By Guardian_of_Gravity 25 Comments
Planet Reach (A continuation of this)
After the ANSC's disastrous setback on planet reach, losing many of it's top agents to the Novus and losing multiple battlegroups, High Command had become especially frugal. Anything that could be recycled was to be done so immediately. With the victory in the week long marathon conflict by the ANSC and allied forces that forever exposed the existence of alien life, the ANSC needed an edge to maintain it's shadowy grip over the homeworld now that people were petitioning for their removal.
If the velvet glove wouldn't convince the ungrateful bastards of earth that the Allied Nations Space Command was exactly what they needed, then they would get the iron gauntlet. They needed someone unstoppable, someone more controllable than Death harbinger, but more receptive to the mega-gauge process that enhanced their Frankenstein supersoldiers to even greater heights than their past disappointments such as Jannet, who had spectacularly failed to impress at Mars.
But the most promising candidate was left here on Reach, chest cavity torn open by two thirteen year old candidates "chosen ones" or "primalborn" or whatever poppycock the Primordials called them. Field Marshall Jacques Robespierre was going to be damned if he was going to let the fate of all things be trusted to children or aloof uber-abstracts. No, humanity, allied humanity, was going to do this the right way, the only way. The way that sent the Axis powers fleeing into space, the way that helped defeat the Hierarchy, and the way that destroyed the Thoughtsin once and for all, however much help they had.
He dragged a cigar as he watched his hazmat suit wearing scientists and engineers looking over the area. Scanners and sensors looked over every detail, while every bit of salvageable material was gathered up. Anything they didn't have to make from the ground up would be welcome. Finally, someone's ground penetrating radar beeped.
"Only one thing that signature could be with that profile." The technician breathed out, calling to her compatriots to start digging, excavation drones ripping into the soul to uncover the enormous, lizard-like body, drained of blood as it leaked out of the wounds over the months, gaping wound in the chest where the Novian Dave tore out his heart, but otherwise...entirely intact, not a single molecule had decomposed.
"Sir, we found priority alpha." A technician reported, prompting the hardened Frenchman to smile.
"Dig him out, his body may be of use to our cause."
"We got contact, Seelie faeries crawling up our sixes here, Tir Na Nog government is not suing for peace, repeat, not suing for peace, we need heavy fire support." A Peacekeeper said as mithril tipped arrows rained on his position, the power armored soldier popping out of cover to blast a faerie into gore splattered pieces with his gauss tri-gun.
It wasn't the angry faeries who slew him, but the angered lightning god Taranis who brought down world devastating lightning on the allied forces, rupturing tanks, slaughtering soldiers, and then throwing his mighty mithril axe through countless spaceships, the bearded god howling with anger as he and his fellow gods struck back.
"What's this? You think to strike us!? You who had fought alongside us? You who once worshipped us? Have you no shame? No HONOR!?! THIS IS A SHAMEFUL DISPLAY!" He screamed, the bearded god calling his axe back and slamming it into the earth with such fire and fury that it cracked the world open, sending more to their doom.
Bean Sidhe, his longtime archrival, flickered in and out of combat like a ghost, making many meet their end with her mithril punching daggers. Though she was of the Unseelie court, she couldn't stand an invasion of the realm of the gods by mere mortals. To allow them to run amuck would stand against everything she knew. Her very worldview depended on the superiority of the divine over the mortal.
After flinging his axe through a massive bolo tank, he continued to scream his berserker rages, woad painted all over his face as he and the gods fought like animals, seeking to cause as much harm to the allies as possible, but for some reason...the allies were just withdrawing out of reach, not even contesting their gains. This confused the Celtic thunder god mightily, but then he saw what was standing before him.
A single, great figure stood there, in front of him, smoking a cigar through collapsible openings in his helmet. He didn't even look particularly concerned. Who was this great dinosaur of a man who stood before them? Well, they'd find out as he flicked away his cigar and smiled, letting his helmet fold back into a full head covering position.
Then it struck him like a thunderbolt from the heavens, he remembered Jade's description of a man who fought like a beast. But that couldn't be, that man was long dead...his heart of power torn out and crushed. But yet, here he was, and all that could come to mind was.
"Dornan?" He asked, dumbly staring at the figure who snorted.
"You're supposed to have passed onto a shallow grave you abomination." Taranis said, growling as he clutched his axe in both hands.
"Frankensteins don't die son." Dornan laughed as he got into a squat position, raised half his body into the air, then slammed back into the ground, transluscent green tendrils reaching out of his body and soaking up the very ambient energy of the place, blasting the assorted gods back with an irresistable force as he drew up their great magical constructs and machines, lifting them telekinetically into the air while he sucked the energy for them until he finally had enough for what he needed, at which point explosions rippled out in all directions.
Now standing before them as an even larger and bulkier creature while the gods, confused by this display, started to laugh and clap at the fireworks before Dornan slammed his fists together, the arms turning black as they hardened to the absolute limit that physics allowed upon sensing an impending impact, a smile pasted on his face as he stared down an entire pantheon.
"Come on." He said, still smiling away as Bean Sidhe was the first to speak.
"I've had enough of your games, let's start this dance of death." She said, charging at Dornan at speeds so quick that to those with normal vision, she' have essentially disappeared. But when she hit dornan, all she hit was that black armor that formed near the point of impending impact, sending her reeling as her enchanted mithril blades failed to even scratch him or his suit.
"Where'd you get those knives, the department store?" Dornan snarked as he simply twisted his body and punched bean sidhe miles into the distance, immediately overpowering this peer of the might Thor or Hercules and sending her reeling out of the fight, preluding a casual backhand that instantly reduced a dozen minor, more or less nameless godlings into divine mush.
Taranis, screaming in anger, charged at him, hurling all the lightning he could at him before striking him with his all powerful axe, a weapon that had cut apart planets, clashed evenly with Mjolnir, cut apart so many weapons and soldiers of the Hierarchy, and saved the world hundreds of times. Sreath-mhurtair, the serial killer. And Dornan casually caught it against the flat of his hand and immediately began to push back.
Taranis put more and more strength into his push, but Dornan was so much stronger than he was. Even with his belt and gauntlets of strength, he was no match for Dornan, who simply bent Taranis onto the ground before throwing a jaw shattering left hook into the god's face and actually managed to overpower the Dagda's enchantment on the axe to prevent the unworthy from lifting it.
"What!?" Taranis said as Dornan looked at the axe, overpowering it's desire to return to it's owner through sheer strength, something even Zeus or Odin had never done.
"How can this be!? No! Unhand my weapon you creature" The Lightning god asked before throwing every bit of power he could into a god blast that could blow out a sun like a candle.
Dornan simply raised his other hand and blocked the god blast, advancing towards Taranis until his hands enveloped Taranis' own light shining digits, and squeezed, forcing the blast right back onto Taranis and blowing off his hands.
"You gods should really learn something about technological progress. Magic's fine and all, but it's static. It has rules that you can't improve upon. Sure you can find some new spells, but it all runs on the same ideas, the same principles. Tech has no limits. And your choice in this matter has made you obsolete." He said, swinging his other fist into Taranis' skull to knock him out.
The other gods tried to stop him. Suecellus hit him with everything nature could throw at him, but the works of science had surpassed those of the natural world, and he simply bulldozed his way through all of them before grabbing the nature god and repeatedly slamming his head into the pommel of his own sickle until he fell unconscious.
Ancama blasted him with the oceans of a thousand worlds, he simply punched the water hard enough to vaporize it en masse and clapped the steam back into her face, sending her away like a matchstick in the wind. Maponos, child god of youth, tried to de-age him back into a fetus, but Dornan simply shrugged off the manipulation of time and used the eternally childlike god as a club to batter the earth goddess Erecuna into submission after bursting through ten planetary masses worth of earth elementals.
The war god Segomo and war goddess Agrona, a wedded couple, came at him with all the fury and panopaly of battle, fighting him with the experience of tens of thousands of years. Dornan was not impressed and snapped their weapons in two, smashing them both into the ground. Andraste, Goddess of victory, was met with the fist of defeat to the face.
More and more gods threw themselves at Dornan, and more and more were left on the ground in pain. The final foe stood before him, fury on his face and murder in his eye. The Dagda, Celtic King of the Gods, equal to the likes of Amateresu, Zeus, Odin, Jupiter, Quetzalcoatl. A being who could destroy or recreate entire galaxies, and whom even gods looked upon as a god.
"You, who tried to kill my grand daughter, who has brought war upon my home, who had the audacity to humiliate my warriors. Who are you? An Abomination of science? A man drunk with power with delusions of being a purveyor of freedom? I say you are a curse upon this earth, and I shall remo-" He started before Dornan sucker punched him.
"I've gotten real tired of your archaic ass speech patterns, so come on." he said with a bring it on gesture, bringing his arm to block the Dagda's longsword, the Odinsword level blade being repelled by the nanomachines hardening to their utmost limit, sparks flying everywhere as sword and arm clashed as one, the two pushing against each other until the Dagda forced the arm back and came in for another slash, this time being met with both arms coming in for a block, raising themselves up in a bar position and hardening to black while the sword struck at them from a perpendicular angle.
"That's all you got old man?" He said as he actually began to push the Dagda back, who, sensing that despite him throwing all his strength and power into trying to overpower Dornan, who had by this time, grown monstrously powerful from the constant fighting from his rampage across Tir Na Nog, he was still losing this battle of strength to someone who's power was entirely artificial in nature.
But refusing to accept that Homo Rex Ultima had surpassed Homo Deus Deus, he found a surge of strength and shoved back against dornan with a cunning slash, sending him back a few steps only for Dornan to come in and grab him by the legs.
"You're going down, just like the rest of your hocus pocus lot." Dornan snarled before hammer tossing him into the sunset. But the Dagda was a fearsome deity, and managed to right himself and hit the spires of his palace feet first to propel himself at the beast, who as a defensive measure, hardened his entire body and brought himself into a blocking stance, but with a burst of power like a billion detonating sons, the Dagda drew his sword from his sheathe and knocked him back before coming down with a vertical slash with all his galaxy busting might, striking hard enough to eclipse a billion billion suns in power to send him tumbling over.
Turning away and sheathing his sword the Dagda mused "So ends another mortal who thought he could best a skyfather." But impossibly, Dornan actually started to get back up and laugh, dusting off his armor like he wasn't even particularly bothered.
"What are you?" He asked Dornan, who seemed more amused than genuinely hurt.
"The time of religions and gods is ending. You've seen what happens when your faith meets our firepower. But you see, I've got a plan, a plan that could give you a place here. Organized violence, waging war as business, We're going to put an end to all that bullshit." He said, raising a fist as the Dagda thought over his words.
"Perhaps...I misjudged you."
"Then how about it, will you give us your word of non-interference in our business, or better yet, will you lend us a hand?" He asked, spreading his arms.
"A hand? How about I take yours?!" He shouted, charging in for a chop only to get blocked, moving for a left slash only to be met with another nanite sheathed arm. A third right stroke was repelled by the opposing arm slapping it away, the fourth shoved away by an arm parry, and the fifth downward blow struck Dornan in the head, at which point he simply pushed his nanite blackened head down the sword to get into head butting range of the Dagda's hands and knocking his sword hand upwards and destroying his defense.
The first of Dornan's punishing blows came right at the Skyfather's chest, knocking all the wind out of his lungs. "So you've decided to be an idiot? Fine by me. Of course, what did I expect from some unindustrialized trash?" He said as he watched the results of his punch sending the Dagda fumbling backwards.
"Nay, the gods must be there to watch over men" the Dagda countered before throwing a right and a left slash that were both casually deflected by rapidly hardening nanites over Dornan's arms as he advanced implacably towards the Godhead.
"It has been what we have always done, what we always must do!" He tried again, varying his angles with each new strike, but each time he was deflected easily, even when he put the power to break entire galaxies behind his strikes.
"Dornan was just getting too powerful as his abilities increased the longer he was fighting. Indeed, the Dagda could look at the visor of Dornan's helmet and determine from the look in his eyes that Dornan wasn't actually trying. He was playing with him the whole time.
"Oh please. How many people actually pay more than lip service to their religion? You'll find that we've outgrown the need for you. That the only people who actually put all their heart and soul into believing in gods are uneducated, deluded, or raised by fanatics." He said, casually deflecting every blow.
After countless failed strikes, the Dagda tried to look closely at how Dornan's limbs blackened to form the nanite armor, seeing that it did indeed take some time...Maybe there was a window of opportunity here, he thought as he made two downward strokes only to be repelled twice with the same arm.
"We've gone from the wheel to spaceships in less than five thousand years without the help of Gods or Aliens or anyone. All you ever demanded was worship, sacrifices, and did nothing to actively help our development. You're parasites, plain and simple. And it's time for the delousing." He lectured, and followed up with a huge left hook to the side of his head that sent the Skyfather for a spin, followed up by a left hook that sent him reeling even harder, stars appearing in his vision as Dornan proved himself to be the superior powerhouse.
"You and all your kind have no place asking for worship. You bleed, you die just like all the rest. You're nothing more than jumped up collections of faith in a punchable format. You are nothing without faith. But we have come so far while you still sit around playing with bows and arrows." He continued relentlessly.
The moment he straightened himself, a right cross punch smashed across his cheek and sent him reeling again. And when he got back up, yet another huge left punch came to knock even more sense out of the deity. A huge chestward jab came and smashed every last bit of air from his lungs.
"Every dog has it's day, but now it's time that you were euthanized." He finished, followed by a massive diagonal right uppercut that smashed right across the jaw and picked him off his feet and sent him spinning, and the very moment he stopped spinning, a gigantic left hook came and sent him around for another go.
Sheathing his blade and bringing himself into a bent knee position, he watched as Dornan's right arm came at him for a single massive jab that would likely end him. Looking closely as the nanites advanced up his arm, the Dagda hoped that this one strike would be what he needed. Putting all his power into the explosive unsheathing slash of his sword, he was rewarded with cutting into flesh rather than invincible nanite armor, the sword sailing through the flesh and lopping off the arm midway through the fore arm, sending the appendage flying and Dornan reeling back, blood leaking from the wound as the bearded Skyfather laughed.
But before he could make a taunt, Dornan dug his heel into the ground and hardened the stump with the black armor, turning the very edge of it into a massively sharp piercing edge, swinging it at the Dagda with all his force. The move was so surprising that the Skyfather, despite his enhanced reflexes, had no defense against it. Overpowering his guard, Dornan drove it right into the Dagda's right shoulder, severing his entire right arm, relishing in the Dagda's screams of unfettered agony as he twisted the blade stump around.
Stepping away from the growing pool of godblood and looking at the sword like edge of the severed stump, he chuckled as he held back his regenerative abilities. "Not bad son." He said before walking over to his severed hand and reattatched it, a flash of heat remelding the limb as he tested the functionality of his arm.
"But like I said, you're obsolete in the end. Here's my terms. You will not interfere in the business of the A.N.S.C without our say so. You will cease support of the primalborn whenever their operations run counter to ours, you will hand over everything you know about the Imperium and the Masari. And you'll tell all your little pantheon buddies that if they get in the way of Freedom, I'm coming for them." He laughed as he got out a cigar and smoked it, laughing all the way back home.
.Such a catastrophic defeat of an entire pantheon sent ripples across the world of the divine. One by one, the Pantheons knew that to stand against the A.N.S.C was to know utter defeat and humiliation. Many, most forgotten by men and women, agreed to forever cease in the interference of Allied business, some even decided to pledge their allegiance.
But the most important word had spread. Dornan had returned, Unstoppable as ever, and his dream of a world where the weak will be purged, and the strong shall make America great again , free to live as they see fit and build a new America that will unite all of humanity under his social darwinistic vision. And this time, he planned on staying alive.
The Dagda agreed to the terms set by the A.N.S.C, and he sunk into a depression even as the Tuatha De Dannan's wounds were mended and their great realms restored. He had been handed the bitter wine of crushing defeat, and was bested by someone born a mortal. And yet, he was afraid for mankind, for Dornan's vision was one that knew no mercy.