In His Footsteps

Target Malfunction

In the further galaxy…

An Interceptor flying through space, heading towards a nearby sector, led by three male Green Lanterns on a mission to investigate an incident.

“We received a report about some ‘unknown being’ causing destruction and havoc from one sector to next,” the first associate said,

“Are we close to our destination?” the captain asked,

“Affirmative, we should be at the coordinates no more than-” the second associate answered, until they felt something right on top of the ship,

“What was that?!” the captain asked,

“I’ll go check it out,” the first associate said,

“I’ll come with,” the second said, as they both left their post to investigate.

The Lanterns went to investigate as they flew outside of the ship, and reach to the top seeing nothing but an unusual dent,

“Did we got hit by some meteor?” the second asked,

“I doubt it,” the first said, before moving closer to the dent, no meteor could hit something this narrowed, and the fact that the size in the center is in a form of… a footprint,

“Looks more like it was stomped on… hard,” the first said.

Blast!

“Urgh!” the first turned around and saw the second unconscious while floating in space with, what appears to be a Black Energy around him,

“What is-?” the first said and then sensed something behind him, but before he could turn around…

Blast!

The captain waited for his associate to come back, but they haven’t,

“It shouldn’t take this long to check something,” he said, before he decided to leave to check with them until… the door slid open, revealing an intruder,

“Who are you? Identify yourself,” the captain said as he quickly has his Power ring to defend himself, the intruder is none of than the Black Armored Warrior.

“Stay back!” the captain said, before…

Blast!

He shot his Energy Canon at the intruder, but the Black Armored Warrior blocked his attack, and swiftly…

Blast!

Shot the captain the same Black Energy as the two associates… and others before them. After that…

Incoming message from Oa… the interceptor responded through the control panel,

"Hello captain, I’m contacting you to check with any progress of the investigation in regards of that ‘unknown being’ that’s been causing several incidents throughout three sectors,” the voice of another Green Lantern. The Black Armored Warrior approached the panels,

"Have you found any leads yet…? Captain, why aren’t you resp-”

Bam!(Punch)

The Black Armored Warrior punched the control panel, breaking contact from Oa, and right before leaving the Interceptor, waiting for more victims to come.

Meanwhile, at Lantern Corps Academy….

A few days has already passed since Harold decided to adjust himself to this place, taking some courses, and learning some things as being a Lantern. Also, dealing with the struggles of using his Power Ring, especially for today’s training in the Target Practice Chamber…

Green Lantern Kilowog is training the young Lanterns of having them practice their Energy Blast on moving targets, though he is rather above them, in a monitor room, behind an unbreakable glass, where he can only speak to them through the speakers,

"Today you will all be tested by practicing your aim and target for the upcoming exam, I expect each and every one of you to hit at least 20 targets, 10 if you hit the bullseyes. Once you succeed, you may leave early, otherwise, you’re gonna be here for quite some time,” Kilowog said to the young Lanterns through the speakers, as they’re in their position, all stood a line, in front of a huge wall where the targets are distances away from them, moving in certain directions, not staying still at all.

“Everyone in their position… and… Begin!” Kilowog yelled,

The young Lanterns started shooting their Energy Canons, many hit some targets, and some were able to hit the bullseye.

Blast! Blast! Blast! Blast!

Walter was able to hit all bullseyes with no problem whatsoever,

Blast! Blast! Blast!

Kihwog hit some targets with little effort but also no problem,

Blast!

Harold grunted as he misses the target….

Blast!

He misses again, “Come on!” He mumbled,

Blast! Blast! Blast!

And misses again, Harold grunted louder, feeling irritated,

“Take it easy Harold, you can’t keep shooting if you don’t have a good aim first,” Kihwog said,

“I am aiming, I just can’t hit a single shot,” Harold said,

Blast!

He missed another, irritating him more,

“Fear not Mr. Jordan, surely you’ll succeed through this,” Walter said to him,

“That’s easy for you to say, you hit all bullseye like it’s nothing,” Harold said as he tries again,

“Because it takes practice, and that is why we’re here, never give up hope Mr. Jordan, I’m sure you’ll get the hang of it,” Walter assured. Although he appreciated his comments, but not enough as they continued.

Hours has passed…

Many of the young Lanterns completed their task and left the chamber early, same with Kihwog and Walter, almost everyone left except Harold, who is left alone, still working on his energy blast, but keeps missing the target, which been irritating him.

Blast!

He missed another one, “I was so close! Why couldn’t I just hit a single target?” he grunted,

“Because you have terrible shot,” Harold startled before he turned and saw Rayza appeared right next to him,

“Rayza! Did you just got here?” he asked,

“Last minute free time before heading to my next course,” she stated, before she turned her head to him,

“And from what I’ve been observing, you lack focus and timing on your target, which makes it difficult for you to advance yourself in combat when going against your opponent,” Rayza explained,

“I suppose you may have some pointers? Maybe an example?” Harold asked, and before he know it…

Blast! Blast! Blast! Blast!

Harold stood shocked when Rayza hit all bullseyes with her Energy Canons without even looking at them,

“How did-?” Harold about to asked, until Rayza cut him off,

“The wrist,” she stated.

“What?” Harold asked,

“You need to adjust your wrist in a symmetrical position, that way you will aim at the moving target at a point blank at a precise moment,” she explained as she demonstrated her position,

Blast!

She hit another bullseye,

“Adjust the wrist, you’ll never miss,” she said, which did inspired Harold, so he followed her example as he adjusted his wrist then focus on the moving target, he positioned his ring to it….

“Wait for it… and… Fire!” Rayza instructed,

Blast!

He finally hit a target!

“Not bad, now let’s see if you can go again. You may never know if you ever encounter many enemies coming your way,” Rayza stated, as she went and blasted more targets, Harold went and continues the same.

...

Kilowog watches them both from above, witnessing them both practicing hitting targets together, which he finds rather impressive, then Mr. Worzard appeared,

“Hey! What she doing there? She knows she shouldn’t be ther-” he said, until Kilowog interfered,

“It’s fine,” he said.

“You’re actually allowing a young Red to participate?” Mr. Worzard asked, Kilowog turned to him,

“Yes… I am,” he told him, before he turned back to the young Lanterns, watching them as he is somehow intrigued how Harold isn’t afraid to be around her, and how Rayza is hardly cruel to him like she did to others. Almost remind him of both their fathers, how he missed them, it would be nice to see them again, or at least one of them.

...

Harold and Rayza was able to blast almost every moving target, until Rayza stopped herself so that Harold will blast the last two targets, making it his 20th shot. Harold looked at the targets he shot, and he was able to only hit one bullseye while the rest is just close to it, he smiled as he turned to Rayza, he couldn’t have done it with her advice,

“If you keep that up, then maybe you’ll actually survive here,” Rayza said,

“I could, or I’ll survive just by sticking by you-” he said until he noticed Rayza pointing her ring at him, ready to blast her next target; him,

“Kidding! Just kidding,” he quickly said.

Buzz!

They both heard a buzz, and noticed all the moving targets quickly reverted into the walls

“Oh, well I guess we’re done for the day,” Harold said, before he turned to Rayza, as she already started to leave,

“Maybe, I’ll escort you to your next cour-” Harold offered as he followed her,

“No,” she declined,

“Okay then,” he replied. As they’re reaching towards the exit…

Shut! Locked!

They stopped when the doors suddenly slid shut and locked in front of them,

“What the?!” Harold said.

...

Kilowog noticed and turned to the two counselors who were supposed to control the settings of this chamber,

“What just happened?” he asked them,

“There appears to be a glitch through the control database,” the first counselor said,

“Just needed a quick reboot and should be function properly,” the second counselor said, as they’re both fixing the problem.

...

“Hey, could you let us out, I’m done practicing, so I would like to leave please,” Harold yelled at his instructor from above,

“They can’t hear you, they can only speak to us from the monitors” Rayza stated,

"We’re dealing with some technical difficulties at the moment, so in the meantime, both of you just stay where you are, we’ll get you out soon,” Kilowog spoke to them through the speakers.

“Ooh… how wonderful,” Harold said sarcastically, as he did not expect this to happen to him, let alone be here with…

A thought occurred to Harold, realizing that he is indeed alone with Rayza, thus, making this is a perfect opportunity to finally get to talk to her! Although, being stuck in a chamber is not at all how pictured being alone with Rayza, but he’ll make an exception this one time.

“So… I guess, while they work on that, we’re stuck in here togeth-” he said as he tried to get a little close to her, until Rayza spoke, stopping him,

“Before you even think about making first contact, I have you know, I’ve dealt the guys like you many times before in certain situations,” she turned to him with a stern look on her face,

“I turned down, shot down, even throw down each and every one of them because I bare no interest, let alone time, in any of your childish behaviors,” she stated. Harold looked at her with concern,

“Why you have to be so harsh all the time? I mean, I get you’re serving under Red and all, but you don’t have to be all tough and ruthless all the time... not around me at least,” he said,

“Why are you only being nice to me even though everyone else here despises me?” Rayza asked,

“Well I’m not like everyone else, and you certainly are not like every Lantern here either,” Harold said, Rayza looked away from him,

“That’s because you haven’t been here that long, and you know nothing about me,” she clarified,

“But I like to… if you let me in,” he assured her. Rayza remained say anything as there is silence between them for a moment,

“I know I may had come on a little too direct and I should’ve respected your feelings beforehand, but I very much like to be around you, to talk to, hangout after courses, like, you know, as friends,” Harold said, Rayza eyes grew wide when he said ‘friends’, which is a small reminder of Khalia,

“You don’t want someone like me as a friend, I cannot be trusted by anybody,” she said,

“I can trust you… that is, if you can trust me,” he said, Rayza became silent again as he continues,

“I’m not the type to judge others by which ever Corps they serve under, but rather their personalities that makes a person, like I find yours rather unique… just misunderstood is all,” Rayza slowly turned to him again,

“And I meant what I said to you from before, I still like to get to know you… the real you,” Harold smiles at her, Rayza gazed at him as she used her visual ‘Lie-Detector’ to analyze his heart-rate, which soon calibrate the result to be... Truth. Thus, making her convinced by his words. Though that moment didn’t last when…

Buzz! Buzz!

They heard two buzzes, and turned to the walls, where the targets used to be, formed a huge door, that slowly slid opened, revealing darkness,

“What the?” Harold replied.

...

Once again, Kilowog noticed and turned to the two counselors, who appeared to be having some trouble with the control panels,

“What’s going on? You said it was just a glitch,” he said to them,

“I’m afraid it’s more than just a glitch, the circuits are overriding and the database is malfunctioning,” the first counselor stated.

“Can’t you shut it off?” Kilowog suggested,

“We tried that, it’s not responding, none of them are,” the second counselor said,

“We need to get them out of there quick!” Kilowog stated as he turned to the young Lanterns as they’re about to face serious trouble.

...

Harold begin to move close to the huge door to see what’s inside, but then Rayza placed her hand on his shoulder, stopping him,

“Don’t get any closer than that,” Rayza spoke, as she began to scan through the dark room, and it wasn’t long until she detected something in there… something big.

Stump! Stump!

They hear a loud mechanic stumping coming from there, and it wasn’t long as a huge figure merged out of the dark room, revealing itself to be a Mecha-droid version of the Manhunter, as it stood in front of young Lanterns.

“Whoa! I have never seen anything like that,” Harold said while looking at it,

"Neither have I,” Rayza whispered, as she dealt with small droids throughout her time here, but never a huge one like this.

The Mecha-droid looked down and scanned the two young Lanterns, as it spoke,

Targets detected!

“Targets?! Is it talking about us?” Harold asked, as they both notice it beginning to approach them, then it spoke,

Commence capture and eliminate targets!

“Eliminate!” Harold is shocked, as he and Rayza began to back away from the Mecha-droid,

“You trust me right?” Rayza asked,

“Wha-?” Harold turned to her,

“You said you’ll trust me if I trust you right?” she asked,

“Yes…” Harold answered.

“Then I’ll need you to trust me and follow my lead,” Rayza used her ring to construct a Red Staff/Spear,

“We’re gonna have to take it down,” she positioned herself,

“That huge thing?! I never fought anything that big before,” Harold said,

“Neither have I, but we can’t let it eliminate us either now can we,” Rayza pointed it out. Harold was not at all prepare for fighting, let alone against a huge Mecha-droid, however, Rayza is right about having no choice but to fight against it, so… he used his ring to construct a Green Bat with Spikes on it, and then positioned himself,

“This is not at all part of practice I had expected,” he stated, as he and Rayza are about to fight against a Mecha-droid.

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