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The Trial Of Juno: The Dawn Of Hope (PG-13)

Avenger Angel

Warrior of Heaven
Chapter 43
Unexpected​

I kept thinking of the ways we could take apart Lorenza without difficultly. If we attacked that outpost and ended up failing, it would be a very costly mistake. I needed to be sure that outpost was demolished so we could move on to Jasandax and hopefully rip past their defenses.

“Just how many soldiers are you going to take to attack Lorenza?” Namdor asked, looking at me in question.

“I planned on attacking Jasandax quickly after Lorenza has been leveled to the ground.” I told the four of them, “That would mean we would need every soldier possible to come with us.”

Baladax looked strangely at me, but then he realized what I was planning. To put it short, we wanted this seemingly endless war to be over with.

“This is our last chance.” I told the four of them, “Either we try our ultimate best to bring destruction to Jasandax and the rest of the Crimson Stars army, or we die trying. I want every possible soldier available to be in that attack.”

“While we are suffering from considerable losses,” Namdor told me, looking away for a moment, “Having the entire Silver Rebellion attack force in one assault will be extremely devastating. Lorenza will be unprepared for the assault and will have no chance of survival but I’m not sure how the battle between the Silver Rebellion army and Jasandax will turn out.”

Hearing that Lorenza was going to be toast was something good to hear, but then again, if we were going to lose at Jasandax, we would end up losing the entire war. But from the way I felt about it, we really had no other choice…

“It’s this or nothing.” I told Namdor and the others, “While the Crimson Stars have a bigger attack force overall, they’re not all in the same area, and there should be certainly less of them at Jasandax then we have here. The final outcome of this war will be determined in this one last battle.”

“If Jasandax falls,” Baladax told the four of us, “The war is over. You don’t know how sick I am of fighting endlessly for years and years. You’re right Juno. Achilles was wrong this entire time. We don’t have any more time for nonsense and attacking outposts when our real target should be the home of our enemy.”

It wasn’t very long after that when we made it very clear what we were going to do next. In very little time, the whole city of Symarix knew of our plan. This was our only chance to pull through in this seemingly endless onslaught. I knew we had a chance to win if the entire army fought as one overwhelming force. But, it wasn’t that which was bothering me. If anything was, I already knew that the battle between us and Jasandax was going to be an extremely bloody one.

In only a week, we would already be preparing to leave for an onslaught I knew I would never forget. Already, the troops we had deployed were returning to Symarix to gather as one, overwhelming force. Then, after five days worth of time of organizing, planning, and preparing our method of attack and what weapons we were going to use, I had been given a head count of how many soldiers we have available for this gruesome attack. I couldn’t believe the number, being only a little above thirty thousand soldiers. It didn’t take me very long to realize that we were indeed a force to be reckoned with. Despite all the fear and terror we would embrace, we were not going to be an easy enemy for the Crimson Stars to destroy.

With our weapons loaded, our machines of war ready to be released to render terror, we were ready for a battle neither side would ever forget. Luckily, we were ready for it first.

It wasn’t long before that day of departure had come. We were going to try and do our ultimate best to give the people of Symarix and the few others of the Silver Rebellion one last chance at peace and prosperity. Something inside of me told me very strongly that this was the best way to resolve the fighting as soon as possible, if not the only way…

It was then that Sinis told me that we should get moving along, but there was something I wanted to do before we had left. I wanted to say something to each and every soldier about the seriousness of this battle. Something that would inspire them that this wasn’t about purpose, it was about hope… about believing…

I was surprised it actually wasn’t customary for a General to give a speech to his soldiers before they had set off to battle. I knew I had never seen Achilles do it or anyone else for that matter, but I decided I was going to do it. Somehow they would be broadcasting it through radio, even then when I looked at the equipment they used, it looked much different from what we used long ago, when we were back home. Regardless, they assured me every soldier would hear it, since I would be talking through microphone to a large group of soldiers, but their speakers would assist me in reaching the rest of them. Soon enough, they had all gathered in front of me…

“Today you embark on the final journey that this country will ever have to embrace.” I began, looking into each of their eyes, “For the longest time, there was doubt among the many liberty-loving people of this nation that it would be possible to break free from these chains that keep us bound to our enemy. But I’m going to tell you that if we prove successful in these upcoming tribulations, the rock of the Crimson Stars will be shattered, and we will be able to come home to remember that which matters most…”

There was silence among them, and I could already see that this was unexpected. It was strange to see a custom so widely practiced elsewhere to be completely unheard of here.

“Through courage and bravery, we have been able to defend our homeland to the best of our ability, but now is the time to strike back. Now it is time for us to put an end to the injustice that we’ve faced for so many years. Too many times I’ve seen the endless fear bring more desperation than actual physical wounds. Too many times I’ve seen a sense of hopelessness dwell in these streets. But those days of misery will soon be over with. There will be a time when the common citizen of Symarix will have nothing to fear. They will see no desperation, and no longer will children be drafted as soldiers before they are even born. Those days of desolation… will be over soon…”

And then, came a feeling that I have never felt before. Never before have I felt a feeling of such strong belonging…

“Though I’ve never said this to anyone,” I began again, “But from where I came before arriving here, we didn’t have a sky that shook and trembled with anguish, one that didn’t rain impurity itself among its people below. We didn’t have fields and fields of tortured land, and endless deserts of despair. We lived under a shining blue sky with a bright sun that illuminated the world around us, rather than kept us bound to darkness. We had fields of fertile grass and forests that stretched beyond what the eye could see. I believe that we can make that possible. I already know that many of you don’t think such a thing is even possible, but I want to believe otherwise.”

I had gotten a strange reaction, and then something stopped me for a moment. I then felt a presence that told me that it wasn’t always like this. No, because I had remembered…

There will be a time when fire rushes from the sky and pain and desperation will be closer to your heart than ever.

No, the skies didn’t always scream terror like I once had thought. I could see in their eyes that some of them had seen brighter days, ones without the torment or suffering. I had realized… there was a time that everything was once bright like we always had. Still, we weren’t there yet…

“I will be fighting alongside you.” I said to them, beginning to close off, “I will be your leader, as well as your fellow soldier, your ally. I will be someone you can trust in, as I always have. Because we believe in each other, we will not fail. I promise you…”

It was over. My speech was greeted with silence, but that didn’t matter. We marched proudly through the streets as we headed toward the gate, but I’ll never forget the sights of how supportive the citizens of Symarix were as we made those last paces through the city. Many of them were throwing flower petals outside their window. I had picked one up and realized there was a way for something to flourish here. It was no different from the petal of any other flower I have seen, regardless of how long ago it was. I tried for one moment to visualize the barren desert fields of Kivistal as bright and green, rather than the wasteland that it was. At a time like this, it seemed so possible… so near.

For one moment, I had seen someone rushing through the crowds, and I stopped to see who it was. Then, I realized it was Sita. She had rushed up to me and greeted me with a hug.

“Please promise me you’ll come back.” Sita said, nearly crying, “Please promise me…”

I had hugged her in return, but then a dark feeling had overcome me. After this fight had concluded, there was no way I could return. For as much as I loved Sita and this great city of Symarix, it wasn’t home. And then, there was something else…

“Sita, please understand that as I fight alongside my brethren in battle,” I told her firmly, “I am still at risk. I can’t promise anything.”

She had begun to cry, but I really couldn’t lie to her.

“Sita, just remember that I love you.” I said to her, just before leaving her, “No matter what happens. No matter what…”

Then, I had to leave her behind. It felt hard to do something like that, but I couldn’t promise anything regarding my return. I just couldn’t…

We embarked on one, last great crusade that I would never forget. We left with the ringing of cheers and jubilee in our ears. As we headed out of the gates, we made our way toward Lorenza as one, massive force, tied as a brotherhood of bravery and steel.

I will never forget…
 

guiltysparkzz

AKA mattgcn
It is near the end. No more than 4 chapters less I believe..

It gets REALLLY good here.
 

Sike Saner

Peace to the Mountain
With our weapons loaded, our machines of war ready to be released to render terror, we were ready for a battle neither side would ever forget.

A very strong line, one that could serve as a sort of tagline for this chapter. I really like it.


Equally powerful was Juno's speech. God, that was fricking cool. ^^

Bossness lies on the horizon; that much is clear. I look very much forward to the upcoming chapters from this point. ^^
 

Avenger Angel

Warrior of Heaven
I’ve got to stop falling behind in updating this. Stupid hard drive…

Seijiro Mafuné said:
Sad... but it is going to pick up pace. Is this part nearing the end?

Nearing, yeah, but there’s still a ways to go. It’s about toward the second half of the Blazing Skies.

guiltysparkzz said:
It is near the end. No more than 4 chapters less I believe..

It gets REALLLY good here.

Yeah, honestly I think this is where the best parts of the story come from. Again, not spoiling anything…

Sike Saner said:
A very strong line, one that could serve as a sort of tagline for this chapter. I really like it.


Equally powerful was Juno's speech. God, that was fricking cool. ^^

Bossness lies on the horizon; that much is clear. I look very much forward to the upcoming chapters from this point. ^^

They’re coming, provided my computer doesn’t foul up again. You’ll like the way Juno fights Zander, it’s a surprise I’m definitely not spoiling. Heck, that would be the biggest spoiler in the entire story… :p
 

Avenger Angel

Warrior of Heaven
Chapter 44
A Call to Arms​

Like great, massive bulldozers, the Armadillo tanks rolled across the land, crushing every rock that they rolled over. The much smaller Land Splitter dragsters traveled alongside, kicking up dust and dirt as they traveled at the same speed we were marching.

Regardless of the fact I could use a Zephyr-E with ease, Sinis insisted that I take a caliber rifle instead. Of all the countless drawings and sculptures that depicted me, it always depicted me using a caliber rifle instead, so I was given one that had been highly enhanced with more power and less recoil. I don’t know why anyone felt that just because I was a higher rank meant I should be getting a more powerful weapon. But if this was the way he wanted it, it wasn’t going to be a problem to me.

Slowly we crept toward Lorenza, as one massive force they would never suspect would be coming right toward them. We moved like one massive wave, ready to swallow up anything that stood in our way, just before we crashed against the massive rock of Jasandax…

My plan was simple. We slept at night, marched in the morning, take a break around noon, and continue until it got late. I felt there was no point in overworking the same comrades you expect to fight to the death. There was nothing I needed more than for them to perform their best even under the intense fear and pressure of battle. That was what I called courage.

Unlike what I had seen many times before, there was no wave of chilling air, or sense of doubt that I had witnessed during Achilles’s command. There was no reconsideration or disrespect, no disbelief in the one who led them to battle. They were with someone who they could trust. And as I realized that powerful feeling, I knew I could give them nothing less than absolute victory… no matter what the price…

Still, I didn’t fly in the air riding on top of Latias, but instead stayed on the ground, walking alongside the ones I trusted the most. And unlike the many military leaders that cowered behind their own troops, using them as a shield, I joined the ranks of those in the frontline. Even when they tried to make me aware of the danger that was presented with being there, I insisted on leading them into combat first, something I knew that many leaders both here on Kivistal and back on Earth would never even think about doing.

It wasn’t long before we had seen the fortress of Lorenza in the distance, and I realized it was much smaller than Macomb, simply nothing more than a shield to prevent an outright direct attack against Jasandax. Once we were only two miles away from the fortress, I was already aware of how I wanted this to be handled. We stood there before the fortress, ranks upon ranks of soldiers ready to destroy the one obstacle that stood in the way of our true target. While the fortress was lying asleep, we were going to give them a loud awakening.

“Bring forward the tanks!” I shouted loudly, enough so they could hear me.

Baladax, Namdor and I had already planned that we would attack the small fortress with our heavy artillery at first, inflicting as much damage as possible. When the tanks had fully crept forward, they readied their cannons, prepared to blast apart the wall the surrounded the fortress.

“That’s strange,” A Totodile had said nearby, “We used to always attack first with the Storm Riders…”

I couldn’t believe that when I heard it, and then I realized why it was all so clear our military progress had been so shameful in the past. Attacking with Storm Riders first would be suicide. How could anyone expect them to survive the anti-air defense so many of these fortresses had been armed with?

When I saw the cannons where ready, I looked forward firmly and strongly. I then raised my arm into the air.

“Fire!” I shouted as loud as I could.

And suddenly, the ground shook with the massive blasting of heavy artillery, firing flaming tank shells directed toward the southern wall. The shells had slammed into the wall, dealing serious damage in very little time. In only seconds, the entire southern wall had been unable to withstand the blasting of tank shells from every Armadillo tank the Silver Rebellion could produce for this assault.

Still, even after we shattered the wall into rubble, we were now prepared to deliver serious damage to the one building that the fortress consisted of. It honestly looked like it could withstand even less than Macomb’s prison. I had heard an alarm ring out, so I knew we had to act fast.

Once the tanks had reloaded, they fired again, sending another trembling blast through the ground, shaking the earth below us. The shells had hit the wall of the fortress itself, ripping apart the wall until the hollow interior was exposed.

And then, I had looked up into the sky and saw swarms and swarms of Wind Strikers, heading right toward us. We didn’t have a single Storm Rider in the sky, but that was my whole intention. This was going to be something they weren’t prepared for.

And it was going to cost them everything…

They came closer and closer. Still, the tanks continued pounding the already crumbling fortress with heavy rounds of ammunition. Still, their fleets of Wind Strikers were homing in, and I already knew what they were capable of.

“Draw arms.” I commanded the soldiers around me.

At that moment, as I drew my caliber rifle, so did everyone else around me, sending a wave of locking rifles through the field of soldiers behind me.

“Shouldn’t we send up some Storm Riders?” The Totodile asked me, wondering why my tactics were so different from the ones that Achilles used.

“That’s just what they expect to see when they come down here.” I silently told him as the Wind Strikers drew closer, “And normally, they would go after them. But what if they aren’t there?”

Those Wind Strikers must have been very brave or very insane, for their chances of defeating us were next to nothing. No, they were nothing. They had no chance…

“FIRE!” I shouted to all the soldiers around me.

And then, the air around us had exploded with gunfire, and every one of us had targeted the Wind Strikers. Despite the fact there were nearly a hundred of them in the sky, they dropped like flies sprayed with a poisonous gas. The machine guns attached to the back of the Land Splitters were especially loud and lethal, ripping apart the underside of the Skarmories like a knife through paper. Within just ten seconds, the entire group was falling a very long way down toward the ground. Each of them hit the ground hard, rolling over from the intense impact completely lifeless.

Some of the soldiers inside the base had managed to make their way out, only to be instantly overwhelmed at the size of the attacking force, and were shot to ribbons in an instant. The tanks had nearly shot their way through the fortress, killing plenty of soldiers inside before they even had a chance to fight back. Pieces of the fortress were flying everywhere during each successful blast, and levels were crumbling on top of each other.

When I saw the top level completely crumble on top of the third, I knew it was over. It wasn’t long before the entire fortress collapsed, leaving only pieces of the west and east walls still standing. Still, we had already predicted this battle wouldn’t be a problem. I was surprised that Lorenza had been made as one critical outpost for Jasandax. We had plowed it down to the ground, with very little problem.

“Achilles never would have thought of this…” The Totodile said to me, baffled at the amazing success of the battle, “Bringing the entire Silver Rebellion army to the outpost of Lorenza? Never in a million years.”

“This is only an example of the potential that we have.” I said to the Totodile, “This wasn’t the real battle. Unfortunately, our presence hasn’t likely gone undetected. Jasandax will be ready, but so will we, more than we have ever been before.”

All that lay before us now was the ruins of the single fortress that stopped us from moving toward Jasandax. Already, I could tell Zander and his leaders were going to be shocked at how fast we ripped Lorenza to pieces, thinking we would have never made it this far considering it was only days ago that the Crimson Stars were attacking the beloved city of Symarix. Now, it would be us who would be attacking their way of life, their tyranny over the innocent.

Today, we were able to win because of our overwhelming number and our unexpected strike. But I knew in the battle ahead, everything was going to be different. It was going to be evenly matched, and this time Jasandax was going to prepared for our attack. But would they be prepared enough…?

Regardless, we made our way past the fortress and drew ever so closer to the massive city of Jasandax, the beating heart of the Crimson Stars. The battle with Lorenza had been short-lived, but only because they weren’t prepared to deal with our entire army. But this upcoming onslaught was going to be something far more different than that. Many lives were going to be lost on both sides, no matter how I approached the situation.

I could only hope and fight for the best at a time like this…
 

General Blaze

Not the face!
:eek: That..was...AWSOME!! Seriously, the battle scene kicked butt. I'm impressed! I'm now eagerly waiting for the next chapter.
 
Wow. I've never read a battle depicted with such artistry before. The description, the characters, the plot, and the pace continue to be high caliber.
Allow me to make a guess.
 

Avenger Angel

Warrior of Heaven
General Blaze said:
:eek: That..was...AWSOME!! Seriously, the battle scene kicked butt. I'm impressed! I'm now eagerly waiting for the next chapter.

Heh, thank you. But it gets even better when they get into Jasandax...

And of course when Juno confronts Zander...

Infinite Master Sceptile said:
Wow. I've never read a battle depicted with such artistry before. The description, the characters, the plot, and the pace continue to be high caliber.
Allow me to make a guess.

Artistry is... quite a word for it, thank you. It's actually pretty tough to do it since so many things are happening at once and you can't show it all like a movie could.

Enjoy the next chapter, the fighting really gets intensified here.
 

Avenger Angel

Warrior of Heaven
Chapter 45
Defiant Stand

We had left the ruined fortress of Lorenza behind us, still smoking from the blasting. The only loses we suffered in that battle were the expired tank shells and a few rounds of ammunition. Not a single casualty resulted because of the attack, which I found remarkable. Still, we crept toward the massive city of Jasandax, which lasted another three days. Then, just ahead, we had seen the massive city in the distance. Closer and closer we drew, like silent killers in the night. But it wasn’t going to be a silent battle, and it wasn’t going to be painless either.

Along with the massive size of Jasandax came the overwhelming power of its fortification. Large cannons were placed on the towering metal walls that shielded the city. It was larger than even Symarix, and I thought the city of the Silver Rebellion was massive. But, before we could even think about tearing our way into the city, we had to remove the defenses, and that was going to be much easier said than done.

Once we were in attacking range, I had grown cold seeing at least some sort of distress call had reached Jasandax, giving them enough time to prepare for our attack. Still, I could only predict that this city was attempting to pull back as many reinforcements, but it was already too late. None of them would reach the city in time…

Fields and fields of Wind Strikers were before us, as well as plenty of infantry troops and three massive VATS just waiting to attempt to run over our troops. I could make out more Talons, and then some other machines of war I hadn’t even recognized. Some of them looked like tanks, only there were plenty of variations, from large, flat ones to smaller ones obviously designed for more maneuverability. And then there were others the size of a small house with more large weapons placed on top of it, anything from guns to steamrollers covered by sharp knifes, meant just for running over troops.

“Oh no…” Said a voice only a few feet away from me, “We’re going to have to take down all of that? How are we going to do this?”

“With speed, courage, and bravery.” I responded, not even knowing who had said it among us.

It was then that I had ordered my fellow Strom Riders to release their mounts. The storms were growing stronger and brighter now, more than they had ever done before. A cold rush of wind had encircled us. I let the tanks move forward first, with one simple order to destroy as much of their heavy artillery as possible, and to stay as far away from the cannons on the walls as much as possible. I made the job of the infantry quite clear. Their job was to protect our machines from the Wind Strikers, because I already knew that once they had landed near them, it wouldn’t be very hard to disable them. And if the infantry led a charge against them, their job was to shoot them dead.

However, the job of the Storm Riders was different. Each of us had been armed with Inferno Grenades, set aside for using against the tanks of the Crimson Stars. Smothering their great machines with fire was a sure way of disabling them, but it was also extremely risky. I knew there was no chance I was going to lead such an attack until their infantry was in a charge, or we would be shot down the same way we would be shooting their Wind Strikers. Our mission was to remove the Wind Strikers, then destroy the machines, both on the walls and on the ground. And somewhere along the line, it was going to take Storm Riders to destroy the VATS. They were the only ones who could do it and avoid being shot due to the speed.

All of the Storm Riders had gathered behind the tanks. I wasn’t going to wait for the Crimson Stars to fire first, that would be ridiculous. We came here with every intention to fight, and there was no turning back now.

Sand, dust and dirt was kicked around as the lowly wind blew past us, whipping the colored crests and the feathers of the Pidgeots in its wake. Even though no one said it, we were all united, and we were all aware of it. Today there was going to be a great sacrifice, but it had to be done. We stood there under a sky of fire and anguish as we prepared for our final battle with the Crimson Stars. We stared at our enemy, and they stared back at us. We readied our weapons, and so did they.

The time for words was gone. There is always a time when mere words cannot stop the pain and suffering that one must go through because of others. There is always a time when words cannot stop the iron will of those oppressed. There is always a time when the only solution is through action, and I finally realized why war does exist…

Jake, Randy, and Alex. We were no longer trainers trying to catch a new Pokémon or trying to get the next badge. We were no longer traveled on a journey to be the best trainer we could be. Not anymore. We were no longer trainers…

We were soldiers…

It would only be moments now until I decided to unleash hell upon the Crimson Stars. I knew what I wanted to attack first. If we disabled all of their machines, then we would be on the upper hand. It would bring us one step closer to winning.

The waiting was over. The Armadillo tanks were obviously ready, so now it was up to me to begin this final battle, this last conflict to end all the shame and disgrace of this long, bloody war. Then, I grabbed the breath that would cause the end of many lives. It wasn’t easy to do…

“FIRE!” I screamed as loud as I could.

And then, the ground shook with the heavy blasting of artillery, rocking everything and filling the air with the deafening sound of blasting. I had looked ahead to see we had done considerable damage to their tanks and artillery, but it wasn’t over yet. Now it was my turn. We had plenty of anti-air support, but still, every Storm Rider we had needed to be up in the air, including me. I had signaled every Storm Rider to take flight, with me getting off the ground first. I headed high into the air, and down below I could already see that the Crimson Stars were returning fire. The heavy roaring of machine guns could be heard from everywhere.

And then, while I had told everyone to stay as far away from the cannons as much as possible, they had opened fire as well, releasing gigantic flaming shells that looked like fireballs. Their range was so massive it didn’t even matter. Down below, the Wind Strikers were preparing to take flight, but it wasn’t long before we had opened fire on them, trying to prevent as many of them reaching the skies as possible. I didn’t aim for their riders, and neither did anyone else. We didn’t need to shoot of them, each of their Skarmories was a bigger target to shoot, and so we shot them instead.

Only a few seconds later, they had opened fire upon us, and the bullets flew toward us like hail. Regardless, I kept firing furiously upon the group of them, not caring about my personal safety, I was only concerned about where the bullets were headed, and who they were going to kill.

And then, I heard the sounds of screaming that I would never forget. Those who were behind me, flying besides me were getting hit from the vicious oncoming fire. Still, I flew closer and closer to their machines, using all of my concentration as possible. I had only just begun to fight.

I had seen another wave of incoming fire from the Armadillos slam into the defending Crimson Stars, ripping away their machinery and blasting any infantry besides them to pieces, letting loose many unanswered cries of misery and pain. I ripped out one of my Inferno Grenades and yanked out the pin, and tossed it among the masses of Crimson Stars. The grenade fell until it almost seemed to disappear, and then I had seen it explode, covering a large group of their soldiers with consuming fire. Still, even from this high point in the sky, we were still being pounded with ammunition.

Then, even when we knew it was inevitable, the Wind Strikers had entered the sky, and then I focused on trying to kill as many of them as possible, even while we were still being shot from below. I could only wonder how Randy and Alex were getting through this. I had never seen so much devastation in front of my eyes. Never before…

The Wind Strikers ripped at us furiously, killing Storm Riders that were only feet away from me, and sending their riders, my comrades, screaming as they fell upon the world below, with nothing to save them from death…

Many of them had tried to aim at me, only I was the one to fire first. They had tried to aim for me rather than Latias, but I only turned around and shot directly at their Skarmory, ripping away their abdomen with my rifle and sending them plummeting to their doom. Even when they knew they were going to die, they still tried to fire upon me even while they fell, but it yielded very little success.

The fireball blasts from the cannons on the walls were no longer able to hit our attacking tanks from below, but instead hit our Storm Riders, immediately smothering them with flame and killing them instantly. I had looked around me and saw we were doing pretty poorly. Everywhere I looked, another Pidgeot was shot to death, or either the rider was shot right off their mount. I could only pray that Alex, Randy and I would make it through this hell alive…

It had looked like the sky itself was in flames. So many flaming shells were flying into us as we tried to mow down as many Wind Strikers as we could. Still, I knew that every second that passed, another good, noble warrior to the Silver Rebellion cause was passing away. As much as we tried to keep our edge in the conflict, we were being struck by a force just as rigid and determined as we were. Regardless, we were both losing…

I could feel the heat. Latias had been shot once but she was able to keep going. My mouth was dry as hell and my eyes were burning from the fire. We kept trying and trying, keeping at least some sort of hope alive in our hearts that something beneficial would arise from all this pain. But as each of us were feeling the pain ourselves, and watching our brothers die such painful and cruel deaths, we began to believe there wasn’t a chance anything good could come from this.

I must have killed hundreds by now, but I lost count. Down below we were winning, but up in the air, our performance was entirely shameful. But if we didn’t keep fighting up here, then everything was going to go wrong.

Down below, the Crimson Stars ground forces were being ripped to pieces. I had realized we gained a serious edge from removing their tanks first. All they had was charging infantry, and they were being cut down like grass. In only moments they would begin their attack on the wall, and they would start losing their defensive cannons once the wall began to crumble.

I had looked to my side, and I could have sworn I saw Randy through the entire conflict. He was surrounded, and I tried to help him by attacking his oppressors. He had tried to get away from the other four Wind Strikers until they had opened fire. I then watched in complete horror as Randy’s Pidgeot Fire Blaze was struck with seven bullets. The lifeless Pidgeot began to fall, taking Randy with him…

With all my energy, I tried to drive Latias as fast as she could toward Randy, who was quickly falling faster and faster. The four Wind Strikers were closing in after me, but I didn’t care for them. I knew Fire Blaze was gone, but I couldn’t let Randy die. I would never forgive myself if he did…

We were surging toward him as fast as we could, and slowly we began to catch up with him. The ground was coming closer now, but I wasn’t going to let him die. I was within only five feet of him, and he began to call me. I couldn’t make out what he said, but then six seconds later, I reached out and grabbed his hand. Once I got a grip on it, and threw him in back of me, and he had been able to hold on. I then tried to pull up Latias before we struck the ground. It was going to be too late…

Latias had slammed into the ground forcefully, throwing both Randy and I forward, and we hit the ground hard. I rolled over at least five times on the rocky ground before I stopped on my back, and I could see the battle in the sky. Randy had landed right next to me, and while he seemed he had taken some painful blows, he looked okay for the moment. I was aching all over.

The ground forces were in front of us, since we had landed behind them. One of the soldiers from the attacking force had seen us, and he had rushed over. It was a Marowak, and already I could sense his feeling that he thought we were dead…

“Say something… please…” He pleaded with us.

“I’m okay,” I said to him, trying to get up off the ground.

I then turned to Randy, and he had already been standing up. I then slowly walked over to Latias, who had still been lying on the ground. I realized the blow must have been hard for her as well…

I had put my hand over her, and suddenly she began to feel cold, like the warmth was leaving her body. She had been so still, never moving once. Then, I realized she wasn’t wounded or unconscious…

She was gone…
 

Kthleen

Wayfaring stranger
Holy snapz. Poor Blazewing.... I can't imagine how it must feel to unwittingly kill one friend to save another. I wonder what exactly his reaction will be.

I also wonder if this will be the battle.

A jolly good show, sir!
 

Avenger Angel

Warrior of Heaven
Kthleen said:
Holy snapz. Poor Blazewing.... I can't imagine how it must feel to unwittingly kill one friend to save another. I wonder what exactly his reaction will be.

I also wonder if this will be the battle.

A jolly good show, sir!

Heh, thanks, I'm glad you're enjoying it. It's not the battle between Juno and Zander yet... but's it's coming...
 

Avenger Angel

Warrior of Heaven
Chapter 46
The Longest Walk

Even among the restless shouting and blasting, I couldn’t help but think of how much I had just lost in those few seconds. Latias had been with me since the beginning. Without her, I never would have reached home. Even after the shedding of her own blood during my battle with Vorox and the bitter fight that was still raging on, she had been a faithful supporter. I would never forget the sacrifice she made that day to save my friend Randy.

“She isn’t…” The Marowak questioned, looking at her with concern.

“She’s dead…” I told him, still looking at her tightly shut eyes.

He was silent, and the only thing Randy did was just look on. Then, he came closer to me.

“I’m sorry…” Randy told me, looking depressed.

“This wasn’t your fault.” I told him, still looking at the fallen body of Latias, “Don’t ever think it is. You’ve done more than I’ve asked for this entire time. She did this… for both of us…”

I couldn’t help but shed a tear for her. Nothing else mattered at that moment, but then I was interrupted.

“Juno, I’m sorry but we must press on.” The Marowak told me, looking somewhat ashamed, “We’re getting closer to the wall.”

I felt horribly sick that I had to leave her behind, but I had no choice. I followed the Marowak back to our attacking force. Up in the air, I could see we were still losing. It was then that I saw one Storm Rider leading the force away from the Wind Strikers. As that one Storm Rider headed down to regroup with the rest of the ground forces, I could see the rest of the Storm Riders were following him, and soon they had retreated away from the skies. I then realized that one Storm Rider was none other than Alex. He had seen me and he directed his Pidgeot to land. Once she did, he dismounted, and then he approached us.

“The sky is a slaughterhouse.” He told me, telling me that it was time to give up, “Let’s just hope we can get through the wall before reinforcements arrive.”

“She’s gone.” I told him, letting him know why I was alone.

There was some silence, and then he looked at me seriously.

“She can’t be.” He remarked, looking somewhat sick, “No, that’s not possible...”

“Latias hit the ground like a bullet.” Randy told him, letting him know exactly what happened, “It would have been better if she just fell the entire length.”

Just before I could say anything, the Wind Strikers that were still above had begun to attack the ground force. There was nothing we could do but just continue, at least make this last tribulation worth the loss.

I found the rifle that I had dropped, and I simply picked it up and continued moving forward. I didn’t care if they attempted to open fire on me, I wanted them dead for what they had done. Never before had I known such bitterness and hatred inside of me. I just looked at them and told myself not one of them would be going home, for after this last slaughter was finished there would be no home for them. There would be no place they could retreat to for security. Just like me…

The anti-air guns were the key force in eliminating the rest of the Wind Strikers. They had crept far too close to the emplacements and ended up getting round after round of heavy caliber ammunition shot through them. Almost every single bullet had ripped in and out of the Wind Strikers, sending their bodies into the masses of our soldiers. It wasn’t long before the only thing we faced was a retreating infantry, attempting to hold back the walls for as long as they could. They were waiting for reinforcements, I could tell that’s what they were waiting for. We were going to have to beat time itself with the little that we had left…

Still, we had many ranks of soldiers and plenty of Armadillo tanks left. Once they were in firing range, we had begun to fire upon the wall. The first blasts had rocked the ground, and each of the shots were directed to a point in the wall were there were cannons above. After two sections had been blasted furiously, the walls began to crumble, taking the cannon and the soldiers above it tumbling down in the mass of rubble and dust that fell. I could only hear faint screaming from where I was standing, but I knew they were wailing as loud as they could. All I wanted was enough to be able to enter the city, and torch everything that was inside. Still, it was going to take more time, something that we were quickly running out of.

Again, the tanks had blasted again at the wall, rocking the ground with the recoil before another vast section of it had begun to crumble. Still, reloading was taking too long, and the delays between blasts were costing us serious time. We needed to have the city destroyed before any reinforcements arrived, or we might not be able to fight them off. And if I knew correctly, I could already feel they were coming from all directions. It would be hopeless if they had arrived in time to stop us. There would be no chance of escape, let alone victory…

After the tanks had ripped another hole in the wall, a large gap of at least three hundred feet had been torn from the wall, and it was then that I declared the charge. Since the pile of rubble had been too high for the tanks to cross over it, they were to stay behind until the path had been clear. The only machines that could enter the city now were the Land Splitters.

There had been a few Crimson Stars soldiers trying to prevent us from entering the city, but they had very little success. The machine gun rounds from the guns mounted on top of the Land Splitters were powerful enough to rip through flesh and bone. We then had to climb a massive pile of rubble to get beyond the wall. Everywhere around me, there were still plenty of Silver Rebellion forces left. But we were faced with a problem…

The city was so massive that it would take us forever to completely destroy it. Since we didn’t have the tanks to use, there was only one thing I could think of. If the city of Jasandax wasn’t going to crumble to the ground, then it was going to have to go up in flames. I couldn’t imagine what a city this size would look like completely on fire, but it was going to have to be done. They could stop us from attacking the city with tank shells, but they would have a hell of a time trying to extinguish a fire raging out of control. Especially if they didn’t have any water…

“We need to destroy and water pumps that you can find.” I told the troops around me, knowing I couldn’t reach the entire army.

“Why the water pumps?” One of them asked me, staring at me with an odd look in his eyes.

“Tell everyone we’re going to set the entire city on fire.” I said to them, looking at the vast amount of buildings ahead of us, “If we destroy the pumps, there’s no way they’re going to be able to put out the fire.”

Still, they were somewhat doubtful. I could tell there was something else.

“They still might have water Pokémon they can use.” One of them told me.

“Then you have no choice but to kill them.” I responded, looking into his eyes, “Do whatever it takes to make sure this city is smothered by fire. Use Inferno Grenades, Fire Pokémon or whatever. And another thing – don’t enter any buildings unless you want to cook yourself.”

I don’t know who they were, but they took forever to get the word passed around. It seemed like an hour had passed before I saw even just one building starting to burn. I had been throwing Inferno Grenades through the windows until I had completely run out of them, but that was the most I could do. I told others around me to start setting the city on fire, but either they didn’t listen or they didn’t hear me. Plus having each building made of metal didn’t exactly help the fire spread around. On top of that, I was on the last reload of my rifle. After this I was going to have to find someone else’s if I wanted to keep fighting to get out of here alive.

Thirty minutes later, we were doing a little better, and a least thirty blocks buildings were burning brightly, covering the streets and the other buildings around them with a deep red, flickering glow. The streets were very wide, so avoiding the flaming buildings wasn’t hard. Still, being out in the open was very dangerous, since there were still enemy soldiers running around. But they were very limited now.

And above all other things, I had to force civilians of the city out of their homes so we could set it on fire. I never thought once I would be inheriting such a cruelty utilized by so many war leaders before me, but I had no choice. They had to leave, or they were going to get killed. It twisted my soul to see them run away in tears, but there was no other choice.

As we moved further into the depths of the city, I began to see one building in particular stand out from the rest. It was massive, and I was shocked I hadn’t seen the building before, but now there it was, standing before us. I had a feeling that was where I wanted to go. That would be the place where it would all end…

“That has to be where Zander is.” I heard Randy say behind me.

I turned around, and I was surprised to see he had followed me this whole way. Along with him was Alex, standing only a short distance away. We were pretty much alone now. The rest of the Silver Rebellion army was behind us, slowly setting the rest of the city with consuming fire. Slowly they were drawing closer…

But so was the rest of the Crimson Stars. If we were still here when they arrived, the losses were only going to be greater. We had to press on.

“We don’t have a lot of time.” I said to the two of them, “I say we go there now, and see if we can find him.”

“Whatever it takes…” Alex said softly, looking up at the massive building.
 

~*Myuu the Ryuu*~

The epitome of grace
We're getting closer to the climax!!! If I'm right, then they will have to go to the top floor to fight Zander, right?
 

Sike Saner

Peace to the Mountain
Damn...I was worried about Randy there for a moment, and then just as he came out of that safely....there went that poor Latias. ;-; That was definitely a tragic shock.

Recent highlights:

The time for words was gone. There is always a time when mere words cannot stop the pain and suffering that one must go through because of others. There is always a time when words cannot stop the iron will of those oppressed. There is always a time when the only solution is through action, and I finally realized why war does exist…

A very powerful paragraph.

I had seen another wave of incoming fire from the Armadillos slam into the defending Crimson Stars, ripping away their machinery and blasting any infantry besides them to pieces, letting loose many unanswered cries of misery and pain.

Cool…



I'm in awe of how excellently you write scenes of warfare. It's just riveting as hell; I love it. ^^
 

Avenger Angel

Warrior of Heaven
To say the least, I've gotten really caught up on writing the sequel at PE2K. It's like... two chapters away from finally coming to the end, and I can't tell you how many times I thought it would never get done...

Thanks to whoever is still reading this, I know I haven't been exactly very religious about updating it in time and that's no one's fault but my own. I'll finish this up and I'll post the sequel here when this is done.
 

Avenger Angel

Warrior of Heaven
Chapter 47
No Answer

The three of us had run towards the tower, with a slowly burning city behind us. We knew if we killed Zander, there would at least be some way of bringing the world of Kivistal back to the way it used to be. I could already see the night was beginning to fall, but it wouldn’t be long now until the last stand of the Crimson Stars was going to take place.

Closer and closer we approached the massive tower, and I had begun to realize that one moment ago, I thought it was made of metal, but now it looked like it was made of black stone. I merely passed aside the thought and thought my eyes deceived me, but that was no big deal. It was strange, but when we arrived at the tower, there was no one even near the two heavy oak doors. We pushed them open, and once the doors moved aside, we stepped inside.

I then felt like we were in a paradox, a complete opposite of what the tower in Symarix was supposed to be. Instead of the regal looking halls with all its glorious statues, the walls were black stone, and the only light came from the candles in their crimson glass holders, casting a red, flicking glow about the room, making every shadow seem alive. I had never been so freaked out in my life.

It was strange that the exact shape and size of the room had been exactly the same as the one in Symarix. All the statues were almost like the ones in the hall, only they too were twisted and misshapen. Their expressions were gaunt and withered, and their bodies were frail and twisted. We slowly moved along the room, unable to keep our eyes off of it.

I then caught a sight that filled me with so much fear I could vomit. There it was, same shape and size, only it wasn’t the same at all. Even the marble mount had been chipped and worn from age, but it wasn’t that which scared me the most, it was what was on top of it…

There we were, Latias and I, lying on the ground dead. I could have sworn Latias’s tightly shut eyes were stunningly familiar, but then when I saw there was a bullet wound in the exact place where Latias had shot been only a few hours ago, I could have screamed with fear from the accuracy. And there I was, lying on top of her and reaching out, also dead. Only I was different…

I had been blasted with burns all over my body…

I caught sight of the tiny, dented plaque on the mount, and I couldn’t help but bend down to read it. Only after I wiped away the dust that had coated the plaque, could I read the slab of dented metal. It truly was twisted…

The battle will claim his life…

“It is prophecy…” Says the Gold Rider…


I tried to remember where exactly I had said something like that, and then I remembered it was during my battle with Vorox and Tychal. I had remembered telling him that we couldn’t fail because the prophecy said we would win. But at that point I never knew it said I would have to die because of it. Truly twisted, I never would have even mentioned the stupid prophecy at that point if I knew it would have resulted in something like this…

“Good God…” Alex replied, looking at the statue with a strange look in his eyes, “Is that what he thinks is going to happen to you?”

“He was right about Latias…” I told him, feeling sick with fear, “She was shot in the side, and her eyes were shut tight exactly the same way…”

Then, for one dark moment I heard Randy laughing. We had immediately turned toward him, and honestly I found nothing funny about it…

“Give me a break.” Randy snickered, “Does he really expect that to really happen? Come on, Juno, he instinctively put that there to freak you out. Just forget about the stupid thing, we know how to handle this guy…”

Only thing I could do was just follow Randy to the rather ugly looking elevator, which looked like it was made of crude steel with thorns reaching out of it. It looked more like a torture machine, probably used to pull people apart piece by piece. Instead of pressing a button, he lowered down a metal lever, and the massive steel cage had opened, revealing the elevator inside. All we could do was step in, and lower the lever inside. I got a sick jump in my stomach when the doors shut much more loudly than they opened, and slowly we heard the rattling of chains as we slowly made our way up.

I could only hope you’re right Randy…

We slowly headed upward, all the way to the top floor, as if the rest of the building was just solid rock that meant nothing. It had seemed to take forever, and I got a sick and twisted feeling that maybe Zander was doing something that might make this sickening elevator ride last forever. For some reason I already had the twisted feeling that he already knew we were here…

At last, we had finally arrived at the final stop of the elevator, an event I didn’t know whether to be satisfied about or to be freaked out of my mind considering what I had just seen. Regardless, we didn’t have a choice, and we didn’t come here for nothing.

There were no windows, and I couldn’t tell the difference if we were two hundred stories up in the air or five hundred miles under the ground. It was definitely a paradox, the hallway was exactly the same as the one in the Symarix tower, only the walls were pure black stone along with more candles in red holders, sending more eerie shadows dancing along the walls. Slowly, we had left the elevator and headed toward the two large doors. Both of them were made of oak, with metal pentagrams and other demonic looking designs mounted into both of them. Even the doorknobs were skulls with glowing red eyes.

“Well isn’t that a nice, warm welcome.” Alex remarked, looking at the doors.

“You’re right, Randy…” I said to him, even grabbing the doorknob without fear, “This is only meant to scare us. Other than that, it serves no purpose. It means nothing…”

I grabbed the door knob and pulled the heavy door open, and we were greeted by a sight that should have only been possible in Hell. Instead of the throne room, it was a cathedral, one obviously dedicated to pain and suffering. I could hear sickening, taunting whispers in the vapor around me. There was a faint, crimson fog in the air, and I could see there was blood dashed upon the stone walls, and an altar made of marrow and bone. Black chandeliers in the shape of a pentagram hung from the ceiling with more red, flickering candles on them. All the pews were made of black slate, and looked awfully misshapen. Along the walls were stained glass windows, with broken glass with would have been depicting scenes of suffering and madness.

In the center stood Zander, the same dark, menacing image we had remembered from several years ago. He was dressed in a black cloak, with only his head and his hands revealed. I recognized his brown hair and his overly serious expression. Besides him were a Pikachu and a Charmander, both with a lethal looking pistol drawn to each of their heads. Only thing we could do was just further step inside the cathedral devoted to pain...

“Glad you could join us, Juno.” Laughed Zander, looking at me and causing my own soul to quake, “I’m going to give you a special privilege…”

“And what’s this…?”

I could see the other Pikachu was looking directly at me, and then I felt like vomiting once I realized who exactly it was. It was Sita, the one who I thought was left behind back in the safety of Symarix…

“Juno!” Sita shouted with sickening fear.

I was furious. This had nothing to do with her, this was supposed to be between us. This was a sick, demented way of trying to get the upper hand by threatening the life of the one I loved the most…

“Damn you, Zander!” I shouted at him, completely consumed by rage “This has nothing to do with her! Leave her out of this!”

“That can always be possible…” Zander replied casually, feeling like nothing was wrong, “But then the other one has to die…”

I had looked toward the Charmander, but I didn’t realize who he was. I tried to stare into his eyes, but he didn’t look familiar.

“Who is this…?” I asked Zander, looking at the desperate Charmander.

“Why, that’s none other than your best friend David!” Shouted Zander in psychotic glee, “And today I’m giving you a choice.”

“And what choice is that!?” I shouted at him.

“You get to decide which one of them gets to die!!!”

I could have sworn the devil himself screamed those words into my head at that moment. They echoed like the memory of a nightmare made of sin and destruction. I looked into the eyes of both of them, and there was no way I could choose. I hadn’t seen David for years, and in fact I had no idea that he had even been sent into the world of Kivistal. Regardless, I still remembered who he was, and the fact we had been through so much together. To have him die here…no… I couldn’t imagine all that suffering and torment would be for nothing.

And then there was Sita, the one who I had trusted with all my heart and soul. I couldn’t deny the fact I loved her, even though I wasn’t supposed to. She had been the only one to restore my faith in the purpose of the Silver Rebellion, even when everything else had gone wrong. There was no way I could let her die, after she loved me and I loved her. I could recall the days she was at my side, by my jail cell just trying to keep in contact with me, and then the last time I saw her, just when we were leaving for the final battle, one last battle that was almost done.

It came down to one simple fact. There was no way I could ever decide, even in a million years. I couldn’t believe Zander actually expected me to make a choice here. There was no way I could decide on who to spare, and who to leave behind.

“Come on…” Zander replied, growling with anger, “Make up your mind, for my patience is quickly ending…”

“There is no way I could ever make that kind of choice.” I told Zander, letting him know I would never abandon my friends, “I’m surprised that you would even think I could.”

Then, there was a dark silence, a stillness in the air comparable to death itself. I felt a dark eerie chill in the air, and then what Zander said could have torn a soul to ribbons.

“I guess I’ll just have to decide for you…” He remarked casually.

The dark silence was then torn to pieces with the ear shattering blast from one of Zander’s handguns…
 

Sike Saner

Peace to the Mountain
Instead of the regal looking halls with all its glorious statues, the walls were black stone, and the only light came from the candles in their crimson glass holders, casting a red, flicking glow about the room, making every shadow seem alive.

…I rather like the sound of that place. o_o

Heck, I just thought that the interior of Zander's tower was cool in general. Very deliciously evil. ^^ The cathedral in particular was just wicked. ^^

And damn, the way that chapter ended there was just...Damn. o_o Seriously, wow.
 
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