SD Gundam Fan Fiction ❯ Operation Rescue! ( Chapter 5 )

[ A - All Readers ]

~Author’s Note:
 
Guilly-GuiledDragon: Corny corn flakes!!
 
Typhen: That’s redundant.
 
GGD: *smacks him* I can’t believe it’s been a bit over a year since my last update!! Oooooh, goodness!!
 
Typhen: Is anyone still living?
 
GGD: *glares* … Sorry everyone for the LONG wait!! I have been working on this chapter on and off and just finished it! Don’t worry! I have part of the next two chapters written out! So they shouldn’t take NEARLY as long as this did to update! Though I am in college now so I don’t know how my schedule will get towards the middle… :/
 
I hope the length and quality will make up for the long wait. Sorry for no real fights and mostly wondering. I PROMISE a fight will be up next chapter! I tried to throw in some humor to keep things lively!
 
Enjoy!
 
Disclaimer: I do not own the SD Gundam Force, characters, or show (I do own dvds though! HAH!). References of Kharn belong to TDAT-CrystalDragon. Mysterious character(s) and Kendra belong to me.
 
Timeline is AFTER TDAT-CrystalDragon’s fanfic The Tides of Hopes and Fears (which I recommend reading) and BEFORE her next and current sequel The Tides of Ruin and Destruction.

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Zero stood firm before the hole that was crackling before him. The size of it was fluctuating slightly as colors inside of it swirled. The Winged Knight’s gaze hardened; even if it was a trap, he had to go. He had failed with being swift on going as aid to Kendra; something that horribly reminded him of when he was cast out of Lacroa for two years before being able to return to try and set it free.
 
“There was a small rip in the dimension which I was able to lock onto and expand.” Bellwood quickly explained as he typed away at the keyboard, the dark boy rapidly checking the readings that appeared on the screen. “I am a genius for being able to find it and lock on but even for someone as smart as I am, the time it will be open is uncertain. That is to mean, I don’t know when I will be able to get you back, that is if I can. The magical interference for dimensional transportation is astounding. Random portals could open and close at any given time, leaving you stranded.”
 
He looked up at Zero, though he kept typing, punching in commands, “Are you sure you still want to go?”
 
The Winged Knight gave a swift but grave nod. “I have to go. It is my duty to help those in need anywhere they are and right now I am called for on Kendra. On my honor as a knight, I must help those in need.”
 
“Yeah, well, just don’t get stuck there!”
 
“I am flattered by your concern. Thank you.”
 
Bellwood glimpsed up at Zero, not sure if it was sarcasm or the Lacroan gundam was being sincere. After a moment of grave silence, the boy genius spoke again.
 
“Alright, I have a pretty firm lock on the location of the source. Only problem is knowing where you’re ending up. For all I know the portal could be over a deep cavern of ice in which you’d fall into, be crushed or a get frozen into an ice sculpture!”
 
“Thanks for your optimism.”
 
“Just trying to help.” Bellwood grinned, trying to be humorous though he took his job very serious. He kept tapping keys and checking the energy levels of stabilization.
 
“Zero! Wait up!”
 
The Lacroan gundam turned to see Shute running towards him with Captain, Bakunetsumaru, and GunEagle by his side. Notably the brown haired boy was wearing pants opposed to his usual shorts, a rare and strange sight.
 
“Shute, I cannot wait any longer. I must go before it’s too late. I’m sorry but this is something I have to do myself, even without the Force’s help. I understand that you are needed here.”
 
“N-no… W-we’re coming with you.” Shute huffed as he gained his breath. “There is no way we are letting you go alone.”
 
“As a fellow member of the SDG, it is my duty to assist you in your quest.” Captain stated matter of fact though he added sincerely, “But it is also because you’re my friend.”
 
“There is no way you are leaving me out of the action!” GunEagle walked forward, puffing out his chest, “Besides, you need someone with all my skills on this kind of mission.”
 
“Yeah, who knows what trouble you will get in over there? I’ll just have to bail you out as always.” Bakunetsumaru grinned behind his mouthpiece, the Ark gundam giving a pat to Zero.
 
“But what about Entengo?” Zero asked, blinking his teal eyes in surprise.
 
“I do not think taking my beloved and loyal steed to an ice planet would be wise. I hate of thinking of being separated from him, but it would be best. Juli promised she would care for him personally.” The samurai gundam shook his head sadly. He always hated parting with Entengo but Zero had helped him in Ark so it was his turn to aid Zero as a warrior and friend.
 
“Yeah, I’m all prepared.” Shute nodded, holding up a backpack. “This has supplies for icy weather. Also look,” The boy pulled out a red jacket with fur lining the hood, “It’s a snow jacket! Perfect for keeping warm in the freezing cold!”
 
“I’m all done with my packing!” GunEagle pointed to his armor. “Maintenance check as well as the latest arsenal. Plus my beam rifle got some pretty good power. I bet it could carve a nice hole in an ice column! Dude, probably TEN ice columns!”
 
You’re coming too?” Zero asked feeling a bit skeptical though GunEagle was truly an amazing warrior. “What about defending Neotopia?”
 
“Of course! Chief Haro assigned me to this mission! You do need an All Star along with you to save the day! As for Neotopia duty, GunPanzer and the GunChoppers can handle it! Have faith in those guys! I’ve fought along side them many times and they can take care of things themselves.
 
“I mean, I am an important fighting force of the team but I think they can handle my absence. It would be nice for some of the girls to see us off though…. I don’t know when I will be able to see their beautiful faces again.”
 
Shute simply shook his head at GunEagle’s almost endless babbling.
 
“Thank… thank you my friends.” Zero said after a moment, looking at the four standing before him, feeling emotional. Three gundams and a human boy. They did not seem like much compared to an army but to him they meant as much to him as his old comrades of the Lacroa Knights.
 
“Zero.”
 
The Winged Knight turned to see Chief Haro up on the screen near Bellwood. “I sincerely wish you good luck. I apologize for not being able to come in person but I am sure you are now aware the Force will be backing you all they can. I have given orders to GunEagle to aid you on your quest. He in addition to Captain will be our connection to you in Kendra. Hopefully with the two of them there, we can establish come form of communication. I believe Chief Kao Lyn has added some sort of amplifying wave device to both of them.”
 
“I shall relay any information I obtain and record it in my data base for further analysis.” Captain saluted Chief Haro, looking proud in his Hyper Captain Mode. “You can count on me, sir.”
 
“Thank you.” Zero dipped his head in a bow to the head of the SDG.
 
“Uh, sorry to cut in but in about 10 seconds the portal will expand into an accessible size. I will try to keep it from fluctuating but you’ll have to get through before it shifts again.” Bellwood interrupted, punching a button as stats on his screen changed.
 
“Alright!” Shute shouldered his backpack, quickly slipping on the thick snow jacket.
 
“Portal stabilization in 3, 2, 1!” Bellwood flipped a switch and the fizzling portal suddenly froze. It appeared to be struggling against Bellwood’s efforts to shift again, as if wanting to cave in.
 
“Last one in is a piece of scrap metal!” GunEagle ran for the portal, pure glee on his face, a usual expression for whenever he was being sent on a mission. Or for anything he saw pleasure in, for that matter.
 
“Ah, hold on!” Shute started to sprint to gain a running start to jump through. His backpack appeared to be weighing him down slightly as well as his jacket’s bulk.
 
“Ye-haw!” GunEagle hollered, giving a quick salute to Bellwood and the video image of Chief Haro before diving into the portal.
 
“I sure hope it’s soft snow!” Shute commented before leaping through the portal, shutting his eyes. The portal swallowed up the boy’s figure, returning to the swirl of colors.
 
“As long as it is nothing like that ice fortress on Kharn, I’m good!” Bakunetsumaru shouted as he took his turn jumping into the portal, the samurai clutching his twin katana for mental support.
 
“Here we go!” Captain was next into the portal, leaving Zero as the last one in.
Zero looked at the fizzling portal, his determination strong. He would rescue Kendra; Together with his friends. Just as the Wing Knight reached out his hand toward the portal, lights began to flash and the portal made an eerie noise.
 
“Quick! Zero! I am losing control!” Bellwood looked frantic, adjusting some knobs and punching in some commands on the keyboard. The sides of the open space were starting to move inward, as if eating itself small.
 
Not thinking twice, the Lacroan gundam leapt head first into the portal just as the stabilization device broke. As he passed through the hole in the dimension, Zero glanced back to see the portal shut itself, seemingly imploding. He could hear Bellwood’s frantic shouts before the hole to Neotopia completely disappeared.
 
The next thing Zero knew was hitting a rock solid substance and skidding across the floor. The knight quickly stopped to his surprise and sat up, feeling slightly embarrassed for his ungraceful entrance but felt more concern with the issue at hand. They were stuck on Kendra; any way of possible return through the DTD was gone.
 
“Is everyone alright?” The Lacroan gundam asked, looking around for his companions, a touch of fear gripping him at the thought he might have ended up separated from the group.
 
“Yeah, but why am I the only one who skidded face first on the ice?” GunEagle grumbled, coming into view, ice still clinging to his face and head ornament from his apparent ordeal.
 
Zero kicked on his flight boosters so he hovered a few feet above the ground, something which would prevent future slipping. The Winged Knight cast his glaze around, taking in the sight of the icy floor as well as ice pillars. Taking note of some dangerous looking icicles dangling from the roof of wherever they were, he turned toward GunEagle, the rookie wiping off his face. “Where are the others?”
 
“Over here!” Captain called out, stepping into few from behind an ice pillar. “I was looking for Shute. Apparently he slipped upon his entry and slide over into this snow bank.”
 
A bundled version of Shute came out from behind, giving a meek wave. “Hey…” He was now wearing gloves and earmuffs as well as snow boots. “I kinda thought it was best to add some more layers.” The brown haired boy sweat dropped, obviously have gotten the notion after taking the plunge into the snow, “It was really soft though!”
 
“That’s a relief.” GunEagle commented dully, his personality seeming to reflect his surroundings: dreary.
 
“Ah…. Where’s Baku?” Shute asked, blinking in uncertainty as he looked around for some sign of the Blazing Samurai of Ark.
 
“Mrph! Mph mrr myrrp!” Came a muffled sound.
 
Everyone looked around to find the source of the noise. Zero was the one to spot it.
 
“There!”
 
Everyone rushed over to a large snow pile where the only evidence of where the Burning Samurai of Ark was his legs sticking out of the snow upward, indicating he had gone headfirst in. The red gundam kicked his legs wildly, trying to get loose. “Mmrph!”
 
“Gee wiz, Baku. You sure get your head stuck in a lot of things.” Shute sighed, sweat dropping once more due to the humiliating condition of Bakunetsumaru.
 
“Haha, and I thought I got it rough!” GunEagle chortled, his green eyes reflecting his amusement.
 
After a few moments, Captain and Zero, with the help of Shute, managed to pull Bakunetsumaru out of the snow pile.
 
“Gah! I’ve been here for less than 5 minutes and I already want to leave!” Bakunetsumaru grunted, shivering as he glared around, snow still lingering in parts of him armor. His circuits felt numb from the freezing substance. “I, the Blazing Samurai of Ark, should not have to put up with a frozen waste land like this!”
 
“Aw, don’t be a poor sport, dude!” GunEagle gave a hearty pat on the back to the fuming red gundam. He succeeded in knocking some of the snow out of the samurai’s armor. “Hah, besides we’ve only just arrived.”
 
“GunEagle’s right, but the question is where?” Shute looked around the large ice cave. It appeared they had made it to Kendra but where they underground?
 
“My sensors indicate we are on the planet Kendra, judging from the readings Bellwood was able to decipher from the portal’s particles and send to me as well as gravitational pull and-.”
 
“In short, we are on another planet yes?” Zero interrupted, feeling the need to be hasty growing.
 
“Yes.”
 
“But where is everyone? Where are we on this frozen zone?” GunEagle asked, looking around. He stopped for a moment. “Frozen zone… FroZone…. ehehe,” He chuckled at his own wit while continuing to explore.
 
“Unfortunately my ‘guide’ did not give me a grand tour or map when he told me about this place.” Zero replied dryly but examined his surroundings more closely. “I have to rely on instinct here.”
 
“Hey Captain, could you use your scanners to find the geological makeup of where we are? You know, like a 3D model. Perhaps there is a path we could follow.” Shute suggested, rubbing his arms to calm himself as well as keep warm despite his winter attire.
 
The light blue and white military gundam appeared to be spacing out for a moment, his blue eyes staring forward. “Done. My readings indicate we should head left and upward as we are in an ice cavern of some sort. Everything is packed with ice so my senors are unable to penetrate to tell if we are in fact in a building or solid rock cave. However there is light filtering through somewhere as it is not pitch black. My calculations say the probably it there is a light source up ahead.”
 
“Good! We can get warm!” Bakunetsumaru said eagerly, dancing around as he shivered.
 
“Hobey-ho, let’s go!” GunEagle suddenly spurted out, dashing in the direction Captain had indicated. “Last one there has to buy a quart of oil!”
 
Zero along with Bakunetsumaru blinked. “What?”
 
Shute smiled unsurely, semi embarrassed. “Something from a book I was reading and he saw.”
 
Bakunetsumaru shrugged, shaking his head while Zero sighed. Captain waited patiently by the passage he had pointed out to go through, tilting his head as his audio sensors tried to pick up and follow the sound of GunEagle’s footsteps. The remaining gundams as well as the human boy then started after GunEagle.
 
It took only a few minutes to catch up to the enthusiastic Neotopian gundam, having followed the directions Captain had given. The aerial gundam stood at the end of the tunnel that was ‘upward’.
 
“So Captain, which way?” GunEagle asked, waiting for the light blue military gundam’s reply. “Oh, by the way, Bakuman, you owe me a quart of oil,” The rookie ‘grinned’ seeing the red gundam being the last one to arrive.
 
“It’s Bakunetsumaru!” The Ark gundam corrected, fuming that the younger gundam still messed up his name despite all the years of knowing each other as well as numerous correction.
 
“Hah, I’m just playing with you, lighten up.”
 
“Not likely.” Zero murmured, rolling his teal eyes though his sensors prickled. The Winged Knight turned his head, looking towards one of the walls then the other. What was it? The Lacroan gundam looked at Captain and the others but they did not seem to being noticing anything.
 
Captain flipped his scanner down over his eye, looking down the tunnel as well as the walls. “Hmm, it’s hard to get an exact reading with an x-ray scan due to everything made of snow. However, I am picking up some solid formations which might be rock.”
 
“Meaning?” Shute asked, the brown haired boy poking at the snow pact wall, hardly leaving a hole from where he had poked with his gloved finger.
 
“We appear to be in a structure of some kind.”
 
“A building!?” Bakunetsumaru looked hopeful, obviously wanting out of the snow.
“More like ruins which have been covered over by thick sheets of ice.”
 
“When you say ruins, do you mean ruin ruins or a building with parts of it missing?” GunEagle asked sincerely.
 
Everyone stared at the rookie.
 
“You know what? I think I actually know what he means.” Bakunetsumaru replied, the samurai inclining his head to think. “
 
I think I understand your logic, GunEagle,” Captain commented. “It appears to be a wrecked structure with parts missing but still whole enough. I can’t get any more readings. I suppose we will have to continue exploring.”
 
“Zero, is something wrong?” Shute suddenly asked, noticing the knight gundam’s distracted behavior.
 
“Oh, it’s nothing, Shute.” The blue gundam turned toward the others who were now watching him. The Winged Knight shook his head. “I guess the weather is messing with my head. I am not used to this sort of environment.”
 
“We’re all a bit disoriented, Zero.” Bakunetsumaru replied, he placed a hand on his comrade’s shoulder. “Don’t worry, I’m sure we can figure this out. We’ll find and rescue your acquaintance, no matter what.”
 
That was twenty-minutes ago.
 
“Are we in a labyrinth or something?” GunEagle moaned, the usually spirited gundam suddenly looking bored and defeated as the group stopped at yet another fork in the path. “It feels like we’ve been going around in circles.”
 
“Let’s hope it’s not some crazy maze, alone a labyrinth!!” Shute replied, dread filling him at the thought of being lost as well the mention of a labyrinth. “The original labyrinth was practically impossible to get out of as well as the fact that the monster called the Minotaur leaved there.”
 
“Well, besides being stuck in a giant puzzle thing, what was so bad about the monster?” GunEagle asked, probing for some optimistic news. “Was it a monster for being nasty or simply being ugly?”
 
“It was nasty and it ate people.” Shute simply stated, looking pale for a second. “Though it was a mythical legend!” He quickly added, trying to cheer himself up.
 
“You have been reading a good portion of books, haven’t you?” Zero said inquiringly, eyeing Shute.
 
“Heh… Mom kinda drilled it into me to read a lot.”
 
“We’re going to have a Captain Jr. on our hands soon with all that reading he’s doing.” GunEagle joked, giving Shute an affectionate and friendly nudge, regaining some of his cheerful spirit despite the group’s seeming traveling woes. “He’ll be spouting out information like good ol’ Captain in no time!”
 
“And you won’t?” Bakunetsumaru asked dully, already anticipating the answer due to knowing GunEagle too well.
 
“Nah, I’m more of the action guy. Captain is called Captain for a reason. He gives the orders and thinks things out but can seriously kick some can!”
 
“I do not understand. My readings indicate more of the buildings structure the pathways we take but after we go through them, it seems less.” Captain, not listening to the conversation, was trying to go over the information he had obtained and find the bugs.
 
“Captain, do you think these tunnels could be affecting your scans?” Shute asked, becoming serious. “Kinda like how it is going through a tunnel or bridge with a cell phone and losing connection?”
 
“I suppose, Shute but it’s as if we never passed through or we missed a passage. My scanner appears to be working 100%.”
 
“I think it’s the rocks.” Zero suddenly suggested, his teal eyes serious, as he had been thinking. “They might be radiating a sort of magic which is causing a form of illusion. An illusion that impairs our sight as well as sensors.”
 
“Magic can do that?
 
“Magic has all sorts of properties, Shute. We are on another planet as well as dimension so it’s possible. In Lacroa our source is Mana yet here I sense none of it except for my pact. I am unfamiliar with this kind but from what I have witness so far, I do not doubt it.” The Knight crossed his arms as he thought, knowing they needed to find a way out of this maze fast. Time was dwindling as well as Zero’s informant’s life.
 
“You mean we’re stuck here in these tunnels until we break the illusion from some stinkin’ rocks!?” GunEagle looked exasperated.
 
“It might be the rocks or simply one of the enemy’s defenses. It could be both with the enemy using a natural substance for his own purpose.”
 
“Or our poor luck.” Bakunetsumaru murmured, not liking the idea of being hindered by magic. Magic was of a supernatural sort of which was a bit strange to Ark though Ark had its own form of magic, he supposed. However, magic meant supernatural and supernatural included… ghosts. The samurai froze at the thought, his pupils becoming small and sweat breaking out all over. Dread and paralyzing fear surged through him.
 
Were there ghosts here?
 
“Well we can’t stand here all day! We have to try and find a way out.” GunEagle’s green eyes were serious as well as his tone, though it held a feeling of ‘duh, let’s go’ behind it. “Whoever we are trying to rescue might die while we’re wondering around here!”
 
“GunEagle has a point.” Captain nodded, “But I can not figure out how to get past the illusion to find the way out.”
 
The group began to talk among themselves, trying to come up with a solution. GunEagle suggested shooting the walls to find passages but Shute pointed out that might alert the enemy of their presence as well as cause a cave it. Captain commented they could retrace their steps but it would be considerable loss of time. Bakunetsumaru was still frozen from his thoughts though he stuttered, trying to think and say something.
Zero was thinking hard when he felt the odd prickling again. The Knight looked around, trying to see the source. Once more the others did not seem aware of it.
 
“-is….this way…” Came a voice, so low it was barely a whisper.
 
Zero’s head jerked up, his teal eyes quivering. That voice…
 
It echoed in his head faintly, the Lacroan gundam nearly thinking it was his imagination until he felt a weak tug of magic on him. Almost as if a thread had been given to him and all he had to do was follow it. Even if it felt like a hairline, the pull was there; He could sense the magic.
 
“Well we-uh, Zero! Where are you going?” GunEagle asked, breaking out of the conversation, startled to see the blue gundam walking past them with zoned out look on his face. Zero stopped for a moment blinking.
 
“I know where to go.”
 
“What?” GunEagle stared at him blankly while the others looked confused and curious.
 
“I know which way to go.”
 
“Are you sure?” Shute asked, knowing that if anyone had a clue which way to go after Captain’s scientific calculations, it was Zero. The Lacroan gundam knew more about Kendra than any of them. In addition, out of the whole group, he understood the properties of magic and sensed it better.
 
Zero nodded, his teal eyes serious. “Yes.”
 
“Lead the way, Zero.” Captain turned, giving a nod, showing his sport and belief in the Winged Knight.
 
“As long as we get out of this place, I’m good!” GunEagle waved his hand, waiting for Zero’s instructions.
 
The Winged Knight looked up at the ceiling for a moment, listening to the faint whisper. He felt the tug of magic on him, this time as if someone else was trying to move his body. Zero turned his attention back to the others as he turned, waving.
 
“Stick close. If you get separated, you might be swallowed by the illusion and continue being lost.”
 
“Should we hold hands to prevent that then?” Bakunetsumaru asked sarcastically, though his question was ironically serious. Shute snuck a glance at the samurai, the boy personally not disagreeing with the notion though he quickly shoved his gloved hands into his jacket pockets.
 
“If it makes you feel better,” came Zero’s calm tone.
 
“If we even went toward that level, I am more into doing the whole rumba line. I’m not really into that whole heartfelt level of things. If you guys were babes, sure!” GunEagle shrugged though the aerial gundam folded his arms across his chest showing that his hands were occupied with doing something else. “Even if we were kids, I don’t think so.”
 
The two Neotopian gundams, the Ark samurai gundam, and Shute quickly followed after Zero who was quickly, yet gracefully setting a good pace. He turned toward one of the new tunnels they had come upon and headed down it.
 
The small rescue party of SDG members kept close as they snaked through the maze of tunnels and small chambers that lead to more crossroads of tunnels. Zero showed no hesitation in what direction to take, smoothly choosing a direction.
 
As they advanced, the magic pull grew ever so slightly stronger upon the Winged Knight. Soon it was as if he knew where to go as if from a memory buried deep within yet with a foreign feeling as if it were not his own.
 
Finally the group arrived in a chamber larger than any of the others. However, there were no other tunnels to take. They were surrounded by ice walls on all sides except for the way they came in.
 
A dead end.
 
“Oh great, what now? I don’t suppose someone packed a drill or wise I suppose we’ll simply consult the map again.” GunEagle exclaimed, not trying to be rude but the energetic gundam was getting tired of simply walking around and was beginning to get some feelings almost like claustrophobia, not used to being stuck underground and longing for the open sky. He needed a way to exert his excess energy so he resorted to being overly vocal. “Things can’t get any better!”
 
“GunEagle!” Shute hissed at the aerial gundam, knowing the rookie’s manners and nature yet still shocked and embarrassed by the remarks.
 
“Zero, maybe you made a wrong turn.” Bakunetsumaru suggested to his comrade, watching the Winged Knight’s expression as he stared at the wall of ice before the group.
 
“No…. it’s here.” Zero replied, his tone distant yet certain.
 
Captain appeared about to say something when the Lacroan gundam walked over to the ice wall. He stood there for a moment, his teal eyes trained on the obstacle. Slowly, as if something else was controlling Zero, he lifted his hand and pressed it against the wall.
 
Nothing happened for a moment but then there was a small, bright light from Zero’s palm and from where he was touching the wall. A second later, his hand though the wall, followed by the rest of his body. Zero disappeared, leaving no evidence that he had been there in the first place, the spot vacant.
 
GunEagle’s eyes bugged while Shute let out a cry of surprised while Bakunetsumaru sputtered, trying to find his voice.
 
“Z-Zero… He got vaporized!” GunEagle exclaimed, his imagination running away with him due to watching too many science fiction movies with aliens. His emerald green eyes stared at the spot where the Lacroan Knight had stood moments before.
 
“He was spirited away!” Bakunetsumaru choked out, his superstitious beliefs overriding his logic processors.
 
“It appears we have stumbled upon some sort of magic force field. Or strong illusion.” Captain calmly stated, flicking his scanner down over his eye. “I am receiving no readings on it except for some strange energy levels. I can logically conclude this is the way out.”
 
“Of course it is.” Shute laughed nervously, relieved that it was nothing serious, according to Captain. Where was Zero though? Was it safe on the other side? Had something happened?
 
As if hearing the brown haired boy’s concern’s Zero’s head suddenly appeared, sticking out of the illusionary wall. This earned a girly shriek from Bakunetsumaru, who was already just about at his wits end about magic. Ignoring the sound of alarm, the Winged Knight stepped through effortlessly, “Everything is clear on the other side. It seems the magic behind this illusion has no malice so we can pass through it safely. If it is dangerous magic, I have neutralized it temporality. I suggest we move quickly before it stabilizes itself and the enemy notices us.”
 
“If they haven’t already.” GunEagle murmured looking relieved at the sight of Zero yet shooting an amused look at Bakunetsumaru, indicating he was remarking about the samurai gundam’s scream.
 
Bakunetsumaru cleared his voice processor, looking very much embarrassed, his face turning a shade of red almost equal in color to his armor. “T-there’s nothing wrong with being cautious and on guard,” He argued, trying to cover up his shameful moment as he regained his warrior’s composure.
 
“Well, by all means then, ladies first.” GunEagle grinned, stepping behind Bakunetsumaru and giving him a strong yet friendly shove forward.
 
The Ark gundam was not prepared for the sudden momentum. He stumbled forward, trying to catch himself but ended up disappearing though the illusion. However, it was not without a startled yelp from the samurai as he tumbled through, vanishing from view.
 
“I take it back. Things are getting better.” GunEagle laughed, his eyes showing his happiness and humor.
 
Zero simply shook his head and waited, “I will go last since there is a risk I go though again, I might cause a spike in the magic. I’d rather be last and seal the exit then trap some of you on one side.”
 
Captain stepped up. “I suppose I will go next. That way if we get separated at least GunEagle and I are on different sides of this magic barrier so we can hopefully maintain communications with one another.”
 
“That’s Captain, so thoughtful and logical!” GunEagle remarked in sincere admiration as the senior military gundam’s body was seemingly absorbed by the ice. A few moments passed and GunEagle looked at Shute.
 
“Hey, Shute, buddy. Why don’t you go next?”
 
“What? Eh… uh.”
 
“It’s perfectly safe Shute. I am monitoring the flow of magic right now.” Zero responded, knowing the human’s fears about being stuck on one side. The knight gundam looked distracted for a moment, flicking his teal eyes toward Shute. “You should be fine. Think of it like a different form of the Zakorello gate.” He did not compare it to the Dimensional Transport Device as they all knew how faulty the contraption could be at times.
 
Shute nodded, feeling a bit encouraged but still went cautiously to the hidden gateway. Not sure how the magic would react to an organic substance the human boy carefully stuck his hand out, pointing his index finger at the fake ice wall. Inching closer and cringing to prepare himself, he stuck his finger into the ice.
 
A warm, surprisingly pleasant feeling raced throughout Shute’s body as his finger disappeared. He could still feel his finger and wiggled it before pulling it back to the side he was on. It was still attached and felt normal. Shute looked hard at the invisible doorway plucking up his courage before plunging his whole body though, shutting his eyes.
 
The warm, tingly feeling rippled through his body for a few seconds but then it was gone. Shute slowly opened his eyes to see that he was now in a cavern unlike the previous ones. In fact, it seemed more like a room. A room made out of ice. It was as if he was in the Icestorm Palace on Kharn again.
 
Captain was talking to Bakunetsumaru who did not looked humored at the fact he was the first one on the other side, cut off from the others while on a strange planet. He had some pieces of ice clinging to his shoulder armor, suggesting that once more the samurai gundam had landed headfirst. His brown eyes lit up when he saw Shute, glad to see the boy was safe.
 
“Whoa, I’ve got to get me one of those!” Came GunEagle’s voice as the aerial gundam stepped out of the now rippling illusionary wall. On this side the entrance to the ice tunnels looked like a large mirror, only it rippled like water around the emerging person until they fully emerged, leaving its surface smooth and untouched. Zero was a step behind GunEagle, the knight looking somber.
 
“Zero, where are we?” Bakunetsumaru asked, eyeing the ice room as he brushed his hand on his shoulder, knocking off the ice.
 
“I assume we must be in a palace on the planet. I’m not certain, as I have no idea about the governing system of this planet, if they have palaces for royalty or not. It is possible we have arrived in the enemy’s strong hold.”
 
“What!?” Bakunetsumaru gapped. “So we just got tossed into the enemy’s hands!?”
Shute made a puzzled face. The Ark gundam probably meant fallen into the enemy’s lap or in the enemy’s grasp. Either way, Zero’s words were not good.
 
“So…. we just got to fly under the radar until we find whoever was calling for help, right? Then we can come out with our guns blazing!” GunEagle looked excited at his interpretation.
 
“We have to be careful.” Captain stated in a low voice, his blue eyes alert, “The percentage rate of reverberation in this room is 79.63% higher than the ice maze. I suggest we move on quickly before our presence is discovered.”
 
Everyone nodded their head in agreement.
 
“But which way to we go?” Shute asked in a strained whisper, glancing at Zero for possible instruction through his magic link.
 
The Winged Knight jerked his head forward. “I am sensing something from that direction.”
 
The small rescue party as quietly as they could, followed Zero in the direction he had indicated. They made their way down a narrow hallway, forced to walk one by one. Shute shivered, gripping his arms as he looked around the corridor. Everything was so… bleak.
 
It was as if there was no life in the place at all. It gave him the willies.
 
The hallway lead off to others as well as some rooms but Zero kept the pace moving forward, ignoring the side passageways. When the hallway ended, it lead to another large ice room, only this one was filled with icy pillars and some that appeared to be snow and ice boulders, presumably being chunks of the ceiling which fell. This room however seemed more inhabited by the others, some how being lighter.
 
Zero floated into the room, casually looking about.
 
“Whoever built this place did not have much of an imagination.” Bakunetsumaru remarked, frowning at the repeated framework and room design. Somewhere down the hall, a gust of wind found itself within the palace walls and howled, letting out a low moaning sound. The Ark gundam jumped, becoming ridged as the wind blew, sounding like a ghost’s moan. “Uh… uh… I sure hope whoever lived here has long gone.” He said nervously, hinting that if there were any free roaming spirits about, they would disappear.
 
Shute and Captain stuck somewhat close together, the military gundam taking readings of everything he could while the human boy was nervous, wanting company.
 
GunEagle was amusing himself by making faces at his reflection in the shining, slick ice shaped pillars. He waved his hands around, letting out a low chuckle. “No need for mirrors here!” The aerial gundam then ‘flexed’ his muscles, or at least what would be his muscles if he were made out of flesh. “I look good in anything’s reflection.” The rookie ‘grinned’ behind his mouthpiece.
 
inishing up with his self-amusement, the young Neotopian gundam started to walk away, though his gaze was still on the reflecting ice. He began to turn though it took a moment for his emerald green eyes to move forward toward where he was heading. As soon as GunEagle was looking forward and actually paid attention to what he was looking out, he let out a yelp.
 
Shute spun around to see what had caused the aerial combat gundam to utter such a noise. Captain stopped his studying of the ice formations hanging from the ceiling. Zero turned sharply as well, his attention taken away from his magic honing feeling.
GunEagle was pointing at a wall of ice, “I see dead people! Er, things!”
 
“What!?” Bakunetsumaru exclaimed a shocked and terrified expression appearing across his face. The red gundam was gripping his twin katana swords though he was tense and slightly trembling from his phobia of ghosts.
 
The wall of ice GunEagle was pointing to had frozen within it strange looking aquatic creatures as well as fish. Some looked like dolphin creatures, others of dragon kind but those were simply alien.
 
“A-are they dead?” Shute asked, his green eyes huge and round at these new discoveries.
 
Captain stepped closer, scanning the frozen creatures. The light blue military gundam examined them closely. “No. It appears they have gone into a form of suspended animation for their bodies to survive the cold. They all still have a heart beat, though its faint. It is possible for them to stay alive for a while longer. However, since it possible they have never experienced this environment before, they may enter a delayed shock state and die if Kendra does not return to its former state within enough time.”
 
The Neotopian gundam looked more of the creatures over and even began to investigate the ice around them. “By the molecule make up and setting of the ice, it does not appear like an immediate freeze, a super freeze, which would have instantly killed them. The formation of the ice was quicker than by natural standards, but not enough to cause shock to the body as well as freeze their organs.”
 
“Can’t we help them?” Shute appeared pained as he looked at the strange, yet interesting creatures. Thought of them dying and being unable to help them was horrible.
 
“Sorry to burst your bubble little guy, but I don’t think we have a large enough fish bowl for all of them.” GunEagle replied, edging closer to the seeming wall gallery of frozen aquatic creatures. “Besides, being fish type creatures, they can endure it a bit more right? I mean there was a documentary on TV which had salmon being frozen in a lake for the whole winter, in a kind of hibernation, though I flipped the channel and didn’t see the rest of it.” The rookie gundam murmured the last part of the sentence, though he gave Shute a reassuring pat on the head. “We just have to hurry up and fix this planet!”
 
“Oh… oh, ho… haha.” Bakunetsumaru laughed nervously, relieved that the cause for alarm was frozen fish. It was still creepy but nothing the Blazing Samurai could handle. As Bakunetsumaru turned away, laughing to himself, he came face to face with a strange block of ice. The Blazing Samurai of Ark frozen for a moment only to let out a shriek, his pupils growing small as he began to tremble. “G-g-ghosts!!”
 
Captain walked over bravely to where Bakunetsumaru was standing, knowing logically there was no such things as ghosts except for magical spirits who some how seemed to exist despite scientific reason that they shouldn’t. His blue eyes stared at the block that was causing the Blazing Samurai alarm. The surface was fogged over along with frosted with snow. Still, something was inside.
 
Captain raised his hand and wiped his hand across the surface, scraping away the obscuring substance. The military gundam stared for a moment before blinking his eyes. “Why, it’s Grappler Gouf!”
 
Sure enough, frozen inside was the light blue former Dark Axis lord robot. He appeared to be shocked, his lone pink eye staring forward. His clawed hand however was raised, as if he were cowering from an incoming blow. The blue robot showed no sign of being conscious and seeing the group before him.
 
“What madness is this?” Bakunetsumaru asked in a quaking voice, recalling the strange earlier battle they had fought against the Dark Axis trio. They had acted strange, not appearing their usual selves. Were they not the real things? If they were was this Grappler before him some sick joke of a statue? Or was this the real Grappler? If that was the case, how did he end up on Kendra?
 
While Captain and Bakunetsumaru stared at the frozen Grappler, Shute walked closer to one of the large boulder of ice near him. He stood for a moment, looking curiously at it. He then swept his hand across the surface, like Captain, giving better clarity. The human boy’s green eyes grew wide as he became stunned. “Captain!! It’s Zapper Zaku!” Shute stared, pointing to the crimson red robot frozen within.
 
“Where’s the large one?” GunEagle asked, referring to Destroyer Dom.
 
Zero floated over to a couple of the boulders, looking them over. He stopped at one of the particularly larger ones. “Here!” He brushed the curtain of snow off, revealing the largest of the ex-Dark Axis lord trio. The blank expression on the large purple and black robot’s red face was not new. “The zako soldiers are here as well!”
 
“We have to help them!” Shute exclaimed, looking at the frozen figure of Zapper Zaku as well as the others. He was unable to free the aquatic creatures from their icy prison but this was going to be different. “Captain, we have to get them out of those!”
 
“Uh, didn’t they try to kill you guys earlier?” GunEagle asked, scratching his chin, looking at the three other gundams and the human boy. “Whose to say they aren’t going to try again? For all we know, they could have gone back to their old Dark Axis ways. Not that I wouldn’t mind kicking their butts like old times…”
 
“No way!” Shute argued, though some doubt was within. “Even if we fought earlier, something was not right; they weren’t themselves, I know it! I mean, they were our allies before! Back when we fought General Zeong and on Kharn against Karkan and the clones too!” The human boy pointed to the imprisoned robots. “We can’t leave them like this!”
 
“Sure, they will be fine for a while like the fishies.” GunEagle shrugged, not sure if taking on extra baggage would be good here. If Zapper, Grappler and Dom had gone back to their old ways, they would put up resistance to the Force, causing attention to be drawn to where they were. If they were beaten they would have to be taken along as prisoners, causing the rescue party to slow down, as they could not leave them alone on a strange planet.
 
“Captain!” Shute’s tone with urgent, pleading with the light blue military gundam.
 
“Shute’s right. Even if they attacked us earlier, we can’t leave them. Perhaps they can give us an explanation for their behavior.” Captain said after a moment, looking set on his discussion. “I do not believe they can last in this condition for much longer. Calculating the time of frozen encasement if it was right after our battle….”
 
“Okay, but the question now is how do we get them out? I don’t suppose anyone has a light,” GunEagle asked, adding a quick joke though his question was true and struck a valid point. “I don’t suppose shooting the ice to pieces would work?”
 
“Violent force would not be a good idea. It is possible the ice has frozen their molecules, causing them to be in a fragile like state. Sudden pressure could cause them to shatter.”
 
“Baku, you can use your Tenkyoken, right?” Shute looked at the samurai gundam with his worried green eyes.
 
“Ah, I’m not sure if my attack would be the best solution.” Bakunetsumaru responded, still recovering from his scare. “I suppose I could call upon the Sacred Arts if I really had too.”
 
“Please tell me you brought an ice chisel.” Shute directed the statement at Captain as well as GunEagle.
 
“Hm, I do believe Chief Kao Lyn did install such kind of equipment but I’m not sure if that would be good to use for their uncertain fragile state.” Captain remarked, still studying the ex-DA lord’s frozen forms.
 
“We have to do something!” Shute looked even more distressed, his green eyes bigger.
 
Bakunetsumaru was silent for a moment before letting out a sigh though his brown eyes held a solid resolve. “I’ll do it, Shute. At least I will try to see if it works. The sacred flames should be able to burn though anything, but I can not be sure of those three’s state after.” The red gundam felt a flicker of courage that drew power as he placed his hands on his sheathed twin katanas. He could do this. He was a trained warrior, a honorable samurai and war hero. The one who was called the Blazing Samurai; the chosen owner of the Baku Shin armor.
 
He was Bakunetsumaru.
 
“Everyone, gain some distance.” The Ark gundam waved his hand back, hands on his sword handles, taking up a position so all the frozen forms where before him. “I’m not sure how things will go in this limited size area as well as the fact things are made of snow and ice.”
 
The others quickly followed his instructions, Shute looking on with concern and urgency written all over his face standing next to Captain. Zero and GunEagle took refuge against the opposite wall, knowing how far and strong the flames of Bakunetsumaru’s attack could get.
 
“I the Blazing Samurai of Ark call upon the sacred flames which burn within me. Which set my GunSoul afire…,” Bakunetsumaru began, drawing his beloved katanas, feeling the fire within him growing, power starting to spread throughout his gundamnium body. His GunSoul began humming gently as the red gundam lifted his swords, planting his feet in a traditional battle stance, moving his arms in a fluid grace as his twin blades drew circles. “Sacred Arts…. Bakunetsu… Tenkyoken!”
 
Flames erupted forming a gigantic fiery ‘x’ as Bakunetsumaru slashed through the air, performing his signature move. The blazing attack hissed through the air as the ice within the room melted from the intense heat. The burning x spun, slamming into the ice prisons.
 
The air hissed as the ice began to melt, the x still blazing as it drove itself into the frozen forms of the ex-Dark Axis crew. The intense light caused Shute to throw up his hand to protect his eyes as the light glared off the snow, blinding him.
 
After a few moments, the hissing stopped and the heat ceased. The human boy dropped his arm, an excited look on his face, anxious to see the now free robots. However he was bitterly disappointed, along with the gundams.
 
Though some thickness of the ice had melted, the former Dark Axis robots were still frozen.
 
“It’s… not enough.” Shute said after a moment becoming down hearted looking at the still ice-encased forms. Where they doomed to be stuck like this until Kendra was free? By then they might not be alive anymore.
 
“Don’t give up so soon, Shute.” Bakunetsumaru encouraged the young human though he felt a flicker of disappointment himself, “Let me try one more time. It seems in this environment even the sacred flames need to be stoked.”
 
“This place is not caused by natural occurrence. It’s mixed with magic, that’s why your flames are not working as they usually do.” Zero quietly imputed, his teal eyes glancing around.
 
“If only I had the Baku Shin Armor… then my flames could burn bright and hotter than any other’s!”
 
“Hold that thought!” GunEagle suddenly exclaimed, his emerald eyes lighting up. “I just remembered, Chief Kao Lyn gave me a little do-hickey! It has limited use unfortunately as it is a prototype.” The aerial gundam reached around him, pulling something from beneath his wings, wear he apparently stored items. He held his hand out, a tube in his hand, looking similar to his beam sword only bigger and having a trigger.
 
“It’s an extraction laser. I think… a laser used to extract things… is there such a thing? Well, something heat based.” GunEagle shrugged, not sweating details, “Anyways, it wouldn’t hurt to use it along with your attack, right?”
 
“At this point I don’t think I have much choice.” Bakunetsumaru replied, feeling slightly put off but knew now was not the time for pride. Lives were at stake. “But, does that little thing really have enough power-?”
 
“Hah! Of course! This baby is mine and anything I own packs a punch! Chief Kao Lyn says it’s a combination of laser technology and firepower. Literal fire power, haha.”
 
“Why didn’t you say something before?” Zero asked in a dull tone, not sure if he wanted to know, though he was not paying much attention as he tried to keep track of the strange magical presence he faintly felt.
 
“My memory banks short circuited in that department.” GunEagle offered with ease, obviously unashamed.
 
“Like how they used to with my name.” Bakunetsumaru thought with some annoyance, however that was of the past even though GunEagle would once in a while still mess up his name as a joke.
 
“So, shall we dance?” GunEagle quipped ‘smiling’ behind his mouthpiece. He raised the trigger-equipped tube. With his other hand he grabbed the barrel and pulled, extending it into a longer nozzle with a click. Raising the new weapon into the air, he began, “I have the power-”
 
“Don’t start.” Bakunetsumaru cut off the start of the catchphrase, rolling his brown eyes in exasperation but serious. Gripping his katanas the samurai began his attack once more. “Sacred arts,” He gave a nod to cue GunEagle, “Bakunetsu… Tenkyoken!”
 
“Burn, baby!!” GunEagle said with glee, aiming the gun and squeezing the trigger, unleashed a surprisingly large stream of fire. It blasted onto the ice blocks, washing over them like fiery waves. Meanwhile Bakunetsumaru’s sacred flames from his attack joined the manufactured based flames.
 
As the aerial gundam held the trigger to unleash the flamethrower, he moved his thumb, clicking a button on the side. “Second serving!” Above and below the barrel of the gun, a light turned on. Within moments there was a humming noise and not a second later twin beams shot out, indicating the lasers were now functioning. Though in good humor, GunEagle was serious with his work.
 
As he and Bakunetsumaru kept up the flames, the aerial gundam directed the laser carefully around the blocks of ice, shaving off the excess parts that encased the ex-Dark Axis lords and their zako followers. Soon the sizes were reduced more to the outlines of the trapped robots, no more excess bulk of ice around them save a few inches.
 
After a few minutes, the prototype weapon let out a whining sound until suddenly it turned off. GunEagle’s emerald eyes widened for a moment, looking startled. “Ah, it broke.” The aerial gundam shook the gun, tapping it with his other hand. “I guess it really is a prototype.”
 
Bakunetsumaru turned his brown eyed gaze at the rookie for a moment, an alien fatigue starting to creep upon himself. As he supported his attack, strength was beginning to leave him, much faster than it usually would during battle. There was definitely something up with this place.
 
“You can do it, Baku!” Shute cheered, worry poking at him. The Ark gundam was beginning to look worn down. “You’re almost there!”
 
“I…. can’t…. keep… it… going.” Bakunetsumaru strained, panting as he fought to keep the fire burning hot and not die. His GunSoul was feeling faint as well. After a few more seconds, the samurai was forced to cease the attack.
 
“I’m sorry, Shute. I couldn’t keep… it up. There’s… something… which is causing me to lose power faster.” He painted, feeling embarrassed and disappointed at the weakness.
 
“No! It’s okay! Look!” Captain exclaimed, pointing to where the flames were dying down and the steam around the targeted area was beginning to clear. Everyone watched in anticipation as the last of the steam dissipated.
 
There before the SDG gang stood the dripping wet forms of Zapper Zaku, Grappler Gouf and the zako soldiers. Around them were clumps of their once individual icy prisons. They all blinked in surprise, Grappler looked shocked for once, lowering his clawed arm.
 
“They’re alright!” Shute shouted with glee, relief washing over him like a warm summertime wave. He would have jumped up and down in his excitement but his current attired weighed him down more than usual. Jumping could case him to lose his balance and flop over.
 
Bakunetsumaru let out a breath of relief though he tried to regain some of his energy. He was going to need it to keep up with this mixed band of adventurers.
 
“Glad you see you fine robots are in working condition.” GunEagle slyly stated, though pride was in his voice at the sight of his successful handiwork of freeing them. “I don’t suppose you’ll refuse showering us with gratitude and apolog-”
 
“It’s the gundams!!” Zapper Zaku exclaimed in shock, cutting off GunEagle, the burgundy robot pointing at their rescuers. He blinked his single pink eye as if not believing what he was seeing. However a moment later he shouted, “Get them!”
 
“I’ve been waiting for this moment!” Grappler glowered, his lone pink eye glow as he raised his clawed hand, eyeing Zero. The blue robot flexed the razor blade like fingers that appeared to have no problem moving despite having been frozen only a minute before.
 
“Dah ha! Squash them like a bug!” Destroyer Dom laughed in his deep voice, towering over the others inside the room. He raised a fist, opening and closing it, “No weapons.” He tilted his head down, his eyes glowing as he stared at the stunned gundams, “Me want my weapons to make puny gundams go boom.”
 
“W-wait! What’s going on!? We freed you guys!” Shute stuttered, confused at the robot’s hostility. Had they really reverted back to their old ways of greed, destruction and power?
 
“Get back, Shute.” Captain moved in front of the human boy protectively, his hand outstretched. “It looks like we’ll have to fight them. Though this room isn’t suited for battle.”
 
“I guess make do with what we have!” GunEagle imputed, still holding the broke laser flamethrower gun. He looked ready to chuck it though his other hand was reaching for his beam rifle, which was mounted snugly on his back, a new feature that allowed him to carry it with ease when not in use.
 
Zero looked alarmed but did not make a move to summon his Buster Sword for battled. Something was not right. The magic link tugged at him ever to slightly, faltering for a moment. They did not have time for this foolhardiness.
 
The Dark Axis trio let out a fierce yell as they lunged at their opponents. Bakunetsumaru moved his katana blades to parry the attack of Destroyer Dom, the large robot charging forward toward him. GunEagle jumped in the way, still holding the broken gun.
 
“Hey! Goliath! See how you like this!” With a shift movement he chucked the weapon at the largest of the trio. Not expecting such an attack, Dom did not try to dodge. Instead GunEagle’s aim proved well formed as it hit him square in the head, causing him to falter for a moment, stunned.
 
“Bull’s eye!” GunEagle exclaimed in glee, snapping his fingers.
 
The large robot stood there blinking. “Dah… what going on?”
 
Zapper who was lunging for Captain suddenly stopped. He stood in place for a moment, just a few feet away from the military gundam, blinking. “Ugh, my head.” He raised a hand to his head and shook it, as if trying to rid himself of a bad headache.
 
Even the zakos, who were known for becoming cowardly, had chosen to try to hold Bakunetsumaru down. They were hanging off of him, having gotten around GunEagle, though some were attempting to attach themselves to the aerial gundam as well. The younger gundam easily dodged their attempts even without having to kick on his flight boosters.
 
The red musha gundam was trying to shake them off but they clung onto him like leeches. Some even attached themselves onto his legs like a little child. However they suddenly stopped making noise. All of them simultaneously blinked rapidly, “Zako?”
 
“Hold on… wait a moment!” Grappler suddenly announced, his clawed hand still posed to skew Zero. The blue robot stared at the violet blue gundam, as if shocked at the sight of the Lacroan gundam, slowly lowering his arm though still ready to slash at Zero. “Where in the cursed universe are we!?”
 
“I-I-I’m f-f-freez-z-zing, z-zako!” One of the zako soldiers sputtered as it shook from the cold, still wet from the melted ice.
 
“M-m-me t-t-oo, zako-o!” Cried another. Along with exclamations from the other little green robots, they ceased their hold on Bakunetsumaru, who was speechless, blinking his brown eyes, not sure how to react.
 
“A-A-Ark wasn’t t-t-this c-c-cold, zako!”
 
“Y-y-yeah, zako!”
 
For the next few moments the whole ex-Dark Axis crew appeared disoriented and confused. Zapper whacked his head a couple of times with his hand while Dom stared up at the ceiling, sure to have his mouth agape if he had one. The zako soldiers were all huddled together, shivering as they tried to warm up their circuitry. Grappler was as confused as the others but did not want to show it. Instead, his usually annoyed tone replaced his fear and confusion, causing him to be unpleasant.
 
“Now why by the Big Zam are we doing in a giant meat locker?! My circuits are freezing up and I’m soaked!” He snarled, shaking his clawed hand, causing the water to fling off. With in seconds of touching the ground, it reverted back to ice. Grappler was silent for a moment, watching the water transform.
 
“You mean you don’t remember?” Captain asked, truly curious but still standing protectively in front of Shute.
 
“Remember what!?” The blue robot snapped, his pink gaze shifting, glaring at the military gundam accusingly.
 
“Clearly we do not, Captain Obvious!” Zapper snapped still clutching his head, his pink eye glaring at Captain as well however the burgundy robot let out a low, short moan. “I am having major memory board freeze! My processing is lagging.”
 
“It’s always been lagging, you tin can.” Grappler snapped, brushing off excess ice that still found itself on his metal body. “That’s why you’re so much of a moron.”
 
“What did you say!?” Zapper growled, whipping to face his blue comrade. “As if you were ever capable of leading an invasion. Or an army for that matter! That’s why Genkimaru left me in charge!”
 
You!? You couldn’t find your way out of a cardboard box!! Even D. Dom could! Besides, the little squirt gave the same job to all of us! We’re supposed to be helping with reconstruction!” Grappler spat but crossed his arms, showing he had not intention of brawling it out with Zapper.
 
GunEagle was a bit more relaxed, his hand away from his beam rifle but the rookie gundam kept his emerald eyes on Destroyer Dom, the large robot now checking out the frozen aquatic creatures in the wall. “Toto, you’re not in Ark any more.” The younger gundam ‘grinned,’ seeing the large robot’s astonishment.
 
That is if he could really tell with that blank face which had no mouth.
 
“Dah, where are we?” The purple and black robot asked, turning his red head to take in more of the frozen shapes.
 
“The planet of Kendra.” Zero simply replied, not seeing the need to stall about information, the magic link having disappeared for a brief moment. “An aquatic planet. The state you currently see is the resort of a magic curse of sorts.”
 
“So you guys do remember about Ark and Genkimaru?” Shute shyly asked, taking a cautious step out from behind Captain’s protective form, looking at the fuming form of Zapper Zaku and the sullen Grappler Gouf, the latter answering:
 
“Of course we do, you lame human. Now tell us what’s going on around here and why we are stuck on some weird planet also starting with a ‘k’ like that last freak zone and why we’re not back in Ark like we want to be!”
 
“But… you don’t remember what happened before?” Captain slowly asked, switching on his scanners to detect a change in voice frequency, to indicate possible lying.
 
“Before what!? Before suddenly finding ourselves here, face to face with your bunch of goodie goodies and freezing our processors off?!” Zapper said unpleasantly, obviously feeling irritable.
 
“Well… actually…,” Shute began, proceeding to quickly summarize the past events, with inputs of details from Captain. After a handful of minutes, the human boy finished, watching the ex-Dark Axis lords with mixed interest.
 
A few moments of silence went by.
 
“So we tried to invade Neotopia, giving the impression it’s from the Dark Axis like in the old days, only to get our butts kicked and our memories wiped of the event, be found as frozen lawn decorations from some movie and then set free by some of the most annoying beings in the universe?” Grappler looked unimpressed, his mood darkening further. “Wonderful.”
 
“So you have no recollection of what happened before or after our battle?” Captain questioned, picking up no traces of non-truth.
 
“All I can remember is minding my own business in Ark and suddenly I am here in this tacky icy room with you gundams.” Zapper then added, muttering, “and human.”
 
“Besides our seemingly alien abduction, how do we not know you simply botnap us and try to take us to Robo House, making up this false scenario of battle, humiliating us while at it,” Grappler Gouf prodded, doubt lacing his tone.
 
Captain did not look taken back for one moment. Instead, the Neotopian gundam pointed at Zapper Zaku. “When I was fighting Zapper, one of my bullets nicked his armor. The shoulder armor on his right arm, see for yourself.” The military gundam then dropped his hand. “That has confirmed that we were indeed fighting you and not some magical imitations.”
 
“I would almost have preferred that.” Zapper mumbled to himself, moving his arm, seeing indeed the dent from one of Captain’s bullets. He was tired of getting defeated by the gundams but was learning to get past that with his new life in Ark. This time however he could blame it on the apparent mind control they had been under.
 
“So, what you’re saying is that someone brainwashed us, sicked us upon your human infested world, called us back here before giving us icy hospitality?” Grappler questioned, still eyeing the gundams who were his former enemies.
 
“Sounds about right.” Shute nodded, though the boy knew the small band of ex-villains were not pleased to here that. He shuffled his feet in the snow, biting his lip, hoping the robots would believe their words.
 
“Dah, have to believe.” Destroyer Dom suddenly said, the large robot turning to look at his fellow ex-lords and the small band of zakos. “No other choice.”
 
“What the big fella said.” GunEagle nodded in agreement, jerking a thumb at the purple and black robot. “You can believe us about your humiliation trip or you can stay here doubting us while we go save the world. Either way, we saved you, like it or not.”
 
“We don’t have time to wait. They’re free now so let them follow if they choose so,” Bakunetsumaru replied, the musa gundam having been recovering his stamina during this time. The samurai stood up straight, sheathing his sacred blades, “Our mission is to free Kendra, let us not forget that.” He looked over at Zero and gave him a reassuring nod; the knight inclining his head slightly to show his appreciation though his attention was immediately elsewhere once more.
 
“I don’t think we can afford delay much longer.” Captain told the rescued band of Ark reformists. “Please state your choice.”
 
Zapper was the first to reply.
 
“I’m coming,” The former Dark Axis lord looked certain. “I want to get whoever it was who botnapped us and made us dance around like we were their puppets. I will not be extorted by some dishonorable villain! Not Sazabi, not Zeong, not those Kharn freaks who locked me up and tortured me!” The burgundy robot stomped his foot, pointing to himself, “The only one extorting myself will be me!”
 
“Oh, just brilliant.” Grappler replied sourly, rolling his eye but added, “Count me in, I suppose. No use wondering this apparent icy wasteland alone. Besides, I want to see just who it was who thought they could use us before putting us away for display after they were done playing with us!” The blue ex-lord flexed his clawed hand, imagining digging it into the armor of the one at fault. “Just don’t be calling me a helping hand with your rescue operation.”
 
“Dah, I follow.” Dom chirped, cocking his head to the side, not needing to say more. Naturally the zako soldiers all agreed as well, seeing their leaders choosing to join the gundam rescue party.
 
“Th-this… way…” Came the faint, broke voice, the magic tugging faintly at Zero like a little child pulling at an adult’s piece of clothing for attention. The violet blue gundam shut his eyes for a moment, trying to communicate back through his pact with magic, directing his thoughts.
 
“Hold on, just a little longer. I’m coming.”
 
Haiaku… H-hurry… ah…”
 
The magic connection was completely severed, causing fear to be set loose like a massive bloom of Mmns inside of Zero. After the moment passed the magic link was back but it was barely a tingle, as if the last leg of numbness, it about to disappear completely.
 
“That settled, Zero, can you lead the way?” Captain asked, breaking away from the other conversation, his earned blue eyes settling on the pensive knight gundam. The Winged Knight caught the words, his teal eyes flicking back to look at the military gundam.
 
“Yes, the connection remains present but it’s faltering.” The Lacroan gundam looked solemn, “I think he’s dying.”
 
 
~*————————————–*~
Author’s note:
Guilly-GuiledDragon: Phew! Chapter 5 is officially done!! 8D *insert fireworks* It was getting long so I didn’t want to swamp you guys so I split 5 into 5 and 6. : ) And sorry if I seem more biased toward one character than another. I do try to show equal love and abuse!
 
Also, I applaud those of you who caught references and salutes to movies and books. They a couple were “The Incredibles”, the Bobby Pendragon series, He-Man, GunEagle’s VA’s role as Zelos, The Wizard of Oz, and David and Goliath.
 
I know for you oldies (JOKING), you’re probably going “He-Man doesn’t say that!!” Tis true, I cut it short. Plus GunEagle is known for messing things up, haha. Normally it’d be “By the power of Grayskull… I have the power!,” while raising his sword. ; )
 
Btw, if you’re going “WTCRAP, WHERE DID SHE COME UP WITH THAT GROUP NAME FOR THE MMNS!?”, I have an answer!! Mmns resemble jellyfish so I am calling them by their group name. (I don’t remember if they use an official term in the anime, so forgive me if yes. Calling them simply a ‘colony’ was boring. :B *dork*). I found the list for jellyfish group names here: http://wiki.answers.com/Q/What_is_a_group_of_jellyfish_c alled
So, you try choosing between “smack, smuck, bloom, brood, smuth, or fluther” :/
 
 
Also, Japanese words/native language of Kendra are in italics and sometimes in BOLD unless I used italics for that person’s speech, then it will be regular so you can see the difference in language.
The voice however is speaking telepathically so I have it in italics already so any Japanese words will be bold.
 
*Translations (roughly):
 
Haiaku = go quickly
So see you folks hopefully in, the MOST, 3 months! Until then, this is Guilly-GuiledDragon, signing off! *Salutes*
 
 
 
 
 
 
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The Enemy's Icy Threshold