Trying Times is the seventeenth episode of Battle of Blood Gulch (Season 2). It was written by Cypher.


"Come on guys! We can still pull this off!" Sam exclaimed, to boost his teammates morale. The others wished to tell Sam it was futile, but he was both stubborn and determined. It had been at least ten minutes since their third defeat single-handedly by Rocket Shoes, and they all had gathered on the roof to lick their wounds and attempt to come up with a strategy to defeat the red juggernaut.

Jenkins scoffed at Sam's "motivation". "Listen Sam, I have no doubt in my mind we won't be able to come up with anything to beat Rocket Shoes, what with his sudden burst in badassery and all. Just give it a rest." Sam began to protest, and everyone immediately turned a blind eye to the coming arguement. Iron Fist started tapping the tip of his gravity hammer against his head, while Martinez occupied his time fiddling with his minigun. Faith uncomfortably sat down as far away from her two arguing teammates.

Chief turned his head so his view was down at the other end of the canyon. Breaks for rounds were typically ten minutes, but it had been fifteen minutes now. And Clay hadn't shown up again. Did Killgrave inform Song? Was everything alright over at the other end? He needed to know.

"Sam." No response. The arguement had become a fight, and it seemed that Martinez was gathering some money from Iron Fist. Sam had pinned Jenkins to the ground with his armed roughly held behind his back. Faith was doing her best to ignore it. "Sam!" The boy looked up and let go, inching away as if he was five years old again and was being punished for riding the family dog like a horse. Jenkins groaned as he unfolded and lay like a dead man on the ground.

"The Reds haven't signaled a new round. Head on over and see what's up." Chief ordered, sitting down beside Faith. "Um...okay..." Sam said, hesitatedly. "Can I drive the warthog?" There was a moment of silence, then Chief broke out laughing. Sam sighed dejectedly and made his way down the ramp. No one noticed that he forgot to grab a weapon.

Poor choice.

Swanson dived to the ground the moment he heard the gunshots. Alexa and Maddox weren't so lucky. Both fell next to him, locked up in the armor lock. Swanson went still, eyes shut tightly as he waited for whoever was shooting to shot him too. But it never came. He cracked an eye lid and saw the signature modified boots of Rocket Shoes, walking away while tucking a pistol in it's holster. A simple blink later and he was gone.

Swanson waited a few minutes before pushing himself to his feet. He quickly scampered over to Alexa and Maddox, checking to see if they were okay. Simply in armor lock. It was a relief. Swanson racked his brain for the information Maddox had given each of them of how to unlock the lock. The answer seemed to elude him. 'Wait...where are Killgrave and Xan?'

Swanson ran outside and saw the two in the same situation. Clay must've gone mad with whatever power he got his hands on. Song must've tried to intervene. "Oh god.." Swanson muttered, "if Rocket Shoes is out in the canyon like that..." His train of thoughts were stopped when a blue armored figure appeared on the hill in front of the base.

"Hey Reds!" It was Sam. Good Ol' Sam. "Reds!? What's the hold up!?" Jack quickly stepped into Sam's line of sight and waved him down. The Blue looked about cautiously before jogging down to his former teammate. "Hey Swan. What's going on? What's the delay?"

Swanson simply pointed at the locked COs. "I'm going to need your help getting them conscious again." Sam seemed to be thinking. "What happen-" "I'll explain later, just come on!"

Clay crouched up on the shaded outcropping the ridged the cliffs, silently observing the red and blue reviving the other reds. It didn't matter. The hacks made things so much more easier, it would take a simple minute to bring them down again. Then the Blue paused, saying something to Swanson before taking off back across the canyon. 'Jeez he's fast.' Clay thought, then he grinned. "Not too fast for me!"

Sam didn't even know what hit him. It was like he was hit with a cross between a jet and a steam engine. He flew for what felt like forever before he hit the ground. Hard. He rolled before finally coming to a halt. His groan was cut short when a foot slammed into his stomach, knocking whatever air that was left out.

His attacker grabbed the back of his neck and dragged him over toward the puddle of water that seemed to refuse to vanish. A simple slap knocked the helmet off, rolling down and hitting the water. It floated away. Sam didn't even get a chance to breath when his head was shoved in, deep.

Sam thrashed and kicked, fighting to survive. But his attacker was stronger. Suddenly everything started coming back to Sam, as if his time had finished and God decided it was time for his life to flash before his eyes. It felt like Ice Fields all over again.

Eventually Sam stilled, and his attacker let go. And laughed. Another kick, Sam flopped over, face barely out of the water. Rocket Shoes turned away from the blue. He'd deal with the others later. Blue base was calling.

"Time to pay a visit."

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