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VakamaMetruNui

Legends of the Bionicle: The Vahi's Destructive Power

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So, this is the start of a new series of stories I’m doing in a Bionicle AU. I plan to be uploading stories on a fairly regular basis. This starts five years after the events of the 2003 story year however Mata Nui has not started to die yet so the events of 2006 on have not occurred. This will be looking into what might have happened if Mata Nui’s death had been postponed. Everything before the 2003 story chronologically is pretty much identical except for a few things here and there which I will point out at the appropriate times. The only other change is that there are biological familial relationships and all that entails.

One more thing, I really want to get better at writing so I’m looking for constructive criticism. So please review and give your honest feedback, even if it’s negative, it means a lot to me.

Legends of the Bionicle: The Vahi’s Destructive Power

1,005 AGC

It had been five years since the defeat of Makuta at the hands of Takanuva, Toa of Light. The Turaga had then shared the Legends of Metru Nui and the Great Rescue with the Matoran before they all returned to the City of Legends. The Turaga were reunited with Dume and the Rahaga and they all got to work rebuilding Metru Nui. It was long and hard work, Turaga Onewa estimated it might take another millennium to fully repair the damage, but all the same, they were making good progress.

Takanuva, however, was bored with rebuilding. He understood the importance of it, sure. But his heart was in adventuring. It was what led to him being exiled from Ta-Koro and becoming Chronicler, and eventually Toa of Light. And the rush of defeating Makuta in one-on-one combat? That was a feeling that couldn’t be replicated. He wanted more adventures like that. But anytime he suggested going out on some kind of quest, Vakama, or Dume, or Tahu, or someone else would shut him down. But if he didn’t do something remotely taboo soon, he was going to lose it. Takanuva had had to resort to stealing chisels from worksites just to get a taste of something close to breaking the rules.

Then a couple of days ago, Takanuva got an interesting idea, although quite foolish and one that would most likely land him in deep trouble. His kind of idea. He was going to steal the Kanohi Vahi and test it out for a few hours. What could the harm be? Sure he heard the story of Vakama losing control against his battle with Makuta and Tahu almost doing so in the Toa Nuva’s battle with the Bohrok-Kal. But Takanuva figured since he wouldn’t be fighting anyone, he would have a better time at handling the mask’s power. Besides, he had faced Makuta and won. Maybe he was stronger than Vakama and Tahu.

As night fell, Takanuva watched from behind a broken wall as Vakama left his hut and headed out for a meeting with the other Turaga. The Toa of Light waited until it was completely dark to avoid being seen by any Matoran. He opened up the door to Vakama’s hut and quickly moved inside, silently shutting the door behind him. Takanuva made a small light manifest on his index finger and began searching the walls, trying to keep it dark enough to remain unnoticed. He slid desks, bookshelves, and even the Turaga’s bed but found no sign of the Vahi.

Takanuva knew Tahu had given the Mask of Time back to Vakama so it had to be hidden somewhere in his hut. Surely he hadn’t placed it in the Coliseum for safekeeping. If so, there was little chance Takanuva could get it. Then his light caught something small: a tiny shadow on the wall where there shouldn’t be one. Takanuva examined the wall closely and realized that the wall was indented ever so slightly. It looked like it could be a secret compartment; one big enough to hold the Vahi. He searched all over and tried all variety of ways to open it, but to no avail. Maybe there was a secret switch somewhere…

His eye noticed a painting of the island of Mata Nui on the wall a bio away. Something about it seemed out of place. Takanuva removed the painting and saw a button hidden behind it. “There we go,” said the Toa as he pushed the button. The compartment slid open and indeed the Kanohi Vahi was resting inside it. Takanuva gingerly took it out and examined it. Its dull orange reflected the small amount of light from his finger and its empty eyes seemed to show him countless possibilities. This was going to be a fun night. Takanuva closed the compartment and hung the painting in place again. He placed the mask in his pack and then slung it over his shoulder. Then as stealthily as he entered, he exited Vakama’s hut and made his way to the far end of the metru.

***

Takanuva hurried down the street toward his house and flung open the door after checking to make sure the coast was clear. Once inside, he shut the door and locked it. He turned on a lightstone and anxiously took the Vahi out of his pack and removed his Avohkii. Taking a deep breath, Takanuva placed the legendary mask on his face. Immediately, he felt the overwhelming power of time course through his body. He grunted as he struggled to maintain control. It was hard, but he was pretty sure he still commanded the mask’s awesome power.

The Toa of Light spied a chisel that he had stolen from a Po-Metru worksite and picked it up before flinging it at the far wall. Concentrating, Takanuva activated the mask, slowing down time around the chisel. To his astonished eyes, the chisel was moving through the air slower. It took a full two minutes before it finally hit the ground. He experimented with other small objects, slowing down and speeding up time. He was having so much fun that he ironically lost track of time. But after an hour, he began to feel strange. It suddenly felt like the mask was starting to control him.

Takanuva tried desperately to force down the mask’s power but as hard as he tried, the mask kept fighting back. The Toa’s mind was transported backward and forward in time, simultaneously witnessing events long transpired and yet to come.

“Sometimes, my brothers, the best way, the only way, to win… is by losing.”

“Lhii. His name is Lhii.”

“Get out, Nidhiki—of my sight and of this city. Get out before I kill you.”

“I can’t believe it… after all this… it was you guys all along…”

“Now even the Great Spirit shall soon sleep!”

“Today we defeat Onarax once and for all!”

“This is my lifetime’s journey, yours lies beyond.”

“We shall call this island Nahi Nui…”

 “I am Takanuva, Toa of Light.”

“Stopped what?”

Takanuva could feel the very fabric of time ripping apart. He knew he had to regain control or risk destroying the entire universe. It took every ounce of willpower Takanuva had inside him but finally, he was able to force down the mask’s power. As soon as he did, he ripped it off his face and slammed it down on the desk, leaning on the piece of furniture to catch his breath. He waited a few tentative moments before placing the Avohkii back on his face. Everything seemed to be all right. “There,” he breathed raggedly. “I stopped it.”

“Stopped what?”

Takanuva’s body went numb as he heard another voice in the room, particularly because it was his own. He turned around quickly to see himself standing behind him, albeit a Matoran around the time he became a Toa. Takanuva was speechless for a few moments, dumbfounded by the impossibility of the situation. “What did you say?” asked Takanuva.

“I said ‘stopped what?’” Takua repeated. “I don’t remember what we were doing. In fact, I don’t really remember how I got here. I last remember searching for the Toa of Light.” Realization dawned on Takua’s face. “That’s who you are right? You’re wearing the Mask of Light. However…” Takua’s face scrunched up. “I thought I was supposed to be the Toa of Light, I could just feel it.”

“You were,” said Takanuva. “I’m sure you have a lot of questions.”

“The last thing I remember,” continued Takua, “Jaller and I were cornered at the Kini-Nui and then the Rahkshi showed up… and I was paralyzed with fear… and then Jaller jumped in and saved me… and then he died. Oh, Mata Nui, no.” Takua had to catch himself on the wall to keep himself from falling.

“No, don’t worry, Jaller’s fine!” Takanuva assured his other-self. “We found a way to bring him back to life.”

Takua breathed a sigh of relief. “Thank Mata Nui.”

“You were right, you were meant to be the Toa of Light,” said Takanuva. “You see, I am you. You’re another version of me I guess.”

“Okay,” said Takua, skeptical. “So how did that happen?”

Takanuva was going to tell Takua the truth but he couldn’t. He couldn’t admit that it was his fault. The notion that he was essentially lying to himself was not lost on him. “It was an unknown enemy,” he lied. “They unleashed some kind of time attack that led to your creation.”

“Oh, okay. Well, are we going to do something about that?”

“Uh, I think so, I actually should go talk to the Turaga about that now.”

“Okay, I’m going to go find Jaller.” Takua unlocked the door and was about to leave when Takanuva stopped him.

“It’s night now you know.”

“Oh, so it is. Then I’m just going to sleep here. Is that all right?”

“Uh, sure, you make yourself comfortable, I’m just going to go out for a little bit.” Takanuva grabbed the Vahi from his desk and shoved it in his pack before bolting for the door. He paused briefly to glance at Takua, climbing into bed. He felt an odd combination of horror and pity. He then sprinted out of his hut and back toward Vakama’s.

***

As Takanuva raced through the metru, he hoped that the damage was localized to Takua but as screams started rising up through the streets, he knew that wasn’t the case. He didn’t know how bad it was, but he couldn’t worry about that yet. Right now, he had to return the Vahi before Vakama realized it was missing. Maybe he could spin it as not being his fault. He opened Vakama’s door and hurried inside, not even bothering to shut it behind him. He reached his hand under the painting, pressed the button, opened the compartment, placed the Vahi inside, and shut it again. He let out his breath now that the deed was done. “And what Vakama doesn’t know won’t hurt him.”

“It’s too late for that, Toa of Light,” said a voice.

Takanuva looked over to his left to see Vakama deactivating his Huna. He looked more furious than Takanuva had ever seen him. He wondered if this was what the Turaga looked like when he was a Hordika. “Turaga Vakama, I’m so sorry—”

Vakama held up his hand. “Silence. Do you think apologies can fix what you’ve done?”

Tahu walked into the hut, magma swords drawn. “Takanuva, I really hoped Turaga Vakama was wrong.”

“What do you mean wrong?” asked Takanuva.

“Shortly before the time anomaly,” explained Vakama, “I had a vision of someone placing the Vahi back where it belongs. It looked like you, but like Tahu, I too hoped I was mistaken. Do you have any idea what kind of irreparable damage you’ve caused?”

“What if Tahu uses the mask?” suggested Takanuva. “Maybe he can reverse it.”

“And risk further damage to the universe?” Vakama shouted. “Absolutely not! The Mask of Time is a power that no Toa can truly wield, perhaps not even Makuta could have fully controlled its power. Any attempt to erase your mistake could lead to more havoc.”

“I’m so disappointed in you, Takanuva,” said Tahu. Those words were some of the worst Takanuva had ever heard in his life. “I thought you knew better than this. What were you thinking?”

“I don’t know, I just wanted to break the rules, like the old days, when I was a Matoran.”

“Well those days are gone,” said Tahu harshly. “You’re a Toa now and you have responsibilities. If you can’t handle that or be trusted with that power, you don’t deserve to wear that armor or that mask.”

Takanuva looked down sheepishly. “How bad is it?”

“Bad,” said Vakama. “All kinds of beings that have been long dead have started appearing through the city, who knows what’s going on in the rest of the universe. And not everyone coming back is friendly.”

Takanuva put his head in his hands and sat down in a chair. “So what do we do?”

“We’re still figuring that out,” said Tahu, finally putting his swords on his back. “We have to take care of the dangerous beings and help integrate the peaceful ones into society.”

“Please don’t tell anyone this was my fault,” Takanuva pleaded.

“So you want us to lie for you?” asked Tahu. “You think you just get to wreck the universe and claim it’s someone else’s fault?”

“I already told myself—Takua, that is, another version of myself—that it was some unknown enemy force. What’s the harm in that? It’s not naming anyone specific.”

Vakama looked at Tahu. “Fine,” said the Turaga. “Out of respect to you, we will go with that story, but if the truth comes out, we will not come to your defense.”

“Fair enough. So what do you want me to do?”

“I think you’ve done enough,” said Vakama icily. “Return home and do your best not to break anything else.”

***

As Takanuva walked sadly back to his hut, he reflected on his actions and wished the Vahi was capable of time travel so he could go back and stop himself from ever taking the mask. He had made some serious blunders in the last thousand years but this one really took the Madu fruit. He just hoped no one would end up getting hurt from all this.

The Toa of Light stopped at his door, knowing what was waiting for him inside. But there was nothing he could do about it now, just accept it and move on. He opened the door and stepped through to find Takua asleep in Takanuva’s bed. The Toa quietly shut the door and sat down in a chair, just watching his Matoran-self sleep. He was so innocent-looking, unlike Takanuva. Maybe he could be better than Takanuva. The Toa of Light vowed not to let anything happen to Takua, the Matoran was going to live a better life than Takanuva.

As for the Toa of Light, he would have to live with his mistake for the rest of his life, but he wasn’t sure how long he could live with his secret.

The End

Next Story->

Edited by VakamaMetruNui

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Library Topic ^ Credit to Llortor for the custom Nuva Symbols

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53 minutes ago, VakamaMetruNui said:

One more thing, I really want to get better at writing so I’m looking for constructive criticism. So please review and give your honest feedback, even if it’s negative, it means a lot to me.

I don't want to make any claims based on merit or experience, but I'm happy to share some general writing tips and how they apply or don't to Bionicle and/or personal writing style. Apologies in advance if any of this comes off as patronizing, and/or is much of what you've already heard. 

General Advice 1: "Don't say 'Said' too much." 
Relevant Link: 467 Ways to Avoid Saying 'Said' (Infographic)
2 Cents: It's a balance. Don't get hung up on finding the best most perfectly nuanced synonym to describe this or that utterance. Something too out-there will pull the reader from the flow of the story, may start to distract you, the writer, from your writing process, etc. 'said' is almost a filler word, and unless it's completely repetitive, monotonous writing with no variance to the cadence or rhythm of the sentences, 'said' kind of acts like a 'rest' in music would. 
Considerations for your story: You didn't seem to have a problem with this in your writing. Where there was dialogue, there was a nice combination of a) "[name] [speaking verb-ed]", and b) the dialogue preceded or followed by a separate sentence to indicate the speaker, without directly stating they'd spoken.
a)

1 hour ago, VakamaMetruNui said:

“Okay,” said Takua, skeptical. “So how did that happen?”

b)

1 hour ago, VakamaMetruNui said:

Takanuva looked down sheepishly. “How bad is it?”

The only types of places I'd be careful is falling too much into relying on the reader to follow who is saying what in a conversation exactly, and having no dialog tags whatsoever. I'm very guilty of this. Even with a direct back and forth between just two speakers, it's easy (especially scrolling on a screen as opposed to flipping a physical page) to lose track of who's speaking. I tend to think this problem isn't necessarily the shortcoming of any specific writer or reader, but just kind of being human. Anyways, here's an example of where this happened to me, I had to scroll back a bit to keep track of who was saying what. (Note: this also may have been due to the special situation of Takanuva technically talking to himself? but yeah) 

1 hour ago, VakamaMetruNui said:

Takanuva was going to tell Takua the truth but he couldn’t. He couldn’t admit that it was his fault. The notion that he was essentially lying to himself was not lost on him. “It was an unknown enemy,” he lied. “They unleashed some kind of time attack that led to your creation.”

“Oh, okay. Well, are we going to do something about that?”

“Uh, I think so, I actually should go talk to the Turaga about that now.”

“Okay, I’m going to go find Jaller.” Takua unlocked the door and was about to leave when Takanuva stopped him.

“It’s night now you know.”

“Oh, so it is. Then I’m just going to sleep here. Is that all right?”

Bioinicle-specific considerations for dialogue:  If you're going for canon-compliance, sometimes conveying facial expressions, or other para-linguistic modes of communication becomes difficult. Like, I think you had Takua being skeptical in the section where Takua and Takanuva are meeting. One way to show skepticism is a raised eyebrow. Personally, the Bionicle characters I write have 'eye-ridges', which I'd seen others use, and seems to be a nice balance between 'non-distracting' and 'accurate'. Because I don't want greasy hair follicles on everyone's Kanohi just so they can frown and be skeptical more clearly with one another. 'Audio receptors' or some substitution for 'ears' is also something I"ve had to deal with, but usually I just try to work around it when necessary.

General Advice 2: Sentence Variation

this-sentence-has-five-works.jpg.7357e6969ccc08a4ff31bfe177189b4a.jpg

(source)
2 Cents: I don't find sentence length to be something I actively think about when in the process of writing. More likely than not, especially if you're a native speaker of whatever language you're writing in (English, in this case). This also probably comes down to stylistic or narrative choices (the first being the author's choice, the second meant more to refer to the point of view the author is choosing to tell the story from). 

Before I go into relevant critique for your story for this one, I want to go over one more common writing tip I've heard throughout the years, then talk about them together. 

General Advice 3: Show, Don't Tell 
Relevant link: Writer Blog Post
At the risk of sounding too much like Thanos, I will say that, again, you need balance here. as all things should be. Too much of one? Bleh. Too much of another? Bleh. The blog post I linked to (disclaimer, it was the best resource I found after clicking through the first half-page of google results) goes into how and why the 'show, don't tell' thing shouldn't be taken literally. I know in the past, personally, I've written myself into countless corners because I took this advice too literally (but non-literally? I thought everything was better linearly, from basically one point of view, story-wise, and I'd get stuck). 

Storywise: Your entire first section, up to when Takanuva starts hearing time-warp voices, is action description. It's not bad, but I don't think a bit of variety would hurt. The first paragraph serves to set the stage, and I think you did that pretty well. From there, Takanuva on his own. So dialog back and forth (which would add variety) isn't an easy option. Talking out loud to oneself can seem gimmicky, and/or forced, and be perceived as a bit loco. There's a time and place for it, and it's a totally viable option, but I personally have trouble pulling it off, and usually choose italicized internal thoughts when given a choice. This also depends on the character themselves and the author's writing style. 
 

General Advice 4: Writing Process
2 Cents: Find what works for you, don't get too stuck on one this or a single that. I'm not sure how much of a perfectionist or nitpicker you are. If you're like me, you are. If not, bully for you. NaNoWriMo wants you to writewritewritewritewrite and don't go back to edit, just produce content, and edit after the fact (everything from spelling, grammar, and formatting nitpicks to character development, plot hole mending, etc). Some people have entire storyboards with the rising action/falling action plot diagram stuff and everything. 
Bionicle-specific: Writing within an established universe gives you a framework of constraints, which I find helpful. Choosing to write from the perspective of established characters even moreso. Using canon characters is something I avoid, purely personally, so great job with taking that on. I look forward to seeing where this leads. 

 

More about your story specifically:
Takanuva's characterization as a new Toa who has a significant victory under his belt, so his overconfidence makes sense. Don't be afraid to explore more, internally for his character, why his overconfidence led to reckless action. 

Tahu. He does seem a tad inconsistent. Take that with a grain of salt, as 1) it's been years since I've read/watched anything with Tahu in it, 2) I don't mean to reduce Tahu to just one or two stereotypes, and 3) and that this might truly just be a nitpick. Either way, hopefully going through my thought process on this will at least be helpful. 

1 hour ago, VakamaMetruNui said:

Tahu walked into the hut, magma swords drawn. “Takanuva, I really hoped Turaga Vakama was wrong.”

Here, where we first see him, he's ready for action, temper-driven, kind of like the Tahu we're canonically used to. 

1 hour ago, VakamaMetruNui said:

“I’m so disappointed in you, Takanuva,” said Tahu. Those words were some of the worst Takanuva had ever heard in his life. “I thought you knew better than this. What were you thinking?”

These are Tahu's next lines, but it kind of seems like something Vakama would be more in the position to say. I don't have enough faith in Tahu's emotional maturity, that he's able to recognize danger, react to it initially (in the first line), then simmer down to disappointment by the next line. However, I do respect the emotional impact the words are meant to have on Takanuva, and it's significant. Why did Tahu's words hurt so much? Because, as a Matoran, Takanuva had looked up to the Toa so much? Still did? Is trying to figure out his place as a Toa now? And he tried (case in point, using the Vahi) and now is being rebuked? Just some trains of thought. 

Last detail I wanted to note: 

52 minutes ago, VakamaMetruNui said:

he had faced Makuta and won

I'm not sure if this is a nod to Toa Metru Vakama's line right before he and his team were ambushed by Visorak and the horribly mutated etc. etc., but I love it! 


Anyways, I'm afraid I've about run out of steam at this point. Time travel is always fun to play with, and I hope you had and will have a great time exploring this. I'm always open to dialog more about writing and stuff. Hope this was helpful, and keep up the good work! 


(disclaimer: none of this banner art is original, I just smooshed it together in gimp. Torchic, Matau)
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Those pesky firespitters... 
Library | The Sculptors and the Smelters | The Ternion Review Topic 

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First I want to say thank you very much for taking the time to read my story. I will try to keep that stuff in mind in the future, especially about the back and forth being clearer and characterization. Someone else has told me about Tahu being off as well and I am forced to agree now that I take a second look at it. :P 

Also, I don't think that Takanuva's thought about Makuta was an intentional reference to Vakama, but I can't be 100% sure since I wrote this a year ago. However, I'm always for little references like that so I'll take it, intentional or not. :P

Anyways, thank you for reading this again, hopefully you'll read the next one as well.

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Library Topic ^ Credit to Llortor for the custom Nuva Symbols

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