Part Two: Mission to Motavia
(Suelo's house, downtown Camineet)
"For those of you just tuning in to Camineet One now, the Lord King of Algo, Reipard LaShiec, has just announced the coronation of his queen, Lady Alisa LaShiec..."
Eight jaws slacked, sixteen eyes bugged out, all focused on the television as the news announcer continued, "Not much is known about this lovely young lady, only that she is seventeen years old, and was raised in Camineet-"
Suelo turned the television off, then sighed wearily. "How could Alisa do this?" she asked. "LaShiec sent his enforcers to kill poor Nero... he made her father disappear last year... what reason could she have for marrying him?!"
"I don't know," Lutz replied. "Through the entire time we travelled with Alisa, she was quite sincere about killing LaShiec."
"Of course she was! LaShiec practically orphaned the poor girl!" Suelo clenched her fists, took a deep breath, then glanced up at Lutz. "I'm sorry, Lutz. This whole Alisa thing... it's just strange, that's all."
"It's all right, Suelo," Tairon told her. "This is just as hard for us as it is for you, too."
"Heya, guys?" Myau asked. "Maybe we should turn the TV back on- LaShiec might be saying something about Alisa!"
"It's all right, I got it!" Cutruss shouted, standing from the dining table. He turn the television back on, then sat back down just as the image of Alisa and LaShiec appeared on the screen, accompanied by the newscaster's voice.
"-tuning in, Lady Queen Alisa LaShiec's first proclamation since her coronation was an increased POLEZI presence in downtown Camineet and Parolit, starting tomorrow morning. Lord King Reipard has given this proclamation his full support, and-"
"What!?" Rainy shouted. "More robot cops?! This sucks!"
"I know, Rainy," Suelo said. "We'll be fine, though. Don't worry."
"And don't try to scrap one of them for spare parts," Janey added. Rainy and Suelo glared at her.
"I won't! There's nothing user-serviceable under all that armor, anyway." Rainy's eyes widened in sudden realization. "Oh, Mama! If there's gonna be more POLEZIs, I'd better go pick up Mister Lutz's robe!"
Suelo sweatdropped as Rainy rushed out the front door, nearly knocking her table setting over. "...I already told you to pick it up after dinner," she told the empty setting.
"It's all right, Mom," Janey replied. "I remembered to fix up Myau's blanket, because I'm the good daughter!"
"C'mon, Cutruss," Arturo interrupted. "We've got a shield to polish for Tairon."
"All right, Dad." The sandy-haired young man stood up, following his father out of the dining room.
Janey looked at Myau, smiling cheerfully. "Let me go get that blanket for you, Myau," she said, leaving the dining room. The only voice that was heard was the newscaster, talking about Alisa and LaShiec.
"-expected to make an announcement regarding the tax rate on Palma, as well as official statements regarding Governor Hope of Paseo-"
"Lutz, you said that Tajima knew something about Damoa, right?" Tairon asked.
"I believe so," Lutz replied. "He only brought him up once or twice during my training."
"Still, it's better than nothing. Hang on one minute..." Reaching through his pockets, Tairon took out a small visiphone. Flipping it open, he said, "I'm glad Alisa insisted I held on to this," he told them. The phone beeped as the warrior pressed a few buttons, then said, "Hapsby?"
"Bzzzzt. Tairon, is that you?" the mechanical voice replied. "How can I help?"
"There's gonna be more robots in town tomorrow. Think you can drop the Luveno off at Camineet Spaceport?"
"Camineet Spaceport? I shall try my best, but I believe LaShiec's robots are actively looking for our starship."
"Oh." Tairon's brow furrowed for a second, then he spoke into the phone, "All right. Mask all the sensor emanations coming from the ship, and try your best to give it a fake system ID number."
The visiphone hissed for a second, then Hapsby's voice came in loud and clear. "I shall endeavour to do so. ........One moment. Spaceport authorities are hailing the ship." Dead silence for a few seconds, then, "All right. I'm landing at bay 65, Tairon. Ask for the Maelstrom Rider. Sir, according to all transmissions from the control tower, all scheduled spaceflights for the day have departed. I'm filing flight plans right now- to Paseo on Motavia ex Camineet."
"Good job! We'll see you in the morning, all right?"
"Very well, Sir. Please be careful. Hapsby out."
The link went dead. Tairon closed the phone and put it back in his pocket. "Guys, we're gonna leave tomorrow, all right?" he asked his two companions.
"The sooner, the better," Lutz replied.
"Yeah, and the further away from the robots, the better, too!" Myau agreed. "So... all these half-empty plates of fish stew... it seems like such a waste... ^_^"
At Baya Mahlay, LaShiec and Alisa withdrew into the palace, turning away from the gathered crowd. "That went well, Alisa, my dear," he said. "Looks like the people have accepted their new queen."
"And if they don't, then that's their problem," Alisa replied. She laughed as she felt LaShiec's arms wrap around her from behind. "Now I know why you enjoy being the Lord King so much."
"Make proclamations, and generally lord it over the people of Algo..." He smiled cruelly. "And if the people don't like being lorded over..."
"Tough crap for them," Alisa finished. "The perks of being a queen..."
"...Or a king."
Alisa's laugh was a seductive murmur, followed by a content sigh as LaShiec gently turned her around, then kissed her lips. She smiled, then whispered, "I don't know what I love more, Reipard... you, or being your queen." She pretended to think for a second, then smirked at LaShiec and said, "You, of course, Reipard."
LaShiec chuckled, then took Alisa's hand. "And just think, Alisa... the best job in Algo, all the Meseta and luxury you'd want... all we have to do..."
"...Is take it from the good people of Algo," she finished for him. "Now, then, Reipard darling... take me home."
"I thought you'd never ask." LaShiec snapped his fingers, and seconds later, a massive golden dragon landed at the top of Baya Mahlay's tower. It snarled as it glared at Alisa, remembering the Flaeli she cast that scarred its wings.
"Keethrax! Keethrax!" LaShiec shouted at the dragon. "Show some respect, damn your eyes! This is your queen you're threatening!"
Irritated, the dragon's gaze turned to LaShiec, staring him down. Finally, the dragon relented. Keethrax looked at Alisa, then lowered himself in reverence. LaShiec climbed onto Keethrax's back, then held his hand to Alisa.
"Alisa, my love, your chariot awaits!" he called to her, waiting patiently as Alisa took LaShiec's hand and climbed behind him on Keethrax's back. "Now, then... to our castle in the sky!"
The dragon lifted off the tower top, arcing towards the now-invisible castle. After a mile's flight, Keethrax completely vanished from sight, as did LaShiec and Alisa.
Morning came, and with it the hope that the group of three would be able to find Damoa. Groggily, Tairon rolled his shoulders, then rose from the couch he had slept on. Struggling to get his armor on, he said, "Lutz."
"Zzz... Alys, we shouldn't..."
Tairon raised an eyebrow. Does he think about Alisa that way? he thought. No... he never shortens her name... He pronounced that Alys name differently, too. An old girlfriend? "C'mon, Lutz, get up. We gotta go meet Hapsby."
"Zzzz... Forget what Shorty thinks, Alys... What do you think?" Lutz smiled as he slept, clutching a throw pillow tightly to himself, curled into a fetal position. "Zzz. Chaz, Shorty, whatever..."
With a sigh, Tairon nudged Lutz and said, "Damn it, get up!"
Lutz's eyes opened, and he squinted, focusing on Tairon. "Oh, er, Tairon," he stammered. "I apologize for sleeping so late. Is Myau up?"
"I was gonna wake him next," Tairon replied. "So, uh... who's Alys?"
Lutz sweatdropped. "You know, I... I have absolutely no idea. Evidently someone I met a very long time ago, or someone I'll meet a very long time for now."
Laughing, Tairon clapped his hand on Lutz's shoulder, then said, "C'mon, let's go wake the cat."
Lutz sat up, gathered his clothing, then walked up to Tairon, who was kneeling over a cat bed. "Myau?" Tairon asked.
"Zzz... I love fish! Fish fish fish, yum!"
Lutz sweatdropped as Tairon picked Myau up by the scruff of his neck. "Myau, we're going to leave you behind if you don't wake up! And no fish!"
"What?!" Myau immediately woke up, giving Tairon a rude stare. "You're never leaving me behind- not while we've got Alisa to rescue and LaShiec to waste!"
"Right we go, then. Let's go get some breakfast, then head to the spaceport," Tairon replied. He set Myau down, then the three started to leave Suelo's house. They didn't get far before a gentle voice asked, "Mister Lutz?"
"Hmm?" Lutz stopped in the middle of the living room, then turned around. "Oh... Miss Rainy. If our commotion woke you, then I apologize."
"Oh, no, you didn't wake me up." The pink-haired woman smiled as she strode towards Lutz, a bundle in her arms. "You forgot your robe."
"Ah, yes, my Frade mantle," he replied, sweatdropping. Tairon and Myau sweatdropped as well- after the duel of spells he had fought against Tajima, they figured, why would Lutz leave his reward behind?
Lutz took the iridescent robe from Rainy, then quickly wrapped it in place around him. "There we go," he said. "Thank you, Rainy, and your family, for all you've done for us."
"Couldn't fight LaShiec without you," Myau urged. "Lutz, can we wrap this up? Hapsby's waiting and I'm hungry."
"Of course. Rainy, give Suelo our best. We'll be-"
The rest of Lutz's sentence was cut off as Rainy lunged towards him, kissing him on the lips. Every time he tried to back away, Lutz found his head being pulled back into place beneath Rainy's lips. Tairon and Myau groaned, then fell over.
After a minute, Lutz finally managed to pull away from Rainy. "Rainy, I-"
He was cut off again by another of Rainy's kisses. She murmurred in delight as she hugged Lutz, pulling him closer to her. Every time Lutz tried to pull himself out of her embrace, she only tugged him closer. Another minute passed before Lutz once again managed to seperate his mouth from Rainy's.
"Look, Rainy," he started to explain. "I understand you have thoughts for me, but we're in a bit of a hurry, so if you'd please-"
Rainy didn't even listen to Lutz as she gave him a third kiss. Tairon rolled his eyes and grumbled, "Geez, listen to her. It's like she's trying to eat a fruit, not kiss him."
"Oh, shush, you. Lutz needs to unwind a bit," Myau told him. "Her sense of timing's really bad, though."
"Look, I don't want to break you two lovebirds up, but we need to get going before the robots show up."
If they had heard Tairon, neither Lutz nor Rainy acknowledged him. Finally, Lutz pulled himself from Rainy for a third time, gasping for breath. "Rainy," he managed to wheeze, "Less tounge, pl- mrrmph!"
Myau groaned and asked, "How long is she going to keep doing this?"
Tairon had had enough. He set one hand on Rainy's shoulder, and the other on Lutz's, then pushed the two apart. "Look, Rainy, I'm sorry, but I gotta borrow Lutz for a few days," he said. "Relax, he'll be back."
"Aww, you're a spoilsport, Tairon," Rainy whined, pushing some wisps of pink hair from her eyes. "Oh, well. Come back soon, Mister Lutz!" she added, blowing him a kiss.
Once the three left, Tairon asked, "Wow, Lutz! What the hell was that about?!"
"I... I don't know," the Esper replied. "Tairon, Myau, I apologize profusely. I didn't think Rainy would... hmm? What's this...?"
Myau watched as Lutz pulled a decorated placard out of his robes. "Hey, I've seen one of those before," he told Lutz. "That's a certified road pass! Looks legit, too!"
"Or it's just a really good fake," Tairon added. "...She must have snuck that in your pocket while she was kissing you!"
Lutz sweatdropped. "Tairon, we can discuss this on the Luveno. Let's meet with Hapsby."
The two men set off towards the spaceport, with Myau bounding behind them. "Wait up a minute!" he called. "I'm still hungry!"
Rainy watched the three from the porch, sighing as her eyes lingered on Lutz. Hehe, he's so easy to tease, she thought as she opened the front door to head back inside. Good kisser, toooooh, craps.
Standing in the doorway was a purple-haired woman, her arms crossed. "I said it before, Rainy, and I'll say it again," she told her. "God, you are such a kiss-ass."
"Well, you said you needed a way to get that road pass into his robe, Janey," Rainy sighed. "Besides, I liked kissing Mister Lutz."
LaShiec opened his eyes, sighing as he looked at Alisa, who slept next to him, her lips curled into a crimson crescent of a smile. You know, Ares, he thought as he watched Alisa sleep. It's ironic. You wanted your daughter to be queen of Algo. Now she is. First I steal your throne, then I marry your daughter. I've got everything I want, Ares. All thanks to Dark Force.
Gently, he moved Alisa's arm aside, then climbed from their bed. The slight motion nudged Alisa awake, and she whispered, "Reipard?"
"Oh... sorry to wake you, Alisa. Did you sleep well?" he asked.
"Mmm... after last night, never better." Alisa laughed, then continued, "Another perk of being your queen, Reipard?"
"Indeed." He watched Alisa climb out of bed, clad in only a pink silk nightgown. "I told you, you'd enjoy being queen."
"I already am."
The two bathed, dressed in their vestiments, then headed towards the castle's throne room, where a new throne had been installed for Alisa. "My dearest," LaShiec asked as he sat on his throne. "What shall we do today?"
"Hmm..." Choosing to ignore the other throne, Alisa sat down in LaShiec's lap, putting her arms around his neck and shoulders to balance herself. "You know, Reipard, I think we should increase the water tax in Shion. Those peasants-" She spat the word. "-are obviously not paying enough for fresh water."
"They aren't. Another..." He thought for a second. "Five percent should do it, I think."
"Six percent, Reipard. And we'll spend the tax revenue on platinum statues of ourselves in Camineet's central plaza."
"Ooh, I love that idea," LaShiec said. "Alisa, you are as smart as you are beautiful."
Alisa kissed LaShiec, then continued, "After the taxation, we'll send two more squards of POLEZIs to Camineet and Parolit. And then..." Her blue eyes suddenly blazed with anger. "We go to Paseo and we lean hard on Governor Hope. Demand more tribute from him."
"And if he doesn't, we bomb that precious shortcake factory so high there won't be enough left to take home as a souvenier," LaShiec realized. "Let's send a squad of ANDROCops to his mansion."
"Very well." Adjusting her position in LaShiec's lap, Alisa continued, "Reipard, dear, there's just one more problem..."
"Oh?" Stroking Alisa's face gently, LaShiec asked, "Whatever troubles my beautiful wife troubles all of Algo. What's wrong, Alisa?"
"There's the small matter of an illegal starship, commanded by three fugitives from justice," she cooed. "It resembles a commercial spaceliner, but it's painted in red."
"I see. What is this ship's name, Alisa?"
With a cruel smirk, Alisa told LaShiec. "The Luveno. And, you'll never believe this..." She smiled as LaShiec played with her Hell Crown. "It's being piloted by my former allies."
"Ah, them! I'll inform Paseo, Skure, and Camineet Spaceports immediately," LaShiec said. "If they see that ship, they'll take care of it. Anything to make my queen happy. And when my queen's happy-"
Alisa put a finger to LaShiec's lips, silencing him. She finished for him, "And when your queen is happy, her king is happy."
"Halt! Present your road pass!"
Tairon presented the pass to the robot guarding the walkway to Camineet Spaceport, while Myau and Lutz waited patiently nearby. The other robot said, "State your business."
"Junk traders," Tairon replied. "Based out of Uzo on Motavia. We've been meaning to get back to Motavia and deal with the natives."
"I see." The guard's optics whirred, then he handed the pass back to Tairon. "You're okay. Go on through."
The three got on the walkway, which took them to the spaceport. "Every time we come back here," Lutz said, "It always impresses me."
"Me too," Tairon said. "Hapsby's at bay 65 with the ship. Let's get going."
Upon their arrival at their ship, the three were again accosted by a pair of robot guards. "Halt! Please present your passports!" one intoned.
"Oh. Passports, passports..." Tairon groaned. "Where did I put those passports...?" Damn! I thought private spacers had free reign?
"Here you go!" Lutz said, handing two passports to the robot guard. Thank God you forged those for us too, Rainy, he thought.
"Where are you two going?"
"To Paseo Spaceport," Tairon told the guard. "Our flight plan's been approved and scheduled, I take it?"
"Accessing... flight plan for ship Maelstrom Rider. ...Yes. To Paseo Spaceport," the second guard said. "Passports check out."
"Here you are." The guard returned the passports, then stepped aside. "Pass on through."
"Thank you very much," Tairon said. The three boarded the ship quickly.
"Hapsby, let's get goin'!" Myau called to their pilot. "To Motavia!"
"As you wish. Activating engines... initiating takeoff velocity...." The ship shuddered with the thrust of the engines. "...Securing Ice Digger, Land Rover, and Hydrofoil... Vertical attitude initiated. Stand by."
Lutz and Tairon settled down into their chairs, with Myau perched on Tairon's lap. "Soon, we'll be back on Motavia," Tairon said.
"And face-to-face with Master Tajima again," Lutz added.
"Err, Sirs?" Hapsby asked. "There's a bit of a problem."
"What?" Tairon asked. "What's the problem?"
"Unmanned fighters have I/A missile lock on our vessel. Hailing...... they are demanding we land immediately."
"Screw that!" Myau said. "We're going to Motavia! We're not gonna let some tin can fighters stop us, right?!"
"Wait a minute," Lutz interrupted. "Hapsby, does this ship have any weapons?"
"Accessing... there are available gun mounts for ten weapons. All of these mounts are currently vacant, Lutz."
"Damn! How about shields?" Tairon asked.
"Nothing. No neutralization field or energy shields have been installed, Sirs. Doctor Luveno also did not think to install ablative armor. I shall try my best to break the missile lock, but-"
Just at that moment, a loud buzzing came from the ship's main console, acoompanied by a light marked "GENERAL ALARM" flashing. As Tairon looked out the window, he saw the cause of the alarm: One of the fighters had just launched a missile, its twin contrails lancing towards the Luveno as it raced towards the large ship.
End of Part Two
With their ship in danger, can the three warriors get to Motavia to meet with Tajima? Can Hapsby outfly four unmanned fighters? What are LaShiec and Alisa's plans for Algo? Will Rainy and Lutz ever see each other again?
Last edited by Snorb on Sun Mar 15, '09, 12:25 am, edited 1 time in total.