In my beginning, there was silence, and darkness. The planet was still somewhat new within the Milky Way, and had had her very makeup catastrophically remade by her recent collision with another, smaller planet. That planet's metals were the materials from which I was born. All of this I was to learn later; now, there was only the darkness, and the comfort of being cocooned, and loved. Yes, I could feel how she loved me as a mother, without reservation: I was the first of her Zoid creations. I rested securely in her arms for a very long time.
The first sound I heard was the whisper of her name - Zi. And then other sounds came, creaks and rocky shifts from halfway around the world, as she adjusted and accepted the collided planet within herself, readying herself for the birthing pains of my brethren to come. I listened carefully, and with the glimmering, gossamer threads of these new sounds, earthen groans and "Zi, Zi," I wove my first song.
All the planet quieted to hear me. I sang and sang, to tell the rocks and waters and skies of Zi's story, of the suffering she had endured to allow all of us to be. I sang of her beginning and of my own, of her love for us and of ours for her. Zi spun through the stars in silence, listening to my tribute, deeply moved.
When my song had finally finished, many centuries had passed. Tiredness stole over me like a twilight, and I lay my head down at last. Zi wept cleansing rains in gratitude, filling channels and basins with nourishment. My feet and belly were so deeply rooted in her that I could not tell where one ended and the other began, and so I felt that rain seeping into the earth of my own valley. Her gentle tears lapped at my shoulders, and back, and neck, and after a long time, I was deep underwater, cradled in a peaceful aquatic womb. Shielded in blue stillness, I slept, Zi's whispers drifting through my dreams.
I slumbered and sang through the millennia. Every song was woven from the things I had heard and felt during my rest, and each was different. Sometimes the universe itself seemed to bless us all and the flora and fauna of Zi prospered: these songs were drenched with light and brimming with hope for a perfect future. Sometimes Zi quaked and tore the very earth apart in her grief: these songs lamented her sorrow and furnished soothing notes for her wounds.
In time, the stories of wise trees and great mountains, fathomless oceans and restless tides, bright moons and countless stars wove their ancient yarns with the new and shining threads borne from the hopes of the Zoids and people now populating the lands and seas. Each time I awoke, I sang from deep within my lake, often with none but Zi herself to hear me. Still, she listened - she always listened - and when I had ceased, she lulled me back to my rest with her whispers and the serenity of small waves lapping against Windeen's shores.
"Watch over me," she breathed as I relaxed into the darkness.
"Always," I sang back to her, letting the notes reverberate through my belly and feet and down to her core before sleep overcame me.
I was awoken from faraway places by Zi's screams of anguish and her tears draining from my lake. Lightning crackled savage across the sky and I sensed clearly the evil that now hovered close at hand: a Zoid, one of my kin, one of Zi's children, who had lost its way and forgotten the mother's love from which we had all been born. I felt the fear and determination of the people and Zoids now teeming my innards, and understood that my time had come.
Guided by a knowledgeable and compassionate crew, energy streamed through me and I was able to lumber to my feet for the first time. Zi, through her weeping, was somehow able to hold up my enormous weight without buckling. My frames and joints were heavy with the depths of my slumbers and the spiraling passage of time, but I strode forth to defend Zi from the evil now plaguing her, singing my battle song with all of the strength that I had. When the Gravity Cannon was mounted upon my great back, I wove it, too, into my song: god-like vengeance against a foe too cruel to live, the valiant finality of righteous destruction.
When the second wayward Zoid emerged following the sacrifice of the first - a tall, black and red beast roaring into the heavens its thirst for annihilation - the despair from the very depths of the planet hit me like a shockwave. Zi had lost hope. In that moment, the blast of a charged particle cannon violently struck my chest, and Zi, despondent, gave way beneath me. The terrified humans fired their final salvo and last hope from my great cannon: a blue Blade Liger and its brave pilot, arcing gracefully through the void, embracing their fates together.
I lay in the scorching desert heat, hopelessly trapped in the Gurrill Plateau's rocky maw, watching, listening. The black monster fell for the last time, and Zi reclaimed it for her own. She was quiet now, shaken from all that had happened. When birdsong began to filter through the air some time later, however, I knew that she would recover.
My song spills forth from me, full and sweet and heartbreaking. Zi will never forget what has happened here, and, though I am wounded, I must tell this tale: loss and heroism, sadness and beauty, darkness and light. My haunting notes will echo across the planet in the centuries to come, long after I have returned to my dreams.
"Watch over me," Zi whispers. The midnight sky is radiant with stars. My slumber will come soon.
"Always," I sing back, a bright, lilting sound beyond time, not so much heard as felt.
Author's Note: Thank you for reading. Yes, I stretched the canon of the anime to the breaking point, but I thought Zi could use a good origin story. The Ultrasaurus always seemed, to me, to be a wise, timeless creature, almost not of that planet. And who among you has been able to hear its whalesong cries from the anime without goosebumps, anyway?
Reviews, as always, are deeply appreciated.