The ruined form of the Blue Steel Zero staggered the rest of the way out of the shallow crater that it had been slammed into by a very irate Gurzorath. The battered machine bled hydraulic fluids from its twisted armored body at countless locations, the right arm hanging limply, barely able to still grasp the chain-cannon in its mangled mechanical hand. With a weary groan the war machine fell to a knee, the heavy chain-cannon serving as a support. Battered, ruined visored head bowed, the form of the Blue Steel Zero seemed to beg silently: No more. Please, I have had enough. Let me rest...Please.
With a slow, heavy grinding sound, the cockpit area opened slowly, allowing its pilot; its brain, its life; its purpose, stagger from the armored coffin. The pilot stood strong, triumphant though obviously just as weary as the machine he piloted. He took his time removing the helmet as he stood, surveying the carnage that remained after the passing of the monstrous Entity known as Gurzorath.
Before the helmet was even off of his head, Tyger was bleeding profusely from a variety of head wounds, his ears, mouth, nose and even from his eyes; all thanks to the punishment from the Blue Steel's neural control system. The helmet fell to the ground with a hollow thud and Tyger placed a cigarette between his bloody lips and ignited it. He took a long, slow drag and exhaled slowly
"I told'ja, ya fuckin' bastard. We not only beat ya—but we kicked yer fuckin' ass! We powned yer little toady too! We're fuckin' 9th Squad, an' ain't NOBODY takin' us down!"
Tyger placed the cigarette back between his lips and did a slow turn to look at the battered and broken Blue Steel Zero. He took another long, slow drag from his cigarette and exhaled slowly, gray-blue smoke curling from between bloody teeth and lips as he grinned. "An' you were wrong too. Y'said I couldn't win. Well guess what motherfucker! We fuckin' won! An' I'm still here to tell the story. What do you gotta say to that?"
There was a long moment of silence as he stepped to the inert form of the Blue Steel Zero, discarding and crushing the remains of his cigarette along the way. A slow, loving touch dragged down the armored hide. "Thanks baby. We made it through. Sirkowski's gonna be furious about what I did to you... But you know what? At least we're still in one piece and she's still around ta yell at me—and there's still an Angelus for us to take care of. We'll get you fixed up good as new, and you'll be right back to kickin' ass an' takin' names."
Tyger stepped from the Blue Steel Zero and walked over to where Yisarelle had gone down. Yiska had done that, Tyger ruefully recalled. He wanted the kill, but he could not fault the esper. Yisarelle had been a thorn in their sides for a very long time, and it needed to be destroyed. As he stood in the middle of the ruined smear that was the Entity, Tyger kicked the remainder of the quickly dissipating pile of black ichor. "Fucker! I told you we were gonna kick yer ass! That's what you get for not listening to me!"
The clade was about ready to spit his utter disdain on the slain Entity, but he then recalled one of the various warnings Jama had given him in the past about such things. If Yisarelle was not totally dead, it could use his blood, as his spit would be full of it, to make a return. It could also use things such as his cigarette butt to also come after him as well. It upset Tyger a little that he could not vent, how he wanted to, but he let it go. He had plenty of other people, both living and dead, that he could spit on later.
Tyger gave a dark, sinister grin at the thought. The blood that seeped from his mouth combined with the blood that had flowed from his nose and down his face stained his teeth a gritty, animalistic gory color. Hart. That fat bastard would pay for this. He almost caused the ruination of Angelus and handed all of humanity on a silver platter to Gurzorath. And for what? Some stupid pipe-dream!
Tyger couldn't have Davies, so he would take Hart instead. He released a dark chuckle as he turned to walk towards the Blue Steel Zero, savoring the prospect of turning Hart into a bloody smear.
* * * * *
Angelus was burning.
The skyline was one of billowing clouds of smoke. A swath of destruction stretching from the ruined walls of Omega to here, the Rutger Bridge. This was were the City had made it stand. Humans, espers, clades, the Order of Enoch, the police, XSWAT, Watchmen, and regular citizens—all had stood together as one to fight the Entities. The bridge was littered with the decaying corpses of slain horrors, the rain washing the noxious soup into the ocean water below.
Jamadigni Renuka swung her spinner in a circle. She could see the wall of vehicles the defenders had made. It has been broken through in a few areas, and some of the cars were on fire, the flames visible through the smoke and haze, apparently ignoring the rain. The Entity dead were pilled in drifts before the wall, while the other side was littered with human corpses.
As she brought her spinner lower, she passed over a deep gash cut into the buildings on the defender's side of the bridge. A strip of destruction hundreds of feet long where the city seemed to have been pushed down into itself—a strange and bizarre crater around which the rest of the 9th Squad seemed to be gathered.
And other circling pass and she'd found a place to land. Jama could see no sign of Gurzorath, or any Entity for that matter, and had to wonder: Was she too late? Just in time? Or had the 9th Squad prevailed?
Shutting down the spinner, Jama slid the door over and up, her nose wrinkling at the stink of rot, blood, spent weaponry, fire, smoke, and death. It hung like a miasma over the battlefield, and not even the pouring rain could cleanse the air.
Rising, she steadied herself against the side of the car. The events of the last few hours had left her drained emotionally and physically. It seemed all a dream. Had she really created the Ordinus Seal and put in place? Had she really closed the gate in Omega? Had she really spoken to Gaia? Had she really sacrificed Director Alice Cadbury?
Taking a few steps Jama paused to take a deep breath and calm herself. She needed to be strong, to be worth of the responsibility Cadbury had given her before she'd left. She had her duty and a purpose. She needed to be strong, especially here, especially now.
Jama looked to the 9th Squad. "The Ordinus Seal is in place. The gate has been closed. And..." she paused, and swallowed, "and Director Alice Cadbury has left us."
* * * * *
It took a moment for Malachi Brogan's eyesight to return, after the blinding flash of Carpenter's death-stroke into Gurzorath's immense torso, and the subsequent blast resulting from the Entity's destruction. As a result of the follow-through from Brogan's flying leap into Gurzorath's kneecap, he had landed too close for comfort, and found himself climbing out of the crater alongside Carpenter.
Nathan seemed mostly unhurt, except that his hair had turned completely white. The blade of the Spatha Sancta was gone, and Carpenter held only its hilt. Brogan's cybernetic eyes, Carpenter noted, had taken on the all-black appearance typical of the Entity-possessed. The remains of the riot shield still strapped to Brogan's arm were barely recognizable as such—the transparent armor had been warped and melted when it impacted Gurzorath's foul hide.
Brogan and Carpenter looked at each other. There was nothing to say. They had done the impossible, but they hadn't done it alone. Carpenter's kill; Brogan's assist. Tyger and Hemelshot, Yiska and Scanner as well. Nathan would no doubt give thanks to God. Brogan might have done the same, if he and God were still talking to each other. Both would agree, however, that Alice Cadbury had been with them.
My final gift to each of you: a moment of perfect grace.
Brogan wondered, abstractly, if they would have succeeded without Cadbury's gift, but he didn't really wish to know. That was the last time they saw her. She had stood with them, holding the bridge until Hemelshot went down, then departed for X-SWAT headquarters, to give up her life for the spell which would seal off the portal in Omega Sector.
For all her talk about sacrifice, I never knew if Cadbury really understood it. We all made sacrifices—for Angelus, for our families, for each other, for her. But I never really knew what, if anything, it was costing her to be the defender of Angelus. Because of that, I wouldn't let myself trust her the way I trusted 9th squad. And now that I know I was wrong, she's gone forever. Guilt, this is Brogan. Brogan, this is Guilt. Oh, you're already old friends? No problem, then....
A lone spinner circled the site of the battle, then landed. Jamadigni Renuka emerged and gazed out at the scene of destruction, looking in the direction of 9th Squad as they began approaching her. Brogan felt momentarily elated to see her again. He raised his ruined shield and shouted "The wedding is OFF!" Then he saw the look on Jama's face. She steadied herself against the side of the car before she spoke, gathering strength to say what had to be said. "The Ordinus Seal is in place. The gate has been closed. And..." she paused, and swallowed, "and Director Alice Cadbury has left us."
Brogan approached Jama and began to speak. He could see Jama was upset, and wanted to comfort her, but with his strength, an embrace could result in broken bones—he didn't dare try that. "We're all going to miss her, Jama—none more than you. Now we owe it to her to make the most of what she's done for us...."
At that point, Brogan realized Jama's stare was fixed on his face in wide-eyed horror. What the...?
In the clear warped plastic of his ruined riot shield, Brogan caught a twisted, partial reflection of his face, and saw his own shark- black eyes for the first time since the fall of Gurzorath. "Oh, hell... this is new." Brogan turned away and closed his eyes for a moment. When he opened them again, they were fixed on the distant burning skyline, and he began walking slowly towards the parked spinner. "I'm sorry Jama... I didn't know. I'll get some new shades when we get back to HQ."
Some really big, dark ones. Gurzorath, you were a serious bastard, you know that?
* * * * *
"The wedding is OFF!" Jama had to grin at that, as drained as she was. She sagged against the spinner's hood, and tried to ignore the water soaking into her hair and dripping into her eyes. So, Gurzorath has been destroyed. His taint, his evil, removed from Angelus and the world. And as Brogan had promised, she'd been left waiting at the altar.
Steadying herself, she stood up straight. Brogan was coming her way, and the last thing she needed to to was fall down in front of him and the rest of the squad.
"We're all going to miss her, Jama—none more than you."
She wasn't aware of the rest. His face... she was used to the ruin of his face. It wasn't that bad, when you go right down to it, especially for someone who dealt regularly with Entities. But his eyes... his eyes were the dull, lifeless black of a shark's. There... there was nothing there, no life, no warmth, no soul....
Her hands rose, then fell as she struggled to control her emotions. Did I do that? was her first thought, wondering what else the Seal had affected. Then: Or was this Gurzorath?
Brogan had turned his riot shield around to look at his face. "Oh, hell... this is new. "I'm sorry Jama... I didn't know. I'll get some new shades when we get back to HQ."
"No..." she replied, stepping towards her team mate. "I should be." She hugged herself to him. "I have seen and experienced far worse. It is part of what we are and what we do. I'm sorry Brogan."
* * * * *
Hemelshot lay on the ground, in the mud and the blood sudden silence and managed, just for an instant, to relax. It's over, he thought numbly. I can get some sleep, go see Michelle and --
The screaming broke him from his thoughts, jagged and raw with pain. On his feet in an instant, Hemelshot staggered and caught himself, blinking away the black spots in his eyes. A moment later he located the source of the sound.
It was all around. The first one awoke the others from their stupor, and first a few then dozens and seemingly hundreds of voices rose in fear, agony, and insanity. The horde of gibbering victims that had passed over the bridge no longer had the fear of Entities to drive them, and so they merely wailed to the heavens in place.
Hemelshot took a step towards the closest, then stopped. He couldn't help more than handful, and the rest would die. He needed to set up triage and organize the emergency personnel—no, XSWAT is empty. He needed to get back to XSWAT and get the DES - Department of Emergency Services—back online. XSWAT would have taken charge of this in the past, but with no XSWAT and Sentinel Watch being in the formative stages, there was no central office to take charge.
Hemelshot's eyes closed for a short moment, then opened with the fires of determination. Here was a job. He needed to get to work. He had wondered what he was to do in the event he survived Gerzzie, and the good Lord provided.
"Brogan!" He'd need the computer access to override the various security lock-outs. "Can you give me root access to XSWAT from here, or do you need to be there with me?"
* * * * *
Dammit... now what do I do? Cautiously, almost timidly, Brogan's one free arm went around Jama. He managed to do so without injuring her, but not, unfortunately, without getting Entity ichor on her uniform. It didn't matter—like Jama said, she had experienced far worse. What the hell, there's a first time for everything...
....at which point Brogan heard Hemelshot's voice rise above the general post-battle chaos, driving everyone before him to bring the situation under control. "Can you give me root access to XSWAT from here, or do you need to be there with me?"
He stepped away from Jama and grinned ruefully. "Amazing, isn't it? How quickly everything gets back to normal?"
Brogan turned towards Hemelshot. "Lieutenant, we can do it from here." He did a double-take. "Damn, you're a mess! Hey, anybody got a first-aid kit? Start checking those wrecks for anything useful!" Brogan lowered his voice so only Hemelshot could hear him. "Richard, first responders are gonna be completely overwhelmed. I don't know when they'll be here."
Things could be worse. I'd look stupid with white hair, anyway.
Uh, oh. Tyger...?
* * * * *
Tyger had already gone to the Blue Steel Zero and pulled out his uniform and other toys he had stashed in the storage compartment of the mecha. He managed to actually put it all on and load himself down with every bit magazine he brought with him.
Two hip-holsters, one on either side. One carrying his Gyrojet, the other his maser. Slung over his shoulder was an assault rifle. Oh, he had his StenBlade as well, and the sheer number of magazines he was carrying caused him to look more like a grenadier than an XSWAT officer.
Tyger made his way over to Jama and Brogan, a fresh cigarette locked between his bloody teeth. He saw Brogan say something to Jama, and as the cyborg changed his stance and turned away, he saw his eyes. That caused Tyger to stop for a brief moment, a brief flashback of Bloody Bay hitting him upside the head like a fifteen pound wrench. Stunned, Tyger almost lost his cigarette. Almost.
After taking a few moments he made his way towards the small group, grinning like a madman. "Hah!" he laughed through a pall of smoke. "I told you we'd kick his ass! I fuckin' told you we were 9th Squad and that NOBODY could beat us! Who doubted me? C'mon, tell the truth now!"
The death of Gurzorath had left his mark on everyone. Carpenter's, Yiska's, and Hemelshot's hair was stark white, as if they had dipped their heads in bleach for several hours. Brogan's eyes were dark, hollow like a shark's, looking for all the world to Tyger like one of those "Black-Eyed Kids" he had seen on Bloody Bay, only all grown up. Tyger was touched a little more firmly however. Unlike the others, Tyger was covered in fur. So while those who had hair had to do with stark-white mops on the tops of their heads, Tyger looked like an albino. His eyes maintained the sinister dark blue-green, but his fur and hair, even his stripes, were gone. His entire body white as newly fallen snow.
And there was blood. Lots of it. Tyger had been bleeding out of his ears, nose, mouth, and eyes, thanks to the ruinous damage he had taken in the fighting. That punishment stained his fur and made him look far more cruel and sinister than he normally would when on the warpath. In fact the only thing that would let the others know that it was Tyger walking up to them and not some other clade was sheer amount of firepower he was carrying with him. Oh, and that cocksure swagger he seemed to have in celebration of their victory.
Tyger halted in mid step upon seeing the looks of those around him. "What? What'd I do this time? I found this at the workshop, fair and square..."
He blinked a couple of times, canting his head curiously. What do you mean? He reached around and grabbed his tail to show it off. "I look... perfectly.... aaaaAAAAWWWWW FUCK!" He dropped his tail and kicked the ground with another angry curse. "Marcy's gonna bloody KILL me! Dammit! I hope this crap washes out!"
* * * * *
Hemelshot glanced at himself before dismissing his injuries. "You're right—disaster response is gonna be a nightmare. I need to get back to HQ and see what I can do about that. Can you come with, or would you prefer to stay here at ground zero for a bit? There are probably dozens of Class One and Two's hanging around, and when I get EMS down here they're gonna want a secure landing zone."
"No problem," Brogan replied, "I can stay here awhile, provided I've got some backup. I'll be in touch if you need anything."
Brogan took stock of the rest of 9th squad. Blue Steel Zero had taken heavy damage—Tyger would be the judge of whether it was still combat-ready. Nathan no longer had the Spatha Sancta, but the sword was never a crutch for him, and he wouldn't miss a stride without it. Brogan looked at Yiska with amazement. Gurzorath had tried to squash him like a bug, yet the esper's TK force wall had held up. (Scanner stood next to Yiska, returning Brogan's level gaze, as if silently tallying up their scorecards.) And Jama... Brogan had no idea what had happened back at HQ, but Jama looked pretty shaken up. Was she up for this, or should she be back at X-SWAT HQ? Fortunately, it wasn't up to him....
Brogan spoke up so they could all hear him. "Okay, who's staying to mop up? It's open season on Entities, and we haven't taken our limit yet. Do we need to make an ammo run or anything?"
"Sir?" Jama asked, her attention focused on Hemelshot, one hand tentatively reaching for her commander. "What do you need me to do? There is still magic in the world, I'm tired but not totally helpless." She paused and glanced over to where Brogan spoke to the rest of the Squad before turning back to the Lieutenant, "Sir, before Cadbury... left, I think she made me Director." Jama held up one hand to forestall any comment, "She... she told me I was to take her place."
Hemelshot paused, then shook his head in negation. "She didn't have the authority to appoint the next Director—only the Council can do that." Then he grinned in delight and continued, "But she did have the authority to appoint her successor as Defender of Angelus." Jama could hear the capitalizations.
"I suspect that if you were to summon the spirit of Angelus now, it would bear your face." His grin turned into a proud smile. "And there is no one else I would trust with the responsibility."
"Renuka, I'd like you, Brogan, and Carpenter to stay here and clear the area for EMS—I'll head back to HQ and start organizing things from there.
"Karuk! Damn nice work on John. Think you're feeling up to getting in touch with the hivemind? I'd like to coordinate with them, so if you could head over that-away I'll be in touch as soon as I can figure out what's going on."
"Tyger, you... um. Shit. You look worse than when we were in Omega. I'd like you to stick around here and help secure the area. Head back to HQ and pick up another suit if you need it—just let me know and I'll get you the clearances.
* * * * *
Dead. Yiska was dead. Several times he died tonight, each death seemed worse than the one before it. Images of family and friends, the deep sadness for those who are left behind. In the void of his thoughts Yiska passes through time remembering those who fell in battle today, making sure their sacrifice would never be forgotten.
The familiarity of a barked order brought Yiska back from the depths of his thoughts. "Yes, sir," came the automatic reply before Yiska had a chance to consider what was being asked of him, "We-- They're still in mourning for those lost on the field today sir. In addition, they're still caring for the refugees in Phi sector. I'm not sure how much help they can provide, we've lost two-thirds of our strongest espers in this fight."
Hemelshot nods. "I know they're hurting, the city owes them a debt and I'll see what I can do to repay it. They've sacrificed a lot, and for now all I ask is that they take care of themselves—I'm going to get DES online and I'd like to someone I trust to let me know what they need and what aid they might be able to give others." He pauses and looks Karuk in the eye. "They also need to know that the city won't turn its back on them—again—and if I have anything to say about it their part in saving the city will be all over the newsies. If they retreat and isolate themselves, things won't get better for a long time—if they're public in disaster relief it'll go a long way towards normalizing relations. I'd like you to start by going and organizing their own relief efforts and preparing them to integrate with the rest of the city. Think you can do it?"
"We are keenly aware of these things, Richard. The one you call Yisk- I mean I'm more than willing to head up relief teams and efforts. It'll be a nice change from killing stuff."
The mind link is both a fascinating and horrifying experience at the same time. As Yiska coordinated the esper attack at the wall, he keenly experienced each and every death that occurred at the wall. He died eight times tonight, for eight was the number of espers who gave their lives for the defense of this ill-begotten city. Eight brave souls who died fighting those who hate them to save those who hate them. Irony with the highest cost.
Yiska was aware of Jade and several other espers who were still on this side of the void. Their sanity forever shattered, their bodies broken, their existence is only anguish and pain. He (or is it Jade?) stands up and walks towards a man with white hair. He turns to face the stranger and realizes that Yiska is seeing himself through Jade's eyes. He reaches out to touch his white hair and the response from the neurons in his fingers pulls his identity back into himself.
The world re-orientates itself and Yiska is looking down at Jade lying broken on a makeshift palette, who herself has the same stark white hair. He turns to Scanner and simply states, "I died tonight."
* * * * *
Carpenter knelt in the crater, the last few moments still replaying with crystal clarity in his mind.
Him leaping over the fallen form of Gurzorath, sword ready to plunge down on its chest, feeling the moment of pure grace promised by Cadbury, but also the presence of a Heavenly Host guiding his strike.
His ears ringing with heavenly music, his chest almost bursting from the explosion of pure joy and exultation pouring out of his soul. His lips forming the words, "I am but an instrument of your Will, Lord."
The sword plunging through, the music replaced by the keening scream of a dying Entity, the putrid ichors flowing around him as he'd sunk into the decomposing mass that had moments previously been their most hated enemy.
For a second, he'd basked in the feeling of peace that emanated from the sword, the satisfaction of a task completed, a quest achieved. But then, it had all gone wrong. Gurzorath's last attack, his death-curse, had oozed out, seeking to suck the life from those who had caused its downfall.
Without hesitation, Carpenter had concentrated, using every ounce of will to divert the wave of evil from encompassing his teammates and himself. The sword had absorbed the attack, acting like a fuse keeping the killing voltage from harming the system it protected.
The holy blade had begun to pit and flake, as if bathed in acid. Unable to keep all of Gurzorath's curse from touching those around him, he'd still managed to minimize its effect, at the cost of the sword's destruction.
Leaving Carpenter there in the crater, the hilt of the shattered sword still in the grip of his blackened scorched hands. He felt shattered too, as if he would fall to pieces himself if he dared move. His eyes were blinded by tears of blood, his ears deaf to any other sounds other than the pounding of his stuttering heart. He knew the numbness he felt was just the calm before the onrush of killing pain from the various wounds that covered him.
In spite of all of this, he still managed to smile through cracked lips and utter, "Thanks be to God." before darkness rushed to meet him...
* * * * *
Tyger threw his little tantrum for a few moments longer, ignoring Hemelshot completely. However there was something Jama said that had caught his attention and he turned to the Squad's Sorceress. "Woah, woah, hold on a second there, what in the hell do you mean that Cadbury's gone? She can't be. She's the frikkin' Director. And she's one of those hamtaros, right? Only really big and a lot stronger... right? I mean... hamtaros are part of everything, and they don't just go away or die... right?"
Tyger stepped over to Jama and gripped her shoulders quite roughly and shook her, his voice a couple of octaves higher as he grew more hysterical, his eyes pleading with her, tears welling at their edges as he found it more difficult to control his emotions. "Cadbury's a fuckin' hantu, She can't be dead! Tell me she's not dead god-dammit!"
Her eyes wide with fright, Jama pushed back against Tyger to no avail. "Tyger! Stop! You're hurting me! The spell needed a sacrifice and she was the one!"
Tyger blinked and staggered back as if someone had hit him in the face. "No. She can't. She promised...." he murmured, his voice soft.
"They're all gone, Tyger," Jama said softly as she hugged herself, her gazed fixed on her boots. "Not just Cadbury, but all of them. I sealed them all away."
"She fucking promised god-dammit!" Tyger shouted his curse towards the weeping heavens and fell to his knees, shoulders heaving. His tears on the shattered ground were hidden, thanks to the falling rain, but his heaving shoulders and muffled voice betrayed his emotions "I hate her. She lied to me. She promised she would be there. Mom... why did you have to go?"
Feeling utterly helpless, Jama could only stand there, knowing nothing she could do could assuage the clade's grief... or her own.
Hemelshot looked to Carpenter to step to Tyger and comfort him, to say the right things. A moment passed before he realized Carpenter wasn't there. A moment of panic, then the realization it was up to him to hold his team together.
Tyger felt a hand on his shoulder, and heard Hemelshot, kneeling in the mud beside him. "I know, Tyger, I'll miss her too. She knew what she was doing and while she didn't want to leave, to break her word, she chose to show her love for us all. She gave her life so that we might live, and there is no greater love. Never forget that.
"And we need to continue her gift, live our lives to the fullest and heal the city. We need to make it worthy of her memory and make it a place of love, of beauty and courage, and worthy of the honor she has entrusted to us. It's our job, and I rather look forward to making her Angelus live on.
"It hurts, though, and all I can say is, 'this too, shall pass.'" The hand tightened for a moment, then released as Hemelshot stands. "We need to find Carpenter and make sure he's alright. He went that-away just before Gerzzie went boom, so let's see what trouble he's got himself into."
Brogan turned to look back towards the crater. "Carpenter? I saw him just a minute ago. He was still in one piece... I thought he was... you know... praying, or something. Figured he'd be along when he finished." Realizing his mistake, Brogan turned to the sky and raised two upturned hands in supplication to anyone who might still listen. I am such a God-forsaken idiot! Then he shook his head and began trotting quickly back towards the crater.
* * * * *
Jama raised her face to the heavens and let the rain wash over it, hiding the tears and the pain. She had been willing to give her life to see Angelus and the world saved—and now she understood what such a decision would cost. It seemed so simple at the time, so noble, so... elegant. One death—her death and the world was a better place. But nothing was ever so easy. Nothing came without a cost, and as a sorceress she knew full well the dangers of things that were "too good to be true." Here, in this place, at this time, she was witnessing first hand the price of victory, the true cost of Alice Cadbury's struggle, the meaning of life and death.
Spreading her arms wide, Jama opened her eyes and looked unblinking into the falling rain. Hemelshot wanted to rebuild Angleus into something worthy of Cadbury's legacy. She was the Defender of Angelus, appointed to her task by the only one who could grant such a title. She had a duty, to Cadbury, to the 9th Squad, to XSWAT, to Angelus... and to the Earth. She had asked Gaia for the power to wash the stain of Entities from the world... and she would start by doing so.
Quietly, with soft words and gentle requests, Jama called to the spirits of the air. To slacken the storm, to abate their fury, to ease the winds, to make it possible for the needs of the wounded and the trapped to be attended to. To allow fires to be fought, wreckage cleared, Entities to be tracked, and the rebuilding to begin.
The Defender of Angelus spoke to the sky above.
And the sky listened.
To see you once again
Angels from above are telling me to pray
Stars in the sky
Are showing us the way
Never let go of your hope
Can't justify the pain
Don't lose the love that
Lights up all the stars
Lay me down
I pray your soul to keep
Where love can be found
The Forbidden Pensee