KnM Blade - In Destiny's Way

Kixi Rajki, a professional high speed racer, is a seemingly average citizen of the United Systems of Sol in the 31st century. Going by the alias of Kay Blade, she is also a secret agent for an underground resistance cell intent on bringing down the powerful freedom restricting government. Mako Jhasmin Zaneca, alias eM Blade, and Kixi's lover, recently trained up as an agent, is also an expert computer slicer and hacker in her own right. She must accompany Kixi on what will be her first mission, and with all certainty, an extremely dangerous mission. Choosing arrest in order to save her lover, the two narrowly escape death, and consequently trigger in motion an unprecedented course of events. Unwittingly, her actions will forever change the balance of power, and with it the face of humanity as a space faring species. More info here. http://www.kixi-rajki.com/full-outline-of-storyline http://www.kixi-rajki.com/the-k3k-universe-in-detail

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7. The Prowess of Kay Blade

Chapter 7 : The Prowess of Kay Blade

At LST 20:00, CE 3016-05-27

We would be the last ones to be brought forward to fight in the arena. Even from deep inside our cell, we could hear the roar and cheering from the crowd above us as the night's action slowly unfolded. Both Mako and I sat quietly, awaiting the guards that would soon come get us to lead us out. We had been in the same dim cold cell for two days now. Since Cerberus' last visit two days ago, no one had come to visit us since, save the guard who's duty it was to give us our once a day and only meal, something that we had to ration, as it barely even qualified as a satisfactory source of nutrition.

I had passed the two days of our solitary confinement practicing my newly discovered gift of telekinesis. I got better and better at it with every passing go I had at it. Initially I had to concentrate really hard to hold on to my ability to use this skill after summoning it. Yet I found the more and more hatred and anger that I had building up within me, the stronger and better I got at it. However I did find that the more and more I used it, the more tiresome it would be on my body overall both mentally and physically. Thus why this morning I had decided to simply do nothing but rest in my cell. I had to save all my energy for this very moment, our eventual ingression into the arena of death.

It seemed like an eternity for the guards to come and collect us. Although I obviously wasn't looking forward to what lay ahead. I always found it pointless to delay the inevitable. Thus waiting in anticipation was definitely one of my weaker traits. The sensation I was feeling at the moment was very similar to how I felt before participating in a high speed F-Zero race. F-Zero was basically racing using land vehicles that could reach speeds of over 500 or so kph, and run on roads and surfaces that were not always flat on the ground. Some in fact were on sides like walls, and others the ceilings of tunnels and the under part of bridges. Of course these courses were modified to allow these vehicles to run through them, vehicles that only would remain glued to those surfaces by the sheer speed they would be travelling at. The massive spoilers fitted on such vehicles, would act as wings when the vehicle was upside down and thus pushing it up on the surface above it, coupled with the total insanity of the driver and co-driver behind the wheel allowed for a successful running of such speed demon machines. The only difference between that and fighting in this arena was that although one could say I would be playing with death racing an F-Zero car, the obvious difference is that no one would actually be trying to kill me while racing an F-Zero car. I generally looked forward to the thrill of an F-Zero race, thus unlike now, the anticipation prior wasn't all that agonising. I slowly wondered to myself, dying here tonight as Kay Blade, eventually they'll find out that Kixi Rajki, Zed's primary F-Zero race driver would be that same woman. Although I was confident that Zed could talk his way out of that as simply not knowing. Hopefully, I continued to think, as I most certainly didn't want my death to also mark the end of Arjian. I wondered further more to get my mind off the upcoming fight. My co-driver, Kajtia Xiz'injhürek, who would she team up with after I'm no longer around. My train of thought was then suddenly interrupted as the guards who would lead us out to the arena suddenly entered. They were quick as the cell's door whooshed open and the lead guard lowered the force field. Two guards then approached both Mako and I. They were definitely rough and not shy about matters at hand either as they grabbed us, spun us around and then pinned us both to the wall. With our heads facing the wall, they then held one hand firmly on our necks, as they crudely pushed our heads into the wall, and then hand cuffed us both with their other hand.

"Time for you two scumbags to meet your fates. I hope you die quickly bitch face." One would say at me as he then spun me around after I had been bound, and then kicked me in the back motioning me to move forward. I observed the other guard who was dealing with Mako. At least he was a little nicer on her as he only spun her around and motioned her to start walking. We then both found ourselves walking through a not so brightly lit up tunnel that lead to a part of the arena most likely where we would get our finally officially sentencing before having to fight. The crowd by now knew we were on our way out as I could hear the roaring of their anticipation of us as we walked the tunnels. Roaring that soon turned to booing and jeering once we were out and could be seen in full view by the 200,000 plus spectators .

The guards walked us to the area of the arena known as The Presidential Box. There the President of the USS took up a very visible and prominent position, which was located on a podium at the centre of the narrower side of the arena on the north side. With him were several other officials both civilian and military, while certainly present were also Cerberus and her 17 year old daughter Paige and General Dekker.

Still with both our arms bound to our backs, the guards made both Mako and myself face the party present in the Presidential Box just so they could read out our final sentence to the massive crowd who had come to witness our final moments and imminent execution. I looked up at them as they looked down at us. The elevated Presidential Box was erected on a platform called the pulvinar which had stairs on one side. The Presidential Box was raised above the podium on a dais. There were four large columns. Each surmounted by a statue of victory which symbolised the glory and greatness of the USS and humanity. This was all very reminiscent of a Roman gladiatorial arena of ancient times, some 4000 years ago. Only difference was, this was a lot larger and the structure and all things in it including its defences were far more technologically advanced.

The President Atul Drex, Cerberus, General Dekker, and several others including Cerberus' youngest daughter Paige, presided over the gathering as I mentioned earlier. This would be the part where both Mako and I got sentenced I gathered, yet I didn't expect that there would be any chance of open mindedness from the lot of them as they prepared to carry out our sentence. I observed them carefully, noting the hatred especially in Cerberus' eyes who stood about half a metre back to the right of the president. In reality, this wasn't gonna be a hearing nor a trial. It was a proclamation of pure hatred to those who would dare speak, act and challenge their tyrannical ways, and a means of setting an example to others as to what would happen if they too were caught. It would be nothing more than that.

Unsurprisingly Cerberus stepped forward and announced, “You have been charged and found guilty of both espionage and murder of the first degree. You in particular Kay Blade have been charged for the senseless cold blooded murder of Helen Jane Jamison, a loving wife and mother of two children.” As she spoke those words, a huge holo image of Helen appeared floating in the centre of the arena for the entire crowd to see, as booing could be heard along with death chants and countless words of hatred. Murderous scum! Killers! Cowards! Die you pathetic scum! Animals! I just stood there in silence and waited.

It was clear to me that these people were all eluded from the truth. If only they knew the real cold hard truth about the government. One day they will, I thought to myself.

“Do you have anything to say before your sentence is carried out?” Cerberus asked as the crowd suddenly died down and the arena fell into silence. Silence that would only last a few minutes at most before returning back into roars of cheering and booing.

Calmly and not at all shaken nor intimidated, I stared the woman I hated most straight in the eye. “The only thing I have to say is that we here are freedom fighters and that you are nothing more than tyrants and liars, the lot of you. Our deaths will not change anything, nor stop the fact that sooner or later the people you rule over with fear, will discover the truth and rebel as we will have become martyrs for their cause. You personally Cerberus had better hope I die tonight as I promise you this, and that is that I desire nothing more right now than to kill you painfully and slowly. That I swear I will carry out wherever I see you stand."

Cerberus chuckled. “A rather touching speech, but you just keep telling all that to yourself, and making yourself believe your own ludicrous lies. In reality, and to all those good law abiding citizens out there, such as those who have come to witness this glorious night, we here seek only to strengthen ourselves as a nation, one strong united nation, and one that will continue to grow and prosper for the good of humanity. As we do, we also endeavour to do all we can to oust and rid this great nation that reaches well beyond this star system, from those who wish to threaten and destroy the very way in which we wish to govern it. People like you two criminals. So here were are tonight, ready and proud to rid two such terrorists from ever menacing us again. May your deaths serve as an example to others who wish to threaten the ideals that govern the ways of our glorious nation."

"You have such a vivid imagination, it's a pity and shame all these people believe it. However mark my words, you may have possibly won thus battle, but you will never win the war." I quickly countered retorting.

"Enough of this! Now it is time to get on with it!” Came the voice of the president angrily slamming his fist. “Carry out the sentence. I want to see them suffer! Take them to the centre of the arena and then release the first wave of battle droids!"

The arena once more erupted into cheers as the guards then removed our bindings from our hands, while another two approached us both and handed us a weapon each. The weapon was a special type of sword. It was known as an X-Blade. This sword had an extremely strong and durable blade. One that could withstand hit after hit of laser fire and cut through the hardest of metals. The reason for amazing fact was that the on the swords hilt was a device, one that would allow a protective deflector shield to be generated around the blade's surface. This allowed for the deflection and blocking of laser fire without the eventual damaging of the sword, as long as it's wielder possessed quicker than average reflexes and speed. That part was definitely something in which both Mako and I did have given our genetic enhancements from birth. However, the swords deflector shield would clearly prevent the sharp blade from cutting or penetrating anything. Therefore the shield could be turned on and off by a small switch on the hilt allowing for the wielder to then cut through opponents or objects as need be. I personally preferred a standard re-enforced Katana, however given the amount of droids they were likely to throw at us, in this situation the X-Blade was by far the only choice when it came down to swords versus guns.

After we took our weapons the guards forcibly turned us around to face the centre of the arena. Again they pushed us both in the back which jerked us forward and motioned us to start walking to the arena's centre. The guard who had originally binded my hands slapped me hard across the face causing me to fall to the ground.

"That one is personal you wretched filth! Now get the fuck up!" He said as he spat in my face and kicked me dead centre in the back. He then placed the bottom of his boot onto the side of my neck and pushed down hard on it with his leg. Not only did that hurt a lot, it was also a real wonder on how he just didn't end up snapping my neck clean there and then. He then released his boot from my neck as I was left gasping for air on the ground, and proceeded to kick me on the side of my ribs a couple of times. I knew there and then that he had broken a few of my ribs as a result, as his actions absolutely killed. I then slowly tried to get up. "I said get the fuck up whore!" The man was a real work of art. Long hair, long beard with scars all over his face and looked like he hadn't showered in over a month! Although I was getting up as told, he had no patience and simply pulled me back up on my feet by pulling me up by my hair. I yelped in horror as he then kicked me in the back to continue moving forward which I then managed to do stumbling. I could smell the fresh blood slowly oozing from nose as a result of the guard's prior slap to my face, as I breathed erratically. Even though I tried to stay calm, my body was all freaked out as a result of the sudden trauma. At least the other guard did not give Mako the same treatment, I managed somehow to observe. Finally we would reach the centre as the crowd booed, jeered and yelled abuse and insults of all sorts towards us. The two guards who had escorted us to the centre had turned back and left us by this stage.

I turned my head and spoke to Mako. “Don’t be afraid." She smiled back at me, her expression one of genuine calm at least for now.

“I’m not afraid to die,” she then replied, her voice thick and soft. “At least we can die together since we were meant for one another in this life and the next.”

Then she said it, and it was real and genuine and warm. “You're the greatest thing that I've ever had. I could never have asked for more than having you. I love you.”

“I know," I replied, "I know." I looked at her, my beautiful little sweetheart for a good half a minute smiling. By now we had both taken our places into the centre of the arena, readied for action. The feeling that the 200,000 excited spectators gave us as the announcer repeated out our sentence out once more was simply mind blowing. Their sheer presence animated an unmistakable aura that felt like it alone would crush us and kill us.

"The terrorist criminals before you have been convicted of espionage, treason and countless violent acts including murder against the State of the United Systems of Sol,” announced the speaker. “Their sentence of death is to be carried out in this arena immediately!”

The wild cheering deafened us. “Unfortunately there are a lot of twisted citizens around here that like their executions,” I said dryly. Then the first lot of opponents appeared from a distance. Attack battle droids armed with guns, and charging straight at us. I stood there at the ready as did Mako. I could see the nervousness in her body posture, although there was no denying it, things were not looking good for us. Then the first wave of assault droids got closer. I counted five as the crowd began cheering wildly sensing a quick easy kill. Well if we were going to die tonight, I had no intention of giving them the satisfaction of a quick easy kill. I would take as many of them down as I could.

"Mako listen to me carefully as I'm only going to say this once. Take up position to my left flank and about five metres back. I'm going to be our first line of defence. Anything that slips past me will be all yours to take care of, got it?"

There wasn't even time for Mako to confirm that she had understood my instructions, yet I could sense where she was, and knew she had done precisely as told. The two front droids fired there guns at me, since I was in front. Hoping they would make quick work out of me, and then finish off their job by taking out Mako. Although the three droids behind them would soon realise that they would be getting more than what they had bargained for, after I deflected the laser gun fire from the first two droids back at them with my X-Blade destroying them both. As both went up in fireballs, the 200,000 or so spectators erupted in cheers. The next three droids decided that clearly that wasn't the approach to take, not after what had happened to their two fellow droids seconds prior. This time the middle one came straight at me with all guns blazing, while the other two decided to flank us to the right and left of us. Although destroying the middle droid was easy, as I disposed of it in the same way as the initial two, the other two would prove trickier. I closed my eyes and thought of my hate towards Cerberus. Knowing that this method or technique would summon my telekinesis abilities. I had practiced this a lot in the two days of incarceration prior to this moment in the arena and could now summon it quite quickly. As I could feel my invisible hands stretch outwards, I spun around, ducked and then rolled backwards as I pushed the two remaining droids into one another at quite a remarkable speed, that they both exploded into a ball of fire sending shrapnel in every direction. Some of that shrapnel did end up hitting me, but didn't do any serious damage. The massive raw from the crowd was absolutely electrifying. They were without a doubt getting their monies worth tonight.

"You were incredibly Kay, really you were!"

"Well it ain't over yet sweetie, that was just the first wave, the second is about to enter and will undoubtedly be a more considerable challenge, not that that first wave already wasn't. Get ready Mako, maintain position and be ready to fight. I got a good feeling you'll have to do some of the fighting as well this time around."

And I wasn't wrong about that either. This time it would be 12 armed droids coming for us. However their attack formation was a lot different this time. Four came at us head on, while the others came four to our left flank, and four to our right flank respectively.

"Fuck!" That was my natural reaction, as the crowd's roaring made it pointless to even yell out commands to Mako. Without any further thought nor hesitation, as I clearly hadn't been given the luxury for any of that, I leaped a good three metres in the air as I charged forward at the oncoming droids. Using telepathy I instructed Mako to take the four flanking us to our left. As I flipped in the air I could see their volleys of laser fire whiz straight underneath me. Pointing my sword downwards I then struck the first of the four droids dead centre through its head, instantly destroying its head. As I fuelled my hate further and further towards Cerberus, everything began to appear as if it had slowed down. Moving in between the droids, evading their strikes or fire, and then striking back seemed effortless. After destroying the first droid, I landed on my knees and then rolled forward. As I did so, I rolled in between the legs of another droid and gutted it with my X-Blade. The other two took aim at me and fired, however I was able to spin around behind the gutted droid which was in the process of collapsing to the ground, and use it as a shield. Streaks of laser fire that would have otherwise hit me, totally destroyed that droid as I then used my telekinesis powers to hurl what was left of that droid into one of the two attacking droids, momentarily getting it off balance. Deflecting laser bolts with my X-Blade back at the other, then proved to be relatively easy, as I destroyed it leaping once more into the air, decapitating the one that had monetarily lost its balance. I quickly spun around just in time to block some of the laser fire from four of the other droids which had been flanking me from the right. It was however too much to deflect in one go. Instinctively I leaped into the air flipping over them, which resulted in me landing behind them. As I did, I spun around 180 degrees with my X-Blade held high decapitating one, then quickly I moved to the side of another, as the three remaining droids spun around to shoot me. I sliced another clean through the torso as I finally slid on my knees around the last two, and used my telekinesis to ram them into each other. They both exploded directly in front of me. I had to drop my X-Blade and use both my arms to protect my eyes and face, so that the resulting shrapnel could not hit me directly.

Cerberus who was watching on, wasn’t quite so pleased at what she was witnessing. “This isn’t how it’s supposed to be!” She yelled at President Drex. “They're supposed to be dead by now!”

“Patience,” the calm President replied.

“No!” Cerberus shouted back at him. “Can't someone just shot them, or at least shoot Kay. She's the one who's doing most of the damn fighting, and if I'm seeing correctly has some sort of telekinetic powers!”

"Yes that much I figured out. Why wasn't I nor General Dekker ever notified of this fact Cerberus?" The president continued to speak calmly and relaxed.

"I honestly had no idea, she never made any use of this skill in my presence."

"Well that definitely beckons the question then on how did you capture her so easily? Although I already know the answer. The other woman, she stayed back for her, as otherwise I'm quite certain that from what I'm seeing at this very moment, that she could've easily escaped from your clutches. She definitely has talent. Someone with skills like hers would make a valuable asset for our military."

General Dekker turned an amused expression Cerberus' way, and nodded knowingly that president had made an extremely good point.

"I understand your point, but if she defeats all three waves then what?"

"We grant her her freedom as per the rules."

"I mean no disrespect sir, but have you gone totally mad!"

The president simply gave Cerberus a broad cold smile as he responded to Cerberus' outburst. "If I have her killed after she were to win, what credibility will the people of our fine nation think of us, and of me personally. I would be deemed a liar, as will our entire government. People will begin to rebel and try to overthrow us. Then the resistance in which she represents will slowly get on the verge of eventually overthrowing us." The president's tone of voice then turned from that of soft and calm, to one that was deep and full of confidence. “Patience, Cerberus,” The president said to the fuming woman. “She will die along with the other that she seeks to protect so dearly.”

I was on my feet again within seconds. I could see Mako, she had managed to eliminate two of the four droids that had been attacking her. Yet I could see she was struggling. The two remaining droids almost had her beaten as she struggled to hold up her weapon and even block their laser fire. I ran at full pace towards her, but I didn't leap in the air nor jump. Instead I ran straight at the droid closest to Mako. As I got to it, I slid on my arse lifting my sword in the air, and then in the process severed off the droid's arm and consequently its gun. This allowed Mako to destroy it with her own sword leaving the last remaining droid. However the entire ordeal proved to be a little too much even for me, as the use of telekinesis coupled with my ability to move quickly finally caught up with me and I began to falter. It was only a split second of fatigue and lapse of my concentration, as I got up I simply wasn't quick enough to anticipate that final droid pointing his gun at me and firing his shot. I managed to raise my X-Blade at the last second to stop it from hitting me dead centre in the chest, however the laser bolt ricocheted off the side of my blade, bouncing straight for my body. It skimmed past my chest area and hit me dead centre in the under part of my front right shoulder area. I yelped in excruciating pain as I dropped my weapon and staggered backwards. I could hear the roar of the crowd amplify by an even greater magnitude, as they could now sense my imminent defeat along with my ultimate death. The droid was about to fire its killer blow at me when first it's arm holding the gun was severed off, and then its head as Mako swung past it with several clean manoeuvring strikes. I was about to fall to my knees, defeated knowing that we now stood no chance against the final wave of whatever was in store for us next. Mako dropped her weapon and ran to me, catching me, and then held me tightly in her arms.

Those in the presidential box saw without a doubt, the prowess Kay Blade blunder and then pay for it dearly. The second wave of droids had been destroyed by the duo, but at an ultimate cost, and no thanks again to Mako's sheer inability to even come close to the skill and level of her counterpart. Kay had been injured, and it was clear to everyone that she no longer would be able to hold her own for the final challenge.

“You see?” The president calmly asked. "Their deaths are now imminent." Cerberus had finally calmed down given the change in tide and simply nodded to the president.

"I'm so sorry for being such a failure. I've once again proved my uselessness. If I could fight nearly as good as you, you wouldn't have gotten hit trying to save me. You really deserve much better than me Kixi, I'm sorry, I'm sorry and I'm sorry."

Mako had by now burst into tears. I wrapped my arms around her, despite the pain I had in my right shoulder and in turn also held her tightly. I looked across the arena through the corner of my eye and could see the huge monstrosity of a droid charging at us. This one had no guns. No. Instead it would grab us one at a time and crush us and rip us to bits like an enraged beast. I had no more answers. I was injured, no longer able to wield a weapon , and totally exhausted from the overuse of my telekinetic abilities. This was it I thought to myself. The end. By this stage, Mako was shaking in fear as I held her ever so tightly.

"Kixi I'm scared. I really am scared." She cried out as she dug her head into my chest.

"It's gonna be alright my sweet little love. We are together, that's all that matters now. In this life and into our journey into the next, I'll love you always and forever." I then held her as tight as I could, just to calm down her shaking and to comfort her as much as possible during what I believed would be our final moments. By now I could feel the wind brush upwards into my face which was making my hair along with Mako's hair wave in an upwards direction. "It's okay Mako, it's okay. We're together forever now." I said those words softly into her ear as I slowly brushed her hair with one of my hands, and could feel her heartbeat racing through me. I was about to shut my eyes as the huge monster like droid began to zero in on us. For a moment, I looked up to the clear force field dome high above us and saw what appeared to be something very unusual. Several of the hovering security hovercars had hit the invisible barrier above us, exploding into huge fireballs before disappearing. Then I looked down again at the approaching droid. It was huge! I saw its robotic claws come out reading itself for the final kill, as the crowd once more erupted into a deafening roar.

5 minutes earlier.

High above the arena, several armed security Skycom vehicles hovered. Ālrai was alone in one of those hover vehicles as he observed the action below. His two fellow comrades were holding their own quite gallantly he would observe, but as predicted, the tide was quickly turning away from their favour.

"Miyuki, how long until you are ready to fire that EMP burst?"

"In approximately ten minutes."

"No, that's not gonna cut it. I can see things are getting dire at centre stage. They'll both be dead in five."

Miyuki, another agent of Arjian had managed to foil through security and sneak her way to the very bottom of the arena, where dozens of machinery were housed that provided power as well as many other essentials for the running and functionality of the arena. Given that Zed's was Skycom's primary maintenance and repairer of its vehicles, naturally their owner Jak Zed had his connections elsewhere in other related industries. That would explain just how Miyuki had managed to not only get into where she currently was, but also managed to bring in the necessary equipment to convert one of the under arena's generators into an electromagnetic pulse generator. The plan sounded simple enough, fire the pulse which would be strong and large enough to shut down not just the entire arena, but all electronic devices in it, the attacking droids fighting KnM Blade, the force field covering the top of the arena preventing anyone from trying to land in it, and lastly all vehicles hovering directly above it. Problem was, Ālrai was amongst the Skycom hovercars directly above the arena. He would hover just a little higher, at a calculated distance just as Miyuki fired the EMP pulse. Ālrai's vehicle would survive the blast as all other vehicles, enemy vehicles would tumble and crash into the arena below them, hopefully not hitting the two women they were trying to rescue.

"Okay got it Ālrai, but you are gonna have to raise your vehicle's altitude higher than we originally planned for. Reason being, is if I have to fire the pulse very much now, it gives me no time to calculate the exact area the blast will effect. At the original distance coordinates, it may still hit you to, and that will obviously thwart our rescue plans since you are vital to go rescue the girls, not to mention, you'll get caught if not killed beforehand yourself."

"Yeah, yeah I get it. Don't need the whole explanation Miyuki, but thanks anyway."

"Oh and one last thing, because you'll be a lot higher in the air, once the arena's power is kaput, I'm anticipating it will take about five minutes at best for auxiliary power to kick in. I can't sabotage that, no damn time. You are gonna have to dive your hovercar in hard and get them. If you're still in there when power is restored, you'll be trapped under the arena's force field dome. Obviously that will not be good for anyone."

"Okay affirmative, I'm ready to execute my part at your command. Oh and one last thing Miyuki, please get the hell out of there the moment you fire that pulse."

"Don't you worry Ālrai, I don't plan to stick around. My get away vehicle awaits me, I'll sneak out once all the sudden chaos, panic and confusion starts. Everything will be so frantic that I bet no one will even notice me."

"Good, because last thing we want is for you to get caught too."

"Thanks Ālrai, but I can take good care of myself. Okay I'm ready, firing weapon in T-minus 10 seconds, I suggest you build up some altitude now!"

Ālrai didn't hesitate to fire his forward guns at the two Skycom vehicles ahead of him. Hitting them both dead centre, the unsuspecting officers inside of them had no idea what had hit them, as both vehicles burst into balls of fire, falling and crashing into the invisible dome below them. Ālrai then immediately pointed the nose of his hovercar straight up into the night sky. Five seconds later, he observed first the arena's lights go out in full, as then it's force field dome collapsed, and finally all the Skycom hovercars that had been hovering where he had been several seconds earlier, all shut down and fall downward towards the arena's ground. The mega pulse wave from the EMP pulse converged towards Ālrai's vehicle, but fortunately for him, he had moved just out of its range. Had he only moved to the original distance of their plans, indeed he would have been hit. Ālrai observed the exploding Skycom hovercars far below as they crashed and burned, along with what appeared to be a monstrosity of a droid shut down and stop. The pulse had passed past him safely, and without a second thought he swung his hovercar into a steep nose dive and headed straight for the arena's centre stage.

"Mako! Mako! Get your head out!" I yelled at her seconds after the arena had fallen into darkness, and all attacking machines and droids had fallen silent with it. Deafening explosions from hovercars crashing all around us lit up pockets of the darkness. It had felt like suddenly we had been teleported into a battlefield, as debris from the exploding crashing vehicles sent shrapnel and debris in all directions.

"What is happening Kixi, is this what death looks like? I'm scared Kixi!"

"We are not dead. It's gotta be a rescue attempt from Arjian." Just as I spoke those words, Ālrai came in directly above us, his vehicle's bright lights shining directly in our faces. He was that close that I could feel the wind from his vehicle as he slowly began to land. Both Mako and I had to place the top of our arms on our foreheads to stop his bright lights from totally blinding us. Of course I hadn't known it was him just yet, despite it clearly being a rescuer, until he was hovering only centimetres from the ground, popped open his door and yelled out for us to hurry up and get in, something we promptly did.

He didn't wait for us to even buckle in. The moment we were in his hovercar, he frantically began rising. And it was obvious why. The arena's auxiliary power had just kicked in. The lights were coming back on, as was the domed force field.

"Hang on girls, this is gonna be close." Ālrai shouted his voice over the hovercar's screaming engines. I looked up through the vehicle's glass roof and it was obvious to me, as it was to our pilot, that indeed it would be close, as the opened gap above us was getting smaller and smaller.

"Hang in there, we're gonna make it. C'mon! C'mon! C'mon! Move! Move! Move!"

Then whoosh! I heard the noise, a noise of absolute utter relief, well at least for now, after Ālrai had turned the nose of our hovercar a full 90 degree upwards. A move necessary to fit through the small hole that was left for our vehicle to fit through the closing dome. I, along with Mako were pushed back on our seats, as we saw the stars and moon of the night's sky above us. Then almost instantaneous, Ālrai would level flight, as the full view of the beautiful always busy fast moving Celestia City night sky traffic came into full view, as did the many endless skyscrapers that surrounded us.

"Yeah c'mon! Ālrai exclaimed.

Mako had taken up the front passenger seat next to Ālrai, while I took a seat in the back. I turned my head to look to the rear of us, and could see a group of Skycom vehicles as well as police hovercars closing in on our position fast. "Um Ālrai, I believe it's best you step on it. Looks like we have company!" Despite my ordeal in the arena below, I somehow never tended to lose my sense of sarcasm, as I raised both my eyebrows laughing sarcastically. "I don't fancy sticking around, and neither does Mako, so if you can kindly gun it Ālrai." I finished saying motioning forward with both my arms and hands. Though it wasn't like he actually needed an invitation to do so. Ālrai was already in the process of fully accelerating the vehicle, zooming us into one of the busy lit up sky laneways up ahead. Of course and without hesitation, the mob behind us eagerly followed. Their dangerous pursuit of us in Celestia's busy night sky traffic would now commence.

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