Phase 12 - Summon the Angel

Mobile Suit Gundam SEED ETERNITY

Note: I changed the name of the Raigo Gundam's Speculum Striker pack to Arrowhead. I think the Raigo deserves a little more dignity than can be accorded by naming it after the thing the gynecologist uses to look inside your hooha.

Phase 12 - Summon the Angel

April 28th, CE 77 - Resistance space fortress Terminal, Debris Belt, orbit of Earth

"Terminal can still move without a problem," said Oshida as orders and information flew through Terminal's control room, "but we would just be delaying the inevitable if all we did was run away. We have to hand their military force a defeat to prevent them from following us first."

On the screen, Meyrin Hawke frowned from the Minerva's bridge. "If we stand and fight we'll be a stationary target. They have our location data; they could always turn the Requiem on us."

Oshida smirked. "If they wanted to use the Requiem they wouldn't have sent a fleet. They must want to capture us."

"I suppose," Meyrin said skeptically. "We're almost done with our repairs. Hopefully the enemy won't notice that we've cut loose, and we'll be able to take them by surprise."

"Hopefully." He glanced over at the tactical map. "What's the Guevara doing?! It's out too far in front! Pull it back!"

"Is this some kind of joke?"

Standing on the gantry in front of a lone mobile suit with Trojan in tow, Emily turned back towards him and all he could do was shrug.

"It was all that was left that had a Natural-use OS, unless you want to pilot a Mistral or something," he defended. Emily turned back with a sigh towards the waiting Slaughter Dagger and hopped into the cockpit. He didn't have that air of smug self-satisfaction about him, so perhaps he was being sincere. "I don't get why you're so touchy about that nickname, though."

Emily glanced back up at him. "I'll tell you later. Get to your own machine, I'm going out." The hatch swung shut and Trojan took off down the gantry as Emily put on her helmet and fastened the seals. Selene's face appeared on one of the auxiliary monitors a moment later.

"We've got another thirty minutes' worth of adjustments to make," she said. "I'll let you know as soon as we're done. Hold out until then."

"Right." The screen went dark and Emily sat back as the gates opened. "This is Emily, I'm launching."

There was no catapult available, so Emily simply marched the Dagger forward and pushed off into space. The enemy fleet was gathering up ahead, and the handful of Resistance ships surrounding Terminal were already in position, as mobile suits streamed out onto what would soon be the battlefield.

Emily swallowed hard and waited for the enemy to open fire.

The Destiny and Gaia Gundams rocketed out into space with Riika's dark blue Blaze ZAKU Phantom between them. In the Destiny's cockpit, Shinn scanned his eyes over the approaching enemy Windams in the standard white and blue of the Space Force.

"Stella, use the space junk to your advantage," he said. "Set up with the sniper rifle and pick off as many of them as you can."

"Okay." The Gaia peeled off and headed for the wreckage of a large satellite, and Riika's ZAKU fell in besides the Destiny.

"That's the Extended you left for?" Riika began, and Shinn nodded.

"She wanted me to protect her."

"Then shouldn't you go back with her, so you can protect her?"

Shinn smirked. "I didn't say she needed it. They're moving in, break formation!"

The two mobile suits lunged apart as a squad of Windams opened fire with their beam rifles. Shinn glanced over at Riika as she took cover behind her shields, and then leveled off his own rifle to return fire. The Windams split up only for another beam blast to come tearing out of space and plow through one enemy's cockpit, blowing it apart in a dazzling fireball.

Shinn smiled. "See? Cover me, I'm going in close!"

"Those things again!" snarled Athrun as the Infinite Justice roared into battle. A green GuAIZ rushed in at its side, and in the cockpit Viveka glanced up towards the Gundam.

"What things?"

"Mobile suits that showed up at Arnhelm. They have lightwave barriers. And " Athrun trailed off, as the pressure washed over him. "And that clone...!"

Viveka turned her eye towards the enemy and promptly rammed her GuAIZ into the Justice, driving both mobile suits to the left just as a wave of beam fire coursed through the battlefield. "Pay attention, dammit! I can't do all the fighting in this old GuAIZ!"

Athrun shook his head and fixed his attention on the charging Raigo. "Hang back and give me fire support. Call in Romero's team." He rocketed ahead and switched his beam rifle to his left hand, giving him room to draw a beam saber with his right. "One Kira is enough."

Up ahead, inside the Arrowhead Raigo Gundam, ND HE faltered as the pressure hit his mind. That man was there again, and he saw that blue-haired boy and that green robot bird and all those flower petals...

He clenched his fists around the Raigo's controls. "Get out of my head!" The Raigo swapped its rifle for a saber and charged, and with a crash the two mobile suits came slamming together. "Hyperion team, get around him!"

The Hyperion Gs swept in, beam machineguns at the ready, and Athrun ground his teeth. "Perfect!"

With a flash of thruster exhaust, the Justice lunged up just in time for the GuAIZ to pummel them all with beam rifle blasts, supported by a half dozen more mobile suits. Athrun seized his chance, rushed forward, and tore the first Hyperion G's rifle in two with a quick saber hack. The Hyperion G backed away and readied its lightwave barrier, as the other three opened fire and forced the Justice on the defensive.

Athrun whirled around to parry a saber blow from the Raigo and darted away again as it pressed the attack. He scanned the battlefield again and caught sight of the Hyperions, fixing his eyes on the one he had just deprived of its rifle. "I'll get rid of you four first, and then..."

The Gunner ZAKU landed hard on a piece of debris, and with a shout Auel swung up his cannon and opened fire and a moment later, the blast plowed through a charging Windam and tore it to pieces. Auel smirked with satisfaction but then he yelped in surprise and jammed back the controls as three more Windams emerged from the smoke cloud, beam rifles blazing.

Instead, another Windam with a blue Aile Striker on its back rushed down into the fray and slammed the leading Windam aside with a hard kick to the chest. The blue Windam darted back, leveled off its rifle, and finished off its adversary with a salvo through the cockpit.

"Auel," Hayden started, even as he pulled back in front of the two remaining Windams, "enemy second wave! Focus on them!"

"Yeah, yeah," grunted Auel, and he searched the black, choked skies for a target but an instant later he yanked back the controls again and abandoned his little piece of wreckage as another Windam lunged up from beneath it, beam rifle drawn. "Where the ?!"

He fell silent as a red beam from behind and above lanced out of nowhere, plowed through the Windam's cockpit, and blew it apart. Auel grunted under the shockwave and blinked in surprise as something white and red blasted by his field of vision.

"The fuck is that the Chaos?!"

"Proto Chaos," corrected the voice of Sting Oakley, and a moment later his Duel Dagger, bulked up with the heavy Fortrestra armor, dropped in next to Auel's ZAKU. "Prototype mobile armor version of the Chaos. Pretty sweet." The Duel Dagger darted to the side, swung up its beam rifle, and opened fire in time to ward off another oncoming enemy. "Don't just sit there waiting for someone to put a dick in your mouth, Auel, we have a job to do!"

"What fuck you, Sting!"

Hayden's Windam backed in between them both. "Not the time for that, guys. Incoming!"

"The DOM's got a Natural-use OS loaded, so I'll be okay," Trojan said as his green DOM Trooper cruised into battle, toting the Green Frame's abandoned custom beam rifle, "and you'll probably kick ass regardless."

Emily arched an eyebrow. "Thanks for the vote of confidence." She glanced over to the right. "Lily?"

An angry wail responded. "Nobody said this thing was gonna be white!" Sure enough, a bone-white mobile suit that, as Emily recalled, was named the Vent Savior dropped into formation in its mobile armor mode next to her Slaughter Dagger. "I thought the Savior was supposed to be red! You know, like blood! Blood Knight! This is so not cool."

Emily snapped her eyes back towards the front, just in time to take a beam rifle blast to the shield. Trojan slid in front of her and fired back with his rifle; Lily seized the chance to squeeze off a salvo of plasma cannon shots, and one of them ripped through the Windam up in front and tore it apart in a blaze of fire.

"I think you'll be okay," Emily said with a sigh. Two more Windams darted out from behind a piece of wreckage and pounded the three mobile suits with rifle fire, only for Trojan to whirl up into their ranks and tear one of them in two with his own rifle's saber blades. The second backed away and raised its rifle but the Slaughter Dagger was there to kick it in the torso and then spear it through the chest on a beam rifle blast.

"There's more " started Trojan.

"Lily, you go ahead and soften them up. You've got better mobility. Trojan, this machine is inferior to the Dom, so stick with me."


Emily cast a quick, nervous glance over her shoulder, at the silent, oblong shape of Terminal behind her.

Don't take too long in there, Selene...

The GOUF Ignited was a fine machine, reflected Rau Le Creuset as he rode one into battle. Those heat rods were interesting weapons, and the superior handling and maneuverability meant undoubtedly that this thing was no ZAKU.

A Windam rose up from the wreckage, beam rifle blazing; Rau seized his chance and sent the left-hand heat rod lancing towards it. It wrapped around the Windam's arm, and Rau yanked the trapped machine closer and with a quick slash, he chopped the Windam in two and stormed along on his way.

Beams from behind flashed around the GOUF and towards another approaching Windam. One of them hit home, blowing off the Windam's head at the shoulders, and then a white Murasame dropped down from nowhere to slash off its head and left arm with a beam saber.

Rau frowned. "Glittering Star J" was making the same mistake Kira made and so Rau moved his GOUF in to slash the disabled Windam in half. Instantly, Jean Carrey's disapproving face appeared on one of the GOUF's monitors.

"Why did you do that?! He was disabled!"

"But not destroyed," Rau shot back. The two mobile suits darted apart as a beam volley coursed through the battlefield. "Try to leave your naiveté behind, Mr. Carrey. This is a war zone."

"I hardly think it naïve to note that killing people just breeds more conflict."

The GOUF jinked to the side to avoid another Windam's beam rifle blast, and then charged forward to slash its rifle in two. The Windam backed away, supported by its three compatriots and forcing the GOUF on the defensive but not before Rau ignited the left-hand heat rod and ripped it clear through the Windam's torso to destroy it.

Rau glanced distastefully up at Carrey's GOUF. "Then you still have much to learn."

Battleship Minerva

"Before we run the engine we're going to have to do a trial run," Abbey warned as the Minerva's bridge sank down to combat status. Meyrin adjusted her cap and studied the tactical map on the auxiliary screen. The Alliance fleet's warships had settled for blasting apart the largest bits of debris, sending the mobile suits through the cracks, and relying on them to punch open holes in the enemy's defense. Oshida could always launch the Alexandria directly into their faces because probably nobody was expecting that but one ship was not going to turn the tide. They would need the Vedlow Fleet for that, and Vedlow's ETA was still up in the air.

"A trial run would draw attention," Meyrin grumbled. "Tell Abes to run a second check of the engine. If there are any problems, he'll have to catch them. We can't afford to start the engines yet; not when we haven't finished repairs to the Tristans and Isolde."

Abbey settled into the seat at her station. "We haven't tested those out either. It won't do us any good to bust e and charge into the fight, only for our weapons to malfunction."

"Then Abes and his crew will have to fix them right the first time," Meyrin answered. "I'll leave it to him. Roxy, where are our mobile suits?"

"All somewhere in that melee. I can't pick them out myself."

Meyrin glanced back at the battle, and the bursts of fire bubbling up around Terminal.

Don't any of you get killed out there...

Sparks flew as the Justice and Raigo clashed, saber to saber. Athrun saw a chance and surged forward to throw the Raigo back but before the white Gundam could respond, the Justice darted to the side, saber blazing, and ran it through the rifle of a second Hyperion G. He scanned the skies for the other two

"Wait, that's only two of them! Where ?!"

He jerked back the controls and snapped his attention over his shoulder, where he caught sight of an M1 Astray. It swung up its rifle and opened fire, but the blasts landed harmlessly against a Hyperion G's lightwave barrier just in time for Viveka's GuAIZ to lunge out of nowhere and tear off the Hyperion's right arm with its beam claws.

"Viveka! Don't push too hard, the GuAIZ can't keep up!" He whipped back around to face the oncoming Raigo and deflected another saber strike. "Persistent little...!"

One of the Hyperion Gs whirled in from behind, beam machinegun coming up to finish the fight. Athrun twirled the Justice around, ignited one of the leg-mounted beam blades, and slashed the Hyperion G's rifle in two and then went back on the defensive as the remaining mobile suits opened fire again.

"Dammit, Viveka, where are you?! The GuAIZ is too old for that!" One of the Hyperion Gs came down from above with a beam saber in its hand. "What the ?!" The Justice rocked as the Hyperion brought down its saber, and Athrun's eyes went wide as the Raigo lunged up from behind with its own saber ready.

"Now I'll finish this for good!" ND HE screamed

"Like hell!"

The GuAIZ came barreling out of nowhere to slam the Raigo aside with its shoulder but a moment later, another Hyperion G was there with its beam cannon ready. Viveka jammed the controls to the side, but not far enough. The Hyperion opened fire and the GuAIZ's left arm and left leg vanished in the blast.

"Viveka!" Athrun cried

Viveka's voice came cackling through the speaker as the Hyperion closed in for the kill, beam saber lit. "I'm not done yet!"

Instead, the smoke blasted apart and the maimed GuAIZ leveled off its rifle and drilled a blast straight through the Hyperion's cockpit. The two mobile suits were engulfed in a thundering explosion, and Athrun felt his heart skip a beat as the maimed, blackened GuAIZ went sailing out of the flames, into the arms of one of Terminal's mobile suits.

"You, take her back to base!" Athrun shouted, and then whirled around to face the Raigo's furious attack. "Viveka, answer me, are you alright?!"

"K-Kinda," she grunted, and Athrun ground his teeth at the sight of blood drifting around her in the GuAIZ's battered cockpit. "Some shrapnel got me. It's not gonna kill me, but you're on your own now, Zala."

Athrun turned his eyes back towards the charging Raigo. "That's how I work best."

"Where the hell is that fleet?!" Sting screamed, as the Duel Dagger twisted around enemy fire and pounded off a salvo of its own shoulder cannon shells. The projectiles pounded against the shields of a Windam squad up ahead, but a Doppelhorn Windam among their ranks lunged up over the smoke and answered with a blast of its own to throw the Duel Dagger back. "Dammit! This thing's too slow!"

One of the Windams lanced up from below, beam saber held high, and claimed the Dagger's right arm at the elbow. Sting jetted backwards and let loose a cloud of missiles in the Windam's face to blow it apart only for another Windam to streak down from above and slice off the Dagger's left leg at the knee with its saber.

"Oakley! Three o'clock!" Courtney's voice screamed. Sting shot his eyes to the right, just as another Windam opened fire and blew off what was left of the Dagger's right arm.

"Goddammit!" Two more Windams appeared, rifles leveled off, and the three Windams took aim. "I don't think so !"

The Windams opened fire, and Sting smashed his hand down on one of the switches. With a burst of steam, the Duel Dagger's Fortrestra armor broke off in a cloud around the Dagger itself and Sting jammed back the controls just as the Windams' beams sliced through the armor pieces and blew them apart.

With a scream, Sting charged out of the smoke and drove his saber into the leading Windam's cockpit. The remaining two darted to the sides and one of them hurled a Stiletto anti-armor penetrator down towards him. Sting's eyes went wide and he pulled back the control stick hard the penetrator jammed itself into the Dagger's left shoulder and detonated, blowing off the arm, and the world went dark for Sting Oakley.

A red beam coursed through the battlefield and blew one of the Windams apart, followed by the darting gunbarrels of the Proto Chaos to pick off the other, and Auel's Gunner ZAKU landed next to the mutilated Dagger. "Sting, damn you, if you die in there I'll kick your ass!" The ZAKU turned its monoeye towards another Windam team on the approach, and it reared back and kicked the Dagger in the other direction. "Hayden! Get Sting back to Terminal!"

"Right!" answered Hayden, and his Aile Windam dropped in to catch the damaged machine and took off towards the fortress.

"Don't let your anger cloud your judgment, Neider," Courtney warned. "These men were well-trained."

Auel snarled in fury as he watched the enemies open fire. "Fuckers don't know what they're dealing with!"

With an ear-splitting shriek, the Destiny plunged its anti-ship sword through one of the Windams and let it explode in a fiery flash. Three more lined up for a beam rifle barrage, with a Buster Dagger between them; Shinn darted up above, blinding them all with a flurry of afterimages, and before either could react he stormed into the center of their formation and slashed the right-hand Windam in half. The Buster Dagger jetted backward and pounded the Destiny with a point-blank gunlauncher blast to throw the Gundam back; the Windams followed it up with a barrage of beam rifle blasts that sliced through the afterimages.

Shinn glanced over his shoulder. "Riika, now!"

A tower of fire rose up from behind one of the ruins and a hail of missiles came streaking down out of the black sky, blowing one of the Windams apart. The Buster Dagger jerked to the side, switched its rifle, and fired the high energy cannon into the wreckage but too late, as the Destiny rushed in to chop it in half. Riika's ZAKU Phantom roared out of hiding and pounded the two Windams' shields with beam blasts just in time for another shot to come streaking out of nowhere and slam through the right-hand Windam's cockpit. And as that one exploded, Shinn shot down upon the last and ripped it in half with his sword.

"Stella's a pretty good shot," breathed Riika, while her ZAKU searched the battlefield. "Shinn, Doppelhorns, up there!"

"I see them. You have any missiles left?"

"One round per tube. You want me to hide again?"

Up ahead, a quartet of Doppelhorn Windams opened fire and blasted the surrounding wreckage to bits. Shinn threw himself in between the Windams and Riika, deflecting wreckage and shells with his beam shield but that was all the chance needed for a quartet of Buster Daggers and a quartet of standard Windams to leap out from their own hiding places and rocket over the two mobile suits' heads. And an instant later, Shinn felt his heart stop as an entire Euclid mobile armor wrenched itself from the debris and rocketed after them.

"What the hell?!" Riika cried. "How did they ?!"

"Incoming!" Shinn shouted, and with a crash he slammed the ZAKU back behind another piece of debris and took off, while the Windams showered him with beam and artillery fire. "Shit! Terminal, heads up, you've got eight mobile suits and a Euclid on approach!"

One of the operators' eyes went wide in disbelief. "They got past you?!"

"I guess my godlike skills are getting rusty." Shinn looked frantically for an opening in the enemy lines. "Riika, I've got to take out that Euclid, can you handle these guys?"

Missiles and shells pounded into the ZAKU's shields. "Does it look like I can handle these guys?!"

Shinn ground his teeth and charged. Don't have time for this bullshit!

"That pressure," Rau started, and his GOUF stopped short with its beam sword blazing, its monoeye darting back and forth. "Someone's coming."

Nearby, Carrey's Murasame ducked around a Windam's desperate fire and promptly beheaded it with its saber. "What are you talking about "

Carrey fell silent as a wave of beam fire slashed through space around him and forced him on the defensive. Rau sent his GOUF into a steep dive and then yanked back on the controls as a mobile suit shot by.

"Is that ?!" started Carrey.

A lone Windam with an orange backpack whipped around to face the GOUF and Murasame, and Rau Le Creuset scowled as the gunbarrels slammed down onto the mobile suit and he recognized the emblem and pressure before him.

"The Moonlight Mad Dog, Morgan Chevalier."

Inside the Windam, Morgan sized up his opponents the great Glittering Star J and a GOUF, from which was emanating the telltale pressure of a Newtype. Morgan winced at the feeling and tried to gauge which one was the greater threat but they denied him the opportunity, with the Murasame snapping up its beam rifle to open fire. He eagerly took off around the blasts and launched his gunbarrels again. "Well, I guess you're first, Mr. Carrey. Disable this!"

Two of the gunbarrels closed in and forced Carrey on the defensive but Rau charged forward, beam sword blazing, and wove his way through fire from the other two gunbarrels. Morgan swapped out his rifle for a saber and swung it up just as the GOUF brought down its sword, stopping the blow cold.

In the GOUF's cockpit, Rau smirked. "As expected from the likes of you, Moonlight Mad Dog!"

Morgan blinked in surprise. "Rau Le Creuset?! The White Knight of ZAFT?!" The GOUF surged forward and forced the Windam on the defensive, long enough for the Murasame to come charging in with a beam rifle barrage. "So you survived the Junius War after all!"

"Destiny does not have in store for me so pedestrian a fate!" cackled Rau as he whirled in for another attack.

"Your choice disappoints me, Morgan," Carrey added, as his Murasame drew a beam saber. "I thought your conscience was stronger than that!"

Morgan grinned and warded them both off with a burst from his gunbarrels. "It's a regular ace pilot reunion here," he chuckled. "Come on, you two! Show me what you can do!"

Emily yelped in surprise as the battlefield split in two and a pair of pulsing beam blasts went barreling by. She snapped her attention towards their source and watched with a sinking heart as the Windams up ahead moved aside making room for a Euclid mobile armor to come charging towards the fortress.

"Well, shit," Trojan said. "I didn't know they'd brought one of those." His DOM's monoeye flicked towards the Slaughter Dagger. "Hey Emily, you're our ace here "

"What about me?!" Lily yelled.

"Not the time for that," interrupted Emily. "It has a positron reflector. You'll have to get close. Don't let it get past you or it'll have a clear shot at Terminal."

The three mobile suits charged forward, beam rifles blazing, and the Euclid immediately activated its positron reflector to shrug off the attacks. Trojan charged in with a scream, beam sabers on the end of his rifle ignited, and brought the blades down towards the Euclid's gray armor but the huge mobile armor darted to the side with unnatural speed and avoided the attack.

"What the ?!" Trojan started, and then cut himself off as the Windams behind the mobile armor opened fire and pounded his beam shield. "How can it move that fast?!"

Emily floored the Dagger's booster and switched to a saber of her own. "As long as you can get close !"

The Euclid stopped short, ticked its nose up, and let loose a pulsing wave of beam fire. Emily jammed the controls to the right and barely avoided the blasts, at the cost of her Dagger's right leg, which vanished in a burst of fire.

"Emily!" Lily shouted; the Dagger shuddered as Lily's Vent Savior seized it by the shoulder and hurled it clear of the Euclid's next attack. The white Gundam whirled around and slammed a plasma cannon volley into the Euclid's armor, and Lily groaned in frustration as the shots landed against a shimmering barrier instead. "Jeez, I take the mobile suit with all the cannons and I have to fight this thing with it!"

Emily's eyes lit up. "Trojan, solid shells! You brought the DOM's Gigalauncher, didn't you?!"

"Yeah, but solid shells won't punch through "

"It doesn't matter, just knock it around and distract the pilot so one of us can get close!" The Dagger took off as the Windams moved in from behind, and the Euclid righted itself and started back towards the fortress. "Oh no you don't!"

Trojan's DOM swept in with the Gigalauncher in its left hand and fired off three bazooka shells before the Windams forced him back. The shells slammed into the Euclid's reflector, knocking it off course and throwing up a pall of smoke around its armor. Emily lunged up in the Dagger, saber drawn, and went charging back down with a scream

Instead, the smoke parted, the Euclid jetted back, and the Dagger's saber caught nothing. Emily shot her eyes back up towards her opponent and jammed back the controls just in time for the Euclid to open fire and blow off the Dagger's right arm.

Through the smoke, what was left of the Dagger charged forward and Emily fixed her foe with a scowl. "You think that's going to stop me?!"

The Euclid fired again, but the Dagger spiraled beneath its shots and then lunged upward again. Driven back, the mobile armor angled its guns up to fire and the Windams swept in for support but the Vent Savior pummeled it with a salvo of plasma shots, and Emily came down with a scream to plunge her saber through the Euclid's cockpit and rip the mobile armor open.

"Lily, now!" The Dagger lunged off the Euclid's shattered armor, and from behind her the Vent Savior tore the Euclid in two with a furious blast of plasma. Emily watched carefully as the Windams pulled back, shielding themselves from the Euclid's fiery death.

A bolt of white energy split the air in front of her and she jammed the controls to the side just in time for a wave of green beam energy to blow off the Dagger's right arm. The mobile suit's Aile Striker exploded in a blaze that threw Emily forward in her seat, slamming her head into the console before her.

"Emily!" Trojan shouted he snapped his eyes forward and stared in disbelief as two more Euclid units came roaring into the fight. "What the hell?! More of them!?"

Up above, Lily wailed in surprise as the Vent Savior ducked aside from a furious beam rifle barrage from the Windams. "Where did that thing come from?!"

Trojan felt his stomach tighten. "No way...they threw out that first one to distract us and wear us down, so the other two could move in! It was a sacrificial lamb!"

The second Euclid leveled off its guns for a lethal second salvo, but an instant later the Vent Savior appeared from above to pour firepower into the Euclid's dorsal surface, just long enough for Trojan's DOM to swoop in, seize the mutilated Dagger, and make a speedy retreat. Lily jacked the Savior backward to avoid fire from the third Euclid.

"Get her out of here!" Lily shouted.

Trojan frantically keyed on the frequency to contact the Dagger. "Emily, answer me! Are you alright?!"

In the Dagger's smoky cockpit, Emily sat up painfully and then spared a nervous glance down towards the shards of glass and drops of blood floating around her head. She gently pulled off her helmet and hissed at the pain as her hair flopped free. The cuts on her forehead where blood was trickling down her face didn't seem deep, at least, and she probably would have smashed her skull open without that helmet but that didn't make it nicer to look at or think about.

She looked up towards Terminal. Her Dagger was out of commission, but that wasn't the end of that.

"Well, that could have gone better," Emily grunted. She glanced towards the shattered auxiliary screen and smiled reassuringly at Trojan. "Sorry 'bout that." She changed the frequency and held a hand to her head. "Lily, I'm heading back to Terminal for a minute. Are you gonna be alright on your own?"

"Yeah," she answered, "but don't take too long."

"I thought you were the Blood Knight of Outer Space."

Instantly, Lily perked up. "That sounds like a challenge!"

"It is. Hold off those enemies until we get back and I'll think of something cool for you." Lily sailed off into battle with a cackle, and Emily looked back up towards Trojan's DOM. "I'm going to find Selene and take out the Eclipse."


"Gabriel. I renamed it."

"I didn't know you could do that."

"It's my Gundam, I'll call it what I want." She touched the side of her head and winced; the cuts would just have to wait.

"What if they aren't done with the adjustments yet?"

Emily glanced over her shoulder at Lily, still battling the Alliance forces and still fending off those Euclids with waves of beam cannon fire. "They'll have to be."

Earth Alliance Agamemnon-class carrier Henry Clay

"Euclid unit Romeo 1 has been destroyed," the operator called out. "Romeo 2 and Romeo 3 have engaged the enemy."

Vice Admiral Mathis sat back uncomfortably in his command chair. The Minerva's mobile suit contingent had been largely destroyed in previous battles, but intelligence was not as confident about the loss of its pilots, and Mathis would take no chances. It was a disquieting way to use his valuable mobile armor units, having one go in to absorb the brunt of attacks by any of those skilled pilots and sending in another two to launch an overwhelming counterattack.

He studied the tactical map and watched the Resistance's defense line around Terminal steadily shrink. They did not have sufficient forces to hold out against his own, not for much longer but he still felt restless.

No, he had not caught them by surprise, and he could not yet say confidently that they had no other tricks up their sleeve. The Minerva itself had yet to be found, after all, and they had a way of forcing open the jaws of defeat and finding victory within.

Earth Alliance battleship Charlemagne, Debris Belt

Ivan Danilov studied the scene before him. Flashes of light flickered up from somewhere in the Debris Belt, poking out around the wreckage, but if the tactical map was any indication, the battle was going well for Admiral Mathis. Perhaps the Charlemagne's presence would not be

"Heat sources, captain!" the sensor officer cried, and a moment later the Charlemagne rattled as missiles came streaking out of the wreckage. Danilov looked up in disbelief.

"CIWS, respond! Jason, find the sources, now! Ronald, weapons on standby!"

Immediately, the bridge rattled as missiles and beams slammed into the Charlemagne's hull and a moment later, space in front of the bridge flickered and three N Dagger Ns materialized and rocketed away to safety.

"N Daggers?!" Vera exclaimed. "How the hell did the Resistance get those?!"

Danilov's eyes searched the space before his ship, and they went wide in disbelief as he caught sight of no less than ten warships rising from the debris. "Ronald, target those warships! It's an enemy combat fleet! Open fire!"

The Charlemagne quaked as its Gottfried cannons opened fire but the blasts dissipated a moment later and for the first time, Danilov noticed a strange tint to the area surrounding the fleet. He felt his heart stop.

"Our blasts were stopped cold, sir," Ronald answered from the weapons console. "Enemy warships seem to have released anti-beam depth charges."

"The Valiants, then! Target the enemy fleet!" shouted Vera.

"Impossible, control circuits have been disabled!"

"Then send out our mobile suits," Danilov ordered

"The catapults aren't responding, sir!" Sheila exclaimed from the MS deck console. "We'll have to open the doors manually, and by then..."

"Then, Connie," Danilov went on with a growl, "get us a line to Admiral Mathis. Tell him that the Vedlow Fleet is coming up on his position from the rear."

"Sir, the communication channels aren't responding!" Connie protested. "We're being jammed!"

"Jammed?!" Vera sputtered.

"Searching for the source of the interference now!"

Danilov stared ahead in disbelief, and the pieces came together in his mind. They had used those N Daggers to get close enough to launch a devastating surprise attack to disable his weapons and stymie his mobile suits, then covered their own escape with anti-beam depth charges, while jamming his communications somehow. That was the Vedlow Fleet; that was their professionalism and skill, disabling his mighty, unsuspecting battleship while they slipped into the fray at Terminal from behind Mathis's position.

Danilov looked back towards the Vedlow Fleet, as they escaped.

Sparks flew and Athrun Zala felt his teeth rattle as the Raigo Gundam slammed its saber down hard onto the Infinite Justice's blade. Athrun surged back with sheer thruster power, but the Raigo slammed a knee into the Justice's torso and sent it reeling, and then followed it up with a powerful kick to the head. Athrun shook his head, recollected his wits, and jabbed his saber forward to spoil the Raigo's finishing blow.

"It's like fighting Kira!" he snarled. The Raigo backed away and darted up, angling to come down behind the Justice; Athrun whirled around, batted the Raigo's saber aside, and brought down his own blade but the Raigo thrust its shield into the path to spoil the blow. "Dammit! He's reading my moves!"

Inside the Raigo, ND HE tightened his fists around the Raigo's control sticks and tried to control his breathing. That green robot bird fluttered by in his mind's eye.

"Get out of my head," he growled. "Get out of my head!" The Raigo roared forward and threw the Justice back. "I don't remember you! I'm not who you say I am! You have no idea who I am!"

Athrun glowered up at his oncoming foe, the twisted, distorted pressure pummeling him from all sides. "It's bad enough what Valentine and Rau did to the real Kira," he grunted, "but for you to come before me too...!"

The Raigo brought its saber down; Athrun swung back with a scream to stop it cold.

ND HE trembled with rage. "Quit doing this to me!" he screamed. "Quit messing with my mind!"

"Auel, missiles, nine o'clock!" Hayden cried. Auel snapped his eyes to the left.

"How the fuck did they ?!" He cut himself off, hurled a grenade, and backed away as the blasts flashed up in front of him. A lone Windam lunged up over the flames, beam rifle leveled off, and squeezed off a shot it landed hard against the ZAKU's shield and drove it back. A gunbarrel from the Proto Chaos shot it down but then another Windam ducked past its comrade's fiery end, whipped up its own rifle, and fired a shot of its own to cleanly sever the ZAKU's left arm at the shoulder.

"Auel, pull back!" Hayden shouted; his Aile Windam dropped in before the ZAKU to kick the enemy Windam back and then spear it through the cockpit on a beam rifle shot.

Auel shook his head and glowered up at the oncoming enemies. "Those bastards took out Sting," he shot back. "I'm not letting them "

"Neider, move!" Courtney roared.

Too late, Auel turned towards the front and instinctively pulled back the controls as three Windams opened fire with bazookas and ruthlessly pummeled the Gunner ZAKU Warrior. Auel screamed in pain as shrapnel filled the cockpit and all went dark.

The Proto Chaos swarmed its gunbarrels into the enemy's ranks and picked off two of them, forcing the survivor back. Courtney hissed a curse and glanced over at Hayden's Windam. "Hayden, return him to base. I will cover you."

As Hayden's Windam moved in to seize the maimed ZAKU, Courtney glowered back at the enemy.

The lights flooded the empty hangar as Emily and Trojan touched down on the gantry in front of the mutilated Slaughter Dagger. Emily gingerly touched her head again still hurting, but she would have to just get over that. Trojan glanced at her nervously.

"You must have a concussion," he started. "If you hit that console hard enough to break the visor on your helmet "

"I'll be fine," Emily waved him off. "I'll worry about it later." Together they headed down the gantry, to the next hangar over.

Selene was there waiting for them, and gasped the instant she laid eyes on Emily. "What happened to you?! I've been trying to contact you for five minutes, I thought you'd been killed!"

Emily touched the tips of two fingers to her forehead and eyed the blood carefully. "Just some brain cells."

"Come here, that looks pretty bad "

"It's just cuts from broken glass," Emily said quickly, "and I'll worry about them when there aren't two mobile armors out there approaching Terminal." She turned her eyes towards the dark shape at the rear of the hangar. "Is the Gundam done?"

Selene adjusted her lab coat. "As done as it'll get. The heat rod and beam launcher aren't finished yet, but the Voiture Lumiere should operate stably and you'll have the Hamavet." She looked back at Emily. "The G-forces are going to be strong. Are you sure you're up to this?"

Emily merely shrugged. "We don't have any other choice. You should get to a shelter, I'm going to go."

As Selene reluctantly drifted down the gantry towards the hangar's exit doors, Emily turned towards Trojan, hating the feeling rippling off of his presence. It sent her mind reeling back to Isaac, to the last boy she had met with these stupid feelings that caused so much trouble. But they couldn't be helped. She told herself that it was just inviting heartbreak to care but that never stopped it, and the fear of what bad things could happen overshadowed the possibilities of everything else.

"Listen," she said, "when we get back out there, don't try to keep up with me. You won't be able to and you'll just get yourself killed."

Trojan frowned. "I'm not going to just hide while you go fight all alone."

"You aren't gonna have a choice. There is no way the DOM can keep up with the Eclipse. Not a chance." She paused and searched for words that wouldn't have unwanted implications. "And I don't want you doing anything stupid."

"Alright," he conceded, "but if you need me..."

"The Eclipse can handle it."

Trojan glanced over awkwardly at the silent mobile suit. Emily studied his face for a moment, turning over the feeling of hurt and disappointment churning around him, and her mind went back to Isaac. He had thrown himself into a fight he had no chance of winning, to protect a girl he had awkwardly pursued at Carpentaria and in which he had sparked no interest. He still didn't not in that way, at least but Trojan was different. Maybe he was no more important or serious than Isaac, and maybe her own feelings were no different but now...

She will be our angel of death, the voice reminded her.

Emily pursed her lips. Your angel of death wouldn't do this, she shot back.

"Trojan?" she asked as he turned away. He looked back at her and she stepped forward, lifted up his chin, and kissed him. "I mean it," she whispered as she pulled away. "Don't do anything stupid."

"U-Um, okay," Trojan sputtered. Emily smiled at his bright red face as he stumbled around and headed for the hangar exit. Viveka was right; boys were funny.

Her smile faded as she pushed off the railing and ducked into the Eclipse's open hatch. As the Gundam came online and she folded down the cockpit console, she frowned at the startup screen proudly announcing its name another thing she'd have to change. The Gundam rumbled and began to descend, taking a lift down towards a catapult, and an operator's face appeared on the auxiliary screen.

"There you are," she sighed in relief. "About time you launched. This is docking control. We're ready when you are."

"Understood," Emily answered as she strapped herself in and glanced around the cockpit far sleeker and closer than the Twilight's cockpit, with far more of its panoramic screen visible around the consoles. "What's the situation with those Euclid units?"

"Bad. That white mobile suit is still holding them off, but they've taken out fifteen other mobile suits that went to help."

Emily smiled. I guess I owe Lily something. "Then I'm going. Activate the catapult." The Eclipse stomped forward and locked itself into the catapult, and Emily peered up ahead.

"Shit!" someone on the operator's end cried. "Four Windams and one of those Euclids have broken through! They're heading for Catapult Six!"

"That's the one with the new model!" the operator cried, and turned back towards her screen. "Look, you gotta "

"Emily, Eclipse, launching!"

The catapult fired, the lights flashed to life, and the Gundam Eclipse roared into battle.

Up ahead, the four Windams broke formation around the Euclid but the one at the formation's top reared up in surprise as the Eclipse burst into the space before it, slammed both its clawed hands into the cockpit, and tore the entire mobile suit in two. Emily grunted at the force Selene hadn't been kidding about the G-forces.

She whipped around as the beams flashed around her and darted down towards the next Windam, to rip it in two with a palm cannon blow. The third Windam rushed in from behind, using the Euclid as cover but the Eclipse whipped and flung its arm out. A panel on the inside of the arm slid open and a clawed anchor blasted its way out of the arm and embedded itself in the Windam's cockpit, and with a shout, Emily pulled the anchor back and impaled the Windam through the chest with her mobile suit's left hand. She flung the sparking Windam's remains away and put herself between the Euclid and Terminal.

"What is that thing?!" the remaining Windam pilot exclaimed. "Is that the Twilight?!"

"No," the Euclid's pilot answered, "that's a new model!"

The Eclipse descended with a flash upon the Windam and blasted clear through its torso with a palm cannon strike, and then whirled around to face the Euclid. The gray mobile armor opened fire with its beam cannons, and Emily flicked her eyes to the right as the second one came streaking in as well.

"Sorry!" Lily's voice. "They got past holy crap, is that the new Gundam?"

Emily ground her teeth as the mobile armors lined up to open fire. Four Windams and two Euclids as your first prey, Eclipse. That's not too bad.

With a blast of afterimages, the Eclipse activated its beam wings and rocketed upward to let the Euclids' shots sear by underneath. They both pulled up and poured beam fire after her, but the afterimages flared and blazed through the black sky, and Emily raised a hand up to the hilt of her mobile suit's new close-combat weapon. One of the Euclids nosed up after her, beam cannons blazing, and it launched off a barrage of missiles from its rear section

Emily seized her chance, charged forward with a scream, and drew the Eclipse's beam sword. The green shimmering beam flashed to life in her hands, and with a triumphant shout she plunged down through the Euclid's fire, dipped the blade down into the Euclid's armor, and then flicked her wrist up to rip a gaping hole in the Euclid's hull. And then, with an ear-splitting screech, she drove the Eclipse's left hand deep into the wound and poured fire from the palm cannon into the Euclid's insides. The second Euclid came down with a crash to rescue its comrade but Emily lunged back and kicked the dead machine's nose, forcing it upward to smack into the second mobile armor. The first one belched sparks and exploded, sending the second one reeling, and Emily saw her chance

"And now for you!"

The Eclipse was there in a heartbeat, beam sword raised high, and Emily brought it down with a scream to slash off the mobile armor's left-hand beam cannon and engine. The Euclid shuddered under the blow, and Emily's eyes darted up towards the Vent Savior

"Lily, now!"

Lily wasted no time in lining up a beam cannon barrage through the Euclid's gaping new hole, and both mobile suits backed away as the mobile armor staggered forward and exploded.

"Th-That's the Eclipse?!" Lily cried. "That thing is a monster!"

Trojan's green DOM dropped in from above. "Emily, are you alright in there?"

In the Eclipse's humming cockpit, Emily scanned the battlefield. There was a strange point of pressure out there, and there was still that fleet to deal with. The Eclipse could do it. Selene had told her about this power, this power that would end this war. Now it was hers and now it would claim its dues.

"You two stay here," she said. "I've got work to do."

Before they could protest, the Eclipse flashed its eyes and took off.

Rau Le Creuset felt the change immediately, even as his beam sword blazed against the beam saber held by the Moonlight Mad Dog's Windam. Emily was out here now, and she had the Eclipse, and now the world would see what the Angel of Death could really do.

In his Windam, Morgan blinked in surprise and glanced in the direction of the pressure buzzing persistently against his mind. It was the mark of a Newtype a different one, one as strong as Rau Le Creuset before him.


Morgan brought the gunbarrels in around him to force back the GOUF. Carrey's Murasame came in from behind, beam saber at the ready but Morgan activated the Gunbarrel Striker's Gatling gun to force back the incoming foe, and with a flash he rocketed above both mobile suits, recalled his gunbarrels, and stormed off into the darkness.

"Where is he going?" Carrey began, but Rau cut him off with a laugh.

"Our little angel has come out to play!" he cackled. "I am not going to miss this!"

The GOUF's monoeye lit up as it pursued with a burst of exhaust.

Another beam blast drilled its way through the cockpit of an incoming Windam, and Shinn backed away under a barrage of beam rifle blasts. Up ahead, another squad of Windams charged with two Buster Daggers behind them, rising above their comrades to fire their high energy cannons and aiming for Terminal. Shinn grunted as the blasts landed against his beam shield.

"Shinn, there's not much I can do here without reloading or something," Riika warned. "And they're getting awfully close to Stella's position."

A white bolt danced through the air in front of him, and Shinn glanced to his right just in time to catch a flash of sky-blue light whirling through the debris and leaving fiery puffs in its wake. And in the distance, far behind her, he could see another handful of lights moving in from behind the Alliance fleet.

"Is that Emily and Aoma...?" he started.

"Did she finally launch?" asked Riika. "What's been taking her so long?!"

Shinn looked back towards the enemy and shouldered Riika's ZAKU to the side. "No complaining now," he growled, "the tide's about to turn!"

Emily felt her muscles tense as she caught the pressure again coming towards her. Up ahead was a Windam in dark green and white, with an orange backpack a backpack that fired off four gunbarrels, and a moment later they all opened fire around the Eclipse and put her on the defensive.

"There you are," she breathed. "You must be some kind of ace or something."

The Windam poured fire after the Eclipse, even as its afterimages filled the sky. Emily rocketed around the Windam and came down her beam sword raised the Windam whirled around and backed away, in time to avoid the sword but not in time to save its rifle. It abandoned the ruined weapon, drew a beam saber, and charged and Emily jammed her sword into the saber's path to stop the blow.

"Well, well, well," a gruff man's voice echoed through the Eclipse's cockpit, "you're that Angel of Death character I've heard so much about, aren't you?"

Emily felt her right eye twitch in annoyance. "Maybe."

"Feeling cheeky today, are we?" chuckled Morgan Chevalier. "Let's see how you feel after this!"

The gunbarrels came to life and swarmed like animals around the Eclipse. Emily let out her breath and let her instinct take over, and the Eclipse wove a path through the fire and rocketed upward, the gunbarrels in hot pursuit. An instant later, she whirled around, sword blazing, and sliced one of them in two.

"Not bad!" roared Morgan, and with a crash he came down from behind with his saber. Emily whipped around to smack the Windam aside with her sword, and then jetted to the right as another gunbarrel darted out from behind Morgan to open fire. A third leapt up behind her she whirled around and cut it in two, just as the fourth lined up to fire and barely missed the Eclipse's head.

"It'll take more than that!" Emily growled.

"Oh, it will, will it?" Morgan laughed. "Let's just see !"

The Windam charged and slammed its saber against the Eclipse's beam sword, hard enough to knock it backward and then darted back up, as more beam blasts sliced through around the black Gundam. Emily lunged up over the shots and then rocketed aside to dodge fire from the two remaining gunbarrels

Instead, the white bolt was there to show her danger, and she threw the Eclipse down just in time to avoid a blue object with two pink beam sabers stretching off its front, barreling by. Suddenly the black sky was alive with beam fire, and Emily caught sight of another shape, a blue mobile armor but no pilot inside.

"What is that thing?!" she shouted.

Morgan smirked. "That receptor in the Exus is running well." His Windam rushed in, beam saber held high. "It's like having a whole second Gunbarrel Striker, isn't it?"

Emily scowled as the beams closed in and two of the gunbarrels sprouted beam blades and charged. She danced around the attacks, only for the Windam to lunge into her face with a saber strike her beam sword barely deflected.

"This is it, kid!" Morgan cried victoriously, and two of the blue Exus unit's gunbarrels came streaking in, beam blades ignited

The seed fell before Emily's eyes, and with a crash she seized the Windam's shoulder, tossed it around her own mobile suit, and threw it into the gunbarrels' path. Morgan yelped in surprise and redirected them only for the Eclipse to cut one of them in half.

"Enough of this!" Emily shouted. "Let's see what this Voiture Lumiere can do!"

She threw the switch, the backpack binders opened up, and a blinding flash of light poured forth from the two binders on the Eclipse's back. The beam blades shone to life with greater intensity than before, and Morgan stared in disbelief as the Eclipse blasted off around the battlefield, afterimages blazing.

"What how the where did she get that from?!"

In an instant, the Gunbarrel Striker's remaining gunbarrels were slashed in two and exploding, and Morgan went back on the defensive with the Exus and its remaining three no, two gunbarrels. The last two activated their beam blades and charged at the blindingly-fast Eclipse. Emily punched the controls to the side, jerking the Eclipse to the right and letting its sword saw through the incoming gunbarrel. The last one darted to the side, beam cannons extended only for the Eclipse to fire its anchor into the machine's armor, and then with a crash she swung it like a hammer towards the Windam itself, crashing against its shield.

"How did you get so fast all of the sudden?!" Morgan exclaimed.

The Exus itself came in, beam cannons blazing, and Morgan lined up from behind to attack with his saber but the Eclipse darted up underneath the Exus and ripped it in two with its beam saber. Morgan reared back as the Eclipse returned, and with a crash it brought down its saber through the Windam's right shoulder and right knee.

"Dammit!" Morgan growled; with a crash he slammed the Eclipse in the face with his Windam's remaining knee, then backed away and released his entire payload of combat flares to cover his escape. His maimed Windam threw sparks and he scanned the battlefield for the nearest ship that Archangel-class from the Phantom Pain, perhaps.

Back on the battlefield, Emily painfully rubbed her head and watched the Moonlight Mad Dog make his escape.

Battleship Minerva

The Minerva spread its wings and rocketed out of its port, and the ship itself seemed to shudder with glee as it finally left port and returned to the battlefield where it belonged. On the bridge, Meyrin sat back with satisfaction. Once again the mechanics had fixed her mistakes and this time she would not let them down.

"Chen, target the Tannhäuser on the enemy fleet's starboard wing and open fire. Try to catch two or three of those Drake ships."

"Tannhäuser targeted," Chen answered.

Meyrin looked forward and savored the satisfaction rippling through her for a moment. For too long her ship had been on the defensive, spewing smoke and struggling to find friendly anchorage. Now it was time for that to change.

"Tannhäuser, fire!"

Earth Alliance Agamemnon-class carrier Henry Clay

"Admiral, the Minerva has exited dock and opened fire on us! The Meade has been destroyed outright!"

Admiral Mathis fought down the panic in his veins. "Detach five ships and their mobile suits to deal with them. Don't panic, they're only one ship and their Gundams are tied up!"

To the starboard side, as one of the Nelson-class battleships broke apart under the Minerva's fire, another Nelson and four Drake-class destroyers turned their bows towards the oncoming winged battleship. Mathis forcefully reminded himself that their Gundams were either gone or destroyed and even that one new Gundam that was tearing up his men was focusing on defending the fortress, not attacking the fleet. So far

Outside, the Nelson at the head of the detachment suddenly cracked in two and exploded from enemy fire from behind. Mathis's blood froze.

"Source on that enemy fire, now!"

"Searching..." The sensor officer's eyes went wide in disbelief. "Sir, ten enemy warships emerging behind us from the debris field!"


"They're launching mobile suits! Contact lost with the Vercingetorix! And now we've lost the Wavell! Admiral !"

Mathis stared with an open mouth at the visuals on the auxiliary screen of the handful of ships, launching mobile suits and tearing his fleet apart from the rear. Another ship exploded outside and the Henry Clay rocked.

"Impossible...that's the Vedlow Fleet!"

He looked around the bridge of the Henry Clay helplessly, and then turned his eyes towards the battlefield.

"Signal to all units," he said hoarsely, "full retreat, immediately!"

To be continued...