"So, Einstein, what did you want us all at the Factory for?" Jacob asked as he arrived in the Lab on the Lift.
"Well, some of you are here to observe, but you, Ulrich, and William are going to the Arena."
"In Sector Five?" Ulrich asked in surprise. "Why?"
"Well, after we sent William as a cold rookie last time and he…well…"
"We know what happened, Jeremy," William scowled. "Where's the point in this?"
"Well, I decided that we should send you and Jacob to the Arena for a training session, so you can learn to use your powers and figure out what they are. That way it will be easier for you two to fight when we get into major combat."
"Oh, okay, that makes sense," William said as Jacob merely nodded.
"We drew straws, and Ulrich will be your sparring partner, but the others will be going along as observers, and to be there just in case XANA tries anything tricky. Okay?"
"Got it, Jeremy; let's go!" Jacob said excitedly as the group rushed for the Scanners.
Transfer Ulrich, Transfer William, Transfer Jacob.
Scanner Ulrich, Scanner William, Scanner Jacob.
Transfer Odd, Transfer Yumi, Transfer Aelita.
Scanner Odd, Scanner Yumi, Scanner Aelita.
The familiar zipping sound was heard as the six Warriors were virtualized into the Arena, which Jeremy had reprogrammed to be larger than usual for battle purposes.
"Cool!" Odd said as he walked around. "It's spacious now! I like it, Jeremy!"
"Well, it looks like we're all here," Ulrich said. "Shall we begin, rookies?"
"Oh, you did not just say that, Stern!" William snapped back as he hefted his Zweihander.
"What'cha gonna do about it?" Ulrich taunted.
"This!" William cried as he charged at Ulrich. Just as he was swinging his Zweihander, Ulrich nimbly sidestepped out of the way.
"Work on a way to take down faster enemies. Your drawback is that your sword is a bit weighty. Think about agility," he added as William faced him again.
He flashed back to his broken memories of his time under XANA's control, and he focused his subconscious for a moment before swinging his Zweihander again, which was now much lighter to wield. "Hey, Jeremy was right about your subconscious desires. That helps." He continued to flash through his broken memories until he found the one he wanted. "Well, I know one of my powers. Super Smoke!" William cried as he vanished into a puff of silver smoke and reappeared behind Ulrich. "Hah!" William cried as he swung his sword, and Ulrich barely had time to turn and raise his sabres to deflect the blow.
"Better, now let's see you use that agility!" Ulrich said. "Super Sprint!"
"Super Smoke!" William said as the two began a speed battle, with William popping up occasionally to clash blows with Ulrich before Ulrich finally tripped him when he reformed. Holding the tip of his sabre at William's head, he said, "Good. Not great; not yet, but I think you've got the hang of this," he complemented as he pulled William up and smiled. "I'm ready for Round Two, so bring it on, Jacob!" he smiled as Jacob stepped towards the center of the Arena. Finally stopping to take a good look at his Lyoko form, he realized…
"Jeremy, I don't have any weapons."
"Uh…I'm not sure. Focus your mind. Maybe you'll get a clue…" he said as Jacob closed his eyes and began to focus on the core of his being and siphon all of his energy. He moved the pent-up energy up to his center, and then began shooting it towards his fingertips until a spark appeared from his hand, followed by a crackling and finally…
"So that's what his power is!" Aelita exclaimed as a deep purple Energy Field crackled to life in his hand. He extinguished it and practiced summoning the orb several times until he could do it at a moment's notice.
"Cool!" he exclaimed. I'm ready, Ulrich!" he said as Ulrich smirked with the faintest hint of a smile.
"Super Sprint!" Ulrich yelled as he took off and tried to confuse Jacob with his speed before rushing in and slashing at him. Jacob quickly summoned two orbs and melded them together, forming a purple energy shield to block the blow. "Not bad," Ulrich smiled, "But let's see you play offense!" Jacob then created an Energy Field and fired it at Ulrich, who simply used his Super Sprint to dodge it before it reached him. This onslaught continued for a few moments more until Jacob stopped suddenly and closed his eyes. He didn't know why; he just felt that there was a way he could stop Ulrich long enough to win the fight. He opened his mouth, and a chorus of melodies could be heard ringing through the Arena as recognition dawned on Aelita's face. He focused his mind not on where Ulrich was standing, but where he somehow knew he would dash to as soon as he fired, and so, he fired a first Energy Field straight at Ulrich, who dashed away, and immediately Jacob opened his eyes and willed a block to form from the wall right where Ulrich was moving to, and the block protruded out of the wall at the perfect angle so that Ulrich could not dodge it, and he crashed into it and fell to the ground. Immediately, Jacob was over him and holding an Energy Field at his chest.
"I win," Jacob smiled as Ulrich relaxed and gave in.
"Nice job, man. I never saw that coming," he sighed as Jacob helped him up. "How did you do that?"
"Uh…I'm not sure. I just willed the section of wall to materialize, and it did."
"It's Creativity," Aelita explained as she came over. "I have the same power. It will allow you to manipulate the terrain, and pretty much anything you can come up with on Lyoko. You can build walls, bridges, clones…"
"Way cool," Jacob smiled.
"Why does he get all the special stuff?" William asked.
"Trust me, William," Jeremy answered. "I think there're some powers you haven't discovered yet too. Not even these three (referencing Odd, Yumi, and Ulrich) discovered all of their abilities in one shot. You'll have your day."
"Okay," he said a little dejectedly.
"So, Jacob, how did you know where to place the block to ensure Ulrich collided with it?" Odd asked.
"Um…when I focused, I could see where he was going to run, but I was seeing it through his eyes. It was a little strange."
"Telepathy…" Yumi whispered. "You were reading Ulrich's mind!"
"I was?" Jacob asked in surprise. "I always wanted to be able to do that!"
"Wow, Jacob, you have quite the subconscious. It will be a valuable gift having you on our team," Jeremy said, grinning.
"Thanks, Jeremy," he replied, a little embarrassed.
Meanwhile, in the Desert Sector, a sudden influx of energy causes a Tower to glow red…
In the Scanner Room, two clouds of smoke appear from the cables and morph into Jim and Principal Delmas. They share a quick look and then begin climbing the ladder towards the Laboratory…
Jeremy is suddenly distracted by a sudden beeping on his screen. He pulls up the SuperScan and sees the activated Tower message. "Uh, guys, I'd love to continue this training session, but we've got bigger problems. XANA has activated a Tower in the Desert Sector! It's time to go to work! Get to the Celestial Dome, and then I'll open a tunnel. Hurry!"
The path out of the Arena opens into the Core Zone, and the gang quickly traverses the room until they reach the exit tunnel on the other side and follow it out to the Celestial Dome. Jacob is taken aback by the beauty of the data screens forming the sphere around the Sector.
"Wow, it's amazing," he said in awe.
"You can admire later, Jacob. Right now we have a Tower to deactivate. I'm calling your taxis!" he said as the Overboard, Overwing, Overbike, and Overdisc appeared. "I put the finishing touches on the one you and Aelita were working on the other day, Jacob. I hope you like it," he said as he pressed enter and one more vehicle materialized. This vehicle looked like a floating metal sphere, with a seat and tech-y steering controls on top. "Look good?"
"Sleek, Einstein!" Jacob answered cheerfully. "You finished it even better than I could have!" he said as he hopped into the driver's seat and the five vehicles, with Aelita pairing with Yumi on the Overwing, took off towards the data walls.
"I'm opening the tunnel!" Jeremy said as one of the data streams vanished and the Warriors flew out through the tunnel. When they reached the other end they could see the yellow-orange color of the Digital Sea that meant they had reached the Desert Sector. They flew towards the nearest path, and landed safely. "The tower is located northeast of your current position. Let's go, guys," Jeremy said as the vehicles took off again.
The polymorphs, by this time, had reached the Laboratory, and were trying to sneak up on Jeremy when the Jim polymorph kicked a screw that was lying on the floor. It rattled enough to warn Jeremy, and he turned in time to see the two specters with the Eyes in their pupils. The Delmas spectre lunged at him, but he managed to jump out of the way in time. "Guys, I'm going to need some help back here! XANA's sent two polymorphs to the Factory! I—I…" the rest of his sentence was cut off in static…
"Jeremy? Jeremy?!?" Aelita called. "Someone needs to go!" she gasped.
"I'll go!" Odd said instantly.
"I'll go too," Yumi offered.
"All right, on three, Yumi, I'll devirtualize you, and Ulrich, you devirtualize me," Odd said.
"Gladly," Ulrich laughed as he readied his sabre.
"One, two, three!" Odd yelled as he fired his Laser Arrow at the same moment Ulrich sliced him with his sabre. A moment later, the two were sitting in the Scanners and could hear the clamor above them. "Let's go!" he said to Yumi as they ran for the lift.
Back on Lyoko, the four remaining Warriors were heading down a long, narrow path towards a crater which held the activated Tower. When they arrived at the top of the spiral path leading down to the pit, William commented, "It looks easy enough."
"Don't be so sure. It would be just like XANA to lure us into a trap," Aelita replied as they made their way along the spiral path towards the Tower. When they were halfway down, Jacob and Aelita heard a rumbling noise, and Aelita yelled, "Stop, you two! Something's coming…"
"What?" William asked as suddenly…
"Agh!" Jeremy yelled as he was clipped by a lightning bolt from one of the specters. He shook his head to clear the stars as the two clones came at him again when all of a sudden…
"Hey, ugly and uglier! Stay away from my friend!" Odd yelled as he grabbed a metal pipe from the floor next to him. "Bonzai!" he yelled as he and Yumi charged the two polymorphs. As they dragged the polymorphs off of Jeremy, Yumi said, "We'll get them out of here! You worry about Lyoko!"
"Okay, Jeremy nodded as he slipped back to the computer and put his headset, which had been knocked off in the struggle, back on. "Guys, I'm back. We had a little…"
"No time, Jeremy! Something's happening, but I can't tell what it is!" Aelita said nervously. "Can you give us a heads-up?"
"Yeah, okay, let me see…" Jeremy said as suddenly his screens lit up with Alert messages. "Oh, no, this is not good!" he said. "XANA's accessing reserve power from a Replika! I don't know how, but…anyways it looks like he's mobilizing an army…" Just as Jeremy finished with that sentence, Jacob said "Look!" and the four of them saw the Tower glow ever brighter red as suddenly, an army of at least 100 Krabes was materialized in the pit!
"Crap…" Jacob finished for Ulrich as they looked at the mass of monsters now guarding the Tower. "Any ideas, Einstein?"
"Uh…" Jeremy stuttered nervously. "I'll try to come up with something here, but for now I guess you'll have to take them out one by one."
"Are you crazy?!?" Aelita shot back. "It's suicide!"
"Well, we have to try, don't we, Princess?" Ulrich asked as he and William made a dash for the end of the spiral path to face the Krabes. Once the four were facing XANA's army, William looked at Ulrich, and said, "You ready?"
"Ready," he replied.
"Charge!" William yelled as the two boys pulled out their swords and began melee-attacking the Krabes. Ulrich was able to block some of the lasers with his sabres and managed to jump on top of one of the Krabes, yelling "Impact!" as he thrust his sabre into the Eye before jumping to the next Krabe and doing the same. After he had taken out about five of them in this manner, he looked over to see William struggling to fend off three of them and their advancing lasers as they back him into a corner. He immediately sliced the Krabe he was on top of and cried "Super Sprint!" as he leapt off of its back, hoping he could make it to help in time, but he was half a second too late as the middle Krabe fired off a perfectly-aimed shot that William could not dodge at such close range, and just as Ulrich reached him, William was devirtualized.
"Ow…" William said as he got up from the floor of the Scanner. "Head shots hurt."
"Hey, that was my friend!" Ulrich yelled at them, causing them to turn slightly and charge their lasers to fire. "Triplicate!" Ulrich yelled as his body split. "Super Sprint!" He took off and timed a leap from the ground so that he and his two clones landed on the three Krabes' backs and he cried "Impact!" as three swords were simultaneously stabbed into the Eyes on the Krabes' backs. He lept off as his exploded, and said "Fusion!" as he raced back to where Aelita and Jacob had hidden themselves. "This is never going to work. There's just too many of them!"
"I know. It looks like it's over…" Aelita sighed in defeat as Jacob closed his eyes and thought for a moment, letting the energy spark at his fingertips… Suddenly, a vision flashed through his mind of a crashing thunderbolt from the sky, and he felt energy surge through him as he suddenly came up with an idea.
"I've got it," he muttered.
"What? You have an idea?" Aelita asked him.
"Yeah. Stand back, though; I don't want to see you two get hurt if it doesn't work right." So, once Aelita and Ulrich were safely out of range, he stood up and came out from behind the rock that they had been hiding behind, and faced the Krabes as they all turned to look at him. He closed his eyes and summoned an Energy Field in his hand, and then began focusing on lightning; on what he wanted it to be. He willed it to change, and when it he saw it wasn't working, he began to shake with exertion as he focused even more energy into his fingertips, and finally, the sphere began to glow with a bright gold color as it shifted into a mass of sparks around his first two fingers. He looped them around, leaving a trail of lightning in their path, and pulled the two fingers close to his side before thrusting them forward and releasing a massive bolt of electricity that hit the first Krabe, and then began conducting itself through the entire mass! As they took the overcharge, the Krabes squealed, and all began to explode into bits as Jacob sank down on one knee and Ulrich ran over to help him up.
"Dude! That. Was. Amazing!" he grinned as the last Krabe sank down and exploded.
"Ow…I've got a major headache now, though…" he replied with a groan.
"I'm not surprised," Jeremy answered. "You used so much energy to do that that you spent 80 life points. Aelita, go on and deactivate the Tower!" Jeremy added.
"The way is clear, Princess," Jacob weakly smiled as Aelita ran into the Tower.
"Ungh!" Odd yelled as the polymorph threw him against the wall. Yumi grabbed the pipe and struck the Jim clone on the back of the head, but the Delmas clone grabbed her arm and delivered a fierce shock through it which dropped her to her knees…
Aelita reached the second floor of the Tower and reached up to place her hand on the Interface.
The clone sent another shock through Yumi as the Jim clone put a XANA charge through Odd for the second time in three days…
Aelita looked around her as the screens began to fall, but as one of them started to move; she put her hand up to stop it, seeing something interesting. It was a file, and as she rifled through it, she found what looked to be a strand of DNA.
"Aelita, what's going on?" Jeremy asked suddenly as in the main Factory entrance, the two polymorphs vanished. Yumi got up shakily and went over to Odd, checking to make sure he was okay before phoning Jeremy. "Yumi?" he asked.
"Hey, Jeremy, we're okay," Yumi said as Odd got up.
"Yeah, never better, Einstein," he grinned.
"Okay, great!" Jeremy smiled as he turned back to the screen. "Aelita, what's up?"
"Um, Jeremy, I found a file in this Tower. It's got a lot of data in it, but its all encrypted, and there's something here that looks like a DNA strand. I can't be sure though," she muttered.
"Okay, transmit it to the Supercomputer and I'll try to analyze it. I'll bring you in," he added when the transfer process was finished.
Back in the Computer Lab, Jeremy was busy trying to decrypt the file that Aelita had found. As he left the computer to do its work, he turned around to face the other members of the group.
"I'm not entirely sure what all is in that file that you found, Aelita, but I'll work at deciphering it. For now, we have a more pressing problem. XANA's revealed that he still has Replikas in the Network that somehow survived the multi-agent system."
"It's okay, Einstein!" Odd replied cheerily.
"Right, Odd," Jacob agreed. "It doesn't matter what we're up against with XANA; whenever he attacks, we'll counterattack! And we'll find a way to stop him once and for all!"
"I know, Jacob," Jeremy agreed. "So, our first job, now that we know what we're up against, will be to rebuild the Skid," Jeremy sighed. "But I don't have any of the programs left from before. It's going to take some time."
"I'll help you with the algorithms, Jeremy," Jacob smiled. With you, me, and Aelita, we'll have the ship rebuilt in no time!"