Arise Serpentor Arise

Bubblegum Crisis is property of AIC/Youmex
Toshimichi Suzuki and Kenichi Sonoda created Bubblegum Crisis
GI Joe is Property of Hasbro and Marvel/Sunbow entertainment all rights reserved.
Gundam and all related names are property of Bandai and Sunrise
Mobile Suit Gundam was created by Yoshiyuki Tomino
Arise Serpentor Arise originally written by Buzz Dixon

Author's notes: Due to an email I've received, I must point out for this fic you must have a working knowledge of Bubblegum Crisis, and Mobile Suit Gundam. So, I must do a little educating, so stow the crap and listen up!
Sylia Stingray, Priss Asagiri, Linna Yamazaki, Nene Romanova, Sylvie and the hardsuits, please refer to the Bubblegum Crisis (The original 2032-2033 OAV series)
Also later on in this fic I'm going to be introducing Aina Sahalin and the Black Tri Stars (Gaia, Ortega and Mash) please refer to Mobile Suit Gundam and Mobile Suit Gundam the 08th MS Team.
For information on the MS-05B Zaku I, MS-06F, MS-06J, and MS-06S Zaku II; MS-07B and B3 Gouf; MS-09 Dom, MSM-07 Z'gok, MSM-04 Acguy; later on the RX-78-2 Gundam, RX-79g Gundam, RGM-79g GM and the RX-77 Guncannon please refer to Mobile Suit Gundam, and also to this URL: .net
Enough of that crap.

Chapter I: Downtime brought to a screeching halt

"Sucker, you are outta luck!" exclaimed Roadblock from the pitcher's mound

"I'm going nail that sucker right outta here!" Priss retorted at the plate. A month has past since the destruction of the Apsalus and the Joes deserved a little downtime and organized a friendly baseball game. Roadblock threw a fastball and Priss slammed the ball into right field, "It's outta here!"

"I got it, I got!" Nene ran trying to get ahead of the ball but it sailed over her head, "I don't got it."

Sitting under a tree, Shipwreck composed a letter to his girlfriend of the month as the baseball Priss hit came down on his head, then rebounded in into General Hawk's hand. "A Joe is supposed to be alert Shipwreck, if a pop fly can hit you, Cobra can." Shipwreck scrambled to attention as Hawk tossed the ball to him while walking off.

The GI Joe command staff toured the grounds noting that the team has been slacking off lately. "Weren't you little soft on him, General?" complained Beachhead who was dissatisfied by the lack of professionalism on base.

"The team has seen a lot action Beachhead, it's good for them to relax. The Apsalus incident really took a lot out of us." Flint replied.

"Maybe if I were in charge that would all change."

"But you're not, first comes Hawk, then Duke, then Grey Fox, then me and finally you," Flint reminded Beachhead of everyone's position in the chain of command.

"Perhaps that will all change someday?"

"Actually, there is merit in both arguments made by Hawk and Flint. Granted we are entitled to a break. But on the other hand ever since the introduction of the Zaku and now Mobile Armor, has made Cobra much more dangerous, and we must be on a heightened state of alert." Sylia said, the introduction of the Knight Sabers' prototype Hardsuits has been the catalyst for Cobra to begin their own production of Hardsuits, the old balance of power.

"Excuse me," asked a female sergeant as she climbed out of a jeep. "I'm looking for the CO of this outfit."

"You've found him. General Hawk."

"Sgt. Sylvie Anderson, sir." Replied Sylvie as she saluted Hawk, handing over her file and her orders.

Thumbing through Sylvie's file, Hawk noticed she was a member of the 101st Airborne, a demolition and anti-armor specialist; Also recently reenlisted. "I see you've requested this assignment after you reenlisted."

"Yes sir, I figured I could have a blast on this team," she smiled.

"Yeah, well let's get one thing straight Anderson, that you will maintain military discipline at all times, and I advise you to stay away from Sgt. Asagiri." Beachhead told the new Sgt. getting within inches of her. Sylvie had to breath through her mouth so she didn't experience Beachhead's lack of deodorant.


"Because she is trouble."

A sly smile grew on her lips. "I like trouble." Sylvie told Beachhead as she noticed Priss heading towards the barracks. "Hey Sarge!"

Catching a glimpse of the new arrival, "Sylvie?"

"Hey Priss,"

The two shared the moment of a friendly hug. "I see the Army had enough brains to keep a beer guzzling, foul mouthed ass kicker like you."

"It's great to see you again Sylvie, it going be like we were in 101st again. Come on I got someone for you to meet."

Observing the motor pool. The command staff watched Lift Ticket perform regular maintenance on a Tomahawk with Lifeline "assisting." "Hey Lifeline hand me that crescent wrench," Lift Ticket asked as he worked.


"For crying out loud, why the hell not?!"

"Because you're asking me to help with maintenance of the Tomahawk's weapons which goes against my principles."

For a guy who doesn't like violence, he sure chose a strange bunch to hang around with. Pacifists in GI Joe, what is happening to this outfit?"

"Beachhead, are you familiar with the Hippocratic oath?"


"According to the oath, a physician is obligated to relieve the suffering of others regardless of politics, or their uniform and are forbidden under any circumstance to bring suffering on their patients. Some doctors and medical professionals would follow that code of medical ethics to the letter."

Beachhead didn't say anything, he hated it when Sylia was right; in his opinion he didn't really care for Sylia or her damned well above average intelligence. Next the group saw Cross Country working on his HAVOC. "You call this military discipline? Cross Country is putting a CD player in his HAVOC!"

"Now don't you fret none, Beachhead. This here is fighting music," Cross Country drawled.

"Oh why's that?"

"Every time I play it, someone wants to punch me out!"

"Like last Friday." Sylia mentioned

"What happen?" Hawk asked, also Flint, Duke and Beachhead were curious since the four were off base either on a mission or official business. So Sylia was left with task of temporary top kick*

"Cross Country made the grave mistake of putting a Garth Brooks album in the juke box in the company bar, when I came in I saw a fire ax in the juke box, Priss receiving the applauds of the establishment and Cross Country mourning the loss of his favorite Garth Brooks' album." Sylia understood where was Priss was coming from, she hated country music too, but Priss had to be punished, her pay was to be docked for the repairs to the juke box.

At an abandoned warehouse on New York's waterfront. Cobra Commander watched as his Vipers suit up armed their Zaku I and Zaku II Hardsuits and his Crimson Guards suiting up in the new Dom and Gouf Hardsuits. Scrap Iron and Destro were making final adjustments on several BAT groups in Zaku I Hardsuits. "according to my sources, the GI Joe team has been on its collective ass for a while. This is our time to strike!" Only to himself, he was grateful the GI Joe team intervened against Sahalin and his Apsalus, he and the rest of his senior staff would have gone up in a flash of light. The sounds of servos snapped him back to the present, the Doms and Goufs were being loaded on a couple of big rigs, along with the Stuns and Zakus.

Back at GI Joe headquarters in C&C, Dial Tone and Mainframe were playing Star Trek Elite Force on COOP play blasting away Borg Drones with phaser rifles. "What in the bloody blue blazes are you doing? You suppose to be monitoring our outer perimeter." Berated Beachhead, a multi-billion dollar computer wasn't meant for playing games, but Dial Tone, Mainframe, Breaker and Cypher always broke that rule.

"Relax Beachhead sometimes a diversion from staring at monitors can prevent you getting the thousand yard stare?" Mainframe said, cycling through the security cameras until one showed a column of big rigs.

The alarms sound as the first big rig smashed opens the front gate. As each rig stopped, the trailers would collapse open, releasing Stuns, Zakus, Goufs and Doms. "COBRA!"

In C&C, the command staff watched with shocked surprise as Cobra began their assault on the base. "Duke form a defense line try to keep Cobra away from our Command Center. Grey Fox mobilize your Knight Sabers."

"Yes sir," Duke and Grey Fox said in unison.

In the quarters of Cover Girl and Wolf; Priss, Cover Girl and Sylvie who was known as Firestorm were knocking back some beer as Sylvie was telling Cover Girl, the night of Fort Campbell's infamous Marine Massacre. She noticed how Priss and Cover Girl looked at each other. "Is there something I should know about you two?" She asked

"Actually, Sylvie. Courtney is my lover," Priss revealed as she took Cover Girl's hand into her's.

"Oh…." Sylvie got out, she was about to speak until the alert sounded, Dial Tone's voice rang through the PA. "All personnel we are under attack! Repeat under attack! All personnel are now on combat status 1! Wolf, Dagger and Cypher, report to the ready room!"

"Aw shit! Time to punch the ol' time clock!" Priss complained

Mauler Tanks and HAVOCs began to mobilize and attack the approaching Cobra forces, "All Dom units engage the approaching the armored units. All Goufs and Zaku Is provide fire support for the Doms!" The Commander ordered. Several Doms armed with Raketen Bazookas sped towards the Joes' armored units while the Goufs fired their shield mounted 25mm Vulcan guns and the Zaku Is fired their bazookas. The fire from the Goufs was able to pierce the thick armor of the Maulers.

The Joes' defense line began to crumble until the Stuns completely encircled them. "Why is Cobra Commander using Stuns and Zakus? The Stuns are fast, but the lack the armor or the punch of the old HISS Tanks. The Zakus can't take much of a beating either." Hawk commented as he shot out the eye sensor of a Zaku II with his handgun.

"Maybe ol' Chrome Dome is running low on…"

"Hold on!" Hawk interrupted as he saw Dom and Gouf suits approaching.

"What are those?" Duke asked

"Cobra Hardsuits, must be new models!"

"Superb! Cobra forces Advance!" Cobra Commander ordered.

"Unwise Commander…" Started Tomax

"You should keep some our forces…." Continued Xamot

"In reserve!" The Twins finished in unison."

"Balderdash you twin morons! You're just jealous my authority!" The Commander told the Crimson Guard Commanders as he committed more Cobra Hardsuits to the battle. "At long last the Joes are doomed, and all because of my brilliant leadership!" The Commander watched as his forces continue to attack.

"Prepare for hand-to-hand combat Joes!" Hawk ordered just before he saw three Goufs were struck down by beam fire and two Doms destroyed by a hail of missile fire.

Standing at the top of the main building were the Knight Sabers in their Hardsuits with beam rifles in hand and Wolf holding not only her beam rifle but her 6-tube rocket launcher. "Knight Sabers, it's showtime!" Cried Grey Fox, diving into the fray followed by Wolf and Cypher, Dagger pulled out her beam sabers from the compartments of the legs of her Hardsuit before diving into the fight.

"Ah shit!" The Commander grumbled, "All Doms and Goufs engage the Knight Sabers!"

Touching down, Wolf discarded her rocket launcher and pulled out one of her beam sabers, stabbing a Dom as it sped towards her right through the chest. Suddenly a Zaku II grabbed her in a bear hug. The Zaku began to tighten its grip, crushing Wolf within her suit. Activating the suit's strength booster, Wolf broke free, then drove her fingers through the chest armor and lifted the Cobra Hardsuit over her head. "HOLY CRAP!" Cobra Commander watched in abject fear seeing Zaku and Viper operator being lifted over Wolf's head. Noticing a Gouf preparing his 25mm Vulcan gun, Wolf threw the Zaku at the Gouf.

In the motor pool, Covergirl was getting her Wolverine ready to move out as Firestorm ran in with a Stinger missile launcher and a pair of M-4s. Firestorm looked at Covergirl's Wolverine for a moment; on the missile launcher, the words "Sealed With A Kiss," were stenciled along with a lip print. "Who were those in the body armor?"

"The Knight Sabers," replied Covergirl as she started up her Wolverine. "A high tech unit formed by Grey Fox."

The Wolverine pulled out of the motor pool and approached Cobra's left flank. "Say good night, babe!" quipped Firestorm, firing a Stinger at a Stun. As the Stinger struck the Stun, several BATs controlled Zaku Is headed for the Wolverine.

"Say adios you assholes!" Covergirl fired a full rack of missiles; some the missiles hit their targets while a couple of Zakus took proximity damage.

The few still functioning, the BAT controlled Zaku Is lifted their bazookas and fired at the Wolverine. "OH SHIT!" screamed Firestorm and Covergirl in unison, before bailing out, Covergirl grabbed her M-4. As the two ran, a Gouf snared Covergirl by the neck with its heat rod.

Spinning around Firestorm readied her Stinger missiles. "Fuck! I can't get a clear shot!" she swore. After taking down a Zaku II, Wolf quickly saw Covergirl being strangled by the Gouf's heat rod, in a split second Wolf fired her beam rifle destroying the Gouf's heat rod. Covergirl fell to her knees gasping for air. Getting her shot, Firestorm took it, firing two stingers into the Gouf's chest.

As she fought, Dagger was thankful for the magnetically coated joints, she could attack in a smooth, fluid motion with no lag time. With her beam saber, Dagger sliced a Dom in half.

The Joes watched the Knight Sabers taking down the Cobra Hardsuits, and Covergirl and Firestorm fighting them off as well. "Looks like we got ourselves a second front! Let's take 'em apart! YO JOE!" General Hawk followed by several other Joes with guns blazing

By now everything was going to hell, Cobra Commander watched his decimated Doms and Goufs fall back and retreat. Cobra Commander figured that was the best COA. "Retreat! Abandon the BATs and flee!" The commander ordered his remaining Stuns and Zaku IIs.

As Cobra pulled out, the Joes finished off the remaining Zaku Is. Hawk surveyed the damage, taking note of the wounded and the dead. Despite us winning, we deserved to lose. Hawk sadly thought, with how lax the team got, Cobra should have done more damage.

Later that evening, in Hawk's office, he was going over some paperwork, and some reports about this morning's incident when Sylia came in with some of her reports. "General, here are some more of those damage figures you've asked for."

"What about the prototypes?"

"The suits took some mild damage, beam rifles and sabers are currently being recharged."

Leaning back in his chair, Hawk sighed as he looked at Sylia. Looking back, she could tell that everything that transpired took a toll on her CO and friend. "Sylia, what happen out there?"

"I don't know," Sylia threw up her hands as she sat down, "I think, we've gotten complacent, Clayton. Just because Cobra is lying low, doesn't mean, we can have a spring break. But I do feel we are entitled to a little downtime, just as long we maintain a constant state of readiness."

Hawk leaned on his desk, "Sylia, I think, we've gotten sloppy, and I know who can whip this outfit into shape."

"Sir, not him!" Sylia knew who Hawk was talking about. The person in question would eat Priss alive if he got in her face. Hell, even Sylia was intimidated by him, and that ain't easy.

"Sylia, we both agree that we need to do something about this situation before it gets worse," Hawk told her, and he was right. That last attack could be of things yet to come.

"Clayton, whatever your decision is you have my support."

"I appreciate that Sylia." Hawk summed up a half smile and Sylia turned and walked out. I can never get over how attractive she is, he thought, and then he shook his head of those somewhat lecherous thoughts. Oh for god sakes, I'm her commanding officer and her friend. Hell! I'm old enough to be her father.

15 minutes later in the gym, Sylia worked out on the punching bag while Priss held it for her. Sylia always worked up a good sweat this way, also the punching bag has been rather therapeutic, she used to do this back at West Point before exams. "So Hawk is calling for a special DI to whip this unit into shape?"

"Yep," Sylia answered with labored breath, continuing to punch the bag, "He felt this base was turning into a country club."

"I seem to notice a nine hole golf course being set up," Priss laughed

"Not funny."

"So do you know this DI we're getting."

"Yeah, he's called Sgt. Slaughter. A DI assigned to the GI Joe team. But he handles problem recruits. The guy makes Beachhead look tame."


Sylia stopped punching and walked over to a bench, then pulled a towel and a bottle of water out of her gym bag. "Priss, we've gotten too complacent. Throughout history, the greatest threat to the military was complacency."

"How's that?"

"During the Roman Empire, the Romans extended their empire in all directions. They were the most powerful military force on earth at the time, who had a strict sense of discipline within the ranks. Their egos clouded the judgment of many military officers as discipline began breakdown, and the Roman government was becoming increasingly corrupt. With madmen as Emperors…"

"Oh? In what way?"

"Well, during the reign of Emperor Caligula, he knocked up his own sister, gave her a rather crude abortion and wolfed down a light snack in the process."

"I don't understand?" Priss asked, she didn't know much history especially ancient history.

"Caligula took a knife, cut open the womb and ate the fetus," Sylia explained, she noticed Priss turned a little pale

"That is some nasty shit!"

"Yes Priss," Sylia continued, "Due to the absolute corruption of the government, factional fighting and the breakdown of their military. Tribes like the Gaul, the Huns and the Visigoths brought the Roman Empire to their knees. Once the greatest Empire on Earth, destroyed by the very people they've conquered. We could face the same fate with Cobra, because we've gotten complacent, also political bickering and individual agendas blinding people to clear and present dangers."

Hearing all this made Priss chuckle a bit. "What's so funny,"

"Well, I asked a simple question and you gave me a history lesson."

"Priss, there is old saying, that those who don't learn the past mistake of history are doomed to repeat it. A prime example would be Germany and Japan, since in their history books, they refuse to teach some of the darker chapters of their history, such as the rise of Hitler and the Nazi Reich, and the Holocaust; The Japanese will teach about the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki but not the Bataan Death March or the bombing of Pearl Harbor."

Back on Cobra Island, Cobra Commander called a senior staff meeting. "I was pleased on how the Goufs and Doms functioned in combat, but the BATs in the Zaku Is were more like wind-up dolls!"

"The BATs were perfect," Dr. Mindbender defensively said, "except that the Zaku I suits overloaded the BATs improved AI and you should have deployed them correctly without the Zaku I suits!"

Leaning back in his chair, Cobra Commander was very calm before he let Mindbender have it. "Dr. Mindbender, you are Cobra's Chief Science Officer," The Commander calmly mentioned before he reminded him of another obscure fact, "There's nothing in your file claiming you're a military genius!" Then the Commander rose from his chair, "If you'll excuse me gentlemen (and I use the term in the most broadest possible sense), I have other matters to attend to."

After the Commander left, Dr. Mindbender gave an exasperated sigh as he rubbed his temples.

Entering his office, Cobra Commander was greeted by his aide Caroline. Caroline stood an inch shorter of Cynthia with shoulder length brown hair. She filled in for Cynthia during her assignment on Project Apsalus and replaced after her death. Despite being rather ruthless, Cobra Commander was very fond of Cynthia, the only person he ever trusted, the only person who has seen the Commander without his helmet or faceplate. Cobra Commander would even freely allowed her to give her opinions and suggestions on his plans, ideas and decisions; he valued her inputs. "Do you want me to get you some coffee, sir?" Caroline asked, snapping Cobra Commander out of his deep thought.

"Uh, yes I would like some coffee, my dear," he responded, then he went to his desk and turned on his computer. "Computer, this is Cobra Commander, recognize voice ID."


"Authorization Cobra Commander sigma-5-tau-3-8."

"Authorization confirmed."

"Computer, I want access to available data on the Knight Sabers' Hardsuits, include recent combat data from all Cobra Hardsuit computers."

The computer began compiling all requested data. First was the YHS-01 Hardsuit assigned to Grey Fox, a general purpose command Hardsuit with a high output beam rifle and beam sabers. The YHS-01 was capable of analyzing and processing large amounts of tactical and intelligence data. Next was the YHS-02 Hardsuit assigned to Wolf was a general purpose and assault Hardsuit; the YHS-02 not only carried conventional small arms and beam weapons, but a six tube rocket launcher, a 20 mm cannon and a Hyper-Bazooka. How much firepower can they put on that suit? The Commander thought.

The YHS-02 also possessed a 'strength booster' that could boost the enhanced strength of the Hardsuit. No wonder that woman was able to lift a Zaku over her head. Cobra Commander realized, while Caroline handed him a cup of coffee. Wolf actually scares him; he has never seen a woman with such an iron will or the anger that she would be feared in hell. He would never want to face her alone. Actually he had fought Wolf alone before, during the operation to capture of the prototype hardsuits, Cobra captured the suit along with Wolf and Covergirl. The two managed bring the house down. There he faced off against Wolf in his Zaku, and she fought like a woman possessed.

Getting back to the hardsuits, the next shown was the YHS-03 hardsuit assigned to Dagger. The YHS-03 was not only a general purpose hardsuit but a close combat suit. Apparently the YHS-03 only equipped with a pair of beam sabers. According to the data, the YHS-03 had a stealth device, that could be used during insertion missions. Also the joints of her suit have been magnetically coated; the data indicated that this reduced the friction in suit's joints to near zero, so it won't impede the user's fast reflexes and allow more freedom of movement. The coating process is unknown.

Finally was the YHS-04 assigned to Cypher. The YHS-04 was a general purpose hardsuit, but a communications and Electronic Warfare suit. This suit was armed with a scaled down version of the prototype beam rifle. The YHS-04 was also equipped with latest ECM and sensor packages and also is able to interface with any computer system. It would seem the YHS-04 is a hacker's dream come true.

The prototype hardsuits had a frame of high density titanium alloy; the armor and shields were composed of a ceramic/titanium composite, the process of creating the composite was unknown. The computer also provided data that the YHS-01 and YHS-02 could be equipped with upgrade modules. "Computer, explain upgrade modules."

"There is no available information on the upgrade modules."

Turning off his computer, Cobra Commander removed his helmet and faceplate, he began to drink his coffee. Hmm, it appears the US military has developed a far more advanced set of suits than our Zakus, Goufs and Doms. Apparently its quality against quantity.

Breaking his train of thought, a small beeping came from a panel on his desk. "Yes," he said after pressing the intercom button.

"Sir, I want to inform you the shipment has arrived."

"Very well, I'll be at the airfield shortly."

Arriving at the airfield 20 minutes later, Cobra Commander with a shocked expression under his faceplate as he saw 5 huge transport planes. "What are these?!"

"I believe they're the new Gaw Attack Carriers," Caroline answered.

The Commander approached a Colonel who was supervising the offloading of the Gaw's cargo. "What do you have here, Colonel?"

"Well, new fighters, armored vehicles and hardsuits."

The Commander inspected the new hardsuits and they looked meaner than the Gouf B3 custom. "Commander these are the Z'Gok, Z'Gok-E, Hy-Gogg and Acguy. They're the new amphibious suits."

"I see," Cobra Commander remembered being handed the design specs and authorizing the project just after the Dom and Gouf were entered into activate duty.

The Colonel also showed the Commander the new Dopp fighters and Magella Attack Tanks. Cobra Commander was certainly pleased with the new equipment, but then Caroline stepped in with some news for the Commander. "They what?"

"Dr. Mindbender apparently called a senior staff meeting while keeping you out of the loop," Caroline answered, being a Crimson Guard, she did have her contacts.

"I see, well shall we look in on their little tea party?"

In the senior staff conference room, Dr. Mindbender addressed Destro, the Baroness, Xamot and Tomax that Cobra yearns for a new leader since Cobra Commander hasn't been quite effective. "Since we don't have the time to find a new leader, I suggest we create one."

The Senior staff gasped at Mindbender's idea. "Mindbender, what you're proposing is close to playing god," Destro stated, he knew what Mindbender was offering was a step up from Parents asking for designer babies.

"Destro, we must act quickly, our lives are at stake if Cobra Commander finds out." Mindbender turned on a large wall monitor showing the double helix of DNA. "I propose through gene therapy and genetic engineering to create the Cobra Emperor.

"Sgt. punch up the security cameras in the conference room." The Commander ordered as he and Caroline entered the security office.

"Yes, Commander," the Tele Viper brought up the camera for the conference room. "I'll patch in the audio, sir."

Cobra Commander intently listened on Mindbender explaining how he was going to create this 'Cobra Emperor.' To say the least Cobra Commander was livid that his own command staff was trying to replace him; this was just as bad as Sahalin and his Apsalus. "Get a squad of Crimson Guards down there, but have them wait until I get there."

The command staff continued with their planning until the doors blew open revealing Cobra Commander, Caroline and a squad of Crimson Guards all with weapons drawn. "Well Gentlemen, what do we have here? Hmm. Perhaps plotting the most vile act of base treason!"

"If you get rid of us there will be no one to follow your orders," Destro mocked.

"You lie! My guard is loyal and will not take part in your coup d état!"

"Oh really?" Destro replied, all Xamot and Tomax did was give a nonverbal command and the Crimson Guards switched sides. "You were saying?"

Noticing the turn the situation has taken, Cobra Commander figured a more tactful approach is required. "Gentlemen, I'm willing to admit I've error on several occasions and perhaps this Emperor of yours can rally the troops. I command you to create this being. SIEG COBRA!" Cobra Commander order before leaving, "Get someone to replace those doors."

"Sir, you're not going along with this?" Caroline exclaimed as the two walked down the corridor.

"Of course not, I didn't become Cobra Commander by being stupid or careless."

"Of course not, sir." Smiled the aide, she was being sincere

"Let Mindbender create his Emperor out from DNA mish mash. I'll manipulate it like a puppeteer to a puppet. I'll be an even greater power behind the throne!"

At 0400 hours a bugle played reveille over PA system waking the Joes with much protest with the exception of Beachhead. Assembling on exercise field, the team was greeted with a bright spotlight mounted on a Humvee. "Good Morning Sleepyheads!" Bellowed a big bull of a man in wearing porkpie hat, "I'm glad that you hauled lazy carcasses out of bed! Now you worthless sacks of crap have had too soft! You suppose to be keeping us safe from Cobra! Starting to today that gonna change! Give your hearts to America, Joes because your asses belong to me! Now start running!"

With that the Joes started running and Priss remarking to Cover Girl and Firestorm if it was too late to desert.

A few hours later in his office, General Hawk was going over some paperwork; he was pleased that Joes were back in shape. There was a slight rapping against his door. "Come."

Entering in Air Force dress blues was Captain Aina Sahalin, code name Ghost Rider, a former Cobra Strato Viper who defected to the GI Joe team during the Apsalus Incident. "Captain Aina Sahalin reporting for duty, sir." She said handing Hawk her orders.

Skimming through her orders, he noticed she requested this assignment. "Forgive me, Captain this not personal, but you may be looked upon with some mistrust."

"I understand sir. I just want prove myself."

Hawk leaned back in his chair, so far she was being honest. "Why did you choose to defect?"

"My reason for defecting was my brother developed the Apsalus to eliminate Cobra Commander and the rest of the senior staff. Also I couldn't have the thought of that Mobile Armor being used on civilian targets on my consciences. My friend and mentor Norris Packard supported my decision to defect."

"Norris Packard was a Strato Viper, right?"

"Yes sir, he was my senior ever since I joined Cobra's Air Corp. One of the more decent members of Cobra."

On of the hardest stereotype to break was people who join Cobra were not for power or greed; Aina motives were just to look for a place to belong and believed in the ideals of Cobra.

In the conference room, Mindbender convened another meeting. "For our efforts to create our new leader we this person," Mindbender showed a picture of a tall, slim, exotic woman, who was half Japanese and half Indian with an English accent. "her name is Doctor Naomi Hunter, one of the leading experts in genetics. I want to use the Dreadnoks."

"The Dreadnoks," Destro sneered, "Mindbender, this task requires the utmost delicacy and the Dreadnoks don't specialize in delicate matters."

"Yes, Destro normally I would agree, but Zartan did recommend two people he knows for such matters."

Destro wanted to see it to believe it. Since the Dreadnoks were loud, disgusting and stupid. They had no sense of discretion or subtly.

Back at GI Joe Headquarters, the team was being put through hell as Sgt. Slaughter continued to whip the outfit into shape. "Come you maggots, I want you kiss that dirt," he bellowed during push-ups, "Cypher, I don't want your ass sticking up like the tail section of a 747!" The Sgt. noticed Cypher's poor push up position. Looking from the corner of his eye, Slaughter saw Wolf laughing at his comment. "Just keep laughing Wolf, you're going be doing push ups until I get tired!"

Settling down on a bench, Priss poured water from her water bottle down her throat almost as if she was dying of thirst. From head to toe, Priss was covered in sweat. Sitting next to her was equally tired and sweat soaked Lt. Stingray. "How are you holding up, Lt.?"

"I hadn't been this tired since my Ranger training, there I had to train with very little rest or sleep. But I'm managing."

Next, in full pack, the Joe team had to run a mile cross country in the rain. "Come on! Get the lead out! Pick up your aching feet and move! Move! Move!" he ordered

"We got to remember how to win! Grit your teeth and dig on in!" Roadblock stated as a morale booster.

"Yo Joe!"

"Let's go!"

"Yo Joe!"

"Better, not perfect, but better."