If you’ve been following the Mercenary Saga, this is a side story which is kind of part of it. To be read before The Battle
Science of Darkness
Onua and Gali Nuva looked, stricken with shock, outside of the door. They had been searching the Makuta fortress at Destral trying to find any semblance of the Makuta left, because an object of enormous power, the Mech of Metru-Nui, had been stolen. They had just been through a dark building, which had been labelled as a science building, and climbed the stairs to find themselves in another world at the top. They fought a Kraata-Kal, the advanced Rahkshi, and climbed down the stairs only to find themselves stuck in the same world at the bottom.
Now they simply stared.
“What do we do?” Gali demanded
“We cannot be stuck here for the rest of our lives!” Onua would not believe it. He slammed the door, which shook the building, but somehow didn't hurt the door at all.
Onua sat down, and rested against the door. He put his hands on his face “Where are we?”
Gali sighed “I don't know!”
“We could be stuck here for good you know?” Onua said. When Gali did not respond, Onua's mind began to run through the entire list of possibilities. The most obvious one would be to check if the top floor of this building.
“I think that we should check if there are any other hatches at the top,” Onua said, standing up.
“I don't think that there are any other hatches up there,” Gali said matter-of-factly.
“We should check anyway-”
“Onua! There are No hatches up there!” Gali said assuredly. She seemed on edge. Onua could not disagree. Silence fell, and Onua continued to think. He was quite literally thinking on his feet.
Well, Onua thought, The most viable possibility would to walk around the city. Chances are that there are more portals. That, however, brings to bear another issue. It is uncertain as to whether those portals will send us to another....place, which we cannot escape from either. That would place us in an even worse position. But it's our only option.
“Gali. I think we have but one option. We need to search around the city for more portals, or maybe a way to reactivate the portal which we came through,” Onua informed, “Do you agree?”
Gali sighed, and laughed half-heartedly “Yes, brother, I suppose so.”
Onua offered her his hand and she took it, pulling herself up. Onua took his quakebreakers, and she took her hydro blades. Onua opened up the door, and slipped through it, Gali following. He carefully watched varyingly ahead and behind, making sure that nothing surprised him. This was the science island of he Makuta, quite possibly the same Destral existing in another dimension, and the Makuta were not know for making fluffy Rahi Bunnies.
They walked through the city for half and hour, when Gali insisted that they rest. This facility might once have been the scientific research and development headquarters for the Makuta, but it was not any longer. At least seven buildings had fallen sideways, creating huge walls of rubble that blocked the main roads. Climbing over them was hardly a game of Pin the Tail on the Ash Bear. Onua destroying them was not an option for two reasons. One, who knew what sinister creatures might lie- living -beneath the rubble. Two, even if there was nothing beneath the rubble, the noise could quite possibly bring whatever else was walking this fallen city.
After trudging over at least the thirtieth pile of rubble, Onua allowed a stop to rest. Despite being the strongest of the Toa, this was even exhausting him. They sat down, and he rested, his breath heavy. They rested, and Onua stood up. He was about to turn to Gali when he felt a vibration in the earth, or in this case, the metal ground.
“Gali,” Onua said, “do you feel that?”
Gali scurried up, and looked frantically around “No, but I'm sure that you're right.”
They looked around, and soon saw three blackened Kraata-Kal flying towards them. They landed atop the pile of rubble and Onua took a definitive look at them. They were of the same shade, but their staves were different colours. One held an orange staff which was topped off by jet-black tips. The other two had silver staffs. The one with the orange staff stepped forward.
“Hello, Toa,” the voice was deceptive and snake-like, and sounded feminine, yet metallic.
“Who are you? What do you want?” Gali rattled off, as if on cue.
“<span style='font-family:courier new'>We are the Rahkkal, and I am Ervon, the chief warrior of the Rahkkal. My massster wissshesss for you. You would be wissse to follow usss.”
“Since when have the Kraata-Kal been intelligent?” Onua questioned, holding his quakebreakers stiffly at his side.
“Sssince Melevon came into exissstenccce. He isss our chief ssscientissst, and wasss the firssst Rahkkal to become coherent. He made tessstsss and experimentsss to make usss coherent. Now be wissse, and follow usss.”
Gali laughed, and twirled around her aqua hooks “Well, unlike my black-armoured brother here, I'm not known for my wisdom.”
“Be that way!” Ervon hissed, and leaped forward. A blast of black plasma came from her staff, and headed straight for Gali, who expertly avoided it. Just as Gali's body was at the optimum of the twist, she grasped out with her aqua hooks and made a swing at Ervon's legs. Hook and leg collided, and Ervon hit the ground hard. Onua leaped for one of the other two Rahkkal with his quakebreakers revving. He was soon locked in combat with the Rahkkal. He quickly overpowered it with pure strength and earth powers combined, and it soon found itself crushed under a pile of rubble.
Onua turned to help Gali, and saw that she was being overpowered by the other two Rahkkal. Onua tried to knock down Ervon, but was too late.
“Sssurrender now, Toa and let your friend live!”
Onua looked about, glancing at the littered remains of the Makuta's once-island. Plenty of places for things to run and hide. Too many, perhaps.
Ervon hissed “No! I will ssslit her throat!”
“Ha! You'll do no such thing. If you had even planned on it in the first place she would be dead by now.”
Ervon glanced about “Perhapsss Toa! But perhapsss we need your broken bodiesss! Did you think of that, eh?”
“Well I.....,” Onua looked at Ervon, “Look behind you.”
“Really? Think you're a tricky Toa, eh? Well, I will look behind me, but my sssoldier will hold your fellow Toa captive.”
Ervon did not joke. The other Rahkkal held Gali by his staff while Ervon turned.
Then she gasped.
A huge, crimson dragon-like figure flew in from the sky, its eyes glowing a lustrous red. Its wingbeats were perfectly silent, but wind blew silent tornadoes from them. Ervon gripped her staff as the winged creature rode in and transformed into a red being. Ervon was agape.
“You! Your name isss not even worthy of ssspeech!”
When the being spoke it was in a distinct bass pitch “As yours was not worthy of creation.”
Ervon hissed “DIE!!!”
She leaped forward and the red figure materialized a cerise pike. He towered half a Bio over Ervon, and the staff was as tall as he. When Ervon was within ranger he swung the staff at her. It struck her in the torso and black sparks flew. She landed on the ground hard. By this time, the other Rahkkal was hesitating, and a fearsome Gali gutted him and dashed towards Onua. The red being huddled over Ervon. Then he drew back the pike and pierced the headplate of the Rahkkal full through.
Finally tearing itself from its paralysis, the other Rahkkal began to fly off.
But it was too late for him.
A bolt of red fired from the ruddy being's staff, and it struck the Rahkkal head on. The Rahkkal exploded into flame, and was enveloped within the fire. Like a meteor, it crashed to the ground, flaming. The figure glanced at the two Toa, and reacted visibly. His face contorted slightly.
“Toa?” he said, his voice seeming to question the reality of what he saw.
Onua stepped forward “Yes, we are Toa. I am Onua and this is Gali.”
“You're not from around her, are you?”
“No, I do not believe that we are. Who are you?”
The figure smiled in an almost beneficial way “Follow me, and your questions shall be answered in time.”
The totally black Rahkkal sat in his throne chair, watching as Melevon showed off the latest models of Rahkkal. But truthfully, the Rahkkal- named Zalon -was not thinking of these things. Melevon was a boring Rahkkal to be around. He was good at his work, the best, certainly, but he took no pride in his work, only boredom.
When Melevon had finished, he walked the three test Rahkkal out, and Zalon slumped against his chair and exhaled softly. It was hard work being the ruler of a new race. Now, he had to wait for Ervon, which was always slow and long. Because that was how she preferred to capture, torture, or kill her enemies.
Slow and long.
Then, he felt it. A twinging in the back of his mind. There were Rahkkal dying, and it was not a faulty experiment of Melevon. Could it be those Toa whom he had run into earlier? Doubtful. Their Shadow Brother was probably running rampant now, slaying them. Perhaps his old enemy, the antagonist of those who had created Zalon. No one was allowed to speak his name, because his actions were far too obscene.
Then, like a whip he felt it in his mind.
Ervon was slain.
Like a curse in the wind, Zalon mouthed the name of him that was his enemy. A headache struck him for an instant and then resided. But acting was hardly Zalon's strong suit. Still, he had been given enough Zamor Spheres in the side. It was time, not for action, but for a plan.
He turned his head and looked for a Rahkkal. He saw one at the door. “You!,” he said with his metallic, dark voice.
The Rahkkal turned “Yesss,” it hissed.
“Retrieve the video camerasss. We mussst dissscover what they are doing! No one ssshall escape me! I ssshall eliminate thossse final Toa! And then, I ssshall rule Two universssesss!!!”
The tall red figure- who had yet to say anything else -had led Onua and Gali to a darker, but more roomier side of the island city. He led them all the way to a dark doorway.
“Come in,” he said. When he opened the door a huge room stood their. Machinery was stacked everywhere. However, it was far from rubbish. The junk was in a fine and distinct pile, while everything else was set up in an adequate assortment.
“Sit down,” he said. They did, but Onua was in acute awe of it all. He simply stared at the dozens of tools and weapons. They had the probability to all be extraordinarily deadly.
Gali stood, and cut to the chase “Who are you? Where are we? What are we doing here?”
The tall red figure sat down in a chair certainly too small for him “I am Avatar, the creation of my master. He shall enter soon.”
“Are you a robot?”
“I am an automated form of life. So perhaps, yes I am,” he answered.
“But you don't sound like a robot,” Gali persisted
“I am the companion of my master, the friend of he. I have several voice tracks, but he generally prefers the soldier track, as that is what I am.”
Onua finally spoke up “When will he be here?”
“When he is ready. Then, Toa, rest assured all of your questions shall be answered, as he is much more qualified to answer them then I am.”
Taking the hint, they quieted down. After a good ten minuted of waiting, Avatar shifted in his seat.
“My master comes. He will be with you shortly. I shall leave. There is much more for me to do,” Avatar walked over to the shelf of tools and picked one up. It was a huge blaster rifle. Avatar took it, and walked from the room. Soon, a trap door on the floor began to shift, and from it came a small figure, shrivelled slightly, and with red armour. His size was between that of a Turaga and a normal sized Matoran. He was silent, and then he took the chair which Avatar had sat in and looked at the two Toa Nuva.
He sat there staring for a bit, and then he looked at them “You know that you can't exist?”
“Er,” Onua stuttered, “I think we exist.”
“But you can't, all Toa are dead. The Makuta took over this parallel universe and killed them all centuries ago.”
“I think I'm starting to follow,” Onua said, “We are from another universe. One where the Makuta have been vanquished.”
“Ah, interesting. Now, what do you want?”
“Well,” Gali answered, “we want to return to our dimension. But it would be to know what is going on here.”
“Oh, well, an experiment gone wrong. That was Melevon. Avatar said you already know who he is. However, the second Kraata-Kal, named Zalon also became intelligent through the experiments of Melevon, and unfortunately the manipulative power of Zalon is greater then Melevon's.”
“How are we to escape?”
“Well, that's a bit of an issue. Zalon controls the switch which allows the dimensional gate to open. You would have to switch it on...And survive.”
“Are you from this dimension, or another?” Onua asked
The figure nodded, and then came down from his chair. He mumbled something “Today is bleak, and tomorrow will bring light.”
“I beg your pardon?” Gali said.
The figure turned “Oh, it is a quote from the Prophecy of End-Light. It has yet to be fulfilled here. To answer your question I am from this dimension.”
“Are the Makuta dead?” Gali queried.
“Well yes....And no. You see, their evil motives are dead, but one still remains.”
“And who is that?” Onua asked
“Well, you see, that is I. I am Miserix.”
The security cameras had been recording at the time of Ervon's battle with the Toa Nuva, and the entire battle had been recorded. Zalon watched with growing interest until Ervon began to loose. Then he was infuriated. These were Toa from somewhere else, and they were not fun to be around. When Ervon was slain, he screamed in a way so hideous only a Rahkkal could come close to making the sound.
“Missserix hasss gone too far!!! He mussst pay!!! I will ssslay them with my own ssstaff!!! Sssoldier!!”
A soldier turned towards him “Yesss.”
“Gather our forcccesss. Missserix ssshall fall!!!”
“Miserix?!?” Gali and Onua exclaimed simultaneously.
“Yes, Toa, I am Miserix. And you are the Toa Nuva,” Miserix said without animosity.
“But you're dead!”
“In your dimension, I may be. But not here, dear Toa, not here Gali and Onua. I am the lone inhabitant in the universe fighting for good. All the Matoran, Toa, Skakdi, Vortixx, all are slain in this universe. Dark Hunters and Order of Mata-Nui alike, no one else lives. Onua, Avatar told me through telepathy how fascinated you were with these weapons. They are the only ones in the universe. I could have long since destroyed the Rahkkal, but I did not, because I wanted to turn them to my side, so that we could rebuild the universe. If I killed them, I alone would remain. This is not the Mata-Nui robot Toa, this is the Island of Mata-Nui.”
Gali and Onua gasped.
“But Toa, I am now left with no choice but to commit genocide for the fate of two universes. Zalon has surely already penetrated the other with his forces. Avatar said that he had much work to do. That is true. He is providing reconnaissance of the fortress. We must destroy it. And you must destroy the gate into your dimension and escape through it.”
Miserix kicked over the chair and grabbed a huge weapon. Onua looked at him with hopeful eyes, but Miserix shook his head “Onua Nuva, this gun is mine. But for you both, I have a special thing.”
Miserix dashed over to a wall and flipped a switch. The wall turned around, revealing six suits in black. They resembled black Exo-Toa suits with two black tube jutting out of the lower right shoulder.
“Take two,” he said, “I had planned for six, but you two are the only who will ever take them. They are of my own invention, I call them, Toa-Sec armour. Sec is Ancient Matoran for power. The cylinders will amplify your elemental powers. Now go ahead and get into them.”
Gali and Onua complied, walking towards the armour. Onua touched the glossy black surface of the armour with his weather hands. He pulled down the chest-plate and saw a seat lurking inside of it. Uneasily, he took a seat in the dark gap. Three bright blue lights, one to his right, one to his left, and the last one above him, switched on. Ominously, the front plate closed. Onua felt the seat lifting up, and then, something happened. His armour began a strange process of adhesion to the suit, then, as his head raised to the top, he was part of the suit. Or rather, it was part of him.
Onua turned and looked at Gali, and she smiled at him.
“Thank you Miserix,” Gali said
“Yes, thank you,” Onua added
“Hmm, you're welcome. But there is another thing.”
“Yes,” Gali responded
“Well, you see, from what I understand, time does not pass in the other dimension while you are in this one. When you enter the gate and open the door on the bottom floor, it will have been like you have opened the door, closed it, and opened it again.”
“What of it?” Onua requested
“Well, you will now have a unique advantage on the other Toa Nuva. You will be older then them by a few hours. I just thought that I'd warn you.”
“Thank you for what you have done for us, Miserix. Your sacrifices here will not be forgotten.”
“Oh, let them be. As would wish, if you please. I want to live my life. Rebuild this city. Continue my experiments. It will be fine.”
Miserix nodded, and opened the door. He motioned for the Toa Nuva to walk out. They did so. Gali glanced at Onua and smiled. It was amazing what they had been through. Miserix loaded his gun and frowned, staring straight ahead, waiting for the Toa to lead. They did as their black armour gleamed in the sun of Mata-Nui. After a while, they passed a building, from which Avatar jumped and proceeded to join them. They soon reached a building, and all of the Rahkkal stood from it, either standing or hanging from its walls.
Behind it, they all knew, was the black building. They would have to enter it from the top, but that would be no issue. Miserix hurried up ahead of them, as a huge Rahkkal walked out in front of the others.
“Zalon,” Miserix said, snarling.
“Miserix,” Zalon said
“I offer you one chance to let these Toa back to their own dimension and to join me, or else I shall be forced to destroy you all.”
“You would do no such thing, a weakling like you, Miserix.”
“I have waited long enough. If you will not join me to the benefit of this universe, then you must die!” he revved up his gun and fired a shot. It hit and instantly disintegrated the Rahkkal target. He turned to Gali and Onua “Go ahead of me. You can take them on, but time is of the essence!”
Gali and Onua nodded, and charged. They fired the wrist-mounted elemental amplifiers and blasted Rahkkal from the sky leaving either Miserix or Avatar to eliminate them. They reached the door and Onua kicked it in. They saw the lever and ran for it.
But Zalon jumped in front of them.
“Stop! Do not dare!”
“Move, or be vanquished!” Onua cried out, “We shall return home!” Gali aimed her wrist-mounts and fired a powerful jet of water. It blasted Zalon through the wall. Onua flipped the switch and dashed through the hole made by Zalon. He grabbed Gali's hand and used a pillar of earth to send them hurtling upwards. When they reached the top, three Rahkkal stood at the entrance. Gali summoned more and more water blast to knock them off. Two fell, and the other got into combat with Onua, who ended up launching the unfortunate Rahkkal off the building.
“Wait!” Onua cried, “I need to set a time reset to make this building's foundation crumble.”
He stared at the building for a minute when a large crack appeared. Gali opened the hatch and Onua leaped in with Gali close behind. Onua and Gali curled themselves into balls and rolled loudly down the staircase. They closed their eyes as the building collapsed around them. They had to go through the first-floor door if they wanted to be in their dimension.
It seemed like seven eternities before Onua's body smashed through the door, blowing it off its hinges. Gali followed, and Onua tried to regain balance. When he had, he looked up at the sky.
“Quiet,” he said slowly, “but not serene. I believe that the Toa will need our help sister.”
Gali laughed “Let's just hope they aren't in another dimension too!”
Onua smiled “Yes, I agree.”
And they walked off in to the battle awaiting them.</span>