Dark times, chapter 1.
It was a late evening in Metru-nui. Usually at this time, matoran would be moving around from place to place, scurrying around as they do; however tonight was different. The streets were empty. No matoran with a brain in his head would be out at these times, for Makuta ruled over Metru-nui. It happened around a month ago, when the Toa nuva believed they had resurrected Mata-nui, it turned out that Makuta managed to gain control over the universe in that time. When all of the matoran and Toa were gathered in the great coliseum for celebration, Makuta revealed himself as the ruler of the universe. Hordes of rahkshi swarmed the coliseum, forcing the Toa to flee, and imprisoning the Turaga. The matoran now worked for Makuta, laboring to keep him functioning in various protodermis mines. Any matoran who would get “tired” or refuse to work would be executed.
Detru, a le-matoran of course knew that he was out in the city past the curfew time, and any one out past curfew time would be killed, but in his case, he was running for his life. He had just come back from a meeting with other matoran of a resistance group, planning strategies to take down the rahkshi barrack near his region of Le-metru. He was running back to his home and was barely able to avoid patrols of rahkshi, and was almost caught. He was close now, and he was just a few dozen meters away from his home.
Almost there… he thought to himself as he approached his hut, but he did not realise the metal pole shoved right in front of his face. He tripped and fell to the ground, only realising a few moments later that it was a rahkshi that had close lined him. The pain he felt was immense. Two rahkshi lingered over him. One picked him up, and delivered a solid punch right in his gut. Pain shot up his body.
“A little late to be outside?” questioned one of the rahkshi.
“Let’s have a little bit of fun with this one before killing him” replied the other
Detru knew that this was most likely the end of his existence. Either he would die here, or be tortured for the rest of his life in one of makuta’s dungeons. He decided that if he was going to die, he would take these rahkshi with him.
While the rahkshi were distracted, he reached in his pouch and felt a leaf like substance. When grinded, it would explode, taking both Detru and the two rahkshi with him. He began to grind the plant like substance with his fingers when suddenly, the rahkshi dropped him.
“Did you hear that?” asked one of the rahkshi.
“Go check it out, I will stay with the vermin” said the other.
It was pitch black outside. The only thing providing light was a lamp post and even then, it was hazy. The rahkshi walked towards the sound, and Detru saw him disappear into the darkness. The only thing he heard was the sound of scraping metal, and a hissing noise.
What on Mata-nui was that? Detru asked himself. The next thing he saw was the head of a rahkshi scrape along the floor towards him.
Did somebody manage to kill it?
“Who are you? Show you!” demanded the other rahkshi.
The being that appeared in the light was a tall female, clad in blue and green armor, holding a wicked looking scythe, from which the rahkshi antidermis was dripping from. Detru’s eyes widened. He knew that this was a toa. He could not believe it, he thought all of the toa where off the island and hiding.
The other rahkshi charged the Toa, but before he could reach her, he felt his body’s weight increase, so much so that he could no longer move. He struggled, but felt the gravity increase so much that it became painful. The next thing Detru saw was a silver and black Toa, jump from the rooftop. A combined blast of both lightning and fire struck the rahkshi from the rear. When Detru looked behind him, he saw a Toa of fire, and a Toa of lightning standing behind him. Finally, a Toa of plasma jumped down from a rooftop and dealt a finishing blow to the now wounded rahkshi.
“We got him good” said the Toa of gravity, “now what about the matoran”
The Toa of gravity approached Detru and gave him his hand to help the matoran stand up. “tha-thanks a lot” stuttered Detru, he was shaking with anxiety.
“Tell your friends that Makuta have not killed every single Toa yet” replied the Toa of gravity. “Tell them that he has something else coming for him”.
Detru quickly got to his feet and ran off. When he returned to his hut, he found that he could not sleep. Who were these toa? And why where they only showing themselves now? They clearly were not the toa nuva, and how would he explain this to his friends? So many questions.
The next day when Detru was working, he tried to tell a few of his resistance group members about the toa. “What are you talking about?” they asked him
“We all know that all of the toa are now in hiding! Why would they show themselves in the one single place with the most rahkshi?” they would argue.
Occasionally, the rahkshi would come see what was taking this group of matoran so long, and would give them a few lashes for being slow. They were mining valuable resources for the Makuta, so slowing down work was not allowed. Matoran that would refuse to work where killed in front of a crowd to make an example for the rest.
Despite how many times Detru told his fellow resistance members about the toa, they would not listen, and just thought he hit his head a bit too hard. Days have passed by, and Detru still had no idea where this team of toa was. Eventually, he decided to give up on the idea, and focus on not being killed. The following day, members of his resistance group were planning to destroy their current mining instillation. Detru decided to help with this plan. There were about 4 dozen matoran working at this station, and their plan was to explode a part of the protodermis mine, and when the rahkshi would go to investigate, ambush them with smuggled weapons from the rear. Detru’s job was to mine until the explosion, and help the rest of the matoran fight off the rahkshi. They hoped that by doing this, other matoran would rise up and face their enemies.
Detru saw one of his comrades enter the mine with a mine cart, in this cart was the smuggled weapons that would be crucial for the plan. This was the most important part: to persuade the rahkshi to allow the mine cart to pass. The matoran approached the rahkshi. A tarp was over the cart to hide its contents. “What is in the cart?” questioned the guards
“Some ores and supplies coming from area 39” replied the matoran.
Detru was shaking in fear. If the rahkshi found the weapons, they would begin to crackdown and most likely kill all the matoran suspected to be in this operation. Although it took only a few seconds for the guard to respond, it felt like hours. It was one of the longest periods of time in Detru’s life. “Alright go on through to area 24, vermin.” the rahkshi answered in a harsh and unforgiving tone. Detru sighed in relief. Now it was time for the rest of the matoran to blow up part of the mine. It should happen any second now… Suddenly, an explosion ripped through the mine, killing half a dozen rahkshi. The rest of the rahkshi rushed over to see what the commotion was. Now was the most important time of all. One of the matoran yelled “for mata-nui!” and grabbed one of the weapons in the cart. It was a fully automatic shotgun type of weapon developed by the dark hunters for one of their former members known as ancient.
Detru grabbed one of those weapons and began firing at the rahkshi, while their backs were to the matoran. They managed to take down most of the rahkshi, but a few fought back and injured a handful of matoran. Still though, it was a success, and in a matter of minutes, the rahkshi were defeated. They began to cheer until they heard BOOM…BOOM…BOOM…BOOM… a very loud sound ripped through the mine. “What on mata-nui is that?” asked one of the matoran. As if to answer his question, 2 exo-toa suits of armor flew through the mine and began to approach the matoran. They fired their weapons, however to their distress, had no effect on the suits. That was when they began to mow down the matoran, as they fled the mine. Detru ran for his life, however seeing a handful of rahkshi come to reinforce the exo-toa, he decided to hide in one of the mine carts. He heard the sound of matoran yelling and dyeing all around him, and he could do nothing but wait and hide.
Suddenly, everything went silent, and the slaughter seemed to stop. When he looked out of his cart, he saw the same five toa from the other day charge the suits of exo toa armor. The toa of psionics created illusions to temporarily stop the rahkshi, while the toa of gravity brought down rocks from the ceiling of the mine crushing one of the suits. The toa of fire, armed with a sword and shield, charged the last suit, and engaged in combat, clashing swords and blocking strikes with his massive shield. The toa of lightning and the toa of plasma both took care of the remaining rahkshi, fusing their powers to melt their attackers. The toa of fire managed to stab the suit of armor through its head, and destroyed it. The toa of gravity ordered “escort the matoran to safety, I will make sure no more reinforcements come through”
“You won’t even be able to stop a stone rat from coming through Ladrex” answered the toa of fire in a harsh tone.
“For once in your life shut up and listen to orders Suren” yelled the female toa of psionics.
“Very well, let’s go then” the toa of fire known as Suren answered.
They left in a hurry, carrying only about half the matoran to safety. The other halves were killed in the onslaught. The toa of gravity known as Ladrex looked at the pile of rocks that the exo toa was under. It started to move. Just as he expected, it was still alive, and broke through the debris, sending chunks of rock at Ladrex. He did even flinch, just with a flick of his wrist sent the rocks flying in the air towards the exo toa, implanting them in its armor. Enraged, the exo toa charged the toa with its hooks, and swung at his chest. Ladrex dodged the attack, readied his sword, and stabbed it through the chest of the exo toa. It seemed to have no effect, so he retreated a few meters away from the suit. He closed his eyes, and for a few moments it seemed like he was going to take a nap. Then suddenly, the suit began to topple over its own weight, and could not move at all. Then a snap sound came from the suit, and it fell to the ground, destroyed.
“It’s amazing what a little bit of gravity can do to a body” laughed Ladrex as he walked calmly towards the exit.
Detru ran along with some of his other matoran friends near to the toa, in an area inside of le-metru. According to Suren, this area should have no patrols coming through, so they should be safe.
“Where is Ladrex?” questioned the toa of psionics. “Shouldn’t he be here by now?”
“Im sure Ladrex is fine Tena” answered the toa of lightning. “Although he is not a very good fighter, he is smart enough to survive just like all of us”
“What is that in the sky over there?” asked Detru, looking at what looked like a being floating in the air.
“See there’s Ladrex” exclaimed the toa of lightning “he always has an entrance” he muttered under his breath. Ladrex slowly lowered to the ground, and greeted the rest of his fellow toa.
“Everyone here alright?” he asked the matoran seemed so frazzled that they did not even answer, just delivered a slight nod. “What happened to you Simbra?” asked Ladrex, pointing at the toa of lightning’s left arm. The toa had a large scrape on his arm, and was holding it trying to hide his wound.
“It’s nothing” replied Simbra “we have more important matters to attend to”.
“You are right brother” he said “we need to get these matoran out of here and to the relay point set up by the order.”
Detru looked confused. Was this the order of mata-nui they were talking about? He knew very little about their existence only that they aided to defend the island of Metru-nui against the brotherhood of Makuta during the destiny war a few months back.
“What kind of dumb rahi are you to think that we will be able to get there before nightfall!” yelled Suren the toa of fire. “When night comes, rahkshi will be swarming this area of the island!”
“I have calculated that if we run, we should be able to make it to the southern point of Le-Metru in just less than 4 hours” added the toa of plasma
“Shut up Warth” Suren yelled “we have wounded matoran with us and they won’t be able to run!” he added.
“We will make it” Ladrex commanded. “If we encounter rahkshi, we will simply do what we do best: destroy them, and protect the matoran. Is that okay with you hothead?”
“Yeah and why should we listen to you?” Suren asked “no one here chose to make you our leader!”
Tren decided to finish this argument “Trinuma was the one who picked our leader, and he is wiser than all of us here. He decided that Ladrex would be the leader, and that is final. Whether or not he is suited we will find out later, now both of you shut up and focus on the task at hand”. It was silent for the rest of the trip, and although they encountered a patrol squad of rahkshi, they were destroyed without being able to report to their headquarters.
When they arrived at the outpost, the toa saw a familiar face, Krakua a toa of sonics, full time member of the order of mata-nui, and their superior. “Welcome back toa, I see that you have brought matoran with you” he said.
“We were only able to save about half of them” answered Ladrex “do we have enough shelter for them all?”
“Yes of course follow me” he replied. He sent the toa and matoran to one of the shelters close to the beach. He followed Tren and asked “how bad was it in the heart of the city?”
“Pretty bad” she replied “ the Makuta own the city with an iron hand, it will be hard for a military conquest of the city. I am most concerned with Ladrex and Suren as they have not been able to work well together since we were founded.”
Krakua looked at the stars, knowing that the toa would have to work together to defeat the Makuta. “That is not good, for in these dark times, we toa have to stick together”
Deep in the heart of the city, atop the coliseum, Dariss, commander of the Makuta in metru nui, appointed by Teridax himself, was frustrated. A team of toa managed to save a bunch of rebellious matoran and he would be taking the blame for it. If I tell Teridax about this, he will have my hide. I will have to deal with these toa myself, and keep information to a low. Teridax thinks that he is so special that he won’t even look at this universe and focus on the stars. But while his head is in the sky, I will personally slice it off and become leader of the Makuta myself.
To be continued in dark times, chapter 2.
Dark times, chapter 1.