A siren resounded across Colony 9. Residents across all three districts stopped what they were doing to look up at the sky.
“Hey!” exclaimed a man. “This siren… It sounds different.”
“Yeah,” agreed another man, “isn’t this Siren 2?”
“It can’t be,” murmured one of the soldiers guarding the mobile artillery. Dread filled him as he saw large black shapes in the sky. “The Mechon?!” Even as he uttered it, the populace started to panic as small black shapes fell from the larger ones. A huge Mechon zoomed between its falling brethren, patrolling the airspace above the colony.
“One large Mechon!” a hysterical soldier shouted into his communicator. “Ten carriers! And an unknown number of units emerging from the carriers!”
“You idiots!” Colonel Vangarre yelled back from the Military District. “Why didn’t you see this lot until they were right on top of us?!”
“But Sir!” the soldier protested. “We thought the Mechon had all been wiped ou-“ his voice turned into a scream as a ball of blue energy exploded on contact with Anti-Air Battery 2.
The line went dead. “Oi!” shouted the colonel. “What’s happening?! Respond!” Vangarre cursed and thumped the metal container beside him in frustration. He barked into the intercom again. “Anti-Air Batteries 1 to 3! Why aren’t my targeting systems online? Don’t let a single one into the colony!”
He immediately jumped off the container and grabbed a passing soldier, spinning him around and shoving his face into the other’s helmet. “Assemble everyone who can fight!” he ordered. “Evacuate the civilians to the shelter!” He thrust the soldier away from him. “Get a move on!” he roared.
“Yes Sir!” The soldier jumped to attention before running off.
“Fire at will!” cried a soldier in one of the remaining Batteries. Smoke lit up the sky as Mechon were shot down before they could reach the ground.
The military watched breathlessly as Anti-Air Battery 3 loosed a shot at one of the Mechon carriers. A cheer rose up inside the control room as it exploded. “We got it!”
The dust cleared. “No, wait!” The soldiers were dismayed to see the carrier still very much intact. A large Mechon was hovering in front of the carrier, and it didn’t appear to be even the slightest bit damaged. “What the..?! Our weapons don’t work on them at all!”
The Mechon‘s shape changed; where before it had looked like some kind of airship, now it took on a humanoid appearance, complete with what could have been arms and legs. Four long, silver claws protruded from the ends of its arm-like appendages and a shining blue cone-shaped tail stuck out from behind it. The pointed laser on its head lifted like a veil, revealing to all what was unmistakeably a face – silver, with a gaping black hole for a mouth and red circles for each of its two eyes.
The colonel slowly lowered his intercom, for once stunned into silence.
“What type of Mechon is that?!” shouted a horrified soldier. “I’ve never seen one like it!”
Snapping back into focus, Vangarre yelled into his communicator: “You slackers, fire! Shoot it down!”
The batteries immediately complied, but the faced Mechon dodged their bullets and swooped down to Anti-Air Battery 3, running his claws along it so it exploded in a great fireball.
The first wave of Mechon dropped into the Colony. Dunban raised himself from his bed, gritting his teeth at the pain in his right arm. He made his way toward the stairs.
Shulk, Reyn and Fiora came running into Colony 9 just in time to see a Mechon M72 pick up a man in its claws. It left as they crossed the bridge, and they stopped in front of Fiora’s house.
“They’re eating people!” A shudder shook Shulk.
“It’s horrible!” Fiora felt sick.
“Is Dunban OK?!” Shulk looked up at the house.
“Fiora! Go and check on him!” said Reyn urgently.
“O- OK!” Fiora quickly ran into her house to find her brother.
As she left, a Mechon M63 stalked over from the Central Plaza, spinning its claws in a challenge to the boys.
“Heads up, Reyn!” Shulk pulled out his weapon as Reyn did the same.
“If this thing wants a fight,” growled Reyn, “let’s give it one!”
Reyn ran up to the Mechon, vainly hitting its leg with his weapon to distract it. Shulk snuck up behind the machine. “Turn… Strike! Reyn, now!!”
Reyn jumped back to avoid an attack. He leapt forward and with a wild cry and took a swipe at the machine’s legs. “Going down!” He and Shulk backed away from the toppled Mechon. “See?” Reyn laughed. “Didn’t stand a chance!”
“It’s not that easy!” Shulk replied. “We’ve disabled it, but only for now. It’ll reactivate soon!”
At that moment, Fiora came running out to meet them. She was startled to see the Mechon lying on the ground.
“Where’s Dunban?” Shulk asked quickly.
“He’s gone!” Fiora panted. “I can’t find him anywhere.”
“What?!” Reyn was alarmed. “He ain’t fit enough to face these things!”
“Reyn!” said Shulk sharply. “Let’s get to the lab!”
“The lab?” Reyn repeated. “Of course!” he grinned. “The Monado’s there!”
“Exactly,” Shulk nodded. “The Monado can take out Mechon.” He, Reyn and Fiora dashed into the Commercial District, but were then forced to slow down. It was crawling with Mechon; there was not a place they could go where they would not be attacked by any of them.
The trio turned left at the entrance to the district, slowly making their way around the outside to avoid any fighting. Shulk felt nervous as they edged around one of the M82; but the machine stared straight ahead, failing to notice the Homs that were sneaking around it.
As they came around the corner where the Gem Man’s deserted stall sat, they were dismayed to see a small group of Mechon blocking the path to the Central Plaza. There were three: a small, hovering M31 Scout Unit, an M72 and another huge M82. Looking up at the walkway above them, they could see twice as many Mechon up there, all M69 models. It would be faster and more effective, Shulk decided, to take on the group of three.
Shulk glanced around. There was an open warehouse next to the Gem Man’s stall, close to where the M31 and M72 Mechon were. It gave him an idea.
“Fiora, Reyn!” Shulk turned to them. “There’s no way we’re sneaking past these Mechon without them seeing us. We’ll lure the two smaller Mechon away from the large one and defeat them there.”
“And the big one?” asked Fiora in a small voice.
Shulk hesitated. “We’ll have to take it out. There’s not enough time to go through the Residential District, and besides, there would probably be Mechon on guard there too.”
“All right,” said Reyn, “let’s do this!”
The three of them ducked into the warehouse next to the stall; in the centre of it was a large cylinder container lying on its side, sitting inside a metal frame to hold it steady. Reyn placed the ether cylinders just inside the metal frame beside the larger cylinder.
The M72 was standing near the cylinder with its back turned. Shulk snuck up behind the machine, spinning as he ran to hit it with his Turn Strike. It rounded on Shulk and tried to swipe at him even as he jumped back to avoid it. Reyn dashed in and toppled it, and together the three of them quickly destroyed the machine before it had a chance to get up.
The trio hid behind the cylinder again as Reyn picked up a rock and, taking careful aim, threw it at the M31. The Mechon turned and, seeing Reyn waving at it, sped towards him. Scout Units were all shaped like raindrops with a propeller attached to their pointy tops and a mounted laser fixed to their undersides. Their bottoms curved inwards to contain a single red eye with which they perceived the world around them.
The party quickly destroyed the Scout Unit before setting their grim sights on the M82. Over four times as tall as Reyn, the thing stood barring their way. Shulk noted the sharp curves of its claws, the sickle-like protrusion at the top of its right arm, the perfectly round head sitting atop its small, fat, metallic body.
Reyn turned to Shulk and Fiora. “I’ll distract it, and one of you two will have to break it,” he said listlessly. “Then I can topple it, and we’ll finish it off.”
Shulk and Fiora were gripped with fear; it was she who spoke first. “But that’s too dangerous! Reyn, you could get seriously hurt!”
“So what else are we gonna do?!” Reyn demanded. He looked to Shulk. “I can do this man, trust me.” He grinned.
Shulk slowly nodded. “It’s the only way.”
Noticing Fiora getting angry, Reyn quickly intervened. “Fiora, I can handle this. Trust me.” He forced a grin. Fiora hesitated, and then relented with a nod.
Reyn gripped his gunlance tightly, his heart pounding. He forced his voice to remain steady. “I’ll draw its attention and get it facing the other way. Then you two sneak up and break it so I can topple it. Got it?” When the other two nodded, Reyn fixed his eyes on the Mechon before him. “Then let’s take this thing down!”
Shulk and Fiora ducked into the warehouse as Reyn charged the M82. Reyn grinned when the creature noticed him and dodged the claw it swung at him. He dashed between its legs and whacked it with his weapon, which bounced right off it. He spun around to face it, watching as it moved quickly towards him.
Shulk dashed out from the warehouse, Fiora in tow. They struck the machine in unison. It swung around, seemingly confused, its flailing claws snipping off the end of Fiora’s hair. Reyn shouted, and it turned back to him. He rolled towards it, a claw slamming into the ground where he had stood but a moment ago. Reyn came out of the roll and immediately swept his weapon arm wide, connecting with one of his target’s legs. The Mechon fell on its back, crushing the walkway behind it and the M69 that had been roaming it.
Shulk, Reyn and Fiora leapt on to the M82 and started to hack away at it. They jumped backwards when the Mechon began to stir; badly damaged, but still able to fight. “How much damage can it take!?” Fiora cried.
Without a word, Reyn scrambled on to the Mechon’s body and, with an almighty roar, plunged his weapon into the metal connecting the creature’s head to the rest of its body. The head flew off the machine, and it lay still.
Brimming with confidence, the trio quickly took down the handful of Mechon M69 units that had jumped down from the crumbling walkway to attack them.
Reyn was surveying the pile of Mechon scrap when both he and his friends heard shouts coming from the military district. They looked at each other, dreading what was to happen next, before taking off across the bridge towards the central plaza.
“You blasted Mechon!” shouted Colonel Vangarre. “You think you can do what you want in our colony!” Reyn was horrified to see him surrounded by at least a dozen Mechon.
“The colonel!” Reyn cried. “The guys!”
Homs soldiers were lined up in the military district, ready to fight the Mechon. They cried out as the Mechon struck their shields, beating them to the ground. Many soldiers began to flee.
“Men!” roared the colonel. “Don’t give up this position! Run, and I’ll kill you myself!” He glared at the men running from the Mechon, furious at the show of cowardice.
The ground beneath Vangarre’s feet shook, and he swayed as something extremely heavy landed behind him.
Turning, he found himself looking at red eyes set into a shining silver face. He laughed nervously. “What the hell are you? A Mechon with a face?” He took a couple of steps back, refusing to break eye contact. “Grin at me, will you!?” He pulled his gun around and fired right into its gaping mouth, the recoil from his weapon sending him flying backwards through the air.
Colonel Vangarre quickly looked up and saw the Mechon making its way towards him, completely undamaged. “What!?” Didn’t even dent it!” The Mechon merely stared at him.
A single M72 unit broke from the ranks of Mechon streaming into the district. It opened up its propellers and slammed them into the colonel, who blocked the attack with his gun. The Mechon pressed against him; the colonel pushed back, gritting his teeth.
The faced Mechon stuck a claw into a large shipping container, which opened up so some spindle-legged Mechon could escape. The colonel screamed as the faced Mechon lazily tossed the container on top of him. The container exploded, and the faced Mechon changed form before taking to the air.
The trio ran into the military district and quickly picked off the occupying Mechon one by one. They then gathered around the entrance to the lab, which they were dismayed to see had been caved in.
Reyn closed his eyes, seething. “The colonel… the guys… I’m gonna destroy every last one of those damn Mechon!”
Fiora stared hopelessly at the pile of rubble. “The entrance…”
Reyn cried out in frustration. “We’ll never get in there now!”
“Wait,” said Shulk quickly, “let me think here…” Shulk racked his brain for the solution he knew must exist. He gasped and turned to his friends. “Reyn! Fiora! There’s still the mobile artillery!”
“Right!” Reyn exclaimed, suddenly excited. “If we recharge it with those ether cylinders we collected, we can blast our way in!”
“It’s in the residential district,” Fiora informed the boys.
“Great!” Shulk smiled.
“All right!” Reyn drew himself up tall. “Time to avenge the colonel and the boys!”
Images taken from scalz311 (http://www NULL.youtube NULL.com/user/scalz311)‘s YouTube channel.