Act Three: Island Finale
16:52 – Master Emerald shrine, Angel Island
With a flash of green light, the four Mobians appeared on the surface of Angel Island. Sonic took a deep breath in whilst surveying his surroundings. "Angel Island. What a peaceful place."
"No time for messing around!" snapped Shadow. Suddenly, a voice cut through the air. "Sonic!" Standing on the Master Emerald shrine, with all seven Chaos Emeralds on their pedestals, was Nazo, a confident smirk on his face as he looked at the new arrivals. The gang ran to the altar.
"Nazo!" shouted Sonic, the anger plain to see in the azure hedgehogs face.
"You're too late Sonic. I have all the Chaos Emeralds and the Master Emerald on the altar" taunted Nazo. "With these elements, I will annihilate this planet. I am pure Chaos!" Lightning flashed as dark ominous clouds began to gather overhead. Nazo's gaze drifted from the blue hero to the black anti-hero. "Sonic. Shadow. Everyone and everything you know is coming to an end. Perfect Chaos is nothing compared to me. I'll show you the true power of Chaos!"
Bright streaks of Chaos energy shot out from Emerald to Emerald, effectively penning Nazo within the altar. A bright light erupted from the Master Emerald, as Nazo started to glow red. Before the eyes of the four companions, the two quills on Nazo's back changed into four in an X shape. The quills on his head shifted, two pointing down on either side of the hedgehog's face, while the remaining four grew slightly in length. Gold rings, similar to Shadow's, appeared on Nazo's wrists and ankles. All the while, Nazo's evil laugh echoed across the island and down to the planet's surface.
The sea below Angel Island was stirred up by the Chaos energy, sending mild shockwaves across Station Square. People ran for shelter as buildings shook. Huddles together within the city stood Amy Rose and Cream, both terrified by the earthquakes and the manic laughter ringing through the air.
As quickly as the storm had built up, it died down again. Standing on the altar was a different Nazo. His pale fur was now a dark maroon. His once blue eyes had turned yellow, the iris' glowing red. His voice, now darker and more sinister, seemed to hiss as he spoke.
"At last. My transformation is complete" The new Nazo pointed a finger at his foes. "For the last moments of your lives, you may refer to me as Perfect Nazo!" Sonic was suitably unimpressed.
"I've had enough!" shouted the hedgehog, as he burst into Super Form. "Just who do you think you are anyway?" With that he flew at Nazo, moving before Knuckles could grab him.
"Hey, calm down. Don't do it Sonic!" yelled the echidna, but his pleas fell on deaf ears. Super Sonic flew through the air, fist raised. He swung with all his might and connected.
Nazo didn't even flinch. Unable to comprehend what just happened, Sonic swung a powerful kick, connecting with thin air as Perfect Nazo disappeared. The maroon villain reappeared thirty feet higher up in the air. Sonic quickly brought himself level with his enemy.
"You're gonna pay for this!" Sonic ducked into a super charged spin dash and hurtled towards Nazo. Nazo stopped the still spinning Sonic with one hand, a cocky smile on his face. A blast of black energy shot out the hand, blasting Sonic back to earth. Sonic, bloodied and bruised, could almost sense the ground rushing up to meet him…
…when a gloved black hand caught his wrist, stopping his freefall by a couple of meters. Shadow glared at his rival, hovering himself on his jet shoes.
"Your weakness disgusts me!" he sneered as he dropped Sonic to the ground. He then continued his ascent, coming level with Nazo. "I'll show you the ultimate power!" Super Shadow burst into life, firing a huge energy blast at Nazo. With one hand, Nazo swatted the blast to the side, exploding like a golden firework. Shadow growled with frustration before launching himself forward. "Chaos…Control!" Nazo didn't move, but his eyes flashed.
Shadow was frozen in midair, his own Chaos Control being slowed down by Nazo's unnatural powers. Holding one hand out, Nazo fired a black energy blast at point blank, sending Shadow crashing into the ground. Nazo just laughed at how easily he was throwing the two hedgehogs around.
On the ground, amidst the rubble and dust, Shadow's eyes began to glow a sinister red. The two golden energy rings on his wrists popped off, unleashing his true power. With a Chaos fuelled roar, Shadow's inner Chaos energy burst to the surface, his golden aura replaced by an angry red. Knuckles looked on, the worry evident in his voice.
"There's something wrong with Shadow!" Shadow's evil laugh rang out as he continued to power up.
"Shadow! Have you lost your mind?" shouted the battered Sonic. Shadow didn't reply.
"Chaos…" he disappeared, reappearing a second later, his hand clamped round Nazo's throat, slamming the maroon villain into the ground. "…BLAST!" The scarlet energy blast moved out with blinding speed, engulfing nearly the whole island. When it subsided, Shadow was covered in sweat, doubled over at the bottom of a huge crater. The two golden energy rings reappeared on his wrists as he caught his breath.
"Damn!" His voice seemed to be barely a whisper. A familiar figure appeared beside him, showing no damage from the Chaos Blast. Shadow face showed utter terror as he looked into the yellow eyes of Nazo. "Who…who are you?!" was all Shadow could say. Nazo grinned.
"I'm the Ultimate Lifeform!" A swift kick sent Shadow flying up, where Nazo met him and pummelled him back to earth. The dazed black hedgehog crashed into Sonic, who had no time to react. The ground exploded and the rubble buried the two hedgehogs. Nazo's chilling laugh filled the air. "Don't tell me this is the planets only line of defense" he mocked. "I didn't think it would be this easy!!"
Tails turned to Knuckles, disbelief registering on the young fox's face.
"We can't let him get away with this, can we?" Knuckles looked down at the ground. "Even my attacks aren't enough." He glared up at Nazo. "I can't believe that bastard!"
Under the rubble from Shadow's crash landing, images of friends flash across both hedgehogs' unconscious minds. Sonic saw Tails, Knuckles, Cream and Amy. Rouge and E123 Omega flashed in front of Shadow. Then another image flashed, simultaneously across both minds. Tikal, the ancient echidna princess, stood before the Master Emerald altar, speaking the sacred chant used to empower the Emerald.
"The servers are the Seven Chaos. Chaos is power, power enriched by the heart. The user is the one who unifies the Chaos…" Two pairs of eyes opened, two pairs of irises flashed as the next level of Chaos was unleashed.
Above ground, Knuckles' natural link to the Emeralds screamed in his head, causing him to turn to the altar.
"Those Chaos Emeralds…" As the Master Emerald flashed like a heartbeat, the seven Chaos Emeralds, one by one, glowed white and doubled in size. Super Emeralds. A blast of bright white energy erupted from the pile of rubble, taking Nazo by surprise. Hovering within the light were two hedgehogs, both glowing in a series of rapidly changing colours. Two very pissed off hedgehogs.
"Hmph. You actually thought you could defeat me, by transforming into a monster?" Sonic's voice sounded like there were three of him, all speaking slightly out of turn, creating a harmonic echoing effect. Nazo was nearly speechless.
"Behold, the Ultimate Power!" Shadow's voice resonated in the same way. Knuckles and Tails looked on at Hyper Sonic and Hyper Shadow. The cocky grins appeared on the hyper charged hedgehogs' faces. Sonic spoke first.
"There's only one way to go. Ready?"
"Ok!" answered Shadow. Then, as one voice, both hedgehogs called out
The white light grew in intensity, causing Tails Knuckles and Nazo to shield their eyes. When the light died, a new hedgehog drifted down to the ground, Chaos energy rippling around him. His fur was pure white, including the chest patch. His shoes looked like Sonic's, but had Shadow's Chaos jets on the soles. The hedgehog had eight upturned quills on his head, the lower two on either side having Shadow's distinctive red streaks. Nazo seemed to be utterly confused.
"Who are you?" he demanded. "Are you Sonic or Shadow?" The new hedgehog pointed at Nazo, a familiar grin on his lips. One word came out.
"Shadic!" Knuckles and Tails looked on in wonder and disbelief. Shadic? Had Sonic and Shadow really merged to form this hyper hedgehog? Nazo asked himself the same question, then smiled eerily.
"You can pull whatever trick you like. It will only delay the destruction of this planet." Nazo turned around, aiming a negative Chaos energy blast at the planet's surface.
Out of nowhere, a flying kick from Shadic collided with Nazo, sending the maroon hedgehog hurtling through two rock formations, ending up embedded in a cliff face. Pulling himself out, Nazo teleported back to the battlefield, much more wary of his new foe. This is impossible, he thought, staring at Shadic.
As if answering Nazo's silent query, Shadic started charging his Chaos powers, white lightning bouncing off the multi-coloured aura. Nazo also started charging his negative Chaos powers, black lightning sparking off a purple aura. The two hedgehogs rushed at each other, moving quicker than Knuckles or Tails could follow. Punches and kicks were expertly blocked by both warriors, the crashing of limbs echoing like thunder across the island. Station Square had come to a stand still as every citizen watched a big screen reporting a disturbance from Angel Island.
Finding himself knocked back, Shadic powered up. The full power of the Super Emeralds flowed through his veins and the white hedgehog flew at Nazo, a speed-of-sound fist colliding with the villain's cheek. Nazo was sent flying backwards, followed by Shadic. A swift upwards kick sent Nazo careering into open space. Shadic joined him, to find a black energy bolt heading towards him.
"Chaos Wind!" Shadic's own attack neutralised that of Nazo, and the two hyper charged hedgehogs continued the fight.
Nazo was slammed into an asteroid, breaking through and ending up on another one beyond. Teleporting back to Shadic, he took the hero by surprise, a double axe-handle sending Shadic crashing into the surface of the moon. Recovering quickly, Shadic ducked into a spin dash, Shadic caught Nazo in the midriff, carrying his foe back towards earth. Shadic increased his speed before kicking Nazo straight back to earth. Despite the searing heat as he passed the atmosphere, Nazo managed to right himself, and landed on two feet. Shadic quickly reappeared on solid ground, no worse for wear from the inter-stellar battle.
Nazo was breathing hard, having been pushed to his limits by Hyper Shadic. "Well…" he breathed raggedly, "you two are harder to kill than I thought. I don't know how you managed to pull off that unification trick with Chaos Control, but I must admit; it was highly impressive." Shadic rubbed his nose, a cocky smile cemented on his face. Nazo continued. "But tell me, Hyper Shadic. How many rings do you have left after that little performance?" The reality struck Shadic like a fist to the gut. If he ran out of rings, he's transform back to regular Shadic, or even lose the unification altogether. Nazo laughed at the fear in Shadic's eye.
"I'm also impressed with your ability to turn Chaos Emeralds into Super Emeralds, something even I can't do. However," he chuckled as his palms glowed black, "this also works in my favour. With the Super Emeralds, I'll absorb the new reservoir of negative Chaos energy!" Seven dark orbs emitted from the Super Emeralds, and formed a new aura around Nazo. The new negative power coursed through him. The gold rings on his arms and legs began to glow before turning black. Black electricity darted from his spines, as Hyper Perfect Nazo stood before the heroes.
"Know this, Shadic. Tails. Knuckles" growled Nazo, looking at each of his foes in turn. "The three of you combined could not match the amount of negative Chaos energy I now possess." A sly smile crept onto Nazo's lips. "Before I destroy you all, I shall leave you with my final explanation." Looking up to the sky, Nazo began his justification.
"You see, being born of negative energy makes me naturally inclined towards attaining as much power as possible. Soon I shall have more energy than any star. Than any universe…" Nazo looked back at the heroes, the wistful expression replaced with one of disgust. "But there is one entity whose power I shall never be able to surpass." Knuckles glanced past Nazo, who nodded. "That's right Knuckles. Your Master Emerald. A gift from the gods themselves; a source of infinite power. No matter how much energy I absorb, I will never reach a level of infinity. So, the only solution is to detonate the planet, causing the Master Emerald to explode, shattering it into millions of fragments and scattering them across the cosmos, ensuring their power can never be harnessed again." Nazo clenched his fists, the anger burning in his yellow eyes. "I will not be damned to eternal subordination towards that rock!"
"No way!" shouted Shadic, his own fists clenched ready for the next round. Nazo simply chuckled.
"Of course, you will resist. So let's see how many rings you have left to stop THIS!" Nazo teleported into the air, both hands holding a raging ball of negative Chaos energy. Bringing them together above his head, a gigantic ball of energy began to form, dwarfing the hyper hedgehog who was its master.
Shadic, still stood on terra firma, held both arms out to the side, and called upon the positive power of Chaos. Across the globe, golden power rings began to float into the air, drawn towards Angel Island like a magnet. The golden energy sparked in and around Shadic as he gathered more energy than either Sonic or Shadow had ever possessed before.
While the two warriors built their attacks, people around the world looked to the skies. Knuckles and Tails looked on, the anxiety painted clearly on their faces. Amy held onto Cream. Rouge and Omega looked on. The Chaotix detectives watched the skies. Even Eggman and Metal Sonic stopped to watch the final battle. Gradually, with increasing frequency, people and Mobians held their own energy rings to the sky. Each ring added its power to Shadic, each ring another symbol of hope against the destructive powers of Nazo. The world united as one.
In sync with each other, the colossal negative energy ball hurtled down while Shadic's hyper blast fired upwards. The two energies met, each trying to out do the other. Shadic increased his power output, the energy sounding like an explosion as it left his palms. Nazo's ball began to move away, shunted back by Shadic's increasing power. Nazo fired four smaller blasts into the gargantuan, its power now beginning to overwhelm Shadic. The ball crept closer and closer to the surface. Shadic closed is eyes and gritted his teeth, putting everything he had into stopping the ball of destruction.
Shadic's two most trustworthy allies came to his rescue. With a roar, Knuckles allowed the power of the Super Emeralds to wash over him. An explosion of Chaos energy, and Hyper Knuckles stood glowing, his pink fur glowing with pure power. Tails let out a shout of his own, as the Super Emeralds turned his orange fur golden. His protective Flickies began to circle him. The glare on his face said Super Tails was ready.
The two newly transformed heroes shot into the sky, appearing behind Nazo. Shadic looked up in surprise to see his friends there, risking themselves to help him. Nazo, on the other hand, registered shock and fear. Tails grabbed hold of Knuckles wrist and span into a tornado of gold and pink, before launching the hyper echidna, fists first towards Nazo. With the maroon villains attention diverted, Shadic pumped one last blast of Chaos into his attack. The blast punched through Nazo's energy bomb, obliterating the build up of negative energy. Knuckles collided with Nazo, his momentum pushing the villain into the head of Shadic's attack. With a scream of pain, Nazo was carried away by the energy blast, past the atmosphere and into deep space.
"We did it!" exclaimed Tails. Before Shadic or Knuckles could reply, a swirling black void appeared in the sky above the island. Made of negative Chaos energy, it was a potential point of return for Nazo.
"What's that?" asked Knuckles anxiously. He glanced to Shadic, whose white coat faltered for a moment, temporarily flashing back to a dark blue colour. "Shadic!" The echidna was worried now. If the hyper hedgehog ran out of rings, the return of Nazo would be a disaster. Shadic didn't seem too concerned.
"Chaos…Control!" He disappeared from sight, heading into the void to finish off the threat once and for all.
Within the darkness of the void, Hyper Perfect Nazo woke up. Looking around, he couldn't quite believe his eyes.
"What…I'm alive? Those Emeralds proved to be more useful than I thought." A frown crept along his brow. "Damn. I suppose I'll just have to try to destroy the earth again."
With a blinding flash, Hyper Shadic suddenly appeared within the void, the dull Super Emeralds surrounding him. He motioned towards himself with two fingers.
"What are you doing?" asked Nazo, before he froze in place. The power of the Super Emeralds was drained from him, leaving him feeling like he'd been running for days. The seven orbs of energy filled each of the Emeralds. Then, with a resounding crash, they merged with Shadic.
The power radiating from the white hedgehog was unbelievable. His whole body glowed like a supernova as the full power, positive and negative blasted through him. Nazo, panting for air, formed a black energy blast in his hand, ready to attack.
"No. I won't let you…" His words were cut off, as the negative energy of the Chaos Emeralds was absorbed from him by Shadic, whose palm was now in front of the regular pale face of Nazo. Fear shone in his eyes, a feeling that the negative being had never felt before.
"No. You can't be doing this!" Without moving a muscle, a smiling Shadic let rip with a gigantic blast of white Chaos energy. With a scream, Nazo's form disintegrated. As Shadic continued the blast, the spirits of Sonic and Shadow stood alongside, each adding their own energy to the blast.
Back on the island, the swirling dark vortex exploded, white light being scattered in an arc from the explosion. Station Square erupted into cheers as the feeling of certain destruction lifted from the crowd. Everyone who had watched the fight from afar celebrated. Even Eggman nodded his approval. After all, if Nazo had destroyed the planet, what would there be for him to conquer?
Back on Angel Island, Knuckles and Tails were celebrating when movement behind them caught their eye. Spinning round, they saw a quick flash, followed by Sonic and Shadow being thrown apart as Hyper Shadic's rings finally ran out. Running over to Sonic, they helped the azure hero to his feet. With a beaming grin on his face, Sonic thumped fists with Knuckles and ruffled Tails hair.
"Thanks guys" said the blue hedgehog. Knuckles put his hands on his hips.
"What do you think friends are for?" he asked. A thumbs up from Sonic said more than words ever could.
Sonic then walked over to Shadow, who was brushing himself down. Looking at his number one rival, Sonic couldn't help but grin.
"Looks like we did it, Shad" said Sonic. Shadow closed his eyes, a small grin of his own never leaving his lips.
"Indeed we did, faker" he growled, before looking Sonic in the eye, a mischievous glint there that Sonic usually only saw when he looked in the mirror. "But now that we're apart again, I suppose I'll just have to whip your ass from here to the other side of the island." That, if possible, made Sonic's grin even bigger. He looked at Shadow, studying the black hedgehogs face for any signs of sarcasm. Finding none, Sonic crouched down into a sprinters stance.
"You wish, Shad. You wish." Shadow stood alongside his rival, bent slightly in a marathon runner's stance.
"On three?" Sonic nodded.