Chapter 18


The two soldiers stood at opposite sides of the roof, the rain pouring down on them in a heavy blanket of water. Hunter held his machete downward at his side, ready to strike at any moment. Sunny gripped her knife and handgun tightly as she gauged his intent. Thunder boomed in the sky as the two stared at one another. It reminded her of the old action movies she would watch as a child. It seemed rather cliché that storm would happen just as they were about to fight, but appropriate at the same time. She knew she would not succeed in her mission without having to fight him. But she was ready now. She knew she could beat him. She had to. She had to survive.

"You seem ready." he said coldly.

"What makes me ready?" she asked, standing her ground.

"You have finally taken a life. Many now, actually. You are more confident, less nervous. You've gotten some valuable experience."

"I have survived. That is all. And so will I continue. I would advise you not to get in my way."

"Hahaha..." he mused, "that is my entire purpose here. To get in your way. Kill me, Sunny Gurlukovich! Kill me, Solid Snake! Kill me, or I will kill you!"

He lunged at her with his blade ready to strike. She jumped backwards and fired three rounds from her gun. The man easily deflected the shots with his blade and continued after her. As she landed from her jump, she leaped to the right in a barrel roll to dodge his advance.

Hunter landed in a stride and turned to face her. "I see you have improved greatly. I was right."

Sunny shook her head, "We do not have to do this, you know. You could come with me. We could be comrades, like Gray Fox and Snake used to be."

"Don't fool yourself, girl. Gray Fox respected Snake, but hated him. Filled with rage and jealousy. Do not think our situation anything else!"

He lunged at her again but she met him head on this time, parrying his machete with her combat knife. She spun to the side and landed her elbow across his face. As he stumbled, she completed her spin, slamming her handgun into the side of his head. Seeing that she had gained the advantage, she did not relent in her assault. She continued throwing kicks and punches it him until she knocked him off balance. He hit the ground in a backwards roll and quickly got to his feet.

"Yes! This is it! Show me what you are! Show me everything!" he yelled as he rushed at her again.

She threw her leg forwards to kick him again, but this time, he caught her leg and threw her across the roof. She landed in a slide on the water and fought to regain friction before she fell off of the roof. She got to her feet just in time to meet a punch from him head-on, sending her back to the floor of the roof.

As she landed, she fired a shot from her pistol. The round shot from the barrel and scraped across his shoulder. Hunter stumbled backwards and grabbed the wound. Sunny threw herself forward, shoving her elbow into his midsection. The man gasped and she followed up with an upper cut. She quickly got back to her feet, gun drawn and ready to fire again.

Hunter merely laughed in amusement, "A flesh wound. If you are not ready to kill me, Sunny Gurlukovich, then I will kill you. You must realize what is at stake here."

"But you are not my enemy," she said sternly, "I count you as friend tonight."

"Oh I see." he retorted, "Let's see what we can do to change your thought processes."

She charged at him this time, only to be met with his forearm and crashing to the ground again. Before she could react, he stomped on her hand and made her drop the gun. He kicked her in her ribs and kicked the gun, sending it flying from the roof. She watched the gun fall from the roof before he slammed his fist down into her chest.

She gasped for air as he picked her up and threw her again. She landed in a another slide, this time, nearly falling from the roof. The rain continued to pour and the thunder continued to boom as he came toward her. She got up to ready herself, but was too late. He threw another punch in her gut, then pushed her backwards. She fell from the roof, barely managing to grab the edge to hold on. The water from the rain gushed against her face as she struggled to keep her grip.

He stood over her as she tried to pull herself up. "Do you realize now. I will kill you. Fight me! Give me a real fight to the death!" he said to her as he raised his machete to slash at her. She quickly stabbed her combat knife into his foot and used her now free hand to get better leverage. She screamed and stammered away from the ledge, giving her enough time to force herself up. He bent over to pull the knife from his foot and she saw her chance.

Without even thinking, she charged at him and landed a kick to his head. He fell to his knees, and she followed up with a roundhouse kick to the side of his head. As he fell, she forced her foot into his gut. On instinct, he grabbed the foot and pulled it out from under her. The two adversaries got back to their feet and Hunter pulled the knife from his foot.

"Ah yes! The pain. give me the pain!" he screamed with joy as he threw her knife back to her.

She picked up the knife as she kept her focus completely on him. She knew now that she could not let her defenses down for him. If she did. She was dead. She would have to do whatever it took. She gripped the knife and held it firmly.

"The rage," he said, "it is growing, responding to you. If I kill you, it will finally go away."

"You have issues," she said tauntingly, "Allow me to help you deal with those."

Hunter smirked under the cloth covering his mouth, "So this is it. One will live, one will die. The way it is meant to be!"

He charged at her again, his machete ready for blood. She stood still, waiting for him to get exactly where she wanted him. As he got close enough, she shot up with a kick, knocking him off balance. She landed on his midsection and used her momentum to leap up and slam down on him with another kick. As she returned to the ground, she readied her combat knife and smiled with her victory.

Hunter got to his feet in a rage and came after her again, slashing in all directions. She ducked and dodged the slashes with graceful agility. This only infuriated him more and finally he had had enough. While she was busy dodging his kicks, he threw his knee into her gut. The blow caught her off guard and knocked the breath of her. Before she could react he threw is elbow up and caught her in the head. The force of the blow sent her reeling into a backwards flip before she hit the ground.

She struggled to catch her breath as the man closed the distance between them. He picked her up over his head and slammed her into the floor of the roof again. The air was still not getting into her lungs and she was beginning to panic.

She glanced up to see his fist coming down at her. As he struck her, her head bounced off of the concrete. Her vision blurred and began to flash white. Hunter stood over her, looking down as she breathed heavily and bled from her nose and mouth. He grunted and turned to walk away from her. "You are still not ready, after all."

As he began to walk away, he heard splashing in the water. He turned to see a battered Sunny getting to her feet. "No." she said as she regained her breathing, " We are not done yet. I have not given up."

He clapped at her in a mocking manner, "You really are resilient, I'll give you that. But I can't kill you until you are at your full potential."

"Then I will kill you!" she screamed as she charged at him with her combat knife.

He spun and caught her with a slash to her mid section. She cringed as the blow stunned her. Hunter kicked the knife from her hand and threw down his machete. He pummeled her with a series of punches, each more powerful than the last.

Her head began spinning and her vision grew dark. With one last burst of energy, he threw his knee into her face and put her back on the ground. Blood dripped from the gashes on her face, and the large cut across her chest. As her vision went in and out, she saw him calmly pick up his blade and make his way toward her.

As he neared, she knew he had won. She thought that she could beat him, but she could not. She could not survive. She could not save Snake, or John, or her mother. "Snake..." she whispered with her last breath as Hunter slammed the hilt of the blade into her head.