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L S O 2012 - Team Four


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14 replies to this topic

#1 Offline Hahli Husky

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Posted Jul 08 2012 - 05:14 PM

DO NOT POST HERE UNLESS YOU ARE ON THIS TEAM AND IT IS YOUR TURN TO WRITE.Thank you. Posted Image Review topic here!This is where Team Four of the Library Summer Olympics 2012 will be posting their story. If you guys come up with a team name and/or story title, PM me and I can edit it into the topic name for you.In this event, entrants will be required to do the following:- Work with a team to write a BIONICLE-themed epic based on a given prompt. Each prompt will be the first sentence from a popular book (that happen to own XP), and can be found below.ScheduleRemember that each team member can post once every 24 hours, creating a cap of 5 chapters per 24 hour period. The chapters can be as long or short as you like. Members will be posting in this order:What?Grant-Sud RisesBallomThe Smoke MonsterToa OnaraxNOTE: Although Team Four has one extra writer, please don't worry or feel that it's unfair. I strictly judge each entrant and carefully assemble teams so that no team has a higher advantage than another.Please try to let me know if you won't be able to post for more than 2 days' time! If there's an emergency and you are unable to notify me first, that's all right.The topics will be closing July 25th, 2012 at roughly 11:59 PM PDT. If the server is out, the deadline will be delayed accordingly.Team Four's Prompt:(lifted from The Amber Spyglass by Philip Pullman)In a valley shaded with rhododendrons, close to the snow line, where a stream milky with meltwater splashed and where dove and linnets flew among the immense pines, lay a cave, half-hidden by the crag above and the stiff heavy leaves that clustered below.Now continue the story as you please, and have fun! :)

Edited by Hahli Husky, Jul 26 2012 - 12:55 PM.

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#2 Offline What?

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Posted Jul 09 2012 - 03:53 PM

Chapter I: Outside the Cave In a valley shaded with rhododendrons, close to the snow line, where a stream milky with meltwater splashed and where dove and linnets flew among the immense pines, lay a cave, half-hidden by the crag above and the stiff heavy leaves that clustered below. It was unfortunate for the idyllic scene that something in the cave exploded with a fair to middling sized boom. The resulting silence was all the heavier for the brief and violent sound. This chronicle does not deal with the philosophical question of a subjective reality*, for someone had heard the sound of the explosion. He had been inside the cave, and at least most of him remained inside still. Even if he is in multiple parts. *I refer, of course, to the classic question every sapient being eventually poses itself: If a cave explodes and nobody hears it, does it make a sound? Kodan paused in his chronicling. He scratched his head and put away his scribing materials. One can transcribe only so much from afar. Eventually the observer must become involved to fully observe. Besides, it was getting dark and he didn't like writing by lightstone or candlelight. He would have to go into the cave. Spelunking (of the explosive variety) was fairly low down on his list of enjoyed activities – right under writing cramp, though it was above being accidentally stepped on – but he was dedicated. He was a professional. Probably that was why he had been picked for the job, for he wasn't particularly skilled at recording events. Often he was in exactly the wrong spot to observe the important events. Turaga Dume once said (with a nasty look on his face) that if Metru Nui ever blew up, he would bet his position that Kodan would be elsewhere, probably recording the daily life of an Ussal crab. But he was going in anyway. It wasn't because he liked chronicling, because he didn't. He did not much care for his own turn of phrase. His handwriting was almost illegible even to himself. But the person in that cave was a friend of his. Or had been. The least he could do would be to transcribe his demise. It was a surprisingly vague situation. Kodan had received a message from his friend about two months ago. Since then, he had been traveling to reach the point specified in the message. But at least he was sure the message was from his friend. Almost sure, Kodan amended to himself. Being strictly honest is an important part of being Chronicler. So say he was mostly certain he was almost sure. It hadn't seemed like a message his friend would have sent, but Kodan hadn't seen his friend for many years. On the flip side, why would anyone else have sent the message? He wasn't really an important person. Very few people ever actually read his chronicles at all. He didn't have a lot of enemies who would set a trap for him. Kodan thought for a second, racking up his past experiences in his mind. No, he decided. There couldn't possibly be more than a couple hundred of enemies. If he narrowed it down to beings with a mortal grudge, it was probably somewhere between a dozen and twenty-six. Not too many. Be that as it may, he had accepted the situation at face value and was climbing down the cliff wall. Reaching the entrance, he paused for awhile. This was not because he was thinking of the best way to fake his own death, though that was something he often wondered about. It was because of the giant, inconsistent tracks of Something that had recently entered the cave. Kodan had quite a lot of experience in reading tracks, or spooring, as the professionals called it. This was not like anything he had seen before. No, that wasn't exactly right. It did remind him of something, but he couldn't think what it was. He wasn't even sure if what it reminded him of was an animal, an idea, a substance... Ah, well, Kodan thought. It's probably not very important anyway. He squared his shoulders (incidentally hurting his back) and strode into the cave, the feeble lightstone he held barely illuminating the ceiling. If it is important, he thought, I'll probably remember. It isn't anything to worry about.After all, what could possibly go wrong in a cave?

Edited by What?, Jul 09 2012 - 03:54 PM.

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A graduate student at Trinity/Computed the square of infinity.\But it gave him the fidgets/To put down the digits,\So he dropped math and took up divinity.

#3 Offline Grant-Sud

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Posted Jul 11 2012 - 12:45 AM

Chapter 2: Written in StoneHe regretted his words before. Because what could happen while inside a cave – more specifically, what could happen to a chronicler who wandered into such cave – was … anything.Well, not anything. Some things that he imagined could happen to him while in the cave were impossible, but just a few. Kodan continued to walk, having decided to dwell on what things couldn’t happen to him while he was in the cave. The light from his stone shown very dimly, and his steps were taken slow and steady. He knew he was nervous, and often over examined things when he was so.The opening had all but disappeared now as he had ventured quite far onto the straight path. It didn’t seem like the cave was too special; just ordinary. The markings on the walls, “markings” which were cracks and clipped edges from the explosion’s force were the only abnormal things here.Well, he was also an abnormal piece in this normal cave. But that was beside the point.And at that moment he fell, skidding down a large slope that he hadn’t been able to see coming.The small Matoran rolled and tumbled, and he dropped his lightstone on the way down. Reaching out with his arms, he hit the dirt and rocks over and over with his outstretched limbs, trying to slow his fall. Eventually he hit the soft and sandy ground, front first. He hadn’t expected sand as his location on the outside was nowhere near a desert or beach.Shaking his mask, slowly rising his head up, he took notice of the lightstone he had dropped, which had fallen a few yards ahead of him. Right beside it, he could see, was another path, circular in shape, almost too perfect in form. The insides didn’t seem to be crumbled or affected by the previous explosion at all.Turning over on his back, he glanced back up the slope seeing nothing but darkness like the night sky with no stars. Right at the start of the slope though, were those same tracks he had seen. They seemed completely at ease with the slope’s steepness, and hadn’t lost their shape as whatever it was descended. The slope seemed indented and smooth, as though something had reshaped it recently.The blast, Kodan thought. Glancing back toward the new passage, he figured whatever had caused that explosion must have come from in there, as the walls were smooth and durable, like a … cannon.He got up, and moved to retrieve his lightstone. There, he found another light source on his darkened journey, but of the metaphorical kind.Surprised, he slowly picked up his light to raise it high up, right at the entrance of the new passage to examine his new discovery. At the top, scribbled in the Matoran Language but clearly written nonetheless, was one unblemished name.KodanHe backed away, slightly unnerved, wondering if his friend had inscribed this only days ago, or months … or had it been here for years? The name was written in stone and also seemed invincibly undisturbed, withstanding whatever had hit it earlier.Confused, unsure of whether to be afraid or curious – but was probably both, Kodan took his steps into the tunnel before him. This, he concluded, was a string of events he hadn’t believed could happen to him in a cave. And further, he had just been proven wrong.

Edited by Grant-Sud Rises, Jul 17 2012 - 10:06 AM.

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#4 Online Ballom

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Posted Jul 11 2012 - 08:43 PM

Chapter III: Hidden DepthsKodan’s footsteps echoed slightly against the smooth floor of the passage as he continued into the deep gloom of the cave, only able to see a few bio away from him. As he continued, the texture of the walls remained the same — smooth curves, wrapping around to form a perfectly circular tube. He paused, puzzled, rubbing his free hand along the nearest portion. It certainly seemed like the regular solid protodermis encountered across the universe. Yet, in the illumination of his lightstone, he saw no marring, no evidence of a tool. Kodan shook his head in wonder and a little bewilderment, before resuming his trek deeper into the cave.His situation was becoming even more bizarre than he had thought. Never mind the fact that he had been called to a strange valley on the Southern Continent by a message from an old Ko-Matoran friend, whose message had contained the first words not about the Knowledge Towers Kodan had ever heard from the scholar. Never mind that the valley had been the site of a currently unexplained detonation, within the cave. No, what most bothered the Po-Matoran Chronicler was the passage he was walking through, which appeared to inexplicably be carved better than the best masterpiece of the Sculpture Fields. That, and he had yet to find any trace of his poor friend’s remains. So he kept walking, in hope of finding answers.Eventually, he realized the cave was narrowing. Just as it slowly led deeper into the earth, the diameter of the passage was slowly shrinking — a passage that had begun five or six bio in diameter had been cut to half that. Then, the end of the passage tapered into an end.It was strewn with rubble. Chunks of various materials were piled haphazardly upon each other, including what appeared to be the wreckage of a tiny airship, with the protosteel plates curved like fragments of a Rahi’s eggshell. Furrowing his brow, Kodan walked around the largest of these splintered sections.“What in Mata Nui’s name?” he asked to himself.To his great surprise, a voice answered.“That, my friend, I’m afraid I can divulge,” wheezed a voice behind him. Kodan whirled, and for the first time saw a gaunt Matoran leaning against a piece of the wreckage. He was a Fe-Matoran, a short specimen in ancient-looking burnt orange armor that bore numerous scores across it. One in particular was a gouge over his chest, no doubt the source of his hoarse voice.“What happened, to you, and to this?” asked Kodan, gesturing around him.“I am one of the Nynrah Ghosts,” the Fe-Matoran began. “Hear my tale, Kodan.”“Several years ago, a group of my fellow crafters and I were contacted by the Brotherhood of the Makuta. They wanted us to build functioning replicas of the Bohrok — to be used as a counter to the actual swarms, they claimed. We painstakingly built these Bohrok replicas, and created a great number. When they were almost complete, we learned of the true plan for these Bohrok: they were to be used as weapons by the Brotherhood, against the Matoran.”“Knowing this, we sabotaged our creations. When we gave them to the Makuta, these were only weak shells, unable to inflict harm as the Brotherhood intended. But the Makuta learned of our treachery, as we had learned of theirs. They sent many Dark Hunters after us, and my entire group was killed. I only barely escaped, faking my death using industrial machinery. Knowing I was not safe on Nynrah, I eventually made my way to this valley.”“Here, in this cave, I made preparations. The Dark Hunters and the Brotherhood must have realized I did not die on Nynrah, and doubtless are scouring the universe for me. It was not safe to leave for long, or to send out a warning, so I sent for the Matoran I knew could help me your friend, the scholar. With his knowledge of Metru Nui technology, and my materials from Nynrah, we spent much time building a small rocket-powered airship in the cave. Using it, we could return to Metru Nui, with our warning to Turaga Dume, avoiding my pursuers.”“The cave was carved as a launch shaft for it, and we prepped for launch. However, when we were almost out of the cave, a fuel line malfunctioned. It ignited, and our ship was destroyed in the ensuing explosion. Your friend was killed, and I only barely survived. Wounded in many places, and unable to make the journey, I had to find another Matoran to help me.”“From the scholar, I had heard of his friends on Metru Nui. Many were well-known, but among them was an obscure little Chronicler — you, Kodan.”“Knowing it was my last chance to reach Matoran outside of this valley, I sent a message to Metru Nui, under your friend’s name, gambling you would believe it. For months I waited, spending my time carefully pulling the ruins of our ship back into the depths, to cover my trail further. For months I have been here in silence, praying to Mata Nui.”The Fe-Matoran’s eyes were pleading. “Kodan, you must get to Metru Nui. Warn Dume and the Toa, as I cannot. Tell them of the Makuta, and what they plan.”Kodan attempted to swallow, but his throat was terribly dry. His chest felt like it was under a massive weight, being crushed by the mountains of earth and ice piled over the cave. This was a task for a Toa, not a mere Chronicler, and a bad one at that. But before a request like this, how could he refuse? How could he resign the fate of his race to enslavement, or worse?His voice quavering, barely above a whisper, Kodan heard himself answer.“Yes.”

Edited by Ballom, Jul 18 2012 - 01:07 AM.

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#5 Offline Toa Smoke Monster

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Posted Jul 12 2012 - 03:05 PM

Chapter 4

Kodan took a step back, trying to take in everything the Fe-Matoran had just told him without fainting from shock. He took deep breaths, trying to keep from getting light headed. Minutes ago, he had been thinking about events that couldn't happen to him in a cave, simply because they would be impossible for them to happen. As he thought about it now, his current predicament probably wouldn't fit on that list of events. But it still left him surprised and a little horrified.His friend, whom he hadn't talked to in years but still considered to be close to, was said to be dead. That alone should've caused him to brake down in sadness. But that wasn't all. Both the Brotherhood of Makuta and the Dark Hunters were not only looking for this Fe-Matoran, they also intended to harm the residents of Metru Nui as well.Normally, he would've ran to the nearest Toa or Vahki and told them all he had just learned. But there were no Toa or Vahki here (none that he knew of, anyway), so it would be up to him to warn Metru Nui of the possible coming danger."And this will be the last cave I ever enter for as long as I live. Hopefully." Kodan thought to himself.The shaken Matoran turned and started heading back the way he came. He had only made it a few paces when a curious thought entered his head. He stopped in his tracks as a question made its way through his mind."Wait." Kodan said quietly, more to himself than to the Fe-Matoran. He turned around to face the one in hiding. "Why didn't you send your message to one of Metru Nui's Toa? My friend knew Toa Lhikan and Toa Nidhiki. So why didn't you just send your message to either of them?Kodan's eyes narrowed in suspicion. "And when you sent out your message to me, why didn't you include everything you just told me in that? Why did you make me spend two months of my life getting here when you could've just sent me the message in the first place?""You don't think I've thought of either of those ideas!" The Fe-Matoran suddenly snapped. "You don't think I wanted a Toa to come save me from this pit of a cave! Or to save me from the Brotherhood and Hunters!"The Fe-Matoran slammed his fist into one of destroyed airship's metal plates that happen to be next to him . A blind Archives Hole could've seen the anger and frustration in his burning green eyes. The sight made the Chronicle wonder why he had opened his big mouth."I wanted to be saved from this fate." The Fe-Matoran continued, forcing himself to calm down. "I wanted...to know what freedom was again."Kodan then understood why the Matoran was so upset. His entire group, many of them possibly his friends, had been murdered. Then he had to abandon his home, with the threat of death covering him like a shadow the entire time. It had to have been a huge burden for the fugitive, one Kodan couldn't begin to picture."I guess I would be angry too if I were in this dilemma and the one being I asked for help started questioning me instead." The Po-Matoran thought sadly."Then why didn't you just send your warning to me in your message?" Kodan asked cautiously again, hoping he wouldn't cause the Nynrah Ghost to throw another fit."Because a Toa would've attracted the attention of those who seek me." The Matoran explained. "And both of the organizations that hunt for me have agents everywhere. Any of them could've intercepted my message before it got to you."The Fe-Matoran then looked hopefully into Kodan eyes. "But a one simple Matoran just passing through the area would not look too suspicious. One simple Matoran may be enough to warn the universe's greatest city that it is in danger."The Nynrah Ghost then gave him a weak smile. "And besides, you made it here in one piece. I truly believe that you can make it back to Metru Nui with no trouble..."No sooner had the words left his mouth when a bolt of pure energy flew past Kodan and struck the Fe-Matoran. He screamed in agony as the blast incinerated his injured body into atoms. Kodan turned to see who had fired the bolt of energy, and then wished he hadn't looked at all.There, at least twenty feet ahead of him, were three monstrous creatures. All of them had spikes erupting out of their back and each wielded a staff. The staff of the one in the middle had fumes coming off it, clearly showing that the bolt came from it. The brown creature holding the staff hissed at Kodan, aiming its staff at him as it did so.Though Kodan had never personally seen the hideous creatures before him, he knew exactly what they were thanks to some of the stories he had recorded as the Chronicle.Rahkshi.

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Everyone is one choice away from being a bad guy in someone else's story.


#6 Offline Hubert

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Posted Jul 12 2012 - 04:16 PM

Chapter V: Escape

The next Rahkshi, its gray and black armor identifying it as one of Silence, struck, its staff a whirlwind of despair. The short time the blade had to spin, gave Kodan more than enough time to realize, he was going to die. The scared Chronicler braced himself for the impact for he was just a lowly Matoran, there was nothing else he could do.However Destiny had a different faith in store for him, evidently part of the brown Rahkshi’s bolt had struck the roof of the cave, causing it to collapse in front of Kodan. It would block the Rahkshi, but only for a short time. Seizing that minuscule amount of time, the Chronicler ran, he ran with fervor he didn’t even know he possessed.However soon Kodan’s resolve began to weaken, fear began to grip him, what point was there in running. There was no way a lone Matoran such as him could possibly escape three Rahkshi. He was going to die here, and the Rahkshi would make sure that no one would even be able to hear his screams. There was no point in running, for where could he even run too, wouldn’t the Fe-Matoran have escaped down the cave if it was possible.No, a small voice in his mind whispered, NO! This time it was a shout. He could not give up, not now, not here. He was a Chronicler, destined to Chronicle the adventures of the Toa Mangai, giving up now would mean giving up on them. As long as the Mangai remained United, it was his Duty to Chronicle them, following them towards their Destiny.Unity, Duty, Destiny. These were the three virtues, giving up now meant giving up on them, and as a Matoran he knew he could never afford to do such a thing. He would find a way, after all wasn’t that how all the great heroes won, no matter how bad the odds they always found a way. Kodan would do so as well.With a new found determination, Kodan continued down the Cave, eventually coming across a pile of Kanoka Disks. There were numerous Disks scattered all over the place, of all different powers and makes. Walking over to one, a Le-Metru Disk, he picked it up as his mind began to formulate an idea.

*****

With one final blast, the Rahkshi of Shattering finally broke through the rocks that had caved-in. However just as the Rahkshi was about to step through, in order to continue their search for its prey, a disk collided with its head, in seconds it was frozen solid, unable to continue the fight.In a split second the other Rahkshi whirled out their staffs, eyes focusing on an unfamiliar sight, the Po-Matoran was riding on a Disk, while reaching for another Disk on his back. By instinct the red Rahkshi, the one that had filled Kodan with so much fear, began to fire off a bolt of fear only to be hit by a ricocheting Disk of Weakening. The Rahkshi fell to the ground and dropped his staff.To his credit the Third Rahkshi did manage to get off a shot, just missing Kodan, but was unable to dodge the Disk of Reconstitution heading straight for him. The Rahkshi collapsed rapidly shifting into a scared Ice Bat who flew off.

*****

Kodan grinned, he had done the impossible, he had defeated three Rahkshi. Akilini, the Matoran word for impossible, that’s what he was going to call what he had just done. Smiling he stole the Staff of the Rahkshi of Fear, ever the craftsmen he realized that it might just make a nice Staff for a Chronicler. Smiling to himself, Kodan flew off on his Disk, aiming to put as much distance between himself and the cave as possible.

Edited by Toa Onarax, Jul 18 2012 - 11:00 AM.

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#7 Offline What?

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Posted Jul 14 2012 - 12:21 PM

Chapter VI: ConfrontationAs Kodan fled back through the cave, his mind kept tugging at what had happened. He felt that something about that interview was flawed. Something didn't quite fit. Since he was desperately running for his life from some very angry Rahkshi, it was rather difficult to put his finger on. Whatever it was, it was important. Kodan abruptly stopped.He knew what it was.How could a Nynrah Ghost, the best inventors of the universe, have created a ship that didn't work? If a Ghost made it, it worked. Even the Makuta had accepted this as an unbreakable truth. And if the Ghosts hadn't sabotaged the artificial Bohrok, they would have worked as intended. There was something the Ghost hadn't known, or something he wasn't telling.Kodan needed somewhere to think. He needed to reconstruct what the Fe-Matoran was actually thinking, and why. And if the Rahkshi were still chasing him, this was not the best place to do it.Kodan lay down on the floor and put his ear against the ground. Sure enough, he could hear the Rahkshi charging up the tunnel after him. In his many years as Chronicler he had developed his senses, and more importantly his analysis, to an acute degree. He had become shocked at the things many Matoran, and that he had never noticed before his self-training. It was why he spent so much time documenting apparently unimportant events. It was (unfortunately) why almost no one read his Chronicles, for they failed to dig deeply enough to understand the significance. It was also why he could hear Something deeper than the armored tread of the Rahkshi. He focused on it, trying to ignore the merely lethal threat of the Rahkshi. There was an unearthliness about it. He had never heard anything so. . . arrhythmic.It irritated him to listen to it. In spite of -- and yet because of -- its strangeness, he wanted to ignore it and think only of the Rahkshi. The predictable rhythym of their footsteps was soothing by comparison. More bursts of sound grated on his mind. Nothing should ever have sounded that way. Now and then there was a single sound (a step? a jump? a fall? Kodan couldn't tell), falling like a single drop into the silence. But then there were four and an quarter sounds without predictable halts between each sound. Kodan wasn't even sure what a quarter of a sound was, but he'd definitely heard it. He estimated it was still quite far away. He had some time to plan.Kodan stood up. Ah, Kodan thought, this sudden cessation of sound is supremely soothing. Then he slapped himself. Now was hardly the time for alliteration. He picked up his remaining disks and calmed himself, closing his eyes and meditating briefly. Which made it all the more embarrassing when he screamed.He'd just heard the last three-quarters of the earlier sound in the darkness just outside of his light.And the Rahkshi were coming from behind.Kodan frantically rummaged through his remaining discs. And something appeared in front of him with that sound; a dull, low, concussive sound. Before Kodan could focus his eyes on it, it blinked out again. He scrabbled in his pack, looking for --A twisted shape blinked into existence and stood, swaying slightly. It was tall, hunched over to fit inside the small tunnel. The darkness seemed to curl around it grovelingly, as a Rahi to a cruel but indisputable master. Red eyes blazed at Kodan through the spreading shadows.As a few seconds passed and Kodan did not die a horrible death, he relaxed a little. His hand was still in his satchel. But he loosened up enough to notice the way the Makuta was favoring his left leg, as well as the greenish vapor leaking from several dents and rents in his plating."Consider, the Chronicler joins the fray,” the Makuta carked. He stared at the Matoran fixedly. His mouth opened as if to form another word, but Kodan couldn't hear anything. He was fascinated. Maybe, Kodan thought, it was –“Consider.”Kodan whipped around to see the Makuta behind him. He flipped back again, but the first figure was still there. Was he teleporting? Kodan backed up against the wall so he could see both out of the corners of his eyes. There was definitely a figure on either side of him simultaneously. Illusions then?“The Chronicler has arrived.” Kodan focused on the second Makuta. It stared back at him motionlessly. Both waved off the oncoming Rahkshi, who faded back into the shadows.No, it probably wasn't an illusion. Every aspect was much too detailed. Illusions are geared towards the unsuspecting, and generally cannot stand intense scrutiny. Kodan knew this level of detail would be difficult for even a Makuta to produce. He looked around, inspecting the mask on both of the Makuta. They were identical.Only Kodan would have recognized the Mask of Time Duplication for what it was. Very few even knew the rumors of its existence. Of course, there was a reason for that. Every one of those rumors had originally begun in Kodan's Chronicles, which none but a few very discerning scholars (in Kodan's very humble opinion) read.“Uh. Hello.” Kodan said. “Makuta Bitil, I presume?”One Makuta cocked its head. The other turned slightly. “You know our name?” said the first. “You know our face?” asked the second. Both smiled. “The other Matoran was right. If you know the past, you can know the future.”“Who? The Fe Matoran?” Kodan asked. “Why would he say that? He didn't even really know me.”“No,” said the first. “Not the Ghost,” said the other. “Ihu, it calls itself.” They looked at each other. “The seer. The prophet.”Kodan felt a surge of hope. Calls, they had said. Present tense. Was Ihu still alive? He hid his burst of elation. “But the Ghost said Ihu was dead.”“Illusions are powerful things.”“And though it was not our primary objective...”“... it was both necessary and enjoyable to prevent the Ghost from informing Metru Nui of the Brotherhood's plans.”“We also used him to call you here. It was simple...”“... it was easy to place the idea in his mind.”“Then what is your primary objective? Why are you here? Why did you call me here?” Kodan asked. He began easing his hand out of his bag of disks, masking the movement by shuffling nervously.“All wish to know the future, and you ask why? You are wondering right now what will happen to you.” Both Makuta lunged. “We will show you.” Inches away from his face they disappeared with a deep concussive sound.Kodan let out a breath and walked forward. Time to find Ihu – he must be down here somewhere. The Mask of Time Duplication was Bitil's greatest asset and his only weakness. Bitil never knew when his future self would summon him out of his own time.A hand materialized in front of Kodan and he yelped, throwing his disk defensively. The Makuta deflected it easily with a slight wave of his hand, sending it sailing away into the black. He looked down at Kodan over a new dent in his chest, a gift from future warfare.“Why are all Matoran so foolish?” the Makuta asked. Its voice was rasping and alien, barely understandable. “Even if it had hit me, that low-powered teleportation disk would do nothing. I'd still know where you were. I'd simply teleport back.”“That's true,” Kodan said. He heard that bizarre sound again and turned to see another Bitil, equally dark, equally evil.Both reached for Kodan; one with his left, one with his right. Kodan dodged back against the wall.“Why do you resist?” “Why do you fight it?” croaked both the Makuta. Their voices were different with each new appearance. “You know you will lose.”“Unlike you, I am loyal.” Kodan said with disgust. “I will find my friend, dead or alive.”He stared the original Bitil straight in the eyes. The Makuta blinked one with a twitch, then the other.“If he lives I will save him. But if you have killed him,” Kodan spat, “I will record his death alongside the name of a deceased Makuta.”“So valiant in the face of enslavement. You are more entertaining than the others.” they rumbled, their eyes shining a brighter crimson. “When you know we can crush you with a fraction of our powers. ”“Also true,” Kodan conceded. “But I know a few things you may have forgotten. Did you know, for example, that an Onu-Metru made disk will return to the thrower if it misses?”“It is irrelevant. Nothing you can do will hurt us.” The second sneered in his turn. “Anything you throw against us is useless.”They flickered in and outside of the present briefly. The air was saturated with the mind-breaking thrumming of a mutilated time-stream. They leaped forward as one.“All right then,” Kodan smiled savagely. “I guess it's good I wasn't planning on hitting you.”The disk slammed out of the darkness into Kodan's chest, and he was gone.

Edited by What?, Jul 18 2012 - 08:42 PM.

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A graduate student at Trinity/Computed the square of infinity.\But it gave him the fidgets/To put down the digits,\So he dropped math and took up divinity.

#8 Offline Grant-Sud

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Posted Jul 17 2012 - 10:04 AM

Chapter VII: Revealed

When he tumbled onto his back from the impact of the disk, Kodan's body was in another place. It hadn't been a powerful disk, just a number three. He was still in the cave, fortunately and unfortunately.It was dark and damp in both directions, but he noticed the sand below him. Wide eyed, a plan began to form in his mind. Written words were being documented.I, searching for my friend in this underground labyrinth, am being chased by a multiform timetraveling Makuta, with powers that far exceed any Toa. Meant to deliver a message to Metru Nui, though this message may just be a way of luring me here for some reason. Why? What's my significance in all this?He tried reasoning it all out, as to what the Makuta wanted with him. Sure, he was a pretty important Chronicler, just not very famed by the community is all; whatever information or abilities he had, why not choose someone else?That was selfish thinking though, he wouldn't want anyone else to be scrambling for life in this cave and experiencing this sort of fear. Besides, they wouldn't have been able to Chronicle is correctly.Realizing he had been here before, Kodan decided to move back down the path into the flight chamber once more. If the Makuta were searching for him, they'd expect him to leave, or be on the outside. They had many means of tracking him, hearing, x-ray vision and Karzahni they could even read his mind.Pounding against the sand he hit the enclosing cave once again, and squirmed through it. Finding himself in the chamber where the Fe-Matoran had appeared, Kodan swiftly moved past the ceiling debris and began searching for anything he had missed. Someplace where Ihu may have been hidden away. To his left, he noticed the Fe-Matoran's body lying on the ground. He didn't need to go and check to know he was dead.Shaking off the sick feeling in his stomach, Kodan took in notice of the ship, damaged and scared, but left in fairly decent shape despite what it had gone through.Curious as to the good quality of something that had ignited ablaze, Kodan moved to the side of the airship and clicked the hatch. The door opened.And Ihu sat down on the inside, strapped to one of the chairs.He felt shock, and rushed forward.Always in the last place you expect, right? Kodan thought with a grin. He ripped off the cloth from his friends mouth, had a terrified expression on his face."A-are you for real?""What? Ihu it's me!""How can ..." he took in deep breaths, blinking. "How do I know they didn't kill you, and they are using your body as a disguise?"Kodan faulted. Makuta did have that power."It is me Ihu, you're my friend, the one who gave me my first story to Chronicle, remember? An old Knowledge tower, you had told me, was old and worn, about to shatter and collapse any day?" He moved and untied the rope, thinking that, if Ihu himself was a Makuta, then they had serious skill in tying themselves up. "So you called me up, to record everything on the tower, and when it broke a week later, all the information was able to be stored and transferred on a new one?"Ihu brought a hand to his wrists, and moved away from the chair. He looked up, and watched Kodan's eyes for a long moment."Kodan... thanks for coming," he reached out and hugged his friend. "I'm sorry you did though.""How are you still here? Why did that Matoran tell me you were dead?"The Ko-Matoran shook his head. "It's been the Makuta's doing from the start, he's been used for months now, wandering around like a puppet to do assigned things. They needed him around until you showed up... they were going to kill him after that, and they were easy about saying it."Kodan shook his head. "But why? Why risk bringing me into all this?""You must have something, something they need...""But what? I know nothing, I only know that I should have called in all the Toa Mangai from the start... Ihu, we have to get out of here. The Makuta are on my tail, and they are probably at all the exits now. Is there a secret passage out of this place?"Ihu looked surprised for a moment, and shook his head."My friend didn't even tell you... no of course not.""What?""Kodan, this ship flies. That's what the Makuta wanted him around for. After they retrieved information from me and the Ghost, they used him to repair the ship so they could have a quick escape if needed. In case you brought help that you shouldn't have."The Chronicler stood there, dumbfounded."It flies Kodan. Let's start her up and get out of here!"

Edited by Grant-Sud Rises, Jul 18 2012 - 04:03 PM.

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#9 Online Ballom

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Posted Jul 18 2012 - 01:38 AM

Chapter VIII: FlightKodan hesitated for a moment. It had been revealed that the scheming of the Makuta had far exceeded what the Fe-Matoran had directly related, as Bitil had planted most of the fake story into the mind of the Nynrah Ghost. There was a chance that this conveniently offered escape airship was part of a grander scheme, moving him like a pawn, relying on his decision to go into the ship with Ihu.Then again, he realized, the Fe-Matoran had told the truth about the Brotherhood’s plans. Either there were things the Makuta overlooked, or Bitil was so confident he could kill him that the Makuta decided what Kodan knew didn’t matter. On this realization, Kodan remembered that there were still at least two different versions of Bitil marauding in the cave, along with whatever Rahkshi remained. This alone was enough to make him scramble into the seat next to Ihu.“Alright,” Kodan said hurriedly, “You worked with the Fe-Matoran on this and flew it before. Can you pilot us out?”Ihu, cool and dispassionate as he had ever been, gave a small nod. “It is prepped for a fast escape, after all.”The Ko-Matoran’s hands reached forward to manipulate a panel in the front of the craft, pressing several keys before taking hold of a small control stick. In the confines of the miniature airship, the sudden pulse of engines rattled the two Matoran about violently, and the narrow walls caused the roaring of the engines to echo throughout the carved flight chamber, and doubtless further into the cave proper.“Time leave,” Ihu said. “At last.”As Ihu pushed the control stick forward, the airship blasted forward like a missile, its curved bow punching through the surrounding rubble with ease. Quickly building up speed in the long tube of the chamber, it shortly burst out into the main cave chamber.The two Bitils were waiting there, one on each side of the cave, twisted figures lurking to attack the fleeing vessel. Tendrils of shadow stretched from their hands, spreading their inky grasp outward. Yet as the airship shot toward their reach, and as the wisps of shadow the two copies projected meshed into a single net, the Bitil on the right abruptly vanished with another concussive noise. The other Makuta screeched in hate at being foiled again by his own Kanohi, followed by another shriek, this one of pain, as Ihu directed the airship straight into him. Armor crunched, and Bitil bounced off the hull like a toy.Then the airship was climbing up the next shaft, toward the ever growing spot of light that was the entrance, and out into the glorious brightness of the valley. Kodan was blinded by the sudden light, but Ihu seemed unaffected, likely from his experiences in the dazzling whiteness of icy Ko-Metru. When vision returned to him, he saw that Ihu was still steering expertly, swerving the airship back and forth to dodge the immense pines across the valley. They had almost cleared these when a barrage of shadow blasts began striking the vegetation around them, their dark energies tearing into the pines, or speeding past the airship along its sides.“Bitil again?” Kodan wondered aloud. The Makuta was showing incredible tenacity his pursuit. Of course, any Matoran who knew of their plans must be the foremost threat at the moment, he acknowledged. Surely more than Bitil and a few Rahkshi were after them. He soberly reflected on this fact as the craft flew farther out over the Southern Continent. Below them stretched the winding path of the Tren Krom River, the smoky peak of Mount Valmai ahead. These landmarks mattered little to Kodan, as he contemplated the next move he and Ihu would have to make.Certainly, they would have to take great care to contact as few beings as possible on their way. It would be impossible to tell which may be spies of the Makuta, despite the need to get the information out. He would have to seek an audience with Turaga Dume once they arrived. Yes, that would be the way to approach it. Contented with this decision, Kodan closed his eyes. The ordeal of being chased by Makuta and Rahkshi had taken its toll on the Chronicler, accustomed as he was to a slow lifestyle of writing, and he soon drifted into a light sleep.

------

Crackling noises throughout the airship brought Kodan out of his doze. Confused by the odd clamor, he looked around in an attempt to determine the source, as well as the current location of the ship.Ihu answered his unspoken questions for him. “We made it past the Southern Continent, and are now passing over the land of Karzahni. Unfortunately, I couldn’t avoid the volcanoes of ice in our path. They scorched the underside, and must have damaged components. We’ve been losing altitude slowly since then.”Kodan gulped at the thought. “Karzahni? It may not be full of beings intent on killing us, but I’ve heard no being who arrives there leaves.”A flicker of worry crossed Ihu’s face. Coming from the stoic Ko-Matoran, this was a terrifying sign. “We’ll have to try to cross as much of it as we can before we crash,” Ihu said, sounding strained.Absolutely wonderful, Kodan thought. Makuta, Rahkshi, and now an imminent crash in the land of a madbeing. What new horrors could destiny have waiting?

Edited by Ballom, Jul 18 2012 - 09:00 PM.

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#10 Offline Toa Smoke Monster

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Posted Jul 18 2012 - 07:22 PM

Chapter 9

Kodan couldn't believe his luck. He had been fortunate enough to find his friend, Ihu, whom he had thought to be dead. Together, they had managed to escape from the dark, damp cave they were trapped in, the Rahkshi, and Makuta Bitil. They had even managed to vacate the Southern Continent, a feat that was very hard to accomplish for two lone Matoran.

But apparently their luck had just run out, for now their damaged airship was slowly plummeting into the realm of Karzahni. A realm where no one was said to ever escape.

"We need to prepare ourselves." Ihu said, trying desperately to keep the falling airship from crashing into the volcanoes around them. "I won't be able to keep us up in the air much longer. Is there anything we can use to defend ourselves with when I somehow land this thing?"

"I don't know." Kodan said frantically. "I do have some Kanoka Disks, but..."

Kodan eye's suddenly widened. "The disks."

Ihu looked over at his friend. He could see an excitement in his eyes that puzzled him, since they both were minutes from crashing into a realm of death. "What disks?"

"The Kanoka Disks!" Kodan said rather joyfully, reaching into his pack as he said it. He began pulling out disk after disk, searching quickly for the right one. Ihu couldn't help but give the Po-Matoran a skeptical look.

"I found these back in the cave." Kodan quickly explained. "I used them to down three Rahkshi, and....yes! This is it!"

The Chronicle had a Le-Metru Regeneration Disk with a power level of seven in his hands. It was at that moment that Ihu realized what his friend had in mind.

"What are you waiting for? USE IT!" Ihu cried. He pulled on the control lever to keep the left side of the airship from strapping across a volcano, which he narrowly succeeded with. In less than a minute, both Matoran and the airship would be nothing but smashed parts in the rocky ground something wasn't done to fix the damage to the vessel.

Kodan jumped out of his seat and ran as fast as he could to the middle of the ship. Staying as balanced as he could, he slammed the disk into the floor of the airship. Outside, the scorched underside of the vessel healed in seconds, leaving no trace that it had even been burned at all.

"That helped, but we're still descending!" Ihu yelled to Kodan. "The engines must have taken some damage too!"

"Then I'll fix them as well!" Kodan yelled back. He started to make his to the back of the airship. He wasn't sure how exactly he close he would be able to get to the engines from the inside, but he knew he had to try. There wasn't a choice. It was this or death, and Kodan wanted to live. He was the Chronicle after all, and his story wasn't ending like this.

But fate, as it does for all beings at some point in their lives, had other plans.

One of the volcanoes of ice erupted just as the airship flew past it. The largest piece of ice that was sent flying out of the eruption slammed into the side of the vessel, destroying most of the engines in the process. Kodan, caught completely off-guard by the impact, was sent flying across the vessel. He slammed back-first into the hard metal wall.

The Po-Matoran struggled to stay awake even as he felt his weakened body slide across the floor as the airship began to free fall. His vision became blurrier as he succumbed to the darkness. Within a few seconds, the Chronicle's eyes softly closed as he fell into unconsciousness.

Ihu, who had seen the impact his friend had taken, fought to keep himself from rushing to his friend's aid. If Kodan was still alive after taking that hard of an impact, he certainly wouldn't be if the airship crashed and exploded. He had to try to land the vessel as best as he could. But even as the airship nose dived straight down, with Ihu pulling on the control lever with all his might to pull the ship up just a little, he knew, deep down, that it was hopeless.

"But I will not give up." Ihu thought bravely. "Kodan didn't give up on finding me when I was in danger, so now it is my turn not to give up now."

So Ihu kept pulling on the lever, hoping, praying, that it would pull the ship up just enough so that it didn't crash head first into the incoming rocky terrain below. With only seconds left, he looked like nothing would happen. But then at the last possible second, the airship pulled slightly up, allowing the bottom of the front of the airship to slam first into the ground, followed by the rest of the vessel. The energy behind the impact scattered all the windows, nearly flatted the hull of the vessel, send Ihu flying straight into the ceiling. The seer force of the blow knocked the Ko-Matoran unconscious upon contact. His body fell back into his chair before bouncing off it and onto the metal floor.

Dust, rocks, and pieces of metal and glass went flying in all directions due to the landing of the airship into Karzahni. Both Kodan and Ihu had survived the landing, but neither of them had were awaken by it. Neither of them were awake to think that they were now in the realm of broken Matoran, where the concept of freedom most likely didn't exist. Neither of them were awake to think about the fact that they were most likely going to spend the remainder of their days here, unable to warn Metru Nui of the coming threat of the Makuta.

And neither of them were awake to notice that a fuel line had broken, allowing fuel to flow out of its holding container and straight for the flaming engines. The airship was about to be engulfed in flames, with both Matoran still in it.


Edited by The Smoke Monster, Jul 18 2012 - 07:23 PM.

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Everyone is one choice away from being a bad guy in someone else's story.


#11 Offline Hubert

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Posted Jul 20 2012 - 06:28 PM

Chapter X: Darkness

The room was filled with shadows, and that suited its occupant’s just fine. The beings, who would often come here, were schemers and liars. In light, subtle details of their face could give away valuable secrets. Secrets they wished to keep a secret with all their ability. In the darkness, no one could see these features, schemers could scheme, and not be caught.Schemers like Bitil, and his Master. However Darkness also had a nasty habit of bringing out fear in beings, and Bitil was feeling it firsthand. For the Makuta it was an odd sensation, he was the one that caused fear. The other Makuta feared him, so why did this Master of his cause him so much fear. It was downright unnerving, but at the same time Bitil knew deep down that his fear was justified. That thought frightened him more than anything else.On his knees the Makuta spoke, “Master, I apologize the Matoran, they escaped from my grasp…”Before he could finish, the other being interrupted him, “Tell me Bitil, why are you telling me this, instead of finding them. I’d say that your current actions are a waste of my time, and my time is very valuable.”“But sir, there is no hope of their survival, they fell into Karzhani, retrieving them would be nigh impossible.” Bitil protested.“Karzhani is just another realm, I care not of the dangers, if you cannot accomplish the task then I shall find someone else. Is that what you would prefer?”“No sir, I’ll go.”“Good, now leave me.” With a wave his hand, a sign almost imperceptible in the darkness, the being gestured for the Makuta to take his leave, there was much to be done and little time to do it. In the darkness, a new plot was being born, one that could change everything. There is so much to be done, and so little time.

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#12 Offline What?

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Posted Jul 22 2012 - 06:49 PM

Chapter XI: DeliriumKodan awoke to the sound of an explosion. Never the best way to regain consciousness, Kodan thought fuzzily, but hardly the worst. He remembered one time when he'd woken up to the sound of Turaga Dume gnashing his teeth. That had been an interesting day...Kodan snapped back to the present and sat up, coughing in the fumes from the explosion. Blinking around blearily, he saw twisted shapes encircling Ihu and himself. Shakily pulling a tablet from his pack, he made a note on his to-do list.. Make friends with twisted shapes so they don't kill us. Inspecting this, he decided it was slightly too optimistic and amended it: so they don't kill us horribly.Malformed hands grabbed Kodan dragged him further from the explosion, which was burning very cheerfully in the dim landscape. Kodan was pleasantly shocked to see the figures were not Makuta. He coughed a few more times as the hands let go and laid him down far from the blaze."Who might you be, fine sirs?" Kodan wheezed. "You saved us from the fire, and we are in your debt forever.""Forever? Forever is a long time. We have been here scores of thousands of years, but even that is not forever," spoke one of the figures hollowly.He felt very light-headed, but Kodan considered that briefly. "All right. Then let's say we're in your debt for about a month and a half." He pushed himself up and stood. Staggering slightly, he waved at the flaming ship. "Don't mind the burning aircraft over there. It explodes pretty often. Nynrah Ghost workmanship. Doesn't seem to hurt it too much."He glanced around again. "So this must be Karzahni, the land of death and destruction and whatnot. Looks really boring. And you guys look terrible. No offense, of course. But I really think somebody gave that guy there a leg instead of an arm and stuck a hand on it so nobody would notice." Kodan realized all the figures were badly repaired Matoran, and made a note not to need repairs in the near future. He decided to try a lighter note. "So... What do you guys do for fun around here?"The deformed Matoran all looked puzzled. "We sometimes go bowling with flaming ice balls."Kodan thought about that. "That sounds rather unpleasant."The Matoran nodded. "It is, but it is visually stimulating.""Never mind, we'll try it some other time," Kodan said. "I'm a little short on that whole time thing right now anyway, since there's a Makuta or three after me. Where's the nearest exit in this blasted place?""There are no exits. There have never been exits," A Matoran intoned.Kodan laughed. "That's ridiculous. If there were no exits, I wouldn't be able to escape. And there's no way I'm staying here.""On the contrary, little creature, you will be here a very long time indeed."Kodan whirled to see the average Matoran's nightmare. A tall, horned, misshapen figure -- Kodan was getting tired of being unexpectedly confronted with twisted figures, but at least the horns were new -- looming over him. Kodan remained unimpressed. He was not the average Matoran. But Karzahni could easily torture him, and considering what he'd done to these other Matoran that would probably be the nicest thing he would do."Hail, Lord Karzahni! I and my companion have travelled far to bring you the news."Karzahni frowned. Curiosity was a sensation he had not felt in many, many years. He found it to be very unpleasant. "What is this news?""The Makuta Bitil is has heard of your... awesome realm and is coming to take it from you. We have come to warn you to evacuate, for he has great and terrible power."Karzahni's eyes glowed brighter. The air around him burned with half-seen nightmare images. All the Matoran, including the unconscious Ihu, cringed as their worst fears warped their perceptions and emotions. Kodan began to understand why Karzahni was the Matoran byword in fear. Kodan guessed he was completely insane. Even the idea of leaving his realm seemed to be driving him berserk. Kodan smiled. He had been counting on that. The more confusion, the more chance he and Ihu would have of escaping.Karzahni's mad eyes glared through the cloud of nightmares surrounding him. "If it is a war this Makuta wants, it is a war he will have."

Edited by What?, Jul 22 2012 - 06:54 PM.

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A graduate student at Trinity/Computed the square of infinity.\But it gave him the fidgets/To put down the digits,\So he dropped math and took up divinity.

#13 Offline Hahli Husky

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Posted Jul 24 2012 - 11:23 AM

The deadline has been changed to July 25th, 2012, 11:59 PM PDT to adjust for a day of server downtime.
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#14 Online Ballom

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Posted Jul 26 2012 - 12:07 AM

Chapter XII: ReturnKodan’s heart leapt that this most recent pronouncement. It seemed that manipulating Karzahni into assisting him and Ihu in their escape would be easier than expected.“Yes!” Kodan cried. “But the Makuta and his forces will be here soon. You must begin preparing immediately, so that you can be ready before they begin attacking your kingdom.”Karzahni considered this, contemplation reflected in his mad gaze. “You speak the truth, Matoran. But there will be no evacuation. We will wait here for the Makuta, and destroy them when he arrives.” He turned and began to walk back into the shadows from which he arrived, cracking his length of flaming chain over his head as he did.Kodan ran after him, unwilling to resign himself to Karzahni’s realm so easily. “Lord Karzahni! I have more news I have not yet conveyed!”The twisted tyrant paused in his stride. “What more news can there be?” he barked.“You say that you are going to fight Bitil and the terrible power which he brings, but you do not know what a great force you will be against. Fortunately, the city of Metru Nui is willing to lend you its aid. You only need to let my companion and me briefly leave to gather your reinforcements from there.”Karzahni barely turned. “Metru Nui and its inhabitants despise me and my realm. Why do they offer their aid now?”Kodan's mind raced as he struggled to come up with more excuses. “Turaga Dume recognizes the importance of your glorious kingdom. And the Turaga fears that should your glorious kingdom fall, Metru Nui will also be attacked by Bitil.”“They only fear that I am weak, and only seek to fight for their own safety,” Karzahni sneered. “No, we do not need their help. Leave me, little creature, lest I must punish you.” He resumed his march away.“No, Lord Karzahni, you're wrong to ascribe such ill motives to Metru Nui. In fact, the Turaga is sufficiently concerned for the safety of your realm that he is willing to allow the force he sends to remain here indefinitely! They will never leave, just as you want!” This new life sounded feeble even to Kodan, but hopefully Karzahni would be attracted to the offer of more beings on which to experiment.And, to the Chronicler’s relief, the offer did seem enough. The horned being halted, appearing to consider the matter, idly twirling his flaming chains.“I accept Dume’s offer,” Karzahni rumbled. Kodan's elation at this died as the tyrant loomed over him.“But,” Karzahni roared, “If you do not deliver on this, I will inflict an entire universe of pain upon you!” Hints of new nightmares swirled into being around them, depicting dark visions, of Kodan torn in two by protosteel chains, infernal fire torching his body. The Chronicler gulped, hastily adding a meek “Yes, Lord Karzahni.”With this, the mad being’s mood swung back. “All of you, clear away from the Matorans’ ship!”The malformed shapes of the other Matoran quickly scurried away from the craft, whose fires have already burned down to embers. Mentally, Kodan again praised the craftsmanship of the Nynrah Ghosts, before gesturing to Ihu, who had been waiting patiently as Kodan argued with the tyrant. As the two Matoran clambered back into the vessel, Ihu briefly mouthed “good job” as he took the controls again.While the dismal crowd of poorly-reassembled Matoran and their master looked on, the battered ship sealed shut around both Kodan and Ihu, wobbily rising into the air for the last leg of its journey. The engines seemed to have been enfeebled by the most recent damages, but nevertheless it glided off without much difficulty.

------

Opportunely, the remainder of the kingdom of Karzahni did not present such an obstacle as the first portion had. There were no volcanoes spewing burning ice, merely dark, level planes that stretched for the rest of the landmass. Then, once more open sea, for a long stretch until the massive Sea Gates of Metru Nui became visible, the only opening in the immense Great Barrier. Beyond these, the sea acquired the pearly silver cast Kodan knew so well, and eventually the winding coast of Le-Metru curled over the horizon. He must have sighed in relief upon seeing this sight, for Ihu turned toward him and gave a small smile. “Yes, my feelings exactly, Kodan.”They soared onward, Le-Metru unfolding beneath the small craft, its myriad chutes and transport centers a complicated green maze full of busy Matoran being whisked by. The land beneath them broadened, and the Metru filled the entirety of their view.“Where do you think we should stop?” asked Ihu.“The Coliseum,” Kodan answered promptly. “I need to see Dume as soon as possible.”“Yes, that would be most prudent,” Ihu admitted, adjusting their course minutely. “As for myself, I will also disembark near the Coliseum, and then take a chute to Ko-Metru. While you warn Dume, I can confer with the other Scholars and Seers. I find it disturbing that the prophecies in the stars held nothing of this imminent attack by the Makuta.”“Good, “said Kodan. “And as we go, we should both pray to Mata Nui that we can stop this.”

------

The plaza in front of the Coliseum was surprisingly empty for this time of day, its protodermis flagstones void of the usual Matoran passersby. However, this provided an ideal place for their ship to touch down. Due to the urgency of their arrival, Ihu seemed to have little interest in a gentle landing, bringing the craft down in a jarring collision. As the Ko-Matoran winced, Kodan already was pulling open the nearby hatch, to sprint over the flagstones toward the lobby floor of the Coliseum. This too was empty, save for a severe-looking Ga-Matoran behind the desk.“I’m here to see Turaga Dume. You must allow me to do so as soon as possible!” Kodan gasped.The Ga-Matoran clucked about his lack of decorum, but consulted a pad nearby. “Turaga Dume is expecting you, surprisingly,” she said.Kodan was mildly bewildered by this, but accepted it is another good turn of fate. Destiny, perhaps, was helping him in its own minor way after all. His recent round of escapes has certainly been astoundingly convenient.“You may go to your nearest left, where a lift waits,” the Ga-Matoran continued. Kodan muttered a thanks before briskly heading there, entering the lift tube for Dume’s office. Once there, as the protodermis tube whisked upward through the skyscraper, the Chronicler attempted to compose himself for the esteemed elder. After all, if he appeared too disheveled, the Turaga might dismiss his claims as those of the mad. A few seconds after Kodan had deemed his appearance sufficiently improved, the lift slid open smoothly. Before him, an immaculately polished balcony stretched across the entire floor, transparent windows around its entire breadth. On the far side of the room stood Dume. The red frame of the elder seemed much frailer than Kodan had remembered, but otherwise he was clearly himself.“Kodan, my lad! I hear you have some news for me,” Dume enthused, hobbling toward the Matoran.“How did you know I was returning?” Kodan wondered.Dume waved a hand. “I have telescreens all over the city. Picking up your odd craft on them was no trouble.” He smiled, and threw a thin arm over Kodan’s shoulder. “So, what interesting events came of the exploding cave on the Southern Continent?”Kodan took a deep breath, and then narrated the entirety of what had happened, from this discovery of the wounded Nynrah Ghost, to his pursuit by the multiple Bitils, to his flight with Ihu through Karzahni, to the horrible plot of the Makuta that the Matoran had revealed. Throughout his narration, Dume’s expression remained impassive. When Kodan finished, looking at the Turaga hopefully, the elder's response was unusually calm.“Well, that is one of the more interesting narrations I’ve heard in a long time. To tell you the truth, I actually have known of some of this myself. I have access to many sources of information in the city, and it turns out that our guardian Teridax was a bit lax in allowing intelligence such as this to slip free. I initially did not want to believe what I heard, but now it seems time to act, given your compelling story.”Dume pulled forth a small device with several buttons from his robes, and manipulated it using his weathered hands.“I'm going to contact two of our nearest Toa — both Toa of Ice. With you to chronicle the event, they will close the nearest Sea Gate, the only one open. Then, not only will we be safe from any attempts on us by the Makuta, but Karzahni will be unable to reach us as well, when he learns how you tricked him. And, Kodan my lad, we’re safe.”“Thank you, Turaga,” Kodan said sincerely. “You've no idea how glad I am to hear it.”Dume smiled kindly. “Of course. And, speaking of our safety, no one has seen Teridax recently either. So, as you can see, we will be completely safe.” The smile spread further. “I shall take care of my city, as I always have.”Kodan's nerves must have been frayed by the recent events, because he was almost certain that there was something dark lurking beneath the Turaga’s smile. However, this fleeting notion vanished when it the elder’s expression changed again.“Now, back to the lobby. The Toa are on their way, and you don't want to keep them waiting. After all, each passing moment leaves us more vulnerable, wouldn’t you say? You can even take that fantastic ship of yours. Oh, and Kodan?” Dume’s voice dropped to a whisper. “Make sure you don’t mention any of this to the other Matoran. Naturally, it’s important, and they will know at the right time, but for now we should not worry them unnecessarily. It’s for the best.”Still uttering prolific thanks, the Chronicler took his leave of Dume’s chamber, as Dume waved him along. The Turaga's wisdom and generosity were astounding; soon the ordeal that had begun in the cave would be finished, and Kodan could rest easily.

------

The Southern Sea Gate of Metru Nui was even more immense than it had appeared when Kodan originally passed it. Its two sections spread wide to allow passage until Metru Nui, the mighty protodermis slabs of the gate appeared almost immeasurably wide, with upper reaches vanishing into the mists of the sky. Various forms of plant life had also taken root along its breadth, including lichens gripping various extended outcroppings, which gave visitors purchase from which to admire the structure. It was to one of these large open ledges that the battered and scarred rocket airship landed, cramped with its passengers of two Toa and a Matoran.After it alighted upon a worn stone section, Kodan and the two Toa he was accompanying exited, stretching their bodies after the flight. The Po-Matoran had attempted to explain the situation again en route, but both of the quiet Toa of Ice did appear to lend much credence to what he said. However, Kodan still managed to remain calm, as the imminent closing of the Sea Gate would still lay his fears to rest. Thus, as the Toa fanned out over the outcropping to examine the gates they were to draw shut, Kodan examined the surrounding area, where afternoon shadows lengthened against the immense walls.And then, the Toa began their task. The first, a male Matatu-wearer, activated his Kanohi to push the silvery waters against the gate several bio away from its edges, where they both employed their elemental powers to freeze the liquid protodermis solid. With this accomplished, the skilled Matatu-wearer brought his Kanohi to bear on the giant gates themselves, slowly wrenching them from the position they had lain in for centuries. Bit by bit, the great bulk of the Gates ground along, until they locked against each other, completely closing with a crash.Kodan smiled in relief, and scribbled a few notes on the happening into a tablet of his, as the Toa further locked the gate by freezing layers of ice along its edges. The whole task had taken only a few minutes.As the small group moved to return to the airship, a swath of shadows in a higher alcove churned, and a Kanoka disk sailed out toward the group. The second Toa seemed to spot it first, screaming “Down!” as he dodged swiftly with the use of a Kakama. As the disk missed its intended target and looped around toward Kodan, the Chronicler felt the invisible hand of telekinesis hurl him to the ground, out of harm’s way. However, the Kanoka then finally redirected itself into the airship, striking it. Beneath the powerful disk, the vessel’s surface convulsed horribly, as smooth aerodynamic surfaces were reconstituted into a horrible warped, clearly grounded wreck. Yet this was barely noticed by the group — for the patch of shadows jumped from the alcove toward the outcropping, shedding its inky cloak as it did. A hideous bipedal being was revealed, leaping toward the Toa with razor talons outstretched. Both Toa handily sidestepped the initial attack, but the attacker merely caught itself in a neat roll, and then hurled a second Kanoka from an extra arm on its back. The Matatu-wearer’s glance flickered to the disk for just a moment as he telekinetically stopped it from striking his companion.It was a moment too much, for as the Toa of Ice halted the disk, the aggressor raced toward him with uncanny speed, tearing into the Toa’s torso and face with its claws. As this Toa screamed from the mortal wounds, collapsing, the other hurled sharp daggers formed of ice at his brother’s soon-to-be-killer.All this took place in the span of mere seconds. Kodan knew the remaining Toa would last even less long than the first had. In a desperate attempt to help, he picked up the nearest stones and hurled them at the attacker’s face.These projectiles, although thrown with great accuracy, nevertheless did almost nothing to the creature, whose purple carpet of a face roiled in what appeared to be amusement. Ignoring the Chronicler’s ineffective attack, the beast concentrated on the other Toa, entering into a brief spar with the lightning-fast Kakama-wearer. Both combatants swept back and forth swiftly, swinging claws and Toa Tools. In short order, the experienced Toa maneuvered his opponent into a corner, and then made a powerful strike at its neck with his staff, coated in icicles.This blow connected brutally, sinking deep into flesh. Yet the creature showed little pain in its expression, mostly anger, as it snarled at the Toa and grabbed the staff. Before the Toa could withdraw his grasp, a massive lightning-like rush emanated from the being’s claws, surging into the body of the hapless Toa. He spasmed for a moment, before collapsing on the ground to join his brother in death.Kodan gaped in horror. Time seemed to grind to a standstill as the victorious attacker snapped the staff from its neck, and stroke toward him. The Chonicler stumbled backward, unaware of where he was going, until he felt the cold, unfeeling stone of the Gate against his back. He opened his mouth to speak, but nothing escaped.“Why?” managed Kodan at last.Seeming to enjoy the moment, the creature bared its fangs at the trapped Matoran.“Regards of The Shadowed One. And of Teridax,” it snarled.Kodan’s mind was just able to piece the facts together in the second before the razor claws descended, and darkness came.

------

The chute transport raced along in Ko-Metru, as Ihu patiently gripped the sled that transported him through the shimmering energy field, toward the central Knowledge Tower. There had been massive delays in accessing the chute system, unfortunately, but now at least the Scholar was able to glide along toward his destination.White brilliance flashed by outside the thin confines of the chute, as the Ko-Matoran scanned the blurred horizon. The other Scholars might not believe his tale at first when they hear it, but he would find a way to convince them. Surely, he would find proof in the stars, and their strange prophecies. Surely . . .A noise outside the chute startled him out of his reflection, as a bright Nui-Rama buzzed along. Intrigued, Ihu watched the Rahi as it flew closer to the chute, eventually ending up directly parallel to his transport sled. He chuckled slightly at the coincidence, examining the iridescent, multifaceted eyes of the insect. Remarkably, it appeared to be looking back at him! Yet, there was something odd in its eyes, something odd indeed. As a being accustomed to finding meaning, Ihu was able to see that something clouded the Rahi’s gaze, almost like mania.He was continuing to marvel at this strange turn of events when the Nui-Rama swerved into the chute’s edge. Its sharp wing disrupting the careful equilibrium of the electromagnetic sheath, the chute bent precipitously under the stress. But the insect did not stop with only stabbing a wing inward, leaning its whole carapace into the chute.This stress, of such a large Rahi crashing into the chute snapped the fragile structure entirely. The sheath of magnetized protodermis gave way, splintering into countless volatile shards which scorched Ihu with their energetic contents. Then, as the chute completely fell apart, the transport sled began the long descent from the elevated chute toward the distant glaciers of Ko-Metru.As he fell, Ihu’s last thought was a fervent hope that Kodan had succeeded.

------

Eliminator’s shadow vanished from a high floor of the Coliseum, as the Dark Hunter departed, leaving the frail figure of Dume alone in the windowed chamber.Yes, everything had proceeded well after all. The last Nynrah Ghost was finished, and although the elusive Matoran had fled the Southern Continent, they were no longer any concern at all. Eliminator was very good at his job, and an exercise of the Insect Control Kraata power was child’s play.Other plans had also advanced. The last gates had closed, sealing Metru Nui apart from the universe. Tendrils of loathsome Morbuzakh were slowly winding their way from the Great Furnace, and Toa were slowly vanishing. Even the new ones to come would fail, as fools destined by the stars above for oblivion. And, last and most importantly of all, a virus simmered deep in its hiding place, virulent poison waiting for its grand use.Yes, the plan was continuing, to its certain fruition.Behind the Kiril he wore as a disguise, Teridax softly began to laugh.

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#15 Offline Hahli Husky

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Posted Jul 26 2012 - 02:51 AM

The entry period is over, so I'll be locking the topic for the judging period. After the judging is over, the topics will reopen and writers can continue if they wish. You will be allowed to collaborate, drop out if you want, mix up the order of posting, etc. If you wish to have your epics renamed, please PM me with a decided-upon title. Look for review topics tomorrow! :)EDIT: Judging over, epic reopened.

Edited by Hahli Husky, Aug 06 2012 - 02:57 AM.

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