The Rest of the Story https://docs.google.com/document/d/15ew1g89oxjEj5mZRFvv94Ht2Td6lVWkc-Lk7nwplUgg/edit You can use the tag as well, but not all chapters are on the forums. [b]Chapter 7[/b] Molten metal dripped from the body of the skiff, its front half completely gone. Flames ripped through the air, filling the dome with a choking smoke. An old captain, brutally injured, was lifted up by 3 vandals. “Faster, they will be back soon.” He growled, as the blue shine of the ghosts and the red of the flames clashed against his armor. The vandals scuttled out of the building with Noxis. The second skiff began to take off as two titans rose from the heat. Zahir watched through the mess of the crashed skiff as the other shot off into the reaches of the Reef. Zahir kept his gaze on the tiny windows of twisted sheet metal around the skiff. He heard Bronze surface beside him. “That was tough. Get some rest.” He said to the rookie titan. “Me, tired? No, I feel like a million bucks!” Bronze thrust her arms in the air excitedly. “Alright, then. Go home. I’m going to examine the site.” “Then I will. That sounds boring as hell, just like you.” Bronze quipped, knocking Zahir’s helmet with her fist before walking off. Zahir, to her surprise, ignored her and began to walk toward the gas tanks. - “Noxis. That could have ended poorly.” Tivik’s voice scrambled into Noxis’ helmet as the captain was stripped of his armor. “I am aware, but all that matters is that the harvest went undistracted, and I am still alive.” Noxis’ body began to be wrapped in bandages, covering the burn marks on his dark purple skin. A healing medicine seeped onto his body. “Hah!” I would have no need for these bandages if we had the Traveler. Noxis scoffed, looking down at his wrapped torso. “You sacrificed the lives of an entire skiff crew to hold off that guardian.” “THOSE guardians.” The captain retorted, as he loaded his projection rifles into a case. He grabbed his burnt, torn cloak from his side and handed it to a vandal, who nodded and headed away. “Do you value the lives of 12 vandals over mine? We could have killed that guardian, had he not learned of our use of the Hive’s poison.” “They must have found out the day Darvahk died.” Tivik considered woefully. “Bah! Then it is your fault I was defeated, Tivik.” Noxis slammed a claw onto the bench he sat on. The echoes of his attack were lost in the rumblings of the travelling skiff. “We were not expecting an attack that day. Besides, you have wronged me as well. You promised me you would not waste lives!” “These Eliksni are mere contractors. They have little value. We can simply request more from House Dusk.” “That is true, but remember, I fight for the nobility of our kind. Would an Eliksni throw away the lives of his comrades?” “Our only goal is the reclamation of the Traveler! We are fighting Guardians. The death of many Eliksni is inevitable in our struggle.” Tivik fell silent, thinking. “Tivik, our line of work is a risk to everyone. I realize there may have been potential in that skiff’s crew, but I am the entire reason we launched our operation. You must trust me.” “...Understood.” “I will arrange a meeting with that rat Gourn. We will require more arms. I would recommend taking Spekris and Miskor. We cannot risk you.” Noxis eyed the case in front of him. “I will see you aboard the ketch.” Tivik closed the communications, leaving Noxis alone with his thoughts. He sat, his back leaned against the wall, as his skiff broke the asteroid field and rocketed into the stars. - “They do use Hive gas, but we found something more troubling than that.” Zahir explained, sitting at his desk. “The old captain that Bronze and I encountered was using Cabal projection rifles. That either means that they steal these arms, or they’re making deals.” “How hard was this captain to fight against?” Eltanin asked, leaning forward in her seat. “Not nearly as hard as the marauder, with Bronze helping. He managed to escape, however.” Eltanin looked troubled. “Tomorrow’s usually not a busy day, so I’ll look into any Cabal trade with the Fallen.” Eltanin glanced at a calendar on the wall. She began to speak again, by was interrupted by an unattentive Zahir. “Great. I’ll go out as soon as you find something.” Eltanin shifted around uncomfortably. “Zahir, you seem different.” She blurted, looking down at her lap. “Do I?” He had already begun to stand up. “I mean, all you really talk about is all of this… Tivik business.” She waved her hand around the numerous data reports pinned and taped to the walls of Zahir’s room. “That true, but I have to stop this. Slowly but surely, he’ll keep on killing guardians.” “I know, but don’t do anything rash, please. You need to take care of yourself.” “I’m going to have to be rash.” Zahir began to walk out. “I’m making dinner. Want anything in particular?” “Zahir… you do know it’s Pasta Friday, right?” “It’s Friday?” Zahir clutched the side of his head. “Of course… yes, it is Friday. Sorry I asked.” He disappeared behind the door. Eltanin looked down at her lap again. Her face was wrought with regret and fear. She looked over Zahir’s workspace again. In only a week, he had produced and poured over several hundred documents, often complaining that barely anything came of his findings. She wondered why such a potent force was able to kick start its operation so quickly and silently. She wondered what Zahir would do about it. - “Damn this Walker.” The warlock muttered, floating above a missed cannon shot. The explosion decimated the Nessus plant life behind him as he descended. He braced himself for the fire of the walker’s point defense gun. As he stumbled back from the arc rounds piercing his body, he saw the cannon ready another shot. Unable to get away, he was disintegrated by the following shell. As he awoke, he noticed his vision was nearly covered in black. How long had he been dead? The light was strong in this area. Then he remembered. He recalled spotting several gas tanks on the side of the walker. Of course. These Fallen were weaponizing Hive poison. He did not run into the Hive often, but any lightbearer knew the lethality that wizards brought to the field. Another shot ripped through the smoke. It pushed him into the ground, exploding and destroying his shields. He clutched his chest in agony as the laser of the tank’s barrel glared at him once more. He was ready. With his remaining strength, he focused arc energy in his hand and launched it in front of him, colliding with the missile a few meters in front of him. He had bought just enough time for his ghost to heal the wound on his chest. He stood up and shot at the weakened front left leg of the walker with a hand cannon, downing the machine. The gas stopped rising, cut off from its source. Before he could fire into the core, a dreg leapt down from above and onto the head, carrying a shrapnel launcher. It hissed in anger, rapidly firing solar pellets into the warlock. “I see. You’re the owner of this walker.” The warlock powered through another shrapnel launcher shot that tore his robes to grab the dreg by its neck. “I don’t want to waste any more time then I have to, so call your walker off before it blows you to pieces.” He demanded. The dreg noticed that the recovered walker’s barrel was pointed at the warlock, and, consequently, himself. He hurriedly clutched a device on his hip, and the walker powered down with a whine. “I’ll get straight to the point. You.” He pointed at the dreg with his free hand. “Work for Tivik?” The warlock asked, his grip still tight. The dreg slowly shook its head. “The gas.” He pointed to the tanks. “Tivik’s?” The Fallen nodded. “I see.” He began to lower the dreg, who seemed relieved. But before the Eliksni met the ground, he was killed by the channeling of arc energy through the warlock’s arm.