Phase 11 - What War is All About

Mobile Suit Gundam SEED - Soldiers of Old

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Phase 11 - What War is All About

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July 11th, CE 73 - Manila, the Philippines

The ground shook under the feet of dozens of mobile suits, as they tramped down the streets of Manila, weapons in hand. Inside the Strike Noir, Sven Cal Bayan cast a grim glance over his two companions as they advanced. Behind the Strike Noir were three gleaming new Slaughter Daggers, manned by three grizzled Phantom Pain pilots, mobile armor veterans of Jachin Due. And if one could survive Jachin Due in a Mobius unit, then one was either very skilled or very, very lucky.

Standing on the banks of the Pasig River, Sven keyed in the frequency for the Slaughter Dagger pilots.

迭amon, he said, 鍍ake your team and fly over the city. Search from the air; we値l search from the ground.

迭oger, the leather-faced pilot answered. The three Slaughter Daggers leapt into the air and took off over the skyline.

Sven turned back towards the Verde Buster and Blu Duel. 典hey may be hiding and hoping to ambush us, he said.

添eah, yeah, Shams said. 鏑et痴 just go. They can稚 be that good.

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The Duel Gundam痴 cockpit was quiet and dark as it sank into the river. Yzak glanced up towards the surface there was a bridge overhead, large enough for a mobile suit to walk across. The enemy would undoubtedly be using it and so it made for a perfect ambush point. Surely they wouldn稚 think to go dredging the river.

But there were no enemies just yet. Yzak looked around at the dark silhouettes of the empty skyscrapers looming overhead. He glanced over at the Buster, waiting on the riverbed next to the Duel.

典here痴 no one in this city, he commented. 展eird.

典hey abandoned it during the Reconstruction War, Dearka explained. 敵as attack. Tends to clear people out in a hurry. So if you walk around long enough here, you値l probably find something unpleasant.

Yzak looked back up at the bridge. 展ell, something unpleasant is about to happen here anyway, he said. 滴opefully whoever is living here had the good sense to leave before we got here.

They both fell silent as something moved on the bank of the river. A Strike Dagger stepped onto the bridge, holding a bazooka, and cast a steely glance over the riverbank. Yzak glanced over at Dearka and nodded; a moment later, he squeezed off a railgun shot that lanced out of the river and slammed into the Dagger痴 head, knocking it off the bridge and into the water with a burst of fire.

The Duel Gundam lunged out of the river, landing with a crash on the bridge. Yzak snapped his beam rifle into position and opened fire, cutting down the three remaining Strike Daggers before they could react. He glanced back towards the river as the Buster Gundam rose from the water, climbing up onto the bridge.

的知 sure that値l get somebody痴 attention, Dearka said.

典oo late now, Yzak answered. 展e値l just run around the city and pick them off, one by one.

The Duel tramped forward, beam rifle at the ready, glancing around at the sound of mobile suit footsteps.

泥uck! Dearka shouted. Yzak instinctively threw the Duel Gundam to the ground and an instant later, a yellow beam tore over his head and slammed into another Strike Dagger down the street. 鉄hit, look at the scopeswe really pissed 粗m off now.

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Atlantic Federation battleship Mephistopheles

鼎aptain, Murphy reported from the CIC, 鍍he enemy ship is coming up in front of us, at 6000 meters.

Lee eyed the imposing silhouette of the Megami against the morning sky. They had repaired their damage well perhaps the Junk Guild was involved?

鼎aptain Todaka, Admiral Tapang, Lee said, glancing at the grim faces of both commanders. 的知 afraid we値l have to go this one alone. We値l try to lure the enemy into the range of your guns.

Tapang gave Lee a curt nod Lee nodded back, and the screen went dark.

迭onald, Lee added, glancing over at the weapons officer. 的知 aware that you can稚 easily control our ordnance once you discharge it. But I would rather appreciate it if you try to minimize the damage to the city.

添es sir, Ronald answered, looking somewhat taken aback. Lee looked back towards the Megami. That ship痴 captain was a skilled one, but Lee would not see himself defeated again.

展e池e in firing range, sir, Eric reported from the CIC. 典hey致e launched missiles!

的gelstellungs, open fire, Lee ordered. The Mephistopheles Igelstellung guns sprang to life, picking the Megami痴 missiles out of the sky before they could come close. Lee watched carefully as the Megami banked up into the air, leveling off its ventral Gottfried cannon. 滴ard to port! The Mephistopheles lurched aside as the Megami opened fire, its beam salvo barely missing. 敵ottfrieds, return fire!

The shots sailed by the Megami as it slowly pitched back down towards the ground. Lee watched his foe carefully as it swung around for another pass. One way or another, it would end here.

鉄ir, the Valiants are ready to fire! Ronald reported.

敵ood! Put a shot off their bow, pitch fifteen degrees! Lee answered. 展e値l push them towards the fleet, and they won稚 stand a chance! The Mephistopheles swung into position, Valiants at the ready. 天aliants, fire!

Twin railgun shells lanced out towards the Megami, which swept down towards the city to dodge them, and abruptly pulled up to avoid crashing into a skyscraper.

鉄ledgehammers, track them! Lee commanded. The Mephistopheles missile tubes roared, sending a flurry of missiles streaking down towards the fleeing Megami. Lee scowled as the Megami cut his missiles out of the sky with a CIWS burst of their own. 泥on稚 let them turn! Gottfrieds, keep them on their current course!

The Gottfrieds blazed, pounding a quartet of thick, pulsing beam shots by the Megami痴 sides. The Valiants fired again over the Megami痴 top, forcing it to descend. An instant later, it banked aside to dodge another skyscraper and this time the Megami痴 portside wing plowed through the skyscraper, sending the top of the tower tumbling down into the street with a cloud of dust in its wake.

典here痴 nothing they can do now! Lee shouted. 典hey池e on their way to the fleet! Stay on them!

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Athrun cursed as the Justice Gundam quaked, pounded by a volley of missiles. A trio of Dagger Ls charged towards him, beam carbines drawn, and opened fire Athrun slapped the shots aside with his beam rifle and took off towards the city surface, weaving in between the skyscrapers. The Daggers followed at a cautious distance, slamming beam shots into the towers and showering the Justice with glass and debris.

泥ammit, Athrun grunted, 鍍hese guys are persistent

The Justice whirled around to squeeze off a shot towards the Daggers. They split up to dodge the shot, firing back with their own beam rifles. Athrun somersaulted into the air, barely passing over another tower. He cut the engines as he did, landing on top of the tower and falling to one knee, taking cover behind a faded billboard. The Daggers fired again Athrun protected himself behind his shield as the shots lanced through the billboard. The Daggers roared by over he Justice痴 head, turning around for another pass before they could, Athrun squeezed off a single beam shot to take out one of the Dagger Ls, blasting it out of the sky with a flash of fire.

典wo more, he muttered. The Justice vaulted into the air to dodge the remaining two Daggers return shots, racing up into the air. One of the Daggers charged up after him, drawing its beam saber and stabbing forward towards the Justice痴 cockpit. Athrun expertly parried the blow with his shield but an instant later, the second Dagger lunged up over the Justice痴 head, beam carbine leveled.

Athrun narrowed his eyes and kicked off the first Dagger痴 shield, roaring backwards to dodge the second Dagger痴 finishing volley. The first one reeled under the force of the Justice痴 kick Athrun seized his chance and squeezed off a beam rifle shot of his own, drilling it through the Dagger痴 cockpit and wiping it out with a blaze. Before the second Dagger could react, the Justice went rocketing up into the air, CIWS guns blazing, and tore the Dagger痴 carbine from its hand.

Now what?! Athrun snapped, as the Dagger drew its saber and charged. Athrun backed away, switching to his own beam saber, and brought it down with a crash on the Dagger痴 shield. The Justice rocked as the Dagger slammed its own saber viciously against the Justice痴 shield, nearly pushing it back.

The Dagger surged forward, pushing the Justice back and raising its saber to attack again. Athrun charged, seizing his opportunity, and drove his own saber through the Dagger痴 cockpit, slicing it in two at the waist.

The bisected Dagger exploded behind Athrun as he deactivated his saber and took up his beam rifle again. He glanced towards the harbor, where the Megami was under fire from the Mephistopheles but more beam fire distracted him. He glanced over his shoulder at a pair of charging Dagger Ls, and took off towards them.

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A withering barrage of artillery shells pounded into the building over Cagalli痴 head, raining shrapnel down on the Strike Rouge. She ducked underneath her shield and leveled off her bazooka, firing back a shell of her own but down the street, the two Doppelhorn Dagger Ls firing on her leapt apart, and her shell slammed into another building behind them.

泥ammit, she growled, 鍍hey池e gonna bring the whole city down on me! An ominous creaking sound rumbled up from behind the Rouge she looked over her shoulder in shock as the skyscraper began to topple forward over its demolished base. 鉄hit!

The Strike Rouge dove aside as the building came down with a crash, casting a pall of dust over the battlefield. Cagalli quickly scrambled to her feet, taking cover behind her shield as more debris pelted the Rouge mercilessly.

Another volley of shells slammed into her from her unprotected side, knocking her backward. She looked around urgently for her attackers, but the dust was too thick to see anything.

典hey池e gonna kill me at this rate! she snapped. The Strike Rouge whirled around and ducked into the ruined foundation of the skyscraper an instant later, the ground gave way beneath her, plunging her down into the darkness.

Cagalli shook her head and glanced around her surroundings. It seemed to be an underground parking garage, but appropriately, it looked as though it had just had a high-rise knocked over on top of it. It had enough levels to allow her machine some semblance of movement, but the margin for error was thin. And as she peered through the darkness, there wasn稚 much to hide behind.

泥amn this thing, she grumbled. 撤ink is about the least camouflaging color I can think of.

The Strike Rouge took cover behind a fallen pillar. Cagalli glanced down at her bazooka and ejected one of the empty clips, leaving her with three more clips, eighteen shells. She looked back up at the sound of mobile suits the Doppelhorn Daggers were descending into the ruined garage, gingerly stepping around fallen debris and glancing around, beam carbines at the ready.

展ell, she said to herself, 塗opefully this won稚 be too hard

Cagalli raised her bazooka the Daggers glanced over at her. She clenched her teeth as they trained their guns on her

An instant later, she engaged the Aile pack痴 booster and fired her bazooka, plowing a shell into the creaking ceiling and rocketing out of the garage. A thunderous crash rang through the air as the garage, and the thousands of tons of concrete hanging overhead, came smashing downand two more blasts signaled the end of the two Daggers.

Cagalli whirled around, landing with a crash as the building collapsed into its own basement, and heaved a sigh of relief.

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展ell, maybe I知 getting too close, Andy grunted as the Aegis Gundam rocked under a hail of debris. He glanced around at his surroundings he was in Manila痴 massive port, being shot at by a handful of vessels in the harbor. One of them, a Kuraokami-class cruiser by the looks of it, was getting awfully close, gleefully shredding the port痴 rusting equipment with blasts from its twin deck cannon.

Andy scowled through the flying shrapnel and opened fire on the ship as he leapt out of the shadow of a large crane. The ship pelted him in return with CIWS shots, as his own beam blast was knocked wide of the ship.

的 got a better idea anyway, he muttered, rocketing away from the vessel. He swung his beam rifle into position and squeezed off a shot at the base of the crane a cloud of fire rose up around it, knocking it over, and with a sickening crash, it slammed down along the length of the cruiser痴 hull, silencing it.

Andy allowed himself a satisfied smile as he landed in front of a warehouse. A wave of missiles came down around him the Aegis leapt backwards behind its shield, firing back with its CIWS guns to cut down a second wave. Andy looked up in surprise and found four black Jet Dagger Ls cruising towards him, beam carbines in hand.

添ou guys again, he grumbled.

Across the harbor, inside his Dark Dagger L, Rico Barbosa flashed a grin. 典here he is, he cackled. 的致e been looking forward to this! Carlos, Kingston, Oliver, let痴 go!

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Orb Raiders dreadnaught Megami

滴ard to port! Murrue shouted. 摘vasive action!

The Megami groaned in protest as the ship strained to dodge a vicious hail of artillery shells. Down below, in the harbor, a flotilla of warships from the Equatorial Union and the Orb Navy were blasting away at the Megami as it desperately twisted out of their line of fire. Murrue cast an urgent glance back at the Mephistopheles as it cruised in after them, Gottfrieds blasting away furiously.

泥ammit, she growled, 鍍hey致e got us trapped! The Megami quaked under a near miss from an anti-ship missile. 鄭nd that Archangel is still on our tail!

典wo Aegis-class approaching from starboard! Chandra exclaimed. 鼎aptain

典urn us to starboard and target the enemy fleet! Murrue snapped. The bridge crew blinked disbelievingly at her. 展e値l fight them head on! They won稚 see it coming!

鼎aptain, I can稚 dodge dozens of guns at one time with this ship! Neumann protested.

展ell, you値l have to try! Murrue shot back. 典hey致e set up their attack so wellmove us into firing range!

The Megami banked hard to the right, swiveling its Gottfried cannons into position. A pair of Fraser frigates, flanked by a Danilov destroyer and a Kuraokami cruiser.

典argets acquired! Romero announced.

Murrue eyed the four ships carefully for a moment they would make for a good enough start. Fire!

The four Gottfrieds blazed, pummeling the four ships and sending the two Fraser-class frigates and the Kuraokami-class straight to the bottom of the harbor. The Danilov listed helplessly for a moment under the force of the blasts, before a second shot from the ventral Gottfried blasted it apart.

The rest of the fleet momentarily fell silent Murrue looked back up towards the rest of the ships as they sat waiting in the harbor. Another volley of Gottfried shots sailed over the Megami the Mephistopheles came roaring in from behind, guns blazing.

迭eturn fire against the Archangel-class! she ordered. 展e値l take another pass at the fleet later!

The Megami banked again towards the Mephistopheles. Murrue glanced back at the fleet, and then back at the enemy in front of her there was far too much riding on this for her to fail again.

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Another M1 Astray went down in flames and died with a thunderous blast as Mwu whirled around, beam rifle in hand, and picked it off from across the street. The remaining Strike Daggers and M1s scattered, ducking behind their shields as the debris of their comrades rained down on them.

釘eaten by a two-year-old machine, Mwu chuckled. 展haddya boys have to say for yourselves?

A beam shot from a Strike Dagger came back in reply. Mwu slapped it aside with his shield, returning fire with his own rifle and picking the Dagger off before it could react. The blast rattled a nearby skyscraper, and with a hideous screech, it began to collapse in on itself, coming down with a crash on top of the Daggers and M1s. One of the M1s staggered out of the dust cloud Mwu leveled off his rifle and fired, picking it off before it could raise its own beam rifle.

The street fell silent for a moment, and Mwu risked a look around. Overhead, the smoke and blasts from the air battle were still peppering the sky, but from that alone, there was no telling how that battle was going. And the mobile suits on the ground had all assumed radio silence in order to get the jump as much as possible among their numerous foes, all of whom were trying to coordinate a search, and being blown up in the process.

Also of note was the strange thinning of the ranks of Manila痴 skyscraper forest. Mwu supposed that a mobile suit melee in a crowded urban zone would do that, but hopefully any inhabitants were already somewhere safebecause Manila certainly was not.

Another M1 Astray emerged from behind another building; the Strike vaulted up into the air and fired back down with its beam rifle, picking off the M1 from above. Mwu shook his head, wondering if they were getting anywhere.

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泥on稚 get in my way! Yzak snapped, as the Duel Gundam drove its beam saber into a Strike Dagger痴 cockpit to the hilt. The impaled machine staggered back, and Yzak turned away to deflect another shot as the Dagger exploded. A second Dagger opened fire from down the street, but an instant later, it was blown away by a beam shot from the Buster Gundam.

展e致e blown up a couple dozen of these things, Dearka grunted, scanning the area for more enemies. 典hey値l run out sooner or later!

Yzak whirled around as a third Dagger emerged from around a building, but it fell to a railgun shell from the Duel before it could open fire. He turned again as the alarms blared, and instinct took over as he leapt away from the Buster, seeing it do likewise.

Both Gundams landed with a crash and looked up towards the top of yet another building, where, standing with arms spread and beam guns deployed and trained on the Duel and Buster, stood the Blu Duel.

Inside, Mudie scowled down at the two mobile suits. 典here you are, she sneered. 添ou致e been causing a lot of trouble.

Yzak narrowed his eyes at the Blu Duel it immediately fired both its beam guns at the Duel, and Yzak leapt backwards to dodge the blasts, returning fire with his beam rifle. The Blu Duel vaulted off the top of the building after the Duel.

添zak! Dearka shouted. He combined his rifles and took aim at the Blu Duel, but a pair of beam shots from above forced him back, and he looked up in disbelief back at the building.

Inside the Verde Buster, Shams grinned triumphantly. 哲ot so fast, wannabe, he laughed. 添ou池e tangoing with me.

Dearka clenched his teeth as he scanned over the Verde Buster. 展hat the hell is this!? he exclaimed. 鄭n upgraded Buster?!

Shams grinned as the Verde Buster stepped forward, positioning itself at the edge of the roof and combining his beam rifles. 釘esides, he added, 的致e been looking forward to a good fight.

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Equatorial Union Spengler-class aircraft carrier Sukarno

Tapang cursed under his breath as the Sukarno rocked under a near miss by one of the Megami痴 massive anti-ship missiles.

鄭dmiral! one of the officers cried. 典he Colombo is reporting heavy damage!

的 know! Tapang snapped. 徹rder the ships to evade at flank speed! We can稚 afford to lose anymore ships!

He glared up at the Megami as it soared over his fleet, spewing firepower into the water and towards his desperate, writhing warships. Its mobile suits were somewhere in Manila, but

Another one of his Fraser-class frigates was split in two by a winnowing beam cannon blast from the Megami, and vanished beneath the waves with a flash of fire. Tapang cursed again.

鄭dmiral, the Mekong has been sunk! one of the officers reported. 典he enemy ship is targeting the Mumbai!

Tapang shot a bitter glance towards the Orb fleet. The Yatenkou had yet to take a significant hit, but several of Todaka痴 ships were already at the bottom of the harbor. And the Mephistopheles didn稚 appear to be having any better luck despite its dogged pursuit of the Megami, the enemy痴 superior maneuverability and firepower was making minced meat of the combined Equatorial and Orb fleets.

And, he added angrily, there was the John Paul Jones, which had disgorged its mobile suits and then crawled back for the safety of distance, waiting offshore for Tapang to ride his flagship into the depths. He scowled over at the Atlantic Federation carrier, wondering why they weren稚 braving the enemy痴 fire.

徹rders, sir?! one of the officers asked.

Tapang looked back at the Megami as it passed by overhead, dodging fire from the Orb fleet. 溺ove the Dhaka in behind them and fire at their engines! Tapang shouted.

Inexorably, as the Megami swung over the battlefield, the Danilov-class destroyer swerved to follow. Its forward cannon boomed, and a shell lanced by the Megami痴 starboard engine but an instant later, a blast from its ventral beam cannon vaporized the destroyer痴 bow, taking its main cannon with it.

泥ammit! Tapang growled. 鼎ontinue a barrage with the CIWS! We値l wear that armor down yet!

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The ground quaked as Mwu finished off another Strike Dagger with his beam saber, shoving the sparking corpse away. It toppled backwards into the Pasig River and exploded, throwing a column of water into the air and bringing it back down like rain. The Strike Gundam leapt up again to dodge a beam barrage from a pair of M1 Astrays; Mwu switched to his beam rifle and speared them both on a pair of beam shots, coming back down with a crash and whirling around to shoot down one last Strike Dagger.

Mwu glanced around at his surroundings again. He had the Pasig River on his right, leading towards the sea; he was somewhere on the south side of the river. Through the towers of steel and towers of smoke, he could make out a thick black cloud rising from the sea, and for a moment, he saw the Megami pass over the ocean, pursued tenaciously by the Mephistopheles.

鉄hit, he grunted, 的壇 better go help them

A pair of beam blasts came down at his feet, pushing the Strike Gundam back. Mwu took cover behind his shield, raising his rifle, and down the street he saw the forbidding shape of another mobile suit.

展ait a minute, he muttered, 鍍hat痴 not like the others

Down the street, inside the Strike Noir, with one beam pistol-toting arm outstretched, Sven Cal Bayan narrowed his eyes at the Strike Gundam.

典arget acquired, he said tonelessly. The Strike Noir opened fire again the Strike Gundam jetted to the side. Inside the Strike, Mwu blinked in surprise as the Strike Noir lunged through an opening, firing with two beam pistols.

撤istols?! he exclaimed, deflecting the shots with his shield and firing back with his rifle. The Strike Noir rocketed aside and continued its beam barrage. 泥ammit! He doesn稚 even have a shield! The Strike ducked behind a building as beam shots ripped up the street and the adjacent high-rise. 滴e痴 fast!

More beam shots ripped through the building the Strike was taking cover behind, so Mwu leapt out into the open behind his shield. A hail of beam shots landed against it; Mwu fired to the side, into the street next to the Noir, forcing it to leap aside.

Mwu watched his foe carefully as it landed, and swung both its beam pistols back into position.

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擢our against one is hardly fair! Andy yelled as the Aegis went into a nosedive, pulling up before it crashed and skimming along the grounds of Manila痴 port. Up above, the four Jet Dagger Ls fired viciously with their beam carbines, shredding the ground in the Aegis痴 wake.

泥amn him! Barbosa shouted. 滴e can稚 keep dodging forever! Carlos, Oliver, flank the fucker!

Two of the Daggers peeled off and widened their formation around the other two Andy ducked another volley of beam shots and dove down into the port痴 cargo area. Barbosa showered the cargo pallets with CIWS fire; Andy returned fire from the momentary safety of a towering stack of cargo crates. Kingston opened fire with his own beam carbine, ripping the crates apart as the Aegis leapt clear.

鼎arlos, Oliver, go! Barbosa screamed, as his Dagger poured firepower after the Aegis. Andy flashed a grin as the Aegis dove backwards. Oliver痴 Dagger came screaming in from the right Andy whirled around to face it, igniting the beam saber on the Aegis痴 right foot and slicing through a towering cargo crane with a roundhouse kick. The crane came down with a crash on top of Oliver痴 Dagger, tearing off its Jet Striker and right arm as it staggered under the weight.

典oo late! Andy shouted he squeezed off a single beam rifle shot, drilling it through the cockpit of Oliver痴 Dagger and wiping it out with a blaze.

泥ammit! Barbosa shouted. 鼎arlos, Kingston, form up! We値l get him back for Oliver!

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展here am I? Cagalli murmured as the Strike Rouge looked around tensely for enemies. 典he river痴 over there

Something in the air exploded Cagalli looked up.

展ell, I can always go up there, she said. The Strike Rouge vaulted up to the top of a skyscraper, whirling around to face the sea, and watching the Megami take on the Orb and Equatorial fleets.

Beam shots came down around her Cagalli looked up sharply, finding three mobile suits streaking down towards her.

Inside the leading Slaughter Dagger, a wicked grin came to Ramon痴 lined face. 釘ill, Martin, he said, 鍍hat痴 one of their MS. Form up and we値l take it down together.

迭oger, they answered.

Down below, Cagalli steeled herself and drew her beam rifle as the Slaughter Daggers opened fire again. She leapt up off the skyscraper痴 roof as the beams came down, and took off into the air, firing back. The Daggers split their formation to dodge her shots with practiced ease and returned fire.

泥ammit, Cagalli grunted, 電on稚 tell me they池e not just grunts! She cut the thrusters to plunge back towards the city the Daggers followed.

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It seemed as though the very air was on fire as the Justice Gundam sailed through the sky, scanning for enemies. Most of the mobile suits left were on the ground, but those that were still in the air were resolutely refusing to go down. And the Megami was effectively deprived of mobile suits, forcing it to rely on its own devices in fending off several other ships.

Athrun glanced around anxiously, waiting for another attack. The Dagger Ls seemed to be withdrawing under the firepower of the Murasames, but they were far from finished. And there was still

A beam shot slammed into the tower next to the Justice. Athrun swung his shield up into position, alighting on top of an adjacent tower and scanning the skies. Floating above him, beam rifle raised, was the Diablo Gundam.

笛ust as I thought, Athrun growled. 典his is the last time I知 going to fight you!

The Diablo charged; inside, Jack痴 eyes flashed as he screamed, firing madly with his beam rifle.

添ou can稚 run now! he screamed. 添ou can never run! I値l kill you first!

The Justice somersaulted off the tower and took off into the air, firing back with its beam rifle. Letting loose a blood-chilling shriek, Jack blasted off after him.

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To be concluded