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The Lair of Godzilla [Godzilla/Everyday Life with Monster Girls] Multicross Fusion

Discussion in 'Creative Writing' started by ScriptGenius12, Feb 23, 2021.

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  1. Threadmarks: Into the Depths
    ScriptGenius12

    ScriptGenius12 Know what you're doing yet?

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    Tales of ancient gods and monsters abound in human history.

    As science and technology advanced what we knew of the world in the first half of the 20th century, those tales seemed like they would remain as myths and legends. Parts of a distant past we were moving on from.

    We know better now.

    [-]

    October 27th, 1954


    Tokyo was an inferno.

    A city of six million people, and there was nothing he could do to stop the flames that had engulfed them.

    Tanks lay knocked over and smashed to pieces. Some melted into slag alongside howitzers. At the outskirts, a massive electric fence had been torn apart and set aflame. In the distance, it was still burning.

    There were massive, four toed footprints leading from the outskirts into the city. Buildings were knocked over or gouged open in front of the path.

    Screams could be heard along with the honking of vehicles, usually followed by a squeal and a crash as they slid off the roads in their haste to escape.

    The charred skeletons of soldiers armed with explosives and guns, of fleeing men, women and children unlucky enough to be in the titan's way and who couldn't escape the fires lay blackened on the streets and roads. The charred bodies were frozen in place, some mid-run or fallen upon the ground.

    Some of those touched by the flame simply fell to ash and bone on the spot.

    There was nothing he could do.

    So, he simply kept talking into his recorder.

    Beneath the flames, thousands lie dead or dying.

    Looking away from the devastation at his vantage point in the room, he turned towards where the fires were highest. Surrounded by dust, smoke, and flame, the middle of the city was heavily obscured in the heat as the sound of falling rubble could be heard within.

    Flashes of glowing blue light could also be seen within the ashes.

    Then, he saw it again.

    A long, black tail with thick scales and white bladed plates atop it swung through the cloud of ash and fire, sending glass and metal into the air.

    A black claw gripped the side of the Diet building, talons gleaming.

    Two blazing orange eyes turned to glare ahead in the storm of smoke and fire, and for a moment he almost felt them boring into him.

    A dark maw opened, exposing massive fangs.

    A roar like that of thunder bursts forwards.

    It is a sound that will define the decade.

    Now it seems Tokyo-


    [-]

    October 30th, 1954

    -
    Has no defense.

    Lost in his memories, Steve Martin was pulled from his haze, his bandaged head pounding as he stood aboard a white ship, other men crowded around him.

    Shaking his head, he looked forwards as he remembered where he was.

    The building collapsing. A prayer for peace. Serizawa. Oxygen Destroyer.

    Ogata had been pulled aboard in his diving suit, and in the water, Martin could see bubbles rising and writhing at the surface as the ocean churned. Still disoriented from his head trauma, Martin stared ahead.

    With a crackling tone, he heard Serizawa's voice shouting out, "Ogata! It is working!" as the waters in front of them violently boiled and bubbled.

    Then, the last thing he would ever say.

    "I hope you two will be happy. Farewell!"

    A frantic attempt to pull Serizawa up only brought a freshly cut line to surface. He could imagine Serizawa taking a knife to it under the water.

    As the ocean waves boiled, Hell came up with a roar of agony.


    Godzilla.



    Rivers of seawater spilled down his pitch-black scales. The armored bone plates on his back looked as impenetrable as the muscles on his charcoal-colored flesh. Red patches of radiation on his arms and chest glowed brightly with the thermonuclear light flashing on his dorsal plates, as though every cell in his body was fighting against Serizawa's invention.

    Shaking his head from side to side as he let loose another roar of pain, Godzilla towered over the ship even as the device began ate away at him. Emiko and Ogata held each other as the others yelled in fright.

    Not Martin. Still dizzy, he glared up at the massive black shape. Godzilla bared his teeth, leaning towards the boat with a shaking claw outstretched.


    In that moment, both the reporter and the monster met each other's gaze.


    With another cry of pain or rage, Godzilla fell back, his fall forming a wave that rocked the boat he began to sink below the seething waters.

    Before Martin's eyes, amidst screams of horror and awe, Godzilla's flesh began to steam as Serizawa's invention did it's work.

    Then he was under the sea once more.

    In agony as bone began to show on his torso and arms, Godzilla thrashed and let out a rumbling scream under the waves, blasts of heated water boiling from his mouth and hitting the seafloor around him.

    Giant eruptions disturbed sand and sediment began to spread around from the wild movement, obscuring his form within the churning waters.

    The seafloor shook, collapsing in Godzilla's panicked struggles. The ground split open as Godzilla fell into the chasm he had created in his latest act of violence.

    One bony hand reached out through the burst of bubbling water, charcoal flesh dissolving off of it before the hand disappeared into the swirling debris collapsing into the trench.

    [-]

    Under the waves, his oxygen supply cut, a man in a diving suit looked forwards, expression blank as he sunk with the breaking seafloor.

    This was it.

    That thought was what kept him composed, even serene as he found himself between the falling stones and the thrashing titan that dwarfed him utterly.

    A glowing orange eye looking right at him in the turmoil. It narrowed as he gazed into it with the intelligence and recognition of something ancient and angry.

    He had little control of his body as the chaotic currents sent him drifting towards the opening jaws of the beast. Time seemed to slow down in the moments he had left.

    He thought of his life up to this point and what he was leaving behind.

    It was acceptable. Even his regrets.

    Closing his remaining eye, Daisuke Serizawa accepted his fate.


    Godzilla's skeletal jaws snapped shut around the creator of the Oxygen Destroyer.


    Together, man and monster sunk into the depths.

    [-]

    There was crying all around, but, however hollow, a sense of triumph. Emiko and Ogata stood together, sobbing in sorrow. That boy from Odo Island, Shinkichi, silently stood and looked down into the calming sea, deep in thought.

    Yamane also stood nearby, a grim expression on his face. "There will be another," he whispered.

    Martin also watched, contemplating to himself.

    Whatever happened, one thing was certain.

    The menace was gone, and so was a great man.

    Perhaps now, the world could finally wake up and live again.


    [-]

    After that day in Tokyo Bay, we thought it was over. That Godzilla was a fluke, a product of the Atomic Era. That nothing else like it could exist again.

    We could not have been more wrong.

    [-]

    April 23rd, 1956


    The newly formed trench practically glowed with radiation, even at night. Large buoys at the surface warned away any who would approach. Given how the radiation did not affect anything beyond the spot where it glowed, perhaps due to a unique combination of the power unleashed by Serizawa's invention and Godzilla's leaking energies on that day, trade by sea was not completely halted.

    Boats kept their distance from this spot regardless. It would be years until there could be any excavation of bones that, to the scientific community, may not exist.

    Those who hoped the pit would remain forever silent would have their hopes dashed.

    A groaning creak rumbled within the trench.

    There was a flash of light, and then a saggy grey claw grabbed onto a cliffside in the trench, cracks forming on the stone as it held on.

    Bone was visible on the areas not covered by the thin, slowly generating grey skin. Red veins on the joints signaled the slow regrowth of muscle.

    A single orange eye shined from within the trench as the creature within began to pull itself out.

    Orbs of water floated towards the surface as Godzilla exhaled with an intact throat for the first time in two years.

    [-]

    Not long after Godzilla's first rampage, we learned that he was just the beginning.

    Red wings unfurled over the Philippines as Rodan emerged from a dormant volcano near Albay.

    From recently opened mines in Brazil, man eating insects resembling wingless dragonflies poured out by the dozens into the nearby city of Rio, devouring everything they could grab.

    In China, Mao Zedong was among the many casualties eaten alive by the flying monster Varan after it rose from its slumber under a lake. The chairman's death fractured China into city states, an arrangement whose consequences carry on to this day.

    In Texas, nuclear tests carried out in a desert at another state years ago spawned a burrowing giant scorpion and venomous lizard who fought their way through the wilderness.


    By the sixties, more and more of these titanic monsters began to show up every year.

    Mothra made her debut defending her distant island from trespassers, leaving ships dead in the water while knocking missiles out of the air.

    The advent of burrowing titans like Gorosaurus and Baragon meant that staying away from the sea wasn't enough. No place seemed truly safe in this new Age of Monsters.

    The emergence of the biogeologic Taligon from a meteor would be a small taste of what was to come compared to what Mechagodzilla's invasion would imply about life beyond our world.


    On and on, more of these giant beasts have appeared with every decade.

    Many names have been given to these creatures.

    Some call then Titans. Others label them as Giants.

    But to most, they are officially known as Kaiju.

    And after the initial surge of Kaiju attacks, as world politics and landscapes were redrawn, some wondered if it could get any worse.

    They were proven right.

    [-]

    October 30, 1961

    Novaya Zemyla, Russia


    From a distance, one could mistake the white dorsal spines for a coral reef.

    He was basically skin and bones. Godzilla only had that moment of sheer determination that let him pull his ravaged body from the sea floor where the weapon had harmed him.

    Now it was base instinct and coincidence that let his dormant, weakened body drift with the currents. Coincidence that took him across these waters.

    Coincidence, and perhaps something more that his body had not been found as it drifted through the Sukhoy Nos Cape-

    Suddenly, there was light and then heat.

    -the testing site of the Tsar Bomba.

    A fifty-megaton nuclear explosion, one unsurpassed since then.

    Thermonuclear flame and air blasted outwards. Godzilla's skeletal frame sunk beneath the boiling waters as the energy released by the bomb boiled and burned everything above and below the sea.

    Then, in the chaotic waters and winds born from the explosion, there was light.

    Blue thermonuclear power flashed from below as Godzilla rose from the water with a tremendous roar, red and purple flame blazing across his body as flesh rapidly regenerated. His dorsal plates creaked as they began to spread out to accommodate his growing form.

    Veins glowing blue as spines flashed with blinding light, Godzilla tilted his head back, his dark jaws opening wide as white fire burst out.

    The fire quickly changed to bright azure heat as the wild flames became a solid beam that split the clouds above it.

    As long as breath came from his mouth, he would keep on moving.

    [-]

    He returned.

    And from then on, the world was never the same.

    [-]

    April 24th, 1963

    Osaka, Japan.


    In the city of Osaka, an eerily familiar scene repeated itself.

    People ran through the streets, men in military uniforms leading people into large jeeps during a mass evacuation. Ash and flames reflected off a mix of modern and wooden architecture. Tanks lay upturned or crushed, a plane or two grounded and missing a wing, smoke sputtering from the engines.

    The beast responsible was a massive chitinous kaiju with a segmented black body. Hooked brown legs wriggled down its length, mandibles clicking as it swept its red, ten eyed glowing gaze away from the pagoda it had wrapped itself around.

    Vishnu

    First spotted in Mongolia, what lead the giant centipede here is only known to its bestial instincts.

    Turning its head around, it swept its view towards a fleeing crowd who had yet to reach the main evacuation lines, close to another pagoda on the outskirts of the city.

    More than a few of them had old burns under their clothing. Scars of a previous event they had survived.

    Crawling down from the pagoda, Vishnu crawled over to and then idly rose above the panicking humans, jaws opening.

    Pincers widening further, Vishnu's head thrust downwards.

    Just as the centipede lunged, a blackened boulder flew through the air in the direction of its face.

    Impacting with its left eyes, the boulder burst open and fell to the ground a shower of dust.

    Vishnu fell to the side mere feet from the nearest humans due to the force of the blow. The creature shook its head from side to side before rapidly leaning back up, a small rain of yellow blood falling off the left side of its head as it twisted upwards, crowd forgotten.

    The situation rapidly deteriorated when the second monster revealed himself.


    A massive scaly foot slammed down onto the earth, trees in a nearby park shaking and cracking around it as Godzilla strode forwards, gravel falling from the claw that he had used to throw the boulder.


    Orange eyes blazed as a growl built in the back of his throat.

    The crowd had stopped running, hiding behind trees now.

    Those watching from nearby hills miles away after having evacuated turned and paused.

    People still in the city on rooftops stopped in their tracks.

    They all had one thing in common:

    Utter silence when they realized just who they were looking at.

    Vishnu's antenna twitched before it reared up, legs rattling as it stared the other kaiju down.

    Stomping his foot down and sending dust and dirt into the air, Godzilla leaned his body forwards and answered the challenge with a roar that cut the winds.

    The fight was on.

    Godzilla charged forward, claws outstretched while the giant insect held up its bladed legs likes like an army of spears.

    They collided with a shockwave of power that brought dust and leaves into the air.

    Grabbing onto its carapace, Godzilla began to push Vishnu back, lifting it off the ground while digging into its hide with his sharp claws.

    The centipede's legs stabbed at Godzilla's hide, sparks flying off each time they hit.

    Godzilla kept moving forwards.

    From where it was being held, Vishnu lunged forwards, mandibles outstretched as it aimed for Godzilla's head.


    A meaty crunch rang across the area.


    Vishnu pulled back rapidly from the grapple, yellow blood pouring down the right side of its face where a large mandible used to be.

    Spitting the broken appendage out, Godzilla promptly grabbed Vishnu by the legs before slamming a fist under its maw. The uppercut sent a splash of yellow blood out of its mouth as it fell back onto the pagoda it had been lounging on.

    As Vishnu writhed on top of the cracking, groaning building, it moved its head back to look forwards.

    Just in time for Godzilla's scaly mass to slam into the armored chest under its head.

    Unable to recover in time, the insect flailed as it fell through the pagoda, collapsing it in a shower of dust and wood.

    Vishnu stumbled back then collapsed to its left, slamming it's bleeding head through a nearby office before it's shelled body rolled back twice to get into position.

    It quickly straightened itself, backing away as it began to rise, rattling its legs and curling its lower half like a corned rattlesnake. Godzilla stepped forwards through the fallen pagoda, glaring ahead and exposing his fangs as his dorsal spines lit up, flashing brightly.

    Those still in the city stood rigid in place, either in streets, vehicles, or from within alleyways and behind windows as they watched the spectacle. Those who had witnessed the events of 1954 quickly covered their eyes, knowing what was about to happen.

    Godzilla's throat flashed as a lance of thermonuclear fire shot from his mouth, hitting Vishnu dead center in the torso.

    The beam burst through the centipede's armored back in an explosion of chitin and fire.

    Godzilla closed his jaws, blue fire blowing out from between his teeth.

    Vishnu wobbled from side to side, yellow blood dripping out of the hole in its torso.

    The red eyes in Vishnu's head dimmed as its upper half creaked and split open.

    Hanging from a cord, the centipedes head fell off to the street below with a snap, the rest of the blackened corpse following suit.

    Godzilla opened his maw and fired off another blast of nuclear energy, setting the corpse on fire.

    Marching forwards, Godzilla crushed the burning head of the insect underfoot before sweeping his gaze to the rest of the city.

    Fires could be seen nearby, across buildings and on the ground. In the distance, a low rumble and drone heralded the new approach of tanks and planes.

    Eyes narrowed, Godzilla seemed to grin before tilting his head and unleashing an earthshaking howl.



    The Age of Monsters had truly begun.

    [-]

    When Godzilla returned, political landscapes and military strategy were reshaped once more. His presence alone seemed to herald not only an increase in new monsters, but in kaiju on kaiju combat.

    That is not getting into the other revelations of this past century, with the discovery of the sunken continent of Mu and its ancient technologies, incursions by new types of extraterrestrial lifeforms, and the discovery of distant islandic and underground ecosystems containing thought to be extinct Mesozoic wildlife.

    However, one of the most important incidents in recent memory occurred less than a decade ago when world governments revealed the existence of Liminal's to the public in May of 2007.

    The additional reveal of the existence of magic was another surprise, but that issue is a whole other can of tuna that does not need to be opened now.

    Sometimes called Youkai, Extraspecies, or Demihumans, these humanoid entities had been in hiding for centuries before major developments such as improved technology and human expansion reduced the effectiveness of their "Masquerade" amongst other factors.

    Lauded as the greatest civil rights event of the century, integration has begun to prove surprisingly easier than expected considering past racial issues. However, words from people like famed journalist Franklin West say it best:

    "When you've seen all the monsters we've had to deal with since the first bombs were dropped, a few tails or ears on other people doesn't even feel worth the concern."

    This leads to another issue, as recent events and historical documentation shown at the start of the cultural exchanges has arguably revealed the chief reason for why the "Masquerade" had to be broken.

    It was the same reason for much of the upheaval of the past half-century: The Age of Monsters.

    The first inciting incident would be in March of 1977 when three kaiju attacks happened on the same day worldwide.

    This incursion occurred in Kyoto, where Zilla, last seen in 1975 during the Ghana Incident, came ashore in Japan, an event that coincided with the sudden appearance of the titanic vulpine known as Tamamo in Kyoto.

    The ensuing territorial battle was fierce and drove many local hidden Youkai out of their homes due to the immense destruction. The fleeing Youkai were witnessed by multiple civilians and military personnel during the night, and by the end of the year most Youkai and other Extraspecies began contacting human governments to work on the breaking of the "Masquerade" and to find asylum for their species as encroaching kaiju became more and more of the threat to the secret factions of the world.

    These attacks have increased in frequency with every decade. Reports of incidents occurring in the past and present are being declassified every month.

    [-]

    Aquatic kaiju like Gaira and Barugaron preying upon nomadic Merfolk races in the early decades after their first emergence.

    An Atlantic Mer city being devastated by a battle between Titanosaurus and the Atlantic Scourge in the early 90's.

    A hidden Sylphoid and Lamia village being attacked by a pack of three young Skullcrawlers, ones previously believed to be native to Mondo Island.

    An underground Dryad settlement burned by a pyroclastic flow, one unleashed by the burrowing activities of the giant salamander known as Urogora a year ago.


    [-]

    Notably, tunnels dug by ancient Youkai in the Nara and Osaka regions provided a source of shelter to many refugees during the disastrous events of 1995.

    It would be accurate to say that normal humans, extraspecies, and kaiju have all equally affected their shared history.

    In summarization, since then, the Age of Monsters has shown no sign of stopping, and events from decades ago still reverberate from then on. The Biollante Forest has yet to halt its spread in the Middle East since its birth in 1989. More about Mu is being discovered every year. And that's not even getting into the recent leaks from the Monarch organization. No matter what happens, we are not alone in this struggle.

    [-]

    TO:
    ksmith

    SUB: Essay

    Dear Aunt Smith,

    I've recently finished an essay on recent events for my history class, I was wondering if you could maybe please look it over for me for any errors since you know a lot about this stuff?

    Thx.

    Sincerely,

    N. Smith.


    A woman with long dark hair groaned as she blinked at the message that had just arrived in her Inbox.

    Sitting in an office, bundled in a blanket, she sighed and promptly looked away from the computer at her desk and got off her chair. She fell down onto a nearby mattress, dropping her glasses onto a stand nearby.


    "It's Midnight in Saitama at this time of year…I have things to sign…. I'll look at it another day…urgh." Kuroko Smith groaned as she finally fell asleep.

    [-]

    Old Tokyo Quarantine Zone

    December 6th, 2013


    Under the moonlight, mist surrounded the charred remains of what was once Tokyo. Long abandoned after 1995, cooling magma rivers could be seen across streets and craters. Much of the west side of Japan looked like this, albeit not as severe. Some cities like Osaka were already being restored to habitable conditions.

    Tokyo was still the same. The fallen metropolis, overgrown with glowing radioactive plants and broken buildings, was left as a memorial and monument to the tragedy.

    The other reason for the lack of resettlement was the wildlife.

    Near a tipped over skyscraper under the moonlight, a glowing scorpion scuttled through long empty streets. It moved passed a fallen motorcycle, one half the size of it.

    A flash of golden eyes from a nearby window was the only warning it got before a furry dark shape pounced on it. Sharp teeth rapidly tore it to pieces.

    The massive rodent had black fur and a gaping, jutting jaw attached to a skull like that of a boar. Its body was heavily built and muscly, nearly the size of a sports car. Multiple bony growths could be seen along its body, mainly around its neck and face.

    It was a Deutalios, a rat mutated by the radioactive fallout generated by the events of that terrible year. A common K-Spawn in these parts.

    But not the top predator.

    It passed a nearby rock formation covered in bumps. As it paused to slurp down the remains of its meal, it missed the slight movement from underneath the rock.

    It was about to lift a leg to relieve itself when two mandibles shot from under the rock.

    The first stabbed through its head into its brain. The second squeezed onto its neck like a vice.

    With a crunch, the mutant rats head came off. Crab-like limbs quickly pulled the remains into its shell.

    For less than a minute, the sound of ripping and tearing was heard from underneath.

    With a sound like snapping wood, the creature straightened up, rising to around fifteen meters in height.

    Previously curled, a segmented dark tail like that of a lobster straightened out. Dozens of limbs like that of an insect or a crustacean wriggled around under what was now a green-black shell that merely looked like a large boulder. At the top, under its many limbs, two pairs of bloody mandibles opened and closed as if tasting the air.

    It was still not full.

    It was a Shockirus. A radioactive parasite, a giant sea louse that lived on larger kaiju, usually the radioactive ones. Normally the size of small children or large dogs, this individual was either an aberrant or managed to live and grow beyond its lifespan.

    The creature turned its head, alien senses triggering as it searched for more food.

    Most edible things had either gone underground in spaces beyond its reach; others had left this near life-less zone long ago. Tilting its head up, the mutant slowly turned its head to the North. Far away, it felt and sensed a great heat.


    Heat usually meant life.


    Life meant food.


    Leaning down on all its legs, it began scuttling forwards with ease over debris and bones in the direction of the Saitama Prefecture.
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2021
    Reader101, Nich, Cazertanu and 4 others like this.
  2. Threadmarks: MON vs Monster
    ScriptGenius12

    ScriptGenius12 Know what you're doing yet?

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    2:30 AM

    Saitama Prefecture, Japan

    Asaka City


    In Japan, the cities of the Saitama Prefecture seemed almost blessed by comparison to the rest of the country. Spared from most major kaiju attacks since 1954, especially the events of 1995 and 2011, they have remained remarkably untrodden upon by kaiju and other megafauna. The city has become known as a place for refugees ever since survivors of the Fall of Tokyo came to the nearby area for safety. In recent years Saitama has become a major location for Extraspecies Cultural Exchange, with the city of Asaka standing out. Only the new capital city of Kyoto has had a bigger role in Interspecies relation in Japan.

    Remarkably, Saitama's proximity to the Tokyo Quarantine Zone has not resulted in much trouble, whether it be successful point defenses from around the city entrances or pure luck.

    With a population of 142,069 humanoids bolstered by refugee populations and the popular homestay program for liminal's, the relative peace in Asaka seems poised to stay that way.

    Until tonight.

    The Arakawa River, flowing through the prefecture and emptying into Tokyo Bay, may not have been as deep as say, Loch Ness or the Amazon.

    But it was still wide enough to hold what was emerging from below.

    For anyone watching, the only warning was a rapidly growing swirl of water before the black-green warped carapace rose from the waters.

    Body half above the surface, the mutations head emerged from under its upper shell. Hiding safely under a thick shell, the two black, glistening orbs that passed for eyes swept from side to side towards nearby concrete barriers and metal fences, its mandibles opening and closing as its body took in new scents and new vibrations from the world around it. Bright lights gleamed in the distance on buildings that towered above it.

    The creature let the rest of its body rise out of the water as it turned to a bridge, one surrounded by red gated barriers on the sides.

    The parasite felt the vibrations as more then dozens of vehicles moved back and forth across the bridge.

    It felt the heat of the living things around it, but the vibrations and heat coming for the bridge were most attractive. Prey was both large in number and packed together in that space above the water.

    Perfect conditions for a hungry predator.

    Leaning its body down, the oversized louse swung its tail from side to side as thick legs propelled it forward. White water washed off its side as if it was a boat.

    Rapidly rising below the bridge, the creature scuttled up from its supports.

    It was on top in less than ten seconds.

    Drool fell down the sides of its mandibles.

    The squeals of tires and the sounds of glass breaking heralded the start of the feast.

    [-]

    2011


    It was in the middle of Summer when the British Petroleum spill near Mexico happened. In the first hours and days, some say there was a gas build up that tore apart a drilling platform and caused it to collapse, opening a hole in the seafloor below it. Others say that it was a new plasma drill, an experimental prototype that pierced through layers of ocean crust.

    Regardless of the cause, what is known are the immediate effects.

    A breach, one torn into a previously unknown underwater habitat hidden beneath rock and stone for thousands of years, maybe more. Almost like a chain reaction, the accident opens more trenches across the sea.

    More breaches, and the things that live within.

    By the time the first reports of attacks from unidentified megafauna species came from all around the coasts of Mexico, Panama, the Caribbean, and the Southern United States, the rest of the world's governments and militaries immediately prepared to fortify their own coasts.


    Especially Japan.

    [-]

    Tsuruga Port, Fukui Prefecture


    One of three main ports connecting to the Sea of Japan, Tsuruga Port has been involved with trade since the Edo Period.

    Today, like all other major coastal areas, it is being turned into a beachhead, a line of defense for both the JSDF and the local Kaiju Defense Force. Civilians are evacuated as weapons and armor are brought in.

    Energy blasting maser dishes are dropped by chopper onto cliff sides, their operators setting them up as soon as possible. Mines filled with plasma and napalm are dragged onto beaches while tanks roll through the streets. Armed infantry soldiers, dressed in the gray, silver plated armor of the KDF, took positions on rooftops and behind electrical wiring in newly dug trenches, mortars at the ready. The ones on the roofs open suitcases filled with weaponry. They quickly fitted black helmets with silver visors onto their heads, ones that resembled motorcycle helmets.

    Some contained heavy guns with multiple barrels, glowing red marks and lines on the silver metal. A belt feeding from the gun into a silver pack covered in hazard symbols indicates its source of ammunition. Other weapons like flamethrowers and rocket launchers lay in open cases and are hefted up by their human users.

    After a night spent in preparation, it begins in the morning.

    Under a cloud of mist near the point, the intense pounding of white waves onto the shores and docks is their only warning.

    Glistening tendrils and glowing eyes begin to peek out of the water. Scaly armored forms rise, and with a burst of signal flares, gunfire pours into the central bay.

    The Battle of Tsuruga begins.

    Ten Minutes Later

    "Fall back! Fall back!" No one knew who said it, but few contested the order.

    The command barely echoed across the chaos of the battlefield. Roars were heard amongst explosions and nonstop gunfire; dust and flame already being thrown up. As soldiers ran back, shooting bullets and tossing grenades in the opposite direction, a door rattled at the end of a white building, one where a wet boulder had been tossed into the top floor, collapsing half the rooftop.

    With a muffled "Screw this!", the door broke in two halves the fell to the concrete as a figure stepped outside, leg outstretched before setting down.

    Dressed in a full armor kit with a green grenade attached at the hip, they held a massive tri-barreled gleaming gun. The soldier walked forwards, holding the weapon with ease while a figure in a lighter kit of armor, one lacking the silver plating on the first, stumbled out with a metal pack in their hands, one attached by a belt to the gun. They looked from side to side, noting all the chaos around them.

    The ground shook with a roar, danger getting closer every second.

    "Captain!" He shouted with alarm. "We have to fall back! We're giving them hell, but those things just keep coming- "

    The packman was interrupted by the gunner. "Not yet! We need to clear a path for anyone nearby, make sure we know where we are going," she gruffly shouted.

    At that, a scaly head as wide as a small ladder turned around a corner, pitch black and glowing blue across its veins. Pale blue eyes glowed as its serpentine neck struck out further, its open maw filled with needle like teeth that reminded her of a barracuda. The rest of its scaly body crawled out of cover, revealing the long neck and head to be attached to four-legged shelled form like that of crustacean. The creature leaned its head down as she pulled the trigger, barrel heating up and spinning. The beast began moving, legs clacking on the street as its jaw distended-

    A red-hot burst of heat shot forwards, from the barrels of the gun nearly twenty feet away from the breacher, blasting through the roof of its mouth.

    In a blast of sizzling blue blood, the back of its skull burst open. The beast fell to the ground, legs splaying out and neck swaying before falling. The now burning top of its head popped off and fell on top of the nearby curb.

    There was a moment of silence before the captain nodded to the pack man. "Corporal. Load another shot in the saw." Nodding, his trembling having stopped the slightest, he turned and pressed a button. The pack began to hum as he turned a crank on the side. The dimmed lights on the Heavy Laser Saw got brighter as the smoke drifted from the barrel. Both captain and corporal began falling back, hearing more roars and explosions.

    They passed the block, seeing a fellow soldier armored with a scoped rifle in his hands and explosive bullets strapped across his chest a full street away from them. "Over here!" The corporal shouted. The man barely had time to turn around before a tendril snuck through the corner around him. The man was dragged back and tossed into the air with a scream.

    The corporal jumped back as the captain raised her heavy gun.

    A bulbous, boneless head resembling the body of a jellyfish peaked around the corner, tendrils wriggling to the side of it. Four scaly dark tentacles covered in orange veins were attached to the bottom of the head, and they grabbed to the left and right of building, dragging the body with ease.

    The captain wasted no time before firing ahead with her weapon. The heated laser bean flew directly into its face.

    The thing was barely affected, smoke and vapor coming off its head as the red energy diffused down the sides of its tentacles. The soldiers ducked their heads as crackling red lightning fired off out of the tendrils at windows and sides, sending sparks up across rooftops. They recovered just as the middle of the creature's head opened, exposing a flabby maw filled with fangs. Spit and bones flew out as it dragged itself over to them, gaining ground. They fell back, firing another two blasts to the sides of its tentacles.

    Black scales and skin fell off and smoked before an explosive shell suddenly burst into the creature's head from the side. The left of its slimy head burst open as the shell exited the other right of the head muscle, impacting against an unfortunate shed.

    The creature's head violently popped open in an explosion of yellow fluid. Armored pieces and a sniper rifle fell out along with the shredded corral-esque structures in the head that passed for its brain.

    The captain and corporal ran up the corpse, firing two more blasts to make sure it was dead. They turned and saw a metallic tank coming down the road from the left, smoke coming off the end of its barrel. Turrets twitched from the sides. They stepped into its view, the tank pausing. "Friendlies! We're friendlies over here!" The corporal shouted in near rapture, gleeful to be safe on some level. Before any communication could be attempted, a dark green shape suddenly lunged onto it from above.

    The second the captain saw what was happening, she lifted her weapon and pulled the trigger-

    A few red sparks burst out. She turned to the corporal, glaring daggers as he hastily cranked the ammo pack as fast as he could.

    This one was bigger than the others. It had a long body like that of a giant salamander or tadpole, one covered in thick gray armor like a crocodile or alligator. It had four limbs, all grey, long, and bony with four black talons at each end. A thick, segmented tail pounded onto the ground as it grabbed onto the tank with its forelimbs. A thick dark head, resembling that of an eel, loudly growled as it attacked. One arm grabbed the barrel, tearing it off in a shower of sparks. The other grabbed the tanks right treads, tearing them off with a burst of smoke. Wheels and bolts rolled from under the tank as it fell to its right side.


    All of this happened within less than ten seconds.


    The captain lifted her now reloaded laser saw and fired a continuous stream of red energy at the monster. Interrupted, it let out a roar of surprise when the laser burned into its face. Smoke begin to waft from its head half a second before it raised a heavy limb, protecting its head as it shook it to get the surprise of the attack off. The veins in its armored claw began to glow red under it as it acted as a shield. Ducking its head under the arm, the armored breacher beast glared at the two humans before its lower mouth split open, green glow coming out of the back of its throat.

    They had seen enough to know where this was going.

    "Evade!" The captain shouted as she dropped her gun, the corporal dropping his pack a moment later. Both rolled to the side. A glowing fluid mixed with green and blue colors soared through the air and splashed down where they had been standing. The gun, pack, and pavement began to sizzle under the ten-foot-wide puddle, breaking and splitting within moments. The captain and corporal were silent with shock and more than a little anger.

    The monster, having lost interest in them due to either not seeing them as threats anymore or because it had far closer, bigger number of humans to eat right in front of them, got busy.

    Jaws dripping acidic slime distended as it bit into the metal turret. Its green eyes narrowed as it audibly began tearing away hunks of metal.

    There was nothing they had that could stop it now.

    "Damn it, no choice left! We have to go!" The captain shouted. The corporal didn't have to be told twice.

    They turned and ran from the sound of tearing, feeling guilty but knowing that they couldn't stay and die next either.

    They turned a corner and were blessed with the sight of a clear forest.

    From then on, after ten or fifteen minutes of walking through the trees, they reached an opening in an area full of green, long grass. Another set of forestry was right in front of them, but they nevertheless began walking the edge up to the nearest hill for a better vantage point.

    Behind them, they could still hear warfare from the port. As they looked around for other survivors, corporal slightly limping behind the captain in his armor, they heard a most satisfying noise.

    From a cliffside they saw in the distance, a maser dish fired multiple blasts of crackling atomic energy into the bay, sending up steam. There would be a roar, and then the sight of a burning tentacle or fish-like head being tossed up into the air before falling back into the water after a blast or two.

    While they couldn't see the other masers, things were genuinely looking up, and in the distance other armored troopers were nodding and even whooping and hollering in triumph.

    Then it all went to hell once again.

    A skinless tentacle lashed out from below the cliff out of their view, grabbing onto the dish and pulling it forwards. Another armored beast, this one pale white, leapt up and grabbed onto the back of it, vomiting acid onto the battery.

    The weapon burst into flame, sparking blue power randomly before the breacher pushed it over the edge. A loud explosion echoed from below, followed by a flume of flame. Silhouetted by the glow, the white breacher reared its head back and let out a hoarse echoing growl of triumph.

    "Damn." She groaned. The corporal shook his head and began with, "What now?"

    The captain turned her head to the nearest group of five retreating soldiers moving up the side of a hill nearly fifty feet away from them.

    How could this happen? Where were the new M-Raptors? How could they be forced into retreat after all their preparations?

    Shaking her head, she prepared to move ahead when there was a sound like parting wind.


    THWIP


    She barely had time to think before something tackled her, knocking her to the ground. In surprise, she instinctively drew a fifteen-inch knife from her boot before rapidly turning around.

    The corporal stood, three trees falling behind him. Stone shards were impaled in their trunks.

    He stood with his arms outstretched where he had pushed her out of the barrage.

    Two-foot long jagged shards resembling knives stuck out of his chest.



    He looked down, then at her before falling backwards on the ground, blood pooling under him.

    "No! Corporal stay still-" she yelled before grabbing onto him, wondering how she could stabilize him.

    A soft hiss sent her gaze to the left.


    Breaking through the tree's twenty meters away, a black armored breacher stood. It's left arm was raised, smoke coming off it.

    It had thrown a piece of rubble so hard, that it had nearly set its own hand aflame.

    It turned its head in her direction, and the singed mark on the side of its face made it quite clear that the tank crew had done almost nothing to satiate its hunger.

    Even though it was a terrible idea in every respect, the captain held out her blade and glared down at it.


    "You."


    Holding the knife, she strummed her fingers over the grenade on her hip. A plan was already formulating in her mind. As the creature began to walk to her, dripping mouth opening and splitting, she was ready to pull the pin when the cavalry arrived.

    Gunfire and a rocket slammed into the side of the fiend, causing it to roar in surprise.

    On the hill that she was planning to reach, a fully armored group of six soldiers wearing the green colored steel and yellow padding of the Heavy Urban Team fired away with armor piercing tripod mounted machine guns. Two of them had green rocket launchers, ones they reloaded with every shot.

    Well, she would take what she could get.

    Tapping the side of her helmet's vocalizers, she shouted "Keep it distracted!". Plasma grenade in her hands, hopefully they would see and understand what she was doing.

    They kept firing, the creature now simply raising an arm to block the bullets aimed at its face as it spotted the captain and began moving after her at a gradual pace. The lack of an extra limb helped slow it down further. It was confident in itself.

    She climbed the hill as fast as she could, the creature flicking a missile out of the way with its shielding arm. She turned and waited for it to lunge.

    She got ready to pull the pin, knowing the explosive device would soon heat up.

    No going back now. Now just below the squad, with the fiend nearly twenty feet away, she reared her arm back and tossed it as far as she could.

    The creature opened its mouth at ten feet, exposing its glowing inner jaw. Ten feet.

    The grenade flew right into its mouth as it was about to lunge right at her. Five feet.

    She dropped to he ground in front of her as fast as she could.

    Zero feet.

    Then there was a great burst of heated vapor and a roar of pain as the explosive force sent her sprawling backwards. Briefly soaring into the air for a moment, she could feel the heat and hear the strangled roar of the thing as she was sent sprawling upwards on defiance of gravity.

    Falling in the grass, she groaned as she felt cool air for a moment under her faceplate. A heavy soldier dropped his bazooka and was quickly by her side, helping her up. "You alright Captain?" he said, noting the silver star on her shoulder.

    The front of her armor had become warped and cracked, and a now exposed brown eye blinked through the shattered left side of her helmet visor. Shaking her head, she got up and regarded the now assembled troopers who were keeping their weapons aimed down below the hill.

    She was about to speak when a familiar crashing roar alerted her.

    She looked down and regretted it. Gouges and rivers of flowing dirt had been pulled down the hill where it had fallen. Rising from its position, smoke flew out of its nostrils and mouth.

    It coughed and fully lifted its armored head.

    The breachers lower jaw had been split in two. Green blood and fangs dropped out.

    There was no longer any hunger in its eyes.

    Just hate.

    She gripped her blade even harder.

    So be it. If this was how it would end, she would not go gently.


    At least that was her thought before a gleaming spiral tipped missile blasted down from the sky.


    By the time she had blinked, it had buried itself in the armored breachers back. Time seemed to slow down as a torrent of blood shot out from where the missile had struck. The missile drilled straight down, and the tip likely speared out of it's belly before the missile detonated.

    Red and orange flame consumed the monster, and by the time the smoke cleared it's middle was gone except for some burning chunks scattered around it on the tree's. The rest of the monster, it's blasted open head, lay burning and boiling while its limbs lay blasted and cratered away from it.

    The death of the acid spitter occurred within less then five seconds. The captain and the crew quickly looked up and were greeted by a most welcome sight.

    A massive mechanical figure flew above them. Two open black cones that passed for arms were attached to a bigger, silver body. A gleaming missile, one yet to be launched, lay prepared in the left arm. A spinning saw lay at its back, a blocky "tail" at the end. The head of the machine had two yellow bulbs for eyes and a drill in front of the, for lack of a better term, face.


    MOGUERA


    Japan's rising success in anti-kaiju operations, the MOGUERA mech was essentially a 160,000-ton flying tank. Armed with everything from full metal missiles to long-range plasma cutters, it was just what the KDF needed to turn the situation.

    Another missile from MOGUERA was sent flying towards the white breacher on the cliff. Lifting its head as it finished swallowing the last dish technician, it turned around just in time to receive a spiral missile to the side. The creature let loose a howl as it sent off the edge, followed by an explosion that broke off the side of the cliff. It fell into the sea with a house sized splash of white water.

    The MOGUERA simultaneously fired a burst of yellow plasma bolts from its eyes. Howls of pain could be heard in the distance as the bolts struck true, while one of those blob-headed squids took a barrage directly to the head as it was climbing a building. It's head and tendrils swelled and glowed red before exploding into a shower of fluid. The remains fell backwards onto the ground in a plume of dust. It clearly had a limit to the amount of energy attacks it could resist.

    Smoke and vapor tossed up by its assault, MOGUERA flew over the port and turned around in a practiced maneuver, ready to do another sweep. Having fired its missiles, a black tube rose from each arm and began firing blue turbolasers into the port alongside its eye bolts. It was now an all-out assault. More armed soldiers, some hanging onto each other's shoulders and others having taken their helmets off, stopped to observe the lightshow as if entranced. The captain took her helmet off, black hair falling to her shoulders as the Japanese woman let out the slightest smile.

    MOGUERA's chest compartment opened, and out of it came a miniature maser cannon dish. A multicolored blast sparking with power shot out into the bay. The flaming heads and claws of barracuda headed crustaceans fell across the beach, charred black and steaming.

    As the cheers of the gathering survivors increased, the captain realized one was missing.

    The realization hit her like a truck full of harpies.

    She turned down the hill and saw the corporal, still bleeding on the forest floor.

    The puddle around him had grown dark, and now surrounded his body like a stain.

    "No! Corporal Takasaka!" She yelled, increasing concern in her normal casual, confident composure as she rushed down the hill, heavy armor be damned. Takasaka's helmet had been taken off, revealing a youthful face with spiky black hair. Blood trailed down the side of his mouth, and his eyes were glazed over.

    It was almost time.

    There were two armored soldiers sitting next to him, red crosses on their shoulder pieces. One man was without a helmet, revealing his bald head and black, thick beard. He looked down at the stone shard jutting out of Tasakasa's chest. Red tearing began to grow out the stab wounds. His ribs could be seen under them.

    "Not good. Not good at all." The bearded medic said in a thick accent. Nevertheless, he still sprayed the area around the wounds with a foam from a green spray bottle, likely antibiotics to clean the wounds. He began applying bandages around the torso, knowing his efforts were likely futile. But he would be damned if he didn't try.

    The captain was by his side in seconds. Cradling his head in her hand, she listened closely. "Takasaka, hold on, we'll have a new set of organs cloned for you out of the vats by the end of the week-"

    The man coughed and slowly spoke in a whisper, "My brother…tell him-" blood came out as he coughed once more, droplets spilling onto his armor as the medics held him down, trying to keep him from convulsing. His face was now pale from the blood loss.

    "No, no, not yet you've gotten this far, this battle isn't over-" She said once again, wiping blood away with jittering fingers.

    She had seen death before, but not as slow and personal as this.

    He spoke on once more, oddly calm in his tone. "Captain Smith ...tell my brother, Satsuke…I'm sorry I won't be home…" His voice cut out, shallow breathing the only sign he was alive.

    More maser blasts shot down from MOGUERA's chest as the mech kept circling around the port, fires growing across the streets below.

    Smith watched the as the port town burned. The cheers began gradually dying down, as if all survivors had come to a collective realization.

    They had survived, but as fire and scorched bodies small and large reflected off of water and metal, it was clear that the victory could hardly be called such at all.

    Pyrrhic was closest term for it.

    Corporal Tasasaka lay limp and was silent. No breath or movement came from his open mouth or glazed eyes.

    He was dead, and on some level no matter how many times Kuroko Smith would relive the moment from this day forward, she would never stop thinking about all she could have done differently.

    A deep, pounding drone pierced the memory.

    [-]

    2:39 AM

    December 6th, 2013

    Cultural Exchange Security Headquarters


    Kuroko Smith, Head Coordinator of Saitama's Cultural Exchange, woke up in the darkness of her temporary office just as the droning alarm started from outside, one that sounded like dozens of hands were slamming onto cymbals at the same time.

    She groaned as she woke up, still wrapping the blanket around herself on the mattress. "Damn, what is it-"

    That's when she recognized it. An alarm like this, one this late could only be sounded when something severe had occurred without warning, something threatening everyone in the city which meant immediate action had to be taken because there was a-

    "Kaiju! At this time of night, son of a-"

    Suddenly up and alert, Smith tossed off her blanket and within seconds, flicked on a nearby light switch before sliding over to her desk. Pulling a drawer open, she then reached in and grabbed onto her familiar black coordinator uniform and dressed as well as she could in her half groggy, half alert state.

    Now illuminated, one could see the office fully. Aside from the desk and mattress where she practically lived on really long work weeks, the room had a large window overlooking the rest of the city at the back of the room and on the sides. It paid to know if something was coming your way.

    On a wall in the back, there lay a large brown wooden shelf, one holding military medals in various shapes and sizes. Five pictures displayed KDF troopers marching in various settings, from the sands of Saradia to the coastlines of Japan itself.

    In the center of the memorial shelf, dressed in KDF armor minus the helmet, a younger Smith stood grinning on top of a severed, burned Biollante vine, smoking laser saw in hand with one of Afghanistan's sandy mountains in the background.

    With a brief glance, the now dressed Smith sighed as she straightened her tie and ran out. "What were they thinking, putting me behind a desk…" she grumbled as she grabbed a pair of dark sunglasses.

    At least tonight was the kind of situation she understood.

    [-]

    Smith forced the door to the control room open. If there was one thing her superiors did right, it was installing this room in case of a threat like this. Not just for kaiju, but for coordinating during natural disasters in general.

    1954 had taught the populace many lessons that would never be forgotten.

    In fact, the Cultural Exchange itself, at least in Japan, was essentially another branch of the defense forces in all but name.

    In the room, people in uniforms like her own typed away at consoles and computers while those standing shouted out orders.

    At the front was a massive screen showing live footage that confirmed her worst fears.

    Through shaky aerial helicopter footage, she could see a beast with a bumpy green shell walking across a bridge. It shook a car in its mouth, breaking it in two as its sole occupant fell out screaming. People fled away from the beast, a few exiting from crashed cars or those that had stopped with their way forwards blocked.

    Tossing the two halves of the vehicles of the side, the mutant lunged forwards and grabbed the fallen occupant in it's jaws just as he was getting off the ground. Lit up by the chopper's light, it tilted its head back and gulped him down as it forced its body forwards, knocking over more cars.

    A Shockirus. Common parasites on adult kaiju. Smith thought, fist clenched in anger as more than a few gasps rang out from those observing the violent scene. But how did this one get so big?

    It was a disastrous pileup.

    The small kaiju's sudden emergence and attack had created a veritable system of wrecked cars, some on top of another. The civilians could only try to climb as fast as they could.

    The Shockirus lunged again, this time grabbing three screaming people in one bite. At that point Smith stopped gawking. Work had to be done. She immediately marched to the closest person who wasn't occupied.

    One young woman with brown hair reaching down to her neck turned around and widened her eyes at the sight of Smith. "Coordinator Smith, err, sorry I didn't notice you when you walked in-" Smith waved her off. "Secretary, what is the status of the nearest defense forces?"

    The woman looked at a tablet nervously. "I contacted them. The attacker wasn't noticed beforehand, so only the closest reserve infantry are coming to the scene. KDF armored divisions will be at the city limits in half an hour-"

    Not fast enough. In these conditions, armored infantry will cause as much damage as the bug.

    "MOGUERA?" she asked. The secretary gulped and turned to a man wearing a baseball cap who appeared to have just finished typing on a computer. "Liaison Yaguchi, how goes asking for MECH-Support?"

    The man turned grimly. "I have some bad news from our KDF contacts. M was in the middle of a new reactor installation, something about protecting it from potential organic EMP's. At this rate, it will be two days before it will be ready for battle."

    Smith paused and then turned to the secretary. "Coffee. Now."

    This was not good, and she did all that she could to steady her hands.

    As the young woman nodded and walked out to the get the holy drink, Smith turned and watched the screen. A local police chopper was on the scene now, and a door slid open to reveal an armored SAT trooper was holding a mounted grenade launcher. The trooper fired down on to the mutant louse's armored carapace.

    It barely registered the explosion, knocking over more cars as alarms screamed around it. By now around a dozen or bodies lay still.

    The creature grabbed and slurped up a few of the fallen bodies-were they dead or alive?-before reaching the biggest part of the pileup.

    Rearing its head back, the louse thrust it's body forwards. The unlikely barricade collapsed, smoke and flame spreading as its tore its way ahead.

    Cars flipped and rolled.

    Flames reflecting its body, the Shockirus walked forwards as crowds fled ahead of it. Up ahead, on rooftops, first responder KDF troopers in full armor fired at it with mounted machine guns alongside similarly armed SAT.

    The most they could hope to do was distract it.

    And if they got its attention, best hope they had a zipline on hand.

    The secretary returned at that moment, steaming coffee in hand. "Thanks." Smith curtly said, quickly huffing the hot drink down. More then a few heads turned. A young lady with red hair in a braid held a hand up to an earpiece on the left side of her head. "Coordinator Smith, I have received news about the status of the nearest M-Raptor pilots…they are currently stuck in traffic."

    A crack appeared on the side of Smith's now drained mug, her face oddly expressionless. Her next words cut like steel. "How. Did. This. Happen?"

    And on the rare occasion where Kuroko Smith was serious, you paid attention.

    "They were on vacation leave,-" Of course! "And had just returned from the countryside when their transport got caught up in the evacuation traffic. Even if they leave their vehicles, it will take a while for them to reach the local KDF hangar-"

    As if she didn't have enough reason to dislike the tyrannosaur sized mechs. Their effectiveness was undeniable, but for her, there was one problem: they were never around when she needed them.

    At Tsuruga, the mechs showed by the time the port was burned down and when almost all breachers were dead. How many lives would have been saved if they had been there yesterday?

    And now, because of traffic, these pilots weren't there when she most needed them.

    Smith's glasses shined for a moment before she calmly set them down on the table, her brown eyes sharp as bronze.

    Back at the screen, the creature slammed its side onto a bus and knocked it over. Tearing windows off with it's jaws, it stabbed it's mandibles inside to get at the passengers like a demented game of whack a mole.

    Bullets spilled off its side, barely making the beast flinch.

    The situation was grim. Heavy backup was going to take a while or would not be available outright.

    They needed units equipped to deal with a unique situation, and they need them now-

    Humans were not the only ones running now. She could see a centaur running with some young humans holding onto her back for dear life. A kobold and kitsunes, recent homestays if she remembered correctly, were running on fours in an animalistic panic.

    Human lives were not the only ones in danger.

    Making it worse, most of the high-power weapons they could use right now may collaterally put both Japanese citizens and Extraspecies individuals in danger, with the latter likely bringing heat down on the Cultural Exchange. Just what could they legally deploy now-

    Smith's eyes glinted as the realization came to her.

    Who was a heavily armed squad with ready access to heavy, specialized weapons and tactics that could be deployed to deal with a non-human foe and who could adapt to dangerous situations as quickly as they could be deployed?

    She quickly whipped out a phone.

    "I am contacting the MON squad. Prepare to adjust our tactics accordingly." More then a few grins broke out, followed by an equal atmosphere of tenseness and even some fear.

    She was the boss, and if they wanted to survive the night during this attack they knew what to do.

    The new orders were being shouted, and the clacking of keyboards rapidly increased to adjust to this new variable.

    The redhead looked down to a notification on her console.

    "Coordinator! The Serizawa Analysis is complete!"

    The Serizawa Analysis was a program meant for classifying new kaiju species. It would analyze the shape, movement, and energy levels of a new organism alongside a monthly updated list of local myths, legends, and popular culture to give a kaiju its name.

    Smith walked over to the computer, more then a few curious techs and agents joining her to see the results.

    Specimen: Giger
    Height: 15 Meters
    Class: I

    [-]

    2:45 AM

    MON Safehouse #001


    Looking like a large apartment building from the outside, the safehouse belonged to the Monster Ops: Neutralization squad. They were elite extraspecies agents, the ones who were called in to deal with other liminals whose actions had threatened the Interspecies Protection Act, or if extraspecies in general were in danger.

    Despite its fortress-esque exterior, the inside looked surprisingly like that of a simple apartment. In a yellow colored bedroom, a young woman with short black hair sat in the room with the lights off except for a turned on lamp next to a desk. Clad in simple yellow pajamas, she held a manga up to her face.

    The front of the manga depicted a young girl with red eyes who was clad in a black cape, and whom appeared to be grinning in the process of preparing to throw a storm of icicles down at some red-horned demons.

    "Doesn't necessarily have to drink blood…. barely bothered by the sun…"

    The reader sighed as she propped the book down on her desk. You could easily have mistaken her for a normal human if not for the large purple eye at the center of her forehead.

    "So inaccurate…might as well not be a vampire at all…" she shook her head, eye closed as she softly spoke.

    Manako
    Race: Monoeye Orc
    Specialization: Long distance shooting
    -Accuracy is important in all its forms
    -Doesn't like crowds.
    -Knows six different kinds of botany-based professions.


    The door to her room flew open with a slam. She blinked her eye. "Zombina, what-"

    A red headed figure she was quite familiar with strode in. Alarms went off in the Monoeye's head. Her fellow agent was dressed up fully in the signature black and yellow outfit of MON, shotgun slung across her back.

    Green and yellow eyes shifted back and forth on a patch of discolored skin as the agent instinctively scanned the room for threats. Stitches could be seen across her face before she turned to Manako, literal sharp toothed grin growing across her undead visage.

    "Up and at em, Man! We're getting called in to do what we do best!"

    Zombina
    Race: Amniotic Zombie
    Specialization: Automatic weapons/Improvisation
    -Plays dead to get behind enemy lines
    -Requires skin and organ transplants to replace all the damage created by her reckless fighting style
    -MON unit commander in the field if higher authority is not physically present


    Manako was immediately up and following Zombina. "What is it, terrorists again?"

    Zombina shook her head and grinned. "Nope! Tonight we're gonna be Monster Hunters!

    Manako blinked before she remembered the kind of country she lived in.

    "K-Kaiju?" She shouted, louder than before.

    "Yep, kaiju. Just got a call from Smith. Apparently we're the only ones available quickest-"

    "-And legally."

    A brown skinned figure floated down the nearby hallway as they entered, idly twirling the long white hair swirling around her body.

    Doppel
    Race: Doppelganger
    Specialization: Infiltration/Martial Arts
    -Older than she looks
    -Long hair is prehensile
    -Mortal Kombat 3 MVP


    Manako paled for a moment as Zombina grinned and held her shoulders. "I got the call from Smith too, Manako. She's telling the truth, apparently, it's a giant bug. Not like we're fighting Big G or anything like that."

    This did little to reassure Manako.

    Then the sound of a door slamming open was heard once more on a larger scale.

    A high-pitched voice shouted. "GIRLS! COME WITH ME TIO HAS SOMETHING TO SHOW YOU OH DEAR WE HAVE TO HELP-"

    A shadow fell over them, as they turned their heads in dread their eyes could only widen before Doppel whispered an "Oh crap-"

    Massive arms squeezed around them like a vice as they were slammed headfirst into a heavy valley.

    The tall woman holding them to her chest was wearing a long peach colored nightgown as she held them tight. With bronze skin and long blonde hair being her most immediate traits, the singular horn on top of her head alongside her powerful large muscules made it clear that she too was an Extraspecies individual.

    Tionishia
    Race: European Ogre
    Specialization: Close Quarters Demolition
    -Loyal to her friends
    -Big in multiple senses
    -Loves to cuddle


    With a grunt, Doppel pulled her head out of the grip. "Yeah, we know! Smith called us"

    "Great!" Tio said as she suddenly ran to her room, teammates still held against her. "Wait! It's still on the screen, lets see if we can learn anything useful!"

    The three were gently dropped on the ground in front of a large bed in a pink room. Toy stuffed animals lay posed on shelves all around the room as if watching. Doppel looked annoyed as Manako looked away, blushing madly.

    With a crack, Zombina pulled her arm back in its joint as she turned to a TV screen in the back of Tio's room. "Look! It's on the news!'' said Ogre shouted, jumping on the bed and pointing in excitement.

    "Giger" rampage continues! was the headline posted on the screen.

    They finally saw their foe from the perspective of a news crew on the streets.

    The mutant Shockirus was rearing up, slamming its head into the side of a café. Crushed or turned over police cars lay around the site. Wood and glass fell to the side of its mandibles as it tore the place apart.

    "Dang, that place was my favorite!" Doppel shouted, sounding truly angry for the first time this night. Manako narrowed her eye. "Wait, isn't that close to our-"

    A faint rumble from outside answered that question.

    At least they wouldn't have to go far to fight it.

    Through shaky camera footage with the words A-1 News at the bottom left, they watched as Giger thrust half its body in, pulling out a very surprised green scaled lamia with yellow hair in ringlets by her humanoid half. An echidna, they realized.

    She barely had time to scream before the giant louse reared its head back, and with a sudden snap of its mandibles she stopped moving. Manako covered her mouth as Tio gasped. Doppel grimaced and looked away for a moment while Zombina took a firm grip to one of Tio's sheets.

    The louse tilted it's head back as if to swallow her body like a noodle. The cameraman understandably turned to run.

    Enough was enough.

    With a growl, Zombina stood up and began marching out the door. "To the armory!" she shouted, and within moments they reached a nearby elevator. Leading down to a hidden basement/armory with a tunnel and road that lead to the surface, they then patiently waited for it to arrive after Zombina tapped the call button.

    Doppel pulled out a phone from an improvised pocket in her hair, eyes scanning a veritable fleet of messages. "Got a new update from Ms. Smith." She said. All eyes turned to her.

    "She's managed to fully clear us. We can conduct this as we wish."

    Zombina smiled.

    "The standard military will be here sometime within the next hour, but we can try our own plan first before they officially move according to her negotiations with the KDF-"

    Zombina's grin widened.

    "-Special AKM units will arrive regardless. Hopefully to finish it off if it lives. Additionally, we are cleared to use Level 5 weaponry."

    Doppel paused as the realization set in among the group.

    Zombina was allowed to use Level 5 weaponry.

    The kind of guns you could only legally use during a full-on invasion of a city.

    Zombina's fangs were showing now. It would not be a surprise if her nature was making her excited smile stiffen.

    Doppel blinked. Ah Hell, what have we done?

    Turning her head to the group, Zombina spoke up, with excitement.

    "Tell her to give us ten minutes to suit up. I already have a plan."

    [-]

    3:25 AM


    Giger reared around a corner, streets now empty. Most had evacuated or were now hiding in kaiju shelters or basements.

    A torn shirt floated down from its jaws.

    The key word being most.

    Giger shifted its head and beady eyes from left to right, trying to sense more heat. Walking downtown, its path had led it from the bridge to a neighborhood of smaller houses then this one.

    Despite its power, it had little motive beyond hunting and eating.

    Lifting its head up, it reached out with its senses, feeling more heat in the distance-

    It never saw the shot coming.

    Standing on the rooftop of an apartment a mile away, Manako's gaze was steely as she glared down the sights of a long red scopeless rifle, one as long as Tio's arm. Behind the yellow-vest clad woman, a discarded tank with a harness at the front of it lay next to a pipe.

    The explosive anti material rifle required great strength and accuracy to be wielded. Against a megafauna around twenty meters of height, it is like a wasp stinging it again and again.

    Against humans, it is absolute overkill.

    The first bullet struck against a glossy black eye, out a small burst of sparks and fire that made it rear its body back in apparent surprise.

    Another shot hit it, sending out a spray of green blood as a crack grew across the armored left eye.

    This time it let out a shriek like that of a bizarre bird as it lunged to the side. It was as if it was striking at some invisible enemy, unaware of the forces that were actually attacking it.

    "Here's the plan! Manako, you trained the most with the jet pack. You'll get to a distant place, and you'll use the EXP AMR to get its attention, then take the freak's eyes out so that it becomes reliant on sound-"

    Three more bullets impacted against Giger's eyes, with another in its left and with the last two going to its right eye, causing it to swing its body around and bite at thin air.

    With one last bullet in the magazine, Manako fired at the armor of its left leg. Limb jerking slightly, the beast shifted its body. It stabbed its mandibles at the concrete sidewalk, angling its body directly in front of an old warehouse.

    That was Tio's cue.

    The beast's leg happened to be right near a window when Tio burst out, glass shattering and clanging against her newly equipped steel plated armor.

    Tio, use the thermal-concealing armor. Once Manako lures it to you, jump out and take out its front legs!

    With a cry of "TEMPS DE MARTEAU!" echoing from her red visored helmet, Tio jumped right onto a segmented limb with an audible crunch.

    Green blood splashed onto a nearby traffic light as Giger reared up with a shriek. It lunged forward with new speed, Tio ducking.

    The mandibles only scraped the top of her helmet for barely a half of a second.

    Tio's helm cracked before the top fell to pieces of steel. The sand sized shards clacked to the ground as her long hair billowed out, eyes now visible.

    Most would have lost their cool at this point, but when it came to danger, Tio was not one to let things like panic get in the way.

    Tio shook her head, rattling any metal shards in it out as she dashed to the right. The now upright, limping mutant slammed a limb down in front of a nearby alley to stop her-

    Tio slammed both her fists into the limb with a haymaker.

    The moment her hit connected, one could hear the wind itself being buffeted.

    There was another snap and then the limb scooted to the side, green blood oozing from the bottom. Tio forced her way into the alley, avoiding the enraged stab that followed.

    She turned around as she heard another enraged shriek. Giger slammed its head into the sides of the alley, stone groaning as it forced its weight up against the entrance like a battering ram.

    Pulling the rest of her helmet off, Tio stared the mutant down.

    Bina-chan, I hope this plan works! She thought.

    She got her answer when a red laser shot against the side of Giger's shell with an audible sizzle. The creature pulled its head out, releasing another shriek of indignation.

    Doppel....when was the last time you were behind the wheel of a jeep?

    Standing on top of a yellow and black MON jeep with a turret mount, Zombina grinned, her yellow vest flapping in the wind as the weapon in her hands crackled with orange glowing power.

    [-]

    KDF Munitions 101:
    The Anti-Hedorah Gun is one of many weapons meant for dealing with hostile lifeforms with ammoniac and toxin-based biology. 60 Inches long. It also has a three-foot-tall titanium shield on either side of the front of its trigger, with a sight in the middle. Attached to a large Mechagodzilla derived battery, the weapon is intended to be fired in one place, either mounted at cover or inside of a moving vehicle.

    Built like a long silver tube, it has multiple red wires across it that feed into the battery.

    It can be fired like a repeater, shooting multiple laser blasts to gradually wear a threat down. It can also be fired in a high-powered continuous beam that can gradually pierce through heavy armor at the cost of straining the battery and massively heating the clear, circular barrel.


    [-]

    From behind the wheel, Doppel grumbled as the battery glowed in the seat behind her. "Of all the uses she could think of for something like me..."

    Nevertheless, the plan was in motion.

    Zombina fired another blast of red heat. Smoke and flakes of green skin fell of Giger's bumpy shell as it limped in their direction with surprising speed, nevertheless unable to stand upright with its damage. "Go!'' Zombina yelled, Doppel driving to the left as it followed. Zombina waited for the gun to cool down. "Remember, once we have it where we want it…you know what to do."

    Doppel nodded, grinning toothily. This would be the part the plan she liked.

    We lure it to the bridge. By now everyone will have evacuated that area. Then, we turn around, overcharge the gun, then jump out before it collides with the bug!

    It was dangerous, it was reckless, and it was definitely something you'd expect from the Undead Commando.

    With another blast to the space around its eyes, they slowed down Giger once more.

    Within minutes, they reached the bridge, bodies and upturned cars around them.

    The car screeched to the side. They only had to wait for a few seconds before Giger's form, littered with scorch marks, turned the corner to face them. Shrieking, it began to limp forwards.

    "Ready, Doppel?"

    "I was born ready."

    Doppel hit the acceleration. The weapon hummed and sparked as Zombina set it into overcharge. Sensing the challenge, Giger moved ahead. Windows audibly shuddered around them.

    Thirty feet. Doppel flung herself out, the door slamming open as she expertly rolled out.

    She turned and waited for Zombina to let the overcharged gun go.

    The zombie did not budge.

    Doppel's pupils narrowed at the slightest as she rapidly flicked at a small earpiece in her left ear.

    "What are-" she began before Zombina interrupted her over the airwaves.

    "Can't risk the gun not going off if no one is pulling the trigger!" Fifteen feet.

    "Gotta hold till it overloads." Nine feet.

    "Point blank-Shield will hol-" One feet. The gun was now glowing red.

    Giger tilted its head with apparent confusion before the jeep crashed into it. The head was forced to the side with a clang as the jeep rumbled at its now exposed underside.

    Zero feet.

    Even thirty feet away, Doppel lifted her hands as she felt the heat of the red explosion.

    She lifted her arms from her eyes when she heard the one last pained shriek from Giger. The explosion hid much of its appearance while also hefting it's body above the ground.

    Giger's remaining limbs flailed wildly.

    A conflagration of flame burst across the beast's skin before it fell, ash billowing in its wake. A single leg twitched.

    The damn thing was finally dead.

    That's when her second concern came back.

    Zombina!

    Hair buffeting around her, Doppel floated forwards as fast as she could.

    The nearest building shuddered and groaned.

    [-]

    Zombina groaned as the first rays of light caught her eyes. Hearing stone grind, she felt dust on her face before she fully opened her eyes.

    Feels like I can barely move my legs.

    Raising a hand, she tensed when a massive limb grabbed her own, but relaxed when she remembered who it belonged to.

    When Tio grabs you, it was hard to forget the first time.

    "I found her!'' The excited tone made it clear that it was indeed Tio.

    Zombina was pulled forwards from under Giger's body. Coughing out dust, she saw Tio's worried expression as she suddenly paused whatever she was about to say. Behind her was a large crowd. She could see lots of gawking civilians and around a dozen police officers alongside men and women in construction helmets. A few KDF troopers, expressions hidden under helms, silently watched.

    Zombina turned around as her jaw dropped. Damn near literally.

    Giger was dead. Its green armor was charred, warped, and dried out, with a blood-stained gouge from the area under it from where she had been pulled out. It's legs had twisted and cracked, charred as black as the rest of it. The head of the beast had ceased all movement. It had dimmed and gone a sickly pale color, green fluid dripping out from between Giger's mandibles.

    Under the body, it likely looked worse from where the Anti-Hedorah weapon had pierced and fired into its internal organs. There was a massive hole on it's side where the cooked inards could be seen.

    Holes surrounded by gunpowder lined the bleached skull; the local forces had taken care to make sure it was dead. Half a building appeared to have collapsed last night, as a pile of dusty bricks had fallen on the middle of it. She could see a big hole in the unfortunate brick building above it, confirming her hypothesis.

    Doppel pushed her way through the crowd, Manako behind her. The latter nervously looked down, trying to remain small, unused to such large amounts of attention.

    Doppel made her way to where Zombina had been pulled out by Tio. "You-" she began before pausing. A gasp came from Manako and more than a few others.

    At that point Zombina realized just how quiet everyone was being.

    Why, didn't we win-

    She looked down at her torso and got her answer.

    Her uniform was torn up and charred to the color of ash. Beyond that, everything below her chest was gone.

    Not mangled or torn off, simply gone. The shield only offered so much protection.

    The only thing protruding was a white, wriggling thing twitching from side to side as she reached out in surprise. She'd been shredded before and was used to it as a zombie, but not as bad as this.

    She then realized that the wriggling thing was her spine.

    Oh, she thought before going limp in Tio's arm. "At least that still works." she simply said as she slapped a gloved hand to her cheek.

    The hand promptly fell off with a wet smack to the ground, and the shouting and running finally began.
     
    Mindofsteel and Generalissimo like this.
  3. Threadmarks: Induction
    ScriptGenius12

    ScriptGenius12 Know what you're doing yet?

    Joined:
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    Interworld Stratosphere (IS) Academy, Adonoa Island

    December 8th, 2013


    Few buildings were left standing in the small town. Upturned cars and rubble of what used to be wood and brick homes were scattered across yards, sidewalks, and streets.

    It was as if a tornado had torn through the area.

    The three toed footprints imprinting into mud and cracked concrete said a different story.

    From around a corner, a shadow appeared and grew as a scaly grey foot stepped into view. A boxy head with glowing yellow eyes turned around a corner, letting loose an echoing howl that exposed a maw full of serrated teeth. It fully stepped around the building, revealing its nine meters of body.

    It was a large theropod with grey scales across its body. Two limbs the size of human arms protruded from it's chest, three curved claws at the end of each of the arms. Its thick grey torso ended with a grey tail, one that stood rigidly in place behind it without swaying.

    The theropod moved forwards into the street. Air puffed out from its nose as its head turned from side to side.

    Suddenly, a distorted squawk echoed above it before a winged smoking form fell right in front of it.

    The fallen object resembled a green Pteranodon, a long extinct species from a genus of flying reptiles. It's mouth lay open, oily fluid spilling out. Cracks ran across it's badly singed form. It's wings were splayed to the side, with tearing on the left. The right wing was steadily burning up. Smoked poured from the blasted open back of the torso, with sparking wires and metal scrap visible within.

    The theropod tilted its head in apparent curiosity for before a loud metallic clanging resounded from directly behind a nearby two story building made it turn it's head to the left.

    It barely had moved its body before the building suddenly collapsed as something tore into it from the other side.

    It raised in head just in time for a giant metal red fist to slam forwards through the falling structure, all of this happening within seconds.

    The punch solidly connected with the side of its head, flinging it to the side as it stumbled back.

    The fist drew back as its owner broke on through to the other side.

    It was a humanoid robot, one with armor resembling that of an ancient samurai. A red multiplated Kabuto helmet with two golden prongs sticking out from the top lay upon its head. A stoic silver colored mask slid over the robot's "face".

    The arms and legs were a solid red, intentionally built to resemble iron plating on old armor sets. The torso, by contrast, was painted a with deep greens and browns in the style of a camouflaged soldier. It had two weapons, one a blade sheathed at its side that was at a length of three meters. The other was a right arm-mounted yellow rectangular cannon as thick as its arm, one that ran down from its forearm to its shoulder. The muzzle of the launcher was red-hot, indicating that it had recently been used.

    The body of the mechanical Pteranodon burst into flame and was then still as its joints popped and sizzled.

    The theropod righted itself and quickly turned back to the robot. It shook its head, spitting out sparks to the sidewalk as it reared back, as if ready to charge.

    The mecha drew the blade, revealing it to be a massive gleaming katana. The theropod lunged forwards, missing as the mecha dodged like a stream around a stone.

    Gleaming teeth bit down onto thin air.

    The machine smoothly dodged to the side, evading another bite. The theropod roared and slammed its head forwards. The machine ducked to the right, and the theropod's head slammed into the window of a nearby building. It struggled and shook its head back and forth, sending out plaster and dust as the robot turned to and rapidly climbed up a nearby steel office building just for the occasion, using empty windowpanes as handholds. With a single motion, it backflipped off the structure.

    Simultaneously, the theropod pulled its head out of the structure and turned just as the gleaming blade passed in its vision.

    The robot dropped to a knee, sheathing the blade in the process. The theropod stumbled away to the road, knocking a streetlight down with the tail before it's lower jaw fell off with a creak from where the sword has just cut through the bottom of the skull.

    The lower jaw fell to the street with a clang. Wiring and glowing black fluid fell out from where the jaw had been. The theropod unleashed a distorted roar as it tossed it's weight forwards, upper jaw aiming for the gleaming head of the ronin-

    The right arm shot upwards, firing out a red hot shell from its muzzle.

    The explosive hit the roof of the upper jaw. The head exploded into scrap metal and black fluid, a chain with artificial teeth on it flinging out into a window with a crash behind the Ronin.

    The mechanical Megalosaurus fell back the instant the grenade detonated. It headless body now spewed out bolts and sparks.

    A loud bell ringed from around the area, signaling the end of the training match.

    This fight had began and ended in less then thirty seconds.

    The armored ronin stood up, looked at the glorified training dummy, then turned and began to walk away with a guarded pace, hands on the pommel.

    The "Crumble Zone", as this fake town was commonly called, was the proving ground of the island-based IS Academy. The academy was built for the purpose of training future Anti-Kaiju Mecha pilots, and aside from standard classrooms that poured over engineering and mechanics alongside other relevant skills, there were multiple small arenas were pilots could duel each other one on one.

    The biggest of these arenas was the aforementioned Crumble Zone, the uninhabited replica town that was used to simulate combat against hostile megafauna. Mech pilots would arrive here in practice models, small scale mechs that ranged to the size of ten meters as per regulations at the academy. Mechanical "Scrap beasts", built with simple programming and designed to look like dinosaurs and other ancient species with a height of twelve meters at the highest, would serve as opponents, with operators watching through cameras that could deactivate a glorified training bot at a moments notice if a pilot or their mech was completely incapacitated and thus "defeated."

    Students came to the CZ to test their skills and to see how they would do in a simulation of a small-scale megafauna attack. They would be graded based on damage taken to their mech, on the amount of casualties inflicted to the scrap beasts, and on collateral damage involving nearby buildings, although the third was not considered as major to the grading process as the first two.

    Established pilots, mainly experienced AKM pilots, would come here to blow off steam and to get some extra practice in.

    The pilot of the silver-faced mech was in the latter category.

    [-]

    The robotic Ronin then exited the outskirts of the fake town, emerging from the end atop a grassy hill.

    The land outside the village could not have been more different.

    Waves crashed upon outcroppings and cliffs on the massive island on the sunny day, with a large black mountain visible on the edge. Multiple silver buildings were visible from the middle of the island, all of them acting as dorms, classrooms, battle arenas and so on.

    The mecha leaned forwards to the ground, bracing itself on the grass with it's fists like a gorilla. There was a burst of steam from the back as a hatch opened, allowing the pilot to exit. A Japanese woman with long black hair tied into a somewhat spiky ponytail grabbed onto a set of handlebars just above the end of the hatch, now visible as she exited, wearing a black tank top and camouflaged cargo pants. A set of silver dog tags briefly swayed in the wind as she climbed down the mech's arm. Grabbing a water bottle strapped to a belt on her waist, she sat down on a nearby curved rock. Brown eyes looked down at the academy grounds before she tilted her head back, draining the bottle in seconds. As it crumpled, she held it and held out her wrist, reading the time on a brown watch.

    12:00 PM

    "Not bad, all things considered." She whispered aloud, wryly grinning up the side of her mouth. Within twenty minutes in the Crumble Zone, she had taken down ten different scrap monsters.

    She shook her head. "I really need to work on the times...next go I should be done earlier, five minutes of those twenty at the very least."

    As the head pilot instructor, Chifuyu Orimura's work outs had done well for her; at the age of 38, she looked to be nearly a decade younger.

    Admiral Orimura had been in the KDF for more then half her life, having voluntarily signed up at the tender at of 14 after the Jinguji Military Act was passed in 1989.

    Since then, she had worked for half a decade as a mecha pilot. She was renowned for piloting the Red Ronin AKM, one of the first mechas in the KDF's arsenal.

    Created from a nearly finished suit of thermal powered mechanical armor that was already half formed when it was dredged up from Mu's ruins in 1972, it's uncanny resemblance to red samurai armor has remained a mystery for ages. She was the second to pilot it, in an eventful career that lasted from 1991 to 1995.

    After Red Ronin was destroyed in battle at the Fall of Tokyo, Chifuyu survived to live through the following chaos that decimated half of Japan. Despite the destruction of Red Ronin, she kept on working as a member of the defense forces, acting as a drill instructor for future mecha pilots, both those piloting small scale exosuits and large AKM's. One of her biggest responsibilities was working as a professor at IS Academy, passing her veteran skills down to new generations as a strict professor whose courses were tough, but resulted in hardened, battle-ready students.

    Mainly those who didn't break from the stress of it all.

    Her other major responsibility was granted in 2005 following the Dagon War. Given the title of Admiral, she and other carefully chosen individuals would have a significant role in mecha-based operations during future kaiju incursions, specifically ones that threatened Japan and surrounding territories. Not only that, she was on the worldwide KDF Council, which consisted of high-ranking officials from militaries and governments around the world.

    Aside from meetings with her fellow high council members discussing future projects and current attacks, and with her last involvement in a large scale battle being at 2011 during the Breacher Outbreak, she usually spent the rest of her time on the island with the occasional break for a small-scale mecha fighting tournament.

    She did extract some measure of enjoyment from training her students, but at the end of the day, beyond all the strategy meetings, academic ceremonies, and council meetings, nothing beat the opportunity to enjoy a straight up round of giant metal fisticuffs.

    Walking down the hill towards her quarters, conveniently near the waters edge and the CZ, she spared a glance back at the eight meter mech she had used. Compared to the seventy five meter titan she had once piloted after falling into it's cockpit all those years ago, the small imitation built for practice on the island was no AKM regardless of how much she practiced against training mechs and other pilots with it.

    The sheer feeling of power from the original Ronin was fresh in her mind. When she was in the psionic cockpit, she felt strong enough to fight a hurricane and win.

    By punching it in the eye.

    Nearing the bottom of the hill, she tilted her head after hearing a faint clanging in the background. Down by the nearest arena, black figures flew and charged at one another, sparks flying into the air. It looks like the senior students were preparing for their final combat exams.

    Orimura's somewhat stoic countenance softened for a moment.

    Tabane, you would have loved this place.

    Fists curling, she put her emotions into check as she walked down the bottom of the hill.

    She had been killing time in the simulator, knowing that a council meeting would be coming up within half an hour.

    There were some very recent events in Saitama that needed to be discussed.

    [-]

    12:30 PM

    Okayado General Hospital, Asaka


    As someone who tended to literally fall apart often, the ceiling was not unfamiliar to Zombina when she awoke. She was sitting on a white hospital bed, a curtain drawn near the bed that obscured half the other side of the room. Judging from the sunlight streaming in from the nearby window, it was noon or remarkably close to it. There was a small coffee table next to the window.

    "Errgg...What happened?" She groaned, lifting an arm to notice that she was minus one hand. Again.

    Then the memory came back to her. Right, giant bug fight. She had been on top of on out of control truck with an overloaded truck right into it, sounded cool in her head. But damn, never did she think she'd come so close to dying. Again.

    Looking down the green hospital gown she had been put in, she noticed that it had gone flat were her legs would be. Sighing in annoyance, she pulled the side up and looked at the damage.

    The bottom of her torso was bandaged up at the space where her hips would be. Shit, that whole death charge was definitely a lot cooler in her head.

    Yep, a transfer of flesh would be needed. As a zombie, cloning her own ammonia-based biology was not as exact a science compared to the cloning of healthy flesh. As a result, it would take longer to donate her a new pair of legs and organs or to clone flesh suited for her biology.

    "After last night, at least I likely won't be lacking in dono-"

    Zombina paused when she realized that she had said that out loud and shook her head, eyes closed. "Damn that was dark, even for me-"

    "Oh? You are up? About time." Zombina blinked, leaning back as she heard feet on the ground as someone stood up behind the curtain.

    A man with cropped hair stood before her with a grey uniform, one with medals aligning the chest. He looked quite pleased with himself as he walked forwards. "You and your team performed to maximum effect! Congratulations, you all get paid leave to the islands of Hawaii for the rest of the year!'' the official said rather cheerfully, hands on his hips. Zombina looked him up and down for a moment before holding out her handless arm and flipping him off with an invisible middle finger.

    "Cut the crap Doppel." the zombie dryly said as she leaned back. The official just laughed as white hairs shot across his skin and clothing like a cocoon before pulling back, revealing the grinning form of Doppel. "Nice to see you up, princess." the doppelganger snickered. Zombina rolled her eyes, an amused grin nevertheless present.

    "Anyway-" with a yawn, "-How long was I out?"

    "Two days." Doppel said as if discussing the weather. Zombina blinked then nodded. "Alright, not much time lost then-"

    The door slammed open as a massive shape burst in. Doppel moved to the side, avoiding the lunge with a snicker.

    Zombina only had time to say "Tio?" before two massive arms wrapped around her.

    "AH Bina I was so worried when you didn't wake up! I'm so happy you're okay!" Tio shouted as she held Zombina close to her chest with such tight affection as would a mother with a newborn babe. Clad in a yellow sundress and skirt, it was hard to belief that she was the same ogre who easily crippled Giger days ago.

    "Hrrk." Zombina said.

    "Nice to see you up." The squeaking of wheels and a soft, somewhat dry voice heralded Manako's entrance. Dressed in an official looking suit and tie, she pushed a wheelchair forwards to the bed. "I knew it would be a while till a replacement for your lower half would be made so I managed to get this for you-"

    "Thanks! Hey, mind putting me down Tio?" Zombina responded in a mix between a grunt and a polite statement.

    "Sure you go!" Tio happily said, lightly plopping the zombie onto the wheelchair. Able to move her arms again, Zombina flashed a toothy grin as she tested the wheels and moved around the room in a circle. "Ah, feels nice to move again." Doppel raised an eyebrow. "Already back in action, eh Rambo?"

    Zombina looked down. "Yeah, I could probably mount some MG's on here, maybe a rocket-" She began to list off with her remaining hand, half-seriously.

    Doppel tapped the nearby desk. "Are you seriously thinking of going back to the field after that crazy stunt you pulled off?" At this point all three standing MON members looked to one another. Manako sighed and averted her gaze to the ground while Tio turned to Zombina with a serious frown.

    "Doppel's right, Bina! You could have been hurt a lot worse after crashing into that bug!" Zombina blinked in surprise. "I never actually thought about that. I figured I'd be okay, ya know? I mean we've always gone through crazy stuff like this, I knew what I was doing, I figured I'd come out okay like always, and it worked after all, right?" She stated, pausing several times as if considering just how close she may have gone to a second death.

    "Why not tell us you were planning to stay on the jeep, then?" Manako asked, rare sharpness in her voice as her eye narrowed.

    Damn, this really was serious.

    Zombina tilted her head. "Well, uh, I figured I'd survive inamatterofspeaking whatever happened as usual." Seeing their gazes fully turn to her, she quickly finished, "I didn't want to worry you guys. I knew you don't like seeing me get shredded in a fight, and we really didn't have time to start an argument over my strategy with that thing getting closer to the inner city."

    There was a pause for some time.

    Zombina sighed and leaned her head forwards. "I'm...just sorry, okay? I didn't think it would be that bad, I really did." She gestured to her bandaged lower torso. "I'm still here, right? We survived. We completed the mission, there's that at least."

    Another pause.

    Doppel smirked, showing off her fangs. "Not bad, commando. Nice speech." Manako spoke up next, shaking her head. "Alright but remember. We're a team, we should still trust each other."

    "Awww, Tio loves you all!" With a happy squeal, she picked up Manako and Doppel in another big hug, thankfully not picking them up like toys this time.

    "You guys are pretty cool to me to." Zombina chuckled, turning to face the window when she hard a faint noise. Sounded like a ton of voices at once. She quickly moved the wheelchair forwards in curiosity. "Eh? What now, some kinda protest-Woah!"

    Outside the window, a sizable crowd had grown around the area. Human residents stood or sat around, with more then a few liminal homestays. A blue feathered harpy was hanging upside down from a tree, seeming to laugh as she watched the proceedings below. What looked to be a blue slime wearing a yellow raincoat was hanging with her, imitating her with a curious look on her face.

    There was no violence going on; this was not a riot. Everyone was just walking around, holding up signs or looking around with binoculars. What was going-

    That's when Zombina noticed the words written on the signs.

    Hail the MONster slayers!

    One Punch Ogre

    Thank you MON!

    Zombina X Blaster Rifle OTP

    Jeep-Kun RIP


    Zombina stared as the realization came to her. "I haven't seen a crowd this big since we fought those Orc's. Is this for us?"

    Doppel stepped up right next to her, a genuine smile on her face. "Say hello to the official Monster Ops fan club. Fight went straight to the Internet after it got on the news. You should really see the memes. These people have been here since you were brought in, basically wanting to know how we're doin, mainly you since it got out that you were here. I'd call them stalkers, but they haven't done anything aside from stand there, so who knows?"

    Doppel shrugged and waved back at one of the people down below, one holding a Doppel GTA MVP labeled sign. Said person, a girl with braided black hair shook her head and blinked, as if wondering if she had imagined that or not.

    Doppel snickered and snuck back down, flicking her hair as she sat below the window.

    Zombina squinted as she leaned in, observing as cranes mounted with welders travelled in a line down the road. "Looks like property repairs are going well. This city is recovering fast."

    "Kind of engrained in the local culture." Doppel explained, shrugging.

    Manako silently observed the proceedings. "It's actually really nice to have people respect us for our hard work but-" She shrunk down next to Doppel, blushing madly as her eye watered. "I can barely go out without anyone recognizing me as MON's sniper." She wiped her eye with a nearby tissue. It's so embarrassing! I'm not used to this kind of attention."

    Tio giggled and sat down as best as the tall woman could, gently patting Manako on the head. "There, there. Tio's actually pretty excited. Some of my favorite stores have been talking about giving me a "Hero discount" because I attract so many new customers." Tio beamed proudly at that before turning to Zombina. "Did you hear that, Bina? We're being called heroes!"

    Zombina paused, stroking her chin with her stitched-up arm. "Heroes, huh?"

    Then, turning to her squad, she grinned widely. "I can get used to that."

    Doppel turned out a toothy grin of her own as she raised her a hand in a rocker's two fingered salute. "Heh, I can dance to that, Red."

    For the next half hour, they talked like it was just another day at HQ.

    [-]

    Also 12:30 PM

    Cultural Exchange Security Headquarters


    Today was not a good day to be Coordinator Kuroko Smith.

    The woman sat at a desk, glasses hiding the bags under her tired eyes. Her hair was pulled into a long tail to make it slightly easier to maintain and to hide its current messy state. She held up a phone as she drummed through messages on her computer. No matter how small, a giant monster attack didn't end with its death.

    Property damage had to be paid off, contractors and construction crews called in, ones who usually were on standby and had longstanding partnerships with the KDF. Recompense for damaged property would be offered if for those able to afford it, usually by the related subdivisions of the KDF and Cultural Exchange. Wreckage and debris had to be cleaned up for rebuilding. Those injured but alive would be taken to hospitals would have to be taken care of while replacement organs or limbs were cloned, with some taking months or even a year due to the sheer amount of people injured. Those displaced would be appointed to KDF approved shelters if they had no relatives or friends to take them in.

    The corpse of the monster had to be dealt with, with potential diseases, parasites, bioradiation, and other hazards requiring the corpse to be secured quickly. Bits and organs were chipped off piece by piece and transported out of the city in convoys of trucks or lifted out by cargo aircraft built specifically for the purpose. The remains would be kept inland in a containment facility for study or shipped out to sea, where island bases would hold the remains like graveyards. Giger, while on the small size, was being lifted by five different helicopters out to sea, the streets cleared in their path ahead. A carrier ship was on its way to a dock at Chiba where Giger's burnt out shell would be taken off to some blacksite with a name beyond her paygrade.

    Humanoid deaths had to be counted and shipped to the morgue and funeral homes, with foreign nationals and tourists having to have their bodies moved far back to their homelands with all the bureaucracy that entailed.

    Bodies needed to be identified. Families and spouses would be informed, door to door if need be when call centers got overwhelmed. This was the worst part of the job.

    "-yes, the gym will be able to open once repairs finish by next Friday, yes you are welcome Ms. Polt-" Smith sighed and set the phone down, quickly proceeding to drain another mug of coffee. Damn, just when this job couldn't get anymore taxing, her status as coordinator got her the majority of the paper work since extraspecies were involved, to say nothing of her sanctioned operation involving MON.

    Another phone, this one her personnel device, rang in her pocket. Grumbling to herself, she pulled it out without checking who it was with an annoyed, "Who is this and how did you get this number-"

    "Sorry to make you cross Kuro, I didn't mean to startle ya." A British-accented voice replied, full of mirth despite sounding aged and thick. Smith blinked, now a bit straighter. "Dad? I, uh, didn't expect you at this hour." she said, pleasantly surprised to hear a familiar voice for once. She could imagine the older man standing on the deck of his boat on the surface of the Bering Sea, trying to get a signal to her.

    "I'm sorry if I interrupted anything, I know you are very busy these days-"

    Smith checked her computer list. Most filed claims had already been gone through while the next telephone call would be scheduled in two hours. She had time for once.

    With the dangerous world they lived in, you had no way of knowing if one call with someone would be your last.

    "Actually, I'm free for a little while if you want to talk."

    Her family admitably was very busy. George Smith was a crab fisherman, a job as dangerous as any other profession involving shipping due to the aquatic megafauna living in the oceans, especially those from the Panthalassa Sea below Eurasia. While most known entrances had been frozen over or collapsed, there was still a big enough Megalodon and Mosasaur population to be worried about. The entrance to the Panthalassa in the Bering Sea was most concerning, even if there had been no major attacks since it was sealed in 1995.

    Her mother, Hanako, worked as a day trader at Hokkaido, a job she had held for decades. Her brother John also worked in a job involving human/liminal relations, but where she worked for an official organization, John-

    ...The less said about John's definition of cultural exchange, the better.

    "Lovely. Kuro, I mostly wanted to check in because I heard about what happened in Saitama on the radio. Something about a giant lice attack while I was checking the local kaiju alert. Are you alright?" There was concern behind the casual tone in his voice. Smith was quick to answer. "Don't worry old man, I'm fine-" She looked at the crumpled papers and empty mugs around the room, "-relatively, if you don't count all the paperwork and repairs I have to deal with now that the monster is dead." A chuckle came from the other line, and she nearly found herself copying it. "Yeah, that's definitely the kind of thing your mother would be mad over too, but you'll get through like ya always have." Smith decided to put in her two cents. "The operation to kill it went almost without a hitch, for once." Except for Zombina, she thought. She could almost imagine her father nodding at the other end. "That sounds very interesting. I'd love to hear about it when we both have breaks-" A groaning sound could be heard from the other side alongside the roaring of waves. "Bloody hells, I think there's a storm comin'. Looks like we're cuttin' this short, Kuro. Sorry about that." Smith smiled slightly before responding. "It's no trouble, old man. Believe me, after days and nights staying up to fill out these reports, I'm content to get a call from someone who isn't asking how to fill out insurance for a crushed taxi." George laughed from the other side. "I'm happy to hear that. See ya later, Kuro."

    "You too, man." She said, new life in her veins as he hung up. Smith stood up and sighed as stretched her arms. Hopefully, everyone would be home for the holidays. Come to think of it, it would be nice if she could introduce her parents to MON. That one host, Kurusu had a rather spacious place, surely he wouldn't mind letting them all gather there for a day or two-

    That's when she remembered. Oh right, I have another meeting in the before my next set of calls-

    Remembering the exact nature of the soon to occur meeting, Kuroko swore under her breath and pulled a buttoned up black jacket on, rushing out the door to the other side of the building.

    [-]

    While her superiors in the KDF transferred her to the CE for God knows why, she still reported to the former occasionally. Usually it was about maintaining security around Asaka and other nearby cities where liminals were living as part of the program. Having only gone through three meetings so far, she would have found it monotonous if not for the exact nature of her superiors.

    She was to report to the KDF Council itself: Effectively the main governing body of the worldwide organization, one with ten representatives from armed forces around the world. They had the last say on missions and on decisions regarding known kaiju, living or dead.

    They had wanted to discuss the conduct of local CE security forces during the fight with Giger.

    If there was any consolation, she only had to deal with five members of the council at this meeting as specified in the message given to her. These five were the ones known for having the most interest and connection to Japanese defense forces through their careers, while the other six were either too busy in their own duties to make time, or did not find the events in Asaka to be important to their current defense plans.

    She could only hope for the best, straightening her jacket and posture as she walked to a keypad locked steel door. Opening it with her Coordinator license, she entered the room.

    The Council Meeting Room was a spacious place on the other side of the CE building. It was a long rectangular room, hologram projectors on the walls allowing members from a continent away to still contribute. An ovular plastic table was surrounded by up to twenty chairs for any delegates in the meetings.

    She had gotten there just in time, slipping into a swivel seat as five lights shined from the wall mounted projectors. Five holographic images were projected onto the chairs around the table, occasional blue flickering showing that the technology was not perfected.

    Likely because most of it went to coffee and property reconstruction.

    The projected forms of the council members turned to her. As a woman who had stared down sea monsters on foot, Smith nevertheless felt some amount of nervousness in front of these veterans as she tried not to show it.

    [-]

    Admiral Chifuyu Orimura, living legend, was wearing a captain's long black overcoat, something not uncommon in those of higher rank. She sat with her arms crossed, looking both serious and nonchalant at the same time. This could bode for good or bad tidings ahead.

    American General John McCain sat at the front of the table as the oldest member of the council, his white naval uniform ironed out and proper over his form as he adjusted a pair of glasses with one hand while smoothing over some papers, ones also rendered holographic.

    The seventy-eight year old white haired man had served as a naval pilot during the Vietnam War. In 1967, his plane would crash after being caught in Rodan's path during the first Vietnamese Kaiju Incursion, where he notably survived a fall into a lake and a close encounter with North Vietnamese forces, survival that he would later attribute to them being too busy retreating to care about taking prisoners.

    After his tour ended, McCain was quick to join the fledgling Kaiju Defense Force. Since then, he had risen through the ranks and was known for his steep criticism of missions or plans he thought to be foolhardy. After the disastrous failure of Operation: Titanomachy, he was among the first to advocate the arrests and trials of the leading personnel involved and has since then tried to moderate rash or unprovoked destruction from the KDF during new situations. He helped lead the defense of North America's coasts during the Dagon War and the Breacher Outbreak, and has been involved in naval operations since then.

    In another life and time, he would be the kind of man to run for president.

    Admiral David Enfield of England sat with his palms crossed, wearing a black and white suit and tie. His black trimmed mustache sat proudly on his face along side the white cap upon his head with a gold-lined Union Jack in the middle of it.

    The forty-nine year old British man had a family history of military service dating back to the first World War. Enfield had followed in his forefathers footsteps by joining the Royal Navy, only to transfer to the KDF after the extraterrestrial Dogora's attack on England in 1993.

    He received a rapid increase in promotions following his conduct during the Dagon War in 2004, managing to lead a rapid response during the attack on London as well as coordinating the response in Lisbon. He was now in charge of much of Europe's aquatic defenses, and was in charge of the European Extraspecies Reveal conference, giving him a prominent role in Britain's own homestay program.

    Adjusting a thick grey overcoat, Russia's representative Colonel Timur Reznov sat down, faint droppings of snow on his coat and gloves indicating that he had recently been outside. He pulled down a thick black hood and scarf, revealing his bald head and the bushy brown mustache above his lip. Small scars and marks lined the sides of his face, making the tall, well-built man of fifty years look a decade older.

    Reznov silently looked around the circle to all individuals involved. He was a captain in Russia's armed forces during the kaiju battle that caused the collapse of the old Soviet Union in 1990. As one of the few surviving high-ranking personnel left alive after Moscow was abandoned, he was chosen by the surviving government to be their representative on the KDF Council following the resignation of his predecessor in 1995. Reznov has since then used his position to reinforce Russia's coasts in the event of future attacks.

    While there hadn't been any significant kaiju trouble in Russia since 1998, the Oil Breach resulted in an attack of the coast of Vladivostok due to its proximity to the Pacific Ocean, where forces under his command managed to beat back a pack of shark like breachers with heavy weaponry with only moderate property damage. Aside from taking a heavy role in the development of infantry weaponry and armor, rumor had it then he has a tense relationship with Russia's current administration, specifically with Acting President Vladmir Putin.

    The youngest council member here was Commander Ishaan Ahuja of the Indian Subcontinent, a clean shaven man aged thirty four. He wore a buttoned up white suit, one that contrasted with the red beret upon his head, dark hair slightly peeking out from under it.

    He joined the council four years ago, with his credentials coming from his leading of troop movements and defenses during the last weeks of the Dagon War. He was known for his heavy interest in the use of mecha units as potential energy sources and laborers, especially India's Gandiva. While the Mech itself was perfectly serviceable after being found buried in a mountainside, much was not known about it once it was reverse engineered into a weapon aside an apparent hardcoding in the machine to protect human life by whatever long dead civilization that had made it.

    With relatives in India's bustling clean energy industry and his keen understanding of engineering, he has often been accused of trying to push an agenda by those outside the organization.

    Nevertheless, during the recent breacher attacks he had proven a competent leader of ground infantry and was strict in making in ensuring a weekly maintenance for all weapons used by his troops.

    [-]

    Enfield announced the start of the meeting. "Lovely to see everyone here. Now let's start on the fact of the matter. Exactly how did the creature get into the city undetected?" He spoke calmly, as if discussing the newspaper. Chifuyu spoke up, slightly more serious in her tone. "It was a Shockirus parasite, one that grew far beyond it's normal size. Known specimens of normal size barely give off low body heat due to their physiology. Through that feature it could have avoided any sensors. We also cannot discount possible sabotage or human error with the river sensors." Enfield nodded politely before continuing with his own response.

    "If so, sensors or no sensors a creature that size should still have been noticed in some way. How did it get from the quarantine zone to the middle of a populated area so quickly?"

    "You saw the footage and the reports, David. It got in through the river." McCain replied, shuffling some papers on his desk from a continent away.

    Chifuyu was the one added onto his point. "The Fall caused multiple earthquakes that opened up large pathways across the area. Sea water flooded in, creating large new river channels that fed into existing saltwater rivers in the bay, including the Edo and Kanda rivers. These new radioactive rivers lead close to the freshwater rivers out of the city but do not feed directly into them, due to our efforts to prevent contamination beyond Tokyo. Giger could have used these rivers to travel away from the quarantine zone and into the Arakawa. Speaking of that, we should start checking for any contamination in the river."

    As someone who had been born and raised in Tokyo, and who had been present right then and there when the incident happened, Orimura's ability to keep her usual composure was impressive. McCain and David nodded before turning to Smith-something she'd been hoping would come later. "Coordinator Smith, speaking from your experience as a Captain of the Kaiju Defense Forces, what opinions can you offer on the matter?" Enfield asked politely. Smith took a moment to wish herself luck before replying.

    "That is still being investigated, but I have given diving teams the authorization to place new sensors in river, both the sections leading into the city and in the middle of it. We won't be able to cover the whole river, but I can ensure that we will have an early warning if another escapee from the zone shows up."

    "Excellent work, Captain." Enfield said, grinning slightly while McCain concurred with an "I agree. As a matter of fact, I plan to authorize an extermination for a Monster Kill Crew with at least four M-Raptors into the Tokyo area after the New Year to make sure there will at least be a few less of the larger creatures. We won't get every last one, but we'll get what we can."

    Smith swore she would have missed it if she blinked, but Orimura have the slightest nod of approval from her chair.

    "Moving on," McCain began, "First responders did the best they could. For all they irritated it, they did manage to lure away its attention until your squad could get into place. I must say-" He turned to Smith, elbow on the desk and hand on his chin, "-They did exceptionally well for their first rodeo. I have to hand it to you, they were trained very well."

    Perhaps the meeting wasn't turning out as bad as she'd expected it.

    Oddly quiet at the meeting so far, Reznov cleared his throat, echoing through his holo’s speakers before he turned to Ahuja, who was holding a calculator and looking over some information. "Now that we have discussed the how and why of the attack.... it is time to talk on aftermath. Ahuja?" Ah, now this was what she had been dreading.

    The Indian man sat his calculator down, pulling on a pair of clear glasses as he looked down at a flickering sheet strewn with numbers. "Property damage: 97,649,838.10 in yen. Deaths: Twenty-nine in civilians and armed responders combined. Injuries: thirty-six in terms of those admitted to hospitals for trampling, proximity to falling infrastructure, and to one account of a homemade explosive device. Overall-" He set the paper down, everyone on the council turning to look at Smith.

    "-A minor loss and a relatively quick victory. You have done well, agent." Ahuja said, approval in his eyes as he lightly bowed his head forwards in acknowledgement.

    Smith, internally jumping with excitement over how well things were going, managed to keep a neutral expression on her face as she nodded. "I was doing my job as well as I could, sir."

    It was best to be honest.

    "As am I, Captain." McCain began, "-Because your MON squad's performance has been noted by many prominent individuals and organization. Monarch in particular has expressed wishes to contact them." Smith frowned at that. While the organizations had worked together in the past, Monarch and the KDF both had as many rivalries as they had good relations. Part of this had to do with two very different stances on the issue of the giant monster.

    But what could an organization of biologists and radiologists want with the team? "To what end, General?"

    "According to our contacts, they have displayed interest in inviting MON's Saitama Division onto a new expedition of theirs. Something about a new megafauna habitat."

    Smith resisted the urge to get out of her seat and go to the Hospital to see said team as she made her next response. "I see. I was not made aware of this beforehand." This time it was Orimura who spoke up. "At ease, Captain. Monarch will be working with us to deliver information to your door after the meeting is over regarding the situation. They will also be sending an agent to make an offer regarding the expedition to your squad in person. Should they agree, they can leave the expedition contract at any time as long as they disclose no confidential information."

    That was a slight relief. Hearing it from one of the people who inspired her to first join the KDF years ago was also a good confidence booster. "I see. What day will the agent be arriving?"

    Reznov drummed a finger on his desk, lightly coughing. "Ah, my apologies Captain. We were all busy with our own schedules before the meeting began, so forgive us if we should have mentioned this fact at the start. The agent will not be arriving in the future because he is already here."

    "In fact, the agent is likely entering the hospital as we speak. My apologies for the inconvenience."

    [-]

    MON's time together was interrupted by a sudden knocking on the door. "Hello, may I please come in?" was asked by a thick, but calm voice from the other side. All four members looked to one another before shrugging. "Probably just a doctor here to check up on you." Doppel offered to Zombina.

    "Door's open, feel free." Zombina called.

    The door opened, and in stepped a local looking man dressed in a simple black coat over a white buttoned up shirt. The Asian man had a thin mustache and a visible shadow of a beard, a brief flicker of excitement in his eyes as he entered and caught sight of them, before his look faded back into one of calm professionalism. He held a black folder in his hands while a barcoded tag hung over his shirt, attached to a black cord around his neck.

    The man paused and cleared his throat before setting down the folder on top of a nearby table. As he turned and politely bowed, they likely thought that he was one of Smith's people until Doppel and Zombina's eyes caught the image of a symbol on the folder.

    A horizontal white hour glass.

    Zombina and Doppel shared the briefest of glances before the man spoke, confirming their new suspicions.

    "My name is Ishiro Serizawa. I am a biologist working with-"

    "Monarch, eh?" Doppel finished, arms crossed with an amused look on her face as she and Serizawa finished the word at the same time.

    Serizawa turned his head, looking her up and down for a moment before nodding in agreement. "Indeed. You are as sharp as the reports say you are, Ms. Doppel." He dryly said before turning to the rest of MON. Tio's eyes brightened as she held a hand up. "Oh! Monarch! You are the guys who dig up giant bones, right?" Serizawa nodded, never raising his tone. "That is one of Monarch's many duties. I am glad to find some enthusiasm here today. After all, -" He sat down at the table, crossing his legs, "-my colleagues and I have been interested in contacting you four for a while." The rest of MON did the same as he did, sitting at the table in front of him.

    When in Rome, of course. Lacking legs, Zombina shrugged and simply rolled her wheelchair a bit to the front.

    While they were not as prominent worldwide as a conglomerate military like the KDF, Monarch was still a major organization in the current era. Where other organizations focused on combatting kaiju, Monarch was focused on studying then. "Discovery and Defense" was the motto, with the organization being known for digging up fossils of long dead super species to compare them to living megafauna as Tio had said. The organization also dealt with seismograph readings to determine if a living kaiju was responsible for an underground movement, collected and analyzed biological samples, and studied kaiju behavior both in the wild and in controlled environments like the Monster Islands that would then be incorporated into battle strategies.

    The obvious question was what the organization wanted with them.

    Serizawa continued speaking. "You all did very well during the unexpected attack that occurred two days ago. You took out Giger as quickly as possible in the time you had. You saved many lives during your first major encounter with a kaiju." He finished.

    Zombina scratched the back of her head. "So is that what you're here for? To interview us about the bug hunt?"

    Serizawa shook his head, a slight smile on his face that quickly vanished. "No. That will be the duty of your superiors. I'm here to offer you an... opportunity. One that will begin in the summer." Comprehension dawned in the mismatched eyes of Zombina and the rest of Mon. "You want to give us a job."

    Serizawa nodded. "To make sure no misunderstandings are created, I shall explain it to you." He reached for the folder and opened it. "This will be temporary, only a few months at most. The choice to join is completely voluntary on your part. You are also not the only ones being offered this opportunity." Doppel leaned to the right with a sardonic grin. "Really now?"

    "Specialists, both human and liminal like you four, are currently being given similar offers. We have been looking for individuals with unique skill sets for an operation. My superiors took an interest when MON was founded a year ago, and due to your continued successful operations, you were put on a list of possible applicants." Serizawa paused, moving the papers around. "You're successful fight with Giger has convinced them to move you four up on their meeting list and as a result, I am here now to make the offer-"

    "Cut to the point man, we're burning daylight." Doppel snarked, causing even Zombina to role her eyes. There was a time and place for that behavior, even if this kind of talk could get boring.

    Instead of being offended by the interruption, Serizawa simply nodded once more. "Understood. I am here to offer you the chance to come and work on an expedition to a recently discovered habitat."

    The statement sunk in rather quickly. Zombina leaned forwards with a grin. "You want us to go monster hunting there? I can get down with that!" Serizawa shook his head. "This is a mission of exploration, not extermination. However, feel free to join the security team once it is formed. There will likely be some form of danger on the mission. Having skilled agents like you will likely alleviate it should you decide to join. Here, this is where the expedition will take place..."

    Serizawa pulled out four photos out of the folder and tossed them on the desk. They depicted a blue rocky background with red glowing splotches randomly spaced around each image.

    Thermal imaging came to their minds.

    Serizawa confirmed this. "These are thermal images taken from above a recently discovered trench, one leading into one of the deepest underwater caves known to man. The images giving off thermal energy are believed to be from either living organisms or from intense radiation hotspots. This photograph was based on a successful seismograph reading of the deeper parts that we do not have access to yet."

    "Radiation?" Manako asked, worry in her tone. Serizawa turned to her. "This habitat was found five years ago, but the levels of intense radiation inside have made access impractical and dangerous until now. New radiation-resistant metals and technology have been developed for decades to allow safer underwater access. I can assure that if you join the mission, the base will be heavily shielded against much of the natural radiation down there."

    To punctuate this, he laid down a picture, one underwater and slightly blurry. It depicted a close view of a cylindrical metal structure, one dotted by windows and lights as it sat supported by four heavy looking metal pillars near the edge of dark trench. "This is one of the most advanced undersea outposts in the world, constructed for the sake of this mission."

    "What makes the trench so special?" Zombina asked, leaning forwards. "Oh! Tio wants to know too!" said you know who.

    Serizawa paused as he reached into the folder, rummaging for a new photo. "This trench and the extensive cavern system, of which we are still mapping, is heavily classified, and shall only be revealed to potential members of the expedition like you. Participants are expected to keep what they know private until it is cleared for public release-" It was almost as if he was reciting a script.

    Zombina decided to cut in. "I get it, whatever's living down there is a big deal, and you don't want the information getting out because it will cause unrest or something, right?" She stated, grinning wryly.

    Serizawa blinked before nodding, seeming to approve. "I never did like the constant disclaimers I'm ordered to say aloud during meetings like these, so I suppose I can make an exception and cut to the chase, as they say." He paused, straightened his coat, then dropped the bombshell.

    "This underwater cavern system is believed to be a territory belonging to Godzilla."

    The effect was immediate.

    "G-Godzilla?" Manako gasped out, shaking for a moment at the realization.

    Tio looked at the others in concern as Doppel straightened, an unusually serious look in her eyes as she digested this.

    Zombina gripped the side of her wheelchair as she leaned forwards, now very invested. "I figure that explains all that radiation down there. Are your people absolutely sure that this is his home?" Serizawa quickly responded. "Yes. While Godzilla has been known to cross oceans, these caves are likely his main den or nest. We have heavy amounts of proof that he has been in this area for a long time." Serizawa dropped a new set of pictures on the table.


    The first appeared to be from the perspective of an undersea rover or sub in the dark abyss, one that was hovering in front of the entrance to a circular titan-sized hole. Craggy stalagmites stuck out from the sides of the hole, almost like the fangs of some long dead creature.

    A large, four fingered claw print lay on the upper left of side of the black stone at the entrance, as if something had gripped it years before.

    Another photo, this one further in the cave, showed the lights of the rover illuminating a crater with four triangular protrusions at the front of it embedded in the rock floor, kelp growing around it.

    A footprint.

    The third picture was lain with static, likely due to increasing radiation levels. The photo seemed to depict an opening to yet another hole within the cavern, with the rover on the edge of a cliff. Sharp-edged shapes like the imprint of jagged maple leaves could be seen at a wall a good amount of meters away, the imprints visible with their sheer size and focus under the rovers lights.

    The next photo was the final one. It showed the shadow of what was revealed to be a brick-shaped submarine. Light streamed in from behind it, hinting that this was near the entrance of the cave or that more submarines were behind it.

    But what got the most attention was the object in the center: A yellow curved tooth tangled in kelp, one a meter long at the very least.

    Serizawa leaned back, his neutral expression now deadly serious. "We tested the tooth's marrow with our best equipment when it was brought to the surface. Alongside some shed skin samples we found, it is a near perfect match for Godzilla's DNA. Radiocarbon dating has shown the tooth to be nearly as old half-century at least, but perhaps it may even be older than the time before his emergence in 1954. Since we have yet to fully map the area, there are likely more caves and features in the den that we are unaware of."

    Zombina was quick to respond, managing to look incredulous and amused at the same time. "So let me get this straight, you want us to go into old Godzilla's house and...ransack it?" That was her first assumption, one made on impulse with what she knew.

    Serizawa shook his head far more rapidly this time. "No, no. Nothing of the sort. The plan for the expedition is simple. We will use radiation resistant drones to map out the rest of the caverns in the trench. Then, the plan is to send a manned team into the area to continue the expedition in specialized hazard-resistant armor."

    "So that's where we come in." Tio said with an edge to her voice, eyes gleaming. Serizawa nodded in confirmation. "This is why you are on the list of those chosen for skills and unique..." He paused with a brief look at Zombina and Tio. "...physiologies. We need experienced agents like you for the true objectives of this operation."

    "And what would that be?" Doppel asked, hands crossed.

    "Aside from general discovery of the rest of the cavern, the main objective is to find the chamber or tunnel most frequented by Godzilla, preferably an area where he sleeps for long periods of time. Then, if possible, this area will have camera's planted in it for future observation of Godzilla in his natural habitat. The other objective will be to plant a tracking device onto one of his dorsal spines while evading his notice."

    Doppel stood up quickly, a hand rising out of her white hair. "Now hold up, are you saying that Monarch is not just planning to crawl around the big guy's home while he's away, but is actually gonna wait for him to come back and then plant a bug-one that can be broken by a single lightshow from his back-all without him knowing or noticing anything? Are you people on crack?"

    Serizawa frowned, leaning up slightly to match Doppel's newfound seriousness. "I will not deny the fact that there will be danger. Our last record of a Godzilla sighting was near Australia this September, and we have no way of knowing when and if he will come back to this area or how long he's been away. With the thermal readings we have, there will also likely be other species within to worry about. Deep sea creatures that have evolved through generations in the same highly radioactive environment that Godzilla lives in, and who will likely not react well to intrusion. Please understand that much funding has been put into place for this project to ensure the safety of all involved at the base and at the caverns-"

    "I'm in." Zombina said with a rare calm as every head in the room turned to her. "An opportunity like this is one of those things that's once in a lifetime, er, unlife," she stammered for a moment, "Eh you know what I'm saying! But if Godzilla likes this place so much, there's bound to be something really important down there." She said with an eagerness you could only see in her mid-firefight.

    "Oh! If Bina's going so is Tio!" The ogre shouted, fist pumping into the air.

    Manako seemed to come to a silent conclusion, looking up. "I go where my squad goes...if you were willing to trust us enough share such confidential information right here, it would be rude if I at least didn't take you up on the offer for a little while and see how it goes."

    Serizawa's eyes widened as if touched by the sudden enthusiasm.

    Doppel looked back and forth between her squad before sighing and raising her hand. "Ah Hell, not like I had any vacation plans. I'm coming with them!"

    Serizawa's eyes said everything if one looked very closely. "Thank you all so much for accepting this offer. Here are some important papers..."

    Serizawa handed out four pens as he rummaged through the last sheaf in his black folder. "These are to certify that you are joining the expedition, sign here and there, understand that Monarch can direct you to training centers for diving lessons and submersible classes. The expedition is planned to last from July to August, so please get any affairs in order if you can. You will be asked multiple times if still want to join over the next year if you have any thoughts...yes, I will be contacting your coordinator regarding this matter, it may be a good idea for you to do the same...alright, finished. Thank you all for your time."

    It was done within ten minutes.

    Standing up with the signed papers, Serizawa bowed and began to head for the door. Zombina, remembering an earlier scene, immediately raised a hand. "Hey Doc, what's the name of that underwater base we saw?"

    Pausing to turn the knob, Serizawa answered as he looked back.

    "We call it Nautilus One."

    [-]

    As discourse continued in the meeting room and neared its end, Smith frowned when she noticed something out of place.

    One of the seats for the council was empty. In the rush to get here and get the meeting done, she had overlooked it.

    While this individual had excluded himself before in meetings not directly related to current kaiju attacks on the mainland, it seemed odd that he wasn't here now considering the nature of Giger's attack.

    Smith pushed herself up from her seat, hands on her side of the desk. Permission to speak freely was granted as the serious parts of the meeting died down. "Excuse me asking if there is something I am unaware of, but where is Commander Gordon? Considering that Asaka is a landlocked city that was caught unaware by the incursion, wouldn't he logically all over a breach like this?"

    A pause went through the five leaders.

    The men turned their eyes to one another in the briefest but nevertheless telling of glances.

    Orimura was as composed as ever.

    Reznov held his hands together as he slowly turned to Smith, new steel in his gaze.

    "Commander Gordon is on a confidential mission, one that will be publically disclosed should he succeed. I'm sure you understand the need for such secrecy."

    [-]

    [X:XX] PM

    The Atlantic Ocean

    [CLASSIFIED], 663 meters below the surface


    Within the depths of the deep oceanic trench, what little light existed was hidden under clouds of black and white smoke vented by hydrothermal vents lining the sides.

    Nevertheless, the black undersea battleship and the gleaming silver drill on its nose moved and whirled with ease through the veritable maze of smokers and rocky outcroppings. The drill and the three prongs on its tip broke through a plume of black smoke, causing it to billow around the ship like a dark cloak. The black armor of the ship had the occasional singe mark on its many armored plates. Two lines on the left and right of the ship began to glow a bright red as it drew in energy from a highly advanced reactor in the back.

    It was going to need that extra power very soon.

    Hatches on the sides of the ship lay closed, missiles and other weaponry ready to be deployed at a moment’s notice. Four lights on the bottom illuminated the darkness around it. Packs of albino squids swarmed below the light before scattering as the ship got closer.

    A black structure was attached to the middle of the uppermost layer of the ship, emerging outwards like a submarine's conning tower.

    This was the bridge, the main control center for the infamous Gotengo, an all-purpose battleship and staple of the KDF. Having survived numerous highly destructive battles since its first deployment in the 1970's alongside further events despite a tentative status as a prototype, the ship was jointly shared between the UN and KDF as needed.

    With experience in sailing through all the known oceans, the ship and her experienced crew were ideal for the mission at hand.

    The command center was colored a dark silver across the walls and ceilings with grated flooring. Technicians wearing blue and black jumpsuits frantically typed at computers while men and women wearing the silver plated armor of the KDF's infantry sat at gun emplacements to the left and right that would control the missile turrets mounted on the exterior of the ship.

    At the center of the bridge, overlooking a group of tech's at their computer and radar stations, the commander was seated.

    Douglas Gordon was a man whose steely, serious eyes reflected his years of experience. His buff and honed body was barely hidden by the black buttoned coat he wore, one he had kept since the day he was promoted to Captain decades ago. A curved fossilized tooth hung from his neck.

    He tilted up his head, dark commander's cap and bushy mustache as thick as his expression as he stared ahead at a console at the center of the room that displayed a gridlined 360 degree overview of the battlefield. The Gotengo was represented by a red computer generated image in the middle of the simulated area.

    Time for a last minute checkup.

    Gordon got up from his chair, the center surrounded by consoles and screens as he walked to the front. He overlooked the crew in front of his "office" before speaking up. "Is the Absolute Zero Cannon working?" he gruffly asked. "Fully charged, sir!" he heard a voice shout, one with the bravado that came with youth. Ensign Mori, from Italy, he idly thought.

    Nodding slightly, he turned to the right set of consoles. "Artillery?" he asked once more. He saw a familiar spiky haired youth in armor shifting near a console by his turret as he turned to read the data. Private Ozaki Shinichi, a man who had passed boot camp at the top of his class. "Both particle and missile pods are reporting as fully functional, commander." he replied coolly.

    Gordon accepted it, idly noting that Shinichi would have his recommendation if he kept his cool during the coming fight.

    Within a minute, all other systems were confirmed to be at or near 100%.

    Gordon then turned to a man and a woman wearing uniforms like the technicians, sitting in wheelchairs at a large console behind his chair as he walked over to it. "How are our associates doing?" he asked.

    Both had finished speaking into a pair of radio's mounted on a grey console in a foreign, slick sounding language before looking up to him, briefly flustered before speaking one at a time with distinctly Mediterranean accents. "The troops from the Kelmushi Kingdom have prepared the water pressure bombs at the trap point above the trench. They will be detonated on your command." the man said, slicking back his red hair with a webbed hand. The women, her blueish hair done into a braided knot rare in official military capacities if not for the unique situation, spoke up herself, wiping some wet perspiration from her forehead as she did so. "The Brine Kingdom squads have managed to apply more explosives to the surrounding stone formations. Once the target is at the capture point, they will be detonated when it is properly incapacitated by the absolve-Err, sorry I meant Absolute Zero Cannon-" She awkwardly pushed the wheels of her wheelchair, moving herself back from her console for a moment.

    Below her humanoid waist, a red scaled lower half tapered off into a yellow tail fin.

    Gordon sighed and shook his head at the sheer greenness of the civilians. Yes, they were Merfolk nobility acting in a military capacity in one of the first joint human-extraspecies operations, but from the way they were acting they were still civilians to the core with how easily they were flustered by minor breach's in decorum.

    These two dignitaries were essentially shoved to him by his superiors, something about fostering communications between the KDF and Atlantic Mer kingdoms for the mission. He looked back to them as they quickly yet awkwardly slid back into place at their consoles.

    Nobles from the way they carry themselves, but not used to military matters. He idly thought once more. He'd barely gotten their names, Nestor and Niko respectively two days ago. Nevertheless, they adjusted well enough to the physical part of the job, it was just their attitudes and constant nervousness that annoyed him, a man who preferred his crew to be as tight and battle ready as himself.

    Nevertheless, they would hopefully be out of his hair once the mission was over after they had serving their vital role: Communicating with their respective Merfolk species in their native languages for the duration of the operation.

    No-one wanted to risk the damage failed communication could have for the following plan, one that had to be followed closely by just about everyone involved with little room for error.

    By then, Gordon turned back to the console at his chair. The Gotengo had reached its destination. In front of it was a large trench, one with uneven, gnarled columns of rock circling it. A floor made of ancient stones and fused bone fragments lay over the trench, ready to be broken with the right amount of force.

    Red glowing circles on screens across the ship represented the hydrokinetic mines planted by the Merfolk troops involved. The bombs were at the bases of the stone columns surrounding the ceiling of the trench. Dozens of green signatures representing friendly biologics dotted the left and right of the simulation, representing allied Mer troops who were retreating to safer grounds.

    He could imagine them now, tails armored with scales or crustacean shelling depending on the species that would propel the armored forms of the merfolk forwards. The armor equipped looked like a cross between a HAZMAT suit and that of something worn by an ancient knight. Hopefully it would be enough for those who didn't reach the safety of the distant cliffsides.

    Some of these green dots were halfway to designated safe points when orange lights began going off in the distance, creating lines of light on the screen. "The pheremone bombs are going off!'' shouted multiple crew members, some in nervous surprise or calm acceptance. Most of the latter were the veteran KDF troopers assigned to the ship.

    Operation: URSULA was now ready to advance to Stage 2.

    Gordon clenched the side of his seat with his hands as more of the bombs were detonated, creating more lights on his gridline simulation. The ones responsible for this were the troops from the South Atlantic Mer Kingdom, renowned as the best warriors amongst the Atlantic races. Aside from physical prowess, their skill at using the environment was also very important to this operation. They had used the secretions of various organisms alongside samples of droppings and other organic materials shed from the target to make a chemical that would hypothetically lure it to an agreed upon trap point.

    They could only hope it would work.

    The presence of a massive red biologic right behind the trail of orange lights and fleeing green lights proved the fruits of their labor.

    "Target is here. Prepare for battle." Gordon was firm in his statement as the target, the objective of this entire mission, began to close the distance towards the Gotengo.

    The heat signature became clearer as a limb glowing with infrared light swung outwards, taking out dozens of green lights.

    At that moment, he knew that twelve or more soldiers of the South Atlantic would not be coming home tonight.

    The ship hummed as its weapons began to deploy. Hatches opened up from the outside with a whirl as tubes emerged outwards, ready to fire explosive payloads.

    The technicians moved more rapidly at their computer stations while the merfolk dignitaries shouted in their native language with considerably more urgency.
    Gordon marched to the console and moved a switch when the next dozen green lifelines went off.

    The simulated battlefield rapidly faded away and was replaced with a real-time image of the world outside the ship. The armor plating in front of the bridge slid back, revealing an outside view through murky water.

    The enemy made its entrance by lunging for two columns of stone that were blocking it's path.

    Two golden claws resembling those on a crab crunched though the columns like twigs. The rubble floated to the floor as it moved forwards.

    The monster was heavily armored with the covering of gold-yellow exoskeleton with black-grey coloring on the edges of the armor. Its claws clicked and clacked as the hunched form advanced. Black eyes watched from atop a yellow skull with a single blunt horn protruding from the forehead. Its wide mouth, gleaming with fangs like that of an anglerfish or shark, opened wide. With the exception of the monstrous head, it almost looked like an upright giant lobster.

    Water bubbles burst out from the monstrous jaws as it swung its head and arms from side to side in a gesture of intimidation.

    A faint, muffled shriek was picked up by the ships speakers, making more than a few of the younger people aboard jump or cover their eyes. The Mer dignitaries immediately began moving backwards, eyes wide as they breathed heavily.

    Luring it to them was the easy part.

    Now this was where the fun began.

    The S-Analysis right next to his chair chimed as it immediately finished its search, having pinged the creatures identity in its database within moments.

    Specimen: Atlantic Scourge II
    Height: 120 Meters
    Class: V


    The second Scourge was a creature known to the public since the 1980's. She had attacked coastal towns and cities across the globe, with shipping being an extremely dangerous job in any routes she was known to frequent. Recent cultural exchange as early as five years ago revealed that she had also spent plenty of her time underwater attacking Mer settlements. Everything from small merfolk convoys to entire kingdoms dreaded her appearance, whether she was actively hunting or if she was simply strolling through the area.

    And if the Scourge was successfully angered, God have mercy on anyone around her.

    There was a very good reason for why Atlantic Scourge I was rarely mentioned these days.

    If Godzilla ruled the Pacific, the Scourge ruled the Atlantic.

    The entire point of Operation: URSULA was to end her decades long reign of terror across the Atlantic, or to at least put the crustacean into a deep hibernating state. Luring it to this big trench, they could only hope that the plan would be enough.

    "All surviving merfolk have successfully gotten to higher ground!" Niko, the blue-haired mermaid dignitary shouted. Turning to her, he was both slightly surprised and approving of the sudden fire in her tone. "It may be safe to start the next stage, commander!" She shouted once more.

    Gordon simply nodded and turned back to the screen. The Scourge began to move forwards, now right over the unstable ceiling which shook below its heavy feet as it approached the Gotengo. Now or never.

    "Active the Absolute Zero Cannon!" With motions speaking of heavy practice, all hands on the deck were already half finished with the order by the time he spoke.

    Gordon pulled out a katana from his belt, metal steel gleaming as he pointed ahead with it. The Scourge clanged its claws together, sending off a shower of sparks as she opened her maw further, leaning down.

    The drill at the front began to glow a bright blue. A sound like cracking ice was audible while it rapidly spun, layers of frost growing and then breaking off across the drill. Soon the energy within would be ready to fire.

    Gordon gave his next order as the Scourge moved forwards, the ocean floor shaking and raking up clouds of sand with every sluggish step she made.

    "Charge!"

    This was the loudest he'd been all day.

    The command was obeyed.

    The now hunched over Scourge scoured up more sand as she slammed her claws to the ground, flinging herself forwards like an ape.

    Simultaneously, the Gotengo propelled itself forwards with an audible whirl from its thrumming drill as the fuel lines across the hull shined a bright scarlet color.

    In the depths, light flashed across the dark canyon.
     
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  4. Extras: Carnobots
    ScriptGenius12

    ScriptGenius12 Know what you're doing yet?

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    KDF Manual VII: Carnobots

    Carnobots act as the intermediary tier of ground-based combat vehicles, above armored infantry and below Anti-Kaiju Mecha’s.
    The carnobots are based off the designs of the deceased Tabane Shinonono and have psionic single person interfaces for humanoid pilots. In order to be eligible to pilot a carnobot, one must both have the psionic potential necessary to use the interface and the strength to make the body move. Pilots typically undergo one to three years of training depending on their skill beforehand. Two different categories exist: Cybersaurs and Mecha-Raptors.

    Cybersaurs essentially act as mobile tanks and are built with a mixture of an armored metal found in Muan ruins and from space age titanium supplies.
    Around 15 meters high with the tallest known examples, they resemble bipedal mechanical Allosaurs in a “Tripod” stance and are primarily based in Europe. Meant to be deployed near coastal cities, in the event of an attack occurring more than ten miles away from a base, the cybersaurs have Simeum powered jets attached to their legs that can allow them to rapidly move to the scene of an attack. This method of flight is rather wonky and experimental due to the cybersaur not being designed like a jet or rocket, and as a result only senior pilots with years of experience in using similar vehicles are cleared to use this method to get to a battle scene quickly.

    The cybersaurs main weapon is a plasma exhaust laser in its torso, one directly connected to its reactor. When opened for a near twenty seconds of charging, the reactor is vulnerable, thus necessitating nearby armed support to distract attackers.

    A cybersaurs other armaments include two small maser batteries attached to its wrists to briefly ward off close range attackers as a “Taser”, because cybersaurs are not typically meant for melee combat. A grenade launcher on each shoulder can fire at least three plasma powered barrel sized grenades Two belt-fed bone breaker MK IV miniguns are attacked to the side of the shoulders to the left of the grenade launchers, and are meant to fire armor piercing rounds into the face and eyes of megafauna to distract and leave the opponent open to further attack.

    The US version of the cybersaurs is very similar, except for the replacement of the hands with MK I heavy plasma repeaters. Due to the high amount of skill needed to control all these weapons and move at the same time, cybersaur piloting is one of the most applied for training programs by psionic individuals in the military while also having one of the highest dropout rates. Distant assistance from base operators is often needed by pilots, and an automatic setting can be used for its ranged weapons as long as there are no friendlies in the line of fire.

    Mecha-Raptors are based in Asia, primarily in Japan and in Southern China. Resembling mechanical dromaeosaurs, each model is the size of an adult Tyrannosaurus Rex at 6 meters of height. Armed with state of the art mechanical ligaments and a fusion engine, they can be fit with AI and have the capacity in their heads for it, but after 1995, concerns over the original Mechagodzilla’s AI still being around in the technology derived from it means that all models are legally required to be piloted by trained psychics. Lacking ranged weapons, they nevertheless have sharp jaws that can bite through solid steel, and which can also gradually cut pieces of flesh off a larger kaiju.

    Their main weapons are their legs, with a plasma engine in each leg that powers both the body and the legs themselves.

    The main purpose of the Mecha-Raptors is to jump onto a larger kaiju and use the engine to grab onto flesh with a leg and drag the Nanotitanium sickle claw down, slicing open a bloody wound in the style of their inspiration. This both distracts an enemy kaiju and creates a weak spot that ranged military forces can focus fire on. Primarily skirmishers, they do well against Class I-II kaiju but have trouble against large packs or creatures at Class IV and above.

    There are over 26 active carnobots in the world at the time of writing.
     
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  5. Threadmarks: West
    ScriptGenius12

    ScriptGenius12 Know what you're doing yet?

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    May 19th, 2007

    Kyoto, Japan


    The massive auditorium room was absolutely packed on this day. It had been home to many profound moments in recent history, from the declaration of Kyoto as the new capital to today's astronomical events.

    The governments of the world had revealed the existence of Extraspecies. Liminals, Youkai, Demi-humans, even monster-men, names for them ran the full spectrum for these beings who strongly resembled figures from myths and legends. Ancient relatives of humanity that had been in hiding for years, until the march of advanced technology and increased encroachment by burrowing and aquatic kaiju began forcing them to come out of hiding. This was what had been publicly revealed so far, with pictures and footage of the alleged liminals being even rarer.

    So when it was announced that the first big conference would be in Kyoto, journalists and news media from around the world were eager to come and get the first look at one of the largest scoops of the decade rather then waiting for the next conferences to follow in their home countries.

    Chairs were lined across the circular space, men and women from across the sea moving like ants alongside local reporters as they tried to fit in after the usual security screening process. Microphones and cameras lined the tops of this sea of people as they looked towards the stage with a large open glass window at the back of it, one letting sunlight in to the front of a wooden podium. Soon, multiple Japanese politicians would enter to sign the bill alongside members of the illusive Extraspecies.

    As the crowds alternatively struggled into their seats or tried to get up close, one man walked forwards, digital camera in hand.

    The tall African American man was alone in terms of company, dressed in a thin brown jacket and a pair of jeans. The middle-aged looking man's thin black hair was cut short and cropped, small hairs on his chin indicating that he had recently shaved. He grunted as he tried to avoid bowling anyone over as he maneuvered his way forwards. "Excuse me-" he intoned as he moved past a small camera crew, his voice a deep baritone, one owing to his age.

    A plastic tag awkwardly pinned to his jacket identified him as a "Franklin West."

    West managed to reach the front, holding his camera just as it finally happened.

    Politicians dressed in suits and ties, a few with glasses, emerged from the right just as the others arrived from the left. He recognized the man at the front as one Junji Asou, Deputy to the current Prime Minister.

    Pandemonium erupted, pens going to paper as lens flashed when six women who were not human emerged from the right.

    The first was a woman with purple hair that almost seemed glossy, done up in a knot. Dressed in a suit and tie, she could be mistaken for a normal person if not for the black catlike ears sticking out of the top of her hair alongside the black, thin tail emerging from her grey skirt.

    The second was a woman in a white robe ornamented with golden lines, four golden hoops around her bronze arm peeking out from beneath her robe. Two sharper golden ears peeked out from underneath a white hood, idly twitching as if she was nervous.

    The third was an honest to God centaur, one with greying hair in a long ponytail. Her lower body was that of a horse, one with thick black fur. She wore a brown suit and tie. Her calm demeanor contrasted with the increased volume of shocked voices and shouts, questions pouring from the audience like artillery shells at Normandy.

    The fourth was a woman with ears like that of a rabbit, her hands clasped together at the long white dress she was wearing. Her gray hair contrasted with her youthful face, making it hard to determine her age. As usual in situations like this, answers would come later.

    The fifth was a woman with golden hair reaching down to her collarbone, a calm smile on her face. A Satyr, her hooves were hidden under her green dress, one that had a yellow symbol seeming to represent the sun in the middle of it.

    The sixth and final Extraspecies woman to emerge was dressed in a purple overcoat with dozens of golden buttons keeping it closed. Her platinum blonde hair barely hid the curved, elven ears emerging from it. However, the most notable thing about her were the wings.

    Two large limbs with pure white feathers emerged outwards from her shoulders, almost seeming to glow in the sunlight. They were held close to her body like half-folded coats. If fully unleashed, they would cover half the stage. While later information would confirm her to be the leader of one of the most prominent western Harpy tribes, more than a few of those present wondered if they were seeing an Angel.

    West snapped to attention, calloused hands moving his camera upwards as he prepared to take a shot when he felt he was ready.

    Introductions were made, names such as "Underground settlement" and "Hidden Kingdom" being used with sincerity. More detail on the how's and the why's beyond what was available, such as the extent of how they had remained hidden, why they were coming out now, what was going to happen next, that all came in detail afterwards.

    What mattered in the here and now was this moment.

    One of the politicians, Junji he recalled, stepped forwards as the purple-haired woman did the same.

    This was it, the historic moment that would soon mark the signing of the newly created Interspecies Exchange Bill.

    West managed to snap a close up picture of the two shaking hands the moment it happened.

    This image is one of many that will make frontline news in the days to come-

    And a moment in human history that West can look back on, and say to himself:

    "I was there."

    [-]

    January 4th, 2014

    Manhattan, New York


    It was a cold morning in January as the tell-tale clack of fingers on a keyboard echoed through a room in an apartment.

    "The debate nevertheless continues-"

    Behind a wooden, slightly worn desk, a laptop was the only sign of illumination in the room with it's curtains drawn. Finger's clacked across the keyboard as the writer continued his work, pausing to sigh for a moment as he leaned back in a wooden rocking chair.

    Franklin West's eyes were slightly bloodshot, an indication that he had gotten little sleep after a night of writing. He sighed once more, pressing a hand to his temples, the glare from the laptop illuminating a crinkled white t-shirt with a few stains on it alongside a pair of grey boxers and a few white locks in his short dark hair. Five'O Clock shadow ran across his chin and cheeks.

    He had just gotten back from his latest scoop, a rally and debate between politician's down in Jersey that was the topic of the freelance journalist's current article. It was a typical topic that rang out multiple times per year, one about politicians arguing over the legal use of energy weapons in conventional warfare by the US military. Some believed that those weapons invented by the KDF in the late sixties and seventies, from handheld laser saws to maser attack tank's, should be standardized in warfare. Others believed that as usual such weaponry should as usual be saved for kaiju incursion's and the organizations responsible for combating them.

    Said rally had rapidly developed into a shout fest between the two opposing sides that West nevertheless forced himself to stay through. The only good pictures the photojournalist got was off a small fistfight in the crowd and of a pro-maser pundit's toupee falling off, but he had discarded both of them after finding that they had little to do with any message beyond entertaining whoever would care to read such an article.

    For West, who preferred to literally tackle bigger issues in his writing, it was a dull, monotonous affair. That was why he was taking so long to finish the article; it was hard to muster up passion for a topic he had little interest in, but nevertheless money was money when you were an independent photojournalist, and for a man who commonly wrote for the Kaiju News Network, there had been little in recent major kaiju related news that he could report on location. There was that fight between Kagiza for Mogilos for Alpha status in Peru last February, Urogora's attack on the underground Dryad settlement of Du Lac in March, and a small attack by a flock of giant mutant condors on the IS Academy.

    Then there were rumors of the Atlantic Scourge being seen around a strait near the Mediterranean before a small earthquake, but knowing the KDF and Monarch, official declassified reports wouldn't come out until half a year later.

    Interesting and worrying to many, yes, but those were places a freelancer like him did not have much of a chance to get to in order to report in person at the area of the incursion. It just wasn't his style, and dry official reports by local agencies could only stimulate the mind so much.

    Sure, he could go down to Machu Picchu and take a picture of the sleeping Kagiza, but so could any two-bit tourist.

    Worse off for independent journalists like him was the most recent recession finally hitting late in 2012 as the cost of the Breacher Outbreak finally reared its head fully as damage from past attacks added up. Trying to travel outside of his country to the site of the most recent attacks was even more expensive and dangerous then ever before, which was unfortunate for him.

    He had barely fit his trip to the Korean DMZ in. Going to Monster Island to report on the drama surrounding Tamamo, the first kaiju expected to give live birth in captivity and who was due any day now, was completely out of his pay grade. He would have to watch the live YouTube recordings then when the event eventually happened.

    There was that incident down in Saitama with the giant louse, but the battle had been cleared up relatively quickly and he saw no need to go down to Japan when almost all the details were already out. There were already tons of articles about the possible influence of the MON Squad over the potential future application of Liminal's in combat alongside how the death of a single foreign liminal-Dona, an Echidna from Greece-would have on the current CE programs. He did have to admit that while he did have some form of interest in seeing the aftershocks of this incident, it wouldn't pay the bills for him as he was now.

    He sighed as he looked away from his laptop, getting out of his seat as he flicked on a light switch, blinking as he readjusted to light. "Damn," he whispered, "I really need to step up my game these days."

    To put it more simply, West's main problem was that he was having trouble getting to the site of an event before all the major details were already out. Some called it selfishness, wanting to be the one to get the credit to find and release all the answers before anyone else had the chance,

    He called it doing his damn job.

    West looked back to a shelf behind his desk, one holding framed pictures, photos from exploits years ago.

    [-]

    The first was of a crew of humans wielding laser weapons and rocket launchers as they victoriously stood in front of the hole-filled charred corpse of a massive armored rat near Kyoto, a temple in the background. This one was dated to 1995.

    The next was of the massive polar bear Tornaq, blue symbols on her shoulders glowing as she burrowed her way into a growing iceberg off the coast of Alaska in '96.

    Atlantic Scourge II and Kraken III coming ashore at Newfoundland, marching ahead in pursuit of an unknown objective in '98.

    A helicopter view of Zilla climbing out of the Hudson River into the harbor, waves and boats displaced as he shook a young Megalodon back and forth in his jaws. Then, Zilla circling Liberty Island, watching the Statue of Liberty with apparent curiosity. Both were in '98 too.

    The next displayed the remnants of a massive, scorched web across the city of Houston, alongside the body of the massive spider responsible-Kumonga-with craters full of yellow blood across it's bombed out corpse in 2000.

    Gigan standing stock still on the sandy shores of Infant Island a year later.

    Thaddeus Venture, dressed in a Hawaiian shirt and pants, unveiling his life saving organ cloning technology on a live TED Talk in '04, shortly before the Dagon War.

    Dagon rising from the bay, tentacles and thin limbs flailing as the beast flooded the streets of Boston with a gesture in the middle of 2004, the year of the war.

    How he survived the climb to the rooftops with his footage and life intact, West will never know.

    Komodithrax and Zilla resting side by side on the shore of an Alaskan Island at the end of the year.

    Gaira and Barugaron bursting through the now open forcefield at the entrance of Monster Island, both creatures locked in combat. Next, Barugaron forcing Gaira into the shallow water with a bladed foot. Then, Sanda caught mid leap in the photo, a tree with it's end sharpened like a spear in his grasp as Baragaron's head seemed to turn to look to him in either surprise or anger. To the left, a brown earth coated boulder was in mid-toss, aimed dead center at the sea monsters chest armor. One of Tamamo's yellow tails, curled as if in mid throw, was visible in the frame. The shadow of Baragon's snarling head was visible to the right as he prepared to charge at the scaly invader. All in 2005.

    At the center of New Jersey, a massive blue squid-Gezora-had its limbs flail as a massive mechanical humanoid with an armored head resembling that of a Viking helm-Hammerdown-brought it's wrist mounted hammer down onto its skull, a torrent of blood gushing out alongside the creatures left eye in a moment frozen mid-snap, dated '07.

    The next photo was another picture of Hammerdown, this time featuring it staring down a gangly, hunched, and pale kaiju with a bulbous skull, one nevertheless a head above it in height. The Cloverfield Monster.

    Hammerdown's hammer and hand-mounted drill visibly thrumming with electric power from the large generator on it's back while slobber and a veritable piles of half-digested bones fell from Clover's mouth. Both photo's were a year later in '08.

    A Mecha-Raptor on top of a large four-legged breacher resembling a tadpole with the head and scales of a crocodile, the mech's lower sickle toe gleaming as it prepared to stab downwards. The scene was misty, with muddy water splashing around both combatants. That day in 2011, even in a helicopter he'd never felt more in danger.

    An aerial view of the goo splattered remains of Ghol-Dom's shell across fallen glass and concrete across what used to be half of Panama City in '09.

    Missile-loaded turrets and troopers wearing gas masks and body concealing armor, laser saws in hand at the Korean DMZ. In the misty distance, around and under rubble, the tell tale bioluminescence of radioactive wildlife blurred in the view of the camera in an event dated 2013, a year ago.

    Godzilla emerging from the Atlantic water near the damaged cliffs at Lisbon after the battle with Dagon, the broken, limp form of the Vogeladra held in his arms back in '04.

    One framed photo was simpler but no less major in West's long career: A picture of the shaking of hands between an Interspecies representative and a Japanese politician at Kyoto, marking the creation of the Cultural Exchange. Dated in '07.

    More and more photos, some of kaiju mid-battle or emergence, other's of the aftermath or of more simple scenes such as the one above.

    These mementos of a long career all head one thing in common.

    They involved kaiju, or creatures that had only existed in myths and legends until now.

    West was a man who didn't just want to report the news; He wanted to write about events that were shaping history in front of his eyes.

    [-]

    Standing up, he sighed as he walked into the nearby kitchen. Within moments he had pulled two slices of bread from a clear bag, scarfing them down after taking a moment to sit and stretch on a nearby couch. He thought back to his old photos, ones that had earned him renown in the kaiju enthusiast community.

    He had a knack for snapping photo's that depicted the exact second when a scaly fist collided with an armored face, or the moment when a barrage of missiles detonated and enveloped a hoard of gargantuan insects like a wave. In a way, his timing was inspirational to other photographer's in similar lines of work.

    That's when he had his Eureka moment.

    Inspiration. That is what he'd been lacking.

    He got up, stretching. Perhaps he simply needed to take a walk. Sitting up, he cracked his neck before walking into the next room, almost homing in on a rectangular dresser.

    He was in New York City after all.

    Even when you've lived there for years, there was little chance that you'd run out of things to look at.

    Soon enough, he exited the apartment, a thick black coat around him. Hands in the pockets of his brown sweatpants, West took a moment to breathe, mist forming in front of his face in the cold weather. As he walked down the stairs of his apartment he zipped up the coat, only the collar of his white buttoned up shirt poking out as the honking and squealing of traffic echoed nearby.

    Walking down the sidewalk, he moved to the left, not sure exactly where he was going in New York but hoping to find the inspiration he was seeking anyway.

    As he went around the corner of the apartment building, he was unaware of the two pairs of eyes watching him from a nondescript sedan.

    "Wait for him to come back, then we'll make the offer."

    [-]

    You can be crowded, New York.

    Ever since he was young and growing up in Brooklyn, trains had been one of West's many interests.

    Case in point, he was now in one of the cities many train cars, one currently going up across a bridge that overlooked the streets below. Where others would look at their phones or find another way to pass the time, West preferred to take in the sights. Sure enough, one turn later he stepped close to the windows to appreciate the view that the current position of the train gave him. Across apartment buildings and offices in the distance, he could see the various landmarks, skyscrapers that had survived the turbulence of the past century.

    The Chrysler Building. The Towers.

    The Empire State Building, jagged scars across it's exterior from where Zilla had used it as a scratching post before trying to climb it back in '98. The scars had been welded, but the black marks were still there. A reminder of an event that easily could happen again.

    But in a way, the fact that the building remained intact regardless was a show of resilience. Not just for the Empire State, but the city itself.

    You can be loud.

    Walking outside of a local café, West sipped down a hot cup of coffee, idly tossing the small napkin that had held his lunch-a hot dog straight from a vendor-into a nearby trash can as he paused to take in the local sights of Times Square.

    The city buzzed around him, people streaming down the sidewalk as billboards flashed ads for movies, drinks, and games. By now it was near noon, and he had made good distance.

    All sorts of vehicles sped past him, and if he looked close enough at the concrete, he could make out the faded, filled in imprint where the Cloverfield monster had thrown the head of Lady Liberty into the streets half a decade ago. Even if the damage was repaired, the infamous image would remain in the minds of New Yorker's for years to come.

    But despite the occasional trouble, hell-

    West wasn't sure if he had been deliberately seeking this place out or if he just stumbled upon it during his wanderings. But there was no mistaking where he was now. A now empty space between two large buildings, one barren except for the five rectangular monoliths in the middle.

    Hundreds, perhaps thousands of names were lined across them.

    Ground-G.

    It was a cold day in 1974 when Godzilla and his current enemy, an extraterrestrial war machine in his likeness, burst from the bay, locked in combat.

    The day of the first kaiju incursion into New York. The monoliths were planted at the space where a skyscraper had collapsed during the ferocity of the battle, temporarily pinning the monster king under the weight of the rubble.

    The names on the monoliths were not just that of those who had died on that fateful day.

    People who died in future incursions in New York and beyond across the world had their names engraved as a simple reminder.

    To never forget the fallen.

    West found himself walking up to one of the monoliths, unsure of why he did so. He only realized that he had reached forwards and touched the cold stone when he felt his right hand shaking. Pulling it down, he realized that he was not alone.

    A woman, hood over her head, stood next to the nearest Monolith. -"He's going to graduate this year, you'd be so proud of him." Another figure, a young-looking man with a brown scarf, twiddling his thumbs as he sat with his back turned to a Monolith in the back "Mom, I, uh, met a girl in one of my classes. She's one of those liminal-people, uh, but I think you'd have liked her-"

    Quietly, West turned around to leave.

    He had gotten what he came here for.

    -That's what we love about you, New York. No matter how hard you get hit, you always stand back up.

    [-]

    It was dusk by the time he had returned to his inner city apartment. Exiting a Taxi after it pulled up to the sidewalk, West turned back and shouted "Keep the change!" before closing the door with one hand. He walked up the sidewalk, not sure of what he was feeling after his little trip. He didn't know if he was inspired or if his spirits had been dampened by the realization of just how much his-and perhaps New York's-life seemed to revolve around giant monsters. At the very least, he now had some of the drive to get the damn paper done so he could go back to bed-

    "Sir? Are you Franklin West?"

    Goddammit.

    Sighing, West turned around to regard whoever had interrupted him.

    He blinked, not expecting two men dressed in rather formal looking suits and ties. The first was a serious looking Caucasian man with brown, curly hair and a matching brown mustache that was very thick yet nevertheless well kept. His companion looked to be a clean-shaven younger man of Middle Eastern descent. His black hair appeared to be a bit disheveled as he spoke up rather quickly. "I apologize for the interruption, Mr. West-"

    "Is there something you need?" West replied rather curtly, not sure where this was going. The older man took charge. "I suppose I'll cut to the point." He started off in a British accent. "We-" He gestured to himself and his fellow agent, who nodded at the assessment-"-Work for Monarch, and we'd like to talk to you."

    West raised an eyebrow. The white symbol of the organization was sown into the front of their outfits, so he figured that they were telling the truth. He knew Monarch by reputation, half of it being that they dug up bones and studied kaiju, preferably ones dead or dormant. The other half he knew about was the mess they caused in Newfoundland. He'd been there for that.

    West decided to test the waters. "Alright, say I'm willing to listen. Is there anymore to it that you can tell me in public, right now about this?" The second man got a bit nervous, looking left to right. The British agent kept his stoic composure as he smoothly replied. "Let us go inside first. What we have to show you is quite confidential."

    West could smell a scoop when he saw one, and he had a feeling that whatever this was, it had to beat legislation on laser rifles. "You have my attention." He replied, eyes narrowed but still willing to hear them out. He waved them forwards as he turned and walked up to his apartment door, Opening it, he turned to the men. It was always best to know your source. "Would it be a problem if I asked for your-"

    "Thomas Conrad." The British man replied, finishing his reply for him. The younger man had an unreadable expression as he looked to Conrad then ahead before giving out his own name. "I am Ikrimah Khouri." He looked a bit nervous. "First time in the field?" West asked. Khouri blinked before nodding. West shrugged. "It happens, nothing to be ashamed over." He looked to Conrad, and the agent simply stood with his arms crossed, inscrutable except for a raised eyebrow. West looked back at the two of them before stepping back and pulling the rest of the door open. "Come on in. I'll see what you two have to say."

    [-]

    "Help yourselves."

    West had grabbed two additional slices of bread that he had then toasted, offering four slices to the agents, which they graciously accepted. West had seated himself on his sofa, where he looked over a stack of documents and photos that the agents of Monarch had put on the table. They apparently wanted him to get a look at it himself first. Khouri was seated in a chair, watching West take a look while Conrad idly paced around the room, keeping an eye on the journalist.

    "Franklin Carl West." Conrad intoned, as if seeing how the word fit on his lips while West went through the photos given to him. Immediately he was struck by the image of the giant tooth tangled in algae. Conrad continued speaking. "Born in Brooklyn on April 21st, 1966 as the son of two civil rights activists, both deceased as of last year. Went to Brooklyn College for a semester and a half, where you took journalism as your major before dropping out in December of 1985 after a Fall semester in Japan, in which you were present during the second Tokyo Incident in November. Notably, your professor and guide for this semester was Steve Martin, a photojournalist and also a known survivo-"

    "Cut to the chase." West said, eyebrow raised as he interrupted the summation of his life. He didn't know if the guy was trying to butter him up or intimidate him. "From what I'm seeing, this is some sort of lair-" He held up a photo of the thermal mapped underground cavern system, "-And the Big G is involved?" Conrad nodded, and-was that a grin?-for the briefest of moments before he answered the older man. "It is believed that Godzilla has been living in these caverns for decades, as a place to rest between known incidents and as a home in general. His species may have been using it as a nest for centuries." West nodded as he digested this before he responded. "I get it, that there is clearly some sort of expedition planned. What I question is why you need me?" Conrad wryly grinned. "I understand that you have much field experience. In fact, I know for a fact that you've seen the subject in action before."

    While he mostly kept to the news and documentaries like most Americans when it came to Godzilla, West had indeed seen Godzilla in person before; usually miles away in a Helicopter or under a tarp. But the last time he truly saw him in the flesh from a distance was back in '04, at Portugal. He had gotten some good shots but...

    There was loss that day. Bodies were nothing new after a kaiju incursion, but what he had seen before and after Dagon's defeat and incineration stayed with him to this day.

    "I've seen him in action a few times." He dryly replied. Conrad simply nodded then looked over to the shelf where West had kept his mementos. "You've had quite the career so far, Mr. West. Put yourself close to the action. I'd say you know the stakes." Turning around, Conrad spoke up once more. "We'd like you to join and report on the mission as it progresses." West blinked and leaned back in genuine surprise. "I thought you guys liked your secrecy." Conrad nodded before taking a nearby seat in front of a coffee table. "To put it simply, Monarch isn't as trusted as it used to be West, after the unfortunate business at Newfoundland a decade ago." Amongst other things, West idly thought. Monarch was also known for staking claim over sites featuring dormant kaiju. Some felt that Monarch either wasn't responsible enough or should kill the creatures while they slept instead of becoming a nuisance. West held his tongue and replied with "Go on."

    "We need a human perspective. A trusted face to report on the progress of the expedition. Once it begins, report on it as you do. Talk to the other members of the operation. Write about how it progresses once the expedition to the inner tunnels of the lair begins. In other words, simply do your job."

    West nodded. "Understood. If I join-" He made sure to emphasize the if, "-What do I get out of this?"

    Conrad didn't turn his head. "Khouri, show him." Hearing his name called, the younger agent started as if just waking up before putting another folder on West's table. "This will explain a few things." Conrad continued. West opened it and blinked, shaking his head at the numbers.

    This is enough cash to keep me afloat for more then half a year! He slowly turned his head up to Conrad. "You really know your way into a man's heart." Conrad genuinely grinned. "Aside from the monetary incentive given in exchange for joining, I can imagine that reporting on such an event will earn much prestige and reputation for you. Monarch will pay for all travel expenses-" I could get behind that. "-And I understand that you've had some recent difficulty in finding a good case for your articles. Last major one you wrote was in Seoul two years ago, if I recall correctly." West nodded, not sure if the man was dissing him. Looking down at the papers, he spoke up. "Alright, I'll see what I can do. Give me some time to think about it, I'll give you a call with the number you gave me by Monday. But I will say that you really have attention." Conrad smirked as he stood up. "I'm pleased to hear that. We just need to sign a few waivers, and then Khouri and I will be out of your way."

    "Alright, let's do this." West responded, stretching his arms for a moment.

    The waivers and the typical rules were signed and laid out, with the gist mainly being along the lines of, If you reveal the planned expedition before it starts, you will lose all monetary offers and will be banned from joining, Written articles and pictures are to be only be released publicly when the mission is declassified after completion, etc. But West had learned journalistic integrity from the best, and he wasn't the type to destroy one of his best recent sources of incomes over some moral high ground.

    With the waivers finished, Conrad and Khouri scooped up the folders and papers into a briefcase before thanking West for his time and walking back out. For a moment, Conrad turned back before exiting the house with one final sentence. "Monarch is looking forward to working with you, Mr. West."

    And then they were gone, leaving him to his thoughts.

    [-]

    As the agents exited the apartment, the photojournalist paused as he stopped to consider the implications of what had just happened.

    Then, for the first time in a good long while, Franklin West laughed mirthfully, pitching forwards as he caught himself before smiling thinly. Looking to his laptop and the unfinished article that he had little passion or use for anymore, the decision was obvious.

    He deleted the article right then and there. If his contractor from CNN got upset, there was bound to be another reporter in that audience anyway, and West himself had gotten a far better deal from Monarch.

    This was just the break he was waiting for. Going into an underwater station to report on a journey to the center of Godzilla's home base? It was a dream come true for many people in the kaiju business.

    It would be dangerous, but it wasn't like he'd actually be going on the submarine teams. He'd just stay and report on daily life at the base and on the mission from the safety of the control room. Hopefully the photos he would be able to take of the sub footage would be worth it.

    He renamed the title, with the do
    May 19th, 2007

    Kyoto, Japan


    The massive auditorium room was absolutely packed on this day. It had been home to many profound moments in recent history, from the declaration of Kyoto as the new capital to today's astronomical events.

    The governments of the world had revealed the existence of Extraspecies. Liminals, Youkai, Demi-humans, even monster-men, names for them ran the full spectrum for these beings who strongly resembled figures from myths and legends. Ancient relatives of humanity that had been in hiding for years, until the march of advanced technology and increased encroachment by burrowing and aquatic kaiju began forcing them to come out of hiding. This was what had been publicly revealed so far, with pictures and footage of the alleged liminals being even rarer.

    So when it was announced that the first big conference would be in Kyoto, journalists and news media from around the world were eager to come and get the first look at one of the largest scoops of the decade rather then waiting for the next conferences to follow in their home countries.

    Chairs were lined across the circular space, men and women from across the sea moving like ants alongside local reporters as they tried to fit in after the usual security screening process. Microphones and cameras lined the tops of this sea of people as they looked towards the stage with a large open glass window at the back of it, one letting sunlight in to the front of a wooden podium. Soon, multiple Japanese politicians would enter to sign the bill alongside members of the illusive Extraspecies.

    As the crowds alternatively struggled into their seats or tried to get up close, one man walked forwards, digital camera in hand.

    The tall African American man was alone in terms of company, dressed in a thin brown jacket and a pair of jeans. The middle-aged looking man's thin black hair was cut short and cropped, small hairs on his chin indicating that he had recently shaved. He grunted as he tried to avoid bowling anyone over as he maneuvered his way forwards. "Excuse me-" he intoned as he moved past a small camera crew, his voice a deep baritone, one owing to his age.

    A plastic tag awkwardly pinned to his jacket identified him as a "Franklin West."

    West managed to reach the front, holding his camera just as it finally happened.

    Politicians dressed in suits and ties, a few with glasses, emerged from the right just as the others arrived from the left. He recognized the man at the front as one Junji Asou, Deputy to the current Prime Minister.

    Pandemonium erupted, pens going to paper as lens flashed when six women who were not human emerged from the right.

    The first was a woman with purple hair that almost seemed glossy, done up in a knot. Dressed in a suit and tie, she could be mistaken for a normal person if not for the black catlike ears sticking out of the top of her hair alongside the black, thin tail emerging from her grey skirt.

    The second was a woman in a white robe ornamented with golden lines, four golden hoops around her bronze arm peeking out from beneath her robe. Two sharper golden ears peeked out from underneath a white hood, idly twitching as if she was nervous.

    The third was an honest to God centaur, one with greying hair in a long ponytail. Her lower body was that of a horse, one with thick black fur. She wore a brown suit and tie. Her calm demeanor contrasted with the increased volume of shocked voices and shouts, questions pouring from the audience like artillery shells at Normandy.

    The fourth was a woman with ears like that of a rabbit, her hands clasped together at the long white dress she was wearing. Her gray hair contrasted with her youthful face, making it hard to determine her age. As usual in situations like this, answers would come later.

    The fifth was a woman with golden hair reaching down to her collarbone, a calm smile on her face. A Satyr, her hooves were hidden under her green dress, one that had a yellow symbol seeming to represent the sun in the middle of it.

    The sixth and final Extraspecies woman to emerge was dressed in a purple overcoat with dozens of golden buttons keeping it closed. Her platinum blonde hair barely hid the curved, elven ears emerging from it. However, the most notable thing about her were the wings.

    Two large limbs with pure white feathers emerged outwards from her shoulders, almost seeming to glow in the sunlight. They were held close to her body like half-folded coats. If fully unleashed, they would cover half the stage. While later information would confirm her to be the leader of one of the most prominent western Harpy tribes, more than a few of those present wondered if they were seeing an Angel.

    West snapped to attention, calloused hands moving his camera upwards as he prepared to take a shot when he felt he was ready.

    Introductions were made, names such as "Underground settlement" and "Hidden Kingdom" being used with sincerity. More detail on the how's and the why's beyond what was available, such as the extent of how they had remained hidden, why they were coming out now, what was going to happen next, that all came in detail afterwards.

    What mattered in the here and now was this moment.

    One of the politicians, Junji he recalled, stepped forwards as the purple-haired woman did the same.

    This was it, the historic moment that would soon mark the signing of the newly created Interspecies Exchange Bill.

    West managed to snap a close up picture of the two shaking hands the moment it happened.

    This image is one of many that will make frontline news in the days to come-

    And a moment in human history that West can look back on, and say to himself:

    "I was there."

    [-]

    January 4th, 2014

    Manhattan, New York


    It was a cold morning in January as the tell-tale clack of fingers on a keyboard echoed through a room in an apartment.

    "The debate nevertheless continues-"

    Behind a wooden, slightly worn desk, a laptop was the only sign of illumination in the room with it's curtains drawn. Finger's clacked across the keyboard as the writer continued his work, pausing to sigh for a moment as he leaned back in a wooden rocking chair.

    Franklin West's eyes were slightly bloodshot, an indication that he had gotten little sleep after a night of writing. He sighed once more, pressing a hand to his temples, the glare from the laptop illuminating a crinkled white t-shirt with a few stains on it alongside a pair of grey boxers and a few white locks in his short dark hair. Five'O Clock shadow ran across his chin and cheeks.

    He had just gotten back from his latest scoop, a rally and debate between politician's down in Jersey that was the topic of the freelance journalist's current article. It was a typical topic that rang out multiple times per year, one about politicians arguing over the legal use of energy weapons in conventional warfare by the US military. Some believed that those weapons invented by the KDF in the late sixties and seventies, from handheld laser saws to maser attack tank's, should be standardized in warfare. Others believed that as usual such weaponry should as usual be saved for kaiju incursion's and the organizations responsible for combating them.

    Said rally had rapidly developed into a shout fest between the two opposing sides that West nevertheless forced himself to stay through. The only good pictures the photojournalist got was off a small fistfight in the crowd and of a pro-maser pundit's toupee falling off, but he had discarded both of them after finding that they had little to do with any message beyond entertaining whoever would care to read such an article.

    For West, who preferred to literally tackle bigger issues in his writing, it was a dull, monotonous affair. That was why he was taking so long to finish the article; it was hard to muster up passion for a topic he had little interest in, but nevertheless money was money when you were an independent photojournalist, and for a man who commonly wrote for the Kaiju News Network, there had been little in recent major kaiju related news that he could report on location. There was that fight between Kagiza for Mogilos for Alpha status in Peru last February, Urogora's attack on the underground Dryad settlement of Du Lac in March, and a small attack by a flock of giant mutant condors on the IS Academy.

    Then there were rumors of the Atlantic Scourge being seen around a strait near the Mediterranean before a small earthquake, but knowing the KDF and Monarch, official declassified reports wouldn't come out until half a year later.

    Interesting and worrying to many, yes, but those were places a freelancer like him did not have much of a chance to get to in order to report in person at the area of the incursion. It just wasn't his style, and dry official reports by local agencies could only stimulate the mind so much.

    Sure, he could go down to Machu Picchu and take a picture of the sleeping Kagiza, but so could any two-bit tourist.

    Worse off for independent journalists like him was the most recent recession finally hitting late in 2012 as the cost of the Breacher Outbreak finally reared its head fully as damage from past attacks added up. Trying to travel outside of his country to the site of the most recent attacks was even more expensive and dangerous then ever before, which was unfortunate for him.

    He had barely fit his trip to the Korean DMZ in. Going to Monster Island to report on the drama surrounding Tamamo, the first kaiju expected to give live birth in captivity and who was due any day now, was completely out of his pay grade. He would have to watch the live YouTube recordings then when the event eventually happened.

    There was that incident down in Saitama with the giant louse, but the battle had been cleared up relatively quickly and he saw no need to go down to Japan when almost all the details were already out. There were already tons of articles about the possible influence of the MON Squad over the potential future application of Liminal's in combat alongside how the death of a single foreign liminal-Dona, an Echidna from Greece-would have on the current CE programs. He did have to admit that while he did have some form of interest in seeing the aftershocks of this incident, it wouldn't pay the bills for him as he was now.

    He sighed as he looked away from his laptop, getting out of his seat as he flicked on a light switch, blinking as he readjusted to light. "Damn," he whispered, "I really need to step up my game these days."

    To put it more simply, West's main problem was that he was having trouble getting to the site of an event before all the major details were already out. Some called it selfishness, wanting to be the one to get the credit to find and release all the answers before anyone else had the chance,

    He called it doing his damn job.

    West looked back to a shelf behind his desk, one holding framed pictures, photos from exploits years ago.

    [-]

    The first was of a crew of humans wielding laser weapons and rocket launchers as they victoriously stood in front of the hole-filled charred corpse of a massive armored rat near Kyoto, a temple in the background. This one was dated to 1995.

    The next was of the massive polar bear Tornaq, blue symbols on her shoulders glowing as she burrowed her way into a growing iceberg off the coast of Alaska in '96.

    Atlantic Scourge II and Kraken III coming ashore at Newfoundland, marching ahead in pursuit of an unknown objective in '98.

    A helicopter view of Zilla climbing out of the Hudson River into the harbor, waves and boats displaced as he shook a young Megalodon back and forth in his jaws. Then, Zilla circling Liberty Island, watching the Statue of Liberty with apparent curiosity. Both were in '98 too.

    The next was displayed the remnants of a massive, scorched web across the city of Houston, alongside the body of the massive spider responsible-Kumonga-with craters full of yellow blood across it's bombed out corpse in 2000.

    Gigan standing stock still on the sandy shores of Infant Island a year later.

    Thaddeus Venture, dressed in a Hawaiian shirt and pants, unveiling his life saving organ cloning technology on a live TED Talk in '04, shortly before the Dagon War.

    Dagon rising from the bay, tentacles and thin limbs flailing as the beast flooded the streets of Boston with a gesture in the middle of 2004, the year of the war.

    How he survived the climb to the rooftops with his footage and life intact, West will never know.

    Komodithrax and Zilla resting side by side on the shore of an Alaskan Island at the end of the year.

    Gaira and Barugaron bursting through the now open forcefield at the entrance of Monster Island, both creatures locked in combat. Next, Barugaron forcing Gaira into the shallow water with a bladed foot. Then, Sanda caught mid leap in the photo, a tree with it's end sharpened like a spear in his grasp as Baragaron's head seemed to turn to look to him in either surprise or anger. To the left, a brown earth coated boulder was in mid-toss, aimed dead center at the sea monsters chest armor. One of Tamamo's yellow tails, curled as if in mid throw, was visible in the frame. The shadow of Baragon's snarling head was visible to the right as he prepared to charge at the scaly invader. All in 2005.

    At the center of New Jersey, a massive blue squid-Gezora-had its limbs flail as a massive mechanical humanoid with an armored head resembling that of a Viking helm-Hammerdown-brought it's wrist mounted hammer down onto its skull, a torrent of blood gushing out alongside the creatures left eye in a moment frozen mid-snap, dated '07.

    The next photo was another picture of Hammerdown, this time featuring it staring down a gangly, hunched, and pale kaiju with a bulbous skull, one nevertheless a head above it in height. The Cloverfield Monster.

    Hammerdown's hammer and hand-mounted drill visibly thrumming with electric power from the large generator on it's back while slobber and a veritable piles of half-digested bones fell from Clover's mouth. Both photo's were a year later in '08.

    A Mecha-Raptor on top of a large four-legged breacher resembling a tadpole with the head and scales of a crocodile, the mech's lower sickle toe gleaming as it prepared to stab downwards. The scene was misty, with muddy water splashing around both combatants. That day in 2011, even in a helicopter he'd never felt more in danger.

    An aerial view of the goo splattered remains of Ghol-Dom's shell across fallen glass and concrete across what used to be half of Panama City in '09.

    Missile-loaded turrets and troopers wearing gas masks and body concealing armor, laser saws in hand at the Korean DMZ. In the misty distance, around and under rubble, the tell tale bioluminescence of radioactive wildlife blurred in the view of the camera in an event dated 2013, a year ago.

    Godzilla emerging from the Atlantic water near the damaged cliffs at Lisbon after the battle with Dagon, the broken, limp form of the Vogeladra held in his arms back in '04.

    One framed photo was simpler but no less major in West's long career: A picture of the shaking of hands between an Interspecies representative and a Japanese politician at Kyoto, marking the creation of the Cultural Exchange. Dated in '07.

    More and more photos, some of kaiju mid-battle or emergence, other's of the aftermath or of more simple scenes such as the one above.

    These mementos of a long career all head one thing in common.

    They involved kaiju, or creatures that had only existed in myths and legends until now.

    West was a man who didn't just want to report the news; He wanted to write about events that were shaping history in front of his eyes.

    [-]

    Standing up, he sighed as he walked into the nearby kitchen. Within moments he had pulled two slices of bread from a clear bag, scarfing them down after taking a moment to sit and stretch on a nearby couch. He thought back to his old photos, ones that had earned him renown in the kaiju enthusiast community.

    He had a knack for snapping photo's that depicted the exact second when a scaly fist collided with an armored face, or the moment when a barrage of missiles detonated and enveloped a hoard of gargantuan insects like a wave. In a way, his timing was inspirational to other photographer's in similar lines of work.

    That's when he had his Eureka moment.

    Inspiration. That is what he'd been lacking.

    He got up, stretching. Perhaps he simply needed to take a walk. Sitting up, he cracked his neck before walking into the next room, almost homing in on a rectangular dresser.

    He was in New York City after all.

    Even when you've lived there for years, there was little chance that you'd run out of things to look at.

    Soon enough, he exited the apartment, a thick black coat around him. Hands in the pockets of his brown sweatpants, West took a moment to breathe, mist forming in front of his face in the cold weather. As he walked down the stairs of his apartment he zipped up the coat, only the collar of his white buttoned up shirt poking out as the honking and squealing of traffic echoed nearby.

    Walking down the sidewalk, he moved to the left, not sure exactly where he was going in New York but hoping to find the inspiration he was seeking anyway.

    As he went around the corner of the apartment building, he was unaware of the two pairs of eyes watching him from a nondescript sedan.

    "Wait for him to come back, then we'll make the offer."

    [-]

    You can be crowded, New York.

    Ever since he was young and growing up in Brooklyn, trains had been one of West's many interests.

    Case in point, he was now in one of the cities many train cars, one currently going up across a bridge that overlooked the streets below. Where others would look at their phones or find another way to pass the time, West preferred to take in the sights. Sure enough, one turn later he stepped close to the windows to appreciate the view that the current position of the train gave him. Across apartment buildings and offices in the distance, he could see the various landmarks, skyscrapers that had survived the turbulence of the past century.

    The Chrysler Building. The Towers.

    The Empire State Building, jagged scars across it's exterior from where Zilla had used it as a scratching post before trying to climb it back in '98. The scars had been welded, but the black marks were still there. A reminder of an event that easily could happen again.

    But in a way, the fact that the building remained intact regardless was a show of resilience. Not just for the Empire State, but the city itself.

    You can be loud.

    Walking outside of a local café, West sipped down a hot cup of coffee, idly tossing the small napkin that had held his lunch-a hot dog straight from a vendor-into a nearby trash can as he paused to take in the local sights of Times Square.

    The city buzzed around him, people streaming down the sidewalk as billboards flashed ads for movies, drinks, and games. By now it was near noon, and he had made good distance.

    All sorts of vehicles sped past him, and if he looked close enough at the concrete, he could make out the faded, filled in imprint where the Cloverfield monster had thrown the head of Lady Liberty into the streets half a decade ago. Even if the damage was repaired, the infamous image would remain in the minds of New Yorker's for years to come.

    But despite the occasional trouble, hell-

    West wasn't sure if he had been deliberately seeking this place out or if he just stumbled upon it during his wanderings. But there was no mistaking where he was now. A now empty space between two large buildings, one barren except for the five rectangular monoliths in the middle.

    Hundreds, perhaps thousands of names were lined across them.

    Ground-G.

    It was a cold day in 1974 when Godzilla and his current enemy, an extraterrestrial war machine in his likeness, burst from the bay, locked in combat.

    The day of the first kaiju incursion into New York. The monoliths were planted at the space where a skyscraper had collapsed during the ferocity of the battle, temporarily pinning the monster king under the weight of the rubble.

    The names on the monoliths were not just that of those who had died on that fateful day.

    People who died in future incursions in New York and beyond across the world had their names engraved as a simple reminder.

    To never forget the fallen.

    West found himself walking up to one of the monoliths, unsure of why he did so. He only realized that he had reached forwards and touched the cold stone when he felt his right hand shaking. Pulling it down, he realized that he was not alone.

    A woman, hood over her head, stood next to the nearest Monolith. -"He's going to graduate this year, you'd be so proud of him." Another figure, a young-looking man with a brown scarf, twiddling his thumbs as he sat with his back turned to a Monolith in the back "Mom, I, uh, met a girl in one of my classes. She's one of those liminal-people, uh, but I think you'd have liked her-"

    Quietly, West turned around to leave.

    He had gotten what he came here for.

    -That's what we love about you, New York. No matter how hard you get hit, you always stand back up.

    [-]

    It was dusk by the time he had returned to his inner city apartment. Exiting a Taxi after it pulled up to the sidewalk, West turned back and shouted "Keep the change!" before closing the door with one hand. He walked up the sidewalk, not sure of what he was feeling after his little trip. He didn't know if he was inspired or if his spirits had been dampened by the realization of just how much his-and perhaps New York's-life seemed to revolve around giant monsters. At the very least, he now had some of the drive to get the damn paper done so he could go back to bed-

    "Sir? Are you Franklin West?"

    Goddammit.

    Sighing, West turned around to regard whoever had interrupted him.

    He blinked, not expecting two men dressed in rather formal looking suits and ties. The first was a serious looking Caucasian man with brown, curly hair and a matching brown mustache that was very thick yet nevertheless well kept. His companion looked to be a clean-shaven younger man of Middle Eastern descent. His black hair appeared to be a bit disheveled as he spoke up rather quickly. "I apologize for the interruption, Mr. West-"

    "Is there something you need?" West replied rather curtly, not sure where this was going. The older man took charge. "I suppose I'll cut to the point." He started off in a British accent. "We-" He gestured to himself and his fellow agent, who nodded at the assessment-"-Work for Monarch, and we'd like to talk to you."

    West raised an eyebrow. The white symbol of the organization was sown into the front of their outfits, so he figured that they were telling the truth. He knew Monarch by reputation, half of it being that they dug up bones and studied kaiju, preferably ones dead or dormant. The other half he knew about was the mess they caused in Newfoundland. He'd been there for that.

    West decided to test the waters. "Alright, say I'm willing to listen. Is there anymore to it that you can tell me in public, right now about this?" The second man got a bit nervous, looking left to right. The British agent kept his stoic composure as he smoothly replied. "Let us go inside first. What we have to show you is quite confidential."

    West could smell a scoop when he saw one, and he had a feeling that whatever this was, it had to beat legislation on laser rifles. "You have my attention." He replied, eyes narrowed but still willing to hear them out. He waved them forwards as he turned and walked up to his apartment door, Opening it, he turned to the men. It was always best to know your source. "Would it be a problem if I asked for your-"

    "Thomas Conrad." The British man replied, finishing his reply for him. The younger man had an unreadable expression as he looked to Conrad then ahead before giving out his own name. "I am Ikrimah Khouri." He looked a bit nervous. "First time in the field?" West asked. Khouri blinked before nodding. West shrugged. "It happens, nothing to be ashamed over." He looked to Conrad, and the agent simply stood with his arms crossed, inscrutable except for a raised eyebrow. West looked back at the two of them before stepping back and pulling the rest of the door open. "Come on in. I'll see what you two have to say."

    [-]

    "Help yourselves."

    West had grabbed two additional slices of bread that he had then toasted, offering four slices to the agents, which they graciously accepted. West had seated himself on his sofa, where he looked over a stack of documents and photos that the agents of Monarch had put on the table. They apparently wanted him to get a look at it himself first. Khouri was seated in a chair, watching West take a look while Conrad idly paced around the room, keeping an eye on the journalist.

    "Franklin Carl West." Conrad intoned, as if seeing how the word fit on his lips while West went through the photos given to him. Immediately he was struck by the image of the giant tooth tangled in algae. Conrad continued speaking. "Born in Brooklyn on April 21st, 1966 as the son of two civil rights activists, both deceased as of last year. Went to Brooklyn College for a semester and a half, where you took journalism as your major before dropping out in December of 1985 after a Fall semester in Japan, in which you were present during the second Tokyo Incident in November. Notably, your professor and guide for this semester was Steve Martin, a photojournalist and also a known survivo-"

    "Cut to the chase." West said, eyebrow raised as he interrupted the summation of his life. He didn't know if the guy was trying to butter him up or intimidate him. "From what I'm seeing, this is some sort of lair-" He held up a photo of the thermal mapped underground cavern system, "-And the Big G is involved?" Conrad nodded, and-was that a grin?-for the briefest of moments before he answered the older man. "It is believed that Godzilla has been living in these caverns for decades, as a place to rest between known incidents and as a home in general. His species may have been using it as a nest for centuries." West nodded as he digested this before he responded. "I get it, that there is clearly some sort of expedition planned. What I question is why you need me?" Conrad wryly grinned. "I understand that you have much field experience. In fact, I know for a fact that you've seen the subject in action before."

    While he mostly kept to the news and documentaries like most Americans when it came to Godzilla, West had indeed seen Godzilla in person before; usually miles away in a Helicopter or under a tarp. But the last time he truly saw him in the flesh from a distance was back in '04, at Portugal. He had gotten some good shots but...

    There was loss that day. Bodies were nothing new after a kaiju incursion, but what he had seen before and after Dagon's defeat and incineration stayed with him to this day.

    "I've seen him in action a few times." He dryly replied. Conrad simply nodded then looked over to the shelf where West had kept his mementos. "You've had quite the career so far, Mr. West. Put yourself close to the action. I'd say you know the stakes." Turning around, Conrad spoke up once more. "We'd like you to join and report on the mission as it progresses." West blinked and leaned back in genuine surprise. "I thought you guys liked your secrecy." Conrad nodded before taking a nearby seat in front of a coffee table. "To put it simply, Monarch isn't as trusted as it used to be West, after the unfortunate business at Newfoundland a decade ago." Amongst other things, West idly thought. Monarch was also known for staking claim over sites featuring dormant kaiju. Some felt that Monarch either wasn't responsible enough or should kill the creatures while they slept instead of becoming a nuisance. West held his tongue and replied with "Go on."

    "We need a human perspective. A trusted face to report on the progress of the expedition. Once it begins, report on it as you do. Talk to the other members of the operation. Write about how it progresses once the expedition to the inner tunnels of the lair begins. In other words, simply do your job."

    West nodded. "Understood. If I join-" He made sure to emphasize the if, "-What do I get out of this?"

    Conrad didn't turn his head. "Khouri, show him." Hearing his name called, the younger agent started as if just waking up before putting another folder on West's table. "This will explain a few things." Conrad continued. West opened it and blinked, shaking his head at the numbers.

    This is enough cash to keep me afloat for more then half a year! He slowly turned his head up to Conrad. "You really know your way into a man's heart." Conrad genuinely grinned. "Aside from the monetary incentive given in exchange for joining, I can imagine that reporting on such an event will earn much prestige and reputation for you. Monarch will pay for all travel expenses-" I could get behind that. "-And I understand that you've had some recent difficulty in finding a good case for your articles. Last major one you wrote was in Seoul two years ago, if I recall correctly." West nodded, not sure if the man was dissing him. Looking down at the papers, he spoke up. "Alright, I'll see what I can do. Give me some time to think about it, I'll give you a call with the number you gave me by Monday. But I will say that you really have attention." Conrad smirked as he stood up. "I'm pleased to hear that. We just need to sign a few waivers, and then Khouri and I will be out of your way."

    "Alright, let's do this." West responded, stretching his arms for a moment.

    The waivers and the typical rules were signed and laid out, with the gist mainly being along the lines of, If you reveal the planned expedition before it starts, you will lose all monetary offers and will be banned from joining, Written articles and pictures are to be only be released publicly when the mission is declassified after completion, etc. But West had learned journalistic integrity from the best, and he wasn't the type to destroy one of his best recent sources of incomes over some moral high ground.

    With the waivers finished, Conrad and Khouri scooped up the folders and papers into a briefcase before thanking West for his time and walking back out. For a moment, Conrad turned back before exiting the house with one final sentence. "Monarch is looking forward to working with you, Mr. West."

    And then they were gone, leaving him to his thoughts.

    [-]

    As the agents exited the apartment, the photojournalist paused as he stopped to consider the implications of what had just happened.

    Then, for the first time in a good long while, Franklin West laughed mirthfully, pitching forwards as he caught himself before smiling thinly. Looking to his laptop and the unfinished article that he had little passion or use for anymore, the decision was obvious.

    He deleted the article right then and there. If his contractor from CNN got upset, there was bound to be another reporter in that audience anyway, and West himself had gotten a far better deal from Monarch.

    This was just the break he was waiting for. Going into an underwater station to report on a journey to the center of Godzilla's home base? It was a dream come true for many people in the kaiju business.

    It would be dangerous, but it wasn't like he'd actually be going on the submarine teams. He'd just stay and report on daily life at the base and on the mission from the safety of the control room. Hopefully the photos he would be able to take of the sub footage would be worth it.

    He renamed the title, with the document now labeled as "Monarch Ex". He quickly began the process, writing down a few ideas of what he should do to get ready.

    -Must finish up other scheduled assignments ahead of launch

    -Contact Timmonds, might have some helpful advice for me

    -Catch up on recent declassified Monarch ops

    -Read up on Extraspecies

    -Find out who else may be joining

    -Was last in Japan in 07, should brush up on the language again, might be rusty

    -Work on autobiography in meantime


    After a few years of dry business, things were looking up.

    Franklin West was feeling fantastic.
     
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  6. Threadmarks: Spotlight: 1985
    ScriptGenius12

    ScriptGenius12 Know what you're doing yet?

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    Rising Storm

    By Franklin West


    Been awhile since I wrote in this work in progress. It has been three weeks since those Monarch agents showed up at my door.

    I guess this thing I am writing is a sort of autobiography so far, but I won’t be publishing this.

    Probably. I mainly just write in this to test myself, see what boundaries I can pass as a writer. I haven’t been writing here for a while, but the coming expedition has made me feel twenty years younger, and I guess there are worse ways to burn off all that excess energy.

    Today, I’ll start off with the longest night of my life.


    [-]

    It was a cold November day in Tokyo when the trouble began.

    It was my second year of college, and as part of a student exchange program centered around Journalism, I’d been in Japan for a couple of months in a class taught by Steve Martin.

    Yes, that Steve Martin.

    It was interesting, being in the city where the first major kaiju attack happened. Sure, I got the occasional stink eye for being a foreigner along with the rest of my class, but it wasn’t as bad as it could have been.

    Then the attack on the subway happened. By a pack of Meganulon, the man-sized insect spawn of Megaguirus. The nest was torched by the local defense forces, but that didn’t mean that there weren’t more bugs somewhere in the city. Evacuations began immediately for everyone who wanted to leave.

    Strangely enough, a decent quarter of people still stayed. Maybe they figured that after all these years, all this rebuilding, Tokyo would survive relatively intact. Maybe it was sheer pride, perhaps they thought the comparatively small insects weren’t as much a danger as the big guy and his compatriots.

    My class was one of them. We were all welcome to board the next flight back to the states, but for me there was this feeling, I don’t know what to call it, but I felt I had to stay at least to see what happened next. Must have been the same for the rest of the class when Professor Martin asked us to put it up to a vote, because we were all still in Tokyo the day after the subway battle.

    So of course everything came crashing down the night that followed.

    It was the day before the anniversary of Godzilla’s first siege on Tokyo. We were all in a downtown library near the sea as dusk began to settle, talking about the subway infestation in hushed tones at a big desk. I was right there with the rest of the class, around fifteen of us, when we first heard the sirens.

    The Queen Bee herself had shown up. I felt it when she flew right past the library.


    Megaguirus

    People started running out right then and there.

    I would have joined the others heading for the closest disaster shelter, but something kept me rooted in place, staring out the window with some other students.

    Kept me watching as the lights began to go out, as the Red Ronin itself and a bulky flying silver brick (which I later learned was the first Super X) dropped into the city from above.

    I stayed even as the battle began, Megaguirus moving like a blur around everything the JSDF and KDF could bring. I thought this situation couldn’t have gotten crazier.

    Then Godzilla came tumbling out of the surf with his claws locked around the hide of some giant eel-dragon, and it did.


    [-]

    November 2nd, 1985

    Tokyo, Japan


    Down the yellow tiled staircase, a youthful figure ran. He was a brown skinned man with short and curly dark hair. He buttoned up the red flannel jacket around his torso with one hand, grabbing onto the railing with the other as he advanced downwards.

    Muffled explosions could be heard in the distance above him, alongside titanic roars and shrieks.

    That’s me, by the way.

    “I sure hope those guys are okay.” the younger West thought, making a mental note to inform the nearest authority he could find about the elevators when or if this mess was over.

    Where the rest of the class had immediately dashed for the elevator when the fighting began, West chose the stairs. Assuming the elevators even worked after the sudden blackout, he didn’t want to risk being trapped for hours, more likely days, if anything went wrong.

    West paused for a breath around a corner, taking in where he remembered where all big threats had gone. He saw and heard when Godzilla-Big G himself! - suddenly charged towards the center of the city. Megaguirus, that big dragon bug thing, had flown off to pursue some fighter jets, while that eel-dragon had grabbed the Red Ronin, that famous fighting robot, and then had-

    “God, can’t believe this shit is actually happening…”

    -Then, the creature had suddenly started shooting steam out of her mouth, and before his very eyes, it and the robot began floating above the ground in a cloud of vapor!

    Even after everything he’d seen, that bit of madness had been what finally got him to run for his life.

    He could hear the fires outside, ones that made a crackling sound like that of static from a camer-

    Camera! Mr. Martin!

    His professor, Steve Martin, had gone up to the roof to film the battle at the start! He figured the man would have been wise enough to have left now, if not for the well-known fact that his famous professor had not only been in Tokyo that day in 1954 but had also survived the collapse of the building that he was reporting from.

    A warzone didn’t stop him then, and it wouldn’t stop him now.

    West had just reached the last set of stairs to the bottom as he paused catching his breath. He thought about the shelters only a block away. Then he thought about the old man still possibly at the top.

    “Fuck…” West hissed before he turned and began running up the stairs, sweat on his brow. He simply couldn’t leave Martin to die, even if the man’s priorities were beyond skewed right now.

    [-]

    West staggered near the top landing, gasping for breath. Running up five flights of stairs twice was not his list of favorite things to do. He stumbled out of the door to the fifth floor of the library, the sounds of combat ringing in his ears even more. West caught his breath in big gulps as he struggled to remember the path Martin had taken.

    Said he’d go to the maintenance door…of course!

    West jogged down a hall, pausing to enter a nearby room. The same place he had just been before his class ran away. He entered; books spilled on the ground with bookcases acting as barriers.

    Wind and fire roared from the outside, and despite his current goal and every sense of self-preservation screaming in his body, he moved forwards, breath caught in his throat.

    Sneaking around a bookcase, he peeked around it and saw the city outside the shattered window.

    Half of Tokyo was on fire. The other buildings, few of which were unharmed, had gouges and chunks torn out of them. Large bugs buzzed through the air as gunfire and artillery shot from above and below. In the streets in front of him, at the far center, there was a small park that gave him a nice view, as the large, sight obstructing buildings were far off on the left and right center instead of in front of him.

    West found himself slowly inching near the edge, as if to get a better view.

    Then a massive armored object dropped from the sky into the park, sparks bursting out of it.

    Alarmed, West leapt back in surprise, struggling to keep his balance as wind rippled into the library due to the shockwave caused by the fall. As torn paper rippled into the air while the building shook and groaned, West cautiously looked down as he held onto a table near the edge of the broken glass. The fallen object struggled to get up, looking like a massive suit of red samurai armor-

    Red Ronin!

    The seventy-five-meter mecha had been severely damaged, dust billowing away from it as it got to one knee. One leg was limp and unmoving, wiring torn out the back of it. The other had a massive chunk bitten out of the center of it, wiring and black fluid spilling out. A large stinger puncture, courtesy of Megaguirus, lay embedded in the tri barreled gatling cannon mounted on its right arm, causing it to flicker and spark randomly. The remaining arm held a massive curved sword, one embedded into the ground as the robot steadied itself with the blade like a crutch. It lifted its head up as it tried to move, and for a moment he wondered if the pilot could see him.

    Hikaru Sakimori straight up broke and dislocated a leg when the Tian-Lung dropped him. The fact that he was still moving at all isn’t just true grit, it’s solid courage. Man was in the zone alright.

    “Jesus Christ…” West whispered in shock just before the robot jerked it’s head up as a shadow fell over it.

    The growl that followed was more than enough for West to move. He dashed out of the room, turning back only once to see the robot lifting its sword out of the concrete, like Excalibur out of the stone.

    West ran, cursing up a storm in his mind as he dashed down another hallway-

    There! On the left, he saw an open brown door. Maintenance had been written in both Japanese and English on it, and as a result he didn’t hesitate to move to it. When he pulled it open, the brief burst of cool air fueled his suspicions. Passing a bare corridor, he turned to a set of winding stairs with a groan as he looked up. There was an open door at the top of those stairs, one with a lock on it that had been picked open, the door slowly creaking as the wind from outside pushed on it. At once, West knew where his professor had gone.

    “Crazy old man…”

    I tell myself that these days.

    The now familiar roar of the warzone echoed from outside, getting closer and closer with every step he ran up.

    “Can’t believe I’m actually doing this shit…”

    [-]

    The second West opened the door to the outside, he burst forwards and froze in his tracks, eyes widening as he sputtered and gasped in shock.

    Floating in the night sky, steam billowed around the twisted form of a serpentine dragon moving like a snake underwater as she slowly turned her head down to the street below her, her eyes a solid glowing yellow. She had a long yellow body with splotches of purple scales across it. The purple head was boxy with two antlers on the back of the skull. Her fanged jaw snapped shut as a green hood like that of a cobra bristled and folded down her long, segmented green neck. Small, three fingered claws twitched as her thicker, muscly yellow legs with purple segments of armor at the edges stretched forwards like grasping talons. A bladed toe at the end of each foot rose, curved like a sickle. She opened her mouth with a booming hiss as red-hot steam billowed out of it, twisting and winding around her like a snake. Yellow fins at the sides, a purple segmented tail nearly as long as the dragon’s body terminated in a purple and yellow tail. In a way, half of it resembled the Lung of Chinese mythology, but West knew exactly who he was looking at.

    Tian-Lung. The Butcher of Hong Kong.

    And she was about to destroy the Red Ronin! The creature tilted her body as if she was about to pounce, right before three crackling beams of red energy fired from below, slamming into her head and hide.

    Attacks from the last three maser cannons in the city.

    The dragon let loose an echoing howl as she turned her head when the artificial red lightning crackled across her scales. She twisted in the air, hitting the side of a building with her tail before she recovered. Turning her head to the left, she let loose a withering glare with her glowing yellow eyes. Smoke dissipated off from where she had been struck as she thrust her body downwards, jaws snapping. Barely any damage aside from a few scorched marks could be seen. The Tian-Lung “swam” down the air around a corner, twisting her head to dodge another maser blast in process. Lowering herself to the ground, she got on all fours and burst forwards around the corner, smacking the tail into the side of a small building and sending up a spider web of cracks. Up ahead, behind the block she had just entered, he could see steam billowing above rooftops as she loudly stomped her way across the city.

    God help anyone in the streets.

    West blanched in horror at the sight before remembering his goal. He quickly turned around a corner of the rooftop, seeing the shine of the sea right behind the waterfront library as he rounded the next corner on library roof, going from the right when he had exited to the left-

    And there he was, holding up a tripod mounted camera at the steel fence at the edge of the roof.

    Steve Martin stood rigidly, filming the sights in front of him. The old survivor was in surprisingly good shape for a man in his late sixties. The tall man had salt and pepper colored hair alongside a short beard of the same color. He wore a thick blue sweater over a white shirt, and as Franklin neared him, he could almost hear the man whispering something to himself. “Now it seems Tokyo has no-”

    “Professor! What the hell are you doing up here?” West shouted; tact gone considering the situation.

    Martin shook his head as if awakening from a stupor. He turned to West, setting the stand and the camera down. “Franklin? You came back?” he asked.

    West shook his head, turning to gesture to the scene in front of them. “Mr. Martin, the entire city is under attack, we have to go right now dammit-“ West turned and gaped again when he saw what was happening on this side of the library.

    The streets below him were just as chaotic as the rest of Tokyo. Abandoned cars and trucks were strewn about the streets by the dozens. A burning, blocky metallic craft-the Super X-had crashed in the middle of a tram rail several streets to the right. The craft was heavily damaged, with scorch marks across it. The burnt corpses of three meganulons lay on top of and around it, with small severed claws embedded into the metal at several points. There were cracks in the concrete of the street where it had fallen, and a mix of glowing green and red fluids seeped out of a broken, crackling tube in its front that almost resembled a flashlight. Two large, curved grooves had been sliced on both sides of the ship.

    An explosion of sparks suddenly burst from the back of the Super X, making West flinch as smoke began drifting out of the back of the broken engine.

    Megaguirus did it in. Dodged it's laser and sliced the engine near clean in half with her stinger, curled around it and didn’t let go until it had ripped the ship a new one.

    Looking around, West could see that a crashed ship was the least of their worries. In the distance to the right of the library, far down the road he could see the sea.

    Burned tanks lined the edge of it, while massive saurian footprints on the street leading into the city made it clear that this was where Godzilla and the Tian-Lung had emerged into the city. Broken windows and buildings with chunks torn out of them led all the way to the library. West shook his head in disbelief.

    “I was right here! If they had moved closer, if one of them had so much as bumped into this place…we’d all be goners!”

    He turned to Martin, knowing they didn’t have much time left. “Sir, why the Hell are you still here? Can’t you see we really, really need to leave?” Martin turned to him; eyes downcast before he flicked his head up. “I know how you feel, but I already had this camera and it all just-“ He gestured to the city as a roar echoed in the distance. Both men saw the clawed, armored form of Megaguirus fly above the tallest buildings in the area.

    West continued “-It all just came naturally to me. I-“ He continued solemnly. “I just couldn’t stand by. Tokyo, what happened here-“ He looked forlorn, and for a moment West’s reply died in his throat as the man kept talking. “-has been part of my life for so long.” Martin took a moment to compose himself, and West couldn’t help but listen even as combat echoed around them. “So when we find ourselves in the midst of an even bigger attack, I need to get involved. I need to report on the story.” He sighed, breath misting in the cold air. “I would never forgive myself if I stood by and did nothing when Godzilla came back to Tokyo.” He half-whispered as if having trouble justifying it to his student and himself. West took a deep breath as he prepared his response. “Look man, I get what you’re feeling. But this is your life. You’ve already survived one near-death, and I’m sure you got enough footage already. Please, let's just get the hell outta here…” West pleaded earnestly, his anger changing to something else.

    Martin pursed his lips as he held the camera, turning back to the city as the fires crackled. “West.” He began. “I understand your worries. But I still cannot leave.”

    “Why?”

    “I was there to the end last time. It is only proper that tonight, I remain until dawn once more.” Martin said, grim but determined in his sincerity. Clenching his fists, West was about to flat out call the older man crazy when a screech came from far above and away.

    Both jerked their heads up in surprise to the night sky where Megaguirus was flailing about as she rapidly retreated higher into the sky.

    A trail of yellow blood poured down from where her stinger had been bitten or torn off, splashing onto the windows of the National Diet Building below her in the process.

    “How-“ West yelled in surprise, having seen how deftly she had dodged missiles and energy blasts earlier.

    He got his answer when a blue beam of fire blasted forwards from the streets of the inner city, striking Megaguirus dead center. The insect queen burst into flames.

    With one final shriek, she fell from the sky, belly first-

    Right over Tokyo Tower!

    Miles away as they were, West and Martin could have felt it when the spire of the tower pierced through her abdomen as she fell upon it. Then with a brief wobble, the tower collapsed with the added weight of the queen.

    Half of the snapped tower was still visible as the flames spread from her dead body, igniting it like a torch.

    West was agape as a familiar earthshaking roar, victorious and bombastic, rattled across the area.

    Godzilla.

    Nothing more needed to be said. Martin watched the burning insect kaiju, a firm seriousness in his eyes that contrasted with West’s shock.

    West shook where he stood as he took deep breaths. Okay, at least with Megaguirus becoming a roasted kebab, that was one monster down. Two to go. But where was the other one-

    He was interrupted when he heard a metallic screech. He looked down to a tram rail and saw a line of eight silver tram cars screeching to a stop as they came across the fallen ship that blocked their way.

    The conductor of that tram had been going back into the city again and again to save as many people as possible. I heard they have an exhibit to that crew down in Osaka these days.

    West looked down. “Shit, that doesn’t look good." Already he could see hands pounding on the powerful glass, futilely trying to break out. “Professor, what should we-“

    “It’s happening again.” The man said as he forlornly looked at the cars below, as if coming to a realization. “What-“ then West came to a realization of his own, eyes wildly looking around.

    Megaguirus was dead or at the very least incapacitated. Godzilla was deeper into the city, a moderate distance from the shore. Where was the Tian-Lung?

    The top of a tall building in the distance burst open, glass and concrete blasting outwards like a rain of hail. Steam billowed out of it, giving off the impression of a volcano erupting.

    Yellow eyes glowed as the Tian-Lung moved forwards, steam billowing around her like wings.

    A maser dish held in her maw snapped with a crunch, and then dropped from her jaws onto the streets below.

    Remembering the blood-chilling sight of the creature from earlier, West could only watch as she smoothly moved around nearby buildings as if crawling around trees in a swamp. The creature moved ahead down a path near the library, her scales glistening off the nearby windows. For a moment, she crouched her form below a neighborhood as she touched down, and then they could only hear the telltale stomps that heralded disaster. For almost a minute West could hear his own heartbeat in tandem with the noises right before a familiar purple antlered skull turned around the corner of a building to the right.

    The Tian-Lung stomped forwards as she leaned her heavy long body downwards like a predator ready to pounce. “Does she see us?” West asked, stammering in fear as she moved down the streets, the nearby apartments buildings and shops looking mere inches away due to her size and presence.

    Martin’s gaze became stony. “She is not here for us.” He replied. West could see his mentor trembling as he stepped away from the camera, if only for a moment.

    He soon understood the man’s horror when the Tian-Lung crept upon the stranded train, salivating.

    “Jesus Christ NO!”
    he yelled, stepping back in unrestrained horror.

    West turned to Martin, aghast, as the dragon stood over the car at the end, her two scythe toes clacking on the road as she leaned over it.

    Her segmented tongue actually flicked out and licked across her jaw.

    The creature reached downwards with apparent glee before it grabbed onto the car and with deceptive power considering their small size, tore it from the rest of the tram.

    Martin set his camera down, eyes downcast. West held his hands to his face, his eyes becoming wet from sweat or something else. It was one thing seeing it on the news and hearing planes and tanks crash or explode in the distance. Seeing it up close-

    Nothing could have prepared him for anything like….this.

    Then with a lunge she squeezed the torn off car.

    Even today, if I imagine it really hard, I can still hear the sound. Not screams.

    The car crumpled, and red fluid leaked out like slime.

    A squelch.

    The mutant dragon leaned the car back and swallowed the pulped remains down.

    Sitting in the next car, knowing what would happen to you next…..it was a fate he wished on no one.

    Tossing the car behind her like trash, she grabbed another car. West turned to Martin in disbelief as she squeezed it too. “….We have to, we can’t just run, we need to do somethi-“ And then fell silent, heaving as he and Martin met each other’s gaze.

    They could not fight the Tian-Lung as well as they could fight any other giant monster or disaster.

    Dropping another car from her red stained mouth, the monster now seemed to be almost grinning at this rate.

    As she leaned down, approaching another car, the sound of thunder boomed from further into the city.

    West paused, slowly turning his head as he heard it. In the distance, the sound came again and again as dust and snow-

    No, ash began to drift in a cloud as a massive form began moving away from the center, picking up speed where the fires and destruction had been at their worst.

    It's form was obscured by the debris clouds, but the tell-tale flashes of blue light from within made his identity very clear.

    “Godzilla.” he and Martin intoned at the same time, West’s voice breaking in shock while Martin sounded neutral as the figure in the cloud of ash and dust got closer and closer, footsteps thundering.

    The Tian-Lung had gripped one of the last cars loosely, leaning over it as she opened her maw. Fangs gleamed within as saliva dripped onto the roof. She was going to straight up tear into this one.

    Cars shook on the streets as a towering, scaly form with gleaming claws and fangs burst from the ashes. Orange eyes blazed with fire.

    Windows rattled then outright broke as Godzilla lunged forwards and slammed his left fist into the side of the Tian-Lung’s face, sending out a shockwave that flung cars and fallen bodies across the streets, sending them rolling. Concrete shuddered and windows cracked.

    Maybe it was his own power. Maybe it was the other monster’s ability to ride air currents. Either way, the Tian-Lung went flying into the sky like a crumpled toy, purple blood trailing out of her jaw as she landed at the entrance of the bay.

    From the roof, West held onto the railing, grimacing as he felt the wind whip past him and Martin, the old man watching with newfound intensity West had never seen before in him.

    The Tian-Lung struggled up, her claws and head downcast as she flailed like a drunkard, steam rising off the bruised, bloody side of her face where she had been hit.

    Glaring balefully ahead at his latest rival, Godzilla stomped onto the ground, his gills slick with blue heat as his spines occasionally flashed. Seeing him turn the corner at least half a building or so away, West may or may not have fallen on his ass in shock.

    Rapidly picking himself up from a fall that definitely did not happen, West watched wide eyed as the two approached.

    The battle was going to go down right here, right now-

    The people! As Martin quickly pulled his camera over to the right side to get more of a view, West leaned over the railing as a cacophony of metallic squealing suddenly stopped.

    The dropped train car had slid out of the monster's grasp down the street before coming to a halt just before it could crash into the library. To his relief, he could see people exiting the car that had nearly been torn apart and dropped. They were disheveled, a few limping and being supported by other people. Cupping his hands to his mouth, West hoped he would be heard. “In here! Safe!” he yelled, hoping they would get the message. A few heads turned up to him. He had no idea if any of them knew English, if they could even hear him over the chaos. But after everything, he wasn’t going to stand here and do nothing anymore!

    Martin looked to West, nodding with approval, a genuine smile on his face. “Hold onto something, Franklin.’’ He replied. West jumped after hearing a guttural screech, turning to see the Tian-Lung close her mouth in the distance.

    Martin was by his side in a moment as Godzilla tilted his head and opened his mouth, releasing a misty breath as air was drawn into his massive lungs.

    Martin quickly held out two red ear plugs. “Here, I’ve been using my own since the start.” He stated. West thanked him before stuffing the plugs in his ears as quickly as possible.

    This turned out to be wise, as Godzilla let loose one of his signature air-shaking roars.

    West still covered his ears, grimacing like he had a headache. Still better then getting flat out floored on the ground by the noise.

    As Godzilla began to move, cars rattling out of their positions with every pounding step, the Tian-Lung did the same, swishing her tail in agitation as steam billowed out of the sides of her jaws.

    She crouched and sped forwards like a giant cheetah, claws and open jaw extended while steam burst from the back of her hood.

    Godzilla sent rubble and glass into the air with every step, knocking the Super X into an unfortunate sushi place with his tail as he charged.

    West grimaced, holding onto the railing for dear life when they collided.

    The shockwave that burst forwards made the earlier one look like a grenade.

    Buildings rumbled, and West could see the air current’s distortion as it shattered every window four buildings away, and even now he was almost taken off his feet when he and Martin, holding his tripod like a staff, ducked as the current passed above their heads. Shaking it off, he lifted his head and found himself speechless.

    Sparks flew into the air as both creatures slashed at one another, snapping and swiping with their natural weapons. The titans crashed their bulk together, knocking chunks off buildings as they pushed back and forth, neither letting up.

    Each impact sounded like thunder.

    Before long, the Tian-Lung struck forwards like a viper, missing Godzilla by inches as he tilted his head. As her face slammed through an office building, Godzilla grabbed onto her neck and hood. With a growl he charged, lifting the taller monster and slamming her by her long neck down onto another building.

    Falling on her back in the rubble, the dragon lashed out with a clawed leg, slashing a red line across Godzilla’s chest. The monster king stepped back, running a hand across the bleeding cut as she recovered and reared up as she thrust her horned head at his skull. A puff of blue mist came out of his maw as Godzilla stumbled from the force of the headbutt, embedding his spines into an office building behind him.

    Plaster and glass fell like a waterfall down his back while the Tian-Lung shoved her girth forwards, trying to gain the advantage as she slashed at his face with her small claws. Godzilla bit down on one claw with a grimace mid swipe, causing his opponent to shriek as she slammed her tail around like a whip. She sent rubble into the air as Godzilla stomped onto a sickle toed foot to prevent another attempt to gut him. Her free toe kicked out wildly, managing to score a sparking hit on the side of a thick grey leg. She opened her maw, blasting out scalding steam over Godzilla as more debris was sent into the air like hail.

    West and Martin stepped back as pieces of glass began to fall on the roof randomly. West felt his back hit the wall of the staircase just as he heard a thunderous slam from above. He looked up, seeing that the battle had sent a chunk of concrete into the roof of the staircase like a throwing knife.

    Suddenly, a piece of dirt dropped onto the staircase from where the concrete was embedded-

    And then a piece of the stone the size of an apple, broken by the impact of the concrete, fell downwards before he could react.

    Thudding onto his head, West gasped out a pained breath as he suddenly stumbled, something hot and sticky falling across his eyes as fell forwards onto the ground, roars and shouts growing faint.

    Vision going black, he heard someone call his name as feet stomped towards-







    “Ah!” West yelled in surprise as water splashed onto his face. He felt cloth across his forehead, blurred vision clearing as he saw Martin standing over him, concern in the older man’s eyes. “Are you okay, Franklin?” he said, genuinely worried. Franklin was glad to see the old man wasn’t that crazy after all as he groaned out a weak “Yeah…”.

    Hearing his heartbeat in his current state, he pressed his ear to the ground and was surprised to hear what sounded like movement below-voices? Perhaps he’d been lucky, or the people on the ground all had the same idea. He hoped everyone in the tram’s got out okay.

    He looked to Martin and saw that the man’s pants leg was torn, and the cloth bandaged around his head quickly became clear. He accepted a hand from the man as he was hauled to his feet. Shaking and shrugging his shoulders, he looked to Martin. “How long was I just-“

    “Five minutes.” Martin chimed, looking down at a wristwatch. He paused and looked West dead in the eye as the sound of crunching and roaring echoed behind the building. “The people on the streets, they got out of the cars, they got inside here.” He said, calm as usual.

    Half the tension in West’s body left despite his pain, relief entering him before he blinked, realizing what was just behind him.

    West slowly turned and walked to the railing, eyes wide once more. “Holy shit!”

    The downtown area had been reduced to rubble. And right there, in the middle of the destroyed streets-

    Godzilla held the Tian-Lung by her long neck, a fanged sneer on his face as she tried to break out of his grip, howling as she sent out random blasts of steam. It was almost like a very violent dance as crumpled train cars and rubble were kicked or slapped away by their massive legs and long tails.

    Godzilla eyes gleamed for a moment before he suddenly lifted the dragon by her hooded head, slamming her onto her back behind him and audibly cracking the broken streets even more. “Woah!” West yelled in surprise, shocked that even Godzilla was able to pull off such a move. “How did he know-“

    “Gojira.” a soft voice said. Too caught up in the fight to have noticed, he turned around in surprise alongside Martin.

    A young-looking Japanese girl, maybe twelve or younger by the looks of it, had snuck up to the railing right next to them, peeking over it as she watched the fight. She had unkempt black hair reaching down to her shoulders alongside a simple white shirt and baggy pants. Judging by the smatterings of dirt and dust on her clothing and arms, she had been one of the locals who just escaped the train. But what was she doing here?

    A familiar howl reminded him.

    West looked back to see Godzilla still holding onto the dragon’s neck from the side. There were purple-stained tears in her yellow hood, and one of her arms hung limp and bleeding while red blood dripped from the slashes across Godzilla's neck and shoulders. Three red cuts over his scaly brow stained half his face in blood.

    He pushed forwards, avoiding her snapping jaws as he slammed her head into the ground. As the dragon raged, he let go by shoving her back. He backhanded a sickle toed leg kicking out, stumbling her to the ground before she sprung into a lunge as Godzilla slammed his fists down like hammers, knocking her to the rubble strewn ground. Grabbing onto her jaws, he held on as she struggled in his grip, firing out a stream of steam. As the tips of his claws began glowing red hot, Godzilla’s eyes narrowed.

    Bright light shined down his dorsal plates as power hummed in the air.

    He tried to pry her maw open as he swung her head from side to side, aiming her jaws so that another blast of steam wouldn’t hit him in the face. He waited until just after she had finished firing her current torrent before quickly grabbing her antlers, blue light thrumming across his back.


    Pulling her snarling, snapping head up to his face, Godzilla stared down into her blazing eyes.

    Godzilla thrust his visage forwards and locked his jaws over her own.

    Blue fire shined through his gills and eyes.

    The Tian-Lung’s eyes widened for a moment before an inferno of blue flame flashed down her armored neck and hood, bursting out from in between her scales.



    West grunted and averted his eyes as her entire head was consumed by flame.

    There was a great pulse of heat, and when he moved his hands down, the first sight to greet him was the falling body of the Tian-Lung. Fiery smoke poured from the stump where her neck and head used to be, and her bright scales had become warped and charred across her body.

    And then there was Godzilla. Black smoke drifted out of his nose and mouth before he cleared them with a shake of his head and a cough. The slashes on his upper body had stopped bleeding, with the blood on his brow having faded into the same charcoal color as the rest of his scales. The long cut across his chest was already fading.

    Leaning over the steaming body of his dead opponent, Godzilla sniffed it before biting into the shoulder. Tearing off a piece of scorched meat, Godzilla leaned his head back like a crocodile, snapping his jaws as he swallowed the flesh down.

    At this point, West was getting too tired to give a shit. Shaking his bandaged head, he turned to look at the girl, who was watching the end of the battle end of the battle with an intense look in her hard, brown eyes. It was a look he would often see in the survivors of kaiju battles years after the fact. As Martin gave a knowing look, West fumbled to pick up some of the Japanese language he knew. “Where… your parents at?” he asked, hoping he didn’t sound like Gollum. As the girl turned her head, as if finally realizing he was there, he heard a panicked voice from the stairwell. “Chifuyu?”

    A disheveled, scuffed up man with short spiky hair matted with dust stumbled onto the roof. He wore a white shirt with a black tie hastily clipped on. Seemed like the man had just gotten home from work when the attack began.

    He turned rapidly to the girl. “Chifuyu!” He shouted in recognition as he approached her, eyes turning widely from the other men to the victorious Godzilla. She turned to him. “Don’t run off like that at these times, your mother and I need to stay together we aren’t safe this close to Gojira-“ he continued to go on, worry clearly in his voice as he grabbed her hand and gently began to pull her with him. She turned back to Godzilla with a look in her eyes he couldn’t identify before she nevertheless turned back, keeping in pace with what he guessed to be her father.

    Looking back, it’s still hard to believe that this little girl would have grown up to be one of the most infamous mecha pilots in history.

    Godzilla marched ahead in the direction of the sea, pausing to grab the Tian-Lung by the tail, dragging the corpse with him as he advanced.

    It made sense for him to be hungry after a long night of fighting.

    Martin watched, the brief ghost of a smile. “He won.” He said softly. “Godzilla, in a way, saved the city from two worse threats. One that he inadvertently brought here. I have a feeling that after today-” Marin paused and looked back, eyes widening slightly alongside Franklin’s as a small trickle of survivors began exiting the stairway. He continued, slowly now.

    “-neither monster nor man will go on unchanged by such an experience. Time will tell if this night is as costly as the first attack nearly thirty-one years ago.” For a moment Martin was truly in his element, a reporter right on the scene.

    West nodded, agreeing on some level as he heard the tell-tale sound of a large foot impacting into concrete.

    West spun around to regard the form of Red Ronin as it turned the same corner the Tian-Lung had come from. Limping forwards, the mech's sword was raised like a torch.

    The charred head of Megaguirus was impaled on the top of it, yellow blood sizzling down the blade’s length.

    It never hurt to check for a pulse.

    The Mecha stood vigilantly over the last few citizens still evacuating from the train cars, watching silently as Godzilla dragged the dragon’s body on his way back to the sea. Both warriors from different times, and both who had survived this long night victorious.

    For now.

    More of the train survivors had begun to join them on the rooftop, all silently watching, either in too much awe or terror to speak.

    Entering the frigid waters of Tokyo Bay, Godzilla paused and shifted his fiery gaze back to the devastated city.

    Was he looking at Red Ronin? The library? At Tokyo itself?

    It was almost a custom, what happened next.

    Godzilla spread his claws out, tilting his head back and opening his fanged maw, atomic heat flashing within.

    In the crowd, the tram survivors, born from experience, wisely began to cover their ears.

    When Godzilla roared this time, West felt it down to his very bones.

    [-]

    The typical procedures were put into place afterwards. The remaining Meganulon were finished off by the military, with the death of Megaguirus having put the bugs into complete disarray. The survivors (me included) went through quick radiation and cell decontamination. Stung like a son of a bitch, but better safe than sorry. Resettlement and reconstruction became a big topic.

    It later turned out that the elevators were working after all.

    Flights back home were delayed, and the rest of the semester was all but canceled after what had just happened. But for me, it didn’t matter much by the time I got home. My parents were disappointed to learn I was dropping out, but I nevertheless got a hero’s welcome.

    That was my second longest night.

    After living through one of the biggest battles of the decade, I finally knew what I wanted to do with my life.
     
    ATP likes this.
  7. Extras: Titan File: Atlantic Scourge
    ScriptGenius12

    ScriptGenius12 Know what you're doing yet?

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    Monarch Database: A

    Accessing Profile: Atlantic Scourge

    Latest Update: 12/13/13


    Species: Atlantic Scourge

    Type: Oceanic Crustacean

    Known Specimens: Atlantic Scourge I [DECEASED]/II [ACTIVE]

    Threat Level: IV (I)/V (II)

    Height: 60 Meters (I)/110 Meters (II)

    Origin: Unknown [Connection to Panthalassa Sea hypothesized]

    Mass: 50,000 Tons (I)/62,000 Tons (II)

    Characteristics:

    -The Atlantic Scourge, named for its main habitat, is a well known species, having been around since the second wave of kaiju in the 1960's.

    Physically, the Scourges resemble bipedal crustaceans with heavy armor. The male Scourge's shell was solid red in color, while the female has yellow armor with black shading around the edges.

    They have two large chelas (claws) like most crustacean kaiju, and have a bulky muscle mass around their torso's and limbs. They have two trunk-esque legs in comparison to the multiple legs of the typical crustacean. The claws are thick like a large male lobsters, with bladed bone tips at the ends of the chelas (claws).

    The Scourge has a large head resembling that of known deep sea fish species, albeit with heavier segmented armor across the skull and neck. It's two black eyes resemble that of known Anglerfish species.

    A single horn protrudes from the nasal region, earning the Scourge the informal name of "Rhinosaurus" in some circles. It's legs have three toes splayed around it, with the middle toe protruding from the front while the latter two toes, resembling chelas, emerge from left to right.

    They have small, segmented tails in contrasts to their larger body parts. Thick armor on the front and back hunches the Scourge over, while larges spikes emerge across its back and shoulders. White, scaled flesh can be see in gaps on its neck, shoulders, and arms. Other then that, the Scourges are fully armored head to toe.

    -Like most high class aquatic kaiju, they have displayed very high levels of strength and durability, especially in the female.

    This is alongside a massive resistance to depth pressures in the ocean, once again standard to most other similar ocean-going megafauna.

    The female Scourge also is notably far bigger then the male. It is unknown if this size disparity is normal for the species, or if the only known female happens to be predisposed to Gigantism.

    -While the Scourges are carnivorous, the lack of massive megafauna die offs in areas where they inhabit with a few exceptions has lead to the hypothesis that they have organic reactors that provide a steady source of energy in lieu of having to constantly eat. Most evidence came from an autopsy of the first Scourge, whose remains had been reduced to 75% of its previous mass before it could be safely acquired. Thus, the truth about its metabolism and diet is still not fully understood.

    Feeding on organic material is likely only done to get a quick source of energy after prolonged combat or travel, as indicated by the Indian Incursion.

    -When not in battle, the Scourge roams the Atlantic Ocean, either by swimming or by walking slowly across the sea floor. When angered or finding itself with an obstacle in its way, it will immediately become violent.

    -In combat, the Scourge is a fierce opponent. It often tries to get in close to attack with its claws and teeth. Aside from providing considerable protection, its heavy bulk also acts as an effective ramming weapon. It's claws are mainly used as bludgeons, but have been used to crush the heads of smaller opponents.

    At range the Scourge has a habit of tossing debris like boulders, vehicles, and fallen structures. This is typically done above ground without water pressures dampening the inertia of thrown objects. Like most aquatic kaiju, it is slightly faster in combat below water and is at it's fastest while swimming unimpeded. The Scourge is a very aggressive fighter, repeatedly attacking the closest opponent without pause.

    However if it is injured enough and/or has a large amount of armored sections badly damaged, it will retreat quickly. Owing to her large size, the female Scourge has been noted to have moved inland more often and to attack faster and with more aggressive body language then the male, whom was observed to attempt to intimidate foes and prey by waving its claws around before initiating combat. The male also retreated earlier compared to the female, who took more damage before retreating, often attacking anything in the way of an escape in a fury even higher then she would display in combat.

    -Exclusive to the female is the ability to spit a highly corrosive enzyme capable of melting through concrete, steel, and other materials in seconds or minutes depending on the construction and size involved. The organic acid has alternatively taken the form of a thick, foaming fluid or a cloudy spray, indicating that the Female has a high control over the enzymes, similar to other kaiju with potent control over their internal energy stores.

    It has been observed as highly irritative towards other kaiju, with low level specimens having been killed outright through repeated exposure. The Scourge tends to use this ability after prolonged combat, and only at very close range. Monarch agents have speculated that the enzyme is meant to distract powerful opponents when the Scourge is at a disadvantage, or to act as a "Seasoning" against a losing opponent, one intended for consumption by the Scourge afterwards.

    -Both Scourges have displayed a slow regenerative ability, with broken limbs and shattered armor pieces appearing healed in the years between attacks. The more severe an injury, the longer the organism takes to heal.

    -The Scourge is sensitive to certain signals, which has proved useful in luring it away from populated areas during incursions.

    Weaknesses:

    -The Scourge has potent close range offense and defense capability, but it's relative sluggishness on land along with its heavy armor has resulted in the species having a strong but slow melee capability and speed, and can allow faster megafauna to repeatedly dodge its claws and charges to slowly exhaust it.

    -Extremely low temperature has proved effective at repelling the current Scourge in high amounts, as is common with crustacean megafauna.

    -Getting repeated blasted with energy attacks and then hit with physical force can break sections of its armor if done multiple times, allowing rival kaiju with decent energy and melee capabilities to create new weak spots as a fight goes on.

    Incursions:

    -The first Atlantic Scourge appeared at Letchi Island in 1967. The island was infamously inhabited by members of the radical Red Bamboo terrorist organization. There, they used a sprayed chemical mixture using a native fruit and several other unknown ingredients in order to get it to stay in the waters surrounding the island, essentially using the organism as a giant guard animal.

    When Godzilla came ashore after being attracted by nuclear waste created by the Red Bamboo's weapon tests, the Scourge was their first defense, quickly engaging the larger monster in combat. Despite the two seeming evenly matched at the shore and below sea according to witness accounts, the Scourge's armor proved vulnerable to Godzilla's atomic breath. After having its left arm blown off alongside parts of its armor after being superheated, the Scourge quickly retreated from its former territory.

    With the terrorist groups destruction during the rest of the incident, the exact nature of the chemical they used is unknown, but Monarch agents assigned to the case have speculated that it may have been an artificial pheremone meant to trick the Scourge into believing that a female was close by.

    -The first Scourge appeared again in 1975, this time being attracted to the African city of Accra alongside dozens of other kaiju by Mechagodzilla's signal generator. The Scourge notably did not come ashore during the massive incursion, instead remaining in the Gulf of Guinea where it would fight Sarcosteon in the water. The Scourge quickly retreated into deeper waters when Godzilla arrived but nevertheless remained to watch the ensuing fight against MG from afar. After MG was decapitated and torn apart by Godzilla and the other kaiju, Scourge headed back into the Atlantic Ocean alongside the other surviving kaiju.

    It is believed that the recognition of Godzilla's "Alpha Status" during the final stages of the incursion is what prevented a free for all fight breaking out again during the mass departure.

    -In 1985, the Scourge was spotted in the waters near New England. G-Force Scientists in the American G-Base HQ attempted to use a K-Repeller derived from MG's K-Attracting signal device to mentally force the creature to leave. Instead, the machine ended up causing the creature to move inland, where it attacked the city of Boston in Massachusetts. After the machine was destroyed outright by personnel, the Scourge returned to sea after nearly ten minutes. However, the resulting property damage was fined to the KDF while the "Kaiju Repeller" project was all but completely shut down.

    -The much larger Atlantic Scourge II emerged in 1990, where she came ashore at Mumbai, India. The Gandiva mecha was deployed against her. The mecha initially had the advantage with its powerful ranged weaponry. Soon after combat began, AS I rapidly came ashore and attacked Gandiva, apparently in defense of the second. Both managed to severely damage it before the entity known as DragonLotus intervened to assist Gandiva.

    Working together, both managed to severely injure the crustaceans. AS I had its chest armor blasted open, causing it to bleed severely after it had moved in front of a combined energy attack aimed at AS II. The female's face was severely burned from a close range incendiary wind blast inflicted by DL. Both then proceeded to retreat into the Bay of Bengal.

    Twenty minutes later, AS II turned on the near comatose AS I and disemboweled him before tearing him in half. His remains were near completely consumed by AS II before she escaped into the open ocean.

    -In 1994, a battle between Titanosaurus and Atlantic Scourge II resulted in both kaiju breaking a hidden cavern ceiling before falling into the Atlantic Mer Kingdom of Brine.

    Multiple buildings are destroyed, and the Mer species living in the kingdom suffered massive casualties in the battle between the two monsters.

    Titanosaurus retreated after having it's sails torn, and AS II caused some more damage as it briefly explored the cavern city, later engaging a passing Gotengo as it was leaving. AS II retreated after displaying an adverse reaction to the ships cryonic weaponry.

    Notably, this was one of the first Level-4 widely confirmed encounters between extraspecies and kaiju post-1954.

    -During a test of the highly classified Project: ORCA in 1998, AS II was unintentionally lured to Newfoundland alongside Titanosaurus, Kraken III, and Kiyohime. USA MOAB bombing managed to crack and burn it's shell at several points, but it nevertheless kept moving. The ORCA devices activation is believed to have unbalanced the natural self-preservation instincts of the megafauna involved.

    The device was successfully flown out by helicopter to the sea by a six man Monarch crew, where it was destroyed after being dropped in the ocean with planted explosive paste.

    Lured back to sea, the four kaiju fought, with AS II notably holding an advantage before the four collectively dispersed once the device ceased transmitting.

    -While on route to the coastline of Virginia during the Oil Breach in 2011, personnel on the USA submarine Newton observed AS II battling around a dozen breachers underwater. She was noted to use her claws to target and crush the brains and spines of the offending organisms. AS II was then observed to then retreat farther out to sea, dragging the bodies of four dead breachers with her for future consumption.

    [CLASSIFIED-LEVEL 4 ACCESS REQUIRED]

    Starting from the beginning of 1990 to the current time of publication, AS II has been responsible for multiple attacks on migrating Merfolk tribes, modern undersea kingdoms, and on human shipping industries over the Atlantic Ocean. Most of the former attacks have been deemed too miscellaneous for large incident reports or have only recently been revealed by aquatic liminal species as per the Cultural Exchange Act.

    2013:
    Earlier this December, the long-planned Operation: URSULA was launched, featuring cooperation with Monarch, the KDF, and with all three Atlantic Merfolk kingdom militaries with the goal of incapacitating AS II long-term. Notable officials involved included Commander Douglas Gordon and Arthur I of the C Mer Dynasty.

    With the use of sonic, cryonic, and explosive weaponry, the plan is to lure AS II to a massive trench in the Atlantic. It will then be forced into a hibernating state with the Gotengo's AZ Cannon. Afterwards, the flooring above the trench is to be collapsed with explosive charges, dropping it into the trench while additional explosives are used to collapse geological structures surrounding it, which will further trap the frozen kaiju.

    If the mission is successful, the Scourge will likely be sealed for seven years or more at the highest estimate.

    Update: As of the thirteenth of December, communications from the Gotengo crew indicate that the operation has mostly succeeded.

    Misc:

    -There have been no recorded encounters between Godzilla and AS II.

    However, Monarch Command has speculated that if Godzilla was ever successfully terminated or severely incapacitated, the female Atlantic Scourge would be a potential contender for the status of Alpha amongst other successors.

    -Agent S.G.R., Clearance Level 4

    Note: Monarch's Template for kaiju profiles has changed since last year.


    [-]

    A/N: OOC

    Full credit to Mr. Jay and Matt Frank from the CKC forums for the creation of the Atlantic Scourge character and to the creators of all the other monsters made for the now cancelled Colossal Kaiju Combat game. I give thanks to these creators and the game for the inspiration they gave me. No profit is intended from any mention of or in-story appearances from the CKC Kaiju.
     
    ATP likes this.
  8. Threadmarks: DMZ
    ScriptGenius12

    ScriptGenius12 Know what you're doing yet?

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    The Korean Peninsula has a long history, from its beginnings to conflicts with ancient Japan. Korea experienced multiple invasions by the latter that were ended by retreat or stalemate in the 1500's. Centuries later, Imperial Japan would finally gain a chance to get dominion over Korea following it's victory in the Russo-Japanese War that ended in 1905. From 1910 to 1945, Korea would be occupied by Imperial Japan for thirty-five years before the now defunct empire was forced to cede control after its loss by the end of World War II.

    In the restructuring that followed, the now "free" peninsula would be split in two and divided by the North and South. Differing ideologies and other factors came to a head in 1950 with the Korean War, a forceful attempt by the North to unite both sides of the peninsula. By the end of it, cities and villages lied in ruins while a very uneasy peace and stalemate was established between the two. A Demilitarized Zone, or DMZ, was established that divided the peninsula in half.

    Technically the war is still ongoing today.

    Since then, North Korea existed as an isolationist totalitarian state. South Korea, after going through decades of coups alongside periods of alternating democratic and autocratic rule, finally stabilized in the early 1990's, with the economy growing while the country modernized massively in the process.

    While tensions remained tense between the North and the South, during the Age of Monsters the peninsula was notably spared from most incursions despite a close proximity to China and Japan. South Korea was notably very accepting of Japanese refugees after the Fall of Tokyo and other incidents post-1995 despite past history. Companies like the Samsung conglomerate would also assist in the building of future AKM's in Japan with other foreign tech companies.

    This unprecedented level of security would change by the end of the twentieth century.

    -Monsterland
    (2006) by Gareth Edwards

    [-]

    9:56 AM

    June 27th, 1999

    Sokcho, South Korea


    Bordering the East Sea, the bright colored city of Sokcho was a major tourist destination near the waters it orbited. Compared to most coastal areas in the Pacific, aquatic patrols and MOD (Massive Object Detector) devices were nowhere near as common compared to those in Japan or the Mediterranean.

    None of them would be able to prevent what was coming on this misty morning.

    Miles away from the beaches and docks where crates were being unloaded, the waters began to churn and foam as a light shined under the chaotic waters like a titanic flashbang. Floating shards of light flashed brightly before dissipating just above the water.

    A large fanged maw like that of a large carnosaur rose from the water, snapping shut before the rest of the body emerged. Water and sediment slid off its displaced form.

    It was a hideous thing, familiar yet unfamiliar at the same time. The bipedal body resembled an obese, upright tyrannosaur. Purple scales ran down its head, back, and tail. The thick, meaty limb burst from the water behind it, idly swiveling from side to side.

    White stripes covered the back of its neck and tail, while its yellow scaled gut jutted out, jiggling as it stomped its way forwards, now able to walk on the seafloor below where it had emerged. Trunk like legs with four bony claws on each foot would shake the earth the moment it exited the water. Very small by comparison, two fingered claws on the left and right clenched and unclenched, not able to do much else.

    The boxy head was purple colored at the upper jaw, while the larger lower jaw was a pale yellow color like its round belly. Now able to fully stand up, it kept moving forwards, slowed by its girth. The beast reared its giant head upwards, sniffing audibly before it opened its mouth. An echoing belch sounded out from its cavernous maw, wisps of green air spilling out before it upchucked its last meal.

    The saliva coated skeleton of some three-eyed serpentine creature flew out of its jaws in pieces, splashing down into the shallow water, floating in the waves created in the titan’s wake.

    The beast was not far from land now.

    Macrosaurus
    Height: 85 Meters
    Class: V


    Rearing its head down, Macrosaurus blinked its glowing yellow eyes. It sniffed once more.

    By now it had definitely been noticed. In the docks ahead of it, shouts rang from down below. Men began running back, desperate to reach land while some jumped in the water and began swimming away, hoping desperately to not be noticed.

    Macrosaurus bulk slammed through the docks, splintering them as a large cargo ship was displaced out of its way, splitting it in two. It quickly sunk under the raging waves displaced by the kaiju.

    Sirens were ringing as it came ashore, concrete cracking with its first step into the city.

    [-]

    It had only appeared four times before, first at the cliffs of Hokkaido where it had engaged the recently awakened Battra in battle.

    Then at Accra, drawn to the area by the machinations of the first Mechagodzilla alongside other kaiju.

    The islands of the Caribbean, where it fought the water manipulating Torrentula.

    Last time anyone saw it was nearly a decade ago at Moscow, where a devastating battle with the mammoth Brutusk brought an end to the Soviet Union.

    Macrosaurus's obese form did not lend well to combat against faster creatures of a very similar size, nor did its slow attacking speed serve it well in tooth to claw battle. A "Bull in a china shop" would be the best description of its way of fighting.

    The beast wasn't very bright either, and it's main ranged attack was to belch out green gas from its stomach that acted like the spray of a massive skunk. Against smaller things it was like a cloud of acid; but in a battle against other titans with the usual mix of high durability and resistances, it was a momentary irritant and distraction depending on the opponent.

    Its belly was still visibly full for a reason.

    Despite the fact that the glutton had never truly won a one on one fight against another kaiju, that it had always retreated when wounded or stalemated, Macrosaurus was highly feared.

    Rightfully so, as a matter of fact.

    With the sheer power of hunger and some unknown factor of its constitution, the kaiju had the ability to bite down into the fabric of space and time itself, allowing it to travel randomly across the known world and possibly beyond.

    The fact that it seemed to have little if any control over where exactly it would end up after using this power was little consolation.

    It could hypothetically appear anywhere and anytime in the world.

    In an era where monsters can be seen and heard coming miles away from the sea and air,, this made Macrosaurus's potential to cause harm nearly unrivaled, no matter how little control it seemed had over its own power, or over which location it would end up next as it was flung forwards in time and space. The science behind it were still being studied.

    Even among other bizarre titans, Macrosaurus was a reality warper in a class of its own.

    [-]

    9:45 PM

    June 27th, 1999

    Gangwon Province, South Korea


    Macrosaurus had cut a path as big as its appetite across the west. Fields and trees lay trampled under massive saurian footprints, and as usual crushed bits were all that remained of most of the local military forces.

    Cattle farms at Hongcheon County were its main initial target. Livestock were gulped down by the dozens before it turned its attention to the fleeing crowds of humans.

    The city of Chuncheon was a warzone, smoke drifting in the air while dust drifted off the dozen or so crumbling buildings. Some had bites taken out of them, leaving gaping holes in the buildings that hadn't fallen. Very few were undamaged; in fact, those that hadn't been hit physically or bitten were charred, with one or two outright in flames. They would topple down eventually.

    The majority of the population had advance notice of the obese monster's arrival when it stepped out of the water that morning, and by now they had either left or been stranded in the city in the ongoing evacuation effort when it had reached the outskirts.

    Most of those still in the city were those who had been ironically running away from Macrosaurus after it had first emerged from the water.

    With dust and ash drawn up by the fighting and massive footprint craters on all the streets, the next notable sight in the war-torn city was the giant splashes of red blood.

    Some of it was on the streets, cars and other objects sizzling under it. Large patches of the spilled blood steamed and sizzled across rooftops in a small area downtown.

    This blood did not belong to any men.

    Much of this was lost on a large group of refuges from the initial incursion by Macrosaurus.

    Having ran into an underground shelter made in case of disaster, manmade or otherwise, the entrance had been blocked by a fallen pile of debris consisting of stone and steel.

    With the sounds of titanic roars and stomps across the city alongside the occasional echo of an explosion and a falling structure throughout the incursion, they only had each other as the chaos continued.

    News choppers filmed from a cautious distance away while green camouflaged military helicopters flew above the smoke, turrets cautiously aiming downwards at the creature now stomping its way towards the outskirts.

    A long saurian tail swung from side to side as the behemoth clenched his scaly fists before turning his eyes downwards and reaching forwards with a claw.

    [-]

    The way out was blocked; stone with rebar jutted out of it alongside a covering of glass falling between the cracked. A roof and parts of the building it covered had fallen over the entrance during the dash to safety.

    A pair of brown furred cows, ones who miraculously managed to escape and run when Macrosaurus attacked, were now standing around and calling out in fear or hunger, no one knew. It was hard to see in the dark. At least the animals took their own spot away from the people, of which there were less than a dozen. It could have been worse, really.

    This was a small comfort to the people in it. Some leaned down onto the cold grey walls in the near complete darkness. A few had thought to bring flashlights, at least four or five.

    One bald businessman in a grey suit sat down with a lantern in front of him. A stockbroker, Lee Hyun-ho wished he could have been anywhere else today. He was holding the newest type of mobile phone in the country, grimacing as he tried and failed to make a connection. Hyun-ho looked up from the phone after some fruitless effort to the people around him. They had been there for nearly an hour, maybe more. Some holes in the debris allowed moonlight and air to stream in, so if there was one blessing it was that they would not suffocate. Hopefully.

    A group of five people, students by the look of them, were standing around and whispering to one another. Probably about the whole thing; he wasn't much for large groups.

    A police officer leaned up against a wall, biting down on a wallet as his companion, a fellow officer with apparent medical training worked on setting a bandaged leg that was jutting out awkwardly.

    Another group of students sat down and twiddled their thumbs as they all tried to ignore the very loud noises coming from outside.

    The man took a look at the final person in the unlikely "Group". She was small woman, didn't even look to be out of High School at that. She had dark unkempt hair that went to her shoulders. She wore a white apron that went down to her legs. Dirt smudged it, with some of it on her visible arms. She sat, legs to her chest.

    The look on her face was that of someone who had stared down a thousand yards and lived.

    Must have been in one of those farms. Saw the thing up close. Lived. Ran all the way here.

    He shook his head as he awkwardly looked away from her. He wasn't really good with younger people. He figured the others, still absorbed in their own troubles, would eventually pick up the slack.

    Not that there would be much else to do-

    The roaring from outside suddenly cut out with a noise like that of thunder. This got the attention of everyone in the trapped shelter.

    The young woman kept on staring ahead, as if dead to the world.

    The sound of titanic feet stepping onto the ground came back. Not as fast or manic as before. This was slower, more gradual, as if the thing on the ground was taking its time. Moment by moment, it got nearer.

    Then one of the students spoke up. "Is... does it know we're here?"

    There was a pause before it took roughly four seconds for the idea to take root. Then one of the students started screaming in fear, and so did half of the rest. The other half began shouting at them to shut up in case they really did bring it here, while one or two simply covered their ears to wait it out.

    The cows began flicking their tails back in forth in agitation as a foul smell emanated from them. It was bound to happen sooner or later.

    The girl barely fidgeted.

    Then the footsteps came to a stop in front of them. Too engrossed in their sudden conflict, they became aware once more the ground shook for a moment.

    It was as if a massive weight had attached itself to the fallen roof covering the entrance before it was suddenly wrenched away, cool winds and moonlight pouring in.

    For a moment the screams started anew as if they expected the thing that had just found the shelter to reach in-

    Nothing happened for a few precious seconds.

    But the large presence outside could be felt in the air around them.

    At that point the vacant stared girl slowly looked up.

    They were "free", but few wanted to exit and confront whatever was out there.

    After all, they had good reason not to.

    Surprisingly, it was the girl that was the first to stand up, shakily but soon risen as she walked to the entrance. It was as if she had a galvanizing effect; although he hesitated, the bald man began to slowly walk after her. Then another, and another.

    They were now exposed to the outside once more. The night was dark and the moon was high. Crackling embers wafted away from smoke, some of it falling down in the shelter.

    That was not their biggest concern at the moment.

    Through the fading smoke, a massive dark foot covered in grey scales was visible. Moving their shaking gazes upward, they saw a large four fingered grey claw holding onto the cracking piece of debris as it squeezed down onto the material, crunched dust slipping between the fingers.

    From above, a dark saurian head slowly turned its view downwards.


    Under the stars and smoke, it was not the cold yellow eyes of Macrosaurus that surveyed them, but a flame colored gaze known across the world.

    [-]

    January 24th, 2014

    Korean Border Defense Line [Formerly the Demilitarized zone], South Korea


    Much had changed since 1999, and all of Korea had changed with it. The recent events in 2012 were no exception.

    The southern side of the border by the old DMZ had been massively reinforced. Maser turrets and missile launchers were placed around it, some outright replacing fences. Soldiers garbed in sealed grey armor like that of the KDF and CKR patrolled the gate towers and electric fence lines while teams of engineers checked the turrets.

    On the other side was the wasteland that encompassed the former country of North Korea. It was eerily silent across old fields and abandoned buildings, across leafless trees and forests. Cities like Pyongang were in rubble, while other parts in the inner regions of the North had the very air visibly distorted, with radioactive smoke still burning in the detonated nuclear missile silo at Punngye-ri.

    It was like Tokyo on a statewide scale. North Korea had fallen as a country, but the security of the border was nevertheless far more important than ever for good reasons across those 160 miles, even with ANEB deployment hundreds of miles ahead of the area; the bacteria nevertheless would burn out if "overfed", necessitating repeated deployment.

    And where there was nuclear disaster, you were bound to find monsters. The defense line was there for a good reason.

    [-]

    9:59 AM

    Defense Line #24


    At least that is what First Lieutenant Kim Kang Rok had been told.

    The only ones his unit knew about were the few dozen seven to twelve foot long scorpions and beetles that would come out across plains and hills every few months; ones that were easily shot down with .50 Cals or plasma vapor depending on the risk level of a patrol's assigned areas. The only way he knew about this was when people bragged about it at the mess hall, or at briefings of the incursions which would show one or two bugs of unusual size scuttling down a hill and getting mowed down in a hail of lead and fire in short order. There was also pictures of the dead things with occasional vid footage of the shots that took em out. Hard to feel afraid of them after that. Still, Kang Rok hadn't had to fire a single bullet since he applied for the position three months ago.

    In some sections there were jokes about them being a "Night's Watch."

    He didn't get it.

    Still, there were rumors so far of what lurked in the deeper regions. Of far bigger scorpions, some the size of houses. Of blob creatures made of bone and burned flesh. And of musclebound shaggy things walking around on two legs that were once humans.

    The name "Gargantua" was tossed around for the latter.

    With only the occasional rumor of Spec Ops teams going to cleansed areas, much of this was speculation. It was likely that the governments didn't want people to panic over whether or not there could be a giant nest of new monsters where only a few relatively small megafauna had been spotted since then.

    Kang Rok thought this over idly as a way to pass the time at his post this morning. He wore gray and silver-plated KDF styled armor, with a pair of red googles that could detect certain forms of radiation and heat. Over his head he wore a camouflaged combat helmet, and under it and the goggles, the 23-year-old had a youthful face that made him look more than a few years younger than he actually was. Leaning back on a chair at the wooden watchtower bordered by electrical wiring, he held a scoped M60 machinegun straight from the US storehouses, ones given by the truckload to South Korea after the fall of its northern counterpart. Scratch marks across the barrel alongside the aged "feel" of thing made him wonder if it had seen service all the way back to Vietnam.

    It was mounted by a bipod onto the cover of the wall, which helped with the recoil alongside his armored gauntlets.

    Good thing he had a fan on behind him; it was going to get really hot soon even though not much happened on this specific side. This part of the border was considered a low risk zone with its flat plains and the brown and green grass that would allow them to see something coming quickly, and with its notable lack of radioactive fallout compared to the other areas irradiated by the nuclear explosions from that had been seen as far as the original DMZ, it was a rather simple posting. Not too exciting, but not to dangerous. At least the pay was good.

    Taking a moment to overlook the flat plain, he turned took this chance to stand up and stretch is legs. There was a second watchtower twenty meters away with a crew of its own in front of the electrical steel gate, while men and women wearing armor walked down their set routes, assault rifles with explosive ammunition in hand. The sound of a page turning made him turn to see a fellow lieutenant, one he'd been working alongside since his watch began.

    The man had been so quiet that Kang Rok had plain forgot about him for the last few minutes. Song Jung-jin wore the same armor as him, but with the symbol of a grenade on his shoulder pieces to make it clear that his specialty was explosive weapons Unlike the others, he took his helmet off and set it near his folded chair. "It's not like the monsters are going to pick up rifles and shoot us." he had said.

    Their superiors either didn't notice or care. Jung-jin was a few years older then him but was nevertheless a childhood friend. Being posted to the same unit was a pleasant surprise. A six round cylindrical tan grenade launcher with a scope was by his chair as he lazily flipped through a small white book, expression hidden under his goggles.

    He noted the translated title, one he'd seen before: The Official Timeline of the Age of Monsters.

    They had hours. A conversation wouldn't hurt if it passed the time. Seeing the book title gave him an idea. Turning to address Jung-jin, he began with, "Think they'll mention us in the next update of your book?" Jung-jin paused, slowly lifting the book down before he shrugged. "I doubt it. Most of this-" he gestured to the reinforced border they worked at, "-Got folded in with the general aftermath in most of the reports. The only monsters we deal with are barely bigger then cars. If there really are bigger ones out there, the government wouldn't say yet unless they were absolutely sure there wouldn't be a major panic." Despite his reservations, Kang Rok found himself agreeing.

    "Yeah, wouldn't want anyone freaking out over this place becoming a second Monster Island. Still, we got a lot of new toys to deal with anything that might come out." Jung-jin gave an accommodating "Hmm." before taking over the conversation.

    "Unless there was a really big attack or scientific discovery, our work here won't be mentioned much in kaiju matters. Probably a paragraph or two in the next edition now that I think about it. Hell, the Survival Party in China got hit by some of the radiation even when most of it went downwind, but they ain't talking to anyone outside of their sphere." Jung-jin smirked slightly when he said this, and Kang Rok began to realize that he had inadvertently gotten the man political.

    At least the end of their shift wouldn't get too boring.

    Kang Rok tried to change the subject. "You think there's been any expeditions into those areas yet?'' Jung-jin paused in thought. "Probably. I doubt our bosses would say it out loud. Confidentiality and all that, you know how the game is." Kang Rok sat down in thought, idly stroking the barrel of his mounted weapon. He thought of the older man in charge of their unit at this post, General Lee Hyuk-jin. The man was tough but fair. Would he be involved in something like this?

    Then they heard a sputtering metallic sound. Both men turned their gaze back to the plains, expecting the usual adversaries.

    They paused, weapons gripped but slightly relaxed when they saw it. It was a heavily armored silver jeep, or at least was one. Vapor fizzled out of the advanced plasma engine visible through a hole in the middle of the hood.

    The top of the vehicle had been torn off, revealing the driver to be wearing a black, bulkier version of their current armor. A grey helmet with a red face concealing visor was over the driver's head, obscuring their identity. A long green tube-like object that they recognized as rocket launcher was in the seat next to the driver. The metal was warped, and they could see-was that blood?-around the top of it. There was something in the backseat they saw as it passed closer, some kind of metal case.

    But what caught their attention first was the symbol on the driver's breastplate and shoulders: A golden eagle.

    "Oh shit! That's one of the Special Forces!" Kang Rok all but shouted, trying to keep his surprise down. Of course this happened right when they were talking about secret expeditions, must have jinxed themselves-

    He got another surprise when the vehicle got closer. Dragged by a hooked chain attacked to the bumper at the back of the damaged jeep was the head of some beaked, burned creature. The head looked to be the size of one of the tire's, maybe slightly bigger.

    Well, there were definitely bigger things beyond the wall after all.

    "W-what should we do?" Kang Rok asked the older man as other soldiers began to turn their heads in the direction of the jeep, some cautiously lifting their weapons. Jung-jin shrugged and pointed forwards as the jeep came to a stop near the front gate, by the driver's will or not.

    He could see the black windowed station in front of the gate. Assuming the driver's headset still worked, the two guys at the station (He forgot their names) would communicate with the driver by their helmet comms. What happened next would determine whether or not they would be allowed back inside the area.

    Jung-jin kept his voice low as he whispered out a hypothesis. "Something obviously went wrong. If this really is the remnant of an expedition, they might have had a path to get back in without grunts like us seeing it, or they would only come in when agents in the know were on duty."

    That was...surprisingly logical to Kang Rok's mind.

    They both had a feeling what they just saw would not be declassified for a long, long time.

    [-]

    Defense Line Station #24. Transcription #1366


    "Halt! Identify yourself-"

    "This is Captain Moon Min-ah of the 1st Special Forces Brigade. Situation Code 122414."

    "….Understood. I will contact the General immediately."


    [-]

    10:30 AM

    SF-Base #20, South of the Defense Line


    General Lee Hyuk-jin walked down the corridors of the base, white bricks on the walls on either side of him. The short-haired old man wore a black overcoat over a suit and tie, with silver stars on both shoulders and half a dozen small medals pinned to the left of the official looking outfit that was commonly worn by high ranking military officials. The older man's face was grim, stress lines and a few small scars across the weathered surface near his green eyes. Nevertheless, he held his hands behind his back in a composed manner as he considered the report he had recently gotten from one of the calmer sections of the DMZ-defense line, he mentally corrected himself.

    Old habits died hard.

    Captain Moon Min-ah had recently returned without the rest of the squad that had been sent into the former North Korea. He could probably guess what had happened.

    After all, he sent the squad on the mission in the first place.

    Their objective had been to reach an old Cold War era building that had been built miles from the DMZ, but not close enough to cause any major border disputes. Abandoned with the rest of the forsaken North, this changed when a recon UAV noted the presence of several individuals in unmarked silver hazmat suits walking into it, a full year after the fall of the North.

    Hyuk-jin didn't hesitate to get a chance to draft an operation to investigate with an experienced four man squad. If they happened to discover any intel or state secrets belonging to the North Korean government while down there, it would be no problem if said information "fell" into their hands.

    For Hyuk-jin, it was a chance to learn the secrets of one of their longest running enemies under the guise of investigation.

    It was supposed to be quick and clean.

    He tugged on his collar as he turned around another corner, trying to avoid showing his anxiety. He thought the mission would go relatively well, due to being not far from the safer areas of the Defense Line. That no one would die.

    Now he would likely be in front of a committee if the information leaked, with his job likely to follow depending on how much shit hit the fan. Hopefully the soldiers at the border would understand the need for discretion when he contacted them.

    He wondered if the leaders of the JSDF felt the same way in 1954.

    He needed to take his mind of this anxiety.

    Hearing the calming sounds of guns going off at the firing range, he then decided to slow down in his stride, going over facts in his head. It was a favored calming strategy for himself.

    His thoughts turned to the only apparent survivor of his official (but not to the public) expedition, Captain Moon Min-ah. He had read the elite soldier's file extensively.

    [-]

    Born in in 1983, Min-ah was sixteen years old when Macrosaurus attacked the cattle ranch where the future soldier had been working part-time during the beast's incursion into the Gangwon Province in 1999.

    Tore the roof right off the place, according to the data.

    Min-ah had not only survived but reached the city of Chuncheon shortly before it arrived, and was present in an emergency shelter during the battle between Macrosaurus and the recently arrived Godzilla.

    Two years later in 2001, Min-ah immediately joined the military after graduating from high school. Since then, Min-ah's history left it clear why the soldier was now in Special Operations. Min-ah did a voluntary stint in Afghanistan in a joint Kaiju Defense Force operation from 2002-2004, battling Biollante mutations in the mountains. Min-ah also engaged in counter-terrorism operations in Somalia from 2006-2007 after completing training and induction into the 1st Special Forces Brigade.

    Since then, Min-ah was involved in a smattering of other conflicts, usually in urban combat across the next three years. Some of the records of that time were sealed or redacted, even with Hyuk-jin's influence as a General. Yet, he had been content at the time with what he knew so far.

    Between time in training, the most recent recorded major battle on Min-ah's record was at the defense of Incheon during the Breacher Outbreak back in 2011 as a close range operations expert.

    Since then Min-ah had been assigned to the DMZ and the defense line it later became, and had at least three kills on record involving small scale megafauna. Having someone like that guard the border when there was so much more they could do with their skills seemed like a waste of talent to Hyuk-jin.

    Perhaps that was why he took such an interest in the first place when he chose and inducted Min-ah and other urban combat experts into a mission that involved going into that abandoned building and the bunker below it.

    [-]

    Reciting the information mentally, Hyuk-jin calmed down some as he reached the door to the decontamination room. Given how she had miraculously incurred almost no radiation damage thanks to her heavy armor according to the report, the soldier was only going to go through a very brief check-up just in case.

    He had half an hour before he figured it was time to leave the office, wanting to file all the reports he could before conducting what may be his last one on one debriefing.

    "Sir," a slightly gruff but familiar voice sounded from behind him, "I am ready to debrief."

    Resisting the urge to flinch over someone sneaking up on him when he least expected such a thing, Hyuk-jin turned just as the woman behind him finished saluting with a calloused hand.


    Moon Min-ah was dressed in a pair of green camouflaged army fatigues as usual for off duty personnel who weren't immediately expected to be deployed in combat. The blue-eyed woman's short dark hair was pulled behind her head in a simple but slightly spiky knot, while two straight black bangs framed her face. Two small scars ran across her nose horizontally, while a larger straight cut went down her left cheek vertically. They were faded, but still visible close up where she stood five or four feet away from him.


    The Spec Ops Captain's gaze was distant but observant at the same time, and at this range Hyuk-jin could almost feel a physical sharpness from her stare.

    He was glad that his years of disciplined service managed to allow him to keep his stoic form.

    He had only seen and talked to her a few times beforehand, all relating to the mission he gave to her. She had no major discipline referrals or incidents. In a way, she was an ideal soldier.

    There was just something about her. For lack of a better term, he just felt...cold in her presence.

    It could have been the machine-like attitude or just her near supernatural calm in general, he wasn't sure.

    She just unnerved him, for lack of a better term.

    It could have just been his problem alone, but Hyuk-jin wasn't the type to freely share his personal paranoia's with others for comparison.

    His mind whirled through this before he responded as quickly as possible. "At ease, Captain. Follow me." he said with a nod. She responded with a slight nod of her own before stepping place behind him. This was good for the General, as he was able to wipe the sweat from his brow without her seeming to notice or care much. Rounding a corridor, Hyuk-jin opened a nondescript white door that blended in with the concrete walls.

    Inside was a gleaming steel table shaped like a rectangle. Eight chairs lay at the back of the room for when they would be needed.

    [-]

    11:35 AM

    Briefing Room #06


    As the door closed in front of him while Min-ah exited the room, Hyuk-jin slouched down in his chair now that no one could see him.

    He started by getting what he knew would be the hardest part out of the way.

    The rest of the squad wasn't with her when she came in. He knew the likeliest answer, but some deep part of him hoped that maybe they were trapped or just got separated. That something could still be done despite how them being alive was very unlikely.

    Squad status, Captain? he had asked.

    All deceased, sir. was the reply in the same tone as usual. Admitably she and the handpicked squad had only trained together a few weeks after being chosen, but the same unnerving feeling he got from her heightened for a moment.

    From then on she told him the rest of what he would soon be reporting to his inner circle.

    The squad had left under the cover of midnight through a gate in the defense line, with soldiers loyal to him that knew very little about what was happening yet who knew discretion making sure no one would see them.

    Three hours later, they reached their destination and entered the building after confirming that nothing was outside of it. Empty rooms lined the hallways with nothing of value; they were likely made by the Northern government to give the illusion of space, that it was something else.

    Not the first time the North did it. The fake town of Peace Village was a prime example.

    After finding a bunker entrance, they went down it with thermal detecting software in their helmets. There was only one room in the small bunker, and from what she described he guessed it was some kind of laboratory. One that had recently been abandoned.

    Wires stuck out of walls were computers or cameras had been pulled out. Whiteboards had been scrubbed clean. Dusty footprints lined the ground, while open closets and tables were totally bare of the usual equipment one would expect to see. Whoever the people in the hazmat suits were, they had taken everything and were likely long gone.

    Well, almost everything.

    Just as they were about to leave, Min-ah spotted a folder that had slipped under a table with the exception of a folder. It was twenty or so pages long from her current estimate.

    The words Confidential might as well have been written all over it. One file was better then leaving completely empty handed.

    After leaving the building with it still dark out, they had reached their vehicle. It started to rain as they were travelling down a path through a section of woodland when jeep was attacked by an airborne hostile. It struck from the side with enough force to send the vehicle rolling down the hill while smashing the windshield out.

    It came back just as Min-ah had gotten out of the vehicle.

    That was when she had seen it.

    The attacker was a large predatory bird with gold and black feathers, one a meter or so bigger than the jeep.


    An Ookondoru, Hyuk-jin had guessed. It wasn't nearly as big as the ones from Letchi Island, so it was clearly a young specimen that had to have been spawned beyond the border.

    From there, he got a good description of what had happened to the rest of the squad, all of them fellow captains.

    Choi Hee-bong was thrown out the front window from the crash. The giant condor grabbed him in its talons and slid its claws under his MK III combat armor with savage ease. Blood poured down out of his torso like yolk from an egg before the condor dropped him after getting hit with incendiary rounds, but it was too late for the official team leader.

    When they grounded it by shooting at the wings less than half a minute later, it lashed out, half on fire as it grabbed Yoon Hyun-seo by the head. His armored helm held out after getting smashed into the front of the jeep. The same could not be said for his twisted neck.

    Yoon Shin-hye
    took the mutant's left eye out a moment later before it lashed out with a talon tent right through her chest.

    It took its claw out of her and turned just in time for Min-ah to shoot it in the neck dead center with a rocket propelled grenade. The force ripped it's head off, finally killing it. By then it took her two additional hours to make the jeep work again for at least half an hour, long enough for her to get back to base.

    She also took the time to bury the bodies and mark their location in the small woodlands. This was so they could be found later and to give the bodies at least a temporary protection from animals. It could have also been out of respect, but if it was, she didn't say it.

    From then on, she reached the border with the jeep on its last legs.


    He paused, sitting back as he digested this information. At least the intel had gotten back, and with only a relative dozen having seen her, cover up wouldn't be too hard.

    The bodies would have to be retrieved and given proper funerals. Their families would have to be informed with an acceptable explanation of the deaths. He would go door to door himself if he had to.

    Min-ah sat with the same stoic composure as usual. Hyuk-jin decided to get to the start of the last of it.

    "Did you read the files?"

    "I did not, sir."

    Hyuk-jin nodded. "I will take care of it. Consider the responsibility off your hands." he had said, pointing to where the folder had been placed in the middle of the table.


    He paused again as he considered what would happen next. He was not sure if Min-ah was taking the deaths of her comrades well or if she was simply good at holding it all in. Regardless, as per usual after missions like these there would be a rest period of a week or longer for operators depending on physical and mental trauma occurred. Given her hardiness, he expected her to be qualified to go back in the field before the end of the month. A mandatory evaluation would probably be coming up regardless.

    Bringing back the head of a young Ookondoru to prove that the radioactive North was still dangerous was one thing. But dragging it on a chain like some kind of trophy was another.

    So far, the whole debrief was almost done except for one last thing, something he had planned on mentioning to the whole squad.

    Monarch.

    The organization had contacted his government a month ago for a planned expedition of theirs. Monarch wanted to know if they could "borrow" an experienced operative or two for a mission, an expedition to a newly discovered habitat.

    He didn't know the exact nature of the expedition or what Monarch was offering to in return if it was using any incentives beyond the good name of scientific advancement. He was flat out told that the whole thing would be on a need to know basis by his government.

    He understood that perfectly. After all, he had often given similar orders to his own soldiers.

    But he did get to see the four specific individuals they had chosen.

    Putting them together in a squad seemed like a good idea to him when he was preparing the expedition beyond the border around the start of January. After all, working together on one mission would show him what they could do in the field and would give them an opportunity to get used to working together, assuming that they all accepted the same mission from Monarch when it came.

    Of course, back then he'd been expecting to still have a whole squad by the end of the month.

    He didn't know if Monarch was aware of his own little expedition on the side or how he'd used it to "test" the operatives they wanted.

    "Captain, have you heard of the Monarch organization? That Megazoology research group?"

    "I have, sir."

    He continued. "They contacted us a while ago. They wanted to know if they could use experienced operatives in an operation they are planning. Specifically, you were one of those chosen for potential induction into it." He paused. Min-ah didn't show any significant emotional response. "I understand sir." was the response he got.

    He tried to remember the lines he'd wanted to recite before opening his mouth once more. "The mission is an expedition of sorts. They wish to have you in a security enforcement role."

    Min-ah gave a brief nod. Hyuk-jin then decided to just get it done. "Monarch became interested in hiring you and three other specialists back in December. Unfortunately, the other three operatives were the ones on the mission you came back from. My condolences."

    Min-ah titled her head very briefly. "That's unfortunate." Hyuk-jin nodded, for once fully agreeing with her. "Monarch may still be interested in hiring you if you agree. A representative will be allowed into base for the purposes of communicating with you." He paused and quickly amended that. "Once again, this is all strictly voluntary. I understand that if you want time off, I can give you a break until you need to rest after what happened last night."

    "I will be sufficiently rested by Friday." was her next reply, one that seemed both like a simple statement and a honest explanation. Hyuk-jin found himself believing her as he replied. "I myself don't know the exact date yet. But it will likely be after the next week."

    Time to wrap it up. "Captain, for your efforts I believe you deserved to know some context before you get approached by a man in a suit in the coming days."

    "Acknowledged, sir."

    Hyuk-jin paused. There were other things he wanted to say, but he had given out all that seemed relevant.

    "You are dismissed, Captain. Thank you for your efforts."

    "Understood, General." And then with a stiff bow, she was out the door.


    Taking another breath, Hyuk-jin looked down to the paper and prepared to read it.

    [-]

    Hyuk-jink skimmed through the papers in the folder. He'd read it in full later with other high-level officials soon enough.

    The sentences inside were written in multiple languages, of which he recognized as Malaysian or something similar. A few sentences were in what looked to be a European language, he'd need help with a translator on that one. He didn't know what these files really supposed to be about. Some paragraphs were spaced professionally like in an essay, while others went down the entire page without any space between them.

    He paused as one page was devoid of language, instead displaying an admitably well-detailed sketch of a bulky reptilian creature with a slight resemblance to an upright bull.

    He recognized it at once.

    Bulgasari. The kaiju that singlehandedly brought down the North Korean government. After detonating the nuclear silo at Punggye-ri, it was suspected that the beast fell into the ensuing crater owing to the fact that no remains or body had been seen.

    He had little doubt that the world would see it again someday.

    He had little sympathy for the people in charge of the state it had destroyed, but the evacuation of the innocent civilians who weren't dead or soon to be dead from the radiation was still a trying priority.

    He then thought back to the creature, the Ookondoru, that Min-ah and her squad had killed at great cost. He was glad no one was around to see the look on his face when he became aware of a new possibility.

    The Cult of G! They were suspected of releasing a flock on the IS Academy a year ago. Could they have been responsible for Bul-

    He braced himself, taking deep breaths as a few beads of sweat began to shine under the room light. An Ookondoru being near the location of the mysterious folder like a guard dog was a hell of a coincidence, but he didn't want to jump to conclusions just yet. He still didn't know the identities or intentions of the mysterious hazmat crew.

    Nevertheless, he'd still be voicing his theories to his superiors.

    Taking another moment to compose his mind. He let out a deep breath and went back to reading the rest of it.

    Near the end, the last five papers of it was in a language he did not recognize, but he had his suspicions.

    Perhaps he could give Monarch a call. After all, they practically gave him their number.

    At that, he remembered their agreement as he stood up, ready to go marching down to his office to make a secure call. If anyone could understand ancient dead languages, it was them.

    He then took his thoughts back to Min-ah.

    As he locked the door to his office behind him, he was also thinking about whether or not she would take Monarch's offer, assuming that they would still make it with the planned squad being down three members.

    Given her past history with the Macrosaurus incursion in particular, he was fully expecting to be working on Moon Min-ah's temporary transfer to the mysterious expedition within the next month.

    [-]

    1:00 PM

    February 7th, 2014

    Firing Range, SF Base #20


    Bullets clanged on the ground of the room. Standing in front of a waist high barrier, Moon Min-ah slowly pointed the American carbine in her hands downwards, flicking on the safety as smoke trailed from the barrel. The range in front of her had human shaped targets twenty feet straight away. A few closer ones, ten to fifteen feet in this part of the firing range.

    She felt satisfaction as she saw the holes in each of the black silhouettes. Not a single bullet had hit the white space around her.

    Keeping up one’s skills was a good reason for this daily ritual.

    Venting out stress and other negative things was another.

    Though she did not interact with them much beyond training over the weeks leading up to the mission, she still found herself drifting back to the squad.

    Of Choi's jokes about the government or whatever had caught his interest.

    Of the red-headed Yoon siblings and their debates about that one American show with swords and dragons where people died a lot.

    She'd heard over breakfast about people going beyond the border again a few days ago. Maybe they'd found the bodies by now, assuming a mutant beetle or tiger hadn't pulled the plates off and eaten the meat.

    ...Maybe she could go to the funeral if there was enough left to bury. She should owe them that at least.

    Luckily, stress relief was not hard to find at the base that had been her home for the last three years.

    Her musing was interrupted when the door slid open. She turned her head an inch, seeing the visage of a black-haired man wearing a buttoned white shirt under a thin black coat. She saw the tag hanging off a black lanyard over his chest and at once knew what was going on.

    "Excuse me," he began, his grasp of the Korean language a bit rough around the edges, "Might you be Captain Moon Min-ah?"

    She gave a slight nod. "I am. You must be with Monarch."

    The man gave a nod of his own. "Pleased to meet you. The name is Ishiro Serizawa."

    He held a handout. "May I please borrow a few moments of your time?"

    [-]

    1:36 PM


    When Lee Hyuk-jin's report came in of the loss of three potential expedition members in what was allegedly a completely unrelated incident, Serizawa forced his disappointment for the smallest of moments and tried not to show if on his face. Unfortunate, but for him one surviving was better then none.

    It was always good to look at the positive side of things. Life could be cruel and kind at the same time.

    He had some interest in her ever since he read her profile. She had a prior encounter involving megafauna before she began training and had survived similar incursions over her career. He had some suspicions but kept them to himself.

    She had a stoic look about her, unfazed as she let him lead their conversation on the expedition.

    Then the topic of Godzilla came up. The second he mentioned the nuclear saurian, he saw it.

    Her eyes narrowed a moment, and her jaw unclenched for a second. He saw a finger twitch.

    When he got to the part about the area being Godzilla's home, She leaned forward with such swiftness that caused him to focus on every hit of professionalism he had to not flinch in surprise.

    "Where do I sign up?"

    She said that verbatim.

    He showed her the papers, offered lists of guides to diving and underwater combat should it come to that. It was agreed that she would do best as a security officer dedicated to keeping the peace in a place close to a trench filled with radiation and other unknown dangers.

    A minute later, he left feeling as satisfied as the time he recruited all four of Saitama's MON squad. He swore she was about to break out into skipping as she exited the door before him.

    With the quick meeting over, he was now off to contact her superiors to discuss her transfer.

    He was proud to have another skilled member on the team. Wanting to join because Godzilla was involved made or broke someone's decision. Already, six potential recruits had chosen not to when the true scale of the expedition came up.

    She looked ready to not just race to the airport when the time came, but to jump straight into the waters above Nautilus One itself, all from a look at her eyes.

    He was a bit familiar with it.

    That hint of barely contained excitement when he mentioned the apex kaiju reminded him of himself on some level, of the day when he first saw a true kaiju in the flesh.

    Looking at her background, he could guess why.

    [-]

    2:30 PM

    February 15th, 2014

    Seoul, South Korea


    And that was that.

    Walking down one of many sidewalks at the capital, Min-ah blocked out the sounds of traffic nearby as she neared a brown brick apartment building. Instead of fatigues or armor, she wore grey hooded jacket and sweatpants of the same color. Her hair was down and had grown an inch or two, idly moving in the wind as she held her hands in her pockets in the cold air.

    Her transfer had gone smoother than she expected through the iron gears of bureaucracy. Monarch agents would pick her up in June and then she'd be on her way. A list of places to train were mailed to her.

    Meanwhile, General Lee Hyuk-jin had suddenly transferred to a new position away from the base overnight. She wasn't sure what that was about, having been testing out a pair of new submachine guns at the range when the drama went down, though sometimes at the mess hall she would overhear whispered conversations about how the general seemed a bit nervous as he left the office with a black briefcase in each hand.

    It was no longer her concern, not anymore by this time.

    Walking up a pair of stairs to a wooden door, she pulled a key out of her pockets and pushed it in, opening it.

    She walked into the building, flipping on a light switch as she took in the sights of the apartment she hadn't been to in years, dust particles dropping like snowfall near a window

    It was strange, getting used to living like a civilian once more, even if it was only for about four months.

    Four months until she got a chance, however small, to answer a question years in the making.

    Feeling the urge to run right to her old, folded up bed, she marched over to it after shutting the door. Reaching under it, she pulled out a hard, coverless brown book.

    She hadn't touched it since the day she left for Somalia, even longer then when she had first left the apartment.

    But now she had some feelings that she needed to put into words. Opening a nearby drawer, she pulled a blue pen from it's depths and started writing in the journals blank white pages.

    [-]

    9:54 PM

    June 27th, 1999

    Chuncheon, South Korea

    EM-Shelter 006


    The presence of Godzilla was terrifying and awe-inspiring.

    For all of those who usually went into utter panic, that made it all the more noticeable when the sight of him up close resulted in total silence.

    This was one of the latter moments.

    From the view barely visible behind Godzilla, particles of light wildly flew around each other like shards of falling glass before dissipating. The street behind him alongside four small buildings had cracks and tears in them, smoke wafting off from the otherworldly damage.

    By the time Godzilla arrived, Macrosaurus had eaten its way to one of the biggest cities in the province.

    Godzilla's right claw dropped the debris that had been blocking the way. The material fell with a crunch and a clang to the ground below, stirring up dust and displacing rubble for a moment.

    His left claw was stained with a dark red fluid.

    The blood of another giant.

    It took nearly getting its intestines ripped out to make Macrosaurus flee.

    Since that night, there were no new sightings of Macrosaurus during the fifteen years that followed.


    Godzilla's head was still tilted down, clearly having seen the small humans. His form was still. There were murmurs of fear as one of the student groups turned around, almost ready to run back into the shelter.

    Godzilla let out a short yet loud breath, and blue fumes whiffed out from between his teeth before dissipating as he turned his gaze away, slowly shifting his body to the right as he began to head away from the rubble and destruction around them.

    Even though he was twenty to thirty meters away after stepping back when he first picked up the debris blocking the exit, the ground still shook with each step he made, dirt and dust billowing up between his toes. Everyone's vision shook as they struggled to keep balance.

    The girl fell to her knees, eyes wide as she spoke for the first time of the night.


    "I think he just saved us." Moon Min-ah said, the teenager's voice weary from the long night, yet amazed at the same time.


    From then on, I was never the same.

    As they watched in stunned silence, Godzilla continued moving forwards with his back to them as he headed out of the city. His dorsal plates and scales had a glow to them under the moonlight as he exited the city.

    It would be a long walk back to sea.

    Helicopters watched from a cautious distance.

    Min-ah was still on her knees when the sound of marching feet came from around the corner. "Captain! We found more survivors!"

    Min-ah's gaze remained on Godzilla when the rest of the group turned to see men wearing camouflaged armor and helmets approaching them, assault rifles cautiously lowered.

    When we were found and tested by the military, we collectively had less bioradiation on us then what you would find in a single collection x-ray.

    That meant he was regulating his internal radioactive levels when he lifted the debris.

    That action wasn't random. He was being careful.

    Once things cooled down, I knew I couldn't let myself be a part of the farming business anymore when I grew up, not when I knew what was really out there.

    Shortly after I graduated, I was on my way to boot camp.


    [-]

    I did not simply accept this assignment out of duty. Or in the name of science.

    I'm doing this because I need to know why he thought to take the time to save a few humans out of many that night.






    Why did Godzilla, a killer of hundreds of thousands, choose to save me?
     
    ATP likes this.
  9. Extras: Monster War Stories
    ScriptGenius12

    ScriptGenius12 Know what you're doing yet?

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    "Hey! Bina, I got one of those comics ya love so much. But if you want one, it's gonna cost ya!

    -Doppel, Infiltrator Sergeant in the 1st Monster Ops Brigade


    [-]

    "The sequel to the hit miniseries Monster War Stories is here, taking readers to real battles and events across history! Whether you like titanic battles or moments of character drama, Volume 2 has you covered!

    With some of the most well-regarded comic book authors and artists from around the world working together, prepare for five issues of melee and mayhem!"

    -Preview for IDW Publishing's Monster War Stories Vol. 2 released on 3/6/14. Issue #1 was released the following Saturday on 3/14/14.

    [-]

    Issue #1: Fall of Moscow

    Story by Garth Ennis

    Art by Goron Parlov


    In 1991, the Soviet Union is on its last legs as the gluttonous Macrosaurus and the vicious Brutusk battle in the city of Moscow! As the city burns and freezes at the same time, will a ragtag group of soldiers and civilians make it out alive?

    [-]

    Issue #2: Flight of the Wyvern

    Story by Alan Moore

    Art by E.J. Su


    German borne Laura Bodewig has been the pilot of the dragon bone armored mecha known as the Vogeladra since 1981. But now in 1993, a foe unlike any other has descended from outer space!

    Its name is
    Dogora, and the giant space amoeba has torn its way from Hamburg to Manchester! A terrible battle is approaching, and the day may only be won by the most desperate of measures.

    [-]

    Issue #3: The Time of the Shiisa*

    Story by Koyoharu Gotōge

    Art by Kentaro Miura


    1972 has been a massive year with the recent uncovering of Mu. But further revelations are yet to come when a giant entity is uncovered in the Okinawan Islands, one with a high resemblance to the King Shiisa, a guardian beast made of stone from ancient myths and legends.

    But when
    Megalon appears in Kyushu and begins making his way down to the islands, the dormant Shiisa may be the only hope for defeating the bombarding beetle!

    Using old traditions and ritual, can a group of holy men and woman awaken the sleeping guardian before Megalon arrives?

    *Translated by Dark Horse Productions and Multimedia Manga Publishing


    [-]

    Issue #4: Operation Strigoi

    Story by Chris Mowry

    Art by Bob Eggleton


    It's been a year since Dagon's attack, and among the many consequences of this event was the breakout at the Monster Island's. Among the escapees is the man eater Gaira, who's has been on the loose in his old hunting grounds in the Pacific ever since.

    As part of a mad plan to lure him back "home", the military uses cloned human flesh and blood that is then tossed over the water.

    But the plan hits a snag when Gaira proves to be more cunning then expected, and when it soon becomes clear that he is not the only thing attracted by blood in the water...


    [-]

    Issue #5: Mechanized Warfare

    Story by James Stokoe

    Art by Matt Frank


    A month after its debut and attacks New York and Chernobyl in 1975, the alien machine known as Mechagodzilla has flown over the African city of Accra.

    For reasons only know to its programming, the mecha lets out a signal that awakens kaiju across the globe, luring monsters old and new to the city. Utter chaos ensues in the warzone as the best of the Kaiju Defense Force goes toe to toe with the monsters in the biggest battle of the century!

    And when Godzilla arrives to fight his doppelganger, eager for a rematch after being blasted across the Hudson River, this battle becomes a war!

    Make sure not to miss this double sized finale!
     
  10. Extras: Breacher Art
    ScriptGenius12

    ScriptGenius12 Know what you're doing yet?

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    Special thanks to Spinotaur on DeviantArt for drawing these creatures.

    Cuda-Walker
    [​IMG]

    Tsuruga Port Breachers
    [​IMG]
     
  11. Extras: Series in the Crossover
    ScriptGenius12

    ScriptGenius12 Know what you're doing yet?

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    Major:

    -Godzilla

    -Pacific Rim

    -Colossal Kaiju Combat

    -Monster Musume

    -Infinite Stratos

    -Nasuverse

    -Little Witch Academia

    Minor:

    -Various one shot Kaiju movies (EX: Cloverfield) and other series (EX: Ultraman) whose character's do not currently have much prominence-

    Yet.
     
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2021
    Nyarl-sama and Akuma-Heika like this.
  12. ScriptGenius12

    ScriptGenius12 Know what you're doing yet?

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    All edits are done.

    For TLOG, Chapter 7: Tremors is in the process of being written. Apologies for the delay, Quarantine and Doom Eternal just made time fly by.
     
  13. ATP

    ATP Not too sore, are you?

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    Monsters and cute monster girls - ideal combo.
    P.S since author made unknown caves under sea bottom,then what about adding Cthultu sleeping there ? Or at least REAL Dagon ,Hydra and their children...
     
  14. ScriptGenius12

    ScriptGenius12 Know what you're doing yet?

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    Dagon and C’Thura, a Cthulhu expy, appear on the previous story Godzilla The Monarch Files.


    Haven’t posted I here yet but hear you go:
    https://forums.spacebattles.com/thr...icross-fusion-completed-sequel-is-out.725457/
     
  15. ATP

    ATP Not too sore, are you?

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    Thanks.
    But i like climate of Cthultu mythos,when people usually are not eaten by monsters,but lost their minds or start worshipping them.
    If you could add some Kajiu cults among population,with mandatory human sacifices,it would be interesting.
     
  16. ScriptGenius12

    ScriptGenius12 Know what you're doing yet?

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    A prominent “Cult of G” is mentioned in both stories.
     
  17. ATP

    ATP Not too sore, are you?

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    Yes,but it is not enough in my opinion.Most Kaiju should get their worshippers,included Godzilla.
     
  18. ScriptGenius12

    ScriptGenius12 Know what you're doing yet?

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    25% of new chapter is done, here's a preview.

    Located on the Atlantic coast of Central Africa, the country of Gabon was divided into nine provinces. One such province was named after the Ngouniè River that runs through it. Like the rest of the country, the Ngouniè Province was home to a myriad of peoples that included the descendants of native tribes, French colonists, and immigrants.

    To a variety of environments, ranging from green rainforests and grassy plains to steep mountains and growing towns and cities.

    To over five and a half thousand species of flora in addition to hundreds of animal species.

    And to a living Titan who towered above the forests and towns.

    One who had sprung forth from the Earth, out of legend and into everyday life like so many other giants in the past century.

    And where these strange beasts ended up treading, there would be those who feared them.

    Those who fought them.

    And those who sought them.

    [-]

    6:30 AM

    February 16th, 2014

    Ngouniè Province, Gabon

    Mafune Residence


    Within the edges of civilization, a seeker prepared for her journey.

    The room was surrounded by four wooden walls and a roof. The floor was of similar make, albeit with sparse carpeting with more then a few rips and tears in it. A single disused light bulb hung from the ceiling. There were two entrances in the back of the room, one a wooden door, the other a simple beige tarp. Hot morning light streamed through two glass windows on the left.

    Shelves to the right and stocked with books and disc cases, while most other furniture consisted of a few tables with objects strewn about them, ranging from radios and microscopes to books and VHS tapes. An outdated artistic depiction of an Allosaurus menaced explorers on the cover of Doyle’s The Lost World. Randa’s Hollow Earth: Past and Future was emblazoned with a still frame of a battle across a river between two Skullcrawlers, a shot straight from the infamous “Skull Tapes”. Most of the VHS’s were documentaries and such. A few with no covers were kept in clear cases with words like “Incident Footage” and “Local Megafauna Battle” written in marker with certain dates and names to help distinguish them. One particularly worn VHS contained a copy of The Terminator. On the cover, the leather clad visage of Sylvester Stallone menacingly stared ahead, silver pistol raised as a red eye glowered under his shades.

    At the back of the room near the tarp, the seeker sat in front of an old oak desk. A laptop and a fan sat side by side as she typed on the former. A woman of Asian descent, she wore a white t-shirt and beige shorts to cope with the heat. The woman’s skin had a bronze tan that spoke of much time in the sun. Her long dark hair was tied into two straight twin tails that went down to her waist. Sitting on top of a wooden swivel seat, the woman leaned forwards as her fingers clacked over the keyboard, white light reflecting off a pair of rectangular glasses.

    Two photos were on the desk to the side. The first photo was a blurry image that appeared to have been taken from an aerial view at night over the ocean. A massive red tail covered in black bumps protruded from the surface of the waves. A yellow flipper that could also be described as a fin terminated at the end of the tail, and the darkness made it hard to make out the rest of the creature that the great limb was attached to. 12/20/14 Atlantic 10:00 PM was helpfully written above.

    The second photo depicted the fossilized form of a massive creature that resembled a mosasaur.. The fossil sat on the bottom of a metallic tank full of red-tinted water while a team of divers clad in black armor swam around the body. Heavy spotlights illuminated the scene from above. Black tube-like wires plugged into the back the armored divers, keeping them suspended while the team shined light on the bones. Other divers appeared to be in the process of taking samples with drill tipped devices that resembled augers. The devices were labeled on their shiny gray sides with the image of a red DNA strand. The picture appeared to have been taken from behind a reinforced window, judging by the shadow of the apparent photographer that could be faintly seen on a clear surface close to the skull of the animal. There was no date, but Hebei Mine Fossil was crudely written in marker near the bottom.

    Three posted notes were scattered across the desk. Hastily written kana conveyed the seekers thoughts.

    -Fifth sighting at Sargasso Sea over a four month period. Investigating a threat? Old territory?

    -Fossil footage leaker unknown. Facility design and tech consistent with known Survival Party operations. Mole directly within the SP? Hackers?

    -Fossil rumored to be formally classified as T. Aquatilis. Possible sub-species? Ancestor or descendant of T?


    Names and locations were transcribed along with numbered sequences that denoted the days and times of sightings of a particular creature. Modern Titanosaurus History [Updated] labeled her document in the upper left category of the program. She began to transcribe her paper notes onto the screen then checked her watch. It was time to get ready for today’s activity. After making sure her progress was saved, she opened a small drawer on the left of the desk and reached into it, pulling out a red flare gun, a worn yellow key, and a wallet in the process. She was about to close it when the sight of something within made her pause.

    A black plastic attached to a dark cord lay at the bottom of the wooden drawer. The upper right corner was imprinted with a logo made up of two black and white triangles facing each other.

    The symbol of Monarch, one sometimes compared to an hourglass or a moth.

    To the left was a headshot of her younger self. The hair was shorter, down to her shoulders. Brown eyes were visible without her glasses. Information listed on the right side of the card listed various details alongside dates and other general information.

    -Mion Mafune

    -Bioacoustics Division

    -Outpost Clearance 075/089/097

    -Access Lvl 4


    It was a fragment of older times, some good, some bad. A life she had left behind years ago.

    Slowly closing the drawer, she then exited the room through the tarp entrance.

    It was time to see the Titan of Gabon once more.
     
    ATP and meloa789 like this.
  19. ATP

    ATP Not too sore, are you?

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    Good to see you again.If they made children in normal way,then they need more monsters,but if all of them were females which simply lay eggs without need for male,it would be easier to explain.
     
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