Chapter Twenty-Five: The Last Hope
Later that morning in the penthouse apartment, Wolf and Lila stood before the window and held each other as they watched over the city. They both where dressed in their clothing and seemed to be silent.
The Lilia said, "so, what should we do now?"
Wolf frowned and replied, "I wish I knew."
Then there was knock at the front door, Wolf and Lilia let go of each other and looked at the door. Lilia remained by the window as Wolf pulled out one of his pistols from the holster hidden inside he coat. He readied the gun as he approached the door slowly. He then pressed the barrel of the gun against the door and he loudly said, "who is there?"
There was silence. Wolf looked back at Lilia then turned to the door and started to twist the knob. He slowly opened the door when a voice from the other side said, "Fox, Wolf. I'm glad you still are alive."
Wolf stood back as Katsumi entered the apartment. When Lilia saw she, she smiled and ran to him and hugged him. Katsumi then laughed as Wolf watched them. Then Bright Star start entered through the door, but it seemed much step caused her great pain. No one said anything as Star made her may to the couch and sat on it. She seemed gripped by some profound grief.
Katsumi then stepped away from Lilia but asked, "how the hell did you two survive?"
Lilia replied, "it was not easy."
Katsumi then said, "Cobra?"
Lilia seemed sorrowful as she told him, "he died so Wolf and I could escape. What happened to you Rabbit? Are any of the others still alive?"
Katsumi frowned and glumly said, "I told you I'm called Swift Rabbit cause I can swiftly escape trouble. I was with Stalking Lion and Wise Elephant. They where both killed, but they took several of these Death's Head abominations with them."
Wolf asked, "how did you find us here?"
Katsumi explained, "as an upstanding fascist on paper, it was not hard for me to research your history Wolf. I discovered you had a foster brother who works in the gestapo, and I remembered you two said you had someone on the inside. It did not take a genius to connect the dots."
Lilia looked and Star then turned back to Katsumi and asked, "why was Star killed when they bombed the old city."
"Because," Katsumi explained, "she was not hiding in the ruins, she has been in New Berlin all along."
Bright Star began to mutter as a tear formed in the eye covered by the tattoo.
"I've failed. The death of my people will never be avenged. The Reich has one, my whole life wasted. I was arrogant enough to believe I could defeat Axis."
Katsumi lowered his voice so Star could not hear. He said, "she is dying. Probably doesn't have a week left. She asked me to help her get into the palace so she can confront the Fuhrer herself."
Wolf asked, "how can the two of you make it to her? The place will be defended by a lot of elite gestapo?"
Katsumi told him, "it is Star's dying request. I really can't say no. We'll do our best to make it to the throne room."
Then the door opened and they all watched Royce run in, wearing his gestapo uniform and holding a gym bag. He seemed out of breath and was panting. When Star saw the uniform she said, "damn you!"
Wolf looked at the frail old woman and said, "he is on our side."
Royce dropped the gym bag and turned to Wolf. He explained, "Wolf, today riots are breaking out in cities in every Axis zone."
Then Star seemed to regain her composure. She said, "then maybe all is not lost. Maybe there still is hope for victory."
Royce seemed worried as he told them, "you don't understand. If the people rise up and Axis can't stop it, the Reich will destroy everything; kill everybody on Earth."
Lilia asked, "why, won't it kill them to?"
Royce shook his head. "That base the Luftwaffe built on the moon, it is meant to preserve members of the Reich for five centuries. They'll use space bombers that are stationed on the moon to use some kind of weapon, and someday they'll return to Earth and rebuild the Reich."
Wolf then exchanged glances with Lilia and said, "then I guess it is up to us to get up there and stop them."
Royce looked at the gym bag then turned to Wolf and said, "I thought you would say that Wolf. Inside the bag is a Luftwaffe uniform and fake identification. The Luftwaffe is launching space planes from the base outside New Berlin to evacuate the high level members of the Reich. Go there and and get on one of those planes, get the moon and see what you can do."
Wolf looked at Lilia and she smiled at him. Wolf turned back to Royce and said, "I need Fox. Can you help get here on board?"
Royce nodded. "I knew she would have to go with you. Inside the bag is another forged identification card, she will pose as the daughter of a high level member of the Reich. Though she should not talk, her accent will give you two away."
Wolf then look towards Star and said, "Bright Star needs to get into the palace so she can face the Fuhrer. Can you help her?"
Royce replied, "sure. During the Death's Head attack, I was in the bunkers with the rest of the gestapo. There are tunnels all over New Berlin which can take you into the palace, there is one passage that will take you into the throne room. But once she gets in there and deal with the Fuhrer, there is no way to get away most likely. There is an access tunnel a few blocks from the palace, the entrance code is the birth date of the original Fuhrer. It should be empty since the tunnels are only used during emergencies,"
Star looked at Royce and said, "thank you young man."
Royce said, "thank me by giving that bitch what she deserves."
Katsumi told Star, "when we get into throne room, I hold off the palace guard as long as I can. Besides, going out in a blaze of glory sounds like a good way to go."
Lilia looked at Royce. "We are all in our debt Royce."
He turned to her and said, "the fate of over six billion people is riding on you two. It won't be easy, the base will probably be manned by hundreds of elite gestapo as well as a squad of Death's Head. Also, I'm not sure how you can stop the Reich from destroying the world."
Wolf looked at Royce and said, "we'll be able to do it."
Royce then extended his hand and shook Wolf's hand as they both nodded.
Wolf said, "if we never meet again Royce, you have always been a real brother to me. I'm glad that we where friends. Give your parents my best."
Royce then slapped Wolf on the shoulder and said, "Wolf, if you and Fox pull this off; this may be the most epic tail that ever gets told. You two might save the world. If mankind is here in a million years, they'll still be telling this story."
Wolf said, "the is room in that tail for you two Royce."
Royce then looked at all of them. "A Luftwaffe space plane is going to launch in three hours so you two might want to get going."
Then Lilia kissed Royce on the cheek. "Royce, you came through for us. If we and Wolf are successful, it was only because of you."
Royce grinned and told her, "I always thought Wolf was a fool for falling for you Lilia, but, I guess I was the fool. Keep him safe."
"Goodbye Royce," she said.
Katsumi then went to the couch and helped Star limp out of the apartment. Royce then looked at Wolf one last time and said, "I'm going to be at gestapo headquarters, I'll be hoping that you show the Reich that it has this coming."
Lilia got her revolver and she and Wolf went to the door, but before he left; he turned to Royce and said, "Royce, live a long life; like you always wanted."
Royce nodded. "Well, that is entirely up to you. Now get up there a kick some ass."
The foster brothers took one last look at each other then Wolf and Lilia left; taking the gym bag with them. Once Royce was alone, he smiled and said, "Wolf, guess being a stubborn hard headed guy might save the day here. I'll miss you buddy."
Then Royce left as well. Outside the window of the apartment was New Berlin, it's people unaware that their fate and the fate of the world was in the hands of a few. It the next few days, either the resistance would prevail or the Reich would ensure its survival. The final battle of the war was about to begin.