Posted Feb 29 2012 - 02:25 AM
The noble Toa and the evil Makuta. Two sects of the world that time and circumstance had warped into mortal enemies instead of understanding companions. That was the way the system worked, the most basic fact ingrained in our minds forever. The Makuta were ignorant, hate-filled monsters that lived to kill, steal, and destroy. If ever killing was justified, it was for the sake of purging the antidermic demons from our lands. Still, I refused to kill: only to isolate, subdue, and disable. As I tracked the lone Makuta to his abode that night I did not think twice about my motives. I was a Toa, the most noble and honourable of all creatures. What I did was unquestionably right as one who had sworn allegiance to the Great Spirit Mata Nui. I ran across the rooftops, swiftly diving in and out of transport chutes, easily gaining ground over my target. I dropped silently to a crouch over an alley where I knew his route took him daily. I pressed myself against the cold stone roof and took in a deep breath. The Makuta, in the garb of a simple Matoran merchant, came down the alley only seconds later, humming a tune with a carefree lilt. I had my knife at the ready as he passed beneath me, and I dropped onto his back like a specter. I had underestimated my opponent, however, and he shook me off and whirled around, jagged claws tearing through his false Matoran skin. “Toa!” he growled. He spread his legs apart and held his hands in a defensive position in front of his body. I clenched the knife tighter and cracked the hilt, frustrated at myself for not calculating my attack angle more precisely. He should have been paralyzed, an easy target. Id I didn’t keep him down now he would escape, and it would be years before I found him again. I equipped my Kakama and lunged forwards. The monster sidestepped my attack as swiftly as I had launched it and has one claw around my throat instantly. He threw me to the ground, wrenching my left arm across my back with a loud snap. He advanced towards me, and then paused. “You could have killed me, guardian. Why did you attack as though a coward?” I pulled myself up as best I could and reached for my knife. “Toa don’t kill.” He smiled and my stomach rolled. “Neither do I. Let me tell you a secret, Toa. The Makuta have been living here for years. All we’ve wanted to do is to fit in and make a living.” “Mahi dung,” I spat. “You’re all the mindless servants of the Dark Lord Makuta.” The diminutive figure seemed genuinely taken aback. He relaxed and retracted his claws into his tattered gauntlets. “Is that so? I suppose you believe that the Toa are the selfless protectors of the Matoran world as well. Have you ever heard the story of Toa Tuyet?” I frowned. I hadn’t heard the story, but the name was familiar. What did she do? My fingers wrapped around the knife and the thought left my mind instantly. I stood up and thrust the knife towards the Pakari-clad figure. “Surrender, fiend,” I growled. The Makuta raised his hands. “Or what?” “Or I’ll kill you.” The words slipped out before I had the chance to stop them. A grin split his lips and a ray of insight seemed to cross his eyes. “You all like to think you’re the heroes of light. You’re the ones who can do no wrong, whose very actions are incarnated in stone for the weak-minded matoran to worship. If only they knew that you all have a dark side, just as we have a light side. Even the Great Makuta was once Mata Nui’s brother.” “Blasphemy! Be silent before I cut out your throat!” My hands were beginning to shake. We couldn’t be the enemy; all we did was for the good of Mata Nui– “No, now I see,” he continued. “We’re two sides of the same coin, don’t you think? Good and evil. Antidermis and protodermis. But we were once the same. “No!” I shouted. My words echoed across the alley. “Mata Nui would not have created us from the same foul material!” “You continue to spout your trite propaganda even against one who was once of the same breed. From dust we came, and to dust we shall return, isn’t that right?” The Makuta took a step closer and leaned in. “Tell me, Toa. The law was created to prevent you from killing unjustly. Is it so just to take another being's life based on your own ignorance?” “I don’t kill!” “No, but you would if given the chance. Be honest. You’re not afraid to kill, are you?” My entire body was shaking. The knife slipped from my grasp with a clatter. “You’re afraid you would enjoy it. You’re afraid that once you got your first taste of blood, there would be nothing to stop you from becoming like us.” His eyes flashed. There was no malice in his tone, but I couldn’t keep the terror from my mind. I felt my back press against the cold stone wall. My legs couldn’t support me. “Let me do you a favour then, selfless hero.” He scooped up the knife and twirled it slowly in his fingers. “Remember what you will, but we’re not so different.” With his final word the blade gleamed as he plunged it into his own throat. He wavered for a second or two as the light in his eyes dimmed and his heartlight thumped one last time, and he slowly crumpled to the ground. I stood for a moment in shock, not knowing what to feel. I stumbled out of the alley, sick and queasy. Tears streamed down my face as I ran through the dark city streets without heed to my direction. I tried to block out the look in his eves as the knife sank into his flesh. A look of not the rage and senseless murder we had been conditioned to see, but a look of compassion and of pity. We were nothing but different species in a universe that, in another time, would have saw us as brothers. That day the ignorant philosophy of so many heroes died within me. The Toa no longer seemed quite so noble, and the Makuta no longer so evil.Had this idea a couple nights ago. Idea is done to death but I wanted to make it for myself. Wrote it in a couple hours and did a bit of proofreading before posting. I'm pretty satisfied. Leave a comment if you enjoyed it!