Army of Steel: Part 9 ~ "Bitter Defeat"

ANFA: Gomen, gomen! I've been so busy with my website, homework, fan art, computer graphics, IMing and such that I sorta left this off for way too long… I'm so sorry! ;___;" Well, at least it's here, right? And it's the longest one. Over 12 pages instead of the usual 3-5. Last part…well, sorta. =:-D Heheheh.


"How's he doing Holly?" Hare hopped over into the small cave that the group was forced to use as shelter. Holly sighed.

"He's all right for the most part, but he's too weak to get up. He's asleep right now." Hare nodded.

"All right," he said, turning back to the others. "So, SF, what do we do now?" Silver Face sighed.

"Well, Pixie told me that her group found out how Genocider knew where we were," he said.

"Really? What was it?" Tiger questioned.

"The Waters of Time," Big Blue replied.

"Hey! That's not fair! How come he gets to use The Wa-" Suezo was cut off.

"I blew it up with my Lighting," Pixie assured him. The monsters breathed a sigh of relief.

"Save your breath," SF warned, "if I know Genocider well, he's gonna take his whole army and come after us. Since most, if not all of his troops, can Teloport, it's only a matter of time before we're found. I suggest we prepare for battle and expect to be attacked at any time."

"But. What. About. Genki?" Golem asked. Holly blinked and looked back at the sleeping young man and blushed slightly as she sighed.

"Golem's right. We need to keep Genki away from any fighting until he recovers his strength."

"I understand that," Silver Face replied, "Well, I guess we could try to stay in places where one of can hide with Genki while the others fight."

"Not the best idea, but I think it's all we've got," Gray Wolf commented. "Let's get some sleep, we all need it." The others grumbled in accord and started to settle down for the night. Golem took a large handful of dirt and put out the fire as Hare looked back into the cave where Holly and Genki were.

Boy, she sure is protective of him, Hare thought to himself as he noted that Holly carefully made sure Genki was out of sight, then placed her own sleeping bag at the cave's entrance. Hare smiled, shaking his head as he lay down.


Genocider growled.

"You can't run forever, rebels," he hissed, " I WILL find you, mark my words!"


SF checked the map Hare had stolen carefully.

"Well guys," he said, "the nearest village is not even a mile away from here. Think we should stop by and stock up on supplies?"

"That would be a good idea," Hare answered, stretching. "We gotta make sure Genki's okay though." Hearing this, Holly walked into the cave and over to Genki.

She knelt down by him and asked, "How you feeling, Genki?"

"Ugh.." he replied as Holly sweated.

"Think you can walk?" she questioned.

"I think so.." Genki answered, slowly getting up, holding onto the rock wall and Holly's shoulder for support. He nearly fell as rollerblades started to slip on the granite floor.


"Whoa!" Holly quickly caught him and help straighten himself.

"Need help?" she asked as Genki blushed from embarrassment.

"Yeah, I think so," he replied. Hare watched and grinned to himself, but decided not to make any comments.

"Well, we'd better get going," Gray Wolf spoke up.

"Yeah, let's go," Genki smiled.

"I'll just Teloport us there myself!" SF said, grinning widely. The others nodded and gathered around SF as he concentrated. Soon the group disappeared in a flash of light.


"Do you see the village, chi?" Mocchi asked as Pixie squinted.

"Yeah, it's right ahead," she replied.

"Then let's go."

"Right, Genki." The rebels headed into the village. What they found was not what they expected…

"WHAT HAPPENED HERE?!" Suezo boomed, hopping up and down angrily. The other rebels were almost speechless as they slowly walked into the desolate and decrepit village. Lost Disk scattered the street and Pixie looked disgusted as she pointed out some human bodies lying in the alleys.

"This is sick," Holly said in repulsion. The other mumbled in agreement when Hare pointed.

"Hey! I think that guy's still alive!" he said. Genki snapped his head around in the direction.

"Crap!" he quickly rollerbladed over to the man, who actually turned out to be a boy no older than his late teens. He started hacking up blood as the other rebels ran over.

"Are you all right?" Holly asked as she and Genki knelt down next to the guy. He started to hack up blood as Hare patted him on the back and Genki held his back up a little.

"Monsters…armored monsters…*cough*!" the teen gasped. "Can you tell us exactly what happened here?" Pixie asked in an unusually soft tone.

"A monster….in purple…armor…" he seemed to struggle to remember the name.

"Genocider..?" Tiger supplied. The boy nodded.

"Yes, Genocider…he and *cough* a Reaper … Durahans …Jokers… *hack*! *Cough*! They…came…said they were….*cough, cough* looking for *hack* rebels…we…told them….there….weren't any…*cough* here…Geno *cough* cider…ordered his…*HACK* …troops to … attack … everything… everyone….destroyed…houses...burned…children slaughtered…I …tried to…stop *HACK, HACK* him, Durahan stab-" The young man fell limp as the rebels remained silent. Genki, eyes covered in shadow, laid the boy down and slowly stood up.

"Genki, chi?" Mocchi asked, worried as Genki shook, clenching his fists. Holly stood up and put a hand on Genki's shoulder.

"Genki, are you all right?" she asked, concern in her voice.

"That jerk…!" Genki growled. He looked up, tears welling up in his eyes. "That JERK!!" He suddenly rollerbladed forward swiftly, almost causing Holly to fall over.

"! Genki! Wait! Where are you going?" she ran after him as the monsters stared. "I'm not gonna let Genocider get away with this!" Genki fumed. 'I don't know about you guys, but I'm not gonna hide anymore! I'm goin' straight for Genocider!" he quickened his pace as Holly dashed after him, screaming at him to stop. "Well..?" Hare asked looking at the others. "What are we waiting for? Let's go!" He ran after the humans as the other monsters followed his lead.


"What's that?" A Chariot [Centaur/Durahan] looked up from his watch. "What is what?" he mumbled. His Angolmor [Golem/Joker] companion pointed. "That. It looks like a small group of people or monsters." The Chariot squinted. "Yeah…HEY! Those look like the rebels Master Genocider was telling us to look for!" "Shall we inform him?" "Yes! Let's go now!" The two monsters disappeared.


"Genki…slow…down…" Gray Wolf panted, "…we…really should…get some…rest.." Genki skidded to a stop and looked at his tired friends. He sighed.

"All right. We could use some sleep to refresh ourselves. But first thing when I get up tomorrow, I'm going to keep on looking for Genocider!" The monsters grumbled and sighed, but all walked over to the nearest undergrowth to rest. Holly walked over to Genki as he sat down on a boulder, looking at the evening sky.

"Genki?" he was silent. "Genki?" Nothing. Holly sighed and sat down next to him. "Genki, c'mon, snap out of it," she shook him slightly as he grumbled.

"Genocider…how could do such a thing..?" he angrily growled.

"Genki, you'd better not be planning to do anything reckless," Holly warned. He said nothing. "Genki! I'm serious! Genocider can slice you up in seconds with that sword of his, and Reaper's scythe is no better! Didn't your experience at the camp teach you that?" Genki looked away.

"What would it matter if I was killed or not?" he said darkly. Holly sighed again.

"Because…because I care, Genki. I care about you," she told him.

Genki looked at her and blinked. She put her hand on top of his and looked him straight in the eyes. "I love you, Genki." Genki turned red and looked down.

"Holly, I-"

"And I know how you feel," she went on, "You kind of made that point obvious when you came to take me back from Genocider," Genki turned redder.

"Um, well…"

"Genki, I know you don't want to lose me, and I don't want to lose you," Holly told him," When you were killed by Moo in the last battle, I felt like my heart had been ripped out of my chest. And when you went back to your world… I had no idea how I could go on without you. You have no clue how that feels."

"Actually, I do," Genki replied, "Before I died, I saw the hurt clearly plastered on your face, the tears…I hated myself for it. And went I was back in my world, there wasn't a day that went by that I didn't think about you. Not a day…"

"Well, I don't want to see you suffer, and I don't want my heart torn out again," Holly told him, "So promise me this:" Genki looked at her as she did him, "Promise me that if we find Genocider, you won't do anything foolish. Promise me you'll come out of it alive." Genki paused not even a moment.

"I promise," he replied, kissing her gently on the lips before getting up. "Good night, Holly." He walked over to his sleeping friends as Holly blushed slightly.

"Good night…."


Silver Face stretched and yawned. "C'mon guys, let's go-" Genki was already yards ahead of him. "Hey wait up!"

"Genki! You promised! Remember?" Holly dashed after him as the monsters blinked.

"Promised? Promised what?" Tiger pondered. Hare grinned widely. "I think I know…but I'm not telling!" he laughed. The other monsters sweated and groaned.

Let's just go," Gray Wolf sighed, running after his human companions, the other monsters trailing behind.


"Are you sure this is the place?!"

"Master Genocider told us the rebels would be here soon, so hush! We have to be ready to notify the Master when they arrive!" "Whatever…"

"Hush! Look, I think I see a human coming into view!"

"Should we tell Geno-"

"Hai! Go get him now!"


Genki came to a stop in the middle of a vast and deep gorge. "Hey, whatcha stoppin' for, Genki?" Suezo asked as he hopped over, Holly running up with him. The others soon caught up as Holly tugged on Genki's arm.

"Genki, what's wrong?" she asked. Genki frowned.

"Something's not right…" Tiger and Gray Wolf looked around and growled in agreement.

"Somebody's here, I bet.." Tiger snarled.

"Welcome, rebels. So we meet yet again….hopefully for the last time." The rebels scowled as they looked up to see a smug Genocider standing high above them at the top of the gorge's central northern incline. "Genocider…" Genki hissed.

"Ah yes. The prisoner that…escaped." Genocider smug grin turned into a frown. "Well, your execution was only stalled human, rest assured. I brought some back-up." He sneered as Reaper galloped up. "That's it?!" Hare asked, giggling. "You brought your brother? Against all of us?! How do you expect to win?" Hare burst into hysterical laughter. Reaper himself grinned. However, it was for a very different reason. He motioned his hand forward, and a second later, a Chariot trotted up, hundreds of his kind right behind him. They stopped behind Reaper, and, after a moment's pause, Genocider raised his arm.

Dozens of Battle Rocks and Angolmors stomped over, while Jannes, Lilims, Armored Dragons, Death Dragons, and Jaggernauts all flew to their master. End Bringers, Trickers, Basilisks, Selketos, Sneak Hoppers, Baku Clowns, Tainted Cats, Knight Mocchis, Centurions, Leszienas, Vesuviuses, Hercules, Kelmadics, Durahans, Loricas, Hound Knights, Garudas, Metal Glories; they were all there, numbering in the thousands.

"Hare…remind me to rip your lips off if we live through this," Tiger snarled as Hare saw the army and face-faulted, sweating.

"Troops--" Reaper shouted.

"--ATTACK!!!" Genocider finished, taking his sword out of it sheath and pointing it at the rebels.

"Got any bright ideas, Hare?!"

"I'm thinking, I'm thinking!!" The rabbit monster sweated more. "Um….Golem, Big Blue…you two charge through the middle. Holly, try to get out of the fight while you can. Genki too. The rest of us…get whoever you can without getting sliced and diced, okay?"

"Some plan, bunny!"

"Hey! It's better than nothing!"

The rebels split as the Joker and Durahan breeds charged, full force, into the gorge.

Golem and Big Blue each went on one side, slamming their gigantic rock fist into the oncoming monsters. The action was simple, yet fairly effective, stunning many on the frontline troops and turning others into Lost Disks. It was far from enough to stop the following warriors, however. The two rock giants soon found themselves being swarmed by their enemy. Tiger Gray Wolf and Pixie lent in a hand, zapping many of the badies off with their Lightning attacks or freezing them in place with Blizzard in the Tiger bother's case. A few unfortunate Durahans that got too close to Hare found themselves on the wrong end of a Dragon Punch, crashing into the rock walls.

"CHERRY BLOSOOM BLIZZARD, CHI!!!!" Seven Trickers were blown away into the far distance.

"METEOP SPECIAL!!" Twenty less badies to worry about as they were all crushed.

"EYE BEAM!!" Minus fifteen more badies…

"BROW HIT!!!!!!!!" Thirty more shriveled into Lost Disks, but their comrades just jumped over their remains and attacked the rebels. Holly screamed as a Durahan's blade missed her nose by a few centimeters.

"LEAVE HER ALONE!" Genki leapt up and slammed both feet into the armor monster, sending it into a fatal collision with the gorge side. Genki scooped up Holly and jumped up onto some of the gorge ledges, bringing them away from the battle below…..for the moment. Genki put Holly down and sat, catching his breath.

"We should stay up here for now…" Holly suggested.

"But what about the others?" Genki asked.

"Well, Hare did ask us to stay out of the fight….neither of us is really in any position to battle…" Genki signed and leaned back. "I guess so…"

"AAAAHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" A scythe blade suddenly cut into the rock nearby Holly's feet. Genki growled and looked to see Reaper, who grinned evilly.

"Revenge is mine, humans! Say your last wishes!" He raised his weapon when Genki suddenly kicked him in the chest, making Reaper fly down into the gorge, screaming.

"AAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!" Reaper he fell onto his weapon, cutting deep into his upper body before he turned into a Lost Disk.

"BROTHER!!!!!!!!" Genocider screamed, seeing all this from his perch at the top of the canyon. He glared at Genki, eyes burning with hatred. "For that I will make sure all your friends die painful deaths, human!"

"Oh yeah?!" Genki hopped off, and, right after landing on the ledge below it, grabbed a dead Durahan's sword. He quickly climbed/rollerbladed up the gorge's slope, charging towards Genocider.

"GENKI, NO!!!!! WAIT!!!!!!" Holly shouted after him. Genki looked behind him at her.

"I'm sorry Holly, I have to do this," he apologized, then turned his full attention to Genocider at the top of the gorge. Holly bit her lip.

"Why do you always have to be so reckless…?"


"So, I see you've stolen yourself a sword," Genocider sneered as Genki leapt onto the top of the ravine where the monster was. "The Durahan it belonged to won't be needing it anytime soon," Genki growled, holding the sword in his hands, ready to attack.

"Do you really think you can beat me?" Genocider asked, taking a few steps towards him. Genki went back a few paces.

"What makes you think I can't?" he snapped.

"What makes you think you can?" Genocider fired back. He crouched down, in an-attack ready position.

"I'm like lightning on my blades, Genocider, and that's no bluff," Genki warned, getting ready to protect himself. The Durahan hybrid smirked.

"Well, we'll just see which is superior, human: Your speed, or my skills," Genocider lunged forward at Genki, point aimed at the man's side. Genki dodged the attack just in time and countered with a swing to the neck, which Genocider blocked with a twist of his wrist. Genki turned himself around and blocked the next move, sword clanging against Genocider's.


"What's going on up there?" Tiger looked up with his brother as they heard steel clashing against steel. Hare paused from battling to look as well.

"Is that Genki?"

"It is!"

"Is he insane?!"


The trio dodged an attacking Chariot and zapped in just in time.

"Thanks Suezo."

"Pay more attention next time!"


Genki slammed his sword into Genocider's and pushed hard, trying to make Genocider topple over. The monster was attempting the same, however, resulting in a struggle between the two as they tried to overcome the other. The victor finally proved to be Genocider, as he succeeded in pushing Genki over and into the wall. Genki let out an, "Oof!" as the wind was knocked out of him, his head bleeding from impact.

Genocider grinned and thrust his sword forward, about to slice Genki's stomach open. He was surprised, however, when Genki's sword shot up, knocking the monster's weapon out of his hands.

"I don't think so," Genki growled. He jumped over Genocider's head and skidded to a stop in the rocky ground, placing a hand down for balance. He pushed himself up, sword ready as Genocider picked up his. Genki yelled and charged forward, swinging his blade behind his head, then clanging it with Genocider's once again.

Genki suddenly took Genocider by surprise as he head-butted him in the chest, sending the monster flying over the cliff. Genki rubbed his head and smiled.

"It's over," he panted. He turned around to leave when the sound of laughter stopped him. Confused and started, turned back to see Genocider leap back up onto the cliff.

"Nice try human, but you failed to know one thing," Genocider smirked, "this gorge has many ledges. And as long as there are ledges for foothold and no weight to bear me down, I can easily jump back up! "

Genki cursed to himself as Genocider advanced and he blocked yet again.


"Got anymore bright...ideas…bunny?!"

"Hey, cut me some slack Tiger! We ARE outnumbered here about 900 to 1, you know."


"Um…maybe I shouldn't have mentioned that fact…"


Small pieces of steel chipped off the swords as they slammed into one another again and again. Genocider grinned as he saw sweat start to dribble down Genki's brow and hear him start to lightly pant. The human was tiring. He would use this to his advantage. He swung to left, causing Genki to block almost a second too late, straining the human's muscles more. Genocider repeated the move, only to the right. Genki blocked it once again, only barely. Genocider attacked in a pattern. Left. Right. Left. Right. Over and over. He managed to get a hit in that sliced into Genki's upper left arm.

Genki cried out in pain, gripping his bleeding arm. He quickly shot up and blocked another blow. Genocider could feel the human weakening, getting too used to the automatic left-right blocking maneuvers.

Suddenly, Genocider faked to the right, and Genki instinctively leaned over to block. Genocider saw his opening. As Genki went to block, he left his left side exposed for a second. It was all Genocider needed. Within that quick second, steel met flesh as Genocider's blade impaled Genki's left side.

"AAAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!" Genki's screech of pain echoed off the canyon walls as all the monsters paused their fighting and looked around.

"What the--?"

Genocider laughed as he slowly pulled his sword out of Genki's side. Blood poured out of the human's mouth as he slumped to the ground. Still smirking, Genocider picked up Genki's sword and slowly walked over to the edge of the cliff, looking down at the monsters below.

"Rebels, give up your futile fight!" He shouted down. Tiger snarled.

"Why should we?!" He screamed back up. Genocider sneered.

"Because, my sword is stained with the blood of your leader," he gloated. The monsters stared in disbelief as Holly felt her heart stop.

"YOU LIE!!!!" Gray Wolf howled.

"Don't believe me?" Genocider asked, "here." He threw down the sword Genki had used in battle. It hit the ground with a clang. Then he held up his blood-soaked sword for all to see. "Here is your proof rebels! Your leader is dead! Give up!"

Holly felt herself go into shock as she absentmindedly slumped back against the cold stone of the canyon wall. Mocchi felt his knees buckled along with Hare's as they both tried not to fall to their knees. The rest of the rebels just stood there, staring at the swords with disbelief.

"Genki… could he lose….?" Suezo muttered.

"Just surrender you fools!" Genocider called down.

"Not yet, they won't," a raspy voice said right behind him. "What--" before he could utter another word, Genocider found himself grabbed from behind. Fairly muscular arms wrapped around his chest and waist area, pinning his arms to his sides. He looked to see who it was.

"YOU?! How can you still be alive?!"

"You may have cut me all the way through, Genocider," Genki hissed, "but you missed all my internal organs."


"Look! He's alive!"

"What?!" Holly looked up in shocked to see Genki holding Genocider in a tight grip.

"You'll pay for this!" Genocider growled.

"Maybe so, but not before you die."

"Oh? And how do you plan to accomplish that?"

"Let's see….would 200 or so pounds really weigh you down if you were to fall down this cliff, Genocider?" Genki asked. The badie's eyes snapped, realizing what he meant.

"You fool! You'll just be killing yourself as well!"

"That might be true, but I don't care. As long as you're gone, it does not matter."

"You're insane!"

"Maybe so," Genki replied, swinging his leg over and slamming it into Genocider's, knocking the monster off balance and sending the two of them crashing down the cliffside.

"GENKI!!!!!!!" Holly screamed. The two slammed into a large rock, splitting apart, Genki tumbling one way and Genocider another. Genocider hit a large boulder and shriveled into a Lost Disk. His army stopped and looked around, confused.

"What's going on?" a Jaba [Bajarl/Joker] asked, bewildered.

"Genocider's…dead." A Janne stated flatly.

"GENKI!" Holly screamed again, running over to his still form. The rebel monsters followed her as a Durahan ripped out Genocider's Lost Disk from its root stand.

"Give me Reaper's Lost Disk," he ordered to a Sneak Hopper.

"Which one is it?" the Hopper hybrid asked.

"That one."

"You sure?"

"Positive. I saw Reaper die there."

"Okay…" The Hopper ripped the Lost Disk out and tossed it to the Durahan.

"Thank you," the armor monster said. He held both Disks in one hand then smashed them against the rock wall, shattering them. The rebels stared in shock.

"T-that was your leader's Disk you just destroyed!" Hare exclaimed as he knelt down next to Holly, who was holding Genki's upper body up, trying to get him to wake up.

"I know," Durahan replied.

"B-but why?"

"I'd like to thank you all," the monster continued, "Genocider had control over all of our minds."

"Say what?" Suezo asked.

"That's why Genocider only used Durahan and Joker hybrids," a voice coughed.

"Genki! You're okay!" Holly sobbed, hugging him lightly.

"*Cough* For the moment, anyway….but I'm right, aren't I, Durahan?" the knight monster nodded.

"Hai. He wasn't an ordinary Genocider. For some reason, he had excessively powerful Joker traits, and some characteristics that were only his. He had power over any monster that has at least half the same blood as he did. He used us all in his army against our will…we had no power over it….once again, thank you for defeating him. We'll leave you be now." He turned to leave when Genki started hacking up blood.


"Genki, let me see that wound," Holly carefully helped Genki move his arm as Hare looked at the deep lesion in the young man's side.

"Mmm…you were right……doesn't look like any organs were hit….but if we don't get that sealed within the next few hours, you're gonna die from blood loss."

"Thanks Hare, I feel sooo much better," Genki replied sarcastically.

"What are we going to do?" Holly asked, close to tears, "we're nowhere near any medical buildings, and how can we give Genki back the blood he needs?"

"Perhaps we can help," the Durahan said, stepping up, "All of us can Teloport-"

"-Which reminds me," Tiger cut in, "how were you all able to Teloport?!"

"Something Genocider did," Janne quickly explained, "he used his mind powers to tap into our brains and enable us to Teloport. I don't know much more than that. Now, do you want us to help your friend or not?"

"Please, yes," Holly said as Tiger grumbled. "what can you do?"

"Besides us being able to bring you to a hospital quickly," Durahan said, "I know a certain medical place where they have some instruments from the Ancient's time, one of them being an IV tube…" Holly blinked.

"IV…tube?" she asked.

"I know what it is," Genki replied hoarsely, "they have it in my world…it can give a patient blood or nutrients through the bloodstream when needed…I'll explain…later….*HACK!*"

"We'd better go now," Hare said, feeling a bit frantic. Durahan nodded.

"Right." He looked at the other Joker/Durahan hybrids. "You all can go, I'll take them." He turned back to the rebels. "Gather close together, or I won't be able to Teloport all of us."

Golem and Big Blue stomped over with the other rebels and stood as close together as they could as Durahan concentrated hard.

"TELOPORT!" he shouted. The group disappeared in a flash of light.


"Here you are," the Durahan motioned towards the building in front of them.

"Thanks for your help," Hare said as he, Golem (carrying Genki) and Holly dashed to the door to get inside. Durahan sweated as the other rebels quickly followed suite.



Holly sighed as the doctor walked into the room.

"Did he lose consciousness again?" she asked.

"Yeah," the doctor nodded, "but the good news is that we've gotten the hole completely sealed and the IV's given back about a half a quarter of the blood he's lost. Hopefully, at this rate, he'll regain all the blood he lost within the next few days."

"Thank you," Holly muttered, sitting down as the doctor left the room.

"Boy, you sure are jittery Holly," SF commented.

"Hey, leave her alone!" Suezo growled, "Can't you see she's stressed?"

"It's okay Suezo," Holly said softly, "SF's right, I do feel a bit eedgy."

"Really worried about Genki, huh?" Hare asked, grinning and eyebrows raised. Holly blushed and looked down, silent.

"So, did you two smoochie?" Hare asked, smiling more.


"Ha! I knew it!" Hare cried, jumping up and down.

Tiger growled, "Would you calm down, bunny?"

"Aw c'mon Tiger, aren't you happy too?"

"I guess."

"Ooohhh, Mr. Tough-guy with no feelings for others, eh?"

"What's that?!"

"You heard me!"

"SHUT-UP, BOTH OF YOU!!" Pixie fumed. Tiger and Hare fell silent.


"He started it!"

"Did not!"

"Did too!"









"Ya know what?" A charred Hare asked a many hours later, "why didn't the Phoenix come and help us in the last battle this time? I mean, he brought Genki back, but he couldn't help us?! What's up with that?"

"I don't know," Holly sighed, looking at the door to Genki's room. How long is he gonna be out of it? She wondered. As if right on cue, the doctor walked out again.

"Well, he's now regained almost half of his blood lost now," he said, "and…"

"And what?" Holly asked, looking up.

"…And he's awake again. Would any of you wish to see him?"

"Go ahead Holly," Pixie said, smiling, "I think you're the one who wants to see him the most right now." Holly looked at Pixie and smiled back.

"Thank you." She walked past the doctor and into the room. Holly took a seat in the chair next to the bed as Genki looked up at her.

"Hey Holly."

"How you feeling?" she asked.

"Ok, I guess."

"You guess?"

"Well, I DID get impaled, you know." Genki stated a bit less than seriously. Holly smiled slightly, knowing Genki was trying to make her feel a bit better. "So, what are the others up to?"

"Well, quite a while ago, Tiger and Hare were fighting--"

"Anything happen that's not predictable?" Holly laughed.

"Well, Mocchi feel asleep, but I guess that's something you'd expect to happen after sitting in a waiting room for over 8 hours…

"8 hours?! Is that how long I've been out of it?!" Genki exclaimed.

"No, longer…almost half a day since you last lost conciseness, I believe."


"Yeah, I know…"

"I must've really worried you. I'm sorry."

"It's not your fault about that," Holly reassured him. Then she raised an eyebrow. "But going after Genocider like you did, that's different…" Genki rubbed his neck sheepishly.

"Well, I uh…"

"Genki, why did you have to break your promise?" Genki looked away.

"I'm very sorry Holly, but Genocider sparked the anger inside me, and I knew I just had to stop him. My only thought was as I snuck up behind him after he impaled me was what he might do to you and the monsters if he wasn't killed."

"Well, you're lucky you came out of that alive," Holly told him, scolding him slightly, "Do you have any idea what it felt like for me when you went slamming down the cliffside with Genocider?"

"I'm sorry….well, at least I'm still here, right?" Holly sighed.

"Yeah, that's true, but---" Holly found herself cut off and Genki leaned over and kissed her, causing the young woman to blush furiously.

"Ha! I knew it!" The couple looked over to see Hare standing at the doorway, the other monsters behind him, all grinning. The couple broke away, both blushing now.

"Hare!!!" Genki growled. Hare waved his paw.

"Yeah, yeah, whatever." He mumbled. "We'll just leave you two love birds alone," Laughing, the rabbit closed the door behind him, Genki still growling.

"Genki, forget about it. You know what Hare's like. He'll stop teasing when he gets over it." Genki sighed and leaned back.

"Yeah, I guess your right…"

"What, no smoochies?" Hare peeked his head back inside.


"Genki! Stop! You'll hurt yourself!" Holly sweated and held him back as Genki was ready to pounce on Hare.

"Grrr…ow! Owowowowow! My side!"

"I told you…"


"Ha ha!"






"Bored, Mocchi?"


"I'll take that as a 'yes'….."

"Well, nothing much is happening at the moment…"

"Very true, Gray Wolf...."

"Oy… much longer 'till we can leave this camp?"

"Oh sure Suezo, first you want to leave the hospital ASAP, now we're out because the doctors said I'm healthy enough to leave, but you're still not happy?!"


"Ow…my ears…"

"What's all the yelling about?" Holly lifted up the tent flap and walked inside.

"Nothing much Miss Holly," SF told her, "Suezo's just whining again."


"Suezo, please, not now…"

"Sorry Holly." Holly sighed and knelt down next to Genki.

"So, how you feeling now?"

"Other than the fact Suezo almost burst my eardrums, fine." Genki replied.

"Does anything still hurt?"

"Not too much."

"All right. Good."

"So, what did you come in here for?"

"Oh, right! I brought you some tea, Genki. Golem thought it may make you feel a little better."

"Thanks Holly," Genki took a sip of the still-steaming tea. "This is good. Did Golem make it?"

"Actually, I did. I was giving out some to the group outside, and Golem was the one who suggested I give you some." Holly told him. Genki smiled.

"Ah. Well, like I said, it's really good. Just like your food always is." Holly blushed slightly at the compliment.

"Thank you, Genki."

"No problem."

"Hey guys!" Hare hopped into the room as everyone looked at him.

"What is it?" Holly asked.

"You're not gonna believe me, but…" Hare started.

"But what?" Genki asked, cocking and eyebrow.

"The Phoenix is outside, and he wants Genki." Hare finished.

"WHAT?!" the others exclaimed. Hare shrugged.

"That's all he'd say. He wants Genki to come out." The others looked at Genki, whose face drooped. He was pretty sure what that reason was. "I'm coming," he said, slowly trying to pull himself up. Genki slowly followed Hare out the tent, the others right behind. Sure enough, the Phoenix stood there in the middle of camp.

He greeted.

"What do you want?" Genki asked, skipping a "hello."

Genki looked back at his friends, then at the Phoenix.

"But I can't just-"

"Before anybody goes anywhere," Hare cut in, "I'd like to know one thing, Phoenix."

"WHY DIDN'T YOU HELP US IN THE BATTLE?!" The Phoenix sweated and coughed.

"Say what?" Pixie blinked.

"Did you find them?" Big blue asked.

Holly gasped and looked at Genki, tears welling in her eyes.

"B-but...I can't go!" Genki exclaimed. "What about my friends?"

The Phoenix said.

"Can't…can't I just be returned home briefly to tie things up, and then return here?" Genki asked desperately. The Phoenix shook his head.


Genki sighed and looked down.

"Mocchi," he said, quickly wiping away a few tears, "go get my things please."

"But Genki…"

"Please." Mocchi nodded and ran back into the tent. The others remained silent, staring at Genki sadly. A few moments later, Mocchi returned with all of Genki's things stuffed into his backpack.

"Here you are Genki. Chi." Genki took it from Mocchi and carefully put it on.

"Thanks Mocchi."

"Chi.." Genki sighed and slowly climbed on the Phoenix's back, carefully avoiding his friend's eyes.

"Genki." He finally looked up to see Holly's tear-blurred eyes.

"Holly, I'm so sorry," he said softly, holding her hand for a moment, "but I don't have a choice. I would stay if I could, but…."

"I know," Holly said regretfully, feeling as if her heart were about to shatter. "I'll never forget you, Genki." She planted a kiss on his lips before parting with him, the Phoenix spreading his wings and starting to taking off.

"Goodbye you guys," Genki waved to his monster friends, now unable to hold back the tears.

"See ya, kid." Tiger said, eyes wavering along with Gray Wolf's and Hare's.

"Bye, chi." Mocchi wiped away a tear.

"Take care, you hear?" SF smiled, though his face was sad.

"Golem miss you."

"Goodbye kid." Suezo put on a fake smile.

"Goodbye Genki. ……….Master Pixie, aren't you going to-"

"Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know. See ya around, Genki."

"Goodbye everyone, I'll miss you all," Genki waved once again, tears blurring his vision. The Phoenix flew higher, quickening his speed. The two where almost out of site within a moment.

"Goodbye…" Holly whispered, standing there for a moment. She looked down, eyes covered in shadow, tears hitting the ground. Hare walked over to her.

"Holly, are you okay?" he asked. No reply other than soft sobbing.

"Hare, let her be for a while," Suezo told the rabbit, whose ears drooped, slowly following his friends back to the middle of camp.


Genki had kept his eyes on the spot where Holly had stood until he could see her no more. He sighed, wiping all the tears out of his eyes, and facing his head forward again.

Minna…why can't I stay with you all? The Phoenix says I'm going home, but…… He looked back one more time. Why do I keep thinking I'm about to leave it instead of returning to it?


*Waving arms around frantically* THAT'S NOT THE END!!! DON'T KILL ME YET!!! WAIT FOR THE EPILOGUE!!!!

Well, I was disappointed that there weren't so many reviews at first last time, so…you won't know how it ends until I get 7 reviews/e-mailed comments, at the least.

Army of Steel: Epilogue ~ "Home Again"

ANFA: Just read! Y'all were gonna kill me if I left it at part 9, so here's the end. :p It's short, but it wraps everything up. ^_^


A month had past since Genki had gone back to his world with the Phoenix. To Holly, it had seemed like a century. A century of misery. Silver Face had left to go back to his old village, but promised to visit occasionally. Pixie and Big Blue decided they would travel around a little before coming back to Holly's village, Tiger and Gray Wolf going with them. Golem, Hare, Mocchi, and of course Suezo, all stuck with Holly, taking every chance they got to try to get her out of her depression. So far, nothing had worked.

This morning, the monsters were all still asleep, and the young woman, not being able to slumber herself, decided to go out for a walk through the empty fields, like she did many mornings these days. The sun had barely begun to rise, though it was hard to tell it had risen at all. Clouds loomed in the sky, blocking out the light. It was early. Almost everyone nearby would still be in bed, so Holly would be alone.

Just like she had felt for the past month. Alone. Holly sighed, walking through the meadow of tall grass. As the sky became darker, like Holly's heart, she sat down in the tall grass, looking at the ground, thoughts and memories streaming into her brain. As more memories came by, Holly found tears begin to stream down her face. Genki……..She sighed. Why…..? Her teardrops hit the grass softly, splattering against some of the morning dew.

"What's the matter, Holly? Something get in your eyes?" a voice asked behind her. Holly felt her heard stop as she slowly turned her head around. A few yards away, leaning against the only tree in the meadow, stood Genki, arms folded and smiling teasingly. She gaped at him, then rubbed her eyes, making sure what she was seeing wasn't her eyes playing tricks on her.

"Oh, you're not dreaming, Holly," Genki said, his grin widening. "It's me."

"Oh…my…God." Holly gasped. She stood up and dashed over to him, running right into his open arms. Genki held her in a tight hug as she began to cry into his chest.

"Oh my God….oh my God," she sobbed over and over.

"It's okay Holly, I'm here now," Genki said gently, stroking her hair. Holly looked up at him, the tear glistening in her brown eyes.

"W-what are you doing back?" she asked shakily. "I-I thought the Phoenix said he didn't have the energy to bring you back…"

"He didn't," Genki replied as Holly blinked, confused.

"Wha? But then how did you--"

"Oh, the Phoenix didn't bring me back," Genki replied, grinning even more. He remembered exactly what had happened that day the Phoenix had brought him back…


Genki had kept his eyes on the spot where Holly had stood until he could see her no more. He sighed, wiping all the tears out of his eyes, and facing his head forward again.

[Minna..........why can't I stay with you all? The Phoenix says I'm going home, but.................... He looked back one more time. Why do I keep thinking I'm about to leave it instead of returning to it?] Suddenly, an idea hit him.

"Say, Phoenix," he started.

"How much energy will the Cinder Bird and Blue Phoenix have after they revive all the lost monsters?"

The Phoenix told him.

"Is that enough to transport people back here from another world?"

Genki smiled.

"Well then, I think I've got an idea……."


"But a month..?" Holly asked. Genki laughed.

"Hey, it takes longer to get everything tied up back home than you may think," he told her, winking.

"How'd your family take it? For that matter, how did you explain it all to them?" Genki smiled and kissed her softly.

"The story of the end of my life there, Holly," he told her, "is a story for another day……. But there is one thing that I will say."

"What's that?" Holly asked, looking up at him again. Genki wrapped an arm around her shoulders.

"Our life together….our story…has just begun." He answered. Holly smiled, resting her head on his shoulder as they walked back to the house, the clouds in the sky beginning to clear up as the sun broke through, shining down in front of them, as if to show them the way.


Like I said, short, but it wraps everything up. Hope you enjoyed it, minna! ^_~ Sorry to say, but other than LBS, I don't have any plans for more series at the moment. Doesn't mean I'm gonna stop writing though. I got quite a handful of songs I'd like to place into a fanfic. ^_^ So don't be surprised if I start tossin' up some songfics. ^_^ Of course, I have a lot of things to do, and Writer's Block may plague me again, (Ugh. X___X) so don't be surprised if you don't get any fanfics out of me for a little while, either. I hope it's choice A tho, cuz I love writing, and I love getting such good feedback. ^_^ So please e-mail me with your comments or send in your reviews. ^_~ See ya later minna, and I hope it's not too long before I do!

- Holly-chan