Chapter 20: New Hope
Round 1 has ended, and I am impressed. I am...not sure. My mind races, soars, and then crashes. I ache all over, and I'm not sure why. I'm trying to think back to what had happened before I went out. Why did it happen? I'm not sure. Wait! I think I recall some. I and my friends of Earth entered Outworld to face Shao Khan. We all disappear in a flash, and reappear in a dark void. We meet other warriors from Earth, and beyond. I face...
"Nigthwolf! I think you have rested enough. Open your eyes, now," a voice called softly, seemingly from beyond. Was he dead?
His eyes blew open, and nearly popped out of his head when he saw the woman who now stood before him.
"Jade! What are you doing? What happened. And..."
"Woah! Easy Nightwolf. One thing at a time, please. The answer to your first question is that I'm here for you. After your DKO, somebody had to be there to make sure you would be ok. Most of the rest of the Earth Warriors were involved in tending to their own wounds, coping with - loses - suffered in this round, and the like. I knew that Khan, Shinnok, or Tsung would love to have the chance at eliminating you, so I made sure that they wouldn't be given the chance. After some more time, you'll be ok."
"Why did you do this? What do you get from this?"
"Oh, come now? Are you REALLY that out of it? Do I really need to explain it to you? Kitana isn't the only one who likes Earthlings! Kitana and I are good friends; we are almost like sisters. You are also special, Nightwolf. You have also used the powers granted to you to preserve the small part of land that is you life. I really love that. That is also another as to why I had 'betrayed' Khan when you all attempted to storm his fortress."
"You were willing to risk your existence, and more, for a gamble that had little chance of success. You do favor the underlings."
"That is also true. Also, despite what you (or others) may think of Earth, it is one of the few places left (in our part of creation) where the people are free. The entire planet may not be, and it may be at odds with itself, and many of them may seem petty, but it still is lovely. Look at my once noble home world. An eternity ago, it was not unlike your own. Now, most of it is like the Wasteland. Those that aren't wastelands are like the Living Forest. Trees with faces on them. As the trio of Ermac, Rain, and Reptile learned, those can, and will, try to eat anything they can grab onto. How nobody in the second Mortal Kombat Tournament didn't get eaten is a miracle. Nearly everywhere you look is a path of death, destruction, and chaos. Many of your leaders may be ass-wipes, but most of them won't proceed with mass genocide just because of some one is questioning their authority. Khan and Shinnok do it regularly."
"I still ache from my match; could you answer me one question before I rest? Are you the `first,' or the `second' Jade?"
"It's a good thing that I've been with Earthlings awhile, otherwise I'd have no idea as to what you would be saying. I'm the`second,' as you put it. Now sleep some more. I need to talk with Kitana. If possible, I want to talk with Jade, too," and before he could get anything more, she was gone.
I don't believe this! For years, I had thought I was the last one of my race. With nothing for me to do, I served Shao Khan faithfully and without fail. I was always wondering about what had happened to my race. What were they like? How would it be that an entire race would simply vanish; and I would be the ONLY one to survive? For years I wondered this. It was not until recently that I learned the truth, from Chameleon, Chameleon-Khameleon, and Khameleon.
I was basically doing what I am now: wondering about what happened to my race, when I was interrupted by the other Reptile. He was then joined by the three women of our clan. I forgot which one, but one of the ladies discovered an old shrine of sorts. As I learned, the Bastard, Shao Khan, is responsible for my race's extinction. Now, we are united, but our numbers have been dwindled from five to three. One was lost to that psycho, Vega. The other Reptile died in The Pit. I want vengeance, but both of the women think that since I had a DKO with Gill, one barely lived as Sagat seemed to spare her, and one defeated Alex.
If Chameleon-Khameleon can win this tournament, maybe we can have all members of our race revived. That is the only reason they wish to stay. If she does loose, they want to get out of here quickly, and do our best to revive our race. While the desire to kill those that have all but destroyed our race burns deep in my soul, they are right. We can't let any more of us die, as long as we can help it, which we can. We will restore our race to it's former glory, no matter how long it takes, I swear it.
This is so, well, pathetic. Out of five of us, I'm the only one to win! It's unbelievable! We were once a proud and noble race. Over the generations, we became peaceful, and nearly all forms violence had been lost over time. That is one of the many reasons why Khan was able to virtually destroy my family, my people. NO ONE SHOULD HAVE THE RIGHT TO DESTROY A FAMILY!
The ONLY one's that can end it are the members itself. Some one from the outside knows nothing of how their victims live. They can do all the bloody "research" and shit they want, but they still know nothing! For some, a family is all they have. Destroying that, either by genocide as Khan had done, or "separating them for their own good," is murder (figuratively, if not literally)!
We all will have our moments of "going crazy;" it IS a crazy universe, each of us live in. I think the safest way is to simply explode now and again. Keeping it all locked up, for fear of "being a hazard to others" is nothing but bullshit! That is why so many break and mass killings happen. With nobody there for us, our hopes for the future die. One must wonder: which is crueler? Is it genocide, the mass killing of souls for their differences. Perhaps it is the "killing of families," for without our blood to support us, we will die!
"Reptile! Chameleon-Khameleon! You won't believe this! I think I've seen another member of our race...a man!"
My name is Raiden, and I am the thunder god for the world known as Earth. My duties are to govern it's thunder and lightning, as well as to serve as its protector. While the first job is self-explanatory, the second one is much more complex. What exactly do I do as this world's protector? Who, or what, am I to protect it from? What, if any, are the limits to these, and other duties?
As this world's protector, I must do whatever I can to keep it safe from any harm, but without directly interfering in the lives of the mortals. This is never easy, even for a god. We have those that we favor in certain walks of life, but we cannot grant special abilities to them, nor can we give them any special attention. All we can do is to advise them, and to make sure their soul is safe and will be able to go on in peace, without interference from outside attacks.
There are several beings I must protect Earth from. The most infamous are Shang Tsung, Shao Khan, and Shinnok. Each of them would doom this world to eternal darkness, stealing the souls of most of the people of Earth, enslaving them, and worse. My duty is to make sure this doesn't happen. When Khan broke through, and when Shinnok returned, it was my duty to do whatever I could to restore the order of things. It is never an easy task, and this time, it was no different. I was only glad to have such fine warriors assisting me in my campaign against such odds. If not for them, I would truly be taxed, and may not have had the power to defend Earth.
What are the limits to these duties? As stated before, I cannot directly interfere in the lives of mortals. Also, I am the defender of Earth. Thus, should I go anywhere else outside of Earth Realm, my powers are greatly reduced. I receive my powers from Earth itself. When I leave it, I lose a large source of my power.
As when we first entered Outworld on this mission, both Fujin and myself realized that we were taking a huge risk. In doing what we were going to do, we risked our immortality. Indeed, we risked our very godhood. Such is our love of this world that we will risk whatever we deem necessary to preserve it. That is what we did upon entering here, and what we will continue to do against those that would attempt to destroy Earth in this tournament.
"Raiden, we must talk," spoke the young god, Fujin.
"I also need to talk with you guys," entered Johnny Cage.
"Yes, my friends. What is it? The tournament has definitely been an awakening. But enough idle talk, what do you wish to say, Fjujin?"
"I do not like the odds in this tournament for the forces of light. Shang Tsung, Goro, Kintaro, Motaro, Shao Khan, and Shinnok have all advanced into the second round. While I don't wish to sell Liu Kang short, nor either of the Subzeros, or Smoke...the only ones I see with any major power to oppose them are Scorpion, and yourself. Scorpion maintains the powers of the dead, which is to his advantage. Both Subzeros have proven their control over the cold, whilst Smoke has shown his uncanny similarity to Scorpion, but without the power of the nether world. Liu Kang successfully defeat Tsung, but was just barely able to handle Khan. All I know is that I don't like it."
"I know we are under similar rules to Mortal Kombat, Raiden, but even I admit that it is nearly impossible to defeat the likes of Goro. He, Kintaro, and Motaro don't have any `god-like' powers, but just look at the sheer size and power of those monsters! Any fireball that is hurled at Motaro (except for ones to the head) bounce right back at the you, knocking the shit out of the sucker who tried to use it! That is unfair! We shouldn't have to fight against them! It's just bull-shit!"
"I understand your concerns, Fujin, Cage. As you know, this Alpha-Omega has limited ALL gods to only the powers used in Mortal Kombat. Even though Fujin and myself are of the forces of light, the Alpha-Omega knows not to play favors. It does what it is supposed to do - make sure that no one is eradicated. Neither of you have mentioned warriors from amongst the Street Fighters. You two should know how much of a challenge they can be. Johnny Cage, you fought Ken Masters in the very first round. You were each taken to the limit, but in the end, he won. Granted, they do have their `dark-sides' to confront, but each of them are noble, deep down in their soul (yes, even Ken!). Their master, Shen Long, also wields a strong force, and will be a strong force to reckon with in this tournament. You must have faith, my young friends. It will work out. None of those who have died - will have died in vain. This I vow!" finished Raiden, a large blast of lightning blasted through the sky.
"It is a good gesture, Raiden. A little emotional, but it would be expected. Still, what makes you think they ever died?"
"After what happened when Balrog lost to Shang Tsung; there is no other answer."
"Is there? I guess you'll just have to stay tuned! Ok, corny! TV IS a powerful tool!" (and with everything that Alpha-Omega can do; for TV to have that kind of effect...;)