cloth hanging over it, adorned with two pale gold stars--before a second burst of wind created her dangly star shaped earrings, her sash and circular brooch clasping it in place, her pale gold choker and her dim pacific blue cuffs that were decorated with long, steel blue frills. Nami spun once, steel blue tights clothing her legs and dim pacific blue boots appearing on her feet, pale gold stars decorating the toe of the shoes. Closing her eyes and placing her hands to her shoulders, a flurry of snow rushed past, creating thin shoulderpads adorned with lighter colored frills, a majestic pale gold cape attaching to the shoulderpads in a flash of light. Ice frosted over both gold brooches, engraving them with the Scorpio sign and a final snowy whirlwind changed Nami's hairstyle. Wavy ocean-teal hair came to her waist, bangs absent due to the winding scorpion tail shaped braid that went all the way across her forehead to hang at the right side of her head, the braid stopping at her elbow. Two strands of hair hung over her right eye, where a third strand of hair curled upward, like a question mark shaped ahoge. Opening her now seafoam green eyes, a mirror of ice appeared in front of Nami, which she leapt through, landing on her knees with a grin of determination.

"The water star with an inner reflection, Cure Scorpio!"

The Waiseinaa swung its crane at Scorpio's form--and the blue Cure effortlessly dodged it, leaping up high and pulling at the long frills on her left cuff. They detached with ease, revealing them to not be frills, but actually individual strips of cloth. As her jump descended, she threw several strips of cloth all around--which shimmered and became tall mirrors, floating all around the impromptu battlefield. The Waiseinaa swung at Scorpio the second she landed--and all Scorpio did was smile again, tossing another cloth beneath her feet. In an instant, it became another mirror, which she effortlessly disappeared into, re-emerging from a mirror high above the Waiseinaa. Scorpio twisted, folding her hands together and swinging them down in a two-handed punch that smashed into the Waiseinaa's head. The monster crumpled to the ground and Scorpio flipped into another mirror, reappearing a ways away from the monster's gut. Kicking off the mirror, she slammed a fierce punch into the Waiseinaa's belly--and was caught off-guard by a swipe from the monster. As she was smacked away, the Cure hastily threw another cloth in front of her, disappearing into the newly formed mirror before she could go hurtling into the nearest building.

She reappeared out of a mirror at the monster's feet, momentum and gravity barrelling her straight into the Waiseinaa's legs. She practically bowled its feel out from under it before gravity finally brought her to a halt--via crashing into a bush. The thunderous thud alerted her that the Waiseinaa's down for the count too--and Scorpio grimaced as she pushed herself to her feet. Shaking away the spinning colors all around her, Scorpio pulled at the strips of cloth on her right cuff. The cloth floated toward the Waiseinaa, forming a circle all around the fallen monster--and the ground frosted under Scorpio's feet.

"Pretty Cure..."

The circle of cloth turned into a floating circle of mirror shaped swords, each razor sharp and pointed at the Waiseinaa.

"Frigid Reflection!"

The swords all flew at the Waiseinaa--but rather than skewer it, they disappeared the second they touched the Waiseinaa's form. For a moment, nothing happened. Then, the Waiseinaa completely frosted over, becoming total ice--and when it shattered, it shattered into mirror shards before vanishing completely, leaving the crane game in its previous place, perfectly intact and unharmed.

Scorpio wiped her brow. "Whew!" she said with a sigh of relief, before turning to face Hirui, clapping her hands in delight. "Cool, right? Oh man, that was a terrible pun..." she scratched her cheek. "But anyways, now that we got that out of the way," she bounced on her heels, smile widening, "I can give you the real news! You're a Pretty Cure, just like me!"

Hirui, who had been staring at the scene with eyes the size of dinner plates the whole time, stiffened, turning pale. "...what...?"

Usami beamed. "You're a Pretty Cure!"

Hirui took three steps back--and then fainted.



In the present, Mei Hidama fell out of her chair. The pigtailed girl hadn't even noticed she'd hit the wooden floor at first, too stunned to compute anything. Her mother, the mother she loved so much, was a Pretty Cure just like she was. Leo, if that Star Capsule meant anything. A dim part of her brain realized this meant they were both fire-sign Cures and was more than a little amused at the coincidence of it. Was it fate? Did it run in the family? It--what on earth did this all mean?

While Mei was struggling to comprehend everything, Ushio stared, jaw hanging open, as she tried to get through it too. Hirui being a Pretty Cure was really surprising, but--but there was something else that had come to mind and the black haired girl leaned forward as much as she could, meeting Usami's face with an enthusiastic expression. "So there are other Cures?! And you and Ursa have powers?!"

Usami jumped, shuffling awkwardly. "A-ah, well..."

"And oh man that Mizuno chick sounds so awesome, she must be friends with Hidama-san right--"

Mei finally recovered, sitting up with a start. Her expression was wild and the girl was trembling in panic and rage. "Why didn't you tell me mama is a Pretty Cure too?!" she demanded, voice high in a hysterical shriek.

"--and what's a Waiseinaa anyways? That's not what Mei fought the other day--"

"That was something I really should have learned beforehand!"

"--and if those aren't the baddies we fought, who are you telling us about? And we have a mission, don't we--"

"What else have you been lying about?!"

Usami, brows furrowed, finally had it. "ENOUGH!" he shouted, leaving both girls speechless. He was trembling, but not in anger. Rather, the poor bear was just overwhelmed, desperately wanting to answer their questions at once, but he just didn't have the capability. With a few deep breaths, the bear tried to tackle their questions one by one. "Mei-chan, I'm real sorry I didn't tell you sooner. Ruru-chan was a Pretty Cure, but...she can't fight right now. A-and--and there are other Cures...I think." he could sense them wanting to ask more questions and held up a fuzzy arm to silence them. "I'll get to that all, promise." he assured, Usami's eyes closing as he tried to remember what had been asked next. His shoulders drooped. "Mama had plenty of amazing powers--she was the stronger of us two."

Ushio frowned. "Was?"

Usami dodged the question. "We're emissaries--" the bear's face scrunched up, not knowing why he wanted to tack on 'of light' to that sentence, then shook his head, having a feeling he'd used the wrong word. "--no, guardians, that's right. I mentioned it to Mei-chan before--Via Lactea. That's the place Mama and I came from."

Mei, who had started winding down from her hysterics, blinked. "That's the Milky Way, right?" At Ushio's puzzled look, Mei's cheeks tinted pink. "It's Latin, I read books about space when I get bored..."

Usami nodded. "You're right though! There's a kingdom there, in the middle of it. That's what Via Lactea is! And all the Inner Stars in the universe get born there--and they all return there, since stars never actually die and stuff." he beamed, clearly enjoying sharing this information. "And a long, lonnnng time ago, King Altair and Queen Vega decided that there needed to be guardians. So they created the Pretty Cure! And all the Pretty Cure came to defend Earth, 'cause it needed the most protection. They started with 12, but there's probably more out there--since people with the brightest stars can become Cures, you know?" he bounced a little, liking the feeling of being useful. "Oh oh! Waiseinaas weren't really that big a deal, eheheh. Just...monsters! Various factions wanted to attack Earth, but they never really got anywhere, because the Cures were always there!"

Ushio frowned once more. "So why aren't they around now?"

Usami didn't answer, instead falling quiet. "Naminami was really nice. Never gave up on anyone." he finally said, a wistful smile coming to his face. "The other girls too. And mama." His expression turned sad, the bear's shoulders slumping.

Mei reached out, gently placing her hand on Usami's head. "Tell us--" she hesitated. Given what Usami was saying and his phrasing, she could hazard a guess as to what had happened. But...there had to be a polite way to phrase it, right? She bit her lip, giving Ushio a pleading look--and Ushio responded with a downturned gaze. She didn't know either. Mei paused, ruffling Usami's fur in silence as an excuse to give her more time to think. "--who made everything change." There. That seemed good enough.

Usami leaned toward Mei's touch, letting out a sniffle. "It...i-it was..."



"Ophiuchus."

Hirui fidgeted at the new voice, feeling woefully undressed for the occasion. Ursa's apartment had a makeshift room--and it had been converted into what Hirui could only describe as mission control. The entire room appeared to be the night sky and in a large circle around the room were the 12 signs of the zodiac. Hirui and Nami stood over the signs of Leo and Scorpio, respectively. But the others weren't there. Hirui recalled Nami telling her soon after she'd become a Pretty Cure that the zodiac Cures had been scattered all over earth in order to protect it better from threats and that as a result, they rarely could all gather in person. The other 10 were represented by colorful orbs that floated like fireflies over their respective symbols. In the center of the room, Ursa--in human form--and Usami--in his teddy bear form--stood before a large platform, its only contents being two glowing discs. Like holograms, two forms stood there. On the left was a man--Altair--with weathered tan skin and black hair, combed perfectly, though there was something...ordinary about him, like he was too plain for the regal, beautifully intricate white robes he was wearing. Coupled with the long, furred cape swathed around his shoulders and the intricate golden crown on his head--Hirui had to bite back the urge to laugh, sorely hoping nothing surfaced in her expression. It was like they'd picked the plainest, most ordinary man ever to become a king...

The woman--Vega--beside him, however, was another story. Pale skinned with long, flowing golden hair and eyes of the same color, Hirui found herself thinking she wasn't worthy to be in the woman's presence. She was the most beautiful woman Hirui had ever had the privilege of seeing and the redhead found herself thinking of a star given human form--that was the sort of beauty and radiance she held. As a contrast, the woman was garbed in elegant robes of dark blue dotted with silver stars, the lacy, intricate crown on her head also silver and shimmering with jewels. Perhaps noting Hirui's discomfort and her staring, Vega offered the redhead a small, polite smile and Hirui flushed in embarrassment, ducking her head and biting back a moan of humiliation when Nami patted her back. "We believe she's resurfaced." Vega continued without missing a beat. "It would be...unwise to ignore this threat."

The glowing pink orb of Gemini flared up. It spoke with a girl's voice, someone around Nami's age. "Who's Ophiuchus anyways?"

Altair spoke up now. "When we created the Pretty Cure, we initially chose you 12 signs of the zodiac. But Ophiuchus is the 13th--and she was not deemed strong enough to become a Pretty Cure." the king sighed, as if reliving the memory. "She was angry at not being chosen. We tried hard to explain it to her, but she refused to listen." A disappointed headshake. "Ophiuchus then disappeared out of the kingdom--but not before threatening us all first. A girl like that..." he paused uneasily, "...she meant every word. If she's resurfaced now, after so many centuries, then..."

Taurus's brown orb flared up. The voice that accompanied it was older than Nami, roughly someone in their twenties: "Then we have to take care of her? Shouldn't be too hard, we've dealt with threats before." A chorus of agreement followed all around.

"She'd likely attack here first--" Vega pointed out, holding her hand up to stop the influx of suggestions, "--and it would be safer if you all stayed on Earth. If she escaped, Earth would be left defenseless."

"But!" Hirui burst out before she could stop herself, "What about you two?!" No sooner had the question left her lips did Hirui clap her hands over her mouth, the girl turning bright red. Rude, so rude! That wasn't how you addressed royalty...

Altair surprised her by offering a chuckle. "You aren't the only Pretty Cure we creat--" he was cut short, however, as something happened out of sight on their end. While the group couldn't hear it, whatever it was had enough sway over both king and queen to make them look so horrified. Altair clenched his fists, turning swiftly on his heel to apprehend the threat--and Vega followed, the two "leaving" the glowing discs in the center of the room. An uncomfortable silence followed, as well as unbearably long interval in which nothing happened outside Ursa and Usami's shouts as to whether the king and queen were all right. Hirui was about to suggest that maybe they could get in contact with the king and queen later--

--when a young, purple haired girl stepped into view. Deathly pale, she was dressed simply with a long sleeved dark gray top and a long black skirt. The girl's eyes were the red of freshly spilled blood and the expression on her face was wild and unhinged. She grinned upon seeing the group. "You're next, Pretty Cure." she declared, her voice echoing eerily--and then the glowing discs shut off.

Another silence followed. Surprisingly, it was Nami who spoke up, the girl's normal fun and joking nature completely gone. "Ursa?" she asked, voice level and serious, "Gather the other Cures." Nami's eyes narrowed. "We have a battle to win."



[eyecatch 1 - A close up of Cure Scorpio, water and ice surrounding all around. With a smirk, she shoots ice out toward the viewer--only for the scene to pan out and reveal that she's created a circle of mirrors all around her so she can check herself out. With a hip sway, she winks at the viewer as a young Cure Leo watches and blushes in secondhand embarrassment. The Starshine logo appears in the corner.]

[eyecatch 2 - A close up of a young Cure Leo. Flames twirl all around her in a dynamic fashion. She sends a burst of flames out toward the viewer--only to reveal she's trying to cook a yam. Leo grins in happiness and takes a bite--only for it to be too hot for her and she flails around in a comical manner. Scorpio sighs and douses ice water on her. The Starshine logo appears in the corner.]



In the evacuated city, the 12 Cures stood on guard. High above, the sky began to rumble, turning from its normal blue to an ugly gray, before turning a wine red. The clouds in the sky turned from while to black, the bottoms of which rumbled with thunder and lit up with lightning. From those clouds, Ophiuchus descended toward the group.

Leo's first thought was that Ophiuchus didn't look much older than she was.

Her second thought was maybe they could be friends.

And then Ophiuchus went on the offensive and her third thought was that Ophiuchus hit hard.

She hadn't even seen it coming--one moment Ophiuchus had landed, the next tendrils of darkness erupted from her, knocking Cures over, Leo herself getting flung into a roof. The three air Cures--Libra, Gemini, and Aquarius--attempted to leap away from the damage, only for several other tendrils of darkness to seize them. Libra and Gemini were flung farther up, whereas Aquarius was snatched and then thrown at full force toward her fellow air Cures. The result was the trio hurtling backward, landing in an undignified heap. Scorpio was faring better, only being clipped by the darkness, the Cure leader relying on her mirrors to avoid the damage. The blue Cure vanishing into a new mirror, she reappeared near Ophiuchus, attempting to inflict some kind of damage on the crazed girl--only for Scorpio to bounce off some invisible shield and skid away, slamming into a building wall.

Ophiuchus laughed and took the opportunity to shatter as many of the mirrors as she could. Out of the corner of her eye, the pale yellow form of Capricorn was rising. "Pretty Cure..." Capricorn wheezed, "...Thorn Cage!" The ground rumbled beneath their feet as large thorned vines rose from the earth. Within moments, a cage of thorn vines trapped Ophiuchus in place. Capricorn grinned--and so did Ophiuchus. In the next instant, pure black flames engulfed the earth-based cage, reducing Capricorn's handiwork to cinders--and then Ophiuchus sent another tendril straight at Capricorn, sending the pale yellow Cure careening straight at the still recovering Scorpio.

"Pretty Cure Ocean Crash!"

Taken by surprise, the purple haired girl gasped as Cancer's attack came rushing at her. Ophiuchus leapt up high to avoid the brunt of it, though the water still managed to snuff her flames. Before she could formulate an attack plan, there was a burst of red light.

"Pretty Cure Burning Arrow!"

A barrage of fiery arrows exploded into Ophiuchus and from the ground, the scarlet clad Sagittarius smirked. "Little girls shouldn't play with fire!" she taunted. As the smoke from the attack cleared, however, Sagittarius cringed. Despite the burns, Ophiuchus was still very much alive--and now she was mad. The darkness tendrils shot out, seizing a large tree and uprooting it with little effort...and then Ophiuchus let out a wild scream, flinging the tree at Sagittarius and Cancer. The fire and water Cures were too scared to move, Cancer cowering into Sagittarius's arms--and then the brown-clad Taurus leapt in with a shout of "Pretty Cure Ground Uprising!" that created a massive earthen wall putting the small group in between the oncoming tree. The tree barreled into it--but the earthen shield held out, rendering the crazed girl's attack harmless. Ophiuchus screamed in rage again and Gemini maneuvered herself to the top of the earth wall. Glowing with a pink power, she grinned.

"Pretty Cure Gale Crescent!"

Leo, who had finally recovered thanks to Ursa's healing, struggled to her feet. She found herself behind Ophiuchus, the purple haired girl's back facing her--and with a grimace, Leo decided to take advantage of her position. "Pretty Cure Flame Shot!"

Both attacks hit Ophiuchus, who cried out in pain. "You..." she hissed, "I hate all of you!" And then she exploded with darkness again, fierce tendrils of darkness lashing out at the group. Getting to their feet again, it was Aries that illuminated with a fiery power, her expression grimly determined.

"Pretty Cure Fire Whip!" she shouted, launching herself at Ophiuchus--who retaliated with dark flames once more, snuffing out Aries's own fire and replacing it with her own. The red Cure screamed in pain before Ophiuchus seized her and sent her hurtling into pavement. Pisces managed to catch her, whereas Ursa hurried to put out the flames and heal Aries before the damage became too much. Gritting their teeth, Pisces and Virgo teamed up.

"Pretty Cure Water Lance!"
"Pretty Cure Petal Spiral!"

Libra jumped in as well. "Pretty Cure Air Slice!"

The three attacks rushed against Ophiuchus--and impacted against her re-established shield, The attacks then rebounded and were sent back flying toward the three of them--and then the attacks amplified, no doubt by Ophiuchus's dark powers. Ursa and Usami leapt in to shield the scattered Cures--but only served to get the brunt of the attack directed at them. Both bears collapsed...but Ophiuchus wasn't done.

She laughed. "This is the power of Pretty Cure?!" her voice echoed from so high above and her form darkened. A monstrous dark aura writhed all around her, extending from her form and becoming a malicious looking dragon--that split into 12 smaller serpents, attacking each of the fallen Pretty Cure. Tossing them into buildings, destroying architecture--it didn't matter what destruction Ophiuchus rained on the surroundings. She wanted the Pretty Cure dead. And while most of the Pretty Cure were badly hurt, two had managed to stay on their feet. Trembling with the effort to stand, Aquarius and Scorpio stood defiantly, glaring up at Ophiuchus. If they could freeze her, then maybe...

"Pretty Cure Frigid Reflection!"
"Pretty Cure Wind Chill!"

The two ice based attacks flew toward Ophiuchus, though Scorpio's had much less power behind it. As a result, it barely made Ophiuchus budge. Scorpio swore under her breath--and then looked horrified when Ophiuchus shattered the last of her mirrors. She was terrified--without her mirrors, she couldn't perform her finishing attack, nor could she rely on her surprise tactics. But deep down, Scorpio knew she couldn't make this just about her. "We can still do this!" she declared, punching her fist into her open palm. And slowly but surely, the Cures regrouped with Scorpio, each battered and hurt, but still willing to fight. "If she's gonna remain up there..." Scorpio continued, pointing up toward the floating Ophiuchus in the sky, "...then we take the fight to her."

One by one, the Cures nodded. Each of them glowing with power, they shot off like shooting stars toward Ophiuchus and--



--"Enough! Enough!" Mei begged, tears running down her cheeks. Usami was trembling, struggling to save face by not crying--but as he'd detailed the battle, the mask began to slip, revealing just how broken up over the matter he really was. Ushio was already bawling, sobbing pitifully into the table. Mei sniffled and tried to dry her teary eyes, but when it didn't work, she just shook her head and seized Usami, hugging the bear as tight as she could. "It's okay, you don't have to keep telling the story!" she insisted shakily. "A-and--and you can cry, it's okay! I-I won't get mad, I-I'll--"

But she couldn't finish. Heeding her words, Usami let himself finally break down--and it was enough to get Mei going too. She cried for Usami, for Ursa, for all the fallen Cures, for her mother, for everyone and couldn't stop. Her mind raced in a thousand directions all at once as she sobbed and cried and apologized repeatedly for making Usami re-live such painful memories, hugging him tighter and tighter as if her hug would chase all the demons away. Soon enough, Ushio had made her way over to her, hugging Mei tight--which only made Mei cry even harder.

The trio stayed like that for a while, hugging and crying until they'd cried all their feelings out. When they'd finally calmed down, Usami dozed off, whereas Mei and Ushio lapsed into a slightly uncomfortable silence.

It was Ushio who spoke first. "So...what are we gonna do?"

Mei tried to reply, only letting out a raspy croak. It was such an absurd noise that both girls laughed, tension in the room eased ever so slightly. With an apologetic smile, Mei tried again. "I...I-I dunno. I can't tell m-mama about it, I mean..." Mei trailed off. It was a lot of information to sift through. The thing that scared her the most was that Pretty Cure could die--but considering what had just happened to her, she supposed it wasn't too far-fetched. It still terrified her, however, and if her mother knew...

"I wanna keep fighting."

Mei blinked, surprised at how serious Ushio sounded. Her red-rimmed gaze flicked over toward Ushio, expression both fearful and puzzled.

"I-I mean, it sounds like a suicide mission considering everything we just heard." Ushio admitted, scratching her cheek. "But--if we don't fight, who will?" her gaze pled with Mei to give her some different answer, but Mei only looked down. "I don't want anything like what happened to you or Arata or anyone else to happen. And no one else can fight it, you know that." Mei looked down again, making Ushio feel slightly guilty. Two for two. "Hey." she ventured, placing a hand on Mei's shoulder. "Don't look so down. It's not like we're going at this separately. You've got me and I've got you!"

Mei sniffled, eyes watering again. "Ushio-chan..."

"We're a team! That means we back each other up!" Ushio grinned, before her green eyes sparkled mischievously. "Besides, you think I'm gonna let you take all the credit~?"

Mei's eyes watered even more, though she puffed her cheeks out indignantly. "...i-it'd be you that'd take all the credit!" she accused--to which Ushio only ruffled her hair, making Mei blink again. "Ushio-chan...?"

"See, you're already cheering up!" Ushio laughed.

A knock at the door cut off Mei's response. The auburn haired girl cleared her throat and rubbed her eyes, hoping she looked presentable--

"Ushio?" the person at the front door said, voice slightly muffled due to the door being shut. Mei's eyes widened in recognition--it was Kaiyou, Ushio's twin sister. "Mom and Dad say it's time to come home."

"One second!" Ushio called back, before looking back at Mei and lowering her voice. "Will you be okay?" she asked, placing a gentle hand on Mei's shoulder again. "I can stay longer if you need me to."

Mei hesitated. It would be nice, yes--but she knew she couldn't simply rely on Ushio's kindness. She was the leader! (At least that was what Usami mentioned once.) That meant she had to learn to be brave and take care of things on her own. Face her fears and all that. Mei's gaze flicked downward once more--before she forced a smile to her face, politely shaking her head. "Thanks but no thanks, Ushio-chan." she said.

Ushio eyed her suspiciously--before finally sighing. "Okay, if you say so. But call me if you need to talk, all right?"

Mei nodded. "I will, I will." she then moved to open the door, greeting Kaiyou with a smile. "Hello, Kai-chan!"

Kaiyou may have been Ushio's identical twin, but she lacked Ushio's fanned out hair--and the prominent ahoge that Ushio sported as well--her hairstyle instead being neatly combed black hair that framed her face and reached her shoulders. Kaiyou eyed Mei carefully for a moment, before offering a slight nod of greeting. "Do Pretty Cure meetings usually take this long?"

"Aha, no, not r--" Mei answered, then stopped, gray eyes widening. "--h-how'd you know about--?!"

Ushio laughed nervously, whereas Kaiyou sighed. "We don't keep secrets." they both said at once.

But Ushio shifted slightly to get Mei's attention, mouthing out: Usually.

Mei bit back a sigh of relief. Usami's story would have to stay a secret, at least for now. Realizing that Kaiyou was waiting, Mei quickly blushed. "A-ah! Let me get some of those snacks boxed so you can take them home, Ushio-chan!" she worked quickly, boxing some of what was left in a plastic container from the kitchen. Soon enough, she was done and the two girls were off. "See you soon, Ushio-chan, Kai-chan!"

"Take care!" both twins said. Ushio laughed at the fact they'd echoed again, whereas Kaiyou merely sighed once more.

Mei waved in parting, smiling brightly as they left--but the second they were out of her sight, the girl's shoulders slumped, smile immediately vanishing. She quietly closed the door, picked up the sleeping Usami, and shuffled to her room. Placing Usami on her dresser where he always was, Mei cleared a spot on the floor, sat down and hugged her knees to her chest--

--and let all her doubts and fears completely consume her.



Rasalhague sighed in relief. Soon after Cebalrai had been defeated by the two Pretty Cure, Ophiuchus had suddenly spiked a fever and wouldn't stop shuddering in pain. The three members of the Serpens had stopped their star duties to care for the girl around the clock, and given the bags under Rasalhague's eyes, it wasn't hard to see who had spent the most time caring for the ill Ophiuchus.

"Is she finally well?" came Cebalrai's voice as she walked into the tower.

He offered a weak nod of relief. "The fever broke and she's finally able to sleep peacefully." It had been torture to watch Ophiuchus in so much pain. He reached out to gently place a hand on her forehead, expression becoming something softer. "I'm glad though. I was starting to get worried."

The two kept a watchful eye on Ophiuchus for a few moments, before Cebalrai broke the silence. "Lady Ophiuchus mentioned Omega again."

Rasalhague's eyes hardened and he nodded stiffly. "I know."

Cebalrai didn't respond for a moment, only stepping forward. "Rasalhague." she stated, blank gaze flicking toward him. "I believe I should take the next watch. You need your rest--"

Rasalhague smiled.

"--as you will need to be well-rested to fight the Pretty Cure."

The smile faded. She was right, of course, and a glance over at Ophiuchus only convinced him of this even more. "Right, right. It's my turn after all, isn't it?" he smiled a smile he didn't feel, turning on his heel to leave. "And we have some lost time to make up for." he spoke more to himself as he walked out of the tower, his trench coat billowing behind him. He strode out into the ruins with a purpose, finally finding it in a large piece of a mirror. He tapped it lightly. "Show me the place the Pretty Cure live in."

The mirror warped and turned dark, before it changed. It no longer showed a reflection, instead showing the various streets of Lucente Bay. As the mirror explored, Rasalhague tapped the mirror again. The image halted, revealing a flyer. Rasalhague read it carefully--and then smiled.

"Ah. That'll do nicely."

---

ED: "Twinkle Twinkle" - Yui Horie

---

ON THE NEXT EPISODE:

Mei: Eeee, it's time for the town festival! There's gonna be stalls and yukata and we all go to the observatory at the end!
Usami: Mei-chan, Mei-chan, can I dress up too?
Mei: Well, I dunno if there's yukata for bears...
Ushio: Bah! He'll be fine, you worry too much!
Mei: Mmm, true. Hey, isn't that--?
Usami: Uwah! He's attacking the observatory!
Mei: WHAT?! Why I oughta--!
Usami: ...! That's...!
Ushio: Looks like Mei's all fired up! Next time on Starshine! Pretty ✰ Cure: Attack at the observatory! Aries's burning rage. Don't forget to make a wish next time too!
From:
Anonymous( )Anonymous This account has disabled anonymous posting.
OpenID( )OpenID You can comment on this post while signed in with an account from many other sites, once you have confirmed your email address. Sign in using OpenID.
User
Account name:
Password:
If you don't have an account you can create one now.
Subject:
HTML doesn't work in the subject.

Message:

 
Notice: This account is set to log the IP addresses of everyone who comments.
Links will be displayed as unclickable URLs to help prevent spam.

Profile

Starshine! Pretty ✰ Cure

May 2017

S M T W T F S
 123456
789101112 13
1415 16171819 20
21222324252627
28293031   

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios