"The Ambassadors of Arus."

Story by Adele
Story Copyright 2002
A story based on the series, "Voltron, The Third Dimension"

The characters of Voltron are the property of World Event Productions.  All other characters are the copyright of Adele.  Please do not use them without asking for permission.  Thank you.

Enjoy!


Chapter 23
Robeast Attack


Black Lion roared as it came alive.  Keith was seated in the lion's command chair.  Amy was with him. 

After seeing Allura safely to her Blue Lion, Keith hustled Amy with him...he figured it would be the safest place for her.

Amy was seated in a passenger chair behind Keith's command chair.  Keith turned around to make sure she was okay.  He also wanted to make sure that the harness he had latched around her wasn't too tight. 

"Are you okay back there?" he asked.

"Fine." she replied.  She was anxious to see him in action. "Go ahead!  Don't worry about me!"

Keith turned back to the controls.  He opened the COM to his team. "Okay team!  Let's do what we came here to do!" He then pulled Hunk up on the ultra wave. "Hey, big guy!  How's the Queen doing?"

Keith could see a visual of Yellow Lion's cockpit.  The Queen was behind Hunk, neatly tucked away in the passenger's chair.  Hunk turned around to the Queen. "Okay, Your Highness?" he politely asked.

"Yes, yes. Of course!" she said rather nervously. "I'm fine!"

Hunk turned back to the monitor. "She's cool, Keith!"

Keith nodded his head. "Okay!  Let's move out!"

Black Lion led the way to the sky above, followed closely behind by the other lions.  As they assembled in the air, Keith began to shout commands through the COM.  "Okay, let's get to work, team!  V-formation!"

The lions began to fall in line.  Black Lion was at the head, while on one side, Blue and Green Lions fell in line.  The other side, Yellow and Red Lions fell in line.  Their flight took on the shape of a 'V' in the sky.

As they cleared the forest area, it wasn't long before the Robeast was in sight.  It was a Hagar special...complete ugliness... with all the trimmings.

Pidge chimed in: "Whoa!  That is one ugly Robeast!" he said. "Hagar outdid herself on this one!"

"Big too!" Allura added.

"She must have been working late nights to make up that ugly monster!" Hunk added with a grimaced face. "That is one big and ugly brute!"

Lance huffed spitefully. "The bigger they are, the harder they fall!"

Keith broke up the unnecessary chatter over the COM. "Alright, let's just stick to the regs here.  No unnecessary conversation."

Lance couldn't resist the tease. "Awe, you're no fun, Mother Keith!  Please don't ground me!"

Keith snarled at Lance.  This was no time to be funny. "Let's get serious, guys!  There are villages down there, filled with people!  We have to lure this thing away from them, and into the open fields."

Keith checked his radar readouts. "Okay! Let's play 'Chase me'!   Allura, Pidge, try to get it to follow you.  Lead it away from the villages!" the Voltron Commander ordered.

"You got it, Keith!" Pidge and Allura said at once.

Blue Lion veered off in one direction, while Green Lion veered off in another.  The Robeast was huge in size.  It had the head of a giant lizard.  But its body was definitely loaded with muscles in every part of it.  It had a very long...and dangerous tail.  One swipe of that thing could knock a lion half a mile away...easily.

Blue Lion made the first pass.   Nothing.

Green Lion made the second pass.   Still Nothing.

Allura came over the COM. "Pidge, standby.  I'm going in again."

"Go for it, Princess!" Pidge replied.

Allura maneuvered Blue Lion around for another pass.  This time, however, the Robeast responded to Blue Lion's presence.  With its giant tail, the Robeast swung for Allura.

"Look out, Princess!" Pidge shouted.

The Robeast's mighty tail connected with Blue Lion, sending it spiraling through the air. 

Inside the Blue Lion, Allura screamed fearfully.  Blue Lion finally slammed hard into the ground with a mighty thud. 

Allura screamed again at the impact.

Keith, seeing that the Robeast was now heading for the stunned Blue Lion, moved his team to intercept and protect the Princess.  Black Lion positioned itself between the Princess's Blue Lion, and the Robeast.

Inside Black Lion, Amy was suppressing screams of her own by covering her mouth.  Keith shouted more commands. "Ignite Lion torches!  Fire rotary darts!  We've got to buy Allura time to get moving again!"

Rotary darts emerged from Black Lion's arsenal.  Yellow and Red Lion's opened fire on the Robeast with their Lion torches.

Keith opened a channel to Blue Lion. "Princess!  Princess!  Can you hear me?  You've got to move!  Princess!  Come in!"

Inside Blue Lion, Allura finally lifted her head up from her control board.  Shaking the cobwebs from her mind, she answered Keith's hail.  "I'm okay, Keith!"

"Then lift off!" he shouted. "I need you in the air!"

Blue Lion got to its feet, and launched into the air, maneuvering around the Robeast.

Keith looked at the size of their foe. "He's too big!  Can't fight him with just the lions!  We need Voltron!"

Hunk, in the Yellow Lion, turned to Queen Serena. "Okay Queenie!  Hang on to your crown!  Time to kick some Robeast butt!"

Queen Serena just held on tighter to  the arms of her chair.  This ride was proving to be more than she had bargained for.

Keith grabbed the control lever on Black Lion's console, turning it upward to activate the Voltron sequence. "Let's form Voltron!  Activate interlocks!  Dyno-therms connected! Infracells up Mega-thrusters are go!"

GO VOLTRON FORCE!

The lions screamed through
the air upward into the sky,
their individual colors streaking
behind them. Suddenly, there
was a flash, and then, a brilliant
white light surrounded the lion ships.

Keith called out the commands:
"Form feet and legs!"

The Blue and Yellow Lions came
together, bending and twisting to form
the giant limbs that would be Voltron's legs.
They snapped into
place with a loud metal click.

"Form arms and torso!" he shouted next.

Red and Green Lions formed the mighty
arms of Voltron, also clicking
to the Black Lion, that had now
formed the torso of Voltron.

"And I'll form the head!" Keith said finally, as the mouth of Black
Lion opened wide to reveal the face of the mighty robot warrior.

The Black Lion's ears moved away from the head until they resembled to very large, yellow horns protruding from Voltron's head.

With a mighty clash of its robot lion arms slamming together, each lion roared as the sequence was completed.  When the brilliant light dimmed, Voltron stood proud and tall, and ready for battle.

Keith pulled up Voltron's radar. "Pidge...scan for weaknesses!" he said to his techno-whiz.

"I hate to bring this up...but we've got more company!" Allura said over the COM.

"I see them!" Keith shouted, as he read his radar.

Sitting quietly in the rear, Amy poked her head around to see what Keith acknowledged he saw. "What it is, Keith?" she asked.

"Doom Fighters...coming in fast." He responded. Keith turned around briefly to look at Amy. "You're still fastened in, right?"

"Yes!  Of course I am, Keith." she replied.

"Good." He said, turning back around. "It gets bumpy from here.  I don't want to worry about you, too."

Amy suddenly got another warm feeling at the sound of his words. "He worries about me!" she thought. "Maybe..."

But she didn't have time to think about it for too long.  She heard Lance over the COM.

"Hey, Keith! Incoming...they're preparing an attack run!" Lance shouted.

"I read you, Lance...100 ships, incoming." Keith said, running his hands across his console.

"Hmmm...seems to me like Lotor misses you, Princess!" Lance teased. "He's sending out a lot of ammo to bring you back!"

"Well, he can send all the ammo he wants!" Keith shouted, a tone of anger apparent in his voice. "She's not going back to him!  He'd better get used to that!"

"I don't think Lotor is going to be easy to convince of that, Keith." Allura added.

"Voltron is all the convincing he needs!" Keith replied. "Pidge!  Where's my weakness report?"

"Got it, Commander!" Pidge said. "There's a computer circuit board on the Robeast's left side...just below it's shoulder socket."

"Okay!  Let's get rid of these Doom Fighters first!  Lion torches!" Keith shouted.

Blue and Yellow Lions opened their mouths,
sending flames toward the
approaching attack squads.
Voltron's arms raised forward in front of
him. The Red and Green Lions follow
suit with their breath of fire.

The lion's fire immediately wiped out a
quarter of the attacking
ships.



Lotor's battle cruiser, The Revenge, hovered close by.  On board, Lotor was sitting in the command chair, shouting over the ultra wave.

"You idiots!  Surround Voltron on all sides!  Don't try to take him out from the front!" Then he turned his head abruptly around to face Hagar. "Listen Witch!  Send your Robeast in to attack Voltron, while the fighters keep him busy!  Have the Robeast concentrate his attack on the connecting lever to the Voltron's right leg.  If we can disable Blue Lion's release plate, we can separate the Princess from the rest of Voltron, then destroy him, and get the Princess!"

"As you command, Sire!" she hissed, then turned to wave her wand.



The Robeast suddenly came alive. He heard Hagar's voice in his automated ears. "Robeast! Attack the connecting lever, just above Voltron's right leg!  The Blue Lion is your target!"



Meanwhile, the Doom Fighters began to surround Voltron.

Lance was becoming amused. "Oh!" he chuckled. "So...they want to play chicken now, do they?"

In Voltron central command, Keith was not amused at all. "Lance!" he shouted. "Stay with the rest of us!  This is serious!  I think they're going to try to divert our attention so that the Robeast can come in after us!"

Keith scanned the Robeast's activity level...and sure enough, it was starting to turn toward them too. "Check your radar!  That Robeast is coming this way!  Get ready!"

"We're surrounded by Fighters, Keith!" Allura reported.

"I'm getting a tingly feeling here, Keith!" Hunk added.

"Okay, let's get some breathing room!" Keith said. "Jet up!"

Voltron began to move upward away from the surrounding Fighters.  The Robeast quickly moved in and began firing rounds at Blue Lion, as it had been instructed to do.  The missiles pelted precisely into the release plate that held Blue Lion to Black Lion's leg.

"AH-H-H-H!" Everyone screamed, feeling the impact.

Keith surveyed damage. "So...that's their game!  They're trying to separate us from Blue Lion!"

"What?" Lance shouted. "How?"

"If they can get Blue Lion to release from the rest of Voltron...." Pidge shouted.

"The Princess will be separated from us!" Hunk said out loud.

"And...an easy target for Lotor!" Lance finished the thought.

"Princess!  Are you okay?" Keith interrupted the COM noise. "Answer me... Allura, come in!"

There was no response for a couple of seconds.  Then she came on.  "I'm okay!"

"Listen, Princess!  That Robeast is trying to separate you from the rest of us!  I want you to target the Robeast, and send out repelling counter-attacks.  The rest of us will concentrate on those remaining Doom Fighters and the Robeast."

"Okay" she responded, her voice trembling. "I read you!"

"Stay with me, Princess!" Keith urged. "Just concentrate on the attacks from the Robeast. We'll do the rest!"

"I can do it, Keith!" she replied, her voice more steady.

Keith nodded, then gave orders to his team. "Okay gentlemen...let's plow the road!  Ready, Princess?"



In Blue Lion, Allura cuddled her left arm.  She was almost sure it was broken from the attack. Wincing in pain, she knew working the controls would be difficult, but hearing Keith's plea to her, gave her the determination she needed.  Besides, she didn't want to appear weak in front of him or the other boys.  And she didn't want him to find out that she had been hurt.

"Yes, Keith.  I'm ready!" she replied.

Keith smiled. "That's my girl!" he said, somewhat affectionately.  Then he addressed the rest of the team. "Okay team!  Let's get rid of the rest of those ships!  Boomerang spinning laser blades!"

From the mouth of the Red Lion, the Spinning laser blade appeared. 

"Now!" shouted Keith.

The Red Lion arm pulled back, and with a mighty force, flung the weapon at the Doom Fighters. One by one, it destroyed the Fighters, as it went through each of them. It circled back around, toward Voltron.  Red Lion opened its mouth, retrieving the blade.

"Okay!  Great job!" Keith commended. "Now, to the Robeast.  Allura, are you still with us?"

"Yes Keith!  I'm here!" she replied.

"Good! Remember...repel all attacks from our friend out there!  We can't afford to have you separate from Voltron!" he reminded. "The rest of us with take care of that Robeast."

"I'm ready!" Allura said.

But in Blue Lion... she struggled. 

Her arm was becoming increasingly swollen, and the pain was increasing.  Her reaction time was going to be a problem. 

But she had to try. 

Her team was counting on her.  If  the Robeast succeeds in separating her from Voltron... that's it.  Game over.   For the sake of this planet, her own future, and the lives of her friends, she couldn't allow that to happen.

Keith looked behind to Amy. "Hang on.  This is going to get interesting from here." He said with a wink.

Amy grabbed onto the arms of the passenger chair she was restrained to. She was so far, very impressed with Keith's command skills.   Years of hard study and training appear to have paid off for him.  He was indeed, one of the finest officers that Galaxy Garrison has ever produced. She couldn't help but be filled with pride on his behalf.

The Robeast started its attack again, aimed directly at the Blue Lion.  Keith sent the alert. "Incoming!  Return fire!"

Allura fired her Ion darts at the oncoming attack.  She succeeded in destroying most of the missile fire. Hunk in the Yellow Lion took care of the rest.

"Got you covered, Princess!" he said from Yellow Lion.

"Thank you, Hunk!" she smiled.

"Fire Electro-Force Cross!" Keith shouted.

From the Insignia Crest, came forth a giant cross that flew quickly at the Robeast.  As it landed on it, an electrical impulse surrounded the Robeast, seemingly stunning it momentarily. But it was only momentary.

The Robeast quickly recovered and immediately fired another round at the Blue Lion.

Allura had reloaded her weapons, but this time, the firepower being shot at her was too much for her to handle. She sent out counter-fire, but missed several missiles this time. And several more were coming at her again.

"Princess!" Keith shouted. "Hunk!  Help her out!"

"Trying!" Hunk shouted back, returning fire at the Robeast.

Several missiles found the way to Blue Lion's release plate.  Voltron shook with a force that sent him sprawling to the ground with a thud.

"Princess!  You've got to be faster than that!" Keith shouted angrily over the COM.

Pidge came to Allura's defense. "Keith!  She's doing the best she can!"

"Not good enough, Pidge!  She's got to out-think her attackers!" he replied, quieting his temper a bit. "Princess...Princess... come in!"

"I'm sorry, Keith!" she sighed. "I am trying...but I...."

Keith exhaled impatiently at her. "I know, Princess!  But I need you to try harder!  Okay?"

"Okay." She said quietly, deciding to keep the broken arm issue out of it for now.

The Robeast landed in front of Voltron.  Keith immediately got Voltron to his feet.  The Robeast charged at Voltron with savage force, slamming him back to the ground. A s he landed, the Robeast jumped on top of Voltron, pinning him to the ground.  Then, with its
free arm, the Robeast began a frontal assault on the Blue Lion.

With brute force, the Robeast began to tear at the plate that held Blue Lion to the rest of Voltron.

Inside Blue Lion, Allura began screaming in terror.  The force of each blow was causing circuitry on her control console to short out.  She not longer had control of her weapon systems.

She shouted to the others over the COM, "I'm in trouble!  My circuits are shorting out! Keith...do you read?"



Meanwhile, Keith was screaming commands into the COM overtop of the Princess's voice. "Lance!  Pidge!  See if you...can ...knock it off balance!"

Lance and Pidge both raised their lions up, and with their teeth, dug hard into the shoulders of the Robeast, in a desperate attempt to cease its pounding on the Blue Lion.  It worked... temporarily. 

It, at least, brought the Robeast close enough in range for Voltron's eye beams to take a crack at it.

Keith activated the eye beams, which shot out with such intensity, that the Robeast was knocked off from on top of Voltron.

"Move!" Keith shouted.

Voltron stood up, and jumped back away from the Robeast.  Keith took a look behind him. Amy was still grasping onto the arms of the chair.  She was shaken, but okay.

"Damage report, Blue Lion!" he said to the Princess, turning his attention back from Amy to his duty.

Allura came on the COM's ultra wave. "I have no weapon control!  My radar sensors have been totally wiped out!  My navigational controls are disabled too, Keith!"

Keith quickly assessed the situation. "Are you hurt, Allura?" he asked her, seeing her suddenly heavily favoring her left arm over the ultra wave.

She hesitated in answering him.  Keith repeated the question. "Allura!  I said, are you hurt? Your arm...what's wrong?"

"I...I think my left arm is broken, Keith!" she announced reluctantly. "But I can still function!" she added, hoping to remove any vulnerability issues he might be thinking of her.

"Can you immobilize it some how?" he asked her.

"No, I have nothing" she managed. "I'll just be careful."

"Keep your arm close to your body, to minimize injury!" Keith replied to her, swinging his attention to his teen whiz. "Pidge, what's the status on the Blue Lion's release plate?"

Pidge scanned for damage. "It looks pretty bad, Keith." he replied.

"Will it hold for us to attempt a lion head attack?" Keith asked.

"It should, but if we have to stay in the air for a prolonged period of time, the plate is going to give way, and Blue Lion will detach!"

"Hunk...how's Queen Serena fairing?" Keith asked Yellow Lion's pilot next.

"She passed out from fright several minutes ago.  She looks okay though!" Hunk replied with a chuckle in his voice.

The Robeast started to make another run at Voltron.  Keith reacted, and Voltron was forced to head for the air.

"Pidge, monitor the stress on that plate!" Keith commanded, as Voltron ascended into the
air. "And keep me advised!  I might have to keep us up here for awhile!"

"Got it!" Pidge yelled.

"Allura, just hang on!" Keith shouted. "If that plate goes suddenly, you're going to fall away from us.  Be ready for ground impact!"

"Okay!" she replied.

"And protect that arm somehow!" the Voltron Commander added.

"Stop worrying about me!" she said in a raised voice. "Get rid of this Robeast...before it kills someone on the ground!"

Keith activated the Dyno-thrusters. "Prepare for lion head attack!" he commanded. "I'm starting the power build-up!"

Lights began to flash in sequence.  The turbo generators inside of each robot lion began to build with power.

Behind each pilot chair, safety harness bars shot out, and swung upward. "Lock safety bar in place!" Keith ordered his team, as he grabbed his from above his head, swinging it down around him.

In the Yellow Lion, Hunk hopped out of his pilot chair and ran over to fasten the bar over the unconscious Queen.  He then quickly returned to his seat and pulled his own bar down securely in front of himself.

In Black Lion, Amy was told to do the same.  When Keith was sure she was secured tightly by the bar, he then called out to the rest of the team...

"Ready?" Keith asked, as he began tracking the Robeast's progression up toward Voltron.

"Ready!" Everyone shouted.

Keith gripped his controls, sweat pouring down this face. "Stand by, everyone...stand by..."

Keith was waiting for just the right moment to launch the lion heads.  If he fired too early, they could either miss the target, or not have the damaging impact he needed to disable the robot monster.

The Robeast grew closer.

Keith waited...

Everyone waited...

Suddenly, Keith's target control lit up and beeped. "NOW!" he shouted. "Lion head attack!"

He squeezed the controls, releasing Blue, Green, Yellow and Red Lion heads.  All four detached from their robot bodies, and went charging out at the unsuspecting Robeast.

"Come on...come on..." Keith coaxed quietly. "Do it...!"

The lion heads banked around, and immediately found their target.  Each lion head penetrated the chest area of the massive Robeast, ripping circuits away from the inside out.  As the lion heads emerged from the other side, the Robeast faltered, and began to list.

"Lion heads...return!" Keith commanded, initiating the retrieval sequence.

Each lion head returned to its proper place.  But when the Blue Lion locked back into place, the release plate shifted.  Blue Lion shook momentarily.  Allura held her breath as the shaking stopped. 

She opened a channel to Keith. "I've got a problem!"

Keith immediately knew what she meant. "Pidge!  The release plate!  What's happening?"

Pidge pulled up his scanners again. He could feel the blood rush out of his face as he saw the damaged. "Keith!  It's literally hanging by threads!  It's not going to hold much longer!  We need to get back to the ground!"

"We need to finish off the Robeast first!" Lance shouted.

"But... the Princess?" Hunk asked. "If she falls from this height..."

"Form Blazing Sword!" Keith shouted,
deciding not to sit and waste
time debating the possibilities.

The Green and Red Lions
came together with a metal thud.
As they separated, a bright energy
light appeared, taking on the shape
of a sword.  When the light faded,
Red Lion had the handle of the Blazing Sword in its mouth.

"Ready... Attack!" Keith commanded.

Voltron moved in quickly and cleanly sliced the weakened Robeast with an "X" motion.  Keith quickly moved Voltron away, as the Robeast suddenly exploded.  Shock waves from the explosion flew through the air, slamming into Voltron.

That was all it took for Blue Lion to detach from Voltron.

"Keith!" shouted Pidge. "The plate!  Blue Lion's slipping away!"

Keith looked at his configuration board.  He could see Blue Lion's position was moving downward away from them.

"No!" he shouted. "PRINCESS!  HANG ON!"

She was screaming in the lion, watching the sky from the cockpit window as she quickly descended downward toward the ground.

"Do you have flight control?" Keith quickly asked her. "Can you reconfigure to lion form?"

"No!  I have nothing!" she cried. "I'm on free fall!"

"Brace for impact, Allura!" Lance shouted.

Keith flipped off the Voltron sequence. "Lions...detach...now!"

Each remaining Lion separated from Black Lion, returning to normal configuration.  Hunk was the first to return to normal.  He immediately dove after the Blue Lion.  Pidge started after him.  Lance quickly followed.

Black Lion was the last to dive. Keith shouted to Hunk over the COM.  "Hunk!  Throw on your tractor beams!"

"Will do!" Hunk shouted.

Pidge suddenly noticed his radar. "Lotor!" he shouted.

The Revenge was coming up along side of Yellow Lion. "Look out, Hunk!" Pidge shouted.

The Revenge sent out a blast that directly hit Yellow Lion, knocking it completely off course of the Blue Lion.

"NO!" Lance cried out. "ALLURA!"

Keith shouted in anger, barreling his fist into the arm of his chair.  Before he could think of another thing, Blue Lion had crashed to the ground.

"PRINCESS!" Keith cried. "PRINCESS!"

The Revenge immediately descended on the now grounded Blue Lion leg.  Hunk had swung around in Yellow Lion; furious that Lotor fouled up the only opportunity they had to stop the Blue Lion from crashing.  He immediately opened fire on the Revenge.

Keith began shouting at him through the COM. "Hunk!  Hunk!  Disengage your attack! Repeat!  Disengage!"

"Allura could be dead now because of him!" Hunk flared back. "She's not going alone!"

Pidge was taking a reading for life signs in the Blue Lion. "Hunk!  The Princess is alive! Repeat, she's alive!"

Keith shouted again at Hunk. "Get back, Yellow Lion!  You can't take him on by yourself!  You have Queen Serena in there with you!  You are endangering her life as well!  Repeat... Yellow Lion...disengage attack!"

Hunk remembered his precious cargo, and reluctantly broke off pursuit of the Revenge.

Keith shouted once again. "We need to work together on this!  Everyone...fire all weapons at the Revenge!  We have to keep it away from Blue Lion!"

All lions opened fire on Lotor's ship. Without his entire fleet with him, and with no Fighters left to protect his ship, he had no alternative but to back off of his pursuit of the Princess...for now.

But Hagar had left a surprise for the Voltron Force back at the village.  One they would not soon forget.  The thought of that made him content in leaving the Princess.

From the command center on the bridge of the Revenge, Lotor face produced a sinister smile.

"If I can't have you, Allura," he said in a whispered voice, "then no one can."


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