“I hope we’re not just wasting our time on this.” grumbled Lance, as he fiddled around with his sled’s controls.
“Don’t say that Lance!” admonished Princess Allura. “Keith is out there, risking his life, in order to buy us this time!”
“A lot of good he’s doing.” Lance sighed, as he tossed a broken connector cable into the trash. “Some of these parts are older than Nanny!”
“Brave man!” chuckled Hunk. “I dare you to say that within her hearing range!”
“He probably would.” Pidge said, staring intently at a jumble of wires. “He never thinks before he speaks, especially around Nanny. Hand me that jumper, princess.”
“This?” She held something up.
He glanced up, and frowned. “No, that one!” Pidge was pointing at a near identical wire to the one she was holding.
“Oh…sorry…” Allura handed the right one to Pidge. “How do you think Keith is faring?”
“Lance!” She made a face. “Since when are you so pessimistic?”
“Since we started having such terrible odds.” Lance sighed. “Look around you princess. The power is still down…that means Keith hasn’t been able to do anything. We have no way of communicating with him, the castle’s weapons have failed, soon our last defense will go out, and we can’t even fly our lions…Now you tell me, where exactly is the bright side in all of this?”
“It…it just hasn’t shown itself yet.” insisted Allura.
“Whatever you say princess.” replied Lance.
“Quick, hand me a circuit board.” ordered Pidge.
“I’ll get it.” Allura stood, glad for a break. She wasn’t really making any progress with her feeble attempts at sled repair. She walked into the room adjacent to Pidge’s workroom. Here was the Green Lion’s pilot’s supply room, filled with so many gadgets and spare parts, Pidge could open his own electronic store, and make a small fortune! Allura didn’t even know what half these things did, though she did know what a circuit board looked like. While digging through parts for one suitably sized for a water sled, she came across a rather large box. “Spring loaded missiles…” She turned the box over, peering at the small print. “Hmm…if I’m reading this right, this works just like a mine…just set, and go…” She picked up her prize, and ran back into the workshop.
“Spring loaded missles!” exclaimed Pidge, when she showed him the box. “I forgot I had these!”
“And why exactly did you have such a thing? Planning to ambush the mice the next time they try to steal your lunch?” teased Lance.
“Oh, Pidge is a bit of a packrat.” explained Hunk. “He’s always saying, you never know when something will come in handy.”
“Well, will this work against the robeast?” asked Allura. “Even a little bit?”
“I think so…you’d have to get in real close though, for it to have any effect on the monster.” Pidge said. “I think I can attach two to the sled, without reducing it’s speed and maneuverability.”
“So do it!” Lance said, excitedly. “I’ll go out and save Keith’s skin, while planting the mines.”
“No Lance, I’LL be the one to go out, and take care of business.” Allura said, shocking the three men.
“Princess no!” protested Hunk. “It’s too dangerous!”
“Danger and I are on a first name basis.” quipped Allura. “And that name is Nanny!”
“I can’t argue with you on that point. Nanny is dangerous!” Lance winced, remembering all the ear pulling, the screaming matches, and spankings he had gotten from the tough woman. “But Nanny is not out to kill anyone–no matter HOW angry she gets at times.”
“I can do it.” insisted Allura. “Besides, I will be of more use out there, than in here. Mechanics is so not my forte.”
“Well…” Pidge glanced at the sled Allura had been working on. It was in worse shape than before she had touched it! “I could use Lance’s more technically able hands to help out on the sleds.”
“So it’s settled then.” Allura flashed them a dazzling smile. “Hook me up Pidge, I’m ready to go!”
“Hold on a sec, princess.” protested Pidge. “I still need to get that circuit board installed…and even then, I don’t know how long this sled will last.”
“I don’t care what the risks are. I HAVE to save my planet…or die trying!” proclaimed Allura.
“Good thing Nanny is not around…” muttered Lance. “Or she’d kill us for this!”
“HA! Kill me, will he?” grumbled Lotor, stuffing a communicator under his sword belt. “I’d like to see him try! I’ll wipe the floor with him! That’ll erase the smirk from his face!”
“Er Lotor…?” Hagger asked timidly.
“WHAT?!” He snarled angry at her for daring to interrupt one of his rants.
“Are you sure this is wise?” She asked. “I mean, wouldn’t it be safer to remain here…let the robeast take care of it, and Arus?”
“Real men don’t hide, when the going gets too tough.” retorted Lotor. “They especially don’t sit still and wait, when an upstart clone starts getting to big for his britches! Daring to have thoughts of his own!”
“What are you going to do?” Hagger asked, a pained look on her face. She always hated seeing her creations destroyed.
“What do you THINK I’m going to do?!” He demanded. “I’m going to KILL him! Annihilate any trace of him ever having walked on this planet!”
“Um…you do realize he’s stronger than you? Twice as fast, near invulnerability, that sort of thing?” Hagger asked.
“I’ve faced such odds before, and survived.” retorted Lotor. “Did more than just survive, I TRIUMPHED, leaving my opponents cold and lifeless!”
“Yes, but you’ve never faced yourself before in battle…” Hagger hesitated. “Don’t…don’t you think you’re being too…cocky?”
“I am NEVER cocky.” insisted Lotor. “Arrogant–perhaps, but that is because I know myself. And I’m counting on my clone to not know myself as well as I know ME!!”
“That…makes sense…in a weird, twisted sort of way…” muttered a confused Hagger.
“Now beam me down, Cossack!” ordered Lotor.
“There it is!” thought Allura excitedly, as she spotted the mechanical robeast. It mis-stepped, one leg splashing thunderously into the river, shaking up the currents. She had to hit her thrusters to prevent from being forced into the wrong direction.
“Okay…just get in close now…” The princess guided the sled towards the beast, doing her best to avoid being crushed as it resumed movement. “Let’ see…” She slowly circled the leg, eyeing out suitable spots. “I’m close enough to attempt mine attachment…” She pushed a button on the sled’s handle, activating the missile shaped explosives. The ends detached, extending towards the monster on an ever expanding metal tubing. “THERE!”
The suction cup like ends fastened onto the skin, hooks emerging to dig deeper into the skin. So immense was the beast, the pain was unnoticeable, as though it were a mere pin prick to the robeast.
“No sign of Keith anywhere…” Allura frowned. She was supposed to set the timer and leave, but…what if Keith was in the area? He could be hurt, lying just out of sight, his oxygen slowly running out…even if he was fine, he could still be killed…what if he happened by just as the bombs went off? She better activate them by remote…this way she’d have time to search for Keith, AND get them to safety. If the robeast reached the castle, she’d blow the mines, regardless of her and Keith’s proximity to it.
Canceling the timer command, she was about to detach the mines, when a flash of bright light caught her eye. White, with a bluish center, she first thought perhaps a strange fish. She thought wrong…it was lazon! More to the point, a lazon sword.
“LOTOR!” Frightened, she gasped, her mouth piece falling from her lips, oxygen bubbles escaping around her.
The Demon Prince who had taken his obsession with her to new stalking extremes, swam past her, sword in hand. She was treated to the rare sight of him totally ignoring her, focusing instead on the mines.
He swam with a grace and ease she found enviable, as though he had been born in water. His sword arm lashed out, severing the chemical containing halves of the mines from the wires. Their contents spilled out, the now empty shells tumbling to the river’s floor, leaving harmless halves suctioned to the robeast’s leg.
Stuffing the mouth piece in place, she revved up the water sled, intending to get the Hell out of there. But in her panic, she pressed the wrong button, and the engine gave out on her. “Damn it!” She thought, abandoning the sled. “Why do these thing always happen to me–EEEEEEEE!”
Once again, her fear involuntarily emitted from her vocally, earning her lungs a river water bath, before she shut her lips tightly closed. Allura glared at Lotor. How dare he attempt to attack her with his sword! What game was he playing now?!
He turned and swam at her, sword held out at a deadly angle. She quickly got out of the way, but at the loss of her helmet. Sliced into halves, it floated away, along with the pins that held her hair in it’s tight bun.
She now had a halo of gold around her, at times obscuring her view of her attacker. She realized she had to get out of the water if she wanted any chance at survival. Swimming up, and hopefully away from Lotor, she angrily berated Nanny for canceling her swimming lessons. The overzealous woman had forbidden swimming once Allura’s body had started to develop into that of a woman’s. Claiming it was scandalous for a princess to be seen in a bathing suit.
Right now, Allura thought it was better to be scandalous than dead! She quickly rethought that idea when the front of her uniform was slashed open.
Trying not to squeal in indignation, she stopped her attempts at swimming, to cross her arms over her chest. “If he thinks such childish antics will get me to marry him, he’s got another thing coming!”
She turned towards Lotor, hoping to fell him with the force of her angry glare, and paused. He was just…floating there…staring at her with an odd expression on hisface. Even for Lotor, it was creepy!
Suddenly, he was on the move, his sword resheated. She started to move her arms, then realized her breasts might spill out. Allura wasn’t about to give Lotor a free peep show! So she settled for glaring at him defiantly, as he reached her position in the water. His hand reached out, and she cringed, causing him to pause. He then looked into her eyes tentatively, before slowly moving his hand towards her face.
“Oh sure!” Allura thought bitterly. “He just tried to kill me, and NOW he’s gonna try the nice guy routine?” She stilled herself, as he softly caressed her cheek. “Why is he smiling like that?” Suddenly, he grabbed her shoulders, and pulled her tight against his body. Yanking out her mouth piece, he firmly placed his mouth over hers…