Another explosion of dark energy ruptured space-time, and the metal walkway beneath Elementa's feet bucked like an angry mule, throwing her into the air a good ten feet. She twisted around mid-air, and somersaulted to the rock outcrop above -- just as the walkway tore itself apart and fell into the abyss.
"Nice try, Negatron!" she said. "But not good enough!"
Subsonic laughter bellowed through the shimmering air like a fog horn. “You will not stop me, Elementa!" the booming voice echoed across the volcanic lair. "How can you fight what you cannot see?"
Elementa gritted her teeth. The rock face she now found herself standing on was quite expansive, and large boulders lay strewn across it. She couldn't see Negatron anymore. He must have phase-shifted out of visible light.
Suddenly, a devastating punch connected with her head, and she was violently thrown into a rock next to her, smashing it into gravel. She tumbled and cartwheeled across the obsidian rock face before coming to rest at the base of the NegaSpire.
"You will die!" the voice of her nemesis droned, seemingly from everywhere at once. She looked around the caldera, up the sheer cliff face surrounding her, down into the bubbling lava, and at the dark metal spire in its center. Suddenly, she realized something.
She didn't need to see Negatron to foil him.
She felt the convection of ashen air around her, and harnessed it. The hot gas swirled around her, funneling and converging by her will, and she let it lift her up.
"Come back, you coward!" Negatron screamed, and a lance of negative energy manifested below her, and darted towards her.
She redirected the current of air, making it blow her sideways, and she nearly lost control. The lance crashed past her and hit the rock-face in a blinding flash of ultraviolet. A fraction of a second later, the shock wave hit Elementa.
She caught the wave in her hands and pushed against it, but the force of it propelled her like a cannonball and she flew up, higher and higher. She could hear screams of anger far below her.
The top of the NegaSpire was within view, now. A pulsating rift in the multiverse, like a knife wound in reality. From beyond it, impossible colors emanated, defiantly challenging her eyes to make any sense of their otherworldly hues.
She felt a sudden electromagnetic tingle, and all of reality seemed to resonate as Negatron shifted himself to his source.
She could see him now. So close to the wound in reality that had produced him, he was visible even when phase-shifted. His outline shimmered and refracted in the air like a bubble of air would in oily water.
His silhouette was that of an ordinary man. His power in this world was to exist outside of physics. He was made from dark matter. Nothing could touch him unless he wanted to, and he could affect the energetic forces and twist them with his hands.
How could she possibly stop him?
The answer lay in the tiny metal tube in her hand. Concentrated anti-spin neutrinos, courtesy of the Pendulum Corporation. Even bitter enemies knew to work together when the universe was about to be destroyed – that was where they kept all of their stuff, after all.
"Your hold on reality ends now," she said, and cast the tube into the rift.
"Noooooooo—" Negatron's scream rung out. A bolt of energy flew out, and missed, exploding another volleyball court-sized hole into the slopes of the caldera.
Elementa hadn't missed. The tube hit the rift and—
Like an awkward video edit, the resonance ended – without a noise, without any visual sign. One moment Negatron and the rift were there, and an instant later, they were gone.
For a fleeting moment though, it had felt as if the reality-bending energy had rippled out and expanded. Elementa held her breath in the sudden silence, tensely waiting for some resurgence or sudden explosion. She expected something to happen that made things worse, like it so often did. Some last scream. Some last flailing.
But nothing happened.
After a quiet eternity, she let out a sigh of relief. It was over. It was done. Negatron had been defeated.
She let the wind carry her out of the volcano, into the sky past the news helicopters and military surveillance drones, and returned home.