"And that makes the last of them," said Sonic to himself as the final tower of the defensive perimeter fell victim to a spindash, landing on top of the final hover-bike that had been chasing him. He rushed back into the forest, spotting Comet hiding in the trees near the boarder of the forest and open plains. "Hey! You gonna be okay staying up there till we come back?" he hollered up at the small chao. He noticed Comet had a rather worried look on her face when she looked down at him.
"Yes, I'll be fine. But I fear something has happened to my mistress," she said as she quickly flew down to hover next to him, her worried voice confirming to Sonic the look she had on her face.
"How come?" he asked. Comet shook her head.
"I'm not sure, but it feels as though she's being tormented in some way," she answered. The only response she got from Sonic was a blast of wind that nearly threw her to the ground as Sonic sped towards the base at over six hundred miles per hour, not even bothering to slow down as he ran into the much narrower sections of the base's layout. He quickly found the hole in the command center that had been blown open by Angel's kamikaze run with the hover-bike. Leaping into the room, speeding down the hallways as he followed the trail of destruction Angel had left in her wake to the first turbolift. Not even bothering to wait on the lift, he spindashed through the metal doors, bouncing off the inner walls of the lift shaft like a pinball till he crashed through the second floor doors. He repeated the same pattern to reach the third floor. As he barreled through the third floor doors of the lift shaft connecting the second and third floors, however, he came to a grinding halt. On the opposite side of the giant room stood Angel, who stared at Sonic with a grim look on her face. Even though the two of them were just colored specks to each other, they both recognized the other instantly.
"Oh thank the heavens you're okay!" shouted Sonic as he quickly ran over towards her, coming to a stop a few yards away when he noticed the look on her face. "What's wrong?" he asked. Angel said nothing as she withdrew her sword from its sheath, slowly taking an offensive stance as she gripped her sword tightly. "What is it?" he asked, his face reflecting confusion.
"Forgive me," she whispered as she closed her eyes tight. Sonic was about to ask her what she was doing when Angel lunged forward, her sword sweeping straight at Sonic's head. He quickly dropped to the ground, then rolled to the left as Angel brought the weapon crashing down on the spot he had just been occupying on the floor. Sonic flipped back onto his feet just in time to manage a quick back flip as he jumped backwards over the echidna's next swing, landing a few yards away.
"What on Mobius are you doing!?" cried Sonic as his confused look had been replaced by one of surprise. Angel didn't answer as she reset her stance. She then rushed him again, her sword flashing through the air as Sonic narrowly dodged each of her attacks. Now Sonic was certain she was trying to hurt him, possibly even kill him. But as to why she was acting this way, he had no clue. As one of Angel's swings overextended slightly, adding a fraction of a second onto the next attack, Sonic used the spare time to quickly dash out of her immediate attack range. As he ran to a safe distance from her, he turned around expecting her to be somewhat disorientated.
However, to his surprise, she had stayed with him as she ran at him, leaping into the air with her sword raised high above her head. Sonic cursed to himself as he remembered that Angel was skilled enough to follow his movements when they weren't right up in her face, jumping to the right with as much force as he could muster as he narrowly avoided Angel's strike, her sword clanged off the metal floor as she landed in a kneeling position. Landing only a few yards away from the closest wall from the force he'd used, Sonic watched as she slowly stood back up, brushing one of her white forelocks from her eyes.
"Angel...I don't know what in the world has gotten into you, but whatever it is, can't it wait till later?" asked Sonic, his eyes locked with hers, annoyance filling his voice as his face twisted into a scowl.
"No it can't," she said, her normal tough and confident voice having been reduced to nothing more than monotone. "It is nothing personal, Sonic. I'm just upholding my end of a promise. That's all." Suddenly the light clicked on in Sonic's head and his expression softened considerably.
"You mean..." he started.
"Yes..." said Angel in the same monotone voice as she reset her stance once again. "Believe me when I say that I have no personal desire to do this. But I can not go against my word."
"So you'd sacrifice all you've done to help me and my friends just to keep some stupid promise?" he asked her questioningly. Angel's emotionless demeanor immediately turned into one of complete rage at Sonic's last comment as she slammed her sword into the ground hard enough to embed the first two inches of the sharp blade in the solid steel floor before running straight at him.
"Stupid promise!?" she screamed as she rushed him. Sonic debated on dodging her, but at the same time he knew that if he continued to do so it wouldn't solve whatever was going on. He braced himself for her attack with as little indication as possible. "How dare you call my promise stupid!" By now she had reached Sonic and swung her right fist straight at his face. Sonic ducked the first punch, but was caught off guard as Angel's other fist flew into Sonic's gut, knocking the wind from him from the force of the blow and causing him to fall to his knees as he tried to draw in air. She then took a half step back and roundhouse kicked him in the side of the head, flipping him over onto his back. She then picked him up by his chest fur and slammed him as hard as she could against the solid steel wall, holding him in place with as much pressure as she could exert against him.
"You have no idea what a promise means to me or my people, do you?" she yelled at him, tears comprised of both sadness and anger gleaming in her eyes. "To the rest of this world, a promise is just another form of saying you might do something. A means to get people off your back for a short time," she hissed as she put her face right up in his, her eyes locking with his. "But to me and all of my people it means something far more important. A promise represents the honor of not only the person pledging it, but also the others of that person's family. To break a promise is to dishonor not just yourself, but your entire family. I could never allow that to happen. The honor of my family is all I have left. It is what gives me a reason to live..." she said as her voice softened and trailed off. She finally let go of Sonic, dropping him into a sitting position as he tried to collect himself as she turned her back to him and started to walk back to where her sword sat sticking out at an angle in the floor. As soon as he had a chance to regain his composure somewhat, he looked up towards her, regretting looking up so fast as a wave of pain shot through his head where she had kicked him.
"I had no idea," he said with as much sympathy as he could muster at that point. The fact that she had actually hurt him on purpose made it hard to garner any sympathy, but hearing her words had helped him to do so.
"How could you?" she asked as she came to a stop next to her sword, turning to look back at him as she withdrew her sword from its entombment and fully turned to face him. "Now that you know how important this is to me, I hope you understand that I won't hold anything back, despite the fact that we were friends."
"I'm still your friend, despite what you may think," he said. "I don't want to fight you, and I can tell you don't really want to fight me, but it's also obvious that you won't stop. I wish I could convince you to, but I know I can't talk you out of it. You've made that pretty clear." He breathed in deep, closing his eyes as he sighed, relaxing his body. "Do what you will," he said as he opened his eyes again. Angel's stance slackened when she heard this, thrown off guard by what he had said.
"What did you say?" she asked, genuinely confused by Sonic's statement and wondering if she had heard him correctly.
"I can't stand to see you like this. Torn between what you know is right and wrong. So I won't compound the problem by fighting back. That would only serve to hurt you more, and I refuse to do that to a friend," he answered. Angel completely dropped her stance, realizing he had meant what he had said. And as she stood there staring back at him, she couldn't help but picture her mother and father standing there next to him, staring back at her along with the cerulean hedgehog. But what she saw wasn't any of the emotions she had seen on their faces anytime she had thought about them since the night Metal Sonic had laid waste to her home. Usually they were happy from the memories she could recall from her childhood or hate-filled for the one that had killed them and nearly killed their daughter. But this time, they were ones of sadness. Sadness for seeing their little girl being torn apart at the seams. That's when she knew she couldn't do it. She couldn't follow through with the order to kill Sonic. But she also knew that she had to or else it would destroy her. She had not been lying when she had said her family's honor had been all that had kept her going for the last several years. To destroy it now would be to forfeit her own existence. There had to be a way to uphold her family's honor without killing Sonic, but how? The answer hit her like a ton of bricks as she realized what Leviathan's exact orders had been.
"You're right. I do know what is right and what is wrong," she said as she sheathed her sword and walked back over to Sonic. She gave him a smirk, which he returned.
"Glad to see you decided to make the right choice," said Sonic. I hope I made the right choice too, thought Angel to herself before her uppercut hit Sonic full force, knocking him a good five feet into the air to land a couple yards away. He was still breathing, but he lay sprawled out on the floor unmoving, having been knocked out cold from the blow. She then looked up at the ceiling far above, not really focusing on anything in particular.
"It is done master. I have completed your task," she called out.
"Nonsense. He is still alive. I ordered you to kill him, not knock him unconscious," bellowed Leviathan's voice over the room's intercom.
"No master. You said you wished to see him 'die at your feet'," she answered. "If I had killed him now, then I would be unable to complete the task you asked of me." Silence answered her, and she began to fear she had made an error in judgment.
"I must admit that you are right," Leviathan's voice finally answered back after nearly ten seconds of silence. "I would rather see him die in person than merely watch it over a monitor. Very well. Bring him up to the main control room so we can secure him. We'll then wait for him to awaken."
Leviathan had watched the rather short fight between the two friends with amusement, though he had to admit it wasn't so much of a fight as it had been an extremely heated discussion. Still, it had provided some entertainment. But when he had witnessed Angel only knock out Sonic, he had immediately thought of killing both of them then and there. But he had only thought of it for less than a second. After all, he was above such senseless killing over something as simple as disobedience. There had to be a reason as to why she had not followed through with the order, and whatever the reason was he wanted to know. If it was something that could be corrected, then all the better not to waste a good servant. Her answer had actually made him chuckle slightly to himself. It was the first time in years he had actually made a mistake, and he actually found that he was a little surprised at himself for being thrilled to have someone under his control that was cunning enough to outsmart him if even just one time.
"Clever little girl," he said to himself as he watched her gather the blue hedgehog up in her arms and begin walking towards the turbolift. "Finding a way to defy me and yet still uphold your little promise to me. I shall be more careful in the future to make sure that my orders don't have such a loophole for you to exploit again."
Sonic groaned as he slowly opened his eyes, the little light in the room making it hard to focus on anything in particular at first. It was only when his unfocused eyes took in the form of something pink did they shoot open, revealing Angel standing a few yards away from him, her face void of emotion as it had been when he had first found her in the room below. He then noticed that both his arms and legs were chained to the ceiling and floor respectively, leaving him hanging in midair, unable to use his speed at all to escape his bonds.
"Why?" was all he could think to ask as he eyed her angrily. Angel didn't answer as she stared back at him, making no outward sign that she had even heard his question. Suddenly, the room filled with bright light as the blast shielding on the viewing windows opened, revealing the late morning sun rising over the forest in the distance. Sonic could do little but close his eyes against the bright light, fighting to adjust enough to open them back up again. Then, just as suddenly as the light had filled the room, it vanished as the windows were once again covered by the blast shield. "So what the heck was the point of that?" he asked. As his eyes started to recover from the blast of light, the sight that now greeted him sent a chill down his spine to every single quill on his back.
"Greetings hedgehog. So nice to finally see you again after all these years," said Leviathan as he stood behind Angel, towering over the echidna by several feet as his red eyes shined brightly in the near dark room.
"You...But how are you alive? We have your remains back in Knothole," said Sonic in disbelief. Leviathan smirked, his clawed fingers clicking together on his hands as he stared at Sonic.
"You mobians are a very gullible breed it seems. I would have figured at the very least you would have figured it out Sonic," said Leviathan as he walked away from Sonic. He came to a stop, then turned his head back towards the blue hedgehog. "After all, you were the one who maintained a distrust of what you saw before you when you first arrived in this timeline."
"It really wasn't that hard to not trust what I saw," said Sonic with a smirk, letting his false sense of surprise melt away. "You're a bad actor." Leviathan chuckled slightly before turning fully around to face him again.
"Oh but I'm afraid you're pointing that accusing finger at the wrong person. I have not been to Knothole in over a decade," said Leviathan.
"Then what-?" started Sonic.
"Was the thing that was leading the Knothole Freedom Fighters?" finished Leviathan. "A rather ingenious clone I created shortly after I had gained their trust to monitor them, as well as eliminate myself as the person they were fighting against. A pity I had to destroy it when you showed up, but after you outwardly opposed the idea that my clone was on your side, I knew the only way for you to drop your suspicion of me would be to eliminate the source of your distrust."
"That and try and trick me with that fake video feed of Robotnik talking to me back in that cave with Rexxon," said Sonic. Leviathan's only response was a grin.
"So you saw through that as well, did you?" he asked.
"Wasn't hard. Robotnik always liked bragging to my face when he could, not through a camera. If he was running the show, I'd have seen him in person long before then anyways," said Sonic.
"You are indeed a unique individual to have seen through all of my smoke and mirrors while everyone else remained in the dark," said Leviathan.
"Before we continue, I have to know," asked Sonic, his demeanor changing from his usual cockiness to a much more serious tone as he braced himself to ask his next questions. "Why didn't you just finish us all off? Why kill only me and Sally? Why keep the village around if you knew where it was?" These questions had been burning in his mind for as long as he had heard the news, and even though he really wasn't in a position to be asking questions, he couldn't help but push for the truth. Leviathan only grinned sinisterly at Sonic's questions.
"My my. Impatient to learn things that would probably be better off not answered," he said sadistically. Sonic's angry glare was the only response Leviathan needed to understand he wasn't going to drop the subject. "Very well. The answers you are seeking are rather simple, I must say. I only killed you and the princess because you two were the only real threat that Robotnik ever faced. She was a masterful tactician and a technical wiz that was second only to Tails out of everyone in Knothole. And then there was you. The hero that couldn't be stopped. Who always managed to find a way to accomplish the impossible even when the odds were stacked so high against you that anyone else would have failed without question. Killing the two of you not only cost the Freedom Fighters their leader and best asset, but it also stripped them of their morale."
"As for why I let the village continue to exist, I did not wish to become bored. It is the same reason I have allowed the other Freedom Fighter villages scattered about the world to continue to exist. Ruling a world where you are unopposed offers no excitement, and the hit and run tactics of what remains of the population help to keep me amused as well as keep my AI matrix sharp by developing new tactics and machines to use against them," he answered. The answer hit Sonic hard enough to choke him up, unable to find words to express his shock and anger. Leviathan watched him struggle to process his response, savoring the moment as he watched the legendary unbreakable spirit of Sonic Hedgehog come crashing down around him.
"You...you...!" stuttered Sonic as he tried to issue a threat, a statement, even a simple put-down towards the mechanical reptile, but finding himself unable to utter anything but the single word.
"Monster? Animal? Beast?" asked Leviathan mockingly. "I've heard them all over the years on the few occasions I've personally killed someone." At this statement, Sonic's left eyebrow arched questioningly.
"Like who? From what I can tell, you've got more than enough toys lying around all over the planet to deal with anyone you want," said Sonic. Leviathan's attitude turned sour as he let out a low growl, turning his head away from Sonic slightly.
"Aside from you and the princess, I've had a reason to kill only five others in person, but the fifth person, that miserable piece of trash, managed to get away from me before I could follow through with my actions. I still have no idea where he is even today," hissed Leviathan, his tail slamming hard into the floor at the end of his answer, startling Angel from the sudden outburst from the mecha bot. But Sonic only burst into laughter, causing Leviathan to snarl angrily at him. "What is so funny?" he bellowed, putting his face, which was more than twice the size of Sonic's head, into the blue hedgehog's face, his eyes glowing so bright they nearly blinded Sonic.
"You're not perfect after all, are ya? You let someone get away, and it wasn't even me. That's gotta put a major hurt on the ol' pride doesn't it, chopper face?" said Sonic mockingly, now having regained a little of his usual cockiness after seeing Leviathan's tantrum. Leviathan let loose a feral cry that caused Sonic's ears to ring as he raised his right forearm back to deliver the killing blow. But he stopped himself midway through the lunge, a toothy grin creeping across his face.
"Very good hedgehog," he said coolly as he regained his composure. "Even though you know you are going to die, you nearly caused me to kill you in a way that ensured you would've gotten in the final mental blow and thus you would've won as far as the battle on the plane of emotions and thoughts is concerned. Very clever indeed. Sometimes I wish I hadn't killed you so early on. You've proven to be quite entertaining these last few days." Sonic merely returned the grin.
"I try," was all he said though.
"Hence the word 'try'. Yet in the end it was a futile effort. You should've known that from the beginning by the way this world's Freedom Fighters were barely hanging on," said Leviathan.
"I don't think it was a futile effort Levi. All your main bases on Mobius are pretty much gone and Little Planet's pretty close to the same fate. I doubt that you could stop all the Freedom Fighters if they joined together for one last assault," said Sonic confidently. Leviathan chuckled softly which quickly grew into a full laugh.
"So you managed to take out some of my bases as well as the other mecha bots. To be honest, I had been debating on dismantling Metal Sonic at the very least for a while now. As I'm sure you are aware of, he had been growing unstable as of late to say the least," said Leviathan. "The others were just a convenience on your part."
"You still haven't told me why that was such a good thing for you," said Sonic, getting annoyed that Leviathan was just beating around the bush.
"It really isn't to be truthful. All you've managed to do is corner me and force a move I was saving for when I finally grew bored with what remains of the population. Without the mecha bots to guard their respective stations, the Freedom Fighter groups have a much higher chance to successfully take and hold my bases on Mobius. If I allowed that to happen, then there is a possibility that your predictions on them being able to successfully assault my own base here and defeat me would come to pass," explained Leviathan.
"Meaning?" asked Sonic.
"Meaning, I have to destroy the population now instead of waiting for a rainy day," answered Leviathan. Sonic's gaping mouth and stunned silence gave Leviathan all the information he needed to know Sonic was once again at a loss for words. Yet, he could detect a hint of disbelief behind his eyes. A small part of the hedgehog still believed even now that Leviathan was unable to carry out such a threat. "Oh I assure you it is quite possible. Years ago I integrated my AI matrix into synaptic receptors that each and every one of my creations has implanted in their neural interfaces, allowing me to control them all with a single thought ranging from massive battlefield commands to having a single velocibot move one of its fingers a centimeter. Even now as we speak, my forces on Mobius are moving in for the kill."
"I hate trying to do these kinds of things when Tails isn't around," mumbled a middle-aged badger as he held up what remained of Leviathan's collar towards the single light bulb in Tails' workshop. He had been messing around with the collar since the others had left for Little Planet, hoping to extract some kind of information on what had happened when the first strike team had gone. So far, the charred piece of metal had held fast to its secrets. The badger sighed as he lowered it back down onto the table, picking up a screwdriver and fiddling with a few of the components. This was the last trick he knew, and if it gave no results, he was calling it quits. As he made the last adjustment to the circuitry, he placed the collar on the table, waiting to see if anything happened. After nearly a full minute, the badger sighed before putting the screwdriver on the workbench. "Well, was worth a try," he muttered before picking up the collar and chucking it into the trash bin near the workbench.
"Sam! Are you in here?" yelled a high-pitched male voice. The badger turned towards the door to the workshop and put a hand up to his mouth.
"In here Ken!" he hollered back. A younger badger appeared in the doorway, breathing quite heavily.
"Thank Mobius I found you! Velocibots! Velocibots have been spotted at the edge of the forest and they're headed our way!" cried Ken. Sam quickly got to his feet and followed the younger badger from the workshop at a flat out run.
"How many?" asked Sam.
"You don't want to know..." answered Ken as they reached the edge of Knothole. Ken grabbed the alarm bell and began to ring it as hard and fast as possible as Sam ran into Lily's hut, grabbing the two way radio from its place above the fireplace and flipping it to the channel that the lookout posts used.
"Knothole to Lookout One. Do you copy?" said Sam into the radio. Static came back over the radio for several heartbeats when a gravely male voice answered from the other end.
"Lookout One here. We're kind of busy Knothole. Come back," hissed the radio. Sam swallowed hard. The transmission from Lookout One had been somewhat garbled, but that was always the case. What caught his attention was the massive amount of background noise that he had heard over the radio. Laser fire of all kinds were audible, as was the cries of several velocibots.
"Lookout One. Do we have incoming? Over," asked Sam. Several more seconds ticked by before the next reply.
"Affirmative. Looks like all of Robotropolis is on the move into the Great Forest. Too many to get an accurate count. We'll try to hold them off, but I don't know how long we can. Rally everyone you can at Knothole and be ready for..." answered Lookout One before static answered back over the radio.
"Lookout One, come back! James, come back! Darn it!" shouted Sam as he slammed the radio to the floor, running from the hut to try and muster together some kind of defense for the village.
"Well, I believe we have covered all the bases so to speak, have we not?" asked Leviathan as he looked over Sonic as he hung by his chained arms. "And yet...I feel as though I forgot something..." He then reached a clawed hand towards the hedgehog's waist, grasping onto the invisible belt that held the miniature Super Emeralds and giving it a hard tug as the belt snapped off. Sonic said nothing as the belt became visible, Leviathan taking in the sight of the emeralds set in the belt. "Such power. I shall put these to a special use," he whispered before walking over to his command chair and placing the belt on the seat. He then turned back towards Sonic. "Now what to do with you?" Sonic huffed at the question, looking at Leviathan with as much defiance as he could muster at this point.
"One would think you'd have already figured that part out by now tin grin," spat Sonic.
"Feisty to the end, aren't you? Well, one would have thought that I would have your death all figured out, but recent events have given me a broader range of options," said Leviathan as he glanced down at Angel. Up until now, the pink furred echidna had remained silent and motionless, staring of into space to avoid becoming part of the scene that had been unfolding before her. But she knew she could no longer maintain her neutral standings in the matter the moment she felt the scaly synthetic skin and cold metallic claws of Leviathan's hand grip her shoulder. "Now then, my dear girl. The time to prove your loyalty to me has come." He gripped the top of her head with his other hand, turning her gaze towards Sonic. "I order you to fulfill the promise you made. Kill Sonic the Hedgehog right here and now, without hesitation." Angel glanced back at Leviathan for a brief second before looking forward towards Sonic again, unsheathing her sword.
"Yes master. I shall do exactly what you have ordered me to do," she said as she slowly walked towards Sonic, Leviathan following her with his hand still on her shoulder.
"Angel, you don't have to do this!" shouted Sonic as sweat began to collect on his brow. Despite the fact that he knew Angel didn't want to hurt him, he could tell by the look in her eye that her mind was made up, and no amount of talking could change that.
"I made a promise. My master has ordered that I keep it, and so I shall," she said softly as she raised her sword back to deliver the final blow. She then swung the weapon with all her might, but the angle of her attack completely missed Sonic. Instead, the sword went above Sonic's head, slicing through the chains that held him suspended above the floor. But Angel didn't stop there as she swung her body around, bring the sword crashing down on the hand that Leviathan had been holding onto her with, neatly cutting it off as the robotic raptor released a feral cry of pain so loud that the room actually vibrated from the sound waves. "Jump!" shouted Angel as she dropped to the floor, still continuing the initial swing of her sword. Sonic didn't ask questions as he jumped into the air, the sword slashing through the chains that held him to floor.
"How dare you!" shouted Leviathan as he grabbed Angel by three of her dreadlocks with his remaining hand, instantly stopping her momentum as he held her up above his head, preparing to take a bite out of her as she hung painfully by her hair. Angel tried to bring her sword to bear, but was unable to get a decent angle on Leviathan to attack him. But before he could even open his jaws wide enough to even try to get them around her body, Leviathan was slammed in the chest hard by a ball of whirling spines as Sonic spindashed Leviathan as hard as he could with such limited space to build up momentum for the attack. But it was still enough to throw the mecha bot off balance, forcing him to drop Angel who fell as gracefully to the floor as she could.
However, Leviathan wasn't able to regain his center of balance as easily as Angel as he stumbled backwards several feet before finally managing to get himself back under control just a couple feet away from the giant windows overlooking the base. As he looked back up, the only thing that greeted his eyes was a ball of blue as Sonic collided with his face, smashing his left eye and knocking him head over heels as he went crashing through not just the windows, but also the blast shield plating on the outside of the glass. Sonic uncurled and landed next to the command chair, both him and Angel staring out the window as the morning sunlight and a cool breeze filled the command center. After a few seconds, a soft thud could be heard emitting from somewhere below the windows.
"Think he's dead?" asked Angel, looking over at Sonic. He glanced back at her.
"No way," he answered, shaking his head. "He's a lot tougher than that." He then picked up the emerald belt off the chair, giving it a once over before deciding that he would just have to deal with it being tighter from having it strapped further up the belt as he threw it around his waist, buckling it with a slight wince at the tightness.
"I suppose. So what do we do now?" asked Angel as she walked up next to him.
"Well, Levi won't be back on his feet for a minute or two, so I want some answers. Did you do all that stuff in the other room and in here as an act or what, cause if so you didn't have to make it so painful," asked Sonic, rubbing his chin where Angel's blow earlier still stung slightly. She looked away from him.
"Well, to tell the truth, I wasn't acting at all. I wasn't lying about what promises mean to me. I could not disobey Leviathan. Rather, I was praying that Leviathan would screw up," she said.
"What do you mean?" asked Sonic, his left eye arching up.
"He made a mistake when he sent me to kill you in that giant room below. He told me that I was to kill you so that he could see you die at his feet. Well, I took that literally, meaning that if I killed you there, he couldn't see you 'die at his feet' as he had wished. He then canceled out that order when he had me tie you up like you were. The same thing happened here. When he ordered me to fulfill the promise I had made, he messed up by not specifying that it was my promise to him and not the one I made to you last night that I was supposed to fulfill. And the very first order he gave me was to follow through with whatever I was told to do until I had completed the task," she answered. Sonic couldn't help but crack a big smile as the realization dawned on him.
"And since he told you to fulfill the promise first and kill me second, he forced you to do them in that order," said Sonic.
"Exactly," she said. Sonic's grin then turned to one of worry as he took a step back.
"That doesn't mean that once we do resolve this matter you're going to try to kill me, does it?" he asked. Angel chuckled, which made Sonic even more nervous. Seeing his reactions she held up her hands in defense.
"Oh no no. I'm sorry. I didn't mean it like that. Once Leviathan's dead, I'm no longer bound by my promise to him, I swear it," she explained.
"Smart," said Sonic as he gave her a thumbs up. "Very smart." A loud echoing cry from outside caused them both to look back towards the windows. "Great. Sounds like ol' chopper face is pretty ticked off."
"I think we can take him. Between the two of us he won't stand a chance," said Angel as she gripped her sword. But as she started to walk towards the turbolift, Sonic threw an arm out in front of her.
"No," he said, keeping his gaze on the window. "If what Levi said is true, then one of us has to find the others before he sends guards to kill them. And no offense, but I'll be able to hold Levi off a lot longer than you can." Angel batted his arm away and moved in front of him.
"You have no right to deny me the chance to settle the score with that monster after all the things he's done to me," she said angrily, glaring right into the hedgehog's eyes. But Sonic didn't even flinch.
"I'm not trying to, but saving our friends and getting the Timestones is far more important right now. And if Levi gets involved in any way, then there's a good chance someone's gonna get hurt," said Sonic as he brushed Angel aside, walking up to the edge of one of the shattered windows. "If anyone's gonna get hurt, it's gonna be me."
"But going up against him alone is crazy," said Angel.
"Maybe," he said looking back at her with a smile on his face. "But then Sal's always said I was crazy." He then reached into his backpack, taking out Nicole and handing it to Angel. "I think you guys will need Nicole a lot more than I will." He then looked back out the window as he crossed his arms over his chest, throwing them out as his fur burst into a rainbow of colors, energy stars circling his body as the Super Emerald miniatures' power flowed into him. He then silently reached down and tore the two metal cuffs off his ankles with ease before doing the same to the ones still on his wrists. "Just find Tails and the others and then get the Timestones. If we don't get those, then everything we've sacrificed up to this point is lost." Angel tried to protest, but found herself unable to argue with the hedgehog. She sheathed her sword, then gave him a small nod as she put Nicole into her shorts' pocket.
"Understood. I'll do my best," she said sternly.
"Thanks for understanding, and good luck," he said, looking back at her with a smile on his face.
"Good luck to you as well Sonic," she said before she turned and ran into the turbolift, the doors slamming shut behind her. Sonic returned his attention forward, floating out of the broken window and looking down towards the foot of the base. His enhanced vision quickly spotted Leviathan rising to his feet nearly two hundred stories below him. Man...If he survived a fall like that, taking him down won't be easy, thought Sonic as he watched the robotic raptor steady himself. Then his sensitive ears picked up something that sent a chill down his spine. He's laughing...Why is he laughing?
"I just can't believe it," said Leviathan to himself as he got his laughter under control. "Outsmarted not once, but twice in one day. And by the same person no less. What a powerful and cunning ally she'll make once I get her back under my control." He couldn't stop the grin that had etched its way onto his face as he started walking towards the entrance to the tower. But before he could take even three steps, a flash of white light, like that of a flashbulb, burst in his face. "And thus the hero arrives, eager to defend his friends," he said mockingly as he stared into the red eyes of Hyper Sonic as he floated a few yards in front of the mecha bot.
"Can it Levi. After everything you've done, I'm not in the mood to hear it," said Sonic, fire raging behind his eyes, his face set in anger.
"Oh that's too bad hedgehog. I've wanted to test my metal, so to speak, against your hyper form ever since you blind-sided me back in our own timeline," said Leviathan. Sonic merely smirked, gesturing to Leviathan's severed right hand.
"After what Angel did to you, I doubt you'd last ten seconds against me," said Sonic.
"I wouldn't hold beliefs in what you first perceive," was Leviathan's only response as he closed his still functioning right eye. Suddenly, wiring and liquid metal shot out of the severed limb, quickly molding into the shape of a clawed hand before synthetic skin rapidly grew over the exposed parts of the inner workings. Sonic's mouth gaped in awe and worry as watched the process in the few brief seconds it took. Both of Leviathan's eyes shot open, the left eye fully repaired and functioning. "Because the truth can be far more terrifying than what your mind believes to be the truth."
"How did you do that?" asked the still awe struck Sonic. "Last time I hurt you, it took you almost ten times the amount of time to repair a lot less damage than that." Leviathan chortled as he bared his fangs and claws, getting into an offensive stance.
"Foolish hedgehog. I've had years to perfect the technology that gave me life. I am far superior to the weakling you knew from our timeline. So much so that I doubt even your powerful hyper form can stop me," hissed Leviathan, launching himself at Sonic with his fore claws outstretched. Sonic quickly brought his own hands out in front of him, catching Leviathan's clawed hands by the wrist despite them being twice the size of his own hands, and squeezing as hard as he could, feeling both of Leviathan's wrists crack and snap as Leviathan's forward motion came to an abrupt halt. Sonic smiled wickedly at Leviathan.
"Looks to me someone got too full of themselves and forgot what I can do in this form," said Sonic, noting that Leviathan's face went from being full of confidence to one of worry. Sonic then performed a fast back flip while still holding Leviathan's wrists, lifting the mecha bot over him and slamming him to the ground on his back. He then let go of Leviathan's wrists, which were now completely crushed into an unrecognizable shape. He then grabbed Leviathan by the tail and flew up into the air to about the halfway mark of the command tower. He then started to whip Leviathan around by the tail, the robotic raptor screeching in both pain and anger at Sonic as he swung him around faster and faster.
"Enjoy the flight Levi, cause it's on the house!" he shouted as he let go of the tail, sending Leviathan flying away from the tower and out over the remains of the security area Sonic had lain waste to not half an hour earlier. Leviathan's high-pitched cries of anger could be heard echoing in the distance as Sonic watched him finally crash through the canopy of the forest he and Angel had been in the night before. "Ouch...That had to hurt," said Sonic, smiling from ear to ear as he watched Leviathan's plunge through the treetops. A very loud screaming cry echoed from within the forest, causing Sonic's smile to instantly turn into a frown. "Doesn't know when to quit, does he?" he said to himself before flying off towards the forest to find Leviathan.