Sapphire VII


By Rotwang (


Everybody was anxiously waiting for the boat to return.

Sapphire hung onto one of the ropes and it was clear something was up as her cold, angry stare gave everybody the creeps.

"They’ve kidnapped my brother and his family. They want me in exchange."

"We heard about the Luddite mission. Eight dead …" Onyx went.

"I’d be lying if I said I regretted that." Synthia said. "But these guys must be stopped once and for all !"

Sapphire looked at her friends for a long moment.

"They killed Emerald, Ruby, Diamond, Jet and …" Her voice quivered. "Damien …"

Atana and Onyx held onto Jonathan.

"I can’t ask anybody to help me. I must do this alone." She said.

Jonathan reached out for her.

"I’m going to get to the bottom of this …" He said.

Synthia looked at Sapphire. "You need me ?"

Sapphire put her hands on Synthia’s shoulders.

"You teached me how to defend myself. I’ll be fine."

"I was itching to test out some heavy weapons on those bastards …" Synthia said. "Just be careful …"


Jonathan gave Sapphire a last hug, just before she got into the limo.

"Come back !" He said as if he knew he would never see her back. "We’ve been through so much."

Synthia slung a six-barreled rocket launcher almost as big as her, over her shoulder and gave Sapphire a thumbs up. "Just whistle and I’ll charge in guns blazing !" She said with the cockiest of smiles.

Jonathan let go of her and Sapphire had a look at the girls.

They all smiled and kept up a brave face, but they were all scared for her life.

"I love you all …" She said and jumped into the limo casting one last glance at Jonathan.

It was a long drive to an empty warehouse in the port of Marseilles.

A man was waiting for her. She recognized him as Seth Galbraith.

"It was you all along !" She said getting out.

He gave her a welcoming smile. "I had an android double take my place that day."

"Where is Ben ?" She asked.

"All in good time. First we make sure that alien that bonded with Major Sanchez and you is not a threat to us."

He snapped his fingers and two men brought some kind of strange device.

"It’s an inhibitor that can turn off the alien and your cybernetics. Try something funny and you will assist helplessly to the death of your brother !" Seth went angrily.

"Release them and I’ll cooperate." Sapphire said.

"Okay …" He said, while the two men slipped the collar over her neck and chest.

She felt some vertigo, but managed to stay upright.

"I want to see my brother !"

He snapped his fingers again and a set of combat cyborgs and combattroids trained their guns on her.

"Bring out the guest."

"Ben ! Are you alright ?" She asked seeing him.

"I’m fine … " He said. "More than fine."

She sensed something. "Ben ? You are their hostage … ?" She asked, fearing the eventual answer.

He smiled. "No, we are partners, actually."

Sapphire almost choked with rage and consternation.

"I guess an explanation is due." Ben went, walking down the stairs.

"You see, the Luddites in America are a very powerful force, but the extremists have mismanaged that power to the point of ruining the nation beyond repair. The more liberal factions decided it was time to get rid of them, once and for all …"

Seth helped Sapphire to a chair.

"It was a vicious covert war. The extremists were fanatical, but we had a technological advantage they simply would not emulate, even on the brink of defeat." Ben explained.

"One mission was critical. The assassination of Sam Lewinsky, our beloved founder. The CIA provided us with a highly qualified assassin, Major Anna Sanchez. She infiltrated his staff and worked on a plan to get him. But somehow he got to her, causing her to switch sides." Ben said.

"Lewinsky and Sanchez fled with an incredible secret. We tracked them down for weeks, until we found them in an abandoned factory, owned by MB&PR."

"That’s where we get in. Lewinsky had damning information on the abuse of technology, including the truth about the most dangerous drug ever, Brainhammer …" Seth began to explain. "Cyborg sales were rapidly going down. A special cell in the company decided to create a new market …"

"You invented Brainhammer ! So you could sell Betty Ford-chips !" Sapphire suddenly went.

"It goes beyond that …" Seth said with a diabolical smile. "Brainhammer, the most addictive substance ever known, but also quite lethal. And a BF-chip just stimulates certain portions of the brain so the addiction is put on hold."

Sapphire suddenly remembered she had such a chip inside her …

"But the BF-chip has another function, hitherto unknown …" Seth said. "It can influence people any way we want …"

"Millions of people have the chip." Sapphire said.

"Exactly !" Seth went. "We can control them like puppets."

"Lewinsky was a master hacker and he discovered that the chips were manufactured in a robot factory he could hack into and changed the specifics in such a way, only one item could activate it." Ben said.

"But Lewinsky had hidden that item." Seth continued. "I must admit Sam had guts to hide it as one of our own products, as the exterior of a sexaroid body…"

"You see, Lewinsky was the man who found the symbiote. It had crashed to earth like a meteor. Lewinsky dug it up and soon discovered it was no ordinary space rock … Oh no, it was an alien probe, from a technology infinitely superior to ours. The same night, he managed to communicate with it and found out what its purpose was." Ben explained.

"He died before we could extract that information out of him." Seth said. "But he did manage to make it work and make it the link in the BF-chip activation code …" Seth paused. ".

Sapphire watched the two men.

"Now, we will rid you of this symbiote …" Seth said and pushed a button on his remote.

Sapphire screamed in complete agony. Pain coursed through the symbiote, passing it on to her. Unable to cope with such intense pain, she fainted.

"That’ll make it easier to operate on her." Seth said.

"Poor girl, even the genetic test I gave her was rigged." Ben said. "We really had her going …" Ben almost sounded regretful "I doubt we’ll ever know who you really were. She was the wrong person in the wrong spot. A nameless face in the crowd."

"You can have her doc." Seth said to a group of people in medical gear who were waiting in a corner.

Ben and Seth watched as the medical team prepared her for surgery.

Sapphire ?

A voice called her.

"It’s me, Sam Lewinsky." Said a male voice. "And Anna Sanchez, I was the one who helped you fight." Said the female voice.

"Listen to us … "

Sapphire suddenly woke up.

The surgeons and nurses were startled.

Sapphire got up and stared at Ben and Seth. "You tricked me !" She said.

"Kill her !" Seth ordered. "Put a bullet in her brain ! The symbiote is defenseless without her to guide it !"

The medical personnel scattered…

Dozens of laser dots covered her body…

"Fire !" Seth howled …

Guns blazed …

Explosions and smoke filled the spot where she had been standing.

"I only hope a portion of the symbiote survives." Seth confessed to Ben.

A sleek, armoured black shape erupted from the inferno and leapt through the air at the cyborgs assembled up on the gantry. Obsidian sliced through the cyborgs as if they were made of cardboard.

A hand slammed through a heavily armoured chest and came out again, tearing out hydraulic systems and sparkling cables.

Some cyborgs had vicious hand to hand weapons such as built-in chainsaws and vibroblades that could cut through steel like butter, but their blows glanced off Sapphire.

"Kill her !" Seth screamed to the cyborgs and combatroids on the gantry on the other side of the warehouse.

Rockets and missiles flew away at their screaming companions. Explosions rocked the building, shattering windows and destroying the gantry.

Lasers and plasma bolts pockmarked the debris until nothing moved again.

"Is she dead ?" Ben dared to ask sticking his head from behind the cover of a few wooden crates.

"MMM …" Seth went, shaking his head.

And then a black projectile catapulted towards the other gantry. Again, Obsidian effortlessly sliced through metal and composite armours.

Just as she lifted a huge red cyborg pleading for his life, a bright light shone inside the warehouse.

The massive black helicopter hovered at her level and trained its guns and missile pods at her. It was so bulky and imposing, it looked like a flying nuclear power plant with attitude

Hellfire III MMR anti-tank missiles, rockets and 30mm depleted uranium shells blasted the gantry.

But Seth noticed a black shape slipping away just before it was destroyed.

He saw Obsidian pick up a steel pole below and hold it back like a spear

She aimed it at the helicopter above her and hurled the makeshift spear at it. It sliced through the corrugated iron walls, through the helicopter itself and barring the rotor. The rotor blades bent and shattered as they hit the steel pole and the gunship fell out of the sky in a big explosion.

Obsidian turned towards Seth who had been watching the whole scene.

"Now it’s between you and me." She said.

Seth had his hands casually stuffed in the pockets of his blazer and gave her a nasty grin. "Not yet !"

An explosion flung her to the ground and a massive foot shattered the concrete.

Two 20-foot tall battle walkers opened the walls of the warehouse and kept firing their 75mm autocannons at her. Obsidian struggled to get to her feet, but the walkers were fast and one of them brought a two ton foot down on her …

… And twisted it, like somebody putting out a cigarette

The other bent and grabbed her limp form. The first one grabbed an arm and began to pull it.

A feast of explosions rocked the two walkers who dropped Obsidian.

Another salvo brought one of them down and the other seemed badly damaged.

Out of the smoke, a wisp of a woman carrying two rocket launchers stepped inside. It was Synthia wearing her trademark little black dress, sunglasses and suede fingerless gloves.

She dropped the launchers and unstrapped the guns from her back. The almost puny looking android carried enough guns and ammo to single-handedly fight and win several World Wars …

Obsidian was slowly recovering and became aware of the situation. Even though it was badly damaged, the walker was still very much operational and a single shot would obliterate Synthia. Obsidian concentrated, bunching her fists and visibly straining to cause the walker to jerk and lurch like a drunk before limply collapsing onto the already downed walker.

Seth’s face turned to panic. "How did you do that ?"

No deigning to give an answer, Obsidian leapt all the way to Seth and held him up in the air by the throat.

Seth gasped.

"You’re finished." She said coldly.

"Not quite." He said and grabbed her arm.

At first, the pressure was strong, but then it became enormous. And even the symbiote had to yield before his uncanny grip.

He dropped to the ground and adjusted his shirt and tie. "Did you really think I was helpless ?"

Obsidian watched him. "Your move." She said.

In a flash, he attacked. Obsidian could barely parry his blow, which sent shockwaves through her body.

Blow after blow landed on her. Blows that could bring buildings down, but she blocked, parried and dodged as much as she could.

"Fifty years of cybertechnology to design the ultimate cyborg …" He said during a brief respite. "Me !"

Obsidian attacked and slammed her fist as hard as she could into his chest, but the blow glanced off.

"Reactive force field ! The harder you hit me, the stronger it gets !" Seth howled and his fingers sliced through Obsidian’s chest.

Holding her tight, he grabbed her left arm and tore at it. Rather than go with the damaged limb, the symbiote flowed back into her body, leaving only a skeletal metal arm in his hands.

"Like a lizard shedding its tail !" He said and tossed her across the room.

Synthia had been waiting for an opening and fired her guns at him.

But the railgun and gyrojet projectiles bounced off Seth, merely ripping his clothes to bits.

"I’ll tear you apart later." Seth said with a diabolical smile and turned his attention to Sapphire.

The symbiote had seemingly retreated and changed back to her sexaroid form.

"Is this the superior alien technology ?" He asked.

Synthia aimed a gun at Seth’s back, but gritted her teeth in frustration. If she missed, Sapphire would be blown to bits.

He grabbed Sapphire by her hair and slapped her.

"You fucking bitch ! I’ll show you !" He kicked her viciously in the face.

Sapphire’s head reeled back under the terrible blow.

An elbow smashed into her shoulder and several actuators broke down.

He grabbed her leg with two hands and bent it, tearing off the foot, leaving the symbiote skin to release it.

"I will bring new meaning to the word agony !" He said and for a moment, he looked like a monster from hell.

"Yaaah !" Synthia jump-kicked him away from Sapphire, but she was still out and couldn’t move.

Seth turned around and a less than human cry came from his mouth. He clotheslined Synthia into the ground. And then with a forceful karate-chop, sliced her body in half, just below her breasts.

"Stop it !" It was the calmness of the voice that pulled him out of his berserker fury. He turned and saw Sapphire balancing on one foot, with only one arm and staring at him …

Her gaze was so intense it would’ve caused a mountain to shatter into dust.

"You monster." She said coldly. "Just die !"

Her eyes lit up and Seth’s face became a mask of fear.

He could not move, just standing limply as his head collapsed, his brains seeping out, screaming his dying agony.

Synthia could not prevent her head from constantly jerking to the left. "How did you do that ?"

Sapphire did not answer her and merely collapsed.


Synthia heard a voice calling out.

"Sapphire !" The panicky voice belonged to Jonathan.

"Over here !" Synthia screamed.

"Oh God !" He went as he saw her.

"I can be fixed." Synthia went. "I’ve seen worse."

"And Sapphire ?" He asked, holding Synthia’s hand.

"Over there." She said and pointed at what looked like a giant cocoon.

"It just formed over her." Synthia said, her head still jerking to the left.

"What about the others ." Jonathan asked.

"Sapphire killed Seth and Ben was hit by a rogue projectile." She pointed to the body slumped over the ridge of the crater.

"Jonathan ?" Atana and Onyx appeared, followed by the other girls.

"Listen to this !" Onyx went and handed him a palmtop TV.

"… The swarm just entered the atmosphere. It seems to be moving towards the Mediterranean, most likely the coast of Southern France …" The newscaster went.

"You can see it with the naked eye !" Ice went looking up through the holed roof.

"What is it ?" Jonathan asked.

It’s alright Jonathan. Said a familiar voice.

He looked around and focussed on the cocoon. "Sapphire ?" The voice was in his head …

The cocoon shook and suddenly opened and out popped a metal skeleton that crashed onto the floor … Everybody stared at it with open mouth. They alternated looking at the sky and Sapphire’s cocoon.

"They all look the same." Velvet went as the strange swarm slowly descended over them. She could see hundreds of thousands of objects that looked like … Sapphire’s cocoon.

They obscured the sky, hovering in the air a dozen meters above them.

Jonathan didn’t even dare to touch Sapphire’s cocoon out of fear of harming her. But he knew she was all right, she had told him so, even if he feared it was only a hallucination.

Hours passed as people massed to watch the swarm hanging over the city, some almost within jumping reach.

Jonathan and the girls looked at the cocoon and waited. Almost at the very moment his patience began to run out and he wanted to break it open, a blinding light seamed the cocoon apart. Everybody had to shield his or her eyes against the intense light. Jonathan risked a quick peek and found the light infinitely brilliant, but no longer blinding.

And in the remains of the cocoon, he saw an angel …

She smiled at him and he felt an intense joy in his heart. She was the most beautiful thing he had ever seen, something beyond description, beyond the most intense imagination, something so pure and beautiful bringing intense joy to his heart … Sapphire.

"The symbiotes are here to help us. They decided we were ready for it." Sapphire said.

"Wha- …" Onyx went and her feet no longer touched the ground.

Velvet tried to hold her, but she began to float as well. They slowly rose in the air while two cocoons opened above them.

"Take my hand." Sapphire said and held her hand out.

Touching her was the most intense experience Jonathan had ever felt. She rose in the sky and pulled him towards a cocoon.

"You’ll like this …" She said with a gentle smile, guiding him to the cocoon.

Synthia watched the others slowly rise up towards the cocoons. Atana waved at her and seemed filled with joy as she entered the cocoon. And then she felt herself slowly rise upward. "Hey ! I’m not human !" She said. "I can’t become …" She struggled for words.

The infinitely beautiful being Sapphire had become, held Jonathan’s hand as he slipped into the cocoon, he instantly felt home, like returning to the womb …

"I love you." She said and looked around her as thousands of people slowly floated up to the cocoons …

Even Synthia felt the bright light as she entered the cocoon. "Sapphire ! I can’t change, can I ?"

"Sure you can !" Sapphire said and watched the other swarms that were descending over the Earth.

She turned and held Jonathan’s cocoon and patiently waited.

A few hours passed and a hand suddenly emerged from the cocoon, filled with a warm light of pure joy.

Two hands held each other, a feeling of such passion their light became ever more intense.

"I understand !" Jonathan went.

They held each other and in a flash of light flew in the direction of the stars, at the speed of light …

"This is unreal !" Synthia went coming out of the cocoon.

"It’s more than real …" Onyx went and held out her arm for Synthia, who still could not understand what she had become. A smiling Atana joined them. "Amazing Grace …" She began to sing and her song echoed through the universe, filling it with light …




The End ?