Shadow of Culldrome
|This tale has been told! It's done!|
|Shadow of Culldrome|
|Part of The Epic Adelie Story, Culldrome Civil War|
| The Allies -
The Axle Powers (provided aid)
| The Confederacy - |
Confederacy of Independent Culldrome
Porcyal Order Confederate Allies -
| Steven Snowen
King Carlos Goberna
| Chairman Dux |
| 1,200,000 troops
| 700,000 troops |
|600,000 troops||600,000 troops|
|Part of TEAS|
|Outline of the Culldrome Isles|
Nightmare of Culldrome
Battle of Culldrome
Shadow of Culldrome
|States, Islands and Territories|
The Axle Powers
Confederacy of Independent Culldrome
The Shadow of Culldrome was a devastating large scale war that primarily involved the Culldrome Isles and the Confederacy of Independent Culldrome. Amidst rising tensions, the two nations plunged into another civil war, dragging along the USA, the Axle Powers, the Circular Powers and Castillia fighting against Snowzerland and Zhou. The war brought many losses and affected many on both sides after escalating into one of the most destructive wars of the decade. The war saw the eventual downfall of Confederate Culldrome and brought peace to the archipelago once more. It is the final part of the main Culldrome Isles Story Arc of The Epic Adelie Story.
- 1 Prolouge
- 2 Chapter 1: A Brighter Dawn
- 3 Chapter 2: Amidst Rising Tensions
- 4 Chapter 3: Skulldrome Battledome
- 5 Chapter 4: Menap Madness
- 6 Chapter 5: Battlelines
- 7 Chapter 6: Assault
- 8 Chapter 7: Treshurr Trouble
- 9 Chapter 8: The Long Game
- 10 Chapter 9: All Downhill
- 11 Chapter 10: Shadow of Culldrome
- 12 Chapter 11: Showdown of Culldrome
- 13 Epilouge
Helicopters roared overhead as Agent Sonic Boom and his squadron ducked behind trees for cover. A blast of air blew their uniform around as the warm autumn sun rose upon the Confederacy. The squadron was at a military complex, buried deep in the Skulldrome forests of its northern islands. The complex, however was a massive deforested area, standing out like a sore thumb. It had a fully functioning airstrip and army barracks. Sonic looked up into the sky to see dozens of aircraft flying about, gracing the sky, which was dotted with orange clouds which glowed in the sunlight.
The helicopters past and Sonic looked around for more any enemies. Then he signalled his fellow agents.
Sonic Boom: "Clear. Let's move!"
The squadron, consisting of a mix of Culldrome's finest agents and soldiers, were on a mission to investigate a rumored Confederate project, fearfully named Project Shadow. It had only been discovered by Culldrome a few days ago by a wiretap. A mission was quickly drafted as a squadron was formed and stealthily airdropped into Confederate territory.
Sonic and the agents got out of their cover and hastily moved forward. They waded past tall grass and weeds, soon arriving at the main gates of the complex, guarded by two Ninjas atop an open guard tower. Stopping behind a bush, Sonic turned towards a soldier and nodded. Within a blink of an eye, the two guards were eliminated. The squad got up again and quietly managed to sneak into the base.
Sonic: "Well, well...this is an impressive base."
The base reminded Sonic of a large, elaborate Culldrome base on the mainland. Then he remembered the state of Culldrome City. The capital had been bombed by Porcyals in January. The bomb managed to halt the Confederate advance to the capital, but also ended up destroying the southern portion of the city. Sonic remembered the news footage of the wreckage and debris; entire skyscrapers had been wiped out. Despite the wreckage, Culldrome still functioned normally. The National Capitol still stood proudly as a symbol of hope to the Culldrome. The government had temporarily evacuated to Civ Island, a safe haven far away from the Culldrome Isles. From here, Culldrome slowly rebuilt itself.
In February, Culldrome stood up to fight in the Frosian War, protecting Shopper and Axle interests. The citizens gained a sense of nationalism as Culldrome's armies continued to grow and battle for the good of all. Months later in April, most of Culldrome's military forces were deployed in New Delphis and Polaris, stopping the Axis advance. Only a handful remained in Culldrome, acting as a protection force should the Confederacy strike.
Sonic was brought back to reality when a Communications Agent, carrying a heavy backpack of equipment, spoke up.
Comm Agent: "Sir! We better get into hiding. They're beginning to launch rockets."
Sonic: "Shut up! Over there."
Sonic ran towards a truck parked on the side of a building. The squadron soon followed and hid behind it.
Agent: "Now what?"
Suddenly a siren sounded. The squadron stopped moving as an announcement came on.
PA: "ATTENTION! ALL PERSONNEL CLEAR THE LAUNCH ZONE! REPEAT: ALL PERSONNEL CLEAR THE LAUNCH ZONE!"
Sonic: "What the heck is going on-?"
A large rocket in the middle of the forest flew up high above the complex leaving behind a trail of smoke. Its exhaust illuminated the sky as the rocket blasted through.
Sonic: "Interesting...they look like the Soaring Stars back home..."
The Communications Agent's radio turned on and someone began to speak from the other line.
Radio (COMM): "*static* -Team, do you re- *static* Alpha Tea- *static* -read?"
Comm Agent (COMM): "This is Alpha Team. Who is this?"
Agent (COMM): "Alp- *static* this is Bravo Four *static* -sixty miles northwest."
Bravo Four was the callsign of one of Culldrome's many spy planes. This particular one had been deployed soon after Sonic's squadron landed.
Comm Agent (COMM): "Roger, we read you. What is it?"
Agent (COMM): "There seems to be a rocket launch of some sort near your location. What do you see?"
Comm Agent (COMM): "It launched somewhere near in the forest. What about you?"
Agent (COMM): "It's at around 5 kilometers in altitude and slowly turning northeast. It doesn't seem to be an ICBM. We've sent off a missile to destroy it"
The shocked Communications Agent turned to Sonic and the squad, who were still staring at the rocket up high.
Comm Agent: "Sir! Bravo Four have sighted the rocket and are about to destroy it!"
Sonic: "What?! Tell them to call it off. All of our positions are going to be blown!"
Comm Agent (COMM): "Bravo Four! Bravo Four! Terminate your attack! I repeat, terminate your attack! We're going to get revealed!"
Agent (COMM): "Abort? Now?! It's a bit late for that!"
Comm Agent (COMM): "Do what you can! Stop it!"
Agent (COMM): "We'll see what we can do. Bravo Four, out."
Sonic: "What now?"
Comm Agent: "They'll see what we can do, apparently. It's best we get out of here before we are seen."
Sonic: "Negative. We still don't have enough intel."
Sonic pointed over to a dull, grey concrete building with a large satellite dish on top.
Sonic: "Over there. Their communications building. They might have something in there. Let's go!"
The squadron got up and stealthily made their way to the building's entrance. Surprisingly, there were still no soldiers in sight; Sonic presumed everyone was out watching the rocket launch. The building door was kicked down as several soldiers filed in, guns drawn and ready to fire. Sonic and the other agents followed inside as the soldiers quickly shot down a few enemy soldiers, confused and still at their posts. Within a minute, the entire building was empty, besides the squadron.
Soldier: "Sir, the building's clear."
Sonic: "Good. Stand guard at the entrances and on the roof. Alert us when they come back. We'll take it from here."
Soldier: "Yes, sir."
The soldiers hurriedly made their way to the entrances as several of the agents began to scan the equipment and records inside the building. Sonic stood back and looked around. The inside of the building was dull and gray as well. A small light fixture hanging from the roof illuminated the room. One side of the room was covered in a bank of old monitoring equipment. Agents had already begun collecting what information they could get. Opposite that were a collection of a dozen locked filing cabinets. Other agents had already unlocked them and began to empty their contents into bags. On wall opposite the entrance was a staircase which lead up to another floor and up to the roof. There were agents there, too, frantically getting information.
Sonic: "Come on, guys! We don't have much time left."
Instead of questioning why their superior wasn't helping, the agents continued to gather intelligence, which would then be analyzed back at Culldrome. Not long after Sonic's command, there was a loud explosion outside.
Sonic: "That must be our missile. Everyone pack up! We're moving out!"
The squadron of agents and soldiers ran out of the building as sirens began to blare. Sonic briefly looked up to see a large, purple cloud up in the sky and pieces of rocket debris falling to earth.
CRASH CRASH BOOM
Fiery pieces of rocket debris fell into the forest around the military complex. The squadron continued to flee but soon Confederate soldiers were on their tail.
CIC Soldier: "侵入者！"
The soldiers opened fire on the squadron in front of them. The Culldrome soldiers began to shoot behind them as they continued running.
Sonic: "Over there! Get in the truck!"
Sonic gestured towards a parked army truck. Swiftly, everyone clambered into the back as Sonic got into the driver's seat. Several soldiers hung tightly onto the sides and fired at the Confederate soldiers behind them. Sonic quickly got the truck started and eventually made his way outside of the base. The truck swerved around as it churned up dirt beneath it as it drove around the forest.
Sonic: "Good. At least we're out of there. We need to get somewhere safe so that we can call in a helicopter and get out of here."
Agent: "Uhh, sir...we're not exactly...'out of the woods'..."
Sonic looked out of his window and into his rear view mirrors to see a tank chasing after them.
A cannon shell impacted into a nearby tree, showering dirt and splinters everywhere. The soldiers on the sides got back inside the truck and hid from the tank.
Another shell was shot, only managing to narrowly miss the truck and hit behind it. The truck lurched forward as it was pushed by the shell's explosion.
Sonic: "Can we get backup or anything?"
Comm Agent: "A Culldrome attack helicopter is headed this way. Just hold out for a minute and lose the tank."
Sonic: "Can do!"
Sonic continued to weave deeper into the forest as the tank continued to fire at them. Soon, however, the large tank was not able to keep up with the smaller truck. The Confederacy soon gave up and the squadron reached a small clearing. Everyone got out of the truck as the Culldrome helicopter landed.
Sonic: "Get in guys! We're all safe and sound now!"
Sonic was the last one to get into the helicopter. He looked back one more time at the Confederate forest behind him. The helicopter took off and Sonic climbed in. However, at the corner of his eye, Sonic saw a large fleet of trucks and tanks making their way on a road in the forest. Sonic shrugged it off and closed the helicopter door. The helicopter flew off into the sunrise, soon disappearing into a little speck.
Chapter 1: A Brighter Dawn
Chairman Blizzard Dux was seated at the back of a luxurious car. The chairman of the CIC rolled down his window and looked up at the sky, only to see a Culldrome helicopter flying off. A Confederate secret service agent, seated at the front of the car, spoke up.
Agent: "Sir, I believe that's a Culldrome helicopter! The military base noted that several CSIA agents raided them and have escaped."
Dux, in a happy mood, decided to ignore his agent.
Dux: "What was that? I can't hear you over the noise of my empire."
The agent did not find this funny and continued.
Agent: "Sir, what shall we do?"
Dux: "If you don't shut up, then I'm afraid that I'll have to terminate you."
The Agent slumped back into his seat as the car drove along. The car was at the back of a convoy of army tanks and trucks. The convoy was headed towards the base that the CSIA raided just minutes ago. Eventually, it reached the base, after going through a rigorous security screening, much to Dux's dismay. The trucks parked in the middle of the base as the tanks headed off to the garages. The Confederate soldiers formed a guard on honor next to Dux's car door. Dux got out and was greeted by the bases' general, General Satako.
Satako: "Sir! It is an honor to meet you!"
Dux: "Yes, yes, whatever. Have you got everything ready?"
Satako: "Yes, sir. Come, I'll show you!"
The two waddled off and talked to each other.
Dux: "Have you gotten a stage ready for the announcement this morning?"
Satako: "Yes, sir. Yes, sir."
Dux: "How about the...'testing grounds'..."
Satako: "Yes, sir. That too. They've been ready for a while now. I'm telling you, it's the pride and joy of the Confederacy."
Dux: "Excellent. What about the rocket test?"
Satako: "Th-th-the rocket test? Wh-what do you mean? I don't you what you're talking about."
Dux: "Then explain the absolutely massive explosion a few minutes ago. You can still see the explosion smoke idiot."
Dux: "TAKE HIM AWAY!"
At once several soldiers pulled General Satako away. Dux's mood had gone sour and he was not happy.
Dux: "RIGHT! We have no time to lose. Get everything set up! My nationwide address shall happen on time! Go! Go!"
Everyone hurriedly went off to set up TV cameras and microphones. Dux smiled and reassured himself.
Dux: "Everything shall go to plan...hehehe..."
Soon, Dux was standing on the stage with dozens of cameras and microphones directed towards him. The Chairman had absolute control of the Confederacy's media and often appeared on television broadcasting propaganda to his nation. Today was just like any other presentation, but Dux had enlisted the help of hackers to broadcast his speech to the Culldrome Isles.
Assistant: "Chairman! The broadcast is about to begin. Get ready!"
Dux stood up straight and stared at the cameras in front of him and began his address.
In Civ Island, Supreme Leader Steven Snowen was waking up and getting his breakfast ready. He had a packed and busy day ahead of him; his schedule ran like clockwork. Half suited up, he turned on his television to watch the morning news as he ate his toast.
TV Presenter: "...Reports say that the Confederacy are up to something again. It won't be long before Supreme Leader Steven Snowen and his government take action on this menace."
Steven: "Heh...you got that right..."
Suddenly, the television screen flashed and was filled with static. The screen turned black and the Confederate flag was displayed, with their anthem playing.
Steven: "Oh for crying out loud...what is it this time?"
The tune was cut suddenly and the image of Chairman Dux was plastered onto the screen. Steven slowly sat down as an agent stormed into his house.
Steven: "Shut up, I'm watching."
Dux: "I am proud to be able to speak to you all, my great Confederacy, the nation that was and is to be the greatest and most proud of all. However, this is a special occasion and we are joined by our...sister nation...the Culldrome Isles. I'm sure we all get together nicely..."
The Chairman winked at the camera, before continuing on with his speech.
Dux: "I dream in a world of peace and prosperity. A world of unity that binds us all to work for the common good. A world of order and justice. Such a dream is hard to achieve and is nigh impossible. Many great penguins and other creatures have also had the same dream as me. Many have died wanting to fulfill this dream and today we see that we are all still far from it.
I however, believe that this dream can be accomplished. The great and mighty Confederacy shall be the pioneers of this ambitious dream of peace and tranquility! We have the power to take on this burden and lead ourselves and others to a greater future!
However, though, there is a price to pay for this future...a price which I plan to take out on dear Culldrome watching us. Don't worry though, your way of life will still remain normal and we won't be planning any sort of large scale military action. No. For such a large undertaking such as this, there are bound to be pawns who will be crushed under the mighty Confederacy. I hereby present to you, these pawns..."
At that, several Confederate soldiers hauled up four penguins and two puffles, all with their heads covered in a bag. They were all trying to struggle against the soldiers but were brought up onto the stage anyway and lined up in front of the cameras.
Penguin: "LET ME GO! GET OFF!"
The soldiers swiftly removed the bags over the prisoner's heads, revealing their identities. Chub 777, Buhc 777, Daniel, Duncan, Joseph and Careflower. They were all struggling to be freed from the soldiers, but they continued to tighten their grip on them.
Dux: "These...six of our most notorious criminals captured during the Great War. They will be pitted to battle against each other, as the price of the Confederacy's world domination!"
A soldier pulled out a rifle and hit it against Chub's head, knocking him out cold onto the stage.
Dux: "SILENCE YOU FOOLS! You, dear Culldrome, have a choice! Rescue these poor citizens of yours and risk our action, or sit back and relax as we pave the way for a better future! MUHAHA-"
The Chairman's evil laugh was cut and replaced by the Confederate anthem, before returning to the normal Culldrome television broadcast.
Steven: "What the heck was that?"
Agent: "Sir, you're wanted in The Rectangle."
Steven: "Fine. Let me just put my tie o-"
Agent: "No time, sir!"
Steven: "FIVE MINUTES!"
Soon after, Steven was inside his car, being driven to The Rectangle by the agent. 'The Rectangle' was a restricted section in Civ Island's capital, Meier. Named after The Square defense building back in Culldrome City, The Rectangle was only a small building with a radio tower, in stark contrast to the vast technological superiority of The Square. Steven's car continued driving through the small stone streets of the city, which was only established in January. Penguins outside began to wonder around in confusion, after also seeing the Confederate broadcast. Some had even managed to chase down Steven's car and were knocking on his window. The agent picked up the pace as Steven just smiled and waved on.
Minutes later, Steven had arrived at The Rectangle. His car pulled up to the entrance of the building, which resembled a traditional, wooden, Culldrome house. The agent opened the door for Steven and the two quickly made their way inside. Steven glanced upwards at a sign above the door, innocently reading FLOWER SHOP. The two were greeted by an old penguin, who stood behind a counter.
Penguin: "Ah, Supreme Leader. Would you be of interest with any special flowers."
Steven: "No thank you, but do you have any cheese?"
Penguin: "Yes, sir, right this way to the back."
The penguin lead the two into a small back room and shut the door. The penguin sneakily pushed a fake pot plant backwards, triggering a switch. The back room was actually an elevator, and Steven and the agent rode it underground.
Agent: "Sir, if I may, disguising HQ as a flower shop sounds lame."
Steven: "Oh come on."
The elevator arrived at its destination the door opened up. Steven and the agent stepped out into an underground corridor with dozens of other agents and soldiers scurrying about. The two eventually made their way to a large conference room, where they were greeted by Culldrome's highest ranking officials.
Steven: "Gentlemen! Let's get this started. Someone give me a report."
Steven sat down in a chair as a General stood up. The General was wearing a formal purple military suit and had many medals pinned onto himself.
General: "Sir, I believe that the Confederacy intercepted and hijacked our television and radio frequencies. All of them."
Another penguin stood up, but this time a Captain.
Captain: "We have intel that suggests the incident occurred all across the country, with signals back in the capital being compromised as well."
Steven: "Mhm. This is distressing. What about the Culldrome citizens they've captured?"
General: "We have a file for them, here."
The General pulled out several folders and tossed them across the desk to Steven. He opened the folders up and examined them as he continued.
Steven: "Do you have any intel on them?"
General: "No, sir, I'm afraid not."
Steven: "Hmm...I believe it may be time to act..."
Captain: "What are you suggesting, sir?"
Steven: "It's about time we wiped out those Confederates. They've been nothing but trouble. I suggest we declare war immediately."
The room went silent as Steven's words hung in the air. Steven looked up from reading the folders and gazed at everyone gathered in the room. The General and Captain were still standing, but did not speak. After an eternity, a CSIA agent stood up and spoke.
Agent: "I support the Supreme Leader."
The Captain and General joined in, voicing their agreement. Soon, everyone in the room had stood up in support of Steven's plan. However a penguin remained sitting and raised his hand.
Steven: "Yes, Thomas?"
Thomas was one of the many high ranking officials in Culldrome's armed forces and the Culldrome Scientific Research Agency. He timidly stood up and spoke up.
Thomas: "Sir, we have very little military hardware deployed nationally. Everyone's off fighting in the Frosian War. Not to mention our already heavy losses."
Steven: "Hmm...well...I'll see what I can do. I'm afraid Culldrome will have to withdraw from the Frosian War as we fight this danger on our doorstep."
Steven stood up from his chair and saluted.
Everyone saluted back and scampered around, following Steven's orders.
Back in the Skulldrome Isles, the stage was being backed up. Chairman Dux was at the back of his car, silently gazing out the window and at his group of prisoners. They were all trying to struggle against the soldiers who were pulling them back into the truck (besides Chub, who was still knocked out).
Joseph: "I've had enough! Let...me...go!"
With all of his might, Joseph pushed the soldier who had tried to restrain him. The soldier fell onto the floor hard and immediately several other soldiers had gathered around and took aim at Joseph. The muscly, Ruscan penguin charged towards the nearest soldier, grabbed his rifle in one hand and punched him with the other. The others saw this as a chance to escape.
Buhc kicked the soldier holding him. The soldier winced backwards in pain and let go of Buhc. By now a large group of soldiers had gathered around and the Chairman had gotten out of his car.
Dux: "Don't shoot them! 撮影しない！ Whatever you do, don't shoot them."
The soldiers, fearing Dux's punishment if they shot, cautiously backed off and formed a circle, still aiming at their prisoners. Joseph passed his rifle to Buhc who aimed it back. Joseph got into a fighting stance. Dan, Duncan and Careflower had not managed to free themselves and were surrounded by a barricade of soldiers who held onto them tightly. It was a stand off.
Soldier: "Surrender, scum! You have no chance!"
Buhc: "Well I'd like to see if we do...HIYA!"
Buhc lunged forward and knocked out a soldier with the rifle. Joseph also moved forward and jumped into the group of soldiers who barricaded the other three. Many punches were thrown by Joseph who, despite being treated badly for the past few months, managed to knock out many soldiers. The soldiers attacked back by swinging their rifles at him. Joseph managed to doge a few but was hit badly. However, he continued to let his anger out in a massive rage.
Buhc continued to swing around his rifle at the soldiers, who continued backing off quickly. Not a single shot had been fired yet, despite the melee combat.
Buhc: "Come on, you cowards! Attack! Let's fight like real me-"
From behind, Buhc was hit by a taser. He dropped his rifle as he collapsed onto the floor. All of the soldiers began to laugh, some hysterically. Seeing his chance, Dan bounced up into a soldier's head. The soldier was pushed back and everyone looked towards them. In the confusion, Duncan and Careflower also managed to push back the soldiers holding them. Joseph, now badly bruised, had managed to take down most of the soldiers who surrounded the group.
Duncan: "Ha! Do you think that you're smarter th-"
ZAP ZAP ZAP ZAP
In quick succession, the four were also tasered, knocking them down. Everyone began laughing again, but the Chairman pushed past the soldiers and towards the middle where the group lay.
Dux: "Whatever. Get them into the truck, already."
The soldiers dragged Chub, Buhc, Dan, Duncan, Joseph and Careflower into the truck. Dux got back into his car and the convoy drove off again onto the dirt road, sending dust up into the air.
"So, good morning, gentlemen! Let us begin."
Steven was sitting in his office with his laptop out in front of him. On it were the faces of Long Lee, Robert Smith and Iron Toto, the leaders of Margate, Snowiny and the Terra Federation, respectively; the Circular PowersThe four were all in a video conference, hastily called up by Steven.
Iron Toto: "Why, exactly have you brought us here today?"
Steven: "I'm sure you know."
Steven brought up a Confederate flag and waved it in front of the laptop camera.
Steven: "We need to remove this menace from the world. For the good of all."
Robert Smith: "Why have you called us? What about your Axle Rangers?"
The three chuckled, annoying Steven.
Long Lee: "Really, now? What's in it for us?"
Steven: "For starters that Confederacy won't be a danger anymore. Should they continue existing, they will just threaten the peace of Culldrome and perhaps all of Antarctica. Their military is quite decent, I must admit. Otherwise, you could all have national glory or something. Have another big nationalist morale booster."
Robert: "Seems good enough for me! Count Snowiny in."
Steven: "Good. What about you two? Whadaya want? Money? Oil?"
Iron: "If Snowiny's in then the Terra Federation shall join in as well."
Long: "Sure. Margate will be happy to show her prowess."
Steven: "Excellent. I'll send you all some documents and I'll be in touch. Again, thank you all."
Long: "It's a pleasure."
The video conference ended and Steven swiveled his chair around to face the large glass window behind him. He gazed out into the town, now bustling with activity. Steven smiled; he was in a good mood today.
Chapter 2: Amidst Rising Tensions
Hours later, The Rectangle was still bustling with activity. Agents, soldiers and the odd politician were all scurrying about, planning Steven's sudden military expedition. Sonic and his squadron had safely made it back and the intel they had gathered was analysed. His agents were still being interviewed and information was being collected. Sonic, himself had finished being interviewed and sat on a small couch in The Rectangle's kitchen. The kitchen was not large and fancy, but was small and only had the bare essentials. Sonic thought that the kitchen reminded him of one from an office.
Sonic sat on the couch, sipping a coffee as dozens of penguins walked past, on their duties. After a few minutes, a crowd had formed in a hallway in front of him. Sonic stood up, finished his coffee and walked into the crowd.
Steven: "Please, please. One at a time..."
Steven: "Ah, yes, you. Get in my office. As for you all, I'll be waiting for a sitrep at the meeting hall in five minutes."
The crowd dispersed and Sonic followed Steven into his office. The two sat down and began to talk.
Steven: "How was your mission?"
Sonic: "You could say it was a success. We've got a ton of Confederate intel."
Steven: "Good...good...anything on Project Shadow?"
Sonic: "Yes. We managed to haul a lot of Project Shadow intel. Most of the information seems to be encrypted, so there are several agents decoding them as we speak."
Steven: "Any leads so far?"
Sonic: "Quite a few. Apparently Project Shadow is a top secret Confederate war plan. Testing began this morning, with the rocket launch...has someone told you about that, yet?"
Steven: "Yes, most of it. What else did you find out?"
Sonic: "The project seemed to involve a large amount of slave labor in Menap Island. There are quite a lot of manufacturing and mining facilities there. If we strike, we would cripple their plans and stop their penguin-rights violations. Win-win situation here."
Steven: "Hmm...I think I agree with you on that."
Suddenly, someone knocked on the office door.
Steven: "I said, five minutes!"
Steven: "Oh. Come in."
The door opened and in came General Roberts, the Head of the Culldrome Army. His face was blackened by soot and smoke from his recent battles in Polaris. His iconic helmet was also scorched and his visor was chipped. He himself, however, was still normal and the general stumbled over and took a seat next to Sonic.
General Roberts: "Ah, you. You're that agent guy."
Sonic: "Agent Sonic...general..."
Roberts: "So, what did I miss?"
Steven brought Roberts back up to speed, telling him about his plan and the intel.
Roberts: "I see...I'm going to agree with Sonic about the Menap invasion. Give me some time and I'll draft up a plan."
Steven: "Good...but what about those Culldrome prisoners of war? I don't want to ignore them."
Roberts: "Ah, right...that..."
Steven: "I understand that you, Sonic, know some of those prisoners."
Sonic: "Yes, indeed...well...d-do we have a fixture on where the TV transmission came from?"
Steven: "As a matter of fact, we do."
Roberts: "Good. How about we liberate those prisoners first? Give 'em a taste of freedom-"
Steven: "Yes...they seem to be the most in danger and most visible to the media. They should be our first priority."
Again, someone knocked on the office door.
Steven: "I said-"
"Sir, its been half an hour."
Steven glanced at his desk clock and got up.
Steven: "Well, we'll finish this after."
Sonic and Roberts also got up. The three left the room to be briefed on by everyone else in The Rectangle.
Minutes later, half of the staff in The Rectangle had gathered in the conference room where they had gathered earlier. This time, however, the room was packed, with two being squeezed onto one chair and several others blocking the doorways. Steven had to push himself through the crowd until he reached the front of the room.
Steven: "So, anything new while I was gone?"
The entire crowd began talking at one and waved papers in Steven's face.
Steven: "Okay, okay. Uhh...you...you first."
The Supreme Leader pointed at a young penguin in a sloppy suit and slanted glasses. The penguin, who sported a CSIA badge corrected himself before speaking up.
Agent: "Sir, we've mostly finished decoding the intel we've acquired thanks to Alpha Team. Someone, put it on the screen please."
Someone at the back of the crowd typed a few commands onto their laptop, before the screen at the front of the room lit up with a string of gibberish and code. After a few more commands were inputted, the screen turned black before displaying schematics of a rocket.
Agent: "We have gathered a great deal of intel thanks to the mission. The rocket launch earlier was the first phase of testing of Project Shadow. The Confederacy seem to have developed adequate rocket technology, capable of placing a small object into a low orbit."
The screen changed to show a picture of several sketches of various weapons.
Agent: "Here we can see several weapons of mass destruction, capable of being mounted onto their rockets. We are not entirely sure yet, although they could be Porcyal-based weapons."
The screen changed again, this time showing a map of Antarctica, with Culldrome and its territories highlighted.
Agent: "Project Shadow seems to be a large scale invasion of Culldrome territories. If we are to fight back and destroy the Confederacy, it would be better if we attack first. If we fail at this, then they may move onto attacking other nations. This brings us onto the topic of battle plans."
The agent sat down as a military general stood up.
General: "Sir, I believe that Culldrome should attack first. We would have the element of surprise."
Another penguin, this time a captain, stood up.
Captain: "Sir, I believe that we do not have an element of surprise. The Confederacy has basically agitated us into fighting a war with them. They showed off those prisoners. They want us to fight them."
Steven: "Well it doesn't matter. Either way, we will have to attack them, regardless. The only problem is to where we attack. I've just discussed this with General Roberts and Agent Sonic. We believe that we should attack Menap Island first, so as to cripple the Confederation's production capabilities and hopefully free whatever slaves the Confederates have turned our citizens into."
There was a murmur of agreement within the room. Several penguins exchanged looks and others simply nodded.
Steven: "However, there was the issue of freeing those prisoners. I don't want to risk having the Confederacy broadcast their demise to our country."
The agent who presented the intel earlier stood up again.
Agent: "That reminds me, sir. We believe that there is a large weapons testing ground in the northern islands of Skulldrome. We've traced the origin of the television broadcast to be there, as well. The intel also revealed that those prisoners would be used as test subjects on their new weapons. The Confederacy want to be known as 'powerful'."
Another agent stood up.
Agent 2: "We also believe that the rocket launch originated there. If we manage to attack and take them out, then they would have no launch site and we would rescue those prisoners."
Steven: "Well then...that should be our new first target. We liberate the prisoners and promptly proceed to attack Menap Island. Everybody agreeing with me raise their hand."
Everyone in the room raised their hands in agreement. Steven nodded and checked his watch.
Steven: "Then it is settled. Everyone, go grab yourselves a coffee, we have a long night ahead of us!"
Chub began to wake up from his daze. He warily blinked as his eyes adjusted to the darkness. He found himself on the cold concrete floor of a dark room and tried to get up, but was restrained by shackles. Chub gazed at them and saw that they were attached to the wall behind him.
Chub's voice was croaky and echoed in the room. He sat up, wincing with pain throbbing from his head. He rubbed his head and began to look around. At first he could only see the small space around him but soon he could see the entire room that he was in. The group - Buhc, Joseph, Careflower, Dan and Duncan - were also in shackles and tied to the walls. They were all passed out on the floor. Chub examined them and saw that they were slightly scorched; electrocuted perhaps.
Chub looked up at the ceiling. There, a tiny, lone square hole opened up into the sky. Light poured in from the hole, which lit it up dimly. HE looked to his left to see a metal prison door. It looked weak and flimsy, but after the beating that they had received, there was no chance of busting it down.
Suddenly, Chub could hear faint sounds of someone walking up to the door.
Panicking, he fell down on the floor and pretended that he was still unconscious. The door opened and a Confederate soldier came in. The soldier wheeled in a cart, similar to those used in airlines to carry food.
Chub, not understanding what the soldier said, remained still. The soldier cleared his throat and spoke English, with a heavy Japanese accent.
Soldier: "Here is your food!"
Chub remained still.
Soldier: "I said, here is your food!"
The soldier knocked the cart over. With a loud echoing bang, the cart clattered onto the floor, spilling trays of their 'food' everywhere. Chub remained still, but heard everyone else waking up.
Soldier: "EAT YOUR FOOD!"
The soldier threw a tantrum and exited the prison cell, closing the door with a loud bang. Everyone got up from the concrete floor and stared at each other.
Chub: "What the heck?"
Joseph: "What was that?"
Dan: "Whatever. Where are we?"
Duncan: "Trapped, stupid! Chained up and everything...again."
Careflower: "I've had enough of this treatment."
Chub: "Well we can't really do anything about it now."
The door opened again and another soldier came in.
Soldier: "Well I'm going to presume that you've already eaten. If not, too bad."
Chub looked at the up turned cart to see artificial grey mush, their food, strewn all over the floor.
Chub: "We're not eating this-"
Soldier: "Eh, suit yourself."
A flood of soldiers came into the room and unchained them all. Too weak to resist them, they were all tasered again and dragged off to the back of a truck.
*KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK*
The door to the Chairman's office opened up. Gravity, the Chairman's right hand man and head of the Confederate Military, waddled in. The two were in Shadow City, back on the Skulldrome mainland. They were at the City Hall, which was overtaken and now functioned as the Confederate's seat for its 'government'. Gravity waddled in and sat in the chair in front of Dux's desk. The two had become close friends with each other and Gravity was one of Dux's few friends.
Dux, who was busy signing paper work, looked up from his desk.
Dux: "Ah, you. What do you want?"
Gravity: "I want to discuss the development of Project Shadow."
Dux: "I'm afraid to say that we've had several set backs. The test rocket was destroyed during a Culldrome raid on our facilities. It will be weeks before we can have another rocket up, not to mention the testing."
Gravity: "That's the reason I'm here today."
Gravity took out a folder and laid it on the Chairman's desk. Dux opened it up and looked through several pictures of rockets and top secret papers.
Dux: "What is it?"
Gravity: "That is a revised copy of the testing phase of Project Shadow. I've cut down the amount of tests to...none, and brought up production rates. As we speak, the...'superweapon' is being constructed on Menap Island."
Dux: "What about the...testing grounds?"
Gravity: "Hah, where you sent those prisoners of yours? Don't fret. They're just practice dummies for the army, now. Perhaps it wasn't the ' grand superweapon test' that you were expecting, but it'll wreck the Culldrome morale nevertheless."
Dux: "When would you have the superweapon ready?"
Gravity: "Several weeks, possibly. A few days if we're very lucky. In the meantime, our military forces have grown. We have several thousand loyal soldiers ready to roll. In addition, they're backed up by the most powerful hardware in the archipelago. Ships, tanks, bombers...you name it."
Dux: "Excellent...the Culldrome will have no idea about what hit them. With our might we will be able to rid them forever. You've done well, my friend."
Gravity: "Thank you, thank you..."
Gravity got up and began to leave the room.
Gravity stopped just as he was about to turn the door handle and exit.
Dux: "I recommend that you assign some troops to defend the testing grounds. I feel that...we need to be a bit more safe..."
Gravity: "Yeah, sure, whatever."
With that, Gravity left the room. Dux reached into his chest pocket and retrieved a small purple Porcyal. He twiddled it in his hands and gazed at its purple glow. It was almost entrancing and mesmerizing. There was a faint hum of power emanating from the Porcyal, packed with enough energy to destroy an entire city. With his several war projects, the Confederate supply of Porcyals had dwindled, with only small fragments and particles being used to power weapons and vehicles. However, Dux's crystal was one of the largest in the Confederacy. He continued to gaze at it and felt a strange feeling as he held massive power in his hands. After a while, he slid the Porcyal back into his pocket and continued to work.
Dux: "It will all go to plan soon, Blizzard...don't you worry..."
Chub was woken up by a jolt. He was in the back of another truck and tied up...again. He looked up to see his friends tied up as well. Joining them were two armed guards. One of the guards glared at him as he clicked his rifle. Chub looked back down and remained quiet. Everyone also remained silent. The only sound that could be heard was the whirr on the truck and the occasional squeal of the wheels on the dirt road. Eventually, the truck began to slow down and stopped. The guards pointed their rifles towards their prisoners who reluctantly and weakly stood up.
Guard 1: "立ち上がる！"
Guard 2: "Up! Get up! Up or we shoot!"
Duncan, who was very tired and bruised, struggled to get up.
Guard 1: "立ち上がる！"
Guard 2: "UP! UP I SAY!"
The guard kicked Duncan off the truck and onto the dirt outside. Buhc, with all of his strength, got up and pushed the guard over. All of a sudden, the second guard jabbed Buhc's arm with his rifle. Screaming in pain, Buhc was also kicked off the truck. After a while, everyone was outside.
Guard 1: "移動する！移動する！移動する！"
Guard 2: "Move!"
Chub and the group slowly shuffled their way, being escorted by the guards. Several soldiers had also joined them. Chub looked around. He saw tall trees all around them. It was a mystery as to how their truck managed to get through them all. The sky above them was grey and cloudy. It was not until he looked in front when he saw their demise in the form of a gigantic, glass dome towering above them.
Dan: "Oh man. Look at that."
Guard 2: "Shut up!"
The group were walked up to a small guard post, which was staffed by a short but stern soldier. He scanned their faces before nodding and letting them inside the post. They waddled down several flights of stairs and eventually arrived at a large room underground. The room was dark, with only a beam of sunlight streaming in from a skylight. On the sides of the room were twelve metal doors, with the Confederate symbol plastered over them. There was a cold feeling to them; a dense of dread came over the group.
Guard 1: "分割する"
Guard 2: "Okay. Split up. You all go into your own special door."
Joseph: "No. I refuse."
Guard 2: "Boy, I suggest you listen to me! Into your door, now!"
The guards shuffled Chub, Buhc, Joseph, Careflower, Dan and Duncan in front of six separate doors. One of the guards pushed a button on the wall, opening the doors up.
Guard 1: "で!で!で!"
Guard 2: "Get in! Do as I say or I shoot you. I shoot you all!"
Reluctantly, the six stepped forward through the door and into a tiny compartment. Once everyone had stepped in, the doors slammed shut and a trap door opened beneath them, sending them falling through a deep, dark abyss.
Supreme Leader Steven Snowen was at Clarkson, walking around on the tarmac at John Clarkson Memorial Airport. It was in the afternoon and Steven was inspecting a squadron of soldiers, who were going to be flown to Pirate City in the Treshurr Isles. There, they would then be shipped off to Skulldrome, to rescue their prisoners and be the first strike in the war. The upcoming war.
Steven was strolling down with his body guards, General Roberts and Agent Sonic.
Steven: "So...we have the best soldiers at our disposal, ready to rock and roll."
Roberts: "Yes, indeed, we do. We shall have no problem attacking the Confederacy. We should just steamroll past them!"
Sonic: "Right, can we go over the plan again?"
Steven: "You two will be flown in and dropped off to a large weapon testing ground. Intel shows that it also doubles as a large arena type thing, where the prisoners will be pitted against each other. Intel also shows that the arena is a big glass dome, so you will be accompanied by bombers to take it down before you come in and rescue the prisoners. The entire operation should take about an hour, no more and no less."
Sonic: "Gee, Supreme Leader, that's kind of a tall order."
Steven glared at Sonic before continuing.
Steven: "Anyway, good luck with the operation. For the Good of All!"
Steven saluted the two, who saluted back. Roberts and Sonic were about to leave, when a young soldier ran up to the trio.
The soldier sloppily saluted them.
Roberts: "Chin up, soldier!"
Soldier: "Y-yes, sir! Sir, there's something you've got to see."
The young soldier took off. Steven, Roberts and Sonic took off after him. They were lead into a nearby hangar, where several soldiers were gathered around a tiny, 1960s-esque television.
"Sir, they're here."
A messenger waddled up to Chairman Dux, who was standing outdoors in the midst of a forest, and informed him of the prisoners' arrival.
Dux: "Good. Let's get this 'show' on the road."
Dux turned around and headed for the hidden entrance of his bunker. Several soldiers followed inside. They eventually arrived in a small room. The room was covered in a manner of equipment, mainly old CRT-screens and bundles of cables. Dux peeked into the room, which was manned by a group of engineers.
Dux: "Are we ready?"
Engineer: "Yes, sir. Broadcast is a go."
Dux: "Good. I don't want any hiccups..."
Dux ducked back out and soon arrived at a makeshift stage with a podium and draped in a white sheet. In front of the stage were several cameras and microphones. Dux reached into his pocket to check if his Porcyal was still there and waddled up on the stage.
Dux: "Okay, get the cameras rolling."
Back at the hangar, Steven, Roberts and Sonic gathered around the television. A poor, static-filled broadcast came through the television, with Dux's face being shown onto the screen.
Steven: "Ah, that guy...I remember him..."
The screen continued to broadcast a poor quality transmission.
Dux: "Welcome...welcome...good evening to those across the Confederacy. We are also joined by our fine friends, the Culldrome Isles. I'm sure they'll be having a wonderful evening with us."
Steven: "That little-"
Dux: "Tonight we are also joined by six other creatures, whom you may be familiar with."
The screen switched over to show Chub, Buhc, Dan, Duncan, Joseph and Careflower.
Steven stubbornly waddled off and quickly shouted commands to the soldiers. The screen continued to speak.
Dux: "They're to be punished for acts of terrorism against the Confederacy. How exactly, I hear you asking?"
The screen showed off a blatantly Photoshopped image of a domed battle arena.
Dux: "The Confederacy's mighty power has produced a highly state-of-the-art battle arena. Our friends over here are to be put up against the best of the best - our Confederate army..."
The screen cut back to showing a low-quality Chairman.
Dux: "So, like any proper gentleman, I wish you all good luck. Long live the Confederacy-"
The broadcast abruptly ended, leaving a hustle of commotion at the aircraft hangar.
Roberts: "Okay, everyone shut up and get going!"
Chapter 3: Skulldrome Battledome
April 3 2014, 8:52 PM, Battle Arena, Skulldrome Isles
Buhc was alone, stuck inside a tiny launch tube. His arms were squished tightly and he had barely any room to look around. A dim, blue light illuminated the tiny tube from above, but other than that it was all darkness. Buhc's breath turned into small clouds of vapor in the cold. Buhc strained to look around the tiny tube; surprisingly it was made out of brand new stainless steel.
After an eternity, a voice blankly came out from above the tube.
COMM: "TIME TO START: TEN."
Buhc: "What the heck does that mean?"
COMM: "TIME TO START: FIVE."
Buhc: "Huh? What?"
Buhc started to panic and tried to free his arms and to grab onto something.
COMM: "TIME TO START: ZERO. GO."
With that, the tube violently shook. Buhc's face was flung onto the cold side of the tube. After several lurches, the tube settled and Buhc was slowly pushed upward.
Buhc: "Please stop already..."
The top of the tube opened up, letting in a shower of bright light. Buhc was pushed higher and higher until he emerged into a strange landscape. The floor of the tube continued to be pushed upward into a slightly larger, clear plastic tube. Buhc's eyes adjusted to the light and soon he saw his other friends, also stuck inside their own tubes.
Buhc looked about outside the tube. They had all emerged directly in the middle of a clearing in a forest. There were twelve launch tubes, which roughly formed a hexagonal shape around a Confederate monument in the middle.
Buhc: "What? Twelve tubes?"
Buhc strained his eyes to look into the other tubes. He saw his other friends, but in the other tubes he faintly saw the outline of penguins. They looked like ominous soldiers who had rifles slung onto them.
The voice from earlier returned, talking through a small speaker in the tubes.
COMM: "LONG LIVE THE CONFEDERACY. BEGIN."
With the command, the plastic tubes were blasted off. With a gust of air, the six prisoners were exposed to the Skulldrom air outside.
"How is it progressing?"
Dux was inside the cramped command room from earlier, speaking to several engineers who monitored the battle arena.
Engineer: "We have begun. Permission to initiate the weapon systems."
Dux: "Permission granted."
The engineer pulled several switches and pushed buttons. A CRT monitor turned on and showed intricate details of six weapons. Fans whirred and lights blinked as the monitor showed the weapons powering on.
"Distance: One-six-five nautical miles."
General Roberts was on the bridge of a Culldrom Aircraft Carrier. They were at full speed, rushing to their designated point near Skulldrome. Along with the Aircraft Carrier, there was also a Submarine and a Warship, to help with the invasion.
Roberts: "How much longer?"
Captain: "An hour or two, I'm guessing."
Agent Sonic rushed up the stairs leading to the bridge and saluted to Roberts and the Captain.
Sonic: "Sir, apparently they've begun!"
Captain: "What do you mean?"
Sonic: "We need to get there as fast as we can!"
Roberts: "I suggest we launch now. After we extract those prisoners, then we just fly back towards here."
Captain: "Hmm...I hope you know what you're doing...fine. Launch the aircraft!"
The command was given and soon, dozens of bombers, fighters and helicopters took off from the aircraft carrier and flew into the sunset. Roberts, despite being the head of the Army, came along and flew in a bomber. Sonic, on the other hand, was inside a helicopter along with an attack team.
Sonic (COMM): "Okay, we need to get there as fast as we can."
Pilot (COMM): "Roger."
At the arena, everyone did not know what to do.
Careflower: "Glad to see that everyone is safe-"
The six did not notice the other six mysterious penguins who were gathered on the side opposite to them. The penguins were covered in a veil of darkness and and smoke. They had an ominous feel to them.
Duncan: "What's that-?"
The smoke lifted to reveal six robots, carrying a gun and an electric-shock weapon. They noticed two purple orbs on them and deduced that they were Porcyal powered.
Robot 1: "FIRE! FIRE!"
Chaos ensued. The five other robots fired their guns and electric weapons. Everyone else ducked in various directions for cover. However, they were in the middle of a flat plain.
Joseph: "Into the forest!"
Everyone ran off into the forest. The robots followed them mercilessly into the forest.
Engineer: "Hah ha! Excellent!"
Dux: "Good...make sure you broadcast this to the Culldrome Isles. I want them to know about everything..."
Engineer: "Already doing that."
Dux: "What other weapons do we have?"
Engineer: "I'm glad you asked."
The engineer pushed one of the many buttons on his console.
Back in the arena, the group had lost themselves in the forest.
Careflower: "WHERE IS EVERYONE?!"
Dan: "I CAN'T SEE ANYTHING!"
Buhc: "JUST RUN!"
The robots were also having difficulties. Due to the quality of their construction, the robots could not move well. Two had already gotten stuck in the undergrowth and one had an arm fall off. The remaining robots continued onwards, firing aimlessly.
Suddenly, the ground began to rumble. Everyone lost their balance, even the robots. A stray shot from a robot's electric-weapon managed to hit Careflower, singeing her hair. Chub, with all his might, rushed to her and picked her up. The ground continued to shake more and more violently. Around them, trees began to be uprooted and the ground began to crack open. There were explosions everywhere. A distinct purple glow emanated from the cracks in the ground. Everyone held onto any random bush that they could grab onto so they wouldn't fall in.
Steven Snowen was in the back of his private limousine and was watching the Confederate broadcast of their battle arena.
Steven: "Oh dear..."
A camera panned above the forest, showing the six hiding in the forest. The voice of Chairman Dux did a voice over of the action.
Dux: "Now you can see and fully understand the power of the Confederacy. We are not to be messed with."
Steven: "I wonder how the attack fleet is going..."
Up above the sea north of Skulldrome, fighter jets and bombers flew in, followed by the slower helicopters. The sun had already set and the sky was transitioning into a dark blue color. The clouds high above them were small and wispy and stars were beginning to show.
Roberts: "How much longer?"
Captain: "We'll be arriving in about half an hour. Get ready."
Roberts: "Alright, you heard him! To your stations!"
Their arms were getting weaker and more strained. The pain in Chub's arm began to grow even more since he was carrying Careflower. The ground continued to crack more and more. Duncan frighteningly looked into the cracks, which showed a deep purple abyss. He shut his eyes and wished for the torture to end. As if someone was listening to his thoughts, the ground jolted back into place, shaking everyone off.
Joseph was the first to stand up. He looked around and saw fallen trees everywhere. The robots from earlier were destroyed and lost somewhere in the debris. Joseph looked up to see the dark night sky and the moon approaching. However he did not see a large tree headed his way.
Buhc: "Joseph! Look out!"
It was too late, however and Joseph's arm was pinned to the ground. Miraculously, the main tree trunk missed him and he was trapped under a branch.
Dan: "Are you okay?"
Joseph responded with a grunt as he tried to force his arm off. However, even with his strength he could not lift the branch off."
Joseph: "I can't move this tree..."
Buhc: "Don't worry. I'm sure we can do something..."
Chub: "In the mean time, I think it will be wise to set up a camp here."
Everyone unanimously agreed and soon a small camp fire was set up. Joseph tried to warm himself as he was stuck under the tree. Chub and Careflower also stayed by as everyone else went out to look for something to free Joseph with.
"WHAT ARE THEY DOING?!"
"Nothing, it seems, sir..."
"THAT WAS RHETORICAL, IDIOT!"
Dux and the Engineers were still gathered inside the tiny command room, monitoring the prisoners. In his rage Dux shot the engineer with his deletion pistol.
Dux: "Someone do something!"
Engineer: "Okay, okay...how about this..."
"Look! What if we use this?"
Dan arrived back at the camp carrying a jagged metal piece from a destroyed robot.
Joseph: "You're going to cut off my arm?!"
Dan: "Actually, that's a better idea-"
Joseph: "What was your other plan?"
Dan: "I was going to chop this branch off!"
Dan hurried over to Joseph and carefully cut the fallen branch. Joseph pushed it off of him, freeing himself. Joseph stood up and balanced himself with the tree.
Chub: "You're going to need a bandage."
Joseph: "Nah, I'll live."
Off in the distance, there was an explosion.
Chub: "What is it this time?"
The explosion was accompanied by a smoke cloud on the horizon. A rocket seemed to blast off out from the cloud. It gently flew upwards before tilting back down and heading towards the camp.
Joseph: "I think we better go..."
Chub: "EVERYBODY RUN!"
Chub, Careflower, Joseph and Dan hurried off, hoping the others heard their message. The rocket whistled as it flew above them and impacted directly into the camp fire.
The rocket exploded, pushing everyone off their feet and onto the floor. Several more trees were knocked over as a forest fire started.
Chub: "Go! Go! Go!"
Without looking back, the four got up and continued running. Another rocket was launched upwards, this time however it was aimed just in front of the group.
Chub: "Go that way!"
Everyone ran to the right as the rocket hit a spot just inches away from where they were. Another fire erupted as soil and rock was pelted at them.
Joseph: "Don't look back! Just run!"
Yet another rocket was launched upwards. This time, it flew straight and level. The sides of the rocket opened up to reveal several ice-bullet cannons.
Chub: "What?! NO!"
The rocket flew above them as they were hit with a rain of deadly ice bullets. The four of them were all hit. They stumbled onto the floor as the empty husk of the rocket exploded in the distance. Chub's vision was going blurry and his ears were filled with high-pitched squealing. He saw the distant figures of Buhc and Duncan as they approached before he fell unconscious.
Dux: "A-are they...?"
Engineer 1: "Nope. Sensors show that they're still alive..."
Dux: "Well then finish them off! Don't hesitate!"
Engineer 2: "Yes, sir. We'll finish them off..."
The engineer pulled a microphone amidst the mess of wires and spoke into it.
Engineer 2 (COMM): "Omega Squad. You're up."
Soldier (COMM): "Roger. We'll do the job."
Buhc and Duncan managed to pull everyone into a small crater as the rocket barrage stopped. The crater was covered with the remnants of a fallen tree, which offered protection for them.
Buhc: "Oh no...what are we going to do now?"
The ground began to shake again.
Duncan: "I want to go home..."
Buhc: "Shh...stay here..."
Buhc climbed out of the little crater 'cave' and peeked out to see a tank and several other soldiers around.
Soldier 1: "Where are they? They should be around here..."
Soldier 2: "COME OUT YOU CULLDROM SCUM!"
Soldier 3 (COMM): "Command, this is Omega Squad. We can't find them."
The soldiers and tank rolled past the cave as Buhc ducked down. Breathing a sigh of relief, Buhc ducked back down to Duncan.
Duncan: "What was it?"
Buhc: "The army. They're crawling up there. We need to move."
Duncan: "What do you-"
Buhc: "I said we need to move. Look, I know this is hard but we need to keep strong. I'm sure there's Culldrome help on the way. In the meantime, we need to get everyone into a safer place."
Buhc: "I don't know...I'll go look. Stay here."
Buhc got up, leaving Duncan behind with Chub, Joseph, Dan and Careflower. With a peak out the fallen leaves and branches, Buhc stealthily made his way out into the darkness.
Buhc: "It's just forest here...there's nothing!"
Behind him, he could hear the distant sounds of the tank and Omega Squadron. Buhc ran off the opposite direction, hoping to find something.
The Culldrome Air Force was nearing its destination. Several fighter jets lead a formation, with bombers following behind. Trailing a few minutes back were the helicopters and an hour out was the naval fleet. At the front of the formation, the pilots began to see land in sight.
Pilot 1 (COMM): "We have our destination in sight."
Pilot 2 (COMM): "Roger. Bombers, are you ready?"
Captain 1 (COMM): "Roger."
Captain 2 (COMM): "Yes, sir."
Captain 3 (COMM): "All bombers are ready."
Pilot 3 (COMM): "Good. Helicopters, how about you?"
Pilot 4 (COMM): "Yes, we are all good."
Pilot 5 (COMM): "Alright. This is going to take longer than the planned 'in-and-out', but it'll get the job done. We're going in.
Buhc managed to return to the destroyed forest site. Straining his eyes in the darkness, he could hear a distant whine of an aircraft engine. Being the enthusiast that he was, he listened in.
Buhc: "Sounds like...a high end military jet...don't tell me they're sending those in..."
In his 'concentration', Buhc tripped over a tree branch. He lifted his face of the ground to see the wreckage of the robot from earlier.
Buhc quickly rummaged through the debris. In his rush, he tripped over a large tree trunk, landing painfully on nuts and bolts. Nevertheless, the continued and eventually found a dark purple Porcyal, straight from the chestpiece of a robot. Buhc held it tightly as he ran back to the cave. Tired and hurt, he struggled on and retained his tight grip on the Porcyal.
Buhc: "Come on..."
The sounds of the jets became louder and louder as Buhc ran on. Omega Squadron, who were gathered some distance away, could also hear the roaring engines.
Soldier 1: "What the heck?"
Soldier 2: "They sound like planes!"
Soldier 3: "DUCK-"
The large glass dome surrounding the battle arena was shattered as bombs and missiles were launched from the Culldrom planes. Most of the soldiers of Omega Squadron had no warning and were crushed by the falling glass. A small handful ducked under trees or just collapsed onto the ground and survived. Buhc was caught in the destruction. However, in a reflex action, he absorbed the Porcyal.
With a bright purple flash and an explosion, Buhc transformed into a much more powerful version of himself. Using the Porcyal-powers, he slowed time down. After all, anyone using a Porcyal could do almost anything.
Buhc: "Ah, excellent. Just what I wanted..."
Having regained his strength, Buhc took a leisurely stroll in the battle arena. The bright explosions in front of him lit everything up. Millions of shards of glass gracefully floated down to the ground and shock waves pulsed outwards from craters like gentle waves. Buhc arrived at the crater where his friends were. Duncan had a face of shock frozen onto him.
Buhc, armed with his new powers, gathered everyone up and healed them a little. Buhc and carried them away behind a nearby bush for safety. As he was nearing it, however, the Porcyal's power inside of him began to grow unstable. Buhc tripped over, dropping everyone onto the ground. He began to feel lightheaded as time slowly began to go back to its normal pace. The purple Porcyal that he was using exited out of his chest and he lost his powers and his purple aura.
The Porcyal plopped to the ground as Duncan looked around and wondered how he had somehow teleported, along with everyone else.
Buhc: "We're safe now..."
With that, Buhc collapsed into unconsciousness. At the same time, Chub, Joseph, Dan and Careflower all weakly woke up.
Duncan: "What's going on...?"
In the air, the Culldrom bombing run was looking successful.
Pilot 1 (COMM): "Yeah, that's right! Take this Confederacy!"
Pilot 2 (COMM): "Destroy everything. That'll wreck their morale for sure!"
Roberts (COMM): "Let's not get distracted. We still have the element of surprise here. The Confederacy doesn't know what's happening yet. Clear out a way for the helicopters and find the prisoners."
Pilot 1 (COMM): "Yes, sir."
Pilot 2 (COMM): "Look! Down there! It's them!"
Pilot 3 (COMM): "I've got a lock on, onto them. Helicopters are you ready?"
Helicopter Pilot (COMM): "We're nearly there. Don't loose them."
The bombers and fighter jets continued to pound the arena hard, destroying everything.
Dux was having a large fit of rage.
Engineer 1: "T-they seem to b-be from Culldrome."
Dux: "Wha-just how did they go unnoticed?! Don't we have a radar system?!"
Engineer 2: "No..."
Dux: "NOBODY ASKED YOU!"
Engineer 1: "Sir, they're d-destroying the arena..."
Dux: "WELL OF COURSE THEY ARE! STOP THEM!"
Engineer 3: "What about the broadcast...and the prisoners?"
Dux: "Halt all broadcasts. I don't want to be humiliated! For the prisoners, make sure they don't escape!"
One of the engineers spoke into a microphone.
Engineer 1 (COMM): "Omega Squadron, come in. Omega Squadron."
Soldier (COMM): "S-sir, there's only a few of us left."
Engineer 1 (COMM): "Do you still have the tank?"
Soldier (COMM): "Yes, its functional."
Engineer 1 (COMM): "Use it."
Soldier: "You heard him! Go!"
Miraculously (or unfortunately) the tank was still intact. The remaining soldiers of Omega Squad squeezed themselves into the tank. They aimed the tank's large cannon at the sky and towards the planes.
Soldier: "FIRE IN THE HOLE!"
BOOM BOOM BOOM
Several shells were fired upwards. Most of them found their way into the underside of a bomber, while others rained down missing their targets. In the bomber, it was chaos.
Pilot 1: "We're hit!"
Captain 1: "How badly?"
Pilot 2: "We're leaking fuel and a few bombs have exploded."
Captain 1: "Alright. We're turning back. Good luck with the run, guys!"
Captain 2: "Thanks. Be safe!"
The damaged bomber turned back as the remaining ones got ready for another bombing run. Much of the glass dome surrounding the arena had already been shattered. As the bomber's lined up, the fighter jets scanned the ground.
Pilot 3: "There doesn't seem to be any hostiles..."
Pilot 4: "Over there! A tank!"
A tank shell flew past a fighter jet, narrowly missing it. The jet retaliated by swiftly firing a missile at it, destroying it.
Pilot 5: "Easy..."
Pilot 3: "Whatever. Alright, helicopters, the pickup is a go."
Pilot 6: "Roger."
Three helicopters hovered above and one touched down in front of the group. The rotor blades whipped the grass around as the doors opened revealing Sonic.
Sonic: "Ah, it's very nice to see you!"
Sonic: "It's Agent Sonic...now get in! Hurry!"
Everyone slowly stumbled on board. Buhc was lifted on by Joseph and Sonic. As soon as they had stepped in the helicopter took off.
Sonic: "Alright! Go!"
The helicopters slowly took off and retreated back into the night. The jets and bombers followed, escorting them. Soon, the naval fleet came into sight. The helicopters landed first and the former prisoners were rushed to the medical bay. Within an hour, the fleet started to head back to Culldrome. The Confederacy had been shaken up so much that they did not retaliate. However, one thing was certain.
War had begun.
Chapter 4: Menap Madness
A few hours later, in the early morning, the Culldrome Isles officially declared war on the Confederacy. The announcement brought a shock to Antarctica as they woke up to the news. Immediately, all Culldrome troops serving in the Frosian War were pulled out and began to be shipped back home. The few Culldrome troops in the archipelago were already assembling with fellow Axle and Western troops at Clarkson, which had now become a large military assembly point. Everyone was eager and ready to be shipped off to invade Menap Island. Steven Snowen was there, again, to farewell the troops.
Steven: "Culldrome, do your country proud. As for everyone else, your help will forever be remembered by our country. For the good of all!"
All of the Culldrome soldiers chanted their motto back. Soldiers, tanks and other vehicles began to board ships. Steven watched on from a podium, seeing his plans coming into action. The sun rose above Clarkson, signalling the dawn of end for the Confederacy. Everything ironically seemed peaceful. General Roberts appeared behind him, also watching the march.
Roberts: "Beautiful. We shall be able to crush the Confederacy with this."
Steven: "Mhm. Peace shall be restored soon enough...speaking of which, how are the...prisoners doing...?"
Roberts: "They're recovering. Come, I'll show you."
Roberts brought the Supreme Leader to a hospital complex deep in the city. They stood in a hallway and gazed into a room through a glass window on the door.
Steven: "What's their status?"
Roberts: "They seem to have been through a lot, although they'll live."
Chub, Buhc, Dan, Duncan, Careflower and Joseph were lying in hospital beds being monitored by several nurses. Agent Sonic walked up behind Roberts and Steven, carrying a large folder, and saluted.
Sonic: "Sirs. What brings you here?"
Steven: "We're checking on them. They seem to be alright. What about you?"
Sonic: "Well after seeing what they went through, I have something in mind for them."
Steven: "What might that be?"
Sonic: "You'll see soon. Just tell me when they wake up."
With that Sonic left the room, leaving Steven and Roberts, still looking at the group and thinking about Sonic's plan.
Steven: "Any idea about that?"
Roberts: "It's the beginning of the end for the Confederacy."
Solir Ryne'n was pacing up and down the surprisingly pristine halls of the Cirrus Town Hall, seat of the capital of Menap Island. His weaponry noisily clanked as he waited anxiously for the large central door to open.
Solir, one of the most notorious assassins and thieves in all of Culldrome, had recently been inducted into the Confederacy's ranks. Now one of Chairman Dux's most regarded penguins, he awaited his new mission from the puppet governor of Menap, who was appointed after the Confederate takeover. Despite the battles fought, the Town Hall was left unscathed and looked as perfect as it had always been.
Solir absently admired a portrait of a mighty Chairman Dux on the wall. Unlike any any other he had seen (or stolen, for that matter), it was elaborate and detailed. It portrayed him in an unrealistically good fashion. The style reminded Solir of the propaganda posters of Kim Il Sunguin. He imagined what it would be like to have a painting like th-
Solir's daydreaming was suddenly interrupted.
Solir: "Yes? That would be me."
Governor: "I would be the Governor of Menap Island; Governor Nicholas."
The Assassin and the Governor shock hands and began to walk through the halls of the Town Hall.
Solir: "So tell me...what am I doing here? I haven't been told anything."
Governor: "You're on a special mission appointed by our great leader Chairman Dux himself. Last night, the Culldrom attacked one of our most impenetrable bases deep within Skulldrome. Just this morning, their Allies have launched a massive attack to our north. They're probably on the island right now."
Solir: "You want me to stop them?"
Governor: "No, no, no. Confederate troops are fighting them. You will be tasked with protecting the Confederate superweapon."
Solir's eyes widened.
Governor: "Yes, its top secret. Tell no-one. Anyway, your mission is to protect it as it is transported to Shadow City, where its safer."
Solir: "So I just walk around alongside a superweapon?"
Governor: "Intel suggests that the Culldrom will be doing anything they can to get to it. Which is why we need someone like you to protect it."
The two stopped walking, in front of a statue of the Chairman.
Solir: "Fine. I'll do it."
Governor: "Good. Its not like you had a choice anyway..."
Two days later, the group of former prisoners had recovered. Surprisingly, they had all healed quickly. A few still had bandages but they were now out of their hospital beds and walking around. Sonic got everyone gathered in a small storage room, away from anyone who could hear them. He was holding an icePad with the face of the Elite Leader, head of the CSIA, on it in a video conference. Everyone else uncomfortably sat down or leant on the random boxes in the room.
Sonic: "So, I'm guessing you're all wondering what we're doing here."
Duncan: "Yeah. I'm still tired."
Sonic: "Being tired is not an option in a war. We need to fight and fighting is what you'll do."
Sonic handed everyone a folder containing mission documents. As everyone flicked through them, Careflower spoke up.
Careflower: "So you're turning us into soldiers?"
Elite Leader: "Not exactly, but I guess you could classify yourself as that-"
Careflower: "Then I'm not doing it. Us Bluetower creatures are against fighting and violence."
Elite Leader: "Hippie..."
Chub: "It's For the Good of All..."
Joseph: "Chub's right. We need to do what we can to save Culldrome."
After some thought, she nodded and agreed.
Careflower: "Fine. For the Good of All."
Sonic: "Alright. Not all of you have to do a combat role, anyway. If you look through your folders, you can see that you have been chosen to become a member of the CSIA's new special operations group: Super Seven."
Sonic: "Yes, I'm included. I'm sure you're all delighted to hear that."
Elite Leader: "You will be tasked with several missions to eventually bring down the menace that is the Confederacy. You will be alongside other Culldrom though, but it won't be easy."
Chub: "Why us then? Why not little 'supersonic' over here?"
Elite Leader: "After your performance in the Confederate Battle Dome, we thought it was a good idea to turn you into an official government group. I personally believe that you have what it takes."
Sonic: "Well anyway, your first mission will be to...er...let's say...rob a train'..."
Everyone shouted back, exclaiming their shock.
Everyone: "Rob a train?!"
Sonic: "It would be better if I showed you a map."
Sonic pulled out a small piece of paper from his pocket, unfolded it and laid it out on a box.
Sonic: "This is where we're going to pull it off: Peakshire Pass, deep within the mountains of Menap Island. There won't be any reinforcements for miles in this area."
Buhc: "So what's with the map?"
Sonic: "The plan is that we have you lot on bikes. As the train passes under this bridge here, we jump onto it. We ditch the bikes and take out anyone in our way."
Chub: "Now where have I heard this before...?"
Sonic: "We then make our way into the train cabin and slow it down. At this point, we will be deep inside this tunnel and going downhill very quickly. We have until we get out of the tunnel here to have the situation under control."
Joseph: "Now what? We drive the train into Confederate territory?"
Sonic: "By now, we'll have several Skycranes fly in through this valley in the north. We stop the train on this flat bit and quickly uncouple the cars and fly off. Simple."
Dan: "More like idiotic."
Sonic: "It's the only plan we've got."
Elite Leader: "We believe that using our own citizens as slave labor, the Confederacy has been building a superweapon as part of Project Shadow. Due to our invasion in the north, they're transporting it via the train to the south. If we seize that weapon, then we are one step closer to stopping the menace."
Sonic: "Besides that, the train will be carrying newly-mined Porcyals, weapons, ammunition, vehicles...the whole lot."
Elite Leader: "Don't think that this will be easy. Even though most of the Confederacy's troops are being distracted up north, intelligence says they've hired the expertise of highly trained militia assassins."
Sonic: "So, any objections? Good. You have until tomorrow morning to do whatever. Then we will be off!"
Sonic barged off leaving everyone pondering on what they were going to do.
April 7 2014, 5:28 AM, Northern Menap Island
The Allied forces in northern Menap continued their hard push south well into the morning. They had now managed to secure a large part of northern Menap. Both Axle and Western reinforcements continued to come in from the north at a constant rate. The Confederacy had no choice but to keep retreating south. Desperate pockets of Confederate soldiers had begun to use heavy Porcyal weaponry against their enemies wrecking havoc not only on the Allies but also themselves.
A large squadron of Culldrom soldiers trudged southward. The terrain quickly turned from flat plains to forested hills and mountains. Tanks noisily blasted the trees apart as soldiers, vehicles and artillery followed behind. There was no use in stealthiness as explosions rang out practically everywhere. The squadron was tired, not having slept as they slowly climbed the increasingly steep forested hill in front of them.
Soldier 1: "How...how much longer? I'm tired."
Soldier 2: "No time for rest. We have to fight for our country. This is our finest hour."
Lieutenant: "Shut up! Save your energy."
A General began to speak through the Lieutenant's radio.
General (COMM): "Lieutenant. We've received word from the Air Force that there is a massive Confederate stronghold southeast from your position."
Lieutenant (COMM): "We haven't seen anything or anyone. Just trees here."
General (COMM): "Well a Special Ops team is headed south of it for some important mission. I want you to attack it as a distraction."
Lieutenant (COMM): "Roger. Will d-"
A Confederate Sniper suddenly shot the Lieutenant. In one swift moment, everyone quickly ducked. Confederate soldiers began to rush out from every direction as the Culldrom soldiers shouted out commands and shrieks of panic.
Soldier 1: "Behind the trees!"
Soldier 2: "Above us! They're in the trees!"
Soldier 3: "They are the trees!"
The tanks wildly shot out in any direction. Splinters of wood and soil flew out everywhere.
A large Porcyal grenade exploded, completely destroying a nearby tank. More and more Confederate troops began flood in.
Soldier 1 (COMM): "Anyone! We need major reinforcem-"
The opposing soldiers unrelentingly attacked anyone who was their enemy. The Culldrom soldiers had no choice but to fall back or risk more casualties.
A few kilometres south of the squadron was the Super Seven group along with some soldiers. Some were pacing around while others were already mounted on their motorcycles. The group was assembled a distance away from the bridge they planned to leap off, having a clear view of the train line next to them. The moonlight dimly lit them up as they went through the final plans.
Chub: "Okay, guys. In...five minutes, a Confederate train should roll past over there. We all ride up and jump off that bridge, landing on the train. If you fall off, we have no choice but to abandon you, understood?"
Everyone murmured in agreement.
Buhc: "Some of you will get off at the rear, while some will get off further on the train. Ditch the bikes and climb into the carriages, making sure all enemies are eliminated. Once you're sure, radio in and wait until the train is fully empty."
Sonic: "Super Seven will be going to the front and taking out the driver. We slow the train down and call in the Air Force. This operation should only take us a few minutes."
The rumble of a freight train echoed throughout the mountain pass and shook the ground beneath them.
Joseph: "Everybody ready?"
Everyone not already on a bike hopped on and started them up. The deep sound of their engines grew loud as they got ready.
Duncan: "I'm scared..."
Buhc: "Don't worry. We'll be fine."
The train rounded a bend and its headlights lit up the small pass in front of it. It loudly roared past Super Seven and the bridge.
Chub: "Go! Go! Go!"
Everyone accelerated off onto the bridge and leaped off its rickety edge, landing one by one onto the train's carriages with a thump.
Sonic and Joseph leaped off first, landing near the front of the train. Both of them landed perfectly and hurriedly tossed their motorcycles off into the canyons below. Chub and Careflower landed next, followed by Buhc, Dan and Duncan. Landing back, they sped up to the front of the train and also tossed their bikes. The soldiers followed behind and everything was going well until one unlucky penguin lost his balance.
Soldier 1: "WOAH!"
The soldier toppled over into the canyons. Behind him, a shocked soldier braked hard and nearly fell off. He landed hard onto the train; his bike flying off and nearly hitting someone else behind. A domino of chaos hurled backwards as the remaining soldiers struggled to keep on.
Sonic: "Everyone alright?"
Soldier 2: "We lost Jimmy!"
Sonic: "Darn, he was a good one. We need to continue. Get into the carriages!"
Everyone slowly shuffled over and landed onto the narrow railings on the sides of the carriages. Most of them were not carriages at all and were just blankly marked container cars. Super Seven, however, landed near some occupied train carriages. They ducked and remained out of sight from those within as they made their way to the doors.
"Did you hear something?"
Gravity was seated in a little compartment with Solir in the carriage. Along with them were Confederate soldiers, scientists and important penguins in their own compartments. The two were talking to each other when they heard a sound.
Solir: "I swear if they're Culldrom..."
Gravity: "In that case I want to see how you fare. I hope you're that 'skillful assassin' you've always boasted about."
Solir: "Don't worry. I'll have the situation under control."
BANG BANG BANG
Muffled gunshots were heard from the car next to them and everyone fell silent. Suddenly everyone was screaming. Solir got up and stepped over Gravity, who was frozen in shock.
Solir: "I've got this..."
With a puff of air, Gravity teleported away using his personal Porcyal. Solir rushed over to the carriage door and pulled out his vintage sword-
The assassin was knocked to the floor by Joseph, who was followed by the rest of Super Seven as they came crashing through the door. Their little heist had begun.
A few cars back, several soldiers had cleared out the area.
Soldier 1: "Anything inside this car?"
Solder 2: "Haven't checked. Let's open it."
The soldier shot at the locks of the container's large doors. As they creaked open and moonlight streamed in, a lone Confederate soldier was revealed, holding a Porcyal.
There was a loud explosion as the two Culldrom soldiers were pushed back, falling off the train. The container car lifted off the tracks a bit, shaking the entire train.
Soldier 3: "What the heck?!"
Another Culldrom soldier was quickly at the scene.
Confederate Soldier: "Take this-!"
The Confederate soldier was shot and immediately deleted. The Porcyal he was holding fell out of his grip and rolled back into the dark container car. The lone Culldrom soldier decided to investigate.
Soldier 3: "That's a lot of Porcyals-"
The soldier had stumbled upon a large container filled with Porcyals. However, before he had any time to react, a large explosion blew him off the train. The entire train wildly shook (and nearly fell off the tracks). As the smoke cleared, it revealed a large, overpowered railway gun at the back of the train.
Gunner 1: "Excellent! It works."
Gunner 2: "There's more of them! FIRE!"
The train shook again as the railgun fired-
Super Seven had managed to penetrate the passenger carriage and aimed their guns at the penguins inside.
Sonic: "Alright. Nobody move and nobody gets hurt."
Solir, still pinned underneath the shattered remains of the door, reached out for his sword some distance away and swung it at them.
Careflower yelped in pain and distracted everyone. Catching them off-guard, Solir got up and positioned himself in a battle stance. Chub held Careflower to protect her.
Sonic: "I said...no one MOVE!"
The Agent swiveled around and swung his rifle at Solir who deflected it. Buhc also joined in, however Solir pulled out his rifle and blocked Buhc's one. As the chaos unfolded, Chub and Careflower hid in a corner. Joseph lurched towards Solir as the two puffles headed to the front, towards the frightened passengers.
Solir: "Ooooh. Three on one? Do you think that scares me?!"
Solir pushed forward and headbutted Sonic, forcing him to the floor. Joseph, missing his target, careened over into a passenger compartment. Buhc shot Solir's sword off into the distance towards the puffles.
Buhc: "Get it!"
Together, Dan and Duncan held the sword and flailed about, unable to control it.
Dan: "How hard can this be...?"
The two swung at a Confederate penguin who dodged the 'attack'. The sword came crashing through a window, showering glass everywhere. The cold, morning air rushed into carriage as the sword plunged down.
Solir: "I will end you! And your petty Culldrome schemes!"
Solir pushed the rifle where Sonic's face was. At the last second, Sonic rolled to the side and kicked Solir over, knocking the rifle out of his grip as he fell. Sonic got up and pointed his rifle at him, however Solir grabbed onto it and pulled himself up.
Sonic fired but the assassin pushed the rifle upwards; the icebullet nearly hitting Joseph and Buhc who were now in a fight with some Confederate soldiers who tried to get into the carriage.
The Agent and Assassin were now locked into a tense duel in the middle of a train carriage. Sonic tried to force the rifle back down but Solir kicked him straight in the chest, releasing the grip on the rifle and grabbing it himself.
Solir: "I see that the tables have turned-"
Buhc, after being punched hard by an enemy soldier, tripped backwards knocking Solir, making him let go of the rifle. Sonic quickly caught it and picked up the other one on the floor. Now he was pointing two guns towards Solir.
Sonic: "Mhm. More like 'turned upside down!' Ha!"
The railgun fired again, this time just as the train came past a sharp bend. Sonic fell over as Solir barked a counter remark. The wheels squealed as the carriage slowly tipped over.
Duncan: "A-ar-are we falling?!"
Buhc: "We'll see about that!"
Noticing the familiar purple crystal on Solir's belt, Buhc grabbed it and concentrated on the Porcyal. The train began to lean back, however Solir grabbed Buhc's flipper.
The Porcyal fell out of his hands, out of the shattered window and into the depths of the canyon below.
Solir and Buhc got into a fist fight just as Sonic noticed the train passing into the Peakshire Rail Tunnel.
Sonic: "We have no time for this!"
Sonic stormed off to the front carriage door and was followed by the two puffles and Joseph. Just as he was going to open the door, a Confederate soldier stepped in.
Soldier: "CULLDROME SCUM-"
Joseph, not in the mood, thew a halfhearted punch knocking the soldier out. Behind them, Buhc was easily being beaten by Solir.
Solir: "That teach you to not mess with me? Huh?! You'll be thinking second thoughts next time, kid...if there even will be a next time-"
Careflower knocked Solir out by a hit from a rifle's handle. She and Buhc got up and followed Sonic.
Careflower: "Let's go."
Chub: "Good shot!"
Buhc: "Let's go, brother!"
Chub got up and stepped over Solir, now completely passed out, and out the front carriage door. The other Confederate passengers shrunk into their seats as they trembled in fear.
Super Seven had made their way outside and onto the platform around the locomotive car. The loud diesel engine echoed in the tunnel as it belched out fumes into their faces. The wind rushed past them as the train got faster and faster on its tunnel trip down the mountain.
Joseph: "Okay. The driver's in there. We take him out and slow this down. Simple!"
Dan: "Alright lets do this..."
Dan, carrying one of the rifles from the carriage, shot the train driver, who slumped forward onto the controls. The train's engines grew louder as the train sped up.
Chub: "Quick! Slow it down!"
Solir, barely recovered, leaped up and onto Careflower. Shrieking in panic, Careflower struggled against the assassin, but to no avail.
Solir: "Alright. Nobody move and nobody gets hurt. Everything's on my side now."
Two Confederate Soldiers appeared behind Solir and aimed at the group.
Solir: "I see that you're wanting to stop this train from reaching its destination. It looks like that won't be happening."
Chub: "Let her go!"
Solir: "I'm not that nice. After all, I'm an as-"
BANG BANG BANG
Dan quickly took out the two soldiers and shot Solir in the arm. Falling backwards and fainting, he released Careflower as she fell into Chub's arms again.
Chub: "Alright. Stop the freaking train already."
Sonic and Duncan made their way into the train cabin, climbing through the shattered glass that Dan shot through-
Another train driver, hiding in a corner of the cabin, shot Sonic.
Joseph leaped forward, easily picked the driver up and tossed him out the window. Turning back to Sonic, he checked up on him.
Joseph: "SONIC! Are you alright?!"
Sonic: "Slow the train..."
Joseph quickly got up, pulled the driver off the controls and pulled all of the levers back.
Joseph: "What am I supposed to be doing?!"
Fiddling with some more controls, he eventually found the brake lever and pushed it forward with all his strength, breaking the lever handle off. The breaks loudly squealed as the train slowly but surely began to stop.
Joseph: "Okay, we're slowing down!"
Careflower (COMM): "Anyone there? The train's starting to stop. Get ready to decouple the cars once we leave the tunnel."
Soldier 1 (COMM): "We're fine back here. We're ready."
Soldier 2 (COMM): "We're also fine at the back. Good to go."
Soldier 3 (COMM): "We seem to be in a bit of a predicament. There's a couple of enemies trying to get the railgun back up!"
Careflower (COMM): "Railgun?!"
Chub: "Yeah didn't you notice the big lurching?"
Soldier 3 (COMM): "Give us a while. Any help would be appreciated."
Careflower: "Alright, someone go to the back to stop them using the railgun."
Chub: "I'll go."
Dan: "I'll follow."
Careflower: "Good. Be careful..."
Chub and Dan finally crawled through the entire train and made it to a loaded flat car next to the rail gun.
The two ducked behind a crate and meet up with another Culldrom soldier.
Chub: "I see that we're in a pickle."
Soldier: "Yes. They're relentless."
Dan, still having his rifle, tried to shoot the Confederate soldiers, but they just kept jumping out of sight, with bullets ricocheting off the metal. Soon, they began to shout something in Japanese.
Chub: "What the hec-"
The soldiers had managed to fire the railgun again. In extremely close range, a shell hit the car in front of it, blowing it up with an explosion. The train shook backwards with the recoil as the Confederate soldiers fell off the controls and onto the rails. Chub's, Dan's and the Soldier's ears were ringing from the noise.
Soldier: "Get out of here!"
Soldier: "Go! That car is on fire!"
The three quickly ran off, through the flames of the burning container car and back to the front of the train.
A large explosion in the burning car showered shrapnel everywhere. Sparks and smoke began to fly everywhere, gradually filling the tunnel.
The fire reached the railgun just as the three arrived at the front with the rest of the Super Seven. With a deafening explosion, the railgun's remaining ammunition blew up. The train rocked more violently than ever. The tunnel became a loud, fiery and chaotic scene.
Chub: "How far until the exit?!"
Duncan: "Should be coming up about now..."
The train finally emerged from the Peakshire Tunnel. Smoke and fire flew out of the exit along with the train, lighting up the dark plain before them as the sun slowly rose. The wheels, still braking, began to catch fire and add to the chaos. Joseph picked up Sonic in his arms and regrouped with the others. The sound of helicopters was a welcome sound for everyone.
Careflower (COMM): "Alright, they're here. Once we fully stop, uncouple the cars!"
Dozens of Skycranes neared the flaming train and began to strategically position themselves over the carriages.
A missile out of nowhere flew up to a helicopter, completely destroying it.
Buhc: "WHAT?!? WHAT WAS THAT?!"
Above them, a Confederate fighter jet flew low above the train, shaking the ground as it passed.
Careflower (COMM): "There's an enemy fighter jet above us! Look out!"
Air Commander (COMM): "What the heck? I'll send in some fighters. Just hang in there."
The fighter sharply flew up, avoiding the mountain in its way and turned around for another run at the helicopters.
Duncan: "Let's get in a carriage. We don't want to be left behind."
Everyone rushed into a container car filled with army-grade trucks. Chub and Buhc both uncoupled trains cars along the way. The Culldrom helicopters slowly began to hook themselves up to the train carriages.
The fighter jet downed two more defenseless helicopters. It began to circle around again for another run.
Careflower (COMM): "HURRY!"
Pilot (COMM): "We're here!"
A Culldrome fighter jet flew over and shot the enemy aircraft down with one quick attack and an explosion.
Pilot (COMM): "You're good. Get out of here!"
With a gentle jolt, the remaining helicopters took off and lifted the train carriages off the tracks. Slowly, the armada of helicopters flew off to the valley to the north, towards Allied territory.
Super Seven braced themselves in the carriage. Chub, Buhc, Dan, Duncan and Joseph sat down exhausted. Careflower and Sonic were lying down, covering their injuries. However, now everything was fine-
A helicopter was shot out of the sky, dropping back to earth along with its carriage.
Pilot (COMM): "They've brought artillery in!"
The slow helicopters tried to escape as the fighter jet began to control the situation.
BOOM BOOM BOOM BOOM
Several more helicopters were downed, but before long, Peakshire was left behind in a burning mess. The Culldrom quickly escaped north as the sun rose on a new day.
Chapter 5: Battlelines
April 7 2014, 10:48 AM, Peakshire Pass, Menap Island
Gravity was back at the exit of the Peakshire Tunnel talking with a dazed and injured Solir. They stood aside the train, now a burnt out husk and surrounded by debris and metal strewn around. Penguins tried to salvage what they could and find any
Solir: "I swear I tried everything-"
Gravity: "Quite obvious that you didn't. Now look at your failure!"
Solir: "It wasn't me! It was your incompetent soldiers-"
Gravity: "-who did what they were told and followed their orders. I see that you didn't even try."
Solir: "Okay, whatever...fine..."
Gravity: "Now because of you we've lost a multitude of hardware, including our pride, the superwe-"
Gravity turned around and faced the soldier, who was running towards him.
Soldier: "The superweapon."
Gravity pushed the little soldier out of his way and ran to some wreckage. Solir and the soldier slowly followed behind. Gravity peered into the burned remains of a box container.
Solir: "I-is it...?"
Gravity: "It's here. It's mangled up, but we still have it. You, soldier, get someone to take this back to the capital. You, Ryne'n, are a lucky man, today."
The soldier saluted and Gravity teleported off with a woosh of air. Solir was left behind to ponder his actions.
Up north, at a hastily made Allied fortress, the helicopters had unloaded their cargo and passengers. Practically everyone was being treated in the infirmary.
A nurse was tending to Sonic's injuries as he lay in a hospital bed alongside everyone else.
Nurse: "Don't worry, Mr. Boom. You'll live."
Sonic: "Well that's a very fine relief."
Nurse: "Just no strenuous activity."
Sonic: "How long until I'm back on the field."
Nurse: "Depends. Could be a few days, as long as you don't manage to kill yourself."
The nurse left as everyone began to hear shouting from outside the room. Everyone went silent as they craned their heads to look out the windows to see what they could.
Steven Snowen was with a soldier and talking about the recent mission.
Soldier: "We don't have the superweapon, s-sir..."
Steven: "Are you kidding me?! C-c-check again!"
Soldier: "We have and were are one hundred percent sure."
Steven: "S-s-so that means they have it then?! They still have the superweapon!"
Steven: "DO THEY?!"
Soldier: "Yes, s-sir. Affirmative."
Steven: "Well then that's it. We're done for!"
Steven turned around to see General Roberts.
Roberts: "Snowen! What's the ma-"
Steven: "We've lost the war, numbnuts! The Confederates have the superweapon! All this was for nothing!"
Steven: "We can't do anything!"
Steven: "Culldrome is done for..."
Roberts: "STEVEN! Shut up! Come with me."
Roberts dragged Steven off as everyone was left staring in shock.
Later, after Steven had calmed down, he was in his makeshift office at the fortress. Along with him were the Heads of the Culldrom Army, Navy and Air Force. The three stood in front of Steven who was lying down in his chair.
Steven: "So who have we got here?"
Steven: "General Roberts. Admiral James. Marshall Ericson. Sitrep."
Roberts: "The Allied forces are still making their way south through Menap Island. They're still trying to get past a large Confederate fortress in the area. After that, we can quickly take out Cirrus City before the rest of the island."
Marshall Ericson: "I have several Heavy Bombers, Fighter Jets and Aerial Attack Jets deployed to assist with the offensive."
Admiral James: "I have several ships to the north and the east. They're stamping out any Confederate resistance from the Treshurr Isles. There also seem to be a few Confederate ships going towards the mainland and Snelten Island"
Steven: "Good, good. Admiral, I want you to move most of your ships to the south of Menap Island. With the Confederacy retreating back, I don't want anyone to escape."
James: "Yes, Supreme Leader."
Steven: "How long until Menap is under control?"
Roberts: "Could take several days. A week...possibly less. With more and more of our troops and hardware coming in from Antarctica, we should be able to keep the fighting up."
Ericson: "The Confederacy are going to be using their heavy weapons. They're going to do anything they can to defend their massive production centers."
Steven: "Okay. I'm allowing you to use Porcyal bombs and anything else you need, although don't go trigger happy on them. We're running low on Porcyals, so only use them when necessary. Nevertheless, I want Menap to be taken care of A.S.A.P."
Steven stood up and saluted everyone, who saluted back.
Steven: "For the Good of All."
All: "For the Good of All!"
Back on the battlefield, the Allies had made a few advancements. They had managed to reach a large mountainous ridge that encircled the seemingly impenetrable Confederate fortress. Fighting had slowed down as preparations were made on both sides. Artillery readied themselves atop the ridge as tanks and troops underwent final preparations.
Margatian Soldier: "The Western troops are ready and awaiting orders."
Shopper Soldier: "As are the Axle forces. We're ready."
Culldrom Commander: "Excellent. Bombers and fighters are inbound to support us as we speak. So...shall we begin?"
Shopper Soldier: "Can't wait."
Culldrom Commander: "Okay. Everyone, CHAAAAAAAAAARGE!"
At the command, infantry began to pour down the ridge and towards the fortress.
The Confederacy was caught off-guard. The Allies took down many enemies swiftly. Artillery, tanks and aircraft provided support to the Allies with lots of mighty explosion.
BOOM BOOM BOOM
More and more soldiers began to fall on both sides, mostly the Confederates. The large stone walls that surrounded the fortress were slowly being chipped away by shells. Soil and rocks showered everywhere as the Allies continued their assault.
Soldier 1: "We're gaining on them!"
Soldier 2: "Go! Go! Go!"
Soldier 3: "Tanks! Blast a hole in the walls!"
Tanks made quick work of the walls and rolled into the fortress. Several thousand Confederate soldiers, perhaps everyone on the entire island, was gathered to make their final stand.
Confederate Soldier 1: "があり、ここで！"
Confederate Soldier 2: "クイック！それを使用してください！"
A ninja quickly used a Porcyal, exploding a large tank.
Soldier 1: "They've got Porcyals!"
Soldier 2: "Get them!"
The soldiers on the ground shot everywhere as more shells came from above. It was an utter scene of chaos - purple explosions lit up the fortress. The Confederacy seemed to turn the tide around. Slowly, the Allies began to be pushed back as they began to grow tired. It was a relentless stalemate.
Commander: "Don't fall back! We have this! CHARGE!"
On his command, all of the remaining tanks rushed forward, blowing up any resistance. They barged through the remaining fortress walls and encircled the remaining enemy soldiers. The aircraft and artillery began to fire out shells and bombs as a last ditch effort. The troops shot left and right. Reinforcements began to pour from the ridge above them. The ninjas continued to use their Porcyals, just tossing them into the fray like grenades, hoping to hit their enemies.
Confederate Soldier: "残りは何もない!"
The Confederate attacks began to slow down as the fortress was obliterated. Dust and debris clouded the view of everyone. As it lifted, several Allied soldiers had their rifles pointed towards the dozen or so remaining soldiers not yet crushed.
Commander: "You're surrounded!"
The Confederate soldiers raised their arms up in surrender. The Allies chanted in a loud cheer. The fortress was theirs.
Chairman Dux was in Shadow City's capitol with Gravity, who was just informed of the fate of the fortress.
Gravity: "They're relentless. They're bound to push south."
Dux: "W-w-well...d-do something! We can't afford to lose Menap Island! We've already lost the fortress and now the Allies are bound to capture it."
Gravity: "Our troops are falling one by one. Even with Porcyals, we can't put up the fight."
Dux: "Hmm...well I'll see what I can do. Leave me."
Dux: "Leave me! I need to make a call. Just stop the Allies."
Gravity left Dux and began to walk off.
Dux: "Wait. Keep the superweapon safe as well."
Gravity: "Don't worry. It should be fine."
Dux walked off into his private office, closed the door and dialed a number on the phone on his desk.
"你好. Who is this?"
Dux: "Wu Jiao? This is Chairman Blizzard Dux of the Confederacy of Independent Culldrome."
Jiao: "Ah! Chairman! I know you. You man who did war. Good job."
Dux: "Why thank you. However, I'm not calling for congratulations."
Jiao: "Huh? Why you call? I'm busy."
Dux: "I'm asking for a favour. I need troops and military equipment to fight the Culldrom."
Jiao: "Why? Why you ask? I have big war of own, see? I'm busy."
Dux: "Hold on, hear me out. All I'm asking for is several thousand of your troops. I'm sure you have plenty to spare."
Jiao: "Hmm. What in it for me?"
Dux: "Well I would be more than willing to hand over captured territory. Trust me, you're in for a good haul."
Jiao: "Hmm...不可接受. What else? Zhou not just do this you know."
Dux: "I'll open my country's ports for your trade. I'll send over money and luxuries."
Jiao: "无. Mighty Zhou already have everything it needs."
Dux: "I'll send you some of my plans, notably Project Shadow. Take a little read of it. I bet it will change your mind."
Moments later, some files were faxed off to Wu Jiao, who briefly scanned it.
Jiao: "Temptring. Temptring...细. I'll do it."
Dux: "Wonderful, wonderful. Thank you very much."
Jiao: "Although mark my words, Chairman. If you backstab us or we don't get want we wanted, we will' be invading you. You will be sorry that you ever asked us for help."
With that Wu Jiao bluntly hung up. Dux had made a big promise which he hoped to deliver.
Gravity had strolled off into the grand gardens of Shadow City. He admired the beautiful flowers and scenery around him. He was proud to be in the powerful Confederacy, and he wanted to keep it that way.
Gravity picked up his staff and with a woosh, teleported himself to Zurich, Snowzerland. He plopped himself right in front of Kaiser Swiss Ninja himself, who was taking his own walk around the gardens of Keukenhof Castle.
Gravity: "Ahhh, Kaiser Swiss Ninja. Long time no see."
Swiss Ninja: "What the heck are you doing here? How did you get in?! GET OUT-"
Gravity: "Quiet down. Don't you remember me?"
Swiss backed off and took a long hard look at Gravity.
Swiss: "You...you're that brat from Culldrome. You wasted my time!"
Swiss lunged forward and attempted to grab Gravity, but he just waddled out of his way.
Gravity: "I know, I know. I apologise for that failure. However, I have something better for you."
Gravity clicked his fingers and a folder was instantly teleported into his hands by a purple glow. He handed the folder to Swiss, who grabbed it and intently read it.
Swiss: "Interesting...but not interesting enough. Now get out before I call the guards."
Gravity: "Wait, wait, wait. Hear me out. This time we're much stronger. We've got all sorts of advanced and powerful weaponry and Porcyals. We even have the support of Zhou. With Snowzerland dedicating resources to this, we can actually take over the world."
Gravity reached out and slapped Swiss on the shoulder.
Gravity: "This isn't just a dream anymore! Our new and ideal world is just within our grasp and all we have to do is go out and reach for it. Together, we can rule the world."
Swiss' eyes lit up.
Swiss: "Hmm...fine, if that makes you leave my castle."
Gravity: "Pleasure doing business. You've made the right choice."
The two shook on it but Swiss' grip tightened.
Swiss: "Although mark my words: if you fail, then you will be sorry."
Gravity: "Don't worry. With you, everything will be fine."
That evening, the joint Allied forces finally made their way to Cirrus City, the capital of Menap Island. The sun had set on a backdrop of mountains and forests, with a few fires smouldering on the horizon. Troops and tanks paraded in and were met with very little opposition, with the Confederacy retreating south to the more important, industrial cities. Soldiers simply pointed their guns and the few Confederate citizens surrendered. As a General was clearing out the streets, a Brigadier approached him.
Brigadier: "Sir, we've been rounding up several Culldrom citizens. We think the Confederacy has used them as slave labor."
General: "Have they, now? Are they well?"
Brigadier: "Most of them seem tired and need food. Some are injured and can't walk."
General: "Okay. Get a transport here to take them out. What about any soldiers?"
Brigadier: "Well, we're rounding them up now."
General: "Good. We will need to interrogate them for any information. Get another transport and take them to Toxic Island. We'll figure out what to do with them there."
The General waddled off as more and more troops continued to pour in and head south.
Back at the Allied fortress, Super Seven had already underwent briefing for their new mission. They had big rounded up in a small side room away from all the other soldiers. Chub, Buhc, Careflower, Joseph, Dan and Duncan had adequetely recovered and were gathered around Sonic's bed along with several CSIA Agents who joined them.
Agent 1: "Well then. Are we all ready?"
Sonic: "Ready as I'll ever be." *cough* *cough* *cough*
Agent 2: "Alright there?"
Sonic: "Not really. Whatever this mission is, I probably won't be able to do it. I'll pass."
Agent 1: "Well, seeing as half of you are currently able-bodied, only a few of you will be going on this next mission. Buhc, Duncan, Joseph, you're up."
Buhc: "Well aren't I relieved."
Duncan: "What exactly are we doing?"
Agent 1: "Well, thank mister flyboy over here. You'll be doing an aircraft mission."
Duncan, afraid of flying, feigned a smile.
Agent 2: "We have intelligence reports of a Confederate cargo plane is flying in from occupied Yow. Apparently it is going to be carrying Porcyals, heavy weapons and spare parts for the superweapon. You lot managed to damage it enough to delay its deployment."
Agent 1: "Don't worry about any aerial combat or whatever. There won't be any fighter jets near the cargo plane. We've made sure of that."
Agent 2: "It's basically going to be a big haul. If you pull it off, then the Confederacy will be set back a few more weeks and we will gain an advantage."
Joseph: "Well how do we do it?"
Agent 1: "The higher-ups may not have told you why you were recruited part of this group. A big reason for that is your craziness."
Everyone huddled in together to discuss the plans. By the end of the briefing, Buhc, Duncan and Joseph were shocked.
Buhc: "Well...this will be fun..."
Chub: "I'm sure it will..."
April 10 2014, 9:19 AM, the skies east of Seacast
Above the clear skies of the Culldrom Archipelago, Buhc, Joseph and Duncan were squeezed inside a tiny Looney L40 plane. Buhc was piloting it alongside Joseph and Duncan was hiding away in the back. Their plane seemed like an insignificant, civilian plane. A distance away, in front of them was a much larger P-230 cargo plane.
Joseph: "That must be it. What's next?"
Buhc: "We have to try and get their attention."
Pilot (COMM): "Unidentified aircraft. Proximity warning. You are getting too close to us."
Buhc: "Aha. There we go."
Buhc pushed the engine lever forward and their little propeller engine roared.
Buhc (COMM): "I'm sorry, I didn't quite get the message. Please repeat."
Pilot (COMM): "Unidentified aircraft. Be advised that you are right behind us. Please divert your course."
Buhc (COMM): "There's something behind us? Alright, we'll move out of the way."
Pilot (COMM): "Negative. Please divert from your current direction immediately. I repeat, please divert or you will feel the consequences."
Buhc (COMM): "Sorry. Please repeat."
As Buhc was stalling the Pilot on the other end, their tiny plane positioned itself just inches above the cargo plane.
Pilot (COMM): "Final warning. If you do not move, we will be forced to take you out."
Buhc lowered the landing gear of his aircraft, touching down onto the top of the cargo plane. With a downdraft, the plane forced itself down a little too much. A large hole opened up as the plane wedged itself inside it. Metal debris and small pieces of cargo poured out the hole. Cables and piping flew about as air was being sucked out of the cargo hold. There were a few penguin soldiers inside the hold, caught unaware and frantically clawing onto crates as they attempted to keep inside the plane.
The cargo plane lurched to one side and began to tip over, but quickly recovered itself. Buhc's plane slowly sank into the cargo hold, wedging it even more.
Fuel was now leaking everywhere and small explosions gradually ripped the top of the plane apart, further opening the hole up.
Duncan: "WHAT'S HAPPENING?!"
Buhc: "A perfect landing! Come on. Let's get out before this thing blows."
Joseph forced a door open and the three clamored out and held onto some rope that fastened the crates inside together.
BANG BANG BANG
Despite their situation, several soldiers shot at the trio, managing to hit Joseph. In his rage, he tossed a crate towards them before running over to them and knocking them out. He picked up a snowball rifle and shot at any remaining soldiers as he rushed toward the front of the plane.
Joseph: "Come on!"
Buhc and Duncan hid behind Joseph who took a big beating. Before long, however, the cargo hold was clear of enemies and the trio kicked down the door to the cockpit.
Pilot: "For the Confederacy!"
The Pilot, improvising with a fire extinguisher, lunged towards Buhc. Dodging at the last second, the extinguisher burst open, spraying a white foam everywhere. No one could see anything. Arms flailed wildly as the three tried to take on the lone pilot. In the chaos, Duncan was tossed onto the controls and landed on the control column.
A siren sounded as the autopilot disabled itself and the plane hurled downwards. Everyone was flung up to the roof by the g-forces. Soon the foam had cleared and Joseph got a clear view of the Pilot.
Joseph: "Now, stop!"
Joseph swung a punch as the Pilot backed off into the cargo hold.
A large explosion rattled the plane and several large panels flew off the cargo hold, leaving behind a flaming skeleton. The Pilot lost his bearings and was thrown off and out of the plane.
Joseph: "That's that taken care of."
Duncan: "But the plane!"
Buhc made his way to the controls just as the plane began to spiral downwards. He pushed the throttle levers forward to gain speed. It didn't work. He pulled the control column back to get out of the dive. It didn't work. He pulled every single lever and pushed every single button but still nothing happened. The plane was doomed.
Buhc: "We're not going to make it! We have to ditch!"
Buhc looked out the windows to find the green trees of the Mossroam Forest fast approaching. Without any options left, he bent down and held tightly onto his chair.
Everyone hunkered down as the plane flew into the trees and the ground.
As the sun set that clear evening, Chairman Dux was in Monhest, a port city in the southern, Confederate-occupied Treshurr Isles. He was aboard a Confederate naval vessel, part of a giant invasion fleet bound for Snelten Island, their next target. Despite the fact that there would be a battle, the Chairman insisted that he come along anyway. As he paced along the deck of the ship, accompanied by his bodyguards, a messenger came up.
Messenger: "Chairman! I have news for you."
The Chairman stopped in his tracks and looked at the Messenger deep into the eyes. The Messenger cowered a little with fear as he spoke.
Dux: "Yes? What is it?"
Messenger: "I have both good and bad news, sir-"
Dux: "Spit it out."
Messenger: "The cargo plane for the superweapon was downed this morning. Reports say that a Culldrom strike team attempted to take the aircraft. Now its cargo is scattered all over Culldrome Island."
The Chairman frowned in disgust.
Dux: "Well, what else?"
Messenger: "We've been completely driven out of Menap Island. It is now under full Culldrom control."
Messenger: "The good news, though, is that we have a fresh new supply of troops, vehicles and equipment from our new Allies. The Snoss and Zhouese will be joining the Snelten invasion. Supreme General Gravity also has plans to fully capture Pirate City, retake Menap and possibly even the Culldrom mainland. He also mentioned that he had several battle plans that he wanted you to see."
Dux: "Good...good...however we must make haste. We need to make this Snelten attack quick. Thank you."
The Messenger saluted and then ran off. Dux stopped and stared at the sunset, which reflected over the beautiful, shallow cyan waters of the Treshurr Isles.
Out from the smouldering wreckage came Buhc, Joseph and Duncan. Against all odds, they survived, albeit with broken bones and other injuries. Joseph wearily stood up and stumbled before seeing a Porcyal in Buhc's hand.
Joseph: "Y-y-you alright?"
Buhc: "I th-I think I'm getting the hang of this."
With that, Buhc passed out and the Porcyal rolled out of his hand. Joseph decided to make up a small camp and got help from Duncan. Soon, they were all resting and bandaged up with whatever scraps they could find. The sun had long gone and they were gazing at the stars and using the (still) flaming plane as a gigantic bonfire. All dazed, they forgot all about the chaos around them and began to chat.
Duncan: "Beautiful *cough* *cough* beautiful sky, eh?"
Buhc: "Yeah. Makes you want to fly off to them on an adventure...to think that we got all caught up in this since we were bored one day and wanted an adventure."
Joseph: "Without you, I would be stuck in the middle of Mossroam, probably building a shed or something."
The three laughed, with a cough here and there.
Duncan: "I wonder what it would've been like if we weren't caught up in this. If we were off on another holiday or whatever. What was the point of this...this war...it's done nothing. Its pointless. Nothing but destruction was accomplished. Why are we still even going with it? What are we doing here? What is it good for-"
Joseph: "I'm guessing that Culldrome would probably be overrun without us."
Buhc: "Mhm...after all, we are the Super Seven. The unsung heroes of Culldrome. The heroes it needs. The heroes we need."
Duncan: "Well I wonder how the others are doing..."
Buhc: "I'm sure they're fine. Probably resting up in a hospital bed somewhere."
Duncan: "They're probably worried."
Joseph: "I'm sure they'll send a search party over. If anything, they'll still want whatever cargo they can salvage."
Buhc: "Wherever they are, we need to continue our mission. We need to make sure the cargo reaches Culldrom hands. But whatever, I'm sleeping."
With an abrupt remark, the trio fell asleep under the stars.
Chapter 6: Assault
Early the next morning, the Confederate naval fleet neared Snelten Island. Chairman Dux was already on the deck and had assembled several squads on the deck. Slung behind him, on his back, was a sheath carrying an ominous red sword.
Dux: "Alright. This shouldn't be too hard. Take over the island."
With that the ships pulled into port and hundreds of soldiers rushed off. There were Confederates, Snoss and Zhouese. All now fighting with each other. Dux remained and took out the sword. It used to belong to the Hero of Reality, one of the legendary twin sons of Mark the Warrior, the Twin Heroes. He had recovered it from Buhc months ago after he had crashed after their bombing of Culldrome City. He marveled at the sword which was now in his hands.
Dux gave the sword a few swings and felt the power of it surging through him. There was a woosh of air behind him as Gravity teleported in and appeared by his side. Gravity, too, was carrying a sword, but this time it was that of Mark himself; the warrior's famed sword. It was also obtained after the bombing of Culldrome City, from Chub.
Gravity: "Well, how are we?"
Dux: "The Assault has just started. With these swords, we can easily take over the island."
Gravity: "Mhm. Tell me, do you remember the Legend of the Swords?"
Dux replied smartly, as if he was reciting an old poem.
Gravity: "Yes. Are you willing to remind me why we're taking over Snelten Island?"
Dux: "The final sword lies here somewhere. With their combined power, we can rule the world. Superweapons or not."
Gravity: "Yes. Although our weapons are powerful, what's so bad about having a little insurance on the side? Our goals are in sight. Now it's time to get the final piece of the puzzle."
As several explosions rattled on in the distance, Dux and Gravity ran down onto the docks and entered the fray. The sun continued to rise above the snowy mountains of the island. The Confederate strike took everyone by surprise. Many were woken up by the gunfire and had no option but to surrender. There were only a handful of Culldrom soldiers, left behind to defend the island if needed. Massively outnumbered, they retreated into the heart of Snelshell City to make their final stand. Explosions continued as grenades exploded, with several buildings being set alight. Smouldering debris flew in every direction all around the city and the sky turned into an orange haze of smoke. The Confederate troops slowly made their way across eventually converging where the Culldrom had retreated to, the large library of ShellBook.
Gravity and Dux stood in front of its ornate, stone steps and exchanged looks.
Gravity: "For the Confederacy!"
Together, they ran inside with a mighty yell, followed by the troops. They swung their swords and broke open the wooden doors of the library.
Instantly, they were rained upon by ice bullets. Soldiers on both sides fell, but Gravity and Dux just ran forward. Holding their powerful Porcyal swords, they had no trouble getting past the chaos. The two leaped around gracefully, wielding their swords elegantly. Book shelves toppled over and pages flew in every direction as they made their way in. Soon, all the fighting stopped and everything was silent.
Two soldiers went up to the top of the grand library, ripped down the Snelten flag and brandished their own for all to see.
An hour later, the image of them was making headlines around Antarctica. The Confederacy had won a battle swiftly and easily.
Steven Snowen slammed his newspaper onto his table in his temporary Menap office. In front of him was General Roberts and a computer screen with the blanked out face of the CSIA Elite Leader. The two had just broken news of the capture of Snelten Island to Steven.
Roberts: "What next? Do we send in your 'special team six' or whatever?"
Elite Leader: "Super Seven, General. Anyway, half of the team is still recuperating from their earlier assignment. The good news, however, is that we've manage to recover some Porcyals and other Confederate equipment."
Steven picked up the newspaper and continued reading it, ignoring the Elite Leader.
Steven: "Even the Snoss and Zhouese are in on it. We're at war with them now."
Roberts: "That reminds me. Castillia is offering their assistance in this war."
Steven: "I don't want to escalate things, but I think we will have to..."
At that moment, a messenger carrying a folder barged through the office doors.
Steven: "Could you...knock?"
Messenger: "I'm sorry, sir. I have some bad news."
Everyone looked at each other as the messenger began speaking.
Messenger: "The Confederacy has managed to take over the Terratium Territory in the Culldrome Extraterrestrial Colonies."
Steven: "What?! When? How?"
Messenger: "Intelligence says that Snoss space fighters have invaded, just this morning. They have overtaken the Porcyal mining operation and intelligence shows that everything is in full swing."
Steven sat down hard and slammed his head on his desk. Everyone in the room had also been taken aback.
Steven: "Talk about things getting worse."
Messenger: "But there's more."
The Messenger laid the folder down on the desk. Steven reluctantly reached out and opened it. He began reading a dossier on someone.
Messenger: "That's Dr. Blowhole, sir. A top Confederate scientist. As far as we know, he's conducting scientific experiments on the moon or somthing."
Steven: "How did they get a whale to the moon?"
Elite Leader: "Supreme Leader, this Dr. Blowhole has been on the CSIA watch list for a while now. He's wanted against treason and terrorism. He's been causing trouble across the continent and here as well, including attempts to sink Club Penguin. Overall, not a nice guy."
Steven, annoyed, slammed his head onto the desk again.
Steven: "Elite Leader, I want you to send in Super Seven."
Elite Leader: "But they're still-"
Steven: "That's an order! We don't have time for shennanigans on the moon. I want them to sneak in, take the whale out and get rid of the Snoss. Take a Space Division squadron, if you have to.
The Elite Leader reluctantly saluted, before his screen turned to static. The room was silent as Roberts and the Messenger got up, leaving a stunned Steven alone and pondering.
Back at the Menap Base Infirmary, Super Seven was still recovering from their various escapades. Chub, Careflower, Dan and Sonic were now up and about, while Joseph, Duncan and Buhc were still stuck in hospital beds. Still confined in the same hospital room, an agent came in and spoke out.
Agent: "Alright, you have another assignment."
Buhc: "Ha, already?"
Agent: "No, not you. The other half will be doing it."
Chub: "Us? Well, let's hear."
The Agent briefed them on their new assignment. Their mission was simple: infiltrate the moonbase at Culldrome's Terratium Territory. They would sneak in , under the guise of carrying ammunition and other equipment. Then, the group would shut down all electrical systems before capturing Dr. Blowhole. As the scientist was captured, allied reinforcements would make a surprise attack, recapturing the territory. Without power, they thought, it would be an easy assault.
Dan: "Well, how hard could it be?"
Sonic: "With soldiers possibly at every corner and everyone being on their toes when the electricity goes out, its a suicide mission."
Chub: "Tell me, who is the person responsible for planning these missions?"
Agent: "I'm afraid that's classified."
Chub: "Well, whatever. For the Good of All."
Careflower: "Well put. When do we start?"
Agent: "A few days from now you'll be flown off. In the meantime, you are to report for 'special space training' in Culldrome City. A plane will be ariving shortly."
Soon afterwards, Chub, Sonic, Dan and Careflower were whisked away towards impending doom.
Chub (COMM): "Terratium Base, this is Firebird One, requesting landing vectors."
Before they knew it, the group had found themselves in a small cargo spacecraft all the way to the moon and deep within enemy territory. Chub was flying the craft, with Sonic as co-pilot. Dan and Careflower sat behind the two. Behind them was a large door that lead into the cargo bay. Inside were boxes and boxes explosives and other weapons, which they would be using in their assault.
Terratium Base (COMM): "Firebird One, please state your cargo."
Chub (COMM): "Ammunition and spare parts."
There was silence as space traffic control fumbled around and double checked the actual existence of Firebird One. Everyone held their collective breath but before long they were relieved.
Terratium Base (COMM): "Firebird One, cleared to land on Landing Pad Four."
Chub (COMM): "Cleared to land on Pad Four. Firebird One, out."
Dan: "Well that wasn't so hard."
Careflower: "I'm betting that they know what we're up to."
Sonic: "Then we better be extra careful."
The spacecraft landed without a hitch and everyone got suited up, picked up their weapons and went for a walk.
Careflower: "This place is beautiful!"
At her words, three Snoss TIE Fighters and a Star Destroyer flew overhead in a menacing way.
Chub: "Come on, we better hurry."
The group followed a track left by trucks in the lunar dust. It lead them to the base in the distance and to its main airlock door. With a hiss, the doors opened up and a lone soldier waddled out to greet them.
Sonic fired his pistol before the soldier could speak, deleting him instantly. The group quickly ran in, closed the airlock, made their way inside and took off their helmets. They had infiltrated the base.
Careflower: "That wasn't so hard, was it?"
Sonic: "Whatever. Now we have to take down the electricity. According to old base plans, it should be this way."
The group waddled along through the wide hallways of the moonbase. Everything was white; the ceiling, the walls and the floor. Bright lights shining from above reflected on the surfaces and everyone had to squint slightly. Soon, the group began to hear footsteps approaching.
Sonic: “Everyone, hide your weapons. I’ve got this.”
They rounded a corner and were greeted by two Confederate soldiers.
Soldier 1: "停止。あなたは誰？" (Stop. Who are you?)
Sonic: “私達はちょうど貨物に到着した。我々はそれらをアンロードするために誰かを必要としていた。” (We have just arrived with supplies. We had need someone to unload them.)
Soldier 2: "Hahaha. 私は、配信が予定されて覚えていません。" (I don't remember a delivery being scheduled."
Soldier 1: "あなたは誰ですか、教えてください？" (Tell me, who are you?)
Sonic: "私達はちょうど物資を届けるために到着。私たちは嘘されていません。" (We just arrived to deliver supplies. We're not lying.)
Soldier 2: "さて、私たちは見てみましょう。" (Well let's take a look.)
The soldiers beckoned the group to the side with their rifles and waddled off to the airlock.
In a moment, Sonic had deleted the two soldiers.
Sonic: "Alright, let's move."
The four fled off and barged through a random door. They found themselves inside an unlit storage room filled with assorted boxes labeled 'SCIENCE-DO NOT TOUCH.'
Dan: "We have to be quick! Which way?!"
Sonic was about to point off towards the generator room, when he overheard a Puffish accent talking in the adjacent room.
"My word! No, no, no, no, no..."
Careflower: "What? Who is that?"
Sonic: "That might be Dr. Blowhole. We need to get the power out, now-"
Chub: "Wait. Listen!"
Dr. Blowhole: "Listen to me! None of this, absolutely nothing will be touched by your dirty flippers. Do you understand? You are now inside a laboratory, my friend. You need to be aware of all the science standing in front of you."
???: "Yes, whatever. Just keep in mind that it wasn't easy to get you here-"
Blowhole: "I beg your pardon?! Did you just dare to comment on my stature?! Hmm?!"
???: "No, it's just...shut up! My point is that it was hard to get some random moon in this forsaken moonbase to be your private lab. This thing is a Porcyal mining facility."
Blowhole: "You don't understand, dear boy. These things in this laboratory will aid our cause. It will allow us to crush anyone who stands in our way."
???: "What about that superweapon you keep blabbering on about?"
Blowhole: "That's my pride and joy! I've given everything for that project and I will see to it that it will fulfill its purpose."
Chub (whispering): "What the heck? He built the superweapon?"
Blowhole: "Besides, I've got bigger things. Remember how the Confederacy has taken over Snelten Island? Well that Chairman and his General believe that there is something 'mystical' about that place. They blabbered on about a sword and destiny or something."
Chub, Careflower and Dan all looked at each other in shock.
Blowhole: "From the Moon, with all these Porcyals, it shouldn't be too hard to locate whatever they wanted from the island."
Sonic tapped Chub's shoulder and beckoned him to a door, opposite the one that they came in. The group got up and slowly made their way before-
Everyone looked in shock at Careflower, who had knocked over a glass beaker from an open box, shattering it on the floor.
Blowhole: "What in the world...?"
The penguin that was talking to Dr. Blowhole ran and barged through the door that the group were facing. Out came Chub 667X, decked out in his iconic suit and carrying a massive blaster gun, connected to a larger backpack.
Chub 667X: "Ah, yes. You escaped from that arena a few days ago, didn't you? How was it?"
Chub: "Absolutely beautiful."
667X: "I'm glad you enjoyed. But as you can see I'm not done with you."
Chub: "Neither am I!"
Chub lunged at his X-Antibody to punch him, but was swiftly hit by an orb from his gun. He was stunned and fell to the floor.
Blowhole: "Good heavens! Intruders! Intruders! INTRUDERS IN THE BASE! INTRUDERS IN THE BASE!"
Dr. Blowhole, being the large whale he is, hopped onto a cart and wheeled off into the hall.
Dan: "We need to get him!"
Sonic (COMM): "This is Agent Sonic, we need reinforcements, now! I repeat, send them in now!"
Dan and Sonic gave chase to Dr. Blowhole, leaving Chub and Careflower battling with Chub 667X. As soon as they left, soldiers piled into the tiny storeroom.
667X: "Hah! Too easy. Take them away."
Chub, still on the floor, tossed a mallet-like weapon towards Careflower, who was being dragged off.
Careflower: "For the Good of All!"
Careflower began to whack the guards, easily taking them down. The other soldiers fired aimlessly in the fray. Chub leapt up and grabbed his Antibody's weapon, pushing him onto the floor and forcing it away from his arms.
Chub: "Too easy, huh?"
He grabbed the blaster and aimed it at his face. Chub 667X tried to resist but Chub got to the trigger.
The blaster fired but the Antibody was able to move out of the way, in the nick of time. Careflower came by and whacked the blaster, which exploded in a shower of sparks. The Antibody kicked Chub off and he got up.
667X: "Well, you leave me no choice."
The Antibody put his hands close together as an orb of energy formed between them.
667X: "Hahaha! You will never match my powers!"
Chub got up, taking a metal stand for lab equipment and hit his Antibody's arms just as he fired the orb. The orb flung off towards the roof, blowing a massive hole and revealing the base to the vacuum of space. As air rushed out Chub and Careflower hurried out the door they came in through, struggling to not be sucked up. Not turning behind to look at the Antibody they ran off through the hallways of the base. Alarms were blaring as soldiers ran around, not noticing the two in the chaos.
Careflower: "We need to regroup. Where is everyone else?"
All of a sudden, Dan and Sonic came running past following Dr. Blowhole rolling past.
Chub: "Follow them!"
Sonic: "Mister Blowhole, please just stop!"
Blowhole: "My sir, I see no reason to!"
Dan: "We don't have time for this!"
Sonic pulled out his pistol and deleted the rear wheel of his cart, sending a massive whale shooting across a hallway and flopping onto the floor.
Sonic: "Dr. Blowhole, you are under arrest-"
Blowhole: "I won't be having any of this, fine sir. You'll have to try harder next time!"
Dr. Blowhole pushed a button on a small remote and with a woosh he was instantly teleported off, back to earth.
Careflower: "Are you kidding me?!"
Sonic: "Well allied forces should be on the way. We may not have captured Dr. Blowhole, but we can still retake this base."
BOOM BOOM BOOM
Dan: "That must be them now."
Seconds later, nearly a hundred Allied soldiers came pouring into the base. Confederate soldiers began to slowly put down their arms and surrendered. As quick as the situation escalated to, Terratium Base was now back under Culldrome control.
Chapter 7: Treshurr Trouble
Several of the Allied leaders were gathered in Culldrome City to discuss their upcoming plans. Steven was taking a leisurely walk through the gardens of his private residence, the Supreme House, along with Long Lee, Robert Smith, Iron Toto, Amigopen and King Carlos.
Toto: "These are some lovely flowers, Mr. Snowen."
Steven: "Ah, yes. But we should not get distracted. We need to talk about our next target: the Treshurr Islands. Currently, we are in control of Pirate City, the state capital. Our next step is to retake everything else."
Lee: "How exactly would we do that?"
Steven: "We're going to have to launch a massive three pronged attack out of the city going north, east and south. Hopefully we should recapture the islands of Netherwart, Northfort and Icefrost. From there, we should be able to stamp out any weak opposition in our way."
Smith: "Three fronts? We're going to take a beating. Our homelands are already being attacked in a massive campaign."
Steven: "Well I cannot do this without all your help."
Carlos: "Mhm. The price of freedom for all is high, but we must not shy away from these hardships."
Lee: "Well said."
Steven: "I've already got my top three commanders at Pirate City. They should begin their attack tomorrow. We will need tanks and foot soldiers, with ships and planes to support them. With all your help, we are one step closer to driving back this evil menace."
Little did the Allies know, their enemies were also planning an attack, on Pirate City. Chairman Dux, Gravity, Swiss Ninja and Wu Jiao were gathered in the main office of the Chairman in Shadow City.
Gravity: "We need to act. With all the Allies the Culldrome have, we cannot waste anytime."
Dux: "Yes, we've already lost our territory on the Moon."
Swiss: "Why? I wasted my precious resources and time to get that thing and now it's gone? Why?!"
Dux: "We were under a surprise attack. I believe it was the same group that caused havoc a few weeks back. We should be more cautious."
Gravity: "Add onto that that whale and that insane one."
Dux: "Mhm. Dr. Blowhole is back in safe hands, but his contraptions have all been destroyed. Chub 667X is also back, although he's suffered heavy injuries."
Gravity: "We've also had some...difficulties, with a little project of ours. Things to do with swords-"
Jiao: "Prease, let's get on with this."
Gravity: "Well, the plan is simple. We will attack Pirate City from the north, east, south and west. We will need plenty of ships to blockade the western harbor and launch from the north and south. We will have soldiers, tanks and artillery coming in from the east. By attacking from all angles, they will be unable to keep up and sooner or later we will punch through."
Dux: "After we have seized Pirate City, then we have overtaken the entire Treshurr Islands. We will be one step closer to their homeland."
Swiss: "Fine. Just as long as we don't fail, I'm good."
Dux: "No need to worry, dear Kaiser. They won't stand a chance."
Gravity: "Our attack commences tomorrow morning. Have your forces prepared by then."
Early next morning, the Allies were all ready. General Roberts was with a large battalion of soldiers on the eastern outskirts of Pirate City. Ever since the armistice of the Battle of Culldrome, a concrete wall had been hastily constructed around the city. The soldiers had gathered outside the wall, ready to head east and stamp out any opposition. Admiral James was out in the harbor in his flagship Destroyer. With him were dozens and dozens of ships from Culldrome and its Allies. Being dwarfed in the harbor were hundreds of Landing Craft, ready to head north and south. Marshall Ericson was high above, flying in a Fighter Jet in formation. Everything was set up and the attack was ready to commence.
General Roberts: "Alright, boys. Let's go!"
Unfazed, a flurry of troops marched out and began to make their way east. The land was grassy with a few hills and few trees. The soldiers made their way to the first Confederate outpost, very close to the city. Thinking that it would just be a calm and easy assignment, everyone was shocked to hear the loud rumble of artillery cannons in the distance.
Roberts: "Was that us?"
Marshall Ericson (COMM): "Oi, Roberts. I can see a big cloud of Confederate troops nearing your position. They're headed for the city."
Roberts (COMM): "Darn. I thought this was going to be easy."
Ericson's formation flew above and laid cover fire as Roberts and his soldiers bunkered down in cover.
BOOM BOOM BOOM
Shells exploded within the ranks of the Allies and several planes were shot out of the sky. The Allies were taking heavy losses already.
Roberts: "Drat. EVERYONE RETREAT! GET BACK BEHIND THE WALLS! We're too exposed here!"
The troops fled as hundreds of Confederate, Snoss and Zhouese soldiers ran after them. Bullets sprayed everywhere and shells came crashing down from above.
In the harbor, Admiral James was getting ready to head south. His fleet of ships sluggishly moved and was met by a blockade of enemy ships surrounding them.
Admiral James (COMM): "What the heck? Are they Confederate?"
Captain (COMM): "They seem to be. Should we attack?"
In an instant, the Captain's ship was directly hit and began sinking.
Cannons an missiles fired everywhere. Despite the size of the Confederate blockade, the Allies were slowly making progress thanks to their limited support from the air. Ships on both sides were sinking. Massive clouds of black smoke blanketed the harbor. It was absolute pandemonium.
James (COMM): "They were planning to attack us as well. We were caught off guard."
Roberts (COMM): "Yes, I can see that. The Confederates have pushed us back to the wall. We seem to be locked in a stalemate."
James (COMM): "We're getting there."
Ericson (COMM): "Guys, you need to pull your weight. I'm losing fighters left, right and center!"
On the other side of the battle, things were also looking grim. Not having any aircraft with them, the enemies could not easily take down the opposing fighters. The naval blockade was also beginning to lose its ground. Gravity was on the front lines, with the ground soldiers.
Gravity: "WE'VE GOT THIS! COME ON! THE COWARDS ARE HIDING BEHIND THEIR PUNY WALLS! GIVE THEM EVERYTHING!"
The artillery continued to relentlessly bombard the walls. Sooner or later it would fall, meaning the loss of Pirate City. The soldiers continued inching their way towards the city but were being mowed down by the soldiers on the wall. The tide was in their favor, though, with the enormous amount of Snoss and Zhouese troops. As more went down, even more came up to the front lines and continue their advance.
The Confederate forces on the south and north remained stranded on the beaches of their occupied islands. The ships that would ferry them over to the city were busy in the Pirate City harbor, replacing the ships going down in the blockade. The soldiers could do nothing but watch as the sun slowly rose above a blanket of smoke and explosions in front of them.
In the harbor, Admiral James was losing ships. The heavy Warships and Corvettes accompanied the Destroyers; the little Landing Craft hid behind their giant steel guardians. The soldiers inside them could not do anything, as well, but watch on. The Allies were clearly outnumbered in terms of ships.
Captain (COMM): "Admiral, we're doing very bad over here.
James (COMM): "Just hold out. Keep firing at the ships. We're not surrendering."
Captain (COMM): "I didn't say anyth-"
James (COMM): "Just go!"
A missile hit the large cannon of James' Destroyer, filling his view with smoke and debris.
James (COMM): "DARN IT, ERICSON! Get over here!"
Ericson (COMM): "You're not the only ones taking a beating! If only we had our bombers-"
Ericson (COMM): "Darn! I'm going doowwwnn--- zzzzzhhhh"
Ericson was shot down over the east of Pirate City. In his plunge, he aimed his dead fighter jet towards several large artillery cannons before quickly ejecting.
A massive explosion destroyed the cannons and killed many other nearby soldiers. Ericson parachuted down in the debris and pulled out a little rifle.
Somehow, despite the odds, Ericson was able to fight off against the soldiers who attacked him. He dashed off towards a soldier, knocking him out before picking up his rifle.
Ericson: "NOBODY MESSES WITH A TERN! AAAAAAHHHHH!"
Armed with two guns, he aimlessly fought his way back to the city limits unharmed, where he was greeted by a surprised General Roberts.
Roberts: "You're an idiot, you know?"
Ericson: "Whatever, just get on with it."
With that, Ericson ran up the wall and continued to ward off their enemy.
Roberts: "I can't just 'get on with it.' We need air support! James is losing it out there! We're going to have to abandon our north and southern landings at this rate!"
A shell impacted a weak point in the wall. It exploded and showered debris on everyone. A massive chunk of the wall was blown off as cracks began to form on the structure. Roberts and Ericson exchanged looks before taking up their arms again and continuing.
At the harbor, only a few ships remained on each side. The tide had shifted slightly, with the Confederates now having a small upper hand. The Culldrome flagship Destroyer was now heavily damaged. Only its side cannons remained, with James forced to expose the ship's large side to enemy fire.
Midshipman 1: "Sir, we're starting to run low on ammunition."
James: "Good, then if we're hit we won't explode in a spectacular fireball."
Midshipman 1: "But, sir! We're going to have to retreat. Our ship is as badly damaged as it is."
James: "Are we hit?"
Midshipman 2: "Yes, sir! Our engine systems are offline and we have a gaping hole in the hull. We're going down!"
Midshipman 3: "Sir! We're completely out of shells."
James: "Darn. Well, a Captain must go down with their ship."
Midshipman 4: "Sir! There's other ships in the harbor!"
James: "What? Are we surrounded?"
Midshipman 4: "No, sir. They're flying the Culldrome flag."
Midshipman 4: "Doesn't seem to be. Looks like a civilian ship."
James: "What? Get them out of there!"
Midshipman 5: "Unidentified ship, please get out of the area. For your own safety, please leave."
Sailor: "Don't worry, we've got this! We're here to help!"
Midshipman 5: "Please leave the area, it would help us all."
Sailor: "No, wait! We're sailors and pirates of the Treshurr Isles! If it comes to the sea, then we know it all!"
The civilian ship sailed over to a Snoss Cruiser in the harbor. Busy firing at the naval ships, they did not notice the tiny one coming right at them.
Sailor: "For the Good of All!"
The small ship hit just as the sailors and pirates on board jumped off. The ship, packed with explosives, detonated on impact. The Cruiser did not stand a chance.
Midshipman 6: "Sir, there's more of them coming."
James: "Alright. Tell everyone else to guide them in. We're getting off this ship."
The civilian ships continued to ram into their enemies. The local sailors of Pirate City were very experienced, with many having served in the Porcyal War twenty years ago. Hatching up their own plan, they decided to help the Allied navy, who were now laying cover fire to the sailors. Within moments, the Confederate ships were forced to retreat, going north and south to ferry the waiting troops into the city in their last ditch effort. The remaining Allied ships split up and followed them, with the Landing Craft trailing behind cautiously.
Meanwhile, the Allies at the wall were having trouble. The weak wall that they stood on threatened to break on them at any moment. The Confederate soldiers continued their advance and began to shoot at targets within the city.
Soldier 1: "Ha! They can't aim!"
Soldier 2: "No, look! They're attacking our buildings."
BOOM BOOM BOOM CRASH KABOOM
Shells flew close by overhead, deafening the soldiers as the buildings behind them exploded into fireballs.
Roberts: "Don't be fazed! Keep strong! We have the upper hand here!"
Soldier 3: "Are you kidding me, sir? The wall is about to collapse and they have an endless supply of troops!"
Roberts: "Just keep firing at them. We can't let our guards down."
James (COMM): "Roberts! Are you there!"
Roberts (COMM): "What is it, James? Fed up with the water?"
James (COMM): "Confederate troops have begun landing at the northern and southern ends of the city."
Roberts (COMM): "Stop them, then!"
James (COMM): "Well, if I had a ship, I would. Send in your troops."
Roberts (COMM): "We're already having trouble, here! Where are the troops that you had?"
James (COMM): "They've begun their landings, behind the backs of the enemy. It's all on you, now. Protect the city and head out east."
Roberts (COMM): "Alright, fine. Anyone in the air that's still alive?"
Officer (COMM): "Affirmative, General Roberts. We have a couple of fighters and a dozen bomber reinforcements coming in from the west."
Roberts (COMM): "Get rid of any enemies on the city outskirts, on all sides. Send the bombers into the east. We're being slaughtered here."
Officer (COMM): "Will do."
Roberts: "Alright, I need a few dozen of you to the north and a few to the south. The rest of you, stay here!"
The ground beneath the soldier's feet began to rumble and shake. Everyone held onto whatever they could and some lost their balance entirely. A mighty explosion rocked the wall as a shell busted a hole in. The battered concrete above gave way as many soldiers fell into the firing line of their enemy. As soldiers on both sides realized what had just happened, chaos ensued.
Gravity: "GO! GO! GO!"
Roberts: "STOP THEM!"
Soldiers on both sides piled up at the breach. Every second, scores of soldiers fell. Explosions flashed and flared as the sun rose up and a blue hue painted the sky. The Confederacy was fierce. Ever so slowly, they inched their way, advancing from the breach in the wall. The Allies could do nothing but slowly fall back. General Roberts, still strong, grabbed his trusted pistol from hammerspace, jumped over the wall and into the fray.
Roberts: "ARGH! TAKE THAT YOU LOT!"
BANG BANG BANG BANG BANG
It was an amazing sight. The little puffle was jumping around and blasting everyone near him. As he shot someone, Roberts bounced off of their shoulder before blasting someone else and jumping off them. He was fast. He was nimble. He was General Roberts, in a rage. It was inevitable that he bounced his way to Gravity. The two generals locked eyes.
Gravity: "Ah. Are you the leader of that idiotic Culldrome army? Aren't you a little small?"
Roberts: "WHY YOU-"
Roberts leaped up to Gravity, flailing his pistol. Gravity raised his staff to block him. Roberts fired, but the bullets simply bounced off the staff. Overhead, the distant drone of dozens of bombers roared as they neared their target and released their bombs.
KABOOM BOOM BOOM
As the soil around them was obliterated, Roberts and Gravity battled it out. Roberts bounced all around, jumping from Gravity's shoulders and those of anyone else around them. Roberts relentlessly fired at very close range. The noise of falling bombs around them and the pistol against their ears deafened the two. Gravity blocked the strikes against him, as if he was wielding a Keysaber. His staff, seemingly indestructible, reflected the strikes against him, shining purple a little bit as bullets hit it. Roberts was wild. He was not tired at all, but Gravity effortlessly swung his staff. The duel seemed stalemated until Roberts inevitably ran out of bullets and Gravity struck, stunning him onto the ground.
Gravity: "What's wrong, Puffle? Do you not just give up?"
Roberts: "Never! Us Allies will win! For the Good of All-"
Gravity swung his staff, hitting Roberts like a golf ball. The General soared off into the sky and back over the wall as bombs continued to fall from above.
Confederate Soldier: "RETREAT! RETREAT!"
Gravity looked around him to see bombers decimating his troops as the Allies slowly advanced out from the wall. With a glare, Gravity teleported away from the action and back to Skulldrome. Just as he left, an onslaught of Allied troops chased the Confederates away. Meanwhile, the Allies had also made ground, taking their northern and southern targets. Soon, most Confederate influence around Pirate City were gone. Over the next few days, the Allies cleared out the Treshurr Isles, the same way that the Confederates invaded all those months ago. Culldrome and its Allies shared another victory.
Chapter 8: The Long Game
April 23 2014, 8:41 AM, Shadow City, Skulldrome Isles
The morning after the fall of the Treshurr Isles to the Allies, the Confederate Officials and their own allies had gathered at the capital. Chairman Dux and Gravity were with Swiss Ninja and Wu Jiao, along with the officials. They were inside Gravity's office and discussing their next moves for the battle.
Jiao: "Now what are we doing? We've lost thousands of men to those pesky Allies!"
Swiss: "Yes. We've faced constant defeat after defeat. First the Lunar Territory and now an entire state. I thought that this was going to be an easy haul!"
Dux: "Yes, yes. Despite our failures, we must remain civil-"
Swiss: "Civil?! ARE YOU KIDDING ME? YOUR ARMY IS NOT THE ONLY ONE THAT'S HAD MASSIVE LOSSES! IF WE CAN'T GET ANY ACTUAL VICTORIES, THEN I'M PULLING OUT OF THIS WAR!"
Official 1: "Please, Kaiser. We cannot afford a loss of our best ally in the middle of the war."
Jiao: "Your best ally! What about me?!"
Dux: "You two are our only allies. We're going to need everything that we've got to keep up the fighting. We may be losing now, but with your help we can win this."
Swiss: "Oh please. Just shut up with whatever you have to say!"
The three continued bickering as Gravity just sat in his ornate office chair and sighed. He reached into his cabinet and pulled out a red folder.
Gravity: "Everyone! Shut up!"
Despite Gravity's calls, everyone still argued nosily.
Everyone went quiet all of a sudden and turned to Gravity. He held up the red folder and pointed to it.
Gravity: "I was going to save this for later however since you all want to leave, I'll show this off now."
Gravity opened the folder onto his desk and pulled out a large map of Antarctica.
Gravity: "Behold! Operation Overpower."
Everyone ooohed and aaahed at the map; they just stared on in disbelief at Gravity's top secret plan with mouths gaping wide. Even the Chairman, who knew about the plan, couldn't help but chuckle in awe.
Gravity: "My dear friends, this is the key to winning the war. We take out Antarctica's largest and most powerful country. We would be unstoppable."
Everyone murmured in agreement. Chairman Dux stepped forward.
Dux: "Please, General Gravity, explain our plan."
- 1-We will invade the small island states of Life Island and Lowlaw Island. They will become launching points as we land on the Antarctic Mainland near the islands.
- 2-After performing a massive landing operation, our forces shall gradually take over the Antarctic states of the Antarctic Peninsula and Trans-Antarctica. To prevent large losses, we shall turn towards attrition warfare.
- 3-Our two fronts shall converge before making a final massive assault towards South Pole City.
Everyone was silent at the ambitious plan. Gravity was pleased at himself and smugly grinned in his chair.
Gravity: "Well? What have we to say?"
Jiao: "You are mad man! This is impossible!"
Dux: "Which is why we need your help."
Swiss: "Hmm...it is possible...perhaps this time we shall prevail. I'm in."
Dux: "Excellent. What about you, Mr. Jiao?"
Jiao: "Whatever. I'll stay."
Gravity: "Wonderful. Now we have to gather our troops. Swiss, you will be deploying from Snoss Yow along with my forces at the occupied Culldrome Yow. Jiao, you will be deploying from north of your country. I'll send off my ships and landing craft to aid you two. A couple of days from now, we will attack those puny islands and set up our bases. Then, I shall give the signal and we will simultaneously attack Antarctica. They will have no idea what hit them."
Official 2: "Also please remember that time is of the essence. Everyone is still busy fighting in the Frosian War to the northeast. If we attack early enough, we can effectively slip in unnoticed. The USA can't afford to fight a war on two fronts."
Gravity: "Three. Three fronts. We will take over the Antarctic Peninsula and Trans-Antarctica."
Official 3: "Even better! They won't stand a chance!"
Gravity: "Were you even listening-"
Dux: "So it is settled then. I hope we will be able to win this war."
April 27 2014, 5:54 AM, Off the coast of Life Island
A fleet of ships and landing craft had gathered on the coast of Life Island, lead by Swiss Ninja. They were ready to enact the first phase of Operation Overpower. This had not gone without any planning. The Confederacy continued their attacks in the Culldrome archipelago, so as to not draw suspicion to the operation. The second half of the Operation Overpower invasion fleet were on their way to Lowlaw Island in the south. However, Swiss' fleet was tasked with attacking first.
The Kaiser stood out on a viewing deck on a large Snoss Battleship. In the distance was the tiny settlement of Hudson. The sun rose on another day as the attack was about to commence.
Swiss: "Alright, let's move!"
The ships sailed into the tiny Hudson Harbor, where the capital was situated. The Snoss made swift work of the settlement. Their massive ship cannons fired loudly, destroying anything that stood in their way. Several tiny landing craft quickly docked. Troops spilled out onto the streets of the capital as fires blazed around them and debris fell from the air. The citizens of the island simply had no chance; they only had a tiny police force, which was quickly wiped out. Within minutes, the island fell and Swiss was taking a stroll around the ruins with some soldiers.
Swiss: "Do you think we over done it?"
Soldier 1: "Not at all, sir."
Soldier 2: "I think that we've done it perfectly."
Swiss: "Get the rest of our troops on the island. Make sure everyone is settled in."
Soldier 3: "What about the citizens?"
Swiss: "Do what you like. Enslave them or something! I don't care."
A few days later, an attack fleet neared Lowlaw Island. The fall of Life Island made very little news. Due to its small size and population, practically no-one noticed (or cared about) the attack. However, the Zhouese and Confederate attack on Lowlaw would get everyone's notice. Wu Jiao was aboard a flagship of the attack fleet and was ready to issue commands.
Jiao: "Is everybody ready?"
Soldier 1: "是的，先生!" (Yes, sir!)
Jiao: "This shouldn't be too hard. Attack!"
Like the Life Island attack, the Lowlaw Island invasion was swift. The massive ships sailed in from the northwest, attacking the island's many docks and its only airport; the lifelines of the island. As smoke billowed and debris flew, the landing craft carried hundreds of soldiers onto land. Again, there was very little resistance as soldiers steamrolled through the busy streets. They made their way south, skirting the foothills of the central mountains of the island, towards the large capital city of Portland. The troops easily fought off what stood in their way and soon found themselves at the capitol.
Soldier 1: "To the captiol! Take down their flag! Defeat anyone who stands in your way!"
Soldier 2: "Go! Go! Go!"
With spirits high, the soldiers ran in. In the hour since the landing on the island, Lowlaw's police force, able-bodied citizens and even the criminal organisations in Lowlaw's Ungolia provinces all banded together in a last ditch effort to defend their island.
Fighter 1: "Stand up and fight!"
Fighter 2: "Do it for Lowlaw!"
Despite their willpower, the local Lowlaw fighters were crushed by the Zhouese and Confederate forces. Lowlaw Island had fallen to them. News soon broke out and the USA threatened to enter the already growing Culldrome war.
The Confederacy and their allies were in good spirits. Soldier morale was at an all time high following the swift captures of two islands. Their forces continued to grow and consolidate on their new island bases. Fresh troops, supplies, vehicles and weapons arrived in anticipation for war against the mighty Antarctic superpower. Very little clean up had happened since the attacks. Vital areas such as the docks were kept safe; they were to be the launching points for the massive invasion.
The war in the Culldrome Theater had not slowed down. The pace was still kept as allies on both sides reinforced their positions. The USA held talks with Culldrome, who just talked down the Life and Lowlaw Island invasions as a simple show of force, but were prepared to join the war if necessary. The Confederates, wanting to make sure that they were truly ready, held out for a few more days for more troops to arrive.
Then, in early May, the massive attack began.
Hundreds of ships and other landing craft left the two islands. The Snoss headed the northern attack and the Zhouese the southern. The Confederacy had split themselves between the two fronts. In the night they neared the Antarctic coast, big, white and quiet. Wanting to gain a foothold, the invaders aimed for cities and towns on the coast. The landing craft made their way onto the beaches, facing very little opposition. However as the attack neared the cities, the superpower began to wake.
May 2 2014, 2:03 AM, Northern Front, Shiverpool
Hundreds of soldiers landed on the outskirts of Shiverpool. Tanks and aircraft also came in to support their position. Just like their previous attacks, the soldiers burst into the town and had little opposition. Explosions rattled houses as residents of the quaint city ran for their lives.
BOOM BOOM KABOOM
Factories and docks in the city's Industrial Zone were destroyed, crippling the local fishing industry. But as the battle raged on, any industry did not matter. Citizens fled from the city, driving off in any direction, anywhere but their ravaged home. The soldiers easily made their way to the capitol and took over the now empty city.
Leaving a few men behind, the soldiers continued. Some made their way north to capture any outlying villages and towns, but the majority traveled south to more major cities. It wasn't before long that the Antarctic military heard of the invasion and sent off fighter jets to destroy the invaders.
Soldier 1: "They've found us!"
Soldier 2: "What do we do?!"
Commander: "We act out our plan! Everyone, dig down! We're lying here for the night!"
The soldiers halted their advance and quickly unpacked their equipment from the supply trucks. They took out drills, shovels and jackhammers and slowly began to dig a trench. The bombing from above only helped their digging, albeit in a messy way. Many soldiers and tanks were blown apart by the Antarctic bombers, but hundreds more came to replace them. The soldiers continued their digging, despite being under heavy fire. In the end, the Confederate and Snoss soldiers bunkered down in their newly dug trenches, along with several freshly dug rooms.
It was an amazing feat. The fighter jets above flew back to base, out of bombs and feeling dejected.
May 2 2014, 2:18 AM, Southern Front, Sunshine Fjord
Down south, Zhouese and Confederate troops landed on the Sunshine Fjord. Lead by Wu Jiao, they met little resistance until they headed north. Following the Sunshine River, soldiers and tanks trudged through the rough landscape going towards the Trans-Antarctic mountains.
Soldier 1: "How much longer? I'm tired!"
Commander: "Shut up! We have a long while to go if we are going to call this a victory."
Soldier 2: "But look at that!"
The soldier pointed to the towering, snow-capped mountains that lay in the distance in front of them. The Sunshine River gushed from the mountains and created a gorge that was like a pathway leading them forward. The river channel rose up in the distance, disappearing deep within the mountains. It would be a challenge for anyone, let alone tanks and other heavy equipment, to pass over them.
Commander: "You don't have a choice. You're either going to climb that, or we will just leave you here."
Soldier 2: "No, look!"
In the distance, Antarctic bombers appeared on the horizon, ready to rain fire.
Commander: "Everyone bunker down! Get your equipment out! We'll be waiting a while!"
As the word passed around and the droning noise of the bombers approached, everyone took out shovels and began to dig. The bombs began to drop but, unlike before, the blasts were concentrated due to the geography.
Soldiers were obliterated. Many survivors began to flee and hide behind whatever rock or crevasse that they could find, while others reluctantly kept digging.
Commander: "STOP FLEEING! DIG! DIG YOU FOOLS-"
The Commander would've wished that he fled. More and more bombs kept falling and the troops were getting wiped out. A Confederate General stepped forward in the chaos.
General: "For crying out loud..."
With an almighty purple flash and an explosion of soil and dust, the General used up a Porcyal. A couple of bombers fell out of the sky and a set of hastily dug trenches appeared before him.
General: "EVERYONE INTO THE TRENCHES!"
Several more bombers exploded above as the few remnants jumped into the trenches and sought shelter. The bombers turned back and the invaders began to look at their losses and recuperate.
Several hours later, the Confederate, Snoss and Zhouese troops had holed themselves up nicely. The makeshift trench system worked well, sheltering thousands of troops from Antarctic bombing raids. The tanks were parked up on the surface, waiting for the troops to settle in and recollect themselves. The first battles were not with little loss. Many fell as the trenches were set up and during the initial landings. It seemed as Antarctica was simply brushing the enemy advance away with ease. However, the Confederacy and their allies were prepared to hold out for as long as they could, months or potentially years if they could keep their defences up.
At dawn, the two fronts continued their advance. A small squadron of a few tanks and soldiers lead the way as the bulk of the troops trailed behind, slowly digging an advancing set of parallel trenches with Porcyals, bombs and heavy equipment. Bombers continued arriving from above, destroying the leading squad and defeating some in the trenches. The two fronts made very little progress by the first day. The Northern Front had just cleared the icy outskirts of Shiverpool and the Southern Front had only advanced several miles. The task of taking an entire continent (and superpower) seemed daunting.
That evening in the North, Swiss Ninja had arrived at Shiverpool, which was now empty and in ruins. The city had become the de facto headquarters of the Northern Front from which the invasion was lead from. Swiss Ninja arrived in the city library where other generals had packed in to.
Swiss: "Great job on the landing, men. How is the advance going? Have we made more ground today?"
General: "Kaiser, the troops have barely made it out of the city. Bombers keep arriving and obliterating our forces. We simply don't stand a chance! The same thing is happening down south!"
Swiss: "Rubbish. This city is firmly in our hands now. It shouldn't be hard to do something about that then. Send fighters up to intercept those bombers."
General: "As you wish-"
Swiss: "Actually, no, I have a better idea. Send those fighters in and get the troops out of the trenches. It's literally doing nothing but halting progress. By tomorrow, I want the Northern Front to have captured fifty miles of land! If not, then there'll be consequences."
The two saluted and Swiss stormed off as the General swallowed in fear.
The next day, the Northern Front went ahead with Swiss' plan. Chairman Dux and Wu Jiao were furious and the Southern Front went on as normal, slogging behind in digging trenches. Snoss fighters engaged Antarctic bombers, downing many of them; there were only a few successful raids by the bombers. Down below, troops quickly advanced in a blitz. Tanks made easy work of and opposition and small towns in the countryside were taken. Before long, the troops began to head slightly south, going down the spine of the Antarctic Peninsula and Swiss' fifty miles were easily captured. The troops slept easily after a day of long, brisk marching.
Down south, there were heavy losses of both soldiers and tanks. The troops' morale was worsening.
Soldier: "This whole thing is useless! We're not even going to reach those mountains!"
Other Soldier: "Heck, I don't think we'll even last until tomorrow!"
Another Soldier: "Both of you shut up and dig! The only reason we won't make it to the mountain is because of your blabbering!"
Soldier: "Blabbering! I'll show you-"
In the distance, staring at the fighting soldiers, Wu Jiao and Gravity were talking with each other, not even bothering about the fight brewing.
Jiao: "They right you know. We will never make it up the mountain."
Gravity: "Oh don't worry. I've got a couple of Porcyals up my sleeve. Besides, we've made progress today. At this rate we will reach those mountains by-"
Jiao: "Next year. The Northern Front is advancing rapidly."
Gravity: "Well you're right. We will reach it next year. By then, the USA would have thrown everything at us and they'll slowly run out of things to throw. I hope your troops are prepared to wait."
May 7 2014, 11:42 AM, Northern Front, Antarctic Peninsula
The Northern Front had made massive progress. They had captured the city of EmotiVille and were working their way south to East Bank City. The Antarctic bombing raids had stopped the day before, much to the joy of Swiss, thinking his grand plan had worked. A massive line of tanks rolled in formation as thousands of troops followed behind in the flat, icy expanse of the western Peninsula.
Swiss Ninja himself was riding a tank on the front lines, eager to reach the capital. The noise of several dozen tanks roared with might. Swiss gazed to the flat horizon, thinking of South Pole City lying far beyond just out of his reach. His daydream was rudely interrupted as the ground rumbled ever so slightly. One might've thought that it was just the vibration of the tanks, but Swiss knew something was up.
Swiss: "Did you feel that?"
Soldier: "WHAT?! I CAN'T-"
Swiss: "DID YOU-"
Swiss was again interrupted as he felt another jolt. He instinctively looked ahead and saw a blanket of dark fog in the distance. He looked at it more closely and saw that it was not fog.
Swiss: "TROOPS! AHEAD! LOOK!"
The tanks slowed down but the rumbling persisted. It was coming from an almighty blanket of Antarctic soldiers, rolling in. Swiss jumped out of his tank and ran back, pushing through rows of soldiers.
Swiss: "GET THEM!"
The tanks took aim and the troops dug in, ready for assault. The two opposing sides were on flat ground; it would be a fair fight.
BOOM BOOM BOOM BOOM
Both sides attacked each other with ferocity. As many on both sides fell, the outcome became clear. The Snoss and Confederate forces began their retreat, the first loss of gains in Operation: Overpower. By the time the Antarctic forces began their retreat, the Northern Front had lost several days worth of advancement. Several thousand had fallen and a very small force remained after the attack. Swiss had fled entirely, taking some soldiers with him and going back to Shiverpool. That night, he held a telephone conference with Wu Jiao and Gravity down South.
Gravity: "I only see one problem here, your retreat."
Swiss: "How dare you. My troops aren't just dying for nothing, you know!"
Gravity: "Whatever, I don't care. How much have you lost?"
Swiss: "Over 80% of our soldiers. As for tanks, we only have fourteen."
Jiao: "Well get some more, then!"
Swiss: "It's not as easy as that you know. We've lost a lot of territory, too."
Gravity: "Mhm. It will take a while for reinforcements to get to your position, even longer for us down south. I'll tell you what, we'll consolidate our remaining forces. Let's get all of our reinforcements onto the mainland. At this point the war is on Antarctic soil and the Culldrome part is as good as over, for now anyway."
Jiao: "Good idea. With all of our firepower on the mainland, we should have no difficulty getting to the capital."
Swiss: "Fine then, we'll put all our eggs in one basket."
Gravity: "Two baskets. Besides, if we're successful then we will own the basket anyway."
May 9 2014, 6:02 AM, Southern Front, Trans-Antarctica
It was a brisk start to the day on the Southern Front. The cold, icy winds from the Trans-Antarctic mountains swept down towards the troops. The trench strategy was still being used. The troops were beginning to get up for another day of digging. Some even wondered why companies were not hired to simply dig. Wu Jiao and Gravity were also up early in the day, ready to command their weary troops.
By now, plenty of Zhouese and Confederate reinforcements had arrived. Culldrome was now practically empty, save for some tiny pockets of Confederate soldiers remaining to stand guard. Gravity was out on the surface overlooking the massive system of trenches that they had been digging from the coast. Miles of barbed wire lined the outer edges as the main twin pair of parallel trenches advanced ahead, with the smaller trenches and underground rooms located in between.
Gravity gazed up at the towering mountains ahead. It would be a daunting task for anyone, let alone an army, to climb up. However, he thought, it would offer some much needed shelter from Antarctic bombing raids.
At that thought, Gravity could hear a deep rumble in the distance as Wu Jiao approached.
Gravity: "Is it my ears or do I hear a rumbling?"
Jiao: "Be careful, that's what Swiss said he heard before the attack."
Gravity: "Pfft. Please. We've got a massive trench defence and far more troops that we can handle ourselves. We should be fine."
Jiao: "I hope you are."
Jiao walked off as Gravity continued staring. The rumbling noise got louder and louder and he began to see tiny glints of light up in the sky.
Gravity: "Darn, another bombing raid."
But it was not just a bombing raid. Gravity looked down towards the mountains. Ten thousand troops were storming towards them, fast. They were not just Antarctic; Western and Castillian troops were also with them. With the cramped trench system, a retreat would be difficult and the only easy way out would be to the Sunshine River to the east.
Lookouts soon saw the incoming onslaught and troops got prepared to fight. Gravity was a smart penguin. He knew his troops would be swiftly defeated.
Gravity: "I've made a huge mistake..."
Jiao: "GRAVITY! THEY'RE HERE!"
Gravity then got down into the trench and grabbed Jiao, taking him back.
Jiao: "Hey! Where are you taking me?!"
Gravity: "Come with me if you want to live."
With that, Gravity let go of Jiao and grabbed several Porcyals out of his pockets and tossed them out of the trenches.
Gravity: "I would run if I were you."
The Porcyals simply exploded, covering Gravity and Jiao's escape as the two large armies fought each other off in the massive chaos that followed.
General Roberts was at a top secret military installation just outside South Pole City. He was joined with other Antarctic generals, officers and soldiers; he was the only foreign one there. They were all leading the battles that were simultaneously occurring at the Northern and Southern Fronts, with everyone doing something different. Some were manning consoles on the edges of the room while others were gathered in the middle, around a high-tech table with holograms on it. The table, displayed a map of Antarctica and Confederate, Snoss and Zhouese troops being driven out off the mainland.
Roberts: "Well done. They're going home. How much longer until they're all out of here?"
General: "A day or two. We've recaptured hundreds of square miles of territory already. All those who cannot escape our death wave will be captured."
Lieutenant: "Don't sweat, General Roberts. Its all under our control. We're on the way to capturing thousands of enemy soldiers.
Before long, the General was right. Allied forces from both the Northern and Southern Fronts pushed the armies out. They were beaten out past Shiverpool and the Sunshine Fjord, with the few escaping remnants fleeing from whatever boats they had. The Allies had gained another massive victory in an already escalated war, stopping the large enemy war machine before it could swell any larger.
Chapter 9: All Downhill
May 10 2014, 9:42 AM, Culldrome City, Culldrome Isles
The Confederates had suffered a massive defeat in Antarctica. More than two thirds of the Confederate army were either wiped out or captured during the devastating Antarctic campaign; their allies also had heavy losses. Morale was at an all time low, as was the production of vehicles and weapons. Back in the Skulldrome Isles, food shortages became more frequent as an enormous amount of supplies and support was put into the campaign. The Confederacy was beginning to go downhill, with Chairman Dux and Gravity both very angry.
It was a different story in Culldrome City. In the Capitol, Steven Snowen was enjoying a celebratory drink with his close advisors and the Military Heads.
Steven: "Ah, everything is getting better! We might actually win this war."
General Roberts: "Hey, no jumping the gun here. There are still large amounts of Confederate territory to be taken and not to mention their allies. Nonetheless, the tide is finally turning to our side."
Marshall Ericson: "He's right. The Confederacy is desperately trying to stand up, but with some more hard work we can bring an end to all of this. What am I saying...its still too early to celebrate! We still need several victories ahead of us. What about Snelten Island and Culldrome Yow?"
Admiral James: "You'll be needing your navy, if that's the case. I can help with that."
Steven: "We'll need our allies as well. Hmm...in that case, we would need to draw up some battle plans."
Slamming his glass on his Supreme Table, Steven stood up and shouted for everyone, except the leaders, to leave the room. After much annoyance, everyone put their heads down and before long, squadrons were sent to Snelten Island and Culldrome Yow.
A battered group of ships hastily made their way to the northern coast of Snelten Island. A small handful of ships, Culldrom, Shopper, Castillian and Margatian, closed in. They were loaded with a relatively small group of soldiers, those that could be mustered up in the aftermath of the battles in Antarctica. Along with them were three jets, a bomber and four tanks in total. In lieu of troops, the Allies were also bringing in all sorts of aid, in the form of food, first aid and clothing. A month of occupation would not have gone well for the population of RocketSnails. Despite the tiny amount of fire power, there were few Confederate, Snoss and Zhouese remaining on the island, as the rest had also gone off to fight in Antarctica. It would not be a hard battle.
Admiral James was leading the entire operation from a large Culldrom Destroyer. From inside the bridge he gazed upon Snelten. A large cloud of haze blanketed the island, heavily limiting visibility. James did not lose heart and pressed on.
Admiral James (COMM): "Alright, are we all ready for this?"
Captain (COMM): "Yes, sir. You can lead the attack."
James: "Good. All cannons, FIRE!"
The Destroyer released its mighty firepower, with massive shells flying off and hitting targets behind the haze. The ships behind it followed, raining down destruction onto the island.
BOOM BOOM BANG KABOOM
The ships continued to close in, forming a semi-circular arrangement that tightened into the Snelshell City docks. Aircraft above dropped bombs as the ships continued firing. On the island, there was no response at all.
James (COMM): "We're knocking but they can't hear us. Keep it up!"
The ships slowly entered the haze and all of a sudden, they could not see anything. Admiral James ordered the cannons to stop, fearing friendly fire, as everyone got ready to land on the island.
James (COMM): "This is it! I don't want anyone shooting anyone unless you're absolutely sure that they're Confederate. I really do not want to fill out paperwork on someone shooting someone in the shoulder."
Troops began to line up on the decks of the ships, all tense at the situation. In the fog and the tiny harbour, several ships ran into each other. Steel grinded onto steel as the ships began to tilt.
James (COMM): "Everyone, stop! This is hard enough as it is."
Captain (COMM): "Well, sir, I guess where ready for the landing."
James (COMM): "Then what are you all waiting for? Go! Go! Go!"
Gangways were lowered onto the docks and icy shores of Snelten Island as scores of soldiers flooded out. The tanks clattered their way onto the dock. Rifles drawn, they turned around and around, looking for any tiny movement in the shadows in front of them. Soon everything was quiet, save for boots walking on freshly fallen snow. The wind began to pick up and the soldiers had only walked up to the street lining the dock.
WOOSH WOOSH THUMP
Everyone turned to the front, where the sound came from and saw two soldiers fall from sniper fire. Everyone hit the dirt as the enemy in front of them continued attacking them from their vantage points. The Allies were caught in the open, and the enemies could have been anywhere; in the buildings, in the hills or on the streets along with them. The soldiers frantically looked around to see where the fire was coming from and shot blindly at the general direction. The tanks, too, were having difficulty shooting from their small ice-bullet machine guns. Giving up, they resorted to their large cannons and fired loudly in the haze.
Everyone's ears rung as the tanks provided support from behind. Gathering up some courage, the soldiers got up and scattered, scanning the area for the enemy snipers. The sound of rifles echoed in the haze as very, very slowly, the Confederacy was beaten back towards the town center, the ShellBook Library. The troops followed in earnest. The Confederate flag, hanging limp, hung from the roof of the library; once proud now half in ruins. The soldiers stormed the library and cleared out the soldiers who had camped inside for their last stand. It was like the Confederate take over a month ago, and soon the last enemy soldier was shot as the haze lifted and everyone was sure of the outcome. Admiral James left his ship and was escorted into the library.
James: "Well done. The city, no, the island is ours!"
The Allies erupted into cheer and the Culldrom flag was replaced on the roof once more.
Later that day military patrols swept across the island distributing aid and stamping out any resistance. James and several officials were being trucked off into a small military installation on the outskirts of the city. There, they investigated to see if the Confederacy had managed to find it. The base was in poor condition, suffering damage from bombing runs. A lone elevator remained in the centre of the base which James and the others rode down in. Plunging into the depths of the base they arrived at a large circular room filled with screens and consoles. Everything was in pristine condition and left untouched.
James: "Well what have we found here."
Official: "Seems to be the secret CSRA Base. I believe this is home to the only Porcyal-accelerator in the world."
They all paced around and saw that, around the corner, the base was obliterated. Wires hung from the ceiling and most of the rock around the base was exposed.
James: "Was the accelerator ever faulty?"
Official: "No, although its earlier tests had some strange energy interference."
James: "Then what happened here?"
Lieutenant: "Look, over there in the corner. That seems out of place in this big science lab."
Everyone approached to where the lieutenant pointed to. It was an old yellowing, crinkled piece of paper. It threatened to break if it was even breathed upon. James read an inscription on it from a distance.
James: "If you thirst for integrity and creativity, like this hero, then your quest takes you to the ruins of a fortress, on the doorstep of evil. What?"
He looked around. Beside the piece of paper was an old box, slightly tinted green. Its lid was already off and the inside was empty. He pondered for a while and then realised what it all meant.
Lieutenant: "What is it?"
James: "Get me Agent Sonic Boom on the phone. You know, that poster-boy role model of the CSIA. I think he know's someone that know's about this."
Official: "But what does it mean?"
James: "The Confederacy has been down here. Search the area and check if any information was stolen. I want this base up and running!"
The Super Seven were gathered inside the cargo hold of a P-160. They were soaring above Golden City, currently the largest city under Confederate control, being briefed on the situation below.
Agent 1: "The situation here is a bit different. Culldrome Yow is too large to take down directly. A large Confederate military base was set up there shortly after its formation and subsequent take over, not to mention the Snoss Quarter nearby. Instead, we're sending you in to take it down from the inside."
Agent 2: "A pro-Confederate puppet government currently exists. However, a resistance group of partisans called the United Free Culldrome has also formed. Over the past few months, they've engaged in several skirmishes with the government."
Chub: "Well, they would've been busy."
Agent 3: "The UFC have managed to gather a decent amount of military equipment, including several Troop Tanks. The Air Force have also dropped some vehicles and weapons down. Needless to say, they're pretty well equipped."
Agent 1: "Your job is to parachute in to a designated landing zone. Tonight, the UFC plan to make their final assault on the city's capitol and take any Confederate sympathizers out."
Joseph: "Why us? I'm sure they know what they're doing."
Sonic: "First off, this is a direct order from the Supreme Leader. Secondly we're the best special forces group currently available. Everyone else is...on a holiday."
Pilot (Loudspeaker): "Get ready. We're nearing the drop."
Everyone donned their parachutes as the cargo doors whirred open. The gleaming sunset shone into the cargo hold; soon it would be night and the opportune time for their assault. Wind rushed in as the seven stood proudly in preparation.
Agent 1: "Aim for where the blue lights are. That's your drop zone. You won't miss it."
Pilot (Loudspeaker): "We're coming on top of it. In three...two..one...JUMP!"
A red light came on as the Super Seven jumped out in succession. Seconds later they opened their parachutes and saw the plane they jumped out off soar into the distance.
Suddenly, a missile came out of nowhere and hit the plane. In a loud explosion, bits and pieces of metal flew off with some piercing the parachutes.
Sonic (COMM): "Quick! The Confederacy know we're here. Just get to the landing zone!"
Everyone panicked and scrambled off as the smoke cloud continued expanding. Soon, the sound of gunfire filled the air as the Seven rapidly descended. Out of the corner of their eyes, they saw the neon blue lights of lamp posts that marked the drop zone. Everyone landed swiftly managing to miraculously dodge bullet fire. Some were grazed or bruised by their rough landing, but no one had any serious injuries.
Chub: "Come on. Soldiers will be here any moment."
Buhc: "Where do we go? Where is the resistan-"
Everyone stopped and stared at a small squadron of penguins who had their guns drawn. Their commander, who brandished a long grey beard and tattered uniform, spoke up in a rough Antarctic accent.
Commander: "Are you the Super Seven?"
Sonic: "Yes. I'm CSIA Agent S-"
Commander: "Shut up and follow us. We have to get into hiding."
The group followed the soldiers through the narrow alleyways of the city. By now, the sun had set and the dark blue skies began to turn black. Street lights around them flickered on before turning off; electricity generation in the city had been severely limited. Every now and then, the smooth concrete and brick walls turned into rubble resulting from past fights within the city. Delving deep into the depths, eventually they made their way to an alley with a dead end. A lone, rusty door stood at the end which everyone entered.
Commander: "Welcome to the headquarters of our operation."
Functioning lights lit up the inside in an orange hue. They were inside a very large warehouse, with the entirety of the floor space occupied. Mats, boxes, barrels, small chairs and tables scattered the area and many citizens squeezed inside, hiding from the occupation outside. Conditions were horrible with overcrowding rampant and a distinct lack of food. The soldiers and the Seven squeezed past everyone, coming to another door. The doors were guarded by two soldiers who stared blankly ahead, with the group entering in nonetheless.
Dan: "Wow, look at this!"
They arrived at a separate room, completely filled with all sorts of military equipment. Troop Tanks were parked end to end and rifles on racks lined the walls. Plenty of boxes of ammunition and barrels of fuel were placed all around.
Commander: "We haven't been introduced. I'm Commander David and I run this place. Really that's all you need to know."
The Seven all introduced themselves to Commander David, who then explained their situation as he paced around the room.
Commander Dave: "As you may know, we're planning an attack on the capitol...tonight. For the past few months, this small resistance group began to form. Many of the citizens here despised the Confederate take over and joined us. Some were indoctrinated and others were forced into either slave labour or military service. With the battles in Antarctica, most of the troops here have left. Now is the time for us to end all this, for the Good of All."
Buhc: "Wonderful speech. When do we start?"
At those words, gunfire could be heard faintly in the distance.
David: "Lucky for you, now. Get everyone ready. Get weapons and let's go!"
Every able-bodied man and woman of the resistance quickly suited up. Weapons were loaded and the Troop Tanks were filled. Citizens who couldn't fight were tucked away in the safety of the side rooms of the warehouse. A group of Confederate soldiers, who had managed to follow the Seven after their landing, had engaged the guards on the outside. Soon however, the resistance fled their headquarters and traveled in a massive convoy to the capitol.
The Super Seven were tucked in their own Troop Tank, driven by Commander David.
David: "We're not far off from the capitol. If we reach it before reinforcements arrive, we can easily take it."
Careflower: "What was that?"
David: "Tanks! They've got tanks! Someone, get up top and work the big cannon!"
Chub: "On it!"
Chub got off his harness and climbed a small ladder to the upper turret.
Chub: "How hard can this be-"
The Troop Tank rocked heavily to the side as Chub misfired a shell.
Chub: "My bad! Someone get up here and help with this!"
Buhc got up and helped with the reloading. Outside, several more explosions shout out as Confederate tanks began to wipe out the resistance, all clustered together. The Troop Tanks fired back with their much smaller cannons, only managing to place a dent into them.
Joseph: "We're going to get wiped out!"
BOOM KABOOM BOOM BOOM KABOOM
The Troop Tank lurched and tipped over on its side, sliding down the dark city streets and slamming into other tanks in front of them. A shell had hit them directly and now there was a gaping hole in the side, now pointing up in the sky.
David: "Let's get out! Before we get blown to pieces!"
Everyone rushed out to see the chaos in front of them. The Golden City capitol was only a hundred or so metres away, towering above all the other buildings which lined the main road. The flaming, mangled metal husks of both resistance and Confederate tanks littered the streets as smoke billowed up into the night sky. Several Troop Tanks successfully made their way to the foot of the capitol and were quickly unloading their troops and setting up a perimeter. Others were not so lucky.
David: "COME ON! NO TIME TO ADMIRE THE CITY! IF WE DON'T MOVE, WE WON'T BE ALIVE TO SEE IT!"
They all ran off to the capitol, occasionally turning back and firing their rifles uselessly at the tanks. Others were also running while others were left behind as the tanks blew up everything in their path. At the far end of the road, the resistance soldiers had gotten their heavy weapons out and fired bazookas down to the other end.
By now, everyone's ears were ringing after all the explosions and gunfire. Soon, the Seven (now eight) were nearing the steps that climbed up to the main capitol building. Resistance soldiers were laying down cover fire and quickly ushering everyone to head in.
A group of Confederate soldiers appeared out of nowhere and the two sides exchanged fire. Swiftly, the enemy soldiers were gone but Commander David was hit and limped forward before collapsing on the floor.
Soldier 1: "Commander!"
Soldier 2: "Sir, are you alright?!"
Chub: "Talk about a cliche trope..."
David: "Go on! Get to the capitol! I'll be fine here!"
David: "GO! LEAVE! FOR THE GOOD OF ALL!"
The remaining soldiers and the Seven reluctantly ran into the capitol building as David got hold of a rifle and fired aimlessly down the street. Inside the capitol, the scene was chaotic. It was one of the few buildings with functioning electricity, lighting up the building's large entrance atrium. Everyone looked up to see firefights occuring on all levels of the capitol.
Duncan: "What now?"
Soldier: "To the office of the puppet governor! All the way up there!"
The soldier pointed to the very top of the atrium at a set of double wooden doors. Just as he pointed, Confederate soldiers stormed inside.
Joseph: "Well this will be fun. Let's go!"
The massive amount of resistance soldiers fought their way up to the top floor. Many fell to the wrath of the Confederacy, but this did nothing but spur on the soldiers even more. Gathering their will, courage and bravery, the soldiers continued their advance. More and more enemy soldiers poured in from various entrances (and some through the atrium roof) as waves and waves were fought. It was not until the early hours of the morning when the resistance finally made their way to the Governor's office, after many losses on both sides.
Two soldiers kicked the doors down and instantly fell as the soldiers from the outside poured in and defeated the few Confederate guards. In the corner, tucked away was Harai Tomono, the puppet leader of Culldrome Yow and one of Chairman Dux's right hand men.
Harai Tomono: "Please...I did nothing wrong! I-it-it was all his fault! The penguin with the ninja suit and staff!"
Sonic: "Don't worry. There will be a trial for you. Cuff him."
Two soldiers surrounded Harai and proceeded to handcuff him. The resistance cried out in celebration. After much fighting, victory was theirs.
Steven was back at the makeshift headquarters of his military, The Rectangle. Along with several others, they were eagerly watching a live television broadcast from Culldrome Yow on an old tiny TV set. News had arrived of the capture of the Golden City capitol by the United Free Culldrome resistance group. The remaining Confederate soldiers were being stamped out or captured as prisoners of war. Extensive rebuilding had to be done, but Culldrome's most important territory was back under its control.
Steven: "Would you look at that. The largest military operation in Yow since The Great Yowien War."
General Roberts: "Mhm. With that, we only have one thing left to do, retake the Skulldrome Isles."
Steven: "Yes. Our final goal. We need to gather our forces and our allies. With one big swoop, we will attack Shadow City and we will end this! Once and for all! For the Good of All!"
Roberts: "Don't get all winded up about it. I've gotten calls from that Agent Sonic. He wants to deploy that special forces group to Shadow City."
Steven: "Super Seven. Does no one like the name I came up with?"
Roberts: "He says that group of his know something about a top secret Confederate plan."
Steven: "How come I was never told about this?"
Roberts: "They were never debriefed after the little arena incident last month. You just threw them in the fire."
Steven: "I'll talk to them later. I'm sure they'll be wanting some rest after their assignment. Just get the army ready."
The Supreme Leader got up and pat General Roberts on his head, much to his annoyance.
Chapter 10: Shadow of Culldrome
The Super Seven were all gathered together in a large room in the Menap Island base where they had all gathered at during their first assignment. The rooms were filled with an assortment of boxes, weapons and training dummies. They were all suiting up, checking their equipment and doing some last minute practices. No one spoke and the atmosphere was tense as everyone reflected on the danger and priority of their mission. Soldiers guarded the doors to enter the room, staring blankly onto the blue walls on the other side. Sonic recited their plan from the top.
Sonic: "I'll go over everything once more."
Dan: "Jeez, again? Fine."
At that moment, the doors to the room burst open and the soldiers blocked the way with their rifles. Coming in was no-one other than Steven Snowen.
Steven: "Woah, whey! Don't you know pulling your guns on your Supreme Leader alone is an act of treason?"
The soldiers put their guns down and everyone in the room was shocked.
Chub: "Supreme Leader! Its a surprise."
Steven: "Please, spare the formalities. I wanted to ask you all about your upcoming mission, in particular you."
The Supreme Leader pointed to Chub who was, again, taken back.
Chub: "Me?! What? Why?"
Steven: "Yes, someone mentioned something about swords and mentioned that you all knew something about it. Please, enlighten me."
Sonic: "Ah yes, sorry, I forgot to mention. You recall in your previous adventures that you retrieved two legendary swords."
Sonic: "No. However, after Snelten Island was retaken into Culldrom hands, it was discovered that there was another sword. Are you aware of this?"
Chub: "Yeah. What is this, an interrogation?"
Steven: "No, no. But we suspect that the swords are in Confederate hands and that they might be up to no good."
Careflower: "What?! They have all three of the swords?"
Duncan: "What's wrong with that? Don't we have much better technology against that anyway?"
Careflower: "Does anyone remember the legends behind those swords? Its a commonly retold story at Bluetower Castle. It is said that the Twin Heroes, the sons of Mark the Warrior, were given a sword to share. However, in their fighting, the sword was split in two, one for each of them. When they died, the swords were hidden away. Mark, too, had a sword and legend has it that when brought together they would all yield great power."
Joseph: "Well then we might have a problem here..."
Steven: "Wait so you're saying the legends are true?"
Careflower: "Well, they are just legends."
Steven: "So, what is it you were doing? What's your plan?"
Sonic glared at Steven for interrupting him before continuing.
Sonic: "Alright, its simple. Super Seven will parachute from above like what we've done before. By now, Allied troops will also be nearing Shadow City and will assist us. We will be landing a distance away from the Capitol building, our target, since it would be under heavy guard and it would be stupidly dangerous if we dropped in there."
Buhc: "This entire this is stupidly dangerous."
Sonic: "We will storm the Captiol and, like what we did in Golden City, work our way up and take out Chairman Dux and his associates. So, basically we're going in and storming the place."
Dan: "Sounds like my kind of plan."
Steven: "I see. Well I best be going. Thank you for your time and your service for this country. Good luck, for the Good of All."
Steven saluted as everyone did so and replied back in unison. He left the room as everyone continued their final preparations.
All manner of Allied troops had begun their invasion of the Skulldrome Isles. A massive fleet of assorted ships, destroyers, aircraft carriers and landing craft came in from the west. Several portions of the fleet went off to the numerous small islands of the archipelago to stamp out little pockets of resistance. However the bulk of the fleet headed directly into the harbour mouth of Shadow City.
Shadow City was a relatively small, build-up city by Culldrom standards. Several skyscrapers dominated the central city, with hundreds of smaller buildings on either side of them, hugging the coastline. Usually, the city would be bustling with commuters and workers, however in months gone by the streets were completely empty. Military trucks patrolled the streets, enforcing curfews and making sure that no citizen remained unchecked by the Confederacy's watchful eye.
At the main harbour, several artillery cannons pointed up out to the sky, tilted in the direction of the fleet of ships. The few remaining soldiers scurried about as they prepared for an epic invasion. Some thought that this would be the end for their grand country, while others still remained undeterred by the enemy. A lone soldier gazed out onto the watery horizon, shivering in fear at the massive amount of ships coming in. Before long, guns and cannons started firing and the landings began.
The large ships stayed in the deep end of the harbour, providing cover fire onto the coast as landing craft shipped several thousand troops, tanks and other heavy vehicles. The Confederacy had very little to defend themselves with, but still put up a gruelling fight. Many fell on the beaches as the Allies slowly advanced onto the streets and into the city.
A few blocks away, on the other side of the city, Chairman Dux and Gravity were at the Capitol. They, along with all of the other important officials, were hastily packing all of their belongings and documents into boxes as they prepared to evacuate underground into the city's secret tunnels. Chairman Dux looked at a table in front of him, with the two swords of the Twin Heroes and the sword of Mark the Warrior lying on it. Gravity walked up behind him and put his arm over his shoulder.
Gravity: "Everything is coming together nicely."
Dux: "Nicely? What about the Antarctic failures? What about half our army dead? What about Swiss Ninja and Wu Jiao deserting us? What about the invasion occurring ten odd minutes away?"
Gravity: "It's all fine. Project Shadow will be ready for deployment. With our swords added onto it, we will be unstoppable. We will finally succeed in creating a world for Skulldrome. A world for the Porcyals. A world for us."
Dux: "I hope you're right..."
Gravity: "Don't worry. All of the pawns in my grand plan will thank me someday. Now come on. Take those swords with us. We're leaving this forsaken place."
Gravity picked up the purple sword of Mark and the green sword of the Hero of Ideas. He hobbled off with his staff and swords as Chairman Dux stared at the lone, red sword in front of him. After what seemed an eternity of thought (to him), he picked up the sword and inspected it. He was overcome by a feeling of fear and dread that he had not felt for months. Dux shook it off and followed Gravity.
A few minutes later the capitol block had been completely cleared out; only a handful of soldiers remained. Chub 667X, who had recovered from the assault at the lunar base a month ago, was back in action and commanding the troops. Again, he was equipped with a large blaster gun-backpack. The X-Antibody cautiously paced around the facade of the capitol, hearing faint gunshots in the distance.
Chub 667X: "What? English, please?"
Soldier: "What was that?"
Chub 667X turned to face out the capitol gardens and onto the street. There was the sound of gunfire, suspiciously close. He jogged off and ushered for some soldiers to follow. They arrived at the street and looked at the direction where the gunfire was coming from, seeing soldiers aiming upwards. He followed their gaze and looked up to see the Super Seven and other supporting troops parachuting in.
667X: "Look! Up there! THERE! SHOOT!"
The soldiers fired upwards and Chub 667X fired his mounted cannon. A few parachutes were torn, but Super Seven had landed.
"Wow, we're in the heat of the action."
Super Seven took shelter behind an abandoned car and took of their spent parachutes. Sonic, the best in the group at rifles, covered the remaining soldiers parachuting in and swiftly took out their opposition.
Joseph: "Alright, let's move!"
As the group got up and the soldiers regrouped, the road in front of them exploded leaving a crater behind. As the smoke cleared, Chub 667X was facing them.
667X: "Well, you need to try harder to kill me."
Chub: "Oh, shut up!"
Chub took aim and began to shoot his X-Antibody with a pistol. Before the bullets left, he had leapt up and fired the cannon in front of them. The Culldrom troops began to all fire at their enemy and Super Seven was left winded on the ground. Chub 667X bounced all around and continued firing his cannon. Explosions were everywhere as the troops were filled in a smokescreen of debris and dust. With no choice the soldiers fired into the dust cloud.
Careflower: "Woah stop! Conserve your ammunition."
With her command, the streets fell silent and the air was tense. Everyone's gaze was directed to the dust cloud where they aimed as they waited for Chub 667X to come out. The handful of seconds dragged on for what seemed like minutes or hours. But the momentary peace was interrupted.
The X-Antibody had snuck up behind a soldier and, placing him in a neck hold, pushed him to the ground. In shock the soldier fired aimlessly, hitting several others. Before he had hit the ground, Chub 667X had turned over to another nearby soldier and kicked his rifle out of his hands. Spinning around he punched another and kicked another. Everyone was caught off guard and it took several seconds until anyone knew what was happening. Sonic took very careful aim at the X-Antibody before letting out a light tap which hit him. Chub 667X took a step back and fired his cannon aimlessly towards their direction and fled to the capitol.
Buhc: "Quick! Follow him! Go! Go! Go!"
Duncan: "Let's be careful. He could have reinforcements."
Super Seven and the troops ended up in front of the Capitol building and its front gardens. However, there was no sign of the X-Antibody.
Sonic: "Scan the area!"
Soldier: "Sir, I think he went inside."
Everyone cautiously walked through the main pathway that lead to the main entrance of the building. Everyone had separated to either side of the doors, taking cover while some directly faced it with weapons drawn.
Soldier: "On three. One. Two. Three!"
The soldiers in front of the door kicked it down with ease. Everyone piled into the capitol building, looking all around for any enemies. The place was empty, however, and dead silent.
Soldier: "I don't think there's anyone here."
Chub: "He can't be far away. Everyone spread out and look for something! Anything!"
Buhc: "Brother, perhaps this place had been evacuated. Surely the leaders would've been smart enough to go into hiding."
Joseph: "They invaded Antarctica in the winter. Still think they're smart?"
Careflower: "Well, if they're not here then they must be far away by now."
Sonic: "I don't think so. Look."
The tough, burly penguin pointed to a stack of assorted furniture in the corner of the main concourse. All of the other furniture in the room was arranged perfectly except for the stack. It looked like it had been hastily created, with bright scuff marks left on the timber flooring nearby. It seemed odd that there was a pile in the corner; there would have been no reason for it to be there.
Chub: "Get that cleared."
Joseph, the strongest in the group, lead some other soldiers to clear the furniture away. Eventually, the corner of a wooden frame began to show. As couches, tables and bookshelves were moved, the frame began to grow into a door.
Dan: "They're definitely down that way. Come on."
Duncan: "I have a bad feeling about this. Once we're down there, we either win or we don't make it out."
Buhc: "Then just be sure to make it out."
Super Seven and the remainder of the troops stepped through the door and descended several flights of steps deep, deep down into the building.
Back up in the city, Allied troops were closing in. The Confederacy had suffered thousands of casualties as Allied soldiers and tanks made their way closer to the capitol. Victory seemed imminent, although the enemy were putting up one last ounce of energy in their last stand. The Heads of the Army, Navy and Air Force; General Roberts, Admiral James and Marshall Ericson, were all taking part in the battle.
Admiral James was on a Destroyer, CNS-Supreme,the flagship of the Culldrom Navy and the attack fleet. There he was helping to lead the entire battle, commanding from a chair facing a large table with a holographic layout of the city and the harbour on it.
Officer: "Sir, we've got enemy planes firing at the ships. Should we engage?"
Admiral James: "Absolutely. Fire when ready."
At that command, a missile was launched from one of the Destroyer's many missile banks. It soared through the morning air, flying high up above the city, where all the chaos was reduced to something akin to ants dazzling around. The missile locked onto its target and hit an enemy fighter jet, resulting in a massive explosion, just as a formation of Allied fighters flew where the jet was just seconds ago. Marshall Ericson was leading the airborne attack squad and taking down any planes.
James (COMM): "Hey, Eric. How's it up there?"
Marshall Ericson (COMM): "We're doing fine, thank you. Your missile there just took out the last of them I think."
Ericson (COMM): "No, sorry. I just took out the last one. The skies seem clear."
General Roberts (COMM): "Well if you're done dawdling around, get down here to where the fight is. We need air support."
Ericson (COMM): "Roger. We're on our way."
The squadron dived down to the city and zeroed in Robert's location. The General was in a tank and was slowly advancing on a street alongside his Allies. Many tanks were with him as well as Troop Tanks and Artillery Trucks. Others were on the ground, fighting on foot. Despite their heavy barrage, they faced tough opposition opposite them, who also boasted tanks and trucks. Both sides exchanged rapid fire and, due to the extremely close proximity of the opposing sides, it was very loud. It got louder still as the jets neared.
The jets flew down low, just above the buildings on the street. Soaring gracefully, they flew from behind the Allied formation and directly in front of the Confederate resistance. They rained ice-bullets and missiles onto them, clearing most of them out for the Allies to advance.
Ericson (COMM): "The road to the capitol is clear, Roberts. You owe me one."
Roberts (COMM): "Hah, hah. No I don't. You left me without bombers in the Battle of Pirate City. We're even now."
The jets roared past and lifted up in formation. Roberts just gazed around him as the soldiers continued to stamp out any resistance. For a few seconds he was drawn away from the battle as he saw those fighting alongside him. Culldrom soldiers still stood strong after taking a massive beating over the past few months from different wars. They fought hard 'for the good of all'. A few Axle troops were also there; Shoppers never giving up, Munisians fighting with courage and Ed Islandians fighting with strength. Margatians fought bravely, Snowinians fought relentlessly, Terrains fought ferociously and Amatarians fought without fear. Castillians also stood among them, fighting for their ideals and beliefs. General Roberts was proud, not only to be leading such soldiers, but for all of their hard work over the past month of constant battles.
Snapping out of his daydreaming, he commanded his tank on towards the capitol. The end was nigh.
Super Seven and their troops had descended the tiny staircase and ended up on a large metal grate as the landing. Everyone looked around to see the magnificent sight about them. There were in a massively large room with a baffling size; it seemed unrealistic that it was all constructed underneath the capitol. It was more accurately described as a 'cavern', although the walls consisted of metal plates stuck together mindlessly. It was hot and humid, with a tinge of dark red lighting up the entire 'cavern.' The metal grate where they stood on was suspended by wires, which stretched all the way up to the ceiling, disappearing up into the abyss. Under their feet was also another abyss going deep down. Hundreds, if not, thousands of other metal gangways and platforms stretched around the cavern, all being hoisted up. There were multiple levels, linked by crude ladders and rickety stairs. There was also no safety concern whatsoever, as the platforms simply ended with no walls or edges to stop someone from falling into the red expanse below.
Chub: "What the heck is this place?"
Dan: "I don't know, but it give's me a bad feeling. This feels ominous."
Buhc: "Well come on. We need to find them! That platform looks like a start-"
The platform that they all stood on broke off from its steel supports; it could only hold so much weight. It was only a small distance to the platform below it, which it hit. Many managed to stay on, but some lost their balance to fall off into the void. The noise of the platform breaking and hitting echoed throughout the cavern. It was now when they saw the many Confederate penguins walking about on the platforms. The Confederates looked up to see where the sound came from and within moments the alarm was sounded and chaos erupted.
Sonic: "Darn! Okay, okay...everyone keep calm..."
Careflower: "We're out in the open. We're sitting ducks!"
Ice-bullet fire began to rain down on the squadron as soldiers from all angles fired at them. The Culldrom soldiers fired back, but many were hit and some others fell victim to the void beneath.
Duncan: "We need to get out of here!"
Chub: "No! We're so close!"
Buhc: "Well come on then! THIS WAY!"
Buhc lead the way around the maze of platforms. He had no idea where to go and only aimlessly wandered in whatever direction. After plenty of running they soon found themselves looking at a massive purple glowing 'bulb'. The 'bulb' was supported by heavy metal rods and all sorts of tubes and cables came out of it. Next to the bulb was a massive tube, about the thickness of a truck. The tube wound itself away from the bulb and from above one could see that it closely resembled a circular torus shape. Many more cables connected the tube to the bulb.
Careflower: "What in the world?"
Chub: "Its purple, so I presume its Porcyal related."
Sonic: "No...it can't be! Its too large, too unstable! No country on this planet has technology like this!"
Buhc: "Cut your monolouge, we're still being chased!"
???: "No, you're being surrounded."
Super Seven and the remaining troops looked around to see several figures. It was Chub 667X, from earlier, alongside Solir Ryne'n, the master assassin from their Menap Mission long ago. Behind the two were Dr. Blowhole, the mad scientist from the Terratium Mission, and Gravity and Chairman Dux themselves, who were tinkering away at a console. Beside them were the three swords that they had collected over the past few months, the red sword of the Hero of Reality, the green sword of the Hero of Ideas and the purple sword of Mark the Warrior. The three great swords which forged Culldrome, once thought to be nothing but legends now lay in front of them.
Joseph: "Who are you all? What is all this?"
Solir: "I'm sure you all remember who we are. We're the banes of your existence and the brains of this entire operation."
Dr Blowhole: "Ah, yes, quite. You've all lured yourselves into a trap now, eh fellas? You're the most elite group in the entire Culldrome Isles, and for the past few months you've proved to be quite the handful."
Gravity: "Welcome to the Confederacy's secret research facility. You are currently looking at two of our most proud technological advancements. But why should I tell you all? I'm not just going to give away my grand plans like that."
Dux: "Mhm. Welcome back. I hope that you'll have a wonderful time with us. Someone, remove their weapons and tie them up."
With that, Super Seven and their soldiers began to fire at the Confederate soldiers swooping in and the leaders behind them. In retaliation, they all fired back, forming a large cloud of smoke. Soon everything went quiet. The Chairman, Blowhole, Solir and Chub 667X were all protected thanks to Gravity's quick Porcyal usage. The smoke cleared and Super Seven charged towards them. Leaving the console behind, everyone charged together and clashed in an epic fight. All the soldiers on both sides that were with them were dead. Everyone else broke off to duel.
Chub took on his X-Antibody, Buhc went with Solir, Careflower dueled Dr. Blowhole, Sonic and Dan battled Chairman Dux and Duncan and Joseph fought Gravity. It was grueling. Everyone had broken off with whoever they were dueling; everyone fighting in their tiny bubble.
Joseph kicked Gravity hard in the chest. He stumbled backwards, too preoccupied with his dual-wielded swords. At once, Duncan hopped up onto him and hit him directly in the face. Gravity hit the metal grated floor hard. Joseph saw his chance and grabbed Mark's longsword. He got ready and positioned himself to strike, but at that moment, Solir had tossed a throwing knife at his direction. Joseph backed off and the sword flew in the air to be caught directly in Buhc's hands.
Solir pulled out his sword and he engaged in a swordfight with Buhc. However it was futile, as the Porcyal sword easily cut the ordinary steel one like butter. Thinking quickly, Solir pulled out a pistol and shot at Buhc, who deflected the ice-bullets. A stray shot missed Buhc and instead hit Careflower, who had been swinging at Dr. Blowhole with his own staff. Stunned, she was shot at with a large water cannon by the whale, who had a gadget for anything. She stumbled back onto Solir, who lost his focus and was hit by Buhc. Careflower seized a shortsword from Solir as he limped away from the action.
Solir: "I don't get paid enough for this! I'm out!"
Meanwhile, Dan was jumping all over Chairman Dux, who was clumsily handling the sword of the Hero of Reality. He swung aimlessly, trying to hit Dan but to no avail. With a leap, Dan pulled out a snowball from hammerspace and tossed it at his face. The old Chairman tripped backwards onto the floor as he loosened his grip on the sword, which was taken by Chub, who was also on the floor. Quickly, Chub raised the sword to block out an incoming stream of plasma balls which his X-Antibody shot out from his cannon.
With a burst of his strength, Chub lunged upwards and forwards, cutting the cannon in half. With a second strike, he swung at Chub 667X to give a final blow, but he leaped up above him, kicked him in the back and tumbled off the edge of the platform, fleeing the battle.
Chub 667X: "Until next time..."
Chub found himself on the floor again. The sword was grabbed by Dr. Blowhole's mechanical gadget arms and began to swing at Careflower with her tiny sword. Buhc leaped into the action and the two began swinging at each other. The two swords, heavily based on Porcyal magic, began to glow and the entire facility began to shake. A scientist from a gantry above shouted at them.
Scientist: "Chairman! Gravity! Doctor! We have to abort this operation now! It's too dangerous! We're getting lots of interference here!"
Blowhole: "I don't care! Keep it running to full power! We must initiate!"
Blowhole, who was distracted, was struck by Buhc and Careflower. Defeated, Blowhole scurried off and flew away using one of his many gadgets.
Buhc: "H-h-he just flew!"
Sonic: "Someone get him! He can't escape!"
Dan: "We're in a bit of a situation here. We can't go after him! Leave him!"
Sonic: "But he's the top Confederate scientist! It is vital that we ca-"
At that, Gravity lunged at Sonic, hitting him. In a rage, Chub, Buhc, Joseph and Duncan lunged at him, but Gravity backed off quickly and pushed Chairman Dux to them, taking his hit.
Gravity: "You were nothing but a pawn in my plan. A little rung on the ladder which I was climbing. Now, I'm ruling the world and I have no need for you."
With that, Gravity coldly pushed the Chairman off the ledge as everyone else surrounded him in a stand off. Buhc tossed the sword of Mark the Warrior to Chub as he stepped forward, his voice slightly quivering in fear.
Chub: "Well, looks like we have you surrounded. You won't be ruling the world."
Gravity pointed the sword of the Hero of Ideas at him and leaned on his staff.
Gravity: "I'm afraid that you don't see the full extent of my plan. You see you've all been blind from the start. All of you. And by start, you don't know what I mean, either. I'm not talking about when this war started, nor am I talking about my first attack."
The circle closed in on Gravity, but they all stood a fair distance away, fearing his attack. In the background, alarms started to blare as the systems inside the facility began to overload.
Scientist: "SIR! LOOK OUT!"
Two large pipes, coming off the massive purple bulb in front of them popped off and hit Gravity and Chub. The two were thrown down to another platform slightly below, with a control panel in front of it facing the bulb. Gravity rushed to the control panel and looked up to the bulb, then at the torus tube next to it then back to Chub.
Gravity: "Well it must be fated that we are facing each other. The descendant of whom possessed your sword, against his mighty enemy."
Chub: "I don't know what you're talking about!"
Gravity: "You know nothing! Look at those around you! Look at your so called 'leader.' He is as mad as I am!"
Scientist: "SIR! YOU MUST ACTIVATE IT NOW!"
Chub: "Activate?! What is this?!"
Gravity: "What you're looking at is the pride and joy of my Confederacy, which I have built up for over a hundred years since the inception of your beloved 'Culldrome Isles.' I had been pulling the strings behind this country for years, since the dawn of time. This in front of you is the culmination of all of my plans...to not only remove Culldrome from the map but to take over Antarctica, the world, the galaxy, the universe! Everything I've done has lead up to this point and I will not let a bunch of pesky 'agents' in my way to take this away from me!"
With his massive speech, the two ran up to each other and began clashing their swords in one final battle.
The two swung their swords wildly. It was not a graceful swordfight from the early days of history, but rather a mindless act of swinging at each other. The two were blinded by their hate and were relentless. Everyone above could do nothing but stare down and watch the duel in front of their own eyes. The two swords began to glow as the Porcyals in them began to react. Each hit on the sword brought out a bright flash of pure energy, which flew off in every direction. Chub and Gravity put all of their strength and all of their mind to the task, bashing each other with the swords.
It was fierce.
It was deadly.
But all battles must come to an end. The two of them slowly wore each other down. Gravity, armed to the teeth with Porcyals, would not let down that easily. With a surge of strength flowing through him, one that he had not felt in years, perhaps decades, he lashed out at Chub who stumbled back onto the control panel in defeat.
Chub: "WHAT?! NO! IT CAN'T BE!"
Gravity: "I'm sorry. But for once evil triumphs over all."
Gravity, now tired from his dueling, casually stepped up to the control panel and began to push some buttons.
Gravity: "Now I can tell you my plan. This is Project Shadow, the Confederate ultimate superweapon. You see, I find it hard to think that any ordinary weapon would be able to take over the entire world. You must be insane to think that. This here is meant to change that. I took the charter which Bluetower Castle lived by. Peace. That was what they wanted. It's what they stood for. These swords I've got, well they're just stepping stones to help me solidify my rule and stamp out opposition like you.
Instead of simply forcing everyone to like your rule and support your cause, why not just have them 'voluntarily' support me? Mind control, you see. Over the past few years, I've slowly honed my skills, gradually brainwashing the Skulldrome Isles and now my Confederacy through that petty Chairman politican. You don't simply get 100% approval ratings overnight. With this in front of you, everyone will be under my complete control. I will be able to build my own empire with Porcyals, as it was mean to be, for I have created a shadow upon Culldrome."
Chub lay back and let the words sink into him. He reflected on his past, in particular the events that lead him here. The escapades with the Super Seven. The Chairman's battle arena. Dropping a Porcyal bomb on the capital. The hunt for swords and his thirst for adventure. He had seen himself grow in maturity, strength and bravery especially since they left Shiverpool long long ago. Before having any clue about Culldrome and warriors and swords or whatever...
Gravity: "Now if you will excuse me, I have to realise my ultimate plan. For the new world. For the Good of All!"
With his last ounce of strength, Chub pulled himself up to the console and hit a large, red, flashing button. The torus tube imploded as the gigantic purple bulb next to them exploded. Everything went white.
Chapter 11: Showdown of Culldrome
Everything went white as the Porcyal Accelerator torus and the Mindcontrol Superweapon exploded. Within a few seconds, the fireball had engulfed the entire Culldrome Isles, growing in size and swallowing up Antarctica and all of the other islands and continents around it.
Everything was destroyed.
Chub's eyes shot open and he was greeted by a familiar face.
"M-Mark the Warrior?"
"Yes, it is I."
"What is this place?"
With those words, his vision became clearer. They were in the Bluetower Castle orchard, where he had found himself at the beginning of his adventure.
"You're in an alternate universe. One where none of this evil existed."
"Porcyals. I'm surprised you did not know."
Chub looked around. It was just like how it was long ago. It was a lovely sunny morning, with birds chirping and the calm winds rustling the grass and the trees in the forest in the distance. It was quiet and harmonious. There was no one to disturb the tranquillity. No one to disrupt the peace. It was peaceful. The renowned trait of Bluetower Castle.
"Wait...was this all just a dream? Are you kidding me? All of this-"
Mark the Warrior chuckled and then smiled.
"You have much to learn, for you know little. Your family history. The Culldrome Isles. Porcyals. There are still many loose ends that need tieing up."
Mark scratched his long beard and placed his arm over Chub's shoulder.
"That 'Gravity', fellow. I knew him, under a different name. His entire life was dedicated to destroying Culldrome and building up his own world using Porcyals."
"You knew him?"
"He was feisty in his young age. After seeing the power of the Porcyal, he has since lived for countless years. He was the second most influential individual in Culldrom history."
"I wonder who the first one is..."
"Anyway, he had lived out his life, orchestrating everything behind the scenes. There's evidence of his existence scattered all across history. If you know where to look, and you know of the key to open it up, you'll find it."
"You will find out in due course. Your journey is far from over. I could argue that it's just starting, but saying that would-"
"Okay, okay. I get it. But then why am I here?"
"To see for yourself, that you are what you believe in."
"Are you just going to give some motivational speech."
"Hush. All I'm saying is that you must work for the peace in this world. For Culldrome. For the Good of All."
With those parting words, Chub felt himself being sucked through a wormhole. Everything went dark and his eyes closed tightly. His head was in a daze at what information he had just recieved. The puzzle pieces seemed to fit, but it all seemed surreal. Mark's words echoed in his mind.
For the Good of All.
For the Good of All.
For the Good of All.
For the Good of All.
With a thud he was brought back to reality, lying down on the cold hard metal platform of the underground Confederate laboratory. There was something, familiar in both of his hands. The red sword of the Hero of Reality and the purple longsword of Mark the Warrior.
Still dazed, he heard a voice call out.
As if by reflex, he flipped over to his side as Gravity thrust the sword of the Hero of Ideas into the metal platform, right where he was.
Gravity: "Well, well. You've still got some fight left in you."
Gravity swung his sword as Chub got up and blocked his attacks. The two stood on the platform, straining as they struggled to block their swords. It was no use prolonging the battle. Chub gazed down at Gravity's purple Porcyal, locked in a hexagonal glass case that latched onto his belt. The Porcyal shone and glowed, seemingly beckoning him forward.
Gathering all of his rage at what Mark had told him, in one swift motion, Chub ducked and released his deadlock, forcing Gravity to stumble forward. Seizing his chance, Chub thrust both of his swords forward into his Porcyal. The glass cracked as beams of light shot out. Gravity stumbled backwards and dropped his sword and staff. Chub stepped back as Gravity's Porcyal exploded.
Gravity: "Long live the Confederacy! Long live the Porcyal Order! For the Good of All!"
With a triumphant call, Gravity vanished in a cloud of smoke. Chub, now tired and heaving, leant on the control panel (being careful not to touch any buttons) to catch his breath. The rest of the Super Seven quickly rushed down to him where they all hugged and talked about their victory.
Chub: "C'mon, guys. Let's go home."
A couple of hours later the sun was setting. The Allied coalition had successfully reached the site of the Capitol. After the destruction of Gravity's Porcyal, the Confederate soldiers lost their will to fight and simply surrendered. The civilians caught up in the battle had a strange feeling, like they had awoken up from a very long dream. The rosy red skyline of the city was filled with pillars of smoke lifting up into the air as the sound of gunfire and explosions had ended.
The Super Seven had gathered outside in a hastily set up medical tent, just outside the capitol. Now bandaged up and resting, they looked up at the capitol roof, where the Culldrom and Skulldrom flags were raised and the Confederate flag taken down and burnt in a barrel. Their quest had finally ended, with the battles finally over and the Confederacy destroyed. The three legendary swords were laying on the side of a crate, in everybody's eyeshot.
As the Super Seven sat down and recollected their thoughts, there was some bustling outside the tent and a blue penguin in a purple suit entered.
Sonic: "S-S-Supreme Leader!"
Everyone quickly saluted, groaning in pain. Steven put his arm out to stop them.
Steven: "No, no, no, I should be the ones saluting you. You all saved our country and for that I, and the rest of Culldrome, are grateful for your service."
The Supreme Leader stayed for a while, even managing to play a game of cards against them. Soon though, after some more pleasantries, Steven left the tent. It was now night and he was due to address the country in a few minutes. He sighed, with his breath forming a cloud in the cold. Steven walked off, away from the small military camp that had formed near the capitol and stood next to a massive pile of rubble, where a jet and a tank had crashed into a building. What remained was a smouldering mess of concrete, wood and steel.
Steven reached for his tie and pulled out a small purple crystal. He inspected it for a while, gazing in its purple shine. One of his assistants began walking up to Steven and called out for him.
Assistant: "Sir! Your speech is in-"
Steven: "Yes, I know. Get out of here."
Without hesitation the assistant obeyed and left.
Steven: "Too much power...I need to rebuild this country. I need to turn it into an honest country. Peaceful...democratic...none of this messing around anymore..."
With that, Steven tossed the crystal into the rubble and walked off.
Steven: "I've got a country to attend to..."
A few weeks had passed. Peace had arrived in the Culldrome Isles. Almost, anyway. There were still several pockets of Confederate resistance, still not surrendering. The bulk of the Culldrome Allied Forced was disbanded, with some returning home after the fighting and others continuing back into the Frosian War. The wars were now over, and Culldrome was in the process of rebuilding itself.
Steven Snowen remained at the top of his political game. The national election, delayed by the war, was finally held and Steven remained the Supreme Leader, despite plunging his country into turmoil and throwing away his past. In fact, opinion polls showed that he was more favoured now than at any other time before.
As a result of the many operations in the war, the Super Seven were awarded with Culldrome's highest honours and became the secret saviours of the country that faded into myth and legend. Their positions were retained, as Joseph, Careflower, Dan and Duncan were inducted directly into the CSIA Elite Group. Agent Sonic Boom, already a high ranking CSIA agent, was promoted to an even higher ranking.
After the initial chaos had died town, Chub and Careflower had gotten married at Bluetower Castle. A large party was thrown, celebrating both the wedding and the peace in Culldrome. Chub and Buhc were standing away from the fray, outside on a balcony staring off into a sunset.
Buhc: "Don't you think its a little unoriginal to be staring off into the sunset as this story ends?"
Chub: "Way to kill the mood."
Buhc: "Sorry...well congrats, big brother. I'll bet that the future will bring all sorts of things."
Chub: "Thanks. I know it will...I have a feeling..."
Buhc handed his brother a small glass of Cream Soda and offered him a toast.
Buhc: "Well, here's to the future!"
Chub: "Here, here!"
The two clinked their glasses together and took a deep chug. In front of them was the sprawling woods of Mossroam painted orange by the sun. Wispy clouds above them flowed gently as a small breeze picked up. Everything and everyone seemed to be back to peace. Indeed it was a new era for Culldrome, but their adventures were at an end...for now, anyway...