Flames of Chaotic Fury
Part 4: If the photo is too bright, the negative is too dark
Knuckles ran as fast as he could up the stairs for the third floor. It almost didn’t seemed real for him to finally move and fight again. After five years of prison and silence he almost went crazy, however only one thought kept him sane: he knew that if he went crazy, Sonic would mess with him about it with his usual sarcasm and he was damned if he would let that happen. Suddenly he saw a metal head rolling down the stairs, from the point where a sound of battle could be heard. He bolted upstairs, seeing a pile of smashed Chasers. Then he saw Shadow and, for the first time since he knew him, he was happy to see him “Stripes! You’re still alive!!” he yelled to be heard by Shadow, who penetrated a Chaser's chest with his hand, and grinned “I always hated that nickname…” then he tossed away the corpse and landed down, shaking hands with the echidna “New look? I dig it!” he said noticing his metal limbs “Yeah, long story…” said the Ultimate Lifeform while more robots made their way through the corpses to get through them “Mind if I tell you later?” asked the ebony hedgehog getting in battle stance “Yeah! I got some steam to blow off!” said the echidna cracking his knuckles and brawling with Shadow.
In the cell Sonic was definitely better. The wounds were completely healed, his muscles gained more and more vigor and his expression while sleeping got more relaxed. NICOLE watched over him, still running her digital hand through his quills, surprised by their softness “Energy reestablished at 95%... Soon you will be able to… Huh?” she said, noticing something weird. The expression on Sonic’s face was now more… Gloom. He looked… Scared. “Mister Sonic? Are you all right?” she asked worried but the hedgehog didn't answered as he got gloomier…
Sonic suddenly woke up, getting on his feet. He looked around: it was an immense dark space, completely empty. The hero was almost annihilated by that oppressing void then…
A violent light filled the space around him while a figure got out of it floating. Sonic recognized it, or him: Super Sonic! The golden hedgehog flew in front of him, with a sad expression almost as if what happened was his fault “H-how… How can this be? How can you be here? You are me!” the hedgehog stuttered incredulous “I've lived here since the day you were born…” he said stately “This is your mind” he added pointing at the void around them “M-my mind? But… Why is it so… Dark?” asked Sonic “You lived in the darkness for too long… To survive, your mind was starting to throw away everything you knew, focusing on what you could see which was darkness. A primary instinct pretty much everyone have…” Super explained leaving Sonic confused “Oookaaay… So... Is this some kind of dream?” asked the hero then the super form got gloomier and landed “We don't have much time… Touch me…” asked the super form in a hurry “I beg your pardon?” “You stored enough Chaos Energy to become me! Tore this place down and bring Eggman to justice! Just like old times!” He said stretching his hand to Sonic. Suddenly the air behind Sonic got colder and darkness behind him got thicker. From it emerged another figure, sitting on a black thorn throne: Dark Sonic. He got down from his throne and folded his arms with a devious grin on his face “Just like old times…”
Sonic was slightly surprised seeing him, since he didn't turned into Dark for quite some time, while Super Sonic frowned seeing him “What are you doing here?” asked the super form, badly hiding his contempt towards Dark “Hey, it's a free mind, isn't it?” he asked ironically and then he turned to Sonic “Look… Don't listen to this boy scout… Pick me! Together you and me will destroy everything! No more robots, no more prisons… No more Eggman…” proposed the dark side of Sonic “Absolutely not! We never killed and surely we won't start today! Not with Eggman!” said Super Sonic “What, afraid of the competition, boy scout?” chuckled Dark Sonic “He turns into you every time he can. I need to stretch my legs as well…” “You only want to kill!” growled Super Sonic slightly altered “You say that like it's a bad thing…” the dark form chuckled more as his dark aura grew more “You said it too: his mind is accustomed to darkness! Your methods are old! Sympathy doesn't work anymore! Shadow is right: Eggman must die for what he did to us! Choose me and it will happen…” he said stretching his hand to Sonic which, shivering, was about to accept. It looked so easy… Besides Eggman deserved that… Right? “NO!!” growled Super throwing a light arrow at Dark, who got tossed away. Sonic shrieked slightly as his golden form got in front of him, shielding him “Stay away from him, you horrifying creature!!” he grunted. Dark Sonic got up: his right shoulder, who got hit, was now gold as Super Sonic, purified. With a pained growl, Dark sonic covered his shoulder with his hand, contaminating it again “Wanna play it that way? FINE!!” he growled, shooting a dark beam on Super's chest, contaminating it “Why you little…” grunted Super, purifying himself and dashing at Dark who got ready for battle
“I'LL SHOW YOU, BULLY!!”
“BRING IT, BOY SCOUT!!”
Their punches collided with each other, generating a shock wave that threw Sonic away while the fight between the two forms started.
Meanwhile, in the real world, the evacuation was going well: Amy and the others had saved the other Mobians and they managed to get out, waiting in the prison's yard “Knuckles… Hurry up…” Amy thought entwining her hands. Suddenly Shadow and Knuckles emerged from the darkness, cheered by the other Mobians “Everything okay?” asked the black hedgehog to Amy “Y-yes… I'm… happy to know that you are alive… Where is Sonic? And Tails?” she asked looking behind him but seeing only the echidna “Oh… I almost forgot them…”Shadow huffed and contacted NICOLE “How's things?” he asked hearing an inhuman scream “What the hell? NICOLE? What's going on?” “Mister Shadow! P-please, come now! I-I don’t know what to do!” answered the AI, sounding like she was about to cry. Shadow flew back inside, after telling Amy and Knuckles to get everyone away from the prison's perimeter. Meanwhile Eggman was in the secret lab and was looking at the capsule filled with green liquid. He left on a table some clothes and a laptop with a post-it saying “To open in case of my death" then he ran at the bottom of the room and pressed a switch that revealed a next gen exoskeleton. The doctor went in and activated it “Computer, give me the parameters” “Systems operating at 120%. Ready for use” croaked a metallic voice “Good. EGGXOSKELETON 1.0 ACTIVATE!!” he growled as he turned on the metallic monstrosity.
Shadow arrived at the cell's door “I'm here. Open up!” he ordered “I… I can't…” NICOLE whined “WHAT DOES THAT MEAN? WHAT'S GOING ON IN THERE?” yelled Shadow “I-I don't know… Mister Sonic was almost fully healed… T-then he got gloomier and… And he wasn't waking up… And… And then… He started yelling and holding his head and… And… The Emeralds have something wrong! They started emitting this orange light that… Was destabilizing my digital form so I had to back away…” she explained stuttering “Orange light? I… I never heard of anything like that before…” he said worried, pulling out a device which started bipping immediately “Oh lord… NICOLE! Get out of there! NOW!” “B-but Sonic…” “IT'S AN ORDER!!” he roared then NICOLE disappeared and reappeared in front of him “What… What's going on?” asked the AI still shivering “Antimatter… The room is full of it… Such quantities had never been registered in one single room…” he said, scared for the first time in his immortal life “We need to leave” “B-but Sonic…” “Don't worry" he replied “Antimatter doesn't damage organic beings but can seriously compromise inorganic things near it. Think of what would happen if you or me stay close to it…” “…I see… But we'll be back for him, right?” asked NICOLE “Of course! But for now we'll have to wait until the antimatter radiation drops" he said dashing out. NICOLE looked at the door and flew out too.
Inside Sonic's mind, things were out of control: the two super forms fought furiously and every time their punches clashed it delivered a strong pain to Sonic, almost as if his body was pierced by a thousand needles. Sonic's original body shivered at every attack, with his eyes widened but unconscious while the two entities fought to destroy each other. Sonic's consciousness felt the pain that his real body felt but no matter how much he tried it was useless: the two super forms kept whaling and insulting each other. Suddenly Super Sonic was thrown on the ground, his body was filled of black dots that vanished immediately. He was about to fly up again when he heard a whine. He turned his head and saw Sonic reduced bad, with tears in his eyes and kept whispering “Please, stop… Please, stop…”. Dark Sonic was already charging another shot when Super yelled “STOP!!” “Huh?” asked Dark stopping “Already giving up?” “Don't be ridiculous! Look!” said Super showing the hurt Sonic “Our pointless battle is killing him!” “Battles are never pointless! Especially not this one! If you want him to stop suffering, let me take control!” laughed Dark then Super got in front of him again “I can't do that! Sorry but it's out of question!” said the golden hedgehog “THEN DIE!!” Dark growled as he dashed towards them. Super stood still, ready to counterattack, but Sonic was tired of that fight. He got up with difficulty and dashed between them shouting “STOP!!” and accidentally touched both of them at the same time.
Immediately Sonic shined of a creepy orange light that threw away the two super forms “O-OH GOSH… W-WHAT IS… AAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!” he yelled as he vanished. The two super forms got up again “This… Is not good…” Super Sonic muttered “He touched both of us? Now… What will happen?” asked Dark Sonic “He'll become… An aberration… Something… Inhuman… Absurdly strong…” “And filled of hatred and rancor…”Dark Sonic paled “ Oh Gosh… What have we done?” “I'm sorry…” “You think you're the only one? If only I hadn't been so reckless…” the dark side pitied himself. Super Sonic patted his shoulder “No reason to cry on spilled milk… Now as always… Let's see what happens…” he said brotherly to him as they vanished in the darkness again.
Sonic kept struggling like he was having an epileptic attack then he widened his eyes, got up and stood still. His mouth shifted into an angry grimace, he clenched his fists and yelled with every ounce of air in his lungs as a flaming aura surrounded him
The air moved so violently that even who wasn't in the prison heard that, making everyone gasp “What the hell?” asked Shadow, well knowing that it was too soon for him to go back in the prison “Sonic…” he asked to himself “What's wrong with you?”. Meanwhile Eggman, using a secret elevator, was going in the cell when his computer croaked “DANGER! DANGER! High levels of antimatter detected nearby!” “Antimatter? How? Gah, who cares! Activate the antimatter defenses and initiate Super mod!” ordered the doctor as the exoskeleton glowed of a golden light. The elevator finally arrived to the cell, where a thick orange fog floated around “Wow… This antimatter is so thick that it can almost be cut out…” thought the doctor, wiping away the orange clouds and looking for his enemy “Sonic? Come out to play...” he said singing. Then his sensors detected another presence in the room, far above the doctor who was at the bottom “There you are…” he said evil. Then the fog vanished in the bowl's proximity and the doctor saw something that left him slack-jawed: Sonic was there, staring at him from the bowl's border, but he had something strange, and with something Eggman meant everything! His fur was now of an orange so shiny it almost hurt his eyes, his skin was bluish, his eyes little and red on a black sclera, black gloves with claws coming out of it and black and green shoes. He gritted his teeth, showing sharp fangs which were also black. It was almost as if Sonic had turned into a negative of himself
“Sonic?” asked Dr Eggman
“No…” he said, his voice vibrated
To Be Continued