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[Novel] The Emerald Empire

 

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Posted on Thu Jan 15, 2015 6:06 pm

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Hai peoples, so here's the prologue to the novel I'm writing. I could really use some readers and comments and suggestions and critiques and the like, and, welp, here it is. You can also read it on deviant.art  http://eaglecicada.deviantart.com

Prologue

It's been two hundred years since The Convertion struck, turning all living creatures except humanity into strange creatures known as Familiars. These Familiars look mostly the same as they did before the Convertion, but they are transparent, like ghosts, and have been drained of all their color. Despite their ghostly looks, they can not walk through walls, or float like a ghost can. The most intriguing thing about them, however, is that they can not disobey their masters orders, no matter what. The Convertion was a man-made disease created by a power hungry man, whom used hundreds of Familiars to go to war with the kingdom, seeking the throne. In the end, both the King and the madman died, and Basilisk, a majestic creature owned by the King, disappeared with the loss of his master, and is said to have turned itself to stone, and awaits the return of its master.

It is now year 2015. A bald, middle aged man stood, staring out his window, arms behind his back, the sun shining on his bald head. The world outside looks lifeless. The grass, trees, and plants are all transparent and gray, leaving the world with no color. The Convertion made anything with life other than humanity void of color. It's truly a sad sight. One would never know what the world looked like when it had color, since two hundred years ago technology had not advanced to the point of being able to take pictures in anything other than black and white. Compared to the colorless world outside, inside here looks like some type of paradise. The walls, floor, and ceiling are all coated with emerald paint, and there's a bright light coming from the fireplace.

The man sighs, and walks over to a picture, staring at it blankly. It's a picture of himself, holding two little girls with bright blue eyes, who look to be no older than two-years. One of the girls has magenta hair, and the other blonde. Standing next to him is a woman, clearly pregnant, with half of her hair magenta, and the other half blonde, clearly where the girls got their hair from. She also has the same blue eyes as the girls. The woman and the girls look nothing like him. His eyes are blood-red, he has a green beard, one of his arms is a darker shade than the rest of his skin, as if it had been badly burnt, and on the right side of his face is an eerie, metal mask, completely covering that side of his face. He has an ominous presence about him, making him look completely unorthodox next to such a beautiful woman and adorable little girls. Despite how different he looks from them, this was his wife and his daughters. With how colorful his family is, they don't look like they belong in such a gray world at all. There's suddenly a knock on the door.

“Come in.” he says, dryly.

Five bearded men whom look like they are in their 60's walk in, dressed in very similar robes to the ones the masked man is wearing, making them look like some type of ancient sorcerers. Emblazoned on their robes is two capital E's inside an emerald-colored circle. “Afternoon, Master Sartur.” one of them says, closing the door behind him. This one has a brown beard, and several bald spots on his head.

“Afternoon, fellow Wise Men!” the masked man, Sartur says. “Wise Man Zart, how is your wife doing?” he asks.

“Heh, it's your wife you should be worrying about, isn't it? She's the one with our future king in her womb, not mine.” replies Zart.

One of the other Wise Men speaks. “I still can't help but think that your plan is all up to chance, Sartur. We're going to wait eighteen years for your boy, whom isn't even born yet, to come of age, to crown our king? That's quite unreasonable, in all honesty. Why don't we just make my son king? I mean, I was the first to have a son, two years earlier than you, while you had two daughters in a row.” he says, stroking his red beard.

“Come now, Wise Man Vincent, we've been over this before. Your son does not have The Power. There is nothing special about him. Our King absolutely must have The Power. Without The Power, that son of yours is no better than a pet dog.” replies Sartur.

Vincent crosses his arms. “Atleast I actually have a child, unlike these three pigs, Johnathon, Leonardo, and Garrison. You fools are worthless.” The three Wise Men named Johnathon, Leonardo, and Garrison look astonished at Vincent's remark. Garrison walks up to Vincent as if about to say or do something, but Sartur raises his hand.

“We're Wise Men, not barbarians, can we all act like it, please? You three, go check on my wife.” Sartur says.

“Is that not the Soldiers jobs?” asks Garrison, not pleased that he's being asked to do something that a lowly Soldier should be taking care of.

“Ah but you do want our king to be delivered successfully, don't you? Can such an important job be entrusted in the hands of the Soldiers?”

“Well, I suppose not...” says Wise Man Leonardo. The three Wise Men walk out, leaving just Sartur, Zart, and Vincent.

“Good job taking out the trash, Sartur.” says Zart. Him and Vincent are not very fond of those three Wise Men.

“Now, as I was saying, do you really think we have time to wait on your boy to come of age? What if he doesn't even have The Power? What then, do we just pray you one day have another son who does have it? With the state the world is in, can we truly keep waiting on you to have a son with The Power?” asks Vincent, sitting with crossed legs.

“Why do you doubt Sartur so much, Vincent? That damned boy of yours isn't going to be king, period. Get over it!” snarls Zart.

“It's not Sartur that I doubt, it's the reliability of his plan. As we speak now, the world is just getting worse and worse. We're wasting time! We're going to save every Familiar in the world and restore peace to the world, aren't we? We've waited too long!” replies Vincent.

Because Familiars have no choice but to obey their masters, humanity uses them for their own benefit, in cruel, immoral ways. It's like slavery. Vincent always felt like they are wasting time by waiting for Sartur to have a son who has The Power. Sartur's two daughters can speak with Familiars, and the King from two hundred years ago could do the same thing, but nobody else is known to be able to do this, so he calls this ability 'The Power'. Vincent and Sartur both had their first kids around the same time, but Sartur had a girl while Vincent had a boy. On the contrary, Vincent's son can not speak to Familiars, while Sartur's daughter can. Vincent insists that his son should just be crowned king, but Sartur refuses to have a King whom doesn't carry The Power.

“But we can't achieve our goal unplanned, Vincent. It can't be a coincidence that my offspring have the same ability as the King. We need something as powerful as the Basilisk in our hands, and with a King of our own with The Power, perhaps he'll be able to awaken Basilisk, no?” says Sartur, pacing to the side again.

Vincent sighs and shakes his head. “Still, though. This is all in the hands of the roll of the dice. That, I just don't like...” he says, taking out a pair of dice and rolling them, both landing on one.“I've got stuff to do, we can chat more later.” he says, getting up and shutting the door behind him.

Zart stares as Vincent leaves, hand cupped under his chin. “I don't trust him. He's always doubting everything and trying to get that stupid kid of his to be the King. I don't like those three sissies either. Maybe we should've just kept it as me and you only as the Emerald Empire Wise Men.” The Emerald Empire, named after Sartur, his last name being Emerald, is the name of the organization Sartur and Zart created all on their own, by searching high and low for people that they considered good and worthy. It took them twenty eight years, but now they have an entire organization with hundreds of Soldiers, and their own massive castle. Sartur himself braved the Earth, searching for the smartest men in the world, whom are now known as the Emerald Empire Wise Men. With their intelligence all put together, they managed to create all types of advanced technology.

“Strength comes in numbers, Zart. If it was still just me and you like how we started off, we would never have managed to build this castle, would we? Nor would we have so much money.” replies Sartur. With all the advanced technology they managed to create, they sell all sorts of products, which made them filthy rich.

“I'm still amazed the invisibility worked. We have our own, invisible, thirty meter castle! We're bloody geniuses!” Zart says proudly. They made their castle invisible so that they can keep their organization secret. How else would they hide a thirty meter castle?

Sartur opens a dresser and pulls out a chessboard. “While we await the birth of the King, shall we enjoy ourselves to a game of chess, my friend?” he asks. Sartur's wife is pregnant and is expected to give birth within just a few hours. Zart nods, so the two friends engage in a well matched game of chess for about four hours. Sartur has only his King, two Pawns, and one Bishop left, but Zart is down to just his king.

“It's stalemate if you can't checkmate me within twenty moves.” Zart says, moving his King out of check.

“Haha! That is far more than enough time, my dear friend.” laughs Sartur, confident he can win by then. He picks up his Bishop to put Zart's King in check again, but the door swings open violently, and in comes one of the Wise Men, Garrison, panting heavily.

“You bloody fat warthog! Have you forgotten how to knock?!” says Zart, disgusted. Garrison brushes him off.

“Sartur...the King has been born!” exclaims Garrison, still panting, as if he ran a long distance at full speed to bring this news. Sartur and Zart both jump to their feet, ready to go see their newborn King.

“But..there's two other things...” Garrison says, looking from east to west.

“Oh? What might that be?” asks Sartur, curiously. Garrison stares at the floor, as if this is going to be hard to say.

“Spit it out you fat bastard!” shouts Zart, grabbing Garrison by the collar.

“Well, you should see the first thing for yourself, and the second thing...your wife, she..died. The birth of the King killed her.”  


THE EMERALD EMPIRE



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Posted on Sat Mar 07, 2015 4:27 pm

Chapter 9

Nate, six years old at the time, is expressionlessly staring at the ceiling, humming along to that creepy tune that plays in his room. Annie, seven years old at the time, is trying to keep him entertained.

“There must be something here you want to play, Natey!”she says, digging through his toybox.

He doesn't reply, and continues humming the tune, his face void of emotion. It's like he's under some type of spell, cursed by a witch or in a trance. If someone unexpecting this were to come in his room and see this, along with hearing that tune, they would likely be frozen in fear. There's an ominous presence about it that would send chills down any normal person's back.

Eight-year old Connie enters the room, holding a stack of books, which she sets down on the floor in front of Nate.

“What story would you like to hear today, Nate?” she asks.

Nate seems to come out of his trance at the sight of the books. He absolutely loves it when Connie reads books to him.

“A story about a family.” he says.

Connie flinches when she hears this. “A family story? Uhm, I don't think I have any books like that...” she says, looking from left to right, twirling her hair in a nervous manner.

“Then what's this?” asks Nate, grabbing a book out of the center of the stack. On the cover, there's a picture of three kids and two adults. Connie can't comprehend how her brother could tell what the book was about while it was under several other books.

“That? Oh, uh, that book is boring, you won't like it. Maybe you'd like to see the construction book again?” she asks, picking up a book with a picture of a bulldozer on the cover.

“No. You will read this book to me.” he demands.

Connie raises an eyebrow at him. “Who do you think you're talking to like that?”

“I'm the king of the Emerald Empire, aren't I? As the king, I demand that you read this book to me.”

Connie stands, hands on her hips. “How about, with that attitude, I don't read anything to you?”

“Then I'll just read it myself!” he exclaims.

“Hey Natey, maybe you want to play a game of darts instead?” asks Annie, picking up a dart, attempting to throw it at the bullzeye, but misses terribly.

“No, Annie, we already know I'm going to win. I have played against you in darts one hundred and twenty times, and you have never come close to beating me.” he says, as he opens the book. Despite having never been taught how to read, he managed to teach himself, although his reading level is still very low, so he always has Connie read to him instead, since she can read far better than him.

Connie looks as if she's cursing herself in her head. She doesn't want him to read that book because he'll learn that everyone has a mother. He isn't aware that he has, or had a mother, in fact he doesn't even know what a mother is. He only knows of brothers, sisters, and fathers. If he finds out, he's going to onslaught her with a barrage of questions, but she can't let him find out that his own birth killed their mother. His poor little heart would shatter into a million pieces.

She snatches the book out of his hands as soon as he turns the first page, but he seems to have already got a good look. “Connie, what's a 'mo-th-er'?” he says, trying to properly pronounce the word.

Connie sighs. At this point, she doesn't have much choice other than to tell him. The boy is too smart to be easily fooled. “Nate, every child has two parents: a father, and a mother. The father is the man, and the mother is the woman. Understand?”

“No, I don't understand. How does Father and Mother have a child?” he asks curiously.

“I-I don't know, Nate. You must remember that I don't know EVERYTHING.”

“If every child has a Mother, why don't I have one?” he asks immediately, as if he has a thousand questions ready for her, just like she expected he would.

“I...” says Connie, biting her lip, no clue what to tell him. Should she tell him the truth, knowing it will shatter his poor heart? Or should she lie to his face about something like this?

“Connie, he has every right to know.” says Annie, hugging him from behind.

“Right to know...? What have you been hiding from me? TELL ME!” he says, jumping to his feet, kicking the stack of books over.

Connie puts her palm on her forehead in frustration. She simply has to tell him something now, since he now knows that they've been hiding something from him.

“Well, Nate, you see, mother, she was, uhm...killed by a bad person. We've never seen her because she died before we ever got the chance.” lies Connie.

“Connie, you...” says Annie, shocked that her sister just came up with such a convenient lie off the top of her head.

“Shh.” says Connie, covering Annie's mouth with her hand.

Nate says nothing for a while, then his eyes slowly widen with terror. “Mother...killed...by...bad...person.” he repeats several times, robotically. As the realization hits him, he starts frantically pulling at his hair. “Mother...Mother...MOTHER!!!” he yells, throwing a book across the room.

“It's okay, Natey! Even if we don't have a mother, we still have each other, right?” says Annie, hugging him tighter.

“If I could leave this room...oh, if only I could leave this room. Maybe then I would have seen her at least once!” he say, wiping snot off his face with his sleeve.

Connie shakes her head. “No, Nate. She died when you were a baby.”

“Connie, why am I not allowed to leave my room?” he asks.

Connie rolls her eyes. “Really, Nate? This again? I've already told you, it's because father says so.”

“But why?”

“Because he wants to keep you safe?” she replies.

“But Connie, you and Annie are allowed to leave your rooms to come to mine. If keeping me in my room keeps me safe, why is it okay for you two to come to my room while I can't go to yours? Does he not want to keep you guys safe too?” he asks. He was a very persistent child, hard to argue with.

“He has a point, Connie. It's not fair that he's shut in here all day. We at least have the freedom to go to his room as we please.” says Annie.

“See? Annie knows I'm right, so why not let me leave my room?” asks Nate.

“Because it's completely unreasonable. We can't just go against father's orders!” exclaims Connie.

“Don't be so bossy with Natey, sis!” says Annie, taking her brother's side, like she always does when Nate and Connie argue over something.

“You're outnumbered two to one, Connie.” says Nate with a smirk, proud to have Annie's support. “So can we, please?” he asks, making an impossibly cute face.

“Aww, how can you say no to a face like that?” says Annie.

Connie looks like she's reached her boiling point now. “Fine! But if we get caught, don't say I didn't warn you!”

“Yay!” says both Nate and Annie, high fiving each other.

So they open the door, but as soon as they take one step out, they hear a loud beeping noise, and red lights start flashing. They triggered an alarm by leaving his room.

“Annie, Connie, what's going on?” asks Nate, frightened.

“I don't know!” says Connie, covering her ears to try to block out the noise.

“I warned you...” says Connie, shaking in fear. She looks more frightened than Nate and Annie combined.

They then hear a door slam, and footsteps approaching, so they run back into Nate's room, and try to shut the door behind them, but right when it's about to close, the door swings back open with a force that knocks the three kids down. Sartur walks in, and he does not look pleased, at all.

“My dear children, you dare revolt against my orders?” he says,

As he approaches them, they slowly back up in fear. Just like Connie said, they have been caught.

“W-We're sorry, father!” stutters Annie.

Sartur ignores her, stoops down, and strikes Nate in the face with the back of his fist, knocking him several feet back into the wall with a loud thud.

“Nate!” cry Annie and Connie, running over to him.

Sartur continues to approach Nate, not even close to done with him. Connie stands in front of her younger siblings, as if to block her father's way to them.

“Please father, don't hurt him!” she pleads.

“Would you like to suffer your fate first?” asks Sartur, dryly.

“Please, daddy, no! It's not his fault! It was my idea to let him leave his room, he was only listening to me! Annie kept telling me we can't go against your orders, but I wouldn't listen! I'm sorry, father...” she lies, crying.

“That's not true!” says Nate, holding onto his bruised cheek.

“It's okay, you two.” says Connie, looking at them with a weak smile. “You don't have to try to take the blame for me.” she says, even though she's the one taking the blame for them.

“I see...and to think I always thought you were a responsible girl.” says Sartur, grabbing her by the arm, dragging her away, and slamming the door behind him.


“AHH!!!” Annie screams, feeling as if she just woke up from the most life-like nightmare ever. Last she remembers, she and Nate were taking shelter from the storm, then she suddenly felt like she was in a moment of her past from eleven years ago. Why did she relive that moment of her life that she tries hard to forget ever happened? There's no telling what happened to Connie that day, but Annie doesn't think it could have been anything good, and she thinks it was all her fault. If she hadn't agreed with the idea of Nate leaving his room, then Connie wouldn't have felt like she had to let him try to leave, and nothing would have happened to her and Nate.

Annie drops to her knees, covering her face, and crying with regret. Then, she hears a familiar voice calling her name.

“Annie...” the voice says, in a weird, distorted voice.

She looks up, and sees a girl in a black hood. Despite the hood covering her eyes, Annie can tell it's Connie, by her blonde hair.

“Connie?! How did you find me? Are you okay?”

“Am...I...ok? I don't know, am I?” repeats Connie, staring at the ground, shaking her head.

“Connie, what's wrong with your voice?”

Connie looks up. “NO! I'm not ok!” she shouts, with a psychotic look in her eyes, and a crazy smile on her face.

Annie jumps back, startled, stunned speechless. “Connie...” is all she can say.

“That right, Annie. I...finally...realized...I'm not okay!” Each word came out slowly, with pauses inbetween each syl;able.

“W-What happened?” asks Annie.

“Haha! What happened? Oh, I don't know, You tell me!”

“Connie...” once again, this is all Annie can say.

“You LEFT ME FOR DEAD, THAT IS WHAT HAPPENED!!!” shouts Connie, louder than Annie's ever heard her raise her voice before.

“I'm sorry...I didn't mean...”

“You disobeyed me once again. Why? Why can't you ever listen? How bloody hard can it be to just do what I say for once?!”

Annie never would've imagined what happens next. She grabs her eyeball, and literally yanks it right out her eye socket. She throws her on eyeball to the ground, and stomps on it, splattering blood everywhere.

“Oh my god!!!” screams Annie, backing up.

“I get it. You don't care about me. All I ever do is protect you and Nate, but I never get any love back! You'll never understand eveverything I've been through protecting you, and in return, I can't even get obedient little siblings?!” This time, she rips off her own nose, leaving a bloody hole where it used to be.

“I'm sorry...I'm sorry...I'm sorry...” repeats Annie, so scared she wets herself.

“No you're not! Don't lie to me! You never cared. You love Nate and yourself only! I was never OK, never! Where was the appreciation for everything I do for you?” Now she starts ripping off her toes, one by one.

“Connie, stop!!!”

“You and Nate were always so close. I always envied that about you two. You had such a close relationship with each other, but not me! Why? WHY?! I always felt terrible because of this. Yet, despite everything, I continued protecting you two, because that's what a big sister does, and I loved you both!” She rips off both her feet now, but is somehow still standing.

“Connie, please stop...”

“You left me alone in the desert by myself! I could've died and you'd never know! That proves you don't care and never have!” She pulls out a chainsaw, cutting off both her legs. Instead of collapsing to the ground, she seems to be levitating.

“But you know what? Maybe it would be better if I had died! I've finally opened up my eyes! I've realized how I can be okay! I'll just die! Whatever the afterlife has in store for me has to be better than this pile of shit life I have on earth. You left me for dead, Annie, now watch me die!” she says, raising the chainsaw.

“NO, CONNIE, DON'T! I don't want you to die...” cries Annie.

Right when Connie's about to cut off her own head, Annie feels someone grab her hand, and start running, dragging her along.

“It's about time I found you! Where's Nate? We need to find him quickly!” says Connie.

Annie is confused. She just saw Connie destroying her own body, and now she's suddenly here in one piece, looking for Nate? What's going on? How can there be two Connie's? She yanks her hand away from Connie, trying to get a good look at her.

“Connie...is it really you?”

“Yes, it's me! Look, I don't know what that demon showed you or said to you, but pretend it never happened, okay?”

Annie gasps. “Y-You mean that was one of the demons...?” she glances behind her, and sees that what was once a hooded, disfigured Connie is now a floating coat with a hood that would be covering it's face if it had one, which seems to lack a body. There's two of them, floating after the girls slowly.

“Yeah, and they are responsible for the sandstorm. When I first saw one, it felt as if I had been sucked into the past, but I managed to break free, and the sandstorm seemed to weaken. Then when I got you away from that thing just now, it weakened again. If we save Nate, the storm should go away.” explains Connie.

“Wait, then that means Natey is all by himself, being shown horrible things by a demon! We have to find him!” exclaims Annie.

Connie rolls her eyes. “Yes, that's what I said just a minute ago. Where is he?”

Annie points at the construction machine. “He should still be in there, taking shelter from the storm with Shadow.”

So they start running back there to find Nate, but after a while of running, they notice that the two demons stopped following them and started floating off in another direction.

“Huh? I wonder what made them stop chasing us.” says Connie.

“Maybe they realized we're too fast for them.” replies Annie.

Then it hits her. “Of course! They're going after Nate instead now! Looks like we'll be the ones chasing them, instead of them chasing us this time!” says Connie, grabbing Annie's hand, and taking off after the demons.



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Posted on Sun Mar 08, 2015 2:27 am

Demons are always fucking with the heads.



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Posted on Fri Mar 13, 2015 4:10 pm

A bit late (like usual >.>) but here's ch10. This ones a bit of an info dumper

Chapter 10



The girls were expecting the Demons to be psychologically assaulting Nate like they had done to them, however, Nate is standing with his fists balled, staring in fear and confusion at the three Demons. They are standing together in a triangle, like a football team huddled up to talk strategy.

“Hey, listen to me! What's going on? Where did she go? Where is she?!!!” he yells, throwing a dagger in frustration, which goes straight through them, as if they aren't really there.

“This is bizarre...no humans have ever managed to break through our hallucinations before...” says one of the Demons.

The second Demon nods in agreement. “Greed, I think we should retreat. They could be dangerous to us.”

“Retreat from humans...? Pathetic! We're dying anyway, what does it matter if they are dangerous?” replies the third Demon, the one called Greed. The three Demons discuss it over with each other for a while, completely ignoring Nate, then they float off somewhere.

“Get back here! I need to know where she is! I have to exterminate her!!!” yells Nate, chasing after them, but when they quickly vanished from his range of sight, he dropped to his knees. “Annie...Connie...please come back. Nothing's going to be the same without you...” he sniffles.

Connie crosses her arms. “Nate still thinks whatever the Demons showed him was real.”

Annie walks over to him, tapping his shoulder from behind. “Boo!”

“Ahh!” he screams, shocked, then sees that it's Annie. “A-Annie...? Is it really you?” he asks, touching her to confirm that she's real.

“The one and only.” she replies with a smile. Nate hugs her fiercely, bawling his eyes out. “I-I thought...that you were dead!!!” he cries. She wraps her arms around him for comfort. “It's okay, Natey, we're still here, and will never leave your side.”

The girls explain everything to their brother, and Connie concludes that the giant hole in the ground must be the Demons lair, since that's where they floated off too. When she tells Annie and Nate that that's where they must go, Nate shakes his head in refusal.

“No...you saw what those Demons are capable of. I don't want to see you two hurt again.” he says.

“We don't really have a choice, Nate. We've made it this far, we can't turn back now. Imagine how displeased Father would be.” replies Connie.

“Well, Father will just have to accept the fact that we didn't do it!” shouts Nate. “Annie, you think we should turn back too, right?”

Normally, Annie would take Nate's side when him and Connie disagree about something, but after all the things that she had thought Connie was saying not too long ago, she still feels guilty. She knows it was a hallucination, but even still, what if Connie really does feel that way? “No, Nate, we're going to keep going and that's final. Didn't you see how they floated off with their tails between their legs? They're scared of us! We have nothing to run from.”

“Annie...?” says Nate, shocked to not have her on his side for once. This is the first time he can ever remember this happening. Connie also seems surprised by this.

Croakie hops out of Annie's pocket. “Is it just me, or are we still missing someone? The stupid mutt is nowhere in sight!”

“Sh-Shadow?” says Nate, looking around. “Oh no! I left Shadow all by himself! We have to go get him!”

While they're about to start looking for Shadow, they all hear a familiar bark coming their way. Nate turns around, and immediately, Shadow jumps in his arms, licking his face.

“Nate, I found you!” says Shadow, wagging his tail from side to side, tongue hanging out of his mouth.

“Shadow! I'm so sorry for leaving you all alone for so long.” apologizes Nate, hugging Shadow tight.

“No, I'm sorry for not following you. I made an oath to protect the ones I love, not be protected by them, and yet I let you go by yourself!” apologizes Shadow.

The two of them apologize back and forth at least a hundred times. Annie and Connie wait for the two best friends to be done with their apologies, but it seems like they'll never stop.

“Uhm, I think you both apologized enough...” says Annie, scratching the back of her head.

“I hate to address the elephant in the room, but Annie, why are your clothes wet?” asks Connie.

“Uh...” says Annie, blushing as she remembers that she wet herself in fear while hallucinating. “Do I really have to answer that?”

Conne sighs. “You've successfully managed to ruin your clothes twice in one day. I told you if it happens again, then it's on you, so you'll have to figure something out yourself.”

“A-anyway, we should really get a move on right away. It's kinda spooky just standing here in the dark.” replies Annie.

After taking a water break, the group begins walking for yet another half hour, when Annie feels something crack under her foot. She looks under her shoe, and screams at what she sees.

“Annie? What's wrong?” asks Connie.

“There's a...ah, uhm...human shaped monster!” says Annie, hiding behind her sister.

Connie shines her flashlight on it. “That's not a monster, it's just a skeleton.” she says, and explains to her what a skeleton is.

“Oh, so this is actually a dead person with no skin or muscle? But, why is there a dead guy right here?!” asks Annie.

“I don't know, let's just keep going.”

Once they make it to the hole, they realize just how deep it is. You could fit an entire village down there, and they can't even see the bottom, if it actually has one.

“Did these machines really dig this hole? Imagine how long that must've took.” says Nate.

“And why do they have the Emerald Empire insignia on them?” asks Annie.

“Well, Father says he's been here before, so they must belong to him. Considering that he made this map himself, perhaps he built the machines and dug this hole as well.” explains Connie.

“In that case, couldn't he have let us know about this before, and gave us a way to get down there?” says Annie.

Nate shines his flashlight at something. “Oh look, there's a staircase.”

“That's quite convenient.” says Shadow.

As they walk down the staircase, they have to pinch their noses to block out the rotten stench of decay. Skulls are scattered about here and there, some white and clean with a few cracks, others fresh with meat still rotting from the bones. The deeper down they get, the worse the smell gets, with the stench of blood now mixed in with the rot and decay, forcing them to nearly gag from the putrid smell. The smell is so horrid, they think that they're going to be sick, but they keep on going, occasionally having to duck under cobwebs. Hissing and slithering can be heard coming their way, making Annie cling onto Nate in fear, but it was just a snake Familiar passing by.

Annie accidently steps on one of the skulls, and much to her shock, it makes a soft groaning sound. Startled, she looks down and shines her flashlight on it, and sees that it's no skull, it's a male human body that seems to be all skin and bone. The body looks dead, but it suddenly springs to it's feet, grabbing Annie by her shoulders. It mutters something that can't be comprehended, then starts coughing so violently, it just might cough it's lungs out.
Annie screams, thinking she's going to be eaten by a zombie, but Connie grabs it by the head, repeatedly bashing it against the wall. Every time the head hits the wall, they can hear it's bones cracking and see blood dripping down from the forehead. Connie then mercilessly tosses the body down to the bottom of the pit. Nate and Annie are shocked at what just happned, having just seen their sister kill someone, but she tells them that he was dying anyway.

At the bottom, there are countless skulls all over the floor, along with other broken bones as well as a few complete skelletons leaning against the wall with maggots crawling out of the eye sockets. It was as if people came all the way down here just to sit there until they rot to death. Six Demons float motionlessly above the ground, but when Connie shines her flashlight on them, they scurry about like bats.

“These are the humans I spoke of, Pride.” says one of them.

“They willingly came all the way down here? This is interesting, very interesting...” says another Demon. The six of them circle around Nate and his sisters, like hyenas about to devour their lunch.

“Nate, say something...” whispers Connie.

“Who are you?! What are you doing here?” asks the Demon called Pride.

“I...I am Nate Emerald, king of the Emerald Empire!” replies Nate. “Please, do not be afraid, we come in peace!”

The Demons stop moving when they hear Nate respond to Pride. “Is that human communicating with us?!”

“Yes, I know this may come as a shock to you, but me and my sisters here are capable of speaking with Familiars, and apparently, Demons as well. We came here only to talk to you.”

“Emerald Empire...so it was YOU who dug up our home?” asks Pride.

“It wasn't us, it was our father! Hate him instead!' exclaims Annie.

“You say you've come to talk, have you? What do you want to talk to a bunch of Demons about?” asks one of the Demons.

“We would like to recruit you to our Empire. The Emerald Empire seeks to save all Familiars and restore peace and color to this world, and we need as many allies as we can get.”

“I'm afraid that is of no concern to us.” replies Pride.

Nate, not sure what else to say, turns to Connie. “I tried.”

“Well then, 'Pride', I heard one of your friends say that you guys are dying. I didn't know coats could die, what's this about? We also wish to know the truth behind you Demons. Who are you? Why do you exist in our world? Nobody even knows for certain that you exist, most people think you're just a myth.” says Connie.

“Who are we? We are the Seven Sin Demons!” exclaims Pride. “Meet, Lust, Gluttony, Greed, Sloth, Envy, and of course, Pride!”

“Seven? But there's only six of you.” says Annie, counting them again to be sure.

Pride makes a noise that sounds a lot like a sigh. “Originally, there were seven of us, but Wrath has found itself a soul already. Oh how we await the day that we shall as well...”

“Found a soul? What do you mean by that?” asks Nate.

“We Demons have one purpose here on earth, and that purpose is to keep the worlds sins under balance. Whenever someone commits a sinful act, one of us has to bear the pain of their actions. We have been here doing our job since the creation of humanity, but after so many years, the pain has become too much, and our existence is starting to fade away. If that happens, then the sins of the world will no longer be under balance, and...that is the worst thing that can happen.” explains Pride.

“That's terrible...is there any way we can help you?” asks Nate, feeling pity for the Demons.

“The only way for us to be saved is by finding a host, like Wrath did. By host I mean someone, a human, with tremendous sin flowing through them. For example, I need a host full of pride. It can't be just anyone, it has to be the perfect amount of sin, but throughout all these years, only Wrath has ever found it's perfect host. Once we find our host, we become part of their soul, and continue to live on, keeping sin under balance.”

“How do you know when you've found your perfect host?” asks Nate.

“We can taste it, hear it, feel it, just like we always feel the sins, except when it's coming from the perfect host, it will be an overwhelming feeling, unlike any other. Such a thing can not be explained to mere humans, you can not comprehend it. But are you really human? You should not be able to hear us, nor see us. We don't even physically exist, we are astral beings.”

“Am I really human? Heh, I wonder that myself sometimes.” replies Nate. If he is truly human or not is a question he asks himself all the time.

“Is there anything else you mysterious creatures have to ask me?” asks Pride.

“Yes, actually, there is. Why did you guys make us hallucinate like that? First you showed us painful memories from our past, then stuff that has never happened before. What was the purpose of that? I can't imagine you just get kicks out of psychologically torturing people.” says Connie.

“That is our way of trying to force out the sins deep within people. We could fade out of existence at any moment, so we're willing to do whatever it takes to find our hosts. Unfortunately, as you can see, it doesn't succeed, and our targets always end up dead. You're the first survivors, congratulations.”

Connie looks down, and realizes that all those skulls belong to all the people that died here, rumored to have been cursed by the Demons.

“I don't think we have anything further to explain to you, so be gone now.” says Pride, and the Demons all seem to vanish simultaneously.

“Well that was a huge waste of time! They didn't even join us!” complains Annie.

“It wasn't a total waste, we did learn a lot today. Perhaps this information will help us in the future.” replies Connie.

“It'll be morning by the time we get back though...” says Nate, staring at up at the sky.

When they start climbing the massive staircase out of the hole, the Demons appear again, watching them take their leave. “Quite peculiar...in all our years, we have never met people like them.”

“Do you think that perhaps they could be the ones we need?” asks Lust.

“No, if they were then we wouldn't still be here suffering. We'll just have to keep waiting, and pray.” says Pride, its coat flowing majestically with the wind.



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Posted on Sat Mar 14, 2015 1:24 am

The sinful demons... I like it.



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Posted on Sat Mar 14, 2015 10:52 am

Finished Chapter 11...early?!!! It's alot shorter than I had originally planned, but this was such a perfect place to end a chapter I decided to just use the rest of the chapter as chapter 12. Plus I achieved my goal with the chapter, so I think it's long enough.

Chapter 11

Nate stands in the Throne Room of his castle, dressed in his king robes, cloak and crown, gazing out the window. The shade of his hair seems to have darkened, and his once bright eyes are now void of color. His body shakes and quivers, as if enduring an unimaginable deal of pain. To the sides of his throne sit Annie and Connie, their eyes downcast and their faces void of expression and emotion. They look like two puppets, left alone to collect dust while they await the day their master shall return and pull their strings once again.

The door opens with a creak, and in comes Soldier Maya. “Lord Nate, it's time. Hundreds of people are outside waiting for you to declare the new world order.”

“Go away, Soldier, can you not see that I am busy?” replies Nate without turning around, no emotion in his voice.

“But Lord Nate, you've been standing in that exact spot for three weeks. The whole world is in chaos and confusion right now, you're the only one that can save it, my Lord. Aren't you satisfied that you've finally become the ruler of the entire world?”

“Satisfied...? I wish I knew the answer to that question. All this pain I live with, I've grown so used to it I don't even notice it anymore. In fact, I no longer feel anything at all, it's as if I'm no longer human.”

“My Lord, please don't say that...”

“IT'S TRUE!!!” Nate suddenly shouts, turning around to face her. “Don't believe me? Watch this!” he says, picking up a knife and stabbing it right through his throat, piercing right through the back of his neck. He then yanks it out, tearing through his skin and flesh even more. The hole in his throat seeps out blood, staining his royal clothes. He doesn't react in the slightest, as if feeling no pain and not caring about the blood.

“Lord Nate!!!” cries Maya.

“Take a look at Annie and Connie. I did this to them, I did!!! No human could do such a thing to his own sisters! I'm no human, I'm no Familiar, I...I'm a MONSTER!!!” he yells at the top of his lungs, breathing hard. “ANNIE, CONNIE!!! PLEASE COME BACK!!! I'M NOT WHOLE WITHOUT YOU!!!” he yells at the top of his lungs, his voice distorted from the gaping hole, coughing up blood as he yells, sprinkles of it landing on Maya's face.

Nate wakes up, and looks around him, seeing that he's back in their hotel room. After he and his sisters got back from the desert, they returned to the hotel, where they fell asleep the second they laid down. After everything they went through, their bodies as well as their minds were completely exhausted, and they deserved a good rest. Nate takes a look out the window, and sees that it's still dark out, the only light inside coming from the moon.

“What type of dream was that...?” he asks himself, massaging his eyes. Not wanting to go back to sleep after the dream he just had, he picks up a bottle of water, and gulps most of it down, splashing the rest over his face so that he stays awake. Having just woke up, he didn't notice it at first, but he can hear someone crying softly. Thinking it's Annie, he walks over to her bed, but she's fast asleep, cuddling Croakie.

“Nate, what are you doing out of bed? You had a long day and need to rest.” he hears Connie ask him. He turns towards her bed, and notices her sitting on her bed, wide awake, arms wrapped firmly around her knees.

“Oh, I woke up and don't really feel like going back to sleep. I had an unusual dream.” he says, and sits on her bed with her, noticing streaks of moisture on her cheeks being reflected by the dim moonlight, and her eyes slightly puffy, with bags underneath.

“Are you...crying?” Nate asks, tilting his head to get a better look at her face, but failing to see her clearly with how dark it is, the only light coming from the moon. He has never seen her cry before, so this is quite a surprise to him. After everything he's seen happen to her before without her shedding a single tear, it unnerves him to imagine what could possibly make her cry.

“Huh? Haha, no! Don't be silly Nate, of course I wasn't crying!” she laughs as if her brother was joking. Nate doesn't say anything, certain that he had heard her crying. “What was this dream you had, if you don't mind me asking?”

“Most of it's a blur now, but I remember that I was there, and you, and Annie. I had become the world's new ruler, but...something just wasn't right. It was like you two had no souls, and I said that I had done it to you. How could I do such a thing...?” he asks, staring at the palm of his hand.

“I wouldn't worry about that, Nate, it was just a bad dream. You're so young and you've been through so much today, it's only natural that you'd be having bad dreams.”

Like Connie, Nate sits with his arms wrapped around his knees. “To tell you the truth, I'm scared. It's my destiny to rule the whole world, but I don't know much about this world to begin with. Father says this world is dangerous. What if something ends up happening to you and Annie, like in my dream? I can't imagine life without you two. This is going to sound weird, but you two make me who I am. You're more important than half of me, it's like you're a part of me.”

Connie hugs her brother tight. “Yeah, it must be really scary being burdened with such a huge destiny while being thrown into the world for the first time in your life. I think I know how you feel...you and Annie are very important to me as well. I wouldn't know what to do if I ever lost you two either. But we're not caged birds anymore, Nate, we're now eagles, ready to take flight and show this world that we are the masters of the sky!” she says, patting his back with an encouraging smile.

Nate smiles back at her, wrapping his arms around her, and resting his head on her shoulder. They sit like this silently for a while, until Nate breaks the silence. “So, how come you're not sleep? Did you have a bad dream too?” he asks.

Connie bites her lip. “...No, I...I just wasn't sleepy.” she says, staring down.

Nate notices something on her bed through the corner of his eye, and picks it up. “Huh? This is one of my daggers? Why do you have this?” he asks, blood dripping off of it.

“Oh, uhm...sorry to take it without asking, but, I...got a little hungry, so I used it to cut an apple.” she says, twirling her hair between her fingers and looking from side to side suspiciously.

“But apples don't have blood.”

“Well it's pretty dark right now, so I couldn't see what I was doing, and cut my finger by accident.”

“Huh. It's not like you to make a mistake like that, normally it would be Annie doing something so silly.” says Nate with a laugh.

Connie rolls her eyes. “Anyway, you need to go back to bed. There's no telling what tomorrow has in store for us, so you'll need your energy.”

Nate doesn't say anything, and rocks back and forth, biting his nails. “Do you ever wonder why we're different from regular people? How come we can see Demons and speak with Familiars, but nobody else can?”

“Nate, some things we just shouldn't worry about. Regardless of why or how, we are who we are, and nothing's going to change it.”

“Are we really even human? We're certainly not Familiars, so if we're not human, what are we? Aliens from another planet that somehow landed on earth?”

Connie would laugh about the alien thing, but she knows how serious her brother is, and knows stuff like this is always on his mind. “What I see in you is the king of a whole empire, the future ruler of the world, and the best brother in the world. I know Mother would be proud of you for who you are, human or not.” she says, hugging him tighter. He gazes out the window, staring intently at the stars, gripping his necklace tight.

“Oh hey, I just remembered something I've read before. They say that if you make a wish upon a star before bed, it's light will shine within you, scaring away the evil creatures that give us nightmares.” says Connie, gazing out the window with him.

“Huh? How can I make a wish on something that's so far away? Can I pull the stars out of the sky...?” asks the confused Nate.

Connie can't help but giggle at this. “No, you just stare at the stars like you're doing now, and make a wish.”

Nate closes his eyes, wisely deciding on his wish, then opens them. “I wish that the three of us will be together forever.” He patiently waits for something to happen, but raises his eyebrow when it doesn't. “Nothing's happening, so how will I know if my wish came true or not?”

“Only time will tell. Now, you really need to get back to sleep.”

“Can I sleep with you tonight? I know I have the light of the star within me now, but...” he says, rocking back and forth while biting his nails again, clearly afraid of having another nightmare.

“Alright, I suppose that will be okay, if it will help you sleep.” says Connie, not mentioning the fact that she's more comfortable with him by her side as well. “Goodnight, my little eagle.” she says, as the two of them lay down, and slowly drift asleep.



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Posted on Sun Mar 15, 2015 2:41 am

Silly Natey thought he could pull the stars out of the sky. x3



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Posted on Fri Mar 20, 2015 11:31 am

Nate's innocence can tend to be a bit funny XD

Ch12 has been done for a while but didn't get around to proofreading it till now

Chapter 12


Connie wakes up to the bright sunlight beaming down on her through the window, and her arms wrapped around Nate, whom smiles peacefully in his sleep. The innocent look on his face as he softly snores brings a smile to her face. The familiar scent of French toast and syrup wafts by her nose, and she notices Annie sitting on her bed enjoying herself to a plate of French toast with eggs and fruit salad.

“Annie...? Where did you get that food from?” she asks, as she gets out of bed.

“Oh, morning Connie! Guess what? It turns out that with the press of a button, we can tell these hotel people to bring us food! It's like how our Soldiers would bring us food at the castle, except we can tell them when to do it! Though they do ask for money, but we have so much more than they want.” replies Annie, as she feeds Croakie some of her food.

“What? Annie, you can't just do stuff like that by yourself. Wait, where did you get those clothes from?” asks Connie, noticing the change in her sister's clothes.

“I went out and brought some more, duh. There were soo many cute clothes I wanted, but I knew you'd have a million things to say if I got a lot.” replies Annie, rolling her eyes.

Connie pulls her sister off the bed by her. “Annie, you know better than to just go out on your own like that! What if something had happened to you?”

“Ow ow ow!!! Are you trying to rip my ear off?! That really hurts, ow!!!” complains Annie, her whining making Connie let go with a sigh.

“You're so hard headed, I sometimes think your head is made out of steel.” says Connie, jokingly knocking on her sister's head. “Ouch, your head is so hard it crushed my knuckles!” she jokes, kissing her knuckles as if she really broke them.

Annie giggles, surprised to see her serious sister being silly. “Well, I was going to wake you up before I did anything, plus I did get food for you and Nate as well, but oh my god, you two were so cute together!!! Sis, I didn't know you had a cute side!”

Connie blushes at the realization that Annie saw her and Nate sleeping together while cuddling each other. “T-That...Nate had a bad dream and wanted to sleep with me because he was scared, that is all.”

Annie places her hands on her knees, and looks up at her sister, tilting her head. “Are you blushing? Oh my god, you are so cute! Why can't you always be cute like this instead of mean and bossy?”

“I'm not mean, and I'm not bossy...I'm smart and cautious, like you should be, you airhead.”

“Are too!” says Annie, sticking her tongue out. Just then, a loud ringing noise starts coming from Connie's pocket, and she takes her phone out and notices their father calling her.

“I'll be right back, wake Nate and Shadow up.” says Connie, going in the bathroom to answer her phone.

So Annie jumps on the bed with Nate and starts bouncing on it. “Wakey wakey, Natey Natey!”

Shadow crawls from under the bed with an exaggerated yawn. “Must you always be so aggressive when you wake him up?” he asks.

“Natey is hard to wake up, this is the only way. Besides, I'm sure he likes it.” she says, as she continues trying to wake her brother up.

After a while, Nate's eyes slowly open. “Get. Off. Of. Me.” he says.

“Natey, you're awake!” exclaims Annie, clapping her hands.

“I said get off!” he says, shoving her off of him, to the amusement of Croakie and Shadow. “Some things never change.” they both say while laughing.

“Where's Connie?” asks Nate, having expected her to still be with him.

“She went in the bathroom, but oh my god Nate, you've gotta see this!” says Annie, showing him a picture she took with her phone of him and Connie cuddling in their sleep. “Isn't she just soo adorable? This is so unlike her!”

Nate scratches his chin, remembering how Connie seemed last night. “Come to think of it, she did seem...different last night. Promise not to tell her what I'm about to tell you, okay?” he says, and Annie nods, so he tells her what happened last night.

“Hmm, so she cut her finger while trying to slice an apple? You're right, she isn't normally so silly, and she's never so cute either!”

They talk about it while they eat their breakfast, until Connie comes out the bathroom, and starts messing around with the TV.

“Eh? Connie, what are you doing? I thought we weren't allowed to use those strange pieces of technology?” asks Nate.

“Father says that there's something important he wants us to see, and to turn this thing to channel 7.” says Connie.

When she gets it on and finds the right channel, they see their father standing before a huge crowd of people, surrounded by Soldiers holding up flags with the Emerald Empire insignia on it.

“Father is trapped inside this square thingy! Who put him in there?” says Annie, shaking the TV as if trying to get him out.

“Sit your butt down and just watch.” says Connie, slapping the back of her head. The three of them sit and watch silently.

Sartur slowly paces from side to side, then clears his throat and begins his speech. “Greetings citizens of this Cinereo Mundi. I am Sartur, and I am here on behalf of the Emerald Empire.”

The crowd looks confused. “Huh? Cinereo Mundi?” asks a citizen. “Who's ever heard of anything called 'Emerald Empire?'” asks another confused citizen.

“Ladies and gentlemen, I bear great news that must be shared with the whole world. Our king has begun his quest to save us all!” exclaims Sartur, bringing about more confusion. “After the Convertion struck, our world was left in ruin! Take a good look around you, what do you see?” The citizens look around, trying to understand what Sartur is talking about, but they still seem confused.

“Want to know what I don't see? I don't see any color in these poor living creatures! I see Familiars, forced to obey our selfish desires. Can you all not see the sadness buried deep within their hearts?” he asks.

“Oh, it's just another one of those stupid Convertion believers.” says one of the citizens. “Yeah, how does anybody believe such a dumb story? Our world was never ruled by this made up king, and there is no such thing as a Basilisk!” says another citizen.

“Hey, you can't say that! The story is true, true I tell you! If you don't believe, then the Demons will curse you, like they do to all nonbelievers!!!” says another citizen in the crowd, this one seeming to agree with Sartur. The crowd erupts into a huge argument, some of the citizens beginning to physically assault each other as well as verbally.

Sartur, ignoring the chaos he brought about, gives a long speech explaining the tale of the king, basilisk, and the Convertion, then gets back to his original point. “But fear not, fellow citizens! We, the Emerald Empire are ruled by the new king, and he has finally set out on his journey to change everything and restore color to this world!”

“New king? What are you talking about, old man?!” asks a citizen, approaching Sartur with balled fists, but he's thrown back into the crowd by Soldier Andrew.

“Yes! King Emerald has set out on a quest to awaken Basilisk, and create a new world order! Our king has already discovered the truth behind the Demons of the Desert. In fact, he's even found out that their true identity is The Sin Demons: Lust, Gluttony, Greed, Sloth, Wrath, Envy, and Pride.” Sartur pauses, pacing from side to side again, then continues.

“These seven Demons have been enduring a great deal of pain since the beginning of mankind, and it is all because of our sins! Every time we commit a sinful act, they are afflicted with unbearable pain, and we were not even aware of this due to our own ignorance! Now, because we have been full of so many sins for oh so long, their existence is fading away. And if that happens...I am afraid that the world will end.”

The crowd is stunned in silence when he mentions the end of the world, completely unexpecting this. “The end of the world?! I've heard many crazy made up stories about these nonexistent Demons, but this one is just too crazy!” says one of them, only to create even more chaos and confusion amongst the crowd.

“Everybody, please look at what you're doing! You're letting sin consume you even now! It is acts like this that will bring about the destruction of us all! Do not let sin overcome you, you must overtake sin! We are far too powerful of an existence to be defeated by something as petty as sin! Every man and every woman, let us begin taming our sins by holding one another's hand, and pray. Pray for our savior, King Emerald, pray for each other, pray for the Demons.” says Sartur, then he and the Emerald Empire soldiers stand hand in hand, with their eyes closed as if praying. Some of the citizens follow his advice, while some remain in chaos.

“Ladies and gentlemen, I bid you farewell for today. Thank you for listening to this important message. All hail the king!” says Sartur after he's finished, then he walks away, with the Soldiers still surrounded around him, as if for protection.

“Man, that guy is a total wackjob...just another psycho cult leader.” says one of the citizens, most of them agreeing, but some believing in Sartur, thinking that a savior truly has arrived.

When the chaos fades away, the crowd goes back to whatever they were doing before, as if nothing even happening. All except one girl dressed in black, whom laughs maniacally. “Hahaha!!! The fun is only just beginning, 'King Emerald!'” she says, but Nate and his sisters do not see this, as Connie already turned the TV off.

“So the whole world knows of my destiny now...” says Nate, his eyes closed and tapping his foot while petting Shadow, deep in thought. He noticed that his father left out quite a bit of information in his speech, but doesn't mention it because he figures it's probably because those people wouldn't listen anyway.

“I didn't know that there were people who didn't believe in the Convertion. I thought it was a historical fact. Do you know about this, Connie?” asks Annie.

“No, I was under the same assumption as you. Could the Convertion truly just be a myth?” says Connie.

“Of course not!” exclaims Nate, rising to his feet. “Look at this world, do you really think it's always been like this?! Are you doubting the truth behind my destiny?! This destiny of mine coming true is the one wish Mother had before she died, and you mean to doubt it?!!!” he asks, suddenly furious, having another one of his mood swings, which are often triggered by slightest statements or situations.

“Nate, that's not what I...”

“Shut up, just shut up!!! I swore to myself that I would rule the world like Father says, for Mother's sake! This is what Mother wanted, how can you possibly deny this?!!! I am going to rule the world, and everybody will kneel before me, even you!!!” he yells, grabbing the remote to the TV and throwing it at the wall, then storming into the bathroom.

There's an awkward silence in the room, everybody trying to go about as if that didn't just happen while waiting for Nate to calm down, but after he's been in there for almost an hour, Annie can't it anymore. “Someone has to talk to him.” she says.

“You do it, he likes you better anyway.” replies Connie.

“Maybe that's because I'm nice, I'm not bossy, and I don't say things that are obviously going to break him. You know how unstable he can be.”

“But, I was just...” says Connie, the tears building up in her eyes trying to rain down, but Annie ignores her, and walks to the bathroom, knocking on the door.

“Natey, you okay?” she says, putting her ear on the door and can hear Nate crying.

“Go away!” he says.

Annie sighs. “Natey, I'm coming in.” she says, and opens the door, shutting it behind her. Nate is standing, gripping the sink tightly, his hands shaking uncontrollably as his tears drop. “It's not fair...it's just not fair.” he says.

Annie hugs him from behind the way she always does, and doesn't say anything, letting him get his feelings off his chest.

“Why? Why did someone have to kill Mother? It's just not fair...there are so many people in the world who don't lose their Mother before even getting to see her face, and yet we had to be amongst the few that this happened too?! The dice decided to land on two for us, of all families in the world?!” he says.

“I know how you feel, Natey, but there isn't anything we can do about it. We just need to stay strong through it all no matter what.” says Annie, holding his shaking hands in hers.

“Stay strong...stay strong.” he says, gripping his necklace tightly.

“Now come on Natey, our journey is just beginning! But you can't continue your journey with your hair still a mess! Let me brush it for you!” she says, picking up a hairbrush.

“Huh? No! I've told you, I can do it myself! I'm a king, not a little kid!”

“But you're still my little brother, and you always will be. Remember that, little Natey.”

Nate eventually gives up on resisting his sister, letting her brush his hair for him, like always. Every morning, she tries to brush his hair for him, but he'll resist for a bit, then give in, letting her do it for him.

“Hey, Annie, staying strong is what Mother would want, right?” he asks while she brushes his hair.

“Yep! She'd want us to stay strong through wind, through rain, through sand, and even fire!”

Just then Nate can suddenly smell something peculiar that he's never smelt before. “Do you smell that?”

There's then banging on the bathroom door. “Annie, Nate! The building has caught on fire, we need to get out of here immediately!!!” exclaims Connie.

“Uhm...maybe I shouldn't have said fire?” says Annie, scratching the back of her head as the exit they bathroom.

The room is suddenly blazing hot, making their foreheads drip with sweat. They can hear people screaming and running about frantically, as well as the roaring of flames, and the smell of smoke making them cough. Connie suggests they try to exit through the window, but finds that the flames are rapidly rising, so if they try that, they'll quickly be torched. As soon as they open the door, they are greeted by even more intense heat, and a wall of fire blocking their way to the elevator, as well as the stairs. The only door that isn't blocked by flames just happens to be locked, leaving them trapped like rats in a maze.

“What are we going to do now?” asks Annie, covering her mouth with her arm to block out the smoke, but still breathes it in, making her cough violently, as burning pieces of the ceiling break off and fall, creating holes in the floor and nearly dropping onto them sometimes.

“There has to be a way out...there just has too!” says Connie, but she can't think of anything.

“No, we can't die here...” says Nate, looking around for something, anything to help them escape. He's the king of an entire empire, and the future ruler of the whole word, there's no way his journey can end here! His mother is counting on him even in death, he knows it. Then he remembers during the feast on his birthday, when he threw those darts at the candles how they put out the flames. He reaches into his pocket, grabbing as many daggers as he can fit in one hand, and throws them all at the wall of fire blocking the emergency exit. The fire vanishes, as if he had poured a bucket of water over it. “Alright everybody, we can get out of her now, let's go!”

“Nate, you're a genius!” says Connie, with a hoarse voice from how raw her throat is. They all run towards the exit, and manage to make it outside safely, collapsing as soon as they get far enough away from the burning building, feeling like they are going to pass out.

“We made it...thank you, Father.” says Nate, holding one of his daggers up with pride. While they sit on the ground in silence, trying to regain their energy, they hear a loud siren, and see a firetruck rushing over to the scene. The firefighters try their best to put out the fire, but they don't seem to be making any progress, which makes Nate even more astonished that his daggers could put out the fire, even if only just one wall. The entire building is completely torched, and Nate can't imagine anybody else managing to get out of there alive. Then a crying little girl tugs on one of the firefighter's coats, trying to get his attention.

“Sir, my mom is still in there! You have to save her!”

“I'm sorry kid, but there's no way we can save her like this.” says the firefighter, causing the girl to cry even more.

Disgusted at the firefighter for not even attempting to save the girl's mother, when it's his job to save people from fire, Nate stands, struggling to stay on his feet due to exhaustion, and walks over to the little girl, hugging her tight. He knows what it's like to lose a mother, and can only imagine the terror this girl must be going through, imagining her mother trapped in that hell all by herself, nobody willing to save her. Filled with rage and hate at this man, Nate points his shaking finger at him.

“You...you should be ashamed! Isn't this your job? This innocent child is going to lose her mother because of you, you freaking coward!!!” he yellls, hoarsely, tears full of emotion dropping from his face, along with his sweat.

“Young man, you need to watch how you talk to adults. How do you expect me to save somebody from this, tough guy? If I go in there, I'll die too! This aint normal fire, never in my life of fighting fires have I EVER seen something like this before.” replies the firefighter. Ignoring him, Nate stands back up, and attempts to run back inside, but the firefighter drops his water hose, and grabs him. “Hey, hey, are you insane? Nobody is going in there unless they have a death wish!”

“Nate, what are you doing? Get back here, you can't save her.” says Connie, her and Annie trying to go after him, but are grabbed by two other firefighters.

“Can't save her you say? What's with all the doubt today, Connie? I'm gonna be this world's hero, and I start proving myself today. Just watch me!” he says, and with relative ease, throws the firefighter off of him, despite being dehydrated and extremely exhausted. Seemingly through sheer will alone, he sprints back inside the building with a hand full of daggers, Annie and Connie calling for him to come back.

He throws just a few daggers at the wall of flames blocking his way inside, as he doesn't have too many left and knows he'll need more once he actually gets in. This clears out the flames just a bit, leaving practically a ring of fire around the entrance, which he literally throws himself into, managing to completely avoid the fire, and making his way in, much to the shock of everybody witnessing this. Inside, he can hear a faint voice calling for help, and runs in that direction, clearing out the flames until he has no daggers left. Eventually he finds a woman trapped under a huge pile of debris that's slowly burning and will eventually be completely torched, burning her to death.

“Hey, I'm here too...save you” he says with a loud cough, dropping to his knees, his sudden burst of energy suddenly gone.

“But...you're not a firefighter, you're just a boy. You shouldn't have...” says the woman, feeling guilty that a teenager like Nate put his life on the line for her.

“That may be true, but...I'm...far more of a hero...than those guys will ever be!” he says, so tired he's finding it hard to speak. “Come on, I'm getting you out of here!” he says, and manages to free her before the debris burns, but she's now too weak to move, so he carries her on his shoulders. With how exhausted he already is, and with the added weight on his shoulders, he finds it impossible to take anymore than two steps, and collapses to the floor, feeling his vision start to blur out.

“Mother...I tried, you'll have to forgive me...” he says, as he passes out with all the flames around him ready to burn him to death.



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Posted on Fri Mar 20, 2015 11:59 am

Poor Nate... Really felt his feelings in this one.



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Posted on Sun Mar 22, 2015 2:38 pm

CH13 has arrived

Chapter 13


Nate is on his hands and knees, panting heavily, as he stares up at the figure towering over him. Lined up against the wall are four cages, each with a human inside, but the whole room appears to be covered in a veil of darkness, making it unclear who it is inside the cages, as well as who the man standing before Nate is.

Leaping back to his feet, Nate swings his fist at the man's chest, followed by a fury of blows one after the other. The man lets out a high pitched laugh, not reacting to Nate's punches in the slightest. It's like watching a meerkat trying to box with a gorilla. Nate drops to his knees again, but this time, the man grabs him by his face, lifting him off the ground with just one hand.

“Foolish boy, I have the power of Sloth! I do not care about anything you try to do to me! Now watch as I show you the power of Gluttony!” the man says, increasing his grip on Nate's face, making him scream as if in a great deal of pain as his life seems to be slowly drained away. When there seems to be only a few drops of life left in him, the man releases him, making him fall to the ground with a loud thud.

“Hahaha! Gluttony, the power to consume one's energy! Don't you get it, boy? I am invincible!!!”

“Sh-shut up!!!” yells Nate, his teeth clattering and his whole body shivering, as if freezing cold. He struggles his way back to his feet and attempts to swing at this man once more, but falls right back down.

“Foolish boy, there is no purpose in standing against me. You'll just keep standing to fall once again! One day, the whole world shall fall before me!!! Hahaha!!!” shouts the man with an evil laugh, as Nate shivers at his feet.


Nate's eyes open up, and the world around him is no longer covered in darkness. He's lying on a bed, and staring up at a white ceiling, in a room with white walls along with an open window, and a large TV hanging from the wall, above a table with vases filled with flowers set on it.

“Where am I...?” he asks himself, trying to remember what happened and how he got here, wherever he is. The door opens, and a woman dressed in white peeks in.

“Alright, he's awake, you can come in now.” she says. Nate expects it to be his sisters coming in, but instead he sees a little girl whom looks to be at the age of ten at most. He quickly remembers that this is the girl who's mother was trapped inside the burning building, and that he rushed back inside to save her. But he passed out inside, didn't he? Shouldn't he have been burnt to death?

“Hello mister! I'm Leah, what's your name?” says the little girl, holding something behind her back in a way that reminds him of how Annie and Connie held his present behind their backs on his seventh birthday.

“Hey, I'm Nate.” replies Nate, unsure what he should say to her, and wondering where his sisters and Shadow are. The little girl set the small, round thing she had behind her back on the table, and sits on the bed with Nate.

“Me and my mom really want to thank you for saving her. The firefighter's that went in way after you tried to take all the credit, but it was really you who saved the day!” she says. Nate realizes that the firefighter's must have came in and got him as well as this girl's mother out of there after he had cleared away enough of the flames.

“The nurse says she's paralyzed for life, so she'll never be able to move again...but if it weren't for you, I wouldn't ever even get to see her again. It was really cool how you ran back inside even though the building was burning! The way you made the fire disappear was like magic! You're a super hero!”

“I don't know about super, but...thanks.” says Nate, feeling proud that he's being praised for his heroic actions.

“Mom thinks it was really dangerous what you did, though, and wants to understand why someone so young would put their life on the line to save her...”

“It's simple. I know the pain of living without a mother, so I could only imagine how terrified you must have been at the thought of your mother in there all alone. I just couldn't bear the thought of anyone else going through the same pain I've gone through.” replies Nate, petting her head.

“Wow, you don't have a mom? That's really sad, I know 'cuz I don't have a dad. It's also really cool how that made you run through fire to save my mom! I want to be a hero like you when I get older!” exclaims Leah. Nate isn't used to having a conversation with anyone other than his sisters or Shadow, so he doesn't say anything due to not knowing what he should say.

“I should get going now, mom said I can talk to you for five minutes, but I wish I could talk to a hero like you all day. In fact, I wish you were my big brother! I had a big brother, but one day he disappeared from home and nobody ever found him...” says Leah, her eyes downcast. Nate imagines how he would feel if one of his sisters were to disappear and never be seen again, but quickly shakes the thought out of his head. He feels as if he can truly relate with this girl even though he just met her today.

“Oh, I almost forgot the gift I have for you!” she says, running over to the table and picking up the round thing she sat there. “Look, it's a good luck bracelet, just for you! Now that you have a gift from me, you'll always remember your good friend Leah!”

“F-Friend...?” asks Nate, shocked to hear that word from another human, since his only friends are Familiars.

“Of course! We are friends, right? I don't have any other friends...none of the kids at school like me, and sometimes they're really mean...I wish they were all like you!”

“Y-Yeah, we're friends...” says Nate, unable to understand how anyone could possibly want to be mean to this nice little girl.

“We will see each other again sometime, right?” she asks.

“Yeah, we will, I promise. I look forward to it.” replies Nate, making her smile and hug him, then she runs to the door to go back to her mom, the door opening as soon as she gets there. Annie, Connie, and Shadow come in as she exits.

“Well I see someone's finally awake, and happy too.” says Connie, noticing her brother's smile. Shadow jumps on Nate, licking his face, happy to see his friend is okay.

“Annie, Connie! Where am I? How long have I been here?” asks Nate.

“You're in a hospital, silly Natey! You've been fast asleep for like six hours.” says Annie.

“Thank goodness you're alive, Nate.” says Shadow, nuzzling his head on Nate's shoulder. “Once again, I failed to protect you, I'm sorry...”

“Shadow, how many times do I have to tell you? I'm the one who's supposed to protect you, not the other way around, you have no reason to apologize.” replies Nate, petting Shadow's back. Croakie hops out of Annie's pocket with a groan.

“Oh boy, here we go again...the boy and the stupid mutt are going to apologize for eternity.” says Croakie, rolling his eyes.

“I'm no stupid mutt, you slime ball!” barks Shadow.

“Slime ball? What do I look like to you, a slug?”

“Actually, yea, you do! Maybe we should call you Sluggy, the slime ball from now on!” laughs Shadow.

“Oh that's it, stupid mutt!” croaks Croakie, leaping at Shadow, but Annie grabs him and shoves him back in her pocket.

“Croakie, what did I tell you about starting fights with Shadow?” she asks, and he complains about Shadow calling him a slime ball, but Annie tells him that he's the one who called Shadow a stupid mutt first.

“Anyway, Nate, what you did was very brave, but also extremely reckless, and you could have died. Please don't do something like that again.” says Connie, crossing her arms.

“Someone had to do it, and I'm going to be a hero one day, so it was only natural that I did the heroic thing. Heroes are not afraid to sacrifice themselves for the sake of others.”

“But Natey, what if you had died? Can you imagine how we would feel? It's not very heroic to make the people that care about you worry like that.” says Annie, running her fingers through his hair. Nate hadn't even thought about that, and having thought about how he would feel if one of his sisters were to disappear just a few moments ago, he feels guilty now.

“I'm sorry...I just couldn't stand the thought of how that girl must have felt, with her mother trapped in there by herself and nobody willing to save her. I just...I had to do something.”

Connie's eyes widen, as if she just discovered the missing piece of a puzzle. “That reminds me, that firefighter said that was no ordinary fire, and they couldn't put out the fire at all. I don't think it was any accident that the hotel suddenly caught fire, with us all inside.”

“So you're saying somebody intentionally did that? But who would do something like that, and why?” asks Annie.

“I think somebody wants to kill us, or at least, wants to hurt us.” replies Connie. “Think about it, this happened just a few minutes after father's speech. Whoever did this must have somehow knew we were there, and also knew that Nate is King Emerald.”

“So somebody wants me dead, huh...” says Nate, remembering the girl who stole his skateboard and phone. She clearly wanted to hurt him, but if she wanted him dead, she could have killed him right then and there, so he doesn't think she would burn the building down. As he remembers her, he still can't shake away the feeling that he knows her somehow, even though he knows for a fact that was the first time he's ever seen her.

“But how would anyone know who Nate really is? Father told us to keep our identity as Emerald Empire secret, and we have, so there's no way anybody should know. Plus, if someone capable of something so horrible is hunting us while being able to find us wherever we go, how are we going to survive?” asks Annie.

“You saw how I put out the fire so we could all escape. As long as I have my daggers, we don't have to worry about a thing.” replies Nate, but when he touches his waist, he realizes that he used all of them up saving Leah's mother. “Oh...” he says.

“Maybe we should call father, he'll know what to do, right? Don't you think so, Natey?” suggests Annie, biting her nails.

“Well, we need to let him know I need more daggers, so yeah, you're right.” says Nate, nodding in agreement.

“Annie, calm down, you're overreacting.” says Connie, placing her hands on her sister's shoulders.

“How am I supposed to calm down when you said someone is trying to kill us?! How am I supposed to go to have sweet dreams tonight with the thought of being killed while I sleep in my head? I'm not trying to die, so either you call father, or I'll call him, and tell him that you said not too!”

“Annie, I was just overthinking it, that's all...the fire was probably just an accident, okay? There isn't anyone trying to kill us.” replies Connie, clearly not wanting to talk to their father right now.

“You're just saying that, Connie! There probably really is someone trying to kill us! I'm calling father, right now!” exclaims Annie, taking her phone out of her pocket, which Connie slaps out of her hand.

“Alright, alright, I'll do it!” says Connie with a sigh, walking out of the room to call him. After several minutes she comes back in, with an expression of discomfort on her face.

“What did he say?” asks both Nate and Annie.

“He said he's on his way here...” replies Connie, taking them both by surprise. Neither of them had expected their father to actually come here, they thought he would just tell them what to do over the phone and send a soldier over with more daggers for Nate. Within just a few minutes, there's a knocking on the door, and without waiting on anyone to open the door for him, Sartur makes his way in.

“I can see that my advanced technology has proven quite useful indeed, yes?” he asks, walking over to the window with his hands behind his back.

“Yes father, the daggers you gave me saved the lives of us all, but I had to use them all.” says Nate.

“Hmm...I wonder who would try to kill this world's savior? The traitor Vincent has already been annihialted, and I don't believe there are any other traitors amongst us. Do we already have ourselves an open foe? This is interesting, very interesting...” says Sartur, while gazing out the window. “You three did not give out your last name to anyone at all, correct?” he asks.

“We haven't gave away our identity, father, we don't know how anyone could know who we are.” replies Annie.

“Have you met any suspicious people on your journey so far? Any at all?” asks Sartur.

“There was one, actually. A girl with one red eye, one blue eye, and black hair. She wore a black dress, and she could teleport. I don't know what she wants from me, but she stole my skateboard, and my phone too.” says Nate.

“Teleport?” asks Sartur, turning around with interest. “So you met a human who could teleport...this is completely unheard of. I wonder, what would happen to a human being with a Demon inside their soul?” he says, scratching his beard.

“Huh? Father, you mean you think that this girl was... Wrath?!” asks Nate.

“It makes sense, no?” says Sartur, slowly pacing to the side. “You say this girl stole from you, and now the hotel you stayed at burned down at the face of abnormal flames. If we say that she is the culprit here, then don't her actions sound like sins of Wrath?” he says. Nate can't believe he didn't realize this himself.

“Such power these Demons can grant to a mere human! Imagine if power like this belonged to our empire!” exclaims Sartur, pacing to the other side. “But tell me, why is it that I am just now being informed of this? You do know that I built that skateboard from scratch with my own hands, correct?” he asks.

“It was my fault, father. I let Nate go off on his own, and forgot to tell you what happened...I'm sorry, father.” says Connie, always quick to take the blame for everything.

“And the daggers I worked oh so hard to create were wasted on saving some foolish woman?”

“That was also my fault...I told Nate that it was cowardly of him to not save her when he was capable of it, which made him feel like he had too.” says Connie, staring at the floor to avoid making eye contact with her brother. Nate wants to say that it was really his fault, but he already knows Connie will just tell him to stop trying to take the blame, even though it's really her taking the blame for him.


Sartur sighs and shakes his head. “When will you ever learn? I asked you to keep your brother and sister safe, and you've done exactly the opposite. Come with me, I think we need to have a little talk in private.” he says. Connie bites her lip, and averts her gaze to the side, clearly not wanting to go with him, but he grabs her arm and starts to walk out the door with her.

“Hey, what do you think you're doing?!” asks Nate, jumping to his feet and blocking his father's way out of the room. Connie shakes her head and motions for him to sit back down before he makes things worse.

“Oh? What do we have here? I wonder what you think you are doing, my boy.” asks Sartur, in a cold, dark voice.

“A better question is what you call yourself doing. If you hurt her, I am going to see to it that you are fired, and banished from the Emerald Empire!” exclaims Nate. His sisters stare at him with dropped jaws, completely astonished to see him standing up to their father like this.

“Haha! My boy, are you forgetting who created our empire in the first place?”

“So what? I'm the king now, am I not? You follow my orders now, and should learn your place, you lowly Wise Man! And I have an order for you right now, actually. Bring me back some more daggers, as soon as possible, got it? If I do not have them within two days, you will be demoted to a Soldier, got it?” says Nate, pocking his father in the chest with his finger. Sartur stares at him silently for a moment, then a smile slowly spreads across his face.

“Of course, my king, I must apologize for the inconvenience.” he says and bows like the soldiers. “You will have your daggers by tomorrow, but it would be wise that three of you stay here for a few days. If you aren't sighted anywhere, Wrath might think she successfully killed you, and stop stalking you. In the mean time, I will make sure the top ranked soldiers are guarding you 24/7.” he says, and then makes his exit, shutting the door behind him. When he's gone, Connie sighs with relief, and hugs Nate tight.

“Nate...you've grown so much. I'm proud of you.” she says.

Nate smiles. “I'm the king, so everybody obeys me...even Father.” he says.



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Posted on Mon Mar 23, 2015 1:22 am

Aww. Natey gotten his first real human friend. :3



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Posted on Fri Mar 27, 2015 1:54 pm

CH14 done. Once again it feels rushed but oh well i try.

Chapter 14


“Tch, this is annoying, how long must we babysit the king?” says Andrew, leaning against the door to the hospital with crossed arms. He and Maya have been guarding Nate, Annie, and Connie for three whole days, and he's quite sick of it. The two of them are dressed in casual clothes instead of their soldier uniforms, to prevent anyone from getting suspicious, although they are using an earpiece to keep in contact with the rest of the soldiers at all times.

“You should be honored that we've personally been assigned the duty of guarding Lord Nate.” replies Maya.

“Honored? Yeah, maybe it's an honor for you 'cuz you get to drool at his feet like a shameless school girl. Do I need to remind you that you're mine and mine alone?” asks Andrew, wrapping one of his arms around her shoulders, and the other around her waist, kissing her neck.

“I don't drool at his feet...” says Maya, blushing as he suggestively rubs her thighs while kissing her neck and cheeks.

“Heck yeah you do, everyone has seen the way you stare at him. What could you possibly like about him that I don't have? Is it those damn light eyes of his? Or maybe it's just because he's the king?” at the mention of Nate's eyes, Maya gets a dreamy expression on her face, making Andrew shove her to the side in disgust. “You get that same dumb look on you're face every time someone says his name!”

“That's not true...”

“If I were the king, like I'm supposed to be, then you'd be all over me like that! But those freaking Emerald's always manage to steal everything from me. I should be the king, not him, and we should be known as the Cyder Empire, named after my father, not his! But now that the throne has been taken by him, and that bastard Sartur killed my father, why should I even stay here?” says Andrew, touching his scar.

“But your father didn't treat you right.” replies Maya.

“He wasn't always that way!” shouts Andrew, banging his fist against the wall in rage. “I remember, he used to be a very kind man, but one day something in him changed and he became like a totally different person.” he says, remembering what a friendly, family man Vincent used to be, but one day he seemed full of hatred, and started to abuse his wife and son. Eventually, Andrew's mother disappeared from the castle, never to be seen again. Nobody knows what happened to her, but most of the empire believe that she was killed, while Andrew firmly believes that she's alive, somewhere out there. “My father became like that because of Sartur, I know it! He always said he doesn't trust that man, and I don't either. Now because of him, I've lost my parents, so why should I stay here and serve him?”

“If you run away, you won't have anyone but yourself. If you stay, I'll still be here with you.” says Maya, kissing Andrew's lips.

“Yeah, you're the only one I have left. But my mom is alive, I just know it, and one day, I'm gonna find her.” he says. Just then, Maya hears a female voice singing, and sees a girl zoom by on a skateboard.

“Huh? Was that...?” asks Maya, then runs off after her.

“What? Where the hell is she going in a hurry like that? Oh well.” says Andrew with a shrug. He walks back inside the hospital with a shrug, whistling with his hands in his pockets. He bumps into a little girl, Leah, whom stares up at him, blinking.

“Hey, watch where you're going kid! Get lost!”

“Oh, I'm sorry, sir...” says Leah, shaking her head, and running out the building.

After quite a while of running, Maya finally decides to give up on chasing the girl she saw, now that she's completely out of her range of sight, and she can no longer hear her singing. She puts her hands on her knees, panting from running so far.

“Well well, what have we here?” says a female voice. Maya looks up and sees another female solider, sitting on a bench reading a newspaper. “Aren't you supposed to be guarding Lord Nate? Yet you're here panting like the dog you are?”

“You should watch the way you talk the top ranked soldier in the entire empire.” replies Maya, as she catches her breath.

“Ha! What are you going to do about it, cry to your daddy? In that case, I hope you also let him know that your slacking on your job. Don't get all cocky over that title of yours, you only have it because your father is Wise Man Zart, master Sartur's best friend.” The other soldiers have never been very fond of Maya because they feel like Maya is ranked above them simply because of who her father is, leading them to constantly tease her about it. Maya refuses to believe that this is the case, thinking she got her title through hard work, dedication, and loyalty. When they first started teasing her about it, she told her father how they were treating her, and got one of them fired. However, this led to even more teasing by the other soldiers, as they started to call her a daddy's girl and a tattle tale, so she stopped telling him when they mistreat her.

“How can you manage to slack on a job as huge as guarding the king anyway? Getting to be alone with Lord Nate...don't you know how much some of us would love to be honored with that job? You could at least give me the details!”

“Details...? I-it's not like that, I haven't been alone with him at all! I've just been keeping an eye out for anything suspicious, like I was ordered.” says Maya, cheeks flushed red at the thought of what this soldier is implying.

“Oh please, you don't have to deny it! We all know you want to be with the king, not that pig, Andrew. I mean, who wouldn't? He has the face of an angel! Come on, if you tell me, I promise I won't tell anyone else, and I'll even be your best friend too!”

“I told you, it's not like that!” says Maya, getting annoyed. After the other soldiers saw the way Maya was staring at Nate during the feast, they started to tease her about it as well. The only friends she ever had were Andrew and another female soldier her age, but that soldier disappeared eight years ago and never returned.

“Well, my break's over, but don't forget to give me the details, okay?” says the other soldier, walking off.

Maya can then hear Andrew speaking to her through her earpiece. “Hey, where the hell are you?! You can't just leave me to do this stupid job on my own, get your ass back here!” he says.

“Right, sorry, I'm on my way back.” she says, and heads back to the hospital. When she made it back, she found Andrew, sitting slumped against the wall, with a bottle of wine in his hand. “Took ya long enough, where the hell have you been?” he says, his breath reeking of alcohol.

“You've been drinking again? Andrew, you're only eighteen! You could get in serious trouble if the police caught you doing this!” says Maya, trying to take the bottle from him, but he splashes most of the liquid on her face and clothes, then chugs down the rest, wiping his mouth off with is sleeve.

“Who the fuck are you to tell me what I can't do, bitch?” he says, standing up and slapping her in the face. “And what the hell makes you think you can just run off and leave by myself like that, huh?!” he shouts, gripping her by the collar of her shirt. For two years he has been underage drinking as a way to cope with his depression, but when he gets drunk, he also becomes abusive to Maya. She hates it when he gets like this, in fact the only reason she stays with him is because she knows he doesn't have anyone else and doesn't want to leave him all alone.

“Andrew, people are staring at us...” she says, glancing behind her shoulder and noticing people staring at them as they walk past.

“You think I give a shit who sees? If they wanna stare, they can stare all they fucking want!” he says, and when he sees someone else walk by and stare at them, he throws the empty wine bottle at their feet. “What the hell you looking at fool? You see this? This is MY chick, so I can do whatever I please with her!” he says, sliding one his hands up her shirt, and the other one down her pants. The passerby just walks away, acting as if they didn't see anything. “Come on, we're gonna do it right here, right now!” he says.

“Andrew, no...we're in public.” says Maya, pushing him off her, blushing in complete embarrassment.

“What do you mean no? You think you can just refuse me? Fine! I don't need you anyway, what I really need is another drink!” he says, and walks off to get himself another drink.

“Andrew...you've become just like your father.” says Maya, touching her cheek where he hit her, watching him walk off.



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Posted on Fri Mar 27, 2015 2:35 pm

Pretty good. All I have to say is this....

If the chapter feels rushed, try re-doing the chapter and take more time with it.



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Posted on Tue Mar 31, 2015 4:24 pm


Chapter 15


It's been four whole days since the hotel burned down, and now Nate and his sisters are finally headed back out, believing they should be safe now. Having already been to the desert and met the Demons, the trio is not entirely sure where their next destination should be. Nate is supposed to awaken Basilisk, but they have no leads on where to actually find it.

“Maybe we should do something fun for a change. We've been free from the castle for about a week now, and we've gone through so much in that short period of time. Don't you guys think we deserve to enjoy our freedom, just for a bit?” suggests Annie, as they walk through the town.

“But we didn't leave the castle to have fun, we were given a clear mission and we need to stick with it.” replies Connie.

“Aww, can't we just say screw that and do whatever we please, at least for today only? Nate's the king, if he says we can do what we want today, then his word is final! So what do you think, Natey?” asks Annie, hugging her brother from behind in her usual way.

“Oh boy, here we go again with the double teaming.” says Connie, rolling her eyes. She waits to hear what Nate thinks, even though she already knows he's going to side with Annie.

“Hmm, well...” says Nate, scratching his chin as if fully considering all of their options. “We don't really know where we're going or what to do as of right now, so it couldn't hurt to just have fun today. After all, I'm sure Mother would want us to enjoy ourselves every once in a while, right?”

“Yay, it's decided then! So, where should we go, what should we do? There is so much I've always wanted to do, it's gonna be hard to pick just one!” exclaims Annie, excitedly. Her and Nate come up with idea after idea of what they should do, as if they've been wanting to do these things their whole lives. Croakie hops out of her pocket, and sits on her head. “Mind if I make a suggestion?”

“Oh, sure Croakie, what do you think we should do?” asks Annie.

“Why don't we go to the beach? Oh how I miss my little pond...” says Croakie, reminiscing about the days when he happily lived in a little pond at a park with his family and friends. The pond, however, was slowly becoming polluted, and one day it became so polluted it killed every Familiar living inside it, except for Croakie, whom managed to escape, leaving him all by himself. Sartur found him and brought him to the castle, giving him to Annie, much like how he gave Shadow to Nate. “Of course, there are no ponds at the beach, but there is the ocean. This dry, dusty place we are now is just not my thing.” he says.

“Oh yes, the beach! Then I'll be able to build my sand castle without getting attacked by an army of ants!” Annie shudders as she remembers how those ants crawled all over her when she tried to make a sand castle here.

“I object! I do not like getting wet at all!” says Shadow, shaking his head at the thought of being in water.

“I think you could use a good soaking, you filthy mutt.” says Croakie, once again instigating a fight with Shadow, but Annie shoves him back in her pocket. “What did I tell you about being mean to Shadow? You should really try getting along with him.” she says. “Anyway, I don't think you're required to get in the water, Shadow. You can stay in the sand and you won't get wet.”

“Well, I guess it's okay, so long as I don't get wet.” replies Shadow. Nate also agrees they should go to the beach, so now everybody wants to go to the same place. Everybody except Connie, that is. She doesn't seem interested in the idea at all. “The beach? Are you guys sure you really want to go there?” she asks, looking uncomfortable.

“Yeah, of course! You don't want too, Connie? Why not?” asks Annie.

“Well...we don't even know if there are any beaches around here to begin with, or how we'll get there.” says Connie, but right after she says this, two kids run past, talking about the beach and how the bus to get there leaves in half an hour. “Well, that answers that.” says Nate.

“But if we go to the beach, your clothes will get dirty from playing in the sand...isn't there something you want to do that doesn't involve getting dirty?” says Connie, giving her siblings the impression that she's trying to find any way out of going to the beach possible, but they can't understand why.

“That just means we'll get to have fun shopping for cute beach clothes! That will be so much fun, don't you think, sis?” says Annie.

“We could also have a picnic their too. Sitting on a blanket at the beach, with a real picnic basket, under the sun....this is going to be a fun day. Annie, remember the time we had our own little picnic in my room?” says Nate, remembering the day he and Annie pretended to have a picnic in his room, using an empty box from one of his toys as a picnic basket.

“Of course! How could I forget something like that? If we had that much fun with a pretend picnic, imagine how fun it would be to have a real picnic!”

Connie sighs, realizing that she won't be able to talk them out of it, and seeing how excited they are, feels like it would be unfair to them if they don't go because of her. “Alright, let's go then.”

So they wait at the bus stop for half an hour, then when they board the bus, the driver asks to see their ID's, which they don't have. Nate and Annie look at each other, then at Connie, knowing she'll know what to do. She apologizes to the driver for them not being able to provide any ID's, but gives him extra money instead, which he takes without hesitation, letting them on.

“So this is what it's like inside a bus, huh?” says Nate, staring out the window without taking a seat, resulting in him falling in Annie's lap when the bus took off. “Silly Natey.” giggles Annie. “I didn't expect it to be so bumpy.” he says, as he sits up.

When the bus comes to it's first stop, a man with a skateboard gives the bus driver a dollar, but when he tries to take a seat, the driver asks to see his ID, and when he says he doesn't have it on him, he tells him he can't let him on. “Then give me my dollar back.” but the bus driver says he can't because the machine already took it, so the man demands that he either gives him his dollar back or let's him on, but the driver tells him he can't do that. “Give me another dollar then, that was my last one and I've been waiting in that heat for this damn bus all day!” but the driver still refuses him, so he slams his fist down with rage and points his middle finger at the driver. “FUCK!!! FUCK YOU!!!” he yells, startling most people on the bus, including Nate and his sisters. He kicks the machine that the money is inserted inside, then gets off the bus, but points at the man one more time. “FUCK YOU MAN!!! FUCK YOU!!!” he yells again, then the bus takes off once more.

“That was scary...” says Annie.

“Yeah...but I can't help feeling bad for him, being kicked off the bus without any money to get on another. The only reason we were able to get on is because we had extra money, if we hadn't we'd be stranded just like him.” says Nate, realizing how fortunate they are to have so much money.
The bus ride continues for a while, causing Nate to fall asleep with his head in Annie's lap. She plays with his hair, and takes pictures of her sleeping brother, thinking it's so cute, though she almost drifts asleep herself, but the bus comes to another stop, and Connie taps her on the shoulder, letting her know they reached their destination. Excited, she shakes Nate, making him wake up with a yawn. “Natey, we're here! We've finally made it to the beach!”

“Hm?” he says, rubbing his eyes. “Oh, the beach! Yes! Picnic, here I come!” he exclaims, jumping to his feet, and him and Annie run out the bus, holding hands.

“Hey, don't just run off on your own like that, you two!” says Connie, chasing after them. When she catches up with them, she slaps them both on the back of their heads. “Ow! Meanie!” says Annie.

“So, that's the beach over there?” he asks, seeing lots of sand and the ocean off in the distance. The town they are in now isn't dry and dusty like the last one, and seems a lot livelier too.

“Yep! But first, we have to go shopping for beach clothes and picnic stuff, right Connie?” asks Annie, Connie nodding. “The mall is right there, let's go see what we can find.” says Connie, leading the way inside the mall. As soon as they step in, they can see plenty of teenagers, as well as some adults and kids. The air conditioning reminds them of their always air conditioned rooms back at the castle, but the music they can hear is the first time in their lives hearing any music other than that creepy tune that plays in Nate's room.

“We'll get Nate's stuff first, you two, make sure you hold each other's hands the whole time.” says Connie. “Hold hands? But we're not little babies, sis.” complains Annie.

“No, but you are my two little eagles, and I surely wouldn't want you getting lost. Besides, I'm sure you were already going to hold his hand. It's rare to see you without your hand in his, or your arms wrapped around him.”

“Hmph, fair enough. Come on Natey, let's go find you something cool to wear to the beach!” says Annie, grabbing her brother's hand and following Connie as she leads them to the mens section. When they get on the escalators to reach the second floor, Nate can't stop talking about how amazing it is that somebody invented moving stairs. Annie on the other hand thinks it's so much fun, and when they reach the top, she tries to get on again, but Connie grabs her by the back of her shirt, dragging her along. “Alright, let's see what we can find for you, Nate.” she says, releasing Annie.

They look through the male swimwear for a while, until Annie finds a pair of dark green swim trunks with lightning bolt designs on the sides, which she thinks will look good on him. She hands them to him, along with a sleeveless white t-shirt, and tells him to try them on. When he comes out of the changing room, she goes on about how awesome he looks in it, and Connie gives him a pair of sandals to wear. Then they head to the section for female swimwear to find something for the girls. Annie keeps showing stuff to Connie, all of which Connie tells her is too revealing and that she needs to pick something more modest. Eventually, she finds a pink sundress, which Connie also says no to, but she really wants this one, and even found a matching yellow one for Connie, so Connie sighs and let's her try it on.

“What do you think? Isn't it adorable?” says Annie with a twirl, as she comes out of the changing room.

“Yes, it looks good on you, but look at how far above your knees it is...plus it has no sleeves. I don't think I could wear this.” says Connie, holding up the sundress Annie picked out for her.

“Oh just try it on, stop acting afraid to show your cute side!” says Annie, pushing her sister inside the changing room. “Alright, alright!” says Connie, giving up and trying it on.

“Hey Annie, don't you think Connie has been acting kinda strange all day? It seems like she really doesn't want to be here, and I can't understand why.” says Nate.

“Oh don't worry about it, Natey, I'm sure she's just pretending she doesn't want to have fun so she can keep up her appearance as a party pooper.” replies Annie, not thinking much of it.

When Connie comes out of the changing room, Nate thinks he now understands why Connie has been acting so strange. He had never noticed it before, but her legs are battered and bruised from years of abuse, and her arms are covered in cuts, some of them looking fresh. Could she have not wanted them to see this? Then he remembers the other night, when he saw her crying and took one of his daggers, and wonders if she did this to her arms herself, but doesn't understand why someone would do something like that. Annie seems to either not notice, or has seen it before, since she's taking pictures of her sister with her phone, going on and on about how cute she looks.

“Cut it out, Annie...” says Connie, hands shyly behind her back, cheeks flushed red.

“But you're so cute, oh my god! Don't you think so, Natey?”

Nate decides to act as if he doesn't notice Connie's cuts and bruises, not wanting her to feel uncomfortable. “Yeah, Annie's right, you look adorable! Maybe even cuter than Annie!” he says with a laugh, hands clasped behind his head.

“W-What? That's not funny, Natey!!!” says Annie, chasing her brother all over the place. “Cut it out, you two.” says Connie, unable to stop herself from laughing at her silly little siblings.

They continue shopping a bit more, and Connie gets sandals for her and Annie, sunblock, a beach umbrella, beach chairs, a shovel and pail so Annie can make her sand castle, and sunglasses as well as a sunhat for herself. Then they exit the mall and go to shop for picnic supplies now.

“Alrighty, we just need a basket, blanket, and, uhm, what else...” says Annie. “Well there's no point in having a picnic without any food, so obviously that's the next thing we need.” replies Connie.

“H-Hey, I could use some help carrying all this...” says Nate, struggling to carry everything they've brought so far by himself.

“Oh I'm sure a big strong man like you can handle it, Natey.” says Annie, skipping about as she looks for the supplies they need.

“But I don't think kings normally carry their supplies, or anyone else's supplies for that matter...” replies Nate, dropping some of the stuff.

“I suppose that is too much for one person to carry, let me help you out.” says Connie, taking some of the load off of him.

After they get everything they need, they finally head out to the beach. Nate drops everything he was carrying, and stretches his arms out, his hair flowing with the wind. “Yes, the beach! Now that we're here, what should we do first?”

“I know what I'm here for: the water! Sweet ocean, here I come baby!” says Croakie, leaping into the water with a splash.

“I'm staying as far away from that water as possible, so I'll just stay over here and help set everything up.” says Shadow, with a shiver.

“Oh, we still have to set up? Boring...” pouts Annie, ready to start having fun. “Don't worry, me and Shadow can take care of it, you two go ahead and start playing. Just don't get in the water, you can't swim.” says Connie, laying out the picnic blanket.

“Yippee! Let's go have some fun, Natey!” says Annie, grabbing his hand and running towards the water where Croakie went. “Hey Natey, guess what?” she asks, smiling innocently. “What?” asks Nate. “You're it!” she says, poking him in his ribs and running off laughing.

“Hey, no fair! You got a head start!” he says, chasing after her. They keep playing tag until Nate gets too tired to keep running around and admits defeat. Annie has longer legs than him, meaning she can run faster, leaving Nate unable to tag her even once. “I guess this is the one game I can beat you at, Natey.” says Annie, walking over to him and petting his head. “Tag, you're it!” yells Nate, poking her side.

“Hey, that's cheating Natey, you said you concede, so that means the game is over and I won!” complains Annie. “Haha! I'm just kidding, chill out, hot head.” laughs Nate. Shadow runs over to them, now that he and Connie are done setting up, ready to have fun with them, so long as he doesn't have to get wet.

“What should we do now?” asks Nate, sitting in the sand. “Build my sand castle, of course!” says Annie, grabbing the shovel and pail they got for the sand castle. “Your sand castle? Shouldn't we call it Nate's sand castle, since I'm the king around here?”

“Silly Natey, you're king of the empire, while I'm queen of the beach!” chuckles Annie. While the three of them are building it, Nate notices that Connie is sitting under the beach umbrella by herself, reading a newspaper, her sun hat and glasses shielding her from the sun. She already set everything up, so Nate can't understand why she isn't playing with them, and decides to sit next to her.

“Hey, what'cha reading?” he asks. “Oh, this article, it's very interesting. It seems kids have been mysteriously disappearing for quite a number of years now.” replies Connie, handing it to him so he can read it for himself. One thing the two of them always had in common is that they both love to read.

“For over three decades now, young children and infants have been disappearing without a trace. Not a single missing child has been found yet, and they are still disappearing to this day. For whatever reason, every single missing child has been of the age two-years old or younger. Parents all over the world live in fear of losing their kids to an unknown criminal. This can't be a mere coincident, but yet, there are still no clues to solving this mystery.” he reads out loud, amazed. As he reads it, he recalls Leah telling him that her brother suddenly disappeared one day. Could he perhaps be one of these missing children?

“Yeah, I wonder who would do such a thing, and why. How have they been doing this for over thirty years without being caught even once?” says Connie.

“Is there anything else interesting in there?” asks Nate, turning the page. The first thing they see on the next page is a picture of their father, from the day he gave that speech on live T.V. “Huh? That's...father!”

“The end of the world?!” says Connie, reading the title. Her and Nate read the article together. “Just a few days ago we saw a mysterious man named Sartur give the most bizarre speech imaginable. Surrounded by what seemed to be his own personal guards, this man preached about the king of two hundred years ago, just like every other Basilisk worshipper. However, could this man have actually been enlightened?” as they read it, they find out that the majority of the world is viewing their empire as a cult, but there are some people who believe his words and are spreading his words all over the place, and also passing out fliers that say 'all hail king Emerald'.

“So everybody thinks I'm either a made up story, or this savior I'm supposed to become.” says Nate. He's about to turn to the next page, but Annie calls him over to see the sand castle. Putting the paper down, he sees that she managed to make the castle huge and actually look like a real castle. “Whoa, don't finish it without me!” he says, dropping the paper to run back over there and help finish the castle.

When they finished the castle, Annie gave Nate her phone so he could take a picture of her standing next to it. Then Croakie, whom was in the water this whole time, splashes them both. “Castles are fun and all, but the water is even more fun.” he says.

“But Croakie, we're not allowed to go in the water, we can't swim like you.” says Annie.

“That's all right, you don't have to get inside to play a good game of splash!” says Croakie, splashing them again.

Shadow backs up, trying to avoid getting wet in the least. “I've said it before and I'll say it again. I am NOT getting w-” before he can finish his sentence, Croakie splashes him, laughing as if he did the funniest thing ever. “Oh that's it, you're going down!” barks Shadow, trying to splash Croake, but he keeps hopping out of the way and splashing Shadow, whom fails to dodge.

“Come on Natey, don't let the Familiars have all the fun!” says Annie. Her and Nate join their Familiars, splashing each other and having the time of their lives. They decided to split into teams: Annie and Croakie against Nate and Shadow, and end up calling Connie over to join in on the fun. She refuses at first, but seeing how much fun they are having, she sighs, trying to hide her smile, and joins their game, ending up having just as much fun as the rest of them. With her added to the game, they decided to turn it into a splash battle royale, everyone for themselves, since they no longer have an even amount of people for teams. They keep playing as the hours fly by, until Nate's stomach growls, and they all realize how hungry they are.

“Wait, who won?” asks Connie, as they walk back to the picnic blanket. “Everybody, silly! As long as you had fun, you won any game.” says Annie, everybody agreeing. After their picnic, they all lay down on the blanket, staring at the sky, watching the clouds. Connie slowly drifts asleep, and Annie whispers something in Nate's ear, which brings a slick smile to his face. As she sleeps, the two of them bury her in the sand then wake her up. “Huh? What did you...get me out!!!” she exclaims.

“Hmm, I dunno if we should. What do you think, Natey? Should we free her?” asks Annie, but Nate seems distracted by something in the distance. “Is that...an ice cream truck?!” he asks, excitedly. Annie gasps. “Ice cream! I've always wondered what ice cream tastes like! Connie, you HAVE to let us get some!”

“I don't have to let you do anything until you get me out of this sand!” exclaims Connie, so they hastily dig her out. “Alright, but get me one too.” she says once they are finished digging her out. Nate and Annie rush over to the ice cream truck, making sure they get there before it leaves. Annie gets a strawberry ice cream cone, Nate gets mint with chocolate chips, and they get lemon for Connie.

“So cold, drippy too. But so good...” says Nate, savoring his first taste of ice cream as he runs back to their picnic blanket to give Connie hers. Following him while licking her ice cream, Annie's phone suddenly starts ringing, and she sees that it's being called by Nate's phone. But Nate is right over there, and his phone was stolen, so that must mean the girl who stole her phone is calling her! She let's him get a good distance ahead of her, then answers. “H-Hello...?”

“Hi, is this Annie, Nate's sister?” asks the female voice on the other line. “Uhm...that depends, who's asking?” replies Annie. “Oh, where are my manners? I should introduce myself. I'm Mary, Nate's girlfriend. I was calling to see if me and him are still on for tomorrow night.”

“Girlfriend...? Tomorrow night...? I don't understand. Why do you have his phone? You are the one who Nate was talking about that stole his phone, aren't you?!” says the confused Annie.

“Stole? Goodness me, no! He left in such a hurry on our last date that he forgot it, and luckily I noticed.” replies Mary, sounding like she's resisting a laugh. “Anyway, I gotta go. I sure hope Nate didn't forget about our plans for tomorrow night!” says Mary.

“Wait! What are you doing with my brother tomorrow? And what's a 'girlfriend'?!” demands Annie, but Mary already hung up. She notices Nate and Connie waving in her direction, packing up their stuff, ready to go.

“Nate...is there something you've been hiding from me?” she says to herself.




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Posted on Wed Apr 01, 2015 1:20 am

That ending... Was not expecting that. o.o



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Posted on Fri Apr 03, 2015 4:27 pm

Then you surely won't be expecting what Annie does this chapter XD

Chapter 16
After their fun day at the beach, the kids decided to sleep at another hotel, feeling comfortable that it wouldn't magically catch fire this time. Annie stayed awake the whole night, watching her brother, suspicious of him due to the phone call she received. The next day, Nate and Connie noticed the bags under their sister's eyes and asked her if she's okay, but she just tells them that she had a hard time sleeping because she was thinking about how much fun they had at the beach. Not thinking much of it, Nate and Connie believed her, seeing as such a thing is in her personality.

While they were discussing how they should go about looking for Basilisk, Annie suggested that going to the library to do some research could help. Knowing that the library is a place full of books, Nate agreed without hesitation, while Connie was surprised her little sister came up with such a smart idea. The library had a strict 'no Familiars allowed' policy, which resulted in Nate getting into an argument with the librarian about Familiar rights, but Connie said she'll stay with Shadow and Croakie while he and Annie do their research.

Nate, despite having come there with the purpose of researching Basilisk, got distracted by all the children's books. Annie told him not to worry about the research and that she could take care of it, so he happily explored the children's section, reading picture book after picture book, and even sitting down with a group of little kids at story time, even more into the story than the little kids.

As Nate was practically in heaven, Annie was flipping through the pages of a dictionary, until she found the word 'girlfriend'. “The female companion that a male has a romantic or sexual relationship.” Still confused, she read the definitions of the words 'romantic' and 'sexual', but she felt like the definitions were too vague, so she got up and asked the librarian what she should do if she has important research to take care of. The librarian tells her that the best way to do research is by using the internet, so she went to the Computer Lab, but couldn't figure out how to work the computer.

“Come on magic box thingy, work...” she says, banging her fist on the monitor. She feels a tap on her shoulder, and sees that the guy seated at the computer closest to her slid his chair over to her. “Uh, do you need help?” she nods, so he shows her how to open up the internet and tells her that she just has to type anything in on the search engine and stuff will show up for her to click. As she does her research, he stares at her, surprised that a girl her age doesn't know how to use the internet, seeing as it's what everyone is into these days.

“Alright, let's see...” she says, typing in all the words she's curious about. While reading full definitions and examples of these words, she finds more and more words she's not familiar with, searching them up as well. The more she reads, the more she can feel her cheeks burning up in embarrassment.
“This would be a lot easier to understand if I could see some pictures.” she clicks on 'images' and types in every word she's been looking up so far. When she typed in 'sexual intercourse', none of the images would load properly, so she clicked them then clicked 'visit page', but every page gave her an error message, saying something about the website being blocked.

“W-What??? Come on stupid computer, don't stop working on me now! I need to see what Natey is going to be doing with my own eyes!!!” she says, banging her fist on the monitor again. The guy sitting closest to her slides his chair over to her again, and when he sees what she has typed in, his eyes widen.

“U-uhm, are you...trying to watch porn at the library...? You can't do that, they block any inappropiate websites...”

“No no no!!! What am I supposed to do now? My little brother is going to do this 'sex' thing with a girl tomorrow and I still don't fully understand it!” she exclaims, not realizing that she's talking loud enough for people to stare at her in awe.

“You shouldn't talk so loud at the library, especially about something so inappropiate...” the guy says, covering her mouth. “If you have a phone, you should be able to get on the internet from it without anything being blocked.”

“My phone can do that? Oh, why didn't Father tell us this on Natey's birthday? I didn't even have to come here in the first place! Thanks, whatever your name is!” she dashes off to find her brother.

“Wow, so the family came back for the dog in the end...” says Nate, as he closes what must have been at least the 50th book he read today.

“Come on Natey, time to go!” says Annie, grabbing his hand. Her eyes seem even baggier than they did this morning, as if she's stressed out, but Nate doesn't even notice, too interested in all the books.

“We have to go already? But there's still so much I have to read!” he protests, but Annie tells him that he'll just have to come back another time, and they exit the library, and see Connie, Shadow, and Croakie sitting outside, as if they had been waiting there for hours.

“Took you long enough. I take it you must have a lot of outstanding information to share?” says Connie.

“I certainly do.” says Nate, Shadow greeting him by licking his face. “Remember the book about the starving dog?”

“Yeah, that story was really sad. What about it?”

“It turns out that the family didn't actually leave the dog home alone on purpose, and they came rushing back to get him. I wonder why that wasn't in the copy of the book we have at the castle?”

“Wow, really? That IS interesting, very interesting. Could ours have somehow been sold without all the pages?” says Connie, amazed at what her brother just told her. They have plenty of children's picture books at the castle, and all of the ones about Familiars emphasized how bad they are treated, not a single one of them a happy story. “But what does that have to do with Basilisk? I thought we came here to research it, not read for fun?”

Nate slaps his forehead. He completely forgot what they actually came there for! “Gah! How did I manage to forget that?!”

“I can imagine you forgetting, little eagle, after all you do love to read.” says Connie, patting Nate's shoulder. “What about you, Annie? Did you find out anything useful?”

“Hm?” says Annie, whom had her phone out, not seeming to be listening to her siblings. “Oh, I searched my hardest to find a clue in helping us find Basilisk, but I didn't find anything.”

Connie sighs. “I knew I shouldn't have left it up to you two. Okay, I'm going to go in this time, you two wait out here.”

While waiting for Connie, Nate notices Annie on her phone, so he peeks over her shoulder and asks what she's doing. Noticing his presence she quickly hides it back in her pocket and tells him not to worry about it. Her reaction to him doing this only makes him all the more curious and Annie realizes that she's going to need privacy to do her research.

"Ugh I don't feel so good..." she says, doubling over as if about to throw up.

"Are you sick? You haven't looked so good all day"

“I dunno.. maybe we should go back to the hotel. My stomach really hurts."

Nate nods, concerned for his sister and makes the move to go get Connie. "I'll go and get Connie, I'm sure she'll know what to do."

“No, that's okay, there's no need to disturb her. Maybe I just need to go to the bathroom.”

“Are you sure? You really don't look too good, you might've caught something serious.”

“I'm sure, Natey. Let's just go back so I can use the bathroom and lay down...I'm really sleepy from not getting any sleep last night.” she says with an exaggerated yawn.

“Alright, if you say so...”

As they walk back to the hotel, Annie leans on Nate as if about to pass out, making him have to support her to stay on her feet. She asks him if he's doing anything tonight, but he seems confused by her question, and says he knows for sure he's going to sleep tonight, which she should too. Since he didn't say he's doing anything, if he were to disappear or sneak out tonight, she'll know he just lied to her, confirming that what the girl called Mary said to her over the phone is true.
As soon as they make it back, she rushes into the bathroom, making retching sounds to make Nate believe she's really sick.

“I hope she's alright.” says Croakie.

“Yeah, it's not like her to not bring you with her everywhere, even the bathroom.” says Nate, plopping down on the bed in boredom.

As the time flies by, Nate can occasionally hear Annie scream things such as 'Oh my god, it looks like a tail!' 'He stuck it in! That looks so painful!' and 'What is that white stuff?! Why is it coming out of there?!'

“It doesn't sound like she's using the bathroom at all.” says Nate, deciding to knock on the door to check up on her.

“You don't want to come in here! In fact, you should probably stay a good distance away, this is really gross!” she says. Nate pinches his nose, noticing a foul stench he didn't smell until now.

“How long is she going to be in there?” he asks, trying to fan the smell away with his hand.

“I bet the slime toad knows, he is her best friend.” says Croakie.

“Slime toad? I am neither slimy, nor am I a toad! And I don't know anything about this either, I'm just as clueless as both of you! Maybe you drooled on her food and she got sick from eating it, you filthy mutt!”

“I'm not filthy, and I'm certainly not a mutt either! Perhaps it's time we settle the score!” barks Shadow, baring his fangs.

“Oh, you're on, stupid, filthy, wild mutt!” says Croakie, leaping at Shadow, but Nate stands between them to stop them from fighting.

“Guys, please, no violence. There's always tension between the two of you, and I'm getting sick of it. Why don't you settle it in a nonviolent manner?” suggests Nate.

“Oh I'm sure the mutt isn't good at anything other than violence, being a hunter by nature after all.” says Croakie.

“I bet I can beat you at anything! Nate, tell us what we should do so I can finally put him in his place!”

“Okay, okay, since Croakie mentioned hunting, how about the two of you have both a race and a hunt?”

“A race hunt? Now how exactly does that work?” asks the puzzled Croakie.

“You'll see, hang on.” says Nate, knocking on the bathroom door again. “Hey Annie, I'm going to take Shadow and Croakie outside for some fresh air, will you be okay by yourself for a while?”

“O-Okay, that's fine, just make sure Croakie doesn't get lost!” she calls back.

Outside, Nate explains to the Familiars that they need to run from the hotel to the mall and back, and on the way they need to pick up ten seashells. Whoever makes it back with all ten first wins.

“How exactly is this going to help me get along with the toad?” asks Shadow, stretching his muscles for the race.

“Don't worry about that right now, just have fun. Ready? On your marks, get set, go!” says Nate, and the race begins. Shadow runs as fast as he can, while Croakie leaps as far as his powerful legs can take him, using his long tongue to pick up any seashells in sight before Shadow can even get to them.

“Hey, that's no fair!” complains Shadow.

“Haha! Looks like I'll be the one holding the crown in the hand!”

While Croakie thinks he'll win easy, Shadow begins to sniff the ground, and digs in the sand, finding plenty of seashells down there. “It seems you'll have to think again, slime toad!” he says, and starts running again. They both make it back to the hotel where Nate is waiting at the same time, and lay out the seashells for him to count, and it turns out they both got all ten, so Nate declares it a draw.

“What?! A draw? There is no way the mutt could possibly tie with me!” protests Croakie.

“Hey now, didn't you both have fun playing together?” asks Nate.

The two Familiars glance from Nate to each other. “I suppose it was kinda fun. I'll admit, you can hop pretty far, and that tongue of yours is really useful.” says Shadow.

“And I suppose your nose is kind of cool, being able to smell those shells from under the sand, and being able to dig them up with your paws. It would be nice if I could do that.”

“See? You both had a good time together today, so don't you think you could get along like this every day?”

“I can live with that, but...all that running made me hungry.” says Shadow, his stomach growling.

“Ha! It's just like a mutt to-” says Croakie, but then his stomach also starts growling.

“I guess that makes you a mutt as well!” says Shadow, causing all three of them to laugh together. They still have leftovers from the picnic, so they return to the hotel to eat. Nate checks up on Annie again, asking her if she feels good enough to eat, but she tells him that she'll eat later. A few hours later, she finally comes out, plopping herself down in bed, telling them that if Connie asks, to tell her that she's been asleep this whole time. The door swings open, and Connie comes in with crossed arms, closing the door with her foot.

“I guess it's my fault for taking so long at the library, but couldn't you two have at least called me to let me know you were going back to the hotel, so I wouldn't have been looking all over the place for you?”

“Sorry Connie, Annie didn't seem to be feeling very well and said she should go to the bathroom and get some rest. I was going to get you, but she didn't want me to disturb you.”

Connie sits on the bed with Annie, placing the back of her hand on her forehead. “It doesn't feel like she has a fever.”

“She said she just needed to go to the bathroom and get some rest. Did you learn anything new while you were at the library?”

“Regarding Basilisk, it seems that there's a mountain that few people claim to have seen it at the very top of, but no one else has ever made it to the top to confirm this, because the mountain is in a place full of harsh blizzards. In fact, some people have died trying to see Basilisk with their own eyes. It's widely considered that the people that claim to have seen it were just Basilisk worshippers trying to get more people to follow their religion.”

“Even still, it's possible that Basilisk truly is there, so that should be our next destination.” says Nate.

“Are you sure, Nate? This sounds even more dangerous than the desert where we met the Demons.”

“Yeah I'm sure. I'm a king, and if I want to prove myself worthy of ruling the whole world, then I can't be afraid of a little ice.”

“There's something else I found out too. Remember what we read in the newspaper about kids disappearing?”

“Yeah, what about it?”

“It turns out that Familiars have been disappearing as well, and it's been going on for around three decades too.”

“That can't be a coincidence!” says Nate, alarmed at this news.

“That's exactly what I was thinking. I don't know who or why, but someone has been kidnapping children and Familiars for over thirty years, and somehow getting away with it. What could the purpose of this be?”

Shadow runs over to them, tugging on Nate's pants. “Wait, wait! I remember something...when I was a little puppy, I got chased by a man who said something about me being worth more alive...but he was killed by your father. Could this having something to do with it?”

Nate, being reminded of when the Demons showed him the illusion of Shadow's past, sits down, palm on his forehead, trying to get the images out of his head. “Ah man...I've really got to hurry and awaken Basilisk so I can save these Familiars.”

“One more thing. You were right about our books, Nate. The ones we have at the castle are all missing pages. They have happy endings, but ours stop right before the happy parts. And the ones at the library are the exact same books as ours.” says Connie.

“That's...how is that even possible? It's not like someone just ripped the pages out, right?”

“I can't imagine any other possible answer to this. But why would anyone do that?”

Nate grasps his hair in frustration. “I...I can't take this anymore.” he says, overwhelmed by all the thoughts running through his head.

“ Well, since Annie is knocked out sleep and doesn't feel good, let's continue this discussion tomorrow to see what she thinks. Of course, not that I expect to have anything useful to say.” says Connie, so they wrap up their discussion for the day.

When night came, Nate had a hard time falling asleep, being haunted by the thoughts of what happened to Shadow that day. What if all the Familiars that are disappearing are going through stuff just as tragic? He also can't shake out the thoughts of his father ripping pages out of their books to hide the happy parts. His father loves them, he said so himself, so why would he want to do such a thing? There has to be a more logical answer.
“What am I doing...? I'm here goofing off, thinking I can do silly things like have a picnic at the beach, and yet every second I waste, more innocent children and Familiars could be disappearing, and god knows what will happen to them.”

Just then, he hears a loud sound coming from outside, and looks out the window to see what it is, but it's too dark for him to see anything. His sisters are both fast asleep, and he doesn't want to wake them up, so he goes out to see what it is.



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Posted on Sat Apr 04, 2015 8:21 am

Annie.... I don't even want to know what she was doing in that bathroom along with what she was looking at....



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Posted on Wed Apr 08, 2015 9:00 am

But im sure you already know XD

Chapter 17


Shivering from the chills of the night time winds, Nate approaches the massive ship, his arms wrapped around himself for warmth. Right before his eyes is a large ship with the Emerald Empire insignia on it, the noise from the ship's arrival having caused him to come outside to check it out. Now that he knows what the noise was, he knows he should go back to the hotel with his sisters, but seeing the insignia of the empire which he is king of, he can't resist the temptation to know where it's going and why. Seeing Soldiers boarding the ship, he sneaks aboard after the last one.

“I'm sneaking onto my own empire's ship...this is ridiculous.” he says to himself, hiding behind crates in the supply room. After having the thoughts earlier about how his father could have ripped out the pages of his book to hide the happy parts from him, he thinks it wouldn't be farfetched to assume that there are other things being hid from him. Where is this ship going, and how come he, the king, isn't notified of every mission these soldiers are sent on? How would they react if they find out he's aboard the ship? He sighs and shakes his head, feeling like he's just overthinking things. The Emerald Empire surely has nothing to hide from him, but why does he feel so skeptical?

Suddenly, the ship takes off at amazing speed. Everything in the supply room shakes and slides around, some crashing into walls. He tries to remain hidden, but the crates are all over the place now, giving him no place to hide. As everything continues to shake and crash, he can hear the soldiers in the command room start to speak.

“That's a lot of noise going on back there.” says a male soldier.

“Yo Andrew, make yourself useful and go see what's going on back there.” says another male soldier.

“The hell? What makes you think I'm gonna do that slave work? I'm the co-head of you fools, so why don't you do it?”

“Co-head? Weren't you demoted from that position yesterday? Nobody is going to take orders from the son of a traitor anymore.”

“Yeah, it's only a matter of time before your bitch gets demoted too. Actually, why don't you both go do it? Pick up anything that fell over and anything that spilled.” says the other male soldier.

Nate tries to hurry and fix everything, but it all keeps falling down again, and not much longer, Maya comes in the supply room to clean everything up, and gasps when she sees her king.

“My lo-” she says, but Nate covers her mouth with his hand, causing her to blush at his touch.

“Do not let anyone know that I am here. That is a direct order from your king, understood?” he whispers in her ear. She nods, so he removes his hand from her mouth.

“Where is this ship going? What are you soldiers going to do when you get to your destination?” he asks, still whispering.

“We are heading out to an old, deserted island, by Master Sartur's orders. He says that there are still Familiars living on this island, with no way to survive, so we're going to rescue them all and bring them back to the castle.”

Before he can respond to this, the ship comes to a stop, and they arrived at the island. Maya bows to her king and leaves.

“What should I do now? I don't have any way to get back, and the ship's next destination after this is the castle. My sisters aren't going to be happy when they wake up and see I'm missing. I don't even have my phone, so they can't call me...dang I screwed up! Stupid, stupid, stupid!” he says to himself, hitting his forehead three times.
He peeks into the control room, noticing that it's empty. “They must've all departed all ready.” he says, walking towards the wheel. “I could try to drive this...but I don't know how, and even if I managed to make it back to town, then my soldiers would be abandoned here. I can't do that...” after a few minutes of pacing and talking to himself in panic, he decides to depart from the ship and explore the island until he figures out what to do.

Meanwhile, the Soldiers, all armed with special rifles, were having a bit of trouble with their mission.

“What do we do? These Familiars won't listen to us!” says the same male soldier from before, slowly backing up, tightly gripping his rifle as a crab approaches him, pinching it's claws.

“Of course they won't listen to you, stupid! You're pointing a bloody rifle at it's head!” says Andrew, sitting on the ground, enjoying himself to milk from a coconut he shook out of a tree.

“If you think I am going to drop my weapon while these things are coming at me like this, you've lost your mind! Get up and help us out!” him and the other soldiers, except for Andrew and Maya, are now surrounded by several Familiars.

“Andrew, we have to help them...these Familiars have been on this island for so long, they aren't familiar with people, so they won't listen to us.” says Maya, causing Andrew to let out a high pitched laugh.

“What do you want to help these fools for? They always want to pick on us for our positions as head and co-head of the soldiers, yet they don't even know something as simple as that! If you and I were in their position right now, they would just laugh at us, so why don't we enjoy being the ones on the laughing end for once?” he says, handing her a coconut and motioning for her to sit down.

“I suppose so, but...what about our mission? Master Sartur will be furious if we return empty handed.”

The soldier turns around, pointing his rifle at Andrew now, beads of sweat dripping down his face. “If you sit this mission out, you're going to be exiled from the empire! And you...” he says, pointing it at Maya now. “If you don't help either, you can have fun finally losing that title that you've never earned in the first place!”

After gulping down the remains of his coconut milk, Andrew tosses it to the side and stands up, wiping his mouth with his sleeve. “Exiled, huh? You mean I won't have to take orders from the man that killed my father anymore? That sounds great! I'll be sure to sit this one out then!” he puts his hands in his pockets and starts walking off, whistling. Glancing from the other soldiers, and back to him, she follows Andrew, while the soldiers shout in their direction, begging for help.

Still wandering around wondering how he's going to make it back to his sisters, Nate can hear explosive sounds far off in the distance, followed by yelps of pain, and sounds that can only be Familiars. But they sound aggressive, unlike anything he's ever heard from a Familiar.

“What...what is that?” he starts to run in search of his soldiers, but stops when he hears a terrifying scream. It sounds like someone going to war, a scream that seems to travel faster than the speed of time itself, and surround him. The scream itself felt as if it was grabbing him by the throat, gripping him with so much fear, that he could barely control himself. Running in a random direction, just trying to get the hell away, he can now hear a female voice singing.

“Tell me, what is your worst fear?

Is it death? Or is it losing those you love?

Maybe it's the screams that you can hear?

Or perhaps it's all you've been deprived of?

NO! It is I! I am your ultimate nightmare!

“Come face me, I know you wouldn't dare!

When your world is shrouded in darkness, without a glimpse of light...

It is I who makes you cry in the wake of night!

This is my world, and for you there is no gain!

Welcome to my world, silly boy, where I shall give you my gift of pain!”


“It's her...it's definitely her...why?! Why her right now?!” he says to himself, continuing to run as fast as he can with heavy breaths, as if running for his life. Then, with a frightening sight right before his eyes, he forces himself to a halt.

“Did you miss me?” she asks, giggling. She walks over to him, hands behind her back, and pokes his nose with hers, still giggling.

“You...you're...Mary. No, you're Wrath, aren't you?”

“Oh? You actually know my name? Tehehe, that's a cute surprise. Perhaps I should give you a surprise myself?”

“You stole my skateboard and phone, and you tried to kill me by burning down the hotel...why?! What do you want from me?” he asks with clenched fists, his heart racing.

“I stole this?” she asks, riding around him on his skateboard. “I thought this was your gift to me?”

“Give it back! Give me my skateboard and phone back right now!”

“Dear me, how ever so mean of you! This skateboard is mine to keep. I'm sure a king like you has plenty of fun toys other than this.” she says with a soft laugh, hopping off the skateboard and slowly approaching him.

“How...how do you know I'm a king? Who are you?!” he asks as he slowly backs away from her.

“I'm everything you fear, silly little boy. Don't you understand?”

“Everything I fear...? No, I know what you are! You're a Demon, Wrath!”

“Ah, so it's true. You do know about the Demons then. But tell me, is all you see in me a Demon?” she asks, standing uncomfortably close to him now, her face barely an inch from his. Just like before, something about her just feels so familiar to him, but he still can't understand why.

“Look, I don't have time for this. Get out of my way, I have to go check on my soldiers.” he shoves her to the ground and starting to run again. As he runs, Mary appears right in front of him again, and unexpecting this, he bumps into her, knocking them both to the ground.

“Won't you stay and play with me? Please, just for tonight?” she asks, placing her hands in his.

“I said get out of my way!” he swings his fist at her, but she teleports behind him, staring at the ground, her eyes covered by her bangs.

“Hey Nate, have you ever wondered what it's like to play with fire?”

Suddenly, the tree behind Nate erupts in flames, spreading quickly to the rest of them, the searing heat causing him to sweat. Remembering how he put out the flames before, Nate throws some of his darts at them, causing the flames to evaporate.
“You monster...don't you know that those trees were alive, just like you and me? You killed them!” he says, fists balled in rage.

“Oh, they did? All I saw was a bunch of tall ugly things with no color, so I got rid of them. Did I do something bad?” she asks, innocently.

“Aah!!! That's it, I've had enough of you!!!” he says, and starts throwing daggers at her, but just like before, she dodges them with ease thanks to her teleporting ability.

“Oh dear, are you going to punish me for doing a bad thing?”

He throws an uppercut, but she grabs his arm and gives it a violent jerk, making it go limp. She then kicks him in the face, knocking him to the ground, causing him to grimace in pain. She picks up a few of his daggers, and when he looks up, he sees her flick two of them at him, pinning him by his arms to the nearest tree. She walks over to him and gently brushes another one against his cheek.

“What do you think of me, Nate?” she asks, a serious expression on her face.

“What do I think of you? I think that you're a waste of oxygen and that people like you were never meant to exist.” he spits at her. Her eyes seem to flicker in response to the words 'never meant to exist'. She responds to this by cutting his cheek with the dagger, giving him a long but thin cut, which blood slowly drops out of. When she licks the blood off his cheek, his eyes widen and twitch.

“A waste of oxygen, huh...but why am I so worthless? Even though I'm bearing the sins of Wrath now, am I still not worth anything?” she starts to walk away while singing her song again.

“Hey, get back here! You can't just leave me here like this, I have to get back to my sisters!” says Nate, struggling to break free.

She walks back over to him, tracing her finger across his face. “Oh, but don't you think they'll have fun floundering about while trying to find you? Hmm, maybe I should pay them a visit.” she then cups her hand under his chin, and stares directly into his eyes. Just like on the day when he first left the castle, he begins to feel lightheaded, and a dark haze evaporates around his head.

“Stay...away...” he says, as he passes out. Unconscious, he begins grimacing and squirming in place like a worm, occasionally screaming.



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Posted on Wed Apr 08, 2015 9:07 am

I have this feeling now she is a demon....



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Posted on Wed Apr 08, 2015 11:26 am

Well she literally said she's been bearing the sins of Wrath, so yeah, she's a Demon o.o was it not clear enough?



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Posted on Thu Apr 09, 2015 2:07 pm

@Rika Furude wrote:Well she literally said she's been bearing the sins of Wrath, so yeah, she's a Demon o.o was it not clear enough?
 Post #44

It didn't hit me then XDDD



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Posted on Tue Apr 14, 2015 6:07 am

Chapter 18

Andrew and Maya, whom had been enjoying their time on this island while leaving the rest of the Soldiers to handle the mission themselves, arrive at where Nate is.

“M-My Lord!” exclaims Maya, noticing him lying on the ground, thrashing around, grabbing at his hair and screaming.

“Tch, him?! Right when I thought we could have some privacy...” says Andrew, putting his shirt back on, which he had over his shoulder until now.

After a while of Maya trying to wake him up, Nate slowly stops screaming and trashing around, and his eyes slowly open. As soon as he regains consciousness, he swings his fist at her, knocking her to the ground.

“Stay away!” he says, backing up with enlarged eyes, his arms wrapped around himself as if for protection.

“Hey, you bastard! I'm the only one who can put my hands on her!” says Andrew, charging at Nate with balled fists.

“I said stay away!” shouts Nate, with a fiery rage in his eyes. He grabs Andrew's wrist when he tries to throw a punch at him, and throws him against the bark of a tree, livid.

“Ouch...shit! How can a noodle arm like him be so strong? Is this some type of adrenaline rush?!” Andrew rubs the back of his head as he struggles to stand back up, dizzy from hitting his head.

“My Lord, please calm down! It's just us, your loyal Soldiers.” says Maya, slowly approaching the backing up Nate.

“Soldiers...?” he says, seeming to come back to his senses. He gasps when he sees the bruise on Maya's face, realizing he must have hit her. “Why are you two not with the rest of the Soldiers? What happened? I heard explosions, and screaming...”

“Oh, those fools thought it would be a good idea to-” says Andrew, but Maya covers his mouth.

“My Lord, are you alright? You look as if someone, or something attacked you.”

Nate's eyes flicker. “Mary...! Have you two seen her? Where is she? Where'd she go?!”

When he tells them what happened, and explains her appearance to them, Maya gasps. “I knew it, I told you Andrew! I did hear her! I saw her the other day too!”

Nate blinks at her. “You mean you know her? Tell me, who is she?! What does she want from me?!”

“Mary used to be one of the Soldiers, My Lord. She was my best friend, but one day, she just disappeared without a word. We don't know what happened to her, but she always seemed sad and angry about something.”

“I see...but why did she leave the empire, or did something else happen to her? What could've happened to make her angry enough to become Wrath? And why does it all lead down to her wanting to torment me?” Their conversation is interrupted by the loud sound of the ship's engine starting up, then it zooms past, splashing the three of them with water.

“Hey, bastards, get back here!” says Andrew, running after the ship, throwing a coconut shell at it. “Dammit! Those fools left us, and it's all because you're so busy flirting with the king!”

“I-I'm not flirting with him...we're just having an important conversation about Mary.” she says, feeling her cheeks heat up.

“This is bad...this is really really bad...how am I going to get back to Shadow and my sisters now?” says Nate, pacing back and forth. Eventually, he sits, splashing his face with water to calm himself down. Dipping his hands in the water for a second time, he feels something, and then a head peeks out. A whale Familiar.

“Oh, sorry, I didn't mean to disturb you.”

The whale sits there, staring intently at him. “This...there's something different about this human.” it whispers.

Petting the whale, Nate suddenly gets an idea. “Hey, would you be so kind as to let me and my two Soldiers here a ride back to town?”

“He acts as if he can speak to me...” says the whale, still staring at him.

“Oh, I can, haha. I can communicate with all Familiars, and any other life forms it seems.”

“Really? I wasn't aware humanity could do such a thing. I'm not used to being around your kind, so unlike other Familiars, I'm not forced to do whatever you say. But you're rather interesting, and seem nice, so I suppose I can help you out.”

Smiling, Nate stands and waves towards Andrew and Maya. “Hey, Soldiers! I'm getting a ride back by this Familiar, you're both welcome to come along!”

“The hell...was he seriously talking to a whale?! I guess 'The Power' really does exist...” says Andrew.

“I told you it wasn't just a lie to get him crowned king instead of you.” replies Maya.

“Yeah, even still, why should I accept anything from him, after all his family has done to mine?”

Maya rolls her eyes. “Fine, rot alone here by yourself all because you hold a grudge, I don't care. But don't expect me to rot with you.” she says, and goes over to Nate.

“Huh? You're fucking crazy if you think I'm letting you have any alone time with him again!” exclaims Andrew, chasing after her.

The three of them got on the whales back, and it then began swimming at full speed, their hair blowing wildly in the wind. After about half an hour, they arrive back at town. Hopping off it's back, Nate thanks the Familiar, and it swims away.

“Good night, my Soldiers. I've gotta get back to the hotel before my sisters wake up.”

“Tch, what type of king has to sneak out at night to avoid getting in trouble with his sisters? More like a little boy than a king.” says Andrew.

Nate, trying to run back to the hotel, feels a sharp pain in his right arm. He grimaces in pain, grabbing onto his injured arm.

“My Lord, are you okay?” asks Maya, offering him her support.

“I'm fine...it's just a little sore, that's all. Don't worry about me.”

“What's a little sore?” asks a female voice from behind. Glancing over his shoulder, Nate sees Annie and Connie walking over to him.

“I'm screwed...” he whispers to himself, keeping his arm to his side to prevent them from noticing it's hurt.

“Nate, where in the name of God have you been? Do you have any idea how worried I was when Annie woke me up, saying you were gone?” asks Connie.

“Ah, well, I was...” he says, looking over to his two Soldiers for assistance, but Andrew grabs Maya's hand and they both walk off, leaving him on his own.

“Well? Where have you been?” asks Annie this time, her eyes still baggy and now red inside, as if she had been crying.

“I couldn't sleep, so I decided I would just take a midnight walk.” he lies.

Annie grabs him by his shirt collar and pulls him close. She stares at him for a few moments, then slaps him. Connie gasps, and Nate holds his hand to his face in shock. He had been slapped by Connie before, but being hit by Annie was something he never would have imagined.

“Annie...what are you doing?” asks Connie.

Annie completely ignores her. “Do you think I'm stupid or something, Natey? How many times are you going to lie to me? From now on, you're never allowed out of my sight, understood, Natey?!”

“Stop calling me 'Natey'...my name is Nate.” replies Nate, staring at the ground.

Annie blinks, her eye twitching. “Wh-what did you just say, Natey...?”

“I said don't call me Natey!” he shouts.

Annie bites her lower lip, Nate's words triggering her repressed memories.

Twelve year old Nate is sitting on the floor with baggy eyes, holding a dart in hand. His hair is a mess, as if it hadn't been cared for in days. He lets out a sigh, stands, and throws the dart at his calendar. Massaging his temples as if frustrated, he stands, pacing back and forth, picking up darts and throwing them at his dart board.

“Morning, Natey!” says Annie, walking into his room, ducking every time he throws a dart.

“Annie...? When did you get in here?”

“I just did, silly.” she says, ruffling his hair. “Natey, your hair...”

“I told you, stop worrying about my hair! I can take care of it myself!” he says, swatting her hand away.

“But Natey, you said that three days ago, and it doesn't look like you've even touched it yet. Your hair will get matted at this rate...”

“So what? It's my hair, I'll do what I want with it, what's it matter to you?!”

Annie sniffs, then pinches her nose. “You smell like you haven't taken a bath either, Natey.”

“Why should I? I'm locked in here all day anyway, it's not like anyone is going to see me. So who cares?”

“I care. If you're not going to take care of yourself, then I'll just have to take care of you, Natey.” She takes his hairbrush, and tries to start brushing his hair, but he swats her hand away.

“No you won't! I'm tired of you treating me like a little kid, Annie! I'm a king, and I demand to be treated like one!”

“But Natey...”

Nate stares at the floor, hands in his pockets. “Don't call me that.”

“Don't call you what, Natey?” she asks, placing her hand on his shoulder.

Once again he swats her hand away, this time pushing her against the wall. “I said don't call me that! Stop calling me Natey, my name is Nate!” He glares at her with one eye enlarged.

“Why can't I call you Natey? It's not fair that your name doesn't end in the same sound as mine and Connie's...it makes you seem different! But if I call you Natey, then it does end the same!”

“It's not my name! You make me sound like a little kid when you call me that! You always treat me like a little kid too, and I'm getting sick of it!”

“I'm sorry, Natey...” she says, quickly covering her mouth when she realizes she called him Natey again.

“Get out!” yells Nate, pointing to the door.

“Why? Why are you acting this way? This isn't you, Nate. This isn't the little brother I know!” she cries and tries to hug him, but he pushes her again.

“I said get out! This is my room, and if you're going to treat me like a little kid, then just stay out!”


Annie shakes her head, trying to chase the memories away. “You're my little brother, and I'll call you whatever I want, Natey.”

“Both of you just calm down, we'll talk about this in the morning.” says Connie, stepping between them.

“Alright, let's go back to sleep, Natey. Though I'm sure you've done plenty of that already.” says Annie, grabbing her brother by the ear and dragging him back to the hotel.

“H-Hey, let go! That hurts!” Nate pleads, to no avail.

While Annie drags him back to the hotel, Connie stays behind for a while, watching while scratching her chin. “Annie...what has gotten into that girl?” she asks herself, then follows them.



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Posted on Tue Apr 14, 2015 6:19 am

It seems like Andrew hates Nate a lot, but I sense a friendship will happen between them.

Maybe. Maybe not.



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Posted on Thu Apr 16, 2015 12:29 pm

Chapter 19

The next morning, Nate awakes to the sound of snoring, and sees Annie, laying in his bed, her head rested on his shirtless chest. When he gets up, she quickly pops her head up, looking from side to side, her eyes still red and baggy.

“I fell asleep again...?” she whispers to herself, rubbing her eyes.

“Annie, why are you in my bed? And where is my shirt?”

“I noticed the bruise and cut on your face last night, so I decided to check you for wounds.” she replies, tossing his shirt at him.

“...In my sleep? Don't you think that's kind of creepy?” he asks, struggling to put his shirt back on due to the pain in his right arm.

“No, I don't think it's creepy at all. I'm not done with your check up either. Take your pants off.”

“What?! That's really not necessary, I'm fine.” Nate says, backing up.

“How am I supposed to believe you when you won't tell me what happened last night, and you're trying to hide the fact that your arm is hurt?” says Annie, approaching him.

Nate starts running away from her, while she chases him all over the room, causing enough commotion to wake up Croakie and Shadow.

“It's truly a cold world when a frog can't even get a peaceful night of sleep.” says Croakie with a yawn.

“You're telling me...” says Shadow, crawling from under the bed. As soon as he does, Nate and Annie trip over him, and Annie takes advantage of the opportunity by grabbing Nate by the ankle and sitting on his back while he's down.

The door opens, and Connie comes in, the first thing she sees being Annie sitting on Nate's back, trying to unbuckle his belt, while he keeps telling her to get off.

“When am I going to learn to not leave you two alone...” she says, pressing her palm on her face.

“Connie, help me out here!” says Nate. Connie sighs and pushes Annie off of him.

“Hey, I wasn't done giving him his check up! Now what am I supposed to do if he has even more injuries than I thought?!” complains Annie.

“Injuries? What's this about, Nate? Did you injure yourself on your 'midnight walk'?” asks Connie with crossed arms.

“No! I'm fine! She's just treating me like a little kid, like she always does...”

“Oh really? In that case, why don't you try proving me wrong by lifting your right arm above your head, tough guy?” suggests Annie. Knowing he won't be able too, Nate tries it anyway, the pain in his shoulder proving to be too much. “Told you so.” says Annie, rolling her eyes.

“I'm sure it's just a shoulder dislocation, nothing too serious. There's an easy way to fix those.” says Connie, gently placing her foot on Nate's hip. She then started forcefully pulling his arm, causing him to scream in pain.

“Connie...what are you doing?!” asks Annie, placing her hands on her head in shock.

“This will only take a bit.” says Connie continuing to pull his arm, while he continues screaming. After a few minutes, she finally let go, and he quickly grabs his arm, still screaming from the agonizing pain.

“Ouch! What did you do that for?!”

“See if you can lift it up and down five times now.” she replies. He does as she says, and manages to successfully lift his arm above his head five times, although still flinching from the pain.

“I'm sure there was another way you could've done that...” he says, still holding his arm.

“Well that takes care of that, but Nate, how did you dislocate your shoulder in the first place, if you were really just taking a 'midnight walk'?” asks Annie.

Nate stares at the floor in silence, not wanting to tell his sisters what happened because they'll know he snuck out and left the town without them. But if he answers and lies, he knows they'll see right through his lies like they always do, so he figures his best bet is to remain silent about it.

“We don't have time for this right now. Father said he'll be outside shortly and wants us to meet with him, but he says we should keep our faces hidden so that nobody sees who we are.” says Connie, opening the closet and pulling out three hooded jackets. “I got these an hour ago, put them on.” she says, putting her's on and pulling the hood over her head.

“These hoods kind of remind me of the Sin Demons.” says Annie, as she puts hers on.

“Maybe this will be a good opportunity to ask him about the missing pages to my books.” Nate says to himself.

Outside, they can see a massive jet with the Emerald Empire insignia on it, their father standing in front of it, hands behind his back. He smiles and motions them over when he sees the three of them, recognizing them even with the hoods over their faces. When they see him, the girls freeze up, but Nate keeps walking.

“Ah, there you are, my dear children!” Sartur says in a low voice.

“What's going on, Father?” asks Nate, having a hard time keeping his gaze away from the jet.

“I'm headed to the big city to continue spreading the word of King Emerald. So many people all in one place...just what I need. I'm sure you three are getting tired of traveling on foot, so surely you'd like to come along.” he steps aside, motioning them onto the jet.

“Father, there's something I need to talk to you about.” says Nate.

“Ah yes, of course! I expect you would have more information to report. But let's not talk about it here, this is too public.”

Nate notices people behind them pointing at the jet and talking about it as well as saying negative things about the Emerald Empire. He nods, and they walk up the ramp. As soon as they step in, the Soldiers all stand and bow to Nate, then return to their seats, some of them whispering amongst themselves about him. Sartur then walks away, going inside a door that reads ' Laboratory: No Soldiers allowed!'.

“Where'd he go? I still need to talk to him...” says Nate.

“Just sit down, Nate, you'll likely fall if you're standing up when the jet takes flight.” says Connie, tugging on his arm to make him sit.

When the jet took flight at unexpected speed, Nate couldn't help biting his lip and holding onto Shadow tightly. Once it was in the sky, every time he looked out the window and saw how high up it was, he imagined how terrifying it would be if it were to fall. Eventually, he calms himself down and from there the flight seems nice and gentle. During the flight, the Soldiers kept asking him if he needs anything, which resulted in him reclining back with a pillow behind his head while being served a five star meal. He even got a little carried away and had one of them read to him while two massages his feet and back.

“What's taking Father so long? I told him I need to talk to him...” he says, staring out the window, his cheek rested on his palm in boredom. Tired of waiting, he stands and starts to walk towards the door.

“Where are you going Nate?” asks Connie, running her fingers through Annie's hair, whom had fallen asleep in her lap.

“Uh, I just gotta go to the bathroom real quick.” he says. He really did need to go the bathroom, so he goes there first, then afterwards, tries to open the door he saw his father go in, but it's locked.

“Dang it...being the king, shouldn't I have a key or something to let me in anywhere I want?”

While standing next to the door deciding what he should do, Nate can hear mechanical sounds on the other side, as well as occasional screams of Familiars. “What's going on in there?!” He starts banging on the door, and it eventually opens slightly, one of the Wise Men peeking out. Nate forces it open and walks in, shoving the Wise Man aside. Connie, whom had noticed her brother when he start banging on the door, follows him in.

“My Lord, I don't think you sho-” the Wise Man says, but Nate shuts the door on him.

The lab has a green glow to it, with dozens of tubes filled with a strange green liquid, lined up against the walls. There's a Familiar inside each of these tubes, with cords sticking from the outlets in the walls to inside the Familiar's heads. One of the Wise Men, Zart, is dressed in a lab coat and wearing goggles, furiously typing away on a computer, while Sartur stands with his hands behind his back, reading the data coming up on the monitor.

“'Project Unfamiliar'...” whispers Connie, reading the writing on the wall.

Zart pulls the lever on one of the tubes, and the Familiar along with the liquid seem to be flushed down. While going down, loud, metallic sounds can be heard, along with the Familiar screaming. Then it's spit out, landing on the table. The Familiar is no longer the same, half of it's body now completely made of metal.

“Dammit...still no progress. Vincent...how did that fool manage to hack into my data?” says Zart, sliding the Familiar into a plastic bag, like it's just a hunk of scrap.

“Nate, let's get out of here before they notice.” Connie whispers into his ear, but Nate only steps forward with clenching fists and gritted teeth.

“This...just what is the meaning of this?!” he shouts, causing the two Wise Men to turn around.

“M-My Lord..., and Lady Connie...when did you get here...?” Zart takes off his goggles and gets on his knees, bowing before them.

“Ah, I believe I've never properly introduced you to my dear friend Zart here. Not only is he a Wise Man, but also our scientist. He is the mastermind behind all of our advanced technology, and the core reason why our Empire is able to stand in one piece.” says Sartur, patting Zart on the shoulder.

“Yes, that's true. What I'm working on here is Project Unfamiliar. You remember Citrouille, right? She is what we call an 'Unfamiliar'. Through our advanced technology, I have found a way to remove the Convertion from Familiar's, but as you can see, it's quite a process...”

Nate takes the Familiar out of the bag and realizes that it's dead. “You killed it!!! You killed an innocent Familiar!!! Is this really worth it?! Is this truly the only way?!”

“I'm afraid so, My Lord. If we don't remove the Convertion, then the Familiars will always be under humanity's control. This is my life long research. We were going to officially launch the project when the first Unfamiliar, Citrouille was a success, but that traitor Vincent...he destroyed all my blue prints and hacked into my data.”

“I've told him to just give up on the project, that we shall find an even better solution. But he truly believes this will work, and since he has done so much for our empire, it's only fair to respect his decision.” says Sartur, glaring at Connie the whole time, making her shift in place uncomfortably.

“Why...why was I not informed of this? Shouldn't everything, especially huge projects like this be reported to me first, since I'm the king?!”

“We were going to inform you as soon as he was done fixing the data, but it's been taking longer than we had anticipated.” replies Sartur.

“My Lord, I can assure you that this wi-”

“Cancel it.” says Nate in a silent, cold voice.

“W-What? But, my Lord...this is the onl-” says Zart, his hands shaking in shock at being told to cancel his life long research.

“I said cancel it! That is a direct order from your king! You call yourself Wise Men, yet this is the best you could come up with? I've got an idea for you. Take every and any Familiar you see being treated poorly, and bring them to the castle, where they'll be took care of! Once I rule the world, I am going to order that everybody surrender their Familiar's up to the Emerald Empire. There will truly be a new world order...”

“Hahaha, that's my boy! I like it, I really like it! We will do as you command!” says Sartur, smiling wickedly.

“B-But...” complains Zart, but Sartur silences him with a wave of his hand and whispers something in his ear.

Just then they can hear one of the other Wise Men through the speakers. “Attention everyone, the jet is about to land. Please be seated immediately.”

“My my, this flight was rather quick, was it not? We best take our seats back!” says Sartur, ushering everybody out of the lab.

When the jet landed, the Wise Men and Soldiers all got off, although some of them stayed behind to guard the jet. Connie woke Annie up, and they were about to get off as well, but noticed Nate wasn't moving. He was standing in place, staring at the floor, clenching and unclenching his fists.

“Who...who do they think they are? How could they do something like that without informing their king?” he says.

“Why do I keep falling asleep...? Did I miss something?” asks Annie, rubbing her eyes and yawning. Connie explains to her and the Familiars what happened in the lab.

“It's okay, Natey. They cancelled the project and followed your orders, so what's the problem?”

Nate takes three steps towards her, gritting his teeth and his fists trembling. “What did I tell you about calling me Natey? I get it now, nobody respects me as their king just because of my age! You've always treated me like a little kid, but now I see that it's not just you, it's everybody! I am the king, and I demand respect! I don't care if it's you, the Wise Men, or even Father, everyone must obey and report to ME!” He grabs Annie by the collar of her shirt.

“Nate, calm down!” Connie pulls him away from her and holds him down. When she feels that he's calmed himself down, she lets go of him, but as soon as she does, he pushes her to the side and runs off.

“Nate, get back here!” she yells, everybody taking off after him.



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Posted on Fri Apr 17, 2015 2:11 am


“I noticed the bruise and cut on your face last night, so I decided to check you for wounds.” she replies, tossing his shirt at him.

“...In my sleep? Don't you think that's kind of creepy?” he asks, struggling to put his shirt back on due to the pain in his right arm.

“No, I don't think it's creepy at all. I'm not done with your check up either. Take your pants off.”

“What?! That's really not necessary, I'm fine.” Nate says, backing up.

^ Died laughing. Laughing



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Posted on Tue Apr 21, 2015 5:39 pm

Annie is quite the comic relief, isn't she? XD

CH20 is done! I've finally reached 20 chapters!!! I was supposed to post this days ago but obstacles such as my proofreader turning into a kitten and rolling around instead of proofreading, and being constantly told to get off the computer got in the way so yeah

Chapter 20

After running off on his own, Nate quickly got lost in this huge, busy city. With so many tall buildings that look nearly the same as each other, and so many streets, it wasn't hard for him to get overwhelmed. While running through the streets, he nearly got hit by several cars, since he had never crossed a street before. The sidewalks were always full of people, and trying to get through felt like being a fish trying to resist a wave as they all pushed him aside without as little as an apology, just trying to get to their own destinations. Nearly the whole day has passed by, the city now illuminated by many street lights. Now he's sitting on a bench in a dark alley, with his face in his hands. Alone. Tired. Hungry. He nearly dozes off, but is alerted when he hears a very familiar bark.

“Nate, I've finally found you! Thank goodness you're okay!” Shadow jumps in his friends arms, licking his face.

“Shadow...” Nate hugs his friend and petting his fur.

“Let's go back, Nate. Everybody is worried about you. We all split up in this big city trying to find you, and nobody can contact you since your phone was stolen.”

“Tch, what should I go back for? Just so everyone can treat me like a little kid and not give me the respect I deserve? The Wise Men seem to think they are above me, and Annie and Connie just see me as little Natey who can't do anything without the help of his two older sisters.”

“I know how you feel, Nate, but running off like that is not the solution.”

Nate shakes his head. “No Shadow, I don't think you understand. We may be best friends, but that doesn't mean you just always know and understand how I feel.”

Shadow glares angrily at his friend, barks at him, then bites his hand causing him to yelp in unexpected pain. “I do understand! I know because I've felt similar to the way you're feeling right now before! You're not the only one who makes stupid mistakes like this, Nate! I ran off like an idiot one day too! It's...it's why my mother died...” Shadow hops out of Nate's lap, turns his back to him, and takes a few steps, staring at the moon, sorrow in his eyes, as he remembers a day from his past.

It's a cold, rainy night in the forest. Puppy Shadow and his mother are curled up together under a large, thick bush to get shelter from the rain.

“Mama, how come you don't let me explore the forest and make friends with other Familiars?” Shadow asks.

His mother sighs. “Shadow, I've told you many times already. There are creatures in this world called 'humans'. If you let them catch you, they can control you against your will.”

“But mama, don't wolves normally travel in packs? It's always just been me and you, what happened to our pack?”

“They were all caught and took away by humans. I managed to get away, but everyone else wasn't so fortunate. I know you're lonely, a young wolf like you should have other puppies to play with. But it's just too dangerous out there.” she explains, letting out a yawn. She gets up, and starts to walk out of the bush.

“Mama? Where are you going? I'll come too!”

“No, you stay here where nobody can find you. I'm going to go hunt so that we don't go hungry for yet another night.”

“But mama, I don't want to be here all by myself! I'm a big wolf now! I can help you hunt, I can, I can!” he protests, but she just stares up at the moon.

“Shadow, can you see the moon?” she asks.

“Of course! Why wouldn't I be able to see it, mama?” he asks, curiously.

His mother is silent for a short moment, then she howls at the moon. “Whenever I'm not here, if you're worried that I won't come back, I want you to howl at the moon.”

“I can do that, but why howl at the moon? I don't understand, mama.” he says, but his mother doesn't answer, and takes off to start hunting, leaving Shadow there by himself.

“Why does she have to act like I'm still a little puppy? I've been getting big, I know I can help her hunt!  She's defended me from humans before, but I'm sure this time I can take them down myself!” he says, stepping out from under the bush. “I just don't understand! I'm a big wolf now, and I'll show her!” He then runs off deep into the forest.


“After that, well...I've told you what happened from there before already.” Shadow says, finished telling Nate his story. “Every time I look at the moon, I'm reminded of how my own childish stupidity got her killed!” Tears starting running down his cheeks, and he howls at the moon.

“Shadow, I...” Nate doesn't know what to say, and just grips onto his necklace, the only thing he has to remember his mother by, like how Shadow remembers his mother through the moon.

“When she died, I swore to protect, not be protected. And protecting you includes making sure you don't make the same stupid mistakes I did!” Shadow says, continuing. “Running off when you get upset...that's stupid, idiotic, pathetic, childish behavior! If you do childish crap like that, then of course your sisters are still gonna treat you like a small child! Because of you, they've been running around this huge city they've never been before all day, nonstop, no breaks for food or anything, looking for you! What if they get hurt because you ran off, or even worse, get killed, just like my mother?!” Shadow sobs while still staring at the moon.

“...You're right. Heh, look at me...this king is sitting here getting lectured, just like the ignorant child he is.” Nate says, standing up. “Let's go back. Do you know where they are right now?”

Shadow shakes his head. “No, but we'll find them, I know we will!”

The two friends walk deeper down the alley until Shadow comes to a sudden stop. He tells Nate that he smells two people up ahead and has a bad feeling about it, but Nate thinks it might be his sisters, and goes ahead despite Shadow's warning. The two people Shadow was talking about are bald men wearing leather jackets and pants, with motorcycles leaning against the wall. Nate gasps when he sees what they are doing. They both have coyote Familiars and are making them fight each other, while they sit back and watch, chanting 'dog fight!' while drinking booze.

“I'm sorry...I really don't want to do this, but I just can't resist.” pants the first coyote. Both of them are bleeding, covered in deep scratches, and have patches of fur missing, with bite marks on their exposed skin.

“This just isn't right...Oh how I want to just bite these fuckers throats and watch them bleed to death!” says the second one. Against it's will, it pounces on the other coyote, digging it's teeth into the other ones exposed flesh.

“W-What...how...HOW CAN YOU TWO TELL YOUR FAMILIARS TO HURT EACH OTHER LIKE THIS?!!!”

The two men look up and see him, then stand with their hands in ther pockets. “What the fuck's a kid doing here at this hour?!” one of them says.

“Get lost, kid! Haven't you ever heard of a dog fight? Two canines fight till one is knocked out, we bet good money, and whoever was right takes it all! It's just harmless fun!” the other man says.

“Harmless?! Fun?! Are you plain stupid, death, blind, or all three?! Look at them! Does that look harmless to you?! Listen to them! They are apologizing to each other, and even talking about how they wish they could kill both of you for making them do this to each other! This is just no-” Nate says, but while he's ranting, one of the men walks over to him and socks him in the jaw, knocking him off his feet.

“Talking?! The hell is wrong with this kid?! Boy, are you claiming you can speak to these damn things? What the fuck are you, some type of human shaped monster?!”

Monster. Hearing that word reminds Nate of the dream he had where he called himself a monster. He himself doubts his own humanity, so he can't deny that he truly is a human shaped monster. “Y-Yes, I am a monster in the shape of a human. However, if your colors are the true, cold, despicable colors of humanity, then I'm glad I'm not human! I'm disgusted to even be in the shape of your kind!” he gets back to his feet, and swings his fist, but the man backs up, fear in his eye for a second.

“I-It just openly declared itself as a monster! And it's getting aggressive! Let's kick this thing's ass!”

One of them grabs Nate by the shirt, throwing him against a trash can, but before they can do any more, Shadow gets there, finally catching up with Nate.

“Take one step closer to my friend, and I will send you both crawling like a worm from a bird!” Shadow barks like a mad dog, standing in front of Nate.

“Oh shit! What's a wolf doing in a place like this?!” The man glances over to his coyote, but the poor thing passed out already. “Let's get out of here!” They hop on their motorcycles and ride away.

“Are you all right, Nate? I told you I had a bad feeling about it!”

“Ngh...I'm fine.” Nate says, standing back up. “I guess I still haven't learned even after your lecture, huh. Still a total idiot who clearly couldn't defend himself without help. My sisters are right, I can't do anything myself.” He walks over to the unconscious Familiars, and picks one up. “Though, if it weren't for my ignorance, these innocent Familiars could have died. I guess a little stupidity can be worth it every once in a while.”

“What happened to my brethren here?” Shadow asks.

Nate explains to him what happened and tells him that they have to get them somewhere they can be helped and fast. Although Shadow agrees, he knows it's not going to be possible. Nate can barely carry one, so there's no way he can carry two, and Shadow doesn't have thumbs, so it's not like he can carry the second one. Then they hear a familiar voices calling out to them, and see Annie running over to them.

“Finally found you.” she puts her hands on her knees, panting. “Oh Nate, what's getting into you? First you sneak out on your own at night and lie to me about it, then you just run off on your own in this huge city! If you weren't holding that Familiar, I'd...” She notices how badly injured the Familiar he's holding is, then notices the one still on the ground as well. “Uhm...CONNIE!!! I found him!!!”

Connie comes over and quickly notices the two injured Familiars. Nate explains what happened, and tells them that they have to find somewhere to take them before it's too late. Connie says that she saw a shelter for Familiars while they were looking for him, so they agree to take them there. As they walk, Nate can clearly see that his sisters are exhausted from running all over this city to find him, and he feels even guiltier now.

“Uhm...I'm really sorry for making you guys have to search all over for me.” He apologizes.

Annie rolls her eyes. “Save the apologies for later, I'm not forgiving you until you receive proper punishment for your actions.”

“P-Punishment...? What are you talking...?” asks Nate, shocked.

“What are you talking about, Annie? For the past few days, you've been acting like a completely different person.” says Connie.

“Oh come on, Connie, you know he can't just get away with something like this. Natey, for part of your punishment, you won't be getting any dinner tonight.”

Nate blinks in surprise. “W-WHAT?! You're just joking, right? I haven't ate all day!”

“You expect me to believe that? I'm sure you took her out to a fancy restaurant, like any rich guy would do.” says Annie. “You're going to have to tell me everything eventually, or I'll force it out of you.”

“Her...? Her who? I think you've been hit on the head and gone coo coo.” replies Nate with a soft chuckle.

“You're only putting yourself in a worse position, little Natey.” she says, so Nate shuts his mouth, and they continue their walk in silence.

***

“Welcome to th-...” says the girl who works at the shelter, but stops when she sees the condition of the coyotes. “Oh my god! What happened here?!”

“They were being forced into something called a 'dog fight', but my little brother here saved them before it was too late.” explains Connie.

The girl gasps. “A dog fight? That's illegal!” she exclaims.

She talks to Annie and Connie for a while, explaining to them what a dog fight is and how it's illegal. When she's done going on and on about how wrong it is, they hand the coyote over to her, then she walks over to Nate to take the other one from him, but he doesn't even seem to notice her. He's staring at all the caged Familiars, seemingly mesmerized.

“Why are they caged like this...? Familiars are meant to roam free, not be caged! Hang on guys, I'm gonna get you out of there!” he says, trying to pry one of the cages open to no avail.

“But they can't survive out on their own, that's why they are here in the first place.” The girl says. “I know they seem sad and lonely now, but it won't be long until someone adopts them.”

“So you're saying that you 'save' these Familiars, only to put them in the hands of humanity?! Where they will be controlled against their will?!”

“Nate.” says Connie, placing her hand on her brother's shoulder. “It's going to die if you don't give it to her. You don't have any other choice.”

As much as it pains him to do so, Nate hands the Familiar over to her. Whatever fate awaits this tortured Familiar, it can't possibly be worse than dying here, can it?

“Thank you, I promise to make sure they find the best homes possible.”

***

“So, Nate.” Annie says, sitting on her bed in the hotel room they rented. “Are you going to tell me what you really did last night?”

“I've told you already...I was ju-” he lies, avoiding looking her in the eye, but stops when she suddenly starts crying.

“Stop lying to me! Why can't you just tell me the truth?! I already know you went on one of those 'date' things with your girlfriend! Why do you feel the need to hide this from me? I thought...I thought we were...” she says, her sobs too uncontrollable to say any more.

“'Date'...'girlfriend'...? What are these things you speak of?”

“DON'T PLAY DUMB WITH ME!!!” she shouts, getting up and slapping him across his face. “I know what you did! You want to know how? Because the girl you were with called me on YOUR phone to confirm that you were both still going on a date that night!”

“Mary...so SHE'S the reason Annie has been acting so strange lately! What does she want from me...?!” whispers Nate, slamming his fist down on the table. “Annie, you're right about one thing. I have been lying to you about what happened, and for that I am sorry. But you're wrong about one thing...I was not on a 'date', whatever that is, and Mary is not my 'girlfriend', once again, whatever that is!”

“Th-then...what really happened, a-and...why did you keep lying about it...?” Annie asks, hiccupping between her words, wiping her tears away.

“I honestly don't know why I felt the need to lie, I guess I didn't want you and Connie to know how stupid I am...but I truly am just an ignorant child, aren't I?” He says. “That night, I heard a strange noise, and I didn't want to wake you two up, so I checked it out myself. It turned out to be one of the empire's ships, and I was curious, so I snuck aboard, and got lost. That girl, Mary, she's Wrath. The one who stole my phone and skateboard, and burned down the hotel back at the desert. I didn't do anything with her, she ATTACKED me.” he explains.

Annie sniffs. “I-I thought she was just trying to mess with my head at first, but she said that she didn't steal your phone, that you left it by mistake and she was holding it for you...she said she's your girlfriend and that you two had a date planned for the next night, so I was so confused...I didn't want to believe her, but then you disappeared the next night, so of course I did!”

“I see...so she fed your head with a load of lies, and then because of my stupidity, you believed her. Idiot, idiot. I'm such an idiot...” says Nate, hammering his fist on his forehead.

Annie hugs him tight, and buries her head in him, crying on his shoulder. “I didn't want you doing those type of romantic things because I...I...”

“Because you what?” he asks, rubbing her back in attempt to comfort her.

“Because I...I think I love you, Nate.”

Nate, not understanding, raises his eyebrow. “Of course you love me, I'm your brother, and I love you too.”

“Silly little Natey. Your innocence is so cute.” She says, giggling and running her fingers through his hair.

The two siblings sit hugging each other for a while, until the sound of Nate's stomach growling disturbs their moment.

“I don't suppose now you'll take back your word on me not being able to have dinner tonight?”

“Nope! No food for you, Natey! I'm still upset you lied to me, you know...”

“Well, what do I have to do for you to forgive me? As much as I wish I could, I can't change the past.”

A slick smile spreads across his sister's face. “Get on the floor, on your hands and knees.”

Wondering what she has planned, he does as she says. “Okay, now what?”

She takes off her socks and extends her foot to his face. “Kiss my feet, maybe then I'll forget you lied.”

“Kiss your foot...? Are you serious...?”

She giggles. “Oh? Would you rather kiss me somewhere else?” she asks, lightly blushing. “Come on Natey, you can do it. Or perhaps I should come up with something even more humiliating for you to do?”

Not wanting to imagine what else his sister could possibly have in mind, Nate shakes his head, then takes her foot in his hand, and brings his lips close. Right when his lips are about to make contact with her foot, the world around him is suddenly nothing but darkness, and Annie is no longer there.

“What's going on?! Where am I?” he asks, looking around in panic.

“Come on now, are you really going to stoop so low as to kiss her foot?” asks a mysterious voice from behind.

Nate turns around but doesn't see anyone. “Hey, show yourself! What did you do, where's Annie? Where am I?!”

“You're a king, are you not? It's truly undignified for a powerful king like you to be on his hands and knees with a foot to his mouth, like a pet dog.”

“My own stupidity hurt my sister's heart! To make up for what I've done, I'll do anything. Screw my arrogance, pride, and dignity!”

“Such a pity. And to think I thought that you were the one.”

In the blink of an eye, Nate is back in his world, and feels as if that was all a short dream. Just like before, her foot is still in his hands and his lips about to make contact with it.

“Well? Are you going to kiss it or not?” Annie asks with crossed arms, seeming to have been waiting for a while.

“Uh, yeah.” he says, then takes in a deep breath, and kisses her foot.

“Oh my god, you actually did it!” says Annie, rolling over laughing. “I can't believe you fell for that!”

“What? Are you saying you would've forgave me even if I hadn't kissed your foot?”

“Of course, silly Natey! You know I could never stay mad at you!” replies Annie, still laughing hard.

Nate spits on the floor. “Your foot tasted like rotten garbage, I'm going to have to scrub my tongue with soap.” He spits on the floor more, then acts as if he's going to vomit from kissing her foot.

Annie quickly sits up, no longer laughing. “That's not funny, Nate! My feet are squeaky clean, there is no way they taste like rotten garbage!” she says, throwing a pillow at him.

Now he's the one rolling over laughing. “Oh my god, I can't believe you fell for that!” he says, mimicking her.

Annie smiles and chuckles. “I guess that makes us even now.” she says, then yawns. Both of them are tired, so they get in their beds and turn out the lights. “Natey?” she says once in bed.

“Yeah? Something wrong?”

“Sleep with me tonight.”

Nate nods, and gets in the same bed as her, the two of them cuddling up together. No less than five minutes later, they hear a loud explosion from outside, and they both jolt up in surprise. Connie, whom was in the shower this whole time, rushes out of the bathroom with a towel wrapped around her body.

“What the hell was that noise? Are you two okay?” she asks, flicking the light on.

“Y-Yeah, we're alright.” says Annie, clinging onto Nate.

Nate takes a look out the window, and he can see distant flames and smoke, which causes him to remember the hotel burning down and how Leah's mom was trapped in there all by herself.

“We have to go see what happened.” he says, jumping to his feet and rushing to the door, but Connie grabs him by the shoulder.

“Hold on Nate, it might be dangerous. We might be at our safest right where we are, since the explosion came from a good distance away.” she says.

“Safe? Here? Connie, don't be ridiculous! I'm sure this was caused by Wrath, just like she did before! For all we know, she's going to burn this whole city down until she gets to us!”

“I agree with Nate, I'm really scared right now, and I don't want to be inside another building when it burns down...” says Annie, going over to Nate's side, picking up the sleeping Shadow for him.

“Alright, alright, you make a fair point...just let me put something on first...” Connie says when her towel nearly slips off her body.

Nate and Annie nod, so she goes back in the bathroom and, not wanting to waste any time, just throws on her nightgown, not bothering to put anything on under it, or even put on a pair of socks.

“Alright, let's go.” she says, and the three of them rush out of the building.



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