"Of glory and of death, both have honor, only one has options."
-~Nathan Ducaine, Blade Founder.
The night was one of the darkest the vast and frozen desert had ever seen. It was the kind of darkness that crept into your bones and held you in a bitter, frightening embrace. As the icy wind swirled about the frozen sands of the Puckoda desert the blackness only seemed to deepen. Not a creature would be out on a night like this thought Bartak, smiling to himself. No one would be stupid enough. The tall, crimson Saurian sighed and leaned against his massive metal gun. He was very glad of this fact, though he would never let that fact slip to his comrades. That would make him would appear weak, and the last thing the Saurian wanted to seem was weak. They killed for less than that in the armies lately. And Bartak wanted to live, and to keep his newly acquired position as main guard of this outpost.
The lizard adjusted his position slightly causing his heavy armor to rattle against the stone wall of the outpost. It was going to be a boring night though, with no one to talk to the hours would drag by. But -he consoled himself- there were more important things going on here than his boredom. There were important guests in the compound below him. Dignitaries and generals, and though Bartak didn't know why, he was certain that something big was a foot for the Saurian empire.
Yes, surveillance was impossible on a dark night like this, but for the 3 drakes who were crouched on the frozen hill, direct sight didn't matter.
"Can you get a reading on it?" Cole asked the blond drake next to him.
Crash raised his head and focused his attention on Cole. "You're not serious are you?" The blond sighed and shook his head, "haven't you learned yet, there isn't a system in existence that I can't get by." Crash then went back to typing on his wrist com.
Cole smirked, "well excuse me all to hell."
Crash's wrist communicator made a faint bleeping sound, then a soft buzz. He looked up at the 2 males with him, an evil look crossing his young face, "we're in."
Diamond, Crash, and Cole made their way down the steep embankment towards the outpost. They were going to attempt to make a raid on the small Saurian camp and remove a few lizards from the gene pool. All 3 were looking forward to a little stress relief, not to mention some useful Saurian supplies and a little action.
They covered the ground between them and the outpost in no time and soon were situated near the large stonewall that surrounded the Saurian camp. The chilled air blew through their feathers, but none noticed. Their adrenaline was pumping far too high for the cold to make a difference.
The ducks operated in perfect stealth. One taking point, another cracking the alarms and security features, and the last brining up the rear. Pure clock work. They had done many raids like this before, mostly for fun. Even on a black night like this, Saurian outposts were hardly much of a challenge. After the war, the lizards had become sloppy, and were lacking in class or any real high technology. So when the alarm blared shrilly from out of no where it surprised all 3 of the mallards.
They were in the process of a sneaky entrance, and just about to open one of the unguarded doors when the sound rang out across the night sky. Loud. Grating. Their cover was blown.
"How the hel..." Diamond never got a chance to finish his sentence, for at that moment 20 massive Saurian guards and soldiers burst forth from the door. A very tall, crimson lizard pulled out his massive gun and prepared to fire.
They had been gone way too long. It had been 6 days and Diamond, Crash and Cole were no where to be found. Of course that didn't mean anyone stopped looking. Blade members were picking PuckWorld clean looking for their teammates. They had gone through every cop-shop and crime organization in existence and come up short. The remaining options were nonexistent, but then the trouble wasn't the effort. Not by a long shot. The trouble was that fact that no one knew where to look. Neither of the 3 missing ducks had left a location, a note, or anything telling where they had gone. It seemed as though they vanished off the face of the planet. Oz had even been using all of BriceCorp's intergalactic resources to attempt to locate them. So far, nothing. Anger and distress were consuming the Blade.
Everyone was worried, but none so much as Truth Orchidbay. Diamond was her husband, her best friend and she felt lost without him. She had tried so hard to find him, even using the powers of her healing and attempting to use the strength of her order of priestesses to locate him. Her work, however, was in vain. So the beautiful healer had spent the past few days in misery with out her beloved husband.
Today was no exception. She and Dagger sat in one of the many illusion rooms located in the Blade head Quarters. Though the surroundings were lush, beautiful and at peace the two women were not.
"You gonna be alright girl?" Dagger asked looking at Truth. Dagger was concerned for her trainer and wanted to help her, if she was able.
"I...I...have not been with out Diamond for so long, I feel as though I am missing something."
Dagger placed her hand over Truth's and smiled a reassuring smile. "You'll be alright, Truth, so will he." There was sympathy in her eyes.
Truth nodded and tried to smile. She appreciated Dagger being there for her, but she knew Diamond was not alright. There was almost a link between them, and from that link she felt danger and a fear that was unable to be spoken.
Cole sat in the small cell and attempted to clear his head. The battle with the Saurians had been hard and in the end, pointless. The lizards were too many, and too strong for the 3 ducks to face on their own. They had been unprepared.
During the fight Cole had attempted to contact Oz and call for back up but never even got a chance to reach his com-link before he was up to his eyeballs in angry lizards. He had saw Crash and Diamond across the yard of the outpost. They had been having the same problems that he was. The yard had continued to fill up with Saurians. For everyone that he shoved his blade through, two more seemed to come out of no where. After that he could not remeber much.
He glanced around the small holding cell disgustedly. He had not only been captured by lizards, but now he was being held in a dirty, smelly holding cell. The room was dark and the walls were made out of thick, gray stone. The place was obviously old.
The cell held no bed or bathroom facilities, just walls and bars. The drake shuddered, he hated being locked up. But at least in prison he could see some signs of life through the bars. Through these bars Cole could see nothing but a large stone wall the led in 2 directions. He had no clue as to what level he was on, but by the small droplets of water forming on the walls he guessed he was pretty low.
Cole stretched and folded his hands behind his head. "How deep are we, rookie?"
Crash stopped studying his surroundings and looked at Cole. "Hard to tell," he said running his hands over the wall, "I would guess at maybe, 4 or 5 stories below ground."
Cole had not expected the place to be that deep. The place seemed so much smaller on the surface. Then again he had not expected the million Suarians who had attacked him either..
"That's not what worries me," Crash paced back and forth waiting until he had Cole's full attention before he continued. "Based on what I know about Saurian design, most outposts like this one only go down about 1 or 2 stories."
"Why is this one so deep?" Cole was not sure what Crash was getting at, but it was starting to make him a little edgy.
Crash continued in a matter of fact tone, "That's just what I was thinking about. Judging by what I've read, places of Saurian make, that go down this deep are not out posts, but rather military bases."
Coles eyes snapped open and he flew to his feet "do you mean to tell me, that we are being held in a military base?!" His voice echoed of the stone wall making the prison seem even more eerie.
Crash looked up to the small cracks in the ceiling, "looks like it."
"Did I hear you right, kid?" Diamond asked from his place on the floor. He had been passed out, but had awakened in time to hear the last bits of Crash and Cole's conversation.
Crash only nodded and continued to study the room.
Diamond stood up and stretched his aching, bruised muscles. "Well this is a new mess we've gotten into, isn't it?"
No one answered him, for it was then that all 3 drakes heard a clanking sound coming towards them. It was the sound of Saurian armor, all three of them knew it well.
"Looks like this is about to get a whole lot more interesting." Crash narrowed his eyes at the bars and waited for the lizard to appear.
To their shock a tall female Saurain stepped out from the shadows of the hallway and stood in front of the dark cell. Every inch of her slender frame was muscled and strong. Unlike most of her race, her color was not red, but a deep blue, and her hair which she wore in a long braid down her back was teal.
The woman's eyes flashed fire as she glared menacingly at the beaten prisoners. Though she didn't speak at first, her eyes said volumes. Just her look said that she would kill them without blinking an eyelash. She looked the essence of evil, curling her lips into a deep snarl.
When at last the Saurian spoke her voice was lethal, and deadly. "I am Vasara," she began, "daughter of high lord Dragonas and heir to the throne of Falnamar." She folded her arms across her chest and continued. "You," "are going to pay for this insolence, ducks. My father will see to that!"
Continued in part 3