Legal Stuff: The people at Mainframe made and own ReBoot. I just like playing around with their characters.

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The Best of Both Formats


The 18th Angel

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111- Epilogue

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      "You know you can't leave Mainframe." Bob said. "And we'll be keeping an eye on you."

      "Yes, yes. I understand." Megabyte yawned. "May I go now?"

      "Yeah, get out of here." Bob said.

      "I sense hostility, Guardian. You're not still mad are you?"

      "What, because you created a life and then destroyed it without blinking? How could I possibly still be mad about that?"

      "You can convert me into whatever format you wish Bob, but you cannot change who I am." Megabyte said. "Eventually, I will come back to haunt you."

      "Go." Bob growled. "Get out of my sight."

      Megabyte smiled and strolled calmly for the door. "Farewell Bob. I'll be seeing you around."

      Bob closed his eyes, forced himself to take calm, deep breaths, and counted to 1010. When he opened his eyes, Megabyte was gone. Bob sighed. He didn't need Megabyte to tell him that he hadn't heard the last of him.

      "Bob!" Enzo burst through the door, tackling Bob before he could say a word. "You gotta come to the hospital quick! It's amazing!

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      There was already quite a crowd around the hospital bed when Enzo dragged Bob into the room. Phong was awake, sitting up in bed and smiling at his friends. He looked up when Bob came in.

      "Ah, there you are, my son." He said. "It is good to see you again."

      "Phong." Bob whispered, smiling. "You're all right."

      "Yes. Evidently I will recover fully." Phong said. "Lucky me."

      "We thought we were gonna lose ya there for a while." Mouse said.

      "I missed you so much, Phong." Dot hugged him, careful not to disturb the wounds on his chest.

      "Well...I missed you to, child." Phong said. "Or I would have, had I been conscious."

      Dot smiled and hugged him again. It was the first time Bob had seen a smile cross her face since Terabyte vanished. Maybe things would finally get back to normal now; or as normal as they ever were in Mainframe.

      "So..." Phong said, looking around the room. "What did I miss?"

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      They sat side by side on the bench in Kits Sector. The streetlamps turned night into twilight. Bob looked over at Dot. Phong's recovery had cheered her, but deep down inside, she was still in mourning.

      "Dot." He began. "I..."

      "What's it like?" She asked.


      "The Web." She turned to him. "I never wanted to know before..."

      "And you don't want to know now." Bob said.

      "I just... If you survived, and Megabyte survived..." Bob could see where this was going. "Is there any way...could she...?"

      "I don't know." Bob said.

      "Please don't lie to me Bob." Dot said. "You were there. You know what it's like."

      Bob sighed. "Megabyte and I both had Guardian code that protected us." He finally said. "She doesn't."

      "So she's deleted then?"

      "I wish things were different." Bob said. "But I don't see how she could survive. She's gone."

      Dot nodded, a few tears escaping from her eyes. "At least she's not in pain any more." She said. "She's in a better place.

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      System of Workstation

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      The bar was dirty, crowded, smoke filled, dimly lit, and absolutely no place for a lady. So when the tiny female Sprite stepped through the swinging doors, all eyes fell on her immediately. The bar's owner, Bryce, took a moment to study his new customer on the assumption that something bad was going to happen now that she was here. In a room full of drunken men, small, good-looking women *always* caused trouble, whether they intended to or not.

      The girl wore a long cloak with a large hood pulled up over her head. Bryce's judgment of her age was based solely on her height and build; he couldn't see enough of her to make an actual estimate of how old she was. All he could see was her face, heavily cloaked in shadows. It was a pretty face, with delicate cheekbones, a small, slightly upturned nose, and full, pouting lips. Her skin was flawless as well, bright green with just a hint of blue. A few locks of darker green, almost black, hair dangled in front of her eyes. The eyes themselves were covered with a pair of dark sunglasses that the girl did not remove despite the dim lights in the bar. If forced to guess, Bryce would have placed the girl at about 1.7, give or take an hour.

      She crossed the room, not walking so much as gliding, moving effortlessly and with impossible gracefulness. Everyone in the room followed her with their eyes. A few lecherous chuckles and catcalls arose as she made her way to the bar. She took a seat on the stool directly across from Bryce. She tapped the counter twice and looked up at him expectantly.

      "None of the cheap stuff." She finally spoke. "Real I/O."

      "You're a little young for that, aren't you Missy?"

      The mysterious Sprite smiled. "I'm old enough to know better." She almost let out a girlish giggle.

      Bryce frowned at that, but he poured the drink anyway and slid it across the bar. The girl took the glass and downed it in a single gulp. She motioned for him to pour a second shot.

      "I ain't never seen a pretty thing like you drink like that." A half-drunken Sprite said, settling down on the stool next to her.

      "Not surprising." The girl smiled. "If you live a hundred hours, you'll *never* see *anything* like me."

      "Really?" The man seemed mildly amused. "Well then how about lettin' us see a little more of you." He reached for the hood of the girl's cloak. Suddenly, the man jerked his hand back as if he had been slapped. Judging by the sound of skin striking skin, he had been. But Bryce hadn't even seen the girl move.

      "That's a no-no." She said sweetly.

      "You little bitch!" the man yelled. "How did you do that?"

      "I don't like you." The girl said. "Please go away now."

      "No way sweetheart!" The man yelled. "You tell me what you did to me!"

      Once again, Bryce didn't see the girl move, but suddenly she had the man's wrist clasped in one small hand. The drunk cried out in pain as the girl twisted his arm around, drawing on strength that a bitmap her size simply couldn't contain.

      "You're making me cranky." She said, leaning over and speaking directly to her captive. "Go away before I get mad." Her last word was punctuated by the sound of the drunk's wrist breaking. He cried out and fell to the floor. As soon as she let go, the man ran from the bar, looking over his shoulder in fear and disbelief.

      The entire bar had gone silent. The cloaked girl turned back to Bryce. She gestured toward her empty glass.

      "I'm in a wait state here."

      Bryce wasted no time in pouring her another I/O shot.

      "You know." He said. "You don't look like you need advice. But that isn't the best way to make friends."

      "I'm just having a bad second; he was making it worse." She replied, draining the glass. "I actually have a really nice personality."

      "Is that so?"

      The girl nodded. "In fact..." She reached up and removed her sunglasses, revealing a pair of pure green eyes with burning red pupils. "It's positively...infectious."

***THE END***

Author's Note: As you can probably tell from the last section, this is NOT actually the end. The story is continued in part 2; 'Queen of the Crashed', which will be appearing on FFN soon.