Archaeological Thingamobobical Part 7:
The Final Hour

In the last episode of the RAU Gallery, Dr. Honen Calzoun had succeeded in stealing the Netscape Navigator away from the rogue anti-virus program as Loro began the uninstallation process. Now what fate awaits them?

Honen: *cough* *hack* Ugh...didn't need to get beat up while already injured... I feel... *ack!*
Nucleo: Honen!! Im, can you take over for awhile?
Image: Yeah, we're out of the danger zone, so I shouldn't have any problem piloting it by myself now. I'll fly us to the Control Panel to rendezvous with Loro.
(Nucleo helps Honen out of the pilot's seat, Image Arcane takes over the controls.)
Honen: Merci, Professor... About Cirrus...
Nucleo: It's alright, Honen. With the anti-virus uninstalled, no more drones will be coming after her. We're safe. I'm just wondering why it was so intent on getting her in the first place.
Honen: Dat's what I wanted to explain... Someting's strange about her... She cast a dark shield spell earlier...
Nucleo: What? Are you certain of that, Honen?
Honen: Aye. 100% certain. Even ze sensors on ze Megallon identified it as so.
Nucleo: ... Then she's part mountaindevil.
Honen: What? She doesn't look at all like mountaindevil. I think she iz glitch.
Nucleo: Would you guess that Cory is half mountaindevil if you didn't know I was her father?
Honen: Uh...maybe not...But Cory's race is difficult to identify at all. Cirrus looks like normal Oni, and there iz issue of compatibility of species.
Nucleo: Maybe mountaindevil traits are recessive.
Image: Wow. An Oni with magical blood. I'll bet that just imploded your personal universe.
Honen: Oh, shuddup! Glitch, halfling, whatever. Doesn't matter how she got here. Let's just take her back to Loro.

(Loro had just finished helping Nucleo bandage up his arms)
Loro: What happened to you guys? You've been seriously sliced up.
Nucleo: We had some rather nasty run-ins with the drones. We really do appreciate your help, though, Loro.
Loro: Well, I've done all I can for you. It should hold you for a little while.
Nucleo: So, now that we've got the Navigator, what's our next move?
Loro: All you have to do is take Port 22, follow it to the internet, and you're home free.
Nucleo: Then we'll be on our way. Thanks again for everything, Loro.
Loro: Would you be willing to take Cirrus with you?
Nucleo: What? Why? I thought since you've been caring for her this long that you'd want to keep her...
Loro: I do, Professor McRaven, but I also want what's best for her. There is no future in this place. If she went with you, she could learn a lot of things at that University of yours. And...she really loves Dr. Calzoun. He may not be her father, but she'd be with another of her own kind.
Honen: No, no, no, no, no! How many times I must say it? I am NOT family man! She do better with you. My past...iz too murky anyway.
Loro: I think my past is even murkier, Dr. Calzoun. That's why I'm not going to ask you to take me with you.
Image: But if you were to come with us, you could escape your past.
Loro: Considering the crimes I've committed, Dr. Arcane, "escaping" my past would be far more than I deserve. To remain here until the day this hard drive simply crumbles to dust is my self-chosen punishment.
Honen: Dat's just stupide. Why not make up for it in present time? I was once ignorant, annoying jackass. War makes you dat way...
Loro: I'm sorry, Dr. Calzoun, but my decision is made. If you don't want to take Cirrus, then I guess I can't force you to.
Nucleo: We'll take her, Loro, but I'm sorry that you won't be coming with us. Thanks again for everything, friend. You won't be forgotten.
Loro: Goodbye, Cirrus. Be good for them.

(The Navigator begins its flight down Port 22. Image Arcane is piloting it, Nucleo is in co-pilot's seat. Honen is resting on the floor with Cirrus.)
Honen: What am I going to do? I am not cut out to be father.
Nucleo: Who says you have to be? Im and I will take care of her. She's half mountaindevil anyway, so she'll still be with "one of her own kind", as Loro wanted.
Honen: Still not sure I believe she really iz... You know... I wonder if she iz capable of learning anyting. She can't even talk.
Nucleo: Maybe getting out of 1995 will give her a chance to mature a little. Just don't worry so much.
Image: Nuclee!! We've got problems! Something's tailing us!
Nucleo: What is it? Can you get it on-screen?
(The video screen shows a small, conical ship with wings that resemble an open pair of scissors on each side trailing the Navigator.)
Image: That looks kind of like Honen's...
Honen: Sacrebleu! Ze Clipperwing!!
Honen (95): Mwa ha ha ha!! Did you expect to get away with dat machine so easily?! Pull over at once or I shall take it by force!
Honen: Aye caramba!! What persistent bastard I am! I'll have to take over controls again to outrun him.
Nucleo: Are you sure you're up to it?
Honen: I dunno, but only pilot who has chance of beating me iz me.
(For several panels, the Clipperwing tails the Navigator down the tunnels of Port 22. The Navigator is unable to shake the smaller, highly-maneuverable ship.)
Honen: Ach!! I am having difficulty outrunning him, Professor! *cough* Damn ship not equipped with any weapons! Verdammen Sie es aller zur Hölle!!
Honen (95): I confess your flying skills are admirable, but unfortunately they are no match for mine! Surrender! You only prolong inevitable!
Image: Nucleo, even if we manage to outrun him, we're leading him right out into our own time period.
Nucleo: Good point. One of us is going to have to confront him. Open the hatch.
Image: Are you nuts?? We're moving at top speed!
Nucleo: I can fly.
Image: But not very well!
Nucleo: I don't have time to argue with you, dove. I'm going.

(Nucleo climbs out the hatch to the top of the Navigator. Fighting the force of the wind, he walks to the back of the ship and begins firing blasts of Dark Magic at the Clipperwing. However, the blasts appear to be absorbed with no harm to the ship.)
Honen (95): HA HA HA HA HA!! Crazy mountaindevil, you want to fight me, eh? Ze Clipperwing iz equipped with shielding to protect against magic. You iz useless as fly attacking elephant.

Honen: Ce qui dans le monde? I have someting else on radar!
Image: What??
Honen: I don't know...

(While Nucleo struggles to stop the Clipperwing with his magic, '95 Honen prepares to take him out with the Clipperwing's front cannon. Grasping a control stick, '95 Honen aligns the target on his view screen.)
Honen (95): Wazn't exactly how I had hoped to defeat you, but it will have to do! Heh heh heh. So long, Professor McRaven.
(As '95 Honen fires the Clipperwing's cannon Nucleo falls down to avoid it. At that moment he notices a winged figure has flown up alongside the Clipperwing.)
Nucleo: !!! Loro!!
(It turns out the "wings" Loro is using is a contraption he built from the junk at his scrapyard. He ditches them to land on the windshield of the Clipperwing, trying to force it to stop.)
Honen (95): Aiee~! I cannot see where I am going!!
Nucleo: Loro, great Skiva!!
Honen (95): Time to get rid of you, I'd say!
('95 Honen pulls out his gun and shoots at Loro right through the windshield. Loro dodges, but is about to fall off the Clipperwing.)
Loro: Gha-agh!
Nucleo: Loro!! Jump!!
(Loro turns and jumps to the Navigator, but only just barely makes it. He is left hanging on the edge of its tail.)
Honen (95): HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!!! I'd hate to lose dat ship, but my patience has worn too thin, und ze opportunity to eliminate McRaven und a filthy lizardman iz far more tempting now...
(Just as '95 Honen prepares to shoot, a blast from somewhere else hits the Clipperwing and knocks the cannon's laser off-course so that it misses the Navigator.)
Honen (95): Gwa-aaha---ahhaaahahaaaaa!!!! Where ze hell did dat come from!?!
(A much larger ship appears behind the Clipperwing. Its curved wings practically surround it. It's Lt. Koma's space cruiser, the Kiini.)
Deuce (95): Surprise, Sharkface! You ain't getting away from me that easily! Pull your vehicle over at once and surrender!
Nucleo (95): Deuce, aren't you going a little too fast? *Ulp!*
Deuce (95): Quit complainin'. How else can I keep up with him?
Nucleo (95): Oh, great Skiva, I can't look.
Deuce (95): Shouldn't flying be second nature to a guy with wings?
Nucleo (95): Flying doesn't bother me. Crashing and blowing up does.
(The Kiini gets too close to the Clipperwing and collides with it. Both ships tumble out of control in the confined space of Port 22's tunnel.)
Deuce (95): Uh-oh. Better eject.
Nucleo (95): Equilateral triangles!
Honen (95): Verdammen...Sie es aller...zur Hölle...

Abandon... ship.

('95 Deuce and '95 Nucleo are seen parachuting out of the Kiini. As present-day Nucleo looks on, he sees '95 Honen also parachuting out of the Clipperwing. '95 Honen is fuming, agrily shaking a fist back at Nucleo.)
Honen (95): I'll get you for zis, Professor McRaven!! You have not heard ze last of ze great Dr. Honen Calzouuuuuuuuuun!!
Nucleo: ...



(Nucleo grabs ahold of Loro's arm and is trying to pull the Lizardman up onto the top of the ship. Loro is still only barely hanging on.)
Loro: Gah... Not sure I can hang on, Professor. I should stay... behind... anyway...Ergh...
Nucleo: What made you come after us!?
Loro: I am psionic... I had a vision of Cirrus in trouble... We must still have...a strong psychic connection-- I'm slipping!
Nucleo: I got you!
Loro: Let go, I'll make you fall!
Image: Nuclee! What the hell is going on up here!?!
Nucleo: Im!! Get back into the hatch!!
Image: YOU get back in here!! I'm worried about Honen!
Nucleo: What!? Why?! What's wrong?!
Image: He's acting like he's barely hanging on to consciousness!!

Honen: *cough* *Wheeze* I can do zis... *wheeze* I can do zis... *cough* I am ze greatest pilot.. *huff*... in all of Phainein... *wheeze* ... *cough* ...I am... Ugh... ze great *huff* Dr. Honen... *wheeze* Cal-....

Nucleo: Im, get back in there and help him pilot the ship!! I'm not letting go of Loro!!
Loro: Professor, this is madness!! I don't deserve your help!! You're going to fall off or get killed trying to save me now!!
Nucleo: Then so be it!! Now, shut up with the self-depreciation and help me pull you into the hatch!!

Image: Honen, step aside! Honen? Honen!!
(Image approaches Honen. He is still piloting the Navigator, but looks very tired and weary.)
Honen: can't...I must...
Image: *sigh* Easy there, kiddo. You're working way too hard. C'mon, I want to slow the ship down so Nucleo and Loro can get inside.
(As Image attempts to help Honen out of the chair, he appears to have fallen unconscious.)
Honen: ....
Image: Hey! Are you allright? C'mon, I need you to get out of this chair...Honen!
(The video screen in front of Image and Honen suddenly turns on with lines of static.)
Deuce: ***bzzzzz*** Nucleo! Image! Honen! Can any of you hear me? ***bzzzzz***
Image: Deuce!! Is that you?! From the future?!
Deuce: ***bzzzzz*** What?? Im? Future? ***bzzzzz*** Can you repeat that last transmission?? ***psshhhhh***
Image: Deuce, we're onboard an ancient web browser from 1995 called Netscape Navigator. We're traveling along Port 22 attempting to gain access to the internet. But Honen's fallen unconscious, Nucleo's clinging to the outside of the ship, and I'm having difficulty getting things under control.
Deuce: ***bzzzzz*** Okay, listen up! I'm gonna use the LAN to take control of your browser and guide you in manually. ***bzzzzz*** Just stay calm, I'll take it from here. Deuce, over and out! ***psshhhhh***
Image: Well, that's a relief. ... Honen, c'mon. Wake up.
Honen: ... hmmm... mmph...
Image: Allright, just take it easy. I'm gonna go check on my husband.

Loro: Nucleo, I don't think I can hold onto this thing much longer. Don't worry about me. You have a family...friends...
Nucleo: Just hang on! We're slowing down.
Image: Nuclee! Are you allright?!
Nucleo: Just fine, Im! How's Honen holding up?
Image: Not too well, but Deuce has somehow taken control of the ship and is guiding us to safety!
Nucleo: Okay, then, get back in the ship and stay with Honen. I'll be allright.

(Back at the Oskillian Mountain Cave, the ancient hard drive sits on the ground. As Deuce works on the computer, a flash of light comes out of the hard drive. When the light dissipates, the Navigator appears in its stead.)
Deuce: Touchdown!
Cory: Amadeus!!
Nucleo: Cory! What are you doing here?
Cory: I was worried about you... Whoah...who's...?
(Now that the ship has come to a stop, Loro is able to jump down safely to the ground...right in front of a surprised Cory.)
Loro: ...
Nucleo: Oh, this is Loro. Don't worry, he's a friend.
Cory: A friend? Glad to hear that... Where's mom?
Nucleo: She's still inside the ship.
Deuce: Nucleo, are you allright? How do we open this thing?

Image: C'mon, Dr. Calzoun, wake up. I think we're home now. We stopped moving and the colors are back to normal.
Honen: .... did I... black out? Have I failed...?
Image: No, you did just fine. We're safe now.
Deuce: Im! Are you okay?
Image: Yeah, Deuce, I'm fine, but Honen's under the weather right now...
Nucleo: Hello, dear. Sorry to have scared you like that.
Cory: Mom!
(Would like to have a "McRaven Family Reunion" scene somewhere around here. Not sure exactly where would be best.)
Image: Nucleo, Cory! It's okay, Nuclee. Loro made it, right?
Nucleo: Yes, he's allright.

(Deuce approaches Honen from behind. He is still in the pilot's seat, but appears to be just lying there unconscious again.)
Deuce: Honen?
Honen: ... R-Rosalyn?
Deuce: Heyyyy...are you allright? What happened to you?
Honen: Rosalyn...I ruined your dogtags.
Deuce: Oh, don't worry about that. Let's just get you taken care of. Hold still for a moment while I check you over for... Oh, my...
Cirrus: ...
(Cirrus has appeared from somewhere. She touches Deuce's leg in a scene that echoes her previous encounter with '95 Deuce.)
Deuce: Honen, who is this?
Honen: Zis iz Cirrus. Before you ask, no she's no relation. She iz orphan.
Deuce: She's adorable, Honen. Were you keep her?
Honen: I dunno. I don't think I really can...ouch! *cough*
Deuce: Allright, just relax.
Image: C'mon, Cirrus. Let's get out of the way.
Cirrus: ...
Deuce: Seems like you have a broken rib.
Honen: Ah, dat's what I figured. Heh.
Deuce: It's good that you're taking it so well.
Honen: Iz allright. I am survivor. I get through it eventually.
Deuce: Does this thing have a steady flight? I'm wondering if it would be better to take you back in this ship or Bubu.
Honen: Iz steady enough. Doesn't matter which one, really... But you'll stay with me, right?
Deuce: Oh, of course. I'll fly you back and just holler at me if you need anything.
Honen: Merci, Rosalyn...iz really good to see you again... *soupir*
Cory: ...
(Outside the Navigator, Nucleo disconnects the ancient hard drive's wires.)
Nucleo: Oops, almost forgot to disconnect this. Don't want any more trouble coming out of there. ... Loro?
Loro: Yes, Professor.
Nucleo: Are you coming with us? You might want to get inside the Navigator before Deuce takes off. It'll be difficult squeezing you into Bubu with the rest of us.
Loro: I feel like I shouldn't, worked so hard and risked your life to get me here. I owe it to you. It just... kind of surprises me that Cirrus still has a strong attachment to me. Before, she didn't have any choice, but now...
Nucleo: While she does seem to have a fascination with Honen, that doesn't mean she ditched all the trust you've built with her, Loro.
Loro: Hmm. I suppose not. Then I'll keep her with me for awhile. See you at the University, Professor.
Nucleo: I'm sure you'll like it there, Loro. Im, are you ready?
Image: Yeah, I packed the last of our stuff into Bubu. Talon, can you go get Cory for me?
Talon: Sure.

Loro: Lt. Koma, it seems Cirrus and I will be going with you. Is that allright?
Deuce: Hm? Oh, of course, Loro, and maybe you can watch over Honen for me.
Loro: Certainly...if he doesn't mind.
Honen: ... So... you came after all, you crazy lizardman. *cough* I'm so glad. I don't think I would be good parental figure for Cirrus.
Loro: I'll continue to take care of her, but I was hoping that she could learn some things from you. You are a teacher at the University, correct?
Honen: Yes. I teach math, science, and aeronautics. Not sure what she can learn. There's so much... *cough*... we don't know about her... Her parents, her magical powers...*cough* You're psychic. Can't you just read zis stuff from her mind?
Loro: No. For some reason, I can't. I can only understand her thoughts seemingly when she wants me to.
Honen: Oh, dat's just great... Then she really must be harbinger of doom...
Loro: Oh, c'mon.
Cory: ...
Talon: Hey, Cor! Your mom wants us to go with her in Bubu back to Grimmora. Is something wrong?
Cory: I just feel a little bad about suspecting Calzoun. I mean, I still haven't forgiven him for everything he's done in the past, but... he did help them come home safely. I feel like I should thank him, but, I dunno...
Deuce: Hey, kids, are you coming with me or going in Bubu? I'm getting ready for takeoff and I'll need to close the door.
Talon: We're going, Deuce! ... Maybe you can thank him later, Cor. C'mon.
Cory: Allright. Maybe I'll do that. He probably needs to rest right now anyway. Let's go before Im gets impatient.
(The Navigator and Bubu are seen from behind, driving/flying together out of the cave.)

Honen (95): CONDEMN YOU ALL TO ZE LOWEST LEVEL OF ENFER!!!. Ze Clipperwing was not adequate for zis mission! If dat Dante Razeena hadn't caused my Megallon to self-destruct, I would've caught them. Hmph!
Nucleo (95): Dante Razeena? The escaped mountaindevil slave destroyed the Megallon?
Honen (95): Dante Razeena iz not mountaindevil, you magical-blooded cur! He iz ze greatest Oni swordsman of all time. I fought him und actually won, so I guess dat makes me ze greatest now. Heh.
Nucleo (95): No, no, you're mistaken. I met Dante Razeena earlier today. He was a mountaindevil just like me, only nowhere near as handsome.
Honen (95): What type of moronic monkey are you? If dat mountaindevil told you he waz Dante Razeena, then he lied.
Nucleo (95): But his lizardman friend confirmed that's who he was.
Honen (95): Lizardman? Like ze one dat waz attacking ze outside of my ship?
Nucleo (95): I don't really know. I didn't get a good look at that one...
Honen (95): ??? How could you not? Weren't you helping him? And for dat matter, how did you get here? Did you fall off ze ship?
Nucleo (95): ... I have _no_ idea what you're talking about.
Deuce (95): Wait a minute, wait a minute, hold it! WTF is going on here?! There really was another Oni that caused the Megallon to spontaneously combust? And there really was another mountaindevil that had a lizardman friend? I thought I dreamed all of that... And they were both this same "Dante Razeena" guy?? What the...hell? This doesn't make any sense at all.
Honen (95): Ze Oni swordsman also claimed to be me from ze future. Und he had nerve to say I'm crazy.
Deuce (95): If he was a future you, then all I can say is, I'm glad we're stuck here in 1995. He claimed we're in love with each other in his time period.
Honen (95): Whaaaat?? AH HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!!!! He really waz insane then. No way I'd ever be in love with corpuscle like you.
Deuce (95): Hey, watch it! Wanna explain what you mean by that, Calzoun?
Honen (95): But of course! There iz absolutely no way I ever fall in love with a wretched she-man-girl-thing like yourself!
Deuce (95): Uh-huh. No way you could. More like, there's no way I could ever possibly love a mop-topped, shark-faced, potato-eyed, pigeon-toed, scarecrow like you!!!!
Nucleo (95): Guys...c'mon, is this really necessary?
Honen (95): How DARE you speak to me like dat, you man-girl-whatever!! I am ze greatest Oni swordsman in all history, und I shall rend your spleen from here all ze way back to Darlos!!
Deuce (95): Your sword can lick my M20B1, Talcum Boy!!
Nucleo (95): Uh, Deuce, I don't really think that's such a good idea--
(Honen has pulled out his gun and Deuce has pulled out her bazooka. They stand across from each other, aiming their weapons right at each other, as Nucleo stands in the middle looking VERY tense. Next thing you know, there is a big explosion and a huge cloud of smoke.)





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