Mortal Kombat: Ascension

Chapter 1: Decisions, Decisions

Chapter One

"...ana...Kitana..."

Woozy, Kitana slowly opened her eyes. Through her bluured vision, she could make out two figures crouching over her. One of them was waving their hand in front of her face, snapping their fingers on occasion. As her vision cleared, she saw both her husband and her best friend looking at her with concerned looks on their faces.

Kitana felt like Kahn had drilled her in her skull with his Wrath Hammer. "Ugh...what happened?" she groaned, holding her head.

Liu had his hands on her shoulders and was gently raising her to a sitting posistion. "I don't know," he replied. "The last thing we all remember was that we were at the apex when Blaze was defeated. Then he exploded and we were all knocked out cold."

Kitana looked around. It appeared that they were inside a temple of sorts. Lit torches lined the walls. Outside, they can see that it was raining.

The Edenian princess also noticed that she wasn't alone. In one corner, the Lin Kuei cryomancer Subzero was helping Sareena to her feet. Kitana noticed that his mask was off, and that he looked much younger and that his forearms and hands weren't blue, reminding her of how he looked during the Outworld invasion. 'Maybe it was because of the Dragon Medallion,' she thought.

A wry smile came across her face as Sareena realized that she was naked. The former assassin of Quan Chi 'eeped' and hid behind Subzero in some form of modesty.

Jax and Sonya were helping Johnny Cage to his feet. For the first time since the Outworld tournament, the bionic implants that Jax had wore were now absent, showing off his real arms.

"Take it easy," Jax said. "Are you okay?"

Johnny, without his trademark sunglasses, shook his head. "Anyone get the number of that truck...or tank?"

Kung Lao, in the meantime, was standing over the body of Scorpion. The specter was flat on his back, eyes closed. In the meantime, Sareena had found a discarded piece of cloth long enough to cover her body and wrapped it around herself. Subzero, in the meantime, was standing beside Kung Lao.

"Is he dead?" Kung Lao asked.

Subzero shook his head. "One thing about specters is that they don't stay dead. You can kill them in any way possible, and they still come after you."

The Lin Kuei grandmaster and the descendant of the Great Kung Lao immediately hopped back when one of Scorpion's arms shot upward, releasing his trademark Spear. The roped kunai impaled itself into the ceiling, allowing Scorpion to pull himself to his feet. Once the yellow-clad ninja was standing, the spear dislodged from the ceiling and went back into his hand.

In an instant, his hands went to his mask and in one quick motion, Scorpion yanked it off. Instead of the flaming skull that everyone was used to seeing when Scorpion removed his mask before lambasting his defeated opponent, they were shocked to see a human face instead. A handsome face of Japanese ancestry with black hair neatly combed back, and dark brown eyes, instead of the lifeless white ones. Scorpion felt his face, feeling warm flesh instead of hard bone.

"I'm...alive?" he croaked. "How..."

"...is that possible?" a new voice said, interrupting Scorpion's chain of thought. "It is the will of the Elder Gods, ninja."

A tall man with gray hair and a matching bears appeared, dressed in Edenian robes. Kitana and Jade recognized him almost immediately. Kitana bowed, as did Jade. "Lord Argus," Kitana began. "What are you doing here? I thought you were dead."

"As you can see, young Kitana," Argus replied, "I, as well as my wife, are very much alive. This temple which all of you are in, is holy ground."

Sareena blanched. "If this is holy ground, then why am I here? I'm a demon from the Netherrealm. So I shouldn't be here. If anything, I should either be dead or ejected back to the Netherrealm."

"Allow me to explain that part," Argus said. "When you were caught in the Blaze's essence, your demon side was destroyed. You are now fully human." He looked at Scorpion. "And you were granted your life back." He paused for a moment. "I have foreseen many years ago that battles in the name of Mortal Kombat would cause Armageddon, so Delia created both Blaze and the pyramid as a sort of a fail-safe plan."

Liu was starting to understand. "And you had your two sons compete for the prize should they defeat Blaze."

"Unfortunately, I wasn't expecting the power to pass through Taven and into all of you," Argus replied. "Delia came to me and suggested a new plan." He paused for a moment, scanning each of their faces. "You all know that Shinnok had exterminated most of the gods in his attack on Earthrealm and Shao Kahn had done the same thing when he invaded Edenia. The Elder Gods have given me permission to give all of you a choice. One that will change all of your lives."

"Which is...?" Sonya began.

"All of you will transend your humanity...and become the new gods to protect the realms..." Argus paused to look at Liu. "...and Lord Rayden has asked that you, Liu Kang, to take his place as the God of Thunder."

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