Ic: Ambages appeared curious about the going-ons outside, too. He peered out the window at the orange and yellow hues, perked up at the sound of drums and horns, seemed vaguely enthralled at the idea of violence and danger that close to his face -- even as a screaming soldier clutched in the claws of a Nui-Rama buzzed by.
But in reality, beneath his professional actor's demeanor, he was enthused. This on Le-Koro was a symbol that the Xa-Koro project was a success. He couldn't risk a smile or a chuckle, not in the company of his uninitiated fellows, but he felt relief in his heart. Things were coming together very nicely. Even with the Peers on the brink of extinction, they were rising in power and influence like never before, destroying cities as they wished and sending chaos wherever they pointed.
But what was even sweeter was the understanding that while they had done so much, their plan was only a little less than half finished. The twelve Principles were all but forgotten on the island, but there were six pillars to destroy next. Then, and only then, could he claim to be halfway done.
But every passing moment was a moment closer to slaying a god, and such proximity only strengthened him.
"Tell me, you oversized lump of trash. Have you heard of the Lightning Trident technique?"
"No -- should I have?" the toa of lightning replied to Sucogu. "Because it sounds a lot like the Thousand Stars technique, you narcissistic, overglorified Mata Nuian elitist," he snarled with vindication. Lightning suddenly formed around them in little sparks that flared bright colours of blues and white, creating a dazzling display of energy that bore little actual force -- if Sucogu tried to attack things via manipulation, they would suffer nothing more than a tickle. The actual effect, however, was far more theatrical than dangerous.
In the flash of strobe energy, the toa of lightning lunged for Sucogu with his spear, taking full advantage of the disorienting lights to bewilder and befuddle Sucogu, weakening him for the meaty strike.
The rest of the mob met minimal resistance. A handful here and there were felled by snipers and mages alike, a few also losing to the rahi in the sky and the steeds of the little band of guards defending their village.
But they finally met their real resistance in the form of an invigorated Le-Koro Gukko Force. The guardsmen were far more prepared for the battle than the mob army from Xa-Koro, but the sight of firefighters and, most importantly, Kongu, did nothing to deter the army, since whittled down to forty total from their initial fifty and ten sergeants. Half of the remaining force had breached the ladders and elevators, arriving at the platforms of Le-Koro and assembling a perimeter to protect their vital arteries for the rest of the army.
Two of their sergeants were smart enough to know a high-profile target when they saw one, though: Kongu, flanked by his trusteds, moving calm as ever to his headquarter tower. His visage was illuminated by the lightstones of Le-Koro, an orange flash here and there from flames spread by rahi and torch alike doused by buckets of water wherever he trod, it seemed. The two sergeants, quick to act and ready to fight, emerged from their line of defense with a squad at their back.
It was an unlikely pairing: A Skakdi of earth and a toa of air. But they were determined to take down Kongu. They knew the battle was a lost cause; they were never supposed to win the engagement. But while they were there they were going to give as bewildering a blow to Mata Nui as they could, in the name of not only Aurelia and her fellows but for the benefit of those they were charged with: The horde of angry Xa-Koronans, bitter from their decades of persecution from the mainlanders. Kongu was a fine bullseye in the larger target, a prime selection for the fervent fighters behind the two officers.
The rest of the force not at the perimeter found themselves skirmishing with the emerging guardsmen, and the imbalance was obvious. While the sergeants were capable of holding their own with greater skill and strength than their matoran troops, the basic-trained Xa-Koronan citizen-warriors were no match for the highly specialized Le-Koro guards. It created a curious image of fighting, ragtag assemblies of hastily conscripted and drafted workers given weapons and training against a highly organized and efficient fighting machine.
Meanwhile, back at the beach, the lonely lieutenant stood on his ark's bridge with Molotov cocktail in hand, taking it upon himself to destroy whatever evidence and connection there was between his ship and the other two to the far west of his position. With a tearful eye at the frivolous but somehow necessary loss of life and limb occurring in his hometown, he threw his bottle at the boat and it flowered in flame, engulfing the bow of the ship and cutting off his escape from it.
He watched as the flames crept up from the tip through the deck, consuming the wood and metal all the same. He stood rigidly at attention while watching the fires envelop his brief command and allowed the forked tongues to engulf his person.
He didn't scream, not even an utterance, but merely thought of the shameful position he had allowed himself to be placed in. His life ended in disgrace, somehow justified by schemers from a distance. His tears did nothing to soften the heat from the fire as it cremated him as it did his ship.