A/N: Quick oneshot. Random idea. No life.
I'm going on vacation soon, so I'm "cleaning out" my laptop to make more room. This is sitting there, so it qualifies as something that needs to get off my damn computer.
Hope you enjoy.
I do not own "Super Robot Monkey Team Hyperforce Go!" and I do not desire it. I (almost) rather have to do math homework.
A Penny For Your Thoughts
Wind blew lazily over the hillside. The sun pulsed mercilessly in the sky. In the distance, Antauri could hear the faint sounds of children playing in the water, carefree, unaware of the Citadel of Bone monitoring their activities. Waiting for them. It was a creepy and, frankly, a totally unwarranted thought. They weren't supposed to be concerned with Skeleton King anymore. He should be an individual existing only on the pages of history books. A threat that no longer matter.
'We are going to be successful this time, correct?'
Antauri tore his gaze away from the Citadel. Back to his companion, walking alongside him. Gibson's normally stern features had softened somewhat, almost to the point of fear. Not that he'd openly admit it.
'I thought you did not believe in fortune telling,' said Antauri.
'I'm...just asking,' Gibson shrugged sheepishly. He sighed and kicked a stone in his path.
Overhead, a jet tore across the sky. Sprx on patrol. Antauri tried to come up with a reasonable answer in this momentary distraction.
'Many will be lost,' he explained. 'But I am not the one who predicted this war.'
Gibson made an gesture, as if to say "go on."
'It was Mandarin.'
'A long time ago,' Antauri continued. 'Before Chiro. Mandarin brought me into his quarters and...and he predicted that we would suffer greatly in the future. This war shall last for years, perhaps, and some will leave us to our ultimate fates.'
'And will we win?'
'...Mandarin...did not know.'
'And what do you think?'
Antauri shook his head. 'Gibson, you know very well that the Mandarin we knew predicted events with utmost accuracy. If he could not sense what our destinies will be, I very well cannot either. Even if I tried, there is a likelihood that it would be wrong. I have been wrong before. Chiro is a fine example of this.'
Gibson sighed. 'You weren't wrong about Chiro. You were the only one who actually believed he was the Chosen One. Honestly, Antauri, we all...we all...'
Antauri turned when Gibson abruptly stopped in mid-sentence. The scientist knelled down, dug around in the gravel, and pulled something out. He held a coin up towards the sun, dusty, and the details worn away with time. The scientist tossed and caught it.
'Do you remember that game we used to play?' asked Gibson.
'The one with Mandarin?'
'Yes, that one,' he repeated the action. 'I think that you're being stupid, for supposedly the wisest monkey around.'
Antauri caught the coin thrown to him. He rolled it in his hand, uncertain for a minute. 'I think that I am not being idiotic, merely pointing out the facts.'
Gibson chuckled, nearly loosing the penny in the exchange. 'I think that is my job.'
Again. 'I think that Mandarin was always the wiser between the two of us.'
'I think you're wrong.'
This time, Antauri made no attempt to grab the coin.
'You and Mandarin were two completely different monkeys,' stated Gibson. 'He hated. You loved. He took advantage. You respected. Antauri, you're...I – I want you to stop comparing yourself to him. You will never be like Mandarin and, personally, I think the reason Mandarin didn't see the end of the war was because he wouldn't be there.'
Gibson picked up the penny and examined it.
'I'm asking you, Antauri. Not Mandarin. Do you believe we will be successful? Will we win this time?'
Antauri weakly smiled. This game was really stupid.
'I do not know, and I do not wish to know,' said Antauri. 'What will happen is something I cannot control. The best we can do is to attempt to save the next generation.'
He could tell this wasn't exactly the kind of reassurance Gibson sought, but it was the best he was going to get. A weak smiled played at the corners of his mouths.
'I think...that...we can try,' Gibson flicked it over a final time. 'A penny for your thoughts, Antauri.'
Side-by-side, the scientist and the psychic made it to the top of the hill. They gazed solemnly out towards the Super Robot, where their four companions closely monitored the Citadel's activities. This had been one of their lucky days. No battles. No death. No sense that Shuggazoom was actually in the midst of a war. Maybe even Skeleton King had "one of those days" when he wanted to take a breather.
Antauri closed his mind. He would not be tempted to try and read the future. Perhaps that had been Mandarin's mistake. He'd been so distracted, he didn't realize where he was heading.
They should play that game more often.