Sitting with an expression mixed with shock and fear, Mr. Belpois leaned back in his chair at the sight of the children emerging from the elevator. After a few seconds of silence, the genius quickly regained his composure and asked, “What are you children doing here? I told you all to stay at home!”
“Daddy, we’re sorry,” said Maya. “But please understand, we only want to help you all.”
“It’s true Mr. Belpois,” said Jace. “There was no way we were going to let you all do this alone.”
Trying his hardest to keep his cool, the father of Maya and Adele walked over to the group and said, “Kids, listen to me, you shouldn’t be here. It’s far too dangerous. X.A.N.A. is unlike anything you kids have ever faced.”
Suddenly, Mr. Belpois noticed that the kids looked soaked to the marrow and asked, “Why are you kids soaked with water?”
“If we had to take any guess,” replied Kevin. “That’s likely X.A.N.A.’s doing. On our way here, it started pouring down rain, and the wind nearly blew us all away as we got to the bridge.”
“What?!” said the father of two. “I’ve got to let the ladies know what’s going on.”
Worried about her father’s sudden haste, Adele uttered, “Daddy, are you okay?”
“Yumi, Aelita,” exclaimed Mr. Belpois to his wife and Mrs. Stern.
“Jeremie! Where have you been?” replied his pink-haired bride.
Wasting no time, he said, “No time for that right now sweetheart. Looks like X.A.N.A.’s launching a major storm on Kadic. It nearly took out the kids when they followed us.”
“Wait, what?!” shouted Mrs. Stern. “They followed us?”
Puzzled by her question, Mr. Belpois got off that subject and said, “Like I said, now’s not the time to worry about that. Right now, we need to find a way we can get to that tower quickly.”
Looking at the labyrinth of tall rocks and the mantas circling over them, Mrs. Belpois and Mrs. Stern realized it was almost impossible to try and wind their way through all the rocks without being roasted by the mantas’ lasers.
Seeing just how much her father and mother were in distress, Maya spoke up amidst the silence and said, “Dad, is mom in trouble?”
No answer came out of her father’s mouth, which led to Maya proposing something that caught him completely off guard, “Dad, if mom's in trouble, why don't you send me and Adele to Lyoko?”
“What?” he said in shock.
Stepping forward, Adele followed her sister saying, “Send us both dad. If you do, we can protect mom and give her a chance to stop X.A.N.A.”
“They have a point Mr. Belpois,” said Jace affirming his girlfriend’s proposal. “After all, there is strength in num…”
“Absolutely not,” said Mr. Belpois cutting off Jace’s sentence. “You children have done enough as it is. I won’t let you get into this any further.”
“Dad…” said Adele with a broken voice as she grasped to her boyfriend tightly. It seemed as though Maya and Adele’s worst fear had come to pass… their father had reached the limit of his patience with them.
With gentleness in her voice, the blonde genius’s pink-haired princess spoke over the headset saying, “Jeremie, at this rate, there’s no way Yumi and I can reach the tower on our own, at least not with the mantas flying overhead.
“I know you’re trying to protect our children,” she continued. “But sweetheart, if we don’t do something soon, everyone is going to suffer.”
After a few minutes of ominous silence, Maya and Adele pleaded one last time with their father to send them to Lyoko.
Finally, Mr. Belpois got up from his chair, knelt down to his children and tightly embraced them both saying words that could only come from a humbled heart, “I’m so sorry you two.”
Stunned by their father’s words, the two girls embraced their father back as he continued saying, “I’m so sorry for keeping this secret from you both.”
“We all are,” said Mr. Stern as they stepped out of the elevator.
“Dad!” shouted Yumiko and Oliver as each child ran to hug their respective father.
Looking back at his children, Mr. Belpois said, “Our main reason for not telling you about Lyoko, was to make sure you all could grow up knowing that our world was a safe place without danger.
“But it’s obvious,” he continued. “The threat of X.A.N.A. will never truly go away. That having been said, if you two are serious about going to Lyoko to protect your mother… then… it’s best you both go as quickly as possible.”
Smiling at their father’s sudden change of heart, the two girls gave their father a tight embrace and prepared themselves to make the journey back to the virtual world.
“However, before I do send you to your mother,” he said with caution in his voice. “You girls need to be extremely careful. Your mother and Mrs. Stern are surrounded right now by X.A.N.A.’s monsters, so things will be different when you arrive.
“Most importantly,” he continued. “Do exactly as your mother and I tell you. You both have never fought X.A.N.A. before, so it’s important that you listen to our instructions.”
After hearing their father’s warning, both Maya and Adele agreed to their father’s orders, and prepared to head for the scanners.
But before they could reach the elevator, both Jace and Kevin knew they couldn’t let their girlfriends’ go to Lyoko alone, and the two volunteered to accompany and protect them on the trip.
Hesitating for a moment, Mr. Belpois realized this was the best way to make sure his girls would be safe, and the father of two allowed for them both to follow them to the scanners.
Wasting no time at all, the four young warriors hit the switch to take the elevator to the scanner room. Descending in the steel elevator, the two couples locked hands with each other, as they awaited the doors to open to reveal the scanners.
Finally, as the doors opened with a flourish, the four made their way to the center of the room and began saying a prayer, asking God to give them a safe trip to Lyoko and to give them strength to combat X.A.N.A. and his monsters so that their mothers would be safe.
Saying a heartfelt “Amen,” together, each couple shared a quick kiss before Kevin and Jace stood by and watched their two angels prepare to travel to Lyoko.
“You think we can do it?” asked Kevin slightly unsure, as the doors closed around the two girls.
Placing his hand on his friend’s shoulder, Jace replied saying, “You heard Mr. Belpois, as long as we follow their instructions, we’ll be able to hold our own.
“And in any case,” he added. “When in doubt, just remember Philippians 4:13… ‘I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me.’”
Smiling at his reminder of Christ’s love and protection, Kevin stepped into the scanner that his girlfriend was sent through, with Jace following suit in the adjacent scanner.
And with lightning-fast speed, Mr. Belpois completed the final algorithm needed and virtualized the two boys to join into the battle to determine the fate of mankind itself.