I also do not own any other series that may find their way into my story. (No matter how twisted the path they used to get there...MUAH HAHAHAHAHAHA...)
I do not own any Transformers franchise, I am only using their time system at the moment
Try to guess what anime I put a parody cameo in for! In this chapter it's obvious if you like "magic" type animes. Please E-mail all guesses to my Yahoo! address, and put the subject in as "Travels Trivia". The first correct answer will be the winner and will get mentioned in my next chapter and I will ask them to make a suggestion for a specific element to the story in the future, which I will reveal when I ask for the suggestion
Just a few notes,
"example" is Normal speech
(Example) is Thoughts
(-example-) is a computer "speaking". For example, Zero's internal computer.
A Hunter Cycle is just something used by the Computer to indicate time and 1 cycle would be about two hours, therefore a day would be 12 cycles. Yes I'm using it from Beast Wars and Transformers, there's no problem with that, right?
Chapter 2: The Nexus and Other Fine Establishments
How long it took, I don't really know. It could have taken hours for me to teleport this far, it could have been an instant...heh, hell it could have been years, but all I had known during that time was agony as my systems were overloaded by the temporal energy that had interfered with the transport. If you can imagine someone cutting you open, sticking a burning ball of tar inside you, and then sewing you back up with the tar ball still burning inside, you'll have an idea of what this felt like.
I must've passed out during the transfer, because suddenly I was aware of the pain being gone. I also noted that I was not where I had left from, nor was I at the target coordinates set for the test, from what my internal environmental monitors were telling me. My eyes told me the same thing a bit differently though as I opened them to find myself floating in what looked like a cloud of multicolored energy. Streamers of energy flowed like glowing rivers in every direction, looking like strands of colored glass woven into a complex tapestry of light. It was a beautiful, but dangerous sight, as any one of those streamers could vaporize me in an instant.
(Strange...) I thought to myself, (I'll analyze this later...) Looking down at the gauntlet on my wrist, The top popped open and flipped up into a small LCD screen linked to my internal computer "Computer(1): Diagnostic on all systems, give me a damage assessment."
(-Beginning Analysis, scanning...-) the computer said as it began to check my systems, one by one, then began to display the information on the screen, scrolling through the list.
(-Status Of Unit Designation "Zero"-) and at this, the screen began to read off an extensive list of damaged systems
"Computer, halt report!" I said exasperated, and the screen froze in place, just about to go into how much reserve energy was left for a weapon I couldn't use at the moment. A pair of words flashed softly on the screen after a moment, (-Awaiting Command-)
"Computer, Revise earlier command. Show me the main systems that are damaged or offline"
(-Complying-) It read shortly before an infinitely shorter list began to scroll across the screen
Circuits for "Second Level" Processing: Non-functional, undergoing repairs
A.I. System: Non-functional, inaccessible at the moment, Awaiting repair and restoration of "Second Level"
Showing slight damage to reserve generators
20% loss of output, being repaired now
"Right" and "Left" Arm Units: Showing Servo Damage and loss of strength as result, loss is negligible
Z-saber "Learning" system is offline
DNA Soul Upgrades not available for use
Z-Buster Core showing damage, Core material classified as dead
Replacement of core is required
EAS is Non-Functional
Will be repaired in 20 cycles
Ascendant Protocols(2) Status: Offline
"Whoa, whoa, whoa, Computer Stop, list full status of 'Ascendant Protocols'
Primary Ascendant ("Offensive Manuevers" Analysis And Duplication)
Data Fragmented, Computer Has Initiated Defragmentation Procedure
Estimated Defragmentation Time: 86 Hunter Cycles
Estimated Time For Full Restoration Of Ascendant, 143 Cycles
Secondary Ascendant(Installed DNA Soul Upgrades):
Unavailable Due To Fragmented Ascendant Data
"Dammit...Okay, Current status of the combined systems for 'Zero' Unit."
Complete Status of Unit, Designation "Zero": 84% functionality; 90% functionality in 13 cycles
"No wonder AI's(3) personality is gone," Zero said to himself, as he read the information displayed on the screen, "guess it's not gonna be back up until Secondary gets back up. Oh well, Computer, analysis of energy in surroundings"
(-Beginning scan...Contradictory readings, halting analysis to prevent a paradox loop(4)-)
"Okaaaaay, this is strange... Wonder where I am... No, scratch that, how the hell do I get outta he..." and then I felt it, a force took hold of me and began pulling me towards one of the streamers of energy. As I was pulled in closer, I began to see images playing across the surface of the streams: A field scorched by war beginning to restore itself, A modern day castle with figures firing at each other with some type of energy weapons(5), a city full of both monsters and humans, appearing to live in peace.
I began falling toward another energy pillar though, (So this is how I end, huh?) and right before I was engulfed in it, I saw a flash of something along the surface, but I couldn't identify it. It looked somewhat like a tavern of some sort. Then I fell into the energy stream, and I knew no more.
-A tavern, somewhere in the forest-
The moon shone down upon a quiet lake, as a cloaked figure walked slowly towards the Elfway tavern, a moment to adjust the cloak about its shoulders, and then the figure pulled the door open and slipped inside quietly, moving to take its seat at a table near the window.
"Hmm, crowds a bit sparse, must be some kind of fair in town tonight." the figure stated as the waitress arrived to take the customers order.
"Yes, the townsfolk are having their Founding celebration today, we usually dont get too many customers in here this time of year. With the exceptions of those looking for lodging of course. Did you want anything?" the waitress asked with a smile.
"Yes," the figure said, pulling the hood of her cloak back, "I believe I will, you wouldn't happen to have any Tirellian ale would you?" the woman said, settling into her seat a bit more.
"I'll have to check, but I think so, just a moment." and with that the waitress walked off to find the order.
Turning back to the window, the woman mused to her self a moment before gazing out at the lake, reflecting the moonlight and stars above it. Noticing something was a bit off, she turned to the returning waitress.
"I'm sorry, we dont have any Tirellian ale, but I thought you might try this ale we have made in the village. The first one is on the house." The waitress said, setting the mug on the table.
"Thanks, the names Murra. I was wondering, do you know much about the stars in this area's sky?" Murra continued by pointing out the window, "There's something up there that seems to be moving this way, and I thought it was moving to fast to be a star, it's the red point right there." indicating the point to the waitress.
The waitress took a look out the window, and looked a moment, "I don't know, though the stars change every few weeks, so any difference wouldn't get much attention around here." A voice called from the other side of the tavern, and the waitress turned to answer "I'm coming! Well, I have customers to wait on, if you need anything else, just ask for me, my names Erinyl."
"I will, and my thanks for the drink" Murra said as Erinyl moved off to serve another patron. (Strange stars they have here. Of course I've probably been to most of those stars' systems myself...) she thought, turning to her ale.
Unknown to her, the star in question began falling toward the tavern, taking on a crimson glow as it streaked toward the ground, then growing to a beam of the red light as it neared. It struck the ground, surprisingly with out leaving a mark in the dirt around it, as it formed into a groaning humanoid figure in crimson armor, after fully coelescing the figure fell forward onto his knees, then to his face next to the lake, unconscious.
After a few moments he began to stir, pushing himself up from the ground with an inward groan, "Okay...That was new," He gasped out in a slightly strained voice, "...Diag.-cough, , any additional damage?"
(-Negative. Previous Assessment stands. 139 cycles to optimum efficiency-)
(Well thats a relief, I only "feel" like I had my insides turned to jelly...) after a few moments he shook it off though and turned back to his gauntlet which opened to the screen again. "Computer, how long was I out?"
(-Internal clock reports you were Non-functional for approximately 4 cycles, Right arm functions have finished repairs, and the Left Arm unit has completed all the auto-repairs it is able to also.-)
"Good, go ahead and bring the repaired systems back online." Then closed the panel. "Now where am I?" Zero said getting up, "That's strange, I don't recognize any of the constellations in this area...Computer, perform a data uplink with sattelite MH34 and try to get me the planetary coordinates in relation to HQ."
With a Negatory buzz, the computer replied, (-Unable to comply, MH34 is not available-)
"What? MH34 is one of our longest range sattelites! You should at least be able to get some sort of signal!"
(-Affirmative, however, MH34 is not detected.-)
"Can you detect the nearest sattelite in range?"
(-Scanning...No sattelites of any manufacture detected.-)
"What?! Not a single signal detected?"
(-Affirmative. Not recieving a signal from any form of artificial sattelite-)
"Possiblilites for loss of signal?"
(-Calculating...complete. Posibilities include: Sufficient damage to Communications, ion particle radiation interference, gamma interference, and destruction of said sattelites, though detectable conditions do not conform to any of these possibilities.-)
"Well that's just great..." he drawled out sarcastically, "Looks like Sigma got in a bit of a hurry coming back this time, though taking out our sattelites isn't really his style. Well, better find out what back-water part of the planet I got sent to." With that, he stood, and began walking slowly towards the building he saw ahead of him, (Looks kinda like Cass's place, seem to be a few reploids in there...) as he saw several anthropomorphic forms though the window.
Zero pushed the door open without ceremony and walked inside, taking note of the inside of the tavern. It was a dilapidated old place, but was obviously meant to be welcoming. It also had a very medieval feel to it, right down to the stone architecture and the bear rug in front of the fireplace. (Pretty low tech, though I guess they don't have much technology outside the cities(6).) Without really paying attention to where he's going, Zero absently takes a seat at one of the barstools, seemingly lost in thought.
What Zero also did not notice was the strange looks some of the patrons were giving him, and the grins of a few bandits who thought they'd found an easy mark. With a few gestures to each other, and a few muffled words of planning, the thieves slowly got up and slipped unnoticed out of the tavern to prepare an ambush.(AN: Add greasy mustache twirling and mocking "Evil Villain Laughter"(tm) at your discretion)
However, Zero was so lost in thought, that he barely registers when the bartender has moved up near him, behind the counter. "Ey' man, can I get youse somethin?" he says, tapping him on the shoulder to get his attention. Zero looks up with a distracted glance towards the source of the disturbance, and the barkeep continues "Pardon me for sayin' it mac, but ya look like ya could use a drink."
"Nah, I ain't got any cash on me right now anyway, thanks anyway." Zero said, still working on trying to find a connection with the missing sattelites, "Hey by any chance you know where on Earth I am? I kinda got lost in a messed up teleport, and dont know where I am at the moment."
"Ehn? Teleport?" the burly fellow said with a raised eyebrow "A mage then, are we? Don't get many mages out these parts, An eh... What was that place you said, Earth?" at this point a look of confusion is clear on the barkeeps face, "Never 'eard of any place like 'at 'ere in Faerun(7). This 'eres Nashkell, were a good ways south of most of civilisation, but we do a pretty good job all on our own out here, even with the occasional beast attack. Well anyway, I been spoutin my mouth off too long again it seems, WAH HAHAHAHA..." and the barkeep shook slightly with his rolling laugh, "Don't worry about yer coin friend, th' first ale's on th' house." Plunking a good sized mug down in front of Zero, the companionable bartender moved off to see if anyone else needed anything.
(Guess I better get something working while I'm waiting...) He thought as he pulled his lightsabre from its mount on his shoulder and took it apart, laying the parts out on a napkin on the counter as he worked. "Ah, so that's it, the energy converter is busted..." Reaching into a compartment on his waist, he fishes out a field replacement for the converter and sets it in place, then begins putting the complex weapon back together, piece by piece.
(Computer, reason for such a long Defrag time on the Ascendant system) Zero asked his internal computer as he worked.
(-Ascendant data centers report existence of stored information not accessible before. Due to the current state of fragmentation, information on that data is not available at this time-)
(So there's weapon information that was coded, or encrypted?)
(-The protocol of the fragmented data would suggest the data was encrypted, but there is no way to tell now. It will be available after being defragmented and recompiled-)
Murra had been scanning the room for any problems she might have with the locals, but everyone seemed to be more concerned with the stranger at the bar. To Murra, he seemed normal enough, and wearing armor that obvious would definitely draw attention to him. Then her gaze focused on what he was working on, and her eyes widened. As she had the only clear view from this point, no-one else had noticed it.
(A lightsaber? Here? I didn't think the council had any Jedi out in this part of the Outer Rim.) Murra thought to herself, (Unless he's Sith...better to wait and see. Though if he IS a Sith, I wonder why he hasn't noticed me yet)
Murra continued to watch the red-armored man as he worked at his sabre. Then, after he finished reassembling the device, she stared inconspicously as he opened a panel on his wrist to reveal a mass of wiring going deep into his gauntlet and even into the wrist itself it would seem. (He's a droid? No, he can't be, that face is too human. Must be some form of cyborg,) then she stopped, considering the long mane of yellow tied back behind his helmet, (though I've never seen a cyborg with that much hair.)
Pulling up her hood, Murra shrank down a bit trying to make herself less noticable, as the stranger in the crimson armor got up and walked towards the door after finishing his repairs. Right before he got to the door he stopped suddenly, then looked around as if looking for someone. He shrugged it off after a moment, mumbled something to himself quietly, then walked out the door towards the lake again. After he went through the door, Murra stood and slid out the door behind him, determined to keep an eye on him.
Zero stood at the lake's edge, watching its gentle waves moving across the surface for a moment. His sabre gripped tightly in his hand, Zero brought the weapon up in front of him, and thumbing a switch on the side, a deep, emerald energy erupted from the end of the small hilt. Growing to form a blade of energy which flickered for a moment, it then strengthened itself until it almost looked solid. He gave the green blade a few experimental swings, then deactivated it. "Well, nice to know I have at least one working weapon..." he muttered out.
Resheathing the sabre to its mount on his back, an almost silent 'snap' from behind alerted him to the presence nearby. (So someone's got an interest in me?) Looking to the nearby treeline he grinned a bit (well, let's see just how interesting I am...) he thought before he began walking deeper into the surrounding forest.
(What is he? I can't sense anything dark about him, but I...wait, I can't sense him at all!) Astonished at this latest revelation, Murra looked around in the trees, (I don't see any of those bloody pests, ysalamiri... So, why can't I sense him?) bringing out every memory she had about hiding ones presence with the Force, not a single one masked the Force itself.
Now with all this thinking, we can forgive her if her attention wasn't focused as tightly on the environment, right?
A soft 'snap' (oh Bloody hells...) came from directly below her, and she froze, then slowly looked down at her foot to see a twig, snapped in half. One half was sticking out on each side of her boot. Then, glancing up again to make sure she didn't lose sight of the strange armored man and to make sure he hadn't heard her, she rolls her eyes and mutters, "great, just bloody freakin' great..." and paying more attention this time, creeps up further to keep him in sight.
Then, when they reached a clearing, the stranger just suddenly stopped. Not as if he needed to rest, but just stopped apparently trying to decide where to go next. That's when he spoke up, "Come on out," he said a bit testily, "...I know you're there."
"...I know your there." Zero was a bit angry at how the presence kept flickering in his sensors, seeming to be one place, then another place the next instant. It reminded him way too much of fighting Sigma when he had been warping around his arena, launching attacks at random.
The cloaked figure moved slowly out into the clearing, the hem of the cloak being lost in the debris of the forest, so you couldn't tell where the cloak starts and the ground begins.
"Okay, buddy, Now who the hell are ya? and why are ya followin me like some demented stalker?" He practically yelled at the figure, who was reaching up to the hood of the cloak. It was a bit easy to tell he wasn't happy, but that could be because his sensors were picking up signs of other people in the forest nearby, but it couldn't locate them. (Dammit, she has reinforcements?!)
Jerking her hood down from her head, Murra stared a moment at the enraged Hunter. "I could ask you the same thing! What in the Nine Hells are you?!" She herself was madder than hell, Sith just pissed her off something royal. "Damned bloody Sith, always coming up with new ways to hide yourselves..." and then her senses picked up the other people hiding in the woods. (AND they're always bringing their friends with them when you don't! Stupid Murra, stupid!)
As Zero and Murra's conversation degenerates into an argument of recriminations...
We take a moment from this fic to consider a group of bandits the Honored Reader might remember.
Yes, that's them. The ones from the bar. Recognize the stupid grin?
Now, given that they have been following both people without being seen or heard, and that both are reasonably angry, they should be rather easy to mug right?
You'd think they'd know better.
Although, seeing as how all they've seen as far as weapons on the man in red armor goes, is what looks like a hilt with no sword on it, and the woman has something similar, and that the group has never come across a Maverick Hunter OR a Jedi before in their lives, as before with Murra's attention, this lapse in judgement can be forgiven them...Right?
And actually right about this time is when the leader decided to jump down on the arguing pair, landing next to them. Of course they weren't really paying attention to him, so he decides to yell...
"YOUR MONEY OR YOUR LIVES!"
"YOUR MONEY OR YOUR LIVES!" echoed through the forest, stopping Zero and Murra's argument.
As one, Zero and Murra blinked at each other for a moment, then turned and looked towards the bandit, who immediately pulled himself up to his full Orc height and brandished his rather large dagger menacingly at the two of them.
"Youse 'eard me! 'and over your valuables, and I won't 'ave to gut ya!"
"SHUT UP!" Zero and Murra yelled at him, and then both of them slugged him hard in the gut, blowing all the air out of his lungs and knocking the poor bandit out cold.
The other bandits up in the trees stared on in disbelief, as they watched their leader get knocked out from one belt to the gut, and the two began arguing again. Granted he was hit with two fists, they still hit him at the same time. As they stared Zero and Murra were back to their yelling, this time insults had flown thick between them, and finally drawing their respective weapons as they backed out to a respective distance. Zero his Lucas, the bright gold plating of the sabre glinting slightly in the moonlight, and Murra her own Jedi lightsabre, Her own craftsmanship showing proudly in the sleek metallic lines of its shaft.
"That's it! I'm taking care of you before you have a chance to corrupt or kill anyone!" With a distinctive 'snap-hiss' sounding out, Murra charged forth from where she had backed to as her blade activated, a slightly-calmed but focused look upon her features as she charged across the clearing.
Zero's shining emerald blade came up into a Defensive position as he stood to break Murra's charge, the energy blades clashing together as Murra reached him, and the two blades of light began moving in their own graceful arcs over and around the two opponents.
Zero struck back almost immediately from breaking her charge, swinging his sabre in from the right, cutting an emerald path from the right, which stopped as it met Murra blocking with her own sabre. A slight kiai escaped him as he continued through the swing bringing the emerald blade around in a complicated pattern, meant to throw her off, before swinging around and down towards Murra's left kneecap.
Murra leapt over the strike at her legs, before rolling down and dropping into the splits to avoid the reversed horizontal slash that followed, barely missing the top of her head. Zero recovered from his hard side swing, and used the excess momentum in a spin which brought his sabre over in a vicious downward slash. The cut would have split Murra in half, if she hadn't raised her sabre just then. It had come straight up, above her head without looking. Zero's blade clashed off of Murra's and he leapt back putting some space between them. (How'd she DO that? I'm sure she couldn't see me, It's like she knows where the blade is going before I do...) Murra had also rolled away and leapt to her feet, keeping her distance from the crimson Hunter.
(He's skilled with that sabre he's got, that's for sure.) she thought as she waited for his attack. When it didn't come she gathered herself in and leapt, pushing off the ground with her legs as she augmented her jump with the Force. She came down on a collision course from above, her blade ready to cleave his head off. Her attack also met with a block from the other sabre, before she twirled into another slice from her bottom left to top right. Zero had practically danced out of the way of that one, only to have his eyes widen as he dodged suddenly to the left when Murra's sabre thrust in where his head had just been. Rolling onto his back while taking hold of her wrist, Zero kicked out, sending Murra flying in a reversed throw. Murra flipped in the air once before landing gently on her feet, while Zero had rolled all the way back to his feet on the other side of the clearing.
Both combatants were having to catch their breath, each seeing it as some unspoken rule to wait for the other to recover. Zero and Murra slowly circled each other as they waited, looking for some unseen signal or sign that would begin the battle all over again. Well something came, anyway... (What the...) Zero thought as five more bandits jumped out of the woods.
(For the love of the Correllian star...what now?) Was Murra's thought as the thieves quickly lined up before them.
"Hey! Y-Y-Your g-gonna stop r-right now and g-give us your magic s-s-swords and our b-boss back right n-n-n-n-now!" At this, the remnants of the (AN: IMHO) "Incredibly Stupid" bandit gang(8) drew their daggers and shortswords, holding them shakily at the ready against Murra and Zero.
Murra stared in disbelief at the group of bandits. Their blades were shaking so bad, a strong wind could've disarmed the entire group. Staring at the unbelieveable scene, she blinked...then she blinked again, "You...you want us to what?" She had not been able to understand him, his voice had been shaking so bad. Then she heard a chuckle from beside her, and she turned to find Zero's face cracking up. He was fighting it, but before long he lost it, and began laughing so hard you could hear it all the way back to the tavern they all had left. Murra's watched his expression for a moment, before beginning to crack up herself.
Zero could be heard muttering things to himself in between laughs, until he finally composed himself enough to say, "That's the most hi-HAAA HA HAHAHA-hil..hilarious thing I've ever SEEN!" and laughed a bit more after that. Then after composing himself slightly, he finally chuckled out, "Ooh, what are ya gonna do, rattle me to death with those shaking pocket-knives of yours?" and with that he burst into laughter again.
The bandits, finally realizing they were being insulted, began to get angry. Forgetting about Murra entirely, they charged Zero as a group, their blades raised high as they dashed in on him.
(AN: Well, their leader just assaulted a Jedi and a Maverick Hunter -Both wearing armor- at the same time and got plastered right in front of them. How smart can the rest be if that's the leader?)
Suddenly Zero's mirthful expression sobered itself, and a predatory smile spead itself across his face. He had dropped back into a defensive stance, still chuckling as they charged. Then, as they crossed the halfway point, he yelled out a challenge to the approaching thieves, "Heh heh, come on ladies. Let's see what ya got."
End of Chapter 2
FOOTNOTE (Yes you authors know what this is but DEAL WITH IT! Some people don't know, Like...um...Like That Guy!-points in an entirely random direction-)
(-That Guy- Huh?)
(1) Yes, Zero has an Internal Computer, he may be a Reploid, but he still had a human brain to begin with. If you need an example, think the computer on the Enterprise from those startrek shows, or Cable's computer from the X-men cartoon.
(2) ASCENDANT, one of Thomas J. Light's greatest achievements in the Robotic weaponry, which would include Reploid weaponry since reploids are just highly advanced Robots. This is the system that made Megaman the warrior he was before, and the warrior he is now as X, giving him his ability to copy his enemies powers. As they were in the plans Light made for the Reploid design that Bass stole for Wily, (read "Bass is Not a Fish" by Red Draco for this backstory, It's like the first or second Chapter, Ascendant is my own interpretation of this system, It's never actually mentioned in Red-sama's story) Zero possesses them as well, though they have been altered and simplified by Wily to better suit Zero's fighting style
(3) The Personality for Zero's computer, it will be reactivated in an upcoming chapter
(4) Paradox loop: For example, having a computer analyze and decide which is true between the two phrases
A: Sentence B is false
B: Sentence A is true.
This would cause the computer to overload, because it would just loop over and over and over until it burned itself out, Zero's computer has safeguards to prevent this
(5) FPS fans probably recognize this universe
(6) Remember a lot of Mavericks make their fortresses out in the wilderness, so I wouldn't want any technology to draw attention to myself either
(7) I apologize to all D&D players who use the Forgotten Realms world, for the Idiocy I'm about to put on their world
(8) To quote a footnote by Hung Nguyen in his story Rune Soldier Ranma "WAH HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!" If you don't get the joke in this section, you cannot call yourself an Anime fan.
-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=- Ok people, Chapter two is here! Welcome to your slow spiral to doom!
But seriously, This was hard to write, but I had a blast working with my friend Murra to work out the dialog and curses for her character. This is probably going to take a little while before I am able to get the next Chapter up, but in the mean time my Muse has hit me with the inspiration I needed for another Ranma Songfic! You might wanna get your flashlights though cause this one is headed for the Dark-side, and you don't want to be lost in the night.
Now Hunters, I've given my challenge, the "Travels Trivia" and the first correct answer gets to help me with an upcoming chapter with a suggestion for one of it's elements, So send in those emails quick!(Note: Please Send these "!Directly!" to my Email address "zerotraveler at "(it won't accept my "at" symbol) and NOT through the review system. doesn't like us using the review system as a suggestion box, and I understand why, cause I worked in tech support at one time, fixing Email servers)
Thank you, all those who reviewed my fics. It sounds corny and lame I know, but you are a part of my writing now, therefore you are a part of my stories too. Thanks again!
This is jammin-2099 AKA Zero the Dimensional Traveler
Stay Vigilant, Hunters