Hahli’s next move was to be using her power to stir up the ocean to try to wreck the Makuta ships. But before she could do so, everything changed all around her. The stars brightened overhead. The breeze turned warm. The earth shook in a gentle tremor. She didn’t know how, but somehow she was certain: the Great Spirit had awakened.
Beyond the city walls, a storm rose, tossing the Makuta fleet about like toys. Yet that did nothing to deter the Rahkshi, who kept on coming. They had broken through the walls in four places and were rampaging through Ta-Metru. Nothing could stop them, it seemed. At least until the ground erupted in front of them and a horde of Bohrok emerged. It was not a large number – only those specimens that were asleep in the Archives and the small nest below it – but it was enough. The Rahkshi attacked immediately, and the Bohrok responded. The two sides were locked in combat, and as they fought, the Mahri and the Order agents picked off Rahkshi at will. The battle seesawed back and forth, with the Rahkshi never realizing that all the Bohrok wanted was to get to the island of Mata Nui. Had the Rahkshi just gotten out of their way, the fight would have been over.
* * *
From the pages of Takanuva’s journal…
We felt the universe jolt and tremble, as if the Great Cataclysm had happened again. But somehow we knew that this was no second disaster, but a sign of renewal and hope. I looked at the Toa Nuva, and I could see in their eyes that they know – after so long, they have achieved their destiny. Mata Nui is awake once more!
The journey to Metru Nui took ages, or so it seemed, despite the speed of the vehicles. We were all exhausted and just longing to see our friends again. No doubt Jaller and the other Toa Mahri were wondering where I had disappeared to. I had no idea what had been happening in the universe since I left Metru Nui. Had the Order attacked the Brotherhood? Had the Toa Mahri been pressed into service? Was Metru Nui still standing?
Home! I can see the Coliseum, the spires of Ko-Metru, the Great Forge of Ta-Metru, and the beautiful gem that is the Great Temple. We made it… We’re alive… and we have won!
* * *
The city suddenly shook from a series of explosions. An Order agent atop the walls yelled “Fliers! Incoming!” Hahli looked up to see three incredibly fast aircraft soar over the city, bank as one, and head back to where the ships waited. One slowed and dipped its wing to her, and she recognized Pohatu in the pilot’s seat. The Toa Nuva had come home.
Pohatu flew his vessel back out of the city to finish off the ships. Meanwhile, Lewa and Kopaka dove, peppering the Rahkshi with blasts of light. The sight seemed to rally the city’s defenders, who surged back toward the gaps in the walls. Led by Jaller and Hewkii, they drove the Rahkshi back.
Finally, the storm was over. The Brotherhood ships had gone to the bottom of the Silver Sea. The walls around the city had been battered down, but the rubble was littered with dead Kraata and shattered Rahkshi armor. Those of the invaders that were intact had flown away, provided they could escape the blasters of the Jetrax, Rockoh, and Axalara. Metru Nui was safe – and as the Toa Nuva confirmed, the Great Spirit had awakened. The power of the Brotherhood of Makuta was broken for all time. Turaga Dume and Turaga Vakama appeared side-by-side to announce that tomorrow would be a city-wide day of celebration in the Coliseum.
But Hahli did not feel like celebrating, even now. She could not help but remember Matoro, who had given his life that Mata Nui might live. And despite all the wounded and the dying among the defenders, she could not help but feel it had all been a little too… easy. True, there had been some unexpected help: the airships, the Bohrok, the storm. But they had faced an army of Rahkshi. Something told her they should not have won, at least not with so much of the city still intact.
She smiled. Turaga Nokama would have chided her for worrying so much. No matter how things seemed, the Great Spirit was awake for the first time in over one thousand years. Light had triumphed over darkness, hadn’t it? The Toa had achieved their destiny and saved the universe, hadn’t they? And that meant all was well again. Nothing very bad could happen now, could it?
Hahli turned to head for Ga-Metru, humming a song Nokama had once taught her. One written long ago that spoke of hope for tomorrow. Perhaps, if not for the music, she might have heard the sound of dark laughter on the wind.
* * *
From the pages of Takanuva’s journal…
Turaga Dume welcomed us warmly, even sparing me a lecture about deserting my post. There must be a celebration, he says, of the Toa Nuva’s triumph and the awakening of Mata Nui. More, there must be a tribute to those Toa who lost their lives in the fight against the Makuta.
What an experience this has been. I have been a part of many celebrations of the Toa’s heroics – after they first defeated the Makuta, after the Bohrok were driven off – but to be a part of one as a Toa is an amazing thing. I look back at some of the things I have seen in recent days – a dimension where evil Toa ruled, another where there was no evidence of any Toa at all – and I realize how fortunate I am to have adventured beside heroes like Tahu, Gali, and Kopaka. Hopefully, this day is the start of a new era of peace for our people.
Turaga Dume made a beautiful speech, honoring the heroes who had given their lives to save the universe. Looking back, I wish I could remember Toa Lhikan, or that I had gotten to know Matoro better. Somehow, you expect your friends to live forever… but I guess nothing lasts forever. Who knows? Someday, all that we have done, all that we are, may be nothing more than faded carvings on some long-abandoned Wall of History. But now isn’t the time for such grim thoughts… this is a celebration, after all.
I am writing this from deep in the Archives… Gali is missing… Tahu badly injured… I don’t understand… how could this have happened? They’re coming… we have to keep moving… Onua says he knows a place we can hide and regroup. More later…