Sundown – Chapter 21 (Part 1)

[11th of September, 2740 AD; Old Church Steps, Helm, Ahnlikohn]


Korbin flaunted his sword. “Bring it on, Sorin Wilk!”

The air felt warm on Sorin’s face as he gripped the handle of his sword. He had no idea how Korbin was going to attack but had to anticipate anything. Sorin knew that this was not just a random enemy, but an Ameci soldier that knew of Sorin’s father. Whatever Korbin had planned, Sorin had to stay on his toes.

“I can see the look upon your face,” Korbin said. “That’s the look of uncertainty. The look of a man that hesitates to kill when given the chance. Well, allow me to show you what I’m made of!”

In that moment, Korbin rushed Sorin, swinging his sword swiftly. Sorin stopped each successive strike with his sword. With each attack, Sorin struggled to find an opening for a counterattack. Korbin’s wild and almost unpredictable attacks continued to keep Sorin on guard.

“What’s the matter, Sorin?” Korbin asked. “I haven’t even begun to sweat and you look like you’re ready to drop to your knees!”

Sorin stood his ground, blade raised. “You certainly didn’t lie about being good with a sword,” he said. “Who did you learn from?”

“So you like my style, don’t you? Well, I guess I can share that bit with you,” Korbin said. “Well, it’s a bit off the style that my dad says is from Lauren Ahga, whoever the fuck that is.”

“Wait, you can’t possibly mean that you know Sir Lauren, do you?” Rain asked.

“Hey, it’s like I said: I don’t know who that is,” Korbin replied. “Dad just tells me and I learn it through strenuous and torturous training.”

“Torturous?” Sorin asked.

“Don’t tell me you haven’t experienced it,” Korbin said. “Everything I’ve done was the result of pain thanks to my old man. Hell, I can still remember the scars he gave me years ago.”

“I don’t even know what I can say about that,” Sorin said.

“Ah, but you really didn’t get the chance to spend a lot of time with your dad, did you?” Korbin asked. “They said that he was a warrior of compassion, always sparing those he fought. Hah, like that’s believable!”

Sorin frowned. “Excuse me?”

“You really believe that shit? Seriously, who would fucking do a thing like that,” Korbin said. “It’d be easier just to end those worthless lives just like that, you know?”

“Are you trying to making me mad?” Sorin asked.

“I’m trying to have a fight here,” Korbin replied, “So make with it and fight me already!”

Sorin felt his anger rising towards Korbin, who stood there as he awaited the next attack. Korbin relaxed his stance, which left himself wide open. It almost seemed too easy for Sorin to strike next, almost as if Korbin expected it to happen. Because he felt that such an attack would prove foolish, Sorin continued to stay where he was.

“You’re almost too calm there,” Sorin said. “Are you sure that you’re not trying to lure me into your next attack?”

Korbin rested the back of his sword on his shoulder. “Only one way to find out, right? Better do it now, or else…”

“I’ve got no choice, then,” Sorin replied.

Sorin charged forth at Korbin. The tip of Sorin’s blade edged closer and closer to Korbin, who turned his body at the last moment. As Korbin brought his sword down, Sorin spun around and raised his sword to block the attack. The sharp clash of the two blades pushed Sorin and Korbin against each other as they both tried to best the other.

“Looks like my intuition was correct,” Korbin said. “The son of Kirk Wilk is quite as good!”

“You forgot one thing, Korbin,” Sorin replied.

“What’s that?”

Sorin increased the grip on the handle. “I’m not him.”

Korbin felt the sudden pushback as Sorin kicked out his leg and tripped him. As Korbin dropped to his knee, Sorin held up his sword in a defensive pose. Korbin wasted no time getting back up on both feet as he started to laugh.

“What’s so funny now?” Sorin asked.

“I haven’t had a fight this exciting in a while,” Korbin replied. “Usually I just win in a matter of seconds, but you… you really can put up a fight!”

Sorin had no time to respond as Korbin rushed him again. With each swing of Korbin’s sword, Sorin matched it with a block of his own. There looked to be no end in sight to the Ameci soldier’s energy as Sorin continued to block each attack. Then, Korbin landed a strike upon Sorin’s blade, which proved strong enough to knock Sorin to the ground.

Sorin picked up his sword. “Damn it!”

Sorin rolled out of the way as Korbin swung his sword down. As he got up and standing again, Sorin found himself on the defensive once more. The two moved around the front yard of the church, their movements being tracked by the others watching.

“You think someone’s going to come save you?” Korbin asked.

Sorin kept defending each blow with his sword. “What?”

“That friend of yours, Johan Kuu, is it? He’s not going to save your ass,” Korbin replied. “If you really want to stop this, then you know what to do!”

Sorin did not respond. Instead, he charged forth towards Korbin again. Once again, the two men fought with their swords clashing against one another. Another slash, another defend. Now Sorin just wanted to prove a point. He wanted to prove that he was not going to back down. Sorin wanted to prove to Korbin that he was not about to let the Ameci soldier run amuck, doing as he pleased.

“You’re doing a lot better,” Korbin said, “There’s that fire I’ve been waiting for!”

“I’m not going to let you get away with this!” Sorin exclaimed.

With a swing of his sword, Sorin struck Korbin’s blade and caught Korbin off guard. As Korbin backed up, Sorin stood in place as he awaited for what would happen next. Korbin then decided to sheath his sword and laugh, which led to confusion on Sorin’s part.

“Any more like that and you might’ve actually hit me!” Korbin said. “That’s all for now, though.”

Sorin sheathed his sword as well. “You mean that?”

“I just wanted to test you, that was all,” Korbin replied. “Besides, I believe we both learned a little about each other, didn’t we?”

“That doesn’t make sense,” Sorin said.

“You’d be a fool to think I see you as a threat,” Korbin said. “What’s the point? We’re practically on the same side, you and I!”

“I doubt that,” Sorin replied. “You still have to hold up your end of the bargain, don’t you?”

Korbin’s mouth was agape as he laughed. “Well, you certainly are persistent,” he said, “But you’re right. I guess it’s up to me now, isn’t it?”

“You want to just hurry it the fuck up already?” Gavin asked. “Sorin’s already played your little game long enough, so just hand her over, asshole.”

“Certainly, certainly,” Korbin replied. “Erik! You heard the guy in the sunglasses! Let’s get this over with!”

“Alright, then,” Erik said, pulling Silvia along with him. “Come on, you.”

“Oh thank god,” Ayanna said. “You’re not hurt, are you, Silvia?”

Silvia kept herself quiet.

“We’ll have to ask you a few questions when you go back to prison, but at least I’m glad that you’re safe,” Ayanna continued.

“I guess she’s in such a glorious state of shock that she’s got no words,” Bradley said. “It’s a bit anticlimactic, but I guess you guys are going to get what you want, won’t you?”

“Hey, Sorin, you mind moving a little?” Korbin asked.

Sorin felt as if he were caught off guard by that question. “What for?”

“I want to help see the poor girl off,” Korbin replied. “After all she’s been through, I’m sure she deserves a little help to the end.”

He walked over to where Erik and Silvia were and extended his hand. Erik nodded as he handed Silvia over to Korbin. With the two men nodding to each other once more, Korbin led Silvia towards Ayanna and the others.

“Ah, but don’t you think that this is a little too boring, Silvia?” Korbin asked.

Silvia looked back at Korbin. “What do you mean?”

Korbin looked over at Ayanna. “She’s a friend of yours, ain’t she? What’s more touching than to have a moment the two of you will never forget?”

“Dare I ask what you’re talking about?” Ayanna asked.

Korbin cracked a devious smile. “I mean this!”

In that instant, Korbin pulled out the knife from the back of his belt and stabbed Silvia in the back. The sudden, painful shock brought Silvia’s eyes wide as she coughed up blood.

Ayanna exclaimed. “Silvia!”

Silvia was not able to move. “But… why?”

Korbin chose not to respond and instead pulled his knife from out of her back, only to stab her once more. With another stab in the back, Korbin dropped Silvia to the ground as Ayanna hurried over to her side.

“I’m sorry… Ayanna…”

Ayanna held Silvia in her arms. “Don’t be,” she said as tears formed in her eyes, “It’s not your fault. It’s not your fault.”

Gavin clenched his fist and directed his sights at Korbin. “You piece of shit! What the fuck is wrong with you!? You were supposed to hand her over unharmed!”

“Now where did you get that idea?” Korbin asked. “I was only going to hand her over; it doesn’t matter if she’s dead, right?”

“The fuck did you just say?” Gavin asked.

“Hey, you should be thanking me,” Korbin replied. “I basically did Iiayikohn a favor by disposing of her. That’s good enough to be called a hero, isn’t it?”

“You’re no hero!” Mina shouted. “You just killed a defenseless woman for no reason!”

“Of course I had a reason,” Korbin said. “She’s a True Thekohnian, so she had to be taken care of. Especially since she had a hand in killing that prime minister!”

“She wasn’t responsible for the prime minister’s death,” Law said. “That was a different party altogether.”

“You’d be surprised how fast the news travels,” Korbin replied. “On the way here, Bradley and I decided to listen to a little radio. News station said that the Iiayikohnian government found a couple of suspects in the assassination of Alan Berry.”

“That’s right,” Law said. “My bro and I caught the guys responsible.”

“Ah, good for you,” Korbin said, “But you see, that doesn’t matter to me. What matters is that she was the last one seen with the prime minister. That’s all the evidence in the world to me and my boys.”

“Besides, you two could’ve just caught the wrong people,” Erik said. “Now her, here, she’s the real deal. A True Thekohnian, no less!”

“Like I said: doing a favor for you all,” Korbin said. “Now can I ask that lieutenant general  to stop her pathetic display of crocodile tears? It’s really getting on my nerves.”

Ayanna looked down at Silvia’s now lifeless body. “I’m the one who should be saying ‘sorry,’ Silvia,” she said. “The only thing I can do now is make sure that your death won’t be for naught.”

She rested Silvia over to the side and stood to her feet. As she wiped the tears out of her eyes, Ayanna pulled out her gun and aimed it at Korbin.

“You wretched, deplorable waste of a human,” she said. “Have you little regard for the lives of others? All you are is a heartless killer!”

Korbin gave a jovial smile. “So?”

“So? So you’ve killed my friend!” Ayanna exclaimed. “I should just kill you where you stand!”

“Then do it,” Korbin replied. “You know who my dad is, right? I’m sure he’d be delighted to deal with the likes of you.”

“His father’s quite a big deal,” Bradley said. “Has connections all over the place. I’m sure there’d be no time wasted in erasing you.”

Ayanna held her stance. “I’m not afraid of your empty threats.”

“Oh, they’re not empty,” Korbin said. “There’s a name they gave my old man. Perhaps you’ve heard of it? ‘The Ruthless Ameci of the Underworld,’ that’s what they call him.”

“Ayanna, you don’t have to fight him,” Law said. “Because I’m just as willing to do it for you!”

Law jumped forward and rushed Korbin, hoping to land a hit. However, Korbin could see it coming and grabbed Law. He wrapped his arm around Law’s neck and produced his knife once more.

“Lawrence!” Ayanna yelled.

Gavin whipped out his gun and aimed it at Korbin. “Let him go, asshole!”

“If you really want me to unhand him, then do as I say,” Korbin said. “Drop your weapons, leave here, and pretend none of this ever happened.”

“Like hell we will!” Gavin exclaimed.

“Yeah, we’re not going to waste any time taking care of you,” Mina said, “There’s more of us than there are of you!”

“Right,” Sorin said. “What you’ve done is unforgivable, Korbin!”

“Guys, stand down,” Law said. “It’s not worth the trouble to deal with these guys.”

“Don’t worry, Lawrence,” Gavin said, “I’ve got my gun trained on his fucking head!”

“No, bro, it’s seriously not worth it,” Law replied. “Take it from me: it’s better to run from a fight as long as everyone survives.”

Ayanna looked at Korbin, and then to Law. “As much as I would love to deal with this murderer, I have to agree,” she said as she put away her gun. “Revenge is not worth the cost of another, especially if it can be avoided.”

“You’d still trust him?” Gavin asked.

“I’ve got nothing to do with this guy,” Korbin said. “What would I gain from killing him? Nothing.”

Gavin continued to stare Korbin down, but withdrew his gun. Korbin then let Law go, shoving him forward. Ayanna welcomed Law with a hug as she held him close to her.

“I really wish I could’ve done more, love,” Law said.

“You’ve done enough,” Ayanna replied. “It’s me who should have done more. I couldn’t save Silvia…”

“Don’t blame yourself,” Law said.

“If there’s a person to blame, it’s that man,” Rain said as she pointed at Korbin. “Have you no honor?”

“What are you talking about?” Korbin asked. “Me and Sorin agreed to a fight and I honored my end of the deal.”

He laughed as Rain walked up to him until she was face to face with him.

“To carry out such a cruel act and laugh it off as if it’s nothing is beyond atrocious,” she said. “Up until now, I did not believe that there was a person as twisted as you are. Unfortunately, it looks as if I am wrong about that.”

Korbin laughed again. “Oh, you’re serious? That’s truly hilarious! I haven’t been this entertained in forever!”

“Come on, Korb,” Bradley said. “Let’s just get out of here. No reason to keep ourselves occupied with this bunch.”

“I guess you’re right,” Korbin replied. “Hey, Sorin, it’s been a fun time, but looks like these guys are getting bored. Maybe we should have a little fun again sometime in the future?”

Sorin wanted nothing more than to deal with Korbin himself, but instead used his self-restraint. “You’re going to sorely disappointed,” he said. “Just take your guys and get the hell out of here.”

“Oh, don’t be too sad, Sorin,” Korbin said. “This is only the beginning, after all. You really do excite me, you know that?”

At that moment, both Johan and Pariton arrived behind the group. Korbin caught sight of Johan and frowned in an instant.

“You’re too late,” Korbin said. “I got bored and decided to take care of our little problem myself.”

Johan’s eyes lit up. “Oh my god, don’t tell me…”

He hurried past Gavin and Mina and saw for himself. Silvia’s corpse lay on the grass as Ayanna wrapped her coat around the body. Johan lowered his head as Pariton walked up to his side.

“I’m very sorry things didn’t go as planned, Mr. Johan,” Pariton said as he patted Johan on the back.

“We were too late,” Johan said.

“Sad that you couldn’t get to her first?” Korbin asked. “Just goes to show that a meddler like you is only good when he’s out of the way.”

“That’s not what I’m upset about,” Johan replied. “It’s clear that that woman meant a lot to Miss Ansa over there. I had my doubts about you, but I didn’t think you’d take it this far!”

“Shit, all of you are on your high horses today,” Korbin said. “Not like I care, anyway. I got what I wanted out of this, so what good does it do for me to keep talking to you?”

“You owe an apology,” Johan said. “An apology to Lieutenant General Ayanna Ansa, if not the entire Iiayikohnian government.”

“What for? I’ve already taken care of the problem,” Korbin replied. “Say, that man at your side… Is it just me, or does he look familiar?”

“You’re imagining things,” Pariton said.

“Hold on a second,” Korbin said. “I heard there was a mission you took a while back, Johan Kuu. Find a stray True Thekohnian, was it?”

“You’re not wrong,” Johan answered.

Korbin gave an enthusiastic laugh. “Oh, if word of this managed to reach that general, this’d be a hell of a scandal,” he said. “Imagine that a spy would find sympathy for some lowly scum and associate with him, no less! That is, unless I manage to take care of you both…”

He pushed Rain aside and withdrew his sword. Korbin then charged at both Johan and Pariton, who stood frozen in their tracks. Before Korbin could land any attack, Sorin rushed to Johan and Pariton’s defenses. Sorin took out his sword swiftly and blocked the oncoming attack.

“That is enough,” Sorin said.

“Even you’d spare the life of a killer, Sorin?” Korbin asked. “Fine. I would rather have a little chase with Johan before I get him, anyway.”

“You’re going to have trouble with that,” Johan said.

“All the more fun for me,” Korbin replied. “Fuck it, let’s get out here, guys. Get Lance, too!”

Erik nodded. “Understood.”

Korbin and Erik then headed out to the back of the church, while Bradley stayed behind. He looked over at Sroin, who now had put his blade away.

“Consider yourself lucky,” Bradley said. “You’re on Korb’s good side right now, Sorin, which is why he decided to spare your friend there.”

With that, Bradley ran off to join the other two. Sorin then turned to Johan and Pariton, who were busy helping Ayanna with Silvia’s corpse.

“How did you know we were here?” Sorin asked.

“I can explain that later, buddy,” Johan replied. “We need to take care of things here right now.”


To be continued…


Previous | Next Part

Sundown – Chapter 20 (Part 2)

[11th of September, 2740 AD; Tranquil Cardinal Inn, Helm, Ahnlikohn]


Johan walked into the hotel, with Pariton close behind him. The two had arrived in Helm only a few minutes ago and were looking for answers as to what had happened. Given from the activity, Johan guessed that there was some sort of attack on the town, but wanted to find answers. As he tried, he ended up coming across Gale Kunigunde in the hotel.

“Ah, Gale, you’re here,” Johan said.

“Hello Johan,” Gale said. “How did you get in?”

“What do you mean?”

“I thought the gates were on lockdown,” Gale replied. She looked past Johan and to Pariton. “Is it just me or does that guy look familiar?”

“It must be just you,” Johan replied. “Right, Pekka?”

Pariton crossed his arms. “You must be imagining things, miss.”

“Maybe I am,” Gale said. “Anyway, I was wondering if you saw Sorin out there somewhere, Johan.”

“Funny enough, I was going to ask you that,” Johan replied. “There was something I’ve been meaning to talk to him about.”

“What is it?” Gale asked.

Johan sighed. “I’m afraid I can’t share it with you,” he said. “It’s… kind of personal. I hope you understand.”

“No, I get it,” she replied. “Are you going to go now?”

“Well, I’m not going to run into him if I just do nothing,” Johan said. “He’d be back here, but I’m working with limited time.”

“It’s best if we take the back routes,” Pariton said. “We’re less likely to run into the Ahnlikohn military that way.”

Johan nodded. “Agreed,” he said. “Well, Gale, it’s nice to run into you again. I hope we can meet again under different circumstances, though.”

“Okay, well, I hope we can, too,” she replied.

“Next time, let me treat you guys,” Johan said. “At least I can make it up to you that way.”

“As long as you don’t get carried away, we’ll definitely do it,” Gale said. “Maybe he’d like to come along, too?”

“I’ll have to decline,” Pariton answered.

“He’s not really that much of a social person,” Johan said. “But for you, I will try my best to treat you and Sorin the next chance I get.”

He turned to leave the hotel with Pariton, but stopped in his tracks. Johan slapped his hand on his forehead as he laughed to himself.

“Ah, where are my manners?” Johan asked. “I haven’t even said goodbye to you, nor have I given you a hug. Let’s change that, shall we?”

He approached Gale with open arms, to which she responded by receiving his embrace. As he patted her on the back, Pariton opened the front door.

“If I don’t see Sorin, just tell him I said hello,” Johan said.

“I will let him know you said that,” she said. “I’ll see you later.”

“Same to you, Gale,” he said.

And with that, Johan separated himself from Gale and followed Pariton out of the hotel. Out on the street, Pariton looked around for a route to the other side of the city. There, he turned back to Johan and pointed out an entrance.

“Right there, Mr. Johan,” Pariton said.

“I really hate having to leave her behind, but I have a feeling that we’re needed elsewhere,” Johan said. “Well? Let’s not waste any more time here.”

“Anything you say,” Pariton replied. “Now, after you.”

Johan chuckled. “If you insist.”

They hurried into the alleyway and towards the back route that Johan knew would lead them into the plaza. Everything was going accordingly to his plan, but he still had to be there before things could get carried away. First, there was a certain someone he had to deal with, and Johan was not about to let her get away. Second, he had to know if Sorin was safe. Because of those things, Johan knew that he had no time to waste.


Upon making their way to the plaza, Johan and Pariton saw Jelka being taken away by a couple of Ahnlikohnian officers. Despite her animosity towards him, Johan still needed Jelka’s help and he was not about to let her get away.

“We shouldn’t let them arrest her,” Johan said.

“She kidnapped you,” Pariton replied. “Do you still want to save her?”

“You trust me, don’t you Pekka?” Johan asked.

Pariton breathed a sigh of relief. “For some reason, when you say it like that, I do trust you,” he said. “I’ll take care of them for you.”

“Thank you.”

Pariton hurried forward to the officers and engaged them. As they tried to reach for their weapons, Pariton disarmed them in swift fashion. With their guns knocked to the ground, the officers tried to pick them up but Pariton quickly kicked one of the officers in the head, knocking him out. The other officer tried to attack, to which Pariton responded by delivering a blow to the back of his head. Jelka stood back as Pariton took both men out.

“You saved me?” Jelka asked.

Johan shrugged as he walked up to Jelka. “It must be a shock to you, right?”

“Don’t think that because you saved me that I see you any differently,” Jelka replied. “If I still had my sword, I would cut you down in an instant!”

“Well, I guess I’m lucky you don’t have a sword,” Johan said. “Though, those guns on the ground should be a good substitute, wouldn’t they?”

Jelka looked to the ground but found that Pariton had already picked them up. “You… are you trying to mock me, Ameci!?”

“Like a shadow, Pekka’s rather quick,” Johan replied. “I would suggest you run right now, because once word gets out, they will be hot on your tracks.”

“You don’t need to tell me that,” Jelka said. “Just tell me why you decided to help me.”

“Well, consider our helping hand to be a sympathetic one,” Johan said. “I’m not just an average soldier.”

“Your actions have proved that you’re indeed anything but average,” Jelka replied. “What could you possibly sympathize with me about? You’re an Ameci; you don’t have much to complain about!”

“How I wish we could just sit down and talk,” Johan said, “Because I’d really like to just tell you why you’re wrong. Oh well, guess I’ll just have to do it another time.”

“What? No, I refuse that answer!” Jelka exclaimed. “I deny that answer! You will tell me now, or so help me god, I will crush you!”

“I won’t allow that to happen,” Pariton said.

“Fine, then just tell me what you want,” Jelka said.

“I don’t want anything from you,” Johan answered. “Well, maybe one thing. I want you to leave here now.”

“Why are you doing this, anyway?” Jelka asked. “I’m sure if the Ameci army found out, they’d punish you.”

“That’s why I’m always planning ahead,” Johan said. “Besides, no one is ever going to know that this happened. You want to tell them yourself? Go ahead; they’ll just capture you on the spot.”

Jelka scowled. “It must be nice,” she said. “Consider yourself lucky, Ameci.”

Jelka then sprinted as fast as she could, leaving Johan and Pariton to themselves. With that matter taken care of, Johan turned to Pariton.

“Well, we’ve got one more thing to do here,” Johan said.

“Where do you think he is?” Pariton asked.

“A good question,” Johan replied. “I wonder if he’s crossed paths with our other friend.”

“Are you speaking of the bird?”

“That I am,” Johan said. “If we’re going to find them, perhaps it’s best we scour the whole of this place.”

“Let us do just that, then,” Pariton replied.




[11th of September, 2740 AD; Old Church Steps, Helm, Ahnlikohn]


Outside the old church, Sorin and the others found Korbin sitting on the front step twirling his gun. Bradley waved over to Korbin, who noticed as he put his gun away and stood up.

“Ah, so you’ve finally come,” Korbin said. “Gotta admit, I was getting bored just waiting here.”

“Korbin? What are you doing here?” Sorin asked.

Korbin clapped his hands together. “And there’s the man I’ve been waiting for! How’s it going, Sorin Wilk?”

“Your ‘friend’ here told us you have someone we’ve been looking for,” Sorin said. “Can you just turn her over to us?”

“Is that how you want to settle this?” Korbin asked. “I think I’ve been counting the blades of grass here to pass the time. You really just want to do the so-called ‘diplomatic’ thing instead of proving your worth?”

“It’s a stupid idea,” Sorin replied. “There’s nothing to gain for either us if we fight each other.”

Korbin’s eyebrow twitched. “Nothing to gain? Hey, Bradley, what the hell did you bring him for if he doesn’t want to fight me?”

“I had no idea,” Bradley replied.

“No idea my ass!” Korbin said. “I’ve already had to beat some sense into Lance earlier, so don’t make me have to bloody my knuckle once more!”

“Korbin, is it?” Ayanna asked. “I’m the lieutenant general of the Iiayikohnian military. It’s imperative for us that this escaped convict return to us immediately, so if you have her, I request that you bring her out.”

“You think that because you’re high rank, you can boss me around?” Korbin asked. “I think not! How about you just back off and let Sorin and I settle this like men?”

“I see that reason fails you,” Ayanna said. “If General Fercewend got word of this…”

“That bald bastard ain’t worth shit!” Korbin exclaimed. “Sure, I serve Ameci fine and well, but above all else I’m a Blood Raven! I live for the thrill of the battle and nothing else!”

“You’re really nothing more than a thug in a uniform, aren’t you?” Gavin asked. “That badge on your coat means nothing to you?”

“Nope, sorry,” Korbin replied. “Although I don’t take too kindly to being called a mere ‘thug,’ former junior lieutenant Gavin Power. I heard you ran away because you wanted to stay with your traitorous brother. That must be him right beside you, if I had to guess.”

“You’re certainly not a slouch with names,” Law said. “I take you’re not going to give us back our escapee until Sorin fights you, am I right?”

Korbin laughed. “Ding! Ding! Ding! You should get a reward! I know… How about I kick your ass?”

“In terms of rewards, that’s a really shitty one,” Law replied. “Do you only think about ways to hurt people?”

“Isn’t that how we’ve always settled things?” Korbin asked. “We live, fight, bleed, and die every day. What’s another fight? A fight that doesn’t even have anything to gain, so says Sorin Wilk?”

“Can we be certain you have the woman in question?” Rain asked.

Korbin tilted his head. “Excuse me?”

“If she’s with you, then we would know that you aren’t lying to us,” Rain answered. “That way, Sorin might be able to fulfill your request.”

“Oh, I see,” Korbin said. “Perhaps I can prove to you that I’m not just fucking around with all of you. Bradley, go and get Erik!”

“Sure thing,” Bradley replied.

He walked past Korbin and into the church. As everyone waited, Sorin took a deep breath as he anticipated what would happen next. What waited beyond those doors? There was no time to think about that as the doors creaked open and Erik walked out with Silvia in tow.

“Silvia! Are you alright?” Ayanna asked.

“Oh don’t bother answering that,” Erik said as he placed his hand on Silvia’s mouth. “Perhaps Sorin needs a little more motivation. Here!”

With his free hand, Erik took out a sheathed sword and tossed it over to Korbin. Korbin caught it and instantly took the blade out, throwing the sheath to the side.

“Well, Sorin?” Korbin asked. “I got this custom made thanks to my dad! Maybe you’ve heard of him?”

“I don’t think I have,” Sorin replied.

“I guess it doesn’t matter,” Korbin said. “It’s not like you’ll have any chance of meeting him.”

“So are you going to let Silvia go or not?” Sorin asked. “I’d rather not waste any more time with you.”

“Aw man, I was just trying to be friendly,” Korbin replied. “I set up this duel and everything, but all you want is to spurn my desires. All I wanted was a duel against the son of Kirk Wilk. Oh well.”

Korbin looked over at Erik and tilted his head upwards.

“Got it, Korbin,” Erik said.

Erik pulled out a gun from his holster at pointed it at Silvia’s head. Sorin gritted his teeth as Ayanna stepped forward.

“What the hell are you doing!?” Ayanna asked.

“Isn’t it obvious?” Korbin asked. “Sorin doesn’t want to fight me. What else can I do but just put this poor woman out of her misery?”

“Besides, it’s not like she’s important to any of you,” Erik said.

“Not important? You’re dead wrong,” Ayanna replied. “She might be just a simple convict to you, but she happens to be my friend. A friend who made a terrible mistake, but a friend all the same.”

Korbin grinned. “Am I really hearing this? A lieutenant general expressing feelings for a terrorist? I feel like I have to laugh at how fucking stupid that sounds!”

He began to laugh as both Bradley and Erik joined him. As he did, Sorin quickly drew his sword and pointed it at Korbin.

“You want a fight?” Sorin asked. “I’ll give you a fight.”

“Sorin, are you sure of this?” Rain asked.

“I can’t really say I care for doing this, but he leaves me little choice,” Sorin replied. “Korbin! I’ll give you your ‘fight’ so long as you let Silvia go!”

Korbin stopped laughing. “That sounds lovely,” he said. “Oh, before we fight, I should let you know that I’m not just some amatuer. I’m as skilled with a sword as I am a gun.”

“Doesn’t matter to me,” Sorin said. “The rest of you… I want you to back up right now!”

“Wait, like right now?” Law asked.

“You heard him,” Gavin said.

“Please, Sorin, just don’t do anything reckless,” Ayanna said. “Just make sure that Silvia returns to us safe.”

“I’ll make sure that that happens,” Sorin replied.

“Kick his butt, Sorin,” Mina said, “Because I really don’t like how any of these guys are acting at all!”

“I know that you can do this,” Rain said.

“Thank you, guys,” Sorin said.

The others then just backed themselves up until they were behind the fence of the church. Sorin then faced Korbin, who smiled from side to side.

“Is that it, then?” Korbin asked. “You’ve been making me wait for quite a while, you know, but that doesn’t matter much to me now. Now things are getting exciting!”

Korbin cackled again, his laughter joined by Bradley and Erik once more. Then, out of nowhere, Korbin started to imitate the caw of a raven. The sheer, shrill sound caught Sorin off guard, but his grip on his sword remained strong as the other two of Korbin’s crew joined in the bird call. As Korbin stopped, he laughed again as he looked to Sorin.

“Bring your best to me, Sorin Wilk,” Korbin said. “I assure you that you’ll never beat me, the leader of the Blood Ravens!”


To be continued…


Previous | Next Chapter

Sundown – Chapter 18 (Part 2)

[11th of September, 2740 AD; on the road to Helm, Ahnlikohn]


Korbin rapped his fingers on the dashboard of the truck while Bradley drove the Blood Ravens to Helm. In the back of the truck, Erik and Lance kept a close eye on Silvia, who still could not move as she remained tied up and gagged. With little to interfere, Korbin could see the edge of town begin to appear in the distance.

“You have any plans once we’re in?” Bradley asked.

“Nah, just want to get this convict before they get too far from me,” Korbin replied. “Plus, we’ve got a catch of our own to use! Not a bad situation we’re in right now, don’t you think?”

“There’s no way I’m going to doubt that brilliant mind of yours,” Bradley said. “I’m just glad you got me as your second-in-command, Korb.”

“Don’t get too full of yourself,” Korbin said. “Our plan hasn’t come completely to fruition yet. We’ve got a little bit more to go until everything falls our way!”

Bradley chuckled. “You’re very humble.”

“That’s just the kind of person I really am,” Korbin said, “Humble with a brilliant mind. Even my father would say the same thing, and he’s most brilliant of all Ameci!”

“Your father and mine both,” Bradley said. “Say, how do you think they’re handling our little hostage back there?”

“Hopefully they’ve taken a few cues from me,” Korbin replied. “We’ve only got so little time before they send someone to pick her up, so they ought to just make it as fun as they possibly can!”

“Certainly can’t let these strays just roam around,” Bradley said. “Maybe we should just do the deed already and avoid the trouble.”

“You just don’t get it, do you?” Korbin asked. “It’s not whether or not she lives or dies, it’s the thrill of not knowing! Am I going to pull my gun or my knife?”

“What do you mean?”

“Look at Lance,” Korbin said. “I could kill him right now if I felt like it, but I won’t. And do you want to know why?”


“Well, I don’t really know,” he answered. “Fuck, maybe I should just kill him before he gets the chance to screw up. Just kidding!”

He erupted into laughter while Bradley continued to drive. Helm was still off in the distance, so the time felt like it did not move. Yet, Korbin was sure that he was going to get his wish. He had the certainty that Helm would bring him that excitement that he desired.




[11th of September, 2740 AD; Open Area Shopping District, Helm, Ahnlikohn]


It was a good day outside as Sorin checked out the shopping district with the others. He held Gale’s hand as the two looked inside one of the local antique shops while Rain and Mina had set off for the candy shop next door. Noa, meanwhile, had decided to just tag along with Sorin and Gale, though he did keep some distance from them as he looked around. Sorin watched as Noa eyed a silver-framed wooden box on the shelf and decided to pay him some attention.

“Hey, that box you’re looking at… What about it?” Sorin asked.

“Nothing!” Noa replied. “It’s nothing at all!”

“I was just curious,” Sorin said. “Not a real reason to be all defensive about it. Wait, what’s this?”

He reached for the box and picked it up. On the bottom of the box was an engraving, though due to its age it was hard to make out the name. Noa, in a rush, snatched the box out of Sorin’s hand and placed it back on the shelf.

“It’s just… my father had a similar box in his room,” Noa said. “It was always locked and he told me and my sister never to open it.”

“I had no idea,” Sorin said.

Noa shook his head. “Sorry, it’s still so hard to talk about them,” he replied. “I wasn’t expecting to have my past come back to me again. Not after I told you all my story.”

“Well, I understand now.”

“That’s good,” Noa said. “Say, mind if I ask you something?”

“Go ahead.”

“About Gale… how did you two meet?”

“My father introduced her to me,” Sorin answered. “We travelled together for a while and one thing led to another and now we’re as you see us.”

“Does that mean you’ve, er… you’ve seen each other in the nude?” Noa asked. “Like up close and all that stuff?”

“That’s an extremely personal question!” Sorin said.

“Damn it, I’m so sorry!” Noa exclaimed. “My idiot mind just went off in a perverted direction! Damn it, damn it, damn it!”

“You really need to have some restraint on what you say,” Sorin said.


“Why do you ask about Gale and I anyway?” Sorin asked.

“It’s just that I’ve never, you know, had much of an interaction with the opposite sex,” Noa replied. “I just sort of clam up and feel a massive amount of unease in my stomach. How do you do it?”

“Do it? It’s not that hard, Noa,” Sorin said. “Just try not to overthink things too much. I’m sure you’ll be okay if you do that.”

“That sounds so difficult, though,” Noa said. “I mean, if I were to go up and try to talk to Gale, I would be worried about trying to offend her and looking like an ass because of it.”

Sorin sighed. “Let’s go.”

He dragged Noa over to the part of the shop where Gale stood. She was looking at a pile of used parts and mechanisms as Sorin led Noa to her.

Gale turned around. “Oh, hey.”

Sorin smiled. “Hi,” he said. “Noa wanted to talk to you about something.”

“He does?” Gale asked.

Noa gasped. “I… I do?”

Sorin leaned in and whispered into Noa’s ear. “Just say something,” he said, “But not exactly whatever’s on your mind.”

“But how?” Noa asked.

“I just told you,” Sorin said.

“Okay,” Noa said.

“What do you want to say to me?” Gale asked.

“Well, you see, it’s about your glasses,” Noa said. “They’re… they’re really nice, aren’t they?”

“I need them to see,” she said.

“Of… of course!” Noa replied as he laughed nervously.

“Say, Noa, what were you talking about with me earlier?” Sorin asked. “I think you said something about wanting to know about Gale’s blueprints?”

“Did you tell him that?” Gale asked Sorin.

“I only mentioned it briefly,” Sorin replied. “He really found it interesting and wanted to talk with you about them.”

“Oh, well, I guess I could share a little bit with him,” she said.

As Gale explained her blueprints and ideas with Noa, Sorin wondered how Mina and Rain were doing next door. The two women looked around, with Mina eyeing the various candies that were on display while Rain spoke with the owner of the shop.

“These candies are so colorful!” Mina exclaimed. “Rain, look!”

“Hold on,” Rain said. “So you’re telling me that this is a new type of candy?”

The older owner laughed. “Well, not exactly,” he said. “It’s just a little twist on our trademark chocolate bars. Here, I can provide you a small sample, Your Highness.”

“No, it’s okay,” Rain said. “I was just going to tell my sister about this place later…”

She trailed off as the owner turned to the counter and reached for the wrapped piece of chocolate. The owner then held his hand out, candy in hand, as Rain accepted it. Though it was a free sample, Rain did not possess an affinity for sweets whatsoever. An idea then crossed Rain’s mind as she turned her focus over towards Mina and hurried over to her.

“Here, try this,” Rain said as she handed the candy over to Mina. “It’s supposed to be a twist on this shop’s trademark chocolate!”

“Really?” Mina asked. “Okay then!”

She proceeded to pop the small piece of chocolate into her mouth and eat it. Rain could only smile as she watched Mina’s expression make a change from skepticism to pure enjoyment of what she was eating. To see her friend enjoy such a thing really did bring Rain happiness as Mina finished eating.

“That was really good!” Mina said. “You sure you didn’t want it?”

“No, it’s fine,” Rain replied. “I just thought you would like it.”

“I did,” Mina said, “But how did you know I would like it?”

“Because I had a feeling.”

Mina grinned. “Are you a mind reader? Ooh, maybe you should give Sorin something you’d think he would want!”

“No, that’s all I had,” Rain said, “And besides, it’s only natural to share things with people you really like, right?”

“I guess so!”

Rain sighed. “Though I suppose we’re going to have to keep moving,” she said. “If only we had more time to ourselves, then maybe I’d get the chance.”

“Did you say something?” Mina asked.

“I’m just thinking out loud,” Rain answered. “Let’s just go see what the others are doing.”

“That’s good with me,” Mina said as they began to walk. “Say, Rain, can I ask you something?”

“You can ask me anything,” she said, “I don’t mind answering your questions at all.”

“Do you have anyone you love? Like there’s someone you just can’t stop thinking about?”

“I, well… I guess you could say so,” Rain said.

“So do you get to see them often?” Mina asked.

“I’ve seen them many times already,” she replied. “I think you’d really like them if you met them.”

“Oh wow, then they must be really strong or something!” Mina exclaimed. “I really hope that you’re right!”

“Well, we’re here,” Rain said as they set foot into the antique shop. “Sorin, Gale! We’re back!”

Sorin and Gale were busy looking at an old radio as both Rain and Mina approached them. Noa was standing in the left-most corner of the shop as he gripped the bag on his back closer to himself.

“Hey Rain, Mina,” Sorin said. “We’re just taking one last look around.”

“I see that,” Rain said. “Did Noa do something? Why is he by himself?”

“He’s just off in his own world right now,” Gale said. “I’m sorry, I didn’t want that to come off as mean, but he’s just kind of overwhelming right now.”

“Surely he hasn’t been getting too up close, has he?” Rain asked.

“He’s just too nervous,” Sorin said. “Better to just give him some space while he tries to recover.”

“So I shouldn’t try to surprise him with a grapple from behind?” Mina asked. “Maybe he just needs a jolt to his system!”

“That sounds like the last thing he needs now,” Gale replied.

At that moment, a loud explosion rang out from the distance. Everyone became silent as screams soon followed, with another explosion coming after. Sorin looked around as he decided what to do next.

“We need to get out of here,” Sorin said. “Noa, do you hear me?”

He could not find Noa, however, as he was nowhere to be found within the antique shop.

“I’m concerned that he’s going to end up in danger,” Rain said. “We have to find him!”

“Damn it,” Sorin said. “Okay, then our next course of action is to find Noa and get of here. Mina, I want you to take of Gale.”

“Sorin, are you sure about this?” Gale asked.

“That explosion cannot mean anything good,” he replied. “Both Rain and I are armed, while Mina is strong enough to guard you on the way to the hotel.”

“Are you sure the hotel is safe enough?” Rain asked. “Whoever’s attacking might go there next.”

“It’s not our shelter, it’s our rendezvous,” Sorin said. “Once we find Noa, we’ll meet back you two over there.”

“I understand,” Mina said. “If I see any villains try to attack, I’ll pummel them as hard as I can!”

“Just don’t get reckless,” Rain said.

“I’ll see you again, Gale,” Sorin said. “I love you.”

“I love you too,” Gale replied. “Please don’t get hurt… either of you.”

“We’ll be okay,” Rain said. “Shall we, Sorin?”

Sorin nodded. “We’ll see you later!”

“Alright then!” Mina replied.

Mina took Gale along with her. With the group split, Sorin and Rain hurried to the middle of the shopping district as they attempted to find Noa. He could not have gotten too far from the shop, Sorin thought to himself. Whatever unknown attackers awaited them had to dealt with somehow, but Sorin had his suspicions about who caused the explosions and he had a bad feeling that he might be right.

To be continued…


Previous | Next Chapter

Sundown – Chapter 16 (Part 1)

[10th of September, 2740 AD; Ayanna Ansa’s house, Rezar, Iiayikohn – Tera Disctrict]


Ayanna opened the front door to her house and invited General Reiss inside. He took a seat over in the living room as Ayanna sat down in the chair across from him.

“Do you want anything to drink, sir?” Ayanna asked.

“You don’t need to get me anything, Ansa,” Reiss replied. “I only just came because I’ve received some important news.”

“About that,” Ayanna said, “I’ve gotten some news of my own to share as well. Actually, less news and more of a rumor that I’ve received.”

“Whatever it is, please tell me,” Reiss said. “If it proves to be helpful to our cause, then by all means say what it is you need to say.”

“Well, it’s what I’ve picked up from Lawrence Power,” she replied. Ayanna went into detail about what Law had discovered in his conversation with Prince Amile Ahnle and how the assassin had arrived from out of the country. “He says he plans to meet with the prince tomorrow at the Rieder Park.”

“And he feels that this prince will have valuable insight into this assassin?”

Ayanna nodded. “What he said to me was, and I quote: ‘Believe me when I say that the prince’s insight will be very noteworthy.’ At least that was what he said amidst all his bragging.”

“So he says,” Reiss replied. “I feel like there might be some use in sending some officers to the park.”

“I would consider it,” Ayanna said. “I’m not in any position to do anything, so it’s all up to you, sir.”

“Tell you what, Ansa,” Reiss said, “If he calls back soon, don’t hesitate to ask him for more details. That guy seems to rival our best and brightest flatfoots and I don’t wish for him to gain all of the glory so easily.”

“I’ll let him know you said you that, sir,” she said. “Perhaps that will motivate him even further, or perhaps it will just make him more vague about what he is going to do with Prince Ahnle.”

“That’s a bridge we’ll have to cross when we get to it, I suppose.”

“Indeed,” Ayanna said. “So what is it that you wish to share with me, sir?”

“Yes, about that,” Reiss said. “I received a note upon returning to my office. Well, maybe you’d like to look at it for yourself, Ansa.”

He reached into his pocket and pulled out a folded piece of paper. Ayanna received it from him and unfolded it. As she began to read the note, her expression changed, her eyes closing in on each word as she had a frown on her face. Specifically, the note stated that whoever wrote it knew the whereabouts of Silvia Roeik and that they wouldn’t give her location up so easily. That is, unless the Iiayikohnian government were willing to cooperate.

“This isn’t a note, sir,” Ayanna said. “This reads more like a blackmail.”

“It’s a complicated matter, I’ll say,” Reiss replied. “She was last seen with the prime minister and after that… nobody knows where she ran off to.”

“She ran off?” Ayanna asked. “Perhaps it’s related to the assassination?”

“I doubt that she would have the ability to pull off the assassination.”

“That wasn’t what I was insinuating,” Ayanna said. “Maybe she knows who killed Alan and… No, I don’t want to believe it…”

“If she got killed, then why send the note?” Reiss asked. “Why go through all of this trouble to pass off this note if she is dead?”

“Y-You’re right,” Ayanna said. “Do you know where this note was sent from?”

“Unfortunately, there wasn’t a return sender on the envelope,” he answered. “Maybe you can relay this to Mr. Power and see what he thinks?”

“You want him to do that for you?” Ayanna asked. “Didn’t you just say you weren’t about let him have all of the glory to himself?”

“When it comes to bagging a criminal, it is a different story,” Reiss said, “However, if this note is true, then we cannot allow for this to happen. Especially not with Dezine in charge.”

“That is true,” she said. “I will inform him the next chance I get.”

“We truly can’t afford to sleep, can we?” Reiss asked. “Not only is the integrity of our country at stake, but our futures, too.”

“I’ll keep that in mind.”

“Glad to hear that, Ansa,” Reiss said. “I should get going now. My wife is probably beginning to wonder what I’m doing out and about at this hour.”

“Then we will meet again later,” Ayanna replied. “You have my reassurance that we will find the one responsible for this.”

“I look forward to hearing the result.”

With that, Reiss got up from the chair and thanked Ayanna. She led him out of the house and said her goodbye to him. There was a comforting feeling that there would be an answer to who killed Alan, but in the back of Ayanna’s mind, one question remained.

“Where could you have gone, Silvia?”




[10th of September, 2740 AD; an abandoned house outside Rezar, Iiayikohn]


A dim light was all that lit up the empty room as Korbin entered. Waiting for him were his three fellow soldiers, who were all part of his independant troop called the Blood Ravens. There was to be a brief meeting between the four as Korbin took out his gun and unloaded it.

“Ah, you’ve made it back, Korbin. How’s it going?” Lance Keld, the youngest of the troop with red hair, asked.

Korbin laughed. “You even need to ask?”

“Oh, right, gotta ask Erik about that,” Lance said. “Should I yell for him?”

“You leave that to me,” Korbin replied.

“Right, you do that. I’ll wait here, just in case.”

As Lance headed to look out through the window, Korbin headed upstairs where the other two members of the group hung out. On the left side was Erik Ellis, the second youngest with black hair and a small scar by his right eye. To Korbin’s right stood Crawford Bradley, the second oldest and the tallest one with brown hair and a beard. They both stood at the entrance to a closed room.

“Look who decided to show up,” Bradley said. “That note really proved to be useful, didn’t it?”

“A bounty’s a bounty,” Erik said. “I reckon that we can catch a nice reward for our capture.”

“Gotta hand it to that spy,” Korbin replied. “He might be a meddler, but he did leave me with a very important piece of information. Glad you two were able to track down the target.”

“About that,” Bradley said. “She’s been saying that she had nothing to do with the assassination of the prime minister.”

“Yeah, going on with all of that ‘I didn’t do it’ and crap,” Erik added.

“But you’re sure that you’ve got the right person?” Korbin asked. “Because if not, then that spy’s gonna pay me one way or another.”

“The description fit perfectly,” Bradley replied. “Long red hair and wearing Iiayikohnian prison garb. If that’s not her, then I must be blind.”

Korbin grabbed the doorknob. “I’ll see for myself whether that’s true or not,” he said. “Shouldn’t take too long.”

Pushing the door open, he walked into the dark room and flipped the light switch. In the now illuminated closet sat one Silvia Roeik, tied up and gagged as Korbin walked up to her and knelt right in front of her.

“Hi, how are you?” Korbin asked.

There was no response from Silvia, save for her wide-eyed look that did not waver for even a moment. Her stare kept on Korbin, who broke into a smile.

“That look of fear on your eyes is comforting,” he said. “Those boys of mine got it right, looks like. You really did kill the prime minister, didn’t you?”

She shook her head.

“Even when you can’t talk, you’ve still got some nerve,” Korbin replied. “They said that there was one person that was last seen with the old man himself. One single, lost woman with little to lose.”

He stood up and turned around. Just then, Korbin pulled out his gun and pointed it at Silvia, who could only reply with muffled screams.

“Fear is the last thing a person feels before they die, I bet,” he said. “Ah, but I’m not going to kill you… yet. Yet I still need your worthless life for something much more. You ought to thank me for sparing your life.”

He put his gun away and knelt down again.

“Perhaps you’d like to explain yourself? Or rather, I’ve considered what your response would be,” Korbin said as he leaned closer towards Silvia. “And I already don’t give a shit about it. Let’s say you’re right about this; still doesn’t change the fact that you’re a True Thekohnian.”

He burst into laughter and stood up. Korbin placed his arm on the wall until he stopped and regained his composure.

“That’s right, you’re no better than a stray dog roaming the streets,” he said. “The kind of dogs that I would put out of their misery. If there wasn’t a bounty on your head, I would’ve just killed you by now.”

Silvia continued to gaze at Korbin, her heart pounding as he walked up to her again. This time, he slammed his foot right next to her, causing her to jump.

“It’s not as easy to snap a human’s neck compared to a dog’s, but I’d do it all the same,” he continued. “Then again, what’s a more satisfying way to kill a person than to put a bullet in their head? I guess if I had a knife with right now, I could slash your throat and be done with it.”

“Hey, so is she the assassin or not?” Erik asked.

“Maybe she is, maybe she isn’t,” Korbin answered. “All I know is that this is really fun. I’m not bored at all!”

He looked at Silvia again and placed his hands upon her face.

“I’ve got to go now,” he said, “But if you try to escape… I will hunt you down and fucking kill you myself!”

Korbin got up and left the closet, leaving Erik to turn off the light and close the door. He turned back over to Bradley, who was scratching his head.

“As much fun as that was, I’ve got to share with you something I found out,” Bradley said. “I heard that there was an escaped convict heading towards Ahnlikohn.”

Korbin tilted his head. “An escaped convict?”

“Said he was set to be executed the day he broke out,” Erik said. “Another one of those True Thekohnians that got arrested during that battle.”

“Why haven’t I heard about this?” Korbin asked. “Why the fuck haven’t I heard this!? I bet that Johan Kuu bastard knew and is laughing his ass off as he goes to catch my prey!”

“What do you want to do?” Bradley asked.

Korbin rubbed his chin as his lips formed to a smile. “I am a goddamn genius,” he said. “Bradley, I’m gonna need you to secure a truck. We’ve got a drive to make tomorrow morning.”

“Got it,” Bradley said.

“What are we gonna do about her?” Erik asked. “I don’t think we should just leave her alone.”

“That’s the fun part!” Korbin replied. “Gotta find a way to hold this over the Iiayikohnians’ heads, right? What better way than to drive up the bounty?”

“You wanna hold her over in another country?” Bradley asked.

“Of course, of course,” Korbin said. “Maybe we’ll send them another letter. Ooh, we can even send a little package along with it! Erik, you got a knife on you? Maybe a finger or two would send a good message, if not the whole hand!”

Korbin laughed to himself as Erik turned to Bradley.

“Unfortunately, I’ve got no such thing,” Erick said.

“That’s fine,” Bradley replied. “I think Korb’s got a good idea going on, though, and I don’t want to waste his greatness.”

“Ah, screw it,” Korbin said. “I’m just getting anxious thinking about this. I want to do it now! Tell Lance that we’re heading off right now!”

“Sure we can get a truck this time of night?” Bradley asked.

“Hey, that’s not my job to worry about,” Korbin replied. “Just bolt over to the embassy and get a truck. Any kind, really!”

Bradley hurried down the stairs as Korbin thought about the next action that he had to take.


To be continued…


Previous | Next Part

Sundown – Chapter 8 (Part 2)

For a trip that had been made on short notice, Brook Rio Thedam gathered together a small travelling bag full of clothes for his voyage to Iiayikohn. When he had received the phone call from his sister yesterday, Brook was just getting back from Jiaikohn and setting his trophy in the main hall of Thedam Castle. At first Brook was reluctant, but was convinced by Rain after she said she needed his help. Seeing as she had been so nice, he thought, how could Brook refuse?

He sat by the window and read through a book detailing the long history of the Thekohnian Region. History had been a favorite subject of Brook’s, going from the Great Thekohnian Wars that happened over a hundred years ago all the way to the current events. Perhaps it was a chance to even meet with the prime minister himself, Brook thought.

“Attention, this is your conductor speaking,” the voice spoke over the speakers. “We’re arriving in Rezar right now. Please be sure to gather all your belongings and exit to the left once we have stopped.”

“Looks like I’ll have to resume this later,” Brook said as he closed his book.

With the train in a stationary position, Brook stood up to pick up his bag and step off. However, he was distracted by a small commotion on the other side as a young boy called out to a man that had begun to run out of the train with a large case in his arms.

“Somebody help!” The boy’s father pointed to the burly man rushing into the station. Brook sighed as he stepped off of the train and followed after the man. Though the crowd proved to be quite abundant, Brook was able to catch up with the man and tap him on the shoulder.

“Excuse me,” Brook said.

The man frowned. “What do ya want?”

“That case isn’t yours, is it?”

The man dropped the case to the ground as he shoved Brook away. “That’s none of your business, you son of a bitch!”

Brook clenched his fist. “I was going to have to settle this peacefully,” he said in a calm tone. “Guess that’s out of the question now.”

“I’m going to break your face, pretty boy!”

The man charged at Brook with his fist raised, but Brook was able to move to the side and grabbed his arm. With only a moment to react, Brook punched the man in the face and knocked him to the ground. A guard came running to the man on the ground as Brook picked up the large case.

“This is yours, isn’t it?” Brook asked as he handed the case back to the father. “A rather large instrument, I may guess?”

“Thank you, young man,” the father said. “Wait a minute, aren’t you Brook Rio Thedam?”

“It seems like you’re well informed,” Brook replied. “I just happened to passing by, so please pay me no mind.”

He walked away from the two as Ayanna came running up to him.

“Your Highness,” Ayanna said. She introduced herself to him as he shook her hand.

“Glad to meet you,” Brook said. “I’m sorry you had to see that.”

“They’re taking care of it now,” Ayanna replied. “Come now, we have somewhere to we need to be.”




Back at the prime minister’s office, Brook was escorted by Ayanna to the Questioning Chambers. Gavin, Law, and Gale sat at the other end of the table as Brook took a seat.

“I knew there was something bothering me about you,” Brook said to Gavin. “If only I had known who I was dealing with, then perhaps things would have gone differently back in Jiaikohn.”

Gavin scowled. “The hell is that supposed to mean?”

“Had I known that I had been facing off against the prominent junior lieutenant of the Ameci military, then perhaps I might have pulled a few strings to face you,” Brook replied.

There was a prolonged silence in the room as Brook grinned.

“But seeing as I’m not type to make humorous remarks, it’s to be expected that that one flies over your heads,” he said.

“So, as I was saying to you earlier,” Ayanna said, “It appears that Princess Rain is in need of your help and these three are a part of it.”

“Do tell,” Brook said.

Law smirked as he put his hands together. “Sadly, your dear sister isn’t here to tell you, so I suppose I’ll be the one to drop the news,” he said. “You see, she has been quite taken with myself. The other day, even, she asked to hold my hand as we walked to the local confectionery.”

Brook looked over to Ayanna. “Are you serious?”

“Law, you told me this was important,” Ayanna said.

“It was,” he replied, “Which is why what I said just now was a joke.”

Everybody else in the room groaned as Law chuckled.

“Hey, if our royal prince here can wisecrack with us, then why not I?”

“Let me take over, then, since you don’t seem at all interested in leading the conversation,” Gale said. “We’ve been doing some research with your sister yesterday and have come across some startling information.”

“Or rather, the lack of information,” Law said, “But that’s the far from the point we’re trying to make here.”

“Then what is it?” Brook asked.

“You can tell me, right, kid?” Law asked. “Your sister mentioned to us a potential assassination attempt on the king. Surely this is common knowledge to the entire royal family?”

Brook sighed. “It’s nothing surprising,” he said. “Anyone with enough power will be sought after. However, most of them just peter out or are apprehended before the damage can be done.”

“I’m going to be level with you, Brook,” Law said, “Rain is an exceptional lady and the second most beautiful woman that I know. Clearly, though, there’s something more than meets the eye on this whole thing, isn’t there?”

“If you’re asking me, then I do not know,” Brook answered.

“No turmoil or anything of that sort?” Law asked.

“Things at the castle have been quiet,” he said. “The queen has been completely busy with her duties in my father’s absence, however.”

“Absence?” Gavin asked. “Let me guess, Your Highness: the king’s gone missing, hasn’t he?”

“It seems like I’ve spoken too much,” Brook replied.

“I promise that we’ll keep it a secret,” Gale said. “You would agree, wouldn’t you?”

“If it’s important to whatever it is my sister is doing, then I suppose I have no choice,” Brook replied. “Late last month, my father became deeply ill. From what I’ve heard from the doctors, though, it is treatable.”

“Ah, finally, we hear something that’s intriguing,” Law said. “Nobody else knows about this, am I right?”

“Only within the family and our advisors,” Brook said.

“That’s a key word there, wouldn’t you agree, Gale?” Law asked.

Gale pushed up her glasses. “Why are you asking me?”

“I feel like there’s one question you’re not asking here, Law,” Ayanna said. “Namely, what do you want the prince to do about this?”

“This kid’s a valuable asset to us,” Law replied. “Whatever happens to the king, it will be considerably damaging to the royal family, regardless of who is next in line.”

“I think you’re being a bit over dramatic,” Ayanna replied.

Law leaned in. “How so?”

“You’re acting under the assumption that the king is already under attack,” she said. “That’s very dangerous conjecture.”

“Nothing’s escaping this room, right,” Law said. “Bro, come on, back me up here.”

“Don’t ask me,” Gavin replied. “You’re the one who brought it up.”

Law took a deep breath and sighed as he stood up. “It seems like I’m just going to have to do things myself, then,” he said as he walked around the table. “A man gets a taste of power, so what does he do? He sets out to satiate that hunger by doing whatever it takes to fill his gluttonous gut with that authority. If we’re dealing with such a person, then we will need to advance our investigation.”

“Even you should realize it’s not that simple,” Ayanna said.

Gavin shook his head and scoffed. “He’s not exactly the kind of person to see the problems introduced by his reasoning,” he said. “Still, though, it isn’t like he’s wrong, either.”

“I know there’s no chance in hell that the Iiayikohnian government will get involved,” Law said. “This is a purely internal matter for the kingdom, yet it also carries a lot of weight for everyone else. Even Ameci and Elemci would have to be affected.”

“Maybe Ameci would, but their neighbor hardly has anything to do with it,” Ayanna replied. “Anyway, it’s nothing that I feel is too concerning. Your Highness, are you quite satisfied?”

Brook eyed at Law. “I do not know what it is my sister said to you, but what I would like to say is that I want little to do with it,” he said. “I was on my way home in order to prepare for the summit in Glora when I was sidetracked.”

“I would like to apologize,” Ayanna said. “It seems like these three were mistaken by what the princess had said.”

“You really don’t need to apologize to me,” he said. “I packed well enough to go from here to Ahnlikohn right away.”

“Do you not want to see your sister before you leave?” Gale asked.

“Well, I was expecting to run into her, but it seems like she’s off on her own adventures,” he said. “I knew she had this streak in her, which was why she was so excited about this trip in first place. There will be another chance for us to reunite before the Thekohnian Festival begins, that much I am sure of.”

“Really? What’s the festival like?” Gale wondered.

“If it interests you that much, then feel free to come,” Brook said.

“The Thekohnian Festival is one of the most well known events throughout the region,” Ayanna added. “Lots of people come far and wide to see the dancers, singers, and everyone else that comes to celebrate this vast land.”

“So we’d be good to see it in person sometime, you think?” Law asked. “You really should just try and catch that break around then.”

“I’ll think about it,” Ayanna replied. “As for you, Your Highness, I’d be glad to escort you to the train station.”

“Honestly, it seems like a hassle,” Gavin said. “You could have just declined and not have to go through all that nonsense again.”

Brook stood up as he headed for the door. “It doesn’t bother me that much,” he said. “What does bother me, though, was what I heard from Rain.”

Gale got out of her chair. “Did she tell you something we haven’t heard?”

“Ask her for yourself,” Brook replied. “Other than that, I must take my leave right now.”

“I will see you guys later,” Ayanna said. “Please try not to get into any trouble, Law.”

Ayanna walked out of the room with Brook as Gavin stood up out of his chair. He turned to Gale, who was thinking to herself. Law, meanwhile, was trying not to laugh.

“Do you think we screwed up?” Gale asked.

“I doubt it,” Gavin replied. “The princess probably thought that there was little chance that her brother would be able to supply any information to us.”

“We have to speak to Rain,” Gale said. “I wonder where she and Mina are right now.”

“That is something I’d like to know, too,” Law said. “What possible things are they saying about me out of my earshot?”

“You know, calling Brook here was your idea,” Gale replied. “I was certain that you’d have some sort of brilliant deduction, but honestly it all felt like a waste of time.”

“Sometimes a broken clock is just that,” Gavin said.

“Come on, bro, I can’t just let that slide,” Law said, “And you, Gale… If it wasn’t for the fact that you’re cute, I’d be pretty mad at what you just said.”

“Sometimes it’s just best to know when to shut up,” Gavin said. “Besides, we all know you’re just going to forget this happened once we meet with Mina and Rain again.”

“Oh fine,” Law said.

“No, it’s not fine,” Gale responded. “I feel like we’ve let Rain down…”

Gavin sighed. “Let’s just get out here,” he said. “We’re just wasting more time if we don’t catch up with the other two soon.”

“I suppose we should,” Law said. “Best to get the girls before they go off on some wacky adventure without us. I mean, we’re already down Sorin, so it’ll be just you and me, bro!”

Gavin rolled his eyes. “Gale, you shouldn’t feel bad about this,” he said. “Just move past it and we’ll go.”




[9th of September, 2740 AD; Iiayine Prison, Rezar, Iiayikohn – Giga District]


“Are you enjoying this view?” Alan asked to Silvia.

Inside the courtyard, Alan took Silvia over to the large watchtower at the edge of the prison. There was a good view of most of the city and ocean as Silvia looked over everything.

“It was a long climb,” she replied. “Are you okay, Prime Minister?”

Alan chuckled. “If there’s any problem, I know my guards will look after me,” he said. “Besides, it’s not like I’m that old anyway.”

“I won’t question it, then,” Silvia said. “Why did you want to speak with me of all people?”

“The other day, a mysterious person came to visit you,” Alan replied. “There’s something that has been bothering me about this information, and I would like to hear it from you.”

“What is that?” Silvia asked.

“I cannot help but feel that this person sought you out because of a connection you still may have with the True Thekohnians,” Alan said.

“There has been no contact from them,” Silvia replied. “Nor do I wish to be a part of them anymore. All I’ve heard from the person who visited me was that they were setting forth a new order for the Thekohnian Region.”

“I see,” Alan said. “It’s not in this country’s interest, but they’re hiding in Ahnlikohn, aren’t they?”

Alan had spoken with both General Fercewend and President Hasker prior to today, both men stating there was some business that the Ameci military had in the city of Glora. Two different matters that Ameci had to deal with, in fact. The first one was one Alan had already known about and was preparing for already, while the other was a mission for the Ameci military. He knew nothing beyond that, but felt that there was something happening there that could affect relations between the countries.

“Yes, that is what I’ve heard,” Silvia answered.

“Perhaps there’s some truth to what you’ve heard, then,” Alan said. “If only I had time to figure it out…”

The time would have to wait, however, as a sudden commotion broke out below. Alan turned his head and looked down to the courtyard; both of his guards were firing at two masked assailants who did not appear to be occupants of this prison.

“What’s going on!?” Silvia asked.

“Just wait,” Alan said.

He looked to see one of his guards getting attacked by one of the assailants, while the other assailant disarmed the other guard and shot him. Alan knew that there was only one reason why these attackers were here, and it was because he was in the prison.

“Silvia, I want you to stay here,” Alan said.

“You can’t be serious,” Silvia said.

“These two, they’re not after you,” he said. “I’m going to try and buy myself some time. There’s a phone on the wall over there. Use it.”

“But they’ll kill you,” she said. “Is your life as the prime minister not important?”

“Silvia, there’s only one thing I consider important,” Alan replied, “And that is the safety and well-being of the people of this country–no–this entire world.”

Silvia frowned. “But how are you going to hold them back?”

“That doesn’t matter,” he said. “Just call the offices. Tell them there’s an emergency at the Iiayine Prison.”

Silva had no time to respond as Alan dashed down the spiral staircase. He was determined to hold back these two assailants, who had already gotten the better of his guards. Alan knew he was heading into an unfavorable situation, but he had to keep Silvia safe. After all, she knew what that mysterious person told her, and there was a chance that there was more information she could give.

“I guess I’ll have to do it,” Silvia said.

She reached over to the phone and picked it up. It rang only one time as the person on the other end picked up. This was a duty that the prime minister entrusted to her, Silvia thought. Despite all of her past misdeeds, she could feel that Alan saw her for more than that. She would have to make it up to him, somehow, if both of them were to make it out alive.


To be continued…


Previous | Next Chapter

Sundown – Chapter 4 (Part 2)

Because of Ayanna’s position, she was able to secure a room necessary for the prisoner. Ayanna brought Mina along with her, mainly because she knew that there was no way the prisoner was going to try and escape. The two women sat on one side of the table while they waited for the prisoner to arrive.

“You know this person?” Mina asked.

“I do,” Ayanna replied. “We used to be friends, though she ended up falling into the clutches of the True Thekohnians.”

“I had no idea,” she said. “You’re not scared?”

“There’s no reason to be,” Ayanna said. “I doubt that she’s going to hold a grudge against me.”

The door opened and revealed a guard, who escorted the red haired prisoner into the room. She took a seat on the opposite side of Ayanna and Mina, and looked into Ayanna’s eyes.

“It’s been some time, Silvia,” Ayanna said.

“It really has,” Silvia replied. “I know it’s an inconvenience, but thank you for taking some time out of your schedule to visit me. “

Ayanna smiled. “It’s hardly an inconvenience,” she said. “I still think of you as a friend, even after all you’ve done.”

“You’re such a good person,” Silvia said. “I guess that I was right to make that request.”

“Right,” Ayanna replied, “About that request: what exactly did you want to tell me about the True Thekohnians?”

“Well, to be fair, it wasn’t my idea,” Silvia said, “I was visited by a stranger early this morning who gave me the information.”

“A stranger?” Ayanna asked. “Usually the guards are on watch during the night… How did this person sneak through?”

“No clue,” Silvia replied. “But that’s not important. You wanted to know more about the remaining True Thekohnians, right?”

“That’s correct,” Mina said. “We’re all looking for those villains, wherever they may be!”

“Some of them have been running around the country, which have lead to bounties being placed,” Ayanna replied. “I already know a couple of people who’ve already made some headway in capturing some of the remaining members.”

“Really?” Silvia asked. “I guess that’s not too surprising, but from what I’ve heard, there’s already an organization that’s popped up in Ahnlikohn calling themselves the True Thekohnians.”

“This is news to me,” Ayanna said. “I assume that this mysterious person told you about this, am I correct?”

“Well, yes, that was what I was told,” Silvia replied. “Apparently, they’ve even captured an Ameci soldier as well.”

“Are you serious?” Ayanna asked.

“This is what I’ve heard,” Silvia said. “I just thought that it was of importance to you because of the connection Ameci has with this country. There’s no reason for me to lie.”

Ayanna took a deep breath and exhaled. “I believe you,” she said. “Do you have any information on this soldier?”

“Only that they serve in the Ameci military,” Silvia answered.

“Darn it!” Mina said. “If Gavin was here, he’d probably know who it might be.”

“I highly doubt that,” Ayanna said. “We have no idea what this soldier looks like; besides, Gavin’s not a part of their military anymore.”

Mina closed her eyes and sighed. “Then what are we supposed to do?”

“Well, what we can do is head back to the prime minister’s office,” Ayanna replied. “It seems that our business is done here, Silvia. It was nice to see you again.”

“Oh, wait,” Silvia said, “There’s something else I need to say.”

“What is it?”

“Not to you, Ayanna,” Silvia replied. “Your name’s Mina, right?”

Mina sparked up as soon as she heard her name. “Yes! What did you want to say, Silvia?”

“So this is just what that stranger told me, but apparently your mother is still alive,” Silvia said. “I guess they expected you to be here, somehow.”

“That’s quite odd,” Ayanna said.

“Are you really sure?” Mina asked. “Wait, is this person related to me!?”

“No,” Silvia replied. “They just told me that if I saw you that I should inform you about your mother.”

“No way!”

“That and her name is Wilma Brynjarr,” Silvia continued. “I have no idea how useful this information will be to you, but I hope that it is.”

Mina sat there with her mouth open as she had no idea what to say. “I… I should thank you,” she said, reaching out to shake Silvia’s hand.

“Honestly, this was very informative,” Ayanna said. “You really haven’t changed at all, have you?”

“I know that society will continue to look down upon me,” Silvia said, “But that doesn’t matter. As long as you can find it in your heart to forgive me, that’s the only thing I care about.”

“Don’t worry, I forgive you,” Ayanna said. She rubbed her eye as she continued to look at Silvia. “Damn it all, this is so embarrassing…”

“That’s all I wanted to hear,” Silvia replied. “And Mina, I really hope you can reunite with your mother.”

“Thanks!” Mina said. “I mean, thanks again, obviously!”

“Of course,” Silvia said. “Hope you both fare well out there.”




On the way back to the prime minister’s office, Ayanna could only think about what Silvia said. Never did she think that the True Thekohnians would be organized once more, nor did she think it was possible for them to be in the neighboring Ahnlikohn. It was something that she would have to talk with Alan about, that much was certain.

“I’ve been wondering,” Mina said, “Just what kind of person is my mother like? Do you think she’s heroic like me?”

“That’s not something I can answer for you,” Ayanna replied. “For all we know, that might just be a lie.”

“You think Silvia was lying?”

“Not her, but the person she spoke to,” Ayanna said. “Actually, forget what I said. I bet that your mother is still alive out there.”

Mina smiled. “I wonder where she is,” she said.

Ayanna pulled up to the parking space. “We’ll have to figure that out some other time,” she said. “Right now, we have other matters to attend to. Come on.”

They stepped out of the car and walked to the building. Ayanna opened the door and allowed Mina to walk in first. As they stepped inside, it appeared that the conference had ended as soldiers and representatives from many countries were walking around.

“Geez, it’s so crowded here,” Mina said. “How the heck would anybody get anything done here?”

“Just ignore it and follow me,” Ayanna said.

They moved through, making sure not to bump into anyone, and entered Alan’s office. Ayanna saw that he was already speaking with someone as she and Mina stood by the door.

“I must say that you are a very well spoken woman, Your Highness,” Alan said. “Of course, that’s no surprise considering who your mentor is.”

“Thank you, Prime Minister,” Rain replied. “Sir Lauren’s told me many stories about you, so actually meeting you is quite the honor.”

“If anyone should be honored, it should be me,” he said. “Merton’s a man with high regard throughout all the region and I’m glad to see that his daughter is no different.”

Alan stopped as he then noticed Ayanna and Mina standing there.

“It’s not like you to come in speechless, Ayanna,” he said. “Please, it’s only appropriate that you two introduce yourselves to the Thedam princess.”

Ayanna gasped. “You mean me, sir?”

“You’re the lieutenant general, right?” Rain asked. She stood up out of her chair and greeted Ayanna with a firm handshake. “My name is Rain Zano Thedam, princess of the Royal Family of Thekohn.”

“It’s an honor to be in your presence,” Ayanna said as she bowed.

“Alan’s praise is well deserved, it seems,” Rain said. “And who may you be?”

Mina pumped her fist into the air. “I’m glad you asked, Your Highness,” she said. “I’m Mighty Mina! Villains tremble at the sight of my powerful fist!”

“Mina, please,” Ayanna said. “It’s a member of the royal family, so you should show a little more respect.”

Rain giggled. “Oh, you shouldn’t be so serious, Miss Ansa,” she said. “I, for one, found that quite charming.”

“That girl is indeed quirky,” Alan said. “A good heart, but odd all the same.”

“Sometimes, a good heart is all you need,” Rain said. “Perhaps I could learn a lot from you, Mighty Mina.”

“You think so?” Mina asked as she shook Rain’s hand. “I don’t know what to say… what’s this feeling that I have?”

“The way you blush is admirable,” Rain said, “And I believe that the word you’re looking for is ‘pride,’ which is befitting for a hero like you.”

Ayanna looked over at Alan. “So I have arrived with some information,” she said. “I had no idea you were going to be speaking in private with the princess, however. Perhaps I should come back after?”

“No, it’s completely fine,” Alan replied. “You don’t mind, do you, Your Highness?”

“I can step out for a moment,” Rain answered, “But I wonder if it’s okay to continue my chat with Mighty Mina. Do you mind?”

Alan laughed. “Go ahead,” he said. “Talk with her to your heart’s content.”

“Very good,” Rain replied. “Shall we?”

Mina stepped out with Rain into the hallway. It was much less crowded now, but that was not where Rain wanted to talk.

“There’s a small room down the hall here,” she said. “I found it when I stepped out during the conference.”

“Okay,” Mina replied.

They wandered down the hallway until they made it to the room that Rain was talking about. It had only a couple of chairs and a small lamp on a table, but Rain did not seem to mind. She invited Mina inside and left the door ajar as she turned on the lamp.

“Do you want to sit down?” Rain asked.

“I’m so excited, I don’t think I can!” Mina said. “What did you want to talk to me about?”

“Oh, a lot of things,” she said, “But I want to talk with you because I feel like this is something I cannot talk with the prime minister about.”

“Wait, me?”

“Yes, Mina, I mean you,” Rain replied. “You just happen to be one of the people I’m looking for, so this is appropriate for you.”

“This is so amazing,” Mina said. “I can’t believe you would ask me for help. I mean, of course I’ll help because I’m the hero of Rezar, but still it’s all so crazy to hear it from a princess!”

“You have a determination and desire to help that no one else has,” Rain said. “It was your group who helped defeat the leader of the True Thekohnians and stopped Llewellyn Rhodes’s regime, so to meet you in person must be fate.”

“Aw, it’s just something a hero like me should do,” Mina said.

“Really, on behalf of the Royal Family of Thekohn, I thank you,” Rain said as she took Mina’s hand into hers. “Which is why I have a request for you and your partners.”

Mina raised her eyebrows. “What is that?”

“I need your group to help me,” Rain replied. “Right now, my father has been overcome with an illness. I’m worried because there was rumor that I heard that someone is planning to assassinate him.”

“Your father?” Mina asked. “The king?”

“Indeed. What I’m asking for is your help in finding the assassin,” Rain said. “I don’t have enough clues to go on, nor do I have any idea who it might be; however, I feel that if I asked for help from you and your partners, we can find out who is planning out this attack.”

“I would love to help,” Mina said, “That is, if my friends weren’t out of the country right now.”

Rain looked off to the side. “Oh, I see…”

“But please don’t be disappointed!” Mina exclaimed. “I’m sure they’ll be back soon! I know that they will!”

“No, don’t get the wrong idea,” she said. “I’m still hopeful that we can put a stop to this… In fact, I’m perfectly willing to wait until they come back.”

“Of course, of course!”

Rain smiled. “You really are so full of energy,” she said.

“I get that a lot,” Mina replied. “Right now, I just want to do a backflip but I can’t because of this room…”

Rain covered her mouth as she tried not to laugh. “Personally I’d love to see that. Maybe later, you can demonstrate to me your backflip?”

“Yeah, yeah, I can do it!”

“Then I will look forward to it,” Rain said. “After all, you will promise to help me, right?”

“Sure,” Mina answered.

“Thank you.”

Rain reached out her arms and hugged Mina, who had no other choice but to return the favor. For Mina, she liked Rain’s appreciation for her ability as a hero, but also because Rain was such an important person. To have the princess of the Royal Kingdom of Thekohn embracing her was quite an honor. Perhaps that was what Ayanna was talking about earlier, Mina thought.




[5th of September, 2740 AD; on the train to Jiaikohn]


Through the southbound route past Bel, Law observed the barren land slowly turn into greenery once more. He and Gavin were only a couple of hours away from Kun, the major city and capital of Jiaikohn. They had a major task at hand, which both brothers knew that they needed to gain some information about the True Thekohnians.

“This pamphlet is quite informative,” Law said. “Bro, did you know that Khun is considered the fashion capital of the world?”

“Why do you think I care?” Gavin asked.

He was deep in thought about hunting down this bounty; not for Rysol Wilk, but for the person that put up the bounty. If Law was correct, and that was a big if, then there would be a large reward waiting for them when they arrived back in Rezar.

“Come on, you’re not the least bit curious?” Law asked. “Then again, this is you I’m talking to after all.”

“I’m just focused,” Gavin said.

“Are you worried that we might bump into them?”

“You know I’m not concerned about him, or her,” Gavin replied. “No, it’s different. It’s just this gun, you know?”

Gavin gestured over to the shiny, silver gun that was in the holster on his side. He had received it from Ayanna the night before, as well as a generous amount of ammunition. Not that he needed that many bullets, anyway. Still, he was grateful towards her for taking that risk and handing him a weapon he knew all too well.

“Been awhile since I’ve held a gun,” Gavin said. “This one’s quite a beauty, too.”

“I admit that it’s pretty nice,” Law said. “It’s almost as if you’re more into that gun than you would be with a person.”

Gavin scoffed. “Your imagination is running wild again.”

“Well, bro, it’s not like I care,” he said. “We’re just travellers right now, but once we step off that train we’ll be on the case.”

“Seems that way.”

Law turned back to the pamphlet in his hand. “Wow, they even have a sharpshooting tournament going on,” he said. “Looks like it’s tomorrow.”


“Oh, I thought that you would be interested, bro,” Law replied. “It’s your forte, isn’t it?”

“I’ve no time for a distraction like that,” Gavin said. “Even if it does sound tempting.”

“It’s just a thought,” Law said. “You know: we catch the guy and after that you can show off how good you are.”

Gavin adjusted his sunglasses. “Lawrence, you’re really trying to make this happen, aren’t you?”

“Totally up to you.”

Instead of a response, Gavin just laughed. He’d have to see for himself what this tournament was all about. He might not have had a gun for the past six months, but Gavin still managed to keep his eyes sharp during that time. Training with Mina helped with that. The urge to show off was high, but Gavin knew there was something he and Law needed to do first.


To be continued…


Previous | Next Chapter

Chapter 10 – Part 1

[2740 AD; Macro Plaza in front of Iiayine Castle – Deca District]


Panic filled the streets as people ran throughout. The prime minister’s office had been bombed, with multiple people caught in the explosion. Ayanna led Alan away from the wreckage, while the Ahnlikohn soldiers helped Harring. Fercewend barked orders to his soldiers, telling them to find those responsible.

“Go, go, go!” Fercewend commanded. “You guys secure the area, while the rest of you work with the Iiayikohnians to find out who is behind this! That’s an order!”
“Rohan,” Tori said as she ran up to him, “Have you seen Henry?”

“I haven’t,” he replied. “Hold on, stay with me.”

They followed after Ayanna and Alan, looking for the safe point from the danger. Finally, they ended up at the small tent that was propped up for the prime minister’s protection.

“Has the area been secured?” Alan asked.

Fercewend nodded. “I can trust that you will be able to watch over Tori,” he said.

“Are you going out there?” Tori asked.

“I know it’s unconventional, but I cannot let this destruction happen while I’m around,” Fercewend replied. “My soldiers need me out there right now!”

He picked up a gun and sword and left the tent. Ayanna looked to both Tori and Alan, and followed Fercewend out of the tent with her weapons. She ran out, looking around until she found Gavin directing the last few people out of the area. Law and Mina were also there helping out. Ayanna sprinted up to them, making sure not to trip over any debris.

“Mr. Power,” Ayanna said to Gavin, “I have to thank you for your help.”

“You don’t have to thank me,” he said. “We can talk later after we take care of this.”

“Agreed,” Ayanna said. “Why are you two still out here?”

“I can’t just watch as this goes on,” Law replied.

“We’re going to help Gavin out!” Mina exclaimed. “If any of those True Thekohnians are around, I’m going to show them my new ‘Face Breaker’ move!”

“Well, most of them are going to have a weapon of sorts,” Law said. He grinned. “I don’t think they’re going to see what’s coming.”

“What are you three doing?” Gavin asked. “We have to move! Now!”

The four of them moved along, continuing to help the civilians out of the area. Most of them were already escorted out of the plaza, but there were some still hanging around. Ayanna and Gavin led the charge with Law and Mina not too far behind.

“Keep going!” Ayanna said.

They continued to run down the streets, away from the plaza. There were no more explosions, but the screams of other people still echoed throughout. Ayanna evacuated the people from the plaza with Gavin, away from the action. They both looked behind themselves to find that Law and Mina were nowhere to be seen.

Gavin stomped his foot. “Damn it!”


Law had turned back in pursuit of the True Thekohnians. He knew that despite this tragedy, this was his best possible moment to move forward. With the street cleared out, there was little stopping him from dashing towards his enemy.

“Why are we going back?” Mina asked, running right beside him.

Law stopped in his tracks. “Why are you here?”

“I saw you turn around,” she replied. “I thought that you forgot something.”

“No, Mina, I’ve got to do my job here!” Law said. “Although it looks like they’ve decided to greet me a little early.”

They looked ahead as some of the True Thekohnians in Iiayikohnian soldier uniforms stood over. Law counted eight of them, but he was sure that there were more to come unless he did something.

“What do you think we should do, Mina?”

“Why are you asking me?” Mina asked. “We kick their butts, of course!”

“I like the enthusiasm,” Law replied. “But we’re going to have to run first.”


“Just trust me,” he said.

Law and Mina headed into the nearby alleyway as the True Thekohnians pursued them. With the narrow path Law snapped back and eyed the trash can by his side.

“Let me just steal this for a second,” Law said, picking up the metal lid.

Mina backed up behind him as the first assailant charged at Law. Law waved the lid for a moment, and then swung it down onto the man’s head. The man dropped to his knees and rubbed his head, but Mina had other options.

“Take this!” Mina said, delivering the punch to the man’s face. He fell to the ground, knocked out cold from her devastating hit.

The next man yelled, thrusting his arm forward with knife in hand. Law moved to the side and grabbed the man’s arm. His arm locked as Law disarmed him and bashed him over the head with the same lid.

“Thanks for the gift,” Law said as the second man dropped.

He threw the knife at the next man to run in, hitting him in the eye. The third screamed and kneeled down while the fourth began to hesitate and ran away. Law knocked out the man with the wounded eye with a swift kick to the temple. The remaining four looked at one another, with two of them deciding to retreat while the other two stayed.

“Just you two left,” Law commented. “Now we can kick their butts, Mina.”

“You could have left a couple more of them,” Mina said. “But I’ll be glad to show these two my fists.”

She charged at the two remaining members, her fists flying as the two men were caught by surprise. Mina’s first punch hit the first remaining man, sending him flying backwards. The second remaining man was not as lucky as Mina delivered a barrage of punches to his face. He stopped to catch his breath, but Mina had other ideas. She grabbed him by his arm and flung him in the direction of the other man. The force of her throw knocked both of them out, collapsed over one another.

Mina slapped her forehead. “I forgot to say the names of my moves,” she said. “I knew there was something wrong!”

Law stepped out of the alleyway. “Seems like you did right to me,” he said. “Now, where the hell are the rest of them…”

It was then that he spotted Wihll moving down the street with Silvia in his grasp. Law stretched his arms and began to follow after him.

“Wait up!” Mina said.

The pounding footsteps Law produced were enough to catch Wihll’s attention. He turned around, with Silvia jerked around to the side. He saw Law stand before him, Mina right behind him, and cracked open a wide smile.

“Ah, I remember you,” Wihll said. “You swooped in to save that worthless woman the other night. Why does that sound so familiar to me?”

“Law!” Silvia said.

“You mind explaining me what this was for?” Law asked. “Your boys didn’t do a very good job of telling us.”

“Why should I tell anything to some inferior Ameci?” Wihll asked.

“I don’t think I’ve told you anything about me,” Law said. “How would you know that I am Ameci?”

“Call it a hunch,” Wihll replied. “It’s a shame that Ansa isn’t here, especially with this girl here.”

“Certainly a candidate for gentleman of the year,” Law mocked.

“Like I give a shit about your thoughts,” Wihll said, throwing Silvia aside. “I have no use for dead weight at this point, especially when it interferes with my mission.”

Mina growled as her fists shook. “Coward! You caused destruction in my home,” she said, “You are the worst of all villains!”

“I was wondering when you were going to speak up,” Wihll said. “But it seems that you’re sorely mistaken. This is not the work of a villain, but the foundation for a new dawn!”

“Shut up!” Mina said. She stepped closer towards Wihll.

“Go ahead and come at me,” Wihll said. “But if you do, just know that it’ll be her blood on your hands, girl.”

Wihll took his pistol out and pointed it at Silvia. She lay there, frozen on the ground as Mina locked up as well. Laughter erupted from Wihll’s mouth as he withdrew his gun.

“Ah, that’s what I thought,” he said. “You’re just another hypocrite.”

“You’re really going to leave, aren’t you?” Law asked. “That’s a bit of a shame, isn’t it?”

“I already told you I have no time for inferior people like you,” Wihll said. “Besides, I don’t need this woman for my next move. If you really want her so bad, be my guest.”

“Wait, I can’t stay here!” Silvia said.

“Until next time,” Wihll said, “Is what I’d say if I cared about you two, but I don’t intend on coming back here for a while.”

Wihll departed, running away from Law and Mina. Silvia dropped her face into her hands as Ayanna and Gavin arrived.

“Lawrence, would you explain to me the meaning of this?” Gavin asked.

Law rolled his eyes. “Seems like you’re out of the loop,” he said. “Perhaps Mina can tell you.”

“You’re not going anywhere!” Gavin said.

“Well, that’s unfortunate,” Law said. “After what that blond man said, I was going to pursue him.”

“What did Wihll say?” Ayanna asked. She soon spotted Silvia on the ground. “Silvia!”

Silvia looked up at Ayanna, tears in her eyes. “Ayanna…”

“Seems I don’t know what goes on in that man’s head,” Law said. “Looks like we’re fortunate enough to have a reunion, though.”

Ayanna held Silvia close to her, the redhead resting her head on Ayanna’s shoulder. “Do you know where Wihll is going?”

“He didn’t tell me,” Silvia replied.

“I have an idea,” Law said. “Ayanna, take Silvia with you. Mina, try to keep up.”

Law made his way after Wihll as Mina ran with him. Ayanna and Silvia stood up and headed back towards the direction of the safe point in the Deca District. Soon, a group of Iiayikohnian soldiers arrived to apprehend some of the remaining True Thekohnians laying on the ground. As they did, an exhausted Gavin arrived to see that he was already too late.


[2740 AD; The Markets of the Deci District]


After the scatter, Sorin, Gale, and Eva were searching for Kirk in the back street of the markets. It was uncertain whether or not he would be here, but the three of them had to find out. Kirk had been missing ever since the explosions went off, something that had baffled Sorin.

“You think that he’d be easy to spot,” Eva said. “Just what are you doing, Kirk?”

“It’s surprisingly safe here,” Gale said.

“It looks like most of the commotion has died down, fortunately,” Eva said. “Many of these True Thekohnians have either been arrested or they’ve already left.”

“Are we not concerned about that?” Sorin asked.

“We can’t do much about it,” Eva replied. “I’m just hoping that Alan is safe.”

They moved through the empty market, with no sight or sound of Kirk present. Sorin moved out of the markets and onto the street, and that was when he saw him. His back facing Sorin, the man with long black hair was face to face with a member of the Iiayikohnian army.

“Father?” Sorin asked.

The man drew a long blade with what looked to be a set of saw teeth in the middle. He screamed as he rushed the soldier, who stood unable to move. With a deft swing of the sword, the man cut the soldier down to the floor.

“Sorin, what are you doing?” Eva asked, arriving by his side. “Gale, stand back!”

Gale stood on the sidewalk as the man turned around. Despite his poise, it became obvious to both Sorin and Eva that he was not Kirk. His long hair and an unkempt beard covered his face, while gloves were on his hands. He took one look at Sorin and dropped down to his knee. A rattling wail emitted from him as he clutched his head with his free hand.

“I’ve seen him before,” Eva said. “I just know it.”

The man pulled at his hair. “Go away! I… You don’t…!”

Sorin took out his sword and positioned himself. “Who are you?”

“You… The swordsman,” the man said. “I… I’m the… end…”

“The end?” Sorin asked.

“Kirk… He’s been looking…”

“How do you know my father?”

“You’re… Sorin? No! That’s impossible!”

The man raised his sword. Sorin was uncertain what he was going to do next.

“Look out!” Eva exclaimed.

She moved in front of Sorin, taking out her sword and defending the oncoming assault from the long haired man. He backed off as both Eva and Sorin put up their guards.

“I’ll ask again,” Sorin repeated, “Who are you?”

“…sol… Rysol…”

“No way,” Sorin said.

“Sorin, you don’t believe him, do you?” Gale asked.

“How should I know?” Sorin asked. “I want to know for myself.”

“Believe me… if you want,” Rysol said. “Just know that this is the end…”

“Take this!”

Eva swung her sword at Rysol again, but this time he blocked it with his hand. She tried to move her sword, but he had a good handle on it as he attempted to strike with his sword. Sorin was quick to defend Eva this time, blocking Rysol’s attack.

“I don’t want to fight you!” Sorin said. “Please, put down your sword!”

Rysol gritted his teeth. He let go of Eva’s blade and backed off, withdrawing his sword in the process. Sorin withdrew his own sword, too, as did Eva.

“Have you seen him?” Sorin asked.

“I don’t know… who you’re talking about,” Rysol said.

“Why did you decide to stop attacking us?” Eva asked.

“Gah! Stop asking…!” Rysol exclaimed. “I can’t be here! Not when… they’ll kill everyone…”

“Just tell me one thing,” Sorin said, “You really haven’t seen… my father?”

“No… I have not seen him,” Rysol said. “I have to stop them… The True Thekohnians…”

With that, Rysol turned around and left. His exit left Sorin, Gale, and Eva with more questions than answers. They had no time to react, though, as Ameci soldiers moved through the markets.

“Let’s go, you two,” Eva said. “We have to go back!”


[2740 AD; Macro Plaza – Deca District – Safe Point Tent]


“You do realize that what you’ve done is unforgivable,” Ayanna said.

“I know,” Silvia replied. “I’ll tell you everything you need to know.”

Ayanna sat opposite of Silvia at the small table, while Alan and Tori watched. Outside, things appeared to be calming down as the plaza was secured. Still, the True Thekohnians has made their presence known.

“Start at the beginning,” Ayanna said. “Why did you join them?”

“Because I didn’t know,” Silvia replied. “I heard all of the rumors, but when I joined, they said they wanted to change this world.”

“What do you know about their leader?” Alan asked.

“I’ve never met them,” Silvia said.

Alan groaned. “This is unfortunate,” he said. “Major Ansa, have other members been taken in yet?”

“From what I’ve heard, yes,” Ayanna answered. “We’ll have many more to question after this.”

“I’m going to make this blunt,” Alan said, “I don’t think that Miss Roeik is very reliable. There may be a past connection between you two, but we need to work fast.”

“I’m aware, prime minister,” Ayanna said. “Silvia, I can’t do my job if you don’t tell us information we need to know. Please, if there’s anything, share it with us.”

Silvia sighed. “There is one thing,” she said. “It has to do with Lokke.”

Alan leaned in. “Explain.”

“He and Wihll were talking a couple days ago,” she said. “They said they had a plan that was the be all, end all of the True Thekohnians mission.”

“Surely this can’t be their plan,” Alan said. “Ansa, ask her how Lokke was able to communicate with Wihll.”

“He broke out,” Silvia said, “Or rather, someone helped him out.”

“Who?” Alan asked. “Answer me now, damn it!”

Silvia shook her head. “I can’t answer something I don’t know,” she said. “If I had to guess, maybe it was the leader. They would have to have some influence to help break Lokke out without it being an incident.”

“Alan, maybe we should think about it differently,” Tori said.

“What do you mean?” Alan asked.

“We’re going nowhere with this line of questioning,” Ayanna said. “Let me ask this, then: do you know what they’re planning for Maeitakohn, Silvia?”

“I don’t know,” she replied. Then, she gasped. “This was the distraction! Wihll orchestrated this attack to cause a distraction away from Maeitakohn!”

“I figured as much,” Alan said, “But it seems like they wanted to have us running around while they planned their next move.”

As he finished, in walked Fercewend with Gale, Sorin, and Eva. They were all tired from running and took seats in the tent.

“This has become quite a crowd, it seems,” Alan said. “You certainly arrived at the right time, haven’t you?”

“Did I miss anything?” Fercewend asked.

“I can help you catch up, Rohan,” Tori said.

“Thank you. The area is safe now,” Fercewend said. “Unfortunately, I cannot say the same of the people that were caught in the blast.”

“Let’s move this conversation to the embassy, then,” Alan said. “It’ll beat sitting here in this tent.”

“That sounds like a good idea,” Fercewend said. “Let’s go, everyone.”


To be continued…


Previous | Next Part

Chapter 9 – Part 3

[2740 AD; Macro Plaza in front of Iiayine Castle – Deca District]


The morning sun shined as security was lined up from side to side, citizens gathering in the plaza to watch the speeches that would be given today. Kirk’s group arrived early, running into Gavin, Law, and Mina who were already there.

“Why are you out here?” Sorin asked Gavin. “Shouldn’t you be with the Ameci army?”

“I suppose you of all people wouldn’t understand,” Gavin replied. “I do things my way. Besides, being here would be advantageous.”

Law tilted his head towards Sorin. “All these soldiers, you honestly don’t think that there’ll be at least one assassination attempt?”

“I’m sorry,” Gavin said. “None of you had the chance to meet. As much as it pains me to say it, that’s my brother.”

“You’re Lawrence?” Gale asked.

“Well, last time I checked,” Law replied. He gazed into Gale’s eyes for a split second. “It’s nice to meet you, but I would suggest waiting a couple more years before we can do anything serious.”

Gavin raised his hand and brought it down, slapping the back of Law’s head. “Show some restraint for once!”

“I am, bro,” Law said. “I was letting this girl down gently.”

“It’s Gale,” she said. “And I’m 18…”

“18, huh?” Law asked. “If we’re doing the math, one and eight make nine. Nine flipped over is six, which happens to be my lucky number. Do you want to know why, Gale?”

“Don’t answer that, Gale,” Gavin said. “You will only want to hit him afterwards.”

“Okay,” she said.

Law shook his head. “You really know how to piss on my fun, don’t you?”

“Anyway, perhaps it’s my turn,” Sorin said. He put on a smile and his hand forward. “I’m Sorin… That’s my father Kirk and his friend Eva.”

“Sonny and Kurt, is it?” Law asked. “Well, it doesn’t matter. I want to know her story.”

Eva pointed at herself. “Me?”

“You seem so elegant, even though you don’t dress that way,” Law said. “And there is certainly a story behind that eyepatch. Maybe after the speech you can tell me while we walk in the park.”

Eva looked over at Kirk, as Kirk just scratched his head. “Sorry to disappoint you, young man, but no,” she said.

“If it’s Kurt there, I can take him,” he replied.

“Can you hit him again, Gavin?” Kirk asked. “At least until he starts calling me by my name.”

Gavin cracked his knuckles. “My pleasure.”

“Bro, wait!” Law said. Gavin’s hand hung in the air as Law started to laugh.

“They certainly are brothers, aren’t they, Sorin?” Gale asked.

“It really seems like it,” Sorin said.

Gale then frowned and sighed. “I just got what Lawrence meant by his lucky number,” she said.

“What did he mean?” Sorin asked.

“You don’t know?” Gale asked.

“I’m not really a numbers guy,” he replied.

“Maybe I’ll show you later,” she said, and then muttered to herself, “Although I guess I’d be learning, too.”

“You two!” Gavin said. “Are you going to just have a conversation to yourselves?”

“Why not?” Gale asked.

“Maybe because I’m not done introducing people yet,” he answered. He turned to Mina.

Mina smiled. “You didn’t forget me!”

“Unlike loverboy over there, I actually try to remember people,” Gavin said. “Go on, introduce yourself!”

“Okay! Hi, my name’s Mina,” she said with a giggle. “I’m this city’s hero and every villain’s worst nightmare!”

Sorin shook her hand and was surprised by how much force she had put into her handshake. “N-nice meeting you, Mina,” he said. “Go easy with Gale, okay?”

Gale waved her hand at Mina. “Hello,” she said. “You actually fight bad guys?”

“Of course!” Mina replied, fists clenched. “I even beat Law here!”

“How many times do I have to say it? That was a draw,” Law said. “And you even said it yourself: I’m not a villain!”

“Then maybe you would like to have a rematch?” Mina asked.

“Oh no, I can’t possibly do that,” Law said.

“Are you scared?” Mina asked. “I thought that you were fearless because you believed in luck.”

Law scoffed. “I can’t just make my luck work like it’s an on/off switch,” he said. “Certainly not when it comes to the ladies.”

“Wow, that’s the first thing you’ve said all day that’s made sense,” Kirk remarked.

“Are you speaking to me, Kurt?” Law asked. “I didn’t expect you to be the one dropping the dry wit.”

“Oh no, I was just giving you a compliment,” Kirk insisted.

“That’s too bad for you, then,” Law said. “If Eva there had said what you said, I would already be on one knee.”

“And I would tell you ‘no’ yet again,” Eva said. “Learn to take a rejection when you see it.”

“Oof, clipping the wings before the bird gets fly,” Law said.

“Drop it,” Gavin demanded.

“Fine,” Law said. “I guess I’ll shut up.”

Law wandered off to the side, leaving Gavin to turn back to the rest of the group. Many more people arrived into the plaza as the Ahnlikohnian soldiers made their way to the stage.

“Looks like things are about to go underway,” Gavin said.

“Maybe I can talk to Alan,” Kirk said.

“Good luck with that,” Gavin said. “I spoke with major Ansa before you got here and she said that he’s under maximum security right now.”

“I’m certain that he’d be okay if I talked to him before the speech,” Kirk replied. He moved up into the crowd, excusing his way through the groups of people that were forming.

“What are you doing!?” Eva asked. “You can’t be serious!”

It was too late, though, as Kirk soon was closing in on the stage.

“You stubborn man,” she growled. “Sometimes it’s like you just want me to be angry at you.”

“Is he going to be okay?” Sorin asked.

“They’ll probably just kick him out,” Gavin replied.

“Why would he go by himself, though?” Gale asked. “I thought that we were all in this together…”

Before anyone could answer, the sound of microphone feedback filled the air. It was time. The Chancellor of Ahnlikohn had taken the stage, making his way up to the podium. The big moment was about to begin.


Up on stage the chancellor spoke with a calm, reassuring tone to the people of Iiayikohn. Fercewend and Alan watched with Henry and Tori as the chancellor began to wind down his speech.

“Harring knows how to put people at ease, doesn’t he,” Fercewend said.

“It works with his people,” Alan said. “Why not go with what works?”

Fercewend chuckled. “I have to admit that I am shaking,” he said. “I’ve spoken before my men many times, but I’ve never had to address an entire country before.”

“Consider it a learning experience, Rohan,” Alan replied. “I have no doubt that you’d make a good leader some day.”

“To hear you say that is an honor,” Fercewend said. “Though perhaps you are just trying to reassure me.”

“Rohan, you know I would never tell a lie,” he said. “I know that Henry can attest to that.”

Henry nodded. “I’m surprised to even be here,” he said. “It takes a lot of leadership to do that.”

“I agree,” Tori said.

“Well, I guess if you’re all saying it, it must be true,” Fercewend said as a roaring applause broke out. “Looks like I’m up next.”

“Good luck,” Henry said.

“Thanks, Henry.”

Fercewend approached the podium, grabbing both sides as he looked at the mass of people standing before him. They applauded him as he thanked them for being there. As the applause began to die down, Fercewend cleared his throat and began to speak.

“A great man once said to me: ‘In the times of darkness, that is when the sun burns the hardest.’ That man happened to be my mentor, Albert Atlas,” he said. “Currently, we are in a similar moment with Maeitakohn…”


Wihll placed the last bomb at the base of the interior, wiping his forehead as he watched outside the window. Fercewend’s speech appeared to be coming to a close as cheers were muffled by the glass.

“Our glory will be realized soon enough,” he said. “Silvia, what the hell do you think you’re doing!?”

Silvia looked out of the window. “We’re doing the right thing…”

“Are you listening to me?” Wihll asked, grabbing her by the wrist.

“Let me go!”

“I know a traitor when I see one,” he said. “Do you know what happened to the last person to betray me?”

“I… don’t know,” she answered.

“I put a knife in his back!” Wihll exclaimed. “That is, if I see him again, but you’re welcome to be his replacement if you want…”

“No, don’t,” she uttered. “I’ll do what you say.”

“Do you think I buy that bullshit? I know you’re going to try something funny, so I’m not going to let you go.”

Silvia walked with Wihll as they proceeded to leave the building, the bombs ready to go off. What was going to happen next, Wihll was sure that no one was going to forget it.


“People of Iiayikohn,” Alan began, “I speak to you today because as the prime minister, I am the extension of yourselves. You all are the reason why I stand here right now, speaking to you.”

Henry clapped his hands as he spotted Kirk moving through the crowd. He appeared to be in a chase, so Henry scanned the crowd as he saw the person that was being chased. It was then that Henry realized who the gray and brown haired man was and leaned forward, ready to leap out of his seat.

“The path to Maeitakohn and it’s prosperity is a tough one,” Alan said, “But as a united front, all of us, be it Iiayikohnian, Ameci, Ahnlikohnian, Maeitakohnian, or any of the other countries in the Thekohnian Region, will stand together regardless of who is threatening us!”

Cheers erupted as flashes of light filled the air. Glass began to break as explosions boomed throughout. The cheers soon turned to awe, and then to screams as people began to realize what was happening.

“The prime minister!” Ayanna exclaimed.

She rushed to the stage and met with Alan. A couple of other Iiayikohnian soldiers were there, too, and helped escort him, Fercewend and Harring out of the area. Tori started to look around, but Henry was nowhere to be seen. Gunshots rang out as Gavin tried to direct the people away from the scene. Eva yelled to Sorin and Gale, while Law and Mina moved along with Gavin. Despite everyone’s efforts, however, it was clear that the damage was already done. Chaos filled the streets as the True Thekohnians got what they wanted.


Previous | Next Chapter

Chapter 8 – Part 3

[2740 AD; True Thekohnians hideout – Nano District]


“Open up!” Wihll demanded. “It’s Wihll!”

The wooden door creaked open as Wihll walked into the dim room. At the table, Silvia sat reading through a book. He crept up to the table, towering over her as he threw down his fist, the loud thud resonating throughout the room.

“Victor!” Silvia blurted.

“Are you deaf, woman?” Wihll asked. “Your friend was so eager to let me in, the very least you could do is say hello to me.”


“That’s more like it,” he said. “You’ve got some explaining to do, Miss Roeik.”

“I do?” Silvia asked. “What could it be?”

Wihll uttered a deep chuckle. “Do you happen to know an Ayanna Ansa?”

“Why-why would you ask that?”

“You don’t need to answer,” he said, “It seems I already know about the sin you’ve committed. You truly are a marvelous woman.”

“I don’t know what you mean…”

“Tell me,” Wihll said, “Why did you decide to join the True Thekohnians?”

“Because I couldn’t stand to watch people getting hurt,” she replied.

“Yes, that’s right,” he said. “Too many of our brothers and sisters have gotten hurt because of the selfishness of the elites. Do you know where I’m going with this?”

“Where?” Silvia asked.

“If you really are devoted to this cause, then you must cut ties with those who pledge allegiance to the elites,” Wihll said. “If we want bloodshed to end, we must first take down the ones responsible.”

“I heard about what happened,” she said. “You… You’ve hurt some people, too.”

“There’s a lot you have yet to learn, Silvia,” Wihll replied. “When you’ve seen the things I have, maybe then you’ll understand why such extreme methods are necessary.”

“If that’s what you believe, then I want out.”

Wihll grinned. He started to laugh again, pounding the table as he did. Once he was finished, he opened his eyes again and brandished his knife.

“Do you fail to understand?” Wihll asked. “You don’t just ‘get out’ of the True Thekohnians. Look at this!”

He opened his coat, revealing the bullet wound he had received from Ayanna a couple of nights ago.

“This is the burden I carry,” he continued. “This is the wound that will stay with me until my death!”

“You mean… the bullet is still inside you?”

“You really are a stupid woman,” Wihll said, closing up his coat. “Why you even were accepted into this group is beyond me. Of course it’s still inside of me!”

Silvia’s hands shook as she tried to reach for a nearby weapon. She spotted a small bottle and picked it up, throwing it at Wihll’s head.

“Was that your attempt to kill me?”

“I just wanted you to be quiet,” she replied.

“You claim to oppose violence, but have no problem with throwing a bottle at me,” Wihll said. “The hypocrisy is rich! You’re as bad as the Iiayikohnians!”

“Just what do you even want!?”

“I just wanted to know if you knew Major Ansa,” Wihll replied.

“Yes I do,” she said. “Are you happy?”

“I’m glowing as bright as a fierce sun,” he answered.

“Please spare her,” Silvia said.

“That is entirely out of the question,” Wihll said. “Our leader has requested that the takedown of the Iiayikohnians must include any and all involved. I would say I’m sorry, but I’m no liar.”

“You are a liar, though!”

“No, I am a hero,” he said. “Though I will admit I do play dirty sometimes. That’s what you have to be when playing a rigged game, Miss Roeik.”

Wihll moved the knife closer to Silvia’s neck, the sharp side being only an inch away from her. Her eyes looked down as he pushed the blade of the knife onto her neck.

“I’m not afraid to cut down anyone in my way,” he said. “If you value your life, you would do your very best to stay out of my way.”

Wihll withdrew his knife, letting Silvia sigh in relief. The door creaked once again as an short, older man with gray and brown hair walked in.

“Victor Wihll! What are you doing?”

“I’m just having a chat with Miss Roeik,” Wihll replied. “What are you doing down here, Mr. Lokke?”

“Have you been paying attention to what’s going on?” Walton Lokke asked.

“Of course I have,” Wihll replied. “You can’t go anywhere with these inferior goons waltzing around!”

“Well, they’re already discussing Maeitakohn,” Lokke said. “Seems like they’re forcing us to play our hand.”

“If that’s the game they want to play, then perhaps we should play it,” Wihll said. “Don’t you think so, Silvia?”

“I… do whatever you want,” she said.

“That’s a vote in my favor,” Wihll said, “So how about it?”

“What do you suggest, then?” Lokke asked.

“If we want to get the head start of Maeitakohn, then we need to hit these assholes where it hurts the most,” Wihll replied.

“Ah, I know what you mean,” Lokke said. “Operation Ablaze.”

“What’s Operation Ablaze?” Silvia asked.

“The grand finale,” Wihll answered. “The be all, end all of the True Thekohnians mission.”

“Clearly put,” Lokke added, “When this plan is enacted, Iiayikohn, and in turn the rest of the Thekohnian Region, will never be the same again.”

“Then I will begin the first course of action,” Wihll said. “It really looks like things are moving much faster than we expected them to.”

“Where are you going?” Lokke asked. “You know that they’ll be looking for you, right?”

“Don’t worry,” Wihll replied. “A couple of soldiers won’t keep me down. I am combat perfected!”

Lokke shook his head. “Whatever,” he said. “Just do what you have to do, and don’t get caught.”

“Believe me,” Wihll said, “Once phase one goes into effect, they will be too busy running around with their heads cut off to try and catch me.”

“Then I will see you later,” Lokke said. “To our leader.”

“To our leader, indeed,” Wihll said.

Wihll left the room, leaving just Silvia and Lokke behind. There was just one place that he had to go to now, and Wihll wanted to get there before the night fell. There would almost certainly be security, but it was a job that Wihll believed he was sent out to accomplish.


To be continued…


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