Mobile Suit Gundam/Kido Senshi Gundam: Peacekeepers

By: Ominae

Rating: T


All characters and machines of the various Gundam eras belong to Yoshiyuki Tomino, Hajime Yatate, Fumihiko Takayama, Takeyuki Kanda, Umanosuke Iida, Mitsuko Kase, Takashi Imanishi, Masashi Mukaeda, Mitsuo Fukuda, Seiji Mizushima, Susumu Yamaguchi, Satoshi Konno, Junichi Kamino, Bandai, Level 5 and Sunrise. All characters and machines of the various Super Robot Wars games belong to Banpresto and Winkysoft. All characters and machines of the SD Gundam G Generation series belong to Namco Bandai Games. The use of Appleseed concepts/organizations/etc. belong to Masamune Shirow. The use of Full Metal Panic! concepts/organizations/etc. belong to Shoji Gato. The use of Ghost in the Shell concepts/organizations/etc. belong to Masamume Shirow and Kenji Kamiyama. All weapons/equipment of NeoTokyo belong to Studio RADI-8. All other characters are under my jurisdiction.


Mithril launches a rescue operation to secure Rasa while fighting continues to take place in the cities of Azadistan, even as the Titans intervene to put an end to the entire mess caused by Ali. Can Mithril save the Imam in time? Will the fighting in Tehran seize to end? Stay tune to this chapter to find out.

Chapter 18: Rescue Mission

Cave Hideout, somewhere in Azadistan, Middle Eastern Union

"Load the hostage up when the boss gives the word!"

"On it!"

Ali watched as his men were now making preparations to load Rasa up on a pickup after they checked the outskirts of their hideout to make sure no one was trying to move in against them.

"Is everyone ready?" Ali asked one of the armed men with him.

"Yeah, boss. We're just checking to make sure no one's around to be a witness."

"Alright, deal with it."


Cabin, Mithril G2E9 tiltrotor, somewhere in Azadistan, Middle Eastern Union

The SRT operators deployed on the tiltrotor got their Seburo C-30s ready when the loadmaster informed them that they were almost near their destination.

"Alright, let's go over the plan one more time." Katina spoke to her Alpha Team subordinates when she used an electronic datapad to generate a 3D image of the area they were to be deployed in.

Russel sat patiently next to Katina when she spoke up. "We're going to be deployed in this area, which used to be the abandoned village's northern side since it's the closest to the mountains. But to preserve the element of surprise, we'll be deployed in the square so that the kidnappers won't be able to detect us. In addition, we'll have the tiltrotor's ECS system deployed."

Her 2IC then spoke up next. "Remember that our weapons have suppressors and brass catchers, which should hide our presence in the region. But we need to move fast. There's no doubt that the imam's kidnappers would try to take him away to another country as a future bargaining chip."

"Are we going to have support from the Hiryu Kai, sir?" Sheld Foley asked his superior if they would get reinforcements.

"The Hiryu Kai will deploy a couple of mobile suits from the Ptolemaios as our backup plan in case the kidnappers do flee with Rasa towards the border with Iraq or to a staging point where they can easily take him out of the country by sea."

"We need to rescue Rasa Massoud Rachmadi alive as soon as the operation begins." Katina stared at everyone in the cabin. "I don't need to remind you that failure is not an option that we can accept."

"Yes, ma'am!" All of the Alpha Team SRT operators replied in unison.

"Five minutes, captain!" The loadmaster shouted to Katina as the tiltrotor was now approaching its intended destination.

"Time to lock and load." Kuzzey had a grin on his face when he loaded a smoke grenade on his C-30's underbarrel grenade launcher.

"I don't know who's actually much creepier in battle..." Rachel Aiphath stared at Kuzzey, then at Sai since his facial expression indicates that he's ready for the upcoming fight.

"I'll go and toss a coin and say that you don't want to get in their way, especially when you're the bad guy." Tasuku sighed when he leaned back on his seat. "That's my take on it."

"Indeed it is." Eterna Frail softly said when she stared at Mark and Kira as they prepared their C-30s. "I'm quite surprise that the higher-ups were able to accept them."

"The only thing I'm surprised is why you're with the SRT." Sheld said when he spoke to Eterna. "Seeing that you don't seem to be the type who fights and everything..."

"There is a saying that appearances can be deceiving." Siegfried reminded his young SRT colleague on what he was talking about.

"Okay! We're here!" Katina shouted when she stood up from her seat with her C-30 slung on her right shoulder.

Square, Abandoned Village, somewhere in Azadistan, Middle Eastern Union

When the Mithril G2E9 tiltrotor started to land towards the abandoned village's square, the co-pilot immediately activated the aircraft's ECS system in order to avoid being visually and electronically detected from Ali and his forces. It has been many years since the use of ECS was implemented during the early years of the Cold War, which was then perfected before the Universal Era came rolling in that animals were not able to smell out a vehicle that used ECS camo with the exception of highly advanced anti-ECS equipment.

The invisible G2E9 deposited everyone in Alpha Team on the ground. By now, all of them donned balaclavas, ballistic goggles, tactical gloves and bulletproof lightweight combat helmets alongside their usual SRT BDUs and combat boots with elbow and knee pads, having the proper desert digital camos and plate carriers (At least all of them except for the goggles) to blend in with their surroundings. In addition, they were equipped with headsets to communicate with either each other or with the Hiryu Kai.

Katina gestured to her via hand signals to move in towards the northern side of the abandoned village. All of them complied and moved in while the tiltrotor flew back to the Hiryu Kai with its ECS camo still on.

Alpha Team moved swiftly through the empty streets of the village, taking care to check each and every corner and alley to ensure that no one was going to ambush them.

It's going to be dark soon. Katina sighed when she led the team through a makeshift roadblock that consisted of abandoned vehicles being used as anti-personnel roadblocks. We need to move fast. I just hope our NVGs would work here.

The blonde woman took the lead in going through the roadblock by leaping over it, something that Mithril combat personnel learned to do as part of their training prior to indoctrination to either the SRT or the PRT.

Time to begin Operation Desert Rescue.

Bridge, MSC-07 Albion, somewhere in the Red Sea near the shores of Eritrea, North African Union

Synapse praised and prayed silently to whatever god that he can think of since the Albion had successfully taken down NAU Air Force Infestuses and used the confusion to get away safely.

We can probably use the sunset and the incoming evening to hide ourselves from any further NAU incursions. Good thing the ship wasn't that damaged that we can fix them right now.

"Looks like we're in the clear, sir." Ivan said from his station as the Albion's helmsman. "So far, so good. We should be near the Indian Ocean in a few hours by now."

"I only hope that is the case, captain." Synapse sighed when he turned around to see that Cagalli had stormed into the bridge alongside her bodyguard, his name revealed to everyone on board the Mithril ship as Ledonir Kisaka, an Orban Defense Forces commissioned officer with the Orban Army's 21st Airborne Brigade, which serves as its elite paratrooper unit. The man still had his messy appearance on since he had been secretly ordered to look after Cagalli under the legend of a Desert Dawn guerrilla stationed in Libyan territory.

He also revealed that Cagalli's real name is Cagalli Yula Attha, the only daughter of Orban Prime Minister Uzumi Nara Attha. This revelation brought much gossip and trouble to the crew, wondering what the First Daughter is doing in North African Union territory with Desert Dawn guerrilla forces.

"Now see here...!" Cagalli was now fuming mad at Synapse when she pointed her right index finger at him. "I demand to know what your forces are doing here, escorting me all the way back to Orban territory..."

"Miss Attha." Synapse calmly replied, trying to act nicely around her since she's the daughter of a known politician in the Earth sphere. "Please try to understand that things are already flaring up in the Middle East and North Africa. Your father can't afford to lose you if ZAFT or renegade Zeon factions were able to unmask your identity and make it public."

"Hey! I was already doing very well, thank you very much." The blonde girl huffed when she heard the officer's explanation, even though she knew that he was ordered by his superior to look after her until the Albion reached Orban territory. "Besides, I was already fighting in the NAU for a very noble cause alongside my bodyguard here when your ship showed up out of the blue!"

"My apologies, Colonel Synapse." Kisaka tried to intervene in the bridge before either the old OMNI veteran officer or the heir to the Attha family would start to get into a shouting match. "Ms. Attha's trying to explain her point at best."

"I understand, Captain Kisaka." Synapse nodded when Kisaka told Cagalli to wait outside the bridge. She grudgingly agreed before she stepped out, waiting for her bodyguard outside.

"So, Colonel. Do you think that we'll be able to pass through Human Reform League territory without having an incident with either Zeon Republic or ZAFT forces to intercept us?" Kisaka raised the question since the Albion was due to arrive at the Indian Ocean very soon.

Synapse long thought about Kisaka's question before he replied. "I think it's possible. While we're going to be out of NAU territory soon, I don't doubt in my mind that ZAFT's NAU command will pass the message along to their comrades based in the UOS. We'll plan out every contingency that we can think of."

"Thank you, Colonel. I'd like to render out any kind of assistance if needed." Kisaka snapped into attention and saluted Synapse.

"Of course, Captain Kisaka. It's very much appreciated." Synapse returned the salute.

Outskirts of Abandoned Village, somewhere in Azadistan, Middle Eastern Union

It took an hour to make the trek from the abandoned village interior to the outskirts due to security reasons to maintain the element of surprise. Since darkness was already looming over Azadistan, everyone in Alpha Team was ordered to don their night vision goggles. They were now viewing their environment in green.

"All clear." Russel whispered when he knelt next to Katina behind a very large rock. She gestured to her subordinates behind them as well.

Rachel Ransom peeked out from her hiding spot and gestured to Katina and Russel with hand signals that she spotted four armed men in a patrol, armed with IZHMASH AK-74Ms.

We need to take care of them. Katina leaned her back on the rock so that she would be looking at everyone in Alpha Team via NVGs.

The blonde Mithril SRT officer made the following hand signals to her subordinates that she needed volunteers to silently take down the four-man patrol before they can proceed further.

Let's see who's going to step up and volunteer to take out the roving patrol.

Rachel Aipath, Sai, Siegfried and Kira all volunteered to take out the patrol. They crouched and walked silently as the roving patrol was about to pass their position. The four SRT operators wielded combat knives, except for Sai since he drew out his karambit knife from its sheath.

As the patrol continued their work, their backs, turned, Siegfried lead the other three towards the rear of the roving patrol by crouching to lower their profile before they walked as fast as they can in order to be at arm's length when they were close to the patrol.

Siegfried gestured to his comrades to immediately move in and kill off the patrol.

Immediately, the four sprang towards the armed gunmen with the intention of killing them off.

Rachel and Kira took down the first two AK-74M-armed gunmen when they forced them on their knees before the two SRT operators used their combat knives to stab their necks. Sai and Siegfried did the same thing to the other two AK-74M-armed gunmen, with the former having a bit more style in his manner of sentry takedown when he twirled the karambit before he stabbed the target at the back. This was followed by twisting the karambit blade when it gutted the man further to ensure that he would go down quicker and easier.

"Sometimes, I think you're the most sadistic operative in the team." Siegfried whispered to Sai as the two dragged the dead bodies. Rachel and Kira did the same thing as well and dragged their corpses out of the open.

"Eh." Sai shrugged while he dragged the corpse. "I just try to be efficient."

"Sure, just try telling yourself that."

Bridge, Hiryu Kai, somewhere near outskirts of Abandoned Village, somewhere in Azadistan, Middle Eastern Union

Lefina, Sean and Kai observed the 3D map of the abandoned village and the surrounding mountains via 3D map on the tactical map table. Everyone else on the Hiryu Kai's bridge were on standby in case the ship needs to be relocated at a moment's notice.

"Looks like Alpha Team took down the tangos nearby." Sean surmised when he studied the 3D map, which showed Alpha Team slowly moving towards the mountains.

"It seems the intelligence we got from the Exia Gundam pilot is correct after all." Kai added, seeing that the team was already moving closer and closer to the mountains by the second.

"Yes, you're right." Lefina was right to give out the order to land near the abandoned village's square to avoid being compromised. "Speaking of which, what are your thoughts on letting Ms. Wang's retainer get involved with the operation?"

"Is she waiting for a reply?" Sean asked his CO.

"She currently is, Major Webley."

"I don't know if that's right for her to do so." Kai objected. "After all, isn't she suppose to be with Ambassador Corner in order to observe the situation in Tehran and report back on their findings for the General Council and Intelligence to analyze?"

"At this point," Lefina told Kai. "we need every available person we can get our hands on to help us break the siege and save the imam from being killed or kidnapped and taken to another country."

"Ma'am, shall I inform the bridge to make contact with Ms. Wang at once?" Sean asked Lefina after the latter had made her point.

"Please do, Major."

"Understood, Colonel Enfield."

Sean approached the bridge officers and spoke to Eun about making contact with Wang Liu Mei at once.

Near Cave Hideout, somewhere in Azadistan, Middle Eastern Union

Alpha Team made their approach towards the cave hideout used by Ali, using the trail that the patrols used to locate it, which was followed by disposing of the said patrols via CQC in order to weaken the enemy's battle strength and to dispose of them since they would be troublesome if any of the armed gunmen witnessed the team's approach towards their temporary hideout.

Katina raised her gloved hand up when she was receiving a transmission from the Hiryu Kai. At once, Russel motioned to the others to use a nearby ditch for cover. Katina followed close behind and hid in the ditch.

"This is Intleacht 1 to Óglach 1." The blonde woman heard the transmission on her headset. "Can you read me?"

"Óglach 1 here." Katina replied to Lefina's transmission. "May I ask what this is about?"

"Expect some additional reinforcements to aid you in securing Rasa Massoud Rachmadi in the operation."

"I... I'd like to object, Colonel. Frankly, I don't think that's a good idea."

"Captain, please. Whatever you do, don't shout." Russel whispered to his superior so that she can calm down and not resort to shouting. "We're still out in the open."

"Please hear me out, Captain Tarask." Katina sighed and agreed to follow her 2IC's suggestion. "We're going to run out of time and I need every available person with us in the region who's willing to help us in case the kidnappers are able to take the imam away. This is only a temporary measure until you can assess the situation and confirm that he's secured."

The Alpha Team commanding officer began to consider what her superior had said. While she feels that the team can use all the help they can muster to safely rescue Rasa and bring him back to Tehran before things could get worse, the blonde woman was worried that Lefina's actions could go against Mithril protocol. At worst, she could be placed by in a court-martial and strip her of her rank and position as the first commanding officer of the Hiryu Kai.

Oh well. Since their deployment was their first debut after Mithril announced its return as "M", it probably wouldn't hurt that the team could get reinforcements to back them up aside from Lockon and Setsuna.

"I understand, Colonel." Katina decided to listen to the orders of her commanding officer. She then added a condition for her to listen to. "But if the top brass wants to crucify me over having a civilian involved in this mission, then I'll tell them that it's your idea."

The woman couldn't believe what Lefina had told her when Katina said her thoughts to her superior. "Understood, Captain Tarask. I shall take responsibility if anyone goes wrong. For now, I want you to lead Alpha Team in there and secure the hostage."

Katina was surprised to hear her superior's reply. Wow... this woman is really full of surprises.

"Captain?" Russel whispered to Katina. "What now?"

Katina nodded and gestured to Russel to wait first before she replied on her headset, "Roger, Intleacht 1. Will proceed at once."

She ended contact with Lefina and motioned Russel to get close to him. Once that was done, she whispered to him. "Russel, tell the others to keep going. We should be almost to our destination."

"Yes, Captain Tarask."

Cabin, VTOL Plane, en route to Cave Hideout, Azadistan, Middle Eastern Union

"It seems that we got the coordinates of the Hiryu Kai's Alpha Team." Wang said to Hong Long as he piloted her personal VTOL plane towards the outskirts of the abandoned village.

"My mistress, does this mean that the commanding officer of the Hiryu Kai did not object to your idea?" Hong Long asked the Chinese woman after he landed the VTOL plane at a secluded spot where any hostiles could easily reach the VTOL and storm it to take Wang hostage.

"On the contrary, the colonel was more than delighted to have you on board as long as you listen to whatever they need you to do with the rescue mission." Wang shook her head when she replied to her retainer's question.

"Then I shall make the preparations." Hong Long bowed after he got out of the pilot seat. "Please take this in case someone may happen to me."

Wang was about to tell him not to say it, but she stopped herself. The black-haired woman understood what was at stake here, especially since Mithril will surely not unofficially acknowledge it when they'll take the credit for rescuing the imam.

"Understood, Hong Long." Wang accepted the small box from Hong Long before he left the VTOL cabin to make the needed preparations to depart to Ali's cave hideout.

When she opened the lid, the socialite saw that Hong Long had left a semi-automatic pistol for her. It appeared to have the shape of an Austrian-make Glock pistol that was good enough for her hands.

"Thank you, Gēge."

Outskirts of Cave Hideout, somewhere in Azadistan, Middle Eastern Union

Alpha Team had arrived safely after they took care of a couple of sentries, courtesy of Mark and Kira's skills with CQC. The takedown took at least less than 15 seconds, considering the augmentations given to them by COSMOS in order to act swiftly so that they can infiltrate and exfiltrate from the target area.

Katina crouched down at the main road and motioned to her team to stop and crouch to lower their profile.

Russel and the other SRT operators complied with Katina's hand signal as they stopped moving and crouched with one knee on the ground.

When Katina turned her head around, she pointed her gloved left index finger to Russel. It meant that she was calling for his full and undivided attention.

Russel nodded, who understood the hand gesture the officer made.

Next up, Katina gestured to Russel when she pointed her gloved left index finger at him. But afterwards, she held up her left index, middle and rings finger up high for him to see. She then did the same with her right hand.

Form up a team of six SRT operators at once, Russel.

Russel gave an affirmative nod to Katina before he faced the rest of the team and ordered six of them to come with him and the other six to proceed alongside Katina.

I understand, Captain Tarask. Moving out.

Cave Hideout, somewhere in Azadistan, Middle Eastern Union

"Move it, old man."

Ali watched one of his henchmen, armed with an IZHMASH AK-101 assault rifle, shoved a restrained Rasa by the back as he was forced to walk towards a waiting pick-up truck.

"Where are you taking me?" Rasa asked his captors, not liking what is going to potentially happen to him.

"Why the heck does it matter to you anyway, old man?" The AK-101-armed gunman said when he glared at him.

"I think it's time those bastards at Amalgam gave me an update or something." Ali glared at the satellite phone he held on his left hand. "They said that they'll give me a call later on what to do with the imam."

"Excuse me, sir." Another gunman armed with a Norinco Type 86S assault rifle approached Ali. "What do we do with the hideout once we're done transporting the old man?"

"Make sure the charges are taken care of and are ready to go." Ali gave out his order. "We need to make sure security forces from either Azadistan, the MEU or those peacekeepers can't find any traces of us. Things'll get worse if those bloody Titans will find us and get rid of us just to get a good reputation to the public."

The gunman nodded in reply. "I understand, sir. I'll get some people to check on the charges if they're still active."

"Do it now."

Princess Marina Ismail's Office, Azadistan Royal Palace, Tehran, Azadistan, Middle Eastern Union

Marina and Shirin had settled back into the royal palace, getting updates from the Royal Guard that things have been quiet in the capital with assistance from the peacekeepers now that the Titans have taken over command from regular Atlantic Federation and European Federation forces alike.

"Now that things are settled down with the Titans assisting our security forces to make sure the protests are dealt with, we can proceed to gathering more intelligence on Rasa's whereabouts." Shirin told Marina after she read a report from the Ministry of Interior and Local Government that anti-riot police officers have managed to subdue the violent protests with help from the Royal Guard while allowing the peaceful ones to disperse without any provocation.

"Has there been any word from our intelligence agencies if Mithril has made contact with them?" Marina asked her prime minister after she muted the HD television with an emergency news broadcast from the Azadistani News Channel or the AZNC that the police have found and secured a suspicious vehicle near the main headquarters of the Royal Guard, which turned to be a vehicle-based IED.

"Not that I'm aware of, princess." Shirin replied. "But hopefully they were able to make some progress."

Two plainclothed bodyguards from the Royal Guards' Royal Bodyguard Protection Group or BPG, who wore black suits and Oxford shoes with white dress shirts and red neckties, eyed the door to Marina's office through their shades when they heard a knock from outside.

"Who is it?" One of the BPG bodyguards said when he heard the knock. The other one was ready to move at a moment's notice should there any trouble, considering the situation of the entire country right now.

"I brought some tea for the princess and the prime minister, sir."

The BPG bodyguard slowly opened the door and saw that it was one of the new maidservants recently hired after at least one of the older maidservants had to leave due to ill health, which resulted in the Royal Household Agency's decision to hire a few new ones. She had short brown hair and had typical Iranian features for her appearance.

"Get in."

The maidservant thanked the BPG bodyguard and brought the two teacups in and placed them on the coffee table when Shirin eyed her carefully.

"Excuse me." The prime minister addressed the maidservant. "But I specifically did not recall asking for a maidservant to come here and bring us tea for both of us."

The maidservant, after she heard the prime minister, immediately drew out a compact pistol from a hidden holster in her maidservant clothes.

"I'M HERE TO BRING YOU DEATH!" The maidservant shouted after she got her sidearm out, now aimed at Marina. The two BPG bodyguards started to draw out their taser pistols located at the hidden holsters on the right side of their hips.

"What?!" Shirin moved to shield Marina from being shot.

"DEATH TO ALL REFORMISTS...!" The armed maidservant shouted when the BPG bodyguards fired their taser pistols at her from the back.

"DEATH TO..." The maidservant felt the electrode darts hit her from the back, which sent several amounts of high voltage throughout her entire body.

"Princess, are you alright?" Shirin asked Marina when the bodyguards checked the downed assassins for a sign of pulse.

"I am." Marina nodded. "But why would she do this..."

"It seems that things are going to turn for the worse."

"She's got some pulse." A BPG bodyguard told his colleague. "Call in the others and make sure that they get some cuffs in."

"Got it." The other BPG bodyguard went to use the PTT button clipped on his suit to request for assistance in Marina's office, which included paramedics and an armed squad of Royal Guard soldiers.

Makeshift Armory, Cave Hideout, somewhere in Azadistan, Middle Eastern Union

Russel and the rest of his SRT team, composed of Tasuku, Kira, Kuzzey, Eterna and Rachel Aiphath, managed to infiltrate Ali's cave hideout from another cave entrance, which was patrolled by one sentry. The problem was, however, taken care of when Russel himself crept behind the Type 86S-armed gunman when he turned his back to conduct his patrol route from the side cave entrance all the way back inside.

Nothing personal. Just trying to save a country from going to civil war.

The man was quick to snap the gunman's neck without making any unnecessary noise. Eterna and Kuzzey worked together to drag the corpse by using his arms before they dumped him behind the rocks.

"Move out." Russel whispered to his subordinates. "We'll need to move in before we launch the rescue op."

Together, he and the other five moved in a straight line formation because the cave entrance did not offer much space for moving around. The only thing they needed to worry was whether they might trigger any traps. With this in mind, Russel gave strict instructions to the entire team to move behind him at a normal pace and to not either move fast or ahead of him until he can visually confirm that the path ahead was clear.

The other team, comprised of Katina, Siegfried, Mark, Sai, Sheld and Rachel Ransom, were still working on infiltrating the cave hideout from another cave entrance that was vulnerable with one sentry since the ex-KPSA terrorist is not expecting any assault towards them any time soon.

Two tangos ahead.

Katina pointed out the AK-101-armed gunmen guarding the main path towards the central area of the cave hideout before they made themselves scarce. Luckily, Katina's team found a hiding spot in the makeshift armory that was now empty of weapons since they were transferred out. The team waited until the two gunmen would walk pass by the entrance.

Sheld and Rachel made sure that their C-30s were secured and slung behind their backs. Afterwards, they silently drew out their combat knives and crept out of the makeshift armory. They charged in and stabbed the gunmen twice after their mouths were covered so that they can't scream while the two SRT operators silently killed them.

The blonde officer pointed to Mark and Sai to move out and assist Sheld and Rachel to get the corpses dragged in before anyone else can spot their handiwork.

"We're almost there, ladies and gentlemen." Katina whispered when she peeked her head out to check if the coast is clear. "Let's not keep our hostage waiting for us."

She took the lead in moving out towards the central area of the cave hideout. Siegfried was the first to follow before the others followed him out of the makeshift armory towards their destination.

Bridge, TS Nicosia, outskirts of Azadistan Army Zayer Base, Tehran, Azadistan, Middle Eastern Union

Everyone working in the Nicosia's bridge already had a change of crew an hour ago since they were all working for more than 24 hours due to the ongoing situation in Tehran, with the exception of the CO and the XO.

"Here's our current situation regarding what's happening in Tehran for the past few hours, ma'am." Gisele was being debriefed by her XO after she took some leave to get some rest since their intervention into Azadistani territory gave local security forces the opportunity to round out the violent protests before they made things worse in Tehran.

"All right, major. Start off with the recent events involving any of our forces." Gisele stared at a 3D map of Tehran from the bridge's tactical map table.

"Yes, Lieutenant Commander." The XO nodded when she pointed to the downtown area of Tehran from the 3D map. "Since the deployment of our mobile suits and infantry to the downtown core, this has resulted in the withdrawal of Atlantic and European Federation forces. This only leaves OZ mobile suits and infantry alongside our forces."

"Is there any words regarding the regulars?" Gisele asked her XO.

"For now, they've withdrawn to various Royal Guard facilities throughout Tehran. They'll be ready to be deployed again at a moment's notice if we should need them."

"Ma'am!" The communications specialist shouted for Gisele's attention through his seat. The Caucasian Titans soldier, who was in his late 30s, had short brown hair and Caucasian complexion. "I'm getting word from our forces in the downtown area that there's been an assassination attempt against Princess Ismail!"

"When did it happen?" Gisele asked the communications specialist, who was busy listening through his headset.

"Only a few minutes ago!" The communications specialist replied, who was still listening to another incoming transmission on his headset. "The Royal Guard's got the assassin subdued and they're currently interrogating her!"

"Check on our forces to see if they have a new update on the situation." Gisele gave her new order to the XO.

"Yes, ma'am."

Cave Hideout, somewhere in Azadistan, Middle Eastern Union

Katina and Russel's teams have managed to infiltrate the central area of Ali's cave hideout, in time to watch the gunmen force Rasa onto the pick-up truck. And since the area had lights, they both ordered their subordinates to seize using their NVGs at once since they can see their surroundings pretty well.

Russel checked if his C-30's UBGL has a smoke grenade loaded. The others did the same likewise before Katina made contact with Russel on his headset.

"Do it now, Russel. Looks like they're going to load up Rasa and try to get away from Azadistani territory as much as possible."

Russel went to look for Katina, who took cover with her team behind a stack of crates and benches. He knew that from the transmission that it was time to act.

Get ready.

The 2IC of Alpha Team shouldered the C-30 and got ready to pull the trigger of the UBGL. The other SRT operators under him did the same thing likewise.


Russel immediately took aim with the UBGL's ladder sight at the center of the cave hideout. He then fired his smoke grenade round at Ali's forces.

Katina's team did the same after Russel's team fired their UBGLs. She immediately exposed herself and fired her UBGL to unload a smoke grenade.

Bridge, Hiryu Kai, somewhere near outskirts of Abandoned Village, somewhere in Azadistan, Middle Eastern Union

"Alpha Team's already engaging the hostiles." Sean approached Lefina and Kai at the tactical map table.

"All right. I'm updating the map now." Kai went to work in updating the 3D map to show that everyone in the SRT's Alpha Team were now engaging the armed hostiles.

"I also got word from Wang Liu Mei that her retainer should be starting to engage the armed hostiles." Sean told the two officers. "The same thing with the Exia and the Dynames, although they'll be there in case the terrorists try to engage our forces via mobile suit."

"Let's just hope that we can get out of here safe and sound."

"Colonel!" Eun ran towards Lefina's position on the bridge. "I've just gotten word from our informants in Azadistan. There's been an assassination attempt against Princess Marina Ismail in Tehran."

"When did this happen?" Lefina asked the Hiryu Kai's communications specialist.

"A few hours ago. Currently, the assassin's detained by the Royal Guard for interrogation. The Titans are on their way with someone to interrogate her."

"See if you make contact with one of our observers in Tehran at once. And get me a status update on the situation in the capital."

"Yes, ma'am."

Cave Hideout, somewhere in Azadistan, Middle Eastern Union

"What in the world?!"

Ali shouted after he saw the SRT operators launch smoke grenades at him. This, in turn, obscured his vision. But he was not the only one who's having a hard time in looking around.

"Oy! Smoke grenades!" Ali coughed when he tried to use his hand to clear the gray smoke. I can't see a goddamn thing from here!


The red-haired mercenary couldn't figure out who shouted the order, but he was sure that they're special forces deployed to rescue Rasa.

"GET HIM OUT OF HERE!" Ali shouted as a gunman tossed to him a loaded Type 86S for him to use.

"Open fire!" Katina gave out the order.

In response, Alpha Team opened fire with their C-30s in single shot mode to avoid hitting Rasa in the assault. This forced Ali to slowly walk backwards while he fired the Chinese-made assault rifle. He didn't know if he scored a hit. But as long as he can get them to duck down and not fire back, it was okay since they were almost done with loading Rasa onto their getaway vehicle.

"BOSS! WE GOT TROUBLE!" One of the gunmen shouted to get Ali's attention.

"WHAT KIND OF TROUBLE?!" Ali shouted back in reply as he was forced to take cover behind an overturned long table.


A swift kick took out the gunman on the truck bed where the detained hostage was.

"Who are you?" Rasa demanded when he saw Hong Long, who wore a black eyemask that covered his eyes. Otherwise, he still wore his purple changshan suit and pants with black leather shoes on with his hair in a ponytail when he hopped onto the truck bed.

"Don't worry, sir." Hong Long assured the imam when he took out another gunman on the truck bed, who tried to use the AK-101's buttstock as a melee weapon, after the Chinese man executed a sharp chop to the gunman's neck, followed by a fast and swift roundhouse kick to the right temple. "I'm working on behalf of the covert peacekeeping force called "M"."

"M?" Rasa said, confused on the name of the organization while Hong Long worked on removing the ropes that restrained the imam's wrists since his arms were placed behind his back. "What is... this M organization that you speak of, young man?"

"Everything will be explained in due time, sir."

Alpha Team kept moving in, firing their C-30s as they advanced in order to corner Ali and his henchmen and take them out of commission.

"Shit!" Ali fired the Type 86S with his right hand, which held the assault rifle's pistol grip, as he made his retreat towards his parked mobile suit. "Everyone, fall back! Fall back!"

Command Center, Mithril Freiceadan Base, Lagrange 4, Space

Kowen had personally observed the entire operation proceedings from both in Azadistan and in the Indian Ocean. Berserk had entered the command center and saluted all personnel who greeted him with a salute.

"General Kowen." Berserk greeted his superior when he stood to attention and saluted the African-American officer.

"Glad to see you're back, Berserk." Kowen returned the gesture when he saluted the ex-special forces officer.

"I've got word from intelligence." Berserk spoke to Kowen. "There was an assassination attempt on Princess Ismail in Azadistan."

Kowen nodded and replied to Berserk. "And I'll assume that Azadistan is going to censor the news?"

"That's what intelligence thinks. At least until Rasa is safely rescued and brought under our custody."

"We've made contact with Colonel Enfield in Azadistan and from what I've been told, she allowed Wang Liu Mei's personal retainer to join in the operation as we speak."

"Do you think the General Council will criticize her decision, sir?"

The commander of Mithril's Freiceadan Base stayed quiet after hearing Berserk's question.

Cave Hideout, somewhere in Azadistan, Middle Eastern Union

Seeing that the odds are not in his favor, Ali decided to cut his losses and escape to his mobile suit, parked in the cave hideout. He had the precaution of having a small passageway carved into the mountain, which led him to the makeshift mobile suit hangar.

"Of all the days..." Ali grumbled to himself as he started to get inside the cockpit of his custom Enact. "I better get inside." He then grabbed a remote detonator from his pants pocket and pressed a button to detonate a weak explosives charge, enough to seal up the passageway so that no one would try and follow him.

Meanwhile, things were doing well for Alpha Team as the SRT operators moped up the cave hideout. Hong Long took advantage of the chaos and the gunfire going around to incapacitate the armed gunmen by using well-aimed karate chops and kicks.

"HE'S GETTING AWAY! AFTER HIM!" Katina shouted when she saw him escape into the passageway near where the parked pickup. She then covered her face when she heard the explosives detonate.

"CAPTAIN!" Russel shouted to get his superior's attention after he personally gunned down the last armed gunman standing between him and the pickup, albeit a bit blinded by the smoke grenade earlier.

"HE'S GONE! GET SOMEONE TO CONTACT THE COLONEL!" Katina yelled before she ran up to the rubble and see if she can find way to remove them and gain access to the same passageway.

"Area is secured. I repeat, area is secured and we have precious cargo with us." Eterna was on her headset while she executed a swift kick to knock out a gunman who tried to reach for a discarded pistol. For that one, the white-haired SRT operator decided to use her boot to step on his head.

"I don't like where she's going with this." Kira could have sworn that Eterna had some kind of dark aura coming out of her.

"Yeah, man. I'd agree." Mark muttered to Kira as the two helped Hong Long get Rasa off the pickup truck bed.

Bridge, Hiryu Kai, somewhere near outskirts of Abandoned Village, somewhere in Azadistan, Middle Eastern Union

"Roger that, Óglach 10." Eun was quick to respond to Eterna's transmission when she gestured to Lefina, Sean and Kai that the operation was over with a success. Everyone in the bridge cheered and gave each other hugs or high fives. "Is there anything else?"

"This is Óglach 1." Katina was next to speak to Eun. "I think I have a positive identification on the honcho responsible for the kidnapping, but I think he got away. Most likely going for a parked mobile suit of his. Could be the custom Enact that took down Óglach 6's mobile suit recently."

"Understood, Óglach 1. Mobile suits stationed outside are now preparing rogue mobile suit."

"This is Intleacht 1." Lefina adjusted the microphone on her headset. "Rogue custom Enact is now trying to get away from target zone. I need both of you to intercept the mobile suit."

"Understood, Intleacht 1." The voice of Setsuna was heard on the transmission. "I'll head out to intercept."

"Same here." Lockon's voice was next before the two Gundam pilots/SRT operators from the Ptolemaios ended their connection with the Hiryu Kai.

"Major Kitamura," Lefina took off her headset and spoke to the mustached officer. "see if you can make contact with Frieceadan and contact the general. Tell him that we're done and we're about to extract Rasa back to Tehran."

"Understood, Colonel Enfield." Kai went to the bridge and spoke to Eun about making a connection to Freiceadan at once.

"All that's left is to figure out if the Exia and the Dynames can apprehend our mysterious instigator." Sean told Lefina when the former showed her the 3D map of Alpha Team getting out of the cave hideout towards a waiting tiltrotor with Rasa alongside. Only Hong Long was not present since he was only there to assist and thus, wasn't going to show up in the woman's field report after the situation in Azadistan is over.

Cabin/Cargo Hold, ZAFT-made Transport Plane, near Indian Ocean

Athrun, Dearka, Nicol and Yzak were already on the cabin/cargo hold of a ZAFT-made Transport Plane that took out from a friendly NAU Air Force-controlled base near the Libya/Chad border, which flew all the way towards the direction of the Indian Ocean after an assessment made by Martin determined that the plane won't be able to catch up with them via the Suez Canal.

The stolen mobiles were also on the transport plane, already set to go with Guul subflight systems ready and waiting in case of a need to be deployed from the air.

"Dammit. Of all the luck." Yzak was now beginning to complain. "Now the legged ship is starting to get away towards HRL territory and we're an hour away from being able to catch up with the ship."

"But Yzak." Nicol tried to persuade Yzak to listen. "Didn't you remember in the debriefing provided by Commander Waltfeld that the legged ship he saw isn't the same one he found from the intelligence photo provided by HQ back in Aprilius One."

"IT DOESN'T MATTER!" Yzak yelled while he raised his clenched fist in emphasis. "Once I'm out there, I'll put a total stop on the legged ship once and for all."

Athrun made his way to the plane's cabin since he was called for by the loadmaster.

"Yes, you needed me?" Athrun asked the loadmaster.

"I was told by the co-pilot that we're near the Indian Ocean." The loadmaster, who was a black-haired man with Caucasian features told Athrun. "We should locate the legged ship in a few minutes."

Athrun nodded. "All right. Thanks for the update."

Dearka spoke to Athrun when he came back from the cockpit. "Anything, Athrun."

"Co-pilot said that we're near the Indian Ocean." Athrun spoke to the blonde ZAFT Red. "So we should be good to go when we can see the ship."

"Now we're talking." Yzak had a grin on his face. "This'll be payback for what happened to us back in space after we jacked up OMNI's mobile suits."

A minute later, the loadmaster came up to Athrun and told him that they've spotted what appeared to be the legged ship and informed the ZAFT Reds to make the necessary preparations.

Athrun and the other three nodded and prepped their gear by wearing their pilot helmets for starters.

Bridge, MSC-07 Albion, Indian Ocean, en route to Indonesia, Human Reform League

Synapse had just returned to the Albion's bridge from a visit to the toilet when he just gotten word that radar spotted what appears to be a transport plane heading towards the ship.

"How long 'til the plane gets near us?" Synapse asked the crew when he took his seat.

"A few more minutes, sir." Jacqueline reported to Synapse. "And we're getting some word from one of our intelligence stations in Australia that ZAFT's Carpentaria base in the UOS is mobilizing its forces."

"This isn't good." Peter checked his CIC console. "The plane's getting closer and closer."

"Do we get the pilots to mobilize?" William faced Synapse from his seat.

Synapse thought about William's question before he gave the order. "Tell all of our active pilots to mobilize and get ready to be on standby. Don't forget that we'll be facing off against water-based mobile suits and submarines."

"Yes, sir!" William went back to his headset and spoke to everyone on the Albion via microphone.

Cabin, Mithril G2E9 tiltrotor, en route to Tehran, Azadistan, Middle Eastern Union

Rasa had been placed on a seat in the cabin of the same G2E9 tiltrotor that picked up Alpha Team, which was once again deployed from the Hiryu Kai, and now were on the way back to Tehran. Hong Long did not come with them since he went back to Wang's VTOL via another route. The ECS was once again activated after it took off from the abandoned village.

"As-salamu alayk, Rasa Massoud Rachmadi." Katina greeted Rasa when she bowed a bit in front of the imam as a sign of courtesy.

"Wa alaykumu s-salam." Rasa greeted Katina when he lightly bowed his head to her. "I suppose that I should thank you for saving my life."

"Not at all, sir." Katina took a seat next to him while the others were busy checking and making sure their weapons and gear were accounted for.

"And we are heading back to Tehran?"

"Yes, sir. My superiors have contacted Prime Minister Bakthiar and have arranged for a meeting at the Royal Palace as we speak."

"Thank Allah that we were all able to get out of this alive."

"Captain." Russel approached Katina and whispered to her. "Got word from Exia and Dynames that they weren't able to pursue the custom Enact since it got away."

Katina nodded.

"Is there something that I should know about?" Rasa asked the masked officer.

"Nothing to worry about." Katina reassured Rasa. "It's something that we need to follow up on."

"Whoever you are," Rasa placed a hand on Katina's shoulder. "I wish to thank you and your colleagues for saving me and Azadistan from going into a civil war."

"It is nothing." Katina accepted Rasa's thanks. "It's something that everyone in my team is prepared to do for world peace, especially since things got worse after the escalation of the OYBW."

"Indeed. I just hope things won't get too far."

"We're almost approaching the outskirts of Tehran!" The loadmaster shouted to Katina from outside the cockpit.

"Keep our course straight to Tehran!" Katina shouted in reply. "And don't forget to keep our cover up!"

"Yes, ma'am!"

"What will happen once we arrive in Tehran?"

"Hopefully the natives won't try and kill us once we arrive at the Royal Palace to safely bring you back to see the princess."

Katina went to check her wristwatch. It was only a few hours after 12 AM when Alpha Team launched the rescue operation to secure the hostage. As far as she knows, it was only a couple of hours before the outskirts of Tehran can be reached.

It's going to be dawn soon. And Katina knew she needed to bring Rasa in safe and sound to make a good impression for Mithril's comeback on the world stage.

Princess Marina Ismail's Office, Azadistan Royal Palace, Tehran, Azadistan, Middle Eastern Union

"Princess! Madam Prime Minister!"

Marina and Shirin saw that the Defense Minister came inside the former's office, having a surprised expression on his face, after being allowed inside when he knocked four times at a rapid pace. The interior of the office has been cleaned up of the restrained assassin. Otherwise, the two BPG bodyguards were still present in the office.

"What is it?!" Shirin asked the Defense Minister.

"I've received word that Mithril has gained contact with us!"

"Mithril?" Marina said, hearing about the name.

Shirin asked the Defense Minister. "Has this been corroborated by our intelligence agencies?"

"Yes, Madam Prime Minister. The Titans and OZ contingents have also corroborated the transmission as well."

"Very well. Arrange things with the Royal Guard and tell them to be on immediate standby."

"Yes, ma'am."

The Defense Minister left Princess Marina's office, leaving Marina and Shirin alone.

"Well, princess." Shirin addressed Marina. "It's about time that we get ready for Rasa's arrival."

Marina went to address the BPG bodyguard. "Please get ready to move out. I'm about to meet with Rasa shortly."

"Yes, princess." The first BPG bodyguard replied.

So is the M organization's real name Mithril? Or is it a smokescreen so they can take credit for them?

Cockpit, GN-002 Gundam Dynames

"...I'm afraid we can't catch up to the custom Enact." Lockon addressed the Hiryu Kai via encrypted transmission, like all Mithril transmissions are always done. "Looks like our friendly pilot had some help."

"It has to be him." Setsuna murmured in the transmission.

"Who exactly, Setsuna?" The Irish SRT operator asked his Krugis colleague.

"Back when I was still living around here."

"I see."

"Understood, Lockon. Intleacht 1 will take over from here. Return back for now."

"Yes, ma'am."

Bridge, Hiryu Kai, en route to Tehran, Azadistan, Middle Eastern Union

Sarah handed Lefina a printout she received from his bridge station.

"Here you are." The blonde woman told the officer. "I've received this a while ago from Freiceadan."

"And this corroborates the information we got from Alpha Team in Azadistan?" Sean asked Sarah to make sure that they got the info right.

"Yes, Major Webley."

"Thank you, Lieutenant." Lefina thanked Sarah for her work. "You can head back to your station."

Sarah nodded and walked back to her bridge station when the colonel examined the printout.

"I never thought that we'd see him again." Lefina sighed when she read over the printout.

"You're not the only one, Colonel." Sean sighed as well. "I thought that this man would have been caught or killed."

Kai examined the printout and saw that it was in English, which is a second language that he's fluent in aside from his native Japanese. He then saw the name of the supposed mastermind for the crisis in Azadistan.

Ali al-Saachez

Bridge, MSC-07 Albion, Indian Ocean, en route to Indonesia, Human Reform League

"Colonel!" William shouted to Synapse as he checked his console at the Albion's bridge. "The pilots are ready to go!"

"Sir!" Peter also shouted to Synapse at the top of his voice. "I'm getting confirmation on the sonar that we got enemy aquatic mobile suits incoming!"

"All deployed from Carpentaria?" Synapse asked Peter.

"It appears so, sir." Jacqueline checked her CIC console to verify the identity of the hostile mobile suits. "I'm confirming a total of two UMF-4A GOOhNs and two UMF-5 ZnOs deployed."

"Which submarine did they come from?" Synapse asked Jacqueline.

"Appears to be confirmed as a Vosgulov-class submarine. It's identified as the Lebel."

"Looks like one of the submarines that ZAFT made recently in Carpentaria." Aclam commented when he eyed on the navigation map of the Earth Sphere. "But we should be nearing HRL territory in Indonesian waters soon."

"We need to get the pilots to buy us some time." Synapse murmured before he gave out the order. "Tell the pilots who can pilot the Waterproof Gundams to dive immediately and fight off the GOOhNs and ZnOs!"

"Understood, sir!" William made contact with the Albion's pilots to immediately get ready for combat.

"Sir!" Jacqueline reported new findings to Synapse. "I received an update that the stolen mobile suits are almost near our airspace."

"Make sure our anti-aircraft defenses are up when they get close and hit their Guuls! They aren't retrofitted to fly in the atmosphere!"

Cockpit, RAG-79-G1 Waterproof Gundam

Kou was in his Mithril pilot suit and helmet in his personal Waterproof Gundam cockpit when he got the order to dive into the waters of the Indian Ocean alongside Chuck, who was also on board another Waterproof Gundam to take out or delay the the GOOhNs and the ZnOs. So far, the two ZAFT-made aquatic mobile suits fired their torpedoes.

"Chuck, you okay?" Kou asked his comrade when he piloted his aquatic mobile suit to either dodge the incoming missiles or use its Underwater Beam Rifle to take out the missiles that he can't dodge.

"Yeah, I should be fine." The Japanese Mithril SRT operator saw through his monitor that Chuck armed his Waterproof Gundam with dual Beam Picks, being used to stab a GOOhN multiple times when it tried to use its Photon Maser High-energy Cannon at him in close range. This attack made the lone GOOhn and the other two ZnOs back off and prepare to approach the two from another angle. "I just hope Captain Bendt and that other pilots can hold the line with the Albion."

"Let's do this!" When Kou's Waterproof Gundam managed to successfully dive in underwater, he moved in towards one of the ZnOs by firing the Underwater Beam Rifle from the side to keep it busy.

"Thanks for the assist, Kou!" Chuck thanked his comrade as he used the distraction Kou provided to stab said ZnO when he got in close.

The ZnO didn't have time to react after being stabbed since Kou helped Chuck by using his own Beam Pick to stab the ZAFT mobile suit.

"Kou! We better move!"


The two moved their mobile suits a few seconds before the ZnO exploded. They were hit by mild shockwaves from the explosion, but were otherwise ready to continue with their mission to defend the Albion underwater until it can make it to HRL territory.

Starboard Launch Catapult Deck, MSC-07 Albion, Indian Ocean, en route to Indonesia, Human Reform League

Lucien was in the cockpit of his GM Cannon II Lucien Bendt Custom as he aimed the mobile suit's dual beam cannons at the water. "Okay! Time to take out those bothersome fishies bugging the Albion!"

"Sir, how long do we have to stay here?" Corporal First Class Van Asiliaino, pilot of the MSW-004 Gundam [Kestrel] and a supposed promising OMNI military cadet, questioned his superior when he fired the Kestrel's beam rifle at the water to take out the ZnOs.

"Until we can reach Indonesian territory. 'Sides, Mithril's got a forward base that we can use to refuel and stuff before we head to Orban soil. The area should be nearby since the FOB is in New Guinea Island."

Van sighed before he replied to Lucien. "I got it, Captain Bendt. I just wish reinforcements could get here."

"Don't worry, we just need to back up the guys underwater. We're lucky if we can take out the lone GOOhN and the two ZnOs despite that beam fire effectively can decrease over time after it gets into the water."

Another few shots from the beam cannons of the GM Cannon II Lucien Bendt Custom made a lucky shot when a GOOhN swam upwards towards the starboard launch catapult in order to fire its dual Mk.70 Supercavitating Torpedos at the Mithril-manned ship.

"Gotcha." Lucien chuckled. "Now we need to support the guys down there with the ZnOs remaining."

"Keep the pressure up." William made contact with Lucien via radio transmission. "We're near the EEZ waters of Indonesia. A few minutes more and HRL forces should be present to make them back off. We'll use the confrontation to slip pass them towards the Orb Union via ECS."


"Attention, Captain Bendt. New intelligence indicates arrival of stolen mobile suits from the Vesalius." Jacqueline made contact with Lucien.


"Around 3-4 minutes tops if they're not delayed."

"All right, Corporal." Lucien spoke to Van again. "We're about to get some special guests for this little trip. Let's make sure and give them a welcome when they show up."

"Understood, Captain."

Courtyard, Azadistan Royal Palace, Tehran, Azadistan, Middle Eastern Union

The G2E9 tiltrotor began to land at the empty courtyard, which was only filled with Titans and OZ mobile suits only, though there are Atlantic and European Federation soldiers present alongside Royal Guard forces to maintain the cordon around the palace and to make sure any protestors in the area would protest in peace.

"And here they are." Marina was present at the courtyard with Shirin with BPG bodyguards flanking the two. The tiltrotor landed and lowered a ramp, which faced the two women.

"It's Rasa." Shirin said when Russel and his team from the rescue operation ran down the ramp and fanned out to cover the tiltrotor from any armed attack, changing their weapons from assault rifles to semi-automatic shotguns. Katina and her team escorted the imam as he greeted Marina and Shirin. The Exia and the Dynames were seen flying overhead with its GN Drive engines to provide security in case a Titans/OZ mobile suit pilot would try to take the opportunity to attack either them or the tiltrotor.


Four Azadistani protestors, armed with IZHMASH AKMs, had somehow managed to storm the palace grounds and were ready to open fire on the tiltrotor.

In response, Russel gave the order to take on the protestors with non-lethal weapons to avoid hurting them since they're not the enemy. The SRT operators took aim with their shotguns and fired crowd control rubber buckshots. The protestors were surprised by this move after they got hit, which allowed the Royal Guard to move in and arrest the protestors.

Katina and Russel gestured to their teams to head back into the tiltrotor after the Royal Guards detained the armed protestors in plasticuffs.

The Exia and Dynames kept watch over the courtyard as the tiltrotor flew back up in the air, heading towards the outskirts to link up with the Hiryu Kai. Meanwhile, Marina and Shirin got Rasa back inside the palace, where they would sit down and talk down resolving the crisis in Azadistan.

Kati was on the ground leading a contingent of Atlantic and European Federation soldiers when she witnessed the whole thing while being in touch.

"Looks like things don't look so well for us." Kati said on her headset when she spoke to Zechs.

"Indeed. It looks like Mithril's going to have a win on this one in Azadistan." Zechs replied, somehow agreeing with the glasses-wearing officer.

"This is Lieutenant Commander Gisele Albert of the Titans." Gisele made contact with Kati from the Nicosia. "Can someone tell me what's happening down there at the Royal Palace, over?"

"This is Colonel Kati Mannequin of the European Federation Army." Kati replied to Gisele's transmission. "I think Mithril's managed to rescue Rasa and bring him back to Azadistani custody."

"I see. We'll probably withdraw since Rasa's return could lead to stability in the region."

"What are our orders?"

"Remain on standby with other regular Atlantic and European Federation forces. The Titans and OZ will take over until the UN Security Council can make the decision on what to do next."

Command Center, Mithril Freiceadan Base, Lagrange 4, Space

"Good work everyone. Make sure everyone is ready to go and regroup back to Frieceadan."

Everyone working at Freiceadan's command center clapped their hands before Kowen reached out to the conference table nearby and grabbed a manila envelope.

"General," Berserk addressed Kowen. "the only thing left is with the Albion's mission to bring back Uzumi Nara Attha's daughter back to Orban territory."

"I'm confident that Colonel Synapse has that taken care of." Kowen told Berserk before he handed him the envelope.

What the heck is this for?

Curiosity got the better of him when he opened the manila envelope and found two folders with the stamp TOP SECRET on it. A post-it note was found placed on the cover of one of the folders. The handwriting apparently came from Kowen himself:

Prepare them as soon as they can get back from the Hiryu Kai. We're about to launch a major operation in Von Braun.

Chapter 18 END

PS - Apologies for the wait. Lot of personal stuff that I had, which is the reason why this was delayed. Hopefully this chapter is fine and cool with you guys.

Lately, I've been thinking of doing Patlabor and Sakura Taisen stories with crossover, but that'll probably have to wait and see if this'll come to fruition or not. They lack more stories and they deserve some. But I'll read some good ones and not ones that are sloppily written.

Letting you folks know that since a Gundam 00 event is done, the next one is original in concept, but it'll have some references to the Gundam UCverse alongside some Gundam CEverse. I probably will have to mix in some AC since I need to bring Relena and Zechs into the light more in the next chapter. I guess that sooner or later, I better reveal the codenames of the other Mithril SRT/PRT operators and officers involved. For now, expect a bit of a timeskip with the next chapter in terms of events since I want the majority of the next chapter to be moving to Von Braun.

For now, read and enjoy this chapter. Let me know what you think, especially on the story or if I made some mistakes with grammar, punctutation, etc. Otherwise, I'll see you in the next chapter of "Peacekeepers".

Only music I cared about in terms of playing it over every single thing that I've written for the chapter is "Amami Airport (Vision Quest)", which is found at various soundtracks dedicated to Shin Megami Tensei: Soul Hackers by Shoji Meguro.