|World Duel Carnival
Author: ZeXal Fanatic PM
Basically, this is my rendition on the World Duel Carnival! It's a fun little story full of twists, turns, and best of all, dueling!Rated: Fiction T - English - Fantasy/Humor - Yuma T. & Astral - Chapters: 46 - Words: 506,967 - Reviews: 120 - Favs: 40 - Follows: 26 - Updated: 05-12-13 - Published: 09-21-11 - id: 7400973
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Author's Note: I cannot believe it's been a year already since I began this story. 48 episodes later…It seems like just yesterday that Astral dueled! Anyway, moving on from my sentimental moment, I would like to thank you readers and reviewers for staying loyal to the story for this long! Although the World Duel Carnival arc is pretty much said and done for the anime, there are still various surprises and shocks in store for this story! Stay tuned for more of them!
Chapter 36: The Final Frontier
That evening in the Tsukumo household, it was hard to decipher which was creating the most noise. The competitors, the blaring whistle of Haru's tea kettle and a frustrated Akari on a deadline, seemed to be rather even.
"What's wrong, deary?" asked the elderly Tsukumo woman, passing through the living room to make her way into the kitchen.
"I was supposed to have an interview with Mr. Heartland today for an article that's supposed to come out tomorrow," huffed the teenager, blowing air upward to push her scarlet bangs out of her face. "But it turned out he was busy and I still have to get an article to the chief editor."
She gave the blank "Microsoft Word" document on her silver laptop a fierce look.
"On top of it," she added under her breath, "Charlie just sent me another email message…"
Haru couldn't help but giggle at the last part of Akari's rant. Ever since her reencounter with Charlie a couple days before, she had been more short-tempered than usual. Whether it was because of him or her loss in the World Duel Carnival, however, was more than a little complex to decode.
"It'll be ok, Akari," Haru consoled as she turned around to walk over to her granddaughter. She sat on the couch next to the anxious redhead, patting her back warmly. "I'm sure if it came down to it, you could fake something."
"Thanks, Granny," Akari said, smiling a little at the latter part of her consolation. "But I don't think it's completely ethical. And besides, if Mr. Heartland happens to read the Heartland Press, I'm sure he'd be a little sour about me putting words into his mouth."
"I guess so," Haru nodded, laughing at her own answer. In her old age, her logic quite often appeared to fall through the cracks. Nevertheless, she remained positive and encouraging to her grandchildren.
"Can you take the kettle off of the stove, Granny Haru?" complained Akari. "It's giving me a headache."
Haru stuck a finger in her ear and wiggled it around minutely. As she removed it, she was clearly able to hear the high-pitched whine of the kettle.
"Oops. I'm sorry," she apologized, her smile never leaving her face. "I must have forgotten that I had tea waiting."
Akari sighed and put her face in her palm. As much as she loved her grandmother, it was things like that that concerned her when it came to her grandmother's safety.
The couch became lighter as Haru removed herself from it. Continuing her stroll into the kitchen, the woman with the light purple hair grabbed an oven-glove and removed the steaming kettle from the stove.
As she was carefully pouring the scolding liquid into a pristine porcelain cup, she heard a knock on the front door. Her fingers shook as she debated putting the tea down to answer the door.
"Akari!" she shouted so that her granddaughter could hear her. "Could you get the door?"
"Alright, Grandma!" Akari shouted back.
The youthful journalist rose from the couch. Stretching her sore limbs, she winced as her back and legs cracked. It wasn't painful, but the sound wasn't exactly pleasant to the ear.
She slumped over to the door and unlocked it before jiggling the handle and opening it fully.
A man stood in front of her, clearly one she had never seen before. He appeared to be a bit older than her, but not by much.
"Hello there…" she began, taking in the image of the male. "May I help you?"
"Yes, you may. I was wondering…Is Yuma Tsukumo here?"
The answer to the question was no for at that moment, Yuma Tsukumo was tossing and turning in his dinky fairground sleeping bag.
As exhausted as his body was, sleep proved to be a harder task than he initially imagined. Every time he came close to finding sleep, it evaded him by replacing itself with images of Kaito and Shark.
Astral floated near the top of the small tent, looking at Yuma curiously. He wished to know the cause of the boy's unrest, but he had learnt his lesson once before about waking Yuma during his resting period.
"Ugh…" grumbled the duelist with the pink highlights in his hair, giving Astral the sign that he was indeed awake.
"I have been watching you wriggle around for quite a while now, Yuma," Astral stated.
"What of it?" a snarky Yuma barked.
"I wish to know why you cannot sleep now when you've always been able to do it so easily during your classes at school," an innocent Astral explained himself.
"I…I guess it's just my nerves," Yuma sighed. He sat up in the sleeping bag and rested his chin on two cupped hands.
"Your nerves?" Astral questioned. "Are you scared of something?"
"I…I don't know," Yuma truthfully replied. "I just keep thinking of our duels today."
"You mean Shark and Kaito?"
Yuma nodded. He leaned over and grabbed his deck box. Shuffling through the Extra Deck section, he located the card he was searching for.
"Number 96: Black Mist…" Yuma read.
"The embodiment of the darkness that was surrounding Shark's heart," Astral said. "That Number possesses a great deal of power…"
"Shark gave it to us," Yuma whispered. "We would have definitely lost the duel, but he cancelled it and gave us this card. Why? Why, Shark?"
"I don't know," Astral thought aloud. "But even if he hadn't, eventually the two of you would have had to…"
"I know," Yuma frowned. "It's the same thing with Kaito. He's a tough opponent and…and I guess his power does scare me at times. But I know that he isn't what he appears to be."
"What do you mean, Yuma?"
"I don't think he wants to hunt the Numbers," proposed Yuma. "I think someone's making him do it. He said…he said he sold his soul to the devil."
Astral remembered clearly, nodding. Unfortunately, he had no idea what that statement meant, let alone the profound amount of reality it contained.
"If I have to face them again, somewhere down the line," Yuma spoke, making a fist with his hand, "I want to be ready."
As soon as he made his new resolve, he was shocked by the loud noise emitting from his right side. His eyes popped open as the sudden ringing of his D-Gazer nearly gave him a heart attack.
Snatching the item forcefully from his stack of belongings, he clicked the bright green "Receive Call" button on the device.
"Hello?" he answered, his voice both frightened and annoyed.
"Hello, Yuma," came the sweet, soft reply on the other end of the line. "How are you?"
"G-Good, Granny Haru," Yuma responded, his voice noticeably gentler now that he knew the identity of the caller. "How 'bout you?"
"I'm just peachy," Haru beamed. Although Yuma forgot to click the video feed function of his D-Gazer so he could see his grandmother, it sounded as though she took a sip of tea after her sentence.
"I don't mean to be impolite, Granny Haru," Yuma coughed nervously, "but why is it that you called me so late at night?"
"Were you sleeping?" Haru's remorseful voice speculated. "I'm sorry, Yuma."
"No problem," Yuma quickly added. "Honest!"
"Well, to answer your question…"
Haru took another sip of her tea.
"You have a guest here. Someone was looking for you and I thought it would be rude to turn them away so late at night without getting to see you first."
"A guest?" Yuma said inquiringly.
Astral descended from his high-up location, coming down to Yuma's face level. They both exchange a slightly worried glance before Yuma spoke into his dueling mechanism.
"Hold on, Grandma. I'm on my way."
Though Heartland wasn't always the perfect paradise that had zero crime rates and clean streets, especially so since the arrival of the Numbers, Yuma was lucky not to encounter any trouble on his way to his house.
He stumbled a few times in the dimly lit city, tripping over little things that would be more obvious during the daytime. Marbles and litter were now among his list of least favorites.
Who leaves marbles out on the street anyway? he thought as he walked the steps to his front door. Puffing from lack of breath, the red-faced youth opened the door, barging through the living room.
"Gr-Granny Haru!" Yuma shouted while his breath returned. "Where…"
"In here, Yuma," was the retort from the kitchen.
Careful not to trip over the various cords and wires, Yuma vigilantly tiptoed through the hazardous living room. Even before opening the paper thin screen that led into the kitchen, Yuma could hear the sounds of conversation.
"Yes," acknowledged a male voice from behind the screen. It wasn't one that Yuma recognized which led him to infer that this was his visitor. "I'm afraid that if the worker's strike continues like this, it might seriously affect the economy."
"One would hope not," said another voice from behind the curtain, that of Haru. "But we will have to see where this leads."
Pulling back the screen, Yuma was met with two sets of eyes. Naturally one pair belonged to his elderly grandmother, but the other pair was completely foreign to him. He stared at those eyes, taking in the deep blue hue that they offered. They were mystifying, to say the least.
In comparison to his eyes, most of this man's other features were bland. Loose flowing silver hair spilled over his shoulder while the purple-tinted bangs in the front hung well past his eyes. He wore an opulent blue blazer with a golden collar, buttoned up only near the top while the bottom was free-flowing to reveal a white under robe. Like Haru, the man sat with a cup of tea in hand, although it looked like it had barely been touched.
"Good evening…" Yuma greeted hesitantly, waving to the two adults. He put on a fake smile so as not to cause suspicion for his grandmother. After all, this man apparently knew more about Yuma than Yuma knew about him.
"Oh, you're here, Yuma!" Haru smiled, her frail hands holding out her cup for Yuma to see. "Would you like some tea, dear?"
Yuma politely refused with a "No, thank you."
Haru simply shrugged before motioning to the man sitting across from her at the kitchen table.
"Oh, pardon my manners," she chuckled. "Old age will do that to a woman. Here's your guest, Yuma."
Haru scrutinized the man across from her before her face turned red from embarrassment.
"I'm sorry," she asked for forgiveness. "What did you say your name was again?"
"You may call me V," the man patiently replied. He smiled at Haru before taking another slow sip of his tea.
"Oh, that's right," Haru laughed, thumping her forehead lightly as though it was supposed to be ingrained into her mind after thirty minutes of minimal conversation.
She stood up from the table, finishing the last of her tea before putting the cup in the sink. Then she walked to the screen door and passed Yuma on her way out.
"I'll just let you two boys get down to business," she said as she left the room, leaving the two strangers in utter silence.
"I don't mean to be rude," Yuma finally said after what seemed like a minute of complete silence in the house, "but do I know you?"
"You do not," V shook his head. "But I had to pretend that you did to deliver my message to you."
"Your message?" reiterated Yuma. "What would that be?"
"You're a duelist right?" V asked, finishing off the remains of his tea before placing his cup into the sink and rinsing out the inside.
"Huh? That's right."
"Then I believe I have a proposition for you."
V turned off the water from the running sink so that Yuma could clearly hear the offer.
Five minutes later, Yuma and V were standing outside in the boy's backyard under the beautiful cover of the starry sky. Attached to each of their arms were their D-Pads.
Yuma was particularly enthralled by V's futuristic looking D-Pad with the infinity symbol marked on the back. Unfortunately, V burst Yuma's bubble by telling him that it was a custom-made version that wasn't obtainable in any store or market.
Only one spectator was awake in the Tsukumo house to watch this particular event between the two transpire. Naturally, that one spectator was also the one that never slept: Astral.
"Remind me again why you're doing this," he asked Yuma.
"I don't really know myself," Yuma admitted. "But this guy said he had some information that could be useful to me. I don't know what that means, but I'm always up for a duel, especially if he came all this way just to meet with me."
"Well, it is your decision and I will leave you to it," Astral nodded. "Just be careful."
"It's lovely, isn't it?" said the voice from the opposite side of the dueling field.
Yuma looked over to V only to see the man motion to the sky. The boy followed the motion only to see the stars in the sky.
"What am I supposed to be looking at?" Yuma inquired, cupping his hands around his eyes like makeshift binoculars.
"The stars and the sky, in the little picture," V explained. "But the big picture is space. Don't you ever wonder what it'd be like to go up there and explore it? They say that it's the final frontier…"
"I thought that was just the name of that old television show," Yuma shrugged.
"It's more than just that. But I don't expect many people to understand.
"Space is a rarely seen destination that can transport us anywhere in the galaxy or to any dimension. It truly is our future as much as it is a frontier, but not the final one I'm sure. There are a vast amount of different locations that could open up if we search for them…Search like my father had…"
He stopped his monologue and looked at Yuma, forgetting his worries of the past, if only for one duel.
"Enough about that," he continued, his smile returning. "Shall we begin?"
"I thought you'd never ask!" Yuma grinned, ripping the D-Gazer from his waist belt and placing it over his eye.
In a similar fashion to Kaito and Gauche, Yuma noticed a green marking appear that covered some of V's left eye.
Could he possibly have some special affiliation with Kaito and Gauche? Yuma thought before shaking the idea as he drew five cards.
As V did the same, both looked at each other with anxious eyes.
"Duel!" they shouted together.
Yuma Tsukumo – 8000 LP
V – 8000 LP
"Let's commence, Yuma Tsukumo," started V, his hair lightly swaying to one side. "If you don't mind, I'll begin this duel."
Yuma raised an eyebrow, but nodded. He even extended his arm out, revealing an empty palm in a gesture that mimicked "after you."
"You're too kind," V smiled, although the words sounded a tad impassive. "It's my turn. Draw!"
He picked up the top card of his deck before quickly snagging one from his hand. The motion was so lithe, so immediate, that Yuma questioned if V had even read the card, let alone saw what it was, before he played it.
"Since I control no monsters, I'm able to instantly Special Summon my Solar Wind Jammer from my hand!" V announced as he slapped the card in the center space of his bionic D-Pad.
Rather than forward, Yuma's gaze was directed to the sky as he noticed something floating from above through his peripheral vision. Almost like a floating pirate ship, a hovering purple vessel bobbed up and down in the lonely sky. Horizontally on both sides of the purple spacecraft appeared to be three ecru-colored sails that unfolded one at a time, revealing that they were actually solar panels. (800 ATK)
"A Level 5 monster so quickly," grunted Yuma, his gaze fixated on the spaceship.
"And on top of that," Astral added, "V is still able to Normal Summon another monster if he chooses. Keep on your toes, Yuma."
"Right," nodded the boy.
"Naturally there's a cost attached to being able to summon a monster of this Level with such ease," V continued as though Yuma's words had never been spoken. "To wit, the base ATK and DEF scores of my monster are now cut in half."
Two of the panels on both sides of the monster retracted inside, leaving only one panel per side. (800 – 400 ATK)
"Furthermore, I will also summon Planet Pathfinder!"
As the man placed the card on his D-Pad, the image on the card came to life. Leaping from the card was an exact replica of the famous Mars expedition rover. Six red wheels propelled the vehicle forward as it fell to the ground. (1000 ATK)
"Tch…he's summoned two monsters at once," Yuma frowned.
"However, the Levels of each are dissimilar," observed Astral. "Could this also be part of his plan?"
"Planet Pathfinder's effect activates," V said while a teal-coated card slipped out of his deck. "By Tributing itself, I'm able to add one Field Spell from my deck to my hand."
As its owner retrieved his new card, Planet Pathfinder started to fade. Within a few seconds, it was nothing more than golden motes of lingering light.
The man with the green D-Gazer tattoo looked at the Field Spell silently, as if debating to play it. He gave a quick sigh before remembering his mission.
"If a monster with 1000 or less ATK points is sent to the Graveyard during my turn," V explained while lifting a card, "I can use the effect of my Sounding Rocket to automatically Special Summon it to the field!"
A thin, silvery rocket descended from the sky suddenly. An immense burst of flame emitting from the motor of the missile caused sweat to drip down Yuma's neck. The sharp, triangular nose cone of the rocket pointed upward, gleaming in the ever-fading light as the base of the craft finally hit the ground, extinguishing the flame altogether. (1000 ATK)
Once again, the Levels of his monsters don't match, thought Astral, narrowing his eyes. His strategy seems so calculated, but so inaccurate at the same time…
"Don't worry, Astral," Yuma grinned, turning back to his ghostly friend. He flicked his nose with his thumb coolly and gave a reassuring nod. "There's nothing he can do that I don't have a plan for!"
Astral stared at Yuma with a straight face before giving in to the boy's optimism. The ethereal being smiled and nodded, putting his trust in his companion.
"I use my Field Spell Card," said the voice on the opposite side of the playing field.
Yuma looked back just in time to see a slot in V's Duel Disk open up. A card was forcibly jammed inside that slot before it pulled itself back into the Duel Disk.
"Activate, Wormhole Macrocosm!"
No sooner had V finished stating his Field Spell than the landscape around the two competitors started to alter. Feeling something weird from below, Yuma looked down to see that his feet seemed to be floating in midair. He shrieked as he realized that he was floating above a vast quantity of luminescent stars and planets surrounding his body.
"W-we're in space," he gasped in awe before clutching his neck with both hands as though he were choking. "And I didn't bring a space suit!"
"Didn't I already explain this to you during our duel against Kaito?" sighed an exasperated Astral, vividly remembering Yuma's foolish antics.
"O-oh, yeah…That did happen, didn't it?" recalled the boy as he stared off into the space created by V's Field Spell.
"Yuma Tsukumo," addressed V formally, waiting for Yuma's gaze before he continued. "See those over there?"
He lifted a slender finger and pointed at a black hole orbiting a beautifully azure-tinged planet.
"Yeah, it's Neptune," responded Yuma densely. "Is there something interesting about it?"
"I was referring to the wormhole," V dispassionately corrected. "If you were curious as to what my Wormhole Macrocosm does, I'll inform you."
He pointed to another wormhole that opened up in the middle of the duel field suddenly. Although it had quite a massive pull, V's monsters remained immobile.
"Once per turn, the first time either of us Normal Summons or Flip Summons a monster on our respective turns, that monster is instantly banished. However, after that occurs, we can then Special Summon one monster from our hands with a lower Level to replace that monster. Do you understand?"
Yuma slowly gave a nod, thinking the whole thing over.
"So, if I summon a Level 4 monster," he asked for clarification, "I'll automatically lose it, but then I can summon another monster from my hand so long as it's Level is 3 or lower?"
Yuma furrowed his brow and looked at the five cards he was holding. They were alright at best, and the inclusion of the Field Spell didn't help.
"In addition," continued the silver-haired sage, "I will activate my Tannhäuser Gate!"
A Spell with Solar Wind Jammer and Planet Pathfinder on the artwork materialized in front of V.
"Tannhäuser Gate is a Spell that's activated by selecting two monsters with 1000 or less ATK of the same Type…"
He quickly motioned to Sounding Rocket and Solar Wind Jammer.
"After that occurs, I can make each monster's Level the combined Level of the two! Therefore, I will now modify the Levels of my two monsters to make both of them Level 9!"
Yuma's D-Gazer buzzed as two captions appeared under each monster which revealed their star amounts in Levels. Four more stars were added to Solar Wind Jammer's caption while five were added to Sounding Rocket's, giving them each a total of nine.
"So this was his aim!" gaped Yuma as he swallowed audibly.
"Could this man be going for a Rank 9 Xyz Summon?" Astral asked in a dubious tone of voice. For someone's erratic strategy to extend so far and be so flawless...It was truly amazing.
"I overlay my Level 9 Sounding Rocket and Solar Wind Jammer," shouted V, "to construct the overlay network! Xyz Summon!"
Two orbs of light came from V's futuristic monsters as they danced across the sky, occasionally winding and twisting together in the ascension. When they had reached their destination, they became one single ray of light so bright that it threatened to put the sun out of business.
"Appear now!" V yelled from below as he lifted a card upward. "Number 9…"
The new, sun-like ball of light rotated slowly as five growths revealed themselves just as leisurely. Yuma's eyes widened as he watched five solar panels, each one a gloomy gray color, extend one-hundred feet from the sun that held them all together. It appeared that the panels ran on solar energy because they each began to light up a faint orange color as the heat flowed through them and activated each one. A mechanical chamber then appeared, surrounding the sun and connecting the solar panels. Near the top of the chamber was a pinkish-purple "09". (2800 ATK)
"Canopy Star – Dyson Sphere!"
"That card…" Astral stuttered.
"A Number!" whispered Yuma, taken aback by every aspect of the intimidating machine. "And it's enormous! But just what does it do?"
"That will be explained shortly," V replied. "I'm sure of it…Until then, I'm going to end my turn by setting this facedown."
A card appeared at the man's feet as the owner slid it into his D-Pad.
V's words went in one of Yuma's ears and out the other. He couldn't be bothered to shift his focus from the gargantuan piece of machinery orbiting above his head. Surely it looked normal enough, but something that required that much effort to summon had to be bad news…
"Yuma," Astral said, trying to get his friend's mind back in the game. "Yuma!"
"W-what?" responded the dazed teen.
"Certainly that Number monster is wielding a special ability that V will inevitably utilize in this duel, but we need to focus on winning at this point. You can't allow yourself to become frightened of that monster."
"You think I'm scared?" scoffed Yuma, although his shaky voice was a dead giveaway. It also didn't help when his voice cracked as he said the final word.
"Whether you are or aren't, you must find a way to conquer Dyson Sphere," Astral reminded him. "And you can't do that if you don't have your mind set on this duel."
"I know that much," Yuma replied before giving Astral a small smile. He muttered under his breath, "Thanks for the pep talk."
"You're welcome," Astral said, smiling back. "Now let's get ready to take down that Number monster!"
"Okay!" Yuma concurred. "It's my turn! Draw!"
Yuma's body did a hasty twirl as he whipped the top card off his deck. He grinned as he saw what it was.
"Yes!" he cheered as he allowed Astral to see what it was. "Look! It's Kuribolt! With him, I can detach both overlay units from Dyson Sphere instantly! In short, we won't have to deal with the effect that the monster has!"
"That may be true," Astral thought aloud, "however, you're still faced with the issue of this Wormhole Macrocosm Field Spell. If you wish to summon Kuribolt, you must first sacrifice one of your stronger monsters."
"Oh yeah, that's right…" recalled Yuma, biting his lip as he reviewed his hand. Aside from Kuribolt, his only other monsters were Gagaga Kaiser and Grandran.
Alright, he thought to himself. Which of these should I summon? Grandran has no ATK points, but he has a useful ability. On the other hand, Gagaga Kaiser can't attack unless I have another Gagaga monster, but he has 1800 ATK…
"Wormhole Macrocosm," Astral commented aloud, interrupted Yuma's deliberation.
"Huh?" asked the boy. "What about it?"
"This Field is quite powerful," Astral stated. "But it also has a weakness…"
"A weakness?" Yuma said, looking from Gagaga Kaiser to Grandran. Thinking back to what V said, he understood Astral's words, his eyes widening. "So you're saying…"
Astral grinned and closed his eyes.
So he's figured it out so easily. Perhaps he's learned all he can from me.
"Thank you, Astral…" he chuckled before picking up one card from his hand. "Alright…I summon Gagaga Kaiser in Attack Position!"
The blue-haired emperor of the Gagaga monsters materialized in front of Yuma. He shifted his staff with the Gagaga insignia at the tip to his left hand while he dusted himself off with his right hand. (1800 ATK)
"Due to Wormhole Macrocosm, Gagaga Kaiser is now banished from your field," V called out.
He and Yuma watched as a ripple in the space field opened up beneath Gagaga Kaiser. The emperor tried to run, but the overwhelming gravitational force of the wormhole dragged him into the unknown.
"That may be," grimaced Yuma as he watched his monster perish, "however, I can still replace him with another monster in hand! Come out, Kuribolt!"
The adorable black ball of electricity bounced up and down as its card was played. Wiggling its metal tail, it began to chant "Kuri, Kuri, Kuri!" (300 ATK)
"And now," continued Yuma, "I will now activate Kuribolt's special ability which allows me to detach the two overlay units on your Dyson Sphere and turn them into Kuribolt Tokens!"
V watched stoically as Kuribolt shot a burst of electricity from its lightning-shaped growth upward into Dyson Sphere's atmosphere. The bolt broke up a bit as it exited the atmosphere, but was powerful enough to retrieve the two overlay units. Kuribolt cheered joyously as it was joined by into two perfect copies of itself. (300 ATK x 2)
"Finally," Yuma smirked as he took another card from his hand, "I'll activate Minimum Guts!"
As he inserted his Spell Card into his D-Pad, Yuma's two Kuribolt Tokens were sucked up by twin tornados that disappeared soon after.
"This card can only be activated by sacrificing two Level 1 monsters," Yuma explained to a quiet, but attentive V. "After doing that, the ATK score of one monster you control drops to 0! And it doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out which one I'm choosing!"
V careened his neck upward just in time to see the lights on his monster's multiple solar panels dim. The lights on each of the five panels started to go out, one at a time. It would have been beautiful if the monster itself wasn't so alarming. (2800 – 0 ATK)
"Moreover," Yuma added, noticing V's eyes move back to him, "once Kuribolt destroys Dyson Sphere in battle, you'll receive damage equal to the original ATK of your monster!"
"To summarize," Astral calculated, "if this attack connects, V will take 3100 points of damage."
"Awesome!" Yuma's fingers turned into a fist and he pumped it in the air. "Kattobingu, Kuribolt! Go and attack Dyson Sphere with Kuribolt Volt!"
"K-Kattobingu…" V stammered, his eyes moving downward to the starry ground his created by his Spell. "That word…"
His eye twitched as a fragmented memory unveiled itself in his mind.
A knock on the door disrupted Dr. Faker's incessant analytical typing and research. Annoyed, the blond man ordered his colleague, Byron Arclight, to investigate and answer the call. Acquiescent and willing, Byron did as he was told.
Sauntering to the door and clicking the sequence on the security pad next to the entrance, the man with the braided ponytail hairstyle opened the way for a newcomer.
"Tsukumo, Kazuma, I presume?" Byron asked with a smile.
"That's right!" nodded the dark-haired man, grabbing his beige pith helmet with a tanned hand. Whistling as he surveyed his new surroundings, Kazuma needed a moment to take in the various technological advancements in. "This is some place you have here."
"Thank you," Byron stated, his smile never leaving his face. "Please, come in."
Byron moved out of the doorway, allowing Kazuma to enter the area. The latter man had to admit that this research facility was nicer than any he'd ever seen before. He looked around, admiring the various machines that did specific things that he could only have imagined possible. His attention was caught when he noticed the large, virtual globe in the middle of the room.
"Check that out…" he muttered under his breath, taking a step towards it.
While doing so, Byron called out to his good friend and associate.
He waited until the busy man had time to turn around to complete introductions.
"This is Kazuma Tsukumo," he finished, pointing to the adventurer. "He's the one who can show us the way to the other dimension!"
Dr. Faker arose from his seat slowly. Walking down the marble staircase that led to his work station, the exhausted man extended his hand for Kazuma to shake.
"So you're the one who can aid me in my research," he said.
"I hope so," laughed Kazuma, shaking Dr. Faker's hand. Upon letting go, he pointed to the virtual map. "May I?"
"Be my guest," Dr. Faker acknowledged.
Kazuma nodded and walked over to the map. Looking at it for a couple seconds, Kazuma decided to try a different approach by walking through the map. Being virtual and all, he had no problem doing so.
"I just don't understand," Dr. Faker sighed, resting a tired hand on Byron's shoulder. "After all this research, we should have been able to pinpoint to location in which the 21st dimension would show up by now."
"I know it's frustrating, Faker," Byron replied, his eyes saddened. "However, we can't give up. We're so close to cracking the code."
Kazuma, who had overheard the conversation, bobbed his head up and down.
"That's right," he concurred. "No matter how bleak a situation seems, you just have to remember one thing: Kattobingu."
"Kattobingu?" repeated a voice from above, one which belonged to neither Dr. Faker nor Byron.
Kazuma lifted his head to see a young, white-haired teenager, around the age of fifteen, working at a machine. He had been so quiet that his presence had been forgotten or unacknowledged to both Dr. Faker and Kazuma.
"How rude of me to skip your introduction," said an embarrassed Byron, rubbing the nape of his neck. "Kazuma Tsukumo, this is my eldest son, Christopher."
"What's Kattobingu?" inquired the boy named Christopher.
"That's an easy one, Christopher," Kazuma grinned, giving the child a thumbs-up and a white smile. "It means having the strength to challenge yourself in tough times. If you can keep challenging yourself, no matter how bad a situation looks, you can overcome it!"
The reverie dissolved in his brain as his subconscious came back to reality. He reopened his eyes to see Kuribolt's lightning attack being swallowed by a gaping black hole. Remembering what had occurred in the previous two turns, he looked back to Yuma.
"What!?" Yuma shouted in confusion.
V smiled with a fist over his heart. He looked up at Dyson Sphere and spoke.
"Whenever Dyson Sphere is attacked while it has overlay units attached to it, that attack is then negated."
"What're you talking about?" Yuma squabbled. "Kuribolt detached both overlay units from Dyson Sphere at the beginning of the turn!"
"Look again," V replied, pointing to his monster.
Sure enough, the yellow-orange lights powering the gigantic monster had been relit. All five panels oozed the same hue as they rotated around the cosmic creature.
Yuma opened his mouth to speak, but he couldn't find the right words to express his wonderment. V, realizing this, elaborated.
"If Dyson Sphere is targeted for an attack while it has no overlay units," he claimed while reaching into his Graveyard and pulling out two cards, "I can select two monsters in my Graveyard and reattach them to Dyson Sphere as overlay units."
He flipped over Planet Pathfinder and Solar Wind Jammer for Yuma to see before sliding both underneath his ace monster.
"Therefore, once the Battle Step begins, Dyson Sphere will still have its overlay units, and as a result, the ability to negate all attacks waged on it!"
"No way…" gawped Yuma, his jaw becoming increasingly lower to the ground.
That monster can negate all attacks it receives and replenish its overlay units…Astral thought, his mouth also open, albeit more in amazement than fear. Can we defeat that type of power?
"Well, it's still your turn," V calmly affirmed. "Or are you done?"
"I…I…" spluttered Yuma as his fingers involuntarily jittered, "I'll set one card facedown…"
A concealed card appeared directly behind Kuribolt.
"And then I'll end my…"
"Yuma, wait!" pleaded Astral. "It's still your Main Phase, which means Kuribolt can use its effect once more."
Yuma looked at his Kuribolt, uncertain if he should risk such a feat. After all, both Kuribolt Tokens would also be placed in Attack Position, and on top of that, Dyson Sphere could regenerate the overlay units if need be. Nevertheless…
"I'll…now use Kuribolt's effect to recreate two Kuribolt Tokens," murmured Yuma, his voice sounding weak.
Kuribolt once again shot up a beam of lightning into the sky. Sliding down the thin, but sturdy bolt were two more Kuribolt Tokens, each of which sat on either side of the original. (300 ATK x 2)
That's it, Yuma Astral said, offering a tiny smile. Don't give up hope.
At the same time, Dyson Sphere's panels were completely illuminated once more. The five boards on the colossal structure started to slowly rotate as the energy from the overlay units fully revitalized the power of the machine. (0 – 2800 ATK)
"It's my turn!" V shouted. "Draw!"
Picking up another card, he lifted his head upward toward his pride and joy. Raising a fist to the clouds, he quickly brought it down and released his balled fingers, showing Kuribolt his palm.
"I send my Dyson Sphere to attack your non-Token Kuribolt!"
V's cry rang in the air, resonating throughout the playing field as Dyson Sphere followed the command. Instantly, a murky white hole appeared in the middle of the starry sky. A tiny blast shot from the opening in the atmosphere, followed by two more, which turned into three more. Before long, there were fifteen separate shots of white headed at Kuribolt at a breakneck pace.
Yuma stood tall and clenched his fists. Although the destructive power of V's Number was frightening, he would no longer allow it to implant fear into his heart. Before the blasts connected, Yuma hit a button on his D-Pad.
"Trap card, open! Damage Direction!"
Kuribolt closed its eyes, bracing itself for the impact that never came. Although it didn't see the event transpire, it could hear a second Kuribolt, the one to the right of it, being annihilated to smithereens as the particle blasts decimated it. Likewise, Yuma's screaming voice sounded in the background, causing the electrified ball of black to turn its head around.
Lying on the ground, battered and bruised, was Yuma. He placed his hands on the ground and arched his feet, getting in a position that looked like he was about to do a push-up before lifting his body off the ground. Heavy breathing came from his mouth as he took the steps forward that were necessary to reach the position he was in pre-assault.
"D-due to Damage Direction," he wheezed, his heart beating monotonously in his chest, "I was able to redirect your attack to one of my Kuribolt Tokens instead."
"Why would you bother?" inquired V. "The amount of damage you collect will still be the same because all of your monsters are in Attack Position."
"That may be," grinned Yuma, "but by doing that, Damage Direction's secondary effect activates! In conclusion, I'm now able to draw two new cards, one for each increment of 1000 damage that I took!"
Yuma touched the top two cards of his deck and pulled them out of his D-Pad simultaneously.
V frowned, but shrugged. He reached for the card he had pulled at the beginning of the turn and entered it into his device.
"It looks like I can profit off your trick too," he told Yuma as a Spell Card with a picture of four moons orbiting around Earth digitalized. "Quick-Play, activate! Rotational Shift!"
"What is this?" gulped Yuma, knowing he would regret asking.
"Rotational Shift may only be activated when I declare an attack on a monster and that monster isn't destroyed by battle," V made clear. "If a situation like this occurs, my Dyson Sphere can attack that original target again, at the price of half of its ATK points during damage calculation."
"Again?" screamed Yuma.
Dyson Sphere answered for V. While momentarily dropping to 1400 ATK, another white hole formed in the middle of the arena. Like a bad case of déjà vu, Yuma watched as another volley of bursts impaled Kuribolt, this time connecting with the target and thoroughly destroying it. A wave of nausea passed over the child as he clutched his stomach in agony, dropping to his knees helplessly.
As Dyson Sphere's ATK score returned to normal, V looked at Yuma for a moment before succumbing to boredom. He instead focused on the two cards in his hand, but found no more interest in them than he did in the thirteen-year old's despair.
"I shall end my turn."
Yuma – 4400 LP
V – 8000 LP
"Ugh…" Yuma moaned, crinkling the four cards he was holding as his fists trembled unsteadily. "The power of his Number monster is unbelievably strong. Damn…"
"Even so, it must have a weakness," assessed Astral. He looked at the two cards that Yuma had picked up through the effect of Damage Direction. His curiosity was piqued as he recognized just what that weakness was. "There!"
"Where?" Yuma asked, his neck whipping left and right quickly. "What are you looking at?"
"That card is just what we needed to combat V's Number 9," Astral declared, pointing to the card.
Yuma narrowed his eyes before it became clear to him.
"I see now!" he understood as he looked at it. "Dyson Sphere might be impervious to the attacks of my monsters, but when it comes to Spells and Traps, it falls short!"
"Precisely," agreed Astral.
With a newfound determination, Yuma took a few deep breaths and fought through the pain. Although his legs were practically screaming out in misery, he once more rose to his wobbly feet.
"Get ready to say goodbye to that Dyson Sphere!" Yuma smirked, even mustering up the strength to give a chuckle. "My turn! Draw!"
As his hand size increased to five, Yuma dropped it back down to four by playing the card that Astral had motioned to earlier. Once he placed the card in his D-Pad, an oversized rocket launcher materialized in front of him. Yuma picked it up while keeping his opponent informed.
"This right here is called Hope Buster and when played, I'm allowed to destroy the monster on your side of the field with the lowest ATK. Then, it'll subtract your life points by the ATK of that monster! And since you're only in control of one monster, I'll give you a hint at who it's gonna be!"
Yuma pulled the trigger on his grandiose firearm, releasing the rocket inside the weapon. The missile shot straight forward, never once veering off course. When it was only inches in front of V's face, it curved upward towards Dyson Sphere. Although it was practically invisible once it escaped Earth's atmosphere, there was a miniature explosion from above that sent down a shower of mechanical parts like a fireworks display.
"I did it!" Yuma chirped, his usual optimism returning. "Take that, Dyson Sphere!"
"You did it, alright," V announced, his life points remaining untouched. The green tinged strand of hair in between his eyes swayed to the left as he picked up a card from his D-Pad and showed it to Yuma.
"B-but…" Yuma stumbled, noticing that this revealed card was a monster.
"You're wondering when I played Satellite Station, aren't you?" V asked, not waiting for an answer. "You see, whenever a card on my side of the field would be destroyed by a card effect, Satellite Station can instantly be Special Summoned from my hand. And with no ATK points, it then became the substitute target of your Hope Buster."
Yuma's saucer-like eyes watched as a shower of golden space debris came down to the ground. Scattered remnants of the contraption – broken solar panels, busted airlock modules, and twisted antennae, among other things – coated the battleground, none of which belonged to Dyson Sphere.
"Crap," swore Yuma through gritted teeth. Frustration contorted his face into an irritated grimace. "I was so close."
"You'll have to do better than that to pass this test," V said.
"Test?" parroted Yuma. "What does that mean?"
V remained silent.
"I asked you what you meant by that!" Yuma repeated. "What kind of test is this supposed to be?"
"It's still your turn," claimed V, deliberately ignoring Yuma's queries.
Though he was still interested in what V had meant, he assumed that he would find out soon enough. Until then, he would take Astral's advice about not letting his mind stray too far from the duel.
"What should I do? What should I do?" Yuma thought aloud, his eyes transfixed on Grandran. Unfortunately for him, it was his only remaining monster.
Astral floated behind Yuma's shoulder, peering over to get a better glimpse at the boy's hand. His suspicion amplified when he saw a card with a picture of Kuribolt on it. Oddly enough, he had never seen it before, let alone Yuma use it. As he silently read its effect, he smiled triumphantly.
"I set two facedowns!" he shouted, getting swept away by the prospect of dueling.
"You're not the one dueling here!" Yuma reminded him before looking back down at his hand. Noticing the two most recent cards that entered his hand through the effect of his Damage Direction, he understood suddenly.
Lifting both cards, he slid them neatly into his D-Pad before turning his Kuribolt Token sideways.
"Oh! I'll be placing two cards facedown and changing my Kuribolt Token to Defense Position!"
As the dark sphere oozing blue current gave its feet a rest and sat down (200 DEF), two reverse cards surfaced southward to it.
"And with that, my turn's finished!"
V looked at Yuma followed by Kuribolt before turning to his deck. He knew his opponent's plan even before his opponent. Calculations were the easy part; it was the waiting that was agonizing.
"In that case, it's my turn! Draw!"
After picking up another card, which he didn't bother to look at, he gestured to the imitation Token with two fingers.
"Dyson Sphere…attack that Kuribolt Token! White Hole Warp!"
Without warning, a gaping white hole emerged in front of the Kuribolt Token's carroty feet. The monster bent down to get a better look before a blast of light shot upward from the portal. Preempting such a situation, Yuma hastily slapped a button on his Duel Disk before the blast had time to mar Kuribolt.
"Trap Card, go! High Boltage!"
A glowing red bubble shot from the card and encased Kuribolt inside. Ricocheting off the insides of the sparkling sphere were bolts of high-powered lightning, each of which bounced off the thin walls and ended up hitting Kuribolt. However, instead of injuring the creature, the shockwaves the circular critter endured caused his size to grow tenfold.
"Due to High Boltage," smirked a prideful Yuma, "whenever a Kuribolt or Kuribolt Token is targeted for an attack…The attacking monster is not only banished from the field, but you'll lose life points equal to half the total of that banished monster's ATK!"
"Come again?" asked an astounded V.
"Strike back, Kuribolt!" Yuma ordered. "Kuribolt Volt!"
The Kuriboh family member gave a loud, almost intimidating "Kuri, Kuri" noise before breaking out of its confining shelter. With an overpowering sense of control for its powers, Kuribolt charged up enough static electricity to power Dyson Sphere by itself before shooting it at the aforesaid monster.
V frowned, not wanting to use his Trap so early. Nevertheless, it appeared that it was necessary.
"Trap activate!" he announced. "Space Gate!"
A large ring of blue light materialized around High Boltage. It started to shrink in size quickly, squeezing Yuma's Trap until it exploded.
"What?" gaped the hopeless teenager.
"Space Gate is a Number-exclusive card that can only be activated when a Trap Card is activated while I control Dyson Sphere," V claimed. "When used, your Trap is negated and destroyed."
"What?" Astral gasped. "A Number-exclusive Trap?"
"And since High Boltage is no longer effective, Dyson Sphere's attack continues!" V shouted.
The Kuribolt Token returned to its normal self right before it was hit by one of the white-hole blasts. It exploded without much opposition.
"Tch…he destroyed my monster," Yuma pouted.
"However, that's just what we needed to happen," Astral added.
Yuma questioned this before his eyes fell back on his other Trap Card. "Oh, yeah!"
His facedown card moved face-up upon the push of a button.
"Hmm?" V wondered, reading the name of the card. "Feather of Garakarasu?"
"Right," confirmed Yuma. "It's activated when one of my monsters is destroyed by battle. Since that's the case, I get to play one Garakarasu from my deck!"
Two ebony feathers fell from the sky. V looked up to see the jet black crow that dropped them before the feathered flier perched itself on Yuma's shoulder. (1500 ATK)
"And then Garakarasu's effect activates! When it's Special Summoned, I can destroy one Field Spell on the field!"
V glowered as his Field Spell Zone was forced open. He bitterly removed the card inside it and sent it to his cemetery. As he did, the scenery returned to Yuma's backyard.
"Turn end," finished the man.
Yuma nodded, looking back down to his hand before making another move. Only two cards remained, Grandran and Wonder Wand.
I can call out Utopia, Yuma calculated, but it won't do me much good since it won't be powerful enough to defeat V's Dyson Sphere. Additionally, since neither of my monsters are Spellcaster-Types, I can't activate Wonder Wand either. What should I do?
"Yuma," Astral said.
The boy turned his head to the ghostly emissary.
"Let's defeat Dyson Sphere."
"Easier said than done," huffed Yuma. "That thing can negate all attacks that it receives."
"Hmph…I seem to recall you telling me that if you can't beat them, join them," Astral recounted.
"Join them?" Yuma questioned, looking down at his deck. Although he wished to know what Astral was referring to, he didn't want to keep his opponent waiting.
"It's my turn! I draw!"
Adding a third card to his hand, Ganbara Knight, Yuma reconsidered his options.
"Join them…" he thought aloud, thinking back to what Astral had said. "How am I supposed to…"
Yuma slowly began to comprehend the words as he looked to Ganbara Knight and then to Grandran.
Is this what he was talking about? Only on way to find out…
"I summon…Ganbara Knight in Attack Position!"
The armored warrior fell from the sky onto the ground, placing its shields in front of itself to protect Yuma. (0 ATK)
"Two Level 4 monsters," V noticed. "Are you planning to perform an Xyz Summon?"
"Not just yet," Yuma called out. "Firstly, since you control an Xyz Monster, I can also Special Summon Grandran from my hand!"
The soil in front of Yuma elevated before a monster burst from the ground. Coated in thin squares of silver metal, a brown, rocky animal-esque creature leapt onto the field, landing perfectly on its four thin limbs. Its emerald eyes stared lifelessly. (0 ATK)
"So it's a triple overlay you're after," smirked V. "However, if you're thinking about summoning a monster with more ATK than Dyson Sphere, I would think again."
"Huh? Why's that?"
"Dyson Sphere has an effect which allows it to detach one overlay unit in order to attack you directly if you have a monster on your field with higher ATK than it," V clarified.
"But Dyson Sphere has no more overlay units," contested Yuma.
"That is true," V agreed. "However, I still have two cards left in my hand."
Yuma's brow furrowed at the sound of V's words. Like he had said, Dyson Sphere was out of useable overlay units…However, with two cards in his hand, and one more coming up during his draw phase, it wasn't completely impossible for V to restock them.
"Wait a minute…" Yuma hesitated, looking at his opponent.
"Is something wrong?" said V, his white hair moving with the nighttime wind.
"Why did you tell me about Dyson Sphere's additional effect?" he inquired. "You could have kept it a secret and used it against me later."
"That's true also," V responded, this time with a tad bit of a smirk. "However, there's something that I need to see beforehand."
"I take it that something is a secret," pouted Yuma, returning his attention back to the duel. "Well, it's like my buddy Astral said…If you can't beat 'em, join 'em!"
All three of Yuma's monsters became compressed into balls of light, two of which were brown and one which was violet. Each one soared into a spiraling red vortex in the sky.
V watched in surprise. It was evident in his appearance that he wasn't expecting a non-Number Xyz to be played.
Descending down from the portal as though there was an invisible stairway was a new fighter. Presumably human, the strongman was adorned in a bright array of colors, all of which seemed to blend well. Blue boots complimented the man's tasset-covered cuirass whilst matching gold knee pads and shoulder pads kept the samurai relatively safe. A flowing red scarf drifted loosely around the man's neck while a robe of the same color fluttered around its waist. Unsheathing two katanas from their holders, the white-masked man struck a rather heroic pose. (2500 ATK)
"I overlay my Level 4 Grandran, Ganbara Knight, and Garakarasu in order to Xyz Summon my One-Eyed Skill Gainer!" orated Yuma.
"It required three monsters and still doesn't have enough ATK to take on Dyson Sphere?" V gazed. "Why bother to summon such a monster at all?"
"It's not the strength of this monster that counts," grinned Yuma. "It's how well the effect is used! Show him, Skill Gainer!"
The samurai-style monster nodded and raised one of its katanas. A dandelion-colored orb of light flew towards the weapon before One-Eyed Skill Gainer absorbed it. Then it gave a fearsome slash of its katana, sending a jolt of red lightning at Dyson Sphere.
"What's happening?" V gasped, looking up to see the lightning hitting the sunny center of his most powerful monster.
"This is the power of my Skill Gainer!" Yuma cheerfully announced. "By using an overlay unit, it can take your monsters name and effect for its own!"
Yuma's forlorn opponent watched as particles of red dust fell from Dyson Sphere. Filling the nighttime sky with a magnificent panorama, the red sparkles of powder all fell on One-Eyed Skill Gainer. Like with the overlay unit, the monster absorbed them.
Yuma took a second to take in his work before a fat grin crossed his face. He jumped up and down lightheartedly, pumping his fists in the air in a triumphant display.
"I did it!" he shouted, turning to Astral and bouncing up and down. "I found a way past V's Dyson Sphere! Now that Skill Gainer has its effect, it also cannot be attacked successfully!"
"That's not all," Astral included. "Since Dyson Sphere's ATK exceeds that of Skill Gainer, our monster is also awarded a direct attack once per turn."
"Oh, yeah!" exclaimed an overzealous Yuma. "I forgot about that!"
Playfully rolling his eyes, Astral gave Yuma a command. "Now then, Yuma…Use Skill Gainer's effect to attack directly!"
"Yeah!" Yuma obeyed, sending Grandran to the Graveyard. "I detach one overlay unit from my monster in order to attack you directly with Dark Blade!"
With Dyson Sphere resting up in the cosmos, One-Eyed Skill Gainer had a clear shot at V. Leaping upward and executing a perfect midair somersault, Skill Gainer landed on its knee pad directly in front of V. With a few mad slashes of its weapon, it sliced at the white-haired man, sending him back three feet.
"Alright!" applauded Yuma. "I managed to deal big damage to his life points!"
Although V's demeanor remained mostly calm, an irritated undertone overtook his words.
"Are you done with your turn?"
"Oh, uhh…" Yuma looked down for a reminder of the last card in his hand. "Yes, my turn's over."
Yuma – 4400 LP
V – 5500 LP
Silently drawing his card, V looked at his hand of three. Choosing one, he slid it into his D-Pad's Spell/Trap Zone before nodding to Yuma.
"My turn is over."
"So quickly?" Yuma said, his face a little confused. "Well then it's my turn!"
After making his draw, a beaming Yuma nearly bent it in all directions in a rush to activate it.
"I use Xyz Treasure!"
A Spell appeared in front of him as V's D-Gazer tattoo informed him of the effect.
"I see…So you get two draws now because there are two Xyz Monsters on the field."
"You got it!" Yuma confirmed, sending his Xyz Treasure to the Graveyard before drawing twice. "Hmm…"
"Be wary, Yuma," Astral cautioned. "One-Eyed Skill Gainer can attack directly once again, but it only has one overlay unit left."
"No biggie," Yuma shrugged in a relaxed tone. "It will still have Dyson Sphere's effect which can replenish overlay units from the Graveyard as a failsafe."
Astral said nothing more as he moved into the background of the duel.
Meanwhile in the foreground, Yuma discarded the final monster underneath his Xyz Monster.
"I will activate Skill Gainer's effect once again," Yuma declared. "Now it can attack you directly again!"
V glanced at his facedown card before returning his gaze to Yuma in a nanosecond.
"Go, Skill Gainer! Attack V directly again with Dark Blade!"
Skill Gainer's katana accumulated more red particles as the monster transferred the last of its winnings from Dyson Sphere to its weapon. Making a dash towards the unarmed man, Skill Gainer lifted both its blades in an attempt to slice V's body in an "X" formation.
Without speaking, V clicked a button on his D-Pad. In response, the card on his field rose.
"The One Crawling Into Hell?" said Yuma, reading the title of the card. "What an…interesting card name."
"It's activated when a monster you control that has 2000 or more ATK tries to strike me," V explained. "Now your attack is not only negated, but you'll lose damage equal to half the ATK of your battling monster!"
Yuma saw a wall of flame rise from the ground, protecting V from the twin bladed slash of Skill Gainer. Then the fire pushed itself forward, forcing Yuma's monster to beat a hasty retreat. The flames followed, but rather than targeting the Xyz Monster, circled around Yuma. He coughed as the resulting smoke filled his lungs and the burned his eyes.
"Now is your chance!" Yuma heard a voice cry.
Clearly it wasn't his own. He ruled V out as well, assuming that the man wouldn't give him any more advice. That only left…
He looked back through the flames to see the pale figure of Astral pointing to something. But what was it?
Yuma looked around him, seeing nothing particularly interesting, save for the ring of flames that ensnared him. The crackling of the fire blocked the child from hearing Astral's voice, much to his chagrin.
Realizing this, Astral acted quickly. He held his hand out to Yuma, pretending that he had three cards in it. Then he made a motion which implied that he was grabbing the middle card in his hand.
Yuma's baffled eyes failed to process what Astral's message was sending him. Getting annoyed with the charades game, he turned away from Astral and back to his hand.
Then he understood what the spirit was trying to tell him. He slapped his face with his palm, embarrassed to have missed such an obvious clue.
Looking over his shoulder and giving a thumbs-up to Astral, Yuma then took the middle card of his hand in both fingers and flipped it over.
"Because you negated my attack," he shouted at the top of his lungs, "I can activate my Quick-Play, Double or Nothing, which enables me to double the ATK score of my monster and attack one more time with it!"
"What did you say?" V gawped, his mouth wide open.
A blustering wind came down from the evergreen trees near Yuma's house, wiping away the ring of flame that threatened him. The breezy airstream wrapped itself around One-Eyed Skill Gainer like an outfit, empowering the warrior. (2500 – 5000 ATK)
"Furthermore," came Astral's voice clearly now, prompting Yuma to look back, "even though Skill Gainer has more ATK than Dyson Sphere now, its direct attack effect still remains until the End Phase!"
"No way!" Yuma gasped, a smile forming on his lips. "So you mean I can attack directly now?"
"Precisely!" Astral verified. "Now let's go!"
"Right! With Skill Gainer's second attack, I'll send it to you directly again!"
Remembering its last failed attempt at attacking, Skill Gainer instead sheathed one of its katanas while holding the other one steadily in its right hand. Without the need to close one of its eyes to aim better, the single-eyed warrior threw the blade at V. It virtually pierced his chest, causing him to fall onto his knees quaking.
Yuma wiped the sweat from his upper forehead and offered a look self-pride. Although Astral had been helping him, he felt relieved to know that he could still bring about a reversal.
"I end my turn like this."
Skill Gainer took its remaining katana in both hands and crouched down in a fighting stance. (5000 – 2500 ATK)
Yuma – 3150 LP
V – 500 LP
V's arms wobbled as he pushed against the ground to lift his body up. His legs gave out as he tried to stand.
"Hey, are you alright?" Yuma asked concernedly.
V remained silent, quietly summoning the necessary strength from within to stand back on his own two feet. His blurry eyes took a couple seconds to adjust as his brain mentally went through the same task.
After looking at the card intently, V placed it in his mechanical device gradually.
"I activate the Gravity Blaster Equip Spell."
Yuma's ears perked up as an ominous sound filled the sky. He gazed upward to see what appeared to be a three-dimensional pyramid in front of the Dyson Sphere's center. While it was originally empty, orange particles started to fill the geometric shape.
"What the heck's going on?"
"Gravity Blaster is an Equip Spell which awards Dyson Sphere 400 more ATK during each of my turns," V made clear.
To confirm V's statement, Yuma's D-Gazer reflected the change in power. (2800 – 3200 ATK)
"That was an unusual tactic," scrutinized Astral.
"Huh?" Yuma said. "How do you figure?"
"Dyson Sphere's second effect, which allows it to attack directly, is only available when V's monster has less ATK than a monster that you control," he simplified. "It seems to be somewhat counterproductive for V to increase the ATK of his monster."
"Oh, that's right," nodded Yuma. "And since Dyson Sphere doesn't have any overlay units, the choice seems even weirder."
"Correct. Watch out, Yuma."
V grinned as Yuma's conversation ended. He slowly lifted his arm and pointed an accusatory index finger at One-Eyed Skill Gainer.
"With Number 9: Canopy Star – Dyson Sphere, I attack your One-Eyed Skill Gainer now!"
"What?" gasped Yuma. "H-Hold on! Did you forget that since my Skill Gainer has all of Dyson Sphere's effects, it can also allow me to take two monsters from my Graveyard and attach them as overlay units?"
"No," V smirked. "No, I did not forget that."
Just as Yuma was reaching into his Graveyard to retrieve Kuribolt and Grandran, a white hole manifested itself in front of One-Eyed Skill Gainer. Instead of similar-colored rays of light shooting from it, one long strand of orange motes emerged. Right as it slinked out of the portal, it shot forward at the speed of light, ripping a hole in Skill Gainer's chest. The Xyz Monster grunted and fell down before vanishing.
"That's impossible…" Yuma refuted.
"Yes, it would be," V chuckled, "if I had not drawn my Gravity Blaster."
"Gravity Blaster?" repeated Yuma, looking at the Equip Spell.
"In addition to being able to faintly power up my Dyson Sphere, Gravity Blaster also gives it the ability to negate the effects of a monster that it battles! In other words, the effect of Dyson Sphere which your Skill Gainer had mimicked was negated!"
Yuma was speechless. Truth be told, One-Eyed Skill Gainer was his ace in the hole and he had too little cards to plan another counterstrike.
Needless to say, the situation was more than grim.
V's words slithered into Yuma's ear like a famished python. It was evident that this duel had become a case of do or die.
The man's smile disappeared altogether as he narrowed his eyes. He looked at Yuma with an emotionless face.
Show me it, Yuma…Show me that you can defeat Dyson Sphere and pass this test. Prove that me that you can take on the mission…
"With this, I end my turn."
Yuma – 2450 LP
V – 500 LP
"Shoot," complained Yuma. "Dyson Sphere is incredibly strong. It's virtually indestructible by battle and with Gravity Blaster equipped to it, it'll keep getting more powerful each turn."
"But it's not impossible to defeat," Astral assured. "There is a way within your deck, but it will take the right draw to unleash it."
"Can I draw it?" Yuma asked himself, looking at the pile of cards lying in his D-Pad. "Can I make that miracle happen?"
"Kattobingu," came a voice.
Yuma was surprised to see that it had not come from Astral, but yet from V. He looked up to face the royal blue of V's eyes.
"That's what he said, isn't it? Your father, Kazuma…"
"Y-you…You know about my dad?" Yuma interrogated.
V silently confirmed Yuma's question.
"Do you know where he is?" Hope was evident in the teenager's voice. "Do you know where I can find him?"
"I do not," V replied. "However…I know he is alive."
When Yuma looked into V's eyes, he could tell that the statement was completely true. This man, as strange as he was, appeared to be an honest soul. But why…Why was he telling him all of this?
"Dad…" Yuma breathed, clutching his pendant. "If you're still alive, then that means…"
Yuma thought back to a few days before the World Duel Carnival had commenced. Among the extensive list of reasons that he wanted to enter was the fact that he'd heard that one wish would be granted to the winner of the tournament, if it was humanly possible. He wasn't sure if his father was still alive or not at the time. It seemed like a long-shot to use his wish on that. But with this new information, he was sure. He was sure what his wish would be.
"Dad…" he said, moving his hand down to his deck. No, moving his hand down to his father's deck. And as long as he used the cards within it, he was certain that his father would still be alive, whether it was just in memory or not.
V dropped his head down, concealing his smile from Yuma. His heart was almost consumed with envy as he recalled the feeling of love for a father. He always felt love for his own father, but since the transformation, it was harder for him to give at times.
"If my father is still alive," Yuma spoke, his hand still on the Emperor's Key while one touched his deck, "then my Kattobingu will live on! Watch me, Dad! I'm gonna bring it to 'em!"
With a strong tug on the card, Yuma made his draw. And what luck it was that he managed to draw a rather helpful monster.
"It's here!" he clapped, taking another card in his hand and playing it beforehand. "But before I play him, I'll first summon my Goblindbergh!"
The red-orange biplane piloted by the goblin aviation-expert swooped down in front of Yuma, naturally towing one of its lead canisters behind it. (1400 ATK)
"Then, since Goblindbergh was Normal Summoned, I can also Special Summon one Level 4 monster from my hand! I choose my Gagaga Tactician!"
The canisters containing the monster broke apart, presenting a new monster. Like something out of a spy movie, the monster was clad in a tuxedo and black slacks. Attached to its ear was a headset remarkably similar to a Bluetooth device. Wireless communication devices doubled as cufflink sleeves. (1500 ATK)
At the same time, the sputtering noises from Goblindbergh's plane engines ceased altogether. (0 DEF)
"Now from my hand," declared Yuma, slipping the final card into his D-Pad, "I activate my Wonder Wand Equip Spell and hook it up to Gagaga Tactician!"
The undercover agent reached into his pocket and somehow produced Wonder Wand. (1500 – 2000 ATK)
With a gulp, Yuma elevated the Gagaga Tactician and Wonder Wand in his D-Pad and flashed them to V.
"By sending both Wonder Wand and the monster equipped with it to the Graveyard," Yuma enlightened, "I can draw two new cards…"
"So this is what it's come to," V stated.
"Betting the duel on the outcome of two draws," Astral interjected.
Yuma gave his pendant one more touch before sending the two cards away. With a hopeful look, he set two fingers on his deck. Astral and V watched fixedly as Yuma shouted at the top of his lungs.
With nothing more, Yuma picked up the top two cards of his deck. He looked carefully at each one. Both were Spells, which was actually more of a relief to Yuma since he had already used his Normal Summon for the turn.
Yuma looked from one to the other, reading each of their effects as though they were new.
There's gotta be something that I can do…he thought. Think, think…
"Wait a minute…"
Looking at the latter drawn Spell, Yuma's mind was made up. Exhibiting all of his teeth, his lips opened to display a winning smile.
V smiled back, hoping that the boy had a plan. He was hoping, more than anything, that Yuma could prove himself worthy…
"Because I just sent a Gagaga monster to the Graveyard," Yuma publicized, "I can Special Summon it again with this!"
Gagaga Revenge appeared on his side of the field. With its activation came a wooden coffin in front of Yuma. The top slid right off as Gagaga Tactician arose from the casket. (1500 ATK)
"Next, since Gagaga Tactician was Special Summoned by the effect of a Gagaga card, I can choose one card on the field and negate its effect for the remainder of the turn!"
Yuma pointed to V's side of the field. Chains sprouted from the ground, wrapping around Gravity Blaster.
"You negated Gravity Blaster when you could have negated Dyson Sphere," Astral informed him.
"Trust me, Astral," Yuma smirked. "I've got this.
"Now that I've got two Level 4 monsters, I can construct the overlay network! I offer Gagaga Tactician and Goblindbergh to summon my Number 39: Utopia!"
As Yuma's monsters came together in the starry portal, Utopia's extended wings carried it out. Wielding its sharpened blade in one hand and keeping the other hand on its shield, the Number monster was truly prepared for anything. Red eyes stared upward towards Dyson Sphere, the monster understanding its mission. (2500 – 2800 ATK)
"By the by, Gagaga Revenge gives all my Xyz Monsters 300 more ATK when the Gagaga monster that's Special Summoned with it is used for an Xyz Summon!" Yuma enlightened.
"That's all good and well," V acquiesced, "however, that's not enough to stop my Dyson Sphere with an ATK of 3200."
"Actually," laughed Yuma, "I was getting to that part."
V looked interested at Yuma's statement. With one card in his hand, could it possibly be true?
"I send Number 39: Utopia to attack your Dyson Sphere now!" Yuma commanded.
"What?" Astral and V spoke in unison. It was evident that neither had the foggiest idea as to what Yuma was plotting.
Nevertheless, despite the confusion, Utopia obeyed. Laying both hands on the hilt of its sword, the golden warrior propelled itself upward using the strength of its white wings. It didn't ease Astral's uncertainty when he saw that Utopia was no bigger than a star in the sky compared to Dyson Sphere. Even so, he had faith in Yuma's crazy plan.
"Gravity Blaster's effect negates the effect of a monster that battles it," Yuma remembered. "That's why I negated it!"
"It won't matter," sighed V. "I activate the effect of my Dyson Sphere to reattach two monsters as overlay units!"
"Not yet!" interrupted Yuma. "I activate the effect of my Utopia to negate its own attack!"
"Why do such a thing?" Astral hollered.
"Spell activate!" Yuma yelled in response. "Flash Effect!"
A bright light opened up the night sky, clearly revealing the battling forms of Utopia and Dyson Sphere. The light seemed to be attracted to Yuma's monster as it drew nearer and nearer to Utopia.
V had never heard of the card before, but thanks to Yuma's explanation, he probably wouldn't forget it anytime soon.
"Due to my Flash Effect, when a monster activates its effect…"
He pointed to Utopia rather than Dyson Sphere.
"I can give that monster 800 more ATK during this Battle Phase! And in addition, all monster effects are negated!"
"So that was your aim with disabling Gravity Blaster," V smiled, speaking quietly under his breath. "Congratulations, Yuma Tsukumo…You pass."
The shining light reached Utopia, manifesting itself inside the blade of his sword. (2800 – 3600 ATK) Then with a formidable swing of the weapon, Utopia flew into the center of Dyson Sphere where the sun-like structure was located. Cutting the arrangement of brightness in twain, Utopia retreated and flew back to Yuma. While doing so, the inside of Dyson Sphere started to break apart before it spread to the outside of the monster. The solar panels began to explode as the power reaching the monster failed. Utopia flew back with nothing but a destructive explosion chasing it.
"I…I did it," Yuma incredulously noted. "I…defeated Dyson Sphere!"
With that, he gave another victory jump in the air before performing an array of backflips, dances, and various other acrobatic executions.
Yuma – 2450 LP
V – 100 LP
"Oh, it's your…" Yuma began, looking back to V before stopping his sentence short.
The twenty-something year old young adult had already folded his D-Pad back up and deactivated his D-Gazer tattoo.
"Is something wrong?" inquired Yuma, removing his own D-Gazer and D-Pad and setting them back on their respective slots on his belt. "You still had life points left."
"I'm aware," V said, although the words were more calm than they were rude or arrogant. "I don't wish to continue though, if that's quite alright with you."
"Y-yeah, that's fine," Yuma shrugged. "But can I ask why you stopped the duel?"
"Because I saw what I needed to see. I received the answer to the question I was searching for."
"Oh, yeah," Yuma said, recalling what V said earlier. "You said you were testing me, right? What did you mean?"
V's half-smile dropped, replacing itself with a regretful look.
"There is a man who's a participant in the World Duel Carnival. He goes by the name of Tron."
"Tron?" Yuma asked, looking to Astral. The entity was just as in the dark.
"I know his heart is in the right place," V whispered, "but his ambitions are maniacal and dangerous. I can't stop him myself…"
"Huh? Why not?" Yuma pressed on.
V looked towards the ground, leaving Yuma with a guilty feeling for asking the question.
"I'm sorry," he apologized. "I didn't mean to pry."
"Please," begged V, "stop Tron's ambitions at all costs. I fear the worst if he isn't stopped."
"B-But why are you telling me all this? Why do you want my help?"
"Admittedly, I wasn't sure about enlisting you at first," V confessed. "However, I've seen you remove the darkness from Ryoga Kamishiro's heart. I have hopes that you could do the same thing with Tron."
"Tron must have a Numbers," Astral articulated.
"As well, the fact that you were able to defeat the nearly indestructible Dyson Sphere tells me that you're a very innovative duelist. I know that if there's anyone that can help me, Yuma Tsukumo, it's you."
"Well if that's the case, then I'll definitely help you in your goal, V," Yuma smiled, his decision set in stone. "It's the least I can do to aid you after you told me about my father."
"Kazuma Tsukumo…He was a good man, Yuma. Don't ever forget that."
"I promise that I won't," Yuma said, clutching his pendant for strength.
"Tron will be at the finals for sure," V warned. "I expect that you will make it that far as well. Then, just maybe…"
"I'll do everything that I can," vowed Yuma. "I promise."
"Just like Kazuma," smiled V as a dark portal appeared underneath him. His forehead blazed with a blue insignia which temporarily restricted Yuma's vision.
When Yuma could see again, V had left the scene, taking his belongings with him.
"Tron," Yuma muttered. "And Dr. Faker…Heh, looks like the list is growing for the people we have to stop."
"But if it's you and me, Yuma," Astral confirmed, "we can defeat them both."
"Yeah!" Yuma agreed. He took one last look around his yard, as though expecting V would appear again, before walking back into his house. Closing the door behind him, Yuma quietly made his way up to the attic where his makeshift room was.
Astral viewed the boy open a trunk next to his hammock that contained a small stack of cards. He watched Yuma close the trunk after taking out the cards and messily throwing them on the ground.
"What are you up to, Yuma?"
"It's no doubt that Tron and Dr. Faker, whoever they are, are good adversaries," Yuma felt. "I have to modify my deck if I want to take people of their strength on."
He took his own deck out of his pocket and separated all of the cards on the opposite side of the floor. Looking from pile to pile, he started to rebuild his deck. With Astral's coaching and keen eye for strategy, Yuma had no doubt that he could beat those opposing him. And he would, not only for himself, but for V as well.
And if with this newly reconstructed deck he won the tournament, he hoped deep down that his wish would finally be granted.
A portal opened up on the ground directly outside the front door of the entrance into the Tron Family house. Rising from the opening was the silver-haired gentleman that had dueled Yuma only minutes earlier.
V touched his forehead as soon as he was completely free of the portal's grasp and the circle beneath him vanished instantly when the blue symbol disappeared.
Reaching out his hand to touch the doorknob, V found himself in the midst of a mental conundrum. He felt more than a little guilty for throwing Tron under the bus and enlisting Yuma to help his plans, but at the same time…
He shook his head, wondering if his idea was for the best. He wanted to go back to that time so badly, the time when everything seemed to go perfect. The time before Dr. Faker came along…
Slowly giving the handle a twist, he couldn't tell who he felt worse for at the moment. There was Yuma, who had no become part of something that was clearly bigger than he was.
And on the other hand, there was Tron. Surely, Tron had intentions and ambitions as well, some of which even coincided with V's. However, the means to carry them out were not ones that V necessarily wanted to happen. Especially with what Tron had in mind.
Opening the entrance to the housing area, V immediately noticed something wrong. The first clue came from the array of broken dishes that cluttered the ground. Secondly, minor slashes and holes were made in the window curtains.
"Just what went on here?" V quietly asked no one in particular.
As he carefully stepped over the porcelain shrapnel resting on the living room floor, he found the answer to the question sitting on the couch, fuming with one fist literally inside a couch cushion.
"IV?" V narrowed his eyes, trying to adjust to the darkness of the room. He could barely make out the spiked appeared of what seemed to be hair. "Is that you?"
No response came.
V took two more steps, putting a hand on the silent seventeen-year old's shoulder.
"IV?" he asked again, only to have his hand brutally slapped away by the raging Duel Champion of the Asia circuit. Instinctively, V backed away, but kept silent now.
"How could you?" spat a clearly angry IV. "How could you and Tron do this?"
"What?" V stammered, taken aback by the sudden questioning. He had done nothing bad to IV that he could recall, during the World Duel Carnival or otherwise. "I don't know what you're…"
"Don't feed me that shit," IV snarled, now rising from the leather sofa. He jerked his arm to the right, irritably tossing the cushion aside. It hit the wall with enough force to relieve it of the stuffing inside.
"Please, IV," implored V. "I really have no idea what you mean. Explain yourself."
"I had one of my fan service duels today," IV spoke immediately after V finished. "Before it was over, Tron contacted me and said that Ryoga was in the Heartland Mall. Well, guess who waited there for three hours looking for him?"
"I-I had no idea," V stared in the darkness.
"That's a load of bull," IV snapped. "I know that you and Tron have been hiding something from me and it's about damn time that I know what it is. Why don't you want me to duel against Ryoga, V? Or should I say why doesn't Tron want me to?"
"If I knew, I would tell you," V spoke the truth. "And please, IV, don't speak ill of Tron. He has a plan, and we all have to play our parts for it to go off without a hitch. If one of us acts out of line and doesn't act in accordance to that plan…"
"I won't be anyone's pawn!" IV disrupted. "I refuse to be! I work for me alone and my duel with Ryoga is my own business! How could it possibly throw off Tron's plan?"
V actually knew the answer to that question, but decided to hold his tongue. He was afraid the words he'd exchanged with Yuma that night were already enough to set Tron's plan back. He couldn't afford to leak anymore information without consent.
"When you're done," V calmly uttered, "would you clean those broken plates up off the floor? I can take responsibility for the curtains if Tron asks, but I don't think he'd tolerate this type of behavior."
Now it was IV's turn to bask in the silence.
V took the non-responsive attitude as a yes to IV cleaning the mess he had created. With that, he proceeded to walk to his room. With all that he'd been faced with during the day, he figured that a good night's sleep could certainly do some wonders.
"Wait, Chris," came a voice from behind him.
V turned around to see IV. Thankfully, it appeared that most of the younger brother's wrath had dissipated after their conversation and IV's little bout of blowing off steam. Nevertheless, V knew that IV was prone to quick temper changes. It was one of the reasons why the man always chose his words carefully.
Chris…V thought, almost forgetting that his Roman numeral-inspired moniker was not God-given. Coupled with the fact that IV almost never called him by his true name, V decided to give his full attention to his younger brother.
"If you…" IV paused for a second as though he was trying to find the proper way to word his terminology. "If Tron is planning something with Ryoga, you would tell me, right?"
V closed his eyes, finding the question to be rather difficult to answer. Loyalty was one of the few aspects V possessed that he hadn't sold out when he vowed vengeance against Dr. Faker. Unfortunately, it was at a time like this when the line between his loyalties was drawn, dividing his trust into different segments.
"Please, IV," he pleaded. "I've had a long day and I can't be bothered to answer such questions."
IV was clearly unsatisfied by the response, his mouth shut in defiance. Through the dark, he purple eyes shot a quick dirty glimpse in V's direction.
V sighed and made his way to his bedroom. Thankfully for the exhausted man, it was the room closest to the front door. As he was about to go inside and find his way into the dream land where he could fantasize and imagine his family as one again, he gave one more fleeting glance in IV's direction.
"Don't over-concern yourself with Tron's plan, Thomas," he ordered. "If it all works out as planned, you'll have your rematch with Ryoga. That much I can assure you…"
As V entered his bedroom and shut the door behind him, he couldn't help but think of the various other things that would occur if Tron's plan succeeded.
None of the thoughts were happy ones.
New/Anime Cards Shown In This Chapter –
Number 9: Canopy Star – Dyson Sphere (Xyz Monster)
2800 ATK/3000 DEF
Effect: 2 Level 9 Monsters
Once per Battle Step, when this card is targeted for an attack, while it has an Xyz Material(s): Negate that attack. When this card is targeted for an attack, while it controls no Xyz Materials: You can target 2 monsters in your Graveyard; attach those targets to this card as Xyz Materials. During your Main Phase 1, if your opponent controls a monster whose ATK is higher than this card: You can detach 1 Xyz Material from this card; this turn, this card can attack your opponent directly.
One-Eyed Skill Gainer (Xyz Monster)
2500 ATK/2600 DEF
Effect: 3 Level 4 Monsters
You can detach 1 Xyz Material from this card to target 1 face-up Xyz Monster your opponent controls; this card's name becomes that target's name, and it gains that target's effect(s). This effect can only be activated once while this card is face-up on the field.
0 ATK/1400 DEF
Effect: If your opponent controls an Xyz Monster, you can Special Summon this card in face-up Attack Position (from your hand).
Planet Pathfinder (Monster)
1000 ATK/1000 DEF
Effect: You can Tribute this card; add 1 Field Spell Card from your Deck to your hand.
Solar Wind Jammer (Monster)
800 ATK/2400 DEF
Effect: If you control no monsters, you can Special Summon this card (from your hand), but its original ATK and DEF are halved. During your Standby Phase: Increase this card's Level by 1. There can only be 1 "Solar Wind Jammer" face-up on the field.
Gravity Blaster (Spell)
Image: Number 9: Canopy Star – Dyson Sphere aiming a triangular particle accelerator at an unseen target.
Effect: Equip only to a Machine-Type monster. Once per turn: You can have the equipped monster gain 400 ATK. If the equipped monster battles an opponent's monster, the opponent's monster's effect(s) on the field is negated during the Battle Phase only.
Tannhäuser Gate (Spell)
Image: Planet Pathfinder driving down a strip of light into the Tannhäuser Gate while Solar Wind Jammers flies into it.
Effect: Target 2 face-up monsters you control with 1000 or less ATK and the same Type; the Level of each target becomes equal to their combined original Levels.
Note: The above seven cards can be found in the Abyss Rising Booster Pack. It is currently slated for release in the United States in November, 2012.
The One Crawling Into Hell (Trap)
Image: A female sorceress casting a purple hex on Laval Lancelord.
Effect: When an opponent's monster with 2000 or more ATK declares an attack: Negate that attack, and inflict damage to your opponent equal to half that monster's ATK.
Note: This card was first used by V in Episode 53 of "Yu-Gi-Oh! ZeXal." Creative credit goes to the writers of that episode.
Space Gate (Trap)
Image: Dyson Sphere creating a dimensional space gate to warp matter to and fro.
Effect: If you control a face-up "Number 9: Canopy Star – Dyson Sphere," when your opponent activates a Trap Card: Negate the activation, and if you do, destroy that card.
Note: This card was first used by V in Episode 56 of "Yu-Gi-Oh! ZeXal." Creative credit goes to the writers of that episode.
Xyz Treasure (Spell)
Image: A ghostly pirate ship docked in front of a treasure chest containing jewels and riches.
Effect: Draw 1 card for each Xyz Monster on the field.
Note: This card was first used by Yuma Tsukumo in Episode 65 of "Yu-Gi-Oh! ZeXal." Creative credit goes to the writers of that episode.
Flash Effect (Spell)
Image: A brightly lit gateway opening up and expelling the darkness of the night.
Effect: During the Battle Phase, when a monster effect is activated on the field: Target that monster; during this Battle Phase, it gains 800 ATK, but the effects of all Effect Monsters on the field are negated.
Note: This card was first used by Yuma Tsukumo in Episode 72 of "Yu-Gi-Oh! ZeXal." Creative credit goes to the writers of that episode.
Winged Beast/Level 4/Effect/DARK
1500 ATK/1000 DEF
Effect: When this card is Special Summoned: You can target 1 face-up Field Spell Card on the field; destroy that target.
Feather of Garakarasu (Trap Card)
Image: One single black feather that's fallen from Garakarasu.
Effect: When a monster you control is destroyed by battle: Special Summon 1 "Garakarasu" from your Deck.
Note: The above two cards were first used by Yuma Tsukumo in Rank 12 of the "Yu-Gi-Oh! ZeXal" Manga. Creative credit goes to the writers of that chapter.
Note 2: The Attribute, Type, and DEF of Garakarasu were never specified. The given statistics are inferences and will appear as such if the card shows up in later chapters.
Gagaga Tactician (Monster)
1500 ATK/1500 DEF
Effect: When this card is Special Summoned by the effect of a "Gagaga" card: You can target 1 face-up card on the field; until the End Phase, that target's effect(s) is negated.
Satellite Station (Monster)
0 ATK/0 DEF
Effect: When a monster you control would be destroyed by a card effect: You can Special Summon this card from your hand. Once per turn: This card cannot be destroyed by battle.
Sounding Rocket (Monster)
1000 ATK/300 DEF
Effect: During either player's turn, in which a monster with 1000 or less ATK is sent to your Graveyard: You can Special Summon this card (from your hand). The effect of "Sounding Rocket" can only be used once per turn.
Rotational Shift (Spell)
Image: Four full moons orbiting around Earth's axis.
Effect: When a monster you control attacks an opponent's monster and that monster is not destroyed by battle: Your attacking monster can attack one more time in a row with its ATK halved during damage calculation only.
Wormhole Macrocosm (Spell)
Image: A spaceship flying through the galaxy while numerous wormholes open up to the side of it.
Effect: Once per turn, when the turn player Normal Summons or Flip Summons a monster: Banish it. Then, that player can Special Summon 1 monster from their hand with a lower Level than that banished monster.
High Boltage (Trap)
Image: An electrified Kuribolt shooting a rod of lightning from its forehead at a chain link fence.
Effect: When a face-up "Kuribolt" or "Kuribolt Token" you control is targeted for an attack: Target the attacking monster; banish it, and inflict damage to your opponent equal to half of that banished monster's ATK.
Note: The above six cards first debuted in this chapter.
Author's Note: Noticing that Yuma has been feeling down since his battle against Kaito the day before, Kotori takes it upon herself to cheer up Yuma the following morning. Luckily for her, a surprise encounter with a past duelist just might do the trick for Yuma. Could the secret to Yuma's happiness be in this boy's duel? Find out next time!