We Reach the Ending! While I did my best to keep it the more anime-related possible, I actually brought forward a good enough way to have a Japanese boy make his way through the Japan's Self Defense Force and escape with a Jet. Because really, Deus ex machine are things of the Ancient Greeks…not of the present times.
Technology brings forth solutions to everyday problems, but also more problems which need more solutions. This, after all, is the basis of evolution: Solving a problem with a solution which brings forth more problems, and then forgetting about the new problems until they become unbearable. Like the coal industries, the coal power plants, the oil power plants, the synthetic materials which do not decompose themselves in the ground, but are easy to produce, the nuclear power plants which leave highly radioactive refuses to be cleaned, somewhere. For the majority of those problems, the Empire of the Dystopia solved it all by tearing it all down, and throwing all nuclear waste, and materials, into the sun: which was effective, and laid the way to new types of energy. The sun didn't even realize it got bombarded with hundreds of thousands of tons of waste: it was too big to take notice. However, once the laying foundation for new types of solar, hydro, and clean energies were found, ways to make them even more powerful came to be. Infinite energy is an idiocy which no physic professor would ever claim possible, and would never had, until someone asked the fundamental question: What if we circle a black hole with a circular rotating mass of same length, and have it spin and produce electricity? What if we actually encircle an entire sun with solar panels, out in space? What if we transmit electricity, like we transmit data, through specific wave sets, and then convert it back? It was funny, but all those who thought about the petroleum never being replaced, never realized the sheer energy produced by a sun, or maybe they chose to ignore it for gains. The Dystopia had no money interests at mind: it only had evolution and survival.
That's why when the Earth ecosystem actually got stabilized, they moved to Mars, then began refining Jupiter's atmosphere, then it was Neptune's turn and finally Pluto, which was sadly an asteroid, but also the first point into the Traslation technology.
If you can't move in space faster than light, because there is a limit, why not move *above* space? Or *under* space, for what it matters? Traslation basically was removing oneself of mass, taking a non-relativistic point in space, and waiting as the universe turned around until the arrival. Einstein would have been proud to know that even space had become relative. Someone even tried it with time, but was actually discouraged from doing so: Never meddle with time lines. Never.
Synchronization, on the other hand, was an easier process: a point A worked as an arrival, and a point B as a departure. Both points were actually moved above space to become *the same space* so, when one moved, it actually stayed in the same place, until it took another step forward, and voilà: Teleportation.
That's why Cog was actually afraid of his grandfather's words, which would come down as rocks in the middle of the night.
Cog was sitting down on a sofa, in front of the one which his grandfather, the Primus, had actually taken to sit on, with both professor Colbert, who had his sort of dreamy sight about *technology* on, and Tiffania, on the other hand, who was both nervous but also happy to see Cog still alive.
"So, you were supposed to be on Truan-8" the Primus said, looking at Cog as he sipped a tea cup.
"Yes, sir" Cog replied nervously.
"The last report had you fighting two Scortifex', with a compound fracture in the arm"
"So, how come it's been two years, two years of fleets moving by and away, of people coming and going, and you are here without your suit on? I've already got other people's point of view, but I'd like yours too" the Primus asked once more.
"Well…" and Cog began explaining, for he had to explain by voice, as he couldn't overexert his brain too much by sharing information through touch; not that he would even if he could, but that was not the point. He explained how he faked being a mute demon, how he faked being easy of mind, as in truth he hid the worst of his intelligence from other's view. He explained how he had already planned to overtake the monarchy with an industrial revolution of sorts, while having the judgment go on, which got him gasps from both Professor Colbert and Tiffania, when he'd come to realize it was actually his sister in the monarchy, and thus a judgment was unnecessary, and an industrial revolution was to be more controlled.
He spoke of Albion, of his travels through Tristain and Gallia, he spoke of his treasure hunting, of Tarbes, and of various other places he went to, and what he did there. He spoke until the sun slowly rose, letting the rays hit the side of the windows, and until the fire died down in the chimney. He spoke until his throat was dry, and he spoke with emotions, happiness, anger, sadness. He spoke until finally, when Siesta came by with breakfast, he had finished speaking, doing his best not to mention his probable death sentence in a couple of weeks, or months.
"You…you…" the Primus was at a loss of words; such…idiocy hadn't been expected.
"You're a Commander of Genocide! Not a psychic! You shouldn't enter fights with Psychics! Fighting without overwhelming strength? Are you gone nuts like a drunken Massagon? You…I ain't giving you my post, you know? Heck, I'd be the first to ask your promotion to Primus, and take my place, but I damn can't: it would shame me if I didn't at least do something better before retiring!" the Primus stood up raised his fist into the sky.
"Why do the good things happen only to the soldiers, and never to the elderly, huh? You've got a problem with elderlies solving problem!" as he did that, Cog slowly began massaging his temples, the headache increasing.
"So…what's going to happen now?" Tiffania asked, hesitantly, looking at both the Primus and Cog.
"Well, for now, I'll have message drones sent to my grand-daughter, and then she'll send back the list of who to let live and who should instead be killed."
"What happens if the Queen chooses not to kill anyone?" Professor Colbert asked, worriedly.
"Well, it depends: would anyone *pass* on the offer to kill the most hated enemies free of charges? To cleanse the corruption in a government, going unpunished? Furthermore there can be no entering the empire with a fractioned government. It has to be one and one only. In this case, the Governor of this planet is Henrietta, so she's going to make some tough choices. A token force would then be left to ensure safety and organization to go as planned, they'd be granted lethal force authorization, and would act only under the orders of the Original himself, at least, until there is acceptance of the fact that there can only be one government, with one ruler"
"So basically, it would be like becoming a protectorate of someone else" Colbert replied eyeing the so called *Primus*
"You *are* a Protectorate of the Empire of the Dystopia, wherever you like it now, or you will grow to like it later, it is up to you. As a Primus of Genocide, I can however alter the judgment at my own leisure, Professor Colbert…I could choose to have this world ignored by the empire for another hundred years, or even a thousand, or have it completely purged of sentient life and have it exploited. So, I've got to ask you, professor: Should thousands die, for millions to live in peace, or should no one die, for billions to be ruined by hate, anger and sadness?" as he said that, the Primus moved closer to Professor Colbert.
"You shouldn't think of us as another kingdom, professor. We are thousands, and thousands of years old. Millions have passed since the time we were but a country. We are an Intergalactical Empire. We span across galaxies, we are numbered not in millions, billions, or millions of billions, but even more than that! There is no hope, none at all, for those who defy our will. Yet we grant choice to those we come upon, but we are not one's to be toyed with." Taking in a small breath, the Primus whispered once more:
"Though maybe we could issue a leave of a hundred or two hundred years, and have you accepting the fact that, later on, you'd be entering an empire of such proportions…" as he began thinking about it, a rustle from the stairs came down, and Mary entered the room to move next to Rayne.
"Anything new?" she asked her, without making a try in hiding it, but as Rayne shook her head, as she was munching on a piece of bread and butter, she sighed, grabbing for herself some jam and some croissants.
Professor Colbert was at a loss of words…it didn't matter how much he turned it around, there simply was no way to say *no*. They had too many years of advantage to even think it would be possible. There was no way they could defeat them, fight them or oppose them. The only thing they could do was either wait until being absorbed, or be absorbed without waiting.
"Are there…any examples of what happens once you enter the empire? Other worlds … probably entered it, right?" Colbert asked, to which the Primus nodded.
"I'd have asked for Cerbera to demonstrate, but since she's not here, I'll have to go with one who actually is…" he opened the window, making a loud whistle.
Cog looked at him surprised:
"You brought a Massagon, here!" before peacefully falling asleep, with Rayne quickly moving next to him, and making him sit down straight, holding him from falling down.
"Yes I did…how come he fell asleep?" as the Primus said, turning around, from the window came in a monstrous face, which, however, seemed to have semblance of humanity. It was the same towering thing which had been seen at the academy, yet it seemed it had followed them till there.
Rayne chirped happily "Father is probably tired" refusing to add anything else.
"Could you assume a less frightening form and explain?" the Primus asked, as Siesta, and the servitude that actually was seeing the beast, outright fainted or began running away screaming.
The Massagon nodded, placing a hand on the window, slowly shrinking in size until it looked like a bundle of mechanical cables, and a really skinny man in the middle of it. He looked human, if not for the nearly empty eye sockets, which made him look like a sort of ghost from *the grudge* only without the dose of hair.
Tiffania shrieked going behind the sofa. This wasn't actually helping.
"You…you look … human" Colbert muttered, seeing how, except the incredible amount of metal on the skinny frame, it didn't seem to him to be so…alien.
"He's a fourth generation Massagon. With time even the most alien of races becomes akin to our form. This way, it helps in cutting down costs for atmosphere and habitat control" the Primus said, tapping slightly on his left hand, before showing a picture, which stopped in midair of a sort of primal and giant like ape, wielding a set of sharp teethes and erupting some sort of light from his fists and mouth.
"This was the first generation Massagon. The picture doesn't show it, but they are actually intelligent, gentle and smart. Right 1023413?" he asked the thing, which nodded, before speaking in a sort of raunchy voice.
"Yes…though I suppose I should offer my apologies to the girl who ran behind the sofa…I'm sorry little miss, didn't mean to make you afraid…" as he said that, Tiffania, albeit shivering, raised her head from behind the sofa, and, while gulping hard, muttered:
"No…need…really…I'm the one…who should be…sorry"
"Anyway" the Primus said, once the Massagon, excusing himself once more for his appearance, left to resume his normal heightened form outside of the mansion, "I must ask…where is the rogue suit?" as he queried them, each showed a surprised face…
"Well? Care to wake up my grandson?" he asked once more, as Cog had been peacefully sleeping.
"No clue…" Mary said starting to think when was the last time she had seen her.
"It's been a while, indeed" Rayne muttered, none of the girls actually wanted to wake Cog up, so they didn't even register their great-grandfather's request.
"Then…where is this Louise girl?" he asked once more.
"Louise? She's probably on her way back from the Fire Dragon Mountains" said a stern voice coming from the stairs, as Eleonore, having dressed herself after a night's rest, had descended.
"I suppose we have yet to be presented" Eleonore said, bringing forward her hand in the usual kiss hand movement.
The Primus smiled, and taking the hand it brought it up towards his lips, but didn't actually kiss it.
"It's a pleasure, I suppose. I am that idiot's great-grandfather, Primus of Genocide, you may call me Primus, madam" the man said, before muttering to himself:
"Fire Dragon Mountains…yes, I've got them…is your sister a pink-haired girl?" he asked once more, tapping again on his left arm, and bringing forward what looked like a picture, however strangely it seemed to be moving. It was actually a video feed, showing the group making its way down from the mountain, and near the end were Louise and Saito, Saito holding on his back Tabitha, who wouldn't have managed otherwise to descend.
"Louise! Hey! Look over here!" Eleonore exclaimed, kind of irritated at the sight of her youngest sister walking down, "You! Over there, you blond haired des Ondines!" referring to Guiche "You could carry her on your back, couldn't you?"
"They can't hear you" Rayne chirped once more, "It's only showing a recording"
"Message inbound" muttered a voice from the picture, and soon the video was replaced with a set of moving squares around a spheres, "Grehyr satellites found. Overwrite in progress." As a bar slowly filled with numbers from 1 to 100, it soon became completely black. "Overwrite completed. Initiating live feed of test-world"
The Primus didn't bother closing the output connection, it would be easier to have people grow accustomed to technology by actually have them see it, and not hide it.
Suddenly, a set of different squares appeared in the air, each showing different areas of the world, all at the same time.
"That's Germania's famous hotspot for couples!" Eleonore muttered looking at a specific square of the various spots. "That over there instead is lake Ragdorian" pointing at another one "That's the Fire Dragon Mountains, that's the Tristain royal palace" and many, many more showed. The Primus kind of smiled at the sight of such naivety, while Professor Colbert was utterly fascinated, and even Tiffania looked in awe as she could even see Saxe-Gotha from there! All however, came crashing down as the strange metallical voice began screaming:
"Attention, self-defense mechanism initiated. Attention, Biological Weaponry detected. Attention, Black Alert. Black Alert" closing them down.
"Black…alert?" Eleonore queried, if a bit scared.
"It means that the Grehyr vacuum cleaner has woken up" muttered Cog, as he slowly opened his eyes again "A test world needs something to cleanse it after a test…after all."
"Stealth field is down!" Yelled the fleet's commander.
"Synchronization has gone out of range!" Replied the synchronization officer.
"What? Why?" the fleet commander replied surprised, before recollecting himself.
"Long range scanners give us a moving Bio-Weapon towards our forward base!" the communication officers replied.
"Can we hit it with the plasma rounds?" he kind of asked hopefully.
"No sir, atmosphere damage would be too severe for the local population" the weapons officer replied.
"Prepare second to ninth platoon for drop-in. Get me the Primus of Genocide on feed" the fleet commander ordered.
As the black alert message subsided, Eleonore had already moved near Cog, to sit down next to him with a puzzled expression. At that moment, the face of someone the Primus knew, the fleet commander, showed up with a nervous expression.
"Primus. We've got the Bio-Weapon moving towards our forward base. Approximate time of arrival is sixteen hours tops. It's moving from deep down the *Romalia* country, laying waste to all it finds on its way. We're dropping down the second to ninth platoon, to provide assistance. It would be best if you were back at base by that time. For worst to worst, we're going to hit it with everything we have."
"Understood fleet command, I'll grab the useless idiot of mine and have him sent back up for a check. Prepare the infirmary for him, would you?"
"Synchronization is not working, Primus, something's scrambling our signal"
"Then we'll wait at forward camp" as the Primus nodded that order, the communication got cut off, and, turning to face everyone in the room, considering Rayne and Mary had already stood to their feet and were itching to move, he muttered:
"Evacuating the premises in less than an hour: We must go to the Magic Academy of Tristain…now!"
"The students are in danger? Is this what you're saying?" Professor Colbert was already standing up, when he heard that, and he was actually furious at the Primus.
"Yes, as are my troops! Move your asses, we leave now!"
"Damn…can I get a coffee first?" Cog muttered, as he once more leaned on the verge of falling asleep.
"I'll grab the jug for you" Eleonore whispered back –and for me- she thought.
Saito couldn't have believed his eyes, when he saw something black darting at more than two hundreds kilometers per hour in front of them, who were heading back to the mansion, with Tabitha safely on his back, because she was without shoes and was still royalty. Saito knew it looked like it was some sort of a big troop transport, but to the others, it looked like another monster, so they had drawn their wands ready to fight once more, before being compelled by Cerbera, who was waving at the driver, to put them down because it was a friend. As they climbed on the back, after being repeatedly convinced that it wasn't a monster, the driver, a soldier wearing a helmet commented from the driver's seat, which had a window opening onto the back:
"So, who's Hiraga Saito of you?" as the transport began moving once more, Louise shivered holding herself straight to Saito, for she wasn't used to such speed. On the other hand, Tabitha too was holding onto him.
"it's me, sir" Saito replied, looking around him as the transport which was a closed one, seemed to hold some sort of armory inside, with guns, and metal crates orderly piled in a corner.
"No *Sir* Crap with me, boy. Hold on, tight turn!" as he said that, Guiche actually yelled as the transport turned to the right, throwing him straight against the other side, while Reynal managed to keep a hold of a handle. Cerbera wasn't even flinching when Guiche fell against her, even when his head ended up on her flat-boarded chest piece, simply grabbing him by the neck, and having him sit next to her.
Louise on the other hand, felt herself being grabbed by Saito, in order to avoid her falling. She instinctively grabbed him too, and found herself being within his left arm, which was holding her strongly, as she blushed, Saito kept looking at the driver, who didn't seem to mind driving with a helmet.
"So, you all riled up, going back to good old earth?" the driver asked once more, as the truck took another turn, sending Saito wondering how the hell he knew about that, and if there even were curves that tight around there.
"How do you…"he'd have asked, but was interrupted by Louise, who screamed:
"Yes he is! Now can't you drive a bit more slowly?"
Saito looked at her with surprise, and Louise reddened in silence.
"No can do, every moment is precious, and they're going to need this transport pretty soon for evacuating the Academy"
"The academy?" Reynal asked, "Why are we heading to the Tristain's magic academy?"
"A biological weapon has awoken, and is heading towards our forward base" the driver replied, "which happened to be the academy" as he said that, nervousness ran over everyone. Saito, however, was the only one who was utterly afraid.
"Wait…Biological weapon, like the Nerghulians?" many looked at him with a surprised face, but Saito wanted to be sure.
"Nah, probably some sort of half organic half cyborg thing, pumped up with Psychic capacities and hell bent on destruction. The vacuum cleaner of this world, so to say" the way he said made it sound like an easy thing, so Saito thought about not worrying too much: it was no longer his problem.
"Can we provide assistance?" Tabitha asked then, to which the driver said:
"Help in evacuating would be nice, let the First fleet take care of it"
"First…fleet?" Reynal asked, curious.
"Long story. Someone else will explain it better. By the way, the thing is scrambling the Synchronization signal, so, unless you actually get the moons to align, we're on our own until the other platoons crash-land" the driver replied, before finally coming to a halt, which sent everyone on the back, except Cerbera, and Guiche who was by her side, straight against the metallic wall which separated the driver seat from the rest of the truck. Guiche fell once more against Cerbera's chest, who sighed shaking his head.
"I can't come to understand how father actually has praise for you" she muttered as she quickly descended, grabbing Guiche by the back of the neck with a hand.
Saito stopped for a second, before asking: "What do you mean, unless the moons align?"
"When we were up there we realized there is another Synchronization tunnel, strong one too, but it connects the moons of here to someplace else we have yet to look for"
The academy's white walls sported machine-guns nest, all aiming in one direction. Above it, the Crusade's fleet was floating bearing on their masts the Symbol of the Crusade, down below a set of trenches, anti-air, and a small amount of cannons had been placed, as some grey dressed persons were directing strange clouds of nanites to form themselves on said forms. The Engineers of the Dystopia were both civilians and military, they were apt in building, repairing, and destroying. They had no need to bring in steel or concrete, because they could direct the nanites to actually refine and then use it, to produce and build. As they worked their ways into reinforcing the structure of the compound, Tabitha, once dressed again in a more orderly fashion, began helping, together with the Ondine Guards who refused to leave the academy, in putting up a shield covering the school.
"The Psych shield is impressive, I must say" the Primus said, looking as it slowly expanded covering up everything within the school premises. "With five focal points it should hold stable enough…though I wish we thought about bring down a couple of our own magnetic shields" he muttered, looking at Cog who was calmly drinking half a jug of coffee with ease.
"Nephew, I still haven't asked you: do you know where the rogue-Ai went?" as he asked that, Cog shook his head.
"Not a clue"
Meanwhile, on the other side of the Academy, Louise was speaking worriedly with the Pope and Henrietta, explaining what had happened to Tabitha and what Julio had done.
"Poor boy…it saddens me…he was…" the pope actually had tears in his eyes, hearing what had happened to Julio, "now is not the time…however." He steeled himself, as he took into his hands the founder's prayer book, which had been given to him by one of the paladins guarding him. "I found out there is a new spell, once the fire ruby was recovered…It's called world door…it is however extremely willpower taxing." Saying that, he gave back the founder's prayers book to Louise, who, opening it into the pages, saw what was written with a perplexed look.
"Have you already tried it, your holiness?" Henrietta asked the pope, who shook his head.
"No, I wished to, but when the Ancient Dragon woke up, I had no choice but to use all the magic I could into spells to more quickly evacuate Romalia."
"Ancient Dragon?" Louise asked, curiously.
"Yes, it is said that founder Brimir defeated him alone, with the power of all his familiars, right now, I hope the strength of Cog's empire will suffice"
"I am sure that no ancient dragon of sort could hold against my brother's Empire: not even a thousand of ancient dragons could…" as Henrietta was about to speak more, an alarmed paladin rushed in yelling:
"An elven fleet is coming this way!" at those words, the pope's face showed signs of shock and wonder, as it quickly moved outside, to hear more from another paladin, who, spyglass in hand, was looking at the horizon.
"Your holiness, they're waving a white truce flag" the captain of the paladins quickly said.
"A truce flag?" the pope asked surprised.
"Yes, furthermore it seems to be only a token force of the elven fleet, no more than five ships" as the captain said that, however, it came clear that it was a problem: either they spoke with them, or they fought them, if there were five ships, filled with elves, would the crusader's strength of unity actually work, or would it not? And even if it did, what if it happened with a gruesome victory, for the victory over only five ships?
"Let's hear them out" the pope whispered, right now they had an ancient dragon to defeat, with the help from Cog's empire furthermore…how could the elves actually be a threat?
Bidashal slowly descended from the ship, behind him, both Eri and Luctiana stayed silent, the first one with nervousness, and the second one with excitement. She finally had managed to see a human settlement! Meeting with them was the Pope, followed by what was known as Primus, and Cog, who actually had a feeling this time would come around sooner than expected. As some elven guards readied their hands on their swords behind the elven ambassador, so did the paladins. The Dystopian soldiers, instead, made a much clear, and united…yawn.
"Meh." Was the general murmur among them, which made both the paladin, and the elven side, look surprised, what was it all about with these demons not giving a damn?
Cog looked with a slight glint of anger at Bidashal, who started slowly talking to him:
"It seems we meet again"
"What brings you here, elf?" the pope asked, intercepting the ambassador's gaze.
"We wish to discuss peace" the elf replied.
"Peace?" the murmur grew among the humans, ha! They knew they were outnumbered, and as such decided they would rather bow their head in shame and give back the holy lands. Some of the Dystopian soldiers, however, hearing this sort of talk started growling.
The Primus kept quiet, as did Cog who, however, turned with a saddened expression to Eleonore, who looked surprised. Why the sad face?
"Yes, we do not wish more bloodshed, and we have realized that the Shaitan's true face was another one. We seek to amend our ways by making peace" the pope nodded, smiling:
"So, you are ready to abandon the holy lands, and give them back to their rightful heirs?"
"No" that came as a cold shower for the paladins, and the pope, they wanted peace, but not at those terms? The Dystopian soldiers meanwhile, had gotten their growling increase slowly. The elf ambassador looked at them for a second, surprised or maybe perplexed, but kept on:
"We wish peace, but we will not abandon our homes, which have been ours for thousands of years"
"Those lands were ours! Founder Brimir himself came from there! There can be no peace without that in the equation!" the pope yelled back, flustered.
"We can help against this Ancient Dragon, and we could certainly come up with other solutions…" the ambassador, Bidashal, tried suggesting.
The pope firmly shook his head.
"No! I WILL NOT…gurgle" the next moment, Eleonore realized why Cog's face had a saddened grief. The Primus of Genocide, raised his right hand, and then slammed it down with enormous strength against the pope's head: in a second the pope became a sort of mushy meat thing on the ground, which brought forth a set of screams and cries. The next instant, when the paladins raised their wands, they were utterly torn apart by fast, wicked claws, who knew no mercy, and who clawed through steel like it were butter.
That's when Cog spoke slowly, in the general shock of the audience:
"Paragraph Nine-seven-two: Religion must never come in the way of peace offers, especially when by offering it bloodshed can be avoided in a period of crisis. All opposition will be removed. Ondine Guards, LOWER YOUR WANDS NOW!" Cog yelled, looking at the shocked faces of Guiche, and Reynal, and of the rest of the corps who had raised their wands, but had been left untouched by the general mayhem.
"Lower them, NOW!" Cog yelled once more, and silently, some of the corps obeyed, except Guiche, who had tears in his eyes.
"You will not avenge him by dying today, Guiche" Cog replied bitterly, "lower it. Now" and silently, Guiche did so too. Eleonore stared, tears in her eyes, as she saw Henrietta faint outright next to her, and Tabitha held her staff strongly, without moving.
"I am now the one discussing the peace terms." The Primus said, staring at the elven ambassador, who while shocked, had him too ordered the other elves not to make a move.
"Yes…I understand…" Bidashal replied, slowly.
"You will not begin guerrilla nor terrorist operations on the human settlements, nor attack them. At the same time the Dystopia will make sure the human settlements will not barge into your territory. We wish for open border commerce and cultural exchange. We refuse to hear even the slightest bit of religious fanatic talk, racial segregation, or the likes. This is for BOTH sides" the Primus yelled, at the general ensemble.
"Now, as the governor appointed for this world has already been decided, you may either accept it, and the ensemble of laws which come with it, or refuse it and bring forth another subject, which will be adequately valuated. This does not, in any way, mean that the Governor will be able to overturn laws already placed. To speak it in plain simple terms: You'll have a human governor, but everyday life will always be the same, and if an abuse of power is displayed, higher ups will resolve the matter. Got it?"
The elf looked surprisingly at the Primus. He was talking fast, he was talking quick and he was simply stating facts like a book. He wasn't outright throwing them out of the equation, and he didn't even have the slightest bit of hesitation. He knew he could get everything with strength, but wasn't inclined into.
"Will the Governor be fair at least?" he asked once more
"After being trained for a couple of months you'll be surprised" the Primus replied.
"We accept…are there not going to be problems…for killing the pope?" Bidashal asked once more, but the Primus shrugged.
"Religious extremists always make me angry deep inside, those who have problem have better pass over it…though who said anything about killing him?" with a whistle, a demon walked forward, and soon, it became the splitting image of the pope himself.
"There, it can work for the fleet up above. When they'll later know the truth it's going to be too late for them to do anything" the Primus said once more, as the *pope* nodded silently, before smiling:
"I am the Pope Vittorio Severare, I look forward to working towards a bright new future!" as he said that, half-chirping it, many of the students, or the staff members, suddenly had the urge to puke. They didn't know it, but that wasn't even the vilest thing the Dystopia had ever done.
The Ancient Dragon moved forward, its paws cracking open the ground, as it moved, it repeated its programming: to protect the Owner from harm, he was the Gandalfr. The harm was the dystopian empire, which would kill all they did not like. The owner might not have been liked. To safe the owner, it awoke the biological weapon, it repaired it, and now *She* was the biological weapon. The pheromones she released into the atmosphere managed to convince the dragons that she was one of them, their father and mother. So they began naturally flying next to her, as she made her way towards the source of her problems, which was too near the owner.
She had to solve the problem now.
As she moved, she was surprised to find out that this weapon had psych absorbers, specifically in place to absorb a type of psych waves. *Void* it was called. It already was a bit full, but with more, it seemed like it could evolve again. A self-evolving weapon. Even the Dystopia didn't have one.
"Sir, we've picked up the rogue-Ai signal!" an Engineer said, looking at a screen in front of him, inside the academy's central tower.
"Where is she?" the Platoon sergeant asked.
"Straight ahead…she's inside the bio-weapon" the Engineer replied, looking shocked.
"When I said to give me some fun, I didn't mean it like this!" the Sergeant, who was actually also the Primus, looked up in the sky.
Cog, in the meantime, was calming down an extremely agitated Henrietta.
"The pope! They, we, you…the pope is dead!" she exclaimed once more, walking on a line.
"They killed him! Your empire killed the pope and his guards!" she added "and they even put a double in its place up with the fleet!"
"Yes. Now sister…what is it with that battle armor?" Cog inquired, looking at the strange, and utterly provocative armor Henrietta was wearing at the time, which seemed to be all, but armor.
"The armor is not the point!" Henrietta pouted back.
"I must admit that it was, however, a solution to the problem" Eleonore muttered, being next to Cog, her arms wrapped around herself, and looking sideways.
"What?" Henrietta stared at the woman who had married her brother, was she going nuts too?
"Well…now there is no longer a crusade, there is going to be peace once this problem is solved, and…well, we all already knew that Founder Brimir wasn't actually real, right?" as she said that, Henrietta gasped.
"Yes…you are right…however I don't think it would have been so bad *Not* to kill the pope!" as she said that, she looked angrily to the side of where the Primus was, who, keen eared and all, replied:
"I don't like those types of people, Grand-daughter!"
"This doesn't change the fact you could have, instead, knocked him out!" Henrietta pouted back.
"You still haven't spoken with your uncle. Trust me: his views are even worst" the Primus of Genocide replied back, to which Cog shivered.
"Better not" he said.
"Why not?" Henrietta asked, surprised.
"He's a Black Guardian. He's tasked with the protection of the world in which the Original himself is. Take grandfather's actions, but add to it the destruction of the system in which this world is" as he said that, he began shivering again.
"Never call a Black Guardian, never." The Primus replied nodding.
"Well, I don't get it!" as Henrietta said that, however, a strong tremor made her nearly lose her balance.
"Attacks incoming! Magnetic bullets from the dragons' sides!"
Saito had been given an armor, one that the soldiers, like Rayne, used to wear. It was extremely light, and instead of a normal view, he had also a set of different windows all around giving him suggestions, hints, showing him the battlefield, the angulation at which he held his rifle, and a sort of radar which differentiated friendlies from enemies from unknown. To that, it also added a sort of game-like feeling, counting on the lower corner of his sight the number of ammo, and shields, the armor had.
Louise was standing next to him, pouting as he got another soldier to explain to him how to use the rifle he'd been given.
"Hey! Are you listening to me?" Louise yelled at the boy, who stopped just in time from pressing the trigger.
"Ops, sorry. You were saying?" Saito replied waking up from his dreams of being a sort of Call of Duty war hero.
"I said, there is a new spell *World Door* in the founder's prayer book. I tried it earlier, and it showed me strange and tall grey buildings with strange things moving fast on grey roads…could it be your world?" as she asked that, Saito's heart took a leap.
"It could be! Can you show it to me? Please?" Forgetting it was willpower taxing, Louise did it, hoping for Saito to recognize her worth, maybe. Just when did she become seeking out his attention?
As the portal opened up, revealing a good old picture of Tokyo, and what looked like the roof of a building, a tremor shook the ground, making Saito stumble slightly forward.
-Crap I'm falling!- "Falling command recognized, activate rocket-boots" the next second, Saito had already dived straight into the portal, leaving behind him a puff of smoke, as the rocket boots, standard assault armor equipment, had thrown him back into the Tokyo's sky.
He was home.
He was home, screaming, and crying his heart out because he was also flying on rocket boots who he knew not how to stop. Also, because he was in mid-air, but was soon going to crash against the side of a building.
As he yelled to the top of his lungs, he covered his face, which had the helmet on, luckily, and could only think –Stop! STOP!- clenching his teethes for the impact.
Impact which never came, because he suddenly stopped, and slowly descended down into a back alley of Tokyo.
Louise had closed the portal after the tremor, not thinking Saito would have ended up on the other side…but when she looked around, and couldn't find him, she became desperate.
"I think he erroneously flew through the thing, miss" the soldier who had been instructing Saito said, shrugging:
"Wherever he is, I'm sure he'll be back pretty soon" he added, going back to cleaning his own rifle.
"Why are you so sure of it?" the girl replied.
"Meh, he's in love with you, pheromones are all around the air, and since you're in love with him too, do the world a favor and confess already" as the soldier finished cleaning the rifle.
"How…how do you know that!" Louise yelled reddening like a bright red lava lamp.
"Pheromones!" was the reply of the soldier "Our suits are highly advanced, we pick them up, and use them too. That's why we either ease up tensions or scare the shit out of our mother in laws!" with a happy tone he chuckled, before standing up and finally saying "time to go to work".
Another tremor, then Louise finally looked up in the sky, and gasped. There were hundreds of dragons bashing against the magic shield, as strange white things literally hit it with strength, not caring if some dragons fell down with them.
Up, on the walls of the academy, the machine guns began firing off rounds after rounds, as dragons plummeted down once hit, the sound became like a battlefield. The soldiers in the trenches below engaged firstly in fire barrages to the advancing fire dragon whelps, but when they got too close they actually resorted to their claws or to their nanites sword, which easily cut through even the thickest of hides.
The Ondine Corps provided assistance, as Guiche the Impaler of Dragons, albeit bitterly, was in the first line, throwing steel spears at the dragon's throats.
"Aim for the throats! The throats!"
"First line, fire!" one of the snipers on the wall muttered, and with a loud explosion, bullets flew precisely all in the same spot on the Ancient dragon's head, slightly cracking what looked like a tough exterior.
"Second line, fire!" if it had been but one sniper, it could have been slightly explained. Instead there were not less than sixteen snipers, divided into four lines of fire, which fired at steady intervals in the same spot of the beast's head.
When a bigger dragon managed to make its way into the academy soil, a Massagon moved on to intercept him, making the ground shake and letting out a primal roar its fists condensed plasma spheres into his hands, and clashing them both like in a clap against the dragon's head, it crushed it down to the side.
"Easy" the giant beast muttered, before reassuming the plasma barrage.
"When are they dropping down?" the Commander yelled to the officer in charge.
"One minute! They are preparing to crash land for maximum impact" as the reply came by the communication officers, another ping arrived from the fleet commander:
"We've got a retrofitted plasma turret ready to fire. Can you get us the triangulation?"
"Working on it" as the commander said that, the order was immediately rerouted to the sergeants on the field, who then rerouted it to their soldiers.
Battle orders of such caliber were on a *volunteer* basic: you could accept them beforehand, or before being ordered to go never the less.
So, when a reply came in that someone had actually volunteered, everyone's mind went back to the battle, except for the Primus of Genocide, who looked at who had actually volunteered and turned around.
"…he went" he muttered. Henrietta and Eleonore looked at him raising an eyebrow, and when they looked around, Eleonore nearly fainted from the shock:
"I'm bashing him up! Wounded or not, I'm bashing him up when he comes back!"
It was better now. He was wearing Soldier armor. One of those old models which are usually kept as emergency armor. It brought him back memories. Memories of when he wasn't even considered to be worthy of anything but Soldier Class. Memories of when he was spitted upon, ordered to keep impossible grounds or do impossible things. Yet he had managed it all, he had survived Elite Classes, and he had become a Commander of Genocide, Elite class. If he had to die anyway in a couple of weeks, for his brain shutting down, with his organs failing, in a painful way, it was better to die off in a blaze of glory, or, in that case, plasma. Furthermore, the Ai was his fault all along. He hadn't thought about the Gandalfr thing working on the Ai, nor the fact that it was only inches away from going Rogue. This was his mistake, his solution. As the rocket boots kicked in, he began dashing through the battlefield in front of him, pain suppressants provided by the armor, and tranquilizers in his body, he was actually giggling ,even as messages kept popping into the side of his helmet telling him to stop, or get back. He closed the feeds and kept dashing off, twirling around, avoiding dragons who tried their best to claw him down. Then the Ancient dragon stopped, turning its gaze at him, and unleashing a pure white column of plasma. It hadn't used it against the academy for fear of killing the owner, but against him, so out of range of harm, it didn't matter. As they ray grew closer, Cog could feel but a single emotion: Determination. With that in mind he managed by the nick of time to avoid it, and keep spinning around, until a louder noise distracted him, in the midst of dragons falling like flies. An explosion, then another, as more fell down. He looked and got a hold of the side of a wing, belonging to what seemed like a … bomber jet? What was a bomber jet doing there? Looking inside the cockpit, he recognized the pilot and began laughing out hard.
"So now it's you saving me! Well what a surprise! The pup has grown!"
On the other side of the cockpit, Saito opened up a radio feed with the outside, and, sure enough, he started receiving communications:
"I…explain yourself" the voice came from the Primus of Genocide, who, down below, had seen appearing out of nowhere a fighting jet.
"Well…" and Saito explained it quickly.
When he had reappeared into the Tokyo skies, he had no clue on what to do. That is, until he realized there was going to be a moon eclipse soon enough. So, when the words of the truck driver came through, he suddenly moved towards the nearest Japanese Self Defense force base and…made his way through with the state of the art technologically advanced armor he was wearing.
"Really, the bullets didn't stop me, and it even scrambled their anti-air missiles! It was like a walk in the park! Even the grenades didn't explode near me!" as he said that, he made the plane turn to the side, to avoid a kamikaze dragon of sort.
"Now, what do we have to do?" he asked again in the radio.
"Have Cog stop acting like a hero of sorts, and have him, at all cost, avoid jumping straight into the Ancient Dragon's mouth"
"Ops." Was all Saito could say, because, in actuality, Cog had already waved at him and had jumped straight down.
"Ops? I do not like to be replied with ops" the Primus replied from his place, as another feed came straight in.
"I'm straight above the Ancient dragon! Use my location for triangulation procedures!" it was Cog's voice, who was, in truth, holding tightly to a set of cables and metal plates, staying low on the bioweapon's back.
He was looking for a way inside the machine, but couldn't seem to find any. That was when it actually rose from the beast's back, the Demonic Suit Mark Two, that is, and stood watching him.
The Ancient dragon stopped moving, as its central system had momentarily exited the premises to face off an intruder.
Cog stood up, on the dragon's back. Then, they both stared at each other, the Ai with its claws, and Cogs with his rifle.
-Pulse ammo loaded-
The Ai tried transforming into a swarm of micro nanites, but was swept away by a pulse shot, which released a wave of Psych energy straight in front of the rifle, sending some nanites to scatter, and forcing her to keep her human-like appearance.
"You are a problem to the owner" the Ai beeped, claws becoming pointy swords.
"You are a problem for the world!" Cog replied angrily, as glyphs began appearing all around him. "If this is my final push, than let it be" he whispered, as his brain was beginning to shut down once more. A final glyph, and then, as the Ai charged through, a wave of pure icy wind moved forward, freezing her into place, right there, as Cog fell down on the Dragon's back.
"I need not defeat you…" he muttered, "But keep you in place I will…"
As the suit beeped a final *Strike inbound, evacuate the premises* he closed his eyes, whispering:
"Death by war, never death by age"
Had it been a plasma strike, then yes, Cog would have died straight there, without hope nor any way to survive, as it, instead, was, the strike came from both the Crusaders fleets and Cog's bomber jet, throwing him from the shockwave off the dragons back, and as the Dragon's plating began to dwindle, revealing muscles and blood underneath it, the triangulation was finished and the shot burst forward.
As it slowly descended, the ball of pure green light radiated a sort of tranquility, even when the dragons, who had been circling atop their *mother* began being turned to ash. When it finally touched the dragon's back, the explosion brought forward charred the ground, and the resulting shockwave even creaked open the academy's walls, and destroyed the psych shields. Saito had no choice but eject himself from the plane, to quickly land, later on, on a patch of charred grass.
As he removed his seatbelt, to run towards the remaining charred body of the dragon, he couldn't help but pray for Cog's safety. When the Primus had ordered him to shoot Cog down from there, he had thought him mad, but considering the armor he was wearing, and the one Cog was had slight differences, it was a do or die situation.
As he was the first one to reach the site, all he saw was devastation, as more pieces of metal, or burned flesh, fell down from the giant figure resembling a dragon. That's when he saw a humanoid like body face down in the grass. The armor he wore was broken, and his helmet was in pieces, yet, as Saito grew near and turned him to the sight, Cog's eyes were open.
"Cog! You're alive!" Saito yelled, but then stopped.
Yes, his eyes were open, but devoid of life.
"Cog?" he asked once more.
"Come on Cog, you pulled this trick once" Saito said again, starting to pull him up.
"You can't fake being dead again" Saito added, holding him up as he began walking back towards the academy.
"You simply can't. I mean, it's pushing it. No character dies twice, or thrice in your case, and comes back…the audience doesn't like it" Saito whispered, as tears began falling.
"Come on Cog. Come on, you're Elite Class right? You shouldn't be dead" Saito whispered.
"Now you're going to wake up, or tell me something funny, like that you're back from the dead, and then we'll laugh it off after Eleonore bashes you up" Saito added.
"Maybe we'll have a drink of some sort, right?"
"Or maybe I'll bring you to meet my parents. They're nice folks, they'll understand what is going to happen."
"Come on Cog…"
As Saito stopped talking, he couldn't but silently cry, as the corpse of his friend was carried by him all the way to the academy, even if midway Louise ran up to him, with Tabitha and Henrietta, he didn't stop at all. He didn't stop even when Eleonore began crying at the sight, or when Guiche and Reynal bowed their head. He didn't stop when the soldiers of the Dystopia offered to carry him, or when the Pope's double began making a prayer for the fallen.
He stopped only in front of the Primus of Genocide, who slowly grabbed Cog's body and nodded tears running down his face.
"Once elite always elite" he whispered "Why must the young sacrifice themselves for the elderly?".
"This is payback for Truan-8" Cog whispered then, before falling asleep with the biggest grin in his entire life.
"So, you sure about this?" the voice came from Saito's side, as he was readying himself in his groom tuxedo.
"As sure as always" Saito replied to his best man, who grinned back, grabbing his cane and standing up.
"So, when are you getting your eyes fixed?" Saito asked, as he moved towards the altar, where the marriage between him and his beloved was going to be celebrated soon.
"As soon as I get Eleonore to stop being afraid of hospitals" Cog replied back, or better yet, Jacques. It seemed that for high heroics and sacrifices, the Dystopia actually issued names, instead of medals, so when they asked him what name he wanted, he had turned to Eleonore who had replied:
"Jacques des Ondines is not a bad name, right?" with a smile that meant that refusal would make her even madder than what she already was.
The fear of hospitals of Eleonore actually came from her fear of needles. One couldn't travel the universe without having basic vaccinations, furthermore, with her pregnant and all, it would be a risk *not* to also give her all the usual hormone based things to help in a safe pregnancy.
The result was that, apart from Eleonore actually proudly showing a bust which could rival Cattleya's, she would also refuse to go anywhere near a hospital for fear of getting *some extra punctures*.
As Saito patiently waited, he couldn't help but see at those who were present, and how they were dressed. Professor Colbert had Kirche tightly under check, because Agnes had been placed between the two, and her sight could stop even a bull from charging, Tabitha was sitting with Henrietta, and her twin sister, once pardoned and understood, was actually left in charge of the country, Bidashal was present, together with Eri and Luctiana, albeit Guiche and Reynal were behind them, watching them with a distressed sight.
Tiffania was sitting next to Fouquet, who had, her too, been pardoned. Montmorency was next to Malicorne, and on the other side, obviously, was all the La Vallière family and the nobility which owed them fealty. In first line, there was Eleonore, sporting a four months pregnant tummy, with Cattleya smiling happily next to her, and the Duchess looking like she was about to charge straight for Saito's neck.
Celebrating the marriage, was a Paladin, one of the Dystopia Paladins, which actually made Saito understand why Cog's had given so little notice of the pope's ones, and also one who kind of liked to read the entirety of the marriage liturgy. This one was broader, bigger, and wielded on his back what looked like a golden scythe and a pike. It was astonishing, to say the least.
His warm smile made even him fuzzy inside, like there was nothing to fear. Heck, he'd marry him instead of Louise had he not been straight.
When the organ began resounding, the spouse made her appearance, walking nervously as she had everyone's sight on her. Bringing her to the altar was the duke de la Vallière, while being her maid of honor had been sought by everyone of female sex around her, she had given it to Siesta, who was happily sporting a wonderful light blue dress.
As the Duke brought his daughter up to the altar, and then moved to her seat next to the Duchess, Saito couldn't have been sure about it, but he'd have thought he'd seen him smile a bit and cry a bit.
"So…" as the Paladin began the liturgy, Cog's head started churning out happy thoughts. He had actually over-exaggerated his fears of death, what he had thought would have brought him to die in less than a couple of months was actually nothing more than a narcoleptic disease followed with the burning of the eyes' nerves. All in all, nothing unfixable. Sure, he wouldn't be able to see Saito's wedding, but he was pretty much sure he was going to see his newborn son, because it was a son, soon. Maybe this one would grow up not hating him like the black plague or something.
When the Yes came by, Cog grabbed a small wooden box, and opening it, slowly passed it in the air, until it was grabbed by Saito, who taking the rings in it, passed the now empty box back to him.
With the vows done, and the kissing, they were now bound as husband and wife, and actually by one who had legal right to do so.
All in all…
It was a Happy End.
*Final Thoughts from the Author*
All in all it's been a fun writing, and most probably it's also going to get some rewriting done later on. With this, the fanfiction is completed, but maybe (I repeat the maybe) a sort of *Twelve years later* might be done as an Omake. Still in the maybe thing.
Hope you enjoyed it as much as I enjoyed writing it.
And as a bunny I know would say:
That's all folks! Sincerely,