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[Fanfiction] Academy Chronicles: Rise of the Skylanders - A Prequel to SSMB Heroes Academy

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The next chapter has landed!

CHAPTER 6: THE KUMA FAMILY

Spoiler

Chapter 6: The Kuma Family

So, they think they can just steal Alter-Ego’s source code now? I don’t think so. I could feel the wind hitting my face as I dashed down the Borg Industries tower with Sonic, giving chase to these 5 mysterious new bears.

“Ugh! These guys got too much of a head start! Are we gonna make it down before them?!” I asked Sonic, who naturally is ahead of me.

“We’ll make it, Sayaka! Just speed up!” Sonic urged me, running as fast as he possibly can. However, the circumstances involving the pull of gravity made it might hard to even use my powers to run on a wall like this.

Above us, a barrage of pink arrows fell, trying to hit the rocketing Monodam, who has his four siblings wrapped in his cold embrace. No doubt, that’s Madoka.

After many attempts, an arrow finally hit the robot, causing Monodam to let go of his siblings. Screaming, the five fell uncontrollably.

“Hah! Awesome job, Madoka! It’s lights out for them!” I cheered.

“Really? Thanks, Sayaka!” Madoka bashfully said with a small laugh.

“We’re not done yet,” Homura stated, falling from above. “There’s still a matter of finding that thumb drive.”

“I don’t smell anything thumb-y or drive-y!” Pop Fizz exclaimed, clawing his way down as fast as possible.

Before Homura could explain how it’s not exactly possible to track down a thumb drive through its scent, we reached the bottom.

Purple Heart, after putting Makoto and Kyoko down unleashed her sword, itching for a fight. “Alright, where are those bears?!”

Her eyes then lock on the five cubs, tumbling down the grass and into a bush. We could hear mumbling from there. Slowly, we inched our way to the bush, listening attentively…

“Uncle! Look! We got the drive!” Monotaro happily stated.

“I don’t see a fuckin’ drive!” An unfamiliar voice shouted.

“Don’t get your ass outta class, Uncle! Monodam has it shoved down his throat by yours truly! Come on, you bucket of bolts! Spit it out!” Monokid boasted, with the sound of slapping metal following it. He must’ve hit Monodam had on the back of the neck.

“UN-SUIT-ABLE ME-THOD OF STOR-AGE. BLAAAAAGH!”

…I don’t want to think of what Monodam just did.

“Ohhh… so much robot vomit! All the gears and oil… I… I’m gonna do it agaiiin! BLRBLRBLRBLR!”

…I don’t want to think of what Monophanie just did.

“Hey! Don’t get that stuff on me, ya squeamish little…”

Monosuke was then interrupted by the unfamiliar voice.

“Alright, alright. So… did my cloaking devices work? Were you fuckers unseen?”

“Nuh-uh! We were as silent as can be! Not a single eye of suspicion came our way!” Monotaro claimed, being dead wrong.

“WE WERE CAUGHT. DIS-CIP-LES ARE ON OUR TRAILS.”

“Oh yeah… my mistake. Forgot about that.”

“Waaaaait! You were caught?!”

“Yeah, unfortunately,” Monosuke replied. “They could be watchin’ us. They could even have found us if we weren’t quie-“

Suddenly, a gun makes its way through the bush and onto Monosuke’s head.

“You weren’t.” Homura bluntly said, causing the cubs to go into a panic.

Dashing out of the bushes and trampling Homura, six bears tumbled into our grasps. The sixth being an all-black Monokuma, adorned in a black cap, eyepatch on his left eye and a tie, all wrapped up with gold chains around his neck. It’s as if he was some sort of ursine mobster.

Makoto’s eyes widen at the sight of him.

“Wait… I heard of this bear before from Komaru! You’re…”

Kurokuma, what’s it to you, asshole?!” The foul-mouthed bear replies, spitting a cigar from his mouth.

“Aren’t you… dead or something?” Makoto asked.

Seriously, man? Asking questions to the enemy like this at this time?!

“Pffft! You comparin’ me to my predecessor? Please! I’m a much better me, built from the bowels of LOSE’s labs itself!” Kurokuma bragged, straightening his tie. “I’m no advisor! I’m an inventor! Respect my intellect, assholes!”

Tails scoffed. “Invent? You? Gotta be joking with those paws.”

Kurokuma’s red eye twinkled. “Okay, smartass… guess you need a first-hand introduction to what I can really do to fuck shit up!”

Tails, cocky got out his electro-wrench. His electric Enerbeam unleashed from the top, ready to fight.

“Finally, something to fight!” I said. I whipped out my sword as my cape flowed in the wind.

Sonic grinned as his Sentinel Sword ignited with fire. “We’ll knock the stuffing right out of you.”

“Cute. You think I’m made of stuffing.” Kurokuma chuckled. He then reached for his stomach and opened it up…

…What lurked inside was guns of all shapes and sizes. Gatling guns, laser guns, bazookas, sniper rifles, the works.

Did he seriously build all that into himself?

Before I could question any further, Kurokuma opened fire with no restraint. The missiles began flying all over the place, catching all of us off-guard.

“Ah!” Makoto shouted as a missile came for him. Luckily, Kyoko jumped in to save him, the two falling on the floor, barely missing the attack.

“Honestly… how many times do I have to have your back like this?” Kyoko asked with a small, sarcastic smile.

“Eheheh… I lost count.” Makoto replied with a small blush before grabbing Kyoko’s hand and pulled himself up.

“Heh, lovebirds.” I said to the two, as I ran to them and reflected bullets to keep him safe.

Tails, however didn’t lose any focus. As Sonic reflected the missiles, Tails did his best to whip his wrench at Kurokuma. The Enerbeam managed to wrap around one of the guns as Tails pulled. The gun flew out of Kurokuma’s body as it got hit by a laser, cutting it in half.

Madoka, Homura, Purple Heart and Pop Fizz on the other hand found themselves facing off against the Monokubs.

Monokid hastily grabbed the flash drive and shoved it down Monodam’s throat once more. “You want that thing? Gotta get it through him!”

Homura gave a small chuckle. “Fine by me.”

Whipping out two pistols, the raven-haired Disciple began firing at Monodam, who proceeded to fly into the air with his rocket feet and narrowly avoid the bullets.

Charging ahead, Monodam grabs Homura by the neck and slammed her down. He proceeded to throw her in the grass repeatedly with great force.

“GET A-LONG, GET A-LONG, GET… A…. LONG!”

“Stop it!” Madoka cried, shooting arrows at Monodam. One managed to hit his rocket feet, making him release Homura.

“Homura! A-Are you okay?” Madoka asked, tending to the injured Magical Girl.

“I’m… fine…” Homura groaned, but still relieved to have Madoka tend to her aid.

Of course, I took this opportunity to tease them.

“LOVEBIRDS!” I screamed, sticking my tongue, still not losing sight of the missiles as I effortlessly whack them away with my sword.

“W-Watch your mouth, Sayaka Miki!” Homura yelled, shaking her fist while all Madoka could do was blush profusely.

Meanwhile, Pop Fizz leaped atop of Monodam’s head, his beast form claws prying his mouth open. “Open… WIIIIIIDE!”

He then reached into Monodam’s throat and retrieved the flash drive.

“Haha! Victory for the Fizz!”

Before Pop Fizz could savor the moment, however, his paw was then attacked by a set of ninja stars. One got lodged in his arm as he winces in pain, dropping the drive and falling off Monodam.

“OW, OW, OW!”

Dashing at incredible speed, Monotaro grabbed the drive and turned to Pop Fizz. His free hand got out more shurikens and waved them mockingly.

“Haha! Victory for the Taro!”

“Oh no you don’t!”

In a streak of purple, Purple Heart swiped the drive from Monotaro’s hands. She flew high into the sky, holding the drive.

Monophanie frantically hopped in a panic. “Uncle! Uncle! The purple girl has it!”

Kurokuma turned like a turret, directing all of his remaining guns to face Purple Heart. He then fired four heat-seeking missles, swirling in the air after her.

Luckily, as expected of the highly skilled Purple Heart (well, whenever Neptune’s in this form, anyway), she’s prepared. Holding the drive in one hand and her sword in another, she slashed at the incoming missiles, destroying them before they could reach her at all.

“Hah! Is that the best you got?” Purple Heart laughed.

“Nep! Look out!” Sonic yelled.

This immediately got the girl’s attention. “Eh?!”

“HELL, YEAH!” Sliding down on his knees, Monokid began to play his guitar loudly. It made many of us close our eyes on impulse, a large soundwave reaching Purple Heart and shattering her glass-like wings…

…And forced her to revert to Neptune.

“Wah! That’s no faaaaair!” Neptune exclaimed. She scrambled for the flash drive as the two fell… only for Monosuke to jump atop of Monokid and grab the flash drive.

“All’s fair in love an’ war!” Monosuke chuckled, shooting lasers from his glasses.

The laser hit the grass, creating a cloud of smoke.

Sonic turned to me. “Sayaka! Play ball!”

I grinned as I held up my sword. “Got it!”

Sonic jumped up in the air and curled into a ball. Using my magic to make my sword more blunt than sharp, I took aim and whacked Sonic with all of my might.

Monosuke adjusted his glasses after the strike, looking at his paw with the flash drive. “Uncle! Cat-“

Out of the smoke came Sonic, who thanks to my batting skills hit Monosuke right on the head. His glasses fell and smashed into pieces as he let go of the drive.

Getting back on his feet, Sonic grabbed the drive. “It’s been fun, but it’s over!”

Retracting his guns, Kurokuma unleashed his claws. “Nuh-uh! It’s just begun, motherfucker!”

Sonic frowned. “I said…”

As if it was right on cue, Future Foundation soldiers rushed out of the building, all wielding guns and aiming at the six bears. Leading the pack was Kyosuke himself, holding his signature sword.

“…It’s over.”

 

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Time for a long overdue new chapter!

CHAPTER 7: ENOSHIMA

Spoiler

Chapter 7: Enoshima

In no time at all, the six bears were surrounded by Future Foundation guards. It’s a good thing they came out in the time they did, who knows if they could’ve released a trump card.

“What’s going on, Sonic?” Kyosuke asked me, his tone being that of annoyance. However, I can’t tell if this is because of the enemies in front of him, or if he’s still angry about the conference.

I’ll just chalk it up to being both.

“These guys broke in and stole AE’s source code.” I replied, my sword still pointed at the bears.

Kurokuma then objected, albeit poorly.

“Oi! We didn’t break in! We just… walked in casually donnin’ disguises! Get your facts fuckin’ checked ya talking M&M!”

“You. Shut up.” Homura ordered bluntly.

“Doesn’t matter. We’re ending this matter here and now,” Kyosuke said. “Men!”

At his cue, all the Future Foundation members cock their guns, ready to fire away at Kurokuma and the Monokubs.

Monophanie, being the most emotionally frail of the bears began to tear up at her incoming destruction.

“WAAAAH! I want daaaaddy!” She cried.

Kyosuke chuckled at this chance to eradicate symbols of despair. Old habits never die, I suppose.

“No dad’s going to save you now! Men, open fi-“

Before Kyosuke could deliver the final command, a spotlight covered the area.

“I’m the one opening fire today!” A familiar voice taunted from above.

Suddenly, a barrage of bullets rained down from the sky. Me and the others did our best to guard ourselves and the more helpless men… however some soldiers were gunned down, falling to the floor. Their bodies twitched slightly before losing all life.

I gritted my teeth and pointed my sword at whatever’s creating that spotlight. Shooting a fireball at it, the attack unfortunately hit with no damage. Whatever it was, it’s fireproof.

With many men down, the guns deactivate as the spotlight disappeared. What was above us is now crystal clear, the bright red paintjob standing out against the night sky.

It was a battle helicopter of sorts, a very familiar battle helicopter at that for the citizens of Ninjago City. It belongs to the world’s infamous mercenary: Ronin. The vehicle’s name?

The R.E.X.

The thing is… that voice from above sounded nothing like Ronin’s! It’s supposed to be more gruff. This one is squeaky and deceivingly upbeat.

Makoto, however instantly recalled that voice before any of us could put the piece together. Fist balled up as he looked at his fallen comrades, he yelled at the top of his lungs…

“JUNKO ENOSHIMA!”

Popping out from a door on the R.E.X, answering Makoto’s call was a teddy bear. His right side white, and his left black. The black side sported a devilish grin and a red eye compared to the standard stuffed animal look of the white side.

Junko Enoshima. The name of the Ultimate Despair. Both an enemy of Makoto’s and an enemy of mine. She brought upon the end of her world, corrupted thousands, killed millions and even after her death… she came back. Revived, more powerful and on the brink of total domination until the Disciples with the help of Makoto killed her once more.

Now there she is, spearheading lose with her soul trapped in this stuffed toy, going by the male alias of Monokuma.

“Oh? You called, Makoto?” Monokuma asked, as if he was innocent in this mess. His voice was loud, able to be heard despite the noises of the R.E.X.

Kyosuke stabbed his sword into the ground. “Enoshima!”

“Wow! Looks like everybody wants a piece of me! I’m only a young, pure, innocent bear! I’m not ready for a harem yet!”

Monokid however jumped for joy. “Papa Kuma! Papa Kuma!”

“Hang on there, Sonny Boy! I’m gonna get’cha!” Monokuma said to him.

I then shoot another fireball at the exposed area where Monokuma is. “Not if I have anything to say about it!”

The bear quickly hid behind the door, narrowly dodging my attack. “What a welcome! Ronin!”

Another voice could be heard over an intercom.

“You got it, pal.”

The rough yet sarcastic voice instantly tipped me off that this is Ronin. Monokuma didn’t just steal the R.E.X. Instead, it appears he hired Ronin himself.

I was so shocked, I didn’t realized that me, the Disciples, Makoto, Kyoko, Kyosuke and all the remaining soldiers were caught in a strong metal net.

“Guys! We gotta get outta here!” Sayaka yelled, slashing at the net with her sword. However, it was so powerful, the sword couldn’t cut through it.

“We need something else to cut it. Perhaps something like a saw.” Kyoko suggested.

Homura looked at her shield. “Stand back.”

“We can’t exactly stand back given uh… our current range of movement.” Pop Fizz corrected Homura, tangled in the net more tightly than the rest of us.

Stretching out her arm, Homura’s shield which was mounted near her elbow erected metal spikes along the rims. These spikes were an adjustment made by Tails and they’ve been rather useful to her.

Not as useful as her old ability to stop and travel through time but you take what you can get.

With the spikes sawing through the net, sparks flew our direction. It was uncomfortable, hot and overall unpleasant.

Impatient, I joined in. I curled up into a ball and began spinning into the net, my spines providing enough friction to saw through the net as well.

With our combined efforts, the net flew open, freeing us from its cold embrace.

We got our weapons out to take down the Monokuma family only to discover one crucial thing…

…They’re gone.

 

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A new chapter is here, y'all!

CHAPTER 8: RESIDUE AND REBELLION

Spoiler

Chapter 8: Residue and Rebellion

 

“Look up!” I yelled, alerting the Disciples, the Future Foundation soldiers and Kyoko. Sure enough, peeking from the R.E.X’s window is Kurokuma and the Monokubs, waving at us tauntingly.

“Now that’s what I call a quality distraction!” Monokuma laughed.

Kyosuke waved his fist in rage. “Enoshima!”

“Enoshima this, Enoshima that, can ya shut up already?!” Monokuma groaned. If he had pupils, they would be rolling. Holding onto the USB drive, Monokuma nudged the pilot, Ronin. “Let’s skedaddle, man! The faster we move, the more we pay ya!”

The mention of being paid extra intrigued the mercenary. Stepping on it, the R.E.X proceeded to fly away, but not until hearing Monokuma’s insidious laugh that I’m all too familiar with.

“Puhuhuhuhuhuhu!”

A gun sprouted from the top of the R.E.X, shooting a blue ball into the sky which exploded into a swirling vortex where the flying battle copter made its escape into.

Just then, I heard Sonic bark out an order.

“Tails!” He exclaimed.

Tails’ ears twitched, knowing what to do. Flying as high as he could in the time allotted, Tails got out his DEUS watch and scanned the shrinking portal.

As he made his way down, he dusted himself off. “Piece of cake!”

I scratched my head. “What did you do, exactly?”

Tails chuckled with the same confidence he seemed to always have when handling technology. “Simple, Makoto! I just scanned the portal residue.”

“Portal residue?” I asked.

Homura crossed her arms, proceeding to explain the rest.

 “To my knowledge, certain portals give out a specific energy signature that can lead to the coordinates of where the portal leads to.”

Kyoko nodded in understanding. “So you can track down where they went…”

“Precisely!” Tails responded. “You catch on quick!”

Well, she is the Ultimate Detective…

Kyosuke glared at Tails.

“So, what are you waiting for?! Who knows where they went with whatever they stole?”

I nodded in agreement. “Y-Yeah… Alter-Ego’s source code contains the data to potentially create more Liberators.”

Just thinking of the race of programs that destroyed my home a second time just sends chills up my spine.

Sayaka fists ball up. “You got it! Let’s get moving, guys!”

Neptune cheered in agreement. “Whoo-hoo! A neeeew adventure!”

With that, the Disciples ran off into the Borg Industries building, presumably out to find their method of transportation.

Kyosuke then turned to me. “Now, you stay here and figure out what specifically about Alter-Ego they stole when it comes to the source code.” He commanded.

I look at Kyosuke, then back to the building. Back to Kyosuke, then back at the building…

Making my move, I grabbed Kyoko’s arm and ran off towards the Disciples.

“Makoto! What are you doing?!” Kyoko exclaimed, losing her cool for a slight, slight moment because of my sudden and assertive action.

I furrowed my brows, running as fast as I can. “Standing around here won’t prove my point. If you want to show Kyosuke that the Disciples need more help to stop whatever LOSE is planning, we have to show him!”

Kyosuke reached out. “Where are you going?! I still have more to say! Naegi!”

“NAEGI!”

 

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The next chapter has arrived!

CHAPTER 9: WE HAVE LIFTOFF!

Spoiler

Chapter 9: We Have Liftoff!

Making it to the lowest floor, deep underground the Borg Industries building, the elevator opened up to reveal a hangar bay.

Surrounding us is hundreds of vehicles and other means of transportation. Tanks, aircrafts, even mechanized dragons, everything Borg has for his Nindroid army to get around is stored here. But this place is also where we store some of our ships as well.

Tails looked at his DEUS and pressed a button, causing lights to flicker and a horn blaring from the far left of the room.

“The Dreamcast is over there!” I said, pointing to the locations of the lights and sound.

“No shit, Sayaka.” Homura huffed, obviously causing me to get annoyed.

Pop Fizz became the first to run towards the ship, hands flailing. “Oooooh! Oooooh! I wanna drive!”

However, the blue gremlin was pulled by his backpack by Tails.

“Nuh-uh. No way am I letting someone like you drive. Let the person who built the thing drive it!” Tails insisted, triggering a disappointed groan from Pop Fizz.

All of us Disciples arrived at Tails’ ultimate spaceship, designed for interdimensional travel. The “ship casted from his dreams” he calls it, hence why it has the name of the “Dreamcast”.

It’s a circular ship, with two giant spherical thrusters on each side. The top and bottom are outfitted with special cannons and a final hole to act as the main thruster on the back. A far cry from my Magical Girl days, that’s for sure. Not that I’m complaining, spaceships are awesome.

With that said, Sonic makes his command.

“Alright, team. All abo-“

DING!

The elevator rang again, causing all of us to turn around.

“Huh? Did we leave anyone behind?” Madoka asked.

She turned around, mentally counting all of us. Me, Sonic, Tails, Homura, Neptune, Pop Fizz… every Disciple that came around is here and accounted for. So who’s coming to the hangar bay?

Well, we didn’t have to wait long to find out.

Stepping out of the opened elevator door was Makoto and Kyoko.

“Huh? You two? What are you doing here?” Sonic asked.

Makoto turned to Sonic. “We’re coming with you.” He stated.

That immediately caused Sonic’s eyes to widen. He shaked his open hands in protest.

“Whoa, whoa, whoa… no can do, Naegi! You were in a real bad risk taking on those bears with us when you don’t even have fighting experience! Wherever they went, it’s gonna be real risky! I can’t afford having you all lose your lives.”

Kyoko’s eyebrows raised.

“Doesn’t that sound hypocritical of you?”

Sonic’s face furrowed into a frown.

Kyoko continued to explain. “You went on at Kyosuke about gathering a bigger team to take down threats. Wouldn’t you think this is an ample opportunity to prove this to him?”

“Y-Yeah,” Sonic replied. “But this is different. You have no combat experience whatsoever. You don’t even have any powers.”

“But we’re far more experienced at investigating than any of you. If you want to uncover Monokuma’s plot, you’re going to need us. Not everything requires brawn, Sonic. You seem to miss that.”

I lean forward to my partner. “Kyoko has a point, you know? Don’t worry, we can protect them. This is our chance, let’s not lose this now!”

Taking a deep breath, Sonic makes his response.

“…Fine, but be extra careful.”

Makoto smiled. “Thanks, Sonic. You won’t regret this.”

With that, all of us entered the Dreamcast.

Once we’re all in our seats, Tails entered the coordinates from his DEUS onto the control panel: The Master System. Next to Tails is Sonic, naturally.

“Alright, Tails. Where are we going?” He asked.

Typing things down on an installed keyboard, the front window displayed a hologram of our destination.

“…Skylands, apparently.”

Skylands? The home of the Skylanders? What does Monokuma want there? There are tons of mythical and powerful artifacts, but what requires Alter-Ego?

Just as those thoughts race through my mind, the Dreamcast proceeded to lift off. The sirens in the Hangar Bay go off as a door above opens, revealing the starry night sky.

The Dreamcast took off into the night, the cannon on top shooting a vortex to which we fly into, ready to foil Monokuma and LOSE’s plot once and for all.

 

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10 chapters, baby! Here we go!

CHAPTER 10: WELCOME TO SKYLANDS!

Spoiler

Chapter 10: Welcome to Skylands!

Zipping through the dark blue vortex at the speed of light, I looked behind my seat to see Makoto, nervously fidgeting in his seat.

This uneasy nature of the boy worried me. I may not know him long, at least compared to the rest of the people in the Dreamcast, but I know this isn’t like him. Is he getting second thoughts?

Before I could speak up, however, a bright flash made its way onto our windows, signaling us that we’re entering our target destination where Monokuma and the R.E.X escaped to.

“So… this is Skylands, huh?” Kyoko asked, her stoic demeanor obviously not explicitly showing any sense of awe and wonder.

Although something told me she’s thinking otherwise. Just a hunch.

I put aside my thoughts on Makoto for the moment. I was sure I’ll get an opportunity to ask what’s bugging him later in private. What matters now is doing one of my favorite things: Introducing a brand new universe to somebody.

As a Disciple, an elite breed of Skylander, I certainly know how any Skylands worked. This included. Helps that I embarked on a couple adventures with the Skylanders who specifically work here between the Liberator Crisis and then, but that’s for another time.

“Yup! Skylands! Ain’t it a pretty sight, huh? One of my favorite places to visit since there always seems to be something new in this infinite mass of islands.”

Yes, Skylands looks pretty awesome for you Writers seeing it all on a screen. Yet seeing it in front of your very eyes, a large space full of vibrant floating islands… it’s indescribable.

Homura, arms folded simply looked out the window. She is clearly not impressed, especially since she lives in the Golden Skylands with all of us Disciples which is… exactly the same thing. Just in another plane of existence.

“W-Wow. This is amazing. I’ve never been to a world like this. For the longest time, every dimension is rather samey with some differences. Usually cities. This, though… wow.” Makoto said in awe.

Sayaka nudged Makoto in response.

“Yeah, feel you buddy!”

Makoto and Sayaka do have quite a bit in common in this case, being normal students now fighting crime on a multiversal scale.

Although… Sayaka works with me to do the actual fighting and Makoto does behind the scenes stuff.

Still, it’s something.

“Environment aside, what matters is finding Monokuma. Tails, did you pick up anything?” Kyoko asked, breaking the friendly banter.

Tails, looking at a radar on the Dreamcast’s Master System shook his head.

“No. Nothing out of the ordinary in terms of otherworldly vehicles nearby. Just the native airships and hot air balloons.”

Pop Fizz, way at the back waved his hand, shouting for attention.

“Hm? What is it, Pop?” Madoka asked.

Pop Fizz hopped in his seat in satisfaction. “Uh, HELLLLLOOO?! This is Skylands? Maybe a certain group of people might’ve tracked them down! You know, the Sky…”

“…line! We’ll find them from way up above!” Neptune interrupted, pointing her finger upwards.

We all glared at Neptune in disappointment.

Neptune stuck out her tongue in response.

“I’m just screwin’ with ya! The Skylanders!” She said.

“Yeah! Let’s head over to the Skylanders Academy! We should have the coordinates. Tails, floor it!” I commanded.

Tails saluted as he set the Dreamcast to overdrive.

“Roger!”

With that, the eight of us blasted off into the bright, blue sky.

 

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New chapter, ahoy!

CHAPTER 11: MAKOTO'S DOUBT

Spoiler

Chapter 11: Makoto’s Doubt

It’s only been a couple of minutes, and I already forgot that we were on a mission to track down who is essentially my arch-enemy.

I stare out the window of the Dreamcast, occasionally pulling on Kyoko’s arm whenever a cool sight catches my eye so I could show her. Complex airships, flying dragons, hovering islands, if you told little me that one day I would one day travel to other dimensions like this where the natives have superpowers and all that…

…Frankly, I probably would’ve believed you. Back in elementary school, I did get the nickname of “Makoto the Moron” for how easily I fell for blatant lies. Thank god I got out of that phase or else I probably would’ve died back in Hope’s Peak in the first Class Trial.

I shuddered at the thought and proceed to look at the sights that Skylands has to offer.

Our destination, Skylanders Academy… It’s better than Hope’s Peak in its old state, I can already say that for certain even without saying the actual facility. Still, I can still think about the similarities the two schools share thanks to my research.

One is a training ground for veteran and aspiring heroes, honing their talents and abilities so they could go out in the world and fight evil… be the hope of the world. Hope’s Peak is just like that. Just, you know…

…Without the powers.

That comparison began to do something I haven’t felt in a long time. Doubt. Kyosuke’s words echo throughout my mind from the meeting back at Borg Industries.

“For all this talk about pacifism, you wish to send more people into battle? Are you going back on your own words, Ultimate Hope?”

It did refute Kyosuke’s words… although I’d be lying if I said my statements weren’t due to the heat of the moment. Now, having time to think, a cloud of uncertainty began to flow through my brain.

I survived a great many things: The Tragedy, two Killing Games, and a catastrophe that nearly brought every universe to ashes… and one who only did so to my world. Although the last two, the ones that really count in this context is something I can’t really say is an accomplishment. For the Link Joker Crisis, all I gave was moral support. For the Liberator Crisis, I focused on the evacuation, getting everyone I could possibly get off our dimension away safely.

I never fought. Not once. Not physically. I just am not that kind of guy. It worked in my world, all it took was the right words and a rebuttal here and there and I saved the world.

But this is a whole new ball game. I talked big about using force and supporting the Disciples… but what force can I even bring? It’s not like I can tackle someone like Monokuma to the floor. He was able to take on Sakura without a scratch! I don’t have elemental skills, superpowers or anything.

I’m still just some guy. A guy with no good combat experience.

…Was I way too over my head? Did I really make the right choice? Or did my stance as the Ultimate Hope, the one that always makes the right decision get the best of me.

Oh god, was I growing an ego? What… What did I becom-

I felt nudging as I turned around. A brief “ahem” came from Kyoko, signaling me with a head gesture to pay attention to the intercom.

I put my inner, mental struggles aside to hear an intercom announcement from Tails.

“Landing in Skylanders Academy! I repeat, landing in Skylanders Academy!”

The soft rumbling and feel of steady velocity came to a stop as I felt gravity complete its pull onto us.

We’ve landed.

 

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Somebody want.... DWAGONS?

CHAPTER 12: SPYRO THE DRAGON

Spoiler

Chapter 12: Spyro the Dragon

With the opening of the Dreamcast’s doors, me, the other Disciples, Makoto and Kyoko walked off the ship to be greeted with the prestigious Skylanders Academy. For me and the Disciples, this is nothing new to me.

Where I live now, it’s pretty much the same. So it’s comfortable. I bet for Makoto and Kyoko, though, this is mind-blowing. They’re standing on a giant island in the sky with this beautifully build structure. Walking around the campus are tons of mystical creatures. From dragons like Spyro, to gremlins like Trigger Happy and everything in between, the Skylanders are the most versatile hero team I have ever seen.

…And I’m glad to be a part of them, in a sense. I’m just a Skylander from another plane of existence.

Walking to my side, Sonic looked around.

“Keep an eye out for any Purple Dragons. We need to report to Spyro. He’s gotta help.” He said to me and the others.

Makoto meanwhile stepped out, he seemed sad, but that expression was also merged with that of wonder. What was he thinking?

I then turned to the others, noticing a certain member of our crew missing.

“Hey… where did Pop go?” I asked.

Sure enough, our unpredictable alchemist gremlin has run off on his own. He really needs to stop doing that. His attention span’s as worse as Neptune’s!

Yeah, as if that could even be possible.

I then heard chatting in the distance: Loud chatting in a distinctive, scratchy voice that seemed to fluctuate in tone. Yeah, no mistaking it. That’s Pop Fizz.

I urge the others to follow me as we made it to where the sound came from.

We ran off to a field to the right of our landing point. It led to a grassy field with a fairy floating in a nearby corner, waiting to give Skylanders their upgrades named Persephone.

Lo and behold, not too far off from Persephone is Pop Fizz.

Not just one Pop Fizz, though… but two.

“Wow, you look like me!” One Pop Fizz said.

“Wow, you look like me, as well!” The other replied.

“How is that possible, dude? Did that cloning potion work…?” He said to the other.

“Because I’m you from another multiverse, dude!” Our Pop Fizz explained.

The two then began to scream happily, flailing madly.

Guess he didn’t know of us.

“Well, well. When I heard of two Pop Fizzes, I had a feeling it was you guys.”

A voice made it to our ears, immediately getting our attention. Sonic was the first to turn around to the voice’s direction with a grin.

Standing before us was a purple dragon with bronze accents for places like his horns, spikes and chest. That is who we’re looking for. The leader of the Skylanders.

Spyro the Dragon.

Sonic walked forward, hand raised.

“Hey, Spyro! Long time no see!” He said.

Spyro’s wing raised up, the hand and the wing colliding for the equivalent of a high-five. Sonic and Spyro have shared quite a good relationship since our arrival to this multiverse. They helped us quite a bit in several adventures.

That’s for another story, though… Have we already said that?

“So, what brings you all, here?” Spyro asked.

“Well, to put it simply… LOSE has come here, and we need to figure out why.” Sonic explained.

Spyro put his claws against his chin, stroking them across his scaled skin.

“Hmmm… Got it. Let’s report this to Eon.” He tells us, urging us to follow.

 

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The Skylanders look through a library!

...Yeah!

CHAPTER 13: BOOK BROWSING

Spoiler

“Master Eon!” Spyro exclaimed as he entered the Academy. Awaiting all of us is a hallway adorned by stylish stone walls, ancient relics, illuminated with torches.

I turned to my brother, noticing Tails wasn’t impressed at the lack of technological advances in the architecture.

“What do you expect? A laser show?” I said with a smirk.

“…Maybe.” Tails replied.

Eventually, we all make it to the main lobby. In the middle lied a crystal centerpiece with the floating image of an old man, the spirit of Master Eon, the last Portal Master in Skylands.

“Ah, Spyro. I see you have brought some familiar friends. Greetings, Sonic.” Eon said as he leaned forward to me.

“Nice to see ya again, Eon.” I replied with a small salute.

Eon then adjusted his gaze to see the others. His eyes locked on Makoto and Kyoko.

“I see some new faces, as well. And you are?”

Makoto simply bowed slightly, not knowing how to acknowledge such a powerful, ancient man. “Makoto Naegi… Sir… Master… Uhh… Your Highness?”

Eon chuckled.

“Eon is fine, young man.” He then turned to the detective. “And you?”

“Kyoko Kirigiri.” Kyoko bluntly introduced.

“I see. Welcome, you two to Skylanders Academy. Now tell me, what brings you to our dimension?”

Sayaka stepped up in front of me.

“It’s LOSE. Monokuma and his goons stole something valuable from us and made it here. We gotta track them down!” She explained.

“…I see, so you think we could help find them?” Eon asked.

Neptune looked at the others and then back to Eon.

“Well, duh.”

Spyro spoke up after that.

“I suggest we check the library. If we can combine our knowledge and theirs, perhaps we can figure something out.”

Master Eon nodded. “Sounds like a good idea. I will contact Hugo to assist you in your browsing.”

“…Why exactly do we need this Hugo? It’s a simple library, is it not?” Kyoko asked, eyebrow raising.

Pop Fizz then burst into laughter.

“I-I’m sorry, did that purple chick say the library is simple?! Haaaaahahaha!”

Kyoko looked down at the hysterical gremlin.

“How big is this library?”

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

Now I know why Tails wanted this place to be more advanced. We could actually, like search up specifics through a computer instead of combing through rows, and rows, and rows, and rows of books in what I think is the biggest room in the Academy.

And that’s saying a lot, this place makes up an entire island!

I can hear Tails groaning from the other end of the room.

“…What letter are you on, Sayaka?” I groan, speeding through the lined up spines of every book filed under the letter G.

“I’m on D!”

“Yeesh, that slow?!” I groaned. “This is gonna take forever, and we don’t have forever to spend!”

“Just don’t just skim the titles. If you see something important and sounds like info LOSE would be interested in.” Kyoko scolded me.

She should expect more of me. I wasn’t skimming!

…Too much. I could at least comprehend the titles.

“How ‘bout this?! The official documented Skylands history of cake recipes! This is to die for!” Pop Fizz asks from a top shelf, waving a book.

Spyro chuckled. “Even if it’s not my Pop Fizz, he sure acted the same.”

Next to Spyro, browsing the books, this time hopping from shelf to shelf is Hugo, Eon’s apprentice. Unlike the human man, Hugo is a furry bear-like creature called a Mabu, bearing a large backpack and probably even larger glasses.

“I’m pretty sure villains aren’t interested in stealing cakes, Pop!” Hugo corrected the gremlin, adjusting his eyewear.

Neptune, who was next to Pop Fizz looked down at Hugo.

“Heeeey, how would you know? Maybe they could be using that source code to make a good baking partner? I hear that’s a big thing in tech nowadays!”

“L-Like I said, this isn’t something villains would take interest in…” Hugo replied.

“How about that Lux Luthor guy? Didn’t he steal 40 cakes? That’s as many as four tens, and that’s terrible!” Neptune poorly refuted.

Homura groaned as she walked across the books filed under M.

“Can you all just focus?” Homura groaned.

“Alright, alright.” Neptune said, holding her hands up and turned around.

“She’s always a party-poopah.” Pop Fizz chuckles, imitating Neptune’s motions.

Homura glared at the top shelf.

“I heard that…”

Madoka, meanwhile pulled out a book and analyzed it. “Um, could this do?”

Spyro walked up to Madoka, peeking over her shoulder. “Lemme see…”

He put his claw across the cover, tracing around the embossed titling as I came down to see Madoka’s findings.

“Skylands’ Undergrounds?” I recited, looking down at the cover.

“I suppose this is referring to the mines and things like that, although really all that’s there are monsters and rare minerals.” Spyro explained. “I’ve been there once, places like the Molten Mines and the Lava Lakes Railway.”

He looked at me.

“The most powerful things there are the Eternal Fire Source and the Crucible of the Ages. Relics that were destroyed by the Sky Eater years ago…”

Hugo then ran up to the book.

“Hang on, what did you find?!” He asked.

Madoka turned to Hugo.

“Oh, it’s nothing…”

Hugo looked at the book and swiped it from her hands. He opens up the table of contents.

“Hugo, it’s just minerals. LOSE already has a big budget, it’s not like they’re short on cash…” Spyro tells the apprentice.

Hugo squinted, supposedly paying the dragon no mind. He shaked his head. “Perhaps in the mines… but there is something else that lies even deeper.”

Spyro tilted his head.

“Huh? What do you mean?”

Hugo then placed the book near Spyro’s face and points at the lowest entry.

Spyro pushed the book back and put it a readable distance.

“…Elemental Foundations?”

His eyes then widen.

“…Ooooohhh…”

Meanwhile, I whistle to the others to come over. I especially call for someone else in particular.

“Tails, over here!” I said.

Hugo then took the book back, and showed it to everyone. “This is probably the most important thing LOSE could ever gain from Skylands! All I need is information from your program to confirm it!”

Makoto looked at the book. “Let’s find out, then.”

Tails cracked his knuckles and proceeds to read to the specified pages.

“Yeah, let’s…”

Meanwhile, Neptune looked at the scene unfolding with awe.

“Oooooh! So we would be able to find our intel if we read the table of contents! I never do that!”

Kyoko looked at Neptune.

“Do you even read books?” She asked.

Neptune hums to herself.

“Hmmmm... no. Unless Strategy Guides count!”

“They don’t count.”

“Aw.”

 

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With the help of Hugo and Spyro, the pieces are all coming together on LOSE's dangerous plans!

CHAPTER 14: PUTTING THE PIECES TOGETHER

Spoiler

With the decision made that the book Madoka found is the key to figuring out LOSE’s plans, me and the others made our way to where we met Eon to discuss how Alter-Ego’s source code relates itself to these “Elemental Foundations” apparently found in Skylands’ underground.

Two group discussions in one day. That has to be some kind of record for me. Not even I had two trials in the same day back in my days at Hope’s Peak… thank god; I wouldn’t have been able to take that much death in a single sitting.

…Yet I let my entire world down thanks to the Liberators.

I smack my head quickly to cease the doubtful thoughts I’ve been having since I got here. I just hoped nobody noticed m-

Before I could even finish my own thoughts, I felt a hand brush along my head. I turned to see Kyoko looking at me, her gloved hand slightly moving away now that she got my attention.

She didn’t say a word, but I can tell through her eyes that she’s asking “what’s wrong?”

I simply turned away, looking at Spyro as he stepped up, trying to act like nothing is of any concern.

…Although knowing Kyoko, I’d have to open up sooner or later. I just had to delay the inevitable for now.

“Alright Hugo, what am I missing here? What’s so special about that book?” The dragon asked from within the gathering circle we seemed to have formed.

“Spyro,” Hugo began to explain. “You know what happened with the Light and Dark Elements a while back? How they were hidden for years?”

I speak up, already confused.

“What do you mean, hidden Elements?” I asked.

“Oh, right… you don’t know anything about Skylands history, do you?” Tails asked me, which I replied with a simple shake of the head.

Tails steps forward, directing himself to Kyoko and I.

“You see, the Skylanders for the longest time had this weapon known as the Core of Light. When it was destroyed by Kaos years ago, the blast was so powerful; two of the ten Elements of Skylands that were banished into completely different realms!” The fox explained.

“I see…” Kyoko said, nodding in understanding.

That’s more than what I can say, but I’m trying to catch on.

“Then, later, an explosion of equal power also caused by Kaos when he destroyed a near unbreakable prison shook the foundation of Skylands to its core, releasing those lost Elements from the ground!”

Hugo then continued from there.

“Exactly, not bad for a Skylander from another plane of existence,” He complimented.

Tails smirked and walked back to his place to give Hugo some room.

“…Anyway, after that eruption of elemental energy, Mabu scientists and magic experts began to trek down to the deepest depths of Skylands to see what else lurked underneath. Their recordings were hidden in this book!” Hugo said, tapping on the hardcover journal.

“They thought they could find more hidden elements… but rather, they found something else…”

He then began to flip through the pages before stopping perfectly on a specific page.

“After investigating an abandoned Arkeyan manufacturing facility, where they create their warriors, a crew of investigators found a mechanism leading them deep within the core of the island. There, they found what seemed to be an endless source of all kinds of Elemental energies. Historians claimed that this unstable resource was able to infuse Magic and Tech into their skeletal warriors…”

Master Eon looked down at the book to get a good look at this, himself.

“A keen eye, Hugo. It appears that there is an island in Skylands whose foundations carry a gateway to limitless elemental powers…” Eon said.

Just then, something clicked in my head. I had to speak up.

“Hang on, so people back then could just take that power and put it into warriors?” I asked.

Hugo looked up at me from the book and nodded. “Well, yeah, essentially…”

Kyoko stepped forward. “Then we have to find that island. LOSE is definitely there.”

Spyro looked at Kyoko. “Hm? Why is that? Like you said, it has to do with some sort of code they stole?”

Sayaka then jumped into the conversation.

“Yeah, a very dangerous code. A code that can create digital warriors.”

“Warriors who can take physical form and hop between here and the digital world.” Homura continued.

“Warriors who destroyed Makoto’s world!” Madoka added.

Yeah, it makes sense. It’s all coming together…

…And it’s making the pit in my stomach all the more heavier.

“…They’re going to make Elemental Liberators.” I heavy-heartedly concluded.

 

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With the problem identified, the Skylanders know what to do... or more like, who to find.

CHAPTER 15: WHERE TO NOW?

Spoiler

“Liberators? What’s that? Uh, can I get a little more detail?” Spyro asked.

“Liberators. Like we said, they’re living programs that… destroyed my whole world.” Makoto explained.

Following up on that, Tails stepped up.

“Me, Cyrus Borg and Chihiro coded Alter-Ego using reversed engineered Liberator source code I salvaged after that whole crisis. He was made to track down and stop Liberators. A weapon.” He said.

I nodded. “They are usually made to track me and all other Magical Girls down. Since our world is full of suffering, they are coded to kill us. To liberate us from life, the one thing they think is holding us back from our written purpose: To die.”

“Yeah, like Sayaka said, they kill those from franchises involving a lot of death. And what worse franchise is there than Danganronpa?” Sonic finished.

Spyro squinted his eyes. Due to previous adventures with us, he has a somewhat decent grasp on our roles as fictional characters. Still, he’s trying to wrap his head around this new factor.

“…Riiiight…”

“Whatever the case is,” Homura said with a shrug. “LOSE stole that source code from us, which means they have the means to make their own Liberators. They could use those Elemental Banks Hugo described to make them even stronger. Maybe something Alter-Ego can’t counter.”

I then piped up, disrupting the Transfer Student.

“Anyway, we need to get to that island before that’s possible! Hugo, you know where that is?”

Hugo shook his head.

“I’m afraid not, Sayaka. This book didn’t list the coordinates to the island. For good reason, of course if this is what that resource can be used for.”

“So… how did LOSE find that place?” Madoka asked.

Neptune sticks out her tongue playfully, which is a signal to us that she’s thinking. But considering this is Neptune… will this be useful, or lead to another witty joke?

“…Um. Find the author?” Neptune stated.

Hugo’s eyes widened. He looked at the cover again.

“…That’s… possible. The author is listed clear as day.”

“And that is?” Sonic asked.

“Onk Beakman. A famous penguin adventurer. For years, he trekked through the unexplored parts of Skylands to uncover its secrets. His notes state that he helped the Mabu scientists safely make it to that location due to his experience.”

Pop Fizz looked up to the sky. “So, do you know where this Onk Donk guy is?”

“He leaves his location unknown. I don’t know where he lives.” Hugo replied.

“Welp, game over guys. Time to pack up and go home!” Twirling on his heels, Pop Fizz was just about to march out of the Academy.

“…But there is a way to find out.”

Pop Fizz kept still in his marching position.

“You see, Pop, this is something made by Onk himself and distributed all across Skylands. Anyone who has that book actually has a way to get to him: The Cloudbreather Dragon.”

“The Cloudbreather Dragon? Yeah… we used that guy to track down Eon when he was imprisoned once, right? All he needed was, uhhh…”

The dragon snapped his clawed fingers repeatedly, trying to remember.

“…Something. Like, a possession or creation from that person, and he can tell exactly where in Skylands a person is!”

“Ooooh! So it’s like, a super stalking tool. That’s totally not creepy at all!” I said with a smirk tinged with a hint of disgust.

“Regardless, LOSE must have used a copy of that book to find Beakman using that dragon,” Kyoko said to me. “Something I never thought I could say.”

“And then, maybe they forced Beakman to take them to that facility, right?” Makoto asked his girlfriend.

Kyoko nodded as a response.

With that inference laid out before us, our mission is clear. Find the Cloudbreather Dragon, then we find LOSE.

I then looked at everyone. With a determined collision of my fist and my palm, I call out to everyone.

“Alright, everybody! It’s time we find that dragon and stop LOSE from making those Liberators!” I exclaimed with confidence.

Sonic chuckled as he saw me taking the lead.

“You heard her, guys. Let’s rock and roll!”

With that, we bid our goodbyes to Eon and Hugo. Spyro came along with us as we make it out of the Academy as fast as we can. Not a second can be wasted!

Tails whipped out his DEUS, pressing on the watch’s touchscreen to unlock the doors to the Dreamcast. We all hopped inside and took our seats while our fox pilot used the Master System to start up the ship.

As the ship flew up in the sky, I leaned forward from my seat to see the piloting area. Sitting alone is Tails, who turned to us as he pulled a microphone down from the ceiling.

“Alright, Hugo texted me the coordinates to the Cloudbreather’s resting place. Let’s hope he’s there.” He announced through the speakers across the Dreamcast.

“…And expect resistance. No doubt LOSE is gonna try to stop us from reaching him.”

“No sweat. We’ll make mincemeat of them!” I said.

“Don’t get too reckless, Sayaka Miki. We still have two ordinary humans with us.” Homura warned me from across my seat, nudging to the seat where Makoto and Kyoko are.

I turned to see the detective looking ahead, while Makoto is slumped over by the window, giving the sky a thousand yard stare…

“…Right. We’ll cautiously make mincemeat of them.”

 

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New chapter, y'all! Sorry for the wait!

CHAPTER 16: RUNNING UP

Spoiler

The Dreamcast continued to soar through the skies, scraping across the clouds and blazing past what I believe to be hundreds of islands by now.

“Are we there yet?” Pop Fizz asked.

“No,” Tails groaned, annoyed for saying this repeatedly for the past 5 minutes now.

“…Now?”

“No.”

“…How ‘bout now?”

“No.”

“…How ‘bout-“

“Can you just zip it, Pop?! I can’t concentrate!”

And there’s the snap.

Like that, the gremlin goes quiet. This silence however would only last thirty seconds.

“…Are we there yet?” Neptune asked.

Tails yelled out in annoyance, but that was covered up by a sudden alert. Alarms blared throughout the Dreamcast as most of us snapped out of our travel-induced dazes.

“We’re nearing our destination!” Tails exclaimed. “Worst of all, though, we’ve got opposition guarding the Cloudbreather! Get ready for a fight!”

Finally, something interesting.

I hopped out of my seat, spawning my Sentinel Sword.

“Tails, what do we have?” I asked.

Tails leaned forward, looking into a screen on the Master System to show a magnified image on what’s ahead before turning to me.

“We got Drow on the tail. We’re gonna need to wipe ‘em out from the dragon.”

I looked out the window to get a view of what I can see. I see a glimpse of a tail of the dragon, which is wrapped around a mountain, not too far from our destination. It looks stable enough to run on. As we flew closer, I noticed a large temple cradled atop the dragon’s neck. All the while, small elf-like creatures patrol the entire body.

“Can do! Up and at ‘em, Sayaka. We’re running up a dragon.” I tell my partner.

Immediately, Sayaka stood up and followed my lead.

“Alright, leave it to us!” She said, rubbing her hands.

“Eh, what do we do?” Makoto asked me as I passed by them, pointing to Kyoko.

“Stay onboard. We got this.” I told him.

I then turned to the other people onboard.

“We’re gonna need some people airborne to take these guys down. Tails, keep the flight going. Spyro, Nep, you’re in the skies. Back us up.”

Sayaka turned to her fellow Magical Girls.

“Madoka, Homura. You’re good aims. Head on over to the cannons and light ‘em up.” She told them.

“Everything clear?!” Sonic called out.

I received nods, yells of “aye”, exclamations of “yes” and even a playful salute from Pop Fizz. I noticed that Makoto looked distraught, however, nodding slightly.

I sighed before turning to the door.

“We’re heading to the tail. Prepare for dispatch.” Tails said to me.

I grinned before kicking the door open.

“Let’s rock and roll!” I yelled, jumping off the Dreamcast with Sayaka not far behind me. I curled into a ball, spinning towards the scaled tail. I fell on the hard yellow surface, I turned to see walls of scales to my left and right, guarding the area from the smoother blue skin. It’s as if the tail has become a racetrack.

Sayaka landed before me, her cape flowing in the wind. We both stand up. My sword pointed forward while Sayaka unleashed her swords in her hands.

Before us were an army of elves holding spears, emanating dark energy. The Drow: Worshippers of the Darkness and servants of Kaos.

And since Kaos is with LOSE, they’re with LOSE.

Regardless, they’re going down.

The Drow screeched, warning their troops as they charge ahead.

“They’re looking mighty fierce today.” Sayaka said, sharpening her blades.

“They’ve really been working on their game faces.” I replied.

“Hm. Maybe we gotta work on ours!”

And like that, Sayaka rushed forward, letting out a battle cry as she slashed through a Drow as they dissipate into dark energy. All the while, my eyes flash white, activating my own game face.

Catching up, I homing attacked into a Drow soldier, knocking him into a scale before kicking him off, sending the Drow flying into the never-ending abyss that is Skylands.

As I turned back to where Sayaka ran off to, I noticed a ton of spears pointed towards me.

Staring into the vicious eyes of the Drow, I mentally commanded my sword to go into Fire Mode. With the green lining turning red, I swung the Sentinel Sword effortlessly, fire spewing from the sides as it burnt the Drow to ash and darkness.

With a wall of fire in front of me, I channeled my innate wind ability and called forth a gust of wind to wipe the fire away. With the road cleared, I sped up to go side-by-side with Sayaka.

“What’s your score?” I asked, slashing through any incoming Drow charging at me.

Sayaka looked up to see a Drow lunge after her. Sayaka threw her sword into the air as it impales him as he crumbles into darkness airborne.

“Nine so far.” She chuckled.

“Five.” I replied. “Getting better.”

“Maybe you should!” She smirked.

The two of us then jumped up as we hopped between Drow to Drow, knocking them out into the floor, destroying them.

As we jump and crush the Drow to bits, I looked up to see some Drow sporting jetpacks. Luckily, two purple streak flew through them. One sporting sparkles of magic, one leaving behind digital traces.

They inch closer to our destination as we near a wall of Drow before us. Eventually, our eyes register the two streaks, being Spyro and Neptune, now Purple Heart.

Spyro burned up the wall as the Drow squirm before perishing. Whoever was leftover is slashed up by Purple Heart who swung into the air and dived after each one.

“Keep going!” Purple Heart told us as she flew side by side by us.

“We’ve got your back!” Spyro exclaimed, giving a clawed thumbs up. The two then split up and flew off, leaving me and Sayaka to continue our thing.

Naturally, more and more Drow ran towards us, even more than before.

“Sonic. Let’s play Piggyback.” She commanded.

“Ah. Haven’t done that in a while!” I said before jumping on Sayaka’s shoulders. I put one hand on her head while I pointed my sword forward, glowing yellow now.

Sayaka dropped her swords as they vanish into thin air. She pushes her hands out, shooting out a torrent of water to push the Drow off the dragon. Meanwhile, my sword began to shoot electricity and shocked the remaining Drow into nothingness. We continued our overpowering onslaught through the Drow.

We screeched to a stop as Sayaka leans down. This gives me a clear view to focus my air powers. I push my sword-wielding hand forward, thrusting it and using wind to blow more and more Drow off before Sayaka leaps back into her running state. I shuffled between fire and lighting, decimating Drow while Sayaka washed the remainder off.

We continued speeding up the dragon without a problem, at this rate, we’d be at the temple before no time.

“Wow! This is almost too easy!” Sayaka laughed.

However, before we knew it, we were tackled to the ground. We tumbled onto the scaly surface, now completely defenseless. We turned around to notice an army of massive, buffed up Drow. Then pin us to the floor as my sword disappeared from being disarmed.

“You had to jinx it…!” I groaned.

Sayaka meanwhile managed to move her head towards her pinned down right arm to her DEUS watch.

“…Ugh! We need backup!”

 

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A new, BIG chapter!

CHAPTER 17: FLYING DOWN

Spoiler

On the Dreamcast, immediately once Sonic and Sayaka left, Spyro and Neptune jumped off. The dragon immediately took off while the girl transformed into her HDD form.

This left me with Kyoko, Pop Fizz, Tails, Madoka and Homura. Then, the latter two made their way to another room to man the turrets on the ship’s top and bottom. Pop Fizz, all the while waddled to the seat next to the fox pilot.

“Alright, Pop. Can’t believe I’m saying this, but you have to warn me of incoming threats.” Tails explained. He leaned forward and tapped a radar on the control panel.

Pop Fizz replied, his ears twitching.

“Aye-aye, Fox guy!”

Kyoko folded her arms in response to Pop’s new role.

“Why did you choose him?” She asked.

“Pop, as crazy as he is… his potions can make him very aware of his surroundings.” The fox explained.

Pop Fizz is then seen, chugging away at a glowing blue substance. Her burped before turning to us.

“Yeah, gurl! It’s the only case where drinking while driving is cool!” He laughed before turning to what seemed to be nothingness and pointed ahead.

“Oh yeah, don’t drink and drive kids! I am a trained pro-buuuuuuurp-fessional!”

“Unless you wanna drink too, Nancy Drew.” Tails said while keeping his eyes on the sky.

Kyoko, naturally (and intelligently) chooses to refuse the offer.

“Fair enough point. I’m fine.”

“I figured. Now hang tight, things might get bumpy!” The fox responded before boosting forward.

We could hear mild vibrations coming from the roof and floor of the ship, telling us that Madoka and Homura are firing away.

I looked out the window. I noticed an incoming group of pale green elves on a variety of jetpacks and winged contraptions.

“Drow coming in on the side!” Pop said to a microphone.

“Got them in my sights.” Homura said before the bottom cannon fired a series of rapid-fire lasers straight through the Drow, making them crumble to dust.

All the while, the Dreamcast swerved, dived and rose through the aerial battlefield. I looked down to see Sonic and Sayaka on the tail of the dragon we’re trying to reach. Of course, they’re having a ball, destroying Drow left and right.

Just then, a violet streak obscured my vision as it blazed across the mirror. It sliced through a set of Drow before slowing down. There flew Purple Heart, twirling her sword to show off. Her lips moved, but I couldn’t decipher any of it due to being inside a spaceship.

It’s probably one of those quips heroes like them love to do in battle.

Looking as far down as the window would allow me, I saw Spyro swoop below the Dreamcast, burning up any Drow crawling up the ship.

“Tails, we got more Drow heading directly to the front!” Pop Fizz responded.

“Anyone available?” Tails asked over the intercom.

“Taking care of targets on the right!” Homura replied.

“Same here for the top!” Madoka said.

“Nep! Spyro!” Tails called out.

“Pretty busy right now helping the ground squad!” Spyro said on behalf of him and Purple Heart.

Tails then shrugged as he pulled a lever on the Master System.

“Time for the big guns, then.” He said.

We felt a small vibration at the front as a barrage of missiles spilt out of the ship’s front. There must’ve been some hidden guns somewhere. As to be expected of the Disciples’ trigger happy inventor.

It seemed like everyone’s treating this assault like a cakewalk. We’re seemingly unstoppable.

…No. They’re seemingly unstoppable. There’s no reason why me or Kyoko should be included. We’re not fighting, we’re spectating. The cannons are all manned and there is no sign of a struggle, or need for our help. I turned to Kyoko, who is merely and silently observing the action going on in the outside.

I sighed as I just continued to look outside.

“…You’re not good at hiding your feelings, Makoto.”

I turned around.

“H-Huh?”

“You should’ve figured that I would know that you feel distraught. Yet you told me nothing.” Kyoko replied.

“I’m that obvious, huh?” I asked.

“You always were.”

I looked at her and did a sad smirk.

“So why? Why didn’t you say anything?” Kyoko said.

“I… I figured you would be disappointed.” I replied after a small silence.

Kyoko held my hand gently as I looked down at her glove.

“How so?”

I exhaled. No hiding anything from her. I wiped my nose and decided to let it all out on her.

“I’m the Ultimate Hope, the… well, ex-Headmaster of Hope’s Peak Academy and you know, the person who made this decision to come along on this little journey.” I explained. “I really… thought I could show Kyosuke that not only would I be capable of fighting alongside the Disciples, but show them they could use a little more people to help them.”

“With all this stuff my name has been attached to, I wanted to make it look like I had it under control. One moment, I hoped we’d be called up to do something. But with this being our second fight today, and we’re doing nothing… seeing everyone fight I just wonder…”

“…Wonder, what?” Kyoko asked me, her grip getting slightly tired.

“…What can we do?” I muttered.

“We don’t have powers. We don’t have abilities, weapons… or even proper training.” I sighed. “Maybe this time, for once, I’ve been too hopeful. Can I even be the Ultimate Hope when these superpowered people can do what I can do and mo-“

“Don’t finish that sentence.” Kyoko said. Her free hand reached out and covered my mouth.

My voice was muffled as I tried to object before calming down and going silent. Kyoko then let go and wiped her glove on her jacket.

“I understand. You think I’d be disappointed because your plan isn’t turning out the way you think, and admitting it would let me down. But you know what I’m disappointed in?” She asked.

“So you are disappointed.” I replied.

“Answer the question. Do you know what I’m disappointed in?”

“…N-No.”

“That you’re giving up this easily. This isn’t the Makoto I’ve grown to love. This isn’t the Makoto who… who spat in the name of death itself, after witnessing so much. This isn’t the Makoto who defended the Remnants of Despair despite overwhelming pressure. This isn’t the Makoto who gave sonic the courage to defeat Junko when she had the power of a god. This isn’t the Makoto who helped evacuate people during an apocalypse.”

I raised my hand slightly.

“To be fair…” I said. “I just gave moral support while they did the fighting, and you actually helped the Disciples during that crisis more than I-“

“Let. Me. Finish.” Kyoko said, finger to the lips.

“You still did something. Maybe it wasn’t something as grand as dealing the final blow, but you acted like a hero. You are a hope to our world, and even to the people fighting right now. So thinking for a moment that you’re not worthy of being the Ultimate Hope? Pardon my language, but that’s bullshit and you know it.”

I said nothing at that statement.

“So… please. Have hope. This mission isn’t over yet and maybe you’ll have the chance to maybe do a little more. Okay?”

I blinked for a moment as a tear welled up in my eye. I slowly wiped it away with my fist and nodded.

“O-Okay. I will. I’m sorry… I guess I got a little too negative for once.”

“We’re not perfect, but I’m glad I’m here so you can see the best in yourself again.” Kyoko then leaned forward and pecked me on the cheek. I instantly turned red.

“Y-Yeah. Thank… you.” I managed to choke out.

“I… uh, guess we should enjoy the show, then?” I asked as he beckoned Kyoko to look out the window with me.

Flashing me one of those rare smiles, she nodded.

“Sure.”

We looked out the window together… to see Sonic and Sayaka pinned down. All the while, Spyro and Neptune are seen struggling with a group of Drow tackling them down, barely remaining afloat.

Our eyes widened. What’s going on?!

Just then, the face of a burly Drow, latching onto the Dreamcast covered the window’s view, snarling at us. I instantly reacted by jerking backwards onto Kyoko. We looked at every window in our sights to see more and more of those big Drow crowding the windows.

The gun fire could still be heard, but it’s been faster than before, as if both are in a constant act of desperation. The alarms begin to ring through the ship.

“It’s an all-out assault! I repeat, an all-out assault! Everyone’s pinned!” Tails yelled over the intercom.

“No matter how much we shoot, they’re still coming! Ah! One’s grabbing the turret! I can’t… move it!” Madoka cried.

“S-Same here! We’ve been compromised!” Homura grunted.

“The front guns are disabled! The thrusters are restrained!” Tails exclaimed. “Everyone’s down!”

“…Not everyone.” Kyoko said.

Tails looked back to see the detective stood up.

“…What can we do?” She asked, grabbing my arm and pulling me up.

Tails stared at us for a moment before snapping out of it and attempting to steer the Dreamcast to shake his foes off to no avail.

“T-There’s guns in the back. Use them, I’ll open the doors.” Tails said. He then turned to Pop. “You too. Grab a gun.”

Pop Fizz nodded before hopping off his seat and guiding us to the back, where a metal chest lay in wait.

“Guns… aren’t my thing. I got some potions that’ll do the trick, but you guys? You can go nuts!” The gremlin said before opening up the chest.

Inside was a large staff of weapons from all sorts of the technological spectrum. Standard bullet-shooters, laser guns, and even those with more abstract abilities like a freeze ray.

Nervously, I dug into it randomly and picked up a set of two handheld pistols.

“I’ll, uh, try this!”

Kyoko meanwhile gets out a larger shotgun. It’s futuristic appearance indicating that it must be a laser gun of sorts.

“Wow… that’s pretty extreme, Kyoko.”

“Hm. Might as well try this out. They’re harming our friends… no harm in allowing me to express some anger and deal optimal damage, correct?” She replied with a smirk.

“No! Not at all! Express away!” I said.

“Good. Let’s not hold back if we are to save the others.” She said before locking and loading.

Then, the three of us stand together in front of the door.

“This is it, Makoto. This is the hero work you’ve been looking for.” She said.

I gulped. “Yeah. Let’s prove Kyosuke wrong!”

“Open dem hatches!” Pop Fizz shouted as the door opened.

With the sliding, the Drow began crawling in at the opening. I pointed my pistols and for the first time…

…I pulled the trigger.

POW!

A Drow exploded into dust.

POW! POW!

Two more. I could already feel the Dreamcast getting lighter. We stepped closer as the Drow got nearer. The margin for error slowly diminished, but we can’t falter now!

Kyoko began to let it rip, shooting multiple lasers at any Drow coming from her side. Pop Fizz meanwhile began tossing acid potions at any unfortunate Drow in his way, causing them to dissolve into nothing once coming into contact with the dangerous liquid.

I continued to shoot with as much speed as possible, baffled how small guns like this can hold so many bullets. The wonder of Tails’ tech. As I took down each enemy, I was enveloped in a rush of confidence, knowing this is getting us closer to victory.

My breathing became more erratic, my heart pounded wildly in my chest, I can’t even tell if this is a good or bad thing anymore. But I have to keep going!

The three of us pushed forward until we came face-to-face with the sky. We eliminated so many Drow that we have time to breathe before more start coming to us. Sure enough, their forces are changing tactics as evident from the sound of the top and bottom turrets shooting again. The Drow have let go of Madoka and Homura. This means one thing…

“They’re coming for us now, get ready!” Kyoko said to me.

“They won’t get the chance!” I said, before gulping at what I was about to do. I stuck my head out the door, my face being blasted by turbulence before sticking my hand out. Pop Fizz grabbed my other hand, drinking a potion to become a beast so he had the strength to keep me on board and not lose myself to the wind.

I pointed ahead at the incoming Drow who are clawing on the sides of the Dreamcast towards me. They’re the big burly ones… no way can I just shoot them in one hit. I need a strategy.

I began to stare at their hands. I swore, a lightbulb appeared in my head. I aimed at the hand of the closest Drow and shot it. He let go uncontrollably due to the pain and flew off, even knocking some others off the ship and into the big blue abyss.

I laughed in satisfaction.

I then began to shoot more hands off to shake the Drow off. All the while, I heard the sound of more lasers being shot. I turned around to see Kyoko doing the exact same thing, her arm also being helpd back by Pop Fizz’s free hand.

“You’re doing it, guys! Keep it up!” Tails yelled to us as he begins to regain control of the ship. “Some are letting go of the thrusters!”

The Dreamcast continued to move forward faster, getting closer to Purple Heart and Spyro, who are proceeding to fall thanks to the Drow dogpiling on them.

Noticing this, I aimed away from the incoming Drow for an instance and shot a Drow off Purple Heart. Luckily, that was enough to give Neptune and opening to stick her arm out and spawn her sword, stabbing the rest of the Drow out.

Free, Purple Heart sprouted her digital wings and turned to me.

“My thanks!” She said before flying towards Spyro and slashing the Drow trying to pull the dragon’s wings apart, freeing Spyro who naturally retaliates at the rest of the enemies on him.

I smiled as I turn to shoot off the final Drow. The Dreamcast is officially Drow free.

Pop Fizz pulled me and Kyoko back as we tumble to the floor.

“Phew! You saved our lives there, you guys!” Madoka said over the intercom.

I rubbed my head and looked up.

“Not everyone’s saved yet!” I said. “We gotta head down!”

Tails turned to us and hummed in acknowledgement. The Dreamcast then proceeded to make its way to Sonic and Sayaka…

 

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The next chapter is here!

CHAPTER 18: ALL ACCORDING TO PLAN

Spoiler

We continued to be pinned down by these massive Drow. No matter how much we tried, no matter how much power we could muster, there wasn’t much we can do.

I can’t even summon Oktavia under this much stress.

“Sayaka, we can’t…” Sonic muttered to me before getting his mouth covered by a Drow’s massive hand.

Before any sense of hope was lost however, a barrage of bullets pierced the Drow, obliterating them and freeing us. Sonic gasped for air as he looked up to see his saviors. I directed my attention to what Sonic was looking at to see the Dreamcast descend down upon us with the door open. Standing there, clear as day, holding smoking guns were…

…Makoto and Kyoko?!

“Uh, hi!” Makoto nervously chuckled.

Me and Sonic just looked at him, dumbfounded.

“We’re expecting a Thank You.” Kyoko added with a slight smirk.

Sonic, mouth agape for a while pointed at the detective.

“…Good. You’re quipping. Spoken like a true hero nowadays.” Sonic said back with a smirk.

Zipping by us is Spyro, who whistled to us.

“Cut the banter! We’re not done yet!”

While the skies are cleared, the actual back of the dragon was not. The shrine to the Cloudbreather’s head is just within our reach though, and we can’t let the remaining Drow get in our way!

Getting out our weapons, and with the entire air squad on our side, we charged ahead with guns and elemental blasts blazing.

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

It seemed like no time at all until we were at the homestretch. The Drow stood absolutely no chance against us.

I was especially surprised at Makoto and Kyoko! They had surprisingly good aim. With me jumping up and slicing the final big Drow to oblivion, the stairway to the shrine of the Cloudbreather is clean of evil. As he disappeared though, a walkie talkie appeared from the smoke and dust.

The Dreamcast landed as Makoto and Kyoko hopped out, still holding their guns.

Kyoko leaned down and picked up the device.

“That’s… interesting. Nothing typically came out of these ones.”

Kyoko pressed the button to activate it and proceeded to talk through it.

“Hello? Hello?” She asked.

She waited for a couple seconds, but no response.

“This must be for calling backup.” Kyoko concluded.

“And perhaps we killed that backup on the way over! Haha!” I responded with confidence.

Kyoko put the walkie talkie on the Dreamcast and sighed.

“Still, keep your guard up, Sayaka. There’s no telling of this is a sneak attack or not.” Kyoko warned.

“Relaaax!” Pop Fizz said, hopping out of the ship. “If they come for us, we kick their butts! No biggie!”

Kyoko, withholding any sense of suspicion aside from a tightening grip on her gun shrugged and moved ahead of us.

Makoto, looking back and forth between us then followed Kyoko.

“I’m with her.” Homura said as she followed. “Be ready for an ambush.”

“I think you’re being too paranoid, Transfer Student. If they called for backup, it would be to assist the guys on the front lines, not just wait for them all to die and send in the next wave! That’s… kinda what backup is.” I said to the pessimistic Magical Girl.

“And you expect a band of twisted elves led by a sadistic bear who takes pleasure in the deaths of even her own loved ones to act like a standard military?” Kyoko asked from afar.

“My point exactly.” Homura says back.

“Y-You guys just love to take the fun and ease out of everything, do you?” I pouted before moving forward with the others.

We walked down the shrine, noticing all the oriental detailing across the area. We see some Mabu and fox-people, thanking us as we walk down for saving them from the Drow. Spyro even took it upon himself to do a bit of searching beyond our linear walkway to ensure nobody was hurt. Luckily for us, there were no major casualties.

Eventually, we were met with a group of seven Mabu, standing by the final door. One in a white robe bowed to us while the other six surrounded us.

“Welcome, heroes. Thank you for saving our fair civilization. I take it you would like to speak to the Cloudbreather?” He muttered.

“Um, yes!” Madoka replied. “We… have this book so we can find this kidnapped author! If we can find him, we can stop some evil plans to kill millions!”

The lead Mabu stroked his chin.

“I see… I see. If that is the case…”

The Mabu then threw a white and black sphere on Madoka’s face as it transformed into a helmet resembling Monokuma’s face!

The other six then tossed helmets on the rest of us. Distracted, we dropped our weapons to pull them off, but to no avail.

“Ergh! What is this?!” Spyro growled.

The lead Mabu then tossed a square magnet on the floor, pulling us toward it and locking our heads into a specific location. We were totally helpless.

Madoka and Homura tried to spawn their long range weapons, but before they could open fire, they were immediately disarmed.

“What’s going on?! Who are you?!” I called out desperately, trying to pry the helmets off.

The lead Mabu then began to laugh.

“Puhuhuhu! You should’ve listened to Kyoko, because that walkie talkie was to bring ME in!”

His entire form, as well as the other Mabu began to change, revealing that these were just holograms. The real forms were none other than Monokuma, Kurokuma, and the rest of their cubs.

They laughed in unison.

At the best of my viewing ability, I notice the other Mabu and fox people have vanished, replaced by bigger higher ups of LOSE.

It was a trap, the whole time.

“Well, well, well. Looks like the SkyLOSER, Spyro brought along some friends!” Said a small bald man, draped in a black robe.

“…Kaos!” Spyro spat back.

“Hah! They played right into our fucking trap!” Kurokuma bellowed out in laughter. “We’re the real Trap Team! Am I right?! Someone gimmie five! Right? Riiiight?!”

The annoying black bear raised his hand, but received no reciprocation.

“…Sure, sure, okay.” He muttered, bringing it down.

Walking up towards us is Ronin, the bounty hunter from before.

“So what do we do, huh? Tie ‘em up? Execute them on the spot?” The minifigure asked, pointing his gun.

Monokuma raised his paw, halting him.

“Not just yet, trigger happy. I need something from them.” Monokuma said, snapping his fingers.

Just then, steps then began to approach us as the other LOSE members spread out… for their leader. She loomed over us, wearing a stupidly large outfit almost encompassing her whole body. Her hair, purple. Her eyes, red. All with a blank expression on her face.

“…Been a while, Poker Face.” Sonic said at the sight of her.

Izanami. The goddess of death.

 

 

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A new chapter, y'all!

CHAPTER 19: A TALK WITH LOSE

Spoiler

“I am grateful at the very least that your smirk is concealed behind that helmet, hedgehog.” Izanami, LOSE’s grand leader said to me, remaining as stoic as ever.

“I am in no mood to experience your attitude.”

“I’m in no mood to experience your shit.” I said.

With that, Monokuma pressed a button, causing an electric shock to spread through the helmet. Naturally, it hurts. Badly. My body convulses in response as I let out an uncontrollable growl.

“Don’t make me repeat myself.” Izanami said.

“Hey! Leave him al-GAAAAH!” Sayaka screamed, her attempt to save me in vain as Monokuma activated his electric punishment to my partner.

Both stop as we finally had a chance to breathe, although my anger is piqued the moment I saw Sayaka suffer. No way I’m letting them do that and get away with it.

“Hey, stop i-“

Not a good idea, as evident by the second wave of electric shock that coursed through me. Spent and weakened, me and Sayaka got on our knees, reeling from the pain.

“Are you done, now? This is making me sad.” Ronin said to me.

We just stayed silent.

“Haha! We got them to shut up! Finally!” Kaos laughed.

Spyro, looking up to his archenemy growled. “What do you want to do? Kill us?”

“Monokuma did say he wanted something from us. Spit it out.” Homura said back.

“That I did! That. I. Did.” Monokuma said. “In fact, I’m getting what I need right now!”

“…What?!” Makoto replied.

“You don’t see it, but I’m actually scanning your whoooole bodies with just this helmet! Collecting data on your thoughts, your powers, your internet history, all that jazz!” The bear laughed.

“All thanks to my genius fucking engineering! Yooou’re welcome!” Kurokuma said, leaning over to Izanami, nudging her to get her attention.

“…Please don’t if you want to live.” Izanami said back.

The all black bear held his hands up. “Okay, okay, fucking hell…”

Monotaro tilted his head in confusion.

“Wait, who made those again?” He asked, to no response.

“And what are you using this data for?” Kyoko asked.

“Hahahahaha! You think we’ll tell you?!” Kaos barked back. “Fool!”

“I dunno, you seem like the fool here. Aren’t you the type of guy who would blurt out your plan going ‘I am Kaoooos’ and flaunt about how genius it is?” Spyro grinned back.

That was the last straw for Kaos. He reached out for Monokuma’s devices and presses it, shocking Spyro. His wings vibrate violently in response as he screamed.

“Not this time, SkyLoser!” Kaos said.

Spyro collapsed on the floor, groaning.

The device Kaos had then begins to beep.

“It’s done. We gotta go.” Ronin said. “We can’t lose a minute.”

He then turned to us. He noticed everyone who wasn’t shocked preparing to get up. He reached over and

“Don’t even think about attacking us while we leave, or you’re in for the shock of your lives. Nobody’s getting in between me, and my clients. Alright? Consider your options.” Ronin warned them, hand close to the device.

“So you’re not gonna kill us?” Tails asked.

“No time.” Monokuma said. “We’ll let what we’re gonna do with our data kill you instead! You can run, you can hide, but you’re gonna die! See ya! Puhuhuhuhu!”

Izanami then glared at us.

“The helmets will detach once the remote’s signal is out of range. With that, you are momentarily free until your untimely demise. You either savor your last days alive, or you can go after us. Although by the time you reach us, our plan will be ready and there will be no escape. So either approach brings you the end, so I am not concerned.”

“You’re making Liberators, right?” Kyoko asked.

“…No comment. You can see for yourself if you want. Now, farewell.”

Izanami then walked away, with only some small comments off to the side. I couldn’t make them out well over this helmet although I could swear she was talking about Ragna…

They open up a portal and walk inside before vanishing. Just like that, the vacuum seal on the helmets released as they all fall on the floor. We breathed the fresh air for a moment, recollecting our bearings before trying to figure out what to do next.

“…You know, if someone says they can’t confirm or deny anything, I’m preeeettty sure that means it’s true. So, they’re makin’ Liberators.” Neptune said for reassurance and levity.

We all turned to her.

“I’m just saying!”

 

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The newest chapter has arrived!

CHAPTER 20: IT AIN'T OVER 'TIL IT'S OVER

Spoiler

“Okay, but can we be serious for once?” Homura asked us. “We’re at a severe disadvantage. A position between a rock and a hard place, you could say.”

She puts her hand on her head, still a little shaken from the electricity from earlier.

“What do you mean?” I asked.

Homura turned to me, with the same stoic expression as ever.

“Makoto.” She told me. “We were caught in a trap. If we stay, the hypothetical Liberators with our data will be released to the multiverse and wipe us out. If we go to them, chances are the Liberators will be ready, and we’ll be the first targets.”

Sayaka wagged her finger.

“Uh, Transfer Student, what if we get to where they are fast enough?” She asked.

Homura then directed her attention at Sayaka, disappointed and annoyed.

“Sayaka Miki, if there was a chance that we would arrive on the scene before the Liberators would’ve been completed, they would’ve just executed us on the spot. They expect us to come and die.”

She sighed.

“I hate to say it, but Disciples, we have no choice but to retr-“

Sonic then got up and waved her both of his hands frantically.

“No, no, NO. Nonononono! You were not gonna suggest retreat to the Golden Skylands, are you?!”

Sayaka’s eyes widened and her agape mouth turned into a scowl directed towards the raven-haired Magical Girl.

“H-Homura… you don’t mean that, right?” Madoka asked.

“I meant what I said. This is just going to have to be another multiverse on our list of lost causes, like the ones we lost to the Metarex.” Homura sighed. “This is nothing new for us. We lose battles, sometimes. What we can at least do is keep as many alive as possible, which is us Disciples.”

She folded her arms. I noticed the gem on her hand is glowing a tad darker.

“We’re the only ones who can leave the multiverse. Nobody from LOSE can track us down once we’re outside their reality. There’s nothing else we can do.”

“…Are you a coward?”

I turned around to see Kyoko, sporting a look I could only discern as pure anger. It’s an emotion I barely see from her, and it terrifies me to the core whenever I see it in its intensity. Her purple eyes seared through Homura’s own.

“You’re implying to cut and run, and leave me, Makoto and everyone else on this multiverse to die?!”

Homura didn’t show any bit of hesitation.

“It’s not that I don’t want to. It’s that it’s our only option.”

Kyoko squinted her eyes as a result.

“That’s just like you, isn’t it? Once failure is looming, you decide to ditch everyone and start anew, correct? It’s as simple as twisting that shield, isn’t it?”

She laid her hand on Homura’s shield as the other girl flinches and pulls her arm back.

“I obviously known of your time travelling endeavors to save Madoka, Akemi. It’s like a game to you. Game over. Try again. Isn’t that how it goes?”

Homura stepped forward, provoked.

“How dare you treat what I went through like some sort of game!” She growled.

“Homura! Geez! Calm down, will you? This is getting us nowhere, like, seriously!” Neptune calls out.

Homura only remained quiet, staring at Kyoko intensely. She then looks away, her heavy breathing slowing down.

There, Kyoko smirked.

“You can’t time travel anymore, correct? After your recruitment? Don’t you think that’s a sign? A sign not to run anymore?”

Homura held her shield tightly, as if she was going to twist it, but she knew it would be pointless. She can’t manipulate time anymore, after all.

“I know you just want to keep me, and to a slight extension us safe. But I know you don’t want to let things end like this either.” Madoka said to Homura, placing her hand on her shoulder. “You’re just… scared, right?”

“…D-Don’t put words in my mouth.” Homura said back, more calmly. “But what do you suggest we do, then?”

“At least you’re listening.” Kyoko said.

Then, a silence loomed over us all. We were all hesitant to think of a plan. Even Sonic. He usually is pretty headstrong about moving ahead, but he’s just looking at Sayaka and Tails the whole time. It’s as if he’s wondering about their safety and what would save them.

“…Well, I know one thing. I’m not letting my Skylanders die.” Spyro said.

The dragon turned his head to Sonic.

“You know what I mean, right? Your team is like your family. You need to watch out for all of them. The Skylanders are mine. Right?”

Sonic smiled softly.

“Yeah, and the Disciples are mine. I’ll do anything to protect them.”

Spyro shook his head. “You don’t get it. Not fully.”

“A lot of us have been going through thick and thin together. You and me? We’ve fought together before.” He said, gesturing to himself and the others. “We’re a team.”

Spyro then walked on over to me and Kyoko.

“You helped save our lives. Even if it’s our first mission together, your risked a lot to help us. We’re a team.”

He scratched his head as he further explains.

“We’re all a team. We’re all a family. And because of that…” Spyro then opened his wings to accommodate as much space around us as possible.

“…You’re all Skylanders. And I want to protect all of you, at all costs. Doesn’t matter if you came from different worlds, or have no powers at all. We all have to look out for each other.”

My eyes widened at that revelation.

Sonic smiled at that.

“You’re right.” He turned to everyone. “Running is not an option, guys! We’re heading there!”

Homura said nothing at Sonic’s announcement, but I can tell there was a brief nod in there. Her hand also emitted a small shine, as well.

Sayaka grinned and stepped forward as well.

“That’s right! I can’t just stand here and watch everyone get wiped out! This place, this multiverse? It means so much to me. I’ve met friends, I didn’t even know I could make! Friends outside of the Golden Skylands!”

She rambles on.

“There’s Nightwing, and Jess, Ragna, Amitie and so many more! I can’t let them die! I’d be a total failure of a Disciple if I did!”

Pop Fizz stood up, holding his potion up.

“Alright! Alrighty! I’m totally on board with this, y’all! Just have one teeeeensy-weeeensy question! How will we, hypothetically… NOT die? Hm?”

Suddenly, words started to fly out of my mouth.

“Simple. We fight.” I declared.

Everyone looked at me. Seems like they’re all still not used to me suggesting fighting.

“…Sure, we are most likely going to find those Liberators ready to fight us. Absolutely. But that doesn’t mean we are a hundred percent destined to die!” I said. “Have hope, guys! I may not have experienced so much fighting in my life, but I saw, and heard what you could do!”

I chuckled a bit.

“It’s absurd knowing you’re fictional sometimes, but it’s because that we are, we were able to overcome such challenging odds! Spyro, Sonic, Sayaka… even me! I helped end an apocalypse just be saying… Hope! And I’m going to prevent another one by saying the same thing!”

I took a deep breath and said the one thing I know I’m good at:

“…Hope! There’s always a chance we can take all these guys on, and win! Let’s go in on that belief then dwell on the chance that we can lose!”

In one final move, I raise my fist up in the air.

“Now who’s with me?!”

Everyone raised their hands up in response, even Homura, reluctantly. We’re all in agreement. It doesn’t matter how may odds Monokuma may have against us.

Even if the odds are a hundred to one, as long as that one exists…

…We’re going to get there.

 

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New chapter!

CHAPTER 21: TRACKING THEM DOWN

Spoiler

Emboldened by Makoto’s words, we made our decision. Not a single life is going to be lost by LOSE’s plan. Not on our watch. No matter the odds, we’re taking the risk.

So, we headed to the final end of the Cloudbreather Dragon’s shrine. There, we found a monochrome sheep-shaped device that kept the Cloudbreather in a hypnotic state of non-stop sleep. We could hear his snores vibrating the floor as we see his head sticking out beyond the shrine cradling on his neck. In addition, we see Mabu and fox-people also asleep, probably the Cloudbreather’s real guards.

“Allow me!” I said, leaping up and spawning my sword. With a yell, I slashed through the device, causing it to explode.

Makoto clapped in response. “Thanks, Sayaka! That ought to do it!”

I nodded in response, making my sword disappear again.

After a couple seconds, the sleeping spell began to wear off. More and more of the dragon’s worshippers awaken, groggily standing up, rubbing their eyes and examining their surroundings in confusion.

“Is everyone alright?” Spyro asked, stepping forward to assure their safety.

The dragon is then showered with comments ranging from “what happened” to “thank you, Skylander”. Meanwhile, Tails ran ahead to examine (and probably salvage) the device’s components as me and Sonic loom over the fox.

“Takes one hell of a hypnotic wavelength to knock out a massive dragon the size of a mountain…” Tails commented, looking at a microchip.

“They clearly made that to stall for time.” Sonic said before looking ahead. He heard a loud growl ahead as the shine began to shake somewhat.

“What… happened?” Boomed a mighty voice.

The worshippers sighed in simultaneous relief as the Cloudbreather awakens.

“Cloudbreather! You alright?” Spyro asked, walking towards the end of the shrine as the dragon’s head turns to face us.

“…Spyro? My, has this been the second time you have saved me?” The Cloudbreather asked with a weak chuckle.

“Unfortunately.” Spyro replied with a sympathetic grin.

“And my, my. Are these new Skylanders?”

Makoto looked at the Cloudbreather and chuckled bashfully.

“Well… actually.”

“They are.” Spyro interrupted. “And we’re here to stop Kaos and his goons.”

The Cloudbreather sighed.

“I fear it might be too late…”

“What happened anyway?” Madoka asked. “You’re the only one who could guide people to anyone, right? How did they make you find someone who could help them end the multiverse?”

The Cloudbreather huffed in regret.

“I honestly didn’t know… A Mabu came in with a book and asked me to find Mr. Onk Beakman. I told him where, and the last thing I knew, more Mabu came in with some sort of machine and we all fell asleep.”

“Kurokuma. His holograms fooled him…” Kyoko pointed out.

“And now, they’re off to do who knows what…” The Cloudbreather muttered.

“We can still stop them!” Makoto declares. “Where are they?”

“I can’t locate someone without a possession of theirs…” The Cloudbreather said.

Neptune looked at the pile of broken tech Tails is digging through. Her eyes widened as she ran over to it and grabs out the cracked sheep head.

“Oh! Oh! How about this?!” Neptune asked, hopping in place showing off the ceramic sculpt.

The dragon smiled in response and took a big whiff. Pop Fizz screamed, holding onto the bottles in his bag to ensure they don’t fly into his nostrils.

After smelling the head, he chuckled.

“Heh, heh… well thought out, little one. It appears there may be hope after all.”

The Cloudbreather then breathed out a cloud from his nose, within the fog, the image of an abandoned factory comes into view.

“This here, is an island in the Arkeyan ruins. Beyond their vaults, hidden in a dark pocket of treacherous clouds lies an abandoned factory. This is where our foes are located.” He explained.

Tails looked at the cloud and grinned. “Yeah. The Dreamcast can take it.”

Neptune smiled and hopped once again.

“We got our location, fellas! Let’s give LOSE the ol’ one-two!”

This was it. We found our location, now all we have to do is take the battle to them before it’s too late.

 

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A late night update!

CHAPTER 22: FINAL PREPARATIONS

Spoiler

Getting into the Dreamcast, we begun to discuss our final plans to stop LOSE from overthrowing the multiverse from LOSE.

Time to put these leader skills to work.

“It hit me, Sonic…” Kyoko said to me as we talked from across our seats.

“I believe those Monokubs intended to be caught by me in the first place…”

“How could that be?” I asked, confused.

“Listen. You noticed how LOSE’s intention was to copy your abilities to make an unstoppable army? That can’t happen unless they can lure you into a trap. So that’s what they did.” She explained.

“…She’s right!” Makoto pointed out. “They took AE’s code, and hoped Kyoko would find out! They make their escape into Skylands, and you would follow them far enough to get captured and copied!”

“How would they know we were here, though?” Tails asked. “It’s not like we put flyers that we would have a meeting today, and thus would be the perfect time to break in.”

“However, our meetings are weekly.” Kyoko added. “Considering how long we’ve been fighting, it’s only a matter of time until they know when we meet up. They certainly know where. Our affiliation with Borg Industries has been anything but secretive.”

“Me and Kyoko just came along for the ride. They just wanted you to follow them. They didn’t expect us.” Makoto said to me.

Then it hit me.

He just wanted us.

Not Makoto, not Kyoko.

Just us, The Disciples.

“…And that’s how we’ll win.” Sonic said. “They don’t expect you two to fight back.”

“H-Huh?” Makoto asked, taken off-guard.

“There has to be a machine that will hypothetically generate those Liberators. While we take LOSE down via the Front Lines, you move ahead and destroy the machine!” I explained. “It’s foolproof!”

“That is if they didn’t know those two were with us earlier.” Homura refuted. “They could’ve easily prepared for them.”

“True, Transfer Student…” Sayaka nodded. “Buuuuut, they know Sonic’s overprotective. They wouldn’t expect him to drag you into a full-fledged battle like this.”

“Um, are you really okay with this, Sonic?” Madoka asked.

I felt my hands shake for a moment as the prospect of Makoto and Kyoko getting killed in battle flashed in my mind. The many ways I would cause their deaths… and how it could be avoided if I don’t let them go.

But if I do, there’s no way we’ll survive. They’re prepared for all of us. Once we die, they’re next.

There’s no other choice. I have to defy the shaking. I let them travel with them this far… Just remember that, Sonic…

“I-I am…” I muttered. “They’re our only chance.”

“It’s settled, then. I’ll call on some of my Skylanders to assist.” Spyro said. “We can’t lose at any costs.”

“Then let’s do this…” I said, determined. “Just…”

I turned to Makoto and Kyoko from my seat.

“Bring as much protection as you can. I can’t afford you two getting injured badly.”

“Understood.” Makoto nodded.

“Tails, I need you to circle and scan over the island once we’re close. I need schematics. We need to know the best entry point for Makoto and Kyoko, and where the rest of us can strike.” I tell Tails.

“Got it.” Tails replied.

“Let’s rock and roll!” I finally declared.

With Tails activating the ship, the Dreamcast lifted off the ground. Kicking into overdrive, it flies away from the Cloudbreather Dragon’s shrine. Speeding as fast as it can go, it made its way to the Arkeyan factory where Onk Beakman is held.

Where LOSE’s final plan is being set in motion.

After a couple minutes of soaring through the endless clouds of Skylands, passing islands, airships and floating sheep, we finally received signs that we were close.

As we continue, we noticed islands which were populated with the rusty robotic remains of Arkeyan soldiers of Skylands’ past. They only become more and more frequent as we inch closer to our destination. The clouds got darker, the amount of airships bearing tourists and travelers practically screeched to a halt. None can be seen at all.

It’s nothing short of an Arkeyan graveyard. For any of my robot friends, this must be gruesome in their eyes.

“It’s a good thing none of my robotic Skylanders were brought along here.” Spyro commented, looking out the window.

Well, good thing I’m not the only one thinking that.

“Nearing our destination!” Tails alerted us all. My heart began to pound. This is it.

The Dreamcast veered off once nearing a large island in the distance. It spun around, the cannon on the top acting as a camera, scanning around the island. It covered the large building standing in the middle of it all. From within the Dreamcast, a hologram reconstruction of the island appeared in the middle of the hall from a projector from the top of the roof.

Getting out of my seat while Tails continued to drive, I observed Tails’ capture while the others huddled around. Naturally, Sayaka is next to me, leaning forward to make her own observations.

I noticed a series of red blips at the front, alerting me to signs of life in the area.

“We have potential enemies stationed here. They’re all grouped around.” I pointed out. “We’ll appear in plain sight to them, and they’ll send their troops. Looks like behind them is a door, this is probably where the Liberators are gonna be sent off.”

“Alright, gotcha, gotcha!” Pop Fizz said with a thumbs up.

“Meanwhile…” Sayaka put her hand in front of the hologram and swiped, spinning the image until we see the back of the island, noticing a purple blip for a robotic energy signature.

“Looks like we got a guard in the back, guarding the way in. Makoto, Kyoko, you gotta knock it out and go in. Travel in that factory, find the machine, shut it down.” She said.

“Just to add…” Spyro put his claw up. “My Skylanders are hiding around… here, away from enemy sight for now.” He circles his claw around an area near the front. “We’ll station here and meet up.”

I clasp my hands together.

“Are we clear?!” I called out.

Everyone nodded, vocally agreed or cheered.

“Then let’s end this.”

 

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A new update!

CHAPTER 23: ULTIMATE LUCK

Spoiler

Chapter 23: Ultimate Luck

Descending on a desolate part of the Arkeyan Factory’s island, me and Kyoko are dropped off by a hill side. Tails and Homura walk behind us to direct our next move.

Getting out a pair of technologically advanced binoculars, Tails focused at the rusty factory below us. Passing it over to Kyoko, who put it on, Tails told us the plan once more.

“Alright, we got a ferocious looking Monokuma down there. You guys need to take it out.” Tails told us.

“But we can’t have him alert the others. You gotta snipe it, which is why we’re here.”

Reaching into her shield, Homura got out a three guns. Two being standard shotguns, the kind that can be held in a single hand. The other one, longer and seemingly more powerful. That has to be a sniper rifle.

“Decide amongst yourselves on who uses the rifle. You need to shoot down the Monokuma that way.” The raven-haired Magical Girl says. “We’ll occupy the main forces; you enter the factory and destroy the Liberator production.”

Kyoko then put her hand up as she removes the binoculars.

“One thing, the Liberators were near indestructible, correct? I was there during the Crisis. The only thing that could kill them are the weapons themselves, correct?” She asked.

“Probably. But there is one thing Monokuma got wrong. Alter-Ego’s source code isn’t… exactly a full Liberator. Notice how he could never leave a digital space?” Tails asked. “He’s not optimized for the physical world, so neither are these Elemental Liberators according to my hypothesis. They can hit hard… but they’re fragile. Shouldn’t be too hard as long as you can stop their infinite spawning.”

“…Right.” Kyoko said.

Of course, me being me, I didn’t get the more technical conversation Tails was giving. Luckily, Kyoko always had my back, evident by her leaning to me.

“They’re glass cannons. As long as we can stop their production, victory is ours.”

“Ah…” I said back in understanding.

“But yeah, you guys need to figure out who can take out that Monokuma. Y’all got one shot, so don’t mess up! One wrong move, and the plan’s ruined!” Tails enforced before turning around.

“…No pressure, now!”

“…Yeah, thanks…” I muttered, not intimidated at the slightest. No, sir.

As the Dreamcast lifted off to reach its rendezvous point with Spyro’s team, me and Kyoko discuss who will man the sniper.

“Makoto, I trust you to use it.” She told me.

“Why me? Are you sure about that?” I said in protest.

“Says the person who used guns earlier to take down massive elves.” Kyoko said back.

“The thing is… why me, when you’re there? You have the steadier hands, calmer outlook, you’re the better shot!” Makoto said.

“It’s not like I have the best aim.” Kyoko said. “Besides…”

She then lays the rifle on my lap.

“You’re the Ultimate Lucky Student, aren’t you?”

I held onto the rifle. Pushing my doubt aside once more, I need to do what the Disciples trusted me to take on!

How hard can it be, right? After all, I always imagined shooting down people’s arguments as if they were physical objects.

Setting it up, I put my eye to the scope, lining up the crosshairs to my target: A beast-like Monokuma on all fours. His fur is unkempt, slight foam coming out of his mouth, quivering in its instability. It looks like one of the enemies my sister Komaru had to take down.

I took her advice from one my talks with her…

“Their weak spot is the red eye! I always try to hit that for an instant kill!”

Aiming at the red, jagged eye, I put my hand to the trigger and pushed, firing a single bullet at the Monokuma. I couldn’t bear to look, closing my eyes…

…And hearing an explosion.

Opening my eyes, I put down my rifle to see the ashes that used to be the Monokuma, leaving the back door to the factory open!

“I knew you were the perfect one to do it.” Kyoko smiled as I turned to her.

Blushing, I smiled back.

“Y-Yeah! I did it!”

“Then what are we waiting for? Let’s go.” Kyoko said, running down the hill with me following. Eventually, we arrived at the door. I put my hand to the knob and pulled.

…Yet nothing happened.

“Drat! Locked!” I growled.

Kyoko looked at the doorknob, noticing an important detail.

“There’s no keyhole. It can’t be locked, and there doesn’t seem to be an equivalent locking mechanism nearby.” She explained, looking across the factory wall, only seeing rock and steel walls that comprise the Arkeyan facility.

“Not locked…” I muttered. “Hang on!”

Holding on the knob, I wiggle slightly, pushing upward. With an extra kick, the door flew open.

“Guess the past does come back to you in weird ways.” I said to Kyoko with a small chuckle. Opening that door does remind me all too much of a certain bathroom door from a long time ago…

“I suppose it does.” Kyoko then gestured to me to follow her. We went inside.

This is the point of no return. We’re the only ones who can save the multiverse, the Disciples, Skylanders and us.

…And my gun’s locked and loaded to achieve victory. I have hope. We all do.

 

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A new chapter is here!

CHAPTER 24: CHARGING TO BATTLE

Spoiler

Landing on a hill side opposite to where we dropped Makoto and Kyoko off, and far enough away from the factory’s entrance for Monokuma and the rest of LOSE to see us, we made our way out of the Dreamcast.

Making our steps on the grass, bypassing hints of rusted Arkeyan architecture and robotic body parts, I heard a screech by Madoka.

“Kyaaaaa!”

“Madoka?!” I called out, running to her aid.

“S-Sayaka… you might wanna look at this…” Madoka said to me.

“Huh?” I looked down and recoiled in small shock. Not that it was scary, just surprising…

What appeared to be an entire fried chicken. Steaming, freshly grilled… it looked appetizing, but why? Wouldn’t the food left behind by a race lost thousands of years ago be decomposed by now?

“Hugo… he said Onk Beakman was a penguin, right?” Madoka asked me.

“Y-Yeah, what about i-“

Then it hit me.

“…Oh.”

That wasn’t fried chicken. It was more along the lines of grilled penguin.

“Madoka! Sayaka! What’s going on?” Sonic asked as he ran up, Spyro following suit with the others not far behind.

“We found Beakman.” I said, pointing at the smoking corpse.

Sonic’s eyes widened as he leaned forward.

“Damn, they… they killed him. I guess once he outlived his usefulness, they cooked him up.”

Spyro was grinding his teeth at this point.

“You mean… we’re too late?!” His horns were flaring up. I can tell he hasn’t faced a casualty as a Skylander. At least, not in a while.

“Oh no!” Neptune screamed. “They Uncle Owen’d him!”

Spyro looked at Neptune with a furious expression.

“You think now’s the time for a joke?! Seriously?!” He growled.

“S-Sorry, sorry… that’s just a defense mechanism. I didn’t mean to spit on his grave…!” Neptune said in her defense, sweating.

Spyro’s face became more and more distraught. I had to do something.

“Spyro, this is what they want from you!” I blurted out, getting his attention.

“I’m nooo stranger in being guided to despair. I wouldn’t be here if that didn’t happen! Monokuma wants you to feel that, okay? Why else would he leave that corpse here?” I told him. “He wants you to feel like you failed. Don’t give him that satisfaction.”

Spyro was still breathing heavily, but I still encouraged him.

“Don’t give him what we wants…”

“Right, right. We fail sometimes, yeah…” Spyro muttered.

“Hang on.” Homura then interrupted. “If Monokuma put that corpse there, that means…”

“He’s been expecting us all along!” Tails exclaimed.

Just then, a large voice bellowed from afar.

“SURPRIIIIIIIISE!”

A light then shone on us. As we shielded ourselves from the light, we see the REX once more, piloted by Ronin and Monokuma hanging from the sides.

“About time you joined us!” Ronin chuckled. “They’ve been expectin’ ya.”

“So you decided to follow us, eh? Like out little rotisserie gift?” Monokuma asked. “Boy, you guys are soooo predictable! What’cha did to Hope Dope and Bacon Hands, though?”

“None of your business!” I yelled out.

“D’awww, big words from a little kid!” Monokuma laughed. “Puhuhuhu!”

“Laugh all you want, Monokuma! There’s no way we’re letting your Liberators go out into the rest of the multiverse!” Sonic barked back.

“Too late for that! Our army’s ready, you bastards! Take down as many as you can, you’ll still be overwhelmed! I dare ya! I double dare ya! I triple dog dare y-“

Monokuma’s speech got cut off, though as a laser pierced through one of the REX’s engines.

“Uh-oh! We’re going down!” Ronin says, trying to maintain control. The REX began to spin and spin as it flew down the hill and into a patch of grass down below, but still giving time for Monokuma and Ronin to hop out to the factory.

“O-Okay… Tails, you outdid yourself with that laser, pal! Good on ya!” Pop Fizz congratulated.

“That wasn’t me.” The fox replied before we all turned around in response to the ground now shaking as something approaches.

To our surprise, it was a giant tree monster. It was Tree Rex, one of the Giant Skylanders! Spyro got backup!

The hulking plant leaned down to acknowledge Spyro.

“Call received.” He grinned.

“Thanks, Tree Rex.” Spyro nodded.

Marching behind the giant, more and more creatures of shapes and sizes appear, ready to combat the Liberator forces. It was the Skylanders!

“We’re here, Spyro!” Gill Grunt, the fish-like Gillman with a harpoon gun told the dragon.

“Gill! Thanks, man! You couldn’t have come at a better time!” Spyro got out his wing to “high-five” his close friend.

“Hahahaha! Where’s the targets?! Heeheee! They’re mine, mine, mine!” Trigger Happy, the eccentric gunslingling gremlin eagerly asked.

“Down that hill!” I said, pointing at the factory. “We have two people hoping to stop the creation of these guys! What we gotta do is stall for them!”

“And when all’s said and done, I’m taking the mates responsible to CloudCracker Prison!” The reptilian bow wielder Snap Shot promised.

“Sounds like a plan!” Sonic grinned before getting out his sword.

Spyro then flew up, spewing fire into the air.

“Let’s end this together! Skylanders, to battle!”

With that, we charged down the hill to engage in the fight that will determine the fate of the multiverse as we know it.

 

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New chapter! The end draws ever closer...

CHAPTER 25: THE FINAL BATTLE

Spoiler

The Skylanders made their way down the hill, weapons drawn and elemental powers blazing. With Sonic, Sayaka and Spyro leading the charge.

Looking at the charging army, Izanami uttered a mere chuckle.

“How pathetic. They assembled an army, but they only meet their doom. Monokuma, deploy the barracks.”

“Can you gimmie some time, lady?” Monokuma coughed. “I just survived a friggin jet crash! Gotta check on the machine with the cubs, hold the line will ya?”

The bear ran off.

Ronin meanwhile roared in anger.

“My R.E.X! Again! Can that stupid hedgehog and that stupid girl stay away from my stuff!”

Whipping out his pistols, Ronin takes aim.

“You all are paying me triple for this.”

“If you can fuckin’ survive it.” Kurokuma laughed, digging into his chest cavity for a rocket launcher.

“I mean, I’m totally fine, I’m too awesome to die. But you? I’m not so sure of.”

“That makes both of us.” Ronin said.

“Oh, so I’m riiight?” Kurokuma asked.

“…No.”

Kaos meanwhile snapped his fingers as the factory behind them began to chug. Windows flash as manufacturing of Liberators began. The doors slammed open as the programs already made are sent out to cause some havoc.

They looked like human beings, coated in armor found on Kevin Flynn’s Grid in the world of Tron. In fact, exact copies. Their neon lights blazed with a variety of colors, reflecting their elemental alignment.

Reaching behind all their backs in unison, they draw their weapon, Identity Discs for battle, letting out a mighty battle cry towards the incoming Skylanders.

“Ahhh, disposable armies! Now you know it’s a finale!” Neptune smiled before engulfing herself in light, becoming Purple Heart and drawing her sword.

“Don’t get cocky everyone! Everything’s on our shoulders!” Sonic warned before spinning into a ball and leaping onto the first Liberator.

Slashing its head off, it turned into cubes. Transformium cubes, the substance a Liberator becomes in defeat.

Holding his hand, the hedgehog began to channel the Transformium and thrusted his hand forward. This caused the Transformium to morph into what he imagined it to be, an automatic turret.

The turret began to gun down any Liberator in the way while the eight Giant Skylanders fell next to it, smashing and using their size the crush any Liberator in the way.

Meanwhile, Spyro flew next to Sonic.

“How’d you even do that?” He asked.

“Just imagine what you want it to become and mentally tell it to go!” Sonic told the dragon.

Spyro, stroking his chin dove down to the remains the Giants left behind, closing his eyes as the Transformium swirled around him.

“Heheh! Alright!”

Flapping his wings forward, the Transformium is sent flying, becoming miniature meteors and piercing several Liberators.

Looking at the carnage taking place, Kaos let out a mighty laugh.

“Hah! Hahaha! Two can play at that game, Skylosers!”

Kaos thrusted his own hand forward, controlling the Transformium in front of him to make metallic trolls.

“Go, my minions!”

The trolls lept up, climbing on a set of Fire Skylanders trying to redirect the flames of the smoking R.E.X to the enemy.

Sayaka, seeing the sabotage in play called out to someone while slicing some Liberators apart.

“Transfer Student, light ‘em up!”

Homura looked at where Sayaka’s looking at. She took into account on what’s going on that she reached into her shield for a flamethrower before running into the battle. Pop Fizz joined the fray, shaking up a fiery potion to help the Magical Girl.

The two put their flaming weaponry to use, shooting and throwing at the Trolls, melting them into a grey puddle.

And since the Fire Skylanders are immune to incoming fire attacks, they’re once again free to strike.

“Thanks!” Eruptor called out, commanding his troops, Ignitor, Hot Dog and Torch to control the fire at Izanami.

Before they could, though, gun shots began to fire at them as Ronin struck mercilessly with a vengeance.

“Don’t burn my ship even more, idiots!”

Ignitor went behind the Skylanders and stood backwards so his back shield could reflect the bullets, while Homura covered more ground with her shield.

As Ronin got closer, he is then scooped up by the dragon Cynder and is lifted into the air.

“This ain’t a flight I’m willin’ to take part in!” Ronin quipped, pointing his gun to Cynder’s neck.

“You think?” She asked.

And a singular slice cut through his gun barrel in a flash as Purple Hear flies past them.

“Yeah, you think?” Purple Heart chuckled.

“Yeah, I think very much so.”

The mercenary then materialized a samurai sword into his hand as he swung, catching Cynder off guard as she dropped him.

Meanwhile, the Fire Skylanders began their assault on Izanami as a gush of controlled fire pushed her back. The goddess winces at the impact before looking at the ones responsible.

“Insects, all of you. Looks like I have to get my hands dirty.”

Expelling her coat, revealing her battle gear, an electrical circle forming around her and hovering in mid-air, Izanami loomed over her subjects, still using fire at her.

Preparing to cast a blast of deadly dark magic, an arrow appears and passed through it, dispelling the attack. Izanami turned to see Madoka and Sonic, standing there.

“As I said before, had enough of your shit.” Sonic stated.

“…Hedgehog.” She growled before speeding into Sonic who jumped at shot a burst of Transformium at her before landing and looking at Madoka.

“Give other Skylanders backup, I got this!” Sonic told her.

“G-Got it!” Madoka said, running to a crew of Skylanders being attacked by the Monokubs.

Sonic’s hands set on fire thanks to his sword, his eyes blazing white and stood up against Izanami. The leader of the Disciples, and the leader of LOSE. Face to face at long last.

“Can you wear any less clothes at this point?” He mocked at Izanami’s attire. “At this point, I’d rather see Mephiles.”

“Millions of years old, and still acting like a child.” Izanami pointed out. “Once we annihilate you all, the multiverse is next.”

“And the feeling is mutual. I’d much rather see Ragna the Bloodedge at this point.”

Sonic then got into a fighting pose.

“Well, I’ll tell him you said hi.”

Sonic ran ahead, slamming his sword overhead to hit Izanami, but Izanami countered with her own hand, which didn’t even seem to drop any sort of blood from that strike.

“Is that all you’ve got?” She asked.

“Not even close.” Sonic said as the sword’s lights turned brown, switching to Earth mode as the weight forced Izanami’s hand to go down and remove the sword.

This gave Sonic enough time to do a spin kick in her face. Izanami floated back in recoil before ramming into Sonic and driving him into the ground. The hedgehog began punching her at such a close distance. He rematerializes his sword and began to slash at her.

All the while, Sonic continues to take damage from being dragged across the soil. But in time, Sonic kicked upwards with enough force to kick Izanami back.

Revving up his feet, Sonic sped up and homing attacked Izanami again, and again. The goddess spun around in confusion, trying to register where he would strike next. However, in time, her electric wheel register for her and used lightning struck Sonic down.

“Gah! Cheap move, girl!” Sonic groaned.

“All’s fair in love and war!” Izanami shouted, forming a dark fist and smacked Sonic in the face, kicking with a dark strike and finishing off with another lighting stun.

Sonic however countered that with his sword as it swapped to Lightning mode before trading blows with Izanami.

The two began duking it out, neither willing to give up. Fists flew, weapons clashed and powers were unleashed until Izanami bought enough time for someone else to strike.

“Gkkkh!”

Struck with blue lightning from behind, Sonic’s eyes turned to see Kaos cackling as he has the Sentinel in his grasp.

“Surprised, loser?!” Kaos laughed.

“Farewell, my adversary.” Izanami smiled.

“Come on, come on! Stop smiling and destroy hiiim!” Kaos demanded.

Izanami merely closed her eyes as her own lightning struck Sonic as well, sending him floating in the air. The hedgehog vibrated uncontrollably but eventually grinned.

“Huh?! He’s smiling… WHY are you smiling?!” Kaos laughed.

“Because you’d think I’d ever fight alone.” Sonic weakly stated.

And just then, Kaos is kicked out of the way as Sayaka came to the rescue.

“Hang on, Sonic!” She called out before chucking a sword at Izanami’s lightning, directing it back to her as it holds the blade in place before she stopped.

As Izanami gained her bearings, she saw that Sayaka has already casted her healing spell on Sonic as the two stood with swords drawn.

“You ready for this?” Sonic asked.

“Always.” Sayaka smiled.

Kaos himself also got up as he slammed his fists on the floor, creating watery sharks from the ground.

“Attack them, my DOOM Sharks!”

Izanami did something similar, sending out a black wave of energy from the opposite side.

But Sayaka and Sonic were ready, charging up golden energy in their hands as the blasted away, shooting at the attacks, wiping them out before charging at their foes.

Back in the fight, Tails has constructed himself a minature Transformium battle station, outfitted with automatic guns of all varieties, shooting down Liberators who come close alongside some Tech Skylanders, Drobot and Trigger Happy.

“Heehee! Shoot, shoot! Mine, mine, mine!” Trigger Happy cackled.

“TARGET ELIMINATED. PROCEEDING TO NEXT THREAT.” Drobot declared with every subsequent defeat.

Meanwhile, Kurokuma tried to shoot down parts of the station, reducing it to Transformium, but it’s still very dense to eliminate quickly.

Tails, using his Enerbeam to throw Liberators to the ranged destruction that is his battle station with one hand placed his hand on a communication module with the other.

“Makoto, Kyoko, where are you?” He asked. “These things just don’t stop coming! We need you to shut down that factory!”

The war continued to wage on, but the Skylanders are still outnumbered  as the supply of Liberators are unlimited.

So even though the Skylanders and Disciples may not be losing… they aren’t exactly winning, either.

 

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Been a while, but a new, massive chapter! Hope it was worth the wait!

CHAPTER 26: ULTIMATE LIGHT

Spoiler

“We’re trying our best!” I called out to Tails from the DEUS watch on my wrist given to me. Me and Kyoko are running through the factory, hearing the battle rage from outside the steel and stone walls.

The factory itself is by no means modernized, but one wouldn’t exactly call it primitive. Machinery and shut down robots were abundant, as the place was presumably operated by a race of intelligent beings years ago.

What matters though is making it deep enough into the factory to reach the foundation of the island, and destroy the machine connected to it.

However, Monokumas patrolled the factory inside and out, so if we aren’t running, we’re taking cover to shoot the guards before continuing. I’m still not comfortable with using any weaponry, but with Kyoko by my side, we made do.

She gave me the confidence to keep going, that even someone like me can be a great asset to the team.

“Now I can see why Komaru likes this. Eheh…” I chuckled after landing another successful hit. “Shooting those red eyes are kinda satisfying.”

“I suppose.” Kyoko said, reloading her shotgun. “I wouldn’t say this is fun, but it’s… intriguing.”

“So it is fun!” I replied. “Don’t they mean the same thing, almost?”

Kyoko merely shrugged, almost as a sign of defeat before taking one more shot with a loud bang.

“…This area’s clear. Let’s go.” The detective told me, running out of the pile of rocky debris we were hiding behind to walk down the stairs to the next level.

That is where I felt a wave of heat come to me like a sudden gust of wind.

“Oh… when did it suddenly… get so hot?” I asked, unzipping my hoodie slightly.

Kyoko looked up, pointing out something in the air.

“…Steam.” She observed. “Something’s active, this must be it.”

We looked down at the stairs, peeking through some gaps in the solid railings to see this massive, glowing modern machine: Clearly out of place and recent, so it had to be planted by LOSE. It’s adorned with gears, conveyor belts and screens indicating status reports as these masked humanoids come out.

Their neon linings differ between each other, signifying their elemental alignment before marching into a portal, where the sounds of the fighting outside can be heard. Connected to the machine is a large pipe-looking object, which led to a large hole in the ground that was emitting pure light.

“That must be the Elemental Foundations Hugo was talking about.” Kyoko told me.

Right she was, I even felt it from here. It was nothing but pure, potent energy. In my mind, I could picture everything from the fire of a volcano to the darkest depths of the ocean.

We slowly walked down the stairs as Kyoko explained the plan.

“We only have one shot, if we’re unsuccessful in taking that machine down in one blow, we’re dead.” Kyoko told me. “I’ll go down and investigate the machine; you take cover and prepare to aim at whatever I tell you to. Understood, Makoto?”

“Wait, what if they find you? You’ll be dea-“ I began to raise my voice before Kyoko silenced me.

“I won’t be. Believe in me, okay? We still need to have that date this weekend, remember?” She smirks.

I blinked for a moment and nodded, before finding cover under a pile of broken down Arkeyan bodies. I saw Kyoko sneak off, taking as much cover as possible to avoid the guards protecting the machine.

…In this case, the Monokubs.

“Okay, move it, move it! We need the Skylanders killed by around… 6 pm tonight, have a celebratory dinner, and then destroy the multiverse. Capeesh?” Monosuke told the others as they marched into the room, holding a massive to-do list that reached the floor… even though it contained only three items.

It must be a means to seem busier and therefore productive than you actually are.

Cling! Cling!

The sound of something small, like a pebble, or a screw bounced across the empty factory, startling the Monokubs.

“Look! Look! I hear something!” Monotaro told everyone. “Let’s all check it out and leave the factory completely unattended!”

“That sounds like a terrible strategy!” Monokid shouted. “Let’s do it!”

All the Monokubs then left the main machine, leaving it open for Kyoko to fully investigate it. However, she still needed to stray from the front, or else she’d be caught in the Liberators’ line of sight as they flooded out of the creation chambers.

Kyoko’s head then appeared from the other side and tilted to the side, cueing me to follow before getting on her DEUS.

“Makoto,” She whispered into it. “Get over here. I found a seamline large enough for a bullet to pass through.”

With that news, I quickly made my way down the stairs as carefully as possible. There’s no sign of the Monokubs yet, so that’s a good sign.

Tiptoeing my way to where Kyoko is, she showed me the target. There, a gap between two metallic panels. It’s large enough for me to peek through. So I did, looking into the machne.

From my limited vision, I can see turning gears and Elemental energy seeping through a couple translucent pipes. Kyoko’s voice then whispered into my ear.

“If you could aim between those two large gears in the middle, it could jam the whole thing.” She told me.

“G-Got it.” I said. I then whipped out my shotgun and pointed it between the paneling. I stopped, though. I tried to compose myself. This has to work, this needs to work…

“Alright, you can do this. Everyone’s counting on y- UGH!” Kyoko groaned, between dragged to the side and hitting the ground with a thud.

This immediately triggered me to turn around.

“Kyoko!”

But who’s behind me wasn’t my girlfriend. No…

…It was Monokuma.

“Oh, Makoto, honey! Gimmie a smooch!” He laughed, before backhanding me with immense strength, knocking me into Kyoko.

“Oh, come on! I’m face to face with the two people who practically carried my trials back in the day! You didn’t think this was a set up? My, my… working at a desk must’ve made you go rusty!” Monokuma continued to mock.

“Huh…?! How did you know we were here?!” I gasped, struggling to get up.

“Oh come on, Sonic is so crap at lying!” Monokuma explained. “There’s no way people as relentless as you would just… get left behind! I knew you would try to take us out from the inside, so I planted some bait!”

He then pointed at the machine.

“I tore off a part of the machine and placed it with intentionally small panels! And you fell for it hook, line and sinker!”

Kyoko then got up. “Impossible… How could I have been so blind?” She panted.

“Oh, you feelin’ despair?” Monokuma asked in a mocking voice. “Good! About time you feel that!”

His claws then extended.

“…I’ve waited for far too long to kill you two! To give you the punishment, the execution y’all deserve! Put up your guns, Naegi, this is the final showdown!”

“Trap all you want, Monokuma… but I’m not giving up!” I managed to choke out on impulse. Guess when facing off against Junko, I seem to get my groove back.

I proceeded to pull out my gun and began to shoot. Monokuma countered by reflecting each bullet with his claws, but one managed to scrape his arm.

“Lucky shot.” He growled.

He then lunged forward at me to strike, but that’s when Kyoko delivered a kick to his stomach and sent Monokuma flying.

Kyoko then stood up from her kick, dusting herself off, retrieving her rifle.

“Whoa, uh… when did you learn how to do that?” I asked.

“As a detective, you have to prepare for criminals trying to impede your investigations, even physically. It’s basic martial arts, but it’s effective.” She told me with a small smile. “Come on, if we beat him, we can still stop that machine.”

Monokuma meanwhile got up and looked at the Liberators marching.

“What are you waiting for?! Get them!” He told the soldiers, but with no response. Their eyes are on the prize on what they were programmed for: Going into a portal and destroy the multiverse. No time for anything else, it seems.

Monokuma shook his head. “We’re gonna need to friggin’ patch these guys!”

The bear then began to run to us, bullets flying from us, desperate to impede his progress. But even when they hit him, it doesn’t stop him from running forward.

We then collide. Guns firing, and fists flying. I managed to deliver a punch to the bear’s cheek, who in return punched me back. It bruised slightly, but I can’t let it stop me.

My world, all of our worlds are at stake! Kyoko delivered a couple knee strikes to him, and overtime, Monokuma adapted, ducking when those attacks came. He then followed up with a scratch to Kyoko’s leg.

“Ghk!” Kyoko sputtered out as drops of blood began to leak onto the floor.

“No!” I shouted in retaliation, shooting Monokuma in the knee, causing stuffing to pop out.

Monokuma looked at me, growled and delivered a palm strike to my gut and jumped into it, pushing me back.

As I flew, though, I delivered a flurry of bullets, using all of my ammo without even knowing it. This put a couple holes into Monokuma as he stumbled.

“Kyoko…” I told her as I kept myself standing. “You okay?”

“Just a couple scratches…” She said. “Don’t worry… this won’t be like last time.”

My eyes then opened as I looked back on the last time Kyoko was in danger. The Future Foundation Killing Game… She put her life on the line for me.

The traumatizing sight still haunted me from time to time, seeing her on the floor, eye bleeding and the half of her skin dark and cold…

…And how only by a miracle she survived that.

“Yeah, it won’t.” I told her. “I swear it.”

We then stood up to see Monokuma preparing another attack.

“I hope you aren’t bettin’ on that…”

The bear jumped up, preparing to land another strike. Kyoko prepares to charge up another kick, and I decided to reply with a punch. We thrust forward at the bear, I closed my eyes…

SHING!

I opened them to see his claws pierce through flesh. Pink blood splattered across his gunmetal claws.

“Ugh!” I muttered out somehow. I felt nothing but a numbness, yet when I looked down… I saw his claws piercing my stomach. His paw then moved forward, the claws full sheathing themselves into my body.

Once things finally registered, I was filled with a stinging pain like no other…

…He’s killing me.

“Whoops! Aimed for her instead! But… beggars can’t be choosers!”

Monokuma then pulled his claws out as I got on my knees and keeled over. I couldn’t believe it as my vision started to fade. Now Kyoko’s left… and she can’t last long…

“Makoto! Makoto!!” Kyoko yelled out to me, shaking my body. “Are you okay? Come on, get up!”

I never saw her in such panic. I needed to say something… I don’t know… Everything feels hazy.

“…I’m… sorry…”

Kyoko stared at me, eyes widened before turning to Monokuma. She then ran ahead, yelling in anger. The emotional mask has cracked as Monokuma laughed.

It’s as if he expected this all along. Grunting, punching, kicking, slashing, these faint noises echoed in my ears for minutes on end as I began to lose more and more blood.

Eventually, Kyoko fell down next to me. She doesn’t seem to be dying… but is too weak to fight anymore.

“No… I’m… sorry…” Kyoko told me.

We then began to be dragged somewhere by our legs. I could tell that was Monokuma by his final rant.

“Oh, that tasted so good!” He laughed. “If I could rewind time, I’d relive this moment over, and over again!”

“It’s only a matter of time until this machine pumps out enough Liberators to overthrow your friends! It’s a shame you won’t live to see that, though!”

He then forced us to sit up. I held my hands over my wound to delay the inevitable as we looked at where he took us.

In front of me and Kyoko was the glowing hole of pure Elemental energy.

“Now, I wonder what would happen if I dunk ya here? Engulfed by fire? Drowned in water? Buried by earth? Consumed by darkness? It’s like a lottery of death!” Monokuma asked. “And you two just won your tickets!”

He waddled behind us and laughed his signature laugh. “Puhuhu! Ah, what the hell? Once more, for all time’s sake!”

He cleared his throat as we helplessly stared into the abyss. Kyoko took out her bloody hand, leaving it open for me to grab it. My hand leaves my open wound to grip it tightly. I felt warmth.

The gloves were off…

“Now, I prepared a very special punishment for the Ultimate Hope, Makoto Naegi AND the Ultimate Detective, Kyoko Kirigiri!”

I gripped it tighter…

“Let’s give it everything we’ve got! IIIIIT’S PUNISHMENT TIIIIME!”

And with a strong push, we were engulfed by light.

……

………….

When I awoke, we were floating in a white and black abyss. The two colors swirled around in harmony as they made up the empty scene. I looked at myself. I still looked horribly worse for wear, but for whatever reason I felt normal.

Kyoko was the same… but she was curled up in a ball as she floated. She was trembling.

“Kyoko!” I called out, floating to her. “Kyoko… are you okay?”

“…We couldn’t do it…” She muttered to me. “Because of a single oversight… an obvious oversight… we lost.”

“Kyoko…”

“The entire multiverse will perish… and it’s all my fault…” Kyoko sobbed. She’s crying.

For once in my life… I saw her cry.

“Kyoko… don’t put this on yourself.” I told her. “I should’ve been better at fighting, I should’ve shot without hesitating… I should’ve…”

Kyoko then turned to me.

“I… suppose we’re both to blame.” She said, wiping her tears as we floated in this empty void together.

“I guess so.” I said, nodding.

We said nothing for the past few minutes, coming to peace with our defeat… until I spoke up.

“I thought Monokuma said this would be non-stop torture.” I pointed out.

“…He did saw it was a lottery as to what would happen. Guess we fell into the safest option.” Kyoko told us.

“Luck strikes again, huh? At least we got each other.” I told her.

“Mhm… yeah…” Kyoko responded with a forlorn sigh.

I replied with a sigh of my own as I looked to the sky, at how the light and dark mingle. Almost as if the concepts of hope and despair are in harmony, co-existing as a single entity.

“Kyoko… if for whatever reason, we did manage to beat Monokuma…” I asked. “Did you think I would’ve been a good hero? B-Be honest.”

“You are already.” Kyoko told me. “I told you already, that you’ve done so much. Even without powers or skills. You saved many lives… and brightened up others.”

“How you speak gives them strength to fight, and your own words gave us strength too… How you see things, how you think… that’s your real superpower.”

She then floated up to me, cupped my cheeks with her hand.

“And I’m glad I was able to see that to the end. I love you, Makoto…” She told me as the took me in for a gentle kiss.

I relished that moment. I closed my eyes as we took it in. I felt a warmth build up in my heart, and it spread all around me.

As we separated, Kyoko said one more thing.

“You were more than the Ultimate Hope for me. You were the Ultimate Light of my life.”

The positivity I felt from that was overwhelming. I could still feel warmth surge up within me…

“Makoto…?”

I felt my head getting light, it’s as if the whole world was spinning as the swirling colors moved around.

“Makoto…?!”

She’s right. She was always right. Positivity is a superpower… and I spread it to so many. They needed me. I feel… I feel…

“Makoto!!”

I opened my eyes out of my trance.

“H-Huh?” I asked. “What is it?”

I then looked up. I noticed that the entire place is black. Pitch black. Yet, I can still see Kyoko…

“Uh, look at yourself.” She told me.

Looking down, I noticed my whole body began to emanate that same white that used to be a part of this void.

“You… absorbed it all.” Kyoko told me. “All the light.”

Watching my hands pulse with power, all my wounds began to heal. I felt good as new. No, I felt better than new! I felt like I could do anything!

I noticed the blackness start to disappear too, seeping into Kyoko herself. Her eyes widened in surprise. The entire void became a hot pink as we practically absorbed the Elements themselves.

I was glowing white… she was glowing black. Imbued with the powers of light and darkness.

“H-How?” Kyoko asked, simply.

“I feel… like, our hope… and our despair… and our spirit managed to control the foundations!” I smiled.

“How do you know that?!” Kyoko asked me, still bewildered.

“I don’t know!” I shouted in happiness. “Just a hunch!”

We both looked up to see a glimmering hole above. An exit. Without saying another word, we willed ourselves a means to get out, as light came out of my feet, darkness from Kyoko.

We blasted off at bewildering speed as the power we bear grows on grows. I closed my eyes, ready to expel something special for Monokuma once we come out.

“Junko Enoshima… it’s time for a rematch!”

 

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The battle reaches it's conclusion, but the story isn't over yet...

EPISODE 27: PREVENTING THE BITTERSWEET

Spoiler

As the battle continued to rage on, a rumbling stirred the entire island. All the fighters on both side stumbled slightly as they call regained their bearings.

“What… was that?!” Sayaka asked, groaning as she struggles to get back up.

Facing her was Izanami, who while floating was also able to be stunned by some sort of recoil. She put her hand to her forehead.

“I sense something… terrible.” She states in her usual stoic tone before turning to Sayaka and her hedgehog partner.

“What… did you do?” She then asked, gritting her teeth in clear annoyance.

“Don’t ask me! But judging by that expression of yours, sounds good to us!” Sonic stated.

The rumbling intensified as the entire factory itself began to crack, pieces of the marble roof flying off into the sky and rocketing down as debris proceeds to crush multiple Liberators in their paths.

Some Skylanders needed to move out of the way, dodging the falling pieces of the crumbling building.

Eventually, something flew from a hole in the factory.

“GAAAAAAAAAAAAH!”

Crashing into Izanami, the two tumbling into a nearby tree, once the dust settled the heroes noticed the Monokuma fell onto her.

“Monokuma, you imbecile, what have you wrought?!”

“Don’t blame me! Blame them!”

Monokuma pointed at Sonic as he dusted himself off.

“You!” He growled, unsheathing his claws. “You stinkin’ hedgehog! You ruined everythin’ again!”

“I suppose you found Makoto and Kyoko?” Sonic asked Monokuma, getting his sword ready to strike in case Monokuma were to lunge forward.

“No DUH, I found them! And trust me, you just caused the sappiest, most hopeful idiot to become even… more sappy and hopeful! Blech! And he destroyed the factory!”

“Eh?! What do you mean destroyed the factory? That kid is nothing but a powerless, lowly, human fool!” Kaos ranted.

“I’d retract that first claim if I were you.” Monokuma told Kaos.

Suddenly, a huge burst of white and black completely incinerated the factory, including the machine within and halting all Liberator production.

Purple Heart, Spyro, Madoka and Homura covered their eyes to shield themselves from the bright destruction while Pop Fizz looked onwards in awe…

…Even though he probably shouldn’t.

“Ooooh! Prettyyy! And it also burns my eyes, but prettyyy!”

Once the light faded away, two figures can be seen coming out of the debris, floating out of the debris.

Bathed in a heavenly glow, Makoto was the first to come into full visibility. Subsequently, Kyoko appeared in a dark aura.

Izanami floated back up. She wanted to question Monokuma as to how exactly these two have gotten the power necessary to obliterate an entire Arkeyan factory… but she can sense enough to identify it.

“They absorbed the Elemental Foundations! Kill them!”

Reacting to her command, the remaining Liberators began to charge at the superpowered luckster and detective.

“Skylanders, protect them!” Spyro commanded in retaliation. With that, Spyro and Sonic’s teams both continue the struggle in fighting the swarm of Liberators. However, there’s more enemies than friends at this point.

Makoto turned to Kyoko, removing his neutral expression that of a smiling one.

“Heh… that took a lot out of me.” He chuckled.

“Still, we’re finally turning the tide.” Kyoko stated with a small grin. “Thanks to you.”

Makoto nodded before turning to the large Liberator army. “But we’re not done yet!”

Thrusting forward like a missile, Makoto opened his hand, unleashing a beam of light to decimate a radius of Liberators into nothing but digital particles. Makoto then landed on the grass to proceed with his assault.

He punched a Liberator in the face before whacking a troll with a roundhouse kick.

“Whoa! Makoto!” Madoka shouted in awe. “How’d you learn to do that?”

“I-I don’t know!” Makoto laughed. “But it feels good!”

“Kid’s finally doin’ it!” Tails stated, blasting off a Liberator’s head with a bazooka. “He’s turning the tide!”

The Skylander Stealth Elf, hopping between opponents then landed next to the fox.

“But wasn’t there two of them?” She curiously asked.

“Yeah, where’s Kyoko?” Tails then wondered.

“…I’m right here.”

The two turned around at the sound of Kyoko’s voice to see nothing. Appearing in a puff of smoke a second later though, revealed Kyoko who followed with a mere hair flip.

“Wait, you can turn invisible now?” Tails asked.

“Is this plagiarism?” Stealth Elf pointed out. “She’s stealing my shtick.”

“Less talking, more fighting.” Kyoko told them, harnessing darkness once again to cloak herself as her invisible form knocks out several unsuspecting minions before erupting into a huge dark explosion.

Makoto meanwhile sped back to Sonic and Sayaka as the three stood together.

“Did I keep you waiting?” Makoto smirked, dusting himself off, still crackling with light.

“A bit, but I’m not that impatient.” Sonic told the boy, the two softly fist bumping. “So, what exactly happened over there that turned you into… well… that?”

“I’ll explain later.” Makoto told the Sentinel. “But I think Kyosuke would be uh… quite surprised at what I’ve done here.”

“Probably.” Sayaka said, rolling her shoulders a bit as a stretch.

“But right now, we have an army to finish.”

Makoto adjusted his hood. “Couldn’t agree more! I can’t let any of them do what they did to my world!”

The three looked onwards to see Monokuma face them, claws extended.

“Nope! Nope, nope, nope! I’m not letting you take this chance to finally see you dead, Naegi! You’re gonna be mine!”

He jumped forward at the boy. But Makoto chose to do what he did best.

He pointed his finger.

“No… that’s… WRONG!”

He moved his finger up, essentially finger gunning. Emerging from his fingertips is a Truth Bullet made of light.

Sonic and Sayaka looked at each other and nodded, following up instantly. Sonic pointed his sword forward and shot a golden energy blast to merge with the bullet.

Sayaka joined in with her own blast of inner golden energy to mix together.

With all three attacks combined, they become a powerful ball to hit Monokuma in the chest. This sends the bear flying further and further into the island and into the factory’s burning remains.

Monokuma groaned as he opened his eyes again, noticing how that hurtful flight he endured caused a ton of minions and even leaders such as Ronin and Kaos fallen from the sudden impact.

He then looked up to see Makoto looking down on him.

“You… you happy?” He coughed. “Mister… Pacifist? Look at ‘cha. Remember when I first died?”

Makoto looked down at Monokuma, looking back at the day Junko Enoshima was self-executed.

“Waaahhh…” Monokuma mocked. “You didn’t want anyone to die. Yet look at ‘cha, Superman. You pretty much destroyed an army, and you’re faced with me. You gonna snap my neck? Hand through the chest? How much of the villain do you wanna play today?”

“Junko…” Makoto sighed. “I’m going to destroy your army… but I’m not gonna kill you. Whatever plan you’ll have in the future, though… I’ll stop it. We’ll stop it. As a team.”

“Even now, you’re still ungodly cheesy.” Monokuma growled.

Makoto shrugged it off, looking at the remaining Liberators which has dwindled in size. The Skylanders and the remaining Disciples were having a far more manageable time to beating them. Izanami was even pinned down by Sonic and Sayaka, with a gun pointed at her head thanks to Kyoko. The three look at Makoto with a nod.

“It’s over, Monokuma. It’s ov-AGH!”

Makoto clutches his head, his eyes glowing. He proceeds to stumble and fall.

The same happened to Kyoko, who got on her knees.

“What the hell?! What’s happening to them?!” Sayaka gasped.

Izanami, while pinned and weakened looked at the bluenette.

“You fool. You think an average mortal could handle all that power for long? Without proper inhibitors, your friends will die.” Izanami smiled. “You got too cocky.”

Using electricity, Izanami shocked the hedgehog and girl away, grabbing Kyoko by the throat. Makoto did the same, grabbing Makoto by his neck. The two wait for the both of the to self-destruct.

“Got too hopeful, Naegi.”

A shadow then loomed over the two as the Skylander army faced them.

“…Got too hopeful, Enoshima.” Sonic stated.

Tree Rex throws the other LOSE members and Monokubs in front of them, exhausted and beaten.

“You have five minutes to run.”

Izanami gritted her teeth, knowing they can’t stand a chance anymore. She opened a portal behind all of them.

“Retreat.” She admitted as she let go of Kyoko.

“This ain’t over, Sonic! You have no idea what’s in store for you.” Monokuma proclaimed before dropping Makoto.

“But have fun watching them die!”

LOSE then retreated into the Portal as the Skylanders looked down at the suffering Ultimates.

As Purple Heart turned into Neptune, she watched the two in concern.

“Uhhh… we need to get these guys help. Fast.”

Pop Fizz then hopped off.

“I don’t get it! This whole fight was all epic and stuff… but uh, you think we should’ve done better? Like, we usually end in like a blaaaze of glory or something! This feels anti-climactic.”

“Not always.” Sonic said. “It’s almost like the Liberator Crisis. We win, but it doesn’t always feel like a victory.”

He closed his eyes before opening the once more with determination.

“But not today! Get them to the Dreamcast! We’re heading back to Borg! Sayaka, keep healing those two. Make sure you sustain their bodies enough to contain that power.”

Sonic ran ahead, making a small and hasty salute.

“See you later, guys! Thanks for the help!”

Several Skylanders nod in acknowledgement as the Disciples team ran off, Madoka and Homura carrying Makoto and Kyoko away.

Spyro looked at the others, then back to Sonic. The dragon then flew off to follow…

                                                                       

 

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This is it! After this, one more chapter remains until this story reaches its full conclusion!

CHAPTER 28: THE SKYLANDERS RISE:

Spoiler

“Amazing…” Cyrus said, looking at a set of X-Ray scans on the Future Foundation Conference Room Screens. The Disciples, Spyro and Kyosuke were also present after the arrival of the heroes on another job well done…

…Aside from the suffering Makoto and Kyoko they brought aboard, of course. But it did provide some useful information for the minifigure scientist.

“It’s a complete cellular integration. The Light and Dark energy from those… Elemental Foundations, you call it?”

“Yeah.” Spyro answered.

“Yes, while that energy has completely infused with Makoto and Kyoko’s DNA. It’s almost like artificially creating Elemental Masters we have here in Ninjago.” Cyrus continued to explain before being interrupted by Kyosuke.

“That’s not going to be of much help if those two are about to die from that!” He barked before he turned to Sonic with an accusing point. “When they got on your ship, you should’ve left them behind!”

“I’ll have you know that those two saved our skins multiple times through our little mission, Munakata.” Sonic argued back. “If it weren’t for them, all the multiverse could’ve said goodbye.”

Cyrus made one more comment.

“Besides, our crew should be done with the surgery anytime now. I got some new results right here.” He said, clapping his claws.

This caused the screens, controlled by Alter-Ego to swap to a new tab showcasing the medical information.

“Turns out, what was straining their bodies was excess Elemental Energies, far beyond whatever their bodies can contain. Fire, Water, Undead, Magic, all these energy signatures were carefully extracted.”

“You can do surgery to take out… powers?” Pop Fizz asked, confused.

Everyone knew Cyrus was smart, but was he that smart?

“Oh, it’s easy considering their circumstance. Since their DNA couldn’t possibly absorb that much elemental energy, it just needed an outlet to release into its purest form. Almost like a gas you can suck up with a vacuum.”

Ding!

Whilst he was talking, the door opened, revealing Makoto and Kyoko… alive and well like nothing happened.

“Naegi? Kirigiri?” Kyosuke asked.

“Talk about a hasty recovery!” Neptune snapped her fingers upon seeing the two.

“So? How do you feel?” Cyrus asked them, surprisingly optimistic.

When Makoto looked at Kyoko, he nodded with a small smile before pointing his finger at one of Pop Fizz’s potions on the table. With a motion akin to firing a fun, a bullet of light formed out of his fingertips, hitting the beaker before disappearing. The beaker itself shattered into a green liquid, spilling onto the wooden table.

“Ooof! Yeah, yeah… that’s uh, that’s the acid potion. That table’s definitely gonna look like swiss cheese in a couple minutes.”

Kyosuke was bewildered from the display of superpowers on Makoto’s end. “You… can still control those powers, Naegi?”

“Of course I can! They apparently put a little device in our brains to channel it… and it works wonders! I never felt better!” Makoto smiled. “I… I can fight!”

He bashfully blushed at that statement, looking back. “I-I mean, I could fight without powers… but I could do a lot more, now! We all could!”

“What do you mean by that?” Kyosuke asked, eyebrow raising.

That was when Kyoko got a vial from her pocket, contained inside was a glowing red gas. “This is pure Fire energy. According to scientific analysis, anyone who is infused with it will gain powers to match the Element, as well as their personality to a degree.”

“Fascinating! This is a scientific breakthrough, Kyoko! With these discoveries, we could… give anyone powers!” Cyrus cheered.

“And it could give aspiring villains powers too.” Homura pointed out, curbing the minifig’s optimism. “It’s a double edged sword, Borg. As much as we can expand our forces, so can LOSE.”

Upon hearing that, a gleam appeared in Sonic’s eye. “And we already know that LOSE had bigger plans in store for us… which only means one thing.”

Sayaka grinned at Sonic, nudging him. “Are you thinking what I’m thinking?”

“Oh, I sure am. So… Kyosuke, about my previous proposal…” The hedgehog clasped his hands together.

“You can’t be talking about that now…” Kyosuke groaned. “These discoveries make no difference. Even if you give people powers, who’s to say they’re fully equipped to fight? What about their home worlds?”

“…Leave that to me.”

All attention turned to Spyro, who was standing on the table (at least what wasn’t eaten away by the acid).

“Us Skylanders have the resources to train new heroes, and Skylands is already a place full of different threats, terrain and stuff. If we can provide the Disciples with a means to prepare themselves for the worst of anything… I’m sure they’ll be ready for anything and any world in danger.” He proudly told them.

“So… basically making them all Skylanders?” Tails asked.

Sayaka smiled and nodded. “That ain’t a bad idea, we could have an Academy in the Hub so anyone in the multiverse can join! We’ll take distress calls and dispatch a team to beat the crap outta any villain that comes their way!”

“And if anyone in the Future Foundation wants to join, they could be given one of those vials.” Kyoko shook it. “They’ll be outfitted with superpowers that way. I’m sure the past Remnants of Despair would take great interest in using them to make up for their past mistakes.”

Kyosuke meanwhile was rubbing his temples, thinking over this. He didn’t want to admit it, but if Makoto and Kyoko were the keys to stopping near destruction of the multiverse… it had to be for the best, right?

“…Very well.”

“H-Hang on, what did he just say?” Pop Fizz asked.

“I said very well.” Kyosuke said. “Y-You have a deal.”

He looked up to Makoto and Kyoko. “You’ve proven me wrong once again, you two.” He then turned to Spyro.

“And if you can truly provide the resources to train and protect all who need it… I’ll trust you, dragon. However, the Future Foundation will oversee operations.”

Spyro nodded. “Deal.”

“And I’ll help lead the crew.” Sonic grinned.

“So will I! We’ll make sure all these heroes will be in tip-top shape!” Sayaka proudly declared as well.

Spyro turned to the two Golden Ones. “So… what will they be called?”

“Ooh! How about… Future SkyCiples! It like, mushes all the names together since we’re all workin’ together here!” Neptune proposes.

“How about…” Makoto thought for a moment. “Just… Skylanders? It’s as you said, Spyro. To you, we’re all Skylanders. It should be the same for any hero who joins. We’re all part of the same cause, right?”

“Powers, no powers, we can all do something in the end. We’re all one team. And together, we can change the multiverse.”

“I like the sound of that.” Kyoko nodded, smiling.

And with that, the Future Foundation, the Disciples and Spyro formed a new initiative. To build an Academy to unite the multiverse’s greatest heroes, and save the innocent from the evils who threaten.

The Skylanders of the Multiverse are about to be formed…

 

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The final proper chapter is here! Buuut, there's an epilogue left, and all will be complete!

CHAPTER 29: CONSTRUCTION OF THE FUTURE

Spoiler

Standing in the grassy main village of the Hub, Sayaka and Sonic looked up at what’s being built in the town square: A replica of Spyro’s Skylanders Academy, the perfect training grounds for aspiring heroes from across the multiverse.

“How long until it’s ready?” Sayaka asked as she observed another brick of stone being put into place by one of the Disciples’ Metal Sonic troops.

“Soon. Buzz said it’ll be ready by in a couple months. I already started calling some of our friends to come over and join us.” Sonic said, tapping on his DEUS screen.

“What about Jess? Or Nightwing?” The girl wondered.

“Nothing yet.” Sonic replied.  “Nightwing ain’t exactly the guy to leave his number. And Jess? All I got is voicemail.”

Sayaka folded her arms. Those two were some of her closer friends in the multiverse, and she would love to see them again.

“How about the Future Foundation?”

“Makoto texted back.” The hedgehog reported. “He’s saying that Elemental Transplant is going well, so soon enough we might get a couple new Ultimates coming in.”

“Sweet, sweet. Better hope they’re battle ready, then.”

“But yeah… you ready for this, Sayaka?”

Sayaka exhaled slightly. Being a general is one thing, but taking on this bigger side job is going to add a lot more work into her life.

“…Y-Yeah! I mean, how hard can it be, right?” She replied. A hero’s life never ends, but she assured herself mentally that it’s worth it.

Protecting people was her dream, and with this Academy, she can do far more.

“That’s the spirit, Sayaka.” Sonic grinned. “No matter what comes our way, we’ll take it on together. Besides, with the amount of people we’ll be getting’ on board, how much of a threat is LOSE really gonna pose, right?”

Sonic and Sayaka look onwards, brimming with confidence and hope at a new future, a new age for the multiverse.

No matter what enemy will come their way, no matter the danger, the Skylanders will fight to protect those in need…

…Will you join the cause?

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

Meanwhile, within the center of the multiverse, in its core lies a sea of plastic bricks within a purple void.

The Hub may be the converging point, but it was never the origin as Foundation Prime continues to thrive… and remain the home dimension for LOSE.

“Monokuma. Izanami. What have you to report?” A shadowy figure boomed, sitting on his throne, banging his staff against the floor with an authoritative echo.

“Well… Master,” Izanami began, still having difficulty submitting herself to a being in a higher position than her own in LOSE. “We have received word of a potential threat to our plan to retrieve the Foundation Elements.”

“The Disciples again, I presume?” The cryptic leader asked. “I do have to say that you best be more prepared for them this time. Your little side mission of raising an army to track down the Elements was quite the disappointment.”

“Oh yeah, says the guy who lost to a guy dressed as a buy, some chick with a DJ name and an old man.” Monokuma scoffed, not being afraid to question authority.

The figure leaned forward, light casting above him, revealing a glowing blue minifigure with adorned with an ancient armor and cape: Lord Vortech.

“You dare talk back to me?!”

Vortech raised his hand as bricks formed it into a larger fist, slamming the ground and shaking the very foundations of his throne room.

“…Just sayin’.” Monokuma stated, sweat trickling down his fur.

Vortech retracted his hand as it shrunk back to normal size. “Although I still owe you two my thanks from freeing me from that cursed Time Lord’s Rift Loop, need I remind you that I am the one who holds the key to your freedom?”

“Yeah, yeah. You and your Metarex worshipping and whatever. I don’t really care about your scuffle with the Writers or whatever, I’m just in it to win it at this point. Giving the gods some despair sounds sweet.” Monokuma said.

Monokuma then got out a newspaper, holding it up to Vortech.

“Anyway, you might wanna see this.” He said, pointing at the headline.

SKYLANDERS ACADEMY UNDER CONSTRUCTION, HEROES WANTED

“We got a loooot more than just Disciples to worry about. They’re recruiting more goodie-two-shoes!”

“Interesting… they’re admitting heroes.” Vortech sighed. “No matter… I’ll just get to work on making a spy. I’ve already thought of a couple potential candidates… heheheh…”

He then made a hand motion to shoo the two away.

“Dismissed.”

The door opened, as Izanami and Monokuma walked away and down the brick built bridge to the LOSE barracks.

“Geez, what a grump. Hey, if he fails, like real hard… can I kill him? He talks way too much about his little Writer vendetta.” Monokuma groaned.

“Like you’re that much better with your Despair talk.” Izanami scolded.

“Mmm, what’cha say?” Monokuma asked in a challenging tone. “Who’s the sister of the edgelord here?”

Back in the Throne Room, Vortech stood up, still deciding on a suitable candidate for a Skylander spy. He then turned around and looked up to see what else was in the throne room…

…An hourglass the size of a skyscraper, under construction.

“Mephiles, our true hero… soon, your greatest wish will be accomplished, and I swear… that hedgehog and his little pet girl will not interfere!”

 

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