SD Gundam Fan Fiction ❯ Demon Nightmare ❯ Maze Cave ( Chapter 26 )
[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]
“Are you guys trying to get killed!?” asked Rocket.
“No,” answered Captain, “we are trying to defeat King EagleEye.”
Wheeler crossed his arms, “Royalty or not, I refuse to knowingly put you in danger.”
“Come on,” said Shute, “how dangerous could it be?”
“Well,” answered Hubert, “if you do manage to get pass all of the watch towers, you'll never get into the city. Not with those Doga Commandos guarding it.”
“Watch towers?” asked Bakunetsumaru.
“If we had a map we'd show you,” said Karisha
“Fine,” Wheeler pulled out metallic diamond prism shaped device. He pressed down on the top and bottom points causing it to glow brightly then open up displaying a very accurate and precise holographic map of Skylark. Everything from mountains to farmland to a forest and even the sea shore.
“Cool!” Genkimaru waved his hand through the map trying to figure out what it was made of.
Wheeler walked through the map, “Here we are in Dracion Village. And all of these towers are watch towers I have managed to find.”
“You've missed quite a few,” Raptor pointed out many more watchtowers all scattered throughout the landscape.
“You're losing your touch Wheeler,” said Dragoon.
He growled at his brother, “Shut up.”
“They are well prepared,” said Zero, “I'll give them that much.”
Joey scanned the map, “No problem. we just have to find the safest way to Imperial.”
“Zako. Zako. Huff…puff…I'm out of shape zako.”
“Look zako. The gundams are down there.”
“Do you think they will help us zako zako?”
“We won't know until we ask zako.” The two zakos carefully navigated down the mountainside trying to go unnoticed. Draco snapped his head up and towards the mountain. He snorted and looked back at the map.
“Be careful zako,” said Z1.
“I know, I know,” said Z2. A rock slipped from under his foot and clacked down the mountain. Capturing Draco's attention, the copper and gold dragon looked up again.
Dragoon noticed him, “Something wrong?”
Draco shook his head, “It's nothing Dad.”
Z2 sighed, “Too close zako.”
Z1 whispered, “Zako, hurry up will ya?”
“Why don't we just fly there?” asked Guneagle.
Lucky shook his head, “Demons have good eyesight. We'll be spotted in no time.”
“Perhaps a direct path through the forest?” suggested Haro.
Baku shook his head, “Too many demons and too many human and gundam remains.”
“Almost their zako,” Z1's foot slipped and hit a keystone holding back a boulder. The boulder came crashing down the mountain and into the village aiming at the gundams and humans.
Rex shouted, “Heads up!” The vine pattern on his body glowed a bright green. He held out his hands and lifted the boulder straight up into the air a few feet.
“Where did that thing come from?” asked Shute.
Skylar looked at the mountain and snarled, “Zako soldiers! Up there!”
“Oh great,” said Fleur.
“ No doubt there spying on us for EagleEye,” Captain concluded.
“I got `em,” after a few hand signs, Rex transformed the boulder into a round rock cage a sent it back towards the zakos.
“Run for life!” Z1 and Z2 jumped out of the way as the rock cage slammed into the mountain. They raced down the mountain with the unscathed cage close behind until it split in two a captured the Zakos. It then rolled back to the waiting gundams and humans.
Z1 stumbled around dizzy, “Zako-o-o-o. What happen?”
“I think I'm going to be sick, zako,” said Z2
“Only two,” said Bakunetsu, “Darn it. I was hoping there would be more.”
Z2 looked up, “Gundams! Please here us out.”
“Why should we?” snapped Rocket.
“You two work for EagleEye,” said Dragoon.
“You're just here as spies aren't you?” asked Wheeler.
Z1 pleaded, “Please we beg of you. We need your help zako.”
“You require are assistance?” asked Captain confused.
“EagleEye tricked us,” said Z2, “he plans to turn us into weapons, or armor or…or…building material!” he burst into tears.
“Lord Zapper Zaku, Lord Grappler Gouf, and Lord Destroyer Dom sent us to find you,” said Z1, “Please zako, we'll tell you anything. You have to save us. We'll do anything!
“We can't trust them,” said Zero.
Amy smiled cunningly, “I know on way to test if they're lying or not.” She walked up to the rock cage.
“Zako?” Z1 watched to human carefully as she placed her hand on his head and closed her eyes, “I want you to concentrate on the demons, okay?”
“Um…okay….” answered Z1 unsure. A pink aura appeared around Amy and the zako. Z1 instantly froze and Amy's eyes rolled back and she went into a daze.
“See anything?” asked Joey.
Amy answered, “ I see Imperial in ruins…demons…everywhere…roaming the streets…,” she gasped, “ EagleEye…he's planning…something…four fliers…Doga Commandos…gray…purple…yellow…blue…three more mechas…two are gundams…Commander Sazabi…Lord Tallgeese…Lord Kibaoumaru…were given demon power…increased their own…the Dark Axis is rising up…led by Zapper Zaku…Grappler Gouf…Destroyer Dom…and a…a gundam named Prisoner,” Amy started to breath faster as her heart rate increased.
“Amy? Amy! Amykira!” Joey and Techno pulled her away from the zako. The pink aura disappeared and Z1 collapsed against his teammate.
“What just happened?” asked Genkimaru.
“She used her psychic powers to long,” answered Azural as if it were nothing.
“You okay zako?” asked Z2.
Z1 was gasping for air, “That…that organic saw my thoughts. They should believe us now zako.”
“Release them Rex,” ordered Rocket. Rex snapped his fingers and the rock cage crumbled into dust.
“Okay,” said Lucky, “So you were telling the truth this time. Then maybe you two know the safest way to Imperial.”
“Oh, that easy,” answered Z2, “Just go through that cave zako.” He pointed to a cave entrance not to far from the village.
“Not going to happen,” said Rex, “The Maze Cave is as far from safe as you can get.”
“How come?” asked Guneagle
Wheeler answered, “The Maze Cave is full of rabid plant life, giant lizards who eat both flesh and metal, poisonous snakes that can kill 10 men in one bite, vampire bats, and any plant that isn't rabid is more than likely carnivorous. And besides, if you survive all of that, you'll more than likely get lost and die of dehydration.”
Shute gulped, “I'm with Rex on this one.”
Captain asked, “If such a place is so dangerous, then why did you enter the Maze Cave?”
“How did you know I went in there? I mean….” He felt his brother bearing down on him.
“You went in there?” asked Rocket and Dragoon in unison
“Only to get away from the demons, they will never go in there,” answered Wheeler, “Besides, it took me three days to get out of there.”
Thief died out laughing, “It…it took three days for mimic scout to get out! Hahaha! That embarrassing!” he fell on his back from laughing.
“And I suppose you know a faster way?” Wheeler snapped.
Thief sat up, “Thief know way that only take two hours. That shortest way.” He smiled a toothy grin.
“Perfect!” said Bakunetsumaru, “Will you show us Thief?”
Thief smiled, “Thief do it for friends.”
“If you guys want to go get killed fine by me,” said dragoon, “But I'm staying here.”
“Ditto,” said Rocket.
“Trio,” said Wheeler.
“Very well then,” said Captain, “That leaves, Shute, Zero, Bakunetsumaru, Fleur, Thief, Skylar and myself. Eight of us.”
“Try twelve,” said Techno.
“Huh?” asked Fleur.
“You left us out on your last adventure,” said Joey.
“So we're coming with you like it or not,” said Amy.
“Besides,” said Rex, “We made an oath of friendship to always help each other no matter what. Remember?”
“Are you guys crazy!?” shouted Doc.
“They are,” said Lucky, “If they think that they're going without me.”
“Or me,” said Azural.
“Or me,” said Genkimaru.
“I'm taking the safe route and staying out of this one,” said Rele.
Rocket couldn't believe this was happening, “Four humans, seven gundams, a pouched raptor, and a spirit. You guys a re by far the strangest group of fighters I have ever seen.”
“Hurry!” Thief dashed out of a bush heading straight for the Maze Cave. Skylar barreled out of the bush behind him carrying Shute, Azural, Genkimaru, Joey, Amy, Techno, and Rex. Captain sped towards the cave followed closely by Bakunetsumaru, Guneagle, Lucky, Fleur and Zero. An open field 500-yd dash stood between them and the cave. Both Chief Haro and Wheeler monitored radar in order to watch their back.
Chief Haro spoke into the communicator, “Nothing's after you yet but hurry and get inside that cave.” Wheeler spotted something, “Hide!” Captain and co. quickly dove into a nearby bush as some bat like creatures flew by.
“Is it safe?” asked Captain.
“They're gone,” said Wheeler, “Move!” Thief and Skylar led the way again towards the cave.
“Safe,” Thief disappeared inside the cave with his yellow lines illuminated.
“Wait up Thief!” Skylar ran into the cave after him.
“Both of you slow down!” shouted Zero.
“You pick up the pace slacker,” shouted Baku. The gundams made it inside.
Thief stood on a rock waiting for the others, “You guys slowpokes.”
Skylar was panting, “I have an excuse. I'm carrying close to half a ton on my back.”
“Hey!” shouted everyone on his back.
“We're not that heavy,” said Amy insulted.
“Whatever,” Skylar sat on his haunches, “Now get off.” Everyone on his back slid off.
“…11…12…13…14…15, Good, we all made it,” said Captain.
Guneagle shined his headlight around the cave, “Which way do we go?”
“Demon-less way,” Lucky snickered at his joke.
“Now that was bad,” said Joey.
“Oh come on,” said Lucky, “You can cut the tension with a-”
Azural screamed, “Demon!” A pair of glowing red eyes pierced through the darkness.
Shute quickly shined his flashlight on the demon, “Who goes…Lucky?”
“Ah-yow! Turn that thing down Shute,” said Lucky. Shute moved the light as Lucky rubbed his eyes, “Jeez, don't tell me my eyes still glow red in the dark.”
Thief jumped off the rock and headed in deeper, “Come on. This way.”
The group moved carefully through the maze cave. The first obstacle looked like a rock maze but thankfully, Thief knew it by heart and got through in a matter of minutes. Stagnant water pooled on the ground, fed by what was dripping from the stalactites. Thief led the way with his illuminated yellow lines out lining his black stripes and some or his red body. Captain, Guneagle and Lucky used their head-mounted lights to help see, Shute carried a dyeing flashlight, and Amy carried a glowing light ball of white light. Skylar brought up the rear, the purple crystal in his for head glowing.
“Uh-oh,” said Thief.
“What's `uh-oh'?” asked Shute.
Thief pointed at the bottomless gorge, “Long way down.”
Genkimaru looked over the side, “Hello,” His voice echoed down the gorge, “Cool.”
Azural tried it, “Hello-o,” her voiced echoed making her giggle.
Bakunetsumaru watched them, “Be careful you two.”
“Looks like were flying across,” said Techno, “How much can you guys carry?”
Lucky scanned the other side, “There's no where to land over there.”
Captain scanned it, “He's right. We need to fine a tunnel first.”
“Or a bridge,” said Rex.
A light bulb went off in Thief's head, “Thief remember now. Thief remember bridge further down. This way.” He trotted down the gorge with everyone else right behind him. They found an old wooden suspension bridge that looked ready to fall apart.
“You're crazy if you think we're crossing that,” said Amy.
“Only way,” said Thief, “Thief cross many time. Rock spire in middle, good jumping platform.”
Shute tested the bridge with his foot, “It doesn't look very sturdy.”
“No matter,” said Fleur, “we'll just fly across.”
“Not a good idea,” Rex was looking at the ceiling.
“if you want to fall to your death,” said Baku, “Be my guest.”
“You'll be flying to your death if you do so,” said Rex, “Look up.” They shined their lights on the ceiling revealing a moss like plant with thick vines and sickly orange flowers.
“I see no reason to fear a plant,” said Zero.
Captain's v-fin lit up and projected a holographic screen, “Don't you even think about flying across,” It was Wheeler.
“It's a plant,” said Genkimaru.
“It's a toric nethronin,” said Wheeler.
“Huh?” asked Azural.
Wheeler growled, “Common name toxic vine. If you get to close to it, it will grab and intoxicate you then eat you, organic or metallic. Wheeler out.”
“Great,” said Guneagle, “Now what?”
“We jump!” Thief made a flying leap to the rock spire in the middle then jumped again to the other side unharmed, “Come on! It easy!” All you can see are his yellow lines.
“You next,” Fleur pushed Joey towards the bridge.
Joey got nervous, “No, no, no. Ladies first.” Fleur and Amy pushed him closer causing him to step onto the bridge. It shook for a second then settled. Joey looked back at them.
“Well go on,” said Fleur.
“Traitor,” Joey cautiously walked across scared half to death, “So glad I'm not afraid of heights,” Joey said to himself, “Okay nice and easy. I'm not going to fall. I'm not going to fall. I'm not going to fall.” The boards creaked under his weight as he held onto the frayed rope. Joey the saw the rock spire marking the half way point, “Oh thank goodness.” He happily trotted towards it, “Ahh!” His scream echoed down the gorge.
“Joey!” shouted Amy, “Are you okay?”
Wide-eyed Joey sat on the bridge clutching his chest, “I-I'm fine. A board just snapped from under me.” He got back to his feet and made a mad dash to the other side breaking two more boards in the process, “Next.”
Captain took command, “In theory, anyone lighter then Joey should be able to cross on the boards that held him. Therefore it would be wise to go from lightest to heaviest.”
“So from Azural to Skylar?” asked Shute.
“Correct,” said Captain.
“What!?” shouted Azural, “You're nuts if you think I'm crossing this thing.”
“You're lighter than Joey,” said Fleur, “It held him up so it will hold you up.” Azural looked back at the bridge, audibly gulped, and walked onto it.
Lucky shouted after her, “Just don't look down!”
Azural's fear of heights came into play. She hugged her tail close to her body and slowly walked across. Not paying attention, she almost stepped through the gap Joey made earlier. She gasped, stepped backwards, then looked down, “Ahhh! I looked down! And there's more of those toxic things down there.
Skylar looked under the bridge, “Oh, prefect. Fall and dead, fly and your dead.”
Azural carefully stepped over the gap and made it to the other side, “Your turn Genkimaru!”
“Yeah, yeah I know,” Genkimaru placed his hands behind his head and causally walked across, “Who's next?”
“Amy.” Shute and Amy pointed at each other.
Amy argued, “You're younger then me so naturally you'll be lighter.”
“I believe in-” Shute got cut off.
“Say ladies first and I'll kill you,” Amy threatened
Shute growled, “okay fine, I'll go.” He shined his flashlight on the bridge and started walking across. After a few steps, his flashlight flickered and tried to die. “Come on,” Shute tapped the flashlight against his palm, “Don't do this me.” The light came back on only to start flickering a few seconds later, “Work darn it!” Towards the middle, the boards creaked and groaned under his weight. Then three in a row snapped from under him, “Ahh!”
“Shute!” shouted Captain alarmed, “Are you alright?”
“I'm fine!” Shute shouted back holding onto a board, “Scared out of my mind but fine.” The toxic vine's flowers glowed brightly as it creeped up towards Shute.
“Shute!” shouted Rex, “Pull yourself up! Now!” Shute looked down, screamed, then pulled himself up and ran to the other side and collapsed.
Thief nudged him, “You okay?” Shute nodded.
“You're next Amy,” said Captain.
“I know, I know,” she gracefully crossed the bridge, “Come on Rex!”
“Showoff,” said Rex. He walked onto the bridge and snapped a board about a quarter of the way down. He steeped back in surprise but kept going snapping four more in the process, “How weak is this bridge?” he thought, “Well one thing's for sure, the gundams are going to have trouble.”
“Your turn Princess Fleur,” said Techno.
“Here goes nothing,” said Fleur. She first walked backwards away from the bridge, then ran towards and across it at top speed. The bridge shook violently as gundanium hit wood until a board broke from the stress. Gasping, she reached out for another board but it snapped as well. She screamed and grabbed onto the frayed rope that held the bridge together.
“Princess Fleur!” shouted Zero worried.
“I'm okay!” she shouted back. After few deep breaths she puled herself up and away from the toxic vine that reached up for her. Not wanting to fall again, she dashed across to the other side.
“Be careful Techno,” cautioned Captain.
Techno looked at the bridge with a grimace, “Yeah, I know.” Techno slowly walked across jumping any previously made gaps. Gundanium landed hard on old wood causing the broad to snap. He jumped back and broke another one, “I'm gone!” Techno jumped the gap and ran on all fours to the other side managing to run over everyone waiting on the other side.
Shute groaned, “Watch where you're going will ya?”
“Didn't get scared did ya?” asked Genkimaru.
“Shut up!” said Techno. Two engines roared and propelled Guneagle and Lucky to the other side, their wings just above the rope. Zero hovered across right after them.
“Showoffs,” said Fleur.
Lucky smiled, “Can't help it if I got mechanical wings.”
Captain, Bakunetsumaru, and Skylar looked at what was left of the bridge.
“You know,” said Baku, “It's not to late to find another way across.”
Captain looked at him, “If we take another path we could get lost in her forever. I'll meet you both on the other side.” Captain stepped on the first broad which immediately snapped.
Baku couldn't hold back his laughter, “Been packing on the pounds their Captain?” Captain groaned, shook his head, and stepped over to the second broad. A few steps later, another broad broke causing him to step back and break another one Captain then jumped the gap and ran to the rock spire breaking plenty more in the process. After regaining himself, Captain started on the second half and once again, found himself jumping back and forth as plank after plank broke. Somehow, he made it without falling.
“Are you okay?” asked Shute.
Captain nodded, “I am just fine Shute.”
Skylar nudged Baku towards the bridge, “Your turn.”
“Here goes nothing,” Bakunetsumaru, made a flying leap and landed in the middle of the bridge causing the entire thing to snap from under him, “AHHHH! I'M GOING TO DIE!” Baku held on for dear life as the bridge swung down and smacked against the rock spire, “Oh, thank you God. Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you.” He held tightly onto the rope and looked up. Then he noticed just how close he was to the toxic vine, “Oh, shit!” Baku scrambled up the bridge and onto the rock spire just before the ravenous plant grabbed him.
“Are you okay Bakunetsumaru?” asked Zero.
Bakunetsu stood up, “I'm fine, I think.” His foot brushed by Shute's forgotten flashlight, “Hm?” He picked up the flashlight, and gently tapped it causing it to turn back on. He then made two flying leaps and crossed the second bridge, “Here, Shute. You dropped this.” He handed him the flashlight.
Skylar looked over the edge and watched the toxic vine tear down what remained of the bridge. He then looked up at the other toxic vine and gulped.
“Hurry up Skylar!” shouted Fleur.
“Coming!” Skylar made a flying leap to the rock spire but only managed to grab it with his front paws. After puling himself up, he made another leap but this time, landed square in the middle of the second bridge causing it the break on two. Howling, Skylar plummeted to the waiting plant below.
“NO!” Everyone, look over the edge trying to see him.
“Where is he?” asked Guneagle.
“Skylar get back -” Captain was cut off by and energy blast that shot right in front of his face. They heard Skylar snarling a he fought off the toxic plant. Then the snarling stopped and time stood still.
Fleur eyes shrunk in worry, “Skylar!”
“I'm okay!” Skylar's voice echoed, “Keep going! I'll meet you up ahead!”
“Too close,” said Shute.
Thief trotted into another tunnel, “This way.”
Mile after mile they trekked through the seeming endless Maze Cave. The only real dangers they encountered were some bats and a couple of slime pits they had to jump. After what felt like forever, the ground shook violently under their feet. Everyone immediately looked at Rex. Rex held up his hands in defense, “Wasn't me.” The ground shook again knocking a few off balance. Captain looked around, “Is their always seismic activity around here?”
Techno shrugged, “I don't know.”
Chief Haro came up on screen, “Everyone watch your step! You're standing on an active volcano!”
“What?!” asked Amy, “You didn't tell us there's a volcano in here!”
“Thief no know,” he said back. Steam jets erupted from the fissures caused by the earthquake. Pressure built up and cracked the surface allowing more steam to escape.
“Be careful everyone,” said Captain, “the steam jest are at temperatures over 300 degrees.” The cave quaked again and the steam erupted even more violently. Unable to withstand any more pressure, the ground beneath them broke and rose at sharp angles. All non-flyers scrambled for higher ground as the fliers hovered just above them. The angry earth shook again knocking many off balance and causing several rocks to crash down from above.
“Everyone heads up and hold on!” ordered Captain.
“Hold on?” asked Joey, “To what?” Captain took out his extending v-rod and jammed both ends into opposite sides of the cave. Techno, Rex, and Baku held onto on end while Amy, Joey, and Shute grabbed the other end. Genkimaru and Azural reached up for the v-rod but the floor sifted again and a jagged rock leapt up in front of them as another came crashing down through the floor revealing a river of molten lava. The two kid gundams tried to scramble away from the lava but another rock fell and broke the floor from under them.
“Hang on!” Zero shot towards the kids and grabbed them just before they hit the lava.
“Thank you Zero,” said Azural.
Genkimaru looked up, “Look out!” A boulder dislodged itself and hurtled towards them. With no time to react, the boulder struck Zero out of the air.
“Zero!” Fleur, Guneagle, and Lucky shouted. The boulder slammed into the lava river but resurfaced just in time to catch Zero, Genkimaru, and Azural.
“They're goners,” said Rex
“The rock caught them,” said Shute, they could still be alive.” The angry earth violently shook again, causing a cave in and forced the fliers out of the air. They reached for the v-rod but missed and landed on the rock rafts. On boulder smashed into the v-rod breaking it in two and forcing everyone else to ride rock rafts in the raging lava river.
“Captain! Captain! Come in Captain Gundam! Do you read me?” Chief Haro frantically shouted into the communicator, “Oh, no. They're not responding. Captain! Shute! Guneagle! Anybody, please answer!”
Wheeler growled at the two zakos, “You better not have sent them to an early grave.” The two zakos gulped nervously, “We're on your side now zako.”
“We are going to die!” shouted Techno, clinging to the rock raft.
“Dude calm down!” shouted Lucky, “These rocks contain gundanium! They're not going to melt anytime soon and neither are we.”
“Easy for you to say,” said Amy.
“Calm down?” asked Baku, “How are we suppose to calm down. We're in a volcano! We could melt at anytime.” The lava river swelled and pushed them further down stream. Guneagle and Lucky's raft surged ahead followed by Baku's then Fleur and Amy's; Shute and Joey's tailed them and Captain, Techno, and Rex's brought up the rear. The raging river turned into a roller coaster as it threw them around tight turns, tossed them in to the air and back onto their rafts, and sent them spinning every so often.
Fleur looked around frantic, “Where's Zero and Azural and Genkimaru?”
Captain tried to scan, “I am unable to pick up their signal. There is to much interference.”
“Rex!” Joey shouted, “Pull yourself together and get us out of here!”
“I'm trying,” the green vine pattern on Rex's body glowed brightly as he tried to use his elemental power, “This heat's sapping my energy.”
Guneagle heard a rushing noise and looked over his shoulder, “Lava fall!”
“A what?” asked Bakunetsu.
Guneagle explained, “Like a water fall, but with lava.”
Amy shouted, “What are you fliers waiting for? Save us!”
“We can't carry all of you,” said Fleur.
Demonico took over Lucky's body, “I'm not staying here to fry. Come on bro.” He grabbed Guneagle and disappeared into the shadows.
“I'm with him,” Joey pulled out a collapsible hover board and jumped on, “Come on Shute. He pulled Shute onto the board and darted into small cave.
Baku spied another cave, “Later!” He jumped into it.
“Hey! Wait for us!” Amy held onto Fleur as she flew after Bakunetsumaru.
“Don't leave us!” shouted Techno.
Rex growled, “Some friends they are.”
Captain saw a tunnel near the lava fall, “Listen up you two, we need to time our jump just right if we're going to make it.” The raft sailed closer and closer to the lava fall, “Ready…,” Techno and Rex grabbed onto captain's shoulders, “Now!” They jumped of the raft and into the tunnel. After a minor stumble, Captain, Techno, and Rex climbed into the tunnel as their raft along with the others fell over the falls, “we made it!”
“Oh thank God,” breathed Rex relived.
Techno looked into the dark cave, “Now what?”
Captain turned on his head-mounted light, “We find the others.” They walked into the darkness as the lava lake bubbled and spat up rocks and steam. On it's shore were two gundams trying to wake the third.
Captain turned on his head-mounted light, “We find the others.” They walked into the darkness as the lava lake bubbled and spat up rocks and steam. On it's shore were two gundams trying to wake the third.
“Zero? Zero! Zero wake up!”
“Come on up and at `em!”
Zero moaned in pain and shook his head, “Wha-where are we?”
“Inside a volcano,” said Genkimaru.
Azural looked down at the knight, “Are you okay?”
“I could be better,” Zero began to hover and looked around the lava filled chamber. Everyone else's rock rafts floated in the boiling liquid and lava was occasionally spat into the air, “Where's everybody else?”
Genki shrugged, “Don't know. We floated down here after you got knocked out cold.”
“Can we please get out of here?” begged Azural.
“Good idea,” Zero lit his sword with magic and led the way through another cave.
Elsewhere, Guneagle and Lucky fell out of the shadows. Guneagle grasped his soul drive cover, “Never…do that…again.”
“Sorry bout that,” said Lucky, “Defense mechanism.” They scanned their new surroundings.
“Guneagle to Captain. Come Captain,” No one answered, “Captain come in. Do you read me? Crap! There's to much interference.” Guneagle began to walk around the cave, “Now what do we do?”
Lucky sniffed the air, “Hey, I think I got something. Well, Demonico's sense of smell has something anyway. It kinda smells like Joey and Shute.”
“Which way?” asked Guneagle.
Lucky sniffed the air a couple more times, “This way.” They ran down the tunnel in order to save fuel.
Shute and Joey rode the hover board around multiple rock spires in the cave, “Whoo yeah!” shouted Joey, “The King of Hover Board lives on! Ha ha!” He swerved tightly around corners and rocketed up and down, “Rock grind!” he slid down a rock rail, “Nailed it!”
Shute looked like he was going to be sick, “I think I'm lose my lunch.
“Hey! Not on me,” Joey landed on solid ground.
Shute happily jumped off, “Much better.” He switched on his flashlight while Joey collapsed his hover board.
Shute tried his communicator, “Shute to anybody. Come in anyone.” All he got was static, “Great, we're out of range and y flashlight is still trying to die.”
“Here, try this,” Joey pulled out what looked like an elongated battery.
“What's that?” asked Shute.
“A battery,” Joey answered, “I think it'll fit.”
Shute dumped out his old dead batteries and put in the elongated battery. His flashlight instantly lit up brighter than ever, “Haha! Thanks Joey.”
“No prob.,” said Joey, “now let's get out of here.”
“Hello! Captain? Shute? Zero? Anybody?” Bakunetsumaru sighed, “great. I think we're lost.”
“No duh,” said Amy.
Fleur looked around, “There has to be some way out of here.”
Bakunetsu faced the two females, “I for one am not going to walk in circles for days on end.”
“Don't you have a communicator or something Bakunetsumaru?” asked Fleur.
“Had,” Baku corrected, “Until your boyfriend stole it and hid it somewhere on the base.”
“Boyfriend?” asked Amy.
Fleur snapped, “Zero's not my boyfriend.”
“Fiancé then,” said Baku with a laugh.
“He's not that either,” said Fleur annoyed, “He's a friend who so happens to be a boy.”
“Wait a second,” said Amy, “You like that knight from Lacroa?”
Fleur blushed, “A-as a friend.”
Amy teased, “One you're blushing, two I can read your mind remember? And three, you stumbled.”
“If you're `just friends',” said Baku, “then why do you kiss, mouth guard off?”
“Who told you that!?” Fleur instantly clasped her hands over her mouth, “I mean uh…”
Baku died out laughing, “Are you serious! I just made that up. And I believe as Shute says, `Mook, nine, and stunker.'”
“That's `hook, line, and sinker' but yeah,” said Amy, “I wonder what your kids will look like?”
Fleur covered her face in embarrassment, “This never leaves the cave.”
“Eeney meanie miney moe,” Guneagle pointed at a cave, “This way.”
“`Eeney meanie miney moe'?” asked Lucky, “That's the best you got?”
Guneagle looked at his twin, “You have a better plan?”
“How about we try our communications again?” suggested Lucky. Footsteps echoed down the tunnel. Guneagle pointed at. The gundams readied their beamrifles at the approaching footsteps waiting for just the right moment.
The two beamrifle shots sailed over Joey and Shute, “Whose side are you on?” asked Shute.
“Sorry about that,” apologized Guneagle and Lucky in unison, “We thought you were something else.”
“How about lookin' before ya shoot next time?” said Joey.
Lucky headed towards the other tunnel, “Come on you guys. Let's see if we can find anyone else.”
“Alright you two hang on,” Zero flew over a bottomless pit while carrying Azural on his back and Genkimaru in one arm. Genkimaru looked down into the pit, “Wow. That's along way down.”
Azural buried her head into Zero's cape, “Tell me when it's over.”
Genki teased her, “Scardy cat. Scardy cat.”
“Hey knock it off,” said Zero. Something roared from under them.
“Wha-what was that?” asked Azural.
“Something bad,” said Genkimaru.
Zero shines his lit sword around the cave, “I don't see anything.” He continued to hover through the tunnel. The roar came again, this time, closer and followed by it's source, a twenty foot, four legged, snake like creature. It jumped from an adjacent tunnel and ran along the walls after Zero.
Azural screamed, “Morthura! Run!” Zero flew as fast as possible away from the blind lizard. The morthura perked up it's ears an opened two slits on either side of it'd throat and chased after them. Zero tried his magic but the creature managed to dodge thanks to the heat seeking slits on its neck. And closes the gap.
“It's going to get us!” shouted Genkimaru. The morthura snarled and leapt at Zero, teeth and claws bared.
“Shute. Guneagle. This is Captain, come in,” Captain vainly tried his communication, `No good. There's too much interference. “
Techno started freaking out, “Not good, not good, not good. We're lost in the Maze Cave. We're never going to get out!”
Rex knock Techno upside the head, “Knock it off. It's embarrassing.”
Techno chuckled, “Right, sorry.”
“if you two are finished,” said Captain, “May we continue?” They walked deeper into the cave when they heard a woman scream.
“That sounded like Amy,” said Techno.
“Come on,” said Captain, “This way.”
“You okay Amy?” asked Fleur.
Amy sat at the bottom of a six-foot pit rubbing her tush, “I'm fine. I think.”
Baku reached in and pulled her out, “Be more careful for now on okay?”
“Amy!” Rex's voice echoed down the tunnel, “Where are you?”
“Rex?” asked Amy and Fleur, “Rex! We're over here!”
Captain, Rex, and Techno rounded the corner, “Amy! Fleur! Bakunetsumaru!” said Captain happily, “Are you three alright?”
“Not to worry Captain,” said Baku, “we're fine. Since I was here.” Amy and Fleur rolled their eyes at the sight.
Techno spoke, “Come on. Let's try and find the others.”
Lucky, Guneagle, Joey, and Shute hovered in front of a bottomless pit. “I'm not going in there,” said Lucky.
“Why not?” asked Shute.
Joey answered, “Morthura tunnels.'
“Morthura?” asked Guneagle, “What's a morthura?”
Lucky answered, “A short tempered cave predator you don't want to mess with. Especially if it's a mother.”
“I'm going this way,” Joey steered his hover board towards a separate tunnel followed by Guneagle and Lucky. The tunnel twisted and turned before opening to the rim of a very deep pit. They hovered around the pit's rim.
“Whoa,” said Shute, “what is that ugly thing?”
Lucky swore, “Damn it to hell. It's a morthura.”
Joey spied some broken eggshells, “A mother morthura. Let's get out of here before she wakes up.”
“Guneagle! Shute!” Captain and his group rounded came into the area, `thank goodness you ar-”
“Shh!” said Joey in a loud whisper, “Mother morthura.” Fleur, Amy, Techno, and Rex gulped.
Baku looked over the side and into the nest, “It's Zero. He's alive.”
“Huh?” Everyone else looked into the nest. Zero was flatten against the wall near three sleeping baby morthuras.
Zero saw the others and whispered, “Help me.”
“Amazing,” whispered Captain, “He's still alive.” He scanned the area, “It appears that Azural and Genkimaru are with him as well.” The mother morthura had the two kids pinned under her paw.
“This is bad,” said Lucky, “How are we going to get them without waking the morthuras?”
Captain got an idea, “Lucky, can you use Demonico to get them?”
“Sweet idea Captain,” said Lucky, “I'll be back in a second.” He vanished into the shadows and traveled down to Zero, “Pss…Zero. Up here.”
Zero looked up and whispered, “How did you…?”
“I'll tell you later,” said Lucky, “Now give me your hand.” Lucky pulled Zero up onto the rock ledge then disappeared back into the shadows and reappeared next to Captain and the others.
Zero quickly stumbled away from him, “Never…again.”
Lucky rolled his eyes, “What do you guys have against the shadow world?” One of the morthura babies let out a high pitch squeal waking its mom and siblings.
“Damn it!” Rex swore. The mother morthura twitched her ears and open the slits on the sides of her neck. She growled and lunged at the humans and gundams standing on the ledge. Everyone on the ledge parted causing the morthura to ram her head into the rock wall. Back in the nest, the three babies closed in on Azural and Genkimaru.
Genkimaru swung his knife at them, “Back you ugly snake things back!” he whapped one across the nose causing it to shriek. Attention diverted, the mother dropped back down into the nest ready to punish Genki for hurting her baby but a boulder, courtesy of Rex, knocked her in the back giving Lucky and Guneagle enough time to dive in and rescue the kid gundams then fly after Captain and the others.
“Come on! Move it!” Captain led to group with the mother morthura galloping right behind them snarling.
“She's gaining on us!” shouted Shute.
Techno looked behind them, “I say now's a good time to high-tail it!” All of the Skylarkains dropped down on all fours and ran at top speed, and even managed to pass Guneagle.
“Amazing!” said Zero, “They have the ability to run on all four limbs.” The roaring morthura began to close the gap as the head for a narrow tunnel lined with a yellow rock.
Captain ordered, “Everyone into that tunnel! The morthura can't fit in there.”
With Lucky leading, the entered the tunnel only to lose their footing on the slippery rock. Lucky slid down it first followed by Fleur, then Amy, Joey, Techno, Rex, and Azural. Next Shute's hover board slipped and he began to slid followed by Bakunetsumaru, Genkimaru, and Captain, then finally Guneagle and Zero who also stumbled and slid down. The morthura jammed her head into the tunnel jaws snapping but her shoulders prevented her from going further.
Screaming for dear life, the humans and gundam rocketed down the twisting slid while pulling off some 360s every now and then. At the bottom of the slide, they shot out and landed in a pool of water. Zero and Guneagle however recovered and hovered above the pool.
“Where are they?” asked Guneagle.
“I'm not quite sure,” Zero answered.
Bubbles broke on the murky water's surface. Then everyone except Lucky and Azural surfaced gasping for air. Genkimaru quickly climbed onto a rock island since the water came up to everyone else's neck and shoulders.
“Is everyone okay?” asked Captain.
“Water!” Techno jumped out of the water, onto Zero, then he jumped to Guneagle, trying to get as far away from the water as possiable.
Rex answered, “Besides the fact we're wet and he's hydrophobic, yeah, we're fine.” Techno shook like a leaf as he held onto Guneagle's shoulders
Fleur looked at her drenched wings, “Great, it's going to take forever for them to dry.”
Fleur looked at her drenched wings, “Great, it's going to take forever for them to dry.”
Shute was the first to notice that two gundams were missing, “where's Lucky and Azural?”
“Ahh!” Baku screamed, “Something just swam by my leg.”
“Gotcha!” Azural splashed Bakunetsumaru with her feet, “I got you Bakunetsumaru.” She laughed and swam on her back. Then something grabbed her tail and pulled her under water.
Lucky emerged, “Who's got who?”
Azural resurfaced, “Cheater.”
“You two can swim?” asked Bakunetsu.
Lucky answered, “We can but she can't,” he gestured to Fleur. A deep distant howl came from the cave the water was running into.
“That was Skylar!” said Fleur, “Come on!”
“Hold up!” shouted Techno, “There's no way I'm getting back into the water.”
Joey groaned, “You'll have to get over your fear some day so why not now?”
“A snowball will survive in hell before I get back in the water,” said Techno.
“Better find another way then,” said Amy, “cause we're going this way.”
“What!?” shouted Techno, “Oh, come on! Surely I'm not the only non-swimmer here.”
“He…uh…has a point,” said Zero
“Huh?” asked Joey.
Captain answered, “Neither Zero, nor Bakunetsumaru, nor Guneagle nor Genkimaru can swim.”
“They want have to,” Azural chirped, “The currents strong enough to carry you. But the humans might need breathers.”
“Whats?” asked Shute.
Joey pulled out some facemasks with filters on both sides, “Breathers. They'll let you breath under water.” He tossed one to Shute, Amy and Rex.
“Alright team,” said Captain, “Move out!”
“Wait!” Techno jumped onto the rock island just before Guneagle and Zero hit the water, “I'm not getting in the water!”
“Have fun with the morthura then,” said Amy.
Techno looked at where they came from, then the murky water, then the fading lights of everyone leaving, “Wait for me!” He unwittingly jumped in.
“Hey get a camera!” shouted Joey, “Techno's swimming!”
“Sh-shut up!” shouted the frighten gundam. The current carried them swiftly down stream. The river began to deepen forcing them underwater. With a flick of her tail, Azural stayed well ahead of the others as the current quickened.
Lucky shouted after his little sister, “Hey Azural! Slow down! You're getting to far ahead!”
Azural shouted back, “Come guys pick up the pace! We don't have all day.” Fleur tried to talk but all that came out were bubbles.
Shute laughed, “Don't tell you can't talk underwater either.”
“Hm?” Captain scanned the area, “Where is the origin of that rushing sound?”
“'Rushing sound'?” asked Joey. The water pushed them around a corner and towards a, “Waterfall!”
“Swim away!” shouted Rex. Techno began to freak and almost activated his elemental power. Rex stopped him, “Don't do it. Remember what happened last time?”
“The current's to strong!” shouted Captain, “We'll never make it!” They fell over the fifty-foot waterfall and into a cave lake.
“Land!” Techno happily scurried out of the water.
Genkimaru spat out some water, “Can we please walk from here?”
“Walk more easy than swim.” It was Thief standing at the lake's edge, “How friends alive?”
“You!” shouted Zero, “You abandoned us!”
“We were almost eaten by that morthura thing!” shouted Bakunetsumaru.
Thief gave them a confused look, “You no see tunnel or no hear Thief. Thief say `come' but friends no hear.”
“Fleur!” Skylar came bounding out of no where and pounced on Fleur, “Your okay!” He happily wagged his tails and licked her face.
Fleur laughed, “Skylar! I'm-hahaha-I'm wet enough.”
“Captain Gundam! Come in Captain Gundam! Can you hear me?”
“Chief Haro?” Captain turned on the hallo screen, “We read you Chief Haro.”
Haro sighed in relief, “Thank goodness. We thought we lost you there for a second.” Chief Haro looked over his shoulder, “You three can stop torturing them. They're alive.” They heard the Guntriplets groaned. Chief Haro faced Captain again, “I'm glad you're alive but you've wasted to much time. Get out of there and get to Imperial.”
Thief led the way again, followed by Captain and Baku, then Zero, Guneagle, Lucky, and Fleur, then Skylar who was carrying everyone else. Thief soon led them into a cave filed with mirror like crystals and had precious jewels embedded into the crystal walls.
“Pretty,” said Azural.
Lucky whistled, “Man, and though the treasure room looked expensive.”
“How much do think all of this is worth?” asked Shute.
“Couple mil.,” guessed Joey.
“$3,974,331,735,274,” answered Captain.
Thief looked at the jewels in a daze, “Shiny. Must have shiny.” He grabbed one of the embedded jewels and tried to pull it out.
Rex quickly jumped of Skylar and pulled Thief away from the jewel, “Hey!” snapped Thief, “What big idea?”
“I tried it before,” said Rex, “Take a jewel and something's going to try and kill you.”
“There's the way out!” shouted Genkimaru excitedly.
“It's about time,” said Bakunetsumaru. They raced towards the cave's exit and back out into the thick demon dust choked air. They were on a ledge overlooking the land and spied their target, Imperial, of in the distance.
“”We can't stay out in the open,” said Captain, “This way.” Everyone jumped and hid behind some rocks as they worked their way down the mountainside. Everyone on Skylar's back slid off and crouched down with the others.
“Now what?” asked Fleur.
“You get by us!” a strong-armed demon knocked away the boulder they were hiding behind. Everyone froze in fear, forgetting how to scream and fight as the strong-armed demon and his army closed in, “This victory is going to be sweet.”