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Thread: Blazing Dreams: Apocalypse Rising

  1. #1
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    Default Blazing Dreams: Apocalypse Rising

    It's finally here guys. As some of you will know, I've been holed up for the past month working on this as part of the TEN 1st anniversary which is today. Before I launch off into what all I've got for you guys today, let me start by saying that this is a two-shot that fits inside the Blazing Dreams: The Eternal Night storyline. You could call it a special (or a 'movie', in the vein of the last Blazing Dreams special). While it takes place directly after the latest volume of TEN, it's quite different from usual. I won't say anything else, but you'll figure out what I mean in a few minutes.

    To readers who might not be familiar with Blazing Dreams, don't let that get in your way. Of course it would help quite a bit, but believe me when I say even my long-time readers won't have a huge advantage. I would greatly appreciate it if you read, even if you don't want to comment.

    Of course, as I've literally talked about non-stop the past few weeks, this is not the only thing that is set for release on this anniversary. To prevent this from getting too long (and boring), feel free to skip the spoiler and skip straight to the fic if you like.

        Spoiler:- Anniversary Surprises:


    A few more notes and we'll be ready to go. This is going to be a two-shot, with the second part being posted in two weeks, give or take. I would like to warn everyone that there is some disturbing imagery in this. Nothing all that graphic, but I just want to give fair warning.

    That's (finally) it. Please, enjoy everyone.




    |blazing dreams|
    |apocalypse rising|

    \part one/

    |the eternal night|


    \/
    /\



    this fiction is rated pg-13
    for profanity, violence and disturbing imagery
    reader discretion is advised










    Cascading sheets of rain poured down, illuminated by the occasional arc of thunder. The harsh, rocky terrain was quickly inundated by the downpour, turning each footfall into a tiring slog through the standing water and mud.

    Yet another flash of lightning ignited the night sky, casting a brilliant glow across his path. Several hundred feet more of the terrain was suddenly visible before the rain doused the light. A hand reached out from beneath the worn gray traveling cloak, wiping his lined face wearily.

    The howling call of the wind filled his ears, crying out in some long forgotten song. A bolt of thunder cast light upon his surroundings once more, bringing him pause.

    He turned from his path, taking a few short steps to his side. The sky seemed to glow a dull white, almost visibly crackling with electricity. The small amount of light was all that was needed to expose the silhouettes of the many tall peaks that surrounded him. His gaze was not upward, however.

    Stretched out in front of him was a massive black pool, seemingly large enough to swallow the largest mountain. It reached out into infinity in the downpour, melting with the darkness on all sides. The divide between the sky and earth was lost, and suddenly it seemed entirely possible that these were the gaping jaws of Hell itself, reaching out to reclaim it's rightful property. What had been cheated from it. What it needed back.

    With a momentary flash of light, it was easily apparent that it was nothing more than a small mountain lake, it's surface scarred and pitted by the fury of the rain.

    He blinked, turning away.

    It was nothing.

    Pulling his hood lower, the traveler continued on his path.



    \/
    /\



    Almond eyes bore holes in the familiar grain of the wood above, a dead stare willing it to ignite and burn away into nothing. She sighed, rolling over on her bunk.

    Something was brewing. The level of activity was astonishing, with soldiers rushing around at all hours of the night and day. Arms were being made and distributed at an incredible pace, something she had never seen in her lifetime.

    It made no sense. Admittedly, there had always been weapons and soldiers ready to use them, but it had always been in the case that the Council had located them at long last. The Governor was always spewing mindless vitriol about how, one day, the Horde would rise up and retake Johto. Never was there any actual plan as to how a meager force of a few hundred soldiers could take down the entire governing body of the Johto.

    Yet...that seemed to be exactly what was being planned. How it could work was beyond her.

    She rolled onto her back, glaring up at the upper bunk once more. Perhaps it had something to do with the new forces that seemed to be springing up everywhere? The 'Elite', as they were so fondly called by the Governor.

    To be honest, they scared her, although she would never admit it. Rarely were they seen outside the castle. On the rare occasion they were seen, they were covered in bulky armor. Their faces were always completely covered in taut gray masks, giving them the appearance of featureless zombies.

    The part that scared her, however, was not the way they looked. It was how they became Elite in the first place. Most of the teenage boys that were in training left off in the middle of the night, and that was it. If they became Elites, which she could only presume they did, they cast aside their old lives, staying holed up in the castle most of the time.

    She winced, sitting up carefully in the cramped bunk. The teenage girl, no more than fourteen, ran a hand through her short brown hair. “Might as well go get training...”

    The teenager stood up, stretching. The cramped girls' room was currently empty but for the rows of empty bunks, which was the way she liked it. Peace was all she was looking for.

    She started to weave her way through toward the door when she caught a glimpse of herself in the sole mirror in the room. She was somewhat taller than most, standing at eye level with most of the boys. Her figure was decidedly similar to the boys as well, which didn't bother her. Much.

    Shrugging, she made her way outside. It was a particularly gloomy day, with the sun fully obscured by the clouds. Tightly packed wooden buildings were all around, housing almost the entire normal population. Ordinary soldiers, she knew, took up residence on the other side of the small village.

    The teenager walked toward a small way between two of the barracks, silently cursing why they couldn't have put at least a bit more space between them, when she heard a some loud yells from ahead.

    Curious, she sped up, careful not to brush up against the bare wood of the buildings on either side of her. A short moment later she emerged.

    Her eyes quickly roved over the scene. There was a small dirt path between the groups of tightly packed buildings, leading down a hill and out of sight on one side and leading up toward a sheer rock face on the other. Close to twenty people were hovering around...well, something. She couldn't see through the group of people.

    She took a few steps forward before a harsh yell stopped her in her tracks. “Everyone, away! Back up NOW!”

    Three men were running down from the top of the path, waving their arms at the crowd. The middle man was flanked by two heavily armored guards, clad in deformed facemasks.

    The Elite.

    The third man was almost as intimidating as his guards. He stood imposingly tall, dressed in a long gray cloak. His face was contorted in anger, as it was usually. The Governor did not take kindly to disobedience, imagined or real.

    The crowd wasted no time in backing off, clearing the way for the newcomers. As they moved aside, the teenage girl could finally see what had everyone so interested. A hunched-over figure was lying on the ground, smoking ever so slightly. She frowned; it almost looked like a burnt body...

    “Back off!” roared the Governor, slowing to a stop in front of the gruesome scene. He paused, recoiling slightly. Dark blood was pooling up on the ground surrounding the figure, who looked clearly dead.

    One of the Elite kneeled down in front of the figure. “It's Lord Hunter.”

    The low, gravelly voice sent chills down her spine. Shaking her head, she frowned at the figure. How did a disfigured body end up in the middle of the village...?

    “Shit...”

    The Governor jumped, staring down at the figure. “Hunter? You crazy bastard! What the hell happened?”

    To the teenager's amazement, the figure slowly sat up. Someone from the crowd gave a frightened scream, something she couldn't blame them for at all.

    The man's face (at least she assumed it was a man) was burnt nearly beyond recognition. What was left was a charred, mangled shell of what it had surely once been. What was worse, it looked as if he had been brutally tortured before hand. He had no eyes, ears or nose she noticed, her stomach turning.

    “I...need to see the King at once.” the man said, coughing up black bile onto the ground.

    “I...sure, of course...” muttered the clearly stunned Governor, his eyes on the bile. “What the hell happened to you?”

    “I'll explain later, but right now I have to talk to the King.”

    The Governor shook his head, taking a deep breath. “You two, assist the Lord back to the castle. All of you,” he turned to the silent, shocked crowd. “Go back to whatever the hell you were doing. Go!”

    Most of the people turned away, shocked looks on their faces. She couldn't blame them; she probably looked the same. Knowing not to refuse an order from the Governor, she turned to leave. Before she began to walk off, however, her gaze fell back on the figure.

    She jumped. For a second, he was looking directly at her, the dark voids where his eyes had once been staring straight into her eyes.

    Then the pair of Elite reached down to help him to his feet and the moment was over. Her heart racing, she turned and wasted no time getting out of there.



    \/
    /\




    “Kyrie...what's wrong?”

    The girl looked up, her eyes glazed over. “Mmm? Nothing, nothing...”

    The teenage boy sighed, sitting back against the a tall tree. He ran his hand through his short black hair, yawning. The pair were sitting atop a tall ledge, staring down at the village below them. Out above stretched an infinite expanse of twinkling stars, pinpricks of light in the great night sky. Farther out, beyond the comparatively narrow stretch of land the village was built on, the high peaks of mountains reached out as far as the eye could see. Their bases were shrouded in low lying mist, obscuring the ground. It seemed as though they were on top of the world, which wasn't far off.

    “What is it? I heard a body was found earlier...did you see it?”

    Kyrie shrugged, lying back in the teenager's arms. “Yeah, I did. It wasn't a body though...it was very much alive.”

    The boy frowned. “Alive? What do you mean?”

    She sighed. “It was alive, but...I don't know. He had been disfigured, burnt and everything. That was bad enough, but as I was leaving...he looked at me. I can't explain it, but I felt like he knew me or something...”

    He blinked. “I don't know what to say.”

    “You don't have to,” said the girl. “Don't worry, I'm not afraid or anything. I can take care of myself. It's just...why do I feel like I know him?”

    “Maybe you do?” offered the teenager. “Maybe he got on the bad side of a rogue soldier or something? Or...he pissed off the Governor? He could have been someone you've seen before.”

    “Maybe,” said Kyrie, cringing at the thought of someone she knew ending up with such a horrible fate. “You know what he reminds me of? An Elite. Those bastards wear masks, but they just look like that guy underneath, I know it. Shut up, Magnus.” she added as the boy snickered.

    “Oh come off of it,” he chuckled. “The Elite aren't evil, they're just...elite.”

    The girl sighed. “Just like you to believe whatever bullshit the Governor tells us. Honestly, do you think I'm going to be around to set you straight always?”

    Magnus smiled. “That's the plan, isn't it?”

    Kyrie pushed herself deeper into the teenager's arms. “Yeah it is.” she whispered.



    \/
    /\





    “I'm tellin' you guys! It was those Council guys, they caught one of us and tortured him!”

    “Shut the hell up, that's not how it happened at all. The guy just appeared in the middle of the street, didn't he? If that's the case, I would be worrying how they could do that.”

    “Eh, I don't so much care how it happened. Who was he anyway? Hey, Kyrie! You been awful quiet, you were there weren't you?”

    The girl looked up. She was propped up in one of the bunks, halfheartedly listening to the chatter around her. At least twelve boys, all in their mid-teens, were sitting or standing around her. She had decided to come back with Magnus to his barracks, although technically it was against the rules. No one really cared, though. What teenagers did at night certainly didn't concern anyone. “Yeah, I was there. In fact, I think that guy was an Elite.”

    “Oh come off it!” exclaimed Magnus, who was sitting in a bunk opposite her. “The Elites are cool, they're just better than the run-of-the mill soldiers.”

    “I dunno, though,” offered one particularly large boy who sat on the floor in front of Kyrie. “Them guys...they ain't right.”

    Several of the boys spoke up then, all coming up with wildly varying ideas about the Elites. The girl tuned them all out, annoyed that no one would listen to her.

    She quietly reached toward her loose belt, fingering her straight blade knife. Normally she didn't keep it on her, but...it made her feel a bit safer, especially now.

    “I wonder,” she spoke up after a moment. “What the Governor is going to do with him? They almost seemed like they knew each other...too bad I couldn't hear the entire conversation...”

    With a loud bang, the only door to the barracks was smashed down. Nearly everyone jumped as a pair of armor clad Elite walked in.

    “Shit!” exclaimed Magnus, trying to leap to his feet. “What was that?”

    “Mind your tongue.” growled a deep voice from outside. Kyrie's eyes snapped to the doorway. That voice...

    The ominous sound of footsteps echoed inside the door as a cloaked figure entered. His head was covered by a hood, but beneath it she noticed his face had been bandaged entirely over. A black gloved hand reached down to his a long sheath hanging from his belt, pulling out a long black blade.

    “Our King has conveyed upon me his will, and I shall be honored to do as he wishes. All of you are about to be bestowed with His high honor.”

    Silence filled the room.

    “Come, all of you. You will all now have the great privilege of assisting the Horde.”

    “What? No, I don't want to! What's going on?” exclaimed the large boy, his eyes wide with fear.

    The figure laughed harshly. “You're coming. All of you. Let me warn you, I do not tolerate disobedience.”

    Immediately the pair of Elite walked toward the tightly knit group, gesturing them toward the door with their own swords. Magnus stood up, thinking fast.

    “What about Kyrie? She's just a girl, surely you don't want her as well?”

    The figure turned to the teenage boy. “She will do as well. Move out.”



    \/
    /\




    The moonlit horizon shifted ever so slightly. Slowly, steadily, a shadow began to mar the bare pass, creeping over the slight hill. It grew larger and larger, expanding with every passing second. A silent whisper of wind swept over the sleeping village.

    The traveler looked down at his own shadow in the moonlight. He reached a hand down to pull his gray traveling cloak tighter to his body before looking up. There it sat, his destination.

    He continued on his path, walking down the slight slope leading into the village. How much it had changed...had it been that long ago that it was the center of the rebellion to take down the Council? The place was more densely populated that it was before, granted, but all in it was a shell of it's former glory.

    His gray eyes roved over the many tightly packed buildings. What had they been doing for all this time since the fall? Something constructive, he hoped. Knowing his host, that was a given.

    It was peaceful up here, he had to admit. That was probably the reason this was chosen as the base in the first place, to be as remote as possible. You couldn't get any more remote than in the middle of the Blackthorn mountains inside the Barrier, that was for sure.

    The narrow path between the buildings widened into an intersection with another path, leading toward the edge of the cliff on his right and the solid rock of the mountain on his left. The traveler continued straight ahead silently.

    It wasn't the ideal place admittedly, but he felt that this would be a good place to take a break for a while. It had been decades, easily, since he had any peace from the web of lies and deception under the Overlord. He knew time was short for him to make a decision on what to do next, but he needed shelter to consider in peace.

    He sighed, coming to a stop. The densely packed buildings all gave way to a wide, rough stone path. The bright moon illuminated his destination, a great castle built into the side of the large cliff. The entrance was only a short distance away, carved into the base of rock. A roughly chiseled skull glared at him, the eyes made of black stone. The man chuckled. What taste.

    Two guards, dressed in full black armor with loosely held shields in their hands, flanked the skull's mouth. Both looked at the traveler in confusion as he approached them.

    “Evening, gentlemen.”

    “Hey, who the hell are you?” asked one of the guards, surprised.

    “Marvolo Dusek.” the traveler said curtly.

    The guard looked to his counterpart, frowning. The other man shrugged, turning to the newcomer. “And...who the hell are you?”

    The traveler chuckled. “I'm here to see the King.”



    \/
    /\




    “Move your lazy asses! And what the hell is a girl doing here?”

    An armor clad guard shrugged. “I don't know sir. Lord Hunter brought her in.”

    A tall man dressed in embellished silver armor scowled. “Whatever, I guess.”

    Kyrie looked away hastily as the tall man looked back at her. Her heart was pounding wildly, so much so she was surprised that no one could hear it. Her brown eyes glanced around nervously. She and the rest of the dozen or so boys were lined up against a thick stone wall in a narrow hall with the two Elites on each end and the two men standing in front of them. They were deep inside the castle fortress embedded in the cliff, but as soon as they entered guards pushed them along through corridor after corridor. A row of doors lined the other side of the hall, made of solid concrete. Not something she wanted to break out of.

    She closed her eyes, trying to calm herself. What would they want with her? The man said himself, what was a girl doing here? For once she didn't mind standing out from all the guys.

    The teenager looked to her right side to the grim face of Magnus. He quietly reached down and squeezed her hand. “It'll be okay.” he whispered.

    Her heart skipped a beat. How could she be thinking of only herself? Whatever was going to happen, she knew it wouldn't be good. Were they going to be quietly slaughtered? That didn't make sense, they were all soldiers in-training. With the exception of her anyway, even though she could fight better than most of them anyway. Maybe...maybe they were going to become Elites? The thought sent a shiver down her spine.

    She looked over at the Elite on the left of her. He stood completely still, staring at the line of boys. Her eyes found his masked face, completely void of visible features. Was that what was going to happen to them? Were they going to flatten their faces?

    Her fist clinched around Magnus's hand. There was no way that she was going to disappear like everyone else, never to be seen or heard from again. To become a nameless, faceless solider...no. Not going to happen.

    She stepped backward against the wall, masking the movement of her left hand toward her belt. She grabbed her knife easily, casting her eyes toward the left Elite. Yes...that would be the best way out. Looking up, she saw the two men now talking over a clipboard and a large stack of paper. There was no time to waste, they had to get out now.

    As quietly as she could, she nudged Magnus. He frowned, looking up. “Now.” she mouthed, her eyes tilting slightly to the left guard.

    Without waiting for him to say anything, she turned and made a dash toward the guard. In a single deft movement, she withdrew her long knife and bared down. In a flash, the Elite dropped to one knee and slid to catch her by the ankles. The teenager jumped, swinging down with her blade. It caught the arm of the man, who fell backward slightly.

    With blinding speed, the Elite leapt back to his feet and jumped at the girl, grabbing her by the throat and slamming her powerfully against the wall. Stars flashed in front of her vision as fetid breath washed over her face.

    Laughter echoed off the stone walls. “Now that's what I'm talking about! The girl has spunk, I like her!”

    Kyrie blinked, looking back. Her vision was still slightly blurred, yet it was hard to miss the large man approaching her. The Elite backed off her throat and stepped back, but it was clear that he wouldn't take kindly to another escape attempt.

    “You know what's really sad?” chuckled the man, brushing some non-existant dirt off of his embellished armor. “If some of you, any of you, would have jumped at the opportunity to escape and help her out, this young lady here as well as yourselves might have been out of here. But no...you all froze like cowards,”

    Silence fell in the small stone hall. The man walked in front of the girl, grinning. “I'd have to say she's the only one out of you with balls, and that's saying something isn't it?” His eyes rolled up and down her figure, an eyebrow raised. He shrugged and turned to the petrified boys.

    “Well, listen up. As much as I don't want to do this, especially for you bunch of cowards, it's going to be done. You all are about to have the great honor of become Elite soldiers for the Horde,” the man paused, making eye contact with each of the boys before continuing. “Lord Hunter will be with you all soon to...prepare you. May the Overlord watch over your souls.”

    With that, the Elite who had stopped her grabbed the teenage girl, pushing her toward the last in the line of cells. She chanced a quick glance back to see Magnus, but to her surprise the spot where he had been standing beside her was empty. The man opened the door, pushing her roughly inside. She turned quickly, but with a resounding slam the door was closed in her face.



    \/
    /\




    The traveler's gray eyes roved over the great stone hall. It had been roughly hewn out of the sheer rock, reaching a considerable distance in height. At least a dozen wooden benches were set out, lining the walls. A faded red rug ran the distance from the entrance to the back of the hall, where a small group of men stood.

    In the center, sitting on an unembellished stone throne was a hunched over figure, dressed in dark robes. It remained perfectly still, a long hood over his face. Standing in front was a heavily bandaged man, wrapped almost entirely in beige wrappings. A loose fitting pair of gray pants hung loosely from his waist.

    On either side of the man stood two soldiers, similar to the ones who had allowed him to enter. Dusek cleared his throat, taking a step forward.

    “Ah...Dusek. Please come in...it has been so long. Guards, some privacy please...”

    The traveler nodded slightly, watching as the soldiers immediately nodded and turned to leave the room. Once they were gone, he stepped forward, looking up at the King. The bandaged man turned to him, seemingly staring at him. Dusek noted his face was covered entirely, yet he seemed to know exactly where he was.

    “Dusek, it is good to see you. Wait a moment and listen to this, you might find it interesting.” whispered the hunched over figure without so much as flinching. “Continue, Hunter.”

    “Ah...yes,” growled Hunter. “The mission was largely a success. The Whitney substation was severely damaged, and all of the staff were killed. It will be down for a minimum of two weeks by my estimation, so the operation can go forward,”

    The injured man paused, as if waiting for the King to speak. When he didn't, the man continued. “I also fought with Duncan McNeil, the incarnate of Time. It seems he was alerted by the Council as soon as they realized I had control of the substation. I fought with him when he tried to intervene,”

    The traveler blinked.

    “And he isn't a threat. Compared to...what I anticipated, he wasn't as powerful as I thought. He is clearly just getting a grip on his powers. If it was just him, there wouldn't have been a problem. There were two others with him, a man and a woman. The man was...frankly nothing special at all. The woman though...she was at least as good as McNeil. She wielded a powerful flaming broadsword that just exuded power. I do not know where it came from, but with it she was fiercesome.

    “Between the pair of them, I got double-teamed and pushed into a compromising position. As my job was already done, instead of pressing the issue with any...more powerful moves, I chose to leave,”

    Hunter paused once again, as if waiting for someone to say something. Yet again, no one spoke a word.

    “All does appear ready for the invasion, however. Almost all of our preparations are complete, and now that the Barrier fail-safe has been disabled everything is set. As we speak, the last batch of the recruits have been put into the chambers for the Ritual. Even if we get poor results, our force of Elites still stands at an acceptable level for the plan.”

    “Ritual? I assume it's some sort of sensory deprivation ritual?” asked Dusek quietly.

    Hunter paused, turning slowly to face the man. “That is none of your concern.”

    “Tell him, Hunter,” said the King softly. “He is about to join our ranks, so there is no need to keep secrets.”

    The injured man hesitated. “...Fine. It is the main weapon of the Horde. It involves the systematic destruction of each of the five senses,”

    “Sight,” Hollow eye sockets.

    “Smell,” Narrow slits for nostrils.

    “Taste,” A stump of a tongue.

    “Hearing,” Shallow indentations for ears.

    “Touch,” Melted, scarred skin.

    Silence fell over the stone hall. The traveler remained still for a moment before speaking up. “And...what does this accomplish?”

    Hunter stepped backward, his face falling into shadow. “Your mind...it is no longer burdened with extraneous information. With...some help, it can be coaxed into unlocking your sixth sense. As I'm sure you know, energy is everything. The manipulation of energy in all it's forms has long been something only people with...abilities such as yours can control. What no one has ever realized, however, is that the ability to do so is extremely common. Nearly all Pokémon could manipulate energy at will, which is how they were able to wield such logic-defying attacks.

    “The truth is, almost all people can do the same. The problem is, the mind doesn't have the resources to collect and use the energy, much less the willpower to control it. That is where the Ritual comes in. On our...participants, I perform the ritual. With a bit of work, they too can have the same abilities that I wield.”

    Dusek remained stone-faced. “...My question is...how is someone expected to survive?”

    Hunter remained silent. With a slight nod to the King, he turned to leave. Before reaching the door he paused.

    “Very few do. Welcome to the Horde, Dusek.”



    \/
    /\



    “Please, no! Back off! NO! NO! PLEASE NO!”

    Kyrie slid back against the wall, her eyes wide open. Horrible, wretched screams exploded out in the silence. The girl cringed, pressing her hands over her ears. There was no way...they were torturing him. Was that what they were going to do to all of them?

    Slowly, the screams faded away into silence. A sickly squelching sound broke the silence, followed by a soft splatter.

    Her mouth fell open. She looked down at her violently shaking form, the shattering of her teeth ringing in her ears. Her mind was blank, it couldn't be happening. Vague sounds of tearing and breaking overcame her mind.

    It couldn't be.

    “Let me out of here!”

    It wasn't happening.

    “What are you bastards doing? Get us the fuck out of here!”

    Ripping, shredding, it is time.

    “LET ME OUT!”

    Roaring flames, ready to consume flesh.

    “WHAT ARE YOU DOING? GET AWAY FROM ME, BACK OFF!”

    The fiends of hell grow near.

    “No, get away from me! No! NO! NOOOOO!”

    Hide, hide little girl, we will find you

    Release your grip without a sound

    The time for (life) death is here

    Let us devour your body and (free) your mind

    Rivers of (your) blood

    Mountains of (your) flesh

    Skies stained by (your) evil

    Wind tainted by (your) poison

    The (ETERNAL) night is here


    Blood red skies cast a murderous glow over the pure black tower. The pale ash-covered earth reached out as far as the eye could see, far out into the bloodied horizon. The acrid smell of death rolled up from the infinite expanses of destruction.

    On the very top of the highest tower, Kyrie gazed down at the end of the world.

    “Welcome to Hell.”

    The wan faced teenager turned slowly away from the carnage, eyes not meeting the monster that stood behind her. “...It is almost over, isn't it?”

    “Yes, it is. The world has but months left. What you see here...it is what will happen if nothing is stopped, nothing changes.”

    “...I see.”

    “You are very special, you know that don't you?”

    “...What is going to happen to everyone?” whispered the girl.

    “The loving arms of Death will take them. There is nothing that can be done about your friends, however. The Overlord and Phoenix are warring as we speak and it must be stopped. If not...what you see before you will become a reality.”

    Her tired brown eyes gazed once more out at the immense field of ash. “What can I do?”

    “You have the ability to mend this, to fix it all. Come to me.”

    The teenager complied, turning slowly. A wraith of shadow hovered slightly off the ground, it's bright blue eyes looking down at her, entirely emotionless. Wrapped around it's head was a splash of blood red color, almost disappearing into the scarlet sky behind it.

    “Closer.”

    Kyrie hesitated for a moment, then stepped forward. The wraith extended two clawed hands, resting them on her shoulders.

    “I, the Lord of Nightmares, wish you luck my daughter. Accept a gift so that you may be able to prevent the end of days,”

    Shadow immediately obscured her vision.

    “May the Zenith see the error of his ways.”

    With a soft whisper, Hell melted away.








    \/
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    Last edited by duncan; 2nd February 2009 at 5:22 AM.

  2. #2
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    First post!

    ...Wow...I can't believe this. This gave so much insight into the events happening in the series now. But, I think my favorite part is that you introduced a new heroine. Fics lack good heroines these days and I think Kyrie is going to turn out to be as awesome as Venus.

    Good job! 10/10. Can't wait for part two!

  3. #3
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    Kyrie. For some reason I get the song Kayleigh by Marillion whenever I read the name, except replace Kayleigh with Kyrie if you catch my drift.

    Anyway, damn you. The cliffhanger was annoyingly cool, and is clear testament to your award.

    Expansion on Hunter = win. He's always been a cool guy and now we know the basis of his power, it's fun to see how Duncan, and indeed our new friend Kyrie can beat his *** and all his wierd zombie friends.

    Eagerly awaits next part.
    Skogsrĺ

    Gardenia never liked the Old Chateau, but what if the Old Chateau liked her?

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  4. #4
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    sn[font=Verdana]ickered.
    Might want to fix that

    “Hey, who the hell are you?” asked one of the guards, surprised.

    “Marvolo Dusek.” the traveler said curtly.

    The guard looked to his counterpart, frowning. The other man shrugged, turning to the newcomer. “And...who the hell are you?”
    This confused me a little, as they already asked who he was.


    Other than that, this was superb. Good description. Good ending. Very dark, evil and sinister. Part two will be greatly anticipated.

  5. #5
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    chosen_one386:

    I hoped it would, thanks. I'm sure everyone has been wondering what exactly I was on about with Hunter, but hopefully this explains it.

    And Kyrie is going to be a valuable part of the TEN storyline from here on out. Whoops, spoilers. XD I'm glad you enjoyed, hopefully you'll like part two as much.

    Diddy:

    It was funny, I was searching around for a name for her when I looked down at iTunes at the song Kyrie Eleison. It sounded like a great name to me, so I went for it.

    Oh yeah, this is only just beginning. I have to say part two will be considerably longer than this (which was right at 14 pages). It was important for me to end it on that cliffhanger, though. Believe me, the title isn't just for show. Thanks, glad you enjoyed.

    #Chimecho#:

    Ah yeah, I'll go fix that. I'm not entirely sure why the forum censors that word, to be entirely honest.

    As for the second, it's meant like that. The guard heard his name, but said it again because it didn't mean anything. They aren't exactly bright.

    Thanks so much, it means a lot.

  6. #6
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    great chapter duncan
    and quite frankly i'm surpprised-i mean how far can people go to get power,it's a false promise anyway,eventually enough people turn on you and even with that power 1 hit is all it takes, 1 measely hit and it's all over
    if there is anything i know about power it is that without a head it's useless,if you know what it means
    but enough about that about. the ritual is what is really on my mind, something that horrible that so few survive it is horrible, i wonder how you think these things
    and the vision, if hunter is strong enough to make a vision like that and now that he is paired with dusek and the overlord, i am starting to wonder how ho-ho and arceus can make a plan to defeat them
    and a mention of pokemon finally, i think they might have a chance of coming back-i'd love to see a duncan and blaziken ending
    and this:
    “You know what's really sad?” chuckled the man, brushing some non-existant dirt off of his embellished armor. “If some of you, any of you, would have jumped at the opportunity to escape and help her out, this young lady here as well as yourselves might have been out of here. But no...you all froze like cowards,”

    Silence fell in the small stone hall. The man walked in front of the girl, grinning. “I'd have to say she's the only one out of you with balls, and that's saying something isn't it?” His eyes rolled up and down her figure, an eyebrow raised. He shrugged and turned to the petrified boys.
    pure genious XD
    well i gotta go, so keep up the good work, i can't wait for the next chapter of eternal night
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    I say, like Diddy, no wonder you got Most Suspenseful Fic!

    I say, interesting take on the Elite. I assume they'll be a vital part in TEN later on? Seriously, I was like "damn!" after finding out the Horde's plan and such, with the mention of Pokemon attacks. :O

    Another thing is of course Hunter. So that's how he is what he is in TEN (if that makes sense...). *scratches chin*

    Of course, last thing is Kyrie seems like a very interesting character and I'm left wondering what's going on at the end (a good thing though!).

    A couple things, though. There was one instance where you repeated a description, but I can't find it at the moment (should have marked it or something before). >.> If I do manage to find it, I'll let you know which part I mean. ^^;

    Another thing is this part:

    Ripping, shredding, it is time.

    “LET ME OUT!”

    Roaring flames, ready to consume flesh.

    “WHAT ARE YOU DOING? GET AWAY FROM ME, BACK OFF!”

    The fiends of hell grow near.

    “No, get away from me! No! NO! NOOOOO!”

    Hide, hide little girl, we will find you

    Release your grip without a sound

    The time for (life) death is here

    Let us devour your body and (free) your mind

    Rivers of (your) blood

    Mountains of (your) flesh

    Skies stained by (your) evil

    Wind tainted by (your) poison

    The (ETERNAL) night is here
    I remember the first draft you had it a bit too much like Luphind's writing style. I say you actually did better in making it your own, but still a bit of a Lu vibe here. As much as his style is very poetic and stuff, it's hard to understand at times (sorry Lu if you're reading this ^^; ). IMO part of writing is not just making the words stand out but also making the events be written as clear and simple as possible. Like I said, sometimes a very beautiful writing style won't mean anything if you don't get the heck what is happening. Again, it's fine to be inspired by someone else's writing style, but also think about how you want to tell the story so that everyone can understand.

    Other than that, can't wait for part two!


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    Master of All:

    Good point, you are right. Power certainly isn't everything.

    And as for where I got this idea...it was actually quite a long time ago. It was originally for something else, but when I got around to creating Hunter I wanted an idea that wasn't connected to the Legendaries like most everyone else.

    Thanks, I'm glad you enjoyed.

    Bay:

    XD I guess.

    ...I really want to answer that, but I don't want to spoil the ending (I am seriously not kidding when I say this has only just begun). I'll just say the Horde aren't going anywhere.

    As for that end...all I can say is pay careful attention to the wraith (although it shouldn't be that difficult, I shouldn't think) and exactly what he says. That's an extremely important scene in more ways than one.

    Ah...I hear you. That scene was meant to be totally chaotic, just insane (and apocalyptic) imagery and everything.

    Anyway, thanks for the review.

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    For the wraith, I'm thinking Darkrai.

    But that was just... horrific. Especially the 'Ritual'. I seriously felt so horrified when I read what it actually was, just how terrible it is.

    Congratulations, you just managed to utterly horrify me. If that was the intention, it ws done extremely well.

    Magna of Miracles!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Digidramon View Post
    For the wraith, I'm thinking Darkrai.

    But that was just... horrific. Especially the 'Ritual'. I seriously felt so horrified when I read what it actually was, just how terrible it is.

    Congratulations, you just managed to utterly horrify me. If that was the intention, it ws done extremely well.
    ooh, yes! i would love it if dark rai was invlovled in, "the Ritual". oh, and are going to work mewtwo into the fic? id like to know a more midevil story for him.
    Chapter Four, Touching down globally!

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  11. #11
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    Digidramon:

    I utterly horrified you? XD Well, yes it was largely what I was going for (although it was more like I wanted to creep everyone out...).

    And yes; the wraith is Darkrai.

    flameswy:

    Darkrai actually has no part in the Ritual. His only goal is to try to stop the upcoming war through Kyrie. He wouldn't bother with something so small, although he is the Lord of Nightmares.

    As for Mewtwo, he has been featured (admittedly it was poor) back in the second saga of Blazing Dreams, Legends of Sinnoh. Without spoiling that particular story (if you wish to read it) I can say that no, Mewtwo won't have any part in BD.

  12. #12
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    An average Luphinid review consists of several quotes and (in)appropriate reactions to the quotes.

    With a momentary flash of light, it was easily apparent that it was nothing more than a small mountain lake, it's surface scarred and pitted by the fury of the rain.
    'its'.

    In a single deft movement, she withdrew her long knife and bared down.
    I think you're referring to the verb 'bear down', as in approaching a target, in which case it would convert to 'bore down'. I don't think Kyrie has much mind to strip at this stressful juncture of life.

    Hunter stepped backward, his face falling into shadow. “Your mind...it is no longer burdened with extraneous information. With...some help, it can be coaxed into unlocking your sixth sense.
    Yes! My kind of people. I always say, we should all consider why the greatest creators are deprived of at least one sense organ. Beethoven, Milton, Homer... *gradually alienates everyone reading this thread*

    Rivers of (your) blood

    Mountains of (your) flesh

    Skies stained by (your) evil

    Wind tainted by (your) poison

    The (ETERNAL) night is here
    Oh. I thought they were on to something until they fell back into the malicious rivers-of-blood routine. I guess they're not my kind of people. On the other hand, the words are most marvellous. You have mastered the technique of artfully devastating the sentiments of the morally sensitive.

    Regarding Bay's comments on this: while I do agree that my writing style is definitely not something you should be resembling, I thought the immediate sense of that sequence was clear enough. It was just a little muddled how Kyrie got ad witnessing the Ritual to a vision of Darkrai our Father (who art in Hell). Am I right in saying that she did indeed go through the Ritual, and the sixth sense that was stimulated by the lack of distractions allowed her this sight?

    Why were those quite unhardened youths chosen for such an important role as an Elite? ad the looks of it Hunter was intending to merely break into the dormitories and take whatever he found; such a quick-and-dirty recruiting technique seems to me an act of emergency or desperation. Of course, it could be a calm measure: milking their potential forces for all they're worth, perhaps, now that Times are Nearing, or choosing them as a natural and not at all premature part of the recruitment process.

    I thought you'd gotten her name ad the Kyrie. [I wonder how that distressed furor of voices (according to Mozart, at any rate) would go along with the Ritual scene. I'm seeing very good things.] Which word, by the way, means 'Lord' in Latin. That is, distributor of bread (among the subjects). Whatever that signifies.

    ('Ad' = 'from'.) SPPF is being unprintable.

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    Luphinid Silnaek:

    Thanks for the review. A lot has happened the past couple of weeks, but I can get to that later.

    Both of those corrections are (of course) right; I'll go fix them now.

    Oh. I thought they were on to something until they fell back into the malicious rivers-of-blood routine. I guess they're not my kind of people. On the other hand, the words are most marvellous. You have mastered the technique of artfully devastating the sentiments of the morally sensitive.
    Ah yeah, that scene took a very long time. I believe I did about six different versions before finally settling on that one. Thanks.

    I suppose when I decided to do a hectic, nightmarish scene I subconsciously thought of Aftershock there. I apologize for that. As for what happened to Kyrie...there's no harm in telling. No, she didn't go through the Ritual at all. Once she started hearing it happening to the others, she was overcome by a nightmare. From there Darkrai took her in the dream-like state and brought her to the hell tower. It might sound random, but there's an explanation. Sorry about the confusion.

    The reason Hunter grabbed all of the boys was a mixture of the two. Under normal circumstances they would have trained them all up more, prepared them better. As it is almost time to attack, and seeing as they're going to be utterly useless if they aren't Elites, he really had nothing to lose.

    Yes, that's where I got the name. Nice catch, yes the name has some meaning behind it. You'll all see eventually. Again, thank you for the review (and dealing with SPPf to finish it).

    As some of you know, I've been having some computer problems the past week. I think it's the fan, but at any rate it's been randomly shutting off. The idea of losing any work at all has kept me from writing, so I haven't been able to get anywhere near as much as I wanted done. Assuming I find a way to fix it soon, I'd still say the next part is at the very least a week away, most likely more. Sorry guys.

    One last quick note, I want to thank everyone who has gone to check the site out. I put up a Wiki about a week ago, which has been great fun so far (although not all that productive). More projects are on the way, so look out for them.

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    I apologize for the massive wait, guys. It's a long story (which has an awful lot to do with a broken computer), but never mind that now. Part Two is all done. Before I begin, just a couple of small things I should mention.

    For one, this is long. Part Two is over 25 pages, so be sure to take care of anything that needs to be done and sit back and enjoy.

    Secondly, in a first for me there is an alternate ending of this. It's available over at the Blazing Dreams site, along with all sorts of other information. I'd highly recommend taking a look around if you check it out, I've been working hard to get some good content up there for you all to enjoy.

    Anyway, a quick warning. There is quite a bit of language in this, as well as a good bit of violence and disturbing imagery (although nothing quite as bad as the Ritual) as well.

    I'm probably forgetting something (and undoubtedly there will be plenty of typos, etc. that I missed), but whatever. Enjoy.



    |blazing dreams|
    |apocalypse rising|

    \part two/

    |the eternal night|


    \/
    /\



    this fiction is rated pg-13
    for profanity, violence and disturbing imagery
    reader discretion is advised






    A shallow, unsteady breath broke the silence.

    There was nothing to be done.

    Almond eyes snapped open, alive with fear.

    They are all dead.

    Deathly pale arms trembled, fingers twitching.

    “Everyone...”

    The soft sound of footsteps echoed louder and louder, accompanied by quiet voices. The teenage girl took a deep breath, blinking away tears. She lifted her head off of the hard concrete floor, looking around dully. Shadows moved outside the door of her cell, barely visible through the iron bars.

    She shook her head, pushing herself into a sitting position against the cold wall. “This is it.” Her voice sounded hoarse, her throat nearly too dry to speak.

    “-Results weren't at all what we were hoping for, I know, but it shouldn't be an issue.”

    Kyrie closed her eyes, trying to block out the words being spoken just outside her cell door.

    “It is an issue, we need as much strength as we can muster. Under normal circumstances we would have waited several more years and probably got twice the number. One...I had planned on at least three.” a deep, growling voice spoke.

    “There's one more, let's just finish up.” muttered the other voice.

    With a soft click, the door opened. Two men entered, one pulling a wheeled cart with a large cauldron on it. She blinked, squinting at the pair. One was easily recognizable as the injured man from earlier. The other didn't look familiar, but it was difficult to see with her swollen eyes. The vague outline of a white lab coat was all she could make out.

    “...What is this, Hunter?”

    Hunter paused. “I did not mean for her to undergo the Ritual as well...why is she here?”

    The other man shrugged. “I've got no idea, I didn't bring her in.”

    “What did you do to them?” whispered Kyrie, blinking away tears.

    The injured man chuckled. “Oh, I'm sure you have a pretty good guess by now. What's it been, four hours? All those little maggots were screaming the entire time, my goddamn head is hurting...”

    The man in the lab coat laughed. “I'm sure it is. So what do you want to do with this one? We could try the Ritual, I suppose...it couldn't hurt...”

    “No...I don't think it would work,” The hollow eye sockets leveled straight at her, sending a chill down her spine. “I'll save her for later...just keep her here. Let her enjoy the memory of each and every one of her friends dying a long, painful death...”

    With an ominous chuckle, the door closed. The girl took a deep breath, lying back down on the stone floor with a quiet sob.



    \/
    /\



    The warm glow of the fire brightened up the dreary room nicely, he thought. The man sat back in his thick wooden chair, the orange glow reflected in his exhausted eyes. How long it had been since he had been able to truly relax...the pressures of the world off his shoulders.

    Dusek reached down to the desk that sat against the wall, picking up a crystal goblet filled with red wine. He raised it to his mouth, swirling it gently. With a contented sigh, he took a sip.

    On the whole of it, this certainly seemed nice enough for him to have some peace. He gazed around at the room. It wasn't very large or posh by standards he once had, but it was more than enough. As he was a good ways into the mountain, the walls were a solid reddish rock. It seemed unusual for the rock to be a color like that being so high up, but who was he to question the workings of nature?

    A roughly hewn fireplace sat at the back of the room, a roaring fire alive inside it. Through a small door off to the side of it sat a small but adequate bathroom, and that was just about it. A small bunk was set against the wall with a small end table.

    None of this was as important as just how quiet it was. The thick stone walls absorbed nearly all sound from the outside, which was excellent.

    He took another small sip of the rich red wine. Although...he was in an entirely new place, only moderately sure of the safety assured to him by an old ally. Perhaps it was a bit too quiet?

    The man shook his head. Caution could be abandoned for a short while, couldn't it? Even if the Overlord found out he was here, there was no way to get to him. Duncan had been taken out of action, who else could stand even a chance of retrieving him? The only person who could remotely challenge him was deep undercover in the Council, and the Overlord obviously valued that position above settling a grudge. He chuckled. Maybe it was more than just a grudge.

    The Council...what was he going to do? The man sighed, setting his goblet on the desk and turning back to the fire. It was an impossible choice. Literally no one knew more about the consequences of which side won than he. The question was...what was the end game that he wanted?

    It was clear that he was no longer the revenge fueled, loss driven person he had been. Nor was he the lighthearted, naďve teenager who could only see right and wrong, not the full picture. The loyal henchman of the Overlord...not anymore. He was his own person.

    In his hands...he had the power to alter the final outcome. The single events, trivial battles between now and then didn't matter. In the end, it would come down to the Phoenix and the Overlord, in some way. Only one could prevail.

    If only he knew which he wanted.

    Dusek sat back in his seat, wringing his hands. Here he was, his first moments of peace in years, and the first thing he does is start thinking about the end game.

    The immediate problem, however, was the question of whether he could stay here at all. It would be a lie to say that he was not feeling unsettled about his new home. The man cast his mind back to the conversation he had had only a few short hours ago.

    The door slammed shut, the noise echoing around the hall loudly.

    “A bit of a temper, I should think.”

    The King sighed, remaining still. “Yes...Hunter has a temper. He thinks you are coming here to replace him. I know that certainly is not the case, my old friend...but what does bring you here?”

    Dusek paused, the slight smile on his face sliding away. “...I'm merely looking for what we all seek, in the end.”

    “Ah,” said the King softly. “Peace...yes, I understand. Surely that is not your only motive for making the long journey here, though? Last I heard you were still under the Overlord inside the Night...”

    “You probably know better than anyone that peace is a powerful motive.”

    The figure chuckled. “Still good at deflecting words, I see...very well. For you, my old friend, you are welcome to stay as long as you like. You know, however, that I cannot allow anyone or anything to pose a threat to what I have worked so hard for...”

    “Of course I do. Believe me, if anyone had traced me here I would be the first to leave. You have my word.”

    “That's all I need,” said the King. “Welcome, Dusek. I already have a room prepared for you that you should find well. Stay as long as you like, but you must come see my army tomorrow...it is truly a sight to behold...”


    Dusek sat back, staring into the fire. Brooding on it wouldn't get him anywhere. Perhaps a walk would help clear his head?



    \/
    /\



    “Kyrie?”

    Almond eyes snapped open. She sat up quickly, staring at the door. “Who...who's there?”

    The door eased open quietly, a black haired head looking in. “Kyrie!”

    She let out a sigh of relief. “Magnus...”

    The teenager nodded, slipping into the door and pushing it closed. “Are you okay?”

    Kyrie nodded, taking a deep breath. “I...yeah.”

    Magnus approached, sitting down beside her. “What the hell is going on here? Is everyone else in the other cells? What did they end up doing to everyone?”

    She began to speak up, but the words caught in her throat. “It's...too late. Magnus, we have to get out of here. How did you escape? I was afraid that you had...”

    Magnus reached out and pulled her into a strong hug. “Don't worry, we're both fine. First thing we need to do though, is get out of here,” He looked her straight in the eye. “I think I found a way out, but everyone is going to have to be quiet. Can you fight?”

    “There's no one left.”

    “What?” he frowned.

    “There...there is no one left...” she whispered. “They killed them all...some sick fuck thing called the ritual. I heard the guy say only one had survived...they killed them all.”

    Magnus slid backward, his eyes wide. “No...why would they do that, Kyrie? It's okay, this has been rough. They're all probably going crazy right now, I bet.”

    Kyrie grabbed his shoulders firmly, turning him directly facing her, brown eyes locked onto his dark ones. “There is no one left.”

    Silence rushed into the small cell. Magnus fell back, his mouth slightly agape. The girl wiped her eyes, standing up. “Come on, you are right. There will be time...later. For now, we have to get the hell out of here. You have a way?”

    The boy blinked, nodding halfheartedly. “Yeah...yeah.”

    Kyrie kneeled down in front of him, grabbing his shoulders and shaking him roughly. “Come on, we have to get out of here now. Snap out of it!”

    He took a breath, shaking his head slightly. “Okay, okay. When I saw you run for it, I wasn't ready. You made it all the way to the end, and that Elite stopped you. The one on my side rushed forward to help, and I saw it was wide open. So...I just ran for it.”

    The shadow of a smile lightened the girl's face. “You left me?”

    “Well...yeah,” muttered Magnus. “You were already caught. So, I made a run for it. No one noticed I was gone, I guess, although the guys probably did as I ran by. I hid in a room for a while near the kitchen. It was busy, though, so I was stuck hiding for a while. It just cleared out a bit ago, and I snuck back here.”

    “Okay okay,” she said. “But you said you found a way out?”

    “Yeah. There are these great big vents in there that all the cooking smoke goes through. I didn't go up there, but I could see light at the very top. If we get there, we're home free.”

    The girl sighed. “An exhaust vent? I thought you actually had a good idea...damn it.”

    Magnus stood up, shrugging. “You got a better plan?”

    “...No.”

    “Then let's go. Just be quiet and follow me, I remember the way.”



    \/
    /\



    Dusek ran a hand along the stone wall curiously. Shrugging, he continued on his path. With only the tools available to them, this must have taken decades.

    He wasn't headed anywhere in particular, just drawing a rough map of the place in his mind. Occasionally he would pass a guard, who would glare at him as he passed. Hunter must be quite well liked among the soldiers, he thought dully.

    He rounded yet another featureless corner, when he stopped abruptly. Something...something was amiss. The man frowned, trying to figure out what was giving him such a foreboding feeling.

    It was coming from a few hundred meters to his left, whatever it was. He took off again, quickening his pace. He clenched his hand in his pocket, allowing his power to flow freely.

    The closer he got, the more he understood. It was a single person, and they were giving off an incredible amount of power. The hair on the back of his neck tingled. The rock was extraordinary stuff to mask the power for as long as it did. Outside in the clear, he probably would have noticed it miles away.

    Dusek paused, staring ahead at where the hall split into two paths. The person was definitely on the left, and walking this way. He blinked, remaining still. Soft footsteps were now audible, and he was surprised to hear more than one set. He did not like this at all.

    Setting a hand on the solid rock to his left, his hand lit up in a vibrant silver aura. He paused, then jumped out around the corner, rushing at the approaching people. In a blur of motion he wound his left hand back, ready to strike.

    A split second later he got a look at who was approaching. It was...two teenagers?

    Skidding to a stop, he frowned. A teenage boy in his mid-teens stood in front of him, a mass of black hair on his head. The boy jumped backward, surprised.

    Behind him stood a girl, roughly the same age. Instantly he knew she was the one who was releasing the waves of power. She was equally as surprised as the boy, with longish brown hair. It was instantly clear that neither was a threat.

    The boy blinked, taking a tough pose. “Look...just get out of our way. All we want to do is escape, we don't want any trouble.”

    “Ah...” smiled Dusek. “Not too fond of the Ritual, I presume? No no...I wouldn't be either.”

    “Who are you?” demanded the girl, stepping up and getting in the man's face. Dusek chuckled. She had lots of power in more ways than one.

    “My name,” he said. “Isn't really important to you. You are extremely lucky to have only run into me, and not one of my altogether more vicious allies. Please, don't let me stand in the way of your escape.”

    The man stepped out of their path, a slight smile on his face. The boy blinked, confused. “Er...thanks.”

    “My pleasure.” nodded Dusek.

    “Well, then come on,” said the girl, smiling at the man. “We won't luck off twice.”

    “No, I really don't think you will.”

    Both the teenagers froze. Dusek looked up lightly at the other end of the corridor.

    “Ah...busted.” he said quietly.

    “You sure as hell are,” growled a cloaked Hunter, wasting no time in blocking the other way out. “What are you doing here, Dusek? And why the hell is that one,” He pointed at the girl. “Pouring out energy? I could sense her half way across the damn mountain!”

    Dusek raised an eyebrow, turning to the still frozen girl. “An interesting question, I'll admit. I myself was curious as well...”

    She blinked, looking up at Dusek intently. It couldn't have been clearer what she was trying to communicate to him.

    When he didn't respond, she smiled slightly and immediately the pair made a dash toward the empty hall behind him. An impossibly short moment later, Dusek's arm was outstretched, blocking the way.

    “No...I don't think so. That would be extremely rude of me, not to assist my hosts. My apologies.” he said with a slight nod.

    The girl's mouth dropped open. “No!” she screamed. “I'm not going back!”

    Hunter chuckled, grabbing both of the teenagers firmly by the shoulders. “I'm afraid you are...” Roughly he shoved the pair to the ground, ignoring their shouts of protest. He turned back to the other man, nodding slightly.

    Dusek's face remained emotionless.



    \/
    /\



    “Ah, Dusek...come in, won't you?”

    The traveler entered the hall. The King still sat in the same position as before, looking down at the rest of the room from his throne. All of the benches that had resided here only a few hours ago were gone, replaced by a large table than nearly ran the entire length of the hall, various maps and diagrams spread all over it.

    Unlike the previous night, the war room was full of various...characters. Some of the men looked like stereotypical generals, while several more were wrapped up entirely in cloaks like Hunter. All heads turned to him the moment he entered, giving the distinct feeling of a spotlight shining in his eyes. He serenely smiled.

    “Come, sit beside Hunter,” said the King, motionless as ever. “I'm glad you decided to join us, I'm sure you will find this quite insightful.”

    Dusek nodded politely, walking forward and taking his empty seat beside Hunter. Ignoring the glares from everyone, he looked up at the King.

    “If everyone would fill him in...”

    One of the generals, a tall, stout looking man, cleared his throat. “Yes. Our King has informed us of your cooperation, of which we are most grateful. Let me fill you in on the plan,

    “The first stage has already begun. Hunter has infiltrated the Council security and destabilized the Barrier. Destroying one substation will have very little effect on the overall health of the Barrier, but if anything is down the Council will disable the midnight fail safe. Meaning, of course,”

    “That the Council is unable to send people into the Eternal Night,” finished Dusek. “How does that help the Horde, however? They are obviously not getting aid from the Overlord, nor anything valuable from the Night.”

    “No, you're correct,” nodded the man. “The Council has nothing really to lose from cutting themselves off from the Night. However, while he was there Hunter was able to exploit a glitch in the network to create a new fail-safe, activated whenever we want. Using this, our next step will be to send a small group of Horde Elites, lead by Hunter, to be an envoy to the Overlord.”

    Dusek frowned. “An envoy to the Overlord?”

    “Yes, that's right,” said Hunter. “I will lead a small group and make contact with the Overlord. Of course, with your help we could do this, but it is not needed. I will inform him of our true plan.”

    “Which is...?”

    The general sat up straight in his chair. “We would tell him to prepare to expand the Eternal Night to Johto.”

    Dusek nodded slowly, sitting back in his chair. “...I see. I assume you have a plan to topple the Council to allow this to happen?”

    “Exactly,” the man said. “Once the Overlord has been informed that the Council will soon fall, we will move onto the second step. We will begin to implant a moderate portion of our Elite into Goldenrod, all positioned to make several key assassinations when we give the word.”

    “A coup?” chuckled Dusek. “You are planning a coup?”

    “Don't be so hasty to judge, my old friend,” said the King quietly. “I am no fool. Of course I know a coup is not nearly enough to topple the Council.”

    “Fair enough, continue.”

    The general nodded. “As I said, the Elites will make several important assassinations. The entire Council will need to be killed, leaving only the head of the Council remaining.”

    “So you know about that,” said Dusek quietly. “Yes, it is not wise to attack the Council head...not at all...”

    “I agree,” said the general with a slight chuckle. “The Elites are precise, the Council members will be systematically wiped out before any alarms can be raised. In addition, we will also kill or capture several key soldiers and people.”

    “Including the incarnate of Time, Duncan McNeil.” added Hunter darkly.

    “This is where you come in, Dusek,” said the King. “Join our fight, come with us to Goldenrod when the time is right. Once the Council is dead, you can help mop up the remains. In return, Duncan is all yours.”

    Dusek fell silent. The entire room seemed to pause, all eyes riveted to the traveler. After a moment, he nodded slightly.

    “Continue.”



    \/
    /\



    “Damn it! That asshole...he could have let us go! I am going to bust out of here and go KILL him!”

    Magnus set a hand on Kyrie's shoulder. “I know, I know. But we really do need to think about getting out of here...we don't have much time before they decide to come back.”

    The girl clenched her fists angrily, looking around at the solid stone walls of the cell they shared. “Fine! How are we going to get out?”

    Magnus frowned. “Let's just see here...” He approached the door, running his hand along the frame carefully. Kyrie rolled her eyes, sitting down.

    “You're not going to get anywhere with that...” she muttered. She took a deep breath, trying to put it all together. Everything had been such a whirlwind...it was all a blur. How long had they been in here? She was fairly sure she had seen some daylight while being forced back to the cell...it felt like it had been much longer than just that night.

    She swallowed. Now that she was finally thinking about it, the events of the day threatened to overwhelm her. There was no more just blocking it all out, though. Something...there had to be something that would help them...

    The wraith. Kyrie blinked. What...what was that? It was a nightmare, a horrible nightmare. She gazed down at her hand, closing it slowly. “It was so real...”

    “Mmm?”

    She looked up at Magnus, who was now rapping on the floor with his knuckles. “Ah...nothing.”

    The boy paused, looking up at her. For a moment, neither seemed to know what to say.

    “Kyrie...I'm sorry.”

    She smiled, standing up and grabbing the boy in a hug. “You,” she whispered. “Have nothing to be sorry about.”

    He gazed down at her, his eyes unfocused. “...I know. I know.”

    Kyrie smiled, kissing him lightly on the lips. “Let's get the hell out of here, hmm?”

    Magnus smiled. “Yeah.”

    The grinding sound of the lock caused both teenagers to jump. He made to turn around, but Kyrie held him firm. “Why?” she whispered.

    With an ominous creaking sound, the door eased open. A soldier, dressed entirely in the thick metal armor, entered.

    “What the hell is this?” he laughed.

    A dark look crossed Magnus's face. “Fuck off.”

    “Strong words from someone who is about to be executed by Lord Hunter.”

    “If you want us,” said Kyrie quietly. “Come on, then.” This prompted more laughter from the soldier.

    “Fine, then,” chuckled the guard. “Suits me fine.”

    He stepped forward toward Magnus, drawing back a punch. The teenager let loose with a powerful kick straight to the man's chest which merely glanced off the armor. A moment later, Magnus was sprawled out on the ground, the side of his face throughly bloodied.

    “Magnus!” exclaimed Kyrie, going to kneel beside him.

    “I don't think so,” chuckled the soldier, grabbing Kyrie harshly by the left arm. “You're mine!”

    Suddenly an eerie whistling sound screamed out in the small cell. Her brown eyes turned black as pitch, her face quickly becoming pale. She reached with her other arm, grabbing the man firmly.

    “No.” she whispered.

    Darkness enveloped everything. She inhaled deeply, letting the tendrils of shadow that were now under her control feel out. It quickly found his head. Without pause, the shadow drove itself into him through his eyes, mouth and nose. The man's terrified mind was quickly overcome, silently screaming in horror.

    Immediately the darkness disappeared and all was exactly as it was only moments before. Kyrie stumbled, collapsing to the floor roughly. Darkness ebbed at the edges of her vision, giving everything a surreal feeling.

    “Kyrie! Are you okay?”

    She blinked, looking up at Magnus. “I...probably. My head is killing me and I can hardly see, though...”

    His concerned face swam above her. “It's okay, I got you. Up we go...”

    He lifted her up into a sitting position against the wall, gently setting her down. The pair remained silent for several moments.

    “...What the hell was that, I'm afraid to ask?”

    Kyrie chuckled tiredly. “I had a little help...from a Nightmare...”



    \/
    /\



    The table instantly fell silent. Dusek stood quickly, clenching his fists. Several other of the men jumped to their feet as well, all looking upward.

    “What the fuck was that?” snarled Hunter, tossing his chair back against the wall.

    “It felt like some kind of energy bomb or something,” growled one of the cloaked Elite generals. “Has the Council found us?”

    “No...” whispered the King. “Put us on alert, immediately. Hunter, go up to the source of the energy and see what is going on. Keep the fatumiam safe at all costs, understood?”

    “Of course.” said Hunter, heading for the door.

    “...I will go as well.” said Dusek quietly, quickly following him. He sighed, knowing full well what was going on. The energy blast...it was from that girl. No question, somehow she released a massive amount of energy.

    That was not what worried him, more than likely someone decided it would be a bright idea to try the Ritual on her. His worry was that she would be unstoppable. The man clenched his fists again. The idea of Darkrai having free rein over the Horde did not settle well with him one bit.

    Dusek picked up the pace behind Hunter, weaving through the corridors toward the upper levels. He eyed the man, frowning. That girl...she could be an asset for him. He had absolutely no doubt that the Horde general would slaughter her the moment he set eyes on the girl. If he got involved...that would start off a chain of events he couldn't stop.

    The man sighed. Why was life always so troublesome?



    \/
    /\

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
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    “What now?” asked Magnus, swallowing slightly. “Do you think we can get out?”

    Kyrie groaned, rubbing her temples. “I...really don't think we have a choice, do you?”

    The teenage boy looked down at the collapsed guard sprawled out at their feet. “...You can't by any chance do that again, could you? However the hell you did it.”

    She sighed exasperatedly. “My head would explode. Look, we don't have time to talk. Let's just...move.”

    He nodded, easing the door open. With a quick check to see if the hall was clear, he waved her forward. “I think we should go right and stick on it, it should lead us to the exit.”

    Kyrie closed her eyes, shaking her head slightly as she followed him into the empty corridor. “I can't think straight...you just lead okay?”

    “Stop.”

    She froze, looking quickly over at the left side of the hall. Hunter was rushing at them with blinding speed, black katana outstretched ready to smite the pair.

    There was no way it was going to end here. After everything they had been through...after everything that they still had to do...it just couldn't happen. Yet the teenage girl held absolutely still, wide eyes staring at the rapidly approaching blade. She was rooted to the spot...she couldn't move.

    With unreal speed, a dark blur fell on Hunter out of nowhere. Immediately the man's hand was redirected into the solid stone wall only feet in front of her, exploding dust and rock chips into the hall.

    She gasped, suddenly realizing what was happening. The girl jumped backward alongside Magnus, trying to get out of the way of the ricocheting debris.

    “Shit!” Kyrie cursed, the pain in her head immediately replaced with the searing of multiple slices all over her body. She cringed in pain, gazing down at the cuts that were just beginning to bleed along her exposed arms and legs.

    “Move!” shouted Magnus, grabbing her roughly and turning her toward the way out. She pushed him off angrily.

    “He saved us.”

    The boy frowned, looking up at the clearing dust cloud.

    Hunter stood holding his blade, which was buried to the hilt in the solid stone wall. A cloaked man stood directly behind, his hand on the man's arm. For a moment, no one moved.

    “That,” whispered the Elite. “Was not a wise move.”

    The cloaked man remained silent for a moment. Without any warning, the figure drew back with his free arm and pummeled Hunter sideways, sending him smashing into the stone with a thunderous roar. Another explosion of dust and debris rushed outward, sending both Kyrie and Magnus flying bodily backward into the far wall.

    Kyrie's vision blurred for the shortest of moments before the wave of dust overtook her. She closed her eyes tight, trying to ignore the pain signals from seemingly everywhere in her body. After a few short moments, she took a tentative breath and opened an eye.

    It was total destruction. The entire corridor was littered with crumbled rock, parts of it many feet deep. A fine dust still lingered in the air, but it was not enough to obscure the view of Dusek standing in the middle of the destruction, looking entirely unscathed.

    She coughed, frowning. “Where...where is he?”

    The man looked up quickly, as if he had forgotten that they were there. “Ah...he is currently indisposed at the moment.”

    The teenage girl frowned, looking at the spot where Hunter had been. Emphasis on the had. A massive hole was directly in front of the cloaked man, reaching back easily ten feet into the solid rock. Barely noticeable at the very back was a dark, crumpled figure.

    “Holy shit...you...are you serious?”

    The man smiled. “I am. Personally I would rather not get any closer to the Overlord, given the chance.” A light glimmered in his cold gray eyes.

    “I...well thanks?” muttered Kyrie quietly. She looked over at Magnus, who was groaning softly beside her.

    “No reason for you two to die,” said Dusek softly. “Can you move? The proverbial shit is about to hit the fan, I would think.”



    \/
    /\



    “Listen to me and I might get the two of you out of here alive,” said Dusek quietly, striding quickly along the rough stone corridor with Kyrie and Magnus directly behind him. “Listen to my every command without hesitation. I do not worry about myself, I can handle anything they throw at me. If, for whatever reason, I am incapacitated in any way forget about me. I will find my way out somehow, do not fear.”

    “Like we would save you,” whispered Magnus under his breath.

    The man sighed. “Of course, I can leave you to fend for yourselves if you would prefer.”

    “No!” exclaimed Kyrie, shoving Magnus roughly. “We're in, don't worry. I...I'm going to sound retarded here, but are you sure you can't just blow anyone up that gets in the way, like what you did to Hunter?”

    Dusek smiled. “Do not worry, only one person here can challenge my skill. Anyone else...” he trailed off lightly. “Is fair game.”

    The girl smiled in spite of herself, looking up at the man as they rounded another corner. It's almost like he's enjoying this, she thought. At least someone is. Her smile turned into a frown after a moment. “Wait...someone here can challenge you? Who? As far as I've seen, Hunter was the baddest guy they've got.”

    He shrugged evasively. “Never know.”

    “So,” coughed Magnus, obviously trying to make up for his previous comment. “Well, what is the plan then? Should we just blow a hole in anyone we meet until we get to the entrance?”

    “I don't think so,” chuckled Dusek. “There is...someone who will undoubtedly want us stopped, and I am certain he knows he is the only one to do the job. Have you not noticed the lack of guards?”

    The teenage boy blinked, looking around at the empty hall around them. “Er...no I guess I didn't.”

    “That's why,” said the man, drawing his cloak tightly around himself. “Why waste his forces? No no...to get out I must face him, one way or the other. We are on the way to...meet with him. After I have taken care of him, we shall be free to leave.”

    “...I don't like it. If he's anywhere near as strong as you, why should we meet him head-on? What if there's an ambush or something? Does he know you well enough to know what you would do?” asked Kyrie thoughtfully.

    Dusek smiled. “You are a good strategist, your mind is always three steps ahead of the opponent. To answer your question, no I do not believe the man in question knows me well enough to plan for this. Of course it does not pay to underestimate your opponent, so I will go under the assumption that he is expecting me.”

    “Okay,” shrugged Magnus. “What about us?”

    “You stay behind,” said the man simply. “Out of harm's way. I trust you both to fend off any guards that come across you while I am busy. Understood?”

    The teenage girl nodded. “Yeah...it all sounds good. I...thanks.”

    The cloaked man nodded at the girl. “No need. Just follow my instructions and it should be cake.”



    \/
    /\



    The war room froze down to the last man. All eyes swiveled upon him, surprised looks written all over the faces of the many generals. Dusek smiled lightly. Now didn't this seem familiar?

    “You fool...” whispered the King, still as ever on his throne. “Leave us. Everyone.”

    Dusek stepped sideways, a polite smile on his face as the various figures walked past him, all manner of glares and dirty looks thrown in his direction. After a moment the room cleared, leaving him and the hunched over King alone.

    “Why...?”

    The cloaked figure shrugged, the polite smile remaining in place. “I have all manner of reasons of doing what I do. One of which is a strong desire to stay away from the Overlord.”

    “I guessed as much...” rasped the King. “I was surprised to hear that the Overlord would send you as an envoy to me, when as far as he knew I was nothing but a feeble old man living out the last of his days away from the Council...”

    “I shall give you the same warning as I have given others many times. Do not underestimate the Overlord...woe to the fool who does...”

    “Still, Dusek. I extended my hospitality to you, and how do you repay it? No no...this will not be tolerated. I cannot risk the end of what I have worked toward for so long...”

    “If that is how you see it,” sighed Dusek, making an exasperated gesture with his arms. Almost imperceptibly, the stone surrounding the the throne shifted.

    “Goodbye, my friend...” whispered the King. With a long drawn out pause, the cloak that hung loosely around his body shifted, a melted, dead looking hand reaching out from beneath.

    Dusek's face remained emotionless, his mind fully concentrated on the ever so slightly moving stone all around the throne. His eyes followed the slow, deliberate rise of the hand, waiting until the absolute perfect moment to spring the trap.

    The hand closed, and he leapt up into the air, closing his fists tightly. In the blink of an eye the King disappeared out of the doomed throne as the stone around it exploded with an unreal fury. He leapt sideways in mid-air, skidding to the ground with a frown on his face. He had timed it perfectly...what went wrong?

    The answer was almost immediately apparent. In his deep concentration, he entirely neglected to notice the door open behind him at the exact second he sprung the trap. He looked backward, scowling. Five Elites were now standing in the entrance, holding Kyrie and Magnus firm.

    “Thought you had me, didn't you...?” chuckled a voice from behind him. Dusek leapt into the air, dodging the whip-like motion of the shadows below him. His feet landed sideways on the wall where he jumped again, narrowly avoiding another tendril of shadow. Dusek landed flat on his feet in the middle of the room, facing toward the demolished throne.

    “I did, in fact. If not for our little interruption you would be nothing more than soul without a body...”

    “I'm sorry!” cried Kyrie from behind. “They found us!” The sound of a hard punch echoed out immediately afterward, making the man cringe.

    “What is done is done,” he said evenly. “So you like hiding in shadows...well there's an easy way to fix that...”

    He cracked his knuckles, watching as they alighted in brilliant electricity. This would be harder than he thought.



    \/
    /\



    Kyrie doubled over in pain, struggling to draw a breath. “That...hurt.” she gasped, her eyes streaming.

    “Shut up!” growled the Elite who had just punched the girl in the stomach. “What shall we do with her?”

    “Kill them both,” came the King's voice softly from the shadows surrounding his destroyed throne. Slowly a cloaked head melted upward out of the darkness, shortly followed by the rest of the man's frail looking, cloaked body. “Dusek is mine.”

    The teenage girl looked up quickly at Dusek, who was standing in the middle of the now partially destroyed war room with his hands crackling with electricity. He made eye contact with her for a brief moment before literally disappearing and reappearing behind the King, thrusting his sparking hands at him. Before she could see what happened next, the back half of the room exploded.

    “Shit!” screamed a voice from behind.

    Kyrie wasted no time in dropping down to the ground, spinning around to face the Elite that stood behind her and smashing his face in with a punch. The Elite stumbled backward, temporarily stunned. She spun around to see Magnus already pushing one of the Elites backward into another.

    An explosion sounded behind her, and her mind flashed to Dusek. Before she could even do anything more than register what they were doing, the hilt of a sword slammed her straight in the face, knocking her to the ground.

    “Bastard!” snarled a voice from above. She blinked, feeling the light tickle of blood running down her nose. An Elite stepped over her (she dimly realized it was the same one she had punched only a few moments before), twisting his considerably sized sword bloody hilt down. The silver blade glinted in the gloomy light above her, twisting downward toward her.

    “No!” cried the voice again, bodily tackling the Elite out of the way. Kyrie shook her head, jumping to her feet. Magnus was being wrestled to the ground by the Elite just a short way in front of her, and out of the corner of her eye she could see several others approaching them rapidly.

    She rushed toward the struggling pair, descending in a fury of punches and kicks upon the Elite, who was roughly shoving the teenage boy to the ground. He snarled loudly as the girl hit him repeatedly from behind and began to turn to deal with her.

    Her lips curled into a slight smile as she drew back and let loose with a powerful kick straight to the man's crotch. The Elite stumbled sideways, his arms reaching out for thin air.

    “Die asshole!” yelled Magnus, drawing a knife Kyrie didn't even know that he had and plunging it into the Elite's stomach. The man flinched, shoving the boy backward into the stone wall. In a single sweeping motion, the figure pulled the knife out of his own stomach and slashed out at the defenseless Magnus.

    With a massive explosion, the Elite was struck with a blazing bolt of lightning in the back. Blood splattered all over the wall as the man crumpled, falling limply to the ground.

    Kyrie spun around to see Dusek fade out of view from the middle of the room. The dark shadow that was all around the walls and floor was alive and writhing, spreading out everywhere like a giant snare. Dusek quickly reappeared clinging to a broken stone hanging from the roof and immediately shadow reached out for him. He let go nimbly, his cloak flying up around his body as he fell. In midair his hands lit up in electricity once again as he arced downward in a perfect swan dive, driving his sparking arms deep into the stone floor. The entire hall shook, tendrils of lightning illuminating the entire room through miniature cracks that were literally everywhere, extinguishing all shadow for the briefest of moments.

    A half of the broken throne that was lying sideways on the ground morphed quickly into the King, who got to his feet deliberately. “You haven't lost your talent...that is for sure...” said the man quietly, pale gray hands drawing his cloak tighter around his body.

    Dusek pulled his unharmed hands out of the ground, turning to face the King with the same polite smile as he had worn the entire time. “Oh on the contrary. I am much more powerful than before. While this is quite amusing and all...I rather think we should truly get down to business. Let's not beat around the bush, shall we?”

    The teenage girl blinked in amazement. That was Dusek going easy? Her situation flashed into her mind, and quickly she surveyed what was going on behind her. Magnus was slowly getting to his feet (which made her realize just how fast that battle had been), his eyes firmly on the clearly dead Elite lying at his feet. She looked over at where the other four Elites sat and was surprised to see that they hadn't even made a move to come help their fallen comrade or even try to come for revenge. They were all staring resolutely at the hunched-over King, as if they considered dealing with her and Magnus not important any more.

    “Ah Dusek, you disappoint me... how you disappoint me. Very well, no more shadow games. This is for real,” The cloaked figure turned slowly to face his Elites. “Dispose of them quickly and brace yourselves. I believe...it is time to begin.”

    Kyrie frowned. Time to begin? What was he talking about? She looked to Dusek for his reaction, but he was absolutely still, staring ahead at the King silently. “This isn't good, Magnus let's get out of here!” she exclaimed.

    “Too late.” the King said softly. In the blink of an eye he raised his arms toward the ceiling, sending out a pure black beam of energy. Before it even reached the roof, Dusek leapt upward, plunging an arm into the energy and dragging it with him as he fell back to the ground.

    She gasped. An immense wave of cold washed over her, seizing her with the strong desire to lay down and move no more. Even Dusek seemed to be suffering as his arm was fully engulfed in the energy, his face screwed up in concentration. If he was in pain it wasn't stopping him from holding the beam firm.

    “Kill them!” rasped the King, who seemed to be struggling to stop the flow of energy from his palms.

    The teenage girl quickly looked to Dusek, who could only shake his head slightly. She swallowed. They were on their own, then.

    Magnus picked up the foul knife from the fallen Elite's hand, stepping forward beside Kyrie. The four remaining Elites all turned to them, drawing weapons and starting toward the pair.

    “Kyrie, listen to me. Our only chance is to push through and get out, we don't stand a chance against these guys,” said Magnus, leveling the knife towards the oncoming Elite. “Don't try to fight them, just let's get the hell out.”

    The girl nodded, wiping her still-bleeding face with her arm. “Okay, go!”

    The pair of teenagers rushed forward to meet the Horde soldiers, both heading toward the outermost one in hopes of reaching the exit. Almost immediately these hopes were dashed, as Kyrie found herself losing control of her legs. It was as if invisible hands had reached out of the ground and were grabbing at her, causing her to stumble into the wall.

    Magnus, however, wasn't as lucky. She could tell the same thing was happening to him, but instead of immediately falling over he stumbled only a bit before continuing his charge.

    Her eyes opened wide. The outermost Elite seemed ready for him, raising his sword toward the oncoming teenager. “MAGNUS NO!”

    The boy seemed to notice what was happening at the last moment, but it was too late. With a single step forward the Elite plunged his sword into the approaching teenager, spearing it straight through his heart.

    Magnus stopped abruptly, his eyes wide. He slowly turned his head toward the girl, a trickle of blood visible at the edge of his lip. His mouth opened slightly, trembling as he tried to make out one last word. Before he could finish it, the light left his eyes and he crumpled on the blade.

    A bomb went off inside Kyrie. White hot emotion erupted inside, burning her away from the inside out. Fury, overwhelming fury overtook her mind, spreading like a disease throughout her body. He was gone.

    Gone.

    Her fists clenched tight, white knuckles showing through. Horrific screams were crying out from somewhere, only for her to realize that they were her own.

    IT IS TIME.

    The girl writhed and twisted, still screaming in agony.

    RID THE WORLD OF THIS.

    Tears of blood leaked from her eyes, falling to the ground before being smeared in by her convulsions.

    LET ETERNAL AGONY BEFALL EACH AND EVERY ONE OF THEM.

    Her skin ignited in an all-consuming burn, feeling like it was peeling away.

    ALL YOU HAVE TO DO IS LET ME IN.

    Her head fell back, letting out a spine-tingling scream.

    IT IS TIME.

    Kyrie's scorching red eyes lowered at the group of Elite who stood in front of her, afraid to move. She felt tears of blood roll down her face, searing and burning against her agonizingly painful skin.

    “Die.”



    \/
    /\



    She breathed in deeply, the acrid smell of ash somehow soothing. Her almond eyes blinked calmly, staring out at the pale white ash, tinged ever so slightly red by the angry scarlet sky. She knelt down slowly, scooping up a handful of the ash.

    Her hand rose up in front of her deathly pale face, opening gently. The ash slowly began sprinkling out from beneath her fingers, falling to the ground and disappearing among the anonymity of the surrounding remains.

    A harsh wind razed the immense field of destruction, blowing her short brown hair backward. She watched, emotionless, as the pure white ash fell from her hand, taken by the wind and spread into infinity.

    Her fist closed slowly, and she got to her feet. A vague, twisted shadow stretched about all around her, the structure whistling slightly in the wind behind her.

    The teenage girl sighed once more, gazing out at the vast wasteland. After several moments of quiet contemplation she turned her back on the scene.

    A behemoth of a tower stretched up into the sky above her, black as pitch. It seemed to be made out of something similar to black marble, making a striking contrast against the immense amount of white ash that surrounded it.

    Without a sound the girl stepped forward, walking through the seemingly solid surface of the tower. In this place the normal laws of physics did not exist. Nothing did.

    An immense spiral staircase reached upward as far as her eyes could see, lit gently by the scarlet sky. The fact that no windows or other openings existed did not matter. Visibility was not a problem at any rate; there was only one way to go here. Up.

    The girl approached the staircase silently and began to climb. On and on she ascended, never pausing or looking back. Time was irrelevant, she would be there when she was ready.

    Before another thought entered her mind, the teenage girl stepped out of the tower onto the roof. The view was grander and larger in all possible ways, and yet it was the same. Hell had no good views.

    Her emotionless eyes scanned the top of the tower. Everything was as it had been before, with the exception of a single square black box, made of the same dark material as the tower. There was no latch or lock nor ornamentation, merely a dull red ruby set deep inside the top of the box.

    Without hesitation she approached it. It was clear this was the reason she was here, of course it was. Her pale fingers stretched out, easily opening the top. She blinked, pausing for the slightest of moments before leaning forward to see what was inside.

    Immediately she was overcome with memories. They flashed across her mind faster than she could comprehend, and yet with each flash she felt as if she was regaining a piece of herself that had been lost. The torrent eventually slowed down to the point where she could distinguish each individual moment of her past.

    A boy stands alone, gazing at her with a smile.

    [when no one else was there]

    Her smiling widely as a kindly looking man handed her a small wooden box.

    [i am worth something]

    Two young people, a man and women, both gazing down at her.

    [a family at last]

    Three teenage boys laughing at her.

    [friends just to have friends]

    A cloaked man, his arm buried in dark energy, looking up at her.

    [help when it was needed most]

    A teenager gazing up at the stars along with her, his arms around her gently.

    [the only one]


    Kyrie stepped backward from the seemingly empty box, gazing at it silently.

    “It is a wonderful thing, no?”

    She blinked. “Yes...”

    “Reflected in that simple box are your fondest memories...your greatest desires...innermost thoughts. Everything that could ever matter.”

    “Why is it here?”

    “Because you are. This is not something that has any physical presence at all, it is something that is carried inside you always, ready at any time you need. Do you understand?”

    The teenage girl nodded slowly. “It can't bring him back, though.”

    Silence fell on top of the highest tower.

    “How deeply do you care about him?”

    Kyrie turned to face the shadowy wraith. “Entirely.”



    \/
    /\



    “Die.”

    A massive wave of shadow erupted from her form, devouring everything in it's path. Tendrils of energy wound around it's victims, tearing violently into their pale, toughened flesh. Blood erupted from each of the five bodies, spraying against the walls.

    Silence overtook the war room, as even Dusek and the King looked away from their battle to gaze at the carnage.

    Kyrie gasped, falling to her knees. She blinked, her eyes returning to their original almond color. At once she felt Darkrai withdraw back, disappearing deep inside her. It was done...they were dead.

    “You...” whispered the King. “I have not seen a Shadow Pulse in nearly sixty years, child.”

    The girl blinked moisture out of her eyes as pure, crystalline tears fell to the ground. “I...it's over...”

    “Indeed,” came Dusek's calm voice. “The King has no one to guard him. No defense against you cutting him down this very moment, in fact.”

    She sniffed, suppressing the churning emotions that were tearing her apart in every possible way. There was still work to be done. “Yes...I will...”

    Slowly the girl rose to her feet. Her mind was absolutely blank, there was only one thing to do in the entire world now. Kill the King.

    “That is not a wise move.” rasped the cloaked figure.

    Kyrie ignored him, stepping forward and kneeling down in front of one of the mangled bodies of an Elite. Without pausing she kicked aside his deeply lacerated arm, reaching down and pulling his sword from his clenched hand.

    She stood up, facing the pair. Things were exactly as they had been before; both men locked with a pulsing black beam linking them.

    This was over.

    The teenager began approaching the cloaked King, raising her sword slowly. “You are done.” she whispered as she came to a stop directly in front of the man. Silence fell once more.

    “Just die.”

    The sword arced downward, aimed directly at the neck of the man. For a split second the girl reveled in the thought of his death, how revenge was going to be served.

    Then with a flash of red light all went dark.




    \/
    /\



    Everything hurt.

    Kyrie cracked open an eye, wincing in pain. An infinite expanse of blue, darkened ever so slightly, stretched out above her. She took a shallow breath, taking a moment to compose herself. What was going on again?

    Her heart seemed to jump up in her throat. Magnus.

    The teenager sat up stiffly, looking around quickly. A vast expanse of mountains stretched all down below her, mist once again shrouding their mighty bases. It was a view ever more beautiful than the one on the ledge overlooking the village.

    She looked sideways. Dusek was only a few feet away, sitting peacefully on the edge of the rock, staring out at the view. Only a few feet behind her was a peaceful looking boy, his eyes closed in an eternal slumber.

    “No...”

    The man turned his head slowly, gazing at her with his cold gray eyes. “You are awake. Do not worry, it's all over.”

    Kyrie blinked, staring at the form of Magnus. “I...is it really over?”

    Dusek got to his feet, his long cloak wrapped around him firmly. “Yes. There was an explosion, but I was able to get the both of you out. Their fortress in almost completely destroyed, it was quite a sight.”

    The girl nodded halfheartedly, bowing her head. “...Is he...?”

    Dusek paused, averting his eyes out to the mountains below. “...Dead? Yes, I am afraid so.” he said softly.

    She blinked hot tears from her eyes, trying her best to keep in control. “There's nothing you can do?”

    The man sighed, turning back to the girl. A brisk wind blew though the area, sending his cloak sideways. A tinge of regret ran through his hardened heart. Was he getting soft? His eyes fell upon the clearly dead form of Magnus. “Let me see.” he said quietly.

    Avoiding eye contact with the girl, knowing the sight of her tear stained face would only make him feel guilty, he approached Magnus and knelt over him. Cursing himself slightly, he rested his palm on the boy's forehead and closed his eyes.

    Kyrie's heart nearly stopped. Dusek was sitting absolutely still in front of Magnus, hunched over him. She knew he was dead...but still she could help but hope that maybe, maybe something could be done. Nothing else mattered, nothing at all.

    She blinked, looking away into the sky. The fiery setting sun was disappearing below the mountains, it's brilliant red light slowly fading away into darkness. A silent moment passed, her eyes affixed on the setting sun.

    “It's done.”

    The teenage girl looked backward at Dusek, who was now standing in front of Magnus. Her eyes grew wide. No...there was no way...

    His chest rose ever so slightly.

    “Magnus...”

    She took a tentative step towards him, afraid to believe her eyes. Her eyes were glued to his chest, watching as it slowly rose and fell. “You...you...”

    “Yes.” said Dusek calmly.

    A smile broke out on her face, and exhaustedly fell to her knees on the ground. “It's finally over...all of it...”

    “Indeed. Look for yourself.”

    She tore her eyes away from the form of Magnus, gazing down at one of the numerous mountains that stretched out below. The remains of a destroyed fortress, built deep inside a mountainside, was barely visible behind a massive curtain of black smoke.

    “The King escaped, along with a large portion of his Elite as well. I was only able to grab the pair of you before it all went up. As much as I would like to rest, we must get moving however. Grab Magnus and let's go, shall we?”

    Kyrie nodded exhaustedly, beyond any arguments. She reached down and hefted the teenage boy onto her shoulders, tiredly getting to her feet. Without a word she followed Dusek, walking toward a winding path that presumably led down the mountain. Her eyes lingered on the smoldering remains of the hell that was the Horde.

    “...Goodbye.” she whispered, shifting Magnus on her back before heading off into the fading twilight.



    \/
    /\



    Scorching heat melted the solid stone walls, letting off an acrid odor that was easily enough to kill. Flames danced inside the crumbled and destroyed corridor, casting a bright orange glow bright enough to be visible through the thick black smoke.

    The strong iron bars of a row of cells were child's play to the roaring flame, turning them into molten slag within moments. Cracks ran all across the groaning walls, tremors threatening to take the entire corridor down.

    The unsteady light of the fire was not deep enough to reach into the shadow of one particular hole in the wall, stretching back far enough where even the smoke had not penetrated yet. Even over the roar of the blaze, the sounds of rubble being tossed aside were audible.

    With a stumble, a cloaked figure stepped out of the deep chasm. Beneath what was left of the hood was a horribly disfigured face that the fire had not yet devoured.

    “Dusek...”









    |||end|||

  16. #16
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    One thing real quick, am dense not realizing Darkrai is actually in Part One of this story. ^^;

    Now, to the review. There's quite a lot I want to say. XD

    I say, some development in Dusek in this part. Love how you have him think over this endgame coming up and also him saving the two teenagers in the last couple of scenes.

    That scene with Kyrie explaining to Magnus that there's no one left I think you could have done better.

    Magnus reached out and pulled her into a strong hug. “Don't worry, we're both fine. First thing we need to do though, is get out of here,” He looked her straight in the eye. “I think I found a way out, but everyone is going to have to be quiet. Can you fight?”

    “There's no one left.”
    He took a breath, shaking his head slightly. “Okay, okay. When I saw you run for it, I wasn't ready. You made it all the way to the end, and that Elite stopped you. The one on my side rushed forward to help, and I saw it was wide open. So...I just ran for it.”

    The shadow of a smile lightened the girl's face. “You left me?”
    On the first quot, I thought you could have put more emotion on Kyrie, like maybe her breaking down after hearing Magnus said that. Also, I don't know, but on the second quot I thought it's weird for Kyrie to smile after Magunus told her he left her, especially the two of them being emotional that everyone died during the ritual.


    I say, I love the battle and also how you develop Kyrie's emotions after Magnus got killed. Seriously, creepy stuff there.

    That nightmare scene...to tell you the truth, it reminds me too much from the ending of Chapter Nine of TEN. Even though I can see that the writing style is a bit different (which I like by the way), sometimes it can get repetitive if you use the same scene in different situations, if you get what I mean.

    After reading the alternative ending, the scene before the explosion I think you could've let Dusek warn Kyrie that she's been trapped since he knew what's going to happen (more in a "KYRIE, WAIT!" kind of way, not like the alternative version, which I'll explain in a bit). Not only that, Dusek seems to have a change of heart and all (if I misinterpret that, though, let me know ^^; ).

        Spoiler:- alternative ending:


    Anyways, I really enjoyed this little diddy and am looking forward to what parts Dusek and the teenagers will have in TEN now.


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  17. #17
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    one word explains everything you have written so far. Wow.
    This is seriously the best thing I have ever read.
    you're writing skills amaze me. I never got around to reading the rest of TEN, but i definitley will now. Just. Wow. you're amazing duncan.
    Kyrie seems pretty scary to. I definetley wouldn't want to get on her bad side.
    If you write a book, it would be ten times better then the harry potter books, and the twilight books, joined together. I bow down to you duncan.
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  18. #18
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    I only read the first chapter you posted, but I have to say, duncan, you have exceeded any expectations. You truly are a great writer man, and I am loving what you write, like always.

    I can't wait to see what else you write man for this story, and I wish I had more time to read it, but rest assured I am watching.
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  19. #19
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    Finally.

    God, duncan you're slow. I mean seriously man, how long did I have to wait.

    And one question still eludes me. HOW THE HELL ARE YOU DODGING THE SWEAR FILTER!?

    I saw the f word, fully formed in there.











    Although. It was entirely worth the wait.

    =]

    You got some skillz man.
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    Bay:

    Thanks. I really enjoyed using Dusek throughout all of this, he's quite a bit of fun to write.

    As for the quotes you pointed out, the first one I see what you mean. I'm honestly not sure what I was doing there, to be honest. As for the second one, I think that's okay. A little humor after something like that isn't totally unrealistic.

    I had to go reread the end of Volume Nine to see what you were talking about. XD I swear you know TEN better than I do. Well...looking back I do see the similarity now. I don't know if it's that bad, though.

    As for the alternate ending, I agree. I liked the idea of explaining the fatumiam (which will definitely come up in the future), but it got twisted with so many traps upon traps, with some stale dialogue in the middle. Meh.

    Thanks for the review, Bay. Although if you call this 40 page two-shot a diddy I'm afraid to ask what you would call the much shorter version of this it almost turned out to be. XD

    burgaz62:

    Oh you're being too nice. :P You really don't know how much reading that made me smile. This and TEN aren't anywhere near being able to be written at a professional level, but the fact that you think so is just great. I'm glad you enjoyed, and I hope you enjoy catching up on TEN.

    LinksOcarina:

    Hey man, it's good to see you. Thanks, I'm glad you enjoyed. It's funny, any time you review (or chosen_one386) I always laugh because you guys stuck with me through the first saga all that time ago. XD Seriously, if you guys hadn't stuck with me I probably never would have even finished it.

    And no worries, read whenever you have time.

    Diddy:

    I'm not always this slow. :P You try dealing with a computer that dies every ten minutes and write.

    And you've never noticed? TEN (and obviously this) has been decensored since probably Volume Six or so. XD

    Thanks, I'm glad you liked it. I better go use my skillz to get the next Volume of TEN to finish now, huh?

  21. #21
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    really really good
    and i must say it is kinda disturbing to see one of the original enemies start to turn 'good'
    but it is a bold move which i like
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  22. #22
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    The Elites officially creep me out. o__o Especially with regards to the ritual that initiates them... *shudders*

    Other highlights:

    “Hey, who the hell are you?” asked one of the guards, surprised.

    “Marvolo Dusek.” the traveler said curtly.

    The guard looked to his counterpart, frowning. The other man shrugged, turning to the newcomer. “And...who the hell are you?”
    X3 I love that response.

    Dusek remained stone-faced. “...My question is...how is someone expected to survive?”

    Hunter remained silent. With a slight nod to the King, he turned to leave. Before reaching the door he paused.

    “Very few do. Welcome to the Horde, Dusek.”
    o__o Creepy answer there...

    Release your grip without a sound
    I do believe mine eyes detect a Metallica reference, oh yes. ^^ And from one of my favorite songs off their latest album, too. <3

    With a soft whisper, Hell melted away.
    I love that line. ^^

    Let her enjoy the memory of each and every one of her friends dying a long, painful death...
    Oh gee, what a lovely thing that is to say. X3



    So yeah. Overall, this was some really cool stuff (and it had a nice dose of creepiness as well), and it really grabbed and held my interest--I had a tough time pulling myself away from it whenever I had to pause to attend to something else. Nice work, and thanks for posting this story. ^^
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  23. #23
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    Master of All:

    Thanks. But I wouldn't count on Dusek being good just yet, though. He's sort of neutral right now I suppose, but don't count him on the Duncan's side just yet.

    Sike Saner:

    The Elites and the Ritual creep you out? I think I should take that as a compliment. XD

    And aha, I was hoping someone would catch that. Yes, it's from All Nightmare Long, which is my favorite song as well. I just happened to be listening to that song while writing that scene, so I figured it would work perfect.

    Thanks for the review, I'm glad you enjoyed. I definitely had a lot of fun writing it, I can tell you that.

  24. #24
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    ...

    Venus still sounds hotter than Kyrie.

    But props to Kyrie for trying to make me a fanboy of her by being all "I has Darkrai powerz" and killing five of those fucking creepy elites all at once.

    <3!

    All in all, your second most awesome work I've read.

    The most awesome one was Chapter Ten of TEN, of course. XD

    But yeah, I semi-understand Dusek and Hunter now! And at least Kyrie's pretty awesome for a fourteen-year-old who can give you nightmares of doom.

    Now to go back to TEN and enjoy the Venus. =D


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  25. #25
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    Dramatic Melody:

    ...You like Kyrie too? All hope is lost.

    Thanks. Ten was awesome, definitely my favorite thing I've ever written as well.

    Yeah, the main reason behind this was to explain about Hunter and Dusek more (and of course to introduce Kyrie and Magnus). Glad you're semi cleared up. Of course anything else would be wholly unacceptable. Thanks for reading.

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