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Mobile Suit Gundam - The Second Century (Part 1: Prelude 0099)
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  1. #1
    Moderator Ken Cheng's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Mobile Suit Gundam - The Second Century (Part 1: Prelude 0099)

    Coming soon to the SPCNET Fan Fiction Forum: an epic original story by Ken Cheng from the MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM anime series universe.

    The first part will be available tomorrow. For now, a teaser image to whet your appetite.

    Illustration work by my good friend Andrew Nettleton.



    Comments are welcome!

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    Author’s preface, MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM: THE SECOND CENTURY.

    The following is a discussion of how, many years ago now, I came to write this screenplay/novel. If the origin of my work does not interest you, you may skip directly to Episode 1 and begin reading the story immediately.

    I first became a fan of Japan’s MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM series when I was in high school during the late 1980s. GUNDAM is an anime franchise that needs no introduction. During the past quarter century, GUNDAM has become an epic that has enthralled fans in Japan and around the world every bit as much as STAR TREK or STAR WARS.

    The original MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM storyline appeared as a television series in 1979, and was compiled into three reanimated feature films in 1981 and 1982. This was followed by a successful sequel, MOBILE SUIT ZETA GUNDAM, in 1985, which was in turn followed by MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM DOUBLE ZETA. The original storyline of the GUNDAM series wrapped up with the feature film MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM: CHAR'S COUNTERATTACK in 1988. There would be new GUNDAM TV series and movies after that, up to this very day, but the original storyline that followed the war between the Earth Federation and the Archduchy of Zeon ended with CHAR’S COUNTERATTACK, and the original cast of GUNDAM characters was not seen again.

    MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM: THE SECOND CENTURY picks up from where GUNDAM DOUBLE ZETA and CHAR’S COUNTERATTACK left off, and follows the trials and tribulations of the second generation of the Universal Century characters, essentially the direct successors of the first generation of GUNDAM characters.

    One does not necessarily need an in-depth familiarity with the original GUNDAM to enjoy the story I have written, but a good understanding of the original series will help readers to more fully appreciate the characters, particularly in their motivations and challenges. It will also accentuate certain recurring themes of the GUNDAM universe. I wrote this story so that it can be taken both ways: as the sequel to the original GUNDAM series, and as a standalone story that can be compelling on its own merits.

    My original concept for this project divided the story into three parts:

    First is MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM - THE SECOND CENTURY (PRELUDE 0099), in which we are introduced to two of our principal characters, Athena Ibaz and Jolie Minh. This was a script for a 10-part OAV that would establish the basic background for the meat of the story, which is part 2.

    MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM – THE SECOND CENTURY was conceived as a 50-episode anime TV series, continuing the story of Athena Ibaz and Jolie Minh, and introduces the third main character, Jonah Miguel, who would play a pivotal role in both Athena and Jolie’s lives, as well as the course of the latest (and last) Earth/Zeon war.

    MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM – THE DARK SIDE OF THE MOON was to be the third and final part of the story, taking place five years after the end of THE SECOND CENTURY. Conceived as a two-hour animated feature film, it would chronicle the final chapter of Athena Ibaz and Jolie Minh’s long and complex relationship, and the dawn of a new age in the GUNDAM universe.

    I did most of the work for this project between 1991 and 1995, with some highly skilled friends helping to provide illustration work. By 1995, I had compiled over 1000 pages of work. Unfortunately, the beginning of work and other commitments led me to abandon the project, and it’s been sitting on my shelf for over a decade.

    But I think the time has come to share it with the readers here at SPCNET. I hope you enjoy the ride.



    Ken Cheng

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    EPISODE 1: ATHENA

    Opens with a field of stars glittering in the cosmos. The camera pans to the right, and the legend, “U.C. 0089” appears on the screen.

    Explosions light the emptiness of space. We are treated to the sight of the Neo Zeon Empire’s Axis Space Fortress under heavy assault by waves of Earth Federation/AEUG (Anti-Earth Union Government) Alliance mobile suits (MS) and spacecruisers. It is the Battle of Side 3 – the same battle that ended the GUNDAM ZZ series, but seen from the perspective of the Neo Zeon side.

    The camera closes in on Axis Fortress, then behind the fortress to give us an unobstructed view of Zum City Colony, the capital city of the Archduchy of Zeon. We go into the colony to see that it is occupied by Federal Forces/AEUG MS that have landed to seek out any hidden survivors of the Neo Zeon leadership.

    The camera continues to pan towards the royal palace of the defeated Archduchy of Zeon. The palace is in shambles. Inside, many Zeon military officers, civil officials, and domestic servants are scrambling to cover or trying to escape. Many more lie dead on the palace floor.

    In the royal court, the remaining leaders of the Neo Zeon military have gathered: General Carloman Miguel, General Omar Damascus, General Adrian Reglas, General Lara Constantinas. The military leaders gather around a tiny figure: ten year old Princess Minerva Zabi, daughter of Prince Dozle Zabi and final surviving heir of the Zabi Royal Family that rules the Archduchy of Zeon. Also with them is Dory, the princess’ nanny.



    Princess Minerva Zabi of the Archduchy of Zeon, seen here at age 10 in U.C. 0089. Image from MOBILE SUIT ZETA GUNDAM (1985)


    “Your majesty,” General Miguel informs Minerva, “our space fleet has been defeated and the civil defense divisions of our space colonies are being overrun. We must evacuate.”

    Sadly, soberly, the young monarch replies to her loyal general, “This is the second time our nation’s finest have been defeated by its enemies. Our people are Newtypes, the chosen people of humanity’s future. Why can our people not triumph against the Earth-dwellers whose souls are bound by gravity?”

    A moment of somber silence ensues. Resolved to spare her people the ravages of prolonged war, Princess Minerva turns to the military leaders under her command, “Issue the following declaration to all commanders of the Earth Federation Forces and AEUG immediately: Princess Minerva Zabi of the Archduchy of Zeon requests an immediate cessation of all hostilities. The House of Zabi is prepared to negotiate a peaceful resolution to the current conflict with the people of Earth and the spacenoids of AEUG."

    General Damascus, a large, violent man, growls in protest, “Your highness, I beg you to reconsider! We must not surrender to those Earthbound tyrants! We must remain true to the cause of Zeon to the very end!”

    Princess Minerva whirls angrily on General Damascus, “I am the leader of my people, General Damascus, and I have a responsibility to preserve their lives and welfare. Our military is broken. If we continue hostilities, more of my people will die!”

    General Miguel, a calmer and more levelheaded man than his comrade Damascus, speaks out, “You heard her highness’ command. Obey immediately, or face royal court martial!”

    Angrily, Damascus salutes and departs to carry out his orders. The remaining Zeon officers other than General Miguel scramble to execute the princess’ orders as well.

    Dory turns to Princess Minerva, “Your highness, you’re certain that you’ve made the correct decision?”

    The princess looks at Dory sadly, “Even you’re questioning me now?”

    Dory reddens, “My apologies, your highness. I wouldn’t dare.”

    Princess Minerva looks sadly upon her loyal domestic, “For all of our sakes, I pray that I’ve chosen wisely.”

    Suddenly, the ground begins to shake and the walls of the palace begin to crumble. The entire roof of the palace is then lifted off by an AEUG mobile suit. The piece of falling debris knocks Dory unconscious.

    The dust settles to reveal a crimson RMS-099 Rick Dias mobile suit towering over the ruins of the royal court. The cockpit of mecha opens, and an AEUG officer in a crimson normalsuit leaps out.

    Princess Minerva looks up from the ground, where General Miguel has shielded the princess with his body (Miguel is unhurt). Minerva’s eyes light up in recognition and disbelief, “Colonel Char!”


    Colonel Char Aznable as he appeared in U.C. 0087


    Indeed, the officer who emerged from the Rick Dias mobile suit is none other than the infamous Colonel Char Aznable, the “Red Comet” of the Zeon forces during the One Year War of U.C. 0079. Later taking the identity of Captain Quattro Bageena of AEUG, Char has been missing in action and presumed dead for the past year following the final battle of the Gryps Conflict.

    General Miguel recognizes Char as well, “Char Aznable,” Miguel snarls, “Traitor! You were supposed to be dead! What is your purpose for coming here now?”

    Char does not answer Miguel. Instead, with one quick maneuver, Char moves past Miguel and scoops up little Princess Minerva into his arms.

    Miguel points his sidearm at Char, but will not fire as long as Char holds Princess Minerva. Royal guards finally make their way into the collapsed throne room, but it is too late. Char has already boarded the Rick Dias with Minerva and blasted away from the ruins of the palace.


    Colonel Char's RMS-099 Rick Dias mobile suit, painted in his custom red color.


    A few remaining Zeon civil defense MS-14 Gelgoog and MS-09R Rick Dom mobile suits pursue Char’s Rick Dias, but Miguel knows that they will never capture the Red Comet.

    Episode 1 to be continued…

  4. #4
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    Default Episode 1 continued

    The camera gives us an awesome view of Side 7’s Green Noah space colony. As previously established in MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM and MOBILE SUIT ZETA GUNDAM, Green Noah is the site of the Earth Federation Forces’ most important space-based military complexes. This is evident as we see a number of RGM-95 GM IV and RGM-99 Jegan II mobile suits sortie in and out of the space colony on patrol duty.

    A legend appears on screen informing us that the year is now U.C. 0097. Eight years have passed since the final sighting of Princess Minerva Zabi of the Archduchy of Zeon.

    Today is graduation day at the Earth Federation Forces military academy. Of the thousands of young men and women who enlisted in the academy for three years of intense, grueling physical and mental training, three hundred are gathered in front of Reville Hall today to receive their commissions as officers in the Earth Federation Forces.

    General Bright Noah, the Federation’s most decorated war hero of the past two decades, who was captain of the White Base during the One Year War, the Ahrgama during the Gryps Conflict and the First Neo Zeon War, and the leader of the Lond Bell Task Force during the Second Neo Zeon War , is issuing the graduates their commission diplomas and extending his congratulations.

    After General Noah shakes hands with a 2Lt. Rory Hutchinson and a 2Lt. Lana Mugali, the highest ranking officer in the Earth Federation Forces summons another graduate, 2Lt. Athena Ibaz.


    2Lt. Athena Ibaz (formerly Princess Minerva Zabi), aged 18 (U.C. 0097)


    2Lt. Athena Ibaz, aged eighteen, is an exceptionally attractive young woman. With reddish blonde hair, long legs, and a regal, dignified bearing that belies her youth, 2Lt. Ibaz’s appearance to accept her commission from General Noah draws a chorus of cheers from her fellow graduates and seniors officers. Athena is graduating at the top of her class – of every class in the history of the Federation’s military academy! She has excelled in all phases of the academy’s officer training program, and promises to be an exceptional officer for the Earth Federation Forces. Moreover, Athena is at the top of the list of twenty-six exceptional graduates who have earned positions into the Federal Forces’ newly organized elite Special Operations Force. Athena has been assigned to the Centurion Team, under the command of One Year War veteran Captain Rick Tinne.

    Later that evening, a lavish grand ball is held within Reville Hall to celebrate the achievements of the graduates and the launching of the Special Operations Forces. Athena, resplendent in her Federation officer’s dress uniform, is approached by Colonel Peter Cairlay, a tall, thin, and somewhat sinister-looking man who is the Director of the Special Operations Force.

    Col. Cairlay and Athena exchange a few pleasantries about how they look forward to working together. Suddenly, an aide approaches Col. Cairlay and whispers something into the colonel’s ear. Cairlay’s face pales in horror, and he quickly excuses himself from Athena’s company and rushes towards General Noah’s office. Athena looks at the departing Cairlay in a disturbed manner; something serious had obviously come up.

    There is a knock on the door of General Noah’s office. Col. Cairlay salutes and enters. The colonel finds General Noah sitting at his desk, rubbing his beard nervously. Cairlay can tell from the look on the general’s face that the situation is extraordinarily grim.


    General Bright Noah as he appeared during the Gryps Conflict of U.C. 0087, ten years prior to the events in PRELUDE 0099.


    “Sir?” ventures Cairlay after a moment of tense silence.

    General Noah’s gaze is withering in its intensity as he finally addresses the colonel, “Colonel Cairlay, approximately one hour ago, a task force of five unfriendly mobile suits raided the Anaheim Weapons Development Plant near Anman City and captured the Project G-100.”

    Cairlay responds with a deep sigh, “Any leads, sir?”

    General Noah nods grimly, “One of our GM pilots managed to shoot down one of the enemy mobile suits: it was an AMS-119 Geara Doga. Intelligence personnel have confirmed that the pilot of the mecha was an agent of the Independent Spacenoid Republic Liberation Army.”


    An AMS-119 Geara Doga mobile suit, first used by the Neo Zeon forces in U.C. 0093. A limited number of these mobile suits are now deployed by the I.S.R.L.A.


    Colonel Cairlay considers the information the general has revealed to him. The Independent Spacenoid Republic is an underground society of self-proclaimed freedom fighters whose objective is the restoration of the long obsolete Zeon Republic of Side 3. the I.S.R. was founded in U.C. 0094, the year after Char Aznable’s failed attempt to create nuclear winter on Earth by dropping Axis Fortress on the planet, by Artasia Som Daikun.


    Artasia Som Daikun, also known as Sayla Mass, the leader of the Independent Spacenoid Republic movement.



    Zeon Zum Daikun, founder of the Zeon Republic and father of Char Aznable and Sayla Mass


    Artasia Som Daikun, aged thirty-five, is the daughter of the late spacenoid pioneer and visionary Zeon Zum Daikun, founder and first Prime Minister of the Zeon Republic. Artasia’s brother Casval Rem Daikun was the man who later became known as Char Aznable. During the One Year War, Artasia, under the name of Sayla Mass, actually served under then 1Lt. Bright Noah aboard the White Base. Sayla distinguished herself as a skilled and brave fighter and mobile suit pilot for the Federation, at times serving as substitute pilot in lieu of the famous Federation war hero Amuro Ray as the pilot of the original RX-78 Gundam. Sayla retired from the Federation military after the conclusion of the war, and after a rocky and ultimately failed relationship with Amuro Ray, she had completed her medical studies and spent the intervening years as one of the world’s finest physicians. Sayla reclaimed her birth name of Artasia Daikun after the apparent deaths of both her brother Char and her onetime lover Amuro at the end of the Second Neo Zeon War in U.C. 0093. Sickened by decades of war seemingly without end, Artasia organized the I.S.R. in a bid to free the space colonies once and for all.

    The I.S.R. rejects the violent imperialism of the Zabi Family’s Archduchy of Zeon, but is committed to the liberation of Side 3 and all space colonies whose people desire to be free of the Earth Federation Government’s hegemony. The Federation regards the I.S.R.L.A. as terrorists.

    General Noah tells Colonel Cairlay, “Colonel, I believe we should summon the services of the Special Operations Forces.”

    Episode 1 to be continued…

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    Default Episode 1 continued

    Tactical Information Center, Green Noah Base: the 26 commanding officers of the Special Operations Forces team (A-Z) meet with Colonel Cairlay and General Manron Blackhead (Commander of Federal Space Forces) to discuss the current crisis.

    General Blackhead opens the conference by asking the officers, “Ladies and gentleman, how much does each of you know about the Project G-100?”

    Captain Donna Rever, leader of Tycho Team, answers, “Sir, we are all aware that the Project G-100 refers to a new Gundam mobile suit prototype that Anaheim Weapons R&D has been developing for the past five years…but no one outside of Federal High Command’s inner circle knows any details about the project.”

    General Blackhead nods, “Yes. Project G-100 was initiated at the same time that the idea of creating the Special Operations Forces was proposed. It was to be the testbed for a new generation series of Gundam mobile suits suited for extraordinary operations the Special Forces would need to perform. The prototype G-100 was stolen, last night, ladies and gentlemen, by ISRLA terrorists."

    There is a collective gasp among the Special Forces officers. The loss of the Project G-100 represents a grave security breach that could threaten the security of Earth and the Federation’s space colonies. The Federal Forces’ newest and most powerful WMD is in the hands of terrorists.

    Captain Koichi Sato, the leader of Victory Team, speaks next, “Sir, we’re prepared to retrieve the prototype.”

    Colonel Cairlay gestures for silence, and stares hard at the officers as he says, “People, you understand, or at least should understand, this situation as well as I do. If a large number of spacenoid civilians are killed, injured, or suffer property loss in a Federal Forces military operation against the ISRLA, anti-Federation sentiment will intensify throughout the colonies. It’s already well known that the ISRLA has accumulated such overwhelming support at Side 3 that both the Federal Deliberative Assembly and the Federal High Command are considering it politically advisable to withdraw the occupation forces we’ve stationed there since 0089. Current intelligence indicates that ISRLA activities have spread to Side 5, Side 6, and Anman City. Blatant use of Federal military force against spacenoid civilians might galvanize all Cislunar colonies into rebellion against the Earth Federation Government. The last thing we need is another goddamn civil war with our own space colonies.”

    Captain Vladmir Arkov of Mercury Team asks, “Then what are our orders, sir?”

    Cairlay lights a cigar, and blows out a ring of smoke before replying, “Captain Tinne?”

    Captain Rick Tinne rises to his feet, “Sir!”

    Cairlay fixes his eerie gaze on Tinne, handing him a Datachip, “Captain, this Datachip contains all relevant information that Federal Intelligence has been able to accumulate on Chad Barron, a key man in the ISRLA. If anyone knows anything about the location of the G-100 prototype, it would be him. The Centurion Team’s orders are to track down Barron and bring him in for interrogation.”

    A few hours later, Captain Tinne and Athena are playing billiards in the C-Team’s recreation room. Actually, it would be more accurate to say that Captain Tinne has been watching Athena play billiards; she has sunk so many consecutive balls into the table’s pockets that the captain’s cue stick hasn’t touched the table yet in an hour.

    As Athena sinks yet another ball into a pocket, Captain Tinne inserts the Datachip given to him by Colonel Cairlay into his Datapad, a nearly ubiquitous handheld personal computer device.

    Captain Tinne reads aloud the data on the viewscreen for his executive officer’s benefit, “Chad Barron. Age 45. Born on Side 3. Earned a doctorate degree from Zum University in Artificial Habitat Facilities Engineering in U.C. 0078. Served as a military specialist in the Army of the Archduchy of Zeon during the One Year War. During the 0080s, served as a military specialist for AEUG. Became Chief Foreman of Side 3’s main nuclear fusion plant in 0090, and promoted to Director in 0095. Also became a founding member of ISR with Dr. Artasia Som Daikun and others, and soon worked his way into becoming one of the most important men in the ISRLA.”

    As Athena nonchalantly chalks her cue stick, she asks, “What’s your plan, sir?”

    Captain Tinne sighs, “Well, going in guns blazing with mobile suits is definitely out of the question. Making the Federal Forces look like a gang of armored fascist thugs is exactly what the ISR wants.”

    Athena sinks a red ball into a side pocket and says, “The ISRLA has always had the political upper hand against the Federation because it’s successfully capitalized on the Earth government’s greatest fear – spacenoid rebellion.”

    Tinne switches off his miniprocessor and prompts, “Then in response, we should…?”

    Athena picks it up, “In response, we should do likewise – exploit the ISRLA’s greatest fear against them.”

    Athena sinks the eight ball in the corner pocket with a dreadful finality.


    Episode 1 to be continued…

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    Default Episode 1: Conclusion

    Twelve hours later, the Centurion Team is at Side 3, Bunch 1: site of Zum City, the former capital of both the Zeon Republic and the Archduchy of Zeon. The once opulent capital city is now in shambles, occupied by a small force of Federal soldiers and MS pilots.

    Zum City is now also the nominal “home” of the Independent Spacenoid Republic movement. These spacenoid freedom fighters (“terrorists” from the Federation’s perspective) pass themselves off as Zum City’s regular citizenry which, in fact, most of them are. The ISRLA launches constant clandestine, guerilla style assaults against the Federal Forces.

    Around the ruins of the old Zeon Republic’s Parliament Building, an angry crowd of demonstrators numbering into the tens of thousands carry signs and shout slogans such as, “Free Zeon!” “End Earth’s Injustice Towards Spacenoids!” “Fight Earthist Oppression!” “Vive Contolism!” etc. Leading this assembly of protestors is the familiar Dr. Artasia Som Daikun, the woman once known as Sayla Mass.

    The camera pans away from the Zeon Parliament Building to the colony’s main nuclear fusion power plant. Chad Barron is the Director of Colony Energy Resources (and secretly, point man for the ISRLA’s intelligence personnel). The main nuclear fusion plant for Zum City is not must a colony utilities facility; it is also a gathering place for members of the ISRLA. Here, anti-Federation rebels gather to discuss their plans, all done under the shadow of industrial work that maintains the colony’s power supply. Hydrosuits (non combat mobile suits) enter and exit the plant en rout to various maintenance work around the about the colony.

    Chad Barron, a thin, sinister looking man with a pencil moustache and greasy hair, is quietly discussing something with several other ISRLA members/ plant maintenance workers. Brownstone, an aide of Barron’s, alerts him that Captain Rick Tinne and 2 Lt. Athena Ibaz of the Earth Federation Forces have come with a military warrant to investigate the power plant for suspected ISRLA activity.

    Barron pales at the news. He had not anticipated the Federation discovering this secret stronghold, at least not so soon. He tells Brownstone, “Bring them here, but we must make sure they don’t leave here alive to compromise us.”

    Brownstone invites Captain Tinne and Athena to enter the facility’s main generator chamber. Barron greets the two Federal Forces officers with false cordiality.

    Captain Tinne says gravely, “We’re sorry to interrupt your work, Mr. Barron. We understand that supplying a space colony with power is a serious task that requires all of your time and attention, but our business here won’t take long. Mr. Barron, thirty-six hours ago, ISRLA terrorists appropriated a piece of vital military property from Anaheim Weapons R&D. Our intelligence personnel indicated that Side 3 was a possible point of egress for the ISRLA, so we would like to…”

    Barron cuts him off, “I understand, Captain. Very well, you have permission to search the premises.

    Captain Tinne bows to Barron gallantly, “Thank you, sir. Lt. Ibaz?”

    The captain and Athena begin an investigation of the grounds of the power plant, attentive for any indication of ISRLA activity. Athena spots a calculator-sized device on a nearby work station and hands it to Tinne.

    Captain Tinne examines the device, then shows it to Barron, “Mr. Barron, is it your facility’s standard practice to use MS combat data processors as part of its equipment?”

    Standing to one side, Athena notices a cargo bay door nearby. Reaching out with her mind, Athena gets a vague impression of what lies beyond the metal door.

    Athena makes a decision in that instant. This is my opportunity. Time to act.

    Athena subtly approaches Captain Tinne and quietly indicates to him the door that she had spotted. The captain, responding to his junior executive officer’s prompting, approaches the door for a closer inspection.

    The doors rip open with alarming suddenness! A hydrosuit blasts out and impales Captain Tinne with one of its extended utility arms.

    The commanding officer of the Centurion Team confirmed dead, the HS swings around to finish Athena with a swipe of its metallic claw.

    With a quick, deft, acrobatic maneuver, Athena leaps clear of the robotic talon, draws her sidearm, and fires a shot into the HS’s cockpit canopy, striking its operator between the eyes. Athena swiftly opens the HS’s shattered canopy, jettisons the body of its slain operator, and climbs into the cockpit seat.

    Athena pulls the throttle of the HS, sending it careening into several ISRLA rebels who appeared with firearms after hearing the noise and commotion. Athena then sets the HS down next to the main fusion generator unit of the colony and puts the mecha’s own fusion battery into overdrive.

    Brownstone is about to fire a shot from his assault rifle at the HS when Barron knocks the weapon from his hands, “Brownstone, don’t! That woman has the HS in overdrive! If you fire at it, it will start a chain reaction explosion that would wipe out this entire colony!”

    Horrified, the rebels point their weapons away from the pirated HS.

    “Thirty seconds to critical mass,” an electronically synthesized voice announces from the HS.

    Athena points her sidearm at Barron, “Mr. Barron, I want to know the location of Project G-100 immediately.”

    Barron stares at the overheating HS in horror. Sweat covers the man’s skin, and his throat is as parched as the Sahara in summer, “You heartless b*tch! Take that thing off overdrive now! If it explodes, over five million people will die!”

    Athena looks at Barron coldly, “The location of the prototype…?”

    The synthesized voice of the HS’s computer continues its doomsday countdown, “Ten seconds to critical mass. Nine. Eight. Seven. Six. Five…”

    Barron’s eyes bulge in terror, and he shouts hoarsely, “Ferrario! Ferrario’s got it at Industria Colony!”

    Athena brings her fist down quickly on the control that cancels the HS’s overdrive mode. At that precise moment, armed Centurion Team personnel enter the chamber and begin to disarm the ISRLA rebels.

    Pressing the muzzle of her pistol against Barron’s forehead, Athena further inquires, “Vincent Ferrario? The high-tech weapons black marketer?”

    Barron looks away bitterly, confirming Athena’s suspicion.

    Athena orders the C-Team to place Barron and his cohorts under arrest.

    Athena turns to the gutted, bleeding corpse of Captain Rick Tinne, kneels before it, and solemnly closes the late Centurion Team commander’s eyes.

    The young members of the C-Team choke back tears. They had hardly gotten to know their commanding officer, and now he is dead.

    Master Sergeant Karim Abdul Al-Said turns expectantly towards Athena, “Lieutenant? Ma’am, you’re in charge now.”

    Athena nods grimly, pulls out a handkerchief that she usually lets hang stylishly from the front breast pocket of her uniform jacket, and wipes her hands with it.

    Repocketing the handkerchief, Athena tells Sgt. Al-Said, “Bring these rebels back to headquarters for interrogation, sergeant.”

    The sergeant raises an eyebrow, “Will you be coming with us, ma’am?”

    Athena shakes her head, “I’m leaving right away for Industria Colony.”

    Final scene: Athena dons a Federal Forces’ combat pilot normalsuit and boards an FF-X99 Core Fighter. The combat spacecraft blasts towards Industria Colony, its engine thrusters leaving behind a dramatic flash as it disappears into the field of stars.

    End of Episode 1

    Next…Episode 2: Jolie

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    Default Episode 2: JOLIE

    EPISODE 2: JOLIE

    Industria Colony is the 4th Bunch of Side 1. As its name suggests, Industria Colony was once a booming industrial center where raw materials from Earth or the moon were processed into the machinery that enabled space colonies to function. Since the completion of Side 1 decades ago, however, Industria Colony has fallen victim to neglect and disuse as industrial production moved to newer facilities.

    Its boom years long behind it, Industria has become a sort of collecting point for material and human refuse. The material refuse includes broken, obsolete MS, spaceships, space colony machinery, etc. The human refuse includes many of the thugs, mercenaries, war criminals, and orphaned children that haven spawned by twenty years of devastating war. It’s a sad, mean, and desolate place. Life is marginal and tough at Industria.

    2Lt. Athena Ibaz, now acting commander of the Centurion Team, is operating incognito. Instead of her elegant Federal Forces uniform, Athena is dressed in rather soiled-looking civilian clothes. It is crucial that Vincent Ferrario and his people do not become aware of Athena’s identity or purpose.

    Athena eyes the desolate streets of Industria Town warily. No sign of Ferrario or his mecha mercenaries, but there are plenty of Industria’s average citizens: the arms merchants, pimps, hookers, drug dealers, gangsters, etc.

    After walking through the streets for a while, Athena encounters something she hasn’t sensed in a long time…a powerful pressure against her brain. Athena is a Newtype, and she is sensitive to the presence of other Newtypes. Now, on the lonely, dead end streets of Industria Colony, Athena feels the pressure of a Newtype presence more intense than she has ever sensed before – even greater than Char Aznable, Haman Khan, or Judau Ashta.

    Athena follows the pressure to its source – a lamp post against which leans a girl. The girl is a teenager, no more than fifteen years old at most. Athena notices that the girl is of Asian descent, with unruly, long black hair that reaches halfway down her back. Athena notices the girl’s scruffy clothing – torn jeans, leather jacket, grimy t-shirt, leather boots, and an old, Gryps Conflict era Earth Federation Forces officer’s cap worn backwards on her head.

    Athena also notices the smirking irreverence expressed in the girl’s body language. Most of all, however, Athena notices how extraordinarily…pretty the girl is despite her battered clothing and disheveled appearance. The girl is not very tall, perhaps five foot one in height. She does, however, have a glamour model’s long, graceful legs and petite, trim figure. The skin on the girl’s angelic babyface is smooth as creamy silk, with wide, expressive eyes and a delicate-looking mouth.


    Fifteen-year old Jolie Minh. Newtype and child of the streets.

    Author’s Note: the appearance of the character Jolie Minh was based on Hong Kong television actress Joey Meng Yee Man as she appeared in the early 1990s. In fact, the name “Jolie Minh” was given to the character as an homage to her real-life inspiration. Jolie Minh could be thought of as an anime version of Joey Meng.

    Athena regards the girl with a mixture of admiration and envy. She’s beautiful, Athena reflects. Many a man’s daydream, I suppose. Athena herself is an extraordinarily attractive young woman, beautiful as a former royal princess should be, and she had often needed to fend off the attention of young male officer trainees at the academy. This girl, however, makes Athena feel average-looking.

    Athena then remembers what drew her to the girl in the first place, What an incredibly powerful Newtype this girl is! Not even Char or Haman emanated this magnitude of power.

    Athena forces herself to refocus her attention on the task at hand. Although the Newtype girl is fascinating, Athena cannot afford to be distracted. She had to find Ferrario and the stolen prototype immediately. Athena walks by the girl without looking at her again.

    Ten seconds later, Athena has a vague sensation that something is wrong. She feels the back pocket of her trousers. Her wallet is missing! Athena turns around to find the young girl running away into an alley. Athena gives pursuit.

    Athena chases the girl down several back alleys. She comes to a startled halt when she sees the girl suddenly standing calmly in front of her.

    In the girl’s right hand is Athena’s wallet.

    “All right, Miss,” Athena warns, “you’d better give that back to me right now.”

    The girl simply smiles.

    Athena lunges at the girl…but the girl is gone!

    Athena hears mocking laughter, and finds the girl squatting on top of a trash can behind her.

    How did she get back there?! Athena wonders.

    Angry now, Athena aims a punch for the girl’s face. The punch connects, but not with the girl’s face. An instant before impact, the girl executes a graceful, acrobatic backflip, at the same time lifting the trash can lid she had been squatting on and bringing it up like a medieval knight’s shield.

    Athena’s knuckles collide painfully with the trash can lid, causing her to yelp in pain.

    By now, the pretty Asian girl is laughing hysterically. Athena, livid, tries an open handed karate blow, but is flipped over onto her back in one lightning quick move by the girl. From her position on the ground, Athena tries a sweepkick to trip the girl. This too fails, as the girl easily leaps to avoid Athena’s sweeping leg.

    Athena stands up, thoroughly embarrassed and frustrated now. She launches a number of kung-fu strikes at the girl. The girl effortlessly dodges or blocks all of Athena’s blows, and retaliates with a series of blindingly fast blows of her own, the likes of which Athena has never seen before.

    The girl finishes it with a powerful kick to Athena’s midsection, knocking the breath out of the new Centurion Team leader.

    Athena lies on floor – dazed, stunned, and humiliated. She has had three years of combat training in the Federal Military Academy. She has mastered a half dozen different martial arts to expert level. She is a certified Special Operations Forces officer, the deadliest class of soldier to be found anywhere. But this dainty-looking Asian girl had made Athena look like rank amateur!

    As Athena marvels at the girl’s unbelievable agility and combat prowess, the girl speaks for the first time, “You actually fight really good, Red. But I’m Jolie Minh, and I’m the best there ever was!”

    The girl who called herself Jolie smiles at Athena, pockets the wallet, and turns to leave.

    Athena reaches out for something to grab onto for support. She grasps something that feels like a net. Athena looks up and grins wickedly; she gives the net a terrific tug.

    Nets are suspended between the dilapidated high-rise structures of Industria Colony to catch any debris that might be unscrupulously dropped from the upper levels. It is one of these that Athena pulls down on Jolie.

    The net descends on Jolie. In spite of her cat-quick reflexes, her gymnastic agility, and her amazing fighting skills, Jolie can’t fight her way out of the huge net descending around her.

    Athena takes advantage of Jolie’s momentary immobilization to grab onto the girl, “Give me my wallet back!”

    As Athena struggles with Jolie, she suddenly hears the sound of approaching footsteps. Athena looks up and finds herself staring at the sinister, sunglass-wearing visage of Vincent Ferrario, the infamous arms dealer. Ferrario points a thin, but potent pistol at the two young women.

    Episode 2 to be continued…

  8. #8

  9. #9
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    Default Episode 2 Continued

    Almost instinctively, Athena shoves Jolie (who is still snared in the net) down a utility chute built into the outside wall of the nearby building. Athena immediately dives down the chute herself after shoving Jolie in.

    Ferrario fires a few rounds down into the chute, wondering if he had stricken his quarry.

    Down in the cellar that the chute leads into, Athena helps Jolie out of the net. Every few seconds, bullets rain down around them.

    Jolie glares at Athena, “What the hell have you gotten us into, Red?” Jolie demands, referring to Athena’s reddish hair.

    Athena pulls Jolie aside as a few more shots rain down, “Listen, Jolie, isn’t it? My name’s Athena Ibaz. I know I don’t look like it right now, but I’m an officer with the Earth Federation Forces. That man trying to kill us up there is a mercenary working for the I.S.R.L.A., and he’s got a piece of our military property. I’ve got to force him to turn it over, but I need your help.”

    Jolie is a little overwhelmed by what Athena has told her, “Well…”

    “Well, what?!” Athena demands urgently as the bullets explode around them again.

    Jolie nods, and kicks open a wooden board against a wall of the cellar, revealing the entrance to another utility passage, wide enough to accommodate a slim young woman if she were to crawl in on her hands and knees.

    Jolie tells Athena, “This leads to the basement of the building across the alley. I can crawl over, climb up, and sneak up on our boogeyman from behind, OK?”

    Athena smiles, “Go for it!”

    Jolie disappears into the chute. When she reaches the basement of the other building, she climbs up yet another utility chute back into the alley.

    Jolie grins as she spots Ferrario, his back turned to her, angrily firing his gun into the chute that Jolie and Athena had first disappeared into.

    Ferrario feels a sudden light tapping on his shoulder, and turns around to confront the interloper. He is only half turned around when he feels his head snap back and his pistol flying from his hand. He never saw the terrific kick that caught him in the jaw, knocking out several teeth. Nor did Ferrario see Jolie catch his pistol as it fell.

    In two seconds, Jolie has Ferrario on the ground, and puts the man’s pistol to his head.

    At that very same moment, Athena emerges from the delivery chute. Dusting herself off, Athena grins at Jolie, “That was very good.”

    Jolie shrugs with self-satisfaction.

    Athena turns to Ferrario, pulling on the man’s jacket lapels, “Now, Ferrario. Where is the G-100 prototype?”

    Jolie cocks the pistol and presses it harder against the arms dealer’s head.

    “A-all right, don’t shoot me! I’ll lead you to it!” the man replies, naked terror in his eyes.

    Ferrario leads them farther down the alley. After a five-minute walk, they are in a warehouse district. Ferrario uses a secret code number to gain entry into one of the many, anonymous and nondescript warehouse buildings that are common to Industria City. The I.S.R.L.A. confederate guides the two young women to an enormous service elevator, in which they descend some one hundred meters into the colony’s bowels.

    When the elevator doors open, Athena and Jolie both gasp in surprise as they realize that they have arrived in a well-maintained MS maintenance dock. Nobody would have suspected that such a facility could have existed in rundown and forgotten Industria Colony!

    Out of a corner of her eye, Athena at last spots it: a massive structure, about twenty meters tall, covered by an enormous canvas. The structure’s shape is vaguely humanoid, making it obvious that it is a mobile suit.

    The prototype! Athena realizes.



    RX-780 Gundam 100



    Naturally, it’s not going to be that easy, Athena also acknowledges as she sees six men armed with carbines approaching them.

    Jolie shoots at one of the men, not striking him, but destroying his weapon. The remaining five take aim to shoot the girl and her Federal Forces ally.

    “Wait!” Athena says, “you’ve got the prototype, but it won’t be useful to you unless you have the authentication code to activate its combat systems.”

    Ferrario, his menacing demeanor having returned now that he has Athena and Jolie under his men’s guns, says, “You have this code, I presume?”

    Athena nods, “I’ll activate the prototype for you…it requires a bioscan by the prototype’s security AI. But you have to let the girl go. She’s just a civilian. She isn’t involved in this. There’s no reason for you to harm her.”

    Jolie turns to Athena with a look of profound gratitude…so long has it been since she’s known anybody who has cared about her in such a manner. There is something about the young, beautiful Earth Federation Forces officer that Jolie cannot help believing in.

    Ferrario replies sinisterly, “That depends on whether or not you produce the desired results, Lieutenant. Go!”

    Ferrario’s men usher Athena and Jolie to a crane mechanism that brings them to the cockpit hatch, which the ISRLA men have been trying for days, to no avail, to breach.

    Athena opens a side panel on the cockpit gate, typing in a code. The Gundam-100’s synthesized, “masculine” voice interface says, “Gundam-100 Security System Online. Identify yourself.”

    “Second Lieutenant Athena Ibaz,” Athena says, “Serial Number G1179587888.”

    The AI scans Athena’s physiology, confirming positive ID as Earth Federation Forces G1179587888

    “Positive identification,” the AI says, “Gundam-100 systems on combat standby mode. Ready for your orders, Lieutenant Ibaz.”

    “Code R319,” Athena says.

    BOOOOOOM!!!!!!

    Code R319, test firing of left auxiliary thrust nozzle…not enough to really move a mobile suit on its own, but enough to create one hell of a fire and noise show.

    Just the momentary distraction Athena and Jolie need.

    The ISRLA guardsmen, caught off guard by the sudden noise and light, are thrown off balance.

    Jolie reacts with catlike swiftness. She punches out the guard standing nearest her with a solid jab that breaks the man’s jaw. She catches the man’s falling carbine, which she uses to butt a second man off the crane. Jolie goes down on one knee, firing the carbine in the direction of Ferrario and the remaining ISRLA guardsmen, who flee from the teenager’s rapid fire.

    Meanwhile, Athena has boarded the Gundam-100, taking the shotgun seat from which she brings the combat systems online.

    Jolie quickly joins her in the cockpit, sealing the hatch and taking the pilot’s seat.

    “What are you doing?” Athena demands, pulling on one of the two normalization helmets provided in the cockpit and lowering its visor.

    “I can pilot this machine of yours,” Jolie says, pulling on the other helmet, also lowering its visor, “You just push the buttons to keep the weapons coming back there.”

    Athena opens her mouth to protest, but thinks better of it as she sees two mobile suits entering the chamber on the forward view screen.

    Just my luck to be caught in here with an Amuro Ray wannabe, Athena thinks to herself.

    The deck of the MS hangar begins to vibrate with the distinctively cacophonous clodding of metallic MS feet. A pair of twenty-meter tall AMS-119 Geara Doga mobile suits suddenly appear from an enormous service corridor.

    The RX-780 Gundam 100 comes to life for the first time. It is an awesome-looking mecha: a worthy descendent of the RX-78 line of Gundam mobile suits – the culmination of nearly twenty years of development and refinement. The cutting edge of the Earth Federation Forces’ mobile suit research.

    Jolie presses forward on the control stick. The Gundam-100 lurches forward slowly, unsteadily.

    "Why's it losing power?!" Jolie complains.

    Athena explains as she continues to bring the mobile suit's various combat operation systems online, "I initiated the energy buildup sequence for startup, but the main fusion engine needs an additional twenty seconds to attain the level required for combat mode. Energy level is at sixty-five percent. Now initiating secondary drive engine...energy level accelerating."

    "How long is it gonna take?! Jolie demands wildly, "They're almost on us!"

    Athena says serenely, "Just stay calm. Energy level at eighty-five percent and rising."

    Jolie can feel the throb of the Gundam's accelerating engine underneath her cockpit seat. Such power!

    The Geara Dogas advance menacingly towards the still unsteady Gundam-100.

    Jolie’s voice booms through the Gundam 100’s external amplifiers, “Get your asses out of those stinking mechs now, or I’ll turn you into scrap!”

    One of the Geara Dogas levels its rifle cannon at the Gundam 100, only to have its weapon kicked away by the Gundam’s armored right leg. The Gundam 100 catches the Geara Doga’s falling weapon in its own metalshod hand.

    The second Doga attempts to join the fray, but is clobbered by the butt of the Gundam 100’s appropriated beam rifle.

    While the two ISRLA mobile suits are still reeling from the blows they sustained, Jolie turns to Athena and says, “I’m kinda new at this, so walk me through it, ‘K?”

    Athena replies with a phrase that to Jolie, sounds more mellifluous than a Viennese waltz, “Weapons systems to combat mode.”

    “Sword! Sword!” Jolie exclaims, as she eyes the two enemy mobile suits bearing down on the Gundam 100 with their beam sabers drawn, “Gimme the f*cking sword, Red!”

    Athena says calmly, “Beam saber engaged.”

    Jolie pulls out the Gundam 100’s beam saber and defly decapitates both enemy mecha with a singular, slashing motion that suggests some ancient swordfighting technique.

    The two enemy mobile suits fall to the metal deck of the warehouse with a reverberating klong, helpless to do any more harm.

    Athena looks at the view screen, “More targets outside the colony…four more mobile suits. Zakus, according to the target database.”

    “Rockets ready to go on this thing?” Jolie asks.

    Athena has just switched the main engines on, “Primary and secondary thrusters engaged.”

    “Go!” Jolie replies, pressing the control stick forward.

    The Gundam-100 bursts forth from the warehouse, through the colony’s external wall, into space.

    “Guns!” Jolie demands, “I need guns, Red!”

    “The name is ‘Athena,’” the new leader of the Centurion Team replies, “Beam rifle engaged.”

    Jolie locks onto the first target, a Zaku, and triggers a single shot from the Gundam 100’s beam rifle that swiftly and completely annihilates the target.

    “Missile pods engaged,” Athena calls from her shotgun seat engineering station, “Targets acquired. You’ve got a lock-on.”

    Jolie triggers the fire button on the control stick, a torrent of missile fire, enough to destroy three dozen Zakus, rips forth from launch tubes mounted on the Gundam 100’s shoulders, hips, and legs, creating a hellacious series of powerful explosions that violently rock the entire nearby space colony of Industria.

    “My God,” Athena whispers breathlessly, awed by the Gundam-100's incredible power, so much more impressive than it seemed even during the test runs.

    “Yeah,” is all Jolie can manage, just as breathlessly, shaken by the carnage she has unleashed.

    Jolie directs the Gundam-100 back inside the Industria Colony, back to the warehouse where the mobile suit had been hidden.

    Vincent Ferrario and his men attempt to flee the scene aboard a land rover armed with a machine gun. Seeing the Gundam-100 looming over them, one of Ferrario’s men opens fire on the massive mechanical form with the land vehicle’s machine gun.

    The bullets rain ineffectively against the Gundam-100’s armored shell, leaving not so much as a nick.

    "Acquiring new target," Athena announces, focusing the targeting computer at the fleeing land rover, "Vulcan cannon engaged."

    Jolie makes a slashing gesture in front of her throat, "Gimme manual control."

    Athena looks doubtfully at Jolie for an instant, then disengages the targeting computer, "Manual targeting engaged."

    Jolie squeezes the trigger mechanism on the control joystick. The twin Vulcan cannon mounted on the Gundam 100's head spew forth thousands of rounds of gunfire, which spark all around the fleeing land rover, destroying the roadway in all directions around the vehicle, cutting off any possible avenue of egress.

    "Stop! Stop!" Ferrario pleads, covering his head with his hands.

    Jolie breathes, “So much for you, bogieman. I think the feddies are going to want to talk to you.”

    “Nicely done, Jolie,” Athena says, offering her hand to the pretty teenager.

    “Thanks,” Jolie says, grasping Athena’s hand, “Would have been different without you backing me. We make a good team, huh?”

    Yes, we do, Athena thinks to herself, as a new vision comes into her head.


    ************************************************** **************

    Three hours later, Ferrario and his accomplices are in the custody of the Federal Forces. Col. Cairlay has personally come to Industria to congratulate Athena on a job well done.

    As he shakes Athena’s hand, Cairlay says, “That was excellent work, Lt. Ibaz. I am, however, saddened to hear about Capt. Tinne.”

    Athena, back in her Federal Forces uniform, nods, “The captain died bravely in the line of duty, sir.” Quickly changing the subject, Athena adds, “Having seen the Gundam 100 in action, sir, I can understand its importance to our security.”

    Cairly nods in agreement, then adds, “Lieutenant, you are hereby officially assigned the position of acting commander of the Centurion Team. Provide me a full report by 0700 tomorrow morning.”

    “Yes, sir,” Athena exchanges salutes with the colonel. The senior officer departs to see to other urgent business.

    Athena looks around for Jolie, but the teenaged girl of stunning looks and even more stunning fighting skills is nowhere to be seen.

    Athena is highly impressed by Jolie’s abilities. Jolie is the most amazingly talented fighter that Athena has ever seen, and perhaps more importantly, Jolie’s reverberating Newtype powers were beyond anything Athena had ever sensed.

    She could be very useful, Athena reasoned to herself, having such a resource under my control could give me a great advantage. If I don’t exploit this advantage, others surely will.

    Athena drives a Federal Forces jeep from the spaceport of Industria back into the city, searching for the girl named Jolie Minh.

    Episode 2 to be continued…

  10. #10
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    Default Episode 2 Conclusion

    Athena once again steps into the alleyway where she had first encountered Jolie earlier that day. Industria’s computer-operated day/night regulator is now on “nighttime” mode, and the colony is dark. The alley is empty except for a few cats scouring the trash for meager scraps of food.

    “Jolie!” Athena calls out. “Jolie Minh, are you here? It’s Lt. Athena Ibaz. I want to talk to you!”

    Suddenly, a large debris net falls onto Athena, ensnaring her. Athena struggles to free herself.

    A lithe form leaps off a nearby ledge, executing a neat double somersault before landing gracefully in front of Athena.

    “Now we’re even, Lieutenant,” Jolie smirks at Athena, “What is it you want to talk to me about?”

    Athena replies with a smile, “Well, help me out of this net and I’ll be happy to tell you about it.”

    Jolie and Athena remove the net together, and then Jolie leads Athena into one of Industria colony’s many mecha salvage yards. Amid all the piles of techno-junk is a tiny, dilapidated sheet metal shack. This is Jolie’s “home.”

    Athena takes a look around and finds much of what she had expected: packing crates for crude chairs and tables, a sheet of old canvas as a makeshift bed. Various cans of outdated military rations, discarded junk food wrappers, half-smoked packs of cigarettes, etc.

    There are also a few items that Athena had not expected to see: operating manuals for mobile suits dating back to the One Year War, various small firearms, a few ammo clips, various makeshift daggers, a broken glass bottle or two, and assorted loot in the form of pocketwatches, wallets, fake jewelery, etc.

    Athena turns to Jolie, “How old are you, Jolie?”

    Jolie shrugs, “Fourteen, maybe fifteen. Who cares?”

    Athena puts forth another question, “How long have you been living like this?”

    Jolie shrugs again, “Couple of years, I don’t know. What’s with all these questions, anyway? Do you feddie army officers moonlight as social workers now or something?”

    Athena smiles, “I’d like to make you an offer. I’d like to invite you to join the Earth Federation Forces.”

    Jolie’s eyes widen, then she laughs, “Do I look like soldier material to you, Lieutenant? Thanks, but no thanks! I don’t wanna peel potatoes or clean out latrines or stuff like that!”

    Athena nods, “It’s up to you, but the Federal Forces do offer free food, free shelter, and an average annual income of…”

    Athena notices that Jolie is no longer paying attention. The girl’s expression is a mixture of sadness, loneliness, and anger.

    Athena, seeing that she is not reaching Jolie, sighs, “I guess I’ll be going, then.”

    Before Athena can get out the door, Jolie rises from the makeshift canvas on which she had been lying down, “Hey, ‘Thena! Wait!”

    The episode ends with Athena leading young Jolie to the spacedock, and the two board a shuttle for Green Noah Colony in Side 7. A legendary friendship and partnership is born.

    End of Episode 2

  11. #11
    Moderator Ken Cheng's Avatar
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    Default Episode 3: Origins

    EPISODE 3: ORIGINS

    Athena and Jolie arrive at Green Noah Colony in Side 7. It’s been years since Jolie has been anywhere other than the dead-end streets of Industria Colony. She is dazzled by the lights and activity of Green Noah Colony, so much brighter and more vibrant than Industria. The businesses look new and prosperous, servicing the millions of civilian and military occupants in the colony. There are senior citizens, kids, young adults, etc. It’s a shining, bustling modern metropolis, unlike the forgotten slum that Jolie had spent the past few years in.

    Athena keeps a close eye on Jolie, making sure she doesn’t shoplift any jewelry or pick the pocket of some unsuspecting civilian.

    Athena takes Jolie to the local recruiting office for the Earth Federation Forces. Jolie is enlisted as a Mobile Suit Space Corps Cadet, and is to be trained over a period of six months as an MS pilot for the Federal Forces.

    As Jolie does not need to report for initiation roll call for two days, Athena invites Jolie to dinner at a posh, upscale restaurant in Green Noah City. Athena orders a bottle of the restaurant’s finest red wine.

    The waiter, the manager, the restaurant owner, and the well-heeled patrons of the restaurant cast disapproving glances at the pretty, but scruffily-dressed Jolie Minh. Her lack of table manners doesn’t help matters either.

    None of this seems to bother Athena and Jolie as they get to know one another better. Athena pours Jolie another glass of wine, the teenager’s third…

    So I’m corrupting a youth, Athena thinks to herself, It’s just as well. In the months to come, Jolie’s going to be corrupted by things far worse than this wine.” Judging from Jolie’s response to the wine, this is definitely not the girl’s first taste of liquor.

    Athena fields a question that had been on her mind since she first met Jolie, “How did you end up at Industria Colony? You don’t strike me as being a native there.”

    Jolie puts down the glass of wine and looks downcast.

    Athena senses that she has touched a painful subject for the girl, “I’m sorry. If it’s too difficult to discuss…”

    Jolie shakes her head, her eyes moist with tears, “No, it’s OK. I actually do want to talk about it.”

    Athena waits silently, expectantly.

    Tears begin falling from Jolie’s eyes, running down her cheek as she begins, “I used to be an ordinary girl living an ordinary life with my family in the Quebec Colony, Side 5. Daddy, Mommy, my big brother Jean, and me. Daddy was an MS pilot for the civil defense forces and Mommy was a housewife. My brother and I went to school just like normal kids. Then, on my tenth birthday…”

    A flashback sequence of Jolie Minh’s childhood. The camera pans towards Quebec Colony in Side 5. A legend appears on the screen, “October 6, U.C. 0092.”

    Quebec Colony was founded by space colonists from Quebec, Canada on Earth. Consequently, the colony’s culture is very French in character. Many Vietnamese people, whose ancestors on Earth once lived under French rule in the 20th Century of the old Gregorian calendar, also live in the colony. It was here that Earth Federation Forces Civil Defense Corps MS pilot 1Lt. Dominic Minh and his wife, Lucie and their two children, Jean and Jolie lived.

    Breakfast time at the Minh home on October 6, U.C. 0092 was no different from any other morning. 1Lt. Minh read a report about some kind of tactical alert while drinking his morning coffee.

    Mrs. Minh looked at her husband worriedly, noting the somber expression on his face, “Is something wrong, honey? Are the Zeons going to attack the colonies again?’

    1Lt. Minh inhales deeply. Over the last few months, Side 5 had been under periodic attack by elements of the Phobos Division of the Neo Zeon forces. The Phobos Division was commanded by a young Zeon colonel named Alexander Miguel, the son of an aristocratic Zeon general named Carloman Miguel (previously seen in Episode 1). Colonel Alexander Miguel is infamous among the Federal Forces for his particularly cruel and vicious attacks against civilian space colonies. Already, Miguel’s forces have put a serious dent in Side 5’s civil defense network, and reinforcements from Earth have not been forthcoming.

    1Lt. Minh believed that all that would soon change. The report that 1Lt. Minh is reading indicates that the Federal Forces would send the Lond Bell Force to deal with the Phobos problem. The Lond Bell Force was commanded by the legendary Captain Amuro Ray, pilot of the original Gundam and hero of the One Year War, himself.

    The knowledge that the Lond Bell Force and Captain Amuro were on the way gave Dom Minh reason to be optimistic, so he reassured his wife, “Don’t worry, Lucie. Things will be fine. Federation HQ is sending Lond Bell to reinforce us. The Zeons won’t beat them. Let’s not frighten the kids, OK?”

    Lucie Minh nods, and changes the subject to something comparatively lighter, “You know, Dominic, Jolie was kept in detention at school again yesterday.”

    Dominic blinks somewhat dumbfoundedly at this wife, “Again? This is the third time in as many weeks. Let me guess: she’s been in another fight?”

    Lucie sighs, “Yes. Our little girl is too much like you. She’s got too much fight in her!”

    That makes Dominic laugh, “That’s daddy’s little girl!”

    Lucie asks, “Don’t you think we should show Jolie other ways of solving problems?”

    Dominic replies, “You’re worried she’ll get hurt? We both know that she can take care of herself very well.”

    “That’s not the point,” Lucie says, “I know Jolie has always won every fight she’s been in, but we shouldn’t raise our kids to be violent people.”

    “No, we shouldn’t,” Dominic agreed, “but we should also understand that our daughter’s heart is always in the right place. Every fight she’s gotten into at school was because she couldn’t stand watching some schoolyard bully picking on the weaker kids. You know how she hates that. I’m very proud of her. She’s got a hero’s heart.”

    “She does,” Lucie concurs, “but nevertheless…”

    Lucie never gets to complete her remark. At that moment, twelve-year old Jean Minh and ten-year old Jolie Minh run down the stairs, heavily burdened with textbooks and backpacks.

    Dominic scoops his daughter Jolie into his arms, much to Jolie’s delight, “Hey, sweetie! I heard that you got into a fight at school again. Mommy and I were going to punish you right away, but since it is your birthday, we’ll wait until tomorrow!”

    Jolie didn’t seem too worried by her father’s threat of punishment. Her parents’ punishments tended to be rather mild. She expected to lose the privilege of going out to play with her friends for a few weeks, “But there was this bully and…”

    “But nothing,” Dominic said, “not every problem is solved by caving somebody’s face in.”

    The sound of the local school bus filled the Minhs’ living room.

    “We’ll talk about this later,” Dominic said, ushering Jolie and her brother out the door and towards the school bus, “have a good day at school and DON’T GET INTO ANY MORE FIGHTS!”

    “Jolie,” Mrs. Minh calls out, “Come home after school right away this afternoon. We’re having a birthday party for you!”

    “Sure, Mom!” Jolie replies as she dashes onto the school bus.


    Recess time at Joan D’Arc Elementary School! Jolie is playing a game of basketball with the other children. In an earlier time period, Jolie might have gone on to star in the WNBA. In the Universal Century era, she merely dazzles her peers with her lightning quick maneuvers and dead accurate shot.

    After a while, things start getting rough. A tough, mean school bully named Bradley pushes down little Fumiko Hasegawa, a 5th Grader in the same class as Jolie. Fumiko falls to the ground, her knees and elbows skinned.

    As Fumiko begins sobbing, Bradley bounces the basketball hard against the girls head, “Hah! Wussy girl!”

    Fumiko cries harder, and Bradley’s anger begins to rise, “Hey, shut up you crybaby! You wanna get me into trouble! I said shut up!”

    Bradley raises his hand to strike Fumiko, but his hand is caught by Jolie, who spins him around and gives him a terrific slap in the face.

    “Why you little bit…” Bradley rages, lunging at Jolie.

    Jolie easily evades the powerful, but clumsy bully, and knees him in the gut.

    Bradley reels from the attack and takes a second to catch his breath. Growling like a rabid animal, he charges at Jolie again.

    Once again, Jolie dodges the bully, extending her leg to trip him. When he rises in an attempt to strike her again, she plants a punch on his nose that sends him down for the count.

    Jolie stands over the fallen bully, “Go away, Bradley, and don’t let me catch you picking on my friends or anybody else again. Next time, I’m gonna hurt you for real.”

    Bradley, knowing that he’s been beaten by a girl less than half his size, slinks away, more from humiliation than pain.

    Jolie helps Fumiko up, “You OK, Fumi?”

    “Yeah,” Fumiko replies, “thanks, Jo.”

    Jolie shrugs, “No prob. Hey! You’re coming to my birthday party later today, right?”

    Fumiko smiles, “Yeah. Been looking forward to it.”

    As the school bell indicates the end of recess, Jolie tells her friend, “My house after school, then!”


    At that same moment, at L’Ouverture MS Station elsewhere in the Quebec Colony, Captain Ibin Al-Atta of the MS Civil Defense Corps is briefing his subordinates.

    “Ladies and gentlemen,” Captain Al-Atta tells the gathered Federal Forces MS pilots, “Green Noah Command has notified me that the Phobos Division has mobilized again and will probably strike Side 5 some time tonight. We are vastly outnumbered, and reinforcements from Earth are not expected to arrive in time to assist us. The safety of all personnel and civilians in Side 5 rests with us.”

    1Lt. Dominic Minh clutches a defiant fist, “Let those Zeon scum come here! We’ll send their sorry asses back to the asteroid belt!”

    There are approving cheers among the Federal MS pilots.

    “All right then,” Captain Al-Atta says after the cheers die down, “Good luck to you all. Let’s mobilize.”

    From launch ports all around the Quebec Colony, RGM-89 Jegans, RGM-86R GM-IIIs (one of which is piloted by 1Lt. Dominic Minh), and RMS-179 GM-IIs sortie out in formation to meet the onslaught of the Phobos Division.



    RGM-86R GM-III, the standard Earth Federation Forces combat mobile suit during the late U.C. 0080s and early 0090s. 1Lt. Dominic Minh piloted this model of mobile suit as a member of Quebec Colony's civil defense force in U.C. 0092.

    Episode 3 to be continued...

  12. #12
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    Default Episode 3 continued

    Some distance away, the Phobos Division approaches. They are five Gwadjin class battlecruisers and fifty MS strong. Among the flotilla of standard, green-colored AMS-119 Geara Dogas is a single black AMS-119S Officer’s Geara Doga.

    In the cockpit of the black mobile suit is twenty-five year old Colonel Alexander Miguel. One of the most decorated young officers in Fuhrer Char Aznable’s Neo Zeon army, Alexander has recently assumed command of the Phobos Division after the passing of his father, General Carloman Miguel. Alexander has earned himself a reputation as one of the deadliest and most ruthless military commanders one either the Earth or Zeon side.


    Colonel Alexander Miguel, commanding officer of the Phobos Division, Neo Zeon Forces


    Major Ross Davenport, a good friend of Alexander’s since their days together in the Zeon Archduchy Military Academy, addresses his friend and commanding officer through the tactical net, “Alex?”

    Alex’s cold, strong voice comes through the tac net, “Ross?”

    Davenport continues, “Sir, may I take the liberty of asking what our objective is in attacking this colony? The Fuhrer…”

    Alexander silences Davenport, “The Fuhrer is the visionary and inspiration of our people, Major. The people of Zeon can never truly be free until the last degenerate Earthnoid Oldtype is eradicated. Our enemies are not only those who live on the Earth, Ross, but also those who live in space, but give their allegiance to those worms who burrow themselves into the Earth. These are traitors, Ross, and you know what fate awaits traitors.”


    At the Minh household back in Quebec Colony, Jolie’s tenth birthday party is underway. Jolie is about to hack into the cake samurai-style, but pauses to ask her mother, “Where’s Daddy?”

    Mrs. Minh smiles at Jolie, “Daddy had to work late, sweetie, but I’m sure he’ll be back by the time you open your presents.”

    Jolie isn’t pleased by this. She adores her father, and is deeply disappointed that he isn’t at her birthday party. Still, she understands that her father’s work of defending their space colony was important…maybe even more important than her birthday.

    “C’mon, sis!” Jean Minh demands eagerly, “Cut the cake! We’re starving here!”

    With a mischievous grin, Jolie hacks the cake with a samurai chop, sending frosting everywhere, much to the delight of all the other kids (but not so much Mrs. Minh, who has to clean up the mess).


    Outside the Quebec Colony, the Phobos Division and the Federal Forces’ civil defense squadrons are about to clash!

    Captain Al-Atta, in his RGM-79 Jegan, addresses his pilots through the Federal Forces tac net, “Enemy MS sighted, bearing four three zero niner. We have signatures: AMS-119 Geara Dogas. Fifty in number. Contact in twenty-five seconds. Stand by to commence firing.”

    On the other side, Alexander Miguel smiles predatorily, his mouth watering, “Smite them,” he orders with a rasp.


    The battle is joined in an instant. Here, a Jegan detaches the head of a Geara Doga with its beam saber. There, a Doga turns a GM-II into flaming wreckage with its gatling beam rifle. In another part of the battle zone, a Zeon MS forces its hand into a Federal MS’s cockpit and crushes its pilot to death. Terrible scenes of MS warfare erupt everywhere.

    Before long, it becomes evident that the tide is turning badly against the Federal Forces. Captain Al-Atta, battered and bloodied in his seriously damaged, atmosphere-leaking MS, grunts out an order, “Don’t let them attack the colony!”

    A GM-II attempts a strafing dive at Col. Alexander Miguel’s black Geara Doga, only to have its cockpit and pilot blown away by a shot from the black Doga’s beam rifle.

    “Filthy Earthnoid,” Alexander sneers, the thrill of battle and bloodlust coursing in his arteries and veins.

    Lt. Minh sees that a good number of Zeon MS have penetrated the civil defense network and are attacking Quebec Colony. Already, the colony has started to burn.

    “Sgt. Jiminez! Cpl. Tracy! Cpl. Zhang!” Dominic snarls through the tac net, “Follow me! We’ve got to return to base!”

    Back on Quebec Colony, Lucie Minh and her children are among the thousands of terrified civilians scrambling to get to emergency shelters. They dodge explosions, fire, and falling debris.

    To everyone’s horror, the flaming wreckage of a Federal Forces civil defense MS rains down around them, followed shortly by the appearance of Zeon Geara Doga mobile suits.

    The Dogas descend into Quebec Colony and open fire indiscriminately, lashing out at everything and everyone in sight. Hundreds die within seconds, and many more are seriously wounded. Entire families are wiped out in less time than it takes to tell about it.

    Lucie Minh searches frantically in the chaos for her children, “Jean? Jolie?!”

    “M-mom…” a weak, plaintive voice groans. Jean Minh has been impaled by a large piece of flying shrapnel. The boy’s blood drains from a wound the width of his entire abdomen.

    Jolie, thrown aside by a nearby explosion, but not seriously harmed, rushes to the side of her mother and her fallen brother.

    “Jean,” Jolie begins, staring in horrified shock at her gravely wounded brother.

    Suddenly, two more MS blast their way into the colony and land on each side of the Minh family. On one side is Alexander Miguel’s black Geara Doga, on the other side is the GM-III piloted by 1Lt. Dominic Minh.

    Dominic notices the presence of his wife and children, and his eyes widen with horror, “Get into a shelter, now!” he urges them.

    Dominic takes a closer look, and immediately wishes that he hadn’t. Meeting his eyes is a sight that breaks his heart: his own son, Jean, lies dead in a pool of his own blood.

    Tears flood the man’s eyes, and a vicious, animalistic growl bursts forth from him as he turns his gaze back on Alexander Miguel’s black mobile suit, “You Zeon pig! You murdered my son!”

    Lt. Minh’s GM-III, its beam saber ignited, rushes Alexander Miguel’s Geara Doga. Miguel easily avoids Minh’s enraged slash, and turns around to strike the GM-III with the butt of his Doga’s beam cannon.

    Dominic’s GM-III is batted onto the pavement, its sensors and control systems malfunctioning.

    Miguel prepares to blow away the skyscraper that towers over the spot where the Minhs are crouching.

    In a last, valiant effort, Dominic attempts to use his MS’s depleted beam cannon to put a chokehold on Alexander Miguel’s Geara Doga. Miguel easily counters the move, flipping the GM-III onto a nearby condominium complex.

    Alexander is tired of toying with his enemy. He fires a shot from his mecha’s beam cannon, straight through the middle of the Federal Forces MS.

    The GM-III explodes, killing 1Lt. Minh immediately. Shrapnel from his destroyed MS is propelled in all directions, and a dozen pieces of this shrapnel strike Lucie Minh.

    Jolie, struggling to free herself from the rubble that had shielded her from the shrapnel, watches the scene in horror. Her father’s corpse remains somewhere in the burning wreckage of his MS, cremated in the blasted cockpit.

    The bloodied corpses of Jolie’s mother and brother lie nearby, silent and cold forever.

    Through tear-clouded eyes, Jolie sees the shape of the black Zeon mobile suit that took her family’s lives.

    A look of hatred appears on Jolie’s face, “You…!” she rages helplessly.

    Alexander Miguel sees the little girl standing amid the burning runs of the city street. He points his mobile suit’s beam rifle barrel directly at the girl, then switches on his mobile suit’s external speakers so that she can hear his condemnation of her life, “One last Earth degenerate to cleanse from the universe.”

    The word “degenerate” echoes through Jolie’s ears. She is too young to know what the word actually means, but she senses the malice behind the word. She knows that the man inside the black mobile suit who killed her parents and brother hates her. She also knows that she hates him a thousand times more strongly.

    The finger of Alexander’s mobile suit tightens on the trigger of its beam rifle…


    Episode 3 to be continued...

  13. #13
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    Default Episode 3 continued

    Suddenly, there is the sound of more explosions. Federal Forces reinforcements have finally arrived. It is the Lond Bell Force, commanded by the legendary Captain Amuro Ray.

    Like the proverbial cavalry charging over the hill, the Lond Bell Force’s RGZ-91 Re-GZs and RGM-89S Jegan Customs tear into the Quebec Colony, sweeping the Neo Zeon mobile suits out. A Re-GZ lands between Jolie and Alexander Miguel’s Geara Doga, and a powerful Newtype PSI-energy spark momentarily erupts from Jolie’s head towards the Re-GZ.



    RGZ-91B Re-GZ, Captain Amuro Ray's mobile suit during U.C. 0092

    In the cockpit of the Federal Forces mobile suit, a reciprocal spark emanates from the pilot’s helmeted head.

    “What?” Captain Amuro Ray reacts to the power of Jolie's spark, “That pressure. It’s stronger than Char or Lalah, and different from both.”

    Amuro turns his attention back to the task at hand, “Colonel Miguel, this is Captain Amuro Ray of the Earth Federation Forces. I order you to lay down your weapons and surrender immediately!”


    Captain Amuro Ray in U.C. 0093, just months after he saved Jolie Minh's life.

    Alexander’s response is to pull out his Geara Doga’s beam saber and charge at Amuro’s Re-GZ. Amuro easily dodges the slash and responds with a beam saber slash of his own, severing the arm of Miguel’s Doga with a single, spectacular move.

    Alexander decides to cut his losses and run. Alexander might be an egotist and a great ace pilot in his own right, but he’s also canny enough to realize that he has no hope of winning against the legendary Amuro Ray.

    “Retreat!” Alexander orders his troops as he lays down a volley of blinding flares and smoke bombs to cover his escape.

    Captain Amuro leaves it to his comrades in the Lond Bell Force to pursue Miguel and the retreating Phobos forces. He is more concerned about the little girl whose Newtype spark he had sensed moments earlier.

    Amuro climbs out of the cockpit of the Re-GZ and removes his helmet. Jolie, seeing him for the first time, envisions Amuro as a knight in shining silver armor.

    Amuro approaches the frightened girl gently, a friendly smile on his face, “All you all right, kid?”

    Jolie runs into Amuro’s arms, sobbing. Amuro holds the girl tightly and tries to console her.

    We came too late, Amuro reflects sadly, this girl survived, but her life will never be the same. Those soldiers who did this didn’t think that these people here are no different from the families and loved ones they left behind at home. Damn this war!


    A few hours later, Amuro takes Jolie by the hand to an Earth Federation Government war orphans’ welfare center. This is an agency of the Earth Federation Government organized to provide care for children orphaned by the war. Sadly, during the past quarter century, this particular government agency has needed to grow almost larger than the military itself.

    Amuro is reluctant to turn Jolie over to the Federal government authorities. Were he a civilian, he would seriously consider adopting Jolie himself. As a soldier whose duty is to hunt down Zeon terrorists, however, he cannot provide care for the girl, and has no choice but to leave her in government care.

    Jolie clutches desperately at the sleeve of Amuro’s uniform jacket, “Captain Amuro, I don’t want to stay here! Please take me with you! I want to go with you!”

    Amuro kneels in front of the girl and puts his hands on her shoulders, “Jolie, you can’t come with me, but the people here are very kind and they’ll take good care of you. There are many people out there who need my protection. As much as I’d like to, I can’t bring you with me.”

    Having seen her own family die, Jolie can understand the importance of Amuro’s duty. He could not afford to be encumbered. Brave, dedicated soldiers such as Captain Amuro and her late father were the only chance that innocent people had against monsters such as Alexander Miguel.

    Amuro gives Jolie an affectionate kiss on the cheek and a pat on the head, then turns to leave.

    Jolie watches the Federation’s greatest ace pilot depart to continue his duties. Although she would never see him again, Captain Amuro Ray has become her lifelong hero and role model.


    Episode 3 to be continued....

  14. #14
    Moderator Ken Cheng's Avatar
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    Default

    Still looking for comments, people, so if you're reading, any thoughts or remarks would really be appreciated.

    I'm also glad to answer any questions anybody might have about this fanfic.

  15. #15
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    Default Episode 3: Conclusion

    That night, dressed in the used clothes provided to her by the government authorities, Jolie prepares to escape from the Federal orphanage. She would much rather survive on her own than live as a ward of the Earth Federation Government.

    Sneaking out of the orphanage compound proves to be easy, but next came the more difficult problem of where to go next.

    Jolie finds her way to the colony spacedock. She locates a cargo shuttle carrying recyclable materials. The shuttle is about to leave for the Industria Colony of Side 5. Jolie knows nothing about Industria Colony, or that the shuttle is headed there, but decides to take her chances. Jolie boards the shuttle, bound for the industrial colony that would be her home for the next five years.

    A time-lapse montage depicts the following five years of Jolie’s life as she struggles to grow up in the gritty environment of Industria Colony. During these years, Jolie refines her fighting skills, supplementing her childhood martial arts training with streetfighting techniques. Jolie survives by shoplifting, cat burglarizing, and pocketpicking, soon becoming an expert of stealth, evasion, and thievery. Jolie also frequently finds herself in the midst of Industria Colony’s street fights, and causes a startling amount of carnage with just a single broken glass bottle, iron pipe, or self-made shiv. In time, Jolie becomes the stuff of urban legend, her name written as graffiti on walls, benches, and lampposts. Even Industria’s harder edged criminals regard Jolie with a measure of fear and respect.


    Jolie’s account of her past ends as Athena pours the girl a fifth glass of expensive bourbon. Jolie is bleary eyed from both the alcohol and the tears she let fall as she told Athena about her past.

    Athena can empathize: the loss of parents, abandonment by heroes, growing up alone – it is all too familiar to Athena.

    “So you were rescued by Amuro Ray,” Athena muses aloud, “Interesting…”

    Athena chuckles to herself as she considers the irony of that: Athena herself had once been rescued from attacking Federation Forces by Char Aznable, who had been Amuro Ray’s great lifelong nemesis. It had been Char who had mentored and cared for Athena for a period of three years before he met his final fate battling Amuro Ray in Earth’s orbit.

    Doubling the irony is the fact that Athena’s father, Admiral Dozle Zabi of the Zeon Archduchy Space Fleet, had also been killed by Amuro Ray during the One Year War. Athena has never hated Amuro Ray, however. In Athena’s view, personal loss is an inevitability of war, and she has never taken the loss of her father and mentor on a personal level. Holding on to old hatreds would be vain: Athena’s focus is on the present and the future, not the past. The past is what she seeks to escape from.

    Jolie’s story is almost a mirror image of Athena’s: rescued by attacking Zeon forces by Amuro Ray, but instead of being raised and cultivated by her benefactor, Jolie had been left to find her own path. Since the loss of her family, Jolie has been seething for vengeance. The evil grin of Alexander Miguel, and his maniacal laugh, continues to haunt Jolie’s nightmares. She would find no peace until he was dead at her hands.

    Reading deeply into Jolie’s beautiful face, Athena asks, “Jolie…have you ever killed anyone before?”

    The directness of the question startles Jolie slightly. The girl doesn’t know what to say.

    Expecting that reaction, Athena asks, “Just answer the question: this isn’t a trick to nail you.”

    Jolie, uncertain why, but somehow trusting Athena, finally admits, “Yeah. Yeah, I have…not because I like killing, but Industria’s a tough place, you know? I’ve had to kill lots of times just to stay alive. I’m not proud of it or anything. It’s just something I had to do”

    Athena nods knowingly as she sips from her own glass of bourbon, also her sixth, “Understood. To me, it’s good that you don't have any hangups about killing, because what I have in mind for you will require you to do quite a bit of bloodletting.”

    Jolie puts down her wine glass and asks, “You’re planning on making me a killer for the Federal Forces?”

    “Not a killer,” Athena corrects, “an instrument of justice…and not necessarily for the Federal Forces, but for all those who have suffered in these endless wars.”

    “I don’t get you,” Jolie replies.

    Athena continues after a slight pause, “The world is the way it is today because small men with small minds have been ruling it for too long. That’s why your parents...and my parents...are dead, Jolie. Many more parents, and their children, will die in the years to come…unless we change this world.”

    Jolie lets out a little laugh, “Just how are two teenaged girls supposed to change the world, Lieutenant?”

    Athena smiles, sipping from her glass again, “Come with me, and you’ll learn. We can change this world, Jolie. We can create a future in which terrible things such as happened to our families will never happen again. Do you want others to go through what you’ve gone through, Jolie? Or do you want to help me to change the world?”

    Something about what Athena says, and how she says it, causes Jolie to deeply believe in the young Federal Forces officer. This Athena Ibaz certainly has a very definite goal, a steely determination to achieve it, and a mind that absolutely has the intellectual capacity to make her vision a reality.

    This line of thought provokes Jolie’s curiosity about the classy, beautiful, and sophisticated young woman, three years her senior, sitting across from her, “So what’s your story, Lieutenant? You said something about your dead parents just a minute ago. Who are you? Where were you from?”

    Athena smiles a mysterious, bitter smile, and pauses for a moment’s reflection before answering, “I was no one special, and where I’m from doesn’t matter. I’m not concerned with yesterdays; only tomorrows.”

    Jolie is a bit disappointed that Athena is not as candid with her as she had been with Athena. Clearly, the pretty, elegant, and refined young Federal officer has her secrets, but Jolie figures she can crack those secrets…in time.

    “So are you with me or not?” Athena asks, interrupting Jolie’s thoughts.

    “To change the world, you mean?” Jolie replies after a moment.

    Athena extends her hand to Jolie with an encouraging grin.

    Jolie takes Athena’s hand in a solemn grip, “I’ll do it, but there’s something I want too.”

    “Alexander Miguel’s blood?” Athena ventures.

    Jolie nods.

    Athena replies, “If it serves my goals, then yes, and the elimination of warmongers such as Miguel is definitely part of the plan.”

    And so a friendship and partnership is born and sealed. Two young women, neither yet twenty years of age, begin a quest to change a world that had been blighted by war for too long.

    END OF EPISODE 3

  16. #16
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    Default Episode 4: FIRST SORTIE

    EPISODE 4: THE FIRST SORTIE

    Six months have passed. During these six months, Athena Ibaz has been formally appointed as commanding officer of the Centurion Team, replacing the team’s slain first commanding officer, Captain Rick Tinne. With the new appointment comes a two-rank promotion (for recovering the Gundam-100 prototype). Athena is now a captain.

    At the same time, Jolie Minh has completed basic training at the Federal Forces academy. An unprecedented talent, Jolie has broken all previous performance records in MS combat training for the Federal Forces. She is clearly a prodigy of tremendous potential, a fact that has not gone unnoticed by Federation High Command.

    Athena has requested, and received authorization, to have Chief Warrant Officer Jolie Minh assigned as her personal assistant and executive officer. Athena has persuaded the high command that because she had been the one who first discovered Jolie and identified the girl’s Newtype potential, then she should also be the one to oversee Jolie’s development as a Federal Forces soldier.

    Athena has also requested that the Gundam-100 be assigned to the Centurion Team, to be piloted by Jolie. Federation High Command is still deliberating this matter, but Athena strongly believes that this request will also be authorized.

    It is January 1, U.C. 0098, the start of a new year. Captain Athena Ibaz is hard at work in her private office, drafting plans for more effective counterterrorism tactics to be used against the ISRLA and Zeon remnants.

    A knock comes on the door of Athena’s office. Without looking up from her work, Athena answers, “Come in, please.”

    The door opens and 2Lt. Gene Spencer, Colonel Cairlay’s personal aide, enters.

    2Lt. Spencer salutes, “Thank you, ma’am. 2Lt. Spencer reporting, ma’am. Ma’am, General Noah and Colonel Cairlay request your presence at tonight’s Armistice Commemorative Ball at 20:00 in Reville Hall.”

    Athena nods and looks at the stylish, French baroque style clock on her wall.

    January 1, 0080, Athena muses to herself, the day the One Year War came to an end. Just one of many days of reckoning for all of us.

    Habitually, Athena pulls a handkerchief from the front pocket of her uniform jacket, wipes her hands tersely, and repockets it before replying, “Thank you, Lieutenant. I will be there at 20:00. Please inform Colonel Cairlay that I will be bringing a special guest with me.”

    2Lt. Spencer salutes Athena again and leaves to carry out his orders.

    Athena picks up her desk phone and keys the direct line to the officers’ academy, “This is Captain Ibaz. Please patch me through to Sergeant Major Atsuka.”


    19:00 that evening. Captain Athena Ibaz is decked out in her formal Earth Federation Special Forces officer’s uniform, which includes the officer’s hat and commander’s overcoat, which Athena wears draped over her shoulders.

    Athena is in a dormitory corridor of the officers’ academy. She stops at the door of room 780 and knocks on the door gently, “Jolie? We’re due at Reville Hall in an hour. Are you ready?”

    Jolie’s muffled voice comes from behind the door, “Yeah. Just a minute!”

    A moment later, the door opens. Chief Warrant Officer Jolie Minh emerges. Six months in the Federal Forces’ academy has made a world of difference. The formerly unkempt and scruffy teenaged street vixen is now a very pretty and immaculately groomed young Federal Forces officer…courtesy of Athena Ibaz’s handiwork.



    Chief Warrant Officer Jolie Minh, Earth Federation Special Operations Forces, Centurion Team

    Athena takes in an eyeful of the “new” Jolie and cannot help but laugh. She cannot help feeling some pride in how she’s helped to transform Jolie.

    “What?” Jolie asks, “Do I look weird in the uniform?”

    Athena shakes her head and gives Jolie an encouraging grin, “You look very pretty. I think you’ll go over well with the senior officers tonight.”

    Athena makes some final adjustments to Jolie’s uniform, straightening Jolie’s junior officer’s cap, making sure Jolie’s uniform jacket is buttoned all the way up, smoothing out minor wrinkles, etc.

    As she does this, Athena reminds Jolie, “Now don’t forget, you’ll be meeting some very important people in the Earth Federation Forces tonight. I want you to behave yourself and not do anything to embarrass us, understand?”

    “Yeah, yeah. Whatever,” Jolie responds in an annoyed tone. Jolie swears Athena is like a mother hen sometimes.

    Athena glares at her. Jolie, taking the hint, grins sheepishly and salutes, “Yes, ma’am, Captain Ibaz, ma’am. Chief Warrant Officer Jolie Minh reporting, ma’am!”

    Athena gives Jolie a wry grin and a pat on the rear. The partners make their way to Reville Hall.


    Reville Hall: tonight, the elegant, neoclassical building is splendidly decorated for the New Year’s/Armistice Commemorative Ball. It’s an exclusive event to which only the Earth Federation Forces’ most important and prestigious members and their closest associates are invited. The grand chandeliers are brightly illuminated. The marble-tiled floor gleams. An orchestra group plays a lively Richard Strauss waltz as officers drink and dance the night away.

    Captain Athena Ibaz and Chief Warrant Officer Jolie Minh arrive at Reville Hall. Stewards take their officer’s hats and overcoats.

    Colonel Cairlay, conversing with several flag-ranking Federation officers, excuses himself to greet Athena, “Captain Ibaz, it is a pleasure to have you here tonight.”

    Following military protocol that Athena knows better than her own name, Athena replies, “It is an honor to be here, sir.”

    Colonel Cairlay spots Jolie and fixes her in his predatory gaze, “And who is this attractive young officer you’ve brought with you, Captain? Her beauty matches yours.”

    Before Athena can reply, Jolie pipes up, extending her hand to the colonel, “I’m Jolie. Jolie Minh. Glad to meetcha!”

    Cairlay is taken a bit aback by Jolie’s lack of discipline and protocol, but says only, “Ah, yes. You’re the young woman who helped Captain Ibaz to recover the Gundam-100 prototype six months ago. I’ve heard your name often during the past several months. It’s good to have you in the Earth Federation Forces, Chief Warrant Officer Minh.”

    Ignoring everything that Colonel Cairlay says, Jolie adds, “You must be a really high ranking guy in the Fed Forces. Got to be with that scary-looking face and a scary-sounding voice you've got!”

    Athena glares silently at Jolie as the girl smiles impishly.

    Colonel Cairlay reddens, but maintains his outward composure and tells Athena, “Captain, please excuse me, there are several other officers I need to greet over there.”

    So saying, Cairlay departs quickly.

    Athena motions Jolie aside. When they’ve reached a quiet spot, Athena whispers harshly to her, “What’s up with the attitude? I told you to behave yourself, remember?”

    Jolie shrugs, “Sorry. I didn’t like that guy. He’s creepy.”

    Athena sighs and nods, “Even so, he’s our direct superior, Jolie. If you’re going to make it in the Special Forces, you need to be able to follow the rules of military protocol, among a thousand other things.”

    Their discussion is interrupted by the arrival of a steward, who offers them glasses of champagne. Athena and Jolie each take a glass of the bubbly spirit.

    “I could get used to this,” Jolie says, taking a sip from her champagne glass.

    General Bright Noah approaches them, “Good to see you, Captain Ibaz. And this must be the Chief Warrant Officer Minh you’ve been telling me about.”

    “General Noah, sir,” Athena acknowledges, “Yes. This is Jolie Minh. Jolie, this is General Bright Noah.”

    Jolie’s eyes widen in recognition, “Oh, wow. You’re like, THE Bright Noah! You were the commander of the White Base during the One Year War and the Ahrgama during the Gryps War. It’s a pleasure to meet you, sir!”

    In spite of herself, Athena cannot help smiling. Clearly, Jolie has much more respect for General Noah than she did for Colonel Cairlay.

    Bright chuckles in modesty and amusement over Jolie’s enthusiasm, “I was just in the right place at the right time more than any man has a right to be, Chief Minh. The real heroes are the ones who can’t be here tonight.”

    Episode 4 to be continued

  17. #17
    Senior Member maki_hitsugaya's Avatar
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    you actually made this yourself...
    "Deep South.."
    "when you rush you miss the important things when you take your time you find new paths"
    "Beware the fury of a patient man."

  18. #18
    Moderator Ken Cheng's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by maki_hitsugaya
    you actually made this yourself...
    Yes, but with more or less all of the 1980s GUNDAM series and films providing the background story. Half the characters that appear in the story are Yoshiyuki Tomino's (including Minerva Zabi, although I developed her character into Athena Ibaz), and the other half are mine (Jolie Minh is completely my character).

    The basic idea came to me one summer day back in 1991, when I was (of all places) riding a bus in New York City while vacationing there. Maybe it was something about the New York air or water; it is the creative capital of the U.S., after all.

    The basic plot and main characters were all conceived in one afternoon, but the actual writing took four years; there's still *alot* to go. So far, I've posted up about 1% of it.

  19. #19
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    Nearby space: a squadron of ten RGM-89 GM-III mobile suits assigned to the Side 6 Civil Defense Guard is chasing what appears to be an MA-08 Byg Zam mobile armor in the general direction of Side 7. The Byg Zam is piloted by Major Luther Bonham, a 35-year old former Side 6 Civil Defense Guard officer who is now, for reasons yet unrevealed, a fugitive from his former comrades-at-arms.

    Two of the Side 6 CDG GM-IIIs fire their beam rifles and a spread of missiles at the Byg Zam. The giant mobile armor’s ion-neutralization field (I-Field) dissipates the beam energy of the GM-IIIs’ gunfire, but the missiles rock the mobile armor violently.

    Inside the Byg Zam’s cockpit, Major Bonham grimaces through the impact. A handsome man with a thin moustache and hair worn slicked back in a classic Valentino style, Bonham is eerily calm as his finger squeezes the trigger mechanism built into the Byg Zam’s control yoke.

    Blazing hellfire erupts forth from the maw of the Byg Zam’s heavy particle beam cannon, instantly immolating the three GM-IIIs in its path and forcing their surviving comrades to break off the pursuit.



    MA-08 Byg Zam

    Captain Huisook Song, leader of the Side 6 GM-III squad in pursuit of the Byg Zam, orders his team to withdraw and opens a communications channel to Green Noah EFSF High Command, “This is Side 6 Civil Defense Guard to Federal Garrison Noah, please acknowledge, Garrison Noah!”

    ************************************************** *****

    Back at Reville Hall, a tense Colonel Cairlay searches the crowded ballroom for General Bright Noah. Cairlay finds the general in the midst of a conversation with Captain Athena Ibaz.

    Cairlay whispers something urgently into General Noah’s ear. The general gives Cairlay an appalled look, excuses himself, and begins to head towards a conference room with a colonel.

    Within seconds, General Noah pauses to reconsider, and turns around to face Athena, “Captain Ibaz, would you please join us?”

    Athena replies, “Yes, sir,” and prepares to join her two superior officers.

    Jolie, who had been quietly and bewilderedly watching all this, protests, “Hey, Athena? What about me?!”

    Athena turns to Jolie and buttons up Jolie’s uniform jacket (which she has left open around the neck again, to Athena’s annoyance) and tells her, “Wait for me until 22:30. If I’m not back by then, return to your quarters so that you won’t be AWOL, understand?”

    With that, Athena leaves.

    Jolie continues to protest, “But Athena!”

    Athena, however, has left with the two senior officers. A frustrated Jolie takes a seat on one of the nearby sofas, pulling her knees to her chin.

    ************************************************** ******

    Conference Room B-188: assembled are General Bright Noah and General Manron Blackhead (commanding officers of the Cislunar Space Armada), Colonel Peter Cairlay of the Special Operations Forces, and Captain Athena Ibaz of the Centurion Special Operations Forces. Also present is Colonel Gopi Pandit of the Side 6 Civil Defense Guard.

    Col. Pandit, a regal-looking woman of Indian descent, turns to Bright Noah, “General Noah, if all necessary personnel are assembled, I will brief you on the situation at hand.”

    General Noah nods courteously, “Yes, Colonel. Since time is of the essence, please begin immediately.”

    Colonel Pandit begins, “Two months ago, construction personnel from the Colony Development Corporation discovered a fully operable Zeon mobile armor MA-08 Byg Zam hidden in an abandoned Side 6 colony that had been scheduled for rehabilitation. We are certain that this mecha is the second of two Byg Zams produced for the Archduchy of Zeon’s space forces during the One Year War. The CDC properly relinquished custody of the mobile armor to the Side 6 CDG, and have kept the mecha impounded at our Celeste MS Station under the supervision of Major Luther Bonham, commanding officer of our MS Battalion.”

    General Blackhead interrupts Pandit’s report, “Excuse me, Colonel. Do you mean that your people had located such a dangerous weapon and did not inform the Federation High Command about it until now? Do you realize that you…”

    General Noah cuts Blackhead off, “General Blackhead, please. Let Colonel Pandit finish her report.”

    Pandit continues, “About three weeks ago, our intelligence personnel discovered that Bonham had been negotiating with the Phobos Zeon Confederation for five billion gold credits from the Phobos Zeon Reserves. We have kept Bonham under surveillance until forty-eight hours ago, when he eluded our surveillance teams and illegally took possession of the Byg Zam.”

    General Blackhead, not placated, adds with bitter sarcasm, “Your surveillance personnel leave quite a bit to be desired, considering it completely failed to prevent such a dangerous weapon from getting stolen from right under your noses!”

    Colonel Pandit, maintaining her composure in the face of Blackhead’s withering remarks, replies, “Major Bonham had been the leader of our military surveillance group. It was Major Bonham who created many of the procedures and protocols that our surveillance personnel have used with great effectiveness against Zeon and ISRLA insurgents. It is not at all unusual that Major Bonham was able to foil surveillance measures that he had been personally responsible for putting into place.”

    “Not unusual,” General Noah concedes, “but it has created a serious problem for all of us. But please continue your report, Colonel Pandit.”

    Pandit does, “Our MS Battalion was placed on high alert, and we have been pursuing the Byg Zam for the past forty-eight hours. Our forces are, however, heavily outgunned by the Byg Zam. All of its weapons systems are online, and we have already lost fifteen mecha over the past two days.”

    “So you chase him into our backyard,” General Blackhead says in disgust, “you Spacenoids certainly know how to…”

    “General, that’s enough,” Bright Noah says sternly, “As this matter has already entered our jurisdiction, we must naturally resolve it.”

    General Blackhead objects, “I say we should let the Side 6 CDG handle it. This is a problem of their making. Side 6 is an independent state. It should look after its own problems and not leech off of the Federal Forces.”

    General Noah gives General Blackhead a hard look, then says, “Manron, I’ve already said that this matter has moved into our territory and therefore, it has become our problem now. The Earth Federation Forces last encountered a Byg Zam during the One Year War. I remember it well. It was during the Battle of Solomon, when the prototype Byg Zam operated by Dozle Zabi inflicted massive casualties upon our forces until it was destroyed by 2Lt. Amuro Ray’s RX-78 Gundam.”

    At the mention of her late father’s name, and the infamous battle that had killed him, Athena instinctively takes her handkerchief from its place in the breast pocket of her uniform jacket and uses it to tersely wipe her fingers.

    Pausing for a moment to reflect, General Noah then continues, “Presently, we have a new Gundam-class mobile suit undergoing testing. I’ve been informed that the mobile suit is combat ready, but we have yet to find a suitable pilot for it.”

    Athena rises, “Sir, if I may?”

    “Go ahead, Captain Ibaz,” Bright replies.

    Athena says, “Sir, we do have a suitable pilot.”

    ************************************************** **

    Back in the ballroom, the guests at the New Year’s/Victory Commemoration Party have long since departed. It is 22:15.

    Jolie is thoroughly fed up with waiting for Athena to return. Three hours have passed since Athena disappeared with the senior officers, leaving Jolie to her own devices.

    Her stomach growling with hunger, Jolie scouts the cocktail tables and manages to scavenge some leftover oer’deurves, potato chips, and fruit punch.

    At 22:20, an entourage of Federal officers passes through the ballroom en rout to offices and command posts. Captain Athena Ibaz is among them.

    Athena approaches Jolie and grabs her by the arm, “Jolie, come with me,”

    Jolie, a little buzzed by the punch, burps, “But I’m going to be AWOL in ten minutes.”

    Athena turns to Jolie with an enigmatic grin and she drags her protégée along, “Don’t worry, everything’s already been cleared.”

    “What’s been cleared?” Jolie blinks in confusion.

    Athena turns away again, “Your first taste of blood, kid.”



    Episode 4 to be continued...

  20. #20
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    In the spacious office of General Manron Blackhead, the commander of the Earth Federation’s Cislunar Space Fleet is speaking furtively with Colonel Peter Cairlay, Director of the Special Operations Forces.

    “We’ve got a serious problem on our hands, colonel,” Blackhead says guardedly, “if that rogue Bonham is captured alive and interrogated, then…”

    Cairlay doesn’t need Blackhead to finish, “I understand, sir. That does seem to be General Noah’s intent.”

    Blackhead grunts with disgust, “Fools such as Bright Noah have turned the Federation into a body of sanctimonious sob sisters. The colonies no longer respect the Federation because they think that we’ll tolerate anything and everything those damned Spacenoids do up here. That’s why we’ve had no peace these past twenty years, Cairlay.”

    There is a tense silence before General Blackhead smiles sinisterly, “Cairlay, each of the Special Forces teams operate independently of the others as a part of standard protocol, correct?”

    Cairlay replies, “Yes, sir. Unless they’re being coordinated by Federal High Command for a joint operation. We keep their individual operations separate to make it difficult for them to collude against the Federal government. They’re too well trained and too well equipped for us to take any chances.”

    Blackhead puts his hand on Cairlay’s shoulder, “Colonel, I have a suggestion….”


    23:00 at the MS station of Green Noah Garrison. Chief Warrant Officer Jolie Minh is being strapped into the RX-780 Gundam 100. Engineering and support crew personnel are giving Jolie some last minute reminders about the capabilities and limitations of her experimental combat mecha before she sorties.

    Captain Athena Ibaz, who like Jolie is clad in a Federal Forces MS pilot’s normalsuit, gives her protégée some final instructions, “Jolie, be sure to disable to Byg Zam, but don’t kill the pilot. We’re going to need him for interrogation.”


    Chief Warrant Officer Jolie Minh, Earth Federation Forces, in her pilots' normalsuit

    Jolie gives Athena a confident thumbs up, “No problem.”

    Athena gives Jolie a reassuring smile and a pat on her helmeted head, then departs. The support crew seals the Gundam 100’s cockpit hatch.

    “No problem at all,” Jolie says to herself, gripping the control joysticks of the mobile suit as the combat computer comes online.

    The Gundam 100’s emerald-lighted eyes flash to life.

    Nearby, Athena straps herself into her own mecha, an RGM-95S GM IV Officer’s Custom. Both Jolie’s Gundam 100 and Athena’s GM-IV Custom are lifted onto the launch catapult.

    “Captain Athena Ibaz, GM-IV Custom, launching!”

    “Chief Warrant Officer Jolie Minh, Gundam 100, launching!”

    Episode 4 to be continued...

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