Author: KeSean Johnson | Banner: Landon Soto

Energy… Power… Energy. It is what one needs to become faster, stronger, better.

It was a peaceful day in Japan. No carnage, no wars, no Kaiju. A group of six American tourists and two scientists had come to the Land of the Rising Sun to learn and study about the most famous mountain in the Japanese mainland: Mt. Fuji. Fascination of the geological feature firmly grasped every member until their eyes gazed upon the wonder or in this case, the unexpected anomaly growing out of it like a tumor. The crystal pulsated a pinkish-white glow and concealed raw power. The tourists and scientists could not believe what they uncovered only two-hundred meters away from them. The thing stood near the huge mountain with a height they could only assume was near fifty meters.

Dr. Christopher Kennen, professor at Harvard University, was more interested in the crystal spire than frightened by it. He knew there was something about it that was vital to some sort of organic being.

“A wonder unlike any seen before,” the scientist pondered aloud with an amazed look on his face.

Excluding the doctor, a nefarious vibe descended upon the group. The scientist’s daughter, Noelle Kennen, had just become an assistant teacher at a high school in Massachusetts. She went on this trip to learn about Mt. Fuji, not a pink, over-sized icicle. Unlike her father, worry over the mysterious feature influenced her actions. Her father’s arrogance would surely come into play when face-to-face with some unknown part of science like this. He had to study it. It was his addiction in life, a light of knowledge he couldn’t turn away from. A glow that would eventually-

Noelle pushed through the group and moved next to her father. “Dad! Dad!”

There was no answer. He wasn’t even attempting to learn about it. He was just gazing at it; his eyes reflecting the glow of the crystal.

“Dr. Kennen!” With just those two words, he snapped out of it.

“Yes, Ms. Kennen?” He said without even turning around.

She never liked it when he called her that. “Please, don’t call me that… I’m not one of your students.” Noelle remarked with frustration.

“But you’re one of mine,” her father said with a hint of humor in his voice.

He always wanted her to grow up in his self-image; intelligent, good-looking, well-mannered, and to have a quest for new knowledge. The scientist with a PhD had a self-famous quote: “You learn something new every day. Acknowledge it. Make something of it. Put it to good use.” And he would not miss the pulsating opportunity before them both.

Noelle’s father quit gazing at the crystal and turned back to the group merely for the ground to begin to shake. Everyone felt a faint rumble under the soles of their shoes and thought an earthquake might have just happened far away. After all, they were in Japan. Next thing they knew it happened again, this time with a little more force. Then again and again the earth quakes rattled the dirt beneath them. Save for the doctor, they had been too frightened to figure out what was going on. One of the tourists couldn’t handle the anxiety and ran away from the pack, unnoticed. Next thing the fleeing tourist knew, he was snatched right off the ground. The giant pushed the human upward to its chin until his entire body was impaled by some sort of crystal. He slid off organic entity and fell hundreds of feet, screaming in terror and in the process, alerting all those he traveled with of his killer.

Everyone turned around and saw a huge, sleek, menacing creature walk into their valley. It stood eighty-four meters, with a half dazzling white, half diamond purple skin texture that shined quite beautifully. It had sharp claws, razor-sharp teeth, and crystals on certain parts its body. A crystal beard, multi-crystal tipped-tail, and longer, curved crystals lined its back. No one knew what this thing was, but it showed no sign of being friendly.

“Part of me wants to study this diamond-like creature. The other part says to run for your goddamn life,” the doctor said aloud, his thoughts spilling out for all to hear.

“Pick the latter, dad!” Noelle screamed.

For once in his life, the doctor could not pick apart her assessment of the situation so with a hurried breath, he chased after her, looking back at the beast with a fascination that grew greater even as he ran farther away.

* * * * *

No one, not even the very monster knew what it was or where it even came from, but it had a name.

Krystalak.

Filled with malicious intent, it was clear as day what this thing was actually here for. Not to squash the pathetic, little insects in its new domain, but to win a trophy. A trophy of great magnitude and of awesome power. He needed it! It would be his.  Nothing was in his way and nothing was going to stop him now! Or at least, so he thought. The magnificent creature was mere inches away from unlocking his greatest achievement when the ground shook violently. Unlike his own footsteps, the tremors swayed even the mighty mutant.

Krystalak stood his ground, not letting his trophy slip away from him that easily. The earth had stopped shaking after a full minute. Then out of nowhere, the ground exploded in a dramatic show of force, Something pushed its way out of the Earth and tossed Krystalak away with its monstrous strength. After Krystalak regained his equilibrium, he realized the crystalline tower was still intact and it made him chuckle with evil glee. Then he hissed, remembering something had thrown him up into the air and back down to the ground. He almost forgot, his mind so focused on his trophy, it took him moments to process the newest arrival. What stood in front of him was an ancient dinosaur with brown, wrinkly skin, a rock-like torso, long tail, crescent-shaped horns on either side of its head, and a small nasal horn.

Gomora roared a cry of defiance. It sensed the crystal, the mutant born of its cosmic power and he would not let its actions go unanswered.

The crystal-covered creature roared back, infuriated now. He thought it was his for the taking the second he laid his menacing eyes on it. Gomora had ruined his plans so now he was going to ruin his life!

Krystalak decided to make the first move. He charged head first with his shoulders moving side-by-side and running at a remarkable speed for its size. The Crystal Terror was getting ready to scratch out Gomora’s life from existence when suddenly the Subterranean-monster side-stepped him. Krystalak just barely stopped himself from colliding into the glowing structure he desired before he turned ninety degrees to the left to look at his new enemy, only to receive a kick in the stomach which sent him toppling onto his back. Gomora marched toward the downed monster, ready to tear into its underbelly merely for the mutant’s tail to trip the nearing dinosaur. With his opponent within a plume of dust, Krystalak got back up in an instant and pounced onto Gomora. Krystalak showed no remorse, swinging his claws into Gomora’s face as if there was no tomorrow.

Gradually Gomora raised his arms into a defensive-block, holding off the onslaught to the best of his ability. Rage coursed through every fiber in the dinosaur’s being until he could not contain it any longer. A swift uppercut smashed into Krystalak’s chin before Gomora followed up with a dual kick to the abdomen, launching the mutant away. After a climatic impact, both arose searching for the other.

Hate-filled eyes glared at one another, their owners moving in a slow circle, waiting for the other to attack first. Krystalak’s patience quickly wore thin, sending the beast surging forth once again. The Crystal Beast swung at Gomora’s face who then ducked and shoulder blocked him in the gut. Krystalak retaliated with a karate kick to the leg which forced Gomora to one knee. Gomora hugged both of Krystalak’s legs and dropped him to the ground, smashing Krystalak’s head into a grouping of trees. Climbing atop the fallen mutant, Gomora imitated his opponent by swinging wildly. His hits proved stronger than any Krystalak unleashed as blows which glanced off Krystalak’s face splintered the broken trees around its head. As blood shot out of the fiend’s maw, Krystalak’s eyes widened in anguish and it lashed out, burying its fangs into the dinosaur’s left hand. Gomora wailed while fresh blood ran down its left hand, smashing his right into Krystalak’s head to try and release his foe’s grip, yet try as he might, Krystalak’s grip proved too firm. Deciding a new course of action, Gomora got back up and thrusted his knee into Krystalak’s chin, nearly dislocating it. The Crystal Terror head smashed into the ground, its painfilled grasp finally at an end, allowing Gomora to seize the opportunity and lift Krystalak. Stagnant above his horned head, the determined reptile slammed Krystalak him to the ground. The earth fractured violently, bending to form a shallow grave, but Gomora would not allow his foe to die so easily! Ripping Krystalak out of the ground once more, Gomora lifted him high into the air just as the mutant awakened.

In a panic, Krystalak bent downward, reaching Gomora’s groin area and flipped his adversary through the air. Gomora unwillingly performed a front flip before crashing onto his back, eyes wide at the impossible move his opponent performed.

* * * * *

“Amazing!” Dr. Kennen shouted, “That monster was falling while being held by its will, yet it could change the velocity of which it was falling and curl up.”

Gomora and Krystalak gradually entered a vicious close quarters brawl, each smashing their respective claws across the other, entrancing the doctor in thought. He walked toward the battle, completely focused on the crystalline creature.

It was not a monster of mere brute strength like its adversary. It surely possessed intelligence. How extensive was its mind? Could communication be possible?

Maybe… maybe I can reason with it.

Noelle looked on in shock at her father. He’d surely gone too far. Lost in thought, in some type of foolish idea. Noelle tried to run after him but her group members held her back with all their strength. No matter how much she struggled, they refused to let go. They had her too tight in their grasp. She started to cry and scream at the top of her lungs to no avail, watching her father approach the rampaging beasts in a trance like state.

The two monsters were still in battle. Krystalak gained the upper hand and mule kicked Gomora in the face. The saurian crashed into a nearby hillside, unconscious as the doctor neared Krystalak’s shadow. Just then, Krystalak heard the meager inquiries of the good doctor. Orange eyes glared downward and spotted the meager human looking at him. Did the pest shouting not understand what he was? The impudence of the meager being caused Krystalak’s claws to twitch, and with a swift slide of its heel, the pest vanished into a pool of blood.

The Crystalline Beast roared into the air like he had conquered not just one, but two battles until his murderous eyes spotted the other humans in the distance. Deciding it best to strike fear into those that remained, Krystalak turned around and shot out a barrage of gigantic, purple crystals from his tail. Normally they’d explode on contact but this time they stuck into the ground, missing every human. Everyone quivered in fear, feebly trembling on the ground as if to appease the monster and be spared a quick death. At least all but Noelle. With eyes unleashing tears, but a vacant expression, the young woman remained unnervingly calm in the face of the beast. Her mind only focused on a single question.

“Why?”

* * * * *

Gomora awakened. He knew where he was and definitely remembered what had KO’d him briefly. Rising to his feet, he spotted Krystalak giving him an evil glare, sparking rage Gomora never thought he could unleash. The dinosaur charged toward Krystalak and speared him to the ground. Quickly the dinosaur, stomping on Krystalak’s stomach repeatedly to make him cough up blood. Krystalak echoed cries of agony with every stomp Gomora delivered. Krystalak couldn’t take the physical blows any longer and made a counterattack with his tail. The elongated weapon shot up and hit Gomora in his side, reeling him back. His foe within reach, Krystalak leapt onto Gomora, knocking him flat on his back. Dagger like claws swiped repeatedly over the saurians face before Krystalak drove his right elbow into Gomora’s throat, forcing him to cough blood. Gomora wailed in agony, but his cries grew deaf as Krystalak crushed Gomora’s throat.

Krystalak relished the carnage. Did the horned creature think he would show mercy? No it would die like the human. Like all that would dare to take away the power which surged within the crystal!

The mutant arose and slammed his foot upon the dinosaur’s neck. Gomora’s struggle intensified as he felt his wind-pipe being punctured. Gomora tried using his strength to raise Krystalak’s foot, but he was unsuccessful from the lack of oxygen. Rage filled eyes began to grow dull, the life vanishing before Krystalak’s malevolent glare until a light began to illuminate the saurian’s nasal horn. Charging oranage energy from his crescent horns, Gomora fired off a Super Oscillatory Wave. The arrogance of the mutant vanished in an overwhelming orange light which launched him backward at high speed and plowed the earth with his body.

Krystalak groggily got back up, surprised by the power the dinosaur possessed. The admiration proved short lived as the mutant realized Gomora was running full speed at him. Deciding surprise was needed, Krystalak awaited until the saurian was within striking distance and spun, kneeing him in the face. Gomora cried out in agonizing pain as his head bled a little bit before receiving a tail swipe to the stomach, sparks flying everywhere. Krystalak gave a devastating uppercut to Gomora, sending him falling on his back. Gomora rapidly spun over onto his stomach and got to his knees with his head still down. Krystalak ran toward him and punted him in the chin almost breaking it.

Gomora was in pain. Deep pain. He has cuts, bruises, dizziness, and a monster sized headache, but he wouldn’t let himself give up like this. Not in this way. Not by this monster. Determination morphed into energy, energy poured into Gomora’s horn and from Gomora’s unwillingness to relent birthed a Super Oscillatory Wave. Krystalak, now furious, released a Prism Beam from his mouth. Each energized blast soared to the other until they collided in an energetic battle of will. Bolts of energy carved through the dirt, harsh winds blew down trees, but neither kaiju showed signs of relenting. Gomora noticed his beam advancing and realizing his beam held the advantage, the saurian dumped his reserves into a final surge.

Krystalak couldn’t believe his eyes as the wave of orange energy neared. Even after sending more power into his own attack, his beam was losing! No, he couldn’t lose. If he lost he would lose his-

An energized explosion of sparks and shockwaves tore across the mutant’s face, breaking open its grew skin and shattering multiple crystals across his body. Krystalak crashed upon the dirt, struggling to arise and giving Gomora an opportunity he could not pass up. The powerhouse ran toward Krystalak and impaled him with his nasal horn. Krystalak screamed in agony as his torso was punctured. Gomora relished the scream and answered his opponent’s cry by letting loose as much Super Oscillatory energy into Krystalak’s entire body as he could muster. Krystalak panicked, feeling his heart race in sheer panic, or so he thought…

The fiend’s heart absorbed the foolish dinosaur’s energy like a sponge. Realizing something was amiss, Gomora retracted his horn merely to watch Krystalak mockingly arise, his body emitting an overwhelming aura of purple energy. The malevolent gaze of Krystalak peered into Gomora’s and found true fear. Satisfied with the discovery, Krystlak let loose a shockwave that vaporized all within his presence. A plume of dust and sparks enveloped all within the slopes of Mt. Fuji, but as it vacated, Krystalak found the saurian no longer in his presence. Instead, a new geological feature graced his sight.

Krystalak bellowed into the huge gaping hole in the ground, letting Gomora know to never mess with him ever again. He then raised his head high into the sky and howled to the heavens; the world would now know he was not to be trifled with!

* * * * *

Meanwhile, back near Mt. Fuji, the group felt relief in their escape from a certain death. Dr. Kennen’s daughter, Noelle, was still stricken by her father’s death but she wasn’t crying anymore. Something that saddened her, but amazed her at the same time. Her expression remained rigid, eyes filled with a rage and a desire to carry through the impossible. She would see her father’s killer meet their end. A fate she would acknowledge, make something of, and surely put to good use. She merely needed the tools to enact her ambitions…

* * * * *

It was time! The Crystalline Terror had turned around and laid his undivided attention onto the crystalline tower he came to achieve from the start. Krystalak walked up to the glowed entity and smiled devilishly at it.

Energy…Power…Energy. Krystalak could now posses it all and so much more.

Winner: Krystalak

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