Friday, 25 November 1994

The New Age - Chapter Twenty-Four

    Rhiannon once again found herself in the energy depletion chamber. This time her strength was fading rapidly. There was no way she could make another escape attempt. She was barely able to stay conscious. It was because of this she failed to notice a strange glow which started to form not far in front of her. The glow was coming from the floor, and it faded away after a few seconds, leaving a hole in the floor where it was. Then someone began to crawl out of the hole. This figure wore a blue costume. Slowly he walked over to the chamber, and with a small burst of energy released Rhiannon from her prison. She looked up at the stranger and recognised him.
    “It can’t be! Cosmic Kid!”
    “I, too, was captured by Darkmagus.” Cosmic Kid whispered. “I have only just managed to escape.”
    “Do you have enough power for us to leave Mars?”
    “No. I was placed in one of these chambers also.”
    “Our powers should return in time. But no matter what we must get away from here.”
    Rhiannon and Cosmic Kid slowly made their way to the exit. It was a few minutes later when Darkmagus arrived in the chamber. He saw the hole in the floor. He knew instantly what had happened.
    “So! You cannot get away from Mars Rhiannon, not even with the help of Cosmic Kid. My technology can keep you both planet-side while I hunt you down again. You will accept your fate!”

    “The learned decision is to take control of life.” said Merlin. “But each successive development is farther removed from the pure source. To obliterate that which is useless is now a poor strategy for the long run. To hold the world at bay is to become ignorant of it’s constant change. Too much striving for strength can lead to weakness - and weakness cannot preserve life! The being must learn that no one approach can solve every problem, that a constantly corrected repertoire if impulse and strength is the best approach available! Through experience nine finds equilibrium!”

    Two more arrived in the sky above the strange alien spacecraft. Supercop and Might Man had been contacting their superiors in Washington when they had been asked to return to the mansion.
    “I’d been hoping they wouldn’t need me again.” said Mighty Man. “I’ve still got the bruises from my battle with that X guy.”
    “We can’t just sit on the side.” said Supercop. “And I can’t as I’m a member of Anglo-Force.”
    Soon the two Americans landed near the spaceship where the others had gathered.

    “Through time,” said Merlin, “nine can perfect it’s personal approach to life - and be as good at living as it can possibly be!”

    “Good.” said Watt. “That’s the last of us. We’ve put together a select group to strike Darkmagus’ base on Mars. Besides you two, there’s me, Magus, Star Man, Nuclear Man, Red Sun, Fire-Master and Red Star.”
    “Mars?” said Mighty Man. “That will take some time, and from the urgency of your summons you don’t seem to have much time.”
    “I can solve that problem!”
    They turned to see Johangas Khan floating in the air behind them.
    “The genie Shazzan once used a spell to return a time-traveller to his own time.” said Khan. “I can use the same spell to take us to Mars!”
    Khan extended his arms either side of him, and a glow appeared around the small team. A second later they were gone. After they vanished Daniel Reid stood, thanking his lucky stars that he wasn’t able to travel through space. Then he began to look at the spacecraft. He began to stroke his chin as he began to go into deep though. For ages he looked at the spaceship. To him something about it seemed very wrong. What he couldn’t put his finger on.

    “And so,” said Gandalf, “life reaches equilibrium, and yet there is always another step for it to take! Equilibrium is a living thing, not a dead thing, and Merlin and I are proof that life may exist for a very long time, as long as equilibrium exists.”
    “So may you all!” added Merlin.
    “Ten is life in the long run.” continued Gandalf. “And the symbol for ten is the one of something and the zero of nothing - equal and unified.”
    “Life can be one whole!” said Merlin. “And that is all there is to it.”

    A glow appeared on Mars as the small group of heroes arrived. A few seconds after they arrived Magus turned to them all.
    “This is a dangerous mission. Some of us may not come out alive. If anyone wants to pull out now then say so. We won’t think any the worse of you if you do.”
    There was no reply.
    “Good.” said Watt. “Then I suggest we split into two groups. Magus, you take Star Man, Khan, Nuclear Man and Fire-Master. The rest will come with me.”
    Watt then flew towards Magus. The two of them shook hands.
    “Good luck James.” said Magus.
    “And the same to you old boy. I hope to see you again soon.”
    Afterwards they broke off into their groups to begin their assault on Darkmagus’ base.
    Inside the base Darkmagus sat in his monitor room staring at the computer screen. He did not look around as Felicia Martins entered.
    “Have you seen them?” she asked. “The heroes are here.”
    Darkmagus did not answer.
    “Well aren’t you going to do anything?”
    Again Darkmagus did not reply. He just continued to look at the screen in front of him.
    The group containing Watt, Red Sun, Supercop, Mighty Man and Red Star flew towards Mars’ southern hemisphere.
    “It all seems quite normal.” said Red Sun.
    “Appearances can be deceptive cousin.”
    Red Star was correct. Suddenly several hatches began to open up on the surfaces and huge blasters suddenly came out. Less than a second later they began to fire on Watt’s group. Some of them only just managed to get out of the way. Red Star and Red Sun fought back by firing blasts of their own, some of them hitting the countless cannons. After a few minutes the battle seemed to go in favour of the heroes, but suddenly two huge robots appeared on the horizon, and they moved towards the battle sight. Red Sun recognised their make instantly.
    “Sentinels!” What are they doing here?”
    “Darkmagus obviously got the plans from somewhere.” said Supercop.
    One of the sentinels then raised it’s arm and fired a massive energy blast. Red Sun just managed to get out of the way, but the blast struck Supercop, sending him crashing to the ground. Seeing this Red Sun fired a nova blast at the offending robot, but suddenly she found herself in the grasp of the second robot. He held her up in the air and fired an energy blast at here, and because she was trapped she could not escape this time. Watt saw this. He was abut to come to her aid when he was suddenly hit by a laser blast. He then found himself surrounded by laser fire. It trapped him like a cage.

    The group containing Magus, Khan, Star Man, Nuclear Man and Fire-Master flew across the northern hemisphere of Mars in search of Darkmagus’ base. Suddenly, as they flew along, a giant burst of energy hit them all, sending all of them falling to the ground. When they looked up they saw nine men on horseback looking down at them. They were the Black Riders.
    “Turn back now! Turn back now or feel the power of Darkmagus!”
    Magus raised his hand and fired a mystical bolt at the riders which hit them and dispersed them. Soon the others got to their feet and joined the battle. The Black Riders were surprised when Khan suddenly grew to the height of thirty feet and picked one of them up as if he were a toy. He had to drop him however when the Rider prodded his hand with his sword. Then Nuclear Man used his powers to rearrange the structure of their swords, turning them into flowers. This did not please the Black Riders. They began to fight with their hands, and because of this the battle seemed to go in favour of Magus’ group. However, the balance tipped in the other direction when reinforcements arrived in the form of Anthog, Klepto, Boogi, Leer, Gore, Gastro, Frantic, and the dragons Masher and Nidhog. The battle had begun in earnest.

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