William and Claire both peacefully lay in bed. They smiled while staring into each other's eyes.
And then the dream ended and William awoke to find himself alone. He became angry and shouted obscenities. He realized he had woken up Tuna and looked at his dog apologetically. For a while he sat on the side of his bed with his head in his hands. Claire's death had been making it hard for him to function.
Eventually William stood up, put on his smoking jacket, and went into the kitchen.
He put out some dog food while making coffee for himself and then sat down at a table. He read news reports on his communicator while sipping his drink.
William: "What?! They voted out Governor Sterling. The Senate wasn't 'confident' in his leadership during this time of crisis... I wonder who'll replace him."
William: "I wish you spoke English dude. Do you even understand me?"
Tuna barked again.
William: "Norri understands you. Must be nice to be able to talk to animals. I'd have a few things to say to snakes."
William continued to read the news.
William: "Hmm. "Aurelia backed revolution on Rerador enters eighth month." You know, the last Android should be on Rerador... Let's see, we know the ones on Soateria, Iapra, and here are gone. RIS destroyed the one on Zarus. Corsair said Fuyoria and Etrion's were already destroyed. I assume there wasn't one on Qoter so that leaves Rerador."
Tuna barked once more.
William: "What do you say, buddy? You up for a little trip? I'm getting kind of tired of the beach now anyway."
After leaving Toliv in his starfighter, William made his way to Rerador. The journey of a few days was uncomfortable in the cramped fighter but he and his canine companion endured.
William: "Yeah I know there's a battle going on," he spoke to Tuna. "We'll just sneak in, destroy the Android, and sneak back out. How hard can it be?"
As William approached the planet, he saw the large Imperial blockade consisting of several ships. One of the ships opened a communications channel.
Imperial: "Unidentified ship, you're entering restricted space. State your intent."
William: "Uh, classified mission for the IIA."
Imperial: "What's your clearance code?"
Imperial: "That's an old code..."
The channel was silent as William became increasingly nervous. This wasn't going to work.
Imperial: "But it checks out. You may proceed."
William: "That was close," he said looking back at Tuna and smirking.
He flew down to the volcanic moon, into the war zone.
Suddenly two Imperial fighters flew in close and flanked him.
Pilot: "We'll escort you to a secure landing zone. Just follow us."
William groaned at the unneeded annoyance. But he complied and followed the pilots. They took him to a small dome that had a landing pad inside. Many other small domes were linked to it to make up Orion Camp which was constructed at the start of the revolution to be the Imperium's main headquarters.
The fighters left William when he landed but then he saw two men standing at the edge of the platform.
William: "We need to get rid of these guys," he said to Tuna as they exited the fighter and walked towards the men.
William felt they looked somewhat familiar as he approached them.
Barrows: "Finally, you're here," said the one on the left. "I'm Agent Barrows and this is Agent Khan."
William: "Agent Cruise," said William shaking their hands.
Khan: "What's with the sword, Agent Cruise? And the... Dog..."
William: "Well, uh... This guy here is for... Mine detection. And the sword is good for... Silent takedowns."
Barrows: "Mine detection? Didn't know we still used dogs for that."
He and Khan exchanged suspicious glances.
Khan: "You know I heard about another agent that used a sword. William Nantucket. He's been missing for a while."
William: "Yeah that sucks. What was he, like the number one agent? Heard he was a total badass."
The two IIA agents stared at William for a while until it clicked.
Barrows: "Holy shit it's you. You're William."
William: "Whaaaaat? No..."
Khan: "Everyone thinks you're dead. What are you doing here?"
William: "I... I'm looking for something."
Barrows: "Well that's just great! So we still don't have our third man."
William: "Who were you expecting?"
Khan: "Our assignment here is a three man job. We arrived with Agent Tarko but he was... Killed. In an incident at a local canteen. Command said they were sending a replacement."
Suddenly Barrows' communicator began buzzing. He pulled it out and looked at it.
Barrows: "It's Command. Maybe we ought to tell them that we found you."
William: "No! Don't, please. I don't wanna go back."
Barrows stared down William, considering what he should do. Finally he answered the communicator before it stopped buzzing.
Superior: "I'm afraid I have unfortunate news. Your replacement agent's ship went down several klicks from the original LZ. Apparently he's caught in a firefight right now. It might be a while before he makes it back to you."
Barrows: "We can't wait. You know how time sensitive this op is."
Superior: "Perhaps you should consider doing it with just the two of you."
Barrows looked at Khan who shrugged.
Barrows: "Alright," he said frustrated. Then he looked at William, thinking if he should tell his superior about him.
Superior: "Something else?"
Barrows: "No. Barrows out."
William sighed with relief when Barrows put away his comm.
William: "Thank you."
Barrows: "You're lucky we're busy."
Khan: "Do you think we can pull it off by ourselves?"
Barrows: "I don't know, it's risky."
William: "What are you guys trying to do?"
Barrows: "As if we'd tell you."
Khan: "Maybe he can help."
Barrows: "Him? He's a deserter. We can't trust him."
William: "Just tell me what the op is. Maybe I can do something."
Khan: "We're here to kill Fain Jerra," he said with a grim expression.
William: "Oh," William said realizing the severity of the operation. "So how do we pull that off?"
Fain Jerra, the man leading the revolution stared at a holotable that displayed scenes from ongoing battles.
Fain: "The Imperium is weakening. It won't be long before we take back Rerador. Everything is going exactly as I planned."
Folium: "You mean as I planned," said the Folium of Descartes walking behind Fain.
The Android had now been fully repaired.
Folium: "You forget that all the power and riches you have gained is because of me."
Fain: "I haven't forgotten, Folium. You know how grateful I am for your guidance."
Folium: "Hmm," Folium said pacing around the room. "I have been running calculations. I predict there will soon be an attempt on your life."
Fain: "Of course. And I am prepared."
William and Tuna followed the two IIA Agents as they led them to a ship.
Barrows: "We need to infiltrate Grusoken City, Rerador's capital. Jerra's holed up in his mansion there."
Barrows: "Jerra was able to use his revolution as a distraction to steal much of Rerador's riches. Don't forget, the guy's a scumbag."
Barrows quickly entered the small shuttle. William was behind him but stopped when he heard a loud sound coming from outside. He looked up near the top of the dome at the dark sky.
Khan: "You scared of a little thunder?"
William: "No. It's the lightning that worries me..." he said remembering the prophecy of the Scourge. He then pushed away the thoughts when he heard Barrow's voice.
Barrows: "We gotta go. The storms are bad here."
When everyone was on board, Barrows piloted the shuttle out of Orion Camp and towards Grusoken City.
Khan: "So why did you leave the agency?" Khan asked trying to make conversation.
William: "I realized that the IIA was the root of all my problems. All the people I trusted ended up betraying me. I lost my best friend and... The woman I loved. The agency took everything from me..."
Barrows: "Well that sucks... But you could've just quit like a normal person instead of running away. Lots of people were saying you defected, you know?"
William: "I didn't defect, man. I just had to get away from Earth and fast."
Khan: "So you've just been wandering around? How long are you gonna do that for?"
William: "I don't know. I still need to figure things out."
Barrows: "You said you were looking for something here."
William: "Yeah, an Android. It's really old and it's programming has gone bad which makes it dangerous. Doesn't look like anyone's doing anything about it so I came here to destroy it."
Barrows: "An Android? What does it look like?"
William: "All white, humanoid body."
Khan: "I believe we've seen something like that. It's been hanging around the Libertarians. But why go through all this trouble just for one robot?"
William: "It's kind of a long story."
Barrows: "Yeah well I don't really care about it. You can destroy all the robots you want as long as you help us take out Jerra first."
William: "You think that'll end the war?"
Khan: "It will end the Libertarians. Without their leader they will be lost."
Barrows: "And Rerador's little independence movement will be finished. We might still have Aurelia to deal with after but pushing them out will be easy with all the miners gone."
Khan: "This battle for Rerador is currently the largest active conflict of the war. I think we'll all be able to sleep better once it's finally over."
Barrows: "So buck up, kid. We're about to make history."
A short while later, they began approaching the Capital.
Barrows: "We're here," said Barrows as he started the landing process.
William looked out of the viewscreen at the city in shambles.
William: "Place looks terrible.
Khan: "Imperial forces invaded the capital last week. It's a battleground."
Barrows: "But that means everyone will be too busy to notice us."
They all stepped out of the shuttle.
Barrows: "It's dangerous where we're going. No place for the little guy," said the agent looking at Tuna.
William kneeled down and petted his dog.
William: "Stay here boy. I'll come back for you."
Leaving Tuna, the three made their way towards Fain's mansion.
And soon they arrived on the grounds.
Barrows: "Stay sharp," whispered Barrows. "Libertarians are crawling all over this place. We take them out then move onto Jerra."
Two guards were stationed at the main entrance. Barrows and Khan quickly dealt with them using an efficient amount of bullets. Barrows made a hand gesture telling William to move forward. He went to the door and kicked it open.
The soldiers inside were surprised. But they recovered and began shooting at the Imperials. Barrows and Khan dove behind some pillars and laid down covering fire for William who was going on the offensive with his sword. This brought William back to his IIA days. It felt a little good to be doing another raid like this.
When the first floor was clear, the Imperials fought their way up the stairs. Khan looked out of a window and his face fell.
Khan: "There's more coming this way."
Barrows: "Keep moving!"
Finally they reached Fain's bedroom. They found the revolutionary inside, looking shocked. There was no exchange of words, no hesitation. Barrows simply aimed his gun and blew out Fain's brains, his blood staining the white sheets.
William: "Nice shot."
Barrows: "Let's get out of here."
Khan: "We can't go back that way."
Barrows: "The window," he said turning around.
With no argument, the three of them ran at the window and crashed through it.
The landed on the ground outside on the other side of the estate. Enemy soldiers ran towards them shooting. William and Barrows held them off while Khan spoke into his communicator.
Khan: "Target is down. I repeat target is down. Requesting extraction."
Superior: "There's a shuttle waiting for you at a nearby landing field."
Barrows: "They got half the Aurelian army over here. We're pinned down!"
Superior: "There's a squad of CX-15s headed your way. They'll cover your escape."
They looked at the sky to see the bombers approaching.
Barrows: "Alright, we'll cut through the rooga fields. Let's move!"
The three of them dashed into the fields of an exotic vegetable, taking down any enemies in their way.
Finally they reached the hangar. Just as they were headed towards the shuttle, William stopped when he heard familiar barking.
Barrows: "What are you doing?!"
William: "Tuna!" he exclaimed glad to see his dog in the distance but also angry that he didn't stay put.
William: "How'd you find us? And anyway I thought I told you to stay with the ship!"
Tuna barked excitedly.
Barrows: "Come on we gotta go!"
William looked up at the ensuing battle around them. He could see a battalion of Aurelian soldiers coming their way.
William: "You'll never make it off the landing field. They'll shoot you down. Someone has to hold them off."
Barrows: "What are you talking about?"
William: "You two go on. Besides I'm not done here."
Khan: "Are you out of your mind?"
William: "It was nice meeting you two. Tell 'em back home I'm not dead."
Khan wanted to argue with William to tell him to get on the ship but Barrows pulled him away. William and Tuna went over to a nearby gun turret.
William shot the Aurelian that was using it and climbed into the chair.
William: "Let's do this."
William was actually having a little bit of fun. He was doing what he was best at.
He continued shooting at the Aurelians, covering for the IIA agents and allowing them to escape. But then suddenly a bullet flew into William's shoulder. He hadn't been paying attention to his surroundings and was shocked.
An Aurelian soldier grabbed William and threw him out of his chair.
He crawled backwards as the Aurelian followed him, ready to take the kill. Out of the corner of his eye, William saw Tuna dashing towards one of the other soldiers. He growled and clamped his jaw on his leg.
William: "Tuna no!" he shouted fearing for his dog's life.
The Aurelian holding his gun to William ignored all of that. He took his aim and pulled the trigger.
However the bullet never reached William. Instead it hit the streak of white fur that had jumped in front of the gun. The soldier took a few steps back realizing what he had done. William's eyes were wide as he stared in horror at Tuna on the ground. Then he turned to the Aurelian who pulled the trigger.
William: "YOU KILLED MY F****ING DOG!" he screamed as he threw himself at the soldier.
Before he reached him, another soldier struck William in the head with his rifle stock. A few of the Aurelians dragged William away as he continued to scream.
William: "You bastards! You killed him!"
Because he was struggling so much, a soldier hit him once again to knock him out. The Aurelians were not so cold as to not regret the killing of an innocent animal. But it was done and nothing could change it.
William later awoke to a most confusing sight. In front of him was Fain Jerra, still alive, with the Android probe standing next to him. He then realized he had been chained to a pillar and briefly struggled to break free.
William: "You... We killed you."
Fain: "You killed a clone. You think I didn't know you were coming for me? Of course I took precautions. However I did not expect them to send the legendary William Nantucket."
William looked at the Android.
William: "What's that thing doing with you?"
Fain: "Remarkable, isn't it? The Folium of Descartes. A relic from another time which I found by luck and rebuilt. But anyways, it seems your plot has failed. Rerador will soon be free from Qoter's and the Imperium's tyranny. You will have lost."
William: "I don't care about your stupid revolution. I just lost the last thing I had left to care about."
Fain: "Ah yes... I am sorry about your pet. But you needn't feel that sadness anymore. Meet my top lieutenant, Orgus Myfel. He will take care of you..."
Fain turned and looked at the former miner.
Fain: "He's all yours, Orgus."
Fain and the Android left William and Orgus alone.
Orgus: "You know I once fantasized about being a spy for the Imperium. You were quite an inspiration, you know? Everyone thought you were some great hero. But then we realized the real heroes were the ones fighting the oppressive regime that you work for. So you aren't a hero. You're actually a villain."
The truth was William had hardly listened to a word Orgus had said. All that time he was planning how to kill him and escape. Right as Orgus was done talking, William wrapped his legs around his neck, choking him. Orgus raised his gun and fired a shot that hit William's chains allowing him to break free.
William wrapped the chains around Orgus' throat and pulled him onto his back. For several moments Orgus squirmed, struggling to breath, until eventually he went limp.
William dropped the body and went to retrieve his sword and pistol. It was as if everything in his mind had been turned off and the only thing still there was just pure rage. Thoughts of all that he had lost, all that he had suffered flowed through him.
So he took it all out on the soldiers inside Fain's base. William brutally murdered everyone standing in his way. His attacks were unrelenting. He slashed and shot his way to Fain.
Finally he reached a command room where he found Fain and the Android.
Fain: "Get him!" he ordered a soldier after getting over his surprise of seeing William had escaped.
William fired at the soldier with no difficulty. He then looked at Fain and with no hesitation, threw his sword at him.
The blade flew through the air for a few seconds before impaling Fain in the chest. The Libertarian leader let out a painful groan before falling forwards.
William pulled his sword out of Fain and looked at Folium who had just been watching everything.
William: "You... You were the whole reason I came here in the first place. The last god damn Android to check off my list and give me some satisfaction. You know I destroyed all your friends, right? Now you're the last one, buddy. Why don't you make this easy?"
Folium said nothing. The Android turned its back on William and walked forwards.
Folium: "The objective has been completed."
William: "What objective?"
Folium: "Organic beings are always so violent. Why bother destroying them when they can destroy each other? To accomplish that, I orchestrated this war."
William: "You started this war?"
Folium: "Fain Jerra was desperate for power. I showed him how to obtain it. And I made sure he would lead his people to their deaths along the way."
William: "Wow... Out of all the Androids I think you might be the most evil. But what I've wondered is how it's possible for programming to get messed up in a way that causes all of this?"
Folium: "You assume that our programming became flawed. But what if it did not?"
William: "What, you're saying Xion Corsair was trying to create killing machines?"
William thought that was crazy but then realized it was also not impossible.
Folium: "The objective has been completed," Folium repeated. "The experiments are over. Operation is not required."
It wasn't looking like the Android was going to put up a fight. So William thrust his blade into the machine and pulled upwards.
William threw the robot to the side and then fell to his knees. He dropped his sword on the floor. He wasn't sure if he was imagining it but somehow the sword was feeling heavier.
But the last Corsair abomination had been destroyed and the System was a little bit safer. But now William was completely alone. He had lost everyone and everything. And now there was nothing left for him to do. Was there even a point in continuing to exist? Even the Android said it did not need to keep functioning after its objective had been completed.
William sadly walked out of the war zone, frequently hoping for something to kill him. But nothing did even as he finally returned to his starfighter. He climbed inside and prepared to leave Rerador, not sure what his next move would be.
New York City
The former governor of Earth, Christopher Sterling, walked out of the Administrative Building for the last time. He was immediately swarmed by reporters and camera crews that his guards had to push back.
Reporter 1: Mr. Sterling, is it true that you refused to send reinforcements to Rerador?"
Reporter 2: "Mr. Sterling, do you believe you would have still been in office had you responded better to the Aurelian crisis?
Reporter 3: "What are you going to do now?"
Reporter 4: "Who is going to be the new governor?"
Guard: "Everybody step back! Mr. Sterling is not making any comments at this time."
Christopher suddenly stopped walking towards his awaiting transport when he saw a familiar face in the crowd.
Guard: "Sir, you must keep moving."
Christopher: "I know you had something to do with this," he said to Percival Thane with an angry expression on his face.
Percival: "We are a democracy, Chris. And the people have spoken."
Christopher: "Perhaps after much manipulation... Well congratulations, Percy. Because now many people are mentioning your name for the position. It's what you wanted isn't it? I hope you at least know what you're doing."
Percival: "Not to worry, Chris. I always do," replied Percival with a grin.
Sorry for the delays but at least I was finally able to put out another episode. Unfortunately the frequency will be slowed down for a while... But now there are three episodes left for this season. We're getting very close to the end but at the same time the end is a bit of a ways off lol.
I'm thinking it might've been a mistake to make the Rerador stuff a background plot because it's actually some pretty complicated stuff... Maybe it should've been the main plot line of this season or a future season but idk... Guess that's what happens when you bite off more than you can chew. I will say the arc is not completely finished yet but yeah.... Also if you don't remember, Orgus was the guy from the first episode in this season. He kind of ended up joining the cause after his friend was killed. And rip Tunes did not want to kill him off but he doesn't fit into where the story is going so...