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The Name Of A Hero
by Prometheus

"Commander, we must flee!" Cried a middle-aged agent to the Commander of Motavia. "Let's take the spaceship to Dezoris. Commander, they're approaching!"

"Impossible, I already gave it to agent Rolf to help him in his mission." Came the quiet reply. The Commander was standing in front of a huge window of the Administrative tower, watching the growing crowd forming at it's feet. Besides him the agents were nervous, unsure of what to do next. Their universe was falling to pieces. Palm was no more, all computers crashed at the same time, the teleportation array was off-line, no more electricity; all that has been taken for granted has been torn apart brutally. The crowd bellow were there for that reason, they wanted explanations, they wanted everything to come back to what once was.

When they'll understand that's impossible, the commander tought, they'll want someone to blame.

"Damn Rolf" An agent growled, "I knew that monster lover would only cause trouble, that's all his fault!" Whispers of approbation shot from every corner of the room. Encouraged by his peers, the blonde haired agent brushed his blue uniform and took a step closer to the Commander.

"This man was never an agent, sir, first you should never have given him this mission. I knew it the moment I saw him bring that 'creature' in his house... that guy, he always acted like he knew more than us. He always preferred the company of his 'pet' to ours. He didn't even have a family!"

The Commander calmly looked away from the window, right into the eyes of the agent who suddenly lost his superb pose. Slowly, silently, the Commander gazed deeply into the soul of each one of his subordinates. The room was deathly silent now, not covering the cries of the angry mob below anymore. The tall, white haired man seemed almost too calm in the surrounding panic. Maybe because he saw what was coming....

"Agent Rolf accomplished his mission, and that probably means Mother Brain is no more." Said the Commander on a level tone. "That also means that no one else than him would have done it. He was the only one who could see beyond what was just in front of him, that what was happening was more than a minor crisis. He was the only one ready to sacrifice everything to save what could be, even his life."

"And he had no family to care about, isn't it? So nothing would stand in the way when he'd have to give the final blow and wipe out our society?" replied the young agent harshly, shaken but not defeated. "I trusted you commander, and now we're going to be lynched by the people we were supposed to protect!"

"Unless, of course, one of us sacrifices himself for the rest" said a grim looking brown skinned agent. "We could tell them the Commander conspired to destroy Mother Brain, it 'IS' the truth after all!" All in the room, except the Commander, leaped in shock. The brown agent approached his former leader, his face locked in a sour expression. They stood face to face, the ice of the commander opposing the fire of the younger agent. Down below, the crowd was still growing like the proliferation of a disease. Crying, breathing like a single huge biomonster.

The agent spoke with authority, "Commander, consider yourself under arrest, you have the right to a just trial, you do not have the right to resist this arrogation, with the authority-

"You have no authority, agent," cut in the Commander, "Me neither, for that matter. The government who granted us our powers exploded weeks ago, and Mother Brain disappeared too. No matter how you look at it, our uniforms just lost all their value." For the first time, the voice of the commander wavered a bit. He was so tired! Weeks of preparing for the worst, in front only of unbelieving faces. Weeks of sleepless nights a he tried to find a solution. No matter what he and Rolf were going to do, they were about to lose. They had to destroy Mother Brain, even knowing what would come afterwards; the madness, the horror. The Commander sincerely hoped Rolf was dead rather than see this.

The Agent, whose name was Ares, drew a laser. "Still has value to me! We'll save what can be by making you an example! You'll pay for this traitor!" The other agents looked around themselves, unsure of what to do, unsure of which side to choose.

Many of the younger agents voiced in favor of Ares, while most of the old ones sided with the Commander. Soon the room was divided in two, while agent Ares and the Commander stood still, eyes locked.

"Think again, Ares. We won't survive without him." The blonde agent had sided with the Commander. He rose his hands who began to glow with fiery energy. Both sides slowly readied their weapons, prepared to fight their own comrades and friends. All knew it was wrong, a stupid and futile gesture, but they wanted to do it anyway out of spite, out of fear and confusion. Suddenly Ares aimed at the Commander. The blonde agent began to cast. Everyone leveled guns and readied knives. The Commander lowered his head in resignation.

Then a flash of light blinded everyone present; there was cries of surprise and fear. When the light recessed, a young man was standing among them, his blue hair and his face were smeared with blood, his armor and blue suit were thorn and dirty. His body was a mass of bruises and more serious wounds, but no matter how badly his body was hurt, it didn't matter. His blue eyes were those of a dead man, his soul left wherever he collected his injuries. Now, that was something the Commander didn't expect.

"Rolf!!!" For the first time for years the Commander was shocked. Everyone in the room stood still, suspended in motion. This instant held for several seconds, as slowly Rolf's dead blue eyes filled with disgust, and sadness.

"After only a few hours without Mother Brain you are already acting like biomonsters." It wasn't an exclamation, he sounded like he knew it would happen all along. Then Ares unfroze suddenly, swiveling his gun to bear on the new intruder. The Commander garbed the agent's arm and pulled up, the laser shot grazing Rolf's hair. The Commander wrestled with Ares for several minutes, both rolled on the floor as they tried to get a secure grip on the laser. The people in the room lowered arms and watched in awe as they saw two of their own fight each other. Then Ares felt a hand on his shoulder, and the next thing he was aware of, he was facing the ground, immobilized in an armlock.

"Look at him..." Said Rolf in an imperious voice, from his position on Ares's back. "Is that what you want our world to be from right now? This isn't why we destroyed Mother Brain! We did it so you could think for yourselves, be free and have your own future, and not some illusion of a golden prison. We did it because Mother Brain promised 'no' future, We did it because there was no other way." Then agent Rolf released Ares, got up, and walked over to the door.

"Agent Rolf, stay here, I need your mission report." The Commander had got up and had spoken with authority.

"My mission is not over Commander, people down there are waiting for the last act." Rolf opened the door manually, pushing the panels aside. "But I can tell you that Mother Brain has been destroyed, as well as its builders. All present at the battle except one has been killed." Rolf turned around when he felt a hand on his shoulder. The young blonde Agent was there, looking away, trying not to stare in the glazed eyes of his comrade.

"Rolf, don't throw your life away like that! I-I'm sorry I ever had hated you, whatever you did I know now I could not do it. We need you, Rolf, we need your strength." But then Rolf walked away, towards a staircase.

"Sorry, no more strength left. Now you need the Commander, He is the one to rebuild Motavia."

There was a long silence, then the crowd down below fell into a frenzy, from the window the Commander could see a lone figure being torn to shreds. The blonde young man was visibly fighting back a sob.

The Commander closed his eyes and, for the first time in his life, prayed. He prayed so that the light accepts Rolf and his friends, he prayed that history would someday remember them as the heroes they are, he prayed for the soul of Nei, this half monster which so many forgot she was also half human. And finally prayed for the people of Motavia and Dezoris, as they were beginning an age of chaos and ignorance...

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