Phase 04 - Kill or Be Killed

Mobile Suit Gundam SEED - Pain

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Phase 04 - Kill or Be Killed

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February 23rd, CE 72 - Atlantic Federation Agamemnon-class carrier John Adams

鼎aptain! the sensor officer exclaimed, turning towards Richards in the captain痴 chair. 展e池e picking up a Nelson-class in approaching on the starboard side! It痴 not responding to hails!

Richards eyed it carefully. 的t痴 heading straight for us, he said, 殿lmost as if it痴 on a combat bearing.

的t痴 the Wyoming! Receiving a transmission! the communication officer cried.

The screens came to life, and Richards found himself greeted by the smiling, chiseled face of Nanto Fredrik.

鏑ieutenant Commander Samuel Richards, Fredrik said, his imposing baritone filling the bridge. 鄭re you surprised to see me?

Richards narrowed his eyes at the man, his eyes hidden behind black sunglasses. 哲ot especially.

Fredrik chuckled under his breath. 鼎onsider yourself under arrest for insubordination and suspicion of intent to sell military secrets to a foreign nation, he said. The John Adams bridge crew stared in shock. 溺y men are coming to detain you and your accomplices, and recover that which you have stolen from us.

Richards scowled back. 展hat kind of man are you to talk about those boys as if they were weapons? he asked.

Fredrik痴 grin grew wider. 添ou値l see, he said. 泥eactivate your engine. Your ship is to remain dead in space while we conduct our arrest and search. Do not test me, Commander.

Richards glowered back, and glanced towards his crew. 滴elm, he said, 田ut the engines and stand by for docking.

The bridge crew numbly complied, and as the ship came to a halt, Richards glared back at Fredrik. It was out of his hands now.

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滴ey, hey, what the hell is going on?! Clotho demanded, as Lily herded him out of the infirmary with Orga and Shani. 展hy did the ship stop?!

典here痴 another ship out there! Orga exclaimed, looking out the porthole. 鄭re they coming for us?

典hey池e coming for you, Lily said grimly. The three pilots looked back at her in disbelief. 添ou guys have a few minutes to get to those mobile suits of yours and escape. Now get going.

釘ut what about you?! Shani insisted, shoving past Orga and Clotho.

典hat doesn稚 matter, Lily said, waving him off.

的t does to me! Shani yelled, glaring back at her. She looked at him in surprise. 摘veryone is telling us to leave without them!

The ship rattled, and Lily looked up in anger.

典hey致e docked, she said. 添ou guys are running out of time. Get going.

展hat is it worth if we can稚 take the people who matter to us with us?! Orga shot back.

的t痴 not about us! Lily answered. 的t痴 about you! None of us want to see you go back to the Alliance and the drugs and the pain! That痴 why you have to go! You have to leave us, or Azrael will have won!

The three pilots looked angrily at each other.

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McCormick cut off his live video feed of the bridge as Wyoming docked. He glanced outside the infirmary, finding Lily arguing with Clotho, Orga, and Shani.

展hat are you three still doing here? he demanded. 添ou池e running out of time. They致e already docked, and you still have to get down to the hangar.

展e don稚 want to leave without you, Clotho said defiantly. McCormick shook his head.

添ou can稚 save us and yourselves at the same time, he said. 展e would just slow you down and you壇 be captured again. Do you want to go back to Azrael?

展hat痴 the point if we池e just alone again?! Orga yelled.

添ou don稚 have to be alone, Lily said. 展e池e not the only ones in the Earth Sphere who will care enough about you to not send you back to the Alliance.

The door at the end of the hall came crashing inward, and three flak-jacketed soldiers wielding assault rifles tramped into view.

添ou! Halt! Hands in the air! the first shouted, as they trained their rifles on the three pilots. 展e have orders

McCormick put himself between the soldiers and pilots. 典hose orders are unjust, he said. The soldiers approached, rifles raised.

徹rders are orders, doctor, the first soldier shot back. 添ou are under arrest.

McCormick glanced over his shoulder meaningfully at the pilots and Lily, and with a shout, charged towards them, wielding a scalpel. Before they could fire, he had already killed the leader, slamming the scalpel into his throat in a gruesome spray of blood. The sounds of gunfire filled the hallway as the remaining soldiers cut McCormick down.

Lily ground her teeth and seized the three disbelieving pilots by the arms, pulling them into a side door and locking it behind her.

迭un! she shouted.

釘ut the doctor Orga began.

滴e died so that you could get away! Lily shot back. 鄭re you going to let that death be in vain?! She pulled out a scalpel of her own. 的値l protect you along the way, but you池e running out of time!

The three pilots looked painfully at each other, and, tears in their eyes, took off down the corridor.

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Escaped!? Fredrik roared, standing on the bridge over the restrained Richards. 展hat the hell do you mean 奏he doctor stopped you?! Find them! Seal the ship! They can稚 escape!

Richards watched stoically, flanked and held back by Fredrik痴 soldiers, as Fredrik turned angrily on him.

添ou think you池e clever, don稚 you? he asked. 滴ow many more of you sentimental weaklings will stand in our way?! Wars are not won by kindness, they are won by sacrifice!

典he war is over, Commander, Richards said stonily.

Fredrik purpled in rage and struck Richards across the face. 典he war is NEVER over! His eyes flashed behind his sunglasses. 添ou goddamned traitor, you will be punished for this! I will have you begging me to kill you! He looked back at his lieutenant. 擢ind them at once!

Richards suppressed his smile and prayed.

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敵oddammit, goddammit, goddammit, why is this happening?! Clotho growled, squeezing tears out of his eyes as he raced down the dark back hallways of the John Adams. 展hy are they killing everyone?!

典hey池e killing everyone because they池e the same kind of people that Azrael was! Lily said. 典hat痴 why you have to get out of here!

A trio of soldiers appeared at the end of the hall, guns raised Lily shoved Clotho into a side doorway, an instant before Shani yanked her aside as the soldiers opened fire. The shots tore by, punching holes in the walls behind them.

典hey池e pinned! one of the soldiers shouted. 溺ove in!

As the soldiers approached, Orga charged out of hiding with a scream and seized one of the soldiers by the head, snapping his neck in two. He seized the dead man痴 rifle and lunged at the remaining two guards, struggling to aim at him. With a sickening crunch, he beat down the second man, and as he fell, the second soldier drilled a misdirected shot through his comrade痴 head. Orga seized the fallen rifles, tossing them at Shani and Clotho.

典hese fuckers killed the doctor, Orga said, his eyes burning. 鏑et痴 make 粗m pay.

Another soldier rounded the corner with a comrade Shani and Clotho opened fire on the shocked infantrymen, cutting them down. Lily watched them in surprise.

添ou池e coming with us, Shani said sternly, offering her his hand.

展e still need to get to the captain, Orga added. He glanced over his shoulder, moving into an empty room and pointing at a computer terminal. Lily set to work, bringing up a video feed of the bridge.

展e致e secured the three prototypes, Fredrik痴 lieutenant reported on the bridge of the John Adams. Fredrik smiled thinly.

典he pilots cannot escape in anything but those machines, he said. 的鼠l return to the Wyoming. It痴 only a matter of time. He glanced at Richards. 鄭nd as for you, Commander He raised his gun, pointing it at Richards.

哲o! Orga shouted.

On the bridge, Richards watched Fredrik carefully.

的f you kill me, he said, 土ou will only make them angrier.

Fredrik smirked.

的 can live with that.

He pulled the trigger.

Clotho, Orga, and Shani screamed in outrage as Richards pitched backward, blood pouring from his chest.

典hat guy! Clotho shrieked, pointing vindictively at Fredrik. I値l kill him!

Orga痴 eyes flashed furiously. 鼎ome on, he said, 努e池e getting back to our fucking machines! These motherfuckers are going to DIE!

添ou still have to fight your way into them, Lily warned.

典hat痴 alright with me! Clotho snapped. 鏑et痴 go!

The four renegades beat their way out of the room and charged back down the hallways.

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The hangar doors came down with a crash, and four figures emerged from the smoke. A platoon of soldiers fortified behind a set of stacked crates opened fire Clotho, Orga, Shani, and Lily ducked behind another pair of crates to return fire.

泥ammit! Orga growled. 典hey池e right there! He looked up towering over him was the silent Forbidden Gundam.

釘ut you致e got to distract them! Lily insisted. 徹therwise they値l kill you as you go for the cockpits!

典hen we値l just have to kill them first! Clotho cried, firing back. One man across the way went down Clotho ducked back behind cover as the remaining soldiers shot back angrily.

的f you guys cover me Shani began. He was cut off by a bullet ricocheting with a deafening ring off one of the nearby crates. He looked back

Lily knelt behind him, blood gushing from her abdomen.

Lily! he screamed, grabbing her by the shoulders as she pitched forward. She looked down at her blood-soaked hands, her face ashen, and finally looked back up at Shani.

典heythey couldn稚 Orga murmured.

Lily smiled weakly at them. 的 guessyou have to go without us

哲o! Shani exclaimed. 添ouyou helped us! It can稚 end like this!

Lily coughed painfully, blood trickling out the side of her mouth. 笛ustpromise me, she murmured, growing cold in Shani痴 arms. 撤romise methat you値l find a placeto call home She coughed again more blood came out. 鄭 placeto be free

鏑ily, don稚! Clotho cried, reaching towards her.

She coughed one last time and was silent.

The three pilots looked in horror, as Shani held her still-bleeding corpse. Her last words rang in their heads. They slowly looked back towards the Alliance soldiers as they moved in for the kill.

典hem Orga whispered.

典hey killed her Clotho added.

鉄o we値lkill them Shani finished.

The three pilots snapped their rifles up and opened fire.

The soldiers retreated, several of them dying in the onslaught, and scampered back to their cover. Shani vaulted up through the air towards the Forbidden痴 open cockpit. The soldiers tried to pick him off, but Clotho and Orga opened fire, forcing them back. Shani leapt into the cockpit, slamming the hatch shut. The familiar feelings returned as he went through the sequence that was burned into his brain. The Forbidden a newer version, he noted came online, its eyes flashing.

The soldiers panicked and screamed as the Forbidden Gundam shredded them with its Igelstellungs.

Clotho and Orga leapt into their own machines, and with a crash, the Raider and Calamity Gundams tore their way out of their hangar braces.

典hey killed Lily, and the doctor, and the captain, Orga growled. 典hat guy with the sunglasses was the leader.

典hen we値l RIP HIM APART! Clotho shrieked.

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典hey致e what?! Fredrik shrieked, standing on the bridge of the Wyoming. 典hey致e reached their mobile suits?! What the hell is going on?! I thought you said they were secure!

鉄omehow they fought their way through! the lieutenant protested. 展e can稚 stop them like this!

Fredrik slammed his fist down against the armrest. 鼎aptain! he roared, turning towards the Wyoming痴 beleaguered captain. 泥eploy the Dagger team at once! Kill them!

釘ut sir, I thought our orders were to capture them! the captain protested.

Fredrik furiously drew his gun and killed the captain. 泥agger team, launch at once! he screamed, brandishing his gun at the shocked crew. 的 will not let those children escape!

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The hangar wall of the John Adams buckled as the Raider Gundam slammed its hammer into them. Clotho stepped aside, glancing over at the Calamity. Orga scowled and raised his bazooka, pounding a shell into the broken wall and blowing through.

Not far away, they could see the Wyoming launching a squadron of Strike Daggers. The Forbidden raised its scythe menacingly.

典his値l be just like we used to do, Orga growled. 展e kill them before they kill us.

The three Gundams took off.

The Strike Daggers moved in, beam rifles raised. Clotho looked down at the Raider痴 controls.

泥id they upgrade these things?! he asked.

The Calamity jetted backwards, taking aim with its beam cannons. 鏑et痴 find out! He opened fire the Strike Daggers rocketed apart, but one was too slow, and went down in flames as the Calamity痴 shot speared it through the cockpit.

典hey値l die! Clotho shouted, lunging up and bringing his hammer down with a crash onto another Strike Dagger. A second Dagger moved in behind him, beam saber raised a moment later, something tore it in two, and the Forbidden leapt out of the smoke, a pink beam blade shimmering on the end of its scythe. Two more Daggers opened fire Shani scowled, activating the Geschmeidig Panzer, and sent the shots sailing aside. He returned fire with his railguns, slamming the shells into the Daggers shields and knocking them back.

The Calamity shot down another Dagger with its bazooka, as Orga cast a furious glance towards the Wyoming. 的s he trying to get away?!
The Raider transformed into mobile armor mode, dodging a wave of beam fire and firing back with its mouth cannon, taking down a Dagger with a shot through the chest. 的 won稚 let it! Clotho shouted. 典hose bastards! The Calamity leapt onto the Raider痴 back, squeezing off another bazooka shot that sent the Daggers scattering. 滴ey! What the hell are you doing?!

笛ust take me over there! Orga shot back. He fired a pulsing Scylla cannon blast through another oncoming Dagger, blowing off its gun arm, and Shani leapt in behind it to finish it off with his scythe. Another Dagger rose behind him Shani scowled, firing a plasma cannon shot that twisted tightly around the Forbidden and slammed through the Dagger from behind.

Blasting up towards the Wyoming with a flash of exhaust, Clotho narrowed his eyes at the ship, opening fire. It returned his shots with a missile barrage and a quartet of beams, but the Forbidden leapt up in front of the Raider to deflect the beams with its Geschmeidig Panzer.

典hat guy with the sunglasses! Orga shouted. 滴e must be on that ship!

I値l crush him to pieces! Clotho screamed, ducking around the Forbidden and opening fire again. The Daggers rose up in their way.

的値l get rid of them, Shani said quietly, plowing through their beams with his armor. One of the Daggers came down with a beam saber raised high Shani impaled it on the spear end of his scythe and hurled the sparking wreck into another Dagger, wiping them both out in a blaze.

The Raider took off over the Forbidden痴 head, firing its Ahura Mazda cannons down as the desperate Daggers tried to pick it off from below. Shani streamed into their ranks with his scythe, taking down two Daggers in one winnowing swing, and with a crash, sending another reeling with a dual railgun blast to its shield. The Wyoming opened fire again with a wave of missiles Orga fired back with his ram cannon, detonating a pair of shells in the midst of the missiles and blasting them apart in a titanic cloud of fire.

On the bridge of the Wyoming, Fredrik痴 eyes widened in disbelief.

典his is impossible! he shouted. 典hey池e cripples! They haven稚 had any Gamma Glipheptin! They致e been rotting in bed for six months! How can this be happening?!

典he three prototypes are heading straight for us! the sensor officer cried.

鉄HOOT THEM DOWN! Fredrik roared.

Inside the Calamity, Orga leapt off the Raider痴 back, firing a full burst from his weapons and pounding through the Wyoming痴 portside catapult. The Raider fired back with the new dual beam cannon mounted on its arm, taking down another Strike Dagger as it desperately tried to protect the Wyoming.

Shani slammed through the remaining Strike Daggers with a deflected array of beam shots, ripping the last one in two with his scythe and charging towards the defenseless Wyoming. It wildly opened fire again with its cannons, as another squadron of Strike Daggers came streaming out. At their head was a 105 Dagger armed with a Sword Striker, wielding the massive anti-ship sword with both hands and charging straight towards the Forbidden.

典here痴 more?! Clotho snapped, pulling up as a squadron of Strike Daggers attacked him. Orga pulled back behind his shield as a second squadron swept in after him, and Shani rocketed up, the Sword 105 Dagger giving chase. It sent its beam boomerang hurtling up towards him Shani batted it aside with his scythe and charged back towards the Dagger, the two machines crashing together.

The Calamity leapt up, pounding off a beam salvo that tore through two Strike Daggers and sent the rest scattering behind their shields. They returned fire with a barrage of beam shots an instant later, the Raider sailed up into their ranks, crushing one of the Daggers with its hammer.

滴e痴 trying to get away! Orga growled the Calamity surged forward, plowing through a storm of beams with its shield and blowing another Dagger apart with its bazooka.

Like hell he will! Clotho shrieked, smashing another Dagger with his hammer and twirling it in front of him, letting another Dagger痴 shots crash uselessly against the crude shield. The Raider charged forward, blasting apart a second Dagger with its mouth cannon and roaring up towards the damaged Wyoming.

The Sword 105 Dagger brought its sword down with a crash on the Forbidden痴 energy deflection shields, sending the hulking Gundam reeling backward. Shani scowled and charged forward, twirling his scythe on his right hand. The Dagger fired its Panzer Eisen anchor towards the Forbidden痴 scythe Shani scowled as he brought it back up with a slash, cutting the anchor in two. The Dagger ejected the anchor and charged forward with its sword, slamming it against the scythe痴 blade and pushing the Forbidden back again.

Murderers! Orga screamed, as a beam barrage from the Calamity blew away three more Strike Daggers. The remaining few moved in with their beam sabers an instant later, the Raider came down between them to shoot down two more. The remaining two turned their firepower on the Raider, only to be cut down a moment later by the Calamity痴 ram cannons.

典hey池e down! Orga shouted. 鼎lotho, take the ship out!

The Raider flashed up into the sky in mobile armor mode, firing wildly at the desperate Wyoming. Down below, the Sword 105 Dagger turned to pursue a moment later, the Forbidden痴 scythe tore it in half, and took off towards the Wyoming.

On the Wyoming痴 bridge, Fredrik pointed furiously at the approaching Gundams.

Shoot them down! he roared. Don稚 let them get close!

釘ut sir, our mobile suits have been destroyed! one of the bridge crew cried back.

FIRE! Fredrik screamed. FIRE AT WILL!

The Wyoming痴 guns blazed to life, sending the three Gundams scattering.

展e can稚 get close unless we take out those guns! Orga grunted, as a pair of beams slammed into the Calamity痴 shield. 泥ammit!

The Forbidden rocketed ahead, beams flying off its Geschmeidig Panzer, and reared back with its scythe to cut off the Wyoming痴 ventral beam cannon turret. The Calamity ducked through another blaze of beam shots, blowing the Wyoming痴 starboard catapult off with its Scylla cannon and crushing another turret with a bazooka shell. The Raider stormed through a wave of machinegun fire, blasting back with its own cannons and tearing chunks out of the Wyoming痴 hull. Clotho lunged up to the bridge, the Raider reverting back to mobile suit mode. On the bridge, he saw Fredrik staring up at the Raider in horror.

With a scream, Clotho drove the hammer down into the Wyoming痴 bridge tower.

The ship痴 engine block flashed as the Calamity pierced it with another Scylla shot, and with a thunderous explosion, the Wyoming broke in two, arms of fire spilling out the shattered hull.

The Calamity, Forbidden, and Raider backed away, watching the explosionand a moment later, exhaust flashing behind them, they took off into the darkness.

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To be continued...