GeneX - Soleanna Struggle
Chapter 22 - Copter To The Rescue!
Note: Sonic the Hedgehog and related characters are (c) SEGA and
Sonic Team. You knew that, right?
GeneX and related fanchars are (c) 2BIT (TheGreatGator), the author.
"I wanna fly high,
So I can reach the highest of all the heavens!
Somebody will be,
Waiting for me, so I have gotta fly higher!" - Believe in Myself, Sonic Adventure
Copter and Spiny had begun fighting. Spiny was determined to prevent Copter from saving Heather, despite knowing the truth about Whisk. "You can't stop us, Copter! It's too late! Very soon, this ship will begin to crash, taking that pathetic phoenix and anyone else still hanging around this ship with it!" he said, firing Chaos Spears at Copter rapidly! They were fighting in a hallway, where there was little room to move around, so it was impossible for Copter to avoid all the attacks. Still, he pushed himself forward, and smacked Spiny backward with his tails! Spiny quickly recovered. "Ha! Forget it, Copter! There's no way you'll beat me here! My spears will skewer you easily! And there's nowhere for you to run from them!" he snickered. "So what? Those spears don't scare me! I'll just charge right through them! Don't run away, Sonic!" Copter replied. Spiny growled furiously at being called Sonic again. "That is IT!! No more mister nice guy! I'm gonna shut you up once and for all!! Spear Storm!!!" The spikes on his back began to glow as he readied his most powerful attack. Copter looked worried at first, but then had an idea. Dozens of spears began shooting from Spiny's back, then turned in midair to go after Copter. Rather than try to dodge them, Copter thought of a better idea. "Chaos Whirlwind!!" He called forth a mighty chaotic wind, which blew with such force that the Chaos Spears were deflected and sent back towards Spiny! "...Shoot..." was all Spiny could say before all of his spears flew back at him, knocking him over! Copter took the opportunity to run past Spiny. "Sorry to leave ya so quickly, but I need to see a chameleon about a bird." he said. Suddenly, he felt himself smacked in the back and fell over! Looking behind him, he found that Spiny had already recovered! Copter scrambled to his feet as Spiny prepared to launch another attack at him. "Take this, chump!" Spiny shouted. Before he could attack, a laser was fired at his feet from behind! Spiny turned to find Alpha and Char behind him. "So, it's you again! Thanks to you, Metal Eggman took off in the ejector seat and was shot down by Sergeant Gunner's minions! You owe us five thousand rings for that robot!!" Char shouted. Spiny glared at them. "Only five thousand, eh? I think I'll try for a million this time!" he shouted. Copter didn't say a word to them, and instead took this chance to escape. "There's no time to bother with those blue buffoons! I've gotta find Heather, now!" he thought.
Heather was tied up in the engine room, guarded by Crash. Zipp had set some explosives around the engines, and was now busily setting up more explosives elsewhere. Vortex and Zeke were standing outside the engine room, chatting. Since they were alone, Crash now had the chance he'd been waiting for since Spiny explained the plan to him. He walked over to Heather, knelt down beside her, and took of his hat. "I was hoping I'd get to talk to you. H-how are you? Did you get to talk to Bucky?" he asked. Heather didn't answer. She didn't even look at him. Crash was afraid she'd be like this. He looked apologetically at her. "I guess not... Look, I know you don't want to hurt our creator. But I also know Vortex. He won't rest until you're dead. But you... You didn't mean for eleven to die... Did you?" he asked. Heather still didn't look at him. "What difference does it make? Vortex is right... I killed her... I deserve to die." she said sadly. Crash shut his eyes, letting her words sink in. "You're so sorry... That you're willing to accept the fate Vortex has chosen for you..." he whispered. For a moment, they both stood there quietly. After some thought, Crash began fiddling with the ropes binding Heather. "Wh-what are you doing?" she gasped. Crash had loosened the ropes. "There... I think you can free yourself from that, and it should fool Vortex! I don't care what anyone says. You don't deserve to die! Now, you wait here until we leave, then you get yourself out of here! If all goes well, Vortex will think you bought the farm, and you can live in peace from now on." he said quietly. Heather watched Crash as he stood up, put his hat back on, and walked away. She found his kindness quite moving. "Thank you..." she whispered. In a few moments, Vortex and Zeke wandered into the room. Heather and Crash stayed silent, trying not to let on that anything had happened. Vortex was still talking to Zeke, and didn't notice anything amiss. "All right, Zeke. There'sss an exit from the sssship right outsssside the door to thissss room. If anything goesss wrong, and we can't get to the helicopter, we will essscape through there. You will have to fly Crassssh and me to sssssafety. Ssssspiny will be fine... We're not lucky enough to losssse him." he hissed. Zeke chuckled a little. "Spiny and Zipp will outlive us all... The little blighters! Don't worry! I'll take good care of my jobs! Though I still think I should've been in charge!" the dragon said. Vortex ignored his remark. "It won't be long now... Sssssoon we will return home... Mossst of ussss!" he said, glaring at Heather.
Copter knew where he had to go. Using an image of the ship in his mind as his only guide, he began searching frantically for the engine room. "If I know Zipp, he'll go for the biggest explosion he can get! And where better to trigger such an explosion than the engines?" he'd told himself. Unfortunately, he wasn't quite the ship expert Tails was, and found it difficult to figure where the engine room was. Complicating things further was the army of Eggman's robots that were patrolling the ship. Every type of robot he'd brought to Soleanna was aboard, and seemed determined to make Copter's life miserable. "Didn't the experiments have to deal with these robots on their way through here!? WHY ARE SO MANY OF THEM LEFT!?" he shouted in frustration as he wandered into a large room filled with robots and traps. As Copter charged into the room, he quickly found himself surrounded. "Rrrrgh!! I'll never make it in time at this rate!!" he groaned, desperately trying to find a way to escape the robots without having to destroy each one. Suddenly, as things started to look grim, something blazed into the room at incredibly high speed! All Copter could make out was a blue wind, and this wind quickly dashed around the room, taking out nearly all of the robots before stopping next to Copter! "Need a hand?" said Sonic, who had managed to get onto the ship earlier thanks to Silver's assistance with time travel. Copter looked around. Sonic had taken out most of the robots, but there were still a bunch left. "If I wasn't in a hurry, I would've taken them all myself! But... I've got someone to save!" the fox said. Sonic grinned at him. "Do ya? Goin' my way, are you?" he asked. Copter shook his head. "Engine room. Certain jerks are gonna make this ship crash, with my friend in it!" he explained. Sonic turned to the robots that were approaching them. "Jerks, huh? Well, that explains the crash, I guess. Looks like we'd both better hurry! Let's go!" he said, leading the charge as he and Copter took on the remaining robots! Once they were destroyed, Sonic pointed Copter towards the engine room. "Good luck, Copter! You take good care of your friend, and I'll take care of Princess Elise!" he said before speeding off towards the ship's bridge. Copter waved to Sonic before heading for the engine room. "Thanks a lot, Sonic. I won't forget this!"
Vortex, Crash, and Zeke were all talking amongst themselves when Zipp flew into the room. "Hey, guys! I think Spiny's having some sort of trouble! He's not responding to my calls!" he said. The other experiments ignored him, and continued their conversation. This kind of thing had become a trend whenever Zipp spoke, and he was growing increasingly more frustrated by it. "Hello!! Did you guys hear me?! I SAID Spiny could be in trouble! Isn't that important to any of you!?" Still, they ignored him. Zipp fired a gun into the air, but still they paid him no heed. "Oh, I get it. Crazy old Zipp, can't ever be doing anything serious! All right, I'll fix you guys! If you all want me to blow up the bombs now, without warning, give me absolutely no sign!" Vortex turned to Zipp grumpily. "Zipp! Didn't I tell you to call me when you were done ssssetting up the bombssss?" he said. Zipp crossed his arms. "Why should I? You're all right here! Maybe if you'd stop ignoring me..." he complained. "Well, maybe if you weren't always flying around like an idiot with your guns...!!" Zeke growled in annoyance. Zipp pointed his gun at Zeke. "Idiot, eh? Let's see who the idiot is when I pull this trigger!" he shouted. Crash grabbed the gun from his hand. "You shouldn't play with guns!" he said. Zipp started fighting with Crash, trying to get his gun back. "Give me that, you thick-headed klutz!!" he shouted. Crash was too strong, and Zipp couldn't pry the gun from his hands, so he tried something else. "Eat stinger, dirtbag!!" he yelled, aiming his stinger and shooting it at Crash! The rhino avoided the stinger, and it continued flying across the room until it hit one of the bombs! It suddenly exploded, setting off a chain reaction that caused the other bombs in the room to start blowing up as well! The experiments were forced to back away from the explosions, and the ship's alarms signaled the fact that they were going to crash soon! Vortex grabbed Zipp by the collar of his jacket. "You misssserable inssssect!! Now, the sssship'ssss going to crasssh before we can get off! Or, at leasssst before Sssspiny can get off!! Imbecile!!" he yelled. Zipp looked sheepishly at Vortex. "Well, uh, at least Copter can't save her!" he said. "That's where you're wrong!" came a voice at the door. Copter had arrived!
"It's about time you let Heather go now, Vortex!" Copter said boldly. Vortex released Zipp and hissed angrily at Copter. "You have ssssome nerve! Asssssissss... Assssssissst... Errr... Helping a murderer!" he sneered. Copter shook his head. "Heather's no murderer! Experiment 11 is alive!" he shouted. Heather looked up as she heard Copter's words. "Alive? Really?" she said hopefully. Vortex raised a fist at Copter. "You're a liar! If Eleven issss alive, where isss sssshe?! Sssshe wassss burned to asssshessss, and it'sss all Ssssseven'sss fault!! And now, I count you asss an accomplice!! Zipp, sssshoot that missserable cur!!" he screeched, infuriated. Zipp grabbed his gun from Crash's hands while he was distracted by Copter and aimed at Copter's head. "This is gonna be sweet... Just stand still..." Zipp said excitedly. He pulled the trigger, but found that the gun wasn't loaded. "Hey!! I just loaded this thing before I came in! Crash, did you..." Zipp said, turning to Crash. The rhino swatted him aside, knocking him unconscious! "Now, Seven! There's no time left to wait!" he shouted. Vortex looked at Crash with shock, then turned to Heather, who had quickly freed herself from the ropes and was rushing to join Copter. "Noooo!!! Thissss can't be happening!!! Zeke, grab her!! We'll drown her oursssselvessss, and watch our foolissssh brothersss fall with the sssship!!" shouted the flustered chameleon. Zeke grinned at the suggestion. "Won't Bucky be mad if only the two of us come back?" he asked. Vortex stomped his foot on the ground impatiently. "Do it, NOW!! Or elsssse!!!" he shouted. Zeke frowned. "Crud, better do what he says... Don't want him throwing black holes at me..." he muttered, running after Heather and grabbing her before she could reach Copter! "Let me go, you big, featherless chicken! Put me down!!!" she shouted, struggling to escape Zeke's grip. Copter blocked the doorway. "You'll have to go through me first!" he warned. Zeke smiled at him. "Gladly!" The dragon charged right at Copter, knocking him aside as he blew flames at the door in the hallway, blasting it open to reveal the exit to the ship! As Zeke began to fly off the ship, Vortex quickly chased him and jumped on his back. "Farewell, Copter!! Don't worry, we'll hold Sssseven long enough for her to watch you go down with the ssship!!" he said, laughing victoriously as Zeke flew them over the water!
Crash had picked up Zipp, and was holding him in his arms like an injured child as he entered the hallway where Copter was pulling himself to his feet after Zeke knocked him down. "This doesn't look good. Too bad I can't help you, Copter. I have to get Zipp to the helicopter, and Spiny, if possible. You're welcome to come with me.... At least you can save yourself." the rhino offered. Copter ran to the exit to the ship, looking around before turning to Crash. "I came to save Heather. And if I can't, I'll die with her! One way or another, this ends here!" he insisted. Crash sighed. He knew Copter would say something like that. "Well, good luck, then! Wish me luck, too!" he said, running off towards the place where the helicopter was waiting, still carrying Zipp in his arms. Without further hesitation, Copter jumped from the Egg Carrier, spinning his tails at top speed in hopes of catching Vortex, Zeke, and Heather! Vortex laughed at Copter's efforts. "Defiant to the end! Drop Sssseven after Copter fallsss, Zeke! Maybe ssshe'll land on top of him!" he hissed. Zeke hovered in place, watching Copter. "Sorry, pal! Tails aren't built for flying! Hope you enjoy your swim! Kekekekeke!!!" he cackled. Copter realized he was right as his tails began to tire. "Can't.... give... up....!" he said, pushing himself to continue on. He began to get close, but soon started to fall. As he did, though, he heard a noise behind him. At first, he thought he was delirious, but as he looked back below himself, he saw what he'd thought he'd heard. It was a plane engine, and it was coming from the rapidly approaching Hurricane! Copter carefully used his tails to adjust his fall so he landed in the cockpit just as the plane passed under him! "Thank you, Punchy! And thank you, Eggman, for making the Hurricane remote have such a good range!" Copter said, recalling when Punchy got him to use the Hurricane remote back at Radical Train. Vortex growled loudly as he saw Copter's plane arrive. "He jusssst refussssesss to die!!! Well, we'll have the lassst laugh! Drop Sssseven, Zeke!" Without hesitation, Zeke tossed Heather downward! Copter was forced to quickly speed up the Hurricane and fly it under her, catching her on the wings of the plane! Heather wasn't as graceful as Sonic, though, and found herself clinging to the edge of the wing rather than standing on it!
Copter put the plane on autopilot while he helped Heather. "Let's switch! You fly, and I'll ride the wing! I'll take on Vortex!" he suggested. Heather grabbed Copter's hand, and he pulled her to the seat, climbing onto the wing in the process. As she sat at the controls, Heather looked below them. There was no land, only water. She looked terrified as she took the wheel of the plane. "C-copter? I don't know how to fly a plane!" she said nervously. Copter chuckled. "That's OK! Neither do I! Just try to figure out enough so we don't crash!" he said. As the two of them were getting ready, Vortex and Zeke were watching above them. "Thissss issss outrageoussss!! Why issss it sssso hard to kill them!?" Vortex groaned. Zeke scratched his head. "Maybe they're carrying rabbit feet and four leaf clovers?" he said. "That wasss a rhetorical quessstion!! Get ussss alongsssside them!! I will finissssh thossse pessstssss off mysssself!!" Vortex ordered. "Not if I finish them first! RAWR!!!" Zeke roared, flying himself towards the Hurricane! By now, the Hurricane's autopilot was off, and Heather was quickly teaching herself how to fly it. Not a moment too soon, either, for Zeke was pulling up beside them! "RAWR!! It's time to turn up the heat here! I hope you like your meat well done!!" the dragon growled, blowing fire at them! Heather quickly pulled the wheel back, causing the Hurricane to begin flying up and away from the fire! Unfortunately, the wing had caught fire! "Chaos Whirlwind!" Copter shouted, using the chaotic wind to blow out the fire! Suddenly, they heard Vortex behind them. "Chaossss Inferno!" Heather quickly turned the plane to avoid the beam as Vortex fired it at them, and Copter turned to retaliate. "I'll knock you off that dragon! Chaos Whirlwind!!" Copter yelled, sending the windy attack towards Zeke! The dragon flew out of the way, but not without being slowed down somewhat. Still, this didn't deter Vortex. He fired another Inferno attack, this time at Copter, who was forced to jump off the wing and fly over the attack! In a moment, he landed back onto the wing and tried blowing Zeke away with Chaos Whirlwind again. Just as before, Zeke dodged it.
The battle continued in this way, and as Vortex and Zeke began using their attacks together, Heather was forced to take more drastic actions to avoid them. Being new to flying, she tended to move somewhat unpredictably, but this was just as hard on Copter as it was on Vortex and Zeke! "If you keep flying like that, I'm gonna fall off!" Copter shouted. Heather turned to escape Zeke's fiery breath before responding. "This is all I can do to keep us in the air!" she said with panic. "We gotta end this, quick! Try to get us close to Zeke! Then, I can try to finish this!" Copter suggested. This was far easier said than done, since Vortex kept using Chaos Inferno and Zeke kept blowing fire, but soon, Vortex began to tire. "Blassst!! Chaosss Inferno drainsss ssso much of my energy! Enough gamesss!!! Zeke, I don't care how, get me a clear ssshot!!" he shouted. Zeke stopped blowing fire, and started chasing the Hurricane. "RAWR!! We're right behind them! Perfect!" he said, speeding up to get Vortex his shot. As they began to get close, Heather pulled back on the wheel again, causing Zeke to pass under them! Copter jumped from the wing and landed on Zeke's back, right on top of Vortex! The chameleon pushed Copter to the side, but he wouldn't be pushed off of Zeke! As they began struggling, Zeke roared in pain as every punch and kick that missed hit him! "RAWR!!!! Stop that, you maniacs! I'll drop you both!" he growled, trying to shake them off! Copter and Vortex grabbed on tight, refusing to let go! "Sssstop that, Zeke! I'll get Copter off if you sssstop that!!" he yelled. "Fine, but make it quick!" Zeke said, steadying himself again. With this one chance, Copter and Vortex each called out their attacks! "Chaos Whirlwind!!" Copter shouted! "Chaosss Inferno!!" Vortex hissed! The two attacks were launched at the same time, and both Copter and Vortex were slammed directly! They both began falling from Zeke, and the dragon was unable to catch them due to the Whirlwind attack knocking one of his wings off balance! "Vortex!!!" he shouted, watching his companion falling alongside Copter! Heather wasted no time flying the Hurricane under Copter and catching him on the wing. Vortex, though within arm's reach of the wing, chose not to grab it. "Come on! Grab hold!" Heather shouted. "I'd rather die! Either way, I can't avenge Eleven now!" Vortex growled. As he fell below the Hurricane, it seemed he was done for! "Vortex!!" Copter shouted, stunned by his stubbornness. Suddenly, as Vortex fell, something flew towards him! In a moment, it caught up and grabbed him in its arms! "Dying is for losers! You're much too good for that! Oh, let me introduce myself. I'm Whisk!" As Vortex looked up at his savior, he knew who it was instantly. "A divine.... E-experiment 11!" he gasped, fainting in her arms with relief and exhaustion...
At the edge of Kingdom Valley, Katie, Tommy, and Mia had caught up with Chet and Razor, who were watching from afar as the Egg Carrier was crashing into a cliffside. The battle between Copter and Vortex had happened on the other side of the ship, and they couldn't see what had happened. As the ship was destroyed by a huge explosion, the group had a terrible feeling of dread. "C-copter!!!" Katie shouted, devastated by the thought that Copter had died. Higher up, on a cliff above them, they heard Sonic's voice as well. "Elise!!!" Hearing that, they believed the princess was gone as well. Turning away from the wreck, the group shed a few tears for their supposedly lost friends. "They... They're gone... Aren't they?" Tommy said, sobbing. Mia tried to remain optimistic. "Well, they might've gotten off... Maybe... Who can tell from here?" she said. Looking around at all the sad faces, though, she couldn't help crying herself. "That phoenix was so pretty... It's just not fair!!" Chet shouted. Razor nodded solemnly. "It's a dark day for Soleanna... So much tragedy... The princess, too. The nation will be devastated..." he said grimly. Katie wiped away her tears and started heading back. "Katie..." Chet said, wondering what she was thinking. "If they're dead... Then it's my duty as a reporter to break the story. I don't work for the TV stations here, but I can write to the newspaper. I'll make sure the public knows of this story! And hopefully... It will never be forgotten." she said. As she started to leave, the rest of the group followed her. "We did our best... I guess Katie's idea is all that remains for us to do..." Razor said. Upon their return, she did write to the papers, and the story was saved for generations on the computers in Soleanna, until at last it reached the eyes of Tails and Punchy when they arrived in the future...
However, the report wasn't entirely true. Copter and Heather had escaped the ship on the Hurricane, while Vortex was saved by Whisk. Zeke flew himself to safety, and as the Egg Carrier began to crash, Copter spotted a GUN helicopter flying away from it. All that was left was Sonic and Elise. Sonic was rushing for the nearest exit to the ship, carrying Elise in his arms. As they reached an exit, they watched as the front of the ship broke away in front of them, leaving them a distance away from the cliff ahead. Copter and Heather watched from the Hurricane overhead. "What now, Sonic?" Copter said worriedly. As Sonic looked around for a way out of this mess, Elise pointed to pieces of the ship that were falling around the cliff. "Sonic!" she called. As Sonic looked where she was pointing and thought about what she was suggesting they do, he grinned at her. "Aren't you worried?" he asked. Elise smiled back at him. "'If you have time to worry, then run,' right?" she said, recalling what Sonic had told her before. Without further hesitation, Sonic built up some speed and jumped into the air heroically, carrying Elise as they landed on a piece of the ship ahead of them. He quickly jumped off of it towards another piece, quickly making his way towards the cliff as the ship was crashing all around them! Copter was covering his eyes with his hands now. "Oh, he's insane! He's not gonna make it!" he cried. Heather chuckled at Copter. "Open your eyes! He'll make it! Trust me! After all, you made it!" she said. As Copter uncovered his eyes, it didn't look good. Sonic had made one final leap for the cliff, but as he reached out to grab it, he found that he just wasn't high enough! As Sonic and Elise began to fall, another piece of the ship crashed into the cliff below them, and the resulting explosion catapulted Sonic and Elise back into the air, hurtling them onto the cliff! The two of them tumbled onto the grass atop the cliff, and at first, didn't move. Copter had covered his eyes again. "Open your eyes! They made it!" Heather cheered. "No way, that's impossible!" Copter muttered, uncovering his eyes. Sonic had walked over to where Elise was sprawled out on the floor, and extended his hand to help her sit up. As he did so, the two of them started laughing. "Figures he enjoyed that! What a nut!" Copter said before breaking out laughing himself, along with Heather. As Sonic and Elise stopped laughing, Sonic gave her a thumbs up. "Nice smile!" he said. At the same time, the Hurricane flew over them. "Time to get as far from the water as possible!" Heather said. "Amen to that, my friend. But I gotta admit, that Sonic's sure got guts..." Copter muttered, sitting on the edge of the Hurricane's wing. Heather chuckled at him. "You're pretty cool yourself. Thank you, Copter. For everything!" she grinned. As the Hurricane soared over the plains, leaving their troubles behind, it seemed the whole ordeal was finally over...
To be continued...