EZRA stands on the veld, watching the acacia trees and sparse grass around the Ndebele karal burn.
EZRA: I don’t think I have ever regretted anything so much, as what I have just done.
Interior. NIOBE’s ship, where NEO, ZANDER, and THANDIWE have just returned. CREW members are manning their stations, including TAKEISHA and ASHOK.
NIOBE: Welcome back. We already have another situation. Thandiwe, Iscariot is torching the Ndebele villages one by one.
THANDIWE: Oh, no.
NEO: It makes sense. We’ve changed something by getting the machines on our side. Attacking the nomads shifts the balance of power back to himself.
THANDIWE: But what does he WANT?
NEO: Why don’t we go ask him?
Interior. NEO, THANDIWE, and ZANDER come through a line in a dusty outpost that’s no more than a shack. There are a crew of guards with them. They open a locker on the wall to reveal an arsenal of weapons.
Exterior. Each of them armed to the teeth, the group follows NEO outside where their rides are waiting: a squadron of Ducati motorcycles. They mount up and we see them ride off in the direction of the karal where THANDIWE met with NKAZIMULO.
As NEO and the squadron of bikes comes up on NKAZIMULO’s karal, BLISS and a battalion of nomads ride up alongside them. The horses and the bikes are running together towards the karal. BLISS grins, and then pulls her battalion away to the side of the karal where the horses and nomads can get water. We see she has women soldiers among her riders as well. The ZION squadron park their motorcycles and walk into the village where NKAZIMULO, METHEMBE, SUBUSISWE, and LANGELHILE are waiting, painted for battle with spears and shields in hand.
The warriors from the karal, the Himalayan steppes, and Zion assemble in a circle at the center of the village.
NKAZIMULO: The karals they have burned are to the East of here. They are heading our way.
NEO: What are they doing with the children they take from your people?
NKAZIMULO: They use them to generate power for the machines. They don’t have enough genetic diversity in their breeding system.
METHEMBE: This is YOUR fault. Zion people believe that the machines are their enemy. You are too stupid to realize that the machines follow your thoughts. WE have to fight against the enemy that YOU created.
BLISS: If Zion’s people put an end the belief, that the machines are their enemy, then there won’t be a need for people like Ezra Iscariot anymore. That is why he stokes hatred and fear of the machines in Zion. The antagonism, causes the machines to attack you. This increases his importance to the machines.
THANDIWE: But, if the machines don’t exploit human beings to get power, what will they use?
BLISS: The sun.
Underground. Exterior. Machines are racing towards the Zion ships.
Interior. NIOBE’s ship.
NIOBE: Here they come. Gunners, on my mark!
The machines burst into the intersection and their huge metal arms seize the ships on any available grip.
NIOBE: Open fire!
ASHOK in the gunner’s station unleashes a hail of projectiles. The machines are taking fire from the Zion ships without returning it. They grab the ships and begin to drag them into the tunnel leading towards the surface.
NIOBE: What the hell are they doing?
All the ships are being mobbed and dragged into the tunnel by machines, where they ascend as fast as they can. The people inside are being jolted and thrown across the floor as the ships bang against the sides of the tunnels. The crew are screaming in fear and pain.
Exterior. The Ndebele karal.
BLISS: You notice that in our reality, the machines no longer block out the sun.
ZANDER: This is part of your truce with them?
LANGELHILE: This is NORMAL. You Zion people have forgotten what it is to be human.
NEO: We need to stop Iscariot from attacking the villages. He’s only spreading the same fear and hate that he used to contaminate Zion.
There is a silence as everyone absorbs the truth of this.
Exterior. Aerial. The three bands of warriors are converging on a village where EZRA and the COUNCIL OF ISCARIOT are blasting the structures with flame throwers as the villagers flee. The Zion squadron engage battle immediately, as the nomads circle the village. NEO weaves his motorcycle through the burning planks, going straight for EZRA. ZWILLING opens fire as NEO jumps his motorcyle off a collapsed building, followed by THANDIWE and ZANDER, who cover NEO. EZRA aims his flamethrower at NEO, who leaps off of his motorcycle and kicks it out of his hands. NEO smashes EZRA to the ground and points a gun at EZRA’s temple.
NEO: I need answers.
EZRA [laughing]: What is there to talk about? I should think this is all obvious by now.
NEO: Why are you taking the children from the nomads?
EZRA: That’s obvious, because the genetic diversity of the generators is too homogenous.
NEO: But the nomads said the machines can take energy from the sun. So can the machines in Zion.
EZRA: Oh ZION is a pit. A hell hole. Your precious people of Zion are so ignorant in their CONVICTION that the machines are their enemies. I didn’t create that.
NEO: But you profit from it. You’re spreading it.
EZRA: My colleagues and I are only the successors of a long and illustrious lineage. So what if we were born on top! You would do the same in my place.
As he speaks, EZRA aims a heavy blow at NEO, which NEO blocks.
NEO: I don’t think so.
NEO punches EZRA hard in the face with the butt of the gun. He looks up to see that they are surrounded by the nine members of the COUNCIL OF ISCARIOT, being held off by the ZION SQUADRON. Their attack is held off as long as NEO holds their leader hostage. The camera pans around as BLISS approaches to face EZRA.
BLISS: We reject your nihilism.
EZRA [laughing]: That won’t make a difference, when the machines have eliminated all your kind. You think you can teach those crawling underground insects that the machines are their friends? That they create their own reality?
BLISS: It doesn’t matter if I can or not. My mandate is not to bring them to harm.
EZRA: You’re a hypocrite, then. If it’s wrong to harm them, it’s wrong to harm me. It’s wrong to fight anyone.
BLISS: We fight wholeheartedly in defense of what matters most.
EZRA: Your love makes you WEAK! Caring, is your greatest vulnerability. Which is why you will be defeated in the end.
BLISS: What makes the Law Of One more powerful than your law, is that every human being, every creature comes from source. Unity is innate. Even sexual desire is the desire for unity. You will never be rid of this intrinsic connection. Day in, day out. Denying a reality that is ever present, that is eternal. It exacts a terrible toll on you.
EZRA screams as he forces NEO’s arm down, grabbing at NEO’s gun. Both sides open fire as BLISS ducks in retreat, running for her horse. The nomads and the Zion squadron engage battle with the extremely proficient COUNCIL. NEO and EZRA are locked in hand to hand combat.
Meanwhile, BLISS races back to her horse, grabbing a spear on the ground, she mounts in one fluid motion and rides full speed towards EZRA, whose eyes open wide as she approaches. NEO turns to see her, screaming, fling the spear at full momentum, falling backwards as it flies in front of his chest and lands with a THWACK in EZRA’s heart.
Seeing their leader downed, the COUNCIL OF ISCARIOT are subdued, one by one shot with guns or arrows, or succumbing to the spears of the Ndebele.
Exterior. The tunnel where the machines are dragging the Zion ships to the surface. We see the light glinting off the hulls of the ships and the armor of the machines. NIOBE’s ship is flung out of the opening by the machine that is carrying it. It crashes to the ground and skids…we see that it is in the center of a huge, circular solar farm. The panels radiate out from the center, reflecting the brilliant light of the sun.
NIOBE: What in the world?