Mechanical Magicby Casey Gilman
The Final Chapters: Mechanical Magic
CounterattacksKrugg followed the sound of Makrahcken's voice, and soon found himself directly in front of his dark-robed ally.
"What is it?!" Krugg asked.
"It's this, you brainless behemoth," uttered Makrahcken, handing the scroll to Krugg. Krugg swiped it, and began to read it.
"I thought we should go look into it," started Makrahcken," after we went to the prison. I want to see if they really did escape."
"You jerk!!!" Krugg shouted,"I was just there, and so were all of the prisoners! It must be some kinda trick!"
They both rushed back towards the prison. It took them less than a minute, but all the prisoners were gone. Ovid was locked inside the prison.
"You looked right over me, you moron!" Ovid told Krugg.
"Jailbreak!" squawked Kouse, as Makrahcken and Krugg hurried after the escaped prisoners.
"Hey!" shouted Ovid, after they had left,"What about me?!"
* * *
All seventeen of them hurried out of the small weapons room. They had reclaimed the weapons that had been taken from them, upon their arrival.
"This way!" Shadow led them toward the exit, which was the hole that Umaro had created. About twelve cult guards awaited them. Shadow hurled a smoke bomb at them, blinding all twelve. The newly freed prisoners plowed through, and found themselves outside for the first time in months. The sky was clear, and the stars shone brightly. Since they had come out a different way, they didn't even need to pass through Zozo.
"The Falcon is up ahead!" exclaimed Setzer, as they all made their way to where the Falcon had originally crashed. Now it was as good as new, and it even had a new door toward the bottom of it's hull.
"We won't need a rope ladder to get in, anymore!" exclaimed Setzer.
"It's almost the same as your old ship now," remarked Edgar, as they all entered. They made their way to the deck, and pushed a few cult guards off the sides. Terra could see cult guards, and regular guards, pouring out of the various entrances of Mount Zozo.
"Hurry," she cried.
"Let's test her out!" exclaimed Setzer, who was using the controls.
They all could hear the propulsion engines, in the back of the blimp, turn on. The airship lifted off the ground, just as the majority of the Cult of Kefka approached it.
"See ya later, scumbags!" shouted Locke.
Roy gave them the "raspberry".
* * *
The Falcon was enroute to Figaro Castle, and it would take them about fifteen minutes to get there. Everyone was on the deck, and enjoying the fresh air.
"Feels good to fly her again!" exclaimed Setzer,"Everyone made it aboard, right?"
Edgar, who was right behind him, made a quick count. Fourteen Returners, including himself, Roy, Jebediah, and Interceptor.
"We're all here!" Edgar told Setzer.
They all remained pretty quiet, because they were very worn out from the whole ordeal. Then, Cyan approached Shadow, who was looking over the side.
"How did you know we where in there?" asked the king of Doma.
"One of the sentries on your ship was still alive," Shadow explained,"He said that Krugg mentioned Zozo. I had a feeling that something big was going on there, so I tried to get help from the rest of you. The only ones I could find were Gau, Mog, Gogo, and Umaro. I sent them in first, so the cult would still think I was dead. They let their guard down a little, when they thought they had all of you."
"That's why we couldn't tell you how we knew where you were," said Mog.
"We are forever in your debt," replied Cyan,"And I realize now, that you are not guilty of freeing Doma's prisoners."
"About time you smartened up," uttered Shadow.
"And," he started again,"I will clear you of all charges that involve crimes against Doma. All I ask is that you tell me where the gold is."
"There will be time for that, later," replied Shadow,"This isn't over, yet."
Strago was looking at the pair from across the deck. He couldn't believe who Shadow actually was. The old man watched him, giving him a cold stare.
* * *
Roy woke up, and sat up in bed, refreshed. A ray of sunshine shone through a window.
'Was it all a dream?' he wondered.
Then he saw that he was in Figaro Castle. It had all happened, and he had survived through it. It wasn't over, though.
He looked around at all the other beds in the new guest room. Everyone that he had escaped with was here, except for Edgar and Sabin. They had their own bedrooms to sleep in.
The other fifteen guests began to wake up.
* * *
After everyone was awake, they were all fed in the dining hall. Matron, the Chancellor, and Dolby were seated there as well.
"Now," started the Chancellor,"Would his majesty mind explaining where you all have been for the past month and a half? Did you catch up to Ovid?"
"Yes," answered Edgar,"He's been working for a man named Definnius."
"He's the leader of the Cult of Kefka," added Sabin,"They've got their own underground civilization inside Mount Zozo, and the surrounding mountains!"
"They needed me, Strago, Setzer, and Jebediah, here," Edgar began again,"to help him build a powerful device. They have also been experimenting on Terra, and they had the other Returners captured. Shadow had to come free us."
"He wants to re-create magic, and this device may actually succeed in doing so," said Strago.
"Now that you mention it," Locke said,"What kind of device is it?"
"Well..." Edgar began to describe the device.
* * *
"I can't believe how incompetent you three are!" shouted Definnius at his top three minions. He was standing in front of his throne.
"S-sorry, master," uttered Ovid,"The n-ninja was too q-quick for me."
"Right," replied Definnius,"But the ninja assassin, Shadow, was dead, wasn't he, Krugg?!"
"I swear I bumped him off, back in Doma!" Krugg responded.
"You were wrong!" shouted Kefka's double,"But you could have righted that wrong. Ovid said you were right in front of him, but you left to look at some note!"
"The scroll that was left in my quarters needed to be looked into," started Makrahcken, with Kouse on his left shoulder,"Had I known what was happening in the prison, I wouldn't have called Krugg."
"That note was obviously some kind of trick!"" cried Definnius,"The prisoners were far too weak to take on Krugg!"
"True," replied Makrahcken,"But if for some strange reason it hadn't been a trick, it would have meant that the prisoners had escaped. I, as much as anyone, didn't want that to happen."
"But it did happen," said Definnius,"Fortunately, I could make the finishing touches myself."
"So it is completed?" asked Makrahcken.
"Yes," answered his leader," Come, with me, to the main construction room!"
* * *
Once they were all in the main construction room...
"Behold!" exclaimed Definnius,"The Mechanical Magic Generator!!!"
Before them, a metal column extended about ten feet into the air. It was about five feet in diameter, and there were small square openings in it. Through the openings, gears could be seen. They were not yet moving.
Surrounding the gear-filled column, was some kind of control panel. It extended around the front half of the column only, and had a lot of levers and switches sticking out of it.
Finally, on top of the column, there was a shiny metal sphere. It was about twice as wide as the column, and it reflected images, like a mirror.
As the three underlings stared at it, not believing that he had actually managed to build the device, Definnius was putting some kind of bands on his wrists. He then placed similar bands on his ankles, and one around his head.
"It is even greater than I had imagined it!" admitted Makrahcken.
"Wow!" squawked Kouse.
"G-great job, master!" Ovid managed to say.
"You can really generate magic with that thing?" asked Krugg.
"Correct," answered Definnius,"Magic, in a new form!"
He began to hit switches and pull levers. The gears and other metal components that were inside the column, began to move.
"There's a small factory in there!" cried Makrahcken.
"It is activated, and ready!" Definnius could hardly restrain his excitement.
He pointed his right index finger at a rock wall. The band around his head glowed yellow for an instant, then the one around his right wrist glowed, as a bolt of lightning flew from his fingertip. A small hole was blasted into the side of the wall. Krugg, Ovid, and Makrahcken could hardly believe what they were seeing.
"It works!!!" shouted Definnius, rushing out of the room. His three minions followed him.
* * *
They exited the caverns through an opening at the top of the highest peak. They sky was a cloudless, shade of pastel blue. The sun warmed the land like a spring day.
"Now," began Definnius, raising his hands above his head,"I shall let the entire world know what I have in store for it!"
The bands around his wrists, and the one around his head, all glowed a bright yellow. Makrahcken even squinted a little before the bright light. Then, out of nowhere, dark gray clouds began to form. In mere seconds, the entire sky was a dark gray.
"Let the new era begin!!!" cried a delighted Definnius.
* * *
Back at Figaro Castle, Edgar and Strago finished a detailed description of the Mechanical Magic Generator.
"It actually sends power through an orb, and into a few bands?" asked Terra, dumbfounded,"I had no idea that that was what you two had been working on!"
"But you said that the device was not quite complete," reminded Cyan.
"All it needed was a few finishing touches," replied Strago.
"I'm afraid that Definnius may be able to finish it himself," said Edgar.
"I'd say that was a safe bet," no one had noticed that Locke had gotten up, and been looking out a window.
All of them stood up, and went for a window. There were about ten in the dining hall, all of which revealed a dark, smoke-like sky.
"Good lord!" exclaimed Jebediah.
"The clouds came from the west," explained Locke.
"From Mount Zozo, I'll wager," said Setzer.
"But, why?" asked Celes.
"Probably to demonstrate how much power he has," answered Edgar.
"This is truly a desperate time," uttered Cyan.
"What will you do now?" asked the Chancellor.
"I think it's time to pay back Definnius for the wonderful guest room he gave us!" declared Locke.
"Right!" Sabin agreed.
"Shouldn't we have some kind of plan?" suggested Celes.
"I've got one!" began Edgar,"It's going to be difficult, but here goes:"
"We'll split into three groups; Mog, Gogo, Umaro, Strago, and Relm will divert the attention of the soldiers and guards."
"Strago and Relm are going to fight without using magic?" asked Sabin.
"Hey!" shouted Relm,"We're not defenseless! Are we Gramps?!"
"No way!" cried Strago,"I'm just as strong as I was when I used to hunt Hidon!"
"Getting back to the plan," Edgar began again,"Setzer will also help create a diversion with the Falcon. Locke, Celes, Terra, and myself will be aboard with him. If we get close enough, and aren't attacked, we can sneak in from the top of the mountain."
"Great!" exclaimed Setzer,"A chance to fly here through dangerous terrain!"
"What about me, brother?" asked Sabin.
"You, along with Shadow, Cyan, and Gau, will sneak into the caverns, and turn off the machine. Destroy it, if you can! Hopefully, the majority of the cult will be after the rest of us, so you shouldn't have much trouble."
"Do I get to ride on the airship with you, Mama?" asked Roy.
"It's too dangerous for you and Jebediah," answered Terra.
"Yes," agreed Edgar,"You two stay in the castle. It should be safe here. Chancellor, you are in charge, until I get back. Feel free to lower the castle, if you need to."
"Right," said the Chancellor,"Good luck to you all!"
* * *
The band of Returners exited the castle, and boarded the Falcon, which had been made capable of desert landings. A few of them had equipped themselves with weapons from Figaro Castle. The great ship was soon airborne, and heading for Mount Zozo.
"As soon as we are over the shoreline, northeast of Zozo, land the Falcon," Edgar told Setzer.
"Why?" asked Setzer.
"I want Sabin's team to start there, so we'll have time to divert everyone's attention. I want them to have as little trouble as possible," answered Edgar.
* * *
Before long, the Falcon had arrived at the coast, and made a quick landing.
"Start heading for Mount Zozo, but give us enough time to get their full attention," Edgar told Sabin, who was standing with the rest of his team, in front of the exit.
"Right," replied Sabin.
"Gau will do good job!" said Gau,"Better than when try to rescue friends!"
"Good luck," Edgar said, as the other four exited the Falcon.
"Does anyone know where the generator is?" asked Cyan, as the Falcon took off again.
"Edgar gave me a rough description of how to get to it from the prison," answered Sabin.
"Let's go," said Shadow.
* * *
"We'll do our best! Kupo!" Mog said to Edgar, as he exited the Falcon with Strago, Umaro, Relm, and Gogo. They were at the gap in the mountains, in front of Zozo. It was almost the same place that the Falcon had crashed.
The team headed across the field toward Zozo. There was still a crater in the ground, and boulders strewn among the field. The Falcon took off, and headed nearer to Mount Zozo.
"Look!" Locke pointed to the peak,"There's Definnius, and his three stooges!"
"Let's go get those creeps!" shouted Celes, as Setzer began to close in on them.
* * *
"Great sky," Krugg told his master,"Now what are ya gonna do?'
"I'm going to work my way around the planet, reducing every town to ashes!" Definnius answered,"But I must be sure to leave some people alive. I will need people to worship me!"
"H-how are you going to travel, master?" asked Ovid,"The airship is gone now."
"I no longer need an airship!" declared Definnius,"I am, however, going to destroy the Returners!"
"Here comes both the airship, and the Returners!" Makrahcken pointed to the sky. The Falcon would be to their location in half a minute.
"Perfect!" exclaimed Definnius. His headband, and his anklebands both glowed for a moment, as he rose into the air. He then began to fly toward the airship, while remaining in a standing position.
"Look!" cried Setzer,"Definnius can fly!"
"He has almost infinite power now, thanks to me," Edgar said, ashamed of himself.
"It's not your fault," said Celes,"You were forced into it."
"Can this conversation wait?" asked Locke.
"Here he comes!" shouted Terra, who pulled out a dagger.
Streams of fire began to shoot out of Definnius' hands. He whizzed by the left side of the Falcon, leaving black streaks across it's wooden hull.
"It's not burning," uttered Celes with amazement.
"Definnius must not want it to," replied Edgar.
"Why?" asked Terra.
"He probably wants to show off his new powers some more," suggested Locke.
Definnius turned back around, and whizzed by the right side. This time, he blasted it with a barrage of lightning bolts. The Falcon shook, and tilted to the left for a brief moment, but Setzer kept it under control.
"I'm not going to crash her again!" declared Setzer, who was lowering the ship onto a relatively flat spot on the mountains.
"Ha! Ha! Cowards!" cackled Definnius, while staying motionless in the air.
* * *
"Look!" cried a cult guard, who was in front of Umaro's hole, which had not been repaired yet,"The prisoners have come back!"
Indeed, Strago, and the rest of his team, was rushing up to the two guards who guarded the entrance.
"They won't get away this time!" cried the other guard,"I'll get reinforcements!"
The guard rushed inside, and the first one prepared to use his spear. Mog had his spear ready, and was soon close enough to jab the guard with it. The rest of the team had also made it to the entrance.
"How do you use these things, anyway?" asked Relm, who was holding a spear from Figaro Castle,"I wish I could still use my paintbrushes!"
The moogle was fighting furiously with the guard, and looked like he needed help. Relm clubbed the guard over the head with her spear, knocking him out.
"Thanks! Kupo!" Mog said to her,"Why isn't there anyone else here?"
Just then, about two hundred cult members, and a few of the ex-prisoners of Doma, charged out, forcing the five Returners back.
"You had to open your big mouth!" Relm scolded Mog.
* * *
Setzer managed to land the Falcon on the piece of flat, grassy land on Mount Zozo. The five of them exited, through the bottom. Before them, parallel to the left side of the airship, was a ten-foot ledge. Ovid, Makrahcken, and Krugg were looking down on them.
"Looks like I'm gonna crush a few of you, after all!" shouted Krugg, as he jumped down.
He landed, leaving imprints of his feet in the ground.
"Alright," bellowed Krugg,"Who's gonna die first!"
On the ledge above, Makrahcken and Ovid where looking down on the battle field to their right.
"Another big battle!" exclaimed Ovid, with glee,"I'm going to have some fun!"
He entered Mount Zozo through the opening that they had all come out of. Makrahcken just stood there, watching.
All five Returners were standing in front of Krugg.
"Do you think you'll actually beat ME?!" Krugg asked.
In response, Terra pulled out a dagger, Celes drew her sword, Edgar aimed his AutoCrossbow, and Setzer pulled out three blades.
"Ha! Ha!" Krugg found them humorous.
Terra lunged at Krugg, and stabbed him in the left arm. Celes slashed his midsection with her sword. Edgar let a barrage of arrows fly at the same area that Celes slashed him. Setzer threw his blades at the same area. Krugg almost cried out in pain, as he pushed them all down with his left arm. They all stood up, and prepared to attack again.
"Keep hitting him in the same spot!" Edgar had a revelation,"We can weaken him that way!"
"Got it!" replied Setzer.
Locke, who was standing with them, had not taken part in the battle, yet. He stared up and Makrahcken, and Makrahcken stared back.
"You four take care of Krugg," said Locke, as he began climbing up the ten-foot ledge,"I have some unfinished business with birdman."
As Locke reached the top of the ledge, Makrahcken drew his sword. Locke drew his knife.
"This is a nice sword," said Makrahcken, looking at his medium-sized, one-handed sword,"But it's not as nice as the one you gave me!"
"Grrrrr...," Locke grumble as he charged at Makrahcken. Locke tried to stab his adversary, but Makrahcken knocked the weapon out of his hand, with the sword. Locke bent over to pick it up, and Makrahcken kicked him over. Locke turned over on his back, as Makrahcken put his right foot on Locke's chest.
"I hope this time," uttered the dark-robed man,"you die for good."
Makrahcken held his sword in the air, with the blade pointed downward.