- OFB4 Chapter 5: Rebellion
ZAC 2101, November
| Continent of Nyx
| Imperial Capital of Valhalla
Prozen had raised a flag of rebellion in Valhalla. The Helic Guylos Allied Forces were heading for the Imperial City.
There was one battalion of guards protecting the Imperial palace. It was a glittering unit that would shine in a parade. The members were all heirs of famous families who'd never fought in actual battles. It was fair to say that they were just for decoration.
It was the task of these volunteer soldiers to protect the Imperial Capital. This sounded good in theory, but these were second-line or lower units that were placed in reserve even in the case of an all-out attack order. In other words, they were amateurs.
Suddenly, the PK Division attacked this inferior force. Their total strength was made up of 5 armored divisions and 5 mobile infantry divisions. It was an ironclad force composed of former Zenebas soldiers who had dedicated their lives to Prozen. After the massacre that could hardly be called a battle, the Imperial Capital was overrun and the Guylos flag at the Emperor's palace was set ablaze. As the first snow fell, a crimson banner with a serpent and a dagger was raised in its stead. It was the banner of Zenebas, who had perished 50 years ago.
Prozen began his speech.
"My name is Muroa. Gunther Prozen Muroa. I'm the first Emperor of the Neo Zenebas Empire."
The 150,000 members of the PK Division erupted in thunderous cheers.
"The time has come. Now is the time to fight under the banner of Zenebas. To defeat Guylos, and Helic, and to put an end to our long history of humiliation. Then, we shall return to our homeland, the Central Continent!"
The provocations against the armies of the Helic Republic and the Guylos Empire were carried on every radio frequency. This was also an oath of the founding of a new empire.
For the first time, Schwarz, and all of the Guylos people knew. The man they had been silently following, risking their lives for, was of the blood of a foreign king. At the same time, they were afraid. They feared the iron will and intellect of the man who had deceived a nation, risen to the highest power, and kept his ambitions warm for so long.
But would this rebellion even succeed?
Regardless of the strength of the PK Division and the Eisen Dragoon unit, which had yet to be seen, there was no way they could take on the remaining Imperial troops which were now marching toward the Imperial Capital. The spearhead alone numbered 30 divisions. More than four times as many units were being reorganized in various locations at the rear, and that wasn't all. Thirty divisions from the Republican Army were also accompanying this advance. There was no way they could lose.
Nevertheless, Schwarz would've normally felt uneasy about Prozen's reckless uprising, and tried to read more into it. However, his judgement was clouded by his injuries, and his fear for Rudolph's safety.
"Is His Majesty the Emperor alive?"
He wondered. It would've been better to keep him alive and use him for negotations than to kill him.
Hermann of the Republican Army, which had joined the Guylos Army in besieging Valhalla, was a bit more clear minded. If they were going to throw in the Eisen Dragoon unit, it would have to be before their siege was complete. Only, there was no sign of them.
Did the shadow unit have a greater mission? A mission greater than protecting their first emperor...
- OFB4 Chapter 5: Rebellion
The Emperor's Palace, located almost in the center of the Imperial Capital of Valhalla, was equipped with facilities equivalent to a small base. The former Emperor Guylos had tried to claim supremacy over all of Planet Zi. It was a remnant of his military prowess. The sole crimson Death Saurer left behind by Prozen had been brought to this facility. Two emperors faced each other in front of its massive form. Prozen and Rudolph.
"The Bloody Death Saurer. Isn't it a magnificent red? This is the red Death Dragon that will stain your Empire with blood."
The monitor showed countless allied troops surrounding the palace.
"They seem desperate to save you. They don't even know that they're just rats who've jumped into the bag themselves... Do you know what these pipes are?"
Prozen pointed to the numerous pipes extending from the back of the Bloody Death Saurer.
"Underground, these pipes are branching out, connecting to dozens of key points all throughout Valhalla. At the end of each one is the Zoid Core of a Death Saurer, cores that weren't converted into machine beasts in time. What if, all at once, these cores began to collapse?"
Prozen looked like a ghost as he smiled. Two years ago, when the Death Saurer's first experimental unit had melted down, Mount Olympus on the Western Continent, which had been its test site, had been transformed into a mountain of death. An explosion several dozen times larger than that, though? In the Imperial Capital, which was home to 30 million citizens?
"The Bloody Death Saurer is the detonator that shall trigger the simultaneous collapse of all those Zoid Cores. It's for me to draw the first act of revenge, with my own hands."
That was the true purpose of Prozen's reckless rebellion, and that 'inconsistency' that he'd mentioned earlier, it was to blow himself up along with the Helic-Guylos allied forces.
- OFB4 Chapter 5: Rebellion
Rudolph challenged Prozen's Bloody Death Saurer with his Saber Tiger Gold. The young Emperor of Guylos would risk his life in a desperate battle to save his people and his army.
"Countless citizens have died in the last two years. And yet, you still wish for more blood, Emperor Muroa?"
Rudolph opened his mouth for the first time. His voice carried a dignity one wouldn't expect from a 12-year-old boy, and a straightforward anger befitting one.
"You believe that is the only path to dispelling the 50-year grudge of the Zenebas soldiers? Do you intend to vanish from the face of the planet, taking with you Guylos, Helic and even your own soldiers!?"
Prozen too replied with dignity.
"The PK Division and I are gladly prepared to become cornerstones, for the true revival of our Empire."
Unaware of the trap that awaited them, the combined Helic-Guylos forces advanced to the front of the Imperial Palace, where they clashed with the PK Division.
"Cornerstones? You, its Emperor?"
"My son Wolff and the Eisen Dragoon will inherit my will. The Eisen Dragoon has already set sail for the Central Continent... And they will act in concert with the former Zenebas citizens, racing across the Republic's territory like a deserted field now that they have sent all their forces to the Dark Continent."
"That's why? You made yourself a decoy for that!?"
"It has been more than 40 years since I started out empty-handed. I doubt that my wish could have been accomplished without this much resolve."
There was silence for a while. Eventually, Rudolph let out a deep sigh.
"I challenge you to a duel."
"A duel? Against you, my captive? What for? What benefit is there for me?"
"It's not a matter of gain or loss. I, the Emperor of Guylos, have challenged you, the Emperor of Neo Zenebas, to a duel. Will you accept with pride or not?"
His eyes were forthright.
"The pride of emperors... Certainly, I cannot fault that as a reason. And we still have some time before your soldiers will be gathered sufficiently. It would be dull to simply wait all that time. I humbly accept your challenge."
On the other hand, the Eisen Dragoons, who'd inherited Prozen's will, secretly approached the Central Continent. They were waiting for the right time to land.
Prozen responded in a sincere voice, without any sign of mocking the young boy. Rudolph smiled.
"To be honest, I never liked you. You were closest to me as my supporter ever since I was little, and yet you never once tried to show me your heart... But at the same time, I respected you. Because you were the only one who showed me how someone in a position of leadership should be... Of course, I don't like you now either. But just as you showed me how you lived for your citizens and soldiers, I will protect mine!"
Rudolph had chosen to pilot a Saber Tiger for the duel. The Emperor's own shining gold machine had been installed in his official residence.
Prozen's machine was the Bloody Death Saurer. The difference in strength was much more than a handicap. The Gold Tiger was a high-performance machine that was said to be about 15 times more powerful than the standard unit, but it couldn't be compared to the fighting power of the Death Saurer. No, from the very start this problem went beyond the difference in power between the two machines. Rudolph had never even sat in the cockpit of a Zoid without an escort. On the contrary, Prozen had the qualities of a hardcore Zoid rider who had personally piloted Zoids to subdue the mobs during the chaos that followed The Great Catastrophe.
From the very beginning, there was no chance of winning this battle. However, it was Rudolph himself who had chosen this machine. He had no intention of winning. All he wanted to do was to tear out even one of the Death Saurer's pipes, to try to save as many of his people and soldiers as he could. Even if it was the most hopeless hope imaginable...
Green text is translated courtesy of Falcarius!
- Current Navigation