Chapter Forty-One – Demon Danger, Double D
It had been a couple days since the Christmas fiasco with Tyreth and Noah, and despite the fact that their lives may have become much more complicated due to it all, Eldrian decided to go about his business as he always did. He wasn’t one to dwell on the past, or sit still for long. So he made his way down the streets garbed in regular attire. Not a person who walked by knew of his worries—magic, demons, elves. He was used to this, however, as that was the way for a wizard.
Lucy gave him important information on the potential whereabouts of a runaway demon, right there in Edmonton. She was called Zayna. Apparently, her entrance to Earth was sloppy enough to allow both Lucy and Eldrian to find her path rather quickly. He knew of course that demons were cunning, so he kept a keen eye open as he neared the building that possible housed the target, but he swore he felt eyes upon him.
Demons normally tried to blend in to humanity. Therefore, he felt no reason not to simply knock on the front door of the small home. They’d have no reason to believe he was anything but a neighbour, or maybe a scout selling cookies.
Chapter Twenty-Eight – Party Like It’s 1499
The view itself, even though they had seen it before, was something not of this world. Or perhaps it was exactly the opposite, and that’s what made it seem so pure and uplifting. When gazing off a mountain to take in the hundreds of kilometres of even taller mountains and an ocean of trees, there’s something that awakens in everybody. It’s the thought of what the Earth might look like if there was hardly a touch from humanity’s hands. But where they stood at that moment, there were ruined walls of stone atop the plateau. They had allowed a day of rest, and then they returned to Machu Picchu.
Rend, Ron, Dylan, and Xeno were all contained in the Demon World, and they had become Lucy’s problem instead. Asta fell upon her own blade as well, which finally ceased the influx of threats falling upon the group. There wasn’t even a drop left of the Elixir of Strength.
There was still a bitter feeling mixed within the sweet. None of them had wanted to kill the woman behind it all, and something about her tale bothered Eldrian even more. But he knew he couldn’t allow it to bring him down, especially during a time meant for celebration. Now all five stood at the entrance of the hidden Inca civilization they had met before most of what occurred.
“This place is beautiful,” whispered Renatta. “There is really a secret city here?”
Chapter Twenty-Seven – The Last Victim
Kevin lunged once again at the spellbreaker, crashing the blue blade of Drodias against her magic shield. The collision sent out a burning flash of sparks down the line of impact, and her forward push sent him back like before. And when Eldrian tried another spell, she was quick enough to break it to pieces.
The two knew they needed a plan. A simple swing would always be blocked, and spells would be countered as long as she was focused—and she seemed to be quite adept at such.
“Your magic is useless,” Asta declared.
“So I cast sword!” shouted Kevin as he began another assault of slashes.
His strikes were blocked by her shield, but also parried by a few swings of her mace. He had been practicing, but she was older than him, and had clearly been doing this much longer than him. But he tried nonetheless. Kevin didn’t want to fail his friends despite his lack of actual magic ability.
“You’re quick with that blade, and it’s clearly special, but it won’t be enough,” said Asta rather calmly even in the midst of combat.
Chapter Twenty-Six – Like Ants
“Remember what I said. I’m not going to say it again. Actually, there’s no need for any words. I’m being trusted with a job, and I intend to impress,” Deena said.
Ron shook his head. “Ya nothin’ but talk. Come here, girl. Let me teach ya a lesson.”
He kicked a chunk of soil from beneath his heavy foot, and like a bald panther, he lunged forward to swing forward his fingers to hopefully grapple the witch within his powerful arms. However, he was met with naught but air. A word that should not be repeated escaped his lips, and immediately, his blank white eyes began scanning to locate Deena just a few meters forwards.
“Ya can’t run forever,” he muttered. “Oh. Ya really aren’t talkin’ now, huh? Whatever. Now come back here!”
A putrid grin stretched across his face as he knelt down to lift two large rocks up in each hand. He fired each off as if he was a catapult.
She raised up both of her hands to create a shimmering ward of magic, which barely absorbed the crushing weight of the stones. She clenched her teeth, and let out a grunting exhale, but she soon dropped her spell and moved to the offensive.
Chapter Twenty-Five – Like Soldiers
There they stood within Deena’s abode, five in total: Kevin the ginger warrior, Daveon the handsome druid, Deena the little witch, Renatta the fire ninja, and Eldrian the aspiring wizard. They were in circle looking towards one another, as Eldrian just finished explaining everything he knew to those who were out of the loop—about Asta, the thugs, and the upcoming battle.
“So we’re expecting to run into a guy with mind control powers, and a guy who has indestructible skin, on top of a spellbreaker, which is apparently the thing that counters all of your powers?” Kevin asked.
“Yes,” Eldrian replied.
“You know I’ll help you, but how do we deal with this? It sounds even more dangerous than the giant Dylan thing.”
“Planning, and a lot of improvising, like usual.”
Deena crossed her arms and gathered their attention. “Eldrian and I have been discussing what to do. They all have unique abilities that need to be dealt with. If only those three are there as threats, we need to figure out who is best made to handle each one. There’s five of us, which means two of them can be dealt two of us instead of one, and I imagine Asta is on the top of that list.”
Chapter Twenty-Four – The Lonely Bull
Even when I was little, my father taught me how to be tough, because that was the only way he knew to make me strong. We trained with blunt sticks. I thought it was infuriating at first, but I grew to enjoy that time we spent together, and I’ll never forget when the day came that I knocked the stick out of his hands. Neither did he, I assume, because I knew it wasn’t raining, even if he told me it was.
But this story isn’t about my dad and I. Xeno, Ron, you both fill me with rage. I hope you know that. I’m sharing with you why you’re here only because soldiers need substance behind their fighting, I assume. That’s what my dad told me once. So sit back and I’ll tell you a bit of it, and you better damn well listen closely. I’m not repeating a thing. All right? Good. Though, I don’t know why I’d need to explain why magic is bad in the first place. You both experienced it first-hand. Twice.
Again, back to my father, but that’s where I have to start. I’m a descendent of the Bull clan of spellbreakers. Whether one realizes it or not, all spellbreakers come from one of many clans named after animals. That’s what my dad told me, anyway. He possessed no abilities himself. They skip generations, sometimes several, leaving some lost from their ancestral connections completely. He knew I had the abilities of a spellbreaker, so he had me practice. You might think this is why I hate wizards, and it might be part of it, but this isn’t the reason, no. It’s simply how I managed to enter this wizard’s world that hardly a person knows about.
Chapter Twenty-Three – Twisted
Renatta no longer reflected the image of a deadly assassin. Instead, she wore fine red clothes, and not unlike in the way of a belly dancer. Her footwear slipped on, like flats, and in the end, Eldrian thought she resembled moreso a genie, but he also assumed if genies were real, they wouldn’t be armed with blades.
“I barely remember,” she whispered. “But I do have fleeting memories of a building. A small house, at the border of the city. It was old, worn, and next thing I knew, everything was spinning and twisting. I heard a voice in my head, and snickering, and here I am. I am sorry I do not remember more. I can take you to the place, though, at the very least. And then we can burn him up!”
She flexed her arm, and upon the edge of her knuckles sprouted a roaring fire. Eldrian winced back a step or two after feeling the wave of warmth come over his skin.
“Careful with that,” he muttered.
“Oops. Sorry,” she said in response, snuffing out the flame.