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Chapter Five

Outside Phoenix, Arizona

“Another year gone,” said a young woman. “…and no success.”

The woman, known as Julia Chang, sighed to herself as she leaned back into her chair and stared at the computer, which contained data for her project to rejuvenate the forests. She had just finished her second year at college and since she started, she has been working on this project. Last year, the project failed because of the environment in Arizona. This year, they attempted to rejuvenate in the Northern area, but nothing has changed.

While leaning back into her chair, Julia slightly turned her head over to the television, which was turned on. It was the middle of the night and it was playing a repeat of the First Annual Women’s Tournament, which premiered yesterday in the states. On it was one of the fighters known as Rainbow Mika, the winner of the tournament. The television showed her excitement of her win and receiving the prize money.

That was an interesting tournament, Julia thought to herself while adjusting her red glasses.

Julia leaned forward again and stared at her computer. She studied more of the forest data, hoping to somehow discover a theory she hadn’t thought about, but it was to no avail. Before she knew it, however, Julia had fallen asleep right there in front of her computer…

She found herself walking through a forest area. Despite all the leaves, the bright sun managed to shine down on to the ground. The moths and butterflies flew around happily and the sounds of chirping birds were heard.

Julia looked through the environment cheerfully. She was wearing a brown leather sleeveless top over a green tank-top showing off her slim abdomen, matching leather gloves, short blue jeans shirt held up by a brown belt buckle, brown leather boots over long white socks, and her long dark hair was down in two braids in the back held by different colored ties. Around her head was a purple and red headband with a pair of white and black feathers indicating her Indian background.

Everything seemed as though they should be and the young woman was enjoying every minute of it. Then, she turned her head and saw a figure standing by a large tree. She was dressed in similar clothes, but her hair was tied back in one short braid. The figure was of both Indian and Asian descendent. Even with the happiness around them, the lone person showed sadness within her face.

Julia’s heart broke at that moment. Not only did it shock her to see the sadness in such a happy place, but she also recognized the person.

Before she could call out to her, however, darkness filled Julia’s world…

Julia woke up with a small gasp and threw herself back a bit into the chair she was sitting on. Her red glasses were crooked on her face and she immediately adjusted them once she was aware that she was back in the computer room.

“It was just a dream…” she said to herself. She shifted her eyes a bit and saw two envelopes stapled together next to the keyboard, both with her name on it. Julia picked it up in confusion. “That wasn’t there before…” She looked around the room, knowing that someone had entered the house, but even it was just a minute ago, the mysterious person was long gone.

The young woman looked at the time and was a bit surprised that it was 3 in the morning. She had fallen asleep three hours ago, but it didn’t seem that long to her. She shook the thought out of her head then and opened up the letter. It was only a short letter, which wasn’t signed;

Julia-

If you want to find out the fate of your mother, come to The Blood Tournament.

Mother…’ she thought, remembering the figure that appeared in her dream. Though she wasn’t her real mother, Michele had adopted her when her own tribe abandoned her in a temple when she was just an infant. For what reason she would never know. Just two years ago, Michele had left the states to go to Japan, but never stated a reason.

She never returned.

Julia had been on a mission to search for Michele while in school, but lately there hasn’t been any leads, at least until now. The young woman placed the letter down and opened up the other envelope, which was the invitation to The Blood Tournament.

If she is there,’ Julia thought. ‘This may be my chance to find her. It’s my only lead…

She took the rest of the night off to rest. When she awoke the next morning, Julia packed her bags and began her destination to the nearest departing location, San Francisco…

Unknown Area in Japan

An army of cyborgs marched their way through what looked like a lab. It would have been a normal march had it not been for the quickened pace. They continued marching in sync.

In a dark corner, a lone green female cyborg hid where she wouldn’t be seen. She began to wonder how long this was going to last and whether or not the other cyborgs would find her.

With the technologies, why not?’ she thought to herself.

The female cyborg had no name, but she did have a codename: Matrik, the first female cyborg of the Tekunin clan. The clan’s main motives was to take over Earth starting with Japan. Strong warriors were captured and recruited as cyborgs, forced to join the side of their leader, the only one who willingly accepted his fate years ago; Sektor.

An accidental override helped Matrik develop a sense of self and knowing what was right and wrong. This happened during a download remission to strengthen her powers, by Sektor’s orders. As though on instinct, Matrik attacked those in the lab and narrowly escaped. Though she escaped, she still had a long way to go. There was still the actual hideout itself to get out of.

Matrik tried to think of herself in the meantime. She knew that she was a strong warrior who too was captured out of her own will, but that was all. As much as she tried, she couldn’t remember anything else…her family, where she lived, her childhood…even her own name…

Each cyborg had their own unique ability whether it was a possession of a weapon, a power over an element, or an inhuman ability like invisibility. Matrik had weapons, but they had proved to be quite useful in any situation.

It was at that moment that a cyborg with an ability to locate their targets easily, spotted her. “Target located,” the cyborg called out in it’s robotic tone.

To silence it, Matrik lifted her foot up to the machine’s neck and gave a kick. It looked as though she had missed, but to the machine’s dismay, it’s neck detached from it’s body, electric shocks coming out of the loose wires. Matrik kept her foot up for a moment, the saw at the bottom of her foot still running.

Because of it’s call, the other cyborgs heard and began going after Matrik. She prepared herself and fought all of the cyborgs who approached her with various punches and kicks. Once she took them all down, a lone red cyborg stood in front of her, clapping his hands in a slow rhythmic beat. If Matrik had a real face, her expression would had been emotionless.

Sektor…’ she thought.

“Very good,” Sektor said in his robotic tone. Up until Matrik freed herself, Sektor was the only cyborg who did not talk like a computer despite the tone itself. “I knew that I would make you the best. Unfortunately, it’s such a waste considering your betrayal to the clan. You are now targeted for death.”

Matrik wasted no time. She quickly put her right hand out as a small compartment opened up on her palm. Quickly, about five small golden balls flew after Sektor as though they were attached to him. Sektor knew exactly what they were and quickly made a run for it until they exploded in the air.

Sektor quickly turned around, a compartment opening up on his chest. Two rows of six missiles were shown and he began shooting them at Matrik without hesitation. Matrik also made a run for it until she heard the sixth missile explode.

After sometime, the debris cleared. Matrik and Sektor only stood there, looking at each other, waiting for the other to make a move.

Then, to Matrik’s surprise, Sektor spoke. “This can wait, I have no time for this. If you still want to kill me, however, meet me in Outworld where the Blood Tournament will take place.” With that, he teleported out of the room and disappeared.

Damn!’ Matrik thought pissed. ‘The fight didn’t even start and he leaves.

Matrik knew though that Sektor received an invitation to a tournament in Outworld, a world she had heard of many times. A boat was to leave from Hong Kong in a few days, that she only knew.

Perhaps he wanted another battle there…unless it’s some sort of trap…

Either way, Matrik was willing to risk it in order to freedom. And perhaps, if anything, Sektor knew something about who she really was before her capture. If it means regaining her memory, then she had no choice but to follow Sektor to the world unknown to her…


New York City, USA

The streets began to crowd with car and pedestrians as rush hour began to approach. People were busy minding their businesses and trying to rush their way back to their destinations. Though it was barely on anyone’s minds, it was the perfect time for any criminal to pickpocket.

A man in a dark brown trench coat walked down the street near Times Square, a black brief case in one hand and an emotionless look on his face. Those who were careful about pick pocket criminals stayed back from him as far as they could manage.

The man continued walking ignoring those around him. He then turned his head when he noticed construction going about. It looked as though the workers were covering yet another of the many potholes left behind by the harsh storms of last winter.

He wasn’t watching where he was going at that moment because he then bumped into something who was attempting to walk past him. A frustrated look appeared on his face as he turned his head to take a look at who was responsible. Once he got a look, he felt his breath taken away by the red-haired beauty who stood before him.

Her hazel eyes gleamed in delight and her hair, tied in two ponytails with two more strands hanging on either side of her light-toned face, swayed in the light wind that began to pick up. She wore a black strapless leather shirt, a zipper going up the middle and a short open vest with black trims. A black belt held up her red pants, two opens with three black straps shown going down to her knees on either leg. She also wore black boots with two metal rims going around them, which the man found a bit odd, but gave no other thought to it.

The man took a few more moments to look at her before smiling. “Sorry miss,” he said.

The red-haired woman only smirked. “Don’t worry about it, just watch where you’re going next time.” She gave him a wink before passing him to continue walking. The man eyed her, feeling a bit attracted to her before he too continued down the street.

When the man was completely gone, the woman lifted a hand which held a black leather wallet. She fished through it and found many hundred dollar bills and two credit cards. She took it all and tossed them aside making it look like as though the man ended up dropping his wallet. ‘Jackpot,’ she thought. ‘This guy was loaded.

Later, she reached the upper side of the city. The area seemed deserted, though many would think that. The red haired woman entered a warehouse. All of the rooms were in open space with only one single fan running. The place was quite warm despite the cool weather, but it was something the woman had adjusted to long ago.

She walked about ten feet before seeing a blur passing in front of her. The figure stopped in front of her revealing himself. A full oxygen mask covered his face with only his long black hair falling out and his deformed cheeks partly revealed. Behind his back was an oxygen tank held by a wrap around his waist with a single tube coming out of it and into his throat. He also wore a black sleeveless trench coat, a green vest, short black gloves over his bandaged hands (they went up to mid-forearm), brown pants, and black combat boots. Other than his cheeks, the only other part of his body that showed were his arms, which were covered with various scars.

The figure breathed, similar to Darth Vadar in Star Wars, but it wasn’t as deep or as loud. He looked at the woman through the small holes of his mask. “Where have you been Kira?” he asked with curiosity.

Kira smirked at him and showed him the cash and cards. “Getting paid Kabal.” She handed the money to him.

“Good,” Kabal replied. “And you came back just in time. Our master informed me this morning that we have a special mission. He said it should bring the name of The Black Dragon to everyone’s fear.”

Kira nodded. “So am I actually going to meet the master for once?”

Kabal nodded.

The young woman bent down a bit and reached for her boot. Held by the two metal rings on it was one of the two Dragon Teeth daggers she possessed. “Will we be recruiting? Killing?”

“Both actually, but that’s all he said-”

It was at that moment that a portal opened up before them. They watched as a male figure appeared before them. The two of them bowed in respect, but then the male called out. “Rise! There is no need to bow to me.”

“I apologize Havik,” Kabal replied standing up along with Kira. “I forget that you are from Konton, the Realm of Chaos.”

Havik took a couple of steps forward. Kira wasn’t sure whether or not he was grinning because the fact was that from the nose to his chin, Havik’s face was rotted off showing the skeleton portion. Other than that, the upper portion of his face was normal showing black bushy eyebrows and cold transparent eyes. He wore his black hair up in a high ponytail. His clothing consisted of an open helmet with his realm’s symbol on it, black and red garments going over his shoulders revealing most of his torso (surprisingly not rotting off) with only one sleeve on his left arm, and black finger cut short gloves. He also wore another symbol of Chaos over his chest, a red scarf hanging over his back, black pants, a long red sash, and silver boots.

“Your mission is in Outworld,” Havik began his statement. Despite being from a realm filled with Chaos, he spoke in a well-mannered, soft spoken voice. “There will be a tournament taking place called The Blood Tournament. Rumor has it that Chishio No Me, the Bloody Eye medallion, has been found after many years of disappearance.”

Kabal looked up with interest. “The most powerful artifact in the universe…”

“Exactly,” Havik replied. “Whatever Outworld will do with the artifact is none of our concern. Our only concern for this mission is to take the medallion for ourselves. We will rule the universe bring chaos and the name of The Black Dragon clan to everyone’s knees. Just imagine what we can do with it…having all that unlimited power.”

“We will get more recruits,” said Kira. “They would want this power. The Black Dragon will no longer be a joke, a band of pirates. We will be better than before.”

“Indeed.” Havik looked at the both of them. “In the meantime, the closest we can get to the medallion is allying ourselves with Shao Kahn himself. He is the key to our victory. Come now, we must leave. May Chaos break the rules that bind.”

Kabal and Kira nodded. Using magic, Havik opened up a portal to Outworld and immediately went in. Without further hesitation, Kabal and Kira followed him…


Somewhere in Italy

In a small city-like area, a woman stood on the balcony leading to her apartment. Anyone who would have spotted her would immediately notice the large old-fashioned pink and white laced dress she was wearing. She also wore various gold jewelry, her wild purple hair swaying in the wind, and her matching eyes gazed into the night.

The woman was named Rose, a psychic with the power of Soul. She leaned her small framed body to the railing of her balcony, gazing up at the stars.

Each one of us has our own destiny,’ she thought to herself. ‘Each star in the sky represents a single person living in this universe. Even if we don’t know, we all have one thing in common…we all live in the same universe, together. When one passes on, the star dies as well…

Rose then saw one star disappear out of sight. Another soul had just passed on.

The temperature had dropped then and Rose decided to retire for the night. As she did, she thought about the recent events of the fall of Shadowlaw and Bison’s apparent death. Even as a psychic, she could not foresee who was responsible for the madman’s demise, but she had the feeling that another of evil had done the deed.

Who could have done that?’ she thought.

In another vision from years ago, there was a possibility that Rose was somehow related to Bison, perhaps a half brother, but it was a mysterious even she herself may never solve.

Rose shook the thoughts out of her head then and got herself into a white laced nightgown in her sleeping quarters. She undid the velvet sheets of her queen-sized bed and tucked herself in. She shut the light off on her lamp and settled herself in, letting sleep take over her…

Hours later, even as Rose shot up from her bed in cold sweat, she was still dreaming, her eyes rolled in the back of her head. In her mind, everything in the entire universe was destroyed, corpses were lying everywhere, the entire lands and skies were discolored into a dark orange, fire burned in every direction. Those still living screamed in terror believing that their own deaths were approaching.

Rose let out a gasp as her eyes rolled back to their normal places. She took the time to catch her breath and wiped the sweat off her face. The ‘dream’ still playing in the distant part of her mind, she immediately went into another room to the side covered in velvet curtains. A single chair and a crystal ball on a small table waited.

The female psychic sat down, the ball immediately glowing. Rose placed her delicate hands over the ball, not touching it, and whispered incantations. After what seemed like a long time, the vision of her ‘dream’ came back to her.

“The entire universe will be doomed,” she thought. “But by what?”

A tarot card appeared in her hand. She opened her eyes and looked at it. It was of an eye. “An artifact?”

It immediately came to her then. The eye…the sign of the artifact…a particular one came to her. “The Bloody Eye medallion…can it be? It’s been found?” She looked into the crystal ball. “Show me the medallion of all power!”

It took a while, but soon the ball showed her a light picture of the medallion, it’s tear glowing in it’s real color. Rose closed her eyes, trying to pinpoint the location, but instead, a man in a skull mask appeared before her. Rose quickly opened her eyes, her own heart jumping to her throat.

Shao Kahn! Perhaps he has the artifact.

She closed her eyes and continued to try to get more information, but to no avail. Luckily, however, she did have some knowledge of the evil Emperor, knowing that he ruled the realm of Outworld. Even so, however, there could be a possibility that he may be somewhere else…or maybe he will have the artifact in the future, she wasn’t sure.

It was then that a gust of wind was heard. Rose opened her eyes again and was surprised to see an envelope with her name on it. She slowly took it into her hands and yet another flash appeared in her mind, this time, the land of Outworld.

Upon that, she immediately opened the envelope. ‘Just what I nearly expected,’ she thought. It was an invitation to The Blood Tournament in an unknown location, but Rose already got the idea that the tournament would take place in Outworld.

Perhaps I will find more answers there. If anything, I must secure the realms…with help from others.

The closest location was San Francisco and she decided to seek those taking the ship from there. As she got herself dressed, Rose came to the conclusion that she was unsure of whether or not the fate of the realms will end in either salvation or doom despite the horrifying vision. As the sun rose up into the sky, Rose headed out, confident that she will find more information…


The Heavens

The God of Thunder Raiden saw it all happen before his eyes. Quan-Chi finding the amulet and giving it to Shao Kahn…the planning of The Blood Tournament…fighters from all over receiving invitations to the tournament.

The Bloody Eye is a dangerous artifact,’ Raiden thought. ‘It must be destroyed before doomsday approaches.

The thunder God’s platinum hair swayed in the wind under his brown cone hat, his transparent eyes glowing. With The Bloody Eye in the hands of the most powerful Emperor, the entire universe was in danger.

Many times has Raiden helped those on Earthrealm defend themselves from being taken over by Outworld and succeeded. If he could inform the other Elder Gods of the situation, perhaps they will help once again.

After some time, Raiden walked away from what he called a ‘mirror,’ part of a magic he used to see the events happening in the universe. He went inside of a temple-like structure, where the four other Gods were.

The four Gods sat in large thrones, all Gods for the four main elements…The God of Wind Fujin, the God of Water Mizu, The God of Fire Hinote, and the God of Earth Daichi.

“Lord Raiden,” spoke Daichi. “What has brought you to us?”

Raiden bowed to the four of them. “I came to inform you of an urgent situation. It seems that Quan-Chi has managed to get his hands on Chishio No Me.”

The four Elder Gods’ faces expressed their horrification. They had hoped that no one, let alone someone of evil, would never find the artifact. It had been years since it was last used by a General from the realm of Keisei who met an unfortunate fate (not death surprisingly, but one even unknown to the Elder Gods).

“Raiden,” said Mizu, her blue eyes glowing. “I know what you are planning. You want to defend Earth and get help from warriors of that realm.”

“Yess Mizu,” Raiden replied. “That is what I wish to do.”

“We cannot allow you to interfere,” said Hinote.

Raiden looked up at them in shock. “What do you mean?”

Daichi sighed to himself and looked at Raiden seriously. “We let it go the last few times you have done this, but this time we cannot interfere. Yes, it is our job to protect the universe, but it’s not our job to interfere in matters like these, only if we feel that there is real danger.”

Anger appeared on the Thunder God’s face and he clenched his fists. “This is absurd! Many of the warriors entering this tournament have no idea what may be truly going on! This is real peril and I cannot allow to stand idly by! If Chishio No Me is not destroyed, then the entire universe is doomed.”

Raiden looked at the four of them hoping that they would change their minds. With the except of Fujin, the Gods kept the same expression. Raiden knew that no matter what he said, they won’t change their minds.

“Even if it means relinquishing my status, then so be it!” With that Raiden turned on his heel and stormed out of the room. The three Gods were horrified by Raiden’s decision while Fujin watched in pity as his friend left.

Later, Raiden was getting ready to head down to Earth. It was only a couple of days before the ships from the realms would head to Outworld. Raiden stared at his prized possession, his staff, a weapon he used every time he went down to help defend Earth. But this time, however, Raiden wasn’t just defending Earth. This time, he would be defending all of mankind.

Raiden didn’t even notice when Fujin entered the room, at least until he spoke. “I wish you luck my friend.”

The wielder of Thunder turned around facing the God of Wind. A smile appeared on Raiden’s face. “Thank you my friend. I knew that you would have understood most.”

“I wish I could go,” Fujin replied. “But my duty for now is to stay here. If the other Elder Gods believe that the world will be at high stakes, I will be there.”

Raiden nodded and placed his staff in his scabbard behind his back. “The realms must stay secure. If no one can do it, who will.”

Fujin nodded in agreement. “I have a few suggestions that I discovered after the brief meeting.”

Raiden looked at him waiting for the information.

“While all the other realms have one ship leaving a dock, Earth has two due to it’s large population. Go to the one in Hong Kong. Another with the same enthusiasm as you will be heading to the one in San Francisco. I recommending joining with her and those helping her and devise a plan to defend the universe. Her name is Rose, a psychic with soul power. Seek her out and you have more of a chance against your adversaries.”

Raiden nodded. “Once again my friend, thank you. I will take your advice and meet this Rose in Outworld. With this, I believe she will be a worthy ally. Farewell.”

With that, Raiden opened up a portal to Earth. Fujin watched until he disappeared. Then, he began heading back to the temple, a bothering thought lingering in his mind…

It’s possible…this may be the end of mankind…

 

To Chapter Six

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