A/N: I'm just going to shut up and get on with the chap. XD
'Onward to a sacred battlefield, where justification and limits are revealed. Tools of steel in rage they conquer, with the killing of the victims' stalker. A justice rage for all to feel. With innocent cries and hatred squeals. The gore of evil seems to satisfy, when slain an' maimed and pacified…' Po chanted in his head to keep his mind clear of any thoughts that could betray him, in case Death Adder could read his mind.
Po drew his sword while Tigress simply got into the familiar stance everyone knew, and Death Adder merely chuckled, he was too cocky.
"Question is, are you?" Po retorted.
"Hmph, enough talk." Death Adder waved a hand, taking hold of his ax in both hands.
For a minute no one moved, all to be heard was breathing and slight shifts in stances. Po looked to his tiger and she nodded, both of the running forward. Death Adder stepped back to ready for the onslaught, Tigress took Po's hand and flung him toward the Dark Lord. Caught off guard at the move, Death Adder was unable to stop himself from being tripped up by the rolling black and white blur. As he sprung to his feet, Tigress pounced on the reptile and brought him into a choke-hold. To which Death Adder immediately grabbed him and wrenched her from his neck effortlessly, he brought her close to his face, snarling at her.
"Try as you might, you will never-" Death Adder cut himself off as Tigress slashed at his eyes with her claws, blinding the Dark Lord in one eye. "You bi-"
He was cut off as Tigress scratched at his face, and he threw her away from him and, like all cats do, she landed on her feet.
"Heh, you're all talk." Tigress crossed her arms. "You portray yourself as a high and mighty king and skilled combatant. Seems to me, you're all talk and no bite. If you are even able to fight like the warrior you claim to be, then by all means, show us."
Death Adder snarled, tightening his grip on his ax. He wiped the blood from his eye off of his face and glared at his hand, grinning nastily. Raising the blade of his ax, he swiped his hand across the flat of the blade, leaving a streak of crimson on it. He stabbed the ax into the ground, closing his usable eye and concentrated. For a minute, nothing happened…
And then Po fell to his knees, clutching at his chest. Liu, Shang and Li let out a cry in pain, like the Panda and struggled against the shackles. After a few minutes of hopelessness, the pain in their chests subsided and the warriors were left panting.
"What… What did you do?" Po demanded.
"For one, you are free of the Feral Virus…" Death Adder spoke, opening his eye and the single usable eye was glowing with red fire.
"However…" Death Adder's voice got deeper and more demonic. "It does not mean the trouble for you has ended. I will string you up by your intestines like a marionette and puppeteer you for my own amusement!"
Po growled, standing up slowly and gripped his sword so tight, his hand shook. Tigress looked at him, and it was not the first time she thought this, but Po was a true man. He was more of a man than Death Adder would ever be. And Po…
…Po was the man she wanted to spend the rest of her life with. She wouldn't want any other man at her side but him.
"Death Adder…" Po said slowly, sheathing his blade. "Look inside yourself. Tell me what you see."
"HA! Your little 'redemption talk' won't work on me, Dragon Warrior!" Death Adder's laughter echoed loudly throughout the throne room.
"Even the most corrupt-" Po began then stopped as Death Adder's ax planted itself firmly in front of Po, an inch or so more, and it would have skewered Po's foot.
"I see…" Po looked at the ax and surprised everyone at how unperturbed he was, he ran a finger over the flat of the blade. "What an impressive blade, if I do say so myself."
Death Adder's eye twitched. "… the hell are you babbling about, Panda! Shut up and fight me!"
"Well…" Po still emitted the patience and calmness of a wise sage as the golden ax returned to the Dark Lord. "With that tone of voice, I don't think I will."
"Po! What the hell are you thinking!" Tigress growled, and she blinked as Po put a finger to her lips.
"Shh…" He smiled. "I know what I'm doing."
As soon as he finished saying that, he held up a hand and caught the shaft of the ax without even looking. He smirked, looking back at Death Adder.
"Now now… where are your manners?" he chided lightly.
Death Adder's eyes widened in surprise, as did everyone else's.
Po… you are really starting to scare me… Tigress thought.
The Panda stood up straighter as Death Adder began to rush toward him, and Tigress got into stance until Po held up a hand.
"Let me, sweetheart." he said with such… assurance, that Tigress was halfway out of stance to stare at him. He seemed so… calm.
As Death Adder neared Po, the Panda pushed Tigress away from himself as the Dark Lord brought his fist down to crush him. Po sidestepped the move and let the fist crash into the ground, to which the panda retaliated with slamming the flat of the ax against Death Adder's face. The Dark Lord staggered to the side, but Po continued the onslaught by following through with striking skyward with the ax, with the flat of the weapon again. Death Adder's head spun, as this was the first time in a while he had felt true pain. As he staggered back a few steps, Po jumped and smashed the hilt of the ax into the center of the reptile's chest. Po ended that with a move called the 'bicycle kick' to Death Adder's face.
He stumbled back, panting heavily as he tried to regain his breath. His chest hurt more than he realized, as he knew there would be a bruise. He looked up and regretted it, as the ax was spiraling toward him. He attempted to stand, but… it was as if the Panda had absorbed his energy with those strikes. He raised a hand, and saw with horror as the ax sliced right through it and impaled him right in the chest. The top half of his hand fell to the ground, pooling what blood remained as the stump that was the remainder of his hand began to bleed heavily.
"It's over…" Po said to Death Adder.
"Hardly… finished…" the Dark Lord spat out, blood seeping down his chin. "This… this is just the beginning."
Po shook his head. "Trust me, with that wound-"
"I…" the Dark Lord stood up pulling the ax out of his chest and let the blood fall freely. This was a last resort… "I am… Death Adder!"
"We know you are, why must you continue to tell us?" Po sighed, and Tigress glared at the Dark Lord.
"I AM DEATH! I NEVER LOSE!" Death Adder shouted at the top of his lungs, and dark tendrils emanated from his form. An aura of darkness surrounded him, and the tendrils flicked this way and that, grasping at what it could and suddenly, the tendril's made a beeline for Po and Tigress.
Unable to move, out of sheer stupor, the tendrils wrapped around Po and Tigress and brought them to the Dark Lord. And then…
…Everything went black for Po and Tigress.
Raiden panted as he stopped to rest for a minute, Mei clung to his hand with no intention of letting go. And Raiden did not complain one bit. Masi and Kyrie were slightly out of breath, and Tigria and Revan simply leaned on one another, trying their best to stay standing.
"Masi, Kyrie… how far… are we?" Mei asked, trying to catch her breath. She groaned in annoyance as three soldiers spotted them and began their way with haste.
"Wait…" Raiden said, looking at a familiar Foodog.
"Halt! In the name of Death Adder! We must take you to the dungeons!" Three soldiers shouted with spears in hand, pointed at the small group. "Masi…? Kyrie? Traitors!" They screamed.
Raiden smirked. "Hey guys, I think we should start running here in a minute. I have no intention of going back to the dungeons."
"Why run? We can take them." Revan asked.
Raiden poked the Foodog in the eye. "That's why. Run!"
They did so and no sooner had they started down the path, the Foodog sprang to life and began tearing into the soldiers. In reality, it took only a few minutes. The Foodog made quick work of the incompetent men. After the last man was ripped to shreds, the statue returned to it's position, it's paws and teeth stained crimson.
Thanks Hàn… Raiden thought with amusement as they ran toward the throne room.
"I hope we're not too late to help them. What are the odds that they've already won?" Raiden chuckled.
"Shizuo! Come on!" Dimitri barked at his brother.
Shizuo sneezed, grunting and rubbed his nose. "This place smells like shit…"
"Watch your tongue!" A voice rang out. "Whether I am blind or not, that is no way to speak in front of a lady."
Shizuo and Dimitri turned, as it was safe for the moment due to the men retreating inside the castle for fear of Shizuo. A woman walked up to them, and both men were struck dumb. But Shizuo shook it off, regaining his composure. This woman was exceedingly beautiful, from her curves to her… Dimitri stopped himself right there, clearing his head of such thoughts. She was an ocelot, part of the cat family. She had dark spots on her light brown coat, the spots also dotting her tail. Her ears were tipped black and her eyes… her eyes were a pale ivory.
"Who are you?" Shizuo asked.
"My name is Lena. And I apologize if my eyes startle you." the ocelot called Lena replied. "I merely have one question."
"Shoot." Dimitri said, taking a look around to make sure none of Death Adder's men lurked about.
"Where is Tai Lung?" She asked, surprising them.
"He should be… in the throne room by now." Dimitri replied. "Why?"
The woman's eyes widened. "He's already there?"
"Yes, what's wrong?" Dimitri asked.
"I cannot stay here any longer, I must go to him." Lena shook her head, turning and beginning to run into the castle.
"Wait!" she stopped, albeit reluctant to do so. "If you're blind, then how will you-"
"I have my ways." Lena answered quickly, turning to run off before the Ox could stop her.
"That woman sure was strange." Shizuo commented, crossing his arms and sighing. "Why do you think she needed to see Tai Lung so bad? He's in the middle of a battle, and now that I think about it, she wasn't even armed."
"Even without a weapon, a person can still be powerful." Dimitri replied. "And maybe she is a partner of Tai Lung's, either an associate or friend."
Shizuo shrugged, and Dimitri knew that his brother didn't really care one way or the other.
Lena stopped for a minute, looking around and sensed Tai Lung's aura and ran in the direction she felt him. As she stopped in front of the Throne room double doors, she took a deep breath. But as she was getting ready to open the door she spun around and got into stance, glaring.
"Show yourself!" She barked and 'saw' twin panthers, a snow tigress, a hawk and a lynx step out from around the corner.
"I'm Raiden." one panther said. "We're on our way to stop Death Adder and-"
"Are you friends with Tai Lung?" Lena narrowed her eyes.
"Well, we're more acquaintance than friends. We haven't had any time to really become anything other than simple comrades on the battlefield." Raiden answered. "But I guess he would consider us friends."
"I see." Lena slowly got out of her stance. "Well, I don't want to keep him waiting."
She turned and opened the door without delay, feeling Tai Lung's aura emanating stronger and stronger as she ran down the corridor. She could sense Raiden and his group following shortly behind her, and she could also sense their uneasiness.
"Don't worry." Lena said, stopping to look at them for a second. "I'm not going to hurt you, I just want to see Tai Lung."
"And…" the second Panther spoke up. "You do realize there is a huge battle going on, right?"
"I am well aware of that, Revan." Lena replied. "I want to be with Tai Lung, I do love him after all. If this is the end, then I would want nothing more than to see the end with him. And if we shall prevail, then it will be all the more better."
Raiden nodded, and the rest of the group understood. She was Tai Lung's lover. And like Raiden was with Mei, she couldn't bear to be separated from Tai Lung for long. So like Mei had with Raiden, she probably defied the snow leopard's wishes and followed him here.
"I see." Raiden nodded again, prompting her to continue forward.
"That and… I had a vision." Lena said. "I'm supposed to help the Dragon Warrior after Death Adder."
"So… we're going to win?" Raiden asked and Lena shook her head.
"I don't know. Whether I was helping the Dragon Warrior in spirit or not, I was not sure." Lena answered. "Only time will tell and the truth of my vision will become clear."
Raiden nodded, helping her open up the giant double doors leading to the throne room. The Panther's jaw dropped in shock, the group accompanying Po was chained to the wall by shackles. Po and Tigress themselves were on the ground and so was the Dark Lord, whether unconscious or dead, he was not sure. He nodded to Lena who began to pick the locks of the shackles, but as she touched them, they instantly disappeared. She stood for a moment, confused as the rest were, then shook off the surprise and began to unshackle the rest.
"What the heck happened…?" Raiden asked, stepping up to Po. He was still breathing, that much was clear, but… this just didn't make any sense.
He lifted an eyelid, but his eyes remained straight ahead, as if focusing on something. He stood up, taking in the scene. Po and Tigress had collapsed side by side, and their hands were locked together. Death Adder lay in a puddle of his blood running from his hand… or was there a wound he couldn't see? Either way, the Dark Lord was bleeding more than was healthy. And like Po and Tigress he appeared to be unconscious as well.
"What happened?" Raiden asked, looking back at the group that was now shackle free.
"We… don't know." Tai Lung shook his head.
"Death Adder had some kind of shadow substance wrap around Po and Tigress, and it brought them closer to him. But once they got close enough all three of them fainted." Crane explained. "We honestly don't know what happened."
Raiden crossed his arms, thinking.
"Lena, what are you doing here?" Tai Lung asked.
The ocelot crossed her arms. "Happy to see you too."
"That's not what I meant…" Tai Lung sighed. "I thought I told you to wait-"
"It's my destiny to be here." Lena replied, walking over to Po and kneeling next to him. She put a hand on his forehead and concentrated, a few seconds passed and the slash on Po's shoulder slowly started to knit back together. "It is my job to aid the Dragon Warrior when I can."
She closed her eyes and saw the Valley of Peace… She could see Po and Tigress standing tall and proud, together to face Death Adder, and only then did she understand.
"I don't believe this…" Lena stood up, shaking her head.
"What? What is it?" Tai Lung asked.
"It's a battle of the minds now. Death Adder brought those two inside his mind." Lena said, then raised a hand to Shang. "And I know what you're thinking. Don't kill Death Adder while he's down like this. If you do, Po and Tigress will lose their consciousness and their bodies will become empty shells."
Shang nodded, his aura suddenly changing to one of fear.
"What's happening, are they winning?" Liu asked, and Lena guessed that was the Dragon Warrior's brother. Their individual aura had a same feel to it.
"I can show you." Lena placed a hand on Po's forehead and concentrated again, and instantly, they were in the Valley of Peace. But… it just didn't seem the same as the warriors remembered.
As Po and Tigress glared at Death Adder, they could only hate the twisted mockery that was the Valley of Peace as the Dark Lord created. They didn't really understand where they were, but they had a faint idea.
"What is the matter? You do not like my vision of the Valley?" Death Adder smirked, to which Tigress merely growled in reply.
"This place is as twisted as you." The feline snarled.
"Really, what do you think? It cannot be that bad. After all, this is my mind, so it's a representation of what I think of the Valley." Death Adder rested against his Golden Ax, emitting a nonchalant aura.
"It's like staring into a backed-up toilet!" Po shot back.
"You can still talk big, but not for long." The Dark Lord raised his hands, and the panda and tiger were surprised when energy started to fly to him. As if the energy were metal and Death Adder was the magnet. "I… I can feel the maddening power overflowing through my body… the power of the Feral! GLUTTONY, LUST, GREED, PRIDE, SLOTH, ENVY, AND WRATH! The powers granted by the seven sins, COME TO ME!"
Po and Tigress watched in shock as Death Adder's body began to change. His form changing to something that was completely inapplicable. He… didn't appear to be anything that would have been born into the world. His form was dark purple, his 'face' being guarded by crab-like hands that laced together and concealed his ugliness. The rest of his form was merely a glob-like substance, and shot up in the air, and disappearing without a trace.
"What the…?" Po began, then was cut off as an explosion rocked the ground. He and Tigress looked up to see smoke rising from the unholy Jade Palace of… wherever they were, they made a beeline toward the Palace. Death Adder's mind, they begrudgingly accepted. This… this was too much. They were nearing the top of the stairs when something really strange happened.
A beam of light shot down from the skies, stopping the Kung Fu masters in their tracks. When the orb of light that had appeared on the stairs faded, and when their eyes adjusted, Po and Tigress were face to face with a male tiger. He crossed his arms, shaking his head.
"I cannot believe this… after all the training you two received, this is what amounts for it?" he said, confusing and slightly angering the couple. "You two are not strong enough to take him down."
He snapped his fingers and the Valley disappeared, and they were now standing in what appeared to be a hut. Apprehensive, the couple looked around while the man just sat in front of a fireplace.
"…the hell?" Po snarled, glaring at the man who tended to the fire. "What are you talking about? We should be out there fighting Death Adder and we shouldn't be hiding like cowards!"
"You two are not strong enough to bring him down, as I said before." the man replied, and that only further infuriated Po. Tigress put a hand on his shoulder, and shook her head.
"As much as I agree with you Po, maybe he has a good reason." Tigress said. "Maybe we aren't strong enough to bring him down. Did you see the form he took?"
"Pfft, he was a giant blob of jelly!" Po scoffed.
"You're getting overconfident, again." Tigress sighed. "Sir, what reason did you bring us here."
"You two are basically screwed over. You can't bring him down, and I've already tried." the man shrugged. "It's his game here, the only way to win is not to play."
"So you just expect us to sit here and do nothing while Death Adder destroys the world we all know?" Po shot back.
"It's amazing how productive doing nothing can be. In essence, Death Adder is aging, and he cannot live forever." the man replied, not at all perturbed at Po's outburst. "And because he's bleeding out in the real world, he's bound to die here soon."
Po growled. "We cannot wait for hours for him to die! He could recover, go to the real world and destroy everything! Who the hell are you anyway? More importantly, why are you here?"
"Even though I already know who you two are, is it not proper manners to introduce oneself before asking another his name?" the man replied, breaking his stare from the fire as he turned to look at the Kung Fu warriors.
Po sighed. "My name is Po, I'm the Dragon Warrior."
"And I am Master Tigress, of the Jade Palace." His feline lover replied.
"And as for my name, perhaps you can guess?" the man grinned. "As for why I'm here, I am Death Adder's light side."
"You are… Death Adder's light side…" Po repeated in disbelief, and Tigress was equally wary of this new figure.
Tigress shook her head when Po looked to her for an answer.
"I was a warrior. A warrior whose dark side was embodied and captured my wife and brought her to his castle. I was torn, if I defeated my dark side, I would die. And if I didn't face Death Adder, as he calls himself, then my wife would die along with countless others. After meditating on the situation, I made the decision to face my dark side." the man replied. "And I lost, at the cost of my body and mind. I sent my wife away while I still had a little bit of control, I never knew where she went. For if I ordered her somewhere, Death Adder would have hunted her down and killed her. But even then, it was no use. I learned she died a few weeks later."
"A man whose… wait a minute!" Realization dawned on Po and Tigress gave him a look to spill the beans when he went silent.
"Y-You… me and Tigress danced to a ballad of your story." Po said, and the man raised an eyebrow.
"Really? They fabricated ballads after my life? Surprising…" he chuckled softly. "So, who am I, Dragon Warrior?"
"…Are you…. Sephiroth?" Po asked, and the tiger smirked.
"Correct. Used to be, I believe the proper term is." Sephiroth shook his head as he smiled still.
"But… you still are, right?" Tigress asked.
He shrugged. "Who knows? I'm not even sure myself."
"Listen to you, you've gone senile!" Po said, hardly believing what he was hearing. "Why don't you help us? With your help, we'll be able to beat Death Adder."
"If I couldn't stop him the first time, what makes you think I could do so now?" Sephiroth asked.
"Uh, how about you get up and walk with us to the Palace." Po replied in a smart ass tone. "Sephiroth, you're a great warrior, please help us."
Sephiroth shook his head. "Sorry, no can do."
"Why not?" Tigress asked before Po could assert himself again.
"Well, if I fight him again, and by some chance, win, then… it would be the end of us both." Sephiroth replied. "There was something I was wanting to see before I died, but… I don't think it's a possibility with Death Adder still in control."
"There you go, drive. You can use that drive to press on and defeat him." Po said.
The tiger gave Po a dry look. "Did you not hear me? It. Would. Be. The. End. Of. Us. Both. If one dies, so does the other."
"Po, don't you dare." Tigress grabbed his arm.
"I know what you were thinking."
"Oh, come on! I'm not that dark." Po shook his head, sighing. "I'm going to get some air."
He walked to the door, opening and closing it behind him. Tigress looked at Sephiroth for a full minute before speaking again.
"If you really wanted to see the fall of Death Adder, why did you not just…" She trailed off, what was she saying? That was completely wrong, but the Dark Lord's downfall, wouldn't it be worth a life?
"If Po were to sacrifice his life for the Dark Lord's demise, would it be worth it?" Sephiroth asked, reading her expression.
The feline looked at the ground. "I… I don't know if I would be able to handle that."
Sephiroth stood up, walking over to the fireplace once more and stared at the mantel. Above it, hanging in a golden picture-frame, was a painting of a woman. She was a tiger like Sephiroth and she seemed…
"Is… Is that…?" Tigress asked, and Sephiroth nodded.
"What is it you plan to do?" Sephiroth asked her, changing the subject. Tigress swallowed, but her mouth was dry. "Do you go with your lover, face uncertain death, and do your best to bring down the Dark Lord?"
Tigress clenched her hands into fists. "Yes, I'm going whether you try to stop me or not."
Sephiroth chuckled. "Well… I think you'd better leave now. Po has already gotten ten-fifteen minutes head start. We are not that far from the Valley in all honesty, so by now he should be at the Palace."
"I won't stop you. If you feel you are strong enough, my opinion means nothing." Sephiroth shrugged.
"Join us." Tigress asked, taking a step toward the front door.
"Maybe… haven't decided." Sephiroth shrugged.
"Then you are a true coward, unwilling to face what you have become." Tigress glared at him before running out the door.
Sephiroth sighed, looking at his beloved sword as he tried to collect his thoughts. He reached toward it, feeling the eyes of his late wife stare at him. And then turned around, coming face to face with the ghost of his wife.
Join them… she spoke softly to him. For the future of our child, please Sephiroth. Do what is right, no matter the cost. And… we can be together again…
Sephiroth closed his eyes tightly, feeling tears run down his face and opened his eyes again and was met with an empty room. Was he hallucinating?
"I…I will fight."
"AH HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!" Death Adder's laughed echoed loudly throughout the Palace and the Valley below.
"So you've come. The Great Dragon Warrior, Protector of the Valley of Peace, the great Po Ping… come to die…" If Po could have seen his face, he knew the Dark Lord would be smirking.
Po drew his sword, and that only caused Death Adder to erupt into more laughter. The Dark Lord had embedded himself into the Palace, whip-like tentacles sprouted from various portions of the broken Palace. The large crab-like hands still laced together as a mutated head sprouted from the side and moved around aimlessly as it set it's single eye on Po, it's pointed teethed mouth drew into a vile grin.
"Did you really just draw your blade against me, Panda?" the Dark Lord laughed maniacally. "That puny weapon is nothing compared to my power!"
"You underestimate my power." Po snarled, running forward. The mutated head set it's eye on Po and lunged forward to meet him, to which Po simply jumped up in the air dodging the head and ran across it's neck. He reached the crab-like hands and thrust his sword into the crack, attempting to wrench it open. He looked back and saw the head snarl and make a beeline toward him, to which he ducked at once, dodging the attack. And as the head collided with the solid crab-like hands, it was dazed in a stupor.
Seizing his chance, Po leapt atop the head, clenching his legs together as he straddled the beast and raised his blade, piercing the eye. The creature let out a ear-piercing screech as it writhed in agony, attempting to throw Po off of it, and Po gave it another taste of his sword. He thrust his blade in until the hilt touched it's bleeding eye socket and retrieved it as the beast began to fall, landing safely on his feet as he jumped. The crab hands opened up as the head went motionless, and Po saw Death Adder for what he truly was.
He really was the dark side of Sephiroth, as he was darker in fur color than he and his eyes remained the blood-red crimson. He snarled, baring his razor sharp fangs as he raised his arms. At first, Po stood there. The next, he regretted it. One of the tentacles wrapped around Po, hauling him up in the air as if he weighed nothing and brought him close to the mutated head. The force at which it was constricting around the Panda made him drop his blade. What Po had not realized at first, was the head had regenerated and was now opening it's mouth wide in expectation of the meal. Po pounded on the tentacle with his free fist, and then biting it as he tried to escape. Was this how he was going to die? He wished he could escape…
And that wish was granted in the form of Tigress as she leapt out of nowhere and sliced the tentacle cleanly in two. Po dropped heavily to the ground, freeing himself and picked up his blade at once. He stepped up to Tigress, who was currently holding the 'Sword of Heroes'. After laying in the Hall of Heroes for so many years, it had finally chosen a new master. Po nodded to her and she nodded back, they would do this, together.
Shang paced back and forth, intent on creating a hole in the floor. Shifu was meditating, and the Five, Liu, Tai Lung and Hàn were all as anxious as Shang was.
"Dear…" Hàn began to say when Shang stopped, looking at her. "Please… calm yourself."
"I can't!" Shang yelled to the ceiling and it echoed loudly. "I can't just sit here and do nothing while my friends risk their lives like this. Lena, isn't there some way we can help?"
Lena shook her head and Shang let out another furious yell and pounded the ground with his fist, cursing his uselessness.
Hàn stood up and walked over to her Wolf lover and sat next to him, wrapping her arms around him. He was breathing heavily, very ticked off as he tried to control himself. Even though he was free of the Feral virus, he still wanted to tame his anger. It was nothing but trouble. But the anger was replaced with sadness, was this his destiny? To just sit idly by while his friends risked their lives? To be unable to help at all while they fought?
"Do not worry. You will be of great help to us after Death Adder." Lena spoke up, and that made Shang feel a little better. "In fact, it is because of you that we will be able to face what lies ahead of us after this ordeal."
Everyone stared at Death Adder's body. Then all mouths dropped open as the blood began to seep back into his body, and the wound on his hand healed. However… he did not stir.
Po and Tigress backed up, panting heavily as they assessed Death Adder's state, contemplating their next move.
"It's no use. Regardless of how strong you are, you cannot defeat me. The Great Death Adder!" the mutation laughed maniacally. Po assessed the situation, no matter what they did, it was always the mutated head that stopped them from attacking the Dark Lord directly. They'd have to take out that head, then move in and kill Death Adder once and for all.
"Tigress, we need to-" Po began, then cut himself off as a tentacle wrapped around his sword free arm and hauled him away from her. It lifted him up as Tigress tried to slice at the tentacle, but it was harder than diamond and the Sword of Heroes did nothing to cut the limb. Po glared at the head as it smirked evilly at him, and lifted him higher, opening it's jaws wide with the intent to eat him. The Panda gripped his blade tighter, looking at his bound arm and took a deep breath. He raised his blade…
…and let out a yell as he sliced his bound arm clean off, dropping to the waiting jaws below.
"PO!" Tigress screamed as the jaws snapped shut and the head smiled.
For a minute, all was still. Then the head frowned, groaning. At first, Tigress was unsure why. But then she got her answer. The eye of the head ruptured, crimson steel flashed in the sunlight as it sliced a crevice into the organ as the mutation hit the ground. It groaned and struggled to get up once again, but it had no energy nor life to move once more. Po burst from the eye socket and raised his sword to the heavens as he let loose a yell, the brain of the monster resting on the tip of his sword as he flicked it loose. He was covered in blood, blue blood to be exact. Red blood seeped from the clean cut where his right arm used to be, and Tigress covered her mouth with a hand to keep from throwing up.
Po stepped out from the bloody carnage and glared at Death Adder, who's crab-like prison opened up to reveal a not-so happy Dark Lord. Po tightened the grip on his sword as Tigress stepped up to him.
"I can take him…" he told her. "You just sit back and watch the show."
But he dropped his blade at once, clutching at the spot where his right arm used to be. Tigress knelt next to him, trying to discern if he were poisoned while Death Adder simply laughed.
"It is like I said before. It is no use. You may have destroyed my minion, but you are no match for me." he lifted his arms to the skies, smirking.
"DIE!"Death Adder yelled as all of the tentacles rippled in excitement and made a beeline toward Tigress and Po, to which Tigress simply hugged Po.
She tightened her eyes closed, waiting for the pain of being ripped apart, but after a minute, nothing. She opened one eye and saw it in slow motion. It was like an invisible sword had sliced the tentacles, and the appendages dropped to the ground, squirming one final time before going motionless.
"What's this!" Death Adder exclaimed, surprise written all over his face.
He looked up to the direction, apparently wherever the invisible force came from and Tigress and Po realized it was Sephiroth. He got up slowly from his crouch, flourishing his blade.
"DAMN YOU!" Death Adder swore to the Gods, both known and unknown.
"I've come to retrieve my power." Sephiroth declared, flourishing his blade again as he pointed it at Death Adder. "You can't handle it."
He leapt down in front of Tigress and Po, putting his blade in front of them in sign of them to stay back.
"Heh… look at you." Po chuckled weakly. "Making a big dramatic entrance and stealing my spotlight."
Sephiroth looked back at them and his face turned to one of amusement. "Well… you don't possibly believe that he deserves to be the main event, now do you?"
Po struggled to stand, but fell back down. "Now that you mention it… you're right."
"Don't move Dragon Warrior. This is my fight. As it has always been." Sephiroth told Po, who simply nodded.
"You will die if you try to destroy me, Sephiroth." Death Adder taunted in an attempt to get the Tiger to back away.
"I have come to the conclusion that that no longer matters. They are right. You shall die." Sephiroth declared. "But first."
He snapped his fingers and the Jade Palace disappeared, and Death Adder looked normal. As in, he was completely like Sephiroth, but his eyes were way different. As was his attire. Where Sephiroth dressed in white slacks and a yin-yang kung fu vest, Death Adder was dressed in solid black in contrast to Sephiroth. They were the embodiments of Yin and Yang. The scenery changed to a beautiful forest, Sephiroth and Death Adder stood in ankle deep water and Po and Tigress could only guess if this place had any significance to Sephiroth. There was a roaring waterfall, and from the cliff the water spouted from, there were various caves spotted into the edifice. Po looked at his wound, then blinked in surprise. His arm was back and it seemed as if he never had the wound at all. So he was thankful if Sephiroth did anything to help him.
"This is where it began." Sephiroth said, so Po and Tigress guessed this is where the corruption occurred. "And this is where it shall end."
"One shall stand. One shall fall, the survivor… shall live on in the Dark Realm." Death Adder grinned. "Fitting way for you to die, destroyed by yourself."
"Prepare yourself!" Both yelled at the same time.
A/N: I am SO sorry for the long long long wait. School's been busy and this chapter was EXTREMELY hard to write. There's maybe… one or two chapters left before this story is done. Perhaps three, we will have to see. But anyways, I hope that this did not disappoint you. And if it did… then I apologize it was not what you were wanting.
All in all, I actually enjoyed the fight I have created so far. And you may recognize some dialogue Sephiroth said to Death Adder from Devil May Cry 3. So yeah, that is property of CAPCOM. And the whole thing about Po cutting off his arm was inspired by the movie Beowulf, the movie with Angelina Jolie mind you. XD Ironic, I know. But anyways, that movie is awesome. I'd check it out if I were you. Lol
Till next chapter.