We’re now in the last five chapters and everything is starting to fall into place. I was ill last week, hence no chapter last Sunday. Keep at it and everything will be explained, whether or not any of the remaining characters survive it. Snake could just be about to set in motion what I’m calling “The End of Everything.” From this point onwards, it’s all or nothing. Do you remember?
Previously: Snake has woken up on Shadow Moses island in the past. He tries to change everything, but most events course-correct. Now, he’s being driven out of the complex on a Jeep by Ocelot and it appears many others realise they’ve travelled back in time. Mantis told Snake that Ocelot has all the answers, but can Snake get it out of him before Ocelot activates his plan?
Disclaimer: This story contains violent scenes that some younger readers may find disturbing. Many chapters contain detailed scenes of gore and peril. If you haven’t played the Metal Gear series, there will be spoilers in this story.
The End of Everything
Ocelot drove the Jeep towards the light. Orange streaks burned into Snake’s eyes. Sound was muffled in his ears, the blood that had once trickled from his codec was beginning to congeal. He could make out the vague roar of the engine, echoing down the escape route.
Snake had failed. He thought his reason here was all about saving Meryl and Otacon… but Otacon wasn’t here, and Meryl… Meryl. He had seen her die in the flashes around Mantis. Both of Snake’s legs were crippled, crimson pouring from the gunshot wounds with chunks of skin sliding to the rumbling metal below. He couldn’t do anything to save them, his friends. He couldn’t do anything. It was too late for Meryl, and it seemed too late for Otacon.
Morse code came through Snake’s codec, popping his ears. It was one of the many codes he had learnt to communicate with, but this seemed jumbled. If the morse code were true, then it was just a random stream of ones and zeros. No human could make sense of this.
“What are you going to do?” Snake called towards Ocelot.
“What they said I couldn’t.” The one-armed man replied.
“And what’s that?”
“That I can’t change fate”. Ocelot’s words were cold, repeating back words from those whom he had despised.
“You want me dead?”
“You still haven’t figured it out yet have you, Snake?”
Agony was exploring Snake’s body, streaming through his arms and legs, running up to his brain and throbbing his pain receptors. He would have shot Ocelot simply for his authoritative manner and undermining others. Snake boiled with anger.
“I don’t want you dead because you’re the only one keeping this thing going… and you’re probably wondering why the Fox unit didn’t die off sooner.”
Snake hadn’t actually put much thought into this. The ArmsTech President hadn’t died the moment they met. Neither had Mantis fallen. Vulcan didn’t die by Snake’s hands and neither had Liquid. They all could have lived. It suddenly struck David.
“FoxDie”. He said.
“Naomi never injected it into you.” Ocelot continued.
“Then that means… Liquid would have survived…”
“No thank you. I don’t want the memory of him haunting my mind.”
“What plan of yours could you need me for?! I wouldn’t help you, ever.”
“To be honest, Snake, I don’t give a damn. As long as you’re alive, then we’re fine. Of all the people who have, I would have thought you’d work it out the fastest.”
Someone walked over Snake’s grave. He shuddered as his mind connected his wrinkles to his older self. If there was no FoxDie in his bloodstream, then what was causing the accelerated aging? And if he wasn’t given an expiry date, then what could they all possibly want him to live for?
Every single person had wanted him to survive, yet Ocelot already had all the information he needed for Snake to not need to reach Metal Gear Rex.
“Not everyone remembers yet. It takes time for some.” Ocelot confirmed.
Mantis had definitely known. He had attacked them before their original encounter point. Wolf hadn’t remembered. She was still repeating actions before. But she never shot Snake dead, she only shot his hand – but that would make sense as she never killed him the first time. Raven had never killed Snake. He even seemed to try and help him. Liquid, knowing Snake wasn’t coming to the roof to confront him in the Hind D made sure that Snake was attacked as the same time as before, even if it meant changing the position of the attack slightly.
It dawned on Snake what Psycho Mantis was saying. Wolf never needed to confront Snake. Neither did Mantis, Liquid, or any of the others. If they all aimed to keep him alive, then why did they need to confront him? Mantis’ words about recreating events was chilling Snake’s mind.
Something boomed in the distance. Behind the Jeep, in the shadows, something was coming towards them. Another boom, closer. Another, beginning to sound more like clicks, or clinks of metal against concrete. Five more, each gaining volume and clarity. Ocelot hadn’t noticed. Snake glanced into the blackness of nothing, hoping for Otacon or Meryl to emerge in the second Jeep.
A quiet tap of metal against metal sounded just next to Snake. Ocelot kept his eyes ahead, unaware of what was happening behind him. The space in front of Snake flickered before showing the robotic Gray Fox, standing tall above him. The cyborg said nothing, but pointed slowly at Snake’s hand. He had forgotten. All this time he had one weapon against Ocelot. His robotic hand still twitched, but he simply couldn’t feel anything in it.
“I’ll wait ahead.” Fox whispered, with a digital clicking.
He jumped up before vanishing.
Snake turned to Ocelot.
“Tell me everything now.”
“Mantis told me we were near the end.” Snake elaborated.
“Mantis is a fool.” Ocelot spoke.
“Why don’t you want me dead?”
“If I told you, you’d kill yourself, and we couldn’t have that now, could we?”
“Tell me now!”
Ocelot went quiet.
Only to be replaced by the roar of another motor.
A second Jeep appeared behind them just as Snake had hoped. Otacon was at the wheel.
Otacon isn’t dead.
“Otacon!” Snake shouted.
“Snake!” he replied.
Ocelot looked back.
“Oh very clever.” He began.
Leaving the wheel with his only hand for a moment, Revolver Ocelot span his pistol around his five remaining digits before pulling the trigger in the direction of the scientist.
Snake reached over and punched Ocelot in the face with his metallic hand as Otacon dodged the bullet, piercing his windscreen. Snake and Ocelot’s Jeep scratched against the wall as the wheel turned right by itself. Ocelot covered his bleeding face as Snake pulled himself closer, dragging his dead body with Fox’s gift.
“Snake! Jump over!”
Snake couldn’t exactly follow his friend’s orders. Both of his legs were immobile.
“Snake! I know why I cried over Wolf’s body!”
“Tell me why I can’t die!” Snake screamed in Ocelot’s ear.
Ocelot slammed his foot on the brake. The vehicle came to a sudden stop, followed by a bump from Otacon’s Jeep crashing in behind them. An angry, bloodied Ocelot turned his head to face Snake. He spoke clearly and concisely, spitting every other word.
“Listen. This isn’t like how you think it is. If you die, you’ll work out the answer pretty quickly. But doing so will drive you insane. For the remainder of your short and pathetic life you’ll go crazy. You’ll turn into a drunk, a drug addict… whatever. You must not die.”
“You can’t be doing this for my benefit.”
“Of course I’m not. I don’t care if you go mad. I don’t care if you start cutting yourself. I do care that you stay alive. For our benefit, not yours.”
“So why do you not want me to die?”
Ocelot didn’t reply, and Snake punched him again, knocking him away from the steering wheel.
“Have it your way. I don’t have to cope with any of this.” Snake started.
He shuffled over and hit the gas. The Jeep sped towards the exit, blowing their hair back and spraying the blood on their faces onto the windscreen of Otacon’s Jeep behind them. The light of day hit the three men’s faces. Everyone squinted in the burning white of the cold outside.
The Jeep continued towards the edge of the cliff a short distance away.
“I’ve died so many times now, I’m not afraid to die again!” Snake shouted to Ocelot through the ice cold wind.
“It’s not that simple! You have no idea what will happen if you die now!” Ocelot shouted in true fear.
“It can only upset your plan. Don’t make it seem as though you’re helping me. I swear we’ll both die here and now!”
Ocelot punched Snake in the face. Snake returned a fist to the base of his nemesis’ jaw, and clamped his metal hand on the steering.
“Snake, no!” Otacon shouted behind them.
Four wheels left the ground. The Jeep flew through the sky before it began its journey downwards. Two men held tight to the sides, watching the wall of ice below rush upwards to meet them. The Jeep smashed through the ice, propelling the two men just above the surface. As the vehicle sank into the waters below, their bodies bounced atop the frozen water, cracked, rolled, snapped, slid, disjointed and slowly stopped.