Friday, July 7, 2000, 10:07 AM
Lana, Heather, Stacey, Kristen, and Samus were in the recording studio at Dazzle Music, practicing. "What's wrong, Samus?" Lana asked. "You sounded off-key." "Yeah, you look bummed, Sammer." Stacey added. Samus sighed. "I dunno. I guess I'm bored with just playing music all the time. I miss bounty-hunting. I miss the danger, the thrills, the excitement, - " "The loneliness?" Heather asked. "Well,...I admit...I did get lonely." Samus said. "After I caught my prisoners, there was usually nothing to do. Just a long, boring trip back. Sometimes they'd give me trouble, and that provided some entertainment. However, the excitement of capturing my prey more than made up for any loneliness I felt. I'd like to get back to it - maybe with a partner or a team." "Well, count me out." Kristen said. "Me, too." Heather said. "Me too plus one." Stacey said. "Yeah, bounty-hunting isn't our thing, Samus." Lana said. "We're sticking with our music. But if you want to go,...we understand."
Samus closed the last suitcase in her room. She stood up and faced the others. "We'll miss you, Samus." Stacey said, starting to cry. Lana was crying, also. "Your room will be here when you get back." Samus hugged Lana, Stacey, Kristen, and Heather separately. "I'll miss all of you." "Promise to call us and tell us about your adventures." Kristen said. "And keep us in your thoughts." Heather added. Samus smiled warmly at them. "I promise."
Samus got into her ship, the Starship Hunter VII, and flew off. Her friends stood and watched until they could no longer see the ship.
The Starship Hunter VII approached the Locker. Samus turned on her radio. "Locker, this is Starship Hunter VII requesting permission to dock." "Starship Hunter VII?!" came the reply. "Samus, is that you?!" Samus smiled. "Yep." "Permission granted! Welcome back, Samus!" "Thanks." Samus turned off the radio and docked the ship.
Samus arrived inside the Locker. The place was crowded. Everyone was surprised to see Samus. Samus got on the gravulator.
Samus took a warp key out of her front left jeans pocket and unlocked the door. She stepped into her storage area. Samus picked up some items to start off with - some light weapons and some first-aid supplies.
Samus stored the items in the Hunter VII and sat down in the pilot's seat. She turned on her computer and began doing research on potential team members. "Okay, this looks like a good choice." Samus said. She turned on her radio. "Locker, this is Starship Hunter VII requesting permission to depart." "Permission granted." Samus turned off the radio, started the engine, and flew off to her first destination.
Samus parked her ship and entered the Carrington Institute. After getting directions, Samus arrived at the Combat Simulator. She watched through the window. There was a young woman inside, shooting simulations of enemies. Samus was quite impressed. Soon, the woman had enough and exited the Combat Simulator. She had short brown hair and blue eyes. "Joanna Dark?" Samus asked, even though she already knew it was her. "Yeah." Joanna replied. "Who are you?" Samus offered her right hand. "Samus Aran." Joanna shook her hand. "Joanna Dark. Oh, you already knew that." The two of them laughed. They walked together. "So, what do you do, Samus?" Joanna asked. "Well, Joanna, - " "You can call me Jo." "'Kay, Jo." Samus agreed. "You can call me Sam." "'Kay, Sam." Jo agreed. "I'm a bounty hunter," Samus answered, "or rather I was. I'm getting back into it. But it's kind of a lonely job, and I'd rather have a partner or a team to work with. I want you." "Me?" Joanna asked in surprise. "But I'm not a bounty hunter. I'm a Carrington Institute operative. I have no experience bounty-hunting." "But you're certainly qualified." Samus told her. "You're young - 23 years old. Your training is complete. You're highly trained but inexperienced. Superb reactions. Proficient with a variety of weapons. Very competent all-around agent. Highest recorded training scores resulted in the creation of a new class of training grade. You're the embodiment of the Carrington Institute's ideal agent, hence the call sign 'Perfect Dark'. You're very skilled in stealth, weaponry, and technology, making her the best agent the Carrington Institute has ever had. Little over a month ago, you had your first real assignment, saving the world, which you accomplished. Did I leave anything out?" "My preferred weapon is the Falcon 2." Joanna supplied. "I'm not familiar with it." Samus said. "But I guess I'll see it soon, assuming you'll accept my offer." There was silence between them for a few moments as Joanna considered the offer. "You'd make a lot more money, Jo." Samus told her. "You don't even have to resign. Just take a leave of absence." Finally, Joanna smiled. "Okay, Sam, I accept your offer." Samus smiled. "Great." They shook hands.
"Mmmm, this is a nice gun." Samus said, holding the Falcon 2 in her hands. Samus and Joanna were sitting in chairs on the main bridge of the Starship Hunter VII. They were flying through space. "So, what's our next destination?" Jo asked. "The planet Romero." Samus replied. "There are two people there that I know. They're good. I wanna see if they're interested."
Samus parked her ship, and she and Joanna entered the base. After some searching, Samus found who she was looking for. "Fly! Arlene!" Flynn and Arlene saw Samus and walked over to her. "Hey, Samus." Fly greeted with a smile, shaking her hand. "How's it going?" Arlene asked, shaking Samus' hand. "Well, I'm getting back into bounty-hunting, and I want to form a team, so I won't get lonely." Samus explained. "Oh, this is Jo Dark." "Joanna Dark." Fly said, shaking her hand. "I've heard about you. New young hotshot who saved her planet from aliens." "That's me." "Flynn Peter Taggart. Folks call me Fly, except when they're pissed." Joanna laughed. Arlene shook her hand. "Arlene Sanders." "So, are you two interested in joining my team?" Samus asked. Arlene smiled. "Bounty-hunting? You bet!" "Not me." Fly answered. "Sorry, but somebody's gotta stay behind and fight the monsters when they attack Romero." "Right." Samus agreed. "And since you're the only surviving veteran of the Doom campaigns, I guess you're the best choice." "I hate to break up a good team, but I wanna do this." Arlene said. "Good luck, Fly." "You, too, Arlene." Fly replied. They hugged. Samus offered Arlene her right hand. "Welcome to the team, Arlene." Arlene shook her hand. "Thanks, Samus." "Resign, take whatever weapons you want, and we'll be on our way." Samus told her.
Samus, Joanna, and Arlene were on the Starship Hunter VII, flying through space. "So, what's our next destination?" Arlene asked. "Resident Evil." Samus replied. She shuddered. "Ooh, good thing I got you first. We'll need someone who's an expert at fighting zombies." "Oy." Joanna commented. "There are two people there I wanna get." Samus said. "I hope they'll come, given the current circumstances."
Samus parked the Starship Hunter VII on the ground. "Where are we?" Joanna asked. "Florida." Samus replied. "The locals call this planet 'Earth'. We call it 'Resident Evil'. The computer has located the DNA of the people I'm looking for." The three of them stood up. Arlene loaded her shotgun. Samus put on her armor. Joanna loaded her Falcon 2. Samus opened the door, and the three of them walked outside. "Now be careful." Samus cautioned. "We don't know what's been happening on this world since the events of Resident Evil: Code Veronica. There could be zombies anywhere. And remember: these people don't know about other video worlds. We'll have to tell them gently." They walked deep into a forest. Soon, they came across three people fighting zombies. Samus, Joanna, and Arlene immediately ran forward and helped the humans out. There were ten zombies left. After thirty seconds, there were none. The people they had helped were two women and one man. The man approached them cautiously. "Thank you." he said. Samus took off her helmet. "Welcome." She offered him her right hand. "Samus Aran." The man shook it. "Chris Redfield. This is my sister, Claire Redfield, and our friend, Jill Valentine." he introduced, indicating the two women. Samus nodded, smiling. "I know. I've been looking for you two." Jill raised her shotgun and pointed it at Samus. "Why? Are you with Umbrella?" "If I was, why would I help you kill those zombies?" Samus asked. Jill slowly lowered her shotgun. "Who are you?" Claire asked. "I'm a bounty hunter." Samus replied. Jill quickly raised her shotgun again. "Calm down!" Samus told her. "Umbrella's got a modest price on my head." Jill said. "Explain yourself, bitch! This is a Remington shotgun. I can blow your fuckin' head off!" "Umbrella didn't send me!" Samus yelled. "Lower your weapon! I'm not going to hurt you! Trust me, if I wanted to, I would've killed you already!" Jill thought for a moment, then lowered her shotgun again. "Okay." Samus said. "I was away from bounty-hunting for a number of years. Now I'm getting back into it. So I won't be bored, I've decided to create a team. Now look,...there are many different worlds in the universe. A lot of them support life. I come from another world." "You must think we're stupid." Claire said. "I'm not lying to you." Samus said. "I've been to two other worlds already. I've gotten two people to join the team already. These are Joanna Dark and Arlene Sanders." "Hi." Joanna and Arlene greeted. "Look, my starship is right outside the forest." Samus told the natives. Samus led them out of the forest. Chris, Claire, and Jill stared at the ship in awe. "The Starship Hunter VII." Samus told them. "Okay," Jill accepted, "so you're telling the truth. Wow. Well, what do you want from us?" "I want only the best on this team." Samus said. "You're two of the people I've chosen." "Well,...we're very honored," Jill said, "but I'm afraid we can't accept your offer. We're committed to the destruction of the Umbrella Corporation." "Yeah, I can't leave my brother to fight them alone." Claire added. "Go on, you two." Chris told them. "Huh?" Claire and Jill asked in surprise. "I'll track them down. I'll send out a distress call when I need help." Chris said. "Go. Have fun." "Okay,...we'll join." Claire told Samus. "Yeah." Jill agreed. Samus shook Claire's hand, then Jill's. "Welcome to the team, girls." Claire hugged Chris. Samus allowed Jill and Claire to walk into the ship first. Then Samus, Joanna, and Arlene walked in. Samus closed the door. Everyone sat down. Samus started the engine and took off.
A few minutes later, Jill and Claire had pretty much accepted everything they had seen. "So, uh, where are we going?" Jill asked. "Another planet." Samus replied. "There's one more person I wanna get." "Cool." Claire said. "What kinda gun ya got, Claire?" Samus asked. "A Colt S.A.A. revolver." Claire replied. "Cool." Samus said.
Samus parked the ship, and she, Joanna, Arlene, Jill, and Claire exited it. "Wow, a real English manor!" Jill said. "On another world!" Claire added. Just then, a woman with long brown hair came running at them, firing magnums. "Whoa! Hey! Stop!" Samus yelled, holding up her hands. The woman's eyes were brown, and they were filled with suspicion. "Who are you?" she asked in a British accent. "My name is Samus Aran." She had taken off her armor during the trip, so she didn't appear threatening now. "What the fuck is that?" she asked, indicating Samus' ship with a gun. "That's my ship, the Starship Hunter VII." Samus replied. "Put the guns down. We're not going to hurt you, Lara." Lara lowered her guns. She didn't have any holsters to put them in, since she was currently wearing her training outfit. "Would you like to come in for some tea?" was all that Lara could manage to ask. Samus smiled. "We'd love to." Lara, Samus, Joanna, Arlene, Jill, and Claire walked past the gate, through the courtyard (complete with a water fountain), and up to the front doors. "Nice bike." Claire commented when she saw Lara's motorcycle. "Thanks."
Lara poured iced tea for all six of them, then sat down with them at the kitchen table. "These are Joanna Dark, Arlene Sanders, Jill Valentine, and Claire Redfield." Samus introduced. "We're from other planets. We came looking for you, Lara." "Okay," Lara said, "please explain." "I'm a bounty hunter." Samus explained yet again. "I haven't been at it for some years, but now I'm going back to it. It's kind of a boring job, so I've decided to form a team, and I want you to join." "Sorry, I don't bounty-hunt. I tomb-raid." Lara said. "Hence you're called the Tomb Raider." Samus said. "I know. We could do that, too." "I work alone." Lara said. Samus thought for a moment. "What if we could prove our worth to you during an expedition? Would you join us then?" Lara considered that. "Maybe." "Then pick something." Samus said. Lara drank the rest of her iced tea. "All right. Let's go to the library."
Lara selected an encyclopedia. She opened it and searched. "Here we are." Lara said. "In 1513, Don Juan Ponce de Leon discovered and named Florida. He was searching for the mythical Fountain of Youth, the waters of which would supposedly make a person young again." Lara closed the encyclopedia and put it back. "If you fellas will help me find it, I'll join your team." Samus nodded. "Okay." "I'll change, and then we'll head for Florida on my private jet." Lara said. "Um, I can get us there a lot faster." Samus said.
Samus, Joanna, Arlene, Jill, Claire, and Lara entered the Starship Hunter VII. Samus closed the door. Everyone sat down. Lara sat to Samus' right. Samus started the engine and took off. "How fast does this thing go?" Lara asked. "Its top speed is warp 9.97." Samus replied. "That's approximately one-billion miles per second." Lara laughed in shock. "Um, can I fly it?" "Maybe later."
Samus landed the ship on the ground. It was nighttime. "Load your weapons." Samus told them. Lara, Joanna, Arlene, Jill, and Claire loaded their weapons. Samus opened the door. Everyone exited the ship. They entered a dense forest. It was a swampy area. "This place feels familiar...in a weird way." Claire said. "Well, it is Florida...on another world, anyway." Jill said. "Why are we here, Samus?" Lara asked. "Ponce de Leon was looking for the Fountain of Youth in St. Augustine." "That's an anachronism." Samus replied. "Besides, I've already scanned the city. The fountain's not there." She was holding a portable scanner in her hand. "However, this scanner shows a structure up ahead." Soon, they heard a rustling sound. "Shhh." Lara whispered as she raised her gun. She walked over to a tree. "Come out here!" "Lara?" a male voice with a British accent replied. A man stepped forward. He had short blond hair. "Carver?" Lara asked in surprise. "What are you doing here?" "I'm searching for something." Carver replied. "The Fountain of Youth?" Lara guessed. "Yeah. You, too?" "Yeah." Lara replied. "Aren't you going to introduce us?" Arlene asked. "Oh, uh, everyone, this is Chase Carver." Lara introduced. "He's a rival of mine." Chase put her right arm around Lara and his hand on her shoulder. "Come, now, is that any way to talk about your boyfriend?" "Former boyfriend." Lara corrected. "Biggest mistake of my life. And if you don't remove that hand right now, I will place it where neither the best archaeologist, nor the best proctologist, will be able to find it." Chase quickly removed his hand from Lara. "Jolly good." Lara said. "Now, if you want to come along, you may, but keep your hands to yourself." The seven of them started walking together. "Who are these girls, Lara?" Chase asked, staring at them in lust. "We're friends of her." Joanna replied. "I thought you worked alone." Chase said. "I did," Lara replied, "but maybe not for much longer if Samus' readings are right." Samus pointed forward. "Just past those trees." Suddenly, there heard a sound coming from past the trees. Everyone stopped moving. "What was that?" Joanna asked. "I dunno." Samus whispered. "But everybody be silent." They stood silently and listened to the sound. "Probably an animal of some kind." Chase said loudly. Lara clamped her left hand over Chase's mouth. "For fuck's sake, shut the fuck up!" Lara said quietly. Chase stuck out his tongue and licked Lara's palm. Lara pulled her hand away in disgust and wiped it against a tree. "I'll go see what it is." Lara said. She started to walk forward. Chase walked in front of her. "No need for a pretty girl like you to risk yourself when there's a man around. I'll check it out." He walked forward. "Patronizing, sexist fuckwit." Lara muttered. Suddenly, an alligator attacked Chase. He screamed and jump backwards. "A bloody gator!" Lara yelled. "Chase, get down!" Chase ducked. Lara fired her magnums and emptied a lot of bullets into the gator. The animal fell. Chase stood up. "Oh, shit!" "You're welcome." Lara replied, walking over. She kicked the alligator with her right boot. "Remind me to never save your sorry ass again." Everyone stood in silence for a moment. "Now," Lara said, pointing at the trees, "let's have a look, shall we?" The seven of them stepped past the trees, Lara in the lead. There was an old stone structure in front of them. It was round. There was a spout made out of stone in the middle. Samus took some readings with her scanner. "This structure is approximately 2,000 years old." "Who could've built it?" Claire asked. "I don't know." Lara bent over and peered into the bowl. "It's empty." Arlene sighed. "So much for the Fountain of Youth." "I should've expected it." Lara said. "I guess no one can be young again." Claire sat down on the rim of the bowl. There was an audible sound. Claire stood up in surprise. Water spouted from the fountain and started filling up the bowl. Joanna gasped. "Claire, you did it!" "Way to go, Claire!" Jill praised. Claire smiled. "Gee, I just wanted to sit down for a while, but thanks." "And that's not all she did." Lara pointed. "Look!" Some stones surrounding the fountain moved, and they saw something shining in the moonlight. "The legendary gold and silver deposits." Lara said, a grin on her face. "We'll split it six ways, Samus." Chase cleared his throat. Lara grumbled. "All right, all right, seven ways." "Thanks, Lara." Chase said. "Fuck you." Lara said. "You didn't help us." "Lara, the fountain's filled up." Samus said. "Let's try it out!" Chase said. "Okay!" Lara pushed Chase into the fountain. "Whoa!" Chase yelled. Samus took off her armor. Lara, Samus, Arlene, and Jill got into the fountain and started splashing Chase and each other. The five of them drank a lot of water. "Jo, Claire, come on in, the water's fine!" Samus called. "Nah, we're both in our early twenties." Jo said. "We don't need it right now." "But bottle it for us. We'll drink it in about five years." Claire told Samus. Samus smiled. "Good idea. I've got some bottles on my ship. I'll go get them." She, Lara, Arlene, Jill, and Chase emerged from the fountain, completely soaked. Jo and Claire gasped. "What is it?" Lara asked. "You're young!" Jo said. Samus, Lara, Arlene, Jill, and Chase looked at each other, then they looked at their reflections in the fountain. "Fantastic!" Lara said.