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Chapter 33: Welcome Home
This story is in no way intended to infringe on the established copyrights and trademarks of Capcom Co., Ltd. and Nintendo Co., Ltd. It is for entertainment purposes only and is not intended for sale. It may be freely distributed providing that no alterations to the story are made.
The characters and incidents portrayed and the names in this story used herein are fictitious and any similarity to the name, character, or history of any person, living, dead, or otherwise, is purely coincidental and unintentional.
For your reference, today you will have: mega trouble.
Chapter 33: Welcome Home
The laboratory was vacant, quiet, and still. Scattered items and boxes, bits of leftover technology, laid haphazardly on the ground, waiting to be cleaned up. Silver walls reflected the white ceiling light left on, after nobody had come to turn it off. No one was there to see the air particles shimmer in the middle of the room. Bright photons lit up like fireflies and gravitated toward a single spot in the space. A star like orb of luminescence grew and grew as the photons collected, until it collapsed into itself and opened up into a giant black and gold portal. The iridescent circle undulated like a body of water, and hummed like a generator increasing in velocity. Small tendrils of violet electricity danced along its surface.
The circle pulsated faster, like an organic heartbeat, as if it was going to vomit up something. When it also seemed like it was vibrating it spat out a blue-armored robot onto the floor. Gracefully he tumbled down and landed on one knee, his boots clinking against the metal floor.
Mega Man rose from his kneeling position as if he was being reborn. He looked around briefly, and upon recognizing his surroundings, was very glad to be back home. He turned around and the portal winked out like an eye just as he saw it. With the portal closed, he said a silent goodbye to Hyrule and his hero friend and turned back around. He wasn't without a little regret for leaving them behind, but they would do just as well without his presence. They had before. It was time he focus back on his own world.
Looking up at the chronometer, he found time had passed at the same rate in Hyrule as it did here. But he had arrived in a different room than he had left, which made Mega Man curious. With all the scientific variables that floated in the air from that strange teleportation device, he was surprised he made it back at all, and not embedded in the core of some planet. This was one of Dr. Light's labs in the basement, but not the same one he left from. The transportational device was nowhere to be seen. The door was not the same as what he had closed to destroy Elec Man. Did that mean he had come here without the help of the device? And it was a mess, like someone had torn through the place looking for something. If Wily's robots had made it down here, it wasn't to destroy, it was to untidy.
"Boy, you're gone for a few days and everything goes to pieces," he said to himself. The clutter around him did nothing to alleviate his fears about what had happened since he left. Any number of things could have happened in the days he was gone. Without Mega Man there to defend, Wily could have taken over the world in that short a time. He was surprised the doctor hadn't completely destroyed the mansion and all its residents, since that was what Mega Man thought his intention was when he barged in here with a mechanical tank and six robot masters. Dr. Light and Roll could be dead right now and he had been putzing around Hyrule all that time. He should never have waited as long as he did to get back. Ridiculous. But he couldn't compound that fear by standing there repenting. Now was the time for action. And he would never know what had happened if he stood there dumbly.
Though the room was a mess, the equipment was still in working order. It was just the free-floating properties that were damaged, mostly documents and some small tools and electronic boxes. He ran to the nearest computer console and started up the intranet utilities. The first thing he did was activate in-house communication.
"Dr. Light?" he spoke into the telecom. "Dr. Light?" While he called for his creator, he multi-tasked and brought up the tracking signals. It looked like there were no moving objects in the house - human or robot. It was completely deserted. A kidnapping, perhaps. Dr. Wily had done it before, that was likely his reason for invading his home. Even stranger, as he panned through household cameras, the building had been completely repaired. Had Wily even been there? Had Mega Man been transported back in time to before he left? A quick re-confirmation on the computer's time said that he wasn't. Time was flowing as smooth and steady as ever. There were definitely some events that he needed filling in on.
"Roll? Can you hear me?" he talked into the microphone. Nothing coming from the house. He tried an internal link with Roll as he had just before he left. "Roll, please come in." His link hung there in dead space, never getting an answer. "Roll! Roll!" he communicated over the wireless line. Nothing. The connection had terminated seeking. Something strange was definitely going on. Why would she be neglecting to communicate with him? Unless she was otherwise incapacitated. He couldn't bear the thought of her being kidnapped by Wily too, probably being reprogrammed or disassembled. Maybe put into Wily's robot army.
Something Mega Man couldn't put his finger on, but this seemed less and less like Wily's doing. If something had happened to Dr. Light, where would Roll be? Either looking for him or... somewhere else he couldn't deduce. Mega Man shook his head, there were too many unknowns to try and form a reasonable hypothesis. Despite these obstacles he was still optimistic, since he was now home. This was his environment and he had the control again. His next step was to get topside and find out what in the world had happened in his absence. He shut off the console and moved towards the door out.
No sooner had he done that than he felt a sensation on the top of his helmet. He looked back, aiming his arm cannon. The leftover debris on the floor shook and gave way to several small heli-robots hovering in a circle around him. They were shaped like blue pill bugs with needle-like snouts and scowling visual receptors.
"Mega Man detected. Program activated," they buzzed like a choir. It looked like Wily hadn't left without a calling card after all. A trap especially meant for him. One of them fired a red laser from its snout. Mega Man jumped out of the way as it harmlessly scorched the floor.
"Nice welcome party, but I'll pass," he sneered in the air and triggered his firing circuits. The plasma cannon sparked pitifully with an unpleasant defunct sound.
"What?" he exclaimed as he landed. Nothing came out. He tried firing again. Not even a sparkle this time, just another irritating buzzing noise, indicating that something was wrong.
The hover-bots began pelting him with laser shots. Mega Man hastily sped out of the way. The shots were poorly timed, but there were a lot of them to avoid as he ducked and weaved around the room.
As he did so, he performed a quick diagnostic on his Mega Buster. The cannon ran on internal energy, not like the copied weapons, so it should never have run out. That wasn't the problem here, though. It looked like the cannon was kaput. The test quickly revealed why - firing the Triforce beam had fried his circuits. The weapon slot the golden power had occupied had been rendered completely unusable. He'd never be able to fire that weapon again. Given its power, it was probably better that way. But if he didn't find Dr. Light to get repaired he'd never be able to fire anything again.
Mega Man staggered away as a stray laser shot nearly hit him in the back. These pesky guards were going to be difficult to defeat if he didn't have his primary weapon. They were darting in and out as fast as hummingbirds, shooting their lasers and swooping to and fro to avoid being attacked. He had to avoid getting hit as much as possible due to his low level of power. But without his arm cannon, how would he do it? There had to be another way.
"I didn't travel halfway across dimensions just to get killed by a couple of bugs." He ran over to the cabinet side and grabbed hold of the industrial strength molding. In his vice-grip he easily tore it off the plating. Turning back to the bots he held the strip of metal out like a sword. "Let me show you some things I learned on my vacation."
He leapt up into the air and sliced downward. The bot split neatly in half, dropping to the ground. The others spread out to take its place and fill in the gap. Mega Man brandished his makeshift sword as he squatted down into a battle position. "It's definitely different without my buster," he commented. "But I'll make do."
He threw the sword into the air like a boomerang at the hover-bot to his right. It got caught in the propeller blades, tearing them like tinfoil. Without lift, the bot dropped like a rock, bursting into a yellow explosion on the ground.
The sword hit against the ceiling and dropped out of reach. The other six heli-bots were about to fire. Mega Man tipped up a fallen metal table and slid under it. The metal blocked the laser shots, fizzling them out on the titanium shield. Like the mindless drones they were, they kept firing, expecting to penetrate the shield, while Mega Man sat under it, planning what to do next.
"The best offense is a good defense," Mega Man quipped. He grabbed hold of the two table legs and swung the heavy board around like a bat, smashing two of the bots nearest the wall. The ruined bugs slid off the wall like their organic counterparts. Four to go.
Mega Man slipped the table over his back like a turtle as the assault continued. With the weight of the table boring down on him he trudged to the corner of the room where his sword had dropped as the malicious helicopters rained down fire. He set it down and cautiously reached out from his protection for the piece of metal. A red laser beam sparked near his hand, knocking the weapon away.
"Smarter than you seem," the android muttered. He picked up the table again and set it on its short side so Mega Man could stand behind it. The heli-bots flew up and surrounded him.
"Can't we just talk about this?"
The robots fired their lasers. Mega Man jumped up in the air, narrowly avoiding the explosion. The robot's turrets followed him in the air and fired at the apex of his leap. Mega Man tucked into a ball as the blasts flew over his head. As soon as he touched down he rolled back and grabbed his makeshift sword from the corner.
"Now, you really get to see what I learned."
He ran forward and slid, kicking the table out from above him. He ended on the opposite side of the room as the table crashed into another hoverbot, catching on its snout and then its rotors, sending it crashing to the ground. The remaining three fired at will, leaving Mega Man scattering in a circle to avoid the blasts. When he reached the end of the room he jumped on the wall cabinet and flew at the hover-bots.
Everything seemed to happen in slow motion from there. He kicked off of the wall in such a way that he spun around like a top, holding his sword out, effectively becoming a weed whacker. The blade spun through the first hover-bot in a clean slice. The second one caught the molding in its helicopter blades, yanking it out of Mega Man's hand. It spun end over end like a meteor and crashed into the wall, crushing it.
Mega Man was about to crash headlong into the third and final hover bot, whose laser cannon was lit red, about to fire in his face. With lightning reflexes Mega Man reached out and grabbed the enemy out of the air, like plucking an apple.
The robot landed feet-first on the ground, holding the struggling helicopter in his hand with the laser end pointed clearly away from him. It wobbled back and forth like a child's toy struggling to be released. "Not as tough as you look." He turned it upside down and it fell sharply as the rotors propelled it downward. Mega Man smashed it under his boot.
"All right, that distraction's out of the way." Mega Man dusted himself off and exited the room, ready to find his two missing family members. The automatic sliding door opened readily for him and shut as soon as he was through, leaving the room behind him empty, with a little more junk in it than what he arrived to.
It was not empty for long though. Nearly a moment after Mega Man left, the shimmering portal materialized into the room again, astounding anyone who would have been in there. It throbbed violently once and out came a human clad in green, wearing a cap of the same color. The disorientation caused him to land hard on the white metal floor, nearly sending his teeth into his tongue as he lay on his stomach.
"Ugh," Link said, "That's not fun." He readjusted his cap as he stood up. Patting himself down he checked out all his parts. He felt frozen on the inside but burning on the outside. Like broken apart and put back together again. He wasn't sure all his components had made it through, but on a quick inspection, it looked like whatever he had on his person when he went through made it with him.
Once he had adjusted to feeling normal again, he looked around in wonderment, but not awe. It looked like he had ended up in a messy bathroom. He was expecting the tall buildings that were spoken to him and dozens of beings like Mega Man to be wandering around. This looked like some sort of fancy storeroom that hadn't been cleaned. Boxes and indiscernible items were strewn about the space. Link guessed if Mega Man wasn't human, maybe he didn't live like a human. Maybe he didn't bother with niceties like cleanliness, since they didn't care. Link turned over a box that was in his way.
Suddenly a blue globular object rose out what he had just kicked over. Link's eyes went wide as he stared at some sort of flying bug in the air with a long snout pointed at him.
"Destroy human," it buzzed.
Next Chapter: House Guest