In one of the corners of Forumscant, there is a vast and ancient forest. At its heart, a mountain towers over it all, and from it one can see the clearings that never exceed a hundred yards in radius. This forest is your venue.
My criteria will be: Immersion, creativity, and flow of writing.
I also expect both of you to post your first round at least within the first quarter of this year (if a month from now), or your inboxes will flood with nagging messages.
No more quarter little brother, this time, all of his power will be brought to bear. The door beyond which no once can see is opening, and you shall be the first of many to fall! Tremble before the might of the covenant.
Kelesk stood at the end of the huge forest which was at the edge of News and Announcements where the Admin Tower stood above all else. Despite receiving damage not long ago the city seemed bustling and carefree. Looking down at the palms of his hands which were semi-clenched and held waste height he breathed a single deep breath. He had been wandering for so long and soon it would be over. His brother, Cucumba, had been in hiding for weeks now, or was it months, he could no longer tell. During his exile Kelesk had never once been concerned with how much time passed him by as he wandered aimlessly around the Forumscant; days had blurred to weeks, weeks to months and months to years. His fingers twitched every so often as he continued to look down at them tiny sparks of energy jumped between his fingers and around his hands disappearing up his arms. His cloak, the one he had found atop Mount Noobus, tugged against his frame in the gentle breeze that blew through the trees rustling through the leaves and leaving a brief sense of tranquillity to fill his mind and for the first time since he had donned it the hood was removed, slinking around the back of his neck leaving his vibrant crimson hair fluttering in the wind.
The cloak he had worn for all these years had been Engar’s - the true catalyst of all that had happened up to this point in time. The image of the young man falling from the inky sky to the side of the mountain had haunted Kelesk’s memories constantly over time picking at his psyche leaving him little more than a psychological time bomb. The very thought of Cucumba had once thrown him into uncontrollable outbursts of rage. Those outbursts were now little more than smouldering craters once inhabited by tens of thousands left in the wake of a deity that soon instilled fear in the entire population. Several of the other Admins had been assigned to constantly watch over Kelesk’s movements via satellite though each time his power came to the forefront the satellites would black out resuming their feed long after he had left the area. Others had taken it upon themselves to stop him and had failed and not even the ashes were left once Kelesk had passed. It was shortly after that the senior Admins banned any confrontation with the Demon and Kelesk was given free reign. Finally in one final confrontation with Grega, Skyrider had cancelled the ban on confrontation and Kelesk was attacked in full force by the Modiwans only to be defeated with devastating losses, Optimus Prime being the sole survivor of the encounter.
Kelesk’s eyes slowly closed revealing the images of the previous encounter of a red haired man covered in the blood of his enemies vanishing in an ocean of emerald. His blinding rage had been his downfall and as he opened his eyes to meet the Admin Tower, he knew that he would not allow it to control him a second time. He knew they would have seen him and would do anything to prevent him from entering the city, they would be coming for him shortly and so there was no rush and with that in mind he raised his open hand around the silhouette of the Admin Tower in the background and closed his hand implying to crush it. The thought brought a smirk to his face leaving his right canine exposed. Turning toward the large mountain that pierced the centre of the huge forest the smirk grew slightly as he felt the air thickening around him. It was a familiar feeling, one of family. At the base of this immense landform was a cave, the cave he had been seeking for years despite its obvious location. Approaching it the claustrophobic air grew thicker and thicker until it reached its worst at the entrance of the cave though despite all that Kelesk entered drawn toward the dim glow that laid in the inky darkness within though a voice echoed throughout which forced him to pause.
“You are too late Kelesk, the restorative process has been completed and he is whole once more.”
It was a familiar voice though he couldn’t identify it.
“He waits for you in one of the clearings to the south; all you can feel here is residue.”
Kelesk’s eyes narrowed burning into the darkness with a fiery crimson as he turned. The dark tunnel threw memories at him; memories of that one dark night where the young man surrounded in an aura of violet fell to the earth and was never seen again. A surge of energy ran along his figure in the darkness and then vanished as he walked into the light. Heading in the direction pointed he came to the first clearing and saw the bulky green figure he had been seeking for all these years. He stood tall and proud with his eyes shut, his black leather clothing gently tugging in the breeze.
“I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised that you’ve been watching me so intently.” Kelesk said quietly, “Ever since Pride vanished you’ve been watching me, wallowing in your own suspicion. I bet it was hard to convince the others of that once I’d disappeared.”
“It was.” Cucumba opened his eyes and smiled, nodding only once as he spoke, “Though once towns started vanishing it wasn’t hard to convince them.”
“Once I am done with you, disposing of the tower and all their treachery will be easy then no longer will you or anyone else affiliated with the Nation of Administration be left. Engar will be avenged and this world will burn.”
Kelesk’s voice had become savage his hands clenched into fists at his sides with bolts of energy surging from his hands up to his shoulders. The grass, longer in the clearing swayed gently in the breeze before folding away from where he stood, small wisps of crimson energy rising from his frame.
“Engar died proudly in the battle against the Rider.”
“No.” Kelesk immediately interrupted as the wisps rising from him thickened,” He died falsely believing he could win.”
Another viscous surge of energy ran over Kelesk’s body before he vanished in what appeared to be a contained explosion of energy reappearing before the Emerald Titan arcing his leg outward and around at him. Raising his arm Cucumba managed to block the blow before watching his attacker vanishing into a similar cloud of energy as before. Hearing the deafening buzz of energy behind him he began to spin on his heels only to feel the warmth of an energy blast pressing into his side and before he could react it detonated carrying him along inertly from the blast until he hit the large trunk of a tree which rustled loudly in protest as large strips of bark broke outward and fell to the grassy earth. Shaking his head and pushing himself from the tree though he was met with another deafening buzz and a maelstrom of energy from which Kelesk emerged, chaos orb in hand pressing it into his chest. Again another savage detonation shook his senses and with it the sharp crack of a tree being torn in two as his body crashed through the trunk. With a combined sound of the falling tree Cucumba swung his airborne body around and dug his feet into the grassy earth looking toward the cloud of energy and dust where Kelesk had landed after his attack. His chest ached from the fresh scorch marks on it and his face wore a scorned look. He knew Kelesk’s physical power was naught compared to his own though he had never considered that Kelesk would simply use his energy attacks in melee combat to gain the edge.
“For all you have done, brother, your death will mark the beginning of a new age, one of chaos.”
Kelesk threw himself into the air and vanished in a cloud of energy that gnashed at the air reappearing only to release a handful of glaives which tore through the air toward the Admin who launched himself backward spiralling through the air and unclipping his bansabre from its holster, igniting the blade and swinging it at one of the glaive which hit the glowing emerald blade, in a flash of sparks the sabre blade shrunk to where the glaive hit it, growing back to its full length once the glaive had passed through leaving it to hit the emerald Titan in the shoulder before it dissolved. As he landed he notice another glaive flying toward his face holding the hilt of the sabre up it cut straight through the sabre hilt, skimming across his cheek before disappearing into a fine black powder that was carried off by the breeze. As the rear half of the sabre fell inert to the earth Cucumba watched the tiny green crystal break apart and land mutely amongst the blades of grass. Tossing the remnants of his weapon aside he raised his hands to block another melee blast from the Spectre who had reappeared next to him, the orb flying between the small gap between the Admin’s arms and his face and hitting the side of the mountain blasting chunks of solid earth skyward which rained down around the two fighters, slamming into the soft earth and through trees snapping large branches and bringing them to the ground with loud rusting. In the sky birds of all varieties fled the combat area, filling the sky with a squabbling of flapping wings and various squawks and caws. As the cloak fell silent around Kelesk’s figure finally released from the explosion’s strong winds his face grew to a manic smile, his crimson hair partly ruffled though still standing on end as sparks of energy surged over his figure.
“Kelesk, stop this, Engar’s death was not my fault.” Cucumba pleaded, holding his hands open to his sides.
“This is not only about Engar, Old One. If it were I would remain in solitude.” Kelesk replied, his voice seething with annoyance, “My brothers, since my exile I have discovered the truth behind it all.”
Cucumba’s face straightened to a concerned look.
“You were hoping that the Rider would kill me. Instead, through his death I discovered that our father was not the one who caged them, it was you.”
“That’s a lie.”
“Is it, brother?” Kelesk retorted barely letting a second pass before he cut in. His face lowered and his shoulders twitched, he remembered the day clearly.
After expelling every ounce of energy he was able to muster he ignited the Oblivion Aura and in desperation called forth the fires of infinity. He remembered falling to his knees exhausted in a plateau of ash and embers, the Rider scorched but unharmed otherwise. His deliberate approach not affecting the sense of hopelessness he had felt at the time, he had thrown his all at the Rider for naught and even brought forth a new found power that he had no knowledge of prior to the event yet it hadn’t been enough. His last memories of the day were similar to that of his last encounter with Grega, an ocean of green. It had irritated him to no end and in his aimless wandering thereafter, consumed by his own power he had discovered the truth. While it had been truth that the man who now stood before him was his brother, he had taken him best friend from him, thrown him against Pride and forced him to walk a predetermined path he had not wished to follow. He had been used against his will in order for Cucumba to have a tool to destroy his father, though somewhere the plan had gone awry. Never had the Ancient Horror expected Kelesk to come across the secret of his caged brethren, or that fact that his original death had invoked the powers that awoke the Last Rider.
It had been a fundamental flaw which had plagued Cucumba for nearly a decade now. He had thought his Onigan powerful enough for him to foresee the outcome of his change in the timeline though it had failed, merely one critical flaw in the whole structure. Now here Kelesk stood, finally awoken from all the mental barriers Cucumba had tried to put in place in order to use Kelesk to achieve his own ends. Engar, his only true friend was missing and possibly dead. His brethren were caged in a prison at the farthest ends of space and at the end of it all Kelesk had no intention of helping Cucumba to kill the one being to which both were born of.
Kelesk took but a single deliberate step toward the verdant Leviathan and vanished in a loud crack of thunder which shook the very earth beneath the two, scorching the grassy earth upon which he once stood reappearing next to him clipping the back of his knee with a low kick leaving the Admin to stumble to regain his balance. Taking a careful step forward in order to prevent himself from falling to a knee the Admin steadied himself only to feel the warmth of another blast against the back of his skull feeling a brief shock shake through his system he fell deaf to white noise, his vision went white and his body numb. Shaking himself back into consciousness he pulled himself to his feel and pulled a broken sword hilt from the back of his belt holding it to his side and reacquiring Kelesk’s location.
“You have no idea what you’re trying to unleash by ending my life Kelesk. You’re being blinded by your own endeavours.”
Spitting on the ground next to him Kelesk stared back at the Admin, his eyes burning brightly though his face was shadowed by a tree. His face remained uninterested and his form was prepared to launch another volley of attacks at any given time.
“This world is tilting on the balance; this fight will only worsen what is to come.”
“Enough, brother. . .”
Kelesk vanished once more reappearing several metres from where he had disappeared holding what appeared to be a tiny rock of hardened energy in his palm, it spiralled with energy alike what Cucumba had seen the Oblivion Aura conjure and yet he couldn’t sense the aura’s presence at all. As Kelesk’s arm reared backward before releasing the small stone forward the Ancient Horror could sense something abrupt about the attack though in his moment of surprise Kelesk had used the distraction to gain another several metres of ground and was almost atop the Admin, pushing the stone forward and into his chest. In a matter of second Cucumba’s world went black, his vision returning to him moments later as he found himself pulling himself from under a layer of dirt. Looking toward Kelesk he saw a massive crater between the two of them which burned with unnatural flames that had spread to nearby trees leaving the clear sky to be filled with dust and smoke. As his senses returned to him he could hear Kelesk’s maniacal laughter over the low rumble of shaking earth. It was the same as it had been the last time they met; chilling and raspy. He knew in the back of his mind that no matter how much control Kelesk had come to possess it was impossible to sate the thirst for destruction once it had begun.
“Enough of this. . .” Muttered the Admin feeling the energy swell around his body lifting him into the air toward the centre of the flaming crater.
“Kelesk!” He called out drawing the attention of the distant glow of Kelesk’s eyes, “Remember that you have chosen this fate alone and no matter what you do your remaining brethren will not be released. I have seen the door at the end of time and your fall.”
Kelesk stared at Cucumba for a moment, pausing in thought before laughing loudly again.
“That is where you are wrong Old One.” The menacing laughter stopped abruptly and Kelesk’s tone became matter-of-fact, “A second from the cage is already free and roaming this world, he merely requires a vessel. You have forgotten that pressure put on you in battle weakens the cage, it will not be long before the third awakens too.”
Cucumba bit his lip and grimaced. For some time he had felt the presence of a third in the area but was unable to feel a life force linked to it. The spirit had been lingering in the area around Kelesk, waiting for him to land the killing blow so that it had the vessel it required to be joined with its peer. Shaking his head Cucumba finally realised the urgency of the situation. While he knew full well Kelesk had wanted him dead, he had never considered the possibility that he had planned to create powerful vessels for the caged spirits once they had been released.
Staring down at Kelesk’s glowing red eyes he watched as a large surge of energy arced over his figure before sparking outward into the air readying himself for another assault. While not desperate he knew that Kelesk wouldn’t hesitate to kill him given even a single opportunity. He wouldn’t toy around as he did with other opponents, this time it was all or nothing and the unfriendly smile on his face only reinforced the fact.
Watching the devil vanish from the ground before him Cucumba readied himself throwing his monstrous fist around in a large hooking blow which was deflected by Kelesk who was already behind him and launching another volley of attacks. Swatting the first punch away Kelesk swung his body around anticlockwise launching his leg around and hitting the verdant Leviathan in the neck using his own momentum he continued to spin landing two more kicks to the Admin’s face before vanishing in a storm of energy leaving the stunned Admin to fall inert to the ground though shortly after his world shook as Kelesk ploughed him into the ground digging up the soft earth around the two before vanishing again.
“If this is truly all you have to offer Cucumba just let me kill you.”
The Admin rose quickly to his feet and dusted himself off. Reaching behind him he unclipped what appeared to be little more than a broken hilt which got Kelesk’s attention immediately. Staring up at the sky the Admin held the blade skyward and inhaled deeply.
“Enough of this childish charade. . . Rise from the depths, Harbringer!”
Narrowing his eyes Kelesk watched on from a short distance as the Admin first lowered the hilt then clasped it with both hands charging toward him. Only two steps into what had been taken as a reckless charge a brightly glowing emerald blade burst from the end of the hilt and in a set of deliberate strides Cucumba closed this distance between the two rearing the blade readying it to attack.
“Sit upon the black throne of the betrayer with seven crowns -- First Crown, Kohn.”
Kelesk’s mouth slackened dropping slightly,
“Then that sword. . .”
Throwing his body to the side Kelesk managed to avoid the first precise stab from the emerald weapon, tipping himself off balance and onto his hands in order to avoid a second diagonal slash which narrowly missed him. Throwing his weight upward and spinning back to his feet he looked upward as the emerald Titan approached again. Taking a single step backward from his attacker the solid trunk of a tree pressed up against his spine and in an instance his expression turned to panic. With nowhere to back away Kelesk scowled and tore open a gap in space vanishing into it with an outburst of energy as a precise horizontal slash tore through the air where he once stood cutting into the tree and ripping a few small bits of bark from it. In the air where Kelesk had vanished the Admin noticed a small streak of blood which fell to the ground staining the lush green grass.
“Second Crown, Kahn.”
The Admin swung around wildly holding the blade outward with one hand as he sensed the energy surging closely behind him. With a loud clang and a wide arc of sparks to accompany it he saw the Spectre in the air behind him with one end of the Rogue Scythe dug into the ground he swung around on the other and with little to no time to act the Admin threw himself forward twisting his frame clockwise around an incoming dropkick and attempting to land a well-placed elbow into the temple of the Apparition though once he had made his full circle Kelesk was nowhere to be seen.
“Third Crown, Kahm.”
Unable to locate Kelesk immediately he turned slightly catching a brief glimpse of one of the scythe’s crimson blades barely miss his throat stumbling backward from the wide trail of crimson he followed it back to the source seeing a large spiral of crimson encircle Kelesk’s figure before it came for him once more. In a flurry of attack the weapon’s blades battered against what defence he could muster often resorting to avoiding the weaker attacks that came from the scythe’s second blade. Using the momentum and impact force gained by the parried attacks Kelesk was able to cover himself from counterattack attacking in one relentless attack which had the Admin backing away in an attempt to gain extra time between each attack though the effort had been fruitless. Finally left with little choice but to attempt an offensive Cucumba planted his hind foot and changed his posture clipping the side of the scythe and forcing Kelesk’s momentum driven attack to a halt as the blade slammed down into the earth. Seeing his moment of opportunity the Admin pushed his stride forward, thrusting the emerald blade forward skimming Kelesk’s side before he was able to vanish in a maelstrom of energy.
“Forth Crown, Sohn.”
Holding a hand to his side and wielding his weapon with one hand the Leviathan began to gather energy as he charged down Kelesk’s new location swinging his weapon upward to deflect to crimson scythe blade that came to greet his approach. Using what little momentum he had the Apparition was able to swing the scythe around himself only to have it met with another deflecting blow from Cucumba’s weapon. Off balance and off guard Kelesk paused momentarily, digging one end of his weapon into the ground to regain his balance. Looking upward toward his attacker his face changed to panic as his gaze was met only with a brightly glowing marble of energy.
Kelesk’s visage turned briefly to a savage scowl though any sound thereafter fell silent to the roar of earth and trees being torn away from where the blast had detonated leaving little more than a cloud of dust, leaves and debris. Turning to face behind him through the cloud of dust he waited for his vision to clear the area illuminated only by his blade. As the air cleared he saw Kelesk kneeling, the blades of his weapon sheathed and in an area which resembled where the blast had originally detonated. The cloak he wore fluttered gently and his hair tugged along in the breeze with it though any damage he had received due to the attack went unnoticed. He stared at the ground, parts of his hair covering his facial features though Cucumba could feel the anger brewing within. Kelesk’s energy had always felt like a tsunami to him and it only worsened as a fight dragged on.
“Fifth Crown, Jin!”
As the halo of lightning formed above the Admin’s head Kelesk’s body sparked savagely and finally discharged into the halo leaving the area shaking from the sound emitted.
After a brief pause Kelesk slowly rose to his feet using the staff for support, his hair held upward from an unseen force, his shoulders twitching ever so slightly.
“Sixth Crown, Yi!”
The halo of fire lit up above the Leviathan’s head as the ring of lightning was delivered a second large discharge of Kelesk’s energy. As the second loud rumble echoed into the distance it was replaced by Kelesk’s maniacal laughter.
“Is something funny, brother?” Cucumba sneered looking towards the vibrant crimson hair that shrouded Kelesk’s lowered face.
“For eons I have heard of this, Bankai.” He smirked, almost in amazement, “And now here it is before me. So far I’m not impressed.”
“I have told you little brother; you know not what you are attempting to begin.”
Kelesk raised his head revealing his face, twisted in a bewildered smile of both humour and anticipation. “Enlighten me.”
“Look around you, the dark star of the Seven is shining brightly in the sky above us. Both humanity and the old gods have chosen their individual champions.” The Admin tightened his grip on his blade as the third eye opened on his forehead, “We have seen the future. You failed once before and therefore will do so again.”
Chaos’ laughed echoed through the forest, “No one can foresee my future.” Kelesk sneered, his face still stricken with a comical look, “I and I alone determine to outcome of this timeline, not you or our father.”
“You are a fool if you truly believe that.”
Cucumba had barely finished his sentence before Kelesk cut in, “Then level your Bankai.” His voice was furious though his face showed nothing but conviction and anticipation.
“As you wish. . . Seventh Crown, Tae.”
As he spoke the words the seven halos sunk together vanishing into an eerie green flame which burned atop what appeared to be his very flesh. Though Kelesk’s laughter had fallen silent he remained with a devilish smile on his face as a strong wind grabbed the cloak he wore and pulled at it. He watched intently, carefully as the flame consumed the giant before him leaving only a gale of wind caused by the merging of the crowns.
“And finally,” Spoke the Admin softly as his tattered duster and pants vanished underneath the burning field of energy which consumed his figure, “The eighth Crown, Geun -- The Heavens!”
Kelesk watched closely as the three brightly glowing golden eyes vanished beneath a sea of emerald and while flames. They burned fiercely though surprisingly gave off no heat. Squinting slightly against the light given off by the flames Kelesk watched as the flames slowly burnt into wondrous plates of armour which covered the Admin’s whole figure, each plate delicately inlaid with gold patterns that no mortal smith could every reproduce. The armour itself glowed with its own energy and looked as though it had never once seen combat and though the Admin still clutched his weapon, the Harbringer, it glowed with an unnatural aura of gold.
Though the armour was admirable Kelesk still stood with a look of cynicism. He could feel the waves of energy that the armour itself emitted and yet the being underneath was little more than that.
“You who cannot begin to understand our power,” Cucumba’s voice echoed around him, some speaking in different tongues, “You will fall before the infinite power of the Splinter.”
“You claim to be omnipotent. . . Even you should know the Splinter is not infinite.”
There was a brief pause before Cucumba readied his weapon to attack.
“I don’t even need the power of Oblivion to defeat the likes of you.” Kelesk’s eyes glowed savagely as he spoke and the air around him sparked outward. The earth beneath his feet burned and churned upward ripping it apart leaving him to sink slightly as it gave way.
Clutching his Harbringer with both hands Cucumba began his forward charge rearing the weapon back in similar fashion to how he had before. Lurched forward midstride the Admin vanished for but a moment as his movement accelerated leaving a fading image of himself where he once stood leaving the surrounding trees swaying in the gale he had left in his wake.
Not a single second had passed before Cucumba had closed the distance between the two and swung his weapon across himself in a wide horizontal arc. A single mighty clang echoed through the remnants of the forest as the two weapon slammed against one another sending sparks flying outward. With neither willing to give ground both attempted to force their way through the others weapon. Feeling himself beginning to give ground behind the overwhelming power the emerald Titan brought to bear Kelesk allowed himself to vanish through a tear and though expecting the Admin to stumble forward he quickly regained his footing and swung his Harbringer toward where Kelesk had re-emerged. As the weapons battered against each other once more Cucumba turned his figure around to face the Spectre only to see the ground beneath his feet crumble and tear away. Kelesk’s face wore nothing but fury as large bolts of energy surged over his figure and discharged into the armour plated the Admin wore forcing him backward.
“I am the second born of the Timeless One, formed of nothing but his limitless wrath.”
Kelesk’s voice was low and strained and his body quivered slightly as the large bolts of energy surged over him.
“All that you and your people have created, I shall destroy.”
Kelesk seethed through clenched teeth, his hands clenched into fists at his sides.
“I am the most powerful of the Ogdru Jahad and your world will burn in my wake!”
In that moment Cucumba felt the tsunami he had feared. Kelesk’s aura crackled to life ripping apart the grass and earth around where he stood turning it into fine particles that were tossed outward.
Vanishing in a typhoon of energy Kelesk left large shockwaves of energy at both entrance and exit points of each tear he made finally emerging atop Cucumba, energy buzzing within his hand as he threw his arm around collecting Cucumba’s temple in what appeared to be an open handed slap though the instance it connected his hand detonated with an explosion that shook the ground. Cucumba knew he was off the ground flying backward though his hearing had been muffled by the ear splitting cracks made by each tree he hit ricocheting off one and slamming into the base of another. Pulling himself to his hands and knees he felt the armour around his neck tighten as Kelesk pulled him backward and hit the back of his head with another blast of energy, his aura flaring brightly as the blast detonated leaving the Admin’s head to slam forward into the ground. In the background of the white noise that droned in his ears he could hear Kelesk’s devilish laugh and he could feel the presence of the chaos aura around him distorting the very fabric of time around him. Leaning against the base of the tree near which he was hunched he slowly pulled himself to his feet feeling the tree next to him start to crack and break apart under the stress of the ignited chaos aura near it, clenching his Harbringer tightly in one hand though he knew that there was no turning back from what he had started. With one deep inhale he turned slowly to face the demon who stood as an affront all he had helped to create during his time amongst the people of the Forumscant and slowly released his breath.
Slowly gripping the weapon with both hands he lunged forward swing his weapon in a three sequential unexpected attacks which knocked Kelesk backward digging his heel into the ground to regain his balance Kelesk’s weapon shuddered as the Leviathan pressed forward, pushing his own weapon downward against the Apparition’s scythe until his rear foot began to give way and sink into the earth which churned beneath the effects of his aura. Growling loudly and attempting to force his weapon forward Kelesk’s feet sank once more, the ground rupturing and tearing away as his aura flared savagely leaving a large ring of dirt and dust around the two.
“You may be stronger than me. . .” Kelesk grunted attempting to force his weapon forward once more. “But I have more to work with.”
Digging one end of his weapon into the ground to use as leverage Kelesk took his left hand from his weapon holding it to the Admin’s chest as his aura flared outward forcing Cucumba’s to ignite in a typhoon of conflicting energy.
“You truly think you can stop me like this?” Cucumba muttered through the gnashing of the two weapons.
As the chaos aura flared outward Kelesk’s hand was forced backward as the stone of energy grew in his palm swirling with its own aura of energy. With one solid movement Kelesk forced the stone against Cucumba’s chest leaving a large hole in the inlaid armour he wore and as his emerald blood splattered outward from the apparent wound Kelesk smiled with victory, staring at the helmet which concealed the Admin’s face but to Kelesk’s shock, he didn’t collapse, nor did the blast rip through his opponent. Watching the emerald blood burn up in the conflicting auras Kelesk growled loudly, as his chest began to burn and then it grabbed his attention, the stone of energy he had forced into his opponents chest sat half submerged in his own. As the scent of burning flesh filled the air Kelesk allowed a small scream of agony to escape him as the rock was torn asunder within his own aura and flung outward shattering into hundreds of tiny pieces which tore through both himself and his enemy alike. As the blackened blood escaped the Spectre’s mouth his defence began to falter his feet sinking further and the earth around the two ripping apart large chunks of the harder earth. Surrounding trees were pulled up and shredded apart in the mixing auras and the blackened blood of Kelesk began to dissolve along with the debris that flew around the two.
“Coward!” The word barely escaped Kelesk’s lips as his voice cracked. “You will die!”
In one violent motion both blades ignited, the primary blade arcing around the back of his head the second bursting forward and around the back of the Admin’s calves eating through the armour that had covered his body and burning into the flesh. With nowhere to retreat to Cucumba’s focus turned to his leg and in his lapse of concentration Kelesk forfeited the parry, pulling his weight backward into a roll and pulling the back end of his scythe with him.
As he saw Kelesk roll away and throw himself back to his feet he felt his weight tip to one side his vision blurred slightly and he fell to the ground landing with a thud. Looking first as Kelesk he could see the creatures face seething with hatred. He then reached for his ankle groping at nothing but air, before he then turned his gaze to what was little more than a cauterized stump.
“Your Onigan has failed you brother. I have won.”
Kelesk stood over his downed opponent claiming victory, the wry smile on his face showing evidence that he had at one point been concerned for his life. Throwing the Admin’s weapon from his grasp Kelesk kneeled beside his downed opponent and stared into the glowing green eyes that stared back at him desperately. Unclipping a broken hilt of his own from his pants he held it in an open hand in front of the Admin. The design was unique, though familiar. It was Engar’s rogue sabre. The green eyes vanished for a moment amidst the gold and white helmet and then reopened sadly.
“You have toyed with all of us but most of all him.” Kelesk spoke softly, his words hard to make out while his voice was low. “You allowed both he and I to throw ourselves at the Rider and for what. For your own selfish agenda”
Kelesk shook his head and stood up, igniting the violet blade and holding it to his side. The blades of his own weapon sheathed leaving only the lonely hum of the ban sabre to occupy the now silent air.
“For the longest time I had dreamt only of revenge, and then once the Oblivion Aura wiped my memories from me a second time, I knew nothing other than the will of the Ogdru Jahad.” Kelesk sighed and stepped away from the cripped Admin. “And while now I know the whole truth there is no denying that despite everything that has happened, you used me to your own ends and for that the will of my brethren will reshape this world into one of chaos and destruction and you shall be its catalyst.” Turning the blade in his hand he directed it downward at the Admin’s neck and smiled. “Farewell, brother.”
No. . .
Kelesk’s lungs exhaled and his eyes shot open his body frozen in place. In the corner of his eye he could see the doorway of white light rip open and the figure inside step through. He tried to ignite his aura and break free from the invisible bindings that held him in place but could not bring it to spark to life. On the ground before him he saw Cucumba begin to pull himself away from the figure bathed in white flames muttering something Kelesk could barely hear.
“You. . .” The giant spoke, his words sounding as though they were a very part of the environment, “He who guards this time. You have made a fool of yourself and all that we are.”
“K- K- Kaiser. . .” Mumbled the Admin still trying to gain distance from the monster by dragging himself along the ground.
Kaiser’s eyes turned to meet Kelesk’s and began to approach in a manner that made him appear as though he were floating.
“You, Flame of Infinity, your power does not stem from our drooling father, an interesting turn of events for this time.”
Kelesk continued to fight against the power that had him locked in place but was unable to force himself to move.
“Our father must have learnt from his original mistake.”
Kaiser looked down at Cucumba whom he now stood over and without lifting a hand raised the Admin to his feet.
“Guardian of this time. You have seen the end and yet you still fail to succeed in the prophecy that I alone have handed to you.” Kaiser raised a single hand across his shoulder and swung it hard hitting Cucumba with the back of his hand and releasing him from the power that held him up. A large trail of emerald blood spurted outward from the Leviathan’s helmet and followed the inert line his figure took as it fell to the cold earth.
Finally feeling the bindings that held him release Kelesk stepped backward from the figure.
“You look like him, but you don’t. . .” Kelesk first questioned.
“That is because, little brother, his Bankai is untrained.” His words became harsh and directed as he approached the end of his sentence, “He is a fool for attempting to combat one of the Ogdru Jahad as he is. I, however, have seen the end. Our father’s energy is always mine and in my time the battle has already been won. I have taken it all and it is almost time for me to free myself from his primitive clutches.”
“Even the tiniest morsel of infinity is infinite.” The statement drew more attention towards himself as Kaiser stared through him comprehending the words, “You say that this time differs from your own, Kaiser. I think you have underestimated our father. We Seven are proof of this.”
“That is where you are wrong. In my time another of your brethren was released in the first battle, while he was a supreme strategist his powers were limited as they were drawn from the shared power of myself and our father.” Kaiser’s voice was unshaken; he spoke with authority and in a very matter-of-fact manner, “You on the other hand are quite different. You, while weakened without your brethren’s influence are the hand of destruction. Your power stems from the Flame of Infinity.”
Both went silent as Cucumba pulled himself from the ground managing to raise himself into a seated position.
“Now however, since this guardian was unable to complete his task I must finish you myself,” Kaiser spoke looking toward Cucumba who was still recovering. “Roar upon the Golden Throne beyond the Door . . . Spear of Destiny!”
Kaiser’s hand which was held empty at his side raised and in it appeared a large golden spear which thudded loudly as its butt was placed against the earth.
Kelesk’s gaze lowered and he shook his head slightly, “Many have been left dead in my wake and now you. . . Your name, Kaiser, shall be just another to add to the slaughter.”
The air around Kelesk sparked out savagely as Kaiser levelled the golden spear towards his target.
“That is where you are wrong, Flame of Infinity.”
Kelesk face twisted in confusion as another surge of energy gnashed at the air around him. Turning his gaze back to Kaiser he growled in anger seeing him lowering his stance readying an attack. Holding the violet sabre in his hand Kelesk held it to his side readying the blade for the oncoming attack. Sheathing his scythe and clipping it back to his pants he held the ban sabre with both hands and threw himself forward making several rapid slashes with the weapon each swatted aside by the massive spear which his enemy held and dodging it as it was swung back towards him. Throwing his figure around in a spiral of violet Kelesk slammed backward into the large trunk of a tree watching at the monstrous spear swung around in a wide horizontal arc towards him a second time with nowhere left to run he hold the vibrant blade toward the oncoming spear, clenching his teeth tightly and braced himself. With one bone shattering attack the spear battered against the blade of the sabre recoiling backward in a way that caught Kelesk’s attention but in the same second as curiosity began to plant seeds of confusion in his head he felt something unseen hit his chest. As his eyes began widen his jaw slackened and a stream of blood spattered outward as his body was thrown backward like a ragdoll flying backward until it slammed against a large rock flinging over it and coming to rest after hitting a tree where it remained motionless allowing the violet blade of his sabre to sheath itself.
The Spectre’s eyes were wide open with shock though he lay face down on the grass amongst the roots of a tree. Despite his defence the spear had hit him with the force of a freight train and he knew in the back of his mind that nothing he could have done would have dampened the impact. Slowly he moved to life himself to his knees in a slow pained motion and has he finally manage to lift himself he coughed up another mouthful of blood.
“You. . .” Kelesk’s exhaled words were hard to distinguish as blood dripped from his gaping mouth. “I will rip you apart. . .”
A large surge of energy consumed Kelesk’s form before discharging outward as Kaiser looked on emotionlessly walking over to where Chaos was on all fours.
“Flame of Infinity, you cannot hope to defeat all that we are, everything that I am. This battle is fruitless and it has ended as I had foreseen. You thought to toy with the strings of fate which had been predetermined long before you came to be and now you will pay for this interference.”
Kelesk turned his head slightly to look upward at the gigantic figure that he had been unable to come close to and snarled like a rabid animal. His eyes burned with a fiery crimson unalike any other and attempted to push himself to his feet, stumbling and collapsing at Kaiser’s feet.
“Destiny has willed you to lose this battle little brother. You were a fool to believe it could be rewritten by your hand. No matter how adept you may be at coercing the hands of time to your will I reside where time no longer exists.”
Kelesk stared downward at the pool of blood growing between the blades of grass beneath him and growled softly as the final pieces of the puzzle fell into place. From the moment Kaiser had frozen him he had sensed something amiss around him though it had been so subtle it had never occurred to him.
A gentle breeze blew through his hair and tugging against his cloak, blowing fallen leaves and dust across his vision. His face twisted in a mixture of emotions as he finally realised he had been fighting an uphill battle while blindfolded. Carelessly he had sought the death of Cucumba and though he had known of the Covenant he refused to believe that each one who had agreed to it had made the pact with one whom stood above the rest; the one who stood before him now.
Feeling a heavy hand take a hold of his hair and pulling it upward he was painfully lifted upward soon finding himself face to face with the emerald behemoth whose face remained cold and emotionless. Without words to say he swung the mighty spear around once more hitting Kelesk’s ribs with what seemed little more than a tap but as the spear softly bounced off the spectre’s side he was thrown sideways from the leviathan’s grip slamming into another tree with a sickening thud and a spatter of crimson. With one small twitch and a spark of energy Kelesk’s body went silent the solid grip he had held on the broken hilt of the violet ban sabre loosening until it was apparent he was no longer holding it.
From a short distance away Cucumba looked on as Kaiser slowly approached his downed opponent once more. Unable to find it in himself to be surprised with how the battle had shifted so suddenly in his favour though unable to render assistance due to his injury all he was able to do was look on haplessly as Kaiser slowly beat what little life remained inside the Spectre out. Once more a large surge of energy sparked over the body that lay before his other self, each time it did it chilled him to the core. He knew that no matter how much damage Kelesk took physically it would not dampen his abilities and if Kaiser gave him an inch to work with, he would be more than happy to take the extra mile.
“Get to your feet, Lord of Chaos.” Kaiser muttered as he approached the motionless body watching it intently as a small spark ran over his hair.
Taking another step forward the body before him twitched slightly and slowly moved to raise itself. Halting a second step toward the body he watched as Kelesk first pushed himself to his knees and then to his feet using the tree next to him for support until he had his footing. Slowly the demon’s head raised, parts of his face were covered in his own crimson blood as well as smears of emerald from Cucumba. From the corners of his mouth ran two thick lines of red which dripped from his chin to the dusty old robe he wore which fluttered in the breeze. On his face remained a small smirk, barely noticeable amongst the blood that adorned his features but it was there, his eyes remained burning and red with nothing but a newfound hatred for the life of the one that stood before him.
Taking hold of the hood of his robe he pulled it over his head, smearing blood across his face and tossed it to the ground next to him staring directly at Kaiser and began to chuckle silently to himself.
Looking on in confusion Kaiser grasped his weapon with two hands and readied himself though after a brief pause all that had changed was Kelesk’s expression. Gradually his smirk turned into a humoured snarl revealing blood stained teeth which allowed more to run from his mouth, his laugh growing louder and more sinister.
Stepping toward Kaiser Kelesk’s laugh suddenly stopped and his aura ignited around him pulling apart the ground around it.
“I had underestimated you. I had thought you all to be of the same pedigree but I was mistaken.” Kelesk’s grin grew as his head tilted around in an overconfident gesture. “A mistake I won’t repeat.”
As Kaiser opened his mouth to speak Kelesk’s aura flared wildly and tore apart the ground around his feet in a wide arc of dust and debris that set the tree he had been using for support on fire. Looking toward the flame Kaiser noted that the flames were unalike anything he had seen before, they were darker than a normal flame, blood red. Looking back toward Kelesk his overconfident smirk remained the aura flaring wildly as he held his hands clenched to fists at his sides.
“Now Kaiser, allow me to show you true power.”
Kelesk’s aura flared once more and shattered into microscopic shards of energy which glistened like diamonds in the bright sunlight that bore down on the two as they stood in a small clearing amongst damaged and broken trees and as the tiny pieces fell downward to the dirt beneath him Kaiser began to sense something frightening; something which seemed more like a black hole than an energy source.