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GBN 1.8 Gunpla Battle Nexus 1.8: Community Update


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Kyle wished he had the Trinames at the moment. He could easily take potshots when the enemy's got in range, but the Zeong wasn't built for that type of combat. "At least it has good maneuverability in space." He thought. "Flying around in this area will be a piece of-" Suddenly, alarms blared all around the mobile suit. A white Gunpla, the Bael, sped past him toward the Archangel. "Not much I can do against an IBO unit." The diver turned on his team comms, yelling out. "There's a Bael coming your way, guys!" Kyle grabbed the controls and pressed foward. "There's not much I can do in this spot, so I'm gonna go deeper into the debris field!"

The gray mobile suit ignited it's thrusters, moving from metal slabs to asteroids as it's monoeye moved around in all directions, looking for a possible target. Placing itself near a large piece of a broken ship, he found the closest enemy he could attack, but it was not an ideal one in the slightest. "Oh no." He said. "Is that the psychopath's new machine?" Kyle zoomed in on the unit, which looked slightly different from the last battle. Kyle sighed. "I guess it's my job to fight anyone I see..."

Kyle launched both of the 5 barrel particle guns, positioning them at their target. The two hands almost floated around in the zero gravity environment, aimed at the speeding machine. "Nerai utsu ze..." An uninterested Kyle uttered as he fired.

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A rainy afternoon. Raindrops poured from the sky upon the fuselage and wings of the cargo plane, and the sky was overcast. No chances of it stopping anytime soon, thought Aida as the TV in the cargo p

Carter drew in a breath as he arrived home, he head been out on quite the trip; Visiting someone quite important to him and all that. The male enterred his apartment and look around, it was devoid of

Fa squirmed uncomfortably in the seat of her new mobile suit. “New” was a relative term, but it was certainly new to her. A web of sparks occasionally danced out he hull of the Asshimar and she tried

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Hikaru analyzed the current plan and the forces in play that he could identify.  Part of him wanted to assist Rau and Creed respectively, but he also knew that someone had to take care of a certain Mobile Armor that bore a strong similarity to his own in function.  He knew that machine and was a bit irritated, though not surprised, to find that it too had turned a G-Defenser into a Back Weapons System as part of its upgrade path.  Having it intercept Creed wouldn't be ideal, but that was unlikely at the speeds they were going in opposing directions until Creed's first run on the Archangel was over.  The pilot thought for a moment.

Strike was a clear goal.  Hikaru had previously marked Emma as such as well.  If he went into the fight with the NPD Gundams, it would pretty much scream 'Beta Team, come intercede'.  It might even draw out the other Mobile Suits they likely had in play as well.  Otherwise, it was abandoning Rau to a three-on-one.

Noting these measures, Hikaru decided to try and work with this.  Between the irritation from the last fight and the fact they were both using Back Weapon Systems, the Diver hoped that Aida would be angry enough for target fixation.  Decision made, he decided to show off his own machine's similar capability by shifting into Mobile Armor mode to speed toward the 'main fight'.

The Beta Gundam headed for the trio of Gundams in support of the CGUE, trying to bait Aida into turning a one-on-three fight into a two-on-four.  The fact Hikaru had gone for Emma Sheen before might just make it more believable, so he went for her unit first.  The Long Smart Rifle of the machine discharged, the shot streaking toward her Gundam and also lighting up the battlefield a bit more than the typical beam strike.  Catching her was an ideal option, but not necessarily tenable.  "Still sporting that outdated version, huh?  How does it feel to fall behind in your own Mk-II's R&D?"

Of course, this taunt to Emma was meant to get Aida's attention as well.

Edited by MM007
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As a silver ZAFT machine appeared in its sights, approaching the Archangel at a high speed, Gundam MkII Unit 01 thrusted forward in anticipation too. “Damn Creuset…” I know he can feel me. I should take some distance from the Archangel and see how this goes. Now that i’m in the Federation’s latest Gundam-faced GM... “This is Unit 01! I’m taking Creuset down!” Mu, finally meeting Rau’s CGUE, fired his beam rifle three times, up, down and left, then thrusted to his right, folding his shield to grab a beam saber and swing it in the direction Mu knew Rau would take. We could finally settle this!

Aida, catching a fragment of the transmission, grinned in discontent. "Slippery bastards… they got through me. This is Beta One, pulling back! I’m going to take on Creuset and that Bael… i just don’t know how yet!" Just as he was about to turn Airbatel's Back Weapon System around, however, a pair of asteroids away, his main camera caught a glimpse of a very similar Mobile Suit to his, rapidly going on the other direction. Outraged at what he considered a blatant rip-off of the machine he worked hard to build and paint, the Airbatel’s pilot turned off its thrusters, used its AMBAC system to point in the direction of the new threat, and fired up his engines again to perform a 90º turn, following the enemy machine back towards his mothership. “Yeah, like hell you will!” His dual beam cannons had the range to hit him, however, he was too far away to line a reliable shot, so he concentrated on maneuvering through the field and cutting the distance between the two of them, until he was out of it, and saw the enemy machine fire a beam towards Gundam 02… Emma Sheen’s unit.

“Lieutenant La Flaga! Pull back, don’t go into that alone!” Ensign Sheen wanted to stop her subordinate, but then, the G-Defenser’s beam shined on her main camera. Emma could see her life flashing before her eyes, knowing that despite the fact she had raised her shield, that looked like too potent a beam. But a particularly thick piece of Junius Seven miraculously drifted by, and absorbed the majority of the impact, allowing for her composite shield to take on the rest. In the distance, unbeknownst to the Ensign, an obsolescent Mobile Armor carrier equipped with gigantic arms was flinging debris around to make its way through the debris.

 

- “Still sporting that outdated version, huh?  How does it feel to fall behind in your own Mk-II's R&D?” A radio transmission taunted Emma, coming from the enemy MA that had fired at her, now streaking through the explosion and heading towards her.

- “What? Control, the enemy is speaking on an open line! What should i…” Emma swinged a beam saber, held on her shield hand, at the G-Defenser, but erred. Right after, Aida’s GM-Defenser passed her too, buzzing her in a show of extreme flying skill, or sheer luck, and started firing at Hikaru with his Shot Lancer’s integrated machine gun. Beta One… the White Gundam… and my Mark II. Come think of it, Emma thought, as she pointed her beam rifle at the White Gundam’s Back Weapon System and fired, our three machines do look alike… too much.

- “Hey, rip-off! Do you think you’re smart because you know what i fly?” A furious Aida questioned Hikaru, as he stayed glued to his tail and took shots at him in a zero-g dogfight. “You’re nothing more than a copycat hired by a coward that won’t face me himself… but guess what?! Both of you lack the skill for that! I’ll show the whole lot of you!”

 

Kira, in turn, was shocked. Everything was going so fast, just like in Heliopolis. The battle had just begun, and while the slower enemy machines hadn’t shown up yet, Lieutenant La Flaga was already fighting the bad silver guy from back then, when he punched a hole through his home colony, and the woman with the Titans was taking shots at an unspecified Mobile Armor. Naturally, he thought of helping Mu, given Ensign Sheen seemed to be faring better in the backup department and because he had no love lost for the Titans. However, his computer warned of an alabaster object on a collision course with his Strike. Why of course, it was yet another Gundam, moving fast towards his ship. It moved from side to side, but he was easy to track. Rapidly, the Strike stared down the figurative sights of its beam rifle, and fired a shot at the enemy. “T-this is Ensign Yamato! I'm engaging a Gundam and...!” Suddenly, both Kira and those in the Archangel’s mission control who were looking at a feed of his camera were in for the shock of their lives, when the beam Kira had fired at the bone-white Gundam hit it right in the head… only to bounce off like small-arms fire. “AND BEAMS DON’T WORK ON IT!”

Meanwhile, in the Archangel’s bridge, lots of voices with headsets, some of which were Kira’s friends, had filled the bridge with noise.

 

- "The Orbital Guard can’t spare any Mobile Suits! They’re working to push away the fragments of Junius Seven so they don’t fall into Earth!"

- "Unidentified Marseille III-class on our vicinity! It’s heading for Junius…"

- "Ignore them! They’re mere junk dealers, trying to profit from our fight! They're not even worth warning shots."

- "Report incoming from Ensign Yamato in the Strike! Beams have no effect on an enemy unit!"

- "Damned ZAFT! We make Mobile Suits impervious to ballistic damage, and what they do next is put I-Fields on theirs! Tell the Ensign to close in and use his Armor Schneiders! If that thing comes close…" Jamaican was furious to find out about what he thought was the source of Bael's beam resistance, but was quick to give out more orders.

 

Following his orders, Kira put his beam rifle away and drew an Armor Schneider from its holster. He’d need to close in to be able to hit Bael, but it was the only option. Soon, he intercepted the white Mobile Suit, and tried to stop it in its tracks by having it fly into his shield.

Edited by Replicator
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He could almost hear the words as if being spoken in a shared room, Rau Le Cruset could sense Mu’s intentions and it didn’t upset him in the slightest. “That’s it Mu La Flagga! Show me what conviction you have now!” Even as he taunted, his rival let off a volley of pink shots arcing towards his CGUE. Rau easily dodged the shots, almost as if he was the one aiming them himself. “You’ll have to do better than that Mu!” Rau yelled out maniacally as he twirled the CGUE around the incoming fire, his mere movements mocking his most hated rival. His CGUE moved as if an extension of his will, it’s thrusters flaring wildly as he pulled in closer. “We both know this won’t be settled with such a low caliber of skill Mu!” 

The CGUE collided with the MKII each striking with their swords, both blocking respectively with their shields. “It makes no difference what you’re piloting Mu! This is all a meaningless struggle!” Rau howled as he batted away Mu with his shield and brought the gatling gun up to fire directly at the MKII. He was still close enough that Mu could probably recover and strike back at the weapon. Rau hardly cared, what he craved most in that moment was whatever venom Mu was able to concoct in response. 

—————

Creed’s sensors whited out for a moment and static fuzzed the screens as they blinked back on. He expected more of a jolt thinking a missile or something more devious had surprised him but the blast came from the beam rifle on the Strike. Luckily his nanofilament armor ate up the attack with little complaint. “Kira!” he hissed as he jerked back from the hit and faded into a tight loop to now charge the infamous Strike Gundam. Bael retaliated like a missile of it’s own, the golden blade of the gundam swiped across hard and wide, he hardly aimed as he went directly for a slash across the Strike’s chest. True he would hardly damage the enemy but the mere physics of the blow would knock the strike back, keeping the distance Creed wanted for such a fight. He grinned as his attack connected then decided to take a play book from his teammates. 

“Nobody has to die Kira…” his voice was calm, paternal even. “This conflict is greater than either of us, I don’t want to hurt your friends, the hostages, on the Archangel.” Creed was taking a gamble trying to reason with the boy but he had little else to loose from the exchange, and who knew, maybe something could come from it. “Please help me rescue those civilians onboard that ship! All we want to do is stop it from going to earth and killing more even innocent people down there! Please we could peacefully stop that ship together!”

Kira was supposedly a kind soul, the type of person who hated fighting at all. His greatest flaw was never understanding his limitations and foolishly trying to change the world on his own. If Creed only distracted him then it was a worthwhile tactic. 

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Shockingly, the orange and blue machine did nothing to protect itself from Kyle's beam fingers. "Must've caught him off guard." He thought to himself. The left hand of the Zeong was pointed almost directly down near the back of the opponent's Gunpla, causing damage mostly to the booster attached to it. One of the finger blasts did minor damage to its right thigh as the other hand fired, intended for the waist, but most of the attack ended up hitting the left GN Sword Rifle, with slight damage being taken to what looked to be the Age-2's shoulders. 

The Zeong floated near the debris as the almost weightless arms did their job. "Come on!" Kyle yelled out. "At least try to fight back, or else I'm gonna have to go for the others!" His arms reconnected with the Zeong as he flew somewhat closer to Astral in order to get a better shot. The diver stopped, once again pointing the ten fingers at the enemy. "I'll just try to end this quick then." He exclaimed, firing not only each finger, but the two waist mega particle guns as well. "Hopefully this'll take care of h-"

"HIT HIM! HIT HIM!" Something chirped near the feet of him.

Kyle almost fell over from the shock of a familiar voice. "WHAT?!?!" He screamed. "Why are you here?!"

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Shin did his best to try and center himself. He took in a deep breath and closed his eyes trying to think of what his brother might do, he was a great Gunpla battler but a better team player. Right as Shin could feel his brothers word come to mind there was a sudden jolt. Warning singles as damage was done to his Gunpla. In the midst of trying to be a better team player Shin had lost his focus and didn't even notice the attack coming. 

His rage began to swell as all he wanted to do was win but if he did it like last time how could he win. It was a team exercise so how can his two opposing ideas on Gunpla battle work together. It was then he heard the pilot over the coms. It was familiar…. It was knockoff Stratos taunting him. The time for indecision was done, the time for action had begun. 

He could see the MS readying itself for an all out attack now that he had telegraphed and goaded his enemy this was a terrible strategy. Even with the damage his booster and his Ms were reeling and ready for a fight. As if the Astral AGE had yet to even activate the eyes lit up with a bright red glow and the thrusters on the Arise and the Astral ignited with an intense light. With that the Astral was gone. This was space combat, the Astrals home field. With all the thrusters it was made to move as the blast fired his Ms was long gone. While one of his rifles was basically shot that didn't mean it was useless. As the Astral AGE flew overhead of the enemy MS it set the rifle to overload and tossed it before it fully got in range the Astral's other Arm came up shooting it causing a explosion that acted as both a light wall and an obstruction in the enemies light of sight. Shin figured he would be ready for a shot of even his blade so he smiled as he used his rifle to shoot a few pot shots to keep the enemy in around the same place as he tossed a Armor Schneider though the smoke wasn't sure where it would hit but it didn't matter

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"The heck? Am I being ignored?" Carter sighed deeply as he was in position, he was able to see people engage in fights from his spot on top of the Archangels tail, it gave him a mighty fine view indeed. The pilot leaned back and relaxed a bit.. he saw the Zeong engage someone, and he saw the GM Go forward as well "We're spreading thin.. that might not be good" He mumbled to himself, before going on comms to his allies "Yo! Try to stay within range of me, if you're having trouble I can back you guys up with some artillery!" He called out before shutting off his comms. 

He saw the Bael, flying around space.. and he smirked "IBO, huh? Alright, Bael.." he grabbed the 350mm Gun Launcher from his backpack and readied it, loading it with am armor piercing she'll "Meet the Cosmic Eras Dainsleif!" He fired the launcher and the shell shot out towards the Bael 

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Hikaru sped past Emma, her saber and subsequent beam strike failing to connect much as his own attacks had thanks to the speed as well as her own confusion.  The boy was already on the evasive, and inwardly was thankful that he'd missed.  He had trouble disconnecting with reality here and Emma wasn't a person he wanted to harm.  The immersion was dangerously high.  "Now we'll see how you Titans do without using civilians as shields!"  He said to the woman, both a reference to Gryps having civilians alongside that R&D base and a 'coincidental' reference to the child soldier they'd recruited in the Strike.  Hopefully that would cultivate further doubts in her mind.  Of course, Mu and Kira could likely hear this as well.

Thankfully, Hikaru's efforts were rewarded.  Instead of interfering with the others, Aida was following him instead.  Target fixation could be a wonderful thing when it was the enemy that wore the blinders.  The two Mobile Armors danced across the debris-filled space, Aida's Shot Lancer's Machine Guns discharging and striking debris around him.  "Hey!  I'm ticked off seeing yours too, but at least I'm not accusing you of plagiarism!  A G-Defenser based Back Weapons System is the obvious upgrade path for a Mk-II or Nemo-based machine!  And what do you mean 'hired by a coward'?  My team's leadership is out on the field, unlike yours!  Bask Om's just looking intimidating on the bridge of a ship twiddling his thumbs rather than fighting, right?"  He interpreted the comment as an in-character one, not even considering the out of character implications.

The boy kept talking.  He wanted to make sure the enemy was distracted by rage and chatter while luring him a sufficient distance away.  Avoiding devastating hits from a single chasing enemy wasn't too hard as long as he kept evading and did not fly straight.  Most Mobile Armors' weapons were fixed to the machine's center line with little in the way of an adjustable firing arc.  The boy's machine shuddered with a few hits from the scaled up Shot Lancer Machine Gun in spite of his evasion, but pure Gundanium Gamma armor was sterner stuff than the composites that the Shot Lancer was initially designed to contend with.  Were it not scaled up in size, the Shot Lancer may well have done nothing at all.  Hikaru thanked his luck that the enemy seemed not to have missiles.  This might be a good bit harder otherwise.

Finally, when far enough away to keep the enemy from breaking off back to the others so easily, the Super Beta Gundam made its move.  Dual-axis hip-mounted beam guns in the hip modules of the machine were already aiming rearward in this configuration to start with, and they shifted their positions slightly to track the enemy.  The quasi-psycommu controlled armaments fired upon the Super Airbatel as it pursued.  One was aimed at the machine's current path, while the other was aimed at what Hikaru deemed to be the most likely point to evade to.

Hikaru wondered how the enemy would respond to a Mobile Armor capable of shooting behind itself to produce its own cover fire.

 

 

Edited by MM007
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For a long time, Risu seemed to disappear from the battlefield, even staying quiet on team comms. The HUD marker for her machine on the rest of Team Alpha was way out of position, moving seemingly further and further away from the action. What was she doing? Eventually, though, the Higanbana’s marker stopped moving, and an unfamiliar, young voice would transmit through the team comms. “I’m here.” Her comm window finally opened to show the squirrel pilot, who had somehow changed into a more fitting outfit: a close-fitting red-and-black normal suit possessing a pink rabbit pin on the protective collar. “I see it. The ship.”

 

Risu had parked her machine inside a field of debris, having managed to sneak her way over towards the Archangel as ordered. She raised the Higanbana’s sole weapon, its Long Beam Rifle, propping the long, flat weapon against a piece of nearby space debris. Thankfully, the ship wasn’t moving at all, and her heads-up display showed a pair of markers over its bridge and its engine cluster, helping her aim at the critical components of the vessel even if she was wholly unfamiliar with it.

 

A brief pause punctuated the pull of the trigger, and with a low whine, the weapon begun to charge up to let loose a large beam of energy towards the bridge of the ship. If Risu could successfully destroy the bridge, she reasoned, then the fight would be over sooner. She fired again, and again, and again, every shot threatening to slam into the large vessel’s hull and pierce right through.

No doubt this would attract the attention of everyone on Beta team, but Risu was fine with that. She'd at least done her job: she'd be lucky to come out unscathed after this.

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"Don’t get cocky! I'm just warming up!” As expected, Mu La Flaga reacted swiftly, helped by the revolutionary response times of the Mark II, which ascended and struck from above, attempting to cut off the barrels of the gatling gun, and deploying his shield. Soon enough he was helped by Emma: Hikaru had stopped Aida from interfering with others in the battle, but there was no chance either would return soon, so Emma followed her orders not to disperse and went for the ZAFT commander. “If i finish you off, then…!” Unit 02, reloading its beam rifle, managed to get on the side of the CGUE. La Flaga was not amused by the idea:

- “Ensign! I can handle him, go help Kira!” - Mu, understandably, was afraid that Kira was all alone with such a strange enemy, which could dispel beams like one of those big Mobile Armors, but moved and reacted with the speed of a Mobile Suit, a very fast one at that. But more than that, he was irritated at the idea of somebody butting into his and his nemesis’ fight.

- “Don’t worry about Yamato! Keep that one steady! If we do away with him, the enemy will disarray!” - Ensign Sheen, however, was not convinced of the potential danger, so she kept trying to get the CGUE on her sights, and fired three times at the commander-use machine.

- “Ensign Emma! This is my fight!” Now using an authoritarian tone and not doing much to hide his anger, Mu attempted to direct Emma away from the skirmish, onto something else, before aiming his own shield at the CGUE. Below its tip, now that the shield was in its deployed state, a three-port missile launcher was visible. Mu fired, knowing Rau would likely manage to dodge the shots of the rookie test pilot, and not wanting to cut him any slack. It was not his fault somebody interfered, with or against him. This was war.

---

Yamato, meanwhile, was understandably shocked. Having brought a knife to a sword fight, the enemy predictably struck him first, with a physical blade. Any possible damage was sucked up by the Phase Shift System, but the battery went down by a percentage, and the impact knocked him back. Strangely, the ivory white Mobile Suit was not attacking him further. As he attempted to recover, from its fingers came standard communication lines, which anchored magnetically onto the Strike, and a calm, paternal voice pleaded with him. “Nobody has to die, Kira. This conflict is greater than either of us, I don’t want to hurt your friends, the hostages, on the Archangel. Please help me rescue the civilians aboard that ship! All we want to do is stop it from going to Earth and killing even more innocent people down there! Please! We could peacefully stop that ship, together!” Kira, while shocked that the enemy was trying to reason with him, did agree that the Titans were likely up to no good. He knew what they usually did. He had heard it from free press back in Heliopolis, neutral territory thanks to Orb. He had heard it from disgruntled personnel in the Archangel, and had even heard it from that enemy Mobile Armor which kept shouting about everyone’s hidden business as it fret around the battlefield, like some sort of armed political loudspeaker. As his Mobile Suit regained balance and he tried to get closer, taken by an impulse that not even he fully understood, it looked like the pilot of the Strike was open to a ceasefire and a conversation with the Bael’s pilot, even under such circumstances. But then, a 350mm projectile flew right over the head module of the Aile Strike, headed for the alabaster machine…

---

In the asteroid field, an Armor Schneider came out of the smoke and sped towards Kyle’s Zeong. It looked for a moment as if he’d be hit, but out of the dark, deep blue of space appeared a navy blue Gundam, which deployed a folding shield to catch the knife. Beta Four, which had patiently hid nearby, arrived just in time to abide by the orders of the team’s leader, and defend Kyle. As the knife stuck in the shield, the Titans GP03 aimed a collapsed bazooka, automatically deploying its telescoping barrel to prepare for usage and firing up its sensor to acquire the target. Using an open line, the NPD did what it was already notorious for, and taunted Shin. “You never had a chance anyways.” After this, the GP03 fired its bazooka at the Astral AGE, while speeding to close the distance between it and the AGE, as the rounds flied towards Shin’s machine. However, rather ingeniously, the weapon had been prepared for a highly mobile target beforehand. The magazine’s rounds in question were filled with shot ammunition.

---

In the opposite side of the field, Aida continued his pursuit. The young boy was capable, but Aida’s words confused him, prompting him to take him for someone who had just taken the campaign way too seriously. Aida on the other hand thought the boy was stalling, talking in-character stuff in an act of pure denial, to cover up what he thought were his intentions. Must think i’m an imbecile… “You don’t have the right to call the leadership of my Force anything, i am the leadership!” After piercing through an area full of debris in a violent dance, both G-Defensers got close to a big piece of Junius Seven, being pushed from behind by gray, blue and red GM Customs that were very reminiscent of Strike Daggers, to make it accelerate and push it away from Earth's orbit, or at the very least, stabilize it again within its bounds. Not too far from there, two Gundam-types duked it out: one had red accents and a big Japanese sword, the other had golden accents, and just one arm, which it put to good use firing a bazooka. A spectacular scenario, but neither of them was there for sightseeing. Soon, the white G-Defenser finally got on the offensive, and he noticed the dreaded waist INCOMs were starting to track him, but did not yet light up. Oh, this is gonna be good. You think you’re gonna catch me with my tie undone… to say something completely G-rated. Fine. I’ll play along… Aida, waiting for the moment, kept glued to Hikaru’s tail, and pondered whether to say something more… but then he saw the twin lights. NOW!

Two beams of light came out of the Beta Gundam’s hips, one aimed at the machine's current path, the other at what Hikaru deemed to be the most likely point to evade to. However, Aida had a trick up his sleeve from his days in that team from the past, and the Super Airbatel evaded both rays by splitting up in two: quickly separated by little propellant verniers and a swift tip of their main thrusters, the Airbatel flew under the beam directed at their path, while the GM-Defenser flew over it. Soon came the other beam, which did predict Airbatel’s path correctly, however it could not connect with the Mobile Suit, which was forcefully rammed down by the Defenser's underside, knocking both out of the way and docking both machines together again. "Rearward firing… clever, but you did not think you'd catch a Mobile Armor player by surprise with the oldest trick in our book, did you? It'll take more than half-hearted shots!"

---

- "Don't do it! Uh, hello?!" - In the Archangel's bridge, the communications officer Kuzzey Buzzkirk quickly pinged Executive Officer Badgiruel. "Miss Natarle! Kacooler is taking off in the Moebius Zero without authorization!"

- "The Zero?! That guy has a death wish, only a Newtype wouldn't get themselves killed on a Mobile Armor! Can anybody stop him?" Badgiruel, not in the mood for a loss, tried to have Kacricon stopped. But Jamaican stopped her instead.

- "Leave him be! Did you forget, Ensign Badgiruel? Newtypes are a myth. Our good old Kacricon should be able to handle it well. He is not a Titan for nothing."

The right catapult hatch opened for Kacricon to take off. "Stupid Hawk of Endymion, thinks he can steal my thunder? I'll snatch his! Moebius Zero, Kacricon Kacooler! Taking off!", he exclaimed, pulling forward the thruster lever. The engines fired up, and the Mobile Armor accelerated at full speed out of the hangar bay… only to be hit, rather unluckily, by the beam of an enemy Mobile Suit that was firing at the ship in a very haphazard manner. Losing two of the Gunbarrel pods and a portion of its fuselage, the Moebius Zero quickly spun out of control, its engines still burning fuel at the maximum rate, but now taking the machine in an uncontrollable spiral Kacricon had no way of stopping. As the orange Mobile Armor kept speeding away and crashed one of its two last Gunbarrels into a glass panel, detaching it from the frame and leaving it behind, only the faint screams of Kacricon Kacooler remained for a moment in their communications panel, before something lit up, far away.

- "AMELIAAAAAA-!" Static soon replaced the voice of the Titans test pilot, and Kuzzey cryptically made the announcement.

- "Moebius Zero, contact lost..."

- "Call back Beta Team and tell Anti-Air to give me a stronger barrage! We've got a hostile above that needs taking care of!" Captain Ramius, competently assessing the situation, told everyone what to do next, as one of the few cool heads that prevailed on the ship. It's going to be a long day...

---

<< CHANGE MAP >>

Just when Aida finally had the Beta Gundam in his sights for the counterattack, the square in his sight turned yellow, and his minimap's readings changed to that of a different area. He took his hands off the controls briefly to grab his head. "Oh, you slippery bastard, you made me change fields... And why are you yellow, did you just surrender in my face? You got what you wanted, didn't you..." Hikaru's eyes widened as he analyzed this change, his own systems similarly affected.  "That... was not me.  I'm not sure what's going on, but I don't like the look of this either. Think it's another secondary objective?"  The pilot maintained evasion, monitoring his sensors and not wanting his enemy to be able to get a lucky shot even if they were marked as neutral to each other at the moment.  Things had changed in the blink of an eye, and it was unlikely to be anything good. Both of them couldn't help but notice how they were now in orbit of Earth, when another voice taunted them through the open line.

"Heh. You make it so easy, i'm somewhat disappointed…" Out of nowhere, a potent and speedy beam illuminated the debris floating over Earth, in a trajectory towards the Mobile Armors. Both dodged, and were separated. Damn it! There's a sniper hidden around here. The voice kept speaking on the open line, which lately had been used a lot. "It was not much of a surprise. You two are so alike. It makes a little too much sense you're both double agents and work together. The question is… if you're not with ZAFT nor the Titans… who are your employers?" A new shot buzzed by, narrowly missing the Super Airbatel, which decided to turn into a Mobile Suit and hide inside an abandoned warship, brought there by the inertia of Junius Seven's wreckage. She's good. I don't see her anywhere. Maybe try to reason? I could learn a thing or two about the kid who keeps talking to digital characters.

- "Listen- you're firing at the wrong guy. I'm on your side! Why don't you let me come back to the Archangel?"

- "Tempting. But I can't. Federation Code 9-0-4, Title 10, Article 1-0-4 states ANYONE… who attempts to aid an enemy of the Earth Federation shall suffer death."

- "I don't see how that concerns me."

- "It concerns all of your team, because soon, i shall carry out all of your sentences, then take down the Versailles myself. Anyways, how nice of you to drop early. I'll put you two down first… As you don't really have anything new to offer!"

Yet another ray coursed through the new field of operations, and this time, it ignited the wreckage of a Salamis that was next to the Beta Gundam… Whatever lurked in the shadows, it was out for the blood of both Aida and Hikaru...

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Even though Creed was trying to appeal to Kira’s sensitive nature he wasn’t foolish enough to let his guard down. To the contrary he, was poising for another hit against the Strike, and could sense the hesitation with his opponent, when suddenly a blast from behind the Strike made him suck in his breath in anticipation. With hardly a thought he reacted in the only way he could think at the moment and that was to stab in at the Strike. The ducking and lunging motion hid his profile behind Kira’s machine just as Carter’s shotgun shot sprayed around them both. It was the Strike’s silhouette , and the distance of the shot which prevented major damage to Bael.

Creed still hissed at the near miss. Sparks flew from his sword thrust and the physics from the shot pushing the Strike into him as well. The duo spun around wildly. Creed tried his best to get behind the Strike once again based on the angle of the previous shot. He hesitated as he contemplated what to do. His ego demanded that he fly right up to the Buster Dagger and teach the pilot a thing or two, but he knew that warranted risk. No, he decided, he needed to stick to the plan and try to neutralize Kira. With the impact of the attacks what did that leave his estimate at now? 70? 60? There was only so much physical contact the Strike could handle before the battery gave way.  An idea cropped into his head then and he tried pining the Strike with his twin swords then and unleashed the throttle to maximum, pushing the Strike in front of him as he angled for Carter.

“You see what the Titans would resort to Kira?” he grimaced as he tried to gauge the boy’s response and aim them both while maintaining some cover. If he could keep Kira in the dark about his intentions, he might just pull this idea off. “They’re willing to kill you. Just to strike down their enemies! You can help me end this madness!” his tone grew slightly more emotional as he began to believe in his own words. These new NPDs were supposed to be something entirely else, something almost too real. The question nagged at Creed, would he care if he killed Kira during this encounter?

-----

Rau’s smirk didn’t evaporate as the counterattack came; in fact, he was counting on the Hawk of Endymion to react so predictably. He sacrificed the barrel of his machine gun and poised his sword in for a stab at the cockpit, however just as he was about to strike that sensation flared and he instinctively pushed away from the MKII just as the identical machine pulled up to his side to fire three shots at him. Those pink blasts were enough to sink a capital ship Rau knew and he grunted as he had to break away and dodge.

The barrage didn’t let up as Mu followed up with three missiles as well, an easy enough attack to avoid thanks to Rau’s previous dodges. “you still lack finesse Mu!” Rau taunted as he used his momentum from his dodges to sling his CGUE around for a high-speed swipe at the MKII’s head. Rau had to admit to himself that the black Gundam was making up for any lack of skill Mu had piloting a mobile suit. He began to wonder how its abilities would be amplified by a coordinator pilot. His gaze lingered on Unit 2 for just a moment before he regained his focus on his attack, if unchecked his swipe would likely sever the MKII’s head and saber mounts. He had to keep his encounter closer to Mu in order to avoid the beam rifle and to take advantage of the sluggish responses of the natural pilot, gifted or not. “Are you going to let someone else fight your battles Mu? I expected better from you!” he howled as he swooped in.

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The light and smoke from the rifle’s explosion almost blinded Kyle as the Astral began to counterattack. “Damnit!” He yelled out. “You distracted me, Haro!” The red sphere jumped up, bonking him on his helmet. “Charo! Charo!” The toy exclaimed. The diver looked perplexed. “Charo?” He questioned as the droid bounced up and down. “New name! New name!” It responded. “New name?” He thought. “I never gave you a name, although I should’ve called you that from the start… Oh God! He’s becoming more sentient! These new NPD’s must be rubbing off on him.” Suddenly, shots began to fly toward the legless machine. “Dodge! Dodge!”

“I KNOW!”

One of the pot shots slid across the right shoulder’s armor, disintegrating part of it. “Oh man! I gotta get out of this area!” Kyle pulled up on the controls, igniting all of his thrusters, but not before another shot pierced the skirt of the unit. “Damage! Damage!” The diver started to get quite annoyed, kicking the series mascot away from him. “Could you please be usefu-“ The sphere ricocheted off the side of the cockpit, smacking him in the head once again. Kyle sighed. 

“I can’t catch a break. Oh no no no!” An Armor Schneider was heading straight toward him, when suddenly the Titans GP03 appeared, blocking the attack from hitting Kyle. “Beta Four!” He said. “Thanks.” The NPD was already heading to the enemy, firing at and taunting the crazed pilot. “Alright then.” Kyle exclaimed. “It’s time for a beatdown!” The diver launched forward to the others, hoping to also take the Astral Age out. He let the beam hands loose once again, aiming at the sides of the machine. He assumed that his attacks would be a longshot, but felt that the GP03 could distract his opponent.
 

Edited by FrostyFoster
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Shin felt confident in his attack if nothing else it would have done decent damage, but bursting through the smoke came another enemy combatant. As the Titan stopped his dagger Shin gave a foul look at both fighters. A two on one match normally wouldn't be a problem for Shin but he was too distracted. As the Gundam frame charged at him firing, shin fired all thrusters trying to evade but his reaction time was far too slow and a large portion of the blast hit his unit center mass. Bits of armor flew off his unit and the AGE unit was thrust back into a nearby asteroid. 

Alarms sounded as Shin sat in his cockpit his hair now draped over his eyes. Was he gonna lose…. How the hell could all those people talk of teamwork but show him none in return. The other seemed to have a plan while they just kept going the same as last time. It was then that Shin noticed something. He extra armor on his chest had come off revealing a faint blue glow from AGE's A sensor. While most of his Gundam had a red glow that was as fierce as fire this light was different kinder, and seemed off from the rest of the Gundam. Shin looked upon this light and a slight smirk crossed his face. As the enemy unit taunted Shin he retorted 

"Sorry pal, but losing isn't an option." Shin silenced the alarms that had been blaring his using now slowly starting to lurch away from the hunk of rock it had been so kindly plastered to. 

The Zeong had also started to make a move but none of that mattered Shin was done worrying about the what ifs and if onlys. Now he was focused… on the kill. The blue light ignited from the A Sensor seemed to travel through the machine bursting forth. In a blazing flash of his thrusters he was gone. The speed was great but his direction was clear, the Titan. Heading straight for the Gundam the Astral AGE's blades slid down from his left shoulder and onto the wrist forming both a shield and a blade. Using the GN Rifle to fire at the Zeong while still rushing the Titan. 

As the AGE got close he slashed with his blade toward the barrel of the bazooka but this was a faint, he didn't care for the gun for all he cared he would happily miss. However At some point he had dropped the GN Rifle and also rigged it to explode using the blast to propel him into the Gundam with greater speed. As he collided with the Gundam he smiled and used the head of his Gundam to bash against the titans. Breaking off bits of his crest and the faceplate of the AGE. 

"Don't worry! You never stood a chance anywho! They don't call me the raging beast for nothing!" With that the AGE pushed the Titan off and tried to kick it into an asteroid. As the AGE stood there it took a grim pose like a wounded animal ready to take everything and everyone with him. The clanking of the gear and groans of the metal could still be heard as of the machine was roaring and ready for action

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"Dammit-" Carter said before getting on comms "Kira move! I need a clear shot!" He shouted before noticing a beam cut In through the space behind him.. someone had gotten close enough to shoot at the ship "Gah- hold that thought, the ships under direct attack!" Carter called out for his team. He changed sides, going from the tail end of the archangel over to the middle to protect it, he was looking for where the shots came from, frantically so. 

"You know what? How about this?" H switched over to the Anti armor shotgun and started blasting the direction the beams were coming from, he had to get them away from the ship before Something worse happens 

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Hikaru's machine kept moving in its Mobile Armor mode, managing not to get caught in the resulting blast from the Salamis.  Grumbling, Hikaru sent out over his comm link with his team.  "Hikaru to Alpha Team, I lured Beta's leader away only for us both to be ambushed by some sniper.  We're both stuck on an adjacent map dealing with a secondary hostile Federation objective."  All the while, the sensors normally dedicated to Long Smart Rifle's use scanned for the source of the shot while he kept up his evasive maneuvers.  If he could keep the enemy from getting a bead on him, they could make this work.

He established a laser comm link with Aida, though he didn't dare maintain the link longer than he could say  "Still thinking I planned this junk?  Switching to channel 195."  The Diver still needed to prioritize evasion over the comm link.  Once he switched channels again away from laser and waited a moment, he sent a communication.  "We both have high speed machines suitable for evasion and recon.  We should probably put aside our fight for later, triangulate the source of the shots, and take this one out as quickly as possible.  Are you up for that?"

Edited by MM007
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Streaks of amber light filled Risu's vision, no doubt the enemy returning fire. With widened eyes,  and andrenaline coursing through her veins, she scanned her surroundings. Debris dominated her vision after the shots, though in the heat of the moment, she elected to continue shooting instead of changing position, as any experienced pilot should. However, the Higanbana would stop shooting as soon as its pilot spotted a humanoid shape. There was no doubt in her mind that this was the one shooting at her earlier. Her heart begun to pound, and even though the reality that this was just a game was very present in her mind, it did nothing to dull the sense of danger she'd created in her mind. As if by instinct, Risu begun to steer her gunpla towards the Comet Dagger, and for a single, almost-imperceptible moment, the normally-green sensor lights of the Higanbana turned to purple.

 

Higanbana charged forward at full throttle, rushing towards the Archangel at incredible speed. If there was any doubt surrounding the quality of its construction, all of that would be swept away at the sudden burst of movement. Violently, it fired its comprehensive suite of maneuvering thrusters, shoving itself downwards below the Comet Dagger's field of view before resurfacing just a few short meters in front of it. The singular Long Beam Rifle it carried begun to glow with a powerful heat, turning the weapon into an elongated heat sword. The gunpla raised its weapon to strike, at first aiming directly at the Dagger's chest to strike directly at its pilot with a single thrust, but instead used the movement as a feint, surging past the Beta Team machine to instead strike at the Archangel itself up close.

 

Almost immediately, the Earth Alliance vessel's array of point defense turrets raised from their hardpoints, coming alive with unending volleys of machine gun fire towards the Higanbana, which in an uncharacteristic display of skill considering its pilot, weaved between the turrets' arcs of fire with ease and grace as it slashed across various points of the vessel's hull with its Long Heat Claw.

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As a precaution, Aida accelerated again, using the Super Airbatel's more mobile mode to escape his hideout at high speeds, figuring it wouldn't be long until the woman's sensors found him anyways. Sneaky bastard… Not long after, a laser communication reached him and instructed him to tune into Channel 195. Once he did, he heard the Beta Gundam's pilot offer him a temporary truce to hunt down the Titans sniper. He just couldn't believe what he was hearing, and accordingly, he responded with quite the sarcastic tone:

- "Sure, sure! We'll take her down together, and when we're done, you can shoot me in the back again! That's something I can trust a mafioso with!" Taking things down a notch, Aida had seemed to be growing wary of the others' intentions to make him lose his temper, but still couldn't quite keep his tone down.

- "Mafioso?"  Hikaru asked, working to keep up his evasion and his distance from Aida, not only to avoid being shot at, but also to try and coax his enemy to shoot at two different targets and get a decent bead on his enemy's location. "What are you talking about?  I shot you in the back because you showed your back to an enemy in a team battle. There's a time and place for stuff like that, and it's when we both agree to such terms and don't have teammates to disappoint if we lose!"

- "Come on, that doesn't explain what you're doing now! We both know why you're so eager to throw yourself into my works like a wrench! You harass people for a living, in a video game no less! And boy, did they hire the right person..." Aida kept evading the shots, which got more frequent as the sniper started to see the two Mobile Armors still weren't quite concentrating their efforts on finding her, but rather bickering and keeping each other in check. "I do admit I'm still quite amused at the Gunpla Mafia for going the extra mile… hiring a guy that adds insult to injury, and tries to hunt me down with a better version of MY machine. How much are you getting paid? Twenty grand?"

- "What the heck is the 'Gunpla Mafia' and why would they pay that much just to mess with a guy?  How would they even get someone in Beta for that? I interfered with you because you're the enemy leader and I wanted to lure you away so our IBO machine could wreck the others without you butting in!" He evaded another shot, showing that hitting an evasive Mobile Armor with a sniping weapon was pretty difficult. His keeping an eye on the target probably helped in his task of trying to lull her into making a mistake and exposing her exact position.  The man was irritating, however. "Besides, my machine's not a GM-III. Its lore is that it's what happens when the Titans' Refined Barzam gets rebuilt into something more Federation-aligned after their fall for R&D. The G-Defenser is supposed to be a testbed for the Re-GZ's Back Weapons System. It's an obvious development path!"

- "I… well, at least you put thought into it." Aida, hearing the boy casually talk about his machine's lore despite the impending danger, was reminded of himself and his crew, the 08th Thespian Mobile Suit Team, the fun they had doing reenactments of canon battles with custom, but plausible UC Mobile Suits, the lore behind them. Matter of fact, Gundam Generation would've been a blast for all the members that weren't there with him. I'm starting to think this kid actually has nothing to do with them… Starting to lose interest in the Super Beta Gundam, he used his improved sensors to take a snapshot of the last beams to fly near it and traced them back to one of the colony wall segments. Unknowingly, he left his microphone open for Hikaru to hear think aloud. "... don't think she's there anymore. Probably changing spots in between shots."

- "You're right.  Not shooting too many times from the same spot is basic sniper doctrine to avoid being easily pinpointed." Hikaru responded. He had his own sensor systems on and sweeping for anything of note, expanded for the purposes of employing the Long Smart Rifle. "Scanning...hey, is it just me or did her voice sound very familiar? If we can recognize her, we might get an idea of the machine we're facing...or at least its development tree or general type."

- "Sadistic lady pilots… not many names come to mind, but hell, she might not even be from the UC, what if they shoehorned some alternate universe character into the Titans? Wouldn't be the craziest thing so far..." Aida's thoughts trailed off again for a moment until an alarm brought a strong glimmer in a portion of the battlefield to his attention. However, it was just a fleeing Gold Frame, disappearing from view after being defeated by Lowe Guele's Red Frame, probably to enter the atmosphere in a support ship or with a ballute. "Get off, Gina! Take that blinding chrome away!"

- "Hmmm." Noting this, and recalling Red Frame's alliances, Hikaru decided to send a warning. Firing off a laser communication toward Lowe, he sent the following message. "Hey, Junk Guild. Hostile Federation sniper in immediate area.  Be on your guard and keep moving. You're on a battlefield!" Monitoring for a response, he still shifted to his radio and spoke with Aida in response.  Juggling comms was a bit dangerous in this situation.  "You're right. I don't think Gold Frame there has the opportunity or the armament to shoot at us, either… and should have a male pilot anyway."  Hikaru said, regarding the Sniper's general location. He sought landmarks where they could have moved to or the glimmer of an enemy scope.  "Want to pull a move out of Amuro's playbook and circle around so the sun's behind our backs?"

- "For sure… though, why do you even bother warning them? I don't think this woman's out for even more trouble firing at-"

- "Thank you, AEUG! Is this it?" - Before Red Frame and the HOME disappeared into Earth's gravitational pull, their response got all the way back to both of them, with a picture of a dark blue Mobile Suit hiding in one of the nearby ruined agricultural blocks, a large rifle in hand.

154183298_CimasGP04-1.thumb.png.959b9d2d3a7a06f10dbe5470aed6ce67.png

- "That looks like a GP04… you don't think the Cima Fleet has joined the Titans full time?" Aida felt dumb for not having tried such a thing before. "Well, we know where she's now, if we don't strike fast before she can change locations again, we'd be wasting a golden opportunity..."

- "Yep, thanks and good luck!" Unsure if the communication made it out or not, Hikaru still tried to send a farewell message to the Red Frame. "Yeah, let's go. The back to the sun trick will only work if we're already relatively close to that approach vector, but we can still approach while using the local debris. If you want to approach from a different direction and try to pincer her, we can do that as well." Hikaru said, heading off. Once underway and watching for enemy fire, he commented. "You know, this reinforces my headcanon. My belief was that the GP02A had no reason to exist with how spread out or dug into the underground Zeon Remnants were, and being leaked to Zeon at just the right time was too convenient. I think the politicians and officers that made the Titans set up the Delaz Fleet to give themselves a reason to reorganize and consolidate power. And Cima would have been wonderful insurance that Delaz died if he ever got too close to victory. Seen in that light, her popping up as a Titan makes sense."

- "You did your homework on your team. My crew could use somebody who even thinks of the politics in this place. And uh, we'll do the pincer thing. Pick a side and I'll get her back." Aida put his thrusters to use, and sped towards the agricultural block too.

- "Yeah, I figured. A shame the Blossom probably isn't around. That one was interesting too and would be feasible with the current tech level." Hikaru said as he complied, moving to the right and a bit upward, choosing the best arc in 3D space that would hinder his opponent's visibility. Aida understood the hint, and the Super Airbatel moved to ambush from the left and descended a little, so as to approach from the exact opposite direction as Hikaru’s Beta Gundam. "If i can make her shoot at me, then she'll likely be focused on my machine through her scope. That'll be when she's not monitoring her surroundings as closely, right? If she shoots at you first, I'll do the same."

- “Lead the charge, then.”

The Airbatel reached a stable speed and predictable course, giving Hikaru a speed to beat. Aida hoped Hikaru would fly into Cima’s view first and that he’d be the one to get the kill. However, at the last moment, he matched his speed with Hikaru’s. Maybe there’s another angle to this. “Ready or not, here it comes!” Just before crossing the threshold, Airbatel undocked from the GM-Defenser, which continued on its way at full speed, and was picked up by Cima's sensors. The Titans Chief of Internal Affairs raised her weapon at the speeding Mobile Armor, and fired at a nearby asteroid, blowing it up into smaller pieces that the GM-Defenser collided with, giving her a stable shot for it. But when she was about to shoot, she noticed the Airbatel was missing. Then, her sensors picked up a much bigger threat: the Airbatel had cut the distance to her unit, and was approaching her with a beam saber drawn. As if this weren't enough, Hikaru's Super Beta Gundam approached and took aim with his Long Smart Rifle. While the Airbatel had her attention in that brief moment but had yet to fully close into a dangerous range, he fired his own rifle with the aim supported by his quasi-psycommu system. Airbatel surprisingly refused to use its beam saber upon getting to melee range, instead preferring to kick the GP04 with its feet. The Long Smart Rifle's beam soon arrived, and did away with the Mobile Suit's head cleanly. Had Aida not done that, the beam would have done away with the entire Mobile Suit in one fiery explosion. As a finishing touch, taking advantage of her confusion and blindness, Aida now used the saber to cut the Gerbera's right arm, which floated away, still clutching its sniper rifle, then the waist. Cima was left with only a torso, a left arm, and a ballute.

- "That's what i'm talking about!" Next, Aida used the best of his acting skills to try and intimidate Cima. "Try something funny, i dare you!"

- "Armament secured. So...what happens? You left her alive, but she'll just be freed if you bring her back to your vessel. If anything, she'll rat you out and do what she intended to your team. Is she my prisoner?" Hikaru transformed his machine back into Mobile Suit mode, and had claimed the weapon and the arm of the Gerbera to make sure no other enemies got a hold of it. It wasn't a bad find.

- "I have a use for her ballute. And it’s on Ms. Garahau’s best interests to be useful right now..." In that moment, unexpectedly, the Gerbera's torso ejected its remaining arm and fired up its ballute's front and back thrusters, going “upwards”. "I can't believe she's escaping on a stupid torso! Come back!" The flying torso promptly gained an initial lead, but before any of the two doppleganger machines could go after it, a dark, indeterminate, Mobile-Suit sized silhouette took it away and disappeared from view in one swift motion. "What the... Argh, you have to be kidding me! GMs don’t have re-entry measures! I guess i’ll have to rely on being on that hangar before re-entry or i’ll fry up."

- "... that’s why I took her big gun. In case she had allies nearby." Hikaru said, keeping his sensors open. He decided not to point out how boned Alpha Team might be by this. He kept his eyes on Aida, deciding not to just… shoot him right off the bat. It just seemed rude to him, after working together and while they weren’t marked as enemies. "What now, back to the battlefield?" He also scanned for energy signatures and the like, in case there were escape pods or other things of note out there.

- "I don't think there's much of a choice..." Both of their signatures started flashing back and forth from green to red. A notification also reached them:

 

<< MAP MERGE >>

Edited by Replicator
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<< Archangel is approaching orbit!>>

Aida read the notifications and understood that the Archangel had moved onto their map, along with their teammates. Supposing that Hikaru was likely to shoot him as soon as it wasn’t considered ‘bad etiquette’ anymore, he fired up his thrusters and docked with the GM-Defenser, which was flying towards the battlefield again and took the Mobile Suit with it. “Not too shabby!” were his parting words, as he put pedal to the metal, looking to gain a lead on him and get back in the fray. Quickly, he checked in with his minimap, which showed the Archangel moving fast towards a yellow line he supposed was the goal. If we can make the ship last just a little more, this one’s in the bag! Opening his team line, now that he was allowed to make contact again, he checked in with his team. "Alright, what seems to be the most urgent thing…?" He then saw the chaos unfolding next to the Archangel's bridge, and saw that was no good. My loadout is lighter, my top speed is higher. I should be able to do one thing before the pesky Mobile Armor gets here and goes back to trying to take me out… so I better make it count!

Kira was still hesitating, but when the Bael started pushing him around, he figured something was very wrong, he was using him as a shield. A transmission from his friend Kuzzey on the Archangel’s bridge, pleading for him to steer clear, made matters even clearer. He needed to get rid of that white Mobile Suit, but how? He frantically checked on all of his weapons, and found one that could help him break free. He just needed to wait for the right moment…

Mu was starting to lose his patience. The dreaded Creuset had evaded all of his attacks, and then some by Emma. How come… even with the Titans’ latest Mobile Suit, i still cannot strike him down? Mu’s Unit 01 barely evaded decapitation with a last-moment maneuver, however, Rau’s blade cut one of his saber mounts diagonally, damaging the saber’s emitter but leaving the systems relatively untouched. Lieutenant La Flaga quickly retaliated with a swing of the beam saber he already had, intent on severing one of the arms of his enemy as payback. “You will not win this one!”

The situation near the bridge had gotten out of control, and when her superior officer Jamaican brought that to her attention, Emma’s Unit 02 quickly sped towards Strike and Bael. She did not know what could be done to stop the beam-repelling Mobile Suit, especially given she had chosen to sortie with a beam rifle. That did not stop her from trying to buy the ship some time. Finally, out of options she chose to rush the white MS, and hoped that her seat’s shock absorbers would tough most of the impact… “Gundam, please hang on!”, she said, quoting one of the most common childhood heroes of the Universal Century.

Beta Four quickly found herself under attack by a berserker, who brutally rammed her GP03 and sent it into an asteroid. The dark blue Stamen crashed into the space rock, having taken a beating on its torso and head areas, cracking the torso front camera and the one in the back of the head. Swiftly and without time to waver, the Gundam recovered and accelerated towards the Astral AGE, unsurprisingly unimpressed by its display, seeing as it was piloted by an NPD, and a fairly stoic one at that. As it approached the AGE, it fired the last of its shot ammunition rounds, before discarding the bazooka and folding back its shield to deploy back if needed. Before reaching the enemy machine, it crossed its arms in an X, while the folding arms built into the forearms deployed to fetch beam sabers. Just as the GP03 got to melee range, the beam sabers reached their respective hands and turned on. Then, the Titans Gundam made one swift motion forward and to the sides with both sabers, looking to trap and destroy the AGE with them. “I’ll accomplish my mission, takes what it takes.”

Aida, of course, saw the one in the most need of help was Carter, who was struggling with the Higanbana, a Mobile Suit that barely moved last mission, but was now slicing through the turrets of the Archangel and threatened to disintegrate the bridge, as soon as they could lock onto it. Damn, only an 80s training montage gets you this good in such a short time! More on my platter… Speeding towards the enemy MS, he quickly switched to the Airbatel’s Mobile Suit mode, ejected his Shot Lancer’s cartridge and loaded another, before firing carefully aimed barrages at the Higanbana, and trying to keep it between him and the Comet Dagger, so as to confine it between the two enemy machines. “This ship doesn't have Phase Shift, but physical ammo is the only chance we have! Carter, we don’t have much time, let’s mess this one up before the other one comes in!”

Kira finally saw a chance to free himself when the small camera on his waist armor determined he could have a chance to hit Bael with a surprise attack. Running out of time, Strike fired its remaining Armor Schneider at Bael from its storage on the left, hoping it would hit the Gundam somewhere. The knife flied at its target, and deployed on the way to the enemy, who would have to let go of Kira, he supposed, lest he took an arrow to the knee… no, wait, a knife.

Edited by Replicator
somebody drop a colony on me
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“Wow that’s cool!” Creed’s son gawked as the man showed him the iconic scene of the Freedom appearing in Joshua to protect the Archangel. The boy pawed at the outstretched phone to replay the scene again. “Whose the pilot again?” The boy rested his head on Creed’s chest as they lounged on their chair watching the anime clip. Marco chuckled, “Kira Yamato! One of the strongest pilots to exist in the entire Gundam franchise!” The boy scrunched up his nose as he watched the Freedom blast away at the locked on enemies. “Does he pilot anything else?”

Marco grinned at the question and answered, “later on he goes on to pilot the Strike Freedom which is named from both his previous mobile suits, the Freedom…” Marco shook the phone to emphasis his point, “and the Strike, which he piloted before this machine…” the boy shot a look at his father. “Was the Strike strong?” Smiling all the wider Marco replied, “for the era it was deployed, yes. It even had the ability to change striker packs to equip mission specific gear…. Do you want to see?”

The boy lit up at the offer and nodded his head, “Oh yeah! Kira sounds pretty cool!”

***
The tempo between sparks and flashes picked up violently as the Higabana relentlessly attacked the Archangel with a skill Creed didn’t think Risu possessed. With that one attack panic set in with the veteran for he knew his time with Kira he would be sorely pressed. Kira responded in kind by sending one of his knives into Basel’s knee. If they were on Earth it would have impaired his mobility but in space it was superficial damage at best.  “Acts up” Creed muttered as he returned his attention to the enemy before him. “Sorry kid!” He yelled out as he went all out. Right-right left, his blades snapped out hit after hit against the cockpit of the strike. Each slash spewing out a rain of sparks from phase shift attempting to protect itself. Growling in frustration Creed locked his wings up over his shoulders and began firing his electromagnetic cannons into the Strike at point blank. Each shot and each swipe pummeled into the Strike with a dizzying display of intensity.

Hikaru’s voice cracked over the comm, the boy mentioned something about a sniper and field displacement. The plea for help sent Creed into a fury as he picked up the pace of his assault, “I don’t have time for you my teammate is in danger!” Creed yelled. Black smoke billowed around the Strike from the repeated cannon fire and more and more debris seemingly bled off the Strike. Something inside of Creed’s head told him to stab now and so he did. Bael retracted it’s right sword to dive into cloud covering the belly, the cockpit of the Strike. He half expected the phase shift to push the attack away but he was stunned as the weapon cleanly cut forward. 

His initial thought was Kira had gone berserk and was now coming around for an attack but when an explosion erupted from his stroke and the head of the strike banged into his camera he realized he had taken down Kira. Bael along with pieces of mobile suit flew back from the explosion. He winced at the brilliance on his displays and was stunned again as he saw that his heads up display was confirming that the Strike was no more. 

His hands trembled, though Creed couldn’t tell if it was from excitement or… “disgust?” He whispered to himself. He caught his breath in his mouth and took a gulp. His reverie didn’t last long as a MKII Gundam charged directly into him. He was certain that if physics were a concern for him he would have gotten whiplash from the impact. The black Gundam was shoulder bashing him from his left side, both suits went out wildly from the impact. And while his sensors flared in warning and minor damage, he knew he could recover faster than the “flesh and blood” that was the enemy pilot. He fought the controls to bring his right blade aligned with his target for a stab. Unlike the Strike, this one didn’t have pesky phase shift. “My friends need me! Get out of my way!” He growled.

—————-

Rau hissed as his swipe missed the head of his most hated of foes. His strike wasn’t without merit as his blade cut through the saber pack on the black mobile suit. That all too familiar sensation reverberated in his head in a warning just as the MKII came around to swipe his Gatling arm clean off. He was going to loose, at best he was on even terms with the Hawk of Endymion, but out numbered as he was he knew he couldn’t cleanly defeat that cursed man. “I think I’ll take my prize Mu!” Rau yelled as he cocked his sword arm and snapped the weapon in a Hail Mary. The sword spun out at the MKII with impeccable aim, twirling for the cockpit of the machine. Rau hardly cared if the attack connected, as he reached out with his free hand to grab the beam saber floating in front of him. With his prize in hand he flared his thrusters and swerved the CGUE around in retreat. 

As he jetted away he studied his display, intrigued by the damage done to the legged ship. He activated his com unit to all friendly forces. “It looks like we accomplished enough today, all forces retreat back to the Vesalius.” The masked man could hardly contain a grin as he looked at the ebony hilt in his hand. Next time they met, he would at least have even footing with Mu again. 
 

Edited by Roromi
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The Astral Age made it clear that the fight was mainly between him and Beta Four as he attempted to dodge the GN Rifle’s blasts. Only the last shot managed to hit, destroying one of the smaller thrusters on the unit. “That might cause some problems.” He thought to himself. His intention was to, once again, fire at the machine while it was distracted with his ally. However, he watched as the GP03 ended up slamming directly into one of the nearby asteroid. Going to help the machine, an idea popped into the diver’s head. “Idea? Asteroid?” Charo chirped. “You read my mind, Charo!” Kyle responded. “Who knows? In this virtual world, he COULD’VE actually read my mind!” 

As Beta Four began their counterattack on the crazed diver, Kyle began his assault to help. He looked around for the largest asteroid he could find in the wreckage. Jetting to the biggest rock nearby, he put the Zeong’s hands directly on it. Even with zero gravity, the size of the asteroid was proving to be a challenge for the diver. “Alright, little buddy.” He yelled. “Help me out here!” Charo jumped on the controls and push one of the joystick with him. In reality, it wouldn’t mean too much, but the asteroid did slowly manage the move toward the two other players.

Once it was at a nice pace, the Zeong’s hands pushed off the rock, as Kyle watched it head to the back of the Astral Age. Launching it’s hands, they floated into the positions the diver wanted them to. “Perfect.” He thought. “One big rock could be a challenge, but he could still avoid it.” Kyle fired each of the finger guns, aiming all around the asteroid. “But tons of rocks won’t be avoidable!” The chunks flew forward in the direction of the enemy, as Kyle hoped the distraction would help Beta Four finally finish this. 
 

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Shin looked up as the Astral AGEs gears, and metal roars again. Seeing the unit charging him he smiles. The shot is fired but with the unit's right arm as a shield he moves slightly to the left. Dodging most of the but still taking out plenty of armor on his arm. With his left arm blades he planned full on to clash with the machine head on. As they closed in on each other Shin could see all the small meteors flying toward his machine.

Taking this as a sign he dashed back. They worked pretty well as a team. Shin was an all out brawler and really he didn't mind the fight but he had to make sure it was all on his terms, and all these asteroids gave his enemy far too much cover. With that he took his other two bladed wings and detached them giving him another large blade. While his right arm was messed up the least it could do was hold the blade and slash a few meteors. He rushed headlong into the now meteor swarm. Pushing the limits of his thrusters and making his way through the field for the most part taking out all the meteors but still he was getting a bit of damage from some of the smaller ones pelting the machine. He used his thrusters and speed to dodge both machines and pass them and head directly for the ArchAngel. However as he passed them a meteor flew right into one of main boosters thrusters causing him to lose much of his speed. 

"Damn…. Guess that's what I get for trying to push the thrusters like this." He knew if he could get close to Archangel he might be able to even the odds. This unit in his head could handle the two but since he didn't plan on a 2 on 1 match he forgot to complete the booster fully. It was his "teams" fault. They were supposed to work together that's what they all said and wanted but in the end it was still a free for all

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Carter's eyes widened as he saw himself get rushed down by the enemy mobile suit "Oh no, Oh no, oh no!" He thought to himself, hastily holstering the only two ranged weapons he had and raising a shield, the distinct sound of a beam saber activating was heard as the blue beam sprung from the handle, as the enemy got close he swung! Falling for the front and watching the Archangel get attacked for it "DAMMIT!" he said to himself, he gave chase, spotting his ally closing in.. he flicked the switch to his Saturn engine on and pulled ahead of the Enemy MS

“This ship doesn't have Phase Shift, but physical ammo is the only chance we have! Carter, we don’t have much time, let’s mess this one up before the other one comes in!” he heard over comms 

"I hear you!" He responded "Switching weapons! Watch for the buckshot!" Carter announced as he grabbed the Anti armor shotgun he was packing, he turned around, and started blasting at the enemy to try and slow it down!

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Hikaru shifted into Mobile Armor mode as well, with the addition of the GP04's lower body and main gun in its arms underneath.  He accelerated, pushing the machine as best he could.  Of course, this was only done long enough to get up to a reasonable pace before aiming himself at Beta Team's vessel and letting go of the lower body and arms.  This only took a few extra seconds, but it might have some sort of consequence for secondary objectives.  "Hikaru to Team, secondary threat resolved.  I and the leader of Alpha Team are enroute!  Bottom half and arms of enemy RX-78GP04G "Gundam Gerbera" drifting toward our vessel!  Grab it on retreat! I need to provide cover!"

The transformed machine was now more stable, even though it was carrying the Gerbera's main weapon in both hands underneath to deny it to the enemy.  He was going to take aim at the Archangel with his Long Beam Rifle, hopefully being able to assist before Risu got overwhelmed, but seeing Shin in that state changed his mind.  Taking aim at the larger target, the Zeong, Hikaru opened fire with the Long Beam Rifle in hopes of disabling or destroying the machine.  "Risu!  Withdraw, you've got inbound!  I'm coming Shin, hang on!"  Risu might have to deal with the consequences of surrendering her range advantage, but it couldn't be helped.  Shin didn't seem likely to last as long.

Edited by MM007
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Higanbana moved exceptionally quickly, though its mostly-stock loadout was not enough to elude the Comet Dagger’s custom Saturn Engine. Risu watched as the enemy machine surged forward, deftly coming to a stop just a few short meters in front of her, its Anti-Armor Shotgun aimed directly at her own machine’s chest: she was staring down the smoothbore barrel of the weapon for just an instant before it fired. The diminutive white mobile suit shot upwards just in time, though not fast enough to completely evade the withering fire: the shot had managed to blast the leg of the Higanbana clear off, causing a large, spherical explosion directly in front of the opposing machine.

 

Risu clutched the controls tight, her normal suit creaking against the virtual plastic grips as she pulled back as ordered, sending her mobile suit rushing backwards away from the Archangel and towards friendly lines, towards the Argama. “W-what next..?” she called out, obviously shaken by the experience. It seemed that her earlier display of skill was nothing more than a fluke, or perhaps something else.

 

However, with its main weapon still operational, Higanbana begun to fire, taking shots in the Zeong’s direction. At this distance, the shots would go wide, but perhaps it was enough to get the Mobile Armor off of Shin and allow him to withdraw as well. “S-Shin-san! Go back!” Risu cried, a video window of the girl appearing in the corner of the Astral AGE pilot’s monitor. “Hikaru-san said we’re retreating!”

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Alarms sprung up as the Archangel reached orbit, and immediately went “vertical”, at least, that was what seemed to be going on for all of the pilots, but in reality the ship was aligning itself with the Earth, then tilting a little upwards from there to prepare for re-entry. The cannons retracted into the hull, and a visor protected the ship’s bridge from the heat that would build up soon. It was now or never for everyone near the ship, and the Archangel's two catapults opened their hatches for anybody who wanted access to the hangar bay.

“KIRAAAAAAAA! NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!” - Kuzzey Buzzkirk's loud shriek, played on all bands and frequencies, brought Mu to his senses, after Rau made his retreat and insulted him by taking his beam saber away. Quickly, he turned around to find the Strike Gundam trailing smoke and fire from its cockpit. “No, no, no! I told him he’d be alright… but i just got so caught up in the battle!” Unit 01 accelerated towards the Strike and quickly gripped it, before flying away with it for a moment. Then, he turned both machines around and sped towards his ship. "Archangel! This is Lieutenant La Flaga! We don't have much time, take fire control and paramedics to the hangar bay NOW! Deploy the net!" Shortly, Mu's Mark II entered the corridor at such a speed, his machine broke through the first MS-sized net. However, said net slowed it down enough for the one after it to bring him to a complete halt. As the Gundam entered the hangar bay and people in spacesuits approached it with pressurized foam guns, the door started closing. Just one transmission from the medical team escaped before it shut, sealing the left catapult for good. "Patient recovered in critical condition! This is bad, we have to take him to the E.R now before-"

Nothing else was heard on that end, but Emma had bigger problems than a wounded supersoldier that would probably be back on the fray by noon: she quickly aborted her attack, as soon as she saw the enemy machine ready their gilded blade. She was fearful, fittingly for her first true battle in a long time. It's… it's not fair! How can something be so strong, yet so fast? As she changed course, new orders were delivered to her cockpit, through a video window that opened next to some meters. On it, a group of soldiers could be seen taking Kira's devastated friends away from the bridge. The person speaking to her was Ensign Badgiruel herself, who had to take Buzzkirk’s position and relay her orders directly to the Mobile Suits. "Unit 02, RTB immediately. Enter through Right Catapult." As she sped past the white machine and made a U-turn to enter the hangar bay, she was given further orders by her superiors. They weren’t pretty, but orders were orders. As her Mark II stood inside the bay and reloaded its beam rifle, she remembered that sensation the enemy Gundam gave her. I had forgotten… how terrifying is to approach Death.

---

Kyle and Charo saw Shin leave their fight, for a chance to attack the Archangel. Charo amusingly voiced his opinion on the matter.

- “Coward! Coward!”

- “Looks like he’s heading for the Archangel. I better pursue…” Kyle did not want to let Shin go, not without getting him back for Green Noah, but Charo was still flipping out for some reason.

- “Look! Look!”

- “Oh, Haro… er CHARO. Looking out and surveying the battlefield is just one important part of being a successful sniper. Firing at long range targets, pointing out where people may be, these are things I HAVE to do. If I didn’t look around and pay attention, then I wouldn’t advance at all while playing this game, now would I?”

- “No! Look!”

- “Oh, I’m sorry Charo! You just wanted to show me AHHHHHH!” By the time Kyle looked at the screen Charo wanted him to pay attention to, it was too late. The ever-precise Beta Gundam and the new enemy sniper, Higanbana, had fired two powerful shots at his machine. As they landed and the Zeong turned into a fireball, sending both Psycommu hands flying away without aim or purpose, Beta Team briefly heard interference from Kyle’s end, before he was annihilated.

Or was he? From the huge explosion caused by the destroyed Mobile Armor, came the Titans GP03, engulfed in flames and carrying the head of the Zeong. It appeared, Kyle was able to eject it, outrunning the reaper in true Char Aznable fashion, while Beta Four grabbed it and sped towards the Archangel. “Four? I… i had this under control, but… thank you.” Kyle was surprised by the NPD’s gesture, thinking they had done it out of kindness, but the electronic lifeform promptly shot that down: “We’re trailing behind and my machine’s faster. Hold on tight.” The dark Gundam put pedal to the metal, and soon reached the ship.

---

As the little red Gundam was firing at the Zeong, Aida’s blue GM found an opening, and aimed his Shot Lancer at it, while its pilot was distracted. “Don’t forget who you’re fighting with!” Alarms sounded in the little rabbit girl’s cockpit, and a closeup of the GM appeared within a little window, designed to catch the pilot’s attention. A split second passed, where Aida had Risu down his sights, and where Risu knew the next attack would hit, and there was nothing to do about it. But before he could fire, the IFFs and weapons systems turned off. The Archangel had begun re-entry, effectively making the score even. Beta Team’s machines heard the voice of a woman announce ‘MISSION ACCOMPLISHED’, while Alpha Team was told by the same voice ‘MISSION OVER’. Aida smirked, certain of what would’ve happened, had the mission not ended. “I would've gotcha...” As he lowered his weapon and made a run for the Archangel, he savored his team’s victory. But there was a bittersweet taste to it. Kira Yamato, judging from what he had heard, could be in any kind of shape by now, from a coma, to a flatline. And numbers were in their favor all the time, yet the same could not be said of their skill, or the capabilities of their machines. They had barely scraped through…

---

Alpha’s story will continue in Alpha Override!

Beta’s story will continue in Challengers of Diamond!

Check out the latest side stories!

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      A smile curled on Spider’s lips as if that notion satisfied him. He nodded then walked on towards the back of the room.
      “you’re certain no one can trace me here?”
      Spider twisted around to walk backwards and raised his hands up to shrug. “Relax, would you? This is my personal nest. I’ve installed some of the best security credits can buy; not to mention some top-notch hacks.” He turned around and waved a hand dismissively. “You’ll be fine just wait!”
      Gabriel frowned as he sat on the comfortable couch and waited a moment to be alone before he brought up his menu. The fist thing he did was active the program he had used all those months ago which prevented anyone from logging out of the area. Then he sent a message to his teammates along with a pass to get them into the nest.
       
      I got him where we want him. Show up ready for a fight. Be advised my handle here is Hunter, so watch the friendly fire. Be ready for anything.
       
      Gabriel closed the menu after he sent the message and leaned back on the sofa putting his hands behind his head. He’d strike when the moment was right, but first he wanted to see this scumbag squirm as everything he worked so hard for crumbled.
    • By JohnSeever
      Biography
      Full name Zhane Tan
      Faction: n/a
      Rank: n/a
      Age: 15
      Sex: Male
      Height: 6 foot
      Weight: 155 pounds
      Eyes: Redish-Brown
      Hair: Silver
      Skin: Caucasian
      Handiness: Right-handed
      Ingame name: Lucky
      Personality
      Zhane is a calm and easy-going man. His attitude towards others makes him seem like a loner, but he is a people person and enjoys meeting new and interesting people. Quiet and thinks all the time as he makes notes on what he sees and experiences. He tries to avoid conflict as much as possible with the tendency to do the ‘right’ thing when he knows it will get him into more trouble. Lancer has a sense of honor to his friends and duty to those he works for and with. He stays loyal to his friends and makes sure that he stays true to his word, since he was raised to show dignity, honor and respect to all.
      Strengths and weaknesses
      Zhane is still new to the GBN, having taken part in a few battles. He is quick on the controls and is good as a close combat-based player. Not the best out there when it comes to teams but is amazing in singles. When he dives, he is super friendly and enjoys it. Seems to have a natural ability to piloting and figuring out the Gunpla's abilities quickly.
      Appearance

      History
      Born in the United States, Zhane grew up in the Midwest. His parents traveled due to their careers and so he was never in a single place for more than two to three years. Additionally, he has a few health issues, mainly bone cancer, and is not able to do much, and making friends is hard. Due to this, he spent time building Gunpla and creating his own worlds with them. Finally, after many years and many homes, Richard's family has finally settled down and has stopped moving and now, perhaps he can make friends.
      While not a very good pilot, he does have some natural abilities and is an excellent builder of Gunpla. Due to moving, he was not able to take part in GBN, and has never dived before, however, he might his chance and more and maybe he will find a team he can join or get some time in to better his skills. If nothing else, he will just enjoy what time he can within the GBN.
      Possessions
      Gunpla #1: XXAGET-01X105-2DB Gundam Deathstrike Bullet
      Gunpla #2: XXXGAT-X10201H Gundam Duel Heavy
      Gunpla #3: RXGN-001OP Prime Gundam
      Role plays
      Mairéad Grace Sandilands: For the Homeland
    • By Zhane Tan
      Looking at the Gundam Battle Nexus setup, Zhane blinked and had no idea what to do, "So, I just sit in this and put my gunpla here?" he asks the person at the GBN store as he looked back at them. "That's right," said the worker.  Looking at the machine, he thought for a moment and sat down. "Ok, now what do I do?" he asked as she looked again after placing his Gunpla on the machine. The employee blinked and just looked, shocked more than anything "... you've never done this?" he asked. "My first time," was Zhane's response.  The employee sighed, "You put on the headset, and create an account," and as the employee spoke, Zhane did that. "That's it?" he asked. "Yes," said the employee.
      Zhane is odd in this matter, having not been out in public much, except for his trips to the hospital. He has bone cancer and has been going through a lot to try to stop it and fight it of and the Doctors are sure that they are to the point of getting all of it, so he has little experience with anything like this, and thinking, Zhane types in a name, Lucky. The employee looks, "Interesting name," he states. "Yea," Zhane says. "I have been lucky my entire life, and still am so far," he replies as he listens and places his Gunpla on the machine to scan it in. "Interesting suit design," the employee said. "Thank you," he states simply as he closes his eyes and takes a few breaths, kind of tired but opens them. "Here it goes," he comments to himself as he logs in for the first time....

      Traveling through the VR of the login, he looks around and smiles, "Totally cool," he states as he wonders, will keep his same appearance or will have a different appearance. 

      He looks at the screen and thinks as he gets his answer. smiling to himself, he picks an design that he thinks will be cool. "Can I change my appearance later?" he wonders to himself as he picks his normal appearance with simple clothing. Afterwards, he steps through the door and into the GBN.
      Arriving in the GBN, he looks around as he sees all the different avatars, "Wow, there's someone dressed as Zechs and another as Char.... and... is that a dogboy?" he says to himself as he walks around the floor and looks completely lost.
       
    • By Hunter
      Gabriel sat in the seat of his new mobile suit. He reflexively tensed his left arm, as if doing so would ward off the unpleasant memories of a similar mobile suit he had used. “Time to see if this will do… Vidar…” he mused. Gabriel perched the dark mobile suit on top of a building overlooking a park inside of a colony. The streets were vacant, he almost swore he spotted a tumbleweed drifting through a road. “These programmers have a sick sense of humor…” he muttered disgustedly.
      He didn’t have to wait long, his radar beeped, telling him his opponent had arrived. “Creed told me you were good!” He said more to himself, a thin smile tracing the EL Diver’s lips. “Let’s see if the old man was right?” Vidar pulled out its’ rifle and took aim at the approaching machine, he took careful aim and squeezed the trigger, sending a volley to his opponent. 

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