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The black screen blinked to life and begun an insistent beep. Alyssa Arano looked up from the book she had buried her head in for the past few hours. She left orders not to be disturbed. Reading to orchestral music provided a brief respite that the piercing ringtone shattered. Alyssa briefly contemplated if she should allow the incoming call to interrupt her rest.

Recent events were exhausting. The loss of her leader and childhood companion affected not just her work but also shook her personally. The Zeon leadership was quick to shove her into the vacuum created by the death of Haman Karn. Alyssa had been groomed for this all her life, yet she never felt ready, not even now. Yet she had to be strong for Neo Zeon to succeed in reclaiming their birthright. They prepared for this for years. The hardships suffered by her people would soon be over once they moved back to Side 3.

The incessant beep broke through her thoughts. Alyssa sighed and closed the book in front of her. She brushed her hair out of her face and checked her appearance vaguely through the reflection of the console screen. Satisfied, she pressed the answer button. The face of her assistant appeared on the screen. He did not appear pleased to be tasked with relaying the message to her, she knew at first glance. Alyssa knew Lieutenant Alexander Mori well enough to sense his discomfort even through the screen. She wondered what bothered him so much, he usually kept a better composure. Alex saluted at the sight of the Zeon Regent. “M’Lady, we have reports that a salvage team scoured the wreckage zone before our recovery team arrived. I’m ashamed—“

“It happens.” Alex did not have to mention Haman’s name. He understood her pain, and she thanked him silently for that. “I trust you’ve dispatched a team to track down the salvagers.”

“Yes, M’Lady. Reports indicate that they are heading for the Moon.” Alyssa expected no less from her assistant. “I will look into this myself, Alex.”

“But, M’Lady—“ Alyssa cut off his protest with a raised hand. He knew she would take over the search personally. That explained his reluctance to make the call. It meant he understood her reasons too, as much as he disliked it. “You know I have to do this, Alex. The fleet will continue on course as planned. The delegation must reach Side 3. Patch the Vice Admiral through.”

“Yes, M’Lady.” There was a brief pause before Vice Admiral Darius Solomon appeared on the screen in a second video link beside Alexander. The Lieutenant saluted his superior while the Vice Admiral saluted the Regent. “Good evening, Lady Alyssa.”

“Vice Admiral,” Alyssa nodded in acknowledgement. “Alex, please.”

Her assistant proceeded to fill Solomon in on the intelligence report. The middle-aged veteran listened quietly. When Alexander finished, Solomon finally spoke, “Do you wish to take matters into your own hands, Lady Alyssa?”

“I leave the Doyenne in your command, Darius. I will leave at once on the Repentance. If all goes well, we will rendezvous with the fleet at Side 3.”

“I’m against this, Alyssa. I should have been firm with Lady Haman and stopped her from going out into combat against enemy ace pilots. With all due respect, it’s too soon to let the new Regent to be off chasing after a rabbit trail.” Solomon was a father-like figure for both Haman and Alyssa. He was a close and old friend of Maharaja Karn, Haman’s father and Alyssa’s guardian.

Alyssa pursed her lip in annoyance. She expected resistance and understood their reasons, but she was going regardless of their opinions and feelings. They stopped her from joining the recovery team and the search parties after the battle. There was no stopping her this time. “The Repentance can handle whatever surprises we encounter. I’ll also be bringing the Black Tri Stars along as escorts. Don’t worry, Darius. You can help me by bringing the delegates to Side 3 and protect Princess Mineva.”

Solomon sighed and said, “You and Haman are too alike. There is not stopping you once your mind is made up. There’s so much of Maharaja in the two of you. I promised him I would take care of you both. I have failed him once and I don’t want to fail him again.”

“I’m not going up against enemy ace pilots in a battle. We are intercepting a group of civilian salvagers. We will outgun them.” Alyssa noticed Solomon’s expression softening slightly. She recognised that look since young when he finally gave in to their pestering him for candy. “Besides, Haman would have done the same for me if our roles were reversed.”

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"I'm not a know it all! I just treat it like my baby!" Huffed out Artemis as she pulled her head out of one of her Gaza-C's verniers, "You'd be protective too if you had to fly around in this scrap heap."

The hanger of the Repentance was filled with mobile suits, with most of them belonging to the Gaza family line. Artemis's was one of the few not painted a drab olive green. Plates of armor hung off of the machine as the green haired girl and her mechanic, a short redhead named Ginger. They were both smeared with grease and grime alike.

"How do you bang this thing up so bad in the first place if you treat it like your baby?" Ginger snapped back as she elbowed a plate of armor down into place.

"Everyone else is a better shot than I expect..." Artemis mumbled the words under her breath as she dragged a rag around the rim of the vernier, "I'm here ain't I?"

"Oh yea. And this is what? The seventh leg we've replaced on your Gaza?" Ginger could't help smirk as she finished putting the armor back onto the mobile suit's leg.

Rather than respond, Artemis peeled her grease stained tank top off and flung it at Ginger's face, blinding her. As the girl managed to get the garment off she was blinded again by Artemis's pants. Tangled up in the clothes Ginger drifted for a few moments before finally getting free and seeing that Artemis had changed into her flight uniform, helmet and all. 

"How do you keep doing that? Does everyone else just see you naked all the time?" Ginger didn't sound cross but was instead smiling ear to ear as she kicked back over to the black Gaza-C, helping Artemis open up the cockpit and slide in, "Remember just bring it back in after you're done testing it. We don't wanna get in trouble for just launching the thing out..."

Artemis gave Ginger a squeeze before vanishing into the Gaza's interior. She nestled herself into the cockpit before the screens around her blinked to life. As the machine finishes starting up she grabs onto the controls and walks the mobile suit onto the catapult.

"Artemis MacGriever, Gaza. Launching!" 

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Leon's Zero Sky Zaku was flying in space in search of the Repentance, while muttering to himself.

"I swear, they better pay well or the old man is gonna hear about it... Wait, is that..."

He saw and then approached the huge, red ship slowly, and witnessed a Gaza launching out.

"Guess that's how they greet allies..."

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The frame of the Gelgoog juddered almost violently around him, the antique metal cocooning the machine’s retrofitted panoramic cockpit creaking and groaning under the stress of high-G maneuvers. Perhaps it was a poor decision, redesigning such an old machine up to the standards of contemporary mobile suit technology: in just eight short years, the fundamental nature of mobile suit warfare had changed, making large, heavy machines like this almost obsolete. Briefly, addled by the inertial stress of a rapid deceleration, followed by a rapid pivot, Teo Nygaard considered the viability of his father’s decision to build the Gelgoog Stutzer. On paper, it was perfect, matching the performance of many of its contemporaries, but in practice, Teo noted that without the agility afforded by a movable frame, the myriad thrusters on the Gelgoog Stutzer made it far more difficult to use.

 

Teo grit his teeth as he repeated the maneuver, despite the loud beeping of a high-G warning on his monitor. The blood rushed to his head as he inverted the Gelgoog Stutzer in space before slowing the machine to a relative halt. He took several deep breaths, squeezing his fingers vise-tight against the twin control sticks on either side of his body to redistribute the blood back throughout his body. “Maneuvering tests complete…” he panted, speaking through a short-range comms channel. “I’m coming back to refuel.”

 

Nearby, a civilian cargo craft was nestled between pieces of space debris. It bore the insignia of the Nygaard Concern, and presumably so did the heavily modified mobile suit it was observing. On the other side of the channel, Teo would hear a gruff, pompous voice. “No, Teo. We’ve received orders from the Neo Zeon military: you’re to rendezvous with one of their vessels nearby, the Repentance. We’ve sent you its coordinates, and a laser message ahead of you. They’ll know you’re coming. It’s time to shine.”

 

 

 

Teo sucked out the last few sips of beverage base from the packet, nearly cringing at the overly tangy flavour. He’d been drifting through space for a bit more than half an hour, by now, and he was starting to get bored. The marker labeled ‘RENDEZVOUS’ ahead of him slowly ticked down: ninety kilometers, eighty-five, eighty, seventy-five.

 

By now, he reasoned he was close enough to try and get long-range communications with the vessel “Repentance, this is Ensign Teo Nygaard, I’ve been told to rendezvous with you, coming in on vector 0-6-0. How copy?” Soon, however, he would watch as a second IFF marker emerged from inside of the Repentance, labeled 'GAZA-C'. "Oh, great..."

Edited by Rabbidy
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After the Gaza-C was flung into the star filled abyss of space Artemis accidentally dragged her hand over her controls, flicking off her communication channels. She cleared the cockpit screens of numbers, indicators and gauges and took in the carpet of twinkling lights with a deep pent up sigh that came from deep inside of her. Tears began to blur her vision as she drifts soundlessly through the void. For once her thoughts were her own. But her moment of silent reflection was never meant to last. 

A red flash brings the screen back to life as a circular target is drawn around a distant dot of moving light followed by a line of text branching off of the red circle; MS-06? Zaku II. The girl stared at it with a mixture of anger and resentment before bringing her screens back to life. The screens brought a surprise back with them, another target drawn over another rapidly moving dot. This one was only given a BOGIE label.

"I thought the One Year War was over," Artemis croaked out, her voice cracking as she lifted her helmet to dry her eyes, "You interrupted me time. You're dead. Both of you."

The girl smashed the communication button with her fist, opening up a channel with the Repentance.

"CPO MacGriever outside the Repentance. Two unidentified mobile suits are approaching."  The voice that came back to her questioned not about the mobile suits but about her voice, it sounded hollow and dry. She was then quickly told to wait and not to engage with the suits, "Sorry Repentance, couldn't catch that. Com's probably still fucked."

Artemis switched the com back off with a heavy hand as she aimed her Knuckle Buster at the bogie. The pair of green lenses on her Gaza were both focused on the rapidly moving dot. At such an extreme range any shot from the Gaza would be a crapshoot and might as well be a warning shot, or at least was Artemis's justification to firing at the distant bogie. 

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"No way, old man! I'm piloting it!" Yelled out Amber is she opened the cockpit of her orange custom suit, the Dra-C Oct. "It's my suit, and I'm using it!" She looked at her father, who had seen better days. Years and years of hard work had made him weaker and more feeble. His age was also becoming an issue since he couldn't do much of the heavy lifting anymore. However, Neo Zeon needed all the help they could get. "They want you to pilot a Gaza-C, like the others." said her father, Kem. Amber looked around to see rows and rows of the mobile suit. "No." She said. "I've put so much effort into this." Inside though, she knew that it was a better MS, but her Dra-C was so special to her. She was just glad it got on the ship.

Amber glazed back down to her father and saw how distraught he looked. She realized that the only times she wasn't her happy, goofy self was when she was with her father, who would frequently restrict her time and time again. What she didn't realize was that her father only did this to make sure she didn't get hurt. "I'm... I'm sorry, dad." she said as the cockpit closed. The orange suit started, causing cameras to blink into the interior. I knew that meant her purple and green lights for the monoeye were on. "Man, it took forever to get that to work." She thought. The legless mobile suit floated to the catapult, connecting at the bottom. "Amber Destara, Dra-C Oct, LAUNCHING!"

Kem glanced one of the mechanics, Ginger. "I just want her to be safe." he said to her. Ginger smirked. "Oh, don't worry. She'll be fine!"

She held on to the controls as the suit jetted through the depths of space. Amber loved the speed her mobile suit could create. Suddenly, she saw a gray machine flying toward their ship. "Is that a Gelgoog?" she said. She wasn't sure because it was so far away, but she was sure that a black Gaza was firing at another mobile suit. "Artemis!" She yelled out. "We're being attacked?!" 

Amber pointed her mega gatling gun directly at the other mobile suit. "It's a long shot, but I gotta try!" She shouted as she fired bullets at the unknown suit.

 

OOC: (I'll have the Dra-C be damaged after the battle to that she can use the Gaza.

Edited by FrostyFoster
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Quickly, the yellow circle that labeled the Gaza-C turned into a red diamond as its pilot brought its weapons to bear. Teo hadn’t prepared for a fight, but if that’s what she wanted, he would need to defend himself. “Repentance, call your mobile suit off!” He’d call out, though slowly, he’d unlatch the beam machine gun at his mobile suit’s rear skirt, tucking the stock under the Gelgoog’s arm. The Gelgoog Stutzer surged forward, oddly enough much in the same manner a certain ace would usually do during the One Year War. He was trying to scare the Gaza pilot off in hopes of defusing the situation.

 

Teo paused for a moment as he came up on the approach, nearing the Gaza-C. For a moment, he hesitated, but as it fired a few shots from its Knuckle Buster, he had little choice but to retaliate. However, before he could get properly targeted on the mobile suit, a veritable wall of tracers very nearly grazed his suit from his right. It was another mobile suit, with an unknown IFF, though after a moment or two, it would change, even as the red diamond hovered over it. ‘DRA-C’ “What the hell...?!” Teo grit his teeth as he fired all of his Gelgoog’s left RCS thrusters, sending the machine off in one direction away from the withering barrage of gunfire. “Repentance, I’m friendly!” He could feel the blood rush to one side of his body, and for a moment, he begun to waver, but he steeled himself, letting out a loud grunt as he regained control of his mobile suit.

 

“Why are you shooting?!” The Gaza pilot was persistent, he had to give them that, and soon enough, he would bring his own weapon to bear. He squeezed the trigger on his control stick, watching the weapon charge up before releasing a short volley of angry green energy in their direction. Being a short-range weapon, however, most of the shots would fizzle out into a cloud of mega-particle mist before they even reached the Gaza.

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"Well... If I don't step in, someone might die. If I step in, they might think I'm the enemy. Eh, screw it."

Leon set his Mobile Suit's reactor output to its maximum, and charged the Gaza-C.

"You look like you need a hug!"

Once in range, Leon's Zaku's arms wrapped around its target's waist area, and he started trying to pull it back towards the Repentance.

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Artemis's screens became walls of red exclamation marks. The trackers on the approaching mobile suits both became red triangles with flashing exclamation marks. With one new marker represented by a green square with the tag AMBER. The tag guides the girl's hand to fumble for her coms, to hear her crew mate's words; we're being attacked.

"Well they're shooting back aren't they-" Artemis cut herself off as she yanked back on her controls, sending her backwards as the Gelgoog opened fire, last few shots crossing over were she was moments before, the only thing saving her being the distance between the two suits, "Yes being attacked! Very much! Can you take the Gelgoog? You're faster than I am."

A high pitched beeping dragged Artemis's eyes back to the Zaku. It was charging her with arms spread wide open. The distance between them pops up in big red numbers under its tag, and it was dropping like a rock tied to an anvil wearing concrete shoes. 

"No touching you pervert!" She screams as she tears the beam saber from her right shoulder, igniting it. The beam saber met the Zaku's shoulder, shearing it off and leaving a glowing orange ring of molten metal in it's place, "What is with these old guys always grabbing me!"

The Zaku wouldn't be denied it's embrace., apparently, and so Artemis wouldn't be denied when her Gaza brought it's elbow up and smashed it down onto the Zaku's head, dislodging her from the one armed antique. Her beam saber slashed through space once more, leaving the Zaku with two missing arms and no hugs. 

"Amber I'm coming back to assist you, the Zaku is probably harmless now," She grumbled into her com as her thrusters roared into life, she was moving already but away from the Gelgoog and Amber due to the Zaku's tackle, "Put it down if it comes close again though."

Beam saber in hand she launched at the flashes of light echoing in the darkness and the red triangle and the green square. She aimed herself at the triangle and engaged her transformation, folding her suit over and pointing her Knuckle Buster and two cannons at it.

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"Not a problem, Artemis!" Amber yelled out. She kept firing at the Gelgoog, but her shots were too far away to even hit. "Come on, get closer!" She shouted. In reality, Amber was somewhat scared to fight the mobile suit. She had no experience. "Dammit!" She thought. The pilot had no choice. Amber pushed forward on the controls. Leaving less and less room between the two suits. The Gelgoog hadn't stopped firing either, sending the barrage of energy at the orange machine.

  She brought up her shield in an attempt to block, but to no avail. The Dra-C was taking damage in vital areas quickly. "Not like this!" She said as her gatling gun's ammo depleted. "What?! Was it not fully filled?" The machine threw the heavy weapon at the suit, pulling out her beam saber. She swung to the right, but it left more vital parts exposed. She was wide open.

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The boy looked at Alyssa, bemused. She took a step backwards, ashamed by her impulsiveness. Yet his eyes sparkled, as though he smiled at her soul. He reached out with one hand and tucked her hair behind an ear. Alyssa blushed involuntarily. Then he shoved her backwards and walked off. Alyssa fell, but she never hit the ground. She was falling faster and faster. Then she woke up with a start.

This dream again.

Him again. She shook her head to push him out of her mind. The doorbell rang. Alyssa flicked on the intercoms. Alex appeared on the screen. "M'Lady, are you alright? I wasn't able to get through the intercoms so I thought to come here personally."

She saw the missed call on the screen. She was tired so she took a nap, but she felt even more tired than she was before she went to bed. "My apologies, I was sleeping and missed the calls. What's the matter?"

Alex would only interrupt her sleep if it was something urgent. He could take care of most issues that came up. He said, "Forgive my intrusion, M'Lady. We have reports that the salvagers went to Von Braun City. I have set course for the Moon. Our contacts will have the salvagers by the time we arrive."

She nodded and waited. He had more serious issues to present to her. "There's another set of intelligence report that you need to look at, M'Lady. I have sent the files to you. They are of utmost priority."

"I will look at them. Meet me at strategy room in an hour." Alyssa dismissed her assistant and proceeded to freshen herself. Then she sat down at her desk, poured herself some tea, and begun going through the reports Alex had forwarded her.

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Leon's Zaku was floating in space, lacking its arms.

"Well... I guess I've been... Disarmed."

He waited, idle, for a few seconds, before facepalming.

"That was terrible. I hope nobody heard that."

 

He then tried to turn towards the Zeonic ship.

"Repentance, this is Leon Malroz, of Zero Sky. We've got a pretty bad situation right now and you should tell your pilots to retreat before people start dying for no reason."

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Quickly, Teo drew back, putting his Gelgoog’s beam machine away as the Dra-C approached with beam saber in tow. The mobile suit’s gatling gun struck the Gelgoog, forcing him forward with a loud thud before he regained control. The cockpit of the Gelgoog Stutzer shook as he fired the maneuvering thrusters to correct his heading, gritting his teeth. “Come on…” he growled.

 

Amber would watch as two panels in the Gelgoog’s forearms opened to reveal two halves of a beam naginata, which it would wield separately. The heavy plating of the strange mobile suit hid more than one thing, however, and suddenly, a thick cable shot out from a winch on the Gelgoog’s chest, expertly aimed to let the electromagnetic hook catch against the Dra-C’s beam saber arm. Without hesitation, Teo begun to retract the cable, pulling himself close enough to strike. He didn’t want to fight, but if that was he needed to do, he would do it without hesitation. The blades of the split beam naginata would come down over the orange mobile suit’s arms, and then with a swift kick to the torso, the Gelgoog was away. "I don't want to kill you!" he cried, seemingly at no one in particular. "I don't want to fight either."

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"I really. really hope this doesn't hit Amber," whined Artemis to herself as both of her Gaza=C's optics were keeping her locked onto the Gelgoog, the red triangle around it blinked back into a circle as she gained a lock, "Three, two and one!" 

Artemis's fingers started to depress the triggers for her cannons when she saw the two icons abruptly part from one another rather than draw closer. The girl hesitated until the two icons were far enough away that she felt that she wouldn't hit Amber. And after that moment she pulled the triggers on all of her guns.

A torrent of yellow beams blared out of her twin cannons and her Knuckle Buster. As her Knuckle Buster fired Artemis adjusted her aim between each blast of the massive weapon, trying to keep it aimed at the Gelgoog as it flitted through space. 

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The two beams jetted toward the Gelgoog, but one managed to hit the gatling gun, causing it to explode right by Amber's mobile suit. "Oh, crap!" She yelled out. The shrapnel shoved itself into the Dra-C's propellant tanks, igniting the two "legs". The orange machine started to fly erratically out of the combat zone, away from the Repentance. "No, no, no! Come on! Turn back!"

Fluid started to leak out of each tank, causing flashing lights to appear all over the cockpit. She looked back to see her ship get smaller and smaller. "Please! Just stop." She said as she pulled on her controls. They wouldn't budge and eventually, the suit managed to be completely out of range. She glanced around to only see stars and the planet. Suddenly, one of the propellants burst, sending what was left of the Dra-C deeper into the depths of space...

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A brief moment of clarity befell Teo as he watched the orange Dra-C drift off into the depths of space. And then, as if on its own, his body moved to maneuver his machine. The Gelgoog surged forward again, this time at full throttle, causing the inside of the old machine to shake violently as he attempted to close the gap. Would it be enough?

 

He fired the machine’s grapple wire once more, and soon, the magnetic hook found purchase on the damaged mobile suit, arresting its momentum and no doubt causing its pilot to experience a significant shift in G forces, perhaps enough to knock them out. Teo panted loudly, though before he could do anything else, a volley of powerful yellow beams struck his machine, incinerating the thin luna titanium wire and melting the left leg of his machine to a metallic pulp.

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Once the first explosion popped up on her screens, Artemis stopped firing, her fingers hovered over the triggers hesitantly. Her eyes took stock of the situation. All of the other mobile suits were damaged in some way but rather than being destroyed they were merely disarmed, or more literally in the Zaku's case. 

"Amber, I really hope you can get back to the ship on your own," the words came out as a groan as the girl thumbed the transformation controls, hearing only a sharp error beep and a quick flash of a red light, "The Gaza is doing what it does best." 

The Gaza turned face and began to putter back to the ship. The slow rate was to give Artemis time to look at what the short skirmish had done to her beloved machine as her eyes flew over the panels and readouts that clustered her cockpit. 

Her propellant? Not gonna propel her for that long. Her Knuckle Buster? Could use a little love. The structural integrity of everything? Well it is a Gaza that just got hugged by a multi ton pirate mecha. 

The Gaza-C waddled into the hanger, shifting side to side more than actually walking. The knees seemed to be in as dire of a state as the rest of the Gaza. With a sickening series of shrieks and snaps the Gaza-C unfolded and stood up in its designated place, the cockpit getting flung open just after it stopped walking. 

Ginger took no time in bounding up to the open cockpit, shoving her face in the same motion.

"Artemis! I'm s-" the girl was silenced by Artemis's pilot suit being thrown in her face, wrapping around her head and muffling the red head's excited greetings. 

Artemis herself soon kicked out of the cockpit, somehow having found her tank top and a pair of boyshorts. Her disgruntled rumblings as she floated through the air mentioned something about 'running out of changes of clothes' before she grabbed onto one of the railings and tugged herself onto a catwalk.

"I need to use the bathroom!" Screamed the pilot before opening up a door that lead deeper into the ship, "Start after-conflict maintenance, I'll be there to help in a minute!" 

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“At long last… ‘ave I finally found you?” Hunter stared at the screen of his Quel hardly believing the shape before him. As if frozen in time the giant zeon ship loomed before him with the tiny specs of mobile suits swirling around it. He had been waiting in this spot for hours.

Patience was a trait one of his mentors had taught him and sometimes the prey would wonder before you if you just waited. With minimal systems activated and a black tarp wrapped around his mobile suit he doubted any of the zeeks spotted him. The silence was almost maddening, the only thing reminding him of his existence was his own rhythmic breathing. His original intention was to observe and to see how much of his enemy he could learn. But when the skirmish the Zeeks had been doing turned more serious his attention grew considerably.

The fools actually damaged themselves, mobile suits drifted in disrepair, pilots helpless. One of the Gazas managed to dock back with the ship and Hunter knew his chance for blood would be slipping past albeit it a brief opening. The Dra-c and the Gelgoog were painting a decent target, one he might be able to ambush quickly before moving on to the floating black Zaku.

“But is she ‘ere?” Hunter hissed in frustration. Even as he voiced his concern, his fingers danced over the controls booting up the mobile suit. As the visor of the Quel flared awake in anger Hunter called out once more, “are you ‘ere Erin? Will I finally get my revenge?” It seemed a moot point to ask when so many zeon units were begging for his merciful justice. He fired his thrusters, aiming his Quel towards the foolish zeon units. He brought his beam rifle up and began to slowly target the two suits huddled together.

(OOC: I’ll practice restraint, but I wanna stir the pot on the zeon side of things maybe a little excitement will wake you all up? I’ll change anything if I need to!)

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Artemis bounced between the walls of the ship as she barreled towards a door with a big green restroom sign posted above it in glowing lettering. In her haste she smacked her shoulder against the frame instead of opening the door. The girl let out a series of curses and exclamations of pain before she opened the door and stole her way inside. 

"Oi anyone in here?" Yelled the pilot after the door shut behind her. Silence was the only reply. She scanned around the doors to the stalls, trying to see if there was any occupied stalls and found none switched to the red occupied signal. "Oh thank god."

The farthest stall from the door soon became occupied with more Artemis than most rooms would be comfortable with. She waited until the door was shut securely before the tears returned from her time in space. Her hands covered her eyes as clear droplets began to stream out of them, filling the stall with tiny floating spheres. Artemis almost choked on her sobs as she curled up into a ball herself, tucking her knees under her chin. 

The crying session dragged out for a few minutes before with one last shivering breath she uncurled herself and took a deep breath. Her eyes had turned red around the edges from having her hands pressed against them and a small trail of snot oozed down from her nostril. She smacked the flush button and hesitantly peeked out of the bathroom stall door. Thankfully for her, the room was still empty.

Artemis kicked the toilet and grabbed onto the sink across from her stall. She took deep breaths as she stared herself down for a few moments before she started to clean herself up, but the redness around her eyes refused to subside. 

"Happy anniversary Serenity." The words came out choked from the girl's sore throat, "Why can't I get over you?"

She took one last deep breath before putting on the smile everyone expected from her and kicked her way to the door. She sailed through the open door to the hanger before long and glared at an unpainted Gaza-D that stood unused beside her Gaza-C, most of the paint around the chest and abdomen had gotten scrapped off from the Zaku's attack earlier. 

"How's my bitch baby lookin'?" Shouted out Artemis to Ginger. 

"Like it got drunk and slept with a pizza guy again!" Came the swift reply from the mechanic.

"It was only twice! You never let me live that down!" The words came between fits of giggles as Artemis sailed up to her Gaza-C, "What needs fixing?"

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Posted (edited)

For a split second, Teo could feel something in his gut. Something screamed at him, pulled him to turn around. Out of the very corner of his peripheral vision, he saw a dark, squared figure. “A Quel?!” Almost immediately after, far quicker than he was usually capable of, Teo fired the Gelgoog Stutzer’s boosters at full power. A warning blared on his main screen, then several. He was pulling higher than maximum lateral Gs, and he could feel it. For the short few moments he’d catapulted out of the way of the Quel’s beam rifle, Teo felt his arms and legs grow ten times heavier as he was forced downward into his seat, and just as suddenly, he’d fire the Gelgoog’s many maneuvering verniers, quickly changing the direction of the G forces. He was about to puke, black out even, but something inside of him, whatever it was, gnawed at his mind, implanting the need to survive.

Come on. Come on. COME ON!  It cried, a plea to Teo to fight. What for, he hadn't the slightest clue. It was a feeling at the very back of his mind, a near subconscious drive.

His visor would crack, and then shatter, and pieces of it would bury themselves in his cheek. Teo didn't notice.

He grit his teeth as the G forces quickly diminished while his movement was arrested by the verniers, and surely enough, Teo brought the Gelgoog’s Beam Machine Gun to bear. His vision, blurred by the rush of blood coming away from his head, slowly recovered as the Quel was brought into his crosshairs. The machine around him creaked and juddered as it recovered from the immense pull of inertia, and soon the distinct burp of rapid beam fire, muffled by the vacuum of space, filled his ears. A volley of mega-particle bolts would rain down on the Quel like a hail of deadly comets, each of the dozens of shots threatening to pose serious damage.

The beeping grew louder, more frequent as Teo pushed the limits of the Gelgoog Jager. He could hear the aging generator behind him start to whine with the sounds of overwork and low fuel, but he had to push on. A small utility arm extended from the machine’s front skirt armor, taking the Beam Machine Gun away while he reached for the Gelgoog’s other weapon: its Beam Naginata Splitter. It ignited, sputtering as the machine’s power reserves ran dangerously low, and for an instant the blade of golden energy looked less like a blade and more like a flame. Then, the two halves of the weapon split apart in both of the Gelgoog’s hands, and the blades shrunk, turning white as the energy was compacted into a far denser package. It surged forward, using the last of its reserves in an attempt to dispatch of the GM.

Teo had screamed himself hoarse.

Edited by Rabbidy
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Posted (edited)

As his beam missed Hunter hissed in frustration, “think you’re special ey?”

The Gelgoog dodged away and turned to face him it pulled out its beam chain gun and sputtered a volley at him. At their current distance the exchange of fire was little more than friendly banter going back and forth. Hunter flared his legs to thrust his Quel out of danger. He curled his mobile suit into an arching charge now, evading the trail of chasing laser bullets.

The Quel shuttered violently from the thrusters delivering him to striking distance. The Gelgoog flared its melee weapons to life in its hands.

“Oy that’s the ticket!” Hunter growled as he shifted his Quel to grasp the beam saber with its free right hand. He pulled the shield and rifle in close to his cockpit. As the distance closed quickly he swung down hard with the beam saber, the fuchsia blade came down with ferocity. Hunter grinned with a violent glee and a wishful hatred that only his weapons could satisfy.

”why fight?” He quizzed over the radio. “Why protect yer mates?”

Edited by Roromi
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Deftly, Teo willed the Gelgoog's arm to catch the Quel's arm by the wrist. Contact-based radio activated, allowing him to hear the enemy pilot. His blood boiled, and quietly he grit his teeth from behind his helmet. "Because I want to prove myself!" he spat. "I want to prove that I'm my own man!"

The Gelgoog's thrusters roared to life once more as its leg was brought up to brace against the GM's chest. With all its might, it begun to pull on the newer mobile suit's arm. Slowly but surely, the Gelgoog begun to gore the enemy mobile suit, tearing its arm free from the rest of its body. Electricity arced from the torn wires while oil and coolant begun to flow free from the tubes connecting the Quel's arm like blood from a wound.

With its other hand, Teo drove the beam naginata's condensed blade into the machine's shoulder, cutting upwards to slice and tear through the Federation machine's frame. Curiously, however, none of the Gelgoog's strikes were aimed at the vital sections of the Quel. Perhaps its pilot didn't want to kill his enemy.

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