We're back y'all after a long time! And this chapter will be the second act-defining chapter so buckle up everyone, this will be interesting
I hope it is because i struggled with this chapter a lot
Mecha Sally was not going to waste any time; she ignited her saber and blazed through the Death Egg just to get inside faster; and 'luckily' for her she came through a relatively empty area –dragging Sonic through all of this- ultimately peacefully going into the main room and dropping Sonic into the ground with force and with her clearly showing signs of exhaustion from her recent battle.
"There was no need for such recklessness," stated Eggman "But I can always fix that later!" he said getting out of his chair with excitement "Greetings my dear assistant! Did you finish your mission?"
Sonic was struggling to get up but was cut off once Mecha fire a warning shot extremely close to him.
"Now, now! Let's not rush ourselves shall we? I assume you have found the guy you were looking didn't you? How touching. But you can't blame me for this little deal… After all, aren't you familiar with a doctor with robots as his companion?" he asked never dropping a smirk.
And with that the revelation hit Sonic like a truck in a huge way, red suit, funny mustache, and a killing robot right next to him, he had seen this guy before just not this guy exactly, familiar yet completely new, however it was obvious that he couldn't believe how he partnered up with him especially now given that he found Tom pretty much without his help. Eggman noticed this reaction which was just was just what he expected so of course he was enjoying everything about this.
"Ah, don't dwell on it partner, after all, my charm is quite-"
He was interrupted by Mecha Sally blocking Sonic who was going in for a strike, knocking the hedgehog once again.
"I see that you have no interest in continuing our partnership," he said with pride for Mecha Sally "No worries! Me neither…"
With a snap of fingers he commanded Mecha to fire with her obeying orders.
Tails and Archie Tails had been outside for a while monitoring the trio with Sally however they did heard some commotion at the distance that they guessed it came from the Sky Patrol so they safely assumed that if it was anything the guys on the ship would contact them if it was anything serious and the fact that nothing happened for a while made them feel safer except that after a few minutes an urgent call began its transmission.
"Guys! Tails..es? Are you guys there?! Is this dog even working?" asked Boom Tails quite frustrated.
"It is working Tails, just relax and tell us what you need" Archie Tails replied.
"We were looking for a robot that looked like your friend right?"
"I think she might have found us first and it didn't go that well as you would expect and since our mission was to locate her shouldn't we reevaluate our plan?"
The two Tails' looked at each other trying to process the somewhat casual tone to this statement and revelation.
"Tails. Mecha Sally. You saw her?!" Tails brought the seriousness to the topic.
"We actually fought her and it did not go pretty" he said remembering his role in the battle.
"And where is she now?"
"She left making a hole here, and I think she took Sonic with her".
"She took-? The two Sonics are still in the Death Egg, what are you talking about?"
"I thought we were dealing with dimension-y stuff… maybe there are now three Sonics in there".
The weight of the situation fully hit the two foxes and the realization that the plan was going in a steep decline was a hard one and now every decision seemed stupid but there was no time for shock or dwelling on the mistakes.
"We need to warn the others-! Tails, is everyone on board the ship okay?!" asked Tails.
"Uh… I guess? Don't worry, I think we… we can handle it, just do your thing!"
Boom Tails finished the call now heading to deal with the aftermath of the fight leaving the other two Tails to try and find out what exactly to do, apparently the Sky Patrol wasn't doing so good so maybe a retreat was a good choice but adding another Sonic to the mix was also something to consider but Mecha Sally was still their priority and that priority was right now in the same building as the two teams that were currently split.
"Sally! Sally, are you there?" asked Tails.
"We are here Tails, we are almos-" Antoine picked up before being quickly interrupted.
"Mecha Sally is in the Death Egg, we have to return to the Sky Patrol..! Do you guys know exactly where the Sonics are?"
"Um, unfortunately no but… are you sure she is here?"
"Probably, just leave with whatever you have".
The transmission finished and the message was still a shaky one but very clear and it definitely sounded urgent also because if Mecha was truly around then they could easily be at risk of a surprise/ambush.
"Um, ladies?" the coyote called.
"I say we finished," replied Sally returning to the platform along with Bunnie "We can now return to the 'Patrol and find that Mecha Sally".
"I don't zink zat's going to be a problem…"
"Why would one ship need this many hangars? Seems like overcompensating" commented Boom Sonic pretty laid back.
"This isn't an area of the ship, we're still on that base… You know, we should have returned with Sally the second we didn't found anything, this wasn't a fun waste of time".
"Eh, it's not like we can't follow them either… Aren't we, you know, quick guys?"
The chill and 'I-barely-care' attitude from Boom was taking its toll on Archie, sure, he knew he was also like this and he was aware that the likes of Sally could become annoyed by but this Sonic was like that but cranked up to eleven and even he had a limit sometimes especially when the stakes were kinda high considering that they were easily in risk of dying due to some dimensional glitching or something, not to mention the fact that this robotized Sally also tickled some nerves. It was clear to him that this version of Sonic probably never had any true threat despite his statements of being 'ready' for this job.
"Yeah, we should" he replied hiding his true feelings.
"She's already here?" asked Sally quite shocked.
"So all o' this was for nothin'?" added Bunnie.
"Let's just head to the ship for now".
The way back wasn't going to be hard since it had been pretty straightforward except for the little and very tiny problem that that way back to the hangar was blocked for some reason.
"Zis is the way we came zrough right?"
"It is…" confirmed Sally "T-Pup go ahead and try to find another path, I know this isn't the only way out" T-Pup barked obeying the order and flying away.
"Are ya okay?" asked Bunnie "I've been noticin' you a bit off Sally-girl".
"What do you mean?"
"Ya know I could have blown up this whole thing right? Why sendin' him away?"
"If zis entrance was blocked then it's better anozer alternative-".
"-After all that means we were expected here," completed Sally noticing the coyote's point "Let's follow him".
The two Tails' had decided to return to the Sky Patrol, after all, one of them was the owner of the ship and the other one was pretty much the head of the mission so right now they weren't paying attention to the group inside the Death Egg. The ship didn't looked that much damaged from outside and the only visible change was that the main entrance was already opened which based on the details they were given it wasn't a good sign.
They rushed to the main lobby not knowing what to expect but they indeed encountered a badly messed up room with everyone that was in the ship at the moment picking themselves along with everything around them.
"Tails!" shouted Amy rushing to hug her friend.
"I think I'm the one you're thinking you're hugging" replied Archie Tails.
Amy stopped for a second realizing that the two Tails had no visible difference but didn't mattered as she then pulled them both for a multi-hug which accidentally caused the two foxes to lightly make contact which led to an audible but quick 'yip' in pain with Amy obviously noticing quickly pulling them apart.
"I'm so sorry guys I-!"
"It's okay Amy," interrupted Tails "We heard of the attack here, what-".
"No we're not okay" said Boom Tails while checking something on the main computer.
"I was going to ask what happened… and if you all are okay".
"Let's just say we weren't ready," Amy replied sighing "At least the ship didn't suffer that much damage".
"I did it! Guess I'm just made for this stuff," commented Boom Tails "How are you feeling Nicole?"
"Nicole?" Archie sounded concerned "What happened with Nicole?"
"It's fine Tails," replied the lynx from the screen "I'm fine but…"
Boom Tails just handed the broken handheld to his counterpart instead of Nicole saying it, transmitting the same message which shocked the two other foxes.
"I can still be around," said Nicole quickly to mitigate the shock "We have to focus on the rest".
"Wait, where's Rotor?" asked Tails.
"Keeping the human in check" Amy replied with a sigh.
"The whole mission went out of control!" shouted the walrus from the hallway who was in the middle of a heavy discussion with Tom.
"Yeah but aren't you guys called the 'Freedom Fighters' or something? You sound like the team that saves people and... I thought this was like a rescue operation".
"Yes, it is and sometimes missions tend to not go always according to plan".
"Then we change with the plan!"
"Maybe we're in no position to change or act a new plan... And from what I saw during the battle maybe he is more than capable of handing things on his own"
Sonic slowly opened his eyes not sure where he was at the moment although he could safely assume that it should be still inside the Doctor's base after recently discovering that he was in fact the big bad guy, except that it wasn't quite a discovery, that guy just told him everything. But that was beyond the point he was now feeling stupid for how he actually bought that he was Eggman, funny mustache, goggles, red suit… which brought him to his next point: Eggman?!
That was not the doctor he was familiar with, there were similarities but he was completely different which was what caused to the persona to slip off his mind. And now he was in… a bubble? It seemed like that was what it was, some sort of crystal ball he was inside in, inside a large room. Getting shot by a dart and waking up in a cage was nothing new to him except that now he had way too many questions, lucky for him there was someone right around the corner who was waiting for him.
"Glad to see you again my friend!" said that recent but annoying voice from Eggman.
"How long you've been waiting there for me to wake up?"
"Enough..! But it doesn't matter, I'm actually glad you didn't cooperated with me".
"I only did that because- Are you sure you're Eggman? The one I know is-".
"The one you know is not here boy!" Sonic showed a clear sign of confusion which was what Eggman was hoping for so he proceeded "Well, you see, are you familiar with the concept of alternate realities?"
"That? Oh yeah, that thing is all the comics I read and- wait. So you-?"
"Yes, yes! Now I don't care how you came here or what type of universe you come from… What I docare is that you had that dear friend of yours and that was useful to me," on that last emphasis he pulled out the quill he acquired from before causing a large shock on the hedgehog's face which he enjoyed "But why bother with just a tiny fraction when you can have the whole package? And I don't need your help when I can have much more hedgehogs like you who are willing to cooperate with me".
"You think this hamster ball is gonna stop me?" he said ignoring practically everything else.
"Ho-hoh! That's where you're wrong! This actually a leftover from a little thing I made a while back with some mild alterations, able to contain the most powerful being in the world! You think you're an opponent?"
"Cool… if you say this is another universe then isn't there like another guy like me around?" he asked casually.
Eggman turned away making the biggest grin so far having come up with apparently a great idea.
"Oh yeah… him. Yes there was another Sonic like you chasing my tail that was until I got rid of him".
The shock and horror in Sonic's face was more than enough to prove that this little idea was effective and he couldn't be more pleased with that.
"Oh but don't you worry my dear pal. I'm not planning on doing anything to you for now I have far greater ideas… You see, right now we are low on fuel so it would be so much betterif I had just some sort of battery…"
The realization for Sonic set in and Eggman's job in this room was gratefully finished, so the next step was more than obvious, he pulled out a remote-like speaker sending his new command.
"Orbot! Cubot! Prepare for launch".
Hey guys! I'm leaving the chapter here I have returned and with some very important news right now: I'm gonna move out from my country so you won't be hearing from me in a while but that doesn't mean I won't keep writing along the way! Hopefully I've had some progress by the time I'm able to be here again.
I'm so glad this chapter came out just in time because I'm leaving in by September 17th so as always… Let me know what you think because I do take every feedback into consideration
See you soon(?)