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EpilogueThree weeks later...
Brilliant stars shone on the black sea above Fastoon, cool night breezes flowing over the dunes, carrying the sweet, spicy smell of desert plants. The whole scene was warmly lit by the silver light of a full moon. It was beautiful, but the beauty was lost on the small figure sitting on an old wall.
Clank sighed. In the distance, he could see the glow from Fastoon city. The sounds of a city drifted over, ships engines, horns, laughter. And somewhere in that now vibrant city, his best friend, his soul brother, his family. Clank knew what he had to do was right. It was logical.
So why did it hurt so?
There was the crunch of sand underfoot behind him, and someone sat down next to him. Clank didn't look up.
"Hello, Ratchet. I thought you were with Jasmine."
"I just wanted to wander for a bit. I've been so busy lately I haven't had time to explore."
"How is Shona? Is she settling in alright?"
Ratchet smiled. Clank couldn't help but notice how happy his friend was, how he
Chapter 27: Return.Ratchet slowly slid into conciousness. As he rose up out of the black, sound began to filter through, distant, muffled voices growing clearer.
"At least he is looking better these days."
"Oh yes, the state he was in at the start, my word...He's lucky to be alive!"
"Why has he not woken up then?"
"Recovery is a slow process, Clank. His body is probably just gathering it's strength...Hello, some things happening..."
He slowly opened his eyes. For a moment, all he could see was a cracked white ceiling, before his vision was eclipsed by the face of...
"Clank?" His voice sounded strange, thin and distant in his ears. His chest ached with a steady, dull throbbing.
"Hello, Ratchet." Clank said, smiling. "We have been very worried about you. How are you feeling?"
"Kinda sore. Kinda tired. But OK, otherwise."
He struggled into a sitting position, wincing at the sting as he accidentally tugged at the IV line in his wrist.
"Where am I?"
"Fastoon hospital." This voice was one he didn't kn
Chapter 26: Honour betrayedJasmine let out a scream of anguish as she saw Ratchet crumpled on the ground. Still numb with shock, she turned to the portal, gripping her wrench tightly as the shooter stepped out, shreds of the strange energy clinging to him.
"Hey there, hot stuff. Sorry 'bout Goldy there. Itchy trigger finger, you know!"
The word she spat was unfamiliar to the listeners, with the exception of the Zenithi, a number of whom had spent some time of Fastoon before Tachyon's attack. One quickly covered Shona's ears with her wings.
"Easy there, sweet heart." said Fenris. "Words hurt, you know..."
Ignoring the drama, Clank and Mia hurried to Ratchets side. He was pale under his fur, breath coming in shallow gasps as he struggled for air. One hand clutched a nasty wound on his chest. Mia was quite good at healing and first aid, and she could clearly see he was losing a lot of blood....
Jasmine snarled at Fenris. Rage, fear and grief filled her. Instinct called
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