Sage of Raw Honey
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Inside your television!
Rep Power: 9
Re: Tomorrow Forever.
014 – Sludge
The boy was navigating well. We found a small torch hanging on the wall, and lit it using sparks from my sword. In the dim light, we could make out outlines of rats running along the sewer walls, scampering left and right along the rotting food and other rats. The swish of the ever flowing sewer water resounded off of the concrete walling of the drain pipe. Just a sad remnant of the peace that once clouded my mind hung over us, like a cloud of smog blotting the sun in the sky.
“So I think we’re about halfway from the city border. Once we cross that, it’s a mile or two until the sewer lets out,” said Suri.
“Yea...alright,” I said. “Look, keep up the pace. We can’t let Michael find us now.”
“Relax. One of the few places where there are no guards positioned is down here, so there’s a good chance we’re safe.”
“Funny. I get the impression that Michael isn’t the one to let a criminal like me slip out of his hands due to some sewer water.”
“This is Makai sewer water,” Suri said. “Watch.” As he said this, he turned on a dime and kicked a small rat into the water. The rat squealed, and it’s body was immediately incinerated upon contact with the water.
“What the...hell?” I asked.
“That’s one of the industrial district’s many byproducts. That coupled with the occasional flows of acid rain, and the many beautiful products you see on most of our cityfolk,” Suri said with a slight chuckle.
I stopped, choking up a bit. I couldn’t contain it. “Tell me. What do you think of your glorious first knight?”
“What?” Suri asked. “What’re you talking about?”
“I just want to know what you think of the man that destroyed your entire center of economy without a second glance.”
Suri stopped. “What the hell are you talking about?”
“You heard me. Your precious Michael just obliterated your entire industrial district, all to kill one small, defenseless boy. That boy was me.”
Suri once again spun on his heel, drawing a pair of kodachi from behind him. “So, do you mind telling me what the hell you did to warrant the destruction of the livelihoods of all those people? Michael isn’t the type of guy to just destroy so much aimlessly.”
I slowly laughed. “I thought I told you, I didn’t do a damn thing. I was falsely accused of an utterly heinous crime.”
“Like hell! Michael doesn’t falsely accuse! He was sent directly by God to judge the wicked, so you obviously did something horribly wrong.”
“Shut your damn mouth, you’ve never met him, so stop talking about him as if he’s a hero!”
“Shut up!” Suri screamed, spinning his blades towards my throat. I whipped Ephesus up, blocking the two swords. He jumped back, and I backed up a step. I didn’t want to fight him, but he came at me again, jumping into the air, slamming his two blades into mine. Suddenly there was a slithering sound, and two more arms, holding two more blades shot from his cloak. I yelped, and a ghostly sword appeared, as if of its own will, blocking the approaching blades. “What the hell?” Suri screamed, jumping backwards. He grunted, jumping into the air, and launched himself against a wall. He then jumped off, slamming his feet towards me. I raised my swords to block attack, and he broke into a wide smile. He pushed off with his feet, and I fell backwards, off the path, and towards the bubbling, revolting water. I turned as I fell, and another four ghostly swords appeared, preventing me from being deep fried. I flipped on my hands, launching myself to the opposite river bank.
“So, are you ready to listen to my story, or are you still going to judge me unjustly?”
“You’re fighting back, aren’t you? That’s proof enough for me!” Suri yelled.
“What are you talking about? I’m not fighting back, I’m defending myself. Even if I was guilty, it wouldn’t have made a difference. I have to live, so there isn’t any chance of me letting myself die,” I said.
“Are you serious? That’s the lamest excuse I’ve ever heard!” He began to grab at the two blades, but suddenly, without my bidding, skeletal hands shot from the wall, binding him. He squirmed, yelling, when suddenly, a crackling arrow flew just inches from his face.
“I’ve got to hand it to you. You really put ole stoneface’s knickers in a bunch. What’d you say your name was?”
Agravain’s arrow missed the boy’s nose by an inch, but the lightning crackling around the edges shocked him, sending him writhing in pin. The boy on the adjacent side stared at him in utter disbelief.
“Well come on now, don’t look so happy to see me! I’m kind of in awe of your presence! The mighty Gareth cant kill a single little boy? You must be tough stuff there. So enlighten me. What’s your name?”
The boy’s eyes darkened. “Why should I tell you my name? Who the hell are you?”
Agravain chuckled. “Of course, how rude of me. I’m Agravain, former Fourth Knight of Fate, and now one of the three Heads of Hydra. Pleasure to make your acquaintance.”
The boy on the wall stopped howling in pain long enough to pant out a few words. “Agravain...He’s a terrorist, kid. There isn’t a point in talking to him if you still want to be innocent. Here’s your chance to prove yourself.”
The boy didn’t hear him. “So you’re saying that you’re spot was taken by Gareth?”
Agravain’s smile faltered. “Yes, that’s correct.”
“So by my logic, he’s stronger than you. Which makes you weak. Which makes this an easy fight,” he said, launching across the four swords floating over the water. Agravain barely had enough time to swing his arrows up in an arc above him, blocking the odd-shaped blade.
“What the hell is up with you kid? I was trying to have a decent conversation!”
“Well, for starters, you usually don’t a conversation by throwing arrows at your target audience’s only friend. Secondly, the knights are an honorable organization, so you have to be a real criminal to go against them. Thirdly, my name is Lavernius James Poloro, and I’m not a big fan of evil things.”
With that, the boy flipped backwards, and three translucent blades flew towards Agravain. Agravain jumped, kicking off the wall, jumping over the blades, which crashed into the water behind Agravain. Agravain landed on a metal pipe along the ceiling, attaching to it with lightning on his feet. Slamming an open palm in the boy’s direction, Agravain laughed bitterly.
“Sorry little guy. Pudistaa!”
I watched as a ball of pure lightning, shaped like a skull, flew at me. I got into a defensive position, but before he could move, seven incandescent blades shot up, forming a wall. The lightning smashed into the wall, jumping from blade to blade, crackling sharply. The blades began to slowly be pushed towards me, and I backed up to the wall. Suddenly, the arms binding Suri disappeared, reappearing behind the blade, supporting the force of the lightning. Suri collapsed, panting.
I ran over to him, placing my hand on his back. “Hey, are you alright?”
“Don’t worry about me, damn it. He’s your target.”
I turned back towards the electricity and blades, staring intently at the wall of swords and bones. I smiled, and suddenly, all the blades dissipated. I grabbed Suri and dove out of the way immediately, as the cobblestones and concrete exploded in sparks. Agravain turned towards me, and I burst out laughing, as four blades, crimson, instead of silver, flew at an alarming speed towards him. He jumped off the pillar, but the blades, instead of flying straight, curved midair, without my doing, and locked in on his position. He gasped, as each blade cut him shallowly, despite his brief midair dodge. He fell to the ground, gasping.
“So, Agravain. Do you think you can leave now? I have places to go.”
Agravain grunted, rising to his feet. “Fat chance, skinny boy. I’ve only gotten started.” With that, he stood up, but crimson skeletal hands shot out of the wall, grabbing his arms. He smiled faintly, and tensed all his muscles. “Laine.”
Immediately, a wave of electricity ran over his body, frying the skeletal arms that covered him from head to toe. He immediately launched, a trail of electricity coating his feet, at me. I tried to raise my sword, and slashed at his legs. However, inches before I made contact with his legs, I was greeted with a massive shock of electricity. I screamed, and collapsed, howling to the floor.
“Looks like you aren’t too strong after all. Might as well kill you here to save you the trouble of living through a weak life.”
He raised an arrow, preparing to slice down at my head. The arrow plunged, but instead of piercing my heart, it was stopped by two small blades. Two more blades shot out, slicing Agravain’s midsection deeply. Agravain stumbled back, and two arms shot out, punching him square in the face. Agravain fell back on his back, gasping for air.
“I thought Vern told you,” I heard Suri say. “You don’t ever threaten my only friend.”
I looked up, staring at Suri. Minutes ago, the boy had wanted to kill me, and now he was calling me his friend. I was shocked, and apparently he was surprised too.
“Just get up and leave, if you know what’s good for you. It’s two on one.”
“Two on two, actually,” a deep voice resounded from down the hall.
Agravain turned his head at the sound of Marcus’ voice.
“My lord, how did you get down here so fast? You sure have a pair of legs on you Mark. Just got horrible timing.”
The black man turned and stared at Agravain. “One of the heads of Hydra being beaten by a bunch of kids…that sure is pathetic. You’re lucky I sprinted the entire way here.”
“Sprinted?” Agravain said. “Why?”
“Michael doubled his search drones. My swords make it tough to hide in the shadows, so the only way I can avoid capture is through pure sprints. It’s a simple thing.”
“Right. Anyway, we have to go. Despite being our planned route of escape, these sewers sure have surprises. I’m glad we had this session, boys!” Agravain said with a smirk. He stood up, picked an arrow up off the ground, and began walking away, twirling it in his hand.
Suri turned. “Hey, where the hell do you think you’re going?”
“I got bored. I’m going home,” Agravain replied.
“Like hell you are! Get your skinny ass back here!” Suri said, sprinting forward. He whipped his two blades across, but the second before they hit Agravain’s neck, they were stopped by two other blades.
“You continue your assault, and you are as good as dead. No man who has crossed swords with me has ever walked away victorious,” Marcus said, emotionless.
Jesus Christ, Suri said, no one can be that fast! I didn’t even see him move.
“If you follow us, you will perish. I suggest you find a different route.”
I lay, staring up at the ceiling. Circles of smoke rolled off my charred body, but I felt little pain. I sat for quite a while, mustering up the will to speak, until Suri came over to me.
“I know what you’re going to ask. How could I go from fighting you to saving you in such a short time? Well, to be honest, I’m not really sure myself.”
“Don’t…monologue…to me,” I said.
“Well you’re in no position to talk, but I am. In all honesty, when I first found you, I thought you were just a kid, who went through some tough times, just like me. Then, of course, you dragged me on this wild escape thing, and I got interested. Your speech about the guards, and keeping them alive, really put doubts into my mind about you being a criminal. But when you started badmouthing the symbol of honor in our land, it kind of sent me into a rage.
“You see, my dad died a year ago protecting the honor that Michael lives for. Even though I’ve never met him, I look up to Michael as a guiding light, no pun intended. My dad was all I had, and when he died, I was alone. Then you ran into me. You’re really the first person to have a semi-intelligent conversation with me in while. And when you called me a friend, without even knowing me, and diving into protect me… that’s the type of honor Michael stands for. That’s what Dad died for. So after I get you out of here, I’m going to stick around for a bit, if only to see if you’re the real deal.”
I sat up, laughing a bit. “Sounds good to me. I could use the extra hand.”
Suri smiled. “Thanks. I don’t know if I’ve said it, but I’m Suri. You said your name is Lavernius?”
“Call me Vern,” I said. “Welcome to the gang.”
The old lady stared up at the four cloaked men in the white room. She drew out her book slowly, beginning to say the line that she had rehearsed so many times. However, before she could start, the man in front slowly placed his hand on hers.
“Excuse me miss. I wouldn’t happen to be dead, would I?” said the man, who slowly pulled back his cloak to reveal a perfectly bald head.
Teddie isn't here anymore. Goodbye.