Prologue: Escape from Pandemonium
“The helicopter’s here! We’re saved!” Isrina slashed a black-clad commando as she dashed to the moors.
The Reaper Squad stormed through the harbor of Lisbon, Portugal, firing purple hot lasers from their bayonetted rifles at Isrina and her five companions, the last UICA survivors of the Kneapexist conquest of the Middle East and Europe.
Isrina’s team cut their way against the breezing firepower. Soon, they felt the spinning wind from a helicopter. Covinski’s chopper turned on the side as it hovered beside the docks, opening a ramp on the edge of the wharf.
Naphthien thrashed chain claws at the enemy units, slicing them with steel fingers, covering Saitori and Cecilius as they hopped inside the helicopter.
The commandos flung thin arsenic needles at Rahim and Isrina. Rahim drew his scythes to deflect the whirling projectiles. He then threw his blades at the soldiers. One by one, they fell as Rahim’s deadly sickles pierced their heads.
Isrina swung her laser-edged blade at the bullets, attacking the troopers with a flurry of slashes. She dodged the glowing bayonet of the remaining commando’s rifle, bashing his head with the hilt end of her blade. Isrina finished him with a stab through the heart.
“Is that everyone?” A throaty voice shouted from the cockpit. “We can’t stay here!”
“Thank you, General Covinski,” Cecilius spoke. “We just need to wait for Oreic.”
The group heard an explosion across the pier full of dead commandos. Oreic spun his flaming saxophone bo staff against SANDRA’s war fans. SANDRA morphed her weapons together into a bubbling circle of lightning. It zapped Oreic, paralyzed him on the ground.
“Saitori, take this,” Isrina lifted off her red backpack, giving it to Saitori. “I’ll handle her!”
“Thy tricks are unavailing to my sorcery,” SANDRA folded her palms. “Thou shalt rejoice! Supreme Herald Fanghui has brought peace to the blasphemous Middle East and the ludicrous Europeans!”
Oreic lunged his hand out, launching a fireball at her. SANDRA caught it, electrifying the fire into a shady sphere that vacuumed the surrounding air. She sent the projectile back to Oreic. Isrina leaped in front to slash the shadowy orb into halves.
“Dr. Niang!” Oreic stood.
“Let’s move!” Isrina flipped her sword across her grip.
SANDRA raised her hands to create two spinning cyclones of electricity that fired large rays at Isrina. Oreic formed a heat shield that blocked the attack.
“We have to leave!” Saitori’s voice sounded from the helicopter.
“Oreic! Get inside!” Isrina charged at SANDRA.
Covinski’s helicopter flew close. Oreic high-humped on board. With a flick of her finger, SANDRA directed the beams to Isrina. She rolled underneath the laser blasts, attacking SANDRA with rolling punches. SANDRA held a palm up to summon hexagon shields that deflected each punch. Isrina backflipped in the air, slamming her two feet at SANDRA’s face with a Flamingo’s Talon kick before jumping into the chopper.
“Oh, my god…” Cecilius saw three purple portals tearing through the sky.
“Chimaeras…” Rahim grimaced.
Giant shark-shaped warships swam out of the dark miasmic voids with their metal bodies glaring with the sunset.
“Let’s get out off here!” Covinski swerved the helicopter over the sea.
The gray frigates fired their battleship fin cannons at the aircraft.
“Hang on!” Covinski frantically swung the chopper from the explosions.
“Can this go any faster?” Rahim shouted as Naphthien clung to arm.
“I’m risking my life for you people! A thank you wouldn’t hurt!”
“Defoliator beams incoming!” Saitori yelled.
The chimaeras’ heads opened sideways, revealing long, gleaming cannons. They fired pairs of plasma fireballs that spun across each other in DNA molecules. Covinski spun the helicopter away from the whirling particles. The aircraft vibrated as a pair of plasma orbs exploded the water underneath them, causing a Saturn-shaped explosion that made the water erupt into a volcano.
“Crap! It’s SANDRA!” Rahim yelled.
SANDRA ran for the edge of the pier, growling with rage as her electric powers healed her face. She clapped her palms to create a colorful, mesmerizing barrier. The Machine Queen launched the spinning kaleidoscopic wall at the helicopter.
Oreic made a series of Tai-Chi moves with his knees bent, extending his palms out to summon a fiery phoenix that collided with the mystical shield. The explosion made the aircraft flip across the air.
Isrina clung to her backpack as the aircraft spun to the ocean. Covinski frantically pressed buttons across the cockpit, then shoving levers down with all of his strength, straightening the helicopter up before it could touch the water.
“Whew. Is everyone okay?” He asked. “Where’s my thank you? I know President Forroway and I are gonna get yelled at for helping you UICA folks!”
“General Covinski. You do not know how thankful we are,” Cecilius made a weary smile.
“We… we finally escaped from all that hell,” Rahim sighed.
Isrina sat down, puffing. She gently placed the backpack next to her. Isrina looked around before deciding that her backpack was safe.
“My little chickadee,” She smiled, opening the lid of her backpack.
The group gathered around the backpack. They looked at Isrina’s sleeping baby holding onto a stuffed black-capped chickadee.
“Shien,” Isrina stroked the baby’s small face. “You’re my only treasure, my everything. As long as I live, Fanghui will never lay a finger on you.”