decisions, decisions, what awaits the gundam force? Pity things can't go according to plan for just one day.
Chapter two! Yay!
Notes about Graye- she is a challenge to write. She is generally calm, just the kind of teenager that says `whatever' to life, but she has her sore spots. She's hard to write because the cast of SDGF has such varied speech patterns. She has to sound unique without sounding generic / Mary Sue, which is hard.
I try very hard not to swear/use profanities in this story simply because SDGF doesn't use cursewords originally. The worst word you'll hear so far in this chapter from Graye is possibly `screw'. Not a lot of cussing, possibly more later. Dunno.
Disclaimer: I do not own SD gundam. There. I said it, now SD Gundam owning ME, that's another matter…
Chapter 1 - Chapter 2 - Chapter 3
2. Virtue of Necessity
“G'way. S'too early,” Graye groaned as Captain poked her awake.
Captain blinked. “You are incapable of functioning at 0600 hours?”
“It's six?” Graye mumbled and looked over at the clock. “Monday too... Argh, I have school. Gotta wake up.” She moaned and sat up in bed, groggy. “You mind getting out so I can change?”
Captain blushed. “Oh… right,” and walked out.
Zero was by the door as he shut it. “Captain, you really have no idea of how to treat a lady, do you?”
“Do they require special conduct?”
Zero nodded. “Most definitely.”
“I do NOT need special conduct,” Graye frowned and opened the door, walking downstairs. Soon they all were in the kitchen, Shute yawning loudly.
“Hey, good morning Graye.”
“You too,” and she grabbed a box off a shelf only to find it empty. She blinked and then turned around. “You ate some poptarts Baku?”
“Wonderful little sweet buns.” He grinned, scratching his head, and gave a small sweatdrop.
Graye shrugged and took an apple out of the fridge and bit into it. “I guess I have to remember that you like them.”
Captain gave a doubtful look. “What is the procedure for today?”
“Uh, Hadn't thought of that…” Graye grinned nervously and took another bite of apple. “Guess you guys should come to school with me; there's nothing here to do.”
Shute blinked. “I don't think we'll really fit in.”
“Sure you guys will; all you have to do is borrow some of my big brothers clothes, and you guys will be fine. `Sides, it's not like he can pop back from college and tell me off for lending a few outfits to a couple of SDG members, right?” Graye offered and took another bite.
Zero blinked. “What exactly will we do at this school of yours?”
“Us? Nothing. I maxed out graduation requirements a while ago including community service. It was a pain; taking two years worth of math and stuff at the same time isn't a picnic, but now all I have to do is show up. And you guys… uh… what's a good excuse...” she fumbled, “Are `visiting the country' and seeing what the schools are like. Shute, your excuse can be is that you are thinking of attending my school later and are tagging onto an upperclassman. Believe me, I don't think many people will ask questions. Let's say my school has a lot of… colorful characters that guidance cares more about than they do about me and whoever I drag around.”
“It sounds like you schemed much over this problem,” Baku stated
Graye shook her head. “Miss one too many homework assignments and you will get very good at making up excuses to cover your butt.”
All of the gundams turned to Shute.
“WHAT?!” Shute yelped.
Graye gave a weird look at them and tossed out her apple core. Casually she glanced out the window and saw a faint dusting of white powder on the ground. “It's cold out. Ok, let's go play dress-up with you guys.”
Shute instantly cracked up.
“You are sure your brother will not mind us borrowing his clothes?” Bakunetsumaru asked skeptically and flattened a wrinkle on a jacket.
Graye rolled her eyes as she paced to her locker, followed by her company. “Nah, even if he did find out he wouldn't go nuts over it. He's a kabillion miles away right now, so the `if' part doesn't even matter.”
“Graye,” Captain stated, “`Kabillion' is not a existent amount.”
The girl gave a frown. “I wasn't being realistic, Captain. He's actually in LA right now. He's at college.”
Zero looked at Graye for a second while fixing his vest, “Your kin attends an academy… what sort of institution is it, milady?”
“Hell I would know. He's a cripple, so it's probably somewhere with a lot of wheelchair ramps.”
Shute gave a curious look as he eyed the rows of lockers, but deemed it best not to say anything as Graye approached hers to stow her bag, which was full of a whole lot of nothing at all.
The girl entered the combination and snapped the compartment open, but as soon as she did a huge wave of pink paper flooded out and buried her.
“Gah!” she yelped as she was bombarded and brushed a folded letter out of her hair, one of nearly ten thousand copies. “What the crap?!
Shute giggled, “That wasn't supposed to happen, was it?”
“No…it…was…not…” Graye scowled at the letter as she read it. Then, it was torn up into confetti and thrown in no direction in particular. The disgruntled girl stuffed her bag in the locker, slammed it shut, locked it with a click and turned on her heel. “I'm going to first period. You guys mill around and do whatever. We'll meet up at lunch. Seeya,” she said and rushed off.
“What in Mana's name was THAT concerning?!” Zero commented and picked up one of the letters. He read a few lines and then grimaced “Oh my…”
Bakunetsumaru tried to look over Zero's shoulder. “What is the problem? Did someone challenge her to honorable single combat?”
“Hardly.” Zero frowned. “These are love notes. Rather VULGAR love notes. Whichever cur of a troubadour wrote this, they couldn't have been serious. And while these may not be notes of challenge, I fear that someone's head is about to roll.”
Captain took the letter, and then looked at Shute, who was about to pick one up, “I recommend you not reading these, Shute.”
The serious gundam for once gave a blush. “They contain detailed descriptions of genital organs as well as… very accurate accounts of the initialization of the human reproductive system, Shute. Your mother would not be pleased if you read them.”
Shute gave a huge blush as well as a sick look. “Oh.”
“Now this,” Baku glared, “Is a low and dishonorable act. Any man pulling such a feat should be stopped.”
Zero looked at the samurai dryly. “I must agree with thy sentiment. What villain could have pulled this?!”
“Please Mr. Kauffman, my friend Baku isn't going to kill anyone!” Graye pressed at the teacher that was staring warily over a lunch table at the pair of swords that Bakunetsumaru had insisted on bringing.
The teacher gave an untrusting look. “Weapons are not allowed in this school. I'll have to confiscate them.”
“You don't get it. Baku is in the drama club. He just came from rehearsal, and these are props. Please let us alone.”
Once again he didn't let up. “Those are real. Give them here.”
Graye gave a serious, critical look and leaned over and whispered into the teacher's ear, “I can't do that. Baku has a mental condition in which he must carry weapons around, or he'll go nuts. It's a case of severe paranoia, and if he doesn't have his swords he'll blow up the school. Trust me on this one, don't tick him off,” she semi-lied and the teacher gave an appalled glance.
“Okay. I see,” he stammered and walked quickly away.
Shute looked at Graye, “What did you say to him?! He looked pretty scared.”
“I told him that Bakunetsumaru would probably blow up the school if he didn't have his swords, which probably isn't that far off of a guess.”
The samurai huffed. “How dare he try to strip me of my honor!”
Captain leaned over, “Bakunetsumaru, this school has rules similar to Neotopia. No violence of any kind is permitted.”
“Wrong,” Graye stated dryly, “The school doesn't care who gets into a fistfight and who doesn't. You could go up to any random persona and punch them in the face and the office wouldn't notice a thing. It's the prospect of being sued. If a kid goes around with weapons and then hurts another kid, the person who got hurt can sue the school for not confiscating the weapon.”
Bakunetsumaru blinked. “The power in this land is corrupt?”
“Yeah, pretty much. Even schools are a mess. People try to ignore what's going on, try live their daily lives, but everything just falls apart faster.”
Zero gave a confused look. “M'lady, what troubles thy homeland?”
“I'll tell you in a sec.” Graye growled, staring at the back of a boy laughing to his friends. She got up, can of soda in hand and quietly crept up behind him.
“And I tell you Blake, she had the stupidest look on her face! It was worth all the writing; I've never seen her that pissed!” he laughed, but then froze as a hand appeared on his shoulder and turned him to face Graye, a cold look on her face.
She gave a piercing stare and said, “If you like the expression that much, take a good long look.” She hissed and released him.
“Oh, look. It's YOU.” He grinned messily, “You come to finally say you want me or what?”
“You wish. I KNOW you put those cards in my locker.”
“Huh? Whatcha talkin' about?”
“Don't be stupid. If you think I can't recognize your writing by now, you're sadly mistaken.”
The boy gulped. “Darnit…”
“Well heck with that!” he said and lunged at her.
Gray rolled her eyes and casually stepped to the side. “Bad choice,” she scorned and kicked him… in a private area. “Thanks for the descriptive letters. I knew exactly where to aim.”
“Sweet holy…” he coughed as he doubled over.
Graye took his waistband and stretched it open, dumping the contents of her soda can inside and letting it snap back. The boy collapsed to the ground, pants soaked and in considerable pain. “There. Now you look as dumb as you really are. Ciao,” she waved and walked back to the table, the entire gundam team staring with wide eyes.
Shute stuttered, “You… just kicked that dude in the nuts!” He then looked at the embarrassed boy on the ground nursing his wounded pride.
“Well duh.” She sighed and collapsed onto the bench. “That guy is a nonstop headache; all he does is get on my case.”
Captain blinked. “You were about to explain the current crisis facing this world.”
“Huh? oh, ok.” She nodded, “There's a war going on. But it's very far away from here. Or so we're told.”
Zero was intrigued. “This world struggles with the Dark Axis as well?”
“No idea. No one's said who - or what we're fighting. All we know is that they are some kind of mecha, and there's a ton of them. All countries deny controlling the attacking force, so no one really knows what's going on, even though it's been nearly four years since this all started.”
Captain nodded. “The information is confidential and not available to civilians?”
“If the world leaders know anything, they're keeping it hushed. I'm amazed we've held out this long… but I have my fair share of doubts.”
Shute blinked. “About what?”
“Every few days there's an attack somewhere or another. I've witnessed two so far. The list of missing people gets longer and longer, and it's full of citizens who witnessed the attacks. Thank god I've not been caught in a crossfire zone, or I probably would be either dead or missing myself by now.”
“The army is handling the threat?”
“I think. I don't really know any details. Wish I did, though. The army ships tons of people off to fight every day, and I hope it doesn't come to high school students. My brother had a rough enough time…”
“Your brother?” Shute blinked, and Graye drew back as if she had bitten into something bitter.
“Never mind,” Graye said quickly as the bell rung. Students flooded out of the cafeteria, leaving the gundam force to ponder.
Shute grinned as he ran out the door, the bell still ringing in his ears. “Yay! It's snowing!” he sang and stomped footprints in the fresh powder.
Bakunetsumaru eyed it with distaste. “I don't like it.”
Graye laughed at Shute's exclamations they walked down the street. “We get a lot of snow in the winter here.”
A steady stream of flakes fell on the wind as Zero looked up at the sky in irritation. He would probably liked nothing more than to fly around in this weather, but flying in public here was a big no-no. “Truth be told, there is hardly any snowfall in Lacroa,” he informed.
“Lucky. You don't have to shovel out walkways to get to the street,” she shrugged. “I have to run some errands before I get home. You guys want to eat, right?”
“It would be desirable,” Captain commented, but then his head shot up. “There is a dimensional tear twenty meters to the north!” he exclaimed, and Bakunetsumaru's hands flew to his swords…
Too late. An explosion rocked the street and everyone either fled or was blasted to the ground. Before Graye, Captain, or anyone else could rise white smoke filled the air, totally obscuring vision.
What cowards! They attempt to strike from afar, not daring to show their faces!, I thought in fury as I began to draw my swords to deal with the threat. Even Zapper Zaku and the rest of the scum of the Dark Axis showed themselves to their enemies!
Something exploded off to my left and threw everyone a couple of feet, though it dealt no damage aside from minor scrapes. Yet another display of underhanded tactics.
For a moment, I saw the red glow of what I recognized as a Zako's eye in the shadow of the buildings, but a moment later a great deal of smoke clouded my sight.
I cannot say the situation that came over me. It was as if something had completely exhausted my strength and dulled my perception. I collapsed under my own weight, unable to hold myself upright. A silent cry of rage at the shameful conduct of my foes rang through my mind as I seemingly shut down. Vaguely, I was aware of something dragging me away by the legs, and then I knew no more.
-Third person POV-
“Systems…back online?” Captain mumbled in confusion as he blinked open groggily. All those that had been affected had started to stir, and vaguely Bakunetsumaru could be heard mumbling about Zakos and honor.
Shute sat up to look at a slightly bedraggled-looking Graye. “Wha…what happened?”
“An attack happened. We're lucky to be alive,” she stated. They were in an alleyway, obscured from prying eyes.
The gundams sat up as well. “Milady…” Zero groaned, “What exactly befell us?”
“The army uses knockout gas to get civilians to the ground as fast as possible. They don't want them being shot in the firefight. You guys breathe now, so you were affected.”
“Where are we now?” Baku asked.
Graye sighed, “The closest safe place I could find. I dragged you guys out of the gas cloud after you fainted.”
Captain looked horrified, “In the middle of an active firefight?!”
“You bet,” she stated bitterly, “It would stink for any of you to be abducted.”
Shute looked at Graye oddly. “Why didn't the gas get you?”
“Covered my nose with my scarf and held my breath as best I could. I've been in this situation before,” she stated sadly.
Bakunetsumaru frowned. “Really.”
“How do you think my brother got to be a cripple, Baku?” she spat in remorse and looked out the alley. “It's over. It's weird, there are never even bodies or anything after it's done. The smoke clears, and then there's nothing. Let's go; we still have to get home.”
Shut nodded and got up. “Wow. Your world's really in trouble.”
Graye said nothing, but just walked away into the snow of the street, lost to her own sadness.
“Ah! My phone!” Shute mumbled as he dug it out of his pocket. Everyone had long since arrived at the house, and Graye had gotten over her moping fit.
The phone flickered `incoming transmission, please wait' for a moment, and then a holographic Chief Haro came on screen.
“Good evening, team,” Haro nodded and Captain saluted.
“Captain Gundam reporting, sir!”
Shute gave a salute, too. “Shute and the others reporting, too, Chief Haro!”
Graye stared wide-eyed at the hologram in her living room. “Uh... okay?”
“Has any progress been made on our… situation?” Bakunetsumaru huffed.
“Some, gentlemen,” he nodded. “We have found the cause of the malfunction.”
Captain nodded. “What was the case?”
“As you know, a party attempted to transport off Neotopia at the same time you did. It seems that our new janitorial staff have vanished as well, along with their confiscated possessions.”
Zero frowned, “Those villains are loose?!”
“I'm afraid so.”
“Dark Axis scum…” Bakunetsumaru muttered.
Graye stifled a laugh. “Guess Zapper Zaku didn't like cleaning dustbins.”
The holographic Chief Haro's mask did its funny little flip-thing. “Who exactly are you?! This information is confidential!”
Shute bowed, “She's a friend of the SDG, Chief Haro. She already knows all about us, and she's letting us stay in her house.”
Graye stood up and walked over to the hologram. “Long story made short, sir, your world is a really obscure old cartoon here.”
Haro's eyes gave an intrigued flash. “Interesting. What is your name?”
“Graye Kenneth, sir. I'll do my best to help however I can,” she introduced respectfully.
“Pleased to make your acquaintance, Miss Kenneth,” Haro replied, “We are working as fast as we can on your recall.”
“Sir Haro,” Zero bowed, “While I do appreciate the sentiment, thy actions are not needed at this time.”
“What exactly do you mean?”
Captain stepped forward. “This dimension is currently involved with a conflict against the Dark Axis. While we are currently marooned, logic suggests that it is best to resolve the situation here before we move on.”
Grayes' eyes widened. “You don't mean… You guys are going to stay?”
Bakunetsumaru shrugged. “While my homeland needs me at this moment, I am not one to dismiss a conflict that could hinder my return.”
Graye nodded. “Ah. I see.”
Haro gave a slight sigh. “If that is what is needed at this time. A war on your end could disrupt the transport, and send you to some place even less desirable. Very well then; carry on,” Haro agreed, and was about to cut the communications, but he turned his head to the youngest boy, and in a concerned tone added, “Shute, I must remind you to be even more careful than usual. In this world, you are as much as a target as your teammates, and not simply a victim of kidnapping either. I repeat, exercise extreme caution while in this world.”
“Over and out,” he ended, and disappeared.
Graye looked at them all, on the verge of tears. “You're serious?!”
Captain looked at her neutrally. “One hundred percent serious.”
“Milady, I am not one to abandon one in need, especially such a fair damsel as thyself,” Zero agreed.
“My reasons are my own, But I am proud to consider you an ally.”
Shute gave a grin, “You're our friend! Did you think we could just leave you and your world to get taken over? It's our job to help!”
Graye gave a look of happy, almost disbelieving surprise. “You guys rock so much.”
Yeah, yeah, it got a little angsty-ish emotional at the end of the story, but no matter how hard she tries to hide it, Graye's a really emotional girl. Dood, I'd like to see you not be emotional after your brother being a cripple and your home being under attacked.|
I've gotten Mary Sue mails. Graye isn't a Sue. Her past isn't particularly horrific, her parents are a little eccentric, but that's it. Nothing beyond her dad being protective of his lawn. Her parents are currently away attempting to help rapidly collapsing foreign relations (both are translators) and are simply gone for a while. Her brother was drafted, and then wounded in battle. She's pretty average, but she's afraid of being drafted before she's finished school, so she maxed out High school early.
Fun fact- Graye is Basophobic. Her greatest fear is falling from some place really high up (like off a plane, with or without a parachute) so being in the sky is very scary for her (unless she's in an enclosed building, then she just hates to look out the windows).
Chapter 1 - Chapter 2 - Chapter 3