This article, Gundam 00S: Star Struck Episode Five: Mirrors, is property of Ransac16.

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Chapter 10: Duel in the Desert

“Hold on Ransac, we’ll be back at the base soon.” Said Longshot. Ransac nodded while he continued to gaze into the distance, thoughts swirling through his mind.

Karith had actually done it, he had created another Super Soldier. And he had done it by using Ransac’s DNA. He had no idea how Karith had managed to, honestly he didn’t care.

How many more was he creating? Two? A dozen? Or was it even worse, was he creating an army of Super Soldiers for his quest for revenge? One thing was for certain, he had to put a stop to it before it grew out of control.

“Longshot to Atlantis Base, prepare to come up, we’re- what the?!” Demanded Longshot as Ransac stole his radio.

“Launch the Rush Gundam now!” Demanded Ransac.

“Ransac! What’s going on?” Demanded commander Daryl.

“I said launch it, now! I don’t have time to explain!”

“Roger, locking onto your position, launching Rush Gundam.” Came the reply.

“Tell me what the hell is going on here!” Daryl demanded.

Instead of answering, Ransac thrust the radio back into Longshot’s hand.

“Get ready to launch immediately once you get to the base, tell that to the others as well.” Ordered Ransac.

“Hang on kid, just what the hell is going on here? Did he put a bullet in your brain or something?”

Ransac ignored the question. In the distance he caught a red glint. Timing it carefully, Ransac leapt out of the jeep, grabbing onto a ladder as the Rush Gundam roared past. Climbing his way up he crawled into the cockpit. Without a second thought he slammed his pilot helmet onto his head, opening the com as he did.

“I’m in, pass me control of the Gundam.” The screen in front of Ransac flashed to announce he had control of the suit. Within seconds he had brought the Rush Gundam into full speed.

“Let’s see if I can find you.” He thought.

After a minute of rapidly searching the immediate area, Ransac found it. In the distance he caught the gleam of sunlight off of the armor of a rapidly moving Tieren Taozi. It was heading deeper into the dessert.

“I know where you’re going, and I’m not going to let you get there!” Ransac aimed the Gundam’s right hand and fired a series of beams from the GN-Claws. One managed to strike right next to the Tieren Taozi, which immediately swung around and began firing it’s own gun.

“I knew you would follow me, it’s inevitable.” Said the pilot.

“Who are you?! Answer me!” Demanded Ransac.

“If you want a name, then you can have it, I am subject E-60, you may call me Milliardo Consulo.”

“Why does Karith want me to return? He already has my DNA if you represent anything.”

“Isn’t it obvious? You already have training, it’s far easier to use a trained soldier than to make a new one.”

“He wanted me dead, why would I ever come back to that wretched place. Celestial Being is my home now!”

“You fool!”

Milliardo launched his Tieren Taozi forward, pull out a beam saber to attack directly. Ransac swung his arm around, using the beam coated armor around the GN-Claws to counter the blade.

“Celestial Being is nothing more than a cruel contradiction.”

“You’re wrong! Celestial Being is trying to create a peaceful world for us all!”

“Liar! They killed our brothers and sisters in space! They killed innocents just because they were in the way!”

Ransac dodged a wild swing from Milliardo, barely getting away in time to avoid losing a leg. He immediately swung his foot into the Tieren Taozi to deliver a powerful kick to the chest. The mobile suit was forced away for a brief moment.

Instead of letting him recover however, Ransac immediately closed the distance between the two, preparing to deliver a crushing blow to the head. Instead the GN-Claws were caught by the beam saber, another lock began between the two.

“I’m not excusing that, but being dead is at least better than being a slave to the world as a living weapon! That is something Karith needs to learn!”

Milliardo gave a mocking laugh over the com.

“You say he needs to learn that but you have yet to learn that yourself! Look at you! You say you fight for peace, but you are simply a living weapon who knows only how to fight! Your purpose is a joke! A contradiction of the worst kind!”

The Tieren Taozi suddenly pulled it’s gun to aim at the Rush Gundam’s chest, directly at the cockpit. Ransac dropped the weapons lock to deliver a vertical kick to the gun, instead of striking the cockpit, the shot grazed the shoulder of the mobile suit.

“I’m going to put an end to your suffering!” Announced Milliardo as he began to deliver a barrage of gun fire.

Ransac swung the Gundam around to dodge the continuous fire. When that didn’t work, he brought the Gundam directly into the sky.

“You’re delusional! Claws! Fly!”

The GN-Claws soared at the Tieren Taozi, allowing Ransac to pull out his beam rifle. Ransac began to deliver his own barrage of gun fire alongside the GN-Claws.

The Tieren Taozi easily dodged everything thrown at it. That confirmed Ransac’s theory that this was the same pilot as before. The Tieren suddenly shifted it’s attention from Ransac to the GN-Claws, destroying them one by one with it’s gun.

“You’ll have to do better than that! Mere machines cannot hope to beat me like that! You hardly use your full potential!” Taunted Milliardo.

Another GN-Claw was destroyed before Ransac switched tactics. He immediately switched from the beam rifle to the physical sword. Once that was done he rushed directly at the Tieren Taozi.

The beam saber of the Taozi crashed against the physical sword of the Gundam, leaving a dramatic explosion of sparks and electricity as the two were forced against each other.

The Taozi pulled out to dodge a beam barrage from the GN-Claws before crashing against the physical sword again.

“You still don’t get it. You may have a Gundam, but I have the advantage here!”

“You underestimate me!” Roared Ransac.

Suddenly the GN-Claws switched from beam mode to physical mode. Within a second the GN-Claws started to flying straight at the Taozi.

Milliardo seemed unfazed by the sudden switch though. With seeming ease he broke the lock again. With a flick of the Taozi’s wrist the beam saber cut through two GN-Claws before delivering a wide slash to the other. Now Ransac was out of GN-Claws to use against him.

“I’ve broken your toys, now it’s your turn!”

“I’m not done yet!”

Ransac brought the physical sword into a horizontal slash, directed at the cockpit of the Taozi. Instead of connecting though, Milliardo brought the beam saber to block. The next second he pulled out the gun and shot the sword downward into the ground. After that he performed a vertical arc with the beam saber, severing the left arm of the Gundam as he moved.

“Damn it!” Swore Ransac as he pulled away from the Taozi. This move proved a mistake.

Without missing a beat, Milliardo brought the gun forward to deliver a bombardment of shells onto the Gundam. The bullets didn’t break through the armor, but they did send the Gundam crashing onto the ground from the impacts.

Before Ransac could bring the Gundam back up however, Milliardo brought the edge of the beam saber directly over the cockpit. In his other hand, he had the gun aimed at the mobile suits head.

“You’re finished.”

Just as he began to bring the beam saber down however, the arm holding it suddenly exploded off of the Taozi. It had been removed by a precision shot from a particle beam.

“Hold on, Ransac! We’re coming!” Announced Longshot.

Milliardo forced his Taozi away from the Gundam as Longshot fired a barrage of long range beams while Strafe bore down on him with his Agas in fighter mode. As he evaded the two, the Taozi was suddenly grazed by a massive particle beam.

“This isn’t over! We will meet again!” Snarled Milliardo over the com. The Tieren Taozi suddenly swung around and roared away from the battle.

Ransac took a deep breath as he leaned in his seat. He had almost died there. He would be better prepared next time.

“You alright in there buddy?” Demanded Dom over the com.

“Ya, I’m alright, we’re going to need to repair the Gundam though.”

“You had us worried there, just what the hell were you thinking?” Demanded Longshot.

“He’s from the Super Human Institute, I had to stop him. Longshot, he was a clone.” Explained Ransac. The following com silence was filled with tension.

“Things just became a much greater deal to us now, we’ll tell the commander, this won’t go by lightly.” Said Strafe, a small amount of shock in his voice.

“We have to stop Karith before he becomes stronger, he wants to wipe out Celestial Being.” Said Ransac.

“We’ll give him hell before that happens.” Replied Dom.

Privately, Ransac wondered how they were going to come out of this alive.

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