Episode 6 part 1
Hello again. It's me, Mileena, narrating this interesting story once again. This part of the story will continue to grow more darker and darker, especially with the imminent danger of armageddon, the ultimate battle between good and evil forces and the possible end of all life as we know it. Scary things like that. Ever since learning about it from Taven's parents, Garnie has been a little on edge, Zagato, Sister, Jade, Nightingale and Taven have been discussing about how to prepare for Armageddon. Taven insists that its his job, and his brother's to stop Armageddon by themselves. He told us he's leaving to go searching for his brother, and he told us to enjoy the calm in any way we can while we still have time... Because the storm is coming. Hearing him say that sent chills up and down my spine. So after Taven went his separate ways, Jade, sister, Zagato, Nightingale, Garnie and I returned to the Edenia palace to plan on what to do until... Until the storm comes.
It's been 4 days since that day. We're back at the Edenia palace, it's morning, and its very cloudy and raining outside. I was looking out the window at the gray clouds, the rain and the courtyards below. A lot of things are on my mind, so this is why I'm just daydreaming, watching the rain. Eventually Garnie came to my side and joined me. "Something on your mind, Millie?" Garnie asked me. I shook my head. "You said that today's your birthday, right? Why the long face, then?" Garnie asked me, putting a comforting hand on my back. How could I tell him the doubts and fears that are constantly rolling around in my mind? How will it help? "You're worried about the end of the world, right?" Garnie asked me. "...Yes..." I sullenly nodded. I looked back over my shoulder at Mile's crib. He was inside it laying down with my teddy bear. He looks so cute just laying there with my teddy bear. "What bothers you about it?" Garnie asked me. I sighed in depression. "... Everything. I'm afraid of losing everything. My sister... You... Miles... Everyone I've grown to care about." I never noticed the tears leaking from my firey red eyes. "You know, to some religions, Armageddon isn't exactly an extremely disasterous phenomenon." Garnie said as he gently stroked my shoulder length black hair. I turned to look at him incredulously. "How could you believe that??" I asked him, raising my voice. He flinched a little, but he kept his eyes focused on mine. "Let's just say that it is known to be the beginning of something good. Something better." "Like what?" I asked curiously. "A new, peaceful life, for example. A calm after the storm, know what i mean?" Garnie said. I blinked twice and lapsed into silence. "So... you're saying that if we all survive this Armageddon, we'll live new, peaceful lives?" I asked Garnie. "Yeah, something like that. Between the storm, there's a calm, in the beginning and end." Garnie nodded with a small smirk. I chuckled. "You amuse me, Garnie. On the day Taven's parents told us about Armageddon, you were freaking out because you believed their plan to stop Armageddon won't work at all." I said. "Yes...?" Garnie nodded slowly, raising his left eyebrow in confusion, trying to find out the point I'm making. "And now today, you're suddenly optimistic." I added. "What's wrong with being optimistic?" Garnie asked me. I giggled. "Nothing. It just seemed like you've been having mood swings, that's all." I said. "You're no stanger to mood swings either, you know." Garnie smiled a warm, inviting smile. Just then someone came knocking on our door. "It's open." Garnie called, then the door opened and Jade and Nightingale stepped inside. Jade held Dahlia, and Night held Cattleya. "Mileena, why aren't you downstairs? I thought you said that you want to see everyone set up decorations for your birthday party." Jade told us. "Oh no! I forgot!" Garnie gasped. "You're missing out on the fun! Jax, Zagato, Johnny and Wayne are having a contest game. You have no idea on how much fun you're missing!" Night said. "Oh crap! Millie, I almost forgot to tell you that your bithday is tomorrow! Jade, Night, thanks for reminding me why I came up here." Garnie said. "That's fine, bro. In fact, I had a feeling something was eating Mileena and you two needed some privacy." Night said. "Nothing was eating me, Night." I said in annoyance. "It's a figure of speech, Millie. I meant to say that I knew you were depressed about something. Right, Cattleya?" Night said. Cattleya looked into Night's eyes, breathing heavily and smiled. "I wanted to wait until you came back to the party, but... Garnet, could you hold Dahlia for me?" "Sure." Garnie replied, approaching Jade and taking Dahlia into his hands, then Jade focused her attention on me. "... There's a present that I couldn't wait to give you." Jade concluded her sentence after pausing to hand Dahlia to Garnet. This is unusual. Despite our rough past, Jade has a present for me...? "What is it?" I asked curiously. Jade reached behind her back and revealed a purple colored blade fan, which resembles the Sister's and Jade's own blade fans, the only difference is the blade fan Jade is offering me as a present is the same color as my outfit. "... You're giving me my own blade fan...? Why?" I asked. Jade pulled down her green veil, revealing her fair, pretty nose and lips, something I don't have, and don't care about having, I'm pretty in my own way. "Mileena, I know together me and Kitana had a rough, unfriendly history with you, but things have changed now, you're not allied with the forces of evil anymore, you're Garnet's spouse, and Mile's mother. I never saw this coming for you." Jade said. "Neither did I." I admitted. "And Kitana has adopted you as her sister. It's time for me to stop treating you like an enemy... And treat you like a friend, or... better yet, a sister." Jade said as she approached me and held out my present in her hands. Looking down at the folded blade fand, I reluctantly took it into my hands. "Jade, I..." Grief started to make me choke up, and tears streamed from my yellow eyes. "I've been friends with Kitana for almost a thousand years, she's like a sister to me. It's time for me to start thinking of you as a sister now, not just because you're a half Tarkatan clone of Kitana, but also because we shouldn't let our history sour our friendship. Besides, it wouldn't be fair if you didn't have your own blade fan like Kitana and I, now that I consider you a friend, and a sister." Jade said, putting her warm, comforting hands on my shoulders. I was speechless. I had no idea how to reply to such a sincere, heartwarming comment. I'm experiencing emotions that I can't describe. I'm crying, but I feel more happy than sad. I pulled down my veil, revealing my Taraktan styled nose and sharp, partially yellow colored teeth. I felt so happy I could smile (but my mouth is already fixed in a sinister grin, so I look like I'm smiling whether I'm actually happy or sad, but my grinning mouth isn't betraying my true emotions right now), then I embraced Jade in a tight hug, resting my head on her chest. "Thank you, sister Jade! You're my new sister now!" I squealed happily. Jade looked at Garnie and Nightingale with a "Somebody kill me, this is embarassing" look on her face. "Aww, isn't that cute?" Garnie smiled. "Yeah... This'll take some getting used to..." Jade said nonchalantly. I then stopped hugging my new sister Jade, went over to Miles's crib and picked him up. "So uh... When will he start growing in his teeth?" Nightingale asked Garnie. "Soon. I don't know how soon, but soon." Garnie replied, standing next to me, putting his left arm around me and kissed Miles's forhead then mine. Garnie handed Dahlia back to Jade. "Life can take strange twists and turns, can it?" Nightingale asked all of us. "Yeah. Personally, I like the turn it took." Jade said. "Who would have thought you and Millie would become as close as you are to Kitana?" Garnie asked Jade. "I really didn't see that coming." Jade admitted then pulled down her veil to kiss giggling Dahlia's nose. "I didn't either. Everything happened so fast, sometimes I wonder how I got here." I admitted as well. "Well, honey, you have me to thank for that." Garnie told me. "I'll certainly thank you... In more ways than one." I said seductively as I winked at him. "And I have Jade to thank for turning my miserable life around." Nightingale said. "You've had a rough past. It's about time you settled down and relaxed." Jade replied and kissed Nightingale on his cheek. Nightingale then smiled at us as Cattleya tried grabbing his nose. "See what I mean?" Nightingale asked us. "Yeah. You know, tonight, we should go out somewhere. I know this great place where we can relax alone." I suggested. "That's a great idea! But where should we go?" Jade asked me. Later on, that night, me, Garnie, Jade and Nightingale went to a lovely restauraunt in Edenia with a perfect view of the moonlit ocean. We ordered an extra large cheese pizza and we had lots of fun eating, chatting and telling jokes. "I still can't believe they make pizzas here in the Outworld." Nightingale said for the 2nd time. "I guess pizza is one of many universal foods." Garnie added. "I guess you're right." Nightingale said with a shrug before taking another bite of his pizza. I've never eaten pizza before, but I LOVE the flavor of the tomato sauce with the cheese! Its so hot, so tasty, so... toasty! The restauraunt also had a jacuzzi for couples who want to relax in after eating a satisfying meal. Of course, we relaxed in the jacuzzi for a while after finishing our pizza.
Later on, in the afternoon the next morning, downstairs in the living room area of the palace, everyone of Sister and Jade's friends were partying, having a good time. Zagato, Liu Kang and Johnny were playing a board game called "Trouble", a game where you press a bubble shaped object with a dice inside it in the middle of the board, and whatever number faces up on the dice, you move your pawn on the board that many times. Nightingale taught me how to play that game a couple days ago, its really simple and fun. Jax and Kai were arm wrestling, Sister is having a conversation with Sonya, Li Mei and Ashrah. The other birthday party guests are Sindel, Ermac, Nightwolf, Stryker, Kenshiro, Mr. Faust, and Garnie's childhood friends Wayne and Nathan. "... So that's what happened?" Johnny asked Zagato before pressing the plastic bubble to make the dice inside roll. "Yep. Taven's parents told us about the end of the world and how they planned to stop it." Zagato nodded. "did they say when this "Armageddon" will be happening?" Liu Kang asked Zagato curiously with seriousness in his eyes. Zagato shook his head. "All we were told is that Taven and his brother are on a quest to save all the realms from imminent destruction." Zagato said. "This is crap. What are we supposed to do about it?" Johnny asked after moving his yellow pawn down the board 5 steps. Zagato shrugged. "Kitana said that as soon as Jade and Night return with Garnet and Mileena, she's going to inform everyone in the party after Mileena blows out the candles of her birthday cake." Zagato said. "How old is she now?" Johnny asked. "One year old, I guess. I still have a hard time believing it, she looks like a fully mature woman." Zagato said, scarcely believing his words. "Yeah, it's difficult to remember that she's only a clone of Kitana..." Liu Kang said. "With Tarkatan eyes, nose and mouth." Johnny added, not missing a beat after Liu Kang paused. Zagato nodded, pressed the bubble, and moved his blue pawn 3 spaces forward, then his eyes lit up. "Wait! I just thought of something. Miles. Since Mileena is a clone of Kitana, does that mean Miles is technically Kitana's baby too?" Zagato asked Johnny and Liu. "Shhh! I wouldn't tell her that if I were you." Kenshiro said, joining in the conversation. "Yeah. She'll get really depressed thinking about that." Wayne added, also joining in. "Ah, here they are." Sister announced loudly enough for everyone to hear as she noticed Jade, Nightingale, Garnie and I coming into the living room. "Sorry I'm late." I announced to everyone. "Well well, if it isn't the birthday girl." Sindel remarked. My heart started pounding, but I don't know why. Is it out of excitement or fear...? "What's the matter, Mileena? You look a bit flustered." Ashrah said to me in concern. "What? No, I'm fine, I just..." My voice trailed off because my mind went blank for some reason. What is wrong with me...? Maybe its because I'm not used to this much attention, especially from kind hearted people. "Mileena! What are you waiting for? Blow out the candles on the cake!" Jade urged me. I snapped out of my trance and looked down at the cake in front of me on the table. It is a strawberry cake (my favorite kind of cake, even Garnie's) with white frosting, and on top of it, above the three lit candles are the words written in purple colored frosting: "Happy Birthday, Mileena!" I removed my veil and leaned down towards the cake. Garnie told me about what happens on birthdays, it's natural to blow out the candles on a cake and make a wish. But the problem is I don't have lips, so blowing out the candles will be difficult. But I had an idea. I opened my mouth, inhaled deeply, then exhaled as hard as I could until my breath extinguished the fires on the candles. I thought it wouldn't work, but I put in enough effort to pull it off. After I... "exhaled" out the candles, I silently made a wish... I'm not going to reveal what I wished for, and everyone around me applauded. "That was awesome, darling! You didn't need lips to extinguish the candles after all!" Garnie exclaimed, giving me a congratulations pat on the back, then a kiss to my left cheek, a few inches below my left eye because it's one of the few places of my face my wide grinning mouth can't reach. "Congratulations, Mileena! Happy first birthday!" Sonya called out to me. "Okay, now that Mileena has blown out the candles, everyone, I have an important announcement to make." Sister raised her voice so everyone can hear. Everyone fell silent, giving all their attention to my sister Kitana. "A few days ago, my adopted sister Mileena, brother in-law Garnet, Jade, Nightingale, my king Zagato and I traveled with Taven to meet with his parents, Argus, the protector god of Edeni himself, and the Lady of Flame, Delia in the Temple of Argus in the Botan Jungle of the Earthrealm. There, we were told the most disturbing news we've ever heard." Kitana announced. "How disturbing?" Kai wanted to know. "... Very." Sister said wryly to Kai. "... We were told that Armageddon, the end of life as we know it, is coming." Kitana said. Low murmurs started spreading around the room. I knew this would spark some uneasiness, but I actually thought it would cause a panic. "Armageddon?" Stryker asked Kitana. "What can we do? Is there a way to stop it?" Li Mei asked Kitana. "There is, but its out of our hands, though. The only ones who can prevent Armageddon is Taven and his brother." Kitana said. The murmurs grew louder, and I could feel the outrage building up in the room. Nobody likes to hear that none of us can do anything to stop Armageddon. "This is bull, Kitana! Why can't we help Taven? Why should we sit in the sidelines?!" Jax exclaimed in outrage. "I didn't ask, Jax." Kitana replied. "You should have! This is urgent!" Stryker exclaimed. "Hey, the news alone shocked us speechless, so don't blame us, Stryker!" Nightingale snapped defensively. Garnie sighed and shrugged. "I guess what we should do is go back to the temple and ask them." Garnie suggested. "We'll come with you." An unfamiliar feminine voice said. "What the--?" Zagato gasped, and all of us turned to the direction where the voice came from. Near the living room's second entrance at the other end of the room across from the entrance that leads to the kitchen and gym, we saw a red haired woman with a ponytail hairstyle and a man with short, smooth black hair. "Who are you, and how did you get in here?" Sister demanded, drawing out her fan blade. Everyone did the same, either getting into a fighting pose or getting their weapons ready for combat. "Relax. My name is Skarlet. And this is my partner Burai." Skarlet said. Skarlet's outfit is as revealing as mine, sister's and Jade's the only difference is her outfit is red as blood, and there are three kunai blades strapped to her right thigh, she has long red boots and she also has a red veil covering her mouth and nose, like me, Jade and sister. Burai has shoulder length, braided hair, a stern look on his face, his ninja outfit is the same color as Skarlet's only his is a darker shade of red. "Skarlet...? Wait, I thought it was just a rumor..." I said in shok. Jade, kenshiro, Nightingale, Garnie, Zagato and Sister looked at me suspiciously. "What was the rumor?" Kenshiro asked me. "When I still served Shao Kahn, there was a rumor that he created a warrior called "Skarlet" from the blood of his deceased warriors from battlefields. I thought it was something like an urban legend, but I never thought it was true..." I said in fear and awe, never taking my eyes off Skarlet. "Well, as you can see, the rumors are true." Skarlet said in a matter-of-factly tone. "Cut to the chase. What are you and 'Mr. Smiley' doing here?" Zagato said, aiming to drive into the heart of the matter. "We're hear to make a deal." Burai said for Skarlet. Liu Kang frowned. "Deal? Last time I checked, you're still allied with Shao Kahn. How can we trust both of you?" He asked. "Yeah. The last thing I need is to get stabbed in the back." Sonya agreed. "Shao Kahn is dead. We are allied with no one but ourselves." Burai said in an emotionless tone, his expression hard as stone. "We aren't your enemies, but we aren't your friends either. My mission was to uncover Quan Chi's ulterior motives, to make sure he doesn't plan to overthrow Shao Kahn and dominate all the realms himself. But now that the emperor is dead, our mission is to destroy Quan Chi, as it is now obvious that he will do whatever it takes to do what the emperor failed to do." Skarlet said. "So... The enemy of our enemy... is our ally." Zagato slowly said. "Precisely." Burai nodded, crossing his arms. "Looks like we've got some neutral allies." Johnny muttered to Kai. "It's better than nothing." Kai shrugged. "So, now that we're all partners, what's next?" Kenshiro asked. "We need to go bck to the Temple of Argus and ask Argus and Delia if there's anything we can do to help Taven and his brother stop Armageddon. There's no way they should do this alone." Sister said. "I agree. A big task like this is more than likely too big for one or two men to handle." Mr. Faust said. "Our point exactly. Nathan, Wayne, Kenshiro, you're coming with me, Mileena, Nightingale, Zagato, Jade, Kitana, Burai and Skarlet. The rest of you keep the palace safe, okay?" Garnie ordered. "Yes sir." Johnny nodded. "And take care of our babies too. Be sure to feed Khleo mashed bananas. He loves bananas." Sister said to Sonya. "And if Miles starts crying, give him my teddy bear, he loves my teddy bear." I said to Sonya. Sonya couldn't help but laugh. "Take care of yourselves." Ashrah said as we started to leave.
We returned to the Botan Jungle, only this time we made sure to stay together and not get distracted by anything, not even the flies. We didn't run into any trouble on the way to the temple, that's the good thing. "Hey. There it is." Zagato pointed out. "Yep. Never thought I'd be coming back here again." Nightingale nodded. "Looks kinda... Homely." Wayne noted. "We better hurry up and ask them if there's anything we can do." Sister said. We walked up the flight of steps and entered the temple. "Hello? Hello?" Garnet called, his voice echoing. We looked around. Something feels unusual. I don't know how to describe it, I didn't have this feeling during my last visit. I stood close to Garnie. "Garnie, darling... Something isn't right..." I whispered ot him. "I know. Someone should have answered me by now." He whispered back. We entered the main room where we had the conversation with Argus and Delia last time. "Hello? Is anyone here at all?" Nathan called. "What could have happened?" Nightingale asked, feeling bewildered. Skarlet scanned the room, turning her head left and right until she saw something up ahead faintly hidden by a faint glow of golden light in the darkness of the room. "Kitana, Jade, Mileena, look over here." Skalret called to us. Sister, Jade and I joined Skarlet to see why she called. "What is it?" Jade asked Skarlet. She pointed ahead. "Look over there." She said. We turned our heads toward the direction she was pointing and we saw some dark object hidden in the darkness but faintly illuminated by the golden glow of sunlight beaming down in the room from the opening of the ceiling, "What is that...?" Sister whispered. "Let's go see..." I whispered. We slowly approached the mysterious object while Garnie, Zagato, Nightingale, Nathan, Wayne, Kenshiro and Burai were on the other side of the room checking for any clues. "What the...?" Kenshiro whispered, looking down at the concrete floor, frowning. "What did you see?" Garnie asked him, walking next to him. Kenshiro pointed down at the floor, not saying a word. Garnie, Zagato and Nightingale gathered around Kenshiro and kneeled down. They saw a trail of liquid of some kind. "Is that... blood...?" Nightingale whispered. "If only I had a flashlight..." Zagato mumbled. "I got a bad feeling about this..." Burai said. At that moment, Jade, Sister, Skarlet and I discovered what the mysterious object is. "Oh my...!!! Everyone! Over here, quick!" Sister exclaimed. Almost immediately, Garnie, Nathan, Kenshiro, Zagato, Nightingale, Wayne and Burai rushed over to join us. "What?" Wayne asked. "Look at what we found." Jade said sullenly. All of us inspected they mysterious object closely and we slowly figured out that the mysterious objects are... bodies. Two dead bodies. And we also found out who they were. My eyes widened. "Holy sh...!!!" Nathan gasped in horror. "This can't be happening!" Sister exclaimed. "Oh crap...!" Zagato gasped. The dead bodies are Taven's parents, Argus and Delia, someone murdered them! "Who could have done this?!" Jade exclaimed. "A vile heart, that's who." Sister replied. "Verdammt! This is not good. Whoever did this is long gone. There's no trail to follow, no leads." Nightingale growled in frustration. We heard thunder outside the temple, then the sound of rain falling outside, hitting the roof of the temple. I looked up at the ceiling upon hearing the sound of the rain. "Great. As if on cue..." Wayne muttered. "Whoever is behind this deed, I don't think they could have won so easily taking on Edenia's protector god and the Lady Of Flame together in a fight." I said, crossing my arms in thought. "Mileena's right. Whoever done this, it must be someone who is capable of making Argus and Delia lower their guard." Skarlet said. "But who?" Nightingale wondered aloud. "The only person I can think of is Taven, but he would NEVER do such a thing!" Jade said. "We should go and find Taven, wherever he is." Garnie said. "How? We don't even know where he went!" Sister snapped at Garnie. "And I don't feel like walking through a rainy jungle either." Nathan said. We all then lapsed into silence for a few seconds. "So... should we bury them? I mean, its the least we can do." Garnie added. "I agree." Jade nodded. "Well... At least the bodies have barely started to decompose..." Kenshiro said darkly, afraid of dealing with the foul odor of a decaying corpse. Garnie, Zagato, sister and I started to grab hold of Argus and Delia's body, but to our surprise, as soon as Garnie and Zagato tried to pick up Argus's body, he woke up choking and gasping, spitting out blood! "Oh my God, he's alive!!" Wayne exclaimed. We were all in a state of shock! I'm so surprised, my heart is pounding quickly! Garnie and Zagato helped Argus sit up as he took in hard, deep breaths. "Take deep breaths. Take deep breaths." Zagato urged Argus. "No... *cough*, *cough*, need for that. My wounds are... fatal. *cough, cough*... I will pass on soon." Argus said between coughs. "Argus, tell us what happened. Who did this?" Jade asked. "And why?" Nightingale added. "*Cough, cough, hack, cough*... It happened only a few hours ago... The attack came so unexpectedly... Delia nad I didn't expect him to do such a thing... *cough, cough*" "Who did it?" Burai asked. "It was... *cough*... It was... Taven's brother... Daegon..." As soon as Argus finished his sentence, everyone except Skarlet and Burai gasped in horror. "Oh! I don't believe it!" Nightingale shook his head in denial. "It's true... He did it without warning. He didn't say why, either..." Argus whispered. "If Daegon did this, then that means he's gone..." Nathan paused there then Wayne picked up where he left off. "... Bad to the bone." Wayne finished for Nathan. "Taven is likely in danger then." I said. "Do you know where he went?" Jade asked Argus. "...He... went to... Charred Mountain..." Argus gasped one final time before passing away. "Damn it all..." Nightingale cursed. clenching his hands into fists. "I guess we're off to Charred Mountain then... And me without my rock climbing equipment..." Kenshiro muttered. Garnie looked at Kenshiro in an appaled expression. "How can you be so nonchalant at a time like this?" He asked Kenshiro."Easy. Be optimistic." Kenshiro shrugged with a grin. "That's probably because you got nothing to lose." I said, trying to hold my anger in check. "What?" Kenshiro looked at me in confusion. I approached him, and gently grabbed his throat, tightening my grip a little. "Mileena, don't--" Sister tried to say to me until she noticed that Kenshiro wasn't choking. "Do you know how it feels, knowing the end of all life is only a few days, weeks, months or years away, that you could lose everything you treasure, like your sister, brother, or even your own beloved child?" I paused to let Kenshiro reply, but he didn't reply. "I thought not." I said in a low, meanacing whisper then let go of his neck. "Jeez, Mileena, you scared the crap out of us!" Zagato exclaimed. "I made my point. Now, let's get going and get to Taven before its too late." I said. Kenshiro sighed. "Mileena is right. In my optimism I was thinking only of myself and not about everyone else." He said. Zagato rubbed his hands together. "So, when the rain stops, we'll bury Argus and Delia outside, then we'll head over to Charred Mountain." He said. What awaits us there?