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“...sir...I’m afraid there’s more bad news.”

“What else could possibly be going wrong?”

“Your performance review is in, sir. It doesn’t look too positive.”

The Shadowy One sighed. Not to be confused with the Shadowed One, the leader of the Dark Hunters. The Shadowy One was just middle management. He had also changed his name several years back to “The Shadowy One,” partially to strike terror in Toa everywhere, and partially because he really, really looked up to the Shadowed One.

Unfortunately, the Shadowed One did not seem to return the feeling. In fact, the leader of the Dark Hunters was currently very disappointed in the Shadowy One, judging by the performance review that one of the shadowy minions was currently going over.

“...and our forecast for the next quarter is even lower,” the Dark Hunter continued. “Matoran everywhere are becoming less and less fearful of us. If we don’t do something about our declining performance now...the Shadowed One will-”

“Yes, yes, I know what the Shadowed One will do to us. He’ll shut down our base and send us all to work in the mines at minimum wage,” the Shadowy One interrupted, looking quite distressed. “We have to do something to show the Shadowed One that we’re serious. Something big. Something that will demonstrate that we are still to be feared…”

The Shadowy One stood up from his ridiculously oversized chair made out of velvet cake and strolled towards the window. “We need to make a splash...something that will make Matoran everywhere tremble when they...hey...what’s that island over there?”

“That, sir, is the island of Chuggo Nui. It’s a small island, the majority of the inhabitants are Matoran, and there’s one Toa that stands guard.”

A smile suddenly appeared on the Shadowy One’s lips...or, it would’ve, if he had lips. “Get your nets ready, boys…” he said with an evil grin. “We’re going on a hunt.”

===THE NEXT MORNING, CHUGGO NUI===

Things were going awfully for Turaga Tapori Hofu.

First, he had been woken up quite early this morning when a stray Gukko bird got into a fight with a Ta Matoran over whether or not her babies should be made into scrambled eggs. Later, salt water had gotten in his bath, and after that, he had lost three straight rounds of Super Bonkle Bros, only adding to his saltiness. Then, to top it all off, Toa Mesonak, the island’s protector, was late to his usual meeting with the Turaga today.

“Where is that Mesonak?” he grumbled. “Probably off recording another dumb podcast. I swear, if he keeps being late to these things, one day, he’ll be late to everything! And if he’s late to everything, some monster will come in and destroy our village, and he won’t know until-”

The Turaga had really gotten into his ranting, and in so doing, hadn’t noticed that he was quite close to the edge of the suva.

...although he did notice as soon as he slipped.

“WAUGHHHHHHH!!” he screamed as he fell down the side and crashed into the grass below.

A group of Matoran heard the cries and came rushing to his aid. “Turaga!” they asked in unison. “Are you all right?”

“Yes, yes, I’m fine. Leave me alone. I was just waiting for a meeting...and forgot where I was standing. Now, get out of here, before”-*CRUNCH!*

Tapori Hofu paused. Crunch? The grass didn’t usually go crunch. What was going on here? The Turaga looked at the ground and noticed he had stepped on a note.

“...it’s...paper?” asked an Onu Matoran.

“Read it!” shouted a Ga Matoran excitedly.

“I will, I will,” the Turaga said. “It’s probably just another cheap explanation from Mesonak as to why he isn’t on time...again.”

Tapori Hofu picked up the note, uncrumpled it, and read aloud its contents.

“HA HA HA! Your precious Toa has been abducted! If you want to ever see him again, surrender control of your island immediately!

Yours truly,

The Shadowy One.”

“ABDUCTED?!” one of the Matoran shouted. “THE ALIENS ARE REAL!”

“Pipe down, you fool,” the Turaga said, “abducted is just another word for kidnapped. The Dark Hunters have kidnapped our guardian...and they’re holding him for ransom.”

“Well...we can’t just give up our island!” a Po Matoran chimed in. “We’ve got to do something to fight back!”

“...without a Toa, our options are...fairly limited..,” the Turaga mused. “Though I suppose I could still make a decent fighter if I got to stretch first.”

“Then I guess it’s up to us,” a Le Matoran bravely said.

“...up...to you?” Tapori Hofu asked.

“Yep. We’ll go rescue Toa Mesonak!”

“...who exactly is we?”

“Why, the other Matoran who live here!” the Le Matoran chimed in. “We’ll storm that tower and get our Toa back!”

“...storming a tower full of Dark Hunters? Are you joking?” the Turaga asked. “You won’t even get past the ‘welcome’ mat!”

“Mesonak’s trained us how to fight!” a Ga Matoran chimed in. “We can do it!”

“Yeah!” a Ta Matoran agreed. “Let’s put that training to use!”

“...great…” Tapori Hofu muttered. “Mesonak trained Matoran...what could possibly go wrong?”

===LATER, AT THE TOP OF THE DARK HUNTERS’ TOWER===

“Sir...we, um...we may have a problem.”

“...what is it?”

“The Matoran we kidnapped that goofy Toa from,” he said, gesturing to a tied up Mesonak in the corner, “they’re storming our tower.”

“...what, really? They’re attacking us?”

“Yes sir.”

“Well, that’s even better, I suppose. No pesky survivors who could go recruit other Toa. Go then, destroy them all.”

“Well, sir, that’s the thing, um…”

“...you...do have the capability to deal with a group of pesky Matoran, don’t you?”

“Well, it’s just that you never actually got around to teaching us combat training, so…”

“...oh. Right. Whoops. Well then, do the best you can.”

“Sir?”

“I’m sure you’ll figure out something...Matoran are stupid. They’ll be vulnerable at some point...right?”

The Dark Hunter gulped, and then turned to his five comrades. “...we may be in trouble, here.”

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