And we're off with version 2 of the sixth chapter.
Disclaimer: BGC is owned by JVC and Phantom 2040 is based on characters and
situations created by Lee Falk. No money is being made from this and no such
intent should be inferred.
C&C,, public or private is welcome. I respond to all C&C....eventually
"Now there's something you don't see every day...
Unless you're us."
-Xander, "Buffy The Vampire Slayer"
With the Phantom close behind, the Knight Sabers emerged from the underground
complex to be greeted with a horrific sight. Boomers marched across the
complex, firing concussion beams at anything that moved, the waves of force
crushing and twisting everything they hit, be it steel, stone, wood, or flesh
and bone. People didn't so much as die, as they collapsed under their own
weight as their skeletons fractured into shards.
Like a well oiled machine, the Knight Sabers sprang into action. Sylia took
to the air as Nene fell back, her hardsuit generating EM waves at high
frequency which wreaked havoc with the boomer's gyros, making them easy prey
for Linna and Priss as they darted into they fray, the armor of the boomers
resisting, but gradually denting into pieces under the repeated blows.
"Phantom!" Guran called as he too emerged from underground, carrying a large
laser cannon. Taking it, the Phantom took aim as his suit's systems connected
with the cannon's targeting scanners, bringing up the HUD in his mask.
"Computer," Phantom said, firing at the boomers whenever he could as he
dodged their return fire. "Uplink to Ghost Eye One for tightbeam com
transmission to Sparks."
"Operator," replied a boy's voice a moment later. It was very young, it's
owner couldn't have been more then fifteen. Sparks was actually only
fourteen, but he was quite possibly the best computer expert in the world.
"Sparks, have you been watching those old movies again?" A snicker was the
reply. The Phantom decided to ignore that. "Bring up the telemetry from my
mask and tell me what kind of boomer I'm looking at," he said. "There's about
twenty or so of them that I can see and they're tearing up Walker
"One sec." There was the sound of keys tapping. "Sweet. Those are top of the
line. Class A Urban Assault Boomer. Heavy combat model. Shipstone power
source, inch thick armor with ceramic overlay and armed with a class two
force rifle, seventy-five caliber recoilless machine pistol with two thousand
round ammunition, variable type, and vibroblade knife. Full spectrum audio
and visual sensors, with a maximum temperature tolerance of two thousand-"
"I don't need a sales pitch, Sparks, I need to know where it's weak spot is."
"Here. Sorry. Needed to hack into Genom's files. Took me a few seconds."
"Sparks...even you need more then a few seconds to break into Genom's
"I know, but I've got a reputation to uphold. Besides, Maxinmum stole the
files three months ago. There's several memos about it." That made more
sense. Sparks had been hacking Maxinum for months and had a permanently
encoded backdoor into their systems.
"The weak spot, Sparks."
No weak spot per say, but the armor is only half an inch thick just below the
back of the neck in a two square inch section. That's where it keeps the
antenna for it's com gear." A diagram flashed in the Phantom's mask of the
boomers, a small square highlighted.
"Got it. Thanks, Sparks. Computer, cancel uplink and log on to Phantom Jet
mainframe. Download sabercom and synchronoize." Automatically, the Phantom
Jet recorded all communications and ran them through a decrypt program which
contained all known ciphers. When he had been told this, he had naturally
asked how that was possible. As it turned out, Walker International made
cryptology equipement and had several goverments as customers, Each machine
W.I. turned out had a component that copied and transmitted the codes to
Walker International's mainframe via the electrial lines by something called
Muzak. The component then disentigrated into dust which was removed and
disposed of by the machine's automaintenance system. This way, the Bandar had
stolen thousands of codes and ciphers and using them, helped themselves to
billions of secrets.
Kit's friend Chip Gordon often voiced his lack of trust in anyone who did
something for reasons of religion. The Bandar did everything in the name of
their God and quite frankly, the Phantom was beginning to wonder just how
closely he could trust the Bandar when it was becoming increasingly apparent
that they posessed little in the way of ethics.
In any case, a few days ago, during the battle with the boomers, the jet had
recorded the Sabers com traffic. The Phantom could only imagine the look on
Guran's face when the program cracked their encryption in five minutes. By
sheer coincidence, both the Phantom and the Knight Sabers used variations of
the McGuffin Cipher, which according to Guran, had fallen into the dim
recesses of obscurity since nobody used anymore. And since nobody used it,
nobody would think to try it.
Unless they used it, of course.
"...Watch your left, Linna!" Sylia was shouting as the suit's com
synchronized with the Saber's.
"Hey!" Nene inturrupted. "Somebody just broke into the com net!"
"That's me, Nene," the Phantom replied. "There's a two square inch section
right below the back of the neck where their armor's the thinnest. Go for
"Right. Linna? Priss?"
"Already there," Priss said, already striking the spot with her knuckle bombs
and then leaping away as Linna's monofilament ribbons slashed the thin armor
into shreds. From there, Sylia fired her laser cannon into the open space,
the intense energy refracting and tearing the boomer's guts into shreds. The
Phantom helped where he could, darting back and forth around the battlefield,
aiming at the boomer's optical systems with his handguns, forcing them to
concentrate on him, leaving them open to Priss, Sylia, and Linna. Nene
focused on messing with the boomer's tactical net and com systems.
It wasn't the quickest way, but it worked and one by one, the boomers began
"God!" Linna gasped as she pulled off her helmet and sank down onto a piece
of rubble. "I'm exhausted."
"Yeah," Nene said, joining her friend. Setting aside her helmet, she suddenly
glared at the Phantom. "How did you get into our tac net anyways?"
"The phantom's jet simply decoded your scrambling, while you were engaged in
battle with the rogue's the other day, " Guran said as he joined them and
passed out canteens of water. "And then passed it onto the Phantom."
"Simply!" Nene cried, lunging to her feet. "Simply?! I worked for weeks on
that com cipher, Mister! You do not 'simply' decode Nene Romanova's code. No.
Way. Uh-uh. Forget. It."
"We use a variation of the McGuffin Cipher too." Guran replied.
Nene glared at Guran for a moment. "You are so losing your credit rating,"
she muttered and sat back down.
The Phantom, however, was frowning, as he stared at the boomers. Moving
slowly, Walker International Security officers were dropping EM grenades into
the open plates of the boomers, permanently frying their systems. "So, you
feel it too," Sylia said. "You're right, it was too easy."
"Distraction?" Priss asked, joining them.
"Of course," Sylia said archly. "But from what?"
"Agggggghhhhhhhhh!" Linna and the Phantom shouted simultaneously, grabbing
their heads. The pain lasted only for a moment and then Linna recovered.
"You okay?" Nene asked.
"I...I don't know. It was like something was calling me, urgently summoning
me, right, Kit? Kit?"
They looked around, and then in the distance, they saw a purple figure
charging towards the distant trees, a plume of smoke rising upwards from
"That answers that," Sylia said.
"We must hurry," Guran said, retrieving the Phantom's dropped laser cannon.
"Great Nekoaluri has summoned His champion. The Ghost Jungle is in peril."
In their suits, Priss, Linna, and Nene could run up to two hundred kph, but
with the rubble strewn ground, they were forced instead to do a sort of
running hop. Sylia's armor however, boasted a jet pack and she raced
overhead, reaching the source of the smoke well before the others, who
arrived only seconds later.
Before them lay a blasted clearing, trees charred and smoking. In the middle
of it was a black kay suit battling the Phantom. They knew they should move
in. Help him somehow, but they stayed were they were. For all their desire to
help, something even stronger told them to stay back, that this was not their
And while she obeyed that feeling, Linna's horror was growing, for the
Phantom was losing. He was simply no match for the sheer power of the kay
suit. The operator wasn't even bothering with weapons, the impact of his
suit's fists leaving craters in the forest floor and toppling trees.
Worse yet, the Phantom was tiring and the blasts from his plasma blasters
were having little effect on the kay suit's heavy armor. Finally, he made his
mistake, stumbling on a scrap of wood and falling. Like a bolt of lightning,
the kay suit's hand shot out, grabbing him by the arm and heaving him into
the air like a rag doll and then slamming him down onto the ground.
It was a blow that would have stunned any man, but somehow, the Phantom got
The kay suit backhanded him across the clearing.
Again, the Phantom got up, slowly, and obviously in pain, only to be
assaulted by the kay suit once more.
And with each blow, Linna felt her resentment at being trapped begin to
vanish with each blow the Phantom took. Time and time again, he was struck,
and each time, he refused to give up. Refused to lie down. And as she
watched, Linna had a flash of insight. The Phantom embodied the human spirit.
No matter what adversity he faced, no matter what happened, The Phantom
somehow went on. It was like a slap to the face.
They had told Linna Yamazaki there was no way she, a girl from a small town
with barely any training could beat Sun-Yin, one of the fastest women in the
world at the Eastern Games. Linna Yamazaki had beaten her by a full three
They had told her that she would never compete professionally again after her
knee injury. Linna Yamazaki took first at the Japan national Games in
After Hammoto had used her, Linna Yamazaki had vowed that never again, would
she be used for someone else's plans.
But in the jungle, watching an ordinary man fight a battle he couldn't win,
something in Linna clicked...
And completely and totally without reservation, she surrendered to her fate.
She was the Phantom's bride, it was she who would bring the next Phantom into
the world, she would raise him with all the love in her heart that a mother
could give a child, and he would grow up to be every inch the man that his
The kay suit raised it's foot to crush the Phantom beneath it's heel and a
scream burst forward from Linna's throat, amplified by her suit.
With a crash, the kay suit's foot came down on empty ground. Not twenty feet
away, the Phantom hovered as though weightless, arms dangling loosely. There
was something different about the look on his face and the Sabers felt as
though there were others in the clearing, called there by some otherworldly
force. In the dim light of the setting sun, it almost seemed as though the
clearing was no longer a clearing, but that others had arrived. Ghostly
figures wearing masks, dressed in purple. With them there were others. Women
every bit as strong and courageous as the men they stood beside.
In one single moment of both acceptance and defiance, Linna had summoned the
Phantoms of the past and the women who stood with them. Twenty-three
generations of perhaps the most noble legacy had returned once again to the
world they had donated to and in some cases, given, their lives to protect.
Not seeing the figures, or perhaps simply not caring, the kay suit moved
towards the Phantom and swung it's fist, which was stopped by the Phantom's
"What trick is this?" The suit's operator demanded, voice altered by the
"We are the Phantom," the Phantom replied in a voice that seemed to echo as
though others were speaking with him. "We are order where there is chaos,
light where there is shadow, hope where there is dispair. Strike us down, we
will rise again."
"Pretty speech," the operator snarled and swung their suit's other fist
forward. The Phantom caught that too, all the while repeating those same
"Look at Linna," Nene whispered and Sylia and Priss turned to look. The green
suited saber was hovering off the ground just like the Phantom, glowing
softly with a pale blue light and then over the com, she too began repeating
the Phantom's words, and the ghostly figures also began to chant the same
words and the light in the clearing began to take on a green glow.
"Cover your eyes!" Guran shouted.
"What?" Nene asked.
"Your eyes! Damn it all, cover your eyes! The Jungle itself is bringing it's
power to bear! Cover your eyes if you want to keep your souls!" The Sabers
complied, opauqing their faceplates for good measure.
Something else seemed to enter the clearing, something inhuman, something
ancient beyond all comprehension that struck a cord in them and then the
force of an explosion hit them, knocking them to the ground with a roar they
felt in their very bones.
For a moment, they heard nothing, and then Linna's voice came over the com.
"It's all right, it's over." Resetting their faceplates, the Sabers found
themselves looking at a the remains of the clearing, the burned out wreck of
the kay suit in the middle. All the figures were gone save two, a man and
woman facing the Phantom. The woman's lips moved, and then they vanished.
"Look," Nene said, pointing. At the very edge of the clearing, a great black
panther stood, it's stance more then just one of the great cats, it was the
stance of a king. Then, that great head moved in a nod of respect before it
turned and vanished into the jungle.
"Praise be, Great Nekoaluri," Guran whispered softly.
Steve "Komodo" T.
"Then we would drink a lot of beer, and when Mantook was ready, he would
tell me the story of the Great Moose, who said to the Little Squirrel, "Hey,
Rocky, watch me pull a rabbit out of my hat."
-Jim Carrey on Just For Laughs
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