Light understood immediately. No mistake had been made. This was all occurring as part of Wily's design. A man who'd spent all of his life fearing and planning against his loss of control could not be undone by a lone boy and a bag of explosives. Light's eyes turned to the east. The industrial complex on the edge of the city. From a tower in the center of the complex, a red light pulsated. A second transmitter. They'd stopped nothing. Light fell to his knees and cried out into the night. He'd sent this boy to his death. The enormous loudspeakers, mounted to the steel walls surrounding the complex, began to howl. A voice followed the sirens.
Although difficult to make out amidst the commotion that surrounded him, Light heard enough to understand. He could make out the words, "threat to the safety of the city." He heard, "insurgent forces." He heard the loudspeaker commanding the frightened men and women of the city to return to their homes or risk being counted among the criminals. Even from the courtyard, Light could make out the thousands upon thousands of green-helmeted robots marching from the steel gates of the complex. Wily had built a fortress. He had built an army. He had been waiting for this moment to unleash it.
Emily, a crowd has gathered here
And once again they fail to see.
You can't just set the world at someone else's feet
And not get trampled underneath.
And I think somehow Joe knew it,
He paid the price he thought he had to pay,
but Emily, that debt was meant for me...
That debt was meant for me.
This is not the world my father knew.
This is not the world, I know,
he would have wanted me to build,
But I can't undo it now.
It's like a train, and all its cars are filled with steel,
that I would stop if I knew how.
And it is bearing down on me.
So I will stand here with my shoulders square and tall,
and when the whistle blows, not falter,
but when the crash comes I will fall.
With so much steam and steel behind it,
I won't slow it down at all.
Here comes the arm.
The building above Light shuddered. The weight of the screen and the metal framing that surrounded it overwhelmed the now destroyed upper levels of the building. He heard the sharp crack and whine of bending steel. He felt the quake of thousands of pounds of metal crashing into the earth and the marble surrounding him.
The explosion of steel and stone sent the crowd fleeing in all directions. Light barely noticed. The world had been crashing down around him for more than twenty years. He placed his hand in his jacket pocket and pulled out a small piece of paper, its creases cracked and splitting. He carefully unfolded it.
Soon, he would be with Emily. Only now could he summon the courage to read what she had written to him all those years ago. Only now could he bear to read her words.
Please don't cry for me. I know you never meant for this. I love you completely. Just remember that if I should leave you now, then in my final hour, I pray this letter finds you well before it all goes to hell. He could never cage the world. It's too big for anyone, and soon the dark will pass. I want so much to be with you but in my heart I know, Tom, the city needs you now. This city needs you now.
Amongst the turmoil and destruction, he could just make out the screams for help coming from every direction. Tom scanned the desperate and terrified faces of the people running past. He gazed once more into the flames reflected in the blast shield that covered Joe's face. He unlocked the helmet and removed it from the boy's head. Light looked at the bruised and battered face of a hero. A hero the city had lost. He spoke:
Joe, when you see Emily,
tell her to wait for me.
'Cause I still have work to do...