Robotech II: The Sentinels Book Four #13
"Requiem for Justice"
Story & Art - John Waltrip & Jason Waltrip
Published by Academy Comics Ltd.
Release date - December 26, 1996
Cover date - December 1996
THE STORYAt the base of the Royal Pyramid, Invid Inorganics march and fire wildly at the patrolling Expeditionary Force officers. Within, Jonathan Wolff orders the search party, which was trying to locate T.R. Edwards and his men, to retreat. Vince Grant orders the Destroids to scramble. As the REF personnel wonder where these Inorganics came from, Wolff is informed that Dr. Lang's personnel carrier has landed. While Lang and the REF Council make their way to the carrier to return to the SDF-3, Wolff tells Vince to have all the Destroids and Hovertank units converge on the Royal Pyramid. He then asks who was in charge of disposing of all the Inorganics after the Invid were defeated on Tirol. He is told that it was General Edwards ...
Beneath the Royal Pyramid, Edwards tells his men to contact their remaining forces on the SDF-3 and the Jutland and to prepare the Invid Brain for transport. However, he has one stop to make beforehand. He returns to his hovercar and orders it to his personal headquarters.
In the streets of Tiresia, Inorganics clash with Destroids and Hovertanks. The city burns anew.
Aboard the SDF-3, in the ship's situation room, Captain Forsythe greets Lang and the council. He informs Lang that the ship is secure, but Edwards's men have gotten away with the Jutland. The council is shocked, but Lang tells them to remain calm. He is certain that Edwards is employing the Invid Brain they captured during the liberation of Tirol, that the Inorganics are under his control. "Send whatever forces you can to support the ground troops," Lang tells Forsythe, "but the SDF-3 must be protected at all costs. Without this ship ... we can't get home." Forsythe sends Veritech Grey Squadron down to join the battle.
Beneath REF Headquarters in Tiresia, Benson tells Edwards that the Jutland will be sending a Veritech escort in twenty minutes. Edwards says for them to execute the extraction at the south wing of the Royal Pyramid. He proceeds to Lynn Minmei's cell. She screams at the sight of him. He quickly covers her mouth and insists that she's coming with him, that she's his, not Hunter's and not Wolff's. She continues to scream and he slaps her, drawing blood. "If you don't leave me alone, T.R. ... I'm going to kill you," Minmei says, wiping the blood away. Edwards prepares for another slap, but when he sees the defiant look in her eyes he stops.
"I'm going to make you beg me to forget what you just said," Edwards says.
"No, you're not," Minmei says, her eyes narrowing.
"No, you're not," a voice from behind tells Edwards. Edwards looks back as a hand grips his. Suddenly, a bearded pilot swings Edwards overhead by his arm, then smashes Edwards's face into the wall. The pilot reaches out his hand to Minmei. She asks who he is. The pilot removes his helmet, revealing himself to be Lynn Kyle. "Come on, Minmei," he tells her. "Let's go home." Edwards reaches for Minmei's leg and insists that she's his, but Kyle grabs Edwards by the arm and tells Rebecca Nicks, standing by, to look after Minmei. Kyle puts Edwards in an armlock and turns him over. "I've never taken a human life," Kyle tells Edwards, "but I'll kill you if you don't lie still."
"Go ahead. Take the little slut. She's a waste of time in bed anyway," Edwards says.
Kyle prepares to smash his face in, but Nicks and Minmei tell him to stop. "It's over, Kyle. Just hang on to him and we can end it all today," Nicks says.
"Please, Kyle. You're not a murderer," Minmei says.
Kyle lifts Edwards up and slams him against the wall. "War's over, General. You're going to order your troops to stand down. We'll strike a peace with the Invid. And then we're all going home, right?" Edwards responds in the affirmative. "The wolf shall dwell with the lamb. And the leopard shall lie down with the kid. And we're all going to live happily ever after, right?"
Just then, Minmei screams. One of Edwards's men has stabbed Nicks in the back, and has Minmei by the throat. Edwards orders him to kill Minmei, and as the soldier's knife begins to draw blood, Kyle rushes at him, disarming him and knocking him out. As Minmei sobs, Kyle notices Edwards reaching back. Kyle leaps at Edwards, but Edwards draws a gun and fires a shot. Minmei screams, and Kyle tackles Edwards, but it's not enough. Lynn Kyle is dying. Edwards pushes him aside and stands as Minmei rushes to her dying cousin's side.
"Well," Edwards says as he dusts himself off, "that turned out better than I thought."
"The war was almost over," Kyle croaks out. "We'd won."
"Yes. We'd won. You won it for us, Kyle," Minmei says.
"Tell me you love me, Minmei. Let it be the last thing I hear. Please."
"I love you, Lynn Kyle. Now and forever."
Minmei kisses Kyle as Edwards barks orders into the comm link on his uniform collar. "That's right, Benson. Brain extraction is at south pyramid, but I want an A/B VT pick up at this location. Now move!" He yanks Minmei away from Kyle's body. "Get up! Don't waste your tears on him, my sweet. He's finished with you ... but I'm just getting started." He forces a kiss on her and drags her away, cackling.
Meanwhile, over the planet Spheris, the forces of the Sentinels descend towards the atmosphere in a Haydonite flyer, approaching the planet's central Invid Hive. Jack Baker asks the Invid Tesla if he's sure he can control the Invid garrison there. "I wish you would stop asking me that," Telsa whines. "Of course I can. I am evolved now." Karen Penn asks what happens if they fire first. "They will not. I have already seen to it. My will is there. Get me closer."
Below, the Invid commander is informed of an unidentified object approaching the Hive. Commander Nazdak orders a wave of Shock Troopers to be deployed to intercept.
Veidt tells Tesla that they are now over the Hive and that he may now proceed with his orders. "Loyal hordes of the Invid race! Hear my voice and obey! I am Tesla, your master! You will do as I command!" Nazdak is infuriated by the challenge to his authority. As both Invid shout for the Shock Troopers' attention, the troops stand motionless. Jack shouts for Tesla to tell them to disarm, but Tesla tells him that he's concentrating. Meanwhile, Nazdak orders the planet's Invid Brain to go to full power.
"Assert your control over the Troopers! Destroy that usurper! Fire!"
Meanwhile, Tesla sends out contradictory orders. "Protect your master!" he demands. "Fire!"
The Invid Shock Troopers begin firing on one another, and several of those still under Nazdak's command fire upon the Haydonite craft. As the flyer shakes, Jack demands to know what's going on. "I thought you said you could control the garrison!"
"I am controlling the garrison!" Tesla snaps. "I'm controlling half the garrison! Unfortunately the Hive Brain controls the other half!" Jack orders Veidt to get them out before they're blown out of the sky, but it's too late -- a blast from a Shock Trooper knocks them out of the sky ...
NOTESTIMELINE - Modified Jack McKinney novels timeline.
- Dr. Emil Lang (next in Prelude to the Shadow Chronicles #1)
- Jonathan Wolff (next in flashback in Invid War #3)
- Vince Grant (next in Prelude to the Shadow Chronicles #1)
- Jack Baker (next in Prelude to the Shadow Chronicles #1)
- Karen Penn (next in Prelude to the Shadow Chrnoicles #2)
- T.R. Edwards (next in Prelude to the Shadow Chronicles #1)
- Benson (final appearance)
- Lynn Kyle (next in Prelude to the Shadow Chronicles #1)
- Rebecca Nicks (final appearance)
- Justine Huxley (final appearance)
- Scott Bernard (next in flashback in Class Reunion #1)
- Raul Forsythe (last in Robotech II: The Sentinels Book III #8, final appearance)
- Bela (final appearance)
- Gnea (final named appearance)
- Veidt (next in Prelude to the Shadow Chronicles #1)
- Teal (final appearance)
- Baldan II (final appearance)
- Burak (final named appearance)
- Tesla (final appearance)
- Nazdak (first and final appearance)
Study that cover a moment. The golden logo and big red Robotech Defense Force fighting kite set against the black backdrop suggest that Jason & John Waltrip were aware of the layout and appearance of the first Antarctic Press ROBOTECH comic cover; it's a distorted mirror image of the first book from Academy's successors, which would be all the more effective if a stray "TM" wasn't hovering right above T.R. Edwards's crotch. In any case, though, it's both an interesting nod to the next comic license holder and a good stark "final issue" cover, despite the fact that it gives away the book's major plot point -- though I doubt there were many reading the title for whom Lynn Kyle's death would come as a shock.
Despite the fact that the Veritech squadron sent down by Raul Forsythe appears to be entirely made up of Alpha Fighters, when it comes time for the big two-page spread of battle, all the Veritechs that you can make out in the sky are VF-1 Valkyries. One of them lacks a gun pod; two have Skull Squadron markings on their FAST packs, and still another appears to be a VT-1 from Macross: Do You Remember Love? However, given that this is the last issue of the series, I'll give the Waltrips a pass on this. Clearly they wanted to reach back and toss the classic mecha in for the climactic mecha battle of this final issue.
Note that the Invid commander on the crystal world of Spheris, Nazdak, is wearing a jeweled necklace and a variety of jeweled rings. That's a cute touch, I thought.
Honestly, of all the places the Sentinels comics could have ended, I think this was a good spot. It provides a certain amount of resolution, just in case the Waltrips never returned to the story, but also gives enough of a cliffhanger that the fans still want to see what happens next according to the Waltrips' version of events. Sure, Edwards has the upper hand and the Sentinels are in a really tight spot, but nowhere else could so much false hope have been dangled in front of the readers -- it's just as Minmei said to Kyle, "The war was over. We'd won." That's just a beautiful note to end on. Everything almost ended for the best. Sure, Kyle's notion was simplistic, but he was caught up in the moment; he had the enemy at his mercy, and suddenly it was like he could see the light at the end of the tunnel, even if that light was something of a fairy tale ending.
While the storyline concerning T.R. Edwards was ultimately resolved to some extent in Prelude to the Shadow Chronicles, it was resolved with certain details changed -- his motivation and goals, for starters -- and others diminished, such as his twisted feelings for Lynn Minmei. Kyle's death appears in flashback in the first issue of Prelude, more or less as it happens here, while the unleashing of the Inorganics on the REF forces, which occurred at the end of Sentinels Book IV #12, is repeated in a slightly different sequence later. At the same time, the Spheris storyline that ends on a cliffhanger here was dropped entirely -- indeed, the entire Sentinels Campaign is resolved off-panel -- as well as the story of the evolution of the scheming Invid scientist Tesla. It's such a shame that it's unlikely we'll see him again.