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Munch's Make Believe Gundam Fight
Summary: Although make believe / it's still unfortunately / SRT canon - a haiku.
Who: Leo Stenbuck, Eric the Viking, Amuro Ray, Rei Ayanami
When: February 23, 2009
Where: Neo Chuck E. Chheze, Manchester


MANCHESTER, NEO CHUCK E. CHHEZE (the e stands for everlasting)

"And so a' you see, Mr. A'The Viking," explains the British Italian Manager, Mario Morrissey, "You have to a'marry my daughter, you ate'a the whole Birth'a'day pizza by'a yourself! The prize is'a my daughter!"

Eric the Viking sips a delightful mixture of vodka, gunpowder and caribou blood from the empty Chuck E. Cheeze mascot head. "Why do you not give me some of those delightful... tickets? I wish to buy a rubber ball, perhaps a glow stick. That would be acceptable."

"But Eric A'the Viking, you are'a big'a time celebrity! You must'a marry m daughter-- Princess'a Marie Morrissey!"

Eric the Viking thinks quickly, and points across the restuarant to Leo Stenbuck, who also finished a Birthday Pizza. "He finished one as well. We cannot /both/ marry her." Eric's eyes hum an electric blue against his pale skin as he shoots psychic viking daggers at Leo Stenbuck.


Alerted by Eric the Viking's stare, and shortly the stares of Mario Morrissey and several thirteen-year-old girls, Leo Stenbuck looks up from the greasy platter that once held his Birthday Pizza. This wasn't part of the plan; he was here to observe the Viking in his natural habit, not marry the daughter of a restauranteur!

"I, uh, I've got a girlfriend," Leo replies, scooting to the side and wrapping an arm around the shoulders of Rei Ayanami. Her presence is one of convenience; the Littlest Titan's job prevents him from spending overmuch time with his girlfriend, so any opportunity to combine work and play is one he leaps on. "See? So... so you can marry her."

Oh God please don't let him notice who I am please please please. "Thanks, though," Leo adds, after an awkward pause. A single bead of sweat rolls down his forehead, the only indication of his anxiety. That and the shaking like a baby rabbit in a crank-driven swimsuit dryer.


"How many daughters do you /have/, Mario?" Amuro asks lightly, one leg dangling over the arm of his chair at Eric's table. "I mean, you've been doing this thing for how many years now?" He reaches up to dab at his chin with a dingy off-white napkin that is the staple napkin of Neo Chuck E. Chheze.

"I mean, either that or your daughter gets divorced a lot..." he muses. Mario shoots him a glare, but Amuro hardly seems to notice. This is a delicate dance that has taken place between the Hero of the One Year War and the owner/manager of this classy establishment for nigh on 8 years. "Don't worry, Eric. Worst comes to worst, you have a night of fun then get an annulment. I know a guy." He reaches into his ARMY jacket and pulls out a much-used divorce lawyer card, sliding it across the table towards Eric.

At the same moment, a white bolt flashes across his consciousness, and he turns... noticing Leo Stenbuck and his date at a table across the room. The boy seems... almost familiar. Almost... famlial??


Rei Ayanami is wearing NERV-dictated play-date attire; that is, clothing Misato or someone stole from Asuka with the intent to hopefully return it before the redhead notices. As such, the frail little blue-haired girl wears a bright yellow spring dress that suits her about as well as panties suit a goat. She has barely touched her personal pan pizza, even though it is like six inches in diameter and only four slices. "If you are required by this strange institution's customs to wed her, Leo Stenbuck," Rei says tonelessly, "I will not stand in your way. I do not want to hinder your development as a man."

"I also have a girlfriend, /boy/. That girlfriend's name is plunder and pillage. Let me ammend that. I have two girlfriends. The other one's name is looting and rape. So we are both in /very/ committed relationships," Eric the Viking says, rising from the wooden party pizza parlor bench and towering over everyone in the room (except some mascots, children standing on each other's shoulders and the pink flamingo chained to the radiator).


"You a'not'agonna insult'a me!" Mario Morrissey says, his mustache twirling on his face like a helicopter blade.

"No, we will not, Mario Morrissey... we will solve this like /men/," Eric says loudly, pointing at Leo and consuming the rest of his mascot-head-full-of-some-liquor-and-less-healthy-things, "even though he is clearly a /boy/."

Eric the Viking kicks over the table Amuro Ray is still sitting at, but mostly away from Amuro and not onto him, which is just Amuro's blind newtype luck and not any charity on Eric's part.

"I challenge you, /boy/, to a GUNDAM FIGHT. The loser... marries Marie Morrissey."

Eric the Viking thoughtfully fingers his second divorce offense card. :)


Leo gives Rei a look somewhere between amused and lovestruck. "No, it's... it's fine," he assures her, shaking his head. "I'm sure if--" He stops cold when Eric the VIking calls him a boy, his train of thought interrupted by the sudden noise and the bright yellow exclamation point above his head. "I'm /not/ a kid!!" Leo roars, rising sharply to his feet.

As if to prove it, he hauls Rei to her feet as well and gives her an overly emphatic kiss the likes of which is generally considered implote to perform in public. Then he shoves her back down onto the booth bench, grabs the table in front of him, and shoves it to the ground. It flips entirely over, and Rei's personal pan pizza splatters across the ground into a cross-shaped smear of tomato sauce.

"YOU'RE ON!" Leo Stenbuck bellows, pointing accusingly at Eric the Viking. "I ACCEPT YOUR CHALLENGE, ERIC THE VIKING!" Eyes afire, Leo thrusts his fist into the air and screams, "RISE, GUNDAM!!"

Behind Leo and Rei's half-booth, the wall of the Neo Chuck E. Chheze explodes into splinters of wood and broken skiball machines as the Vic Viper rises out of the earth, arms crossed across its chest. Leo lingers a moment to give Amuro Ray an appraising stare, eyes narrowing, and then he turns and sprints for the LEV. "Wait here, Rei! This won't take long!"


"That boy... Leo... Stenbuck..." Amuro mutters, a frown creasing his forehead. "The rumour..."

He looks up (way up) as Eric stands, and shakes his head. "I mean if you guys are going to Gundam FIght maybe you should go outs--" BOOM the V2 crashes through the wall, and Amuro Ray sighs. "/This/ is why people hate the Gundam Fight."

At Leo's proclamation of speed, the White Devil can't help but chuckle. "I bet you say that to all the girls."


Violently kissed -- Rei is too polite to point out that Leo is hurting her face, the way he grabs it while thrusting his tongue into her mouth -- and then shoved back onto her ass, Rei does not seem to have been affected in any significant way by this development, and she resumes quietly sitting, as before.


"RISE, VIKING GUNDAM!"

Just then, a gigantic boat bursts out of the earth, filling the immediate area with black water. Luckily Neo Chuck E. Cheeze benches are equipped with floatation devices. Eric the Viking stands on the head of Viking Gundam (Raid Mode), as its oars push into the inky water and the ground below it. Souls of the damned cry out from below decks, not able to row fast enough to feed the void that is Viking Gundam.

Eric the Viking spreads his arms and falls back into the Mobile Fighter's mouth, which swallows him. Moments later, he is being wrapped in a mobile trace suit, which makes disgusting latex noises. Instead of whining like a pussy or a Domon, Eric the Viking drinks a 2 gallon jug of meadnog, which is fourteen parts mead and 1 part chocolate skim milk. As soon as his trace suit is complete, latex slapping him playfully on the ass, a giant fur cape is lowered onto Eric's shoulders.

Viking Gundam rows forward, displacing water and spraying wood, earth and delicious toppings everywhere. The Mobile Fighter's mouth opens again-- but this time instead of swallowing it is vomiting, which is the anti-swallowing. But it's not vomit it's NAPALM which is even worse than vomit if you ask me.


Eric the Viking's Viking Gundam transforms into its Viking Gundam Raid mode.

COMBAT: Eric the Viking has attacked Leo Stenbuck. Flamethrower added to their queue. COMBAT: Eric the Viking has missed Leo Stenbuck with his Flamethrower attack.


Leo Stenbuck's entry into the Vic Viper is not nearly so dynamic. He reaches the rising LEV just as its enormous cockpit (lol) clears ground level. It levers open with a hydraulic hiss as he approaches, and he vaults into the cockpit, spinning to land sitting neatly in the cockpit seat. The cockpit hatch closes again, and the Viper finishes powering up as it finishes its rise from the earth.

As the Viking Gundam's mouth begins spewing what color commentators will later call 'holy shit, fucking napalm,' the Vic Viper lifts its left hand, palm outwards. A spherical shield of yellow energy pops into existence around the LEV, and the flames wash over it harmlessly, turning the ball of yellow light into a ball of horrible flames. After a moment, the shield disappears, as the Viper lowers its hand. It takes the fire with it.

"COMING CLOSE!!" Leo roars. The verniers on the Viper's shoulders and hips flare to life and it rockets forwards, closing the relatively miniscule space between it and the Viking Gundam in roughly the time it takes a hummingbird to flip the fuck out because holy shit, giant robots are fighting in that Neo Chuck E. Chheze. The force of its thrusters blows away cars in the parking lot behind it, SUVs rolling end over end like they were in a Neo Michael Bay movie.

The LEV stops sharply once within arms reach of the Viking Gundam, cocking its arm back to strike. As it does, yellow light not only encases its fist, but flares up around its entire midsection, electricity crackling across its hull. It's very impressive special effects, despite being for what boils down to punching a boat in the mouth really hard.


COMBAT: Leo Stenbuck has attacked Eric the Viking. Burst Punch added to their queue. COMBAT: Leo Stenbuck has struck Eric the Viking with a solid hit using Burst Punch. COMBAT: Eric the Viking has counter attacked for a solid hit using Heat Oar!


Amuro Ray stands on top of a floating wooden table. There are also three buxom waitresses on the same table. Why they are on that table and not on the far superior floatation dinghies in the kitchen is a /mystery/.


PREVIOUSLY

Eric the Viking drinks the blood of an endangered albino cave bat from a juicebox, chasing it with an entire bottle of Manchester Headmaster Grog. As he snaps the neck of the Chuck E. Cheeze band member designated as the 'keytar player' and takes his fake plastic head and keytar.

"This keytar is... cardboard..." Eric says, playing the fake instrument along to the blaring pre-recorded Chuck E. Thrash track, "...but my licks are so hot. I approve." Eric the Viking taps out a wicked keytar solo, his gorgeous blonde hair blowing to the left as the fans and fog machines come to life. "I never knew I could play so well! Amuro Ray, throw me your underwear!"

NOW

Viking Gundam is hit squarely in the face. This is a pretty awesome feat, considering it is a robot torso sticking out of a giant boat, and that makes it really, really big. With delayed reaction, a heat oar is drawn and swiped at the Vic Viper. Viking Gundam's one eye pulses, illuminating the cracks in its faceplate.

"I enjoyed your Gay Pride Glow Punch, child," Eric says, drinking Tequila from an empty hand grenade, "But will you enjoy... THE ELBOW OF ODIN??"

It's really just Viking Gundam throwing a mosh-pit elbow.


COMBAT: Eric the Viking has attacked Leo Stenbuck. Viking Striking added to their queue. COMBAT: Eric the Viking has struck Leo Stenbuck with a glancing hit from their Viking Striking attack! COMBAT: Leo Stenbuck has counter attacked for a minor hit using School of Chibodee Crockett!


PREVIOUSLY

Amuro Ray throws his underwear to Eric the Viking, without even taking off his pants.

NOW

Amuro Ray has trouble bending his left leg.


Rei Ayanami floats, occasionally paddling back to roughly the geographic coordinates Leo told her to wait when she begins to drift too far.


The Viking Gundam's heat oar cracks solidly into the Vic Viper's shoulder, shearing off a large hunk of armor that falls into the water below, sending waves crashing all throughout the restaurant. The Viper reels for a moment, stunned by the blow, but it recovers just before Eric the Viking unleashes the Elbow of Odin, its right hand rising to catch the worst of the elbow even as its left snaps outwards into the Viking Gundam's face again.

Leo doesn't have anything to drink, or anything to drink it out of, so he just screams wordlessly in response to Eric the Viking. Undeterred by the large dent left by the Viking Gundam's elbow, the Viper draws back its right arm again, locking it at the elbow and swinging it downwards at the Gundam's stomach, bobbing and weaving back and forth in the air in front of its huge boat.

As the fight rages on, somewhere in the kitchen something explodes, and from the rear of the flooded restaurant comes a wave of flame, creeping mysteriously slowly across the surface of the water as the liquid begins to burn. It is almost without doubt the touch of Loki, the Trickster God, who for eons has seen to it that wherever a viking does battle, at least something is on fire. Usually a small child or beloved pet.


COMBAT: Leo Stenbuck has attacked Eric the Viking. Right Hook added to their queue. COMBAT: Leo Stenbuck has struck Eric the Viking with a solid hit using Right Hook. COMBAT: Eric the Viking has counter attacked for a minor hit using Battleaxehandle!


COMBAT: Eric the Viking has activated a spirit command. COMBAT: Eric the Viking has activated a spirit command.


The right hook smashes into Viking Gundam's stomach, wood paneling splintering into the flaming black water, creating floating toxic bonfires in the wayward party palace. A giant knuckleprint is left, like some sort of alien fist crater that humanity will always wonder about. Sparks fizzle out of the wound, starting even tinier fires, which shroad the bow of Viking Gundam's boatpart.

"Hrrrgn, not bad, Small Boy. But it will take more than the Fists of Ragnarok to defeat Eric The Viking! For ERIC THE VIKING does not believe even in his own religion-- and I am ERIC THE VIKING!"

A heat is in each of Viking Gundam's hands now, both glowing white at both of their blades. When they touch the black water, steam rises and clouds the hellpit that was once a fun place for families into a fogbath. The heat oar blades come togther like scissors, trying to bleed into the Vic Viper as much as possible.


COMBAT: Eric the Viking's My Boat Runneth Over has been added to your queue. COMBAT: Eric the Viking has attacked Leo Stenbuck. My Boat Runneth Over added to their queue.

COMBAT: Leo Stenbuck has activated a spirit command.

COMBAT: Eric the Viking has struck Leo Stenbuck with a glancing hit from their My Boat Runneth Over attack!


Amuro Ray has one of the waitresses paddle the rescue table over towards Rei Ayanami's position, which is being overtaken by the fire. The White Devil produces a length of rope and tosses it down towards the blue-haired girl. "Grab on, I hear you're water-soluble," he calls.

The fire creeps closer.


Rei does as Amuro asks -- surely, if anyone's authority supercedes Leo's, it's his dad's.


Leo's eyes widen in terror as the Viking Gundam lifts its two heat oars. As the implements come together like the scissors of the sea, the Vic Viper's hands snap out to its sides, flaring up with yellow light. Each hand catches the head of an oar, and for a moment, all four weapons lock, sparks spraying into the air. The actual fists have no trouble containing the heat oars... but the pressure on them is so great that the Viper's arms begin emitting a metallic squeal and compress into its torso, armor bending and cracking.

"I don't care if you /are/ Eric the Viking, Gundam Fighter for Neo Norway!" Leo shouts. As he speaks, he takes a moment to survey the array of multimonitors in his cockpit, displaying secondary camera feeds. That oddly familiar man who was with Eric, Rei floating in black water, a slowly advancing wall of flame, a bunch of little ki-

He's a moment away from panicking when two of the feeds converge as Amuro comes to Rei's rescue. Leo makes a note to figure out who that strapping gentlemen is and thank him, and then returns his attention to the matter at hand. "Eric the Viking may be a legend, but I am... I AM... THE LEGEND KILLER!!" In truth, Leo's always found the nickname a handful of pilots attributed to him after his defeat of the Granzon a little cheesy, but he really, really wanted to say something cool, especially with Rei watching.

The Viper shoves outwards, finally ending the lock between its fists and the Viking Gundam's heat oars. In the moment of time provided to it, it draws its right hand close to its side once again, verniers flaring to life and filling the ruins of the Neo Chuck E. Chheze with a high-pitched howl. For a full second, the Viper doesn't move despite the roar of its thrusters.

And then it does, its hand swinging outwards and upwards in a vicious, rocket-propelled uppercut at the Viking Gundam's right shoulder, Leo screaming wordlessly once again.


COMBAT: Leo Stenbuck has attacked Eric the Viking. The Legend Killer added to their queue.

COMBAT: Eric the Viking has activated a spirit command.

COMBAT: Leo Stenbuck has struck Eric the Viking with a solid hit using The Legend Killer. COMBAT: Eric the Viking has missed Leo Stenbuck with his Head Vulcans counter attack.


The raven mounted on Viking Gundam's left shoulder just explodes, razor feathers both slicing through the air and falling into the water like delicate leaves. As the raven departs, a small explosion destroys Viking Gundam's entire right shoulder, its arm hanging limply at its side.

"I do not believe in legends, child. I do not believe in anything, unless I choose to believe in it. Do you understand? Perhaps later I will believe in legends... but for now... I BELIEVE IN THE VOID, WHICH IS WHERE YOU ARE HEADED!"

Using the blade of a heat oar, Viking Gundam severs its own right arm. Within seconds, heat oars are fastened to the amputated robo limb, and it comes flying at Stenbuck's Vic Viper like some sort of horrifying pagan boomerhang, all heat oars and twitching phantom limbs!

"GRAAAGH!"


COMBAT: Eric the Viking has activated a spirit command.

COMBAT: Eric the Viking has attacked Leo Stenbuck. Armarang added to their queue. COMBAT: Eric the Viking has missed Leo Stenbuck with his Armarang attack. COMBAT: Leo Stenbuck has counter attacked for a minor hit using Gravity Bullet!


The Vic Viper dashes backwards when the Viking Gundam severs its own arm; presumably, the pilot has gone mad and will destroy himself in a violent tantrum shortly. Sadly for him, Leo's prediction proves false, and rather than watch Eric the Viking tear his own body apart he has a severed limb covered in superheated oars thrown at him.

Luckily, that was his second guess. The Viper's right arm draws back yet again, being a necessary part of almost its entire stable of moves, and slams outwards palm open. A spatial distortion ripples through the burning, flooded building, and a bolt of writhing yellow light erupts from the Vic Viper's palm. It impacts with the Armarang halfway between the Gundam and the Vic Viper, and both projectiles explode in a brilliant flash of light. So great is the force of the Gravity Bullet that a wave of kinetic energy crashes into the Viking Gundam a moment after the collision, though it is little more than a distraction.

"I told you, I'm NOT A KID!" Leo screams. The Viper lifts its fist skyward, and space ripples again, this time around the Viper. Its Options pop into existence, four floating objects obscured entirely by clouds of bright light; currently they glow bright yellow. Once present, they begin to slowly circle the LEV.

"I'M AN ADULT! AND MY NAME... IS... LEOOOOOOO!!" Months of frustration at being called 'Stenbuck' surface at once, and the Viper swings its arm downwards. The Options surrounding it rush forwards one by one, slamming themselves at the Viking Gundam like the enormous blunt objects they are and then rebounding or circling back to resume orbitting the Vic Viper.

One of them ruins one of the still-standing walls on its way back, spraying debris out into an adjacent building, shattering windows and punching holes in the walls.


COMBAT: Leo Stenbuck has attacked Eric the Viking. Option Varrior Strike added to their queue. COMBAT: Leo Stenbuck has struck Eric the Viking with a major critical hit using Option Varrior Strike. COMBAT: Eric the Viking has missed Leo Stenbuck with his Heat Oar counter attack.


Pulling Rei up onto the table, Amuro Ray looks up and sighs. "They're in such a hurry to grow up these days..." he laments. "If only they realised... life is in the beauty of each moment."

There is an orchestral sting.


The options pound into Viking Gundam, not a single one misses, not a single one even glances. When the smoke clears, Viking Gundam resembles a skerletal viking warrior impaled on the front of a doom ship, twitching wires coiling at one another like cannibal snakes. Its one eye glows redder, bathing the black water, fire and smoke in its netherwordly crimson.

From below decks, an ancient viking rowing chant begins to filter out through holes in the Mobile Fighter's armor. It's unclear what is actually down there, but the reverberating voices sing atonally, growing louder and louder...

With its one remaining skeleton arm, Viking Gundam plucks four Heat Oars and throws them one after another, like some sort of dark age uzi filled with paddles that are also superweapons. They hiss through the air, the last one breaking the sound barrier as it soars toward the Vic Viper.


COMBAT: Eric the Viking has activated a spirit command.

COMBAT: Eric the Viking has attacked Leo Stenbuck. Heat Oar Super Throw added to their queue. COMBAT: Eric the Viking has struck Leo Stenbuck with a devastating hit using Heat Oar Super Throw!


A pure black silhouette against a background of solid red, the Vic VIper recoils violently as the first of Eric the Viking's heat oars pierces its chest, the implement stopping halfway through, one half sticking out of each side. The LEV reels briefly... and then writhes in robo-agony again as the following three join the first. For several seconds, the V2 can only stagger and weave, now a Goddamn pincushion.

But it doesn't fall. The machine almost topples more than a few times, but after nearly five seconds it finally regains its balance. Inside the cockpit, Leo wipes a trickle of blood from his mouth. "I'm done playing with you," he says, and though he doesn't yell, he manages to sound much angrier than when he did.

"... you're probably just like all the other Gundam Fighters. You don't care if you win... you just want to fight. Fight for the fame, and the glory..." The Viper takes an uncertain step forward, both hands lifting feebly into the air. "But I... I want to win. I have to win! I don't have to destroy the EFA to help people like me... people from space! I just... have to destroy YOU!!"

The Viper swings its hands downwards, and the four Options circling it accelerate into a blur of yellow as they spin around the LEV. After a few seconds they explode away from the V2, off in four completely seperate directions. Another second, and all four reconverge on the viking Gundam at speeds just under the speed of sound, crashing at not only its body but also at its boat.

Every time one of the Options impacts into or by the Viking Gundam, it shoots on through and circles around for another go. The weapons swarm the Gundam without merc or remorse; if bees interbred with cannonballs, those horrible biologicals would be a lot like the Option Varrior system, except they totally wouldn't even fuck with them, because they would be intelligent enough to recognize their betters, as they would also be half dolphin.


COMBAT: Leo Stenbuck has activated a spirit command.

COMBAT: Leo Stenbuck has attacked Eric the Viking. Option Varrior Swarm added to their queue. COMBAT: Leo Stenbuck has struck Eric the Viking with a devastating hit using Option Varrior Swarm.

Knock Out! Eric the Viking's Viking Gundam Raid unit has become disabled! COMBAT: Eric the Viking has counter attacked for a solid hit using Heat Oar!

Knock Out! Leo Stenbuck's Vic Viper unit has become disabled!


A single heat oar is gripped in a twitching arm-- one that does not have enough robotic muscle to heft the mighty weapon of the Viking Warrior. Through the swarm, the Viking Gundam manages to stay erect... until one final swipe is made with the heat oar.

Contact.

SOME TIME AGO

Eric the Viking stands on a white beach, fully clothed in his viking space suit and furry cape (furry boots and giant viking sword as well). A couple of delightful red crabs dance back and forth on the sand, clicking their claws at Eric.

"And that, small sea-spider, is why I am a Gundam Fighter. You see, I believe in no cause. I believe in giant piles of money, but who does not? No, small sea-spider, the future is blank, just like the present. I fight for my way of life-- and my way of life changes on a daily basis. This is my right as Galactic Alpha Male."

NOW

As soon as the swipe is complete, Viking Gundam falls to pieces, as if timed that way perfectly. Metal, wires and asbestos insulation litter the black sea of chuck e. cheeze, small fires clothing the wreckage.

Eric the Viking stands atop a raft made of human skulls, laughing heartily.

"You are not a boy, Leo Stenbuck. You are a man, for only a man can defeat Viking Gundam. But you are mistaken nonetheless," Eric asserts, taking a drink of mead from the empty casing of a 50mm shell. "I am not your enemy."

He brushes some fire away from his fur cape, muscles straining in his delightfully tight mobile trace suit, "For you, an enemy is any armed warrior directly in your vision. Now we are both unarmed, Leo Stenbuck, and neither of us has won. Where will you take your grudge against Eric the Viking? Will you see the truth?"

Eric tyhe Viking takes a moment to urinate on a stack of burning Bibles. "I, myself, do not believe in truth as a concept."


As the fight comes to its climactic and inevitable conclusion, Amuro Ray is paddling the table towards the kitchen as fast as he can.

Actually, the three waitresses are paddling, and Amuro is 'supervising'. He's still having some trouble bending his left leg.

"Well done, Eric the Viking," he says softly. "There is no better lesson than that."


The swipe buries the heat oar in the Viper's chest, joining it with the four oars already impaled there. It is the straw that breaks the camel's back, except the straw is a huge oar and the camel is a robot. But not a robot camel, that would be stupid.

The Vic Viper loses power and slumps forwards, settling into the brackish water. Flames lick at its legs; the damaged armor sloughs and melts off, but the metatron at their core proves unaffected by the fire as two materials that are probably maybe possibly the manifestations of a god's will do metaphysical magic space unicorn battle.

The Viper's cockpit levers open again and Leo Stenbuck rises out of his pilots seat, stepping forward to stand on the nose of the Viper's cockpit wang. "... I don't have a grudge against you," Leo calls, after a long moment of silence. "If I was right, and you're just in this for the glory, I don't like you or respect you. I'm not like the people in this as mercenaries. If the Viper could still move, I'd take your head right now."

"This isn't a game to me," Leo continues, balling his right hand into a fist. Embers drift past him in the background. It is all very dramatic. "I don't care about the endorsement deals or the fan letters. I just want to make sure that... 'spacenoids' are treated the same as everyone else. I want to make the government better than it is. To do that, I have to win the Gundam Fight."

He falls silent for several more seconds, and it seems as if he may have nothing else to say. "... please," he says suddenly, lifting his hand to point at the distant form of Amuro Ray. "... do me one favor. Tell me who that man is."


The Gundam Fighter for Neo Bahrain, pilot of the Dromedary Gundam, happens to be outside the restaurant.

A single tear runs down his face.


Eric the Viking shrugs as Leo Stenbuck speaks dramatically, it is all very moving and imporant. Neo-Norway's favorite son spits out an awesome wad of phlegm and then looks back at the Tiny Titan Terror. "I do not care for your politics, they make you weak and cloud your head. I have no philosophy, Leo Stenbuck. But know that if I did, it would surely oppose your own. This is all very theoretical and is best left to scientists and other nerds and weaklings."

Eric the Viking pulls a full bottle of wine from behind his cape, smashes it over his own head and drinks what is left in the razor-sharp neck. He does not cut himself, but spits out a piece of glass that has been chewed into the perfect shape of a raven.

"That man is Amuro Ray, the White Devil. Though he is not nearly as pureblooded as I am, I still allow him to be called white. That is how much I respect him. He has fathered as many children as he has slaughtered. Amuro Ray is the unblinking eye of the void, staring into your soul and causing untold psychic damage. After you experience that stare you cannot recount it to another human being, for words cannot express such terror. Do you understand me?"

Eric the Viking burps, bubbles come out. "This is all very boring."


From the kitchen, Amuro Ray sneezes. He doesn't get his hand up in time, so he ends up kind of sneezing into Rei's hair.

This could look bad later, when she comes to and Leo sees the drying clot in her hair.


Leo Stenbuck recoils, as if struck.

He is unsure which is greater; that revelation the man that just saved his girlfriend is Amuro Ray, the man he has so long wished to meet, or the revelation that Eric the Viking is a fucking psychopath. After some deliberation, he decides to focus on the former. To look too closely at the latter would surely pull him into the abyss as well.

"... tell him that I want to meet him," Leo instructs Eric the Viking. "Me and him need to talk. He'll know how to contact me." As he speaks, the sound of helicopter rotors fills the air as two Titans helicopters draw close, one an enormous twin-engine Injun cargo helicopter.

The larger one takes position over the Vic Viper and deploys a series of large magnets that latch onto the LEV's shoulders as the helicopter prepares to abscond with it. The other gets uncomfortably close to Amuro's raft and drops a rope ladder; any hesitance to send Rei up is certainly dispelled because, like almost everything the Titans own, the helicopter is full of men with assault rifles. If any of them recognize the pasty Jew below them as one of the Orb Union's top pilots, they show no sign of it.

The Viper begins to lift away into the air, and Leo calls down, "Goodbye, Eric the Viking! Someday we'll meet again!" His Titans jacket flaps in the wind. The only way he could look cooler would be if he had some kind of awesome bandana; he recognizes this and takes note of it.

FIFTEEN MINUTES LATER

"What? Rei, there's something in your hair, let me... ... what the FU-"

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