Chapter Twenty-Five: Blood On The Sand
As Kotal Kahn's forces stare down with Reiko's Red Dragon mercenaries, the general makes snide remark on how nothing makes him happier than bringing families together. Sonya tries to reach out to her possessed daughter, but Cassie refutes her words and attacks Sonya while Jacqui attacks Johnny Cage. Sonya is easily able to parry and counter her daughter's attacks, while Johnny is assaulted by Jacqui, who calls her own father a coward for not showing up on the island.
Johnny knocks Jacqui down and defends Jax, before realizing that the girls are being controlled, only to be punched by Jacqui. Kotal Kahn and D'Vorah meanwhile slaughter droves of Red Dragon mercenaries to get to Reiko and Skarlet. Reiko compliments Kotal Kahn's skill and boasts of how proud Shao Kahn would be to see Reiko destroy Kotal, as well as saying how disappointed Kotal's own father would be to see him fall.
Enraged at the mention of his father, Kotal tells D'Vorah that Reiko is his, while the Kytinn chooses to focus on Skarlet. Kotal charges Reiko with his sword drawn, reminding Reiko that he was always envious of the Kahn's power. Reiko blocks Kotal's slash, and clarifies that he envied Kotal's Blood Magik, before telling the emperor that he had only scratched the surface of its power. Reiko catches Kotal Kahn's next attack and shatters his sword with a single blow, all the while raging that if Kotal had his ambition, he could have obtained true godliness.
Reiko uppercuts Kotal Kahn aside, and D'Vorah panics when she sees her emperor in trouble, leaving her open to Skarlet stabbing her. D'Vorah sprays Skarlet with her blood, revealing it to be toxic, which weakens Skarlet as her body tries to absorb it. D'Vorah flies at Reiko as he stands over Kotal, only for the general to snatch her out of the air and tear her body in half.
Kotal mourns D'Vorah's loss, and Reiko gives him the ultimatum of surrendering to serve as his slave. Kotal refuses, standing back up and drawing one of his sickles, telling Reiko that he may have taken his family, Blood Magik, and comrades, but without Mileena's Edenian lackey, Kotal still has the sun. Drawing power from the sun, Kotal resumes his battle with Reiko.
Skarlet limps towards Reiko and Kotal's battle, when loud booms shake the island, and the warring sides stop and witness a second ship port. While Reiko is excited, Kotal curses as Mileena and her Tarkata hordes charge for the beach, the deposed empress vowing to kill both Kotal Kahn and Reiko.
Chapter Twenty-Six: Watch The Throne
Skarlet stands between Mileena and Reiko and Kotal Kahn, calling their stand off awkward. When Mileena questions why it should be, Skarlet proclaims that Reiko lost faith in her and turned to Skarlet. Mileena tries to convince Skarlet that Reiko is only loyal to himself and will betray her, but Skarlet laughs off her words and calls Mileena jealous before throwing a Blood Ball at Mileena, revealing Reiko had empowered her with Blood Magik.
Mileena's Tarkata soldiers charge at Skarlet to defend their empress, only to meet their deaths as Skarlet summons tentacles of blood to impale them. Mileena recovers and calls Skarlet Reiko's puppet, before throwing her sai and impaling Skarlet. Enraged, Skarlet rips the blades out and charge Mileena, proclaiming herself to be a daughter of Shao Kahn as well, but just as she begins to rant about ruling Outworld with Reiko as immortals through the Blood Code, she is stopped in her tracks by Ermac and held in place by his telekinesis.
Ermac gives the honor to Mileena, and the deposed empress defeats her 'sister' by performing her High-Roller Brutality, destroying Skarlet's leg. Skarlet survives, and Mileena knocks her unconscious by stomping her head into the sand, vowing to torture her later. Kotal Kahn and Reiko observe this, with Kotal mockingly telling Reiko of an Earthrealm saying: "Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned."
Infuriated, Reiko renews his battle with Kotal, pummeling the Osh-Tek emperor into submission. Ermac summons Shao Kahn's Wrath Hammer to Mileena, and she uses it to smash half of Reiko's face off, seemingly killing him. Ermac quickly realizes that Reiko is not dead, and that the Blood Code will revive him. Mileena calls that a problem before confronting Kotal Kahn. Though she threatens him with her sai, she decides to strike an accord with the emperor so that they will work together to deal with Reiko before dealing with each other.
On Kotal Kahn's ship, Kintaro and the Shokan observe the battle, with Kintaro calling it glorious and boasting they will crush Mileena and Reiko on the same day. When one Shokan makes a joke about Mileena saving Kotal for his 'Macuahuitl', the new Queen of the Shokan, Sheeva steps out and muses that maybe the situation calls for the two to work together. The Shokan kneel before their queen, but Sheeva belays the Shokan joining, citing their loses from Z'unkahrah weakening their numbers.
As the Shokan begin to gamble on the battle's outcome, Sheeva takes Kintaro aside and tells him depending on how the battle goes, they may avenge the emperor's death.
Back in Earthrealm, Takeda arrives outside the Sky Temple's entrance, and notes the calm weather. Stepping inside, he is shocked to see Fujin impaled on the wall with a naginta. Fujin, weakened but alive, reveals that Raiden has become possessed again, and stole the Kamidogu. Fujin says the Jinsei will heal his wounds, and tells Takeda they must intercept Raiden. An enraged Takeda tells Fujin that Raiden isn't the real threat, Havik is. Meanwhile, Raiden is flying to Shang Tsung's Island with a bag holding the Kamidogu, his eyes burning red with Blood Magik.
Chapter Twenty-Seven: Blood And Gods
Sonya Blade continues to battle against her daughter, all the while trying to convince Johnny Cage to fight back against Jacqui. Johnny is hesitant and unwilling to harm Jax's daughter. Sonya blasts Cassie back and then fires another beam at Jacqui, knocking her off of Johnny. Sonya tells Johnny that the Blood Code has not only possessed the girls, but given them super-strength as well. Deciding to stop holding back, Johnny slips on his sunglasses and strikes Jacqui with a Shadow Kick, sending her flying in a single blow.
Kotal Kahn stands with Mileena and Ermac, his sword drawn, observing as Reiko revives, the destroyed half of his face slowly regenerating. Mileena mocks his appearance, and while Kotal compliments the Blood Code's power, he reveals even it has limits, and tells Mileena that if they continue to kill Reiko, the power will eventually swallow his soul. Mileena is more than prepared to kill Reiko again with Shao Kahn's Wrath Hammer, but pauses to tell Kotal that she is not following his orders and that coming to the island to kill Reiko was her intent all along.
Enraged, Reiko lashes out with blasts of Blood Magik, and escapes Ermac's telekinetic hold with ease, all the while ranting on how he is novitiate to become the Blood God. Snatching Ermac by the construct's ankle, Reiko swings him into Kotal and Mileena before drawing Outworld's Kamidogu and cuts Kotal with it across the emperor's back, mocking him for losing such a powerful weapon. Reiko then cuts Mileena with the dagger just as she leaps at him with her father's hammer.
Standing over the two, Reiko contemplates enslaving them to his will but decides against it, telling them they will witness his rebirth and begins to tell them of his journey when he finally stepped out of the shadows.
Many conquests ago, Reiko stood in the temple of a goddess worshiped by the Kreeyans, a kingdom recently conquered by Reiko in Shao Kahn's name. Reiko was burning the temple to the ground as part of his victory custom, but became intrigued when he saw one of the statues of the goddess not burning. The goddess sang a prophecy of three words over and over: "Reiko's blood reigns."
When Reiko returned to Shao Kahn, the emperor hailed him as his most ruthless general and adopted Reiko, fashioning him into his heir apparent. Reiko believed this was the prophecy coming true, but quickly realized it was not to be when he saw Quan Chi's manipulations of Shao Kahn to serve his true master, the fallen Elder God Shinnok. When Shao Kahn died in Earthrealm, Reiko saw Quan Chi speak with Shinnok over the success of their plans and realized the god desired slaves and not generals.
Cursing the goddess for her false prophecy, Reiko returned to Outworld, preparing to kill himself, refusing to serve since he could not reign. Before he killed himself, he was approached by a mysterious stranger, who urged him to go through with the act, telling a shocked Reiko that he who loses everything has everything to gain, before revealing he had abandoned his realm and traveled across the void to follow a prophecy sung by a goddess: "Reiko's blood reigns."
Confused, Reiko asked who the stranger was, and he revealed himself to be Havik, the cleric of chaos. Promising Reiko that his blood will reign, Havik takes Reiko's dagger, and stabs him with it, proclaiming that first his blood must run. Reiko received his first taste of Blood Magik that day, and everything since then has led to this moment.
Reiko stands over his enemies and proclaims that his prophecy will at last be fulfilled. Kotal Kahn agrees that perhaps Reiko will become immortal and his blood will reign, when Reiko suddenly chokes as blood bursts from his neck. Kotal reminds Reiko of Havik's own words, that first his blood will run, and ignites his sword with solar flames as he slashes Reiko's legs off at the ankles, while Mileena disembowels the general with one of her sai, and Ermac telekinetically rips Reiko's head off, killing him a second time.
The cleric of chaos himself announces his arrival by commenting on how painful Reiko's demise looked. Kotal confronts Havik, telling him his twisted game ends here, but Havik only asks him if they have any respect for their gods. Just then, Raiden, possessed by the Blood Code and enslaved to Havik's will, arrives and rains blood red lightning down on all on the island, save Havik.
In Order of Appearance:
- D'Vorah (Death)
- Kotal Kahn
- Johnny Cage
- Sonya Blade
- Cassie Cage
- Jacqui Briggs
- Reiko (Main Story and Flashbacks)
- Red Dragon
- Sheeva (First Appearance)
- Shao Kahn (Flashback Only)
- Quan Chi (Flashback Only)
- Shinnok (First Appearance, Flashback Only)
- Havik (Flashback and Main Story)
- Kotal Kahn wields his sword again in Chapter Twenty-Seven, despite the weapon being destroyed in Chapter Twenty-Five, with no explanation given on how he gained a new blade.