"Metal Claw again. Knock her out of the way," Lanette ordered.
Bill's free hand swiped at 009, but she, anticipating it, jumped into the air, backflipped, and landed out of her opponent's reach.
"What other attacks do you know?" Lanette asked.
Her partner half-turned to see her. "A-attacks?"
"Metal Claw, Protect, Magnet Rise, and what else? Parry with Protect and hurry up!"
Bill flung his hands outward, his palms facing the Rocket as a green barrier glittered around him. Seconds later, the Black Tulip's baton hit his Protect with a bang.
"Iron Defense, Scratch, and Slash," he yelled to Lanette. "That's all I know."
"Fine. Iron Defense!" Lanette ordered. "Bill, you know one more. What about Iron Tail?"
When 009 swung at him with her baton again, Bill automatically blocked her with his forearm. Underneath cotton cloth, he could feel a warmth pass over his arm and his skin stiffening against his muscles. The agent responded by, once again, somersaulting backwards, landing where she started, and darting to the side.
As he kept watching her, Bill finally responded, "I can't use that by myself! I've tried, but when I try to focus—"
"Intercept! Follow with Iron Tail!" Lanette shouted.
Bill couldn't protest. He didn't even think about it. Instead, as if it was moving on its own, his hand raised just in time to grab the Black Tulip's baton just as she rushed him from the side. Then, his mind cleared, his tail stiffened behind him, and each joint began to glow. His feet slid into motion, turning his body until his tail cut through the air with a whistle. 009 gasped and let go of her baton. She leapt into the air and shoved her boots into Bill's shoulder, using him as a springboard to launch herself out of his reach once more. Thrown off-balance by her dodge, Bill tilted backwards, letting his tail — and the attack — slam into the ground just before he fell onto his seat. He coughed and sputtered at the dust that was kicked up around him as his fingers felt the ditch he had inadvertently created. Eventually, a realization dawned on him.