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Gfantis vs the Guest Monsters

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GFANTIS VS GUEST MONSTER BOOK 1

All of the characters presented here are copyrighted and owned by their creators. The Guest Monsters and their accompanying characters appear with the permission of the authors/creators

Cover Art by Frank Parr

Contents

Forewords

Gfantis vs Nemesis

Gfantis, the Duke, Zargatron: POWER STRUGGLE

Gfantis vs Dorugan

Gfantis vs The Zombie Kaiju

Gfantis vs Durontus

Gfantis and Talos: The Arrival of Araddon

Gfantis vs Irokus

Gfantis vs King Komodo

Gfantis vs Raiju

Gfantis vs Chimera

Gfantis vs Legendary Beast Werewolf: In the Shadow of the ROCS

Gfantis, Kodoja, Atomic Rex: At World’s End

Gfantis vs Marugrah

The Squash in Odaiba (Gfantis vs Itara)

The References: Wrath of Gfantis

The Intruder (Gfantis vs Megachiradon)

Gfantis vs Bubbles vs Sade Dawn of Pity

 

 

 

 

 

Gfantis vs Guest Monsters Foreword

 

If you are a fan of Japanese monster movies, odds are collecting Bandai toys is not enough. These movies have inspired your creative impulse whether it be drawing illustrations and comics or assembling dioramas for kaiju model kits. For some of us, our impulse is to write stories. Back in the 90s, fans like myself submitted Godzilla stories to G-Fan magazine where we could see our work in print. G-Fan published some of the best writers like Skip Peel, George Thomas, and Jay Grymyr. What made their work special was that they tackled their subject matter in the same manner as a professional writer. They set the gold standard. However, all good things come to an end. In 2002, Toho asked JD Lees, the editor of G-Fan, to cease publishing fan fiction using their characters. Godzilla, Rodan, Mothra, King Ghidorah, many of the fans’ favorite kaiju became off limits. Fan writers had a choice. They could either use a non-Toho kaiju like Gappa or Gamera, or invent your own. Many fans chose to invent your own. That brings us to the anthology you have before you—Gfantis vs Guest Monsters.

Gfantis—also known as Gfantis, Prince of the Monsters—is a creation of Daikaiju Enterprises, the publisher of G-Fan. He is a bipedal dinosaur with one crescent horn set between his eyes and four swept-back horns at the back of his head. His body has a passing resemblance to Titanosaurus (the kaiju from Terror of Mechagodzilla) with the elongated neck, orange hide, and black scales. He thrives on sunlight for energy and like all good kaiju, he gets into scrapes with other monsters.

Matthew Dennion has been chronicling Gfantis’ battles for the pages of G-Fan. Matt has an impressive body of work behind his name. His novels include Chimera: Scourge of the Gods, Operation R.O.C., Atomic Rex, Polar Yeti, and Atomic Rex: Wrath of the Polar Yeti. He co-created the Watchtower Universe with illustrator John Opal. For the past three years he has been writing kaiju fiction for G-Fan, including the Gfantis vs Guest Monster stories. Matt has lived up to the same gold standard set by Skip, George and Jay back in the 90s. Check out the opening paragraph to Gfantis, Kodoja, Atomic Rex: At World’s End:

Juliet sat alone on the Jersey shore as waves lolled peacefully onto an empty beach. Decades ago, the beach would have been full of teenagers like her swimming in the surf and basking in the sun, but that was before the end of the world. That was before the coming of the kaiju. Juliet coughed and a mouthful of blood shot out onto the sand. Juliet looked at the blood as she contemplated the events from the three years prior that had brought both her and the rest of mankind to this point.

Matt tells you the impact the kaiju has had on the world with one cough. Don’t you want to find out what happened to Juliet? I sure did.

The Guest Monsters are kaiju created by other writers. The designs for these monsters are on par with the monsters one would see in the films. King Komodo, created by Mike Bogue and Todd Tennant, is a Komodo dragon mutated by radiation. His forelegs have morphed into arms. He has three rows of spikes running down the entire length of his spine. He can spit out his mucus as atomic fireballs. Zargatron, from Tim Price’s novel Big In Japan, is the demon servant of the Yokai witch Oko Rikoku. He has a pair of wings, four arms, and the face of a bull. The witch uses him in her schemes for world domination. Raiju, from K.H. Koehler’s Raiju: A Kaiju Hunter Novel, is a kami, an ancient god (or in this case a goddess) of incredible power. She can take on human form when she speaks with her keeper, Kevin Takashi. In battle she reveals her true form, a kaiju that looks like a cross between a dragon and a lion.

So this is what is in store for you. Original kaiju, new adventures in whole new worlds created by your fellow fans. What’s special about this book is that it’s a milestone. Kaiju fiction has come a long ways from the fan stories about Godzilla. Matt, Tim, Mike, Todd, K. H. Koehler, and their peers have pushed this form of storytelling to a point where it is field in its own right. It is as much a part of fantasy & science fiction as alternate history, space opera, and sword & sorcery, and they did it without the help of the big-name publishers or recognition from the fantasy & science fiction establishment. But don’t be surprised if Baen or Ace picks up one of their books. Don’t be surprised if one of their kaiju makes it to the big screen. These writers are not done. They are working on new stories as you read this foreword. That’s why I say this book is a milestone. The best is yet to come. As someone who has written his share of Godzilla fan fiction, I am amazed and proud of their accomplishments. Who knows? Maybe King Komodo or Zargatron, or Gfantis, the Prince of Monsters, will unseat Godzilla as the King of the Monsters.

 

 

Neil Riebe

May 2016

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There Are Giants in the Earth…

Let me start this forward off by answering the following: what is a kaiju? That may seem like a rhetorical question to most fans who are reading this anthology, but let’s ask the question anyway, just to be clear as crystal to the new fans this sub-genre of sci-fi fandom is increasingly attracting these days.

For the record, the word “kaiju” is a shortened form of what should more properly be called “dai kaiju” (sometimes spelled as a single word by us English-speaking gaijin, depending on one’s sense of lingual aesthetics). “Kaiju” is a Japanese word which roughly corresponds to the English term “monster,” but more specifically in its native language as “mysterious beast.” Which, I suppose, can qualify as “monster” depending on how one may choose to look at the creature in question. When the creature discussed happens to be enormously dangerous, then there is perhaps less to argue about regarding whether or not it’s appropriate to call it a “monster.” The word “dai” in Japanese corresponds to “giant,” so when combined with “kaiju” you get “giant monster,” thereby making it more clear what type of strange and mysterious beast we’re talking about: one of immense size, thus adding to its power immeasurably and giving it the unpleasant but undeniably cool ability to literally smash brick and mortar skyscrapers to pieces as easily as you might smash a mini-fortress comprised of LEGO blocks.

We fans in the English-speaking world who prefer to make things simple when typing have gotten used to simply saying “kaiju” when referring to these giant mysterious beasts. This term, particularly its abbreviated form of “kaiju,” has become much better known to the greater sci-fi and horror fandom thanks to its extensive usage in the recent American Godzilla comics published by IDW, Oni Press’ popular comic book series Kaijumax, and films such as Pacific Rim. Alas, Legendary Pictures decided to forgo using that term for its own fledgling kaijuverse, beginning with Godzilla (2014), by instead coming up with its own acronym for such creatures: MUTO (Massive Unidentified Terrestrial Organisms). Well, Legendary can call their giant mysterious beasts whatever they want, but to most of the fans, they will be kaiju, and we will be kaiju-fans!

So, we understand that kaiju are, as far as we’re concerned, mysterious beasts of gargantuan size and literal city-smashing power. Among the best examples we can think of are: Godzilla, Gamera, King Kong (sometimes, depending upon how large he is in any given iteration), Mothra, and other popular second-stringers like Rodan, King Ghidorah, the entire bizarre rogues gallery of Ultraman, Guilala, Gorgo, Yongary, the trio of human-devouring beasts from the classic Rampage! video game (that would be George the giant ape, Lizzie the giant humanoid lizard, and Ralph the giant werewolf!); and of course, the monstrous antagonists of the Pacific Rim franchise. Sometimes kaiju are stand alone with only the human military to oppose them, often with great difficulty, until the respective kaiju’s weakness is inevitably discovered; other times, they exist in a universe filled with other kaiju, who often battle each other for territorial supremacy while a hapless human population is caught in the middle of the catastrophic fiasco; still other times they are used mostly as gargantuan foot soldiers by invading, imperialistic alien races against one or more sentai heroes… “sentai” being the Japanese word corresponding to kaiju-fighting super-heroes, with the numerous incarnations of Tsuberaya Productions’ Ultraman being perhaps the most famous example; or gigantic robots controlled by human soldiers -- think the Shogun Warriors, or the jaeger – German word for “hunter” – popularized by the Pacific Rim franchise, e.g., Gipsy Danger and Striker Eureka, or even the various Zords piloted by the Power Rangers who unite their disparate components to form the single Mega-Zord robotic warrior.

There are also instances where kaiju have appeared in super-hero universes, and find themselves knocking heads with the traditional super-heroes of those remarkable realities. Examples include Godzilla’s sojourn through the Marvel Universe in his own late 1970s American comic book when Marvel had the license to the character, or this anthology’s author Matt Dennion’s Watchtower Universe, where kaiju and super-heroes have an important connection to the fate of that world (more on this in a minute).

And of course, there are some instances where kaiju themselves act as gigantic super-heroes of sorts, seeking to protect humans from harm, and that would include Gamera; the heroic versions of Godzilla seen in the Showa Era films of the 1970s and the Hanna-Barbera animated series of the late ‘70s; the second version of Tri-Star’s Godzilla (i.e., “Zilla”) seen in Godzilla: The Series of the late 1990s; and various iterations of King Kong, including the Toho version from King Kong Escapes (1967), the animated American TV series of that year which tied into it, and the more recent Kong: The Animated Series (where the suspected ability of some versions of Kong to change size is finally made official!), and the Netflix exclusive Kong: King of the Apes.

Of great importance to this anthology’s major kaiju protagonist, Gfantis (more on this guy soon!), is the more recent concept of the guardian kaiju, one who is assigned by innate forces of the biosphere to guard the planet – not humanity per se, who may be stomped if they get in the way – against any possible menace, including other kaiju and alien invaders. This category has its root in the Toho stable with Bagan in the aborted film Mothra vs. Bagan (later turning up in the 1993 video game as a pawn of alien invaders in Super Godzilla); Battra, Bagan’s replacement on the 1992 release roster, with Godzilla and Mothra: Battle for Earth; and the Yamato Monsters of the unique G-film Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack (or GMK, for the frugal typists among us; 2001). However, the conception would come to full realization on the big screen with Legendary’s version of Godzilla, who first appeared in Godzilla (2014).

Many fans of the kaiju sub-genre of sci-fi/horror/fantasy believe that such entities have no history in folklore and mythology, as do monsters of less profound size such as vampires, werewolves, zombies, or even man-made monsters like Frankenstein’s creation, who have their folklore equivalents in the legend of the Golem, and stories of alchemists creating homunculi. Instead, they believe that kaiju were created for the silver screen, and first appeared in early 1950s cinema with the Rhedosaurus in Ray Harryhausan’s The Beast From 20,000 Fathoms (1953) and the far more popular and iconic Godzilla (1954; released in America two years later with the aptly modified title Godzilla, King of the Monsters).

This belief is actually untrue, as creatures we would now readily identify as kaiju have appeared throughout world mythology and folklore. This would include the Biblical beasts of tremendous size, destructive power, and spectacular majesty such as Leviathan and Behemoth. Need some evidence for this? Simply read this excerpt describing Leviathan in detail, courtesy of the Book of Job, 41:1-41:34:

Can you fill his hide with harpoons or his head with fishing spears?

 If you lay a hand on him, you will remember the struggle and never do it again!

 

 I will not fail to speak of his limbs, his strength and his graceful form.

 Who can strip off his outer coat? Who would approach him with a bridle?

 Who dares open the doors of his mouth, ringed about with his fearsome teeth?

 His back has rows of shields tightly sealed together;

 each is so close to the next that no air can pass between.

 They are joined fast to one another; they cling together and cannot be parted.

 His snorting throws out flashes of light; his eyes are like the rays of dawn.

 Firebrands stream from his mouth; sparks of fire shoot out.

 Smoke pours from his nostrils as from a boiling pot over a fire of reeds.

 His breath sets coals ablaze, and flames dart from his mouth.

 Strength resides in his neck; dismay goes before him.

 The folds of his flesh are tightly joined; they are firm and immovable.

 His chest is hard as rock, hard as a lower millstone.

 When he rises up, the mighty are terrified; they retreat before his thrashing.

 The sword that reaches him has no effect, nor does the spear or the dart or the javelin.

 Iron he treats like straw and bronze like rotten wood.

 Arrows do not make him flee, slingstones are like chaff to him.

 A club seems to him but a piece of straw, he laughs at the rattling of the lance.

His undersides are jagged potsherds, leaving a trail in the mud like a threshing-sledge.

 He makes the depths churn like a boiling cauldron and stirs up the sea like a pot of ointment.

Behind him he leaves a glistening wake; one would think the deep had white hair.

Nothing on earth is his equal— a creature without fear.

He looks down on all that are haughty; he is king over all that are proud.

With that description, one would think the ancient author of that passage had just caught an extremely early sneak preview of Godzilla, King of the Monsters! As if that wasn’t enough, the Hebrew Bible said, in Psalm 74, that no less a personage than Yahweh himself was capable of destroying beings like Leviathan and Behemoth. This was given further apocalypse-ish connotations in Isaiah 27:1, where it’s written that the great Yahweh will only do this “at the end of time.” This suggests an important destiny for kaiju, which is a central theme in Matt’s Watchtower Universe, beginning with his novella The Kaiju and the Crime Fighter.

Also very interesting to today’s modern interpretation of the kaiju is how the Bible describes Yahweh insuring that Leviathan and Behemoth each harbor a tremendous instinctual desire to destroy the other, so that these titanic mysterious beasts -- apparently of the opposite gender and genetically compatible -- will never get together and produce offspring, which would quickly overrun the Earth and promptly knock humanity right off the top of the planet’s food chain (likely by becoming food in a rather literal sense). As we kaiju-fans are all quite aware, the penchant for these beasts to battle each other have become a main ingredient in the spectacle provided by the genre, and the tales comprising this anthology will bring us plenty of that action!

Of course, these ancient kaiju are by no means limited to the Bible, and go much further back in time than the days of Jesus. Also not unique to Leviathan and Behemoth, many of these other kaiju of old have reptilian characteristics, just as several of those in modern pop fiction do, particularly the earliest, e.g., the Rhedosaurus, Godzilla, Anguirus, Rodan, Varan, Gorgo and his mother Ogra, Reptilicus, etc. More ancient examples include such legendary ultra-gigantic dragons as Jormungand the Midgard Serpent from Norse mythology and Orochi the Eight-headed Dragon from Japan’s Shinto lore (and updated for a few Toho kaiju-films).

Of course, kaiju are extremely chimeric, and in both world mythology/folklore and modern action fiction, they have run the phenotypical gamut from mammalian, to icthyean, to avian, to insectoid/arachnoid, to humanoid. Mothra, in fact, is depicted as a divine manifestation of the Earth’s biosphere, as is Bagan, who has an Asian mythological precedent. The same with King Caesar, whose depiction in G-films by Toho was based on an actual hybrid leonine/reptilian protector of Okinawa. Many others are robotic or cybernetic in nature, some are actually enormous mecha with synthetic animal-like characteristics, and others are supernaturally animated mineral, like the walking stone samurai statue Majin from Daiei’s eponymous film series and the aptly named Rocky from the video game King of the Monsters.

And sometimes we have mythological deities who take the form of kaiju, such as Quetzalcoatl, the feathered serpent god of Aztec myth; Tiamat, the primordial Mesopotamian creator-goddess who could take the form of a gigantic dragon-like beast; and Garuda, the Asian deity who could take the form of a gigantic bird, and often served as a mount for the great Hindu god Vishnu.

Further muddying these pseudo-taxonomical waters are giant mysterious beasts, many of them gigantized versions of familiar animals, who are not as large as traditional kaiju and have correspondingly less destructive might at their beck and call, but which are nevertheless dangerous enough that we mere humans would still prefer not to run into any of them on some remote island or hidden valley. These creatures are appropriately referred to by Matt as mutants in his various kaiju tales, and they’ve also been referred to as megafauna or “false kaiju” by author Den Valdron. They have sometimes appeared alongside genuine kaiju, as they did in Matt’s novella Atomic Rex, and as the monstrous human-killing insectoid species Meganulon did alongside the titular kaiju in Rodan (1956).

Examples of such uber-deadly fauna would include King Kong, when he’s at one of his lesser statures (which can be as small as 10 meters to well over 30 meters); the Black Scorpion from the eponymous 1957 Mexican-American monster film; the giant ants seen in flicks like Them! (1954); the giant spiders from the movie Eight-Legged Freaks (2002); Gorgo himself (as opposed to his far larger, truly kaiju-sized mother Ogra); the various humanoid giants such as the cyclopses; the many cephalopod horrors like the kraken that appears in so many sources; the giant wasps and rats of The Food of the Gods (1976, and based on H.G. Wells’ classic novel); the monster lizards dubbed “slurposaurs” by Den Valdron, and seen in vintage B-movies such as King Dinosaur (1955), Journey to the Center of the Earth (1959), and The Lost World (1960), as well as popping up in films such as One Million Years B.C. (1966) and Amazon Women on the Moon (1987); and of course, your garden variety prehistoric survivors, seen in films such as The Valley of Gwangi (1969), the Jurassic Park franchise (beginning in 1992), and Matt’s 2015 novella Polar Yeti and Beasts of Prehistory, which finally gave the ancient mammalian and avian denizens of the Cenozoic Era their proper day, with a bunch of giant bugs thrown in for good and exciting measure.

Despite this variety of presence across many mediums, be they cinema, TV, comic books, or video games, kaiju have recently begun conquering another popular medium, which is prose literature. With the exception of Marc Cerasini’s notable series of Godzilla YA novels published by Random House during the late 1990s, kaiju in contemporary settings rarely appeared in prose until the past few years, after indie and digital publishing became a force to be reckoned with. Now that authors and small publishers had unprecedented rein to experiment, it was discovered that kaiju tales of the apocalyptic kind proved quite popular with readers.

What, exactly, is the appeal of such beasts and accompanying doomsday scenarios to the human psyche?

I’d wager that the preponderance of such beasts and prophesied Armageddon-like events which have existed within the collective human zeitgeist throughout our tumultuous history suggests deep-seated fears of both the power of nature and what the future might bring. Humans have long perceived themselves as entities of sin, and that we as a species are consequently due for a huge reckoning or “cleansing.” Slasher characters may punish young sinners for fornicating in the woods or indulging in recreational drugs, but kaiju take this metaphorical punishment to the nth degree, putting paid to our entire civilization for myriad perceived sins against the entire planet, e.g., atomic bomb tests, pollution, warfare. Kaiju appear to be archetypal manifestations of nature at its most powerful, directed against us in purposeful fashion, and in the form of fearsome personifications taken directly from our nightmares, albeit on a scale that vastly surpasses the capabilities of all other archetypal monster-forms. Also, our earliest ancestors were often at the mercy of huge beasts which no longer exist, including many species of enormous snakes and birds of prey, which is possibly why kaiju so often take these phenotypical forms, or a combination thereof.

It would seem these fears and self-deprecating beliefs exist in our collective mindset to this day, which has allowed kaiju apocalypse literature to thrive under the banner of indie authors. Modern phenomena that we today fear more than the gods, such as nuclear power, a creation of our own folly, have often not so coincidentally taken the place of supernatural forces as being the source of modern kaiju. It was a mere decade after the beginning of the Atomic Age that Leviathan and Behemoth’s ilk appeared to us in its modern form, and this further connected such creatures with the still greatly feared future apocalypse scenarios of the psychic gestalt.

This brings us to the work of Matt Dennion, one of the most prolific and celebrated authors of kaiju prose conquering the market today. That also brings us to the main kaiju subject of this anthology, the mighty guardian kaiju Gfantis. No friend of humanity but nevertheless a protector of the Earth against all territorial transgressors, including other kaiju, Gfantis was created years ago as the official kaiju mascot of the long-running G-Fan magazine published by Daikaiju Enterprises, brought to us all this time by kaiju-fan supreme J.D. Lees. When first created, Gfantis was “merely” a fearsome meme, a representation of all that is made great by the genre, and which the pages of G-Fan bring us with every issue for going on two and a half decades now. However, Matt was the one who infused Gfantis with true personality and purpose, as he guided the giant golden solar-powered dragon through a series of stories published in the above mag where the guardian kaiju met and battled other kaiju created and published by a disparate assemblage of esteemed authors within the growing genre, including some by Matt himself.

As you can doubtless tell by now, Matt is also a great fan of the crossover concept, and what you are reading now is the second of two volumes which collect the series of stories penned by Matt and originally serialized as stand-alone tales in G-Fan magazine. This particular volume will bring you Gfantis’ conflicts with a gigantic version of the legendary werewolf known as the Beast of Bray Road, two of the human-controlled kaiju-fighting avian weapons known as the ROCs from Matt’s novel Operation ROC, the giant humanoid doomsday weapon known as Kodoja, the nuclear charged carnosaur mutation Atomic Rex from Matt’s popular eponymous novel, and more!

Now, for a second volume in a row, you get a collection of Matt’s best from the pages of G-Fan, featuring all the kaiju battle action you could possibly ask for, with Gfantis once again proving he’s more than just a not-so-pretty face representing a genre, but a direct participant in the popular growing apocalypse now wreaking a fun degree of havoc on the digital book stores. For this, we can thank the creative mind and inexhaustible energy of Matt Dennion, J.D. Lees, and all of the other kaiju authors who generously allowed Matt to pit their grand creations against the Prince of the Monsters.

Chris Nigro

GFANTIS VS NEMESIS

Story by Matthew Dennion

Art by John Opal

 

 

Author’s Note: I would like to extend a very special thanks to Jeremy Robinson for allowing G-FAN to use Nemesis and her accompanying characters in this story. Nemesis is a kaiju featured in Jeremy’s novels Project Nemesis and the sequel Project Maigo. This story takes place between Jeremy’s two novels.

 

*******

 

Patience has never been one of my virtues. Call me crazy, but when you make an appointment to meet someone, both parties should arrive on time. In this case, the meeting place is the docks of Tokyo Bay, where we are supposed to meet Professor Hank Taupier.

I look down at my watch and sigh, as if that will make Taupier arrive any earlier. I can’t help but feel like this isn’t where I am supposed be. I feel like I’m wasting my time on a wild goose chase in Japan, when I should be searching the Atlantic Ocean for Nemesis. But when the President of the United States tells you to go and investigate something, you do it – no questions asked. Even if he’s sending you halfway across the world.

The sun is just starting to rise, and I divert my gaze from my watch to the boat Taupier has chartered to take us to our, as yet undisclosed destination. My partner and girlfriend, Ashley Collins, is standing on the boat. She’s talking to the captain and some of the crew members, trying to find out our destination.

As the sun rises over the sea behind her, the first rays of the morning outline her figure. I wonder how, by just standing there in her field clothes, she manages to create a scene that looks like it should be on the cover of a magazine. I can’t really hear what she’s saying to the men on the boat, but they are enthralled by her every word. They keep their eyes fixed on her, and I can’t blame them. Collins is a strikingly beautiful woman by any standard, but I would imagine that a tall red head is a particularly rare commodity in Japan. She finishes talking with them, smiles at the crew, and then walks toward me. One of the crew says something in Japanese and the rest of them laugh. I’m sure the comment was directed at Collins, and I’m also sure that if I understood Japanese, I’d be jumping on the boat right now and handing out haymakers. Of course, if Collins spoke Japanese, she’d probably be onboard herself, kicking more sailor butt than I ever could. I shake my head to clear my thoughts, and I catch myself staring at her as she’s walking toward me. I try not to look like a gawking schoolboy and check my watch again.

Collins walks up to me and grabs my hand to look at my watch also. She looks up, then fills me in on her conversation with the crew.

“We’re heading to a series of islands known as the Ogasawara Islands. You’ll love this next part. The sailors call one of the islands ‘Monster Island,’ because back in 2005, the first actual footage of a giant squid was filmed off the shore of the island.”

A sarcastic smile creeps onto my face. “A giant squid. Really? That’s what used to qualify as a monster?” I shake my head. “I guess our perceptions have changed regarding a lot things since Nemesis.”

Nemesis is the monster that changed the world forever, in the span of a few short days. I take a moment to recall the events of the past few months. I work for a branch of the federal government known as Fusion Center–P. The ‘P’ stands for Paranormal. My team and I would investigate everything from UFOs to Lizard Men. I held the position for several years, and for the most part it was an easy job, because we never found anything. At all. All I had to do was put up with X-Files-related puns from the other agents at Homeland who tracked drug lords and terrorists.

Until one day, when I was called to check out a Bigfoot sighting. My investigation was aided by the local sheriff: Collins. The two of us stumbled onto an off-the-books project by a large corporation. They had found the body of a dead kaiju and had tried to replicate it, by bonding it with the DNA of a deceased young girl. I suppose in the eyes of the corporation, the project was a success. The girl’s DNA merged with the monster’s. The girl escaped from the compound that was holding her, and she began to grow and change into a monster at an alarming rate. Collins and I tracked the creature, and we tried to stop its rampage across New England, as it destroyed anything in its path and devoured anyone it came across.

The monster eventually grew to a size of 300 feet tall. She had become a massive bipedal thing with an armored carapace covering her body. Her arms and feet had mutated into massive claws, while a tail protruded from her back, ending in a spiked trident. As if her sheer physical presence wasn’t destructive enough, at various points on her body are numerous fluid-filled, orange membranes. Now, if every Godzilla movie ever made has taught us anything, it is that you hit a monster with as much firepower as you can in an attempt to turn it away. In this instance, that was a big mistake. Each of those orange membranes is filled with a flammable liquid that explodes on contact with air. We found that out the hard way when the membranes were ruptured by heavy cannon fire. While the explosions did little to harm the creature, they caused massive damage to the surrounding areas.

We called the monster Nemesis, after the goddess of vengeance. The creature seems to have some innate sense of when a great wrong is committed and an overwhelming compulsion to exact vengeance on the perpetrator of the misdeed. The little girl, who’s part of the monster, had a very specific vengeance to carry out, which led her to Boston. To save the city, I helped Nemesis carry out her vengeance. God help me, I can still see that man as Nemesis shed her carapace, revealing wings that would let her focus the very power of the sun on her victim.

“Jon. He’s here.”

Collins’s voice snaps me out of my memories to see a conservatively-dressed short man wearing round, decidedly nerdy glasses, walking up to us. He bows and then extends his hand as he introduces himself.

“Agents Ashley Collins and Jon Hudson, I presume? I am Professor Hank Taupier. Thank you for responding to my request for assistance in investigating this phenomenon. In the wake of the Nemesis tragedy, it seems you two are the world’s foremost experts in daikaiju.”

I grab his hand and shake it firmly. Since I don’t really have time to screw around with this guy, I cut to the chase. “Look professor, we appreciate your concern over a reported sighting of a kajiu. But I have to be honest; since Nemesis, we’ve been getting reports of all sorts of crazy things. Most of them turn out to be people’s imaginations running away with them. It’s almost like Nemesis created a worldwide mass delusion since she appeared. Everyone’s minds are seeing monsters where there aren’t any, like kids, but instead of Boogeymen under the bed, it’s kaiju in the ocean. If there’s even the slightest chance that whatever you saw could actually be something mundane, please let us know now.”

Taupier calmly readjusts his glasses. “I assure you, Agent Hudson, that what I saw was no trick of the mind. It was real, and it is as deadly a threat to the human race as Nemesis herself. I can appreciate how busy you are, so please let us enter the boat, and I will give the details of my experience as we travel to the island.”

After the ship clears the harbor and enters the open ocean, Taupier sits down at a table with us. He almost falls over as the ship rocks underneath him. I would laugh if my own stomach wasn’t doing cartwheels inside of me. This is why I hate traveling by boat. Give me a helicopter any day of the week over a tin can on the water.

Taupier takes a deep breath and then relates his story. “Several weeks ago, the editor of one those tabloid magazines was sent to investigate the cause behind the explosion of an experimental solar plant. I went with him. When we were flying over the site, we found a massive creature wandering through the debris. The beast’s frame resembled a dinosaur, except it was far larger than any dinosaur in the fossil record. I estimated it to be at least 55 meters long. It had yellowish scales, spikes on its head and back and a massive crescent-moon-shaped horn at the top of its head. While it initially walked on four legs, when it saw our plane, it stood up on two legs and began to follow us. When we flew back out over the sea, it waded into the water and disappeared.

“Having been the first to see the creature, I named him Gigantosaurus fantasticus. However, when the editor ran the story in his tabloid, he shortened the name to Gfantis, and that name seems to have stuck with most people.”

I stare at the guy for a minute, and then calmly remove the red beanie cap from my head and run my hand across my cleanly shaven dome. “You have us out here chasing a tabloid monster?”

Taupier sighs in frustration. “The fact the monster was first reported in a tabloid is irrelevant. It’s a real creature, and the US government needs to be aware of it. How were your claims met when you first reported Nemesis to your superiors? Did everyone run out to help you fight the giant monster, or were you met with skepticism at best?”

I nod in reply. “Fair enough. We’ll keep an open mind about ‘Gfantis.’”

Collins interjects. “So why are we going to investigate the Ogasawara Islands? What makes you think Gfantis will be there?”

Taupier looks her dead in the eyes. “Two reasons. First, I suspect Gfantis feeds off energy, hence his appearance at the solar plant. The Ogasawara Islands are home to an active volcano, so my theory is that Gfantis might use a place such as this as both a nest and a readily available food source. Second, three days ago a fishing vessel reported seeing a golden dragon swimming off the coastline of those islands.”

I shrug my shoulders. “Okay. Let’s go see if there’s a second giant monster roaming the planet. Hooray!”

Collins slaps me on the back of my head, and I decide that it’s probably in my best interest to remain silent until we reach ‘Monster Island.’

Deep in the waters of the Pacific Ocean, Nemesis was slowly closing in on a massive albino sperm whale. Moving through the water had become much easier since her wings had receded into her body and her sleek armored carapace had grown back.

While she had spent most of her young life in the Atlantic Ocean, if she wanted to continue to eat, then she needed to follow the whales around the tip of South America and into the Pacific Ocean. In addition to the lone whale, Nemesis could sense that numerous other whales, as well as giant squid, were in the area. The whales followed the squid, and Nemesis followed the whales. It was a pattern as simple as nature itself. Creatures went to where their food source took them.

As she was closing in on the whale, she felt a shockwave travel through the water. Her mind and body quickly processed the information and determined that the shockwave was a volcano preparing to erupt. This fact meant nothing to Nemesis. Even an erupting volcano did not present a threat to her.

She continued her pursuit of the whale, when suddenly her body went rigid as it was overcome by a new sensation. Her mind flooded with images of the ‘light man.’ She could sense that the man who had helped carry out her vengeance was in terrible danger. In her mind, she could see the man near the volcano as it erupted. She could also sense another dangerous presence near him.

Nemesis did not understand what these feelings meant and she did not know from where they had come, but just as she felt the need to destroy the dark man who had wronged her in her previous incarnation, she felt the need to protect the light man. He had aided her in exacting her vengeance. Nemesis turned away from the whale, and began swimming toward the Ogasawara Islands.

When we reach the island, there’s no dock on the uninhabited strip of land, which is roughly 10 miles wide and 25 miles long. So it’s a quick a ride in a dinghy from the larger ship to the island’s northern shore. As we disembark from the ship, I make a quick joke to Collins about taking her to an island paradise. She smiles briefly, but she knows that we’re working, and she’s getting her game face on, just in case we do find anything.

When we reach the shoreline, the volcano at the island’s center dominates the horizon. From the beach, you would think that half of the island is volcano. As we’re walking toward the center of the island, I feel overwhelmed by the heat. Granted, we’re in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, only a few degrees off from the equator, but this seems excessive.

Suddenly, Collins stops right in front of me. She sniffs the air and crinkles her nose as she turns to me. “Is that sulfur?”

The smell of rotten eggs quickly assaults my nostrils as well. I’m about to confirm her assertion when the ground begins to shake beneath us. A cold shiver runs down my spine. The thought that Gfantis might be real and is heading toward us, crosses my mind.

The fear of Gfantis is put to rest when an equally terrifying thought is expressed by Taupier, instead. “Earthquake!” he yells. “We need to get off this island! This kind of localized seismic activity can mean only that the volcano is going to erupt.”

We start running through the jungle, back to the dinghy, when I swear I can hear a familiar roar from the far side of the island.

Nemesis waded ashore onto the southern tip of the island, as the volcano let loose another shockwave, indicating that it was preparing to erupt. Sensing that the light man was still on the island, she roared defiantly at the towering volcano, challenging the object that would endanger the him. The volcano itself made no reply to Nemesis’s threat, but deep within the bowels of the volcano, something did hear Nemesis’s challenge.

Gfantis’s eyes snapped open, as the roar woke him from his slumber. To a creature that could wade through magma as if it were water, the erupting of a volcano was of no consequence, but an intruder into his territory was something Gfantis could not tolerate. The kaiju shook his body, loosening his massive muscles. He walked to the cave wall of his lair and lifting his massive claws, the giant began tunneling through the mountain itself.

Birds took to the sky in front of Nemesis as she approached the volcano in the center of the island. When she reached the base of the formation, she stopped. She could sense something, but she was unsure of exactly what it was. She could feel vibrations coming from the cliff wall in front of her, but these vibrations were steady, unlike those generated by the pressure building in the volcano. Nemesis watched in confusion as pieces of the cliff wall exploded into the air. A massive saurian head covered in golden scales broke through the side of the mountain.

Gfantis crawled out of the side of the volcano, walking on all four legs. He glared at the creature that had dared to enter his territory. He then bent his head down for a moment and unleashed a deafening roar at Nemesis.

Nemesis stood staring at the golden monster. While she was larger than the creature, it was nearly as big as she was. In her short existence, she had never faced anything like this creature. This beast represented a legitimate challenge to her. Her thoughts quickly shifted to the light man. She could sense that he was still in the area and that the golden monster was a threat to him, as well. Nemesis’s mind focused on the sole task of destroying this creature and protecting the light man. She roared at Gfantis, and then she charged at the beast.

Gfantis quickly gauged that Nemesis was larger and probably physically stronger than he was. As such, he opted to not stand up and grapple with the invader. Instead, he ran toward Nemesis on four legs, keeping his body close the ground. When he was within reach, the intruder swung her long claw at him. The reptilian kaiju ducked under the blow, stepped forward and closed his jaws around Nemesis’s thigh.

Nemesis roared in pain, as Gfantis’s teeth penetrated her thick armor and sank into the soft tissue beneath it. She shook her body from side to side, however the action only caused Gfantis to tighten his grip. Lifting her claw above her head she brought the massive weapon crashing down into Gfantis’s back. His entire body slammed into the ground from the force of the blow.

Gfantis struggled to maintain his grip on her leg as a second and a third blows came crashing down onto him. When the fifth blow landed, his head was wrenched free from the leg. Another blow was quickly delivered to his head, driving it into ground.

The larger kaiju looked down on her tenacious opponent, as the golden dragon shook his head, trying to shrug off the blows she inflicted on it. When the creature attempted to lift his body from the ground, Nemesis drew back her leg and delivered a vicious kick to the golden dragon’s midsection, which sent the monster soaring through the air.

Several hundred feet from where he was launched, Gfantis came crashing back to earth. Trees were both flattened and sent flying into the air, as his body skidded through the jungle. Once he stopped sliding, Gfantis rolled off his back and returned to his quadruped stance. He saw the massive form of the intruder charging him at a speed that seemed impossible, given the beast’s size. Gfantis turned his gaze downward and began digging into the ground at a fantastic pace.

Just as Nemesis was upon him, Gfantis had completely burrowed into the ground. Nemesis shifted her head from side to side, searching for the creature, when she suddenly felt a sharp pain at the base of her tail. She turned to see the golden creature attacking her from behind. The lower portion of his body, including his back legs and tail, remained underground, but his torso, arms and head were above ground. His teeth had stabbed into the base of Nemesis’s tail and his fore-claws were tearing into the backs of her legs.

Nemesis roared in pain as the creature began to pull backward on her legs and tail, causing her to come crashing down onto her back. She was the larger of the two creatures, but Gfantis was by far the quicker and more agile beast. Nemesis had no sooner realized that she was on her back than Gfantis had leapt onto her chest. Gfantis’s claws raked Nemesis’s face, and then he clamped his powerful jaws around her neck.

The armored carapace that encased Nemesis’s body made a sickening crack as Gfantis’s fangs penetrated it and sank into the jugular below. Nemesis struggled to shake Gfantis loose, but with her own blood pouring down her throat and choking her, she was quickly losing consciousness. In an act of desperation, she lifted her tail into the air and brought the trident shaped horns on the tip of it down on Gfantis, slicing through the creature’s leg and impaling it on the spiked appendage.

Gfantis howled in pain as Nemesis swatted him off her chest. He tried to put distance between himself and the larger intruder, but with one of his hind legs impaled on Nemesis’s trident, all he could do was limp from side to side as the mighty tail held him place.

Nemesis spun around, facing the smaller monster, and then she yanked her tail from his body. Gfantis roared once more as blood came gushing out of the wound, covering the tree tops below him in a crimson rain. His roars of pain were drowned out by the earth-shattering sound of the top of the volcano exploding. Nemesis forgot about her opponent for a moment and looked up the mountain. A pillar of ash was flying into the air, covering the northern side of the island in darkness. Simultaneously, molten lava slowly poured out of every crevice on the mountain and into the jungle below it.

I lift Collins out of the dinghy and back onto the charter boat, just as the top of the volcano erupts. The sound is deafening. I’m the last man in the dinghy, and I can see the captain screaming at me. I can’t hear a word he’s saying, but the message is clearly for me to climb aboard ASAP. I throw myself onto the deck. The captain then immediately throttles the boat to full speed, in an attempt to put as much distance between us and the mountain of doom as possible. The boat is faster than I would have thought. We seem to be making good time getting away from island. The problem is that the projecting cloud of devastation is coming directly at us. If the ash hits our boat, not only will it suffocate the engines, leaving the ship dead in the water, but the burning hot chunks of rock mixed in with it will roast us where we stand.

Once the ringing in our ears subsides to the point where we can sort of hear each other again, the captain shouts in Japanese. Thankfully, we have Taupier to translate. “He says we can’t out-run the ash cloud.”

I take a moment and look over our very limited options. A rough plan quickly comes together in my mind. It isn’t much, but it’s better than standing on the boat and waiting to be burned to death by smoldering death falling from the sky.

I shout to Collins and Taupier. “I have an idea, but it’s a longshot.” Neither looks convinced, but they wait hear it. “First, get one of the crew members to bring the dinghy aboard. The other two crew members need to cut up any thick rope they can find. We need one piece for each of us that’s at least 20 feet long. Tell the captain to get the emergency GPS locator and keep it with him. We’re gonna need it.”

Collins nods. “Okay. What can we do?”

I point to several small buckets on the deck, typically used for holding fishing bait. “We need to fill those buckets with water and bring them next to the dinghy, along with every fire extinguisher onboard.” Collins doesn’t question my plan, she just grabs the buckets and starts filling them with water, while I track down the fire extinguishers.

Taupier translates the instructions for the crew, who carry out their orders. Once the rope is cut and the dinghy is onboard, I have everyone tie one end of their rope around their ankles and the other end to the interior of the dinghy.

I then shout to Taupier and Collins. “Now everyone grab the dinghy and flip it over.” When the three of us reach down and start to flip the dinghy, the crew follows suit without the need for Taupier to translate. Once the dinghy is upside down, I pick up a bucket of water and pour it over the bottom of the dinghy. Once more, everyone else follows my lead. Soon the bottom of the dinghy is soaking wet. After all of the water has been poured onto the dinghy, I take one of the fire extinguishers and hand the other one I found to Collins. We empty them on the bottom of the dinghy as well. The smell of the fumes from the extinguishers burns our eyes and nose, but it burns a hell of a lot less than the hot ash and rock that will be falling on us in a few minutes. I toss the fire extinguisher aside and explain the last part of my shoddy plan to Collins and Taupier.

“Translate for me,” I ask the man. “We’re going to pick up the dinghy and jump into the water with it. Make sure they understand that we need to keep the dinghy upside down when we put it into the water. We’ll need to hold onto the dinghy and tread water for a few minutes. And for God’s sake, make sure that the captain has the GPS locator!”

Taupier quickly translates, and then as one we pick up the upside down dinghy and jump into the water as a team. Once we settle the dinghy on the water, I go over the last part of my ridiculous plan with everyone.

Gfantis once more attempted to limp away from the towering form of Nemesis, but his retreat was in vain. Their battle had carried them back to the beach. Gfantis was trying to reach the ocean, but Nemesis was on the injured monster before he could crawl into the water. As Nemesis reached down, Gfantis brought his whip-like tail snapping across her face. Were it not for the protective armor encasing her body, the tail would have created a deep and painful gash, but in this instance, it simply smacked ineffectively across her thickly plated brow.

Nemesis swung her arm upward, tearing a massive wound into Gfantis’s ribs. He was thrown onto his side. He attempted to roar defiantly at her, but the sound was cut short when she wrapped one of her massive claws around the dragon’s neck. Nemesis lifted the smaller monster off the ground and held its limp body at eye level. She lifted her other claw, preparing to swipe it across Gfantis’s body, gutting the creature and ending the battle.

But the crescent horn atop Gfantis’s head began to glow.

Before Nemesis could react, a searing beam of white light shot out of the horn and burned through the front of her shoulder. Then it exploded out of her back. Nemesis stumbled backwards and dropped Gfantis to the ground.

Gfantis regained his footing and then unleashed a second blast of his crescent horn in conjunction with opening his mouth. A blast ray of terrible heat shot out of his throat at her. Gfantis focused his attack on Nemesis’s face, keeping her off balance and disoriented. Nemesis stumbled backwards and once more fell onto her back.

With Nemesis down, Gfantis attacked. He placed his body on Nemesis’s tail, pinning the dangerous appendage to the ground. He then bit down hard onto Nemesis’s right foot while simultaneously using his claws to tear at her calf. Gfantis was determined to tear Nemesis’s foot from her body, crippling the beast and turning her massive size into a disadvantage.

Nemesis forced her body into an upright position and then backhanded Gfantis off her leg. Gfantis went skidding along the beach, but managed to maintain his footing this time. Nemesis stood up and then attempted to walk, only to fall onto her side. She lifted herself and again attempted to walk toward Gfantis, only to feel her injured ankle giving out underneath her once more.

Gfantis stood watching her. While his own injuries likewise hampered his ability to maneuver, he was still more than capable of attacking Nemesis. The crescent horn atop his head began to glow, and again a beam of white hot light pierced Nemesis’s chest, narrowly missing one of the glowing orange membranes. The beam of light exited through her back.

Nemesis roared in pain and rage! She was determined to destroy this creature. She shifted her skin within her armor, causing the shell to begin to slide away from her body. Within moments, she had shed her armored exterior. Nemesis arched her back, causing her massive wings to unfold behind her. Her body was much lighter now, and her injured ankle was able to support her weight without issue.

Gfantis fired another of his crescent beams at her and without her armor to protect her body, the blast caused even more damage than it had previously. She staggered backward and then turned, so her wings were catching the full effects of the sun, which was slowly fading behind a cloud of ash. Nemesis’s body began to glow. As the light surrounded her, she looked almost like an angelic creature bathed in the luminance of heaven itself. When her wings had managed to catch the sun at the correct angle, she turned toward Gfantis, and the light that had been creating an aura around her, started to cover Gfantis.

The ocean water boiled and the sand on the beach around the golden creature turned glass. The seaweed that had washed up on shore caught fire. It was as if hell itself had been unleashed on ‘Monster Island,’ and Gfantis was at the heart of it.

We’re holding onto the capsized dinghy as the larger boat drifts away from us. Despite it being the middle the day, the ash has caused the sky to look as though it’s the middle of the night. I look up to see the ash falling toward us. Now it’s time for the part of my plan that relies entirely on hope. We did all that we could to fireproof the underside of the dinghy so that hopefully the falling ash and rock won’t cause it to burst into flames. When the cloud hits the water, the surface of the ocean will be boiling hot, hence the ropes tied to our legs and the dinghy.

We’re all going to swim as deep as we can in hopes of avoiding the heat. The ropes will keep the dinghy from floating away from us while we’re submerged. One of the many downsides of this plan, is that if the dinghy catches fire, we’ll be tied to a bonfire in the middle of the ocean. I’m about to give the sign for everyone to dive, but first I turn to Collins in case this is the last chance I get to express how I feel about her. I’m about to speak when she pulls me close to her and kisses me. God in heaven, if I am about to die, there are certainly worse ways to go.

Collins releases me and we both take a deep breath. I lift my hand above my head and then bring it down, giving everyone the signal to dive. We swim as deep as we can, and then I turn to look back up at the surface of the water. All I can see is pitch black. I literally can’t see my hand in front of my face. The complete darkness is not a bad thing. At least it gives me some hope that the dinghy didn’t catch fire. If I saw a bright orange flame above my head, we’d literally be sunk. I can feel the water heating up around us. It’s getting hotter, but at this depth it feels like lying in a Jacuzzi. It almost feels kind of nice.

What I hear is the scary part. The water on the surface is turning into steam as the ash and small flecks of burning, liquid rock hit it. The transition of ocean water from liquid to steam is making a terrible hissing noise. Sound travels much better underwater than it does on land. As I float in the darkness, it sounds like I’m surrounded by a thousand angry snakes.

Finally, the water around me cools, but my lungs feel like they’re about to burst. I wait as long as I can, and then I swim to the surface. My head breaks the water to see that the dinghy is still intact. Within seconds, Collins, Taupier and the rest of the crew come to the surface as well. We work quickly to flip the dinghy right-side up, and then we each climb into it. Once we’re all onboard, we can see that the larger ship we abandoned was turned into a blazing inferno from the rain of searing debris that fell onto it. The captain says something in Japanese while looking at the ship, and then he switches on the emergency GPS locator. With most of the ash in the water, the sun starts to break through the darkness and light up the ocean around us.

Collins hugs me and gives me a quick kiss. “Wasn’t such a bad plan after all.”

I smile. “Thanks. But listen… back on the island I thought I heard…”

She holds up her hand. “I know. I thought I heard it, too. Once we get picked up and the ash clears from the sky, we’ll get a helicopter and fly over, to see if ‘Monster Island’ lives up to its name.”

Nemesis continued to focus her solar beam onto Gfantis, but instead of being consumed by the attack, the golden creature seemed to be getting stronger.

Gfantis’s body was solar powered. He took his energy directly from the sun. Nemesis’s attack was infusing him with a power that he had never felt before. His wounds healed almost instantly. He stood on two legs, raising his body to its full height. Then he unleashed a furious roar at Nemesis.

Nemesis cut off her beam and answered in kind.

The magma from the volcano was flowing down onto the beach, as the two monsters plodded toward each other. Gfantis struck first. His swiping claws dug deeply into Nemesis’s now exposed hide. She shrieked in pain and then raked her massive claw across Gfantis’s face.

The two monsters continued to exchange blows as the magma flowed around their feet, hit the ocean water and solidified in a billowing cloud of steam. The hardened magma created a natural wall, causing the still flowing magma behind it to pool around the battling monsters. The magma rose to the point of reaching Nemesis’s knee.

After delivering a back hand swat, Nemesis, knowing she was more vulnerable, did the unthinkable. With squinted eyes that said Gfantis was in trouble, she plunged her claws into her own chest, rupturing two of her bright orange membranes. When she withdrew the giant talons, the liquid came into contact with the air and exploded with a force equivalent to the volcano itself. Gfantis, wrapped in a blistering wash of light, was lifted off the ground and flung out to sea, stunned and scorched, but cooled by the deep water. Nemesis took stock of the island. The light man was gone. Safe. And with the light man no longer in danger, there was no reason to battle the other creature. Nemesis spun her massive body around, entered the ocean and swam out to sea.

Minutes later, Gfantis waded ashore and surveyed his island. He was unable to find Nemesis anywhere, concluding that the other beast had either retreated or been destroyed in the explosion. Gfantis roared triumphantly and then lumbered back into his volcano.

It took the Japanese Coast Guard only ten hours to find us after the volcano had erupted. Overall, not a bad response time, considering they had to wait until the all of the ash had cleared from the air. After we reached land, got looked over by the doctors, and had a chance to eat and change our clothes, I called in a few favors to get us a helicopter flight back to the island, for observation.

As we’re flying over the island, all we can see is devastation, but that’s exactly what you would expect after a volcanic eruption. The disappointment must show on my face, because Collins grabs my hand.

“I thought I heard her, too, but volcanoes make all kinds of strange sounds before erupting. With nothing but Nemesis on our minds, it’s no wonder that when we heard the volcano, we associated it with the monster.”

I want to tell Collins that it was more than just hearing Nemesis. It’s almost like I could feel her in the area, and more and more, I find myself thinking of her as a little girl who was wronged, rather than as a malevolent monster.

I can’t explain the feeling, and honestly, it kind of creeps me out. I’m trying to think of the words to express what I experienced when an alert pops up on my phone. I look at it quizzically and then turn to Collins.

“Looks like our next case just came in. A cat-woman on the Ute reservation.”

“Sounds like a date,” Collins says, while I get the pilot’s attention.

“Take us back to the mainland,” I say. “We have a plane to catch. Duty calls.”

 

 

Gfantis, The Duke, Zargatron: POWER STRUGGLE

Story by Matthew Dennion

Art by Alan OW Barnes

 

Author’s Note: This instalment of our Gfantis vs “Guest Monster” Series features both the Duke and Zargatron from Timothy Price’s novel Big In Japan. I would like to extend a very special thank you to Tim for letting G-FAN use his monsters and their associated characters, as well as to tell our readers to look out for the next installment of the Big In Japan series, Big in Japan POWER! This Gfantis story takes place in between chapter XV (15) and XVI (16) of Big In Japan!

 

Japan: The woman howled in agony and struggled in vain against the chains that kept her hands suspended above her head, as the witch dug the knife deeper into her thigh. The witch smiled and then twisted the knife to intensify the woman’s suffering. The woman was an agent of the Earth Intelligence Organization, or E.I.O., and as such she would not divulge information easily, especially when confronted by evil incarnate in the form of Oko Rikoku!

For centuries, the Yokai witch had used various methods in her attempts to slaughter as many humans as she could in her insane quest for world domination. Her methods varied from political upheaval to the unleashing of daikaiju on the various cities of the world.

The witch laughed as she slowly pulled the knife out of the agent’s leg. She mocked the agent in English tainted by a heavy Japanese accent. “You are a credit to your people agent Vinehouse, but you will break. Jack thinks so highly of his silly agents. He sends them around the world pretending to be musicians.” Oko walked around the agent and the woman spit a mouthful of blood at her. The witch deftly stepped aside of the projectile, then moved behind the agent and removed a syringe from her tray of interrogation tools. “Well, if pain will not break your will, perhaps pleasure will!”

Oko jammed the syringe into the agent’s neck and whispered into her ear. “As you begin to lose control of your senses, know that a dose of this magnitude will kill you, but not before it compels you to give me the information that I desire.” She circled the agent and continued to throw insults at her. “It seems that Jack will have to make up another story about one of his musicians dying from a drug overdose!” Oko watched as the agent’s body twisted and contorted in pain, the drug slowly destroying her mind and body. Once the agent had lost the ability to fight against the effects of the drug, Oko grabbed her by the jaw. “Now, I know it is your responsibility to track the monster. Tell me where can I find Gfantis?”

The agents head rolled from side to side as she uttered the last words of her life: “The Great Victoria desert.”

The woman’s body went limp as Oko pumped her hand in triumph. “Of course the beast would be in the desert. It is an excellent place for him to recharge his magnificent body.”

Oko left her interrogation room and descended a set of stairs to the massive underground facility buried beneath her house. In the hangar beneath the house lay the gargantuan form of the ancient daikaiju Zargatron. The beast had been in her service since her family had first begun its war against humanity. The monster’s body had a powerfully built bipedal form, with four arms sprouting from its torso and demonic wings protruding from its back. Zargatron had the face of a bull with the jaws of a lion.

The monster was still badly injured, as it had nearly been destroyed in a recent battle with Jack’s newest recruits to the E.I.O. and rouge daikaiju. Still, Zargatron’s near death was worth the price, considering the prize Oko now possessed. The largest supply of Organic Thorium on Earth had been taken from E.I.O Headquarters and was now hers. The compound was one of the most powerful energy sources on the planet. Even now it was powering an army of massive robots that were replacing the damaged parts of Zargatron’s body with new mechanized upgrades infused with the compound itself. Soon to be reborn as a cyborg, he would possess far more power than he had as a purely organic creature.

There was only one power source on the planet rivaling the store of Organic Thorium that Oko controlled: Gfantis. His solar powered body converted sunlight into kinetic energy at a level greater than the output of a hundred nuclear power plants. With both the Organic Thorium and Gfantis’ corpse, Oko would control the two greatest power sources on Earth, and humanity would be forced to bow to her will.

As the robots finished the last of the upgrades on Zargatron, she spoke to the beast. “Go, my faithful Zargatron. Fly to the Great Victoria Desert in Australia. There you will find Gfantis. Slay the creature and bring his corpse back to me!”

Zaragton’s eyes shot open as the witch used her magic to teleport the daikaiju to the outskirts of the Australian coast. Zargatron turned his head in the direction of the continent, roared, and then lifted off, soaring over the Land Down Under at supersonic speed.

 

Fuji: A hangar hidden on the slope of the mountain opened as the director of E.I.O, Sir Jonathan Winston (a.k.a. Sir Jack), lead scientist Dr. Takarada, and the other members of the E.I.O stared with pride at their newest weapon: a giant robot created by the Americans. In accordance with their heritage, the Americans had given the robot a cowboy themed appearance, with a massive cowboy hat on its head and what looked like an old fashioned bandolier running across its chest. Even the robot’s weapons were cowboy themed: two photon cannons shaped like twin six shooters. It was also equipped with an eye monocle that, to Sir Jack, resembled an eye patch. The monocle served as the cannon for the robot’s most powerful weapon, an Organic Thorium heat ray. The Americans had extended the cowboy theme to the extreme by giving the machine the call sign of “the Duke.”

Covering their ears and planting their feet firmly on the ground, Sir Jack and the other E.I.O members were assaulted by the sounds and slipstream created by the Duke as it rocketed into the sky. The cybernetic humanoid known only as SCOTT stood erect in a tube at the center of the Duke’s control station. Surrounding SCOTT were the members of the newly formed megaband Vinyl Crush, each in suspended animation in a cubicle, allowing SCOTT to run the Duke’s systems through their central nervous systems without their conscious minds interfering with the process. Their abilities were maximized while, at the same time, human traits such as fear and doubt were eliminated.

Most of the world only knew Vinyl Crush as a hot new band that had recently burst onto the scene, unaware that while the band’s front man Nathan and guitarist Tommy came from the Behind the Music background of garage band to stardom, the other members of the group were a top level secret agent and twin aliens with vast psychokinetic powers.

SCOTT directed his attention to the sleeping form of Tommy. Tommy was the one member of the E.I.O that would talk to SCOTT as if he was a living person. They had engaged in many conversations both related to the E.I.O and random topics unrelated to their training. Prior to the mission, Tommy had asked why it was it that rock stars had been chosen to be the pilots whose brains were connected to the walking armada that was the Duke. SCOTT explained that musicians were most suited to operate a mech because their brains are hardwired to think quickly, and musical talent helps develop the mind’s ability to take multiple variables and bring them together into a cohesive whole. Furthermore, the fine motor skills of a musician are superior to any athlete in the world.

SCOTT had calculated that the brainwaves of Vinyl Crush would achieve a high rate of efficiency in operating the Duke.

The connection between himself, Vinyl Crush, and the Duke complete, SCOTT’s thoughts reverted to the task at hand. The objective for the day was to test the Duke’s ability to maneuver and attack at high speeds. SCOTT turned his head to the left and the Duke flew toward the Pacific Ocean.

 

Australia: A blazing sun beat down on the vast Great Victoria Desert. The heat created a hot wind that blew across the barren wasteland and caused dust devils to form. Two of the sand filled vortexes collided and merged into a single massive whirlwind reaching nearly twenty feet in height. It twisted across the desert until a shockwave ripped through the ground, causing the vortex to lose its footing and dissipate. The first shockwave was followed by a second one that sent hundreds of rodents scurrying into burrows beneath the desert floor.

A curious rabbit that had darted into the earth turned around to face the opening of his den. Its eyes went wide when it saw a massive golden foot blocking out the sky. The rabbit attempted to dash out of its den, but the foot was far too large for the small creature to outrun, and it was quickly crushed.

Gfantis walked across the desert, unaware of his effect on the habitat. The monster’s only concern was to follow the sun, allowing his solar powered body to charge to its full potential. Gfantis kept his head tilted skyward, his gaze directed through the cloudless sky and on his power source. The beast’s keen eyes saw a silhouette appear on the horizon. The monster grunted in disgust at the approaching shadow. On several occasions, humans had used their pathetic flying machines to attack him. While the humans’ machines were unable to inflict any real damage on Gfantis, he did find their efforts to be a minor annoyance.

The object emitted a scream that sounded both metallic and organic at the same time. Gfantis altered his vision to bring the object into focus, a massive winged demon with four arms and armor coating most of its body. Zargatron screeched once again and then dived toward Gfantis.

 

Japanese Coast: The Duke completed a ninety degree turn and then went into a head first freefall toward the ocean. Both SCOTT and the members of Vinyl Crush were unaffected by the G-forces generated by such a maneuver. SCOTT aimed the Duke’s twin photon cannons at two derelict ships that the E.I.O. had towed out to sea to serve as targets. The robot fired a photon burst from each of its cannons. The ships exploded the moment that the photon bursts came into contact with them. Data streamed into SCOTT’S head and he verified his suspicions that the combined talents of Vinyl Crush would allow the Duke to operate at a level of efficiency far greater than any of the E.I.O’s previous robots.

SCOTT’s calculations were interrupted by the voice of the director of the E.I.O. “SCOTT, this is Sir Jack. Your training session has now been upgraded to an official mission. We have reports that Zargatron has appeared in the Great Victoria Desert.” Sir Jack was silent for a moment. He took a deep breath and then continued with his briefing. “SCOTT, we also have intelligence that puts Gfantis in the area as well. If Oko is able to gain control of Gfantis, or even of his corpse, between that and the store of Organic Throium she stole, that witch will possess more raw power than we could ever hope to overcome. It is imperative that you do not let Zargatron leave the area with Gfantis. Stop Zargatron from gaining control of Gfantis by any means necessary! Even if that means reducing Gfantis to atoms.”

SCOTT replied with a simple, “Yes my boss.” He then turned the Duke toward the south. The robot streaked through the sky, picking up speed and creating a sonic boom that ripped through the atmosphere.

 

Australia: Zargatron crashed into Gfantis with the force of an aircraft carrier dropping from thousands of feet in the air. Zargatron’s impact drove Gfantis into ground, creating an impact crater as long as Gfantis’s body and hundreds of feet in depth. Zargatron screeched as he lifted all four of his claws into the air, then brought them down in an unrelenting barrage across Gfantis’ head and neck.

Despite being repeatedly struck by fists with the force of a Sherman tank behind them, Gfantis forced his head to turn so that he was facing his attacker. Opening his jaws, the Prince of the Monsters unleashed his oral heat beam directly into Zargatron’s chest. The Organic Thorium enriched armor encasing the kaiju’s torso protected him from damage, but the force of the attack threw Zargatron backward and off of Gfantis.

Zargatron used his wings to steady himself as he flew through the air. Seconds after being hit by the beam, the monster landed deftly on his feet. Zargatron sprinted back over to the impact crater, only to find a tunnel burrowed deep into the ground. As the demon looked down in confusion at the darkness, the ground beneath his feet exploded. Gfantis Erupting from the earth, Gfantis clamped his jaws onto Zargatron’s leg. With his teeth latched onto Zargatron’s armor, Gfantis pulled down and sent the cyborg crashing to ground.

Crawling out of the ground, Gfantis leapt onto Zargatron and, sinking his teeth into the upper of Zargatron’s two right arms, used his body to pin the other arm to the ground. With half of his attacker’s arms trapped, Gfantis lashed out with his claws and tore into Zargatron’s face.

Zargatron howled in a pain as a ball of energy began to build between the two horns atop of his head. Seconds later, a beam of bright blue energy cascaded from the ball and scorched Gfantis’s shoulder, causing him to release Zargatron. Gfantis lumbered away on all fours for several steps before coming to a stop and then returning to his bipedal stance.

Gfantis stared at the ancient horror before him with contempt, and roared. As his battle cry echoed across the empty desert, he charged. Gfantis was within arms of length of Zargatron when the demon spread his wings and ascended into the air. The cyborg flew around Gfantis. Once he was behind his target Zargatron altered his flight pattern and dived for Gfantis. Instead of crashing into him again, Zargatron used his lower claws to grab Gfantis under his arms while simultaneously using his upper claws to force Gfantis’s jaws closed. Zargatron flew high into the desert sky carrying Gfantis under him. Once he reached 5,000 feet, Zaratron dived back toward the earth at full speed. When he was within 1,000 feet of the desert, he released Gfantis, sending the golden monster crashing to earth.

Zargaton circled the sky, attempting to see through the dust and sand that Gfantis’ impact had thrown into the air. He flew around the dust cloud twice before Gfantis’ oral beam cut through the dust and struck him in his torso. An anger-filled roar emitted from the dust cloud as Gfantis lumbered out of it and unleashed another volley of his oral beam onto Zargatron. The beam washed across Zargatron’s body, sending sparks flying into the air, but once more was unable to pierce Zargaton’s Thorium armor.

Realizing that the battle would remain at a standstill as long as he was in the air, Zargatron dived at Gfantis once more. After being taken off guard by the aerial attack twice already, Gfantis was prepared for this assault. When Zargatron was within range, Gfantis spun around and sent his thick tail smashing into the demon, causing it to veer off course and crash into the sand.

Gfantis pounced on his opponent, slashing across the face and then driving his foot into Zargatron’s armor coated midsection. Zargatron shook off the blow and used his right two claws to strike Gfantis with a double hammer fist. The blow caused the reptilian daikaiju to stagger backward.

Gfantis regained his footing and was preparing to attack again when he heard a strange sound above. The clash of the titans was brought to a halt as both Gfantis and Zargatron were cloaked in a massive shadow. The deafening sound grew louder and the monsters’ bodies were battered by a combination of wind and exhaust. The Yokai Demon and the Prince of the Monsters looked skyward to see the awesome form of the Duke descending from the heavens!

In preparation for the upcoming battle, SCOTT quickly downloaded several updates through the brains of the Vinyl Crushs members and into the CPU of the Duke: fighting tech-niques of the greatest hand to hand combatants of the past seventy years, downloaded in less than a second. Videos of Muhamad Ali, Don Frye, Bruce Lee, Moe Howard and hundreds of other fighters were assimilated through the unconscious brains of Vinyl Crush, enabling the Duke to internalize the information in a way that a computer never could.

The Duke landed several hundred feet from the two monsters, creating a triangle of titans. Zargartron immediately hissed at the robot which he recognized as one of the machines that the E.I.O had used to battle him for decades. Gfantis shifted his gaze between the Duke and Zargartron, keeping his eyes on both potential threats.

Inside the Duke, SCOTT was well aware of Gfantis’ history. The daikaiju was famous for battling other creatures that he perceived as a threat to himself or to his territory. SCOTT quickly determined that his most logical course of action would be to demonstrate that he was not a threat to Gfantis, while at the same time indicating his desire to destroy Zargatron. The Duke quickly lifted one of his gun shaped photon cannons and fired it at the Demon. A series of explosions danced over Zargatron’s armor, but once more the Organic Thorium shell was undamaged.

The Duke dashed toward Zargatron and then delivered a roundhouse kick to the demon’s head. The mech quickly followed the kick with two jabs to the creature’s face, and then an uppercut to its jaw. Zargatron stumbled backward. SCOTT took a second to scan Zargatron’s new body and confirmed that his armor was indeed infused with Organic Thorium. He took another second to send the information back to the E.I.O., and then refocused all of his attention on Zargatron.

The Duke threw a hook into Zargartron’s body; the beast’s armor absorbed it completely. Unaffected by the blow, the winged horror pounced on his enemy. Zargatron slashed the robot across the face and then slammed into the Duke with his body. The force of the blow sent the Duke toppling over. The robot was flat on its back and SCOTT found himself looking up at the merciless Zargatron. SCOTT directed the Duke to lift up its arms and protect its face when he saw Gfantis suddenly plow into Zargatron. Gfantis lifted the cyborg off of his feet and then threw ancient horror to the ground. Gfantis continued his attack by stomping on Zargatron. With Zargatron momentarily disabled, SCOTT took the opportunity to have the Duke lift itself back onto its feet.

Zargatron blocked a stomp with his upper arms and then used his lower arms to reach under Gfantis and grab the monster’s tail. Pulling on the tail, Zargatron caused Gfantis to fall backward. Zargatron sprang to his feet and prepared to press his attack when he was besieged by another volley of photon bursts from the Duke’s twin cannons.

Zargatron looked toward the Duke and began to charge an energy blast between its horns. While Zargatron was still charging his attack, Gfantis rose up on all fours, bit down onto Zargatron’s thigh, and pulled. The move caused Zargtron’s energy blast to fire harmlessly into the sky. The demon pounded on Gfantis’s head with his claws. Even as blow after blow connected with his head, Gfantis refused to release his grip on the demon’s leg. While Zargarton’s attention was on Gfantis, the Duke took the opportunity to run at the cyborg and connect with a roundhouse punch to his jaw. With his leg trapped by Gfantis, the force of the blow sent Zargatron reeling as he fell to the ground.

Despite the tremendous force imposed by the Duke’s fist, Zargatron was again unharmed, as his armor once more absorbed the worst of the impact. The monster shook off the attack and retaliated as soon as he hit the ground. With his right claws, Zargatron grabbed Gfantis by the neck and shoulder. He then slowly pushed the monster backward, tearing Gfantis’s jaws from around his leg. With his left arms, Zargatron lashed out and swept the legs out from under the Duke, sending the robot sprawling to the ground.

Once he had pried Gfantis free, Zargatron stood up, but still retained his grip on reptilian kaiju. The demon then took to the sky, building energy between his horns as he gained altitude. Within seconds, he was several hundred feet in the air. Zargatron twisted his wrist so that Gfantis was forced to face him, and at that point, he sent a searing bolt of energy into Gfantis’ face. Gfantis moaned in pain through his restrained jaws as he was momentarily blinded.

Zargatron then looked to the coast and appropriately shot for it like a Meatloaf album. The monster could hear Oko’s voice in his head, reminding him that capturing Gfantis was the priority. With the monster’s power added to their arsenal, the new E.I.O robot could be destroyed at any time.

SCOTT returned the Duke to its feet and saw Zargatron fleeing from the battlefield. With his new upgrades, SCOTT quickly calculated that the Duke’s engines on their own would not be sufficient to catch the monster. SCOTT realized that he would need a boost from the members of Vinyl Crush. SCOTT ran thousands of scenarios through his CPU in mere milliseconds, but none of the methods he could calculate resulted in him catching the quickly fleeing Zargatron. At that moment, SCOTT remembered a conversation that he had with Tommy. Tommy was telling him about the time he had managed to obtain tickets to see the Rolling Stones live. Tommy spoke with great enthusiasm about how the band ran out onto the stage to start their show, just as they had every other show over their long career. Tommy had even gone so far as to reenact the run out. As Tommy sprinted across the room, SCOTT had noted that Tommy ran far faster than SCOTT had ever seen him run before, even faster than his calculated maximum. SCOTT hypothesized that this particular memory had excited Tommy to the point of causing adrenaline to course through his body, giving him a temporary burst of increased speed and strength.

SCOTT realized that the time had come to access his “friend’s” enthusiasm and adrenaline. The android sent mental images of Tommy standing to the side of the stage between Mick Jagger and Keith Richards. Mick put his hand on Tommy’s shoulder and said, “Come on kid, let’s do this right.” In his sleep, Tommy smiled and jerked his legs as adrenaline coursed through his veins. The same infusion of power that coursed through Tommy’s body was also transferred to the Duke.

The robot shot into the sky, causing a sonic boom a mere three seconds after takeoff. Within ten seconds the Duke had accomplished what SCOTT had calculated impossible; he caught up to Zargatron. The Duke grabbed Zargatron’s foot, and then landed a punch to the demon’s groin. SCOTT thought that Tommy would appreciate it if he had said something sarcastic like, “Today there is no Sympathy for the Devil!”

The Duke caught Gfantis by the leg and quickly lowered him to the ground as Zargatron crashed onto the desert floor. When Gfantis’ feet had returned to the ground, he looked at Zargatron and unleashed a roar that shook the desert. Side by side, Gfantis and the Duke marched toward Zargatron. As they approached the horror, SCOTT reviewed Gfantis previous battles with other daikaiju and calculated that if they could force Zargatron to the ground for a minimum of five seconds, Gfantis would utilize an attack which, in conjunction with a specific weapon of the Duke’s, might be able to penetrate Zargatron’s armor.

Zargaratron had returned to his feet by the time the Duke and Gfantis had reached him. Gfantis attacked Zargatron from the left, biting and clawing at the demon, while simultaneously, the Duke attacked from the right, throwing punches and elbows which SCOTT timed so that he would not accidently strike Gfantis. Zargatron thrashed his claws wildly at his attackers but his counterattack was in vain. After exchanging blows for several minutes, the combined might of Gfantis and the Duke had overwhelmed Zargatron. His claws fell to his sides in exhaustion, allowing Gfantis to wrap his arms around Zargatron and toss him to the ground face first.

Gfantis stood above Zargatron, and the crescent horn at the top of his head began to glow. Seeing that the opportunity he had been waiting for was at hand, SCOTT immediately opened up the robot’s monocle and powered up the Duke’s Organic Thorium Heat Ray. Gfantis crescent beam shot forward and struck Zargatron just under his tail. Instantly, Scott focused the Duke’s heat ray on the same spot. A blazing wall of light began to form on Zargatron’s backside and grew until it exploded, propelling Zargatron forward. SCOTT’s sensors instantly detected that Zargatron’s armor had been pierced in the most sensitive of places.

With his armor damaged and two powerful foes attacking, Oko ordered Zargatron to retreat. Back in her stronghold, Oko cursed the E.I.O. and the Duke. She realized that she would have to destroy the E.I.O. prior to gaining control of Gfantis. Oko smiled as she gripped the pendant around her neck and thought that she more than possessed the means with which to destroy the E.I.O. from within!

The Duke and Gfantis watched as the demon flew off into the setting sun. SCOTT turned the Duke toward Gfantis in case the monster decided to attack, but the Prince of the Monsters simply began walking toward the setting sun. With his mission complete, SCOTT directed the Duke back to Fuji.

When the Duke arrived home. the members of Vinyl Crush were taken directly to their rooms where they would wake up unaware of the battle that had occurred.

SCOTT was standing by while Tommy’s sleeping body was taken out of the robot. As Tommy was being carried away, Sir Jack and Dr. Takarada approached SCOTT. Sir Jack placed his hand on SCOTT’s shoulder. “That was fine work out there. Had that witch gained control of Gfantis, she would have been practically invincible!” Sir Jack sighed. “Even without Gfantis, she still possess enough Organic Thorium to pose a serious threat. We may need to bring the Duke into play again soon. Tell me SCOTT, how did the robot synch up with the members of the band?”

Normally SCOTT would have given a detailed account of how he had utilized Tommy’s enthusiasm for the Rolling Stones to prevent Zargatron from escaping with Gfantis, but his interactions with Tommy had given SCOTT some insight into how a human’s emotions could affect him either positively or negatively. Given Sir Jack’s past, SCOTT calculated that informing him that it was a memory of the Rolling Stones which spurred the Duke on to victory might have a negative impact on his ego. Scott knew that with the current crisis, Sir Jack needed to be at his best. His computerized brain recalled how Tommy had often used words and phrases with double meanings to connect multiple ideas with a single thought. SCOTT turned to Sir Jack. “My boss, let us just say that I got by with a little help from my friends.”

A smile appeared on Sir Jack’s face and SCOTT knew that his choice of words had achieved the desired effect.

 

The End

Gfantis vs Dorugan

Story by Matthew Dennion

Art by Christopher Martinez

Author’s Note – This instalment of our Gfantis vs “Guest Monster” Series features Dorugan from Christopher Martinez’s and John Clode’s comic book Night of the Fire-Beast. I would like to extend a very special thank you to Christopher for letting G-Fan use his monster. Please check out his comic and follow Night of the Fire-Beast on Facebook

Lightning streaked across the dark night sky illuminating both the city skyline and the two titans that towered above it. Gfantis, The Prince of the Monsters, roared at his opponent. The mighty Dorugan snarled then replied in a terrifying roar of his own. Gfantis swiped at the air in front of him then he leaned his head back slightly. When his head shifted forward an arc of bright yellow solar energy shot out from the crescent horn atop of the monster’s head. The beam crackled as it danced across Durogan’s chest.

Dorugan roared in pain as the solar beam burned his scales. The mighty Dorugan then stepped forward, opened his mouth, and sent a burst of flames flying through the sky at Gfantis. Gfantis walked through the flames as if they were nothing more than a gentle breeze. The two reptilian horrors lumbered toward each other crushing buildings and cars beneath their massive feet. The fact that hundreds of humans were in the buildings and cars was inconsequential to the two kaiju. Dorugan waded through an apartment complex and when he had cleared the building he roared at Gfantis and grabbed the monster. The two bipedal monsters wrestled as each creature tried to throw the other to the ground. The heavier Gfantis pushed off Durogan. Gfantis stepped forward and swiped his claw across Durogan’s face. Durogan’s head snapped to the side then back into a forward position. Dorugan pulled his clawed hand back then he struck Gfantis across the face. Gfantis shook off the blow, leaned forward, and closed his jaws on Durogan’s arm. Dorugan threw his head back as he once more roared in pain. The mighty Dorugan pulled his hand back toward his body and when he did so he tore Gfantis’ head off his body. Dorugan lifted his arm to just below his face and he stared at the decapitated head that was still latched onto his arm until he heard a voice scream, “Cut!”

Ishiro Harryhausen, shook his head in disgust and walked with determined steps through the ruins of the miniature city. His assistant director, Guillermo Edwards, was walking closely behind him as Harryhausen muttered, “Why, why did I have to try and make this a live action film? Now our Gfantis suit is ruined! It’s going to take at least three days to get the suit repaired to the point where we can shoot the big fight scene again. If I had just CGI’ed the whole thing this entire fight scene would be done! It would also be quicker, cleaner, and take a hell of lot less model work!”

Edwards gently grabbed the arms of his friend and slowed down his pace. Edwards knew that the director needed a few more seconds to calm down before addressing the actors. Edwards cleared his throat, “Come on Ish, remember why were are doing this film the way that we are. We loved the original Night of the Fire-Beast film because it was a low budget live action film that was made with great love for the kaiju genre. We are shooting this film on a shoe string budget not because we have to but because it’s what Dorugan fans love about the film series.” Guillermo side stepped on a cardboard building as he took a quick look at his friend’s face to see if he was calming down. Ish looked a little more subdued and Guillermo breathed a sigh of relief. They were about halfway across the set from Dorugan and the headless Gfantis. Guillermo was starting to think that he had averted a real meltdown until one of the plastic jets tied to the catwalk overhead suddenly swung directly into Ish’s eye.”

Ish stumbled backward and crushed two miniature cardboard buildings, before stepping onto a model car that slid out from under him. Ish then fell backward and crushed an entire city block. Guillermo put his head in his hand and sighed. In thirty seconds, Ish had destroyed more of the city than the two kaiju had in two hours of filming.

Ish was laying on his back and staring up at the catwalk above him to see two stage hands still holding the lines to two swaying model jets. The stage hands both had looks on their faces that was a combination of dumbfounded and guilty. Ish’s face grew bright red as he screamed at the stage hands, “I said cut! Cut means that everything on the set stops moving! What are you guys doing swinging those planes around?”

One of the stage hands shrugged, “We were just….. you know playing around.”

Guillermo reached down to help his friend back to his feet but Ish waved him off and stood up on his own with a loud groan, “Well, your playing around has destroyed an entire set and threw my back out!” The two stagehands dropped the strings that held up the model jets, cast their heads to the floor, and slowly backed away from the edge of the catwalk.

Ish shook his head in frustration and then he began walking toward Dorugan as the headless Gfantis took a step backwards and crushed another cardboard building. Ish screamed, “It doesn’t do any good to crush the building when half of your suit is off and the cameras aren’t rolling!”

Ish pointed toward the other monster, “Durogan, you need to wait for Gfantis to release the bite grip in his suit before you pull your hand away.”

Dorugan took a step toward Ish and his tail ripped off from his body. The tailless monster turned around to see his lost appendage hanging from a string as two more stage hands were holding the string to the tail and looking at Ish in terror.”

Guillermo walked off set as Ish lost his temper, “You have to move the tail with the costume or else it tears off!” Ish stormed off of the stage, “Everyone go home! Gfantis vs Dorugan is not happening today!” He looked around at his demolished set, “Or probably any day for the next week and a half until we get this set rebuilt!” Ish opened to the door the studio as he continued to mumble about CGI.

The headless Gfantis turned from side to side and then a head and arms holding a cell phone popped out of the opening in the top of the suit. J.D. Lees opened his Twitter app and tweeted Hi G-Fans just a heads up ha ha, Gfantis vs Dorugan may not be ready to be screened at G-fest!” JD turned his head to the actor in the Dorugan suit, “I am getting to old to climb in and out of these costumes.”

The End

Gfantis vs. the Zombie Kaiju

Story by Eric S Brown

Art by Scott Caffrey

The following entry into the Gfantis vs Guest Monster Series features the undead Kaiju of Eric S. Brown’s Zombie Kaiju Apocalypse. In Eric’s book kaiju are overrunning mankind and as a last ditch effort to stop the kaiju a brilliant scientist creates a virus designed to the kill the kaiju. The virus not only kills the kaiju but also brings the monsters and the soldiers who were fighting them back as zombies. Humanity is forced to the brink extinction as hordes of not only zombies but undead kaiju roam the planet devouring everything in sight. Can even the mighty Gfantis survive in such a world?

Zombie Kaiju Apocalypse and all of Eric Brown’s Novels can be found on Amazon!

Colonel Drake watched the scene of horror unfolding below as the helicopter he was aboard hovered high above the battle. The great beasts were breaking through the defenses he had organized around the nuclear power plant. One of the monsters stood sixty meters tall. It was bipedal the upper portion of its body was more akin to a giant squid than anything like the reptilian body he had expected it to have. Its numerous tentacles slashed furiously through the air as heavy shells from the row of tanks in its path struck it. The explosions lit the night with flashes of orange and yellow. If they had any effect on the squid kaiju, beyond further enraging the creature, Drake couldn’t tell. They had certainly done nothing to slow the monster. The other kaiju was bipedal as well. Its body covered in thick scales. Red eyes glowed like furnaces beneath the massive, ram-like horns atop its head.

The ram kaiju waded into the row of tanks with a demonic roar. Leaning over, it picked up an Abrams, crushing the tank in its powerful fingers. The monster didn’t even flinch as the tank’s shell caved inward under the power of its grip and suddenly exploded in its grasp.

The squid kaiju reached the row of tanks, its tentacles smashing downward into their ranks. Some tanks died where they sat as the tentacles bashed them into crumpled wrecks of twisted metal. Others were picked up by the tentacles and flung through the air like toys.

The entire area stunk of rot and decay. The smell seeped into the helicopter making Colonel Drake gag. Both of the kaiju were dead. They had been brought back to life by the same virus the United States had released to kill them in the first place. That old saying, out of the frying pan and into the fire, had taken on a whole new meaning to Drake. Stopping the kaiju when they were alive and could feel pain had been hard enough, now things appeared hopeless. If the two dead kaiju weren’t stopped soon they would reach the nuclear plant and cause a meltdown that would affect the entire coastline.

Out of the corner of his eye, Drake spotted a long rippling trail in the ground to the north of the power plant. It came onward towards the two kaiju and the remaining tanks. At first, Drake wondered if it was the result of an earthquake brought on by the rampaging dead kaiju but then the earth itself broke open. Rocks and chunks of the very ground itself were thrown skyward as Gfantis tore his way out of the earth.

Alarms were going off all across his pilot’s controls as the man struggled to move the helicopter Drake rode in out of the path of twenty foot wide piece of grass covered ground that came flying at it. Drake held on for dear life as the copter lurched sideways narrowly avoiding being knocked out of the sky.

Gfantis brought himself up to his full fifty five meter height to give a piercing cry that caught the attention of the two dead kaiju. As one, they turned to face him. Accepting their unspoken challenge, Gfantis dropped to all fours, charging them. The squid like Kaiju staggered as Gfantis plowed into it. Gfantis’s horns impaled the rotting, slime slicked tissue of its body. The horns ripped long groves that leaked a thick, black blood like substance as Gfantis simultaneously pulled the squid kaiju down and itself up to climb on top it. Tentacles lashed out, wrapping themselves around Gfantis’s arms and torso. Gfantis raged against their hold on him. Flexing his arms, Gfantis tore several of the rotting tentacles loose from the squid like Kaiju’s body. They flopped onto the ground where they continued to writhe as if still alive. Standing over the squid like Kaiju, Gfantis planted one of his giant feet onto its body holding the creature to the earth as he lowered his head. Energy welled up inside of him to be unleashed in a blast from his crescent shaped horn. The beam racked over the squid like kaiju igniting its decaying body with a blast of solar radiation so powerful that the squid like kaiju burst into flames. Gfantis removed his foot as the burning squid monster spasmed in death throes that shook the earth beneath it.

The ram like kaiju’s eyes glowed a brighter red as it lowered its head and came bounding towards Gfantis. Gfantis stood his ground, planting his feet, as if to ready himself for the other kaiju’s impact. The ram like kaiju never hit Gfantis though. Gfantis sidestepped the monster’s attack and caught it with an upper cut from his right hand that struck the ram kaiju under its chin. With the echoing sound of snapping bone, the ram like kaiju’s head snapped back and upwards as it left the body it had been attached to. The ram like kaiju’s head went bouncing among the ruined remains of the tanks as its headless body stumbled, spinning around, to topple over.

As quickly as it had begun, the battle between the giant monsters was over. Colonel Drake held his breath, waiting to see what Gfantis would do next. He had no other forces in the immediate area to stand against Gfantis should he too decide the power plant was tempting target to be trampled for his amusement. The jets he had called in during the clash of the great beasts were still streaking through the sky and minutes away from reaching the area. If Gfantis went for the power plant, they would be too late to try to stop him.

Gfantis turned his head as if to acknowledge the presence of Colonel Drake’s helicopter. Drake felt his heart skip a beat inside his chest as he stared into Gfantis’s eyes. Then, Gfantis dropped, his mighty hands tearing into the dirt and he was gone beneath it. Drake watched the trail of disrupted earth stretch southward as Gfantis burrowed beneath it. He gave a silent prayer of thanks that Gfantis had deemed both his helicopter and the power plant unworthy of his attention. He was sure Gfantis would be back one day however and when that day came, Drake doubted he would live through it.

The End

Gfantis vs Durontus

Story by Scott Schmidt

Art by Tyler Sowles

Durontus comes from Tyler and Scotts comic book Durontus: The Lost Serpent. You can follow them https://www.facebook.com/Durontus/

Chapter 1

Out Of The Void

May 4th, 2048, 11:40 A.M.

[_ -25.57 Lat, -100.72 Long _]

The South Pacific

The night sky shone with infinite clarity above the tropical waters four-hundred miles off the coast of Chile. The dark abyss that was the ocean lapped gently upon itself, its balance of calm and chaos the very wonder of nature. Suddenly, despite no change in the steady Pacific winds, the ocean current suddenly reversed its course in reaction to forces invisible to the naked eye.

High in the stratosphere, a dark orb the size of a needle-tip crackled with cosmic energy. With each spark, the black mass surged and grew, engulfing the surrounding space until it spanned hundreds of kilometers. The force from the other-worldly storm was so great that torrents of water funneled upwards towards the orb in the sky.

As the storm reached its peak, a shape began to emerge from the black fathom like some elder god of an antediluvian age. Four giant limbs covered in hard scales and tipped with razor-sharp claws thrashed amidst the sizzling electricity of the cosmic disturbance. As the being attempted to free itself from the clutches of the dark portal, a gnashing, guttural sound rent the air, ushered forth from the gargantuan beast’s tooth-filled maw.

Then, as suddenly as it had begun, the storm dissipated, the orb vanished and the brilliance of the night sky returned. But while the portal ceased to be, the creature that it conveyed was left behind, plummeting with incredible velocity towards the earth’s surface.

The gigantic beast smashed into the Pacific Ocean with the force of a dozen atomic bombs, a geyser of displaced water shooting straight into the air nearly five kilometers high. As the great scaled creature sank for miles below the surface, an army of tidal waves cresting at ten stories or more, rippled out from impact site.

And deep below, a monster unlike any this world had known, began to gather itself, its animal instincts calling out for nourishment and purpose.

Chapter 2

Calm Waters

May 5th, 2048, 2:11 A.M.

[_ -54.22 Lat, -52.91 Long _]

The Falkland Islands

The Ghost dipped in and out of the dark waters near the Falkland Islands just off the east coast of southern South America. The research vessel was following Durontus on his annual voyage from their home base in the north Atlantic to the wide-open Pacific via the infamous Cape Horn trade route.

Sitting in front of The Ghost’s automated steering controls, Captain Falk Hansen’s eyes were heavy with sleep from the lull of the ocean’s rhythm. He sipped at a neglected mug of coffee, but spat with distaste at its flavor and temperature. A thought occurred to Falk that he ought to make barista experience a necessity for the next round of G.W.G. interns.

The captain rose from his seat and stretched his limbs, creaking like a wooden house in a windstorm. In his forty-eight years he had put his body through many grinders: world traveler and historian, billionaire businessman and most recently, founder and chief officer of the Gargantua Watch Group. The first two were cake compared to the rigors of the G.W.G. Being the first job of its kind, how was he to know that monitoring, researching and defending a Class 1 Gargantua would prove to be the tireless and thankless task that it was?

But, he was never one for sleep and needed no one’s praise. The reason he endured the lack of schedule, endless paperwork and politics with the United Nations oversight committee was coasting at a steady 40 knots several miles off the port side of the ship.

Hansen strode out onto the deck and brought a pair of binoculars to his eyes. He smiled as he spied the moon’s rays glinting off a jagged set of scaled fins that sliced the water, which represented about five percent of the creature they belonged to. Below the surface lurked a creature of immense size and great power.

At five-hundred and fifty feet long and weighing approximately thirty tons, Durontus was the largest living creature on the planet, a title he claimed by destroying every other Gargantua that entered its domain thus far. When Hansen and the G.W.G. first established contact with Durontus, one of the first tests they conducted was to calculate the creature’s age through carbon dating samples of its scales, but the tests had all proven inconclusive, some results claiming Durontus to be hundreds of millions of years old.

Hansen wasn’t sure what he believed about the creature. Even after several years of near round-the-clock study, it seemed he and his team were always learning something new about Durontus’ traits and, if you believed his chief biologist Dr. Emma Perry, his “personality.” He would argue that habit is not the same as personality, but without a doubt the giant serpent seemed to have purpose in all of his action.

Still peering through the binoculars, Falk observed Durontus’ scales sinking below the surface, signaling it was diving to a lower depth, presumably to increase its speed. He didn’t ponder the action much until a gruff voice sounded over the vessel’s loud speaker.

“Falk, you better come see this,” said the voice of Dan Krieger. Hansen’s stomach went queasy for a moment. He already knew what Dan was going to say.

“We’ve got a potential Level 1 Alert happening right now.”

Falk rushed inside, cursing under his breath for not fitting the bill for a full-time barista himself.

Chapter 3

Around The Horn

Dan Krieger sat at a video console on the operations deck of The Ghost. The screen was filled with feeds from various media outlets, each reporting on the subject of a natural disaster impacting miles of the Chilean coast. He watched Hansen enter the deck with an all-too-familiar look of dread and anticipation.

In his years as the U.N. Advisor to the G.W.G., Krieger had been front-and-center for all of Durontus’ “events,” as they were officially called. He fully understood the potential magnitude of what was unfolding before his eyes. Sudden or unexplainable environmental changes nearly always acted as a prelude to an event and from what he had seen so far, this latest disaster seemed to fit that criteria.

“What’s happened, Dan?”

“Massive tidal wave destroyed nearly thirty percent of the Chilean coast. Thousands reported dead, billions in damages.” Krieger’s even, matter-of-fact tone made the news sound routine, a trait of his that always bothered Hansen when it came to human cost of the Gargantua and their Darwinian existence.

“What’s the report from the Pacific Weather Survey?” Hansen asked as he sat in front of his own video console to begin checking all the usual atmospheric monitoring services.

“Nothing substantial, only some far-flung theories related to El Nino, the lunar cycle and such.”

Hansen slowly scratched at his neatly-trimmed beard. “Seismic?” he asked.

“No readings from World Geo Lab, so we can rule out earthquake,” responded Dan. “They’re sending out a field team to pin-point an origin site, though.”

“I think that may be a poor idea…” said Hansen quietly.

“Why’s that?”
“Because,” said Hansen flatly.

He stood, pointing a pen-sized remote control at a large, digital wall monitor. A real-time satellite scan of Durontus blinked to life on the monitor. The creature’s vitals, location, speed, projected course and a host of other information filled the corners of the screen. “The old boy submerged not ten minutes ago, headed out to deeper waters. His speed has already increased twenty knots.”

Krieger let out a reserved sigh. “I’m going to move us to condition yellow and rouse the crew.”

Being former Special Forces, preparedness was ingrained in Dan. As the U.N. Advisor, his duties required him to be as hands-on during events as possible in order to gather vital intel on how to combat Gargantua, Durontus included. Should the world need to defend itself from its presumptive defender, Dan Krieger was the first line of Earth’s defense.

“I’ll set tracking coordinates and chart a following-course,” said Hansen. “Looks like we’re headed around the Horn.”

As Dan went below deck to set the crew in motion, Falk watched footage of the tidal wave disaster scroll across the monitors. He sat quietly for a few moments, holding on to the last minutes of silence he would experience for the foreseeable future.

Chapter 4

A Place in The Sun

May 5th, 2048, 6:20 A.M.

[_ -28.85 Lat, -84.78 Long _]

The South Pacific

The creature from another time and another place, known there as GFantis, swam unevenly through the warming waves of the Pacific. The experience of traveling through a cosmic gate had left the monstrous, dragon-like being dazed and lethargic. Lack of exposure to sunlight during the journey had also contributed to his weakened state as solar absorption was his body’s chief method of energy production.

GFantis’ instinct led him eastward towards the brightening horizon and towards land. He sought any plot of earth on which he could lay undisturbed and replenish his energy stores. Once accomplished, he would go about establishing his territory and investigating any threats in the area.

As the massive reptile approached the South American coast, large chunks of debris crashed in and broke upon the creature’s scaled body. Thousands of wooden planks, the remains of human structures from all along the beaches of Chile, floated on top of the briny Pacific. The ebb of the tide had also pulled scores of human bodies out into the deep, resulting in sharks gathering in pools beneath the floating remains.

With the coastline coming into view, the land began to rise, GFantis’ body slowly lifting out of the water. Feet fully planted in the sandy ocean floor, the creature rose full upright, hundreds of gallons of water and seaweed cascading down his 30-story frame.

Now standing in the shallows of a natural harbor, GFantis surveyed the landscape and let out a guttural roar to announce his presence to any challengers within range of his call. His keen, reptilian eyes scanned the coast for miles in either direction, finding no sign of life. The ground shuddered with GFantis’ massive steps as he moved inland, pulverizing even more the ruins of a human city destroyed by the tidal waves created by the monster’s arrival.

Not far from the coast, GFantis came to a secluded stretch of land nestled in a mountainous valley. The sun was above the horizon line now, a heavy globe of shimmering red, gathering heat like the bowels of a blast furnace. The giant reptile could feel the temperature rising by the minute and he proceeded to secure a place in the canyon to rest his weary frame.

In a matter of hours, the full rays of the sun would render him as strong and resilient as any Gargantua that had thus far walked the face of this planet.

Chapter 5

Captain’s Orders

May 5th, 2048, 8:42 A.M.

[_ -48.52 Lat, -85.25 Long _]

The South Pacific

A cutting sea wind whipped across the deck of The Ghost as Falk Hansen stood before the crew of his ship near its bow. The state-of-the-art vessel rode smooth in the choppy waters despite its near full-throttle speed as they pursued Durontus towards the area of the tidal wave disaster.

“—and that’s all we know so far. Those are the facts as reported to us,” Falk explained to the gathered crew. “Officially, this is still being classified as a natural disaster scenario and emergency crews are only now mobilizing, but we’ve all been through this a time or two and we know the signs.”

Hansen turned his gaze and pointed to a bulk on the horizon line like a jagged mountain range. “Old boy’s in pursuit mode. Something’s caught his attention. And we all know there’s really only one thing that gets his attention.”

“And if it is a new Gargantua,” he continued, “then we’ll be going to work very soon.”

The small crew of dedicated men and women shuffled uneasily, a natural reaction for anyone faced with interaction with creatures bigger than buildings. Counting Hansen and Krieger, they numbered twelve and consisted of two basic camps: the science team and the field team.

The research and monitoring team, dubbed the “science” team by non-members, was in charge of all interactions the G.W.G. had with Durontus. Biology, Oceanography and Meteorology were but a few of the fields the science team specialized in. Headed up by Dr. Emma Perry, a pioneer in the field of Gargantua study, these dedicated scientists were responsible for providing the world with nearly all the known knowledge of the Gargantua species.

The field team, headed by Krieger, was something altogether different, more akin to a group of storm-chasers than anything else. As part of the detailed rules and regulations enforced upon the G.W.G by the United Nations, Krieger was officially appointed as an arbiter between the two groups. He was also given the task of recording and reporting real-time data of every Gargantua encounter, streamed directly to the UN’s own data centers.

This was accomplished in a way that most people would describe as a death wish, but the men and women of Krieger’s crew would more likely describe it as the best job on earth.

Krieger’s team utilized cutting-edge technology in the form of personal vehicles that operated on both land and sea. Each craft contained onboard data-monitoring equipment and rugged video rigs, all meant to be used up close and personal which often put members of the field team within hundreds of yards of ground zero during a Gargantua battle.

While the UN made it no secret they were learning as much about Gargantua and Durontus as possible, Hansen was no fool. He couldn’t confirm it, but it was likely that the type of data Krieger’s team was gathering was funneled to various weapons labs around the world.

Information such as the durability of the serpent’s armor-like scales, his biting force and the chemical makeup of his acid breath were being used to build weapons to combat other Gargantua, Durontus included, he guessed.

Having turned his life upside down and inside out for the sake of the creature, Falk hoped he never lived to see the day when those weapons were needed.

“We’re still a few hours out from Durontus’ projected destination,” he said. “ Per usual we’ll send in drones to gather our initial intelligence and then see what we’re dealing with.”

Hansen dismissed the crew to their respective preparatory duties, but lingered on the deck for a few moments. Looking seaward, he wondered what mighty beast awaited Durontus. But, as no single Gargantua thus far seemed related to another in any way biologically, he had no way of knowing. All he could do was hope that Durontus was the victor.

Falk’s phone vibrated in his coat pocket, signaling that Dr. Perry was ready to be synced up via satellite with her team aboard The Ghost.

Chapter 6

When Worlds Collide

May 5th, 2048, 9:45 A.M.

[_ -33.62 Lat, -71.28 Long _]

Chile, South America

The equatorial sun beat down on GFantis’ scaly hide as he lay entrenched on the canyon floor, eyelids clamped shut. If you were close enough to the creature you would have been able to hear the crackle of the solar energy being absorbed through the dragon creature’s skin.

GFantis had been restoring for several hours and could already feel the power returning to his limbs. The sluggishness from his journey was slipping away, vim and vigor taking its place. Once to full power he would begin establishing a wide territorial net.

Suddenly, the monster’s gigantic nostrils twitched as they plucked a unique scent from the airstream. Accompanying the scent was a slight tremor that GFantis could feel along his back as he lay nestled firmly into the earth.

GFantis’ sub consciousness, analyzing the data in milliseconds, began sending warnings to all of his receptors. Slowly, his limbs began to lurch with movement, the vast amounts of blood needed to power the creature rushing to their designated locations. GFantis’ eyes began to flutter, his vision slowly returning.

But, by the time GFantis fully awakened, it was too late.

In an astounding display of ingenuity and dexterity, the mighty Gargantua serpent Durontus was soaring through the air above the dragon GFantis.

With pinpoint accuracy, Durontus had located his enemy. Using his tremendous swimming speed, the serpent had used the beach as a natural ramp, allowing him to vault over the coastal mountains and to land directly on top of the invader. His spring attack also had the benefit of making detection difficult since contact with the earth was minimal. It was the kind of attack that only a savage, primordial creature could perpetrate, senses and intuition honed by a millennia of battles.

The sky cracked with the primal roar of two Gargantua commencing a bloody struggle to the death. Durontus landed atop GFantis’ defenseless form, pinning him down with a fury of tooth and claw. The serpent slashed downwards with both claws in tandem at GFantis’ upraised arm. Durontus’ long neck snaked in over the dragon’s defenses, striking GFantis’ head several times with cobra-like quickness.

Towering over the smaller creature, Durontus reared on his hind legs with claws upraised.

“Brrr-Wraa!” screeched the serpent.

But, though he was the smaller of the two giants, GFantis was faster with less bulk to move than the monstrous water serpent. As Durontus came down with his claws with the intent of eviscerating the reptile, GFantis spun in the loose earth, presenting his enemy a sharply horned back instead of a tender belly.

Durontus roared in unanticipated pain as his fore claws were pierced by the dragon’s protective spines. With the reaction putting the serpent off balance, GFantis seized the moment by rolling into Durontus’ leg, tossing the monster and freeing himself from the serpent’s onslaught. Durontus landed in the barren earth with a deep groan from the ground. In a cloud of dust and debris, both Gargantua clambered their huge bodies into position to face one another.

GFantis stood upright, forearms poised for attack or defense, a soft glow surrounding the reptile’s absorptive scales. A low growl trailed from his open maw, fangs caked with spit and dirt from the furious encounter. He breathed with heavy snorts, head slightly lowered in an aggressive nature.

Durontus whirled to all fours, muscles and limbs tight and pulled in to make himself a smaller target. His lethal tail coiled around him in defense, slapping the ground in front of him in an attempt to enrage his formidable enemy.

What he got instead was a massive beam of white-hot solar energy straight to his flank, sending the serpent into a roll across the terrain back towards the coast. GFantis roared in triumph as the glowing, crescent-shaped horn on his crown crackled and cooked from discharging the sun’s radiation which he had spent hours taking in.

Unknowable to the feuding Gargantua was another casualty from GFantis’ solar beam; a G.W.G. scouting drone.

Chapter 7

The Size Of Things

May 5th, 2048, 11:29 A.M.

[_ -33.62 Lat, -71.28 Long _]

Chilean Coast

“Did you see that?”

“Oh my god, what was that?”

“How on earth—”

The science team aboard The Ghost was nearly as caught off guard as Durontus by the new Gargantua’s energy attack. The command deck was a flurry of video screens, data-crunching applications, and live footage. Information was pouring in through the team’s monitoring systems, but before they could decipher it, they had to overcome the natural human reaction of shock and wonder at the spectacle they had just seen.

A bout of silence hung in the air for a short time until Hansen broke it. “Well?” he asked of the brightest minds he and Emma could find. Even Dr. Perry herself, patched into the command deck via video feed and receiving all of the same information as the crew, was still formulating the situation.

“Durontus’ vitals are steady. Looks to have taken moderate-to-severe damage on his right flank from the unknown creature’s attack,” reported one of the crew.

Falk breathed a sigh of relief. He knew Durontus was resilient, but with the great power these creatures possessed, one could never easily guess the devastating effects until post-battle. Their adrenaline compensated for so much of the shock to their systems that injury data was often unreliable in the field.

“What about that attack?” he followed up with quickly to keep the team on their toes and to bring a rhythm to the chaos. It was a strategy he had used during his corporate years.

The atmospheric officer directed Hansen’s attention to a screen with sensorial readouts from the remaining drone machines. “We’re picking up heightened radiation levels, almost certainly caused by the creature’s energy discharge. Data seems to point to it being solar in origin.”

Dr. Emma Perry crunched several lines into her computer terminal, cross-referencing the drone readouts with hundreds of databases from around the world. Her event protocol always began with classifying the physical makeup of the new Gargantua and finding the closest occurrences of those features known to humans in nature. This analysis acted as an anchoring point for developing defensive strategies to fight the creature should Durontus lose the battle.

“The unknown must have something like chloroplasts somewhere in its biology to be able to use the sun’s energy. The closest species we have is the spotted salamander and the oriental hornet. Both utilize solar power in some manner,” Emma reported after gathering a complete thought.

“Nothing that uses it offensively or aggressively, though?” Hansen asked.

“None in that manner,” Perry confirmed. “At this point, I would hypothesize two viable strategies. Either damage the unknown’s solar absorption method or lure the unknown into an area with no direct sunlight.”

“One sounds more insane than the next,” remarked Falk. “But, that’s usually the case in these scenarios.”

Emma shrugged and continued to type in and assess the situation. “So far we’ve got lots of question marks on the unknown’s biological material. The drone sensors are reporting inconsistent data. Tell Dan we’re going to need some local samples of the unknown’s exterior.”

Hansen picked up his satellite phone to radio Krieger who had already taken to the field with his team. “Krieger. Emma needs direct samples from the unknown. We’re bringing the uplink needles online now.”

“Copy that,” came Krieger’s even tone. “Beta squad is approaching the unknown’s perimeter. I’m heading over to Big D to assess his wounds.”

“You and your men stay safe,” said Hansen.

“Report to you in ten,” he responded.

“Captain Hansen,” spoke a crewman on the command deck. “Durontus is back on his feet. The creatures seem to be preparing to engage once more.”

Each member of the science team held their gaze fixed to the drone footage monitors as the serpent-like Durontus and the dragon-like unknown raced towards each other with rage in their eyes.

Chapter 8

Under Foot

May 5th, 2048, 12:01 A.M.

[_ -33.34 Lat, -71.22 Long _]

Chile, South America

Dan Krieger sped through the ravaged terrain of a seaside village in the G.W.G. land/sea conversion vehicle known as the “pod,” named for its oval shape and streamlined design. The vehicle was developed by one of Hansen’s tech companies and currently only in use by members of Krieger’s team.

The pod, remarkable for its ability to convert on the fly from a durable, lightweight personal submarine to an all-terrain land speeder, was capable of high speeds and precision handling in both modes. Also aboard the craft was a miniaturized version of every piece of monitoring equipment utilized by the crew on board The Ghost.

In land speeder mode, the pod resembled a hybrid of motorbike and dune buggy. Krieger was strapped in securely to the fighter jet-styled cockpit, the large, clear hatch providing the driver with a clear line of vision while data screens scrolled along its base with relevant terrain information.

Looming ahead of Krieger was the titanic struggle of the two Gargantua, the earth shaking near-constant as the beasts traded blow after blow from razor-sharp claws and row after row of savage teeth.

As Dan pushed the technological marvel to its limits, he came closer and closer to ground zero of the event. Cameras fixed on the pod’s exterior automatically detected the serpent’s biosignature and began relaying all relevant data. But, even with all of the technology at the G.W.G.’s disposal, there was no real substitute for concrete samples. Every creature, terrestrial or other, was composed of DNA and retrieving it was vital to the mission.

To obtain a physical sample from a rampaging monster, Krieger himself had helped develop a method that he and his team used to great effect. Each pod carried with it a high-powered launcher that shot an eight-foot hypodermic needle housed inside a titanium capsule. Once the needle pierced the creature, DNA analysis was performed autonomously inside the capsule and the results uploaded by satellite network.

The strike more than likely didn’t even register with the giant creatures’ pain receptors, but the data relayed told the G.W.G. as much as they could possibly know about a Gargantua. Their DNA often acted as a cipher to unlock a creature’s weaknesses.

Approaching from Durontus’ right rear, Dan had a plain view of the damage wrought by the unknown’s energy blast. From his estimate, nearly sixty percent of the serpent’s flank was covered in deep, penetrating burns. The edges of the wounds were black with burned flesh, charred and curling. Closer to the center, patches of dark red and white shown through, an indicator of exposed muscle and deep tissue.

He had been in enough combat to know third degree burns by sight.

Krieger’s pod climbed along a high, rocky ridge, spitting dirt and gravel from under its heavy, all-terrain tires. The ridge ran parallel to where the monsters were squaring off and was the closest Dan could maneuver the pod without getting smashed by the stomp of enraged colossi.

The veteran Special Forces officer skidded the pod to a halt at somewhere near five-hundred yards out from Durontus’ injured side. He clicked off the heavy safety buckle and popped open the vehicle’s hatch. Springing out of the craft, he opened a panel on the exterior that contained the needle delivery system.

He grabbed the collapsible tripod first and set it up on the lip of the ridge, then ran back to grab the high-powered propulsion rifle and a needle canister. He secured the rifle to the tripod and loaded the canister round. A camera on the rifle calculated the trajectory and Dan took aim.

“Krieger here, ready to fire needle monitor number one.”
“We’re ready to receive the uplink, fire when ready,” came Hansen’s voice over the pod’s intercom.

Aligning his iron sights with the estimated line of trajectory, Dan squeezed the mounted rifle’s trigger, sending the needle capsule hurtling towards Durontus’ flank with enough force to puncture the primal serpent’s heavy layer of skin.

Still peering through the rifle’s scope, Dan watched the successful shot as the needle sunk deep into its target area.

“Nice shot, we’re transmitting data now,” came Hansen’s confirmation.

Krieger hurried back to his pod, checking on the status of his other team members. He clicked his main monitor over to a topographical map that followed the other three pods in real-time. Everyone seemed to be safe and in position.

“Beta squad, prepare to fire,” Krieger commanded.

Just as he gave his team the go ahead, the ground shook with the greatest tremor yet as Durontus stumbled backwards, reeling from a powerful charge by the unknown Gargantua. The serpent collapsed in a heap in the sandy shallows, a deluge of seawater and mud splashing into the air.

“We have no uplink, Dan,” came Hansen’s voice.

“Beta, what’s the status of your shot?”

“Negative, sir, we missed,” came the report.

“Well, we need to do something,” said Hansen over intercom. “Durontus’ vitals are much worse than we thought. He’s getting bested out there.”

Dan watched from his perch as the invader loomed over the prostrate form of Durontus. The unknown looked to be readying a killing blow, but just as it was to land, the giant serpent whipped its massive tail around the legs of the dragon creature and continued to coil around his enemy with his bigger, longer body and neck.

Then, similar to the crocodile death roll, Durontus tumbled his tightly coiled body towards the surf with his enemy ensnared, unable to free itself. Krieger stared in wonder as the serpent and his prisoner disappeared slowly beneath the ocean waves.

Chapter 9

The Last Breath

May 5th, 2048, 12:01 A.M.

[_ -31.22 Lat, -75.80 Long _]

Chilean Coast

GFantis wriggled in sporadic attempts to free himself from his enemy’s deathly coil. The pressure began to build in his ears as the serpent swam deeper and deeper into the deep, dark depths of the Pacific.

The dragon had no way of knowing the lengths to which the serpent could survive under water, he only knew that his own ability to do so was limited. What’s more, the farther he was dragged from the surface, the less his exposure to the sun. For those reasons, GFantis began to work himself into a frenzy, arching his back and gyrating with a saw-like motion.

Durontus had put all his energy into pulling the invader deep below the surface, but as his enemy writhed, the pain in the serpent’s side began to be too much. With each convulsion, Durontus’ coil began to weaken. His wound burned sharply, blood flowing from the openings and slowly GFantis began to emerge from the serpent’s deadly grasp.

As Durontus’ tail slackened its vice-like grip, GFantis broke free and began a mad dash for the surface. His whole body clawed for life as he thrashed violently upward. But the mighty serpent had not succumbed to his injuries, but instead fought on to defend his domain: the land, sea and air of planet Earth.

Durontus’ serpentine neck shot out, his tooth-filled beak latching firmly onto the meaty ankle of his fleeing enemy. GFantis’ momentum was slowed by half as the massive weight of Durontus acted like an anchor, pulling much of the fight from the dragon creature with the surface still hundreds of yards away.

As GFantis struggled upward, Durontus fought downward, utilizing his wide, webbed claws and scales in their natural environment. Great waves of ocean surged upward as the serpent swam in reverse in an attempt to drown his adversary. Sensing the dragon’s demise, Durontus tightened his hold.

GFantis’ lungs burned with fire, his eyes dimming as his air supply ran low. His energy was draining rapidly and he could not shake the serpent’s bite on his leg. The dragon’s forelimbs compulsively thrashed at the endless ocean, the will to survive ever-present, even when survival was impossible.

But just as the otherworldly creature was near unconsciousness, a crackling, black orb appeared in the corner of his vision, growing rapidly. A spark of recognition ignited in the monster’s brain at the sight of the orb and for a moment GFantis’ strength returned.

A moment was all the dragon needed as he gathered the last of his solar energy and reached down towards the serpent’s head. Durontus let out a gargled bellow as a surging bolt of white-hot electricity arched into the serpent’s face. The blast forced the serpent to release GFantis from his jaws.

While the serpent recovered from the paralyzing shock, GFantis swam with all his energy towards the growing black orb. Lungs bursting and vision failing, the monster lost consciousness just as he propelled himself into the middle of the pulsing, cosmic gate. A bright flash bathed the ocean in white light as the gate blinked out of existence.

And with it, the mighty solar dragon, GFantis.

Chapter 10

More Questions Than Answers

May 7th, 2048, 8:20 A.M.

[_ 16.87 Lat, -130.95 Long _]

The North Pacific

The Ghost sat anchored just off the coast of a small nest of uninhabited islands hundreds of miles west of the Gulf of California. Since the battle with the unknown Gargantua, Hansen and his crew had been holding their current position while Durontus rested and recovered from the titanic struggle.

Nestled in an underwater cave, it would be days, maybe even weeks, before the serpent would emerge for food. The creature was currently in a hibernation-like state so his body could allocate all of its resources to healing.

In the meantime, the G.W.G. had a mountain of data to read over and interpret, though most of the crew were skeptical of what they would find. Because of the field team’s missed opportunity for a DNA sample from Durontus’ foe, large sections of data on the dragon-like creature was unreliable with nothing to cross-reference it with.

The real question was what happened two days ago, miles below the surface?

Before Krieger and his crew could mobilize to follow the battle underwater in their pods, just like that, the event appeared to be over. There was a strange electronic pulse that temporarily knocked out all of the G.W.G.’s equipment, then Durontus surfaced and casually headed out to sea as if the entire encounter had never happened.

It didn’t seem possible that the serpent had enough time to do away completely with the unknown’s corpse and Hansen didn’t believe that Durontus would give up pursuit if it had escaped. He pondered back and forth between scenarios, each one as likely, or unlikely, as the next.

“How fitting that an event that began in mystery should end in mystery as well,” said Hansen outloud.

Leaning on the ship’s railing next to Hansen, Krieger looked at him with a blank stare. “Yeah, something like that,” he remarked, bringing a beer bottle to his lips.

Hansen shook his snifter of scotch, the ice cubes clanking against the glass. “Well, whatever happened, I guess the old boy survived another one. We all did.”

“Just barely, I think,” replied Dan. “I’m getting another, you want a refill?”

“No thanks. Think I’m going to call it a night,” Hansen replied, heading for his cabin.

The Ghost rocked easy in the shallow water, its crew resting soundly with a feeling of relief after the event’s conclusion.

Though none slept more soundly than the primordial serpent Durontus, tightly coiled against the cold rocks of the sea cave, miles below the surface. For the serpent, neither the how nor the why mattered. All that mattered was the he was alive and he had defended his home from a powerful enemy. He had earned his rest.

The End

Gfantis and Talos: The Arrival of Araddon

Story by Matthew Dennion

Art by John Opal

Author’s Note – The following entry into the Gfantis vs Guest Monster Series features the colossal godlike hero known as Talos from my novella The Kaiju and the Crime Fighter. Talos is a mysterious being who stands 150 feet tall and whose skin, armor, and helmet are composed entirely of bronze. In addition to his size, Talos also possesses the ability of flight and several energy attacks. During an attack on Earth by an alien force the being who would be known as Talos suddenly awoke and found himself buried underground. He did not know who he was or how he had arrived underground. All he knew was that he felt compelled to protect the Earth. The giant flew to the battle and joined several other heroes in fighting off the invasion. Due to his resemblance to the automaton of Greek Mythology, the giant was named Talos.

In The Kaiju and the Crime Fighter, the metropolis of Port City is attacked by the nearly invincible fire breathing kaiju Gargantasaurus. The city’s protector is a vigilante known as Raptor. For all his skills and weapons, Raptor is only a man. He knows that he cannot defeat Gargantasaurus. The vigilante immediately contacts Talos to battle the kaiju who informs Raptor that he will require several hours to arrive at Port City. With a grim determination, Raptor attempts to hold off Gargantasaurus until the bronze giant can arrive. This story takes place after the events of the novel.

The novella is available in both print and digital formats on Amazon and at www.matthewdennion.com

Greece

A large figure dressed entirely in black robes stood near the edge of a huge and seemingly bottomless round crater that was located in the middle of a vast field overlooking the Mediterranean Sea. The man was known as Kane. He was a master of the dark arts and he was particularly well versed in the fields of demonology and necromancy. He stood nearly seven feet tall and had a muscular frame. His long black hair and beard shrouded his neck, shoulders, and face. From a distance, the thick hair and beard gave Kane the appearance of having a lion’s mane which is exactly what he had intended it to do. Kane was a masochist who had long ago dedicated his life to the Masters of Hell. He had made contact with several of the highest ranking demons in Hell’s Army who had promised him untold power and fortune if he was able to free them from their fiery prison.

The edge of the pit where Kane stood was a perfect circle that measured nearly 200 feet across. Kane inhaled through his nose and his nostrils were assaulted by the foul smell of rotting eggs. The odor was a clear indicator that there was a source of sulfur at the bottom of the pit. For centuries, the people of the nearby town had used it as a place to dispose of garbage. Despite the countless tons of refuse that had been dumped into the pit, the garbage had not piled up to the point where it was visible. The people of Greece thought that the pit led to a river of magma that burned all of the garbage they threw into it before flowing into the nearby sea. Decades of research and excavations of various ancient sites told Kane a different story about the pit.

What the people of Greece perceived as a volcanic vent was in truth a gateway to Hell itself. Kane had uncovered several demonic texts which indicated that the pit the physical location where the demon Araddon had been imprisoned in Hell. The fact that his cell had become a garbage dump only served to further humiliate and infuriate the powerful demon trapped at the bottom of the pit. When Kane had discovered the demon’s location he had also deciphered the means through which to make contact with the foul creature. When Kane contacted Araddon the demon promised the warlock that if he was able to unleash him from his prison that he would lay waste to Earth and that he would free the rest of his fellow demons from Hell. Araddon informed Kane that once the gates to Hell had been opened that the necromancer would be given a position of power in Hell’s Army.

A shiver of excitement ran down Kane’s spine as he thought about ruling over a large section of the planet with a contingent of demons under his command. He turned around to see his disciples using planks of wood attached to wire to push down large portions of the grass that made up the field around the pit. The men were using the boards to make depressions in the grass. They were creating a series of mystical symbols around the massive hole in the same fashion that crop circle hoaxers had utilized to convince the public that aliens were leaving messages in cornfields. In this instance though, the symbols were not meaningless intertwined circles. These designs were powerful mystical symbols that when combined with the proper incantation would free Araddon from his subterranean prison.

Kane stared at his men, and in his mind he desired nothing more than to scream at them to hurry and complete the task but he knew that it was essential that they created the symbols with complete accuracy. He took a deep breath and reminded himself that patience was an integral part to the success of his plan. Kane looked out over the Mediterranean where he could see the surface of the water rippling with movement. The demon worshipper smiled when he realized that the movement on the surface of the sea was thousands of fish swimming away from the shore. Kane nodded and said to himself, “The fish know that a great creature is coming. They sense the arrival of Araddon and they are fleeing the area. Let them flee. Soon there will be nowhere on Earth for the living to hide from the great Araddon.”

Kane was correct that the fish were fleeing the shores of Greece because they sensed a powerful creature approaching the shore. What Kane was unaware of though was the fish were fleeing because the creature they sensed was not coming from the pit but rather from the sea itself. While the fish did not sense the coming of the great evil known as Araddon, Gfantis the Prince of the Monsters, was aware that a great evil was soon to set foot on the Earth and that was something which he could not abide.

***

The sun reflected brightly off the bronze form of the mighty Talos as he flew through the skies of Greece. The colossal hero was able to see his snow covered target from miles away as he flew toward it. The peak of Mount Olympus stood high above the rest of the mountains around it and as Talos approached the fabled mountain he allowed the briefest glimmer of hope to enter into his bronze heart.

When he awoke to find himself underground he had no idea of who he was or where he had come from. He only knew that he sensed a great threat to the Earth and he felt compelled to fight against it. Since fighting off the alien invasion Talos pondered both his origin and his purpose. Given his resemblance to Talos of old and his desire to act as protector just as the mythical automaton did, the giant wondered if he was not the guardian of myth or that he had at least had some connection to the myth.

As Talos flew closer to Mount Olympus his eyes could see what his mind already knew, the top of Mount Olympus was nothing but rock and snow. The giant landed on top the mountain and he looked across it for any sign of the gods that myth had said once lived there. From what he had learned from Raptor and the other heroes, he did not expect to find anything physical on top of the mountain but he had hoped to find some kind of spiritual or metaphysical clue to his past. The giant sat down atop of the great mountain and he closed his bronze eyes as he pondered his very existence.

***

Kane watched as his men completed the last of the symbols that were required to free the demon. With the symbols in place, Kane reached into his robes and pulled out a book that was bound in human flesh and inked in blood. The demon worshipper turned to the page that he had previously marked and began to recite an incantation in a language that was known to few people on the planet. With each word that he spoke, his voice began to rise until its pitch became a hellish shriek. When the final word escaped his lips a gust of wind rushed up from behind Kane and flew down into the pit with such force that it nearly tossed the necromancer into the endless void. Kane fought to keep his balance as he stared down at the darkness below him. For several long seconds, nothing happened. Then suddenly, Kane thought he heard something akin to the sound of steel scraping against rock. He fell to his knees and leaned his head over the pit as a vicious wail echoed up from the bottomless cavern. As he peered into the darkness below him, Kane saw a huge red claw bury itself into the side of the wall. At the sight of the claw, Kane turned and ran away from the edge of the pit.

He ran several hundred feet before he stopped, turned around and fell to his knees. He watched as the red claw reached up out of the pit and placed itself on the edge of the massive hole. A second later he saw a two gargantuan black horns appear out of the tunnel. The horns sprouted from the side of a red human-like face in the same fashion that a bull’s horn’s protrude from its head. The demon opened its mouth to reveal several rows of serrated teeth. As Araddon continued to climb out of the pit more of his body came into view. The giant demon pulled himself out of the pit to reveal the heavily muscled arms and torso of a human male. Araddon’s upper body had the same red hue to it that his head possessed. The demon pulled his lower body out of the pit and Kane gasped when he saw the fur covered and cloven feet of a goat. Araddon wailed as he drew himself to his full 170 foot height. The demon threw his arms out at his sides and roared announcing his arrival to the world that he would soon lay waste to.

Still on his knees, Kane bent his head slightly and called out to the demon, “Master, it is I your humble servant Kane. I have freed you from your prison! Now reward me with the power and glory that you promised me.”

Araddon turned his head toward Kane and he spoke in a voice that sounded as if thousands of shards of glass were attached to the demon’s vocal chords. “As promised you shall have the power and glory that you seek as I absorb your soul and add it to my essence. There is no greater status that a human soul can attain than to join Araddon!”

Kane was shaking with fear and when he saw fire beginning to swirl in the demon’s mouth he started to scream, “No Master, I have fulfilled ….” The necromancer’s words were cut short as the hellfire from Araddon’s mouth incinerated him leaving only the accursed book and a pile of ash where Kane’s body had once stood. Kane’s followers watched as the essence of Kane’s soul emerged from the ashes and flew towards that towering nightmare that was Araddon. The terrified followers could actually hear Kane’s soul scream in pain as it was absorbed into the demon’s body. When Kane’s soul entered Araddon’s body he threw his head back and the look of a profound sense of contentment crept onto the demon’s face. It had been countless millennia since had had last experienced the ecstasy of absorbing a soul. Araddon pulled his head forward to see Kane’s followers fleeing from him. The demon laughed at their futile attempt to escape his wrath. The colossal horror took several steps forward and spewed his fiery breath upon them. Kane’s followers shared his grim fate as their bodies were incinerated and their souls were absorbed by Araddon. With Kane and his followers assimilated into his body, Kane looked toward the town that was a little over a mile to his left. The demon could sense the thousands of humans living there and he hungered for their souls. The demon wailed as he began lumbering toward the collected souls he would soon reap.

Talos was sitting atop Mount Olympus when he was literally knocked onto his back as a sense of impending doom from a source of pure evil overwhelmed him. The bronze guardian had never felt a source of evil as powerful as the presence he now detected. The evil was near the sea and Talos looked in that direction before leaping off the top of Mount Olympus and flying toward this threat. Talos could sense the fear of thousands of people who saw the great evil coming toward them. The giant lowered his head and increased his speed creating a sonic boom as he shattered the sound barrier. The clouds became a blur as the giant continued to increase his speed. Then ahead of him he could see a dark shape with large horns walking toward a town. Talos’ entire body shook as he felt the malevolent energy emanating from the creature. Talos flew over the city of screaming and panicked people as he spread his arms out in front of him. He drove his shoulder into Araddon’s midsection at a five times the speed of sound.

Araddon slammed into the ground and skidded for several hundred feet before coming to a stop. Talos quickly jumped on top of the fallen demon. The hero grabbed one of Araddon’s horns in his left hand while using his right fist to repeatedly punch the demon in the jaw. Despite the blows that Talos was delivering to the demon, Araddon slowly stood up. The demon absorbed one more punch to the face before backhanding Talos across the chest and knocking the hero away from him.

Araddon hit Talos with such force that the hero was knocked to the ground. Araddon lifted his cloven foot to stomp on the giant but Talos moved with speed and agility that the demon was unable to match. Talos rolled out of the way of the stomp, leapt to his feet, and quickly delivered a thrust kick to Araddon’s chest that pushed the demon back. The bronze giant pressed his attack with a snap kick to the demon’s jaw that snapped it shut and two quick jabs to his snout that rocked Araddon’s head.

Angered at the hero’s persistence, Araddon stepped forward and struck Talos with a roundhouse punch that was so powerful it sent Talos flying the air. The blow was so powerful, that it sent the bronze giant splashing down in to the surf of the Mediterranean Sea. Talos lifted himself out of the water to see Araddon walking toward him. The Demon stopped a few hundred feet short of the water’s edge where he smiled at Talos, “You are the Bronze Guardian that my brother demons spoke of. The one who led the heroes and monsters of the past against the Unspeakable One a millennia ago. It was my understanding that the Unspeakable One trapped you beneath the earth during your battle with him.” The demon smiled, “No matter, I shall slay you myself and then collect this world’s souls as my own!”

Talos was caught off guard by the fact that the demon seemed to know some of his history. As much as Talos wanted to learn about his past he pushed the thought aside and focused on the threat posed by the demon. The hero was about to attack Araddon once again when he felt a powerful presence quickly approaching him from the sea. Talos turned around to see a huge swell of water glowing yellow with energy heading directly for him. Gfantis exploded from the water as sunlight cascaded out of his body. The Prince of the Monsters roared at Araddon while the crescent horn atop of his head began to glow as bright as the sun itself. A second later an arching beam of energy shot out from the crescent horn and struck Araddon across his chest. The blast caused Araddon to roar in pain and back up several steps.

Gfantis looked over toward Talos. The hero could sense that the powerful and potentially dangerous Gfantis was currently here to combat Araddon. Talos simply nodded to the kaiju who roared again and then began walking toward Araddon. The bronze giant assumed that the kaiju understood that he would assist him in has battle against the demon and Talos started walking toward Araddon as well.

Araddon shook off Gfantis’s blast then he howled in anger at the monster and the hero who dared to oppose his will. The demon opened his mouth and spewed a wall of hellfire at his two opponents. The ethereal blast caused the sea water it struck to immediately turn to steam while the flames that engulfed Talos and Gfantis caused them pain like they had never experienced before.

Gfantis roared in pain as every nerve ending in his body was assaulted by the mystical fire while Talos was in complete agony. Talos knew virtually nothing about himself. He had no idea if he was a living being, a mystical artifact, or an artificial intelligence. As he experienced the agony of being doused in hellfire Talos was able to answer one question about himself. Whatever he was, Talos was now sure that he possessed a soul because he could feel it burning. Talos fell to his knees in torment as Araddon continued to douse him in hellfire.

The pain that Gfantis was experiencing was quickly pushed aside at the anger that he felt toward this foul creature that had not only invaded his home but had hurt him. Despite the scorching heat of the hellfire blast, Gfantis roared in defiance at Araddon and began walking toward him. Araddon’s eyes widened in disbelief as Gfantis trudged toward him through the torrent of hellfire. Araddon opened his mouth wider and allowed more hellfire to engulf the kaiju but Gfantis continued to press through it. When Gfantis was only a few steps away from Araddon the mighty kaiju spun around and used his tail to strike the demon across the face cutting off the barrage of mystic flames.

Gfantis’s tail strike staggered Araddon causing the demon to back up several steps. Gfantis moved closer to the demon and delivered a claw strike to the hellion’s face. The Price of the Monster’s then grabbed Araddon by the shoulders and with one heave tossed the demon to the ground. With his opponent downed, Gfantis turned his back to Araddon and lifted his tail into the air. Gfantis roared and brought his tail crashing down across Araddon’s chest with such force that the entire ground shook. The kaiju repeated the move over and over again in hopes of beating the demon to death.

Talos forced his body to stand after the torture it had endured from the hellfire. When the hero regained his feet he was shocked to see that Gfantis was physically dominating Araddon. Talos had thought that either he or Gargantasaurus was the most powerful being on the planet but as he watched the Prince of the Monster’s continually strike Araddon with his tail, the bronze warrior began to wonder if Gfantis truly held the claim to being the most powerful creature on Earth. Talos’s thoughts were put on hold when Araddon’s hand shot up and grabbed Gfantis’s tail. The hell lord moved like lighting as he stood up, pulled Gfantis’s tail taut, and yanked on the appendage with such force that it lifted Gfantis off of his feet and sent the kaiju flying through the air. The golden monster slammed into the ground and rolled to a stop several hundred feet short of the town that Araddon had planned to attack.

The Demon began walking in the direction of both Gfantis and the town when he was struck from behind by a blast of energy. Araddon turned around to see Talos holding his arms in front of him in the shape of an X. When the hero pulled his arms apart a bright yellow X composed of an unknown form of energy streaked through the air and struck Araddon.

Araddon sneered at Talos, “Do you still think that your pathetic powers are capable of stopping me?” Hellfire began to build in the demon’s mouth and at the sight of it Talos flew at Araddon. Hellfire once more exploded from the demon’s mouth but Talos flew above the burst of ethereal flames. When the giant was over the demon he reached down and grabbed the foul creature by its horns. Talos then shifted his momentum so that he landed directly behind Araddon and as he brought his arms forward he flipped the demon over his back and sent him flying through the air. Araddon came crashing down next to the spot where he had incinerated Kane. It was at that point, that Talos saw the evil book which Kane had used to free Araddon. The hero could feel the power coming from the book and he somehow knew that if he was able to force Araddon back into the pit that he could use the power of the book to lock the demon in hell once more. When Talos saw Araddon starting to stand up he flew at the demon feet first hitting him in the chest and forcing the horror closer to the pit from whence he had escaped.

Gfantis pulled himself up from the ground. The kaiju shook his head and then stood up. He looked toward the battling Talos and Araddon and when he saw Talos trying to force the demon back into the pit Gfantis understood what he needed to do in order to defeat the horror that threatened his world. The Prince of the Monster’s roared then he began walking toward Araddon once more.

Talos continued to deliver a salvo of kicks and punches to Araddon and with each blow he forced the demon closer to the edge of the pit. The hell lord quickly realized what the hero was trying do to. As Talos was preparing to throw a punch Araddon lowered his horned head and charged the giant. A loud clang echoed across the sky as Araddon’s horns struck Talos’s bronze body. The blow knocked Talos to the ground. He looked up to see an enraged Araddon screaming at him, “I shall never return to Hell! I shall lay waste to this planet and absorb all of its souls! With the power the souls will give me, I shall be more powerful than any of my brother elder demons! I shall enslave them as well! Even …”

Araddon’s ravings were cut short when a blast from Gfantis’s crescent horn struck him in the face. The demon was still reeling from the blast when Gfantis latched his powerful jaws around the demon’s throat. Gfantis pulled Araddon’s head toward the ground then like a gargantuan crocodile that had trapped its prey Gfantis started to roll. Talos stood up to see the Gfantis and Araddon rolling across the field with Gfantis’s jaws still latched on to the demon’s neck. When Araddon saw that they were rolling toward the hell pit the demon began fighting with renewed ferocity in an attempt to break the kaiju’s grip but Gfantis’s jaws were totally unyielding. With one final roll, Gfantis threw both himself and Araddon into the pit. Talos ran over to the edge of the pit where he was able to see a brief glimpse of the monster and the demon still locked in battle before they faded into the seemingly never ending darkness of the pit.

A moment later the bronze giant watched as an orange hellfire and the yellow streaks that were Gfantis’s crescent beam pierced the darkness of the pit. From the roars and howls that echoed up from the darkness, Talos knew that the two monsters were continuing their battle in the bowels of Hell itself.

Talos quickly ran to where he had seen the accursed book, picked it up, then returned to the edge of the pit. The lights and sounds of the battle raging in hell confirmed that Gfantis was still alive and fighting Araddon in the underworld. For a moment, Talos considered what he should do. He was unsure if Gfantis would be able to defeat Araddon on his own and if that was the case then he needed to seal the pit now before Araddon was able to slay the kaiju and escape.

Talos was also unsure if he sealed the pit and Gfantis was able to defeat Araddon if the seal would trap the kaiju in Hell forever. Several months ago Talos would not have hesitated to trap both Gfantis and Araddon in Hell. Having one less monster and demon roaming the planet would have been a victory by any standard. Still, Talos was not sure that Gfantis was truly a threat to the planet and the people on it. When Gfantis had arrived the kaiju did nothing but attack Araddon. Talos even suspected Gfantis knew he was potentially sacrificing himself when he pulled the demon into the pit. Talos was torn as to how he could trap such a seemingly noble creature in the darkest part of Hell itself.

As a blast of hellfire made its way up from the pit Talos quickly decided that he needed to trap Araddon while he still had the chance. The giant closed his huge fist around the book. He could feel its dark power surging through him. Without even opening the book, Talos was able to locate the spell that he required to reseal the Hell Mouth. Talos looked toward the pit and he recited and incantation in a language that was long forgotten by the human race. When he finished the incantation he opened his fist and a bolt of green energy shot out from the book and cascaded over the pit. Talos instinctively could sense that the pit had been resealed. He quickly destroyed the markings around the pit that Kane’s men had used to free Araddon. He then turned toward the sea and threw the book deep into the heart of it beyond the reaches of mortal men.

Talos heard a roar from the pit and he turned to see another yellow blast from Gfantis’s crescent beam light up the darkness below him. Gfantis was still alive and he was still battling Araddon. Talos decided that he would not leave the monster to face the demon in Hell alone. The bronze giant flew into the air and dove at the pit only to bounce off the mystical barrier that he placed upon it. Whatever Talos was the seal he had placed over the pit prevented him from crossing as well. He peered down into the pit where he could both see and hear that the battle continued to rage on. Talos decided that whatever happened, he would not leave the side of the pit until battle was over. It was all that he could do for the mighty Gfantis.

Like a massive sentry, Talos stood over the entrance of the pit as day turned to night and still the battle continued to be fought with an unbelievable ferocity. It was not until roughly an hour after nightfall that the sounds of the war beneath him finally subsided. Talos looked down into the pit only to see a blinding light coming up from the darkness. Talos stepped away from the edge of the pit and he watched in awe as a bloody Gfantis pulled himself out of the pit with seemingly no ill effects from the seal that covered it. The kaiju looked toward Talos then he unleashed a roar which proclaimed his victory over the demon. When the roar ended Gfantis turned and began lumbering back to the sea.

Talos shook his head in disbelief at the power of the Gfantis. The kaiju had battled one of the most powerful demons in existence in his own domain and defeated him. Talos nodded to the kaiju as he walked by him out of respect of the kaiju’s power and courage. The bronze giant watched Gfantis as he entered the sea and disappeared below the waves.

With the threat of Araddon eliminated and Gfantis safely returned to the sea, Talos took to the sky to continue his never ending battle against evil and to continue his quest to discover his identity.

The End

GFANTIS VS KING KOMODO

Story by Matthew Dennion

Art by John Opal

 

Author’s Note: A very special thank you to Todd Tennant and Mike Bogue for allowing us to use their monster King Komodo and his accompanying characters in the second of our Gfantis vs. Guest Monster series. You can follow Todd and Mike on their respective Facebook pages:

 

Mike: https://www.facebook.com/mike.bogue.71?fref=pb&hc_location=friends_tab

Todd: https://www.facebook.com/todd.tennant.71.

 

King Komodo’s first set of adventures Tales of King Komodo can be found online at http://roberthood.net/daikaijuantho/unnatural_history/kingkomodo/tales-of-KK-101.html. (Or in G-FAN #83 to 87. See our back issues department! – J.D.)

 

This story takes place after the conclusion of Tales of King Komodo.

 

 

The Arctic Ocean

1973

 

A pod of Narwhals scattered as the kaiju glided through the cold waters of the Arctic Ocean. His massive body was as unaffected by the freezing temperatures of the water as it was by the scalding heat inside of a volcano. The monster’s crescent horn pierced the surface of the water as he came closer to shore. A dragon-like head rose above sea level and focused its eyes on the frozen tundra of Siberia. The monster would one day be labeled Gfantis by humans, but as of yet he was unknown to mankind. The landscape was ideal Gfantis’ needs. At this time of year, the sun would be in the sky for nearly an entire month. The light from the sky would also be reflected off of the perpetually iced over landscape creating the perfect situation for Gfantis’s solar powered body to absorb all of the sunlight it required for the next several months.

Gfantis lumbered ashore and headed for a mountain that dominated the landscape. He positioned himself in such a way that his body would catch as much sunlight as possible both from the sun above and from the reflection off the side of the mountain. With his body placed in the optimal position, he lay down on the snow. By selecting remote areas to charge himself, the beast avoided detection by humans, and he intended to keep it that way. Gfantis closed his eyes and prepared for a month long rest.

Roughly fifty miles to the north of the area where Gfantis had made landfall, a small fishing vessel fought to maintain its course through rough seas. The deck of the fishing ship was struck by a series of icy cold waves that rolled across its stern. The sailors on deck were both wet and freezing. Furthermore, there was not a single fish to be found onboard the ship. Despite the lack of fish and the horrible conditions, not a single man complained. There were no complaints because these men were not fisherman, but rather they were highly trained soldiers for the United States Navy. They were currently engaged in a top secret mission that would bring the Cold War to an end. With the thought of ending the communist threat on their minds, the crew persevered through the difficult conditions.

Inside the ship’s cabin, two men sat across from each other. One man was Teddy Tyson. He sat in a chair with much more on his mind than the rain and cold. Teddy had a special gift. His mind was able to connect with the minds of animals. In the cases of most creatures, he was able to use his will power to overcome the animals and control their actions. Teddy’s thoughts were currently focused on a creature swimming through the frigid waters thirty fathoms below the ship. The creature to which Teddy was sending his thoughts was much more than a mere animal. It was a kaiju, and his name was King Komodo!

Teddy could not so much control King Komodo as use the power of suggestion. He had found that the best way to influence King Komodo was to subtly mix his suggestions with King Komodo’s memories. In a mission such as this, where he wanted King Komodo enraged and ready to inflict damage on a target, Teddy had found that it was necessary to access the most vivid memories of King Komodo’s past battles. With this in mind, Teddy replayed the memories of King Komodo’s battles that he had witnessed firsthand, thus enhancing the monster’s memories of the battles with his own.

King Komodo had started life as a massive Komodo dragon, until one day fallout from an atomic weapons test had cascaded down onto his island. The radiation mutated the creature into a towering green and yellow bipedal kaiju. King Komodo had grown to a height well over three hundred feet. His forelegs had changed into powerful arms that ended in massive claws. Three sets of rigid blue spikes ran from the top of his head to the tip of his tail. The spikes themselves were connected by a thick membrane of yellow skin. His gargantuan legs ended in powerful feet with massive spikes protruding from them.

In addition to his incredible size and power, the radiation had endowed King Komodo with a unique ability that the media had dubbed his “Atomic Loogie.” King Komodo was able to ignite the mucus in his throat and then spit it out in a blazing fireball. After his transformation, King Komodo had ruled over of an island of other mutated monsters. The beast defeated every creature that dared to challenge his reign.

That was until sixteen years ago, when King Komodo finally encountered a challenge that even he was unable to overcome. Teddy and his adoptive father, Sam Tanner, had traveled to the island. When they were attacked by a gargantuan crustacean, Teddy had used his telepathic ability to summon King Komodo. The reptile arrived and quickly slew the crustacean. The monster then went to attack the campsite, but was rendered unconscious by a combination of Teddy’s mental powers and a barrage of gas grenades.

Tanner transported King Komodo to the American Southwest, where he put the monster on display with several other kaiju he had captured. King Komodo quickly escaped from captivity and began to rampage through a nearby town. Teddy himself would have been killed by the monster had he not used his telepathic ability to direct a gigantic yeti, known as Snowball, to battle King Komodo. The two beasts were engaged in a battle with each other, as well as with the military. Suddenly, an earthquake opened a fissure beneath them, they fell into it. The world at large was under the impression that both King Komodo and Snowball had been killed when they had tumbled into the earth, but that was far from the truth.

As Teddy replayed these memories in the monster’s mind, the man sitting across from him extinguished a cigarette. Then he calmly reached into his coat pocket, pulled out another cigarette, lit it, and placed it between his lips. The man had known Teddy for nearly twenty years, and after all of that time, Teddy still did not know the man’s name or title. When King Komodo and Snowball had been swallowed up by the earthquake, it was the Smoking Man who had them captured and taken to a research facility known only as Area 51.The kaiju remained there with other monsters and extraterrestrials that the Smoking Man had captured. The Smoking Man found Teddy, and then made him a generous offer, combined with a disturbing threat, that convinced Teddy to work with him at Area 51, honing his skills to influence monsters.

For years Teddy had improved his abilities, training for this day, the day when he would send King Komodo marching from the most remote section of the Soviet Union into Moscow itself. King Komodo would utterly destroy Moscow, and then rampage through the rest of Russia. The Soviets would respond by using their military in a vain attempt to stop the monster. King Komodo would crush the Soviet army along with the majority of their cities. The monster would cause the damage of half a dozen atomic bombs without the radioactive fallout, and more importantly, without anything to connect the damage to the United States. From the Soviets’ perspective, it would seem that the kaiju simply appeared from some unexplored region of the world and then attacked them. Teddy and his monster would single handedly end the communist threat in the span of a few short weeks.

The Smoking Man removed the cigarette from his mouth and spoke in a measured tone. “The ship cannot go much closer to land without drawing undue attention from the Russians. If you send the beast ashore at this point, will you still be able to influence his actions?”

Sweat poured down Teddy’s face as he continued to focus his thoughts on King Komodo. “Trying to influence him is like maintaining a tensed muscle. It wears me out very quickly. I will not be able to influence his thoughts much longer, but he is sufficiently enraged, and the thought of Moscow is firmly planted in his mind. When the Soviets engage him, his natural aggressive tendencies will take over, and he will continue his march through Russia without my influence.”

The Smoking Man nodded. “Very well. Will you still be capable of maintaining contact with his mind and tracking his progress through his thoughts?”

Teddy rubbed his forehead. “The bond between our minds has grown stronger over the years. I would guess that as long as we are within 500 miles of King Komodo, I will still able to see into his mind.”

The Smoking Man took a long drag from his cigarette. “Excellent. Send him ashore.”

Teddy placed his fingers on his temples and focused his thoughts to the point that his body began to shake. The ship itself was tossed to the left and nearly capsized when King Komodo swam underneath it. A swell of water formed on the surface of the ocean and began to move toward the frozen shoreline. Then a massive reptilian head emerged from the swell. Seconds later, the gargantuan monster emerged from the ocean. The memories Teddy had stirred in King Komodo’s mind had driven his already aggressive temperament to the breaking point. The monster glared at the mountains in front of him and unleashed a roar that echoed across the tundra, sending birds fleeing into the sky and animals darting into the forest.

King Komodo stepped out of the water and onto the frozen land. His enraged mind was determined to find something that he could destroy. A sensation inside of his brain was directing him in a southward direction toward a large city. The beast’s primitive mind could not comprehend where the sensation was coming from, nor did he care. He only knew that he needed to destroy something, and that the sensation was guiding him to a suitable target. King Komodo roared once more and then began to march directly across the frozen wasteland.

For roughly an hour, King Komodo marched across the tundra, and then he suddenly stopped in his tracks. The leviathan lifted his head into the air and sniffed it. His eyes opened wide as a tidal wave of anger rushed into his mind. The backlash of the rush of emotion reached Teddy back on the ship. He fell to the floor and screamed in pain, while simultaneously King Komodo roared defiantly at a mountain in the distance. King Komodo then changed his direction and started heading toward the mountain.

The Smoking Man bent down and helped Teddy back into his chair. “What happened?”

Teddy shook his head. “I can’t believe it. I haven’t felt this level of anger and determination in King Komodo since I first called him to battle a gigantic crab. There is something else nearby, something that he sees as a challenge to his dominance.”

The Smoking Man leaned forward. “What could he possibly see as a threat to his dominance? Unless …” The Smoking Man stopped in the middle of his thought, as if he was afraid to utter it.

Teddy nodded. “Another kaiju!”

The Smoking Man threw his hands into the air. “That’s impossible! None of the intelligence we have collected suggests that the Russians have a kaiju!”

Toddy shrugged. “They may not have a kaiju. This might be an unknown rogue creature.”

The Smoking Man shook his head in anger. “Everything we know about the kaiju suggests that they are somehow drawn to each other. King Komodo’s very presence might well have drawn in this other creature.” The Smoking Man sighed. “Call him back. We can’t risk losing him in a battle to the death with some unknown creature. This mission is officially over.”

Teddy closed his eyes and focused on King Komodo. He exerted his mental abilities to the point that his nose and eyes began to bleed. Teddy’s body slumped down in exhaustion. “It’s no use. He senses the other creature, and he is determined to destroy it. There is nothing we can do. King Komodo is either going to kill this creature, or die trying.”

Gfantis was sleeping on the ice when he felt an impact tremor under his legs. The beast slowly opened his eyes, thinking that it was merely an earthquake. When the tremor was followed by two more impacts at regular intervals, a surge of adrenaline ran through the monster’s body. He shot up into his bipedal stance, bringing his body to its full height. The tremors could only signify that another creature was close by. Gfantis roared a challenge at the invader, and began walking toward the epicenter of the incoming tremors.

The sun shone brightly in the sky, and a polar wind whipped across the landscape as Gfantis lumbered around a massive snowbank that had accumulated at the base of a mountain. When he had cleared the snowbank, Gfantis’ trek came to halt as he beheld the awesome figure of King Komodo standing before him. The two kaiju stared at each other in silence for a moment and then, in unison, they roared and charged each other.

Gfantis was the lighter and the quicker of the two monsters. He lashed out at his adversary, striking King Komodo with his right claw, followed by his left, and then his right again, snapping King Komodo’s head from side to side with each blow. King Komodo took a half step backwards and then brought his shoulder crashing into Gfantis’s chest with all of his strength and weight behind it. The shoulder charge knocked Gfantis to the ground. King Komodo reached down, grabbed Gfantis by his leg and throat, and then in a display of unimaginable strength, he lifted the golden dragon over his head. King Komodo roared at Gfantis, and then slammed him to the ground. When Gfantis hit the ground, he immediately rolled his body away from King Komodo. King Komodo’s attempt to crush Gfantis’ head missed, and the monster’s foot stomped into the ground.

Gfantis sprang to his feet, and in a show of surprising speed for a creature of his size, he charged King Komodo once more. When he reached him, Gfantis bit into King Komodo’s left forearm. King Komodo’s head reared back as he howled in pain; blood spurted from his forearm. Gfantis pressed his attack by slicing his left claw across King Komodo’s thigh and using his right arm to strike at King Komodo’s midsection.

King Komodo pulled the arm Gfantis was biting across his body, causing Gfantis to lose his balance. As Gfantis’ momentum pulled him forward, King Komodo’s jaws shot down and latched onto the back of Gfantis’s neck. King Komodo’s mouth filled with blood as he shook Gfantis neck in an attempt to break it.

Instead of trying to pull away from the attack, Gfantis thrust his head upwards and into the bite, causing King Komodo to loosen his grip. Gfantis then reached up with both of his claws and dug them into the base of King Komodo’s skull. Gfantis pulled down hard and rolled his right shoulder into the body of his adversary. King Komodo’s chest was gouged by Gfantis’s spikes as his body was dragged across them, prior to crashing into the ground.

Gfantis looked down on his grounded opponent and moved in for the kill. King Komodo quickly lifted his chest of the ground, but he kept his torso low, using his tail to counter balance his weight rather than support it. His flexible spine allowed his upper body to nearly bend in half as he whipped his head around and sank his fangs into Gfantis’s right thigh and hip. King Komodo used his grip to give a massive yank, causing Gfantis to tumble to the ground.

Gfantis attempted to lift himself up as King Komodo spun around and sent his club-like tail smashing into Gfantis’ face. King Komodo attempted to strike Gfantis with his tail again, but the Prince of the Monsters was ready for the attack. He grabbed King Komodo’s tail as it swung toward him. Gfantis shifted his grip to the base of King Komodo’s tail, lifted King Komodo into the air, and brought him crashing back into the ground. He repeated the move three times before King Komodo was able to dig his claws into the ice and pull free of Gfantis’ grip.

King Komodo turned to face Gfantis, recoiled his neck, and then let loose a flaming ball of mucus in the form of his Atomic Loogie. The burning mucus exploded in Gfantis’ face, temporarily blinding him. King Komodo charged Gfantis, spitting several more Atomic Loogie’s at the monster as he advanced. Fire and smoke engulfed Gfantis’ body as King Komodo delivered a viscious kick to his midsection. Gfantis doubled over, and King Komodo brought his fist crashing down into the back of Gfantis’s head.

Gfantis shook off the blow, lifted his head, and in the same motion struck King Komodo across the face with his right claw. Lowering his head, Gfantis drove his crescent horn into King Komodo’s shoulder. King Komodo howled in pain and, in a fit of rage, grabbed Gfantis by the neck. He squeezed and pushed back on it, slowly extracting Gfantis’ horn from his shoulder, causing blood to spray out of it like a geyser. The heavier King Komodo continued to strangle Gfantis and force him backwards. When they had reached the base of the mountain, King Komodo threw Gfantis into the rock wall with enough force to shatter a skyscraper.

King Komodo looked at his downed opponent to see the crescent horn atop of Gfantis’s head glowing. A second later, a white hot beam of light scorched King Komodo across his body. Gfantis rose to his feet and fired his Crescent Beam once more at the Lizard King.

King Komodo roared in defiance at Gfantis and then spat another Atomic Loogie at the beast. Despite having Gfantis’ beam burning his body, King Komodo struggled toward Gfantis and struck him in the jaw with an uppercut, causing the kaiju’s Crescent Beam to fire wildly into the top of the ice mountain. The beam sliced through a cliff near the top of the mountain. The severed cliff remained still for a moment, and then it began to slowly lurch forward.

At the base of the mountain, the two monsters continued to exchange blows. Neither one of them was aware of the impending doom above their heads. As the kaiju continued their battle, the cliff above them gave way and started an avalanche down the side of the mountain. Even as the ice and snow began to bury them, the two monsters continued to claw at each other.

Back on the ship Teddy opened his eyes. “The battle is done. King Komodo’s mind has gone dormant, as if he’s unconscious. As far as I can tell, both creatures are now buried beneath the ice. It’s over. We don’t have a snowball’s chance in hell of getting him out of there. If we tried to send in a recovery team, the Russian’s would see it coming a mile away. All of these years preparing for this mission, and it’s an utter failure.”

The Smoking Man quickly regained his composure as he lit another cigarette. “A failure? No one could have foreseen another kajiu showing up in the drop zone. I this see more as a temporary setback and additional opportunity. We don’t need a snowball’s chance in hell to get King Komodo out of there. We just need to take a chance with Snowball in Siberia to walk away with two monsters. The Russian’s would notice a large team excavating for days on end in Siberia, but would they notice a one day trip by a 300 foot Yeti?”

Teddy gasped. “You want to bring Snowball here too?”

The Smoking Man smiled. “He is built for this terrain. We can have him brought here by ship in a couple of weeks. He can dig King Komodo and the other creature out of the ice and then carry them back to a transport ship.” He inhaled deeply from his cigarette, “Just imagine the future. You will have had more time to develop your telepathic connection with King Komodo, we can bring Snowball with us next time as well, and we can add another kaiju to our stable, one that was able to battle King Komodo to a standstill! With multiple kaiju attacking different cities, the Russians won’t have a prayer of stopping them.”

Two weeks later, on a massive freighter posing as a Japanese whaling ship just off the coast of Siberia, Teddy was in telepathic contact with Snowball as the Yeti trudged across the frozen wasteland. The Smoking Man stood next to Teddy, demanding updates on the monster’s progress. When Snowball reached the area of the avalanche, Teddy persuaded him to start digging. After digging for nearly half an hour, Snowball had found King Komodo. The monster was in a state of suspended animation, but still very much alive. Snowball placed the kaiju on the ground to thaw in the sun, and then he began digging once more. Snowball had cleared a few more tons of ice when the drift he was digging into suddenly collapsed in on itself. Teddy once more suggested to Snowball that he keep digging. The Yeti moved more ice to find a massive tunnel leading into the mountain.

Back on the ship, Teddy turned to the Smoking Man. “The other monster, the one that fought King Komodo, he seems to have burrowed into the mountain. He could be anywhere by now.”

The Smoking Man cursed under his breath and then lit a cigarette. “That is a shame, but it is no real loss to us. Have Snowball bring King Komodo back the ship. We are going to return home and then generate two new missions. The first will be to develop another entry point to send both King Komodo and Snowball into Russia. The second mission will be to find and capture that other kaiju. We can’t afford to have a wildcard with that kind of power running loose in the world, or worse, falling into the hands of the Soviets! That creature will be ours, and when we have it, there will be only one superpower on this planet.”

The End

Gfantis vs. Raiju

Story by Matthew Dennion

Art by Scott Caffrey

Author’s Note – The third installment of our Gfantis vs “Guest Monster” series features K. H. Koehler’s Raiju from her novel Raiju: A Kaiju Hunter Novel. We would like to extend a very special thank you to Mrs. Koehler for letting G-fan use Raiju and proudly announce that her publishing company Severed Books has an entire line of kaiju books now available! Hopefully some of those beasts will face Gfantis somewhere down the line as well!

New York City

Present Day

It would be hard to imagine a better day than today. The sun is shining bright in the sky, it’s warm but not hot maybe about 75 degrees, and I am riding my bike through New York City. The girl of my dreams, my girlfriend Aimi, has her arms wrapped around me as we skirt through the city. Every time we come to a red light she pulls my head around to sneak in a kiss. I am enjoying one of those kisses when I think that’s it has been going on for a long time. It’s not that I am complaining about it. I just don’t want to clog up traffic in the middle of the largest city in the world. I pull away from Aimi and look at the traffic light to see that it is still red. At that point, I notice that there is no traffic moving across the intersection which never happens in New York. I look to a side street and see that all of the cars are sitting there not moving. I check the sidewalk to see that all of the people there are frozen in time as well. There are several birds stuck in the air, not flying just staying still. Even Aimi seems to be frozen. Her beautiful face is still in the exact same place that it was when we were kissing.

From the corner of my eye, I see a tall, beautiful, Asian woman with stunning red eyes, and long blood red finger nails walking from the sidewalk in my direction. She is wearing a full body length kimono with flames on it that appear to be dancing around her body as she moves. Finally, everything sinks in. For a guy with a genius level IQ sometimes I can be pretty dense when it comes to stuff like this. This day is so perfect because it is a dream. With me though, dreams are never just dreams. My name is Kevin Takahashi and I am a keeper, which is a name for wizard who has the power to call fourth a kami. The kami are ancient gods of immense size and power beyond imagination. Long ago many of them were rulers of the world but they were eventually trapped deep within the earth and now they can only be called fourth by a keeper such as me. Each keeper can only call fourth their designated kami and I am lucky enough to call fourth Raiju the kami of fire and the most powerful of all of the ancient gods!

When Raiju needs to contact me she takes the form of the woman walking toward me. While this may sound kind of creepy it is way less intimidating then her true form. So I appreciate this approach. She stops in front of my bike and as usual she disposes with the small talk and gets right to the point, “Master, soon we shall be called into battle again. A powerful threat is quickly approaching.”

My heart drops. The last time a threat approached it came in the form of Qilin. Qilin was also a kami that had been tainted by man’s nature. He had degenerated from his true form into something out a Lovecraft novel. I was able to call on Raiju and she destroyed Qilin but not before a large chunk of the city was demolished.

I take a deep breath and ask the obvious question, “Is there another kami coming to New York?” The kami and their keepers are drawn to each other by some mystical force. Since the incident with Qilin I have had the thought in the back of my head that Raiju and I might draw another kami into the city, putting thousands of life at risks.

Raiju shakes her head, “No master, it is not a kami that approaches but rather a dragon. A dragon of the sun. This beast is powerful. He has slain two kami in the recent past. He approaches from the sea and he seeks to take the sun’s power that the humans are harvesting near the river.”

I give her an odd look, “Why would a dragon of the sun come from sea? And what do you mean he wants the sun’s power that the humans have taken?”

Raiju smiles answering only part of one of one my questions, “The ways of dragons are often strange and paradoxical. One may live in the sea and look to the sun for its sustenance.” Raiju starts walking away from me with a final comment, “Call me when the dragon arrives master. It has been many centuries since I have battled a dragon. I will stop this kami slayer. The remaining kami in the world are mine to slay and I will not allow a dragon to deny me of this pleasure!”

I wake up in bed to find my pillow soaked with sweat. I reach over to the table next to my bed, grab a cigarette, flick my fingers causing a small flame to appear on them and then I use it to ignite my cigarette. Being the keeper of the kami of fire also gives me the ability to create and control fire from within my body. I still have not figured out exactly what I can do with this ability but I can sure as heck use it to light a cigarette. When I get myself calmed down a little bit I decide that I had better try to get ahead of this problem. Through a combination of not knowing what Raiju was and who I really was combined with self-doubt caused the Qilin situation to evolve into the disaster it eventually became.

I pull out my Smartphone and do a search for New York City and the power of the sun down by the river. To my surprise I get a hit about a new solar power plant being developed at the river front where numerous buildings were destroyed leaving the area open and empty. Given that the city lost several power plants during the Qilin affair it is no surprise that the city was trying anything to get a fresh power supply up and running. A solar power plant seemed as a good idea as any.

I figure that I have decoded at least part of Raiju’s cryptic message. Next I search for the dragon of the sun. Mainly I find references to Quetzequatl a winged serpent god associated with Native American tribes in Mexico. Raiju was specific in stating that the approaching monster was not a kami but specifically a dragon. So I cross Quetzequal off of my list of potential monsters. I scroll down further in my search and come across a site for a tabloid magazine.

Now normally I would think that these magazines were reserved for crazy people but given the recent events of my life who I am judge what’s crazy? So I click on the link. It takes me to a website about a monster called Gfantis. According to the report, Gfantis is a massive dinosaur like kaiju that the government has been keeping tabs on. Gfantis is described as being roughly 55 meters long, with yellow skin, a series of sharp irregular spikes running down its back, and a massive crescent horn on the top of its head. The monster apparently is solar powered as its body is able to directly absorb the sun’s light. At this point in the article I am still thinking this part of some writer’s imagination until I read the next paragraph.

Gfantis was reported to have battled and slain the Mesopatamian dragon god Tiamat as well as the Norse serpent god Jormungandr. Again a few years ago I would have laughed at the idea of a seven headed dragon and a snake so big it could wrap around the entire earth being killed by a solar powered dino-monster. Like I said that was then and this is now. Given all that Raiju had said in my dream, the evidence suggested that this Gfantis was real and that he was going to attack the new solar plant.

Then something I had not considered enters my mind. Tiamat and Jormungandr were two of the most powerful gods in their respective mythologies. I mean Jormungandr fought Thor himself to a draw on several occasions. I don’t know how well comics and movies relate to the actually god but if there was even a hint of truth in them then Thor was no pushover. He is like Superman powerful. Raiju was one of if not the most powerful gods in the pantheon she descended from but given the track record of Gfantis was even she powerful enough to stop him? A sensation I have not experienced since I met Raiju reintroduces itself to me as cold shiver runs down my spine. I finish my cigarette and slowly go back to sleep.

I wake up the next day and hear my dad freaking out! Ever since my mother was killed back in the first kaiju attack on San Francisco my dad has been watching the Kaiju News Network or KNN nonstop. He is convinced that he can protect us from another attack by evacuating the area as soon as possible. I hear him scream, “Kevin, another kaiju! Hurry we have to get to the subway!” As he is running up the stairs to my room I pull a Spider-Man by climbing out of my window, grabbing my bike, and heading off. Sorry dad but if there is anything I can do stop another disaster I am going to do it.

I tune the radio on my bike to the KNN to hear a reporter yelling frantically, “A kaiju is swimming up the East River and entering the city. The military is aware of the situation and is mobilizing. They are asking that citizens use the subway system to evacuate the area as quickly as possible. The transit system is sending extra trains to the area to help with the evacuation.”

I turn the corner and push my bike to its top speed when I see the river in the distance. The reporter is quite for a moment and then he comes back on the air confirming what I already knew, “We are getting reports that the monster is reptilian in appearance with yellow scales and large spikes protruding from its back. The kaiju matches the description of the monster Gfantis whose exploits have been recorded in a well-known tabloid magazine!”

I am listening to the report and still heading for the river when I see what appears to be a jagged mountain range moving slowly up the river. I have never seen a barge like that before so I make the pretty safe assumption that I have found Gfantis. I reach the river and start riding parallel to monster while he continues to swim up the river. The creature is massive. If it wanted to it looks like it could destroy the city and the military would be able to do little about it. I don’t know what the monster’s intentions are but after Qilin I am not going to wait around until it starts eating people.

Gfantis continues swimming until he reaches the site of the new solar plant. The monster then stands on its hind legs reaching its full height. When I see its head reach into the sky, I am amazed that it even fit in the river. I look up at a waterfall raining down on me as Gfantis shakes his body sending the water still on it raining down over everything at the water’s edge. The monster looks down at the newly installed solar panels and roars. The sound is so loud that it shatters windows for five blocks. I put my hands over my ears to keep my eardrums from following suit.

The kaiju then begins to wade ashore. Now I understand that Gfantis is supposedly solar powered and that he may just destroy the solar plant, absorb whatever energy he wants, and then leave. But really when does a kaiju surgically destroy one thing in a city and then leave? Answer never. Gfantis crushes the first solar panel and I realize that unless I want that to happen to a city full of people that it is time to call Raiju. A sword composed of fire appears in my hand. I swing it in the air creating the sign of Raiju out of flame. I hold the sword above my head and prepare to drive it into the ground and call fourth the kami of fire. Then I hesitate as the thought crossed my mind that Gfantis has already killed two gods. What if it kills Raiju as well? Aside from the devastation Gfantis could bring to the city, deep down I am not sure that I am prepared to lose Raiju myself. I hear laughter in my head followed by Raiju’s voice, “Your concern amuses me master, but it is unwarranted. Release me! I shall destroy the dragon who would slay gods!”

The area we are in is largely abandon and I figure that if the two creatures are to battle then this is the best place for them to do it. I let loose a primordial scream and then I plunge the sword into the ground. A pillar of fire shoots up into the clouds. The heat from the pillar vaporizes the water on the street that had fallen off of Gfantis’s body. I look up and see Gfantis staring at the pillar. His eyes are wide open with a confused look upon them.

The pillar of fire condenses as Raiju’s true form begins to take shape. No matter how many times I see Raiju her appearance still astonishes me. She is massive, nearly the size of Gfantis himself. She is bipedal with her arms and legs ending in raptor like claws. Her body looks like a cross between a Chinese dragon and a lion. She is covered in a mix of fur, feathers, and fire. Her head is wreathed by long curling horns that extend down her back and to the tip of her tail. Her face has the same Chinese dragon lion mix to it that her body does, but it is her eyes that captivate me. She has deep blue human eyes and that is her most terrifying aspect.

A snake like tongue emerges from her mouth and runs across her lips. She smiles as she looks at Gfantis. I look into her eyes and I can see that she is already relishing the battle that is about to come. I can hear her in mind, “You are correct master. I have been looking forward to this confrontation.” She then roars and leaps at Gfantis.

Gfantis is unprepared for Raiju’s feline like speed and agility. She crashes into him and sends him toppling over to the far side of the river. She uses her body to pin Gfantis to the ground and then she begins to use her claws to tear apart the dragon’s face.

Each time that Raiju penetrates Gfantis’s skin flames sprout out from the wounds. The flaming wounds are one of the many attacks that make Raiju a formidable opponent.

Gfantis smashes his right claw into Raiju’s face sending her flying off of him and into a nearby building that I am thankful is abandoned when it collapses on top of Raiju. Gfantis lumbers toward the destroyed building when it explodes outward as Raiju leaps from the rubble. She lands in front of Gfantis and flames streak across Gfantis’s body as Rajiu slashes across his torso first with her right claw and then with her left. My stomach turns when I see a massive letter X of flames burning in Gfantis’s chest.

Gfantis roars in pain, lifts his claw above his head, and then brings it down on Raiju’s neck. The force of the blow drives her into the ground as the street shatters around the outline of her body. Raiju is lying in the crater created by her body and I cringe as Gfantis lifts up his foot and brings it crashing down on Raiju’s back. The ground shakes and my heart skips a beat as the monster stomps on her three more times. With each stomp, he sends blades of fire into the air that once composed part of Raiju’s body. I am starting fear that I am seeing the end of Raiju when she rolls out of the way of the fifth stomp and toward the leg Gfantis is using balance himself with. She digs her claws into his calf and then stands up pulling Gfantis’s leg with her and sending him toppling onto his back.

Despite myself I jump into the air and shout, “Yes!” Maybe it is not the best time to cheer like I am watching a pro wrestling match but there really is not much else I can do assist Raiju. Gfantis is still on the ground when Raiju bends down and opens her mouth letting out a wave a white hot flames that engulf Gfantis’s entire body. The smell of asphalt and concrete burning assaults my nose as the ground beneath Gfantis liquefies. I think this battle is just about wrapped up when Gfantis’s tail swings out of the inferno, strikes Raiju on the side, and knocks her into the river.

A cloud of steam explodes into the air as Raiju’s flaming body makes contact with the water. All of the sudden I feel like I am in Stephen King’s novel The Mist. There are huge monsters right in front of me and all I can see is wall of white. The steam begins to clear a little and I can see Raiju standing up in the middle of the river. I see here spring forward and then I hear Gfantis roar in what sounds like pain.

The steam clears a little more and I can see Raiju with her claws latched onto Gfantis shoulders and her teeth buried in his neck. Gfantis looks down at Raiju and I can just feel the hatred in his eyes. He roars once more but this is a different roar than before. If the last roar signified pain then this much deeper roar clearly shows that Gfantis is angry. He grabs Raiju by the top of her head and her left shoulder. He then throws her down onto the field of solar panels crushing the majority of them. As Raiju attempts to stand up he strikes her across the jaw with his claw and then follows with a kick to her midsection.

Gfantis looms over Raiju but before he can strike her again she opens her mouth and unleashes another inferno into the monster’s face. The attack does not cause much damage to Gfantis but it disorients him long enough for Raiju to put some distance between the two of them.

Raiju steps back and I can hear her in my head, “Help me master. This dragon is a juggernaut! No matter what I do I cannot seem to harm him.” I know what Raiju is asking of me. She needs me to give her a power boost but given how nothing has hurt Gfantis so far I do not know if giving Raiju an additional power boost will help or not. Gfantis begins to close in on Raiju again. I focus on studying him as he is walking. I look for any kind of weak point that we can use against him. I see his tail swing back and crush one of the few remaining solar panels. When this happens I notice that the spikes on his tail and back flicker. As his spikes flicker Gfantis stops moving forward for a second and looks back at his tail. He seems almost calm for a moment.

Then a thought occurs to me. It is a little crazy but I am desperate and I need something. I think that maybe this is the one monster was going to make a surgical attack on the city. I mean people often thought the worst of me. Maybe I had wrongly done the same to Gfantis? Gfantis had avoided the rest of the city and swam up the river solely to the power plant at which point I directed Raiju to attack him. I almost slap myself thinking that a debate over the stereotyping of monsters could wait for another time but then again I don’t have another plan on back up.

I send my thoughts out to the kami, “Raiju, listen I am going to give you boost but I don’t really want you to use it to attack Gfantis.”

Raiju screams in my mind, “Master, I can defeat this dragon!”

I cut her off, “This is not about who we can and cannot beat this about saving lives! Now listen to me. I want you to jump into the middle of the river where I will give you an extra charge with my chi. I then want you to occasionally strike Gfantis and then jump backward out of his range. You seem to be more agile than he is so I think you can do that. I want you to keep him interested enough in continuing to battle you until you are clear of the city and he has an open path back to the ocean. When we get there we will finish this battle.”

Raiju almost purrs in my head, “Very well master, I will lead him out of the city and then I will end this battle!” Raiju leaps back into the middle of the river and Gfantis follows her. When she is in the water I create another fire sword between my hands. I then channel all of my strength, thoughts and emotions into it. The flaming blade doubles in size at which point I aim the sword at Raiju and send all of that power flowing into her. The flames around her body begin to crackle and double in size. When Gfantis reaches the center of the river she leaps at him and slashes her claws across his face. He swings back at her but Raiju nimbly leaps out of his range. Gfantis roars a challenge at her and then begins to walk forward.

I use all of my remaining strength to climb back onto my bike. The monsters may only be taking a few steps down river but when you are the size of a building each step covers several city blocks. This pattern continues for a very long 20 minutes before we are clear of the city. From this spot, there is nothing between the ocean and Gfantis but marshlands, fields, and forest. My bike is running on empty when I tell Raiju the final part of my plan, “Raiju, I want you to get behind Gfantis, grab onto his spikes, and then send all of your power into them. Then I want you to disappear.”

Raiju is not overly fond of this plan but she complies with the request. Raiju moves toward Gfantis. The kaiju takes a swing at her which she ducks under and then slides behind him. She then grabs the spikes on his back and I watch as they begin glow like a sun going supernova. This is the part of the plan that I am going purely on hope that it works. Gfantis is solar powered so he gets his energy from the sun, but the law of conservation of energy states that energy can neither be created nor destroyed only changed from form to another. As Raiju sends her energy into Gfantis I am pray that his spikes are capable of changing hellfire into solar energy.

The glow from the spikes continues to increase in intensity until it becomes blinding forcing me to close my eyes. When the light subsides I open my eyes to see the spikes on Gfantis’s back absorbing the last of the energy. He quickly turns from side to side looking for Raiju but she is nowhere to be found. Gfantis roars triumphantly and then turns and begins heading back toward the Atlantic Ocean with only a few sparsely populated towns on the way that can be easily evacuated. He will return to the ocean with minimal damage to property and hopefully no loss of life.

I am watching him walk off into the distance when I hear Raiju in my mind, “A wise plan master, giving the monster what he wanted and then providing him with a clear path back to the sea. You have saved many lives. Rest assured though master, that I could have defeated the dragon if you had let the battle continue.”

I smile and say with complete honesty, “I know that you could have beaten him Raiju, but right now I am beat. I need to get home and get the standard I need to be more responsible in a crisis speech from my dad before I can finally get some sleep.”

The End

GFANTIS VS CHIMERA

Story by Matthew Dennion

Art by Dave Coleman

 

Author’s note: This entry in the “Gfantis vs” Series features the kaiju Chimera from the novel Chimera Scourge of the Gods: A Kaiju Tale. The novel is published by Severed Press Books, and it was written by me in response to the readers of G-FAN magazine. During the course of writing the “Gfantis vs Guest Monster” series, many readers emailed me suggesting that I take a shot at a kaiju novel of my own. So, with your encouragement, I wrote Chimera, and it has now been picked up by Severed Press and can be found both on their website and on amazon.com. I never would have thought that I could have written and published my own kaiju novel, but with your support, this is literally a dream come true for me. To the readers of G-FAN (and J.D.) I offer my sincerest thanks in helping me to reach this dream! I hope this story, and the novel, do G-fans proud!

Chimera Scourge of the Gods focuses on Chimera, a kaiju that is a sperm whale/gorilla/lion hybrid, created by the U.S. government to stop the ancient gods (Olympian, Asgardian, Mesopotamian) and the monsters of their mythologies from destroying mankind. The following story takes place at the conclusion of the novel.

 

Virginia

Luke Davis woke up and stared at his wife Melissa. After all they had been through over the past six months, nothing made him happier than to see her lying there next to him. He kissed her and she smiled. “That was a nice way to wake up, but go brush your teeth before you kiss me again. Your morning breath smells worse than Chimera.”

Luke laughed. “Okay then, maybe tomorrow I’ll have Chimera stick his head in the window and give you a kiss.”

Melissa smiled and threw her pillow at him. “Just get out of here and go train your monster, so he’s ready to save the world again if more gods decided to attack us.”

Luke tossed the pillow back to her, saluted, and then trotted out of the room. He quickly pulled on his jeans and t-shirt. He loved that he was able to dress in such an informal manner. Most Board Certified Behavior Analysts were stuck with the suit and tie wardrobe, but then again, most BCBAs were not using Applied Behavior Analysis techniques to train a giant monster to protect the world.

Luke jumped into his topless jeep, drove out of the military base where he and his family lived, and headed into the forest that surrounded the base and served as Chimera’s sanctuary. The area where Chimera rested was about half an hour’s drive. Once the day’s training had been completed, Luke would have the pleasure of rewarding Chimera’s hard work by taking him to the beach to enjoy a couple of hours in the ocean. After having led Chimera in the fight against the ancient gods and their monsters, most of the world saw Luke as a hero, but he still saw himself as a teacher, and any good teacher enjoyed rewarding his students for a job well done. For Chimera, there was nothing the kaiju enjoyed more than swimming in the ocean, and Luke wanted desperately to take him there. Hearing a roar echo across the forest, Luke knew that Chimera was awake and waiting for him. He pressed down on the gas and smiled. “Take it easy buddy. I’m coming for you.”

The research lab inside the base was alive with activity. Today was an important day, the day the research team was going to see if they could activate one of the artifacts they had scavenged from their war with the gods. The base commander, General Sam Parsons, was standing next to his mythology specialist Diana Cain. They stood on an observation deck, looking through a thick glass window at the laboratory below them. Parson’s eyes were fixed on the golden chariot that was sitting in the middle of the laboratory. He continued to stare at the chariot as he spoke to Diana. “So what exactly is this thing supposed to do again?”

Diana shrugged. “‘That thing’ is Apollo’s Chariot. Legend says that it contains the very power of the sun itself. It could be a huge step toward addressing the energy crisis.” Diana took a deep breath and collected her thoughts. “Chimera battled the Olympians at the top of Mount Olympus, so no one actually saw the battle. Given how the chariot was thrown to the side of the Olympians Courtyard, we assume that it was used during the struggle with Chimera, but we can’t say for sure what it can do. The Olympians obviously employed it as some kind of a weapon. Since recovering the chariot, we’ve prevented it from being exposed to any sunlight, and during that time, it’s been dormant. According to the mythology, Apollo accessed its power by flying it next to the sun. Our current operating hypothesis is that exposing it to sunlight will activate whatever powers the chariot has.”

Parsons kept his eyes fixed on the chariot as various scientists connected wires and meters to it. One of the scientists looked up to Parsons and gestured toward the ceiling. Parsons gave the go ahead to the research team, indicating that they were clear to open up the skylight and expose the chariot to sunlight. The skylight opened, and as the first ray of sunlight reached the chariot, the room was immediately bathed in a blinding white light as Apollo’s Chariot began to emanate sunlight throughout the laboratory.

Deep within the Atlantic Ocean, off the coast of Virginia, a colossal saurian head stirred on the ocean floor. Gfantis’ eyes snapped open as his body sensed a massive surge of the solar energy that fed him pulsating nearby. The kaiju lifted his body off of the ocean floor and swam in the direction of the energy source. To Gfantis, the power source felt as if the sun itself had landed on Earth. He sensed that, whatever the energy source was, it was capable of sustaining him from now until the end of time.

The head of the Prince of the Monsters broke the surface of the water and he shifted his gaze in the direction of the power source; the emanations were originating on land. Gfantis knew that moving ashore meant dealing with humans. He growled. Gfantis was determined to take possession of the power source, and if the humans attempted to keep it from him, he would deal with them. He roared a challenge, and then began swimming toward the distant shore.

Luke had been driving for about fifteen minutes when he suddenly saw a “living mountain” rise up out the forest in front of him. No matter how many times he saw saw Chimera, Luke was still awed by the sight of the kaiju. It stood about 250 feet tall and measured nearly 300 hundred feet long. Chimera had the powerful torso and arms of gorilla with the agile explosive legs of a lion. He also possessed the razor sharp claws of a lion on both his hands and his feet. The long thick tail of the sperm whale extended out of his back and ended in a large fluke. The kaiju also had the elongated face of a sperm-whale, but accentuated by the feline eyes, canine teeth, and the majestic mane of a lion around his neck. The mane was the only hair on the kaiju; the rest of Chimera’s body was covered in the thick, rubbery, gray skin of a sperm whale.

Chimera was a walking juggernaut. To look at the monster was to understand how physically powerful he truly was. Luke was well aware, however, that Chimera’s raw strength was the least of his attributes. The monster was extremely intelligent. Luke had tested the kaiju and found that he was at least as intelligent as a two year old human. Luke could hear Diana quoting one of her monster movies with, “Chimera is a thinking monster. His skull is at least ten times that of a gorilla.” Diana always laughed to herself at that, but Luke never got the joke, especially since Chimera had the reinforced skull of sperm whale. The spermaceti inside Chimera’s head allowed it to act like a battering ram. Luke had seen Chimera uses his face to smash through the side of building as if it were paper.

Powerful as it was, Chimera’s battering ram head was not the most devastating weapon resulting from his sperm whale DNA. He also had the ability to fire a condensed sonar blast, powerful enough to temporarily disable an opponent’s central nervous system.

Chimera looked down toward Luke and uttered the friendly hoots of a happy gorilla. Luke reached into the back of his jeep and pulled out one of the 100 pound beef, bamboo, and squid cubes that he fed Chimera as a reward during their training sessions. Luke tossed Chimera a freebie cube and the monster happily scooped it up and swallowed it whole. Putting a megaphone to his lips, Luke called out, “Good morning Chimera! Are you ready to get to work?” Chimera nodded in reply, and Luke smiled. “Good. After we’re done working, we can go for a swim in the ocean today!” Chimera began to jump up and down in excitement as Luke thought to himself that this was going to be a good day.

 

Parsons and Diana were blinded by the intense sunlight emanating from Apollo’s Chariot. Eyes shut, Parsons reached out and felt around the control panel until he was able to locate the intercom. Pressing down on the switch, he yelled, “This is General Parsons. I am ordering that the skylight be closed immediately!”

A voice screamed back from one of the microphones on the laboratory floor. “The skylight is closed. It seems that the chariot is now generating its own energy. It’s giving off pure sunlight, and we don’t know how long it will take to power down!”

Diana was shielding her eyes as she called out to Parsons, “We should evacuate the building. We’re not sure what’s going to happen with that thing.”

Parsons punched the switch on the intercom once more. “Alright everyone, we are going to evacuate the building, but I want all possible systems working to collect data on what’s going on with the that chariot.” Closing the intercom, he and Diana made their way out of the building.

 

Five miles out to sea from the base, the USS Argos was engaging in its daily training run. The ship was the largest and most powerful vessel in the US Navy, a ship that had been specifically created to transport Chimera around the planet. Armed to the teeth, the Argos was capable of reaching speeds on the water far beyond that of a ship half of its size.

Sergeant Gardner was manning the sonar monitor when it suddenly registered a massive incoming object. Hurredly, Gardner called over to the ship’s captain. “Sir, I have a large unidentified object coming in fast. Is Chimera in the water at this time?”

The captain checked his watch. “Chimera is not scheduled to enter the ocean for two more hours. Are you sure we’re looking at something the size of Chimera?”

“Yes sir! Radar confirms that the object is over 55 meters long and closing fast toward our starboard side!”

The captain immediately put the ship on red alert and called all hands on deck. Outwardy calm, he feared what every other sailor aboard the Argos did. During the war with the gods, they had been attacked by several daikaiju, dispatched by the gods to destroy them. Had it not been for Chimera, the mighty Argos could have been sunk by either the Ophiotaurus or the shark god Asag.

The captain ran to the bridge of the ship and looked out toward its starboard side. He could see a huge dinosaur-like head with a crescent shaped horn atop it cutting through the water like a bizarre shark fin. Behind the head of the creature, the captain could see long jagged spikes sticking out the monster’s back. He whispered the word kaiju under his breath. Grabbing the intercom, the captain barked his orders across the ship. “All hands, this is the captain speaking. I want all our weapons systems and cameras targeting that kaiju. Let the cameras run for ten seconds, then send the feed directly to General Parsons back at base. After the ten second interval, open fire with everything we’ve got!”

The sailors of the Argos snapped into action. No sooner had the video been streamed, the deck of the Argos lit up as cannons, missiles, and torpedoes unloaded onto Gfantis.

The Prince of the Monsters swam through the hellish barrage, then dove under the surface and swam directly underneath the ship. The monster quickly emerged on the other side of the Argos and continued on toward his destination.

Turning to his communications officer, the captain demanded, “Did the video footage make it to General Parsons?” Receiving an affirmative reply, the captain nodded and took one more look at Gfantis as the kaiju swam ever closer to shore. “Good. He needs to know what’s coming.”

 

Parsons and Diana were standing outside the building that housed Apollo’s Chariot. Though power had been shut down to the entire building, blindingly bright light still cascaded out of every window. Parsons was staring quietly at the illuminated building when an alert flashed across his phone. He turned it on to see the footage from the Argos. Parsons tapped Diana on the shoulder and handed his phone over to her. “Do you have any idea what kind of mythological creature that is?”

Diana re-ran the footage three times. “I’ve seen that monster before, but I can’t recall what mythology it belongs too. We know that the Olympians, Mesopotamian gods, and the Asgardians no longer have access to Earth. Maybe the creature is from Egyptian mythology. I’ll get working on right away. Where is this footage from?”

Parsons sighed, “It’s then less five miles offshore from this location. The monster seems to be heading directly for the base. If this is another sect of gods planning to eradicate humans, this monster could be their version of a preemptive strike.” He took his phone back from Diana. “Find out what you can about this creature and get back to me A.S.A.P. In the meantime, I’ll call Luke. If this creature wants a fight with Chimera, then he’ll get his wish!”

Fifteen minutes later, Luke was flooring his jeep in order to stay ahead of Chimera as they headed toward the sea. Chimera was walking at a slow pace, but the stride length of a 250 foot kaiju had him moving at about 70 mph. Parsons had informed Luke that a new kaiju had appeared, and that it seemed to be heading straight for the base where Luke’s family lived. Though the base was being evacuated of non-essential personnel, which meant that his wife and kids were being moved away from the danger, Luke knew full well that they would never reach a safe distance before the kaiju made landfall.

Diana had been unable to identify the monster or to attribute it to any particular sect of gods, but Luke didn’t care who the beast was or where it came from. If the recent war had taught him anything it was that, outside of Chimera, all kaiju were creatures determined to kill as many humans as possible, and there was no way that he was going to let that thing come anywhere near his family.

Luke took a sharp right turn toward the beach when Chimera came to an abrupt stop behind him. Luke slowed down and turned around to see Chimera sniffing the air. Shaking his massive head from side to side, Chimera growled as he looked out over the ocean. Luke realized that Chimera could smell the incoming monster. Luke picked up his megaphone and screamed, “Chimera, follow me!” He then stepped on the gas and continued for the beach. He quickly glanced up into his rearview at that massive form of Chimera and said, “It’s alright buddy. You’ll get your shot at whatever that thing is soon enough.”

A minute later, Luke drove his jeep onto the beach and pulled the vehicle to a stop. Chimera lumbered up behind him, and the two of them stood staring across the ocean as a huge swell of water, with a crescent shaped horn jutting out of it, rushed toward the beach. The swell continued forward as Gfantis stood still on all four legs and glared at Chimera. Water poured off of Gfantis’s body as the monster stood up on his hind legs, reared back, and then roared at the creature who was standing between him and the new source of sunlight that his body craved.

Chimera glanced at Luke as he raised his megaphone to his mouth and screamed, “Chimera, attack!” The monster beat his chest and roared. Placing his front hands on the ground, he charged at Gfantis like an enraged bull gorilla.

 

The base was alive with activity. Soldiers were arming themselves in preparation for a battle against the incoming kaiju should the creature defeat Chimera. Thousands of civilians were being taken away in trucks and buses. The building that held Apollo’s Chariot was giving off a light so bright that it was literally shining through the walls of the structure. Parsons was doing his best to coordinate all the operations taking place, as Diana had run into a nearby building where she continued to shift through her tablet, looking for a description of any creature in mythology that matched the kaiju who was currently battling Chimera. She searched through Native American, Chinese, Japanese, and African mythology, but she was unable to locate anything that matched the description of the creature. Diana cursed and ran her fingers over the tablet’s screen in frustration, causing her search results to scroll down.

Diana saw a link at the bottom of the screen that caught her eye, a link to the website of tabloid reporter Sly Lyson. Diana clicked on the link and found an article with a description for a monster called Gfantis. From the description of the creature, Diana was sure that Gfantis was the kaiju currently heading to a confrontation with Chimera. Her eyes grew wide when she came to the section of the article that suggested Gfantis’ origin. Diana ran to the base’s command center in search of General Parson’s. If the report was true, then she might have found a way to solve the problem of Gfantis and Apollo’s Chariot at the same time.

She found Parsons in the command center. He was watching the video feed of Gfantis wading ashore and preparing to engage Chimera. Diana ran up to Parsons. “The monster’s name is Gfantis! His exploits have been covered by a tabloid magazine, and up until now I had just figured that he was a creation of the tabloid.” She handed her tablet to Parsons so that he could look at the information she had found.

As Parsons reviewed the article, Diana described her plan. “The article suggests that the creature is solar powered. If so, that would explain why he headed for the base at the same time we activated the chariot. The sunlight the chariot is giving off is like the sign at an all-you-can-eat buffet to Gfantis. I think if we give Gfantis the chariot, he’d be able to siphon off the extra energy it’s producing. And by bringing the chariot to him, we’ll avoid the destruction he’ll cause trying to get to the base.”

Parsons picked up his radio. “This is Parsons. I need a helicopter with a tow cable and an extraction team over to the laboratory right now.” Parsons turned to Diana. “Let’s just pray that Chimera can hold Gfantis at the beach until we can get the chariot to them.”

 

Gfantis was standing in the surf as Chimera pounded toward him. The speed of the hybrid caught Gfantis off guard. Chimera drove his spermaceti-reinforced head into Gfantis’s chest with the force of an aircraft carrier moving at full speed. The blow sent Gfantis tumbling backward into the water. No sooner had Gfantis hit the water than Chimera jumped onto the reptilian kaiju’s chest. Chimera roared, and then brought one fist after the other crashing down into Gfantis face. Chimera landed five blows in quick succession before Gfantis was able to clamp his jaws around Chimera’s right forearm. Chimera roared in pain as Gfantis regained his footing. The golden dragon shook his head from side to side, using his teeth like a saw to cut deep into Chimera’s arm, while simultaneously using his claws to slash across the hybrid’s face.

Blood poured from Chimera’s forearm and face as Gfantis wrapped his arms around Chimera’s torso. With his grip secure, Gfantis tossed Chimera hard into the shallow water of the shoreline. Chimera attempted to stand, only to have Gfantis deliver a vicious kick to his midsection. The blow rocked Chimera’s body and caused him to roll onto his back. The hybrid looked up to see the terrifying jaws of Gfantis reaching down for his throat.

In desperation, Chimera unleashed a narrowly focused sonar blast. The attack immediately disrupted Gfantis’s sensory organs. Gfantis felt as if the entire world was spinning around him. The monster was disoriented as blood oozed out of his eyes, ears, and nostrils. The attack had momentarily robbed Gfantis of all sensory input, and as a result, the Prince of the Monsters had no idea where he was in relation to his opponent.

Gfantis staggered backward as Chimera spun around and used his club like tail to smash into Gfantis’ ribcage. The saurian beast spun and fell face first into the surf. A wave rolled over Gfantis’s face as Chimera reached out and grabbed the kaiju’s tail. Chimera pulled with all his strength, using Gfantis’ own tail to whip him from the surf and onto the beach.

Luke shifted his jeep into reverse as the gargantuan form of Gfantis was soaring through sky directly at him. Luke didn’t even bother using his review mirror as he backed up at full speed. Gfantis was sliding across the beach directly at him, and the danger of being crushed by the kaiju was greater than the danger of running over anything that was behind him. Luke gasped as the colossal form of Gfantis finally came to a stop, but though he had outdistanced the monster, the wave of displaced sand caused by the creature’s impact was still coming toward him. Luke watched helplessly through his windshield as the wave of sand covered both him and his jeep.

Gfantis snorted, clearing the sand and blood from his nostrils. He then turned to the ocean and saw Chimera wading out of the surf and coming toward him. The crescent horn at the top of Gfantis’s head began to glow bright yellow as he slowly rose. Gfantis swung his head in the direction of Chimera and unleashed the full power of the sun on Chimera in the form of his crescent beam. The beam scorched Chimera across his chest, causing the hybrid to roar in pain. Gfantis moved toward Chimera, firing a second blast that seared the skin on Chimera’s knee and thigh.

When Gfantis reached Chimera, he struck the god-slayer with a series of blows to his elongated face. Chimera absorbed the punishment and responded with an uppercut to Gfantis’s lower jaw, causing the kaiju’s teeth to snap shut. Chimera then once more drove his powerful head into Gfantis’s chest, causing Gfantis to stagger backwards. Gfantis regained his footing, roared at Chimera in defiance, and renewed his attack.

That sand in which Luke was buried was both crushing him and suffocating him at the same time. He knew that panicking would only make things worse, so despite the fear he felt, he tried to remain calm. He knew that the sand around him was loose, and trying to dig through it would cause him to become buried deeper. His only hope was to find the front windshield of the jeep, the highest point on the vehicle. From there, he would pull on the windshield and maybe by standing on top of it, he would be able to get his head and arms clear of the mound of sand. Luke forced his arms forward through the sand as it worked its way into his ears and nose. After what seemed like an eternity, he touched the windshield. Grabbing hold of the top, he pulled as hard as he could, pushing his feet against the floor of the jeep. He could his feel his body slowly lifting out of the sand and, much to his relief a moment later, his head broke the surface and he was finally able to breath. Using the windshield for support, he wriggled the rest of his body out, and then rolled off the newly formed dune and back onto the flat beach below it. He checked to make sure that his megaphone and radio were still hooked to his belt. Both items were covered in sand, but he was pretty sure they were still functional.

Luke shook his head and cleared the sand out of his ears to hear the brutal sounds of the battle between Chimera and Gfantis. The two kaiju were grappling with each other, looking as if they were engaged in some bizarre sumo wrestling match, with each monster attempting to throw the other to the ground. Luke watched in amazement as Gfantis overpowered Chimera, lifted the hybrid off his feet, and tossed him several hundred feet into the ocean. The crescent horn on top of Gfantis’ head began to glow as he prepared to fire his beam at Chimera the moment he resurfaced, but abruptly the Solar Monster turned and looked inland. The anger seemed to seep out of the kaiju, and his crescent horn slowly began to lose its glow.

Luke turned around to see a helicopter with a blinding light, as bright as the sun, suspended below it. Gfantis began slowly walking toward the helicopter when Luke’s radio came to life. “Luke, this is Diana. Gfantis is after Apollo’s Chariot. We are going to drop it onto the beach. We need you to direct Chimera to grab the chariot and swim out to sea with it. Once he is far enough away from land, have him release the chariot. We think Gfantis will absorb the energy it’s giving off, and then return to the bottom of the ocean.”

Chimera exploded out of the water and roared at Gfantis as Luke grabbed his radio. “How far out do you need Chimera to take the chariot?”

“A couple of miles should do the trick,” replied Diana. As she finished her thought, the helicopter dropped the chariot onto the beach.

Gfantis slowly approached the chariot. He was transfixed by the object as he stood over it, staring at the source of pure sunlight. A roar from behind him snapped Gfantis’ attention away from the chariot. Swinging around, he could see Chimera rising out of the water.

Chimera took a step forward and fired a narrowly focused sonar blast at Gfantis. Once more, the kaiju’s central nervous system was disrupted and Gfantis fell to the ground, his body shuddering with convulsions. Chimera was about to attack again when Luke ran up to him with his megaphone. “Chimera, pick up.” Luke pointed at the glowing chariot. He pointed to the ocean as he gave his next command. “Swim until it’s dark, and then let go!” Chimera nodded at Luke, then walked over to the chariot, picked it up, and headed out to sea.

Gfantis’s body was still shaking from the sonar attack; he watched helplessly as Chimera picked up the object of his desire and then headed out to sea with it. A moment later, Gfantis was able to regain his senses. The enraged kaiju stood up and roared at the departing Chimera. The crescent horn on top of Gfantis’s head glowed, and he fired a blast at Chimera that streaked over the hybrid’s head as it disappeared beneath the water. Gfantis fell to all fours and pursued Chimera back into the ocean, determined to the regain the source of energy from the monster that had stolen it.

In a cloud of sand, Diana’s helicopter landed on the beach, and Parsons and Diana leapt out. Diana ran over to Luke and embraced her friend. “Well, the first part of the plan is complete. Now we just need to hope that Chimera can lead Gfantis far enough out to sea that he is no longer an immediate danger.”

Luke looked out over the ocean with concern on his face. He had seen Chimera defeat monsters the likes of the Scylla and Fafnir. Even the thunder gods Zeus and Thor had fallen before Chimera, but Gfantis was by far the most powerful enemy that Chimera had faced so far. Chimera was more than just a monster to Luke; he was a friend. Luke was concerned that Chimera might finally have met a challenge that even he would be unable to overcome.

Gfantis could see Chimera ahead of him as the monster continued to swim away with the source of energy. Gfantis was keeping pace with the hybrid, but he seemed unable to gain any ground on Chimera. In an attempt to slow him down, Gfantis fired a crescent beam at the fleeing hybrid. The beam struck Chimera across the back, causing his body to shudder in pain. The attack succeed in momentarily halting Chimera’s progress, allowing Gfantis to close the gap between the two of them.

Chimera shook off the effects of the blast, then continued to swim farther out to sea. All of his instincts urged Chimera to turn around and meet Gfantis head on, but he had been conditioned to follow Luke’s commands. The hybrid continued to obey the last command that Luke had given him by swimming farther out to sea. The sun had set, and with each passing minute the twilight gathered. Chimera neared his goal of swimming until it was dark.

The pursuit continued with Gfantis slowly gaining on Chimera, each Crescent Blast distracting and slowing the hybrid beast. Gfantis had gained on Chimera to the point that the hybrid was only a few hundred feet in front of him, a distance just beyond his reach. One more blast across Chimera’s legs caused him to slow down for the brief second that it took Gfantis to reach out and dig his claws into Chimera’s thick tail. Gfantis pulled Chimera toward him and sank his fangs into the hybrid’s leg. Chimera unsheathed the lion claws from within his hands and he raked Gfantis across the face. The two monsters were in a frenzy as they bit and clawed at each other in the dark depths of the ocean.

During the heat of the battle, Chimera dropped the glowing chariot and it began to fall into the dark depths of the ocean. When Gfantis saw the chariot falling, he immediately dove after the glowing object and followed it the bottom of the ocean. Chimera watched his foe disappear into the darkness, then headed to the surface for a much needed breath of air. Once Chimera had reached the surface, he took a deep breath and then began swimming back toward Luke.

In the inky darkness of the ocean depths, Gfantis reached out and grabbed the glowing chariot. His entire body lit up as he absorbed the sunlight that the chariot was giving off. Within seconds, he had drained the chariot of all of its energy. With his power renewed, Gfantis dropped the chariot and turned to search for his foe. He roared at the darkness, daring Chimera to challenge him at the peak of his power. With no reply forthcoming, Gfantis was satisfied that his opponent had retreated. Satisfied, he swam off into the ocean.

Luke, Diana, and Parsons had waited on the beach for several hours to see if Chimera would return from his mission. The three of them were staring out over the ocean when they saw a huge swell of water coming directly at them. They stood up in anticipation of seeing which monster was about to make landfall. When Chimera surfaced, he roared and beat his chest in triumph. The three friends cheered. Luke quickly ran back to his buried jeep. He was determined to dig out one of Chimera’s food cubes to toss to him for a job well done.

Diana turned her attention to Parsons. “What about the chariot and Gfantis?”

Parsons scanned the ocean. “Most of the equipment that we attached to the chariot is still intact. The research team reports that the chariot stopped giving off energy a little over an hour ago. They also report that it is stationary on the bottom of the ocean. I think we can assume that Gfantis siphoned the energy from it, and then left it on the bottom. We should be able to have the Argos retrieve the chariot after nightfall, so that it won’t power up again until we’ve had a chance to better understand how it works.”

Parsons took a deep breath. “As for Gfantis, my gut tells me that he and Chimera will cross paths again in the future, and heaven helps us when that day comes.”

 

The End

Gfantis vs Legendary Beast Werewolf: In the Shadow of the ROCS

Story by Matthew Dennion

Art by Dave Coleman

Author’s note- This entry into the Gfantis vs Series features the kaiju ROC 2 and ROC 4 from the novel OPERATION R.O.C.: A Kaiju Thriller . The novel is published by Severed Press Books and it was written by me. The novel is my personal homage to Rodan. Operation ROC can be purchased on Amazon.com both in print and digital format.

Operation R.OC.: A Kaiju Thriller is a story in which terrorists have captured the world’s cryptids (Bigfoot, Loch Ness Monster, Lizardman. Mothman and many others) and turned them into kaiju. The US government creates four ROCS to respond to the threat. The ROCS are giant cybernetic birds with diamond coated steel feathers that they can fire and liquid nitrogen tanks in their necks that they can release as a freezing spray. The ROCS sync with individual pilots, who need to master their own emotions before they can master a ROC. This story takes place between chapters 26 and 27 of Operation R.O.C.

Wisconsin Lake Michigan Shoreline

The National Guard was stationed on the shoreline of the lake as they nervously awaited back up in the form of the cybernetic kaiju known as the ROCS. ROC 2 and ROC 4 were in Washington State where they were engaged in a battle with the giant Sasquatch who had been attacking cities up and down the coast. The ROCS had defeated several of the enlarged cryptids already but the Sasquatch was thought to be one of the most powerful kaiju at the disposal of the terrorist Rol-Hama. When the Sasquatch was located it was determined that both ROCS would be needed to combat the threat. They were no sooner flying to the West Coast than there were reports of a giant monster coming down from Canada and entering Lake Michigan. Reports on the creature were limited, but most of them described a golden dragon with large spikes on its back and a crescent shaped horn on top of its head. The brave men and women of the National Guard were ready with tanks, cannons, and high caliber machine guns, but they were well aware that man’s weapons had been useless thus far against Rol-Hama’s kaiju cryptids. Their only hope were the ROCS and many of the National Guard members secretly prayed that the ROCS would arrive before the kaiju emerged from the depths of the lake.

Deep within Lake Michigan, Gfantis swam in impatient circles. The monster had settled down in the North Pole and he was absorbing the sun’s power peacefully in the frozen tundra when he sensed that numerous new kaiju had suddenly appeared on Earth. Gfantis was a protector of the Earth and he instinctively knew that these new kaiju presented a direct threat to the planet. Gfantis had sensed that one of the new kaiju was relatively close to him and the golden dragon was determined to destroy this creature and then seek out the rest of the new kaiju before they caused irreparable damage to the planet. Gfantis was able to narrow down the new kaiju’s location to a rough geographic area but he was unable to pinpoint its exact location. It was almost as if the kaiju had somehow hidden itself from being detected. The Prince of the Monsters knew that the creature would emerge from its hiding place soon and attack the humans. When the beast revealed itself, Gfantis would leave the lake and attack the monster, but until that time the golden dragon would have to wait in the lake.

Elkhorn Wisconsin

Elkhorn High School had just let out and Stewart and Kristen both had roughly two hours before their parents were home from work. The young couple jumped in Stewart’s car and drove to the remote Bray Road. Bray road ran deep into the forest and it was seldom used by people both because of its remote location and the legend that surrounded it. Stewart pulled off to the side of the road and turned to Kristen with a smile on his face. Kristen sighed at him, “Is this really the best time for a make-out session? I mean you’ve seen the news. Giant monsters are attacking people all over the world. I heard that those giant birds the government has are fighting a Bigfoot right now.”

Stewart leaned in closer to his girlfriend, “If giant monsters are going to end the world than I say there is no better time to make out. I mean if we are all going to be killed by kaiju shouldn’t we make the most of our time?”

Kristen shrugged, “But on Bray Road! You know the legend about a werewolf that people have seen out here. What if the werewolf is one of the creatures that the terrorists have captured and turned into a giant?”

Stewart laughed, “Bigfoot and the Loch Ness Monster are one thing. They have some basis in science and history, but even the most enthusiastic cryptozoologist would tell you that werewolves are only in the movies.” He kissed Kristen on the neck, “Don’t worry Little Red Riding Hood. The only wolf that you have to fear out here is me.” Kristen laughed and kissed him back.

From within the tree line, a pair of feral canine eyes watched the couple. The gargantuan beast panted and drooled as he stared at the prey in front of him. The monster did not remember the last time that he eaten. He had some vague recollection of eating before he grew but since he had attained his new size his thoughts were focused on crouching low and staying hidden. Then finally, he felt a command enter his head to attack and feed.

The hungry beast stood up and howled at the sky above him. Stewart and Kristen both screamed in unison as they stared at a giant, bipedal, dark gray werewolf that was twice the size of the tallest trees in the forest. Stewart quickly put his car into gear and peeled off down the road. Stewart had just passed 80 mph’s when Kristen screamed at the sight of the giant werewolf running after them and quickly gaining ground. Within seconds, the werewolf caught up to the car. The kaiju reached down with his claw, picked up the vehicle, and tore the passenger side door off. The kaiju then shook the car over his opened jaws. Kristen reached out for Stewart. He grabbed onto her but their combined weight was too much for him and the young couple tumbled into the hungry jaws of the werewolf. The kaiju swallowed his prey whole and then he set off in the direction of the city of Chicago.

Lake Michigan

The National Guard kept its watch over the lake until the water near the shoreline began to churn. The soldiers quickly aimed their weapons at the disturbance as a saurian head topped by a crescent horn emerged from the water. At the sight of the kaiju, the soldiers immediately opened fire. Both the monster and the lake were lit up in explosions but despite the fury of the soldiers Gfantis waded out of the water as if their shells were nothing more than a gentle breeze. The monster walked through the massed weapons scattering them before him as he moved. Gfantis was unconcerned with the annoyance presented to him by the attacking humans. He could sense that the other kaiju he had been tracking had finally revealed itself. Gfantis could sense the direction that creature was headed. The monster roared in the direction of the city of Chicago and then he fell to all fours and stared walking toward the windy city.

The NEST Kansas

Lindsay Munroe and David Bixby sat in their recliners with their neuro-link helmets pulled over their heads and their hands interlocked. Each of the pilots was linked to a ROC. Munroe was linked to ROC 2 and Bixby to ROC 4. While the young pilots were linked with their ROCS they saw through the kaiju’s eyes and influenced its movements. When they were linked, the pilots also made sure that they were in constant physical contact with each other. The young lovers had recently realized that to better sync with their ROCS they had to master their ability to interact with other humans. Bixby and Munroe had recently formed a personal relationship and they found that building that relationship helped them to build their connections with the ROCS as well. Holding hands was a simple gesture but it helped the pilots to draw strength from each other. The pilots had just used their ROCS to battle a giant Sasquatch when they received instructions over their neuro-link.

Director of the CIA George Mackenzie had direct access to the pilots’ neuro-links. When he typed directions into his computer the text would appear directly across the ROC’s field of vision so that pilots could receive their orders.

New target acquired head toward Chicago at top speed. Information on targets is forth coming.

The pilots directed their ROCS to change their flight pattern to steer them toward Chicago and then they had the ROCS accelerate to Mach 7. They had just given the commands to their ROCS when they saw more information appear in their field of view.

Kaiju 1: Werewolf (Beast of Bray Road) – A bipedal creature with features of both a canine and a primate.

Descriptions – Witnesses describe the werewolf as dark grey in color with the torso of a primate but the legs, claws, and head of a wolf. The werewolf is reported to be extremely fast, agile, and powerful

Current data from attack – The monster stands at over 50 meters tall. It has ability to leap nearly a mile in one hop and it can run in speeds excess of 150 mphs. It has destroyed the town of Elkhorn Wisconsin and it is headed toward Chicago.

Kaiju 2 Gfantis – a reptilian kaiju of unknown origin.

Descriptions – Gfantis has appeared numerous times over the past several years and has battled other kaiju in remote locations. For the most part, his existence has been kept from the general public. Gfantis has the appearance of a golden dragon with spikes on his back and head. The creature also has a crescent shaped horn on top of his head from which he can fire a solar powered beam. The monster is capable of moving in both quadrupedal and bipedal stances.

Current data from attack – Gfantis stands at 55 meters tall. He is headed toward Chicago but at this time, we are unsure if he is under Rol-Hama’s control or acting on his own accord. Either way do not let that monster enter the city!

Bixby and Munroe internalized the information before them. Munroe looked at the current speed of the ROCS and she figured that they would be able to intercept the kaiju in about 15 minutes. Even at that speed, she was not sure if they would reach the kaiju before they entered the city. She squeezed Bixby’s hand and he squeezed it back. She knew that Bixby was thinking the same thing that she was. Rol-Hama’s cryptids had proven to be extremely powerful already and they had both read the classified reports on Gfantis. While the ROC pilots had always been prepared for the possibility of engaging Gfantis even before the appearance of Rol-Hama’s giant cryptids the thought of engaging the Prince of the Monsters was bone chilling. Bixby and Munroe had spent many late nights talking about Gfantis. Based on the reports about the kaiju, they wondered if even multiple ROCS would be able to defeat Gfantis. Now they were sending their ROCS into battle not only against Gfantis but a giant werewolf as well.

Once the ROCS were given the command by their piolets to fly to a destination the kaiju were capable of maintaining their course independently. Munroe took the opportunity to take her neuro-link helmet off and converse with Bixby. She pulled on Bixby’s hand to indicate to him that she needed to talk with him. Bixby took of his helmet and looked toward Munroe.

She spoke quickly, “When we get there you and ROC Four take the werewolf. ROC Two and I will take Gfantis.” Bixby nodded in reply. Munroe quickly kissed him and then they each reneged in their neuro-links.

The werewolf had reached the suburbs outside of Chicago. The monster could see the city standing before him only a few scant miles away. The beast sniffed the air and he could smell the countless people who lived in the city. In addition to the population of the city, he also caught the strong odor of a large reptile nearby. The werewolf turned in the direction of the smell to see the awesome site of Gfantis walking toward him on all fours. The werewolf lifted his head, howled into the sky, and then he sprinted toward Gfantis.

Gfantis lowered his head and charged at the giant werewolf. The monsters collided in the shadow of the Windy City. Gfantis attempted to gore the werewolf with his crescent horn but the nimble cryptid kept shifting his body so that the horn only scraped against his hairy side. The werewolf climbed onto top of Gfantis’s neck but he found that the kaiju’s spiked back prevented him from attacking his spine. Gfantis shifted his legs backwards so that werewolf slid in between the twin horns at the back of his head. Gfantis then thrust his head upward and flung the werewolf off of him.

The nimble cryptid landed on his feet and then he howled at the kaiju. Gfantis shifted his body into his bipedal stance then he unleashed an earthshaking roar at the werewolf. The werewolf leapt at Gfantis and the man-beast began tearing into The Prince of the Monsters’ with his claws and teeth. The ferocity of the werewolf’s attack caused Gfantis to back up a few steps. The werewolf slashed his claw across Gfantis’s face and then he sank his fangs deep into the monster’s throat. Gfantis roared in pain and then he wrapped his powerful arms around the werewolf. With one heave, Gfantis threw the werewolf to the ground. Blood spurted out of Gfantis’s neck but the monster ignored the wound and walked toward his downed opponent. Before Gfantis could reach the werewolf, the cryptid stood up and leapt at Gfantis. The kaiju caught the werewolf in his arms, lifted him high into the air, and then slammed him to the ground. The werewolf rolled away from Gfantis. Then he stood up and growled at his opponent.

The werewolf was about to leap at Gfantis again when the cryptid’s sensitive ears heard a high pitched sound coming his way. The monster turned his head toward the disturbance. Gfantis was perplexed by his opponent’s actions but then he too heard the sound. Gfantis looked to the sky behind the werewolf to see ROC 2 and ROC 4 streaking directly at him.

As they approached the two kaiju the ROCS descended and decelerated to a sub supersonic speed. ROC 4 dropped behind ROC 2 who quickly started accelerating again as it flew toward the kaiju. Munroe had timed ROC 2’s speed so that the cybernetic bird broke the sound barrier at the exact moment that it flew between Gfantis and the werewolf. The sonic boom cascaded out from ROC 2 and crashed into Gfantis and the werewolf with the force of a small nuclear weapon. Both kaiju were sent crashing to the ground. Gfantis rolled over and shook his head in an attempted to stop it from ringing. He looked up to see the werewolf rolling from side to side in agony as ROC 2 closed in on the golden dragon. ROC 2 shifted his body to a vertical position when it was over Gfantis. ROC 2 then flapped its wings once and sent a barrage of diamond coated steel feathers at Gfantis. The feathers embedded themselves into Gfantis’s face, arms, and shoulders. Gfantis roared in anger at his new attacker. He then turned his head to see ROC 4 grab the werewolf in its claws and drag it across the ground.

Gfantis stood up and started to pursue the werewolf when he suddenly felt the spikes on his back freezing solid as a pure white mist surrounded his body. He turned around and his chest was struck by a mist so cold that it caused his scales to instantly freeze, crack, and fall off of his body. ROC 2 hovered over Gfantis with its mouth open while a liquid nitrogen spray spewed forth from its beak. Gfantis backed away from the freezing attack while he simultaneously charged the crescent horn atop of his head. Gfantis took one final step backward then a golden bolt of solar energy arched out of his crescent horn and struck ROC 2 across its chest. ROC 2 screeched in pain and then fell to the ground. Munroe stared up through ROC 2’s eyes as it laid helpless on the ground with the Prince of the Monsters’ looming over it.

ROC 4 had hovered over the werewolf and used its talons and beak to attack the cryptid while the werewolf slashed at ROC 4 with its claws. The two kaiju moved in a blur of fur and feathers as they tore into each other. The werewolf slowly managed to fight his way back to his feet. Once he had regained his vertical base the cryptid leapt at ROC 4 and knocked the winged kaiju to the ground. Bixby quickly had ROC 4 stand up. He looked through ROC 4’s eyes to see the werewolf leaping at the cyborg. Bixby quickly had ROC 4 unleash a barrage of its diamond coated steel feathers at the werewolf. The feathers buried themselves in the werewolf’s skin but they did not stop the monster’s attack. The werewolf landed on top of ROC 4. The move sent both monsters crashing to the ground with ROC 4 pinned beneath the cryptid.

Munroe struggled to get ROC 2 back into the air. She knew that if ROC 2 died while she was engaged in a neuro-link with it that the feedback would render her braindead. Her body would continue living but her consciousness would be gone. ROC 2 had scrambled back to its feet and Munroe was prepared to engage Gfantis in close quarters combat when she looked through ROC 2’s eyes to see Gfantis walking away from the cybernetic bird. ROC 2 took off into the sky which allowed Munroe to see over Gfantis. She looked over Gfantis to see ROC 4 pinned beneath the werewolf with Gfantis closing in on it. Her mind immediately went to a scene of Bixby lying braindead in his recliner after the werewolf and Gfantis had ripped ROC 4 to pieces. Munroe had ROC 2 fly directly behind ROC 4 and land on the ground. The werewolf continued to tear into ROC 4 and Gfantis had almost reached them as well when ROC 2 spread its mighty wings and flapped them in rapid succession. Hurricane force winds began to swirl out from the kaiju’s wing’s which caused the werewolf to tumble off of ROC 4. The wall of wind had also halted Gfantis’s forward motion. Bixby took the opportunity to have ROC 4 move away from the kaiju and to get itself back into the sky.

When the werewolf stopped tumbling the cryptid stood and started running toward the city of Chicago. The former Beast of Bray Road still felt the influence of Rol-Hama directing him to destroy the city. ROC 4 circled Gfantis once and then it flew after the werewolf. Despite the fact that the cryptid ran at an unbelievable speed, ROC 4 was able to the catch up to werewolf, in a matter of seconds. ROC 4 flew over the werewolf and it bombarded the beast with its bladed feathers. The blades sliced through its skin causing the werewolf to stop running and to face ROC 4. Before Bixby and ROC 4 could react, the werewolf jumped at ROC 4 and bit down into the bird’s shoulder. The werewolf landed on the ground with ROC 4 still stuck in its jaws. The monster shook the bird from side to side and then it threw ROC 4 to the ground. Bixby was looking through ROC 4’s eyes at the sky above him, when his view was suddenly filled with the horrifying form of the giant werewolf standing above ROC 4.

ROC 2 continued to send powerful bursts of wind at Gfantis until, to Munroe’s surprise, Gfantis turned around and started walking in the direction of Chicago. Munroe realized that she was actually pushing Gfantis in the direction of the city. She immediately had ROC 4 cease sending the wind bursts at Gfantis. ROC 2 then flew around Gfantis’s head where it started tearing at Gfantis’s face with its beak and talons. With one swipe of his mighty claw, Gfantis knocked ROC 4 away from him. ROC 4 tumbled through the air until it was able to correct its flight pattern. When ROC 4 had steadied itself Munroe looked through its eyes to see the crescent horn on top of Gfantis’s head glowing.

In an act of desperation, ROC 4 opened its beak and sprayed the liquid nitrogen stored in its throat at the werewolf. The man-beast yelped in pain and tried to claw the freezing white cloud away from its face. The werewolf had just backed away from the freezing cloud when he was stuck across the chest from Gfantis’s beam and sent crashing to the ground. ROC 4 had returned to an upright position as ROC 2 flew over its head and signaled for ROC 4 to fly higher into the air. Bixby knew that this meant that Munroe wanted him to hold a pattern high above the kaiju so that they could briefly break their neuro-links and discuss and new plan of attack. ROC 4 followed ROC 2 into the sky. Bixby took a quick look back at the two kaiju to see Gfantis attacking the werewolf again.

The ROCs circled above the action as Bixby took his helmet off and awoke back in the NEST with Munroe. Munroe spoke quickly, “Twice already Gfantis had the chance to either attack one of us or the city and on both occasions he has gone after the werewolf. I think he has specifically come here to attack the werewolf. I think that we should focus our attack on the werewolf. If we slay the werewolf and Gfantis attacks either the ROCs or the city we can at least fight him together.”

Bixby shrugged, “We operate better as a team anyway and us attacking the two kaiju individually isn’t getting us anywhere.” The two pilots then threw their helmets back on and reengaged in their neuro-links.

The werewolf viciously attacked Gfantis until the kaiju stepped forward and brought his powerful forearm crashing into the cryptid’s head. The blow caused the werewolf to fall to his knees. The cryptid had staggered back to his feet when ROC 2 swooped down and tore into the werewolf’s head. The monster turned around to attack ROC 2 just as the monster flew back into the sky. The werewolf clawed in vain at thin air as Gfantis delivered a kick to the cryptid’s ribs. The werewolf fell onto its face as ROC 4 flew down and sprayed the werewolf with its liquid nitrogen attack. The werewolf felt its fur freezing solid and breaking off of his body. The werewolf rolled onto his back and swiped at the air as ROC 4 ascended into the sky. The werewolf was in mid growl when Gfantis’s tail slammed into his jaw and knocked him to the ground again. The blow stunned the colossal Beast of Bray Road. The werewolf had forced himself into a sitting position when it looked up to see Gfantis standing above him with his crescent horn glowing. As the werewolf stared at Gfantis ROC 2 and ROC 4 landed on opposite sides of the cryptid. The ROCs opened their beaks and began to cover the werewolf’s head in liquid nitrogen while simultaneously Gfantis fired his solar powered Crescent Beam into the werewolf’s chest. The werewolf howled in pain as his head was being frozen while at the same time his heart was literally burned out of its chest.

Gfantis’s beam cut through the werewolf’s chest and burst out of his back. The deceased cryptid fell backwards and when his frozen head stuck the ground it shattered into thousands of pieces. Gfantis lifted his head and roared in triumph as the ROCs took back to the sky. ROC 2 and ROC 4 flew in a tight circle between Gfantis and the City of Chicago. The Prince of the Monsters’ looked at the two ROCs then he turned and headed back for Lake Michigan.

The ROCs flew behind Gfantis until Director Mackenzie typed new instructions through their nuero-link.

The ship that was taking the strike team to Rol-Hama’s stronghold has been attacked by the giant Lizardman. Captain Crow and his team were able to flee from the ship but they are currently trapped by the Lizardman in the crevice of a rock wall facing the ocean. You are to escort Gfantis to Lake Michigan. If he enters the lake peacefully you are to proceed at top speed to engage the Lizardman. We can always come back for Gfantis later as long as he is not attacking the city but we need to take out Rol-Hama ASAP. The National Guard can keep an eye on Gfantis while you guys engage the Lizardman.

The ROCS followed Gfantis as the kaiju continued to make his way to Lake Michigan. When the monster reached the lake he quietly slipped beneath its calm waters. As soon as the kaiju’s head disappeared beneath the surface of the lake the ROCs streaked toward the Atlantic Ocean.

Gfantis swam to the bottom of the lake to rest. He had destroyed one threat to the planet and it seemed as if the two ROCS he had encountered were working toward that same end. Gfantis could not sense any other threats to the planet in the immediate area. Once the monster had rested he would return to the North Pole where he could absorb the precious energy of the sun. Once the monster was at full strength again he would continue to search the world for threats to the Earth. When he found those threats he would destroy them just as he had the Legendary Werewolf of Bray Road.

The End.

Gfantis, Kodoja, Atomic Rex: At World’s End

Story by Matthew Dennion

Art by Dennis Roth

Author’s Note – This entry into the Gfantis vs “Guest Monster Series” features two different kaiju! One kaiju comes to us from the world of comics and the other from a novel.

Kodoja – Is the kaiju featured in the comic Kodoja: Terror Mountain Showdown. Kodoja is a 200 foot tall Bio-Mechanical Droid created by the government as an ultimate weapon. In its comic, Kodoja activates itself and goes on a rampage. Kodoja no sooner starts its rampage than a second kaiju appears and the two monsters are set on a collision course with each other! Kodoja was created by Keith Foster, Rory Smith, and Lance Pilgrim. You can purchase Kodoja comics and keep up on his adventures at http://kodoja.com/

Atomic Rex- Atomic Rex is featured in my novel Atomic Rex. Atomic Rex is a Destroy All Monsters homage to the giant monster films of the 1950’s and 1960’s. It takes place in a post-apocalyptic world where daikaiju have taken over North America and split it up into various territories. In the novel, the Northeastern United States is ruled by the nuclear powered theropod Atomic Rex. Atomic Rex is published by Severed Press and can be found in both print and digital formats on Amazon as well as at www.matthewdennion.com and www.severedpress.com

It was the middle of July as Juliet Cruz sat alone on the Jersey Shore as waves lolled peacefully onto an empty beach. Decades ago, the beach would have been full of teenagers like her swimming in the surf and basking in the sun, but that was before the end of the world. That was before the coming of the kaiju. Juliet coughed and a mouthful of blood shot out onto the sand. Juliet looked at the blood for a moment as she contemplated the events from three years prior that had brought both her and the rest of mankind to this point.

The United States government had run nuclear tests on a series of remote islands in the Pacific Ocean that they thought were uninhabited. Had anyone taken the time to thoroughly check the island chain in question they would have found the greatest biological discovery in the history of mankind. The islands were populated by creatures long thought to have been extinct such as dinosaurs and other prehistoric beasts. When the island was exposed to the nuclear tests the radiation mutated the dinosaurs and other forms of life into kaiju. The kaiju in turn lashed out at civilization. Within less than a year, the kaiju had conquered and destroyed most of the known world and claimed its remains as their own.

The monstrous acid spewing turtle known as Tortiraus had destroyed everything along the Gulf of Mexico. The quadrupedal Giladon had laid waste to the Midwest. The giant cannibalistic Yokozuna had eaten every human that he could find in the Northwestern United States. The Northeastern United States had been claimed by perhaps the most terrifying and powerful kaiju of them all in Atomic Rex.

When the kaiju had first appeared, humanity had tried fight back against them with the creation of gigantic mechs. The general population rejoiced at the creation of the mechs. The giant robots were seen as the saviors who would end the threat of the kaiju and restore humans to their proper place as rulers of the world. Those sentiments changed after the first few battles between the mechs and the kaiju. Before the power went out for the last time, people watched on TV’s and computers as one by one the mechs were crushed by the kaiju. It appeared as if the most powerful weapons that the humans could control was no match for the mighty kaiju. The mech’s fell and with them so did humanity. The world had ended. The kaiju now freely roamed the continent and as they walked over their various territories they spread their radiation.

The radiation that the kaiju emitted effected the fauna of the landscape. Animals, bugs, and microscopic organisms were all mutated by the radiation into ravenous giants. These creatures would in turn increase the threat of giant monsters posed to humanity.

The last that Juliet had heard the few people who remained alive were heading to Kansas as if that were a refuge from the kaiju. Juliette had grown up in a family where her mother and father were high ranking members of military research and development. When the kaiju attacked her family had been moved to what was thought to be a secure location in Washington DC. While they were in hiding, the remaining political leaders of the United States begged her father to share with them the long held family secret to reactivating the one weapon that humans had that was capable of defeating the kaiju. That weapon was the bio-droid known as Kodoja.

Despite the threat posed to humanity by the kaiju, Juliet’s father refused to divulge the information. He had said, “The human species may still find a way to recover from these kaiju attacks. We may even find a way to exist in world that is ruled by the kaiju. If we were to activate the bio-droid it would mean the end of all life on Earth. Human, kaiju, everything would be wiped out.”

Kodoja had been created by Juliet’s ancestors to be the ultimate defender of the United States but in reality the bio-droid was a doomsday weapon. Once when her father was talking to the military about the weapon she had seen a photograph of Kodoja and a list of his awesome abilities. The bio-droid was a massive humanoid construction. The overall form of its body exuded a sense of raw brutal power. When Juliet had first seen Kodoja, it had reminded her of some of the characters from the comic books that her father had saved for her. Kodoja’s body structure reminded her of a giant form of something akin to the Incredible Hulk or the Doomsday monster that had killed Superman in a memorable story. The main difference between these fictional characters and the bio-droid was that Kodoja had a thick and elongated face that seemed almost too large in proportion to the rest of its body.

The bio-droid also had an odd outer layer of synthetic skin. As Juliet looked at the report she realized that the skin allowed Kodoja to stretch its body to extreme lengths almost as if it were completely composed of putty. The bio-droid was even able to fire off pieces of its body as projectiles if needed. It also had the ability to reabsorb those pieces back into its main body when it had recollected them. In addition to its awesome physical power, Kodoja also had a wide array lasers embedded in its body.

Shortly after its creation, Kodoja had become self-aware and it went on a rampage attacking everything in sight. After the bio-droid had caused massive amounts of destruction, Juliet’s ancestors had managed to find a way to shut down Kodoja and since then it had remained dormant. Juliet’s father was determined to keep Kodoja dormant, but that all changed when Atomic Rex attacked the compound where Juliet and her family were hiding.

Years later she could still remember the attack as if it had happened only yesterday. Alarms blared throughout the compound. People were screaming orders as a recorded voice continued to echo over the PA system repeating the command to calmly evacuate the compound. Outside of the compound, Juliet could hear the sound of cannons being fired repeatedly. Her father was holding her hand and her mother was running behind them with her younger brother as they tried to make their way to the heliport where a helicopter was waiting to whisk them away from the horror that was coming for the base.

Juliet and her father were still running when they felt the first impact tremor. A few second later, a second impact hit the compound with such force that it shook the walls of the building. Then despite the blaring alarms, the PA system recording, and the cannon fire Juliet heard a sound that a sent a shiver of fear down her spine . It was a long, deep, and guttural roar. It was a roar that she would never forgot. He father stopped running for a second and he said, “My god, it’s him.” He looked over at his wife, “I have heard that roar on recordings. This is no mere giant mutant. Atomic Rex is here!” He grabbed his wife and young son and pushed them ahead of him, “He’ll kill everyone in this complex! We have to go now! We have to get out of here!”

As Juliet’s mother took off down the hallway with her young brother clutched to her chest, another deafening roar rocked the complex. Juliet started to run when a shockwave shook the complex and caused her to lose her balance and fall to the ground. Juliet’s father stopped to help her. Juliet was laying on the floor and watching her mother and brother run down the hallway toward the helicopter when a massive green clawed foot crashed through the roof of the hallway and crushed them both to death. Juliet screamed and her father fought back tears as he helped her up. Juliet stared at the saurian leg as it pulled itself back out of the hallway. She looked up the through the opening that that the leg had created to see a huge dark green theropod like head came into view and roar as it was struck by a series of missiles.

Her father snatched her up and then they ran back through the hallway. He took Juliet outside of the complex and they took off into the woods. They watched from a distance with tears in their eyes as the military fought in vain to the last man as Atomic Rex destroyed everything in sight. He had simply crushed most of the resistance beneath his clawed feet. From a distance, Juliet could see the daikaiju in its entirety. Atomic Rex was aptly named. The beast had the overall appearance of theropod dinosaur like a T-Rex. Like a T-Rex, the monster had a long body that was balanced out by a thick tail. There were differences though from most theropods. The most obvious difference was size. The largest T-Rex was about thirty feet long while Atomic Rex was over one hundred and fifty feet in length. Atomic Rex also had long and powerful arms that he could use for grabbing items and grappling with other kaiju. The monster also had a hard alligator like caprice that ran from the back of his neck to the tip of his tail.

The most terrifying differences were in the monster’s unique abilities. As was the case with most of the kaiju, Atomic Rex was nearly indestructible. Bullets and cannon fire simply bounced off of the monster’s thick hide. The military needed to use high caliber rockets and missiles to even get the kaiju to notice that they were attacking him. Gaining the attention of Atomic Rex, was not the best plan for dealing with the creature. When the kaiju was angered or felt that he was in danger the beast would unleash his most powerful attack in the form of his Atomic Wave.

Juliet had witnessed this awesome attack first hand when saw Atomic Rex destroy the military instillation that she had called home. She watched as the nuclear theropod continued to stomp the compound into rubble. All that she could hear was the monster roaring and the sound of buildings being crushed and falling to the ground until there was a high pitched shriek that came from the sky behind her. She and her father turned around to see a Blackbird fighter descending from the sky above them. The Blackbird dropped to an altitude just above the tree line and when it flew over them the slipstream that jet created threw Juliet and her father to the ground.

Juliet’s lifted her face from the soil to see the bottom of the Blackbird open and reveal and large missile. The jet fired the missile and Juliet watched as it streaked toward the rampaging Atomic Rex. The missile struck the kaiju and engulfed Atomic Rex and what remained of the compound in a ball of flames. Juliet stared at the smoke where Atomic Rex had been only moments before and she waited to see the burning corpse of the monster that had killed her mother and brother. What she saw was something entirely different as a bright blue light started to appear inside the thick smoke. Her father grabbed her and picked her up as he shouted, “We have to find cover immediately!”

Her father started running while Juliet looked over her father’s shoulder as the smoke began to clear and the bright blue light continued to grow. When Atomic Rex stepped out of the smoke, Juliet could see that it was the kaiju’s body that was glowing. The monster roared and stomped his foot. When Atomic Rex’s foot hit the ground, a large dome of blue light cascaded out from his body. The dome continued to expand as it raced across the landscape knocking down and burning everything that it came into contact with. Juliet watched as the dome of energy knocked down and incinerated trees as it moved toward her and her father. Her father found a shallow stream and he jumped into it pushing Juliet to the bottom of the stream while simultaneously using his body to shield her. She watched as her father’s body shook when the wave rolled over his back. A moment later her father pulled her up from the bottom of the stream and walked her over to the shoreline. He moaned and then he dropped her into the muddy bank of the stream. He then fell to the ground face first and Juliet saw that most of his back was ripped to pieces by the energy that had struck it.

Juliet began to tear up as her father used the last of his energy to lift his face out of the mud to look at her, “I was wrong. There will be no world left if the kaiju continue to roam free.” He looked into Juliet’s eyes, “It’s up to you Juliet. You need to wake Kodoja so that it can slay the kaiju that have destroyed the human race.” He coughed as he continued to try and talk, “We buried the bio-droid in the Pine Barrens in New Jersey. It is connected to a large array of solar panels at the edge of the forest. You need to travel there and turn on the solar grid using the code Asmodeous1964. It will take roughly six hours to power up the bio-droid. When he wakes up he will destroy everything that he comes across. Even Atomic Rex won’t be able to survive against the destructive force of Kodoja.”

Her father coughed and then he used his finger to write down coordinates into the mud. He pointed at them, “This is the location where you can find the control station to power up Kodoja. Remember them, go to New Jersey, Power up the bio-droid, and then unleash him on the kaiju that have killed your family and your species.” He grabbed Juliet’s hand, “I love you my daughter.” Her father then closed his eyes and died leaving Juliet alone in a world ruled by kaiju.

It took nearly four weeks for Juliet to make the trip to New Jersey on foot through a land inhabited by giant mutated animals. In addition to mutants and kaiju, she was also faced with and ever increasing sense of feeling sick. Her father had educated her well. She knew exactly why she was feeling sick. Her father had used his body to shield her from the blast and the heat of Atomic Wave but the radiation had still reached her. Juliet was slowly dying of radiation poisoning. When she realized that her death was imminent she doubled her efforts to reach Kodoja and activate the weapon that would slay the monster that he killed her entire family, destroyed much of the human race, and ultimately sentenced her to a slow and painful death.

Her mind flashed ahead to when she had located the hidden base and the control station from which she could start to repower Kodoja. Her heart leapt for joy when she typed in the codes that her father had given her and she saw the massive body starting to twitch as the solar panels sprang to life and began absorbing the sun’s energy then pumping it into Kodoja.

As Juliet watched the dormant form of Kodoja starting to come to life like some giant version of a Frankenstein Monster she knew that, much like the infamous Doctor Frankenstein, that she too would be destroyed by the creature she was giving life too. The difference between Frankenstein and Juliet was that she was actually at piece with the idea. In her four week long journey, she had seen no other living humans. She happened to come across the base which had sent the Blackbird to attack Atomic Rex only to find that it had been smashed to pieces as well. There was no remaining outpost of humans for her to join and her entire family was in the afterlife waiting for her. As far as Juliet was aware she was the last human alive on the planet. In a world ruled by kaiju where she had radiation poisoning, Juliet did not view death as a something to be feared but rather as a release from the hell that she currently lived in. Juliet’s radiation sickness had progressed to the point where she was sure that she only had a few painful weeks left to live. All that remained for her to do before she died, was to see her revenge come to its fruition when Kodoja slew Atomic Rex.

She felt a grim sense of satisfaction when she realized that from within the bunker where Kodoja was located that she would be able to see him slay Atomic Rex through the bio-droid’s own eyes. None of her ancestors had ever figured out how to control Kodoja but they had figured out how to tap into the bio-droid’s visual feed. From within the bunker buried beneath the Pine Barrens, Juliet would be able to see everything that Kodoja saw as he crushed Atomic Rex.

A waved rolled over Juliet’s feet and she opened her eyes brining her back to the present. She looked at the sun and realized that it was nearly noon. She had started powering up Kodoja when the sun rose and then she had hiked the mile distance out to the beach to see it one last time. The bio-droid was due to be fully powered any minute now. The creation of her ancestors would awaken and then go on a rampage destroying everything around it. Juliet knew that she was directly in the heart of Atomic Rex’s territory. She also knew that all of the kaiju were highly territorial and that the minute Kodoja awoke that Atomic Rex would sense his presence and start heading toward the bio-droid to protect his territory. What Juliet was unaware of was that but activating the solar panels that she had entered a third variable into the equation in the form of another kaiju.

Off the shores of the Atlantic Coast, the Price of the Monster’s stirred beneath the waves. Since the dawn of the age of kaiju Gfantis had mainly stayed in the deep ocean. The beast was content to simply drift along the surface of the water for long stretches of time in order to let his body absorb the sunlight that powered him. Gfantis could sense condensed forms of solar power from vast distances, in the same manner that a shark could sense could sense a drop of blood in the water from miles away. When Juliet had activated the solar panels to charge Kodoja, she had also gained the attention of Gfantis who sensed the energy that his body craved gathering into a single point. Each particle of solar energy that Kodoja drew into his body helped Gfantis to zone in on the bio-droids location. From the moment that Juliet had turned on the solar panels to power Kodoja, Gfantis had been heading to shore and as noon approached the Prince of the Monster’s was about to make landfall.

Juliet was still looking out at the ocean as she waited for Kodoja to wake up. Another cool wave rolled across her feet and then as the wave returned to the ocean she watched as most of the water in front of her receded back as well. She knew exactly what the receding water meant, and when she saw a large swell of water heading toward the beach it confirmed her suspicions. Juliet ran to the to the top of the nearest sand dune in order to keep herself from being swept away by the oncoming surge of water and to hide from the direct sight of Atomic Rex!

Juliet hid in the tall grass of the sand dune and she kept her body close to the ground. She was waiting to see the monster that she would soon have her revenge against after Kodoja had destroyed the nuclear horror. She was taken aback when she saw two large pointed horns and then a smaller crescent shaped horn break the surface of the water. She had seen Atomic Rex on numerous occasions and she was sure that the creature did not have horns. A golden saurian head broke the surface and when Juliet saw the creature’s face she became even more confused as none of the known kaiju were golden in color. The creature continued to emerge from the ocean and Juliet noticed that while the kaiju had some qualities similar to that of dinosaur that it also had vast differences. Unlike Atomic Rex who used his tail to balance out his body this creature stood upright and walked like a primate. The kaiju had long jagged spikes protruding from his back. As the kaiju walked out of the water he lifted his head into the sky and roared.

Juliet felt the ground shake beneath her and as the sun caught the monster she remembered a story that she heard before the time of the kaiju. Her father would read the tabloid magazines for fun. There was one magazine that covered the story of a golden kaiju known as Gfantis. Her father and everyone else had thought that the Gfantis stories were the exploits of a writer’s imagination but as Gfantis stepped onto the beach she realized that the stories of the monster were all too real.

Gfantis looked in the direction of the solar panels that were due to bring Kodoja to life at any moment. Juliet whispered to herself, “Those old tabloids claimed that Gfantis was solar powered. He must sense the energy being generated by the solar panels that I activated.” Seemingly in response to Juliet’s deduction, The Prince of the Monsters started walking in the direction of hidden bunker. After Gfantis was well past her, Juliet came out from within thick grass of the sand dune and she began to follow the creature. In most instances, the unexpected appearance of a kaiju was a cataclysmic event but in this instance it was a fortuitous turn of events for Juliet. Not only was Gfantis heading directly for Kodoja but he was in Atomic Rex’s territory as well. With both Kodoja and Gfantis in the same area of his territory, Atomic Rex was sure to appear to try and drive the invaders from off his land. Atomic Rex would find not one but two formidable adversaries waiting for him. Juliet smiled to herself confident in the thought that Atomic Rex would meet his end on this very day.

Gfantis walked into the thick brush like trees of the Pine Barrens and before long the solar panels that he sought came into view. The monster roared when he saw untold acres of solar panels ahead of him. The kaiju started to walk toward the concentrated form of sunlight that his body craved and as he did so he sent shockwaves out in front of him with each step that he took.

Deep beneath the earth in the sandy terrain of the New Jersey, one of the shockwaves from Gfantis’ footfalls shook ground that Kodoja was buried in. The bio-droid’s eyes snapped open and it found its body to be fully powered. Kodoja stood up throwing tons of sand and trees into the air as it did so. Then for the first time in decades, the most powerful killing machine ever created climbed out of the hole that it was buried in and stood upon the face of the earth.

Gfantis saw the ground explode between himself and the solar panels that he coveted. As the dust cleared he saw the awesome form of Kodoja standing before him. Kodoja turned toward Gfantis and its mechanical brain quickly scanned the kaiju’s body for possible strengths and weakness while simultaneously bringing up any information on creatures matching Gfantis’ description. Within less than a second, Kodoja had every known piece of information on Gfantis downloaded into its cybernetic mind.

Juliet had stopped running several hundred feet from where Gfantis was standing and in front of the golden kaiju she could see her family’s legacy in the form of Kodoja. She was standing only a few feet from the entrance to the control bunker where she already had the feed to Kodoja’s visual processing unit up on the computer screens but seeing Kodoja standing before her froze her in her tracks. Kodoja was the creation of her family that would avenge the destruction of the human race and she felt an instinctual urge to view the creature with her own eyes.

Gfantis roared at the bio-droid that stood between him and the energy that he desired. The monster took a step toward Kodoja and he did so the bio-droid opened its mouth and unleashed a blast of plasma energy at the kaiju. The beam hit Gfantis in the chest with such force that it knocked the kaiju on its back. Gfantis rolled over onto his stomach then he stood up on all four legs in his quadrupedal position. Juliet watched as the crescent horn atop of Gfantis’ head began to glow. A second later, it fired an arcing yellow beam at Kodoja that sliced right through the bio-droid’s forearm arm. The bio-droid didn’t even acknowledge the fact that it had been injured as within seconds of having the beam go through it Kodoja’s body had repaired the damage done to its arm. Kodoja bent its knees slightly then it jumped at Gfantis. Kodoja landed in front of Gfantis and brought his right fist crashing down into the monster’s head driving it into the ground. Kodoja lifted its left fist in to the air in order to strike Gfantis again but before it could do so the kaiju latched his jaws onto the bio-droid’s right hand. Gfantis pulled down on Kodoja’s arm forcing the bio-droid to the ground. Kodoja’s back hit the forest hard and Gfantis immediately crawled onto the bio-droid’s chest and closed his jaws around its head. Gfantis dug his teeth into Kodoja’s head and then shook the bio-droid’s skull with more than enough force to have broken the neck of any living creature.

Feeling that his enemy had been vanquished Gfantis released his grip on Kodoja and then unleashed a roar to proclaim his victory. Juliet was watching in disbelief as she had been led to believe by her father that Kodoja was all but invincible. Her faith in her father’s claims was reassured when she saw Kodoja’s right hand lift off the ground and swat Gfantis off its chest.

Gfantis went rolling through the forest from the force of Kodoja’s blow. The monster skidded to a stop then he began clawing at the ground. Kodoja stood up ready to reengage his foe but the bio-droid was unable to locate the kaiju. Kodoja saw a large hole in the ground where Gfantis had been a moment ago and the bio-droid’s enhanced cybernetic brain recalled that Gfantis had the ability to burrow beneath the earth. Kodoja was scanning the ground between itself and the hole when Gfantis exploded up from beneath the bio-droid. The kaiju dug his horns into Kodoja’s right thigh then he stood up sending Kodoja tumbling through the forest. Kodoja stopped its momentum and pushed its body into a crouching position. Before the bio-droid could stand, Gfantis used his tail to strike it in the face. Kodoja’s head snapped to the side and Gfantis pressed his attack by using his claws to strike Kodoja’s repeatedly across the face and the top of the head.

The bio-droid absorbed the blows then he shot up from the ground and connected with an uppercut to Gfantis’ jaw that sent the kaiju soaring nearly a half mile through the air and caused him to crash down in the middle of the dense forest. Juliet stared at Kodoja in awe at the sheer power of the monster that she had awakened. Kodoja turned around slowly and looked toward Juliet. She was fully aware that the bio-droid knew she was there and that it would most likely crush her like a bug but Juliet also noticed that it seemed as if Kodoja was looking past her and not at her.

It was at that moment, that she felt the familiar shake of the ground beneath her feet. Juliet slowly turned around to see the horrifying form of Atomic Rex walking through the forest behind her. Atomic Rex glared at Kodoja and the kaiju’s grew wide with anger. The nuclear theropod reared his head back and unleashed a roar that was so loud it forced Juliet to fall to the ground and cover her ears to prevent her ear drums from shattering.

The shaking beneath her feet increased as Atomic Rex began running toward Kodoja. With the kaiju bearing down upon her, Juliet quickly ran over and opened the hatch to underground compound. The entire compound was shaking and dust was falling on her head from the ceiling above as the massive form of Atomic Rex ran overhead. She looked over to the computer screen to see Atomic Rex running at Kodoja from the bio-droid’s point of view. The view from the screen, was akin to what it was like sitting a in shark cage as a great white charged the steel barricade with much greater speed than the diver had anticipated. All that Juliet had the chance to see was a streak of green as Atomic Rex closed in on Kodoja. From that point on, all that Juliet could do was to watch as the two titans above her battled.

As Juliet was racing over to the computer screen, nearly a mile away Gfantis lifted himself out of the crater of sand and timber that his body had created. The monster shook himself off, roared, and then started heading back to the solar panels that he coveted and the bio-droid whom he was now determined to destroy.

Atomic Rex charged Kodoja with a speed that belied his massive size. Even the bio-droid’s reflexes were unable to respond quickly enough to stop the oncoming kaiju. Atomic Rex slammed into Kodoja with the force of a hurricane while simultaneously latching his jaws around the shoulder and left arm of Kodoja and wrapping his arms around the bio-droid’s waist. Atomic Rex drove Kodoja back and to the left before throwing the bio-droid to the ground. With Kodoja flat on the ground, Atomic Rex stepped onto its chest and bent down to tear off Kodoja’s head but he was met with a powerful right hook to the jaw that knocked him off the bio-droid.

Kodoja stood up to see that Atomic Rex had already recovered from the blow that had removed him from its chest. Once more Atomic Rex charged at Kodoja, wrapped his arms around the giant, and then began using his massive jaws to tear into the bio-droid’s chest. Atomic Rex had no sooner sank his teeth into Kodoja’s chest then the bio-droid shifted around the mass of its body so that the kaiju’s jaws had nothing to latch onto. Kodoja’s entire body reshaped itself then reformed in position where it was able to use its powerful arms to trap Atomic Rex in a headlock. Kodoja pulled hard on the nuclear theropod’s neck, lifting the beast off his feet and then releasing him sending Atomic Rex tumbling through the dense trees of the Pine Barrens. Atomic Rex’s body continued to roll until he entered the field of solar panels that had revived Kodoja. The kaiju’s body had crushed most of the solar panels before he was finally able to stop his momentum. Atomic Rex stood up and roared at Kodoja, indicating that his battle with this intruder into his territory was far from over.

Kodoja was staring at Atomic Rex when a beam of white hot energy tore across its back. Kodoja’s back was still smoking as it turned its head around a full one hundred and eighty degrees to see Gfantis standing behind it. With Atomic Rex and Gfantis threating it from either side, the bio-droid attacked. Kodoja fired a blast of plasma out of its mouth at Gfantis while at the same time firing another blast of plasma energy out of its chest at Atomic Rex. Both blasts struck their respective targets in the chest and caused the two kaiju to back up several steps. Once he had regained his footing, Gfantis fired another blast of his crescent beam at Kodoja, while Atomic Rex took the opportunity to charge at the bio-droid.

Atomic Rex lower his head and slammed into Kodoja with enough force to knock the bio-droid off its feet and to send it tumbling toward Gfantis. Kodoja stood up in front of Gfantis and the Prince of the Monster’s bit into the bio-droid’s left forearm while using his claws to rake the doomsday weapon across its chest. While Kodoja was engaged with Gfantis, Atomic Rex ran up to the bio-droid and attacked it from its right side by latching his jaws onto the giant’s hip and wrapping his arms around Kodoja’s waste. Atomic Rex and Gfantis clawed at tore at the bio-droid as it used its one free arm to fight off its attackers. Despite the ferocity of their attack and their incredible physical strength, the nearly invincible Kodoja was slowly managing to overpower both of its attackers. It took several blows to free Gfantis from its arm but when Kodoja had finally managed to force the golden kaiju off its arm, the bio-droid delivered a round house punch to the monster’s face that knocked Gfantis to the ground.

With one monster knocked away from it, Kodoja wrapped both arms around Atomic Rex then the bio-droid forced the nuclear theropod to the ground. As Kodoja continued to apply pressure to Atomic Rex, the kaiju could feel both the air being squeezed out of his lungs and his bones starting to crack under the incredible pressure being exerted on them.

Atomic Rex’s eyes grew wide and he roared at the semi-living thing that had dared to challenge his supremacy. The kaiju reached deep into his very cells to find the energy that powered him. Kodoja still had Atomic Rex trapped in the crushing hold as the kaiju’s skin began to glow a bright blue color. Behind Kodoja, Gfantis had recovered from the blow that was dealt to him and he was prepared to attack the bio-droid again when a dome of bright blue light shot out from Atomic Rex and sent Kodoja flying into him. Both kaiju and bio-droid were caught up in the expanding dome of nuclear energy that was the Atomic Wave.

Deep within the bunker beneath the carnage occurring above her, Juliet saw a bright flash of blue light through Kodoja’s eyes and then her screen showed nothing but static.

The Atomic Wave carried both Kodoja and Gfantis nearly five hundred feet back in the direction the ocean before it dropped them into the forest. Atomic Rex stood up in the middle of what looked like ground zero for a nuclear attack. He looked at his fallen adversaries then he roared proclaiming his supremacy to the world.

When Gfantis finally stopping hurtling through the air he found himself laying on his back with the lifeless form of Kodoja slumped across his chest. The bio-droid has absorbed most of the blast of the Atomic Wave and partially shielded Gfantis from the attack. Gfantis pushed Kodoja off of him and then he stood up to see Atomic Rex standing near the ruins of what had once been the solar panels that had initially drawn Gfantis to this area. Gfantis roared at the creature that had destroyed the source of his power and in doing so he alerted Atomic Rex to the fact that he was still alive. The still enraged Atomic Rex responded to Gfantis’ challenge with a roar of his own and then he started running toward the golden kaiju.

Juliet stared at the static filled screen before her. She ran over to the computer attached to the screen and she began looking at the data coming from Kodoja. She scanned the data for a moment then she said, “It seems that most of Kodoja’s systems are still running. That nuclear blast must have knocked out the biological component of Kodoja that helps to keep him conscious.” She continued to talk herself through ways in which she could reawaken the fallen bio-droid.” It only took one quick look at the minimal amount of data coming in from the destroyed solar panels for her to determine that there were barely enough solar panels left to power the bunker let alone to reawaken Kodoja. An idea entered her mind and she shouted it out loud, “Kodoja is as much a living creature as it is a robot. I can’t control it but I can influence a few of its biological components. If I can’t use energy to repower it maybe I can use a bio-chemical process to reawaken it.” She ran over to the keyboard and she began typing in commands which she hoped would send a surge of adrenaline coursing through the bio-droid.

Above ground Gfantis and Atomic Rex were caught in a blur of teeth and claws as the two dragon like kaiju went at each other with a ferocity unmatched by any of the other monsters on the planet. Blood flew from both beasts as the evergreen trees below them began to take on a red hue from the radioactive and solar powered blood that rained down on them. While the two kaiju were for the most part evenly matched Atomic Rex was fighting to protect his territory and step by hard fought step he was slowly forcing Gfantis back toward the ocean.

Sweat was pouring from Juliet’s brow as she feverishly typed commands into the computer. When she finally hit the Enter key Kodoja’s body convulsed as shot of adrenaline ran through it. As the adrenaline reached the biological component of the bio-droid’s brain the feed from its visual processing unit flashed back onto Juliet’s screen.

She watched through the bio-droid’s vison as Kodoja stood up, looked in the direction that Atomic Rex and Gfantis had headed in, bent its knees, and then leapt into the air.

Atomic Rex and Gfantis were less than a quarter mile from the ocean when Kodoja came crashing down next to them like a meteor falling from the sky. Atomic Rex had his jaws latched onto Gfantis’s left arm while Gfantis clawed at Atomic Rex with right arm and had his teeth dug into the nuclear theropod’s right shoulder. The two kaiju were jockeying for position as they were both trying to force each other into a compromising position. The two saurian kaiju were so focused on each other that they did not even address the fact that Kodoja had returned to the fray until the bio-droid walked up to the entwined monsters and delivered a blow that sent them both flying through the air and onto the beach.

Atomic Rex and Gfantis rolled through the sand of the Jersey shore and they came to stop in the shallow surf of the shoreline. The two kaiju stood up and looked at the invincible bio-droid that had attacked them. The two kaiju roared in unison at Kodoja. The bio-droid responded by leaping at the two monsters and tackling them into the water. The three titans stood up and began attacking each other in a blur claws, fists, and teeth.

Through the computer screen in her bunker, Juliet watched as Kodoja wrapped one hand around the throat of each of the other two monsters. With Atomic Rex secured in his right hand and Gfantis in his left, Kodoja increased the pressure of his grip on the two monsters as he started to force them out back into the ocean. Juliet watched through the eyes of bio-droid who was as much of a descendant to her ancestors as she was as the crescent horn atop of Gfantis’ head began to glow, while at the same time Atomic Rex’s skin exuded a blueish hue. A split second later the screen was nothing but static once more as Gfantis fired his crescent beam in conjunction with Atomic Rex unleashing another blast of his Atomic Wave.

Juliet stared silently at the static filled screen. She coughed and another mouthful of blood splattered across the screen. She tried to input another command that would send more adrenaline running through Kodoja but the command failed. Juliet turned away from the computer, as the lights around her started to flicker and then went out. She realized that the last of the energy that the solar panels had absorbed was gone. Juliet looked at the pitch black darkness around her and she realized that there was nothing more that she could accomplish there. She knew that the area above her was radioactive due to the blast that Atomic Rex had unleashed and that if she was exposed to the radiation that she would not live to witness another sunrise.

She also knew that expediting her death was one of the few mercies that this world could offer her. Juliet took a deep breath, opened the hatch to the underground bunker, and walked out into the radiation filled forest.

She looked in the direction of the ocean and she spoke out loud, “Roughly a mile to the ocean.” She shrugged and looked to the heavens, “Give me the strength to reach the shore. Before I die, grant me the strength to see the corpse of Atomic Rex or the grandeur of the ocean on last time.” Juliet’s head dropped as a prolonged coughing fit stuck her causing her to fall to her knees. She waited for the fit the pass then she stood up with her head held high and she began walking back to the ocean and to the family that awaited her in the next life.

The End

GFANTIS X MARUGRAH

Story by Zach Cole

Author’s note: This entry in the “Gfantis vs” Series features the kaiju Marugrah from the novel Kaiju Epoch: A Kaiju Thriller. It is the second Kaiju story I have written, the first being Tsuchigumo, and is my first full length novel and my first third person story. I don’t think many people know about my books, but even so I keep writing them. And Kaiju Epoch is probably my favorite so far.

Kaiju Epoch follows Will, a troubled twenty-year-old out on his own, who stumbles upon an alien creature named Marugrah. Marugrah came to help Earth defend itself against an alien race known as the Plagueonians, who use Kaiju to clear the planet of life so they can take over. The following story takes place two months after that novel.

1

Washington, D.C.

Will had seen things in his life that had scarred him, but what he saw two months ago was more than he could handle. He had been having nightmares of the things he had seen. Crushed bodies. People eaten, both alive and dead. Cities turned into Hell on Earth. Those nightmares have brought him to where he sat then.

Therapy.

“Mr. Carver,” a voice snapped, bringing him back to the now.

“Uh, sorry,” he said, shaking his head, trying to clear it.

“What were you seeing?” Sheranne McConnel, Will’s therapist, asked. She wore a tight black power suit that accentuated her curves, making Will’s eyes wonder to places they shouldn’t, as he had a girlfriend. Thick framed glasses sat in front of her hazel eyes, her jet black hair tied back tight. She looked like she could be a librarian to Will.

A very attractive librarian, Will thought, mentally shaking the impure thoughts from his brain and focused, answering her question.

“I saw…a creature. One I’ve never seen before rising from the depths and laying waste to everything we have built. The death of hundreds…millions even. Cities turned to ruins,” she said.

Sheranne adjusted her glasses, looking straight at him as she spoke, “And it’s not from the bunch that attacked the Earth two months ago?”

“No. It lacked the armor and alien feel the Vexnoxtuque did. This thing is…terrestrial. But it’s just as dangerous.”

When Will finished talking, he looked up, his gaze having shifted to the carpeted floor, he saw Sheranne writing something on the clipboard she had in her lap.

“Alright, Mr. Carver, that concludes our session for today,” Sheranne announced. “Same time next week.”

Will nodded and got to his feet. With a good bye, he left Sheranne’s office. In no way did he feel better. He knew the nightmares would persist. It was always the same thing he felt when leaving each session. He felt no progress being made. He was still disturbed.

As soon as he closed the door behind him, he was crushed in a hug, making him jump.

“I don’t like you being alone in there with her,” Ashley Singer, his girlfriend, said into his ear.

“I’d never look at another girl like I do you,” Will said with chuckle.

They made their way down the hall, away from Sheranne’s office, and to the elevator at the end of it. The addition of the therapist was recent. With the Kaiju attack, and the alien invasion, many people died, including fellow soldiers in the organization known as the Creature Counter Unit, CCU for short. Many CCU agents were lost in that battle. Those who survived had a hard time dealing with the stress of losing their comrades. So, a therapist was added to the CCU’s employee detail.

The elevator took them up a few floors where their room resided. The elevator doors slid open and they made their way down the hallway to their room. Will slid his key into the lock, about to turn it and unlock the door when a voice stopped him.

“Will and Ashley, please report to the control room, ASAP!” Lance Cole’s voice boomed through the hallway via an intercom speaker.

Will and Ashley exchanged a worried glance and hurried back toward the elevator. They jumped in and took it up a floor or two. The doors slid open, revealing a similar hallway that led to their room, but at the end of this hallway was what was called the Control Room. It was where every mission was coordinated from.

They made their way to the end of the hall, entering the Control Room. Lance Cole, the CCU Director, turned to greet them, standing just inside the door. He was a tall, slender man with slicked back black hair and wore an expensive looking business suit.

“Sir,” Will said with a salute.

Cole rolled his eyes. He hated being saluted.

“We have reports of a creature circling one of our island facilities,” Cole said with a shake of his head.

Will raised an eyebrow and asked, “What does that have to do with us?”

“Everything,” Christina Angel said, stepping from the shadows of the Control Room. “We’re going to investigate it.”

“The whole team?” Ashley asked.

“No,” Cole said. “Just you three. The creature hasn’t threatened the facility. It’s just been…lurking. It doesn’t require lethal force. Just investigation.”

“And if it does threaten the facility?” Will asked.

“I have a feeling Marugrah won’t be too far from you. Not to mention the three Apache attack helicopters that will escort the Black Hawk you’re riding in to the facility. You’ll be protected.”

“Right then. What are we waiting for?”

2

En route to secret island facility…

The roar of the Blackhawk’s rotors filled Will’s ears. They were approaching the island facility. He could see it off in the distance. Will shook his head. Nothing good came from island facilities. He knew from the various books and movies about secret government facilities located on islands.

What is it they are doing here? Will wondered. Making chimeras? Bioweapons?

Will shook the thoughts from his mind.

Focus on what you’re here to do.

The creature…the Kaiju.

He looked out the side door’s window, down into the dark waves of the ocean below for any sign of the behemoth. He found no trace of it, but his stomach muscles were clenched tight. He had a feeling that the creature was the same one from his dream.

He tore his eyes away from the dark, rolling waves and to the person beside him, hand linked in his. Ashley turned toward him with a smile that melted away his tension. She wore black armor, like him, and Angel who sat across from them. The armor worked like Kevlar, stopping bullets, but without bruising the wearer, and it also protected them from sharp objects like knives…and claws.

The elevator descended, them having reached the island while he was distracted. The helicopter landed on a tarmac where soldiers in similar armor to what they wore waited for them. Once the chopper settled on the tarmac and the rotors began to wind down, one of the soldiers stepped forward and opened the Blackhawk’s side doors.

Will stepped out first, sounds bringing his attention to the sky. The three Apaches circled overhead. Will didn’t know if they’d circle the island or stay in the air while they were there.

That’s not what you should be worrying about.

Will brought his eyes back to the ground. The soldier escorted them across the tarmac and toward the facility where a man in a lab coat waited for them.

“Hello there, welcome,” the man said, pushing his glasses up higher on his nose. “I’m Doctor Dennion. Matthew Dennion.” He held out his hand.

Will took the man’s hand and shook it.

“I’m William Carver,” Will said and motioned to Ashley and Angel. “And they are-”

“I’m well aware who you are. You did save Washington, D.C. and the world from an alien invasion after all.”

“It wasn’t just us,” Angel said.

“Ah, yes. Marugrah.”

Will nodded.

“Anyways, on to the matter at hand,” Dennion said, turning toward the entrance to the facility.

The facility was big, but Will couldn’t determine how big as most of it was hidden behind thick foliage. The door to the facility slid open and they entered, the building’s air conditioning chasing away the outside heat of the island. They walk down a bright white hallway, Dennion leading the way. He stopped and opened a door via a car reader about six doors down from the facility’s entrance. The door clicked open and they all piled in.

Will was surprised to find the room looking similar to the Control Room back at the CCU headquarters in Washington, D.C. Rows of computer consoles line the middle of the room. A giant screen sits on the far wall that all the consoles face. It’s unoccupied, besides Will, Angel, Ashley, and Dennion at the moment.

Dennion stepped forward, toward the closest console, and booted it up. Once it was fully powered on, he logged into whatever system they used.

“It showed up a few days ago,” Dennion said, his fingers working on the computer’s keyboard.

“The creature?” Angel asked.

The big screen at the front of the room blinked to life.

“I believe you’d call it a Kaiju.”

Dennion pulled up a video file and pressed play.

The video was shaky, filmed by someone holding a camera or a phone. They were on a beach, presumably somewhere on the island. The recorder had whatever they were filming with pointed toward the ocean. It churns as if something was moving beneath it. Then it parts, revealing spiked back surrounded by lumpy, orange skin. Then, it moved farther out to sea, disappearing beneath the dark waves. The video ended there.

Lumpy orange skin…

“Is that all the video you have of it?” Angel asked.

“Unfortunately, yes,” Dennion replied. “But there have been numerous more sightings since then.”

“Any descriptions?” Will asked.

“Nothing different from what you just saw on the video.”

Will scratched at the stubble dotting his chin. “Where was it last seen?”

“On the east side of the island,” Dennion replied.

“Take us there.”

3

After a short drive through some man made trails cut into the island’s forest via Land Rovers, they arrived on the east side of the island, a sandy beach stretching out before them. If it weren’t for the fact that they were dressed for war and were looking for a giant monster in the ocean, today would have made a perfect day to spend on the beach. The sun was high in the sky, heating up the beach and the water looked refreshing.

But they had other things they needed to attend to.

Will stepped out of the Land Rover, his boots sinking into the sand.

Oh, what I wouldn’t give for a swim, he thought, wiping sweat from his forehead.

They made their way across the beach, toward the water where three zodiac motor boats, like the kind the Navy SEALS used, awaited them. Local soldiers, armed with heavy artillery weapons, would occupy one, them being a safety precaution if the creature got aggressive.

The Apaches are here for that, too.

Another zodiac would be occupied by scientists with monitoring equipment. They’ll try to track down the kaiju and get readings from it. Will knew they’d also try to get samples from it if the chance arose.

I wouldn’t advise that, though.

The third zodiac would house Will, Ashley, Angel, and Dennion, whom are also armed with semi-heavy artillery, minus Dennion. They carried M32 rotary grenade launchers. The launchers fired 40mm rounds from a spring-driven revolver-style magazine that holds six rounds. It’s not as strong as what the soldiers on zodiac one carry, but it would surely get the kaiju’s attention if it goes after the scientists on zodiac two.

They jumped in their respective boats and started the motors, heading out to sea to search for the monster. The sound of whipping winds and churning ocean filled Will’s ears. He scanned the waves, looking for any sign of the kaiju. Seeing none, he turned to Dennion.

“How far out was it spotted?” Will asked, shouting to be heard over the whipping winds.

“Just a little further, Mr. Carver. There is no guarantee that it will even still be there. It was spotted here yesterday. It could be gone by now,” Dennion said.

“Why is it even here? What do you do here?”

Dennion’s eyes darted back and forth, but says nothing.

He either can’t tell me or what they are doing here isn’t what’s considered good… Or both.

The boats slowed, coming to a stop a mile from the beach they departed from. Will watched three of the scientists in zodiac two power up the hand held tracking devices they brought with them. They raised them in the air like someone trying to get a signal on their cell phone while another dropped a sonar microphone into the water, lowering it deeper by the cord it’s attached to, listening to whatever it was picking up through the headphones covering his ears.

Will waited, hoping they’d say they found the kaiju, but instead they looked over to him and the others in his boat with frowns and shake their heads.

Dang it.

The scientist with the headphones on eyes widen. He presses his hands against the headphones, making sure he was hearing what he thought he was hearing. The scientists with the tracking devices turned their attention to the beeping devices.

“What is it?” Dennion shouted.

They didn’t get to reply.

The ocean bubbled and rose up, stumbling Will and everyone in the boats as they were pushed away from the rising dome of water. The dome of water split, raining down on the boats. Will looked up at the creature that just rose from the depths.

Oh man…

The kaiju looked down at them with sinister eyes. It opened its massive, sharp toothed maw and let out a devastating roar. Will shouldered his grenade launcher, but kept it pointed low and nonthreatening. He didn’t want to anger the monster.

“Incredible,” he heard Dennion say.

“You know what that thing is?” Will asked the man.

“I’ve heard stories about a sea monster that has been spotted near the island chain the island our facility is on is a part of. They called the sea monster…Gfantis.”

Will looked up at the monster, taking in its massive form and gasped. He recognized the creature that is known as Gfantis.

It’s the monster from my dream!

Gfantis leaned forward with his massive saurian head, getting a better look at the three boats floating in front of him and the humans occupying them. He eyed the first boat, full of soldiers armed with rocket launchers, but turned away, as if the weapons didn’t threaten him. He scanned the second boat, full of terrified scientists and their weird gadgets. He turned away from them, too, showing no interest in them. Gfantis’s eyes shifted toward Will’s boat, his eyes narrowing. Will could see the anger in the kaiju’s massive pupils.

But why? We’ve not done anything to it!

Will glanced over at Dennion, seeing the man looking nervous and sweating.

Of course…

Gfantis backed up with a roar, bringing one of his massive arms up. The Apaches took it as a sign of aggression, which Will agreed with as the kaiju was clearly about to bring the limb down on the boat. The Apaches opened up on the monster with their M230 chain guns. It stopped Gfantis from crushing Will and everyone in his boat to death, luckily.

“Get us out of here!” Will shouted, turning toward Angel who sat by the motor, seeing a chance to escape.

She started the zodiac’s motor and steered them back toward the beach they departed from. The two other boats followed their lead, speeding away from the battle between man and monster. As they sped away from Gfantis and the Apaches, he watched their fight.

The three Apaches circled Gfantis, firing their chain guns. Seeing that wasn’t doing any good, they switched to their missiles. Hydra 70 mm rockets and AGM-114 Hellfire missiles erupt from hard points located on the chopper’s stub wings. Gfantis’s brows furrowed, the kaiju letting out a roar of anger. He brought his clawed hand up, swatting an Apache out of the sky, taking off the craft’s tail and sending it spiraling into the ocean.

The two remaining Apaches, seeing how easily their comrade was swatted out of the sky, moved out of reach of the kaiju, raining missiles and rockets upon the beast. Gfantis became enraged, clenching his clawed hands into fists as his body shook with barely contained anger. The crescent horn on the top of the monster’s head began to glow. Will gasped as a searing beam of white light shot from the horn, striking one of the two remaining Apaches, which erupted in a ball of fire. Gfantis then turned the white beam on the last remaining Apache, with the same result. Gfantis threw his head back and roared his victory to the sky above.

Then he locked back onto the boats.

Crap! He still wants Dennion…but why?

Will looked back toward the island, seeing the beach ahead another half a mile maybe.

That’s too far, Will thought, looking back toward Gfantis who was wading through the ocean toward them.

“Maybe we should just give it back the youn-” one of the scientists in the boat behind Will started, yelling over the wind.

“Quiet, you fool!” Dennion screeched, silencing the man that was speaking.

“What are you hiding, Dennion?” Will demanded.

Dennion looked unsure, but opened his mouth to speak.

He didn’t get a chance.

A wave slammed into the boat, sending Will, Ashley, and Dennion to the floor of the zodiac. He helped Ashley back to her feet and turned back toward the monster nearly upon them. He shouldered his M32 and pulled the trigger, a 70mm grenade arcing through the air and detonating on Gfantis’s scaly torso. Instead of injuring the beast, however, it only angers it. The soldiers redirect Gfantis’s anger, however, as they open fire with their stronger fire power. Rockets erupt from their launchers, detonating on the kaiju’s chest. Gfantis strikes out a clawed limb, crushing zodiac one, and the soldiers on it, beneath the waves…creating a wave itself.

The wave crashed into zodiac two, throwing the scientists overboard into the ocean. The wave reached zodiac three next, throwing Will, Ashley, Dennion, and Angel overboard. Something solid collided with Will’s head, sending him into unconsciousness.

4

Will coughed, removing the water from his lungs. He felt dry land beneath him. He opened his eyes, finding himself on the beach.

But how? We fell into the ocean.

A tugging on his arm pulled his attention elsewhere. He turned his head toward the tugging to find Ashley trying to pull him up. He shook out of his stupor and, with his girlfriend’s help, got to his booted feet.

The ground shook.

Will craned his head up, taking in the massive form of Gfantis, the monster just steps away from crushing them.

And running won’t change that. It’d only prolong the inevitable.

Will stood his ground, accepting his fate.

“Will! What are you doing?! Come on!” Ashley pleaded, pulling on his arm.

But it was too late.

Gfantis lifted his mighty foot and began to bring it back down. Will closed his eyes, waiting for the crushing embrace of death.

But it never came.

Will slowly opened his eyes, seeing Gfantis toppling backward into the ocean with a splash, revealing another massive behemoth.

Marugrah!

The maroon saurian kaiju looks down to the fallen Gfantis with a snarl. Marugrah doesn’t appreciate the creature attempting to step on his best friend. Marugrah reached down, grabbing Gfantis by his scaly throat. The sea dragon is lifted into the air, confused at what had transpired the last few moments. But as Marugrah brings Gfantis to his face, the sea dragon’s brows furrow and he retaliates, plunging his claws into the side of Marugrah’s neck.

Tugging on his arm turns his attention away from the commencing battle.

“Will! We gotta go!” Ashley urged.

Will complied, following her across the beach and back to the Land Rovers. Ashley hopped in first, with Will following her. With them in, the Land Rovers sped off through the jungle, back toward the facility.

Marugrah roared as pain radiated from his neck where the new kaiju had dug its claws into him. He pushed the monster, which he heard Will call Gfantis, away from him, delivering a kick to the monster’s gut. Gfantis pitched forward, clutching his stomach in pain. Marugrah turned, bringing his club tipped tail around. The club connects with Gfantis’s head, sending the sea dragon sprawling to the shallows of the ocean below with a splash.

Gfantis grew infuriated, launching up from the ocean and biting down on Marugrah’s armored arm. Marugrah roared in pain, pounding on the sea dragon’s head, but he doesn’t release his grasp. Marugrah raises his arm, lifting Gfantis off of his feet, the sea dragon being 100 feet shorter making it an easy task. Marugrah leaned forward, thrusting his arm, and the monster that clung to it, toward the ground, slamming the sea dragon to the earth.

The jarring impact with the wet ground made Gfantis release his grip. His teeth slurp from Marugrah’s armored flesh. Marugrah stood up to his full 400-foot height and raised his foot, slamming it down on the sea dragon’s head…repeatedly.

Marugrah was in full on rage mode.

The creature in front of him had made a fatal mistake trying to step on his… What do I consider him? Marugrah thought. My friend? My best friend?

While Marugrah was a kaiju now, he wasn’t always one. The kaiju from two months ago were the same case. They were once beings that lived peacefully on their own planets…until the Plagueonians, a race of war mongering monsters, arrived, turning them into science experiments… creatures they called Vexnoxtuque. Marugrah, however, willingly turned himself into a Vexnoxtuque in order to save New York City from an attacking kaiju… and later the world. He still thought like the being he was before he was turned, but he fought like a monster. And the serum that allowed him to gain the power to save Earth came with a cost. Madness threatened to take over his mind, turning him against the people he was trying to protect. He fought the encroaching madness, but if it won…the Earth would burn.

He batted away his fury, thinking strategically. The monster before him was equally as smart as him, he could sense it, but something was sending it into a frenzy… something deeper in the island.

Maru! Will’s voice came in his head. Keep Gfantis busy! I know what it wants. We just need time to give it back.

Marugrah looked down at the recovering Gfantis, getting back to his feet.

Roger that, Marugrah replied, and pounced on his enemy.

The Land Rovers skidded to a halt in front of the facility. Will leapt out, whirling on Dennion.

“Care to tell me what the hell you have that Gfantis wants back?” Will growled.

The scientists from zodiac two, though soaked, survived being thrown overboard, hurried into the facility. Two soldiers from zodiac one, survived and followed the scientists.

Dennion twitched nervously and said, “W-we have an egg. W-we found it washed up on the beach! We didn’t know it was his…hers? I’m not even sure it has a gender. But that may be why Gfantis is here. He wants his egg back.”

“We’re going to give it back then,” Angel said, walking up beside Will, her M32 replaced by a M-16 assault rifle.

“B-but-”

“No buts!” Angel pointed her rifle at Dennion. “We are in charge here, not you. Director Cole said so. So you do what we say or you’ll be out of a job.”

Dennion’s face twitched, but he nodded, valuing his job.

“Alright, then. Lead us to the egg.” Angel motioned toward the facility with the barrel of her rifle.

Dennion swallowed nervously and lead the way. On the way through the winding hallways of the facility, Will contacted Marugrah through their mental link.

Maru! Will said. Keep Gfantis busy! I know what it wants. We just need time to give it back.

Roger that, Marugrah replied.

And with that, the link was disconnected.

“It’s in here,” Dennion said solemnly. He stood in front of a door in a white hallway. None of it looks different from the last hallway Will was in before they left the facility and almost died. But, he knew they were deeper in the facility this time.

How does anyone know where they are going in this place? he thought.

Will glanced over at Ashley, making sure she was okay. She saw him looking and gave him a smile.

Yeah, she’s fine.

“Open it,” Angel ordered.

Dennion sighed, but complied, swiping his card over the card reader. It clicked and Dennion pulled it open. They piled in the room…

Looks more like a hanger, actually.

A plain, wide open space stretched out before them, a giant cage located in the middle. Well, it wasn’t giant, but it was well sized. Maybe 50 feet long by 40 feet high. An ovular object sat inside. Its surface was lumpy and yellow in color, with black spots dotting it. Computers sat around it on folding tables. Wires were attached to the egg, monitoring the creature inside.

The baby Gfantis inside…

“How the balls are we going to get that out of here?” Will asked.

“The roof opens up,” Angel observed, looking up at the domed ceiling. “That’s how they got it in here in the first place. We can use the Blackhawk to carry it out of here.”

“Is there really no talking you out of this?” Dennion asked.

“It’s the only way we can get rid of Gfantis. There is no other choice. Plus, it’s not wise to keep a parent away from their kid…” Angel gave Dennion a disapproving glare. She obviously didn’t like that Dennion took the egg in the first place. Her morality found it wrong. “We’re giving the egg back.

5

Marugrah stumbled back as hot flames enveloped him. The attack didn’t hurt him, but he could feel the heat trying to boil the soft flesh under his thick, armored skin. Gfantis cut off his attack, seeing how ineffective it was, snorting in frustration. Before Gfantis could attack another way, Marugrah opened his maw and unleashed his own flames upon his adversary. Unlike Gfantis’s, whose flames were regular colors, Marugrah’s was crackling green, like the fabled Greek fire.

Marugrah’s flames washed over Gfantis, the sea dragon squealing in agony as his flesh bubbled and split. Marugrah cut off his flaming assault, not wanting to kill Gfantis. He just needed to keep it from rampaging through the island to get whatever it was after there.

Gfantis dropped to all fours, shuddering in pain as his flesh split and bled, his skin blackened and burnt…but it doesn’t stop the kaiju from retaliating. Gfantis lunged forward, swiping his claws at Marugrah’s armored legs. Marugrah roared in pain as Gfantis’s claws found softer flesh, drawing green blood. Marugrah clicked out his injured leg, striking Gfantis and sending the sea dragon flying. He lands with a splash further down the beach on his side.

Marugrah stomped forward, his anger growing at being injured, but he forced it away. If his rage overtook him, he’d surely kill the smaller kaiju. The monster known a Gfantis didn’t deserve that, Marugrah knew. It wasn’t a Vexnoxtuque. It wasn’t made to destroy worlds. It was just a creature that was wronged by humans, separated from something precious to it.

As Marugrah reached the fallen beast, Gfantis snapped his head up, a beam of white light erupting from the crescent horn on top of his head. The beam struck Marugrah in his side, sending pain flaring through his body. Then, he was falling, Gfantis having leapt on him. Both behemoths hit the ground, water splashing high in the air and falling on them like rain.

Gfantis leaned forward, his teeth bared, reaching for Marugrah’s throat. Marugrah brought his long tail around, hitting Gfantis in the side of his head with the club at the end of his tail. Gfantis’s head snapped to the side with the impact, but his claws dig into Marugrah’s armored flesh, keeping him from being flung away. With a shake of his head, Gfantis went for Marugrah’s throat again, his jaws snapping closed just feet from the soft flesh.

Marugrah locked his hand around Gfantis’s snout, holding it shut. Gfantis struggled to release himself from Marugrah’s grasp, but the red dragon was stronger than the sea dragon. Marugrah held on, hearing the chop of an approaching helicopter.

Just a little longer, Marugrah thought, willing his friend to hurry up.

After hooking up the cage containing the baby Gfantis egg to carry cabled attached to the Blackhawk, they lifted it out of the hanger and headed toward the beach where Marugrah and Gfantis fought an epic battle.

Will looked out the Blackhawk’s front windshield, standing behind the pilots in the chopper’s cockpit. Marugrah was laying on his back in the shallows, Gfantis sitting on top of him. Marugrah had his hand locked around Gfantis’s snout.

But it doesn’t stop Gfantis from attacking.

His crescent horn glowed, a beam of white erupting from it. Marugrah barely avoided the attack, the beam skimming over his armored shoulder. Marugrah got his arms under Gfantis, shoving upward and throwing the sea dragon off of him.

Marugrah rolled to his feet as Gfantis landed on all fours, like a cat, ocean water splashing around him. Gfantis started forward, about to charge, but stopped. Gfantis rose to his full height, standing on his hind legs as he homed in on the approaching Blackhawk.

But the chopper wasn’t what Gfantis was interested in.

He wanted the egg hanging from the bottom of the chopper.

“Set it on the beach,” Will said to the pilots.

The pilots nodded, following his instruction.

As they neared the beach, Gfantis started forward, probably intending to just pluck the egg from midair. Marugrah, however, knew the consequences of the action and rushed forward, locking Gfantis in place until the chopper set the cage on the sandy beach and detached the cables from it. Marugrah let go of Gfantis, letting the sea dragon reach and pluck the caged egg from the beach as the Blackhawk ascended to a safe height from the monster.

Will watched as Gfantis peeled apart the steel cage and retrieved the egg from within. Will was confused when Gfantis set the egg on the beach and just stared at it.

“We are about to witness a beautiful event!” Will heard Dennion exclaim behind him.

Beautiful event? Will wondered, but quickly realized. The egg is about to hatch!

The red oval wobbled on the warm sand, a crack materializing on its black spotted surface. A piece of shell fell away, pushed away from within. And then another. And another. Something moved within the now partially intact oval. A small head poked out of the hole created in the egg, staring up at Gfantis. It looked like Gfantis, but its features weren’t as pronounced. The horns on its head were nubs. Its teeth smaller, but just as razor sharp as its parent’s. Its eyes were bigger, too, giving it an almost adorable look.

The baby Gfantis crashed through the remains of the egg, stepping onto the beach with wobbling legs and toward the ocean, where its parent stood. It barked at its parent and continued forward, into the salty water.

Will looked to Marugrah, something catching his eye just past his big red friend. What looked to be another Gfantis, but smaller, and curvier, like a female, rose from the ocean. Marugrah took a few steps back, his muscles tensing, ready for a fight.

A fight that never came.

The female Gfantis doesn’t move. The male Gfantis scooped up the baby, making his way toward the female. They nuzzled each other, then the baby, before wading off into the ocean, disappearing beneath the waves.

What now? Marugrah asked.

You’re not going after them, if that’s what you’re suggesting, Will replied. Let them live together in peace.

Marugrah snorted and waded out to sea, disappearing beneath the waves himself.

Will made his way out of the cockpit as the chopper began the long journey back to Washington, D.C.

“That was pretty moving,” Ashley said, wrapping him in a hug.

“I agree,” Angel said, stone faced, sitting in one of the many seats lining the Blackhawk’s cargo bay.

“It was more than moving, it was beautiful!” Dennion said, making his way toward the side door. His brows scrunched in confusion, seeing ocean below. “What is this? You must drop me off back at the facility!”

“Wrong,” Angel said, glaring at the man. “You’re coming back to D.C. with us. I’m sure Director Cole has many questions for you.”

The man swallowed nervously, gravitating back to his seat and sitting down. The nervous expression on the mad scientist’s face made Will smile.

The End

The Squash in Odaiba

A Gfantis Story by Skip Peel

Editor’s Note – This entry into the Gfantis vs Guest Monster series is submitted by Skip Peel! Skip is a frequent contributor to G-Fan Magazine and his Rex Summeral stories are a staple of the G-Fan Kaiju Tales section of the magazine. No G-fan based anthology would be complete without a story by Skip. This story features the kaiju Itara that Skip first introduced in the landmark Daikaiju anthology series!

Though bleak and overcast as any other autumn day in October, the Tokyo skies had offered no rain to quell the still smoldering fires. Along the eastern edge of ground zero, city engineers and emergency responders struggled on to put out the remaining the blazes, though their efforts were growing more clumsy and lethargic as most of them had been striving for 36 hours without break. Japanese dedication and duty kept them going, but nature was catching up, and so slowly some went home to visit their families. In turn, others arrived from handling lesser damages and completed rescues to help. The latest efforts to extinguish these fires involved pumping in seawater from the Bay, but the engineers had not quite managed it yet. Rumors among exhausted firefighters and policemen were that this particular burn off had less to do with underground piping and power lines, but more was caused by the special source of energy which ignited it. Visible among the rubble and bits of framework and girders, there lay a huge, twisted and unrecognizable mass of something organic. A group of men distinct from the city officials, clearly less wearied and protected by hazard suits, were examining this object with their ample gear. Most of their devices were mounted on extended metal poles or hung from wiring and ladders, thereby securing a respectful distance from the blackened and still glowing embers of monstrous flesh.

The smoke from these multiple sources curled high in the sky and seemed to meld with the natural cloud cover of that morning, almost as if land and sky were dancing into each other. Isabella Gabriela Oliveira, followed by her aide, skirted about the chunks of rubble in a pair of flats that she had wisely traded with her usual dressier shoes before leaving the Consulate. Aside from her footwear, her attire remained as professional and as attractive as whenever she would be on State business in Tokyo. A sweeping wind was tearing across the landscape that morning and left the tails of her long fashionable brown coat fluttering. Isabella could not be certain whether this wind was natural to the season or produced in part by the strange fires that had burned for more than a day. Undaunted against its opposing force, she paid little heed when this wind freed her thick golden brown hair from a hastily pinned clasp and blew the full locks behind her. She moved on, further into the heart of ground zero and towards the smoldering organic mass. Her aide stepped forward to speak with yet another set of Japanese police attempting to halt their progress for their own safety, the third such scattered effort by beleaguered officials to keep them out of Odaiba. But the authoritative appearance of their Embassy badges had done more for them than even Isabella expected. Her aide spoke Japanese effectively enough, so he handled the local policemen, while Isabella’s dark eyes scanned the horizon.

Isabella Gabriela Oliveira was her full name, and rolled off the tongue so very easily, even musically, in her native Brazil, but it contained far too many “L” sounds for a Japanese pronunciation. In situations that did not require the dignity of affairs of State, she preferred for the sakes of Japanese speakers that they call her Isa-san, meaning Miss Isa. Such a casual approach never bothered her. It aligned to her own personal and even national tastes, and after all, she was not the Brazilian ambassador, but merely a chief advisor, and could get away with more. Japanese decorum was often willingly set aside to avoid the embarrassment from something even as simple as muddled pronunciation.

As Isabella shuffled out of range from her aide’s conversation with the police, she looked through the swirls and shifting mists of smoke and spied Case Handler Kazuo Tabuchi. He stood still as a statue, hands uncharacteristically in pockets, shoulders hunched and sharp features downward cast in thought. He seemed more gaunt than she remembered him, which may have been age but perhaps too a psychological affect from those challenges he had just endured, or maybe even still was facing. As his features came further into the light, she noticed blackened marks of what may have been soot upon his skin. His suit disheveled was also dirty. His tie flapped in a gust of that same harsh morning wind that in the moment blew most of the smoke aside and revealed behind him more of the desolate landscape of what had once been Odaiba.

“Ah, Tabuchi-san,” Isabella offered in her best, heavily accented English. “I have found you. I thought you might still be here. I had to come.”

Isabella was definitely a polyglot, completely fluent in Portuguese and Spanish, and while she self-criticized her ability with English, she spoke it, though accented, better than many Americans. Yet a talent for Japanese escaped her, and she had found the language extremely challenging, barely achieving any conversational level in spite of courses and tutors. She often found it more practical to switch to English whenever a native Japanese knew any English, and would even throw in bits of Japanese with these efforts. This approach often worked better for her than speaking straight Japanese, though it usually confused her listeners more than she realized, as in the politeness of misunderstanding came those frequent Japanese smiles and nods.

Case Handler Tabuchi spoke English decently, if not exceptionally well. So much world travel had boosted his base study of the language. As he stepped forward towards Isabella, his silent gaze showed that he did not yet recognize her, though she was memorably beautiful to any man half-paying attention. But Tabuchi paid little attention that day. He certainly was not feeling social, especially with a foreigner.

“You don’t remember me, do you?” Isabella asked truly affectionately, but not realizing that her Brazilian bubbliness, especially on a wind swept field of recent battle, was wholly inappropriate to a Japanese sensibility. She had a lot to learn, even in spite of all those cultural sensitivity classes she had been required to take as part of Embassy training.

“No,” Tabuchi answered, half hearted, almost ignoring her, and saying nothing else. It was a response out of despondency, and not from rudeness of even indignation. This man, so accustomed to battle, so seasoned by victory, was mourning his complete and devastating loss in the way he culturally knew how. He also seemed to be waiting for something. His lack of reaction seemed to be a cue to the policemen still conferring with Isabella’s aide that she was accepted and they should not interfere.

Isabella’s mission in journeying onto that scarred and destroyed stretch of Odaiba was foremost in her heart, if not her mind, and while she was there for Tabuchi’s sake, she seemed oblivious to Tabuchi’s feelings in that moment, and continued with a genuine enthusiasm at seeing him.

“I am Isabella Oliveira,” she explained. “We first met at a countermeasures summit in Rio de Janeiro. I was allowed to join with the final expedition as a field operative, my first major assignment that got me into government work, and I was there at the final rainforest battle if you remember that, surely. My older sister is Larissa Oliveira-Santos, who worked then with the Governor’s office, and I think you would remember her. We were both key witnesses. You interviewed us.”

“Ah yes,” Tabuchi absently mindedly responded in Japanese. “That rainforest monster.”

“Yes, yes.” Isabella cried excitedly, but almost painfully. “You interviewed us several times, as we had witnessed the worst attack. The media called it the Chimera Chupacabra of Brazil.”

“That’s right.” Tabuchi echoed dreamily with half a frown that looked like it hurt, “We never did discover the origins of that creature. A true mystery of science from out of the jungles of the past.”

“You first called me Isa-san,” Isabelle recalled, a deep admiration for Tabuchi continuing to be evident. It was a type of admiration that shines quite strongly when seen in the face and mannerisms of a beautiful woman, especially an expressive one. “You said my name was too difficult to pronounce. I always remembered that, and I still use it today.”

“Isa-san. Yes.” Tabuchi said, eyebrows wrinkling with some jog of memory, and he nodded ever so slightly that only a keen watchful eye would have noticed the gesture.

“I work with the Brazilian embassy in Tokyo now,” she explained. “I’ve been here three years.” Here Isabella paused a moment. “It was working with your team, and the Sekiyama Group, but especially you Tabuchi-san, that inspired me to come here to work in Japan when I was offered the opportunity.”

“Yes. Sekiyama.” Tabuchi echoed in Japanese, quite dejectedly.

There was a bit of silence between them as the wind turned and swept the smoke back into their faces. Tabuchi gave a slight cough as they moved together out of it, while Isabella struggled with her maze of hair as it blew in the smoky air, realizing her hair clasp had been lost completely. This wave of smoke seemed to close the curtain behind them as it were, as police and aide disappeared to them, and they walked on alone.

“What happened here?” Isabella asked. “I saw it on the news of course, but they are suppressing most of the video footage to keep the public from panic my own sources say. You saw it with your own eyes. Is it true Gfantis landed in Tokyo at last?”

“Yes. Yes.” Tabuchi nodded.

“They are saying some harsh things, criticizing what happened . . .”

“Yes.” Tabuchi looked skyward at the smoke above them.

“That is why I had to come,” Isabella told him, with a firm tone of serious intent in her voice. “I owe you so much Tabuchi-san. We, my entire country, we are indebted. I had to see if you were okay, . . . if I could be of any help to you.”

Tabuchi said nothing, but gave a strange side-glance towards this Brazilian woman that to him was like a mysterious ghost out of the mist.

“I would have looked you up before now.” Isabella continued. “But you are always travelling it seems. In time, my own job took precedence. I never knew if you were in Tokyo, and your work is more important than mine.”

As Tabuchi seemed disinclined to speak, but willing to walk with her, they strode on together in silence, approaching the site of the burning organic mass. They came there not by either’s choice, but rather by an instinct, as it stood a fascinating focal point amid that scene of devastation. They approached the work site of the survey team examining the hulking object. A closer examination of the logos on their protective gear and electronic equipment revealed them to be from the Sekiyama Group. Each worker they encountered immediately recognized Case Handler Tabuchi, and while they did not engage him directly in conversation, all acknowledged and clearly deferred to him as their superior, remaining busy in their analyses. A thick smell of burnt flesh filled the air, which though harsh, was not entirely unpleasant, yet distinctly strange.

“Is this the Itara?” Isabella asked, raising her hand to her mouth in astonishment.

“Yes,” was all the demoralized Tabuchi could muster in reply.

“What happened here?” Isabella asked again.

Tabuchi gave a sigh of resignation mixed with frustration and maybe even nerves. He walked over to a workstation among the Sekiyama team and picked up a newspaper. It was a copy of the most recent New York Times.

“You speak very good English,” he said to Isabella. Then breaking a bit of ice by repeating her nickname, he asked, “Isa-san, can you explain to me exactly what this headline means?”

Isabella examined the paper. It read:

Gfantis Triumphant in Tokyo! The Solar Nightmare Gfantis Defeats Sekiyama Group’s Kaiju Killer Itara at the Odaiba District in a Total Squash!

Isabella paused and raised an eyebrow.

“What does this mean?” Tabuchi asked, the first sign of passion returning to his voice. “This ‘Squash?’ I thought squash was fruit or vegetable or something.”

Isabella exhaled a deep sigh that blew back against the wind. She was not shy, if even less tactful.

“Well here, they mean that it was a defeat. A sound defeat. A very certain, quick, and complete defeat. Like squashing an insect.”

“Oh, is that so.” Tabuchi sighed in Japanese, his tone again deflating. “I knew it would be so.”

The conversation was interrupted by the hissing of a fire hose, as the Sekiyama team tried to extinguish a part of the gigantic body that was still glowing with the heat of the burn. The two walked a few paces away from the noise.

“I am sorry Tabuchi-san.” Isabella told him. “So very sorry. But I came partly to say thank you, partly to help, and also to say you must carry on! Do not listen to what they say in the news. Ganbatte as they say. You have done so much Tabuchi-san, you must carry on even today!”

“No. No.” he protested.

“What happened here?” she asked, for the third time that morning.

There are moments when a person needs to talk, even the most culturally and socially reserved Japanese person, and in times such as those, often a stranger can be a better confidant than a trusted friend. To Tabuchi, not only was Isabella a gentle, feminine and sympathetic voice, both encouraging and strong, but also she represented a happier time to him. She hearkened back to success, to when he was in good favor, held good face, and was the world’s greatest success regarding kaiju countermeasures. In talking to her, the success of Sekiyama’s Brazilian Chupacabra campaign came back to him, and with that, the confidence of a truly passionate man underneath it all.

“Isa-san,” he began. “I told them, I told them all along. If Gfantis came, if Gfantis ever touched the mainland, or if against our hope in the heavens that monster ever was drawn to Tokyo, we could not win. I have refused other countries before.”

“Refused?” Isabella asked.

“Yes, as the creator and expert trainer of our greatest clone for kaiju countermeasures, the Itara, I am chief Case Handler for Sekiyama Group’s International Enterprises Division. With this title, I am given final say on what cases we take with Itara and which we refuse. We strive to keep it out of the press, but we have refused Russia, Canada and even America as regards to Gfantis. That monster is too powerful. I knew him to be beyond the Itara’s ability to defeat him. Itara is lithe, as I had it explained to me once in England, a monster flexible with dexterity and strong with grappling and clawing power. But he is designed for mid-range kaiju combat. Gfantis is too . . . well, fantastic as his name indicates. He is beyond our science. Beyond our understanding to deal with him. Trying is like tampering with the fabled fires of the gods. I cannot defeat him, and I knew the Itara could not win.”

“Then why did you choose to fight?” Isabella asked.

“I could not refuse my homeland.” Tabuchi cried, the pain on his face the most obvious in that moment. “I could not say no, and had I tried, I knew I would be fired and replaced. This time, as had been long feared, Gfantis would invade Japan, and intelligence pointed to the worst at Tokyo. We had to try to fight. If Itara was to face his fate against Gfantis, I knew I must be with him.”

“And so the Itara,” Isabella summed up, “That monster which saved my people, and so many others across the globe, he was then killed here?”

“Yes.” Tabuchi spoke, much as one might answer about the death of a child.

“It is very sad to me Tabuchi-san.” Isabella responded. “I am sorry about it, and it is hard for me to believe. Your monster was majestic in battle the day I saw him defeat the Chimera Chupacabra in the rainforest, swinging trees and tossing large stones as weapons, and finally winning his victory by dragging that awful monster into the river.”

As Isabella recounted these memories, a great pride, nearly a thrill, seemed to shine from her face. There was passion in her voice that the smoky wind of that morning could not abate.

“How? . . .” she began.

But Tabuchi had stepped away, separating from the noises of the Sekiyama crew, the firefighters off to the east them, and the worst of the patches of smoke. He beckoned to her Japanese style, like a cat waving its paw, and so she followed him for a few minutes, up a small hill of excavated dirt, a rare high spot in an area so very flat. From this vantage point, most of northern Odaiba and its devastated landscape was in view before them in a vast, wide vista.

“As you may know,” Tabuchi began, speaking in a fluent sort of English technical jargon that came easily to him when dealing with international clientele, “this part of Tokyo Bay, Odaiba, was man-made by my country long ago. But only in the past twenty years was it developed into the famous district of the capitol it became with Aqua City, all the shopping, malls and entertainment. The monster prediction networks were saying the same information, and it also became the government position, that Gfantis would land in Tokyo at last. We knew through studying his previously observed movements he would certainly land through Tokyo Bay. If so, would he land west at Shinagawa, immediately devastating the city? And if he went east and hit near Tokyo Disney, there lies a stretch of coastline that we could not pinpoint any spot that offered a strategy. We actually hoped for Odaiba because we needed the open acreage here, as it afforded us an easy battlefield where with Itara, we could make our stand.

“Please understand Isa-san, that I only had four days to prepare for Gfantis, and that under terrible conditions. Fortunately we were on this side of the world already with him, dealing with a sea serpent infestation south of Fiji. Upon word from Tokyo, we dropped everything immediately and sailed here, but I had only four days to prepare my exhausted monster.

“While Gfantis possesses powers I feared, the biggest concern as always was his much larger size. I needed more time, but I gave Itara as much steroid growth hormone as we thought reasonable and safe, and then added some more. This worked quickly, and as he grew during the voyage he nearly outsized our cruiser. But it wasn’t enough. Gfantis’ mass would still be three or more times that of Itara. I should have known there were would be no contest. But we were desperate. I had to fight regardless.”

“How did you grow the monster larger?” Isabella asked. “He was about 25 meters when I saw him last.”

“We had done it twice before,” Tabuchi explained. “Once with an unbelievably large troll and again with a sort of Kraken in the Norwegian Sea. They grow the monsters bigger farther north it seems. A massive dose of a proprietary growth hormone will increase Itara’s mass up to thirty percent, but only for the time it is actively administered, then he reverts to his regular size. I never liked to do that, and considered it dangerous, so it would only ever be an emergency type of measure, and this was an emergency. Such rapid growth cannot be healthy for any creature, and I am guessing it may have shortened Itara’s lifespan. Still, he is a unique bioengineered clone, so our studies had been ongoing, and now with this destruction, I will never know the true effects of those forced growth spurts. If you will remember, Itara was a genetic combination of tiger, gorilla, and alligator. One of the worst aspects of bioengineering those size shifts were the weight concerns. If I were to remake him, though transport would be an major issue and increase costs, I would consider making him even larger, perhaps adding some structural skeletal components from a rhinoceros into his genetic mix to deal with the weight. But then he would lose speed and dexterity, so it is a give and take.”

“How large did Itara get by the time of the battle?” Isabella asked.

“Almost 35 meters,” Tabuchi explained, “But Gfantis is 55 meters, so he towered over Itara. Based on films I had seen of Gfantis, I had no true strategy other than to attack the neck area directly and hope Itara, using his claws and teeth, could tear into the jugular, that is . . . if Gfantis even has one. So little is known of him.”

Tabuchi sighed as Isabella waited.

“That is where Gfantis landed,” he continued, pointing to a southwestern corner of the artificial island. “It was a hard decision to clear with my superiors to not engage him first outside of Tokyo Bay. While Itara can swim effectively, and as you saw in his battle in the Brazilian Rainforest River, he could hold his breath for a very long time. But Gfantis has been observed to be also deftly agile in the water, and can submerge for even longer. We waited here on dry land and in a clear area where there were few buildings, and to our good fortune he did land at Odaiba, almost I believe as if he could sense Itara’s presence. He came out of the water and promptly stepped on the bathhouse that used to be over there.”

“Oh,” Isabella cried, noticing a smashed scattering of wooden beams in the far distance by the shore. “I loved that onsen.

Now Tabuchi grew in excitement as he began to recount the grittiest details of the battle, and he stood taller and thrust his chest forward. “Itara wanted to take him. It was all I could do to hold him back with a ready signal until I thought Gfantis was effectively in a target position. We were watching from a mobile aerial unit that was keeping a constantly safe distance but also direct line of sight with the battle. Once Gfantis was out of the water and standing still enough, sizing us up, I unleashed my weapon upon him. In one of his last grand and glorious moments, Itara sprung forward with such a snarl, and leapt up into the face of Gfantis, and began tearing into him!”

Here Tabuchi paused.

“And what happened?” Isabella demanded.

With a sigh, Tabuchi continued. “Gfantis was too strong. Itara could not even break his tough reptile hide. Very angry now, Gfantis grabbed him by the throat and like Itara was but a child, threw him hard to the ground.

“It was such an impact, I knew something was wrong immediately. Itara was favoring his shoulder as he rolled and then scurried back to regroup. The impact where Gfantis slammed him left that hole in the ground you see over there. I did not know what to do but maybe try to knock Gfantis off his feet. That attempt failed, for when Itara grabbed his leg, he could not move that greater mass when Gfantis shifted in defense. Then with a mighty forearm swing, Gfantis hit Itara and sent him flying further back inland, near to where we are now.

“I will admit I panicked. I had no strategy then, as almost all our previous victories came through clawing, grappling, drowning the other monster, or a delivery of a poison package or other superweapon that only Itara could handle. We had no weapon against Gfantis. Itara was it, and none of our other battle strategies we quickly learned could work against the overpowering nature of this monster.

“Our two attacks had roused Gfantis’ fighting instincts. He charged our monster, and out of self-preservation I signaled Itara to retreat. An idea came that maybe he could lead Gfantis out of the city and away from Tokyo. But the bigger monster was between my monster and the sea, and so Itara scrambled to get away, and I foolishly led them both into the entertainment complexes of Odaiba.

“Itara was quicker, but his growth hormone treatments had affected his locomotive skills and his synapses and muscles were not firing as quickly as usual. Normally he would have bounded away to safety, but this Gfantis was nearly keeping pace. They came upon that giant Gundam statue that was so very famous. Itara dodged around it like a tree, and jumped a few paces past it into one of the shopping malls. That statue confused Gfantis I think, as he snorted at it, and passed by with what seemed a dismissive roar, but at the last moment his mighty tailed lashed out, and the giant Gundam robot came crashing down.

“Itara raced through the streets of Odaiba, around hotels, restaurants, and exhibit halls, while Gfantis more lumbering, smashed each and every building underneath him to get at his enemy. With a most mighty bound, Itara leapt to what he though was safety on the Daikanransha . . . you know that big Ferris wheel?”

“Ah yes,” Isabella replied, looking towards where it used to be. “It was so very pretty lit up at night with so many colors and designs.”
“Well, it toppled under Itara’s weight. But my monster was strong, so I thought he could use it as a weapon, and I signaled via my remote transmitter to give him a tool and weapon response. As Gfantis lumbered closer, Itara hurled that Ferris wheel, three times his size, with both arms. Like a spinning disk it struck Gfantis in the belly, but not with much impact. Crashing at his feet, Gfantis stomped it into oblivion, and then . . . I noticed the crescent horn on his head began to ignite with a glow.

“I ordered an emergency dodge command just in time, for that blast of solar radiation came tearing out from Gfantis’ head just as Itara leaped away. You can see there to the west where the energy blast from that attack tore a stretch in the ground several hundred meters long; most of it still on fire.

“All seemed lost now to me Isa-san. My commands to Itara worked on a combination of basic animal training signals chemically hardwired into his brain. After seeing the power of that blast, I hit the emergency retreat command with everything I had. Itara didn’t know where he was going, just that he was running for his life. He sprinted back to the northeastern part of the island, and headed onto the Rainbow Bridge at full speed. This unfortunately as you know, would have led him directly into the heart of urban Tokyo!”

“Oh my, indeed.” Isabella cried, so into the story she instinctively grabbed onto a small cross necklace she always wore, usually tucked beneath her designer blouses. She now pulled it out and ran her thumb along it as she listened.

“But though Itara ran,” Tabuchi continued, “Gfantis was on the hunt for what he took as a hated enemy. They reached the Bridge in the same moment, and Gfantis grabbed Itara’s rear leg while in mid-bound. Itara clung to the suspension cables of the bridge, but as Gfantis pulled him, that metal would not hold, and snapped as you can see. It didn’t destroy the Bridge thankfully, but my poor monster, so much lighter than his opponent, who had such great strength, Gfantis hurled Itara with an incredible momentum I didn’t know was possible. Itara flew through the air across the northern shores of Odaiba, completely over that shopping mall, which you can see still standing, and my Itara . . . he crashed directly into the Fuji TV building with such force, the entire structure came down on top of him!

“I thought he was dead, but my heart rose with delight when I saw my creation struggle free from that rubble. But he was hurt, bleeding, an arm clearly broken now, and in such a daze he could barely move. He stumbled aimlessly towards the western shore, right to where you see he fell. Out from the rising cloud of the debris, I saw a glow. It was Gfantis’ horn charging with solar power again, and as the monster stepped forward into my own full view, . . . well, I hit every button I could to fire every chemical and instinctual trigger I could give Itara. None of it worked, and there may have been a neurological overload, for Itara screamed a death roar, saddening my heart, just as a massive onslaught of that solar cosmic radiation arced halfway across Odaiba and tore into Itara. He fell immediately to the ground, the force of the blast pushing him through the dirt several dozen meters, and with the intensity of that firepower upon him for what seemed like minutes to me, though it may have only been seconds, his body burst into an inferno of flames, that perhaps thankfully, killed him immediately so his death agony ended quickly. He died where you see him, burned into nothing recognizable, killed by Gfantis’ cosmic solar power from heaven, his corpse still smoldering after two days. And that was the end.”

Case Handler Tabuchi, a scientific and technical man, could prove quite poetic, or so Isabella thought, when discussing the spectacular demise of his beloved cloned creation.

“And what happened to Gfantis?” she asked.

“Oh yes,” Tabuchi added, as if jogged awake. “He gave a snort, looked around as it were, and then promptly returned to the Bay and headed out back to sea.”

The wind had died down just a bit, enough to be less harsh and more musical in its affect on the psyches of both Tabuchi and Isabella. Nothing needed to be said for a time, but eventually Isabella broke the silence.

“So what now?”

“I fear there is no ‘what now.’” Tabuchi told her.

“There is always a ‘what now,’ Tabuchi-san,” she argued. “But you tell me what you mean.”

“My career is over,” he said, “I have allowed a monster into Tokyo where it has destroyed billions of yen in property, only to walk out again at its own will. I have let a multi-billion yen asset of my Sekiyama Group be annihilated and lost. I have brought shame to myself, my family, my employer, and my country. I will surely be fired. I have lost face. I am in the most great disgrace. I have been ‘squashed’ as the Americans have put it.”

“No, no, no.” Isabella demanded, “You cannot talk like this. You have to carry on. You have to continue your work.”

“I will be fired Isa-san.” Tabuchi said with almost a tear, his head held low. “I am shamed.”

“They would be fools to fire you!” she replied angrily. “And even if they did, you could have a job anywhere in the world in any country with any bioengineering firm or kaiju countermeasures program. No one cares what the papers in America have said, or in your own country here for that matter! You are the best in world at what you do, and that is destroying big dangerous monsters that hurt people. You have to keep doing that! And for as long as you can!”

“No, no Isa-san.” Tabuchi humbly protested.

“Tabuchi-san!” Isabella nearly shouted, actual tears running down her cheeks, “The Chupacabra ate my brother! Do you understand! I saw it with my own eyes! I will never get over that, and I can never bring him back! But you are the man who gave me some peace! You killed that monster and kept it from ever harming anyone else in my country. You saved lives that day! And you have been doing it all over the world for years, over and over again!

Tabuchi looked at Isabella with deep feeling in his eyes, the brow furrowing on his smudged face. He was giving his full attention to her for the first time that morning. She wiped away more tears as she gathered herself and continued.

“Don’t let the monsters win Tabuchi-san! Even if they beat you down, don’t ever let the monsters win.”

Tabuchi was about to speak when he looked up and noticed a few dozen paces away a group of men nicely dressed in suits to be walking towards them. Isabella followed his gaze and quickly wiped her last tears away and checked herself, adjusting all the wild wind and intense conversation had displaced of her blouse and dress, and tucking the cross necklace back into its usual place.

“Representatives from Sekiyama Group, including my boss.” Tabuchi explained quickly, “And I’m guessing some more officials from the government, these higher up the chain of command. Well, Isa-san, here it comes.”

Case Handler Tabuchi stood up as if he were in the military and expecting a dishonorable discharge. Isabella backed up a few paces out of respect. The exchange that followed was entirely in Japanese, but Isabella understood most of it.

“Case Handler Kazuo Tabuchi!” said one of the foremost men, with that extremely clear air of purely dignified, Japanese matter of fact business.

“Yes boss,” Tabuchi answered, bowing to him very low.

“Before we settle any company business,” the Sekiyama executive explained, “There is someone here who wishes to speak with you in person, right here now in the field.”

“Yes sir!” Tabuchi replied, again bowing.

From the rear of the group, and out from behind two large gentlemen that were clearly bodyguards, appeared no less than the sitting Prime Minister of Japan! Tabuchi kept his bowing position, but his eyes nearly popped out of his head, and he bowed even lower. Isabella immediately recognized the Prime Minster as well, and took another two steps back in further deference.

“Kazuo Tabuchi,” the Prime Minister began, “on behalf of myself, my family, but most especially on behalf of all the people of Japan, we wish to thank you for your service to your country. Your work has saved us.”

“Ah,” was all Tabuchi could muster, which the immediate consternation on his face showed was an involuntary noise he did not quite choose to utter.

“You sacrificed a most valuable asset,” the Prime Minster continued, “Indeed your company’s most valuable asset was laid down to protect our capitol and spare the people who could not be evacuated from inner Tokyo. You lured the monster here to Odaiba, where all had been evacuated, and where only there are businesses and enterprises, but no homes. By putting up this fight, by showing our resolve and resistance through the efforts of your monster, you repelled our threat back to the sea. You kept Gfantis from the heart of Tokyo at all costs, and for that, the people of Tokyo and Japan most deeply thank you. Kazuo Tabuchi . . . very well done!”

All this was spoken with authentic feeling, and the Prime Minister then bowed to Tabuchi in return. The Head of State even seemed to bend forward a tad lower than was his customary bow, enough so that everyone there who was Japanese noticed.

Tabuchi might have passed out from shock, but he weathered it, though perhaps less so than one of his kaiju battles. The official thanks now completed, the attitude of the men became more casual. As they mingled, Tabuchi heaved a sigh, and turned to Isabella, giving her thankful and most obvious nod. She ventured forward enough to touch his arm in encouragement, which in that Japanese social environment, was as good as the biggest hug.

About then a large truck pulled up towing a flatbed. Still smoldering pieces of the flesh of what had once been the Itara clone were chained atop as cargo. It was not discernable what pieces of the monster they once were, though some of it was a probably claw and part of the forearm. Others might have been internal organs or just pieces of hide. The smoldering gave off a glow, even in the noonday sun that had just barely broken through the heavy cloud cover. The sunlight even appeared to increase the effect of luminescence.

One of Tabuchi’s technicians humbly approached him.

“Sir, I know you are busy,” he ventured. “But we have to get you to sign off on this. We recommend, all of us, getting these pieces back to our labs and in a secure and sterile environment as soon as possible.”

Tabuchi took the papers and clipboard the tech was offering and began to look over it. “Why so?” he asked. “What’s the hurry?”

“The radiation sir!” the tech whispered, though Isabella could overhear it. “We are getting massive readings of cosmic radiation coming from some of the Itara’s flesh. It’s almost like these cells are now sources of solar power. They are giving off an intensity we don’t understand. And . . .”

“And?” Tabuchi inquired.

“The flesh, the cells, they are somehow still metabolizing and reproducing. What isn’t burned to a crisp, those are the parts charged with the solar radiation . . . those parts are still alive!”

Tabuchi said nothing, but his eyes grew even wider than before. He hastily signed the paper, and shoved it back to the tech, who scurried to the flatbed truck, which he immediately drove away.

As Tabuchi turned back to mingle with the Prime Minster and executives from Sekiyama Group, he adjusted his tie and looked once more toward Isabella as she waved goodbye and left to find the aide who had come with her from the Consulate.

Case Handler Tabuchi finally gave a smile, and it was a meter wide.

The End

The References: Wrath of Gfantis

Story by Matthew Dennion and Mark Dennion

Art by Brian Parsons

Author’s Note – The following story features the superheroes from Mark Dennion’s novel the References! Mark’s novel is published by Elephantine Publishing and it is available on Amazon. You can follow Mark on Facebook and on his web page www.markdennionbooks.com

The References are a team of superheroes whose powers are based on their abilities to use their mastery of the components of the English Language to battle bad punctuation, the use of slang, yellow journalism, and crime. The References are comprised of: The Human Dictionary- A yellow and blue clad hero who can define any word. Atlas, a young man with the ability to navigate to any destination in the world. Thesaurus Rex, a Tyrannosaurs with the brain of human who can only communicate in strings of synonyms. The Guardians of Grammar have triumphed over wrongdoers such as the Wu-Slang clan and villains like the libelous Lexi -Con but how will they fare against the Prince of Monsters and his corrupt chronicler?

It was early in the evening but the moon shone bright overhead and it cast an eerie glow around the city. Outside of the city zoo, two of its greatest protectors huddled together near one of the employee entrances to the establishment. Atlas, the hero of headings, looked at his friend and fellow crime fighter the Human Dictionary, “Are you sure that we want to involve Thesaurus Rex in this? I mean, I think that we can handle this guy by ourselves. If we are looking to be stealthy having a thirty-foot dinosaur moving through the city might draw unwanted attention to us.”

The Human Dictionary smiled, “Attention! Noun- Notice taken of someone or something; the regarding of someone or something as interesting or important: At least, that’s the definition of the manner in which you used the word in your question. The answer to your question, is an emphatic yes! The scoundrel that we are going to take down today has written more libelous articles about Thesaurus Rex than nearly any other celebrity on the planet. He deserves to the be there when we put an end to this evil editor!”

Atlas shrugged, “Okay then. Let’s go get the big guy.” He reached into his hallowed satchel and pulled out a map of the zoo. He glanced at it quickly, “Follow me. I have already found the quickest route to his pen and if we are going to do this then time is of the essence.”

The Human Dictionary nodded, “Essence! Noun – Absolutely critical or crucial. You are correct so let’s get moving.”

The Human Dictionary followed Atlas through the zoo and as promised the directionally inclined hero brought them to the pen of the zoo’s star attraction in under three minutes by following the fastest route. The zoo was closed and the moonlight was only illuminating the very center of the pen. The dynamic definer called out to his friend, “Thesaurus Rex, are you there?”

The ground shook as a massive saurian head and leg stepped out of the shadows. With a second step, the entire body of a thirty-foot-long T-rex stepped out in to the moonlight. The dinosaur still had the shreds of lab coat around his tiny arms. The clothing was a reminder to Dr. Sinclair O’Nim that while he had the body of one the greatest predators to ever walk the planet that his still possessed the mind of a brilliant scientist. The dinosaur looked at the two heroes and said, “Friends! Associates! Comrades!”

The Human Dictionary called out to the Cretaceous Carnivore, “Sly Lyson has finally come to the city. Do you want to help us put an end to his phony tabloid ravings?”

Thesaurus Rex looked down at the newspaper clipping that filled his pen. He then looked at his friends and smiled, “Absolutely! Unconditionally! Categorically!”

The Human Dictionary nodded, “Categorically! Adjective – Without exceptions or conditions; absolute; unqualified and unconditional.” The hero walked over and opened the gate to the therapod’s pen. Thesaurus Rex stepped out of his enclosure and roared with such ferocity that it shook the ground and caused all the other animals in the zoo to respond in kind.

Atlas comely pulled a map of the city from his satchel, “I have already determined the most expeditious route to Mr. Lyson’s office. His office building is directly on the harbor. The shortest route there is one and three fourths of a mile from our current location. If we hurry, we can catch him as he is leaving it and heading for his car.”

Thesaurus Rex bent down and said, “Climb! Scale! Ascend!” The other two heroes climbed onto the dinosaurs back. Atlas shouted, “Through the front gates, and then take a left of Lees street!” Thesaurus Rex ran out of the zoo as Atlas continued to shout directions at him that led the three heroes to office of Sly Lyson.

The trio of heroes, who the media had dubbed the References, arrived at the offices of tabloid editor Sly Lyson just in time to see him opening the door from his building. The editor had a disheveled look about him as if he was in a rush and afraid of something.

Lyson was running toward his car when Thesaurus Rex roared! Lyson stopped dead in his tracks and he looked in the direction of the therapod. When Lyson saw the dinosaur he breathed a sigh of relief.

Thesaurus Rex yelled at Lyson, “Stop! Cease! Desist!”

Lyson began laughing as he looked at the Human Dictionary, Atlas, and the imposing form of Thesaurus Rex. The editor chuckled, “It’s only you guys and your pet dinosaur! When I heard that roar I really got worried. I thought I had run out of time to skedaddle!”

The word skedaddle no sooner left the editor’s mouth then the Human Dictionary was hit by a wave of vertigo. He was falling to the ground when Atlas reached out and caught his friend. Lyson starred quizzically at the besieged hero, “What the heck is wrong with you?”

The Human Dictionary shook his head to help reorient himself, “The slang word that you used. I can’t define slang. Whenever I hear a slang word, it temporarily drains me of my abilities.”

Lyson laughed, “That part about you becoming weaker when someone uses slang is true?”

The Human Dictionary quickly perked up, “True! Adjective: Being in accordance with the actual state or conditions; conforming to reality or fact; not false.” With the act of defining the word true, the Human Dictionary regained his strength. “Yes, that is true but that is the only true thing that you have been printing about us and nearly every other story covered in your poorly edited tabloid.”

Lyson looked nervously at the harbor, “Listen, I have a family. I do what I need to do to pay the bills and put food on the table. If I don’t report the “near news” then you better believe that somebody else will- like that new reporter at The Chronicle, Tabitha Lloyd. Face it, you are celebrities. Who you are and what you are is no longer personal. You belong to the public. Just be grateful that certain laws won’t allow the media to share your secret identities,” Lyson finished.

“Threat, warning, intimidation?” questioned the wordy dinosaur.

Again, Lyson stared out into the harbor. “If you want to try and sue me for libel we can talk about it later. Right now, I have to get out of here and so should you.” The editor took a step toward his car when Thesaurus Rex’s foot came crashing down in front of him. The therapod looked down at him and said, “Listen! Attend! Heed!”

The Human Dictionary placed his hand on the editor’s shoulder, “We are not here to sue you. We are here to point out the error of your ways. You need to understand that as a newspaper editor and reporter you are a conduit of truth for the people. Society relies on you to inform them of the events that shape our world. When you purposefully print articles with fabricated information it negatively affects society’s ability to understand events that are occurring around them.”

Atlas stepped forward, “In other words, we are here to point you in the right direction so that the information you are supplying to world doesn’t lead them astray.”

Lyson took another quick look at the harbor. He felt a desperate urge to flee the area that had nothing to do with the heroes who were confronting him. He tried to placate the References so that they would let him leave. “Okay I get it. No more half-baked articles about how Thesaurus Rex is in talks to star in the Jurassic World sequel or how Atlas is the best person to buy a map to the homes of the stars from.” He tried to push his way past Atlas to get into his car, “Can I please go now?”

Thesaurus Rex leaned down toward the man, “Misunderstanding! Confusion! Misinterpretation!”

The Human Dictionary nodded, “Misunderstanding! Noun: A failure to comprehend something correctly! We have already explained to you that it’s not just the false stories that you are printing about us that is the issue. It’s all the stories you are printing. For instance, your stories about a giant monster swimming around the world and fighting other beasts is widely believed by the public!”

Lyson shook his head in disbelief, “You mean Gfantis? Look all of the stories I have written about him are true! He is a real-life kaiju and even more than that one of my reporters was looking into a claim that Gfantis was seen of the coast of the city. I had her take a helicopter out to check on the claim and she says it’s true!” The editor was so nervous that he began to laugh, “Don’t you get it? Gfantis is on his way here! He will be entering the harbor at any moment! This city is about to be destroyed by a kaiju!”

As in response to Lyson’s statement sirens started to wail from the docks. The References and Lyson turned toward the harbor to see a massive swell of water moving toward the city. The water rushed over the docks and flooded the street which ran parallel to the water. A gargantuan head with a crescent shaped horn at the top of it rose out the water. The creature roared as it lifted its body into an upright position and its full fifty-five-meter height. A dark shadow fell over the docks as the sheer bulk of Gfantis blocked out the moonlight. Gfantis looked at the city he was about to ravage with disdain as he took his first step out of the water.

Thesaurus Rex replied, “Kaiju! Monster! Creature!”

The Human Dictionary defined what he was looking at, “Kaiju! Noun – A giant monster, particularly such as those common to Japanese science fiction films, like Godzilla or Gamera.” He then shook his head, “I can’t believe it. That thing is six times larger than Thesaurus Rex. It will cause the deaths of countless people if it reaches the heart of the city.”

Atlas quickly pulled a map and a highlighter out of his satchel. He highlighted a route on the map and then he handed it to Lyson, “Follow the route I have highlighted. It is the quickest way out of the city.”

Lyson was in the process of taking the map from Atlas when the ground shook as Gfantis took another step into the city. The monster then roared and the windows of Lyson’s office building shattered from the overwhelming sound of the monster’s call. The editor scrambled into his vehicle and he yelled at the Human Dictionary and Atlas, “Get in the car! We have to get out of here!”

The Human Dictionary shook his head, “No this is our city. The people here are our responsibility. We need to try and buy them some time to evacuate.” With that statement, The Human Dictionary, Atlas, and the mighty Thesaurus Rex started walking toward the quickly approaching Gfantis.

Sly Lyson didn’t argue with the References. Instead he sped away in his car. As he was fleeing, the tabloid editor took one look in his review mirror to see a giant clawed foot come crashing down into the city. He could see the References jump in front of the kaiju’s foot and he shook his head in sorrow when he saw that even the fully grown dinosaur could not reach Gfantis’s ankle.

“So, what’s the plan?” Atlas asked.

“Simple,” The Human Dictionary began, “He is there. We are here. The city is behind us. We have to keep what’s in front of us in front of us and what is behind us behind us.

“I don’t suppose that the monster will leave town just because I hand him a map of how to do so. Do you have any suggestions of keeping the city and the monster separate?”

“Still working on that. Maybe if we-”

The conversation was cut off by a roar that was so deafening that the two heroes were nearly knocked over by it. Only the call did not come from on front of them, but rather behind. Thesaurus Rex sprinted past his two comrades, jumped on the monster, and dug his dagger-like teeth into its foot. Gfantis roared in pain.

“Well, that’s one way to get the ball rolling,” The Human Dictionary commented.

Thesaurus Rex began to scale the monster- biting and digging in his claws as he climbed. The dinosaur wordsmith looked more like a movie velociraptor on the back of an enormous Tyrannosaur rather than a thirty foot monster.

The Human Dictionary and Atlas ran toward the monster’s foot in attempts to do whatever they could to stop the monster.

Lyson continued to watch the action of the fight from his rear view mirror as he fled the town. As he drove, he switched on his recorder and he began composing his next story, “Recently, there have been sightings of a group of individuals calling themselves the References. This group has been moving through the city and battling crime as well as the misuse of the English language. People have been unsure of how to define these individuals. Today the kaiju known as Gfantis entered our city and he was met not by the military, or some giant robot, or a scientific super weapon. The only opposition that stood between Gfantis and the city where a man who can define any word, a man who can give you directions to any destination, and a dinosaur who speaks in strings of synonyms. Regardless of the outcome of their battle, The References’s stand against Gfantis has defined who and what they are to our city. From now on, when the people in the city look up The References they will see the following definition: The References! Noun- Heroes.”

The Intruder

By Erik Glascoe

Hello. I’m Erik Glascoe, the author of “The Intruder” which features my Kaiju bat creature. He came from a saga I’m currently writing for FanFic.net. The first part of the Saga is called “The Awakening”. It’s about a destiny, love, revenge and a certain king of the monsters. In this saga my bat kaiju is named by the UNKCC or United Nations Kaiju Countermeasure Center as Megachiradon. I felt that I couldn’t put his name in this story because UNGCC didn’t discover him yet. This story takes place months before the saga I have been writing. When I heard about this project on Facebook, I was curious if my bat creature Megachiradon could take on Gfantis. I hope you will enjoy this story and enjoy my upcoming Saga!

The Intruder crashed down to Earth like a huge meteorite, creating an enormous crater. It sent a massive plume of dirt and debris flying through the atmosphere. The shockwave of this impact felt like a 1,000 pound general purpose bomb detonated on Earth. As the dense cloud of dirt settled, a low rumble caused the ground to vibrate. Suddenly a winged talon appeared on the edge of the enormous crater and the gigantic creature pulled itself out of the hole it created.

The creature shook the remaining dirt and debris off his muscular body. He resembled a fruit bat in the face. The beast had a bone crest-shaped like a ‘V’ on the top of its head. His body and chest were covered in a bristling golden fur. There were two massive tusks poking out beneath its jaws. Its bat-like wing span was at least 200 meters from wing tip to wing tip. The bat creature stretched its wings and body. It stood tall at 300 meters. He was gigantic, muscular, and deadly. He was from a planet of the Ryuuedo, which means blade of the dragon in Japanese.

The bat creature’s mission was to scout the Earth, test the planet’s defenses, and to create chaos in preparation for the incoming invasion force. The creature was a war beast, created by the Ryuuedo scientists. Their ruler, King Mio the third, was a cold-hearted, ruthless dictator. He rose to power by invading neighboring planets and corrupting their Royal Chamber members to enforce his evil methods of rule. When his mystical advisor came to him with a frightening vision of a Terran or an Earthling ruling the Ryuuedo people, the king quickly decided that the Earth needed to be destroyed. His first act toward this end, was to unleash the bat the creature on the Earth to weaken it while he prepared his invasion force to destroy the planet.

The bat kaiju’s head swerved from side to side as he surveyed his surroundings. The monster came to realization that he was on an isolated island formed from a volcanic mountain range somewhere in the Pacific. As far as his enhanced senses could tell, there were no humans within over thirty miles of his current location.

While the beast was unable to sense any humans he was able to detect another lifeform on the island. This other lifeform was something huge and powerful just as he was. This other lifeform represented both a challenge and a threat to the bat creature. The kaiju’s biological programing instructed him to seek out this threat and to eliminate it. The massive bat galloped on his talon-winged knuckles in order to gain the necessary speed to launch himself into the air. As the creature galloped he could feel the wind filling his powerful wings. The creature roared and then spread the fleshy appendages allowing them to catch wind and lift him into the planet’s comfortable atmosphere. The kaiju’s home planet’s atmosphere wasn’t as rich as the Earth’s but it had few advantages such as lighter gravity. Still despite the increased gravity of the Earth, the colossal bat felt as nimble and agile as did on Ryuuedo.

It took a few minutes of aerobatic flying to get used to the planet’s gravity. Once he felt comfortable flying on this new planet, the bat creature started to search for the presence of the possible threat. Suddenly, out of nowhere, a large beam of yellowish white nearly hit him near as he flew past an empty magma flow track. The bat creature’s head swerved in the direction of the blast and instantly he spotted the threat.

Beneath him was a bipedal creature that stood roughly 150 meters tall. The kaiju was covered with armor like skin that had the appearance of enforced magma. This creature had been named GFantis by the Earthlings. Gfantis’s skin was deep red with black stripes that were accentuated by yellow spots on his back and sides. His underbelly was a display of various shades of yellow. The deepest yellow was on the center of his chest and as it fanned out across his body it took on a lighter hue.

Atop of Gfantis’ saurian head, sat three bone colored horns shaped like a triangle, with larger horns on the top on the skull. The larger horns curved outward from the beast’s head wreathing his face in sharp edged bones. His nose bridge, contained at third forward-facing crescent-moon shaped horn. Gfantis raging eyes were reminiscent of the dragons of legend such as Smaug and Fafnir.

The war bat screeched at the kaiju below him, then he landed with a loud thud that shook the ground. The bat creature shook his body and stood up on his hind legs raising his body to its full height in an attempt to intimidate the dragon creature. Gfantis’ nostrils flared in wait of an attack. The Prince of the Monster’s stiffened his hind legs in preparation to either sprint forward or dodge an attack. The gigantic bat creature spread his wings expanding his body to the fullest in one last attempt to frighten Gfantis.

The golden dragon roared in frustration at the strange monster that had dared to invade his territory. Gfantis lowered his head and charged toward the bat creature. The winged kaiju easily side stepped the charge and in one fluid motion he also slashed the Earth defender on its back with his winged talons. Although the slashing didn’t penetrated Gfantis’ magma-like skin, the force of the impact caused his knees to buckle.

Gfantis was surprised by the strength of this unknown intruder. He realized that needed to be smarter in planning his attacks. Gfantis threw his body to the ground where he started to dig fast, creating a tunnel. Gfantis could dig through the volcanic chambers beneath volcanoes. The kaiju’s tunneling ability gave him a unique advantage against other monsters. When Gfantis realized he was beneath the bat creature, he changed direction and began clawing his way toward the surface.

Gfantis exploded from beneath that bat creature and attacked him with a ferocity that was befitting of his title as Prince of the Monsters. The attack was both quick and well placed as it caused the intruder to lose his balance and fall face first on to the hard volcanic earth. Gfantis shifted his body as he prepared to lunge at the creature and end its existence when he realized that his attack wasn’t nearly as effective as he had thought it was.

In flash of fur and fangs, the bat creature stood up on his wing knuckles and shook his head. Gfantis crawled facing the intruder and aggressively roared toward the bat winged creature as his mouth began to charge up and fill with flames. Some of the balled flame spilled out of the corners of his serrated toothed mouth, instantly liquefying the rocky terrain below him. Gfantis exhaled deeply, causing the flame to grow even larger. When he released the flamed charge, it created a vacuum around the blast and with a loud swoosh, it traveled swiftly to his target. The plasma blast hit the bat creature square in the center of his chest. The impact caused the invader to fall backward to the forward face of the volcano.

The gargantuan extraterrestrial lifted himself off the ground as he shook off the annoying creature’s fiery blast. A loud slicing sound split the air as two of the bat creature’s outer winged talons grew larger. The alien hissed at Gfantis as he unsheathed that weapons that he would use to cause chaos on this world. The bat monster then charged full speed on all fours and suddenly hopped into the air. Then the bat creature’s body began to contort as it bones and muscles bent themselves until the kaiju’s entire form took on the shape of an aerial bone drill.

The bat creature struck Gfantis with enough downward force to shatter a mountain. The impact was brutal; the mass of the bat creature along his great speed, penetrated the left shoulder of Gfantis’ magma-like armor. Blood sprayed like Yellowstone’s Old Faithful, causing the solar kaiju to scream in pain.

Gfantis placed his right claw on the bat creature’s chest then he pushed the abomination away from him. Gfantis’ whole body seemed to be glowing, as it recharged itself with the power of the Earth’s sun. Within a few seconds of absorbing the sun’s power, the wound on Gfantis’ shoulder had cauterized itself. The Prince of the Monsters unleashed as ground shaking roar as he stood on his hind legs. He then lowered his head and stared at the intruder with fire in his eyes. Gfantis waited for a brief second, then charged at the bat creature and wrapped both of his claws around the intruder’s throat. In an exhibition of immeasurable strength, Gfantis lifted the bat creature off the ground and throat-slammed him so violently that the entire island shook.

The shockwaves created by the repeated slamming of the bat creature were strong enough to trip earthquake sensors. The geologists on the nearby Hawaiian Island’s would notice the tripped sensors but they would pay them little head. They knew that the area where the shockwaves were originating from was Gfantis’ territory and that to intrude upon his island was akin to committing suicide.

Gfantis ceased slamming the bat into the ground and he increased the choke hold on the creature’s neck as he lifted the intruder to his eye level. As they stared into each other’s eyes with hatred the intruder growled loudly in spite of Gfantis’ grip. The creature’s growl was different from the challenges that he had hurled at Gfantis before. This growl was a low growl that was growing in pitch. The slowly growing pitch signified the charging up the bat’s special oral blast. Suddenly the growl attained a subsonic pitch. Gfantis’ ear canals felt as if they were ready to burst from the pressure of the sound wave. Gfantis released his grip unwillingly, causing him to stagger backwards. The disoriented golden dragon shook his head furiously and groaned in agony.

The bat winged creature regained its footing while continuing to attack Gfantis. Suddenly plasma particles began forming around the bat creature’s mouth. The particles appeared to be sucked into his enormous gaping jaws. As if by magic, plasma lightning appeared in the intruder’s mouth. The alien inhaled and exhaled quickly, resulting in an intense sonic beam directed toward Gfantis. The beam hit Gfantis’ chest, causing him to spin violently.

The initial impact knocked out the valiant defender. The bat creature roared in victory as he stomped his talons like he was dancing. Victory was his. Suddenly, he felt a strange urge as if he needed to fly to far away this place, as if to say there’s a suitable mate somewhere in the galaxy.

The bat creature looked at the unconscious Gfantis; he was going to be out cold for quite some time. He snorted as if he was satisfied with his victory, and charted his course in the direction of the land of the rising sun, Japan. Gfantis, very briefly, caught a glance of the intruder leaving and the Monster Prince solemnly vowed someday to rip the bat creature into pieces. But now, it was time to rest and let the sun heal his wounds.

The End

The Intruder

By Erik Glascoe

Art By Neil Riebe

Hello. I’m Erik Glascoe, the author of “The Intruder” which features my Kaiju bat creature. He came from a saga I’m currently writing for FanFic.net. The first part of the Saga is called “The Awakening”. It’s about a destiny, love, revenge and a certain king of the monsters. In this saga my bat kaiju is named by the UNKCC or United Nations Kaiju Countermeasure Center as Megachiradon. I felt that I couldn’t put his name in this story because UNGCC didn’t discover him yet. This story takes place months before the saga I have been writing. When I heard about this project on Facebook, I was curious if my bat creature Megachiradon could take on Gfantis. I hope you will enjoy this story and enjoy my upcoming Saga!

The Intruder crashed down to Earth like a huge meteorite, creating an enormous crater. It sent a massive plume of dirt and debris flying through the atmosphere. The shockwave of this impact felt like a 1,000 pound general purpose bomb detonated on Earth. As the dense cloud of dirt settled, a low rumble caused the ground to vibrate. Suddenly a winged talon appeared on the edge of the enormous crater and the gigantic creature pulled itself out of the hole it created.

The creature shook the remaining dirt and debris off his muscular body. He resembled a fruit bat in the face. The beast had a bone crest-shaped like a ‘V’ on the top of its head. His body and chest were covered in a bristling golden fur. There were two massive tusks poking out beneath its jaws. Its bat-like wing span was at least 200 meters from wing tip to wing tip. The bat creature stretched its wings and body. It stood tall at 300 meters. He was gigantic, muscular, and deadly. He was from a planet of the Ryuuedo, which means blade of the dragon in Japanese.

The bat creature’s mission was to scout the Earth, test the planet’s defenses, and to create chaos in preparation for the incoming invasion force. The creature was a war beast, created by the Ryuuedo scientists. Their ruler, King Mio the third, was a cold-hearted, ruthless dictator. He rose to power by invading neighboring planets and corrupting their Royal Chamber members to enforce his evil methods of rule. When his mystical advisor came to him with a frightening vision of a Terran or an Earthling ruling the Ryuuedo people, the king quickly decided that the Earth needed to be destroyed. His first act toward this end, was to unleash the bat the creature on the Earth to weaken it while he prepared his invasion force to destroy the planet.

The bat kaiju’s head swerved from side to side as he surveyed his surroundings. The monster came to realization that he was on an isolated island formed from a volcanic mountain range somewhere in the Pacific. As far as his enhanced senses could tell, there were no humans within over thirty miles of his current location.

While the beast was unable to sense any humans he was able to detect another lifeform on the island. This other lifeform was something huge and powerful just as he was. This other lifeform represented both a challenge and a threat to the bat creature. The kaiju’s biological programing instructed him to seek out this threat and to eliminate it. The massive bat galloped on his talon-winged knuckles in order to gain the necessary speed to launch himself into the air. As the creature galloped he could feel the wind filling his powerful wings. The creature roared and then spread the fleshy appendages allowing them to catch wind and lift him into the planet’s comfortable atmosphere. The kaiju’s home planet’s atmosphere wasn’t as rich as the Earth’s but it had few advantages such as lighter gravity. Still despite the increased gravity of the Earth, the colossal bat felt as nimble and agile as did on Ryuuedo.

It took a few minutes of aerobatic flying to get used to the planet’s gravity. Once he felt comfortable flying on this new planet, the bat creature started to search for the presence of the possible threat. Suddenly, out of nowhere, a large beam of yellowish white nearly hit him near as he flew past an empty magma flow track. The bat creature’s head swerved in the direction of the blast and instantly he spotted the threat.

Beneath him was a bipedal creature that stood roughly 150 meters tall. The kaiju was covered with armor like skin that had the appearance of enforced magma. This creature had been named GFantis by the Earthlings. Gfantis’s skin was deep red with black stripes that were accentuated by yellow spots on his back and sides. His underbelly was a display of various shades of yellow. The deepest yellow was on the center of his chest and as it fanned out across his body it took on a lighter hue.

Atop of Gfantis’ saurian head, sat three bone colored horns shaped like a triangle, with larger horns on the top on the skull. The larger horns curved outward from the beast’s head wreathing his face in sharp edged bones. His nose bridge, contained at third forward-facing crescent-moon shaped horn. Gfantis raging eyes were reminiscent of the dragons of legend such as Smaug and Fafnir.

The war bat screeched at the kaiju below him, then he landed with a loud thud that shook the ground. The bat creature shook his body and stood up on his hind legs raising his body to its full height in an attempt to intimidate the dragon creature. Gfantis’ nostrils flared in wait of an attack. The Prince of the Monster’s stiffened his hind legs in preparation to either sprint forward or dodge an attack. The gigantic bat creature spread his wings expanding his body to the fullest in one last attempt to frighten Gfantis.

The golden dragon roared in frustration at the strange monster that had dared to invade his territory. Gfantis lowered his head and charged toward the bat creature. The winged kaiju easily side stepped the charge and in one fluid motion he also slashed the Earth defender on its back with his winged talons. Although the slashing didn’t penetrated Gfantis’ magma-like skin, the force of the impact caused his knees to buckle.

Gfantis was surprised by the strength of this unknown intruder. He realized that needed to be smarter in planning his attacks. Gfantis threw his body to the ground where he started to dig fast, creating a tunnel. Gfantis could dig through the volcanic chambers beneath volcanoes. The kaiju’s tunneling ability gave him a unique advantage against other monsters. When Gfantis realized he was beneath the bat creature, he changed direction and began clawing his way toward the surface.

Gfantis exploded from beneath that bat creature and attacked him with a ferocity that was befitting of his title as Prince of the Monsters. The attack was both quick and well placed as it caused the intruder to lose his balance and fall face first on to the hard volcanic earth. Gfantis shifted his body as he prepared to lunge at the creature and end its existence when he realized that his attack wasn’t nearly as effective as he had thought it was.

In flash of fur and fangs, the bat creature stood up on his wing knuckles and shook his head. Gfantis crawled facing the intruder and aggressively roared toward the bat winged creature as his mouth began to charge up and fill with flames. Some of the balled flame spilled out of the corners of his serrated toothed mouth, instantly liquefying the rocky terrain below him. Gfantis exhaled deeply, causing the flame to grow even larger. When he released the flamed charge, it created a vacuum around the blast and with a loud swoosh, it traveled swiftly to his target. The plasma blast hit the bat creature square in the center of his chest. The impact caused the invader to fall backward to the forward face of the volcano.

The gargantuan extraterrestrial lifted himself off the ground as he shook off the annoying creature’s fiery blast. A loud slicing sound split the air as two of the bat creature’s outer winged talons grew larger. The alien hissed at Gfantis as he unsheathed that weapons that he would use to cause chaos on this world. The bat monster then charged full speed on all fours and suddenly hopped into the air. Then the bat creature’s body began to contort as it bones and muscles bent themselves until the kaiju’s entire form took on the shape of an aerial bone drill.

The bat creature struck Gfantis with enough downward force to shatter a mountain. The impact was brutal; the mass of the bat creature along his great speed, penetrated the left shoulder of Gfantis’ magma-like armor. Blood sprayed like Yellowstone’s Old Faithful, causing the solar kaiju to scream in pain.

Gfantis placed his right claw on the bat creature’s chest then he pushed the abomination away from him. Gfantis’ whole body seemed to be glowing, as it recharged itself with the power of the Earth’s sun. Within a few seconds of absorbing the sun’s power, the wound on Gfantis’ shoulder had cauterized itself. The Prince of the Monsters unleashed as ground shaking roar as he stood on his hind legs. He then lowered his head and stared at the intruder with fire in his eyes. Gfantis waited for a brief second, then charged at the bat creature and wrapped both of his claws around the intruder’s throat. In an exhibition of immeasurable strength, Gfantis lifted the bat creature off the ground and throat-slammed him so violently that the entire island shook.

The shockwaves created by the repeated slamming of the bat creature were strong enough to trip earthquake sensors. The geologists on the nearby Hawaiian Island’s would notice the tripped sensors but they would pay them little head. They knew that the area where the shockwaves were originating from was Gfantis’ territory and that to intrude upon his island was akin to committing suicide.

Gfantis ceased slamming the bat into the ground and he increased the choke hold on the creature’s neck as he lifted the intruder to his eye level. As they stared into each other’s eyes with hatred the intruder growled loudly in spite of Gfantis’ grip. The creature’s growl was different from the challenges that he had hurled at Gfantis before. This growl was a low growl that was growing in pitch. The slowly growing pitch signified the charging up the bat’s special oral blast. Suddenly the growl attained a subsonic pitch. Gfantis’ ear canals felt as if they were ready to burst from the pressure of the sound wave. Gfantis released his grip unwillingly, causing him to stagger backwards. The disoriented golden dragon shook his head furiously and groaned in agony.

The bat winged creature regained its footing while continuing to attack Gfantis. Suddenly plasma particles began forming around the bat creature’s mouth. The particles appeared to be sucked into his enormous gaping jaws. As if by magic, plasma lightning appeared in the intruder’s mouth. The alien inhaled and exhaled quickly, resulting in an intense sonic beam directed toward Gfantis. The beam hit Gfantis’ chest, causing him to spin violently.

The initial impact knocked out the valiant defender. The bat creature roared in victory as he stomped his talons like he was dancing. Victory was his. Suddenly, he felt a strange urge as if he needed to fly to far away this place, as if to say there’s a suitable mate somewhere in the galaxy.

The bat creature looked at the unconscious Gfantis; he was going to be out cold for quite some time. He snorted as if he was satisfied with his victory, and charted his course in the direction of the land of the rising sun, Japan. Gfantis, very briefly, caught a glance of the intruder leaving and the Monster Prince solemnly vowed someday to rip the bat creature into pieces. But now, it was time to rest and let the sun heal his wounds.

The End

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gfantis vs Sade vs Bubbles Dawn of Pity

Story by Aaron Rebaza and Christopher Conde

 

 

Aaron Rebaza

 

[ Hello! If you don’t already know me, which the probability of those chances are next to nothing, I am an ecstatic daikaiju fan, especially knowing that one day I can create more exposure for my own projects that are inspired from tokusatsu-styled films.

It’s great being in a community of people who share the same interests, and this feeling has truly been expressed these past few years. But besides the weird part of the community, I love this feeling of openness I can have with fans who share similar tastes. My interest has always been in bringing back great aspects of cinematography, such as in the Daimajin series, and sense of scale with the respects of great miniature work ranging throughout Japanese film history.

I think that everyone has the ability to mimic these great attributes and apply it to their work, but give it their own unique spin. I also believe that these films had truly given me a different perspective on film, and in regards to these wonderful directors of legendary monsters, I can help bring about a new generation of the old tokusatsu daikaiju genre. However, it all starts off with small steps, and a helping hand.

Thank you for reading, I am grateful for an opportunity to collaborate on this very fun project featuring Christopher’s and my own creations that we hold to heart. Now to see them go up against the likes of Gfantis! We hope you enjoy!   ]

 

Christopher Conde

 

Heya! I am Christopher, but many know me as Chickenman. The kaiju genre has been a large part of my life for a long time and it makes me happy to be part of such a friendly group of sci-fi fans.

 

I got hooked on giant monsters as a child when I watched Godzilla Against MechaGodzilla one night. The story was fantastic and the very concept of these large creatures living in our defenseless world interested me greatly. Over the years I viewed a massive amount of giant monster flicks, eventually causing me to work on my own kaiju and stories. I tend to create more outgoing monsters, unique creations whose light-hearted nature were inspired by television shows such as Zone Fighter and Ultraman. My favorite creation of all is of course Bubbles, the average goldfish who pilots a giant 95 meter mech suit.

 

I hope you enjoy my work, I had fun writing and collaborating and hope to inspire others to get cracking on their own kaiju characters!

 

SADE BIO:

Quentin Trent is a private investigator working under the Denver Police Department with his latest case being a victim of suspected murder-- Andy Warren. After a late night of following false trails throughout the city, Quentin drives his way home to stumble upon a burning heap of what seems to be a ship foreign to Earth.

Inside, lies a man, like no other-- an alien.

Quentin is given a suit worn by this alien, and with the dying words of the alien, his intent is to use it to finish what the alien has not yet succeeded in doing. The power of the suit is the expansion of electrons and restructuring of molecules to make him as tall as buildings. Given prior knowledge from the alien species, it is come to light that there are other aliens within the government with malicious intentions. To make matters worse, giant monsters already inhabit Earth.

 

BUBBLES BIO:

 

Bubbles is a overgrown common goldfish who grew after being a lab rat for Dr. Moor, a scientist/inventor trying to make a shrink serum. After growing to a extraordinary size, Darwin Oranda Moor decided to make full use of Bubbles. He constructed a mech suit for his fish so he may protect the earth against kaiju threats. However, instead of helping him, Bubbles killed Darwin and declared his independence. Bubbles now wishes to dominate the earth so he can eat as many fish flakes as he pleases.

 

 

 

 

 

CASE REPORT: Oversized Fish Food Sprinkled Across Damaged Newly Leased Storage Units and Warehouses.

 

This… this was the case for me. I just knew it! It was meant for me, destined for my very specialty -- private investigation.

 

The very essence of hard research and detective work… finding out the cause of fish flakes entering and leaving a warehouse. How galvanizing, how invigorating to prepare one’s self for physically demanding aptitude! It’s not like there’s a kaiju out on the loose a few towns down, no.

 

It had been given to me the week before my time to hand in background searches and recent purchase records of a, seemingly idiotic, teen who had threw away thousands to run away with her boyfriend. Usually, a case like this requires nothing more than a little profiling and on-the-surface research. If I had a larger income every time -- no, I take that back. Almost all clients who consult me have never cared to do the, rather easy, digging that I do on the daily.

 

The best part of my job? When the real baddies come in. When the real calls come on, when I don the suit. The suit, given to me by an extraterrestrial being, rearranges electrons and expands my human proportion to that of Godz-- er --  a non-trademarked character that is very, very, big.

 

One thing to note, however, is that, I live by a moral code. To which I never use the suit, unless absolutely a necessity.

 

One thing I’ve learned over the years, actually, I don’t know what I’ve learned. But the moral code I live by, still stands. Rarely does the time come to rise to the challenge, pun intended. And hopefully it remains that way.

 

4:56 PM – Main and Oakland

 

I had followed these fish flakes for quite a while, and discovered something, rather, intriguing. I had been going in circles for two hours! My face grew long as I wiped my face in disappointment. Hundreds of people walked by as I gawked in awe at stupid oversized fish food. I pull up my phone, slicing my fingers on the cracked screen. You’d think a job like this pays for your phone plan.

 

Then it happened, what I didn’t expect to happen in all my years. An army of stray, and domesticated, cats came running down the street in one single filed line. Then my mind connected the two amongst the smell of cat urine. Cats, giant fish flakes, destroyed warehouses, my mind clicked. I need to get off that heartburn medication!

 

But this was no hallucination, I stood my ground as cars began to hop slightly from an impact only something that likes an entrance could make. Water rushed in like a flood, soaking my pants.

Ripping away at the pants, my Sade suit had glinted through by the glare of the sun. My helmet folded over my head and clicked shut. “HUY!” I seemed to had yelled from my voicebox in the helmet compartment. That’s not right, I had this issue all week. When I would have to announce the area to evacuate, my voicebox could only spew out the awful sound “HUY!” in a loud mannerism. Or even, the smallest grunts can come out to “HUY”.

 

5:10 PM – Main and Betton

 

I suited up, my suit clenching to my skin. The cool air rushing through my body from the air filtration cooling system. I slammed my belt and began to tower above the city buildings. I could see further out into the distance, and was shocked at what I saw heading my way.

 

In the faded distance, a giant round tank of water sitting on a mechanical body had limped its way towards me. Its body looked like that of crane parts and spare car parts. Rusted, and creaky, it lunged towards me with a burning claw waiting to tear into me.

I prepared myself, looked for civilians to make sure I wasn’t killing anybody today.

 

Then it really hit me, like, the claw. I stumbled back onto what seemed to be a bush, but it is in my giant state that I forget trees are not shrubs. They poked and stabbed my back with prickly hateful branches. I pulled myself up and gave the mech a “what gives?” gesture.

 

The tank of water that sat upon the mech body carried a goldfish inside. A giant, derp-eyed, deranged, fish. It snarled at me, almost with a small snicker of achievement. I began to question the heartburn medication even more.

 

‘Bubbles’ was the name on the mech’s plating. What a cute name I thought as I was tossed across the street. I’m really not feeling this fight. A goldfish? I stood up now, confident. Back leaned shoulders puffed. I shot my finger out at him, waving it saying “No.”, but then I remembered.

HUUUUUYYYY!!” shouted my helmet.

Bubbles became upset, picked up a tree and smashed it on my head a couple times to get the message through.

As I sat on the streets, feet out in front of me, head splitting with a migraine, I could feel the earth moving again, this time stronger. I began to feel my incompetence surging through my body. Beat down by a fish.

 

Bubbles seemed to take his cross-eyed gaze off of me, his head looked up past me. Letting out a muffled roar, Bubbles clouded his tank with air bubbles. And with that, he stormed off past me and slammed against something else. Being a curious giant defender of earth, I got up and began to sniff my way over there.

 

Good god! Gfantis, the infamous monster known for pillaging cities and reducing the population to devastating levels of insecurity, had picked up the poor little bugger and flung him with the flick of his hand. Gfantis looked smug for what he had done. Who did he think he was? I marched up to Gfantis and pulled out my devastating sticky bomb. With one hard smack to the face, Gfantis seemed unfazed by this, the impact of the explosion clouded his face and he hadn’t flinched the tiniest bit.

 

I placed my hands on my hips, “Well, I’ll be. That usually works”, I thought to myself.

 

Gfantis crossed his arms. What more did he want? I had no more utilities on my belt. On a regular day, my belt was brimming. Today I turned up empty. And Gfantis didn’t wait around for me to check, because I was already tossed far into Avalon Lane.

 

Gfantis charged Bubbles, who, to be quite honest, seemed to enjoy watching Gfantis pummel me. The muffled underwater chuckle was odd coming from a seemingly unintelligible animal. Or so I pondered. At this point, Bubbles was ready, stood his ground and took the impact of the raging bull. Bubbles slid further down the streets, still holding the weight of a clawing Gfantis. Bubbles snarled at Gfantis through his tank (who knew fish could do that) forcing air bubbles through his mouth. Bubbles placed his foot around Gfantis, did the merengue dance around him, and slammed him over his shoulder. I was impressed by Bubbles’ strength. I finally picked myself off the floor and walked over to the chaos. I looked for any civilians in the area, my job was to minimize damage and costs of damage during an event of city disturbance. But I have to stop these two before I end up getting the blame for city destruction.

 

The sun began lowering, which isn’t good for me. Low visibility makes for a harder job. The two were clawing at each other like two teenage girls slap boxing. I intervened and shoved them in opposite directions. Bubbles’ tank was starting to reflect most of the sun into my eyes, and I think he noticed too. A devilish goofy grin grew on his fish face. With the raise of his shiny metallic claws, he directed the sunlight right into my eye. I held up my hand as the claw glinted in the sunset. Just then, a big heap of air rushed out of my chest as a raging Gfantis tackled me into the air and threw me on his back. I was now a ball in this sick game of catch. Gfantis gave Bubbles a look of mutual sentiment, and Bubbles returned that look. I winced as I knew what was happening. With the swing of his bulky, scaly, arms, I was thrown backwards onto Bubbles’ steel hooks. My back squished into his hookshot. Unfortunately for them, I had tricks up my sleeve. A quick instinctual jump off his hookshot was enough to yank his whole body forward. I gave a big ol’ smack right in the face to an unexpecting Gfantis. Bubbles picked himself up and ran for the coast. Gfantis shoved me back and chased after Bubbles, leaving a fiery trail behind him.

 

6:30 PM – Boston Logan International airport

 

It got intense now, for me at least, I could only imagine how much fat I burned off running to the airport. The bad part about this whole ordeal was that it had leaked into the airport. Bubbles became dramatic now, expressing more emotion than any other kaiju I’ve ever seen. He had torn off aircraft engine covers and tried to wear it as a cape. He knocked down all the U.S. flags and kicked the wings of each plane in sight. Patriotic. He took one foot and stepped on the boarding bridge, with one confident chin (tank?) to the sky, he roared in quiet fish victory. Gfantis stomped forward, rolling up his invisible sleeves. I leapt forward, smashing the floor, hard, I grabbed Gfantis’ tail. He slowed down, but came to look down at a guilty man-giant holding him back. Still holding on, I was swung erratically from left to right and every direction possibly conceived. I finally gave in and rolled on the ground, letting go of the massive spiked tail. A glorious stomp revealed Gfantis was proud of what he had accomplished, and so forth he continued.

 

“I got a bone to pick with you” shouted Gfantis’ eyes.

 

Bubbles turned around with a face molded in disgust. I had to warn everybody of the impending destruction of the airport, so I had shrunk down to normal size in front of the airport and ran inside as quick as I could. People had already been screaming and running the opposite direction that I had just ran through. I rushed through police and civilians, heading to the second floor. The escalator pushed me to a completely evacuated floor now. I sprinted down the long hall as I looked through the huge window to see Gfantis smacking Bubbles in the head with a plane, which had been crumbling like a cookie every hit Gfantis gave it. I rushed through the fire exit and ran as fast as I could through the runways. I gave myself enough space and shot back into my larger form.

 

As I began to grow larger, a mechanical foot tripped me, face first, into a plane, inhaling plumes of smoke. The engine had blown in my left eye as I screamed, “HUUUUYYYY” in pain. I sloppily slid into a laid out dead position. I didn’t want this job anymore. My arms managed to pick myself off the floor, but midway came Bubbles falling onto me, crushing me into the cement. I had to wait until the damn fish got off my crooked spine. I was getting enraged at this point. I shot up, dusted myself off and pointed my finger at them, waving it back and forth as if scolding a dog.

 

“HUUUUYYYYY!” I furiously swore at them.

 

They stood and stared at me for a few seconds, then resumed their destruction.

I took the plane’s wing and shoved it against Gfantis’ soft underbelly and pushed him further out to the water. If I could get them both in the water, I could stop this path of chaos. Gfantis’ pathetic reach could only scratch so far past the wing I was shoving him with. I laughed as Gfantis squirmed about in front of the wing. I kept advancing towards the coast. But my eyes started to squint as a bright glow began to erupt from his crescent shaped rhino horn. One minute I was holding onto the wing, the next I’m flying backwards as a convulsion in my body occurred after a gathering of heat blasted my abdomen inwards.

 

I was done. I laid in my own debris and failure. My body ached, my stomach churned from the blast. I couldn’t get up. Gfantis roared in anger and didn’t feel like the job was finished. I could hear him stomp towards me, a repulsive smell came with him, a stench of dried blood accompanied a wounded monster. His hot breath lingered over mine, a puff travelled up his chest and out his nostrils as he picked me up. My body now laid limp as I wrapped around his arms. He brought me higher into the air, ready to send me down into the earth. But someone stomped in front of Gfantis -- Bubbles.

 

“BLOOP BLOOP BLOOP, masterfully said the giant goldfish mech. It stood unfazed by Gfantis’ presence.

 

Gfantis dropped me to the side. Bubbles didn’t give him any chances, he tackles him, gets the higher ground and pushes Gfantis into the ground. He slowly aims his right arm, a click is heard and his torpedo gun arm goes stiff. Suddenly, smoke fills the scene as harpoons rapidly fire from Bubbles and stab into the fleshy chest of Gfantis. Gfantis fires his horn at Bubbles, causing him to be blinded and forced backwards. Gfantis stands up, dusts himself off, and pulls out the harpoons from his body. Now a distance away from each other and amongst a partially damaged city, Gfantis and Bubbles stare each other down.

 

‘But Big Champ Sade isn’t done with these two’, I pride to myself.

I urge myself to stand up fully now. The blood has been soaked up by my suit now, creating a drag in the material.

 

The final showdown, I had 5 minutes left to kill both of these kaiju. I grabbed my head and shook off the debris from my helmet. Bubbles saw me up now, he charged towards me headfirst, his derpy eyes growing further apart as I took ahold of his tank-head and directed him in the opposite direction. A confused Bubbles now charged off into the distance, not really questioning if he was even close to hitting me, whatever.

It was Gfantis and me, alone. I stood in my defense position and got ready to block his hits. Gfantis, however, kept looking confused at how far off Bubbles kept going. I walked up to where Gfantis was standing and looked off to the distance.

 

We both cupped our hands around our eyes to see Bubbles slightly circling around now and heading towards the coast. He skidded to a halt and tried to balance himself at the tip of the ledge. I walked over to him and gave him the push he needed. Bubbles flipped around and lost his footing on the edge, and as he turned and fell into the sea, he gave me a look of great sadness, years of deserved life, great knowledge, and a derpy cross-eyed look. But got up right after to realize the water only went up to his knee joints. Bubbles stared at me, his eyes, sort of, coming together, became furious. He attempted to swing directly in my face, but I swiftly grabbed his arm and pushed it back towards him, smashing a large hole in the bottom of his tank. He gobbled and screamed in shock, that I would attempt such an act, gave me the “you’re a jerk” look and flopped into the sea accompanied by large heaps of water pouring out of his tank.

 

I now turned to face Gfantis, who by this time, was walking off into the distance. I screamed as loud as I could to intimidate him. Still walking away, he shrugged off my “Huy”, his tail dragged, he was done with me. I scratched my head nervously, was that all? I really didn’t know what to say. My badly bruised arm just hung limp at my side, I looked up to the sky and sighed, what would I tell the office now? I then directed my attention down below me, trucks smashed, cars turned to dust, planes sliced up, planes upside down, fire spreading, cranes tossed. I turned to see Gfantis heading back towards the bay. Before he dipped his head into the waters, he turned to look at the destruction and then to me. I looked at him amongst the burning heaps of planes and buildings. He motioned his head to his back and I hastily accepted. I shrunk down onto his back and he dipped his head into the rough waters. Slicing through the waters, I sat on a giant monster ship.

 

I’ll call in sick to work this week, I thought, as I hitched a ride on his back and swam out to god-knows-where. I took off my helmet, patted his tough hide, laid down, and bled out small portions. I hope we’re heading towards the Bahamas, bud.

The End

 


Gfantis vs the Guest Monsters

Gfantis the Prince of the Monster’s and the mascot of the world’s longest running kaiju fanzine G-FAN faces off against the greatest and most powerful monsters from the world of kaiju novels and comics. Gfantis has destroyed every kaiju he has faced in the pages of G-FAN magazine but will even he be able to overcome the likes of: Jeremy Robinson’s Nemesis, Matthew Dennion’s Atomic Rex, Chimera, and the ROCS, Timothy Price’s The Duke and Zargatron, Christopher Martinez and Jonathan Clode’s Dorugan, Wayne Smith and Frank Parr’s Irokus, Eric S. Brown’s Zombie Kaiju Tyler Sowles and Scott Schmidt’s Durontus, K.H. Koehler’s Raiju, Todd Tennant and Mike Bogue’s King Komodo, Zach Cole’s Marugrah, Keith Foster’s Kodoja, Skip Peel’s Itara and many more!!The greatest kaiju authors and artists in the world have lent their monsters to G-Fan magazine! Dare to read the carnage that occurs when Gfantis crosses paths with the Guest Kaiju!

  • ISBN: 9781370280278
  • Author: Matthew Dennion
  • Published: 2017-01-07 20:50:28
  • Words: 75813
Gfantis vs the Guest Monsters Gfantis vs the Guest Monsters