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The following additional labels have been provided:
Assault
Graphic Violence


CONTENT WARNING
The following content contains discussion of emotional and sexual abuse and homophobia. Please proceed at your own discretion.
WARNING: PROFANITY FOLLOWS
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Season 2, Episode 2
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Air date 11/7/21
Written by CaT
Episode Guide
Previous
Break X Chain
Next
Golden X Spirit

Silver X Soul is the second episode of Tech Cross Season 2, and serves as the fourteenth episode overall.

Episode

Teresa awoke with a start, just barely catching herself before she fell out of bed. After taking a moment to shake it off, she got up and got dressed before carefully making her way downstairs, trying not to awaken her mother. As it turned out, this ended up being unnecessary, as Dana was already at the table with a mug of coffee, scrolling through something or other on her tablet.

“What’s with all the sneaking around?” Dana asked, keeping her eyes on her tablet.

“I-I wasn’t trying to sneak around, I j-just didn’t want to wake you up if you were still sleeping.” Teresa replied nervously.

“Mm.” Dana grunted. “Well, go ahead and get some breakfast in you. I want to have a little talk with you afterwards.”

“A-a talk?” Teresa gulped. “A-about what?”

“You know what.” Dana sighed, turning to look at her.

“I-I really don’t.” Teresa said. There were a number of things her mother could be talking about.

“Don’t act stupid, Teresa.” Dana tsked. "Look, I’ll get straight to the point: I want to know if you resent me as a mother."

Teresa froze for a second. To her, this was pretty obviously a trap. If she said ‘yes’, her mother would flip out on her, and if she said ‘no’, Dana would just end up feeling validated in what she did. It was a Catch-22 if she ever saw one, and the fact that her mom was trying to bait her like this was making her feel boxed-in and a bit...

Angry?

"N-no, I don't, it's just..." Teresa looked away from her, deciding to go with a vague middling answer in order to defuse the situation. "I-it's complicated."

“Complicated how?”

Crap, she messed up. Too vague. Created more inquiry. Pushed the balance of power in this conversation back towards her mother. She needed to strategize the rest of her responses and do it fast, or her mother would-

...Hang on a second, what the heck was she doing? Why was she playing along with this in the first place? She was 18 already. Why on Earth were two grown women trying to ‘outplay’ each other instead of talking like normal people?

I’m waiting.” Dana impatiently rapped her fingers on the table.

God, that tone. That patronizing, demanding tone that had always signaled to Teresa that she was in danger. It had always been something she feared, something she cowered away from, but now, after everything that had happened... it just made her mad. Enraged, really. Not for anyone else’s sake, but for her own.

It felt... liberating.

“I have problems with you, but I don’t resent you.” She made one last attempt to settle this politely.

"Teresa Challice, I know when you're lying."

She didn’t know what she was expecting.

"No, you don't!" Teresa snapped, slamming her fist down on the table. "Every time, every time I say something you don't like, you just accuse me of lying to you! I had to learn how to lie in order to keep you happy! The only lies I ever told were the ones telling you that you were a good person!"

A brief pause.

"...That sounds like resentment to me." Dana raised an eyebrow.

"It's not-" Teresa took a deep breath to try and calm down. "...Look, I don't resent you. It's hard for me to hold grudges. It's too exhausting. I'm angry with you because I finally realized how screwed up our relationship is."

She let out a deep sigh.

"The truth is, I'm scared of you. I don't trust you. I tried so hard to be the person you wanted me to be, and all you did was keep moving the goalposts." She began to choke up. "I love you because you're my mom, but... it's never felt like you loved me."

Dana stayed silent for a moment before sighing and looking down at her coffee.

“...You know, in hindsight, I’ve always treated you how my parents treated me, and looking back at them...” Dana let out a morose chuckle. “I guess I’m just kind of surprised you never tried taking a knife to my throat.”

Teresa didn’t quite know how to respond to that.

“I do love you, Teresa, but hell if I know how to express it.” Dana tsked. “Man, I really shouldn’t have had a kid.”

“Then why did you?”

“Your father was a kind, outstanding human being. Back then, I assumed he would always be around to help me.” Dana said. “In a fair world, he would have been. But as it stands, I guess I just reverted back to what I knew, and what I know... well, it’s pretty shit.”

They fell into an awkward silence.

“So... what?” Teresa broke the silence with a question. “After dad died, you just... didn’t even try to get better?”

“Wasn’t strong enough to do it on my own.” Dana said. “Your father was my rock. When he died, it felt like a chunk of me went with him. Can’t afford therapy on our health plan, so I just had to deal with it.”

“And your idea of ‘dealing with it’ was ignoring what he wanted and abusing your kid?” Teresa scowled.

“...Yeah.” Dana took another sip of coffee. “I guess so.”

“I... You...” Teresa took a deep breath and turned towards the front door. “...I need to get out of the house for a bit.”

“Not even gonna eat breakfast?” Dana asked.

“No appetite.” Teresa walked over to the door and pulled it open.

“Well, be safe out there.” Dana said.

“...As if you’d care.”

Teresa closed the door behind her as she left, leaving Dana alone with her coffee.


Anne’s morning hadn’t started off much better.

She was already in the kitchen, washing off the dishes she used for breakfast. Her mother, Mary, walked into the room with a yawn, having just gotten out of bed.

Mary Christensen.png

“You’re up early.” Mary noted as she stretched her back. “Did you get enough sleep, honey?”

Anne’s only response was a silent glance in her direction.

“Anne, is something wrong?” Mary asked concernedly.

Anne turned around to look at her.

“...When were you going to tell me?” Anne glared at her mother.

“I’m sorry, tell you what?” Mary looked a bit puzzled.

“That Messias is my father.”

Mary stared at her in silent shock as the tension in the room immediately thickened.

“...How did you find out about that?” Mary finally replied.

“He started coming after me again about a month ago, and I managed to snag this off him.” Anne pulled out the Silver Break BootLock. “Turns out it has a DNA lock on it. Guess how close your DNA has to be to activate it.”

“Wait, he what?” The confusion on Mary’s face turned to concern. “Has he-”

“Against all odds, no.” Anne pocketed the BootLock. “These days, I have some pretty reliable people on my side. I just wish I could rely on you.”

“Listen, Anne, my relationship with Joshua was... complicated.” Mary said. “I didn’t want to make you deal with any of that.”

“And yet here we are anyway.” Anne said dryly.

“That man...” Mary muttered to herself. “Your father... he’s pious and persevering, and I like that about him, but he’s always been extremely shortsighted. He never considers what effects his actions will have in the long run.”

“’Pious’?” Anne sputtered in disbelief. “He raped me!”

“But he was righteous enough to have his sins wiped clean, and that’s what’s important.” Mary replied. “We all have our vices; the most important thing is to live our lives centered around the gospel.”

Are you serious?!

“Anne, honey, I’m not saying what he did was right, and I completely understand your frustration, but you can’t let this grudge keep holding you back.” Mary put a hand on Anne’s shoulder, giving her a sympathetic look. “He did the same thing to me, and I had to learn how to forgive him. Now that you’re an adult, I think it’s time for you to do the same.”

Anne went into a stunned silence, completely baffled by what she was hearing. Before she was able to come up with a response, she heard what sounded like someone entering the house. She and her mother turned toward the kitchen doorway to find Messias casually wandering in.

“Hello, Mary.” Messias grinned. “It’s been a while.”

“Joshua?” Mary immediately moved to put herself between Anne and Messias. “The news said you were arrested yesterday. What are you doing here?”

“Well, you know me, I always have a trick or two up my sleeve.” Messias winked. “That said, I’m afraid I can’t stay for long; I’m just here to fetch Annabelle.”

“You what?” Anne hissed.

“Did you forget I know where you live?” Messias raised an eyebrow. “I’ve avoided coming here simply because it would be a bit awkward with your mother around, but I think we’re far beyond the point that it matters, don’t you think?”

“You must be out of your mind.” Anne glared. “There’s no way mom’s just going to sit back and let you take me.”

“Mary, would you mind moving, please?” Messias asked, ignoring Anne’s rebuttal.

Mary looked down at the floor, and after a few moments, moved out of the way.

“...Mom?” Anne’s voice shook.

“Thank you, dear.” Messias smirked. “You see that, Annabelle? That’s what a proper woman looks li-”

Messias was interrupted as Anne transformed into Silver Break, tackling him out of the kitchen and throwing him out of the house. He pulled out his own transformation lock and turned into Platinum Rapture, making a graceful landing a few feet away.

“You’re never going to find a good man with an attitude like that.” Platinum Rapture tsked. “I swear, you really are hopeless.”

Silver Break stayed silent, her expression hidden beneath her mask.

“No retort to that? I suppose we can count that as progress.” Platinum Rapture hmmed. “It’s too bad you don’t take more after your mother.”

Silver Break screamed with rage and rushed at him, surrounding her entire body in shattering energy. The silver flickering in the energy’s light was much more visible this time, and as Platinum Rapture prepared to dodge, he noticed something odd happening to Silver Break’s body.

He stepped out of the way as Silver Break came at him with a flurry of blows, dodging where he could and turning intangible where he couldn’t. He eventually found an opening and kicked Silver Break in the gut, knocking her back a ways. She growled and prepared to charge him again, only for her legs to buckle out from underneath her.

“What the-” Silver Break fell to her knees. “What’s going on?!”

She started looking herself over and found that holes had begun to form all across her body. Her own shattering energy was backfiring on her, proving too powerful for her current form to regulate.

“How convenient.” Platinum Rapture sneered. “All I have to do is wait for you to wither away at your own hand.”

Silver Break yelled in frustration and pushed herself to her feet, running away as fast as she was able with her decaying form. Platinum Rapture considered going after her, but decided to leave it for the moment.

“Let her stew.” He smirked. “Fear always makes the meat taste better.”


“Silver Break started decaying?

Anne had gone straight to Dr. Krauze, hoping to gain insight as to what was happening with her transformation.

“I guess it’s more accurate to say it was being shattered.” Anne elaborated. “It evolved yesterday, and it seems like its body is too weak for its power.”

“That’s definitely concerning.” Emilia hmmed, turning the Silver Break BootLock over in her hands. “The EvoLocks all come with a safety feature that reverses harmful evolutions, but BootLocks probably aren’t built with safety in mind.”

“Is there anything I can do about it?” Anne asked. “This is the only thing I have to keep myself safe.”

“Not really.” Emilia looked at the keyhole on the bottom of the lock. “I have an idea, but it might be kind of unorthodox.”

“That’s fine.” Anne said. “Whatever it takes.”

There was a moment of silence between the two.

“...Christine’s coming over soon, so this is probably the safest place for you, really.” Emilia cleared her throat awkwardly.

“...Yeah.”

“It might be a good idea to call Teresa and-”

No!” Anne blurted out. “I-I mean, no, no, I don’t want her to have to deal with this. I don’t want to keep making her put her life on the line for me.”

“You’re not ‘making’ her.” Emilia said. “It’s just something she does.”

“That’s why I don’t want to tell her.” Anne replied. “Knowing she’s like that, telling her I’m in trouble feels like I’m taking advantage of that. She’s already suffered enough because of my problems. I can’t make her suffer more.”

“I understand that, but at the risk of sounding too blunt, Messias isn’t just your problem.” Emilia pointed out. “The man’s a menace to society; I mean, he’s the one who activated Oberon OS in the first place.”

Anne paused.

“...He what?

“Oh, did CROSS not tell you?” Emilia blinked. “Yeah, when he was in the Archives with Nightmare OS, he said he was responsible for awakening the AI.”

“So everything... everything Oberon OS did was... his fault?”

“Technically speaking, yeah.” Emilia said. “I’m just hoping he doesn’t have any other omnicidal AIs laying around to activate.”

Anne stared blankly at the ground.

“...Hey, Dr. Krauze?” She muttered. “Odd question, but... do you have a gun?”

“A gun?” Emilia looked confused. “Um, no, not really; all I use for self-defense is the DataLock. Would a gun even work on Messias?”

“No, no, not for him.” Anne stood up and walked over to the wall, turning away from Emilia. “It wouldn’t be for him.”

“I... don’t really understand, then.” Emilia said. “What do you need a gun for?”

“It seems like no matter what I do, no matter what happens, he’s always just standing right there, hurting me and everyone that I love.” Anne turned back towards Emilia, revealing a broken stare. “So why keep enabling him? Why not take that golden ticket he keeps railing for, and just... get rid of it?

“Anne, I’m kind of worried about what you’re implying.” Emilia gave her a concerned look. “We can still fix this. Like I said, I can probably fix what’s going on with Silver Break-”

“It’s not just about Silver Break.” Anne looked her in the eye. “I know you can fix Silver Break. You made the Evolvyrns, I know you can fix one, but everything else? You can’t stop Messias from coming after me, or Teresa, or anyone else. You can’t ‘fix’ that’s he’s my father, you can’t ‘fix’ that my mom cares more about him than she does about me, and you can’t fix the fact that me just existing puts everyone around me in danger. I can’t stop him either, but I can make sure that he never gets what he wants.”

“I’d rethink that plan if I were you.” A new voice interjected from the foyer. “Messias would be rather pleased with himself if his efforts to break you proved to be successful.”

They turned to find Lucius standing nearby, carrying a set of papers with him.

“Wait, how did you get in here?” Emilia asked. “I actually remembered to lock my door this time!”

“Physical barriers are ineffective against me.” Lucius stated flatly, walking over to her and handing her the papers. “The lab found new information in the data you sent us.”

“I thought you guys were done with that already.” Emilia said, looking confused.

“The amount of data recovered compared to the amount of data we received ended up being far smaller than anticipated, so we’ve returned to experimenting with new ways to decode it.” Lucius tsked. “It’s an alien coding system evolved for use in living things. Even with access to alien technologies, attempting to read it with a computer system is proving... difficult.”

“So what are these?” Emilia looked at the papers.

“Fragments of his thought process during the... incident.” Lucius said. “If we can recover it in full, we’ll be able to prove premeditation and intent with absolute certainty.”

“Ooh, smart.” Emilia started reading through the papers and abruptly flinched. “You know what, I’m gonna leave this for the court to read through.” She handed the papers back. “I really didn’t need to see that today.”

“Suit yourself.” Lucius shrugged and pocketed the papers before turning to face Anne. “And as for you, I would heavily advise against self-termination for the reason previously stated.”

“I mean, i-it’s not like I want to do it, but...” Anne leaned against the wall and began to slide down it, ending up in a huddled crouching position. “I don’t see any other way out. I feel like a puppet he’s toying with, and I just... I can’t do it anymore. I can’t. I’m not even a person, I’m just a doll for my parents to use however they want. My clothes, my body, my identity, it’s all been decided for me, and if I step out of line, I’m fucked.” She looked up at him. “So tell me, Lucius. Tell me what you expect me to do instead.”

“Killing my own father worked wonders for me.” Lucius replied bluntly. “Even if it didn’t stick, it was still rather cathartic.”

“Hey, great idea, just one teensy little issue with that:” Anne’s left eye started to twitch. “The entire problem is that he never actually dies!

“That’s not entirely correct.” Lucius stated. “His mechanical bodies may be entirely reproducible, but I doubt his organic body would-”

“I DON’T CARE ABOUT THE SEMANTICS, LUCIUS!” Anne yelled, getting to her feet again. “YOU KNOW WHAT I’M TALKING ABOUT!”

“Alright, then, I’ll just get to the point:” Lucius cleared his throat. “You kill Messias himself, you kill him for good. Robotic bodies or not.”

Anne stared at him in furious disbelief for a few seconds.

YOU THINK I DON’T KNOW THAT?!” She shrieked. “BUT GUESS WHAT? YOU JUST GOT HIM SHIPPED OFF TO ONE OF THE MOST SECURE PRISON COMPOUNDS ON THE ENTIRE PLANET! WHAT AM I SUPPOSED TO DO HERE?!

“That is true, but-”

“BUT WHAT, LUCIUS?!” Anne cut him off. “HEY, HERE’S A GREAT IDEA, YOU’RE THE ONE WITH THE EVIL CRIME BOSS DAD HE’S HELPING, YOU’RE THE ONE WHO CAN TELEPORT IN AND OUT OF ANYWHERE UNNOTICED, AND OH YEAH, MINOR POINT, YOU ARE LITERALLY SATAN HIMSELF! WHY DON’T YOU KILL HIM IF YOU THINK IT’S THAT EASY, YOU ANGSTY, HYPOCRITICAL PRICK?!

“Do you seriously think I haven’t tried?!” Lucius snapped in an uncharacteristic display of emotion. “He’s a threat to my company and rescued my father! I would gladly grind him beneath my heel if I could!”

“And why can’t you?!” Anne demanded.

Because I’m the devil! Spirits are shaped by humanity’s beliefs! As long as a single person still has faith that he’s protected from my influence, I can’t touch him!” Lucius pointed an accusatory finger at her. “It’s humans like you that maintain those beliefs and give him immunity! I am not the party at fault here!”

“And what, are you trying to say I am?!

“Don’t be absurd, it’s a belief hundreds of years old.” Lucius said. “All you did was help propagate it.”

Anne stood silent for a moment before abruptly turning around and walking to the door.

“Anne, wait!” Emilia finally managed to get a word in, but it was too late, with Anne leaving the building as she was still talking. She looked over at Lucius, whose face remained expressionless. “Come on, Lucius, really? I thought you were better than that.”

“...In that case, I suppose we were both wrong.”

Lucius suddenly disappeared without another word. A few moments later, Christine walked through the door.

“I know I’m a bit early, but I really wasn’t expecting to hit as many green lights as I did.” Christine let out a sigh of relief. “By the way, I just passed Anne on the way here. Something going on?”

“Well, kind of...” Emilia chuckled nervously, aware that Christine’s reaction to this news would probably be to run off and put herself in danger again. “See, BootLocks don’t have the evolutionary safety net I put in EvoLocks, and Anne’s Silver Break recently evolved an issue where its powers are backfiring on itself.”

“Is it something you can fix?” Christine took her shoes off by the door before walking into the carpeted living room and sitting down next to Emilia.

“I think so, but I’ll have to print a new DNA Key for the fix to work.” Emilia replied as Christine gave her a quick peck on the cheek.

“Okay, so it’s just a matter of waiting for the key now?” Christine asked.

“Well, I mean...” Emilia cleared her throat. “That and one other thing...”


“I have to say, I’m impressed.”

Teresa had taken the Cross Bullet out to an overgrown abandoned power plant in order to train up NeOhm’s control over her electric abilities. After transforming into NeOhm, she got straight to work, guiding electricity on specific courses through the rusted-over metal structures.

“With what?” NeOhm asked.

“With you.” CROSS replied. “You’ve got full control of NeOhm.”

“Well, I already vented at my mom this morning, so there’s not much for her to run wild with.” NeOhm said. “As long as I don’t keep my emotions pent up beforehand, NeOhm’s fine.”

“I understand that part of it; it’s just that you’re the queen of bottling up your feelings.” CROSS said. “What happened this morning with your mom?”

“Got into an argument with her and ended up confronting her about the abuse for the first time.” NeOhm sighed. “I didn’t really mean for it to happen, I just... I got angry and it kinda came up naturally.”

“Hey, that’s improvement!” CROSS said encouragingly. “You stood up for yourself!”

“I...” NeOhm blinked underneath her visor. “...Huh. Yeah, I... I guess I did. Hang on a sec.”

NeOhm pulled the electric currents out of the metal and reabsorbed them with a momentary flash of neon electricity.

“Sorry for changing the subject, but I just had an idea.” NeOhm said. “You think if I used Lunaqua to soak these rusty generators with water I could use NeOhm again to clean them with electrolysis?”

“Nah, I think to get anywhere with it you’d have to put ‘em in a tank.” CROSS replied. “Plus we don’t have any electrolytes to mix in with the water.”

“Yeah, that’s true.” NeOhm sighed as she sank into a squatting position. “...Actually, I should ask Dr. Krauze for a water alien CrossKey. A water plus electricity alien would be awesome, but I can’t fuse the CrossTrix’s onboard transformations.” She paused. “Wait, can I?”

“Unfortunately, no.” The CrossTrix displayed a blinking crossed-out icon. “I mean, yes, in theory, the wiring is all there, but the doc couldn’t entirely figure out how to prevent the genetic data from corrupting during the process unless it was stored in separate devices.”

“So why not just store the DNA on the CrossTrix in separate chambers inside the chassis?” NeOhm questioned. “If she can fit a whole train in there, she could probably find a way to fit something like that in.”

“Uh-” The CrossTrix’s screen went blank. “...Honestly, you’d have to ask the doc about that. I really couldn’t tell you what her full thought process was.”

“Will do.” NeOhm said. “So what should we focus on next?”

“I think you’ve got NeOhm’s electricity pretty much down, so we should probably move on to your electric sense.”

“My what?” NeOhm blinked.

“Plasnights have the ability to sense and track electrical signals.” CROSS explained. “It’s not of much use to them nowadays, but they evolved in a region with thick vegetation and developed the ability in order to keep track of each other.”

“I guess that makes sense.” NeOhm nodded. “So how do I do it?”

“Close your eyes and clear your head.” CROSS said. “From what I understand, you should start to notice fuzzy ‘trails’ leading back to where they came from.”

“Got it.”

NeOhm bowed her head, closed her eyes, and focused.

A few minutes passed.

“...Getting anything?” CROSS asked.

"Well... I can tell that there are some phone signals nearby, but that's about it." NeOhm hmmed. "Can't decipher them at all, though."

"There's no way you'd be able to." CROSS said. "But how do you know that they're phone signals?"

"They trace back to little phone-shaped chunks of electricity, so it's more of an educated guess."

"Makes sense."

"Aaaaand that's about all the focusing I can do right now." NeOhm opened her eyes and flopped backwards onto the grass. "Too distracted."

"Still thinking about the conversation you had with your mom this morning?" CROSS asked.

"Nah, not really." NeOhm said. "That was pretty straightforward."

"So what's up?"

"I just... can't stop thinking about Anne, y’know?" NeOhm sighed. “Every time I close my eyes she pops back into my head.”

"Are you worried she might be in danger?"

"No... I mean, yeah, of course, but that's not what I'm thinking about specifically."

"Then what are you thinking about?"

"Her eyes... her hair... her smile..." NeOhm listed off slowly. "Just... her, you know?"

"Oh, you're down bad bad." CROSS said.

"Of course I am, she's amazing!" NeOhm threw her hands up. "Man, you don't even know half of how gushy I feel around her!"

"Does she even know?" CROSS questioned.

"Well... no, not really." NeOhm mumbled. "Look at me, I'm a disaster. The only time I feel brave enough to even talk about this stuff is when I'm NeOhm, and that's only because she literally can't feel fear!"

"You didn't seem to have any problems like this with Nova." CROSS noted.

"Nova was different; when we fused, it made it feel like we had known each other for years." NeOhm said. "This is my first time getting into a relationship the normal way, and I've got no idea what I'm doing."

"Makes sense." The CrossTrix played a thoughtful nodding animation. "Afraid I don't have much advice there, what with being an AI/former evil entity and all."

“Man, I still can’t wrap my head around all that stuff.” NeOhm tsked. “You’ve always seemed like a super simple guy; like, in a cool way, I mean.”

“Darn right in a cool way.”

Before their conversation could continue, the CrossTrix dial suddenly started ringing.

“Woah, what the heck?” NeOhm sat up and looked down at the dial. “Who’d be calling me on the CrossTrix?”

“Let’s see, caller ID says...” CROSS started. “Oh, it’s Dr. Krauze.”

“Guess that checks.” NeOhm nodded. “Um, how do I answer this thing?”

“Just tap on the dial.” CROSS replied.

“Convenient.” NeOhm said as she followed CROSS’s instructions. “Wonder what’s up?”


Anne briskly walked through the streets of Emilia’s neighborhood, not having any particular destination in mind. She was dissociating again. She couldn’t think. Everything around her was fuzzy. It felt like her body was moving on its own, with her mind too exhausted to care. It was a stupor she was all too familiar with, but unable to escape.

And it was in this state that Messias found her.

Rising up through the sidewalk a few meters behind her, he was still transformed into Platinum Rapture, and used a loud sonic blast to get her attention. She turned around, still only halfway comprehending what was going on, and grabbed the Silver Break BootLock purely on reflex.

“Hello there, child of mine.” Platinum Rapture spoke in a soft, droning voice. “Have you had time to think?”

Anne transformed into Silver Break and rushed him, only being able to get several punches in before her transformation broke down and she reverted back to human. She kept punching him, tears forming in her eyes as she mindlessly hit him over and over again. Somewhat amused by this, Platinum Rapture allowed her to continue her useless assault until she exhausted herself and fell to the ground, clenching her fists on the cement as she let out a broken scream.

“Do you see how pointless this is now, Annabelle?” Platinum Rapture kneeled down and put his hand under her chin, lifting her head up to look her in the eyes. “Just come with me. Come with me and I can make all of this just... disappear.”

This was her lowest point.

And in the moment, she felt like there was only one thing she could do.

Anne slowly nodded, resigning herself to her fate as tears flowed down her cheeks.

Underneath his mask, Platinum Rapture grinned.

He didn’t get much of a chance to revel in his moment of victory before he heard the sound of someone running towards them. He stood up and looked down the road to find a furious Christine skidding to a halt a few meters away.

“Get away from her, Messias!” Christine ordered, pulling out the SpecOps Lock.

“Oh, please.” Platinum Rapture tsked. “You’re not even worth my time.”

He grabbed Christine in a telekinetic hold and slammed her into the asphalt until he heard something crack, then casually tossed her aside. To his surprise, Christine managed to push herself back to her feet despite blood pouring out of various lacerations on her skin.

“This is just painful to watch.” Platinum Rapture sighed. “Allow me to put you out of my misery.”

He fired a concentrated beam of cosmic energy aimed directly as Christine’s heart. Just as the attack was about to hit, a long, whip-like spine with a horned head at the end wrapped around Anne and Christine and pulled them out of range.

“Well, look who decided to show up.” Platinum Rapture hmmed.

Anne and Christine looked up to find Dullacannon walking out in front of them as her head retracted onto her body. Her eyes narrowed as she silently analyzed the situation.

“Unfortunately for you, Challice, you got here just a little too late.” Platinum Rapture tsked. “Annabelle here had just agreed to come with me before this buffoon of a law enforcement officer arrived, so if you could kindly leave us to our business...”

Anne suddenly reached out and grabbed into Dullacannon’s ankle, drawing her attention.

“Teresa, I-I can’t do this anymore.” Anne spoke shakily. “I can’t. Th-there’s no way we can beat him. Please, just... just kill me. Kill me before he can take me. I-I can’t live like this anymore. Please!

Dullacannon froze.


Enlock’s transformation suddenly canceled, sending the SpecOps lock clattering to the floor. Teresa began to fall over, but was caught by Christine and held back up.

“Why did you detransform?!” Christine demanded worriedly.

“Please...” Teresa mumbled with a glassy-eyed stare. “Before he comes back...”

She weakly gestured toward Christine’s gun.

“Kill me.”

Christine froze as she heard Teresa speak, staring at her wide-eyed.

“Please...kill me...” Tears began streaming down Teresa’s face. “Kill me...”


“Oh come now, Challice, just hand her over.” Platinum Rapture’s voice dragged her back to the present. “We both know you don’t have the mettle it would take to actually kill her.”

Dullacannon ignored him and leaned down, grabbing Anne’s hand and helping her to her feet, with Christine standing up beside them shortly after.

“Listen to me: you’re not going to die here, and he’s not going to take you, alright?” Dullacannon gently told Anne. “You’re always the one trying to bring me hope; now it’s time that I do that for you.”

“And just how do you plan on doing that?” Platinum Rapture snorted derisively.

Dullacannon turned to look at him with a glare, raising her left hand to the CrossTrix dial and turning it right by one notch

“By putting you back in the dirt where you belong.”

“Alright, I’ll call that bluff.” Platinum Rapure sneered. “What exactly makes you think you can take on the very same power that was harnessed by Nightmare OS?”

“I think you’re forgetting one tiny detail about that situation, partner.” Dullacannon stepped forward, tipping her horn down with her right hand to obscure her eyes as she twisted the CrossTrix dial clockwise in a full 360 degree turn.

“Oh, really?” Platinum Rapture smirked. “And what would that be?”

Dullacannon glanced up.

“I was Nightmare OS,”

Dullacannon twisted the CrossTrix dial one final time, setting it two notches to the right and then slamming down on it with her palm. A flash of golden light ensued, revealing a new form as it faded.

Dullacannon Titania.png

“And I took its power for myself.”

“Alright, you have me at a bit of a loss; what is this, exactly?” Platinum Rapture laughed. “All I’m seeing is a fancied-up version of your base form. Am I really supposed to be intimidated by this?”

“It’s a Titania form; half fusion, half evolution.” Dullacannon Titania gestured to herself. “Created using the power Nightmare OS left behind in the CrossTrix.”

“Wait, so this doesn’t even have the powers of Nightmare OS? Only its scraps?” Platinum Rapture’s laughter increased. “I don’t know if I should be offended or amazed by the fact that you think this abortion of an ‘upgrade’ stands a chance against me.”

“Be whatever you damn well please, old man.” Dullacannon Titania tilted her horn over her eyes again. “It don’t change what color you’ll bleed.”

“Getting cocky now, are we?” Platinum Rapture’s eyes narrowed. “I’d prefer to see you sobbing and begging before I remove you from this world, but I suppose this will have to do.”

Platinum Rapture suddenly fired a massive blast of flames at Dullacannon Titania, who quickly launched her head into the air as her body ducked, both managing to dodge the brunt of the flames. Her head extended her spine down to her body, which grabbed on and took advantage of the remaining momentum from the launch to jump upwards before swinging her arms downwards, slamming her horn into Platinum Rapture’s chest. The attack caught him off-guard, knocking the wind out of him and sending him stumbling back a few feet as her spine retracted, placing her head back onto her body.

“You’ve got 113 different Evolvyrn powers and you don’t even bother setting up invincibility before attacking?” Dullacannon Titania noted flatly. “You ain’t got no leg to stand on when it comes to accusing someone of being ‘cocky’.”

“Don’t you dare mock me!” Platinum Rapture growled as he regained his breath. “I am a man already sealed as a king in heaven! Disgusting, worldly people like you have no right to belittle me!”

"...So, then... a king." Dullacannon Titania stroked her chin in thought. "Alright then, 'your Majesty', humor me for a moment. Do you know how they send off royalty at their funerals?"

Her head launched from and reattached to her neck in a motion too fast for the human eye to track, sending a burst of kinetic energy flowing through her body.

"With a 21-gun salute."

Shots rang out as the CrossTrix generated hard-light gun barrels across her body in order to help focus the energy into compressed blasts, nine from her arms, one from her chest, and ten from her legs. Platinum Rapture used enhanced speed to easily dodge and weave through the barrage, suddenly appearing behind Dullacannon Titania with his hand raised and ready to decapitate her at a moment’s notice.

“You might need to check your math.” Platinum Rapture smirked. “That was only 20 shots.”

“Yeah.” Dullacannon Titania smoothly aimed a hard-light pistol over the back of her shoulder. “I know.”

She fired, channeling her last shot into a blast of kinetic energy that drilled straight through Platinum Rapture’s skull. He dropped to the ground like a sack of limp meat.

“I figure this gives us about 30 seconds of free time before he regenerates.” Dullacannon Titania turned around and kicked his body to the side with a sigh. “Damn near immortal, the bastard.”

“Come on, come on...” Christine muttered through grit teeth as she twisted the Enlock key in a battered-looking SpecOps Lock over and over again to no result, eventually just giving up and tossing it into one of her pockets. “Damn it! That must’ve been what cracked when he was slamming me into the road!”

“I... I honestly though that sound was a bone breaking.” Anne stated shakily.

“No, most bone cracks have a deeper, more muted sound to them because they’re surrounded by flesh.” Christine said. “That was definitely the sound of toughened metal being snapped.”

“So are your bones okay, then?” Dullacannon Titania asked.

“Oh, no, my rib cage is basically calcium powder at this point.” Christine wheezed, coughing up some blood. “The adrenaline rush is the only thing keeping me going.”

“What- we need to get you to a hospital!” Dullacannon Titania said.

“If I survive long enough for us to do that, I’m all for it.”

“L-listen, Teresa, I...” Anne walked up to Dullacannon Titania, unable to look her in the eye. “What I just asked you to do... that was... that was wrong of me. To- to put that on you. I-I’m sorr-”

Anne was interrupted as Dullacannon Titania suddenly grabbed hold of her and lifted her into a comforting hug.

“I’ve been there, Anne.” She said reassuringly. “You have nothing to apologize for. The son of a bitch that did this to you, on the other hand...”

She stepped to the side, smoothly dodging a blast of freezing ice fired by Platinum Rapture.

“Let’s just say he’s going to miss that kind of cold where he’s going.”

She set Anne down and turned to face Platinum Rapture, who used enhanced speed to grab her head and crush it before she had a chance to react. The damage canceled her transformation, sending her stumbling backwards into Anne, who caught her before she fell to the ground. Platinum Rapture moved to strike again, but he was outsped by CROSS launching the Cross Bullet and steering its trajectory right towards him.

Platinum Rapture was forced back by the sudden launch of the train, giving Anne and Teresa a chance to run back across the road and regroup with Christine. After taking a moment to regain his wits, he batted the train aside, tearing a small chunk of the paneling off the side as he did so and throwing it towards the three of them, missing Anne and Christine but hitting Teresa head-on. The sharp edges of the metal cut up her face as the force of the impact knocked her to the ground, unconscious.

“Well, the police chief can’t fight, and the meddling queer is out of commission.” Platinum Rapture gloated. “I assume your answer from before still stands?”

“I...” Anne’s pupils shrank as she instinctively started moving backwards. “I-I...”

Christine tried to step between them, but only made it a couple of steps before collapsing on the side of the road as she started to vomit blood.

Platinum Rapture started to move in again, but paused. it sounded as if another set of footsteps were approaching them, but who on earth would be reckless enough to-

“Anne, take this!” Emilia yelled from a good few meters down the road, tossing a small metal object in her direction as she ran towards them.

Anne grabbed the object out of the air as it approached. She paused to look at it, finding that the object was a stylized silver DNA key.

“Use it in the BootLock!” Emilia followed up. “When you turn the key, grab the sword!”

“The sword?” Anne paused before shaking her head and pulling up the Silver Break BootLock. “Whatever, no time to think about it.”

She plunged the silver-coated DNA key into the keyhole at the bottom of the BootLock, activating a dazzling purple transformation field around her that sparkled with silver stars. Platinum Rapture, seeing her about to transform, generated several large boulders and threw them at her with the intent of buckling the transformation field, only for them to break apart into dust as soon as they touched it.

“It’s a Silver Break transformation field, alright.” Anne remarked as she tightened her grip on the lock. “Now or never.”

She turned the DNA key, which automatically released the lock’s loop. Expecting an immediate transformation, she was caught off-guard as a silver sword generated in front of her instead, dropping from the air and burying its tip in the ground, leaving it standing upright. She turned to give Emilia an incredulous look, to which Emilia simply responded by mimicking a pulling motion.

“I don’t think she knows how that looks, but I get the idea.” Anne turned her attention back to the sword. “I guess I’ll just have to trust that she knows what she’s doing.”

She grabbed onto the sword’s handle with both hands and heaved it out of the ground, turning the blade upwards towards the sky. Her body was suddenly consumed in a purple light, transforming her into Silver Break, upon which silver armor began generating across her body starting from the hands she held the sword with.

A rush of adrenaline left Anne experiencing the transformation in slow motion, but in reality, the entire process from picking up the sword to being fully transformed took under a second to complete. The transformation field shattered around her, creating a temporary cloud of sparkling lights that illuminated her new hybridized form.

Silver Breaking Point Card.png

“The sword thing seemed unnecessary, but the end result feels pretty nice.” Silver Breaking Point experimentally rolled her shoulders and clenched her fingers in and out. “What am I, exactly?”

“You’re a fusion of your evolved Silver Break and an Argentum!” Emilia proclaimed proudly. “Argentum can draw objects using silver and have a natural armored shell made of the stuff!”

“And how exactly is that a ‘fix’ for Silver Break?” Silver Breaking Point asked confusedly.

“Silver is the one thing Silver Break’s powers can’t actually break.” Emilia replied. “It’s the most conductive metal known to science, meaning it just carries the shattering field instead of crumbling from it.”

“Hang on a second, did you name the Teilen Evolvyrn ‘Silver Break’ because it can’t break silver?!” Silver Breaking Point asked incredulously.

“Well, it’s not like I named it after its color scheme; it’s mostly black, not silver.” Emilia shrugged. “I thought it’d be funny.”

“As much as this conversation about menial trivia absolutely enthralls me, I would appreciate it if you remembered what you’re dealing with here and reacted appropriately.” Platinum Rapture scowled.

“Sorry, but I’ve had more than enough of you dictating my actions.” Silver Breaking Point turned to him with an equally venomous expression underneath her mask. “This is my body. My life. I might not get the support I need from my parents, but I’ve been able to get it from people who genuinely care about me. People I choose to be around. People I choose to love. You won’t be making decisions for me...” She pointed her sword at him. “Ever again!

“We’ll see about that.” Platinum Rapture’s eyes narrowed.

He hurled a massive bolt of lightning at Silver Breaking Point, only for her to emerge from the attack completely unharmed.

“What?!” Platinum Rapture snapped. “Silver is supposed to be conductive, is it not?!”

“Yeah, that’s why the Argentum evolved a silver shell in the first place; their planet is constantly bombarded by lightning storms.” Emilia piped in. “Their conductivity basically makes them walking lightning rods, with their armor routing the electricity away from the internal organism and into the ground. You’re an engineer for God’s sake, not knowing how this works is just embarrassing.”

“Do not mock me, and do not take the Lord’s name in vain!” Platinum Rapture hissed, turning his attention to Emilia. “Your continued existence has caused nothing but trouble for me, you lowlife immigrant quack!”

“That’s how I know I’m doing good.” Emilia grinned.

“I should have done this a long time ago.” Platinum Rapture hissed, firing a massive beam of thermal energy at her, only visible through the distortion it made in the air..

Silver Breaking Point reacted immediately, drawing upon some sort of alien primordial instinct and using her sword to sketch out a massive shield made of silver as she ran in front of Emilia, placing her arm through a pair of grip loops on its back and skidding to a halt just in time to deflect the blast.

“Alright, what is this?!” Platinum Rapture yelled. “Silver is supposed to melt down at those temperatures! Even with the shield, she should have melted, and you should have burned to death from the residual heat!

“Impressive, right?” Emilia stepped away from Silver Breaking Point, whose body had absorbed the brunt of the heat and was currently melting the asphalt underneath her. “See, Argentum silver is actually incredibly durable until it leaves their touch. Having an armor made of silver with its regular properties would be extremely impractical on multiple levels.”

“How do you find these alien freaks of nature?!” Platinum Rapture hissed.

“Wow, it’s almost like I’m an alien expert or something.” Emilia pointed out as she made her way over to Christine and healed her using the DataLock.

“Your move, Messias.” Silver Breaking Point dissolved her shield and glared up at him. “I’m going to survive this. I’m going to live. And there’s nothing you can do about that.”

“Your cockiness isn’t going to get you anywhere!” Platinum Rapture snapped.

He summoned another series of massive rocks, hurling them at Silver Breaking Point and the rest of the group. Thinking quickly, she channeled her shattering energy into her sword and used her power over silver to extend the blade, cutting apart every rock in one swift motion. The shattering energy of the sword traveled into the rocks, breaking them into dust once again.

“You tried that already.” Silver Breaking Point pointed out. “It’s not just suddenly gonna work the second time.”

Platinum Rapture looked like he was about to explode with rage, but at the last second, he suddenly took a deep breath and floated back to the ground.

“...You know what, you’re right.” He said. “I’ve allowed my own anger to overtake my mind. Repeating failed blunt-force tactics in a blind rage. God would be ashamed.”

He shook his head.

“Here I am trying to lecture you about sin when I myself have fallen to it.” He sighed. “All of my sins are forgiven by the Lord in his endless mercy, but that is no excuse to act so recklessly. I must honor the Lord by carrying out his will not in anger, but in my love for him. As such...”

He suddenly teleported in front of Silver Breaking Point and grabbed her by the throat, calmly lifting her into the air as his arm suddenly began absorbing her armor.

“I must perform my duty with calm precision.” He finished as spiked tendrils made of the absorbed silver sprouted from his back.

“How’s this for precision?!” A voice suddenly shouted.

NeOhm rushed in and hit Platinum Rapture with a perfectly-executed kick to his throat. Completely unphased by the assault, he simply took a hold of NeOhm’s leg and used it to toss her away like a rag doll, sending her flying for a good few meters before she made impact with the ground.

“Really?” Platinum Rapture snorted. “You transformed into an electric alien and tried to use a physical attack? I can’t decide whether that’s funny or sad.”

“I got a better word for it:” NeOhm grunted as she pushed herself off the ground. “Distracting.”

“What-”

Before he could even finish the sentence, he suddenly found himself with a massive silver blade splitting his head in two. Silver Breaking Point landed on the ground with a large thud as he dropped her and began stumbling away to regenerate.

“How’d you know I was going to do that?” Silver Breaking Point asked, walking over to NeOhm.

“I didn’t.” NeOhm grinned underneath her visor. “I just figured I could trust you.”

“Well, good call.” Silver Breaking Point grinned equally widely underneath her own mask.

“So, uh, your armor...” NeOhm pointed at the various chunks missing from it thanks to Platinum Rapture’s absorption. “Do you need to retransform, or...?”

“Too risky right now.” Silver Breaking Point hmmed. “But I do have an idea.”

She pulled up her sword and drew a massive pair of silver scissors in the air, using them to snip off Platinum Rapture’s silver tendrils while he was still distracted. This allowed the silver to return to her body, restoring her armored shell entirely.

“Neat trick.” NeOhm whistled.

“But that’s all you have, isn’t it?” Platinum Rapture interjected with a hiss, finally recovering from his head injury. “Tricks. Cheap gimmicks with no substance, used only to delay the inevitable. Don’t you feel even the slightest bit ashamed?”

“Dude, you’re a kiddy diddler.” NeOhm crossed her arms with a scowl. “Don’t you even start with that ‘shame’ crap. A psychopath like you doesn’t deserve any respect in combat, are we clear?”

Platinum Rapture’s eyes narrowed.

Crystal.”

He suddenly fired a stream of liquid crystals at them, fully encasing them before they could react. Silver Breaking Point closed her eyes and focused, allowing her shattering energy to flow through her whole body and into the armor. The technique worked, shattering away the crystal around her and preventing her from being encased as Platinum Rapture tried trapping her again.

“I’ve noticed something interesting about your tactics.” Silver Breaking Point spoke as she carefully shattered the crystal surrounding NeOhm. “You don’t really combine your powers, you just use one or two baseline abilities at the same time. It’s honestly kind of sad to watch.”

“Excuse me?” Platinum Rapture growled.

“You’re a creepy old man who thinks like a creepy old man.” Silver Breaking Point continued, carving off the last of the crystal and helping NeOhm out of her crystalline shell. “You’re stubborn and you hate change. How is someone like that supposed to be able to wield an entire 113 abilities wisely?”

“In case you’ve somehow already forgotten, I easily overwhelmed even your evolved Silver Break.” Platinum Rapture glared. “I may still be adjusting to my powers, but you’re deluded if you think you can take me alone.”

“Yeah, probably.” Silver Breaking Point took NeOhm’s hand. “But unfortunately for you, I’m not alone.”

“Has anyone ever told you you’re really attractive when you’re confident?” NeOhm leaned over on her shoulder.

“I-I, um, well, uh...” Silver Breaking Point stammered, more than a bit flustered. “N-no, not exactly.”

“Then you’ve been hanging with the wrong crowd.” NeOhm purred, pausing after unintentionally making an odd sound in her throat similar to the electric hum of an old tube light. “...Wow, okay, didn’t know I could do that. Made my throat feel like static. Weird.”

“Yeah, that’s an interesting feature of the Plasnight voice box.” CROSS explained. “It happens when... well, I’ll explain it to you when you’re older.”

“But I’m 18.”

Older.”

“You truly are a degenerate, Challice.” Platinum Rapture grimaced. “Not only have you chosen a homosexual lifestyle, you praise the exact rebellious nature that has ruined Annabelle in the first place.”

“Ruined her? Please.” NeOhm scoffed. “Anne’s grit is what allowed her to examine herself and improve as a person. It didn’t ‘ruin’ her, it made her stronger.”

She turned her attention back to Silver Breaking Point.

“And it’s part of why I fell in love with you.”

“W-wow, it’s, uh, k-kinda unexpected to hear you express yourself like this.” Silver Breaking Point became even more flustered.

“Oh, yeah, I’m probably gonna be mortified when I turn back to human.” NeOhm shrugged. “Might as well get it all out while I can, y’know?”

Disgusting.” Platinum Rapture spat. “This is exactly why the two of you will never reach the kingdom of heaven.”

“Well, as long as we’re going to hell, we might as well swing like the devil.” NeOhm twirled around and offered Silver Breaking Point her hand. “May I have this dance?”

Silver Breaking Point grinned underneath her mask.

“You may.”

She took NeOhm’s hand, allowing NeOhm to wrap an arm around her waist and lead her in a flamboyant waltz.

“What are you two doing?!” Platinum Rapture demanded incredulously. “Are you trying to make a mockery of me?!”

“Of course we’re not ‘trying’,” NeOhm replied.

“We’re succeeding.” Silver Breaking Point finished as NeOhm spun her in a delicate twirl.

Platinum Rapture growled and started throwing everything he had at them; ice, steam, water, heat, earth, fire, thunder, wind, vines, mana, diabolos, anything and everything he could think of in the moment, and yet all his attacks were either blocked by an elegant swing of Silver Breaking Point’s sword or dodged by a flawless bow from NeOhm. All the while, the two of them continued dancing, with Silver Breaking Point using her sword to draw along the ground wherever they moved. This created a beautiful silver pattern that traced their steps as they danced.

Enough of this foolishness!” Platinum Rapture snapped, planting his fingers firmly inside the silver lining the asphalt. “Your own mockery will be your downfall!”

Platinum Rapture began pumping Detonation’s explosive poison into the silver on the ground, carving hollow tunnels through it that quickly began approaching the two dancers.

“What do you say, my knight in shining armor?” NeOhm asked as she dipped Silver Breaking Point into her arms. “Time for the grand finale?”

“The grandest.”

The two of them swapped positions, followed by Silver Breaking Point lifting NeOhm up into a twirl. NeOhm twisted the CrossTrix dial in several graceful motions as she turned, and as she finished her twirl with a curtsy, she pressed down on it, creating for the first time NeOhm’s Titania form.

NeOhm Titania.png

“Your little gimmicks aren’t going to make you venom-proof!” Platinum Rapture laughed.

“Neither will your overconfidence insulate you.” NeOhm Titania tsked.

“What is that supposed to mean?” Platinum Rapture scowled.

NeOhm Titania and Silver Breaking Point ended their dance facing each other, settling for laying their foreheads together as a kiss would’ve proven rather difficult at the moment.

“Would it be cliche to say this was electrifying?” NeOhm Titania asked softly as the two of them embraced.

“Probably.” Silver Breaking Point chuckled. “But I wouldn’t mind one bit.”

Right as the explosive venom reached the hilt of Silver Breaking Point’s sword, NeOhm Titania generated a massive burst of electricity, sending crackling bolts of lightning coursing through her partner’s armor and into the sword, which was still connected to the silver pattern on the ground that Platinum Rapture was currently holding with an iron grip.

What happened next was predictable.

Platinum Rapture’s entire body convulsed as the sheer force of the shock sent him flying backwards across the street, only stopping as he crashed into a brick fence in front of a house.

“And while he’s still feeling shocked...” NeOhm Titania muttered.

“Come on, really?” Silver Breaking Point laughed and poked NeOhm’s cheek playfully.

NeOhm Titania closed her eyes and focused, trying to use her electric sense to track down a certain signal. With the enhancements to said sense from her Titania form, she quickly managed to scope out the electronic trail she was looking for.

“Calm and precise, calm and precise...” Platinum Rapture muttered to himself as he climbed to his feet. “I must calmly and precisely TEAR YOU TWO LIMB FROM LIMB!

As he began approaching, NeOhm Titania tracked down the electronic signal to its original source, and after double-checking to confirm it, she used her powers to remotely overload the system, exploding half the circuitry in a rainbow of electricity colors as she did so. As the system went down, Platinum Rapture went down with it, dropping to the ground like a limp sack of potatoes.

“Uh...” Silver Breaking Point blinked. “What just happened?”

“I used NeOhm’s abilities to track down the neural relay Messias has been using to control his mechanical bodies.” NeOhm Titania explained.

“And...?”

“I broke it.”

“Wait, so does that mean-” Silver Breaking Point’s heart jumped. “We don’t have to worry about Messias anymore?”

“Well, until he gets a shock-proof relay, at least.” NeOhm Titania shrugged. “So yeah, for the foreseeable future.”

“Oh...oh my God...” Silver Breaking Point’s embrace tightened as she lowered her head onto NeOhm Titania’s shoulder. “Thank you...thank you so much.”

Before NeOhm Titania could respond, they heard a shuffling noise coming from nearby. They let go of each other and turned around to find a tall, green-armored alien with a single red eye examining Platinum Rapture’s body.

Endfuse Card.png

“Going to all the trouble of setting up a neural relay and not even bothering to install an anti-electrack diode?” Endfuse scoffed. “If this is humanity’s best and brightest, it’s no wonder the species is such an evolutionary dead-end.”

“What is that?” NeOhm Titania’s eyes narrowed underneath her visor. “An Evolvyrn?”

“It’s Endfuse, the Nucleide Evolvyrn.” Emilia explained. “It can fuse itself into solid matter and emerge from any part of its surface area.”

“That... doesn’t sound like an offensive power set.” Silver Breaking Point said.

“It’s not supposed to be.” Emilia folded her arms and shrugged. “It’s meant for terrain navigation.”

“Ah, Dr. Krauze, I presume.” Endfuse turned its attention towards her. “So you’re the one I have to thank for inventing a matrix system so basic even a child could exploit it.”

“...Not sure how I should feel about that statement.” Emilia tilted her head.

“It’s a compliment; being able to simplify a concept into an easily-understood yet workable state requires a very thorough understanding of the field.” Endfuse tsked as if it should have been obvious. “If more people on this world were like you, my neural battery project may have turned out to be a success. Assuming that irritating child didn’t get in the way again...”

“What?”

“Oh, I’m just rambling to myself at this point.” Endfuse sighed. “Well, in any case, I have work to do.”

A hard-light projection suddenly appeared from Endfuse’s eye, shaping itself into a simple entry form and a keyboard filled with alien lettering. Endfuse typed in a series of letters and numbers resembling a digital key of sorts and pressed a small arrow icon next to the entry field. There was a flash of red light as it suddenly transformed into a human-sized mechanical alien clad in an asymmetrical red chassis topped with matte-silver pipes running across its chest. The outline of two narrow eyes could be seen underneath a whitened visor textured like a headlight.

Terminal Card.png

“Hang on, since when can a BootLock swap out Evolvyrns on the fly?” Christine looked over at Emilia, who simply shrugged in response.

“A BootLock can do no such thing.” Terminal snorted. “They’re pathetically basic pieces of technology made as cheaply as possible for the sake of mass-production.”

“Then what the hell are you using?” Christine demanded.

“My own creation.” Terminal spoke haughtily. “Almost a decade ago, I tried to steal an Omnitrix from someone else, and it went... less than spectacularly, but, thanks to the good doctor’s transformation lock technology, creating an Omnitrix of my own in the modern day was quite easy. Like I said, even a child could exploit it.”

“Not a fan of where this is going.” Silver Breaking Point muttered.

“My creation hosts a playlist of ten Evolvyrn DNA samples, all accessed via individual key strings, making it near-impossible for a species as dimwitted as humans to use.” Terminal gloated. “An Omnitrix system only for aliens... my XenoTrix.”

“Kind of a blunt name, isn’t it?” Emilia said.

“This coming from the individual that made an Omnitrix themed around the cross symbol and dubbed it the ‘CrossTrix’.” Terminal snorted.

“Touche.”

“Now, if you don’t mind, I’ll be taking this omnipotent rag doll back where it belongs.” Terminal hoisted Platinum Rapture’s limp body over its shoulder.

“Don’t even think about it, that man is under arrest!” Christine snapped. “...Again!”

“Spare me.” Terminal tsked. “I’m aware that you’re the chief field officer of the Global Police, but by that same token, I’m also aware you’re currently on suspension. You have no authority here.”

With that, Terminal sped off, taking Platinum Rapture with him.

“Who was that guy?” NeOhm Titania tilted her head questioningly.

“Probably one of the Triumvirate’s engineering officers.” Christine said as a dark look fell over her face. “If they have access to Omnitrix technology now, we could be looking at a dangerous situation in the near future.”

“It sounds like he has a massive superiority complex about it, so I don’t know how likely he is to share.” Silver Breaking Point said before reverting to Anne.

“Either way, it’s something I need to report to HQ.” Christine sighed. “Just a couple days left on my suspension.”

“Oh.” Emilia blinked. “I... completely forgot about that, to be honest.”

“Hey, um, Dr. Krauze?” Anne walked over to her. “Thanks for... well, everything, I guess. I’m sorry about the breakdown I had with you earlier, I just-”

“Hey, there’s nothing to apologize for; to be honest, you’ve been in that kind of high-stress situation so long that I’m kind of impressed you managed to keep it together for as long as you did.” Emilia gave her a reassuring smile. “I’m just happy I was able to help. Now, as for you...” She turned her attention to Christine and looped an arm around her closest elbow. “If we’ve only got 48 hours left, you’re damn sure I’m gonna be making the most of it.”

“Well, consider me intrigued.” Christine shot her a sly grin.

Emilia started walking back in the direction of her house with Christine in tow, creating a brief silence as the remaining three watched them go.

“...Hey, Teresa, I might end up needing to bunk with you for the next couple days.” CROSS spoke up.

“Probably a good idea.” Anne commented.

“Wait, why-” NeOhm Titania paused for a second as it suddenly clicked. “Oh, right, okay.”

There were another few moments of silence between them.

“Hey, do you need a ride home?” NeOhm Titania asked.

“With Messias gone for now, I don’t necessarily need one, but hey, if it gives me a chance to spend more time with you...”

“Well, if that’s the case, maybe I could walk you home instead?” NeOhm Titania suggested.

“...I think I’d like that.” Anne smiled.

“Oh my God your smile is the cutest thing ever!” NeOhm Titania exclaimed before catching herself. “Wait, sorry, is being all gushy right now weird? Seriously, I can’t actually tell as NeOhm.”

“I have no idea.” Anne chuckled, blushing a bit. “All I can tell you is that hearing this stuff from you makes me feel really happy, to be honest.”

“In that case, before I detransform and die from embarrassment, there’s one more thing I want to tell you.” NeOhm Titania said.

“What?”

“I wish I had enough confidence to say this to you as a human, but...” NeOhm Titania looked her in the eyes. “You are the light of my life, and the most incredible person I know. I want you to know every time you wake up that you are the most beautiful thing in my world. I know that’s probably the cheesiest thing I could possibly say, but... it’s the best way I can describe how I feel. I love you so much, Anne.”

With that, she tapped on the CrossTrix dial, reverting back to human. Her face immediately turned beet-red, and she ended up shyly staring at the ground.

“S-so, um, y-yeah.” Teresa gulped. “Th-that’s... what I w-wanted to s-say.”

Anne stared at her in silent shock for a moment before suddenly embracing Teresa and pressing her lips against hers. Teresa’s eyes widened in surprise before slowly closing as she leaned into the kiss, returning Anne’s embrace.

Just for this one moment, the two of them finally felt at peace.


“You’re home late.” Dana commented from the kitchen table as Teresa walked in, barely taking a moment to glance up from her tablet. “Figured you’d be more tired out after that kind of fight.”

“After what kind of-” Teresa shook her head. “W-wait, you were following me?”

“Well, when it turns out a news story about your daughter getting kidnapped and tortured by a war criminal is actually legit, you tend to get a bit paranoid.” Dana replied.

“What, were you jealous you didn’t get to do it?” Teresa muttered.

“Hilarious.” Dana gave her a flat look. “Anyways, after seeing you in action, I figure I don’t have to worry about that at this point. You could probably wipe this city off the map if you wanted to.”

“I... kind of doubt that.” Teresa turned to head upstairs.

“Oh, one more thing.” Dana went back to scrolling on her tablet. “The idea of you dating women still makes me uncomfortable, but as far as that whole thing goes... it seems like you’ve found a good one.”

Teresa paused and silently glanced back at her mom. After a few moments, she turned back around and made her way up the stairs.


"Holy shit, that was fast." Sephtis whistled. "Guess that's what happens when you put someone competent on the job."

Terminal had just walked into his office and unceremoniously dumped Platinum Rapture’s body onto his desk, knocking over several stacks of papers.

"Ask me to perform such menial labor again and I will happily disconnect your neural relay in much the same manner as the CrossTrix user did with Messias." Terminal hissed.

"Oh, that Challice kid did this?"

"'Challice'?"

"Yeah, Teresa Challice, she's the one using the CrossTrix.” Sephtis nodded. “Word on the street is she goes by 'Tech'."

Terminal froze.

"...'Tech'?" Its eye began to twitch.

"Yep. Surveillance team says she's not the only one, either." Sephtis replied.

"There are more?!"

"Yeah, like, three or four." Sephtis shrugged. "Surveillance has a hard time confirming that last number."

Terminal slammed its fist into the wall, creating a crack in the concrete.

"The hell was that about?!" Sephtis demanded. "I just got that concrete!'

"I'm sorry, you'll have to excuse me." Terminal replied with barely-concealed rage. "I'm just a little bit absolutely livid at the moment."

"Look, you're not gonna have to worry about Challice, okay?" Sephtis laughed. "Messias used Platinum Rapture for one last experiment before he left. Something along the lines of what we did with you."

"And who, pray tell, was the subject?" Terminal crossed his arms skeptically.

Before Sephtis could reply, there was a loud thud from a back room followed by muffled cursing.

"How about I just introduce you?"

The two of them headed towards the back room in question, opening the door to find a black-haired man dressed in equally black clothing rubbing a bump on his head, presumably obtained from the fall he took as his body had apparently been stored on the top shelf of a closet.

"Well, well, well, look who finally woke up." Sephtis grinned. "It's been a while, hasn't it?"

"Who is this?" Terminal asked impatiently.

The black-haired man looked between the two of them with a baffled expression.

"Okay, seriously," Malincious Crow started. "What the FUCK is going on?!"

Major Events

  • Silver Breaking Point debuts.
  • Messias loses control over his remote bodies.
  • Malincious Crow once again cannot stay dead.

Characters

Protagonists

Neutral

  • Unnamed XenoTrix User

Antagonists

Aliens Used

By Teresa

By Anne

By Messias

By Unnamed XenoTrix User

Trivia

  • The opening scene of this episode was originally written as an ending scene for the previous episode, but was moved to keep the pacing on-track.

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