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Literature
Skeletons On Parade
The Sun fell low behind the three hills of the nearby city. The stars had begun to twinkle ever brighter, and the moon traveled higher and higher to replace the Suns vacancy. The bright yellow horizon had faded into a dim orange and finally a dark blue as it fell below the skyline and gave its brilliance to someone else. The city was bigger than you might be thinking and was completely isolated from the surrounding places and people. It was lovely to see at any time of the day, but the true fun sprang up at night. And tonight, was no different. There is a reason as to why the city is isolated, A very important reason as you will soon see. The people looked incredibly tired and sapped of energy, almost as if they would collapse onto the ground at any moment. Everyone tonight had dressed in all black clothing, attire respectful for the cemetery. Many of the attendees brought flowers and placed them on the graves of their loved ones, giving silent prayers of love and care to ones they wou
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Mature content
Hex Children :iconfacelessbuster:FacelessBuster 4 0
Mature content
Chronicles of Alvarys: Kaius Silverblade Chapter 2 :iconfacelessbuster:FacelessBuster 5 0
Literature
Digital Love
It was a simple night like it always was. The sky was clear, not a cloud anywhere to be found and the moon bigger than it had ever been. There was an air of mysticism that you could almost feel but it was just illusive enough to evade feeling. This suit was very stuffy. I felt every part of me sweat profusely but then again that may have just been because of nervousness. I was scared out of my mind. Was my breath good? Did I smell good? Was there something in my teeth? Should I take my glasses off? Should I leave them on? Is the flower too much? Should I have gotten a corsage instead? Do I look weird? Is the suit too big for me? This feels too big for me. Ah the sweating is getting worse! My friend patted me on the shoulder and gave me a grin. It calmed me more than I thought it would. He wrapped his arm around my shoulder and walked with me inside, laughing vibrantly. He was clearly excited. The school dance was something he wouldn’t shut up about all week. We walk inside and th
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Literature
Something To Hide
Class hadn’t started yet. The teacher simply sat in his chair and glared at his computer screen with eyes of hunger before he turned to me. I think. I felt like everyone was staring at me. They just kept their eyes glued to my mask and gave a hollow grin, their eyes scrunching up ever so slightly when one does as they smile. It stabbed my very core like nothing before. My friend Skull looked at me and nudged me, bellowing a chuckle that sounded like a bear scarfing down food. I chuckled with him, like a lion cub trying to roar. The class began, and the teacher fixed his mask before beginning the lesson. I could hear my friend whispering with his other friends, Wolf, Snake and Raccoon. “Where is she?” “Do you think she’ll show?” “You said she would be here.” was most of what I heard before Skull assured them that she was on her way. He then leaned over to me and whispered, “You did it right?” Just then the door burst open and t
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Mature content
Chronicles of Alvarys: Miscellaneous Myths :iconfacelessbuster:FacelessBuster 2 0
Literature
Petting
Charlie and Dawn were sitting at a small table in a fast food store and munching away at their food, talking about basic nonsense. Dawn was a human girl, soft brown eyes, chocolate colored skin and curly black hair while Charlie was a brown colored wolf with very fluffy fur with it being winter and all.
"Alright new question. Super geeky by the way:Who would win in a fight? Superman or the Hulk?" Dawn asked munching on a French fry. Charlie didn't even look up from his food.
"Superman. Hands down." Dawn's jaw dropped.
"No freaking way! The Hulk is like a thousand pounds of raw strength, dude!"
"Yeah but Superman's Superman."
"That doesn't mean he beats everyone who can ever exist!" Charlie chuckled and looked at her with a smile.
"What makes you think he can lose?"
"Alright well... Lets stretch some nerd muscles here. The Hulk once held up an entire mountain."
"Superman pulled the Earth."
"The Hulk had a healing factor that beats Wolverines."
"So does Superman."
"If he's around the Sun
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Mature content
Carmilla :iconfacelessbuster:FacelessBuster 2 0
Literature
Chronicles of Alvarys: Kaius Silverblade Chapter I
Blackwood. A cold place. A poor place. It's nothing special by any stretch of the imagination. In fact it's nothing period. Blackwood is a very old and decrepit place. The wood is rotting, the walls crumbling, the trees and plants wilting, and the people suffering. It's a hellhole. This story is a long one. A very long one. And it details the rise of the great man we give thanks to to this very day for forming the great and powerful empire of Meria. You may be wondering what Meria is but don't you worry. All will be explained in due time. I simply ask you to be patient...
The King of Blackwood stood over the map of the country and frowned as so much of it was colored red. Red was a color that detailed the areas that truly had no laws. No rules. No royal influence. Anything went in these rogue infested lands. And sadly his city was apart of the red. There was nothing he could do anymore. It was just a matter of survival at this point. He was so deep in thought, so ingrained in his thoug
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Mature content
The Story of Weyla Chapter 2 :iconfacelessbuster:FacelessBuster 4 0
Mature content
Modern Gods :iconfacelessbuster:FacelessBuster 6 0
Literature
I Am Not Mad
Miscellaneous Story: This is purely a work of fiction and in no way does this writing accurately reflect anything the writer has done, thought about doing, is going to do, or what they think about. This is simply writing something that I do not write often. I would love feedback to all who may read it. Inspired by The Tell Tale Heart by Edgar Allen Poe.
Truly there is nothing I love more than the sweet sound of silence. In this day and age it can be quite hard to find it as with the growth of technology, everything gets louder and louder to the point that I can’t hear. You ask me why I did what I did? Allow me to explain the story from the beginning for starting at the end is a mad man’s role…
I simply lay in bed at my home, the sun was going down and the Moon was taking it’s rightful place amongst the heavens as the most beautiful thing that could be and with her came a blissful silence that is hard to find during the day. And then the silence was broken
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Literature
His Unification Brings Death
The country is burning. Scattered and wounded. It is bleeding in a way that is both subtle and blatant, slow and dizzyingly fast. A crowd of people in feverous anger conjoin together and debate what is to be done for the fate of the country. Yet at the head of it all is a man who you know never speaks wisdom. His tongue a smooth silver yet everything that spews off of it is pure excrement. He is not a man to follow yet wants you to follow him nonetheless. He asks that you blind your eyes and sever your ears in a show of loyalty and open your mouth when he is ready to hear what you have to say. He stands in front of everyone and holds his arms up in a hushing motion, the hollers of the room dimming to a dull whisper.
"Strength is not shown in words but rather in actions. Our home shatters every waking second and rather than battle amongst ourselves, we must battle against the termites that gnaw at our home. We must unite! And I believe that I can guide this country through this blight a
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Mature content
The Story Of Shen Chapter 1 :iconfacelessbuster:FacelessBuster 2 0
Literature
Celestial Voyage
The great Pyramids of Egypt. One of the most recognizable places on the world now called Earth. A symbol of the great pride for the Egyptian people and something that all not native to the land believe to be otherworldly. Massive mountain like structures that reaches the skies and are kissed by the glorious sun every passing day. What are they for? Why are they in Egypt? But more importantly... who made them? If you truly wish to hear of this story, get comfortable, mortal, for this will be quite the long one...
Millions and millions of years ago, long before recorded history and centuries before the birth of Man, there was space. And in this space existed beings with greater technology than anything you have today. There are no words in any of your... primitive human languages to describe the magnificence of these people but there was one that came somewhat close. It was uttered by your ancestors everyday. God. Quite the title. The Lord of Life and our creator was Ra. Much like how th
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Literature
Seattle
I sit at the edge of the bed diligently, the object of my eyes laying there almost lifelessly as the rain on the outside of the building pits and pats against the window of the room, the sun far gone past the edge of the world and no longer wishing to give me the joy it once did before. To go the whole day worrying for you. You lay there in a state of incomprehensible pain yet your eyes closed and unmoving, your breath slow and steady yet every one taunting me of your pain and how you truly feel. Every second you exhale my heart races, unsure if this will be your last breath, my only solace the beeping of the monitor right next to you. How did this happen? I remember not. And you cannot tell me. All I know is you were hurt and I was not there. I see the damage done to you, small scratches and wounds and scars, each one worse than the one. I can’t look away. I refuse. It’s almost disrespectful. You’re moans of pain while you sleep there make my heart ache greater than
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The Sun fell low behind the three hills of the nearby city. The stars had begun to twinkle ever brighter, and the moon traveled higher and higher to replace the Suns vacancy. The bright yellow horizon had faded into a dim orange and finally a dark blue as it fell below the skyline and gave its brilliance to someone else. The city was bigger than you might be thinking and was completely isolated from the surrounding places and people. It was lovely to see at any time of the day, but the true fun sprang up at night. And tonight, was no different. There is a reason as to why the city is isolated, A very important reason as you will soon see. The people looked incredibly tired and sapped of energy, almost as if they would collapse onto the ground at any moment. Everyone tonight had dressed in all black clothing, attire respectful for the cemetery. Many of the attendees brought flowers and placed them on the graves of their loved ones, giving silent prayers of love and care to ones they would never see again. Tears of regret silently tapped the soil of the graves and brief cries of anguish filled the air. Before leaving, the families cleaned the tombstones, dusted away cobwebs and dust and then wandered back home, silently speaking of the best times with their loved ones. Mothers and Fathers, Sons and Daughter, Precious pets and the closest of friends. All were remembered today. All were missed. When families returned home, the mourning changed to fear as they did all they could to protect their home from what was to come. The windows were closed, the doors were locked, crosses hung around the neck of every child in every house. The adults took their children and hid them under the covers, silently praying over them as they always did and simply waited.

Outside was a man dressed in rags, shivering in the cold wind and looking for a place to rest. He knocked on the door of everyone in the village one by one and each house either refused him or simply did not open their door for him. He progressively became grew more and more frustrated with the people’s unwillingness to help him and every house that denied him - which is to say every house - was marked on the door with a white paint in the symbol of scratch marks. He smiled and walked his way to the tallest mountain in the area. On his way he saw seven women dressed completely in black cloaks, hoods covering their eyes and slowly walking along the same path as him. They lit every small torch they walked by one by one and following the path would have had them walk up the massive hill and light all the torches on the way. All 117 of them. The man waved at them - even though they didn’t even acknowledge his existence - and he quickly magically flew to the top of the mountain. At the peak was a massive bell, archaic symbols lined across it and the man took a deep breath. He whispered something before summoning a small hammer, no bigger than one you would use to bang in a nail. Maybe a little smaller. He cleared his throat and leaned in close to the bell. He checked his watch. It was time.

He lightly tapped the bell and it gonged loudly, the Earth trembling beneath his feet, a low hum crawling from the bell and down to the deepest parts of the earth, awakening all who lay underneath. The man laughed and called for the deceased to rise, their fingertips slipping through the Earth and pulling it open, decaying and rotting corpses pulling themselves above ground. Caskets burst open and head popped out, reborn dogs howling and children cackling as they dusted themselves off and began to traipse about the innards of the town. They looked ever so lively and happy to be among the living again, joyous to the point of madness. Their laughter filled the streets as they ran through the place, banging on doors, breaking windows, flipping cars and stealing all they could possibly find. What need did the dead have of television sets or beauty products? I don’t even think they could tell you why. Anything that wasn’t nailed to the ground they grabbed, they broke into homes and businesses and cars and even the tents of the homeless. Nothing was sacred. Nothing remained. Nothing was off limits. Skeletons walked the streets, the clicking and clacking of their bones echoing in the city while undead dogs howled and chased after them. Spirits flew through the air and devoured the environment, making a contest on who can eat the most trees. Witches joined them in the skies, hexes and curses flying through the night air and changing what few trees that did remain into any manner of thing they were thinking of. Giant candy canes, the bark turned chocolate for some, others turned into literal Giants while some began to take on life of their own, their roots pulling out of the ground and carrying them across the streets like a spider.

The children were all dressed in Halloween costumes, Vampires, werewolves, superheroes and other fictional people they loved. The ran through the city, the skeletons walking by their sides, the witches high above with the other spirits, the trees bringing up the rear. The all had the time of their lives as they walked through the city streets and banged on every door they passed. Every time no one answered, they grew more rambunctious. It was so quiet and lifeless that they might as well have been back in their caskets. The families inside grew more and more terrified as the mad cackling and screeching carrying on into the deepest and darkest streets. Their doors were knocked on, but they didn’t dare move to open it. They knew what awaited. Or at least… They thought they knew. A man all alone in his home heard the parade but remained under the covers and covered his ears. But then there was a knock. He hummed to hide the noise. Then he heard someone call for him. Three voices. One calling him darling, the other two daddy. He pulled his head from under the covers and listened carefully. They called for him once more. He steadily walked up to the door, every step making his skin crawl and heart race. When he touched the doorknob, he felt like it burned him and when he opened the door, he saw the parade walking by and his wife and daughters waiting for him. They looked so happy to see him and called for him to join them. With almost no hesitation he ran forward and hugged them as tightly as he possibly could. The entire feeling made him feel lighter than air and then suddenly he didn’t feel anything but the cold. Seconds passed, and he could finally feel his family still hugging him the warmth they gave him now. He finally had them in his arms again after years of cold and lonely nights.

Another family remained hidden when a knock came to their door. The child in the house did his best to ignore the noise but the calls were too hypnotizing. The boy got up from bed and ran to the door, his parents tripping over themselves to grab the boy and pull him back to bed. The mother tried to grab the boy but when he opened the door, the husband covered her eyes and made her look away. She cried for her son but there was nothing they could do anymore. The boy was greeted with the face of his little sister, smiling right back at him and grabbing his hand. She had passed almost two years ago and yet here she was in front of him happy as can be. Her hand was so cold and her gaze grey and lifeless but when he walked outside, he felt a cold rush over him and then saw how happy she really was and joined the parade, not even thinking twice about the family he was leaving behind.

The whole night was just this. Dead knocked on the door and grabbed those who responded pulling them into the parade where they would forever remain. The noise outside grew more and more chaotic as more and more people were brought into the parade, the souls grew restless and demanded that more come to join them.

“I thought you missed us! Where is our welcome!” They all cried. Soon they were no longer knocking and barged into the homes of the living, tearing up the houses and daring them to look them in eyes, to acknowledge their existence and really welcome them back. But no. Everyone hid their eyes, covered their ears and yelled to themselves to block out any temptation. Not even a passive glance, not even a curious one. Don’t even open your eyes and keep your ears tightly covered. The dead screamed but didn’t dare touch the living. It was the one rule of their return. They couldn’t touch the living but the living could touch them as oh so many have. Then the bell rung. All the dead froze and looked at the top of the mountain. All the candles leading up to the top of the mountain had been lit and the maidens rung the bell once more. The fun was over. The man at the top of the hill sighed and took off his hat, holding it close to his chest and hummed in tune with the bell. The maidens rung it a third time. The dead all calmed and slowly began to wander back from whence they came, crawling back into their vacant graves and caskets, the new dead joining their family beneath the dirt. The earth closed around them and the witches retreated to wherever they came from. Their spells wore off and the trees all fell over lifelessly, many leaning over and falling onto the homes nearby, crushing the houses beneath them. The man at the top of the hill had come down and walked through the graveyard, humming a lovely tune to calm all the energetic souls and smiling pleasantly at the newcomers reunited with loved ones.

“Goodnight all my children now, you must lay down your heads. You wouldn’t want the Sun to catch you missing from your beds. I wish that we could stay here, I wish with all my heart. But to the Earth we’ve been committed and now we must be part. Goodnight.”
Skeletons On Parade
Halloween! One of my favorite holidays! I like the idea of dressing up and asking people for candy, walking out late at night and laughing with friends. My parents let me stay out as late as I wanted even when I had school the next day and I loved it big time. My favorite costume was the Grim Reaper. Been dressed as him since 6th grade and been loving it. Anyway, this another one of those stories where I listen to a song and write what comes to mind. The song this time is Skeletons on Parade by Ludo. Great band. This one was longer than I intended and harder to write too but I like it quite a bit. Happy Halloween everyone! Hope all who read this enjoy!
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Finding the food we needed was difficult. Very difficult actually. A lot of these ingredients we had to try and find substitutions for cause they don’t sell them which is weird considering the menagerie of things we actually have in here.

“Of all the places I was hoping this store would have Frog’s feet. What kind of food ingredient is ‘Frog’s feet’ anyway?”

“Maybe it’s an Irish thing.” Joseph said looking through the shelves. We found some weird stuff called Wickles, Palmetto cheese, Sorghum syrup, Livermush, Fried Oreos and other weird stuff. I thought this stuff was only in southern markets. My mom used to make jokes about the crazy things she used to eat in the south. That’s nothing compared to the stuff the Morrigan sisters come up with.

“There’s no Frog’s feet but there’s maybe the sisters can make some Colcannon for us,” he said grabbing some butter.

“What the hell is Colcannon?”

“Delicious.” Joseph tossed the butter into the basket I was carrying and we walked to the checkout aisle. As we waited in line, we saw the store employees checking people out as quickly as they could and then saw every single person place their thumbs on some kind of device before it would go green and allow them to pass. Like some kind of ticket to leave the store. When our turn came up, I looked at the red-haired cashier lady and asked her what it was for.

“Oh, it’s something new the state is testing out. They’ve found a way to find out if you’re a… one of those Hex children just by your fingerprint.” She whispered the “hex children” part almost as if she was scared someone would hear her. I looked at the finger scanner and then looked around the exit and saw actual police officers standing guard. This is… this is some really scary stuff. I leaned over towards Joseph.

“You think if we just leave the food behind, they’ll let us go without a finger scan?”

“No.”

“Yeah me neither.” I sighed and watched as the cashier scanned all of our items. She looked up at me and I winked at her before she laughed.

“So lemme ask ya, you a natural red head or what?” I said leaning over the counter. She smiled at me but kept bagging the food while Joseph got out money to pay.

“Excuse me?”

“Well it’s just I know a lot of people who love dyin’ their hair but yours looks really pretty. My guess would be natural. Am I right?” She scanned the last item and Joseph gave her 40 bucks ad told her to keep the change. She looked at me, smiling a big smile, and nodded.

“Yeah. My mom is a red, so I got it all from her.”

“Well it looks beautiful. I wish I had hair like that.” I ran my hand through my incredibly short hair and she laughed. Joseph meanwhile grabbed the bags of food and walked towards the exit. “Well again it looks beautiful. You should be proud and should thank your mom for such an amazing head of hair. Have a good one!” She waved bye and I smiled as I got us out without having to finger scan. Yay me. Joseph had begun playing with some sugar sticks we got here before one of the cops stopped us right at the door.

“Excuse me gentlemen.” She was just a bit smaller in height than Joseph and I and we are both average in height. She had her black hair tied into a ponytail and wore glasses. Not shades but actual glasses. She pointed to the finger scanner and spoke rather sternly at us. “I don’t believe I saw you scan your fingers.”

“Oh. Well that’s just cause we are getting over a cold and don’t want to get anyone sick, ya know?” Somehow on cue Joseph actually broke out into an actual cough like he was choking on something. I looked at him and his eyes were watering and everything. “See? Don’t want people catching that.” She was not buying it.

“Sir I’m gonna need you to scan your finger.”

“I find this very unnecessary.” Joseph had brought out his phone and began texting someone. Probably one of the girls waiting for us outside. Don’t worry. We’ll get to them.

“Sir this is not up for debate.”

“We just-”

“Sir do as we ask, or we are going to have to arrest you for failure to comply.” Two more of the cops walked up behind her and placed their hands on their holsters, A clear sign for me to stop what I’m doing. I sighed and looked over at Joseph who nodded at me before putting his phone away. We walked back over to the finger scanner and I looked at it hesitantly. Everyone in the store was looking at us and I saw a few people bring out their phones and start recording. Cause that’s just what you do in situations like this I guess. I pressed my finger on the scanner and I felt the heat wash over it. My heart was racing furiously as I took another look at Joseph and he calmly cracked open one of the sugar sticks and breathe in the dust. His nose began to twitch, and I smiled until I heard the scanner beep and the guards pull their tasers on me. I raised my hands in submission and smiled nervously.

“Freeze freak!”

“Hey hey. Come on. Best two out of three? What do you say? Give me another chance!”

“Shut it!” They remained stone faced and kept their guns pointed at me before one of the them pointed it at Joseph. He was finally done making those weird facial tics and twitches you do before sneezing and actually sneezed, a massive cloud of sugary dust puffing out and distracting the guards. While they were coughing, Joseph stretched out his arm and closed his hand into a fist before grabbing me and directing me out of the fog. I grabbed the bag of food we had already paid for and I looked back and saw the officers aim their guns at us only to see that the guns had turned into bananas. I couldn’t help but laugh at that. I saw some of the bystanders chase after us before Anna and Koko pulled up in my car and opened the door for us.

“Come with us if you want to live!” Anna shouted as we jumped into the car. I gotta hit her later for that line. As we drove off, I swear I heard someone toss something at the back of the car and when I looked back I saw one of the people had no shoe on.

“Freak!”

“Stay away from our store!”

“Rot in hell!” Insult after insult was just spat off their furious tongues but I didn’t care… Well not much. Ya kinda get used to that stuff after years of hearing it. But no. We got the foooooood. Ha ha ha. A successful day in my eyes.

“What the hell did you two do to get the cops on you?” Koko asked as we floored it onto the highway.

“They got some new scanners in that store. It detects if you’re a human or a Hex child.”

“No way! I remember hearing rumors about it, but I didn’t think they’d actually do it.” Anna said looking back at us.

“People are freaking scared of us. Makes sense that they would start passing laws and whatnot to find us easier.”

“They have no reason to be scared of us though. We are very nice people. The worst I’ve ever done with my powers was blow up a girl’s skirt.” Koko punched Anna’s leg.

“Yeah that was my skirt ya dunce.” Anna giggled.

“Oh yeah. Forgot about that.”

“Yeah well it doesn’t matter how nice you are, if you can turn a human being into an animal or warp reality like you keep trying to do-”

“I’m getting better at it.”

“-Then they will never not be afraid.” The car got quiet after that and Joseph reached into the bag and brought out a candy bar for Anna and handed it to her.

“Oh my gosh they actually had these?!” She instantly opened it and took a huge bite out of it, sighing happily and leaning back in the chair. “I haven’t had these in years!”

“You’re talking with your mouth full,” Koko said smiling. Anna took another bite out and just started rambling on about… something. I honestly don’t know what the hell she was saying cause her mouth was full! Girl had no care though, still flappin’ them gums completely ignorant to decency and somehow still making everyone laugh. She always had a way to make us smile, even after a serious moment.

It’s been awhile since I was able to relax with my friends again. Everyone was always busy doing something else or going someplace or working or blah blah blah. The point is the gang is back and I’m happy to see them again. You may be wondering who “them” is. Well let’s do a bit of a roll call here. There’s Koko, the asian goth girl who I’ve been best friends with since elementary school and main magical talents are in spirits and dead things, Anna, the crazy one of the whole group and more like a puppy than anything honestly whose main specialty is visual manipulation and illusion casting, and Joseph, the quiet one. You know those kinds of guys who are usually in the back of the class and don’t interact much with anyone? He’s that kind of guy. And his specialty is conjuring, making something out of nothing. Oh, and then there’s me and my fantastic self. Name’s Jack. Hi. I guess you can say I’m good at enchanting? If it’s not magical, I can make it magic. The ride home felt rather long even though it only took about thirty or so minutes but once we got into the downtown area, I got an interesting chill down my spine. It was like a growing vibration that traveled down my spine and then back up where I suddenly heard… church bells? And flapping wings? What the hell?

Just then the source of this noise landed down in front of us. All of the world around us slowed down the instant this being made an appearance. She looked me dead in the eyes, unyielding and unflinching, as if peering into my soul. This girl looked like an angel. Like an actual, honest to God, living, breathing angel. She had about seven pairs of wings and a beautiful looking set of golden armor that shined almost as bright as the sun. Seriously. It almost hurt to look at her. I was so busy studying her features that I had never even pressed my foot on the break. Koko grabbed at the wheel and tried to turn it, but some kind of golden lettering materialized around the wheel and nothing could be done with it. It burned her hands and she peeled away as everyone braced for impact. Just seconds before we crashed into her, the angel raised her palm and the car instantly braked, freezing in place instantly like it wasn’t even moving beforehand. All four of us were made intangible and phased through the car, flying through the front and sliding across the street. Since we just went right through the car with nothing stopping our momentum, we flew out at about forty miles per hour and man does it hurt to be sliding across the road at that speed. Getting back up was a trial but we all managed to nonetheless and stared in awe at the Angel before us.

Looking at her, or him, made me feel really freaking weird about… About everything about myself. She, or he, was very beautiful, bright golden light hair that reached just beyond their shoulders. He or… She. I’m going with she. She had white robes on under a blue cloak that was kinda like a jacket and her wings… her wings were an amazing blue and gold. And there were so many! Well at least it seemed like it. I saw mainly two wings flapping gently while the illusion of about 12 others. Staring at her face was strange too as it had the same illusion like effect and made her look more masculine than feminine yet every time I blinked she switched right back to looking like a woman. She held a lily in her left hand, had her right hand on her sword which was left in its sheath at her waist. She wasn’t glaring at us, she didn’t look upset, she simply looked at us like you’d look at a little kid. That passive element of superiority. That innocent little smile you give to seem like a nice person and not to scare them away. Her feet never touched the ground and she raised her arms to the sky and said something in a language I don’t understand before looking at us once more.

“Do not fear sons and daughters of sin! I come not to fight. I come bearing good news.” Koko stood up first and dusted herself off, glaring at the angel.

“Good news, huh? Why should we care after what you just did to us?” The angel let the smile on her face get bigger and she pointed the lily at us and instantly the scars and wounds on our bodies were healed over as if they never existed. She looked rather smug but still retained the innocent and kind smile.

“You have our attention, Angel.”

“I am the patron saint to messengers, the light at the end of the tunnel, the protector of the weak and guardian to children. I am a child of God, one of His loyal followers, The strength of God. I am the archangel Gabriel. Do not fear me for I am not to be feared. Do not bow or kneel for I am not to be worshipped. I am simply a messenger. Please hear my message.” We all looked at each other meanwhile everyone around us was shocked as all hell. Makes sense though considering the angel just landed in the middle of a four-way intersection in broad daylight. “I am here to tell you that heaven is now open to all. All are allowed entrance to the Kingdom of Heaven at father’s request. And in order to get there…” She took a deep breath and looked practically ecstatic to explain this to us. “I need you to kill yourselves.” I heard Ana laugh out loud but seeing the look on Gabriel’s face shut her up.

“Oh, she’s serious.”

“I am always serious, Daughter of sin.” Gabriel floated closer to us but kept a distance holding her hands in a non-aggressive manner before placing the lily in her hair.

“Isn’t suicide against the bible or something?”

“One must learn to compromise if they want things to go their way. This is the only way for Mankind to be perfect again in the eyes of Father.”

“That’s not the God I’m familiar with.” I scoffed.

“Do you dare doubt the will and word of our Father?” Her voice wasn’t so much upset as it was genuine curiosity and confusion.

“I think we do. I’m not gonna kill myself for anyone, even if they are God,” Anna set Joseph down on the sidewalk and he pulled out his phone. I didn’t know who he was calling or why but that didn’t matter as Gabriel floated closer to us, shaking her head as she reached behind her back.

“Hex children… Michael told me this would happen. He said you would reject my offer. Still… it was worth a try.” She brought her hands from behind her and two heavenly swords appeared, her wings spreading long enough to cover the entire street from one sidewalk to the other. “I shall drag you before father myself, whether you like it or not.” In that instant, she charged forward way faster than any of us were expecting and shoulder bashed so hard she went through the car behind. Luckily Joseph had discreetly cast a protection spell on everyone while calling for help. Gabriel swung her swords at me and Anna, the two of us ducking and retreating to a safer distance.

“What do we do?” she asked me.

“I have an idea. How are your illusion spells?”

“Decent.”

“Now’s the chance to get better.” I clenched my hands into a fist and punched the ground muttering an incantation as the concrete began to corrupt my arms, slowly turning them from flesh to stone. It spread through my entire body - which hurt like hell might I add - and when it finished, I charged at the angel, prepared for a fight. I charged at her as fast as I could but there’s no way I could compete with her kind of speed. She dodged every attack I threw at her and did it all with this cocky smile on her face. I took a swing at her again and she ducked underneath it, flying behind me and slapping the back of my head.

“Child,” she said simply. I turned around and tried to punch her again, but she flew overhead, once again behind my back but remained upside down. “So lost without Father’s guidance.” I turned around and threw a left hook at her and she caught my fist before pushing me away and flipping right side up. It was then that Anna blindsided her with a beam of energy. Gabriel skid across the ground before using her wings to block the attack. Not letting the angel breathe, Anna rubbed her hands together and reached behind her back, summoning her own pair of swords and rushing forward. She shouted an incantation and her body split into two both Anna’s leaping into the air and ready to crash down onto Gabriel. I saw the angel spread her wings and float backwards from the attack. The Anna’s stormed forward, swinging their swords with amazing precision and amazingly Gabriel was able to keep up with both of them. One Anna swung at the angel’s legs and Gabriel simply flew above it, kicking both the Anna’s away. As soon as the two of them hit the ground, their bodies split into two more Anna’s which got back up on their feet and paraded after Gabriel. Each of the Anna’s had a different weapon, one with a hammer, one with a spear, one with a sword and shield and the last one with two swords. All of them attacked Gabriel and amazingly did well as Gabriel could only block two Anna’s attacks at one time while the other two took her down. The Anna with a spear stabbed forward and was surprised when Gabriel grabbed the spear. She shouted something in her angelic language and the spear exploded into pieces. All of the Anna’s recoiled before Gabriel spread her wings and spun in place, forcing away the Anna clones and reforming the spear.

I got up off my ass and decided to help her by tossing fireballs Gabriel’s way. Some managed to land while Anna kept her assault going. One of the clones stabbed Gabriel’s wings and she screamed before lifting into the air and tossing the Anna right at me. I caught her obviously as best I could but the power behind that throw forced me into the ground, my back scraping against the concrete. OWWWWW by the way. Anna looked at me and smiled, completely unhurt.

“My hero.”

“Not the time Anna!” Koko shouted as I saw her summon a scythe and toss it right at Gabriel. She dodged it of course but Koko leapt onto the hood of a car and stomped on it twice, the hood lifted up and she began to ride through the air on top of it like some kind of skateboard. She sped towards the angel and Joseph backed her up, putting a magic bubble around her. Gabriel stabbed the bubble and the spear broke into pieces. Koko rushed her and grabbed the angels wings, waving her around like a damn white flag and tossing her to a nearby building. The remains of the building fell to the ground hitting a few of the people still just standing around watching this whole thing go down. Joseph tried to protect them all as best he could while protecting Koko, but it was too much for him and he had to drop protecting Koko. She did her best to continue fighting, summoning her scythe and slashing at angel, each attack either being dodged flawlessly or blocked. Gabriel grabbed the scythe and is began to shine a bright golden color before burning away into a white flame. Koko summoned a knife in her hand and tried to stab at Gabriel, blocking the attack with her hands but Koko still managed to draw blood. The blood dripped onto the pavement and hit a car engine below, turning the engine entirely into gold. She grimaced and clutched her hand into a fist, knife still embedded into it, and quickly began to overpower Koko, stepping onto the car hood and bending the girl over backwards and whispering something to her.

Koko Head butted the angel and vaulted over her, crawling onto her back slowly turning the tide of power. She turned the knife into a chained blade and began to wrap the chain part around Gabriel’s neck. It clearly had some effect on her, but she simply flew back and crashed Anna’s back against the building wall. She screamed, and Gabriel pulled the girl off her back and slammed her into the wall again, grabbing her by the collar and turning her eye to me and Anna. Anna had flipped me onto my stomach and began healing the wounds on my back during all of this as fast as she could so I could help out with the fight.

“How long is this gonna take?” I asked her.

“You know I’m bad at healing magic but this shouldn’t take too lo-” Ann was cut off as suddenly the car hood Koko was riding on was tossed right at her, colliding with her body with and knocking her unconscious almost instantly. Neither of us saw it coming and the hood just bounced back to Gabriel’s hands who then spiked Koko to the ground. Joseph conjured giant magic hands to catch her just before she hit the ground and brought her over to me. He then floated off of the ground and glared at Gabriel who still kept that damn innocent smile. He cracked his knuckles and rubbed his hands together, a clearly magical power emanating from them and a cloud of smoke flowing by his feet as he shouted a word in what I think was Germanic? Maybe? Out from the smoke came a massive grey wolf, his body wrapped in chains and muzzle drooling what looked like fire or lava or something and his paws burning the ground with every step. Its eyes were red like a dying sun and its many teeth jagged and broken. Gabriel was unfazed.

“Fenrisulven. I’m surprised one so proud would lower himself to serving a human.” The wolf laughed.

“For survival, sacrifices must be made, Pidgeon.” He charged at her, mouth gaping and practically sucking in the bits and scraps of cars like a tornado before Gabriel stopped him dead in his tracks by grabbing his upper and lower jaw. She showed little struggle as she lifted the wolf over her head and let him crash down onto the pavement behind her. He stood back up and the two began to fight violently with each other. Every bark Fenris made had made the earth shake and every strike she got on gave off an explosion of light. Joseph aided his summon as best he could with lightning from afar, bringing a piece of the building down on her, summoning a barrage of spiritual birds and using them to distract her but she remained skillfully on top of things, never wavering or showing fatigue or surprise at any incoming attack. But Joseph was getting tired and his ability to control Fenris was fading as the wolf began to lose its mind and simply attacked mindlessly, no form of coordination with Joseph and actually being hit by many of his spells as a result. Gabriel summoned two swords in her hands and flew around the wolf at near light speed, every sword strike she made drawing blood and in just a few seconds the wolf had toppled over onto the ground, breathing coarsely and bleeding heavily. He looked towards his summoner for help but Joseph had fallen to the floor, exhausted. Gabriel prepared to stab the beast in his heart, but Joseph used all the strength he could muster to desummon him and she instead slammed into the pavement, her swords glowing with life before dematerializing into thin air.

She looked up at us and once I saw her face, once I looked into her eyes, I felt my blood boil. After all we’d done she still wasn’t even upset. Not a single muscle in her face was frowning. She was just smiling down at us. But this didn’t stop her attack as she rushed towards the both of us, forcing me away from my friend and grabbing him by his shirt collar. He spit in her face and she slammed him into the floor. She summoned a massive fist just above him and brought it crashing down on him. The entirety of the fist as big as he was so he was squished underneath it. At least I thought he was but when she brought the magical fist back up, Joseph had put up a shield around himself and it managed to protect him rather well. She simply smiled at him and brought the fist down again harder. She then raised it and brought it down again. And again. And again. And again and again and again until Joseph's shield was broken once more and he lay unmoving in the small fist sized hole she smashed him into. She turned her gaze to me and I looked at my hands. My mind raced through all the spells I could use. She raised her arms in a hug motion and I responded with lifting two bused cars and slamming them together with that damn pigeon in the middle. I fell to my knees. When I lifted my head she was right there, standing over me. I knew it wouldn’t affect her but… I had to try.

“Heaven. Life free from any and all problems that you humans have here on Earth and you turn it down. Why?”

“The last few minutes or so certainly come to mind.”

“Anything and everything that has happened here today was because you would not listen to me.”

“So, if I killed myself, it would have saved you the trouble of having to kill me yourself?” I glared at her. “Go fuck yourself pigeon.” She still had that kind and forgiving face on. I wanted to punch a hole in that perfect face. She sighed and summoned a spear in her hand.

“If only you could see things my way. Maybe we could have avoided this.” She raised the spear into the air but then a beam of magical energy shot her to the ground.  When she stood back up, her wings looked like they were molting. She was shaky as she got to her feet, using the spear to hold her up until another blast hit her from behind. I could see how the magic was taking a toll on her. Before our attack looked like they weren't doing much of anything but now a bit of her holy appearance was decaying, her wings lost their luster, her face a bit more tired, her halo dimming and resting lower on her head and all of her otherworldly glow fading. She looked up to see two women clad in purple staring her down and then magical chains grabbing at her arms and legs. Gabriel screamed as the magic burned her skin and she struggled against her bonds as they seemed to pull her into the ground. A third woman in purple came and helped me up. Her and her sisters looked almost indistinguishable from each other as they helped me and my friends escape but they had a clearly Irish inspired get up, each of them wearing a skirt that was embroidered with an “M” initial and each had a small knife at their waists. Ah ha ha. Morrigan. That’s who Joseph was calling. The eldest one made sure Gabriel remained in her chains before opening a portal to somewhere safe. The other two came to help me and my friends, one picking up Anna and Koko while the other helped me get Joseph.

“Why do I have to carry two of them?” said one of the triplets picking up Anna and Koko.

“We decided this on the way here. You lost the bet so you gotta carry most of the weight. Now stop complaining and let’s go.” said the second of the triplets.

“You cheated like ya always do! I never win at fidchell!”

“You chose the game! Next time choose somethin’ yer good at!”

“Ladies…” I broke in.

“Just a minute, Jackie boy. Are you sayin’ that I’m bad at fidchell? I’ll have you know that I was taught by Lugh himself!”

“I imagine it was like teaching a dog how to play!”

“Why you little-” It was then that the eldest of the trio slapped the both of them on the back of the head and then pointed towards the open portal. The two feuding sisters glared at each other before the eldest sister growled at them, her eyes briefly glowing purple as we all left into the portal. It was then that Gabriel broke free of her chains and looked up towards the eldest Morrigan sister and simply watched as we left and closed the portal behind us. Better luck next time Gabriel.

*****

Once we got home, I laid everyone down on the medical beds nearby and then climbed onto one myself. The Morrigan sisters did everything they could to heal my friends and that was incredibly painful. For some reason healing magic never feels as good as you may think. It may be magic but it’s just accelerating the body’s healing process in a way that isn’t really healthy. The only reason why they are doing it now is because magical ailments deserve magical treatments. For those of ya wondering who these three might be, these three identical siblings are Badb, Macha, and Nemain. Well I say identical, but they have interesting ways of telling themselves apart. Nemain had short and black spiky hair that just looked dusty. I bet if she shook her head a cloud of dust would puff out. She was the roughest one of the three and stood above both of her sisters at almost 7 feet. Her right eye was a mix of green, red and purple while her right eye was regular brown. Macha was more noticeable of them all. I’m not gonna lie, most of it comes from the fact her chest is bigger than her freaking head…… Alright I’m exaggerating but seriously though this girl is show off with them things on her chest. She had a little crown tattoo on her right breast and her hair was long, brown and curled, tied up into a ponytail but I’m not sure if it was because she was tending to us or because she seriously changes her hairstyle every time I run into her. Her eyes were different colors like Nemain, one the trio of red, green and purple and the other hazel. Badb didn’t have a unique hairstyle. She had a dark blue hair color that was flat ironed and rested just below her butt. Man, she had really long hair. She always wore these thick black gloves on and her eyes… man her eyes. Her right eyes were, of course, the trio but her left always changed colors every time she blinked. Every time.

All of the sisters were dressed in the same Celtic waistcoat, Badb wearing dark blue, Macha wearing green, and Nemain wearing purple and all of them decorated with a Celtic knot at the hip and a tree of life on the back. Badb and Macha wore short tweed and wool made skirts that ended just above the knees. Nemain though wore black wool capris with a small knife at her hip in its hilt. All three of the sisters looked like they came right out of a cosplay convention.

“Ya know when Gabriel healed us it wasn’t - ow - this painful. OW!”

“They’re angels. Angelic magic is different from demon magic which is different from our common magic. Not to mention that healing magic is incredibly difficult to do correctly. If you aren’t an Angel anyway. Plus, natural medicine is better than magic anyway.”

“How is that fair?” Anna said finally coming to along with everyone else.

“The Big Man upstairs wants all his enforcers to be prepared for any scenario. So naturally they are excessively overpowered in terms of magical abilities. At least the head angels are.” Badb said as she wrapped bandages around Joseph’s arm. “We used to know some of the spells but it’s in a very difficult tongue and must be pronounced perfectly. Not to mention it corrupts the mind.”

“So overall bad,” said Macha. The four of us remained quiet for the time being while the sisters bickered back and forth about things and what the best way to heal us would be. I kinda conked out after that. I don’t know what they did and really I don’t care. For some reason hearing Badb and Macha bickering back and forth was soothing.

When I woke up, my friends and I were in a small cafe with a rather small number of folks inside, sipping their coffee, one person eating a muffin of some kind and a group of friends all hanging out together. Any bandages we had disappeared, yet I could still feel them, and the three sisters were all made truly matching, their hair and eye colors, their clothes changed too and now they all were dressed in normal blue jeans and a celtic waistcoat with different colored aprons on. Macha began brewing some coffee for each of us and slipped in just a bit more medicine for each of us.

“So where’s The Boss? We‘ve been meaning to talk to her.”

“She’s out doing managerial stuff.” Badb called from the back.

“So who’s in charge?” Anna asked trying to hold back her laughter. I punched her arm.

“Me of course!” They all said smiling. That smile then turned into confusion and then malice as they began to bicker about who The Boss left in charge. This was going to go on for a while and Anna was laughing like mad. Why does she feel the need to poke the hornets’ nest? Joseph clapped his hands together.

“Ladies! Ladies please! We would really like to talk to The Boss about the stuff that went on today.”

“Well you are going to have to wait till tonight,” they all said in unison. Joseph sighed and took a sip from his coffee.

“So what do we do while we wait? I doubt it’s a good idea to go back outside.” Anna asked. I laid back in my spot and relaxed. The booth was really freaking comfortable and I just couldn’t manage to get up from my spot nor did I really want to.

“Well I don’t know about you guys, but I am tired and I am gonna sit here and relax.” I closed my eyes and smiled as I just listened to the quiet and peaceful jazz playing over the speakers. The sisters came out with plates of food for us and it looked… weird.

“What the hell is this stuff?”

“Colcannon! What, you ain’t had it?” I shook my head. “We make it all the time, how have you not had it?”

“That’s what I said,” Joseph mumbled before taking a bite. I chuckled and took a bite out of it myself………. eh. Not too bad.
Hex Children
I've been trying to write this story for a very long time and just haven't had the time cause of work and now school. But I think I'll be able to make some more stories now that I have a bit more time to myself. This story was difficult on sooooo many levels what with the first person storytelling, modern day stuff, and writing fight scenes. But hey. The only way to get better is to keep trying. So here's my attempt at all of that. I'm thinking of having this b a series but I'm unsure so I'll keep it at one for now. Hope all who read it enjoy!
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Wow. 20 watchers. Just... Wow. It's good to know people actually like the things I write and are interested in seeing more. Yes. I am aware that's not very many but it's a lot to me, okay? I'm sorry posting new stories takes so long but with college and several other things in life taking a lot of my time, it makes it a bit difficult to find the time and energy to write. Don't worry though. Still writing. So I want to thank all of you who are watching me and faving my work. It seriously means a lot. Y'all are the best! 

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7 years later

"You can do better than that Kaius!" Shouted the trainer as he watched Kaius fight. The young prince was locked in a sparring match with his best friend Tyr Highlander, and seemed to be doing well. The two were locked in an intense sword fight but holding back on each other. Kaius swung his sword only for it to be blocked by Tyr's shield pushing the prince back and charging forward and bashing him back with the shield. Kaius kicked Tyr back and swung his sword at his friends’ head who ducked quickly and blocked another attack with his own sword. Kaius was shoved back once more but this time when Tyr came for him, Kaius jumped and kicked Tyr's shield, forcing the young warrior back and leaving him open for attack. Kaius ran forward and slid to the ground, sweeping his leg at Tyr's feet and tripping the man, sending him crashing onto his back. He pointed his sword at his fallen comrade who smiled before kicking the sword out of Kaius' hand. He rolled back onto his feet and lunged his sword forward, scraping against Kaius' armor as he just barely dodged it. Tyr kicked away Kaius' sword and swiped at him, actually managing to scar Kaius just above the eyebrow. Tyr kicked him back and Kaius fell over, losing his shield and the fight as the mentor called it off.

"That is all!" He exclaimed as Kaius dusted himself off. He walked over to the young prince and patted his shoulder before picking up the shield and dusting it off. He called over Tyr and made them look at the shield. "Brilliant fighters the both of you. I would expect nothing less... however-"

"Oh boy," Tyr sighed. "Every time he says that it means we fucked up somehow."

"Speak for yourself. I think I did well," said Kaius, smiling.

"Oh Is that why you lost?"

"I ‘lost’ because I was holding back."

"That’s probably why you have a scratch on your eyebrow now."

"A lucky strike! And a weak one too now that we’re bringing attention to it." He laughed. The mentor called for their attention and had them look at the shield.

"I was going to say you did well however you need to realize that a shield is not just for protection." Tyr scoffed. "You doubt my advice mister Highlander?"

"Only a lot." The mentor smiled.

"Perhaps you would prefer a demonstration over meaningless words, eh?" Tyr raised an eyebrow while the mentor looked at Kaius.

"Go get your sword boy. You need to learn this lesson too." Kaius did as he was told and ran for his sword as the mentor told the both of them to fight him. Kaius and a Tyr looked at each other quizzically before looking at their mentor.

"You sure about this old man?"

"I'm tougher than I look. Come at me. And don't hold back in the slightest. Got it?" The two of them looked at each other again before shrugging and moving in to attack. The mentor was not dressed in any armor and instead wore robes which left him unprotected to any attacks however when Kaius and Tyr descended upon the old man, he blocked nearly every incoming sword swing and dodged those he couldn't. His speed wasn't what you would expect from someone who looked like they were pushing 60 but he managed to place Kaius and Tyr on their asses several times. Tyr sat up and slashed his sword forward, the attack only grazing the shield as he attacked again and again. He kicked the shield which forced the mentor back as he soon protected himself from an underhanded attack to his back by Kaius. This left him open to an attack from Tyr who took advantage and swung his sword at the old man. He ducked just in time and quickly jabbed Tyr in the armpit, the one place he knew the armor didn't protect. Tyr's entire arm felt as if it was going numb and the old man kicked away his sword before before kicking Tyr back and sweeping his leg at Kaius' feet who vaulted over the old man's shield and carried his friend back up. The old man laughed as the both of them prepared themselves for another battle, not willing to give up just yet.

Their mentor smiled smugly as Kaius rushed at the man, his sword striking with swift precision even though every possible attack did nothing but tap metal as each one was blocked. Tyr ran in and jumped over his friend, letting out a ferocious warriors cry as he landed on the old man's shield and forced him to the ground under his weight. The mentor was stunned but not for long as he rolled backwards and set himself back on his feet before being assaulted by Kaius and Tyr at the same time. The both of them were relentless in their attacks and were working together so flawlessly it was as if they were one person. The old man pushed them back before lunging forward and punching Kaius then turning to backhand Tyr with the shield. He soon moved to punch Tyr with the shield edge but Kaius stepped in and shoved the old man aside. Tyr vaulted over his friends back and swung the sword at the old man who dodged out of the way and rushed forward, pushing both Tyr and Kaius back. The old man no longer played passively and moved on to full on offense as he soon struck Tyr's hand with the edge of the shield and jabbed at Kaius with the shield, forcing him to the ground. He quickly got up and grabbed Tyr's fallen sword before spinning like a cyclone at the old man, each attack only hitting the shield before Kaius swung his leg at the man's feet. This maneuver failed at the old man jumped over Kaius' leg and forced him back with the shield before grabbing him by the collar of his armor and throwing him into Tyr, the both of them sent crashing to the ground.

They were both exhausted. Tyr pushed his friend off of him and sat up.

"That doesn't prove anything. You taught us. Of course you would be a better fighter than us."

"The two of you together nearly brought me down several times during that fight. Your attack patterns are far too easy to counter. Today I have learned much about you two. I have trained you since you were children and today showed me something important... you both depend on each other too much." He pointed at Kaius. "You are very passive and defensive. You attack only to set up Tyr and when he fails you go and protect him, foregoing your own safety for his. It is admirable to want to protect your friend and it is always good to play defense, but such a thing can only work for so long. Should your defenses fall, what will you do then?"

"I will fight."

"And you will lose. To be blunt, Young prince, your offensive game is lackluster. If you wish you be king, you must be a perfect balance of sword and shield. Being exclusively one or the other spells disaster for the city."

"This city is already a disaster if you ask me." Tyr mumbled.

"Nobody asked you! And speaking of you mister Highlander," he pointed at the boy. "You need to work on your defense. Your strikes are strong, I’ll give you that, but that is not nearly enough. You never protect yourself in battle. A terribly unwise tactic.”

“My plan is always to bring my opponent down before they can bring me down.”

“And it makes you terribly predictable.” Tyr sighed. “Anyone with half a brain will know that evasion is the best course of action and defense is the next best thing when fighting you. You will see soon enough, child. Just you wait.” The old man removed his shield and placed it next to Kaius. "But that will be all for today. The both of you go rest up and we'll continue tomorrow." Kaius and Tyr groaned and simply collapsed onto the floor from exhaustion. Their mentor laughed. He dusted himself off before catching eye of the Queen as she walked over from the palace to greet them.

"Queen Elan. Always a pleasure to see you." Kaius sat up and was surprised to see his mother who kneeled by him and hugged him.

"Mom? What are you doing here?" She smiled.

"I came to see you for a bit before I left."

"She's leaving?" Tyr asked.

"She said she was going over to her sister’s house in Ravens Borough."

"She's going all the way over there? Isn't that a bit... dangerous?"

"Tyr is right," said the old man. "It is awfully dangerous to leave the boundaries of the city. And with little protection at that. The King can't exactly give many guards."

"Three is enough for me and I am sure I will be fine. We will draw as little attention as we can. I won't be dressing in my fancy royal robes and we won't be traveling by horse."

"Sounds time consuming.”

"Anything to minimize any problems. May be a while before I return," she said rustling Kaius' hair. "But I will return nonetheless. Be safe and make sure your father gets out. Sometimes he can get a little stir crazy staying in that palace all day. Take care of him for me while I'm gone."

"Of course. I was thinking about going to see him anyway." Elan smiled and kissed Kaius' head before saying her goodbyes and leaving for the city gate. Kaius had gotten up and walked to the barracks where he gotten himself dressed in his normal clothes and left to the palace where his father was resting. He spoke with the servants and they each told him that the King wasn't doing much better. Kaius' father had been hit with a strange illness that weakened his lungs and heart. It came in the dead of night and was something no one had ever seen before. The sickness made him look older than he already was, pushing his age up to nearly 80 despite being 57. He had a terrible cough, each one sounding worse than the last and one time he said he felt like his heart had stopped. The only thing that seemed to keep it at bay was moving around but that was getting harder and harder to do. Kaius poked his head into the room. He saw his father on his back and almost asleep before he opened his eyes and saw his son. A smile crawled across his face.

"Kaius..." was all he could muster. The young prince walked up to his father and sat by his bedside. The King groaned as he sat himself up, his son saying he didn't have to but he nonetheless did. King Kaius looked... ech. He was not a person you could stand to look at for long. His nails had grown to the length of swords, thick and yellow and his hair was like a crow’s nest. Worse. It was like a polar bear was permanently glued to his head. The length of his hair reached down to his feet and covered his face and every time he exhaled, the hair in his face blew out of the way for a second before resting back in front of his mouth. His skin had more wrinkles than the oldest tree had rings on its trunk. His face was so wrinkled that his eyes stayed shut even when he tried his hardest to open them. Even if he could open them he would get nothing but a view of his grey hair. His bones felt softer than wet paper and nearly every move he made hurt him, but he didn't dare look so weak in front of his subjects.

"How was training today?" The King asked, his voice sounding as if it was being dragged against sandpaper.

"It went well. Ha. The old man taught us that using a shield is just as important as using the sword. He kicked our asses but Tyr thinks he just got lucky." The king laughed before coughing.

"I bet he did," he said before coughing again. "Your mother said she knew you would like him. I remember going toe to toe with him myself just to test his skills. He blocked every single damn attack I could toss out. His game has always been outlasting an opponent rather than over power them. Ha ha ha. I've only managed to beat him once and never again after that." Kaius leaned in.

"How'd you do it? Ya never know when that information might be useful." The King chuckled.

"Nice try. It'll never work out. Ilor is very good at adapting to the situation. Should you strike him once, he switches his style in a way so that makes it so you never tag him like that ever again." The King coughed. “I would give anything for a skill like that.” He spoke with a very tired voice. One weighed down by past mistakes and wasted time, hated memories and pitiful actions. "I wonder everyday what I could have accomplished if I had that..." Kaius bumped his fist with his dad’s hand.

"Careful there. Soon you'll start to sound like an old man." The King laughed then started to cough again.

"You're-you're right. Sorry." Kaius smiled.

"Ma is gone ya know."

"Yeah. Yeah she came and told me before she left. I gave her the best guards I could spare."

"Well while she's gone, she told me to make sure that you get up and move around. Can't have ya laying in this bed the entire time." The King groaned but still had a smile on his face.

"I'll be fine."

"Ah ah ah. I ain't taking no for an answer. Come on. Let's get you movin." Kaius helps his father climb out of bed and did his best to hold him up. They both took a few steps before the King began to walk alone, each step making him wince in pain.

"Fuck, it’s like walking on nails."

"You need a cane or something?"

"No! No," he said nearly falling over. He clenched his fists and his breathing accelerated. "If I get one of those, I'll be relying on it my entire life. Or what's left of it..."

"Stop talking like that."

"Kaius, my boy, I think it's time we face facts." He coughed violently. "There's nothing that can be done. I'm not gonna be around for much longer."

"Dad-"

"It's true and we both know it." He leaned against the wall for a bit before standing on his own for a moment. "I don't know how long I have left, but I need... I need you to be prepared for the day I won't wake up. We both know it's coming."

"Unless we find a cure before it's too late." The King grabbed his sons arm and made him look at him. He pushed the hair out of his eyes to reveal blood red eyes, the veins in them almost pulsating with either anger or just from the sickness. It was almost sickening to look at but Kaius forced himself to meet his father’s gaze.

"Boy, stop this." Even in his current state, the King sounded ready to tear a man's head off. "There is no curing me. There is no saving me. There is nothing that can be done. And even if by some grace of Zara I was cured tomorrow, I am very old. Too old to lead these people. They need a young face. A fresh face. And I am neither of those." Prince Kaius tried to reply before his father silenced him. "I don't want to hear it!" He let go of his son. "That is all that can and will be said of this issue." Prince Kaius sighed.

"I fear you're being closed minded, father." King Kaius laughed.

"You sound just like your mother."

"Well someone's gotta." They both laughed as they finally reached the backdoor to the palace and when the opened it, they saw the beautiful blooming garden that grew right behind the palace. It was a truly beautiful sight. Roses and daffodils, sunflowers and lavender lilies, daisies and orchids and especially lotus'. The garden was truly the only attractive thing in Blackwood. It took work to make this. A lot of work. And it took even more to keep it this perfect. Both Kaius’ walked through the forest and simply took in the atmosphere. King Kaius stood as still as stone, feeling the slight breeze blow against his skin.

“Kaius...” said the smiling King.

“Yeah?”

“I want you to know something.” Prince Kaius looked at his father. “If you are to succeed, you need to have allies. Friends. Brothers and sisters in arms. Even if it’s just one. Someone is better than none at all.” The prince stood next to his father and looked out over the garden.

“Who were your friends?” The King laughed.

“Until I met your mother, none. Not a lot of people wanted to be associated with the ‘King of the Dead’.” He spat out the last few words, the memories of this dad past crawling up his spine like a spider and worming their way into his head again. After all the years he still hated that name.

“Not gonna lie dad… that name sounds kinda cool.” The King smiled even though deep down he still felt grief. He looked at his son and patted his shoulder.

“If only you knew how I got that title. Wouldn’t be too cool then.” The King turned away. "Well let's continue the walk shall we. I can feel my bones tightening just standing here." He started to shuffle away while Prince Kaius remained just a bit longer to take in the tranquility of the garden. It was... quiet.

*****

Elan felt uncomfortable in her rags. She wasn't used to wearing anything that wasn't her royal robes but she realized that safety was the biggest issue in this country. She needed to look as inconspicuous as possible. The three guards with her wore similar rags but held swords under them just in case any issues arose. The road from Blackwood to the minor village of Ravens Borough was clear cut but went through the dangerous and immensely dense forest that remained between them. It was the only way into and out of Blackwood thought and with all of the craziness that surrounds the country with everyone fighting everyone, she needed to be sure if her sister was okay. She had sent several messengers but none returned. You may be wondering why she would choose to go herself since the messengers didn't make it. They wore the traditional royal messengers garb which made them stand out as clearly important characters. No other person would be the messenger after the first two disappeared so Elan had to go herself. They had to get by several thieves and thugs that just leeched off of the territory and its people. All seemed well so far.

"My Queen, I'm not sure this was the best course of action to take."

"And what, pray tell, would you say is the best?" The guard didn't respond. "If I can't get someone to do something for me, then I'm going to have to do it myself."

"But Queen Elan-"

"When I need your opinion, I’ll ask for it." This silenced him quickly while Elan began to mumble herself, thinking critically on what the guard said. Perhaps... he was correct. Maybe they should head back. She would have thought more about it before part of her rags got caught on a tree branch and soon ripped when she pulled it, revealing more of her upper leg than she wanted.

"Agh! Dammit!"

"At least we may fit in more with the peasantry." Elan wanted to curse at him but he spoke truth so she bit her tongue and continued onward. The forest looked as if it was a rotting corpse. It looked grotesque and the trees were an unhealthy grey. It was as if all of time in the forest was frozen as birds were heard flying but none were seen, bushes rustled and owls hooted but, again, nothing was ever seen. There were times where eyes could be seen but you could blink and whatever was there was gone. The roots of the trees didn't dig into the ground but rather they stuck out of the ground and attached themselves to the bushes and you could actually see them moving. They pulsated, like ones neck does when gulping down gallons of water. They sapped the life from the surrounding shrubbery like a vampire would. The air was dead, like smoke coveted the face and lungs of the occupants. It was impossible to get through without feeling as if your lungs were going to ignite. But the most noticeable thing had to be the sun. It was nonexistent. The grey leaves blotted out the sun perfectly and gave a permanently cold atmosphere as well as giving the impression that it was midnight. Add this forest to the list of reasons why no one likes to come to Blackwood.

Fits of coughing littered through the four travelers as they soon began to run through the smoke filled forest. They couldn't keep their eyes open long enough to see where they were going as they kept tripping on the way towards the exit. Their senses betrayed them as the trees groaned as if someone was being stabbed, leaves and bushes rustled and crows were heard cawing.

"Keep running! Don't stop for anything!" Elan shouted though whether the guards could hear her was questionable. When they finally burst out of the forest their rags now covered in soot, they noticed that one of them was gone. Three guards dropped to two.

"Where is Alix?"

"Last I saw him he was right behind us."

"You left him behind?" Shouted one of the guards.

"I didn't see you stop to help him!"

"If I had known I would have!"

"Fucking liar! You would have left him to suffer without a second thought!"

"Hey!" Elan exclaimed. "Both of you shut up! What could have been done is irrelevant. Alix is gone. What matters most is that we made it through the forest." She looked forward and saw the minor village of Raven's Borough. She gave an exhausted sigh and walked towards the village. The two guards looked at each other.

"Shouldn't we go back to try and rescue Alix?"

"You wanna go back in there?" They both looked at the grey and smoking forest and one of them swore that he heard a voice calling them back in. But it was far from a cry for help. It was something much more bone chilling. They both shuddered and agreed that going back in was a stupid idea. If Alix was still in there, he would be dead soon. Cruel to say but there is no sugar coating it. They both chased after the Queen, remaining by her side in a way that was still escorting her but also sticking to her side for protection.

Raven’s Borough wasn’t at all like Blackwood. The plant life was green blooming, vibrant and singing. That’s not metaphor either. If you got close enough to the plants you could actually hear them singing. They had Roses, Lilies and Lavenders. The roses sung a sonorous low tone that made ones skin crawl with blissful admiration for the intensity of it. The Lilly’s gave a soft soprano that warmed one’s heart while the Lavenders gave off a tenor tone, all of them growing ecstatic when a gardener came and watered them. Elan smiled and wiped some of the dirt off her face before approaching the gardener.

“Olara?” The woman turned around. She was a fairly thin woman, bronze skinned and black haired with braids that went down the length of her back before just ending above her behind. Her pecan colored eyes widened as she saw her fair skinned sibling.

“Sister!” She hugged her tightly, an obvious smile shining off her face like light off of the Ocean. The two of them remained in a tight embrace for a while before Olara guided her sister and her guards into her home. It was nothing special, a simply little brown and white painted hovel that housed a few plants in it to add some color. She had a small pet that walked up and licked her hand, barking cutely. Olara pet the little beast and Elan gave a small gasp of shock. The pet acted like a simple pet dog but looked nothing of the sort. He had bright purple eyes and a coat design that one moment looked green and brown before shifting to pink and blue. It constantly changed, almost looking like a rainbow at times.

"Still living in this small hut are you?" Elan quipped while Olara brought a small glass of herbal teas over to her sister and even made some for the guards who thanked her.

"Queen Elan and her sister look nothing alike." Whispered one of them.

"Perhaps they are not really sisters."

"Maybe the queen is adopted."

"Maybe her sister is adopted."

"Maybe you two need to speak quieter," said the Queen sternly. Olara smiled at the guards who cleared their throats and sipped from the glasses nonchalantly.

"To answer your question before, not everyone can afford to live in a castle, Ms. Queen." The two of them chuckled. "Speaking of the castle, how is everyone? I've heard that things are... falling apart."

"Yeah. Things aren't the best in Blackwood."

"They never seem to be." Olara interrupted.

"The city is practically dead at this point. It's sad to say but there is nothing Kaius and I can do to make the city any better. And no one seems fit to help us. All the land we did have was taken away by bigger and stronger provinces or simply just left us behind since we couldn't really stop them. Remember when this place used to be a part of Blackwood?" Olara smiled as she looked out the window of the house to the dark forests in the distance.

"I remember that clearly. The city seemed... really shitty." She laughed and Elan punched her arm. "I'm sorry but Blackwood's poor status was just seeping over. Like a sickness. Everything connected to that poor place was like a wounded dog. Just put it to sleep. Save it from the misery." Olara’s dog whined and backed away before being pet on the head. “Not you boyo! You’re too perfect.” Elan was working together and argument in her head but I just wasn’t easy to debate what her sister said.

"But enough about that bull. I haven't seen you in years. How's baby Kaius?" Olara asked taking a sip from her tea glass. Elan breathed in then out.

"Not a baby anymore. He's much older."

"Really? I haven’t seen him since he was 2. Is he... I mean with the city all old and whatnot is gonna be possible for him to still gonna be King?" Elan closed her eyes and took a drink from her glass again before sighing. She didn't know how to answer. She didn't want to answer because she didn't like to say it. But...

"He might not be for long." There was a silence. The guards had even started to listen.

"What do you mean?"

"There has to be a total of maybe... 300 people left in the city? Not nearly enough people to make an army of and more and more are trying to leave. Kaius and the people there might have to dissolve the place and move everyone to a safer district." Olara frowned.

"He's not gonna like that."

"Prolonging suffering is wildly unfair to his subjects."

“I wouldn’t say they’re suffering,” Olara began. “Just not happy.” Elan took a sip from her glass before a scream was heard outside. Everyone in the room froze before one of the guards went to the window and looked outside. Immediately an arrow flew through the open curtains and stuck the guard right in the eye. He fell to the ground quickly, already dead before hitting the ground and once he did, his comrade and Olara screamed. The guard calmed himself and ran to the window, not opening it but holding his sword and telling the queen and her sister to hide. Elan flipped the table over and used it for cover and pulled her sister and her dog behind it. The guard grabbed his fallen partners sword and soon the room was infiltrated by a Feraci, Fox like in appearance dressed in tribal rags and clothing. He held a long spear and had white face paint on, his face scrunched up into s snarling position as he burst into the room. He turned around and saw the guard with his back against the wall and lunged his spear forward. The guard dodged it and swung one of his sword at the spear, slicing it in half and then swung his other sword at the Feraci who ducked under the attack and swept his leg at the guards feet.

From behind the table, Olara’s dog growled and his fur pattern changed red as he ran forward and bit the Feraci’s tail. The fox screamed and tried to pull his tail away before being stabbed through the stomach by the guard. He had a look of shock on his face before he fell to the ground with a heavy thud. The dog wagged it’s tails and panted happily.

“Good boy. My Queen! We must go! Now!” The guard shouted. Elan got up and brought her sister and her dog with them as they left the house and began make a break for the stables. Surely there were horses or something to get them out of the city. As they ran through the village, the houses soon began to ignite and smoke crossed over the sky, the fires soon touching the grass and burning just about anything and everything nearby. One of the Feraci attackers had thrown their spear an the guard which stabbed through his leg and brought him to his knees. Elan turned around to help him before she was grabbed by another Feraci. The two of them wrestled for dominance but he was coming out on top quite easily. He was so close. So aggressively close to her that she could feel his breath. It smelled of rotten meat and musky air. It made her feel unclean and made her skin crawl. She fought as hard as she could to shake him off before kneeing him in the stomach and then biting his neck. When he backed away in pain, she grabbed the sword and held it high before crashing it down with all her might directly onto his skull, cracking it open like an egg. The blood splattered across her clothes and her face and she screamed in emotional turmoil. She let go of the sword and did her best to gather herself while Olara went to the guards side and pulled the spear out of his leg.

The guard wasn’t doing too well as when Olara held him up, he couldn’t put much pressure on his leg and relied on her to hold him. But she was nowhere near strong enough to hold him up. Especially with all that armor adding to the weight.

"Elan! I need help over here!" she screamed to her sister but she was lost in her own world. Elan was freaking out as she teetered back and forth, her legs uneasy and her eyes shifting around the burning landscape. Her heart felt as if it was going to leap out of chest and the blood on her face almost burned. She began to shiver violently as if she were left in the middle of a snow storm.

"Elan! Snap out of it!" Olara shouted but to no avail. It wasn’t safe out here. She commanded her dog to wake her up and he ran up to her bit her legs lightly. Elan jumped and kicked the dog who whimpered loudly and scurried away from her. It was then Elan snapped out of her trance and apologized.

“Feel sorry later! We have to go! Help me get him up!" Elan quickly pet the dog she had hurt, to which he yipped happily, before she helped Olara carry the guard to stables. When they got there however, the stables were already set ablaze with the horses inside it burning alive, their helpless neighs echoed to the skies, the smell of burning flesh and horse meat corrupting the already sickening air. With their only way out now going up in smoke, the three of them were at a loss of what to do. With the smoke getting more and more thick, there only solution was to simply run. Run as fast as their legs could carry them out of the burning village, sadly having to ignore the cries for help they heard and simply escape the city boundaries. When they escaped, the guard was barely hanging on by a thread, so they slowed down and lay him on the ground.

They were on a path that would eventually lead them to the province of Tynesire. It was spacious with nothing but grassy plains along the path. Suddenly they all heard Olara’s pet release a powerful scream as he fell over onto his side unmoving, an arrow sticking out of his stomach.

“Kyne!” Olara shouted before being struck in the chest by another arrow. Elan looked behind her but didn’t even get to see her assailants before an arrow struck her in the eye. She felt her entire body go cold in less than a second as she hit the floor with weightless care. It was so sudden she didn’t even feel the impact.

*****

"Prince Kaius!" Said one of the palace servants. "Please wake up!" Kaius sat up and wiped his eyes clean before looking at the servant, their eyes red with tears and clutching his hand.

"What? What is it? What happened?"

"It’s your father! He’s not waking up!" Kaius’ eyes widened and he jumped up from his bed and ran as fast as his legs could carry him. He burst into his father’s room and simply saw him lying there, eyes closed and in a sleeping position. He ran over and nudged his father.

"Dad? Dad wake up." He kept shaking him and began to do so more vigorously. "Dad! Dad!" He kept shouting. But he would not wake. Kaius leaned his ear closer to his father’s mouth, hopefully to hear his breathing but there was again nothing. Prince Kaius could do nothing but cry. Cry tears for the man who raised him, the man who gave him guidance, loved him only the way a Father could and always made time for him even in his later hours of life. Kaius... he simply held his father’s unmoving hand and cried. An indescribable amount of despair came over his heart, so much so he thought he might die himself. Kaius cried until the coming of the sun where he was finally approached by the palace servants and ushered to bury his father. He refused and instead asked for his cremation to which they agreed to. The day was quiet. Kaius didn’t say an entire word the whole time. They were prepared to start when, just before the funeral rites began, a child came running in shouting "The Queen! The Queen! King Kaius we have found the Queen!” The boy was accompanied by two civilians carrying a carpet who lay it down by Kaius and opened it, revealing the bloodied, scarred and bruised body of his mother. He nearly vomited. He could barely look at her. One glance was all he needed before he ordered her to lay next to his father and the cremation began. He could almost hear their voices as they lay in the fire. It messed with his mind. But he dared not leave.

Long after everything was done, Kaius returned to the palace and simply sat on the throne. He approached by his friend Tyr who simply walked up and knelt. Kaius sighed.

"I know this isn’t the best time to say this but... the city needs you, Kaius."

"I know,” he said grimly. He had so much circling in his head that he didn’t know what else to say. He was surprised that he was able to get that out.

“This province is a shit show.”

“No argument there.” Tyr mumbled.

“We struggle to protect our own kind. People grow sick, others are killed... this city is on the verge of collapsing onto itself.”

“So what are we gonna do?”

“Well what would you do?”

“I’m not the King, Kaius.”

“No but you are the King’s best friend and I value your opinion.” Tyr smiled slightly and thought for a bit.

“I don’t know what you could do Kaius. I would personally talk to the people. Tell them the truth. If they stay, they stay. If they don’t, maybe the city truly is a lost cause.” Kaius sighed and thought for a bit. A long bit.

“Gather the citizens. I have a speech to give.” Tyr nodded and walked out of the palace to gather as many of the people he possibly could and brought them to Kaius who took off his crown. Kaius didn’t know what to do to help the people of Blackwood. And he told them this. He was willing to sell the land off. And he told them this. But lastly he knew that there were some people who could not stay in the city longer. And he offered them the choice to leave. Some took it and left on the spot while other remained. Blackwood wasn’t much but it was their home. They were staying until the absolute end, King or no King. Kaius could only smile. He dismissed them and then called for all the guards.

"I need all of you to defend this city with your life. Tyr and I are leaving for a bit."

“We are?" Tyr asked.

"Yes we are. I need to see someone special who I think can help us."

"We will do all we can. But do return soon my King. I am unsure if the people will like hearing the fact that their King is gone so quickly after getting the crown." said one of the guards.

"I will try and return as fast as I can. But if we are going to make it, we need help. Come on." He said as he began walk with his friend to the southernmost part of the cities boundaries. It wasn’t a place that a lot of Merians went. In fact it wasn’t a place any of the Merians went. Technically speaking, Blackwood once belonged to the Weichan until it was taken during a rather brutal war that ended with the Merian’s taking the city. Stories say that the head God of the Weichan religion cursed the land so that it would forever have difficulty growing any food or supplying any clean water. Merians are stubborn though which is why they still haven’t left.

They came up to a massive cave that seemed almost completely dark and empty. Vines dropped over the entrance and made it even more difficult to ascertain.

“King Kaius!” Cried a woman’s voice from in the cave. She walked out completely clad in a wonderful red gown that when seen right in the light that came from the cave made the clothing see through, revealing her practically naked body to the two men in front of her.

“I was wondering when you would come to my precious hovel. Welcome to Red Witches Hold. Do come in. It’s nice and warm.” She said turning away. Tyr looked at his friend with pursed lips but Kaius simply smiled and walked in.

“Make yourself comfortable however you please. Linen! Fix something up for them please!” She said as her shadow crawled from underneath her and began to fix food. The shadow itself still crawled over the environment like a shadow would. It didn’t really have a touchable body but you could still see various pots and ingredients moved around by this shadow even though it looked like nothing was really touching them. Kaius was impressed while Tyr was disgusted.

“So what brings you here. How are you?” She sat down in a nearby chair and then motioned a chair closer to Kaius who sat down smiling. Tyr refused to sit and simply stood there, arms crossed and looking down on the scarlet sorceress. She said nothing to him and instead kept her attention on Kaius.

“We have an issue in Blackwood.”

“I bet,” she said smiling. Linen had come and provided Kaius with a drink of Mex, a powerful alcohol in Meria that he refused outright.

“Thank you but I don’t drink.”

“It’s common courtesy to accept the beverage provided by houseguests.”

“I’m not a very courteous person these days.” She smiled at him.

“You’re a terrible liar.” He smiled back. “So again I ask why are you here?” Kaius leaned forward.

“I need your help.”

“Ooooh,” She said beginning to laugh.

“To be more specific, I need your magic.”

“And what for pray tell?”

“My city needs supplies. Food, weapons, and clothes but the only way to do it is to take it.” Tyr and Seidr looked shocked while Kaius sat back in his chair. “The other tribes aren’t something to scoff at. Some even banded together and became full fledged cities. We can’t contend with that. However we do have something that they don’t. Magic.” Kaius smiled and Seidr looked at him with a raised brow.

“You... want magic on your side?”

“Yes.”

“Kaius-“ Tyr was cut off before he could say anything.

“So I’m willing to make a deal. Work with me and help me conquer the other tribes and I will grant you one request no matter what it is.” Seidr looked shocked. And Tyr was the exact same. He looked about ready to slap the back of Kaius’ head. Feeling the heat of his friends gaze, Kaius stood from his chair and excused himself.

“Think it over and I’ll be back in just a moment.” Kaius and Tyr walked out of the cave and into the surrounding woods, just out of earshot of the scarlet sorceress.

“Are you out of your mind?” Tyr was absolutely livid.

“I feel fine.”

“Making a deal with a mage is damn near suicide Kaius.”

“When was the last time you spoke with a mage?”

“They have oppressed us for years! Magic has been the enemy of our people for generations.”

“And I am going to use the very thing we have despised and ostracized for years to help me gain power and fix my home!” Tyr sighed. “I understand your fear. I’m scared too. But we can’t fight people with in our pathetic state of power. We need to even the playing field and the best way to do it is to cheat the rules a little bit.”

“I’m still not happy with it,” Tyr said as he crossed his arms.

“Good. I need someone I can trust to keep an eye on her. Mages are tricksy. We’ve heard the stories and read the books. We need her on our side. Kaius looked back at the cave and saw Seidr begin to walk out. “No matter the risk.” Tyr grit his teeth looking at the woman but held his tongue and nodded in agreement nonetheless. Seidr invited them back in and her and Kaius discussed specifics.

“I’m willing to help you... but we need to lay down some rules. Just so I have an idea as to what you need from me and what I can do.”

“I am the King of Blackwood. That means you follow what I say without question. If I ask you to do something, you do it. If Tyr asks you to do something, you do it.” Seidr looked at Tyr who angrily tutted air out of his nose.

“If he asks me to do something stupid, I’m not doing it,” she said simply.

“If you have a problem with his commands, talk to me and I’ll bring forth a compromise.” She agreed to that. “You are to teach magic to people you think would benefit from it and people I choose. Which includes myself.” Tyr glanced at his friend but kept his mouth shut. Seidr smiled.

“Ooooh. Interested in Magic are we? Ha ha ha ha! Alright. I can teach you a few spells. Not gonna be easy though.”

“I don’t care.”

“You wanna learn some spells too Tyr?”

“As if,” he scoffed.

“What a shame. You’d make a handsome wizard.” She gave a coy smile and turned her attention back to Kaius. “I want to be treated like a full member of the city. Any discrimination of any kind needs to be dealt with.”

“Please. In our hell hole, they’ll worship you like royalty. We’ve always had an admiration for magic. Well... all minus my Father,” Kaius said softly. Seidr leaned forward.

“How is daddy Kaius by the way? Ain’t heard from him in a while.”

“He’s dead.” Her eyes widened and she leaned back into her chair.

“Oh my god. I’m so sorry.”

“Don’t worry about it.” Kaius still mourned the loss of his father and remembered when his dad told him to never play with magic. But this was for the good of his home. For his people. Warnings be damned. He needed Seidr.

“Back to the matter at hand. No magical testing on civilians. I don’t know what the hell you mages do but keep the mind controlling spells or other enslavement nonsense out of the city boundaries.”

“Then where am I supposed to find these subjects?”

“Prisoners of war are yours to do as you please.” She smiled at this. “Tyr gets first pick though.” She frowned. “No messing with the dead, it’s against our religion, no diseases, sicknesses or plagues, and if you need ingredients for something, tell one of the guards or servants and they will get it for you.”

“Don’t trust me to find my own ingredients?”

“More like I care too much to lose you.” Seidr smiled.

“Oh Kaius. So kind of you.” she took a sip of her drink and looked over Tyr who refused to meet her eye.

“Do we have a deal?” He asked holding out his hand. She stuck out her tongue and shook his hand.

“I believe we do.” She looked ecstatic to be a part of this little mission Kaius was undergoing.

“Should I come over now or you wanna let your little band of poor people know first?” Kaius smirked at her.

“I would prefer now. The sooner, the better after all.” She stood up and called her shadow back to its place under her feet.

“Well then let’s get to work.” Kaius and Tyr waited outside of the cave while she gathered all of her things, the two of them debating about where she would stay since she was moving into the city. Tyr chastised Kaius for seemingly going about things without thinking but Kaius patted his friends shoulder and simply told him to trust him. Seidr walked out with a small pack filled with everything she would need from her home and was dressed in a much less revealing red robe with a hood covering her head. Her eyes shined a glorious amber and she looked at Kaius with a kind hearted smile on her face.

“Lead the way, my King.”
Chronicles of Alvarys: Kaius Silverblade Chapter 2
Ah man I love fantasy. Back with Kaius again and his journey. Getting some new allies, making some rules, and thus Kaius' story continues. Hope all who read this enjoy!
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It was a simple night like it always was. The sky was clear, not a cloud anywhere to be found and the moon bigger than it had ever been. There was an air of mysticism that you could almost feel but it was just illusive enough to evade feeling. This suit was very stuffy. I felt every part of me sweat profusely but then again that may have just been because of nervousness. I was scared out of my mind. Was my breath good? Did I smell good? Was there something in my teeth? Should I take my glasses off? Should I leave them on? Is the flower too much? Should I have gotten a corsage instead? Do I look weird? Is the suit too big for me? This feels too big for me. Ah the sweating is getting worse! My friend patted me on the shoulder and gave me a grin. It calmed me more than I thought it would. He wrapped his arm around my shoulder and walked with me inside, laughing vibrantly. He was clearly excited. The school dance was something he wouldn’t shut up about all week. We walk inside and the room is wonderfully darkened with brief strobes of light coming from the ceiling, people all standing around and talking to each other with light music playing in the background. The DJ there had on glasses and headphones and looked very into his music. Everyone completely crowded the area, but it still looked like there was plenty of room for more to join the dance floor. My friend walked me through the crowd and when we reached the center of the floor, there she was. She simply stood there in the spotlight, hands clasped together and looking around. She waited there for me. The most beautiful girl in school was waiting for me. The curls in her hair looked so perfect and her bronze skin looked so smooth, her eyes so beautiful and the look on her face one of worry. I kept her waiting! How could I-


“Go and talk to her numbskull.” My friend pushed me forward and I burst through the crowd and met face to face with her. Her lips curved into a smile and so did mine as I presented my flower, my hand shaking like I had been struck by lightning. She touched the flower... then touched my hand and held it tightly. Her hand was so soft. I wasn’t shaking after that. She looked up at me and put the small flower in her hair. I didn’t know what to say about how beautiful she looked so I just stood there like an idiot with that stupid smile on my face. She laughed and thanked me. The DJ stopped the current song and then switched it to something... peppy. Something light and gentle but also kinda ghostly. It gave a musical essence that I simply could not put into words. Mostly because all my attention had soon transitioned to her... she was the essence of perfection in my eyes. The single most important thing in my world. The lights of the place dimmed into the lightest of shades and a thin fog had layered itself over the floor. Everything had a spectacular look to it, like it was there but only barely so. She looked me in the eyes and came closer to me. She grabbed my hands she placed them on her hips before wrapping her arms around my neck. Standard dancing position. Things were slow, a soft swaying side to side until she rested her head on my chest. I was nervous she might hear how fast my heart was beating but after a while... I just didn’t care. She was all I could see. All I could feel. All I cared for and everything that was fantastic about the world to me. That may sound like the lamest thing ever but shut up and let me have my moment okay?


When the song finished she kept her head on my chest and didn’t move at all, the both of us still swaying to the tune of a polyphony that wasn’t even playing. I heard her humming the song in her angelic voice and that was all I needed, her voice never missing a beat and the two of us never pulling away. When she stopped, she looked up at me with those perfect eyes and whispered something that I couldn’t hear. I asked her to repeat but she simply smiled. I was confused until she closed her eyes, puckered her lips and leaned in. I instantly got the picture. I had never done this though. This was my first. How do you kiss someone? What if I do it wrong? What if-No. no. I’m not talking myself out of this one. I took a deep breath and closed my eyes and, with my hands still on her hips, pulled her in close. I could feel her breath was as rushed as my own, her chest rising and falling like she was hyperventilating. It made me feel a bit calmer cause she was nervous too, but it also made me even more nervous. My heart was pounding against my chest like it wanted to break out of some cage, but I steeled my nerves and leaned in closer. Almost there…


Beep beep beep beep


Hmm? What? No! Aww man it was a dream? Noooo! It felt so real! Agh! I groaned in my bed and grabbed at the pillow beneath my head, tossing it across the room. I don’t wanna get up. I just feel so defeated. Like… The girl I had been thinking about asking out for months now my mind decided to play a stupid little trick on me and give me a dream of something I never had the nerve to do. That’s so not-

Ding!

Oh. My phone. I sat up out of bed and looked at it and saw that it was… Wait… I know this number...

“Hey! I know it’s early but I just wanted to say thanks for last night. I had a lot of fun and I hope you did too. Just a thought but I think it would be cool if we hung out at lunch or something, ya know? Talk a bit. If you have time of course. See you at school!”

Last night? What happened last - wait… that dream wasn’t just a dream was it?
Digital Love
Another story inspired by listening to a specific song and writing what comes to mind, similar to Seattle. In this case it was Daft Punk's Digital Love. I love that song so much and just thought this was a nice little story to write about it. I am pretty proud of this story. Hope all who read it enjoy!
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Pride

I AM PROUD

Made with pride by the DeviantArt community BROWSE ALL ART

Well...... the time has come. I suppose I should talk now about all the things of 2016 I will miss. All the things I enjoyed that I wish would stick around. Talk about the sorrowful things that have encompassed the world and taken over my emotions... well I'm not going to. Despite the fact the common consensus about 2016 is bad, I'm choosing to remember the year in a more positive light because at least I am around to see its end.

I started my Senior year and saw several friends of mine go off into the wide world of adulthood and make of their lives whatever they wanted. I saw my sister for the first time in a long while and got to chill with her watching Suicide Squad for the third time and just enjoying the time with her. I got to speak in a giant debate at school and actually felt like my voice was being heard. I celebrated my best friend Alex's birthday and enjoyed the time we spent as pals. Our bowling team is done and we are moving on to better things. Where the road goes for him I have no idea but I pray it is good. I was introduced to the amazing Persona series that stole my heart several times and continues to do so with that delay to April. I celebrated my 17th birthday on March 4th and went with my girlfriend to see my favorite movie ever Zootopia. Such a good movie. I spent the summer traveling the country with my parents and had a magnificent experience going to Mt.Rushmore, Also Niagra Falls, almost getting stuck in Canada, going to New York, traveling down to Louisiana to visit family, going to California to visit more family, almost burning because of the intense heat and finally coming back home to the cool land of Seattle. I wrote several stories I am proud of and posted them to this very site and gained new followers. Thanks by the way. I finally got a chance to understand what goes into a Presidential election and all the rules that apply to it. Knowledge is always a plus. I hung out with my friend Cheng-Hua for her birthday and saw her subsequently get ingrossed in several new mobile games from Miitomo to A horse app of some kind to a Cat App she loves to play with and Pokémon Go. I've laughed with her and many of my other friends with the new anime's she is always watching and the always funny Jojo's bizarre adventure. I've helped hurt friends feel better, been a shoulder to cry on for others, a calm person to talk to and fun to be around. At least I hope I'm fun to be around. I've also celebrated a marvelous 5 year anniversary with my beloved girlfriend whom I call Ember who is the inspiration for everything I do. I celebrated her birthday with her, had all kinds of lovers spats and emotional moments with her and whatnot but we have stayed strong for five years and are only growing stronger. I celebrated my sisters birthday, stood up to my parents and made several bold decisions for my future and lulling through a massive emotional depression that has been consuming my very being since last year.(That was dramatic. Sorry.)It has been a very trying year but my will is made out of material denser than concrete and I have pushed myself through so much this year that it's time to rest and prepare for another year of emotional joy and trauma. Of pain and happiness. Smiles and frowns. To all my friends, whether you read this or not, to all known friends and friends yet to be made, y'all are the best friends a guy like me can ask for. To my amazing girlfriend, thank you for putting up with all my bull and sticking with me for five years. Five years! That's crazy. To my family out there, stay safe and I love y'all to death. To my watchers thank you for everything y'all have done. Simply choosing to watch me means you like what I post and look forward to seeing more and I hope I don't dissappoint.

Ladies and Gentlmen... 2016 is over. Don't spend the last minutes of the year thinking about negative things. This is a time best spent with family or friends or if you are alone, think of something positive to get you going through the next year. 2016 is over. Just get that through your head. You have survived 365 days. 365! I for one am happy to have made it this far because I know there are some who sadly couldn't make it across the finish line with me. But like I said. Do not spend the last minutes of this year with negative thoughts. This year is done. Leave them behind and look to the future. 2017 is so close people. Get your swords and shields, grab some armor and hold your heads high. 2017... Here we come.

deviantID

FacelessBuster
Lance Sterling III
United States
I am a simple writer. I write what I love and love what I write. More often than not you will see me post Fantasy stories but I also try my best t branch out and do other things. Feel free to say hi! I don't bite.
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SigmaVita Featured By Owner 2 days ago  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
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Thank you so much for supporting my work! I really appreciate it!:) (Smile)
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FacelessBuster Featured By Owner 1 hour ago
No problem! It is simply stunning how beautiful this piece of work is.
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caisamargta Featured By Owner Oct 31, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you for the favorite! Wink/Razz 
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No problem!
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Heluteg Featured By Owner Oct 31, 2018
Thank you so much for all the faves! :squee: 
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FacelessBuster Featured By Owner Oct 31, 2018
No problem! All of your work is amazing!
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Hug Heart 
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TinyNerdGirl Featured By Owner Oct 28, 2018  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
thx for the fave!
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No problem! Thank you for the favs on my stories
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TinyNerdGirl Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2018  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
np ^^
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