Authors Note: Hey Y'all, Bobofoot here. This is a short story designed as a sort of 'teaser' for Bionicle Eternal, a fan-reimagining of Bionicle originating in the LMBs. Hope you enjoy!
Eryk leaned against the fence gate and sighed, wiping some of the dust off his armor. The Ga-matoran looked over his field in contentment; it would be a good harvest this year. His farm wasn’t the greatest in all the land as, built halfway up the side of the valley, space was limited. But it was more than enough to support his family. He had been tending to the volo trees, his son Leif was working on an irrigation trench, and his daughter Gail was removing weeds. The sun was setting over the Spine, and it was time to call it a day.
“Leif! Gail! Let’s head back home!” His son climbed out of the trench he had dug and hurried over, complaining loudly.
“Finally! I’m sick to death of digging.” Gail laughed as she followed.
“Well come on then, lazybones. If we don’t hurry, supper will be cold by the time we get home!
Eryk and his children walked up the weather-worn stone stairs that led up to their house overlooking the rest of the valley. He could see the rivers flowing all the way to the sea from his front porch. Smiling at the thought, Eryk set down his farm tools and knocked on the door.
“Ashildr, I’m home!”
The night sky glowed softly, lit by the farthest moon. The valley glowed with a peaceful light.
Eryk sat on his chair, sending smoke rings out into the night air and slowly slipping into a doze.
It was the shouts that woke him up. Down in the valley, there was shouting and screaming and the clashing of metal.
“What’s going on-” Eryk snapped into full awareness as he realized what was happening.
“Everybody wake up!” He yelled, running into the house. “There’s fighting in the valley!”
The family snapped into action instantly, Ashildr and Gail gathering food and essentials while Eryk and Leif took all the tools they could carry. The family hurried down another path toward the secret cave shelter, hoping that it’d be an unnecessary precaution. They’d almost reached the cave when Eryk stopped short.
He’d forgotten the axe.
“Barzul.” He cursed to himself, judging whether or not he should go get it. On the one hand, it was risky to return when they were so close to the secret shelter. On the other, it might be stolen by some needy soldier, and if the enemy somehow found the cave and he didn’t have his axe…
That thought settled it.
“Hold this,” he passed his load to Leif, “I need to fetch something.”
And he turned and ran back to the house.
“Where is it, where is it... Aha!” Eryk pulled the axe out of his closet. Grinning triumphantly, he ran outside. The battle hadn’t even touched his farm yet, with any luck these safeguards would be needless.
With an almighty crash, a blue cannonball smashed into the side of the house, plowing all the way out through the back wall. When the smoke cleared, Eryk saw that it wasn’t a cannonball after all, rather, it was the Toa of Water.
Maerkon was his name, a legend throughout Galis. The Toa slowly stood back up, shaken but apparently unharmed. Eryk could see that his entire body seemed to be coated in a shimmery blue film. Maerkon hefted his axe and stepped outside, and Eric realized they weren’t the only ones on the farm.
The volo trees shivered and shook against the wind, and weeds began growing impossibly fast, completely clogging up the irrigation trench that had been dug mere hours before. At the edge of the fields stood a being of pure terror.
As it stepped out of the shadows, Eryk felt his mouth go dry and will falter.
Vineon, Toa of the Green. He easily stood head and shoulders over most matoran, and was much stockier than Maerkon, who was pretty toned himself. His armor was pitted and warped in shape, color similar to the pale and deep withered greens of leaves long fallen from the tree. His eyes flared malevolently, and as he extended his arms, Eryk swore he could see the shadows turn into trees.
Maerkon didn’t say a word, just charged immediately, spinning his axe. Vineon ducked around the first strike and lashed out with his claws, but they scraped harmlessly off of Maerkon’s armor.
“Oh yeah, that pesky shield of yours.” Vineon hissed, his voice sending shivers down one’s spine. He disappeared amid the trees with a taunting laugh. Maerkon swung his axe, downing one tree after another trying to find his foe.
Vineon appeared right behind Eryk. The farmer stiffened with fright, but Vineon just smiled and pushed him out of the way. An awful shuddering ran through his body, his arms bent at an odd angle, and his armor split open as plant vines ran out of his armor and into the ground. Maerkon, realizing that Vineon had eluded him, spun around, looking for him.
“Over here, hero!” Vineon laughed. As Maerkon pivoted, a storm of vines surged up from the ground, pinning his arms and holding him in place.
“Now, let’s get to work on that shield, eh?”
He shuddered and shook, more vines growing out of his arm. These twisted and writhed into a giant spike, covered in a layer of smooth bark, that narrowed down into a dangerous point. Vineon reared back and brought the spike down hard. It splintered and shattered without even reaching his armor. Eryk cautiously shuffled forward, trying to get a closer look. How was he doing that? Then he realized. That blue barrier was a thin layer of water. The Toa must be able to turn it into a sort of armor.
Vineon hissed, more vines already growing.
“You need to just give up already. This is getting annoying, and I stop being nice when I’m annoyed.”
These vines were different than before, the tips blooming into violently purple and yellow flowers. Flowers that Eryk knew could release a poisonous pollen. Could water stop a pollen?
Eryk took a deep breath and grabbed his axe. This was probably going to get him killed, but he didn’t have a choice.
“HALAAAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRR!” Uttering a fierce warcry, the farmer leapt at Vineon and swung his axe. The Toa of the Green yelped and dodged aside.
“You little-! I should have killed you from the start! Oh well, that can be fixed.” He cackled and grabbed Eryk by the neck. “Would you like some flowers?” Eryk struggled furiously, trying to no avail to loosen his grip. But as Vineon’s mind wandered, the vine prison holding Maerkon loosened.
Vineon stiffened as he felt a heavy hand on his shoulder.
“I’d appreciate it if you put my friend down.” The tone was casual, almost uncaring, but Maerkon’s face brooked no argument. Eryk fell to the ground and scrambled backwards as fast as he could. Maerkon swung his axe in a downward arc. Vineon rolled out of the way, howling in pain as a stray vine was ripped out of his armor.
Maerkon’s water field shifted to his axe, coating it in a layer of shimmering blue. He then sent it spinning through the air at his opponent. It missed by an embarrassingly wide margin. Vineon looked over his shoulder incredulously as the glowing axe spun wildly into the night.
“Uhh... are you sure you're Maerkon, legendary soldier or whatever? ‘Cause man that was dumb.” His mirth was short lived however, as Maerkon punched him in the stomach so hard he went flying backwards. Maerkon caught him and threw him into the ground. Vineon gagged, clutching his stomach. Vines were already growing out from his armor.
“Ugh. That... that really hurt. You may not talk much, but your fists sure are eloquent.” Then the vines exploded out from his chest, rapidly growing and expanding to cover his body and entrap his assailant. “Shame, not even you can punch through my vines. If only you hadn’t thrown away your axe.” Maerkon stared at his opponent for a minute. Then:
“I control water, stupid.” The glowing blue axe came spinning back from the night, slicing cleanly through every vine, rendering Vineon defenseless.
The green Toa screamed again, an earsplitting noise that forced both Eryk and Maerkon to their knees. When they got up, Vineon was just a distant shadow limping into the night.
Eryk looked around at the devastation. Not a single part of the farm had been untouched. All the trees were sliced cleanly through, the house had been annihilated, the trench Leif had labored so hard to make had all but been filled in. Maerkon looked around and bowed his head.
“Thank you for the help. I’m sorry for your home.”
Eryk heaved a defeated sigh.
“Just go fight your war, Toa. Make sure he doesn’t come back. I’ll take care here. This isn’t the first time a battle's been fought. We’ll pull through. We always do."