The Color of Blood Chapter 5
By Brady Bryner, Bill Shofstall, & Anthony McKinley
Unknown, Temple 9:54 PM July 14
Tifa got up and stared long at the statues. Anthony and Sephiroth got up as well and walked toward them. Anthony looked very long and hard at a statue that reminded him very much of his father. When he turned, Tifa and Sephiroth were gone. He ran down the hall into the temple. "Guys!?! Where are you!?!"
"In here..." It sounded like Tifa. Anthony walked into a room of the temple, where Tifa stood looking down at a stone slab, as far as Anthony could tell. He tapped her on the shoulder. When she turned, it was like Tifa, but distorted. Her face was longer with two cruel fangs. Quickly the creature changed into a huge creature with bulging purple viens and muscles. The eyes were blood red and the fangs grew longer and curled around its bottom lip. It had nine fingers on each hand, all of them with a spiraled yellow claw.
Anthony fell backward, tripping and fumbling as he tried to remove his sword. "Deeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeemn..." He dropped his mouth open as he saw the being in its full form. "Where the hell am I!?!" He dived out of the room. "This is can't get worse..." He ran through the temple until he tripped in a room. The wall slammed up behind him. "What the..." He flipped out his PRS and tried to contact Tifa. "Hey! This is real bad..." Sand began filling the room. "THIS IS REAL FUCKING BAD!" Something moved in the sand. "No..." A huge serpent popped its head out from the dirt. "No! NO! OH DAMN!" He had practiced with his sword, and was quite able to handle it, so he tried his best to fight it back. "Okay you sumuna beech'..." It struck at him, missing and slamming into the wall. Shaking its head, again the serpent prepared to strike. Anthony slashed at it, sending a deep gash into its under belly. It struck again, sinking its fangs into his arm. He pulled the creature's head out of his arm and fell back. "Do you have any idea how much that stings, you inconsiderate asshole?"
They both struck at the same time. Anthony threw himself toward the creature just as it struck again. Anthony cut its head off, a grayish blood gushing from the veins as the head hit the sand. Anthony struggled up further in the sand. Just as he was about to get into a hole to get out, the head surfaced and shrieked at him. With that, it fired a red beam of light from its eyes at him. "Damn it! Who made these fucking rules up!" Anthony grabbed the head of the creature and pointed it away from him, as it continued firing the beams of heat wildly. He pulled himself up into the tunnel and crawled through it. Just big enough for him to keep moving. Sand began pouring into the hole as well. Anthony jammed his sword through the creatures head and threw it back into the sand. He finally reached a light at the end. Another pit. Anthony shook his head and began climbing down on cracks in the wall. The pit had to be at least forty feet deep. Finally reaching the bottom, he exited from a passage like the one he had entered. The door slammed up behind him. Anthony didn't care. It was far better then having to be back in another pit with another one of those creatures. Or maybe not. The huge demon creature stomped down through the halls slowly. Anthony could hear the heavy foot steps. The monsters blood red eyes looked down at him. Anthony cowered pathetically. "Let me back in!" He began kicking the door. The creature picked him up and began squeezing his head, trying to crush it. "Oh big ugly!" He kicked it in the stomach and jammed his sword through it. He picked out his PRS as he defended with one hand. "Tifa! I'm killing something..." He thrust his sword forward and cut off its left arm. "...ugly!"
"Tony! Where are you?"
"I don't know!" He spun under the sweep of its claws and brought the blade into its stomach. "Die..." He jammed the sword through its neck, blood gushing over the blade and onto the ground. "Die... Please God... Die..." He swung his sword around in a circle and cut the beast in half. The bottom half stopped moving, but the top half dragged itself by one arm after him, bleeding. He fell back against a pedestal, dropping his sword. The demon crushed the blade. "Oh DAMN!" He grabbed the sword on the pedestal. It was large, two-handed. He brought the blade down onto the creature's head, cutting it in half. The creature finally slumped dead. "Ya' daaaaaaaaaaamn skippy!" He looked at the sword. It had a great, shimmering blade, about five feet in length. The hilt was about an extra half foot. It had several diamonds imbedded into its sides, and was gilded. At the left and the right sides of the top of the hilt were two spikes pointing slightly to the sides of the blade. He placed both of his hands around the hilt and screamed as his mind flashed with images. Images like those which Sephiroth had recieved when he found the Masamune. He was holding the Claymore. He found the sheath laying next to where he had picked it up. He threw off his old sheath and laced the new sheath over his back, sliding HIS sword into it. He found his PRS laying on the ground next to the dead demon. He called Sephiroth and Tifa, who were both now at the main hall.
"Where were you, Tony?" Anthony recounted the story, except where he had gotten the sword.
"Where did you two go?"
"No where. We stayed here." Anthony turned toward the exit.
"Follow me." He ran toward the exit and jumped into it. He disappeared in a water-like ripple. Tifa and Sephiroth followed. Tifa fell into Reeve's office, Anthony in Cosmo Canyon, and Sephiroth in the Asgar Shinra building.
Shinra Building, Reeve's Office 9:32 AM July 15
Tifa awoke. No idea how long it had been. She looked around. Reeve's office. She sighed calmly. Reeve entered from the elevator, back from getting coffee. "Tifa?"
"How'd you get here? You're supposed to be in Cetralin."
"I... I wanted to surprise you?"
"And that you did. Now tell me, how'd you get here."
"Well... It is a real long story." She told him the whole story, start to finish. Several hours had passed since she started the story.
"That certainly was...extensive." He kissed her. "Good to see you back though. I've been having a hard week."
"I never thought this job could be so hard... I never thought I'd have to go to war. I never thought it would require so much planing. Well... At least we got Destilian back..."
"Yes. Cait was in the first wave. Got banged up pretty bad, but he's alright."
"Good." She'd grown quite fond of Cait.
"Something odd has been happening since last night."
"At one point during the night, the lifestream all focused at one point in Cetralin. The same point as the tomb. Something must have triggered it. With the lifestream came several large entities. As of yet, we don't know what they were, or what their purpose is."
Golden City, Front Line 12:45 PM July 15
"You will come back alive. You will not die." Cait Sith, already back to his soldiers. Still being partially robotic had advantages in the way of healing. "I know... It is wierd to take orders from me...but you do. Just come back alive. Remember that we always win. We don't lose. We can't." His soldiers prepared their weapons. Cait tapped his moogle, testing the laser rifle that had been placed in his chest. "Lets kick some ass." It was an authorized defense of the Golden City. In the deserts outside of the Gold Saucer, the Golden City lay with weak defenses. Cait was told to keep his troops in this city to protect it. His soldiers mobilized. Within moments, enemy opposition would drill into the area. Cait held his breath. Within moments, an airship flew over head. Cait ordered a scan of the ship.
"No defense systems... It must be a frieghter."
"Can we intercept from the Gold Saucer?"
"I think." The fellow officer gave orders to intercept the ship. When the ship was secured a boarding team of ten soldiers entered. Minutes later, a crackle came over Cait's speaker.
"We found some rations, weapons, a few porn mags, some popcorn, and a little black box. No soldiers, just the crew and twelve passengers."
"Take everything in their possession, arrest the crew and passengers and get any information that can help us. Then give them their ship and supplies that can not aid us, and let them go."
"Yes, sir." They did as he said. They yeilded little information except that Rufus was amassing many military airships and planes in Corel.
"Okay! I want you to intercept any frieghter ship that comes from Corel, and keep track of all transport planes as far as Junon." Several hours later, the airship lifted off. Cait still waited for the attack. Finally, twelve tanks and about five-hundred chocobo mounted soldiers came speeding over a hill toward the desert city. "Fire at will..." Cait's men fired first, and the new rocket defense systems on the city walls began firing. The machine gun towers began blazing, beams of light and bullets flying. The tanks posed the largest threat, so Cait ordered their immediate destruction. Soon, the tanks were nothing more then heaps of burning metal. The soldiers that had come over the hill were not prepared for Cait's strong opposition. "Causalty report." Cait turned on his log. "Colonel Pascall...one-hundred percent dead. Myself...zero percent dead OR wounded." Cait had planned every inch of the defense. The placement of weapons. The attack and defense pattern. It was perfect. None of his men had been even shot at, but all of the enemy force had been killed. He knew today well. Rufus and Reeve had declared war against eachother and were meeting to discuss terms in Kalm.
Kalm, Town Square 2:00 PM July 15
Rufus's ship had landed several miles away. A chocobo was seen speeding toward the town. Reeve was sitting in a chair, direct oppisite of where Rufus was soon sitting. "Rufus... Do you have a pen?"
"Yes... Are you ready to begin the terms?" Reeve removed a long list.
"This is all we have already worked out... In the case of your death, you must have an order prepared to be issued stating surrender of all cities, persons, technologies, and all items of interest if you do not appoint a succesor. Should you surrender during your term, all weapons, narcotics, scientific facilities, and residential claim areas must be ordered to swear feality to the Shinra Electric and Power Corporation and all subsidiaries there of."
"Very well. Only if you agree to my terms of victory. Should you surrender, the presidency of the Shinra Corporation, and all subsidiaries will be mine to appoint officials to. However, in the event of your death, should no succesor have been appointed, all items of interest and company stock shall be given to me, unless it is held by a non-Shinra personal civilians."
"I agree to those terms. In the event of my surrender, myself and NO Shinra personal currently under my employment may be imprisoned or executed. If you surrender, the same fate will come to your employees. Niether of us shall use implements of torture to extract information of POWs. Agreed?"
"Agreed." They shook hands. "May the best man..." Rufus pricked Reeve with his pen. "...win..."
"What the hell was that?"
"A going away present." Rufus mounted his chocobo and rode back to his airship. Reeve inspected the blood from his arm. He found a small white stone like object. Crack. He was trying to get Reeve so intoxicated so he may appeared insane in front of all of his employees. Reeve knew that trick. Alexander Shinra had did it to his father. Reeve found Alexander's log of events he had kept since he was a boy. He put narcotics into his father's drink. However, instead of the desired effect, the old man's heart exploded.
Falcon, Bridge 10:32 PM July 15
Malcolm almost fell asleep on the bridge of his own ship. Jenna and Albert were sharing a cup of coffee. Alicia was asleep on the floor of the bridge. Malcolm got up and stared over the edge of the bridge, far to the ground below. He could see red flashes near the Gold Saucer and Golden City. "Celebration is a little late..." A red streak shot past his face, almost scrapping the hull of the ship. "Oh damn..." He turned to a crew man. "Cut the engines! Man the gun ports! Get moving!" As quickly as possible, all of these operations were done. "Get closer to the city! Identify what is going on!" The ship started to lower itself, when a huge dragon with one eye gripped the hull. "Shit!"
Alicia woke up and grabbed a gun as soon as one was within reach. "What the fuck is that!?!" She fell backward against a pole.
"Hit the engines! Get us out of here!" The ship rocked to the side, tossing Malcolm into the main control panel. "Gyah! Damn!" He shot at the dragon and threw his emptied gun at it. He looked for the emergency escape lever, not able to find it. He grabbed a random cord and pulled it. With that, a powerful blast of flames and heat sent the ship flying wildly at Corel. Malcolm manually pulled it away, gun fire riddling it. The dragon spouted flames at the ship, chasing it. Tiamat. More gun fire blared off, piercing Tiamat, but not killing him. It made him angrier. "Get whoever you can off the ship! I'm going to try something!" Many crew members grabbed parachutes and jumped off of the ship. Alicia, Jenna, and Albert stayed. The ship began to catch fire. "DAMN!" Alicia was knocked off during an explosion. She held onto a pole at the bottom of the ship, crying as it burned her hand.
"Don't let go... Don't look down... Just hold on a little longer..." Another explosion shook her loose and sent her spiraling to the ground below. Meanwhile, Jenna, Malcolm, and Albert were fighting the controls to the doomed ship and trying to fight off the dragon. Malcolm stared at Corel.
"You two religous?" Jenna nodded.
"I'm an atheist." Albert jumped back from Tiamat, as he cut a hole through his shirt, grazing him. "I can learn though!"
"Learn quick, damn it!" Malcolm piloted his ship toward a large reactor in Corel. "You're both welcome to bail out now... But if you don't..." The two nodded at him.
"Well... Learn to be a man." Albert shot Tiamat with a shotgun.
"I dunno about bein' a man, but I get your drift." Jenna held her breath. Both were surprisingly calm. The reactor grew closer, and many cannons aimed at the ship. The order was given, and the cannons fired. The back end of the ship caught ablaze, the front end tossing violently back and forth.
"It's judgement day..." The ship crashed and exploded in the reactor. The cannons exploded as well, repelling Tiamat. Tiamat snarled evilly and flew straight up, and then down into the ocean, several miles away. Twelve-hundred thousand people died in the explosion. Many were soldiers, about a fourth of them were civilians. Twelve others died. Nine crew members who hid in fear on the ship, and Albert, Malcolm, and Jenna.
Golden City, Battle Front 2:34 PM July 16
Alicia awoke, bleeding from her forehead. She was in a tent, a cloth wrapped around her head and her hands bandaged. Besides her forehead and her hands, she was fine. Her vision was blurred though. A short fat man entered the tent. "Hello? Hello?" She tried to open her eyes further. "You alive, kid?"
"Huh? Yeah. I'm fine...I think..."
"You'll be fine." Her vision began to come around. She saw instead of a short fat man, a cat on top of a large animal.
"Am I dead?"
"I already asked you that. You're quite alive, and very lucky."
"God... I'm going crazy."
"Aren't we all?"
"Where am I?"
"The Golden City, the gates. You're in our last medical tent."
"The Falcon!" She shot up in bed.
"Yeah! Malcolm's airship! I remember it was attacked by a big dragon, and then it was being ripped apart...and I fell off..."
"The Falcon? Just a second." Cait turned on a computer and began typing. "Says here that the Falcon was destroyed last night when it crashed into the Corel central energy supply. Yup. Took out the whole reactor and half the sector. Also wiped out almost fourty-three percent of the city defenses."
"What about Malcolm, and the crew?"
"According to the report, of thirty crew members, seventeen escaped."
"I'm a crew member. That should be eighteen."
"Well... Doesn't matter. Of those seventeen, fifteen were killed, and the other two were captured." Alicia's face fell to a state of shock. She knew the three people she had been working with were dead. Incinerated.
"You're the last one alive and free. Be happy."
"I... Without them... I can't make the money to rebuild Wutai."
"Don't worry about that. Rufus Shinra already did it." Rufus had rebuilt Wutai, Cait just finding out about it. Reeve had been informed, and wondered why sattelites never picked up the city. Reeve's plan was about to take place.
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