The moon hung low in the sky, shining brightly over the Ta-matoran camp. Tents were lined up in neat rows right up beside the mountains of the Spine. In the middle of camp there was a glowing bonfire, casting a warm orange glow all the way to the very edges, where the night watchmen paced.
Sukiru stirred restlessly in his tent. No matter what he tried, he couldn’t get to sleep.
“Ugh, this won’t do. Come on, fall asleep already!” He scolded himself. As one of the most skilled warriors in the entire Kom caste, he was expected to take point in tomorrow's march. He needed to be well rested. But sleep wouldn’t come, as if some sixth sense was preventing him from dropping his guard. He sat up and went to his weapons.
“Guess it couldn’t hurt to do a little more practice, if I’m not sleeping anyway.” He picked up his Hino-Kyen* and went outside.
Nodding to a nearby guard, he walked till he stood beside the campfire and drew his sword, feeling the familiar thrill run through his body. His weapons were special, passed down through his family for many generations, and every time he touched them, he could almost feel the spirit of his grandfather. His sword’s lower blade was forged into a wave pattern, specially designed to damage enemy weapons. His ‘shield’ was little more than a large gauntlet with spiked knuckles and a long piece of metal to cover his forearm, but it didn’t hinder his movement like a normal shield would.
As he went through his stances and thrusting forms, another figure walked into the firelight. Sukiru raised an eyebrow behind his mask as he saw who it was.
“Kapura, eh? What a surprise to see you.”
“I saw you practicing, so I thought I’d come see how you were.” Kapura answered, voice lacking the harsh edge it normally carried.
“Pretty late for you to be awake.”
“Do remember that you’re not only awake, but the reason I came out here in the first place.” Yep, that edge was back.
“No need to get defensive, now!” Sukiru said, grimacing. “I was just curious, that’s all. It’s true I’m normally asleep too, but tonight…”
Kapura cocked his head inquisitively.
“I can’t shake this feeling, like something bad’s about to happen.”
That’s when the ground started shaking, and the alarm bells started ringing.
“HELP! IT’S THE ONU! THE ONU ARE ATTACKING!” A guard was yelling, his voice abruptly cut off.
“Karz!” Kapura growled, running back towards his tent. “It’s a night raid!”
Sukiru paled. This could be a massacre if the Kom couldn’t mobilize quickly. He gritted his teeth.
“Guess it’s up to me to buy some time.” He charged towards where the shouting was coming from as the camp quickly began to stir, soldiers already starting to come out of their tents, weapons in hand.
He skidded to a halt at the edge of the camp.
“Oh Meiyo’s ghost…”
It was an army of the Onu-matoran, heavily armed and armored. The guards were about to be overwhelmed, already they were getting through the defenses, several flares of red light indicating his fallen brothers-in-arms.
Sukiru shifted into a battle ready stance.
“Alright then, let’s see what you Onu got!” He yelled at the top of his voice. One of them, black armor gleaming, came at him with a longsword and kite shield. Sukiru dodged his thrust and countered with a lightning quick jab. His sword punched through the Onu’s neck, and he fell with a strangled gurgle, a brief burst of purple light as his energy escaped his body.
Two more rushed him with axes, swinging wildly. Sukiru ducked down and spun, armored fist knocking them over. Two more quick thrusts and they moved no more. But more were coming quickly, and he was slowly being forced back. He blocked and parried a couple more sword swipes, sparks flying. He ducked another one and took a step forward, bringing his fist into the stomach of another opponent. It went through his armor like paper, and Sukiru felt his fist hit the back armor, purple light blazing out of the wound for a moment. The unlucky Onu gasped and went silent, and Sukiru whirled the body around, using it to hold off the press of foes. They jumped around him, dodging around his makeshift shield and sword thrusts.
Then, Sukiru felt the earth shift beneath him. The cadaver hindered his balance, and another tremor threw him to the ground.
“Ah, Karz.” Sukiru was pinned beneath the body as the Onu swung their swords downward…
Sukiru started at the familiar sound as a ball of green flame flew over his head. A small explosion threw his assailants every which way.
“Reckless fool.” Yep, that was definitely Kapura.
Sukiru looked around to see Kapura putting another round into his flamethrower (which he called the Skadi). All around him other Tay were rushing into the fray.
“Thanks, friend.” He said, picking himself up. Kapura just rolled his eyes.
“You just get back to stabbing people, and no more falling down.”
The battle wasn’t going well.
Sure, Sukiru and Kapura had managed to rally a troop and were standing strong, but the rest of the camp was in disarray, and it was beginning to look like a rout.
Another bolt of green fire slammed into the enemy lines. Sukiru ran into the brief opening, a whirlwind of destruction, before jumping away as they regrouped and recovered. Most of the other Tay were holding a spear line.
Individually, the Onu were rather weak fighters, but as an army they moved with unison and purpose, quickly adapting and responding to any threat with a unity that - as much as Sukiru hated to admit - was far superior to even the Kom. Already they saw where Kapura was aiming and quickly put up a shield wall.
“Karz, we can’t keep this up forever! We need a new strategy!”
“I’m open to suggestions.” Growled Kapura, firing another shot and cursing when it was blocked.
And then the ground shook once more, sending matoran from both sides tumbling to the ground. There was a great clatter and clang, and a new problem walked into view:
Yeela, Toa of the Earth.
Standing almost twice as tall as a matoran, the ebon and orange giant wore a great suit of armor covered in dozens of different weapons. Dozens more flew through the air around her, like a true whirlwind of destruction. The Onu fell back around her, confident that their champion would crush all their foes. To be fair, they weren’t far off.
Sukiru took a deep breath, shaking a little despite himself. He’d seen Yeela in action, though never up close like this. They were pretty much doomed.
“Everyone, start falling back, but maintain formation! I’ll see if I can’t slow her down.”
“Slow me down?” Yeela exclaimed incredulously. “You won’t even get close.”
“We’ll see about that!” Sukiru yelled and took off.
Axes came from the sides, spears flew towards him, and a massive hammer was coming in from above. Sukiru dropped and rolled under the spears, jumping up and blocking a stray sword. He spun away from a hammer blow, lightly leapt above an axe strike, and danced around another spear thrust.
Yeela merely smirked and waved her hands. All the weapons hanging on her armor rose up into the air and flew after him.
Karz, she’s controlling the weapons like some sort of puppeteer without even breaking a sweat! I need to finish this fast!
Yet try as he might, the onslaught of flying weapons was too great. Spinning, leaping and dodging just to stay alive, there was no way for him to move farther.
“Looks like I was right. And as fun as this is, I think it’s time we stopped kidding ourselves.” The weapons increased in speed, and it was only a matter of time before he slipped up and got skewered. Well then, better make the best of it. He thought, and began moving forward. A sword clipped him in the side. He grimaced but kept moving forward. Only five steps away…
An axe hit his right shoulder, splitting through the armor and tearing deep. His shield arm was now useless.
Only four steps away…
A spear flew straight through his left leg. He gasped in pain and nearly fell, but limped forward.
Two steps away…
A great hammer, spinning through the maelstrom of weapons, hit his chest so hard he felt his armor caving in around it, tearing up his insides.
Darkness spread around the edges of his vision, his hands and feet were trembling as his strength began to fade.
“Only one chance, I can’t mess up now!” Sukiru took the last two steps before beginning to fall forward, swinging at Yeela’s side with all his remaining strength.
It bounced off her armor without leaving a scratch.
Sukiru collapsed onto the ground, feeling his life ebb away.
“SUKIRU!” He heard someone yell, echoing as if from far away.
A shame my last deed ended in failure. I’m sorry friends… Then a curious thing happened. A massive wave of heat rolled over him, accompanied by a bright light.
“What the-?” Yeela yelled, stumbling backwards.
Sukiru tensed as the light flew into him, and he felt his armor mend and his injuries disappear. Strength was returning to him! But how? Sukiru shakily got to his feet and turned around.
Grillon, Toa of Fire.
Heat rolled off of him in waves, and his flame-red armor shone like the sun. He held no weapon, but it didn’t seem like he needed one.
“Yeela. Hate to be the one to say this, But I think you’ve overstayed your welcome.”
“Hah! You’ll have to make me leave!”
While the Toa traded insults, Sukiru could see more beams of light radiating from Grillon to all the Tay, healing their injuries and bringing them back from the brink of death. When that was done, Grillon interrupted Yeela and turned to Sukiru.
“Sorry I was late. You’ve been through the ringer, but I’m about to need your help. Be ready for my signal.”
Sukiru wasn’t completely sure what that meant, but he saluted anyway.
Grillon smiled and held out his hands, gathering all the heat and light into a steadily growing flame.
“Last warning, Yeela!” The Onu-Toa only scowled and shifted into battle stance.
And that’s when he moved. There was no other word for it. Sukiru had thought of himself as quick on his feet, but Grillon was on a whole other level. Almost too fast for his eyes to catch, Grillon had passed through the layer of weapons and landed a punch on her side. Sukiru expected it to have no effect, but Yeela cried out in pain. He blinked, and when his eyes finished opening, Grillon was already beside him, glowing brightly as a series of wounds up and down his side quickly disappeared.
Of course. Sukiru had known Grillon fought by splitting fire into heat and light, but had never understood what it meant. He had used the light to somehow heal, as well as accelerate his movements. He had focused the heat into his fists, so his punches could melt through armor. He was quite possibly the worst opponent Yeela could have ever faced.
Grillon ran around the Onu-Toa, landing punches faster than the eye could follow. He backflipped backwards, out of the range of weapons.
“Alright, time for me to stop showing off.”
The air shimmered around Yeela, and she fell to her knees, gasping.
“W-what’s happening to her?” Sukiru asked.
“I’ve focused all of my heat energy into a cube around her. I’ve been told it’s most unpleasant, but Yeela’s strong. This won’t be quite enough to stop her.” And as he spoke, Yeela managed to stand up. Her armor glowed a dull red, but not the same way as Grillon’s: it was starting to soften and melt.
It was obviously painful, but she took another step forward. And another. Many of her weapons had already melted, and the armor looked like a searing hot shell of magma. Grillon grunted with effort, standing perfectly still and focusing more energy on her, but she kept walking slowly towards him.
She pulled back her arm, and suddenly leapt forward, delivering a devastating right hook to his jaw. Grillon hit the ground and bounced, rolling on the ground till he came to a painful stop at the foot of a rock.
“NOW!” He yelled.
Now Sukiru understood. He ran close and stabbed his sword into her stomach. This time, the melting armor offered no resistance. Yeela gasped and fell to the ground, a silvery ichor leaking out of her wound. Grillon stood up and dusted himself off.
“Listen closely Yeela, I won’t be repeating myself. That wound was fatal. Unless I heal you, you will die. Now, I don’t want any more death than necessary, so if you agree to fall back, I’ll heal you. Deal?”
Yeela glared at him, hatred written on her face.
*Hino-Kyen is the ceremonial name for custom weapons inherited from the father’s line.
Restless marks the last of our teasers for Bionicle Eternal. Starting next week, we will begin releasing chapters of the main story. However, due to a seeming lack of interest on previous teasers, further story updates will not be posted here on TTV. If you have a problem with that, let us know, and maybe we'll change it. Regardless, this is Jayzor17: thank you for reading.