(posted Tuesday, July 24, 2007)

Bella had had plenty of time to think about what she was going to say and pre-record it. Waitron had it on broadcast the moment she hit the floor of HQ. Eerily, she could hear her own voice echoing through the halls of the HQ and over the CCCP freq of the comm. as she headed for the armory and collected anyone she could reach. Sera, Thea, Vickie, Astra, Waitron herself, Drakenaur; young Shen Lung who was visiting Drake. Before the speech was over, they were on the street and looking to the sky.

Comrades, today is the day we hoped would never come, but prepared for nevertheless. The Rikti have come again. They were deadly before; they have had years to learn and they will be deadlier now. Make no mistake, this is a war, and there will be no quarter given. The Rikti will not rest until humankind is extinct. That is, and always has been, their goal.

And we will stop them.

We will fall and rise again. We will fight them alone and with our allies. We will fight them until our guns run out of ammunition, our powers are drained, our bodies battered, and still we will fight them with our bare hands.

We will not fail.

We are CCCP. Failure is not an option.