The Professor was dead.
He'd overturned the smoking ruins of his base to find his friend, the quickly cooling body faint on his bio-scans. Obviously he had not been complicit in Jones' treachery.
The base and his friendship with The Professor were his final bastion of normalcy after his disastrous last mission, but even that was denied him, another certainty cruelly ripped away by Jones. He wished he could return to put another clip of bullets into his corpse.
Lying in the dirt and rubble, he held The Professor's body to him.
"When did the world go mad, old friend?" he whispered as the sun set behind them.
His mind was blank.
Normally Rex could conjure a plan from thin air. When circumstances were lowest, when he had no weapons, no contact to base, no chance of surviving, he would see with startling clarity what what to do next.
This time when he paused, took a breath and exhaled - he had nothing. He didn't care about the last mission, or the Torimbalo or whatever, and Jones was already dead so revenge was unnecessary.
Rex was empty.
It took death to bring him around.
Knowing full well he would return to base, his enemy had waited until he was helpless and come back, weapons raining fire down on the already scorched planet.
Hearing them coming, Rex took a breath, exhaled and saw clearly what he had to do. In that moment, he was vaporised.
"..." thought Rex as his component atoms dissipated.
That wasn't supposed to happen.
Rex had believed, the way everyone believes, that he would live forever. He knew technically that this was not possible, and had a suspicion he'd die in the midst of a fiery battle or chained in a dungeon, but never-the-less the human brain likes to think it will continue forever despite all evidence to the contrary.
The fact that Rex's consciousness was now slowly gathering itself together in an endless white plain was both reassuring (to that part of him that couldn't accept death) and at the same time utterly terrifying.
"Where am I?" whimpered the swirling chaos of Rex's essence.
Do not be alarmed.
The voice came out of nowhere. This made sense, as Rex was nowhere and had no senses as such to pinpoint the origin of the... sound? Was it a sound? No, this was one consciousness talking to another, pure thought.
"Where am I?" asked Rex, concentrating hard to keep himself together.
I am another such as you.
The voice spoke in a grave yet comforting manner.
"Is this the afterlife?" asked Rex, not believing it to be possible.
Not as you are thinking, the voice explained.
You have cheated death, and this is where your soul resides when you are not visiting the mortal plain.
"But how..." began Rex, "but how is this possible?"
The power of the Torimbalo.
Rex's essence whirled and partially dissipated with the shock. He willed himself back together.
"That again?" he wondered.