The Count of Egobossler stood in front of the roaring fireplace of his favourite room in his vast elaborate castle. The radiating heat warmed him superficially, but inside he felt cold, cold because nothing could ever replace the mother he lost to a father he hated. She was murdered by him for simply standing up for her son Erun.
"Here's to us..."He smirked and held up his wine glass to toast the two paintings he commission to be placed there.
"This time it will be me who conquers the Earth...Sosai Z will wonder why he didn't approach me sooner." He said confidently toasting his predecessors.
"Sire." Kempler addressed him standing just inside of the doorway.
"Are my family assembled?" Egobossler turned to look at his loyal soldier.
"Yes my lord." Kempler said and he bowed respectfully.
Count Egobossler picked up the white mask off his side table before he followed Kempler out the door.
Walking down the rich carpeted hallway Count Egobossler couldn't help admire his inheritance and good fortune over the past few years. Hearing the muffled sounds of the party only pleased him more.
It's a good day to share my ambitions with the rest of family. He thought and smiled broadly walking into the room and up to the podium.
Gently placing the mask in front of him he made a toast to his guests, a few hundred from what he observed from the platform.
Holding his glass of red wine up high he began his speech.
"Esteemed members of the Egobossler family... "His natural charisma radiated out to the people in the room dressed in formal gowns and suits returned his toast.
"Today we turn a new page in the history of the Egobossler name."Pausing to see their reactions he continued. "Today we become a world power by forging an alliance that will bring us the power we deserve...and the throne of the world will emblaze our emblem and name forever..."
He heard a few excited murmurs and some that didn't please his ears. He took note of the family members who gave him stern looks of disapproval. He would deal with them later.
Finishing his toast he mingled long enough to ensure he had their support in his military campaign and then left them to talk amongst themselves. He would return when the banquet was ready to be served in the meantime he had some business to attend to in his private office.
"Mr Grearer... These plans are brilliant, who's the engineer?" Egobossler admired the blue print of the design of the sleek looking plane.
"Farlow Aeronautics Engineering has some good people working for them." Gearer said proudly curling his dark moustache ends around his finger.
"So, you stole them?" Count Egobossler raised a curious eyebrow and placed the blueprint on the table.
" Stole is such a distasteful word my lord, I prefer to think that I borrowed them... we have managed to employ at least two engineer's who work at the company to be part of our growing global organisation...." Mr Gearer sounded confident. He should, thought Egobossler, the latest mecha is proof of what having good engineers that are paid well can achieve.
"And the one that designed this plane..." Egobossler inquired.
Mr Gearer cleared his throat. "No, he's not come on board yet... we...ahhh didn't approach him.
"Why not? I said I wanted the best engineers in the industry to work on my mecha designs! How else can I make the changes needed to defeat my enemies and rule the world." Egobossler demanded. "Didn't you offer him enough money?"
"Money...?" Gearer frowned. "We don't offer money to get people to work for us." Mr Gearer shook his head in disgust at the notion. "Galactor just takes what it wants..."
"I like real loyalty Gearer..." Ego glared daggers at the man. "I don't run Galactor the same way Katse did or Gelsadra. Offer him money...if he refuses to work for us then take another tactic. I want this engineer to design my mecha do you understand...he's got what I want in an Aeronautical engineer."
"His name is Matt Butler... I'll see what I can do." Mr Gearer said rolling up the plans.
"Don't fail me Gearer...He'll have a price, even man has a price, find what will entice him to work for us... "Count Egobossler warned before he drew his cloak around his shoulders to ward of a sudden chill that entered the room.
As he reached the door he remembered the other task he had for Mr. Gearer, putting a thoughtful finger to his lips he turned and smirked at him. "We know what two members of the Science Ninja Team look like... but I want the other three exposed."
"My lord... "Mr Gearer waited for his orders.
"We know that they live in Utoland...and it's likely they would be keeping a low profile look for anything that stands out as different. Get as many men onto it as you need."
"Yes Count Egobossler right away. The Swan, Swallow and Owl with be as exposed as the Eagle and the Condor-"Mr. Gearer began to promise.
"Don't give me promises, give me results!" Egobossler demanded. Gearer bowed submissively. "I understand."
"My guests are waiting for me..." Count Egobossler swept his cape around as he walked out of the room to go back to his entertaining.
* * * *
The next day...
"We're late Jinpei hurry up!" Jun scolded him as she ran towards the door.
"Awe Sis... I lost track of the time that's all." Jinpei apologised. Pursing her lips she tried not to let herself become worked up over a few minutes.
"Let's just go." She hurriedly told him jumping onto her motorbike the Swallow jumped up behind her.
"Are you nervous sis?" He asked over her shoulder.
"Kinda." She admitted this was the first time they were meeting without a social worker present.
Arriving at the park on the other side of Utoland Jun pulled up on the side of the road.
"They're here, and it looks like they have someone else with them." She said turning to look at Jinpei, butterflies become loose in her stomach.
"Sis, its Okay, we can go." Jinpei offered her an escape but Jun knew she didn't want to back out.
"I'll be fine Jinpei." She forced a smile and they walked towards the four people over near the playground equipment.
"Hi Jun." Natasha smiled as they approached.
Jun found a smile as she watched Dyami struggling to walk. "Dad...dad..." He said in baby language as he put out his little arms and stumbled over to his father. The older man chuckled and looked at Natasha.
"Oh...ahhh I hope you don't mind Jun, but I brought my father with us, he recently moved to the area." Natasha stood up along with her father.
"I'm Anthony," He introduced himself and extended his hand to Jun, she took it and appreciated his firm grip as he looked over at Jinpei.
"I brought someone too... this is Jinpei my brother." Jun introduced him.
"I'm happy to meet you..." Jinpei confidently went and shook each person's hand making Matt smile as he held out Dyami's little hand to Jinpei.
"Sis, he's getting cuter." Jinpei said. Jun felt her insides drop at that comment. Jun agreed with him silently, he had lost most of his babyishness and looked more like a little boy with messy dark hair that shot out in all directions.
"I showed him the pictures you sent." She quickly recovered, while Jinpei looked at her apologetically.
They talked for an hour about various things to with Dyami's mile stones and she watched him play with his father and grandfather. Jinpei seemed to be enjoying himself, playing walking games and clapping with Dyami causing him to giggle wildly with Matt standing close to them joining in on the games.
"So technically you're his Uncle." Anthony said causing Jun to stop in mid conversation with Natasha to hear his response.
"Yeah, you could say that...you see I'm adopted too." Jinpei grinned at Jun and looked back at Anthony and Matt.
"Sis adopted me when we lived at the orphanage..." Jinpei filled them in- Jun felt she could have strangled him. They didn't know she lived in an orphanage, and she wasn't prepared to give away that much about her past in a casual conversation.
"So you're a very lucky person then." Natasha eased the tension by returning Jinpei's smile.
"Well, the truth is I couldn't get rid of him." Jun resisted the urge to slap him.
"I'm lucky to have sis...we make a good family together." Jinpei glanced in her direction and then shut up quickly.
Dyami put out his arms and looked at Natasha. "Mum...mum..." and he waddled over to his mother. Those words stabbed at Jun's heart watching Natasha scoop him up and gave him a cuddle brought her back to the reality of the situation.
"Would you like a cuddle?" Natasha offered, Jun snapped out of her moment of self pity.
"Sure..." She said putting out her arms to take him. Looking into a face so much like Ken's with a shadow of her that soften his cute features, Jun tried not to allow the sad twinge in her heart to ruin the moment.
"I like the middle name you gave him." Jun said trying to smile. "It suits him."
She remember vaguely the request from his new parents. So much was happening at that point in time she forgot about it until recently.
"It was Matt's father's name." Natasha looked affectionately over at her husband. "Since his father is gone..." Natasha's eyes became distant and she didn't say any more and Jun didn't press for more information so the topic dropped.
Dyami grinned as she took hold of him. She watched him look back at his mother and then at her, he tried to squeeze her nose.
"He does that..."Natasha said warmly smiling at her son. "He's fast when he wants something, boy can he move like lightning..."
Jun looked at the bright blue eyed toddler. "I bet he can..." That comment made her think of Gatchaman, the white shadow.
"I have photos from his birthday... I thought you might like some copies." Matt handed Natasha her hand bag just as his cell phone began to ring.
"I have to take this." He said pulling it out of his pocket and he walked away to answer it.
Jun flicked through the photos with Jinpei hanging over shoulder.
"Wow, look at that." Jinpei exclaimed taking one of the photo's from Jun's hand.
"Who built that...it's amazing." He said admiring the replica. "That ship looks exactly like the first God Phoenix the Science Ninja Team had..."
"Matt built it...the ship sits in Dyami's bedroom on a stand." Natasha smiled proudly at her husband's handy work. "He's started to build the G-1 so he'll have a whole series of them- he figured he could give him one for each birthday."
Jinpei puffed up his chest with pride." The Swallow always has the coolest vehicle...and weapons."
Jun strategically elbowed him causing the Swallow to lose his grin and gulp in pain.
"Are you a fan of the Swallow I see." Natasha leaned forward looking at the floundering kid.
"Yeah...of course, you know everyone wants to be the Condor or the Eagle, but I reckon a kid that can kick butt is much cooler..." Jinpei blurted out.
"I think so too." Natasha winked causing Jinpei to blush wildly. "Matt's fascinated with the technology of the ships since he's an engineer and he designs planes..."
"That's understandable Natasha..." He leaned down and whispered in Jun's ear. "I like her sis, good choice." Jinpei blushed a light shade of pink and he began going all gooey.
From the corner of her eye Jun saw Matt's facial expression become worried as he walked back to them lost in thought.
"Honey, is something wrong?" Natasha asked him concern shadowing her pretty features.
"Ahh... no not really. Just a few complications at work that's all...usual business in designing new planes." Out of habit Jun watched him force a smile to cover his concerns. "We'll talk about it later..." He reassured Natasha. Jun watched the silent communication between them as Dyami squirmed in her arms.
"It looks like he wants to go back to his mother..." Jun held Dyami out to Natasha, and she smiled at Jun taking him into her arms and he nuzzled his face into her shoulder.
"He's become clingy of late." Natasha said apologetically as if to explain Dyami's reaction.
"We should go." Jun said standing up.
"I understand." Natasha stood up too. "We'll meet up again in six months...we can contact you through the agency."
"Yes, that will be great, it's a lovely park." Jun commented as turned to leave.
"Pleased to meet you Jun." Anthony said shaking her hand again. "And you too Jinpei."
"Pleased to meet all of you too..." Jinpei nodded and smiled brightly and he followed hot on her heels as she walked away she looked down at her beeping bracelet, and swallowed the dread that began to rise up inside of her.
"Jinpei why did you have to open your big mouth like that?" Jun fumed shooting him murderous glances.
Jinpei's face became a picture of innocence. "What did I say wrong?"
"You know perfectly well what you said!" Jun crossly confronted the baffle Swallow. While she waited for his answer her bracelet began to beep.
"It's started again..." She told the Swallow, as Jinpei acknowledged the call. "Let's go and find out what's going on." She said racing towards her bike with Jinpei jumping on behind her they raced towards the base...