|WARNING: PROFANITY FOLLOWS|
|The following content contains profanity that may not be suitable for readers of all ages. Please proceed with caution.|
|Season 2, Episode 2|
|Namesake||For Whom the Bell Tolls by John Donne|
Whom the Bell Tolls: Part 2
Whom the Bell Tolls: Part 1 is the fourteenth episode of Tech 10: Star Spirit, and the second episode of the second season.
[Open to a nighttime scene taking place on the outskirts of a small town in the forest. A man is running as fast as he can from an unseen force, his panicked breathing indicating that this is a life-or-death situation. After a few moments, the man trips on rock sticking out of the dirt, falling to the ground.]
[Panicked Man]: “No...no, no, no, no!”
Before he could get up, what appeared to be a dark phantom of some kind reached him, standing over him with an ominous air around it. He tried as hard as could to avoid looking at it, but was eventually overcome by an unnaturally strong urge to see what had been chasing him all this way. He slowly turned his head towards the creature, and as soon as his eyes became visible to it, it lunged at him faster than than the eye could see.
He didn’t even have time to scream.
[Cut to the inside of a warehouse in the main city’s industrial district. Almost every member of the Zodiac Organization is gathered there, including two not previously introduced. Orion is pacing in front of the group, clearly waiting for something. After a few moments, Ophiuchus rushes into the room, holding a small stack of papers.]
[Ophiuchus]: “Apologies for the wait, sir, but the printer was malfunctioning again.”
[Orion]: “Understandable. Please proceed with the report.”
[Ophiuchus]: “Well, most of it is taxes and bills, but, uh, there is one thing in particular that may prove to be a bit of an...obstacle to our plans.”
[Orion]: “If you could get to point, please.”
[Ophiuchus]: “Right, uh, sorry, the thing is, we’ve been receiving reports from our more underground workers that the local Plumbers have formed a temporary, uh, Plumber Team, of sorts.”
[Orion]: “The Omnitrix wielder and the nanobot user, I know.”
[Ophiuchus]: “Well, uh, not exactly. A full-fledged team. It, uh, appears to consist of the aforementioned nanobot user, a man in a black cloak with unknown abilities, a highly-experienced Grikonian mercenary, a Human/Feuer hybrid, and the semi-celebrity F3."
[Orion]: “...I see.”
Orion’s eyes narrowed behind his mask, creating an atmosphere of intimidating coldness. There was an awkward silence for a few moments, as the present operatives breathlessly waited for his next words.
[Orion]: “...If this is how it’s going to be, then fine, we’ll play their game. Ophiuchus, call in our last two team members.”
Ophiuchus flinched in surprise at this order, giving Orion a wide-eyed stare.
[Ophiuchus]: “B-but sir, didn’t you want them as far away from our vital operations as possible?”
[Orion]: “Yes, but now things have changed. We’re entering the endgame soon, and I will use whatever resources I find necessary to achieve our goal.”
[Ophiuchus]: “I...I understand, sir. I’ll contact them right away.”
Ophiuchus left the room, scuttling past the other operatives as quickly as he could.
[Orion]: “That is all for now. The rest of you are free to go.”
The rest of the operatives dispersed, save for Scorpio, who stood in the center of the room with his arms folded, and Aquarius, who was waiting for him near the door.
[Orion]: “Is there something you need to discuss, Scorpio?”
[Scorpio]: “Don’t play dumb. You know exactly what issues I have with this.”
[Orion]: “I suspect I do, but please, elaborate.”
[Scorpio]: “You’re calling two of the most uncontrollable, volatile people on Earth into a heavily-populated area because you feel a bit threatened? I’m only here because you promised money with no murder-themed complications, and then you come in with this bullcrap plan? If you seriously think this is a good idea, you’re not just a coward, you’re dumb as hell!”
[Orion]: “If you’re quite done with your insipid argument, I would just like to point out that you’re free to leave the organization at any time if you disagree with my policies. Of course, I doubt that you’d-”
[Scorpio]: “Alright, I’m leaving.”
Scorpio turned and began walking towards the warehouse door.
[Orion]: “Excuse me?”
[Scorpio]: (Ignoring Orion) “See ya, Aquarius. I’m done with this bull.”
As Scorpio passed by Aquarius, she grabbed onto his shoulder, causing him to pause and turn to look at her.
[Aquarius]: “Hold on a second. You’re actually leaving?”
[Scorpio]: (Rolls his eyes) “The hell do you think? I’ve put up with way too much crap from this stupid organization already.”
[Aquarius]: “...I see.”
Scorpio turned back to the door and left the building, slamming said door behind him. There were a few moments of awkward silence.
[Orion]: “I suppose we’ll have to find you a new partner, then.”
[Cut to Aeron emerging from a portal into what appears to be a small Germanic town in the middle of a forest. Clockwork swiftly follows, and closes the portal behind them. The two are soaking wet, with Aeron’s clothing being completely bogged down with water.]
[Aeron]: (Angrily) “Okay, you wanna tell me why you thought transporting us to a timeline where everything is flooded was a good idea?”
[Clockwork]: “It was hilarious.”
Aeron gave him a harsh glare.
[Clockwork]: “Well, for me, at any rate.”
[Aeron]: “Oh, for the love of...look, just tell me where we are now.”
[Clockwork]: “I think this is Dimension...I don’t know, 35? We’re on one of the timelines branching out from it.”
[Aeron]: (Raises eyebrow) “I thought the different numbered Dimensions were the branching timelines.”
[Clockwork]: “Pfft, you kidding? That would be even harder to keep track of. Each Dimension assigned a whole number is just a primary branch of the original timeline. Each branching timeline has its own set of branching timelines that branch out from them, with timelines that branch out from those timelines, and so on and so forth.”
[Aeron]: “I’m gonna pretend I care about what you just said, and specify my question: where on Earth are we?”
[Clockwork]: “Germany, I think. Look like we’re somewhere in the Black Forest.”
[Aeron]: “Well, that’s just great. I can’t speak German!”
[Clockwork]: “Didn’t you replace Roundabout’s DNA Card with a Universal Translator module?”
[Aeron]: “Oh, right. Never figured out how that stupid alien was supposed to work, anyways.”
[Clockwork]: (Rolls eyes) “Of course you didn’t.”
[Aeron]: “Shut it. Let’s just try and situate ourselves.”
[Clockwork]: (Gestures behind Aeron) “Maybe that bell tower would be a good place to start.”
Aeron turned around to see a large crowd of people gathered around a large bell tower in the distance. Many of them were carrying flowers or ribbons of some kind. It appeared as if they were patiently waiting to ascend the stairs inside the tower to the bell.
[Aeron]: “What the hell’s going on over there?”
[Clockwork]: “Some kind of ceremony, if I had to guess. Are we going to check it out?”
[Aeron]: “Once everyone clears out. I’m not a big fan of crowds unless I’m mowing them down with a grenade launcher.”
[Clockwork]: “That was an odd day.”
[Aeron] “That was a god damn awesome day and you know it.”
Aeron turned to walk towards the forest, but froze in place upon seeing what had been to their right throughout their entire conversation.
[Aeron]: “Uh, Clockwork? Did I kill someone here already without remembering it?”
[Clockwork]: “What? No. Why would you-”
Clockwork turned to see where Aeron was looking, and paused mid-sentence. A man’s dead body laid near the edge of the forest, and it appeared as if his eyes had been gouged out.
[Clockwork]: “That is...somewhat unsettling.”
[Aeron]: “Oh, don’t be such a baby. I just wanna know if someone’s trying to stake a claim on my turf.”
[Clockwork]: “We just got here. Wouldn’t it be the other way around?”
[Aeron]: “Nobody asked you.”
[Clockwork]: (Sighs) “Well, what are you going to do about this?”
[Aeron]: “I think you mean what are you going to do about this.”
[Clockwork]: “Excuse me?”
[Aeron]: (Smirks) “I’ve got an idea.”
[Cut to the inside of Plumber Base UT1, where Alpha and Xr. Nullamor are standing at the main computer console, with Theo waiting nearby impatiently.]
[Theo]: “About how long do you think this’ll take?”
[Xr. Nullamor]: “Not sure, but it would probably be going faster if someone’s computer systems didn’t have completely idiotic security standards!”
[Alpha]: “I’m not the one who designed this operating system! If it were up to me, we’d scrap the whole thing and start over from scratch!”
Alpha pressed a few keys on the console, only to be met by what had to have been the twentieth error message this morning.
[Alpha]: (Yelling at the computer) “Stop locking me out because I need Administrator access! I AM THE ADMINISTRATOR! I AM USING THE ADMINISTRATOR ACCOUNT! I OWN YOU! JUST WORK ALREADY!”
[Theo]: (To Nullamor) “Holy crap. I don’t think I’ve ever seen Alpha this pissed.”
[Xr. Nullamor]: (Shaking his head) “The year 2040, and Earth still doesn’t have a halfway decent operating system.”
[Theo]: “I thought the Plumber’s OS was created on a different planet.”
[Xr. Nullamor]: “Yes, it was. Doesn’t change the fact that it’s on Earth now and it still sucks.”
Alpha suddenly kicked the computer console out of frustration. As soon as she did so, the error message disappeared.
[Xr. Nullamor]: “See? Sometimes all you need is a little percussive maintenance.”
[Alpha]: (Sighs) “Alright, with that fixed, the install should only take a few moments here.”
[Xr. Nullamor]: (Turns to Theo) “Oh, don’t forget to turn on the Star Driver Gauntlet’s Universal Translator. That way you won’t have to worry about understanding anyone you meet in other timelines.”
[Theo]: (Rolls his eyes) “Don’t worry about it, I’ll remember.”
After a few moments, the Star Driver Gauntlet’s touchscreen blinked at let out a small beeping sound.
[Xr. Nullamor]: “Sounds like the install went alright. The Star Driver Gauntlet is now connected to the base’s computer system, so we’ll be able to stream data from the tracker to its compass system, as well as contact each you whenever necessary.”
[Theo]: “Alright, so that means I’m good to go?”
[Alpha]: “Correct. Now we simply need to send you to the timeline the tracker is pointing to.”
[Theo]: “Sweet. How do we do that?”
There were a few moments of awkward silence.
[Xr. Nullamor]: “You know, with the benefit of hindsight-”
[Alpha]: “This is already off to an amazing start.”
[Theo]: (Thinking) “Hm...hold on, I think I might have an idea.”
Theo pulled up the StarTrix and transformed into Final Countdown. He closed his eyes and meditated for a few moments. The StarTrix symbol began blinking, and changed to display the compass function.
[Xr. Nullamor]: “That’s...unexpected.”
[Theo/Final Countdown]: “I’m still not entirely sure how this works, but I think the nanobots give me some sort of mental connection to the StarTrix. I should be able to use that to travel to the timeline Aeron’s in.”
[Xr. Nullamor]: “That seems almost egregiously convenient.”
[Alpha]: “That’s good news. You should be all set to leave, then. Good luck.”
Final Countdown nodded in response and stepped forward, disappearing into a violet portal. Alpha turned back to face the computer console, but noticed that Xr. Nullamor was still staring after Theo with a puzzled expression.
[Alpha]: “Is something wrong?”
[Xr. Nullamor]: “...I’m not sure, but I do not trust those nanomachines.”
[Cut to a war-torn zone in a desert environment. Wrecked, crumbling ruins surround two people, a man and a woman, who are sitting down on some rubble. The man is wearing an armored bodysuit with several guns mounted on the back and multiple ammo cartridges stored in various pouches. The woman is wearing black armor with gold detailing and a mask slightly resembling a skull.]
[Man]: “It would appear as if Orion wants us back on the front lines.”
[Woman]: (Scoffs) “After the fit he threw last time, I’m surprised he’d make that decision again.”
[Man]: “Perhaps we could avoid destroying the entire payload in the crossfire this time.”
[Woman]: “I make no promises.”
[Man]: (Sighs) “Of course you don’t.”
The two of them got up and began walking through the war zone. As the woman passed by various buildings, the ones on her left seemed to implode, while the ones on her right exploded. The man swiftly drew out a pistol and shot it into the air, with the bullet somehow seeking out every piece of debris flying at them and striking it in a manner that deflected it away from them. Once all the pieces of debris had been destroyed, the bullet returned to the man, situating itself in one of his ammo pouches.
[Man]: “Stop showing off.”
[Woman]: (Smirks) “And what do you call what you just did there?”
[Man]: “Conservative use of ammunition.”
[Woman]: (Laughs) “Whatever you say.”
[Cut to Final Countdown stepping out of a portal into a forest composed mostly of pine trees, with the occasional oak here and there. The air is clear and brisk, and a slight breeze blows through the area with a bit of a nip to it. Final Countdown transforms back into Theo, who pulls up the Star Driver Gauntlet and presses ‘Select’, bringing up a list of extra features. He presses a button that reads ‘Compass’, bringing up a small interface with a red arrow pointing to the south.]
[Theo]: “Time to see if this Tracker thing really works.”
He began walking through the forest towards the direction the arrow had pointed him in. After a few minutes of walking, he stumbled over something sticking out of the ground. Upon further examination, the object in the ground appeared to be a metal stick of some kind. Though there wasn’t much of an explanation to be seen for the metal being there, Theo simply shrugged it off and kept walking.
As he walked, he slowly began to hear an odd ringing in his ears. His mind seemed to fall under some sort of haze, with little being clear to him except the fact that he was still walking. After a while of being stuck in this trance, his walking path was interrupted by him tripping over something again, snapping him back to attention. Looking back to see what had tripped him, he found that it was the same metal stick as before.
[Theo]: “The hell? I thought I was moving in a straight line. So why...”
Theo trailed off as his head began to feel foggy again. He smacked himself to avoid falling back into the trance-like state, and walked over to the metal stick, attempting to pull it out of the ground to see what is was. After a few good tries, the stick finally came loose, erupting out of the ground to reveal that it was the bayonet of a rifle that it remained attached to.
Attached to the end of the rifle was a decomposing arm.
Theo tossed away the morbid discovery in surprise, swiftly looking around himself for any immediate threats. Finding nothing, he checked the compass again, finding that the red arrow was still pointing in the same direction.
[Theo]: “Alright, something’s definitely up with this forest. Let’s try something different.”
He pulled up the StarTrix and scrolled through the alien list, selecting an alien and transforming into Rough Diamond. He attempted to fly up through the forest’s canopy, but as soon as he rose into the clear sky, an incredibly painful, high-pitched ringing hit his ears. The shock sent him tumbling back to the ground, where he transformed into Magidisk.
[Rough Diamond/Magidisk]: “Alright, I guess I’m gonna walk. But first...”
Magidisk swiped the claws on his left arm across his own head, creating an Aspect Disc. As soon as he did so, everything went completely silent, and the fog that had slowly been creeping back into his head vanished. Satisfied with having removed his own ability to hear, he stored the Aspect Disc in the record player on his chest, albeit without activating it.
He began walking south again, continuing his trek through the forest.
[Cut to Aeron walking into the forest town’s bell tower. A stationed guard attempts to stop him, but Aeron simply summons Clockwork and stops time, stabbing the guard in the back and moving on. He eventually climbs up to the top of the tower, where an old gold and silver bells hangs mysteriously in the air.]
[Aeron]: “Alright Clockwork, let it go.”
Clockwork allowed time to resume, then dispersed. An agonized yell could be heard from downstairs as the guard’s injury took effect.
[Aeron]: (Turns towards the stairwell) “Whoops, guess it wasn’t deep enough to kill him. Eh, screw it.” (Turns back to face the bell) “Now, let’s see what’s so special about this thing.”
Aeron walked around the bell, carefully looking it over. It seemed to have an odd, swooped shape and an armored appearance, but nothing else immediately stood out about it.
[Aeron]: “Huh.” (Scratches his head) “I wonder why everyone respects this thing so much. Some sorta tradition, maybe?”
Aeron knocked on the bell, attempting to see what it sounded like. Suddenly, what seemed to be a large, teal eye flashed open on the bell and stared down at Aeron, who recoiled in surprise.
The next thing the townspeople heard was a large “GONG” sound, which was swiftly followed by Aeron being thrown off the bell tower by a massive sound wave. He hit the ground with a large “thud”, letting out a grunt of pain as he made impact.
[Aeron]: “Oh for the love of...Clockwork!”
Clockwork emerged from the InverTrix, staring down at Aeron with an impressed expression.
[Clockwork]: “Wow. Less than half a minute and you already got your ass kicked by a bell.”
[Aeron]: “Just shut up and heal me, dammit!”
Clockwork reversed Aeron’s injuries, after which he pulled himself up off the ground.
[Clockwork]: “I think it’s safe to say that idea backfired.”
[Aeron]: “What? No, that wasn’t my idea. That was just a detour.”
[Clockwork]: “...Are you kidding me right now?”
[Aeron]: “Shut it. Okay, look, here’s the actual idea...”
[Cut to the inside of Plumber Base UT1. Alpha is stationed at the main computer, observing the monitor intently, as the temporary Plumber team Nova assembled is mostly slouching around.]
[F3]: “...Okay, is anyone else feeling kinda bored?”
[Pyros]: “Ya kiddin’? ‘Course we are. Dunno what to do ‘bout it, though.”
[Herc]: “We could spend some time in the training room. We hardly know anything about each other’s fighting styles or how they mesh.”
[F3]: (Poutily) “Well, my fighting style mostly consists of getting my own sleep dust blown back in my face.”
[Reaper]: “Why not just charge up a large ball of the stuff before throwing it around willy-nilly? That way, the wind won’t blow it back in your face.”
F3’s eyes widened in amazement as he considered this simple change in tactics.
[F3]: (Excitedly) “Oh. My. God. You just changed everything! Where do you get such wisdom from?!”
[Reaper]: “I have a few thousand years of experience up my sleeves.”
[Nova]: “Woah, that long? So you’re not human?”
[Reaper]: “Oh, no, I am. It’s just...well, it’s a long story, to be frank.”
Nova opened her mouth to ask another question, but was interrupted by the warning alarm suddenly going off. Alpha pulled up video footage of the alarm’s location, displaying the cloaked woman and armored man from before terrorizing part of the city, destroying everything in their path.
[Alpha]: “Looks like you’re not going to be bored for much longer. Suit up and get moving!”
[Cut back to the forest town, where Aeron is impatiently pacing at the edge of the woods. Phantom Lord watches him from nearby with a bored expression.]
[Phantom Lord]: “So, run this over with me run more time.”
[Aeron]: “For the last time, we go into town center and you possess some people. Get into their heads, see what they know. Once we’ve got answers, we go ahead and take out whatever’s infringing on my new turf. Got that?”
[Phantom Lord]: “...Yeah, nope, hearing it again doesn’t make it any less dumb.”
[Aeron]: “How is it dumb?!”
[Phantom Lord]: “What makes you think random people out and about in broad daylight are going to know anything about this mess?”
[Aeron]: “Do you have any better ideas?”
[Phantom Lord]: “...Not really.”
[Aeron]: “Then let’s just go already!”
Aeron began walking away in a huff, with Phantom Lord trailing behind.
[Cut to a relatively populated area of the city. Buildings are crumbling left and right, with the man and woman from earlier using their abilities to tear things down. After a few moments of this, a ball of purple energy shoots towards them, striking the man in the back and sending him stumbling forward a few feet. The man and woman turn to find Nova’s team staring them down.]
[Woman]: “Well, look who finally decided to show up.”
[Man]: “Do you have any idea how long we’ve been destroying things to get your attention?”
[Herc]: “What do you mean ‘get our attention’? You’re saying you expected us to show up?”
[Woman]: “Apparently, our employer doesn’t appreciate having a Plumber team in his city, so he sent us to take care of you.”
[Pyros]: “His city?”
[Nova]: “Wait a second. Two-person team consisting of whom I presume to be alien hybrids, working for a boss that doesn’t do anything himself. Lemme guess, Zodiac Organization?”
[Man]: “Correct. I am Sagittarius.”
[Woman]: “And I’m Libra.”
[F3]: “Woah, you guys are hybrids too? What kind of powers do you have?”
Libra raised her arms to face to nearby buildings. One building collapsed in on itself, whereas the other exploded in a shower of debris. Before anyone else could react, Herc suddenly split his arms into multiple limbs and grabbed the rest of team, throwing them behind him as he transformed one of his arms into a laser cannon.
[Pyros]: “Hey, what was that for?!”
[F3]: “Yeah, it just looks like she has telekinesis. No big deal.”
[Herc]: “That’s not telekinesis. I’ve seen this kind of ability before, and trust me, you do not want to be in her range.”
[Libra]: (Laughs) “What’s wrong, mercenary? Scared?”
[Herc]: “Oh, please. You don’t know the definition of that word until the idiot teenager you’re working with calls the leader of a race of extremely dangerous energy beings a ‘little shit’. I’m just not big on the idea of dying horribly at the moment.”
[Herc]: “Long story.”
Libra began walking towards the group, prompting them to begin backing away.
[Reaper]: “Alright, so, assume we were to enter her range by some unfortunate means. What would happen?”
[Herc]: “She must’ve been fused with the DNA of a Staterran. They have the ability to control the balance of any given system.”
[Pyros]: “Which means...?”
[Herc]: “Well, for example, when she destroyed those buildings, all she had to do was change their pressurization. She presumably transferred all of the pressurization of the imploded building to the exploded building, like shifting weights on a scale.”
[F3]: “I did not understand any of that.”
[Herc]: “She can implode something to explode you.”
[F3]: “Oh, crap!”
A bullet suddenly whizzed past the group, who looked towards Sagittarius, who was putting away the pistol he had fired.
[Nova]: “Man, that guy gives up quick.”
[Herc]: “I doubt it. Everybody keep an eye out for-”
Herc was interrupted by the clanging of metal behind him. He turned to look for a moment, finding that Reaper had taken out his scythe and was currently using it to deflect the bullet that had missed them moments ago, which was currently moving erratically through the air with the same speed as if it had just been fired. Reaper’s scythe was the only thing keeping it at bay, as he moved it through the air at unnatural speeds.
[Herc]: “You’ve gotta be kidding me.”
Reaper deflected the bullet once again, sending it flying an impressive distance away. As it began to turn around in the air, Reaper stopped moving, beginning what appeared to be some sort of breathing exercise.
[Pyros]: “Yo, uh, this is a really bad time for a nap, man!”
Reaper seemed not to have heard this, giving no response but to focus on his breathing. The bullet recovered its trajectory and began shooting towards the team again, heading directly for Reaper’s head. Mere milliseconds before it made contact, Reaper’s scythe suddenly began glowing with a white energy. He swung the scythe in front of the bullet again, but instead of being deflected, the bullet was instead melted and evaporated as soon as it made contact with the scythe, disappearing in flash of light and steam.
[Reaper]: “Apologies for taking so long. I’m still not very good at using my light energy beyond clumsily shooting it in large beams.”
[Nova]: “Since when can you shoot light energy?!”
[Reaper]: “Again, long story. At least I was able to get rid of the immediate threat.”
[Herc]: “Uh, I wouldn’t pat yourself on the back quite yet if I were you.”
Reaper turned to look at Sagittarius, who was dismounting what appeared to be a hand-held machine gun.
[Reaper]: “That is...unfortunate.”
- Scorpio leaves the Zodiac Organization
- Pisces and Cancer make their (unnamed) debut.
- Libra and Sagittarius make their debut.
- Reaper is revealed to be several thousand years old.
- Music Box Phantom