Just Outside Forte Valkyrie...
"I'm telling you, Kiryu told me that if I came by I would be taken care of."
"Tell it to the judge!"
"Wha-what?" Tien argues as he scratches his bald head in confusion.
"I don't know," Commander Thrigon shrugs while leaning back up against the wall. "I just always wanted to say that. Anyway, I can't just let you in because Kiryu supposedly said it was cool. We recently had some problems with a traitor, so we have to be extra cautious with who we let in."
"Listen," Tien says in a rather bold tone. "I was astonished with his performance at the tournament. He went toe to toe against an opponent that completely outclasses me in every fighting aspect. Because of that, I decided to come down here and join. I recently hit a wall and haven't been able to get any stronger, but I think that in the right environment, such as this place, I'll be able to further improve myself."
"Cool story bro. So, uh, did Kiryu win the match?"
"Does it matter?"
"Yeah, it does. I wanna' make fun of him when he gets back, but I won't be able to do that if he won!"
"I left early, so I don't know."
"My god... I don't even know what to say to you."
"Can I come in or not? You're a high rank, no? How about we go spar."
Thrigon lets out a big sigh and opens up the front gate, signalling Tien to follow him. The bald warrior does just that. "Two other guys dropped by yesterday. Told me the same story about how Kiryu said to drop by, so I eventually let them in after deducing that they wouldn't be much of a threat if did do anything stupid."
"Is that a compliment to me?"
"You don't want to let me in because you're afraid that I'll be able to tango with the best, which wouldn't be good if I happened to betray you all."
"Yeah, whatever. Don't get too cocky because you still ain't got s*** on any of the Commanders. Well, except maybe Joseph. He isn't quite on our level, but he's a kind of a combat genius, so there's that."
"You do know that those names mean absolutely nothing to me, right?"
"I think I like you, Tien," Thrigon laughs. The two of them enter the Training Center and Thrigon points to two people who are sparring at the far corner. "If you were at the tournament, you should recognize those two. If you can do that, I'll put you on probation as well."
"The one on the left is some guy called the Iron Mantis. Kiryu crushed him with little effort." Thrigon nods. "The other didn't make it to the Top 16, but I recognize him from the previous tournament, where he placed quite high. His name was Lind Thrasher or something."
"Alright, you pass." Thrigon submits, "But I'm not sparring with you right now. Go ask somebody else." Thrigon turns around and makes a swift exit from the Training Center, leaving Tien alone to fend for himself in this new environment.
Meanwhile, With Joseph Pike...
"So boring, so boring, so boring." Joseph spins around in his chair, hardly giving any attention to the monitor on his desk. "I just want to go kill someone. Oh no, oh no, I hate being bored!"
All of a sudden, he stops speaking to himself and darts his eyes towards the monitor. On the screen, Fleet Executive Korn from the Red Ribbon Army is walking through the halls of Red Ribbon Headquarters. Static surges through the screen and the volume is rather poor, but Joseph makes out the man taking a seat in a large-yet empty-room.
"A meeting?" Joseph asks himself. "Huh, maybe they'll talk about something interesting this time. I can't believe Rem assigned me to watch every damn move this guy makes. I barely have time for myself..."
Korn puts his sharp nails down to his lower thighs and starts scratching intensely, which shows clearly on the monitor. He eventually tears off a small chip that was stuck on his leg and lifts it up to his eyes, examining it carefully. Not too long ago, a few Commanders travelled to Red Ribbon Headquarters and managed to place a chip on Fleet Executive Korn's leg. Since then, every move and word he made has been watched carefully by Joseph Pike and Rem (until he died).
Joseph gawks directly back at him. The two men stare directly into each other's eyes, only Korn is unable to see Joseph through the small chip in his hand.
"About time you found out it was on your leg. Idiot, Rem was able to learn about the Dragon Balls because of your own carelessness."
Korn continues to gaze at the chip eerily, realizing that he is being watched at this time. He frowns heavily before crushing the piece of technology and cutting all contact between the Red Ribbon Army and the Freeborn Military.
"Guess I got all the free time I wanted now...only, I'm still bored."
Back With Kiryu...
"Okay," you begin, gazing directly into Phoenix's eyes with a harsh yet calm glare. His lips are slightly parted and his eyes are barely managing to stay open. "I'll hear you out, so tell me everything."
"The Saiyans have gotten far too powerful." You widen your eyes and raise an eyebrow. "As it stands now, their small group has enough power to annihilate anybody they so desire. None of my colleagues want to accept this, but it is all too clear to me. In order to stop them, it is crucial that we act now, before it is too late."
"That's ridiculous. I invaded their camp not too long ago, and am fully aware of their strength. Prince Vegeta, Bardock, Broly, Kakarot, and Maize are the only remaining Saiyans that pose a threat to either of us," you boldly declare as you count their numbers with one hand. "Even with their power, it isn't near enough to take down the FBM or the Red Ribbon Army."
"Indeed, that is exactly what I had thought. We were all fools, allowing them to live for so long; allowing them to grow in strength. But, now, everything has changed."
"Spit it out."
"Dr. Gero, the most brilliant scientist in the world, was loyal to the Red Ribbon Army for decades. You used to work for us, so I'm sure you know at least that much." You nod your head in agreement, knowing perfectly well who Gero is. "However, we recently discovered that he has been working undercover with the Saiyans. I wish we had found out sooner..."
"For how long?"
"Nearly two years now, it seems. He was working with the late King Vegeta for a lengthy period of time, and once he was killed, Gero continued working under Prince Vegeta and the other Saiyans. Finally, his work with them is complete."
"What work would that be?"
"Have you heard the legend of the Saiyans?" You lean back a little bit in confusion, which Phoenix notices. "I suppose not. In a nutshell, it is said that once every thousand years a unique being is born. One that has an extraordinary amount of strength; enough power to wipe out the entire planet in an instant. The pinnacle of the Saiyan race, known as a Super Saiyajin."
"Hmm..." You ponder, now seeing where Phoenix is going with this.
"It isn't quite the same, but Dr. Gero has created a drug which interacts with a Saiyan's DNA in a peculiar way. Yes, it releases every bit of their latent power, which has strengthened them beyond belief. We're calling it the Artificial Super Saiyajin."
I remember now. King Vegeta said something about becoming a Super Saiyajin right before he passed away. You clear your throat and let out a sigh. "What does Gero gain from doing this?"
"I wish I could tell you, but I was not able to gather such information."
"It all seems rather nonsensical. Why not just kill Gero now that they've gotten what they wanted? He's playing with fire and could be killed at any moment."
"Sure, they could kill him, but why would they? He's done his job. I imagine they consider him part of the team at this point."
"Hmph, I wonder about that."
"I've said everything I wanted to say. Kiryu, will you join up with me until we deal with the Saiyans?"
"Why are you coming to me? Why not the other Commanders? Why not Rem? Even if you had my support, that doesn't mean you would get the support from the FBM."
"I believe it does."
"Why is that?"
"Because Rem is dead."
A short pause ensues. You gulp, trying to keep your composure. Phoenix gawks at you without changing his facial expression, seemingly uninterested in all of this.
"What would make you think that?"
"Oh. Just a hunch. For starters, he hasn't been seen since that battle involving the former Commander Pitou. Then, you went to a trivial event such as the World Martial Arts Tournament and made a speech about how a new era is coming. Heh, and your facial expression when I proposed the possibility changed dramatically. Did you forget that I can read people?" You grunt. "Don't worry, I haven't told a soul. Your secret is safe with me...for now."
"So, are you the new leader? Or is it Commander Dysect?"
"Yes, I am the man in charge, but I can't control the FBM. Nobody would get on board with the idea of teaming up with you."
"Naturally. I can't control the Red Ribbon Army either, well, through regular means that is. But again, this is an alliance between the two of us."
"You said the Saiyans are strong enough to even wipe out the Red Ribbon Army? Or at least put a huge dent in your forces, correct?"
"So what can just the two of us do against such a thing?"
"We wait for them to make their move. Once the battle has begun, we line up as many competent fighters as possible and meet up at a certain location. If they attack Red Ribbon Headquarters, I'll contact you and then you will get your men ready to head out. If they attack Forte Valkyrie, I'll do the same. All without telling those we are bringing along that we are actually going after the Saiyans, of course. They are powerful, but we can outplay them by using a pincer strategy; locking them in and then sending our most powerful fighters to take them out."
"If they attack the FBM, how do I know you'll support us?" Phoenix cracks a smile at this.
"This is all very sudden, Phoenix. Forgive me if I have trouble trusting your word." You carefully rub the hair on your chin back and forth, hoping that he says something. He doesn't. "What exactly is your goal? I doubt you care about the other Fleet Executives, or anybody else for that matter. So what if most of them die in the process of defeating the Saiyans? All the more power to you, no?"
"If only it were that simple," Phoenix responds in an arrogant fashion. "This is a game of Risk. If we put too much effort into defeating one of the three powers, then we'll be struck in the back by the other. Fighting a two front war is the quickest way to die. You should know this. Ideally, the Saiyans would attack Forte Valkyrie and then we could send all our forces to wipe you both out when the battle is nearing its end. However, that is no guarantee, which is why I scrapped that plan and came up with this. We are both benefiting equally from this deal."
"Why wait for them to attack? We can ambush them and deal with the problem efficiently. Normally I would be opposed to a direct assault as defending is the superior option, however, the Saiyans lack a proper headquarters. They don't have the technology or the man power to benefit from being on the defensive."
"Good point. But the question that still remains is: where are the Saiyans? Once Dr. Gero's betrayal had been found out, they abandoned their old camp and disappeared without a trace. It isn't impossible to find them, but it will be difficult."
"In that case, it's best for both the Red Ribbon Army and the FBM to bulk up our defense."
"Exactly. So once again, Kiryu, what do you say? Remember that everything will stay the same. If the FBM desires, you can launch a full on assault at Red Ribbon Headquarters. This is NOT a treaty. Make no mistake, we are enemies. However, once the Saiyans make their move, we will join our forces to defeat them. If either of us track them down and decide to raid their camp, we shall send word to the other and join up then."
"Is it a deal?"
If what he's saying is true, I would be putting all of my men in danger by not accepting this deal. But if it's a lie, we might end up stupidly walking into a trap. On the other hand, I could always just decide not to help him out at the last minute if the Saiyans end up attacking their headquarters. But that strategy might cause a great deal of other problems.
Phoenix stares at you blankly as you ponder all the possibilities you can think of, finally coming to a decision.
A) Okay, lets join up for the sole purpose of taking down the Saiyans.
B) I'll pass. Thanks for the information, but I don't trust you.
Author's Chapter Notes:
Choice that won:
B1 need to know what his goals for this are and why he needs us.
B1 need to know what his goals for this are and why he needs us.