Queen's Notes: This chapter was co-written with In The Light, most of the chapters in this story are.
To the fans of Light out there, I do not know where she is, I love and miss her too but she has only sent me one email about 'taking a break' from the internet, fan fiction and rping. I do not know when or if she is coming back.
Baring that in mind this is still my story as much as hers and in honestly I got tired of waiting so I'm posting this story up. I hope you enjoy the story as much as we did when we wrote this.
Fire From The Past
Waking up to coldness was never very fun, more so when you are a Matoran of Fire who knew he had gone to sleep in his waaaarm hut, not the freezing cold snow drift he was currently in.
With a jerk, the Ta-Matoran pulled his head out of the snow and gasped at the freezing air entering his lungs, making him shiver quickly. His orb-like eyes blinked in confusion, not remembering this much snow back home. Of course he had never ventured far enough to see the Ko-Wahi area of the island. One word invaded his mind as he looked around, Huh?
...that and: COLD!
A somewhat sprawling landscape was partly covered in white snow around where the Matoran was, making it brighter than normal and what the male was used to so he closed his inner lids protectively over his eyes. It looked more like he was in the lue of two dunes, or drifts of snow, a patch of gray pebbles and dirt was to the Matoran's right. Some little purple flower stubbornly trying to bloom in that only clear spot, as was the way of life for the tundra plants.
Above the sky was a deep, rich color of blue, like a Toa of water's armor, but there was something else that was very noticeable; or rather a few some-things actually. The first was that there was only one sun burning bright up there. There was also the clear, unmistakable form of a planet taking up residents in part of the sky. That brown and tan planet had scars of black on it's surface as well as painted streaks of clouds. Half behind the planet was a green moon, one with an atmosphere and clouds of its own as well to support the greenery life that gave it its colors.
The poor red-armored Matoran moaned at both the bitter cold and the sights above as he pushed himself up and hugged himself, trying to reabsorb his own body heat. Lhikan's gaze scanned around the place he was in as much as he could, unable to fully as most of concentration was on the cold, before taking a few cautious steps forward. Moving should help make more heat, and he had never known a better time to need more heat than now.
"Where... where am I?" He frowned. "Is this some kind of joke? Not very funny..."
His movement startled small, white and light gray bird-Rahi gave little cries and a flock of about ten darted into the sky away from the Matoran.
Lhikan watched them fly up with a soft whir as he tipped his head, still trying to figure out why there was only one sun up there. Shaking harder, he pressed onward, silently wondering if someone up there really hated him right now.
A sharp crack of metal on stone was heard, echoing over the snow and ground, sounding louder than it should. Another crack came and a few more in a steady rhythm. The sound drew attention from more than justthe Matoran, a pale form shifted higher up the sloping landscape from where Lhikan was.
The Ta-Matoran tensed, eyes widening as he eyed where the sound was coming from. Oh Mata Nui, now what? Lhikan almost reached back, but remembered that he did not go to sleep with his blade. So he had nothing to defend himself with, "Ermm... hello?"
The ground shifted ahead, before there was another, much louder crack that sent the snow shifting and the grown under the Matoran gave way, sending him down a sudden slant/slide that would took him down hill and almost right into the broad head shield of...something big.
Giving a startled yelp, the Matoran shifted and rolled away to get a better look at what the 'something' was, heartlight flashing hard in the Bionicle tri-pulse. What he saw was... strange... yet he had a bad feeling all the same. It looked like some kind of giant bug, but more rounder. Quite frankly he didn't know what it was.
The creature stepped back growing as it focused on the comparatively small Matoran. Long claws flexed under shield like disks. Just as large tusks were bared as the Bohrok extended his long neck, tensed and bracing his body.
"Oh... not good..." Lhikan murmured, backing up quickly. He scrambled up to his feet, eyes on the Bohrok as he kept backing up, nearly tripping on a rock sticking up through the snow.
"Hit da' deck!" A female voice commanded from above and behind, the warning coming before the Bohrok lunged, trying to hit the Ta-Matoran with its shield like head. Lhikan threw himself out of the way just in time, landing hard in the cold ground. The Ta-Matoran, landing with his mask only half in the ground, was able to see a little bit of what happened next.
Something big, but slender and bipedal shaped, Matoran shaped but... much bigger. It was pale with white armor and light grey undertones, this person went straight for the Bohrok, slamming into the broad head to push it away from the Ta-Matoran. Said Matoran blinked as he rolled over and to his feet. He had no recall of such beings, both of them, but at least he knew the 'Tall Matoran' was on his side.
The white being back up, leaping away from another lunge from the Bohrok before landing almost on the Matoran, "Climb up, on my back!" the female voice said, and Lhikan was looking up not only into colored eyes, one blue shaded and the other red, but a blue Kanohi Rau. A mask of translation.
Lhikan wasted no time in scrambling up and onto the white being's back. He looked past her and at the Bohrok. "What is that thing?" he half yelled.
"Rouge Bohrok," The 'tall Matoran' said, Lhikan would find even as she moved away from it that her armor, the way it was made, had ridges that were made for Matoran hands and feet to hang onto and brace against.
Well that was... convenient.
"A Bo-rock?" Lhikan replied, testing the new word on his mouth. "Is it some kind of Rahi?"
"In a way, better have a good grip," The Rau warring being grinned over her shoulder at the Ta-Matoran as she reached behind her; not to reach for him but a quick dip into subspace and had two shields on either forearms. Backing away from the advancing, hissing creature, the combat shields suddenly extended three times its length, squeezing another trigger had the claws on the shield snapping out as well.
Forgetting for a moment about the cold, Lhikan watched as the being's weapon came out and into view. Back on his island, there weren't that many Toa, but whenever a new one would stop by Lhikan always found himself in awe over that being's different weapon. But, this being didn't seem big enough to be a Toa. More like half the size, over twice as big as Lhikan though and standing up right she'd be more than likely be about 11, 12 feet max. But at the moment the Tao-like person was diving to the side out of the way of the Bohrok's biting tusks.
Then... the temperature dropped as elemental energy coursed openly through this Rua warier. Lhikan gasped in return from the cold mostly as he held on tighter. He was starting to really not like the cold all that much. The being had to use her shields to block a blow, being forced through the snow and dirt a few paces, but launched forward herself as the Bohrok drew back. Driving the claws of her combat shields into joints and 'pushed' the elemental energy out through the shields, freezing the creature mid-rawr.
"...Well, dat was quicker than I thought it'd be!"
The Matoran was panting slightly, still clinging to his strange rescuer. The ridges of his gold Hau furrowed. "How did you do that? Are you a... Toa?"
"Kora," The being corrected as she climbed up the Bohrok, digging her extended claws into the head to pop off the shield like covering and spear the fleshy mask like thing inside with the combat shield, "A lesser Toa." She added scowling at the thing before freezing and breaking it. Hopping down the Kora paced away from the now shell and knelt down so Lhikan could get off again.
"Kora," Lhikan repeated the new word before hopping off her back and facing her. "Strange, I haven't heard of a 'lesser Toa.' Th-Thank you for helping me, Kora...?"
"Tala," The Kora said chuckling, as she turned the little bit to be fully facing the Matoran, still kneeling down with one arm over her bent knee to stay at Matoran level. Tala let her combat shields to snap back into their compacted state to be less threatening, "The Kora Nata o' ice."
"Thank you Kora Tala," the Matoran said. "Um, could you maybe tell me where I am? The last thing I remember is going to sleep in my hut..." Oh, he wanted his warm hut right now.
"Ya're in Ko-Wahi, a bit o' a ways away from Ta-Koro little firespitter." Tala said frowning a little, hocking her shields on her back, the Kora reached out to pull Lhikan closer and run her and up and down his arms and sides, drawing out the cold from his frame.
The much smaller Matoran's shivering dropped, though there was still an uncomfortable chill. "I don't understand... Ko-Wahi's supposed to be closer to Onu-Wahi," he mumbled, confused. "This is Miko Nui, isn't it?"
Tala was quite for a moment, tilting her Kanohi slightly but started to frown, "Ta-Matoran, dis is the island o' Mata Naui, on Aqua Magna."
"WHAT!" Lhikan jolted backward, "Island of Mata Nui? But... no, this can't be real. It's a trick, right?"
"Ya' think a Toa would trick you?" Taka arched up an eye ridge with a semi amused, semi droll look on her Kanohi.
True... and Lhikan had never heard about 'Kora' before. Yet Kora Tala has said that she was still a Toa, lesser or not that was still a Toa and the living elementals were to be trusted.
"Th-then... how did I get here?" Lhikan felt his Kanohi Hau as he said this and glanced around.
"Well, we should find dat out." Tala said with a reassuring purr, "What's ya name little one?"
"It's Lhikan," he answered, as he realized his mask had been knocked slightly ajar in the scramble with the bug-monster-Rahi, thus why it felt strange before the Ta-Matoran adjusted it back into place.
Tala reached out to pat the top of his head, chuckling, "Hop on than Lhikan, we're closer to Le-Koro than Ko-Koro."
He nodded, not knowing what else to do in his situation. "Does this island have Toa, Tala?" the smaller male asked while climbing up onto her back again, "Other Toa?"
"Well, my sisters an' brothers are, both of Nata and Nuva." Tala chuckled, waiting for the Matoran to settle, though she had to unhooked one shield with the other being partly over Lhikan for safety.
Lhikan settled as he thought the names Nata and Nuva over, pressing his back against the remaining shield to test it for movement, "I've never heard of those..." He shivered and pressing back against the Kora next to see of the ice elemental could draw the cold out again. "H-how long is it going to be until we reach Le-Koro?" The sooner he got out of the cold, the better.
"Maybe a day," Tala said as she extending the loose shield, except for the claws. Dropping the shield the Kora stepped on to it, "Shorter if we go down inta' the Onu-Wahi tunnels. But I like staying above ground personally."
"Whatever you think is best, Kora Tala," the Matoran replied, Lhikan had no clue where he was anyway.
The Kora shifted on her shield, it was not a snowboard and with a kick off the ridewas riding surprisingly smoothly down the rest of the mountain. "Did anything strange happen before ya' went to sleep Lhikan?" Tala asked.
The Matoran hummed in thought, "...all I can really remember is feeling very tired," he offered as they went.
"Any bad dreams lately?" Tala asked, glancing over her shoulder before returning her attention to where she was boarding. Since the Ta-Matoran didn't seem like the kind to enjoy a rush, she wasn't going very fast by Matoran terms.
"If being late to see a Fire Toa dropping by counts," he said with a smirk. "I probably won't be seeing Toa Dume anytime soon, now that I'm... here."
"Tahu is our Toa o' fire here," Tala said, filing away the name 'Duma' to ask Kopaka, or the next Turaga who that was. "But I don't think you had the Makuta sickness. So it may not have been a gateway dat brought ya here..."
Knowing there was a Toa of Fire made Lhikan happy, though he did wonder what Tala meant by a Makuta sickness. He shifted slightly, "A Makuta sickness? And what do you mean... this 'gateway'?"
"Gateways between worlds," Tala explained, as she stood on her shield/board as they guided off snow and onto dirt. When Lhikan glanced back he could see a snow trail as the guardian spirit used her elemental energy to keep the ride smooth. "Kora, or at least my team, are charged with findin' an' sealin' rouge gateways dat pop up. Think... out o' control teleports."
"But I don't understand what you mean about a Makuta sickness. Why would the Makuta give a Matoran a sickness? Is this something new?" Lhikan asked, taking in the scenery as they went by while still clinging to Tala.
"Err..." Tala hesitated a moment, wondering just where Lhikan was from, "Why don't ya ask one of the Turaga hm? They can explain better than I can, Turaga Matau should be back in Le-Koro now." She stepped off her shield, one stomp had it flipping up so she could catch it and let the thing fold up to rest on her forearm. Trees were starting around them now, and more grass as well as colored flowers now that they were much farther down the mountain.
Lhikan hummed again, half way to being happy again now that they were starting to leave the bitter cold, "I'll do that, Tala. It would be nice to get some answers."
"Yes it would, I never heard of that island even in the stories at the Kini." The Kora said thoughtfully as she continued on, keeping up a jogging pace and using her longer pace to an advantage. The landscape increasing in temperature and greening the farther down mountain they were on. Oddly she didn't seem hindered by carrying the Ta-Matoran and even started to go into a slow run once the ground was firmer.
"I find it strange that the Toa I've seen and know never mention Kora," Lhikan said, liking it when there was a conversation going on. Made him more calm as to the fact that something just wasn't right if he wasn't on his home island. "Where do you come from?"
"Mata Nui made me," Tala said with a slightly sad smile, "I don't really know where I'm from originally, but I was stationed on da' human world with a few other Kora teams an' da Toa Hanu." The Kora opened her arms and motioned around them, "Then, my team an' I were called here."
"...Human world?" Lhikan frowned in thought. "There are other places... beyond?"
"Beyond what?" Tala glanced over her shoulder but shifted and reached back, getting Lhikan up higher on her back and then stopping to point up, "Look up, dar's Bara an Bota Magna. Both, like our Magna, are able to hold life an air. Beyond our solar system are many, many other Magnas, but only a few can support life. Such as da human world. Mata Nui, for whatever reason wanted a way back to those life supporting magnas he found."
"Beyond the barriers... I've heard Toa speak of them," Lhikan said mostly to himself in confusion. The last thing he had known, was that some Toa would trek on a journey and meet a wall-like barrier with no way through in some places. Now Tala was talking about solar systems and other magnas... in the sky? Maybe this Turaga she spoke of would be able to help him understand more.
"Don't crisp ya' mind firespitter," Tala laughed, reaching back to rub the top of the Matoran's head, careful of her caws though so not to catch on his Kanohi. Despite her words and the saying, there was no hint of bite in them what so ever, "And look, dar's the edge of the plato to Le-Wahi!"
Straightening after smiling at the playful contact, Lhikan craned his head to peer ahead at Le-Wahi, which could be described as a massive jungle of greens, "Any Kora in Le-Koro?"
"One, Lee." Tala chuckled, grinning, "And yes dat's her name. The Toa of air here is named Lewa." She walked through the undergrowth of broad leaf ferns, but it wasn't until she was suddenly standing at the edge of an abrupt cliff that she stopped. Beyond the sear scale of the Le-Wahi jungle was shown, the massive trees that could and did rival the heights of towers in the Metru Nui.
"Ohhh," the Matoran on the Kora's back breathed at the sight, "So tall. I bet they could be as tall as the towers in Metru Nui. Toa Dume's supposed to be from there I think..." He tipped his mask as he thought to himself. Why hadn't this island 'Mata Nui' ever been spoken about before?
Tala hummed at the names 'Duma' and 'Metru Nui' as she reached back to take her other shield. The claws on both popping out as she compressed the triggers, "Got a good grip Lhikan?"
Lhikan tipped his head. "Well, yes I think so..." He took another look at the cliff, feeling suspicious. "Whhhyyyy?"
Instead of answering Tala took a step back and then launched forward... off the cliff!
The Ta-Matoran gave a scream and clutched at Tala in a death-grip. Strange how in many years he would be diving off bridges at tremendous heights... but rght now, he wasn't a true fan of intentionally falling off a cliff!
The Kora he was hanging onto (latched onto right now) laughed, her body relaxed as she embraced the free fall for a few wonderful, adrenalin filled moments. Free falling wasn't new to her, and shifting she managed to use her shields to swing closer to one of the great trees. Digging her claws in partly to slow down, but still keeping momentum Tala let go, using one shield as a broad again going down a broken branch, though going almost as fast she wasn't in free fall anymore. Lhikan grunted to himself, wondering if he might be sick, his body pretty much plastered against the Kora's back as he waited for them to reach ground again... if they ever did.
The ice elemental slowed, jumping from the broken branch half way down. To another more stable branch and trotted along to the base of the branch to the trunk, "You okay Lhikan?" Tala asked as she knelt down, looking over her shoulder.
"Mmm," he hummed before nodding. "Yeah... I'll live." he smirked letting out a 'whew!' as Lhikan let go to fall onto his aft on the tree branch with another grunt.
"Here," Tala took out a gored from subspace and offered it to the Matoran. Inside was a semi sweet drink, "Not bad for ya' first jump." From that first initial scream it had to have been Lhikan's first true free fall.
"Thanks," he replied taking the offered drink. The Ta-Matroan sipped for a moment before asking, "What is this?"
"Water an' kiki barriers." Tala said as she paced around the Matoran eyeing everything from the skies to the assorted plants and things that were growing on the branches of the tree itself. She stooped to pull up an odd plant and split off a Matoran arm length of one of the white roots. She put the plant back and broke up the root as the Kora dropped down to sit by Lhikan, munching on part of the root. "Po-Koro makes dat."
The Ta-Matoran gazed about at the view, happy to enjoy it without free falling straight into it. Lhikan had certainly never expected to take such a trip on waking up in this land, he glanced at Tala. "A day's journey, did you say? Till we reach Le-Koro?"
She nodded, offering one of the white rook bits to the Matoran, "We should be there in time for da evenin' meal an' dance."
"That's good," the Lhikan took the offered piece, his arm joint making a soft whir as he did so.