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Chemical Chaos

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Chemical Chaos

Post by RKRobot on 11/14/2014, 12:26 pm

This is it.  The big one.  The story I began over 10 years ago, finally re-written a fifth time... or at least, the first chapter.
Chemical Chaos.
Synopsis: There's been a time in everyone's life where they wish they could go back in time and change history.  To Wrathias Kaos, breaking every rule in the book of time travel is an easy oversight when it comes to saving his family and the world he loves, Planet Tropic.  With one month to change his life for the better, Wrath does everything in his power to stop the Third World War and rescuing his mother's side of the family from ultimate demise.
The version you're about to read is COMPLETELY DIFFERENT from my original intentions, but with the added bonuses of more character development, more lore and more plot.  Hope you like it!
((If you see any grammatical errors or spelling mistakes, pardon those; let me know in a comment where it is and I'll fix it up!  Thanks!))


Chemical Chaos, Chapter 1
============================================

Sirens wailed in the distance as the city lights flashed their vibrant colors.  Citizens darted from the sidewalks and streets, hurrying close to buildings and shuffling into alleyways to make way for the rush of oncoming Uca (flying cars) and Kesseu (air wheel trucks or busses) flying down the roads.  Bystanders tried to count the number of vehicles as they went by, but they moved much too speedily for anyone to get an accurate number.  Rubberneckers on the road pulled over to avoid being hit, and everyone with a portable camera snapped pictures left and right.  This was the second time this month that the city had witnessed this intense of a case.

Running away from the pack was an open Terici (a three wheeled automatic bike) with two riders, one small girl driving and one larger Kokouman in the back.  As they drove faster and faster, the Kokouman, dressed in an insane amount of body paint and wildly waving her rattling staff, fired blasts of energy that shattered sidewalks, parts of the road, and streetlights, hoping to throw off the cops behind them.  She was screaming in Kokoumane, cackling and taunting the city with horrid language.

“Ya are a bunch of chicken!  Can’t touch me, ‘cause I’m tha one ta open the Dark Horizon!  Ieeyeeeyeeyee!  Cowardice turkey!  Fleshy mongrel!  Thin feathered bird brain!”

The more she shouted and blasted, the more fear she struck into the minds of the innocents, a few of them being injured by the burns of her attacks, others being crushed by the crumbling of the light towers.  Tourists were scared and confused, panicking and screaming as they hurried to safety.  The natives, however, were watching the skies, waiting for the moment where they would arrive.

Thunder roared in the distance, lighting soon following up over the horizon.  Dark clouds dominated the starry night sky, and bright flashes electrified the air.  When the thunderstorm caught up with the high speed chase, the crazy Kokouman looked up in horror, slapping her legs in eagerness to go faster.

“Go fast!  Go fast!  They come now!” she squawked frantically, practically bouncing up and out of her seat like it was going to help them.

“I can’t go any faster!  Not without any pain!” the bald child in the front said, squinting and leaning her body forward up against the steering bar.  

“I will heal you later!  Escape them, first!  We almost to the edge of the city!” the beaked being shouted, pointing forward to the bridge.  That bridge was their way out and they were almost there!  They just had to outrun one of the fastest beings on the planet, that was all!

A bolt of lightning struck down next to their vehicle, erupting the ground beneath it and sending the two on the Terici flying into the air.  The young girl quickly enveloped herself in a small pink bubble, smashing that into the building behind her, unharmed.  Glass and rubble fell to the sidewalk below, harming only a few people underneath it.  The louder of the two, however, hit a smaller light tower and collapsed to the ground, her body bruised with dirt and burns from the lightning.  The sirens finally came to a stop, as did the vehicles that finally caught up to the perpetrators.  Several humans and Koko stepped out of their Uca and Kesseu, armed with guns, bats and tasers.  There was no way she would escape.

Slowly she got up from the street, not bothering to dust herself off or straighten the mask she wore.  The younger human girl had now bounced down next to her ally, popping the bubble with a mental command.  She looked frantically around her, her cheeks puffing up in fear.  She looked up at her friend, who had eyes locked on something across the street.  The bald girl slowly turned her head to meet eye to eye with the ones who stopped them.

The Tropican Sisters.

“Antikua… What do we do now?” she said to the Kokouman, worried about what would happen next.

“We gonna fight,” she answered, firmly.

“SHAMAN ANTIKUA, PSYCHICK, THE TWO OF YOU ARE UNDER ARREST BY ORDER OF THE CORNUCOPIAN GOVERNMENT AND THE INTERNATIONAL KOKO ARMY.  YOU ARE CHARGED WITH BLATANT THEFT, SECOND DEGREE MURDER, CIVIL DISRUPTION, ESCAPING PRISON AND LACK OF COOPERATION WITH THE KOKO ARMY,” shouted one of the Koko officers over a megaphone.

“YOU HAVE TWO CHOICES: COME QUIETLY WITH US OR BE UNWILLINGLY SENT TO THE PRISON OF AZURIA FOR YOUR CRIMES BY THE SISTERS OF TROPIC,” another yelled to the accused.  From across the way, Antikua could see that the blond girl was getting anxious.  If she wanted a fight, she would certainly get one.

Without warning, the Shaman took off towards the Sisters, her rattle glowing with enchanted power.  Psychick screamed to call her back, now crying in fear of what would happen to them.  The older sister seemed surprised that they wouldn’t go with the officers, but the younger one was ecstatic.

“Tori, watch out!  You’re not recharged yet!” shouted the larger girl, reaching out to try and grab her sister’s shoulder before she leapt forward.  She had just missed the edge of her sleeve and stumbled forward, concerned that her sibling wouldn’t be ready to take on such a dangerous foe.  To her surprise, though, Tori had managed to jump kick the Kokouman in the face and still land on her feet.

“Don’t worry about it, Rocky!  You did your part, so now I’ll finish up tonight!  You can get the next one~” the girl said with a smile, as she turned her head a little to wink at her sister.  Rocky exhaled through her nose, frustrated that she didn’t exactly understand what would happen if she became exhausted again…

That happened twice in her life time, which was two times far too many…

Antikua wasn’t finished just yet.  After being propelled backward, she fired green gaseous balls of goo from the top of her wood and metal shaker.  The misting green smoke was quickly blown out of the way once Tori began to spin rapidly.  The intense wind from her twirls easily picked up the dust from the destroyed street, sending shards of rocks and dirt flying about randomly.  Ending her spin, Tori flicked up one of the flaming balls of goo with the edge of her shoe, and began to bop it about on her knees, feet and hips like a hackysack.  Antikua’s beak fell open in shock.  How could she not be affected by this?!  Without another moment to think, Tori punted the extinguished ball of green slime into the stomach of the Shaman, sending her back to the ground.

“You got anything else I can play with, Antikua?” Tori said with a mocking voice, her hands on her hips.  As she began to yuk it up, a pulsation of psychic energy brushed the super sister off her feet and into her sibling.  Psychick had stepped onto the battlefield and looked furious, her cranium pulsating with energy.

As Rocky helped Tori up from the attack, she growled at the little girl, who was half her size, both in height and weight.  The big sister then marched over to the kid, the ground shaking with every step she took.  The bald girl screamed at the top of her lungs as another wave of psychic energy tried to push Rocky back in the same way it did Tori, but it only moved back her by a few feet.  With utmost concentration and swift movements of her arms, Rocky stared intently at the girl, clenching her outstretched fists until two holes in the ground formed under her feet.  In an instant later, the holes closed tightly around Psychick’s feet.  The pavement quickly crumbled up her legs and soon, over took her knees.

The girl panicked, trying to lift her lower half out with everything she had in her.  While all her attempts were futile, that didn’t stop her from unleashing her true powers.  Larger chunks of pavement and pieces of building slowly lifted into the air around her.

“She’s mastering Psychokinesis…” Rocky murmured, knowing she couldn’t stop it, but she certainly had an idea on how to block against it.  The super sister then dug her right foot into the ground and pushed it forward.  Once the girl started throwing the pieces at her, Rocky pulled her arms up in a lifting motion, destroying the street in front of her to raise a large cement wall into the air.  The chunks smashed into the shield, scattering into smaller pieces upon impact.  Once the last pieces was thrown, Psychick searched the area for any more damage-dealing pieces, trying to break down the wall.  When she finally found a good enough piece, it was too late; the wall came fast upon her, curving over her head and around her body, sealing her in darkness.  Rocky stepped back from her arched position, dark sweat dripping from her head.  Tori had finally enough balance back to stand up alongside her sister, the two of them watching as the police force moved in on the two villains.

As a team of four lifted up Antikua’s body, shoving most of the goo off of her, Tori turned to her sister and half smiled.  “It took forever to find these two… huh?” she commented, panting slightly in her speech.  Rocky nodded, and wiped her sweat onto her sleeve.

“I’m glad we caught them.  It’ll take a while for them to break out of Azuria,” she told her younger sibling.  “They’ve got better security for those with superpowers.”

Then the cops broke Psychick out of her pavement prison to find her unconscious, due to running out of oxygen.  After digging her out and carrying her off, Rocky continued with her comments.

“I’m surprised she developed so much, Psychick, I mean.”

“Can’t you just call her by her real name, Elana?  Enough with the bogus superhero names… don’t you think it’s stupid?” Tori retorted, rolling her eyes at the alias.

The brunet shrugged, frowned and wiped her brow again.  “It’s a respect thing.  I don’t care if they’re crooks, they’re going to be arrested anyway.  Why not just give them what little gratification they deserve, when they won’t last long anyway?”

“Who deserves to be called ‘Psychick?’  She couldn’t come up with anything better?” Tori scoffed loudly.  “And I just thought Antikua was her real name, that’s why I say it!”  Pushing off of her sister half-playfully, the twelve year old left Rocky’s side without looking back.  Rocky only looked to the ground, questioning herself.  What did a criminal deserve?  They had incredible power, but when they only used it for themselves, or when they used it to hurt others, did they really warrant respect and fairness?  Rocky looked back up, shaking her head and brushing off some dust off her poofy hair.

Her sister had walked over to the cops, expressing her tiredness through her slouched posture and slow movements.  Rocky couldn’t hear what she was saying over the hustle and bustle of the beings on the sidewalks and streets, taking pictures and shouting their fears and worries.  When the volume got too much for her to handle, she too went to the police where the sisters would be protected from any unruly civilians.  Looking back at the destroyed battleground that was Sothke Street, Palm City, her skin crawled with the fleeting thought:

‘Maybe I am in the wrong to assume respect and fancy titles from people when I do this to their world?’

——————

“Elana Housett, Species: Human.  Age: 9.  Supernatural power: Psychokinesis and telepathy,” said the warden of Azuria Prison aloud to his officers, slamming down a small stack of papers in a light colored folder.  Before them was a dashboard of controls and a one-way mirror, displaying the bald-headed girl seated at the long end of a table, parallel to their view.  Chains bound her legs to the floor and a cap with blinking lights and switches was strapped to her dome.  Her eyes were emotionless, and her pale skin shone brightly in the fluorescent lighting.  She appeared to be looking at the ground, but the warden didn’t want to be fooled by this girl’s ruse.

“How long has she been a convict?” he asked a Koko officer on the right.

“Two years ago she was seen decimating the orphanage she was sent to upon birth, and soon after, burned her home village down.  We couldn’t save everyone in Lilac, Gardenia that night…” the guard finished, putting his feathered hands into his jacket’s pockets.  The warden sighed heavily.

“So, she’s been out since then.  Right.  I’ll have to make sure to get the top psychoanalysts in the country to research her.  Now what about, Antikua?  Do we even know her real name?” he said, turning around to the room behind him, revealing a nearly identical setup to Psychick’s.  The Shaman was also seated at the far end of the table, but much more active than her partner.  With her mystical mask removed, her true face was revealed. It had a human shape and size, but her mouth and nose was that of a long rust colored beak.  Her eyes were narrow ovals that took up much of her face with catlike pink pupils.  Her eyebrows were thin and long, nearly connected at the center, and her scruffy dark brown hair was in no better condition than it was during the fight.

When the other officers turned to look at her, she began to talk out loud in her broken speech, but not to them.  Her twisted smile was turned to the sky, and her laughter made one of the human cops quiver.

“Keeeekeekeekee!  They thinkin’ its gonna stop me!  They thinkin’ to themselves, ‘Antikua doesn’t see us comin’’.  Antikua knows more about them than they know each other!  They can call on the sisters all they want!  It not gonna make me change.  You cannot change me.  You cannot get me to stop do what I do,” she cawed, her words frightening the warden enough for him to quickly reach for the mute switch on the dashboard.  Once she was muted, he turned back to his team and nodded to them.

“Alright,” he began, then cleared his throat.  “Now that we’ve gotten them under our custody, we can alert the Kokogenor of Tropicana so he could start issuing for repairs on Palm.  I’ll contact the psychoanalysts, the doctors, all that riffraff,” he said, loudly, gesturing to himself before pointing to the officers with each syllable he spoke.  “The rest of you, take even greater measures when dealing with these crooks.”

He then opened the exit door for the officers to depart, stepping aside so they could pass through.  He then muttered as they walked out, “Just because Rocky and Tori took them down in a matter of minutes, doesn’t mean they’ll always be there to do it again.”

—————

The Kesseu finally rolled to a stop, opening its creaky door just enough away from the sidewalk for the Tropican Sisters to step off onto the concrete.  Before they had a chance to step away from the platform, two older figures hurried up to each of the girls, embracing them in full.  It wasn’t until a full two minutes later did the Kesseu leave the Kaos family to walk home together.

When home was just in their line of sight, the two-story orange building with the large tree leaves drooping from the rooftops, tucked away at the edge of the development, Tori was finishing her retelling of their story to the girls’ father and mother.

“So yeah, the cops were really quick about it this time!  It wasn’t like the last time, where we had to help them position the helicopter or anything, so I guess it was easier to get the job done!” she said happily, smiling in relief that it was over nonetheless.

“That’s good.  I’m glad they were there to help.  I still can’t forgive that chapter in Watermellington for forcing you two to carry off those burglars by yourselves last summer.  What if they had woken up and ambushed the two of you?” Johnek, their father replied, adjusting his glasses on his large nose.

“Then they would have finished them off again!” Cairoule chimed in, the girls’ short but loud mother.  “Don’t you have faith in our kids?” she inquired with one eyebrow raised.

“Of course I do,” he defended, quickly.  “I never questioned their capabilities!  Only that of the rest of the world.  If our children are risking their lives to defend the public, giving it their all each and every day they’re on duty, shouldn’t everyone else be doing the same?  Maybe it would give our kids a chance to take a vacation sometime…”

“I couldn’t agree more,” the older woman commented as she walked up to the door and unlocked it.  “When are you off next, Rocky?”

Rocky quickly shook her head frantically, as if the question snapped her out of a little trance.  She had phased out for most of the conversation, an effect of being tired, but she still answered the question after stepping insider the house.

“I’m… I think tomorrow we have a day off, but I don’t know anything else…” she said with uncertainty.  She then turned to her sister, who was bending down to take off her shoes.  “Tori?”

The blond haired girl picked up her upper half to put her hands on her hips and tilt her head to the side in thought.  She finally turned back to her sibling with an equally unsure answer.  “Yeah, tomorrow is the only day I remember hearing we had off.”

Sounds of disappointment came from both parents.  “Great.  Now they’re not telling us when our overworked kids have time to themselves,” Cairoule grumbled, locking the door behind them and then storming into the kitchen to the left of the entrance.  Beeps from the buttons on the phone could be heard from in there, while Johnek looked to his daughters with sadness in his eyes.

“We were planning to go to Bananopolis for the weekend on a shopping trip, but that doesn’t seem like its going to happen.  Are you sure you don’t recall any other days being mentioned in your meetings?”

Both girls shook their heads in unison, as neither of them had any idea.  Both Rocky and Tori racked their brains for any sort of memory involving time off, but nothing came up.  “I could check my database, if you want me to, Dad,” Rocky said, pointing to her head.

Johnek shrugged.  “If you feel like it would help, but for now we’ll just have to cancel plans completely or move them to next month.”

He left the two in the foyer, Tori’s cheeks puffing up in frustration.  “Why can’t we just have a normal work schedule like everybody else!?” she shouted in a hushed voice, knowing her mother would yell if she did while she was on the phone.  Rocky placed a hand on her shoulder, slowly closing and opening her eyes as she responded.

“Who would want to substitute their time with the likes of us?  No one wants to give that up, Tori.”

“No!  They have to!  I don’t want to be doing this all the time!  I want to take a vacation, and I want to go to Bananopolis with Mom and Dad!” she yelled, stomping her foot on the ground, this time, not watching her tone.

“TORI, QUIET DOWN, I’M ON THE PHONE!” screamed Cairoule from the dining room.  This only frustrated the twelve year old more, and she took off down the hall and upstairs, not realizing she still had one shoe on her feet.  When she did figure this out, she roared in frustration and pulled the shoe off of her foot forcefully, then chucked it down the steps.  Once she was free, she finished her sprint up the steps and into her room, slamming the door behind her with no regrets.

Rocky covered her face with her hands, sighed into them and slid them down her face.  After picking up Tori’s shoe, and removing her own to put down by the front entrance, she opened the basement door and stepped down the stairs, the scent of oil and mechanical rust filling the air.  It was sort of calming to her, but also triggering.  Memories flooded in from years ago, much of them bits and pieces from the surgery she experienced; the very surgery that saved her life.

The brunet then went over to the computer desk, a half-circle table with four monitors and eight hard drives underneath, two drives per monitor.  Two of the monitors had rubber foldable keyboards laid out in front of them.  Once Rocky booted up one of computers, she also pulled a long wire from a drawer built into the table.  One end of the wire was shaped like an ear bud, and the other looked something like a malformed house key.  She double checked the wire’s ends before plugging the earbud into her own ear and the other part into the hard drive underneath the table.  This activated a program called “Endoskeleton” that popped up on the desktop.

Using only her first finger, Rocky touched the start button underneath the program’s title.  A model of a skeleton - her skeleton - appeared on screen, giving her the option of what part of her body to click on.  To activate her memory, Rocky touched her digital skull, then zoomed in to the part of her brain that contained all memory.  A few seconds of loading later, a new window popped up on the the screen, asking her for a “beginning date” and an “ending date”.  Rocky quickly typed out the date of last week for the first box, and typed in today’s date for the second.  This provided a list of various memories she had experienced from last week until now.  She spent the next half an hour searching through various text files from her conversations with her sister and their bosses, hoping to stumble upon when they would be able to have off next.

Finally, she found something, a speckle of a clue that encouraged her to read through memory.  It was a conversation between her, Tori, and two others, particularly, the Vice President of the Country and one of the members of the Kongrea (Congress).

“We’re getting an influx of orders from all over the planet asking you two to deal with their criminals.  We’ve… already told them you won’t refuse,” the Vice had spoken.

“You can’t do that, it’s our decision!” Tori exclaimed proudly.  It was here that Rocky could tell that she had been trying to fight for a break for a while now.  It’s no wonder she got so angry about not being able to go away for a weekend.

“Can’t we just do one or two of them?  We don’t have time to do all them and still have our weekends-“ Rocky had tried to interject, when the being of Kongrea spoke up.

“That’s another thing.  We’re going to have to cut down on your days.  There’s just not enough time to give.  We’ll be working all month as well.  No one is getting a day off.”

“No, why?!  Get someone to fill in for us!” Tori once again shouted.  The images were coming back now in her mind, and Rocky relieved seeing the look of disappointment and anger on her sister’s face.  It made her cringe.

“We can only give you a day… in a week from tomorrow, you will have 24 hours to do whatever it is you need to, then return to the Gray—“ the Vice started, the tone in his voice, solemn.

Then it hit her; Rocky suddenly remembered her sibling getting so angry that her hands began to generate hot white lighting.  The electricity destroyed the lighting in the room quickly, the two men backing up and covering their faces in fear.  Rocky had to pull the girl back, stand in front of her and take the incoming blast the girl fired.  How could she have forgotten the intense surge of power she had taken for those greedy government folk?  That painful blast that could have peeled through any other mortal being?  The same blast that caused her to nearly collapse on the way out of the building…  If it weren’t for Tori calling for help, she wouldn’t have recovered as well as she did.

Rocky then ripped out the cord from her ear and pushed herself away from the desk, doubling over in sickness.  She held her stomach, right where the blast of energy hit her, remembering the pain in full.  Falling to her knees and shaking, Rocky could not contain her tears, thinking back to her original question she had asked herself.

“I am not in the wrong to want such respect from them.  They don’t care about us.  They don’t care about the people they’re supposed to protect.  It is only me who cares.  The one in the line of fire,” she told herself, repeating it over and over, forcing it to sink in.

It was then that she heard a faint scream from the staircase and footsteps getting louder and louder.  Soon, she could feel hands on her body, wrapping around her arms and touching her neck.  Eventually, a slap to the face caused the girl to gasp loudly, as if she was resurfacing from water.  She could finally see what was going on now - her mother and father were beside her, holding her close and looking very worried.

“Rocky, don’t you dare scare us like that!” Cairoule shouted, covering her mouth with one hand and holding Rocky’s gloved hand with the other.

“What happened?  What were you doing?!” Johnek demanded, looking into her eyes, not caring that his glasses were falling off of his face.

“M-Memory check…” she spoke quietly.  “Just a memory check.”

“Were you trying to remember if you had any—?!  Rocky, I wasn’t serious about—!  That’s it,” her father stuttered for a while, trying to figure out the right words to say.  He finally stood up carefully, walked over to the computer Rocky was using and shut it off after quickly glancing over the same memory she was inspecting.  He growled at the information, his hands grabbing at the roots of his hair and ready to tear them right out of his scalp.  Cairoule looked at him fearfully, causing him to stop, but not without kicking a nearby chair over on its side.

His gaze focused onto Rocky, consciousness fully regained and awareness back up to normal.  She looked up at him, as much as she didn’t want to.  She feared for what he would say, but was surprised by what actually came out of his mouth.

“You’re not going in.  Not the day after tomorrow, not the day after that.  Not until next week,” he stated firmly, counting on his fingers and held them up to show her.  “That’s eight days off.  You and your sister are staying home until you’ve had enough time to rest.”

After helping Rocky and her mother up, Johnek took off his glasses and wiped the dampness off of his face with his bare arm.  With his other arm, he pulled in his daughter and hugged her tightly.  “You’ve both suffered through enough right now.  It’s too early - it will always be too early to lose either of you right now.”

Shedding a few tears with the words her father spoke, Rocky shut down the rest of her memory that night, deleting the files so she wouldn’t have to relive her breakdown.

The only thing she kept was a promise she made to herself:
“I am not in the wrong.  I will protect the planet and the people they refuse to take care of.  My name is Rocky the Robot, and I am a superhero.”

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Re: Chemical Chaos

Post by RKRobot on 12/10/2014, 7:05 am

Chemical Chaos, Chapter 2
============================================

There wasn’t much time to prepare, let alone repair his shoes from yesterday’s accident.  The pain he felt was still alive in his system…

-

“Augh!  It hurts!!”

“That’s because you’re putting too much pressure on it!  Let go!”

“But it hurts more when I let go!”

“Make up your mind, Wrath!”

Strong claws clasped the shoulders of the whining dark blue hedgehog.  Deep red-orange eyes pierced into the moist brown eyes of the young boy, instantly muting his high pitched voice.  It took another few moments for him to finally relax and remove his quivering hand from his broken and sparking shoe.  Wrathias Kaos tried to squeak out a sigh as Kane the Komodo Dragon released his grip on his shoulders.  The reptile then carefully helped the hedgehog sit down and gently lifted up his leg to inspect the damage.

The sparks flew off the broken, black front plate of the green and black accessory, continuing as Kane removed it from Wrath’s foot.  The hedgehog winced and clenched his fists and teeth, worried that it would cause even more pain now that he stopped holding it.  To his surprise, it was incredibly relieving to feel the warm atmosphere hit his metallic foot, which was slightly dented inward and burnt at the toe.  Wrath opened only one eye to the injury and began to cry again.

“Ow, ow, ow!!  It’s worse than I thought!!” he shouted, only for Kane to growl loudly in response.

“You’re making it worse!” the Komodo snarled with one hand covering the injury and the other latched onto Wrath’s chin.  “I need you to be calm for me while I fix this.  Please.”

Those next several minutes were agonizing for both Wrath and Kane.  All the while, the two were worried whether or not Wrath would be able to walk normally again or require real “medical” attention rather than rely on his best friend.  At last, the dragon was able to fix the the boy’s foot after much sweat and tears were shed.  Wrath opened his soaking wet eyes to the finished job; his foot was back to a normal figure, with burns unfortunately permanent.  Regardless, the hedgehog was immensely grateful for the small repairs that were done, sniffing loudly before wrapping his arms around Kane.

The Komodo further embraced the hug from his friend, exhaling deeply as he felt the thankful warmth from the metal hedgehog.

“I don’t know what I’d do without you, Kane,” Wrath sniffled again, his voice much more calm now that the pain was subsiding.  Then his eyes locked onto the broken shoe laying behind the lizard.  He looked away, knowing that was going to be equally as difficult to get that thing back to normal functionality.  Like his body, it too, was especially crafted to benefit and protect his exposed “skin”.  He couldn’t risk to leave it behind or to create a new one.  There wasn’t any time.

Both guys let go of each other, and Wrath wiped his nose with his gloved hand.

“Now, what about my shoe?” he asked with a weak smile.  Kane reached behind him and picked it up, examining both parts, the black front covering now completely broken off.  He lifted each part before his eyes, mentally judging the process it would take to put these things back together properly.  It wasn’t going to be simple, but it could work with a little welding.

“I’m going to need you to help me with this one, fireball,” the dragon sighed, then smirked.  Wrath shrugged, then started to stand up.  He used Kane’s shoulder, which was level to his head when Wrath was seated, to erect his stance, but lifted up the newly fixed leg since it still stung.

“Okay, but we should probably go home to do anything else.  I can try to get back-“

Before Wrath was allowed to finish his words, an explosion ignited mere miles away from the two.  It was loud enough for Wrath to cover both of his long pointed ears, and eruptive enough for the ground to shake beneath their feat.  The crashing of trees and shattering of glass in the distance scared innocents to shrieks and wails.  The red sky became darker and cloudier with smoke and fire, and the sounds of metal crashing into metal was disturbingly loud.

She was back.

Kane turned around to Wrath, who eyes began to well up with tears.  Instantly he gave the kid his shoe back, but held onto him for a little longer.  He forced his gaze onto the boy, who’s ears slowly descended below his upper spine in sadness.  

“Wrath, listen to me.  You have to head back to the house on your own.  You know the way,” Kane spoke to him a rushed, yet calm tone, trying not to panic the hedgehog he cared for so dearly.  “Not the normal way.  Take the third route.  You shouldn’t have any trouble with that one.”

Wrath nodded, but then shook his head frantically.  “No, no, no!  Don’t leave me alone!  I don’t want you to die, Kane!” he screamed, shoving himself into the reptile’s chest.  Kane shut his eyes tightly, clenched his teeth and carefully removed the boy from his body.  He stood upright, his 6 foot stature towering over the 3 foot tall hedgehog.

“I need you to be strong.  If not for me, for your mother, for your father, for your family.  I’ll make it back, Wrath,” he said, a single tear dripping from his own eyes and rolling down his cheek.  In his mind, he had the confidence he was going to find Ikari and Roben, but he wasn’t sure if he would be able to survive them.

Kane wasn’t afraid of death.  He was afraid of what would happen to Wrath if he died.

“Go.  You can make it.”

-

Now, no one was left to help him hold the front plate of his mechanical accessory while he welded the edges on to the sides of the shoe.  It was much too dangerous to go without it on; the miserable trek home that day without it on was proof enough of that.  He had to do this on his own.  Using a carefully constructed, makeshift crank made of scraps of metal to push up against the protective black plating, he sparked up a flame from his trembling fingertips and slowly was able to fix the broken shoe.  That took two whole hours to get it right, double checking each crevasse and adjusting every loose screw and nail he had in him.  After it was cooled off, he put it back on, sealing the shoe in place with his metallic ankle blades.  Testing took another few minutes, but for the most part it felt fine.  He was glad he could do it on his own, but that feeling fell behind as quickly as it had come.  He had to get back out there and help out again today, even if he was only running on 6 interrupted hours of sleep.

He rushed up the creaking staircase and left the basement without closing the door behind.  No one was going to come in, anyway.

With the front door locked behind him, the dark blue hedgehog dashed down the cold street, past the abandoned homes in the development, leaving behind the orange, two-story home to its corner of solitude.

He hoped it wouldn’t be the last time he would lock that door.

Screams and screeches penetrated the red skies above the City of Palm.  The sounds of agonizing pain echoed throughout empty and destroyed buildings, the roads stained with the tears of the dead and dying.  It hurt him so much to listen to all of that, not being able to help any of them.  He could only run by the rubble as fast as he could.  If he stopped the root of the problem, they wouldn’t have to suffer anymore, and help could reach them faster.  It was the only way…

It was unfortunate that there wasn’t too much of an alternate way of travel for help to arrive, but after the last incident with the flying Kesseu… when they were some of the only vehicles that weren’t supposed to fly…  it was best left that every ride was disabled.  He wasn’t sure what would be able to make it past the killer aim of Ikari’s marksmen or be able to get under sneakily without tripping her Geo-Detection system.  And when Roben had the ground… there was absolutely nothing they could do to get to these people.

The more he ran, the more upset he became.  The smoke and fire in the sky had not yet been extinguished from yesterday, and the rising temperature, though it did nothing to him, was scorching the ground, burning and charring the flesh, fur and feathers of others.  Seeing this, made him run faster.  He had to stop them.  They were destroying everyone and everything in all of Tropic…

…for reasons he had not even known…

Four hours later, Wrath had finally arrived at the edge of the state of Grapelina.  The state was normally heavily populated, mostly by the wealthy, famous, or artistic-minded individuals.  Certainly no place for Wrath or his family.  However, one thing kept them coming back to the state, again and again.  It was none other than their job.  The Kaos family, composed of Wrath, his parents, his aunt, uncle and cousins, were all heavily involved with the government at some point in their lives, mainly due to the reality that his mother and aunt were internationally appointed superheroes at a young age.  They were allegedly prodigies, powerhouses and unstoppable, only until as recently as a decade ago.  From that point on, for some reason, they had lost a lot of their power and became easier to take down by their foes.

At one point, Wrath had figured that he was the cause of that epic decline in power.  But that seemed ridiculous…

As he recalled the way to the utterly decimated Gray Residence, the Capital building for the entire country of Cornucopia, he slowed his pace.  He had a feeling that someone would come to meet him there, so he had to conserve as much energy as possible, but the more he slowed down, the more tired he became.

“Stupid sleep… why wasn’t I programmed with something that didn’t require me to get any…?” he pondered aloud to himself, his eyelids lowering more and more frequently.  He stopped moving at last, hung his head low and loosened his joints… Wrath couldn’t help but drift off.  He was only 13.

“Hmm hmm hmm hmm, sounds like you need a better alarm clock, kiddo,” a voice spoke up from behind, suddenly awakening the long eared hedgehog.  “Or maybe the dying screams of mercy at keeping you up at night?”

When Wrath spun around to see who it was, he was hardly surprised, but nearly tripped over his own shoes in the process.  His brown eyes glared intently at the 16-foot mechanical monstrosity that loomed over his tiny body.  The plexiglass casing for the cockpit slowly began to lift open, revealing who he had suspected much more clearly.

“L-Like you can talk!  I doubt you’re getting any more sleep than I am, Ikari,” he growled, backing up, further and further away from the female hedgehog inside of the large bipedal mecha she piloted.  “Too much to destroy, so little time, right?”

The colors on the machine were a basic black, silver and dark shade of purple, but a bright green glow emitted from nearly every crevasse and joint in the thing.  Plasma energy, fused with Chemical Chaos; Ikari had always used this as her weapons’ fuel source, especially with her providing extra power through her own life energy the longer she was in there.  This time she was dressed like a Tropican astronaut, wearing the full white and metallic bodysuit, minus the helmet.  Her ragged brown hair and tan fur was exposed, her electric green eyes flickering with energy.  A sleazy grin dominated her cheeks, opening up for a laugh before speaking again.

“Heheheh, if only you knew, Wrath,” she said in almost a whispery tone, her hands letting go of the control levers to cushion her resting head.  “So, where’s your idiot slave?”

“He’s not my slave, and he’s not stupid!” Wrath snapped, flames wisping out of his mouth with every other syllable.

“The fact that you knew who I was talking about kinda solidifies that’s what you think of him,” she chuckled, lowering her eyelids tauntingly.  Wrath only got increasingly furious.

“Then where’s the dumb glob that you’re so-called ‘partners’ with?!” he yelled at her, desperate for a decent comeback.  She then tilted back her head to think for a moment, rolling it back forward to give him her answer.

“Funny, I think he’s currently murdering Kane right now,” she stated nonchalantly.  Wrath’s eyes widened in shock, his hands beginning to tremble and his knees visibly shaking.  “I guess that makes me…”

The brown hedgehog suddenly slammed her body back into her seat, quickly closed the cockpit with the flick of tiny switch and laughed as she regained control of her machine.  Gears whirred and churned, clicking and clacking about as the bipedal bot charged forward at a scared-stiff Wrath.  One of its arms spun around rapidly, spinning fast on its joint axis before its “hand” collided with the hedgehog, sending him flying off to the right and into a wall of a destroyed building.

“A DISTRACTION!  HAHAHAHAAHAHAHAA!!”

Wrath’s back seared with immense pain as he hit the wall, instantly rebounding him back onto the concrete ground.  He tried his hardest to shake himself out of it - after all, if it weren’t for his sturdy endoskeleton, that attack probably would have broken his spine and killed him.  But how would he wear such a strong mechanism like that down without wasting time?!  He had to find Kane - regardless if she was lying to him or not!

Instead of fighting back like he wanted to, he stumbled to his feet and decided to run forward and onward, panting and hurting each step of the way.  Ikari wasn’t finished with him yet, however; the machine she drove ran after him, stomping and creating small craters in the street behind her.  She was slower, but each rattle of the ground knocked Wrath a little more off balance each time, practically replicating minor earthquakes with this 4 ton metal monster.  He pushed on, trying to go faster and faster, her insane laughter resonating within his eardrums similar to the explosions of yesterday...

…and every day…

…and every day after today…

…and forever more…until he finally put a stop to this.

PART 1 ENDS HERE, STAY TUNED FOR PART 2

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Re: Chemical Chaos

Post by RKRobot on 12/22/2014, 1:14 pm

Wrath leapt forward, channeled all of his energy from his body to his feet, and just before hitting the ground again, ignited the rockets in the bottoms of his special shoes and shot forward.  He was now going triple the speed he was doing on foot.  It wasn’t his maximum speed, but just enough to outrun Ikari, who had slowed to a halt upon realizing she couldn’t catch him.  Inside the cockpit of her mechanism, she began laughing to herself.

“I told Roben I could drain his energy fast enough… I just hope he actually found that pathetic reptile, first.”

The flames devoured Wrath’s feet in a matter of minutes, the smell of smoke soon to follow.  He desperately tried to maintain his speed, even increasing his altitude a few feet to dodge fallen debris and destroyed chunks of road in his way.  Thankfully, this took some of the pressure off his legs, but his feet literally burned with stinging pulses of pain, making him wince with each passing moment.  Wrath had to find Kane fast, dead or alive.

Unless Ikari was lying again.

Sputters and sparks coming from the channels in his shoes caused Wrath to fall back down to the surface, the force of all five feet hitting him like a ton of bricks as he collided with the concrete, face first.  No matter how hard he tried, groaning and clawing at the air to find the strength to get back up, he couldn’t.  He was near the edge of Grapelina - almost over the state line.  Before him was a long red and white bridge over a very wide river, its mouth leading into the Sea of Techno.  Normally, this bridge would be lit up with bright LED lights to help direct traffic and boats coming passing underneath.  It also would typically be whole - for a while, this bridge had been split in half, the half he was looking at being the remaining side.  At this point, he had passed through several cities and towns looking for his dearest friend, but if he was somehow over the bridge, there was no way for Wrath to get to him, now without anything left in him.

All around him were blown up remnants of the state line town, Sandollar City.  This location looked vacant, save for one or two crisp bodies Wrath had tried to block out of recent memory.  He figured that they were some of the first people to evacuate, as they were fairly close to the capitol, but they wouldn’t have anything once they returned home.  Where would they stay?  Could they make an exception to use the Chaos Millennium Safety Craft for all the survivors—

Oh. Wait.

Ikari destroyed that.

Unless all the world’s scientists teamed up to recreate the special Moon-sized space ship that was only used every 1,000 years in a matter of days, none of these people would have a place to rest.  Knowing that, Wrath felt it was unfair for him to rest at all, even when he knew he lacked the energy to stand.  He was surprised he was still able to breathe with what little power he had left in his body, let alone think.  Unable to do anything else but to lay on the side of the decimated road, the hedgehog shut his eyes tight and began to cry.

It seemed like hours had passed, but by the time Wrath had awoken from his short lived rest, he opened his eyes to find a humanoid figure coming his way.  It was hard to define who exactly it was behind his tear-stained eyes, but whoever it was had enough strength to lift his limp, near-lifeless body into their arms and carry them back to a Kesseu-sized flying ship.  The door slid upwards and open when they neared the ship, allowing them to enter the vessel.  When the door shut behind them, Wrath felt his body move over to what seemed to be a table, his vision and sensors still failing to pick up what it actually was he was laying on.  His arms and legs were evenly spaced out onto this table, and his face was quickly covered by a bulbous mask.  After several slow breaths, he picked up the familiar scent of special sleeping gas that lulled him back into a slumber.

“Wratka.  Wratka.  Yokouke ben wekekeo.  Prenek, nmev dounk…” a soft, older, female voice, though muffled, made it through Wrath’s internal hearing mechanisms.  He recognized this voice to be of an old family friend, stirring in his wake and wrenching his eyes open with freshly reinvigorated energy.  When he finally had his eyes open enough, he inhaled deeply and realizing the mask was off of his face, he steadily rose to a seated position.

“Monica?”

Before him was a woman who appeared to be in her early thirties with shoulder length blonde hair, some of it tied up in a bun on the back of her head.  She had a blue and white sleeveless dress on, long white gloves and boots, and a pair of gemstone earrings that shone brightly in the fluorescent lighting of the parked ship.  Her gray blue eyes flashed tears of joy before she got up from her own seat and went over to the awoken hedgehog.

“Wratka!  I’m so happy you’re alive!” she cried, wrapping her thin arms around his spines and hugging him.  He weakly tried to return the gesture before she took herself away from him, wiping the tears from her ducts.  “I’m so thankful to see you, Sky King above… what are you doing so far from Kane?  From home?”

“Kane.  You know where he is?!” he asked her, his voice shaking with worry.  She nodded gently, but bent down slightly to place her arms on his shoulders and look him in the eyes.

“He’s not far from here.  In fact, we had just finished stopping Roben in Crystal Foam, you know, the port town just over that bridge,” she confirmed, her eyes still firmly locked onto his.  “Unfortunately, when we tried to transport him to our labs, he escaped and stole a ship of his own to get back up to the Lockardson Station.”

“Lockardson, you mean your dad’s space station, right?” Wrath questioned, his eyes darting about in thought.

“That’s right.  My brother isn’t giving up by any means.  I’ve tried reason, I’ve tried physical dismantlement… I’ve even attempted to kill him myself, but I just…” she trailed off as she finally tore her gaze away from Wrath, getting up and turning herself away from the young boy.  There was an aura of regret and guilt about her when she confessed she hadn’t finished him off.  The hedgehog knew that it must have been hard for her, even though he never had any personal connection to someone like she did Roben.  He did have his mother and Kane, as well as his aunt and two younger cousins, but no one to call a brother or sister.  He tried to imagine how hard it was for her, but the more he thought about trying to be sympathetic to Roben, the more he became angry, wanting to burst out into a tirade of insults and rage about his mortal enemy.  Perhaps Monica knew this, and that is why she turned away from him, knowing he would be mad at her decision.

“What stopped Kane from- never mind,” he started, cutting himself off as he leapt down off the table.  “You may not be able to do it, but if Mom can’t, I will.”

She turned back to him with newly forming tears in her eyes, the wrinkles under her eyes and around her lips becoming more visible the harder she tried to fight it.  He could only glare at her with unmoving brown eyes.

“Are you aw-aware that your mother has left the planet?  She wanted to tell you, b-but there was no time, and your Aunt is f-far too busy in the east… D-Did you know?” she inquired, grabbing at her own neck to try to stop herself from crying.  “So, h-how will you be getting into space?”

Wrath’s eyes widened as he lurched back a little.  Why was he so surprised at this?  His mother never told him anything anyway!  Who his father was, why the war began in the first place, what really was Chemical Chaos?  All questions he demanded answers to, but never received.  Then again, she left the planet - gone from the surface.  That meant he couldn’t contact her unless he was in space, too.

Where Roben was.

Perfect.

“Monica, can this thing fly?” he yelled as he ran to the front of the ship.

She followed him weakly, responding between gasps of air, “It can, but it’s been damaged-!  Roben ran into it when he left, breaking into one of the core engines.”

As she finally caught up to sit in the driver’s seat, buckling herself in first before securing Wrath in the passenger’s spot, she turned on the machine with the press of her hand onto a sensor by the steering sticks.  This ship was custom built for her years earlier, but because of that, it was somewhat outdated and easy to break.  Even with all the modifications over the course of its lifespan, Monica’s ship needed a whole new reconstruction.  This was especially apparent by the sounds of the vessel lifting off the ground and into the air, high above most of the decimated buildings.  To Wrath, someone who was part machine, it sounded horrendously unhealthy.  He cringed when it started to pick up “speed” and soar over the filthy water and bridge, worried it would drop at any moment and kill them both.  How would this thing get him into space?!

The great Horizia Tree of Grapelina, in all of its current burnt and shredded glory, finally left the hedgehog’s sight as they entered the next state, Orangitini.  Kane was sure to be here, and now that he knew that Roben was in space, he felt relieved that the Komodo Dragon was at least safe.  That wasn’t to say that they all wouldn’t be safe for too long, considering now that the monster was up beyond the atmosphere, he could do some serious damage if he crashed what remained of the Lockardson Space Station into the side of the planet or even knock the moon, Uepiki, out of orbit.  How would he get such a power, though?  He did have the station, sure, but was that enough?

“Monica,” Wrath began softly, looking straight ahead at the continuous stream of destruction on the ground.  “Why does Roben want to do this?  What happened to make him so…”

“It was your mother, mainly.  Years ago, she and your aunt destroyed the man we called father, but as a result, nearly got herself killed,” Monica told him without hesitation.  “When he found out, he ravaged the planet for power to get back at them, allying himself with the only other person who cared as much as he did for his loss: Ikari.”

Wrath crumpled his fists further on his lap.  Again, his mother and aunt were hiding everything from him!  Before he could retort, the woman continued with a little extra information that he never expected to hear.

“Even with Ikari by his side, your parents - married at this point - were strong enough to stop them every time.  But when you were born, things began to change…” she said, trying to lead into some greater explanation.  While Wrath wanted to know more, his attention firmly focused on her, she ended the conversation abruptly, her hands flying out all over the dashboard and near her seat in preparation for landing.  The hedgehog pined to know more, but the loud whirring and crunching of the ship drowned out his thoughts and distracted him, urging him to look out the window to see what was happening.  They were landing alright, but on top of a heaping mound of rubble and pieces of road and building.  Everywhere else, from what could be seen was an even bigger mess than this particular spot, some of which contained mangled and burnt bodies of the innocent.

One man’s death lead to all of this?

Once they had left the ship in search for Kane, Monica stopped to scour every new body she hadn’t recognized from before.  She had explained further to Wrath that this was the very area that they had captured Roben, but during his escape, he cost many of the doctors, officers and volunteers their own lives to get up into space as fast as possible.  After moving on to the next town, they saw less creature remains and more barely living things trying to hide away in makeshift shelters.  Wrath tore his view from them as best as possible, wanting so badly to run ahead to where he no longer saw anything at all.

“It’s as if he has no remorse for his actions.  Transcended his previous programming of guilt and afterthought… hindsight is nothing to him,” Monica announced when they were far enough away from the living.  “He doesn’t feel pain like that.”

“He’s artificial.  Not real,” Wrath retorted, bitterly.

“You are?” she jabbed at him, referring to his interior.

“I have parents.  Birth parents.  They made me.”

“My father made him, as well.  Not from the same parts, obviously.  He created him from learning technology and intelligent space material that evolved and shapeshifted into what he is today.  You were created by mixing two things together as well, but with a third addition to keep you alive.  Your metal endoskeleton came with you, but you needed more to keep yourself alive, as well as an exoskin to protect that body.  Perhaps you’re more artificial than he is, Wrath.”

“Then why do I feel emotion and he doesn’t?  Something break inside of him?  Does he even have a soul?”

“I don’t know.  I couldn’t analyze him long enough to find out…  But, do we even have souls?  Did the Sky King create the soul first, then find a suitable body for it?  Or are we souls, not human nor Koko, not animal nor plant, given shape that pleases our mortal eyes?  Belief in something like that is tricky.  All I know for sure is, that we have to understand Roben the way you understand me; treat him like a living, breathing, sentient thing.  That’s what I’ve done for years, and its always been fine, but…”

“He snapped, I know.  I get it.  Like I said, though, if we can’t reach him, then I have to kill him.  He’s a threat to those still live, a force that not even his own family can stop.  You need someone from outside the family to identify the problem and take care of it.  Your bias will doom us all.”

PART 2 ENDS HERE, STAY TUNED FOR PART 3

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Re: Chemical Chaos

Post by RKRobot on 12/31/2014, 11:51 am

It was difficult to tell on such a cloudy day, but the sun was finally beginning to set over the horizon.  On a handheld device Monica withdrew from her pocket was a map with her current location blinking about a fourth of the way through Orangitini.  After putting it away, she looked up to find a hulking figure coming towards them.  Wrath squinted to try and get a better look before his eyes widened and he darted forward.

“Kane!  Kane!!” he screamed, the Komodo sprinting forward to meeting his dear friend half way.

Once they collided, they stuck together like velcro, Monica sighing in relief as she neared them at a much slower pace.  By the time she arrived beside them, they had parted, Wrath opened his eyes to fully view every cut, bruise, scrape and scar on the monster.  Kane himself could barely manage a smile, the hedgehog noting that a few of his teeth were missing as well.

“Wh-what happened to you?!” he gasped, covering his mouth in horror.  The dragon bowed his head lightly before speaking, his voice even raspier than before.

“I’m sure Monica’s told you.  We couldn’t keep him down, Wrath,” he reported as he wiped some dried blood from his nostrils.  “The good news is, that he hadn’t destroyed every craft we had in the process.”

“Are you serious?!  We have one more?!” Monica shouted, grabbing onto Kane’s shoulder and looking into his darkened eyes.  “Where is it?!”

“Come with me.  I’ll show you where it is,” he told her before turning around and lumbering off to their new destination.  Wrath’s teeth ground against one another each time Kane took painful step after painful step.  He was more worried about him now than he ever was before, and for the first time in his life, Kane actually looked old.

The trip to the secret underground laboratory was not in silence, the two travelers telling the reptile what happened with Ikari and crossing into the state.  Once he was updated, Kane explained that he originally wanted to send the few survivors off on this ship, but resisted after determining that Roben or Ikari could try to shoot them down.  Monica expressed her gratitude for his actions, mentioning that her ship wouldn’t have nearly enough power to run through the atmosphere, let alone propel itself in space.  Kane chuckled at this, extremely glad he told those survivors to take the underground train instead.

“Here we are,” Kane sighed, stepping aside to introduce Wrath and Monica to the white and black streamlined craft he reserved for their travels.  It was much bigger and newer looking compared to the human woman’s ship, so it appeared to be much more suitable for such a trip.

“It looks like it could make it,” Wrath added, moving closer to it to touch the tip of its retracted wings.  “Do you think you could drive it, Monica?”

“If its anything like what I know, then its certainly possible,” she stated before turning to Kane, who’s claws were now wiping off a layer of perspiration.  “I don’t want you to come with us.  You look terrible and I don’t want you in any worse of a condition…”

He stretched out his other arm to her and wrapped his hand around the back of her head.  “Forgetful Monica… I’ve survived more than any mortal had before me.  I am not unlike Roben or Setheus.”

She gently touched his hand with hers, closing her eyes and let her cheek rest against his palm before letting go.  She would never forgive Roben for what he’d done, but if he killed Kane, she would personally administer the final blow.

With all three of them loaded into the ship, Kane took control for a moment to open the roof and direct the craft to its launching pad on the surface.  It took much longer than any of them expected to move the large mechanism to the location, specifically because of the outrageous amounts of debris and clutter than blockaded most of the road.  However, after 2 hours of ground travel and attaching the ship to the vertical launcher, Kane instructed Monica on what to do once they lifted off.  She situated her seat and configured her controls while Kane shifted into the passenger’s chair and Wrath took place in a spot behind Monica.  He bound his hands together, interlocking them with his fingers and closed his eyes, wishing hard that they all had enough strength to carry this out.

The rumbling began easily, Monica steadying her grasp on the steering sticks with one hand and hitting buttons and levers in time with Kane’s countdowns.  The shaking soon followed, the rocket tilting up as far as 100 degrees towards the sky, pressing everyone back in their seats.  At last, the lift off took place, the pressure great, but Monica’s will was strong enough to pursue the action.  She carried the trio high into the sky, continuing to tweak settings and shift levers with the increasing altitude.  Wrath could feel the skin and fur on his body peel back, from intensity, revealing shining metal underneath his faux fur suit by his ears and nose.  For what seemed like an eternity later, Monica screeched something, and the final jolt of the ship sent them careening above Tropic’s atmosphere.

They made it.

Now in space, Monica released her hands from the sticks, shaking them out rapidly to relieve her appendages from pain.  Kane too had to adjust parts of his face, blinking rapidly to regain moisture in his eyes and cracking a few joints in his face and arms to get himself going again.  Wrath could also affix his skin to normalcy, detaching himself from under his seat belt and letting his body float upward in the zero gravity present on board.  It felt so unreal to him, to be up in space like this without anything more than a mission to complete.  Why was it that he could do this without complications?  Why did so many others have to wear suits and take such insane amounts of precautions?  Did it have anything to do with his body composition?  As if he was reading his mind, Kane, too had relinquished his seat and floated towards Wrath with words of advice for the young hedgehog.

“I know that you’ve never been to space before until this point, but I wanted to explain something to you,” he initiated softly.  “You’re aware your body contains Chemical Chaos, right?”

“Is that the reason I can do all this without worry?” the hedgehog asked with genuine curiosity.

“Unsurprisingly.  This Chemical is powerful, and while most Tropicans have it due to natural planetary radiation, you were born with such an incredible concentration that you have enough power to survive in harsh conditions.  On top of this, you are Pyrokinetic, a fire power that only a few have successfully managed to command like a thermometer; not to mention, your robotic interior prevents any internal damages.  Essentially, with Chemical Chaos, your metallic body and Pyrokinesis in your control, you can survive in the vacuum of space with no immediate issues.  Do you understand?”

“Yeah… I think so.  It almost sounds like I was meant for space travel…” he replied, his voice smooth and dripping with wonder.  He wished he could know more as he looked outside of the ship’s window, more about Chemical Chaos and what he could really do with it.  At this moment, right now, staring at the distant stars, gleaming with hot plasma and energy, dust swirling around them endlessly, orbiting forever with their planets and asteroids by their side… Wrath was somehow at peace.

“Mhek zteho zodakonoa unzok fikeb kae.  Kae cerk opkoe ki,” he whispered to himself as Kane turned away to prepare alongside Monica.

In similar ways, both the human girl and the Komodo Dragon were able to take the vacuum of space, but to a lesser extent.  As for Monica, she could last roughly 10 minutes before needing oxygen, while Kane could carry about an hour’s time.  This was all due to intense amounts of Chemical Chaos exposure back when they lived with Monica’s father.  As powerful as the Chemical was, even creatures created from its very composition like Roben couldn’t last much longer than a few hours in the great unpredictable vastness.  When Wrath was made aware of this after relaxing a little while longer, he decided that his approach would be to take out Roben as fast as possible.  If somehow he could reason with him, it would be better, but the way things were looking, it would resort to violence quickly.  If anything were on Wrath’s side now, it would have to be speed above all else.

After Monica had driven close enough to the partially destroyed Lockardson Space Station - a pillar of a construction, twin oscillating bells at each end, all surrounded by two layers of spinning rings, one going clockwise, the other counterclockwise - she targeted Roben’s ship with her dashboard radar.  As predicted, it was abandoned, but she was able to trace the life form’s energy inside the station.  Apparently, he was with another for a short time, before the second signal vanished.  Kane spoke up his speculations.

“I’m guessing that was his interstellar cohort.  We’ve gotten a signal from that one several times before, but…”

“His usefulness has run out,” Monica finished solemnly.  “As much as we tried to figure out about that second figure, we never fully understood why he needed anyone but himself or Ikari.”

“Who else would make sure no one would touch the station but those two?”  Wrath snorted, carefully watching Roben’s dot move about the station before heading for the exit.  “He’s on the move.  I have to get out now, so I can surprise him.”

With long, strong embraces at his leave, Wrath departed the ship, and using the rockets in his feet, flew himself off into space.  Closer and closer he came towards the station, getting a real feel for just how towering such magnificent craft it was.  The way it spun was hypnotizing, magnetizing his eyes to its twirling rings and end pieces.  As it floated, he saw the damaged parts to the structure, the gaping holes in the sides, particularly in the lower half, were closed off from the inside.  Clearly Roben had been up here multiple times to do those repairs, or maybe his third mysterious helper completed that task for him?  Wrath wanted so badly to go up to it, to see what it was like inside, but if he made it through this, he would reward himself with such a trip.

As he jet his feet back and forth until he was as still as he was going to get in space, he shut off his rockets away from the station.  As he was looking around for Roben, knowing that he had probably left by now, he looked down beneath him and gasped.

Tropic, even after suffering through so much, had never looked more beautiful from this view.

“I’ve never seen anything like it,” Wrath said to himself.  “This is… my home… I live here.  My family, my friends… We all live here together.”

“That we do.”

A slimy voice echoed through Wrath’s ears, sending chills up the boy’s spine.  Long, light blue, translucent tentacles slowly began to wrap around his torso, practically freezing the hedgehog in place upon their touch.  A disgusting, horse laugh cackled softly behind him, as Wrath began to turn his head.  His eyes met a tall gelatinous monstrosity wearing a still, purple cape that coned outward behind its head; the end of its body spread into the two tentacles that enveloped the hedgehog’s body and upper legs, while its arms ended in enormous crustacean claws with a metal casing.  Inside this gelatin being was a clearly visible endoskeleton that was made to look like a rib cage and a spinal cord leading up to a “brain” in the head.  Glowing deep blue-green eyes relaxed above a white, translucent grin, mimicking teeth in a skull.  This eerie body belonged to none other than Roben, the very creature that had started this entire thing.

“I’m quite glad you had that radio installed in your hearing system.  Now, I can tell you why I’m glad you’re here,” he said to Wrath, his tone riddled with confidence.

PART 3 ENDS HERE, STAY TUNED FOR PART 4
AND I'M SORRY ITS SO LONG I REALLY DON'T WANT THIS TO HAPPEN AGAIN

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Re: Chemical Chaos

Post by RKRobot on 12/31/2014, 11:59 am

“I came to talk to you, not to hear stories,” the hedgehog growled, trying to turn the rest of his body around, annoyed that he didn’t try to escape Roben’s grasp.

“About?”

“Monica didn’t kill you when she easily could have, you know.  Kane, too.  You’re lucky you’ve made it this far.  Come back down to the planet, and you can live another seventy years in prison before the Chaos Millennium takes you away,” he threatened, curling his fists and bending his ears back.

“You’re not a very good negotiator, Wrath.  In fact, you’re downright terrible.  Would you say this to someone who’s about to jump off a bridge?  Would you consider someone ‘unfair’ if they said this to you in a weak state of mind?” Roben shrugged, the same sick smile widening on his face.

“‘Weak state of mind?’  Come ON!  All because my mom and aunt killed your ‘Master’ - he’s not even your father!  You’re just a thing - a thing that I consider a threat to the rest of the world if you stayed alive any longer!” Wrath shouted, fire spitting from his mouth and hands trying to wrench off the tentacles.

Roben’s expression promptly changed, narrowing his eyes and snarling at the boy.  In another instant, he shot forward and opened his giant claws, clenching the top and bottom of Wrath’s head tightly.  He moved his face closer to the hedgehog’s as his tentacles bound Wrath’s legs together.  Another two tentacles had rose up from the first two and collected his arms, strapping them to his sides.  Wrath was now fully trapped by the artificially created being, nothing more to do than to squirm.

“You call me such names… I cannot be defined by simple terms, yes, but I do exist.  I am still alive and can take life away,” he said in whisper, squeezing Wrath’s head a little as he finished his statement.  “Hmmhmmhmm… You mock me for having an emotion towards something, but let’s see just how much damage this “thing” can cause you…”

Releasing the top claw from the mammal’s head, Roben lifted it up high, stretching his arm far beyond its typical length.  Wrath looked up as he saw it transform into a strange, glowing red beacon.  It pulsated at an even pace, shining brightly in the dark backdrop of space.

“What are you doing?!” Wrath yelled at him, Roben merely blinking in response.  “Answer me!”

Two minutes passed before Monica and Kane had finally gotten their ship to run again, following the radiation trail Wrath had left behind.  As they propelled themselves forward, they devised a plan of attack, having listened to everything that happened after connecting to both Wrath and Roben’s internal radios.

“I’ll get out to fight him, but if he comes after the ship, you have to run.  You can’t stay constrained to the seat,” Kane huffed, gearing up by clipping a special add on to his boots that allowed him to rocket through the vacuum the same way Wrath did.  Monica too put these on, listening to the advice given to her, but having a few words of her own.

“Fine, but I can’t guarantee us all our lives if the ship is, indeed, destroyed and we somehow survive,” she responded, taking back the steering controls once more.  “There’s not that much air to breathe in Dad’s station, left.”

“That’s why we have to take him out now.  As much of a brother he is to us, I can’t…” Kane began, hesitating a little before finishing, then hanging his head somewhat. “I can’t let him kill her son…”

Monica looked over at him quickly as he stood up from his seat and strode over to the door of the ship.  She sighed lightly before replying, “He’s not a typical child, clearly, but as he struggles with how I could possibly understand Roben… I have a hard time understanding how you’ve come to love him so much more than us.  Is it because he’s her son?”

Kane’s head slowly raised, still not facing Monica, as she had gone back to paying attention to the trail.  He opened up his gloved palm and pressed it against the ship’s wall, staring into it to concentrate on his answer.  “I don’t know myself, Monica.  I could give you many reasons, but none of them feel like the right answer.  If it is because it’s Rocky’s boy, then that would only count for one small part of the whole thing.”

“Maybe I do understand it a little more, then,” she said, nodding slightly along with his closing words.  “When you can’t place a particular feeling exactly, but know a few things that may have caused it… I think that’s what Roben is going through now, too.”

Wrath finally had broken his arms free from Roben’s suffocating embrace, the gelatinous life form letting his second claw go from the hedgehog’s chin and shape shifting it into a triangular shield.  Stretching his body away from Wrath’s as he did this, the boy collected fire into his palms and one by one, began throwing them rapidly.  Each time, the fire collided against the shield or missed Roben entirely.  Noticing this, Wrath changed up strategies and heated up his open hands again, this time, pressing them down onto the remaining tentacles Roben had wrapped around his body.  The artificial being screamed in pain and immediately let go, pushing Wrath backward into a tumble.  Reorienting himself using his rockets, the hedgehog charged forward, both fists still blazing.  Roben used his shield to slam Wrath back again, hitting the mammal hard like it was more solid than gel.  Nothing more would have any affect on him if he kept this up, and Wrath was running out of ideas.

He looked back up to Roben’s beacon, thinking that if he hit it, it would break and whatever he was signaling would no longer come.  Launching himself up to his outstretched arm warranted a following by Roben’s reformed tentacles, trying to grab Wrath back down.  The hedgehog exerted himself a little more to speed up and escape the appendages, but once he was at the top, the beacon had stopped blinking and changed back into a claw, snapping at Wrath.  Still going through with his plan, the boy grabbed its wrist after a swift dodge and poured as much fire as he could onto it as possible.  Roben cried out in agony as his claw was melted clean off its root, quickly deforming into a lifeless blob of goo.  Wrath continued to evade the tentacles, as Roben brought down his injured arm and held it with his other, but he shouted something that froze the hedgehog in his tracks for a moment.

“Aaaugh!!  It-It didn’t matter anyway!!  Its still coming this way, and you have nothing to stop it with!!”

“What’s coming?!  What did you signal, Roben?!” Wrath screeched from high above, the appendages no longer interested in following up to his height.  Before he could receive an answer, though, Wrath only needed to turn around to find his answer.

In the distance was a fast moving asteroid, roughly the size of the Tropican moon.  As it hurtled towards them, Wrath’s ears dropped down below his spines, eyes wide with fear and Roben laughed, screamed and cheered in his victory.  This asteroid was so massive that it crushed two others in its path, sending their metal and mineral chunks off in various directions.  How did he get so powerful as to summon a gargantuan hunk of space rock like this?!

Wrath shot back down to Roben, still cackling his head off, and tried to throw every punch, kick, and fireball he had.  Landing and missing hits, the artificial monster maddeningly kept laughing at all attempts to stop him.

“YOU CAN’T DO ANYTHING ANYMORE, WRATH.  WE’RE ALL GOING TO GO OUT WITH A BIG-PLANET-DESTROYING BANG!  HAHAHAHEEEHEHEHEHEHAHAHA!”

From inside their ship, Monica and Kane had picked up the pace and arrived close enough to allow Kane to open the door and fly out.  Before doing so, however, he took one last look out the window to make sure it was alright to go; what he saw shooting past some distance away caused him to cry out to Monica:

“She’s here!”

A silver streak of light, glittering through space like a comet’s tail, flew by at such an incredible speed that when Monica went to look, she had just missed it.  As the streak began to slow its pace as it neared Wrath and Roben, the figure could become more visible to the naked eye.  Its body was thick and rounded, with muscular legs and arms, all wrapped in silver streamlined armor.  Its hair was lengthy, brown, and voluminous, adorned with pink chemicals showing through the roots.  The little skin that was exposed displayed black metallic streaks that connected to the center of the body, and its eyes were glowing with red hot fury.

By the time Roben had noticed Tropican Superhero Roqueta Kaos coming for him, he had already been blasted far back into the Lockardson Station from a single, solitary punch.  With Roben out of the way for now, the silver aura that was Roqueta drifted over to the tired and tearful hedgehog.  As Wrath looked her over, in awe of her appearance before him, he felt all of his words fail him.  Every question, statement, all of it was useless to him now; he couldn’t manage to say anything at all.  All he could do was cry.

Roqueta moved closer to him, her eyes too, filled with tears.  Upon touching the side of his face with her hand, Wrath instantly fell forward into her, holding onto his dear, beloved mother tightly.  She embraced him in return, but tore him away from her after a few moments so she could look him in the eyes.

“I have so much I want to tell you, my baby,” she confessed, her voice hushed, but silky.  “Let me begin with announcing my pride for your actions… Everything you have ever done, baby, I’ve always been proud of you… but I cannot find as much pride in myself for anything I have done.”

“That’s not true, Mom!” Wrath screamed at her.  “You’ve done everything in your power to keep this world safe!  You have to be proud of your heroism!!  Right?!”

Roqueta’s lips curled into a tiny smile.  “As a mother, I regret my heroism.  There is no pride in knowing you’ve lied to your son to keep him safe, kept secrets from him for nearly all his life, told him to live his life in fear and worry rather than to trust and love… there is no pride that I have gained in my motherhood.  Only regret.”

“I don’t ask for your forgiveness in this hour,” she began, kneeling down before him, her hands clasped together.  “But for you to be strong for me… My only wish now, is that you live long enough to learn to love from those more worthy than I am.”

Slowly, she got up from her position, the flaming silver aura around her body still going strong.  Wrath’s eyes trembled with fear as she again, reached out to him and pulled him towards her.  If the vacuum of space would allow it, his tears would flow beyond control.  In his speechlessness, his mind spun with questions, afraid to ask for answers.  His body became limp in her arms, cherishing this moment.

He knew exactly what she was going to do… but why?!

“Mom… I don’t want to be taught by anyone else…” he begged, grabbing onto her armored body.  “I don’t want to lose anyone else… Please, Mom…”

As he finished, he felt an immense rush of power begin to seep through his skin and into his very endoskeleton.  It was warm, like an internal embrace, but also paralyzing; its energy locked the hedgehog’s joints completely, freezing him in place.  As Wrath was unable to move, he saw his mother lift herself from his grasp and float backward.  She then turned to her right, witnessing Kane and Monica come forward in the ship.

On the inside of the craft, Monica’s watering eyes drenched her face, Kane not doing too well of a job fighting his own tears back.  As Roqueta locked eyes with them, she nodded firmly as if there was something that had been predetermined.  Quickly, Kane left his seat and hurried out of the vehicle, kicking on the supplemental jets to his boots.  He rushed as fast as he could to meet with her one last time, but she had fled the area for the direction of the asteroid.

No matter how hard he tried to scream for her, the emptiness of space wouldn’t let his words through.  Finally, when she was quite a distance away from the three, Wrath had unfrozen from his still state.  Instantly, he tried to go after her, but was captured by Kane.  He held onto the squirming and screaming boy as much as he could, trying to propel them both backwards to the ship by using the rockets on his boots.  Wrath attempted to revert this by using his own rockets, but Kane promptly bound his legs together and forced them to go his direction.  The hedgehog continued to struggle, biting and punching as much as he could to get away, but Kane wouldn’t budge for anything.

There was nothing he could do to stop her.

PART 4 ENDS HERE, STAY TUNED FOR THE FINAL PART OF CHAPTER 2

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Re: Chemical Chaos

Post by RKRobot on 2/14/2015, 8:54 am

As the asteroid neared closer and closer to the planet, tumbling and turning away in space, everyone still alive on the planet seemed to tremble in fear; from their view, a bright red and white light grew larger and larger in the evening sky.  For those who still carried hope, however, they saw a second light headed straight for the first.

Even after Roben’s signal had long since diminished, its momentum was too great for it to stop now.  It would take everything Roqueta had to prevent it from crashing into the world she knew as her home.  As she slowed her pace to build up energy in her body, and eventually stopping far in front of the careening space rock, she outstretched her arms and legs as far apart as she could manage.  Her shining aura expanded and crackled as green light emanated from her hands and feet.  The fleshy pink skin she wore then started to melt off of her body, revealing black and silver metal underneath.  Her eyes digitized into black sclera and red pupils, while her hair twisted and flicked into a high ponytail on her head.  Her glittering garb was pushed off of her body by the red and gold armor underneath, pointing outward like opposing coattails.  Black metal gloves and boots uprooted from her hands and feet, and after bringing both of her hands together to touch her chest, a bright green luminescent gem appeared on her torso.

With Metal Roqueta completing her transformation, she had shed her silver flaming aura for a vibrant green one.  In the sixty seconds she had before the asteroid would enter the Tropican atmosphere, the superhero closed her eyes, thrust her arms forward with open palms.

One final pair of words were all that needed to be uttered as she allowed the space rock to touch her hands.

“Chaos Control—“

Wrath stood horrified as the now flaming ball of minerals collided with his mother, rupturing into an incredible explosion before an engulfing flash of white light pierced through space and time.

When the light faded, she was gone.

Everything was gone.  There wasn’t a single trace of the asteroid, nor his mother ever being there.  No trace, but the mere memory for those unfortunate enough to witness it.

All at once, Wrath felt nothing and everything at the same time.  Even though no one would hear him, the boy screamed with every ounce of his being; his body shook, his eyes shut tight and adrenaline pumping higher than ever.  His body began to heat up in Kane’s arms, forcing him to let go of the burning hedgehog.  Steaming from every orifice until he too carried a white hot aura, Wrath unknowingly also began to melt off his fur, skin and anything else that wasn’t metallic.  His eyes finally melted themselves open, his true sclera revealing to be dark and digital with brown pupils, much like his mother’s.  He, too, had transformed into something different - something unfamiliar to him.

When his scream had finally subsided, he felt his hands automatically generate their own fire, wisping about his visibly jointed fingers freely.  He looked down at them, surprised at what he was seeing.

“What’s going on?!  Why am I like this?!” he shouted, turning to Kane with fear in his computerized eyes.  The Komodo only shook his head and drifted backward in horror at what he saw; he couldn’t understand what he was saying, but he also knew he couldn’t touch Wrath with that temperature!

Inside the ship, between instances of bawling, Monica had finally calculated Wrath’s temperature thanks to the information she was given from the radar: 2400º Farenheit?!  That was as hot as magma on the surface of Tropic!  How could he have reached such a temperature??  Was it his surroundings fueling it, or his own power manifesting due to rage?!  Finally having the chance to speak to Wrath after clearing up most of her tears, she pressed down a button that allowed her to communicate with him over radio.

“Wrath!!  You can’t touch us!!  You’re-you’re magma-hot!!”

As surprised as he was to get a signal while still in this “form”, he was even more shocked to hear what Monica had to say; magma?!  Had his Pyrokinesis further evolved while he was in space?!  Of all the questions he had now, one stuck out the more he thought about it: how does he get out of this state?

Looking around frantically for anything to “put him out”, he turned back to Kane for ideas.  The Dragon’s face instantly changed from shock to anger, as he pointed behind Wrath.  The metal hedgehog rotated his view to see a weakened Roben leaving the crumbling space station.

It was him who killed his mother!

In no time at all, Wrath realized that he couldn’t waste this newfound power - he had to have his revenge!  Jetting off faster than ever before, accelerating beyond what had been defined as Mach 1, the boy rocketed straight into an unsuspecting Roben.  A splash of molten fire exploded upon impact, burning and liquifying all parts of the artificial being it touched, including most of his body and both of his arms.  As Wrath continued to carry Roben above the atmosphere, aiming to eradicate him by the time he was done circling the planet, the murderer screamed his final words as he melted away in the hedgehog’s grasp.

“YOU REALIZE THAT WHAT I’VE DONE TO YOU IS NOTHING TO WHAT YOU’VE DONE TO ME!!  YOUR FAMILY DESTROYED MINE!!  THEY TOOK MY MASTER AWAY FROM ME, MY BROTHERS AND SISTER!!  ALL SO YOU COULD LIVE YOUR LIFE OF LIES!!”

“YOU KNOW NOTHING OF MY LIFE!!”

“I KNOW EVERYTHING!  YOUR MOTHER KILLED HERSELF SO SHE WOULDN’T HAVE TO TELL YOU WHAT I’VE DONE TO HER AND YOUR FATHER!  SHE KEPT YOU FROM KNOWING HER DESTRUCTIVE REIGN OF TERROR AFTER I SLAUGHTERED HIM AND YOUR UNCLE - AND I WAS COMING FOR TORI, NEXT!”

“YOU KILLED MY FATHER?!”

“MARK MY WORDS, WRATH, IF I DIDN’T DESTROY YOUR LIFE NOW, YOU WILL DESTROY YOUR OWN, AND THE PLANET YOU CALL HOME!!”

As the screaming endoskeleton evaporated in the hedgehog’s metal hands, a horrified look took over his face.  What he learned in that very moment stuck with him until he had finally circled the entire planet, forgot to turn and smashed into the side of the Lockardson Space Station.  The entire thing quickly fell to pieces, erupting in almost every part before separating from the main unit and drifting outward to orbit.  Monica and Kane had already readied the ship, and were on their way to rescue the tormented child.

-

The sounds of muffled screeches - no, not that of misery, but of joy! - echoed through the hedgehog’s ears as he slowly came to in a familiar set of muscular arms.  A blanket had been draped over his freezing cold metallic body from what he could tell when his eyes flickered on.  It was blurry, but from what things looked like, he was wrapped up in Kane’s arms, Monica standing beside them.  Before them was an incredible amount of people; humans, Koko, Mobians and everything in between stood before the destroyed Gray Residence.  All of them were pumping their wounded limbs into the air, chanting something.  When Wrath squinted, he could see his aunt standing on top of the biggest pile of rubble before them all, conducting a speech with a megaphone.  On her left was the mangled body of Ikari, desecrated, bloody and burnt in some places.  On her right were two young blonde haired Mobian girls, both of which Wrath knew; the taller blue and green striped raccoon-hog was Arianna, and the pigtailed blue and brown raccoon-hog next to her was Jade, her younger sister.  These were his cousins; they also appeared to be crying while firmly pumping their fists into the air.

Finally, Wrath’s hearing and sight had cleared up for the most part.  Now he could understand what Aunt Tori was saying.

“We will remember this day as a gain, not a loss!  We will honor our fallen Tropican Sister by celebrating the end of tyranny, the end of an era that which was cursed by death and destruction!  We will rebuild, not on our land, for the Chaos Millennium will be upon us soon, but for the future!  We will prepare a new ship, large enough to carry us to the high heavens, safe from the annihilation of our proud Tropican kind!”

As she finished, the crowd roared.  Objects of all kinds flew into the air around them, until Wrath could no longer see.  Kane had just noticed he was awake and covered his face with his hand.  The boy was too weak to try and remove it, though he did manage to make a grunting sound while Kane turned heel and began to walk away from the noise with Monica.

-

The next time he was able to regain consciousness, Wrath was back home, at the House of Tropic and in his own bed.  Everything had been cleaned up as if nothing happened.  All of his framed photographs, his stereo system, his computer, desk and closet filled with various accessories… all of that remained.  As the hedgehog slowly, but surely got up from his comfortable mattress, he lifted a hand to his head.  It felt softer than before - furry.  Was his skin back on?  But how…?  He had burned it off, he thought.

Was it a dream?

He went cross eyed to look at his skin-covered nose.  Yes, it was back, but he didn’t know he had a second skin.  Skins for robotic people were hard to come by because there were so few robots on Tropic.  Nobody actually made them, so they were always created by his family members, who he thought had to have been busy for the past… wait, how long had he been out?

Curious, Wrath got up completely, noticing he did not have shoes or gloves on, but his exposed metal feet and hands.  Okay, that was fine, nothing unusual there.  He exited his room to go to the bathroom, a place he rarely used due to his non-water-proof interior, but he could at least look in the mirror.  Sure enough, his traditional dark blue and green skin was back on his body.

“This doesn’t feel right…” he said to himself as he headed downstairs carefully.  On the first floor, everything looked much like his room - neat and orderly as if nothing tragic happened.  He went from living room, to dining room, to kitchen until he found Arianna and Jade standing by the counters, drinking some kind of fruity beverage.

“Ari.  Jade,” Wrath uttered.  The second they noticed him, they put their drinks down and ran to hug him.  He almost got knocked back by the sheer force of them colliding against his staggering body, but he remained on his feet.  When they released him, Jade began wiping her nose on her gloves and Ari trying to compose herself through breathing.

“We’re so happy you’re up!!” she told him, emotional wavering in her voice.  “It’s been a week since you…”

“A week?!”

“Y-Yeah,” piped up Jade, her light smile flashing in and out when she spoke.  “When Mommy killed Ikari, and when you killed Roben… That’s when you fell asleep for a long time…”

“So it… it did happen…” he said solemnly, backing up into the dining room behind him and hitting against a chair.  Ari quickly pulled the chair out and Jade helped him onto the seat before he nearly collapsed to the floor.  His eyes were vacant, and he remained inside his head for a few minutes before finally asking another question.

“My Mom… your aunt… she’s gone, isn’t she?” he asked with great sadness, looking to the elder of the two sisters for confirmation.  To his dismay, she nodded and bit her lower lip.  He exhaled before picking up both of his hands and covering his face.  He couldn’t help but cry, just like he did the last time he saw her - the only thing different this time, was that the tears were allowed to become puddles on the wooden flooring.

For the second time in his life, he had truly felt alone.

-

Two days felt like two months to him after his week long slumber.  Could time possibly pass any slower?  He continued to stare at the clock on the wall rather than eat his cold plate of food, wishing the bigger numbers would come sooner, then start all over again.

What remained of his family attended this dinner, and the dinner before it; Kane sat to his left, Aunt Tori in front of him and her daughters to his right.  It was quiet until Kane caught Wrath staring at the time telling machine.

“A watched clock never moves, or whatever that phrase is…” he said, chomping on the rest of his head of broccoli.  “I’m pretty sure I told you that yesterday, too.”

“Mm.”

The younger Tropican Sister looked up at Wrath before speaking, “Hey, you wanna go get dessert with me after this?  We can pick out whatever you want?”

“Mm.”

“Mom, I thought I was going with you today…” Jade whined, putting her napkin down on her empty plate.

“I just thought maybe Wrath and I could do something together.  Tomorrow you, your sister and I can go get snacks, okay?” the older blonde responded, her voice very calm and relaxed, much different compared to when she was rioting with that crowd.  As Jade conceded to her mother’s orders, she got up off her chair and went to put her plate in the sink.  Meanwhile, Arianna was still chewing on some lettuce she plucked from Wrath’s untouched plate, sharing his uneaten food with the still hungry Komodo.  Tori finally got out of her seat and told her older daughter to help Kane clean up as she headed over to Wrath.  Standing in front of his view so she could snap him out of his trance, she pulled him up by his gloved hands and dragged him out the front door of the House.

As they walked outside and down the sidewalk to the city, a cool gust of wind frazzled Wrath’s white chest hair, forcing him to react and straighten it out.  Tori merely sighed and shook her head at his scrambling to get it perfect.

“It’s not going to be perfect, you know.  ‘Specially after a gust like that.”

“Not if it make it perfect.”

“See, you just can’t.  That’s the thing; what if it happens again and it messes it up beyond just straightening it out with your hands?  You gonna use equipment, like a fancy comb or something to make it better?”

By now they were close to their destination, a food store at the edge of the City of Palm.  Even though Tori had previously proposed that everyone left alive should be focusing their attention on building a space ship, not everyone had that capability.  However, it got every scientist to work harder than before.  Everyone else had picked up what jobs they could in order to buy food, supplies and reconstruct their homes for their families; the good part was that most of their tax money went to those hardworking scientists.  They were giving it their all in this time of need and Tori did her part by donating her fortune to the poor, including her house.  She and the girls were fine living with Wrath and Kane, anyway.

“Obviously.  You own an entire chain based around beauty.  I’ll just ask you for something.”

“And in the event that doesn’t do a thing to help it, what happens next?”

Tori became more and more frustrated by the time they entered the store and had walked down an isle with no one else in it.  Wrath did as well; he had thrown down his hands in a fit of rage, no longer messing with his fur.  Apparently, it was Tori who had made it for him in the event that he did burn it off.  Sort of like an emergency back up.

“Then I give up.”

“That’s quitter talk, now.  You can’t just make due with what you had the first time?  You can’t just deal with it?”

“No!  If I can change it, why should I put up with it?!” Wrath accidentally shouted, though his face reflected no remorse.  When someone who worked at the store peered down the isle, Tori simply looked at them, waved her hand, and they took off.  She turned back to her nephew and bent down to his level.  As short as she was, he was still smaller than her.

“…When I lost your uncle, I was devastated.  Nothing could change how I felt, and I became cruel and heartless, feeling like I should take others lives to fill the gap…  I was so… so upset at myself for letting it happen.  Even though it was his decision to go and help your father… I was a wreck…” she paused, trying not to tear up herself.  Her body began to magnetize, her electric-blonde hair standing slightly on end, which she could not control right now.

“Your mother, however, she actually went out and did what I merely fantasized… There was a massive cover-up after she offed those 13 people that were minutely involved, mostly because she threatened those who cleaned up after her with the same fate.  Her bloodlust seemed to know no end, but thankfully her rage subsided…” she choked out, a few sparks flickering out from the split ends of her hair and onto the ground, where it was absorbed.

“I tried to get her to stop earlier, because seeing the destruction from another view scared me.  ‘That could have been me,’ I said to myself.  From that moment on, I wanted to help her, myself and the girls overcome it all.  I wanted us all to move on.  Unfortunately, that became one of the biggest secrets she kept from you…”

“Why didn’t you tell me?” he whispered hoarsely, holding back his tears.

“It was likely that you would have done the same thing.  The two of you would have been unstoppable,” Tori shut her eyes, keeping her head upright and facing Wrath, the emotionally triggered discharging, ceasing.  “We couldn’t take that chance…”

The boy finally let his tears drip down his cheeks, glad to finally know what happened when his father disappeared years ago, but devastated that his previous perceived perfect parent was secretly a serial killer.  How wasn’t she arrested and forbidden reentrance, forever?!  How wasn’t she all of a sudden put to death for her crimes?!  There were even more questions now than before, but he was positive his aunt wouldn’t be willing to answer them all so soon after her sister’s death.

He had to wait for these answers to come to him at the right time.

Or, maybe…

Another week had gone by, but Wrath was no longer being unproductive.  Letting his incredible depression only absorb him for 13 hours instead of a full day seemed fair to him, using special programs he had downloaded into his system to help him stay afloat for the time he was awake.  While it wasn’t perfect, he had to make due, especially considering that the work he was doing wasn’t as strenuous as it could have been - Kane had helped make sure of that.

While Aunt Tori, Arianna and Jade were continuing their campaign around the rest of the world, helping to restore the balance of peace and inspiring governments to work harder for their people, Wrath and Kane were at home.  The family agreed not to let Wrath leave the House too much for fear of his impulsive actions getting out of hand, but they still needed him to be watched.  Kane easily volunteered for such a job, but found himself in the middle of a complication he really wasn’t expecting.

“Pass me the batteries, Kane.”

“Why?”

The hedgehog stopped and looked up at the Komodo with furrowed brows.  Behind him was a massive pyramid-shaped mechanism, a wide cylindrical generator, and several disconnected wires leading up to four computer hard drives.  As he sat with crossed legs on the floor, scattered parts, screws and various pieces of equipment littered the area in front of him.  Kane sat on a backless swivel-chair some distance from the hedgehog, his back leaning up against a dark table (that also carried miscellaneous tools and parts) and his arms crossed.

“Because I need them,” the boy replied matter-of-factly.  Kane merely raised his eyebrows at his words.  “So, give them to me?”

“I’m not about to give you something that I don’t approve of.  What are you building?”

Wrath was silent for a short while, looking away from his friend to think of a decent answer.  He could trust Kane with the truth, right?  He’d never rat him out to his aunt or cousins.  Would he?

“Something that’s gonna fix my mistakes.  Something that’s gonna change the future for the better!” he spoke loudly and clearly, carefully standing up.  Kane sighed, flaring his nostrils and tightening his lips.  He knew exactly what Wrath was getting at, and he didn’t like it one bit.

“You understand that time travel is not only dangerous for the traveler, but for everyone involved in the time they enter?” he growled, getting up from his tame position against the table.  He slowly moved over to the defiantly standing young hedgehog, fists balled and teeth showing, absolutely furious that Wrath was suggesting such an insane thing.  “You understand, that once you change time, you are eternally doomed to take consequence of your actions, likely to lose more than you would gain by manipulating what you want in that time period?!”

Brown eyes darted from the battery behind Kane, back to the living fossil.  A mighty clawed hand snatched up the hedgehog by the back spines, lifting him into the air and up to Kane’s eye-level.  Wrath only became more stern-looking.

“Are you stupid?” Kane asked in a low grumble, narrowing his own protruding eyes.

“I want my family back.”

“You have your family.”

“Not all of it.  If you haven’t noticed, its broken.”

“So it’s all or nothing, then.”

“Yep.”

The look that lasted between the two of them seemed eternal, but was actually no longer than a few minutes.  All of that time was not wasted, however; Kane was deep in thought of the real consequences of letting Wrath at this.  He, personally, had never time traveled before, but merely knew of the repercussions that would come about if one were to do so… only through hearsay did he “know” of such problems… and in actuality, he didn’t know of any problems at the top of his head if Wrath were to go back so far as to resurrect his mother and father, rewrite history so that dreadful and costly war never happened, made it so that his aunt and her children wouldn’t have to lose their missing family member, their fortune or home…

All of this seemed so attractive… to be happy as a family, once again…

If he had the knowledge he did now as he was back then, he would spend every waking moment with them.  Given the second chance would be…

Letting out a long exhale, Kane lowered Wrath to the floor and allowed him to walk around his massive scaley body to obtain the battery.  Carrying the device back over to his spot on the floor, Wrath stopped before beginning to work on it again.  He looked back up at Kane and smiled lightly at the face-palming reptilian.

“Don’t worry,” he said to him.  Kane’s hand dropped from his face and opened his eyes.  “I’ll bring them all back.  I’ll make things right.  I’m the son of Kaos, after all.”

CHAPTER 2 FINALLY ENDS.  STAY TUNED FOR CHAPTER 3!

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