Laying Low.

“Well, here we are,” Mighty said, opening the door to his house. “Make yourselves at home. It’s not much but it’s home.”

“Well, it’s probably at least somewhat better than me and Alerak’s place,” Ekajra said. He was more or less right, though the house basically seemed pretty similar to theirs, only slightly larger. Which was odd, considering it only housed one person. The furnishings were simple, comfortable but not incredibly high-grade. There was your basics, a kitchen, bedroom, bathroom, etc. And one more room that interested Ekajra in particular.

He walked down the hall and peered into a room. Inside was exercise equipment of various types, fighting dummies, and more. “Ahh, I see you found my training room,” Mighty said as he walked up to Ekajra. “Yeah, it’s pretty good. I don’t actually use it that often, but it’s there.”

“Hey, as long as I’m here, could I…” Ekajra began, turning slowly.

“Go ahead. I’ll go check on the Princess.”

“Sweet!” Ekajra yelled, running into the room as Mighty walked away.

Meanwhile, Yin was looking around the house, as Mighty walked back into the main room. “I hope this is a good enough place for you to stay for a while,” he said as Yin walked up to him.

“Oh, definitely! I haven’t been in many common folks’ houses, and yours is pretty interesting!”

“Yeah, I guess echidnas are pretty good builders.”

“I heard they have some of the best technology in the world—does that include weapons?—hey, don’t pester Mighty-san like that!—I’m just saying if they’re gonna protect me, they’d better have good weapons—oh, I suppose you’re right…” Mighty was completely lost as he watched Yin and Yang have their little conversation. “Oh, that reminds me, speaking of echidna technology, Kajjy-san had a metal left arm. How does that work.”

“Well, that’s not exactly common echidna technology. I’m sure they have it, but I doubt it’s ever used.”

“Why’s that? It seems pretty useful to me.”

“It’s because of the ones who do use it, the Dark Legion. Years and years ago a group formed after the echidna council tried to control the rapid growth of technology, just to be safe. Some echidnas didn’t like it, and continued to advance their technology. So they got “kicked out”, I guess you could say, of echidna society. And now they’re bent on revenge, and want to take over the world.”

“Wow, that sounds terrible! So they’re trying to take over Mobius, like that Dr. Robotnik you always hear about.”

“Sort of. Eggman’s trying to take over the world to rule it, and apparently he thinks he’ll make the world better. The Dark Legion thinks they’re better than all the other species on the planet, even other echidnas. I’m not sure if they want to enslave or just destroy everyone else, but Angel Island is obviously their first target.”

“And that Ekajra kid is one of them?!” Yang asked, quickly reaching for her arm-blades.

“Hey, hey, it’s okay, he’s on our side. He’s not with the Dark Legion anymore.”

“Are you sure?” she asked, now back to Yin.

“Positive. I don’t think he even likes them in the slightest. Don’t worry, you’re in good hands.”

“Ah, good. I knew I could trust Kajjy-san!—Yeah, that was before you knew he used to be a bad guy…—Oh, you be quiet, Yang!”

Mighty sighed. “This is certainly going well…” Ekajra then came into the room.

“Hey, Mighty, you got a piece of paper and maybe, I don’t know, a pen?”

“Yeah, sure, why?”

“Oh, no reason.”

* * * * *

“So, you think you can do it?” A figure holding a gun asked.

“Honestly, have a little faith in us. We’ll take care of your little princess…” the other figure being addressed said, before walking away, his cloak twirling behind him.

* * * * *

“Take that, and that, and one of these!” Ekajra was yelling as he beat up one of the training dummies. On it he had affixed a crude image of Kage Tsume’s face, and to the side of him there seemed to be a few more faces of people he’d fought.

After practically decimating the dummy, Ekajra grabbed another and rifled through his “motivation” pile. He spotted a good candidate and withdrew it. “Oh, yeah, this’ll be fun.” He took the paper, and pinned it the dummy, looking at the simple face. “Heheheh, pretty to pay Bladey…”

You’re kidding right? That looks nothing like me…” Deathblade’s voice rang out in Ekajra’s head.

“Gah, shut up!” Ekajra drew his knife and slashed at the picture, cutting it straight down the middle, before rapidly pummeling the dummy to shreds. He looked at it, gasping for breath, and suddenly fell to his knees, gripping his head as it was racked by a sudden pain. “Agh, dang it!”

You can’t get rid of me that easily, host…

“Oh yeah, watch me…” Ekajra calmed down, taking a few slow breaths, and focused on something else. Soon enough, he’d suppressed Deathblade yet again. “Yeah, nice try buddy. My body. Not yours.” Ekajra got up, shoved the destroyed dummy out of the way, and moved onto a different exercise.

* * * * *

“So, how long do you think I’ll be staying here?” Yin asked as her brought her some water.

“At least for today. Depending on what happens, we might move you to a safer place. But hopefully soon you’ll be able to at least move about the city.”

“Oh good! It’d be boring to just stay in one place instead of looking around the city.”

“Yeah, I agree with you there. I used to travel around quite a bit before I came to the island and met Knuckles and the rest of the Chaotix.”

“So, you’ve know each other for a while?”

“Yeah, for quite a while. And we’ve been fighting the Dark Legion and plenty of other baddies for just as long. Though it’s not exactly been that enjoyable.”

“What do you mean?”

“Well, I love stopping them and all, but honestly I’m more of a pacifist. If we could avoid fighting I’d go for it. But when worst comes to worse,” Mighty smashed his fist into the opposite hand. “They’d better watch out.”

* * * * *

“Team A, get ready to move out. This is a stealth mission, so they hidden. It’s time to capture a princess…” the cloaked figure said to his small squad of troops, and they prepared to move out.

* * * * *

Remington stood in the room where the Ambassador and a member of the Echidna Council were talking when a, E.S.T. soldier came in. “Sir, I have an update from the patrol team.”

“What is it?” Remington asked.

“It seems a small force is approaching the city.”

“Can you identify who, or what, they are?”

“Sir, we believe…” By now the two government officials had noticed the soldier had entered, so he stood closer to Remington, whispering to him. He managed to keep the surprise from his face.

“Hmm, they must know of the Ambassador’s presence, or worse yet… if they attack, hold them off and request back up. But wait for them. There’s a chance they’re not just attacking. In which case they’ll probably be defeated quickly enough. Tell the patrol team their orders.”

The soldier, while slightly confused at what his commander was telling, left the room, heading for the edge of the city.

————————————————————————————————————

Previous Chapter.

Index.

Next Chapter.

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