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Shin Hi Hi Puffy AmiYumi Dreams > Creative Works > Game-Jumping Adventures #4


Posted by: WarioMan Apr 13 2016, 03:29 AM
-The Evils of Earth and outer space!-

PROLOGUE

[Opening BGM: Menus (Contra 4)]

In the year 20XX AD, the Earth was at peace thanks to the heroic efforts of the Contras - Aaron, Ami, Bill Rizer, Lance Bean, Blaze Bomber and most recently, Arctic Bomber, the only member to have reformed herself from the past misdeeds she'd committed against the Contras back when she worked for the Hate Bombers. Red Falcon's fourth attempt at world domination, if not its complete destruction, has failed and he, along with his Hate Bombers and the reprogrammed Five Dastardly Bombers were utterly destroyed once and for all, bringing an end to World War III or what the survivors of our planet dubbed as the second-half of the Alien Wars. Countless lives from all over the world had perished just as bad as what had happened a long time ago during World War II, and had it not been for the Contras and their friends and allies alike, the fate of mankind would have been a lot worse.

Though it became clear a few months later during the Vaati incident, that Red Falcon's remnants are alive, the Contras made a vow they'd keep an eye out for any suspicious activities across the planet Earth, be it an attempt by Sniper Bomber, Axe Bomber, Volcano Bomber, Yellow Cobra and Swampster the Terrible to rebuild the Red Falcon Empire or otherwise. Currently they are stuck in limbo when the Contras banished them in the underworld through an existing "Polybius" cabinet in the forbidden "Nethertainment" center, but the heroes knew there may be another banned game cabinet to serve as an interdimensional portal. While life in Diamond City prospered as normal, the Contras were recently assigned to investigate strange activity coming from the Galuga Archipelago, off the coast of New Zealand; accompanying them was Yuffie Kisaragi, a heroic ninja girl who had since lived in Diamond City as Kat and Ana's mentor at the Diamond Dojo, not to mention 9-Volt's guardian angel as well.

The only piece of evidence the six Contras' navigator, Penny Crygor, could pick up from recent news reports worldwide was the fact that Tokyo and Cyber City, located in Japan and Australia respectively, were under attack by what appeared to be demons from hell, robots from space, and even corrupt soldiers. Speaking of corrupt soldiers, it became clear the Red Falcon Empire's remnants had recently recruited the worst kind of scum on Earth - not that the Contras should be surprised. Henceforth, the heroes and their ninja ally departed aboard the Contra Cruiser and the CrygorCopter to thwart the enemy invasions and pay another visit to the Galuga Archipelago, but not before assuring their friends that no scumbag would dare touch Diamond City or any other major city on Earth as long as they're around.

[End BGM]

--------------------

[Tutorial BGM: Navi Customizer (Mega Man Battle Network 5: Double Team DS)]

Sometime between Viridi's intervention and the recent news in regard to said alien invasions, the Contras had been honing their skills to keep themselves in tip-top shape. In fact, Bill and Lance had their M16 machine guns, or rather the Contra Rifles, upgraded with the same 5-hit barrier features that Aaron's own Contra Rifle and Ami's Bomberman Watch already possess, in addition to the 30-hit Konami Barriers the original four have had since World War III. Yet somehow, Bill and Lance felt they weren't completely equal with Aaron and Ami in terms of their powers, so they requested Blaze Bomber and Penny Crygor to bestow upon them their own Final Smashes that work with their hi-tech rifles.

Indeed they had been granted said Final Smashes, along with a special bonus, when Christmas came.

"Alrighty, Bill," began Penny, "Blaze, grandpa and I worked hard to make sure there aren't any kinks in the Final Smash attacks we've implemented into your Contra Rifles, like those that Aaron and Ami's gadgets already have. Your Final Smash is the Spread Gun EX, and Lance's is the Homing Missiles EX."

"The Spread Gun EX is, simply put, twice as powerful as the regular Spread Gun and covers more space," explained Blaze Bomber. "It lasts 20 seconds and will undoubtedly take off your current power-up to prevent any possible overcharge, similar to how the Charge Shot functions with Aaron's Contra Rifle. However, while your Final Smash is active, it won't be taken away no matter how much damage you take. Even if it's just a tiny scratch inflicted upon you, your Spread Gun EX doesn't go away until 20 seconds have passed. Still, you must take into account the same restrictions."

"In other words, Lance and I can't turn on our barriers for the next 30 minutes afterwards, right?"

"Precisely. It's all part of the fail-safe mechanism to ensure your Contra Rifles don't explode. And Lance, your Homing Missiles EX has a higher rate of fire and extra firepower; the positives and negatives on Bill's Final Smash also apply to yours. But here's the special bonus to make up for your guns' inability to carry two weapons at once: we've even installed Hookshot attachments!"

"See the ones beneath your Contra Rifles on the front end?" Bill and Lance understood Penny's question and looked at the attachments as she continued, "They work just like the Hookshot Link often acquires in his Hyrulean adventures."

"As in, we can stun enemies momentarily, grapple to hard-to-reach places or each other in case of trouble," said Lance. "Did I say that right?"

"Technically, yes," answered Blaze Bomber, "but I wouldn't depend on them as a substitute to your Contra Rifles' current power-ups unless absolutely necessary. The reason I'm saying this is because the Hookshots can only stun large enemies, whereas they'll take out the smaller ones and break open any power-up pods we transport in your direction. Keep in mind also, while they won't work against every enemy threat you come across, they won't ever be lost should either of you get hit."

"Heh, that's a relief," said Arctic Bomber.

"We'll take good care of these upgrades you've given our Contra Rifles...and thanks." Then Lance turned over to Aaron and Ami. "Sorry if Bill and I doubted ourselves in front of you."

"That's okay, buddy," assured Aaron. "You're both still powerful allies in your own way."

"Guess you can think of the upgrades as Christmas gifts," added Ami.

Bill nodded with a smile. "I suppose you could say that. So, anybody up for checking out 9-Volt's video game company?"

"Sure thing!" beamed Penny. "It's a big responsibility for a little kid like him, but I'm glad he's chipping in with his friends out of kindness. Between you and me, I think Mr. Wario should take lessons from him and Phoebe."

[End BGM]

--------------------

LATER, ON THE DAY BEFORE JANUARY 4, 20XX...

[Interlude BGM: GF Battle Theme (Metroid Prime 3: Corruption)]

Team Spectre, this is Dropship Command. What is your situation?

"Commander, we've been discovered by the remnants of Red Falcon's butchers, but we got our hands on something they've been doing experiments with lately! We have to warn the Contras in person right away!"

Copy that. ETA two minutes at rendezvous point. I'm going to be a sitting duck with all my weapon systems running low, so you dam well better be there when I arrive, got it?

A small group of human soldiers, disguised as the Red Falcon Empire's alien grunts, were on the run across the jungles of the Galuga Archipelago. No doubt they came under fire by enemy mechs and gunmen alike; thus they mustered all they could to keep the opposition astray long enough for them to reach the rendezvous point. Exactly two minutes later, their dropship had already arrived with its hatch open on the underside, hovering a few feet above ground just before it made a soft landing.

Dropship Command here, but my weapon systems are down. I'm getting the hell outta here.

"Negative, sir; we need more time! Some of my men are seriously injured, and I'm doing everything possible to--"

You're out of time! I'm not getting paid enough to die, and also, your asses are fired. The commander closed his dropship's hatch and took off, leaving the stranded spies to die.

"...Y'know, there's still room in hell for your sorry carcass. The Contras will get you for betraying the Colonial Marines!" The injured squad leader eventually ran out of ammunition, and thus she and her soldiers were finally shot dead.

[End BGM]

Look on the bright side, kid: you get to keep all the money you were paid for this job. These were the last words rung out on the squad leader's communicator before it was shut down by a stray bullet.

END PROLOGUE

Posted by: WarioMan May 8 2016, 02:20 AM
Chapter 1: A traitor in our midst

[Briefing BGM: Mission Briefing (Star Fox: Assault)]

"...And so you see, our spies inside the remnants of Red Falcon's butchers did not return alive, but we were able to receive from their transmission that Sniper Bomber, Axe Bomber and Volcano Bomber have been very busy remodeling the Galuga Archipelago, and are already planning to launch an attack on Cyber City, Australia and Tokyo, Japan. But that's not the only reason I've come to your lab in Diamond City."

Ami gasped at what the gray-haired representative in shades of the Colonial Marines just said. "Tokyo's my hometown!"

"Reports also indicate they're getting help from some of Earth's most dangerous war criminals. Now, I am certain you guys recall the following..."

The Contras looked at the photos of the aforementioned criminals, the first in line being a large, muscular man about seven feet tall in a military uniform, displaying several badges up front. "Major Deathbringer...We've fought this scumbag before, Commander Doyle," said Aaron.

"Whereas Billy and I crossed swords with that Gerudo pirate, Captain Octane, long before we formed our justice group alongside Aaron and Ami," Lance noted the picture of the red-haired woman dressed in red like a belly dancer, bearing a pair of scimitars and a piece of jewelry on her forehead.

"Most important of all," the chief continued as he displayed a photo of a middle-aged man in black armor with a red cape, muscular build, and long black hair. The man's moustache and beard were enough to show that he was in his 50s. "Colonel Bahamut. I believe you've all heard of him."

Penny could only recall little of what she had learned from her grandfather, Dr. Crygor, sometime ago. "Didn't that guy used to take part in the Alien Wars?"

"Used to be a war hero, whereas the two of you," Doyle eyed Bill and Lance as he went along, "risked your lives on behalf of our planet Earth to crush Red Falcon's evil plans at the source."

"And helped Mona save 9-Volt's life along the way..." Dr. Crygor recalled.

"Mainly by kicking my sorry butt," said Arctic Bomber. "Heh, that's what I got for being that stupid to serve Red Falcon and his Hate Bombers, by randomly picking on anybody I saw fit. By the way, sir..."

Doyle interrupted her by placing his right hand at waist level. "You need not admit your wrongdoings any longer. We of the United States Colonial Marines already know you personally reformed yourself by helping the Contras, and the good soldiers of Delta Force, defeat the Five Dastardly Bombers off the face of the Earth and put an end to the Alien Wars once and for all. Which reminds me, seeing how it's been over five-and-a-half months since Aaron, Ami, Bill and Lance posted bail, you should be off probation by now."

"In other words, you used to be a hardened, albeit bratty criminal," said Blaze Bomber, "but no more - never again. I, on the other hand, was brainwashed until the Contras set me free during their time on Dinosaur Land, home of the Yoshis. Now, you were saying about Colonel Bahamut?"

"A while after the first half of the Alien Wars, Bahamut went rogue and staged a coup d'etat to overthrow the government. His plan was stopped in time, but he fled and was never heard from again...at least, until today. Our spies indicated he had since partnered with Dr. Geo Mandrake - a scientific genius gone bad, if you ask me - and are not only cloning aliens, but also importing what they believed to be humanoid demons with crab-like claws for appendages, others having scythes on their left arm. Here's the real shocker: Colonel Bahamut's even bribing all kinds of human terrorists from all around the world, let alone corrupt soldiers, into serving the Red Falcon Empire."

Bill shook hands with the chief. "Commander Doyle, I do believe you've found the right heroes for the job, and we promise to avenge Team Spectre."

"Not only that, but you must also track down the dropship commander that was supposed to pick them up. Apparently he left them to die on purpose despite his claims about the dropship's weapon systems being inoperable, leaving us no choice but to brand him a traitor. However, I think it's best that you guys investigate him first. If he truly has turned..."

"Then we'll capture or mash him good." Arctic pounded her fists against each other. "He can't get away with pulling a Pigma on his own troops on purpose!" She was quickly met with blank stares. "...Y'know, Pigma? The greedy swine who betrayed Star Fox out of love for money?"

"I'm sure we remember that evil pig all too well," said Penny, "but this isn't the best time right now. Still, you do make a point. So, who are we to arrest if we can avoid a dogfight, Commander Doyle?"

"Captain Apex of the dropship he used to get over to the Galuga Archipelago. Our scanners have last spotted him heading towards Japan, presumably overseeing a robot attack on Tokyo. I fear he may be doing more than that, so your first priority's to bring him to justice. Between you and me, I don't trust what he reported on the radio. Good luck, and godspeed."

Arctic Bomber pondered the words "good luck" and "godspeed." "Aren't they the same thing?"

"That doesn't matter now, Arctic," Ami told her. "Let's kick alien butt."

[End BGM]

--------------------

[Stage BGM: Intro Stage (Mega Man Xtreme 2)]

Mission 1: Tracing the traitor
Reports have indicated that Captain Apex, commander of the dropship, may have thrown us over for the enemy. If this is true, the Contras may have to take him out, seeing how he intently left Team Spectre of the United States Colonial Marines to die on Galuga Island.
January 5, 20XX
4:00 AM


You guys are now over the eastern, coastal side of Japan, Penny Crygor's voice spoke over the Contra Cruiser and CrygorCopter's radios, where the recent attacks are said to be taking place. What's your situation there?

Bill replied, "Aaron, Ami, Lance and I are about to make the drop-off here, while Arctic's gonna accompany Blaze and Yuffie to deal with the alien attacks in Cyber City, Australia. Can you offer us support?"

Okay. I've already asked my granddad to call someone we know to fill in temporarily at Diamond Arcade World until we're able to resolve the situation. In the meantime, I've got the power-up generator ready to send you the usual weapons from time to time.

"Thanks, Pen," acknowledged Lance. "And it looks like the news reports were dead-on: Tokyo and Cyber City are being attacked by demons from the underworld, skeletal robots that look like mass-produced T-800s from the Terminator movies, and even corrupt human soldiers. Something fishy's going on and I don't like this one bit, but we'll check it out anyways."

Just remember, you guys haven't thwarted any global-scale invasions in a while since World War III, so try not to get too wild and bite off more than you can chew.

"Don't worry, Penny; we'll be careful. Let's hope things don't get too hectic that we have to rely upon Godzilla for the job. Bill Rizer of the good Contras, signing off." The radio on each craft shut off afterwards. "Alright, we've just let Penny know we made it safely. What we gotta do first, like Commander Doyle told us back at the lab, is to track Captain Apex's dropship, and capture or destroy him."

Finding me won't be necessary, someone else's voice rang up on the radio. So, has that old man been lying to you lowly pawns again?

"Define 'lowly pawn'," rebuffed Aaron. "Now why did you leave Team Spectre to die when you could have just picked them up?"

Because my weapon systems were down, that's why. Besides, Colonel Bahamut pays me better.

"Called it!" blurted Arctic Bomber. "You really DID pull a Pigma on them after all!"

I'm going to ignore whatever rubbish came out of your mouth, girl. I've known Bahamut all my life even before the coup d'etat; in fact, I was the right-hand man in his squad during the Alien Wars. He'll be in charge soon enough, and what he says goes, for he beckons all to rejoice in Red Falcon's resurrection from hell! Unlike your chief's beliefs, the colonel strongly feels that the powerful are always destined to crush the weak. But since it is obviously clear you'd rather side with the weak, you can all die right here.

[End BGM]
[Boss BGM: Middle Boss Battle (The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time)]

"There'll be no money for you, selfish bastard! You're going down!" Arctic pulled open the Contra Cruiser's sunroof and jumped out to attack the dropship, but Bill and Lance were quick to stop her.

"No, Arctic. You stay with me and Ami while we take the wheel. Bill and Lance have their Hookshots now, remember?"

Arctic sighed, "Oh, alright, Aaron. Just make sure they get out there and smash that traitor's blasted dropship for us, will ya?" The very moment Bill and Lance grappled their way to the cockpit of the dropship and kicked their way in, Apex deployed a giant space centipede.

Yuffie was the first to take notice. "Hey, wait a minute! You said your weapon systems were--"

I lied. Too bad you won't live to tell the story! The space centipede flew its way across the sky in hopes of colliding with the Contra Cruiser and CrygorCopter, whilst firing laser bursts from its tail.

"Aaron, steer around to avoid that alien's attacks while I pummel its segments with my Fire Bombs," said Ami.

"Will do, Ami. But when you can, I'd say try freezing its head with your Ice Bombs. Think back to Contra ReBirth."

"Ahh, of course! I'll keep that in mind. You keep dodging the attacks from both the centipede and Apex's dropship until then! Might wanna try being steady too, though..."

But Arctic had an idea of her own, however boneheaded it be: she picked up Aaron's Contra Rifle and opened a window in her backseat. "Wait! Arctic, don't!!"

"Trust me on this, Ami. You bomb, I shoot."

--------------------

Inside the enemy dropship, Bill and Lance were wrestling to get Apex off the seat of the cockpit. "You! You're a disgrace to your planet, let alone your country!"

"And why should I give a dam, Bill? Colonel Bahamut paid me good cash for such an easy job!"

"Even if it means throwing your own posse over for his twisted purposes?!" retorted Lance.

"HAH! His orders are absolute, and so are the Hate Bombers'! Red Falcon demands tribute to be risen from the dead, and by killing all of you and the nosy Colonial Marines, he will be pleased!"

"Why the hell are you doing this? You were one of the best in the Colonial Marines!"

"Like I'd ever wanna tell YOU worthless maggots! Sure, I left Bahamut when he rebelled against the government...only to come right back years later when he offered me a place at the table."

"So you pretended to have sided with the Colonial Marines..." summarized Bill.

Apex grinned evilly. "That's the idea, but this is all the information you're gonna get from me! You wanna find out more, come and get the man I've looked up to all my life as a mentor!" Reaching out for the controls, he tried to press the self-destruct button, intent on destroying the evidence so that nobody else would suspect whether Apex had really betrayed the human race. However, Lance was quick to prod him on the back of his neck with the butt end of his Contra Rifle, knocking the traitor unconscious. Then, using the Hookshot to keep himself from falling off, the red-clad Contra carried the evil commander to a nearby missile, strapping him onto it by the belt prior to climbing back into the cockpit.

"Killing me will not stop the colonel from fulfilling his desires with Red Falcon's Hate Bombers!"

"You seriously think they're gonna save you now?" rebuffed Lance. "You really ARE a fool!"

"Wh-what're you gonna do to me?"

Bill smirked. "What you did to the good guys you willingly left to die on Galuga Island. In other words...you're fired." Having grabbed a remote control from the cockpit, he pressed a button that launched a guided missile with Apex strapped onto it, sending him screaming as it flew all the way past the Contra Cruiser and the CrygorCopter. But rather than aim for the space centipede, Bill and Lance used the remote's joystick to guide the missile right back at the dropship instead. Once it was in perfect alignment, the blue-clad Contra crushed it in his bare hands and dropped it, making that his and Lance's cue to grapple back to the Contra Cruiser with their Hookshots at the very same moment that Ami and Arctic Bomber blew up the space centipede's head.

[End BGM]

As the monster broke up in pieces due to its head being completely destroyed, the guided missile made a direct hit on the enemy dropship, killing Apex instantly in the ensuing explosion that reduced the craft to a pile of metallic junk. Its smoldering remains eventually fell on top of the dead centipede, burning down its remains in the process, signaling the Contras' first victory in their campaign against the treacherous Colonel Bahamut.

--------------------

[Victory BGM: Mission Results (Star Fox: Assault)]

"Man, that giant centipede was getting annoying!" said Yuffie.

"You can say that again," agreed Blaze Bomber, "but at least we're lucky to have arrived at our destination unscathed. I've just got word from Commander Doyle that he's sending ten of his best men to give us a hand while Aaron, Ami, Bill and Lance clean house in Tokyo. Arctic, if you may?"

"Yeah, yeah. I'm glad I rode in the Contra Cruiser in case Ami needed me to help destroy that monster. Here's your Contra Rifle back, Aaron. You need it more than I do."

"Not a problem, Arctic. Be careful when you get to Cyber City, okay, fellas?"

Thus, Arctic jumped over to the CrygorCopter with the aid of Bill and Lance's Hookshots, and the group split into two teams to cover more ground, hoping it's not too late to prevent any further damage since Apex had slowed them down.

[End BGM]

TO BE CONTINUED...

Posted by: WarioMan Jun 13 2016, 03:48 AM
Chapter 2: The new rogue's gallery

[Interlude BGM: The Gestahl Empire (Final Fantasy VI Advance)]

"So...my longtime comrade since the coup d'etat has been blown out of existence."

A figure with a tall, muscular build, was the first to speak with the black-clad mastermind. "Is this true, Colonel Bahamut?"

NAME: Major Deathbringer (REAL NAME UNKNOWN)
GENDER: Male
PROFICIENCY: Brute strength, dual-wielding heavy weapons
WEAPON OF CHOICE: Negev (heavy machine gun; preferably two)
PREDICTED THREAT LEVEL: A (VERY DANGEROUS)


"Ehh, typical men like Apex, always charging head-on only to meet their own end," said a red-haired pirate captain. "Us Gerudo Pirates take pride in our work...that is, until the day Bill Rizer and Lance Bean got lucky enough to take out our dreaded S.S. Kraken, ending my reign of terror across the seven seas. Now, I'm going to get even with them and their new best friends...Aaron and Ami, was it?"

NAME: Captain Octane
GENDER: Female
PROFICIENCY: Piracy, swordplay
WEAPON OF CHOICE: Dual scimitars
PREDICTED THREAT LEVEL: B (LEGITIMATE THREAT)


"I remember those four do-gooders all too well..." brooded the half-man, half-alien known as Swampster the Terrible. Formerly a poacher, nowadays an assassin, from the day he joined the Red Falcon Empire as an excuse to exact his personal vendetta against the original Four Contras. He even used to be fully human before he had to undergo a surgery to survive death's door. "Ever since they ruined what was to be my greatest hunt ever, I've been made a laughingstock throughout the entire community of poachers! I was going to off the Yoshis living in Dinosaur Land, but the Contras just had to butt in and spoil my plan! I'll have you know my recent encounter with them - along with Blaze Bomber and Arctic Bomber - in the underworld was but a mere prelude in comparison to what's gonna happen tonight, if not tomorrow morning."

NAME: Swampster the Terrible
GENDER: Male
PROFICIENCY: Poaching
WEAPON OF CHOICE: Sniper rifles, and his illegally-modified Winchester Model 70
THREAT LEVEL: A (VERY DANGEROUS)


"Arctic Bomber, Arctic Bomber...just the name alone makes me want to obliterate her arrogant ass even more!" growled an alien cyborg with a yellow cobra emblem affixed to his forehead. Being the Venomous Oppressor as he called himself, he has had an obsession with killing Arctic Bomber ever since she pulled a Rambo on him during the events of World War III. "Hmph. That winter-loving child has no idea what we have in store for her and her new friends."

NAME: Lieutenant Yellow Cobra
GENDER: Male
PROFICIENCY: Piloting mechs (if necessary)
WEAPON OF CHOICE: His entire cybernetic body
THREAT LEVEL: A (VERY DANGEROUS)


The next in line resembled a giant pterodactyl, albeit with "flaming" amber eyes and thick, purple skin. He was feared across the galaxy as the supreme commander of an ongoing race of belligerent aliens known as the Space Pirates. Those who lived to tell the tale could only pray that an independent bounty hunter would show up and defeat him like always. That hunter was formerly a member of the Galactic Federation, nowadays seeking bounties as her profession. That very same hunter whose parents were mercilessly killed by the dragon on an Earth colony...

"If I may correct you, Yellow Cobra...all the pathetic heroes of this primitive mudball called Earth have no idea what we have in store for them. They shall hear the name Ridley and tremble before the might of the Space Pirates! We may have been chased out of worlds such as Zebes, but our cause shall live on!"

"Which we have most recently stationed in Cyber City, Australia, and Tokyo, Japan, to instigate an all-out invasion with an army of mass-produced Terminator robots at our disposal," said Colonel Bahamut. "If that feeble old man thinks he can count on these six Contras to stop us from spreading terror all over Earth, then he's sorely mistaken! Dr. Geo Mandrake, what is the status of our robot factories?"

"Fully operational and ready to overtake all of Cyber City and Tokyo," answered the elderly scientist in white. "The attacks are proceeding as planned, and I've already sent in a group of reprogrammed mercenaries as you ordered. If everything goes well, we should have no problem doing the same for Diamond City in the United States."

NAME: Dr. Geo Mandrake
GENDER: Male
PROFICIENCY: Alien experimentation
WEAPON OF CHOICE: N/A
PREDICTED THREAT LEVEL: UNKNOWN


Then, a mysterious blue robot walked inside the briefing room filled to the brim with glass tanks, each containing different alien creatures. "I suppose you won't be needing me to do the dirty deed after all, right? Let me get this straight: I've been wanting to get even with Aaron, Ami, Bill and Lance for a long time, and I don't mean because my former master was slain in front of them after they bested me in combat."

"Wrong, whoever you are," interrupted Swampster. "It is I who will personally kill them off the face of the Earth!"

"Save it, poacher. As I recall, you're supposed to supervise the Terminator production for the attack upon Tokyo, while Yellow Cobra takes charge in Cyber City."

Swampster growled in response. "Let me remind you just this once, Regulus: I'm not the kind of person who takes orders, nor do I enjoy working with others. I only joined Red Falcon just so I can blow the Contras' blasted asses to kingdom come! They ALWAYS spoil my fun, but I'll be the one who spoils theirs and you know it!"

"And let me remind you just this once: I don't give a dam."

"Why you...! If you weren't so 'cool and collected', I'd poach the living crap outta you right off the bat!"

"Enough!" boomed Colonel Bahamut. "I don't care who kills Aaron, Ami, Bill, Lance, Blaze and/or Arctic. I just want them dealt with swiftly, although you're more than welcome to do it painfully slow."

NAME: Colonel Bahamut
GENDER: Male
PROFICIENCY: Dictatorship
WEAPON OF CHOICE: UNKNOWN
PREDICTED THREAT LEVEL: S (100% DEADLY)


"And Swampster, you will do precisely as you're told, regardless of whoever tells you what's what, be it me, Sniper Bomber, Axe Bomber, Volcano Bomber, Dr. Mandrake, or Ridley. Let the Space Pirates have their fun killing people. Do I make myself clear?" The poacher reluctantly agreed to his master's orders prior to storming off. Yellow Cobra, Octane and Deathbringer walked out next, followed by Ridley flying upwards to patrol the skies above Bahamut's base of operations. Regulus, however, stayed behind to gather his thoughts.

I certainly hope you four are well-prepared, because I don't think whatever tactics you pulled to defeat the tyrannical Sirius are going to save you this time.

"Just out of curiosity, Regulus: why, exactly, did you choose to join my ranks? You could just get rid of Aaron, Ami, Bill and Lance yourself and not worry about putting up with anybody's...insubordination. I despise that as much as I hate Doyle and these Contras the Hate Bombers have been telling me so much about."

Regulus had his back turned, though he raised his left hand. "...I have my reasons you probably wouldn't understand. They hurt my pride the very moment they bested me in battle one time. I guess you could say I underestimated them that time, so I'll make sure to observe them carefully on how they think up their strategy, and how well they use their sophisticated gadgets to oppose terror. And when the time comes, I'll bring them before you and Dr. Mandrake."

"Hmm hmm hmm...Understandable. Very well, do with them what you wish if you see them face-to-face again. Just make sure they suffer the same humiliation you did..."

And with that, Regulus stepped out into the darkness of the base without bidding either commander farewell. Unlike Bahamut's other subordinates, he did not harbor any form of hatred for the Contras nor the pleasure of killing them; just the fact that he seemed more concerned about being the strongest warrior in the galaxy and regaining his pride at the same time.

On the other hand, Bahamut had his own thoughts. "Bringing in an army of cutthroats, let alone the desert men and Space Pirates, was just the beginning, Mandrake."

"That I must agree, colonel. With my own dark experiments to aid us, the Hate Bombers will be pleased to see Lord Red Falcon's resurrection from hell itself. The only thing that could stop him is death..."

"...But when he returns with the aid of all that was provided for us by the Space Pirates, even death can't stop his reign of terror anymore. The pathetic people of Earth will soon beg us to become their lords of all creation! So, Doyle...what are you waiting for? Come and get me like you did back when I revolted against the government...if you can! Oh, but you disappoint me by sending in your new batch of lapdogs, the Contras, to fight your battles. Ah, but no matter, because I assure you that they'll meet their doom soon enough."

With his cackle echoing across the lair, Colonel Bahamut took his leave while Dr. Mandrake got busy with the dark experiments.

[End BGM]

TO BE CONTINUED...

Posted by: WarioMan Sep 5 2016, 10:08 PM
Chapter 3: Tokyo revisited

[Interlude BGM: Magitek Research Facility (Final Fantasy VI Advance)]

"Look at those four...taking charge of the assault like they're so cool...I thought I already made it clear that I should be the one to kill the Contras! Not those four Bomber-twits from space!"

"Swampster, I'm not going to tell you again," warned Regulus.

"What do YOU know about Aaron, Ami, Bill and Lance?! You'd happen to be on THEIR side, wouldn't you?! Well, I'm not surprised if that were the case, since you seem to care about them rather than let me end their lives for taking away everything important to me! It all started just two weeks after their vacation on Dinosaur Land, and yet before they butted heads with that blithering idiot Purple Basilisk...I was gonna pull off the biggest poach on the planet that would surely put all the other poachers to shame: the famed Yoshis. That coulda fetched a whole lotta cash in the black market, had the Contras not taught them how to defend themselves! What's worse, is they even helped the Yoshis take out all my equipment and landed me in prison! Now, I'm about ready to get even once and for all, and nobody is gonna order me around while I'm at it. I've waited long enough for this moment, even if do look more like a Lizalfos than a human nowadays..."

Regulus stood silent, all the while listening to the story. "...Interesting. Now, if you, Yellow Cobra, Deathbringer and Octane have nothing else for me..." He teleported himself out of the robot factory, leaving the ornery poacher to collect his thoughts.

Just you wait, self-righteous blue fool...I'll be the one who kills them first, and when I'm through, you're next. I don't know how you talked the Colonel into letting you join the ranks, but the next time you tell me what's what, you'll be lacking more than your pride!

[End BGM]

--------------------

[Briefing BGM: Operation Map (Military Madness)]

Mission 2: A snowy beginning
Somewhere in Tokyo, lies an illegal robot factory mass-producing killer androids for the sole purpose of destroying civilization. The Contras must put an end to this immediately.
January 5, 20XX
4:30 AM


Not long after splitting up to cover more ground, the original four Contras checked to see what power-ups they needed to have on hand for the next mission: Homing Missiles and Crash Missiles for Aaron, and the Spread Gun for both Bill and Lance. No telling what they're up against, as any intelligent warrior would say.

"According to Penny's intel," Aaron rephrased, "the illegal robot factory we're supposed to shut down should be about 457 meters due north. That's 500 yards, so to speak."

Ami nodded in agreement, readying her Bomberman Watch to help her three fellow Contras take out the enemy onslaught, consisting of corrupt human soldiers, alien troopers with crab-like claws for weapons, and skeletal robots truly resembling mass-produced T-800s. "Space Pirates and Terminator robots? Figures Red Falcon's goons would ever think of bringing them here to invade Earth!"

"Obviously they must have stolen, or rather pirated, Purple Basilisk's technology that enabled him to summon boss characters from their respective games on Vaati's behalf," theorized Bill. Suddenly, he and the other Contras received a phone call from an unknown person.

Aaron, Ami, Bill, Lance, do you read me? asked a gruff voice.

"Who is this?" responded Bill. "And how'd you get your radio frequency?"

"Must be the remaining spy who didn't get killed by Apex's treachery," assumed Lance.

Who or what I am isn't important now. What's really important is that you're about to come up against four robotic assassins, called the Four Bomber Kings.

"You mean the ones who showed up in Super Bomberman 4?" stated Ami.

You could say that. I can't go into any further detail since Colonel Bahamut has yet to know of my whereabouts. Mihaele knows what dangers await me if I'm found out. Oh, and watch out for Regulus as you fight your way to Galuga Island; I've heard he was with Swampster just before he left Japan.

Upon hearing Regulus's name, Aaron exclaimed, "What?! But we haven't seen or heard from him in months since the day he helped us defeat the evil King Sirius!"

Somehow, he's managed to talk them into giving him a chance to get even with you guys...Crap, the Colonel's coming back! I must break contact, so the only other thing I can tell you now is to watch your step. With that, the stranger hung up, prompting Aaron, Ami, Bill and Lance to begin their mission.

[End BGM]
[Stage BGM: Guerrilla War (Ogre Battle: The March of The Black Queen)]

The T-800s approached, ready to punch and fire away with no mercy or remorse in accordance to their programming, their red glowing eyes signaling that the Contras can't afford to lose their power-ups until after they reached the robot factory, let alone the man in charge. Fortunately, they remembered to wear their winter coats to keep themselves from freezing up...though quite strangely, the robots weren't affected. Whatever the case, the Contras had to fight on and blow them away. No sooner than a few minutes in were they surprised by the appearance of four robotic assassins, as the mysterious caller warned them about.

"Stand aside, everybody," called the reddish android, "and let us handle them. You destroy everything else!"

"Bazooka Bomber?" guessed Aaron.

"You got it! We're the Four Bomber Kings!"

"Lady Bomber!" stated the orange female.

"Jet Bomber!" followed the blue male with a jetpack on his back.

"Hammer Bomber!" said the green male with a spiked ball-like mace on his left arm. "Colonel Bahamut and Dr. Mandrake have sent us to crush you!"

Ami pulled out her Fire Bombs, pumping up one at a time by focusing her energy. "Then each of us will take on one at a time. Aaron, you handle Jet Bomber, and I'll cross bombs with Lady Bomber."

"I've got Bazooka Bomber," acknowledged Bill.

"That leaves me with Hammer Bomber," said Lance. "Let's get it on so we can shut down the evil factory."

That's what you think, thought Bazooka Bomber, literally opening fire by shooting blue flames from the bazooka attachment on his right arm. Aaron and Ami certainly did not recall his flames in that particular color; usually it was reddish-orange, yet still deadly to the touch. He wasn't the only one who had been upgraded, for Hammer Bomber's mace now had electricity arcing all around it whenever he'd swing it at his enemies, which could double up the pain had Lance not been careful enough to avoid it. Jet Bomber's jetpack now sported machine gun turrets, followed by his capability to carpet-bomb the streets like a B-17 Bomber, inflicting damage upon everyone within range. Lady Bomber pulled out a pair of flaming sais, thereby putting Ami to the test. Despite these upgrades, the Contras found an opening and turned the tables on the Four Bomber Kings...

--------------------

"I don't know about you guys," said Bill, "but these renegade Bombermen are tough."

"Still," wondered Aaron, "I can't help thinking maybe this fight was too good to be true..."

"What do you mean?"

"He means the battle we just won," corrected Ami, "was perhaps a little too easy..."

[End BGM]

Lady Bomber taunted, "Too easy? HA! We're just getting started! You really thought our new weapons were all we had? Well, GET A LOAD OF THIS!!"

[Danger BGM: Team Rocket Encounter! (Pokemon: The Johto Journeys)]

The Four Bomber Kings woke up from the ground, shaking off all the damage dealt upon them as they glowed a blue aura around their bodies. Then they continued their attacks, only now their power and defense were increased twice as much, and the Contras were in serious trouble! All their shots and bombs also had the strange blue glow, whilst they were twice as fast. Neither Aaron, Ami, Bill nor Lance were prepared for the oncoming travesty, unable to defend themselves against said glow.

"How do you like the new blood flowing through our bodies?" boasted Jet Bomber. "Colonel Bahamut and Dr. Mandrake went to every bit of detail to make sure we're ready for you!"

Hammer Bomber added, "So YOU'RE the Contras who have been giving our masters so much trouble? What a joke!"

Bill grunted, "dam, these guys are tougher than we thought...!"

"Isn't it obvious, Billy dear?" assured Lady Bomber. "The good doctor did what Bagular could not when he summoned us to assassinate Shiro and Kuro."

"Then Chief Doyle was right about him all along," summarized Aaron.

Bazooka Bomber couldn't help but scoff at the downed adversary's remark. "Has that old man been telling you all this gossip about the colonel and the doctor going rogue?"

Lance replied, "That 'old man' you speak of is Commander Doyle...He knows all about their sheer madness ever since the failed coup..."

"Shut up, Earth monkeys!" shouted Jet Bomber. "You and your boss don't know jack about anything! When Red Falcon rises again, he's gonna make us his loyal generals alongside the Hate Bombers!"

Lady Bomber twirled around in a taunting manner. "Thanks to Dr. Mandrake's modifications, we're virtually invincible, but the very best part is: we also know how to predict your every move!"

Ami groaned weakly, surprised that even her pumped-up bombs were no match for the assassins. "Ugh, no kidding...Guess Red Falcon's goons have been stepping up their game lately."

GANG-WAY! called out a voice not unfamiliar to the Contras. Never fear, Yumi's here! Flying aboard the Puffy bus were, to Ami's relief, Yumi and their manager Kaz. They fired a stream of laser balls at the T-800s, Space Pirates and corrupt soldiers attempting to gang up on the her downed friends. Take that, space scum! So, how are you guys doing? I thought we'd give you a hand since you seem to be in a load of trouble now. This IS my...excuse me, our home country, even if I'm from Osaka and not Tokyo. Don't worry, I told the chief everything.

"That's good...but I'm afraid you're too late. Something's affecting our bodies..."

[End BGM]

"The universal Geiger counter Blaze Bomber gave us before we disembarked should tell us something...oh no! It can't be!"

Ami became concerned about her best friend. "What is it, Aaron?"

"It...it's not possible. I thought all of its traces were long gone after Samus blew up the evil planet Phaaze. Our Geiger counter says there's Phazon within range! Something is very strange here. Doyle, Dr. Crygor and Penny need to know about this right away!"

"Could this be the substance Team Spectre tried to warn us about?"

Hammer Bomber stomped on Lance's downed body in the gut. "You mean tried AND failed, Mr. Bean! And we're not telling you anymore about it!"

[Boss BGM: Batman VS Mr. Freeze (Batman: Vengeance)]

All of a sudden, a deadly rocket streaked across the streets, blowing the Four Bomber Kings away by surprise. MY HUNT, MY RULES!

Lady Bomber growled in response over her communicator. "Dammit Swampster, Regulus said to stay inside the factory! You're leaving it unsupervised! Unguarded, tops!"

"Plus, it's not easy to buff my whole body, let alone my jetpack, if it's been damaged!" screamed Jet Bomber.

It became clear to the Contras that the angry voice belonged to the greedy, jealous poacher they knew all too well, and his Australian accent to boot. However, never before had they seen him so...ill-tempered, if not since their last encounter. Regulus, schmegulus, it's ALWAYS about that overblown warrior! And I don't care about some bloody Terminator army or whatever the hell these robots are. I'll show the Colonel I'm more fit to be First Lieutenant than him, so BUTT OUT!

"Lords Sniper Bomber, Axe Bomber and Volcano Bomber aren't going to like this, Swampster!" threatened Bazooka Bomber. "We are reporting your blatant insubordination and bad attitude right now!"

Swampster flew in with a jetpack on, armed with a handheld rocket launcher and his illegally-modified Winchester rifle, the former two of which the Four Bomber Kings knew he would try to steal. "INSUBORDINATE THIS!!" He switched "his" rocket launcher to heat-seeking mode in addition to injecting a syringe full of Phazon into his body, and pelted the Four Bomber Kings nonstop with his rockets, for he was in no mood for poaching until after he'd taken out the competition. And he knew how much he hated having to compete with every other hunter just to be the best of the best. The assassins fought back, but Bazooka Bomber ordered against continuing this now-pointless conflict. The Red Falcon Empire's invasion on Japan was declared a total bust due to the half-Lizalfos's disobedience, not to mention his overwhelming, unhealthy obsession with being the first to kill the Contras. On the other hand, Yumi and Kaz found the opportunity to take out the robot factory, but not before calling Doyle to bring in half the amount of troops meant for Arctic, Blaze and Yuffie's assistance in Australia.

There was absolutely no telling how serious the recreated Phazon can be, even though its main source on the far side of the universe was already no more. It also didn't help that Team Spectre couldn't make it back alive, leaving the good guys with no idea how or where Colonel Bahamut and Dr. Mandrake acquired the materials necessary to recreate Phazon. It was all up to Arctic, Blaze and Yuffie to stop the attack on Australia in time to render aid to the original four Contras, if the campaign to save Earth is to remain in play.

[End BGM]

TO BE CONTINUED...

Posted by: WarioMan Oct 7 2016, 04:53 AM
Chapter 4: Australia under siege

[Danger BGM: Batman VS Mr. Freeze (Batman: Vengeance)]

Swampster the Terrible, still brimming with "Phazon Madness" as the Space Pirates coined it in their previous campaigns of terror, continued damaging the Four Bomber Kings until they were near death to the point of aborting the invasion on Japan entirely, forcing them to teleport out of here. The lone-wolf terrorist, on the other hand, couldn't care less, so long as he - and only he, in his own twisted mind and soul - carried on his chance to personally obliterate his most hated enemies once and for all. Never at any point did he ever forget the times the Contras thwarted his plans, let alone the day he attempted to endanger the Yoshis thriving on Dinosaur Land. The next thing he did was kick Aaron, Ami, Bill and Lance when they were down and infected with Phazon, maintaining a crazed smile on his face all the way.

"C'mon, Contras! Where's your usual desire to save Earth?!" He kicked them again, one after another, never giving an inch as he went on with his insane brutality. "Don't you wanna try and stop me like you always did before?!" And again. "HAH! Morons! I aimed to be rich among other international poachers, and you two," he stared daggers at Bill and Lance, "just wouldn't stop chasing me all over the world from time to time! Then the day I plotted my greatest hunt ever, and all four of you crushed it and tossed me in that bloody pig sty of a cell!" Swampster continued once again to kick the Contras when they were still trying to get up in spite of the injuries and the Phazon affliction, whereas his eyes glowed a much brighter blue than before. "Oh, and the time I got the respect I deserved by assisting Lord Red Falcon and his Hate Bombers so I could get another chance at killing you? Yeah, good times, just the way I remember...even if that rogue Arctic Bomber did go on a rampage one time and left me and Yellow Cobra for dead. But personally, that moment you trapped us in Polybius by severing its link to Purple Basilisk's pathetic excuse for an underworld base is NOTHING compared to my humiliating losses by your hand! Now it's YOUR turn to feel MY pain, with a little help from - you guessed it - Phazon! This drug's long-awaited power is mine at last!"

Little did he know there was a mysterious stranger in a black cloak nearby, watching closely as if to observe the attempted murder. "By the way, give my regards to Magnet Bomber if you run into him in hell. That overconfident idiot never deserved to be one of the Five Dastardly Bombers to begin with, even before you and your friends killed them along with Crasher and Blaster. How those two are this Zeromus character reincarnated is beyond me, but who cares? I'm about to succeed where they failed, this time for good! Then I'll make Regulus think twice before he bosses me around! I should be First Lieutenant, not him! Oh well, at least you'll get acquainted again in hell, seeing how he happens to know you."

Just then, a black blur smacked him hard in the face like lightning, sending him sprawling backward and losing his grip on the illegally-modded Winchester and the stolen RPG. "Not if I can help it!"

"Grrr...I don't know who you are or where you're from, but you just made the biggest mistake of your bloody life!" The cloaked stranger pulled out a teleportation device and grabbed ahold of the downed Contras. "Hey, that's my teleporter you're stealing! Give it back right now!"

"How about no? Terrorists like you deserve to be defeated for such heinous acts against Earth." Then the stranger activated the teleporter, whisking him and the Contras to safety.

Swampster punched the concrete ground in fury, having lost yet another chance to exact his personal vendetta against Aaron, Ami, Bill and Lance. "You may have gotten off easy this time, but just you wait. I'll find a way to track your bloody carcasses, and finish where I started..." With his teleportation device stolen, and the invasion fully aborted despite his obliviousness, he was forced to call in Sniper Bomber to pull him out of here. His vengeance would have to wait, as he was about to receive a severe reprimand for friendly fire, insubordination and deliberately leaving one of Red Falcon's Terminator production factories unsupervised, much less unguarded. Said factory was then destroyed as soon as backup arrived to assist Yumi and Kaz by picking up where the Contras left off.

[End BGM]

But before he could even try to steal some change from random passerbys in order to use the nearest pay phone available (and not destroyed during the invasion), another android teleported in; a purple one at that, albeit without a cape unlike Brain Bomber. "Huh? ...Oh, it's you, Great Bomber."

"The colonel and doctor will see you," he said with a firm voice, grabbing the lone-wolf terrorist by the shoulders, "now."

--------------------

[Relief BGM: Calamari Hangar (Star Wars Rogue Squadron II: Rogue Leader)]

"Uuugh...wh-where are we?" groaned Ami.

"Take it easy, you guys," answered the cloaked stranger. "You're safe now. It's a miracle I was able to lock on to your vehicle when I teleported you out of harm's way."

"But...what about that robot factory? We have to--"

"Your friends are already taking it out as we speak. We're lucky the Red Falcon Empire called off the terrorist attack, simply because of Swampster's insubordination. I watched everything and took action...and yes, I'm the one who tipped you off about the Four Bomber Kings and Regulus. The guy seems to know you pretty well, or so I heard."

Bill, rubbing his throbbing head from the pain, asked the stranger, "Who are you, anyway?"

Thinking for a moment, he replied, "Let's just say...Z."

"Z..." pondered Aaron.

"Sorry I kept our phone call short without introducing myself; there just wasn't time to explain without being discovered. Can any of you still drive?"

"I...think so..." said Lance. "Aaron, what does our Geiger counter say about the Phazon Sickness?"

The co-leader analyzed carefully, in addition to looking up the Internet with Ami on their smartphones. "According to these, our Phazon readings indicate about...10%. This is only the first stage of Phazon Corruption, also known as Phazon Fever, Phazon Madness, and Phazon Sickness. All there is for us to know, is self-generation of Phazon from bodily systems with no negative effects, so we should be able to survive as long as we don't continue getting infected like that. Before I passed out alongside ourselves, I barely caught a glimpse of Swampster's Phazon readings on our converted Geiger counter. I think it was somewhere between 50% and 75%...might have been a bit less, but that's all I remember seeing before he started kicking us over and over."

Ami read a few other parts of the analysis next, "Stage two says there's loss of awareness, uncontrollable Hypermode use, and minor distortion of facial features. But it gets even worse from here, because stage three has increased aggressiveness, extreme nausea and vomiting, Phazon addiction, changes in eye color and vine-like Phazon growths on the person's face...I'd rather not read the rest of it beyond here. Just thinking of what'll happen to us if Red Falcon's goons continue pelting us with Phazon-fueled attacks gives me the creeps..."

"My guess is Swampster's just a bit close to 75% Phazon Corruption, judging the way he deliberately displayed his extreme noncooperation by blasting his own cohorts out of the way just to kill us. On top of that...I think Colonel Bahamut and Dr. Mandrake are recreating Phazon with the intention to monopolize all drug rings around the world. They must want to see its potential, compared to the original which was gone along with planet Phaaze, before they sell it to unsuspecting victims and petty thugs alike. Whatever potential they're cooking up, I can tell it would undoubtedly give Shadaloo a run for its money...at least, whatever's left of that organization and M. Bison himself."

"In other words," announced Bill, "we gotta crack down on Phazon Madness before it spreads all over the Earth, and we gotta do it fast before Phazon itself kills us. I cannot stress this enough, but we have got to be more evasive than what we're used to, especially if we expect to avoid racking up anymore of its Corruption within our bodies, let alone our friends'."

Then Lance said, "We'll alert Chief Doyle, Dr. Crygor and Penny about Bahamut's drug ring as we rendezvous with Blaze Bomber and the others. But thanks again for bailing us out of trouble, Z."

"No thanks are necessary; I'm just doing my job. I have to get back undercover now before the enemy discovers they didn't kill all of Team Spectre, so until then...try not to die."

"Don't worry, we've felt worse. Just do what you can to keep tabs on them for us." After parting ways with the last surviving spy, the Contras took off in their Contra Cruiser to give thanks to their backup, whereas the spy teleported back to his post. While they discussed whether Yumi was up to joining the campaign to thwart the enemy's plans to revive Red Falcon, Bill couldn't stop thinking about this Z character.

In fact, he began to wonder what the stranger's angle was, but Lance talked him out of it because they needed to let Commander Doyle, Dr. Crygor and Penny know right away about Phazon.

[End BGM]

--------------------

A WHILE EARLIER...

[Stage BGM: Sector 1 (Super Smash Bros. Brawl)]

Mission 3: To the defense posts
50 miles to the north of Sydney, Australia, Cyber City too is under attack by Terminator drones, Space Pirates and corrupt human soldiers. Even with backup as requested, Arctic, Blaze and Yuffie must destroy the Terminator production facility to clear the way for the Contras to pay Galuga Island another visit. However, witnesses have noticed some terrorists looking like robots and setting "bio bombs" all over the place as if they were playing Bomberman.
Could it be those "Zero Men" the Contras' young friends living in Diamond City knew about from a certain video game, said to have "ruined the franchise" one time?
January 5, 20XX
6:40 AM


"(Gah, ha ha ha ha! Slaughtering helpless Earthlings is fun!)"

"(Lord Ridley say have fun! FUN!!)"

"(Our Zero Men will blow up this city's amusement park, and then we can build one for Space Pirates!)"

While the Space Pirates were conversing with one another in their own language, they got a little too carried away with blowing things up, that they didn't notice Yuffie kicking some of the Zero Men's own energy spheres right at them like soccer balls, blowing up the aliens one after another.

"(Why that stupid girl! How dare she spoil our fun?! KILL THEM!)"

"Any idea what these bozos are saying?" Yuffie asked Arctic and Blaze.

"Unfortunately, no," replied Penny's assistant. "Our translator device doesn't seem to cover the Space Pirates' language..."

Arctic, however, stole an AK-47 from a dead terrorist and blew the remaining Space Pirates in the vicinity into eternity. "Cut the crap, we gotta blow up that evil factory of Colonel Bahamut's!"

Along the way, the team was flanked by a group of enemy tanks, each based on stolen technology as far as Blaze Bomber could tell. The tanks fired a volley of mortar shells in a 45-degree angle from their six frontal cannons, killing no less than five of Doyle's soldiers even with Yuffie's Protect spell to negate physical damage by half. Everyone else positioned themselves close to the tanks underneath the deadly arc, but not so close that they'd get over. Blaze Bomber rendered the tanks immobile with a stream of flames from his fists at the treads, giving Arctic the opportunity to jump on the tank yet to be disabled. She kicked open the hatch, grabbed the terrorist manning its controls, and threw him out to be blown away by Yuffie's explosive shurikens. Having stolen that tank, the ex-Hate Bomber turned over to the Terminator robots marching by, blowing them up with mortar shells and running over as she drove on through, clearing the way for the Colonial Marines to destroy the remaining tanks with C4 charges.

The Mistress of the Cold even took it upon herself to take out the Zero Men attempting to blow up an amusement park in Cyber City, thereby reducing the terrorists' chances to strike fear in the hearts of the innocent sharply. "I can't stand to see these Master Chief-ripoffs milling about..." she mumbled to herself.

Realizing one of the six Contras had stolen the tank, the enemy grunts positioned themselves with RPG launchers at the ready, backed up by Space Pirate snipers in case of trouble. "(Make these fools sorry they ever stepped in to ruin our fun!)" shouted a Space Pirate militia in his species' language. The human terrorists wore their own sets of translator devices by order of Yellow Cobra so they could easily understand their alien cohorts. They were all set to defend the robot factory, live or die.

But Arctic wasn't backing down just because she gazed at the terrorists armed with RPGs. She pulled out one of her Bowling Bombs, twisted its top half in a 180-degree angle, and set it next to the controls so that by the time she jumped out and back to her allies, the entire tank detonated at the factory's front entrance, tearing more than just its doors off their hinges, and killing the enemy grunts simultaneously. "Ha! Just my way of saying 'knock, knock'!"

"I bet Yellow Cobra's gotta be inside, waiting for us!"

"I'm not sure if he's here at all, Yuffie," said Blaze, "but we do need to take out the factory if Australia is to be safe. I'd recommend we keep our eyes peeled for any suicide bombers coming our way."

Attention all hands, intruder alert! Prepare for battle, but I want Arctic Bomber alive so I can kill her myself! It was then and there that Yuffie guessed right: Yellow Cobra was indeed here, somewhere inside the illegal robot factory.

"So, he wants only me, huh?" said Arctic. "Well, I'll be happy to oblige!"

"Arctic, wait! Stop!" But it was too late for Yuffie to even try anymore.

"Don't worry about me, just blow up the factory's blasted core while I keep Yellow Cobra distracted!"

The ninja teen sighed. "Blaze, I think she watches one Rambo movie too many."

"As much as I can agree with you, at least she's been learning to control her anger in the midst of battle." Just then, he was interrupted by the roar of a monster; a Space Pirate, strapped with an explosive barrel on his back, charged forth at the team. But, a sniper amongst the Colonial Marines aimed carefully and fired an armor-piercing bullet at the barrel, killing the suicide bomber in the ensuing explosion before he could even get close enough to detonate himself in front of everyone.

However, that was only a prelude of what's to come: a large group of Zero Men running straight at the heroes with active energy bombs on their left gauntlet-like hands, each yelling out loud: "Red Falcon will live forever!"

Blaze Bomber was beyond disgusted at the idea that people would detonate themselves just to strike terror in the hearts of man and Bomber alike on Earth, much less kill someone, but he had no other choice. It was either put the deluded human terrorists in robot suits out of their misery, or feel the deadly wrath of suicide-bombing. Because of this, the trip to the factory's core was delayed, though the heroes prayed Arctic Bomber would come back alive...or at the very least destroy the core for them.

--------------------

"Show yourself, Yellow Cobra!" shouted the Mistress of the Cold. "I know you're here!"

"Coming alone with just a machine gun like Rambo, aren't we?" answered the Second Lieutenant. "No matter, this factory's staying right here in Australia! And you, traitor, will pay dearly for making me into a cyborg!"

[End BGM]
[Boss BGM: VS Ghor (Metroid Prime 3: Corruption)]

Armed with nothing more than a converted Power Loader, Yellow Cobra activated its frontal shields so any attack on the cockpit would be rendered useless. The only way for Arctic to take him out of his mech, was to blow its arms and legs to pieces. It would be easy for her to aim and throw her Bowling Bombs, had it not been for the Power Loader's unusual ability to jump around and knock her off her feet with a shockwave. Instead, she alternated between "her" AK-47 and her ice powers, but Yellow Cobra was quick to punch the machine gun out of her hands with his Power Loader's arms. Then he grabbed her without hesitation.

"See the incinerator down by the assembly line?" Yellow Cobra stated his point by punching a nearby window with the mech's other arm until it shattered into pieces. "This is where all the Terminator rejects go if they either malfunction during production or simply don't meet our status quota. And guess what? You're just another reject begging to be shut down. When I toss you through the broken glass...well, I'd rather not let you live long enough to hear what I'm about to do to traitors like you. In other words, kiss your ass goodbye!"

"Hrrngh...not if I can...HELP IT!" She struggled hard enough to free her right hand, albeit beneath the Power Loader's arm. Then she froze the legs into solid ice, followed by the arm Yellow Cobra detained her with, and busted out to freeze the entire mech, shorting out the frontal shields and forcing the alien commander to bail out, lest he be frozen rock solid too.

"Very clever, Arctic...just plain clever..." By then, he pressed a big red button in his control room, setting off a blaring klaxon in the entire factory. "You may have stripped my attempt to assassinate you personally, but as long as you and your friends don't live to tell the story to all the people of Earth, one less base of operations won't hurt. We've already concocted what we brought in the Space Pirates from the Metroid video games for anyway!"

"Whaddya mean concocted?"

"Something so terrifying, it could even scare the hell out of M. Bison! I wish I'd stick around long enough to see you die for betraying Lord Red Falcon, but my life is more important at the moment." Yellow Cobra teleported himself out with a press of a button on his belt, leaving Arctic Bomber to kick the door open and dash her way past the closing blast doors. But to Yellow Cobra, his reason for losing the robot factory would be at the very least excusable as opposed to Swampster's, assuming Arctic had indeed died in the explosion - which, in actuality, she didn't.

[End BGM]

--------------------

"That was cutting it a bit too close, Arctic," said Blaze. "How are you?"

"Ehh, could be worse," she answered. "Let's just say I coaxed Yellow Cobra into blowing up his own Terminator factory, but he said something about Space Pirates being brought in from the Metroid games to concoct some evil experiment."

Arctic, Blaze and Yuffie stood alongside the Colonial Marines, miles away from the scorching ruins of the enemy base. No sooner than they escaped with their lives, did they rendezvous with the original four Contras, having arrived at their current position alongside Yumi and Kaz.

"You guys aren't gonna believe this," said Yumi, "but word on the street is Red Falcon's goons are recreating Phazon."

"Phazon?" Arctic, Blaze and Yuffie asked in unison.

"Only the dangerously radioactive substance that really isn't of this world," replied Ami. "Bill, Lance, Aaron and I were just infected, but not bad; our converted Geiger counter reads only 10% at the moment. I think we found ourselves lured into a death trap while you were saving Australia, but a mysterious cloaked man named Z saved our lives. We'll explain on our way to Galuga Island."

TO BE CONTINUED...

Posted by: WarioMan Oct 23 2016, 09:10 AM
Chapter 5: A change in the game plan

[Interlude BGM: Rukifellth's Theme (Bomberman 64: The Second Attack!)]

"...And our invasion on Japan failed, dismally," summarized Bazooka Bomber, standing before Colonel Bahamut in a meeting room hidden within the Galuga Archipelago. "We had to abort it because HE, just HAD to leave our Terminator factory completely unguarded to settle a personal score. He even stole some of our Phazon for himself!"

"Clearly, this ornery, middle-aged wretch is unsuitable as a commanding officer!" complained Jet Bomber. "And bottom line - like I said before - he smashed us up like a spoiled, toy-abusing, schoolyard bully who just couldn't have his own way! You have NO clue how hard it is to keep my body buffed AND damage-free! Scratch-free, tops! Our battle scars from Shirobon and Kurobon's bomb blasts were far less irritating than this..."

"They were, Jet, but let me remind you that Shiro and Kuro killed us twice, and Great Bomber only once."

"Who cares about such petty details from the past, Bazooka?! Because all I know is this: not only does Swampster hate obeying orders, he's also a complete jackass, plain and simple!"

Swampster raised his voice as he flared up in response to Jet and Bazooka, "LIES! That was all because Regulus here was anglin' to steal MY job!"

"Oh, that's just borderline hypocritical, considering the fact that you yourself STOLE an experimental handheld rocket launcher, right from under our noses! In case you think we're too stupid to know, Lord Ridley insisted that it be mass-produced for use by the Space Pirates, fueled with Phazon. I mean look, we get it already: You hate the Contras with a vengeance. Well guess what? WE ALL DO TOO, JACKASS!"

Lady Bomber added, "Yeah! And if you think I'm gonna sit on my butt and clean up after your mess by caking myself with makeup because I wear an orange dress and fashionable high tops, YOU'VE GOT ANOTHER THING COMING! If we weren't in this meeting right now, I'd introduce you to Girl's Best Friend: Ms. Bomb!" She made her point by pulling out a black sphere, typically the size of a tenpin bowling ball for use by Bombermen and women, with a fuse atop. However, she kept it unlit so as to threaten the half-man, half-Lizalfos into refraining from any further insubordination.

"Here it comes," Hammer Bomber said to Jet Bomber and Bazooka Bomber, snickering quietly as he listened.

"Being a Bomber-girl myself - even if I'm more artificial than native, in our case - I'm able to generate bombs just as pretty, shiny and deadly as her. One thing in common: she don't like it when you wail on me or any of my cohorts, cuz when the fuse's lit, Ms. Bomb is not your gal-pal anymore! That's right, buster, you'd better run away before my beauties get all cranky-pants on you!" Lady Bomber turned over to Colonel Bahamut, Dr. Mandrake and the three Hate Bombers. "With all due respect, I say we fire this...this...lizard man-like thing on the spot!"

"Lizalfos," corrected Yellow Cobra.

"Whatever!" thundered the female assassin. "At least Hammer Bomber's not a complete idiot, unlike Mister My-Hunt-My-Rules!"

"Lucky for Swampster, I have a good enough excuse for losing our other robot factory. We should be down to just Aaron, Ami, Bill and Lance by now...even if it meant giving up my chance to eliminate Arctic Bomber for what she did to me."

Colonel Bahamut pondered the humanoid, yellow-skinned cobra's words momentarily. "I hope for your sake, they truly lost their friends in the explosion. Dr. Mandrake, make sure Kraid's well-fed and ready to stomp them into atoms."

"Yes, colonel," said the elderly scientist, taking his leave.

"Kraid eat them for dinner!" gloated Major Deathbringer.

"Hmph, we wouldn't have lost the Terminator factories if I were in charge," said Captain Octane, "instead of these two incompetent boys. The Gerudo Pirates do not cater to useless men and everybody knows it."

"Oh, you think you're sooo special," interrupted Swampster, "calling me sissy names like incompetent or useless! Now you listen to me and listen real bloody good, lady, I've been playing that stupid little game of cat-and-mouse with the Contras longer than you've ever done, and I know them both inside and out! That means only I'm allowed to kill them, and if Mr. Blue-and-Bright thinks otherwise..." He paused to glare at Regulus once again. "...then he'll be kissing lead from my Winchester!"

The colonel, tired of all the complaints and disobedience, declared that enough was enough. "Swampster, I made it explicitly clear that you are to follow orders as we dominate the Earth with our recreated Phazon formula. Once our worldwide drug ring is fully established, then you can tear away at the Contras to your heart's content, but until then, we DO NOT ALTER THE PLAN!"

To emphasize Bahamut's words, let alone shut the half-man, half-Lizalfos's mouth, Sniper Bomber stepped forth. "Furthermore, while you might as well be my 'long-lost son' in the Contras' minds, you'd be wise to remember the three things we Hate Bombers also despise in addition to our hated enemies: incompetence, insubordination, and especially disloyalty. Let the Space Pirates have their fun killing them for now, and that is final!"

With nothing left for him to win the argument, Swampster walked away muttering to himself, "I oughta get my hands on that arrogant Regulus and rip that bloody mask clean off his circuits..."

"Oh, shut up!" retorted Yellow Cobra. "You're lucky your actions didn't completely jeopardize our plans. Now help me distribute the flying gear to the Space Pirate Aerotroopers; they're getting bored to death of waiting anyway."

The poacher sighed in reluctance. "Yeah, yeah..."

"And people address me as the idiot of the bunch," said Hammer Bomber.

"You guys go on ahead and do whatever," called Jet Bomber. "I have some serious buffing to do on my body. What can I say? I'm a fighter jet enthusiast."

Watching Great Bomber and the Four Bomber Kings leave the meeting room, Axe Bomber sighed painfully, twirling his pointy thumbs as he struck up a conversation of his own. "How long must we endure the waiting game?! I'm really bored!"

"Patience, Axe Bomber...although, 'patience' is the one word you'd never imagine me using," replied Volcano Bomber. "We'll have our fun soon enough...that is, if the Contras can get this far without becoming too infected by Phazon for their own good. Lord Red Falcon wouldn't want us Hate Bombers dead at the time of his return from the dead."

"So what do we do in the meantime?! Act like sitting ducks while Ridley and his Space Pirates are busy shooting off their mouths or what?!"

"We were thinking more along the lines of letting the Contras try and cheat death when pitted against Phazon weaponry," answered Sniper Bomber. "Plus, it won't be long before we get hold of this Z person, and eradicate him for tipping them off about our plans...whoever he is..."

[End BGM]

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[Conference BGM: Theme of Super Metroid (Super Metroid)]

CYBER CITY'S HOTEL, A HOLIDAY INN, ON THE THIRD FLOOR...

Though the Contras had planned a full-frontal assault on the Galuga Archipelago, they quickly reconsidered it, given the very likely scenario that its occupants were armed to the teeth with Phazon. Instead, they stayed at a ten-story hotel to recuperate for a while, whereas the Colonial Marines did their part to boost Australia and Japan's defenses against further alien invasions.

"I thought Samus Aran already wiped them all out along with Mother Brain on what used to be the planet Zebes..." said Blaze Bomber. "Or so historical facts go."

Yuffie added, "Apparently not all of them."

Arctic Bomber, on the other hand, scoffed, "Who cares if they weren't all destroyed?! No way in hell are they screwing up planet Earth while I'm with the Contras to the bitter end! Still, I don't blame them for talking us out of charging forth to Galuga Island right away."

"Do you think Penny and her grandpa will be able to produce some anti-Phazon suits for us?" asked Yumi.

"Aaron already volunteered to provide a specimen from his bloodstream," answered Blaze Bomber. "I've given him a shot as part of the process, which should be enough to teleport overseas to Crygor Labs in Diamond City as we speak. As soon as they analyze what we're dealing with, Chief Doyle will provide the anti-Phazon gear we need. It may not be enough for everybody, but if only eight of us has to be enough, then we'll make the best of what we got. That way, we won't have to worry about any back-door attacks on Japan and Australia with the Colonial Marines backing us up. As for the expected time of completion, I'd say about..."

Blaze paused momentarily to look at his watch. "12 or so hours, as of 7:30 AM here. We can't risk getting drugged by the evil poison without any protection whatsoever. Oh, and I personally asked Penny to keep it a secret so our friends wouldn't be too worried about our safety. I did, however, hear something about them dealing with a couple bad apples calling themselves the Macrohards. Much like Purple Basilisk, they don't seem to pose too much of a threat aside from their petty crimes...so...things should be alright with Wreck-It Ralph and his pals around to set things right."

"Maybe they already have!" beamed Yuffie. "...Right?"

"She didn't say. But right now, we'll have to listen for more info from our mysterious spy. I've got a bad feeling the Hate Bombers have already beefed up security, big time, since our last visit."

"You're right," mumbled Arctic Bomber. "For all we know, Galuga Island's got a crap-load of anti-air flak cannons and stuff like that..."

"Then we'll just have to take it in low if that's the case," assumed Yumi, cracking her knuckles, "by borrowing jet bikes if there are any!"

--------------------

NEXT DOOR, STILL ON THE THIRD FLOOR...

"So...you guys have any idea on who this Z really is?" wondered Ami.

"Could be Zero for all we know..." suggested Aaron. "Then again, it could be some other guy in disguise, especially after the things Zero did..."

"What kind of things, Aaron?" questioned Bill. "Wasn't he one of the world-famous Maverick Hunters besides Mega Man X?"

"He was...until one day. And by 'things', I mean bad things. Really, really, bad things...He was friends with Chi Princess Tekki of ChiWorld at one point. I don't remember the exact details as to what happened between them, but all I know is that one day, he went mad. Over time, she began to remind him of Iris, the sole female in the Repliforce - and Colonel's younger sister - whom he personally slew by his own hands. During that incident, he initially felt guilty for having killed Colonel, but by the time he did the same for Iris, he became mentally broken to the point in which he just wanted to forget it ever happened...no matter how much he wished she hadn't died by his hands. But today, when he got to know Tekki, his memories somehow resurfaced...and...it got so bad, he let himself become obsessed with her. In short, she reminded him too much of Iris."

"Let me stop you for a moment," Bill interrupted in a polite manner. "What do you mean by her reminding him too much of Iris?"

"I'm not too sure, Bill, but he probably sees Iris in her. He hated the thought of having lost that young woman ever since the Repliforce incident, though it became clear the evilest Maverick of all, named Sigma, had been pulling strings the entire time. Zero wanted 'her' back at any cost...even if it meant taking Tekki for himself. His actions ended up being his undoing, and he had since been banished from ChiWorld...or, so the people of the fair kingdom believed."

Ami thought for a moment, albeit not on the main subject at hand. "I've heard ChiWorld is also populated by Bob-ombs, all of which Chi Princesses Tekki and Cherry saved from the horrible fate of being forced by bad guys like Bowser to explode on innocent people. The girls simply removed the gunpowder, replacing it with something much safer for both Bob-ombs and people; Cherry prefers filling hers with flowers."

"Yep, good for them...but alas, it doesn't change the fact that poor Iris is no longer among the living, Reploid or human. Initially, her last wish was for a world where only Reploids exist, but...I can feel deep down that she really wished for the same thing X does: to live in a world where both humans and Reploids coexist in peace."

"Maybe she's watching over everybody, in heaven..."

Lance took a moment to come up with a theory as to what Z's true identity is. "Let's assume 'Z' happens to be Zero. But if what you said about him is true, then maybe he's turning over a new leaf by atoning for the sins he wrought upon ChiWorld."

"Or rather, have us think he's reforming himself," added Bill. "But Z didn't have a beam sword with him when he saved our lives, meaning it couldn't have been Zero. After all, he was the last of Dr. Wily's creations to begin with, so that's out of the question. Plus, the cloaked guy seems to know Regulus well like we do. Probably got a bone to pick with him..."

"...Sirius...? No, it couldn't be..."

"Nah...not him either, Lance. He was the true enemy who used us as puppets on a string to get his Omni Cube back from Altair, remember? He's dead now, and so is that evil relic of his."

The dark-haired Contra nodded. "Hmm, right...Sorry, I forgot. I think it's for the best that we focus on our mission at hand, and forget about Zero or Sirius pretending to give us a hand. It's obvious Colonel Bahamut isn't the kind of opponent to face whilst distracted."

"So it's agreed, right?" stated Ami. "Z is just Z for now."

"Correct," acknowledged Aaron. "Once we get further into the enemy base, we'll eventually deduce Z's true identity. Either that, or he'll reveal it himself before our very eyes - if Phazon doesn't kill us first, that is."

"Hmm...wait a minute...Guys, I think I've got it! What if Z is Max in disguise, one of Cheerful White's trusted allies from planet Bomber?"

"Could be," Bill answered with an assuring smile. "If so, then Cheerful White and Cute Pink must've thought ahead and tipped him off early on about Red Falcon's followers attempting to revive their master from hell! We may have a chance in our favor..."

But without proof of evidence that "Z" may be Max in disguise, the Contras could not do much, rather than address their spy as the former. On the other hand, they marked him as Max anyway, albeit only in their heads so as to not tip off the enemy about the spy's true identity. In other words...

The original four Contras simply kept it to themselves for the remainder of their campaign.

[End BGM]

TO BE CONTINUED...

Posted by: WarioMan Nov 20 2016, 11:45 AM
Chapter 6: Giant dinos and Phazon addicts

[Overworld BGM: Ocean (Contra 4)]

Mission 4: Deep descent
12 hours after the reunion in Sydney, Australia, the six Contras and their two honorary partners are informed by Commander-in-Chief Doyle of the anti-Phazon gear Penny and her grandfather transported from Crygor Labs upon request. Each armorsuit would come equipped with a shield that not only surrounds the user's body, it can negate any Phazon-fueled attack to ensure that said user does not become infected further by its radiation. Although we can't confirm how long that feature will last or how much it can absorb in battle, what we do know is the user can "recharge" the prototype's anti-Phazon shielding by deactivating it for a time.
It's our only hope of ending the global-scale threat before the intergalactic drug spreads beyond the Galuga Archipelago. Should the armorsuits fail to carry the Contras through, the Corruption status on their bodies would be disastrous and we fear our planet may end up like Tallon IV, Aether, Bryyo and Elysia almost did: a "Class XIII wasteland."
January 5, 20XX
10:00 PM


"No sign of hostiles anywhere on the sea or underwater..." informed Blaze Bomber. "I wonder why they're just letting us come all the way here with our jetbikes unharmed?"

"Isn't it obvious, Blaze?" added Arctic Bomber. "You know how in some movies, the bad guys love playing the 'step into my parlor, said the spider to the fly' card! Siren Bomber tried that on us during World War III, all the while impersonating 9-Volt's mom right in front of the poor kid just to scare us into submission! Kinda makes me appreciate defecting to the Contras even more, don'tcha think?"

"Whatever the reason, we've gotta be more careful and - like Bill said - more evasive than what we're already used to," said Aaron. "Hey Ami, what's that new feature you got on your Bomberman Watch?"

"I dunno, Aaron. It's just showing the image of an aquarium."

"Oh, that's the Aqua Mode I installed on your watch before we checked out of the hotel in Cyber City," explained Blaze Bomber. "We're gonna encounter situations where fighting underwater is a necessity in order to get from point A to point B. Normally your bombs, let alone your Bomberman Watch, would be useless because fuses don't light underwater, but when you activate Aqua Mode, they'll be changed into bowling ball-shaped torpedoes."

Ami snapped her fingers with ecstasy. "Like in Bomberman Hero!"

"Don't forget Bomberman Tournament," Aaron reminded his pink-haired best friend. "You were saying, Blaze?"

"As long as your watch is in Aqua Mode, Ami, you can fight enemies while swimming underwater. However, you'll have to remember to deactivate it when you're on dry land, because if you forget, then your bombs would simply squirt out a droplet of water from the fuse and disappear in pink glitter."

"So like in Bomberman Tournament," summarized Ami, "bombs that normally work on dry land are useless underwater, but Aqua Bombs that function beneath the sea can't do diddly-squat on the surface."

"Exactly," said Yumi. "And are we still gonna have some Contra power-ups brought over from Crygor Labs for Aaron, Bill and Lance to use with their Contra Rifles?"

"I'm not too sure, Yumi...I've got a bad feeling our trip to Galuga Island's not gonna be so easy this time. If Red Falcon's followers and worshipers have really beefed up security big time, then chances are they've also built some kind of jamming technology."

Bill nodded. "And for good reason too, Ami. They know we're not that easy to kill, and we oftentimes rely on our power-ups to give us a hand against uneven odds."

Blaze Bomber pulled out a small laptop-like device on his wrist. "Which is why Penny and I have planned a countermeasure of our own, by inventing this Eco-friendly Power-up Generator. Its batteries run on solar energy from the Sun. Plus, it's programmed to give you guys some power-ups to use, in case we're either too far out of range for Crygor Labs to teleport one our way or a jammer is preventing it. Dr. Mandrake may have the smarts, but mine and Penny's are better. You can guess why that's the case."

"Simple: because we're the good guys!" whooped Yuffie.

"What now, Billy?" asked Arctic Bomber.

"From what Z told us over the phone when we rented our jetbikes," answered Bill, "there are three big bosses we'll have to face before we get any further into Colonel Bahamut's base: Kraid, Phantoon, and Draygon. Ridley is among them too, but Z also mentioned he's not joining the fray...yet."

"Here is where our starting point is," stated Lance, pointing at the southwestern section of Galuga Island on his phone's map screen. "Kraid is somewhere ahead; Phantoon's to the right aboard a wrecked ship that suddenly appeared out of nowhere; and Draygon's somewhere underwater to the left. Tactically, splitting up will help accomplish our first objective faster, but given Kraid's huge size, I'd say four of us will have to take him on. Yuffie, you'll come with me to the wrecked ship since the undead are typically weak against healing spells as well as fire and holy power. My Flamethrower power-up can help make short work of them, but even then, you'll have to pull your weight too, in case I get hit once and my Contra Rifle reverts back to its default machine gun."

Yuffie shivered at the thought of fighting ghosts inside a wrecked ship, but she remembered to gulp down her courage and fight on, as though she were doing it for 9-Volt as his guardian angel.

"Aaron, will you be alright without me for a while?" asked Ami.

"I've been through worse, even if we're not always side-by-side. Why?"

"Yumi and I will accompany Blaze and Arctic on the way to fight Kraid. I dunno how we're gonna defeat him without the aid of the Hi-Jump Boots that Samus gets for her Power Suit in every mission, but we do know his weakness. He can only be damaged when his mouth's open."

"...Alright. Then Bill and I will go underwater and face Draygon. We may have a use for the Hookshot attachment yet...It's gonna be a bit suicidal, but we won't know unless we try."

"Hmmm...fighting a big boss monster like Draygon won't be any easier unless...unless I go with you and Bill instead! My Bomberman Watch's Aqua Mode can be very helpful! I wish your Contra Rifles had that new feature too...Blaze Bomber did do the same for them, right?"

"Ahh yes, thank you for reminding me, Ami," assured Blaze Bomber. "And yeah, I modified the Contra Rifles to have that feature, too. The pros and cons are technically the same as with the Bomberman Watch's Aqua Mode, except the guns will shoot harmless droplets of water on dry land if you forget to turn it off. Plus, your shots will suffer from slowdown and a sharp decrease in attack power if you don't enable Aqua Mode underwater. Oh, and one more thing: I've done some modifications on myself so that instead of Molotov cocktails, I can materialize what I'd like to call Blazing Bombs. They work and look similar to Ami's Fire Bombs, except they're red instead of black, and explode correspondingly to incendiary grenades. Besides, I've been thinking for quite a long time that Molotov cocktails sort of make me look more like a corrupt soldier and less like a Bomberman."

"I know what you mean, Blaze," said Arctic Bomber. "That's why I'm sticking with my Bowling Bombs; they give the word 'strike' a whole new meaning! Now don't you worry about a thing, Ami; I'll just get as close as I can to Kraid and throw my bombs at him like I'm doing the Shot Put at the Olympic Games! Easy!"

After discussing their plans and new abilities, the team split into three groups as instructed to fight Kraid, Phantoon and Draygon simultaneously, unaware that the Four Bomber Kings are prepped for a whole another beating to give them.

[End BGM]

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[Stage BGM: Tragedy's Pulse (Castlevania: Order of Ecclesia)]

-BLAZE, ARCTIC AND YUMI'S PATH: SWAMPY JUNGLE-

"Be ready...for anything and everything," said Yumi. "My trusty guitar's sound riffs can stun 'em long enough for you two to blast 'em away!"

"I'll have my radar on at all times to warn us of any incoming threats," added Blaze Bomber.

"Any machine gun the terrorists have at their disposal, I'll gladly steal from them and return fire for you in case my ice powers alone won't cut it!" boasted Arctic Bomber. "AK-47, SG5 Commando, P90, UMP-45, KS7, you name it! Personally, I prefer the AK-47 because to me, it's got a certain flair to it...but hey, what can I say? I like playing FPS games sometimes. Just no sniper rifles, please. I really hate their slow rate of fire, plus I don't like having to aim down my sight if they're gonna swat me all over the place like a freakin' fly."

"Then I'll provide covering fire with a sniper rifle if necessary. I've been practicing up with Bill and Lance at a shooting range and by playing <i>Silent Scope</i> in my spare time. Think of this as an insurance policy in our favor, because knowing Sniper Bomber, he tends to wise up on his dirty tactics. Furthermore, considering the Red Falcon Empire's MO based on our last visit to Galuga Island, it's no secret their gunmen always use the deadliest sniper rifle of all: the AWP."

"But what about your flame powers? It's not like you to just throw it over for--"

Blaze interrupted, "Assuming the enemies we encounter have fireproof or iceproof armor. I could have both of us combine our fire and ice powers for high-explosive damage, but it's best that we conserve our energy for emergency situations...such as our battles against the likes of Kraid and Ridley. If my theory is correct, we'll need to be in perfect harmony to pull off such a tag team attack."

"In other words, don't waste it too much on the small fry. Speaking of which..." Arctic spotted three enemy guards chattering about how they should be given access to better weapons, and a first-class meal for having to slog through swampy areas in their patrol every 10 hours. She could relate to them in a way, but they were still among terrorists serving under a legion of alien warmongers from space; they had to be taken out ASAP. "Ahh, so you clowns like playing with bombs, huh? Well bombs away, you unpatriotic, bomb-kissing cheeseballs!" She knocked them over with a Bowling Bomb, stealing a scoped SG5 Commando and two P90s as her bomb blew them up.

"Why do I get the feeling they're about to know we're here?" wondered Yumi, picking off a sniper atop a palm tree with a sound blast from her guitar. Blaze wasted no time taking the dead grunt's AWP, making sure it still had plenty of armor-piercing rounds left in reserve.

"Who gives a crap, Yumi? They're gonna come after us anyway."

"If I may interrupt for a moment, Arctic," called Blaze Bomber. "My radar indicates Kraid isn't too far ahead from here, but he is somewhere underground. We'll have to press on and...is it me, or were those guns illegally modified with Phazon? Our Geiger counter shows high readings...and yet none of us are feeling any negative side-effects from touching them."

"Hello! Anti-Phazon gear, remember? These gloves we're wearing must have came with our armorsuits!" The Mistress of the Cold put the SG5 Commando on her back with a sling, as though it were a backpack, and held both P90s with her hands akimbo. "Now it's time to do what I always do at light gun arcade games like Area 51 or Aliens Armageddon: Dual-Wielding Action!"

"Don't go overboard, Arctic," warned Blaze.

"It's under control, Blaze. Just because I'm not as skilled as Aaron, Bill or Lance are, doesn't mean I can't play Rambo."

Yumi took Arctic's words to consideration. "Odd, I don't seem to recall John J. Rambo fighting like that in the movies..."

All of a sudden, they felt an earthquake tremor beneath their feet, accompanied by thundering footsteps. It turned out not a moment too soon, that the swamp was a front for an underground lair as a giant claw pierced through the ground and pulled them in!

[End BGM]
[Boss BGM: VS Kraid (Metroid: Zero Mission)]

RRRRROOOOOOOOOAAAAAARRRRR! The first noise they heard upon being grabbed by the claw, and already they reconsidered ever splitting up! No sooner than they had fallen into the cavern did they notice the claw belonged to a giant-sized, three-eyed dinosaur.

"Holy freakin' crap...Is it me, or does he look like he let himself go? Man, if Aaron and Ami were here, they'd say something like I haven't played much Metroid to realize that..."

"We may not have access to the Crash Missiles, Arctic," noted Blaze Bomber, "but we still have our own explosive means to win. Still, given that Kraid is WAY bigger than us, trying to get on top to aim for his head is another story. Plus, we don't have the High Jump Boots or Space Jump like Samus usually does; therefore we must work our way around Kraid's massive size."

"If you have any suggestions..." Yumi batted away the sharp projectiles coming from Kraid's claws with her guitar. "NOW'S THE TIME!"

"I'm afraid you won't live to rendezvous with your friends again anytime soon," called Dr. Mandrake. He stood on a hovering platform, safe from the attacks beneath himself. "Such a remarkable specimen, and with enormous attack power to boot. Colonel Bahamut will soon have an unstoppable army and by the time the people of your Diamond City realize it, it'll be far too late. Kraid, would you be so kind as to show them we mean business?"

He pressed a button on a control console mounted atop his platform, bringing in a large box of pizza for Kraid to devour. "I've tried countless ways of exploiting Phazon to crush the likes of you, so I figured that since Kraid apparently likes to eat, lacing all kinds of food - junk or otherwise - with Phazon will surely boost his attack power. Enjoy your last meal on Earth, lowly pawns!"

"No...you...DON'T!" Arctic broke herself and her two partners free from Kraid's grasp upon them, unloading on Kraid with both "her" P90s, all the while remembering to keep her aim steady when wielding two machine guns simultaneously. The only downside she had to put up with was each gun had to be reloaded from time to time, as opposed to the Contra Rifles' unlimited ammo. One of her stray shots damaged Dr. Mandrake's platform, forcing him to retreat lest he be next to fall into Kraid's gaping maw. "Hey Kraid, careful what you eat! You might get a little bad case of indigestion!" She hurled her Bowling Bomb directly into the giant dino's mouth, inflicting damage on the inside. Then he knocked her into the ground in anger, roaring again as he fired three large spikes from his belly. But the Mistress of the Cold jumped in front of Blaze and Yumi, intent on taking damage for them with her armorsuit's anti-Phazon shields still active. In the end, she eyed the box of pizza, therefore giving her an idea...

"Five Space Nights at Ridley's Pizzeria: FOR ALL YOUR SPACE PIRATING NEEDS, eh? Well, if Kraid's gonna use that Phazon junk, then let's see if I can't turn it against him."

"ARCTIC, NO!" cried Yumi. "What the hell do you think you're doing?! Don't be stupid!"

"Our armorsuits were designed for protection against Phazon attacks only!" warned Blaze Bomber. "You're gonna risk getting Phazon Corruption in your body!"

"Relax, fellas! I can handle it! If that stupid dino's not gonna play fair, why bother using strategy to exploit his weak spot unharmed?" Her eyes and body began to glow a radioactive blue hue, therefore increasing her finesse and attack power sharply. Then she jumped unnaturally high to unload on Kraid some more, punching him left and right in the face, and throwing more of her Bowling Bombs down his gullet until he finally gave up the ghost and fell to the ground face-first, nearly crushing Blaze Bomber and Yumi's bodies in the process.

"HA HA HA HA! See? I told you I can handle it! Phazon CAN make you strong after all, meaning if they're not gonna fight fair, neither will we!"

[End BGM]

"Arctic, we need to get you back to Crygor Labs," said a stern Blaze Bomber. "I think you're developing Phazon addiction, because our Geiger counter's readings indicate you've just spiked yourself up to about 30% Phazon Corruption after eating all of Kraid's unfinished boxes of drugged pizza."

"But don't you see, Blaze? I can save you guys from getting corrupted yourselves, even if it kills me! I've gotta have the stuff now if we wanna beat Bahamut and Mandrake at their own game!" Without warning, she ran off to find some Phazon reserves to steal.

"You're a Contra, not a martyr! Arctic, come back! The space drug will kill you!" But it was too late for Blaze. "Dang!"

He opened up the transmission channel on his wrist communicator. "Aaron, Ami, Bill, Lance...and Yuffie, we've got a problem on our hands. We just did our part by defeating Kraid and..." There was static on his end. "Guys? Crap, it's gotta be that jamming device somewhere on the island! We'll have to get in touch with Z if we can, but in the meantime, we've got to chase after Arctic Bomber and stop herself from getting killed by Phazon!"

"I thought you guys said she knew better!" said Yumi.

"I know...It's just sometimes she gets a little too reckless for her own good. I pray she knows what she's doing..."

TO BE CONTINUED...

Posted by: WarioMan Jan 17 2017, 09:04 AM
Chapter 7: Undersea Terror

[Overworld BGM: Pirate Homeworld Main Theme (Metroid Prime 3: Corruption)]

"Wait, so you and Lance really knew Colonel Bahamut for a long time?" Ami asked.

"That's right, Ami. When General Rupert was still our assigned CO in Neo City during the Alien Wars, Lance and I had orders to repel the alien invasion at its source. Bahamut, on the other hand, led a battalion of foot soldiers to drive away the opposition from the city. What we were unaware of, however, was his curiosity. I could bet you the money that he secretly followed us all the way to Red Falcon's GI-fortified Hate Nest, which at the time was stationed in Japan near Sniper Bomber and Axe Bomber's attempted murder on both you and Yumi."

"Are you telling me..." Aaron wondered, despite his loss for words.

"Yes. By pretending he was scouting for any hidden ambushes, he somehow managed to evade suspicion. Although, Lord knows what he's planning for Diamond City today now that it's possible he also spied on us during our rescue mission. If he's known we helped Mona save 9-Volt's life, then I fear he may already know where we live, even before we formed our Contra team together - you, Ami, me and Lance as its core members. We've gotta stop him and Dr. Mandrake, NOW, before they endanger our friends' lives just to get to us."

"Let me get this straight: by analyzing the data of your mission to thwart Red Falcon's alien invasion at the source, he later worked with Dr. Mandrake to grab hold of an alien cell that was left behind."

Bill paused briefly to recollect all he and Lance knew about the colonel. "It's all coming back now. Lance and I were there when Bahamut went rogue and plotted to overthrow the Government. He knocked us out cold, but before he could personally deliver the killing blow, General Rupert took the blast to save our lives, therefore buying Commander Doyle enough time to stop the coup. We had heard nothing of Bahamut or his whereabouts after he fled the scene..."

After a minute of silence, Ami pieced Bill's words altogether. "So you mean...you and Lance knew about all this from the beginning, before we began our new mission to save Earth...?"

"Exactly. I'm sorry for not telling you or Aaron about it sooner; I didn't think it was necessary after our success in foiling the colonel's mad plot. It was supposed to be just another mission to protect the world."

The pink-haired girl assured the blue-clad Contra with her hand on his shoulder, "Don't blame yourself, Bill. Maybe he had you, Lance and the chief thinking you defeated him before he could overthrow the Government. Never mentioned anything about the alien cell, even."

"I fear you may be correct, Ami. He must have had a backup plan in mind, which can explain his sudden reappearance. All we knew at that time was Colonel Bahamut went rogue without warning, going on about how he desired more power like some kind of extremist. Oh, but it gets even better: he enacted the first step in his coup d'etat by pretending to be a wounded soldier in need of assistance!"

"WHAT?!" exclaimed Aaron and Ami in unison.

"He contacted us on the radio, claiming that aliens were running amok to avenge Red Falcon's supposed death. Unfortunately, it was too late as soon as we went into action; we fell into his trap."

"Why that two-timing bastard! How could he do something like this?!"

"You took the words out of my mouth, Aaron. Colonel Bahamut pulled a Sirius on us, and went on with his dictatorial speech afterwards. Had General Rupert not sacrificed his life for ours...no, it's best not to think of what outcome would've been. Be thankful Lance and I lived to establish the Contras with the two of you, so that we could carry on the bloodline of our ancestors together. And with the four of us alongside Blaze, Arctic, Yuffie and Yumi to take on the Space Pirates and Bahamut's legion of Middle Eastern terrorists in 'Zero Men' armorsuits, we'll finish what Chief Doyle started. Let me contact the others real quick to let them we got to the starting point of Draygon's underwater hideout." Bill opened his communications channel, only to receive nothing but static. "dam, that means it'll be a long time before we hook up with our friends, let alone Penny. There has to be a radar jammer somewhere on Galuga Island, but our top priority's to get rid of its alien guardians before we can face Ridley."

"Maybe he's got radar-jamming powers implanted into his body as a result of Dr. Mandrake's Phazon experiments?"

"I don't know yet, Ami," said Aaron, "but I can bet we're about to find out soon enough - IF we can get this far in the Phazon-infested territory. We have to protect our anti-Phazon gear as we wear them; if it's tampered with, we'll be vulnerable to higher levels of Phazon Corruption once again!"

[End BGM]
[Alert BGM: Boss Appearance (Mega Man: Maverick Hunter X)]

Suddenly, a different female voice rang out, "Mind if I interrupt your conversation, little man?" A figure jumped down from the palm trees with a pair of scimitars on hand. Bill was quick to block the surprise attack by using his Contra Rifle as a bo staff. Luckily it wasn't chopped off in the process, let alone scratched, for Blaze Bomber and Penny were wise to have reinforced the Contras' holy-powered weapons well.

"The big boy in blue himself, Bill Rizer. How nice to see you again...although, I was hoping for four of you."

"Captain Octane." Bill muttered in disgust.

"My, what a cold reception," the Gerudo Pirate replied mockingly. "Very typical for a grunt like you with biceps for brains. Now, I take it these two are your fellow Contras I heard about from Sniper Bomber. I'd say it's nice to meet you, Aaron and Ami, but it's a shame I have to kill you right here. Oh well, I suppose I'll just have to trust Major Deathbringer to find Lance and blow him to smithereens for me."

[End BGM]
[Fight BGM: Middle Boss Battle (The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask)]

"Well, you're in for a big disappointment," said Ami, hurling a Fire Bomb at Octane only for it to be batted away with a scimitar, whereupon it exploded next to a lone Space Pirate unlucky enough to be in the blast radius. "Not afraid of fire, I see. How about some ice?!"

"We'll back you up, Ami!" added Aaron, installing the Homing Missiles and Ice Breath power-ups into his Contra Rifle. Bill picked the usual Spread Gun for his own. "Let her have it when the time is right!"

Ami needed not say a word, other than to nod in response. As Octane leaped from tree to tree, Aaron let loose a barrage of heatseekers, intent on distracting the Gerudo Pirate by forcing her to block every shot with her dual blades. Bill stood beside him in a back-to-back formation, shooting down the enemy snipers hiding on top of the trees.

"Come on mister, surely you can do better than that!" taunted Octane, fixated on her defense to the point of not noticing Ami's sneak attack. "Your stupid missiles can't even do much damage anyway!"

But as Aaron anticipated, Octane did not see a pumped-up Ice Bomb hurtling towards her from behind, freezing her in a block of ice. "We don't have time to play pirates with her. Quickly, into the water up ahead before she breaks free! But don't forget to activate your Aqua Modes; our gadgets can't do much underwater without it."

[End BGM]

--------------------

Meanwhile, Lance and Yuffie had already gotten closer to their own destination: a wrecked ship where Phantoon was said to be inside. The red-clad Contra, too, had an Aqua Mode for his Contra Rifle. "You can fight underwater just like that? Cool!"

"We may or may not have to, but it's just to be on the safe side. There's bound to be undead creatures inside and--"

"I know, I know, Lance," interrupted Yuffie. "I'll do my very best to pull my weight in case you lose your Flamethrower power-up, I promise! My Cure spell works against them too, and I've got plenty of Ethers to keep my magic power from running out."

[Fight BGM: Infiltrate (The House of the Dead III)]

"YOU GO NO FURTHER!" thundered a loud voice, followed by a large figure leaping from atop the ghost ship, releasing a shockwave upon landing feet-first to knock the pair over. "Deathbringer not like nosy intruders! You, red man with blue ribbon on head!"

"It's a bandanna," Lance said dryly with an irritated look. "There's a difference between them."

"Your three buddies not here, but not matter! I leave them to others anyway, but we have score to settle! You, little girl with big pointy ring! Get ready for bomb to face!" The oversized thug pulled out two RPGs, wielding one on each hand without any fear or regard to recoil.

"Does he always talk like this, Lance?"

"Yes...all the time."

"Talk time over! Deathbringer blow up itty-bitty cowards now!"

Yuffie groaned. "Deathbringer, or whatever your name is, all we fight is...I mean, Phantoon top pri...UGH! Nevermind! We just don't have time to deal with you!"

The morally corrupt major laughed heartily at the ninja teen's reaction. "You funny little girl! Deathbringer bomb you and red man!"

"Yuffie," instructed Lance, "when I give the word, jump."

"O-okay! Anything to shut him up!"

Deathbringer, ready to launch his deadly rockets, shouted a war cry with spit coming out of his mouth. "FIIIRRRE BOOOOOMB!!!"

"JUMP NOW!" called Lance, who along with Yuffie leaped over the exploding rockets and stomped the brute's face, loosening his grip on the bazookas. With the Crash Missiles equipped, Lance inflicted concussive damage on Deathbringer, setting off the rockets inside the RPGs which, in turn, knocked him unconscious.

"That oughta shut his yap for a while," said Yuffie, running behind Lance into the ghost ship. Okay...deep breaths...You have your White Magic spells for protection, Yuf. Don't be scared, just fight. Don't be scared, just fight...

[End BGM]

--------------------

[Stage BGM: Refracted Laboratory (The House of the Dead III)]

"You're absolutely sure she won't come after us?" asked a concerned Aaron, leading the pack of three (including himself) in the undersea cavern below the jungle. With their Aqua Modes activated beforehand, they needed not worry about drowning underwater.

"Positive," answered Ami. "By the time she breaks free, we'll already have been long gone. The only thing we need to worry about is Draygon."

Bill added, "And when we defeat him, we'll rendezvous with the others at the mountain in the center of Galuga Island. Z wants us to meet him there and assist him in taking out Ridley."

"But what good would that do if we don't even know where the source of the jamming is located?" Ami launched some Thunder Bombs from her hands like torpedoes at the oncoming Xenomorphs, killing them in a lightning arc instantly. "Speaking of locations, this is the first time I've seen a Xenomorph swim underwater, and I don't mean in sci-fi movies!"

Without warning, some tentacles sprouted from the walls, aimed at the group! "Aaron, Ami, look out!" Bill pushed the them out of the way, though he couldn't avoid getting swiped across his body, therefore reverting his Contra Rifle back to its default machine gun.

"Here, take my Homing Missiles," said Aaron, ejecting the aforementioned power-up from his rifle with its uninstall button. "You'll need them more than I do for the time being. Ami, you take point up front, Billy and I will cover the rear."

"Roger, Aaron!" The young woman switched places with her best friend, as he handed the Homing Missiles over to Bill. "I'll say it again: Blaze Bomber thought ahead when he and Penny upgraded our gizmos!"

"Mm-hmm. First thing they did after World War III was to implement the eject feature on each of our Contra Rifles. That way, in case one of us loses a power-up in a critical situation, we can share our own to help even the odds."

--------------------

"RAAAAAAARRRGH!!!" bellowed the beefy baddie, chasing Lance and Yuffie throughout the wrecked ship. He had recovered from the explosion his steroidal body endured, though he wasn't too happy about them jumping on his head like a Goomba. "Deathbringer nukinate little namby-pambies for pulling cheap trick!"

"Yuffie, just keep hacking away at the undead until we can reach Phantoon!" shouted Lance. "I'll follow behind and slow him down for as long as I have my Crash Missiles on hand!"

"R-right, boss!" With a rush of adrenaline flowing through her body, Yuffie wasted no time casting Protect, Shell and Haste upon herself and her ally. Then she continued pelting what appeared to be Axis zombies with Cure. "You don't suppose this ship's sudden appearance is Phantoon's doing...?"

"If we get to him alive, we'll find out for sure." Lance grunted as he ducked beneath the armor-piercing bullets coming from Deathbringer's two Negevs, prior to returning fire. "...I'd say it looks to resemble the historic, yet fearsome Yamato battleship from World War II...A formidable opponent it was indeed for the Allied Forces at the Pacific Theater." He paused again to dodge and fire. "I swear, there was no possible way even for Red Falcon to dig it out of the ocean, let alone find its last known whereabouts. I don't think he or any of his loyal Hate Bombers would care about sunken ships, but I wouldn't be surprised if Phantoon got his hands on Phazon for just that!"

Deathbringer roared, "Stop moving, so Deathbringer kill you easy!" He felt no recoil whenever he wielded his Negevs like dual pistols, thanks to his steroidal body.

[End BGM]

--------------------

[Boss BGM: Biotoxic (Metal Slug 6)]

Meanwhile, Ami had successfully led Aaron and Bill to Draygon's lair, despite having sustained damage to their anti-Phazon suits along the way. Regardless, they were grateful to be protected against Phazon attacks...but no sooner than they swam inside the dark chamber did the large, green sea creature with a soft, yellow belly appear before their very eyes.

"Get ready, fellas!" directed Aaron. "He could be powered by Phazon unlike in Super Metroid!"

With the Spread Gun and Drill Shot power-ups equipped for his Contra Rifle, and the Laser Beam for Bill Rizer's, the three Contras were ready as Draygon snarled like one of the kaiju from an old sci-fi movie. Did he just sound like Anguirus? thought Ami.

Wall-mounted electric turrets...perfect, Aaron wondered with anticipation. "Ami, see if you can blast these with your bombs until they give out. I'll tell you later."

"Not a problem, Aaron! You and Bill keep Draygon at bay!" As soon as Ami went to work, the others did their part to provoke the sea monster into chasing after them instead of her by unloading on his face, rather than the weak spot. Draygon retaliated by shooting electric laser beams from his eyes, followed by headbutting Aaron and Bill for additional damage. They knew their armorsuits were not going to take much more abuse, but they had to keep the boss monster distracted long enough for Ami to destroy the turrets.

"Last one's short-circuited!" called the pink-haired girl. "Now what?"

"We let him grab us, and Bill can use the Hookshot attachment on his Contra Rifle to finish the job."

"What?!" exclaimed Bill. "Are you freakin' nuts, Aaron?! The electricity could kill us before Draygon even kicks the bucket!"

"Got any better ideas? I know this strategy is extremely dangerous, but there's no other easy way outta this mess without getting us killed. When I give the word, let it fly at the sparks!"

"It's suicide, alright...but if you think it can stop him, then we'll take the shot." Bill turned over to Draygon once more. "Over here, scumbag! Come and eat us for dinner if you can!"

The sea creature needed not reply, for one kaiju-like roar was enough to convince them that he meant business. He swam downwards, hard, and opened his tentacles for the kill. Then he tightened his grip on them, tail-whipping them repeatedly as he went, until...

"NOW!" yelled Aaron, prompting Bill to fire his Hookshot.

"Take...THIS!!" Out went the metallic hook, aimed directly at the damaged turret. The very moment it made contact, electricity began arcing across the chain, the gun, and the Contras' bodies. But since Draygon still held onto his prey, he too suffered electrical damage, worse than they already were. Thrashing about in pain, he struggled hard to let go, but Bill kept the Hookshot tight on the line of sparks. "Come on...just a little more..." As the electricity continued racing its way to the victims' bodies, the anti-Phazon suits began to fall apart, piece by piece, from all the damage they had taken throughout the journey underwater. Then again, nobody in the team of heroes expected these prototypes to last very long in general.

Draygon's belly grew darker and darker, his body unable to take anymore of his weakness to electricity. With a dying roar, he loosened his grip on the wounded Contras, disintegrating upon hitting the ocean floor.

"Well, I've got good news and bad news," said Bill. "The bad news is our miraculous stunt destroyed the anti-Phazon gear, leaving us open to higher levels of Phazon Corruption again. But the good news is...let's just say it was worth the sacrifice to get rid of Draygon."

"Yeah," nodded Ami. "At least we're still breathing."

"Let's get back to the surface and head over to Mt. Hellraiser," directed Aaron.

--------------------

Deeper within the bowels of the wrecked ship, Deathbringer was growing weaker and weaker after suffering continuous blasts to the body from Lance's Crash Missiles. When the critical moment came, the red-clad Contra finished it with a strong uppercut, knocking him unconscious for good. "Finally! It'll be a long time before he can regain consciousness."

"And not a moment too soon..." gulped Yuffie, noting the materialization of a giant cephalopod with single eye inside a large mouthlike eyelid. "...cuz here comes Phantoon!"

Phantoon was an evil, ethereal specter mostly intangible and thus invulnerable to any form of attack, except for his single eye. He fed off raw energy without directly interfacing with wires or equipment and had only been seen drawn to sources of energy from abandoned ships. Many speculate him to be able to tap into Mother Brain's "vicious brainwaves", meaning that either Mother Brain herself may have some control over him, or that Phantoon simply fed off of her energy. Whatever the reason may have been, it was safe to assume Colonel Bahamut and Dr. Mandrake siphoned him and the other boss monsters from Super Metroid for the sake of delaying the Contras' efforts.

The high-ranked, albeit undead, Space Pirate surrounded himself with a circle of fiery phantom eyes, whilst shedding a few from his mouth like tears that bounced along the ground. Yuffie's go-to response when fighting undead creatures, was casting Cure on Phantoon's main eye, hurting him a bit. Lance followed up by blasting it with a single Crash Missile, sending Phantoon into a frenzy. Roaring in pain like a kaiju (though different from Draygon's), the boss monster closed his eye, detached himself from the physical realm, and rematerialized on the ceiling to remain intangible for eight crescent waves of flaming phantom eyes at maximum velocity. The effects of Yuffie's Shell spell negated the unavoidable damage by half, but at the cost of the Crash Missiles on Lance's Contra Rifle. Unsurprisingly, the flames were filled with Phazon, yet the duo's anti-Phazon armorsuits managed to neutralize its ability to corrupt their bodies for as long as the shielding lasted.

They could only bat away few of the phantom eyes at a time, but as soon as it was over, Lance equipped the Flamethrower power-up in order to avoid repeating Phantoon's enraged attack pattern, lest he risk getting his and Yuffie's armorsuits destroyed. The specter floated around in a figure-eight nonstop, shedding more flaming phantom eyes from his mouth that Yuffie destroyed with her Conformer. Phantoon's body gradually shifted from green to a hot red-orange as he took more and more damage. Even teleporting from one place to another wasn't enough to keep him from losing the battle. Upon his defeat, his eye remained looking in the same direction as he began to fade in and out rapidly, a series of small explosions erupting all over his body. With his last breath, he waved around the entire room wider and more violent until he dissipated, never to return.

[End BGM]
[Victory BGM: You Win! (EarthBound)]

"Phew..." Yuffie wiped the sweat from her forehead. "We did it, Lance...but I think my body armor took a lotta damage."

"And just in the nick of time, too. We're fortunate the damage isn't severe." Lance noted the shield levels on his and her anti-Phazon suits. Just then, the wrecked ship started vanishing into nothingness too, leaving Lance, Yuffie, and even the KO'ed Deathbringer out in the jungle near the water once again. "So it was all an illusion, yet it felt so real. Again, we blame Phazon for this phenomenon."

Leaving the brutish terrorist behind to "rest", Lance attempted to contact his teammates. "Crap, nothing but static. I think Z might know the reason why our communicators aren't working, but we'll have to make for Mt. Hellraiser and fast."

"Right with you, boss!" In her excitement, Yuffie sped off first with Lance following suit.

[End BGM]

TO BE CONTINUED...

Posted by: WarioMan Feb 19 2017, 08:32 AM
Chapter 8: Summit of the Mountain King

[Interlude BGM: Rukifellth's Theme (Bomberman 64: The Second Attack!)]

"It last thing Deathbringer remember," the wounded brute addressed his reason for failing the assassination to his caped boss, "when red man with blue ribbon on head deliver uppercut to face."

"This is what happens when I have to trust men like you to do the job," Octane sneered at her lumbering cohort. "But I swear, the next time I see the Contras, I'll be sure to thank them for leaving me frozen solid."

"...And that's your excuse?" rebuked Colonel Bahamut.

One of the armored grunts replied, "We did what we could, sir."

"Did you?! Did you all fight to the last man?!"

Octane scoffed, "You get what you pay for when Deathbringer and I joined your ranks."

But the Gerudo Pirate captain said the wrong thing. Bahamut got in her and Deathbringer's faces and spat out, "Are you saying you want more money? You want to be rewarded for failure?! I oughta waste the likes of you now and..." He turned over to his other subordinates, perhaps the only ones who didn't have a pitiable excuse for failing him thus far. "Mandrake, Great Bomber, the failures are all yours."

"So you command, so it shall be done," the dark-caped android acknowledged coldly, "my power will do more than stun." When his rhyme was over, he let loose a stream of lightning from his hands to electrify half the surviving group of soldiers to death, whereas Mandrake sentenced the other half to a series of cruel, unethical experiments regarding mutation.

"To be frank, I don't know what I'd do without both the alien DNA and Phazon," said the elderly doctor, freezing his accomplices' bodies with a stun beam from his raygun. "But don't worry, this won't hurt a bit..."

Deathbringer could only kneel before the colonel. "Deathbringer and Octane do better job at killing Contras and their partners this time!"

"Don't bother," retorted Bahamut, "you've already lost your chance. I personally sent the Hate Bombers to the surface on Mt. Hellraiser to pick up where the two of you flunked a simple mission. Now get out of my sight, unless you plan to volunteer to be guinea pigs in Dr. Mandrake's experiments!"

Octane gasped in fear. "R-right away, master..."

Deathbringer, however, was not worried one bit. "Hmph. It not matter what happen anyway."

As the pair left Colonel Bahamut's lair, Dr. Mandrake saw Regulus standing idly by a wall. "Ah yes...the blue android we can trust to cover up for our subordinates' failures. Surely you wouldn't mind partaking in the audience, while I perform my dark experiments on my brand new guinea pigs?" He cackled as the stunned grunts were taken away by a remote-controlled floating platform.

"...Doctor, you nauseate me." Having expressed a lack of interest and emotion, Regulus walked away, leaving Mandrake to sigh in disappointment.

"Everybody's a critic. Oh well, at least I still get to have my fun... Now, what shall I turn you bunglers into, hmm? Lizalfos? Stalfos? Facehuggers, even? Hard to say when there are so many possibilities, wouldn't you agree?"

The moment Mandrake took the exit with his "guinea pigs", Colonel Bahamut could not help smirking at the scene. "Red Falcon and his Hate Bombers were right on the money after all; the more vicious mutants we have, the better. I am, however, surprised...yet amused at the same time...that Arctic Bomber of all people among heroes would be this stupid to use one of the most despised drugs in history. So, what do you think of my plan now, Doyle? Are you ready to die in the same manner as General Rupert did when you ruined my coup d'├ętat? The power of Phazon can never be stopped from spreading across the entire planet!" His evil laughter rang out all over the base, the colonel not caring if it disgusted Regulus even more.

[End BGM]

--------------------

[Interlude BGM: Dark Terror (Advance Wars: Dual Strike)]

Somewhere on Galuga Island at the mountain trail of Mt. Hellraiser, an armored scout reported his sightings to the Hate Bombers. "Lord Sniper Bomber, the Contras have defeated Kraid, Phantoon and Draygon, and are headed this way!"

"Good." But without warning, Sniper Bomber heartlessly killed the underling with an electric headshot from what used to be his sniper rifle arm with armor-piercing bullets, similar to that of an AWP. "Then we Hate Bombers step out of hiding and do what we do best, whereas you alone lived to tell the story. Therefore, your services are no longer needed."

Axe Bomber added, "I gotta say, that new Lightning Gun of yours is even deadlier when mixed with Phazon!"

"Or the other two armaments on your gun arm: the Flak Cannon and the Anti-Contra Rifle," said Volcano Bomber, casting a volcanic spell he came to call "Explosion" on the dead scout to incinerate his remains instantly with a blast of molten lava.

The green-armored leader of the Hate Bombers raised his right arm in victory. "The moment they realize that I hold the power to use their own technology against them, such as the Spread Gun, it'll be too late." He demonstrated his point by transforming said arm into a perfect replica of an AK-47. "No longer do I need a Smash Ball just to be able to attack in machine gun mode. Death to the Contras! Death to all who oppose us and Lord Red Falcon!"

Axe pounded his transformable axe-like hands against each other. "And I don't have to worry anymore about my gatling guns overheating! Don't you just love it when we turn every weakness into a strength?"

"Enough talk. We have work to do." Sniper pulled out a crudely-made C4 with his left hand, comprised of a small box of clay with a computer chip and a keypad atop, both wired directly to its pack of high explosives.

"Do we get to kill, destroy, maim, rip and crush the Contras?!" the brown, 512-lb. Heavy-Duty Chopper laughed insanely. "We got nothing to fear now, whether Lord Red Falcon's dead or alive!"

Sniper groaned in annoyance at his loyal partner's unneeded redundancy. "We get it, Axe. We know. Honestly, sometimes I think you hog all the Phazon for yourself."

"We're already as evil as we could ever hope to be! Unlike that wussy idiot, Purple Basilisk, who I heard on the Undernet thinks whatever we do is 'psychotically cruel and unforgiving'..." Axe put on a mocking tone of voice as he spoke the words in quotes. "Bah! Can you believe that, Sniper? War, cruelty and genocide are what true dictators strive for!"

The Hellfire Fiend, having had enough of his oversized partner's boasting, spoke the following words dryly, "We know what we strive for, now shut up and help me with my Hell Bombs."

"Killjoy," scoffed Axe, walking into the volcano's interior with his fellow Hate Bombers. But little did they know a mysterious shadow had used the darkness from the cloudy, night skies to eavesdrop on their conversation, not that it concerned them at the very least.

--------------------

[Stage BGM: Lighthouse (Pokemon HeartGold/SoulSilver)]

Mission 5: Hell-raising ascent
With Kraid, Phantoon and Draygon destroyed, the Contras reunite at the foot of the mountain trail on Mt. Hellraiser as briefed by Z's intel. However, they will have to keep Arctic Bomber under control before she steals too much Phazon for herself, as radiation and drug abuse are a lethal combination.
There they hope to encounter and defeat Ridley in battle, but we fear other dangerous surprises may be in store for them.
January 5, 20XX
11:10 PM


This had to be the place where Z set the rendezvous point, so the heroes thought amongst themselves. But the moment the three groups reunited with one another, to their surprise Arctic Bomber was acting unusual and crazy like a drug addict. "More Phazon...I've gotta have more of them before Red Falcon's sleazy goons use the stuff! More...POWER!"

Aaron was quick to tackle her. "OW! Let...GO OF ME...AARON! I'm trying to save you and your fellow Contras from Phazon Corruption!"

"But not when you're stealing the substance for yourself. You know it's extremely dangerous! Arctic...we can only pray you don't believe that bullcrap about Phazon making you strong. That stuff'll kill you before it ever saves you."

"I don't care!" Try as she could, the ex-baddie was unable to break free.

The man with glasses was not in the mood for a wrestling match. He had to snap her out of it, now. "I hate to do this to you, Arctic, but this is for your own GOOD!" He slapped her in the face, hard, loosening her grip on "her" dual P90s.

"...Aaron? Ami? Bill? Lance? I...I messed up. I'm not myself."

"Hey, hey, take it easy," said Ami, noting the ice princess's unnatural changes in eye color and the vine-like Phazon growths on her face. "Whatever trouble you're in, we'll pull you out of it."

"R-right..." Just then, the Mistress of the Cold felt something uneasy welling inside of her. She clutched onto her belly with both hands. "I...ulp...don't feel...so good..."

Immediately the foursome took off her helmet, revealing her messy blonde hair as she coughed up some Phazon vomit out of her mouth, and onto the rocky surface. Bill and Lance held her by the shoulders to help ease the pain. But for Aaron and Ami, it wasn't like Arctic to let her hair get all messed up...

One thing they knew for certain: she was now at stage 3, with one of the symptoms being extreme nausea and vomiting. Still, they hoped for their sake she didn't develop "Phazon Addiction" as sources called it. "What..." Arctic coughed in between her words. "...is...all this...doing in...my mouth?"

"Whoa whoa whoa, keep still, Arctic," said Blaze. "Don't talk now. Just...wait until after you're done coughing all the bad stuff out."

A moment later, the Mistress of the Cold had finished removing any excess Phazon from Kraid's drugged pizza she ingested. "Okay..." she panted. "I'm...done now..."

"You alright, Arctic?" asked Bill. "Can you stand up?"

"I...think I can still fight..."

"Here, just do me a favor for a little bit." Then he knelt down to Arctic's level and showed her a peace sign with his left hand, as though he were doing a standardized field sobriety test. He held his Contra Rifle with the other hand, pointed down on the ground. "How many fingers am I holding up?"

Arctic shook her head back and forth to get her bearings straight, standing up on her knee for support. "Uh...two, I think?"

"At least you can still see. Alright, Lance and I are gonna say a few words to you, and we want you to repeat after us."

"I crave Phazon no more," instructed Lance. "Now you say it."

The ex-baddie gulped in nervousness, wanting to get over her unhealthy addiction for her own sake but somehow can't. "I...errr...I...I crave Phazon no more."

"Good work, Arctic Bomber!" chirped Yuffie. "Keep at it!"

"I crave Phazon no more."

"And that should do it for now," noted Blaze Bomber. "Let's meet up with Z, but remember to stick together. It's still dark outside."

No sooner than they departed did the hooded spy appear in front of them with a flashlight on. "You made it! Is Arctic feeling alright?"

"Wait, you saw the whole thing and...nevermind," said Yumi.

"I was on the lookout for Regulus. I found out he's been eager to fight you guys himself."

[Interrupt BGM]
[Alert BGM: Black Power (Mega Man Battle Network 5: Double Team DS)]

But out of nowhere, a blue streak warped in too, having followed Z's footprints. "You couldn't be more right, spy. Ahh...Aaron, Ami, Bill and Lance. It's been a long time."

"Save the introductions for later," said Aaron. "I'm only gonna ask you once, but in a polite manner: How do we find and shut down the radar-jammer Z told us about?"

"Tch. He leaked the information, didn't he? That big mouth of a spy, and yet he's standing right next to you. Perfect."

Z stepped in front of Aaron's team, intent on distracting Regulus. "Stay back, everyone! I'll take him on!"

"Hmph, fine by me. We'll take the battle to the top of the towering helipad by the summit. And Contras, if I were you, I wouldn't dare think of disappointing me." He leaped off to the top of Mt. Hellraiser.

"I'll keep him busy while you make your way through the lava caverns. A giant fire creature named Crocomire is lurking within, but that's not the only problem. I also overheard the Hate Bombers plan to trigger a volcano eruption with Volcano Bomber's Hell Bombs!"

Ami gasped, with a mixture of both shock and confusion. "Hell Bombs? Are you serious?"

Yumi added, "I'm gonna assume he either upgraded himself since our last encounter, or he never used any to begin with."

"We'll be careful, Z, and good luck!"

[End BGM]

--------------------

Elsewhere, the Hate Bombers were busy planting a C4 in a lava tube as part of the plan to kill the Contras and their two honorary members. Axe Bomber, however, fumbled about whilst trying to remember the sequence of numbers he was supposed to press on the keypad.

"I know, I know! The code! Jeez... Now what was it again? 7-3-5-5-6-0-8, enter." He mouthed out the numbers as he typed in the code for the C4, wired next to Volcano Bomber's Hell Bombs, and pushed the enter button upon saying the last word himself.

"Good," said Volcano Bomber. "Now we must take our leave within ten minutes, while the Contras are left to be incinerated alive."

But Axe wasn't worried. Instead of running away with his cohorts, he sat on the ticking time bomb. While they had taken off without looking behind themselves, they were unaware he wasn't following suit at all...

--------------------

[Resume Stage BGM]

With a seemingly neverending swarm of Space Pirates and corrupt soldiers milling about, Bill and Lance saw it fit to try out their Final Smash attacks alongside Aaron and Ami. By using the Smash Balls Blaze Bomber generated with his power-up generator, they gathered enough energy for the Spread Gun EX and Homing Missiles EX. However, Smash Balls would have to be produced sparingly, as each one takes up a lot of battery juice, and the generator itself must recharge every once in a while. For the next 20 seconds, Bill and/or Lance could retain the upgraded versions of the original Spread Gun and Homing Missiles, regardless of whether they had taken damage or not.

And by the time their Final Smashes wore off, Arctic stretched out her arms and spun around, yelling "Out of the way, everybody! DUCK!" As the others crouched to avoid Phazon fire, she unloaded on the stragglers with "her" P90s, emptying their magazine clips as she went full-on Rambo. As soon as she was out of bullets, rather than reload she threw the submachine guns at a small group of Space Pirate Aerotroopers, knocking two of them off balance momentarily. "Let's see what my SG5 Commando can do!" She brought out the aforementioned assault rifle from her back with its laser sight on, and, again, emptied whatever amount of bullets were left in its clip. While she hadn't bothered to look through its mounted scope, some of her shots were lucky to land a critical blow on the jetpacks, detonating them on the Space Pirates that were in turn blown to smithereens. When Arctic was out of ammo, she grabbed some rifle bullets from the dead terrorists' AK-47s and SG5 Commandos, in spite of her complete lack of knowledge on all the different bullet sizes, and which ones were suited for which gun.

"Arctic, I strongly caution you against wasting bullets," advised Lance. "The guns you're using don't have infinite ammo like ours do. Fire in short bursts at distant targets."

"Yeah? Well I don't see either of you three doing that."

"That's because our Contra Rifles were not only blessed with holy power; they're also custom-built to have unlimited bullets regardless of their current power-ups."

"Still," added Aaron, "we always take care to shoot wisely, rather than recklessly, depending on what we're equipped with."

At the end of the skirmish, the Mistress of the Cold picked up an AK-47 and strapped it to her back for later use. Then the Contras and their two honorary members hijacked the Power Loaders, each of which were illegally modified with large drill-shaped arms rather than their usual claws for loading cargo. Apparently the terrorists were going to dig big holes into the lava tubes as some form of trap for the heroes.

[End BGM]
[Fight BGM: Creature From Outer Space (Super Contra (Arcade))]

Minutes after drilling their way inside, a large reddish creature swiped them off the hijacked Power Loaders, and tore away at the machines before focusing his attention on them. Resembling that of a crocodile, except with multiple eyes and a vaguely humanoid body, long arms and large legs, the creature moved in close. "It's him..." stated Aaron. "Crocomire."

The boss monster opened up his mouth for an attempt to gobble down the heroes, but they returned fire by focusing their attacks on the weak spot. He didn't take damage, yet the force of the blows seemed to knock him backwards a bit. He came forth, they knocked him back, the cycle appeared to go on endlessly. "It's like no matter how we attack his open mouth," panted Yuffie, "he just keeps coming back for more - and I'm almost out of mystic energy for my White Magic! I've been keeping it afloat with all the Ethers I bought, just trying to restrain Arctic Bomber from stealing anymore Phazon for herself!"

"If my hunch is correct, there should be a lava pool not too far ahead in this cavern. It'll be just like the way Ami and I defeated Axe Bomber back on Dinosaur Land."

Ami looked at Aaron with a hint of concern. "So that means we..."

"...Yes. We have to, like in Super Metroid. There's no other option for us to put Crocomire out of his misery." Without warning, Space Pirate troopers charged in from behind. "Great, more company. Ami, keep hammering away with your Ice Bombs; the rest of us will hold them off. Arctic, you help Ami."

"You don't have to tell me twice!" Arctic jumped forth to unload more Phazon bullets on Crocomire's gaping maw, causing him to roar in pain like a kaiju. Ami could have sworn he, like Phantoon, sounded similar to Titanosaurus from the Godzilla movies she and Yumi used to watch in Japan. Arctic, on the other hand, threw a series of icy punches and kicks, enraging Crocomire into grabbing her with his claws. Ami's go-to response was blasting his mouth with her Ice Bombs, loosening his grip on the Contras' former enemy. But as Crocomire continued stumbling backwards to avoid taking more damage to his uvula, he unknowingly stepped on a weakened, rocky bridge that gave away due to his oppressive weight, causing him to fall in. Ami and Arctic jumped back to dodge the splashing magma. The lava creature cried in agony as his red skin melted, leaving the skeleton intact.

Yet somehow...he managed to resurface and jump back out of the magma...

And collapsed into a large pile of bones on the rocky ground, just as the other heroes had finished driving out the Space Pirates.

Even after years of playing Super Metroid, Ami still felt sorry for the way Crocomire had to be defeated in order to make progress.

[End BGM]

"Well, that's about it, Aaron," she said.

He placed his hand on her shoulders. "I know how you feel, Ami. It had to be done."

--------------------

[Tension BGM: Tension Before a Core X (Metroid Fusion)]

Far away from Mt. Hellraiser, the two Hate Bombers were waiting out in a swampy jungle for the eruption to occur. "In less than a minute, Mt. Hellraiser will give the 'Flames of Hell' a new meaning," said Volcano Bomber.

"Hey! Where's Axe Bomber?" Sniper Bomber looked around, realizing at last that he didn't even follow them out of the volcano. "Grrr, that idiot! We're going back into the lava tube!" He shot and killed two patrolling Space Pirate Aerotroopers with his Lightning Gun, intent on stealing their jetpacks for himself and Volcano Bomber.

But when they returned to the site where they planted the C4 and Volcano's Hell Bombs, they noticed Axe was still sitting on the explosive charge. "Oh, it's you guys. I was just making sure nobody ever dared try to defuse all the bombs without a fight against me, that's all."

Now in a more bitter mood, Sniper glared at his masochistic partner. "Axe, consider yourself lucky us Hate Bombers never leave each other to die, for we are like the embodiments of Lord Red Falcon himself. He can't live without us, but we cannot live without him either. NOW COME ON!"

"Oh, will you quit spazzing out so much?! We're already reinforced with better protection than Super Titanium, remember? Hell, it's not like I'll be that easy to--"

Before he could finish his last sentence, the explosive charge detonated, sending him sprawling with his backside on fire towards Volcano and Sniper. "WHOOOOOOOOOAAAAA-HO-HO-HO-O-O!!!" He smashed into them on the spot, with everyone doubling up in pain upon impact whereas the combined force sent them crashing all the way out of the volcano through the chamber, and back into the swampy jungle.

The Hellfire Fiend grunted, trying hard but failing to get out of the swamp and Axe Bomber's oppressive weight. "Axe...get...OFF!!"

"First rule of terrorism," Sniper reminded harshly, "NEVER stand next to or sit on a C4 primed for detonation!"

"Okay okay, I'm sorry!" the Heavy-Duty Chopper groaned in annoyance. "Gosh, you're really such a friggin' killjoy, y'know that?!"

"Oh, shut up! Ever since Bahamut and Mandrake gave us Phazon, you've been acting like an arrogant ass!" The Hate Bombers struggled to loosen themselves out of the pile, and back on their feet. "Look, let's return to base immediately, but first..."

"What have you in mind, Sniper?" wondered Volcano.

The leader took a sniper's stance. "Hmm hmm hmm...You just sit back and leave the rest to the King of the Snipers..." With a sinister look on his face, he began to aim down his sight with his Lightning Gun.

[End BGM]

--------------------

[Danger BGM: Kanto Rival/Champion Battle (Pokemon Anime Sound Collection)]

The Contras and their two honorary members felt a strong tension inside the lava tube. Blaze Bomber used his Scan Visor to determine the current situation, the end result being far from a pretty sight. "Everyone out, now!"

"What's going on?"

"No time to explain, Yuffie! It's just as Z warned us: the Hate Bombers must have triggered an eruption with Volcano's Hell Bombs! We've got to escape!" The earthquake became increasingly violent inside the cavern, prompting everyone to leave behind the skeletal remains of Crocomire and evacuate with their lives still intact, outrunning the deadly torrent of magma in the process.

"I think we made it out alive!" beamed Yumi.

"We're not out of the frying pan or the fire yet," warned Bill. "We have to get to the summit first, and to the top of the helipad by the volcano! Maybe if we get our hands on some jetpacks..."

"You couldn't be more right, buddy," Lance pointed at the Space Pirate Aerotroopers. "It's worth a shot!"

--------------------

Regulus and Z were busy in their one-on-one battle at the abandoned helipad, yet neither one flinched. "You still think you have what it takes to stop me, Z?"

"Regulus, I'd surrender now if I were you. HEE-YAH!" They continued trading blows with each other, until without warning, a deadly bolt of lightning struck Z in the head, killing him instantly. "GUURRGH!"

Dammit! Not now... thought the blue android.

--------------------

"Guys..." panicked Arctic Bomber, "if we're gonna use the jetpacks, NOW'S THE TIME!"

"Hang tight, Arctic!" assured Yuffie. "We'll be outta danger as soon as possible, I promise!"

"I will never, ever, EVER steal Phazon again as long as I'm alive! I'm sorry I went rogue on you and hogged some of the bad stuff for myself!"

"Less chat, more shooting!" Yumi blasted out a barrage of sound riffs from her guitar. "The lava's getting closer!"

The Contras managed to swat away the Aerotroopers without detonating the jetpacks, and swiped them as their method of escape, leaving the Pirates to plummet to their deaths. Once activated, they wasted no time flying out of danger - and just in the nick of time before the lava could engulf them!

[End BGM]

But when they reached the helipad, they were greeted with terrible news, and a dying Z. "Aaron...Ami...Bill...Lance...I've taken too much damage..."

Aaron knelt down to the spy's level. "Hang in there, Z! Who did this to you?"

"Out of nowhere...while I was keeping Regulus busy for as long as I could..."

Ami spoke up, "Keep still. We'll find whoever killed you, we promise."

"...I'm sorry...I couldn't stop the attack...but you're getting much closer to the truth..."

"Z, if you're really Max in disguise, we'll avenge you on behalf of Cheerful White and Cute Pink," assured Aaron.

"Go...now...Con...tras..." His body shut off and died, directing their attention towards the aforementioned opponent.

"Regulus!" shouted Lance.

"We meet again, and after such a long time."

Bill interrupted, "Cut the courtesies. What the hell have you done with Z?!"

"What happened to him doesn't matter. What really matters is we have a score to settle. Just the four of you, and me. The rest of you, stand down! But I'd suggest making yourselves useful and see that nobody interferes with our fight. Especially Ridley and the Space Pirates!"

Yumi nodded. "Hmm...Right. Ami, you and your three buddies be careful, okay?"

"Aren't we always?" The pink-haired pop star readied her fighter's stance with dual Fire Bombs in both hands.

--------------------

[Interlude BGM: Deep Within Team Galactic HQ!! (Pokemon Diamond/Pearl)]

Meanwhile, two of Colonel Bahamut's followers were pursuing the Contras from inside an attack helicopter, the dreaded Mil Mi-24 used by the Russian Air Force today. It would stand to reason that the Red Falcon Empire may have stolen its technology during or after World War III. "Hey Cobra, look over there!" Swampster called to his partner. "You seein' what I think I'm seein'?!"

"Of course I do. They're fighting Regulus right now, which should give us the chance to--"

Swampster flared up before Yellow Cobra could finish his sentence. "I KNEW IT! Colonel Bahamut's plannin' on replacin' me with Regulus! But I won't let him..." He pointed his rifle at the alien cyborg. "...And with your help, I'll stop him, and blow that blue android AND the Contras straight ta hell in one fell swoop!"

"Are you insane?! I'm no First Lieutenant like Purple Basilisk used to be, but I know one when I see one!"

"But that's MY post, and Regulus's anglin' to steal it right under my nose! Now here's what we'll do: we kill them all, and make it look like a fatal accident caused by a volcano eruption. And don't even think about fleein' unless you want me ta put a bullet through your head!"

Now it came to the Second Lieutenant's mind, that Swampster had abused Phazon too much as it is. "I'm really going to hate myself for helping you take out one of our own associates after this..."

--------------------

Rather than attack Regulus head-on, the original four Contras decided to practice what they preach by reasoning with him, only resorting to combat should all other options be lost. "Regulus, tell me something. Did you or did you not kill Z before we arrived?"

"It wasn't me, Lance! It wasn't supposed to be like this before you showed up!"

It didn't take long for his words to sink in, leading the Contras to realize something was off about the spy's apparent death.

"If you didn't...then who did kill him?"

"Aaron...I think I know. It was someone who, along with his sinister allies, hates you and your kind with extreme vengeance. Only <i>he</i> would get a clear shot that far from here."

Bill came to a realization without the need for another hint. "Sniper Bomber! That sick-ass bastard...!"

[End BGM]
[Boss BGM: VS Ghor (Metroid Prime 3: Corruption)]

Suddenly, waves of deadly rockets came streaking across the cloudy skies, prompting Arctic Bomber and Blaze Bomber to activate their tag team attack: the Particle Bomb. It involved combining fire and ice powers into a lethal explosion, but because Arctic's body was polluted with Phazon and Blaze's wasn't, the attack could not be pulled off. They both needed to be in perfect harmony in order for it to work. He had to improvise by giving Aaron, Bill and Lance the Homing Missiles power-ups to counteract the missiles. However, his power-up generator didn't have enough energy to produce another Smash Ball, leaving it up to them to stop the onslaught.

Right, this hunt ends NOW! Swampster yelled over the intercom. You've all been a bloody thorn in my side long enough, but I didn't expect Regulus ta show up an' steal my thunder! Yellow Cobra, ATTACK!

Arctic retaliated by emptying "her" SG5 Commando's ammo clip, prompting Regulus to order her against going any further. "You're wasting bullets on this machine! Here, use the rocket launchers!" He pried open a box of RPGs. "Guess we'll have to save our battle for some other time."

"What about Z?" asked Ami.

"I'll explain everything as soon as we bring Swampster and Yellow Cobra's vehicle crashing down. Now help me out here if you want to live!"

The ex-Hate Bomber, having finished using up the SG5's ammunition, froze it into a makeshift javelin with her ice powers, hurling it as hard and far as possible at the rotor blades. Though it could not reach its intended target, it hit the cockpit instead, knocking the lone-wolf terrorists off balance for a bit. "On a personal note," she said to herself, "I prefer the AK-47."

We'll see about that, stupid girl! glared Yellow Cobra, leaning the Mil Mi-24 closer. I made my mistake by letting you live once; never again!

"Quick, destroy it with the rocket launchers!" shouted Regulus, launching one projectile after another from his own bazooka at the chopper. It retaliated by firing a stream of armor-piercing shells and heat-seeking missiles at the mobile squad on the helipad, the enemy pilots not caring if they blew it to pieces as long as they scored their kills. After a while of trading blows, the team succeeded in downing the Mil Mi-24, just as they ran out of rockets.

Swampster screamed, AAAARRRGH!! We'll be back again ta kill you, stupid Contras! You, your honorary lackeys, an' that job-stealin' double-crosser! Even if I have ta-- The series of explosions sent him and Yellow Cobra careening out of sight as the pirated chopper detonated in a large ball of fire, with shrapnel wounds to their mutant bodies.

[End BGM]

Yuffie sighed in relief. "Good riddance to bad rubbish like them!"

"Now that we've taken down the stronger foe..."

[Briefing BGM: Charshoe X (Contra: Hard Corps)]

Blaze Bomber interrupted Regulus, "No. It's pointless to continue fighting. We've all suffered battle scars here and there during Swampster and Yellow Cobra's intervention."

"Just hear me out before you go. I didn't come all the way back here to save you, but my being the strongest warrior in the universe don't mean nothing if you were to die before I return to settle the score. I'll be damned if I ever let anyone else kill you, because if anyone's gonna tan your hide, it's me. That hooded robot you saw just now was a duplicate. I've been spying on Red Falcon's supporters and sympathizers in secrecy, leaking as much confidential information as I could in the hopes that you would get it."

Ami thought for a moment as the truth sank in. "So you disguised yourself as Z the whole time...Then that means Max isn't dead after all, nor was he here to begin with. He's a friend of White's, from planet Bomber."

Regulus scoffed. "I don't know much about this Max character, but all you need to know is you're getting much closer to Colonel Bahamut's secret base of operations. When the Hate Bombers got suspicious of my ideals that don't involve genocide and cruelty, I immediately stole a blank robot without being seen and copied my data over to it on the computer I hooked the robot to, thereby transforming it into my hooded disguise to keep the enemy sidetracked. I'll distract Bahamut's drudges while you take out the radar-jammer and the hidden base, but we have to be quick about it because I overheard they're planning to launch a full-scale assault on Diamond City."

Arctic Bomber gasped in shock and anger. "Countless innocent lives will be lost! Aargh, those freaking cowards!"

"You took the words out of my mouth, Arctic Bomber. These people nauseate me to no end, specifically the Hate Bombers. Take care of yourselves, and I'll see you on the other side."

[End BGM]

--------------------

As soon as they parted ways to deal with their objectives, the eight heroes descended back into Mt. Hellraiser, only now it was safe once again after it had finished erupting. Still, they took it slow on their jetpacks so they wouldn't collide with the magma inside. Once they saw a rock formation move away as though it were a gate, they stepped inside, took off the jetpacks, and carefully approached the Hate Bombers' hidden base of operations...

[Alert BGM: The Gestahl Empire (Final Fantasy VI Advance)]

"This is the end for you!" Colonel Bahamut's sinister laughter rang out, prompting the large wall to open up in the seemingly dark, empty corridor. The lights came on, revealing the big bad himself alongside Dr. Mandrake and the three Hate Bombers, backed up by several well-armed terrorists.

"Here we are again, losers!" Axe Bomber gloated in a crazed manner. "One teensy little step, and Sniper's new-and-improved gun arm will make your heads go SPLAT!"

Blaze Bomber grunted, "Dang it! An old trick in the book and we fell for it!"

"Regulus thought his spying on us would allow you to slip by unnoticed," informed Volcano Bomber. "He is sadly mistaken, and will pay for his defection from the Red Falcon Empire."

"Dr. Mandrake, why are you doing this to everyone?" demanded Ami.

"Doctor," said the colonel, "would you kindly explain to the lady why we're doing all this?"

"I'd be honored to. You see, fools, I am sick and tired of this weakling government! Having obtained such a magnificent specimen as Red Falcon's DNA shortly after the Alien Wars, they squander the opportunity by locking it away in a freaking vault! The colonel feels the same as I do, and will help me achieve my plans. Now I can carry on with my dark experiments!"

Arctic Bomber growled angrily, "Why you treacherous little...!"

"Well Mandrake, I'll be leaving the rest up to you." Bahamut walked away with a smug grin on his face, sure of his victory over the Contras.

"There is no way to escape, for we already have the advantage," explained Dr. Mandrake. "Thanks to the wondrous game boss-summoning technology we pirated from Purple Basilisk, we have all the Space Pirate troopers we need to carry out our plans. The fool only uses it for petty reasons, unaware of the true potential it possesses. You must surrender peacefully, or die."

"Even if we do, you'd kill us anyway, you old fartmeister!" Yuffie pounded the ground in frustration.

"Yuffie, we don't have a choice," Lance told her quietly so the "good doctor" wouldn't hear. "Given the Phazon Corruption's current status within our bodies, chances are we'll end up dead before we could even try to fight our way out. Surrendering to the mad doctor just might get us closer to the source of our communicator problem. Once we find the radar-jammer, we'll take it out and spoil the genocidal plot at the same time, whatever it is. Plus, it's imperative that all our friends in Diamond City know about it before it's too late. You, Yumi and Blaze are by far the only ones who weren't exposed to Phazon."

The teen ninja sighed in defeat. "Fine...we'll play along for now."

Mandrake grinned at his potential "experiments" and walked over to his troops. "Good choice. Men, seize those cowards here and there! Take them to the Space Pirate Tower at once!" He took his leave too, as did the Hate Bombers. "...And I'll deal with Regulus later. He thinks he can get away with disguising himself and leaking our plans to the insolent Contras, but he'll suffer the consequences soon enough."

Listening in, Sniper Bomber replied, "Yes, the very moment we get our hands on him. It is all for the coming of his untimely death, and the realization of our ultimate dream."

[End BGM]

TO BE CONTINUED...

Posted by: WarioMan Apr 22 2017, 07:16 AM
Chapter 9: Prison break

[Interlude BGM: Theme of Nebula (Mega Man Battle Network 5: Double Team DS)]

"Hmm hmm hmm...Did everyone have a nice nap in the cryogenic chambers?"

Those were the first words the six Contras and their two trusted friends heard, when they had awakened from who knows what happened, since the night of their capture. No longer were they at the bottom of Mt. Hellraiser but inside what Dr. Mandrake briefly mentioned the "Space Pirate Tower", they were detained from behind with all the prison guards pointing guns at them inside a large chamber. Its center sported a huge screen as though a projector were displaying it, with Colonel Bahamut's satisfied look on his face. One of the guards, however, held onto the team's weapons, albeit surprisingly not feeling pain from holy power.

"Welcome to my headquarters. Is it not pleasing to you?"

Arctic Bomber shot back, "You can drop the smirk, you old codger. We're gonna trash this place!" A nearby prison guard stunned her with a Phazon-fueled taser, weakening her resistance to the Corruption yet again.

"That won't be necessary, although from my point of view, you just don't seem to get it at all. Bringing in the Phazon along with the Space Pirates from your precious Metroid series is all part of the plan, which - unfortunately for you - is already in its final stages."

Arctic grunted weakly. "What're you...talking about...?"

Colonel Bahamut chuckled sadistically. "Still trying to cheat death, Arctic? Even after your blundering stupidity from Phazon usage? No matter...I have transferred all functions to the very top of this tower, from which we intend to convert into a massively offensive military satellite. Therefore, the headquarters is of no more use, as it will soon be detonated. You will all die, just like Regulus the traitor."

The armored terrorists gasped in shock, one of whom had the gall to object. "But Colonel, you can't--"

"Ha! Your existence means less than nothing to me, you flea! Farewell; we'll not meet again!" As the holographic monitor shut itself off, a chain of explosions erupted all over the chamber, causing all the enemy soldiers to flee for their lives whereas the Contras mustered enough strength to break their own bonds in the confusion. The guard that was holding the weapons, however, tossed them to the heroes.

"We've gotta get the hell out now," called Aaron, undoing Yuffie's bonds with her own Conformer, "or we're toast! This way!"

"That fiendish creep is dead serious about killing us!" Ami panted in fear, despite having freed Yumi without hesitation. "Is he really this inhuman?"

The guard revealed himself to be Regulus via a holographic generator belt. How he was able to touch the holy gadgets without rejection, was but a question for another time. "Sorry to have waited until the last second to rescue you. I did say I never planned on coming back to Earth just to do so, but I am a man of my word after all. I had to think of a way to fool my pursuers into thinking they killed me."

Yuffie interrupted, "Can we talk about this later? I don't plan on any of us going home a bunch of scorched corpses!"

"Thought you'd never ask. And by the way, you might want to check your weapons..."

[End BGM]

--------------------

[Danger BGM: Eyes Glinting in Darkness (Dungeons & Dragons: Shadow over Mystara)]

Just a klick ahead, the prison guards continued fleeing for their lives, dropping their own weapons on the floor to optimize their running speed. But without warning, an oval-shaped space pod with a beam cannon underneath floated over them, its cockpit opening up to reveal Dr. Geo Mandrake. He cared nothing for their safety, only his own twisted desire for more "test subjects."

"Hold still! This is what happens to cowards like you!" With a sadistic grin, he fired a triangular ray from his personal craft, mutating all of them into a variety of alien creatures: saber-toothed tadpoles, hopping insectoids and crab-walking beasts.

"Whoa!" exclaimed Yumi. "He did that to his own men?!"

"We're fortunate Dr. Crygor is nothing like this madman," assured Blaze Bomber.

"I'll keep him busy while I secure a vehicle for our escape," said Regulus. "The rest of you guys blow up the radar-jammer immediately!"

He ran off to do his part, with Dr. Mandrake pursuing him in retaliation. "Oh no, it won't be that easy, Regulus. This time, stay dead!"

"Now's our chance to--" But upon activating her Bomberman Watch, Ami received an electric shock to her body before she could finish her sentence, followed by the watch displaying a skull-shaped symbol. "OUCH! Wh-what happened to my watch?"

Arctic Bomber stepped in. "Let me try." She got out a Bowling Bomb and triggered its interior fuse by twisting its top half by 180 degrees. In less than a second, it exploded in her face instantly. Blaze Bomber did the same for his Blazing Bombs, only they took twice as long as usual to detonate. Neither one had any effect on the frenzied mutants.

"Hmm...this doesn't look good," worried Aaron. "Blaze, does your Power-up Generator still work?"

"It should be, but all I'm getting is the same skull insignia Ami's Bomberman Watch is displaying."

Bill and Lance tried firing their Contra Rifles aimed at the beasts, but nothing came out. "Regulus did say to check our stuff when we got out of the prison chamber...Alright, then we'll just have to improvise for now, and when we get to a safe distance, we'll find out what's going on."

"Our Hookshot attachments still seem to work, though," added Lance, stunning a few aliens with it as Bill followed suit.

"My Conformer doesn't look or feel like it's been tampered with," commented Yuffie.

"Same with my guitar," said Yumi. "I don't think we're at a complete loss here. Can you guys still do that 30-hit Konami Barrier incantation?"

Aaron, Ami, Bill and Lance nodded, but upon doing so, nothing happened. "I guess not," sighed the blue-clad Contra. "It's either the Phazon in our bodies or our Contra Rifles have also been tampered with."

"I'd say both; mine's also acting like it's shooting blanks. We may have to grab some of these weapons they dropped when Dr. Mandrake mutated them. I think that scoped SG5 Commando up front should bode well for me."

"Aaron's right," said Ami, picking up a grenade launcher. "It's not gonna be the same as using my cartoon bombs, but it's better than nothing. These adult Sidehoppers and Dessgeegas are no joke!"

"And I still have no idea what these saber-toothed tadpoles are supposed to be."

Arctic shrugged, snagging an AK-47. "Ugh. You expect anything less from Mandrake? C'mon, this whole place is turning into an inferno!"

Mission 6: Detonation imminent
We don't know if the Contras have made it... Penny and her grandfather, as well as Chief Doyle, are worried about their condition. Even the young scientist-in-training has a strong feeling that something bad must have happened to them, but unless the radar-jammer is demolished immediately, there's nothing we can do.
If the Contras can take out the source of all our comm problems, stop Colonel Bahamut, and return home alive...we'll all be okay.
January 7, 20XX
7:00 PM


Ami went first by letting loose a barrage of grenades from her newly-acquired Militek Mark 6 MGL, as noted by Aaron, Bill and Lance. The rate of fire wasn't great, yet the grenades themselves packed a powerful punch on the alien mutants. Bill, in possession of two P90s, advised against using the grenade launcher too often, whereas Lance shot away the aliens at close quarters with a semi-auto XM1014 shotgun.

"Any idea how long we've been in our cryogenic cells?" asked Yumi.

"About two days," answered Blaze Bomber, brandishing a sniper rifle (called the AWP) as he compared the current situation with the night of their capture. "Plus, it's gonna be January 6 in Diamond City, meaning our friends are fast asleep...not to mention completely unaware of the oncoming threat. Pit, Phosphora and their Centurion subjects are already dealing with the Space Pirate attack up in Skyworld--"

"They're ALREADY gonna destroy New Angel Land first?!" gasped Yuffie.

"When we were taken to the chamber for a word from Colonel Bahamut, I overheard some terrorists boasting loudly about how Ridley and the Space Pirate Aerotroopers would 'reshape Skyworld into an amusement park of their own'. I fear they've used their time to boost their offensive power while we were frozen solid; we need to put an end to this madness."

"That would mean Colonel Bahamut intends to test the Pirates' capabilities before the invasion on Diamond City," theorized Lance, blowing away the facehuggers and mutant tadpoles attempting to get close.

[End BGM]

--------------------

[Stage BGM: Area 4 (Super Cyborg)]

Five minutes later, the Contras and their two friends successfully outran the huge flames and reached the elevator-like chamber, giving them a moment to recuperate as it moved its way to the very top of the tower. "That was a close call, fellas!"

Lance wiped sweat from his forehead. "Boy, you said it, Arctic! By the way, Blaze, did you find out what happened to us?"

"...It's as we feared since World War III..." he analyzed the possible reason he could think of, "...they actually did it. Those butchers managed to crack the code, even behind Regulus's back. The skull-shaped icon can only mean one thing: they must have put a computer virus on my and Arctic's built-in bomb generators, which grant artificial Bombermen and women alike with the ability to materialize bombs for use against opponents, just like any native Bomber-person could. If my theory is correct, then the virus itself has the same random effect on your Bomberman Watch, Ami."

"You mean they modeled it after the infamous Skull item from the Bomberman games?" asked the pink-haired heroine.

"That seems to be the case," answered Aaron. "You pick it up during Battle mode, it'll put a curse on you by hampering either your movement or the ability to use bombs. Sometimes you could only get it off by picking up an item or passing it to someone else. Other times, you have to hang in there until it wears off."

Blaze Bomber nodded. "Then we'll call it the Skull Virus. But the worse part is it's also preventing me from producing power-ups for your Contra Rifles. Until I can isolate the problem, we're stuck with the enemy guns we've had to pick up along the way."

Yuffie had something else in mind. "Maybe Penny has a solution! We just have to destroy the radar-jammer first!"

"I can't guarantee it right away, but it's worth a try. Speaking of which, I've been thinking...well, about our little visit to the Pokemon World..."

"What about it?" wondered Bill, spotting a security camera on the walls of the glass elevator. "Wait, hold on a second..."

"Huh? Is there a Space Pirate commander watching us?" asked Yumi.

"Shhh. Nobody talk." The blue-clad Contra aimed the still-functional Hookshot attachment on his Contra Rifle at the camera, and launched it at the lens. Then he yanked the camera off like a fishing rod, and stomped it to pieces with the hardness of his combat boots. "Okay, we can talk now. I thought Colonel Bahamut's dregs were eavesdropping on us. You were saying about our visit, Blaze?"

"When we game-jumped into the Kalos region prior to the Holiday season, Arctic and I witnessed a hostage situation near the Prism Tower in Lumiose City, whereas you, Lance, Aaron and Ami stopped Sniper, Axe and Volcano from blowing up the Kalos Power Plant. The news reporter, Alexa - Viola's big sister - tipped us off about the fiendish plots."

"Oh yeah, now that you mention it..." said Aaron. "We never had a clue how they found out about the Pokemon world or why they wanted to nuke the power plant, but we chased them out."

"Maybe they were trying to discover which legendary Pokemon would make a suitable new body for Red Falcon's resurrection," theorized Ami. "Xerneas, Yveltal, Zygarde, you name it."

--------------------

(FLASHBACK - NOVEMBER 21, 20XX; THREE DAYS AFTER THE EVENTS OF GJA #2)
(BILL'S P.O.V.)

"We don't know who you are or where you're from," a man called out to us at the entrance of the power plant in the midst of the badlands, "but you couldn't have come at a better time. Three menacing robots have taken over the Kalos Power Plant, and they say they'll blow it up unless their demands are met."

"What we do know is their motives are far worse than that of a man, a woman and a talking Meowth," the other worker told us. "Those androids mean business."

"That's what I figured," as Aaron said, "the Team Rocket trio had taken over the plant a while ago, only for Ash, Serena, Clemont and Bonnie to beat them as usual...whereas in the game, it was targeted by none other than Team Flare."

Then I asked the workers, "About those three robots...are they by any chance Sniper Bomber, Axe Bomber and Volcano Bomber of the Hate Bombers?"

"I believe so. You've fought them before?"

"More than once in our lives. We'll do what we can to stop them from causing a permanent blackout to the Kalos region."

They were very glad to have us around to protect them now. "Oh, thank Arceus for your coming to save us! But be careful, there's no telling where the robotic terrorists are planting the time bomb!"

And Ami, if I recall, you took a bow in a traditional Japanese fashion and said, "You can count on the Contras - that's us - to take on the evildoers."

"Before you go any further inside, you'll need this map." The leading staff member handed over an electronic map, displaying a digitized layout of the Kalos Power Plant. "Take note of the critical spots that I'm sure they're likely to plant that crudely-made C4 of theirs. By the way, do any of you have a defuser?"

(LANCE'S P.O.V.)

I stepped right up and showed them the device itself. "I do. Our good friend and talented inventor, Blaze Bomber, gave it to us while he and Arctic Bomber went over to Lumiose City to help defuse the hostage situation. We'll see what we can do."

"Okay. The rest of us will get hold of Officer Jenny and inform her of our predicament."

So the four of us were on our own. We didn't have any power-ups on hand for our Contra Rifles, because it was impossible for Penny to teleport them from one dimension to another; the kind that isn't in a digital realm. Last I checked, she and her grandpa said they're working on it but it would take some time, so all we could do for now was to improvise. Also, I don't mean to criticize Jenny's line of work, but I guess law enforcement in the Pokemon World isn't always reliable. Sorry, I'm just assuming whatever Wario had been telling us; he probably watched tons of episodes while scarfing down on garlic. Who knows?

(AARON'S P.O.V.)

Well, look on the bright side, at least there's a competent Officer Jenny living in Diamond City in our world now...or, so we heard. But back to the situation at hand, I figured it was best that we stick together rather than split up. As you already warned us one time, Blaze, the person with the defuser needs adequate protection while they're getting the job done. We tried the room where Jessie, James and Meowth were using this conduit thing - forgive me, I don't know any type of power plant like this one, out of all the others I've seen in the SimCity games, so don't ask. But whatever they were controlling at that time, somehow brainwashed all kinds of Electric-type Pokemon, including Ash's Pikachu!

"Fellas," I called, "I think I know where the Hate Bombers are planting their C4...and there's a stash of pipe bombs everywhere in this room..."

"You couldn't be more right, Suck-tras!" taunted Axe Bomber, jumping us from the ceiling. "We're just trying a little something new for a change, but since it ain't likely those stupid workers are gonna tell us where we can find these legendary Pokemon in the region, that we could use as suitable choices for Lord Red Falcon's new body, we'll be nuking this power plant to hell's ninth circle anyway!"

(AMI'S P.O.V.)

"We've got to hold them off while Lance defuses their evil bomb!" I pulled out my own bombs - the usual ones shaped like ten-pin bowling balls - and went for a strike. Axe jumped over my Fire Bombs, but you, Aaron, were quick to jump kick him right where they're rolling to be blown up. Obviously the blasts didn't stop him, but given that fire melts steel in real life, he was slowed down for a little bit. We took a back-to-back stance to face off against Axe and Sniper, while Bill kept Volcano busy.

"Ha! Even if you do succeed, we're still gonna set off all the pipe bombs!" Sniper taunted, showing us a device on his left hand.

"They are remote-controlled," Volcano elaborated, "plus our teleporation belts will get us out of the blast radius while the four of you are incinerated alive."

It was a hard-won haul indeed; we took the hits for as much as our bodies can handle, while you finished the job, Lance. Of course, getting rid of the pipe bombs was another story...

(INTERRUPT FLASHBACK)

--------------------

"...You might say we cheated death once again," finished Ami. "Amidst the skirmish, I barely managed to snag all three of their belts away and we carefully gathered every last pipe bomb to wrap around with the belts. We didn't have much time to pick the right place where the IEDs could explode harmlessly, so we did the next best thing: the technicians helped us weld them together, and in the end, the three of us launched them far out into the sky with a perfect imitation of a Hammer Throw."

"And nobody was hurt, right?" asked a concerned Yuffie. "Sorry, I just can't bear the thought of evil guys using high explosives to hurt people in the Pokemon World."

"The Hate Bombers thought they could get away with that, but not while we're around. So once the welded pipe bombs were out of range, but at the right spot so the flying Pokemon won't get caught in the blast, Lance detonated them with the remote control he stole from Sniper Bomber. Boy, were the Hate Bombers mad when they finally woke up from all the damage we'd inflicted on them, but guess who showed up at the last second?"

--------------------

(RESUME FLASHBACK; AMI'S P.O.V.)

"FREEZE!" thundered Officer Jenny, carrying a baton in her hands. She was in no mood for games after having heard about the bomb plot we just foiled. "Who is responsible for all this?!"

All of us, including the technicians, pointed directly at the half-dead Hate Bombers. She knew exactly what to do next, and believe me: you do NOT want to make her angry, especially while she's on duty. "For threatening to kill innocent people, attempted destruction of the power plant, illegal use of explosives AND potentially endangering the lives of Pokemon and Trainer alike all around the Kalos region, you three are looking at LIFE IN PRISON!"

"Don't think you interloping Contras have won!" Sniper Bomber ranted his last words. "We'll be out of prison soon - we Hate Bombers ALWAYS come back, be it from the dead or incarceration!"

Unsurprisingly, Axe Bomber couldn't resist boasting his own...no, really. He doesn't know when to quit yapping. "Yeah! There's more than one way for us to revive Lord Red Falcon, and more than one legendary Pokemon to choose for a vessel! He'll be back again to blast you stupid Earth monkeys to bits, and we scatter your atoms ALL OVER THE UNIVERSE! HA HA HA HA HA!" Not wanting to hear anymore, Officer Jenny ordered her Pokemon partner, a Manectric, to shut them up with Discharge.

(END FLASHBACK)

--------------------

"...And that's pretty much it," said Aaron. "Judging by their involvement on Galuga Island, at least behind the scenes for all we know, I'm not surprised they broke out of prison and used whatever components they could steal in order to make another batch of teleporation belts, just to be able to game-jump out of the Pokemon World."

Yuffie laughed with her friends momentarily, "Axe Bomber really doesn't know when to shut up these days, does he?"

"Sure as hell doesn't! Well, we STILL don't know who's behind the hostage situation in Lumiose City," added Arctic Bomber, "but Blaze and I got a little creative. I never was the kind of Bomber-person to enjoy shooting things from far distances, but...I played along anyway. I just like to get close enough to make 'em nervous sometimes, that way they won't shoot me, but I'd put 'em on ice instead. Then there was this one incredibly nasty lady in the helicopter who called us out for 'stopping her in the middle of her plan'. After that...she just swore revenge on both of us and flew outta here. That's it."

"Could be a Team Flare sympathizer, I guess..." wondered Yumi. "Oh, by the way, I have a question: Didn't those red-tressed thugs and their leader, Lysandre, harness Zygarde's true power in a plan to destroy the entire Kalos region, starting with that Prism Tower in Lumiose City?"

"They did..." stated Lance. "Coincidentally, it occurred around the same time Red Falcon instigated World War III against Earth with the Five Dastardly Bombers he revived and reprogrammed to his service. Reports also indicated Ash Ketchum, Serena, Clemont, Bonnie, and all their friends - even the Kalos Gym Leaders - pitched in and defeated Team Flare by a close shave before the Kalos region's ecosystem was irreparably destroyed. Lysandre was presumably dead when Zygarde, in its Complete Forme, used the devastating Core Enforcer to end his reign of terror, saving Lumiose City and the entire Kalos region in the process. So in a nutshell, Ash and friends saved their world, whereas we made it a team effort to save our own shortly after said incident."

"Still," added Ami, "it gives me the creeps that Team Flare would even think of brainwashing Ash and his Greninja...but I am relieved to know it never happened. Anyway, I've been thinking since we got to the elevator alive...is it just me, or is Colonel Bahamut letting us get to the radar-jammer without a fight? Could he be laying another trap in case we escape the flaming wall?"

Aaron, too, felt uneasy about the rising elevator. "I don't trust it to get us to the top unscathed. Guys, I know it doesn't need to be said at this point, but we need to be on guard for any suspicious activity. That security camera on the wall may have been the icing on the cake."

"Yeah...and besides, the Space Pirate Tower's still on the verge of exploding. There's no telling if we can even reach the radar-jammer on time, destroy it, and escape to safety before the explosions catch up to us. There's gotta be way to make the elevator go faster, or we'll die!" Ami sighed worriedly. "Hurry, Regulus..."

Blaze Bomber had an idea. "I might be able to hack into the elevator chamber's systems, and see if that will make it go faster."

"But what if the Skull Virus interferes with your efforts?" questioned Arctic Bomber. "You know how much I hate fire and intense heat!"

"Then we'll just have to make the best of it, and hope we survive. Cross your fingers, everyone..." He pulled out a decryptor and pressed a series of buttons on its keypad, hoping it would reveal the code to change the elevator's speed. 10 seconds later, the numbers on the decryptor's LCD screen read "861986." And in just another second, the elevator seemed to accelerate itself, the vibration coming on throughout the heroes' bodies as it jetted its way to the top of the Space Pirate Tower, stopping just 5 seconds before impact.

However, the sudden decrease in speed caused their bodies to fly up to the ceiling, their faces smack-dabbed against it. Luckily it didn't hurt much, even after they fell back on the floor of the chamber.

[End BGM]

"Everybody okay?" asked Lance.

"...Yep, we're hanging on..." mumbled Arctic Bomber, shaking her head left and right to get her bearings straight. She went out the door first, leading to a short staircase that took her and her allies to the command center just above the elevator chamber. Upon investigation, they were certain this had to be the controls for the radar-jammer! Intent on regaining contact with their friends in Diamond City, the Contras waste no time destroying the control console for the jammer with the enemy guns, rendering it inoperable.

[Interlude BGM: Fateful Meeting (Streets of Rage 3)]

Colonel Bahamut's surprise appearance, however, directed their attention to the center of the control room. "You've done very admirably, but you're too late!"

"Speak for yourself, traitor," glared Bill. "We're shutting you down for good!"

"And that goes double for the technology you've used to summon the Space Pirates and all of Phazon!" accused Lance.

The renegade colonel could only stifle a cackle, their words being nothing more than idle threats to him like thunder without lightning. "Close, but no cigar. In fact, there never was a plan for a military satellite. You'll have to excuse my absence, since there are more important things for me to do than watch you die in the explosion, which should be any moment now." He disappeared in static, revealing himself to be a prerecorded hologram as the door shut itself tight.

[End BGM]
[Danger BGM: Space Pirates Attack (Metroid Prime 3: Corruption)]

"It was all a booby-trap! We're locked in!" Blaze Bomber tried burning his way out, but the Skull Virus prevented him from doing so.

"No crap, Sherlock!" Arctic Bomber attempted the same endeavor with her ice powers, yet still the outcome was no different. "Dang it! The Space Pirates aren't as stupid as we thought!"

Ami gulped in fear, the thought of being unable to use her spherical bombs far too unbearable. "Guys, I think we've had it."

Suddenly, an air combat vehicle came flying up to the windows, with a familiar voice on the communicators. Don't start sounding like cowards on me. I'd get down if I were you.

"Regulus!" beamed Aaron. "Thank Mihaele you made it. Get us out of here, fast!"

Everyone ducked beneath the damaged consoles, prompting Regulus to pierce through the glass with armor-piercing bullets from the combat vehicle. Anytime now!

"You don't have to tell us twice!" hollered Yuffie, jumping out to the craft first with everyone following suit. "Okay, we're in!"

--------------------

Just as the Space Pirate Tower finished detonating in a huge fireball, the craft had taken all eight heroes to safety. "Good thing it wasn't too difficult to steal the assault craft, but we're gonna have to cut the reunion short. Captain Octane's already on my tail."

"So you do know where the real base is, right?" reminded Aaron.

"The only consolation in the death trap was you destroyed the radar-jammer inside that tower. The real base is located beneath Mt. Hellraiser on the same path you took after our battle at the towering helipad."

Bill nodded. "Gotcha. And this time, there aren't any traps lying in wait for us!"

But when they arrived back at the now-inactive Mt. Hellraiser and jumped off, Octane had already caught up in her own assault craft. Needless to say, she was not happy about his true alignment. "Regulus, you...you TRAITOR! You were the only man I've ever respected in my whole life, and you go and betray me right behind my back?!"

"Regardless, I can't let you kill them."

"So you pretended to side with Colonel Bahamut all along...!"

Regulus nodded. "Simply so I could gain all the power I need to defeat the Contras. They're mine alone, but I'll be damned if Earth were to be destroyed along with them."

Octane sneered, "dam you, Regulus! I'll keelhaul you AND the Contras for this outrage!"

The blue warrior turned over to the Contras and their honorary allies. "I'll distract her, you guys take out the Colonel and his operations at the hidden underground base. But whatever you do, don't even think of dying on me. That rematch we had didn't count because of Swampster's obsessive persistence. Got it?"

"Wish us luck," replied Lance. "And godspeed."

[End BGM]

--------------------

[Briefing BGM: Calamari Hangar (Star Wars Rogue Squadron II: Rogue Leader)]

After descending through the inside of the volcano into the secret entrance once again, the Contras received an incoming call from Penny. Guys! Oh, thank goodness you're not dead after all! When we lost contact, we were afraid Colonel Bahamut might've done you in!

Regulus explained everything within the last two days, came Commander Doyle's voice. We had no clue the Red Falcon Empire installed a radar-jammer to prevent further communication, much less the transportation of any power-ups for your Contra Rifles. Still, it's a good thing you thought ahead and built yourself a handheld power-up generator, Blaze Bomber!

"Thanks, chief. But right now, six of us had been infected by the Skull Virus - my body and Arctic's, along with Aaron, Ami, Bill and Lance's gadgets. Yumi and Yuffie are the only ones who weren't exposed to it nor Phazon Corruption."

We know. Regulus relayed as much information as he could; therefore I am glad he's on our side.

Then Penny said, We've already contacted Professor Ein from planet Bomber, and he teleported in along with Cutie Bomber, Lover Bomber, Molten Bomber, G-Bomber and Wing Bomber to help us produce a cure for the Skull Virus. You might recognize Cutie from the time she helped Cheerful White by supplying the necessary tools for him and his friends to fight Evil Bomber on a distant planet. The other four are good friends with her and our Bomber-pals.

"Might wanna send us the cure fast," said Aaron. "We were duped into believing Colonel Bahamut pirated Purple Basilisk's technology in order to bring in Ridley and the Space Pirates. I sense there's something big, and we're gonna find out what it is before it's too late."

"Tell me about it," scoffed Arctic Bomber. "How badly have we been duped here?!"

They may have tricked us, but we're not licked yet. I'm sending you six power-up pods; each one contains the cure for the Skull Virus. They should look like first-aid kits. Then came the six jet-powered pods, which Aaron shot down with the SG5 Commando. He, Ami, Bill, Lance, Blaze and Arctic picked up the kits inside, removing all traces of the Skull Virus instantly.

"YAY! We can use our own holy-powered weapons again!" cheered Ami. "Domo arigato, Penny-chan! I guess I won't be needing the grenade launcher anymore." She threw it into the magma lake; Bill and Lance did the same for the P90s and XM1014.

"Aaron, let me hold on to the SG5 in case Colonel Bahamut tries his Skull Virus again," said Blaze Bomber. "Though I can't promise anything, I might still be able to provide backup with the AWP."

"And I'm not letting go of my AK-47," added Arctic Bomber. "Well, here we go again!"

In the meantime, we're preparing to defend Diamond City against the oncoming invasion as soon as the boys finish repelling the attack on New Angel Land alongside Pit and Phosphora, noted Doyle. If and when you can, weaken their numbers. Over and out!

"Now that we're out of danger," stated Yuffie, "we'll make sure Red Falcon's goons NEVER lay their hands on 9-Volt! This I swear, as a fellow guardian angel!"

[End BGM]

TO BE CONTINUED...

Posted by: WarioMan Jul 21 2017, 10:06 PM
Chapter 10: A true mastermind revealed

[Stage BGM: Opening Stage - Underground (Mega Man 8)]

Mission 7: Truth be told
Now that we know the Contras are okay, we hope they can weaken the invasion forces of Colonel Bahamut, Ridley, and the Space Pirates. As for curing the Phazon Corruption, it will take some time and effort to perfect such a formula to counteract the artificial Phazon devised by Dr. Mandrake.
Aaron, Ami, Bill, Lance, Blaze, Arctic, Yumi, Yuffie... Stop the evil substance from spreading across the Earth! Do not let it overtake your bodies!
January 7, 20XX
7:30 PM


"No kidding, right? We have to swim all the way through this underground passage, just to reach the Hate Bombers' hidden base?"

"Look on the bright side, Yumi," Ami replied, "it wasn't hard to persuade a couple of patrolling Space Pirates to lend us their gravity suits for you, Yuffie and Blaze Bomber to wear."

"Indeed," agreed Blaze Bomber, "given my element being useless underwater. How's your Contra Rifle's Aqua Mode coming along, Lance?"

"Works like a charm, Blaze! Okay, I'm going ahead with my Crash Missiles in tow. Aaron, Billy, back me up with your Homing Missiles!"

Bill nodded, "Right behind you, buddy. Alright Aaron, let's do this. Ami, cover the rear with your Ice Bombs."

"In case I lose my Homing Missiles," noted Aaron, "I got the Spread Gun in my Contra Rifle's other weapon slot."

"Yumi, Yuffie, I'm gonna need help covering the backside of our formation," instructed Ami. "Arctic, left flank with Aaron. Blaze, right flank with Bill."

Their underwater trek was short, and just what they anticipated; time was running out for Diamond City. They needed to halt the Space Pirate invasion, fast. Fortunately for the good guys, downing a rabble of Space Pirates garbed in gravity suits, in addition to the Xenomorphs, was a breeze. A salvo of torpedoes from an oncoming attack sub whizzed by, easily destroyed in one hit by each of Aaron and Bill's Homing Missiles, followed by Lance destroying said sub with the Crash Missiles to the hull. It was all thanks to careful planning that they pulled through with no injuries or further Phazon infection.

But the underwater battle was only a small prelude compared to what they were about to face on the surface...

[End BGM]

--------------------

[Stage BGM: The Unknown World (Metal Slug 3)]

"(Hey! How'd they get all the way past our underwater defenses?! Kill them all!)" Three additional Space Pirates opened fire with their Phazon-modded Quantum Assault Cannons, aided by two armored human terrorists emptying their M249s' ammo clip. The Contras, on the other hand, returned fire with their own weapons, Yuffie having casted Protect and Shell on herself and her teammates as usual to negate physical and magic-based damage alike by half. Ami grabbed hold of a Tec-9 pistol from one of the dead thugs.

After taking care of the nuisance, they stopped for a moment to listen in on Colonel Bahamut's announcement via the loudspeakers.

My loyal associates... Before we embark for an all-out attack on Diamond City as our first order of business, allow me to unveil the final stages of Operation Ragnarok: the ultimate weapons project of which we have designed for complete genocide. Simply put, it involves the utter transformation of the entire planet Earth through the usage of Phazon, from which you'll witness as the Government collapses in on itself, and all of the worthless humans and Bombermen with it. Not even Doyle and his six lapdogs, the Contras, will be able to prevent mass destruction on a global scale. What he himself thwarted long ago was but a mere prelude of the events to unfold.

Emperor Mateus, Zeromus, Count Dracula Vlad Tepes, Adolf Hitler, Emperor Hirohito, Master Bison, Sherudo Garo, Ernesto Diaz, General Giorgio Zott, Colonel Gregory Barrows...

Ami whispered, "Wait, he's also name-dropping the dictators whom the VSSE's best agents defeated over the years?"

Aaron hushed her softly. "Shhh. Listen."

They who led their respective empires in an effort to control mankind, and decimate all who oppose them, will not have died in vain. But of course, our New World Order will be resisted. Having said that, we possess Phazon weaponry as the ultimate leverage to pick up where all the other dictators from over the centuries have failed. The Contras and their friends will soon regret ever having destroyed Lord Red Falcon. Unfortunately, our security has been temporarily breached, thanks to Regulus the traitor. Therefore, I've advanced our launch schedule on behalf of Red Falcon's loyal Hate Bombers.

All flight crews, combat units and Space Pirate militia are to board the Colossus and the following assault shuttles at once, and prepare to slaughter the weak. But by all means, don't hesitate to have fun in your endeavors, as Lord Ridley has personally granted us permission to do so. Once he has done away with Skyworld's precious kingdom and its rulers, he will be leading the onslaught beside myself to ensure that our morality never falls. As for Regulus, he'll be nothing more than an example of why Lord Red Falcon, even in death, does NOT tolerate disloyalty. Operation Ragnarok has begun.

Bill muttered angrily to himself, "Not if we can help it, you hellspawn traitor."

"Bill, you yourself told Arctic Bomber time and again that letting your anger get the better of you can be very disastrous."

"Lance, I know we need to practice what we preach, but what Colonel Bahamut's doing is unforgivable! I swear, if he really does know where 9-Volt lives just so he can blow the house up firsthand...!"

Aaron talked with Ami for the next minute or two to reflect upon Bahamut's speech. "Between the two of us, I had a feeling he'd also mention the head of Shadaloo. Didn't it collapse at one point when his dim-witted henchman, Balrog, took over just as Akuma - or Gouki, as he's known in your country - knocked him dead?"

Though the dictator in question is known in Japan as "Vega", Ami simply referred to him as "M. Bison"; "Vega" the narcissistic killer from Spain with a claw; and "Balrog" the American boxer with low intelligence, all for her American friend's sake. However, just hearing Akuma's name was enough to make even the bravest warrior's hair stand on end, simply because of his dreaded "Raging Demon."

"Mm-hmm...Aside from his Psycho Power and the unhealthy obsession with brainwashing captured girls as his 'dolls', Veg--excuse me, Bison also had this uncanny ability to come back to life again and again. But then a time came in which Ryu was among the other fighters who defeated Bison for good, long before Red Falcon broke out of his own gravesite in Diamond City to instigate the Alien Wars. Oh, I just hope Pit and Phosphora are able to repel the Space Pirate invasion up in New Angel Land, because we're gonna need all the help we can get."

Arctic Bomber, listening in on the conversation, had an idea of her own. "Now that you mention Balrog, why don't we just get him to take over the Red Falcon Empire, and then watch him run it into the ground in no time flat like the money-loving idiot that he is? It'll save us the pain we've had to endure ourselves, that's all."

Befuddled by her suggestion, Aaron responded, "Have you lost your marbles, Arctic? Balrog is insubordinate, a ruffian, and I doubt he'll listen to reason."

The ex-Hate Bomber shrugged. "What makes you say that, Aaron? He doesn't even give a crap about world domination like Vega and Bison do; he just wants to be the richest boxing champion on Earth! Duh!"

"Arctic, listen to me," the hero said in a calm manner. "I understand your being stressed out; we're all feeling this way because of the Phazon Madness that Red Falcon's butchers put us through. However, given Balrog's character, it's unlikely he'll fulfill his end of the bargain just for us. Even if he did agree to help, he'd still go back on his word at the last second, beat us into submission, and then take our money anyway. Besides, real heroes don't do insubordination, nor do they tolerate it either. That goes double for us Contras."

Ami spoke up in agreement, whilst trying her best not to forget whose names were swapped overseas in the Street Fighter games. "Aaron's right, Bis--I mean, Balrog is a lot more of a loose cannon than you'd ever be. He doesn't care who or what he smashes with his fists as long as he gets paid. I doubt Chun-Li would appreciate our hiring a common criminal like him, if we run into her at all. In short, we should never trust an antagonistic pugilist to do a Contra's job without jeopardizing the safety of innocent lives, much less our own. It's in his nature, after all."

The Mistress of the Cold pouted, crossing her arms childishly. "Tch, nobody complained too much when you got me outta jail in exchange for my help against Red Falcon. Wait, I did act a little belligerent...but yeah, I helped get the job done right."

Blaze Bomber answered, "That's because unlike Balrog, you alone possessed the potential for good."

"Yuppers. And unlike him, I'm learning to control my anger... So, what do we do now?"

Bill looked ahead to analyze the layout of the enemy base and the numerous terrorists guarding its key areas. "Okay guys, here's what we'll do, but we need to move fast..." He whispered the plan to his fellow Contras so the enemies couldn't eavesdrop on them.

"...Okay," said Blaze, aiming the AWP he still had in his possession. "I'll take point by clearing the path for us first."

"Be careful," warned Aaron, "AWPs are notoriously loud. One shot from the sniper rifle, hit or miss, and we'll be given away in a heartbeat."

Taking the advice to heart, Blaze aimed his rifle carefully, recalling the times he'd honed his aiming skills in Silent Scope. "Hmm...a whole bunch of bad guys with AK-47s, dual-wielding MAC-10s and P90s, and MP7s... Guys, you might wanna stay alert. It's no doubt the Four Bomber Kings are already letting them know we're here."

"No crap, Sherlock," said Arctic. "Hey Ami, can you and your three buddies do that 30-hit barrier thingy? We're gonna need all the protection since our anti-Phazon gear's falling apart."

"With our holy gadgets back to normal, it should work fine, despite the Phazon Corruption in our bodies," answered Ami. "Still, considering the fail-safe mechanism, we're gonna have to set it aside in favor of our Final Smash attacks."

"You mean you can only pick one at a time, as in choose either the 30-hit barrier or the Final Smash, but not both at the same time?" asked Yumi.

"I'm afraid so. Our gadgets will have to recharge for half an hour when either feature expires. It's intended that way to prevent an overcharge, which could cause our gadgets to explode."

"Ouch... That's a harsh side effect. Well, do what you gotta do then!"

Aaron, Ami, Bill and Lance stood alongside each other in two pairs, activating the normal 5-hit barriers for temporary protection against mortal damage. The main four Contras were lucky the Phazon Corruption had not yet reached a critical point inside their bodies, lest they be unable to wield their holy-powered weapons anymore, let alone perform said incantation, due to the unnatural radiation.

--------------------

"Ahh, who do we have here?" wondered Lady Bomber, looking through a set of binoculars at the Contras. "Eh, I'm not surprised they still live. It's all because of that double-crossing Regulus spying on us the whole time!"

"Then we'll just have to break them some more!" hollered Hammer Bomber. "Colonel Bahamut and Great Bomber will be pleased with our endeavors!"

--------------------

Ami, fearing for the safety of 9-Volt and friends living in Diamond City, gave Yumi and Yuffie a quick briefing on the situation. "You're the only ones who weren't exposed to Phazon, so you're both gonna have to hijack one of the assault shuttles and, if you can, prevent Deathbringer and Octane from following suit. You've got to warn everyone in Diamond City about the oncoming invasion! The rest of us will storm the base and make sure the Four Bomber Kings remain preoccupied!"

"What about you, Ami?" asked Yumi. "I've never seen you fight with a pistol before!"

"Don't worry about me. Aaron, Bill, Lance and I have been through worse. Also, I'm positive the fabled Miracle Cure in the Mushroom Kingdom should help cure the Phazon Fever, but that's another story. Go now! We'll cover your escape!"

The purple-haired half of Puffy AmiYumi hugged her guitar protectively. "...I'll see you on the other side. It's just that, you're usually the kind of person to prefer fighting bad guys with cartoon bombs."

"I know, but like I said, don't worry. Aaron and I had to go through basic firearms training when we founded the Contras alongside Bill and Lance. Plus, it wasn't too hard getting the okay for Dr. Crygor and his granddaughter to modify our Contra Rifles - technically M16s, if you will - with holy power and the ability to...well, you get the picture. Besides, Aaron and I have played enough light gun games like Time Crisis to help keep our marksmanship in check. We'll be fine, just go!"

"Hey, hey, calm down. You don't have to remind me, I already know about how you guys got your Contra Rifles and Bomberman Watch... And you can count on me and my guitar to get Yuffie and myself to safety!"

"Ami's got a point," said Yuffie. "She can take care of herself. C'mon, we've gotta get inside the assault shuttle before they all take off!"

"Yuffie, behind you!" warned Lance, who neutralized a Xenomorph stalking its prey from the rear with his Crash Missiles. "You're all clear, now let's keep moving! And good luck to both of you!"

"Don't let that evil substance kill you, okay?" Yuffie ran off with Yumi following suit, whereas the six Contras kept the enemies occupied.

Often the Tec-9 handgun could be easily converted to shoot full-auto, its sheer volume of firepower being up to 50 rounds per clip in addition to low cost, therefore adding to the notorious fact that many terrorists and gangsters are seen wielding it as a sidearm. But what the Contras did not expect was the Tec-9's uncanny ability to shoot wavy, electrical shots, rather than standard-issue bullets, as Ami noticed. It could be assumed the Space Pirates had finally succeeded in pirating Samus Aran's Wave Beam, if not her other Beam weapons (i.e. the Ice Beam) or the Charge Beam functionality, with no flaws whatsoever.

As soon as the low-ranked criminals were bunched up in one spot to avoid gunfire, right next to a red exploding barrel, Blaze Bomber let it fly from his AWP, setting off an explosion that knocked them all over the floor. Then Arctic jumped in, having borrowed the SG5 Commando from Blaze, and held out two assault rifles simultaneously. "A little duel-wielding action oughta clean their clocks and force the Four Bomber Kings to come out! Rizer, you and the other Contras might wanna get down!"

"And there she goes again with her cowgirl crap," stated Lance. "But at least this time, she warned us beforehand."

In just seconds, Arctic spun around in circles whilst letting loose an entire clip from both the AK-47 and SG5 rifles. One by one, the terrorists, Space Pirates and Xenomorphs, all of which were unlucky enough to have stood close to her, got swatted away like mosquitoes trying to escape with their fill of human blood. Lady Bomber, on the other hand, used it as an opportunity to sneak in a surprise attack from the ceiling with both flaming sais at the ready. Arctic rolled out of the way in time and blocked the attack with both rifles.

[Interrupt BGM]
[Fight BGM: The Decisive Battle (Final Fantasy VI Advance)]

"You're no Ami, but I gotta admire your streak," said the female assassin. "It's too bad I have to kill you and your fellow Contras."

She sliced both the AK-47 and SG5 apart until they burned away, forcing the Mistress of the Cold to rely upon her ice powers once again.

"Hey, Billy boy," threatened Jet Bomber, brandishing a light-blue VK-12 Combat Shotgun with both hands, "here's a little ice in your eyes!"

The unusual color on the shotgun was an obvious giveaway that it could now shoot a lethal spread of ice, which would have frozen Bill and Lance on the spot had they not jumped out of the way. "How do you like my latest weapon of choice? The Space Pirates' Science Team were glad to reverse-engineer this baby for higher-ranked warriors such as myself. I call it the Refrigistorm! I'd love to rub it in Arctic's face, if she weren't already preoccupied with Lady over there."

"Take this, Mr. Poindexter!!" thundered Hammer Bomber, repeatedly slamming his electrified mace against Blaze Bomber, who used the AWP as a shield. The smashing and crashing proved too much for the sniper rifle, the spiked weapon's oppressive weight crushing it beyond repair. "Ha ha! So much for your little game of Silent Scope!"

Blaze jumped over the mace to return fire, but Hammer merely used the chain from his weapon to snag the fire-themed Contra by the legs, causing him to double up in pain due to its electricity.

"Hang tight, Blaze! We got your back!" But before Aaron and Ami could set him free, they were intercepted with a stream of fire from Bazooka Bomber's weaponized arm. Their 5-hit barriers prevented the intense heat from doing any damage to their bodies until they wore off, rendering both Aaron and Ami vulnerable again. Luckily, the fire fizzled out just as the energy shields disappeared. Bill and Lance's, on the other hand, remained active.

"Your time is over, Contras! Our master, Great Bomber, says insolent Earthlings like you can't pass! Let us assure you now that our meeting will go uninterrupted as opposed to the first!"

Meanwhile, Arctic and Lady were busily pushing hands against each other, neither one budging an inch. "You're...not...gonna...pulverize us!" She kicked Lady in between the legs, causing her to drop her fiery sais. The ice princess stole them, kicked the bad girl away, and leaped over to slice the chain off of Hammer's mace, freeing Blaze in the process. "Good thing I came here in time. Do you have any Smash Balls we can use?"

"I've already produced two of them with my Power-up Generator, but we're saving them for the battle against Colonel Bahamut. Let's try our Particle Bomb attack for now."

"Fine by me. I'm through dealing with those stupid assassins!" She and Blaze charged up their ice and fire powers, combining them for the devastating explosion which was enough to destroy Hammer Bomber for good.

Lady Bomber gasped in fright at the scene. "HUH?! Hammer Bomber...wiped out with little effort?! But I don't understand...we're supposed to be stronger than you guys!"

"You underestimate what our ninja friend can do with her White Magic," said Aaron, giving Bazooka Bomber his taste of defeat with the Spread Gun. "We were unprepared that time, but thanks to Regulus's intel, we know what to do in order to avoid racking up anymore Phazon Corruption in our bodies. You can hurt our bodies, you can smash our bones, but you can never break our spirits."

"Leave now while you still can," warned Ami. "You don't have a chance to win this time."

"NEVER!" bellowed Bazooka, ready to launch another stream of blue fire from his bazooka arm. Arctic, however, was ready for him; she blinded him with some ice shards from her hands, and hurled a Bowling Bomb like a baseball right into the barrel of his weapon. The ensuing explosion killed him instantly.

Jet Bomber was so busy trying to freeze Bill and Lance with his Refrigistorm, he did not notice his fellow Bomber Kings getting blown to pieces. "It's only a matter of time before I finally corner you and turn you into popsicles! I whooped your asses before, and I can do it again!"

"Jet! I think we need to call it off! They're more well-organized than we thought them to be!"

"Not now, Lady! Losing our pride is not an option!"

The orange girl threw her sai at him to grab his attention. "At times like this, it's better than losing our lives again! We'll leave the rest to Great Bomber!"

"Ouch! Watch where you're throwing your daggers!... Ohhh, alright! Fine! I thought we were supposed to be more powerful, not the other way around...but at least Swampster's not here to brutalize us for 'ruining his hunt' this time. Oh, and he's rude."

[End BGM]

With two Bomber Kings sent back to the junk heap, the other two were forced to retreat. "Blaze," advised Bill, "I'd recommend holding back from producing any Contra power-ups with your generator, if it has enough energy. We might need another two Smash Balls in case we have to defeat Great Bomber with our first batch."

"Duly noted," affirmed Blaze Bomber. "By this time, we should have distracted the Bomber Kings long enough for Yumi and Yuffie to make good their escape on board a ship. Now, according to Regulus's intel, Bahamut should be located straight ahead from here..."

--------------------

[Interlude BGM: Dark Clouds (Kirby: Triple Deluxe)]

Upon entering the chamber Colonel Bahamut was said to be hiding, the Contras were locked in by two sliding doors. What they saw next came as a shock, figuratively speaking.

"This must be where the--GOOD LORD! What the hell is that?!" Before Aaron could warn his fellow Contras, they were paralyzed momentarily by a bolt of dark lightning, emanating from a caped robot's hands, the body shrouded in purple. Aaron and Ami recognized it as Great Bomber, leader of the Bomber Kings, only now he had been enhanced with psychic powers. His dark lightning also destroyed Bill and Lance's 5-hit barriers instantly, giving the assumption that it doubled as a "shield killer."

"Soon to be the fate you will share, not one shall escape my glare!" he spoke in rhymes. "Look you now and behold, the unfortunate end about to unfold!"

To their surprise, Dr. Mandrake was not standing with Colonel Bahamut, but rather hanging upside-down beneath his floating platform by the rope like a helpless fish on a hook. "Aaaaaaahhh!!! Colonel, please stop!"

His supreme commander grinned evilly. "Why? You should see the damage that your research has done!"

The elderly German scientist whimpered for dear life. "B-but we had a partnership! You and I joined forces so we could take back what was stolen from us by that violent, antagonistic government...which we already did! We had been planning this for years since the failed coup d'etat...but we can still demolish them altogether with Lord Red Falcon and his Hate Bombers to guide us... The Five Dastardly Bombers won't have died in vain!"

"You misunderstand, Mandrake. Scientists like yourself are so easily manipulated by their own desires for fame and fortune. And like any scientist that has served their purpose for their superior, your services are no longer needed. I now possess enough alien materials necessary to recreate Lord Red Falcon's reign of terror, even if it doesn't bring him back right away."

Dr. Mandrake gasped in fear. "W-wait, d-don't kill me! I can still make Regulus pay for this betrayal with his life!"

"I've already arranged for that too. But rest assured, it's not that you failed me or anything. In fact, you're still useful for one other purpose. Great Bomber, if you may?"

Great Bomber raised his hands nice and slow, much to the discomfort of the scientist. "With pleasure, master, for better or worse. The doctor has outlived his usefulness, the medicine I prescribe to his very being naught but a deadly curse!" He zapped the double-crossed doctor, mutating him into a spider.

"DANG!" cried the heroes in unison.

Dr. Mandrake's screams became distorted as the mutation had finished corrupting his body. "N...N...NNNOOOOOOOOOO!!!"

"Seriously?!" shouted Ami. "This is insane!... No, YOU'RE insane, Colonel Bahamut!"

Colonel Bahamut had just cut the rope beneath his platform with a combat knife, releasing the mutant spider from its bonds onto the floor with a slump. "My apologies for the hasty exit, but I have a Space Pirate invasion army to assemble. Lord Ridley can't be kept waiting when he's finished destroying Skyworld, you know." He left the chamber through the open door on his end, prior to it slamming shut once more.

"Dammit, you freakin' coward!" cursed Arctic. "Fight us already, will ya?!"

[End BGM]
[Alert BGM: Black Power (Mega Man Battle Network 5: Double Team DS)]

Ami glanced at Dr. Mandrake's mutated body, noting his ability to climb up to the ceiling. "As much as I hate doing this to a tortured soul after what the evil colonel did, he has inflicted pain with his dark experiments in the past. I must free him from his torment with my bombs of truth and justice."

"I need not preach my rhymes to worthless cattle like you. My name is Great Bomber, and I am known simply as perfection. You and your friends would be wise to learn the meaning of torment, for it will be the last time you interfere with our masters' plans. Their orders are absolute!"

Arctic Bomber pointed her dual icy blades at him and growled. "You think you're perfect and invincible because of that Phazon crap you got?! It's go time!"

"Fellow Contras," instructed Blaze Bomber, "remember to control your anger so the Corruption's influence doesn't grab our very being!"

"Do not prolong your inevitable fates," taunted Great Bomber. "If you possess any form of intelligence, you will flee now while you still can, or die trying."

Bill replied mockingly, "I'd say the only mandatory upgrade they gave you was an inflated ego."

"You refuse to acknowledge my power and flee, yet you dare provoke me with petty insults? Very well. Then I shall make your death wish come true without delay!"

[End BGM]
[Fight BGM: Boss (Silent Scope 2: Dark Silhouette)]

Great Bomber opened up with Psychic, sending the Contras hurtling back and forth against the walls with a strong telekinetic force, followed by the nasty Dark Pulse, a horrible aura imbued with dark thoughts. This caused Ami to flinch, given her fear of spooky things, but it didn't stop her from returning fire with the Tec-9's Wave Beam mode. The mutated Mandrake, on the other hand, shot a series of energy bursts at the heroes for added damage, plus he materialized a web-like pattern to travel through. Then he grabbed the Tec-9 and threw it away, assuming Ami would be rendered helpless. However, it only encouraged her to pelt him with her Fire Bombs.

"Impressive," commented Great Bomber, "but let us see if you can handle this!"

He cast Protect and Shell on himself to guard against physical and magic attacks, reducing the damage dealt to him by half. Then he followed up with a volley of Shadow Balls, each thrown at the Contras. Some were hit, but Bill and Lance swatted a few back as though they were hitting a homerun. The deflected Shadow Balls didn't hit Great Bomber, but they stunned Dr. Mandrake momentarily.

"What chance have you to defeat me? Your pathetic Contra Rifles have already lost the power-ups you acquired beforehand!"

"We're not licked yet," answered Lance, grabbing a Smash Ball from Blaze Bomber. He busted it open to activate his Final Smash, the Homing Missiles EX. "I'll take out the spider mutant. Aaron, use your Final Smash to pierce through Great Bomber's defenses. It should be enough to finish him off."

"Hopefully I can still stand after this..." Aaron busted his own Smash Ball open, its energy going into his Contra Rifle for the mega laser attack. "Ami, do you have any Potions? I'm gonna need some in case I lose my energy to keep fighting."

"Yuffie gave three of them to me before she left. It's not much, but it should help you. Go for it!"

"Chaaarge Shot!" A blue ball of light grew bigger on the barrel of the Contra Rifle. "NOW! HEE-YAAAH!!"

Dr. Mandrake could only block so many super-powered Homing Missiles with a barrier of his own, before he succumbed to his wounds. As for Great Bomber, he pulled all the stops to deflect the Charge Shot from Aaron's Contra Rifle. Unfortunately for him, even his Reflect spell had its limits on how many times it could redirect a special attack back at its user.

[End BGM]

Lance's Final Smash expired after its 20-second usage, just as Mandrake's spider form burst into flames upon death and Great Bomber fell to his knees. "No! I cannot be defeated by such imperfection!" His body shorted out, glowing bright white just before it exploded, leaving no piece of molten metal save for a few stray lightning bolts. Aaron, having used the Charge Shot, collapsed on his knee, whereas Ami administered all the Potions to heal him.

"Th-thanks, Ami."

"You're welcome, Aaron. Though I kinda feel sorry for what we had to do..."

"I know... It had to be done, especially after everything Mandrake put us through. And all that's left for us, is to defeat Colonel Bahamut."

"His Phazon drug ring will surely collapse. C'mon."

--------------------

Blaze Bomber, despite the damage inflicted upon his body, managed to produce two more Smash Balls. He strongly advised saving one for the fight against Bahamut, for his Power-up Generator shut itself off in order to recharge. More Space Pirates and Xenomorphs charged by, giving Bill the opportunity to show them his Final Smash, the Spread Gun EX. He used its 20 seconds to clear the way for himself and his fellow Contras.

No sooner did it run out than they reached Bahamut's lair at long last.

--------------------

[Interlude BGM: Moonlit Army (Contra: Hard Corps)]

"I didn't think you'd make it," the colonel began, "though I must admit I am shocked you came this far. You even had the guts to survive the fake headquarters, but here's the spoiler..."

"That ordeal was meant to delay us all along, so we wouldn't suspect your real intentions until it was too late."

"That's right, Aaron. We wanted you to believe we were using Purple Basilisk's technology to summon all those Space Pirates and Phazon from the Metroid games. Hah! That simpering fool couldn't dictate his way out of a paper bag if it bit his nose, which must be why he and Vaati failed to conquer Game Central Station. Yes...I heard everything."

Ami balled up her fists in fury. "As much as I hate to admit it to everyone, at least he has his own standards like Bowser does! Better yet, we'd rather put up with either one than a...a...traitorous scumbag like you!"

Colonel Bahamut laughed at her response. "You mean that overfed dragon-like turtle king, who idiotically forgets to lock the front door to his pathetic excuse for a castle every single day? But enough about that."

Bill stepped in. "I've said this before to Apex, but I'll say it again here: you're a disgrace to your planet! Where the hell's your patriotism?!"

"Apex? Oh, that old cohort of mine whom you obliterated the other day. But I'm not mad because you killed him; his usefulness - much like Mandrake's - was no longer needed anyway. And to answer your question, what good is patriotism if you're not willing to take what's yours by sheer force? The Government selfishly locked away the alien cell we now use to clone Red Falcon's personal army, and after all I've done for them during the Alien Wars! They robbed me of my dream, and they, along with the rest of the world, are going to burn for it...And I do mean BURN!"

Aaron kept his Contra Rifle pointed directly at Bahamut's face. "You bastards are nothing but a bunch of mad dogs now, aren't you?"

Sniper Bomber walked up to the Contras next. "Sticks and stones, Aaron. Once we overwhelm your Diamond City and Skyworld, we'll turn our focus towards killing Purple Basilisk and his so-called dynasty. He'll learn his place for severing ties with the Red Falcon Empire, just the same as you soon enough, Arctic." He glared hatefully at the self-proclaimed ice princess. "Those who dare to stray from Lord Red Falcon will perish by our hand! Never again will we address Purple Basilisk's successful contributions in the Red Falcon Empire, as he is now a pathetic excuse for a dictator! Anyone who doesn't lack any form of shame or remorse in their desires for war, cruelty and massacring helpless cattle, is a disgrace to villainy everywhere, not to mention a disloyal traitor to Lord Red Falcon!"

"Better a petty dictator for him and Bowser, than a cold-blooded killer like you hellish monsters!"

"That will soon change, for Purple Basilisk will be the next in line, following Regulus, to learn why we never tolerate disloyalty, be it the easy way or the hard way. We were both surprised and fortunate, that Lord Red Falcon's other second-in-command arrived from the far reaches of space with the Space Pirates and the recreated Phazon."

Axe Bomber banged his transformable hands against each other. "Black Viper, that's who! And he ain't too happy about you Earth monkeys ending his buddy's reign of terror!"

"So everything we went through on Galuga Island...it was meant to throw us off course?" questioned Arctic.

"Everything, I'm afraid," Volcano Bomber replied coldly. "But there is one way to save yourselves..."

"Can't wait to hear."

"I'd cool it with the sarcasm if I were you," warned Bahamut. "What Volcano Bomber means to say is, we've also been looking for soldiers as strong and brave as yourselves for a long time. I'm sure Ridley won't mind the delay since I have an invasion to lead, but think of it this way: we are so much alike, you and I. Before I begin offering you a deal, I guess I should thank you, Bill Rizer and Lance Bean, for defeating Red Falcon five years ago during the Alien Wars...making it possible for me to get my hands on the alien DNA he left behind with little to no stragglers to deal with."

Ami shuddered in fear momentarily. "Seriously, and all behind our backs?"

"Yes. Quite ironic, wouldn't you say, Ami? But then of course, Commander Doyle and his fellow bootlickers just had to barge in and try to stop my rebellion against the Government. Which brings me to my next point...heh heh heh...That's right, I'm talking about you, Bill and Lance. Don't even think I've forgotten that you were there with him and your former CO, the late General Rupert. The old man tried to avenge his death on your behalf by destroying me on that very day, but he failed! He'll soon fail again, only this time as your boss. Which is why I'm making a deal right now..." The colonel paused his speech to grin evilly.

"So if I were you, I wouldn't think of passing it up. You see, we should be running the world like gods instead of against each other, because the reason is people are sick to death of what modern civilization has become. Without an iron fist to keep them in control, they step on us like roaches. That's why I'm here on behalf of Red Falcon, Black Viper and the Hate Bombers. The people need me to give birth to a new world order, but it can't be done unless you consider my offer. Join with me! The Earth and its weak, lowly pawns await those like us to lead them!"

Ami could not even begin to imagine such an outcome without feeling uneasy, as though the colonel were staring deep into her soul. "Don't tell me, let me guess: you're gonna threaten to blow up 9-Volt's house in Diamond City and slaughter his family in cold blood, unless we comply with your sick and twisted request, is that it?!"

The colonel made a fake gasp, as if to mock the pink-haired Contra. "Moi, nuke an innocent child's home because you're afraid of what might happen if you say no to a simple question? My goodness, I'm shocked!"

"So you do know where he lives after all," surmised Bill. "You were spying on us the whole time during the Alien Wars!"

Bahamut snickered once more. "Ever so perceptive, Rizer. How droll...but for a mere pair of grunts like yourselves, I'll compliment you on your wisdom. Therefore, you must also know what to say to avoid getting killed on the spot. You were lucky to be alive when you and Doyle refused the same offer that time. Don't deny your fate. Join me."

"We've heard that talk before, so the answer is hell no!"

"To quote a talking ninja turtle," added Arctic, "does the phrase 'go suck a lemon' hold any meaning for you?"

"Nice one, Arc!" Ami complimented with a giggle, though at that point, the colonel finally dropped his act and lost his cool.

"You stubborn buffoons! Prepare to die!" He pressed a button on a nearby console, bringing down a metallic crane with a steel-wrought claw to attach to his right arm. "Do you insolent fools realize who you're dealing with? I am Colonel Bahamut! And soon, I'll crush all of you under my heel!"

Lance shot back, "You first, colonel!"

"I'd love to stick around and make heads roll," announced Axe Bomber, "but Lord Black Viper needs me, Sniper and Volcano to organize the Space Pirate invasion! Now get ready to kiss Diamond City and its entire herd of sheep goodbye! And Skyworld! Planet Bomber, too! Hell, even Game Central Station and Disneyland!"

"Don't you dare touch those worlds with your evil Phazon!"

"Oh yeah?! Try me, punks! We're totally invincible with its power coursing through our bodies, and because of that, we won't have to rely on Super Titanium for absolute protection anymore!... Hey, weren't there eight of you before?"

Blaze stood silent in response, then said, "Where Yumi and Yuffie are right now is none of your business. We're the ones you want."

"We'll teach you 'business'..." Sniper Bomber turned over to a towering Elite Pirate. "See that they're entertained to the point where it's no use leaving here alive."

"Typical buncha cowards," Lance stated the obvious, "siccing their lackeys on us while running away to go kill innocent people."

[End BGM]
[Boss BGM: M. Bison's Theme (Street Fighter Alpha: Warriors' Dreams)]

The Elite Pirate, having broken out of his giant Cryosleep Tank with hard punches, backed up the Colonel by pounding the ground with his Wave Quake Generator. Although the Contras were quick to jump over the shockwave, Bahamut saw his chance and grinned, jumping upward to smack them back to the floor with his claw. Then it began spinning around like a drill, prompting its user to follow up with a super dash attack, leaving the human Contras injured with a few drops of blood spilling out and the two cyborgs with external damage to their bodies. They got up and returned fire, only for the Elite Pirate to absorb them with an energy siphon system attached to his left hand, and counterattack with his Plasma Artillery Cannon, inflicting heavy damage.

Thinking back to Samus's mission on planet Tallon IV, Aaron recalled how the Elite Pirates were assembled for combat. Due to their short lifespan, they lived in Cryosleep Tanks until the situation called for them to awaken. They were part of Project Helix, a program where Space Pirate embryos were infused with Phazon. Initial results were horrific, though Aaron would rather not delve any further into detail out of disgust. Instead, he remembered the intensity Samus had to endure in the Phazon Mines in order to wipe out the Elite Pirates, in addition to the towering Omega Pirate (initially known as Elite Pirate Upsilon). But how were Black Viper and the Hate Bombers able to recreate such a giant-sized monstrosity, if not a whole army of them, when the Elite Pirates were already long gone after the Tallon IV campaign?

Aaron, Ami, Bill and Lance would soon find out their answer...that is, if Colonel Bahamut and the Elite Pirate don't kill them first.

"Ami, use your Holy Bomb on the Elite Pirate," he instructed. "He, along with his Plasma Artillery Cannon, can't defend against concussive attacks. Its blast should ignore the effects of his energy siphoner!"

"Won't be a problem..." Ami grunted, having been punched backwards by Bahamut. "Ready...here I go! Wish me well, Aaron!"

Breaking open the last Smash Ball in reserve, she charged up her energy to materialize a bright-white sphere with a golden aura atop. "HOLY BOMB!!" With a strong toss, she destroyed the Elite Pirate and his Plasma Artillery Cannon instantly, leaving only the evil Colonel to contend with.

"Alright, so you've taken out my backup. No matter, he's already corrupted your bodies even further with his Phazon-enhanced attacks, which brings to me another trick up my sleeve..." Bahamut transformed his gauntlet into a cannon, firing an EMP beam consisting of skull-like laser rings. It was just as the Contras feared: he, too, could utilize the Skull EMP! "Too bad you won't be able to use your holy gadgets again! Still, I must commend your ability to remove its negative effects..."

Even when they were afflicted again, the Contras continued pushing themselves forward and grabbed onto his claw, squeezing it with all their might until it was crushed. However, it was the last thing they did before collapsing onto the floor.

[End BGM]
[Defeat BGM: Encounter with Vile (Mega Man Maverick Hunter X)]

But the traitor was not upset he lost his gauntlet and the Elite Pirate in battle. "Now that's something I don't see everyday. I lose, but you do not win?"

"Must...fight...Pha...zon...Corruption!" The weakened Arctic Bomber struggled forth to land another blow, but to no avail.

"I grow tired of these pointless games. Begone with you, traitor!" He kicked her away, rendering both her and Blaze Bomber unconscious upon impact.

Then he glanced at the main four Contras, giving one last speech to decide their fates. "As for the rest of you, I'll leave it up to Lord Black Viper and the Hate Bombers to finish you off permanently. But before I do so, I'll admit one last time that you were right all along...half-right, that is. Not only did I spy on you during your visit to 9-Volt's house, I also had plans to take the child under my wing as an apprentice. I needed someone as deserving of praise much like myself, to continue my operations for years to come should the necessity arise. It is shameful that us humans aren't capable of immortality...but I've changed my mind. Instead, I'll personally see to it that the boy and his friends suffer the same fate as you. Oh, and speaking of fate..."

He typed in a passcode on a converted Polybius cabinet's keyboard, opening up a portal on the screen which sucked Aaron, Ami, Bill and Lance inside. "Goodbye, my little pawns!"

[End BGM]

--------------------

[Overworld BGM: Something Ghostly (Gradius II (NES))]

Inside Polybius, a space-like dimension filled to the brim with glitches and not a sign of a floor...yet the Contras could still walk as though on ground. But only a few seconds in and already did they see the Hate Bombers and a giant black ant-like alien monster with a Xenomorph's head. Sniper Bomber began, "At last, we have you right where we want you! We were waiting inside Polybius all along for this moment!"

"Th-the unfinished mess itself..." muttered Aaron.

"And the last place you'll see before you die. But first things first...Axe! Volcano! We know what must be done." The Hate Bombers dragged the original four Contras closer to Black Viper and a battle-damaged Regulus.

Aaron gasped in shock. "Regulus!"

"Uhhh..." Regulus groaned weakly. "I was hoping we'd meet up again and defeat Colonel Bahamut after I dealt with Captain Octane...but then he came out of nowhere and struck me down...brought me to this hellhole..."

"Don't tell me, let me guess: Black Viper."

The extraterrestrial creature answered for them. "Exactly. He may have done well to hide the fact that he'd been working with you all along, but this is where his career and life as a warrior come to an end right before your very eyes. Behold! The traitorous Regulus's final breath, and in Polybius of all places to be imprisoned!"

"Aaron...Ami...Bill...Lance...I'm sorry. I couldn't keep my promise I made to you... This is my last request: bring Black Viper down for me!"

[End BGM]
[Danger BGM: Destruction Order (Transformers: Armada)]

Axe Bomber coldly ignored the damaged android's last words. "Blah blah blah, quit yer yapping, you masked moron!" He chopped Regulus apart in a cross slash, killing him in an explosion!

"You sons of bitches!" cried Lance. "You killed Regulus!"

Sniper Bomber slapped him across the face with the side of his gun arm. "Despite what you think, it serves him right for double-crossing us. Sooner or later, you'll be joining him in hell's ninth circle!"

"You first, alien bastards...!"

Black Viper described his plan to the weakened heroes. "Either we kill you, or Polybius's atmosphere will. Either way, there's nothing you four can do to prevent our reign from spreading across the Earth. The unholy power of Phazon can never be diminished!...I see you had also run into an Elite Pirate, one of which we recreated with the combination of the alien cell, a cloned Space Pirate embryo, and Phazon just for you to see before we kill you personally. Unfortunately for you and your friends, a squad of Elite Pirates are already on board the Colossus with Colonel Bahamut to command them, soon to reach your precious Diamond City. You have no choice. Give in to Phazon, that you may die peacefully. Or you can stick with the slow and painful way, if you think you can still take us on."

"Never..." grunted Bill, "not as long as we have the will...to fight it...gotta...fight it..."

"Awww, look at the poor macho man and his buddies," taunted Axe. "'Gotta fight it! Gotta fight it!'"

"The instant we have your number, infidelic insects," added Sniper, "is the time your number's up!"

Ami turned over to her best friends. "Aaron...Bill...Lance...I don't think we can fight anymore...we've gotta find a way out...!"

"Escape is useless! You either fight or die a breed of weaklings! On second thought, take a look at yourselves!" The Contras did as instructed, all the while feeling the shocking pain on their bodies. "Don't you feel the power? The ever-increasing Corruption you carry in your hearts is slowly but surely changing you into brain-dead Phazon addicts! You're no longer fit to wield both your Contra Rifles and your Bomberman Watch!"

"Once you hit Terminal Corruption," Volcano Bomber summarized, "you will be the first humans in line to be reanimated from the dead as Phazon-craving zombies."

"Usually, we'd look forward to letting you fight a losing battle," said Black Viper, "but clearly Bahamut already did us the favor. Then again, had it not been for the mixture of Phazon Corruption and Polybius's already negative atmosphere, you might have been such worthy foes. So in lieu of that... Sniper, Axe, Volcano, you may proceed when ready."

Axe Bomber transformed his axe blades back into claws, balling each one up into fists. "Alright! We get to kick them when they're down one last time before they die!"

"Now, how did Swampster do it the way he described to me earlier?...Ohhh, yes!" Sniper transformed his gun arm into the Anti-Contra Rifle. "My brand-new Lightning Gun is sure to kill you, but that would be too quick and painless. Instead, I'll use your own technology against you."

"You didn't think we couldn't figure out a way to crack the code on your Contra weaponry, didja? Oh well, it's not like you're gonna give a dam about it when you're dead." All three of them proceeded to mercilessly beat up Aaron, Ami, Bill and Lance's already injured bodies by kicking them around and then stomping savagely on their heads, followed by Sniper switching between the stolen weaponry of his own volition, without the need of a power-up pod at all! As they continued doing so with no shame or remorse, Volcano Bomber began casting Explosion in an effort to annihilate them.

"Now you know how Lord Red Falcon's finest warriors feel whenever you come in with your precious Spread Gun or any other weapon you get your hands on," said Sniper Bomber. "Sadly, not one of you will live to counter the technology of which we pilfered. Once we kill you in cold blood, your friends will be next in line to die a most painful and gruesome death...starting with 9-Volt, Phoebe, Cheerful White and Cute Pink! Your passing the torch unto them for years to come will have been in vain!"

"So don't be a buncha sore losers, cuz we're gonna blow up 9-Volt's house as a first anyway! I'm sure the Colonel already told you before he sent you here, but hey, we can't let the kid and his buddies live to carry on your efforts now, can we?"

Volcano Bomber had almost finished the incantation for his Explosion spell. "May the four of you suffer eternally in all the nine circles of hell! Even the frozen winds of its ninth circle can never defeat the spell from which I am about to cast on thee!"

But at the last minute, Blaze Bomber warped in to absorb the attack, risking himself the exposure to Phazon Corruption in addition to the serious damage on his body. Miraculously, he's still alive. "Not tonight! Let's get outta here, Contras!" He warped himself and his companions out of Polybius.

[End BGM]

"Hey, come back here! Dammit! I hate it when they escape with their lives!" Axe then heard Sniper Bomber cackle maniacally. "Huh? You're not pissed that they ran away?"

"Oh, they can run, alright...but they can never again run on home."

Black Viper announced, "Blaze Bomber's last-minute rescue is of no concern to me. The Contras have already sealed their own fate, as will their measly pets in Diamond City. Come, Hate Bombers, the time for genocide is upon us! Once Diamond City is reduced to charred cinders, it will serve as an altar of Red Falcon's resurrection, making us whole again!"

The Hate Bombers raised their left arms in unison. "Death to planets Earth and Bomber, and Skyworld!!"

"Still, I'm intrigued to see what this Pokemon World I've heard so much about, has to offer. That is, once we transform it into a hate nest of our own. Its precious Kalos region will be my personal throne; Ridley can have Skyworld for his very own Space Pirate amusement park; and you'll have planet Bomber to yourselves. Why rule only one world, when we can have four? Or perhaps five, if we count Disneyland and its neighboring kingdoms, notably Enchancia?"

Sniper Bomber paused momentarily. "Enchancia, huh? That opportunity just gets better and better..."

--------------------

[Briefing BGM: Castle Lord's Room (Castlevania Legends)]

"While you guys were down and out," Blaze explained, having teleported himself and his human allies back to Bahamut's lair, "I mustered enough energy to hack into the mainframe and gain access to the teleporter. But I could only two things before the Skull EMP's effects locked me out, so I used it to bring in our Contra Cruiser and teleport you out of danger. C'mon, let's get you back to Diamond City...and I only hope Yumi and Yuffie made it home in time..."

He used his remaining strength to get the allies and himself into the car and set it to autopilot before passing out from the Phazon Corruption. It then blasted its way out of the underground base with its Super Crash Missiles, which unlike the regular ones could travel as far as possible until they hit something, in addition to double the damage and twice the blast radius.

[End BGM]

--------------------

[Alert BGM: Decision (Gunstar Heroes)]

Much later, it was soon to be 2:00 AM in Diamond City with the Contras arriving at Crygor Labs. Though Blaze was also in need of medical attention, he believed himself capable of bringing in Aaron, Ami, Bill, Lance and Arctic with the help of the Colonial Marines in hazmat suits.

King Billy Bling, Arctic's former rival, was the first to witness the terrible outcome when they came in. "Arctic Bomber! Oh no... What have those alien bastards done to you and your fellow Contras?"

"Blaze, I'm glad you could make it home alive," said Penny. "But I think you're gonna need help getting rid of the Phazon Corruption in your body as well as Aaron, Ami, Bill, Lance and Arctic's. In the meantime. Professor Ein and Cutie Bomber are helping us out in any way they can. Here, let's get rid of the Skull Virus first..." She produced six first-aid kit-shaped power-ups on her and Dr. Crygor's computer, and distributed it to the Contras' holy weapons and Arctic and Blaze's bodies, removing the negative effects instantly.

"Unfortunately, the Full Heal isn't programmed to get rid of Phazon, but we're working around the clock on it with the help of the Colonial Marines' EMT division. Yumi, I'll need your help slowing down the Corruption for as long as possible. And Yuffie, I'm counting on you to get 9-Volt, Phoebe, White and Pink. Pick Mona up first along the way; she needs to know about this!"

"I freakin' HATE Space Pirates!" shouted Wario, paying no attention to Penny's elaboration. "They always try to corrupt whatever they touch!"

"Save your anger for those that deserve it," interrupted King Billy, "so stay put for now. Penny and her grandpa gave me permission to teleport Ralph, Vanellope, Felix and Calhoun into the real world to help keep us safe here until your girlfriend and the four kids arrive safely. I trust Yuffie with my life."

Wario sighed in defeat. "...Alright. But once the gang's all here, we're wiping the floor with that evil coward Colonel Bahamut and his merry men!"

--------------------

Meanwhile, Yuffie got inside the Contra Cruiser and set it to autopilot. She began to think back to when she and Yumi fought Major Deathbringer and Captain Octane at the docking bay, home to countless Space Pirate Destroyer-class attack ships, headed by the dreaded (and rebuilt) Colossus. While they couldn't prevent the criminals from following suit, they still managed to hijack two small tadpole-shaped craft, the Zebesian Pirate Ships, utilizing its cloaking feature to avoid detection. In short, they were lucky to be alive, much less unscathed after all this was done!

After landing in front of Mona's house, Yuffie set aside her train of thought and knocked on the door. The redhead opened up and greeted the teen ninja with a hug. "Yuffie, you're back! Penny told me you were on your way to pick me up."

"Let's save the woman-to-woman talk for some other time," replied the ninja girl, "we've gotta get to 9-Volt's house right away! I promised myself to never let the Space Pirates or any of Red Falcon's butchers touch him as long as I'm around!"

--------------------

Another ride aboard the Contra Cruiser they went via autopilot; this time it headed back to Crygor Labs the moment it brought them to 9-Volt's house. Yuffie wasted no time banging on the front door, waking up its occupants inside.

Thinking there was a burglar coming to rob the house blind, 5-Volt signaled for her son and his three best friends to stand back, ready to summon an Eidolon should the supposed burglar be heavily armed and in cahoots with the remnants of Red Falcon's butchers. But when she looked out the window and saw someone familiar, a close friend rather than a crook, she stood her ground and opened the front door.

"Oh, thank goodness you guys are all okay! Is 9-Volt safe?" Yuffie took a few deep breaths to calm herself. "Those crummy Space Pirates better not have done anything bad to him and his best friends while we were away!"

"Space Pirates?" wondered 5-Volt.

"No time to explain! We've gotta get over to Crygor Labs at once!"

"What's going--" Before 9-Volt could get a few more words out of his mouth, the ninja teen hugged him tightly.

"9-Volt, you're okay! Did they come all the way here to hurt you and your pals just to make us bow down to their power? Any cuts? Bruises?" She frantically checked him for any injuries, and upon finding out he wasn't hurt at all, she held him closer in a protective hug, dotting his cheeks with her sloppy kisses. "It's gonna be okay...Yuffie's here to protect you..."

The girl faced Mona and 5-Volt, still holding 9-Volt closer to herself. "Let's go, fellas! We'll explain on the way."

"Yuffie went to get me first before we came over to your house," explained Mona, riding with the ninja girl and the four kids, and 9-Volt's mom in her car. "Sorry we didn't call first; there just wasn't time to do so because she said something about the Space Pirates coming with the Red Falcon Empire's remnants. We need to prepare to defend Diamond City at all costs until Pit and Phosphora can get here, as they're already dealing with the same threat up in Skyworld."

A few minutes later, they arrived at Crygor Labs and ran all the way inside to see even more shocking news: Aaron, Ami, Bill and Lance were injured in battle! Blaze Bomber, however, was miraculously not in critical condition, though from the looks of it, Arctic Bomber was quarantined in another room with King Billy sitting outside.

"I swear, if I ever get my hands on those Space Pirate bastards that poisoned poor Arctic..." mumbled the Bomber-girl's former rival.

"What happened to Aaron, Ami, Bill and Lance?" asked Mona.

"Somebody sucker-punched them when they were down..." answered Ami's best friend Yumi.

[End BGM]
[Surprise BGM: VS Screen -Rival- (Street Fighter IV)]

*THE EVENTS OF GJA #3 AND #4 HAVE NOW CONVERGED AT THIS POINT. IT'S ALL UP TO 9-VOLT, PHOEBE AND THEIR FRIENDS TO REPEL THE INVASION!*
TO BE CONTINUED...

[End BGM]

Posted by: WarioMan Aug 25 2017, 04:41 AM
Chapter 11: Late-night bad news

[Alert BGM: Room of Rites (The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons/Oracle of Ages)]

EMERGENCY ORDER FOR ALL PRESENT CITIZENS: EVACUATE DIAMOND CITY IMMEDIATELY!

...In our top story for tonight, Diamond City is on the verge of being invaded by Space Pirates, Xenomorphs, armored robots... All the while the Contras are presently in need of medical attention! Can the Colonial Marines turn back the attack? Will New Angel Land's benevolent rulers, Pit and Phosphora, arrive in time from Skyworld to help us out? Only time will tell, as residential civilians and merchants alike are already being evacuated under orders from the Diamond Police, notably Officer Jenny. This is Ken, reporting live for DNN - Diamond News Network.

Just as the humanoid dog concluded his report, the news broadcast was hijacked with a threatening message from none other than Colonel Bahamut!

Citizens of Diamond City...your six heroes are finished! Now it's just you and me, and a few of our...close friends...if you catch my drift. No matter where you run off, we will track you down and obliterate you for your insolence. By this time, Ridley will have already overtaken Skyworld and remade it into the Space Pirate Amusement Park, with the natives as slave labor and entertainment. With Lord Red Falcon's second-in-command, Black Viper, at our side, the power of Phazon will soon spread all over your city before you know it.

For our new order to live on, and Red Falcon to walk upon the planet once more, man and Bomber-kind must die... You must die. Now, I must go, as I have an important call to make in private...


Wario shot up from his seat and turned off the TV at Crygor Labs, not wanting to hear anymore. "Why, that arrogant, dirty old creepo! He actually thinks he can outsmart the great WarioWare AND break MY city into little bitty pieces at the same time! Well, he's got another thing comin' for putting the hurt on the Contras in the first place!"

[End BGM]

"That's not the only problem..." the battle-damaged Blaze Bomber reported. "We're getting several readings of attack ships approaching from the coastline..."

"Save your strength, Blaze." Penny took him over to the infirmary with Dr. Crygor and Mike's help. "Grandpa and I will keep an eye on our monitor."

[Sadness BGM: Cry in Sorrow (Final Fantasy IV)]

9-Volt and Phoebe walked towards Aaron, Ami, Bill and Lance, with White and Pink standing three feet behind them. "Please tell me you guys will live..." worried 9-Volt.

"9-Volt...Phoebe..." groaned a weakened Ami, "we've...always told you...from time to time...to be more careful..."

Aaron added, "...Whether it's going about your daily lives...or training under Pit and Phosphora's guidance... But now look at us..."

"Is there anything we can do to heal you?" asked Phoebe. "Maybe the Miracle Cure in the Mushroom Kingdom can--"

"There's...no time for that..." interrupted Bill. "Here...take our Contra Rifles...and Ami's Bomberman Watch... Use them on the Hate Bombers...and Black Viper..."

"EMT will do everything they can..." Lance assured weakly, "to slow down the Phazon Corruption...if not completely stop it... Mona, Yuffie, 5-Volt...keep the kids safe for us...they've got spirit. We Contras have always known that..."

"We'll hold onto your holy gadgets with utmost care," said Mona, grabbing hold of Bill and Lance's Contra Rifles. "Now, I know for certain Aaron's rifle is sky blue..."

"The red one is Lance's, and the blue one's Bill's," stated Yuffie, borrowing Ami's Bomberman Watch. "May the toon bombs with a soul help us avenge Regulus!"

9-Volt's mother picked up the Contra Rifle that was registered to Aaron. "Never in all my life have I had to use a machine gun, but if this is where it leads, I'll take the chance. Especially now that he's back..."

"Wait, who's back?" White asked with a confused look on his face, Pink sharing the same expression.

"You mean you knew Colonel Bahamut even before today?"

5-Volt sighed painfully, having kept all relations to Bahamut bottled up in her head out of fear for her only son's life. But the man's presence, a sight she wanted to forget, left her no choice but to tell the truth. "...Yes, Pink. I knew him back when my husband was still alive. The man was a major then...taught him everything he knew about crimefighting and being a hero...even contributing to the team. My husband took that as an inspiration to join the Diamond Police Department, passed the examination, and became one of the finest. Gave his life to keep me safe during the Alien Wars, while Bill and Lance - with Pit and Phosphora's help - protected my only child."

Mona closed her eyes momentarily. "I was there, and glad that they came by to help me out. I owe my life to them ever since, and promised to look after 9-Volt as though we were siblings."

[End BGM]

"...But months later, the ex-mentor changed, though not for the good of humanity..."

[Interlude BGM: Imperial Hangar (Star Wars Rogue Squadron II: Rogue Leader)]

Ahhh, but you misunderstand, dearest 5-Volt, came Colonel Bahamut's voice on the speakers as the radar was replaced with an image of his face on the Crygors' computer screen. Hello. Long time no see...

5-Volt's mood shifted from sadness to anger. "It hasn't been long enough. You couldn't care less that my husband died valiantly."

Bahamut shook his head no yet his devilish grin did not fade, as if to mock the woman's response. My, my... Now is that any way to greet an old friend who taught him how to fight?

"You're no 'friend'...not anymore since your sick plan to throw our country - YOUR country! - into disarray just to get your hands on such a dangerous substance the world over!"

One of which the dastardly higher-ups stole away in a vault, before I could even utilize its potency. I've come to realize Red Falcon's DNA was a gift from the gods, that only the greatest of warriors can touch... Ahhh, I see you've been raising 9-Volt quite well despite the tragic loss of his beloved father.

"You leave my son alone, Bahamut," the boy's mother shot back, her voice growing hoarse. "There's no way in hell I'm letting you do to him what you almost did to Bill and Lance, had Chief Doyle not stepped in!"

The colonel laughed heartily at the mother's words. Is the old man still lying to you after all these years? We were gods once, but then he chose to side with the weak.

Commander Doyle overheard the entire conversation, opting to speak for 5-Volt. "I am but a soldier at heart, and you are a prisoner of your own twisted delusions! You even had the gall to align yourself with Red Falcon's butchers, let alone Black Viper, to turn Earth into a living hell!"

Au contraire, Doyle. Anyway...9-Volt, was it? You and your friends are about to see what 'Uncle' Bahamut has in store for you and your precious city. I promise you it'll be just as deadly. Goodbye! The screen changed back to the map displaying Diamond City from top view.

"This time, the madman's gone too far," muttered 5-Volt, stepping away from 9-Volt with Aaron's Contra Rifle in tow. "I was hoping it wouldn't come down to this, but if I must hunt him down like the snake he is, then so be it. I will avenge my husband!"

The two preteen Bomber-children backed away, knowing full well how nasty 5-Volt can get when she's angry. "Whoa...I'm just so...speechless."

Pink held her hands at chest level, afraid the woman might lash out at any moment. "What he's trying to say is, we've never seen you act that way before."

"I know what you mean, but Colonel Bahamut has no right to endanger my family, let alone my only son, just to goad the Contras into submission. The Hate Bombers are no better either; they're a bunch of monsters that should never have been let out of hell. The sooner we find the traitorous colonel, the sooner I can kill him for threatening to murder 9-Volt and Phoebe in cold blood."

Wario tried to calm her down, but to no avail. Though he was a tough guy at heart, only 5-Volt's anger could ever get his knees knocking in fear. "Whoa, whoa, whoa, I can understand Ashley's desire to destroy anything she hates with her Black Magic, but..."

"I'll handle this, Wario," Mona assured, turning over to 9-Volt's mom. "5-Volt, calm down. We don't need our souls to be consumed with burning hatred. Remember, the Contras need us to protect 9-Volt, Phoebe, White and Pink. But I promise you, we'll put a stop to Red Falcon's resurrection by defeating Black Viper together, and eventually find the cure for Phazon Fever. As a family, related or not."

9-Volt stood beside his "big sister" to speak his word. "In the name of love, peace and justice. Mom, you and Mona have always taught me better. You're not acting like your usual motherly self!"

5-Volt snapped back, raising her voice. "You stay out of this, young man! You have no idea how dangerous Colonel Bahamut has become now! I saw it all on the news five years ago, that psycho attempted to overthrow the Government, and he almost killed Bill and Lance in doing so. Only with Chief Doyle's determination and perseverance, were they able to live to tell the story. I don't want your life or Phoebe's to end like theirs almost did by the colonel's evil hands! White and Pink can tag along since they're older, but I strictly FORBID you and Phoebe from following us! You two are to stay right here, and that is FINAL!" She stamped her right foot to emphasize the word "final."

"That's enough!" Dr. Crygor stopped what he was doing in order to quell 5-Volt's anger. "Your son already lost his father during the Alien Wars, and the Contras are in desperate need of medical attention. Are you seriously trying to add your life to the list?! Now, I know you've made your point--"

"Dr. Crygor," interrupted 5-Volt, still bearing her stern tone of voice, "9-Volt needs to hear the whole story for himself. Phoebe, too."

[End BGM]

Without a second thought, 9-Volt walked closer and threw his arms around his mother's legs, at which point tears came out of his eyes. Though he was no crybaby nowadays, he couldn't stand to see her acting cold-hearted and mean in front of him any longer. "9-Volt, what are you doing?"

"No more hateful thoughts, mom...please, just no more hateful thoughts."

Her anger slowly drained away. "Did I say...I...was..."

"When the scientist asks you to stop," Doyle advised firmly, "you should listen. We will defeat Colonel Bahamut for his treachery before the night is done. But in order to do so, we should focus on our objective to defend Diamond City and its civilians against collateral damage, rather than revenge. The Contras do not condone civilian casualties as we know it, nor do us Colonial Marines."

For the next minute, she bit her lip in guilt for having directed her anger at the wrong person. In the end, the icy crust on her heart melted, making way for her usual tender, motherly self. She knelt down to 9-Volt's level afterwards. "Ohhh, I'm sorry for taking it out on you, sweetie. C'mere."

[Comfort BGM: Melody of the Lute (Final Fantasy IV)]

She enveloped her son in a big, warm hug. "Shhh...It's okay, 9-Volt."

"P-please don't get angry anymore..."

The mother planted an affectionate kiss on her child's forehead. "I know, my little ball of sunshine...I know. I was afraid of losing you like you and I lost your dad five years ago, during the Alien Wars. Still, that's no excuse for taking my anger out on you. I love you, and I always will, no matter what. You, your three fellow heroes, and your big sister. You're all part of my family too."

Mona smiled serenely, offering her own hug around mother and son. Phoebe, White and Pink joined in too, turning the moment into one big, sincere family hug. 5-Volt continued, "Thank you, everyone...And you're right, 9-Volt, we shouldn't ever let hatred consume any of us while we stop those maniacs in the name of love, peace and justice."

Wario picked his nose. "Yeah, yeah, blah blah blah. Can we get moving and cook Black Viper's goose already?"

Yuffie smacked him across the face. "Hey, what gives?!"

"They're having a moment here, don't ruin it."

"...Weh. Wake me up when it's over." Yuffie rolled her eyes in annoyance and dragged him away to another room by the arm. "OW! Not so hard! Jeez Laweez, Yuffie, take a chill pill; I'm just screwing around is all."

"Will you zip your lip, please? Thank you." She turned over to Penny. "By the way, did you get hold of Kat and Ana, and their sensei? I hope they're okay."

"I already tried, but there's no response. I'm worried that Diamond Dojo may already be under attack by now...but thankfully Dribble and Spitz gave Keyla, Patricia and Maya a ride here at no charge. They explained everything to the Lower Birth."

"Keyla, Patricia and Maya?"

"Yep," White answered Yuffie, letting the aforementioned little girls have a turn at hugging 9-Volt and cheering him up with their bouncy ball-themed acts. "They're showing promise among next-gen magical girls! We're gonna need all the help we can get."

[End BGM]

"And you are, right now," called a voice whom only White recognized; a "blue-eyed samurai" in black armor he knew from planet Bomber as Max. Despite their occasional rivalry, they demonstrated teamwork on their homeworld from time to time, defending the innocent against Bagular's forces. "How have you been, White? Different time, different dimension and different planet...and you still need Max's help. But hey, it's good to see you! I heard the news about Professor Ein coming over with Cutie, Lover and Molten to give you guys a hand in stopping those Space Pirates, so I figured why not tag along also."

TO BE CONTINUED...

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