StarFox Fan Fiction ❯ A New Enemy ❯ Chapter II: The Stirrings of War ( Chapter 2 )

[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]
Meanwhile, a young hero named Taylor Daniels also was headed for a planet called Rellonai, but to oust a villain named Adek. He sat in the command chair on the bridge of his ship, the Krell-class cruiser Cat's Eye. Taylor looked around from his position at the center of the bridge, feeling a sense of pride in his ship. Everything was running smoothly; as it was meant to be. Each station was manned by either an Altairian or a member of the Rydian race, a tribute to the the new alliance between the two races. Taylor smiled as he looked around at the alien races populating his ship. 'A few short years ago I never would have believed this could be real; contact and cooperation between other sentient species in the universe.' Before he was called to be the leader of the Iri Felessar, Taylor had been just an average Terran with a "normal" life. However, it seemed that destiny had other plans for him. Seemingly by chance, he discovered a strange crystal, which empowered him with mystical psionic abilities. He later learned his true identity was that of an Altairian; Lirren Shentai, Jelet're'el. Once he had become accustomed to this new role, he led a group of psionic warriors into battle against a maniacal madman named J'den, who they defeated, but now a new threat had appeared: Adek. The egotistical maniac hailed from the planet of Tiverness, a small planet a several parsecs away from Altair. He also was gifted with psychic abilities, but he had twisted them to his own evil intents. Now, he planned on building a stronghold in the Har'lii system to better assault the Iri Felessar and the Altarian alliance. “This system is too close to Altair,” he said, turning to his best friend and second-in-command, Jacen Ryan, an Altairian. Typical of his race, Jacen sported pointed ears, a lithe, graceful demeanor, and an unmatched skill in combat. Jacen turned to face his commander, fixing him with fearless blue eyes. “If Adek builds a base here, he can almost blast us with the base guns.”
“Agreed,” replied Jacen, running a hand through his mussy blond hair. “We have to stop him, now!”
“But we have to be careful,” stated Star Niress, the beautiful white fox girl who was Taylor’s girlfriend. Star hailed from the planet Rydia, which sported several different races of anthromorphs. She was covered completely in white fur, interspersed at intervals with scarlet markings, which corresponded exactly with her crimson hair. As a token of a unique heritage, Star also sported a pair of large wings, which, as Taylor had discovered, were for more than just decoration; they were functional. “Adek’s powers are unlike anything we’ve ever seen before. We don’t know what he’s capable of.”
Taylor nodded. “Sounds like a good idea. Let’s move!” Taylor turned to his left, looking at Star's half brother, a black wolf 'morph named Jeresh Bluetail. He was also Rydian, and was covered in night black fur with white markings as contrast. Similar to his half sister, he carried a set of large wings on his back, which were a deep blue. "All right, Jeresh," he said. "Take us out."
Jeresh nodded. "All right, Taylor."
Jeresh's hands flew over several panels, and soon, the Cat's Eye was effortlessly soaring through hyperspace.

About a half hour later, when the battlecruiser was well on its way, Taylor climbed out of the command chair, stood, and stretched. "Hey, guys," he said, "It's gonna be at least another hour before we reach Rellonai. Let's take a break. The autopilot can handle navigation."
Jacen, Jeresh, and Star nodded. "Sounds good," they all replied.
"All right, then," Taylor replied. "See you in an hour."
"Hey, Taylor," Star said, rising.
"Yeah?""Mind if I come with you to your quarters?"
"Not at all," Taylor replied, smiling slightly.
"Great!" Star said, walking up next to Taylor, brushing her tail against his leg playfully. He turned, smiling coyly at her, then slipped his hand into hers as they walked down the halls.
‘What’re you thinking about, Taylor?’ Star asked her mate telepathically as they walked through the corridors of their ship.
Taylor smiled. ‘You,’ he replied in kind.
‘Hmm. Anything in particular?’
‘Just how lucky I am to have met you, love.’
Star chuckled softly. ‘The feeling is mutual,’ she replied.
'We're here,' Taylor said. He leaned over the panel beside his door, pressed a combination of buttons, and the twin doors smoothly slid open. "After you, miss," Taylor said, resuming verbal conversation.
"Why thank you, sir," Star replied, bowing coyly and giggling softly. The vixen and the human walked into the quarters and sat on Taylor's couch.
Despite the peaceful settings they were in now, Taylor could not help but feel a little apprehensive about the upcoming battle. He knew that they would have to fight Adek soon, and he knew that the Tivernessian was at least powerful enough to match his own strength, if not more.
And that was precisely what had Taylor worried. He didn't want anything to happen to his love.
Star picked up on his thoughts and laughed. "Stop worrying about me," she giggled. "I know how to handle myself in a fight. And besides, may I remind you who beat who in our last sparring match?"
Taylor looked down, chuckling to himself. "All right, all right," he said with a grin. "You win."
"Again," Star said with a smirk. Taylor laughed, then leaned back against the couch, putting his arm around Star's shoulder. She looked up at him, then leaned closer to plant a kiss on his lips. "I love you, Taylor," she murmured, leaning her head on his shoulder.
"I love you too, Star," Taylor replied.
______________________________________________________________ _____

The Great Fox burst out of hyperspace into real-space and cruised into orbit around the planet Rellonai. “Why in the heck would Scales want to build a base here?” Falco asked. “This place doesn’t exactly seem ideal.”
“Three words--location, location, location,” Peppy replied. “From here, Scales could attack Corneria with even his short-range craft. He could literally throw everything he’s got at us. Right now, after the Aparoid invasion, we simply don’t have the resources to counter such an invasion, and Scales knows it. He could blast us without us even being able to put up a fight. That’s why the General wants us to stop him here, now, before the construction of his new stronghold is complete!”
Suddenly Krystal screamed and fell to her knees, her hands pressing against her temples. Fox was instantly at her side. “What is it, Krystal?” he asked worriedly.
“A--a strong mental pattern,” Krystal gasped. “Apparently it didn’t like my psychic probing…” She shook her head and shakily climbed to her feet.
“A-are you okay?” Fox asked.
Falco watched the exchange between the two vulpines, a slight smile coming to his beak despite the situation. 'Foxie's startin' to realize that little Krystal's more than just a teammate to him,' he thought. 'It's about time.'
“Yes, I’m fine,” Krystal smiled. “No need to worry--” her voice suddenly trailed off and she looked wide-eyed at the viewscreen. Peppy turned, and gasped as he and the rest of the Starfox team saw the largest craft any of them had ever laid eyes on. It was even larger than the Great Fox. The battleship was made up of two large prongs, joined by a central beam near the aft. Rising several stories above the cruiser was a large tailpiece, on which sat a radar array. The craft was pure black, lined with pulsing violet energy conduits. “Let’s get out of here! I sense much danger from that ship!” Krystal exclaimed.
“You don’t need to be psychic to know that one!” Falco shot back. “Come on, Fox, get us out of here!”
“I’m trying!” Fox grunted, wrestling with the controls. “This is a big ship. She can’t turn on a dime like the Arwings.”
Suddenly, a bright glow began to form in openings in the prongs jutting out from the other craft. “May fortune protect us,” Peppy breathed.
“Oh, no…” Falco muttered as two beams of energy shot out of the craft, ripping through the Great Fox’s hull like it was paper. Team Starfox was thrown to the deck.
Fox was the first to regain his footing. “Let’s get out of here, guys! If the Arwings can launch, we can escape!” The rest of the team scrambled to their feet and dashed to the hangar. Fortunately, the Arwings had been left undamaged by their mysterious assailant’s attack. Fox, Krystal, Falco, and Slippy leapt into Arwings and began running through the systems checks.
Falco turned to Peppy. “What are you waiting for? Get in!”
“There’s no room!”
“Then we’ll make room!” Falco shot back. “Come on, gramps!” Falco hauled Peppy into his fighter, and Fox grabbed ROB. Rapidly completing the last of the systems checks, Fox powered up his engines.
“Let’s launch, guys!” Fox shouted. The four Arwings tore out of the hangar, pursued closely by trails of fire. Once they were out, the six members of Starfox watched their beloved battleship go down in a ball of flame. Peppy sighed. "That's the second time Great Fox has been shot down in six months! Pepper's not going to be happy to hear that."
Fox looked up through the top of his cockpit and saw the alien ship as a tiny speck in the distance. “I can barely see that thing,” Fox said. “Which means, since we’re so much smaller, that they probably can’t see us at all. Let’s hope they think no one survived.”
“Then we’ll have the drop on ‘em!” Falco hooted. “We can blast ‘em!”
“Not yet!” Fox ordered. “The General’s orders were to investigate the base, remember? After we do that, then we can go after that ship if you really want to, Falco. But first, I want to find a little bit more about that thing. Krystal? You said you sensed something just before we saw the cruiser. Could there be a connection?” No answer. “Krys?” Fox called. “You ok?”
Krystal opened the comm channel, and her face appeared next to Slippy’s and Falco’s. She tried to smile, but her tearstained cheeks revealed her true emotions.
Fox instantly picked up on Krystal’s true feelings, and quickly decided a private conversation might be the best way to sort this all out. “Encrypt channel alpha, code: Tango-Beta-Niner-Gamma,” Fox said.
“Encryption code accepted,” the computer replied, and Falco and Slippy’s faces vanished from the screen.
“Krys? You ok?” Fox asked.
She sniffed and briskly brushed a tear off of her cheek. “Yeah, Fox. I’m fine.”
Fox tilted his head. “Are you sure?”
Krystal looked down. “No--oh Fox!” She buried her face in her hands and cried softly.
Fox placed his hand on the viewscreen. “Krystal? Wh-what is it?” Fox started to panic, an emotion that confused him because it was one he had never experienced before. He was always the calm one of the team. Why should he get so worked up now? He quickly answered his own question; he loved Krystal.
Krystal looked up at him, her ears hanging limply. “I--I saw my family, Fox,” she murmured. “I could see them as clearly as I see you now.”
Fox gasped. “What?”
“That’s not all,” Krystal said, and she no longer could keep her eyes on Fox, and she looked down, her next words merely a mumble. “Th-that ship--” she began, “The one--orbiting the planet--that’s the one--that destroyed Cerinia!”
“Oh--Krys…” Fox murmured. He placed his hand on the viewscreen, then punched his fist into the palm of his other hand. ‘There’s nothing I can do for Krystal, stuck in this damn Arwing!’
Krystal slowly blinked back her tears and smiled slightly. ‘That’s all right. Just knowing you’re worried about me is consolation enough.’
Fox looked around in surprise. That was Krystal’s voice he had just heard, but he hadn’t seen her lips move. “Krys?” Fox called. “Krystal, is that you?”
Krystal actually laughed a little at Fox’s words. ‘Who else would it be, silly?’
“H--how are you talking to me? I can hear you, but your lips aren’t moving!”
‘It’s a new ability I just discovered. It’s called telepathy.’ Krystal was actually a little surprised herself at this new ability. ‘The only way we should be able to hear each others’ thoughts is if we were--’ she almost couldn’t believe she was saying--thinking this. ‘If we were destined to be together… Fox and I are--soul mates?’
Fox looked at Krystal. “Are you okay, Krys? I’m still worried about you.”
Krystal smiled at him. “Mm-hmm,” she nodded. “I’m fine, now. As long as I have you, I’ll be all right.”
Fox blinked in surprise. He liked Krys, but he wasn’t sure if the feeling was mutual. Apparently, it was. Fox looked at Krystal, his face set. “Listen…we’ll stop that thing. Somehow… We’ll keep it from destroying anything else. That I promise you.”
“I know you will, Fox,” Krystal said.
Fox smiled. “Disengage channel encryption, code: Gamma-Delta-Three-Three.”
“Code accepted. Encryption, disengaged,” the computer replied. Falco, Slippy, and Peppy’s faces reappeared on the screen. Falco noticed his leader’s expression, and wondered what had occurred between him and Krystal those past few minutes, and opened his beak to ask, but shut it with a snap when Fox gave him a familiar look. He didn’t think it was any of Falco’s business, end of story. Falco, though he was curious, respected Fox’s privacy.
“Let’s finish our mission, team!” Fox called. “Let’s give Scales the blasting he deserves!”
“Let’s do this!”
The four Arwings powered up their engines and soared down through the atmosphere of Rellonai in pursuit of their nemesis.