Author: Vincent Rodger | Banner: Landon Soto
It had been weeks since the Scout Regiment had seen land. They were on a mission to send the host of the Colossal Titan, Kubal, into exile for the crimes the Titan shifter had committed. The ocean’s waves crashed into the sides of the ship, rocking it back and forth as fierce winds began to pick up.
The newly appointed Captain Levi stared into the sea as a storm began to brew. Red lightning surrounded the clouds, hail and rain beating against the ship and its crew.
“Captain!” The captain of the Scout Regiment turned, spotting Hange at the wheel. “I believe we are almost to our destination!”
“Good. Stay on course, I am going to go check on our guest.” Levi walked toward the cabin door, opening it and saw the incapaciated traitor in his place. He shot the chained up elder a glare before looking over at the young man who helped save the world, who sat across from him. “Report, Yeager,” Levi issued as he closed the door behind him. The young man got to his feet, saluting his superior.
“He is still out for the count. The few times he has woken up, the drugs kicked in and knocked him out. No valuable intel from his inane ramblings,” the soldier reported. The captain looked over at Kubal, unconscious and bound to his seat.
“Let’s hope it stays that way,” Levi noted, “We’re almost through the storm. We will reach the island in a matter of minutes. Be ready when we arrive, Yeager.”
“Yes sir.” The soldier went to where his gear was stored. Levi circled around the man, staring down as he wrapped his hands around his blade’s hilt. He wanted to just slice his throat, watch the terrorist bleed to death before him, but he knew all that would do was doom them all. His Titan abilities would kick in and revive him from the dead once again, though it was a mystery how he had survived the very same explosion that vaporized Shikishima.
“You disgust me.” Levi looked up to the former head of the Military Police, recalling the blood and sweat it took to rise through the ranks. All he felt was malice toward his past superior, needlessly throwing lives away for the sake of cryptic secrecy, an inexcusable crime in his mind. The Scout Captain broke contact and returned to the bridge, where the ship drew ever closer to the light at the end of this wretched storm…
After breaking through the barrier of rain droplets, though it was hard to locate, the members of the Scout Regiment saw it. A land long forgotten by man, only told in legends, the one place that God didn’t finish his work… Skull Island. The captain looked up, spotting a group of Leafwings flying over the ship as they screeched at each other, not even noticing the ship beneath them. The sun’s rays laid on the ship’s surface as they entered the island’s bay, just escaping the storm’s grasp.
Breaking the silence that surrounded his colleges, Hange spoke up. “Woohoo! We made it!” The excitement in her voice rang in the other’s ears.
“Could you not do that, commander? Some of us still like our hearing,” Jean complained, the soldier placing his hands on his ears.
“Sorry, I’m just excited. So many new monsters to study!”
Levi turned looking toward the commander. “We aren’t here to stay, we are here to drop this shack of shit into exile.”
“You’re no fun,” Hange pouted, looking down, a bit disappointed in her captain’s orders. Jean stepped forward, wanting to side with the commander.
“Captain, if I may,” Jean began to suggest, awaiting his captain’s permission. Levi nodded, giving the young man approval to speak his mind. “We haven’t been on land in weeks, I think we should have some time on the island at least. Stretch our legs and such before making the trip back.”
“I second that!” Sasha screamed in excitement. “I wanna try and hunt some animals there, god knows how good some of them would taste.” The young woman began to drool, the thought of a fresh meal making her stomach growl.
“We could also make some findings on the wildlife, any new chance to study potential threats would be helpful. The legends do speak of the guardian god and a horde of invasive lizards, it’s still possible that either or both exist.” Levi pondered for a moment, hearing everyone’s thoughts before answering those under his command.
“Fine, but we leave after a few days.” Hange and Sasha smiled in joyous bliss before letting out a scream of excitement. Jean covered his ears once again, annoyed by the pair. Eren walked past his comrades, with his closest allies Armin and Mikasa, pulling the man across the ship’s deck as they headed toward the helicopter near the stern. The young blonde man overheard the conversation, happy that the captain made the decision to stay on the mysterious island for a time. They needed to examine the threats to their home, even if the chance was slim, it was better to be safe than sorry.
Mikasa wore a blank stare as she glared at the traitor. His military career was legendary among the soldiers, but now his legacy would go down as a tale of treachery. The young woman felt nothing but malice toward Kubal. He was the reason Eren’s parents had been killed and forced her friend into being an orphan. “Mikasa,” the soldier turned toward Armin who held a face of concern. “You alright?”
“Yeah, I’m fine. Sorry, I must have spaced out.” The two lifted Kubal into the helicopter, strapping him into the seat to make sure he didn’t fall out prematurely. Eren placed his hand on Mikasa’s shoulders, turning her attention toward him. His face resembled her own glare from only moments before. The warrior simply turned away, opening the door to the pilot seat before climbing in. Armin shrugged as his friend looked at him, the two quickly climbing into the vehicle.
Armin and Eren strapped themselves into their seats as Mikasa began to flip switches, the helicopter whirring to life. The blades began to rotate as the vehicle took to the air, their comrades watching as they approached the island of myth. “You better come back, you three!” Sasha screamed as she waved them goodbye, wishing her friends the best of luck.
“Hange, pull as close as you can into the bay. We will set up camp immediately.”
“Yes sir!” The commander pushed the ship toward the bay, ready to finally step on land for the first time in weeks.
The wind pushed against the helicopter, making the trip uncomfortable for the passengers. Eren grabbed onto the strap above him as his other hand grasped Kubal, making sure they were ready for when they were above the drop zone.
The animals of the land all looked up as they heard the approaching group. Though humanity had visited in the past, it had been over a hundred years since modern man stepped on the island, and with every step came nothing but fire and death. Armin turned around, giving Eren a thumbs up as they arrived far enough from the bay. The Titan shifter unstrapped himself and the traitor before opening the door to the helicopter. The young man looked beneath him as he threw Kubal and himself out of the vehicle.
Eren took in a deep breath as he began to fall, the air rushing past him at speeds he had never felt. The soldier reoriented himself into a diving position, bringing his hand to his jaws, sinking his teeth into his flesh. Blood rushed out his hand moments before a golden bolt of lightning struck him, the energy surrounding him as the Titan shifter began to transform. In a quick flash, bone, muscle, and flesh began to form. Eren reached out, grabbing Kubal as he made his landing. The earth beneath his feet erupted, flying into the sky. He rose from the ground, steam rising from his new 15-meter form.
The Attack Titan looked around, making sure he didn’t accidentally crush any of the wildlife. Relieved, he turned and waved toward the helicopter to follow him as he marched through the jungle brush. Sker Buffalo looked up from their mounds; giant ants stood still in the trees; Death Jackels all drooled at the gigantic humanoid, seeing nothing more than a meal in the Titan.
Eren broke trees underneath his weight as he ran across the island’s surface, leaving footprints into the very earth. The helicopter flew past him, heading toward a clearing in the middle of the jungle. The Titan shifter pressed onward, quickly catching up with his comrades. The vehicle stood still, hovering above the area they had selected for the drop-off. The hero of the walls reached down, placing Kubal onto the ground before rising back to his feet, looking down at the man before turning away.
“You deserve a hell of a lot worse than this you bastard, but if this is the only way to see you pay for all those that you have hurt, then so be it.” Eren charged away, pushing through the jungle brush back to the island bay.
The helicopter followed the warrior, the pair wanting to just relax after this arduous trip.
Night covered the land, and Kubal began to open his eyes. Shaking his head, he got up, his vision blurry from the aftermath of the overdosage. He let out a small groan as he made his way to his feet, looking around. This land was unfamiliar compared to the walls. The Titan shifter turned, meeting the glare of an approaching Sker Buffalo. The man backed up as the gentle animal let out a soft grunt, staring at Kubal before turning away.
“Guess it’s harmless…” Kubal spat, watching as the Sker Buffalo began to walk back into a small lake. Suddenly, a shadow cast over the land, with only the ruffling of its membranes. The Sker Buffalo screamed as sharp black talons stabbed into the animal’s flesh, and was raised into the sky effortlessly. Kubal’s eyes widened in surprise as he watched the beast take off with its meal.
The beast had red and black scales covering its body, twin wings carrying it through the sky, a large tail with black spikes erupting from its flesh, and sharp teeth hanging in its maw. The monster appeared reptilian in nature, which made Kubal anchor his feet in preparation.
“What… What in the fuck is that!? A dragon?” he panicked, breaking into a sweat. He had heard legends of gigantic monsters, but he always saw them as stories and nothing more.
The ancient experiment turned back to Kubal, seeing him as another potential hunter. The beast had escaped death more times than it could count, facing many hunters and other monsters in the past. It knew what humans were capable of, what horrors they had done to its kind or others like it in a bid to gain power.
The wyvern turned around, throwing the Sker Buffalo at the man. Kubal quickly ran out of the way, the hurled animal missing the dictator by a nudge. The monster landed as the dictator got to his feet, the wyvern raising its wings before roaring at the man. The Greater Rathalos was ready to battle. Kubal gritted his teeth in determination, only having one course of action to take…
The traitor raised his hand up to his mouth before biting into his thumb, lightning surrounded the man, forcing the ancient beast back as the light blinded it. As steam erupted from the blast point, a monster began to take form. Muscle, skin, and bone quickly formed, a gigantic hand swiping away the steam revealing its form to the monster.
The Colossal Titan had arrived.
The Greater Rathalos was taken back, was this person also an experiment by the ancients? The same people that took away its ability to have offspring and made it a giant to its kind. Was this man also a victim, or was this one of them testing their newest experiment against it?
The Colossal Titan roared as he raised his hand and swung, the fist crashing into the ground as the king of the skies quickly jumped back. The Flying Wyvern fired a stream of fire across the ground, catching the greenery ablaze. The flames trailed up the humanoid’s arm before the Titan simply swung his hand, killing the blaze on his body.
The Greater Rathalos unleashed a roar of rage as it took to the sky, raising its talons at the Titan’s face, only for the Colossal Titan to swing upward. A gargantuan fist struck the wyvern across his jaw, sending it careening to the ground. The Rathalos opened its wings, catching itself in midair; though the Titan was slow, he was powerful. Blood trailed down its maw onto the ground below, the beast made a mental note to be wary of this one’s strength.
The Colossal Titan reached into the earth, ripping out chunks of rock and soil, rearing his hand before throwing it at his reptilian foe. The monster quickly dodged the catapulted clumps of earth and charged forth, reaching out with sharp talons before shredding the Colossal Titan’s shoulders. As the Titan shifter boomed an echoing roar, the Greater Rathalos reared its head back before unleashing a stream of fire onto the Titan’s face. Kubal screamed in agony as he reached up, wrapping his gigantic hands around the beast, applying pressure. The Greater Rathalos let out a squeal of pain and stopped its assault before coughing up blood, his ribs being crushed under pressure.
The flames may have burned Kubal’s eyes, but he knew an injured animal when he heard one. With one mighty swing, he threw the wyvern with his tremendous strength. The Rathalos roared as it slammed into a mountainside, blood spitting out its maw as it fell to the ground, rocks crumbling onto its prone form.
“Your attack is futile. It seems that whatever you tried to force into my system was destroyed by my Titan’s prowess.”
The ancient bioweapon began to rise back to its feet, groaning as pain rushed through its body. The Rathalos looked upon the humanoid’s form, staring as steam rose from the body. The damage was reversed as new muscles began to form. The wyvern smiled, as they anticipated the poison to take its toll.
Kubal’s eyes regenerated, at first blurry until it returned to him gradually. Rathalos took to the sky, roaring as they circled around the Colossal Titan. The wyvern fired a volley of fireballs at the gigantic man’s legs, rupturing muscles and bathing it in flames. The warrior turned, swinging his arm at the wyvern, only for the engineered guardian to catch the arm in midair.
The Greater Rathalos sank its claws into the arm of the Titan before reaching down and snipping into the forearm with its beaked mouth. The crimson dragon thrashed their head back and forth, Kubal rearing his hand back and attempting to pry the wyvern off. Before he could, the Rathalos released hold of the limb and twirled in the air, making a gradual descent. Landing on the rugged earth, it faced the red-muscled human. Flames surrounded its maw as it unleashed a stream of fire at the intended target.
“Stupid lizard! Stand still!”
Kubal reared his arm back, steam surrounding the limb as he went in for a strike. Despite its size, Rathalos once again evaded, leaving the flying fist to decimate the soil that became victim to his wrath. Steam erupted from the hole as the Titan pulled his arm from the earth. “What a waste of power…” Kubal turned, seeing as the Rathalos quickly flew by, striking the Titan’s face with its barbed tail. A stream of blood erupted from the wound as Kubal screamed in pain.
The Rathalos smiled as it banked a hard right, maneuvering around. Flames erupted as another volley of fireballs incinerated the giant’s legs, Kubal stumbling forward as his exposed muscles were torn asunder by fiery wrath.
“I will not be beaten by some overgrown reptile!” Kubal fumed with rage and exhaustion, turning to reach out as the Rathalos approached, attempting to seize the monster. Though once again, the wyvern sank its talons into the Titan’s arm. Kubal gritted his teeth and prepared to strike the monster with his free arm. Yet a neural pain flared in his mind when the beast sank his teeth into his knuckles. Blood cascaded down as steam rose, the wyvern thrashing its head back and forth until the hand was torn completely off.
“You bastard!” As the limb hung in the monster’s maw, Kubal reared his head back and thrusted forward, headbutting the beast’s head and forcing the wyvern off of him. Rathalos crashed into the ground as the arm flew in the sky, crashing into a nearby lake. The bioengineered dragon rose to his feet as his vision became blurry and blood flew from his maw. This human, this hunter, was stronger than anticipated. Rathalos coughed up blood as adrenaline rushed through its veins, with vision returning to it, watching as the man approached.
Steam rose from the wounded arm as a new arm began to form. Kubal had faced a lot in his life, but he had never faced a beast of legend. Though all that he felt was rage and determination to kill the monster where it stood.
Rathalos observed the Titan’s body and noticed that the damage it inflicted was regenerating. The monster snarled as it watched all its work be undone. It had never seen this before in all of its life. This man wasn’t unbeatable, but this would be the fight of its life. The monster opened its wings as it unleashed a booming roar and took to the skies, charging forward toward the gigantic human.
The Colossal Titan roared as he swung, striking the Rathalos across the skull, sending the monster back to the ground. Large red palms reached down and grabbed the beast by the tail, lifting the wyvern into the air and slamming it into the ground. A crater formed from the sheer impact, leaving the monster to cry out in pain. Flames surrounded its maw before unleashing a stream across the attacker’s bare muscles. Kubal roared in agony as the flames burned at his Titan’s exterior. His healing factor was strong, but much more would be the doom of him. The Colossal Titan raised his foot, aiming to stomp the wyvern into the ground.
“This is the end of you monster!”
The gigantic leg approached at a rapid speed, Rathalos rolling over to the side the best it could as the limb crushed its left wing. The wyvern screamed in bitter agony as bone broke underneath the searing impact, but anger quickly overtook the pain as it reached out, with fangs biting into the sinew of the Titan’s heel, ripping it out. Blood sprayed as the Titan took a fall forward, crashing into the earth below. Kubal attempted to get back to his feet, only for the Rathalos to pounce onto his back. Fear ran through the general’s mind as the monster got closer to his nape, quickly he released a geyser of steam from his body, attempting to burn the Rathalos away and give himself time to heal…
The wrathful wyvern reached out with its jaws, wrapping them around the nape of the Colossal Titan and sinking them in. A loud pop echoed throughout the battlefield as Kubal screamed in wretched pain. Rathalos thrashed its head once more, throwing blood across its scales and the ground, staining the landscape with evaporating blood. The wyvern pulled with all the strength that remained, ripping the head and nape off from the body and throwing it to the side, killing Kubal in an instant. The reptilian protector raised its head into the sky and roared, proclaiming his victory before taking heavy breaths and walking off of the disintegrating corpse.
The ancient guardian fought well against the invader, managing to kill the hunter. It attempted to open his wings, only for its body to coil up in pain. Rathalos snarled as they marched forward, walking toward the direction of its territory, with a single thought running through its mind.
Who sent the invader?