Author: Xenoblade Chronicles belong to its awesome creators! I'm very thankful for the experience this game gave me!
Because of my fan-geekiness, I've decided this will be the first story on my uncle's account. If you didn't follow his latest story, I'm Shurpuff, nephew of Merlin ("of Honore") whose name's on this account. He's given me permission to use his account (like he did for his old WoW account) for posting my own attempts at fanfiction. I'll be posting a host of stories soon, so please look forward to them, and have a great day!
**Spoilers for complete game**
The sliding door opened. "Klaus, we've got a bit of a problem on one of the sectors. Apparently some bored tech saw fit to add a joke code inside. It's made one heck of a mess in there, and it'll take us months to-" Meyneth looked up, and then she paled. Her fellow scientist, head of the research, was already at the controls. "Wait, you're not seriously going to start that thing now?"
"Everything must have a beginning-" intoned Klaus, his eyes on the viewscreen displaying Earth.
"I realize that, but we've a veritable mess to take care of first before moving on-"
"The birth of a universe-a feat only gods can will. And now here I am, the key to the divine under my fingertips."
"Wait. Klaus! No!" She managed to stop his hand from pressing the button. "You start this experiment with the joke code still in there and who knows what might happen. You won't be getting funding for a thousand years!"
"New universe go!" BLEEP.
"NOOO!" And all was a blur of light.
Friends, families, enemies should know this, but I tell again: long before Great Migration, when there was Big Sea and Big Sky, there were two gods who were fighting over food.
One was Biopon. Other Mechopon.
A thousand years to fight and fight and fight. Endless food fight.
Until both tired, and fell asleep.
**Longstick Valley, at the Last Battle**
Shrill cries of retreat sounded. The Mechon advance was relentless-as nopon after nopon were consumed by the grotesquely shaped metal born creatures. Some were scooped up into claws as wide as a dino-beast's mouth; while others were merely squished into bits.
Several catapults, once repeatedly launching large, red-balls of exploding fire, were abandoned when the enemy line reached them, as flocks of their screaming nopon operators fell back.
Into the hopeless situation, an armor-clad dark-furred nopon descended, carried by his wings from a pterix-carrier: one of the few ones left after a devastating dogfight. In his hand was a weapon that radiated power, a tribal staff tipped by a fearsome biting visage whose eyes glowed and emitted blue energy.
Uttering a battle cry this nopon slammed the weapon into the ground amidst a huddle of Mechon, which created a radiating shockwave that felled all his foes. With a fearsome agility that belied his body's height, shape and weight the nopon warrior weaved through the legs of the Mechon, batting the weapon through each which made each enemy explode in a shower of junk.
"Stupid mek-meks!" said the nopon, after driving the biter into a Mechon's torso. "Attacking us during feed-time, how evil are you?" Twirling his weapon high in the air, the nopon brought it down, causing a beam of light to erupt from the tip, which annihilated a wave of charging Mechon.
In the lull of battle, a group of similarly armored nopon approached. "Dunban!" said the nopon at the helm. This one was a venerable bearded nopon, who was a centimeter taller than the one called Dunban. "Time to retreat! Big shield drawn on Colony 6! We must hurry before closing!" Beside him loped a lean-looking nopon, who although sporting his own paunch, nevertheless looked thinner than the group he was with, as if he'd missed many mealtimes.
Dunban seemed to think. "Retreat is good..."
"Yes! Retreat! Mumkhar still hungry!" cried the lean-looking nopon.
"On other side, let us fight!" declared Dunban, thrusting his weapon into the air.
"What?" "Stupid idea!"
A barrage of artillery came sailing in, but the keen nopon sense of hearing made them jump clear in time.
"Hold the line means more time for family and friends to escape. Hold the line and fight means chance of big win, and we get more time to eat than fight. Hold the line and change our futures! For the ones we love, we must try and fight!" Dunban continued.
"Why so confident?" asked Mumkhar.
Dunban smirked, and held up his gleaming weapon.
"I keep say it's stupid, Dunban!" said the bearded nopon who'd hit Dunban on the head.
"I know what Monapon do to Dunban body! I see results from doctor! Monapon eating up Dunban body from inside!"
"Is Dickson who old and stupid! Dunban strong! See?" With that he made another swing, creating a wave of energy that cleared the sky of aerial Mechon.
After, the two nopon had a staring contest.
"Okay," conceded Dickson, leaning back. He adjusted the scope on his shooter. "Just don't come cry to daddypon when time comes."
"Then I will fall back with group!" said Mumkhar, who was already turning around to bounce off.
"Wait!" said Dunban, grabbing ahold of Mumkhar's wings and dragging him back. "We need great warrior like Mumkhar! We need Mumkhar the Orluga Gutter!" Dunban pointed to the spikes attached to Mumkhar's wings and hands. Mumkhar groaned.
"Sirs! Sirs! Enemy force inbound!" said a soldier nopon.
"Come on everyone!" Dunban shouted. "Charge!"
Mumkhar lagged behind as far as he could, frowning and muttering darkly to himself all the while, until he noticed he was now alone smack-dab in the middle of a warzone and he bounced forward to join his comrades.
That was the Battle of Longstick Valley. In the end, alone, Dunban stood his ground and used up all of the Monapon's power to blunt the Mechon advance at great cost to his own life. It bought enough time for the nopon to recover their dead and flee back to Biopon. There were a lot of dead. It necessitated a lot of feasts.
One year later, two nopon walked along the outskirts of their colony. One was named Shulk, a blonde-furred nopon wearing protective goggles over his eyes. Apprentice to Colony 9's master technologist Dickson, Shulk had a deft hand with mechanical things, which also included a slight knowledge of Mechon. That made him one of the few who got to view and study the Monapon on a daily basis-which had become inert following Dunban's miracle at Longstick Valley. He carried along his equipment and had an experimental melon slicer draped along his back, brought along for any emergency fight with monsters.
But the bulk of the fighting would fall on his companion and best friend, Reyn, an auburn-furred nopon who'd let himself go considerably (a necessity for soldier nopons to prepare for "rounding down" during actual combat). He was noticeably bigger than Shulk, and also a head taller. A satisfied smile was on his face as he trudged along. Both of his wings were covered in a heavy metallic shell.
The two had been commanded to go through the Tephra Cave on a routine assignment to check on reports of fuel cylinders near the Magmell Ruins. Earlier that day, Dickson had literally kicked his apprentice out of the laboratories, for the young nopon had been too obsessed lately with the Monapon, as his friends had noticed.
Reyn was literally bouncing along-having just received the news of a promotion to active duty, he had been in a considerably good mood for a long week.
"What, Shulk?" The nopon had stopped just shy of the cave entrance. Reyn looked and sighed, his wings drooping visibly.
Another young nopon stood there, golden-furred, sprightly and smiling. This was Fiora, their best friend, who'd made Reyn promise to keep Shulk safe on the assignment, but apparently decided the nopon's promise wasn't enough. Younger sister to the Heropon Dunban, Fiora was an excellent cook: singlehandedly providing for the needs of her brother and herself by going outside the colony to hunt for ingredients and then coming back to cook them-creating a store good for a week all in a day. Because of this and certain other traits, she was the most desired mamapon catch in Colony 9.
"Reyn and Shulk very forgetful!" said Fiora, who'd bounded forward to meet them. "Forget to bring food like little kiddypon!" She cradled three boxes of food in one wing and held them out.
"Fiora, I know why you here!" said Reyn, pointing accusingly. "Fiora don't trust Reyn! Even if Reyn make big promise!"
"Reyn has big fish for brains!" Fiora said. "What if forget promise?"
"Please no fight!" said Shulk, bouncing to step between them. "We friends! Best friends!"
With situation diffused, the three decided to head on in as a group including Fiora. Just as they were about to descend into the ill-lit passage, Fiora said, "Reyn forget spiders in Tephra? Big spiders!"
"What?" Reyn shouted, who then looked as if he were about to die.
"Friends need to be ready!" said Shulk, giving his friend a reassuring tap. "Even Reyn!"
"R-r-r-right... yes! Reyn strong!" the nopon said, who began dashing into the cave.
"Reyn!" said Shulk in alarm, who had no choice but follow. Fiora giggled, as she too waddled after them.
The trio had a grand adventure wandering around Tephra-until Reyn's mishandling of Shulk's equipment caused severe damage to their map. This happened right as they were in the middle of the cave surrounded by numerous skulking enemies (and spiders). Of course, to try to redeem himself, Reyn volunteered leading them to their destination, claiming to know the place like he'd spent all his life living there.
"This third time we pass that light..."
"We going circles! Reyn so dumb!"
In the end, there were no bad feelings: after a while they spotted a nopon on patrol who led them to the ruins. Reyn looked abashed and Fiora a little peeved; while Shulk looked like he really wanted to laugh but tried to refrain. They were able to do Shulk's assignment just as night came on, the normal time for last meal and then sleep for any good-minded nopon.
That was when disaster struck.
It was a horrific construction of steel, black as shadow, shaped like a fat, monstrous insect and oozing a cloying malice that would send any nopon of all sizes scurrying for their mamapons. In truth, all Mechon had this alien effect on nopon, but this model-unrecognized by many war veterans-commanded the invasion of Colony 9 with such masterful dread that some soldiers even broke ranks to flee.
To Shulk, it was his worst nightmares realized-and not for the more obvious reasons.
The trio had quickly swam through piranhax infested waters when the alarm came, abandoning their prior task readily. Returning, they found the Colony in chaos, the aerial Mechon strike force having obliterated their own anti-air launchers, leaving it vulnerable to ground assault. The descending Mechon bypassed the defenses atop the towers to the meaty underbelly of the residential areas, where frightened citizens were consumed almost greedily by the invaders.
First they'd went to Fiora and Dunban's home that was close to the entrance, which was miraculously free of Mechon. Finding none, they moved on to the residential district, where all the screaming was.
Shulk had then surmised their target being the Monapon, and wanted to go up there quickly, but was just as soon shot down by Reyn and Fiora, who reasoned that it'd be suicide to head up through waves of enemies. He was just one nopon, after all.
Wringing their wings for something to do, Shulk hit on the idea of helping by activating the forbidden defense system that Colony 9 was built upon. Law dictated no single pon, unless under pain of death, was allowed to push the big green button deep inside the labs to activate the unknown mechanism that was supposedly for defending the Colony.
"But this real death time!"
"We be in trouble!" said Reyn.
"C'mon Reyn wuss! Is friend blind? Many pon dying! Must save Colony!" said Fiora.
The fat nopon grunted, finally agreeing. It smashed its wings together, activating the weaponry attached to the armor-a pair of whirring, blade-edged standard-issue shields.
"Let's get started!" Beside him, his friends nodded grimly, bringing out their makeshift weapons-Shulk his weapon slicer and various gadgets, and Fiora her kitchen knives (each sharper than a piranhax's tooth).
They moved quickly through the swarms of larger Mechon, darting through their feet before they could be scooped up. Twice they had to run from tentacled Mechon before its limbs could reach them. And then they had stop to contend with shorter Mechon that were as small and quick as the average nopon and were also equipped with stun tasers. They fought hard, displaying ferocious teamwork.
An ambush awaited them at the door to the lab, as if the Mechon had been waiting for them. Shulk and Reyn made it so Fiora could slip through the legs of the Mechon blocking the door, but now their action had gotten them completely surrounded by a variety of hostile Mechon.
"Is it Reyn's last battle? I wanted to be Heropon!"
"Shulk happy to be by friend side at end," said Shulk, who despite his words felt really, really scared. He held a grenade in his hand, hoping to deny the Mechons their feast when it came down to it.
But they hadn't had their last stand. Just as the end approached, help came, in the form of a surprising nopon: Dunban! They cheered at the sight of the Heropon wielding the Monapon once more, and it was as if they were right there at the Battle of Longstick Valley. He made such a sight, standing on top of a fallen Mechon, proclaiming in a voice unbroken by his wounds: "Come, friends! Defend what is ours! Charge towards future!" Then he'd twirled the shining Monapon, which filled the two with a surge of energy.
Together, they rallied and repelled the ambush, sending the aerial Mechon flying.
"Where's Fiora?" Dunban demanded, in the lull.
"She-" Reyn was interrupted by a stray shell sent their way, which decimated the entrance to the ruins behind them. The rest of the outcropping collapsed inward into a pile of thick rubble.
"Fiora!" Dunban cried.
"No give up! No give up! Fiora smart! Fiora know where control room is!" said Shulk. "Hidden passage through lab! We find Fiora there!" He pointed in the direction of the lab.
"Great!" All of them felt rejuvenated by this. Dunban made as if to raise the Monapon, but stumbled and fell.
"Dunban? Dunban!" Energy coursed through the nopon's body as he crumpled into himself, wings flailing wide.
"Monapon hurting Dunban still," Shulk realized, staring at the pulsating rod. He raised his goggles to the top of his head.
The earth shook. Reyn yelped, seeing several more Mechon standing in their way.
"Break... despair... fight... the..." Dunban gathered himself, raising the crackling staff high before swinging downward. But he couldn't make it; he stumbled again, this time dropping the Monapon. "Argh!"
Shield blades whirling, Reyn stepped forward. "Shulk, take Dunban to lab. I hold line this time! I be Heropon!" Shulk knew his friend wouldn't make it. He knew he and Dunban wouldn't even fare better.
It had been in that moment that he made up his mind. Swallowing his fear, and trusting his knowledge of the Monapon to serve him, he dashed forward, past Reyn and towards the fallen staff. Grabbing it hastily with his wings, he swung the weapon forward, even as the telltale surge of the Monapon's power rushed through him as it had Dunban.
Shulk growled, glaring at the mounted symbol that radiated Mechon-killing energy. He was lost, unable to even hear his companions now.
"I not Heropon," he said, "But I too fight! For the Nopon!" With a supreme effort, he carried the Monapon aloft-and charged.
All at once, the world returned to full focus, and Shulk became aware of the Monapon empowering him. Everything seemed in slow motion, as if the Mechon were dull orlugas. He easily dodged several shots, before closing in and swinging firmly with the Monapon.
Behind him, the two Nopon couldn't believe their eyes. Shulk could control the Monapon? They had little time to gawk, as the familiar energy of the Monapon filled them, and they too bounced after their friend to clear a path to the labs.
Any nopon could see the forbidden weapon from anywhere in the village: its inert form jutted out into the air like a bird's beak. What few knew, however, was that the "beak" was a tower, and the actual weapon was located in a small alcove at the tip. The control room was located somewhere near the base, and that was where Fiora should be, Shulk explained, if she'd reached it. Moments before reaching the lab, they got their answer.
The beaktip had exploded a fountain of golden light, quickly forming into orbs that flung themselves into the air at the Mechon forces. A loud cheer came up from the beleaguered forces as the aerial units blossomed into scrap.
"Come, need to secure Fiora!" said Dunban, tearing his satisfied eyes from the sight. Clutched in one wing was a steel crowbar, but combined with the Monapon's power and his skill, it was just as deadly as any blade.
As they rushed in, Dunban's senses caught a dark blur descend from the exploding Mechon above. Turning to look, he then had just enough time to push everyone down before the lab shook from a great impact.
They had scrambled through unstable corridors, using the Monapon as a light source in the dimmed place. They reached the secret doorway leading to the weapon, which was still intact. Each held one concern foremost in their minds for their friend-Dunban even more so-as he prayed that the unseen impact wasn't anything too alarming.
They arrived in time to see the monster, ducking under flying debris as it cleaved old, hard stone with its claw-tipped limbs. It ripped through the crater it had made in the tower like it was made of grass. Shulk hesitated only once, before he sensed Fiora's presence hiding in the corridor somewhere beyond the Mechon.
They soon found her, after barreling past the thing's smaller reinforcements, sneaking through makeshift tunnel under a broken ceiling brought low. The Mechon was still rampaging somewhere far to her left, its back to her location.
In that moment, they thought it was safe.
In that moment, everything seemed fine.
In that moment, Shulk felt like a Heropon.
That moment would shape Shulk's and everyone's destiny, forever.
The creature abruptly turned-Dunban feeling the heat of its malice turned towards them-and tore through the scaffolding directly above Fiora.
There was a scream, a rumble and then as the trio desperately charged forward, a sickening, squelching sound.
"Good that food stores intact."
"Lucky that stupid spiders don't know what real food is."
"Shulk still glad Reyn safe."
"Yep! Without Shulk, Reyn would be spider food! Monapon really handy!"
The pair took a deep breath as they emerged from dank tunnel onto green-laden scenery. The wind was at their back, as if urging them onward in their quest.
They looked around them, eyes wide at the sight, and then turned their sight upward towards the Big Sky.
Above, they saw the Biopon, frozen in time in the act of throwing another piece of food. A long stick had buried its way into its paunch, and Shulk followed it to the hand of the Mechopon, whose masked visage loomed over them above the clouds like a silent god.
"Always cool thing to see."
Shulk clenched his wing around the Monapon's body, as he stared into the impassive, alien face of the titanic Mechopon.
"Our enemy." Reyn followed his gaze.
Shulk's gaze flashed a piercing hatred. "We bring payback for Fiora."
Grim-faced Reyn waddled forward. "For Fiora."
As if hearing them, the wind intensified, carrying their hatred across the wide gulf separating the titans towards the Mechopon. That was the start of Shulk's tale: the journey, the friends he made, the Mechon, and the Monapon.