The Thuban Initiative
Act 03 –

Tokyo, Japan

“Tell us about your new movie.”

Hakkinki looked over at the interviewer and cleared his throat. “Well, as you know it’s a science-fiction movie. I play the part of an astronaut on a journey to find the center of the galaxy.”

“It sounds fascinating. Will there be any romance in the movie?”

“That would be telling,” he replied with a wink.

“Besides, I’d have to hurt him if there was any involving his character,” Ryuusenshi joked from where she sat in a chair beside him. The audience laughed.

In the four months since Hakkinki had proposed, their engagement had gotten a lot of publicity and had been subjected to a great deal of speculation. To the public, it had been quite sudden. The two hadn’t known each other very long in their eyes. Even their respective agents had been shocked.

It wasn’t their fault, really. Ryuusenshi and Hakkinki weren’t about to tell everyone about their past lives, about the court on Thuban, and most certainly not about their secret identities as Sailordraco and KnightCepheus. They simply told anyone who asked that it was a case of love at first sight, which was technically true given how they’d met on Earth.

Ryuusenshi was notoriously protective of Hakkinki, which made aspects of his acting career somewhat difficult. It was just lucky that there were as many roles for heroes and villains as there were for romantic leads. His first movie had been so successful that he’d been flooded with offers. He’d been able to pick and choose, finding parts that were challenging to him as an actor as well as acceptable to his fiancée.

“I’m sure his fans across the country will be disappointed,” the interviewer said sadly.

“I haven’t been able to convince Ryuu that a script’s romance means nothing to me as a person,” Hakkinki said, shrugging.

“I’m what you call the jealous type,” Ryuusenshi said, sounding not the least bit apologetic.

“Well, maybe one day the two of you could work on a movie together,” the interviewer suggested.

Before either one could reply, a giant monster crashed through the roof of the studio and immediately ran towards the audience. They fled in terror as it came at them, singling out a small group. It cornered them, snarling.

Ryuusenshi and Hakkinki ran off, pretending to be scared and heading out of the building. Instead, they ducked into the dressing room they’d used before the interview.

“Draco Spirit Power!”

“Cepheus Spirit Power!”

“Make Up!”

Back out in the studio, they got a better look at the beast. Draco concluded that it was a Chimera, one of the many monsters from Greek myth. Cepheus looked worried.

“We’re not dealing with the Olympians I hope.”

“We beat Sailorhera, so unless KnightZeus has rallied the remaining ones, that’s not likely.” A woman with rather large feet and floppy rabbit ears on her head jumped down through the hole in the roof and walked over to the Chimera. “Do you have one?” she asked. Her voice had a coldly perky quality to it.

The monster backed away from its ravaged victim, revealing the oval crystal hovering over the remains. She walked over and bent to pick it up.

“Stop right there!” Sailordraco shouted, dropping into a fighting stance with her Glaive.

The woman ignored her, picking up the crystal. “It’s not the best specimen but it will suffice. He’ll have to make do with it.”

“He who?” KnightCepheus asked.

Again, she ignored him. “Come, let’s go find some more.”

“Celestial Dragon Strike!” Draco had run out of patience.

That was when they learned what those huge feet were good for. She leaped out of the way; the attack blasted apart a large section of the stands. She landed a few feet away and looked at the two senshi.

“Attack!” The Chimera charged at them, claws bared to rip them to pieces.

“Magnetic Flux!”

The attack slowed it down a little, but it kept coming. It crashed into Cepheus, digging its claws into his shoulders. Enraged, Draco swung the sharp blade of her Glaive at it, slashing open its side from shoulder to flank. It howled in pain, releasing Cepheus. “That’s my boyfriend, you disgusting creature! Silver Glaive Retribution!”

From the roof, the brown skinned girl clad in a cream, black, and carnelian fuku watched as the Chimera vaporized. Clearly an alien with the rounded ears perched on the top of her head and the long fluffy tail peeking out from beneath her skirt, she observed everything dispassionately. She didn’t recognize the rabbit eared woman, but she undoubtedly belonged to the Initiative. From what she knew about the Initiative, this was one of their scientists, for only a scientist could control one of the monstrous Kaiju.

I wish I had more time to study this, but I unfortunately have more important matter to attend to. She stood, grabbing her large black hammer and turned to leave.

The rabbit woman chose that moment to escape from Draco and Cepheus through the roof hole. Spotting the alien senshi, she paused. “And who might you be, then?”

The alien turned. “While I would love nothing more than to make your acquaintance, I unfortunately must go.”

“So soon? I’m sure you have a lovely Soul Crystal.”

“Of that, I am certain; however, you may not have it.”

“I will have it.”

“Your Kaiju was destroyed. Is it not Initiative policy to return to headquarters when that occurs?”

“You seem to know a lot about us.” She paused, spotting the symbol emblazoned on the rounded rectangular patch at the center of the senshi’s chest. “Now I know you. Your specific name escapes me, but you’re one of those senshi that escaped from us.”

“That, I am.”

“You will come with me now. Our Director of Acquisitions would like a chat with you.”

“I must decline; as I previously stated, I must be going now. Perhaps some other time.”

“That wasn’t a request.”

“I am aware of your intentions.”

“I’m sure your friends would like to see you.”

“I am certain they would, but that will have to wait.” She brandished her hammer. “This conversation is over.”

“Not by a long shot!”

“You leave me no choice.” She charged, swinging the hammer at the woman’s mid section. It connected, but only sent her staggering back, doing no apparent damage.

“You dare to attack me?”

“You left me little choice in the matter.”

“I won’t forgive this insult. Lepus is my name. Your Soul Crystal will be mine!” She vanished, leaving the alien senshi alone again on the roof.

Previous Chapter
Next Chapter