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June 5, 2020 in Community Showcase
The RPs, Madoka: Separation, all of it leads up to this!
Six years in the making, it's time to see Sayaka rise!
There are two types of realms in existence: The Real, and the Fictional.
And when a force of evil threatens to bring Reality to its knees, only one group can stand in their way: The Disciples, an interdimensional army dedicated to bringing peace for the fictional realm.
For years, they have fought this endless war... but with the arrival of an unlikely chosen one, the war escalates to new heights.
Follow Sayaka Miki as she discovers her true place in the world and become the hero she was written to be.
It's time to rise.
CHAPTER 1: ETERNAL BEGINNINGS
MUSIC: SIS PUELLA MAGICA – PUELLA MAGI MADOKA MAGICA
Clusters of air, bundled in the clear blue sky, travelling across an endless sea of possibilities. They fly suspended in a state of tranquility, looking over the chaos below.
It is in those clouds Magical Girls say… is where the Law of Cycles resides.
The Law of Cycles, the place where all Magical Girls go when their time is up. When their Soul Gem, the source of their magic... and house for their soul darkens with despair, their savior Madoka takes them to a better place.
She is a caring god, protector of the wishes they sold their life for at the sacrifice of her human existence. No more, will girls suffer and become monsters after all they have done.
Instead, they go to the clouds, where only peace remains and their stories finally end as their divine champion lies in her quarters, eyes closed.
Her silky white dress and long pink hair flows in the never-ending starry space, looking over memories of a life long gone.
“Hey, um, am I interrupting anything?” A voice calls out, snapping Madoka out of her meditation. Her golden eyes loses its omnipresent dilation to return to the present moment.
“O-Oh, Sayaka. It’s okay!” She smiles, looking at her childhood friend as her spiritual form materializes.
Her hair is a bright blue, matching her azure eyes. Clad in the white caped knight-esque outfit she wore as a Magical Girl, her face slowly morphs into that of worrisome understanding.
“Thinking about home again, huh?”
Madoka clicks her tongue before letting out a friendly chuckle. “You… can always see through me, can you?”
“Heh.” Sayaka couldn’t help but let out a chuckle, herself. “Of course, I can! You may be god, but I know the real you!”
Playfully, the bluenette pokes Madoka’s cheek, bringing the goddess back to the times where they walk home from school and being teased by the tomboy. “Come on, Sayaka! Stop it!” She laughs, softly slapping Sayaka’s hand away.
Sayaka pulls her arm away, folding it. “So, what are you thinkin’ about? Or was I right on the money?”
“No, no, you’re right.” Madoka confesses. “I was just thinking about Homura again. She cried for me again, today…”
Sayaka lets out a sympathetic huff. “I don’t blame her, honestly, after all the crap she went through to save you…”
Madoka slowly nods, standing up and floating in the black space.
“Do you… regret leaving her behind?”
Madoka glances over to Sayaka, silent for a brief moment in contemplation. “I don’t. I was able to save all of you from becoming Witches, right? We’ll see each other again one day… we both just have to hang on.”
Sayaka nods, letting out a little shrug. “Yeah. Sorry about asking about that.”
She lets a sheepish laugh before Madoka asks her own question.
“What about you?”
Sayaka blinks. “Wuh? Me?”
“Yeah, I mean… You’ve only been here for a while, must be hard… leaving everyone behind.” Madoka clarifies.
MUSIC: DECRETUM – PUELLA MAGI MADOKA MAGICA
Sayaka exhales slowly, grinding her teeth. “D-Don’t worry, I’m fine.”
“Sayaka…” Madoka sighs. “If you could see through me, I can definitely see through you.” Her eyes narrow, determined to get an honest answer.
“You got me there…” Sayaka admits with a small pout. “I just… feel like it’s too soon.”
“Too soon? But…”
“Like, I know, I know. Kyosuke’s playing violin now, and I’m not killing people as a Witch but… Sometimes I think I should’ve done more.” Sayaka shakes her head. “I’ve been a Magical Girl for… what, a month every timeline before I kick the bucket?”
She rubs her forehead in frustration. “I swore I could be a hero… like Mami, and here I am, failing to do that.”
“Sayaka…” Madoka reaches out to grip Sayaka’s hand. “You are a hero, though! You’ve stopped dozens of Witches, and Wraiths!”
Sayaka looks down at the hand behind held by the goddess’ gentle touch. “I really appreciate what you do, Madoka… really, I do.”
“I know you do, Sayaka…” Madoka nods.
“I just wish I had one more chance to do something with my life…” Sayaka sighs. “I feel like… well, an idiot sometimes…”
The two stand in silence together for a while, before Sayaka snaps out of her own self-pity. “O-Oh, right!”
She points to her left, despite there being nothing but stars. “Nagisa made something she wanted you to see. You better check it out, it’s pretty cute.”
Madoka lets out a small giggle. “Alright! I’ll check it out!”
The two dissolve from the starry space into the bright and cloudy afterlife of the Law of Cycles. Standing before them is Nagisa, putting the final touches on something as her back faces the two girls.
“Alright, Nags. We’re here!” Sayaka announces.
“Hang on…! One more touch aaaand!”
The small girl with silver hair and a small poncho-like uniform performs a playful twirl and presents a cloudy construction of a young girl with ribbons holding up her puffy hair.
“Wow, it’s…!” Madoka exclaims.
“A cloudman of you!” Nagisa announces. “Think I got the looks right? It’s a bit harder than making a snowman, but I did it!”
“It looks lovely.” Madoka grins. “Me and Tatsuya used to make snowmen of Mama and Papa all the time…”
Sayaka glances over at Madoka, noticing her tone of voice. She reaches out slightly, before…
The once peaceful light blue sky flickers into a dark grey.
MUSIC: MELODY POND – DOCTOR WHO: SERIES 6
“What’s going on?!” Sayaka shouts, hastily looking around.
“I’ve never seen the sky ever go dark before!” Nagisa gasps.
The three turn around, noticing the clusters of Magical Girls in a panic. They stare at Madoka, asking questions and crying for help.
“I’ve… never seen anything like this before, either…” Madoka bites her lip.
“That’s… not a good sign!” Sayaka exclaims. “Madoka, get the other girls somewhere safe! I’ll take a look around!”
Nagisa tilts her head. “What SAFE place? There’s nothing but clouds here!”
Sayaka however dashes off, following the sky to notice that the further she goes, the darker it gets.
“Sayaka, wait!” Madoka floats after her noble friend. “You need to get back! I’ll figure this out.”
Sayaka slowly shakes her head. “We’ll go together, then.”
The goddess agrees as they venture forth, noticing that the darkness in the sky is gradually giving way for a slight golden glow, getting brighter.
Eventually, the two arrive at the core of the suspicious glow.
“What… are these?” Madoka gasps.
“I have no clue…” Sayaka answers, just as bewildered.
Standing before them are six golden lights, shining so bright they’re obscuring the features of what these objects really are.
Sayaka reaches out to grab it, but only finds her hands passing through the glow, touching nothing. “It doesn’t seem hurtful…”
She steps back, looking at Madoka, who stares at Sayaka. “Sayaka… you…”
“I what?” Sayaka asks before looking down, seeing her whole form glow a faint gold. “Whoa, what?! What’s happening to my soul?”
Six voices echo in her head, speaking her name. “They’re calling out for me…!”
“I don’t hear anything!” Madoka says.
“…YOU ARE THE ONE…”
“I am… the one…?”
The lights start to slowly gather, coming together and spinning. They slowly form a circle as a strong gust of wind suddenly pushes Sayaka forward.
“Sayaka!” Madoka grips onto Sayaka’s arm, trying to keep her in place.
The circle opens up, revealing a glowing blue vortex, amplifying the wind’s strength as it sweeps Sayaka off her feet.
Grunting, Sayaka attempts to grip at the clouds for support, but the cotton-like support melts away as she slides closer to the vortex rapidly. “Madoka! Help!”
“Sayaka, hang on!” Madoka stretches her arm out, trying to grab Sayaka’s desperately flailing hand.
Their hands inch closer and closer to meeting, with both girls’ expressions strained with effort and exhaustion as the wind pulls Sayaka away, and pushes Madoka out.
“I’ll… protect you…!” Madoka gasps.
However, it’s too late. With one final gust of wind, Sayaka is whisked away, speeding away from Madoka and sinks into the vortex’s depths. “MADOKAAAA!”
“SAYAKA, NO!” Madoka yells as her friend disappears into the darkness. She rushes towards the circle in an attempt to dive in after the bluenette only to have the portal fade away.
Madoka falls to her knees as the sky returns to its stark blue, mouth agape. “Sayaka…”
MUSIC: BENEATH THE MASK –SPIDER-MAN (PS4)
Meanwhile, Sayaka flies through the flashing blue tunnel. Her screams ceased as her soul falls into slumber. Her glowing soul form flickers as flesh slowly covers it, creating her human body once more. Her Magical Girl outfit dissolves, becoming the Mitakihara School Uniform she wore daily as Sayaka Miki is restored to life.
Eventually, the tunnel opens up and launches Sayaka out, skyrocketing into a grassy field like a missile. Her golden glow covers her new body as she crashes into the dirt.
The dust clears as Sayaka slowly opens her eyes, her glow fading. “Uuugh…”
She lets out a stiff cough, wincing at the taste of dirt in her mouth. “Disgusting…”
Sayaka sits up, frisking herself. “I can taste?!” She stares down, noticing her old getup. “Soul Gem!”
She looks at her hand… No ring. Her eyes dart around, looking for anything shining blue. For an extra precaution out of pure disbelief, she closes her eyes… sensing for her soul…
…Nothing. Her eyes snap open.
“I’m… alive. I’m human…!”
She gets on her feet, wobbling slightly as her legs adjust. She takes her first steps into the grass, observing her surroundings. “Madoka? Nagisa?! Uhh… Joan?! Cleopatra! Anyone?!”
She hears nothing… aside from the faint chirping of birds and cars zooming past a nearby road. Sayaka walks forward, following the road to notice that it leads to a nearby city.
“That doesn’t look like Mitakihara… Where am I?” She thinks to herself.
Eventually after a couple minutes, she comes across a sign leading to the city with a message written on it:
WELCOME TO STATION SQUARE!
POPULATION: 2.8 MILLION
“Station… Square…” Sayaka reads, squinting. “That’s English…”
Her eyes widen, coming to a realization regarding her upbringing as a Japanese schoolgirl. “Wait a minute, how can I speak English?!”
Her body flares up again with gold light. “This power… is this why?”
Before she could draw a conclusion, a light shines over Sayaka. She freezes for a moment, looking up.
“What the fu-“
Cars veer away, the drivers screaming in fear at the sight above them.
Casting its shadow across the plains is a massive grey ship hovering in the sky, a glowing hole at the bottom highlighting Sayaka. Slowly, it starts to pick up the girl.
“Hey! Hey! What?!” Sayaka tries to grab the sign to pull her back down, but with no avail. “Not again…!”
Sayaka Miki… A girl born in a cruel and unforgiving world.
A desperate hero, wanting to fight for love and justice… torn apart by her grief and selfishness.
A girl with no place in her world… Destined to die.
But today, destiny will be rewritten, fates will be changed, sides will be taken…
…And her purpose will be found: To be a Disciple.
The next chapter of The Disciples is here!
...Don't worry, things get more lighthearted next chapter.
CHAPTER 2: BROKEN SPIRIT
MUSIC: THE KNIGHT SHIP – TRANSFORMERS: AGE OF EXTINCTION
As she wakes, Sayaka feels cool gusts of wind blowing through her hair. She shivers slightly at the freezing sensation while opening her eyes. All she can see is darkness, with whatever is actually visible obscured by blurriness thanks to her adjusting eyes.
With another groan, Sayaka smacks the side of her head with the palm of her hand which seems to be just enough to snap her vision back to normal.
Greeting Sayaka is a set of steel bars. The girl slowly crawls away from them, her backside meeting against the cold steel wall behind her. She instantly turns around, noticing that every side of her is blocked off.
All she can think about is… why? How? Most importantly, however…
“Who?!” She asks aloud. “Who’s there?! Let me out!”
Sayaka desperately looks to her left, noticing another cell. Sitting there is what appears to a humanoid machine, rusted beyond repair with no signs of activity.
She then turns to her right, hoping for better luck. Instead, she sees a human in dusty white armor… Although human may be a bit generous.
He seems malnourished, his armor greatly outsizing his thin figure.
She hastily grabs the bars to her right, gripping onto them as her head peers through the gap. “Hey…! Wake up!”
Still nothing, Sayaka looks down in discouragement only to see a steel pipe. Grabbing it and reaching out beyond her cage, she pokes the helmeted head of the man…
…Only to see the helmet fall off the body, head included. That was nothing more than a rotting corpse.
“What the f-“ Sayaka gasps, immediately dropping the pipe with a loud CLANG!
“Help! Someone get me outta here!” She cries out.
Almost as if someone is answering the call, a distant door opens up vertically. A very, very large door.
Honestly, it’s more like as if the wall in front of her decided to fly upwards.
Coming out from a now visible hallway are three figures. One rather small, probably half of Sayaka’s size. The second figure being tall and lanky with an oversized hat, and the final…
Sayaka could only gulp at the thought of that thing stepping on her… whatever it is.
“There she is.” The massive figure says. “Picked her up near the entrance of the city.”
“And look at that, she’s awake.”
Sayaka bites her lip, but immediately forces her face to undergo a more angry, annoyed expression. “W-Who are you?!”
The lanky figure walks closer, what little light remains in the room illuminating his features for Sayaka to see.
His skin is blue, his eyes a pupil-less red. Something about his texture… seems off. It’s nothing like Sayaka has ever seen.
Shouldn’t he have black outlines around him…?
Sayaka looks at her hands to compare before pausing.
Wait… Did I always have black outlines? Everyone does where I came from…
She looks back to the field and cars that passed by her not too long before her abduction. Even they had those outlines. It’s almost like he had a completely different…
“…Artstyle…” Sayaka mutters on instinct.
“Hmm… She’s just a child.” The blue man says, his voice synthesized and filtered. “It seems like she’s already awakening to her Fourth Vision.”
He kneels to Sayaka, tipping his hat upwards so she can get a better look at his face. “Hello, girly. Mind giving us your name?”
Sayaka glares at the man, her lips shut.
He chuckles. “Want me to start? Alright, then. My name… is Cad Bane. Now that I shared mine, would you be so kind to tell me yours, little lady?”
“…Sayaka. Sayaka Miki.” She growls back.
Cad lets out a smile, showing off his gruesome yellow teeth. “There we go, now we’re getting to know each other.”
He then steps away, turning to the small creature. “Her name’s Sayaka Miki. I’ll register her in the database and dig up whatever I could find.”
“She’s all yours.”
Letting out a devious chuckle, Cad Bane walks away now armed with the knowledge of Sayaka’s name.
That was enough to get Sayaka mad. “What the hell?! You just wanted to get my name?”
“Feisty one, too.” Cad says to the large robot.
“I like that in a catch, makes things exciting.” The robot chuckles alongside him.
The smallest figure holds out his hand, two immediately growing silent at his gesture. “You’ve done well, Cad and Lockdown. You managed to actually get to her before they could.”
“I’ve prepared the Knight Ship for this very moment, my lord.” The black robot now known as Lockdown replies, his uncanny human-like face lets out a satisfied smirk. “All the years of preparation for her arrival has been worth it.”
“Preparation? My arrival?!” Sayaka blurts out. “C-Can any of you explain why the hell am I here?!”
“Did you take me away from the Law of Cycles?!” She accuses.
“Law of Cycles… never heard of it.” Cad says.
The small figure holds out his hand yet again. “You two, prepare your forces. No more banter, they’ll be here any second.”
The two lackeys salute.
“Yes, sir!” They said in unison, turning and leaving the room. Sayaka could only stare at awe with how easily they obeyed him.
Now there are only two, as Sayaka takes the time to register who’s in front of her, standing outside the cell.
Unlike Cad and Lockdown, outlines highlighted his purple crystalline body which is circular in shape. He resembled a ball with arms and legs. Frankly, he doesn’t appear nearly as threatening as either Cad nor Lockdown.
…Which the fact that they obey him without question only scares her more.
His massive red eyes illuminate the dark, bringing to light his three spines and wizard-like hat almost fused to his body.
“After all these years… you’ve finally come.” The figure says. “And of all the people, all the heroes that could’ve been chosen…”
“…They chose a quivering. Little. Girl.”
His claws make their way to Sayaka’s chin, tilting her up. “Law of Cycles, huh? That makes you sound important, though. Why don’t you tell me about it, Sayaka?”
“…How about you give me your name first, like your little blue friend over there?” Sayaka says through gritted teeth.
His figure’s face darkens. “Attitude. Now it makes a bit more sense. Your hair color should’ve given that away.”
His hand pushes Sayaka arrive, his patience clearly being tested. “You will call me Mephiles. Mephiles… The Dark.”
Sayaka dusts herself off from the shove, noticing that she hit a nerve. “Edgy name there…” She pants. “Should I order you a gothic Lolita dress to go with it?”
“Oh, you’d better work on your material, child.” Mephiles spits back. His hand then grasps the steel bars. “I’ll ask again now, Law of Cycles. Tell me.”
“It’s where Magical Girls go when their Soul Gem is tainted enough with darkness. My friend saves them from death… she’s a god.” Sayaka answers.
“So what, does that make you some kind of angel?” Mephiles asks. “Does that imply you died?”
“…Maybe.” Sayaka slowly responds. “I’ve only been a Magical Girl for a month and…”
Mephiles chuckles even more, evolving into a brief laugh. “Oh, that’s rich! A corpse fell down from the sky to rise again…”
His hand slowly starts to shift, the crystals forming an axe as it peers through the gaps. “That should mean I’ll have no problems killing you again…!”
“You must be a real idiot to die at such a young age. Even for a… Magical Girl, as you so call it.”
Sayaka’s confident leg up on the small sorcerer instantly cracks. “I… I don’t regret what I did…!”
“What you did…” Mephiles says. “Or maybe what you were forced to do, more like?”
Sayaka’s eyebrows furrow. “I-I wasn’t forced to do anything! I made the choice to be a Magical Girl…!”
Mephiles frowns. “That’s what I thought too. That’s what we all thought, our choices were our own.”
“Our failures, our wins, lives saved, lives loss… all hinge on us, yeah? No.”
His voice begins to grumble, his anger rising. “Everything you have ever done up until now has been controlled by an unmerciful god!”
“Madoka wouldn’t…!” Sayaka immediately refutes, before being countered back.
“I’m not talking about your friend, fool!” Mephiles lashes out. “They’ve been controlling her, too!”
Sayaka puts her hands to her chest. What is he even going on about? Is this true, even?
“So let me be straight, and to the point. Join me, and I’ll give you a second chance at life. There’s a great power in you, Sayaka.” Mephiles reasons. “Let us harness it together and take back what is ours!”
“And if I don’t?” Sayaka asks.
“I’ll send you back to the grave where you belonged.” Mephiles bluntly states. “And this time, there will be no god to save you.”
Sayaka looks down, weighing her options… although it didn’t take long to make her choice. “Look, I’ve seen this cliché done over and over again on TV… I don’t know who you are, or what you want from me, but you’re clearly bad!”
“…So that’s a no.”
Mephiles closes his eyes…
“…An expected outcome.”
MUSIC: THE DARK AND ENDLESS DALEK NIGHT – DOCTOR WHO
With a powerful slash, the steel bars fall apart. Sayaka only had precious milliseconds do dodge as Mephiles lunges forward.
With all the adrenaline she could muster, Sayaka rolls on the ground, narrowly missing the hedgehog’s opening assault. Mephiles smashes against the wall before turning around with a menacing growl.
“…I’ll break your spirits. I’ll break your heart. And I’ll break. Your. Bones!”
Desperately, Sayaka gets on her feet and closes her eyes. “Transform…!”
She tries to search within herself for her magical power, to no avail. “No… Why can’t I fight him?!”
“You want to know why?!” Mephiles then spins into Sayaka, knocking her back and her head hitting another cell. “You’re an insignificant character!”
“I’m…!” Sayaka manages to gasp out before having her throat grasped by his hand.
“No! You don’t know what you are, but I bet I do. Only a plot device would die so soon!” Mephiles barks back.
Sayaka squirms before kicking her legs forward, hitting Mephiles in the eyes. However, despite how big they are, they don’t seem to hurt.
Rather, it hurt Sayaka’s feet instead. “Ow…!”
“Do you remember now? Maybe your precious Madoka made you forget! You’re weak! You’re pathetic!” Mephiles growls, punching Sayaka in the face repeatedly. “The weapons surely must’ve made a mistake with you!”
“I…” Sayaka could only choke out, her body violently shaking in desperation with tears in her eyes.
“Say it!” Mephiles shouts, delivering another punch.
“Ugh…! I…” Sayaka whimpers.
“SAY IT!” Mephiles yells, whacking her again.
“I… I’m weak…! I’m an idiot…!” Sayaka gasps out. “I just wanna go home…!”
“NOW DIE!” Mephiles shouts out, raising his reformed axe arm for the final blow.
“AAAAH!” Sayaka screams out, her body glowing a furious gold before bursting in a blinding light covering the entire cell.
Told you it'll be more lighthearted.
CHAPTER 3: DISCIPLES RISING
The steel coated Knight Ship hovers beyond the borders of the city of Station Square, above the forest with a conspicuous crater. Screams and calls for help from the citizens of the neighbouring city litter the streets at the sight of a massive enemy warship.
The ship opens up, bird-like robots release from their confines and soar through the city’s skies, droning across and scouting the perimeter.
“Lord Mephiles is going to execute the girl. Make sure nobody interferes.” Lockdown transmits to the small armada. “Kill all threats on sight.”
“Roger, Roger.” All the Vulture Droids say in unison and compliance.
As they swoop down into the city’s streets and arrive at ground level, their wings point downwards to become a set of legs. Cowering citizens hide for cover behind parked cars and alleyways while the Vulture Droids scan the area.
Minutes pass as no hostilities are found… that is until one Droid looks up to see a spark of light rippling in the sky above.
“Rift activity detected!” A Droid warns.
The ripple starts to grow, forming a blue hole in the clouds. Electricity crackles from the vortex, a high pitched noise echoing across the atmosphere.
Slowly, a giant flying ship comes into view. It’s grey and sleek, with giant turbines holding it up in the air and a long runway on the top: The Helicarrier.
Atop the Helicarrier, a massive door opens at the front as a speaker calls out to the personnel on board.
“Metarex detected! Prepare for battle!”
“Alright, guys! Look sharp, and find whoever fell!” A voice commands, his feet stepping forward as he approaches the open hatch leading to the skies above. “The Metarex may have beaten us to the punch, but we’ll have the last laugh. Got it?”
“Yes, sir!” A group of voices reply.
“In that case… let’s rock and roll!”
MUSIC: FREE – SONIC FREE RIDERS
Running out the door and performing a brief mid-air roll into a skydive, the voice reveals himself in the sunlight.
Clad in only red shoes and gloves is a small blue sphere-like creature with three flowing spines. His eyes are big with green pupils and topped off with a cocky smirk. His appearance is different, but his name? All too familiar.
Sonic The Hedgehog.
One by one, more and more people skydive with Sonic. The hedgehog’s eyes however fixate themselves on the giant warship across town.
“Alright, Disciples! Let’s take out that ship!” Sonic calls out. He then curls up, spinning into a ball as he approaches the ground. With a resounding bump and a short hop, Sonic uncurls and places his palm on the driveway of the bustling cityscape.
He looks up, noticing the swarm of Vulture Droids zooming towards the hedgehog. Two other figures then fall next to him.
One is a woman in a black bodysuit with glowing blue accents, her braided purple locks blowing in the wind with digital wings behind her. With a flip of her hair, she summons a massive violet sword fitting of her form’s name: Purple Heart.
The other is a man clad in white and blue Clone Trooper armor, wearing a helmet concealing his face. He reloads his Blaster.
“Looks like Mephiles brought out the small fry for now, but not for long.” Sonic calls them. “Neptune, you’re with me! Trace, you’ll work with the others to protect the citizens!”
Whipping out his own sword, a large silver blade with a glowing green line brimming with magic across it, Sonic flashes a small grin.
“Yes, let’s move before it’s too late.” Purple Heart, also named Neptune nods.
“It’ll be done, general.” Trace adjusts his helmet, preparing to go.
Sonic gestures to Purple Heart as he runs forward, the goddess flying behind him. Noticing the two rushing towards the Knight Ship, the Vulture Droids swoop down for attack. Sprouting a pair of blasters, laser blasts begin opening fire at the two.
With perfect timing, Sonic and Purple Heart spin their swords at rapid speeds, reflecting the blaster bolts back at the two droids and blowing them up. Veering to the right of the driveway, Sonic jumps atop a parked truck’s hood and then springs off to reach new heights. Stabbing his sword into an unsuspecting Vulture Droid, he then kicks it into oblivion while jumping off.
Holding his hand out, he waves it slightly. Taking the cue, Purple Heart flies ahead and grabs Sonic, the two soaring through the sky for a brief moment before noticing a Vulture Droid aiming at a cowering family. Letting go of the hedgehog, Sonic spins into the Droid just in time, saluting to the saved innocents.
“T-Thank you, Sonic! You really are this city’s hero!” The mother exclaims gratefully.
“Just doin’ our job!” Sonic smirks before running back down the mission path. He zooms past a set of Droids being taken down by more of his team that dropped down with him.
One droid is vaporized by a powerful fireball by none other than Spyro The Dragon, while another is tackled and beaten by Captain Falcon with a flaming Falcon Punch.
“Looking good there, guys!” Sonic calls out as he swiftly passes by.
“Thanks, but you better get moving!” Spyro tells Sonic, pointing ahead. “It’s only a matter of time before they kill
Sonic exhales a bit. “Right, right! Gotta move…!” He rushes forward once again, Neptune trailing behind as well.
He runs up a skyscraper at hypersonic speeds, his feet stopping at an electronic billboard before rebounding off several box-like Micromanagers in the sky, knocking them onto other rooftops.
Meanwhile, Cad Bane peers away from a pair of built in binoculars from the Knight Ship’s cockpit. “They’re making mincemeat of the droids… Faster than I expected. It’s time to bring out the bigger guns.”
“Of course.” Lockdown nods. “Let’s not make them feel too cocky.”
The giant robot then flicks a switch on the main controls, the cockpit flashing blue.
Sonic skids to a halt resuming his dash down the road, Purple Heart landing beside him.
“Here comes the backup.” Purple Heart grimaces.
“No time to worry about them! Let’s keep going, Nep!” Sonic exclaims, his feet already on the move.
A series of beams descend from the sky, landing in a flash revealing robots of all shapes and sizes: Slim Battle Droids, bulky Vehicons and mystical Arkeyans which litter the city.
“Don’t let them get any further!” Cad Bane orders through their heads.
Drawing their respective weapons, they take aim at the growing group of defenders.
Holding his stance, Commander Trace aims his blaster at a Vehicon, firing a Blaster Bolt through the head. “Clear the road!” He commands as a fireball flies across the sky, setting a Battle Droid aflame before being punched into the atmosphere by the Hulk, spare limbs flailing in the wind.
“Hulk HATE twig-robots!”
Flying to his side is a red Ninja, Kai. Letting out a sigh before releasing more fire onto a gathering of enemy machines.
“Is there anything you don’t hate?” He asks.
“Hulk HATE being questioned about his tastes!” He growls back.
Eventually, the fire pushes aside and quickly dissolve before harming any of the surroundings thanks to a powerful gust of wind. Coming out is Sonic, holding a glowing hand out, channeling the air around him.
He leaps up to grab Purple Heart’s hand, lifting him up before dropping him atop a trailer of a flat-nosed red truck. “Here they come, Prime!” Sonic knocks on the trailer’s surface, notifying the robot hidden within.
A compartment in the trailer opens up behind Sonic, a turret emerging from the hatch. As it opens fire at a group of airborne Arkeyan Bombers, Sonic leaps off Optimus to resume his run, slashing at robot after robot.
“Is that the best you got?!” Sonic grins.
Slamming onto the floor, creating a small tremor onto the cracking road, a massive Vehicon imposes itself over Sonic.
“…Guess that’s a no.” Sonic huffs, before snapping his fingers.
Letting out a garbled cry, it lunges forward towards Sonic before suddenly pausing in its tracks.
The Decepticon grunt looks downwards, noticing a blade piercing its stomach. Eventually, it falls to its knees and dissolves to reveal Purple Heart cleaning her sword.
“You okay?” She asks.
“Not a scratch on me. Now come on, we’re almost there!” Sonic smiles.
The duo look to the sky, the ship being nothing more than a few feet away.
“Agreed, let’s g-“
Before Purple Heart could finish, a massive golden explosion goes off near the ship, smoke seeping through the back.
The sound echoes through the city, spreading far and wide in a deafening burst.
“Wha…? Is that?” Purple Heart gasps.
“Yup. They’re still alive and kicking. Let’s make sure it still stays that way!”
The first major battle scene! Writing it is a lot harder than I thought juggling between multiple characters, using what I learned from RPing to pull this scene off.
Hopefully as chapters go on, it'll only get better.
CHAPTER 4: DUEL FOR HER FATE
The Knight Ship sputters, adjusting to the sudden gaping hole in its hull. Smoke tinged with a gold aura flows from the exposed areas like the aftermath of a fireworks show.
“Could one person really have caused all that?” Purple Heart gasps, soaring through the air like a rocket.
“Apparently so! Now pick up the pace!” Sonic exclaims mid-run.
Following the two approaching heroes are the remaining Disciples, catching up after disposing of the remaining threats.
Trace sits atop Optimus Prime’s trailer, cooling his blaster with a swift flick of the arm. His eyes lock with the smoking area of the Knight Ship. His visor zooms in like a camera lens, magnifying the extent of the damage. In his vision, he notices his helmet’s display highlighting a falling figure with a lock-on reticle.
Alarmed, he hastily, places his fingers on a button on the side of his helmet.
At that moment, Sonic’s watch flickers. He whips his wrist out to stare at the hologram forming soundwaves.
“Sir! Someone’s fallen off the ship. I think it’s…”
“Say no more!” Sonic grits his teeth, covering the watch with his palm. He proceeds to push his feet to the limits, taking off like a rocket. In an instant, Sonic goes from being in Station Square’s bustling and chaos riddled streets into the blowing grass below the giant enemy warship.
Sonic’s pupils dart upward, noticing a figure cry for help in free-fall. Without hesitation, Sonic stomps on the ground and his eyes glow a pure white with his green pupils no longer visible. A gust of wind circles around his body, his spines flowing violently as a result.
The wind eventually shoots upward, leaves and blades of grass caught in the ascent. Travelling through the atmosphere, it eventually catches up to the falling girl and ceasing her leadup to a potentially fatal crash.
The body grows slack, drained both physically and emotionally, letting the air gently carry her down. Finally calming, Sonic’s controlled wind lays her down where he can get a good look at this mysterious figure.
Wearing a beige school uniform and now unkempt blue hair, Sayaka Miki slowly breathes in exhaustion.
“…Huh.” Sonic could only comment, looking down at the girl with his eyes restoring to normal. “Welcome to the party, new girl.” He smirks.
“Sonic!” Purple Heart calls out. Turning around, the hedgehog notices the other Disciples arrive on the scene.
Screeching across the grass, Optimus halts to give Trace the chance to hop off the trailer as it opens up. “Are they okay?”
“She.” Sonic points out. “It’s a girl… and yeah, she’s alive.”
Trace steps forward, removing his helmet to get a better look, revealing the same scruffy, stern face of Jango Fett as all Clones, aside from a crescent moon tattoo over his eye. “…She wasn’t what I was expecting.”
“What were you expecting?” Sonic glances at the commander.
“Definitely not a schoolgirl. What were you expecting?” Trace asks.
“Someone at least a bit taller than me. So, she fits the bill.” Sonic lets out a small chuckle.
Purple Heart kneels down, observing the bluenette. “So she’s the Golden One? I can’t believe the day has come…”
“Didn’t think our new leader is gonna be an anime girl in a school uniform, but eh, what do I know?” Iron Man rubs his metallic hands. “Taking orders from a rodent ain’t that bad, after all.”
“Thanks for the compliment?” Sonic shrugs before standing up. “But now’s not the time for chit-chat.”
The four look up at the ship above them. Sonic steps forward and calls out.
“Mephiles, you in there?! Thanks for the special delivery! Mind if I head up there and sign my name on your forms, or what?”
He flaunts his sword as it rematerializes in his hand. “Got the pen right here.”
As Sonic taunts, Sayaka’s eyes slowly flutter open. “Unnh…”
Echoing from the speakers hidden within the Knight Ship, Mephiles’ voice responds.
“Disciples… Sonic… I suspect you’re quite enjoying the new arrival.”
“What can we say?” Sonic shouts back. “We’ve been preparing for this moment for years, now! We wouldn’t miss this for the world!”
“Funny, I was planning to deliver her to you right after I was done.”
“Lemme guess, in a bodybag?” Spyro growls.
“You know me too well.” Mephiles chuckles. “Doesn’t mean I can’t do the deed late now, can I?”
A hatch underneath the ship slowly folds open. “Lockdown! Kill her!”
“What, not coming to finish her off yourself?” Sonic chuckles. “Someone lacks dedication.”
“At least to buy me time… hah… Your new friend caused enough trouble today as is.”
The hatch fully opens up as Lockdown crashes down and loading his massive rifle. “Stay out of the way, or you’ll be targets too!”
“Eyes peeled, Disciples!” Sonic exclaims. “Don’t let him sh-“
MUSIC: SCORPONOK - TRANSFORMERS
“Sonic?” Purple Heart gasps, pointing backwards.
Stumbling to her feet, Sayaka pants with a hand on her knee in exhaustion. “Someone… seriously explain what’s going on!”
“We’ll answer everything you wanna know, but right now get to safety!” Sonic hastily shouts.
“W-Wait! I-“ Sayaka reaches out, however is stopped by a massive bullets hell being set off only a couple feet in front of her. “Gah!”
“You won’t get any answers if you don’t survive, kid! Get down, his scope’s on you!” Iron Man scolds. “Optimus, have her back!”
With a final puff of his smokestacks, the red cab starts to change form. Twisting and turning, the Autobot takes his true form as a robot. Scooping Sayaka up in his massive blue hands, Optimus Prime maintains focus on Lockdown.
“Stay with me, child.” Optimus tells Sayaka looking down at the alarmed girl. “I will protect you at all costs.”
“O-Okay…” Sayaka bites her lip nervously, nodding.
“I’m sure a lot has happened to you, and you’re lost.” He continues to assure in a gentle voice. “Just trust us, and you’ll be safe.”
“I-I don’t know what’s happening…” Sayaka gasps, her hands clutching the red bow above her chest in an attempt to cope. “Am I… really nothing?”
“…What did Mephiles tell you?” Prime asks, his voice growing more irritated at what Mephiles could have done to this young girl.
There wasn’t enough time however as the sound of a loaded gun reaches Optimus’ audio receptors.
“I get to take down a Prime, too. Talk about a jackpot!” Lockdown snarls, rifle facing Optimus’ face. Before he could pull the trigger, though, Lockdown stumbles and kneels to the ground. “Agh!”
Instinctively, Lockdown rubs his back, feeling a dent. His head snaps around to see the Hulk roaring after a successful punch.
“Raaaaah!” Hulk screams at Lockdown. “Hulk HATE Hunter Robot!”
“Think we’ll make it that easy? Think again!” Spyro takes flight, charging up a massive flame burst in front of Lockdown’s face to blind his optics.
Using the barrel of his gun to fan away the flames, the gun swats Spyro away before firing another shot at Optimus.
“Look out!” Sayaka shouts out, causing Prime to duck. As she rides Optimus’ palm, she notices Lockdown staggering. “H-He’s still caught off-guard, someone stop him!”
“You heard her! Hold him down, Bruce!” Sonic calls out.
Stomping in response, Hulk jumps up to strike at Lockdown’s dent yet again with a mighty…
“Ragh?!” Hulk struggles, caught in a plasma net. Floating out of the ship is Cad Bane in his jet boots. “Now, now. Easy there, big boy.”
Purple Heart flies to Hulk’s aid, sword drawn to face the alien hunter. “Same goes for you too, little lady.”
“Same goes for you, bug-face!” Purple Heart lunges forward with a slash, Cad Bane swiftly avoiding with a brief dive before launching upwards and delivering a swift kick to her stomach.
In the brief window of time when his kick connects, Cad has his blaster aimed at Purple Heart’s forehead and fires, sending her flipping in the air with recoil.
Purple Heart yelps in pain, stabilizing her flight and rubbing her head, black smoke covering it. “Ow…” She groans, wiping her face. “Lucky shot.”
Cad takes the time to fire more blaster bolts at the vulnerable CPU. While suffering a couple shots to the arms, grazing against her skin tight bodysuit, Purple Heart manages to spin her sword to reflect the incoming projectile. She inches closer and closer to cad before delivering a glowing slash to send Cad Bane rocketing towards the ground with a resounding smack.
Down but far from out, the two hunters regain their stance to aim at Sayaka. A flurry of bullets and blaster bolts invade the area. Sonic and Purple Heart use their swords to reflect as much as possible with their swords. All the while, Iron Man uses his digital sword to withstand the giant bullet shells of Lockdown’s rifle.
Unfortunately, not everything was accounted for. A couple hit Prime. The bolts leave visible stains on his blue and red paint while three shells hit the shoulder. Sayaka uncontrollably slips out of Optimus’ grasp, falling to the ground and tumbling across the grass.
“No!” Optimus lunges forward and kneels down. His arm slams on the ground, covering Sayaka like a blockade. “I won’t let you!”
His free arm reaches back to retrieve his trusty Ion Blaster. Firing blasts at the two hunters, Optimus endures the pain of the ensuing fire. Lockdown stumbles, bullets piercing his legs as his aim wavers.
Prime did not have to suffer for long. Sonic spins into Lockdown’s hand, the impact causing the rifle to move aside and lose aim. A shell hits a nearby tree instead, blowing it in half.
“Hands off!” Sonic grips onto the giant rifle, his legs dangling in the air.
“Behind you!” Sayaka shouts out, alerting the hedgehog.
Taking note, Sonic jumps to see Cad Bane sweep by in a failed attempt to fly into him.
“Do that spin thing on those boots!”
Sonic does just that, curling up into a ball and performing a Homing Attack against Cad Bane’s heels. While suffering a couple burns, he manages to break his thrusters.
“You pest…!” Cad Bane growls, falling to the ground.
Sonic falls onto Lockdown’s shoulder and salutes to Cad Bane. “Glad to be one, Caddy.”
Lockdown’s head turns to face Sonic, snarling while the cocky little hedgehog lets out a toothy grin. “What’cha looking at?” He sticks his hand out, charging up a powerful blast. His hand flickers gold.
Sayaka gasps, looking at her own hand. Concentrating, her hand glows the same tint. It hits her, that same creature has the same power she suddenly has.
“What does it mean…?” She pants.
Sonic’s fist slams into Lockdown’s cheek, the sheer power being enough to bring the robot down to his knees.
Hopping out of the smoke, Sonic dusts his gloves. “Chalk another win up to me!” He laughs before turning around to face the two fallen enemies.
Cad crawls up to Lockdown, weak and struggling to move. “I don’t get it… We should’ve brought out A-game for this mission.”
“I don’t know… but we have to fall back for now. We’ll get the girl later.” Lockdown whispers, his eyes beginning to flicker.
Sending a signal to the ship, it summons a tractor beam onto the two enemies, beaming them away in an instant.
“Hey! We aren’t done with you…!” Purple Heart barks back, but it is too late. The Knight Ship begins to take off, lifting into the air and through a growing purple portal.
“Leave them.” Sonic holds his hand out, preventing Purple Heart from stepping forward. “They’re out of our hair for now.”
The group turns around to Optimus, who stands aside to reveal Sayaka in awe, still fixated on her glowing hand.
“…Who are you?” Sayaka asks them.
Things slow down a bit as Sayaka gets acquainted with this unlikely group of saviors!
CHAPTER 5: INTRODUCTIONS
“Who… are you?” Sayaka asks, still a bit wobbly from the events in the Knight Ship with her causing a massive explosion and all.
“That’s the same question I’d like to ask you, bud.” Sonic wags his finger.
The small ball-shaped creature steps forward, holding out his gloved hand for a handshake. “Sonic the Hedgehog, at your service.”
Sayaka hesitates a bit before grasping Sonic’s hand, shaking it. “Sayaka… Miki.”
“Well, nice to meet you, Sayaka!” Sonic grins. “I think we’ll get along just fine!”
“So… wait a minute, you’re Sonic, like the game character?” Sayaka squints her eyes before turning to Optimus Prime. “And you’re… Convoy, right?”
“Optimus Prime.” The giant robot corrects her.
Sayaka puts her hand to her head. “This is crazy… Why am I surrounded by a bunch of cartoon characters I watched when I was a kid?”
She eyes back to Sonic. “You don’t even look like the Sonic I know, though. You look more…”
“Ball-like? Missing a torso? Got blue arms? I look like a candy? I get that a lot.” Sonic huffs. “Look, we can explain all this stuff later but-”
Sayaka doesn’t listen, trying to get acquainted with the others. “And… I don’t think I’ve seen you before.”
“I’m a little more obscure. In this form, you may call me Purple Heart…” Purple Heart closes her eyes, glowing. Her form eventually dissolves, revealing in its place is a much younger looking girl.
Her hair is shorter and a light purple, wearing a violet dress and a small white hoodie. “My real name is Neptune! Nice to meetcha, Sayaka!” She gives a playful wave and a contagious smile that eases Sayaka’s nerves.
“Can I finish?” Sonic then says, immediately causing Neptune to step back. She proceeds to make a zipping motion with her mouth. “Thanks.”
“Look, I know you’re confused… and you’re honestly taking things very well, all things considered.” The small hedgehog explains. “What you gotta know, is that you’ve been chosen.”
Sayaka slowly nods in understanding. “Yeah, I remember before I got sucked into some vortex about how I’m the one, or something…”
Sonic lets out a small smirk. “You and me both.”
“Have all of you experienced that?” Sayaka eyes the other Disciples, who don’t respond.
“Nope. It’s just you and me. We’re what’s called Golden Ones.” Sonic holds out his hand, showing off that same golden light used against Lockdown.
Sayaka holds out her own, gold flashing through her hand as well. “Golden Ones…”
“We’re the only two people with this power. A little sliver of creation itself. Pretty neat, huh?” Sonic grins.
“So whatever this power is… was this why I was taken from the Law of Cycles?” Sayaka asks.
Sonic’s eyes shift, portraying confusion. “The Law of Wuh?”
“You know… the Law of Cycles. I assume if you know this stuff, you know what that is, right?” Sayaka explains.
Neptune looks up towards the sky, humming. “Hmmmm…. Hmmmmm!”
HMMMMMM! I think I’m getting something!”
“You do?” Sayaka asks enthusiastically.
“…Uh, nope, nevermind. Was thinking of something else. Totally clueless! Yup!”
Sayaka’s expression darkens. “Nice.” She groans sarcastically. “Look, where I come from… I’m dead. But I was an angel, you can say. I was helping to bring Magical Girls to salvation.”
“And then all of a sudden, I got dragged into this place, my human body’s back, I got this weird gold stuff in me, got my life threatened by a purple version of you,” She gestures to Sonic. “And he goes on telling me I’m… nothing!”
Sayaka bites her lip upon remembering the verbal beating she received.
“What kinda world did she come from?” Iron Man turns to Spyro. “Something tells me she’s got one hell of a story to tell.”
“Just…” Sayaka’s cooler demeanor starts to crack, her frustration and confusion reaching a boiling point. “Where am I?!”
Sonic takes a deep breath. There’s the reaction he was expecting. He clasps his hands together. “Well, here? The city back there? That’s Station Square. You can say it’s my home, and I’m the resident superhero.”
“Whatever world you came from, you’re far, far, far away from it now.” He continues. “How about I show you around? Take a load off, okay?”
Sonic points towards the cityscape. “Come on, team. While we’re at it, let’s make sure this city’s doing alright.”
The group begin to walk away from the forest, Sayaka standing still for a brief moment. She folds her arms, still not exactly feeling like she got the answers she’s looking for.
…Not that standing around would make things any clearer. Accepting that, she follows the hedgehog into this new city, questions flowing through her head.
Why are these fictional characters real? Why is this Sonic so different? What are Golden Ones exactly?
She can’t seem to wrap her mind around it all, but one thing’s for certain.
“…I’m not in Mitakihara anymore now, am I?”
We're back, with the 6th chapter!
CHAPTER 6: WELCOME TO STATION SQUARE
“So… you guys are called Disciples?” Sayaka asks Sonic as the entire group ventures across the grassy fields on their way to Station Square, “That’s your little team, right?”
“Did she just say our team is little?” Iron Man directs his attention to Hulk, and shrugs.
Hulk only lets out a brief huff of disbelief.
“Disciples’ is the name, yup. Surprised you caught that.” Sonic twirls his finger in acknowledgement.
“It’s one of the few things I could hear with all the noise going on back there.” Sayaka grunts smacking her ears with her palm to readjust her eardrums.
“So… who were those guys you were fighting? What’s going on?”
“Who, the big robot, the blue alien dude, or the crystal hedgehog?” Spyro asks.
“All of them.” Sayaka answers.
“Whoaaaa, hit the breaks, Speed RacerMcQueen!” Neptune exclaims, “If we talk about every person in the Metarex, we’ll be here for the next century!”
“Metarex…” Sayaka gasps out, almost in some form of fear.
“The Metarex are an army of the most sinister minds from across creation,” Sonic explains. “Created only to overthrow, destroy and kill.”
“The Disciples are made to counter them at every turn. That’s what this war is all about.”
“Wait, I’m in the middle of a war?!” Sayaka gasps out, “L-Look… I just want to go back to… well, my world, I guess.”
Sonic glances at Sayaka for a moment, where Sayaka looks at him back, confused.
“Can you… send me back?”
“I mean, we could, probably,” Sonic explains, “It’s just that…”
“…Kid, you’ve been given a rare power. We’re the only two with that,” Sonic holds up his fist, making it flash with that familiar golden glow, “You’ve been chosen to lead the Disciples, you know?”
MUSIC: BEHIND THE MASK – SPIDER-MAN (PS4)
“Me? Lead… you guys?” Sayaka says.
“Well, you and I, to be specific,” Sonic steps forward, “With the right training, you’ll be the greatest hero in the realm!”
“Hero…” Sayaka puts her hand to her chest, almost in pain. Her eyes close, hearing not just faint echoes of Mephiles in her head… but her own voice as well, from long, long ago.
“I was stupid… so stupid…”
“Hey… you okay?” Neptune peers over, snapping her fingers to get Sayaka’s attention.
Sayaka’s eyes snap open, returning to reality, “L-Look, I’m flattered… but I’m not the right person for the job.”
“I don’t know why I have this power, but whatever gave me this power is wrong. I lost all of my other powers anyway, I’ll just be holding everyone back.”
“That’s why we’ll train you. You helped us quite a bit during that fight with Lockdown and Cad, and you didn’t even fight. I think you got the potential to be a Commander.” Trace steps up, nodding.
“No, you don’t understand…” Sayaka rubs her arm, “I’m not hero material, every time I tried… I only make things worse.”
“Whatever you Disciples are… I’m not like you.”
All Disciples stay still, all unsure how to handle what Sayaka said. Even the Hulk could only let out the occasional grunt, but nothing more.
“Uh, hey. Doesn’t mean you could be like us, you know… in time.” Neptune finally speaks up.
“Huh…?” Sayaka mutters.
“Look, you see, I-“ Neptune, however immediately stops in her tracks upon seeing the entry back into the city and losing her train of thought, “Ooh! We’re here! Sonic, Sonic, can I get some Chocolate Chipped Cream Sundae Supreme before we go?!”
Her sudden change in tone and subject catches everyone off-guard, a trickle of embarrassed sweat travels down Sonic’s fur, “O-Okay, sure!” He chuckles, “We gotta check on the damages anyway.”
Skipping away, Neptune hastily makes her way to the nearest ice cream stand… hoping it hasn’t been blown up in the previous battle.
“Sorry, we haven’t been here in a while… So Neptune’s eager to explore again.” Sonic tells Sayaka.
“Isn’t this your home, though?” Sayaka asks.
“Yeah, but I guess you can say it used to be.” Sonic says, taking his first few steps into the bustling metropolis of Station Square. Upon arriving, countless news trucks, reporters and cheering bystanders can be seen swarming the area.
“Look, there they are!”
“It’s the Disciples, oh my god!”
“Sonic! Sonic! Over here!”
“Who’s that girl? I’ve never seen her before…”
“Optimus Prime, a word for our loyal viewers?”
“Is that a new Disciple?!”
“Tony Stark, sign my replica Arc Reactor!”
“Could’ve sworn I saw Neptune run off over there!”
Sonic holds up his hands, “Aaaand here they come.”
Suddenly, Sayaka finds herself bombarded with countless cameras and microphones in front of her. Back in Mitakihara, she was hardly popular. She only really had three close friends at school, and people found her a bit weird with her oddly comprehensive knowledge of classical music.
Now here she is, swarmed by an eager public asking for her name.
“Who are you?”
“Where did you come from?”
“What’s your name?”
“What Disciple division are you in?”
“Was that explosion you?”
“Um…!” Sayaka tugs her collar, overwhelmed.
“Alright, alright, quit with the questions! She’s new here, you’re scaring her!” Sonic barks out, shooing the eager reporters away, sending them to question the other Disciples instead.
“You okay there, Sayaka?” The hedgehog asks, tapping her side to get her attention.
Responding to his touch, Sayaka nods. “Yeah, I’m fine… Do you guys deal with this a lot?”
“Mostly in this universe, been protecting this Earth for… about a couple hundred million years now from Mephiles.” Sonic says.
“Mephiles…” Sayaka grits her teeth upon hearing that word, however something else hit her, “Wait, millions of years?”
“Yup. You heard me, millions.” Sonic confirms.
“Man, you must be quite the old geezer, huh?” Sayaka lets out a brief smirk, “Guess you and Mephiles have quite the history… huh?”
“Girl, you have no idea,” Sonic looks over, noticing the paparazzi are occupied with the other Disciples. Just enough time for maybe a quick recap while they go patrolling.
“…Lemme tell you a story.”
The next chapter of The Disciples! Not the most proud of it, getting Sonic's backstory right is something I didn't expect to be as hard as I expected to be, so I have to split this sequence into two parts. Here's Part 1!
THE SENTINELS - PART 1
“Quickly, in here. Nobody visits museums anyway.” Sonic gestures to Sayaka, opening a door towards a large stone building in the middle of city.
“Okay?” Sayaka looks both ways, eyeing for any paparazzi before swiftly entering the Station Square National Museum.
With the door shutting, the receptionist greets Sonic with a polite bow. “Welcome back, Sonic. I see you brought a new face. New Disciple?”
“Uh, hey.” Sayaka nervously waves.
“Here’s hoping, Helen. How’s the boyfriend doing?” Sonic nonchalantly asks.
“Chris? Things are going steady, thanks for asking,” Helen nods, “Please enjoy your stay.”
“Will do!” Sonic salutes, walking by the reception area.
Sayaka inches closer and whispers to Sonic. “Hey, don’t we have to pay?”
“Usually, but saving the world countless times does get you a few awesome perks.” Sonic replies before turning to the right, “This way.”
Sonic steps into a different room of the museum with a massive sign above the door. Sayaka glances upwards, noticing what it says.
With a small exhale, Sayaka walks inside. The first thing she sees is a wooden statue of Sonic in a glass case preserving the carving.
“Pretty neat, huh? Yeah, this was made in the 1800s. Still surprised at how good it still looks. Expected the hand to fall off or something.” Sonic smirks, placing his gloved hand on the glass.
Clearing his throat, Sonic directs Sayaka’s attention to a set of paintings along the walls.
“Aaaanyway, this is what I wanted you to see.”
Sayaka follows the hedgehog to the first painting, showcasing a prestigious watercolor depiction of an island in the middle of the ocean with a castle in the middle. Surrounding the island are pterodactyls, solidifying the fact that despite the architecture, this was indeed a prehistoric time.
“My race was pretty ahead of its time, huh?” Sonic asks, “We made that.”
“No kidding, take away those dinosaurs and I’d think this was during like… the middle ages.” Sayaka points at the castle.
“Yeah. The Sentinels were smart cookies.” Sonic lets out a small, half-hearted smile, “Not saying everything was hunky-dory.”
Sonic grabs Sayaka’s arm, pulling her to the painting. What Sayaka could see is a depiction of the Earth, floating in space. Inside, however are dark red eyes at the core.
“In this world, like… literally inside of this Earth, there’s this demon. He called himself Dark Gaia, he made our race. You can say we’re his children,” Sonic explains. “Made us to be vessels for his endless rage, we were made to always be angry, never stop killing.”
Sayaka glances back at Sonic, shocked. This Sonic person is basically a demon spawn? Can she trust him?
…Then again, he did save her life. He’s got friends, apparently saved this world a lot. And she did turn into a Witch countless times, that’s kind of like being a demon.
Why should she judge?
“Are you the only one who rebelled?” Sayaka asks.
“No, I wasn’t born yet, actually. My entire race rebelled,” Sonic answers, “Funny thing about giving us free will… eventually anger dies out, other emotions come in.”
“Eventually, you’d wanna do something else. Be someone you weren’t intended to be. Our race chose to deny Dark Gaia, use our magical powers and knowledge and jazz to protect the world and watch it grow.”
One pull to another painting later, and Sayaka finds herself face to face with the third painting, showing a group of spherical creatures just like Sonic.
“We called ourselves Sentinels. Some of us were strong with magic, while the other ones were complete tech wizards and invented machines and structures eons ahead of their time.”
Sonic directs Sayaka’s attention to the next piece of art, depicting a fiery landscape. Sentinels armed to the teeth with weapons, glowing with Elemental fury against a legion of snake-like monsters.
“It didn’t mean everything was hunky-dory, though. One day, mutated by Dark Gaia’s essence as revenge for our rebellion, a legion of evil snakes called the Metarex waged war on us. We won, but at a price.”
Sayaka looks down at Sonic, locking eyes with him. “What price?”
“…Some of our soldiers began to become addicted to the war, the killing, the fighting. Especially one general. Can you guess who?”
Sayaka thinks for a moment, her teeth gritted in concentration. It didn’t take long though for her to draw a conclusion, though.
“Mephiles.” She states.
Sonic rubs his gloves together in dread. “Yup… and when the king banished Mephiles for his aggression after the war, he didn’t expect him to come back with some of that extra Dark Gaia juice…”
“And that’s when we all lost.”
The two look at the next painting, the horror fully on display with color and strokes so vivid, it paints its own picture in Sayaka’s mind…
Draft after draft, attempt after attempt to make this chapter somewhat coherent... Maybe this is the one that works?
THE SENTINELS - PART 2
150 MILLION YEARS AGO…
That’s all Sonic could hear grounds shake, purple flickering in the air as the lights go out bit by bit. He could only glance away for a moment to see what’s behind them.
The bricks of the great Sentinel Castle, a monument of his race’s promise to protect the Earth… crumbling at the seams as bursts of purple energy rage from the rooms they passed. The island in which the Sentinel race calls home is falling apart.
The screams echoing across the halls, and outside the castle gates are that of the rallying troops of the Sentinel army, falling one-by-one by a single being clouded with rage.
“Don’t look at the halls… look at me, okay sweetie?” A voice tells him, looking out of breath. Sonic’s vision locks onto his mother, sweating as she rounds up the rest of his siblings close together. “Get closer, Cream.”
Pushing one of his adopted sisters back into the group, the nervous rabbit named Cream clutches onto the fur of Blaze. “W-Where are we going, mommy?”
“Somewhere safe. I’m taking you all to the hangar. Just follow your big sister, alright?”
“O-Okay…” Cream trembles, struggling to maintain control as her eyes twitch slightly.
“It’ll be okay.” Blaze strokes her ear, patting the blue plush toy clutched in the bunny’s arm. “Hold onto Cheese, hold her tight.”
Cheese does just that, clutching onto her doll like the world depends on it.
“What about you, mom?” The red Echidna of the family asks. “You and dad are coming, right?”
“We’re generals, Knuckles…” She replies. “It’s our job to keep the world from people like him. We have to fight.”
Taking her steps out of the group, a young pink hedgehog clutches her hammer with a scowl. “I-I’ll fight with you, then!”
She is suddenly stopped though as a black arm pulls her back in. He wags his finger in disapproval. “No, Amy.”
Amy budges herself out of her brother’s grip, looking back up to her mother with a face of defeat.
“Shadow’s right… I can’t drag you all into this.” She tells Amy.
“You’re not gonna stand a chance against him!” Silver gasps out, sweat coating his fur.
The mother looks away, biting her lip.
“…You have to rise against those chances.” Is all she can say, standing straight with renewed confidence.
Sonic could only look at her mom in awe, but it couldn’t be for long as the bloodcurdling scream of another unfortunate soul snaps him out of his daze.
“Come on, move!” Her mom then says before turning around, holding her hand out the pristine form of the Sentinel Sword materializes in her grasp. It ignites with mystical fire as she charges ahead with a battle cry.
“You heard her, everyone! Move!” Blaze then demands, taking the lead to guide the family.
As they venture down the stairs, the floors above shake with the cries and clashes of Sentinel soldiers, holding back this violent intruder.
“Sonic, I need you to open the hangar bay doors.” Blaze tells him. “Activate the sub, we’ll hide underwater.”
“Got it!” Sonic complies, taking off in a gust of wind.
“I hope he knows where the sub is…” Tails could only comment.
Meanwhile, Sonic dashes across the different floors of the castle. The further he explores, the darker it gets. After seconds of hastily dodging falling pieces of the ceiling and jumping over toppled equipment, his feet skids to a halt upon reaching the final floor. Pushing the steel door open with his strength, he comes face to face with the hangar.
Primitive cars, jets and tanks line themselves across the room, showcasing how eons ahead the Sentinel race is.
“Sub, sub, sub, sub…” Sonic repeats to himself, running in place, eyes darting across the floor.
However, it won’t be long until this hangar falls apart like the rest of the castle. The faint rumbling is only getting closer, the smaller vehicles shaking under the brief tremors of the island. Fumbling towards a hatch on the floor, Sonic turns the valves until it gives way.
A large tile of the floor opens up, revealing the top of a grey spherical submarine. Painted on its hull is the Sentinel logo: Two navy crescent moons encircling a sphere with piercing red eyes. Under it is the name of the vehicle, Nomad.
Harnessing his elemental control over wind, Sonic uses it to leap into the air (avoiding the ladder right next to him) and jump into the Nomad’s interior.
Immediately strapping himself into a seat, Sonic couldn’t help but tap his feet. Will Blaze and the others make it? Did they die on the way? What if they were so close, but Sonic wasn’t there when they were-
Sonic breathes a hasty sigh of relief at hearing Blaze’s voice.
“Hey, I’m in here!” He calls out from the Nomad, the sounds of his family scurrying up the ladder being heard. The first flying in naturally, is Tails.
“I’ll take this fella for a spin. Strap in, quick!” Tails calls out.
“How close is he?” Sonic asks the fox.
Blaze answers, jumping down onto the sub’s floor. “Close enough. We have to go!”
Tails scrambles to power up the Nomad, all the others taking their seats and preparing to go under. “Alright, engine’s up. We’re heading down!” He exclaims, pulling a final lever.
The hatch seals up and the restraints tethering the sub to the island loosening. The Nomad then proceeds to fall into the water below.
However, no amount of protection could shield the group from yet another earth shattering tremor. The water shakes furiously from the impact of the fight above.
“Is Mommy gonna be okay…?” Cream asks again, still holding onto Cheese for dear life.
“I…” Sonic opens his mouth, trying to make sense of what’s going on… let alone assure his youngest sibling. “I… don’t know…”
“Guys? You might wanna check this out.” Tails announces.
Peering out of the translucent windows, they notice the once clear blue waters start to illuminate a slight purple.
That’s only consuming the sea more, and more…
“Impossible… no Sentinel can do that!” Silver gasps. “Nobody has that power!”
“Can do what?!” Knuckles barks out.
“I’ve researched this… It’s a Purge Wave!” Silver gasps out. “One blast can cover the entire planet! The effects on the island ALONE could be…”
“Catastrophic…” Shadow whispers out.
“Brace for impact!” Tails closes his eyes, submerging the Nomad even deeper into the ocean depths.
Everyone closes their eyes, purple engulfing the sea as…
For a moment, everything felt weightless, no sound could be heard, and nothing can be seen. Just a blinding light. Then, the sound soon followed.
The deafening screech of the explosion penetrates the sub’s hull as the sea’s turbulence causes the Nomad to tumble through coral and seaweed uncontrollably.
Then, as quickly as it happened… it stops. The Nomad repositions as everyone regains their bearings.
“Is everyone okay?!” Sonic asks, jumping out of the seat and checking on everyone onboard. Aside from maybe a few scrapes… they seem alright for the most part.
Everyone, except for Blaze, who are nowhere in their seats.
“Blaze!” Sonic looks all over before eventually finding her in the back of the ship’s hull. She’s lying down, unconscious from being flung out of her seat… probably from shielding Cream.
The Nomad meanwhile slowly rises out of the water, reaching the surface to reveal the island from the windows.
The island as they knew it is still standing… but the castle?
Nothing more than a pile of scorched bricks. As the sub inches closer to the once great home of heroes, everyone peers from the windows to check for any source of life.
No plants, no trees… no animals of any kind.
Not a single Sentinel.
“Where’d they all go…?” Knuckles asks.
“Nothing could’ve survived a Purge Wave.” Silver gulps. “Dark Gaia used it long ago to reset the Earth… No one on the surface survived.”
Washing up on the sand, the hatch opens up as the remaining Sentinels crawl out one by one. “Hello?! Anyone?” Tails asks as he floats up.
Sonic meanwhile finishes up placing Blaze back on her seat to rest. “We’ll come back for you, okay?” He assures his sister before climbing back up.
Once he lands, he turns to the rest of the team. “Anything?”
“Nobody…” Tails could only sigh out. “They’re all… dead.”
“No… No, you’re kidding me, right?” Sonic asks. “There’s no way they’re gone! I mean… we took out the Metarex, how can-“
“Look around, Sonic!” Tails then exclaims, gesturing to the barren wasteland that was once their home. “Do you see anyone?! I don’t think so!”
“Mom and Dad, though! They’re the strongest of the army! Maybe they’re still out there! We gotta check the castle!” Knuckles runs off, holding off hope.
“Knuckles, wait!” Sonic reaches out, but he found himself rushing towards the castle too…
Eventually, the siblings crawl across the ashes of the fallen kingdom, making it to the top until all they see at the summit… is the Sentinel Sword, with the blade lodged in the middle.
It stands without an owner, without a soul to bond and materialize itself to.
Nobody could say a word as they gather around the sword, confirming that the worst has happened.
They are all that’s left of the Sentinels.
Tears start to well up in everyone’s eyes, mutters of “no”, and “I’m sorry” being shared amongst their grief… Sonic looks ahead, his eyes stained before noticing a limp creature on the floor… struggling to get up.
He’s crystalline in nature, holding an equally crystalized axe.
What was once stained with tears is now consumed by anger.
MUSIC: I AM THE DOCTOR – DOCTOR WHO
“You!” Sonic points towards the hedgehog. “You did this!”
The monster slowly turns around. “Survivors…! Of course there would be!”
“You killed my parents! You killed everyone!” Sonic steps forward, kicking several bricks away.
“Sonic, what are you-“ Silver asks out, but not before Amy could step up.
“You’re gonna pay for what you did!” Amy growls, gripping her hammer with malicious intent.
“They paid the price!” Mephiles calls out. “They ignored who they were, and became soft! I’m free of their control now… and I won’t let a couple of children take it away from me!”
Sonic turns around, looking at the sword. He then glances at his hand before swiftly reaching for it. The minute he touches the hilt, he feels power coursing through his veins. He falls to his knees slightly, overwhelmed by the energy.
His eyes flicker gold, his mind filled with thoughts instilled onto him by the sword. He must prove worthy of its power!
Struggling, wincing and gritting his teeth, Sonic starts to slowly unsheathe the sword.
“What? That’s impossible! There’s no way anyone could wield that sword!” Mephiles readies his axe, bewildered at Sonic’s willpower.
“Sometimes… You have to rise…!” Sonic could only grunt out, unable to say the rest. Eventually, the sword rises out of the ashes, gold engulfing the family with energy.
“…Who are you?!” Mephiles exclaims, angerly.
Stepping out of the light, sword in tow, Sonic points it towards the murderer.
“…Sonic The Hedgehog!”
A brief new chapter for The Disciples is here! Sonic and Sayaka's relationship grows... gradually.
CHAPTER 9: AWKWARD CONNECTIONS
“That’s… sorta how it all began with me,” Sonic shrugs, passing by yet another acrylic depiction of his history. “That sword gave us immortality, and Mephiles and I remained enemies for… eons at this point.”
“I had the remaining Sentinels, and got an army called the Metarex and we kept fighting, and fighting… blow after blow until-“
Holding her hand up, hand rubbing her temple, Sayaka proceeds to shake her head.
“Look, your story is… interesting and all that, but what is the point of all this?” Sayaka asks, a small bit of annoyance on her face. “Dragging me to this museum, giving me your life story… I-I just wanna go home.”
Sonic squints for a moment, letting out an unamused grimace. “Look, kid. You kinda asked.”
“I-I know, I know, I…” Sayaka takes a deep breath, tugging on her bangs for a moment.
Sonic exhales, himself, dragging his right foot across the floor. “This is gonna be harder than I thought.”
“I get it,” He mellows out. “You’re stressed… anxious, totally out of your element, I’ve been there, really.”
“This is my first rodeo too in a long time, you know? Usually everyone I get is all caught up, and taught, and ready for duty before I even lift a finger.”
The small, spherical hedgehog clicks his tongue. “It’s tough for both of us.”
The two then mutually shut their mouths, silent… neither exchanging any words as they ponder over themselves.
Eventually to break the awkward silence, Sonic coughs. “Museum’s pretty nice though, right?”
“Yeah…” Is all Sayaka could declare.
Sonic’s eyes droop down, discouraged by his attempts to just get this new recruit to open up. “After all of this, though.” He gestures to the room. “The glitz, glamor and… constant fighting here, in this world, something made me leave that behind.”
“Voices called me, a portal opened… and I took the dive. That’s how it all began with me and The Disciples.”
Sayaka turns her head, raising her eyebrow. “Voice… I heard that, too.”
“Told me it’s like, I am the one.”
“Told me the same thing too.” Sonic lets out a small chuckle. “Real generic omnipresent banter.”
“But that’s why I gotta look out for you, kid. If those voices say you’re what this realm needs right now, it’s up to me to help you prove it.”
Sonic nudges the girl, his elbow hitting just a little above her waist. “Just don’t sweat it, okay? This is your chance to be a hero.”
“That is… if you wanna be one. I think you got the chops.”
That question has Sayaka look at her hand, opening and closing her palm. Her fingers emanate just the slightest flicker of gold, bringing out this strange new power within herself.
“I always wanted to. But-“
“Then we’re set!” Sonic rubs his gloved hands, turning to his watch. “And just in time, too! Our ride’s here!”
“Ride?” Sayaka asks, putting down her arm.
“We’re going home, Sayaka.” Sonic then tells her, turning on his heel to face the door. “A new home.”
“T-That wasn’t what I meant be going home, you know!” Sayaka exclaims, walking after him.
A new Disciples chapter is here! Meet Sentinel Tails and his trusty ship, the Dreamcast!
CHAPTER 10: IT'S THINKING
“Right, so where is everyone?”
Stepping out of the museum, Sonic scrolls his eyes among the legion of paparazzi still crowding the streets of Station Square.
Luckily, it did not take that long to find the rest of his squad considering one of the members is a giant hulking green man and a bright red alien robot.
“Alright, alright, picture and headline time’s over people! We gotta head out!” Sonic holds his hands out, alerting the masses. “Been fun being home and all, but we gotta take the newbie back to base!”
One intrepid reporter speaks up, holding a microphone at the still overwhelmed Sayaka. “We still have questions though! Is this the rumored second Golden One?”
Sayaka gulps, holding a finger out for a moment.
“Yes, this is the one we’ve been waitin’ for… but she ain’t exactly in the question answering mood.” Sonic wags his finger. “So, save the questions for later, kay?”
Complying with the hedgehog’s instructions, the groups of reporters step away much to Sayaka’s surprise. This Sonic fellow, due to being this city’s protector for what is probably the entire city’s history has garnered him a lot of respect among the residents.
Regrouping with the others, Sonic takes notice that Neptune is once again among them, now enjoying a delicious ice cream treat.
“How’s it taste?” Sonic asks, nudging the lilac haired young girl.
“Mmmm! Deeeelish!” Neptune squeals with glee.
Sonic then redirects his attention to the others. “Damage report.”
“Zero casualties, thankfully. Although a couple injuries from some Droid misfires.” Optimus Prime states.
“Are they being treated?” Sonic then runs down, looking over to Iron Man.
“Friday contacted the hospital.” Tony replies, pointing to the helmet which contains his suit’s AI. “Some ambulances arrived during all those interviews.”
He then takes a long look at Sonic and Sayaka, moving his finger from pointing between the two. “Where… were you two, anyway?”
“Museum. Lots of exposition.” Sonic points to the structure they just left from.
“And leave us hanging swarmed by mics and cameras? Not fair, dude.” Spyro shakes his head.
“I dunno, I kinda liked it.” Tony replies, folding his arms.
Spyro lets out a small chuckle. “Course you did.”
“I did too… kinda.” Kai then shrugs, taking Tony’s side… albeit “kinda” taking his side.
Iron Man nods at the fire Ninja. “Thanks… kinda?”
“We done here?” Sonic snaps his fingers, trying to catch their attention. “Because Sayaka here… your name’s Sayaka, right?”
“Y-Yeah…” The bluenette nods.
“Makin’ sure. So, Sayaka here has gotta go through orientation. So we better haul our behinds back to base. Where’s the Dreamcast?”
Spyro’s neck cranes to the side, trying to look at the dispersing crowd of people. “Think I saw it dock at that parking lot over there…” He states pointing is claw ahead, across a driveway.
Walking along to reach their destination, Sayaka’s eyes widen at what awaits them at the parking lot…
“What the hell is that?” She asks, bewildered at what lies before her.
It’s a giant orange spherical ship, a clean orb only adorned with a large visor-like window in the front. On its sides are equally spherical thrusters and a small turret on the top. It almost looks like something pulled from a 1960s Sci-Fi film.
“That… is the Dreamcast.” Sonic introduces.
Protruding from the orb, almost as if a door is carving itself from the seamless exterior, an opening reveals itself and folds out a set of stairs.
This may be technology, but for Sayaka this display alone feels no different than the magic that populates her world.
Now is not the time to question how it works though (not that Sayaka would probably understand the mechanics behind it all anyway), as everyone starts to squeeze into the door.
Which however rises a different question.
The Hulk and Optimus… they seem to be as half big as that ship. How would they even fit inside with everyone else?
Even as Sayaka witnesses the door expand to accommodate their size… it could still be a tight fit. So how could they…?
Her inquiries once again grind to a halt as it becomes her turn to enter the ship. Once the interior becomes known to her, her question is answered.
“It’s… bigger on the inside!” She could only exclaim.
She walks down a wide hallway, undoubtably larger than any airplane. Hell, probably larger than even four planes.
She looks up, the ceiling being much higher than it possibly should be, providing plenty of moving room for the massive warriors.
“You can think Gallifreyan technology for that, sister!”
Sayaka snaps her head to look back. Taking notice of a pilot’s chair surrounded by a giant control desk, the seat swivels around to reveal a yellow, slightly orange creature just like Sonic.
The only difference being that this one has two tails and visible ears.
“A real beaut, ain’t she?”
Sonic clears his throat, gesturing to the fox. “Sayaka, this is my brother Tails.”
“Nice to meet ya, kid.” Tails gives a small salute. “You’re the next big cheese, huh?”
“And I suppose you made this ship?” Sayaka asks him.
“Honey, let me tell you. I do more than make ships.” Tails swivels back to the controls, flipping a couple switches. “I’ll be makin’ your gear too.”
“My gear?” Sayaka tilts her head.
“What, you’re gonna fight evil in a school uniform? Gimmie a break.” Tails chuckles to himself. “Heh, that’s a good one.”
“I’m already getting ideas, kid. No stoppin’ the mind when the gears are turning. IIIIIt’s thinking!”
Sayaka squints her eyes before turning to Sonic. “He seems nice.”
“He’s… not the best with meeting new people.” Sonic pats her on the back. “He’ll warm up.”
“Whaddaya talking about, I’m charming!” Tails raises his finger. “I’m just speaking the truth here!”
“Just take a seat, someone’s trying to dock a Chevy in my spot. So we better get moving.” Tails then comments.
Complying, Sayaka shuffles over to one of the leather seats. As she straps in, she turns to the side. For a second or two, all she could stare at is an orange wall. However after a moment, just like the door, the wall carves itself open like a soft sponge cake and vanishes. Now instead, she is facing a newly formed window.
“Next stop, The Golden Skylands.” Tails announces over the intercom. “Buckle up, lackies.”
The Dreamcast shakes as the engine revs up, the thrusters release a burst of energy as the ship rises into the air. Sayaka could see the parking lot slowly disappear from view to be replaced by skies and the faint glimpses of cities beyond.
As Sayaka gets a good look of the view ahead of her, she could only think about Madoka.
Is she okay?
Does Madoka even know where Sayaka is? Can she see her?
Does she even know about these Disciples to begin with?
“Rift Engines online, beginning portal construction now. VMU in position…”
The cannon atop the ship, the Vehicular Mounted Utility takes aim and fires a glowing navy orb a couple dozen meters away from the Dreamcast. The orb then erupts, opening a spinning blue rift ahead of the ship’s flight path.
“You’re in for a real light show, kid!”
As instructed, Sayaka braces herself.
The thrusters rotate to face the ship’s back, kicking its engines to overdrive and launching the Dreamcast to full speed.
Sayaka finds herself thrown back slightly, letting out an alarmed grunt as the Dreamcast engulfs itself into the depths of the rift, closing behind them.
The next chapter is here, and it's time for maybe just a weeeee look into the lives of the opposing faction: The Metarex!
CHAPTER 11: DISMISSED
MUSIC: DECIPHERING THE SIGNAL – TRANSFORMERS
Crystalline hands drum against the armrests of a throne. Not a single word is uttered is heard. Just the drumming echoing through the throne room’s hallway. Kneeling before their master, Cad Bane and Lockdown scowl under their breath, humiliated but not willing to evoke any wrath from the one who sits above them.
“To think I entrusted you with a simple duty. Kill the girl.” Mephiles then speaks up. “You had one mission, arguably the most important mission of this entire faction’s history.”
“Are you proud of yourselves? You let the entire Metarex down.”
Mephiles stands down and slowly floats down from his chair before landing on the silk carpet. “And to think you called yourselves the best hunters ever written.”
“Sir…” Cad Bane finally grumbles, raising his head to face the hedgehog’s venomous glare. “We never had time to prepare, she just fell from the-“
His plea did not last long, as Mephiles reaches for the alien’s throat, silencing him. A cold wind blows through the room as Cad Bane’s hat whisks off his blue head and floats to the ground.
“Our forces outnumbered the Disciples’ squadron 6 to 1 back there. Even without warning, you had more than enough time to make sure I struck her down before they got to the ship! So, don’t even think of pulling the preparation card on me!”
Lockdown then pinches Cad by the legs, his massive stature becoming easy to pry his partner away from Mephiles’ grasp. Yanking him back to the ground, Lockdown looks down at his superior.
“We won’t fail again, Lord Mephiles. One way or another, that girl will die!”
Mephiles shakes off his hand, disappointed by Lockdown’s interference in his discipline. His hands ball up into fists, purple energy crackling throughout his arm with rage. Now is the hedgehog’s turn to scowl before looking down, his sneer turning back into a frown.
The power building up within him dies down, whatever composure he has returning to him.
“You’re lucky I still have use for you.” He then points to the massive door behind them. “Dismissed, await your next operation.”
Lockdown nods before turning around and departing, nudging Cad with his foot. “Come on, Bug Eyes.”
Cad Bane coughs, rubbing his throat and retrieving his hat, adjusting it just right. Grumbling, he dismissively follows the Cybertronian out of Mephiles’ quarters.
Stepping back to his throne, Mephiles sits back down, drumming once again. After a couple minutes, the door then opens back up to reveal a blue robed beaked sorcerer floating up to the leader with some kind of steel case.
“Ah, Kamek. My loyal informant!” Mephiles beckons with glee. “Please tell me you have brought some good news!”
“I have retrieved what you requested, my lord!” Kamek bows, handing the case over. “Didn’t take much searching in the Outlands library to get it, but this should be all you need to know about our new friend!”
The metal case is sealed with a glowing Metarex insignia of a pointed purple crown encased in a circle. Holding his hand out, Mephiles’ magic unlocks the seal, the case fading away to reveal the contents inside. It is two Blu-Ray covers stacked atop each other with five girls posing on the art. Front and center is the name of the product at hand…
PUELLA MAGI MADOKA MAGICA: THE COMPLETE SERIES
Mephiles then moves the top case to the right to observe the Blu-Ray below it.
PUELLA MAGI MADOKA MAGICA MOVIE 3: REBELLION
“Hope you enjoy your little research session, master! Heheheheh…!” Kamek cackles.
Mephiles lets out a small chuckle. “Indeed I will. It’s only a matter of time before this… Sayaka girl is fully trained. It’s time I do a little training of my own.”
Mephiles opens the cases to reveal the discs inside and hands them over to the wizard. “Cue them. Then prepare to send notes to the orientation division.”
“Let us all find out how insignificant she really is.”
The throne rotates, facing the wall as it opens up to reveal a massive screen. Kamek flies out with the discs in hand as the projection starts to play.
Meanwhile in the mess hall of the Metarex ship, Cad Bane slams the table in rage.
“Stupid hedgehog!” He spits, letting out his grievances.
“The blue one or the purple one?” The robot Ultron asks, grinning at seeing the once skilled hunter in disarray.
“Both of ‘em!” Cad shoos off with his hand. “Making me look like a fool like that.”
Sipping a glass of an alcoholic beverage, Boba Fett looks over to his rival. “He should’ve put me on the case, but you so insisted this morning.”
“So much for being the one determined to quote unquote, eliminate the new Golden One, huh?”
“Shut up, Fett.” Cad sneers at the Mandalorian.
Just then, Ultron’s sensors hear something echoing at a across the hall that he pinpoints as Mephiles’ room.
Kawashita yakusoku wasurenai yo me o toji tashikameru…
Sorry for the delay! School, amirite fellas?
CHAPTER 12: THE GOLDEN SKYLANDS
MUSIC – THEMYSCIRA – WONDER WOMAN 1984
Speeding through the brilliant blue dimensional tunnel, Sayaka could only stare in awe at what she is witnessing. When she fell through that vortex earlier, she only got a brief glimpse of this alluring bridge between worlds before falling into slumber. Now she could see it in all its glory.
…And just how much it gave her a slight headache.
Her eyes struggle to keep up with all the white squares speeding past her in the blink of an eye. Whatever she could catch is the faintest of images of fantastical worlds… passing by hundreds in a second.
“Not even the Law of Cycles is this trippy looking!” Sayaka winces.
“Told ya.” Tails smirks from behind the wheel, observing Sayaka from an overhead mirror. “Hell of a light show.”
“These are all different worlds, right? I can’t really tell with how fast they’re going, but I think they are?” She then asks.
“Each and every one of ‘em.” Sonic says.
He then begins pointing to each one that passes by, his super speed not just extending to his feet when he does.
“There’s Gotham City, Far Far Away, that weird underground world in Space Jam, the Hoenn Region, New York, New York, New York, New York…”
Sonic frowns for a moment.
“…It just hit me how many worlds have New York City as the center of everything.”
The Dreamcast alarm blares, snapping everyone into attention.
“Light at the end of the tunnel, prepping for re-entry guys!” Tails then calls out, flipping a couple switches and levers.
“Finally!” Kai sighs, slumping into his seat. “Woke up early in the morning for this mission, I need some sleep!”
“Seriously?” Spyro asks from the seat across him.
“Hey, I at least wanted to be the first to see her for myself! Once in a lifetime chance! Moment the alarms went off, I woke up and forced myself to get changed!”
“Well, if you’re awake General, you might as well help show the new recruit arou-“ Commander Trace asks before having his suggestion silenced with the sound of snores from the Fire Ninja.
“You know, I can’t tell if he’s tired… or trying to avoid more work.” Iron Man shrugs. “What about Neptu-“
The Avenger turns around to the seat where the lilac-haired girl lies, greeted with an expected response.
“Oh, of course.” Tony frowns.
The blue hues of the vortex slowly change, hints of gold slowly engulfing the rift before opening up in a flash.
“Ack…!” Sayaka shields her eyes from the brightness before moving her hands away to look back at the window. Now all she sees is white.
Not just white, but texture. Something light, fluffy, almost ethereal.
Clouds. Clouds giving way to the shape of the Dreamcast’s spherical shape as it lifts upwards into the skies above. For a moment, just a fleeting moment… she thinks she is home.
“Ladies and gentlemen, the Golden Skylands.” Tails declares, introducing Sayaka to this bold new realm.
An endless sea of floating islands, accompanied by an armada’s worth of spaceships, aircrafts, hot air balloons and any kind of airborne vehicle one can possibly envision from the depths of their imagination. They fly from island to island, docking to pick up their inhabitants.
Sayaka could only lean forward against her seat in awe, pressing against the impenetrable glass. “Whoaaa!”
Her eyes lock on one island, seeing a flying monorail dock by a wide rectangular island. Many people and creatures of different shapes and sizes climb aboard and-
“H-Hey, hold up, is that Sailor Moon?!” Sayaka squints, noticing a blonde girl with long twin tails among the crowds of characters she only sees on TV. “I loved Sailor Moon as a kid! Used to wake up every Saturday morning and-”
She then awkwardly stops in her ramble glancing over at all the other passengers. Self-consciousness easily creeps back up to her. She blushes slightly and clears her throat.
“Right, uhh.. Is everyone down there Disciples?”
“Not all of ‘em. Every day, multiverses are thrown out of wack. If a universe out there is exposed to evil way out of its league, Golden Skylanders are sent out to take care of ‘em.” Tony replies. “This whole realm is filled with… er, heroes, for lack of a better term who are bred and trained for this sort of gig.”
“And Disciples? We’re the best of the best of them. Cream of the crop. As elite as you can get. You get the point.”
Sayaka takes one more look out the window, letting out a brief chuckle. “Oh, I get it alright.”
The Dreamcast approaches a massive floating stone arch. Atop it, adorning the gateway is the signature Disciples insignia as a stone statue: Four segmented pieces of a circle encompassed by wings. Below it is the location’s designation:
Come to think of it, Sayaka could have sworn she saw a logo very similar to that on her Wii before… but not quite.
Either way, it’s a perfect indicator as to the Disciples’ importance to this civilization.
Zooming past the arch, more stone statues hover beside the ship to welcome them back. A statue on the left, another parallel on the right for each row they pass by. Some being carvings of the very same heroes riding with Sayaka right now.
Iron Man, Optimus Prime, Spyro, among many others she hasn’t met. But she could pinpoint a few from TV.
Eventually, the final statue on the left reveals itself, a golden recreation of the Sentinel himself: Sonic. On the right…
…Nothing, just an empty golden pedestal. Sayaka frowns, already piecing together what this means.
“You guys really have been waiting for me all this time, huh?” She turns away from the window.
“Yup. We just needed to know who you were gonna be!” Tails says. “Gotta say, dead anime girl was not the first thing I thought of.”
“I don’t think any of us did, sir.” Trace says before observing Sayaka’s distraught expression. He coughs to change the subject slightly.
“Not saying we’re not open to surprises…”
The Dreamcast approaches a massive island. The thrusters revert into landing positions as a robotic replica of Sonic uses glowsticks sprouting from his arm cannons to park them into positions. Slowly but surely the Dreamcast finally lands, and the doors open.
“Right, time for the grand entrance. Lemme set the tone.” Sonic pats Sayaka swiftly on the back before sliding off the seats and making his way down the hall. “Let’s rock and roll!”
Stepping out of the Dreamcast to face a massive crowd of eager Disciples, Sonic holds out his hand to the nearby cockpit, Tails grabbing a microphone and slipping it into his mitts.
The VMU cannon positions itself to face the gathering, feedback of the mic playing out of it as Sonic taps it with his finger to test.
“Thanks, everyone for gathering here on short notice! We were all surprised when we got that alert of Golden Energy landing right smack-dab in my backyard! But thanks to Team Sonic…”
The hedgehog pauses for dramatic effect, taking a deep breath.
“…We got her!”
A barrage of cheers sound out from across the island. Sonic cockily performs a mic drop, much to Tails’ dismay.
“Hey, hey, hey! Watch the merchandise!” Tails rants.
One by one, the Disciples onboard leave the oversized opening… which is required to let robots like Optimus through.
Even Kai and Neptune begrudgingly step out, waving with one hand and rubbing their exhausted eyes with the other.
They are greeted to sounds of cheering, whooping and welcoming back from a job well done on such a historic mission from heroes ranging from Mr. Incredible to Yu Narukami.
Lastly, Sayaka nervously takes her first few steps out of the ship into a whole new world. She dusts off her skirt, adjusts her bow… are her hairpins on right? It’s too late for that!
She swallows her fear and heads into the light.
SCHOOL, AMIRITE FELLAS?
CHAPTER 13: THE NON-BELIEVER
“Hey, hey! There they are!” A gruff voice calls out.
Pushing through the crowd of heroes, a small old creature hobbles out with one arm extended. The other hand in contrast is holding a wooden cane. Blonde fur covers his body until they reach the chin, transitioning into a stark white beard. Over him, he is wearing an expeditioner’s outfit alongside an eyepatch and a pegleg, he laughs proudly as he approaches Sonic.
Neptune notices the greeter and hesitantly sidesteps away from sight.
“Heeey, s’up Buzz!” Sonic then exclaims with a wave. He approaches the old creature, being met with a pat on the shoulder.
“I knew you could do it, my boy!” Buzz laughs. “Today is the start of a new age!”
He clenches his fist with determination. “With a second Golden One, the Metarex don’t stand a chance!”
“You know it! The Metarex responded to the alert first, though. But… she actually helped us in the fight to get her back.” Sonic chuckles, grabbing Buzz’s hand and setting it aside from his arm.
“Really, now? She hasn’t even started her first day on the job and she’s already taking charge?” Buzz asks with a raised eyebrow. “Now, this I gotta see! Where is our little champion, huh?”
Sonic steps aside, gesturing to Sayaka who is nervously twiddling her thumbs at the two.
Buzz’s eager grin suddenly morphs into a face of disbelief…
…And then to an angry frown.
“And, how did she help you again?” Buzz then asks, glancing at Sonic suspiciously.
It takes a while for Sonic to respond, clicking his tongue in the meantime.
“Weeeelll…” Sonic looks away from his glance. “She told us to duck sometimes, OH, and she advised me to spin dash on Cad Bane’s boots! That gave us the leg up!”
Buzz’s glance intensifies. Even with just one eye, that stare has the power of three.
“That is the absolute bare minimum of involvement, and you know it.” Buzz sternly replies.
“Hey, least she was trying!” Sonic scowls in the bluenette’s offense.
Then, Buzz rapidly presses himself to Sonic and forces him to spin around to not face Sayaka. He slams his cane on the floor, taking a deep breath.
All the while Sayaka turns away herself, even more anxiously riddled by Buzz’s disapproving glare. She moves over to Trace. “I have the strongest feeling that guy doesn’t like me…”
“Who, Buzz?” Trace asks, looking at the two creatures talking. “Yeah, he’s the oldest trainer in the Golden Skylands. Taught a lot of us born here how to fight as a team.”
“…But as such, he thinks he knows who’s got potential and who doesn’t.”
Sayaka bites her lower lip. “So, he thinks I don’t, huh?”
“As of now? Yes.” Trace says.
“Thanks for the pep talk.” Sayaka groans.
Meanwhile, Buzz and Sonic are having their own conversation that is just as joyful.
“Do you know who that is?!” Buzz asks.
“As far as I know, she told me her name’s Sayaka?” Sonic shrugs.
“Second Semester. Know Your Anime Worlds class. Puella Magi Madoka Magica?!” Buzz slams his cane on the ground.
“…Oooohhh!” Sonic snaps his fingers. “Yeah, I took that elective didn’t I? Look, I uh, called in sick that day. Skimmed through some borrowed notes, didn’t think missing one show would be that important.”
Buzz squints at Sonic, unamused. “You never skipped a single class. Don’t bullshit me, Sonic. I mean you worked wi-“
Sonic holds his hands up. “Fine, fine! I know who she is! I acted like I didn’t though… didn’t wanna break the whole truth to her just yet.”
“I just wanted to build her up, man. She’s been through a lot, dying timeline after timeline. Don’t you think she deserves a shot?”
“If you know who she is, you know why she isn’t worthy of those powers!” Buzz holds Sonic’s hand up, waving it. “Every timeline she makes a contract, tries to play the hero, fails miserably, and dies at her own hands!”
“Are we seriously going to entrust the fate of everything to her when she can’t even save herself?!”
Sonic once again pries himself away from Buzz’s grip. “Buzz, this is the third time we had a debate like this. When will you let it go? First Neptune, then-“
“This is way beyond that mistake, and that white rat!” Buzz shakes his head. “Letting them into the Disciples is one thing, but Golden Ones?! Are you kidding me?”
Sonic’s hands then flare up gold. “Then what are you gonna do, then?! Not like these powers can just be transferred to whoever you think fits your standards!”
He opens his palms as the golden energy fades away. “If there’s anything all those stories I researched told me, is that the best kinda heroes are the unlikely ones. Who’s to say this is an exception?
Buzz rolls his open eye before turning back to Sayaka, who isn’t even making eye contact with him.
“The weapons chose her for a reason. Before you completely dismiss her, let’s find out what that reason is.”
Buzz holds his cane up, dusting off the wooden cracks and crevices. He then turns back around and points it at Sonic.
“I’ll teach her. But I won’t train her. That’s on you if you think she’s so special.” Buzz declares.
“Deal.” Sonic says, sealing the compromise with a handshake.
“…That is, if the Prequels approve her.” Buzz tells him.
“Oh, trust me. They have no choice.” Sonic chuckles with a cheeky grin.
The meta shit's really boutta hit the fan.
MUSIC – THEME OF THE RESISTANCE – SONIC FORCES
“So… what are the Prequels?” Sayaka asks, finally breaking her silence as herself, Sonic and Buzz walk across the grasslands of the Ruins to meet these mysterious creatures.
Sonic looks back at Sayaka and lets out a brief huff. “Honestly? I don’t know. None of us know!”
“Huh? Seems like you had the answer for everything…” Sayaka tilts her head.
“Now THAT, my friend’s an exaggeration. I just gave you my life’s story, this is something else.” Sonic answers as he wags his finger. “The Prequels are these fellas who apparently been around before all of our universes were even born.”
Buzz breaks his own streak to ignore Sayaka, replying to her but keeping his eyes on the road rather than face the bluenette. “They keep their identity a secret, and since they were the very first Golden Skylanders, they call all the shots around here. Including Disciples.”
“They’re the ones that approved Sonic to take the lead, and they’ll approve you.”
He lets out a small grin that only Sonic could notice, frowning as a result, knowing exactly what will come next.
“…And if they don’t, they’ll make sure you’ll get a one-way trip back to whatever afterlife you came from. So bet on them saying no if you wanna get back home, kid.”
Sayaka looks over to the skies as Buzz talks, noticing more aircrafts fly by to new missions. They fly up into portals just like the Dreamcast did. She could only imagine who is inside those ships. Perhaps incredibly capable of champions, hardened and trained to the core like Sonic… or maybe it could be someone like her, just taking a leap of faith and doing what’s right.
She shakes her head… it HAS to be the former, no way the latter would be performing barrel rolls in a blue Police Box blaring 50s Big Band music into a vortex like what she just saw pass by a second ago.
…Also, did she seriously just see that?
Before she could even start to comprehend that sight, the arrive at what seems to be a metal pyramid. The three stands before giant golden doors with two blue armored soldiers keeping guards: Senate Troopers.
“We have an appointment with the Prequels.” Buzz says to the Trooper on the right, who nods in response. He turns around to a panel and gestures to Buzz, who presses his paw against the panel as it scans his fur.
As the identification process continues, Sayaka looks over to Sonic and clears her throat. “So… you have a lot of powers, right? None of your guys figured out who they are?”
“Oh, ho, ho, ho… trust me, I tried.” Sonic laughs. “I went into appointments with psychics, detectives and that jazz as um… support, and they couldn’t even figure out what was going on under those cloaks.”
“Has to be some kinda magic.”
Eventually, the panel lets out a small jingle and closes itself off. The pyramid begins to rumble, the gates sliding away to reveal a dark room. The Senate Troopers are the first to enter, before others step foot onto the marble floor.
“Creation may fall…!” Sonic calls out.
Sayaka looks down at the floor as lights slowly start to illuminate their surroundings. Slowly, the pattern on the floor reveals themselves to show four circles bound to each other by golden chains.
She then looks upwards to see herself surrounded by giant pews that tower over her, seating white and golden cloaked figures which look down at the three. Sayaka could only look at them in awe, and a slight tinge of hope that maybe they could answer why she’s even here.
“…But it will rise again.” The figures conclude, beginning the conference.
“Some sort of ritual?” Sayaka asks.
“Yeah, just a motto these guys started. Just roll with it.” Sonic whispers before clearing his voice. “Ahem! Prequels! We bring before you…”
He nudges Sayaka by swiftly pushing his shoe against her own. Startled, Sayaka takes a large step forward.
“The second Golden One! Sayaka Miki!”
“Er, hi!” Sayaka awkwardly waves as the hooded figures turn to each other, conversing without word… almost like psychics…
Or maybe a hive mind, Sayaka thinks.
“So this is the Champion the Weapons have chosen?” A smaller figure then replies in a distorted, deep voice. “A curious choice…”
“It ain’t my first thought, that’s for sure.” Another figure replies, almost sporting some kind of accent… but Sayaka couldn’t deduce what under all the distortion.
“But we do not argue the logistics of the Golden Weapons, for their motives far exceed our understanding.” A female figure then adds.
“Wait… so you don’t even know why they chose me?” Sayaka asks. “And what do you mean by Weapons?”
“How much do you know of our history, young one?”
“Not a lot. All I know is what happened to him, and how he got here.” Sayaka looks over to Sonic. “But I’m still not entirely sure what HERE is, or what it’s got to do with me!”
She takes a deep breath, looking to Sonic and Buzz. “Before we start fighting over me, can we first get some records straight? What is this place, who is everyone, and what does it have to do with me?!” She finally growls in frustration, causing a deafening silence as her rant echoes across the room.
She slowly slips back to her previous spot and bites her lip. “I-If you know, if you can.”
“The girl is assertive. I like her already.” Another figure says.
“Oh, come on…” Buzz rolls his eye and mutters under his breath.
MUSIC – CYBERTRON – TRANSFORMERS
Suddenly, the four circles under them begin to glow… sprouting illusionary images of spheres with stars and planets inside.
Three of the spheres vanish, leaving one to hover before them.
“In the beginning, there was Reality, and six golden deities that surround it. These six beings had the power to create anything… but lacked any ideas of their own. They observed mankind, taking a notice to something they had: Imagination.”
“Looking into their minds, they found the most wonderous of thoughts. Stories, characters, worlds… Fiction. But it was just that… Fiction. Intangible, unfeeling, non-existent Fiction.”
“Inspired by their innovation, these entities took the ideas of every human, or as we call them… Writers on Earth… creating a parallel realm: The Fictional Realm.”
The second sphere appears before them.
“The Fictional Realm held multiverses, omniverses even… each one containing worlds based on a Writer’s imagination. Then, to govern the balance of Good and Evil… the Golden beings gave birth to two more Realms.”
The second sphere then sprouted two more spheres, one golden, one purple.
“The Realm of Good, which eventually turned into the Golden Skylands. And the Realm of Evil, which morphed into the Violet Outlands. The agents of each Realm spread justice and chaos across the Fictional Realm… and the Deities fell into slumber, taking on the form of Weapons and embedding themselves into different worlds until they wake someday.”
“But ten years ago… something went awry. The Sentinel outcast known as Mephiles emerged in the Violet Outlands with a proposition. He will form an army to correct the injustice Writers have done on characters such as himself.”
The spheres are then coated in chains.
“But each Realm is walled off from the other, only certain beings can pass through them… but the Golden Weapons anticipated such a revolution and protected the Writers from their own creations long ago with a stronger barrier known as The Fourth Wall. No Fictional Being could break The Fourth Wall… not without two of the six weapons.”
“The new Metarex have a new mission… find them at any costs when the Weapons eventually rise from their slumber. To combat them, the slowly waking weapons have chosen Sonic The Hedgehog to form a force strong enough to protect our Creators: The Disciples.”
The four spheres merge together, morphing into the Disciples insignia of a circle with a cross, wings sprouting from each side.
“The Weapons say there will be three protectors chosen to lead The Disciples… each embodying creation and will wield a piece of their power. Yesterday, there has been only one.”
The Sonic image then morphs once more… forming Sayaka clad in her Magical Girl outfit.
“…Today, there are two.”
Sayaka stares at the image of herself standing triumphantly, holding her cutlass proudly… but her eyes don’t show awe.
Quite the opposite.
Her hands pierce through the mirage, the images dissolving as she tries to tear it apart.
“…NO!” She shouts, causing yet another silence. She stands slumped over, breathing heavily.
“I’m… I’m…” Sayaka grips the ribbon on her chest, her hands uncontrollably glowing gold.
“You are Sayaka Miki. Child of Eri and Shinji Miki. Friend of Madoka Kaname. Agent of the Law of Cycles… creation of Gen Urobuchi.”
“…Beholden to the franchise Puella Magi Madoka Magica.”
The fan hits further, my dudes.
CHAPTER 15: DECISIONS
Sayaka kneels on the floor, staring at her quivering hands. Sweat trickles down her skin to the point where she tell the difference between that, or the tears coming out of her eyes.
Her pupils dilate, her grasp on reality crumbling just as much as her perception of time as everything feels slow.
This can’t be real, it must be some bad dream… right? That somehow, maybe she’ll wake up back in the Law of Cycles, in Madoka’s warm embrace.
Or maybe everything is a dream, and better yet… she’ll wake up in her bed, late for school, this whole Magical Girl thing? Her death? Just one endless nightmare.
It can’t be real.
This can’t be real.
She must be real.
But she can’t hide from the truth. It’s all making too much sense… yet isn’t at the same time.
All of these people and creatures she swore were just creations where she lives suddenly saving her life, it’s because they’re just like her.
They’re all characters.
Just like Mephiles said.
“What you did… Or maybe what you were forced to do, more like?”
“Everything you have ever done up until now has been controlled by an unmerciful god!”
“I’m not talking about your friend, fool! They’ve been controlling her, too!”
“You’re an insignificant character!”
Puella Magi Madoka Magica. That name echoes through her brain in tandem with Mephiles’ rants.
Whatever this… franchise is, Madoka is the main character. Of course she is. She’s a god. Everything in her world revolves around her.
Then for Sayaka, what does it make her?
Why is it her that has to die while everyone lives?
Is it true?
“Am I… insignificant?”
Just asking that question crashes her back into reality… or what she perceived as reality until now.
“I… I CAN’T be just some character!” Sayaka pats herself. “L-Look at me! Feel me!” She smacks against her sleeves, pinching herself, slapping herself relentlessly to smack her tears away.
“Sayaka, SAYAKA!” Sonic grabs her arm, refusing her from hurting herself any further. “Stop it!”
“Let me go!” Sayaka cries, trying to resist his surprisingly firm grip.
Buzz uses this time to hobble over to face the Prequels. “See? Look at her! She could barely get a grip of the truth! Are we really entrusting the fate of the Writers to an immature child?!”
“I request discharging her immediately, she could barely handle herself, let alone Mephiles!”
The Prequels mentally talk amongst each other briefly as the two blue chosen ones struggle with one another.
“Look! Listen to me!” Sonic lets her arm go as it falls limp. “I-I’m sorry, okay?!”
Sayaka glares at Sonic, panting and unable to find the will to fight back any further.
“I… I should’ve handled this better.” Sonic grinds his teeth reluctantly. “I knew who you were… knew the crap you went through and I-I just didn’t know how the break the news to you.”
“Probably should’ve before we even left.” He laments.
He sits alongside her, twiddling his thumbs. “I know how you feel… Not like I knew I was a character before I was brought in either.”
“Probably even harder for you, realizin’ all those times you died and it’s for some kinda anime.”
Sayaka could only nod at that softly. Feeling a gloved hand pat her bare one.
“But think about it… the fact that you’re here? Means you’re free, right?”
“Free to do what?” Sayaka mutters. “Fight to protect this Gen guy? I don’t know who he is… and now I know he’s like my God who… who killed my friends, caused Madoka to throw her life away and… made me throw away my life!”
She turns to Sonic, rubbing her sleeve against her runny nose. “Why do you guys fight for them, when they probably hurt you too?”
Sonic clicks his tongue, thinking of an appropriate answer. “You put me on the spot there, kid. But… I’d like to think it’s because we exist to inspire people. Especially those as powerless as Writers.”
“We call ‘em Gods, but they look to US to provide escape from what’s probably hell for them. Make them believe in something bigger and better than themselves, you know?”
Sayaka’s azure eyes investigate Sonic’s as she tries to emotionally reach into his optimism… trying to decipher his logic.
Then she thinks of what she saw on that Dreamcast ride to the Ruins. The awe she briefly had when she saw Sailor Moon in the flesh.
Even armed with the knowledge of how cruel Magical Life is… just seeing that symbol of childlike optimism and heroism that brought her back to a simpler time was enough to bring her an unexplainable joy. It’s almost like that darkness washed away and briefly replaced itself with the belief that all of that suffering is behind her.
“Something bigger than myself…” She mutters to herself as that image alone softens her features. What became doubt slowly shifts into consideration.
The Prequels look down at the two once more, noticing Sayaka’s subtle shift.
“And that is what we need right now, Ms. Miki.” A Prequel suddenly proclaims.
“H-Huh?” Sayaka snaps her gaze upward.
“We already made our decision. We will not discharge her unless she chooses to. As we said, the Weapons have chosen her for a reason. She embodies an element of Creation, and it would be a shame if we were to lose that.”
“H-Hey, wait… I don’t embody anything!”
“You will find out soon enough… if you choose to join the Disciples. The door is open for you to do as you please, Ms. Miki.”
“You heard what she said, right? About how she thought about her Writer? She sounds more like a Metarex than a Disciple!” Buzz rants.
“Have faith in the Weapons, Sayaka. Like how Sonic has faith in you to be the hero all the Realms need.”
“Am I… just not a part of this conversation anymore?” Buzz holds his hands up, trying to get their attention.
Sayaka shifts back to her hand. Sonic has not let go. This mysterious little demon hasn’t let go yet… even despite knowing what she went through, he still believes she’s capable of some good.
“Last question…” Sayaka starts to say.
“For now.” Sonic chuckles. “I’m sure you still got a LOT, you chatterbox.”
“You’re the one spouting out all the speeches, man.” Sayaka gives a soft grin back, a sign of confidence Sonic has just been waiting to see from her. “But… why do you have faith in me? Y’know, after what I just said?”
“Because I know you wanna do the right thing at the end of the day.” Sonic tells her. “People need help, and you’d wanna help ‘em. That enough of a reason for you?”
Sayaka pauses for a moment.
People need help. Writer or not… trillions of lives are at stake. Who she saw on that ship clearly have ill intent that she has the power to stop. She feels something take over in her heart, spinning and weaving back together from Sonic’s faith and the optimism she briefly felt earlier.
She’s alive, human again, more powerful than ever… What she dreamed about back in the Law of Cycles about doing “more”, like it or not, the chance as come. Not just that, but it was given to her.
Can it really be true? Heroes fighting villains, heroes saving the day… is that still possible?
What does she have left to lose to find out?
“…I’d say it is.” She then states.
Sonic’s green eyes glimmer with intrigue. “Sooo… does that mean?”
“I’m in.” Sayaka replies, flipping her hand to meet Sonic’s palm, forcing the two into a weak handshake.
“Really?!” Sonic asks, fist pumping. “You hear that, guys?! She’s IN!”
“Very well. On one condition however… you and your Disciples will train AND teach her full-time, Sonic. You must overlook her studies.”
Now is Sonic’s turn for his pupils to dilate. “Wait, WHAT?!” Both him and Buzz react.
CHAPTER 16: WATCH YOUR STEP
Sonic is the first to step out of the Prequels’ chambers, eyes hanging low and his gloved fingers pinching the fur on his forehead. His gestures look like disappointment, but inside all he could feel is anxiety.
Buzz isn’t fairing much better, storming out without glance at Sayaka after she made her decision. On one hand, he is thankful he doesn’t have to drag Sayaka into his next academic semester. However, this isn’t the desired outcome either. As such, all the girl could hear from his distressed grumbles is “Boomsticks… we’re all gonna die.”
“What, is this all of a sudden bad news?” Sayaka asks, more annoyed than anything at everyone’s sudden change in disposition.
“N-No! Nooo! Uh-uh, still good news!” Sonic hastily snaps out of his funk, walking backwards to face Sayaka and frantically flailing his hands. “Just… I didn’t expect I was gonna teach you. Just train.”
“Isn’t training just teaching?” Sayaka shrugs, still not getting what the big deal.
“Tactical training. You know, fighting, strategy, I can do all that just fine.” Sonic replies, punching the air to prove his point. “But you gotta know more about where you came from, how all these worlds work… you know, studying.”
Sayaka squints with a slight grimace. She’s more of the one to sleep in class, only barely passing. And this is just simple stuff like math, or learning how to speak english… which she is suddenly good at now. Something tells her this will be a tad more complex.
“Every Disciple that isn’t you or my family practically came out of the Imaginite assembly line fully taught about the realms and Writers, and everythin’.” Sonic continues, pointing out to a large white tower on an island in the distance. Sayaka could tell that’s some form of a factory, and judging by Sonic’s words… it literally creates heroes.
“But those recruited from actual worlds have to be taught all that from scratch… and go figure, I taught nobody before you! All I had to do is get them all to work together!”
Sonic then points to another nearby island from The Ruins, showing off a stone castle-like Academy campus. Already, she could notice hundreds of characters assembling for another day of class with Buzz.
“Yeah… Tails told me that. A lot of these guys are born and bred here.” Sayaka comments. “But that means they should be equipped to teach me the basics, right?”
“Hold there, bucko. The Prequels said I have to teach yo-“ Sonic exclaims before interruption.
“They said you, AND the Disciples would.” Sayaka smirks. “Worth a try, right?”
Sonic shuts his mouth. Glancing away as he ponders what Sayaka just said… and smirks right back. “Right you are, kid. Alright, class is in session!”
“Let me show you where you’re staying, if you can keep up!”
Spinning on his heel, Sonic grins. “Lesson one begins… NOW!”
“Wha-HEY!” Sayaka exclaims, reaching for Sonic and grabbing only the air.
In a strong gust of wind, Sonic suddenly takes off with only the afterimage of a blue streak hinting to Sayaka that he has run off.
Without hesitation, Sayaka’s eyes narrow as her instincts kick in. Choosing to follow the streak, Sayaka blasts off, leaving a trail of neon musical notes to indicate her prior position.
Her legs are practically gliding off the grass, the blades feeling like they’re merely being tickled by her shoes aside from it being trampled by a human at normal speeds. Time almost feels like it’s slowing down with how fast she’s going. She always knew as a Magical Girl, her speed is increased when transformed.
But not only is she doing this in a school uniform of all things, but she has never went this fast before. Even as an ethereal entity in the Law of Cycles, her speed was nothing!
Eventually, Sonic’s streak ascends into the sky by the end of the first island of the Ruins, a gaping sea of clouds and sky stands between her and the next island.
For a split second, Sayaka considered backing out… but her body said no. Golden light clusters by her feet as they propel her across the distance, landing on the next island with a brief tumble before seamlessly using that momentum to pick herself back up and continue running.
That moment of parkour couldn’t help but provoke a hearty laugh of childlike bliss as she makes her way through the crowd of gathering Disciples mingling amongst each other after a successful mission.
“Gah!” Sayaka panics as her mind once again comes at a crossroads. She could easily jump across the entire gap (although that may be too much, even for her) or just walk around the gathering.
But alas, she instinctively delves into the crowd.
“Sorry…!” She suddenly cries out, ducking, weaving and trying her very best not to hit anybody. From what she can recall, she’s diving under Ash Ketchum’s legs, nearly tripping over Pikachu and narrowly avoiding an annoyed Thundershock.
She runs in front of a small knight named Ignitor, a fiery spirit encased in cursed armor. She tilts her head excruciatingly to avoid the giant flaming sword in front of her… only singing a few hairs on her head.
The startled encounter with the Fire Skylander causes her to almost trip on her feet, stumbling enough for her to start running backwards. She jumps and spins to regain position, leaping over the tiny Chibi-Robo and Forky… who didn’t even notice her as they resume their conversation over what constitutes as “trash”.
Just when she finds herself at the end of the treacherous tunnel of people however, she finds herself stumbled and whisked off her feet as the steps into a pile of orange ink… and at the exact moment a squid ascends from the puddle.
Slipping off and falling onto the grass, the squid emerges into a humanoid Inkling as it aims at her partner she was playing with. “Gotcha!” She exclaims as the aims her Splattershot gun at her playmate, a human-sized Transformer named Wheelie.
“Wheelie say it’s not today!” The Autobot exclaims, pulling out his own custom Splattershot and opening fire at the wrong target as Sayaka slowly lifts herself off.
As such, the poor girl is pelted with waves of orange ink. “No, wait!” She babbles before finding herself covered in the proverbial tidal wave.
Blubbering and involuntarily tasting the salty liquid, she wipes herself off and turns towards the two. She doesn’t say a word, inching away… losing the drive to run. Turning around and walking away from the crowd and trying to ignore the chuckles and teasing among the masses, Sayaka wipes ink off her face to see Sonic tapping his foot and waving his sword in the air.
He points his sword, spraying water on Sayaka and drenching her clothes in an attempt to remove the ink. Luckily, the hedgehog then holds out his hand, channeling wind to instantly blow them off.
“…Watch your step.”
A little side-story as I take a quick break from the main plot!
MINI-MISSION 1: CASE OF THE MISSING PUDDING
Another average day in the Ruins of the Golden Skylands. A place once home to the legendary Prequels, now housing the grand army of heroes known as the Disciples.
Tirelessly, they fight to defend the Fictional Realm. But while waiting for missions, you can find patient Disciples honing their skills in combat, travelling across worlds to find adventures of their own…
Or having a quick meal at the Food Court where Disciples can unite with friends and chat about their daily lives in and out of the battlefield.
“…And that’s the last time I’ll build something mid-brainfreeze.” Tails says to the Disciples in his table, concluding his story: His brother Sonic, Sayaka Miki, Kirby and Anakin Skywalker.
“I feel sick.” Sayaka winces painfully, not even wanting to look down at the cheeseburger she ordered.
Kirby meanwhile claps to the story rapidly, a gleeful joy on his face. Chances are, he didn’t really understand the story, but still wanted to be polite to the Disciples’ chief mechanic. His food not even present on the table, not even the plate… both victims of his ravenous appetite.
“I didn’t even know technology could even do that.” Sonic comments, eyebrow raised in both intrigue and disgust whilst holding a pizza slice.
“Neither did I!” Tails exclaims, drumming the table with his gloved fingers. “Nor do I wanna do it again!”
“Remind me to never sit with you guys again.” Anakin grumbles, already preferring Obi-Wan’s speeches about protocol and fighting defensively over the birth of Tails’ worst invention yet.
The disgusted aura clears however when a voice comes hollering from the distance, busting through the doors of the food facility.
“Guys! Guys! Guysguysguysguysguys!”
The one scrambling to the table in a crazed panic is Neptune, her pink hair unkempt and splotches of dirt smothered across her typically stark purple dress.
Falling onto the surface of the table before picking herself up again, Neptune breathes heavily and eyes each of the Disciples with a twitch in her head.
“It’s an emergency!”
“Thank you, a mission!” Anakin holds out the hilt of his lightsaber.
“You bet your missing accent there’s a mission! A big one!” Neptune pants. “Someone. Stole. My FIRST pudding cup!”
Anakain stands still for a moment in disbelief before slumping back in disappointment.
“I don’t know about you guys, but pudding doesn’t exactly sound like a big deal.” Sayaka says. “Just get one from the Sugarcube Corner over there.” She adds, pointing backwards to the sweets stand.
Neptune leans over to Sayaka, practically shaking. “I think you forgot the part where I said… my FIRST pudding cup!”
She reels back, lulling her head in distress. “The very first time I ever tried pudding… it was the first thing I ever ate after being born in that Imaginite Factory!”
Sonic blinks for a moment. “Wait, you still kept that?”
“You know what she’s talking about?” Sayaka then asks her mentor, who hums in acknowledgement.
“Course I do. I was the one that gave it to her.” Sonic replies. “After recruiting Neptune despite Buzz’s… apprehension towards defective Imaginators, I gave her pudding to remind her that while she was born with no memories, she’s still Neptune.”
“And it worked, she loved it ever since. I just didn’t think she kept it for all these years.”
Neptune then continues from there. “I keep it in my dresser, under the floorboards, in a safe, and in a glass case! It’s the Russian Nesting Doll of 10 year old sweets!”
“But when I checked today, I just saw old consoles!”
“It’s got a lot of sentimental value to the kid.” Tails huffs. “I know I would feel bad if someone stole my first invention from the 1980s!”
“And that was…?” Anakin glances in questioning.
“A weaponized VCR.” Tails holds out his hands. “Super badass thing. Shoots a Hi-Fi stun laser and the victim hears Elton John and the first act of Empire Strikes Back in their head for 4 hours straight.”
“Don’t say that movie’s name in front of me.” Anakin growls before turning to Neptune. “But still, you’re right. That thing’s got a lot of value to her, might as well lend a hand.”
“Then it’s a mission after all!” Sayaka rubs her hands and points at Neptune. “You got any leads, Nep?”
Neptune adjusts her hair and begins to pace the floor. “Weeeelll, whoever stole it must have a real hankerin’ for sweets. I suggest we interrogate any Disciple with a sweet tooth and make ‘em spill the jelly beans if you know what I’m saying!”
“I think we could do something a lot less time consuming than that.” Sayaka strokes her chin. “We have security cameras in everyone’s rooms… let’s just look at Nep’s.”
Thirty minutes later, the five Disciples stare at Teletraan-1’s records in the security office in disbelief. When putting up Neptune’s room, the only thing they see is a hastily drawn stick figure wearing Neptune’s dress on a piece of lined paper that is taped over her camera.
“…Oooooh yeaaaah, I taped that over my camera so nobody could spy on me. A Nep needs her privacy!” Neptune chirps as Sayaka faceplants on the keyboard.
“There goes that idea.” Sayaka grumbles before raising her head and putting her fist to her palm. “Alright, Plan B! We get Batman to analyze the footsteps!”
“On a mission.” Sonic then replies.
“Dark Knight Batman!”
“On a mission.”
“Justice League Batman?”
“Also on a mission.”
“Is there ANY detective free?”
Sonic looks down at his DEUS watch, analyzing the Disciples database and tapping his foot as he scrolls through the list of heroes with the Detective subclass.
“It really just isn’t our day.”
“We’ll do the interrogation thing.” Anakin concludes.
MUSIC: THE HOW WORKS – AVENGERS: ENDGAME
“Alright, here’s the plan.” Sayaka explains from an empty dorm. All that lies in the grey room is a table, a cup of water, a chest of “supplies” and four chairs.
“Anakin and I will ask the questions. Neptune will stand by. Sonic and Tails are monitoring the situation. Everyone clear on that?”
“Roger!” Neptune salutes, Anakin nodding with a casual thumbs up.
“We read you loud and clear, kid!” Tails replies from Sayaka’s watch. “Bring in the first suspect.”
SUSPECT 1: BEA
Sayaka looks straight into the eyes of the Pokémon Gym Leader, who is maintaining a stoic expression. “So… what kinda sweets do you like, Bea?”
“S-Sweets? Me?” Bea scoffs, laughing it off. “I keep healthy! I don’t… yeah, I don’t eat candies.” She tugs her collar.
“You don’t, huh?” Anakin chuckles, using the Force to pull something from the supplies chest. Flying through the air and landing into his grasp, he slams a damning piece of evidence to the contrary.
“Then I suppose you’d be repulsed by THIS, huh?!”
Glimmering before Bea is a sealed Wonka Bar. She gulps.
“Tempting… isn’t it? The allure of that creamy milk chocolate? All molded in fun little patterns? I bet there’s even a Golden Ticket inside!” Anakin uses the Force to lift the chocolate bar in the air, practically making it dance in front of Bea’s sweating face.
“Hey, if you know where the pudding is, this is all yours.” Sayaka adds further incentive. “Just tell us the truth.”
“Look, you got me, okay?!”
Sonic and Tails from afar share a high five.
“I LOVE sweets!” Bea gasps.
“Then you took my pudding!” Neptune leans closer to Bea with a suspicious and deathly glare.
“Wait, wait, wait… Nep, what’s the flavor of that pudding?” Sayaka asks, waving both her hands to cut the tension.
“U-Uh, vanilla.” Neptune then answers.
“And Bea… you like chocolate, but what about vanilla?”
“Oh… it’s okay, but I’m not that big of a fan.” Bea then says, resulting in Neptune drooping down in defeat.
So much for that high five as Sonic presses the mic button on the Security Room’s keyboard. “Just take the bar.”
SUBJECT 2: PAINYATTA
“You’re a piñata, right? You thrive off candy, even if you don’t particularly digest them, right? Just stuff ‘em in you so you can shoot it back at bad guys, right?” Sayaka asks, writing on a clipboard.
“So in theory, 10 year old pudding should hit the spot.”
“Well, amigo…” Painyatta lounges on the seat too small for his giant colorful body. “That part’s true, about how I collect candy as ammo… but spoiled candy’s another thing.”
“You don’t digest them, so how is that anything different?” Anakin shakes his head in doubt.
“Doesn’t mean I don’t taste them!” Painyatta groans in disgust at just the thought of a decade old cup of pudding. “And the idea of eating something older than my origin game?! I might as well be barfing something other than candy.”
Neptune rubs her hands, brewing a plan. “Then let’s put that to the test, eh?” She snaps her fingers, cueing Anakin to send something flying to Neptune’s hands via the Force. She grips it, earning a disgusting squelching noise.
“Eat this Go-Gurt and prove your case, fluffy!” Neptune menacingly dares.
“…How old is that?!” Painyatta asks with a sniff before pulling back. “Ugh! Smells like a wet dog!”
“It’s older than the Disciples itself! A relic of a longgone era! Born in a society where civility is but a fleeting concept, where barbarians reign and anarchy rules the nation!” Neptune yells, her hands stretched to the ceiling in a dramatic crescendo.
Before sitting back down and just holding the tube to the Skylander. “2004. This is from 2004.”
“Neptune, you don’t wanna do that.” Sonic advises, as Painyatta hesitantly reaches out for the spoiled tube.
“Anakin, get your Force powers ready.” Sayaka nudges Anakin, who silently nods back and holds his hands out.
Painyatta takes the tube and shrugs. “Fine. Whatever gets me out of here. But don’t say I didn’t warn you!”
And with a flip of the tube and an airborne gulp, Painyatta lands onto the ground and instantly grips his blue and yellow stomach.
“Oh… Ugh… Here it comes…”
“Fire in the hole!” Sayaka summons her cape and hides behind it whilst Anakin holds out both hands as Painyatta uncontrollably lets loose a barrage of wrapped candies from his mouth, speeding through the air like bullets.
Neptune ducks under the seat as Anakin uses the Force to halt as much candies as he can in midair.
“What did I tell you? WHAT did I tell you?!” Sonic shouts back through the intercom.
SUBJECT 25: KYOKO SAKURA
“What’s this getup, Sayaka?” The redhead Magical Girl asks, sitting with her feet up on the table and holding a piece of Pocky in her mouth. “Good Cop, Bad Cop?”
“Just play along.” Sayaka sighs, exhausted. “You’ll be outta here quick.”
“Kyoko, I know very well you got a knack for two things. Sweets…” Sayaka runs down.
“Guilty as charged.” Kyoko nods.
“…And previously, stealing.”
“G-Guilty as charged.” Kyoko winces. “Ah, shit. Is this the apple conversation again? Look, after you died, I stopped stealin’ from people, okay?”
“Look, I believe Kyoko.” Sayaka says. “She wouldn’t be lying to me. So she didn’t take Neptune’s pudding.”
Kyoko blinks for a moment. “Neptune’s pudding? Yeah, I took that though.”
“Wait, what?!” Anakin gasps.
Meanwhile, Neptune points her finger aggressively with bloodshut eyes. “YOUUUUUU!”
“So YOU’RE the no-good, backstabbing, double-dealing, red-handed, red-haired candy culprit!”
“What?!” Kyoko bites, cracking her Pocky in half. “You’re the person who told me to take it!”
Neptune’s jaw opens, her eyes dilating in disbelief.
“…Now it’s my turn to say what. What?!”
Kyoko swallows what remains of the Pocky in her mouth and shrugs. “You must be tired. It was two days ago, you came back from an overnight mission in that planet. Trenza…somethin’.”
“Yo, Kyoko…” Neptune asks, her weight shifting drowsily onto Kyoko, who pushes her away. “You got a real knack for hiding stuff… right?”
“I mean… back home, I used to store my stuff in an abandoned Church. Never got caught.” Kyoko dusts off her hoodie from Neptune’s drool.
“I gotta looooooot of consoles, and my new ones are back…” Her eyes start to lazily close before forcing themselves back up. “…WARDS compati… something.”
“Point is, I gotta store ‘em somewhere. But my first pudding cup is in there. Can yoooouuuu keep it safe for me?” She asks with slurred words.
“Uh, yeah sure. Where is it?” Kyoko asks, confused by the whole ordeal.
“And then you passed out after tellin’ me where.” Kyoko rolls her eyes.
“Don’t mean to ruin the storytime here, but it’ll be a bloodbath until we break this up.” Tails says over the intercom as Kyoko’s attention is redirected to Neptune receiving murderous glares from both Anakin and Sayaka.
“Ah, shit.” Kyoko grinds her teeth. This is not going to be pretty.
“Hey, so all’s well that ends well?” Neptune asks, holding her retrieved pudding in its glass case. “I’ll put atop my shelf next time! Because it’s not like anyone’s gonna steal it with how old it is!”
She excitedly jumps in her seat, sitting with the others in the Food Court table where it all happened.
“I just can’t believe I wasted the day looking for something you asked someone to steal!” Sayaka rants.
“Next time, get some sleep before asking someone favors.” Sonic tells Neptune.
“Yup, yup! Lesson learned! But hey, at least playing detective was pretty fun, right?” Neptune asks.
“NO!” Everyone yells in unison.
Life got in the way, but we're back on track!
CHAPTER 17: EXHIBIT A
The throne slowly spins back into its usual position, Mephiles lost in thoughts as his hands proceed to once again drum on its armrests. His facial expression remains stoic as the lights of his quarters slowly brighten and the static of his screen fades.
His mind flowing with information of the stories he just saw. Tales of Magical Girls and their hopes, thrust into a cesspool of despair.
Girls too young to be subject to such torture, treated like cattle and their hopes undermined. Even when salvation finally arrives, telling them their struggles were not in vain…
…Even that didn’t last long, as the world hinges on a cliffhanger with morality as skewered as the creator who gave birth to such a twisted society.
To him, it is a tragic true story, causing his eyes to close.
…But also ripe with the delicious death of innoncents, causing him to also grin.
Mephiles’ mind starts to drift, from calculations to endless replays of the satisfying loss of life on display. Twelve episodes and a film of girls falling into suicidal madness.
The mere thought bringing delight to the most primal part of his demonic Sentinel brain.
That’s when his eyes open wide, his pupils dilating a bloodshot green.
“Not again… NOT AGAIN!”
His fingernails scratching against the armrest, he proceeds to breathe heavily and his eyeballs shifting frantically from wall to wall.
“Damn you.” He stares up to the ceiling, desperately hoping whoever drew him on a piece of paper is somehow listening.
The door suddenly opens. Marching to his throneroom unceremoniously is Kamek once more, observing his wrist watch.
“The ol’ stopwatch is saying you’ve reached the total runtime, master! I’ll just take those discs off your hands so I can bring ‘em back to the archives!”
Waddling to the used stack of cases, Kamek proceeds to reach out for them, but not before a spear impales the ground between the two.
“…I’ll hold on to them.”
“Y-Yes, sir! As you command… sir!” Kamek babbles, stepping back in a cold sweat. “W-Why, sir?”
“Prepare a meeting.” Mephiles steps off his throne, grabbing the two cases containing the Madoka Magica series. “Because this… is exhibit A.”
MUSIC: LOKI GREEN – LOKI
“Exhibit A!” Mephiles declares, holding the case from a stage towering above all. A screen behind him adorned with glowing crystals and velvet curtains on the side display snippets, brief moments of Sayaka’s origin.
“An example of the Disciples’ hypocrisy! Indoctrinating a victim of THEIR cruelty! Of THEIR control!”
Watching the mad general preach his word are his fellow followers. Among them are conquerors, killers, dictators like him. Darth Vader, The Joker, The Master, Shao Kahn, all those seen as villains.
Villains who seek to break free.
“An innocent, unknowingly written to suffer as entertainment! Brought into the world to die!”
The howling speakers declare Sayaka’s last words to the inhabitants of the massive Outland island.
“I was stupid… so stupid!”
“Whose future renders her from corpse to pawn!”
“The question is, will you be able to stand up against me? You're having a hard time remembering things, aren't you?”
Images display of Sayaka’s untimely memory erasure at the hands of Homura Akemi, turning her into an unknowing cog in the Devil’s system.
“A child destined for greatness, turned into an insignificant ant stepped on by the shoes of those THEY see as benevolent!”
The crowd boos with renewed hatred, with renewed desire to see the empires of these so called “Writers” toppled.
“And now this very same child is going to fight against us, to protect the people that killed her! She has been granted power and is using it on the wrong side of the war!” Mephiles continues to proclaim to yet another rousing chant.
Turning on his heel, Mephiles observes a security recording of the Knight Ship, watching Sayaka squirm as Mephiles taunts her.
His charismatic grin evolves into a ferocious scowl, away from the sights of the others.
“The weapons surely must’ve made a mistake with you!”
“…No. They knew exactly what they were doing.” He huffs at his own misjudgement before turning back to the others.
“But I will not make the same mistake twice, my brethren! She WILL die, and with it, the Disciples!”
He holds out his axe to victory. “Because we are Metarex! We will transcend their labels! We will overcome destiny!”
“We will break out of our roles as villains, as failures! As mere foils! When we slay their protectors, when we find the Weapons… the Writers are next! And we will FINALLY discover who we really are!”
The crowd begins to roar out in a mantra, fists raised and weapons held high. Mephiles can see from afar a flurry of Energy Swords, Fusion Cannons and Snag Balls.
“Say it! Say it! Say it!” Clusters of his most devout followers beg him to speak more, a statement that every Metarex dreams of: A promise to dull the chains that bind them to evil.
Mephiles lets out a brief chuckle and whispers to himself.
“…Might as well give them what they want.”
He then lowers his axe, getting on his knees almost overdramatically. His face contorts to a shameful expression with closed eyes. “And with our freedom… I perhaps can be able to stop this cursed thirst. The desire to kill can finally leave me.”
“We will all… be cleansed.”
With this final word, the spotlight upon him goes dark. He opens his eyes, obscured in shadows as his expression twitches back into a sinister grin. His teeth grind against itself, chuckling…
…But sounds more like a supressed cry. Thankfully, it is too dulled by the cheering of the masses all begging for the death of Sayaka Miki…
And then the death of Sonic the Hedgehog…
…And then the birth of freedom.
My jaw hurts, but that won't stop me!
CHAPTER 18: THE HELICARRIER
Sayaka trudges through the grassy fields of the Ruins, still shaking off remaining water and ink from her previous fumble.
“Ugh, I think it’s still in my shoes…” She hops on one foot, turning away from Sonic as he stops with his arms crossed.
“Here we are!” Sonic grins, presenting his arms out to the location ahead of him. “The Heli-“
“Hang on.” Sayaka stops Sonic, holding out her shoe and dumping some water off before slipping it back on. “Okay, okay, where are…”
MUSIC: ARRIVAL – THE AVENGERS
Towering over Sayaka with a width longer than her own eyesight could register, Sayaka comes face to face with a behemoth of an airship.
“This here’s a custom Helicarrier! Given to us by the Prequels when the Disciples were established 10 years ago!” Sonic proudly proclaims. “Can hold the entire army!”
“And how big are we?” Sayaka asks, eyebrow raised.
Sonic begins counting with his fingers in super speed, mouthing to himself as Sayaka could barely keep track of the blur that is his hands.
“…Around 500 million.” Sonic declares. “And counting. Most are Clone Troopers, soldiers, and then we have generals like you and I!”
Sayaka looks back up to the Helicarrier and gulps, mortified. Great, she’s destined to be the face 500 million heroes? Once again, doubt begins to cloud her… and Sonic could already see that. He picks up on the subtle hints of her body language from the droop of her shoulders and the slight openness of her mouth.
Sonic tries to bypass this feeling by speeding behind her, and then pushing. “Come on, come on, get your ass in there!” He implores, running to drive her into the ship’s entrance, Sayaka’s feet skidding across the dirt.
Her shoes slide from grass to a glossy surface as she finds herself in the Helicarrier’s custom lobby: A gunmetal interior with blue hues, hologram guides littered across the floor littered with information and potential drop zones, and elevators littered across the walls.
Whatever isn’t an elevator are rooms labelled with different purposes. Such as “Registration”, “Cafeteria 1”, “Counselling” and more utilities.
And those are the rooms she could even see without being obscured by bypassing Disciples making their way to their rooms or next mission. She could see them holding paperwork, polishing weapons or talking on their watches.
Some she recognizes, some she doesn’t. But these soldiers can’t help but turn and glance if they even get a hint of her blue hair.
From the kind stares of something innocent like the Pokemon Trainer Leaf who replies with a gentle wave, or the almost sinister glare given from a Bowser decked out in body armor and a massive hammer… each acknowledgement only adds more pressure to Sayaka.
Meanwhile, she could barely pick up on Sonic resuming his little audio tour.
“…Believe it or not, this baby still hasn’t gotten off the ground yet. We never had a mission yet that requires the entire team. So this is where they pilot their own ships, Portal Room, or just to eat or sleep.”
Sonic’s eyes widen, snapping his fingers and pointing to the elevator. “That’s it! I know what’ll help, getting your own room!”
Sayaka glances back down to the hedgehog.
“What’s with him deciding what’s good for me and what isn’t?” She could only think to herself, annoyed. Still, she can’t deny, getting a place to sleep after all the chaos today sounds like a fantastic idea right about now.
“Yeah, I guess.” She groans, rubbing the back of her head. “Is there a room ready for me?”
Sonic chuckles. “Nope, but it will be in a bit. Come on.”
He gestures Sayaka to follow him an elevator on the left. Squeezing in, Sayaka and Sonic share the space with a small green gremlin looking creature in rags and a robot dinosaur.
“Fine day it is, hmm?” The gremlin asks, looking up at Sayaka with a wrinkly grin.
Sayaka gives an awkward grin back. “Well… it has been a day.” She replies kindly. “That’s for sure.”
The gremlin closes his eyes, remaining paused.
“…Who is that?” Sayaka asks, leaning to Sonic.
“What, you never saw Star Wars as a kid?” Sonic huffs. “Talk about uncultured. That there’s Master Yoda!”
Yoda holds up his cane to Sonic, his eyes opening. “Judging someone by their own upbringing are you? Knows some things you don’t, this child does.”
“Greaaat potential I sense in her, yes. But also, great fear.” He comments. “Raise her well, you must.”
“For a duplication, does the best of us not make.”
Sayaka lets out an awkward chuckle. “Okay, what is this? Some kind of psyche test?” She looks up to the dinosaur to get away from this conversation. He is currently reading some kind of newspaper… well, less so a newspaper and more of a paper mâché compilation of food such as Energon Loaf, Energon Cake and Energon Soda.
“…You hungry?” Sayaka asks.
The dinosaur nods. “Me Grimlock, very hungry.” He says. “Me Grimlock choosing what to have for lunch today.”
Sayaka nods, looking at the selection. “Well… If I were you, maybe go for the loaf. That seems pretty filling.”
Grimlock takes another look at Sayaka’s pic, letting out a soft growl in contemplation. He then nods, looking over to Sayaka. “Me Grimlock will consider!”
Sayaka lets out a brief smile and a nod of her head. “Yeah, I think you deserve something pretty filling, since you’re… like, a big fella.”
“Me Grimlock no… fella! ME GRIMLOCK KING!”
This declaration gets Sayaka to step away. “O-Okay, okay! A KING sized meal! Gotcha…”
Suddenly, the elevator door slides open as Sonic steps out. “Alright, this is our stop.” He says. “Nice catching up with you, Yoda. Grimlock.”
Yoda tilts his head at Sayaka, whatever he sensed in her intriguing him so. “My sayings, remember it so.” He declares as the door closes again.
Sayaka takes a brief inhale. “Is he referring to me, or you?”
Sonic stays silent for a moment, staring at the door and tapping his foot. “Probably to me.” He says. “Sorry, I shouldn’t have said that.”
“Hey, I just thought it was a joke! I didn’t take too much offense to it. Honestly, I probably should’ve watched Star-“ Sayaka tries to reason.
“I know, I know.” Sonic bites his lip. “Just… something’s got me thinking.”
Sonic ends with an exhale and turns on his heel. “Anyway, this floor is one of our room specific sections of the ship. And the first one here, is mine.” He explains, pointing at the door in front of him.
“The rest of my family got the ones next to me, there’s Tails, there’s Knux, Shadow, Amy, Maria…” Sonic explains, walking down the hall and Sayaka observes the decorations that adorn each door to give them their own personal touches.
From the laser burnt and steel getup of Tails’ quarters, the more pristine, Japanese oriental design of Shadow’s, each is like a glimpse into each of their personalities.
They stop though around fifteen doors in, meeting face to face with a door with no label, no decorations, just the same gunmetal grey as the rest of the Helicarrier.
“And this…” Sonic puts his watch to the door’s sensor, unlocking it. “We’ve been saving this one for you.”
The door opens to see a fairly generic empty room with the same walls and glossy floor as the rest of it.
“Uh-huh…” Sayaka steps forward as a orb-shaped camera suddenly descends in front of her, hovering in the air. “Whoa, whoa!” She yelps, taken aback.
“Please tell me that thing isn’t gonna spy on me when I sleep!” She asks, angerly.
“Oh, hell, no.” Sonic chuckles. “This is an extension of our main AI that governs the whole place, Teletraan-1. This camera scans new tenants, their whole personality, backstory, theming, your Character Code we call it.”
“It’ll just analyze you, automatically reset the room according to your tastes and it’ll be on its merry way!” Sonic explains before gesturing with a twirl of his finger to let the device do their work.
The camera hovers around Sayaka, specifically focusing on her head, analyzing her brain patterns and co-relating it with its interior files.
“IDENTIFIED: SAYAKA MIKI. FRANCHISE ORIGIN: PUELLA MAGI MADOKA MAGICA. SCANNING FOR CANONICAL SOURCES OF LIVING QUARTERS…”
Sayaka winces a bit at that declaration.
“IDENTIFICATION COMPLETE, BEGINNING RECONSTRUCTION.”
The camera leaves the room, flying off into a hole in the wall outside and docking as the small hole closes.
Eventually, the room around her begins to glow. The lineless realism of the room beginning to stylize itself bit by bit with the outlines and “art style” familiar to that of her world. The lighting and black lining across each nook and cranny takes effect as her wallpaper forms.
Pink replaces the grey and windows open up, coating itself with equally pink curtains. Her small bed begins to form in the middle, adorned with her blue childhood blanket from the days where she was alive.
The metal floor loses its reflectiveness, becoming opaque and wooden as mirrors and cabinets begin to sprout from a digital floor below her.
When all is said and done, Sayaka is finding herself standing in a near perfect replication of her original bedroom.
“See? Look at that, it’s like you never-“
“Change it.” Sayaka says.
“…Eh?” Sonic replies.
“I don’t like this. Bring everything back, I’ll do it myself.” Sayaka winces, holding her hands out. “I don’t like this at all.”
“It’s… your room, though.” Sonic asks.
“Yeah. That’s the problem!” Sayaka growls. “I don’t wanna… relive that! Isn’t the whole point of this supposed to be a fresh start?!”
She wags her fingers. “Bring Teletraan back.”
Sonic hisses. “Well… we can’t bring it back to default settings. But tell you what, I’ll get on the horn with Tails, and see what he can do to revise this place.”
“Just right now, get some sleep.”
“Hang on, maybe THIS’LL fix it!” Sayaka scrambles to an out of place control panel. Opening it up, she is greeted with a touch screen with a wide array of configurations. She scrolls through it, from air conditioning to even music, eventually she lands on a decoration setting.
“Hold it, Sayaka! Tails should probably look into this, you don’t know how it works yet!”
Sayaka doesn’t listen, tapping on decorations and then furiously scrolling and tapping for any kind of reset setting. Unable to find a quick way to do a full reformat, Sayaka slams the wall next to the panel… underestimating her newfound strength.
It cracks the wall, the damage creating a golden glow that creeps its way into the device and shorts it out.
“Wait, wait, no! I-I didn’t mean that, I…” Sayaka mutters, looking at her glowing hands.
Sonic sighs. “Just… rest.”
Shamefully, Sonic slips away and closes the door. He slides down and sits, stressfully putting his fingers to his temples. “What am I doin’ wrong? Yoda, what did you mean by all that?!” He scolds himself.
Finally got off my lazy ass to keep this ball rolling!
CHAPTER 19: A CONFLICTED REST
This whole day, amidst all the chaos, revelations and constant questions asked by Sayaka… only one thought is running through her head as she tucks herself in for the night.
“When was the last time I slept?” Sayaka asks herself, pulling at the aqua blue blankets of her days back on her earth: When it was possible to rest compared to the afterlife, where sleep is pointless in a realm where time is irrelevant.
Every aspect from the silhouettes of bunny ears and even a stain or two from years of loose can still be seen on the left side of her sheets.
As she slips in, resting her head on the pillow and pulling the blanket up to her chest, she takes a strong inhale of the room. Nostalgia fills the air as she does, remembering the good memories she had in this room.
The playdates with Madoka and Hitomi, helping Kyosuke with his violin recitals, the days she slept in instead of doing her English homework… every smell is another spark of reminiscence.
“Not like I needed those classes anymore.” She chuckled at her newfound fluent English dialect.
Like any moment that is fleeting, time moves on as other memories penetrate her mind.
The day she was practicing poses in front of the mirror for her Magical Girl debut, when Kyubey told her the truth about her contract, the endless nights crying into her pillow for selling her soul to a metaphorical devil…
…And now knowing that every aspect of her life, good or bad was a carefully orchestrated plot by a god only looking to see her suffering through for a million prying eyes looking to be entertained.
The thought tugs at her heart, actively ripping it in two as the weight of her reality crumbles around her and is called into question.
She desperately looks back to what Sonic said earlier, about why they protect Writers such as this… Gen Urobuchi.
“I’d like to think it’s because we exist to inspire people. Especially those as powerless as Writers.”
It only has her pondering now that she has the chance to be alone, and let her new surroundings sink in. If characters are meant to inspire and give hope to the hopeless in the Real World…
“…What am I supposed to inspire?”
Naturally, with nobody to answer her, the question is nothing but rhetorical. What moral is she meant to embody?
What sort of almighty life lesson are people supposed to get from her? Don’t make contracts with white alien cats?
Yeah, like that’s something that probably exists in the real world.
She shuts her eyes tight, thinking about her friends. Madoka, Homura, Mami, Kyoko, what about them?
Madoka. She became everyone’s salvation. Savior of Magical Girls around the world. The spitting image of the idea that one should not give up hope.
Homura. Persistence, willpower. Without her determination to save her one and only friend, Madoka would never have been able to become the Law of Cycles.
Mami. Companionship, togetherness. Even in hindsight, she was always selfishly planning to get Madoka and Sayaka to contract, it was all in the tried-and-true belief: That nobody should ever suffer alone.
Kyoko. Embodies ideals, and how one shouldn’t give up on them. That no matter how far gone you think you are, you can always pick yourself back up and do what is right.
Sayaka, Sayaka, Sayaka.
Sayaka’s eyes shoot open again. Not a single clue floats through her brain. All she feels like is an asset to them. A motivation driver to Madoka, a foil to Homura, a short-lived friend to Mami, and the one who made Kyoko to change their mind.
Is that all she is to them? A tool? That’s what she’s written for? No greater purpose than that?
Sayaka clutches herself in this supposed realization. Does she really have no place in her own story?
…Or is this not even her story to begin with?
She winces at the thought, trying to combat these thoughts with something different. Something new… something right in front of her.
She looks over to the console on the wall that she broke, the only solid reminder that she isn’t in her world anymore.
She ISN’T in her world anymore.
She repeats that thought in her head over and over, having the possibilities mull through her mind to ease her to sleep.
“Wakey wakey, sleepyhead!”
A new day greets her with the subtlety of a slap to the face as Sayaka jolts from her rest. “G-Gah!” She cries out, her usually smooth bowl shaped hairdo rendered into a frizzy and unkempt alternative.
“Oooh, yeah. You’re gonna need to brush or somethin’. Don’t wanna look like THAT on your first training day.”
Sayaka’s eyes slowly adjust to the light as she comes to register Sonic leaning on her bedframe.
“Luckily, you got a bathroom and shower to the right and clothes in the closet already.” Sonic winks. “Buuuuut, I got a surprise for you!”
Sayaka bites her lip, shaking her head and retrieving her signature hairclips from a nearby nightstand. “Alright, I’ll bite. What is it?”
“Well, I figured you can’t fight in a silly old school uniform or your pajamas, right?” Sonic brings up. “So, I talked with Tails and he designed a battle suit just for you!” He says with a grin.
Sayaka slips out of her bed as Sonic explains his gift, rubbing her eyes.
“Problem is… uh. We weren’t sure what to make it look like.” Sonic mutters. “And I didn’t wanna wake you up to ask about your fashion choices. So…”
Sayaka walks around to see beyond the bedframe, and lo and behold lying on the maple wood floor is what was prepared for her.
MUSIC – BEHIND THE MASK – SPIDER-MAN (PS4)
It is what appeared to be her old Magical Girl outfit. The blue breastplate, white underarmor, blue skirt and shoes, and of course the long cape that brought the whole thing together.
Sayaka noticed some changes, but for the most part the suit is nearly identical. Not to mention… odd to see without anyone wearing it, on account that she typically must transform to even see the uniform.
Regardless, all it does is gain a remorseful sigh from Sayaka as she leans down to feel the fabric. It’s just as it was, down the magical stitching that made it.
“Look…” Sayaka shakes her head. “Sorry for you know, last night. I shouldn’t have freaked out like that.”
“No, no. I get it.” Sonic explains. “It was a rough day. A lot to take in. Should’ve figured you wanna start over, not be reminded of… you know.”
“Yeah.” Sayaka nods.
“So… you don’t like it?” Sonic clicks his tongue. “The suit?”
“W-Well. It’s complicated. Can’t say I’m… not impressed.” Sayaka says. “But, I don’t think I can wear it anymore.”
“I understand.” Sonic says, looking down.
Sayaka continues to stare at the suit, arms folded. “Although…”
She reaches for the cape, holding it up and dusting it off.
“I don’t mind wearing THIS though. I always loved capes.” Sayaka giggles before going for the shoes with her feet, dragging them over. “These shoes look different too, what did you do to them?”
“Well, Tails insisted we improved the structural integrity of them. They seemed too soft.” Sonic explains. “So, he re-enforced them, and here’s the kicker, rocket boosters!”
“Oh, no way.” Sayaka says. “Well, then I gotta wear that too, right?!”
“Heh, that’s the spirit.” Sonic says. “Wear whatever makes you comfortable, we’ll figure out the uniform later than. Meet me in the lobby downstairs once you’re ready. Time for you to know what exactly you can do!”
With that, the hedgehog waltzes out of her bedroom, shutting the door and leaving Sayaka once again in her lonesome.
Sayaka looks down at her selected articles of clothing, while thinking back to last night. Her face morphs into that of conflicted emotion.
She still can’t figure out her purpose… But maybe her purpose is waiting outside that door. She looks over to a nearby mirror, getting a glimpse of her bad hair day for herself.
“Wow. I really do look like shit.”
Time for Sayaka to do more self-discovery, mates.
CHAPTER 20: SWORD IN THE SOUL
MUSIC – KING SHARK AND THE CLYRAX – THE SUICIDE SQUAD
Sayaka runs her hands through her azure hair, relishing in her first warm shower in ages. As she does, she can’t help but notice that any scrapes, cuts or bruises she faced yesterday have completely vanished. If anything, her skin is as smooth as the day she was born.
She holds her hands up to her throat, feeling for any lingering traces of Mephiles’ strangling prior. Not a single nerve of pain.
“Huh.” She says to herself. If there is one other trait she used to have as a magical girl that wasn’t her swords, it’s her knack for healing.
“Maybe this means…”
She bites her lips in curiosity before stepping back, her back hitting the marble tiles of the bathroom walls. She holds out her hand in concentration, trying to call forth her trusty sabers.
Sayaka reaches into her soul, mustering her willpower the same way she used to… but nothing. Her hand simply is reaching out to the rising droplets of water.
Sayaka’s eyes squint in disbelief as the spray of water from the shower proceeds to flow upwards before suspending itself in animation in response to her hand.
She blinks and looks down at her arm. Ideas rush through her mind, causing her to experiment. Sayaka moves her arm, concentrating on the sensation of water flowing through her body. As she does, the droplets follow.
“Heheh… no way.” She laughs to herself. Letting out a grin, Sayaka twirls her hand, imagining the water reacting to her movements.
The droplets follow her command, swirling in tandem with her mind’s vision. Eventually, they compress and combine into a ball of water as it hovers above her palm.
Sayaka looks into her reflection in her newfound creation. She always felt like she had some connection to water, but never everything this powerful.
“Haha! Yes way!” She laughs to herself, clasping her hand into a fist as it consumes the water… causing the ball to explode under the pressure, spraying water all over her face so violently that it rockets her head to knock onto the wall all the while blubbering indiscernibly.
“Gah!” She groans as she slumps down.
“…Let’s try that again.” She tells herself, lifting herself back up.
“Where the hell’s the kid?” Tails asks, tapping his foot impatiently.
“Probably getting ready, give her some time.” Sonic replies, looking at his watch.
“When did you get so patient, man?” Tails nudges his brother in response.
“What are you talking about, I’m always patient!” Sonic talks back, looking away.
“Says the guy last week telling me to haul ass to the battlefield while I was recalibrating my guns.” Another Disciple refutes, waiting in the lobby with several others: Peter Quill, also known as Star-Lord. His hands are in the pockets of his long, brown Ravager coat, giving a knowing smirk.
“Hey now, that’s an entire civilization in trouble there, buddy! I expected you to be up and at ‘em. This is just training day for her!” Sonic defends himself, shrugging,
“You think she’s really up for this responsibility, chief?” The eagle-like Skylander Jet-Vac asks the hedgehog. “She’s… just a kid. One not even made in the Imaginite Factories. For an untrained teenager to be next in line to lead such a military operation such as this could be…”
“Risky? Out of touch? A wee bit insane? Come on guys, have a little faith in her! It’s not like we can just exchange Sayaka for another one.” Sonic tries to assure them. “She’ll turn the war around; she just needs a bit of help!”
Hesitantly raising his hand is Abner Krill, the Polka-Dot Man. “I-I think she might have a chance.” He says. “We haven’t seen her in action now, have we?”
The Disciples around him give affirming yet hesitant noises with lax nods and shrugs, responding relatively positively to his sound logic.
Aside from Neptune who is the only one confidently nodding with her arm in a perpetual salute.
Suddenly the elevator dings in the lobby of the Helicarrier as it proceeds to open, causing Neptune to snap out of her state.
“Alright, people! Look alive, look alive!” She claps her hands. “Especially you, LOOK ALIVE!” She yells at Chop Chop, a skeletal Skylander who only looks at Neptune’s accusing finger in bewildering confusion as to how an undead skeleton can look “alive”.
Emerging from the elevator is Sayaka, adorned in her usual school uniform she came to Sonic’s earth in, just now donning tights, the shoes and cape of her Magical Girl outfit like she said.
“Wowie, that’s uh…” Star-Lord raises his eyebrow. “That’s an outfit clash if I’ve ever seen one.”
Sayaka makes her way down the lobby to greet the others. “Uh, hey guys… Ready to go?”
“What in writer’s name are you wearing?” Tails asks.
“It’s my… uniform?” Sayaka asks.
“Is it now…” Tails looks up and down. “I don’t think I’ll consider that battle ready.”
Sayaka looks back at her teammates, specifically pointing at Polka-Dot Man and his flashy outfit in confusion.
“…I-It’s thematic… and custom padded for battle.” Abner defends himself, frisking his costume.
“Fine, I’ll… pick something else later.” Sayaka rolls her eyes.
“Stop by my lab after training.” Tails tells her. “But Sonic? Take the floor.” He steps aside, gesturing to the blue Sentinel to take over.
“Alright! Glad to see everyone here for some extracurricular training, and thank you for helping our new recruit out!” Sonic waves. “Sayaka, you will come here to train with us and learn the fundamentals of fighting alongside us.”
“Meanwhile, you’ll go to the Academy on alternating days to learn from Buzz everything you need to know about the Fictional Realm. Deal?”
“Uhh, sure.” Sayaka nods.
“To get you started, first thing we’ll give you is a essential tool in any Disciples’ arsenal.” Sonic looks over to Tails as he holds out what appears to be a smart watch for Sayaka to have.
“I call it the DEUS, the Disciples Exclusive Utility: Small.” Tails tells her. “I designed it after a massive Gallifreyan supercomputer, used a shrink ray and slapped a screen on it, and blammo: A highly advanced communication tool, space-time manipulator, swiss army knife and cappuccino machine.”
Sayaka’s eyes glow in awe as she straps it over her wrist. “All of that on a single watch? Man, I’ve experienced magic and even this is on a whole new level…”
Tails chuckles with a cocky grin plastered on his face, finger tapping at the temple of his head-slash-body.
“I know, I know. I’m a bit of a badass super genius. Don’t wear it out.”
“But a DEUS can’t do everything for you. It’s still best you have a weapon, so we’ll start our next lesson here and now! Making a weapon!” Sonic steps in, holding out his hand and materializing his sword.
“Golden Ones have the ability to harness a wee bit of a Writer’s power. Specifically, their ability to create matter!” Sonic explains, holding out his left hand as it glows gold, forming what was once thin air into a Thermal Detonator.
Sayaka winces, looking at her own hand. “Well, uh… you see, I tried to make my swords earlier today. And I managed to… do other things but not make my sword. You sure I can still do that?”
“I was once a natural at that sorta thing, spawned like, 8 at once! Now I can’t even make one!”
Sonic taps his foot a solid three times before popping a question. “Well, your power used to come from your soul, right?”
“Yeah? What’s your point?”
“Well, you see, Sayaka… Your power doesn’t come from your soul anymore. It comes from here.” Sonic walks up and points to her head. “It comes from the mind, like any idea a Writer has.”
“An idea comes to their head, they put pen to paper and before you know it, that idea becomes real.” He explains. “The more detail they envision, the stronger the creation becomes.”
“So try to think of making objects as the same thing! Imagine it like… like… uh, a daydream! The more vivid, the more powerful it will be.”
Sayaka warms herself up, opening and closing her fists repeatedly as Sonic explains. “Wouldn’t that take too long though? In a fight like the one I saw you guys in, I can’t imagine thinking about things when you’re six seconds from death…”
Jet-Vac shakes his head, providing his own assumption. “You’ll get used to it. Sonic was the same for a time when he discovered his powers, but with practice it will become second nature.”
“Exactly! So give it a shot! Come on, let’s see that sword, kiddo!” Sonic urges Sayaka on.
Sayaka takes a deep breath and closes her eyes. “O-Okay then, here we go…”
Reaching into her memories and into the past, Sayaka tries to remember her sword and how it looks.
The black hilt with the trigger…
The gold trim…
The dual molded grey blade with a glowing streak of blue in the middle…
Before she knew it, she felt something fall into her grasp. Her eyes snap open as she holds her arm up, seeing a pristine blade as perfectly replicated as the one forged from the depths of her soul.
“I-I did it!” Sayaka laughs to herself.
Sonic couldn’t help but join in with a hearty chuckle and pointing at the sword. “See?! She’s already got this!”
Sayaka looks at the spotless reflection of herself and the Disciples behind her, her grip on the sword becoming tighter with determination. Now’s the time to stop acting like a damsel and go back to what she used to do back home.
“Alright, got any dummies I can use this on?”
Just a fun little segway to get myself back into the swing of writing Disciples again now that I have free time.
CHAPTER 21: TRAINING ROOMS
Sayaka stands in the crammed elevator as it descends into the training hall of the massive Helicarrier. Finding her small form sandwiched between Star-Lord and Jet-Vac.
Moreso, she finds her stomach being tickled as Tails’ bushy tails brush up against her uniform.
“You think… we could make this elevator a bit bigger?” She groans.
“Told you we should’ve used the elevator reserved for the big robots.” Tails says to Sonic.
“Or at least taken turns!” Neptune grunts. “I can barely feel my arms.” She remarks with a whimper.
Luckily the ride is very quick as the elevator lets out a chime, halting with the door sliding open. Sayaka gets a moment to breathe as the crew comes out with Sayaka being the last to stumble into the hallway.
“Aight, here’s the Helicarrier’s training hall!” Sonic introduces. “It’s got every facility we need to prepare to take on the Metarex!”
He walks backwards, gesturing to the passing windows showcasing many Disciples at work in their own rooms.
“We got stealth training…”
Looking to her right, Sayaka peers into the window to see a black room with menacing glowing eyes evading a Probe Droid’s eyesight. Then, suddenly the droid is penetrated with a katana, falling to the ground defeated.
The lights turn on to reveal a pitch white room with panels, a human-sized green turtle with a blue bandana and a big L on his belt poses with confidence.
“Looking good, Leo!” Sonic gives his thumbs up by the window with Leonardo bowing back before getting a glimpse of Sayaka. His face morphs into one of… confusion? Bewilderment? Sayaka couldn’t tell for sure, but whatever it is, it isn’t inspiring confidence.
“Problem solving, like disarming bombs…”
Sonic turns to the left to see a peculiar duo trying their hand at stopping a ticking bomb only mere seconds from detonation.
“Eh, I say it’s the red wire.” Bugs Bunny ponders, holding his scissors close to the exposed interior.
“No, pfft! You screwy rabbit! It’s always the BLUE wire!” Daffy Duck retorts, grabbing the bomb while holding his own pair of scissors.
“Red wire!” Bugs snatches the bomb, with Daffy yanking it back.
Daffy reclaims the bomb, wagging his feather. “Ohohoho, I’m not falling for that one! It’s the Blue Wire! And I’m gonna cut it!”
Daffy in a fit of overconfidence slams his arms downwards, losing his grip on the bomb as it falls to the ground and explodes, soot covering Daffy and Bugs remaining untouched.
Bugs reaches behind himself and spawns a carrot, munching into it.
“You were saying somethin’, Daff? Eheheheh…”
“You’re despicable.” Daffy growls back.
The panels shift away to reveal a door, revealing a black-haired man behind it with a clipboard. He shakes his head in frustration.
“…Sorry, Mr. Hunt.” Daffy coughs out, as Ethan Hunt writes down their lackluster result.
“I should’ve expected this.” The IMF agent scoffs.
Their disappointment would have to wait as Sayaka drops by, all three in the same state of shock as Leonardo was at seeing Sayaka walk by.
“Is… that?” Daffy asks.
“I think she is.” Ethan replies, causing Daffy’s bill to fall off his face and onto the floor.
“…You uh, sure she is Doc?” Bugs asks.
Sayaka is lucky she couldn’t hear them from behind the window. Sonic resumes his tour, opening the door at the very end. As Sayaka steps through, she bears witness to a much wider panelled area.
“In our case, though… we’ll use this! The general training room, so we can see all you can do!” Sonic exclaims. “Tails, if you please?”
Tails taps on his DEUS as several floor panels give way to reveal ten training dummies which sprout upwards in a line. The dummies themselves appear to be modeled after the standard B-1 Battle Droid, their thin shape and drooping nose-like head practically taunting the attending Disciples to take a shot at them.
“Alright, who’s up first?” Sonic grins, folding his arms.
CHAPTER 22: TEST YOUR MIGHT
MUSIC – I’M STILL STANDING – ELTON JOHN
“Okay, let’s do this…”
Sayaka hops in place, shaking herself off as she stares down the Battle Droid dummy. She concentrates power into her hand before thrusting forward. Unleashing from her palm is nothing short of… underwhelming.
A stream of water hits the dummy, lightly coating it in a blanket of moisture but nothing damaging.
“You ain’t doing it right.” Sonic wags his finger, walking in. As he steps to her side, another dummy sprouts from the panels of the training room floor. Facing Sonic, he summons his Sentinel Sword. The green lights lining the middle shift to a soothing aqua blue. “Think like you’re a hose, a hose with REALLY strong water pressure.
Sonic points the sword to the dummy, and just like that a powerful rush of water erupts from it and snaps the dummy off its post, falling to the ground and crumbling to pieces.
Making his sword dissipate, Sonic gestures over to Sayaka’s dummy with a skip in his step.
“Alright, pretend you’re a hose… Got it.” Sayaka shrugs, summoning her own sword. Making it face the dummy, Sayaka clicks her tongue and cries out.
After a brief delay, Sayaka unleashes a torrent of water from her hand. The dummy rockets off its post, slamming into the wall several dozens of meters away and shatters violently into rust and scraps. However, the dummy wasn’t the only one sent flying.
“Waaaaah!” Sayaka is sent the other way, flying and crashing into the plexiglass windows next to the room’s door.
Hobbling back to her feet, Sayaka looks over to a bewildered Sonic. She gives a thumbs up shakily. Sonic gives an awkward thumbs up back.
“Alright, you can definitely pack a punch… even to yourself.” Sonic comments.
“Tell me about it…” Sayaka groans.
“Alright, kid! Let’s see what you got!” Anakin Skywalker ignites his lightsaber, spinning it tauntingly while his free hand beckons her closer. Sayaka anxiously holds her sword tight.
“Isn’t this a bit unfair?” Sayaka asks.
“What’s unfair?” Anakin tilts his head.
“Y-Your sword! That’s gonna cut mine in two!” Sayaka explains, glancing at the lightsaber worriedly.
“Will it?” Anakin grins, rushing forward. “Haaaah!”
Sayaka yelps, snapping into her defensive stance and bracing for the worse.
Sayaka’s eyes slowly open up to see her sword collide with the lightsaber. “W-Whoa!”
“All our weapons are more durable than you think! Now, go all out!” Anakin insists, jumping backwards for Sayaka to fight back. “Come on!”
Sayaka looks over to her sword, the metal seems slightly burned from the lightsaber and is emitting excess smoke. Still, it’s stable enough for a second round.
“Well, you said all out.”
Sayaka holds out her free hand, summoning her second sword. “Don’t say I didn’t warn you!” She then leaps forward, clashing with Anakin’s one saber. The two rebound off each other as Sayaka resumes with a hasty rush of swordplay. Anakin meanwhile expertly parries each sword strike, despite being outnumbered with blades. His aggressive dance counters every attack with a tremendous amount of what Sayaka could only guess with foresight.
The Jedi Knight always felt like he was anticipating her moves before she could make them.
“Take it from me, I’ve seen moves like yours before!” Anakin chuckles, performing a backflip over her and with a sweep of his lightsaber, disarms Sayaka.
He lands on the ground, laughing. “Cause it feels a lot like my moves!”
“Am I really THAT predictable?” Sayaka winces, grabbing one of her swords on the ground and clasping it tightly.
“Moreso reckless, always on the offensive. Don’t sweat it, it’s my habit too. But… you gotta keep me on my toes.” Anakin says. “You gotta rely more on- WHOA!”
Grazing Anakin’s Jedi robes, Sayaka’s blade flies across him. Anakin reaches out to the blade, suspending it in the air using the Force. Pulling it towards himself, Anakin notes it was JUST the blade that flew by. No hilt. Looking back to Sayaka, he sees the girl holding an empty hilt, fingers on a trigger near the handle.
“Did you just shoot… a sword?” Anakin asks.
“…Yeah. Why else is there a trigger on it?” Sayaka holds her hilt.
Anakin whistles, poking the blade. “Now THAT’S a neat trick.”
“Alright, let’s see how your Golden Power fares against my ring!”
Sayaka’s next tutor flies to her, glad in glowing green armor. It is Hal Jordan, the Green Lantern.
“Got it. So, Sonic says I have to envision what I want and it’ll appear. The more detail, the better.” Sayaka says, looking at her hand as it flashes gold.
“Yeah, so let’s start with something simple.” Hal rubs his hands. “Can you make a wall?”
“A wall?” Sayaka asks.
“Yeah, like a brick wall. It can act as basic defense.” Hal holds out his fist as the green ring on his index finger calls forth his willpower to generate a glowing green monolith in front of him.
“Okay. Brick wall. Bricks… bricks. With uh, with RED bricks! Yeah, red bricks! And cement and stuff…”
Sayaka holds out her hand, closing her eyes and pulls her arm upward. Responding to her wishes, a brick wall comprised of red bricks erupt from a sea of golden light.
When she opens her eyes, they widen with awe.
“Holy shit, I just MADE that! W-Whoa!” Sayaka looks at the “masterpiece” she created with her mind.
“Good job! Now, let’s spice things up!” Hal says, forming a gatling gun in his hands. “Can you make this? A machine gun?”
“Machine gun… got it.” Sayaka rubs her hands together as they spark with gold. Opening them up, Sayaka pulls her palms away from each other, creating a ball of golden energy in the space between.
“Gun, gun, gun… GUN!”
In a burst of light… all that came out was a small pistol as it falls down.
“…Uh.” Hal remarks.
“Sorry, sorry! I don’t know much about machine guns! I’ve only seen my friend Homura use it in passing and… I mostly see her use stuff like this.” Sayaka says. “Guess my mind went off track.”
“We… got some work to do.” Hal nods, looking down at the pistol on the floor.
“R-Ready?” Polka Dot Man mutters, holding his arms at Sayaka.
“…As ready as I’ll ever be.” Sayaka gulps, holding her swords out. “Let’s get this evasion exercise started!”
“Like, it can REALLY hurt. Are you sure, you sure?” Polka Dot Man insists.
“Yeah. I can probably take it. Just go!” Sayaka nods, taking on his challenge.
“Alright… take this, uh… M-Mom!”
Igniting his gauntlets, Polka Dot Man releases a swarm of flying interdimensional circles towards Sayaka. As they soar, they singe the air.
Sayaka aims her sword at the dots to cut them… but instead the dots burn through her sword. They pass through the blade, melting at contact.
“Shit!” Sayaka exclaims.
Sayaka then dashes away as Polka Dot Man continues aiming at Sayaka. The dots pelt against the walls, but they disappear without harming the panels coating it. Whatever these walls are made of, they are reinforced enough to protect itself against even the most dangerous of substances.
“Ack! Ow… ow!”
While running away from the dots flying towards her, she finds some dots hitting against her body. While the sensations of pain were still there, her clothes remained unaffected. Instead, the dots sear into a mysterious blue forcefield covering her form. As the dots continue to pelt at her, the forcefield slowly shifts into yellow.
Sayaka looks down at her body and the glowing colors around her, eyes widening. “W-Wha…?!”
The shock of the revelation causes Sayaka to trip, tumbling down the floor and landing on her back. “Ugh…”
Polka Dot Man rushes over to Sayaka, checking up on her. “S-Sorry! Sorry! I KNEW I went too far! Are you alright?”
“I’m fine… I guess but a-ah…” Sayaka looks at herself as the forcefield fades away. “What the hell was that?!”
Walking up to the two, Tails holds his DEUS watch at Sayaka, tapping on the watch face. “Holtsman Shields in your DEUS. Modified with my own adjustments of course, picked up the idea after reading up on the Dune universe.”
“Forcefields that can protect the body from physical harm, but I implemented a few changes.”
“If it’s a shield, why do I feel pain?!” Sayaka asks, dusting her arm off.
“It’s a motivator. If you don’t feel the sensations, you’re less prone to defend yourself. These shields don’t last forever and if you’re careless, they’ll dissolve. Then we have to portal you back before you… y’know, die.” Tails explains.
“Has any of these shields dissolved before?” Sayaka asks.
“Oh yes, all the time.” Tails clicks his tongue, hands on his hips(?)
“Has anyone… died?” Sayaka then questions.
“Nope.” Tails nonchalantly says.
“No Disciple has died yet?”
“Not a single one.”
“Far from it.”
“In all of these years of fighting, not a single Disciple died? What about the Metarex?!” Sayaka continues to ask, baffled.
“None of them died.” Sonic then speaks up, walking towards the small gathering. His face is uncharacteristically deadpan. “I abide by a no kill rule. We don’t kill any Metarex, and we programmed our DEUS’ to get us to retreat before they have the chance to kill us.”
Sayaka’s face turns from shock to a tinge of anger. “W-Wha… That makes no sense! This is a-a war! A war without death is impossible!”
“I’m a talking hedgehog, you’re a girl who has died hundreds of times yet is still alive, he’s a two tailed fox, and he’s a man that shoots explosive polka dots from space.” Sonic explains, pointing at himself, Sayaka, Tails and Polka Dot Man respectively.
“Don’t tell me what’s impossible and what’s not. We don’t kill, just deplete the Metarex’s shields enough to get them to fall back. Got it?”
Tails hums, agreeing with Sonic. “Our goal is to make sure universes don’t fall into Metarex’s control. The more universes we protect, the higher our range in finding the Golden Weapons get before they do. And if we’ve been doing just fine without taking a single life. So… we don’t.”
“…Right.” Sayaka nods, doubtfully. “No killing.”
“What, do you want to kill?” Sonic asks, looking over to Sayaka.
“No… I don’t.” Sayaka exclaims, rubbing her arm. “The thing is I’m so used to people like me… dropping like flies, I just don’t think that just can’t be done…”
“You’ll be surprised.” Sonic replies.
He exhales, tapping Polka Dot Man’s shoulder. “Take five, Abner.”
“Y-Yes, sir.” Polka Dot Man gets up, walking away from Sayaka with a couple sad glances back to her.
Not the proudest of this chapter, as its pretty much just exposition. But the content in this chapter is a very important factor to understand how the Fictional Realm works.
A necessary evil, I guess.
CHAPTER 23: STUDIES IN CANONICITY
“Alright, pencils up? Papers set? Ready to go?” Sonic twirls a small staff in his hand, marching in front of a hologram projected towards a stark black wall.
Watching the hedgehog is Sayaka, seated with a pen and notebook on her desk as one of the few students in the Helicarrier’s Study Hall. Light permeating the room away from her are several other Disciples, casually observing Sonic with no supplies at all with them.
Almost like they’re here to review an old concept perhaps?
Sayaka looks behind herself to get a better look at the Disciples above her. She could recognize a few. Captain America, a Pikachu in a knit detective’s hat, Samus Aran… among a few she couldn’t decipher the identities of. Probably a little more niche characters than what she is used to.
…And they’re all looking down on her. Sweat beads drip down Sayaka’s forehead.
They’re not reviewing the course, they’re reviewing her. Of course they are. Wincing, Sayaka redirects her attention at Sonic’s exclaimation.
“Sayaka! Ready to go?”
“Y-Yup! Let’s do this!” Sayaka sits unnaturally straight.
“Right…” Sonic clicks his tongue, looking towards an image of the planet Earth on the digital display. “Now, I think a good way to start off these lectures is to… answer a question that you’re probably asking.”
“I… wasn’t asking anyth-“
The image of Earth slides to the side to reveal a stick figure with Sayaka’s hair and cape.
“What happens when a character, like you for example gets whisked away from her Writer’s intention? Your writer, a Mr. Gen Urobuchi obviously intends you to go on a very different path than what you are on now.” Sonic explains.
“So, dead?” Sayaka asks.
“Guess you can say that.” Sonic mutters back. “But you are now a Disciple. You are veering faaaaar off the canonical path of the Madoka Magica franchise. Your multiverse where your world takes place in can’t go on as planned.”
Sonic illustrates this by pointing the staff at the Sayaka stick figure, dragging her away from the Earth image as it shrinks away, making room for the cross-shaped insignia of the Disciples, letting the little Sayaka rest on that logo.
“So, what do you think happens to the world you left behind?” Sonic asks.
“…I-I dunno, the world goes on without me? And whatever sequel, or prequel, or whatever comes out of my world doesn’t happen?” Sayaka guesses with a shrug.
Sonic wags his finger. “Yes, but it’s not the whole story. Anyone of our volunteers would like to lend a hand, eh?” He asks the visitors among the crowd.
“Well, what happens, oooobviously is that a new multiverse is created to fill the gap your world could not! Of course.” A black haired girl with an intricate dress and long black pigtails says, rolling her eyes.
“Not liking the attitude there, Noire. But yes.” Sonic confirms. “The Golden Weapons that create the Fictional Realm still need a version of your reality that lines up with the story our creators out there in the real world wanna make. They exist to bring to life anything they imagine to a T.”
So your world becomes free, and non-canon. A new canon world is born automatically from the Weapons and takes the mantle.”
The image of the Earth splits into two, with two labels stamped above them: NON-CANON and CANON, respectively.
“And if THAT world for example becomes the center of a Metarex attack, an intruder shows up, just anything that goes against the norm… the cycle repeats again and again.” Sonic says. “And our job as Disciples is to make sure canon goes as planned, non-canon worlds are safe, and the Writers remain unharmed. You vibing with me so far?”
Sayaka doesn’t try to look at Noire and nods. “Y-Yeah, I think I get it. If something happens that isn’t planned by a writer, our world goes on and another is made to stay on course. Right?”
“Exactly!” Sonic winks, pointing the staff at Sayaka. “Now, lesson two!”
Slapping her books and DVD cases on the table, Sayaka sits down amidst the silent integrity of the Ruins’ library.
“EXCUSE ME! DO YOU HAVE A SPARE COPY OF “A LOOK INTO AVIAN ESPIONAGE” BY ANY CHANCE?!” A voice squawks from the direction of the library table. Sayaka, annoyed turns that direction to encounter a loud red and blue parrot speaking to a small spherical purple man in a suit at the librarian’s desk.
“Mmm, yes Mr. Iago. You will find it in the eighth aisle, fifth row.” The far more subdued voice nods.
“THANKS, YOU’RE A DOLL!” The parrot squawks back, flapping away to his directed location.
“I bet he’s pleasant to be around.” Sayaka shakes her head, pulling out the first textbook. It is hefty, bigger than any textbook Sayaka has ever seen back in Mitakihara.
She dusts off the cover and eyes the title.
“Studies in Canonicity, by Vector Prime…” She recites to herself. Opening to the first chapter, skimming the table of contents, Sayaka recites the first few words.
“What we know as fiction lies within the eyes of the one writing it. They decide who lives, who dies and the events that surround each and every world in the Fictional Realm. All fiction unless unbound adheres to the timeline the Writer of the world decrees as true. This is called canon…”
“Yeah, that’s pretty obvious.” Sayaka shrugs, combing through a few pages. “I get it, I get it, I get it…”
“Non-canon events can become its own universe, whatever a writer makes that they decree is non-canon becomes a canon in of itself and its own world, yadda yadda, canon can be passed down between writers…”
Speeding through the walls upon walls of texts and diagrams, one page eventually halted Sayaka’s speedread.
“Hold on… Divergent Canons of a Character.” Sayaka mutters the chapter name and begins reading in-depth. “Canon can be vastly different despite utilizing the same character and world as a base. For example, we will observe the multiple canon interpretations of the SEGA character, Sonic The Hedgehog…”
Sayaka’s eyebrow raises as a diagram shows itself to her, presenting three versions of Sonic that look far more similar to the pop culture icon in her world.
The first Sonic on display is one with a lanky anthropomorphic body, with green eyes. This seemed the most familiar compared to the pudgy, circular Sonic who has taken her under his wing. “The primary Sonic in which all other canons stem from, created by Yuji Naka…” She reads the caption at the bottom.
Next to him is a Sonic with a scarf and bandages, multiple spines and blue arms in contrast to the prime Sonic’s peach. “This Sonic, colloquially referred to as the Boom Variant lives on an entirely different island with a different, more cynical disposition. Developed by Takashi Izuka…”
She looks to the third and final Sonic. Expecting the Sonic she has met, instead he is furrier, with disconnected eyes and electricity crackling through his quills.
“Meanwhile the live action film Sonic lives on Earth with a human family, younger and more inexperienced than his alternate universe counterparts, creation overseen by Jeff Fowler…”
Her eyebrows furrow. Curious that this “Sentinel” Sonic that the Disciples adhere his orders to from the very inception has no mention.
Flipping the page for maybe an extension of the diagram, nothing continues from there.
Closing the book for a moment, Sayaka walks over to the librarian’s desk. “Hey, excuse me.”
“Oh, uh. It’s you. The new Golden One.” The purple librarian says. “A-A pleasure to meet you, Ms…”
“…S-“ Sayaka is about to speak, before being interrupted.
“Sonia? Serenity? Santiago? Sabrina? Stephen? Sam?”
“…Sayaka.” Sayaka replies back, causing the librarian to snap his fingers.
“SAYAKA! Yes, yes. Sorry, a habit caused by my autofill makes me assume things quite early. The name’s Knowsmore, Miss.” The librarian apologizes.
“Ah, well… Mr. Knowsmore.” Sayaka continues. “You think there’s maybe a book, orrrr a show? Game? Any archival… anything about our Sonic? The other Golden One?”
“We do have archival from the Sentinel Sonic universe, correct.” Knowsmore affirms.
“Great! Do you have… any details on the writer of that?” Sayaka asks, shrugging.
Knowsmore frowns. “Unfortunately, we do not.”
“…Eh? We don’t know the writer of our Sonic?” Sayaka says, looking back at her book. “Well, I know mine. I assume you know yours-“
“Rich Moore.” Knowsmore replies.
“…Right.” Sayaka nods, interrupted again. “And the book I read lists the guys who made the other Sonics. You think maybe Sonic knows, though?”
“No. He asks me all the time.” Knowsmore shakes his head. “I can never provide an answer for him. We could never identify his writer. No matter how hard we analyze his DNA.”
Sayaka tilts her head in confusion. Where did this Sonic come from, then?
CHAPTER 24: THE 199TH LEGION
Doors slide open, with Sonic, Sayaka and Tails stepping inside and walking down a long grey steel hallway onboard the Helicarrier. “So THAT was the Mess Hall, and this this the Clone Barrack station.” Sonic states, marching ahead of the rest.
Sayaka meanwhile can’t stop eyeing Sonic, even when she should be sightseeing the nooks and crannies of her knew home, the words of Knowsmore about Sonic’s unknown origin bugging her. “Clone Barrack, right.” She merely replies.
“Our Clone Troopers live here. Since they’re our primary class of soldier, there’s a ton of them. So, we constructed one special space for all of our legions to rest and train.” Tails says, noticing two Clones marching over to the Mess Hall.
“At ease, guys!” Sonic replies, giving a casual salute.
“How’s it goin’?” Tails says to the two.
The troopers salute mid-walk. Their move is stiff, authoritative and in perfect sync. The perfect soldiers. Each wearing a different kind of helmet, one being bell shaped and the other more round with two ventilation pipes protruding from the jawline, signifying their rank: Phase 1 and Phase 2 respectively.
Sayaka meekly waves, nodding back to them. “Hey.”
“Generals.” The troopers reply as they fully pass by.
“Many of the Disciples here are generals of their own legion of troopers. Some share a few, some command entire squads solo.” Tails resumes as the three take a left, going by sliding mechanical door after sliding mechanical door of barrack entryways. They eventually reach one door with the number 199. Sonic taps a combination on the keypad, causing it to slide open with a loud wooshing noise.
“…Unless you’re like me and Sonic doesn’t make me get one.” Tails mutters under his breath, letting the loud noise of the door opening block out his complaint.
“ANYWAY.” Tails calls out as the noise subsides. “This is the legion Sonic commands.”
“And the legion you will command too!” Sonic smirks, hands on his hips. “The One-Hundred and Ninety-Ninth Clone Battalion.”
Greeting them, sitting on a bench and reading a novel is Trace, his helmet off. Noticing the three Disciples walk in, Trace hastily puts down the book, stands up and salutes. Sayaka took notice of the trooper, noting the crescent moon eye scar.
“You’re…” Sayaka points out, remembering him from the initial rescue back at Station Square. “I’m sorry, I don’t think you gave me your name at all…!”
“Did I?” Trace asks, shaking his head, disappointed in himself. “Guess I didn’t think that was important compared to your own, general.” He chuckles, holding out his hand. “My designation is CT-9973. But call me Trace. I’m the 199th Legion’s commander and will help keep all of our men in line for our missions.”
Sayaka smiles, reaching out to shake Trace’s hand. “Well, thanks Trace. I’m gonna need all the help I can get with this! Jumping from working with five people to a couple million is uh, a tall order.”
“You’re not commanding millions at a time, General. Not alone at least. It seems daunting now but there are a lot of people like me whose job it is to ease that load, so you can focus on the core tactics of our missions. Trace nods mid-shake before letting go. “But I’m just one part of the battalion, allow me to introduce to you some of the other members of our team.”
When Sayaka lets go, Trace dusts himself off and puts his book back on his shelf. She notices Trace’s movement is a lot more loose than the other troopers, having a bit of a relaxed hunch. Abnormal for someone who is the apparent commander.
Trace beckons them over, grabbing his helmet off the bench and putting it back on.
“Trace only gives commands if he has the helmet on. Says it gives him a better sense of control over himself and his men…” Sonic whispers to Sayaka as they walk behind him.
“…Does it, now?” Sayaka eyes, eyebrow raised almost in intrigue. When Trace dons the helmet, his posture slowly changes. His stance is straight, marching with hands clasped behind his back as he thoroughly inspects the growing number of troopers he passes by. When he steps, she can sense the aura of someone far more imposing. It’s almost as if he’s a different person than the Trace from a few seconds ago.
“That’s… actually kinda good to know.” Sayaka comments, formulating something in her mind.
“Hm?” Sonic asks, looking up to the girl.
“Oh, it’s nothing.” Sayaka brushes off with a denying shake of her head.
Trace begins a rollcall of three Clones in particular. “These are some of the Star Players of the 199th. Lock-On, Pepper and Marathon.”
“Sir!” Lock-On responds with a loyal salute.
“What’s your deal, Lock-On?” Sayaka asks, observing his getup. Lock-On has a lot more apparatuses strapped onto his suit, like oxygen tanks.
“Lock-On’s the best eagle-eyed pilot in this barrack.” Sonic compliments. “You put him behind the wheel of a starfighter, or a jet, he’ll start a dogfight and won’t stop until the enemy’s shot down. And they will be shot down.”
“Sir, I’m just doing my job sir! I’m not THAT good sir! I’m decent at best!” Lock-On insists.
“He’s also incredibly humble.” Sonic adds. “Compliment yourself more man, you’re awesome!”
“Pepper’s my favorite.” Tails grins. “Demolitions expert, there’s nothing he can’t blow up. And I mean that in both ways, he’s really good at making anything into a bomb.”
“I spice up the battlefield, yeah?! That’s why they call me Pepper, they do!” Pepper grins, wearing a purposely scorched Phase 2 Trooper outfit. “Nothing gets Metarex running more than something going kaboom!”
“And lastly, we got Marathon. He custom fit his armor to be leaner, slimmer, faster. Makes him the best runner in a legion where everyone’s wearing bulky outfits. Great for delivering important payloads when my speed’s needed elsewhere.” Sonic nudges Marathon as they reach him. Sure enough, his Phase 1 armor is still there but his under armor is of a significantly slimmer build.
“It’s an honor to run for you, Ms. Miki!” Marathon nods. And nods. And keeps nodding.
“They’re a bit quirky.” Trace replies. “But when your general is a cartoon blue hedgehog, it’s something to expect.”
“I think building character builds morale.” Sonic says, looking over to Sayaka. “Remember that.”
“You guys are one weird ass army.” Sayaka laughs, shaking her head. “But… I guess I’m weird too.”
The two stay silent, standing together as they observe the Troopers together… until suddenly the fluorescent yellow lights illuminating the barrack shifts to a stark red.
“W-What the hell?!” Sayaka asks, jolting back to reality and looking around frantically. Lock-On, Marathon and Pepper get up and rush elsewhere. Trace turns to Sonic, Sayaka and Tails.
“Sayaka, you know what this alarm means, right?!” Trace asks.
“…I can only guess, but it’s nothing good right?!” Sayaka asks, looking back to Sonic and Tails.
“The Metarex has struck another world. It’s mission time!” Tails explains, pointing to the door. “Get ready to issue a battle plan, fearless leader!” He teases.
“N-NOW?!” Sayaka gulps, her heart stopping.