[Archive] The Exiles

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[Archive] The Exiles

Post by WallyDonkey »

The Exiles, by Xeta

This is a recovery of 'The Exiles' written by Xeta on the old Cubeville forum, recovery requested by multiple players.
Note: there were several violence markers on different chapters so please take that into account should you choose to read.
Character Sheets
Name: Monoshish, Mono for short.
Personality: Calm but very secretive generally likes to avoid danger but if one of his allies needs him he can confront it.
Appearance: He wears a dark blue almost black cloth ninja suit. He has a mask that he wears most of the time. Under the mask he has brown hair brown eyes and looks war torn.
Weapons: He has a blackened long sword strapped to his back and a couple of throwing knives in his belt. He has no magic abilities since he is 100% human. He can move very swiftly and silently (because he's a ninja) some say he can make himself invisible but he really can't.
Extras: He's 14-15 years old wasn't sure what category that would go under. He also owns Monoshop which could be an undercover base of operations. and thats about it.

Name: Tacky
Personality: Playful, happy even in bad situations
Appearance: (Meh skin)
Magic: Alchemy
Extras: none

Name- TGT (short for my username)
Appearance- Short, stout, antro tanuki (like a raccoon the size of a fox with brown fur.)
Personality- He good! He optimistic! He comedic/witty! He cautious of harming nature! Much wow!
Magical Magics- Has the ability to shape shift into anyone and anything, at the cost of lacking a permanent weapon and simply copying the weapons and fighting styles of those he turns into (i.e. If I turned into Blue, I would probably utilize bombs or something)
Extras- Happens to be terrified of wolves and dogs, and refuses to live in functional home, simply lives in the forest (yeah, I copy pasted my description from Wish's novel. Don't judge!)

Name: Wish
Personality: Positive, energetic, slightly quiet and can become emotional. She is able to get serious whenever necessary.
Appearance: Cyan hair with dark turquoise eyes. Her hair is very fantasy like, with a clump of hair and the remains brushing to the right. She wears a striped T-shirt colored Dodger Blue and Pine Green, with Viridian Green denim shorts. She also wears a white over-sized jacket with black cuffs, black converse with Light Sea Green colored tongues. Topping it all off with white chains going across both sides of her shorts.
She preferably wears her hood up at all times.
Weapons: She has nothing related to magic whatsoever, but she preferably carries an ax and a pick when fighting.
Extras: Wish is very weak when it comes to battling, and prefers settling things in a peaceful manner.

Name: Appy the great
Personality: Mysterious, mischievous
Appearance: Cow that walks on two feet with a lab coat and a Christmas hat
Weapons n stuff: sets traps and always manages to avoid arrows
Extras: has a huge base (you could destroy it in the story or something, idc)

Name: Glow
Personality: Temperamental, cautious around some people, hard working, and relatively social.
Appearance: Brown hair, swamp-green eyes, a dark grey jacket with a black diamond (the shape) with a red cat eye in the centre, on the back, a dark red shirt, and dark grey sports pants.
Weapons/Magic: He carries a halberd, and an item that looks like his symbol in a 3D form that controls fire.
Extras: He has a dark and strange past.

Name: Chao
Personality: Daring, nubby, and short-tempered
Appearance: Short, green eyes, and a green hoodie
Weapons: When I'm a pikachu I have electric daggers and lightning abilities As a lucario: Aura abilities, claws, and Aura blades As a human A sword, 2 daggers, and a lightning proof vest
Extras: No memory of being able to change until first fight

Name: Cave
Appearance : Blue skinny ripped jeans, Black hoodie, leather boots,emerald green shirt, Gray eyes, and brown hair flipped on one side. Oh yeah and emerald earrings.
Personality: adventuress,Daredevil, a bit of a loner,and is quite around crowds.
Weapon: A foldable bow
Extras: She's not 100% flesh, She has a stainless steel cyborg left arm, fake skin does cover it but has some openings/scars so you can see the cyborg arm ( no idea how she got it so so just [Insert Back story here]

Name: Mia
Personality: fun, bouncy, sarcastic, goes friends with Wish if you can add that in Wink not violent
Appearance: Blonde hair and blue eyes, wears alot of leather and denim
special abilities: she can morph into a black wolf with blue ear tips
Extras: I guess she's good with a bow

Name: Girly
Personality: Shy, wary, but once she gets to know someone kind and caring. Not one to leave a friend behind. Will be violent if the situation calls for it.
Appearance: Brown hair, mostly hidden by a green hoodie because of her wolf ears, which she is sometimes made fun of about. Brown eyes. Denim jeans and black boots.
Magic: Can morph into a wolf, blend with shadows, and even a little alchemy.
Extras: Good with a bow, knife, and paperclips(picklocking).

Name: Dusk
Personality: Bubbly and cheerful most of the time, but sometimes really serious and mature (orrrr at least she tries to be, seeing as she has a hard time taking things seriously unless they are truly serious). Dusk loves helping anybody and has a strange obsession with both horses and wolves.
Appearance: Brown-gold curly hair and blue eyes. She wears purple mostly, especially her signature purple shirt with a wolf face on it.
Weapons/magic/special abilities: She can turn into a wolf when needed, but she is mostly found wielding a sword. She likes swords. Swords are fun. She's also one of the best riders in Cubeville, seeing as she rides almost as much as she walks.
Extras: Dusk almost-always has a horse with her. And she talks to it. She talks to animals a lot, though she rarely receives any form of answer. Lastly, she is always raging because her Persian cats teleport to her even when sat down, especially when she's super far away.

Name: Pink
Personality: Intelligent, quick witted, stealthy
Appearance: My skin (Half fox, half human, I guess)
Magic: Darkness, can shapeshift into a gray fluffy cat with a white paw

Name: Lore( Short For Loredana)
Personality: Series, If there's a need to be, Happy, Clumsy, Funny, Friendly, Always there for a friend, Or stranger(Nice people)
Appearance: Has A Blue Sweater on, And jeans
Magic: Shape shifts into anything
Weapons: A long gleaming iron sword, And two Short Daggers
Extra: Dangerous to enemy's

Name: Kathy
Personality: over the top, sarcastic, and sort of awkward
Appearance: Black leather jacket over a white t-shirt, jeans, blonde hair, and green eyes
Weapons/magic/special abilities: Fire staff
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WallyDonkey
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Re: [Archive] The Exiles

Post by WallyDonkey »

Prologue
Hours had passed since nightfall, but as it was once put, "the city never sleeps". Even after dark, the usual commotion never ceased. Residents ran errands, store owners went on trips to gather items for their shops, and some citizens simply enjoyed having the usual night on the town. None were curious enough, however, to pay any attention to the figure who stood on top of a tall building, watching from above.

"You have to admit," Xeta muttered to himself, "even the city has its own beauty, especially at night." Silently, he stood atop a roof, paying total attention to no part of the commotion in particular. The more he gazed, the more his mind began to wander. He and his friends had been going through some hard times together recently, and he felt the need for some peace tonight. But no matter how hard he tried, he simply couldn't take his mind off the issues at hand.

Over the past few months, several friends had been disappearing. The fact that they gave little to no farewell notice was the most intriguing element of the matter, and only served to up suspicion levels all around. To make matters worse, Ara, a close friend, had abruptly vanished without bidding farewell or leaving any note of any kind.

Something abnormal was definitely going on. They all knew Ara very well, and if she were departing, she would've taken the time to say goodbye. The same went for the other friends that had left recently. Either they left nothing behind, or a simple note was found.

Finally, Xeta decided to take his mind off the matter. We'll get to the bottom of this in due time, he thought to himself. Tearing his gaze away from the streets, he stared at the night sky. "Who am I, really?" he said out loud. "I can hardly remember anything, not even my own name... Or family. Only these vague, unclear memories that hound my mind. All I can gather from this is that I came from another time or place... But when, or where?"

Dropping his sight from the sky, he shrugged. None of that was important now. Ever since he regained consciousness almost half a year ago, he had found a purpose: with his friends. And what mattered now is that he helped them through the hardships at hand. His personal mysteries were low priority.

Suddenly, he heard his codec beep. Upon answering the call, he was greeted by a familiar voice: "We need you back at Maple Leaf Peak. We may have found a clue as to Ara's recent disappearance."

"I'm on it," Xeta replied, ending the transmission. With a heavy sigh, he began to make his way back to the mountains where Maple Leaf Peak sat peacefully.
Chapter One
The sun was rising by the time Xeta made his way to the mountains. The cool of the morning helped ease the stress of what lie ahead; the new "find" could either be the key to a source of hope, or of sorrow and pain. And everyone knew that pleasure in uncertainty was a very rare emotion, if at all existent.

After some time, he had reached the entrance to Maple Leaf Peak. While calmly strolling through the town, he once again awed at the mountain scenery. "The beauty of this place is a true gift," he said to himself. "One thing's for sure, they picked the perfect place to build this. I can't imagine how it would fit in anywhere else."

Standing outside one of the houses was Blue, a teenager who appeared to be somewhat younger than Xeta, whilst being slightly taller. He had brown hair and wore glasses, a red jacket, and jeans. Upon seeing Xeta approaching, he waved. After the two friends greeted each other, Blue explained the situation.

"We found a note on the floor inside Ara's house... It appears to be a rushed farewell of some sort." Blue opened the door to the house, and Xeta followed him in. Inside the house stood another figure: a younger girl named Wish. She had cyan hair with dark turquoise eyes, and wore a blue-green striped T-shirt and green denim shorts, with a white jacket on top. The three of them stood in the room, examining the note on the floor.

It read: "I'm sorry to leave on such short notice, but the current circumstances are beyond my control. I'll miss you all."

"That's definitely not like her," Xeta said softly.

"I know, and that's what concerns me the most," Blue replied.

"Maybe she was being kidnapped and only had time to leave a brief note?" Wish suggested.

"That's a fair possibility," Xeta said, "but... I'd imagine the note would be... Different. This implies that she's leaving, and not being hunted... Or anything of the sort."

"You're right," Wish replied, shaking her head. "But I know that she'd give a proper farewell, rather than simply leaving a note."

Blue agreed with what Wish said. "It's just not like her to simply disappear on us..."

"We'll have to keep digging into this for the next few days... So, what's your plan for today, Blue?" Xeta asked.

"I'm thinking about expanding the town soon... So today, we'll have to travel back to the city and buy some supplies."

"Oh boy..." Xeta said, sounding exhausted. "Just what I need... Another long walk. By the way, I'm starving. When's breakfast?"

"Pfft! Breakfast?! It isn't even noon yet!" Blue said, sarcastically.

"You and your late breakfasts are gonna be the death of me one day... You know that, right?"

"I was kidding, Xeta," Blue said, chuckling. "Okay... I'll make breakfast for us. You and Wish go tend to the animals, all right?"

"No worries, we'll see to it that they're properly taken care of. Right, Wish?"

"Mhm!" Wish replied enthusiastically.
Chapter Two
After finishing breakfast and making preparations, the three set out on a walk back to the city, a trip that would take them several hours. Along the way, they talked, laughed, and exchanged recent stories.

By late afternoon, they had reached their destination. The city was especially crowded at this time of day, with crowds gathering at shops to get their share of goods in.

"Now... Let's find a decent place with building supplies," Blue said to the other two. "Ohhh... Looks like this shop surfaced recently. Let's take a look."

"Monoshop" was a relatively new shop run by a person who went by the name "Monoshish", although he was usually referred to as "Mono".

The three visitors entered the shop and were greeted by Mono. He appeared to be only slightly younger than Xeta, although he mostly looked and acted mature. He had brown hair and eyes, and wore casual clothing.

What Xeta realized, however, is that Mono appeared somewhat scarred and war-torn, and since he didn't seem too much like a warrior, this intrigued him greatly.

"May I help you guys with something?" Mono asked.

"We were wondering if you sold hardware and related supplies?" Blue asked Mono.

"Yes. Follow me." Mono said to Blue.

Mono led the three of them into an elevator and descended to a lower floor. It appeared to be a hardware warehouse, of some sort.

"We have supplies here," Mono said, "simply state the specified amounts and material types, and I'll give you the cost and have the supplies delivered... Where exactly?"

"Maple Leaf Peak," Blue said.

"Okay... I can do that."

After Blue gave Mono details on the hardware needed, Mono gave him the pricing.

"Don't worry," Xeta said, jokingly, "he's literally got no more space left in that wallet of his."

"Hush, child," Blue said, hiding a smile. Every time Blue said this to him, Xeta found it ironic because he was actually older than Blue was. But he went with it anyway.

"I'll see to it that the delivery is made within the next few days. Thank you for stopping by," Mono said.

"See you around!" Blue said, and waved as he exited the building.

While walking back through the streets, the three heard commotion and bells going off. Rushing onto the scene, they found that several stores were being held up by criminals.

"Hands up!" Xeta shouted. Instantly, heads turned towards him.

"Yeah? Or what?" one of the thieves said in a husky voice.

Xeta unsheathed his katana and pointed it towards them, and said, in a hard tone, "Take a wild guess."

Before he could do anything more, a ninja in a dark blue cloth suit dropped from a building onto the street. Almost instantly, he dashed at the thieves and threw a series of rapid kicks and punches, knocking them unconscious.

"Pathetic," he said in a thick tone. "And to think that you actually thought you could hold up a few stores with such resilience..."

Who... That voice... It sounds... Oddly familiar... , Xeta said subconsciously. When he looked back... the ninja was gone.

"Looks like the situation has been taken care of," Blue said. "Let's head back to Maple Leaf Peak and I'll make us some late dinner. Then we'll head off."

"Sounds good, but," Xeta said, "after dinner, I'll head back to my place. I feel the need for a night to myself."
Chapter Three
Xeta's home was basically a dug-out area underneath a pond in the forest outside Maple Leaf Peak, furnished like a house to a certain extent. There was a tile floor and smooth stone walls, with a multi-purpose main room that contained furniture, a storage room, and a bedroom with a fireplace in the wall. Basic living quarters, yet the simplicity was enjoyable.

The dinner the friends had that night was delicious, especially after such a long day. This threw Xeta into a very calm and relaxed mood, and the urge to fall asleep was hard to resist.

Apparently, Xeta wasn't the only one in need of a night to himself. Blue was taking a walk through the forests and once again managed to trip over the trapdoor that went down to Xeta's place.

Blue descended the ladder and opened the door to the main room. He saw Xeta lying across his couch with his earphones in, apparently deep in thought while listening to music.

"That intense dubstep passion may kill you one of these days, Xeta," Blue muttered, shaking his head. "Just saying."

"Well, you know what they say," Xeta said, sitting up. "Best to go out with a bang. Or, in this case, a drop. Anyway, is there a reason you're here? Something you wanted to talk to me about?"

"Actually, yes. You see... Do you remember anything about your past? Any family or friends you may have had?"

"No... I may have told you, but I can only pull out vague memories. I don't remember anything about family or friends... Oddly enough, however, I seem to recall a brother... That's it."

"Any idea as to who he is... Or was, anyway?"

"Possibly... But I'm afraid this is beyond my knowledge."

"I see... However, it appears that the 'amnesia' isn't totally beyond repair. We'll have to see how things turn out."

"I guess... But I'm really not that concerned in this area. I have enough going on in life right now."

"You have a point. Also, there's something I wanted to know."

"Go ahead..."

"When I muttered while walking into here... I couldn't have been talking loud enough for you to hear me over your music. If that's the case... Then how did you hear what I was saying?"

"I don't know what you're talking about... I didn't do anything unusual. I just heard you."

"How odd... Normally, people wouldn't be able to hear much over music like that. Also... I'm pretty tired, mind if I spend the night here?"

"Sure. Top bunk is free. Just remember, I'm on the bottom, so if you snore or make noises, I can easily kick you."

"Ooookay... I'll keep that in mind, thanks."
Chapter Four
Suddenly, Xeta awoke.

There was no noise, no movement. Nothing that would naturally interrupt his sleep. But this was more than natural. He had been alerted by some form of sixth sense.

"Blue... Wake up."

"Huh... Why..." Blue muttered, rubbing his eyes groggily.

"There's no time to ask questions. Just follow my lead, fast."

The two of them ascended the ladder and made a mad dash through the forest. Once Maple Leaf Peak was in sight, Xeta's codec beeped. It was Wish.

"I need you back at Maple Leaf Peak, fast. I'm being chased down by some cloaked figure."

"Knew it!" Xeta snapped, angrily. "Come on... We don't have much time."

Upon reaching the northwest wall, Xeta swiftly scaled it and swung over the ledge.

"So that's how you always get in here..." Blue said.

"Indeed. Now move it!"

The two rushed to the central tower and found Wish cornered against the wall, being approached by a figure wearing a dark cloak.

"You're next..." he muttered in a deep voice.

Suddenly, he received a hard kick to the back, sending him crashing into the wall. He slowly got up and turned his hooded face towards his attacker.

"You! Wait, you're not... Who are you?"

"I could easily ask the same question."

Xeta drew his katana and prepared to lunge at the intruder, but before he could do anything more, another similarly-cloaked figure dive-kicked at Wish's former attacker from the floor at the top of the tower.

This time, the intruder blocked the attack and knocked the other person out of the air. He fell to the ground rolling, but was unbroken. Standing back up, he shouted, "Can't you die right?!" and drew two katanas, both slightly shorter than the one Xeta used.

They were too caught up in the intensity of it all, however, to realize that the katana-wielding figure was almost exactly the same size as Xeta... And had a similar voice.

The two jumped onto different ends of the inner tower wall, and ascended while slashing at each other; the intruder with daggers, and the defender with katanas. The vicious process persisted until they reached the floor at the top.

Once up, they locked weapons together and struggled. They then jumped back and put away their weapons, switching to hand-to-hand.

The two of them brutally punched and kicked each other, until finally, the defender tried to knock out the other's legs. He gracefully jumped far back off the tower.

"We're not done yet," the remaining figure said angrily. Holding up his hand, he levitated the intruder in mid-jump and pulled him back, shouting, "Get over here!!". Once close enough, he impaled him with one of his katanas.

Shocked and groaning in pain, he stood there, bleeding. The defender then removed the blade and kicked him off the edge, sending him plummeting to the ground below, screaming.

He then jumped off the platform. Ejecting spikes from his boots, he landed on the intruder's chest.

He let out a long screech of agony as blood pooled in the grass beneath him. The defender pulled his feet from his chest and stood over him.

"You fool... You have accomplished nothing... I am IMMORTAL!!" the defeated figure shouted in a demented voice as he slowly levitated, then sent a pulse of purple electricity around him, and vanished.

The defender shouted in pain as he received the surge for a few seconds. Afterwards, he stood there panting, dropped to his knees, and collapsed.
Chapter Five
It was an hour or so after dawn when the strange figure regained consciousness. He awoke to find himself lying on a bed in Mossy's house, while the others sat in the room, discussing current matters. His weapons had been set on a nearby table, and he still wore his cloak, although the hood was down. He had long charcoal-black hair, aqua blue eyes, and a slightly lighter skin tone than Xeta.

Mossy had returned from a trip very early that morning, not long after the battle that had taken place past midnight. She was given an enthusiastic greeting and was informed about the events that had taken place within the past few days.

She was mostly curious as to why these two mysterious figures happened to be fighting in Maple Leaf Peak. However, Blue explained that Wish was being stalked... And that the warrior who had fallen unconscious was obviously on their side. And thus, they decided to help him.

They heard noise in his direction and looked over to see him awake, swinging his legs over the bedside. He groaned and closed his eyes as he suddenly realized how much his head ached.

"Oh... You're awake." Blue said. "By the way, we owe you for saving Wish back there."

"It's not a problem," the mysterious figure said, and shrugged.

"Tell me... What is your name?" Xeta asked him.

"My warrior code is Xemasu. However, you may call me Kaz."

"Tell me then, Kaz," Blue asked, "Who exactly were you fighting?"

"Someone you never want to run into," he replied gravely. "I spent the past few months trying to track him down, and I still wasn't able to kill him this time."

After his last statement, Mossy walked back into the room. She had dark brown hair and eyes, a white shirt and brown trousers, and spoke with a moderate British accent.

"Breakfast is ready," she told them.

"If you'll excuse me," Kaz added, "I must be heading out. None of us will be safe until I end him."

"Would you mind staying for breakfast?" Mossy asked. "I'd imagine you're hungry after last night."

"I suppose breakfast would be good..." he said quietly. "I'll join you, then."

After breakfast, Kaz took his weapons from the table and bid them farewell.
Chapter Six
The rest of the week went by rather smoothly. The supplies that had been ordered came in, and they began town expansion.

One day this changed, however. Xeta, Blue, Wish, and Mossy were eating lunch, when Xeta's codec beeped.

"Oh great," he said, irritated. "What now?" Reluctantly, he answered the call.

"Hello. I'm in need of your assistance," an unfamiliar man's voice said.

"Excuse me? I don't believe we've met."

"Nor do I. I'm Pike."

"And why exactly does a legendary colonel happen to be calling me during lunch?"

"Oh believe me, this'll be worth your time. Please switch your codec to output mode. Those with you need to receive this transmission as well."

"Done."

"This is Pike. Last night, our spies discovered a terrorist group based in an abandoned research lab in the mountains far south. They've been developing numerous biological weapons and are planning to make ultimatums once they're finished."

"Mind telling me what they're planning on doing with these 'weapons'?"

"We don't know for sure. From the information we gathered, they're in the final stages, meaning you have roughly 2 days before they start making threats."

"And why exactly are you calling me to handle this? Don't you have more experienced men you could send in?"

"Indeed I do. But, consider this a test in itself. I want to see what you and your friends are capable of."

"If you insist. Don't worry, I won't disappoint you, Colonel."

"I would certainly hope not. Remember, many lives are at stake. Don't blow it. I'm sending helicopters to your area now to take you to the location once you've made preparations. If you're in need of assistance, contact me and I'll send Kacer in with a squad of tanks and several experienced recruits."

"Kacer, huh? Sounds good to me. Okay, I'll gather everyone up and leave once ready." "Best of luck," Pike said, and ended the transmission.

They sat in silence for several minutes, contemplating the message.

"Well," Mossy finally said, "I'll contact several of our acquaintances."

"Good. Meanwhile, Blue and I will see if we can get a certain someone to join us," Xeta said, gazing up at the lab that rested by one of the mountain peaks...
Chapter Seven
Blue and Xeta followed the mountain trail up to the HyTex lab that rested by the peak. A good friend named Hylian lived there and developed technology for the Maple Leaf Peak residents. They knocked, and Hylian answered the door.

He appeared to be an anthropomorphic fox being who wore a black leather jacket and jeans, along with goggles.

"And what can I do for you two today?" he asked casually.

"We recieved a message from Pike," Xeta said, "explaining-"

"Wait... Pike? As in, the legendary colonel?" Hylian interrupted.

"Indeed," Blue nodded. "Now, if Xeta may continue?"

"Of course."

"As I was saying," Xeta continued, "terrorists have set up base in an abandoned lab, and Pike wants us to take them out."

"Terrorists, huh?" Hylian muttered, shaking his head. "They never quit, do they? Might I ask, where exactly is this 'lab'?"

"We don't know for sure, but Pike sent helicopters our way to take us outside their base. Once finished, they're planning on making threats with several biological weapons."

"Classic. Of course, something about this seems too... Cliché, to say the least. I've read about several conspiracies similar to this that took place several decades ago, all of which failed. You'd think they would have gotten more creative by now..."

"I understand what you mean," Xeta said in agreement, "but it's still a legitimate threat, stale or not. Anyway, we wanted to ask if you were interested in tagging along on this one."

"I don't see why not. After all," Hylian said with a slightly menacing grin, "I also produce weapons. Come inside and check things out, might as well arm yourselves with whatever possible."

"Sounds good to me," Blue murmured, following the two inside.
Chapter Eight
Hylian took Blue and Xeta down to the armory in his lab.

"I'm assuming Xeta has instructed some of you in basic martial arts," Hylian said, "meaning you could potentially hold up in the event that fighting goes on. But it would be ignorant not to arm yourselves."

They looked around at the arsenal of weapons on the armory walls. Of course, Xeta was already skilled with the katana he usually carried. But he decided to bring a sidearm, in case things became complicated.

"I've trained with these," Xeta muttered, taking a set of throwing knives. "Might as well put them to good use."

Meanwhile, Blue was inspecting all the choices available. Of course he had received combat training, but he usually never carried around a specific weapon. The situation hardly ever called for it, after all.

"I... I can't choose," he said, slightly overwhelmed.

"I think I may have a good one for you, Blue," Hylian said, leading him across the room. He held up some type of rod and handed it to Blue.

"What exactly is this?" Blue asked.

"It's a plasma staff. The end could either be used as a blade, or to fire plasma shots."

"A very efficient multi-purpose weapon," Xeta cut in. "I have to say, I'm almost jealous."

"Well you should be," Blue returned.

"Okay... Let's take some weapons down to Maple Leaf Peak, for those who aren't already armed," Hylian told the two of them.

They then exited the lab and headed back down the mountain trail, bringing a small arsenal with them.
Chapter Nine
Silently, the dark figure stalked his prey. When the time was right, he released the string on the bow, followed by the "whizz-THWACK" sound of an arrow burying itself in its victim's hide.

"Another one bites the dust," the figure murmured, examining the kill.

The rest of the day had been filled with nothing but waiting. Waiting for everyone to arrive at Maple Leaf Peak. It probably wouldn't be until morning, so Xeta finally decided to go hunting after nightfall.

Xeta liked to hunt. He enjoyed the thrill of stalking his prey and striking with precision, and this practice did much to hone his skills. He had taken a bow and ventured into the pine forests west of HyTex.

After hunting for an hour or so, he stumbled upon an open shrine of some sort. Intrigued, he walked onto the stone platform and observed the white marble stone in the center. Engraved in it were the words "Numquam Dediscor".

Underneath these words was, in smaller letters, a translation: "Never forgot", complete with the signature of a name that was all too familiar: Aralynn.

Upon reading that name, he was flooded with memories. Memories of all the good times spent with their old friend. All the good laughs, projects worked on, late nights spent hanging out, and, of course, Ara and Xeta's constant arguments about music genres, many of which resulted in him being slapped.

He could still feel the slap even now. Of course it was painful, yet somewhat gratifying at the same time. It was this slap that defined many dear memories.

Blue usually tried not to let it show, but he was rather torn by her absence. Xeta lifted his sight to the night sky, and said out loud: "Whatever freak of nature did this, will be punished. I'll find you if it takes every last ounce of my strength and soul, this I swear."

Silently, he exited the shrine and vanished silently into the forest. He continued the hunt until an hour or so after midnight, when he returned to Maple Leaf Peak and went to sleep in an unoccupied cabin.
Chapter Ten
By late morning, all the contacts had arrived. Very soon, Xeta thought, they'd all be thrown into enemy territory - and there was no guarantee of survival.

However, during the course of the night, Xeta had come up with an interesting idea to share with Blue. In total, there were now eight people being sent on this mission; it was decided that they would go in two groups of four. Xeta would lead the first group, and Blue's group would follow to provide backup after the first had infiltrated.

Before they left, however, several announcements needed to be made. Xeta and Blue stood on a platform and called everyone over to listen.

"Remember, we are heading into dangerous territory; survival is not guaranteed," Blue said.

"Plus," Xeta added, "these are terrorists we're dealing with, and as you all know, terrorists don't play nice. If captured, you may be brutally tortured or killed. If anyone here decides not to come, we will respect your decision."

The group remained silent for several seconds, then Wish replied, "We're all in this together. Stay close to each other, and we'll make it through without any unnecessary deaths."

"Not to mention," Hylian said, leaning against a tree, "I'm also trained as a field medic. If anyone falls, I'll tend to their injuries."

"A valuable asset to have with us," Xeta said, nodding in approval. "So, we've formulated an entry plan: I will lead three of you into their base. Once inside, I'll contact Blue, and he will depart with another three and cause a diversion, making stealth easier for us. If needed, we'll contact Kacer and he'll roll in with the big guns. As for those who are coming with me, I've already decided: Tacky, Cave, and Kathy. The rest of you, stay here with Blue until we contact him. Or, if he happens to lose contact with me. Mossy is in charge of navigation and communications; Pike sent her schematics of the entire facility, so she can guide us anywhere."

Suddenly, two helicopters flew above them and proceeded to land nearby.

"And now, if everyone is ready?" Xeta asked, and was met with a chorus of agreement.

Xeta, Tacky, Cave, and Kathy took their weapons and stepped into the first helicopter as it lifted off into the distance...
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Re: [Archive] The Exiles

Post by WallyDonkey »

Chapter Eleven
Several hours later, the helicopter flew over the mountains, well away from their destination in order to avoid detection by the enemy. Slowly, it descended into the snow beneath them, and the group of four dropped onto the snow-covered ledge, ready to face the dangers that lie ahead.

Tacky was a slightly slim figure with pale skin, white hair, red eyes, and goggles. He wore a brown tunic with a jean jacket on top, and possessed the power of alchemy, along with a large broadsword on his back.

Kathy was a female with blonde hair and green eyes, who wore a white shirt, a black leather jacket, and jeans. As a weapon, she wielded a fire staff.

Cave, another female, had brown hair, gray eyes, and emerald earrings. She wore a black hoodie, skinny ripped jeans, and leather boots. Her weapon was a foldable bow.

Once the helicopter flew off, Xeta made contact with Mossy.

"This is Xeta. We're in."

"Excellent," Mossy replied. "Enemy territory is a few miles away, so you'll have to walk from here on out. As Blue explained, once in, make further contact with me. I'll send him in."

"Roger," Xeta replied, ending the transmission.

The four walked through the mountains for twenty minutes, until the facility was in sight.

But Xeta noticed something: this wasn't merely a research facility. It was a compound of many facilities, which seemed to include hangars for tanks and helicopters.

They scanned the area for several minutes, and once the guards on outside patrol left their post to switch positions, they made for the base.

They got no further than ten feet, however, when they heard a shout from the surrounding snow-covered rocks:

"Freeze!"

Suddenly, roughly fifteen soldiers obviously working for the terrorists emerged, pointing their weapons at the crew of four.

"Dang," Xeta muttered. "It's like they knew we were coming..."

"Drop your weapons," one of the enemies said, "and we may spare your lives."

They reached for their weapons, ready to drop them into the snow. However, once Xeta laid hand on the hilt of his katana, he drew at lightning speed and stabbed the nearest guard. He fell to the ground, the snow beneath him growing ominously dark red.

After the initial strike, the other three drew their weapons and began to attack. Xeta and Tacky rapidly hacked and slashed the enemy wih their swords, while Cave fired shots from her bow, while Kathy used her staff to light the shots as they flew. They easily killed ten of their fifteen attackers, and the five that remained started to worry that they couldn't stop the intruders.

However, others must have heard the commotion, and reinforcements came rushing onto the scene.

"Well, screw stealth, looks like we're gonna have to fight our way through from here on out," Tacky said, irritated.

"Don't stop fighting," Xeta muttered, out of the guards' range of hearing. "Even if we die or get taken hostage, Mossy will know once our comms are deactivated. Then Blue, and if it comes down to it, Kacer, will come in and take care of things."

They continued killing the guards and appeared to be winning, until Tacky was shot in the arm by a hidden sniper.

"What the-" Xeta shouted, and was cut off by another round that took him in the leg. He fell to the ground, unable to walk due to the extreme pain.

The guards took advantage of the incapacitated swordsmen and rushed on Cave and Kathy. Kathy then used her staff and engulfed a group of them in flames, followed by screams of agony and the smell of scorching flesh.

The invisible sniper then took Kathy in the foot, and Cave in the right shoulder.

The obvious leader of the platoon then walked into the site of the carnage, examining the wounded intruders. He then grabbed the near-unconscious figure of Xeta by the neck, saying:

"You fought well, but I'm afraid it's over now."

Afterwards, he threw Xeta off the nearby cliff and watched him plummet to his demise.

"Good riddance," he muttered as he watched the dark figure disappear into the fog below.

Once this was over, he bound the three incapacitated figures and tossed them into the back of a cargo truck he had called in, and drove them back to the facility compound.
Chapter Twelve
"No..." Mossy whispered, silently bursting into tears. "It's all wrong."

"What is it?" Blue asked, walking towards her.

"Tacky, Cave, and Kathy went unconscious, each after surges of pain."

"And Xeta?"

Mossy shook her head. "His life reading went silent, after a similar pain spike and period of unconsciousness."

"Xeta..." Blue muttered, closing his eyes.

The codecs used were able to detect life force readings and nervous conditions of the user. Mossy knew they were in trouble once everybody started fighting and watched the readings surge. And of course, if someone died: things would go silent.

"Well," Blue said, with a newly-formed determination in his voice and glare, "Looks like it's my turn. I'll go share the news and prepare everyone for an assault. In fact, I might as well call Kacer after the launch. We'll be needing him."

"One thing," Mossy said.

"Yes?"

"Xeta has been sent on several stealth missions of this caliber in the past. Things shouldn't have ended this way."

"You're right. It's not like him to simply fail like this... Unless we've been had, and this mission is more than it's cracked up to be."

"Given the situation, you might as well brace for that possibility," Mossy said quietly.

Blue walked into the open, calling Hylian, Wish, and Mia.

"The stealth mission has failed," he said to the three of them. "Tacky, Cave, and Kathy were presumably taken hostage, and from what we know... Xeta was killed."

The finality in those last three words shocked everyone, even Blue.

"But... How?" Mia asked, her face pale.

Blue shook his head and inhaled. "I wish we knew," he said, sounding mildly torn.

Hylian closed his eyes and sighed. "He seemed like he knew what he was doing... It's not like him to just die out like that. Maybe his codec was lost or broken?"

"That may be the case... But apparently, the other three still have theirs, so it's safe to assume he's dead. Whatever the situation, we apparently have to launch an assault. After we take off, I'll call Kacer. We'll need as much force as we can get."

The four boarded a nearby helicopter that had been waiting for hours, and lifted off into the late afternoon sun...
Chapter Thirteen
Slowly, Xeta regained consciousness, opening his eyes to find himself in an unfamiliar place. He was lying on a bed in one out of a small system of caves, furnished similarly to a home. Instantly, this reminded him of his own living quarters.

But he wasn't alone. Sitting and apparently studying a book in the same room was a girl who appeared almost his age, and somewhat shorter. Her hair was medium-length, singed black with blue at the tips. She wore a striped long-sleeve shirt and shorts, with a necklace bearing a purple spade.

However, she wasn't completely human. Her skin appeared somewhat reptilian, and she had retractible claws, wings, a tail, pointed ears, and amber eyes. Nonetheless, her expression seemed overall friendly.

"Oh... You're awake now," she said, standing up. "Tell me, what is your name?"

"I don't know for sure," Xeta said, carefully swinging his legs over the bedside. "But everyone calls me Xeta."

"Nice name," she said. "I'm Miz."

Xeta nodded, and slowly tried standing, only to feel sharp pain in his left leg. He grunted, and looked down at his thigh. There was a large blood stain in his jeans, and he felt bandaging underneath.

"Oh, you took a nasty hit in your leg. Walking may be difficult."

"So I've noticed," Xeta replied.

"Don't worry, I applied some medicine to the wound. The pain should greatly decrease within the next few hours."

"Good to know," Xeta said, grinning. "Also, I'm assuming you saved my life back there?"

"Yes," Miz said. "Within the past few weeks, I had found out about this nearby base, apparently being operated by terrorists... Or something. Anyway, I've been spying on their operations from the outside for some time now, but today, some of the soldiers were engaged in battle with four intruders, one of which was you. I watched as all of you were gunned down by a sniper, and when you were thrown off the cliff, I flew beneath the fog and caught you before you landed. But you had fallen unconscious during the fall, so I brought you back here and treated the wound in your thigh."

"I see... Well, thank you. Also, the three that were with me... Do you know what happened to them?"

"I don't know, but I'd assume they were taken back to base and imprisoned."

Out of habit, Xeta tried to use his codec to contact Mossy, but realized it was missing.

"Well... There is a bright side to this."

"And what would that be?"

"Our codecs detect our life signals, and since I apparently lost mine, everyone probably thinks I'm dead, due to the absence of a signal... Giving me an advantage."

Miz slowly nodded. "And if everyone thinks you were killed, they'll never see you coming."

"Meaning this time, I'll actually be able to infiltrate."

"I've studied their base, I can help," Miz said, almost excitedly.

"Fine by me," Xeta said in approval. "After all, if it weren't for you, I'd be dead. I owe you."

"Okay then! We'll set out in an hour or so, once the pain in your leg decreases."
Chapter Fourteen
After the truck had returned, the three prisoners were dragged to the detention facility, where they were each unbound and locked in small solitary confinement cells, all adjacent to one another in a narrow hall.

As for their weapons, they had been taken after the fight and placed in a locker somewhere in the detention block until it was decided what was to be done with them.

"Keep watch over the prisoners while I go give a status report," the aforementioned platoon leader said to one of the guards. "We'll interrogate them once given orders. For now, just make sure they don't try to pull any stunts."

The guard saluted, and once the officer walked away, muttered under his breath, "Not that they actually could do anything..."

After leaving the cells, he made his way through corridors between facilities to reach the central command room. Upon entry, he saluted the commander and began to give the status report.

The leader of the terrorists was a young man named Exter, who wore a a tattered red scarf and eclectic pieces of battered armor, gathered from dead warriors who had dared oppose him. He had brown hair, a scarred face, and wore a patch over his left eye. He wore two pistols on his thighs, along with a heavy blade strapped to his back. He turned to face the officer upon his entry.

"Sir, three of the intruders have been taken into captivity."

"Yeah?" Exter replied densely. "What about the fourth one? There WERE four, weren't there?"

"Yes, reports say it was Xeta, and that he was leading them."

"I don't care who this kid was. All I want to know is what happened to him."

"He's dead, sir. By my own hand. I personally threw him off a cliff."

"And you witnessed his death wih your own eyes?"

"No, sir. He fell below the fog, I couldn't see-"

"Well then, he could still be alive for all I know!"

"But sir, let's be reasonable. There's no way he could've survived the fall."

"Not that I expect someone of your class to understand this, but warriors like us don't die so easily. Despite the fact that we WERE able to ambush them, it'll take more to kill him. I won't believe your claims until you bring me his corpse."

"Yes, sir. I'll bring a search party with me, and we'll scour the crevice."

"Lord Exter!" another voice cut in. "Helicopter on radar, and they don't seem focused on stealth."

"So," Exter said softly with a menacing grin, "they must be stupid if they're doing this again, considering what happened last time. Send in five helicopters to attack them! And while you're at it, ready my Black Wolf! If these pilots aren't competent enough to take them out, then I'll just have to finish them myself."

"Yes sir," the soldier replied, and rushed off to deliver the orders.

Exter returned his gaze to the aforementioned officer.

"Well? Go find him! I want proof that he's dead!"

He quickly saluted and hurried off.

Please note: this chapter isn't meant to be anything offensive to Exter, I just thought he'd make a neat villain character.
Chapter Fifteen
Finally, the compound entered the sight of the second party. Each member had set out with a fiery determination: to rescue the hostages and avenge their dead friend.

Not even a minute after entering enemy airspace, the squad of helicopters was dispatched to repel the intruders.

"Oh great," Hylian said, rolling his eyes. "That's eight of them, versus us - which would be one."

"Well," Blue replied, "Theirs seem to be slightly weaker models. We just have to outmaneuver them and strike whenever possible."

"We'll make it, we have to..." Wish muttered. "Everyone else depends on it."

"Kacer shouldn't be that far behind us," Mia cut in. "He'll flipping crush them, I know it!"

"Here they come!" Hylian shouted.

The eight enemy craft all formed up and opened rapid fire on the intruders. Quickly, their target pulled up and countered their fire with several missiles, downing two of them. After the initial strike, the lone craft sprayed bullets at a single enemy, blowing it out of the sky.

"Three down already?" Hylian said, obviously surprised. "Dang, Pike trains his pilots well."

"Indeed he does," Blue added in approval. "Hopefully we'll be able to outlast the other five."

The remaining five craft formed up again, but this time, simultaneously fired missiles, desperate to destroy the intruders.

"Uh oh," Blue exclained in shock at the sudden turn of events. But their pilot was indeed very skillful, and opened fire whilst circling the missiles, exploding them. Once the threat was disabled, he launched three missiles, each hitting their respective targets.

Determined to complete their mission, the last two flew side by side and fired everything they had. Once again, the skillful pilot evaded most of their rounds with a series of maneuvers, taking minimal damage. He then ended the battle with two final missiles.

The entire crew was then swept up in wild relief, amazed that they were still flying. However, Blue began to feel very uneasy, anticipating the fact that things were about to become much harder.
Chapter Sixteen
Upon reaching the compound, Xeta and Miz watched the eight helicopters take off after a lone intruding helicopter.

"Oh great, that's probably Blue and the others..." Xeta muttered.

"Eight helicopters against them?" Miz asked, surprised. "I don't think they'll make it..."

"We can only hope..."

The two of them watched the intense air battle, amazed at how their pilot was able to down all eight enemies while hardly taking a scratch.

"That initial strike should have them distracted," Xeta pointed out. "Come on, let's use the time they bought us to infiltrate."

Many of the soldiers were rushing onto the field, taking positions in case a ground strike was imminent. Which meant that the hangar was apparently vacant.

They both rushed into the hangar, scanning the area to make sure that no guards were present.

"Looks good," Xeta muttered. "Now, we just have to find an entry poi-"

His voice was cut off as the door to the hangar opened and two figures walked in, apparently in the middle of conversation.

"Hurry, get down!" Xeta whispered, and the two of them ducked behind several large crates.

Peeking out of their cover, Xeta was able to get a view on the interlopers. The first was the aforementioned terrorist leader, Exter, and the second was a calm figure in a white cloak, complete with a hood shading the face. Across his back was a large sniper rifle. The two stopped in front of a large, black helicopter, and turned to face each other.

"Exter..." Xeta said quietly. "I had a feeling he was behind this."

"And who's that other person?" Miz asked.

"I'll bet he hired a sniper to take out any intruders. He's the one who incapacitated me and my squad."

"Considering the wound he gave you, that must be a nasty rifle."

"Yeah. Maybe I can pick up bits of their conversation."

"You did well taking out the intruders," Exter said to the sniper. "It's hard to find good, disciplined warriors-for-hire like you nowadays."

"It's always up to me to back up the inferiors," the quiet sniper replied.

"Now, I'm not stupid. I know there's a trick behind this assault. They're creating a diversion to allow a stealthy infiltration, I know it. So, it's up to you to keep out any pests while we handle this."

"I'm on it," the sniper said, nodding. He then turned and exited the hangar to patrol the outskirts of the compound.

Exter then hopped into the cockpit of the large black helicopter, and took off, ready to crush the intruders.

"Chances are, the corridors inside the door will be guarded," Xeta said. "In that case, we'll just have to find another entry."

"But Xeta," Miz retorted, "your friends are about to be blown out of the sky. There's no way they'll survive the attack!"

"I don't like it either, but Blue is doing his part of the mission. And besides, we have powerful allies ready to assist us, and chances are, Blue already called them in. Once here, they'll pound these scumbags into the ground."

"If you say so..."

Xeta then searched the hangar and found an open vent

"Classic entry point. Let's go."

The two then crawled into the cold, dark depths of the ventilation shaft, anticipating the dangers ahead.
Chapter Seventeen
Blue realized his suspicions were correct as he watched the large black helicopter approach.

"It's not over yet..." Hylian muttered. "And chances are, we won't make it through."

"Where's Kacer when you need him?!" Blue groaned.

Suddenly, a familiar voice cut in on their speakers:

"Hello, insects. The pest control is here to put you out of your misery! I'll enjoy watching you crash and burn to the ground."

"Exter!" Hylian snapped.

"Wait, you know who this person is?" Blue asked, intrigued.

"Indeed," Hylian returned. "A while back, Xeta and I hunted down and fought him, though he managed to escape. He's a former general in Pike's army, having gone rogue."

Suddenly, the voice cut back in:

"Starting to feel scared? Good. Now DIE!"

The enemy helicopter then opened fire, sending a merciless stream of bullets at the intruders, which they just barely managed to dodge. In the process, they were grazed by the fire, rattling the craft.

"HOLY FLIP-that thing hits HARD!" Mia shouted in shock.

Blue quickly opened contact with Kacer via contact:

"Kacer!"

"Blue, I'm almost there. Can't you just be patient for a little longer?"

"There's no time to be patient! Exter is attacking us with that monster he calls a helicopter!"

"Exter, huh? I'll take care of that kid, no worries. I'm almost to your location, just try to hold out a little longer!" Kacer said, ending the transmission.

"Taste THIS!" Exter shouted, and fired eight missiles at his target.

Their pilot circled and fired at the missiles, and was able to take out six. But the last two escaped his fire and hit their helicopter with a vicious explosion.

"Dang..." Blue murmured in shock. "Looks like we may not make it after all..."

"Well, see y'all in the next life," Hylian said as he opened the door and climbed on top of the smoking craft.

"Hylian! Are you insane?!" Blue shouted.

"Of course I am!" Hylian yelled. "What else did you think I was?"

"The afterlife welcomes you all!" Exter shouted, firing one last missile at the burning helicopter to finish it.

But Hylian had a plan of his own. Once the missile was close enough, he jumped off the top of the helicopter and onto the missile, steering it away. He then guided it back around towards Exter and jumped off, sending the missile into the black beast of a helicopter.

The missile then exploded, stuttering the craft.

Unghh... How cunning of you," Exter grunted. "But your sacrifice is in vain! Prepare to meet your fate!"

Suddenly, a large black and red helicopter, similar to Exter's, approached the fray. The skull and cross-bones symbol on the craft instantly identified it as Kacer. Behind him was seen a squad of sixteen smaller helicopters, and on the ground, twenty tanks rolled in, led by a larger tank with a similar red and black paint job.

Alyx, Kacer's assistant and apparent leader of the tank squad, then contacted Blue via codec:

"Did you miss us?"

"Alyx! I'm so glad you're here."

"Your friend Hylian is safe. We were able to save him from the fall."

"Thanks. We owe you guys big time."

Exter was shocked by Kacer's appearance.

"Do what you can to save these puny insects, Kacer!" he shouted. "They're mine!"

"Not on my watch, boy," Kacer returned, and opened fire on Exter's vehicle.

Blue's codec beeped yet again; this time, Kacer was contacting him.

"Blue! I've got Exter, it's best you land safely."

"Got it."

Their pilot then proceeded to land the vehicle, taking care to land behind the squad of tanks for the sake of cover.

"It's not over yet!" Exter shouted, and fired a missile at the helicopter as it landed.

"Quick, jump for it!" Blue shouted, as the crew escaped the burning craft, just before the explosion.

"That was tense," Wish muttered under her breath.

"Now, let's group with Alyx and the others," Blue said.
Chapter Seventeen
"So, Miz?" Xeta asked. "Any idea where the detention complex is located?"

"Yeah," Miz replied. "Once we pass through here, there's a joint corridor that leads there. But I've also heard of some sort of underground passage, perhaps that would be safer?"

"Yeah. But even with the diversion, I'm sure some of their soldiers were assigned specifically to guard duties. Don't get careless."

They continued to crawl through the ventilation shaft until reaching a dead end, with a vent cover to the side. Xeta opened it, and quickly scanned the room for guards.

"All clear," he whispered. "Let's go."

They crawled out of the vent, and made their way down the hallway. Once at the end, Xeta peered around the corner, and nodded as no guards were in sight.

Apparently, they had just entered the barracks, though they appeared vacant due to the current assault. However, as they proceeded through the hall, a lone guard happened to be on patrol and caught sight of them. Quickly, he drew his weapon and aimed it at the intruders.

"Freeze!" he shouted.

Xeta drew his katana at lightning speed, startling the guard. Quickly, he lunged, stabbing the blade through his stomach.

The guard fell to the ground with a shriek of pain, with blood slowly staining the floor.

Unfortunately, several other guards heard the commotion and rushed onto the scene.

"You!" one of them shouted. "Drop your weapon, and we'll take you in alive."

To Miz's surprise, Xeta slowly set his blade on the floor. But he was only faking his surrender; he knew Miz was armed with a hidden weapon: retractible claws.

He slowly backed away, and whispered in Miz's ear: "Strike with your claws."

She nodded in understanding, and waited for the guards to approach them. Once close enough, she quickly stabbed one of them with her claws, causing him to fall to the floor with a scream.

Xeta took advantage of the distraction and grabbed his blade, then quickly slashed the nearest guard across the torso. Spinning around, he pulled out a throwing knife and sent it spinning into another guard's chest. Meanwhile, Miz grabbed another guard by the neck and choked him, then tossed him onto the ground and finished him with her claws.

"Nice work," Xeta said, panting. "Now, we'd better hide the bodies. I'd rather we not raise any alarms."

"And the blood?"

"Well, there's nothing we can do about that... But it wouldn't be nearly as obvious."

They dragged the bodies and hit them in nearby lockers, then made their towards the joint corridor.

"So," Miz began, "if we were to take the corridor, it would lead us to the armory, which is probably under heavy surveillance. But if we head down this flight of stairs, we'll enter a passage that cuts directly to the detention cells."

Once down the stairs, they found themselves in a large tunnel, seemingly free of surveillance, with another flight of stairs at the end.

As they began to walk, Miz broke the silence.

"You know, you really seem like you know what you're doing."

"Well, I've been hired to go on several missions like this in the past."

"Hired?"

"Yeah. But I don't care much for the reward. I simply want to rid the world of these scumbags who try to gain power by threats."

"Who exactly are you, anyway?"

"I wish I knew... I have no idea where I came from, or who I even am. But it doesn't matter much to me."

As they continued along, Xeta suddenly acted out of reflex.

"Get down!" he shouted, and pushed Miz aside, taking a sniper round to his side.

"Go..." he groaned, and sank to the floor in agony.

The familiar sniper then emerged from his hiding place, followed by several guards.

"Exter was a fool to leave this place unguarded," he said as he walked down the tunnel towards Miz. "But, even the best of us make mistakes."

Once he was close enough, she quickly lunged at him with her claws; but he dodged and grabbed her by the wrists. One of the guards then came and bound her.

Xeta watched in pain and horror as Miz was bound and dragged towards the end of the tunnel, while he lay on the ground clutching his side, until he lost consciousness shortly afterwards.
Chapter Nineteen
Blue and the others ran to the lead tank and met up with Alyx. They were relieved to find Hylian alive and well; however, they were shocked upon seeing a familiar character in the corner of the small cabin inside the tank: a ninja in a dark cloth suit with a long black sword on his back.

"You..." Blue began. "I remember you!"

The ninja stepped forward and removed his mask, revealing his identity: he was Mono, the shopkeeper they had met up with on their recent errand.

"Pleasure meeting you here, Blue," Mono said, shaking his hand.

Beside him stood a figure with a dark gray jacket, a dark red shirt, and gray sports pants. On the back of his jacket was a black diamond-shaped emblem with a red cat's eye in the center. He had brown hair and swamp-green eyes.

"Might I ask who you are?" Blue said to the unfamiliar figure.

"You can call me Glow," he said, shaking Blue's hand.

"These are two freelance warriors we recently recruited," Alyx explained. "Now, we're about to come ripping right through their ranks. Everyone ready?"

She was met with a chorus of agreement, and then sent the signal for all tanks in the squad to attack.

Meanwhile, in the sky, Kacer was slowly tearing Exter's Black Wolf apart, while hardly taking any damage himself. Finally, he sent a missile that landed a critical blow to the craft, sending it crashing downward. After watching the craft explode, he sent a message to the entire tank squad:

"Exter's craft is down! Everyone, smash through their defenses!"

His message was met with cries of fiery determination as the tanks charged the enemy. Shortly, heavy gunfire and explosions ensued. Some of Alyx's tank jockeys were even daring enough to crush the enemy tanks by ramming into them; this tactic was met with surprising success. Though they were fewer than their opponents, their tanks were superior models. It was almost certain they'd make it, but not without some carnage.

After several minutes, Kacer flew onto the scene and launched several missiles, destroying a few tanks. He then sprayed gunfire at a single target, lighting it on fire.

Inside the main tank, Alyx began to explain the infiltration process.

"Their base is essentially a large compound," she said. "Most facilities are connected to one another with sets of corridors. Be warned, however, that the interior is most likely on high alert. I can almost guarantee you'll make contact with the enemy. Mono and Glow have already volunteered, anyone else?"

After brief discussion among Blue, Hylian, Wish, and Mia, it was decided who would be sent in.

"Hylian and I will go in," Blue said. "Wish and Mia have decided to remain here."

Wish, due to her much more docile personality, would rather not get involved in large amounts of violence. Mia, being Wish's close friend, was reluctant to part with her. That, plus the fact that she naturally made a better sniper than warrior.

Within five minutes afterwards, the enemy's defenses had been broken. Glow, Mono, Blue, and Hylian seized the opportunity and entered the enemy compound within the midst of the chaos.
Chapter Twenty
Xeta's slowly opened his eyes and observed his surroundings, groaning in pain. He appeared to be lying on the floor inside a small, dark cell, with a small window on the door.

He began to get up, but abruptly stopped upon receiving a pain spike in his side. The would had been treated and bandaged to prevent fatality. They must want me alive for some reason, he thought to himself.

But his concerns rapidly shifted to a much more important matter. What happened to Miz? Last he remembered, she was being dragged off...

Suddenly, he was overcome with horror as he came to a shocking realization.

She's not fully human... who knows what kind of sick tests and experiments they'll perform with her?

He slowly hung his head, defeated, and buried his face, sobbing silently for several minutes.

I've failed you all... whatever happened to Ara, I wasn't able to prevent it. And I was almost too late to save Wish. Now Miz is in the hands of deranged terrorists, and there's nothing I can do.

Suddenly he heard a strangely familiar and eerily calm voice in his head, one that sounded almost like his own.

I know you're better than this. You've made it through worse yourself; you're perfectly capable of the situation at hand. I know that your confidence is shaken because the lives of friends are at stake, but don't let it cloud your judgement. Think this through clearly, and you'll find a way to escape and save her. There's still time... don't give up hope.

"Who..." Xeta muttered as he lifted his head and glanced around the small room. In any case, he decided, it wasn't important. He knew what he needed to do.

Now, how to get out of here?

A guard was his only was out of the cell. In his current wounded state, trying to fight any guards was out of the question. In that case, he'd have to outwit the guards. He examined the door, and noticed that there was a small area beside it out of the window's view. That was it! If he could remain there while a guard came to check the cell, he could escape and lock the door behind him.

He then heard a guard approaching in the hall and realized his opportunity had come. He hid beside the door and waited for the guard to glance in. An almost comical grunt of surprise was heard as he found the room to be vacant, and he opened the door and walked in, glancing around the room.

Almost instantly, Xeta darted through the open door and closed it shut behind him; he also took the precaution of sealing the window shut. Now, he just had to find Miz. The ventilation shaft went most places in the detention block, making it the best method of travel. He opened the vent cover in the hall and climbed in.
Chapter Twenty-One
Once in, the overall tension seemed to decrease. More soldiers than expected were required on the field, due to the unexpected power of Kacer's strike force. This was no reason, however, for anyone to let their guard down; it would be a fatal error for the enemy to leave their territory unguarded.

"Now, hopefully, we can find the detention block with little interferance," Blue said to the others.

"Careful with your words, Blue," Mono replied. "You never know what might set them off."

"And if we are ambushed, we'll be ready," Blue added, reassuringly. "Now, Hylian, I'm assuming you'll look after those in need of medical care?"

"Absolutely," Hylian returned, waving casually.

They continued on through the fortress, and surprisingly, received no contact from the enemy. However, upon reaching the entrance to the detention block, the door suddenly locked, and a shout was heard behind them:

"Freeze!"

Turning around, a stern white-cloaked figure was stood in front of a squad of elite guards.

"You have done well by making it this far," he said in an almost eerie tone, "but I'm afraid your mission has come to an end."

"Who are you?" Glow inquired, in an equally calm tone.

"That, my friend, is none of your concern. Now, I'd love to stay and chat, but I have a new prisoner to attend to. This one proves to be an interesting specimen..."

"It can't be..." Hylian muttered in a surprised tone.

"Now then, finish them off!" he ordered, walking away. The guards then raised their guns and prepared to open fire.

Before this happened, however, Hylian reached for the ice staff on his back and lunged forward, impaling the nearest guard with the frozen blade. Mono followed the initial attack by drawing his black blade and slashing another guard across the torso.

Blue activated the plasma staff he carried and fired several shots at the enemy, surprised with the ease of use the weapon provided.

Recovering from the shock of the initial attack, the enemy began opening fire on the intruders. Glow suddenly dashed forwards with dual blades drawn and rapidly parried the shots. He then sheathed one of his swords and pulled out an unfamiliar crystal-like object. Suddenly, his sword ignited, and he leapt towards the enemy, tearing through them all with his fiery blade.

"Pathetic," Glow said with mild contempt, gazing down at the scattered, burning corpses.

"That was some show of force," Blue said in awe, clearly shaken by the sheer skill and ferocity displayed by this mysterious warrior.

"Now then," Hylian interrupted, "shall we get going? We don't have forever."

"Since when were you in charge?" Blue shot back.

"Rank really means nothing," Hylian returned. "Ultimately, it's up to the people who are actually willing to push forward."

"Okay then, cut the sass already," Blue replied, sounding exasperated.
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