Chapter 26: All Together Now
So it's been a while for this story…yeah I'm not even going to try and say sorry since there really isn't much I can say other than that I decided to do another story. I've been updating but not just this story, which is what pretty much everyone who follows me cares about. So sorry about that but I've wanted to the other story even longer than this one, not that I'm going to completely forget about this one.
Well, when I checked the stats for this story a few days ago and saw that it had long broken 10,000 views and now has 11,000+ I realized that at the very least I had to get a chapter out around New Years. Plus breaking 125 reviews is amazing, though really I didn't expect much past 100 when I started this story.
So I'm just going to cut to the chase this time. After months of waiting, here's chapter 26.
It took several moments for Subaru to register that he was falling. His head was spinning (or maybe that was just him falling?) and a fading pain in his arm had done a good job of distracting him. But eventually he noticed that was moving, brown eyes snapping open and blinking in confusion as he saw the sky.
"Pay attention kid!" War-Rock suddenly shouted, jerking the arm he was attached downward with enough force to roll Subaru.
When he tumbled through the air, Subaru caught sight of the ground closing in, only having just enough time to brace himself before he smacked into the concrete. Stunned by the fall, Subaru didn't register that War-Rock was yelling at him for a few moments.
"-thinking? All you've done is hurt yourself like an idiot! Are you even listening?" War-Rock asked angrily when he noticed Subaru's slightly dazed look.
"Yeah, I'm listening," It was nearly impossible to not listen considering War-Rock felt the need to be as close as he could in order to emphasize his words even more, "But…what happened?"
All he really remembered from the past few moments was that Gemini Spark has somehow active Wolf Forest's Overdrive. Then the power-crazed FM had attacked him, diving forward and looking like he was going to literally rip his throat out with his teeth…
Subaru shuddered. He could safely say that Wolf Forest's overdrive was far more terrifying that Ox Fire's, however briefly he'd seen it.
But that was beside the point. After that, all he remembered was a moment of sheer panic that blotted out all thoughts. Something must have happened, or else…well more than his arm would be hurting right now.
"You panicked, that's what happened!" War-Rock snapped in annoyance. Seeing Subaru's blank face staring back up at him, the FM sighed, "Wolf Forest was coming for you, you panicked and shot him in the face at point-blank range. The force sent you flying back and you probably just hurt yourself more than Wolf Forest! What were you thinking!?"
Subaru pushed himself up with his free arm, taking a brief moment to put together everything that happened so it made some bits of sense. Looking around, Subaru saw that he'd nearly flattened a Satellite Police officer's car and he'd landed in some kind of barricade of the front door. The officer of the car looked like he wanted to shoot the boy in front of him out of reflex. War-Rock glared at the man angrily, refusing to break the improv staring contest.
Subaru's attention was suddenly forced away when the already damaged top window of the mall suddenly exploded again. In the midst of the rain of deadly glass was Tamotsu having been pushed backwards as Wolf Forest's claws attempted to reach past the whirling Shield Boomerang blocking his path.
Wolf Forest's claws continued to scrape against the buzz-saw-like shield noisily, the ridiculously long claws refusing to be dulled or chipped. Tamotsu narrowed his eyes as Zero re-laid his plan, gritting his teeth as he drew his arms back until how own shield was in danger of cutting him.
With one powerful thrust forward, Tamotsu pushed himself back and away from Wolf Forest, landing smoothly on a Wave Road. Wolf Forest growled angrily as he was separated from his target, crouching down on all fours as he landed on his own Wave Road.
Subaru grimaced as he saw the full effects of Wolf Forest's Overdrive for the first time. His armor had been pretty much repaired; even the chunk that had been missing in the back had respawned itself save a few scratches. Absolutely no signs of exhaustion showed anymore, if anything he seemed to have more energy than ever.
"Wolf's Overdrive continues on until he either exhausts himself or is killed. In this state he could even give King Cepheus' personal generals a challenge!" Gemini White called.
Subaru looked up and glared at the FM, the twins having situated themselves on the highest Wave Road in the immediate area. At the very edge of his vision Subaru saw Misora looking out from her vantage point in the frame of the broken window. Tamotsu didn't bother looking at the FM since he was far more interested in the rabid metal wolf that looked ready to pounce at a moment's notice.
Wolf Forest let out a roar before charging at Tamotsu, claws reflecting the sunlight as the slashed downwards. The blond swore as he snapped to the side quickly, abandoning the Wave Road and falling to the ground. Wolf Forest made a move to follow, only to have his attention suddenly drawn as a blast of electric blue energy hit him.
Tamotsu landed on top of a police car, the roof not caving in this time despite the groan of protest it let out. People had decided to scatter the moment things began to suddenly heat up, though whether the actually fled or if they simple hid was up in the air. Most of the Satellite Police officers had decided to personally escort the more…courageous onlookers whose perception of the danger was severally lacking.
"This is bad, Wolf is now faster, stronger and hasn't given up any of his defense," Zero said, allowing the other two pairs to listen in.
"I noticed!" Misora shouted over the com as she ducked under the blast of energy Wolf Forest had sent at her. The ends of her snowy scarf were caught in the energy, ripping and fraying the once smooth edge.
Subaru didn't idle any longer and quickly pushed off the ground, phasing through a Wave Road before changing his state quick enough so he was able to land on a different one. The Tidal Edge finished forming the moment the brunet's feet touched the energy, blue energy swirling energy ready to slice and rip.
With a yell Subaru pushed off the pathway, swinging the blade as hard as he could at Wolf Forest's less protected side. The Tidal Edge whistled as it cut through the air in a perfect arc, seeming to glow eve brighter as it neared.
Subaru suddenly felt his arm jerked downwards, the force causing him to smack his face into the Wave Road. When he looked up the brunet gasped as he saw that Wolf Forest had turned impossible quick, catching the Tidal Edge between his claws before slamming his arm downwards, his claws embed clean though the Wave-Road.
War-Rock began shouting at Subaru to move away, but the brunet was stuck. Without a second thought Subaru willed the Tidal Edge to dissipate back into a useless card. A moment later the brunet slipped away from Wolf Forest a moment before claws crashed into the golden light like a guillotine.
With a deafening shatter, part of the Wave Road exploded outwards, pieces flying through the air before they flickered and faded away. Wolf Forest ignored the destruction completely, instead choosing to eye Subaru across from the gap.
"He damaged a Wave Road so easily?!" Subaru gaped at the hole where he'd been moments before. The only thing that'd he'd seen do something like that was a blast of energy that overloaded the road's own energy, not a purely physical attack.
"My, my, it seems that Overdrive increased Wolf's power even more that I'd anticipated. And it wasn't as if my expectations were low in the first place," Gemini White commented idly and reminding everyone that he was still there.
"Why the hell are you still here!?" War-Rock roared angrily, "Get down here and fight like a man, damn it!"
Wolf Forest took War-Rock's angry yelling as a challenge, declaring his own and jumping over the gap with a single push from his legs. Subaru blanched at the sight of the red wolf leaping at him, throwing pride to the wind and running away.
"Yes, because you most certainly need two more opponents when you can barely handle one," Gemini White pointed out, though he made no move to jump into the fray.
Tamotsu narrowed his eyes at the twins, trying to see if it was safe to turn his back on the two. The last thing that they needed was for either FM to come over and literally stab someone in the back while they were distracted by Wolf Forest. Gemini Black looked board out of his mind, absently watching as Wolf Forest chased Subaru around. Gemini White attempted to look back at the blond innocently, though the odd glint in his eyes ruined the image.
"We should help them," Zero pointed out as soon as Gemini White opened his mouth, not wanting to hear what the FM had to say.
"You know what you'll have to do, Zer-"
The FM in question turned around, intent on taking his frustration out on whomever it was. Several colorful threats where already half out of his mouth by the time he finished turned around, "The hell do you…!?"
"Tag in!" Subaru shouted as he shot past Gemini Black without slowing down, Misora a mere moment behind him.
"…want?" he finished lamely, looking after the two in confusion. They had both dropped to a roof at the soonest opportunity possible, slowing down and casting glances at him.
He looked back around just in time to realize that a very angry Wolf Forest was heading straight for him.
"Oh hell no!" There wasn't time for any more angry shouting and Gemini Black was forced to zip down the Wave Road as fast as he could in order to avoid the slashing claws and piercing fangs, cursing and swearing the whole time.
"How'd you know that'd work?" Misora asked, watching as Gemini Black punched Wolf Forest in the face. The attack didn't seem to even register to the FM and he nearly cleaved Gemini Black in two.
"Uh, it just kinda came to me since Wolf Forest is just attacking whoever happens to be in his way…" An angry shout and suddenly a Heat Ball of some caliber went off.
"So you just put someone else in front of him and he locks onto them instead!" Misora finished with a smile of understanding. "That's a great idea, now we can take a breathier and think of something while they wear each other out."
"Uh yeah…" Subaru answered awkwardly, feeling a tad uncomfortable for whatever reason.
Gemini White narrowed his eyes at the two below him. So they were smarter than he'd thought and had pieced together the fatal flaw in most any Overdrive and how to use it to their advantage far quicker than he'd expected. But that didn't mean…
Two blades clashed together in a shower of sparks and energy, Gemini White giving an angry looking Tamotsu a slightly amused look. Icy blue eyes glared at him, though their actual pigment was nearly impossible to see through the green and yellow tint.
"Did you tell them that, Zero?" The FM asked with a knowing smirk.
"No, despite what you think they are smart enough to figure something basic like that out," Zero replied coldly.
Tamotsu didn't bother to say anything, channeling his frustration into shoving Gemini White back as forcefully as possible. The white-clad FM was forced back a step but still didn't have to much trouble blocking the return strike. Another flash of blades and Tamotsu was retreating a few steps and hissing out a swear, a thin but long scar marring his chest armor.
"Yes, I guess even idiots can figure out something simple like that, especially if they're given some guidance, right?"
Tamotsu gave the FM an odd look, instantly on guard from the smile and false pleasantries in his voice. Gemini White held the blond's gaze for another moment before abruptly dropping through Wave Road.
Tamotsu was confused, looking down after Gemini White and watching as the FM landed on a road below, "….Ok…What-?"
"Zero Blade, you nee-" Harp's voice was abruptly heard over the coms, causing the blond to snap to attention at her worried voice.
"-haul ss!" War-Rock interrupted, but the warning was practically drowned out by the growling-roar he heard suddenly.
Tamotsu, against common sense, whirling around to see what he already knew was there. Half-way through his turn a black shape collided harshly with him and nearly knocked him over. With a harsh shove Gemini Black pushed the blond between him and the very angry wolf.
And then he was gone.
Tamotsu was already moving to do the same, but it wasn't needed. A pink blur crashed into him, shoving the blond off the road quicker than he could've hoped to do on his own. Wolf Forest let out and angry growl at seeing his newest target fleeing with an old one, but Subaru was there a second later, darting across Wolf Forest's vision just long enough for the FM to redirect his attention.
"Are you ok?" Misora asked, earning a nod from Tamotsu, though the blond was already looking back at the Gemini twins.
"Come on," Gemini White said as his darker twin landed next to him on the pavement below, muttering a string of curses and swears. A few Satellite Police officers and random bystanders cringed at his appearance (some of the officers had the gall to raise their guns at them, but it wasn't like they meant much) but were ignored. "We're leaving."
Gemini Black stopped his own swearing, giving his twin an annoyed look, "But you said-"
"And you'll just be used as a distraction again so be quiet," Gemini White said sharply, Gemini Black unwillingly silencing.
Gemini Black pouted angrily, but wasn't overly disappointed. He wasn't allowed to fight and vent the feelings that were close to bursting already, so what was the point? Sure it was funny to see the trio chased about in a demented game of cat and mouse, but that didn't make him that much happier.
Gemini White cast a side-long glace at one particularly brave officer below him who had stood up and moved so he was in front of a woman who seemed to be having a panic attack next to his car. It was pointless since he didn't care about them and the man's bravery was just an annoying front if his shaking was any indicator, "Now come on, we have-"
"Death from above~!"
Gemini Black was left standing there staring dumbfounded at the empty place where his twin had once been; whisked away by a sudden blur of navy and red.
"Well this sucks!" War-Rock roared as Subaru tried to recover from where he had been flung forcefully into a wall.
The fight was at a stand-still now, neither side was gaining ground but neither side was truly losing or even taking real damage. Injuries were light and easy to heal with even the remaining low-tier Recovery cards. But Wolf Forest's energy seemed limitless and their energy was drained into inflicting even the smallest scratches that meant little.
Misora spun out of the way of another massive claw slash, damaged scarf trailing behind her. Wolf Forest's claws caught the trailing white tail, digging through the material and hooking his claws into it. A sharp yank and Misora felt the scarf being pulled off of her neck with no resistance, the blonde extremely thankful that the wrappings were loose. Wolf Forest glared at the empty scarf like it had personally wronged him before trying to get the thing off where it was impaled on his claws.
Misora grimaced, not just at the sight of Wolf Forest effectively shredding her scarf as he tried to get it off his claws, but at the fresh cut on her arm. It was shallow and not serious, a mere scratch by any standards. Yet, had her luck been anything less it could have been much worse, the slight sting making sure she didn't forget.
It wasn't even worth wasting a Recovery card on, a small sacrifice of energy and the wound was closed, suit knitting itself back together and hiding even the few drops of blood that had squeezed their way out in the few moments the cut had been present.
Harp was saying something, but Misora didn't pay too much attention. Instead she watched in frozen horror as Wolf Forest charged at the recovering Subaru, the brunet not making any attempt to move. Even as the wall of metal approached at a breakneck pace, Subaru didn't move, steeling himself.
At the very last second, Subaru suddenly ducked and dove straight between Wolf Forest's legs, rolling clumsily between the thundering feet and almost getting stepped up. Wolf Forest didn't seem to be able to comprehend what his target had just done fast enough and ended up running strait into, and through, the wall that had been behind the brunet.
"…I'm not doing that again," Subaru muttered. It had seemed like a good idea and it had worked through sheer dumb luck but wasn't worth trying again.
"Well we've accomplished a grand total of nothing!" War-Rock shouted angrily as Wolf Forest pulled himself out of the wreckage. "Where did Zero Blade even go; did he run away or something?"
As if in flat out defiance of War-Rock's words Tamotsu suddenly came streaking down from above, the Triple Rod pointed out beneath him so all his momentum and weight pulled into the strike.
It probably would've been devastating if Wolf Forest hadn't decided to counter.
Seeing the charge, Wolf Forest's own predator instincts roared to life and refused to stay silent at such a blunt charge. A push of his powerful legs and Wolf Forest was flying up to meet the attack head-on, lashing out with one clawed hand. The massive claws cut clean through the Triple Rod and the thing shattering the moment the energy flow was disrupted.
The backlash was at least enough to knock Tamotsu's momentum enough to the side that he didn't fall directly into the literal jaws of the beast. Copying what he'd seen Misora do earlier the blond managed to push off Wolf Forest's own bulky body and gain just enough distance so one hand was able to grab a Wave Road
"Well, that could've gone better…" Tamotsu muttered as he hefted himself up onto the pathway of light. Below he could see that Wolf Forest was a bit confused; all his possible targets had suddenly disappeared from his immediate field of vision.
"Weren't you watching Gemini?" Subaru asked.
"Gemini Spark is…busy right now."
Harp asked the obvious question, "Both of them? How?"
"Axl Trigger is not a good fighter," Surprisingly Zero answered and even he sounded a bit amused, "But he is good at draw attention to himself."
"He's insane." Tamotsu translated with a snort.
"So, anyone have any ideas?" Misora's voice asked over the coms as she peered at the enraged FM from inside a building.
War-Rock gave an unhelpful 'Nope', though it was drowned out by Subaru talking over him.
"Hey, Zero Blade?"
"Can't your weapon cut through Wolf Forest's armor like you did with Ox Fire's? Actually saw it off so he can't just repair it?"
Zero cut in before Tamotsu had time to even think about it; "It can eventually cut through practically any solid material by eroding it away steadily, but it needs just that; time. Before, we stuck one of the Recoil Rods to where it couldn't be removed, but there isn't a place like that on Wolf that can so easily be reached and us remain in one piece."
"So...that's a no?" Subaru asked, wincing as he saw Wolf Forest take his rage out on a random car. Why FMs seemed to hate cars so much was beyond him.
"How long can this Overdrive stuff even last? Can't we just wait it out?" Misora asked in frustration, mentally trying to map where any remaining people (idiots) were and if they were in danger or not.
"It is a relentless driving force far more powerful than Ox's. He can eventually exhaust himself without any conflict, but not before he has nearly leveled this entire area and killed anything that moves," Zero said somewhat distantly, watching Wolf Forest intently, "We have little choice but to fight him in order to exhaust him quicker."
"I hate fighting like this…" War-Rock growled lowly, Subaru nodding in silent agreement before the two leapt out to confront the beast again.
There was a blur of rushed movement, just enough time to realize that he'd been attacked but not enough time to actually do something about the attacker, and then he was hitting the ground, a heavy weight that was most likely a human using him as a cushion.
Gemini White was livid.
The second he register that he had hit ground, or at least something close enough, he was already moving again.
It was easy to push himself off the ground, and quickly leap to his feet. But Gemini White was shocked when an unexpected weight clung to him persistently, nearly pulling him backwards and to the ground again.
Not only that, but the person had wrapped an arm around his right arm, pinning the appendage to his side. With a growl the FM turned his head around as far as he could, trying to see who clung to him.
Hiroki grinned up at Gemini White from his awkward position, eyes alight with mischief, "'Sup?"
Gemini White glared back but made no move to change his current position. The child clinging to him was far too over-confident, thinking he had everything under control with such a hasty and sloppy plan, "So you're the fourth human that Libra encountered? What other FM life form was willing to go against their king I wonder?"
"None ya," Hiroki said, not intimidated by the belittling look he was getting.
"None ya business!"
"You're an…interesting one, aren't you? Well, let me tell you something…" Gemini White trailed off as he realized that his left arm refused to move more than a few inches. Looking over at the appendage, Gemini White experienced a rare moment of not knowing how to react simply by the sheer absurdity of what he was seeing.
The orange haired boy had somehow managed to wrap his free arm and leg around his mechanical arm, using the grip he had with his other arm and leg to keep the arm in place. The arm lacked any physical sensation input from anywhere but the connecting joint, preventing Gemini White from realizing that both his arms had been pinned and that the boy was in far more control that he'd originally suspected.
Suddenly the hand that had been pinning his other arm disappeared and the body that was still clinging to him shifting. Without thinking, Gemini White tore his gaze from where he'd been unknowingly staring and looked over his shoulder.
The barrel of a pistol stared back at him.
Gemini Black stared back at the scene, watching as his twin was bear-hugged and then successively shot in the face, point-blank. He saw it, and knew it happened, but it was just taking a moment to process.
Hiroki ducked under the fist that literally came flying at him. The metal had just passed over his head before a crackling Elec Sword was trying to cut him down. Hiroki let out a yelp and fired a few weak shots at Gemini White, forcing the FM to redirect his attention and block the bolts. A simple slash ripped the weak bolts apart, leaving the white clad FM free of any obstacles.
Gemini White charged.
Hiroki backed up with a surprised shout, eyes widening as the blade just missed his face. Gemini White didn't waste a moment, taking a step forward and reversing his momentum in one smooth movement.
He was only slightly surprised when he ripped through nothing, the boy disappearing from sight in an instant.
With no way to know where the boy way Gemini White stopped any attempts to attack. Instead, he simple stood there, letting his arms rest casually by his side, even if he didn't dismiss the Elec Sword.
And he waited.
Several seconds went by and nothing happened.
A few more passed, the only sounds disrupting the silence being the occasional distant explosion or shout or what have you. A few Satellite Police officers had decided to stick around apparently, the braver ones peaking around from their cars to see why everything was quiet again. Gemini White ignored them and their muttering; however annoying they were, they meant little as long as they didn't interfere.
The sound of a step.
Gemini White whirled around, his sword spinning out and around, leaving a fading trail of rippling light until a disk surrounded him.
There was a yelp and the sound of something hitting the ground heavily.
And then there was a blade inches from his chest, Hiroki freezing and unintentionally dropping the invisibility. Swallowing thickly, Hiroki's eyes traced the path of the sword and up the golden arm until he was looking at annoyed red eyes.
"How did you even-?"
"Just because I can't see you doesn't mean I can't hear you," Gemini White said, letting the sword drift closer to the boy's neck until it was just above it, "You aren't very stealthy, so something like invisibility is wasted on you. But it is a rare ability, so, just who is your FM?"
Axl just managed to stifle his squeak at the question, Gemini White looking at the gun still clutched in Hiroki's hand with obvious knowing as to just what it was, "An interesting form to store his conscious point, it holds no indication of who he could be, nor does it bear a family crest like Libra said…"
Gemini White didn't get to say anything more because suddenly Satellite Police car rammed into him. Taken completely by surprised, Gemini White had no time to prepare himself as was flung away after his body cracking the reinforced windshield as he hit it.
Axl wasn't sure if this was good or bad but decided to continue to stay quiet.
The Police car screeched to a stop a few feet later, spinning just a bit from hitting Gemini White again. The door, however, was flung open before it had fully stopped, reviling a rather frazzled Detective Gorida.
"You alright kid?" Gorida asked, though it seemed like a stupid question. The kid, however strange, was easily stronger than him and could probably take out a good section of the police force without much effort.
And yet, all Gorida could see was a kid who was in trouble.
He didn't even seem 'special' like the others, who all were surprisingly serious when it was called for yet still at the very least somewhat childish under it all. Here, all he saw was a kid who'd probably been sucked into this through bland circumstances.
Hiroki quickly hopped to his feet and nodded, "Yeah, yeah, I'm fine. I can't believe you hit him with a car though!" there was no mistaking the childish glee at that.
"And you continue to get involved in things beyond your comprehension, Detective Gorida," Gemini White said, walking calmly around the car like he hadn't just been hit by a speeding block of reinforced steel. "Still trying to develop weapons I assume?"
"What the hell did you do with the Matter Wave converter?" Gorida asked. He didn't know what brought it up, but just seeing the twin of the FM who'd caused the no so random distraction reminded him.
"You mean that incomplete piece of technology that I took?" it was widely suspected and pretty much accepted, but there was a difference between speculation and solid proof, "You'll know when it's time."
"Time for what?" It was probably a stupid question; there was no way to actually force an answer.
"Again, you'll kno-"
Gemini White stopped talking when Hiroki suddenly materialized next to him; gun a few inches or so away from his cheek.
He shot Gemini White in the face.
In hindsight he should've been expecting it, considering how unpredictable the boy was. But the boy had been so quiet that he'd been easy to forget; it wasn't like Gemini White respected him enough to pay him attention. His abilities, while vast, were to divers and conflicting and spread so thin that his attacks meant little unless they were point-blank.
But most of all he wasn't expecting him to try anything; if he had any sense he'd be terrified since he'd almost effortlessly thwarted or withstood any real plan of attack the boy had tried. And that the boy had actually taken his own criticism to heart and managed to be so silent so quickly wasn't something that'd ever occurred to him. The FM stumbled back, a few scratchy, wavy and obviously foreign syllables falling from his lips that really didn't sound natural.
"Was I quiet enough that time?" Hiroki asked cockily.
"Yes, but-" Gemini Black suddenly tackled the orange haired boy, the two dark armored boy wrestling each other in an instant, "Well, that."
I am cutting this off here for the sole reason that after this I'm stuck on connecting the ending to this section. But looking at my story and seeing how popular it's gotten in the time I've been taking a break finally had me go 'screw it' and clean up this chapter
For anyone who was particularly worried I'll go ahead and say this. If I'm going to ever drop a story I'll at least post that I am somewhere. That way you're sure there's nothing coming and can stop waiting in vain.