Back on the front it wasn’t good, as the soldier had told her the front line wasn’t where she remembered it. Preparations were being made to pull back even further as well. The field itself had mounds of spider tanks, in varying states of destroyed.

Some were reduced to burned-out husks, others had been shredded, some had holes in them or had been bludgeoned till the point of being inoperative. A few seemed undamaged, yet were unmoving. Everywhere she looked there were more, crawling over their fallen.

The Gunners had gotten good at taking them down, exploiting the weak joints, targeting the oddly less durable weapons. The spider tanks were oddly vulnerable for an invasion force, but Koi was certain that was the point. They had gained the high ground by creating a high ground out of their fallen.

It doesn’t seem very efficient; Koi thought to herself as she passed the last line of gun emplacements. Before they enemy didn’t seem to have any air force, allowing the army and Ares to have air superiority without a fight. Now the sky buzzed with heroes fighting men and women in grey uniforms.

The grey uniformed troops weren’t only in the sky, she could see them dotted around the battlefield as well. They either used the spider tanks for cover or bulletproof. Mostly in direct conflict with a hero, or taking pot shots at the encampments.

One of the bulletproof ones decided to take a chance and charge her. Taking a stance, she dodged under his knife swing and retaliated with her bat. She hit him in the midsection and despite initial resistance felt a crunch, he dropped to the ground.

She left him behind as she delved deeper into what was almost a maze of destroyed spider tanks. Slipping between them, she was able to attack the still operational ones from below as they crawled over the top. She was also able to get the drop on two more of the grey uniformed troops, disabling them both.

A fireball hit her from behind as she kneecapped the second one. Fireballs come in a lot of varieties, the ones Shatter threw around were burning liquid, some were burning gasses. This fireball was more a wave of force igniting the air it passed through. The force blew her off her feet slamming into one of the disabled tanks.

“You know I prefer it when people burn.” The man said approaching her slowly. A smart move since she was mostly unharmed, and only a little singed. “You fireproof?”

“A teammate of mine deals in fire and has informed me there is no such thing, just varying levels of resistance.” Koi hefted her bat waiting for the uniformed man to make the first move since she hadn’t seen him throw the fire she didn’t want to charge in blind.

“Smart, you know a lot of advanced don’t get that.” The man moved raking his finger through the air. Ignition started from his fingertips throwing five ribbons of fire at Koi.

Koi dropped to the ground avoiding the ribbons, she could have jumped to gain more distance from them but didn’t want to be airborne and need to dodge. They also seemed more directed than the ball had been; it was most likely a punch.

Koi brought herself to standing slower than she could have, “are you one of those sickos who like burning people?” She started advancing closing the twenty meters between them.

“What? No. I just hate fighting, flammable people go down faster.” He unleashed another fireball with a punch; Koi dodged to the side. Leveraging her movement, she pushed off the tank to her side into the air, coming down behind another tank she moved to flank the man.

He was ready as she moved out from behind cover, sending ten ribbons of fire in her direction. Dodging low she threw her bat at him, he moved to the left but winced as it clipped his shoulder.

Following her bat Koi delivered a punch to his temple, it deformed as he fell to the ground. She had assumed he had some physical defenses; she was wrong.

“Oh god.”

“Are we going to interfere now?”

“Of course not.”

“There are three people in your life who are arguably still innocent Alecia, and one of the just killed a man.”

“Everyone has to grow up sometime Gaslight.”

“You don’t believe that.”

“Stick to the plan.”

“Oh I’m sticking, sticking hard, I’m sticking to you.”

“That probably made more sense in your head.”

“Everyone is in my head, and everything.” Gaslight started humming to herself not really paying attention to the screens in front of them.

Most of them were showing the battle, usually overlaid with tactical maps and markers. Some showed the progress of the alien ship, and one showed the most likely location of Mag Mell.

“God I hope you sober up before we have to fight.”

“Will I? Will I really? Will I fight or will I be like a dream.”

“I gave you way too many painkillers. Oh joy, something’s happening you’re going to need to get changed.”

“You’re pretty wings.”

“Damn it.”

The dome seemed to expand upward, widening at the base and seemingly collapse in on itself. It seemed to pull upwards against the resistance of the dome left behind.They separated creating waves across both their surfaces. The Disk continued upwards, as the dome stayed on the ground seemingly the same.

“Uriel what the hell is that?”

“Remember a couple years back when I got drunk and tried to stick an active portal through a smaller active portal?”

“I stopped you because you kept making divide by zero jokes as you did it.”

“I would guess our daughter in that universe didn’t have anyone to stop her, and apparently it works.”

“What is it?”

“Three pieces of reality superimposed over each other. It shares the defenses of the dome, the resources of whatever is on the other side and doesn’t need to generate or connect to either.”

“Scale of 1-10 how bad.”

“A solid 8.5, we’re screwed.”


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  1. They either used the spider tanks for cover or bulletproof.
    I think you meant to have a ‘were’ in front of bulletproof.

    Hearing about Sophia doing portal experiments were she talked about dividing by zero makes me see just where Alecia got her personality from. It makes sense that this is the sort of thing that interdimensional invaders would have experimented with, too. It’s not like they’d care if they destroyed the universe(s) involved; they keep their stuff elsewhere.

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