Tails the Fox
Chapter 16 - Security Tower of Terror
Stage 08 - Security Tower
2BIT: Sonic the Hedgehog and related characters are (c) SEGA and
Sonic Team. You knew that, right?
The Security Tower was just what it sounds like, a large tower, full of security! GUN troops patrolled the perimeter, and search lights would catch anything before it could approach. In the small, forested area around the tower, GUN beetles surveyed the area. There was no way to get in without being detected. One of the beetles was hovering in a lightly forested area. It searched the immediate area for movement. The tree branches shook! The beetle turned to look in the direction of the sound. Nothing. Must have been wind. Or not.
Copter burst out of the tree behind the beetle, landed on top, and smashed through the top of it with the claws of his right hand! Copter then quickly jumped off, just in time for the beetle to explode! Punchy stepped over from behind a tree. He handed Copter the glove he had removed in order to use his claws. "That's all well and good, Copter, but I thought we were in a hurry!" Punchy grumbled.
"Smashing those tin cans helps me think." Copter said. He put on his right glove again, then moved the cuff of his left glove so he could see a watch like device on his wrist. Punchy glanced at it. It looked a bit strange for a watch. "What's that for?" Punchy asked.
Copter responded, with utmost seriousness, "To keep track of the time." He then hid it under his glove again. "And you're right. We've no time for games."
"Right, so what's the plan?" Punchy replied. Copter flew up above the trees to get a look at the area. There appeared to be no easy way in. Copter dropped back down. "Security's tight..." The two glanced over at each other and gave each other evil grins. "Wanna do this the easy way?" Punchy chuckled.
"You mean no stealth? Great, let's go!"
Before they could leave, a wrongo dropped down in front of them. "What the heck?!" Copter shouted, startled by the odd creature. Punchy clenched his fist with rage. "Illusi..."
"I see you still remember me, Dark One. Not surprising. It's only been a few mere hours." Illusi said as a puff of smoke switched him with his wrongo. "I must warn you, it's not safe."
Copter made a strange face, looking like he was straining to remember something. "Do I know you?" he finally said. A wrongo popped up in front of his face. "Guess not." he sighed.
"What do you want?" Punchy growled. Illusi appeared startled by Punchy's attitude toward him. "Dark One, that's no way to talk to someone who tries to help you!"
"Help? You weren't very helpful back at the ruins!" Punchy growled, approaching Illusi as if he was about to fight him. Copter stepped between them and raised a hand to stop Punchy. "Let's hear him out. Maybe he knows something that could help us. I for one do not wish to die today!"
Illusi turned around and made a few movements with his hands. Suddenly, a blurred image of a metal door writhed in blue flames appeared in front of them. "The Chaos Emerald is located inside the vault. However, a dark force bars your path."
Punchy rolled his eyes at Illusi. "We could just put out the fire..."
Illusi waved his hands and increased the size of the illusion. "This is what's happening in there right now..." he explianed. Two GUN soldiers approached the door. One held a fire extinguisher in his hands, which he used in an attempt the douse the flames. It had no effect. The other soldier spoke, "It's not even hot..." To confirm this, the GUN soldiers reached out their hands to touch it....
What happened to the GUN soldiers is too gruesome to describe. Copter grimaced at the horrific scene, and Punchy seemed to turn even greener. Punchy could not take it, and he ran behind a tree to vomit in disgust. "A bit squeamish, are you, Punchy?" Copter said shakily. When Punchy looked back at the soldiers, all he could see were skeletons, with red lights where their eyes once were, wearing the uniforms of the two soldiers! Illusi then waved his hands to cause the illusion to vanish. "Terrible. Those soldiers have become Loskel!"
"So, touching the flames is DEFINETELY out!" Copter said, still shaken by what he had seen. "What do we do then?"
"Simple." Illusi said. "We must find the ghosts that created that Ghost Fire, and expel them from the tower. Such a flame must be powered by three spirits, so I suggest we split up and search the place." With that, Illusi snapped his fingers and vanished in smoke. "I'm already inside, Dark Ones! Get in, quickly!"
Copter and Punchy took off for the entrance of the Security Tower. Copter pulled a pair of pistols seemingly from nowhere. (how do the Sonic characters do that?!) "I detest the use of firearms, but I'm in a hurry!" Copter grumbled as they ran toward the front door. They were suddenly hit by a blinding light as the searchlights found them. Unwavering, they continued toward a small army of beetles commanded by six GUN soldiers. "Child's play!" Punchy shouted, and ran right past the beetles as they opened fire all around him! He grabbed the first GUN soldier, twisting his arm behind his back, causing him to drop his gun. Punchy grabbed the GUN, and, using the soldier as a shield, shot the other five soldiers down. Meanwhile, Copter had taken to the sky and was raining bullets down on the hapless beetles, causing a tremendous fireworks show as they exploded one by one. They finished their assault by each putting a bullet into the remaining GUN soldier. "The soldiers should live." Copter remarked. "They're wearing bulletproof uniforms."
"I know that, Copter! Don't have to state the obvious!" Punchy growled. "This means we have to get in and out before they wake up. So hurry up!"
Copter and Punchy split up and began searching for the ghosts. Easier said than done, for the whole tower was in an uproar. However, the soldiers appeared to generally ignore the experiment intruders. Copter would soon find out what was really scaring them...
Copter, after a long search, found his way into the calmer "Spy Network" center of the Security Tower. One look around, and he could see why it was so calm. The offices were completely empty! "Well, this looks like a ghost town..." Copter remarked. Suddenly, a gaseous blue creature flew out of one of the offices and approached Copter. It had a holes in its "head" representing eyes and a mouth, and two disconnected hands that flew in front of its main body. Copter fired his guns at it without thinking, wasting the last of his bullets as they passed through the gaseous creature. This action caused a slimy fluid to fall from the creature like rain until the bullets stopped, and it was now clear that the gas was "carrying" this slime! Worse, the slime that fell out took its own form as a pair of losol. The losol lunged at Copter, and he narrowly dodged the monsters. "Dang it! How can I stop this thing!?" Copter thought. He ran out of the way as the gaseous creature, a lospirit, breathed ghost fire in his direction. Copter then concentrated his energy on an attack. "I've had enough of this! Chaos Whirlwind!!" After calling the attack, a gust of chaotic energy burst forth from Copter's body and encircled the lospirit and losol. The three slime ghosts spun around in a vortex of pure chaos energy, which soon collapsed on itself, leaving only a puddle of losol in its wake. However, with the lospirit gone, the losol appeared lifeless. Copter stepped closer to make sure they were dead, and the slime suddenly seemed to evaporate into thin air. "One down, two to go." he said after shaking his head in bewilderment at what he had been fighting. "I wonder how Punchy's doing." he added, heading in the direction he thought the vault was in.
Punchy was in a large warehouse. Ghostly blue wrongos were swarming all around the room, completely surrounding him. A ghostly illusion of Illusi was hovering overhead, laughing at him. "What's wrong, Dark One? Are all these illusion wrongos causing you trouble? Only one is real. Why can't you pick out the real one? Blinded by the dark side? Eh heh heh heh!!"
Punchy looked up at the swarm of ghost wrongos. Only one was real, and according to Illusi, it was one of the ghosts fueling the Ghost Fire. All these illusions were getting on Punchy's nerves. How could he stop them? He had tried punching them, but his punches just flew right through them, accomplishing nothing. Bullets wouldn't work. How does one kill a ghost? "If only one is real," Punchy said, "why are they all exactly the same? One has to behave differently..."
Illusi let out another laugh. "Running out of time, Dark One! They're getting angry!"
At his words, lightning began shooting out from all the illusions! Punchy tried to dodge it, but he soon found himself caught in the electric onslaught! But for some reason, the shocks didn't hurt as much as Punchy would expect. "This is painful, but it doesn't feel like an army of shocks." he thought. "I must only be feeling the attack of the real one!"
Punchy realized that the pain he was feeling seemed to be coming from a particular wrongo. It seemed to be coming from a wrongo hovering near Illusi! Punchy struggled, and broke free from the attack. He then launched an attack of his own. "Chaos Avelanche!"
At Punchy's words, the floor cracked in front of him, and pieces of it broke off and were flung at the wrongos by a chaotic energy! Illusi's illusion moved out of the way as the stones passed through the wrongos. Nothing happened. The chaos-charged stones did nothing to the wrongos, and now another shock slammed Punchy from behind! Punchy was knocked over, tumbling into the hole in the ground he had created! He barely managed to grab the edge before falling over, and slowly pulled himself up. "Why didn't that work? Even ghosts can't stand up to chaos energy. Unless those wrongos aren't ghosts..."
Punchy noticed that the attack had once again come from Illusi's direction. "That's not Illusi..." he thought, "That's the ghost!" He quickly jumped past another shock attack and called for another Chaos Avelanche attack, this time directed at Illusi. Illusi was too close to the attack, and couldn't dodge! The chaos boulders hit their target, and the fake illusi morphed into a lospirit before exploding into losol slime, all over Punchy! "Eeeew! Get it off! Get it off!" Punchy shouted, shaking off the slime, which vanished before hitting the ground. The ghost wrongos also vanished at that moment, and Punchy breathed a sigh of relief. "I hope they don't ALL imitate people I know..."
Meanwhile, the real Illusi had found the final ghost at the vault. A much more transparent version of the lospirit, turquoise in color, and without hands. Its face seemed disconnected, its eyes and mouth moved freely in its cloudy form, though they mostly stayed close, and resembled a face most of the time. The face kept moving to keep up with Illusi as he circled around it. Illusi knew this creature's name. "Lospector! I should have known you were behind this!" Illusi said.
Lospector laughed tauntingly. "What's the matter, shrew-boy? I'm just having a bit of fun!"
Illusi pointed to the loskels that were still standing by the door, keeping a silent guard. Lospector looked at Illusi quizzically. "I'm a monster! What do you expect me to do to people? By the way, you know I have to do that to the Dark One."
"I forbid it!" Illusi shouted. Lospector just laughed at him. "You and what army?"
"This army!" came the voice of Punchy, followed by Copter. "I don't know what you are," Copter said, "but you're not going to get away with murdering GUN soldiers!"
Lospector laughed like this was the funniest thing he'd ever heard. "You think so? Let's see what you say when they're trying to murder YOU! Ta-ta!" With that, Lospector vanished. The loskels in GUN uniforms then cocked their rifles and began to stir.
"Well, good luck, dark ones!" Illusi said before snapping his fingers and vanishing in smoke.
"Great... You take the one on the left, I'll get the right!" Copter instructed Punchy. "Time to crack some skulls!"
To be continued...