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Chapter 4 Main Chapters Chapter 6

Chapter 5

"Slade, this is just a bit of an advance warning," Pres. Rara told him. "As soon as we get some more jewel-cannon robots, which should be in a day or two, we're going to move to finish the war."

"It's going to be over? Just like that?" Kent Slade was astonished.

Dr. Rara was surprised by his question, and carefully responded, "Yes, I'm going to attack the Earth Defense Force base. It'll be the effective end of the war. There's only a small amount of territory stupid Sanada can flee to, and we've got all of it surrounded."

Slowly, Kent had begun to learn some of what had gone on in this oddball world; that he was fighting the counterpart of the man who had sent him into this world, and that these gigantic fighting machines were unearthed in Japan. He therefore now understood who Dr. Rara meant by "stupid Sanada." After all his battles against Cmdr. Sanada's army, Kent wasn't inclined to call him stupid, just unlucky.

"I'll do my best, sir," Kent assured him. He wondered if the end really was in sight.

In the synthesis universe, Mrs. Nanjyoin from the other world looked up at the giant figure of Zinv. "It's very impressive," she commented. "I'm sure that the commander will thoroughly enjoy having it on his side."

"Mrs. Nanjyoin," Mitsuki Sanada told her, "he unfortunately won't get to see it very soon. I have to tell you that this slowpoke takes a month to travel between dimensions, and we take no time at all."

"It's not like I'm dawdling!" protested Kazuki as he prepared to enter the cockpit. "I have no control over how long it takes!"

"Zinv's just as much a slowpoke as he is," Mitsuki Sanada continued, "so that's why Kazuki gets to ride in it all by himself."

"There's room for two in that cockpit," Yayoi pointed out.

"Yayoi," Mitsuki Sanada glared, "we wouldn't want anyone else to be unavailable for a month, would we, now?"

Mrs. Nanjyoin was perturbed only on the inside, and said, "I'm not sure I understand. It will take us all a month to return to Commander Sanada?"

Mitsuki Sanada shook her head. "No, the rest of us should get there as soon as we activate the transporter. It's just that Kazuki and Zinv will only show up a month from now, in the other world."

Dee asked, "I wonder where they are until then?"

Ms. Hayase had said her goodbyes and taken care of some last minute details and now joined the group. She responded to Dee's question by saying, "To be entirely accurate, as soon as they undergo the transport, they are immediately placed in the other world one month in the future."

Kazuki hung back from the cockpit. "Now Dee's got me thinking; where am I until one month from now?"

"You should be used to not existing by now," Mitsuki Sanada informed him, "you didn't exist in the world where we had to fight the first time. That's why Zinv exists."

Kazuki shivered. "Yeah, but I'm never going to get used to it."

"It may not make sense, but one month in the future may be the clearest answer we may ever get," Ms. Hayase admitted. "I'm curious myself as to whether anyone else will experience any delays in transport; or whether it's possible for anyone to arrive early."

Mrs. Nanjyoin said firmly, "I believe I'll just use my signaler; I have to be certain of getting back to Commander Sanada and telling him of your arrival. I'm sure he'll want to make preparations."

"If you must, grandmother," Yayoi agreed.

The other Mrs. Nanjyoin stepped forward, and the two Mrs. Nanjyoins nodded at each other.

"We'll see you there!" Kazuki and Mitsuki Sanada told her. She bowed to everyone and pressed the button, transporting away.

Some distance away, Dr. Rara dashed forward a few steps. "Mitsuki, did you see that! It was incredible! An actual personal transport!"

"Yes, I saw it. Now Father, remember; Mother can't find out about any of this," Mitsuki Rara stressed.

"Don't worry, dear," Dr. Rara assured her, "I'm not going to tell her. I'm not going through the humiliation of being demoted by my own wife again."

Dr. Sanada couldn't resist getting a few barbs in. "Although I thought it was a cute outfit she made you wear when she took over. She made it for you, didn't she?"

"Stupid Sanada," Dr. Rara muttered. "Maybe I should just cut off all your grant money."

"You'd stop funding the greatest contender for the Nobel Prize?" Dr. Sanada inquired sarcastically.

"Doctors!" Ms. Hayase called to them from outside Zinv's hangar. "The transporters are ready!"

Dr. Rara turned to his daughter and they hugged. "Goodbye," Dr. Rara choked out.

Dr. Sanada looked at his daughter. "Goodbye, Mitsuki," he told her.

"Goodbye, Father," she told him seriously.

Mitsuki Sanada and Akane hugged each other tightly for a moment, then let go. Dee smiled weakly and said with a quaver, "Be sure to give Kumu plenty of food and water."

"We will, Dee," Akane told her. She and Dr. Sanada then hugged Dee tightly as Dee made a squeaky sigh of sadness.

Mrs. Nanjyoin and Yayoi bowed to each other; between them, that gesture said it all.

They proceeded outside, to where the wide-area mobile dimensional transporters had been set up. Kazuki powered up Zinv, causing a flash of light, and followed them. Kazuki, in Zinv, stood slightly behind the others going to the parallel world: Mitsuki Sanada, Mitsuki Rara, her bodyguard trio, Yayoi, Dee, and Ms. Hayase.

"Farewell, Kazuki," Mrs. Nanjyoin wished him. "And Zinv as well."

"Take care, Kazuki," Akane called out.

"Don't break my strength-measuring device again!" Dr. Sanada told him.

"Be sure to give me a real walloping!" Dr. Rara called to Kazuki.

"Goodbye, everyone!" Kazuki's voice broadcast. Zinv's eye glowed red, and his arm waved farewell.

"Everything's ready, Doctors," one of the researchers told Dr. Rara and Dr. Sanada. "We've used the new computers and software to ensure they'll arrive at the destination you specified."

"Here we go again," sniffed Dr. Sanada.

The massive levers were flipped, and the mobile units created a huge white bubble around the group. They were surrounded by a column of yellow energy that hazed the air. The group was dissolved and disappeared.

In the other world, they appeared on the practice field of the Earth Defense Force base, just as planned. Ms. Hayase looked about her. Except for Zinv and Kazuki, everyone was here.

Mitsuki Sanada crossed her arms and commented, "I knew it'd take forever for that slowpoke to get here."

Ms. Hayase said, "I was almost certain at least one more person would arrive earlier or later than the others. I suppose I was just wrong."

"It's just as well," Yayoi decided, "it'd be awkward if we arrived at different times; especially if they were years apart."

Commander Sanada emerged from the base and began to run towards them; the travelers preferred to use a more sedate pace to join him, except for Mitsuki Sanada, who ran to him saying, "Hi, Dad!"

The commander replied, "Hello, uh, um, what's your name again?"

"My name is Mitsuki, Dad!" she laughed at him.

"Welcome to all of you, whatever your names may be," Cmdr. Sanada told them all. "I guess most of us have already met. I'm afraid I'm going to have to ask you to use the quarters in the artifact warship for the time being; I wanted everyone to get used to them in case we had to retreat. Now that you're here, though, maybe we can destroy the RaRa Army and its Hink!"

Dee gently corrected, "Its name is Himc, Dad." She and the others shifted uncomfortably.

"What?" Cmdr. Sanada asked.

"Sir, while we will do our best," Yayoi explained, "without Zinv and Kazuki, it's nearly impossible to destroy Himc."

"Oh." The commander looked deflated.

Ms. Hayase hastened to reassure him, "Zinv should arrive here in a month."

"We're very used to all of this; it's going to turn out all right," Mitsuki Rara added.

Dee put a finger to her chin. "Commander, there's another one of me and Yayoi, isn't there?"

Commander Sanada leaned back a moment, then stood normally again. "Yes, that's right. I guess I should go introduce yourselves. Please, everyone, come in." They followed him back inside the Earth Defense Force base.

Mitsuki Sanada looked behind them, where Zinv should've been standing. "It's going to be hard waiting a whole month for that slowpoke."

Chapter 4 Main Chapters Chapter 6