A Yurble stole my cinnamon roll! Circulation: 177,384,936 Issue: 310 | 21st day of Gathering, Y9
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Sloth's Time Machine: Part Three


by azellica

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Also by jamesuk2

Abandoned Kreludite Mine, Sector 9-P, Kreludor:

Oen stepped back from the time machine and folded the blueprints away. A heap of metal plates, plasma screens, and shiny red buttons, the machine towered over the three minions. “I told you it was easy, Masters. Sloth will be most pleased.”

      “Right,” Krule grunted. “So, we go back in time, change the past, and then come back to the present where Sloth will be in power.”

      “One question,” Zoland frowned, “How exactly do we change the past?”

      Krule stared at the Lenny. “Uh... we’d just have to make it impossible for the Resistance to win their first victory.”

      “How?”

      “I don’t know,” Krule realized.

      “You don’t have a plan?” Zoland asked incredulously. “You’re supposed to be the one leading us!”

      Oen stepped forward. “We shall set the time machine to the night when the Resistance got into the control room. They were able to win because they had taken over the base’s computer system and could use the security features against us. We will prevent them from doing that.”

      “How? I thought that Captain Zara had let them in,” Krule said, puzzled.

      “She did,” the fire Grundo replied. “She got them into the base’s control room and allowed them to tamper with the computers. We can prevent the Resistance from winning by removing her from the picture.” Oen picked up a virtublaster. “Master Sloth will be most pleased.”

Safe Room, Resistance Headquarters, Kreludor:

      The clouds of smoke slowly cleared and Zara stood up. “I think we did it.”

      The Kyrii pushed aside her virtushield and went to examine the safe door. It had collapsed forward with the force of the explosion.

      “Excellent! I was worried for a minute there,” Retep said, stepping outside. “We need to find where Oen got to now.”

      “Do you think he’s still wearing his communicator? We could track him through it.”

      Retep opened the small computer he wore strapped around an arm and punched Oen’s name into the locator. “He’s left the base and apparently is...” Retep squinted at the screen. “He’s in that old kreludite mine in sector 9-P.” The royal Lupe frowned, “We need to find out what’s happening.”

      “Shall we follow him then?” Zara asked.

      “Yeah, but grab a virtublaster first. Something’s going on...”

Abandoned Kreludite Mine, Sector 9-P, Kreludor:

      Commander Krule was sceptical as he entered the time machine. The mutant Grundo wasn’t fond of the idea of being transported back in time to a location that would be attacked by hordes of Resistance fighters shortly after. Furthermore, he wasn’t entirely comfortable with the concept of time travel. Would he really end up on Moon Base 32 or would he find himself with one antenna in Faerieland and the other deep in Maraqua?

      Lieutenant Zoland began punching coordinates into the machine’s computer.

      “Right,” the Lenny said. “So the plan is to get into the past, zap Captain Zara, preventing her from helping the Resistance, and then get back into the present where things will have changed?”

      “It sounds so simple like that.” Krule grimaced. “Just go back in time...”

      “It should not be too hard,” Oen spoke up. “Master Sloth’s machine is quite ingenious. We will set the time re-equalizer to summon us back after one hour has passed.”

      “We’ll only have an hour?” Krule asked in disbelief.

      “How long do you think we’ll need?” the fire Grundo asked.

      “Well, umm... I don’t know...” Krule shrugged slowly.

      Zoland rolled his eyes. “One hour will be enough.” He pushed the button.

Abandoned Kreludite Mine, Sector 9-P, Kreludor:

     Retep skidded to a stop, followed by Zara. Before them was a tall metallic box, glimmering in the light of the mine’s old lamps. Inside the box, through a small window, the royal Lupe saw three figures and then, in a flash of green light, they vanished.

      “Was that... Oen inside?” Zara asked tentatively.

      “I think so,” Retep swallowed. “And I thought I saw that Virtupets commander that used to work at Base 32... Krule.”

      “What is this thing?” the shadow Kyrii gave the time machine a small nudge with her foot.

      Retep opened its door and peered into the machine’s interior. “Some sort of electronic device... maybe a teleporter? ...Hang on... Look at this!”

      Inside, a small monitor displayed a map of Kreludor with a red light pulsing over the location of Base 32. And below the map was a date.

      Zara frowned. “Why is it set in the autumn of year eight? Wasn’t that around the time...”

      “...the Resistance defeated Base 32,” Retep finished. “It’s a day before our victory. Do you think this could be some sort of time device?”

      “Like a time machine?” The Kyrii shook her head. “It’s not possible. Even Dr. Sloth couldn’t invent...”

      But even as she spoke, Retep noticed the roll of blueprints lying on the machine’s floor. The royal Lupe smoothed them out and winced as he read them.

      “Look, plans for a time machine... I told you so. Signed by Sloth too.”

      “Why would Sloth want to send anyone back in time? And why would Oen go?”

      “I think we’ll have to assume Oen’s been brainwashed into helping them,” Retep said resignedly. “But if so, what would going back in time achieve? Can they change the past or something?”

Hallway 14-B, Virtupets Moon Base 32, Kreludor:

      Krule’s screams came to a sudden stop as he collapsed onto the metal floor and drew a deep breath. Slowly, the area around him came into focus.

      “If you’re done screaming like a meepit,” Zoland’s voice sounded from above, “you might realize that we’ve been transported.”

      Krule groggily turned over to see the Lenny and Oen standing beside him. With as much dignity as possible, Krule pulled himself to his feet.

      Oen was adjusting his communicator. “My calendar says that we have gone back in time,” the fire Grundo said, peering around. “And this place looks like Moon Base 32.”

      “It worked?” Krule said incredulously.

      “Master Sloth’s plans always work,” Oen said with his empty smile. “We must now carry out his mission.”

      “Right,” said Zoland. “So, basically, we just need to find Zara. Where was she at this time?”

      Krule shrugged. “I can’t keep track of these things.”

      “Captain Zara was in a meeting with your past self, Commander. My past self and another anti, Retep, are also at the base and,” Own checked his watch, “We’ll be summoning Zara shortly to help us get into the base’s control room. All we need to do is intercept her before she reaches Retep.”

      Commander Krule nodded. It seemed simple enough. The mutant Grundo drew his virtublaster. “Alright, let’s go.”

Abandoned Kreludite Mine, Sector 9-P, Kreludor:

      Zara glanced at Retep. “I still don’t know what the time re-equalizer is for. Sure this will work?”

      “We’ve got to try something,” the royal Lupe replied. “Let’s go.”

      “Alright...” the shadow Kyrii resignedly pushed a large red button on the time machine.

      In an instant, a flash of light flickered throughout the metal box. Then, the entire scene dissolved in a flood of colours. Wind darted from all directions and Zara could hear billions of sounds rushing through her. She covered her ears.

      And then, everything stopped. The shadow Kyrii slowly opened her eyes.

      “Let’s never do that again,” Retep said. “That was far worse then any teleporter.”

      Zara nodded, shaking slightly. She looked around and saw long metal corridors, lined with office doors. The Virtupets logo was engraved in the center of every door and below was the carved name of high ranking officers.

      “Virtupets Space Station,” she murmured. “It worked.”

      “Hey!” an angry voice sounded from behind them. “What are you two doing here?! You don’t have authorisation to be here!”

      Zara spun around. A harassed looking Virtupets security guard was jogging towards them. Retep’s hand immediately flew to his virtublaster.

      “How did you get down here?!” the guard said with exasperation. “Didn’t you see the ‘Do Not Enter’ signs? This area is only accessible to Virtupets administration. By Sloth! Tourists these days!” The guard caught up to them. “You’ll have to follow me to be... cleared. There is highly confidential information around and we can’t take any chances that you two-”

      “Discovered Virtupets Corporation was still being run by Sloth?” Retep said with a laugh. “We already knew that, thanks. So you’re taking us for clearance? That’s great because Zara and I were hoping to be brainwashed. Lead the way.”

      The guard looked flustered. “H-how did...?” He gathered his thoughts. “There is no evidence Sloth is involved in Virtupets,” he stated finally. “But you two will still have to come with me.”

      “Of course,” Retep said, following the guard.

      Zara gave him a look. “We were hoping to be brainwashed?” she whispered, raising an eyebrow.

      The royal Lupe grinned. “How else will we find Oen? We’ve gone back in time to when he was at the Space Station; if we can find him, we can save him from being brainwashed.”

      “That was your plan?” Zara winced.

      “What’s wrong with it?” Retep asked.

      “Eh, we don’t know what time he was brainwashed. He might not turn up for hours and hours, and meanwhile, we’re in the hands of a security guard who is going to take us for mind control treatment.”

      “Do you have a better plan?”

      “No.”

      “Right, on we go.”

To be continued...

 
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Other Episodes


» Sloth's Time Machine: Part One
» Sloth's Time Machine: Part Two
» Sloth's Time Machine: Part Four
» Sloth's Time Machine: Part Five



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