Archive for January, 2010

Chapter 2: The Assassins

January 30, 2010

I thought I might release this a bit early. No point in being liberal about blog release dates. 😛

So, just a word on this. I think it’s less cheesy than the first chapter, but I think there are still some cheesy parts to it. However, I like this chapter due to the fact that new techniques and challenges are revealed here.

Oh, one last thing. Well, a couple. First, I’m up to Chapter 7, right now, so I might speed things up a bit. Second, I have a best friend who happens to be doing a fiction of his own, much like mine. He’s read the first six chapters and really enjoyed them. I’m hoping that maybe, I could post his Tiger Blade stories here and also have a crossover. Ok, maybe that was a bit more than a couple. Anyway…

Chapter 2: The Assassins

“Animus, you have done well, despite facing bleak circumstances. I now grant you and your team a special medal of honor: a Great Deed medallion. These medals are not just awards. Once you have gathered eight of these medallions, your true powers will be unleashed, just as they were unleashed in your previous battle. Now, it is time for you to wake up. Your friends are waiting for you.”

Animus woke up to find himself back in his apartment. Melina was by his bed, keeping him company. The morning sun shone through the window.

“Melina, you’re alright. Are Dirk and Mentivis okay?” Animus wanted to say more, but having been unconscious for a while, he was quite weak. However, he could not help but smile at seeing Melina by his side.

“They’re fine, Animus, thanks to you. Even when I died, I could still see you crying for me. And I could feel that you loved me. Right now, you need to rest. Dirk and Mentivis are working on our new home. We’ll be able to visit them tomorrow.”

Animus went back to sleep, thankful of the good news. The next day, Animus and Melina went to the site of the team’s new base. Dirk was looking over at his blueprints, giving Mentivis instructions, and Mentivis guided the hired workers to carry out those instructions. Dirk looked up from his blueprints to find Animus and Melina standing in front of him.

“Yo, Animus! You’re up! We thought we lost you for a moment, there. Thanks a million for keeping him company, Melina. No doubt Animus would wake up sooner if he knew you were with him.” Dirk let out a mischievous grin.

“Hey, that’s not funny, Dirk! We’re just friends!” Animus responded, annoyed by the remark.

“We all saw you crying when you saw Melina get killed. I could only assume you had feelings for her.” Dirk admitted.

“Dirk…” Animus could say nothing. All he could do is blush out of embarrassment. Melina looked at Animus and giggled.

Dirk continued, “Oh, Mentivis wanted to talk to you about something.” Dirk turned his attention over to Mentivis, who just finished helping the workers attach a metal wall to the side of the incomplete structure. “Hey, Mentivis! Animus is here!”

Mentivis walked over to Animus and talked to him about the Great Deed medallions. “Good to see that you’re up. We were worried for a moment.”

“So, what happened since the time I was fighting that demon?” Animus asked, curiously.

Mentivis explained, “When I was killed by that demon, I thought that was it for me. However, an angel came to me and told me that it was not yet time. I was to wait next to my body until I was able to return to it. Next moment, I saw the angel and another assist you in defeating that demon. I remember one angel saying that they are not allowed to fight against the demons, themselves. However, these two had been given permission to assist Animus. When the battle was over, I returned to my body, to find a medallion in my hand. That night, the angel spoke to me, explaining the role of the medallions. My guess is that our tasks will be finished, once we earn eight of them. However, the angel also spoke of our true powers. I’m guessing that we will need those powers to fight a foe much bigger than that demon.”

“It seems you guys have your hands full building the base. Will it be okay if I volunteered to keep on the lookout for attacks?”

Mentivis answered, “I think it would be better if you took a break from fighting, for now. But, if an attack does occur, do not face the attack alone. Come immediately to us.”

Animus left the construction site to return to his apartment. Melina stayed behind to provide refreshments to the workers. Three days later, ten demons appeared on the news.

“We want the Knight in Shining Armor. Give him to us, and there will be no harm.”

Animus immediately turned off the TV and set out toward the rest of the team. “This is really bad. They’re solely after me, this time. I’m definitely going to need my friends for this.”

While heading for the construction site, Animus was caught off-guard by one of the demons. This demon was a bit different from the previous ones. This demon wielded two swords as opposed to one. He also wore a dark helmet that matched his armor. “You! You’re that knight! Your blood will spill for slaying General Atraledo!”

Animus quickly unsheathed his sword and prepared to fight defensively. “(Ok, two swords. I’ll have to go for long range attacks if I want to survive this.)” Animus distanced himself from the demonic assassin and started throwing energy blasts, only to have them deflected by the swords. The demon rushed at Animus, striking him with his swords, cutting off pieces of his armor and injuring him in the exposed areas on his chest.

“Aah!!” Animus grasped his wounds in pain. However, before the demon could strike another blow, Animus quickly fired an energy blast to his face, temporarily blinding him. Quickly, Animus moved a small distance away, sheathed his sword, and held his left arm with his right. Animus then focused a tightly-condensed ball of energy into the palm of his left hand. “CLUSTER BLAST!” Animus fired the ball of energy at the demon, destroying his swords and most of his armor. Quickly, Animus used the opportunity to strike the finishing blow with his sword, destroying the demon.

Animus was struggling with his wounds as he flew towards the construction site. When he arrived, the other warriors quickly stopped their tasks to support him.

“Quick! Get Melina! Animus is injured!” Dirk shouted. Melina quickly arrives and heals Animus, closing the wounds and fusing the pieces of armor back together.

“What happened?!” Mentivis asked.

“I just saw on the news. There are ten demons looking for me. I managed to destroy one of them, but his skills rival mine. Taking on the other nine isn’t going to be easy,” Animus explained.

“Guys! I just heard over the radio. Two demons are keeping Kariba City hostage,” Dirk interrupted.

“Kariba City is across the ocean. You’d think they would strike closer to Animus’s position. I smell a trap.” Mentivis was concerned about the situation. However, he quickly thought of a plan. “Animus, are you willing to be bait?”

“I guess I have no other choice, since they’re going after me,” Animus sighed.

“Here’s the plan. Animus, you will fight the demons head-on in Kariba City. Dirk and Melina, you two will be on the ground with me. Kariba City is in a forested area, so we’ll have plenty of cover. We will be watching the battle from below, in case the remaining demons appear,” Mentivis explained.

“So, what if not all of the demons show up?” Animus asked.

Mentivis answered, “Let’s hope that doesn’t happen. Considering your last fight, fighting more than two demons at once is a risk we don’t wish to take. You’ll have to put all of your effort into the battle.”

The warriors headed for Kariba City, with Animus in the air and the remaining team on the ground. As soon as Animus entered the city, the two demons launched an attack. Animus quickly unsheathed his sword and fired energy blasts from his free hand, while keeping a safe distance from the two demons. The demons managed to dodge most of the blows, but Animus managed to blindside them in the process, injuring one of the demons.

“Send in the reinforcements!” The other demon shouted. Immediately, two more demons appeared on either side of Animus.

“Oh crud. Not good,” Animus said, surprised.

“Now!” Mentivis and Dirk caught the two demons and destroyed them, leaving only the original two that held the city hostage.

“Ok guys, let’s finish these two knuckleheads!” Dirk shouted.

The three warriors dashed at the two demons with their weapons and destroyed them, as well.

“Whew. That was fun. Catching them by surprise was more effective than I thought,” Dirk said with a grin.

“Wait a second. Where’s Melina?” Mentivis wondered.

Suddenly, three demons appear, holding Melina hostage. “If you want the girl alive, follow us,” one of them said. The three demons carried Melina north of the city. The three warriors followed the demons to an abandoned castle. Melina was taken into the castle when the warriors arrived. As they got to the entrance, two demons appeared.

“The knight goes alone. If he gets any help, the girl is as good as dead,” one of the demons said. Afterwards, both of them entered the castle.

“It looks like we have no choice. If we try to fight them, we lose Melina. Animus, it looks like it’s going to be just you, this time. Stay confident,” Mentivis said.

“He’s not going to lose to a bunch of cheap shots. He’ll be fine,” Dirk told Mentivis.

“I’m not coming out without Melina. Make sure to stay here, in case I need help later,” Animus answered. He then walked into the castle. As he walked through the main hallway, he found an open trap door with a ladder leading into what seemed to be the catacombs of the castle. “They must’ve gone down here. I’d better keep on my guard.” After Animus climbed down the ladder and walked through another hallway, he found himself in a large room. As he entered, the doors slammed shut, and the walls began to close in from both sides. “Oh, great. If I don’t act quickly, That’ll be it for me.” Animus quickly started firing at the door in front of him with energy blasts. However, the door was solid stone and did not budge. Animus closed his eyes and prayed for a solution. All of a sudden, his attention turned to a skull lying among many others on the wall that was moving towards him. He quickly moved toward the wall and shattered the skull. The walls slowly returned to their original positions, and the doors flung open. He proceeded onward to his destination.

As he continued to walk along the corridor, he saw an endless series of passageways branching out from the corridor. “Ok, one of these will lead me forward. I have no time to play guessing games.” Animus again closed his eyes and prayed for a solution. His attention immediately turned to a narrow slit in the ground. He thrusted his sword into the slit and suddenly, the doors that led to the different passageways closed and the wall that was at the end of the branching passageways burst open. Beyond the wall was a stairway leading deeper into the catacombs. Animus continued onward.

While he descended the stairs, the stairs suddenly stopped, and before Animus was a great chasm. The pit was so deep, the bottom could not be seen, and the door that led deeper into the catacombs lay on the other side. “No problem. I’ll just fly across.” However, Animus could not lift himself up to fly. He found that his feet were bound to the stairs. “I guess it’s time to do it again.” Animus closed his eyes a third time and prayed for a solution. He opened his eyes and unsheathed his sword again. He placed it on the slit that seemed to run down the middle of the steps, and his feet, though still somewhat bound to the floor, were free enough to be used for walking. He dragged the edge of his sword along the slit, even beyond where the steps ended and the chasm began, and Animus found himself walking on unseen ground. As he continued to walk on the unseen path, he noticed that the path began to twist and turn. “No doubt, if I had just walked, I would’ve fallen,” he thought. He continued to drag his sword along the now invisible path across the chasm until he reached the other side, where the slit ended. Animus sheathed his sword, gave thanks, and walked down the next hallway.

Animus walked down the hallway until he entered a large dark room. As he walked into the room, the torches along the wall lit, revealing Melina and the demons. The demon in front of Melina began to speak.

“Good to see that you made it this far. But you will not escape this place.” All of a sudden, the door slammed shut behind Animus, leaving him trapped in the room with the three demons holding Melina hostage. “Your blood will be spilled as payment for your defiance against us.” All of a sudden, two demons appeared on either side of Animus. The demon that was talking unsheathed his sword. “If you think you stand a chance against the five of us, feel free to make an attempt to defeat us.”

(This looks bad. But, I must continue to be faithful. My duty as a spirit warrior should not end here. My Lord, please, show me the path to victory.) Animus’s prayer was interrupted when the demon with the sword and the two demons on either side of Animus began to lunge at him. Immediately, Animus rushed forward, catching the two demons by surprise, and flew at the demon with the sword, head-on. As Animus approached the demon, he stepped onto the ground and quickly jumped up, just as the demon attempted to slice Animus with his sword. Immediately, Animus put his fists together and struck downwards onto the demon’s head, knocking him flat. Animus continued to rush at the two demons still holding onto Melina. As he approached the demons, he positioned his hands in front of him and fired energy blasts at both demons, blinding them with head shots as he reached Melina.

“Quickly, Animus. Stand next to me.” Melina created a special barrier around the two warriors.

“This barrier won’t help much. Hang on. I’m going to blast through the ceiling.” Animus began to position his arms above him. “ENERUGI!!!” As he finished gathering energy, he unleashed it at the ceiling. “KOUSEN!!!” The large beam of energy blasted into the ceiling, causing rocks to fall down around Animus and Melina. The demons had no choice but to back away. After about quarter of a minute, the rocks stopped falling and the beam disappeared. Moonlight had shown through the newly formed hole. Without a second thought, Melina dropped the barrier, and the two warriors flew straight out of the castle.

Meanwhile, during Animus’s trek through the catacombs, Dirk and Mentivis waited outside for Animus’s return. Mentivis continued to stare into the castle’s entrance.

“Yo, Mentivis. You worrying over Animus, or something? As far as I know, he should be fine,” Dirk spoke.

“I’m creating a mental map of this place. I want to see how far down the demons are. Aha! There we go.” Mentivis managed to finish analyzing the castle’s interior. He also managed to pick up Animus’s, Melina’s, and the demons’ locations. “He appears to be about halfway into the castle. However, unless my mind is having trouble picking up a certain area, there’s a huge chasm up ahead. Melina and the demons are just beyond that chasm. All five of them are in that one room. I sure hope Animus manages to rescue Melina. It appears that the demons are awaiting an ambush opportunity.”

While Mentivis continued to trace Animus’s movements through the castle, he suddenly felt a sharp jolt of pain rush into his head. “ARGH!! What was that?!” Mentivis found himself on the ground, holding his hands to his head.

Dirk immediately got up to assist Mentivis. “Mentivis! You ok?!”

“Augh. I feel a little better, now. But man, I lost my map. One of the demons must’ve detected my scan.”

“How could they? How can they detect something like that?” Dirk pondered.

“Imagine two computers synchronizing information with each other. When I scan a living being, a nerve in its brain sends out a response signal that returns to my brain. One of the demons must have the ability to send a painful signal through that nerve. Animus would not have detected it, because I only scanned his position. I was currently scanning the demons for information on how to attack. Unfortunately, they felt the scan and countered it. Now, Animus is on his own.”

Some time later, a large beam of energy suddenly shot out of the castle.

“What the heck? What’s going on in there?!” Dirk asked Mentivis.

“It’s Animus. He’s escaping from the castle! Dirk, quickly. We’ll need to assist Animus and Melina as they arrive.”

As the two approached the beam of energy, the beam slowly dissipated, and Animus and Melina appeared from the gaping hole that was made from the beam.

“They’re right behind us! Get ready!” Animus shouted.

A few seconds later, the five demons emerged from the same hole, swords unsheathed. Dirk and Mentivis quickly sprang into action. Mentivis and Dirk each managed to kill off two of the demons with their weapons, while Animus and Melina engaged the fifth demon. He did not last long, however, and soon was killed along with the four other demons. Mentivis quickly approached Animus and Melina after the battle.

“Animus, I was scanning the demons, and the name “Corrunderus” came to my mind. Have either of you heard the name?”

Melina responded, “I heard one of the demons saying the name. None of the demons there seemed to have that name. It might be someone they work for.”

Dirk interrupted, “Well, we can’t worry about that, now. We need to finish the base while we still have time.” The four warriors then returned to the island where their base was being constructed.

The next day, Animus returned to the base, now looking even more complete than before. He walked up to Dirk, who was, as always, examining and re-examining his blueprints on the base. “Morning, Dirk!”

Dirk looked up from his blueprints to return the response. “Morning, Animus! Check this out! Most of the work to be done is the interior, so if things go well, we could be done by next week! Oh, there is one thing we’re missing, though. As I was examining some of the remains of the demons’ armor, I noticed that it is impervious to some metals. However, one metal does cut through demonic armor. It’s called ‘Diathesium’. This metal is found deep within the caves in the Turnum Mountains. The sample I have here was given to me by a chemist who deals with rare metals like these.”

“So, do you know where I can find one of these caves?” Animus asked.

“Yes. One of them is south of Vorca City. The cave is unreachable by foot, and the only people who have gone there were scientists sent by the local government to do research. You should do fine getting there, since we can all fly, anyway. Here, take this sample. It should help you find the metal.” Dirk handed Animus the Diathesium sample, and Animus quickly flew toward the Turnum Mountains.

Some time later, Animus arrived at the cave perched on a cliff of the Turnum Mountains. As he walked in, the cave was quickly getting darker and darker. Animus held out his hand and released a small amount of energy but did not let it leave his hand. A half hour later, he saw an unusual purplish metal. He checked the metal with the sample he held in his other hand and confirmed that this metal was indeed Diathesium. With a few short energy bursts, he freed the metal from the surrounding rock and carried it towards the entrance of the cave. As he neared the entrance, the light from the outside was bright enough to disperse the energy that was glowing in his hand. However, a few seconds later, several demons ambushed Animus and blocked the entrance of the cave.

“Your blood will spill for Lord Corrunderus!” one demon shouted. Suddenly, all of the demons rushed toward Animus. Animus quickly unsheathed his sword, but because he was carrying the Diathesium, he was at a bad disadvantage. As soon as the demons closed in on Animus, four radiant beams of energy burst from the entrance of the cave. Most of the demons were injured from the beams, but all of the demons began to focus on the source of the surprise attack.

“Melina! Quick! Help me get this out of here!” Animus exclaimed.

Melina unsheathed her two daggers and rushed at the demons while Animus used the distraction as an opportunity to slay two of them. After some fighting, Melina and Animus, though weary from the battle, finished off the last of the demons.

“Whew. I don’t know what I would’ve done if you hadn’t shown up in time. Thank you, Melina.”

As the two warriors walked out of the cave, Animus and Melina talked about the close call. “How were you able to find me here?” Animus asked, curiously.

“I was helping Mentivis with the construction, and I got this pain in my chest, and it wouldn’t go away. Then, I kept getting these pictures flashing in my mind. Each one, I kept seeing you in pain. They were so powerful, I started crying. Then, I felt this weird tug at my heart. I felt like I was being pulled a certain direction, so I followed that direction until I arrived here. That’s when I found you and those demons.”

Animus felt a tear form under his left eye. “Melina, I’m so sorry. I didn’t mean to worry you so much. How about I take you out to dinner, somewhere? I have this feeling… Oh, I’m too embarrassed to say it.”

“It’s ok, Animus. I know you’re in love with me. Ever since the moment we met, I could feel your heart so much more powerfully than with anyone else’s. I didn’t know what it was, at first. But then, I remembered those two moments. The one where you cried for me during the battle against that powerful demon, and the time you rescued me in that castle. I felt your heart crying out for mine.”

Animus’s faced turned red upon hearing this. “Man, that sure beats what I’ve been thinking of saying. But yeah. I still remember when you helped me recover after that big fight against that demon. It felt so good to see you right there next to me. No experience I’ve ever had in my life came close to that moment.” While lost in thought, Animus suddenly remembered the Diathesium in his hands. “Oh! We need to get back to the base. Dirk’s probably wondering about us.”

The two headed back to the base, where they handed Dirk the Diathesium. When Mentivis asked about Melina’s sudden leave, they did say that Melina felt the need to go there, but they kept most of that moment secret. That night, Animus and Melina went out to dinner, and they shared many thoughts with each other. A week later, the base was finally finished, and the warriors moved in.

Chapter 1: The Gathering of Spirits

January 2, 2010

So, here it is, the first chapter. I’m a little embarrassed to show it, as some parts seem to sound cheesy. But, I promise the later chapters are much better.

Chapter 1: The Gathering of Spirits

“Well, just one more class and I’ll be heading home for the day. As awesome as learning about supply and demand is, I’m looking forward to a well-deserved nap,” Keith thought to himself as he walked to the University Center for lunch. Keith bought his sandwich – a footlong italian meat sub with honey mustard – and sat down at the table he felt most comfortable sitting at. Suddenly, there was a loud bang coming from behind him, along with screams. No sooner did Keith attempt to look behind him when he was jerked up from his chair with his left arm held to his back and a gun to the side of his forehead.

“Don’t anybody move, unless you’re willing to lose a classmate!” yelled the gunman. Keith stood still, wondering how to get out of the situation unharmed. All of a sudden, a loud crash came from the right side of the university center. Keith immediately went to action, first knocking away the gunman’s firearm, a semi-automatic pistol, which loosened the grip on his other arm long enough to free himself, then releasing a barrage of punches and kicks, and finally finishing him off with a strong, well-executed side kick, launching the gunman through a nearby window, shattering the glass and leaving him outside, in great pain from the glass shards that have embedded into his back. When Keith realized what he had done, as his recent actions came solely from adrenaline rush, he had mixed feelings of amazement and fear, and the first thing he did was run straight out of the University Center. As he made his way toward the parking lot where his car was, he suddenly collapsed. All he could see was darkness.

“Keith, you have been chosen for a great purpose.” Keith could hear the mysterious voice but could not make out its owner.

“The time has arisen, and the power that lay dormant within you has fully developed. You are able to accomplish the task at hand.” Keith could not move from where he was, nor could he speak, but he realized that his thoughts can be used to communicate with this unknown speaker.

“Power that lay dormant within me? The task at hand? What is going on?”

The speaker continued. “You have great courage. The power that has fully developed will enable you to do things that mankind can only dream of. You are a warrior, with the strength of thousands. The energy flowing through you can be channeled to defeat your foes. You can even go so far as to say that you are more than a conquerer.”

Keith was excited and puzzled by this answer. “Am I going to be some sort of superhero, like in those comics?”

“Yes,” answered the voice. “But there is the task that lay before you, that requires the use of your new abilities. Demonic forces have made themselves visible to human eyes and are going to war against those who resisted the god of this world. Their strength is like ours. However, by making themselves visible in the physical realm, we may no longer attack, as we are part of the spiritual realm. This is where you come in. You have the power to overcome these demonic forces and save nations.”

“Then you are-”

The voice interrupts. “Yes. We are celestial beings. We serve our Master and His heirs.”

“Will I be alone in this great task? Will I have friends who will help me?”

“You will not be alone. There are three others who will join you. They share the same task, but they are given different abilities. Combined, the demonic forces will fail in their mission. You will be waking up soon, and it is time for me to return. Farewell, spirit warrior.”

Keith woke up to find himself in the hospital, in a bed. He finds a doctor standing next to him.

“Well, hello. Did you enjoy your nap?”

Keith stared at him with a blank look on his face. “How long was I out?”

The doctor answered, “Oh, about an hour, hour and a half, maybe. There did not seem to be any injuries, so you may have collapsed from pressure. You’re a hero to those students. If it weren’t for you, people may have been killed. To show their appreciation, the university paid for your hospital stay. And since you have no injuries to treat, you are free to leave at any time, although I would recommend that you stay in bed for maybe a few more hours, to get rid of any remaining stress.”

“Thank you, doctor. I’ll get plenty of rest.” Keith closed his eyes and fell fast asleep.

A few hours later, Keith woke up to find the news on TV. However, he was shocked to find that the news was showing widespread devastation. He immediately knew it was time.

“Uh oh, I forgot to ask the celestial being how to use these powers,” Keith thought.

“Just concentrate, and imagine yourself as a superhero,” was the response that seemed to come from nowhere. Keith stood up in his room, making sure no one was inside, and imagined himself as a superhero. A great and peaceful feeling surrounded him, and after a short moment, left as soon as it began. Keith examined himself and found that he was wearing the same outfit that he imagined himself to be wearing. He wore a full suit of bluish armor with a flowing, red cape. On his hands were brown leather gloves with its fingers cut off at the knuckles. On his belt was a sword that lay in its sheath. And finally, he had wild red hair, with bunches of hair extending several different directions.

“You shall be called ‘Animus’, for you have great courage,” his thoughts echoed. Animus can feel the immense energy flowing throughout his body. He looked for the quickest way out and saw a window that he could open and can easily go through.

“Well, this is it. Let’s do this.” Animus said to himself. He concentrated and managed to lift himself off the ground, abandoning the law of gravity and flew out the window.

“Wowwie. I’m flying and, for some odd reason, I know exactly where I should be heading. It’s like I have a built-in compass!” Animus thought to himself as he flew to his destination.

At the site of the devastation, Animus discovers his foe: a humanoid figure with red skin that was charred in several places, with dark purplish armor, with designs that could only be molded from the darkest of armorers. He wore a full suit of armor, though his arms were bare, save for matching gauntlets. He had no tail, as it was commonly thought of demons. Rather, he had black wings, much like a bat’s. He had no headgear, but there was plenty of charring on the back and sides of the head and neck. He, like Animus, carried a sword. This sword emitted an evil energy, for it was tempered in a place flowing with great evil.

“So, the humans must have run out of options. They have sent in an armored clown,” cackled the demon. Brushing this insult aside, Animus, filled with excitement and some fear, unsheathed his sword and pointed it at his foe.

“State your name, demon,’ Animus commanded with some hesitation.

“My name is of no importance to you, but I will enjoy crossing swords with you, especially when you start bleeding.” The demon lunged at Animus, who lunged at the demon in turn, with a yell to summon all of his courage. The two swords clashed in the air, neither of them successfully hitting its target. However, as the two swords crossed, Animus’s sword was pushing the enemy’s sword away from the center. Animus took notice of this immediately and executed a roundhouse kick clear into the side of the enemy’s head, knocking away his focus, stunning him for a moment.

“HYAHH!!!” yelled Animus, as he quickly slashes his enemy to pieces, the sword penetrating his armor as if it were melted butter. The demon, torn apart by Animus’s sword, vaporized in the middle of the air in smoke.

“Whew. That was an interesting start. I need a rest.” Animus flew back to his home city and found a quiet secluded place to transform back to normal. He walked back to his apartment, looking around to see if anyone saw him land.

“Well, I’m not attracting attention, so I guess I’m ok,” Animus thought to himself. After entering his apartment, Animus turned on the TV to see how the media was handling the scenario and sat down on his sofa.

“Earlier today, a demonic-looking creature attacked the downtown area, until a new figure came onto the scene. One of our cameramen managed to get a decent view of the mystery man.” The images that displayed on the tube were of Animus when he pointed his sword at the demon.

“He wore bluish armor and has red hair, styled like some sort of anime character. He was last seen descending in Terto City, where he managed to hide behind some buildings. After that, he simply disappeared.”

“Whew. That was a close one. I gotta be more careful,” Animus said to himself.

“Scientists speculate that the creature may be an alien life form. As for the warrior who defeated the creature, the scientists say that he might be an alien, too, but are not entirely certain.”

“Go figure,” Animus sighed to himself as he turned off the TV. “Well, I’d better get some rest while I’m still on the ground. The way things are going, breaks aren’t going to be easy to come by, from now on. Well, then again, I have no clue what’ll happen. I sure hope I get to sleep, though. My mind always seems the most active right before going to bed.”

As Animus slept, he heard a familiar voice.

“Animus, well done on your first battle. You have stood against the enemy without fear and defeated him with your courage.”

Animus was pleased at these words, but as he remembered the battle, something puzzled him. “When I was fighting the demon, he seemed to have been well-equipped with the darkest weapon and armor available, yet I sliced straight through his armor without feeling much resistance.”

The voice answered, “The demon’s primary weapon is fear. His armor was but an illusion. His sword was merely steel. He was hoping to weaken your courage by giving himself a mighty appearance.”

Animus suddenly remembered his landing from earlier. “Is there any way I can return home from battles without risking getting my identity revealed? Or maybe, just not draw attention, or something?”

The voice answered just as softly as before. “You will soon have a new place to call ‘home’. Until then, we will grant you protection by hiding you with a veil, so that you will not be seen before or after the battle. One last thing, you will eventually receive a Great Deed medallion. It is like a medal of honor. When you collect them all, you will obtain your full power, and you will fight the deciding battle.”

“Thank you. I will continue to perform my task as well in the future.”

The next day, Animus stayed home to watch the news to wait for the next attack. However, he couldn’t help but play one of his portable video games, but he kept one ear on the TV. That afternoon, the news suddenly turned to a town near his home. The news reporter seemed to be a bit jumpier, now that the demons started attacking.

“We’ve been getting reports of a large reptile-like monster rampaging through Gala Town. Residents are urged to stay in their homes until this beast is under control.”

Upon hearing this, Animus was slightly confused. “Ok, either the demons have a bit more variety than I thought, or some mad scientist decided that demons weren’t enough.” Animus rushed out of his apartment to confront the creature.

Animus finds the creature as he was tearing up a car with his extraordinarily long claws. The beast was hunched over, somewhat. He was about Animus’s size. He had a lot of muscular girth and a dinosaur-like head, but with dark-red hair flowing down its back, covering some of its plates. Animus proceeded to attack but immediately found himself unable to move. “Ack! What is this? And, why do I feel as if we share similar energy?”

A twinkle of light shone from his armor and from the monster’s chest. At this sight, the monster fled into a nearby alley.

“Hey, wait! Get back here!” Animus yelled, as he felt himself becoming movable again. He rushed after the creature, only to find a young man, shaking in fear.

“Don’t hurt me! I don’t know that beast!”

“Whoa, calm down!” Animus responded. “I’m trying to figure out what is going on here. Who are you, and why are you like this?”

“I am Dirk.”, the man replied, his shaking starting to ease. “Recently, I was visited by a celestial being. He told me that I was chosen for a great purpose. However, he told me that I could not use my full strength, because of how much hatred I kept within me. I used the power immediately after I got it. Then, I felt the hatred welling up inside me. I became… that monster! All I could ever think about was destuction! However, the celestial being told me that I will earn my full power when I collect all of the Great Deed medallions.”

Animus responded, “I think the first thing you need to do is start asking for forgiveness, and to lose the hatred that is inside you. You will need to control that power if you want that task to be accomplished.”

“I’ll be heading home now. I’ll need all the rest I can get if I want to be ready to fight,” said Dirk, ignoring Animus’s advice.

“Ok, see ya.” Animus and Dirk returned to their homes, living out the rest of their day.

Later that night, Animus reflected on the day that was getting ready to end.

“So, that guy will also fight against the demons. As awesome as having a partner is, I think I’ll need to keep an eye on him. I don’t want him to go nuts during the fight. Anyway, time for me to slee… argh! It’s happening again! C’mon, Animus. Fight it! You’re a spirit warrior! Ugh! I’m… sorry…” Animus found himself unwilling to fight off the dark desire inside of him.

The next day, Animus woke up later than usual. According to his alarm clock, it was nearly noon, and he found himself sweating.

“No! Why can’t I fight it, still?” Animus knelt by his bed and prayed for repentence for his actions, last night. After the prayer, he turned on the news to find that a demon had already begun to attack near Gala Town.

“How long ago was this?! I gotta hurry!” Animus quickly returned to his hero form, realizing for a moment that despite what happened last night, he still is able to fight as a spirit warrior, although, he did not feel as strong.

Animus raced to the field outside Gala Town to find Dirk battling the demon, by himself. By the time Animus reached the battle, Dirk had just struck the final blow on the demon.

“YEAH! WHOO-HOO!! Take that, sulfur-breath! YOU. CAN’T. TOUCH. THIS!” Animus just stared blankly at Dirk as he was celebrating his first victory over the demon.

“Animus, you showed up! Too bad you missed the action! That demon stood no chance against these claws!”

“That’s awesome, Dirk, but seriously, boast much?” Animus replied, still staring blankly at Dirk.

“Oh, c’mon! You’re just mad because you missed it!” Dirk grinned.

“Dirk, there is this one saying, ‘pride goeth before a fall’. Before you go overboard on the taunts and stuff, you may want to think about how your teammates would react.”

“Well, ok. I’ll let you get the next demon. I haven’t seen how you fight, yet, anyway,” Dirk said, ignoring Animus’s advice, once again.

“Let’s just head off, for now. I don’t think we’ll need to worry about any more demons today.” Animus and Dirk returned home for the day. Later, Animus continued to think about his new teammate.

“Well, he can definitely hold his own. I just wish he didn’t make me feel worse for being late for the battle. At least, he shouldn’t be the only teammate I’ll have. I think the celestial being said that I’ll meet three friends.”

The next morning, Animus and Dirk met just outside Vorca City, a city across the ocean, to battle a small group of demons.

“It looks like things will be busier today,” Animus told Dirk.

“I bet I can knock down more of these pinheads.” Dirk boastfully claimed.

“Just make sure not to go after the demon I’m fighting. Last thing I want is a small sword-related accident,” Animus said in response. The two warriors fought against the demons. Animus fended off the demon’s attacks with his sword, while Dirk brandished his claws and went after two demons at once. As soon as Animus finished off his demon, Dirk had already cleared away the remaining demons.

“Piece of cake!” boasted Dirk.

“There’s another one about several yards away, near that forest. Let’s get going.” Animus and Dirk flew to the forest to find one demon battling against two unfamilar fighters. As Animus and Dirk got close to the battle, one of the fighters finished off the demon with an energy blast from his staff.

“I believe we’re being watched,” said the fighter with the staff. They turned around to find Animus and Dirk watching the battle from a few yards away. As the two fighters came closer to them, Animus could identify the fighters. The first fighter was male and was dressed in mage’s clothes and wore a helmet. The other fighter was a young woman. She had brown hair, but when it shone, it looked somewhat orange, as were the clothes she was wearing. Her style of clothing was in sharp contrast to the male fighter’s clothing. While the male fighter’s clothing looked like it was intended for very cold weather, the young woman’s clothing looked like it was made for the summer months. Upon seeing the young woman, Animus lost his attention on the scenario and focused only on her. After what seemed to be seconds, something suddenly pounded on his head.

“OUCH! What was that all about?!” Animus found himself rubbing his head.

“You were staring at her for a while. I thought I lost you, there,” whispered Dirk.

“Ack! Sorry. I’m Animus. This is my friend, Dirk. We just became spirit warriors a few days ago,” welcomed Animus, though still red in the face from earlier.

“So you two are also Spirit Warriors. I am Mentivis, and this is Melina. I have the powers of the mind, while Melina has the powers of the heart.”

“I hope you don’t mind me asking. How do you two know each other?” Animus asked in curiosity, while trying to keep his emotions under control.

Melina, though shy in nature, managed to speak. “Mentivis and I are cousins. We’ve known each other pretty much all our lives.”

Mentivis continued as Melina finished speaking, “We live on our own, right now, in the town of Feiji, a few miles near here.”

“I have an idea. Do any of us have plans for tonight?” Animus eagerly spoke. He smiled as the other three warriors mentioned that they have no plans for that night. “How about we head on over to my place for dinner? We can learn more about each other, while we’re there.” The warriors were delighted at this invitation. “Ok, so how does pizza sound?” They all agreed on pizza and made their topping suggestions to Animus.

The four warriors parted ways after the conversation. Later that evening, they show up at Animus’s apartment. For dinner, they enjoyed a large stuffed-crust pizza with pepperoni, bell peppers, bacon, sliced tomatoes, and spinach.

Mentivis decided to start the conversation, “Tell us about yourself, Animus. I can sense much honor within you.”

“Well, before now, I was a college junior majoring in teaching. It wasn’t until about 4 or 5 years ago that I started to truly walk with my Lord. I’ve recently gained a thirst for adventure and experiences. I was also a 1st degree Black Belt in Tae Kwon Do, but then damage from a hurricane that hit the city very soon after kinda ended my days in martial arts.”

“I’m curious. What is your fighting style?” Mentivis asked.

“I tend to use my sword quite a lot. Sometimes, if I need to, I’ll use martial arts to fight. I also have energy moves, except I really haven’t used them, yet.”

Mentivis moved on to Dirk. “Dirk, is it? Tell us about yourself.”

“I was pretty much on the same boat as Animus, except I majored in science. Heck, I was top-of-the-class in science! Then, well, some guys messed me up pretty badly. They sabotaged one of my greatest inventions: a machine that allows a person to explore a virtual world, using a large gyroscope that allowed the user to move around freely. I can’t really tell you how they sabotaged it, though. Let’s just say it was so bad, the teacher wanted to give me more than just an F.”

“Is this why you couldn’t use your full power? Did you hate them, afterwards?” Animus interrupted.

“They’re not the only idiots I had trouble with. I’ve seen plenty more,” Dirk responded, sounding a bit more tense than usual.

Animus decided it would be best to just move on. “Mentivis, why don’t you tell us about yourself, as well? I was impressed with how you handled that demon, earlier today.”

Dirk interrupted, “You were not. You were eyeing up the…”

“No I wasn’t, Dirk. Let Mentivis speak,” Animus quickly cut off Dirk’s sentence. “I’m sorry, Mentivis. Go ahead.”

“Well, I was in college, as well. I enjoy studying philosophy, but a great deal of my time was spent studying battles of the past and different kinds of strategies and tactics. Not much else I can say. I can’t remember too much about my past.”

“You really did the coup de grace on that demon, earlier. What’s your fighting style?” Animus continued.

“I mainly use a staff, but I can fire energy of my own, especially through the staff, like you may have seen earlier. I was told that I can charge my shots with fire, ice, or electricity, but I haven’t tried it, yet. I can also use my mind to attack, as well. Let me show you what I mean.”

Mentivis concentrated on the slice of pizza in front of him, and the pizza slice raised itself up to Mentivis’s mouth. Once Mentivis took a bite, the pizza slice started to lower itself gently back onto the plate.

“Whoa. That was awesome! It’s like ‘Look, Ma! No hands!'” Dirk exclaimed. At that moment, the pizza slice dropped onto the plate, free from the grip of Mentivis’s mind. Mentivis suddenly started to feel shaky.

“Excuse me. I think I need some fresh air. May I?”

“Absolutely, go right ahead,” Animus answered. “What did you do, Dirk?”

Dirk, confused, answered, “I dunno. Was he offended by what I said?”

Melina started speaking, breaking her seemingly impenetrable silence. “Mentivis lost his parents in a fatal accident. He was so close to his parents, that whenever he starts thinking of them, he loses his focus and cannot do anything else. He lives with me, right now. He usually feels better after a nap.”

“I think I should probably go out there and cheer him up,” Animus suggested.

“No, Animus. It was my fault. I’ll go outside,” Dirk replied. He got up and walked outside to find Mentivis staring down off the side of the railing to the sidewalk below. “Mentivis, I’m sorry. I had no idea…”

“It’s ok, Dirk. It just hurts a lot when I think of them, that’s all. You’ve done nothing wrong. As a matter of fact, I should apologize for walking out during a conversation.”

Dirk interrupted, “You don’t need to apologize. You handled it much better than I would’ve. I was bullied a lot during my school years. Instead of going somewhere to take a breather, my choice was almost always violence. You know, it’s getting kinda chilly out here. Why don’t we head back inside and enjoy that nice warm pizza inside? Unless Animus decided to take a few slices, we should have plenty more to chow on.”

Mentivis looked at Dirk and smiled. “You’re right, Dirk. I can’t let this sad feeling overwhelm me during a good time. My parents would not like that. Thank you.”

The two warriors re-entered the apartment to continue their conversation and to enjoy their pizza.

Meanwhile, while Dirk was outside with Mentivis, Animus and Melina began to talk to each other.

“Melina, I want to apologize for the way I acted earlier. I had no idea what came over me.”

Melina was silent, at first, but she soon responded, “It’s ok, Animus. I’m just a bit shy. Being a warrior is new to me, and I just don’t know exactly how to act.”

“All you need to do is to be yourself. After all, we’re all friends, now. Hey, I was wondering, what is your fighting style?”

“I use daggers as weapons. I can also use my power to heal anyone who’s hurt. I can also attack with energy. I can fire a volley of small energy blasts, and I can fire small beams of energy from my palms.” As Melina spoke, Animus’s eyes became fixed on hers, as though he was entranced. Animus quickly snapped out of it when he heard the door open. Dirk and Mentivis returned to the table, eager to continue the conversation and their pizza.

After the warriors left for the night, Animus was ready to hit the sack. However, he felt a familiar desire slowly overwhelm him.

“Oh no, not again. Not so soon! C’mon, Animus, fight it! Darnit. It won’t let me sleep. I… I…” Animus’s thoughts became jumbled up, and he slowly stepped away from the bed and walked toward the computer.

The following week, the warriors gather at Dirk’s house to hear of a special plan. Dirk laid out on his table blueprints of a building.

“This idea kinda came to my mind the day after we all met. These are blueprints for our own base of operations. The best part about it is that we can all live in it!”

Mentivis was concerned with this idea. “How are you going to get the money to make such a building? I mean, look at all this stuff. Anti-demon systems, training rooms, not to mention all the stuff needed to make a base like this habitable.”

Dirk replied, “We could ask the leaders of each part of the world to give us funding in exchange for defeating demons.”

Mentivis was outraged. “Are you mad, Dirk?! We’re warriors to help defend the planet, not squander the world’s wealth! I’m sorry, but I’m not doing this.”

Animus intervened, “Wait, I understand where Mentivis is coming from with the funding idea, and I don’t like it either. However, this base does sound like a nice idea. What we could do in addition to defending the country is give extra security to that country, like a hotline to the base or a special device that triggers an alarm.

Mentivis showed some interest in the idea. “What about countries that don’t fund us? Then we end up prioritizing one country over another.”

“I think I can solve that one,” Dirk replied. “We will have a map screen displayed on TV monitors around the base. This screen will detect demons from anywhere in the world.”

“Okay… explain how that will be possible,” Mentivis replied.

“I’ve been studying a particular rare element that is able to disperse low-frequency radio waves across long distances, around 5,000 miles. If the wave hits another element like this, that element will cause more waves to disperse, creating a vast amount of coverage without the aid of satellites,” Dirk explained.

“It sounds like you’ve got things covered, no pun intended,” Animus grinned.

“So, are we all in favor of the plan?” Dirk asked to the rest of the team. The team members agreed to the plan and returned to their homes.

A month had passed since the plan, and many countries had agreed to fund the warriors. The money was given to Dirk for safekeeping, and the warriors continued to defend the countries they vowed to protect. The team met at Dirk’s house at his request.

“I think we have saved enough money to build our new base. The construction plans are complete and are ready for use.” The team cheered after they had heard the news. As they proceeded to find an ideal location for their base, they were stopped by an army of demons.

“I should’ve expected that to happen,” said Animus, irritated.

“We need to be careful. The leader of these demons seems to be noticeably more powerful. Save your strength for the leader,” Mentivis replied. The warriors engaged the army of demons. Animus had grown used to his new powers and managed to target the enemies’ weak points easily, destroying several in a short time. Dirk, with his powerful claws, took on the most demons and was victorious. Mentivis and Melina worked together to dispatch the remaining demons, who fell easily to Mentivis’s staff and Melina’s daggers. Within a few minutes, only the leader was left standing.

“Ok, guys. Time to wrap things up and head off,” said Animus, victoriously.

The leader of the demons began to speak. “Fools. My experience in battle outweighs your combined experience. Rookies like you will only get yourselves killed.”

“Who are you calling ‘rookies’?!” Dirk quickly rushed forward to fight the demon head-on, while the remaining warriors kept on their guard. The demon unsheathed his sword in response. Dirk attempted to relentlessly claw at the demon, only to have every move blocked by the sword. Dirk tried to fire an energy blast from his mouth as a sneak attack, but the demon managed to dodge the attack just in time. Surprised, Dirk let down his guard and was quickly impaled by the demon.

“Aaa-aagh…” Before Dirk could say a word, he fell to the ground, now lifeless.

“DIRK! DEMON, YOU WILL PAY!” Angered, Mentivis quickly went after the demon and attempted to strike him with his staff. Mentivis and the demon exchanged blow after blow, without any successful strike. Mentivis proceeded to attack with energy blasts charged with ice and electricity, only to find that they had no effect.

“What is this madness?! He’s too strong!” Mentivis attempted to parry an attack but was a moment too late. He, too, was struck a fatal blow by the demon’s sword. Mentivis’s body fell alongside Dirk’s.

“No! This can’t be happening! I gotta stop this!” As Animus struggled with his emotions, the demon proceeded to attack the remaining two members. He dashed toward Melina, and, before Animus could save her, struck Melina the same fatal blow.

“NO!! MELINA!!!” Animus caught the falling body of Melina but could not fight his emotions any longer. Within a few seconds, streams of tears came from Animus’s eyes. The demon watched the scene and waited for the final warrior to strike. Animus continued to cry, while putting Melina’s body on the ground, when he heard a voice.

“Continue to let your emotions flow. We will be able to give you the strength to overcome your foe.”

Animus started to glow very brightly. As the glow began to fade, his armor became the shiniest blue one could ever imagine. His cape became golden, and his hair became silvery-white, now flowing downwards onto his shoulders.

“What is this? He’s transformed! It’s so bright!” The demon was stunned, both by the transformation and the light shining off of Animus’s armor.

Animus looked at himself for a second. “Is this what my full power is? I feel incredible!” His attention quickly turned to the demon. “It’s time to finish this.”

Animus flew quickly toward the demon, striking him with his fist. The demon attempted to land some blows with his sword, but Animus managed to parry them all. Animus quickly fired some energy blasts at the demon, then proceeded with the final blow. However, the demon blocked the blow with his own sword. Animus was not about to give up, as he attempted to push through his enemy’s sword with his own force. Just then, he thought he saw two angelic figures standing alongside him, pushing the demon’s sword with their own. The combined might was too much to bear for the demon, and the sword shattered, with Animus’s sword cleaving the demon in two. The demon’s remains disappeared into thin air, and Animus descended toward his fallen heroes. As he exhaled, energy flowed out from him into Dirk’s, Mentivis’s, and Melina’s bodies, healing their wounds and returning them to life. As the energy ceased to flow from Animus’s body, he reverted back to his normal form and collapsed.

Currently sick

January 2, 2010

Well, the Tuesday after Christmas, I got sick. I was all achey and chilly and pretty much downright horrible the first couple days, but recently, with some effort, I can get out of bed, though I nap a lot more frequently. I thought the sickness ended when the fever broke, but I discovered that the fever comes and goes. I’ve been coughing badly the first few days, but it’s gotten a lot better now. So, not exactly a good start to the new year. Well, then again, it’s not how you start, but how you finish. I think I’m quoting my church pastor here, but I can’t be sure if it’s him or my sister’s school pastor.

I’ll be a little late with Chapter 1 of the Spirit Warriors story. It should be up not long after this update.