Chapter 1, Part 3 (1/2)


Treize, holding an old-fashioned rifle in firing position, is listening intently to a voice flowing from the portable computer terminal lying on the table to his side.

The hunting ground at the OZ headquarters - it's a training area inside this ground. Even if it's only one estate, it's so wide that a soccer field can very well be placed in it. The wealth of the Romefeller foundation, standing behind OZ, cannot be demonstrated enough.

100 meters before Treize, many white targets are appearing and disappearing. It seems he has already fired a few shots. Some of the targets have a bullet hole in their center.

Reflected on the monitor is Zechs. Treize continues to adjust his aim as he listens to the report about the underwater investigation of the Gundam.

"So you have fallen behind again?" murmurs Treize after finishing listening to the situation.

"With the ultimate goal of these guys being unknown, this was to be expected. However, if you want to strike first, it must be in the Mediterranean."

Treize nods at Zechs' words.

"Maybe it will be the old Leo production site. The Alliance has thought of reinforcing the guards, shall we add a few flowers?"

The flowers most likely mean reinforcement. It's one of the typical elegant terms of Treize.

"The Middle East Aries troop may be ideal. However, the mobile suit combat capabilities vary too greatly and a cooperation with the Alliance army may not be possible."

"You want to go?"

"Excuse me?"

Zechs involuntarily checks back at Treize's question.

"Your voice tells me so."

When Treize says this while laughing softly, a pheasant flies up from behind the target, its wings rustling while they beat the air.

Without hesitation he presses the trigger of the rifle. Together with a thundering noise, the pheasant's feathers start dancing in the air.

"Show me how you shoot them down, Zechs."

Treize tells this to Zechs while watching the pheasant falling down.




At this time, Zechs changes from the underwater mobile suit carrier to the former hypersonic transporter.

Not only did he not have any success during the underwater investigation except to see the figure of a new Gundam, but he has also finished losing three excellent subordinates. For Zechs, the failure of this mission is inexcusable. Including them, he has so far lost five men and six machines, including his own. More than anything else he can't forgive himself.

They are very likely not in the water anymore. An armament and capability to act surpassing by far his presumptions... this is an enemy who can even accomplish things considered to be crazy.

These are the thoughts of Zechs, having met two Gundams unexpectedly.

For this reason, he has relinquished the underwater investigation without further ado to the Alliance and is heading now towards the Corsica base in the Mediterranean.

Then, something to strengthen these thoughts is sent from the radar of the observation satellite.

"He's acting as if he were fine with us knowing his position, isn't he. It's the suit that appeared at the Yangtze river."

Lieutenant Otto raises his voice as he looks at the print-out of the radar screen. On the radar capturing the south of the Eurasian continent, a light point is reflected. It's the still-unidentified mobile suit.

"It's quite slow. Judging by its speed, it's not a flight type" murmurs Zechs while pointing at the figures showing the lightpoint's speed.

"You can make so many different types of out one kind of suit?"

"Yes. However, in the Corsica base, we may be able to see a leftover suit whose way of moving is unknown. Then we may even crush it in that place."

Zechs smiles totally as if he's looking forward to this. After looking at the detailed data, he comes to a conclusion.

"This Yangtze river suit will not come to Corsica base ceremony. It approaches the Alliance's firepower directly. It will be a hard job no matter how heavily it's armed."

Zechs hands the print-out back to Otto and smiles bitterly.

"It's sweet while it shows itself" says Zechs.

For a moment, the figures of the two Gundam which have killed two of his subordinates come to his mind.

"If it continues like this, it may attack the Indus supply base."

"Pray they do their best. It's the only thing we can do now."

Zechs answers so calmly to Otto's words that one might think he's cold. Then he turns his mask to look forward.




Two hours later, the cargo plane arrives at the Corsica base.

Zechs gets off the plane and walks towards the base to greet Bonaparte, the Alliance commander of the Corsica base. However, he is halted at the entrance to the base command division.

"So you're saying that his Excellency Bonaparte is not here?"

Maybe the corporal who has come out to receive Zechs is just as astonished that the base commander is not on the base, since he keeps apologizing to Zechs.

"I am very sorry, Lieutenant."

Zechs smiles at the saluting corporal, thus telling him to not worry about it, then laughs bitterly.

"I guess I'm not popular..."

It probably can't be helped.

That's what Zechs thinks.

One can say that the relationship between the troops called "Specials" - the special mobile suit troops to which Zechs belongs - and the Alliance is not necessarily a good one. This is also closely related to the process of how the Specials came to be.

The "Specials" were founded because of the aim of OZ to go one step further and not only supply the Alliance with mobile suits, but also with trained soldiers. Then, the power of the Romefeller foundation behind OZ has led to them having their own force, different from the one of the Alliance. Additionally, there's the youth and ability of Treize, commander of OZ, who is also part of the managing board of the foundation. For the conservative officers of the Alliance, the quickly risen beginner is nothing but an unpleasant existence.

When Zechs wants to walk away since he couldn't do anything, a motor-bike approaches from the airport. The driver, wearing an OZ uniform calls out "Lieutenant Zechs!"

After the old-fashioned motor-bike stops while certainly scratching off the surface of the street, the driver lifts his goggles and shows his face. He's still young. He can't be more than two years apart from Zechs.

"Soldier Walker, it has been a while."

At seeing the figure of his former subordinate, traces of a smile become visible unconsciously around Zechs' mouth. He's a mobile suit pilot from the technical field, and they were acting together until two years ago.

"You haven't changed at all, Lieutenant."

Zechs approaches Walker, still mounted on the bike, and asks with a firm voice "Is there a suit available that I can use?"

"There's something in this respect that you'd like to see."

It seems Walker has come to tell him this.

"Something you want to show me?" says Zechs with astonished voice.

Without saying anything more detailed than this, Walker prompts Zechs "I'll show you."

After letting Zechs get into a car which approached from behind, Walker leads them on his bike.

The Corsica base faces the sea. The airport and the factory squeeze the rollway between them, which divides the bay into left and right. Walker leads them to a warehouse of the airport.

The halfdark interior of the warehouse is full of the peculiar smell of mobile suits, a mixture of oil and metal. But the fact that it's not very strong shows that the mobile suit stored here hasn't been used in a while.

"It's big, eh?" murmurs Zechs while walking 15 meters above ground on the catwalk used for maintenance.

It's a type of mobile suit which he sees for the first time before his eyes.

A white hull without any decoration whatsoever. The hanging right arm grips the head which is still separated from the hull.

"It seems to be a kind of original form, a number bigger than the Leo."

True to Walker's words, the entire length is one meter higher. Besides, regarding the thickness of the armour-plating and so on, there's no comparison to the Leo.

"It's an old suit, but when I looked at the data you sent from the Gundams, I was reminded of this suit which is treated as historical data from that time. It's the only suit which has a plating coming up to these data. I wasn't told why it has been manufactured. But I heard that because the height required to maintain the power according to the sketches was too big, the current mobile suit height without this necessity has become the norm.

I think the name of this suit was 'Tallgeese'."

Zechs looks again at the suit called Tallgeese.

So, this is the original form of the Gundams.

This is the machine with the original form of the mobile suits, with a height and power bigger than required, which is why it was renounced in its test stage. And it's the first suit to be constructed by the scientist group who also drafted the first vision-like Gundam.

"If this suit is completed, can it fight up to the same level as the Gundams?"

At Zechs' words, Walker nods silently, then adds "Please carry it out of this base."

"Do you feel like dying, Walker?"

Zechs stares into Walker's face. It's speech with the only thought that it makes him realize that he can't have the suit finished all by himself.

"My reason for acting this way was the meaning of what the Lieutenant has taught me, 'fight for the soldier of the future'."

"Now you are brave soldier. How many do you read?"

How many... this means how many enemies he thinks there are.

"As you have taught me, I always assume it's the biggest number of enemies possible."

Walker's reply shows that he is determined to face the five Gundams.

"The maximum is four suits however. One suit is not on its way here. I only have this information. Sorry, Walker."

"I'm grateful if it's just only one suit less, Lieutenant Zechs. See you later!"

Saluting, Walker goes away. Zechs watches after him, then leaves the warehouse in order to issue his orders to move the Tallgeese to the cargo plane standing outside.


On to Chapter 1, Part 3 (2/2)
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