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Destiny Quest

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#1 Offline The Xinlo

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Posted Oct 14 2011 - 11:45 PM

Posted ImageChapter One: A Day In The Life Of

It was a spectacular sunny day over Deax Nui, with just the slightest cool breeze to make oneself feel completely relaxed and at ease. It rippled the sparkling ocean around the island, making it twinkle like silver fairy dust. It was a the perfect day. And yet, here Xinlo was, sitting in an office, mapping out trees to be cut down. He hated his job as a forester; he sat in this same office most days, plotting routes and calculating expenses, while other lower-down workers went and marked all the trees he supposedly wanted cut down.He really hated destroying the forests of his home island, as they were so beautiful, but the job was extremely high paying. And after the trees were marked, he went out once a month, and felled them. As much as Xinlo hated destroying nature, he loved danger; he thrived on it. And chopping Deax Nui's massive trees was about as dangerous a job as you could get on said island. The trees had to be measured and cut with extreme precision, or it could crush someone. Honestly, it could crush just about anything around it, including the guides. They tell you which way the tree's swaying, wind direction, wind speed, etc. Without them, Xinlo would most likely chop the wrong spot, and destroy even more beautiful forest. And his vehicle. Unfortunately, though, today was not that one day. He tore his longing gaze from the wall-filling window, and continued his dreary work.* * *“Xinlo... Sir, wake up.” Xinlo's eyes snapped open, and he raised his head. “Wha-?” A short red and black Ta-Matoran stood in front of him.“Oh, Kara-” Seeing the accusing look in his secretary’s eyes, he added quickly, “I was just thinking, you know, in my head. Calculating. I wasn't sleeping,” he lied. This wasn't the first time he'd been caught asleep on the job.“Right. Well, you've got a call on line four. Some big company wants to hire you out. I tried paging you, but you were... lost in deep, deep, thought.”“Oh, thanks.” Xinlo replied drowsily. She gave an amused smirk, and left the room. Xinlo picked up his phone, and struck up a rather unengaging conversation with the City of Uteara's logging chief.* * *On his way back home, Xinlo passed by his favorite restaurant, “Olam's 'ole”. He went there every day after work, and knew everyone who resided inside. As he pushed open the door, the little bell at the top chimed, causing everyone to look round.“Hey, Xinlo!” the various customers greeted as he walked towards the back corner where his two friends sat. Xinlo nodded at the chef, Olam, who already knew he wanted “the usual”. His two friends, Eek and Touran, were two businessmen from the Industry Region, who both owned shops. Xinlo would regularly update his equipment in either of the two when he visited the region.“Hey guys. How's it going?” he asked both the visiting Matoran.Eek, a Cai-Matoran and natural salesman, replied with an unusually mellow tone, “It's alright, I guess.”Touran, a Ta-Matoran, simply nodded in his direction.“His shop was robbed yesterday. He lost half his stock, and some of his most prized possessions,” Eek shook his head.“There's a group of Vortixx that sneak in at night. I've had the place wired with every anti-theft device I could come across, but it didn't help. They somehow got in and stole some of my best equipment. But only weapons. I think they're up to something.”“Well, they're obviously up to something,” Touran added. “They're stealing weapons! I don't know what in the void they need weapons for though; it's not like there's any threats or anything. Unless they plan to go on a massacre.”“Let's hope not,” Xinlo said grimly, “We don't need another uprising like last year. As pathetic as that was, it still caused a few deaths. Something tells me these Vortixx know what they're doing. I still can't understand why you two stay there; there's plenty of business opportunities in Uteara, and it's ten times safer.”“This is our home, Xinlo. You'd have to blow it up before we'd leave.” Eek nodded his head in agreement.“You said you wouldn't leave Deax Nui for anything short of a miracle. Or a disaster. Well, that's how we feel about the Industry Region.”“Eh, I guess...” Just then, Xinlo's meal came. He continued chatting with his two friends for a time while he ate, then bid them farewell and continued on his way back home. Unlocking the door, Xinlo hung his axe on the wall behind it, and headed up the staircase to the fourth floor deck. Reclining on his lounge chair, he stared up into the sky. The De-Matoran let out a long sigh, expelling the stress and disappointment of the day. Just another boring day in the life of Xinlo...Hope you enjoyed Chapter 1. The next ones should be longer, hopefully. Here's the review topic.

Edited by Xinlo: Spirit Of Sonics, Oct 15 2011 - 12:01 AM.

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#2 Offline The Xinlo

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Posted Oct 21 2011 - 05:20 PM

Chapter Two: Almost Ordinary

A lime-armoured Toa approached a small blue Matoran, holding what appeared to be another, miniature-sized, Toa. The being pushed the little Toa inside of the Matoran, who then unwillingly absorbed it. A Vorox Hound jumped out of the surrounding haze and pierced the lime-armoured Toa with its' stinger. The Vorox Hound then turned its' hate-filled gaze upon the Matoran, even as the body of the Toa collapsed on the ground. The Matoran tried to move, but the beast was too fast. Its' toothed maw came rushing at the helpless victim, ready for the kill-BEEP BEEP. BEEP BEEP.Xinlo bolted upright in his bed, a cold sweat dripping down his face.BEEP BEEP.“Oh, shut up!” He slammed his fist down on the top of the alarm beside his bed, and accidentally popped the glass cover off the front. He was too tired to care. Picking his Kanohi Kakama up off of the night stand and placing it on his face, he felt a little more awake.The De-Matoran walked to the kitchen and sat at his dining table, lost in thought. He had no clue what that dream meant, but he didn't think it was irrelevant. It seemed very symbolic, just what for, he didn't know.After a few minutes of brooding, he decided he was hungry, and got some food. It seemed tasteless and bland for some reason. Glancing at the clock, he noticed he was almost late for work. “D***.”Xinlo ran back to his bedroom and tried to grab all his stuff. He slipped on his boots and ran out the door, only to realize he had left his axe behind the door. Little did he know that short delay would change his future forever.After retrieving his axe, Xinlo caught a taxi to gain back some time. It'd take too long to walk at this point. He payed the driver, and they set off on the five minute trek. Xinlo checked his watch; he was going to be just on time. Kara would probably have his head on a platter for being late...For some reason it bothered him immensely when his secretary scrutinized him. Just as he had finally calmed down a little, a few things happened so quickly that the distracted Matoran could barely register them: He saw a lime blur streak across the window, the taxi driver swerve to avoid it, though it was long gone by the time he reacted, and then a sand-coloured, three-toed, clawed foot smash through the windshield. The taxi crashed into the side of a building, causing a pileup behind it. Xinlo quickly jumped out and helped the driver who, once out of the vehicle, stared in disbelief at something behind the De-Matoran.Unbelievably, impossibly, there was a fight in the middle of the street. Not just a fight though; those were average enough around the area. It was an elemental fight between a lime-hued Toa and a muscular, tan being, who looked like he had Vorox heads used as armour.The two fought viciously, with swords swinging, acid flying, and a barrage of lightning, fire, and stone. The Toa dodged the tan being's attacks, then raised his right arm, which held some sort of pistol. He pulled the trigger three times, and three balls of flaming plasma erupted from the end, striking their target in the chest with deadly accuracy. The tan being gasped and clutched his smoldering wound, and then passed out; most likely from the pain.Police forces arrived and cuffed him, as they tried to question the Toa about the incident. He answered a question or two, then caught Xinlo's eye. He looked surprised, almost frightened for a moment, but then seemed to gather himself together. Brushing the police off, he made his way toward Xinlo, looking determined.“Xinlo?” he asked, somewhat nervously.“Yes... that's me. Who are you?”“I do not believe it wise to discuss the matter in front of the public.” His eyes darted toward the onlooking crowd. “You need only know that my name is Zarzoz. I must explain myself to you; it is imperative. Continue on with your day, and speak to none of our encounter. When you are through with your business this evening, seek me out.”He handed Xinlo an electronic chip, and pushed a button on his left arm. Mechanical wings popped out of a compartment mounted on his back, accompanied by two small jets.“Farewell, Xinlo. I apologize for meeting in such an absurd manner, but you must look for me when your day is through: the future of Deax Nui depends on it.” And with those final words, he roared off into the air, leaving the blue Matoran stunned and speechless.* * *Xinlo walked into the waiting room of his office, covered in dust and muck, with a puzzled look on his face. Kara looked up from her work station, no doubt about to ream him out for being late. But when she saw the state he was in, simply opened her mouth and closed it again.Xinlo walked past her, giving her a vague nod, and into his back office. He sat down at his desk and looked at the chip, and figured it'd be best to wait until the end of the day to plug it in. Aside from the strange encounter earlier, the rest of his day was almost ordinary, with anxiety added to the mix for the upcoming “mission” he now had. It made him skittish, and he freaked his secretary out a little when she'd pop in to tell him something and he'd jump out of his chair.“Sorry... I'm feeling a bit off today.”“Yeah, okay...” And then she'd quickly disappear back into the waiting room. Xinlo felt just a bit cray after this happened a few times, but he couldn't really help it.Finally, the clock changed to quitting time, now all he had to do was wait for everyone else to leave, and he could start all this up. Kara was one of the last to leave, and she popped back into the office before hand.“You not leaving, sir?”'Uh... no, not just yet. I've got a few things to finish up, then I'll be heading out.” He gave her a reassuring smile, which made her squint skeptically, but she nodded and left. Xinlo took the chip out of his desk drawer, and reluctantly slid it into the card slot of his computing device.Review Topic

Chapter Three: An Undesirable Meddling

Xinlo watched in awe as the telescreen exploded with files, most named obscure things like “mis00124”. He had absolutely no clue what any of them meant, but then he saw a a pop-up containing four folders named “Xinlo”, “Nari”, “Teltus”, and “Kara”. He naturally clicked on his own folder, to see what was in it.He was quite surprised to see that there was hardly anything there, except for a short profile on him, and a map. Clicking on the map, Xinlo observed a bird's eye view of the Isle of Deax Nui, with a path, starting at the Deax Nui Foresters, Inc. Building. The De-Matoran quickly printed it out, and moved to pick it up from the printer, never bothering to click on the other folders.As he approached the machine, he saw a Matoran attempting to hide behind it. “Kara? What are you- are you snooping?”The Ta-Matoran got up, looking quite displeased, and glared at Xinlo. “No, I was simply...”“Snooping. Eavesdropping. Spying. Call it what you want, but it's all the same. Why, though?”“You were all out-of-sorts today,” she said defiantly. “I was was hoping I'd find out why.”The printer chose that time to finish the map, and Kara looked over. She grabbed it before Xinlo could object, and glanced over it. “A map, eh? To where?”Xinlo snatched it back from her. “I don't know yet. Why do you think I printed it out?”“Well, wherever your going, I'm going with you.”Xinlo nodded. He was too ticked off to tell her that he thought she was actually supposed to come. When he went to take the chip out of the computing device, he thought the windows were different than he had left them. There was a profile of a Matoran wearing blue armour and a Great Kanohi Ruru on the screen.“Huh? Strange... I don't think I clicked on any of the profiles.” He stared at the screen for a moment, then simply shrugged. “Must've glitched or something.” Xinlo pulled the chip out, and stuffed it in his coat pocket, along with the map. He attached his axe to his back, and gestured for Kara to follow him out of the building.* * *Volskith smiled to himself as he stared at the chip he held in his sand-coloured hand. It had been so easy to achieve his goal. He simply climbed up the side of the skyscraper to where he had been told the De-Matoran's office was, and copied the data from the Matoran's memory chip onto one of his own while said Matoran was distracted by an eavesdropper. He could've just taken the chip, but he was almost flawless in his criminal ways, and that would've leaven to big a trace. The Matoran may have noticed eventually if he had replaced it with a fake. It just wasn't worth the risk.The tan-armoured being had also covered up his clawed footprints with a simple wave of his hand. Occasionally, controlling sand came in handy for more than just suffocating victims. He had once suffocated a pack of Vorox Hounds with the sand used to build their underground home. Those same beasts were the fashion designers of his armour. Their skulls, anyway. Smiling yet again, he continued his trek to Le-Wahi. After all, he had acquired this information for a reason...* * *Oteyla walked along the bridge connecting her hut to her friend's. They were just having a little get together at her place, and things got a little bit out of control with some of the Le-Matoran guests. They always did love a good party.Although she was a Ce-Matoran, her people resided alongside the Le-Matoran and Cai-Matoran in the Le-Wahi. The island simply wasn't big enough to have so many different regions, therefor many Matoran had to group together. The only Matoran who got their own Wahi were the Ko-Matoran, as they were the only ones able to tolerate the freezing weather.The Le-Wahi residents still lived in huts, as the forest was not ideal for all the technology the rest of Deax Nui had. That, and they lived in the trees for the same reasons as the Le-Matoran, so they couldn't really have proper houses. When the Ce-Matoran had first settled, they had tried to live on the ground, but the forest floor was dangerous and toxic in spots. Not to mention filled with disgusting bugs. The only thing to worry about in the trees were some of the bigger birds.As she got back to her hut, she noticed the Lightstone was out. Oteyla always left her light on. She approached, curious, and opened the door.Inside was blacker than midnight, like a living shadow lurked within. It chilled the Ce-Matoran to the bone. As she reached inside for the light switch, two red eyes appeared in the middle of the blackness. The seemed strangely hypnotic. Volskith stepped out of the darkness, and touched the Ce-Matoran on the forehead. “You are Nari. You have never known any other name. You will never remember anything from this life. You begin anew.”The sand-coloured being then placed a blue Ruru at the female Matoran's side and disappeared in a puff of black smoke.Review Topic

Edited by Xinlo: Spirit Of Sonics, Oct 21 2011 - 05:15 PM.

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#3 Offline The Xinlo

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Posted Nov 23 2011 - 02:34 AM

Chapter Four: Confusion All 'Round

There are many questions in the universe that are quite difficult to answer. What came first: the Gukko or the egg? How does one kill a Protodite? How does one get along with a woman? Questions such as these had plagued Teltus for most of his life. He was a sort of private scholar, studying the questions no-one could, nor cared to answer. It usually made him the target of every joke. They claimed the usual; that the poor Matoran of Moonglow was wasting his life away, being a useless space consumer. But it's not like Ko-Wahi was his home, anyway. He just chose to live there 'cause it was quiet and he didn't have to talk to anyone.At the moment, though, it was far from the quiet oasis he came for. And the question facing him immediately was one he could easily answer: What does one do when they're being chased by a four-legged bovine-tiger thing?Answer: Run, hide, and pray.The young Ar-Matoran was only in the early running stage. He dashed through the streets, if you could really call them streets... more like deep paths in the snow where a street should be, trying not to be hit by the acidic slime the creature was-“Spitting at me! Help, it's spitting at me!” he screamed, watching from the corner of his eye as the spit destroyed the corner of a house, revealing the inhabitants. They seemed to be discussing how disrespectful the residents of the Wahi had become. I think spitting a hole in someone's house proves their point...* * *“No, I'm positive it's this building, Kara. Look, it even has the same number of floors.”“Xinlo, it's a map. Maps aren't exact, they just represent places. I'm telling you, the streets are all wrong. We were supposed to go left back there, I told you...”“No, I'm sure...” but as Xinlo looked at the map more carefully, he saw Kara was right. The streets looked nothing like the should, and the little picture actually had one less floor than the building before him in real life. “Alright, fine, we'll just go back to the split and turn left instead..." He paused. "Where... where are we on here?”“Oh, for Deccius' sake! Give me that map.”Xinlo gloomily handed the map to Kara, who shook her head, and looked it over.“We're right here,” she said as she pointed at a lonely street, flashing the De-Matoran with that withering look he feared so much, “en route to the waste disposal plant.”* * *The Ce-Matoran, "Nari", her mind told her, woke up in a strange hut. She had the odd sensation of the ground swaying slightly beneath her-She was a her, right? Yes, okay. There's a start.She sat up, and looked around. There was hardly anything in the hut but a bed, and a sack lying on the floor beside her.She overturned the pack, and examined its' contents. There was a few notes, some writing utensils, a book bound with a lock, and a strange rock wrapped up in a piece of paper. "Nari" grabbed it, ignoring the rest. It looked totally unfamiliar. Well, everything was unfamiliar, but this was even moreso. She felt some kind of unfamiliar familiarity with the other objects.Unwrapping the paper, she looked back and forth between the stone and what appeared to be a map. The stone glowed faintly with a bluish hue, and the map had a red line drawn on it. Deciding she had nothing better to do, she figured she'd follow it to wherever it led. Placing all the items back in the bag, she slung it across her shoulder and opened the door of the small hut.

Chapter Five: The Beginning

The old door creaked open quietly at Kara's touch, though it seemed loud in the darkening city. This wasn't usually a quiet part of town, but there was a huge birthday celebration in the square for one of Deax-Nui's wealthiest people. That left very few at home, making the place seem abandoned and creepy.“Why do the doors always creak?” Xinlo said, unnerved. “It's not even old...”“Shut up, Xinlo.”The two Matoran ventured inside cautiously, and tried to find a light switch.“So, Xinlo, I never actually asked you where you got this map. Or what it leads to.” “Well, it's a bit of an odd story. Short version is I got it from a Toa who told me to come find him after work hours.” replied Xinlo, finally finding the switch and flipping it on. “I have no clue why.”Kara was about to ask something else, but a loud crash from a few rooms over stopped her dead. She and Xinlo exchanged glances, and tiptoed through the rooms to where they suspected the noise to have originated. The building looked less creepy with the lights on, as it was just a warehouse of wooden boxes. But even still, both Matoran were pretty shaken up, and hid behind a few of said boxes. Xinlo peered over it, and caught a glimpse of a darker blue Matoran pulling itself off the floor and cursing. The De-Matoran decided to take a chance and speak.“Who are you?”The dark blue Matoran whirled around furiously, and accidentally tripping over its own feet, fell down again. “Holy sweet mother of all that is screwy!” She said, her voice revealing her gender in the dim lighting.“Calm down... we just want to know who you are.” Kara said with a soothing voice. Xinlo nodded stupidly.“Well... I don't exactly know. I just woke up in a hut with a map. I think my name's Nari.”Xinlo's eyes widened as he remembered the names from the file card. He decided not to mention it to the two women, but kept it in the forefront of his thoughts.“Well, hello Nari. I'm Xinlo. And this is my secretary, Kara.” he added hastily.After a slightly awkward moment, the three Matoran compared the maps. They were identical, just with the red lines leading back to different starting points. Both lines ended at the building the three now resided in, so they decided to just sit and wait.***Toa Zarzoz made one last pass over Ko-Wahi before deciding to look elsewhere. He'd been searching for almost an hour, and there was still no sign of the young Ar-Matoran. Maybe I should ask someone, though that's very un-professional...Seeing no other option as of yet, the lime-hued Toa landed down behind a snowbank and folded in his mechanical wings. As he stepped out on to the street, a white and sand-blue matoran slammed into him, knocking the little being backwards. The matoran quickly got up and ran behind the Toa, just as a huge grey-and-silver beast with four legs came around the bend at full speed.“Ylunginth...” The Toa muttered, then raised his hand. A ball of glowing acid formed at his fingertips, and the beast quickly stopped its charge. The Toa walked up to it, slowly, and studied it. Ylunginth were naturally quick-tempered creatures, but really only chased people when their homes had been invaded. “You, Matoran,”Zarzoz adressed the cowering little heap by the snow bank. “What's your name?”The Matoran stood up, dusting himself off, trying to keep a bit of dignity. “Teltus. What's yours?”“What were you doing before this creature chased you?” “Uh... I was just wandering. Trying to find a quiet place to sit and play my banjo.” The Ar-Matoran held up a severely damaged guitar-like instrument. “Then it just appeared from a cave thing and charged me.”“You must have trampled on its land. Not your fault, they're just very territorial rahi.” Zarzoz shot a small bolt of acid into the snow in front of the beast, which eyed him suspiciously, then turned around and went home. The Toa then turned his attention to the Matoran who still looked out of breath and rugged. “You say your name's Teltus?” The matoran nodded. “Alright then, I've been looking for you. Come on.”And with that, the acid-weilding being re-activated his wings and jets, scooped the matoran up, and took flight. He obviously ignored the Matoran's protests.***Just as the three persons in the warehouse were becoming wary, there was yet another sound, like a loud explosive hissing. “Fire. Sounds like booster jets to me,” Kara noticed. The three Matoran got up and went to investigate, but the source of the noise found them instead. “Toa Zarzoz!” Xinlo exclaimed, “And... Telsus?”“Teltus, actually.” The Ar-Matoran corrected Xinlo as he was finally put down on the ground again. He wobbled on the spot for a moment looking slightly green, then mustered a quiet “Do I know you?”“No, I don't believe we've me-”“So, you all must be wondering why you're here, no?” Zarzoz interrupted.“Well, yes, actually.” Nari said. “I'm kinda' wondering about everything at the moment.”“Alright, well, I've never been one for a whole ton of mysteries, so we'll get to the point.” The Toa of Acid held out his hand. 'I need your rocks. Except you two, Kara and teltus. I have yours here.” Xinlo and Nari handed the Toa the stones they had recieved so mysteriously, and Zarzoz added the other two. All four glowed in the same way, just with slightly different coloured light. “What are you-” Xinlo was cut off yet again by Zarzoz seemingly drilling into the four stones with a green beam that split into each. The stones glowed bright as the Toa handed them back to their respective Matoran. Simultaneously, all five beings fell to the ground. But while Zarzoz shrunk in size with a reserved look on his face, the four Matoran, glowing, grew and morphed with surprised expressions. Those expressions then turned to fear, then realization, as the glow wore off.“Well, stop laying around. Get up.”“You're a... a...” Xinlo stammered as he sat up.“Turaga,” Zarzoz finished. “Yes, I know. And you're all Toa now.”All four new Toa stood around with their mouths open slightly, taking everything in. Nari had transformed into a tall gold-and-dark blue hued Toa of Psionics, her pen having formed itself into a golden sowrd. Teltus was taller than Nari, and Xinlo for that matter, with a sand-blue suit and white armour. A giant pickaxe was strung across his back. “Where'd that come from?” He asked. “I had a banjo... shouldn't it have become like... an electric banjo or something?”Zarzoz waved him off, saying “Nobody really understands how this process works.”Xinlo looked at himself, and found that he was dressed in a black suit with blue armour. He had very elegant-looking shoulder pauldrons, and an ornated chestpiece. His small chopping hatchet had become a full-on war Axe, with a spiked design on the side. Kara wore a dark red suit, with coal-black armour that looked almost medieval. She held two sleek blades which seemed to distort ever so slightly with rippling waves. “Electricity...” She remarked, intrigued. “Must've transformed my defence tazer.”Everyone looked at her somewhat surprised.“What? A girl's gotta' defend herself if need be.”Zarzoz began a short speach about Toa stuff, involving the Toa Code, and the responsibilities they now had to the city, but Xinlo couldn't take his gaze away from Kara. The way her long blonde hair fell down her back and contrasted the dark tones of her armour... it was hypnotizing.“Right, so, you need to choose a leader.” This snapped the Toa of Sonics from his stupor.“What? Why?” He asked, fearing this might cause unnecessary competition between the new team.“I don't know, it's just how we do things. You wouldn't be very effective as a team if you all just did whatever you felt like,” the Turaga of Acid replied.“Right, well, I don't want to lead. I'm too clumsy and out of it, I'll just mess things up,” the Toa of Moonglow, Teltus, said quickly.“I don't remember anything,” Nari chimed in shyly, “So I don't think it'd be wise to have me be telling you what to do when I don't even know what city we're in.”“Hmm, that is very odd...” Zarzoz said to himself. “I'll have to do some investigation on that.”This left Kara and Xinlo to battle out who would lead, but the Toa of Fire made things simple by saying "Well, Xinlo's already had years of experience being in a position of control, so I say he should do it.”Xinlo's eyes widened with shock and slight horror, “But I don't want to lead... I got lost just following a map to this place! I swear, this is a bad idea.”“Well, Xin, none of us are really fit to lead here, but your our best choice,” Kara said reassuringly, then she added, “Besides, I'll be here to help you find the right place.”Xinlo scowled, but nodded in acceptance nonetheless. Then he noticed the other two Toa were supressing smiles. “What?” The sonics Toa asked innocently.“She calls you Xin?” The two couldn't help it any longer, and Nari started giggling.“Well... yeah. What's wrong with that? It's a decent nickname...”“Well can I call you Xin then?” Teltus asked, laughing. “Or even better, Xinny?”“No! Just, no.” Xinlo said miserably. “As my first act of being leader of this team, I forbid you to call me anything but Xinlo.”“I still get to call you Xin, right?” Kara said smoothly, the sound of her voice melting Xinlo's resolve.“Well... uh... um...”“I'll take that as a yes.” She said, and smiled innocently as Zarzoz called for everyone's attention again.

Edited by Xinlo: Spirit Of Sonics, Nov 23 2011 - 02:22 AM.

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#4 Offline The Xinlo

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Posted Nov 26 2011 - 02:13 AM

Chapter 6: Abecedarians

After Zarzoz had finished briefing the new Toa on their new responsibilities and duties to Deax-Nui, and to Murtua if ever needed, he let them off their leash to experiment with their powers. But being the wise Turaga he now was, the elder relocated the team to his personal training room in the basement of his home in the town of Artæva first. Which turned out to be very wise indeed, as they trashed everything in sight. Now he was determined to train them separately so they wouldn't feel embarrassed if they were outdone.“Try again, Kara.” The Turaga of Acid said as he pinched a smoldering hair on his head, extinguishing a little flame. “Controlled blast, remember.”Kara nodded sheepishly and attempted again, starting a fire on Zarzoz's head yet again.“I'm sorry!” She said, “This is so much harder than it looked when I saw other Toa do it!”“It comes with practice, Kara. Now, take a deep breath and calm yourself. Let's try this again.So Kara did as she was told, and tried again. This time she got a tiny little wisp of a flame in the palm of her hand, but when Zarzoz asked her to make it bigger, it flickered and exploded into a third large blast.“At this rate, I'll be bald by the end of the day.” The Turaga remarked, annoyance in his voice. “You're lucky this armour protects me from serious burns, girl, or I'd have throw you out last time. However, that's not the case. So try again.”

***

“So, Teltus, Nari... what do you guys do back home?” Xinlo asked while they sat outside the training room, awaiting their sessions.“Well... I don't know.” Nari replied quietly. “I mean, all I remember is waking up in a hut in Le-Wahi, with a bag and this notebook.”“Huh... maybe you fell and hit your head or something?” Teltus suggested. “Have you read that notebook? Maybe it has information about your past.”“I had thought about it, but I'm kinda' scared. I mean, reading about yourelf, the things you used to do but can't remember, that's a pretty scary idea. I'm thinking I'll just start fresh now that I'm a Toa.”At that moment, the door to the training room opened, and a depressed looking Kara stepped out. As she sat down, Zarzoz was visible in the background, badly burned and cursing.“Nari... you're turn.” The Turaga said from the room. Xinlo thought he heard a quiet “Deccius help me” from the elder, but it could've been his imagination.

***

By the time Xinlo's turn came around, the poor Turaga had reached his patience limit. He was ranting on about how useless of a team they were, and what kind of Toa of Fire couldn't even control a flame, etc. He knew it wasn't their fault, but he'd been injured so much he couldn't take it anymore. So Xinlo ended up not getting a turn.“All of you... go sleep or something.” Zarzoz said wearily as he pinched the bridge of his nose. “I'll get to you tomorrow, Xinlo, and we'll see what new ways you can find to cause me pain.”Tired and miserable, the four Toa headed home. Teltus, who was the least disheartened from the day's experience, piped up. “Well, as horrid of a team as we may be, we still need a name.”All four Toa thought as they walked, until Nari said, “What about the Toa Kakama? Y'know, with Xinlo's mask being the face of our team and all...”“Nah, too unoriginal. We need something that'll make us stand out.” Kara replied.“Well, how's Toa Deax? That was all the rage way back when, naming yourself after your home island.”“Too oldschool.” Nari disagreed, “We need something that fits with our scenario.”“How about Toa Artæva?” Teltus spoke up again. “Y'know, with most of our existence as a Toa being spent in this little town, why not name ourselves in its honour?”“I like the sound of it, actually.” Xinlo said. “Makes us sound way more heroic than we deserve.”Kara looked at Teltus and said, “You had that in mind this entire time, didn't you? You just started this conversation so you could suggest a name.”“Well...” Teltus laughed, “Yeah, pretty much. So is that it then? We're officially the Toa Artæva?”“I guess so.” Xinlo said. Nari and Kara agreed.The four Toa walked the rest of the way back in silence, before splitting up and heading for their own homes. Xinlo passed by “Olam's 'Ole”, and decided he wanted to go have a drink in the bar section. Besides, maybe Eek and Touran were still in town. As he opened the door and the little bell at the top rang, Olam, the bartender, looked up from his conversation with a customer as he always did. He was about to yell a greeting, then got a good look at the figure walking through the doorway.“Xinlo?”“Um... yeah.” Xinlo replied awkwardly, all eyes on him, mouths gaping. “What's new?”

***

Kara opened the now almost too small doorway to her home in Ta-Wahi. All the districts in Deax-Nui were fairly close together, so it wasn't a super long walk to most of them. The inhabitants generally walked everywhere. Relaxing a bit from the previous tension of “training”, she stripped off her armour by her bedside and admired the dark red suit she wore in a mirror over her dresser. She was about six-foot-six, slightly shorter than an average Toa. Her skin was pale, as it had been when she was a Matoran, but her eyes now had a strange orange glow to them. Her mid-back-length blonde hair was as golden as ever, and it looked beautiful in contrast to her dark Toa colours.“Well, Kara...” She addressed her reflection, “Gotta' admit, you look sexy.”The Toa of Fire smiled to herself while she changed into her nightclothes and crawled into bed. As strange and most likely difficult as the Toa path would be, she decided it was worth it in the end. Now she would have stories to tell her friends that didn't involve keeping Xinlo awake at his desk. Besides, the improvements to her womanly curves were quite welcome.

***

The air was cold and harsh for a summer night, and the window to Zarzoz's bedroom was locked tight. This was not unusual, as the now-Turaga despised the cold and always made sure to keep his windows and doors closed at night. But just then, he thought he heard a strange noise coming from outside. Sort of like a heavy clicking on the side of the house. Probably just a bird...But his curiosity had always gotten the better of him, and “probably” just wouldn't do. The Turaga opened the window to see what was making such an odd noise, the cold air rushing in and giving him a chill. As he poked his head out to get a good look around, he felt something hit his temple. Then the world went black.

Chapter 7: Worst Day Ever

“So I said, 'Yeah, I'll lead this amazing team. I'm sure we'll all get along fantastically.'” Xinlo said to a small crowd, his voice slurring. “They all idolize me, you know. Especially Kara; think she's got her eye on-”The new Toa of Sonics fell sideways off his chair at the bar section of Olam's 'Ole, and upon hitting the floor, woke up again.“What? Hey- haha, who wants another drink!?”Olam, the bartender/chief chef had been Xinlo's friend for as long as either of them could remember. Yet, in all that time, the elder Matoran had never seen the guy touch alcohol, let alone drink glass after glass. Knowing his friend was about another glass away from completely losing sense, he intervened.“Xinlo, I really think you should go home, man. I'll take you back myself, if you'd like.”The Toa saw sense for a moment, and mumbled, “Yeah, I think you're right. Rough day...”And then he blacked out.When the Toa of Sonics woke up, he was lying in his bed at home, which he no longer fit in. The part of his brain that wasn't pulsing in agony remarked, Olam must've got in with my keys... He absently touched his belt to make sure they were there. After glancing at the time, which happened to be two o'clock in the morning, he rolled over and buried his head under the pillow.

* * *

Three Toa Artæva stood waiting outside Zarzoz's personal training center. They had been waiting for over an hour to be let in, and their new leader, Xinlo, hadn't show up yet either.Finally, Kara couldn't wait any longer.“Alright, well... Nari, Teltus, you two see if you can get a hold of Zarzoz. I'll go check Xinlo's house; he has a habit of sleeping through important events.”The other two nodded, and began trying to find a paging panel or doorbell as Kara headed to the Toa of Sonics' home.As the Toa of Fire approached the fairly large dwelling, she noticed the blinds were drawn over every window. “I knew it,” she mumbled to herself. She knocked on the door a couple times, loudly, to no answer.After a few seconds waiting, she banged with both fists against the door and yelled “Xinlo! Wake up!” as loud as she could. A few of the neighbours looked at her reproachfully, whom she ignored. After what seemed like an eternity, the former De-Matoran answered the door. He was wearing the same getup as the day before, but there were stains all over, and his armour was all crooked. On top of that, his hair was flattened on one side, making his head appear to have a bulge on the other, and his eyes were sunken with dark circles under them.“What the heck happened to you?” Kara exclaimed, taking it all in with shock.“Shhhhhhh!” Xinlo whispered harshly in response. “Why do you have to be so loud?”Clutching his head with one hand, he turned around and gestured for Kara to come inside with the other. “And why are you here? It's the weekend, I'm allowed to sleep in... if you can call this sleeping.”The blue Toa sat down on his living room couch and sighed.“You were supposed to meet us at the training facility almost two hours ago. What happened to you?”“I just had a little fun last night... which I'm seriously starting to regret. Can't we put this training stuff off for a few days? It's a bit of a shock, y'know, to just become a Toa like that.” He snapped his fingers for emphasis, then whimpered and clasped his head tighter.“Look, Xin, I don't know what you did to yourself, or why, but you need to get a grip, okay? We kinda' need our leader there with us.” And then, just at that moment, a voice appeared in both Toa's heads.“Um... I'm not sure if this is working, but, uh... Xinlo, Kara, it's Nari. We can't find Zarzoz anywhere. We managed to get inside his house, and we found a note. It's pretty silly, but he's been kidnapped. And whoever did it wants to be followed, I think. They left an extremely obvious trail. And, well, a note.”“Wow... guess she really is a Toa of Psionics.” the Fire Toa said. “And fairly skilled for such a short time of practice.”Xinlo simply glared at her, but after awhile she was beginning to think he wasn't actually seeing her.“So, mister leader man, are you coming?”Xinlo snapped out of his daze, and said, “Yeah, I guess. Though I may not survive the trip. I swear, never again will I drink. Ever.”Kara laughed, which made Xinlo cringe, then said, “You have any coffee? It does wonders for hangovers, at least for me.”“Yeah... why didn't I think of that? I'll... go make some.” The Toa of Sonics was about to get up, but Kara put a hand on his shoulder. “Let me. Where is it?”“Oh... um... top shelf on the right. Thanks.”A few minutes after the coffee, Xinlo was much more presentable. He still had circles under his eyes, and still had stains on his suit, but his hair was combed and his armour straightened. Most importantly though, his headache was gone. He felt much better.“Thanks a ton for your help, Kara. This has been the worst day ever; I've never done anything of the like before. Guess I just kinda' freaked out about the whole Toa thing.”“Hey, it's no problem. I've had plenty of times like that.” The Toa of Fire stood uncomfortably for a second as Xinlo zoned out again, and then said, “So, uh... we should go. The others are waiting.”“What? Yeah, sorry. Just... daydreaming.” The De-Toa grabbed his new axe from beside his bed, his Kanohi from the night table, and headed out the door, Kara right behind.

* * *

Volskith walked into the large chamber quite confidently. He was never one to fear his superiors – he felt he could handle himself in a fight against anyone. And if he did happen to die, he knew it would not be a backstabbing “friend” who caused it. So with this reasoning, when his “co-worker” appeared out of the shadows, a sight which would chill many with fright had no effect upon him.“I did as you asked. The Turaga is here.” The tan-armoured villain threw a large rock with little air holes at the being's feet, which shattered into sand on impact with the ground. A lime-armoured Turaga was revealed, curled up and choking.“Very good, Volskith. I'm quite glad you decided to join my little endeavour.”“The way I see it, if you you fail, there'll be someone to carry on your work. I do think it's a great idea.”“As do I. Now, please see to it that this... Turaga... is locked up good and tight. And take his mask.”

Edited by Xinlo: Spirit Of Sonics, Nov 26 2011 - 02:14 AM.

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