Top option: *STAY ON EARTH WITH DEM BROS*
Bottom option: *GO TO SPACE BRAH*
Gasper: That was good timing, Daniel. I was missing that feeling I get when I see your car at the front gate.
Daniel: I’m terribly sorry, Marshall. Your dinner party was…
Gasper: I don’t care. Thanks to you, I didn’t have to open that Sauternes from Chateau d’Yquem.
Daniel: Oh…. What year?
Gasper: From 40 years back. Ah, that reminds me. Send my granddaughter’s presents to her house. I’ll leave the method to you.
Daniel: Of course, sir.
Gasper: Now then…. what is this gigantic thing in the sky?
Daniel: It’s a 4-kilometer-long chunk of rock. Today at 0434, it appeared over the Arabian Peninsula’s Nafud Desert. It quickly rose up to around 40 kilometers, and is continuing to ascend. Its current position is around 51 kilometers, putting it above the stratosphere. The Federation’s Space Forces assigned to Operation Reconquista are sending us video footage.
Gasper: …. We had a mechanical star and a giant sword, and now a floating garden. There’s no end to this stuff. That structure in the middle… is it a tower?
Gasper: Reminds me of the Tower of Babel. I’m sure historians and Archeologists are frothing at the mouth right about now.
Gasper: So who’s the mastermind this time?
Daniel: They’ve already come forth to claim responsibility.
Daniel: We received this video a few hours back. Please look at it.
Ganglong: Heyo, folks of the Earth Federation Military. Ya feeling good? I’m Son Ganglong, and I’m the leader of the Baral. Now, as you know, we’ve been waiting for the right moment to bring our base, the Garden of Baral, to light. There was a lot of prep work that went into this, but I think we’re finally ready to get this plan started. But there’s no need for you to worry. We’re the protectors of the Earth. Think of this as us reaching out our hand to help you. Of course, there’s nothing you need to do. You should just sit back and wait for the God of Baral’s reawakening. We’ll ask for your patience for just a little longer. You’ll soon be promoted, and live a life of amusement and wonder in a modern Garden of Eden. It’ll be a utopia where you couldn’t ask for more. You’ll have no fears of enemies from beyond the stars. You’ll live in peace for eternity. That’s right, if the God of Baral awakens, we’ll take care of the Ruina and the Guests. You don’t have to do anything. Be calm, and wait for the chosen among you to be saved. Oh, and just saying… there’s no point in attacking the Garden of Baral. But if you really don’t believe me, you can go ahead and try all you like. In any case, the time is almost here. Everyone will be content under the watchful gaze of our God. That’s all I have to say! See ya! Ahahahahahahaha!
*well that was long*
Gasper: Well he’s certainly full of confidence. We should air this at Cannes next year.
Daniel: Most of what he said matches up with what Intelligence has told us about the Baral.
Gasper: Yes, from when the Steel Dragons engaged the members of their organization in combat.
Daniel: They were able to move a rock of that size beyond the stratosphere. I don’t think we should discount their threats.
Gasper: We can’t disregard the possibility that it’s just someone with too much free time having some fun… But we do have to do something about that floating garden.
Daniel: Indeed. Just in case, I think it may be necessary to give all units an emergency warning to be prepared for it.
Gasper: I’ll allow it. But until we know more, their first priority is still the Guests and the Ruina.
Gasper: How are the government and civilians taking it?
Daniel: Right now, it seems we’re the only people who have this video. Though I think it’s likely that it was also sent to the Gaia Sabers.
Daniel: How are we going to deal with the Garden of Baral?
Gasper: …Does the space federation battalion have H-MAP Weapons?
Daniel: Yes, sir. In the simulator, we have already come up with many patterns that result in the destruction of the target.
Gasper: Then begin the preparations for an attack. I’ll have President Hendricks give permission for Case E.
Gasper: (Either Son Ganglong sent that video to buy himself time… or…. Maybe he taunting us….)
*Anyway, in space now*
Federation captain: Colonel Humphrey, H-MAP weapons 1 through 6 are ready to fire.
Humphrey: Good. What’s the status of the target?
Operator: It is still continuing to rise. It is now at a height of 290 kilometers.
Humphrey: …I’m sure they’ve already noticed us. And yet they haven’t done anything, which means…
Operator: Colonel, the order has been sent from the JCS.
Humphrey: Pass it here. Captain, begin the confirmation sequence.
Captain: Yes, sir.
Humphrey: … Is it confirmed?
Captain: Yes sir.
Humphrey: Then we are approved to fire the H-MAP Weapons! Begin the attack!
*Big ol booms and oh no what did you do you idiots*
*anyway, yeah, save your game cause this shit’s about to get real. Continue from the intermission when you're ready*
Alteur: That was a huge misstep.
Gaspard: It may have been our attack that set off the barrier, but I’m sure that this is what the Baral would have done sooner or later.
Alteur: Whatever excuse helps you sleep at night. Now what do you need from me?
Gaspard: As this barrier expanded out, the boundary force around Antarctica contracted, but became taller. We’re keeping an eye on the changes so that we’re not shut out of the airspace above the South Pole. It may because they’re on guard against that Baral, but the Ruina are slowing their advances. This could be an opportunity for us.
Alteur: I see…. So this is an ultimatum.
Gaspard: Yes. I want you to help speed up Operation Icebreaker.
Alteur: We have our own concerns to deal with… but fine. However, I have one condition.
Gaspard: What is it?
Alteur: Hand over the Steel Dragons to us.
Gaspard: I couldn’t hand them over or do anything. They are not under my jurisdiction at the moment.
Alteur: Hmm... Then let me put it this way. Have your forces pursue the Steel Dragons as well. But we need to be the ones to capture them.
Gaspard: That seems pretty convenient for you…. But we still have our honor. I’d like you to leave their arrest to us, and then we’ll hand them over.
Alteur: Honor, you said…. Are you telling me to stop my pursuit of them?
Gaspard: That’s right.
Alteur: (Hmmph. So he’s trying to corner me. Two can play at that game.)
Alteur: …Fine. Then if that’s all…
Daniel: Marshall, are you serious? If you hand the Steel Dragons over to the Gaia Sabers…!
Gaspard: It’s all part of the plan. Now, how will he react…
Nibhal: Their main base was in the Nafud Desert.
Alteur: Heh. Sometimes the sheer scale of my luck terrifies me, with how often things work out in my favor.
Nibhal: It could be in that floating altar to Baral’s God…
Alteur: No, we can’t say for sure yet. It could be in Antarctica, too.
Nibhal: But that’s where the Ruina…
Alteur: The Baral are likely moving on the chance that the god the Ruina worship is awakening…. That’s the best case scenario. The problem is Son Ganglong’s plans…. I wonder what he means by humans being “promoted” … If it disrupts our plans, then we’ll need to take care of them quickly. We can deal with the South Pole later. That also goes for the Guests, without saying.
Alteur: Yes. Just like Bian Zoldark did, we’ll be betting our lives on this final plan…. First, send out the Gamma sabers. That will make things simple for Gaspard. As long as the Ruina don’t make a move, it’ll be easy.
*MEANWHILE, OVER THE PACIFIC OCEAN*
Lamia: The barrier from the Baral’s base has spread over everything except for the Ruina’s barrier. It’s persisting. It prevents direct contact between the earth and space like the Ultrum Exterior did…. But as you can tell, it doesn’t cut out the light of the sun or anything-such-like-that. And we haven’t found any particular regions that are being affected worse than others at the moment.
Excellen: This new barrier seems a lot nicer than the last one, huh.
Lamia: We can’t contact the people in Space, meaning there’s no way to get in touch with the Hiryuu Custom. And we’ve learned the Barrier can’t be damaged by even something as powerful as a H-MAP Weapon…. And I’d guess that even more powerful weapons wouldn’t damage it, either. It’s probably more impossible to pass through than the Dimensional Barrier.
Kai: In other words, we’re stuck on the Earth again.
Axel: Looks like this barrier is both a shield and a cage.
Ratsel: Son Ganglong is looking to use the people on the surface as part of his Mass Transcendence Project, without leaving them any hope of escape.
Josh: Lt. Lamia, is there any point of entry in the Baral’s barrier, like Septen Polum?
Lamia: Right now, we think the only place that could be one is their floating base.
Shine: So if we don’t destroy it, then there’s no way we can leave the earth…?
Touma: There’s no other way?
Lamia: It’s risky, but if we could get through the Ruina’s barrier, then we’d have a way to get to space.
Excellen: Sheesh, that’s rough. Maybe… if we paid Son Ganglong a toll, he’d let us through?
Ing: A toll? You mean money?
Kyosuke: Don’t take her seriously, Ing. In any case, we’re limited by what our bosses tell us to do. In this situation, we’ll either continue with Operation Icebreaker, or….
Kai; Regarding that, I have a message from the JCS. They said “Though we understand you are in a strange situation, we request that you pay it no mind and complete the mission given to you as planned.” That’s all.
Excellen: …Well, it’s not like it’s as big of a deal as the Ultrum Exterior…. But I have a bad feeling about this.
Rahda: Indeed… It’s still life or death.
Arado: U-um, Major Kai….
Kai: …I heard about Irui from Sanger. It looks like you haven’t found her.
Bullet: We checked the security footage for the ship…. And we didn’t see her anywhere….
Seolla: She just suddenly vanished from her room…
Kai: How could this have happened…
Rishu: I think it could have something to do with the Baral.
Rishu: I have no proof, but… Considering what the Xian can do, I would imagine it’s possible for them to take her.
Seolla: B-but why would they want her…?
Rishu: I don’t know.
Bullet: (Could it be related to Irui’s dreams…?)
Tetsuya: According to the message I just got from Lt. General Jacob, it looks like the Gaia Sabers have pulled back from their pursuit of us.
Ratsel: Why would they do that?
Tetsuya: It seems like something was worked out between Marshal Gaspard and Alteur, but the Lt. General didn’t know the details.
Ratsel: It’s a little hard to believe.
Tetsuya: He guesses it’s because we’re helping out with Operation Icebreaker, but….
Eita: Signals on the radar! Ruina mechs inbound! From 3 o’clock, headed right for us! They’re within Range 5!
Tetsuya: All hands, battle stations! Prepare to deploy!
Chapter 54: Beneath the Celestial Canopy
Eita: Targets Alpha and Bravo are coming in from 11 o’clock! Range 3!
Tetsuya: Prepare the VLSM!
*Sup bros, also deploy*
Arado: Looks like they don’t care about the barrier!
Glacies: …No matter what the Baral do, if the Lord of Ruin awakens, the end is the same. I’m sure that’s what Umbra is thinking.
Josh: Laki, this fight…
Glacies: I already said it. I was born to fight. Even if I’m up against that which created me, it’s no different.
Hugo: But this means they’ll know about you.
Ventus: Right, Umbra and Contagio won’t hesitate. They’ll want to get rid of us quickly before we can guide you to them.
Ventus: But after joining up with you, we were given a second chance. So we’ll battle against anyone who tries to get rid of you.
Kai: Erebus 1 to all units! Quickly destroy all enemies!
Chapter 54: Beneath the Celestial Canopy
Victory: Shoot down all enemies.
Defeat: The Hagane is shot down.
SR point: Within 3 turns, shoot down more than 20 enemies.
*blow up lots, get some warnos*
Eita: Multiple airborne targets headed towards our location!
Tetsuya: Are they Ruina reinforcements?
Josh: The Ruina!
*Oh it’s just you*
Chien: Heh, looks like we’re taking credit for killing these.
Ariel: The Gamma Sabers!
Rishu: Th-that mech… Murata!
Bullet: When did he fall in with the Gaia Sabers?
Eita: It can’t be… Are they looking for a fight?!
Tetsuya: No, the report was that the Gaia Sabers have stopped their pursuit.
Eita: So they were only after the Ruina…?
Chien: Well then…. What are we gonna do, boss?
Chiot: We did all that stuff before getting here, so I wanna go home as soon as possible.
Murata: They’ll be a better fight than the Ruina. Let’s go.
Chienne: Hehe, I was hoping for that.
Chien: Heh, unlike Albero, this guy gets it.
Murata: Draw all the blood you wish. If you’re strong enough to try, I don’t mind if you even come against me.
Chiot: Sure, sounds fun. We didn’t get to have much fun at the last fight, anyway.
Chien: C’mon man, don’t be an idiot. Murata, watch as we earn more than you.
Eita: Captain! The Gaia Sabers are going to attack us!
Tetsuya: Azuki, open up a comms line!
Tetsuya: This is the captain of the Hagane, Commander Tetsuya Onodera of the Steel Dragons! Were you not told to call off your pursuit of us?!
Murata: …I haven’t heard that.
Tetsuya: That’s not true! Confirm it!
Murata: There’s no point.
Chienne: It’s like he’s talking in his sleep.
Chien: Since you guys still haven’t been punished for killing the president, we’ll have to go after the guys protecting you, too.
Arado: We’ve told you again and again, that wasn’t us!
Seolla: People are beginning to figure out what really happened!
Chienne: Who? There’s no one like that here.
Latooni: …Aren’t you supposed to be protecting the Earth? Right now, we shouldn’t be doing this, we should be fighting…
Chienne: The Ruina or the Baral? Sure, but we don’t have any reason to let you go, either.
Chien: Right. And besides, there’s been no order to halt the pursuit of the Steel Dragons.
Excellen: …I can’t tell if he’s telling a lie, or if he always looks like that.
Kyosuke: It doesn’t matter.
Excellen: Right. After all, it’s the Samurai Garlion and those pupsters.
Aqua: If he’s the one leading the Gamma Saviors now, then what is Erde doing…?
Rishu: …Murata, you’ve joined the Gaia Sabers, then. What of the Neo DC Remnants?
Murata: I haven’t heard from them since I returned to the surface. Perhaps they were taken out by the aliens or the fairies. In any case, my employer is currently the Gaia Sabers.
Rishu: Have you thought upon the young captain’s words? Now is not the time for us to cross blades.
Murata: The enlightenment of carnage is beyond the mountain of corpses. All I wish is to cut down anyone powerful enough to stand before me. Rishu, Sanger, it is all the more true if you are my opponents. That is the reason I returned to the surface.
Sanger: Laughable. A sword of evil cannot hope to cut me down.
Rishu: Is there nothing I can say to convince you otherwise?
Murata: I said it before. I turn a deaf ear to your meaningless utterances. Only your blood can quench my thirst.
Chien: Don’t worry. Once we’ve wiped you out, we’ll go right to dealing with the Baral and the Ruina.
Arado: If you really have to come at us, why don’t you do it after you’ve dealt with them?!
Chienne: You really suck at begging for your life, Arado! You won’t get away from us this time!
Arado: Who’s begging?!
Ratsel: …Commander Tetsuya, we have to protect ourselves from any possible dangers.
Tetsuya: We have no choice…! All units, repel the Gaia Sabers!
Victory: Bring the Garlion “Mumyou” to below 13,000 HP.
*beat up bitch*
Chienne: Ugh, I’m not dying here! I’ll get you back for this!
*Murata V Sanger*
Murata: Sanger! I have waited for this moment, our final battle!
Sanger: A sword of personal desires will not come to bear against me! If you still wish to clash with me, then you will challenge the demons of the abyss next!
*Murata V Rishu*
Rishu: Murata! You cannot escape your recompense forever!
Murata: Swords exist to kill people! My Shishio Blade aches for your blood!
*Beat up Chien*
Chien: Dammit, you’ve got some fight in you! But you’re not getting me here!
*Beat up puppy*
Chiot: …This is expected, considering we already fought earlier today… but I’m not going to die.
*Beat up Murata*
Murata: Hmmph, my flow was disrupted…!
Murata: Sanger! Rishu! This battle is not over! When next we meet, I will take your heads!
Excellen: Oh my. His sword is quick, but his legs are even quicker.
Ratsel: …Most likely, I think Alteur simply didn’t order them to stop pursuit, but we can’t say that this wasn’t part of Gaspard’s plan.
Tetsuya: What do you mean?
Ratsel: He was able to see what the Gaia Sabers would do. Using us as bait.
Ratsel: Captain, you should be prepared. Before we reach the Antarctica, we may be sent to Grand Christmas.
Tetsuya: But right now… we should be fighting…
Sanger: That’s not what they think. They had no hesitation. Instead, they seemed joyfully willing to turn their blades against us.
Rishu: Indeed. There’s many people in the Gaia Sabers who bear grudges against us.
Tetsuya: But if they go against their agreement with the Federation, then their only confirming the suspicions about them.
Rishu: They probably no longer care about that.
Rishu: Now all they care about is settling the score with us.
Tetsuya: But with things as they are, we need to avoid whatever fights we can.
Rishu: That’s good. That view is necessary to combat their insanity. Until now, we have fought many enemies…. We can’t forget the sense of justice we followed to save our world. If we can keep it with us, we’ll be able to follow the right path, and make it through these dark times.
*Meanwhile, in Antarctica*
Ignis: What?! Laki?!
Umbra: Yes, with Ventus.
Contagio: *chuckles* not only did they escape their scheduled extermination, but now they turn against us. I guess this is what happens when you deal with damaged goods.
Aquila: But that means the humans have a way to get through the Meridiem Polum.
Contagio: Whether they come here or not, it’s all the same.
Umbra: But there’s still the Baral to deal with… For now, we should bolster our defenses.
Contagio: If it’s just them, they won’t be able to make it through the Meridiem Polum. And thanks to the barrier made by the God of Baral, they won’t be able to escape, either. *chuckles*
Umbra: Just like us, they’re people who sealed this entire planet. We can’t treat them lightly.
Ignis: (Laki… I don’t want to see you broken like this… If you can’t return to how you were, then with my own hands, I’ll….)
 I checked the details of his wine, btw
 Worldly, not modern, but doesn’t flow as well.
 Literally, Sleep talking is when someone talks in their sleep. What
 Human blood and… fuckin…. Oppourtunity oil.