View Full Version : Chains of Dragons

Mew Master
1st June 2003, 02:07 PM
Chapter 2: Ambushed! Part I of II: Mystical Pendants and Powerful Weapons

One week ago….

In a room with brick walls, a man stood before a small army of men. “My Lord, we are ready to move at your command.” This man was tall and covered with armor. Awards and metals decorated his left breastplate as he stood at attention. A thick sword hung at his left hip as his blue hair stopped at his shoulders. His armor was black and golden and only left his hands and head exposed. The name of this individual was Karsh, and currently he is the leader of a specialized division of warriors. Karsh already had the title of winning over 300 consecutive battles and was the most impressive one there. Five others stood behind him, each giving the impression that they were better than the other soldiers standing there.

At the front of the room a man sat. He had rings on his fingers and sharpened fingernails. Clad in black he was unarguably the Lord of this army. When he spoke, it sounded evil and foreboding.

“General Karsh,” he said. “This mission is very important to us. I doubt that I may have been premature in my interpretations and think you and your comrades are overqualified for this particular mission.”

“My Lord,” Karsh dropped on one knee and bowed his head. “Any mission for you is a mission of honor for us.”

“Yes!” the five standing behind Karsh sounded.

“Excellent. Ha ha, most excellent.” the “Lord” replied, but with some slight slurring on the “xc.” “In the vicinity of Direwood Forest, there are 11 pendants in all that I wish to posses. You can tell the current owners anything in order to obtain them. You may even use force if you wish, but,” Grey eyes glared at the men present in the room, burning into their souls. “I must have those amulets at any cost. Is that understood?”

Everyone replied as one. “Yes sir!”

“Very well. Be off! I expect those items within the next few weeks.”

Karsh rose and pounded his right fist to the left side of his chest as a salute to the Lord. Turning on a heel, Karsh walked along an empty row between the men and left through the main door, closely followed by the others and then soldiers.

* * *


Leon Wamiyazen sat in his study, going over some important matters that had just come up concerning the shrine. He had a dirty white shirt and black pants held together with a red sash. His brown hair was ruffled and his brown eyes looked over the papers before him. Leon scratched his chin, the small threads of facial stubs from not shaving in two days.

It was not easy being the priest, many came to him for guidance in different matters, but Leon needed some guidance of his own. The shrine was being pressured to stop teaching some of the magic abilities that had been around for thousands of generations and be replaced with scientific knowledge, such a thing Leon and many others were against.

Oriental ornaments decorated his study. Swords, drawings, plants, and even small sculptures. There were two items separated from the rest. Inside a glass container, sitting on a tripod holder, was a small pendant. Made from many white crystals, there was a golden image of a dragon curled around the top of the crystals, its wings folded. Every few minutes it would pulsate a small amount of light. There was also a tall, thin, rectangular cabinet with markings up and down it’s smooth surface. These two things stuck out from Leon’s collection.

There was a scuffle of feet outside his door and he recognized the tread of Saké’s dragging feet, and Pokira’s up and careful step. Saké was Leon’s son and had bugged for the chance to spar with Pokira until he finally gave in. Leon had to admit that Saké’s earnest and eagerness reminded him a lot of Alicia, his own wife.

“Saké!” he shouted through the closed door.

“Yeah father?!” Saké’s voice replied, close to the door.

“I want you to take a shower before you continue training today.” Leon stated.

“Okay.” Leon could hear Saké run towards the showers, and he smiled.

He started to return to the matter at hand when there was a knock at the door. “Yes?”

“Lord Leon, may I enter?” Leon recognized the voice as Pokira’s.

“Pokira, you know better than to be formal with me. Of course, come in. Come in.” Leon stood as the door opened and greeted Pokira like a warm friend.

Pokira entered, but not before bowing before the Priest of the Keikami shrine. Leon just grabbed his friend’s hand and pulled him in before closing the sliding door. Pokira took a seat on the floor as Leon started a pot of tea to brew.

“You didn’t have to bow my friend.” Leon commented as he made sure the tea was brewing.

“I am a man of tradition, you know that Leon.” Pokira stated. “That is why I refuse to refer to Denisu by that nickname he has acquired.”

Leon chuckled. “Yes he has gained a reputation among Hano hasn’t he?” He got some small crackers from a cabinet inside his study, a little kitchenette inside the study itself. “In fact I think that the name Saké is appropriate. For what is more important, a God of Wine, or a drink for the God of Wine?”

“I think that Denisu is fine enough without a name to degrade it to an alcoholic drink.” Pokira replied. The two usually gave subtle jokes towards each other because the two had been friends for most of their lives. They grew up together and both had been admitted to the Keikami shrine for teaching and eventually gained important positions there. Leon was the head Priest and Pokira was the Master Swordsman, both highly dignified places.

“Now, now Pokira, you do realize that he will choose which name he likes more. In fact I believe the main reason he enjoys Saké so much is because of his energy and free spirit.” Leon replied, taking a seat across from Pokira.

Pokira chuckled. “Whichever name he enjoys more, when he becomes priest we will have to refer to him as Lord Wamiyazen if he does not pick one or the other.”

“Ha ha!” Leon laughed. “That we will. Oh Pokira, it has been too long since I have had time to share with Denisu. Just listening to him speak and train, reminds me of Alicia and her free spirit.” Leon’s head turned and looked towards a picture sitting on his desk. There was Saké, around three-years-old, being held by a woman with striking red hair and brilliant green eyes. The woman was holding Saké in her arms, standing by a younger looking version of Leon, clean shaven and tidy hair.

“I remember.” Pokira replied, looking back at the photo on the desk. “I was present at your wedding, don’t forget.”

“And I won’t, I assure you. *sigh* After Alicia's death, the only thing that had kept me going was Saké’s free-spirit and determination. If I lost him, I don't know what I would do…"

The rest of his statement was cut-off by the sound of the tea kettle boiling. Leon stood up and retrieved it as well as two cups and brought them with the crackers over to where he and Pokira were sitting. He sat down and poured himself and Pokira some tea.

As they started to settle down for some tea the main gong‘s ringing echoed through the building. It was a sign that there was a visitor to the shrine.

“Who could be visiting?” Leon asked.

“I shall see.” Pokira rose and started out. He turned and bowed to Leon. “I’ll be quick.”

* * *

At the main doors of the Keikami shrine, it wasn’t Pokira, but one of the sentries that opened the doors and looked out to see what it was the visitor’s wanted. The sentry almost stepped back in disgust. There on the steps, three feline Demi-Humans from The Pack stood, their cat eyes freaking the guard out.

“Uhg,” he said. “What do you thieves want?” He didn’t want to look at them.

The taller one, who must have been a male, spoke first. “Can Saké come out and play?”

“Young Wamiyazen? What business would he have with Demi-Humans like you?”

“Saké please play?” said a younger female.

“Play!” echoed an even younger one.

“He doesn’t have business with the likes of you. Now scat!” the sentry shouted to make them leave.

“Hey don’t be so harsh dude!” the male replied again, shouting as well. “We know Saké and he’s always had time to play with us.”

“I said leave!” The sentry wasn’t playing games with them. “Go now before I ask our Master Swordsman to get rid of you.”

The male was looking down the hall, and who should turn into the hallway but Pokira himself.

“Hey Pokira!” he shouted. “Can you let us in?!”

Pokira noticed and recognized the feline Demi-Humans.

“Pokira! Yay!” shouted the second youngest.

“Pokira!” the younger one said, mispronouncing his name.

“Lynx, well this is a nice surprise.” Pokira walked up right behind the sentry. “And Katie and Jan, you two have grown since the last time I‘ve seen you.”

“Yay!” the younglings replied, running up to Pokira, and he grabbed the two in his arms.

“We were looking for Saké.” Lynx said as he walked in and stood in front of Pokira.

“Denisu is busy washing up, but I’m sure he’ll have time to see you. Let‘s go see the Priest while we wait.” he carried Katie and Jan down the hall and turned a corner. Lynx was trailing behind and turned around to the sentry. He pulled down his eyelid and stuck out his tongue at the man before disappearing down after Pokira. The sentry was speechless.

* * *

The door to Leon’s study opened and the Priest smiled at the sight of Pokira with Katie and Jan in his arms and Lynx following him. “Well Pokira, looks like you adopted a family.”

“I don’t think so Leon,” Pokira smiled back as he put Katie and Jan on their feet. The three visitors bowed their heads to Leon, and knew him pretty well. Their father had visited the Keikami shrine several times and got to know Leon over the course of the past 15 years the Pride had resided in Direwood Forest.

They entered and Lynx grabbed a few extra pillows for him and his sisters.

“So Lynx, what brings you three here today? Your father need something?” Leon asked.

“No sir. I was just hoping to see if Saké would be able to play with us today.” Lynx replied, his head bobbing up and down.

Leon smiled. “Well, I’ve always heard that playing with members of the Pride was the best kind of training anyone could ask for. Of course he can.”

“I’ll go tell him you’re here then.” Pokira rose and entered into the hall.

“Some tea Lynx? Jan? Katie?”

“Please.” the three replied, big grins on their faces.

Leon poured them all a cup, and told Jan and Katie to be careful because it was hot. Lynx was the only one who spat the hot tea out, but apologized and started to clean it up.

A knock and there at the door Denisu Wamiyazen hopped on one foot, struggling to get his boot on. He already had his gloves, arm band, shirt, pants, and other boot on, his vest was in between his teeth.

“Phhorry. I phas in pheh phower.” he said with the vest still clamped between his teeth.

“Saké!” Katie and Jan shouted and pounced Denisu.

“Ack!” he exclaimed as the two girls hit him at once and pinned him to the ground. “Hi Katie. Hi Jan.”

“Saké play with us!” they encouraged. “Play with us! Play with us!”

“Okay, okay. I’ll play, but can I breathe first?” he replied and the two girls got off his chest and he managed to take a breath. He looked up and noticed Lynx.

“Hey Lynx. Figured you were here.” he said.

“Yup, pops never lets me leave these two alone.” Lynx replied with a toothy grin.

“Well common! Let’s go!” Saké started off, but ran into Pokira.

“Aren’t you forgetting something Denisu?” he asked.

“Oops!” Saké kneeled before his father. “Dad, may I please skip my training for the rest of the day and play with the Pride members?”

“Go ahead son, I’ve already okayed it.” Leon replied.

“Cool! Let’s go!” Saké ran out of the room and down the hallway, the three Pride members close on his tail.

Pokira watched them run down the hall. “You could have at least made him sweat a bit over it Leon.”

“It’s all right Pokira.” Leon replied. “It is hard to tease him like that.”

There was a loud clang of a bell that announced the next session of classes to begin. “Hmm, looks like my class is starting. I am sorry Lord Wamiyazen, but I must go.”

“You may go Pokira.” Leon replied, and Pokira left, closing the door behind him.

Leon sighed and started putting the crackers and pillows away. He kept the tea and poured himself another cup and sipped it, glad for the distraction to help clear his mind of his latest problem. Leon was standing near the center of the room and noticed something, his shadow was being cast on the door, something that normally never happened. Spinning around, Leon noticed that the crystal in the glass case was emitting more light than usual, brighter and stronger than its usual daily pulse.

“Hmmmm…. I wonder…” he said.

* * *

Denisu Wamiyazen ran with Lynx, Jan, and Katie hot on his heels. They ran through the small town of Hano as they made way for the trees of Direwood Forest. Some merchants waved at him and at the Pride members following him. Others ignored the Demi-Humans and only waved to Saké, and then whispered about the next priest running around with vermin like those Demi-Humans. The four reached the tree-line quickly and stopped in an open spot.

“Okay, what game are we playing today?” Saké asked, catching his breath.

“Prey and Predator!” Katie asked.

“All right! I’ll be the prey!” Saké replied.

“But you’re always the prey.” Lynx acting like he was complaining.

“Because I can’t sniff out my prey like you guys do, so that makes you the best ones to hunt me down, now doesn’t it?” he replied.

“Isn’t that stereotyping?” Lynx retorted.

“Not the least.” Saké said. “Ready?”

Lynx, Katie, and Jan stood facing three different directions, their backs to Saké and their bodies crouched.

“GO!” they shouted and where gone in bursts of speed, leaving Saké standing in the middle of an open space.

“Okay, here we go. Nimble!” A purple aura surrounded his feet and he felt the spell take effect. In a dash he was off, jumping from the trunk of every tree to another. He disappeared into the forest with the Pride members as well. The game was on.

* * *

On a hill, overlooking the Direwood Forest, Karsh stood. His eyes glanced around the trees to find the locations of which his Lord had told him to find the items. Troops were stationed everywhere around the forest, waiting for his signal. He looked, There was Hano to the northeast, and the shrine’s top cut over the trees. Farther south was Zean, and between the two was Kikata, a small in-between place on a road. He also knew there were several houses scattered throughout the forest and fields. Those were his targets. Currently Karsh’s forces were closer to Hano and the shrine there than any other town.

Satisfied with his survey of the forest, Karsh raised his right hand, a signal. Three soldiers from the forces lead by him gathered towards the more front of the hill and concentrated. Blue auras surrounded their bodies as they pointed their palms towards the sky directly above the center of the forest.

Another officer scanned the edge of the forest, looking for signs that the army on the other sides were ready as well. There were seven similar auras at the edge of the forest.

“Sir Karsh!” the officer reported. “The others are ready.”

“Very well. On my mark we begin our decent into the forest. Remember! Our target is the Keikami shrine, the others have their orders.” He looked and even he could see the auras tipping over the edge of the treetops, he pulled out and checked a pocket watch from his armor. It was time. “FIRE!”

The three soldiers released their combined attack. Aero Blaster, an attack that sent shockwaves through the air towards opponents, but this wasn’t aimed at any structures, just into the air. Several more such attacks headed for the same spot above Direwood forest.

* * *

“So pop,” Kage Ikagaide started. “What’s with the sudden royal treatment?”

Kage, and his father Serge, were currently sitting inside one of the best taverns in Zean. The tavern had the best wine, food, and entertainment in the entire Direwood Forest range, but also had the highest expenses. So it was indeed a rarity that Kage had ever been inside.

“Well, I decided this place would be the best place.” Serge replied.

“For what?”

Serge picked up the briefcase that he had brought with him and laid it on the table. Unlocking the front, he spun it so that Kage could see what was inside. Kage sat dumbfounded at what he saw.

In the briefcase, encased within soft velvet lining, sat two objects, both of them very similar. The two similar objects, looked like gauntlets. Gauntlets that could cover all the way up to his elbow, but also had a section for his hand to go through. The gloves for these gauntlets had metal bars that had to cross over one’s palm, and the looked like they were connected to the gauntlets in some fashion. Both of them were black in color, the same color as the Shadow Element, Kage’s very own Innate.

“Go ahead, try them on.” Serge encouraged.

Kage went and grabbed one of the gauntlets and checked to see which arm it was designed to fit on. He found out it was his left arm and slipped in on, then adjusted the straps to they were tight. Then there seemed to be a strange shadow that spread from the gauntlets and vibrated and moved around his arm. After a tense moment the shadow was absorbed into his very arm and Kage could feel the energy inside his body getting stronger.

“Dad, what just happened?”

“Looks like the Claws have accepted you as their new owner.” Serge said with his fatherly smile.


“Clench your fist around the bar, you’ll notice that there’s a switch.”

Kage looked and saw the switch.

“Just don’t point it at me, point your knuckles straight up.”

Kage did that and clenched his fist around the switch. To his surprise a single blade of black metal sprang out and out from the gauntlet. There were two other blades, but these were formed when the main blade broke through the hand section of the gauntlets. The blade had a notch in it that ran down half of the length, and the blade itself was as long as his forearm. Two markings, parallel to the notch and each other ran down the blade as well and then stopped and turned to join a single marking stretching past where the blade was exposed and into the hand parts of the gauntlets.

“Ikagaide!” shouted the female manager of the tavern. “You know the rules, NO WEAPONS!”

“Release the switch son,” Serge said.

Kage did and to his surprise the blade sprung back into the gauntlet and it looked like it wasn’t even there. He gave his father a surprised/curious look.

Serge lowered his voice to a whisper. “These gauntlets are the Black Dragon Claws and have been in our family for over a dozen generations. They will only accept members of this family as the rightful owners and cannot be used by anyone else. The shadow that you saw around your arm? That was the claws searching your heart and seeing if it was true or not, that way they could accept you as their latest owner. They also confirm to the strengths and weaknesses of the one who uses them.” Kage had slipped the other gauntlet on and the same shadow appeared around his arm.

“But why give them to me now?” Kage asked.

“I have discussed it with your mother, and we both agreed it was time you should carry on the family legacy. The Claws are only half of it.” Serge reached inside his shirt and withdrew a fairly large jewelry box. He placed it on the table, halfway between himself and Kage.

Kage reached out and slid the box closer to him and then opened it. He had to force himself from letting out a gasp.

Inside the box, in the same lining that the gauntlets came in, sat a pendant. Oval, it was about three inches across its longest point. There was a dark stone orb in the center, it made up the largest part of it. The outside ring was decorated with lines that started from where the orb was and ended at the edge. This pattern went across the outside ring forming over a dozen triangles. The ones with their bases at the edge of the pendant were black, and the others white. Inside the black orb, which seemed to flow with dark clouds, a metal dragon was perched inside the very center. It was white and stuck out form the rest of the amulet for some reason. The dragon had a long neck that curled so the top of the head was facing the front. It had no arms or legs, from what could be seen, and stretched into a long and serpentine body. A pair of wings was up and were slightly folded around the body, so only the head could be seen. The head had one Ruby eye. A dark red that gave a slight glow through the darkness of the pendant itself.

“What…” Kage stammered, looking for words. “What is this?”

“The pendant in your hands has been in the family for many generations, too many, my father used to say.” Serge started. “It has incredible power. I haven’t seen this power myself but I’m sure you can feel it.”

Kage reached out and took the pendant in his hand, and felt it’s surface.

“Kage what I say now, is very important.” Kage looked at his father. “That pendant must be protected at all costs, because there are some out there who…” Serge never got to finish his statement because a large explosion blasted over Direwood forest. So loud that it caught everyone’s attention.

* * *

At Vared’s home, the sound wave rocked the entire house. Vared jumped to her feet as did the rest of her family.

“What the hell?” her father exclaimed. There came a loud knock at the door.

Rache, a friend of the family had run inside the home. “Is everyone all right in here?”

“Yes we’re fine Rache, but what’s going on?” Maria replied, getting her footing back.

“There was a large explosion above the forest, and now dozens of soldiers are entering town.” he replied.

“What?!” Abram exclaimed. “It can’t be this soon. Vared come with me.”

Vared followed her grandfather into the living room, he almost leapt the entire distance. He rummaged through the gifts he had brought for his family and finally came across the one he was looking for. Abram brought it to Vared and opened it.

Inside a bright orange lining, sat a red crystal. On the very top of the crystal, sat the head of a golden dragon, small tuffs of metal giving it a feline approach and horns on the top of the head. The head itself was elongated and the snout was blunt. Two claws were on the sides, clutching the crystal. A pair of wings wrapped even more around the crystal, just under the hands. Finally a long tail wrapped around the tip of the crystal. A single Garnet eye glowed with the same brightness of the crystal.

“Vared, now listen to me.” Abram said holding his granddaughter’s shoulders. It is very important that you protect that amulet with your life. There are evil forces out there, very evil ones who want the power for themselves, and they will do anything to achieve them. Promise me you will protect it. Promise me!”

“I do. I will protect it with my life.” Vared clutched the pendant close to her heart, and could feel a warm surge of energy flow to her body from the amulet itself. She meant every word about protecting it.

Her mother and father looked at Vared and then at each other. They nodded and her father went downstairs as her mother turned Vared to face her. “Vared,” she stared. “We love you very much, and with you receiving the pendant, we also believe that you must have a weapon, strong enough to protect it.”

Her father came up the stairs from the basement, holding a familiar looking box. Vared recognized it as the one that held her family’s spear.

“Vared, you are now the bearer of the pendant, now you are also the owner of our family’s heirloom, the Dragon Spear.” Her father opened the box and Vared saw the spear in all it’s beauty. “Now we only have to see if the spear will accept you as its owner.”

Vared reached out with her hand and could feel a burning heat coming from the spear. Then her eyes started playing tricks on her, she saw flames engulfing the spear and the flames turned into biting monsters, waiting to engulf her hand in one bite. She hesitated, staring at the monstrous flames before her. Vared bit her lip, expecting to be bitten, she reached for the spear, determined to prove her worth as its owner. Her hand gripped onto the handle and held it tight. To her surprise the flames were blasted apart as she gripped the Dragon Spear and could feel warm energy flowing through her body. It felt warm, like fire, her very Innate.

She picked the spear from the box and saw that it had more beauty than she remembered. It was light, not at all heavy, and there was also a fiery aura that surrounded it and moved up her arm. The aura surrounded her and then she watched it as it was absorbed into her body.

“Good,” Abram stated. “The Spear has accepted your courage as a quality for being its owner.”

There came shouts from outside, getting closer to the house.

“Now Vared, hide the pendant. They shouldn’t bother you, most likely it is me they are searching for, if anything should happen, run. Run and don’t stop.” her grandfather told her.

Vared zipped up her vest and tucked the pendant underneath it, just as soldiers bashed in the door.

“We are looking for a man named Abram.” one ordered. “We have been told that he resides here currently.”

Abram stared at the soldiers. “I am Abram, now what is it you want?”

“You are Abram?” the soldier looked confused.

“Yes, I am Abram. The Seventh Warrior of the Draconian Warriors.” Vared’s grandfather replied.

“Abram, you are believed to have stolen an artifact from the possession of our Lord, Garm. You are to come with us if you cannot or will not return it.”

Abram eyes filled with anger, something no one has ever seen and lived to tell. “That artifact you speak of has been in the possession of my family for countless years. This person Garm has no bearing on it, for it was never his to begin with.”

The soldiers drew their swords. “If you do not comply with our orders, then we shall be forced to kill you.”

Abram glared at them. “Take me on if you wish, but if you value your lives I would suggest against it.” Faster than anyone could have imagined, Abram slid forward, his fist connecting with the lower jaw of the leader of the three men. The man buckled back, all thoughts of consciousness gone. “Vared, GO!”

Vared didn’t hesitate, all of her training had told her when grandpa says something, do it. She dashed out the backdoor as her parents and grandfather fought with the soldiers who had invaded their home. Running out into the street, she saw soldiers swarming over the place like an infestation. Fires burned as they attacked everything and everyone that stood in their way.

“The girl! Stop that girl with the spear!” one of the soldiers from inside shouted.

Vared spun around and saw soldiers surrounding her. I’m in trouble..

* * *

Seylin Hatsuki was laying on his stomach, hiding his face with his arms. This was how he acted whenever his father had boarders over. He tilted his head a bit to see the picture on his dresser.

Staring at the picture, he couldn’t help but look at the woman. Oh, mom….

But his thoughts were interrupted.

An explosion, which may have been right on top of Kikata, rocked the entire house. Disoriented and off balance, Seylin flailed his arms around trying to grasp something to hang onto. Unfortunately, the shaking of the house and his sudden panic only ended in him falling off the bed and slamming his chin onto the floor of his room. The picture on his dresser vibrated and was moved off and slammed down, the glass shattering. Then, the shocks stopped as soon as they came.

“What the hell….” he said, rubbing his lower jaw. “Ow, just happened?”

“Seylin! Seylin you okay?!” he heard his father say as he ran up the stairs. He threw the door to his son’s room open.

“Yes, I’m fine father,” Seylin replied. “But what was that?”

“I don’t know, but it was almost on top of Kikata.” They both looked at the ceiling, expecting another barrage. Nothing came.

Finally his father broke the tense waiting. “Downstairs.” he said and Seylin got up and they both headed down the stairs to their shelter. The basement was a place where even Seylin wasn’t supposed to visit, not without his father’s expressed permission. There was something down there that his father didn’t want him to know about, so Seylin started wondering why downstairs of all places?

They reached the basement floor, and Seylin stared at what he saw.

An alter, a strange alter where a mean looking dragon-like statue had a small box in it’s hands and something in it’s mouth. His father went forward and bowed to the statue before gently lifting the box from the dragon’s clawed hands. Seylin watched as his father opened the box and showed Seylin a magnificent item.

A deep blue stone was connected to a long silver chain. Inside the stone there was a dragon, caught forever with its wings spread and free. The stone was almost shunned down because of the magnificence of the dragon, as if it were unworthy to hold it. The entire chain was pure silver and showed not a single sign of rust or age on it. A single Chalcedony stone set as the eyes stood out from the body. Seylin stared at it for several minutes before he caught himself and looked at his father, astonishment and confusion on his face.

“Seylin,” his father held the chain as if he was going to place it over Seylin’s neck. “This amulet has been in the family for countless generations, and is our greatest treasure. I had hoped that there would be a day when you did not need to inherit this, but from the sounds of earlier, that might not happen. Protect it Seylin. For me, for you, and for your mother’s spirit.”

Seylin almost stepped back. It was rare when anyone spoke of his mother, especially his own father!

“Oh, I almost forgot.” His father turned back and reached for the object in the dragon’s mouth. It was long, almost two meters, and wrapped in cloth. Carefully Seylin’s dad took the object out and then, just as carefully, unwrapped it. “This is to be yours as well.”

Seylin was speechless for a second time. The object wasn’t ordinary, instead it was a 6 foot long naginata with a one foot blade. Two feathers stuck out from under the hilt, they were an icy blue and moved with every slight vibration in the air. The blade was crisp and clean, and very sharp as well. The six-foot handle was sturdy and looked as if it had never been used once.

Almost on instinct, Seylin reached for the handle, and then came the chill. An icy wind from nowhere seemed to blast every part of his skin, causing his fingers to even burn under the extreme cold. His hand got closer, he couldn’t stop now, he had to grasp it. Through the burning chill Seylin grabbed the handle and the freezing winds ceased. He could feel his body be warmed as an icy blue aura poured from the naginata and into his own body.

“Good, the Dragon Naginata has accepted you as its new owner. And it appears that the amulet has too.” he father commented. It was true, in the darkened room Seylin could see both the weapon and pendant glow with the same aura. “That Naginata has never rusted or dulled. Now this should save me time in sharpening yours…What?”

There a crash and the sound of the explosion of earlier. Seylin and his father bolted upstairs as fast as their legs could carry them. Opening the front door they saw one of their neighbor’s homes reduced to nothing but rubble. Seylin gripped the amulet close to his chest as he saw men clad in black and gold armor approach their house next.

* * *

Horus sat with his legs crossed, determined to find the truth hidden by his vision. Even the most experienced Psychics had difficulty in deciphering visions and warnings, and he had an unyielding will. He sat and thought, thought and sat, and even hours after dinner had been finished Horus was still stumped.

His parents must have felt his frustration, for his mother called him downstairs. Finally glad to have some distraction to leave his mind clear, Horus made his way downstairs. He found both of his parents sitting at the dinner table, unusual serious looks on their faces.

“What is wrong? I’m fine, I’m okay. Sometimes when I strain too hard and things strike me like a wall, and I pass out. It’s happened before, you know it.”

“We know son,” his mother commented, squeezing the hand of her husband. “That is why you must listen to us.”

“Horus,” his father started. “What did you see in your vision that causes you to wish us not to help you?”

Horus stepped back. His father had a point, but he had to argue. “It was just like all the others I’ve had when I strained myself. Larger and bigger versions of the Lesser Dragons as well as the laughter. It’s all happened before, but..”

“But not as strong as this one.” his father finished. “Horus, we believe it is time for you to take on the burden that our family has carried on for countless generations.” His mother and father stood up, hand in hand, and lead Horus down into the recesses of their home.

His father pressed an idol and a wall pivoted open, revealing a hallway. Big enough for anyone to enter. They started down a corridor, and down several flights of stairs. Horus looked at the walls. Ancient inscriptions covered each side of the wall like graffiti. It was too dark for him to accurately tell what the hieroglyphs depicted as he kept pace with his parents. Finally the flights of stairs had stopped and Horus whacked his head against a banner across the hall. Rubbing his head, Horus looked at the sight before him.

A room, only lit by four purple candles, not very big, but held on the other side of the wall a class case that held a double bladed sword. By the case stood a marble pillar, and inside the pillar was a wooden box. The flames on each candles burned with black flames. The walls were granite stone blocks, wooden beams holding up a dirt ceiling, the whole place smelt of mildew and dampness.

“Horus,” his mother finally stated after a long silence. “Take hold of this sword, the Twin Dragon Blade. If it causes you to go insane, then you are unworthy of being its owner and your mind will be reduced to ashes. If you are unaffected, then it has accepted you.”

Horus cautiously stepped forward. As he neared the case, the glass door swung open and almost invited him to take the sword. He stared at it in more detail. There were two blades that sprouted from the hilt, each branching off before stopping and becoming parallel. In the middle of the hilt was a single eye, the Elemental Sign for all Psychic Innates, representing the third eye that all creatures posses. The source for most true psychic powers, Horus had his symbol on his upper left arm. The handle was golden colored and the entire weapon seemed to irradiate a purple aura.

Slowly and carefully, Horus reached for the handle and gripped it. Instantly his mind was rushed with feelings, emotions, thoughts, images. They swirled around him, causing an intense wind that threatened to knock him over. He leaned against it, always keeping his hand around the handle, never letting go. Finally the images blasted away, away from his mind and sight, and the wind died as well. Horus dropped to his knees, mentally exhausted and breathing hard.

“Your mind has not been plunged into chaos,” his father stated. “This means the Twin Blade has accepted you. Now you must also be able to accept another part of our burden.”

His father went to the pillar and brought out the box from within it. Carefully he presented it to Horus and opened it. Horus was shocked.

Inside a medallion, there was an amethyst stone inside of it. Inside of the stone itself was a dragon. Not flying or with its neck craned, the dragon was sitting, two Amethyst stones set for eyes and they gave off the same type of glow as the flames for the candles. A silver chain was connected so that the entire thing could be worn around the neck. He wrapped his fingers around the chain and lifted it so he could see it in more detail. It was beautiful in his estimation, the true image of Psychics.

“This pendant is now yours.” his mother said. “We have guarded it for many years, and now it is yours to protect.”

“Horus, you must protect this with your life. It must not fall into evil hands.”

Horus slipped the chain around his neck and let the pendant rest on his chest. “I will, or else I’ll be a discredit to Psychics everywhere.” he threw both of his parents a smile.

Mew Master
8th June 2003, 01:22 PM
Chapter 3: Ambushed!: Part II of II: Spirits of the Pendants

“We wish to see the High Priest at once!” Karsh shouted at the top of his voice.

Karsh stood in front of his soldiers on the steps of the Keikami Shrine, a place where his Lord had told him an artifact resided that he wanted. He promised his Lord to capture the prize himself, and hand it to him personally. Karsh had come here and had ordered to see the High Priest of the Shrine several times. There was some moderate resistance.

Many of the students learning at this shrine had come forward, some holding wooden swords, others metal. There was one, a man with an impressive presence and white hair, who refused to let them take another step onto their sacred shrine, he held a tachi sword. Very curved and very deadly if used correctly.

“If you do not comply, we will be forced to attack the shrine and reduce it to rubble. Any effort to resist will be seen as an attack on our Lord himself!” Karsh roared, losing his patience.

“There will be no such thing on these sacred lands.” someone shouted as they walked out of the shrine’s main doors. Leon Wamiyazen stepped out into the light, a sheathed sword was in his left hand, and a glare in his eye. “I am Wamiyazen Leon, the High Priest of the Keikami Shrine. State your business.”

Karsh smiled and then bowed to Leon, trying to look sincere. “I am sorry for this intrusion on your Shrine, Priest, but we have come here under orders from our Lord.” He rose and looked at Leon in the eyes. “He says that you possess an artifact that rightfully belongs to him, and he only wishes its safe return.”

“I am sorry, but every artifact in this building is sole property of the shrine and has remained here for thousands of years. Now, if you will be so kind as to leave, we have classes we must attend to.” Leon retorted and glared at the soldiers.

“But, we must return the item to Lord Garm at any cost. It was stolen from his family and he will even be willing to pay you full compensation for the item’s worth.” Karsh pleaded.

“I am sorry, but I have never heard of your Lord Garm before. Now leave.” Leon warned. “I do not wish any bloodshed on these holy grounds.”

“I see,” Karsh replied, closing his eyes. “But we cannot accept no for an answer.” Karsh drew his sword and the first line of men behind him did the same thing. “If you will not give us what we want, then we will have to take it from you.”

Leon, Pokira, and as well as every other Shrine student there, reached for the handles of their swords. They were willing to die for their shrine.

“Dad!” came a shout. Leon looked into the crowd of soldiers and saw his son, Denisu “Saké” Wamiyazen, wading his way through the mob. “Dad! What’s going on?!” he shouted again as he broke through the final row of soldiers.

“Grab him!” Karsh shouted.

“Denisu!” Pokira shouted.

“Saké!” Leon added.

Saké was surprised as two burly men grabbed his arms and pulled them behind his back. He tried to pull away, but it was no use, the soldier’s grip was too strong.

“Release him!” Leon demanded, rage in his eyes.

“Now, maybe we can resume our compromise.” Karsh replied, pointing at Saké’s head with his sword. “Give us the Pendant and your son will go free, you have my word as a knight.”

Leon glared at Karsh.

* * *

Kage and Serge Ikagaide stood up after the sound of the sonic blast subsided. There was slight panic and confusion in the tavern, but the manager, Helen, managed to restore order. Not even a minute after she had restored order, soldiers clad in black and gold armor stormed into the tavern. Some petty thieves hid as the men entered. They stopped before Kage and Serge, and the two Ikagaides stared at the men.

“You Serge Ikagaide?” asked one.

“Yeah?” Serge replied.

“You have something that we want, and you better give it to us, or else,”

“Or else?”

The soldier motioned to the sword on his belt.

“HEY! NO WEAPONS!” Helen, shouted, not afraid of anything on Jakarta.

The soldier turned to shout back, taking his eyes off of the Ikagaides. “Shut up woman! This has nothing to do with you!”

Kage and Serge moved as one. Flipping the table onto the soldiers they split up and the tavern erupted into a regular bar-room-brawl. The table was slashed into two pieces and the soldiers went after the fleeing men.

Kage spun around as two men neared him, starting to pull out their swords. He went for the closest one and landed a punch to his stomach, forcing the soldier to cough up blood, then a sweeping kick brought him down. The other one had his sword out and slashed for Kage. He back-rolled on a table, missing being cut to shreds by a hair, and then stood on the other side. The soldier sliced down, splitting the table, and Kage jumped up, flipped, grabbed the man’s shoulders, and then used his momentum to toss the man in a backwards round-house throw. Kage watched as the soldier went crashing on a table as more soldiers swarmed into the tavern.

The elder Ikagaide was having the time of his life. He had grabbed a metal tray and was using that to block attacks from the four men around him. Dropping to his stomach, he avoided three slash attacks and then one upward kick forced a soldier to double-over. Serge dodged a thrust and then grabbed the arm behind the sword, twisted it and forced the man to drop the sword. He whacked the soldier with the back of his hand, knocking him out cold. Now he had two on his back.

Stepping from side to side, he dodged their thrusts and slashes, but then went for an open-spot after each attack. He nailed the two in the stomach, the force of the blow going through even the thick armor they had on. Looking around the tavern, he was surprised it had erupted into this much chaos this quickly. Men were bashing bottles over the soldier’s exposed heads, as the soldiers punched out others.

Kage jumped in, his back to Serge’s. “So what now?”

“You get on home, Ha!” Serge punched out a soldier who had gotten too close.

“What will I tell mom?” Kage high-kicked a soldier right under the collar-bone, knocking him back.

“Tell her I’ll be a while, but I should be home before dinner!” Serge grabbed a soldier and threw the man above the chaos. He hit and slid across the counter, smashing into bottles and eventually sliding off the edge.

Helen appeared on the other side of the counter, wine bottle in hand, and looking for her next target. “Ikagaide! You’re going to have to pay for this!” as she smashed the bottle over a soldier’s head.

“Oh, common Helen,” Serge replied as he punched out two more men. “This ain’t my fault! Kage go!”

Kage jumped onto a table and then jumped again for the chandelier. He grabbed onto the ornament and then swung for the door to the tavern. As he fell, Kage planted a foot straight onto the face of one soldier who had just entered, and used him as a spring board to roll out of the tavern. The sounds of the fighting were still coming from the once very nice tavern.

“Where are you going?”

Kage looked and saw that there was a small group of remaining soldiers standing outside.

“Would you believe I’m doing some exercising?” Kage replied.

“Surrender, in the name of our Lord Garm!” they shouted as one.

Garm? Kage thought. Who’s he?

“Will you stand down?” the man asked again.

“No,” Kage clenched his fists and his new toys sprang out from his gauntlets. “But you’ll be laying down. I just can’t say in how many pieces.”

“Why you impudent! Attack and kill him!” They rushed forward and Kage raised his blades.

Kage dashed under the attacks and slashed up and down repeatedly. He ran past and didn’t stop to see the men drop over, long slashes opening their bodies and their swords sliced in two.

* * *

Vared turned and raised her spear to block an attack from a soldier that had followed her outside of her home. The strength of the attack pushed her back and away from the man she was fighting.

“Give it up girl!” he warned as he readied his sword again.

“Forget it, I won’t give you a thing!” Vared shouted back.

The man charged forward, and a thought came into Vared’s mind. Quickly she ducked, slid over a bit and stuck her spear out. To her amazement and amusement, the soldier tripped over it and lost his balance. Quickly she slashed his hand and forced him to drop is sword, on instinct she thrust the butt of her spear back, and jabbed someone in the stomach, then brought it up to block a thrust from someone else.

Vared continued to hold her own against the men, blocking, attacking, blocking, and attacking again. She blocked an attack that was nothing but brute strength and she was knocked back. Skidding on her butt, she stopped when her back slammed into a barrel. The force of the stopping caused her to black-out, spear resting gently in her hand.

The soldiers started to close in on Vared’s body, ready to take her prisoner. As the reached for her, the pendant resting under her jacket started glowing intensely.

They stepped back as they could feel the raw heat coming from the glowing spot that seemed to burn through the clothing.

“What? What the hell is going on?!” one soldier shouted.

Vared could feel the heat, but it wasn’t painful, it was soothing, energizing. She opened her eyes and saw the soldiers standing back, swords still raised. Looking down at the glowing spot in her clothes she could feel the heat get stronger, giving her energy.

“Grrr, this is your last chance girl! Surrender to us and maybe Lord Garm will shows you some mercy.”

“Not a chance!” she shouted, leaping to her feet and attacking with more energy than she had earlier. The fight raged on, the intensity of the clash and the heat of the pendant under Vared’s jacket escalating until it was at a fevered pitch. It felt like a mini-bonfire was resting on Vared’s chest as she slashed down, blocking an attack.

Then a soldier knocked her off balance and she twisted on one foot, avoiding a couple slashes until she got her balance back. But it was too late, Vared had been distracted long enough to be surrounded. She clutched the spear tight, thinking of a way out of this and also how the heat inside the pendant seemed to be unbearably hot.

Just then, the energy jumped from the pendant and into her own body, traveling along a path down her right arm and then zapping along the handle of her spear. When the energy reached the blade, the entire leaf-shaped blade burst into flames. The sight stopped some other soldiers from fighting to see what it was. Vared never wasted an opportunity.

Quickly she lashed out with the spear, a strange urge coming over her to shout out, “Scorch Blade!”

A single slash sliced right through one man’s arm, causing him to scream out in pain. When Vared looked, she could see pale bone and the edges of the man’s armor and flesh were sizzling from heat, the smell of cooking meat met her nose, as the part she cut off fell to the ground.

She slashed more and more, her attacks made maddeningly painful by the flames. Before she knew it, the soldiers were running away, not bothering to stay and fight. They ran, they limped, they stumbled, anything to get away from her and her deadly Scorch Blade attack.

Vared’s breathing slowed down until she was inhaling normally, no need for any extra oxygen. The heat from the pendant under her jacket and the spear dispersed, so she couldn’t’ feel them anymore. Then it occurred to her that she had held her own against a dozen men that were soldiers none the less.

She stood dumbfounded for a minute, before the sounds of other battles raging by her home met her ears. After a quick glance around to make sure no soldiers would follow her, she made a dash for the forest.

* * *

Horus stood and faced his parents, still in the underground shrine in their home.

“Horus,” his father stated. “There are others who will need your help, and your skills. Their homes are currently under attack from the one searching for your pendant as well.

“Where are they?” he asked. Human or Demi-Human, he didn’t care. If he could help it was the least he could do.

“Direwood Forest, far too far for you to teleport on your own.” his father replied. “Therefore we shall help you Teleport the distance.”

Horus watched as his parents held hands. Purple auras surrounded their bodies and they closed their eyes. Teleporting was difficult enough, the person had to have a clear vision of where they were going or else they could end up in the air, stuck in the ground, or in the middle of a mountain. This was the main reason not many psychics used the common Telebort ability, that and the fact that it used so much energy depending on the distance.

He closed his eyes and he saw an image on the back of his eye-lids. The image of a peaceful forest, with sun beams breaking through the branches, and green in every direction. Horus concentrated on this image and he could feel the transition as his body was transformed into energy. He grasped his hand around the Twin Blade.

Horus disappeared from the underground shrine in a flash of light, illuminating the small room in bright light. When the light subsided, and dispersed, Horus was gone.

His mother and father fell to their knees, much of their energy had gone into sending Horus half-way around Jakarta for him to lend his aid to others in similar situations such as him.

“Good luck, my son.” her mother muttered as she continued to catch her breath.

* * *

In the air above Direwood Forest, a large flash illuminated the sky, followed by a loud blast. Horus materialized from the light and opened his eyes, surprised to find himself in a free-fall.

DAMN! Mother must have screwed up her coordinates again! his mind shouted.

His hands wrapped around the handle of his sword and the pendant he wore around his neck. Wind bit his skin as he fell, the trees getting larger with every second. Smoke was starting to pillow into the sky. Spotting a small stream, Horus concentrated, trying to focus his thoughts and Teleport again. He was surprised to find out his energy was almost gone.

“I knew I had used a lot of energy in the Teleport, but I thought I would have a little left over. Have … to … concentrate…” he muttered as he closed his eyes and concentrated again.

If his eyes had remained opened Horus would have seen the pendant around his neck begin to glow brightly. An aura of purple energy surrounded the amulet and then began to surround Horus, concentrating more around his head. All Horus felt was a last bit of energy come into his body and then he was aware of the Teleport take affect and he disappeared with a flash.

* * *

Amalthea Arran ran through the trees and bushes, not looking back to see if she was being followed or not. Or even to see if her father would follow her after getting away from the soldiers. She ran, ran and never stopped until her legs threatened to give out from under her.

Finally Amal slowed down, breathing heavily and tears still running down her cheeks. She walked for several minutes, over bushes and around trees until she reached a stream.

Amal fell to her knees, Glaive still tight in her hand, and she stared into the water. Confused and slightly shaken by what had just happened, she just stared into the water, thinking, tears continuing to streak down her cheeks.

“Dad,” she muttered. “Dad, what am I supposed to do? You never told me….”

She sat there, on her knees, staring into the slowly flowing water.

Then there was a flash, blinding, but above her. Followed by a small thunderclap. She jumped to her feet, Glaive in her hands, and ready to fight if need be. To her surprise, no attack came, but something did come crashing through the tree branches.

Something dressed in black grunted as it hit small tree branches that slowed its fall. The thing came to a thud on the ground, near the stream and her. Pieces of broken branches fell on top of it.

Amal walked up to the person, she thought it was a person, carefully. The person must have been a Demi-Human, because his skin was a purple color. They also had white hair that still had leaves stuck in it. A twin blade sword was attached to their belt.

Suddenly the person let out a moan and then moved. Amal stepped back, the point of her glaive pointed at their head, in case they reached for the sword around the belt, but something told her, that this person wasn’t going to hurt her.

The person pushed himself up and he sat on his knees. “Blast, that’s the last time I take my mother’s directions when teleporting.”

The voice was male. This person was a male Demi-Human, because his ears were a little elongated as well. He opened his eyes and Amal only saw the outline of his iris, and no pupils or color.

“Hmm?” he looked at her. “Hey,” he gave her a kind smile.

Amal spread her stance out a bit more. “Don’t … don’t try anything funny.”

Horus, who had just fallen through a tree on his second attempt of teleporting within five minutes, looked at the girl who was pointing a double ended glaive at him. The aura around the girl was mixed.

Sadness, confusion, curiosity? She’s unsure of who to trust. the thought.

Standing up he smiled at the girl. “Put your weapon down, I’m not going to hurt you.”

“Why should I?”

Horus thought. Interesting question…. Huh? He noticed the pendant around her neck.

“That … That pendant.”

She clutched a hand around it. “If you want it, you can’t have it.”

Horus shook his head. “I don’t want your pendant, because I have one of my own.” He pulled the pendant out so she could see it. That may have proved to her that he wouldn’t try and take hers and she lowered her Glaive down.

“Who are you?”

“My name is Horus, I come from a long line of Psychic Innates. You can put your Glaive away, it’s not hospitable to point weapons at your allies, is it?” The girl planted the butt of her glaive on the ground. “Now, who are you?”

“I’m Amalthea Arran, but just call me Amal. Please.”

“Okay Amal,” Horus looked at her aura. “You’re a Water Innate, aren’t you?”

Amal stepped back. “How did you know?”

“I just said I’m a Psychic Innate, didn’t I. Your Element Innate is prominent among your aura.” Horus replied. “That and I can see the symbol on your arm.”

“Can you read minds?” Amal started to feel more easy around this Demi-Human, Horus. He must have been older than her, because his voice was deep, not higher like some of the boys she knew around her age.

“No, I can’t read minds. Just the auras of most Innates.” Horus replied giving a small laugh. “So, why are you so sad?”

“Huh?” Amal was surprised.

“A person’s aura shows what emotion is the strongest among all others. And currently sadness is the largest emotion I’m sensing from you. So, what happened?”

* * *

Carrying his two little sisters, Jan and Katie, Lynx began to make his way back to the Pride’s camp. Saké had ran off minutes ago, heading back to Hano, making sure Lynx would be able to get back to the Pride on his own.

He ran faster than any human, but not as fast as he could move because his sisters were hanging from his arms. Quickly, Lynx was coming up onto a turn where he was sure the camp was only a kilometer away, when the entire trail was blocked off by men dressed in black and gold armor, swords in their arms.

One of the men stepped in front of the group and faced Lynx. “You there! Where is the Demi-Human camp known as the Pack? You must be a member of it.”

Lynx recognized the name given to the Pride by the people in Hano. “Why should I tell you losers?!” he shouted.

“If you don’t it’s your choice. Your life isn’t that much of a concern to us.” He started to advance on Lynx. Lynx could try and run but he was sure that would be a mistake. Where would he go, so he decided to just stand his ground.

“Well?” the soldier asked right in front of Lynx. “What is your choice?”

Lynx gritted his teeth, he wouldn’t answer, but Jan and Katie were more important.

Then there came a roar of a large jungle cat throughout the forest, catching everyone’s attention. The roar echoed through the trees and the air, reverberating off of everything.

“Sis!” Lynx shouted.

“Sister!” Katie echoed.

“Sis-ter!” Jan added.

“Sister?!” the soldier replied, looking along the trees.

“Get away from my FAMILY!”

Elena Kai-Prae pounced down from the tree branches, daggers in hand. With her cat-like speed she slashed several soldiers in her first pass, long gashes on their arms, shoulders, and legs. The men dropped to the ground in pain, the rest in shock.

She skidded on the ground and spun around, daggers poised and her teeth bared. If anyone or anything ever tried to harm her family, she would kill them.

Before she could attack again, the man near Lynx, Jan, and Katie drew his sword and pointed a part of the blade towards them.

“I would think twice before you do anything else, unless you don’t want to see these three again.” he looked at the three hostages and then back at Elena. “Take us to where the Pack is, and we will let these three go free, if you don’t…”

Jan, the youngest, watched as the man’s bared hand continued to hold the sword. This was a bad man, and she realized that fact. Following her heart she jumped free from Lynx and bit.

The soldier shouted out in pain as Jan’s sharp teeth bit into the flesh of his hand. The pain forced him to drop his sword. He went to reach and pull off the young Demi-Human off of his hand, but the other two jumped him, Lynx on his head, scratching, and Katie grabbed on to his other arm with her claws and then bit.

Elena acted quickly and dashed with her speed to slash down the man that her sisters and brother had started to attack. He dropped to the ground, dead, blood pouring from an open wound on his stomach. She was lucky she didn’t hit Jan or Katie with the way he was trying to throw them off.

“Are you okay?” she asked them.

“We’re fine Big Sis.” Lynx replied stepping away from the body. “Nice move.”



The two younglings ran to Elena and grabbed onto her legs.

“Sister, we were so scared! First we were playing with Saké and then this noise, and then these ban humans try to hurt us.” Katie spat out, crying.

“Sister, Saké, then Boom, then bite man.” Jan cried as well.

Elena dropped down and held her sisters close, comforting them the best she could.

“Uh, Sis,” Lynx said. “I think we should get outta here.”

Elena looked and she saw what Lynx was talking about. The other men she had missed in her attack run were starting to draw their swords and headed for them.

“Take Jan,” she said as she held Katie in her arms, and Lynx got Jan.

The two Demi-Humans jumped into the trees as the soldiers got too close. A rustle of leaves in the tree tops and they were gone.

* * *

Clutching his naginata and his pendant as the soldiers neared their home, Seylin Hatsuki stood by his father.

“Go, go now. To the forest.” his father said so that only Seylin could hear him.

Seylin nodded slowly and then bolted down the steps and ran to the forest behind his house. He heard shouts of the soldiers, ordering him to stop, but he ran faster to get away.

The soldiers started to run after Seylin but his father interjected and stalled for him. Jabbing, chopping, and kicking, he bought Seylin enough time to reach the tree line and get away from the soldier’s sight. But, in letting his son get away, he was beaten by the soldiers in response to his interference.

Seylin jumped over a bush and found out at the last minute that there was a steep hill behind it. He went skidding along the edge of the hill and came to a stop at the bottom, covered in dirt. Pushing himself up, he brushed off the dirt and started heading down the trail as fast as his feet could go.

After a few minutes of running Seylin caught something out of the corner of his eye. Moving flames. He stopped and looked more closely, hiding behind a bush.

The flames were coming from the end of a spear. At the other end of the spear was a girl, probably older than him. Seylin sat and watched as the girl slashed three more soldiers before the rest started running off, screaming. Others limped away.

He sat, open mouthed at the sight until he saw the girl running towards him. Quickly he backtracked a distance and ducked behind a tree as he heard the girl jump through the bushes which Seylin had been looking through several seconds ago. Listening, Seylin heard the girl start walking along the trail, in the same direction he was also heading.

Hmm… he thought and decided to follow her, but not before his Naginata got caught in the lower branches of the tree he was hiding behind. With a lot of effort, and noise, he wrenched his weapon free. Certain that the girl had heard him. Seylin hid behind the tree once again.

* * *

Arrows flew and hit the chest area of the soldiers in front of Faile Thundersong’s sight. She had already used a dozen arrows, dispatching the soldiers with every one. Her mother and younger brother were behind her, Marge with a sprained ankle after the house had collapsed on them.

Faile concentrated on the men that started to run away now, not paying attention to anything behind her. Slowly a soldier started to creep up, sword raised.

“Faile! No!”

Faile spun on a heel, surprised and shocked. Instead of slicing her in two, the soldier had thrust his sword through her mother!

Marge Thundersong was frozen in mid-air, the point of the sword through the right side of her chest. Faile stood there, horrified to see the look on her mother’s face, her eyes losing their reflection.

Marge’s body slid off the sword and fell to the ground, blood flowing from the fresh wound.

“F … Fa … Faile…” she muttered.

“Mom … mom … no,” Faile stuttered.

Thaddeus looked at the body of his mother. “Momma? Momma, wake up.”

Then Faile lost it. Losing her temper was the worst thing that could ever happen to anyone. Grabbing her two daggers she rushed the soldier. Lightning Innates were fast, but Faile was even faster then normal when her heart was into it. Dashing so fast as to kick up dust, and too fast for the man to react, she rushed him.

She stabbed him, below the belt, with both daggers and the man threatened to double over. Still in a rage, Faile thrust both daggers straight up, carving the man right down the middle. Blood splashed her body as she slashed up and the body fell backward. She was still pissed off and glared at any remaining soldiers that were there.

The three that still stood started to back up when she cast her glare. They saw death in her eyes, and dropped their weapons to run. No one would be lucky today.

Dashing along, Faile caught up with the soldiers and slashed each one once, cutting out their jugular veins and ending their lives instantly. When all the soldiers were dead, Faile walked back to her brother and the body of their mother, tears running down her cheeks.

Dropping to her knees, she stayed there beside Marge’s body, with her brother. Marge was having trouble breathing now, each breath seemed like it would be her last.

“Fai … Faile. Pro … protect the pen…dant. And your bro…ther. Plea..se, for muh…muh…me.” Marge tried to speak.

“Don’t say that,” Faile said, tears flowing down her cheeks and dropping onto her mothers face. “You’ll be fine. What would we do without you? *SNIFF*” she rubbed her nose.

“Faile…” Marge said. “I love you…. I … always… will….” Marge Thundersong closed her eyes and never opened them again.

Faile stayed there. Tears flowing down her cheeks and sobbing slightly. She had always thought her mother was out against her, but she knew now. Deep inside her heart, that it wasn’t true. Her mother had loved her, truly loved her and her brother.

“Mom?” Thaddeus said, shaking Marge’s body. “Mom, wake up. Please wake up.”

“Thad…” Faile said gently, and scooted over to her brother. Gently she held him in her arms. “Mom isn’t going to be with us anymore…”

Thaddeus and Faile cried with each other.

* * *

With a tuck-and-roll, Zera Leonhart made his way under the taller bushes near the edge of the forest and fields. Landing on his stomach he pushed himself up straight and glanced around, his tail slowly flowing with his movements. He heard shouts, far off in the distance, so that wasn’t a big problem.

Zera walked along the trail until he heard something come crashing through the bushes behind him. From the opposite side of the trail a girl jumped through the bushes and landed on the trail. She was dressed in blue denim from head to toe, short brown hair on her head. On her back was a big scythe-like weapon.

He recognized this girl. Zera had seen her several times on the main road and sometimes in the group of houses that he lived close by.

He walked up behind her. “Hey!”

Quick, almost too quick for anyone to react, she spun around and attacked.

Zera stood there, his weapon raised up to block hers, the tip of her scythe not less than an inch from his face. She seemed to be suspended in mid-air as he held the blunt end of his weapon to steady. With luck, Zera had pulled out his Blade and blocked her Kama from slicing his head clean off.

A look of realization and shock came across the girl’s face and she backed away.

“Sorry! Sorry! I thought you were a soldier.” she said backing down, embarrassed by her rashness.

“It’s okay really.” Zera replied. “Girls usually want to rip my head off anyway.”

“No, It’s mostly my fault. I’m Hibari Sora.” she said, introducing herself.

“I’m Zera Leonhart.” Zera replied. “Soldiers are after you too?”

“Yes.” she replied. “What? Wait!” the realization of what Zera had just said striking her. “Soldiers are after you?!”

“Yeah, my dad stalled for me while I ran away to the forest here.” Zera replied.

“So you must be one of the others.” Sora said, looking at Zera’s Pendant and holding onto the one around her neck.

“Others? What are you talking about?”

“My mother told me that there are other people with pendants like mine,” she held her pendant so Zera could see.

“I see,” Zera commented, admiring the way her pendant looked. “So how many are there, do you know?”

“One for each Element, and I’m a Sky Innate,” she lifted her jacket just a bit so she could show where her Element Symbol was, on the side of her hip, just below the line of her shirt.

“I’m Metal, and mine’s right here,” Zera pointed to his left knee, where his symbol was. “So there are 9 more out there?”

“I think so,” Sora replied. “And I was told we have to find each other in order to protect our pendants…What?!”

“You two! Stay where you are!” shouted a voice.

On both ends of the trail, Sora and Zera found themselves surrounded by soldiers. Somehow they had managed to catch up with them.

“Well this is a pickle,” Zera commented, bringing his sword up.

“It sure is,” Sora added, her Kama held out and ready.

“You two are to give up your weapons immediately, or you will be killed.” one soldier said. “No exceptions.”

“Is that all the ultimatum we get?” Zera asked, slightly disappointed. “I was hopping you would make it more threatening than that.”

“What? Do you want to die?!”

“That’s the only way you’ll get my pendant. By prying it from my cold, dead, fingers.” Sora replied.

“Enough! Kill them both!” The soldiers moved as one, weapons raised and ready to attack Sora and Zera. The two younger warriors readied their weapons and retaliated.

Mew Master
15th June 2003, 05:56 PM
Chapter 4: Gather Together, Pendant Bearers!

As the sun slowly started to rise over Direwood Forest, an unseasonable fog clung to the forest. Creeping around and filling every bare spot the forest allowed.

The town of Zean was the sight of the thickest fog in the entire forest. If anyone was willing to step out in this fog, they would have to have very good eyes, or else they would easily get lost.

At a chain link fence near the edge of town, someone was crouched down by the ground, waiting and watching as a small patrol made its third round in two hours. They carried torches so it made them easy to spot in the fog, but the fog was still very thick. This person was Kage, and he was waiting for his chance to move, after spending the night in his own home and trying to sleep with all of the commotion going on.

He watched as the torches started to blend in with the fog and the sounds of the men’s footsteps became silent. Kage was amazed they hadn’t noticed him, even thought they were within two meters of him, the fog obscured his figure.

Musta thought I was a bush or something… he thought as he quickly jumped over the fence and landed crouching down. But this is still so strange. Why would someone be after my pendant? And what kind of a guy is Garm anyway? He stood up, keeping his ears open for sounds of oncoming soldiers where ever they would be coming from. Nothing.

He tapped the front of his left toe on the ground as he looked around and making sure no one was there. Kage started to walk towards the forest.

“Hey you! What are you doing?! FREEZE!” shouted someone behind Kage and he jumped in shock. He spun around, his two claws whipping out of his gauntlets and ready for anyone or anything… except what he saw.

Nothing. No one was behind him, or even was starting to materializing through the fog. Then there came the sounds of a fight. Metal clashing and the grunts of some men while they were being hit, but not with any weapon.

“Hey did you hear it?!”

“Over there!” replied someone else.

Kage spun around and saw a group of soldiers start to materialize through the fog, their torches giving their position away. He let his hands hang by his sides, blades still extended.

The group of soldiers stopped at the sight of Kage just standing there.

“You there! Who are you, and why aren’t you inside?!”

Kage let out a little laugh. “Who am I?” he said, trying to sound intimidating. “I’m the one you’re after.”

They drew their swords. “So you are the one with the pendant. Are you going to give it up, or are we going to be forced to take it from you.”

Kage raised his arms. “Well, that depends. Do ya feel suicidal?” He planted his feet and got into one of his fighting stances, his fists raised and ready. “Well? Do ya?”

“Attack!” and the soldiers lunged for him, swords raised.

Jumping back, Kage ducked under one slash and sliced upward, dropping the soldier where he stood. Two more came rushing him and he flipped over them and when he landed he drop-kicked them both with a long swipe of his foot. Someone swiped down and Kage tuck-and-rolled behind him. He stood up and slammed one of his blades straight into the back of the man who had just tried to attack him. The yanked it back out and the soldier dropped over, probably going to bleed to death.

When he turned and faced the two remaining soldiers, they just ran off. Kage started to back up, preparing to turn after he was sure the soldiers who ran off weren’t going to re-enforcements.

His back bumped into someone else. Out of instinct he would have spun around and been ready to slice their head off, but something told him not to and he kept his arms by his side.

“Who’re you?” he asked.

* * *

Amalthea awoke that morning to find a dense fog surrounding her.

“Horus? Horus?! Where are you?!” she shouted, slightly startled.

“I’m here.” came a reply.

“Where?” Amal looked completely around her, Glaive held tight in her hands.

“Up here!” he shouted. “In the tree!”

Amal started to follow the voice and she saw the trunk of a tree form from the fog.

“Up this one?”


“What are you doing?”

“Hang on, and I’ll be right down.” Horus shouted back.

Amal stood back and to surprise, Horus fell down and almost hit the ground, flat on his face like yesterday, but at the last second he stopped and floated up so he would land on his feet.

“So what were you doing?” Amal asked again.

“Trying to see how bad the fog is this morning.” he replied. “It’s pretty thick, and stretches all the way to the edge of the forest itself.”

“This is the worst I’ve seen it too. We usually do have a little bit of fog, but it’s never been this thick before.”

“Then there’s the question of whether we move now, or wait till the fog clears. There were some patrols going around this area, but not as many as I thought there would be.”

“You’ve never been here have you?” Amal asked.


“I can tell. Anyone who’s lived in Direwood can find their way around without having to see everything. Which way is east?”

Horus pointed to behind her.

“Okay, then we head west. By the time we get to the edge of the forest, the fog should clear.”

“Sounds like a plan, let’s go.”

Horus slipped his weapon onto his belt and Amal still had her Glaive in her hand. Together, following Amal’s directions, they walked into the fog.

* * *

In a tree, Sora and Zera had spent the night, not wanting to spend it on the ground where soldiers might happen to spot them. They had managed to get some sleep despite the excitement of the day before.

Sora’s head felt a little weird and opened her eyes after a restless night’s sleep. She saw the gray fog, but her mind was working a little slow, so she stared at if for several seconds before it registered.

“Oh,” she mumbled. “It’s foggy out today.” She stayed there for a few more seconds. “Maybe I should wake up Zera so we can get moving…”

She looked both ways but was surprised to find that not only was Zera gone, so was the tree they had slept in. She looked up and to her surprise she saw the ground above her head, then looking down, she saw the top of the tree and her legs caught in a branch.

The realization hit her instantly. She was hanging upside-down in a tree with her legs hooked onto a branch. The reason she was feeling funny was because most of the blood had rushed to her head.


Zera was a heavy sleeper and mumbled a reply. “Who turned on the alarm?”

“GET UP!” Sora screamed.

Finally Zera opened his eyes and rubbed the sleep out of them. “What’s all the ruckus?” Then he noticed that Sora wasn’t in the tree, and her legs were sticking up through the branch. He scrambled over onto the branch and was surprised to see her upside-down in the branch.

“What happened?” he asked trying to muffle a laugh.

“I don’t know, just get me down!” she replied.

Zera looked at her jeans and the smaller branches were tangled around them. Deciding not to mess with them he reached down.

“Give me your arm.”

Sora bent her torso, and reached up with her right hand, and Zera caught the wrist. He started to pull her up.


They both stopped and looked at where the branch connected to the tree. Suddenly the branch broke and they fell to the ground below with a crash.

Sora was laying on her back, her legs still caught in the branches of the tree, Zera had landed right on the main part of the branch. They should feel a little bit of pain, but were too dazed to realize it.

Sitting up, Sora shook her head. “Now all the blood is leaving my head. It kinda feels better…”

Zera pushed himself up and sat back. “My ribs won’t feel better for a few weeks.. Ouch.”

Then there was the sound of clanging metal and they looked up. Sora’s Kama fell straight down and the point of the blade cut into the earth, just inches away from Zera’s important area.

“DAMN! What does your Kama have against me?!” he exclaimed, scooting backwards.

Sora grabbed the handle of her Kama and proceeded to hack her legs free. “Maybe because you’re not helping…” She carefully cut through the smaller branches her pants were hooked into.

Zera stood up and grabbed his Blade, which had also fell from the tree but landed on the other side of the broken branch. With one slash he cut through the bigger part of the branches connected to the main part giving Sora some better room to maneuver her Kama.

It was a few moments before she was free and they stood, wondering which way to go.

“The fog’s so thick I can’t see the sun…” Zera commented, holding a hand over his eyes.

“That would help… but still there’s all those patrols around. The fog’s slowing them down too.”

“Yeah… HUH?!” Zera exclaimed. Sora looked in the direction he was looking.

Three separate flames bounced in the fog, getting larger.

“I heard the sound this way!” a man replied.

“Oh no!” Sora and Zera mumbled and ran off down one end of the trail.

* * *

“I should ask the same.” a younger voice than the soldier’s replied to Kage’s earlier question.

“Why don’t you answer my question first?” he asked back.

“How about this,” the person stated. “On three we step forward and then face each other.”

“Okay.” Kage replied.

“Three!” they both shouted and jumped away from each other, spinning on a heel to face the person they had been standing back-to-back with.

To Kage’s slight surprise, it wasn’t a soldier that was behind him, but someone who looked slightly younger than him. Spiky hair stuck in every direction, and the guy had green eyes. Two fingerless gloves and shackles on the gloves and on his boots. His pants were a black with red slash designs on them. He was wearing a brown vest and a dull white shirt under it, a dirty yellow arm band was around the upper part of his left arm. A long katana-like sword was clutched in his hands but what got Kage’s attention was the thing hanging around this guy’s neck.

“Who are you? And where did you get that?” Kage motioned with the Claw on his right arm to the pendant around the other’s neck.

“Just call me Saké and this,” Saké motioned to the pendant. “Is from my father.” he lowered his sword. “Now who are you?”

“I’m Kage Ikagaide, and I also got this,” he motioned to the pendant hanging around his own neck. “From my father.”

He noticed a look of shock appear on Saké’s face, and the spiky-haired swordsman stuttered for a bit.

“That’s…!” but Saké was interrupted.

On all sides of the fighters, soldiers came from the fog, each having their swords raised and ready to attack. Saké and Kage backed up, only to find themselves up against each other’s backs once again.

“I think the time for introductions is over.” Kage commented

“Well, how about we introduce these numb-skulls to our blades?” Saké replied, giving a smart-aleck smirk.

“Fine by me.” Kage replied a smile on his face. He liked this new guy.

“Are you two going to give up?”

“Hardly.” Saké replied.

“Can’t you idiots come up with any better threats?” Kage added.

Before the Captain could order his men to attack, Saké and Kage jumped into the fray, weapons ready, in different directions.

Kage moved fast, and sliced a few stomachs open on his first pass. He impaled another soldier who had gotten too close. There came the sharp sense of pain in his back and he twirled around, roundhouse kicking a man’s head back. Kage stopped to touch where the pain was, he winced a bit and brought his hand back, he could smell his won blood.

“You cut me you moron,” Kage spat before spinning like a top and cut the throats of four soldiers who started to get close.

Before Kage could react, four soldiers came in from behind and grabbed onto his arms and neck, trying to restrain him. Kage was starting to lose his temper, and nothing survived when he lost his cool.


He thrust his arms together, smashing two soldier’s heads together, breaking their grip on his arms. Then his fists went back, the blades locking under their lower jaws. He used his own body as a pivot and tossed the two men over his shoulders and to the ground, dead before they hit. There was one more remaining, the one that had grabbed onto Kage’s neck. Before Kage could whip around and slice into the man’s chest, the man jumped back, two pairs of dual claws from places on his own wrist.

“This should be interesting..” Kage thought out loud.

Saké jumped and flipped over the soldier’s heads, landing behind them. He drop-kicked two, but two more began to flank him. Putting his sword in his left hand he clenched his right into a fist. Pulling it back until it was at his side, he started concentrating. The fog was thick, but the sun’s rays could be seen peeking over the top of the mist and they began to be pulled down towards Saké’s fist. Light began to form around his right fist, getting larger until a sphere enveloped most of his arm, the center of the light ball being his fist.

“Go, Photon Blast!” he shouted and extended his right arm and opened his hand.

The sphere of pure light blasted away from Saké’s hand, connected by a beam that came from the center of his palm, and still surrounded his hand. He aimed for the group of soldiers he had jumped over, not at them exactly, but at the ground in the center of the mob. The Photon Blast attack exploded when it slammed into the ground. The resulting shockwave blasted the soldiers away in separate directions, bruised and battered, but still alive.

Kage bent his legs and let his arms hand at his sides, claws still out. The man with the dual claws lunged for him and he swung up. His right claw slashed up, cutting the claws, and the soldier’s head, in half.

Hearing some shouting behind him, Kage spun and landed one of his claws right into the stomach of a rookie soldier. The rookie just stood there, the sword still raised above his head. He forced himself to look down and into Kage’s burning red and black eyes. Kage shot the rookie a smirking, bloodthirsty, grin, and it sent a shiver up the cadet’s spine.

Kage twisted his claw just a bit, and the rookie winced in pain, then he raised the rookie over his head. His claw was thrust right up to his knuckles, blood running down his arm and spattering the ground. More blood started to flow from the corner of the rookie’s mouth. Thrusting his other claw, Kage impaled the cadet’s chest several times in a few seconds and then finally let it rest there. More blood flowed down his arm and stained the earth beneath him.

Finally Kage raised the rookie a little higher, before swinging him down, head-first, to the ground. The cadet’s head and shoulders smashed into the ground, more blood leaked and soaked into the moist earth.

Black energy began to swirl and sway around Kage’s right hand. It got larger, energy circling his fist. He raised his arm, and the energy blasted everywhere. “GRAVITONE!“ Soldiers who had just entered the area were forced to their stomachs, gravity suddenly increasing. The force became so much, their lungs collapsed, killing them, and the corpses that already littered the area were crushed until they were unidentifiable pulps of bone and blood.

Kage lowered his arm, and released the switches on his gauntlets. His claws went back into their locked positions. He popped his neck and then called out. “Saké! You still alive?!”

“Of course I’m still alive!” Saké replied as he thrust the butt end of his sword handle up and into the chin of the last soldier he had to fight. The man was flipped into the air and came crashing down again, out cold.

Denisu Wamiyazen hadn’t killed any of the soldiers he had fought in the last few minutes. The Shrine’s teachings condemned any form of killing, and death was something Saké wasn’t accustomed to at all, especially after his mother’s death. He slipped his sword onto the sheath on his back and started making his way to where he had heard Kage shout a second ago.

His feet plodded on the ground until they kicked something and Saké looked down at it. At first it looked like one of the helmets the soldier’s were wearing, but something was pouring out of it. Saké looked at it for a bit longer and found out what it was, a severed human head.

“AAAAAHHHH!” Saké jumped back at the sight. It wasn’t the mere fact that there was blood, just the shock of seeing an actual human head not attached to a body. Then he noticed that there was blood and bodies everywhere around him.

Then Kage came running through the fog, Claws extended and ready for more fighting. “What happened?” Then he noticed the bodies around us. “Oh, that.”

“Oh that?!” Saké was trying to get his combination of shock and anger into words. “You killed them!”

“So? It’s either them or us, and don’t plan on dying anytime soon.” he replied, with a touch of smugness.

Saké saw the blood on Kage’s claws and forearms, and sighed. Kage appeared to be ruthless, but Denisu saw a different side to him when he looked into Kage’s eyes. “Okay, now what do we do? Moving around in this fog is pointless.”

“Yeah, but remaining in one spot isn’t exactly the smartest idea in the world either.” Kage replied.

The two warriors looked at each other.

“Let’s move.” they said as one and started to run from the scene, and away from Zean.