*Chapter 21: Attack on the ARK!*
The shuttle lands by the doors of the ARK, and there are GUN soldiers coming out with their Commander. They all have their guns loaded, handcuffs, and bullet proof vests under the suits. Jim came out of the shuttle with a guilty expression. He really didn't want to do this to the people of the ARK. Still, he had to warn somebody about this.
"All right, men!" The Commander barked to have the soldiers' attention. "We are here to stop this Project: Shadow and we will put it down by force. Now, if anyone refuses to listen to us, we will shoot 'em!" Jim hides his hesitate when the Commander comes around him and the others. "The project that the foolish professor created is too dangerous for mankind. That man will be coming with us whether he likes it or not! Capture those who want to live, but do not spare the ones who refuse or help the project escape!"
"Yes sir!" The soldiers said, saluting. Jim didn't say a word, but the Commander didn't notice. He loaded his machine gun.
"Let's move out!"
The scientists are in panic of what is happening. The alarms still going off. They have to leave the colony. They are gathering their things to take, and families are gathering their loved ones. Abraham was in the room with his family who were with Ven. The father took the boy's hand to rush him out the door but there soldiers coming in with guns. The mother screamed in fear as the soldiers took Abraham away from the father.
"Release my son!" The father said.
"Everyone freeze!" One solider said, holding Abraham close. "If you all want to live, you have to come with us. This place is shutting down. Same goes with the creature that the professor created." The scientists have their hands up, same goes with Abraham's parents. They all kneel down. "Now, get up. Come with us, no one has to get-" Gunshots were heard from behind. The soldiers cursed in shock and started to shoot something. The soldier released Abraham and head out the door to see Widow running towards him and the soldiers with her claws out.
"This kitty has claws!" She says with a smirk, avoiding the bullets. She made a jump to go over the soldiers. "Catch me if you can!" She taunted.
"Shoot that cat!" The soldier said. "Don't let her escape!"
"But, she could know about Project: Shadow, sir!" The other said.
"No, she's Veldon's work. She ain't worth our time!" The third said. "Come on, men!" The three soldiers ran down the corridor to chase after Widow.
With Shadow and Maria, they were heading down to Gerald's lab, but they see him gathering his paper work and belongings. Shadow came up to him, asking what is going on until Maria's scream was heard. The doors burst open by Jim who took off his helmet. Maria took a step back until Jim spoke to her. Gerald and Shadow came towards him, and Shadow got in front of Maria to protect her.
"Please, I'm not here to harm all of you." Jim said. "Professor Gerald, I know you never mean any harm towards anyone."
"You...are willing to help us?" Gerald asked. "But, what about your GUN Commander?"
"I will do whatever I can to hold him off, but...just get out of this colony. They will kill you all if you refuse their orders. But, they want you alive, professor." Jim said. "Please, believe me." He looks down at Maria who had her eyes full of tears. "My god, look at you. I finally met you, the daughter of my best friend."
"...Huh?" Maria wondered. "Wait...you...knew my father?" Jim smiled a little and gave her a nod.
"He was a good man." He said. "I'd love to tell you more about him, but...now's not the time. I have to help you all to get out of here." Gerald turned to his granddaughter and Shadow who look up at him. Gerald grabbed Maria's shoulders.
"Maria, I want you to listen to me very carefully. You and Shadow must go to the escape pod room. You two must go to Earth. I will be right behind you." He said seriously. "Whatever you two do, just run. Jim can help us. I trust him and believe his words about my son."
"But, what about you?" Maria asked. "Can't you just come with us?"
"They want me alive, my dear." Gerald said. "I'm sorry, but we will meet again soon." He turned to Shadow. "Now, Shadow, protect her from all costs. Make sure those damn soldiers don't have their hands on her. Keep her safe. I'm counting on you." He said. Shadow gave him a nod.
"I promise, professor. I swear I will keep Maria safe." He said. Gerald gave Maria a hug. Maria's tears fall from her eyes. She didn't want to leave him here, but she didn't have a choice. Jim waits by the door for Shadow and Maria. After a hug, Shadow took Maria's hand to head out of the lab with Jim. Gerald watched with a sad look on his face. Jim turned back to him, giving him a nod, promising that he will keep Shadow and Maria safe.
"Be safe..." Gerald said. He sat by his desk, waiting for soldiers to come to arrest him. "We will meet again on Earth..."
Jim was ahead of Shadow and Maria of the corridors, checking to make no soldiers are around. Jim signaled Shadow to go on ahead with Maria. Since the Space Colony ARK was a big place, it will take a lot of time for the GUN soldiers to find Shadow. Maria lets go of Shadow's hand to came beside Jim.
"I know we just met, but...I wanted to thank you for helping us, sir." She said. "I can't believe I'm meeting a friend of my dad's."
"We were so close, like brothers." Jim said. "And believe it or not, we're blood brothers."
"What? You cut your hands and mix your blood together?" Maria asked with a disgust look on her face. "But, you didn't get any AIDS, did you?" Jim laughed a little.
"Nah. We don't get anything. It's a miracle." Jim said. Shadow turned back to hear the conversation. Jim seems like a nice trusting guy since he was good friends with Maria's father, Tron Robotnik. "Now that we have to arrest or kill anyone, I...I have to risk this chance to help all of you." Jim said frowning. "You're Tron's daughter. And I have to do this for him and Hope. You're important to them." Maria then gave him a hug, making them stop walking. Shadow watched in silent, but smiled a little. Jim returned the hug. "She's always like this, huh?" He asked.
"Yeah." Shadow replied. Maria releases Jim and they continue to go down the halls, and they hear gunshots ahead of them.
"Oh crap." Jim said. "You two, get behind me." Shadow took Maria's hand and got behind their new friend. Jim got his machine gun ready and went up to the doors and found fire in corners and see some men wounded by the attacks of the soldiers. Maria came up the researcher.
"Oh no. What happened to you?" She asked.
"Run..." The man said. "They're coming for...Shadow."
"But, you're hurt." Maria said, seeing the bullet hold on the side of his body. "Come on, we'll get you the-"
"Hold it right there!" A female voice barked. Maria gasped and turned around to see the female GUN solider aiming her gun at her. "Step away from the man." She said. Maria had her hands up and step away from the researcher. The woman came up to her to get the handcuffs, but Jim uses the back of the gun to knock her out cold.
"Oh god..." Maria whispered.
"They're getting close. We have to go now." Jim said. Shadow took Maria's hand and they both followed Jim down to the different direction. "Goddammit, it's like a maze here."
"Then follow us!" Shadow says by running ahead with Maria behind him. Jim followed the two and hear more gunshots and screaming. Maria shuts her eyes. People are getting killed or taken away. This is like a nightmare. As they arrive at the door, there are groups of soldiers inside.
"Oh no!" Maria cried out.
"Hey, that's the creature!" The soldier cried out. But, the men noticed Jim behind Shadow and Maria. "Jim. Good you've captured them."
"Maria, Shadow, run!" Jim said.
"What?" Maria asked. But, Shadow drags her out of the room to escape. The soldiers were about to chase them, but Jim blocked them by shooting the ground near their feet.
"Jim, what the hell?!"
"You were helping them?!"
"Get out of the way, traitor!"
"You have me to deal with." Jim told them. "Go ahead and shoot me. Make my day..." Before one of the soldiers who aim a gun at him, they all hear a gunshot. Jim's head was shot from behind. He fell lifelessly on the floor. The Commander stood there with a pistol. The soldiers watched the body on the floor in shock.
"Bastard." The Commander said, kicking the side. "Should have known about him all along." He looked up at the men. "Find the creature! Find the professor! Kill anyone who refuses!" The soldiers saluted and head out the doors as the Commander puts away his pistol and got out his machine gun.
Shadow and Maria are hiding above the grounds of the corridors. They are on the catwalk to watch the soldiers running down the halls, looking for Shadow and Gerald. They are the main targets of this day. Maria was in the corner, crying a little in fear. She is in panic mode. Shadow got out his gun and hand it over to Maria who hesitated the offer.
"You need to armed, Maria. I told you this before." Shadow said. "I taught you about using a gun, and you can take down those guys, but not killing them. Just shoot their knees to make them go down." Maria looks up at him, tears continue to fall from her eyes. Shadow kneels down to face her. "We have to fight! We can't be afraid of them, because it will make us weaker!" He said. "Protect me, protect you. We have to be strong together."
"...Shadow...I don't know if I can..." Maria said. "I'm so scared!"
"It's okay to be scared, but right now, you can't be. We have to fight together!" Shadow told her, handing her the gun. Maria slowly took the gun from him. She started to load it. Shadow uses his thumb to dry her tears from her face. "Don't cry." He said. Maria took a breath to calm herself.
"...Okay. Okay." She said. "I have to do this. For my grandfather, for everyone."
"Good." Shadow said. "Now come on." They both climbed down to be on the ground and rush down the halls to find the escape pod room. "Stay with me, no matter what happens. Okay?"
"I'll never leave you, Shadow." Maria said.
"Freeze!" A male voice yelled. Shadow and Maria turned back to see the Commander there with the machine gun. Shadow got in front of Maria. The Commander aims his gun at Shadow, and Maria aims her pistol at the Commander's knees and pulled the trigger. The Commander let out a yell and fell to the ground. Shadow turned back to Maria with a smirk.
"Let's go!" He said by taking her hand and run away from the wounded Commander who cursed. He got his talkie out.
"The creature is with the little girl with the disease." He said. "Kill them both!"
The GUN soldiers are roaming around each area of the hallways and rooms. Abraham and his family are hiding in the grand hall, but in the small room. The father got his gun loaded and look out the doors to see the soldiers around. He turned to his son and wife.
"I'll go out first to stall them and you two make a run for it." He said.
"Be careful, hon." The wife said. He is holding Abraham close to her body. The husband walked out of the doors quietly. Abraham waited for anything to happen, but he was worried about everybody else. Gerald, Maria, everyone.
"Mom, I hope Maria and the others are okay..." He said. Then, they hear shouting from the hall. The mother told her son to stay put and she heads out the door. Abraham listens to more screaming, gunshots, and more. But he hears Maria's voice out there. Abraham didn't move from his spot. He is too frightened. Then, he hears Shadow's voice there. The soldiers' voices were yelling, and more gunshots were heard. Abraham covered his ears to block the noises, shutting his eyes. After a few minutes, Abraham uncovered his ears and walk out the room to see the hall filled with unconscious bodies, but there are two dead ones. Abraham ran up to his parents' dead bodies and broke down.
'No...no...no...' He thought. He started to sob and rests his head on his father's chest. His parents were killed. Coming in the grand hall was a Commander with a machine gun, limping because Maria shot his kneecap. Abraham looks up at him with tears falling down. The Commander stares at him.
"Come, son." He said. "You must come down to Earth. If you wish to live, come with me." Abraham didn't say anything to him. He looks at the wound on his kneecap. "We will protect you from any harm." The Commander said. "You will stay with us." Abraham slowly stood up and the Commander took his hand to walk him out of the grand hall. Abraham looks back at his dead parents with a look. He will have his revenge...
"That was a close one." Maria says, catching her breath, hiding behind the wall. "I thought they shot you, Shadow."
"No." Shadow said, catching his breath as well. "But, we make them go down by force."
"And Shadow...you...look like you were about to use your Chaos Blast on them, but...you won't use it on them, will you?" Maria asked. Shadow looks at her in silent. His powers are really that powerful, even his Chaos Blast can injure anyone. Or kill them. "Shadow, you know I can't kill. I don't want any lives to go to waste." Maria said. Shadow held her hand.
"Maria, we won't kill them. I swear." He said. Maria kissed his forehead.
"Thank you, Shadow..." She said. Shadow blushed a little, and nodded at her.
"Let's get to the escape pods." He said. Maria nodded at him. They sneak around the corridors and walked in the room and there is a robot coming down in front of them. Maria gasped, taking a few steps back and Shadow was in front of her.
"Heavy Dog reporting. The black hedgehog and the girl have been located. Aim to set and destroy." A male voice said inside the robot. There is a soldier inside. The doors behind Shadow and Maria were closed shut, locking them in.
"Oh god, no!" Maria cried out in shock. "We're trapped!"
"Maria, find cover." Shadow said by turning red. Maria went around the platform and held her head. Shadow had no choice but to fight Heavy Dog. "How dare you try to harm us, you disgusting humans!" Shadow growled. The robot shoots the glowing hedgehog, but Shadow didn't feel any pain. "CHAOS...BLAST!" The red form appears, and Heavy Dog flew against the walls, and it was down. There are three GUN soldiers climbing out in pain. Shadow came up towards them in anger.
"Shadow, no!" Maria cried out. Shadow stopped and look at her. Her blue eyes are full of pleading. Shadow looks back at the soldiers and grabbed one of them by the throat.
"Leave this place at once..." He growled and throw him back on the ground. Maria gave the soldier a sorry look in her eyes. Shadow came up to the locked door and uses his power to burst it down. "Maria, come on." He said as Maria came behind him. They left the soldiers wounded. "We have to get the hell out of here." Shadow told his friend.
"Freeze, both of you!" A voice yelled from behind them. Shadow and Maria turned to see five soldiers there. "It's the creature and the girl!"
"Come on!" Shadow says by dragging Maria down the corridors. The soldiers are following them with their guns. One of them is shooting, but neither of the bullets hit them. Maria got her gun out and try to shoot one of them, but missed. She threw the gun at them and turn back to the front.
"The Commander and the President want them down!"
"Get away from us!" Maria shouted at them, and gunshot was heard and the bullet nearly hit her. Shadow looks back to see the soldiers continue to chase them down. This is not going to end so well. But, Shadow will have to get to Maria to safety. He had to protect her.