Hello, everybody, here's[url=https://www.bungie.net/en/Forums/Post/217844522] part 67[/url] of Into the Hellmouth! Here's part 66 if you missed it, or, if you're looking for a different part, here's the [url=https://www.bungie.net/en/Forums/Post/218014377?page=0&sort=0&showBanned=0&path=1]master post[/url]! By the way, I'll be publishing part 68 this Saturday. As usual, if you like it, give it bump, and I'll get more out soon! Stay classy, Guardians!
“Incoming ships, please identify yourselves.” Amanda’s drawl sounded over the comms.
Ikora keyed the comms. “This is Ikora Rey, coming in for a landing,” she said.
“Copy that, Ikora,” she said. “Who’s in the ship behind you?”
“A friend,” Ikora responded.
Amanda paused. “Do they have clearance to land?”
“Yes,” Ikora said, “they have my clearance.”
Amanda paused. “Alrighty then,” she said. “Come on in.”
The two ships flew into the hanger bay. Ikora quickly transmatted out of the ship, and onto the hanger floor. All of the sudden, she saw Amanda advancing towards them. “Howdy!” the shipwright said.
Ikora waved a hand in greeting. “Hello.”
The shipwright approached. “What are you doing?” Ikora asked.
“Well, I wanted to see whatever brought you out of the Tower for myself,” Amanda replied. She turned her attention to Eris’s ship. “Hey! Never seen this ship before.”
“You wouldn’t have,” Ikora muttered.
“It’s an older model too,” she said. “We stopped making engines like that back in -“ she stopped.
Eris had stepped out of the ship, and was staring at Amanda. Amanda stared right back, a look of shock on her face. “Ikora,” she said. “What the hell -“
Ikora licked her lips. “Amanda, this is Eris Morn,” she said. “One of my Hidden. Eris, this is Amanda Holiday. Our Shipwright.”
Eris walked up to Amanda, and looked her over. Amanda appeared too shocked to move. “What happened to Max?” she said at last.
“Max retired,” Ikora replied. “Amanda was his, ah, apprentice, if you will.”
Eris nodded. “Hello, Amanda,” she said.
Amanda managed a brief nod back. “Hi.”
Eris walked past her.
Amanda’s stunned gaze followed the former hunter. “Ikora?” she said. “What the hell is that?”
“You mean who,” Ikora said.
“Fine, who the hell is that?” Amanda said.
Ikora sighed. “She’s a Guardian,” she said. “She’s been trapped on Luna for the past thirty years.”
“Thirty years.” Amanda let out a low whistle. “What’s with her eyes?”
Ikora ignored the question. “Amanda,” she said. “I’m going to have to ask that you keep this secret,” she said. “Don’t tell anybody about Eris’s presence until I give the all-clear.”
“Noted,” Amanda said. Her gaze follow the former Guardian. “Is she what you went out there for?”
Ikora looked thoughtful. “In a manner of speaking, I suppose so,” she said. “Though I didn’t know it at the time.” And with that, she followed Eris out of the hanger.
Some time later, they had arrived in Ikora’s room. Eris looked around. “They’re having me stay with you?” she asked.
Ikora blinked. Eris seemed to be under the impression that the Vanguard knew about her. “Well, it’s more like the place you’re staying until I can . . . introduce you. . . to them,” she said carefully.
Eris frowned. “You mean you haven’t told them that I’m here?” she asked. “They haven’t formally granted me permission to stay?”
Ikora sighed. “In all honesty, Cayde was the only one who knew why I was leaving,” she said. “In fact, no one outside the Consensus even knows that you went to defeat Crota.”
Eris nodded slowly. “How’d they find out?” she asked.
“Zavala,” Ikora responded. “He put two and two together, and, well. . .” she let her voice trail off. “The decision was made to frame your deaths as a tragic coincidence, in order to prevent more Guardians from seeking vengeance on your behalves.”
Eris nodded, and stared down at the orb in her hands. “And so we were relegated to the backwater of history,” she said.
Ikora frowned. “Eris,” she said. “I want you to know that I did everything I could to ensure that you had proper recognition for -“
“It’s alright, Ikora,” she said. “I didn’t expect to return home to find myself a hero.” She looked around the room. “I see you haven’t redecorated in all the time I’ve been gone.”
“Live for a few centuries, and thirty three years can fly by,” Ikora responded with a faint smile. “However, things have changed since you’ve been gone.” She handed Eris a tablet. “Here - it’s hooked up to the City archives. You should learn everything that you need to know from it.”
“Thank you,” Eris said. She began to read through the history of the City.
Ikora watched her. “While you’re doing that, I’ll get the Vanguard assembled,” she said.
“To do what?” Eris asked.
“Debrief you,” she responded. “It’s time your story was told, Eris.”
The hunter nodded. “Alright,” she said. “I’ll be ready.”
Ikora nodded. She looked to her Ghost. “Ghost?” she said. “Have Zavala, Cayde, and the Speaker meet me in the Hall of Guardians. Tell them it’s important, and that they should have everyone else clear the room - we’ll need privacy.”
“Will do,” her Ghost said.
About an hour later, Ikora was in the hall of Guardians, leaning on the table. Zavala, Cayde, and the Speaker were all staring at her. “Well?” the Speaker asked. “Why have you brought us here, Ikora? Has something happened?”
Ikora looked around. Cayde had followed her instructions, and cleared the room. Even the frames had left the room.
She took a deep breath. “I’ll be brief,” she said. “Speaker. You may recall that, thirty years ago, you learned that a fire team had gone to Luna, seeking revenge for their fallen comrades. Yes?”
Zavala looked surprised at her mention of the event. Cayde, less so. The Speaker, however, nodded in comprehension. “I do,” he said. “They had even enlisted Toland in their campaign, if I recall correctly.”
“You do,” Ikora replied. “But there is something that you don’t know about this fire team.” She took a deep breath. “I supervised its creation, and personally advised them on numerous occasions.”
Cayde blinked with surprise, and Zavala stared at her, open-mouthed. The Speaker’s only movement was to turn towards Zavala. “This is quite different than the story that you told me,” he said.
Ikora spoke up before the titan dared incriminate himself. “Zavala was ignorant in the matter,” she said. “He discovered the plot quite by accident.”
The Speaker turned towards her again. “Yet you did not think to mention your involvement during the Consensus hearing,” he said.
Ikora sighed. “My transgressions are my own, and you may judge me for them at a later date,” she said. “In the meantime, I would continue with my story.”
The Speaker nodded. “Very well then,” he said. “Continue.”
Ikora nodded. “Last night, I received a distress signal from one of those five Guardians,” she said. She saw no reason to mention the Hidden to the Vanguard. They had been secret this long, and there was nothing to be gained by revealing their existence now.
“Interesting, but hardly cause for concern,” the Speaker said. “The signal could have been activated accidentally.”
“I agree, Speaker,” Ikora said, “except for the fact that the signal came from Old Russia.”
The Speaker nodded, his masked face betraying no emotion. “That is troubling indeed,” he said. “We shall send a fire team to investigate.”
Ikora shook her head. “There’s no need,” she said. “I took it upon myself to investigate the signal last night.”
Zavala swore. “You abandoned your post at the Vanguard to chase down some -“ he began.
“As I said before, Zavala, my transgressions are my own, and I you may judge me for them at a later date,” Ikora interrupted.
“Yes,” the Speaker said. “Quiet, Zavala. I am quite interested to hear what she found.”
Ikora nodded. “I went to the location, and discovered something - someone - that I did not expect,” she said. She keyed her mic. “Come in,” she said.
And with that, a nearby door opened, and Eris Morn stepped out. With her form half-covered in shadow, and the three glowing eyes in her forehead, she cut quite the figure.
The reactions were more or less what she expected. Zavala cursed, and readied himself in a fighting stance. The Speaker took a step back in revulsion. Cayde’s hand instinctively went to his belt, ready to draw his knife. “Wait!” Ikora cried, putting her hands up.
She faced the Vanguard. “Friends. Colleagues. I give you Eris Morn, last survivor of the fire team that Eriana-3 lead into the Hellmouth, all those years ago.”
Eris stepped forward, and looked at the Guardians before her. “Hello,” she said.
None of the Vanguard seemed capable of response.
Ikora faced the Vanguard. “I thought it best to bring her here for debriefing,” she said.
Zavala spoke up. “You brought. . . her . . . into the Tower without permission?” he said.
“Would you have said yes otherwise?” Ikora snapped. “Her story deserves to be told.”
Zavala frowned, but appeared to concede.
“Very well then,” the Speaker said. “Let us hear her tale.”
Cayde looked at the former hunter. He hadn’t known Eris very well - she’d been trained by his predecessor, and not him - but she’d struck him as a good hunter. A bit somber, perhaps, but still. He didn’t think that that much could’ve changed. “Go ahead,” he said. “Tell us, Guardian.”
Eris perked up a little at that. Guardian. She had been so once.
Oh, how she longed to be one again.
Eris took a deep breath. “My name,” she said, “is Eris Morn. And my tale begins with our defeat at Luna. After this, driven half-mad by grief, myself, Sai Mota, Eriana-3, and Omar Agah decided to seek revenge on the beast that had killed so many of our friends.” And then, she recounted her tale of woe, and told them of her descent into the Hellmouth.
Edit: [url=https://www.bungie.net/en/Forums/Post/218255247]Part 68[/url]
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