14Thingguy2https://community.lego.com/t5/Stories-of-LEGO-UNIVERSE/The-Broken-Slave/td-p/2551215/page/11This is the sequel to The Broken Slave.
Availability: Dark Spyral can also be found here.
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Author's Notes: This is the sequel to The Broken Slave.
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Zatorak looked down into the camp. He had made quick work of the Gwersyll Symudol and the Dragons he had harnessed were now back in the northern half of Forbidden Valley, save one, who was currently next to Zatorak, crouched behind him and was waiting impatiently for his master to leap back into action.
"Patience, Madfall," said Zatorak, "I wait for the recruits."
Zatorak knew that destroying this camp would not bring an end to the Gwersyll Symudol. This was the main body, sure, but they would merely elect a new leader and continue with their ways. If the information his employer had given him was correct, the Gwersyll Symudol would call in the other bodies and then Zatorak would strike, eliminating all life. There was just one thing he was worried about.
A lieutenant had gotten in his way and Zatorak had prepared to strike him down permanently, when something stopped him. The bulky helmets that Gwersyll Symudol soldiers usually wore had been knocked off by a fire blast shot from a dragon, and Zatorak had looked at the face of his son. Zatorak stood frozen for two and a half seconds while the equally shocked lieutenant stood in shock, staring at the face of his father. Then a private had swung a club at Zatorak's back and he fell. He quickly regained his feet and ran for the cliff wall he was currently hiding behind, smashing minifigures on the way.
Zatorak was worried that he would not be ready to face his son, and would be struck down, but he hoped that Madfall would do the job for him. The beast had never let him down before.
To engage his mind in some other battle, Zatorak turned to his Paradox Shinobi gear. He had many different kinds of gear, Nexus Force, Ninjago, Pirate, cleansed Maelstrom gear, Bat Lord, he even had some gear that some Dwarves had made him when he found them in an underground mine and "asked" them to make him some.
It had powerful titanium breastplate, with a full-face helmet, and a fire-summoning mace and chain. The HUD in the helmet gave him a five-mile life form detector and the breastplate had a compact jetpack built in to the back.
A grunting sound from Madfall alerted Zatorak to a new presence in the camp below. He looked over the ridge and cursed. Power Hungry Weasel was leading five Nexus Force warriors into the camp, and they were heavily armed. He cursed again when he recognized Ace Magma Marvel, who had been Zatorak's friend, and had seen his forged death.
"This is not my day, Madfall," said Zatorak, "first my illegal son pops up, and now by best friend."
He cursed more violently when he saw his son walk up to the Nexus Force troopers and begin to talk to them.
"Now's as good a time as any," said Zatorak. He raised his Maelstrom blade and energy coursed through his body and into the sword. The blade glowed a violent purple and a ray of light shot into the sky. There was a distant roar and every Maelstrom Dragon in Forbidden Valley rushed to Zatorak. He lowered his blade and pointed it into the camp. The Dragons rushed past him and descended upon the camp.
Zatorak smiled and walked over to Madfall.
"Looks like my day is getting better," he said.
Weasel took them through the mountains and led them into a burning camp. The tents were in flaming piles and several places had been cleared out to make way to medical stations.
"It certainly looks like it was attacked by Dragons, but they usually chill out in the northern side of Forbidden Valley," said Brocktree.
"The Dragons were not alone. The black and red warrior that was with them came down from the sky and swept across the camp like a hawk," said Weasel.
"Can you describe the red and black minifigure?" asked Turtle.
"Perfectly," said Weasel, "it was a Rank Three Paradox Shinobi with both Valiants."
"A Paradox Shinobi?" asked Ace.
"Yes, a Paradox Shinobi," said Weasel, "he jumped down from that rock over there and slaughtered many of us with his Maelstrom blades."
"Have you ever seen this Shinobi before?" asked Turtle.
Weasel looked at him.
"Back in my day, I knew many Paradox Shinobi," said Weasel.
"Well, did you know this particular Shinobi?" asked Brocktree.
"No," said Weasel, "but my lieutenant does."
Weasel turned to the camp and called for his lieutenant.
"Grieves!" called Weasel, "these Gysylltiad want to know what you know about the Maelstrom monster that attacked us."
Turtle frowned and tried to remember what Gysylltiad meant in the ancient tongue. 'It either means Nexus, or pancake,' thought Turtle.
Grieves the lieutenant clambered up the rocks to where the six minifigures stood and came to attention.
"You called for me sir?" said Grieves. He was an awkward panda-style Forbidden Valley ninja with unique clothes Turtle could not name or describe.
"Yes, you claimed to have recognized the attacker, and these gentleminifigures would like to know who he was," said Weasel, "now if you'll excuse me, I'll go check the condition of the camp."
Weasel walked off in the direction of the camp, leaving Brocktree, Turtle, Rover, Ace, and Jamt2 with Grieves.
"So… what do you want to know?" asked Grieves.
"Well, first, are you quite certain about the identity of the Shinobi?" asked Rover.
"Well, uh, yes," said Grieves.
"Well, who was it?" asked Jamt2.
"Well, er, it's difficult to explain," said Grieves, "uh, oh geez, uh, have you ever heard of Zatorak?"
"Yes," said Ace, "he was a good warrior, may he rest in peace."
"Well, er," stammered Grieves, "he's still alive."
"That's impossible," said Ace, "I saw his skeleton in the gorilla caves after Roo Morgg ate him!"
"And I saw my father when he almost sliced off my head!" Grieves said indignantly, then he held his hand over his mouth in horror.
There was seven seconds of silence.
"Your father?" Ace said finally.
"Er… um… uh…" but Grieves never got to finish stuttering.
A beam of purple light shot up into the sky and then pointed down into the camp. There was an ear-splitting roar and fifty-six Dragons swooped in upon the camp. A Dragon looked their way and flew towards them. They all started shooting at the giant monster but to no avail. The monster was getting closer but they couldn't stop it. Then a silver blade flew in the direction of the Dragon and penetrated its heart.
Rover had thrown Hesevalintes at the Dragon and it struck the tiny weaker spot in the armor, the spot that was were all Dragon killers aimed for, bringing down the Dragon.
The Dragon hit the ground and the fire chambers inside the Dragon's heart expanded, causing the Dragon to blow up in a fiery blaze. The fire died down and Rover was seen in the middle of the ash with Hesevalintes back in his hand.
"Now that's how you do it," said Rover.
Brocktree looked incredibly like Roo Morgg, standing there with his jaw hanging open, while the sounds of battle echoed around him.
"How did you do that?" asked Brocktree.
Rover shrugged his shoulders.
"Practice," he said simply.
Another beam of light shot into the sky and a legion of Dark Ronin came pounding over the ridge.
"This is it!" said Ace, and ran into the hoard of Dark Ronin as a whirlwind of lightning.
Turtle took out the staff Vanda Darkflame had made for him. He couldn't harness the Maelstrom-Imagination lightning he could before, but he could still shoot regular lightning, and besides, it was a long and elegant weapon.
Brocktree put on his repaired "Elimination Outfit" and put Verminbane in his right hand, so that he could shoot his opponent in the event of a sword lock, and Jamt2 took out the same Wormholers he had been duel-wielding against the Spider King. While Ace took on the Dark Ronin with Grieves and a few other Gwersyll Symudol warriors, and Rover had some fun with a couple more Dragons, Turtle, Jamt2, and Brocktree ran to where the beam of light had shot up.
The three minifigures reached the wall of the depression they were in and began climbing. They reached the top and found a Paradox Shinobi mounted on a dark red/black Dragon. The Shinobi turned towards them and laughed.
"You Nexus Force!" he said, "you risk your lives to protect a glowing pillar of light! You know nothing of honor!"
This had the desired outcome, and Turtle, Jamt2, and Brocktree were seized with rage. They rushed forward and stepped on a landmine.
Turtle flew away from the other two and soared over the ridge. He was coming closer and closer to the ground, and his certain demise. Turtle closed his eyes and prayed that it would be quick, when something jerked on his foot, and he was being lifted away from the ground. He looked up to thank Jamt2 and his jetpack, gut instead was looking at the underside of a Dragon.
"AH!" screamed Turtle, "HELP!"
"What's the matter? Did I miss?" Rover's head popped out over the side of the Dragon.
"Rover!" shouted Turtle, "how are you doing that?"
"The nerve endings at the base of the neck and skull are very vulnerable. Hit the right one with right amount of pressure and the Dragon is completely docile," said Rover, "I've fought enough Dragons in my day."
"Great!" said Turtle, "but how do I get down?"
"Oh, hang on a second," said Rover. He disappeared over the side of the Dragon and returned a second later, "no pun intended."
The Dragon swooped down to the ground and dropped Turtle. He rolled a few feet and stood up. He waved to Rover to show that he was all right and ran off to find Jamt2 and Brocktree.
Rover watched him go and turned his Dragon towards another Dragon. Rover slammed into the Dragon and sent it crashing towards the earth. There was an unusually large dark red/black Dragon flying over the camp and Rover steered his way over to the Dragon. He got close and realized that the Dragon had a rider. It was a Rank Three Paradox Shinobi.
Rover drew his buccaneer pistol and shot it at the Shinobi. The Shinobi heard the bullet coming and used his unnatural reflexes to raise one of his swords and sent the bullet speeding away. Rover shot two more bullets and they were deflected with as much ease as the first one. Rover cursed and gritted his teeth. He turned his Dragon upside-down and zoomed in at the Shinobi. He got a meter away from the Shinobi and released his grip on the Dragon. He crashed into the Shinobi and the two of them toppled off the Dragon's back.
Rover fumbled through his backpack, searching desperately for his jetpack. He found it and equipped it, and zoomed back up to safety. He looked down, hoping to see the Shinobi's pieces scattered all over the ground, but instead saw a figure wearing some legendary Dwarf Gladiator armor zooming up towards him.
Rover drew Hesevalintes and reversed the thrust on his jetpack and zipped towards the ground. He passed the Dwarf Gladiator and reversed the thrust in his jetpack again, now chasing the Gladiator waving Hesevalintes around.
Zatorak looked down and saw the buccaneer. He also saw Madfall coming up silently behind the buccaneer, its jaws open. He smiled as Madfall came within a meter of the buccaneer and his jaws opened wider. Zatorak's grin changed to a frown of fury as a firecracker fell from the buccaneer's hand and into Madfall's open mouth. The Firecracker slid down its throat and the acids in Madfall's stomach detonated it. Madfall let out a horrible shriek and fell towards the ground, taking several Maelstrom Dragons with him. He hit the ground and lay still.
Zatorak was seized with rage and cut all power to his jetpack and fell on top of Rover. Rover gave a yelp of surprise and tried to swerve out of the way, but Zatorak grabbed his leg. Rover's jetpack couldn't support so much weight and it sputtered and died. The two minifigures zoomed towards the ground and Rover tried desperately to shake Zatorak off and reactivate his jetpack. It wasn't working and Zatorak had started swinging his mace at Rover.
They were getting closer to the ground and Zatorak activated his jetpack, leaving Rover to fall to the burning rubbish that used to be a camp. Rover hit the ground and flew right back up into the air. Jamt2 had seen him falling and built a bouncer under him. Jamt2 then flew over and grabbed Rover, fixing the buccaneer's jetpack before his own died on him. The two minifigures flew up to Zatorak to try and take him down, when an enormous tail batted them out of the way. Madfall was still alive.
Zatorak's will to complete this mission quickly soon changed to worry for Madfall and he whistled for Madfall to fly away. The Dragon complied and the two lethal killers flew off into the darkness.
Turtle scanned the ground in front of him, searching for a land mine or something. He looked to his left and saw Jamt2 with a mine detection device, making his way quickly through the plains outside Zatorak's hideout.
The day before, Hael Storm had sent them one of his most experienced Daredevils to scout around and find the hideout. The Daredevil had returned and told them where it was, and Ace, Turtle, Jamt2, Brocktree, Rover, Weasel, and the Daredevil went to stop this mercenary.
Rover, Brocktree and the Daredevil were already at the hideout, Rover and Brocktree betting there with jetpacks, and the Daredevil living up to his faction by running without caution. Turtle reached the wall shortly after Ace and Jamt2, and turned to see Weasel only halfway there.
"Come on, Weasel," said Turtle.
Weasel looked up and mouthed a curse. He looked back to the ground and slowly started walking again. Turtle rolled his eyes and turned around to see Zatorak sitting calmly on a boulder.
"Took your time in noticing me," he said.
Zatorak pushed a button on his wrist and the plains around his hideout blew up. Turtle caught a glimpse of Weasel's startled face before flames engulfed his body. Zatorak laughed and soared off into the night with Madfall, eager for his reward.
Turtle and the others shot at him, but they all missed. The minifigures rushed over to Weasel, but all that was there was a charred skeleton and a metal plate, which he must have kept in his backpack.
Turtle picked up the plate and looked at it.
"What is it?" asked Brocktree.
"It's some kind of writing, but I don't know the language," said Turtle, "except that that means Maelstrom, and Trosglwyddydd means transmitter."
"That's the ancient tongue," said Brocktree, looking over Turtle's shoulder, "I don't speak it either."
"I do," said the Daredevil.
Turtle looked at him and realized he didn't know his name.
"Can you read it for us, Mr.…" said Turtle.
"Rocketracer," said the Daredevil. He took the plate and mumbled to himself for a few minutes.
"I got it!" he said triumphantly, "it says; Maelstrom Transmitter I located under Paradox Research Plant. Maelstrom transmitter II located under Brig Rock. Maelstrom transmitter III located in dead center of Dragonmaw Chasm. Maelstrom transmitter IV located in Wenn Wuzzit's bedroom. Maelstrom Emitter located…"
"Go on," said Turtle.
"Maelstrom Emitter located in Baron Typhonous' staff," said Rocketracer.
"So… what does that mean?" asked Ace, "and why is Wenn Wuzzit's bedroom crossed out?"
"Well," said Turtle slowly, "I think that the Maelstrom transmitters are the things that cause Stromlings and stuff to come out of the ground. And Wenn Wuzzit's bedroom is crossed out because the transmitter has been destroyed."
"So Wenn Wuzzit's a traitor?" asked Jamt2.
"Probably not," said Turtle, "that poor little fellow is so confused he wouldn't know a stromling from a coffee pot."
Then a light clicked in Turtle's head.
"Hey!" he said.
"What is it?" Ace asked, turning and drawing his two katanas, "what did you see?"
"I didn't see anything."
"Then why did you shout?"
"Because I made a connection."
"Well then say 'I made a connection,' instead of shouting 'hey' loud enough to scare away a dragon!" said Ace.
"You sound like Vanda Darkflame," said Turtle, "and that seems kind of long, doesn't it? Couldn't I say something shorter?"
"Would you rather say 'bread and butter pudding' instead?"
"That seems pretty long too," said Turtle.
"What do you suggest, then?" Ace was starting to get angry.
"Well," said Turtle, "I told Vanda Darkflame I'd use the word 'Banana'"
"Fine then! Banana!" said Ace, "now what connection did you make?"
"Well," said Turtle, "Brocktree, do you remember you told me he was accused of blowing up half of Nimbus Station?"
"Yeah," said Brocktree.
"Well," said Turtle, "what if that was because he blew up the transmitter?"
"Yeah!" said Rover, "that was just when the stromlings and everything stopped coming to Nimbus Station! Most people associated it with Weasel's leaving, but this makes just as much sense!"
"Wait a minute," said Turtle, "Brocktree told me that there was a Masquerade who defected to Venture League when Weasel was kicked out who was called Cheerful Power Rover."
"That's right," said Brocktree, "that's your full name isn't it? I forgot."
"Yeah," said Rover, "I was a Masquerade, but not anymore."
"No one's blaming you," said Turtle, "I just want to know if you can remember anything Weasel told you about transmitters."
"I can't remember anything," said Rover rather touchily.
"Okay, forget I said anything," said Turtle, "let's get back to the camp and ask around there."
The six minifigures collected Weasel's remains in a jar and headed back through the mountains.
Madfall and Zatorak streaked through the night sky. Zatorak was now riding Madfall, since his Gladiator armor had run out of fuel, and he didn't like the limited maneuverability in the Mythran jetpack.
Madfall gave a low grunt as they reached the place they were told to meet their employer. Dragonmaw Chasm. The giant predator swooped down into the chasm and skimmed over the ground. Zatorak used his life detector to attempt to find his employer.
The flight was uneventful until a reading came up on Zatorak's HUD. Zatorak pressed his heel into Madfall's neck and the Dragon turned. Zatorak looked at his distance measurer. 30124.1245 yards. Zatorak nudged Madfall again. The Dragon instantly sped up. Zatorak looked at his distance measurer again. 152.23 yards. Madfall saw the black figure before Zatorak did. He gave an inhuman screech that made even Zatorak shiver and landed in front of the hooded minifigure.
Zatorak dismounted and walked over to the cloaked outline.
"I have eliminated Power Hungry Weasel," said Zatorak.
The cloaked figure looked him up and down. He looked quite impressive in his Dwarf Gladiator armor.
"And what of his followers?" asked the figure.
"My assignment was to destroy Power Hungry Weasel and leave no remains of his body," said Zatorak, "destroying his followers was a preference of yours. And I was not paid extra."
The figure sighed and reached under his cloak.
"You bounty hunters will never learn, will you?" said the figure, "when you get employed, you tend to the employer's every whim, and you NEVER ask for more pay after the deal has been closed."
"I'm not your average bounty hunter," said Zatorak, "I don't learn the easy way."
"Then I guess I'll have to teach you the hard way," said the figure.
His hands glowed with some sort of white light and a shield and an immensely long pole appeared in his hands. The pole crackled with electricity and Zatorak knew that a solid hit on his big toe would be enough to electrocute him.
Zatorak reached in his backpack and pulled out a fuel can. He started to refuel his jetpack, but then halfway through turned the can over and threw the rest of the gasoline at the hooded figure. The gasoline covered his body and Zatorak quickly pointed his flamethrower at the black minifigure. Flames engulfed his body, but the minifigure just laughed.
"You'll have to do better than that!" laughed the figure.
Zatorak pushed a button on his chest and blue flames shot from his jetpack, lifting him in the air. He drew his custom J-P12 laser pistols and blast shot after shot at the figure. The figure laughed again and used his electric pole to deflect the lasers. Eventually the black individual drew his own pistol and fired a shot up at Zatorak. Zatorak didn't make it out of the way in time and fell to the ground.
Zatorak quickly picked himself up and took off his Dwarf Gladiator gear. He quickly equipped his Paradox Shinobi gear and leaped at the figure. The figure blocked Zatorak with his rod and then thrust his shield into Zatorak's side. Zatorak screamed as the tiny barbs that cover the shield entered and exited his side in a flash.
Zatorak leaped away from the figure and removed his wide brimmed helmet. He drew his arm back and threw his helmet like a Frisbee. The figure swung his pole and sliced the helmet in half, the two pieces falling to the ground uselessly. The figure leaped into the air and came down hard on Zatorak's shoulders.
The figure pinned Zatorak to the ground and pointed his pole between Zatorak's eyes. In the jump, the figure's hood had been thrown off and Zatorak looked at the face in horror.
It wasn't yellow like most minifigure's faces, it was orange, as though it had been set on fire, and it was covered in scars a thick as his eyes. His hair, although, was brown and untidy, and did not look burnt at all.
"If you're finished staring," said the minifigure. He lifted his pole and a dark red mass hit the minifigure and knocked him to the ground.
Zatorak looked and saw Madfall coming around for another attack. The figure shouted something six Maelstrom Dragons flew at Madfall. The Dragons wrestled in the air and Zatorak leaped at the minifigure. The minifigure thrust his shield at Zatorak and sent him tumbling to the ground. He then turned to Madfall ad threw an electricity bolt at him. The Dragon screamed and fell to the ground. The minifigure turned to Zatorak.
"My name is Demonstrait," said the minifigure, "you work for me."
Spakybob brushed the ash and dust off a rock. He sat down on the rock and began to sharpen Klaanten, his javelin. He looked up at the mountain range and shook his head.
"It's been too long," said Spakybob. The six Nexus Force minifigures had disappeared with Weasel almost six ours ago, and Spakybob had been left in charge.
"Colonel," Spakybob heard someone say.
He turned and saw Lieutenant Grieves walking up to him.
"Report, Lieutenant," said Spakybob.
"I have assembled the hunt, and they are prepared to begin the search for General Weasel and the six Gysylltiad," said Grieves.
"Start the search, you know what to do," said Spakybob.
Grieves nodded and turned towards the hunt.
"Commence search, this is not a drill," said Grieves.
The ten hunters nodded and took off for the mountains. Spakybob watched them go and went back to sharpening Klaanten.
"How long will it take them?" Spakybob inquired.
"Not too long," replied Grieves, "they work fast."
There was a shout and the hunt came back into view, with a group of minifigures behind them.
"Very fast indeed," said Spakybob.
Spakybob and Grieves walked up to where the hunt had reentered the depression. They reached the gap in the rocks and looked around, confused.
"Where's General Weasel?' asked Spakybob.
Everyone looked at Rover, who was holding the jar of ashes, and Rover quickly handed it to Brocktree.
"Thanks a lump," Brocktree muttered to Rover. He then turned to the Gwersyll Symudol, who had gathered around him, "we tried to enter the hideout of the bounty hunter Zatorak, but regrettably, Lord Weasel was burnt to the ground."
There was a moment of silence. Then Spakybob walked up to Brocktree and took the jar out of his hands. As if a spell had been broken, the crowds exploded into grumbling and muttering. Spakybob looked inside the jar and shook it around. Not finding what he was looking for, he turned to Brocktree.
"Ferret usually carried around a stone plaque, and he said I should take it if something should happen to him," said Spakybob.
Turtle didn't know what, but something about Spakybob's nature upset him. Maybe it was the platinum javelin he carried and held as if he was ready to kill anything at a moment's notice. Maybe even planned to.
"About the stone plaque," said Turtle, "we were going to ask you a question about it."
"If you're asking me to translate it you're wasting your time," said Spakybob.
"No, no," said Turtle, "we found someone to translate it, we were just wondering if our guess to what the contents mean is a good one."
"Again, you're wasting your time," said Spakybob, "I'll take that plaque now."
Turtle reached into his backpack and drew the plaque he had taken from the ashes of Weasel. He took a picture with his Flash Bulb and handed the plague to Spakybob.
"What was that for?" asked Spakybob.
"So that I can make a replica when I get back to Nexus Tower, except I'll make it in English," said Turtle.
"I'm sorry, but I can't let you do that," said Spakybob.
Turtle shrugged his shoulders.
"Suck it up," said Turtle, and then ducked quickly as a silver javelin flew inches over his head.
Turtle jumped and twisted in the air, slamming the soul of his boot into Spakybob's nose. Spakybob staggered back and drew his Heroic Force Blade. Turtle drew his basic short sword of knockback.
Spakybob rushed at Turtle and was then sent flying back by Turtle's short sword. Spakybob stood up again and this time drew a bow and arrow. Three arrows soared at Turtle and he rolled to the side to avoid them. Three more arrows flew at Turtle and struck with a thud in his MKIII shield. Another arrow flew at Turtle's sword and his blade was sent spinning away.
Turtle jumped at Spakybob and took him by surprise. The two minifigures rolled on the ground, grappling with one another. Turtle got a hold on Spakybob's wrist and wrenched his arm into a painful twist.
"AH!" screamed Spakybob, "Let me go!"
"No," said Turtle, "or you'll just jump back on top of me!"
"I promise I won't!" screamed Spakybob.
"You most certain- -" Turtle began, but was cut off by two Dragons roaring and flying into the camp.
Turtle jumped off of Spakybob and reached for his lightning staff. He swung his staff and sent a lightning bolt at the two Dragons. One of the dragons swerved and narrowly avoided the lightning bolt. The other dragon dove down to the bottom of the camp and landed. It's black-cloaked rider dismounted and his mount, Terror, roared and flew back into the air. The ground soldiers instantly rushed at the grounded warrior and were just as instantly thrown away from him. Turtle saw Ace turn into a whirlwind of fire and rush down at the black rider.
"Assemble into defense formation! All archers on southern ridge!" yelled Spakybob. He glared at Turtle, "stay out of my way, Gysylltiad, this is our battle."
Turtle wasn't in the mood to argue, so he shrugged and ran down to the bottom of the depression. He brandished his staff and rushed at the dark cloaked figure. He reached him and poked his staff at the black minifigure. His stab was deflected by the minifigure's shield and Turtle followed up by slamming his shield into the minifigure's side and sending him staggering back. Turtle's opponent whistled and Terror swooped down next to him. Turtle swung his staff at him, but the warrior was already in the air.
"That minifigure is good," Demonstrait whispered to Terror, "too good."
He turned his attention away from Turtle and looked at a Rank three Daredevil firing his flareguns up at him. He flicked his sword, which looked deceptively like a pole, and sent an electricity bolt at the green minifigure. The Venture League dove out of the way and launched his Fig-on-Fire at Demonstrait. Demonstrait continued to send electricity bolts at him until an annoying Buccaneer shot it out of his hands.
Demonstrait watched his weapon fall to earth and stared at the Buccaneer with fury in his heart. He sincerely wished he really did work for the Darkitect and this was not a disguise so that he could launch Maelstrom lightning at the pirate. Demonstrait instead pulled out a communicator and talked to Zatorak.
"Zatorak," said Demonstrait, "take out those Venture League minifigures."
"All three of them?" asked Zatorak.
"No, no," said Demonstrait, "only the Buccaneer and the Daredevil, leave the other one for me."
"Whatever," said Zatorak. He had been as indifferent as he could gat away with ever since Demonstrait had beaten him in combat.
Demonstrait watched Zatorak jump off Madfall's back and fly aggressively towards the Buccaneer in his Dwarf Gladiator armor. The Buccaneer shot a couple of bullets at the Gladiator and the shells hit their mark.
Two bullets hit the control buttons on Zatorak's chest plate and his Jetpack died on him. He gave a yelp of surprise and then was zooming towards the ground. He frantically pushed the buttons on his chest, but the Buccaneer's bullets had fused them down. Zatorak hit the ground and smashed.
He rebuilt three miles away from the battle, his jetpack still broken. Zatorak whistled for Madfall and the Dragon's innate ears heard his master's call. He stopped burning a warrior he had come across and flew in the direction of his master. Rover saw his sudden change in movement and used his Mythran Jetpack to intercept the red Dragon.
Rover caught hold of Madfall's hind leg and scrambled up onto his back. He waved Hesevalintes and thrust it into Madfall's back. The Dragon screamed as the pointed blade cut through his armor and tore at his skin. Rover kept driving it down until the Dragon's wings went limp and Madfall fell towards the ground. Rover fired up his jetpack and watched the Dragon fall to earth, never to get up again.
Rover limped back into the camp, nursing his leg that he had just snapped back on. He walked into the camp and found everyone huddled around Brocktree, who was lying on the ground.
"Don't mind me," said Rover, "I only just took out a dragon and had my leg snapped off."
"Oh, Rover," said Turtle, "we were wondering where you went."
"But you didn't bother to go and look for me," said Rover moodily.
"Yes, we did," said Turtle, "but then Brock here stepped on a mine. His armor took most of the blow, but he's seriously wounded."
"Doesn't he have a mine scanner?" asked Rover quizzically.
"Yeah," said Turtle, "he was using it too, but it must be broken or something."
"So where did that other dude go?" asked Rover, "the guy with the shiny pole?"
"He disappeared," said Turtle, "literally. He just vanished."
"Hmm…" said Rover. An idea was forming in his head.
"Turtle?" asked Rover, "I didn't get up very close to this dude, but didn't he seem familiar?"
"I don't know," said Turtle, "I guess something about him was familiar."
"When he jumped on his Dragon, his hood fell off, and for a moment, his face flickered, like a hologram, and I saw Weasel."
"Weasel?" said Turtle, incredulous, "but he's dead!"
"I know," said Rover, "but back when I was a Masquerade we studied how to change our appearance. For centuries people had been doing it with Holograms, but they were always see-through, but Weasel discovered the power of illusion."
"Illusion?" said Turtle, "you mean that was Weasel?"
"The whole thing was probably an illusion," said Rover, "Weasel loved to create an illusion and move it around. And when he got an emotional flare, his illusion would flicker and echo his appearance."
"But… we saw him die!" said Turtle, "he was blown up!"
"One time he convinced the entire Nexus Force that Nexus Tower had blown up. He was good," said Rover.
"I still don't believe that was an illusion," said Turtle stubbornly, "I thrust my shield into his side!"
"Illusions can be solid if the caster is good enough," said Rover.
"Well," said Turtle, "I suppose it's possible, but you still haven't given an excuse as to why he's still alive."
"That black dude is obviously Zatorak's employer," said Rover, "he could have given Zatorak duds and made the illusion of an explosion. Then he would turn invisible and walk away."
"That would also explain why Brocktree's scanner didn't work," said Turtle, catching on, "Weasel would have blocked the reading with an illusion!"
"So my equipment isn't broken?" said Brocktree, looking up.
"No, your equipment is not broken," said Turtle.
"All better," said Brocktree, sitting up.
"Suppose Weasel is still alive, what is his motive?" asked Turtle. Again.
"I really don't know," said Rover, exasperated, "mow leave me alone!"
For the past few days, Turtle had been constantly bugging Rover about his theory of Weasel's illusions. And now that the Nexus force members were in a transport on their way to Nexus Tower, after receiving a summon from Vanda Darkflame, Rover had no way to avoid Turtle.
"It could be that he wants us to destroy the Maelstrom transmitters," said Turtle, "but then why didn't he just hand us the tablet?"
"Oh, leave him alone," said Jamt2, "he was just proposing a theory."
"I know," said Turtle, "and I'm just debunking his proposal."
"FINE!" screamed Rover, "WEASEL IS DEAD, AND THAT FLYING CHARACTER WAS ABLE TO DISAPPEAR BEACAUSE HE'S A TINY LITTLE FAIRY!"
"Your first theory made more sense," said Ace.
"SHUT UP!" hollered Rover.
There was silence.
"You know," said Brocktree, "it could be that Weasel wanted the maelstrom to be defeated, and he wanted as many Nexus Force as possible to go down with it."
"As a form of revenge?" asked Turtle.
"Exactly," said Brocktree.
"Well…" said Turtle, "I suppose it makes sense."
"Of course it makes sense," said Rocketracer, "he wants us to pay for what we did, but he wants the maelstrom to be destroyed!"
"Okay," said Turtle, "I guess I'll accept that."
"Good," said Rover, "now leave me alone."
"Um," said Ace, "where's the bathroom?"
Everyone looked around the single-roomed transport. Then there was the sound of six minifigures facepalming.
Weasel flew through the night air of Crux Prime on his dragon-shaped illusion. He raised his hand as he neared Nexus Tower and he and his illusion became an invisible form. He used another illusion to befuddle the movement sensors, and he landed in Nexus Tower.
Weasel destroyed his illusion and walked silently through the corridor of Nexus Tower. He passed the doors of his past comrades, Duke Exeter, Vanda Darkflame, Hael Storm, and Albert Overbuild, and then passed the janitor's closet, which used to be his office.
Weasel continued down the hallway and opened a door leading to the Imagination Nexus. He still loved to look at it. He created an illusion of a jetpack and flew down the shaft of the spiraling light. He reached the bottom and removed his invisibility disguise. He loved doing this, as most people thought that the shaft was bottomless.
Weasel looked around him to make sure nothing was watching him, and then walked to a door. He pried the door open and walked into the room it led into. Three more doors were in front of him, and he took the one on the right. Thirteen more doors and he was standing in a massive chamber, where the torches flickered and cast long shadows on the wall.
Weasel walked to the other side of he room and opened up yet another door, only this time he didn't walk through it. A chartreuse portal appeared in the doorway and Weasel shouted into it.
"Spakybob!" shouted Weasel, "come out from there!"
Spakybob walked out of Forbidden Valley and into the chamber below Nexus Tower.
"Yes?" asked Spakybob.
"Those Nexus Force, did they take the tablet?" asked Weasel.
"No," said Spakybob, "but they took an image of it."
"Good," said Weasel, "very good, they fell for it."
"I still don't see what you're trying to accomplish," said Spakybob.
"You don't need to," said Weasel.
"I am your most faithful servant!" said Spakybob angrily, "I do everything you ask of me without question! I at least deserve to know your intentions!"
"Alright," said Weasel, after a few seconds hesitation, "I'll tell you."
Weasel grabbed Spakybob's arm and dragged him through the chamber, through all fifteen doors into the Nexus Shaft.
"You see this?" asked Weasel.
"Yes," said Spakybob.
"What is it?" asked Weasel.
"It's the Imagination Nexus," said Spakybob.
"Correct," said Weasel, "Now what is this?"
Weasel waved his hand and the pure blue dissipated and a dark red strand took its place.
"I…" stuttered Spakybob, "I don't know."
"This is the Dark Spyral," said Weasel, "it supports Imagination, without it, the Nexus would disappear."
"Oh," said Spakybob.
"And if the Nexus disappears," continued Weasel, "we die, even the Darkitect will die."
"But I thought he was against imagination," said Spakybob.
"Pure imagination, yes," said Weasel, "but the maelstrom is also imagination, only mutated and corrupted."
"So?" asked Spakybob.
"The Nexus Force is too weak to win this war, that much is certain," said Weasel, "which means the Darkitect will take over the Nexus and destroy it, destroying the Dark Spyral with it."
"This Dark Spyral must be quite something," said Spakybob.
"Indeed," said Weasel, "I get all my illusion powers from that Spyral."
"So, what will the tablet give the Nexus Force?" asked Spakybob.
"The knowledge of how to win this war," said Weasel, "I would have done it myself, but it is impossible to destroy the Maelstrom Emitter without sacrificing yourself, because it will cause a giant shock wave that will destroy everything on the surface of Crux Prime."
"Which is why you're down here," said Spakybob.
"Yes," said Weasel, "and once the Nexus Force and the Maelstrom are destroyed, I shall rise from the ashes, the supreme ruler of the world."
"I don't know," said Spakybob, "if I had known your intensions, I would not have followed you. I don't like the idea of killing everyone."
Weasel stared at Spakybob intently. Then he gave an order for Spakybob to follow him through some more doors. They entered a small, dark room, where a battered minifigure was chained to the wall.
"This is what happens to minifigures who either fail me, or desert me," said Weasel. He snapped his fingers and torches lined along the flared to life, revealing the skeletons of other minifigures who had been left here to die. There was an empty one with a plaque over it, and Spakybob leaned close to read it.
'This spot reserved for Cheerful Power Rover,' said the plaque.
"This is Zatorak," said Weasel, pointing to the minifigure that was chained to the wall, "he failed me."
The Nexus Transport landed at Nexus Tower with a loud sucking noise as the air under it was blown out of the way. The hatch opened up and the Nexus Force members walked out of the transport. They turned and saw Vanda Darkflame waiting for them.
"Hullo!" she called when she saw them, "I've got some good news!"
They walked over to her and saw that she had a Rank Three Assembly Summoner with her.
"This is Alphawarrior," said Vanda Darkflame, noticing their interest, "I'll get to him in a minute."
"So why the urgent summon?" asked Turtle.
"I've located the Spider King," said Vanda Darkflame.
"Oh, right," said Turtle, "I completely forgot about him."
"You forgot?" asked Vanda.
"Let's just say that there's been a lot going on lately," said Turtle.
"That's for sure," Rover muttered.
"Anyway," said Vanda, "I'm sure you're all bursting with excitement to know the story of how I found The Spider King, so I'll tell you the story.
"After you left, I confronted Hael Storm and convinced him to let me use a team of his best scouts to help me locate the monster. It did little to no help. I then left my office and began a search myself. Same results. It was on my return that I came across Alphawarrior showing off his abilities in front of his friends in the Assembly wing."
"I wasn't showing off," mumbled Alphawarrior.
"I was impressed with his skills and then took him aside and quizzed him on his abilities, he having been showing his exceptional talent at locating objects with this new device he had created," continued Vanda, "I asked him if he could intensify the device enough to search the whole Nimbus System and he replied that he could, but it would take a couple days."
"And this device worked," finished Jamt2. Being a first-class assembler, he always liked to learn something new.
"Yes, it did," said Vanda, "although not as much as I would have hoped. I couldn't locate the Darkitect's lair, but that's not too surprising."
"So where is the Spider King?" asked Brocktree.
Vanda pushed a button and a holographic map appeared in front of her.
"Here," said Vanda, pointing to a planet chunk not far from the Venture Explorer, "he is residing in a cave, and a host of the same Fire-Stromlings you met on your first encounter with the Arachnid are guarding him."
"Out of curiosity, what is the name of that particular planet chunk, if it has one?" asked Rocketracer.
"It's called Jardulla," said Vanda, "a planet that long ago became unable to support life."
"Normal life, anyway," said Ace, "the Maelstrom doesn't seem to be affected be that."
"No," said Vanda, "it can reside in places unimaginable to minifig kind."
"So," said Rover, "how are we going to get there? Are we going to use just regular rockets?"
"If you so desire," said Vanda, "I was planning to teleport you there, though."
"I think I'd rather fly," said Rover.
"That makes sense," said Brocktree sarcastically, "that way you can get sucked into the Maelstrom Vortex."
"Oh yeah," said Rover, "teleporting it is, then."
Turtle stepped into the teleportation console and smashed. His pieces rebuilt on a large, rocky terrain, next to Rover and Rocketracer, who had insisted on going first.
"What a jolly place," said Turtle through his breathing mask.
"Oh, yes," said Rover, "absolutely spiffing."
Brocktree, Ace, Alphawarrior, and Jamt2 teleported next to them and gave exclamations of shock as the gravity (or, moreover, the lack of it) made their insides float around inside of them.
"I've never been in space before, with the exception of my rocket," said Ace.
"I have, once," said Brocktree, "when I was exploring a large battlestation that had the destructive capacity to destroy an entire planet. That was a nightmare."
"It sounds like it was hard," said Jamt2.
"You have no idea," said Brocktree, shuddering.
"Anyway," said Turtle, "where's this alleged cave?"
"Gee, I dunno," said Brocktree.
"I do," said Alphawarrior, pulling out a GPS of some kind and pointing to his left, "that way."
"Great, let's go," said Rover, "time is money."
The minifigures headed off in the direction of the cave and kept glancing around them to make sure that they weren't ambushed by anything.
"Okay, stop," said Alphawarrior, thrusting his hand out to reinforce the command, "we're getting very close to the cave, so if we have a battle plan, this is the time to use it."
"Well, O mighty thinker," said Rover, slapping Turtle on the back, "what is the plan?"
"Well," said Turtle, "if I could see the cave that might help."
"C'mon," said Alphawarrior, putting on his jetpack, "if you don't have one, just grab this rope."
Turtle grabbed the rope and Alphawarrior flew up into the sky. When he got about thirty feet into the air, Alphawarrior pointed down at a giant hole in the ground.
"That's a cave?" asked Turtle, "it looks more like a tunnel."
"Maybe," said Alphawarrior, "but it's a cave."
"Well, I've seen it, and I think I have an idea," said Turtle.
"Okay," said Alphawarrior.
Turtle let go of the rope and let the slight gravity lower him gently down. He hit the ground and began formulating the details of his plan.
"So?" asked Jamt2, "how are we gonna do it?"
"Well," said Turtle, "first, we either have to destroy distract the Fire Stromlings, because even though they can't harm us, they can get in our way."
"They can't harm us?" asked Rocketracer, "don't they have flamethrowers?"
"There's no oxygen," said Brocktree, "fire needs oxygen to burn."
"Aw…" said Ace, re-sheathing his Katanas of Fire.
"Exactly," said Turtle, "but they can still obstruct our way and block our attacks."
"So how do we get rid of them?" asked Jamt2.
"Well, I'm not in Sentinel, so I'm not sure about this, but most Stromlings have a morbid fear of ponies," said Turtle, "so if Alpha and Jamt2 could build a giant, armed pony, that'd be great."
"We're on it," said Jamt2, "I'll do the body, Alpha can do the weapons and defense."
"Sure thing," said Alpha, "do you want plasma-based or Gihartian-based lasers?"
"Uh…" said Turtle, "you decide."
"Gihartian-based would be more powerful," said Alpha, "but plasma-based would produce a chain of powerful molecules that could…"
While Alpha continued his list of sources, Turtle formulated the strategies and formation they would use on the Spider King.
"Brocktree, you'll head the assault on the Spider King, so while he's focused on you, Rover, Rocketracer, and I will attack from the left," said Turtle, "then, Ace will join you and you two will lead the real assault on the Spider King."
"Sounds good to me," said Rover, "unless, of course, it doesn't come out of its cave."
"If that happens, we'll just have to think up something different," said Turtle, "in the mean time, we'll just have to wait for Jamt2 and Alpha to finish up with the pony."
It wasn't long before Jamt2 and Alpha completed the pony, and Turtle had to admit that he felt rather insignificant next to the gigantic pony. Except for one thing.
"Um, I thought there were gonna be weapons?" asked Turtle.
"Ahem," coughed Alpha, pressing a button on a remote. The side panels of the pony's body slid apart and machine guns, rocket launchers, and precision lasers popped out of the darkness behind.
"Oh, okay," said Turtle.
"So how are we gonna begin?" asked Rover.
"With this," said Turtle. He reached into his backpack and pulled out a bomb attached to an Extra-Strong-Notion Potion.
"Handy that," said Rocketracer.
"I made it on the way to Nexus Tower," shrugged Turtle, "anyways, this'll detonate inside the tunnel, sorry, CAVE," Turtle corrected himself at a cough from Alpha, "and take care of most of the Maelstrom in there. Then the pony will come in."
"And give those fiery things a run for their money," finished Jamt2.
"Exactly," said Turtle, "now are we all ready? Good. Rocketracer, Rover, follow me."
The three Venture League minifigures ran stealthily toward the tunnel – sorry, CAVE – and Turtle hurled the bomb into the cave. The bomb floated slowly downward and Turtle yelled for the others to get back. There was a colossal explosion and pieces of rock flew everywhere. There was a flash as the sunlight reflected off the pony Jamt2 and Alpha had built and the metallic pony started toward the entrance of the cave. Alpha pushed another button on his remote and all its weapons began firing at the cave, where the glowing red eyes of the fire stromlings could be seen.
Turtle watched the tiny fire stromlings run away form the pony and subsequently getting shot. But the Spider King still wasn't showing itself. Unfortunately for the minifigures, even though a lot of the laws of physics are forsaken in LEGO Universe, other principles of science are still in place. Such as the fact that sound is vibrations, so without air, sound cannot be transmitted to the ear, so they did not hear a gigantic monster break out of the ground behind them.
The Spider King turned its bleary glowing eyes in the direction of the minifigures and dimly remembered something. In the journey from the tunnel – *Alpha glares at me* sorry, cave – it bumped its head rather badly and was having trouble remembering everything.
'I know that I'm supposed to do something to those guys, but what is it?' thought the Spider King, 'maybe I should go back in the tunnel and try to remember.'
Alpha's mind began to spin and he sensed someone (or something) call that cave a tunnel. He turned in the direction of the towering monster and stared into its eyes. At the sight of the Imagination present in the minifigure, the brain of the Spider King snapped and it remembered that it was supposed to attack the little plastic warriors.
The Spider King gave an ear-splitting shriek (which wasn't heard) and clicked its pincers at Alpha menacingly. Alpha spoke through his communicator and screamed for help as the monster made its way toward the Master Builder.
"HELPMETHESPIDERKINGTHINGYISGONNAEATMEUPIFYOUDONTDOSOMETHINGHELPHELPHELPHELPHELPHELPMEPLEASEITISENORMOUS!" came the delirious voice of Alphawarrior, who hadn't seen the Spider King before.
"Could you repeat that?" asked Brocktree, who hadn't taken in a word of the incomprehensible blabber of the Engineer.
"HELP!" cried Alpha.
Brocktree turned and saw the Spider King, with its weapons raised and its jaws clicking.
Brocktree quickly alerted the others to the presence of the Spider King and they turned to face the giant monster.
"I'd forgotten how big it is," said Ace.
"It does look bigger than last time," agreed Turtle.
The monster gave another (unheard) shriek and swiped its massive claw at the minifigures. Most of them gave a cry of alarm and fled before the advancing pincer, while Brocktree drew Verminbane and attempted to parry the blow. Although he did succeed in cleaving a portion of the Spider King's claw off, the force of the Arachnid Monarch's blow sent Brocktree flying.
Jamt2 had surrounded himself in his turret-armed fortress, Alphawarrior was waving his Summoner Staff around and calling an army of Thwoks, Ace was calling down lightning bolts using the electric discharge the Spider King was giving off, Brocktree was picking himself up off the ground, Rover was hacking away at the Spider King's feet with Hesevalintes, Turtle was shooting lightning from his staff, and Rocketracer was zooming around on his Rutcarver.
The Spider King stared at Rocketracer zooming around on his Rutcarver and found annoyance at the zooming blur of Green and black. He began building up some flame in his inner stomach and kept his eyes fixed on Rocketracer. His flame reached maximum damage and a huge fireball flew at Rocketracer. The Daredevil attempted to stop his Rutcarver, but it's devilishly hard to hit the brakes in space. The fireball zoomed towards Rocketracer, but suddenly it disappeared. The lack of Oxygen had overtaken it.
The Spider King gave a mighty bellow and charged at Rocketracer, its eight massive legs closing the distance between the monster and the Daredevil with blinding speed. The monster leapt at Rocketracer and its massive claws closed around the form of Rocketracer.
"HELP!" screamed the Daredevil.
Brocktree saw the claws clamped around Rocketracer and charged at the monster. The monster saw the Super Sentinel running at him and sent him flying with a flick of his tail. Turtle ran at the Spider King, launching lightning bolts at its massive head. The monster became perturbed and reached out to swat the minifigure. Turtle rolled to his left and continued shooting lightning at the Spider King. The lightning scorched its head and neck, and the antagonistic monster leapt at Turtle. Turtle felt a moment of terror and then the enormous jaws of the Spider King closed around him.
Turtle began to be sucked down the gullet of the giant monster, but he made a mad reach over him and found something to hand onto: the axe handle of a thwok that the Spider King had gobbled down.
The Spider King felt that Turtle had not slid down its throat into oblivion, and began shaking its head violently. Turtle was being shaken around like a rag doll and his grip was weakening. He felt that death was coming up on him fast, so he closed his eyes and saw his life flash before him. He saw his first smashing of a stromling, the first time he was smashed by a stromling, when a Dark Ronin attacked him on his Block Yard Property, him warding off the Spider King with a bottle of Notion Potion, him joining a faction….
Turtle's eyes shot open. He reached into his pack and pulled out a bottle of experimental Extra Extra Extra Strong Notion Potion Plus and uncorked it. He held it over the open throat of the Spider King and let go.
A violent explosion sparked in the stomach of the Spider King. Its body twitched and quaked and a rumbling was heard, coming from deep inside it. There was a blindingly bright blue flash and the Spider King was no more.
Fake Chapter 13Edit
A sleek Pod Rocket soared low into the atmosphere of Crux Minor, the less famous counterpart of Crux Prime. The rocket veered up and stayed still for half a second, then a figure jumped out of the cockpit and hit the ground. Hard. The figure, nursing his sprained ankle, reached up and put his pod rocket in his backpack. He wobbled across the barren landscape of Crux Minor and eventually came to a halt in front of a huge building.
"It's me, the Evil Lord Bert!" said the figure.
"I'm sorry I need the password," said a deep voice on the other side of the door.
"We don't have a password!" said Bert angrily.
"Precisely," said the deep voice coolly, and the door slid open.
Bert walked through the door and came into a long, dark hallway. He stalked into a strange door and cursed loudly.
"Darn, these automatic doors, they never open!" said Bert, and proceeded to jump up and down and wave his arms around like a lunatic, in an attempt to get the automatic door to open.
"Excuse me, sir," said Bert's aid, coming out of another door and taken incredulous by the sight of the evil lord apparently raving mad, "but what are you doing?"
"Trying to get this automatic door to open!" said Bert angrily.
"Pardon my intrusion on the intellect of one as sharp as yourself, but are you aware that that is not an automatic door?"
"What?" asked Bert, frozen rigid.
"That door has made a resignation speech of being an automatic door. It won't open until we install a button," said the aid.
"WHAT?" asked Bert, "I hate buttons! I demand a switch instead!"
"I'm sorry, sir, but the door insists on having a button. It and several other doors are on strike," said Bert.
"How can a door be on strike? And how can it give a resignation speech?" demanded Bert, "I absolutely forbid it! Besides that it doesn't make sense."
"Oh, yes," said the aid, "then I guess it still is an automatic door."
With that the door slid open and Bert limped into the dark chamber inside. It was a vast meeting chamber, with a long table in the center and several smaller tables in the center.
"Hector," said Bert, addressing the aid, cackling madly, "Call in the council."
"I can't, sir," said Hector, "they're on Holiday."
"No they're not!" said Bert, "you and I are that only ones on the council!"
"No wonder I couldn't find them," muttered Hector, and sat at the meeting table.
Bert picked up a rubber mallet and banged it on the table.
"I call this meeting to order!" said Bert, "The legislative council of Bert's Evil Operations™ in now in session! I want to address a very pressing problem this meeting. I'm not scary enough! Half the people I come across don't even know who I am!"
"Maybe you should get a new name," suggested Hector.
"No! My mother would hate it!"
"How about new weapons?"
"My poisonous pencil is my trademark!"
"Why don't you try letting your beard grow out really long, and then you can comb I over your head?" said Hector.
"That's the most ridiculous idea I've ever heard!"
"Then don't do it."
Brocktree tunneled through the ash and plume that littered the ground and air around him. He had to find Turtle, he would not accept the fact that he was dead.
"Turtle!" cried Brocktree, "Turtle!"
No response came. Brocktree continued to call out his name and tunnel through the innards of the Spider King. He continued searching for several minutes with no results. After half an hour of searching, Brocktree began to face the truth. He sat down on a rock and heard a small yelp from where he sat down. Brocktree jumped off the supposed rock and stared down atTurtle.
"Turtle!" said Brocktree in alarm.
"I'm *cough* all right," said Turtle, and then began a sequence of coughs and hacks that eventually resulted in regurgitation.
"Are you sure you're all right?" asked Brocktree with concern in his voice.
"Just fine," said Turtle, making an attempt to manage a weak smile.
Just then, Rover bowled through the floating remains of the Spider King and saw the dejected form of Turtle.
"I found him!" yelled Rover, "and Brocktree!"
"Great!" came the cries of his fellow comrades, and they soon reached the point where Turtle was beginning to throw up again.
"Is everyone here? Great," asked Brocktree, looking around. He pulled out a fancy communicator and spoke into it, "beam us back, Vanda."
There was a shimmering and the seven minifigures appeared in Nexus Tower, right in front of the Imagination Nexus. The minifigures turned and saw Vanda Darkflame running towards them, concerned.
"Are any of you hurt?" she asked, "Oh, Turtle!!!"
On the sight of the slumped Turtle, she ran towards him and shoved Brocktree violently aside.
"Move aside, Sentinel, he's hurt…. Oh no!" said Vanda, as she saw that her shove had been a bit too powerful, and Brocktree was sent spiraling into the bottomless Nexus Shaft. There was a thud.
"Thud?" asked Alphawarrior questioningly, "How can there be a thud in a bottomless pit?"
The minifigures looked down the shaft and saw Brocktree lying on… nothing. He appeared to be floating in mid-air. After a huddled conference, Rover, Jamt2, Alphawarrior, and Rocketracer strapped on their jetpacks and soared down the shaft. They hit the ground and Alphawarrior used some high-tech medical equipment to treat Brocktree, while Jamt2, Rover, and Rocketracer tried to find out what was holding them up.
"Aha!" said Rover after a while, "it's an illusion! Very similar to the ones that the Masquerade Faction used to use!"
"So you mean that we really are standing on something solid, but it looks like a deep shaft?" asked Jamt2.
"Right," said Rover, "and the section of wall looks like an illusion too."
"I'm coming down," said Ace, leaping down.
"Wait for me," said Turtle, and made an attempt to climb down after him.
"You're coming with me to sick bay," said Vanda, pulling him back.
Turtle looked at his friends huddled in the shaft. "I guess you're right," he said, then slammed his heel into Vanda's ankle.
Vanda grabbed her ankle in pain and Turtle dove down the shaft. He broke his fall with a roll and stood up, mayhap a little shakily.
"Rover, where is this wall-illusion?" asked Turtle.
"Right here," said Rover, leaning on the wall. There was the creaking of hinges and he was absorbed through the wall.