By Taran

A star in the distance tightened, drawing all of its fire closer towards the core, as if taking in a breath. It held, for a moment or two, and then exhaled, releasing all of its energy in a magnificent blinding flash that bathed the solar system with its luminescence. But to the three travelers, such supernovas had lost their rarity, and perhaps with that, their beauty. Millions of years can do that.

They floated there, among the stars, with no particular destination. They had tried settling down once, aeons ago. It was a young, lush planet, full of life. Untouched by the coldness some corners of the galaxy had to offer. Life flourished there, and for a time, so did the travelers. The two children could have stayed, but the eldest… she could never be content until they found the rest of their race. So again they took to the stars and resumed their search.

“Masa, it’s my turn next to the window.”

“Is not, Mune. I’ve only been here for ninety-nine blips. I’ve got one more left.”

“Nu uh, it was one hundred blips. I counted.”

“Well you must have lost count, it’s only been ninety nine.” The small vessel had the bare necessities for space travel. Further, the interior wasn’t much to look at. The controls were basic, nothing too flashy. It was quiet too, except for the soft blip of the radar. “There, that was a hundred. Go ahead.”

“Okay, but I get one hundred and one pulses, just like you did.”

“No way, I had a hundred pulses, even, same as always.”

“Will you two be quiet? I think I’ve got something.”

“Sorry Doreen… What did you get?”

“I’m not sure but… yes, yes it is! It’s a signal from one of the other escape pods! It’s on a small planet about a year from here.”

“How did it get way out here?”

“Mune! Don’t you remember our plan? Spiral outward so we were careful not to miss anyone? The planet is only a few hundred years from Merusira.”

“Oh… oh yeah. Thanks big sister.”

“Okay then, this is it… soon we’ll be there…”

The Citra Cannon searched the skies, drew power, and fired. A huge incoming meteor was hit, and destroyed. “Target hit, sire! The cannon is recharging.”

“Good. Set the Asura and Koutesu cannons to alternating fire.”

“Yes sire.”

Alarms were sounding throughout a large chamber, warning them to escape as soon as possible. But the soldiers’ stayed their ground and focused on controlling the cannons, the planet’s last line of defense against the coming apocalypse. Merusira’s atmosphere lit up in flames. A crimson fire consumed the sky, falling, pushing downward, towards the planet. Lances of light shot up from the surface, driving back the onslaught, but it was no use. “They’re drawing closer, sire. Shields are down to 20 percent! What do we do!?”

“Transfer all power from the targeting sensors to the shields. Then… make to the Exodus Pods… Damn the Lavoids…”

A crowd gathered under the Citra Cannon watched as a group of soldiers ran to its base in an attempt to control it manually. Gears turned, power cells began to glow brilliantly, the barrel pulled in. “Ready to fire!” One soldier took aim at a fast approaching meteor and pulled his trigger. The massive gun let out a blast of energy large enough to envelope a house. The crowd cheered as another one was disintegrated. “Tell them to get out of here!” the commanding officer screamed. “The shield won’t hold much longer!”

Masses dispersed around her. Doreen gazed at the sky. Acid rain was pouring down hard, but splashed against a luminescent bubble around the city. But the canopy began to flicker and soon no longer protected them. A meteor hurdled towards the surface and impacted into the Citra Cannon. Pieces of machinery and stone quaked outward like a ripple in a pool of water. Someone grabbed up Doreen just as a mess of wreckage was about to come down on her. Large eyes turned gratefully towards her savior. “Thank you, Daddy!”

“Of course dear.” Her father replied.

“Daddy, is this the ‘Invasion?’”

He sighed. “Yes… it is…” He was briefly distracted, watching the ‘meteor’ open its huge eye, rise to its feet, and begin unleashing relentless flames, but then turned back to his daughter. “Do you remember what to do?”

Doreen recited what she had been told: “Find your brothers and go to our escape pod.”

“Do you know where it is?” Doreen nodded. “Good girl.”

“Are you coming daddy?”

Another voice managed to overcome the havoc of the attack. “Mori! Care to give me a hand?”

“One moment, Kiyo.” Doreen’s father turned back to her. “I’ll join you soon, okay? Now run. Hurry!” Doreen did as told: she ran. She stopped briefly to watch Kiyo and her father battle against a giant creature blazing in flames. They seemed to be winning though, and so, she ran again. Her brothers were not too difficult to find. It was reaching the pod that proved a challenge. They had to wade through a crowd frantically searching for their own appointed Exodus Pods. Finally they made it and Doreen quickly pushed in Masa, then Mune, jumped in herself, and waited. Years of preparations for this, added to their young naivety, disabled Masa and Mune from realizing what was really going on. Doreen however, was terribly afraid. Chaos was working overtime on the outside. Everything was crashing down around them. Mori, their father, never met them at the pod. Someone hit the jettison override, and the three were hurled into space.

Looking down from the window Doreen watched her planet, her home, be consumed by a red glow. For days momentum carried them further into the blackness. It grew ever fainter, but Doreen didn’t lose sight of that eerie fire. Finally, the fire turned into a blaze and exploded. The wake pushed the small pod further into oblivion. A small tear ran down Doreen’s sharp cheek. “Goodbye daddy… goodbye Merusira…” And so she, they all, said “goodbye” to their planet.

A small tear ran down Doreen’s sharp cheek. She was remembering. “Soon we’ll be there…” Its hope made the year seem slower than a hundred of the hopeless ones, but eventually it passed. Finally they prepared to land. Masa and Mune took care of the preparations for entry into the small atmosphere. So a shooting star fell to the earth, crashed and plowed though a hundred feet of snow, and stopped. For the first time in a long time the door to the pod opened with a hiss of airtight pressure. Doreen was the first to set a foot on the cold ground. “Alright, let’s find them.”

A day of tracing the signal led them on a long trek through the harsh, barren terrain. For a time Masa and Mune enjoyed playing in the snow. It had been aeons since they had been on a planet, and they were glad to be out of the pod. This world however, soon became a new monotony. The snow was thick, covered everything, and stretched as far as they could see. Why would anyone come to this place?

At last they found a landmark that broke the blank horizon. A large mountain appeared in the distance; the signal led them towards it. Night was fast approaching though; luckily they found a cave at the base of the mountain, in which they took refuge.

For all of them it was a sleepless night, but Doreen’s dreams were particularly haunting. The monster was there. The demon, the Lavoid. Two warriors fought the beast amongst the wreckage of Merusira, Miro, her father, and Kiyo. The three battled fiercely, but the two defenders couldn’t seem to harm the Lavoid. Everything was engulfed in flames and the creature’s needles. Then, in a flash of white light, two became one, and where the Musirans stood there was now one large warrior, rippling with muscles and power. This new combatant, this MuSiravos, unleashed blades of energy against the Lavoid and eventually slayed it. Their victory, however, was short lived as two more meteors impacted around them, rose, and began to attack. The MuSiravos fought as well as he could was overcome, fell into a beam from one Lavoid’s eye, and was promptly destroyed.

Doreen woke with a start. She’d had the same dream hundreds of times, but it never ceased to bring her to a sweat. Masa and Mune had confessed the same vision before, but seemed to be sleeping peacefully enough. Doreen hugged her knees and shivered in the dark night. “Daddy…”

Dawn assailed the cave before any of them were ready. Nevertheless they awoke and resumed their journey. The signal was strong near the mountain and it wasn’t long until they were all standing where it seemed to be drawing them to. “The signal’s definitely coming from right here.” Masa told them. They were, however, standing in the center of a flatland, white in every direction. “Well, that’s what the tracer says anyway.”

Mune interjected the obvious. “There’s nothing here, brother.”

“Down.” The two brothers nodded and began removing the snow. After snow came the earth. Then, five feet later, they uncovered flat stone. Masa and Mune eagerly jumped down the hole they had created. Mune focused and released a whirlwind that cleared the dirt and snow off a monumentus circle of flat stone. The large platform seemed to be one solid block of rock, carved smooth. A mural was carved into the face of the slab.

All their eyes fell to one image. It was a Lavoid. Doreen fell to her knees and cried out. “This… this is a grave…”

White snow fell, but soon turned to stars. The gray sky turned to the depths of space. The three travelers found themselves atop a large stone platform in the midst of a void. Someone appeared, vaguely, at the edge of the circle. His image was faint, but they could tell he was a Musiran. He was tall, his face seemed wise, and his voice echoed a chorus of power. For all of them it was comforting to see another of their race. “We came to this planet aeons ago. After… after the destruction of Merusira. For years we were here, living with them, teaching them. ” As he spoke he walked around the plate, spiraling inward, narrating the mural. “But one day, 65 million years ago, we spotted a red star in the heavens. It was a Lavoid. It came to kill us… We tried to fight it, but we were not strong enough. ” By this time he was standing with them. “They won’t stop, the Lavoids. Not until every last one of us are destroyed…

Doreen looked up at him with tears in her eyes. “What can we do?”

“Take heart, my child.” The soothing voice came from behind. It was Mori’s.

Doreen whirled around. “Daddy!” Quickly she embraced him, afraid he would disappear at any second. Masa and Mune joined in.

“It’s good to see you all. Now, listen.” They all turned again to the other Musiran.

There is hope! This planet… it has the power to defeat the Lavoids! Stay here, live with these people, help them. And one day, a time will come… when you and they… may cure the world… of the Lavoid…

The stars were beginning to fall faster, the blackness was lightening. The Musiran was fading, and gone. Miro as well. “Daddy!”

“I love you all…”

Doreen, Masa, and Mune were left alone in the snow. It was quite for a time, until one spoke up. “What now?”

“You heard them.” Doreen answered. “Now we save the world.”

Taran's Fanfiction