Gundam SEED Destiny
By: Tellemicus Sundance
Phase #05—Scars That Won't Heal
Unbeknownst to virtually everyone, a group of men and women in GINN High Maneuver Type IIs and worker pods were moving around the largest piece of Junius Seven. They were all fanatics on a mission. To finish what Patrick Zala started.
"Solar wind velocity is steady. Flare level S3. Estimated time to particle arrival, 30 seconds," one pilot reported.
"Hurry up," a GINN pilot said. "What about Unit 9?"
"We're just about ready, sir," another replied.
A worker pod entered a code on the final motor. "Flare motor ignition countdown starting."
All of the mobile suits and pods started to withdraw from Junius Seven as one of them started the countdown. "Ten... Nine... Eight... Seven... Six... Five... Four... Three... Two... One... Particles have arrived. Flare motors activating."
Hundreds of red lights appeared across Junius Seven. The speed of the massive wreckage increased, driving towards Earth.
"Junius Seven has begun to move."
Sato, the leader of the group, glanced at a group of photos taped to his console. "Helen, Kristen... We'll be reunited after this," he whispered as his former home headed for Earth.
"Now fall! Our great tombstone!" Sato shouted to heavens. "On a world that has forgotten the voices of sorrow! That closes its eyes to the truth! And chooses to wallow in deceit! The hour of correction is now at hand!"
He was heaving heavily, hands clenched tightly to the controls and his pilot suit soaked in his sweat. Though the visor of his helmet was open, it did little to offer him any comfort from the thick atmosphere that was being created in the cockpit. In a few short minutes, the oxygen would be depleted and he would suffocate if he didn't open his hatch or replace his helmet. But right now, he didn't care.
In his mind's eye, cloudy images and hazy emotions were swirling around in a chaotic and terrible maelstrom. Kai barely managed to raise his right Divum to take the impact—He knew who he was fighting out there—the crash sending him flying backwards. But how did he survive? He'd seen him get consumed in that explosion! Kai dashed forward—Blitz slid to the side, lashing out—the Blitz's knee snapped up—knocking it spinning away. But Kai could recognize that fighting style anywhere. Kai spun around and slashed—the Blitz ducked under it—kicked the second Divum away. It was impossible to forget the fighting style of the man who'd taken nearly everything away from him.
"Is something wrong?" a soft voice suddenly spoke up from the radio. It sounded like one of the mechanics outside. "Come on, Uchida, open up. We need to do some repairs and maintenance."
Kai made no response. He just continued to sit in his chair as his mind continued to race, hands clenching and unclenching sporadically. How did the bastard survive? It was a question that just kept spiraling around his brain with no true answer presenting itself to him. Kai had done his utmost best to kill the bastard last time they'd seen one another and he'd been damn sure that he'd succeeded. How was it that he was still alive and able to pilot that mobile suit?
"Uchida, if you don't open up, I'm gonna have to do it myself," the mechanic warned, irritation thick in his voice.
But Kai paid him no attention. Even with the Mirage, I wasn't strong enough to beat him, Kai's eyes widened as that realization made itself known to him. I was fighting at my best and he'd handled me like it was child's play! His confusion and anger quickly began to change into something far more dangerous as that thought settled.
When the hatch in front of him opened unexpectedly, Kai's eyes had narrowed into furious slits as he finally began to respond. A trio of mechanics peered inside the suit to see if anything had happened to him, not that he was paying attention. On autopilot, he unbuckled himself from his seat and exited his Gundam, drifting silently down towards the locker rooms.
He didn't say a word to anyone, not even when he walked down the hallway later and locked himself into his quarters to brood and contemplate.
"I know you." Orga said.
"What? What are talking about? This is the first time we've met." Gekido replied.
The former Extended shook his head. "No. I know who you are. Kevin Hunter."
Gekido raised an eyebrow questioningly. "I…I don't know that name. Did I know you?"
"You were one of us. You piloted the Massacre. Hell, we thought you died at Jachin Due." Orga answered. "Don't you remember?"
Gekido had heard the stories of the four devastating Earth Alliance mobile suits in final days of the last war. The Invasion of Orb, the Taking of Victoria, the Battle of Boaz and Jachin Due. Survivors had told tales of four EA mobile suits that virtually unstoppable. The few survivors of Boaz, as well as many of the survivors of Jachin Due that encountered them, had dubbed them the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. Not just because of their ferocity in combat, but because they also escorted the Alliance's nuclear warheads during the battles.
Were those three machines apart of those four? Gekido didn't know. He had never seen any records from those battles. But was he one of those four or just someone that looks like one of them? No. He knew who he was. "No. I have no idea who you're talking about. My name is Gekido Jaeger." he said, heading away from the green haired pilot.
Gekido never talked about his past. Because he didn't have a past. His earliest memory was waking up in a ZAFT hospital about eight months after the Battle of Jachin Due, with no name, no memory, and only one link to who he was. He entered the quarters he shared with Dale. He opened a drawer in his desk, pulling out a small journal.
The only thing he had on him when he was brought to hospital and the only clue to his past. Unfortunately, what was written in it was little more than the ravings of a lunatic. Some of writings were angry and violent, ranting against men in white, a prick in a blue suit, and one particular man that the writer seemed to hate and fear. Some seemingly pleading with some unknown person. The rest was just gibberish for a lack of better term.
Once again, he opened the journal and began to read through a section of it once again.
Why? Why did she leave me here? I was trying to protect her. Protect her from HIM. So why did she abandon me? Why did she call me a monster?
Later than Night
BEEP! BEEP! BEEP!
Talia rose from her bed, draping a sheet over her naked body. She reached her desk and opened the comm. "Yes?"
"Captain. There's a message from the Supreme Council on Channel 1 for Chairman Durandal."
Talia looked over her shoulder at her bed. Gillbert nodded. "I'll take it in here." he said.
Thirty Minutes Later
Cagalli suppressed a yawn as she rubbed her tired eyes. Standing beside her was Athrun and Flay. All of them were wondering why the Chairman had called for them in the middle of the night. The door to the Captain's Quarters opened.
"Come in Princess." Durandal said, greeting them. "I'm afraid I have some grave news for you."
"What is it? What's happened?" Cagalli asked as they entered.
"Take a seat and I'll explain everything." Durandal answered.
Cagalli and Durandal both sat down as Flay and Athrun stood beside Cagalli while Captain Gladys stood next to Durandal. The Chairman let out a tired sigh and explained what they had just learned from ZAFT, stunning and horrifying the three.
"What? Junius Seven is moving towards Earth?" Cagalli exclaimed.
"But Junius Seven's orbit was supposed to be stable for hundreds of years. How could this happen?" Flay asked.
"We don't know. Perhaps an asteroid hit it and altered its course," Durandal suggested. "Regardless, it is now on a collision course with the Earth."
"If it falls... Orb... No, the entire planet..." Cagalli stopped, unable to finish her sentence.
Flay's mind was on her son and Chris. One of her hands were wrapped around her locket and Chris' dog tags. Junius Seven had been Chris' home before it was destroyed. His parents and many of his friends had died there and was their resting place. And Alexander was living in Orb. He was in danger. If Junius Seven hit the Earth, he would...
Her hand clenched around the two objects. She would not allow that to happen. She had lost enough already.
"Indeed, Princess. If Junius Seven collides with Earth, the damage would be catastrophic." Durandal said. "At the moment, we're doing all we can to stop the collision and investigating what caused this disaster." Durandal sighed. "I must apologize for involving you in yet another incident, but I have ordered the Minerva to head for Junius Seven once our repairs have been completed. I hope you understand."
Cagalli nodded. "Of course. This is vital to all of us as well. And I offer any assistance that I or the Orb personnel with me can offer." she urgently said.
"I appreciate your offer, Princess. I fear that we may have to call on them before this is over."
The Next Day
The Minerva pilots and some of the crew as well as John, Orga, Clotho and Shani were sitting around, talking the news that had spread across the ship like wildfire. That Junius Seven was now on a collision course with Earth. Expect for Shani, Orga and Clotho, who were sitting off to a side, lost in their own little worlds. "Hmm... But how did it start moving?" Vino asked before taking a sip from his drink.
"Maybe a meteorite or something hit it." Yolant suggested.
"So then is it really on a collision course with Earth?" Shinn asked.
"Aye." John grimly replied, staring into the contents of his coffee mug.
Luna sighed. "First the attack on Armory One, which we have yet to wrap up, and now this. Just what is going on?"
"So what are we going to do when get to Junius Seven?" Tristan asked. "I mean how do we stop something like that?"
"Simple. We shatter it." Suiren answered as she entered the room.
"Shatter it? How?" Vino asked.
"I just finished talking to the ZAFT Commander that's been placed in charge of the operation. It's impossible to change it's course in time. So we're going to use Meteor Breakers to shatter Junius Seven into countless smaller pieces. Most of which will burn up in the atmosphere. Those that do get through the atmosphere will cause considerably less damage." Suiren explained.
"But that thing's huge!" exclaimed Yolant. "Even if we do break it half, that's still 8 kilometers we have to break up."
Gekido grunted. "And your point is?"
"How do you destroy something that big?"
"And what about the victims?" Meyrin quietly added. "It's filled with the bodies of those who died."
"But if it hits, Earth will be annihilated." Rey countered. "Nothing would be left. Alive or dead."
Everyone was silent for moment, contemplating what would happen. "Oh well... If it's meant to be, it's meant to be. It's out of our hands." Yolant mused. "But look on bright side, it'd solve a lot of hassles for us and things would be better for us in the PLANTs."
"Don't even joke about that, kid." John coldly said as he stood over Yolant.
"Hey! He was just kidding around. Yolant didn't mean that." Shinn said in defense of his friend.
"You don't get it, do you? We're talking about billions of lives here! It would be the same as every PLANT being destroyed at the same time." John replied. "All of your friends, family, everyone you know, gone in an instant. That is was we are dealing with here. I don't give a damn about whatever problem any of you have with the governments of Earth, it's people do not deserve annihilation. And you're luckly that neither Representative Athha or Flay are here at the moment. Both of them would kick your asses for that."
"We know that!" Shinn yelled back. "Yolant was just trying to lighten the mood!"
"You do not lighten mood with that kind of crap." John shot back. "I thought the PLANTs had changed since Patrick Zala ran things. What he said was the kind of garbage that he, the creep Le Creuset and those followed them, would say."
Unnoticed by the rest of them, both Rey and Suiren tensed at the mention of Creuset.
"If that's what those in the ZAFT still believe, I'm glad I left."
Shinn opened his mouth, but before he could say anything, Suiren interrupted. "That's enough you two! We're supposed to be allies here! Not tearing each others' throats out!"
John nodded. "Sorry about that. I got a little carried away there. But I was right. This isn't a joking matter."
"I agree. But attacking Yolant isn't going to accomplish anything." Suiren replied. "Shinn. I don't hear your apology."
"I'm sorry." Shinn grumbled.
"Now, let's focus on mission ahead of us. Alright?"
A Private Estate
A group of wealthy men sat around a plush, expensive-looking lounge, talking about the looming crisis. "Well then, this is a shocking situation."
"Indeed. A truly unprecedented crisis. The doomsday scenario of Earth."
"I can't help but wonder if someone actually wrote such scenario."
"I've ordered Phantom Pain to investigate that matter," Djibril said to his associates.
"Does that even matter now? What good will such an investigation do?" Mr. Lorne asked.
"That's what we are investigating," Djibril answered.
"Why did you call this meeting, Djibril?" Mr. Gradenko asked, an impatient tone in his voice. "I can't see the Atlantic Federation and all the other nations of the Earth not doing everything they can to prevent that thing from falling and taking the necessary precautions in case it does hit."
Djibril suppressed a smirk. "I'm not being overly dramatic when I say that I am completely shocked by what's happened." he said. "Junius Seven... 'Is this really happening and why?' Those were the first questions that entered my mind as well."
Mr. Hoffesommer punched the table he was sitting at. "Cut to the chase, Djibril."
"No. That's the whole point." he replied with a smirk. "Given what's about to happen, the whole world will be asking these questions. That's where we come in. Durandal of the PLANTs has already issued a warning to all the nations of the Earth and that ZAFT is already doing everything they can to prevent a collision."
"He was quick to do so."
"They're panicking as well."
"Perhaps this event is due to natural causes." Mr. Lorne mused. "If that's the case..."
"So what? That's irrelevant now," Djibril said, seeking to crush any thought of that before it started. "What's important is what happens after the crisis. What's important is the answer that we will provide the grieving citizens when they ask, 'Why did this happen?'. Which is why I have secured us a useful asset," He turned to the door. "Miss Ryker."
A young woman in a light blue dress entered the room. She was an attractive girl, with black eyes and her skin was a dark tan color. She politely bowed before the group. "Good afternoon gentlemen. I am Serena Ryker."
"Miss Ryker will be the public face of the Earth Alliance this crisis has ended." he turned to the girl. "Why don't give them a little preview."
"Yes sir." Serena said, turning to the group of gathered men. "This is the speech I've prepared should Junius Seven be broken into smaller, less damaging pieces that hit the Earth. 'People of Earth, a terrible tragedy has befallen us. Cities have devastated. Countless lives have lost. A horrible accident... Or at least that's what Chairman Durandal of ZAFT would have you believe. The truth is that it was not an accident. But an attack on us'." she cleared her throat and smiled. "You'll have to wait for the rest, gentlemen."
"That will be all, Miss Ryker." Djibril said with a wave of his hand. "You may leave."
She bowed her head. "As you wish, Lord Djibril." she replied before leaving.
"Hmph... Where did you find that girl?"
"An associate of mine found her about a year ago. A poor, starved orphan from the last war." Djibril mused. "Who better to be the 'Voice of the People' for this war?"
"Impressive, Djibril. You've been thinking quite far in advance for this," Gradenko commented.
"Of course. Regardless of the cause, no one can deny that very soon, one clumsy, stupid object up in the sky is going to fall down on our heads. It's a humiliation! Think of how this looks. Because of that cursed thing, we all run around, looking scared and spineless. Someone must pay for this disgrace. But who?" Djibril paused, letting his question sink in. "Who else but the Coordinators who put that thing into space in the first place! Doesn't that make sense?"
"That's fine with me. But given the situation, the damage may be so severe that we may not have the strength to fight a war." Lorne pointed out.
"That is why I have gathered you here today." Djibril replied. "Escaping and seeking shelter is fine. But immediately afterwards we should attack, with the plan. I'd like to request your collective approval."
"A bold move."
"The resulting hatred for the Coordinators will get the people riled up. They will fight."
"Those that are left anyway," Mr. Lorne sighed. "I suppose that we'll be uniting the people with the power of hatred."
Gradenko nodded. "It appears that there are no objections, Djibril. We'll meet again after the crisis has ended. Have a detailed plan prepared by then."
"Commander. We're in position, as are the Valkyrie, the Einherjar, the Thor, the Loki, the Baldur, the Voltaire and the Rousseau." an operator reported.
The Commander nodded. "Patch me through to all our forces in."
"All ZAFT personnel, this is Commander Diana Kessel. As you are aware, Junius Seven is on a collision course with Earth. If it hits, the devastation it will cause will be catastrophic. We cannot allow that to happen. All team leaders: deploy your teams. Get the Meteor Breakers in position. Commander Kessel, out."
"You know, I got a bad feeling about this." Ajay commented as the first of the mobile suits were deployed. "A real bad feeling."
"That does not matter." Diana replied. "We have to break up Junius Seven before it can hit the Earth."
The Bridge of the Baldur
"Look at the size of that think. It's huge." Dearka commented as they watched Junius Seven draw closer to Earth.
Commander Yzak Joule looked over should at his red coated second-in-command. "What do you expect? They have to be big, Dearka. We live on these things, remember."
"I know that, Yzak. The mission we're on is very important. I commented on the size as a reminder of just how important it is," Dearka replied, heading for the elevator.
"Just make sure the job gets done," Yzak called out. "We're running out of time."
Teams of GuAIZ Rs and ZAKUs carrying Meteor Breakers left from their ships, heading for Junius Seven. Within a matter of minutes, the first of the teams had started setting up their Breakers. But they weren't alone. A pair of GINNs fired on a ZAKU and two GuAIZs setting up a Breaker, destroying the three mobile suits before they fired on the device. Elsewhere, a pair of GuAIZs that carrying one of the Meteor Breakers were also shot down by a GINN.
"What the... Gunfire?" Dearka said as watched a team being gunned down. "Shiho, everyone, we're under attack! Form up around the Breakers and defend them! Yzak, we're under attack! You better send out reinforcements!"
"Commander! The Joule Team, the DeCosta Team, and the Kukov Team are reporting that they're under fire!"
Everyone on the bride was stunned. Who'd be insane enough to attack them as they were trying to shatter Junius Seven? "Send word to the fleet! Deploy all mobile suits at once! Everyone is to defend the Meteor Breakers! Everything else is secondary to that!" Diana ordered as she headed for the elevator. "Send word the Minerva too!"
The Girty Lue
"What do you think those ZAFT mobile suits are doing?" Lee asked as they watched the two groups of ZAFT mobile suits battle.
"I'm just as puzzled as you are," Neo replied. "Perhaps this isn't an act of God, after all. Send out Treize's team and be sure to record as much data as possible."
"Three minutes until mobile suit launch." Meyrin said over the intercom. "All pilots are to board their machines and remain on standby. I repeat..."
"I know we're supposed to assist the teams breaking up Junius Seven, but what exactly does that mean?" Luna asked Yolant as she reached her ZAKU.
At that moment, Luna spotted Athrun boarding the spare ZAKU. "Hey, what is he doing?"
Yolant looked over his shoulder and shrugged. "Well I guess in a support operation like this, it's better to have too many machines than not enough."
"Well... I guess he does know how to pilot a mobile suit." Luna commented.
A few minutes later, Suiren's ZAKU and the Farsight had been loaded onto the catapults. The crews were going through the final launch preparations when Meyrin's voice came over the intercom. "Abort launch immediately! The situation has changed! The 11th Fleet is battling an unknown force at Junius Seven! All units are to equip for anti-mobile suit combat!"
"What? Meyrin! What's going on? Who's attacking Junius Seven?" Suiren asked, trying to handle on the situation.
"That's about all we know." Meyrin replied. "We just detected them."
"Damn. This rules out natural causes." John said. "The only ones that would be attacking the teams out there would be the ones who altered Junius Seven's course."
"That doesn't matter." Suiren said. "The mission is still the same. Ensure that Junius Seven is broken up before it hits the Earth."
"Just get me out there!" Kai shouted over the radio as he waited impatiently for his turn to launch. "I'll cut all of those bastards to pieces by myself!"
"You'll get your chance, Uchida. Be patient!" Suiren growled, deeply irritated by his loud voice. Once these days, she swore she was going to knock that guy out!
The Core Splendor was launched, followed by the Force Silhouette, the Chest Flyer, and the Leg Flyer. After Shinn's machine had launched, the rest of the machines started launching. Soon, all of the Minerva's mobile suits had been launched, heading for Junius Seven.
"This time, the Coordinators have gone too far this time!" Gyunei shouted as they approached Junius Seven. "I'm gonna tear them to pieces!"
"Patience. They will pay in due time." Treize said, scanning the area. "There. I've located a group of ZAFT warships. Rezin, Maia, you're with me. We're going to sink those ships. Aleron, take everyone else and go after the mobile suits."
Across Junius Seven, the ZAFT forces battled the insurgents. A GuAIZ was sliced in two by a GINN. Dearka fired his gun launcher at the GINN, destroying it. Shiho aimed her cannons at a pair of GINNs and fired, hitting both machines. A third lunged at her with a sword. But Shiho shot it down with her rifle.
"Damn. These guys are persistent." Shiho said as she switched out her rifle's dead battery clip for a fresh one. "But why are they attacking us? We're trying break Junius Seven up."
"No clue," Dearka answered, combining his gun launcher and rifle together and firing on a group of GINNs. "But this isn't really the time for questions."
As Shiho and Dearka continued to fired on the insurgents, the Extended pilots arrived at Junius Seven. "Spread out and destroy them all." Aleron ordered as his mobile suit disappeared under Mirage Colloid.
Gyunei licked his lips in anticipation as they headed for the two ZAFT pilots. "Alright! Time for some action!"
Dearka swore as the two of them dodged the incoming shots. "Damn, the thieves from Armory One. As if we didn't have enough problems."
Reccoa drew one of her sabers and lunged at Shiho. The ZAFT ace threw her rifle in front of her as she pulled back, catching the blade. Shiho fired her cannons at the Blu Duel. But Reccoa dove down, evading the beams. The second the beams past her, Reccoa leaped forward, intending to cut the ZAKU apart. But just as she reached him, a burst of beams tore between the two, forcing them both back.
"Shiho, you alright?" Yzak asked as he moved in front of the dark blue ZAKU.
Yzak took a glance at the Blu Duel. "Hmph... A new Duel model. Well, get ready punk. Cause I'm the original Duel pilot and there's no way I'm going to lose to you!"
Yzak drew his Falx beam axe and swung at Reccoa, who blocked with her saber.
At the same time, Sting launched his mobile pods, firing on Dearka as Auel swung his spear at Shiho. Dearka dodged Sting's shots before firing back his combined weapon at the stolen machine. Shiho drew her sword and clashed with the Abyss.
Other ZAKUs and GuAIZs fired on the Rosso Aegis and the Gaia. Both pilots dodged the beams and fired back with their rifles, shooting down many of the ZAFT machines. But as if that wasn't enough, a group of GINNs attacked both groups.
Suddenly a series of beams shot out of nowhere, destroying numerous GINNs and ZAFT mobile suits. The Fantôme Blitz materialized as it charged forward and drew one of its beam sabers, slicing two ZAKUs apart in one swing as it passed.
"Heheheh, let's get the new war started with a real bang! HAHAHAHA!" Delahaye laughed as he turned and once again disappeared under the Mirage Colloid.
Gyunei laughed as well as he transformed his machine into its mobile armor mode. "So many targets... Who am I gonna crush first? I know... YOU!" he roared, lunging at Dearka.
But he was stopped by a single beam. "Hey punks. Looks like we meet again." Suiren said.
Turning, Gyunei spotted a sparkling brown blur racing towards him at high speeds. It was only a frantic adjustment of his maneuvering thrusters that saved him from being sliced in two as the sparkling blur dashed past him.
"Aw, I missed!" Kai moaned, but then he shifted his attention to the battle taking place just ahead him. "Oh well, there's plenty to go around here!"
The Impulse, the ZAKUs, the GuAIZs, the Farsight, the Strike Raven, the Forbidden, the Calamity and Raider were only a few seconds behind the Mirage. The group immediately separated and struck all enemies within their sites.
Gekido grunted as he and Tristan fired on the Gaia. "The Specter's not here."
"That doesn't matter at the moment. There's plenty of enemies right here." Tristan replied.
Clotho glanced around at the mobile suits around them. "Hey. Which guys are we suppose to attack?"
"The black and purple GINNs and the guys from the last battle," John answered.
Clotho smirked. "All I need to know."
Clotho threw his spherical breaker, smashing through a GINN's chest. Orga unleashed a fierce barrage from his cannons and bazooka, blowing away several GINNs. A pair of GINNs fired on the Forbidden, their beams bouncing off his defectors. Shani laughed as he fired his Hresvelgr cannon at them, the curving beam destroying them.
Stella landed on Junius Seven, transforming the Gaia into its mobile armor mode, heading for a pair of GuAIZs setting up a Meteor Breaker. Suddenly, the Raven Striker pack slammed into the Gaia, knocking Stella back. Flay landed in front of the Gaia as the Raven Striker reattached itself. Flay drew one of her beam saber as the Gaia transformed back and drew one of its sabers, and the two clashed.
Gyunei wildly swung his beam saber-tipped arms at the Impulse. Shinn backed away from the Aegis, ducking and sidestepping his swings. A lucky swing caught Shinn's shield, cutting into it. Shinn let go of the shield as he drew his saber and swung it down on the Rosso Aegis. Gyunei ducked back, kicking the Impulse in the chest. "I gonna do what no one else has done. I'm gonna take your head! Then even Treize will have to acknowledge my superiority!"
He fired off several shots from his Scylla cannon. The beams forced Shinn back. "Damn. This guy's nuts." Shinn said as he fired his rifle at Aegis.
Reccoa and Yzak continued their duel when Suiren fired on the Blu Duel, forcing it back. "Hey! Stay out of this!" Yzak shouted.
Reccoa pulled out several of her Stiletto penetrators and was about to throw them at Suiren's ZAKU. However, a feeling of danger flashed over Suiren's awareness and caused her pull away, narrowly missing a beam that had been meant for her ZAKU's powerplant. Seeing that Aleron had taken an interest in that particular ZAKU, Reccoa was quick to return her attention to her earlier opponent and was just in time to block his Falx with her shield.
Dancing away and around following shots, Suiren spun around and snapped off a quick shot in the direction they were coming from. Her aim was close enough to force the Fantôme Blitz to drop its invisibility in favor of its VPS armor. Twisting around another of Suiren's shots, the Blitz fired off its Hakenfaust at her. Bringing a shield up, Suiren blocked the deadly weapon but was in a bad position to block the follow up beam shot towards her mooneye.
"Damn. That was a lucky shot." Suiren cursed.
"Luck had nothing to do with it, Coordinator." Aleron stated as he yanked the Hakenfaust back and tried to press his advantage by firing his shield-rifle at his blinded opponent.
But Suiren was more than experienced enough to block the shots and return fire as best she could, keeping her deadly opponent at bay.
Elsewhere, Athrun, Luna and Rey battled the insurgents. Luna fired her cannon, hitting two GINNs in one shot. A GINN moved behind Luna, intending to shoot her in the back, when a beam tore through it. "Thanks Rey." Luna called out.
"Don't mention it." Rey replied, firing at more GINNs.
A GINN fired at Athrun's ZAKU, but Athrun blocked it with his shield and drew his tomahawk. The GINN pilot, seeing that as a challenge, discarded his rifle and pulled out his sword. The GINN rushed towards Athrun. Just as it was about to attack, Athrun struck, slicing off its sword arm. But GINN pilot didn't let up. He continued to attack, trying to tackle Athrun. Leaving Athrun no choice but to slash at the GINN's torso, destroying it.
The Mirage was certainly living up to its name. Kai had long since activated the Blazing Mirage, scattering the sensor-jamming particles over a vast area of the battlefield. The reflected light of the sun and numerous explosions and lights of the battlefield and debris caused the already fuzzy image of the brown Gundam to seemingly disappear or gain numerous hazy clones surrounding or trailing after it. Many of the GINN pilots had panicked as they fell under the strange power of the Gundam and were firing wildly in hopes of scoring a lethal hit on it, but usually came nowhere near close enough.
"Sixteen—seventeen—eighteen," Kai was having the time of his life. If it weren't for the direness of the situation, he'd had been laughing his head off. Still, he was wearing an impossibly wide grin as he counted his number of kills. "Nineteen—twenty—twenty-one—twenty-two!"
He was spinning and dancing around and between his enemies with lethal grace, his twin Divum blades tearing one GINN apart after another and his Deluge rail-cannons were blazing furiously. This was almost too much fun!
Well aimed beams rained across Junius Seven, taking out the insurgent GINNs with surgical precision. "Sir, it's good to see you again." Diana said as she pulled her dark purple ZAKU alongside the Farsight.
"I'm not your superior officer anymore." John said with an annoyed tone. "Call me John."
John shook his head and rolled his eyes.
"Commander! The Specter and two unknown mobile suits as well as several GINNs are heading for the fleet!" ZAKU pilot reported.
Diana scowled. They needed to protect the Breakers. But if they lost their ships, they'd have nowhere to go afterwards. "Basque! Take you team and defend the fleet. Everyone else, focus on protecting the Meteor Breakers."
Basque nodded. "Ma'am."
"You made the right choice." John said. "We have to minimize the damage to Earth, even if the fleet suffers for it."
"I know sir. I know."
"Ma'am. The Joule Team is under attack by Chaos, Gaia, Abyss and three of the machines from Bogey-1." Meyrin reported.
"What? At this rate, they won't be able to carry out the operation in time." Arthur exclaimed. "Captain, we need to attack Bogey-1."
Talia turned to Durandal. "Chairman, I'd like your opinion on Bogey-1 at this time. Are they renegades or are they from the Earth Alliance?"
"It's difficult to say. Personally, I don't want to think of them as members of the Earth Alliance."
"There's no telling what would happen," Talia said, "if such embers were to ignite."
"But the situation has changed," Durandal pointed out.
"Yes, with the current emergency situation," Talia said, more so to herself than anyone else. "If that unit admits to being a part of the Earth Alliance or somehow associated with them, then they would have no reason to fight us."
"What if they believe that we are protecting those GINNs?" Durandal mused.
"But we're not!" Arthur nearly shouted.
"It's not that obvious." Talia countered. "Image if those machines were Daggers and Alliance forces showed up. You'd think they were a part of that as well."
"Are we able to contact Bogey-1?" Durandal asked.
"There is the International Rescue Channel." Talia replied. "We might be able to contact them through that channel."
"Then please try to contact them." the Chairman said. "Tell them that we're supporting the work to break up Junius Seven before it drops to Earth."
The ZAFT Fleet
"You bastards! Trying to drop this on the Earth! I'll make sure you don't live long enough to see it crash!" Treize yelled, firing his beam revolvers at a group of GINNs, GuAIZs and ZAKUs, destroying them all with well-aimed shots.
"Hey punk! Eat this!" Basque called out from the edge of the Einherjar's catapult, firing his Orthros beam cannon.
Treize effortlessly sidestepped his shots as raced towards the ship. He fired off a single beam, piercing Basque's cannon, destroying it. Then Treize tackled the ZAKU, slamming it into the Einherjar's hanger doors. "Time to die, Coordinator." Treize said, pointing his cannon at Basque's ZAKU.
Basque roared, drawing his beam tomahawk and lunging forward. Treize fired, the beam piercing the ZAKU torso and hitting the Einherjar's hanger. The Bruticus exploded. Treize then aimed his cannon at the bridge of the Einherjar. Suddenly, he felt something. Treize spun to the left and fired, nearly hitting a blood red ZAKU Phantom. The ZAKU fired it's rifle, forcing Treize to leap off the Nazca-class. "Pest. I'll dispose of you too!" he shouted, drawing his sword.
The ZAKU pilot only responded by switching from his rifle to his Falx beam axe. The two charged forward, their weapons clashing.
Maia fired the grenades from her rifles and her railguns at the Thor. Explosions tore across the side of the ship's hull. Rezin approached the Odin, firing a barrage of missiles and beams at the warship. Explosions blossomed across its hull. "Oh? Still standing? Here, take another barrage!"
Suddenly, a pair of ZAKUs fired on her. "You're not sinking the Commander's flag!" one of the pilots shouted.
"Jerks! Get out of my way!" Rezin roared, firing on the ZAKUs.
Suddenly, as the various combatants fought across Junius Seven, the deployed Meteor Breakers drilled through the colony. A massive crack formed across the surface of the colony. Everyone paused as Junius Seven split in two. One half slowed down, drifting away from the other as it continued on its course. Some of the ZAFT pilots let out a cheer. Dearka included.
"Don't celebrate yet," Athrun said. "We still have work to do, we need to break it up more."
Both Yzak and Dearka were surprised to hear Athrun's voice. "What are you doing here, in a place like this, you bastard?" Yzak angrily asked.
"That doesn't matter." Athrun replied. "We still have to finish the job."
"I know that." grunted Yzak. Dearka and Shiho grabbed a fallen Breaker as Yzak and Athrun flew cover for them.
"You sure haven't changed, Yzak." Athrun commented as they traveled.
Dearka chuckled. "All we're missing is Nicol and Saul."
A group of insurgents rose up from behind a large slab of rock, ambushing the group as they reached a drill site.
"Yzak!" Athrun shouted as they attacked.
"Shut up! I'm the commander now!" Yzak said, as trio of GINNs surrounded him. "Don't order me around, civilian!"
Yzak swung his beam axe in a wide arc, slicing a GINN in half and hacking the legs off another. The third fired on him, but Yzak was faster, dodging the beams and stabbing the GINN through the head with a beam saber.
Athrun gunned down two GINNs when a third rushed him. Athrun grabbed one of his grenades. Just as the GINN reached him, Athrun slammed the grenade into the GINN's eye slit, just left of the mono-eye. Athrun pulled back just before the grenade exploding, taking out the GINN. Dearka fired his gun launcher and rifle at last two of GINNs the group, destroying them as Shiho set up the Breaker.
The Meteor Breaker, along with several more, activated and tore through the colony. Chucks broke away from Junius Seven, reducing its size even more. But it still wasn't enough.
The Girty Lue fired off its retreat flares. One by one, the Extended pilots withdrew from the area. Treize was the last. Taking one last look at the red ZAKU Phantom. Treize had thrown nearly everything he had at that ZAKU, only to be blocked or countered every time. Forget that white machine, the sparkling brown one, and the others from the ZAFT ship; this was real opponent. Treize would remember him and seek him out in future battles.
Aboard the Minerva, the crew let out a sigh of relief. "It looks like they finally believed us." Durandal commented.
"Perhaps. Or perhaps they withdrew for another reason." Talia said.
"Altitude." she replied. "If we keep descending with Junius Seven, we won't be able to escape Earth's gravity." Talia sighed. "We must start choosing between lives... The lives that we can save and the lives that we can't." Talia turned to Durandal. "I'm sorry sir. But I'm going to have to ask you to transfer to the Voltaire. The Minerva will descend into the atmosphere. We'll try to break it up Junius Seven with the Tannhauser."
"What?" a very stunned Arthur said. "You can't be serious Captain!"
"I don't know how much we'll be able to do, but if could do something but didn't how could we live with ourselves?"
"I'm a woman of luck. You can trust me."
"Very well. Thank you Talia." Durandal solemnly said, rising from his seat. "We will meet again."
Talia saluted him. "You should get going Mr. Chairman."
Durandal turned to Cagalli. "Princess."
Cagalli shook her head. "No. I'm staying." she said, surprising the crew yet again. "Athrun hasn't returned yet. Besides, if the Minerva is going to all this trouble to save the Earth, then I'm going with it."
"Yes, but people who hold office have other duties as well." Talia replied.
"Well, if the Representative wishes to stay, than I will respect her wishes." Durandal said before he left.
"Inform the Voltaire that the Chairman is transferring to their ship. And fire the retreat flares." Talia ordered.
The Minerva fired its flares as text messages appeared on the consoles of the ZAFT and Orb mobile suits.
"It's time to withdraw. We're getting too close to the atmosphere." Diana said. "All forces withdraw. The Minerva's going to try to break it up further with its main cannon."
"But I haven't gotten forty yet," Kai groaned to himself as he turned his Gundam around and raced off towards his mothership. The survivors of the ZAFT fleet withdrew to their ships as Minerva pilots and their Orb allies headed back to the Minerva. Shinn was heading for the Minerva with them when he caught Athrun, Flay and John setting up a Meteor Breaker.
"What are you doing?" Shinn asked as he rushed to their position. "We have to get out of here before the Minerva fires the Tannhauser!"
"Get out of here. Don't worry about us." Flay replied.
"The Minerva's main cannon will only scorch the surface. It won't be as effective as this." Athrun added.
"If you want to help, then cover us." John said. "I doubt that our attackers have given up that easily."
Beams suddenly hit the ground near the Breaker. "NO!" Sato roared as he lead a trio of GINNs towards the group. "We won't let you stop it!"
Two GINNs were armed with rifles and fired at the Breaker as they approached. Shinn, Flay and Athrun quickly blocked the beams with their shields.
"My daughter's tombstone must fall! It's the only way the world will change!" one pilot screamed as he raced towards the four.
"I don't care!" Flay screamed back as she headed for the GINN. "I won't let you bring down Junius Seven! Such a tragedy must never be unleashed on the world again!" Drawing a beam saber, she sliced the GINN in half at the waist. "I will not let my son die for the sake of your vengeance!"
"His daughter? Who are these guys?" Shinn asked.
"I thought so. Only one group would be insane enough to do this; the diehard fanatics of Patrick Zala." John grimly answered. "The maniacs that believe that the only way for Coordinators to live safely is to get rid of every last Natural. They're no better than Blue Cosmos."
"You bastard! Don't you dare compare us to them!" an insurgent shouted, racing towards John with his sword.
John fired a single shot, piercing the GINN. "There is no reasoning with these mad men. Just shoot them down."
Athrun pulled out his tomahawk as Sato swung his sword at him. "Have you forgotten about the innocent lives thrown away here? You're living in a damn dream world! Laughing with the butchers who caused this! You bastards!" Sato ranted as he clashed with Athrun. "The cowardly successors of Clyne have deceived us! They've corrupted and weakened ZAFT! Can't you see that? Patrick Zala knew it all along! The only truth path for Coordinators is one that he had chosen for us!"
Images of the Bloody Valentine, his father and his madness, and GENISIS and the devastation it brought. His father's legacy to the world was just more insane and irrational hatred.
The other remaining GINN lunged at Shinn with his sword. Shinn sidestepped the GINN and hacked off it's sword arm. But that didn't stop the pilot. The GINN jumped Shinn, wrapping it's legs around the Impulse. A moment later, the GINN self-destructed, throwing Shinn back.
"Shinn!" Athrun called out.
At that very moment, a large chuck of the GINN hit the Meteor Breaker, triggering it. The drill descended into Junius Seven. But nothing happened...
"Initiating Descent Sequence Phase Two." Arthur said as the Minerva's wings folded and it entered the atmosphere.
"What about the Impulse and those other machines?" Talia asked.
"I can't locate them, ma'am" Meyrin reported.
"No... Athrun!" Cagalli called out.
"They'll suffer this time! The Naturals will feel our wrath!" Sato screamed as he grabbed the leg of Athrun's ZAKU, pulling him down.
Suddenly, Shinn appeared, slicing the leg off with his beam saber and kicking Sato to the surface of Junius Seven. Shinn grabbed the ZAKU and headed for the Minerva alongside John and Flay. At that very moment, a massive crack formed from where the last Breaker had gone through. Splitting the large half of the colony in two.
Athrun, Shinn, Flay and John fought to reach the Minerva. "Dammit! Those lunatics delayed us too long." John said. "We aren't going to make it."
"No. We can make it." Shinn said, pushing the Impulse to the limit.
But gravity's pull was too strong and the four fell to Earth.
Somewhere in the Marshall Islands
"Now hurry up everyone." Lacus calmly said, helping Caridad and Reverend Malchio usher into the shelter under the church.
"What is it? Where are we going?" one child asked.
"Oh I know! We're going shopping, aren't we?" a little girl asked.
"Aw... But I want to play." another said.
Lacus smiled. "No. We're not going shopping. There's a storm coming. So we need to go under the church to wait it out." she said sweetly.
Lacus glanced at the deck of their house, expecting Kira to be there. But he wasn't. The smile dropped from her face. "Kira?" she called out, searching for him.
Lacus quickly spotted him. Kira was standing on the beach watching the first pieces of Junius Seven streak across the sky. But his eyes were soon drawn further upward, where a massive object was glowing fiery orange as the largest pieces of the Bloody Valentine's remnant descended vengefully on the Earth.
(Author's Note) I know it's been forever and a day since I updated this story. But I just recently started to regain my interest in this story and my Kai Uchida character. I hope you all enjoyed this chapter, though I'm sure many of you are probably complaining about how much of it I kept the same in regards to Akatsuki Leader13's version. If you want me to go in and change things a bit more than I have so far, just say so.
So, what do you think of the power of the Mirage Gundam now that you've seen what it can do against common mobile suits? I hope I've at least piqued your interest in Kai's character and his past history.
Until next time...