The Gundam Beauty Pageant|
by Charon the Sabercat
Madnug. I had totally forgotten about Madnug.
Chapter 44 - Chapter 45 - Chapter 46
The Gundam Beauty Pageant|
45. Madnug's in it, FINALLY
Charon ushered the very happy, very wet Gundamaniacs into the compound, the Gundams tailing behind them. The Cobramaru brothers laid their unconscious brother on the sofa of the break room. Charon surveyed the mechas sternly.
“We're still missing two.” Charon rubbed her forehead worriedly. “Captain and Madnug. We'll have to look for them after the rain's past-”
Suddenly, the door to the kids' building slammed open!
And then there was Shute. A very, very angry Shute.
“Oh boy…” Cybertoy flinched in anticipation.
“WHERE IS HEEEEEEEE?!”
The boy's voice penetrated into the heart of every person in the room. They all felt his fury, his fear, his feeling of betrayal, but mostly, they felt the blood pounding on their sore eardrums.
Charon gingerly took her hands off of her ears. “Shute, calm down. Captain's just in the forest-”
“Why isn't he inside?” the boy cried, voice warbling painfully. He clenched his fists tightly.
“I-I don't know.” Charon waved her hand calmly. “Look, why don't you go back to the kid's room, and we'll go find Captain when the rain stops-”
“NO!” screamed Shute. “He's in danger, I can feel it! And I'm the only one who can find him!”
The boy bolted past the group and through the door outside, not bothering to close it behind him. Charon raced after him only to be stopped by Cybertoy, who grabbed her by the arm.
“Wait, hold on! If anyone can find him, it's Shute. We should let him go.”
“He can't go out there alone!” Charon moaned.
“Charon,” SilverBellsAbove said with a smirk, “Do I have to remind you this is one of your fanfictions?”
“And what is that supposed to mean?” the sabercat snapped.
Kichiko smiled. “He'll be fine. Why don't you go back to the kids' room, and we'll go find Shute when the rain stops?”
Charon looked seriously, but she was not-too-successfully hiding a smile. “That was mean.”
Captain's arm was just about to sink into the water when a hand grabbed a hold of it, hoisting the Gundam out of the water and throwing him roughly back to shore. Captain fell lifeless onto the ground, eyes blank.
Madnug landed next to him, stretching his booster rockets calmly. “You don't know how long I've been waiting for this, Captain Gundam.”
The black Gundam readied his beam rifle. “The great hero killed by the Gundam they didn't think to save… how fitting. Say goodbye, Captain…”
He placed his finger on the trigger and pressed it, not quite firing the gun. He had to savor this moment. The moment he destroyed what had destroyed him. He hadn't won the first time; this was his last chance. His only chance. His moment of glory…
But he couldn't pull the trigger. Something was stopping him.
He thought, why can't I do this? Something must not be right here… maybe it deserves something more personal than a beam rifle… yes, that's it…
Madnug threw his gun to the side and pulled a beam saber off of Captain's shoulder, extending the blade. “Perfect.”
He took Captain by the scruff of his neck and pressed him against a tree, holding the saber at Captain's neck. “The giant beheaded by his own sword. Oh, this is much better than the beam rifle…”
Madnug pressed the blade closer to Captain's shell. It sparked violently as it got closer and closer-
He threw the blade away. Something was wrong! He couldn't do it!
With an angry roar, Madnug tossed Captain back into the dirt. He clutched his head as it throbbed in pain, his mind whirring painfully in thought. Why didn't that work? Why didn't that work?! I've wanted to do this for years! I finally have THE Captain Gundam in my hands, his own sword at his throat, and I still can't kill him? But wait… maybe I shouldn't use a sword. A sword is used for battle. While he's unconscious…
He got a brilliant idea. He'd used his own, bare hands.
He kneeled beside Captain, grasping his head in his hands-
He froze, chest going cold. He'd forgotten how to snap a neck.
He almost screamed again. It was like forgetting how to spell that one last word on a test, an unbearable lapse of the mind in the moment of stress. He beat his fists against Captain's chest in a moment of anger-
He coughed. His eyes lit back up, lightly closed. Madnug froze. Not only had he not killed him, he had woken him back up.
This was his last chance. His last last chance. Madnug grabbed Captain by the neck-
He could finally see the marks all over Captain's body. He saw nicks and dents from the rocks in the ocean. He saw the cracks in his armor where Zapper had held him in his teeth. He saw the gauges in his wrists from his own attempt at his life.
But mostly he saw the weariness in Captain's eyes.
He placed the Gundam on his lap. He'd had it as bad as Madnug had. He'd never seen Captain like this before; in his mind, even since the “incident”, he had seen Captain as a glowing, radiant hero. He was perfect, untouchable. Nothing had ever beaten Captain. Or so he thought.
There was his old hero, lying in his legs, beaten and broken. Not by him, not by any of his enemies. By himself.
He couldn't do it. Period. This was no way to kill a Gundam.
Something moved in the trees behind him. He looked up slowly.
And then there was Shute. A very, very wet Shute.
The boy looked up, breathing heavily but eyes still bright. “Madnug? Is that you?”
He nodded. Shute gulped nervously, but did nothing else.
“It is.” Madnug lifted Captain onto his shoulder. “I found him in the sea. We need to get him back to base.”
Shute didn't move. His jaw dropped, sure, but he was frozen to the spot and couldn't move. Confused. The poor human. They were almost as pitiable as Captain.
“I can't kill him like this,” Madnug explained. “It's undignified. If I'm going to take his life, I'm taking it in combat.”
Shute shut his mouth again, bobbing his head in a nod.
Then he threw his arms around Madnug's neck. “I knew you were good in there somewhere…”
“Let go.” Madnug shoved the boy away. “Save it for Captain. Now, come on.”