Well, like I said, this episode does feature Kon as writer, but only a part-time one because he's a lazy sod.
Klak took over from him, so it features him too!Episode 8: Inheritance of the Gods
Kakamu folded his arms and leaned against the wall to the left of the group with a satisfied smile. The others were, of course, peering at the hologram of the map, or at least part of it. While he would take any opportunity to show off his technological prowess, the Toa turned Makuta began to wonder if showing them the pictures of the map was a good idea after all. Sure, he'd come this far - even had to put up with Mephistroth's company for the sake of his boss - but he was fairly certain that the unquestionably powerful sword would be better not left in the hands of either unquestionably powerful being.
He stood back upright and walked over to the table, looking down at the hologram. While he traced his finger over parts of the map, pretending to analysing it, he actually observed Malygos's behaviour with silent concern. Subtle little hints in the mage's body language gave it away. Greed would overcome him if it hadn't already, and Malygos would attempt to take the Master Sword from Blackout when the time was right. Kakamu's Toa instincts kept nagging him that Blackout claiming the sword and using it to its full power would put them all on the path to destruction, but he shook the thought off instantly. He was a Makuta, and his Toa days were long behind him.
"So, any ideas?" Kakamu called across the table. Malygos faced him with a smug smile.
"Yes, come. You see these horizontal lines at the corners of each segment? Together they form a perfect path across the map as a whole." The mage showed this by drawing his finger across two corners of the completed map. "However... there's two endings. The location of the Master Sword is not signified by an arrow, but rather two parallel lines. It could be at either end."
Now it was Blackout's turn. The Elite Makuta broke his silence by tapping his huge metal finger on one of the ends. Although he made no air punches, Kakamu could tell he was doing one inside his head, behind the cold exterior. "It's this one. PtR4-8. Never heard of it, though I'm not surprised. It's the moon of Tamriel - a desert planet in the middle of nowhere."
Malygos raised an eyebrow. "What makes you so sure?" He retorted. "You are as clueless as the rest of us in this matter."
Blackout gave a croaky laugh - or as close to a laugh as a Makuta could - and pointed to the other end of the map where the second point was. It lined up with Poseidon, a planet that they were all too familiar with now. "I think if an ancient Rider sword was being kept in a temple on Poseidon, the temple supposed to house it would have been raided millennia ago, and several hundred con-artists would be in bloody tatters and all over the intergalactic news by now. It's on this moon." Blackout rumbled as his finger moved back to the first point. Malygos wrinkled his nose and looked around.
"The ship flight will take several months to get there, and frankly, I'm tired of waiting already. I will transport all who are willing to this moon myself." The mage asserted.
“Very well,” Blackout said as he nodded at Malygos.
The mage grinned smugly, and flicked his wrists. The next thing Kakamu knew, he was at the desired location, with Mephisroth, Blackout, and Malygos.
They were surrounded by a vast expanse of grayish black rock. The moon was dead in every sense of the word.
Kakamu glanced at Blackout.
“Where do we begin?” he said.
Blackout tapped his chin, and responded.
“A Great Being would have hidden the artefact underground, several miles away. But these are Riders. Rumors are they often like to play with expectations.”
“Liked,” Malygos added in an attempt to correct the Makuta. “They’re all dead.”
“That we know of,” Blackout retorted. “Anyway, it might be in a crater. No one expects that.”
“What?” Mephistroth said, surprised, “What a foolish hiding spot!”
“Precisely,” the Elite Makuta said as he made his way towards a nearby crater.
“The amount of craters on this wretched moon is multitudinous. Searching them will take days,” Mephistroth groaned.
“I doubt any of us want the other to obtain the sword alone,” Kakamu uttered. He wanted Blackout to figure out the obvious: Malygos was going to betray him.
Everyone else nodded and walked towards the crater. Twenty minutes later, they stood at its overturned flap.
“Do you see anything, Blackout?” Malygos said, inquisitively.
“Nothing,“ mumbled the Makuta.
“Perhaps you’re not looking close enough.”
Who said that? They were all bewildered. They turned and saw a man wearing some sort of silver space suit.
Kakamu stared at the newcomer, practically scanning his appearance. He looked human, but something was…off.
“A human?” he whispered to Mephistroth as the newcomer slowly made his way to them.
“No. Humans’ eyes don’t glow, no matter how blue they are. He must be from another system, another galaxy perhaps. His traits definitely match a few species I could name, but he’s no human,” said the demon, silently.
Blackout sneered at the newcomer, and raised his arm up in the air. A ball of pure shadow energy formed around his hand. Malygos, who grabbed his shoulder, stopped him, however.
“No, my friend,” the mage said, “He might have more information for us.”
“Who are you?” Blackout yelled.
“That is of no concern to you,” the newcomer said. His voice carried an arrogant tone. “What matters is that we both have a common pursuit.”
“You’re searching for the Master Sword as well, then?” said Kakamu.
He was met with glares from his comrades, and a smile from the newcomer.
“Yes, but not to obtain it. I only wish to see it,” responded the unidentified man.
“Bloody likely,” spat Blackout, “Be gone, grave robber, before we make this crater your tomb.”
The newcomer was only slightly intimidated for a brief moment. He then burst into laughter.
“Killing your only way to the Sword, hmm? You are as dumb as you look,” the man said, arrogantly.
“Insolent fool, you will pay for your disgraceful actions by the hand of Malygos!”
The mage ran up to the unidentified man. He was planning on ripping his helmet off and exposing him to the vacuum of space. Why waste magic on nothing but a grave robber, especially to defend the honor of someone he so vehemently abhorred?
Suddenly, the world spun, and Malygos found himself on the floor with an elbow to his throat.
Kakamu’s eyes widened, and he quickly began to think of battle options. He was not expecting conflict. Meanwhile, Mephistroth growled, and commence the preparation of a demonic attack. Malygos muttered to begin an incantation that would fling the assailant to the nearest fiery star with little effort.
Blackout, however, simply chuckled, and clapped his hands.
“Bravo, bravo. You have impressed me. I suppose I’ll bite,” he said, continuing to laugh, “Where do you suppose the temple is?”
What? Blackout suddenly trusts him thought Kakamu, who was still confused by the turn of events.
“You’re close,” the man responded as he released Malygos from his restraint. “It’s not in the crater, but next to it. It was buried several years after the crater hit.”
“How are you so sure, you cretin?” spat out Malygos.
“Because my ancestors hid the sword,” the man said.
“Of course! How could I have missed it?” Mephistroth said, excitedly. “You are a Rider.”
“A living Rider? Impossible,” whispered the mage.
The man bowed, and replied to Mephistroth in a more somber tone.
“In the flesh. We are rare, but we are out there. Most of us are Vrai slaves, others…. part of something else.” His tone changed quickly back to that of before. “Now, let us get down to business.”
The Rider ran to an empty patch of dirt a few metres away from the crater, and tapped his foot. A metallic sound echoed throughout the moon.
“Here we are,” he said, grinning.
The ground suddenly opened, and he fell down a hole. The others simply stared at the hole.
“Is he…?” asked Kakamu.
“No, we’re supposed to follow him,” Malygos said.
The mage leaped into the hole, and the demon followed soon after. Blackout rolled his eyes, and dived into the pit.
“Seems legit,” Kakamu muttered to himself as he made a cannonball jump into the unknown.
After what seemed like hours, all those who dropped down the hole found themselves floating through a strange mist.
“Incredible technology,” said an astonished Malygos.
They softly landed on a stone floor. Before them stood a hallway with cracked walls made with the rocks commonly found on the moon’s surface. On each wall there was a different tapestry with strange figures, illustrating incredible tales. At the bottom of the tapestries were words in a language so ancient that, of the temple’s non-Rider visitors, only Malygos could make out a few words.
As the group followed its Rider guide, Kakamu stared at the tapestry to his left. The anonymous man noticed the former Toa’s interest.
“The tapestry to our left is some sort of prophecy about a war for the Master Sword. It is in an old form of my language, so there’s only so much I can comprehend. The one to your right is the origin of the sword. All legends. I was never much of a believer,” he explained.
Malygos smiled. He himself was no stranger to ancient legends. In fact, he lived through some of them.
Kakamu nodded to the Rider as he followed the group. To his surprise, one of the figures in the tale to the left looked just like Zev Raregroove. Then, there were two figures that looked like him! One was black with red eyes, and it was fighting another one that was white with blue eyes. Kakamu swore he was hallucinating.
The group reached a doorway, with an inscription and image above its header. Kakamu’s curiosity peaked, and he stared at the illustration. It showed a blue-eyed golden armoured warrior with a raised sword on a black horse. The warrior’s sword nearly glowed, even in the darkness, and it seemed to be surrounded by an army filled with creatures of many species, some of which the former Toa had never seen in his life. The horse itself was detailed, with one side of its face showing anger, and the other showing fear. Once again, the Rider elucidated.
“The inscription says: ‘Despite this, there comes deliverance.’ I have no idea what it means,” he said, as he shrugged.
Kakamu took a look at the Rider, and then at the man in the picture, noticing they both had the same eye color and facial features. He shook his head.
The Rider then turned to the rest of the group, eyes widening.
“Beyond this door is the chamber where you will find the sword. The monks guarding the sword are wise, but strong. They nearly killed me the first time I came here,” he warned, “Hence why I browse the temple secretly.”
He placed his hand on the door, and it slid open. The sound of two massive rocks scraping one another filled the hallway.
“Good,” Blackout said as he smiled, “Anything else, mister…er…?”
“Nothing else,” said the Rider, lying like a criminal on trial, “and like I said, my name is none of your concern.”
“Thank you for your help,” Blackout said, as he tapped his finger on the man’s head. He quickly collapsed and fell into a deep sleep.
“You only sedated him! What’s the matter, too scared to kill a Rider?” uttered Mephistroth.
“He’ll be asleep for quite some time, maybe he’ll run out of oxygen,” Blackout said, grinning sadistically. “If not, we’ll test the sword on him.”
“Brilliant,” he praised.
“Wait, how will we know when we see it?” inquired Kakamu.
Blackout frowned, and pulled out pieces of the map. With it, he made out some of the image of the Master Sword.
“Looks something like this, I suppose.”
The group nodded to each other, then made its way into the cavern-like crypt before them. It was mostly dark, with a domed roof extending to near infinity. Right in the middle there was an altar, and on it lay what our villains had spent days searching for, their object of desire, their gateway to power, the Master Sword.
On the altar’s left and right sides, there were two giant, slender candles. 3 monks wearing grey cowls surrounded each candle, and they were chanting in the Rider tongue. When they heard Blackout and the others come in, they stopped, and turned. One spoke in that same language, with a threatening tone, but another stopped him.
“No,” this monk said, in a language that everyone present could understand, “They may be the chosen ones. The prophecy may be fulfilled!”
Kakamu tapped his chin. So the tapestry had greater relevance than he thought.
“We shall test this,” replied yet another monk, “State your names.”
Malygos sauntered towards the monks, and with verbosity, stated his name. Mephistroth said his tersely while rolling his eyes. Kakamu said his with pride. Blackout introduced himself after a lengthy description of his titles.
The monks chattered to themselves.
“We have heard of a few of you. But some of you must be tested,” said a monk.
“The first test: the inquisition,” said another.
“Great, I didn’t expect that,” retorted Blackout sarcastically. “We do not have time, my friends. Give us the sword. The universe’s future depends on it.”
The monks all widened their eyes, and turned their backs to the newcomers. They started to chatter amongst themselves. When they turned back, they saw the group standing right in front of them.
“The test is finished. You failed,” Blackout said, grinning.
Malygos uttered an incantation that wrought fire from his hands, burning and killing one of the monks. Mephistroth disappeared, and reappeared behind another monk, his hand clawing at the priest’s heart.
The last set of monks took on Kakamu and Blackout, and a physical brawl resulted. Kakamu found himself hit in the jaw by what felt like a hammer made of hardened protodermis. It was actually one of the priest’s fists.
He lunged out of the way of a deadly kick, and quickly turned like a whirlwind, knocking the monk over. Kakamu then jumped into the air, and slammed his fist into the monk’s chest, killing him. Another monk lifted Kakamu into the air, and slammed him into Malygos. Both fell to the floor, grunting.
“They’re a lot stronger than we thought,” the former Toa said.
“Than you thought,” Malygos replied, tersely.
Mephistroth charged at the monk that threw Kakamu, and both of them were caught in a flurry of attacks. When the dust settled, the demon appeared to be the victor, but not without a scar on his leg.
Blackout was annoyed by the battle. He knew the monks were tough, but they were nowhere near the enemies they usually faced. He adjusted the density in his fingers, and punched the last two monks. They were knocked into the air, and a crashing sound was heard on the other side of the crypt.
“We’re done playing, my friends,” he said, still smiling, “Now let’s pick up our toys.”
Blackout reached forward, and grabbed the sword. He felt its power coursing throughout his body. Meanwhile, Kakamu was in awe. He looked at Malygos, noting that even a blind man could see the jealousy on that wizard’s face.
The group left the crypt, returning to the hallway that the mysterious Rider had led them through. But the Rider was missing.
“He’s awake?!” said Kakamu, panicking.
“Who cares? Let’s go,” Blackout snapped.
Suddenly, they heard a boom, and the tunnel shook. A slab of rock fell from the ceiling.
“That son of a…” Mephisroth whispered.
The group ran up to the hole from which they came. Malygos saw that it was now covered, and snapped his fingers. Everyone was instantly teleported back to the ship.
“It is done. Who can stop me now?” Blackout said, as he swung the sword in the air, and laughed maniacally. “The legacy of two empires in the palm of my hand, a fitting tool for a conqueror.”
Mephistroth and Malygos both grabbed the edge of a table with one hand, and gritted their teeth. But they resisted the pangs of jealousy ripping at their souls, for it was not the hour of betrayal just yet.
Kakamu looked on, and shook his head. Sure, they obtained the Master Sword, but at what cost? Any semblance of the Toa Code he once abided by was reduced to ashes, and the tension between Blackout and Malygos had exacerbated. And something about that grave robber and the artwork in the crypt made him shiver.
He folded his arms, and leaned against the wall with a contemplative frown.
And here we go. Next one's a two-parter.