Valentine R. Carter
Artist: Rin Ginsuke - Song: Mysterious Shrine Maiden Flying Through Space
There was a saying the Earthlings had that Valentine found incredibly amusing. Indeed, it was quickly becoming one of his favorite things he had heard on the planet he now called home. Something about it was so very…Earth
, and now as he whistled to himself a mysterious little tune that had once been ubiquitous in the planet’s popular culture, that saying echoed in his mind.”Location, location, location.”
To that end, Valentine had chosen the only location that really felt as though it mattered; Europe, the heart of Shadow Fall on Earth. Suicide to most, surely, but he was impressively unconcerned. After all, there was hardly much way to track him when he emitted no spiritual energy, was there? And those few demons who had questioned him received a rather unpleasant end; forcible assimilation into the Collective in the drone caste, their minds thoroughly scrubbed of all information before being turned into what were functionally mindless husks, all in a matter of moments. It did, of course, leave them mentally destroyed, but such things wholly unconcerned Valentine or the people of Mars. These extradimensional vermin were not worth their sympathies, and the information gleaned from this approach was incalculably valuable to the Martian. They would do well as footmen in the coming assault.
Now, he had finally reached his destination, the town of Saint-Germain-des-Vaux, France. To most, this place was entirely unremarkable, but the extraterrestrial had found it perfect for what he had planned. Now, Valentine Ransom Carter stared out at the English Channel, a veritable horde of his assimilated former Shadow Fall folk behind him. They were scarcely sentient anymore, but perhaps that was for the best considering what he was about to do.
With countless recording devices readied in the skies, Valentine simply stared out at the ocean for a long while. He took a breath, then knelt down, bringing his mouth to the sea and taking a small drink of its waters. He familiarized himself with them, sharing the experience with all of Mars, and then opened his mind to the full power of the Collective. Staring with untold intensity at the Channel, at first nothing happened. But slowly, surely, the waters began to churn, and in time the very English Channel itself parted for the army of forced turncoats. Such force was beyond Valentine's own mind, for this was the work of not only him, but the Elders of Mars on his behalf.
All at once, the Martian's assembly of mindless operatives rushed through the sea's gaping maw, pushing directly into the heart of Shadow Fall on Earth; England, and in time, London itself. Valentine knew it was suicide for anyone, and so he had decided to make it suicide for those who would be most useful in death: Shadow Fall's very own citzens, their minds torn away unceremoniously and replaced with only the most primitive directives. Cruel, yes, by any Earth standard it assuredly was. But Valentine would never tell anyone that such was the case. None knew the nature of the Collective but Chifuyu, and if his drones were captured, their connection to the hivemind would be snuffed out in mere moments. This was, to the world he hoped was watching, nothing more than a rebellion of Shadow Fall's own citizenry.
The Eye of the Red Planet had fallen upon Europe this day, and its gaze was damning.