— Maxwell the Fox
The episode summaries for The Moonlight Pledge, the final story-arc in Dimitri Chronicles: Reign of Darkness. Following shortly after the events of Oblivion of Shadows, this arc follows the perspective of an eight-year-old fox named Maxwell and his adventures throughout his seemingly peaceful life...
Episode Thirty-Seven: The Moonlight Pledge
The episode commences a few years after a mysterious indigo-colored thunderstorm covered Mobius in an instant and then disappeared without a trace in a single evening; the day became dubbed The Darkest Day worldwide. Without direct casualties officially recorded, the population had since recovered from the sudden shock and retained their normal lives... That is what most believe, anyway.
A transition to the capital of the United Federation in the northeastern continent of Eurish, Central City, occurs. It was nighttime, raining, and most people at this hour are home with their families, but the city's silence is broken by a Mobian woman holding a basket, running away while holding it with all of her might!
The woman soon finds herself in the doorsteps of a large and wide establishment that contrasts with the modern buildings around it, and she leaves the wooden basket there, revealing a little newborn inside. After a moment of hesitation, she pulls out a small syringe out of her lab-coat and injects it into the baby's arm.
Suddenly, the baby starts to scream and cry as the ground slightly shakes. However, as the woman picks up and sings a soothing lullaby as she holds the child in her arms, he calms down and his white aura fades. Placing him back on the basket, she leaves a note beside him, knocks on the door, and runs away.
"Please be strong... Just like your father was."
After the establishment's door opens and the people see the child with a note with his name written and a gunshot can be heard in the distance, the episodes makes another transition to eight years later. _____________________________________________________________________________________
The episode features the large setting of the famous orphanage: Wingstrong Orphanage. Boasting three main mansions which surround the area, they serve as dormitories for the orphaned individuals. Between the mansions, there is a large playground which they could play and socialize. Parents eager to adopt someone would see them all playing in little groups. It is seemingly peaceful...
However, an insider would be savvier than that. The little groups the orphanage's children separated themselves into were actually more complex than just emotional affinity. Some had more power of others. Everyone inside knew there are three factions and the factionless.
Genesis is the largest and most influential faction. Many of the bigger teenagers joined it because of the absolute power it had over the others; even the staff mysteriously did not do anything about them. On the other hand, the Saturnites were once an independent faction but now work as pawns for them as well.
The Dreamcasters are the most mysterious of the three known factions. No one knows much about their true identities and whereabouts. Few people claim to have seen them vanish into thin air more than once. Also, the ones that were not recruited for any would be the factionless. While they are constantly pushed around by others because of their supposed inferiority, they usually tend to become adopted.
The two bigger factions would also host something they call the Vogel Ceremony. Every week, supposedly for nothing more than the display of power and sadism, they would pick someone factionless to get pummeled in the center of the playground, watched by everyone, when the staff members went to sleep at midnight...The status quo is absolute. It would take more than one person to end it all. _____________________________________________________________________________________
The episode makes a transition to the current Vogel Ceremony. Many of the factionless, Saturnites, and Genesis gather around in the playground.The leader behind everything, a tall, handsome teenage masked Mobian whose true name is not known but everyone calls him Fantasmo, makes his weekly speech.
Bearing sleek clothes and a wondrous cape, the tyrant hiding his true identity with a mask that covers half his face; the leaders of every faction commonly wore clothing far fancier than the rest.
The bird mentions to the scared orphans how cruel the outside world is. War, disease, violence... Fantasmo makes sure to strike the fear of the unknown in their hearts of the parentless. He claims that he will keep everyone safe from such suffering as long as they pledge loyalty to him. It was all for a noble cause.
Consequently, he must prepare them for what would happen if they try to go against his rule...
On command, the Saturnites throw their factionless victim in the center of the playground. Despite not being bound to a rope, he radiated a mysterious red static that renders him immobile. The hapless individual attempts his best to break through his tight situation, though it seems to be to no avail...
The episode concludes itself when Fantasmo is handed his wooden stick and tries to hit the factionless child while laughing. However, as he is about to deliver the strike...
"No way this is happening again."
No one knew where that voice came from. All he saw was a white blur and his victim gone.
Episode Thirty-Eight: The Moonlight Pledge II
The episode commences sometime after the events of the previous episode. With the Vogel Ceremony crashed some days prior, the Genesis and Saturnites had since become alerted on whatever could threat their absolute tyranny. While the victim told others when interrogated that he could not see who saved him, it is rather uncertain whether he really saying the truth or not.
Among the crowded hallways of one of the orphanage's dormitories, a small little whistling eight-year-old fox wanders around; boasting the same blue eyes as he did when he was very little. Maxwell the Fox is introduced. The most nonchalant among his peers, he seems innocent and harmless to all!
Maxwell was the indirect symbol of hope for those tormented under the Genesis rule, despite having absolute no interest in joining a faction or the factionless. He was always in an unwavering good mood that either inspired or annoyed others, though how come he was never picked for the sadistic ceremony ever... _____________________________________________________________________________________
The episode then makes another transition.
In the middle of the night, when people are supposed to be sleeping in their dormitories, Maxwell silently walks around the halls, whistling a soothing tune he overheard the staff singing during the day. It is revealed that most of the walls beside him are covered in green spray paint with phrases mocking the Genesis. Indeed, everyone knew there was a prankster on the loose that seemed to vanish out of thin air...
Reaching the empty playground, Maxwell takes a deep breath and grins. Initially stretching, he soon begins to dash around. However, his running speed is shown to be more than just ordinary. Just like a speeding blur that is barely visible to the common eye, Maxwell's super-speed is formally introduced!
His affinity with his speed is natural, but Maxwell still needs practice. And so, almost every single night, the little fox sneaks into the playground to run; at this time, he would not bump into anyone. Running at speeds most the average human or Mobian would not be able to see, he loved this adrenaline rush and the fun!
Maxwell was seemingly born with this supernatural speed but never told anyone about it. It was the reason he never took part in the Vogel Ceremony; people would not be able to catch him whenever chosen. Alternatively, his participation in such event shifted as of late; he began rescuing the captured factionless because he believes the whole ceremony is dumb and people should not be treated that way. _____________________________________________________________________________________
However, while running, Maxwell notices that he is not the only child that is awake at such hour. Stopping himself in his tracks and investigating the noises he heard from behind the dormitory building, the white fox sees another child cornered by two much larger Mobians who apparently were from the Saturnites.
The other fox is roughly Maxwell's height, boasting green-colored fur and very blue-colored eyes, shoes, and a bandanna scarf on his neck. Surrounded, he feels petrified as the other two teenagers claim to have discovered his true identity and faction affiliation. They were ordered to kidnap him in pieces.
As the grinning menacing duo charge their punches, a familiar white blur appears right in front of them. When they finally throw their punch, they hit a concrete wall; their victim suddenly vanished from sight. Confused, they start to look around. They are not supposed to fail their mission.
The episode concludes itself when the duo notice that the ones they are looking for are feet away. They see the two foxes together; Maxwell is seen with a grin, and the green one is not even sure of what just happened!
Episode Thirty-Nine: The Moonlight Pledge III
The episode commences moments after the previous episode. With eight-year-old Maxwell swiftly saving his fellow green child fox from members of the Saturnites, everyone accepts for him is clueless as to what is going on. How could the green fox suddenly vanish with a white blur from below their noses just like that?
Maxwell, feet away from the menacing teenagers, asks the fox if he is okay. As the child nods, the white oblivious canid tells the others that picking on kids is wrong and they should leave him alone.
The teenagers then crack their knuckles, snickering, and ask him what could little innocent Maxwell do about it. They continue by mentioning that they should beat him up too as a bonus for interfering.
As the Saturnites walk closer to the little foxes, the green one starts to shudder, but Maxwell grins.
"Can you keep up with me?" _____________________________________________________________________________________
The episode makes another transition to few minutes after.
Within one side of the playground, some noise could be heard from the battle. The teenagers attempt their best to catch the white canid and pummel him but are surprised by his speed that makes him barely visible to their eye. Unable to hit him even once and overwhelmed, they become very tired!
Using his supernatural speed's momentum to boost the power of his rather pathetic strikes, Maxwell defeats them without himself suffering damage, delivering the final blow to knock both unconscious!
Without having the chance of processing what just occurred, the green canid is awestruck by the turn of events. He could have taken this chance to vanish from the scene, but he simply froze, wide-mouthed. He has never witnessed such speed before in his life. Something, like renewed hope perhaps, ignited in him.
After Maxwell stops himself and tells himself they were far too slow, he is approached the green canid. The latter, excitedly, tells him he is grateful for his humble interference and that his speed is way past awesome. As the small white fox says it was no problem and inquires why did they plan to attack him, the other kid introduces himself as Lapis the Fox, a founding member and scout of the Dreamcasters.
Soon after a firm friendship between the two is created, Lapis attempts to recruit Maxwell to his faction, to no avail. It is not all for naught, however; the white canid says he would think about it tomorrow... _____________________________________________________________________________________
The episode makes another transition to the morning after.
Maxwell did not find the teenagers that attacked him anywhere in the establishment. While he believes they were adopted by someone else, those aware of their failure have reached a more eerie conclusion...
Overnight, the little fox became one of the top targets of Genesis and the Saturnites due to his blatant opposition. The nonchalant eight-year-old, however, remained unaware of such thing despite successfully avoiding them unconsciously whenever they attempt to catch him. There is no sign of Lapis, either.
However, as Maxwell walks around alone through the orphanage, he bumps into someone else... He encounters the Genesis leader, Fantasmo, looking down at him beneath the mask that hid his face! As the two formally clashed for the first time, the latter coldly makes few questions about Maxwell's idealism.
"I wonder... Is there any remaining light in the dark, outside world beyond these walls?"
"...Huh? As long as the sun is there, light will always shine through the darkness!"
Despite Maxwell's confused tone on his voice, he really did answer such philosophical question with his view on the world, albeit in his own childish way; light represents good and the Sun represents the good people!
The figure is appalled by such answer and shakes his head. As the fox was about to inquire what was such confusing question about, Fantasmo cracks his knuckles, emitting some mysterious red electric static, and tells the child was wrong and he would make sure to make him understand how the world truly is...
The episode concludes itself when Maxwell hears loud noises coming from the other end of the long hallway. The child is surprised by them and decides to check them out! As he dashes towards such direction, Fantasmo notices the fast child looked as if he was a white blur while moving...
...and then he has a recollection of the previous Vogel Ceremony.
Episode Forty: The Moonlight Pledge IV
The episode commences as Maxwell uses his speed to dash through the mansion's long hallway. Many additional derogatory graffiti messages towards the Genesis can be seen on the walls. Curious about the loud noises, the little canid notices many teenagers from different factions are ganging up on someone else: a green female fox about his height and age, bearing a striking color resemblance to Lapis.
With a spray-paint can on her hands, the well-dressed female canid is surrounded by malicious grunts. Believing he should do something about it and save the girl, at great speeds, Maxwell suddenly grabs her and holds her while dashing. The grunts, initially appalled, then chase after them!
In the spur of the moment, the female green canid on Maxwell's arms reaches out her hand to the wall, as if attempting to aim her hand at one specific location. As the two foxes close their eyes and with no one near, the supposed wall made of concrete instantly turns around when the green fox's hand touches it!
Just when Genesis grunts behind them finally attempt to catch up, the teenagers notice the children were no where to be found; they believe Maxwell and the other girl vanished through thin air again. Their half-masked boss, standing right behind them, starts releasing red static from his hands again, impatient... ____________________________________________________________________________________
As the wall turns, the children head through a tunnel system that leads underground. Rolling around in a great uncontrollable speeds while screaming, for it seemed as matter of few minutes, they finally enter the single location the rusty, old tunnels lead: a secret room under the orphanage.
They land at a conveniently-placed giant pillow leaning beside the wall. It was probably put there to prevent harm to those that head through the tunnels at inappropriate speeds. Both children were very dizzy.
The underground room was rather small, and nothing like Maxwell has ever seen.
There were no windows, no light-bulbs, but a variety of lit candles surrounding small cushions; they compensate for the lack of electricity. On one side of the room, a table with tools and glass flasks can be seen along with other materials the little fox never even heard of that shined light through the darkness.
Maxwell is greeted by an awkward-looking wolf. Wearing a white trench-coat and small glasses, the tall male with very messy hair introduces himself as Colin and helps him up. The cute green canid fixes the ribbon on her head and, after cleaning her clothes, looks at Maxwell and takes a deep breath...
... before loudly screaming at him, asking what in the world was he thinking and that she did not need any help from him to escape from those messily punks! Startled and with a slightly lower voice than hers, Maxwell claims that her being surrounded from all directions surely looked like she was in trouble...
After a small argument between children, Colin meekly inquires the reason the white canid is there in their base. The green canid, recomposing herself, tells Maxwell that she has been observing him and is aware of his tremendous speed-- and so, she introduces herself as Lazuli the Fox, leader of the Dreamcasters!
And so, she invites Maxwell to join them. While Maxwell is initially reluctant due to Lazuli's bad attitude and refuses, the green canid grinned and mentioned that she expected him to refuse...
...After all, only the coolest kids in the orphanage deserved to be in her faction, anyway...
Taunted, the episode concludes itself as Maxwell is tricked into wanting to become part of the Dreamcasters!
Episode Forty-One: The Moonlight Pledge V
The episode commences as Lazuli gathers the other members of the Dreamcasters around in the center of their base. Maxwell questions her about the disappearance of the absent member Lapis, but she tells him that her lazy twin brother might be elsewhere. Colin whispers that Lapis never attends the meetings...
Lazuli starts the meeting by mentioning how her faction is currently attempting to break the Genesis tyranny in the orphanage and plans for revolution in the name of peace. Her faction might be small, but she assures him that each member was worth a dozen of Genesis and Saturnites in terms of skill.
Colin explains to Maxwell that the orphanage is older than everyone believes. Lots of secret passages were created within the establishment by former orphans, hence why people believe the members of the Dreamcasters vanish into thin air. In addition, their secret base was originally the home of some other group that existed long before the existence of the current factions!
The leader heard from Lapis, the faction's scout, that Central City in two days would be celebrating with fireworks due to some of the news that the planet's greatest squad from the military organization known as the Guardian Units of Nations would be returning to Mobius in months after annihilating aggressive alien races in outer space. The orphanage owner's human son would be given snaps to celebrate.
Indeed, Lazuli is the infamous prankster that covered the walls of the orphanage with spray paint featuring degrading, childish insults towards the Genesis. She explains that the spray paint, developed by the chemist of the faction Colin, is incredibly flammable and they are planning on burning on the Genesis base down in two days by acquiring the snaps from the orphanage owner's son.
"...B-But burning everything down wouldn't hurt other innocent people?"
"...No, you dunce! We only want to give them a good scare; make them lose their reputation!"
The innocent white canid nods and agrees with her reasoning. As the meeting goes on, it is decided that he would be the one to take the snaps because he was the fastest among them.
It was far too late at night. Tomorrow is another day. _____________________________________________________________________________________
The episode makes a transition to the next morning, one day before the fireworks.
Within the orphanage, Maxwell is a wanted figure among the Genesis and Saturnites. Numerous grunts wandered around the establishment in packs and even intimidated the factionless all in order to search for the one little brat that is too fast for his own good and the stability of their tyranny...
Little did they know, however, is that Maxwell, despite being so young, developed some parkour skills when he was practicing new moves with his speed. And so, right below their noses, the little canid stealthily reaches the orphanage owner's son's room. It was much more luxurious than he had anticipated!
And yet, the human teenager is a heavy sleeper that always seems to sleep until it is past one in the afternoon, according to Lapis' reports. It is a piece of cake for Maxwell to silently infiltrate into the room and grab the snaps he was ordered to take! All is going according to plan flawlessly...
Maxwell exits the room with the snaps in hand and dashes forward toward the nearest secret passage. However, as he is gaining speed, he experiences a speed bump and crashes on the ground!
As the little fox massages his head wondering what happened, someone stands in his way. The teenage Mobian cheetah, wearing a green cap and awesome shoes, undoubtedly dressed well enough to be the leader of a faction. The cheetah introduces himself as Scalar the Cheetah, the leader of Saturnites!
Scalar holds the snaps he took from Maxwell when the latter fell, throwing it up and down as he wags his long tail. Grinning smugly, he tells Maxwell that the brat is interfering with Fantasmo's rule and shall be taken care of accordingly by the self-proclaimed fastest being within the orphanage's walls.
The episode makes a transition to moments later. After a sudden clash of speed and might, Maxwell is promptly able to overwhelm Scalar. The latter's acceleration, as a cheetah, was impressive, but his speed and reflexes overall were not able to match to the little fox. Sitting down, the leader of the Saturnites mentions that Fantasmo will be able to defeat a speedster like him easily...
Maxwell, oblivious to the threat, helps Scalar stand and assures him that Fantasmo will be defeated. That way, the Saturnites like him would become free and would not need to act evil anymore; the child knows Scalar is merely being used a pawn, but is not inherently bad, as felt from his movements.
Scalar, in disbelief and seen through, snickers at himself. He admits that Maxwell has completely defeated him and truly deserves the title as the "number one speedster" of the Wingstrong Orphanage. Throwing back the snaps, the cheetah tells Maxwell that the little fox would look away that time...
They both wink and part ways in a flash.
The episode concludes itself after that. _____________________________________________________________________________________
Episode Forty-Two: The Moonlight Pledge VI
The episode commences many hours after the events of the previous one. Befriending the leader of the Saturnites, Maxwell was able to get the snaps needed to put Lazuli's plans into action. The amount of such faction's activity has significantly decreased overtime, but the Genesis started to become increasingly violent towards the factionless. Maybe they were taunting the Dreamcasters to show themselves!
The chilly breeze and cold temperatures begin to arrive as that particular year was coming to a close. Central City starts to be decorated with holiday-themed decorations and preparing for the big firework display that would happen the evening after. Everyone seems excited for the events that would ensue.
During the night before the big day, the temperature was colder than usual and all orphans were seemingly inside the orphanage where it was warm and cozy; all except for one... _____________________________________________________________________________________
Maxwell still resided inside the large mansion's playground, shooting a basketball into the hoop. For some reason, he did not feel cold that night. Even though he never stopped being carefree and jolly, making friends had a huge impact on Maxwell; this warm feelings that harbored him protected him from the cold.
After some more throws, Maxwell yawned and decided to it was time to go to his bedroom and sleep. When walking towards the large orphanage's front door under the numerous visible constellations of stars above, however, he noticed a black silhouette on the orphanage's rooftops that sat under the large full moon. Curious to see who it was, the white canid took a mighty jump towards the roof and gracefully landed on it.
Shivering because of the cold, ignoring Maxwell's landing beside her as if she grew used of his supernatural stunts, the girl that wore a blue ribbon that stuck out upwards remained silent. Eight-year-old Lazuli, whose tomboyish attitude and moxie inspired those around her, had aloof eyes that day.
The eight-year-old white canid, recognizing Lazuli because of her ribbon, began wondering the reason she was out there in the cold when everyone else was inside. When Maxwell's blue eyes meet her lapis lazuli-colored ones, he flinches; he never expected such vulnerability from his friend before. Without knowing what to say, he simply sat beside her and gazed at the full moon.
A silence ensued as the two children simply sat there, looking at the city that was visible from their orphanage, which was illuminated with bright lights, under the full moon. Maxwell never expected it to look so beautiful; it was as if paradise was so near, yet at the same time, unreachable.
Lazuli begins by claiming to Maxwell how unfair it is for good-hearted to be oppressed and trapped... The Genesis is not the only thing that keeps the world one step behind happiness. She continues by standing up, and with a determined look in her eyes, the green canid exclaims her dream to make the world a better place no matter what by instigating freedom to those around her. She expects Maxwell to laugh...
...However, Maxwell genuinely believes Lazuli looked more magnificent than she had ever been. Looking at her with new eyes, the little white fox says that her dream sounds super fun. Under the moonlight, the green canid makes him promise to help her change the world.
"Will you... help me change the world?"
"You can bet on it."
As the children smile with equally-determined eyes, the episode makes another transition.
Tomorrow is another day. _____________________________________________________________________________________
The episode makes a transition to the next day, just before evening. The orange sky, cloudless and perfect for the shooting of the commemorative fireworks dedicated to the announcement of the return of the elite agents from the Guardian Units of Nations after a successful campaign, was just turning black.
Within the underground base of the Dreamcasters, Lapis tells Maxwell and Colin that he is going to get everything set up in order for them to finally put their plan into action. The large room is left with the white small fox and the awkward-looking tall teenage chemist in a comical silence.
After some time, Maxwell breaks the ice and begins attempting to talk to Colin. Since the latter's social skills are unpolished, the little child does much of the talking. They mostly ramble about how the orphanage will benefit from it. In the eyes of children such as Maxwell, Lazuli, and Lapis, the reputation of the Genesis gone, the factions would shatter and peace would prevail. Injustice would collapse!
...However, Colin, the one who thought of the plan all by himself, thinks otherwise. Maxwell stops and asks him what is he talking about, and the wolf fixes his glasses and mentions that peace would only become if they were able to permanently remove both the Genesis and the Saturnites out of the picture!
Maxwell confronts him, telling Colin that the fire is only meant to scare the Genesis away, but the chemist quickly points out how things do not actually work that way:
"Fire is among the fairest and coldest of elements... It doesn't matter who is in the wrong or in the right, who created it or is it intended to affect since everyone shall become ash in its eyes. When ignited, everything burns indiscriminately. It shows... no empathy whatsoever."
As soon as Maxwell becomes a little horrified at the look of Colin's eyes, Lazuli comes out from an entrance tube and exclaims that everything is ready for the plan to start!
The episode concludes itself after a pondering Maxwell is dragged by his leader through a tube, and the grinning, gawky wolf reaches to the ground to pick up a small white hair originating from the little child. Seemingly intrigued, he places it in his lab coat's pocket and silently fixes his glasses...
Episode Forty-Three: The Moonlight Pledge VII
The episode commences with a flashback.
The flashback features three Mobians, both male and female, inside their humble house within Central City. With beautiful crystal-blue eyes that are masked by her big glasses and boasting long silky hair, the woman holds her white newborn child on her arms and secretly spies on the male canid from a corner. She witnesses her husband talk with strange, human men in military outfits in front of their front door.
After the strangers leave, the husband has a stunned, serious expression on his face. The wife, a little scared since she never saw him like this, asks him what is it, and he merely responds by saying:
"The crew needs me."
The following day, the husband is seen packing his backpack while his wife works extensively on her table. Their baby was fast asleep. Around the room, numerous papers with complicated chemical formulas are scattered. The husband, softly sighing, walks in and assures his darling that his trip will not take long!
As the wife begins to break down, argue against his departure by telling him that their newborn child should be his top priority, the husband reminds her how it is not about him but the whole world; and she knows it. Calming down, the wife tells him that she is preparing "special" for him but would only give him after his trip.
"Come back soon... We'll be waiting for you."
"I promise I will."
Right before the flashback ends, the scene cuts to the woman's table. The formulas scattered all have the same prototype name: CALAMITY. The substance, still in progress, would be delivered using syringes... _____________________________________________________________________________________
The episode makes a transition to Lazuli and Maxwell, walking around the halls of Wingstrong Orphanage. The former boasts a huge grin as she holds the snaps on her hand; setting everything ablaze sounds like the perfect idea since she is certain it will destroy the Genesis reputation and no one would get hurt.
With self-reflecting eyes and mouth shut, Maxwell tries to make sense of what Colin told him. Since fire does not discriminate, it would hurt everyone involved. Then, why would Colin suggest such dangerous idea in the first place? Why would he lie to his friends about such things? Such thoughts race the child's mind.
As Lazuli makes stops suddenly and hands Maxwell the snaps, she orders him to do the deed. The green canid does this to test Maxwell's loyalty to their pledge. In the end, though, Maxwell flatly refuses.
This, in turn, triggers Lazuli's ultimate wrath. Maxwell tries to explain that Colin lied to them and the snaps, when they explode onto the flammable graffiti on the walls, everything will burn down and no one will be able to live to tell the tale, but the prideful leader of the Dreamcasters refuses to listen since she is not taking any chances to end the tyranny of the factions and let the innocent people be free.
She tries to take the snaps bag back from Maxwell's hand, but the speedy canid simply dodges and tells Lazuli there must be some sort of way to befriend the Genesis like he did with the Saturnites. He believes the biggest, ruthless faction are not completely evil and can still be talked through!
...At that moment, both Maxwell and Lazuli shriek as red static suddenly covers their bodies and both fall to their knees, completely immobile. Behind them, it was Fantasmo along with a huge number of large members from the Genesis faction. He laughs, telling the kids he finally caught them at the perfect time. ____________________________________________________________________________________
Maxwell tries to move, but his leg's muscles do not respond. Fantasmo explains that his red static he is able to generate is a superpower he received long ago; it completely paralyzes foes on their place. He goes up to Lazuli, and mocks her by pinching her furry cheek. After all their indirect clashes, he never once knew his main, mysterious enemy was such a cute little girl... He says he misses looking as nice as that.
Lazuli spits on his uncovered eye, calling him a ruthless tyrant. Fantasmo pauses for a moment and slaps her with the back of his hand, triggering Maxwell and making him grit his teeth in anger. He goes on to explain that his intentions are not to oppress, but to protect all of them from the harsh reality that is the "outside", for he has seen the horrors it brings before being transferred to the orphanage.
The apparently handsome pigeon takes off his mask and shocks both Maxwell and Lazuli, revealing the hidden half of his face. It was badly wounded, filled with terrible scars, and his right eye blind. He reveals his history and rise to power, blaming the world beyond the orphanage for everything that happened to him.
Fantasmo tells Lazuli that the creation of the factions was the only thing that brought order to the place and kept unwanted and useless anarchy from befalling upon them all. She quickly retorts that by telling him the Vogel Ceremony is not lawful at all, and is just there for him to satisfy his sadistic tendencies. The bird tells the little fox that she is not entirely wrong about that. It is to ensure no one has the guts to oppose him.
"You're wrong, Fantasmo. This is not peace, this is tyranny."
Fantasmo stops for a moment and then rolls his eyes. He does not expect for a little child like Maxwell that to understand a thing of what he says. Instead, he curiously grabs the snaps bag from Maxwell's hand, wondering what they were planning to do with the orphanage owner son's snap bag.
Lazuli slyly pleads Fantasmo not to throw it away since it is very special to her. It is only moments later Maxwell understands her true intentions, but it is too late: Fantasmo grins and smashes them against the wall, suddenly making it burst into a crimson fire that rapidly spreads around the area!
The episode concludes itself as chaos spreads across the orphanage as the fireworks outside start exploding in the dark skies. It is the night of revolution; Wingstrong Orphanage is on fire!
Episode Forty-Four: The Moonlight Pledge VIII
The episode commences few moments after the events of the previous one. With the crimson-colored flames consuming the old walls of the orphanage and quickly escalating into something incredibly dangerous, the Saturnites, staff, and the factionless alike scream in horror and run away from the fire. Maxwell struggles to move, Lazuli is in distraught, and Fantasmo in total disbelief!
The scenery is covered in flames. Some of the Genesis members become scared and run away, but most seem to remain in the hellish mansion with their leader, awaiting orders. Fantasmo holds his head, that having the old, obsolete orphanage on fire is perfection. Just like a phoenix, from the ashes, such treacherous place would be reborn under his unopposed command! It is not the revolution Lazuli intended!
With the bird snapping his fingers, the crowd of Genesis members walk towards Lazuli, paralyzed in her place, with malice in their minds and hearts. Fantasmo urges Maxwell, who his idealistic counterpart, to witness what happens when someone tries too hard to prove there is remaining light in the world.
Maxwell pleads for Fantasmo to let Lazuli free, but the latter just grins. Lazuli, scared, looks at her friend one last time and whispers that she is sorry. The bigger teenagers proceed to trash the little green canid around harshly, heavily pummeling her down laughing as she cried for help...
"N-No... Please! You can't!"
The ground begins to shake a little as Maxwell starts to experience feelings he never had...
"STOP! PLEASE! LEAVE MY FRIEND ALONE!!"
Maxwell begins to furiously tremble trying to force himself out of the red static, as he begins to develop an uncanny white aura of his own. Fantasmo's devilish grin fades as he notices something is off!
"I SAID... LEAVE. HER. ALOOOOOOOOOOOOOONE!!!!!"
And then it happened. Just like it did eight years ago! _____________________________________________________________________________________
Amidst the flames, Maxwell suddenly radiates a furious white aura and lightning sparks from his body. His beautiful blue-colored eyes became white, and his sweet, innocent-looking expression furious; something no one has ever seen before. Although he resembled the child in shape, Maxwell did not seem like himself!
Regardless, what makes everyone awestruck is that tears fall from his eyes. Maxwell was pushed to his limits and out of sheer frustration, woken up a hidden power dormant from within. Unable to understand what is happening to the little, once seemingly harmless child, feelings of surprise and fear strike the hearts of everyone present: even Lazuli is bewildered by such tremendously awesome amount of energy.
For all intents and purposes, such transformation is his Unleashed form.
Breaking from Fantasmo's red static as if it was a lie, Maxwell disappears from sight out of thin air, causing a sonic boom to randomly explode where he knelt down. In a literal blink of an eye, all of the Genesis members harming Lazuli are knocked unconscious and pushed away so hard they pass through the fiery windows of the orphanage to the outside. Good thing they are on the first floor!
The green vixen's eyes cannot keep up with Maxwell as he appears and disappears, creating devastating sonic booms that weaken the burning orphanage's structure every moment. She is so shocked and terrified at the same time, she does not know how to react and neither does Fantasmo.
Maxwell appears in front of Fantasmo and, in a blind fury, uses attacks him in blinding speeds, knocking him some feet away. He then takes a deep breath, and runs toward the bird, calling out his attack's name. The white, speedy canid strikes him in the chest so fast, the sound of the punch is only heard afterward. The eminent sonic boom destroys almost everything nearby, and Fantasmo is sent back harshly.
It was the Phantom Fist, a technique Maxwell only dreams of performing normally. _____________________________________________________________________________________
Fantasmo tries to recompose himself after being beaten down so harshly, slowly standing up while summoning red static on his hands. His mask was broken into pieces and so is few of his hollow bird bones, plus his cynic resolve is also a little shattered, ready to crack at any time.
After a brief argument with a fury-driven Maxwell about ideals, the white canid finally shuts him up, verbally breaking down Fantasmo as the latter begins to realize the fox just might be the embodiment of everything he always wanted to believe the world would offer him: an unwavering sense of hope.
As Unleashed Maxwell is about to attack him once more, a wounded Lazuli does the unthinkable. She jumps at her friend and holds him tight, pleading for him to stop and return back to the dunce he normally was.
"You went overboard... you dunce."
Her words, as if magical, reach the furious child as he begins to calm down and his white aura starts to fade. In few moments, Maxwell's Unleashed transformation ends and he becomes normal again, though still wailing loudly on her arms as everything around them burns and Fantasmo sitting down, defeated... _____________________________________________________________________________________
The episode makes another transition to few hours later.
With most of the orphanage damaged by the flames that consumed it, human members of the fire department are seen cooling the place down. Almost of the orphan children and teenagers could be seen in a large crowd outside. Lukewarmly, everyone seems to be fine (granted some beat-up Genesis members) and there were no casualties... but only two disappearances: Maxwell and Colin are nowhere to be found.
The big three leaders of the orphanage, Fantasmo whose name turned out to be Fei, Scalar, and Lazuli all make their speeches to the orphans outside and declare that all factions are to be abolished. With his ways changed, Fei does not expect for other people to forgive him so soon, so he must work hard!
Lazuli barely could believe orphans would happily live among themselves as a community until that one special person arrives and leads them to a better future with a family of their own; it seems as if she took a huge step closer to her dream... and she owes it all to Maxwell who, like usual, has parted ways by running away grandiosely. She hopes they would meet again, as she looks at the full moon above herself.
Episode Forty-Five: The Moonlight Pledge IX
The episode commences few moments after the previous one. With Wingstrong Orphanage and the factions destroyed, a new, less oppressive order shall be eventually established. Lazuli, Fei, and Scalar are going to make whatever possible to build the things they broke: peace. Tension between former enemies, despite not disappearing instantly, should gradually disappear. Everyone has a second chance!
During the whole revolutionary plan, fireworks fired in Central City's black skies. The Guardian Units of Nation's most elite agents would be returning in months due to their successful extraterrestrial campaign. Without problems on their own, they single-handedly exterminated an entire race of aliens that posed a threat to Mobius. Such commemorative event attracted numerous people worldwide.
Down in the famous city of Station Square, Dimitri Prinus the Echidna and Ramonna the Hedgehog both have lived with each other for a considerable amount of time since their fateful near-death meeting. Guilty of his free-loading, which the hedgehog secretly did not seem to mind, he has since helped in the city's flower shop with his geeky co-worker Jasmine to pay the rent and taxes for his friend on his own.
However, as Ramonna featured some interest in watching the fireworks, both decided to gather enough money using their own methods for a trip to Central City. If Dimitri was on his own, he could have probably levitated to the northeastern continent of Eurish in days, but it would be too late.
Through a lot of effort, both eventually gained enough money for the airplane tickets and, on the three-month anniversary of their first meeting, they departure from their nice house unaware of the fateful encounters they might stumble across... _____________________________________________________________________________________
In the cold night in Central City, after the beautiful commemorative fireworks, Dimitri and Ramonna stroll around together, commenting about their day and where to eat. Since the Eurish weather is considerably colder than in their own city, they both wear more clothing than they normally use.
The echidna in his own right was initially astonished by the fireworks. He did not have a clue on what they were, and their explosive demeanor resembled his energy techniques. They, unfortunately, brought some back memories that made his stomach whirl. However, with an aloof Ramonna holding him tightly and almost breaking his arm, he came to appreciate them almost as much as she did.
While wandering around aimlessly, far from Wingstrong Orphanage, Dimitri and Ramonna find a fox child leaning down on a wall. He wears rags, dirtied by fire, and seemingly had a very potent fever that makes him pant almost uncontrollably as he grasped for air. It is quite a sight for the duo, who come to examine closer. Ramonna's motherly nature speaks loudly as she wants to help the cute child.
The child suddenly feels a bi-colored scarf wrap around his neck given by the echidna, warming him up.
Dimitri kneels down to him and notices something uncanny. He briefly looks at the weak canid in the eye and then hands him a bitter red-herb paste he carried on his coat pocket. The boy is instantly healed by ingesting the bad-tasting medicine and sniffles a little bit in happiness.
Dimitri has a brief conversation with Ramonna as they both agree on something. The echidna extends a friendly hand towards the little white one, and tells him:
"Come on, it's cold outside. Let's go home."
Happily, the white canid fox obliged. _____________________________________________________________________________________
The episode makes a transition.
After traveling back to Station Square, it does not take long for Maxwell to accommodate himself with such a collectivist community and to the strangers he first met. Despite the climate being significantly warmer than in Eurish, Maxwell seemed to take an affection to his given bi-colored scarf and uses it every day.
Ramonna is the first one that got close to Maxwell; her energetic, lively charisma resonated with the fox! Her homemade meals might have also been a factor to win him over pretty easily. She eventually tests his prowess in battle since she tauntingly claims she cannot house weaklings. With Dimitri watching over their fight, both the echidna and the hedgehog are surprised to witness the abilities of the eight-year-old child.
Being severely inexperienced, speedy Maxwell lost harshly. Ramonna's durability tanked all of the child's speedy, but brutal blows, and she managed to hit him once, defeating him. Even so, pleasantly satisfied, Ramonna acknowledges Maxwell's strength and tells him he is not too shabby. The white canid did not transform, and never told them about his transformation because he does not even know what it is! ____________________________________________________________________________________
Sometime later, Ramonna mentions Dimitri is the one that is in charge of introducing the little kid to the city as a way to "pass on the torch". This piqued Maxwell's interest; he never freely roamed in the outside world with someone like the cool, more serious echidna. He wanted to know more about him!
Dimitri and Maxwell stroll around town under sunny skies, with the former explaining things in the same manner like Ramonna did but with much more patience. Much like the echidna once was, the canid is amazed by his surroundings; the life outside of the orphanage seems much more vivid and fun!
Soon, Dimitri creates a special emotional bond with Maxwell. Maxwell starts seeing him as a cool older brother. Their contrast in terms of openness sparks a strange chemistry between them that makes them feel like they have been friends for a long time. Their company is mutually pleasant!
Walking over to House of Lilies, the local flower shop, to show him around, Jasmine the Bat is seen listening to music. Dimitri tries to introduce the kid to her, but he fails to grab her attention from her sound. On the other hand, Maxwell is interested in know what she wore on her head...
Eventually, when Maxwell pokes her at speeds so great it tickles her, she lets out embarrassing noises after finally recomposing herself and wondering, panting, who in the bloody heck did that. Frustrated, she mistakenly takes it all out on Dimitri and slaps him on the face, calling him a pervert!
Her slap does not really damage Dimitri, but he tries to explain himself anyway. Maxwell then energetically introduces himself to Jasmine and asks what was she wearing on her head.
"What? You don't even know what headphones are?"
"Headphones? Heads with phones?"
"Siiiigh... I suppose he must take after you, Dimitri."
"Very funny, Jasmine." _____________________________________________________________________________________
Jasmine found Maxwell cute, but somewhat too energetic for her tastes. Regardless, she seemed to like him enough to not put her headphone music on maximum volume while he talked. On the other hand, the little canid already considered the weird bat to be his new friend.
The episode concludes itself after that. _____________________________________________________________________________________
Episode Forty-Six: The Moonlight Pledge X
The episodes commences in a regular morning in Station Square. The trio, now all friends, seem to be doing their regular things. This episode mostly focuses on Ramonna the Hedgehog.
Ramonna jogs around the city's beautiful beach, Emerald Coast, relentlessly and more pumped than ever. She was rather proud of her foot-speed before, but with Maxwell surpassing her like any other person, she became determined to improve her already above average speed!
On the other hand, she remembers Dimitri still had troubles sleeping soundly the day she got her amulet. He had already told her about his constant nightmares that made him barely rest each night. Apparently, his recent past still haunts him until this very day, hence why the echidna might sound tense from time to time. _____________________________________________________________________________________
Back then, Ramonna had decided she needed to pay back the echidna somehow. Thoughts raced her mind as she tried her best in generating ideas, but it barely gave any results. Some of her ideas were cold, some of them were too mellow... and some made her heart pound harshly just at the idea! Teenagers...
In the living room, when Dimitri had finally started sleeping in the middle of the night, Ramonna noticed him mildly sleep-talking from his intense nightmares; his facial expressions expressed genuine horror. Incredibly hesitant and with her heart about to burst, Ramonna, wrapped in a blanket, woke him up and told him that, just this once, he should sleep on her bed beside her so she would have no nightmares.
Half-awake, Dimitri found the logic behind her words and accepted. Sharing a single bed that was not so wide, each person was turned to their opposite sides. Ramonna seemed very stiff, with her heart racing. Someone as independent as her never felt anything like this; not even in her most glorious battles. After some unintentionally provocative moments, they chat a little before finally sleeping at the same time.
Dimitri had slept soundly for the first time in years...
The episode soon concludes itself after that.
Episode Forty-Seven: The Moonlight Pledge XI
The episode commences some weeks after the previous episode. In a chilly, orange-skied evening, Dimitri and Ramonna tell Maxwell to explore Station Square to get used to his surroundings and the child obliges. After spending precious time with both of them and getting used to the city, he instead feels much happier because he believes the number of nice people he would find everywhere would only increase!
The scarfed, speedy canid tries his hardest not to be noticed by the common crowd while running. Ramonna told him people with superpowers like herself and Dimitri tend not to publicly reveal their abilities so they would not cause turmoil. She even jokes about Guardian Units of Nations capturing speedsters to make them run on wheels in their spooky laboratories, and Maxwell is very scared of such idea!
Running so fast, Maxwell appears as a white blur to everyone else, making him unrecognizable. He also tries to mask his identity by covering his mouth with his scarf. He later notices a large crowd of people about his age with strange high-tech-looking "surfboards" on their hands and he goes there to check it out.
Apparently, a fancy-looking male Mobian Persian cat with very large bodyguards behind him is telling the children that the Speed Highway, the most radical Extreme Gear race track in the city, is not meant for anyone, for he possesses the high-tech and expensive Turbo Star model which he claims surpasses any Mobian in terms of speed! Everyone starts getting angry and upset. They could not do anything about it!
Maxwell steps in and, without knowing too much about Extreme Gears, says that he overheard someone saying they could surpass every Mobian in terms of speed. The children try to explain to him that the rich cat took the fun meant for everybody and that he needs someone to beat him. Maxwell gains an idea.
The white canid challenges the bitter Persian cat to a one-on-one race. If Maxwell wins, Speed Highway would return to the public. In the case he loses, the other children lose their privilege to race there forever! _____________________________________________________________________________________
The episode makes a transition.
Both racers are set in their positions. They would have to reach the other side of Speed Highway in order to win the competition. Hovering on the air, the Persian cat scoffs and wonders how would a little child win, let alone be faster on foot. Maxwell, on the other hand, is too busy listening to the crowd's cheers.
The race begins as the referee finished the countdown and both contestants bolt off.
With the Persian cat swiftly surpassing Maxwell initially with his superior acceleration, he begins to laugh scornfully. The little child seems to have troubles getting to his top speed instantly like the Turbo Star allowed his opponent! He must gain some sort of momentum in order to become faster more quickly.
Maxwell takes advantage of grinding through rails in order to reach greater speeds and creates short-cuts. The whole audience gets excited at the sight of such impressive skill; even the Persian cat now becomes worried over his victory as the child closes on him at astounding velocity.
While running in the last straight road of the highway-themed track and the Persian cat on the lead, the white canid takes a deep breath and runs like he has never run before. With his gleaming blue eyes fixated on the finish-line, Maxwell dashes so fast faint afterimages appear behind him, creating illusions. The children from the audience are the edge of their seats and cheer merrily for the fox! _____________________________________________________________________________________
The episode makes another transition to few minutes later.
Needless to say, Maxwell beautifully won the suspenseful race. The crowd of children watching cheered for the white canid as the rich Persian cat, bitter about his loss, admits defeat and mentions that he will make the racing track public once more. However, next time, he would make sure to win over Speed Highway!
The surrounding children swarm around Maxwell. The eldest of them, a few years older than him, steps forward and speaks for everyone. While he could not give away his rather expensive Extreme Gear, the kid instead hands Maxwell a blue street skateboard as a thank-you from all of them. Maxwell smiles happily!
The children have so much fun playing together for the whole day, the sun eventually begins to descend.
After a long day, Maxwell later returns home with his skateboard. Currently, not so good with it and fell down a bunch of times, but he did not let that get to him. Maxwell decides to practice enough with it so he could, one day, own a high-tech, expensive Extreme Gear for himself so he could soar around quickly.
His skateboard came as a surprise to both Ramonna and Dimitri. After telling the whole story while expecting to be scolded since the hedgehog told him not to go around and reveal his supernatural speed everywhere, Maxwell somewhat predicted the female hedgehog's reaction. With a strong tone, she did briefly scold him, but for the reason that she was worried the child would get hurt instead.
As Ramonna scolds Maxwell, a serious-looking Dimitri analyzes everything on his head. He then clears his throat and faintly pushes his voluptuous friend using his telekinesis, interrupting her. He sighs and pats Maxwell on his head. He says that what his friend wants to convey is that she is actually totally proud of him.
"There's no shame in standing up for what is right. Your heart is in the right place."
"...Heh, your heart is mighty fine, alright. You did well for a little rascal. Keep it up!"
Maxwell blushes a little, grins widely, and chuckles. Emotions of warmth embrace his body as he feels ever thankful for meeting both of them. Is that what it feels like to have a family? Little did the orphan know...
"...Yes! No problem at all!"
The starry sky is particularly beautiful that night; it seems blessed by its silver-colored full-moon. The episode concludes itself as the trio merrily eat together, laughing happily... like the family they seem to be.
Episode Forty-Eight: The Moonlight Pledge (FINALE)
The following episode serves as a recap for most of the important scenes found in the installment so far, including some additional scenes in the ending of each segment.
With a large amount of lore to digest within a single series so far, it is natural most viewers would like to relax before taking on the epilogue of the installment. Aside from the bonus scenes featuring Rikai, Dimitri, Ramonna, and Maxwell, the story does not progress further. It is meant to be a breather to the audience that has kept up with the installment to this point.
If you managed to read through all of this so far, congratulations! _____________________________________________________________________________________
END OF THE MOONLIGHT PLEDGE
TO BE CONTINUED IN THE EPILOGUE!