Yamagoto Plaza was full to bursting with young women in garish, often scandalous costumes, all dancing the same dance and singing the same insipid song. Were it not for the terrified, uncomfortable, confused expressions most of them wore as they danced and sang, it could be mistaken for a massive flash mob.
Standing atop an ornamental sculpture, presiding over the chaos, was a tall, pale-skinned man in a dark red haori with 「オタク一番」 emblazoned down the broad black silk lapels. Underneath the haori he wore a skintight blue bodysuit with white gloves and boots. His eyes were covered by a pink mask that looked like a cross between a butterfly and a bra, and a matching pink mask that looked like panties covered his mouth. His wild, spiky hot pink hair was swept back by a black hachimaki. In one hand, he held a broad paper fan with a picture of a dancing anime idol singer on it. "Yes...yes, my idol army! Dance! Sing! Become the ultimate idol unit! We will take over Japan and show the world the beauty of IDOLS!"
The sound of snapping fingers echoed through the plaza, drowning out the singing of the idol mob. Otaku looked around wildly. "What? Who's there?!"
"Penetrating the darkness of night, streaking through the atmosphere, resounding truth, we are three shooting stars!"
Three slender women appeared. They all wore black leather hot pants, bikini tops, and thigh-high boots, along with elbow-length black leather gloves. Thin belts criss-crossed their waists, joined by a star-shaped clasp over their navels, and each wore a circlet upon her brow. One had straight, dark, curly hair with a long, straightened ponytail, another had slicked-back brown hair in a long ponytail, and the third had long, wavy silver-blue hair in a ponytail.
"Sailor Star Fighter!" the dark-haired one introduced.
"Sailor Star Maker!" the brown-haired one called out.
"Sailor Star Healer!" the third one said.
"SAILOR STARLIGHTS...STAGE ON!"
"Tch...!" Otaku spat. "You'll become my idols, just like all the rest!" He waved his fan, firing a rainbow beam at the Starlights.
"I won't let you!" Sailor Star Fighter declared. A ring of glowing stars orbited her body as she raised a finger to the heavens. "STAR SERIOUS LASER!" The stars streaked into her fingertip; she pointed at the incoming beam and fired a bright laser of starlight, which intercepted and cancelled Otaku's attack. "Healer! Now!"
"Right!" Sailor Star Healer leapt high into the air, gathering crackling energy in her palms. "STAR SENSITIVE INFERNO!" Dozens of arcs of electricity danced forth from her outstretched hands, trapping Otaku in a crackling web. He roared in agony as he twitched, sparks snapping across his body. He fired off another rainbow beam from his fan; it missed wide and hit a waitress in the cafe behind them. She immediately turned into a singing, dancing idol.
"That fan...!" Sailor Star Maker said. "It's how he's doing this!"
"If we destroy it, they'll all turn back to normal?" Sailor Star Healer asked.
"Only one way to find out!" Sailor Star Fighter said.
"I won't let you!" Otaku retorted, wildly firing rainbow blast after rainbow blast, forcing the Starlights on the defensive.
Sailor Star Maker raised her hands above her head, a glowing star forming between them as she spun in place. "STAR GENTLE UTERUS!" She flung an energy blast at Otaku; it expanded into dozens of glowing bands of light, trapping his arms and legs. He struggled and strained to no avail.
"STAR SERIOUS LASER!" Sailor Star Fighter's attack pierced the fan, ripping it apart. A tiny black and purple butterfly flew out, ascending to the ceiling high above and phasing through it. Otaku himself collapsed to the ground, an oily purple mist writhing across his body, leaving behind a nondescript, unconscious NEET.
All around them, the transformed idols continued singing and dancing.
Sailor Star Healer frowned. "It...it didn't work," she said.
"Wow, this is some dance party." The Starlights snapped their heads around as a young blonde boy in skintight black leather landed behind them, his feline green eyes surveying the scene. "Looks like we're fashionably late, My Lady."
A girl in a black-spotted red body stocking landed next to him, her blue eyes taking in the scene with fierce intensity as she spun a yo-yo at her side.
* * * * *
Sailor Moon, Sailor Jupiter, and Sailor Venus raced across the city, headed for Yamagoto Plaza. "You think there'll be anything left for us to do?" Jupiter asked. "I mean, if Ladybug and Chat Noir beat us there?"
"I don't know," Sailor Moon said, "but we need to be there anyway, just in case." She frowned. "I can't get hold of Ami-chan or Rei-chan."
"They were with Sparkle-san and Possible-san today, right?"
"I just have a bad feeling...let's hurry."
* * * * *
Ladybug's lips pressed into a thin line as she surveyed the scene. "Okay, pretty obvious what happened here," she said. "Strange that all they're doing is standing around singing and dancing." She frowned. "He got Sailor Mercury and Sailor Mars."
"Yeah, and two of those girls from the other dimension," Chat Noir agreed, his eyes never leaving the Starlights. "More importantly, what's out of place here?"
Ladybug's frown deepened. "Yeah, that's..." She shook her head. "Nevermind. We need to find the Akumatized."
"Excuse me," Sailor Star Healer said, "if you're talking about the guy that did all this? We took care of him already." She pointed to the still-unconscious man on the ground in the middle of the singing crowd.
Ladybug stared, eyes wide. "You did WHAT?!" she yelled.
"Great," Chat Noir groaned, facepalming. "Just great."
Sailor Star Fighter scowled. "Look, I don't know who you kids are, but we have a problem here, so—"
"Yeah, you've got a problem,," Ladybug spat. "Do you have any idea what you've done?!" She took an aggressive step forward. "Did you see where the Akuma went?"
The Starlights looked at each other. "Akuma?"
"THE BUTTERFLY!" Ladybug yelled. "There was a butterfly, right?"
"Oh yeah, it flew away," Sailor Star Maker said indifferently, pointing at the ceiling.
"Merde," Chat Noir grumbled.
Sailor Star Fighter frowned. "You seem to know what's going on here," she said.
"Yeah, we do," Ladybug said. "Because this is our fight. Who even are you, anyway? Besides really skanky dressers—"
"Seiya? Taiki? Yaten? What are you three doing here?!"
All eyes turned to Sailor Moon, Sailor Jupiter, and Sailor Venus as they arrived, looking around with wide eyes.
"Okay, this is...weird," Sailor Jupiter said.
"What's going on here, some kind of contest?" Sailor Venus asked.
Ladybug turned to Sailor Moon. "Do you know these three skanks?" she asked, motioning at the Starlights.
"HEY!" the Starlights protested.
Sailor Moon frowned. "Yes. They're...allies. But they shouldn't be on Earth at all. What—"
"Nevermind that right now," Chat Noir said. "They just screwed up big time."
"Will somebody please explain what you two are so worked up about?" Sailor Star Maker demanded.
And then a massive cloud of purple butterflies swarmed through the plaza.
Anyone who wasn't a transformed magical warrior or a dancing idol transformed into a motionless copy of Otaku.
"Oh snap," Sailor Jupiter said, staring around with wide eyes.
Ladybug groaned. "And here we go again," she muttered.
The Starlights, for their part, backed away, grouping tightly together, their faces pale. "We...we didn't know," Sailor Star Healer said shakily.
"What...what just happened?" Sailor Star Maker asked.
Sailor Moon approached Ladybug. "Ladybug? How...how do we fix this?"
Ladybug shook her head. "The last time this happened, the original Akumatized had to be possessed again. We weren't able to do anything about the copies until we had to fight the original a second time."
"That doesn't sound like a good plan," Sailor Jupiter said doubtfully.
"Yeah, especially since we don't know how this Akumatized was possessed in the first place," Chat Noir said. He clenched his fists. "This is a disaster."
"Our friends are..." Sailor Moon said, biting her lip as she watched Ami and Rei continue to dance and sing. "There's nothing we can do?"
Ladybug shook her head. "I don't know," she said. "I don't even know if using my Lucky Charm would help right now."
Sailor Venus pursed her lips. "Usagi? Maybe...do you think...?"
Sailor Moon nodded. "It's worth a try." She jumped high into the air, holding out her right hand. A short pink wand topped with a golden crescent moon appeared, a shining silver crystal glowing in the curve of the moon. She seized it, then traced a glowing silver circle in the air.
"MOON HEALING ESCALATION!"
A silver wave spread through the crowd. All the idols glowed a soft silver; slowly, they stopped dancing and singing, their clothes returning to whatever they were wearing before. They looked around in confusion.
The motionless copies of Otaku remained.
Sailor Moon landed next to her friends, grimacing. "Well, at least I freed our friends," she said. In the crowd, she saw Rei and Ami look at each other, nod, and rush off.
Chat Noir blinked. "Huh. I guess her powers are similar to yours, huh Bugaboo?"
"Looks that way," Ladybug said. "But that still leaves half the problem."
Sailor Mars and Sailor Mercury joined the group. "What the hell's going on?" Sailor Mars asked.
"Long story short, the Starlights showed up and made everything worse," Sailor Jupiter said.
Sailor Star Maker snorted. "So much for a happy reunion," she said. "I know when I'm not wanted." She leapt up to the second floor balcony. The other Starlights looked at each other, then back at the Sailor Soldiers. Sighing, they vacated the scene as well.
Sailor Mars blinked. "Okay, that...was a little rude."
Sailor Moon sighed. "We'll have to find them and talk it out later, once everything's settled down and we're all calm. It's...it's just a huge misunderstanding." She shook her head. "Alright...so there's no other way to save the rest of these people except find the original Akuma and purify it?"
"You could always go Eternal and use Starlight Honeymoon Therapy Kiss," Sailor Venus suggested.
Sailor Moon frowned. "I'd rather not risk it," she said. "I don't want to make the same mistake the Starlights made and screw this mess up even worse." She looked to Ladybug. "This is your call. What's our next move?"
Ladybug rubbed her chin. "If I remember correctly, the original Akuma will have returned to Le Papillon," she said. "If we can find him, we can..." She shook her head. "But if it were that easy, we'd have put an end to this months ago."
The Sailor Soldiers looked at each other uneasily. "Actually," Sailor Mercury said, "we know exactly where he is." She paused, then added, "We also know who he is."
Ladybug and Chat Noir gasped, giving her their full attention. "Seriously?!" Chat Noir asked excitedly.
Sailor Mercury gave him a sympathetic glance. "I'm sorry, Agreste-san," she said quietly. "I'm...I'm very sorry." She took a steadying breath.
"Le Papillon is in the Lavender Suite, one floor down from the penthouse."
Chat Noir's eyes widened. He took a step back. "No," he whispered.
"Adrien?" Ladybug asked quietly, watching the color drain from his face.
Chat Noir turned and fled, his baton extending as he vaulted to the second floor.
Ladybug watched him, then turned back to Sailor Mercury. "What's going on?"
The Sailor Soldiers looked at each other. Sailor Mercury shook her head. "Chat Noir's father is Le Papillon," she said.
Ladybug's face turned ashen. "No..."