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Sunrise

by Dinova

Dinova Inspired by Mr.RMA's character one-shot, I have created a similar story Showcasing my character Dinova. Demonstrating some of my characters, their personalities, and their abilities.
“Ultimately, after review of style, technique, tactics and overall skill, the winner is...” Karu paused dramatically, making the already breathless audience even more anxious. With a smile he announced loudly, “The Steel Brusher, ARMA!”

***

Drake clapped his hands together, pumping a fist into the air as he watched a recorded video of the fight. He had ben elated to hear that ARMA had won his next match and had been dying to see footage. Luckily, he had been able to look at an archived match in the lobby of the stadium on a rentable terminal, watching the android eek out another victory.

“I don’t understand, Drake.” Drake didn’t blink as the deep, quiet voice spoke. Most likely, it was because he was the only one who could hear it. The form of Solaris appeared, coiled around his shoulders. The ethereal-looking white dragon was inaudible and invisible to everyone except Drake, as usual. “He was your enemy just a few days ago, yet you cheer and praise his victory now, why?”
Drake smiled as he replied, “We were never enemies. We were just on the same battlefield with the same goal. Sharing that goal makes us comrades, and so I’m happy to see my comrade succeed where I failed!” Drake’s smile spread from ear to ear, convinced that what he said had sounded awesome.

However, Solaris shook his head and said, “That makes no sense...”

“Oh, what do you know?” Drake retorted, miffed.

***

Drake smiled cheerfully as he returned to the front desk of the lobby and signed out, his use of the terminal over. He signed ‘Dinova’ on a clipboard and handed it back to the receptionist, who smiled and said, “Thank you very much, Dinova. We hope to see you again!” Drake nodded and turned to leave. As he exited and began walking aimlessly down the street, he wondered how strange it was that he had started using his alter ego as his name almost exclusively. Ever since he had come here, he had taken to using Dinova as his name, not Drake. There was no real need for it, any enemies or loved ones he had were a universe away, literally. The whole alter ego thing was kind of redundant, but it was better too. Drake had failed so many times, but Dinova always won. Here, Drake didn’t even need to exist, he didn’t need to be a failure. Dinova could be front and center.

“That’s a foolish belief.” Solaris said, his voice drifting into Drake’s head. The dragon had been listening in on his thoughts. “The only reason Dinova is so powerful, other than myself obviously, is because of you. Unlike most humans, you are not so weak as to succumb-”

“SHUT UP SOLARIS!!” What Drake had intended as a mental shout, had come out as a vocal one, startling several passersby with a tear-filled scream at empty air. His fists shook and he stopped in his tracks. The people that lost themselves to others of Solaris’ race weren’t weak. They were prisoners. It was Dinova’s duty to save them, all of them. How dare Solaris say that she was weak? The only reason that she was gone was because Drake had been the weak one. ‘I was pathetic. She risked herself to protect me and now she’s gone!’ Drake thought bitterly. Solaris hadn’t meant to call her weak, but it was Angela. If anyone was stronger, it was her.

Maybe it was his emotions playing tricks on him, but he could have sworn he’d seen someone in the crowd. He shook it from his mind, but soon it came back and this time, Drake was certain. There, walking down the opposite side of the street. A women in a black dress, admittedly out of place, with a slender face and straight, black hair draped over one shoulder. Drake couldn’t mistake her face. She had the same eyes that he did. It was Angela.

Drake’s mind wouldn’t work. How was it even possible that she was here? As she continued to walk through the crowd, Drake began to follow her. At first, it was unconscious but soon he was following as close as he dared. How? Why? There were so many questions zipping through Drake’s head. Perhaps the greatest was, ‘Is she here under her own power?’

Drake continued to tail her until she ducked into an alleyway. He followed the alley to where it opened into a large, empty lot. In the center stood Angela staring straight at him. Solaris buzzed in his ear, “Be careful, Drake. This smells like a trap.”

Drake nervously reached his hand to the bracelet on his left wrist and said nothing. He hoped this wasn’t a trap, but reluctantly, he’d be ready if it was. Angela locked eyes with him and her face seemed to melt into a flurry of emotions. Joy, Sadness, Regret, and more were all present on her face. She cried out, “Drake, mi hermanito!” She ran at Drake her arms extended to embrace him. Drake’s guard dropped and he opened his arms to welcome his sister. In that second, the moment went from a happy reunion to a fearful firestorm.

Drake noticed the silver snake ring coiled around her finger with a black gemstone in its mouth. He noticed the shift in Angela’s face form tearful joy, to murderous glee. He noticed the shadowy energy that flowed around her fingers as she reached for him. He leapt back, tapping the gemstone on his bracelet. Tears stung his eyes before they disappeared behind the visor of his helmet as he became Dinova. His armor appeared, shimmering bright silver. Similar, black armor appeared on Angela, but much slimmer and without a helmet. Her eyes had become reptilian slits and fangs poked from her mouth. “Aww, don’t you miss me little brother? I missed you, especially after our last meeting.” Angela said, her voice dripping with honey, but the murderous gleam in her eyes was unmistakable.

Dinova could practically feel his blood boiling as he screamed, “Necrid! How are you still alive?!”
Necrid laughed, high and cold. “Simple, you were too weak to kill your sister, so I managed to survive. How much does it hurt, knowing that Angela is mine once more?” Necrid ran a gauntleted finger down her chin, as if she was stroking Angela’s face.

Dinova screamed and lunged at Necrid, trying to punch her in the face. She blocked the fist with her gauntleted hand and commented, “No overly dramatic battle cries? No pretense? My, my, someone’s upset…” She cackled and kicked Dinova aside, lifting her hand and snapping her fingers. Two large reptilian creatures that seemed to be made of stone appeared on either side of Necrid, two weaker creatures with human hosts that served her. With a throaty snarl, they lunged at Dinova, each aiming massive claws at him. Dinova summoned a light sword and lowered himself into a ready position. He rolled away from one while parrying the claws of the other with his sword. He spun and swung the sword at them both. One of the creatures leapt aside, but Dinova felt the sword cut cleanly through the other. The creature’s form began to crack like broken glass. Its form shattered, leaving behind an unconscious woman who fell to the ground, unharmed. The other creature wasted no time in attacking Dinova again. This time, Dinova tapped the golden bracelet on his wrist siphoning as much surrounding light into his arm as possible. As the creature closed in on him, Dinova ducked down and slammed his fist into the creature’s midsection. The blow eradicated the control on the creature’s host and it shattered, leaving its host behind as well.

Dinova didn’t get to rest long as Necrid began to close in. She dashed towards Dinova with blinding speed and sent a spinning kick flying at his head. Already tired from using Glorious Star, he wasn’t able to dodge the attack but managed to block it at least. Necrid was expecting that though and spun in midair delivering another kick. This one caught Dinova off guard and sent him hurtling to the other side of the lot. As he came to a stop, he saw darkness close around him and felt an intense pressure all around him. Necrid had trapped him in a ball of gravity so strong there was no light to fuel his abilities, he’d be crushed by it soon armor or no.

Solaris spoke urgently into Drake’s ear, “Drake, I understand that Necrid controls your sister, and that her hold on her is so strong that to separate them would kill her. But if you continue to restrain our power, we will be the ones to perish!”

Drake knew that Solaris was right, but he couldn’t make himself do it. He was the reason that Necrid controlled Angela, it was his fault. How could he fight and possibly destroy her for his mistake? He had become resigned to his fate, when he heard a soft voice through the darkness, and it wasn’t Solaris.

A woman’s voice pleaded with him, “Drake please, don’t give up!

Drake recognized the voice. It was Angela. Not even sure if he was dreaming or not, Drake said, “But if I-”

No! If you die, I’ll still be Necrid’s prisoner! Only it’ll have been my hands that killed you! Please, fight. At least live and find another way to free me.”

Drake felt so many emotions his head was spinning, most of all, he was angry. Angry at Necrid for taking his sister and angry at himself for giving up. He complained so much that it was his fault that Necrid controlled Angela, but he had almost guaranteed that Angela remained her prisoner.
“Lost your fight, Dinova? Aw… is it too much pain, the choice of killing or abandoning your sister? Let me put you out of your misery then!” Necrid began slowly ramping up the gravity field, done with toying and ready to crush Dinova.

Perhaps it was just a dream, but Angela was right. It was time to fight not lay down and die! He focused on the energy inside him, focusing on his own power. He forced it towards the remainder of Solaris’ energy and the two collided in an explosion of force. The force exploded outward, tearing the gravity field to shreds. Dinova stood up from the ground, unharmed. Ripples of heat were rising from his now golden armor along with light shining from it. Dinova extended his arm and pointed a clawed finger at Necrid and declared, “Evil snake that hides in the shadows, your time is up! This infinite light will burn away the shadows you seek and leave you to rot!”

Necrid clapped, seemingly unimpressed. “Oh wonderful, look who remembered how to boast…” she said sarcastically. Under the visor, Dinova was smiling. Despite her words, Necrid had an uncertain look in her eye. She had been so sure she could hide behind Angela to make Dinova hold back, but now that he wasn’t, she wasn’t even guaranteed to survive, much less win. Necrid wasn’t too willing to fight Dinova directly, so she summoned a dozen more rock creatures. Half of them clustered around her like guards while the other half surged towards Dinova. He barely needed to care about the creatures at this point.

As the first one reached him, he side-stepped dodging it’s scything claws. Then he stepped forward and placed his hand on its head, summoning a light sword and piercing the creature’s head. Dinova took the sword in hand and spun, catching the next creature in the chest with the blade. As two more creatures came at him he leapt into the air, summoning a second sword in his free hand. He brought both blades down on the creatures and ran at the last two creatures remaining. They hesitated seeing the others defeated so easily and Dinova took advantage of it. He ran between the two creatures, crossing the two swords in front of him and slashing through both creatures as he passed.

Dinova paused for a moment as he set his sights on Necrid. This power, Infinity Form, it was so amazing! He had been afraid of how much strength it gave him, of how much damage it could cause. He had thought that not using it would help him protect people, but now he understood. It was no better than betraying the people he meant to protect if he didn’t fight with everything he had. If he couldn’t fight because he was holding back, then who was he really helping?

He abandoned his thought and refocused on Necrid and her creatures. They were clustered tightly around her ensuring that Dinova would hit her (and Angela) if he tried to attack them. At least, that was their logic. Dinova’s swords disappeared as a pair of angel-like wings spread from his back and he rose into the air. He tapped the bracelet on his wrist and lifted his arm into the air, siphoning all the light he could into his body. He pulled back his fist and channeled all of the energy into it. He cried, “Infinity Limit!” as he thrust his arm forward. A massive dragon made of white light surged forward from his fist, diving right for Necrid and her would-be bodyguards. The creatures clustered closer to Necrid, but it was pointless. Just before it collided with them, the dragons form split into six points of light. They dove downward piercing the creatures through their heads like spears. The creatures shattered leaving Necrid exposed and alone. Dinova dove towards her, hoping to catch her, Necrid had other plans however. With a sweep of her arm, she disappeared in a flurry of shadows, leaving Dinova behind on the ground. He turned to take off again and search for her, but just as he spread his wings again his armor simply shattered.

He was left standing in nothing more than his street clothes and he was utterly exhausted. Fatigue like nothing he’d ever felt slammed onto his body. His muscles ached, his breathing came harder, his thoughts were cloudy and he felt like he couldn’t stand. He tried to take a step forward, but stumbled and fell, blacking out.

***

Drake woke up the next day on a bed in a nice hotel room. Apparently, one of the creatures’ hosts, whom had been aware while under its control, had seen Dinova revert back to Drake and fall unconscious. Wanting to thank their rescuer, they rented the hotel room in order to give him time to recover. Drake thanked the person, but was wary at first. The creature controlling this person may have been made dormant by his attacks, but there was nothing to stop it from reawakening and attacking him. As he thought this, Solaris appeared round his shoulders and said, “There is no need to worry about that.”

Confused Drake asked mentally, “What do you mean?”

Solaris’ voice seemed to be laughing in Drake’s head. “Didn’t you notice during the battle? The Celestial Beasts we fought, specifically the dozen that you defeated in Infinity Form, their power didn’t just retreat when they were defeated. It vanished.”

Drake was still unclear, “What do you-”

“They were destroyed and while leaving their hosts intact as well.” Solaris said, something akin to interest on his voice.

Drake couldn’t believe his ears. He had always fought those things knowing that he was just suppressing them. In cases like Necrid and Angela, he could barely do that. Infinity Form allowed him to do the impossible, though. He could rend a host from a Celestial beast’s control without harming them. He had done it, he had found a way to free Angela and fix his mistake. He wouldn’t be a failure anymore. As he thought it, he could almost feel Angela berate him, ‘You never failed! You always fought to keep me and others safe. Now you have a way to finish that fight, nothing more!’
Drake smiled, ‘A way to finish the fight…’ He looked out through a window that looked out over the skyline. He looked at the sunset, a hard look coming across his face, ‘Your time is up Necrid. I will free Angela.’
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