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The Good Fight
Memories were such fickle thing. Nox remembered things, some things were completely random, others were very specifics, like the fact that he had this awesome power. He could reign in control of this amazing light, and create some pretty devastating things. At first it was just this trickle of power. A weave of air to push a man backwards. But as Nox sat in the tunnels of the underground, he could see so much potential. Strands of fire and air glowed in front of his eyes. He fashioned a whip from them that he could crack from the ends of one tunnel to the end of the other. The flames and the air licked the sides of the tunnel, but never extinguished. The feeling of holding the power was intoxicating. He wanted to draw upon it, drink it till he was full. But he never would be, he could feel the doom of doing so before even trying. This power was devastating, he knew that, for himself and to others, but Nox loved it none-the-less.

Everything was so clear, so vivid, every sight was so detailed, every sound so crisp, every smell vivid. Nox bet food tasted it's best while holding the power so close to hand. The world turned on above his head, as he dove deeper into the tunnels with his ball of glowing light. He wasn't searching for anything specific, but he wanted a fight. A real fight - the guys at the local gyms were not what he was looking for. Sure Bas was a good fight, but the danger in the ring was not for him - there was none. And he couldn't logically use his ability in the arena of someplace public. He felt the definite desire to keep his ability secret, so the depths of the underground city is where he sought an opponent. One could only imagine the horrors one would find down here.
Finding the oni had been enlightening. Hearing that a second creature had been found that night too was baffling. Oni didn't usually hunt in packs or close together. Thought it wasn't completely unheard of. She distinctly remembered the pack of oni her and Antoinette found when she was a kid. That had been one hell of a fight and Chi Mai hadn't made it through the encounter.

Aria went deeper into the tunnels. The darkness inside the tunnels made Aria feel at home. The darkness inside was still creeping in. She didn't want to hurt anyone, but the darkness it grew and it craved pain, lusted for fear. It was evil, she was evil. She didn't want to be this person, but she was struggling with the path Lucas had shown her.

A noise in the distance caught her attention. It sounded of fire, but there was a distinct crack of air to it. Aria couldn't think of what could make that noise. She drew her sword and crept forward in the darkness.

Aria rounded a corner and a whip of fire barely missed her nose. That was new. At the other end a man stood - dark hair and eyes, clearly embracing his gift of the gods. Aria backed up, he didn't seem to see her just yet. She went into the shadows and hoped he couldn't make her out, at least not completely. She watched as he moved through the shadows, the glow from the fiery whip lighting things as it passed by.

The distinct drip of water near by, the puddles on the ground were just a shimmer of glass on the ground. He looked sinister as the whip past his body. He knew how to use the weapon. He looked like he'd trained often in its use. It was part of his body. It moved in a rhythm like a fly fisherman. Back and forth, snaking through the air, waiting for the fish to bite. Except he wasn't waiting for any fish, he was waiting for prey. It wasn't her feeling. And it wasn't his. Behind him, a shadow moved. It made no sound, it was near black, it smelled of death even from this distance. It slide through the shadows towards the man with the whip of fire.
The power flowed through Nox. He felt on top of the world. There really was no other feeling that matched this. The whip flowed from one end of the tunnel to the other, it snapped and sizzled at the damp walls. He could hear the dripping of water else where in the tunnel. Each sounded echoed in the emptiness of his new ring.

A girl rounded the corner and backed up into the shadows and watched him. He could have sworn he saw the glint of steel flash as the whip nearly snapped against her nose. She was unafraid, but very cautious. He felt the power ripple through him, begging to be tamed. The whip snapped back the other direction and Nox caught a glimpse of firelight in two shining orbs. It was black as night. There was only one thought in his mind. He could see the memory flailing in his mind as he tumbled off the mound of dirt he had been standing on.

Nox twisted his ankle and lost the power just as the two glowing orbs pounced at him. There was no ring of steel as he had expected to hear when he saw the blade pierce the creatures body. Blood dripped on his face as the small girl tossed the beast to the side and yanked out her sword.

She turned to look at him, the look on her face was far more frightening than the beast had been. She looked at Nox like he was the monster, some prey. He felt fear rise up in him. And as quick as the look had been, it was gone. But there was no smile, no frown, no sign of any emotion at all. That was almost as scary as the last emotion that had displayed on that face.

She wore a leather trench coat, Nox caught a glimpse of another blade at her hip, something smaller, and lighter. She offered him a gloved hand which Nox took. Something told him not to grasp for the power, she could likely run him through with that sword of hers. He grinned, now that the immediate danger had left, Nox was back to himself. "Thanks Duckling."

Nox went over to the creature and kicked it. Yup, deader than a door nail. The memory of before floated through his mind. A creature of unknown origin, unseen to the world mauled a woman, he felt sadness and loss and hatred. He kicked the thing again and again. The fury came but he didn't know where it came from, but the urge for revenge was great.

Edited by Nox, Sep 29 2014, 12:19 PM.
Pyotr was relieved to get a message from Nox. He had to admit, it felt good having friends. He had Jensen, Nox, and Bas now. Also Michelle - and people at work had quit teasing him. They had noticed a change - especially when Yegor tried to push him around again. He didn't fight him, but he sure as hell didn't back down either. People were respecting him and Pyotr felt like a new man.

"Playing with fire. Care to join me?"
The wording of the message made Pyotr smile. Pyotr really enjoyed Nox's carefree attitude.

Pyotr responded in the affirmative and got Nox's location - in the Underground City. Pytor had never been there and in the past he probably never would have. He had a sense of adventure now. He hoped that Nox would help him with his block. Marcus hadn't been able to work up the time to help. It was kind of getting frustrating, but, oh well, the life of the Sigma.

Pyotr followed the directions to Nox's location and found him with a woman. Heh - she was hot. There was something on the ground and Nox was kicking at it. Confused, Pyotr approached. He didn't know the woman and was about to greet Nox and introduce himself to his lady-friend when he noticed that the thing on the ground was some...weird...creature-thing.

"What the the hell is that thing?"
Bas sipped at his wine as he pushed his plate back, not full but content. Roman looked across the table from him. "Nice job with Boris....and his brother. The Kolomov's were pretty pissed I'll tell you. Seems to be working, though. We've expanded into more of Vlad's area."

Bas smiled. That had been pretty sweet day. Interesting, to say the least. Had made a few friends too, including one little investment he hoped paid dividends one day. The kind that made toes curl and throaty moans the neighbors heard. Heh. Maybe. It was funny. Sasha had been the one to hook him, what with that face and that ass. He still thought about that from time to time. Still might giver her a call too. Two investments, really. One ready to tap far sooner than the other, he would wager. But what Ayden might have lacked in the ass-department- and it wasn't bad by any means, no siree, that was for sure. Just not as perfectly apple shaped and round and bitable as Sasha's had been- she certainly made up for in every other way. Sasha had become more boring as the day had progressed. Whereas Ayden had only become more intriguing. But she was engaged. More to the point she was happily engaged. Aye, there's the rub. Oh well. Investments sometimes took time to pay off.

"Just tell me that we have a line of Vlad's supplier- or his stache of the Ambrosia. Shit, but that stuff was good. Best night of my life, taking that stuff."
Well, almost. He thought back to Alex. Talk about sexual napalm. Between her...whatever it was, and his power, God in heaven but had that been something. Got his heart racing just remembering it. And it seemed as much for her as for him. They'd hooked up a few times since then- usually late at night- and each time it was better. It seemed odd him having a...not relationship. He didn't do those. But a regular sex-thing with a cop. Still, both of them got something out of it. He knew he did, anyway. And she wasn't that good of an actress. She did too. It hadn't gotten boring yet. He was sorta curious to see where else it could go, anyway.

"Nah. Nothing yet. We've got some our people on it but so far, all they can figure out is that it's mostly sugar. Now how sugar does that, I'll never know. Leave it to Vlad to have kept that secret to his death, the bastard." Bas shrugged. He didn't really need it. Had just been curious. Roman called over Vitorio and paid the bill, for which Bas saluted him in thanks. "No problem, brateek" After a moment, "You want to hit up Kalisti? Heard they got a new girl or three." He grinned.

Bas thought for a moment. Part of him wanted to....but that would only put him in the mood. And then he'd be calling Alex. He looked at his watch. It was still too early for that. Theirs usually was a post-10pm hook up schedule. "Ehh....I don't really feel like it right now. Feeling some energy. Been a slow couple'a' days. Maybe hit the gym."
He looked down at the plate. "Work off some of this pasta,"
he said with a smile.

Roman shrugged. "All good brateek. Be sure to get a few more cuts and bruises. Makes you look less like a prettyboy and more like a thug." A laugh to show he was joking. While Bas might be "pretty" nobody took him for a prettyboy. At least not more than once- and usually not anything ever after that either. But he laughed at the comment.

"Will try boss. Can't help if I'm too fast for them."
His wallet buzzed and he looked at it. A smile crept onto his face. "Playing with fire. Care to join me?"
Now this might be the fight he was looking for.

"What is it?" asked Roman curiously. He looked up at him and smiled.

"Got a new sparring partner. And he wants a fight."
Roman looked at him for a moment.

"This legit Bas?" He smiled at the ridiculousness of the question after a moment, given the nature of their work. Laughing, "I mean, you're not out making us unnecessary enemies are you?" Roman was his friend. But he was his father's son too.

Bas smiled reassuringly. "Nah, Roman. He's a good guy. Met him at Gracie's a few nights ago. Had a good match and went out for drinks. He was a bit out of fighting shape and think he wants to get back into it quickly."
He shrugged and took a sip of the water instead of wine. "It's all good, man."
Roman looked at him for a moment and then shrugged. He knew Bas. Bas was pretty simple, over all. Cared about his family, his friends and himself. That was pretty much it. Anything that benefited them, he did. Anything that threatened them, he removed. Simple as that. And he was content with that. Roman knew that.

After Bas left, he followed Nox's text to the tunnels and finally made it down where they were. It smelled something fierce and he was glad that he'd not been wearing anything nice beyond a simple leather jacket and jeans and a shirt- along with his always on thick black boots.

Of course he saw Nox and Pyotr right away and nodded to them. Nox looked angry and tense and Pyotr questioning. At least he was there instead of pussing out. Good for the kid. But almost as immediate was the hot-little number standing next to them. She wore a long coat that unfortunately meant that he didn't get a chance to check her out in those jeans. Did catch a flash of curve in her leg or over her shirt, enough to say that a long jacket was definitely unwanted. Pretty thing, if a bit pouty mouthed. He liked his women to smile. Well, more than smile, really. This one looked like smiling was a chore. Too bad. Far too pretty to frown at life. There was something familiar about her though he couldn't put his finger on it. After a moment, he let it go. Oh well.

Soon enough, he forgot about the girl. He looked on the ground and saw this...he didn't know what the hell it was. Looked like a man but....bigger. Harrier. Had claws of some sort. The black around its body glistened in the dim light and he realized it was blood.

For the first time, he was utterly shocked. "What the hell is that thing?"
He looked around at each of them. "What the hell are we doing here?"
Aria watched as he flicked the whip at the shadowy creature. The man lost his footing. It was like watching a slow motion real of some sports game, he fell backwards, the creature pounced. Aria could see the powerful legs and the powerful jaws. It was more human looking than Aria liked. Adrenaline coursed through her body. She could feel the creatures hunger and in an instant she could feel the man's confusion, his fear. Everything mixed together and there was nothing left but death. Someone was going to die. Aria preferred it be the creature as she ran and intercepted the beast as it was nearly on top of the man who no longer held the power.

Aria felt the creature die, felt it's last pang of hunger, the sword through it's heart, the warm blood cooled on her hand as it dripped from the wound to her sword. Only the leather gloves protected her hands. Who knew what contagions this creature contained. Aria had never seen the likes of it before.

Aria had enjoyed the kill, enjoyed the creatures death. She turned to look at the fallen godling, the fear was apparent. She could make him feel pain. Aria wanted to, she really did, but she pushed it away. His power could come in handy, Aria could feel more of those creatures heading their direction.

Aria offered the man her left hand, the other was slicked with blood and of no use to help him up. He thanked her, calling her "duckling". Aria wasn't sure if she should be offended by being called a cute little fluffy yellow animal that waddled on land. His smile and the lack of animosity in his feelings was about the only reason she let it go. He was dangerous, but right now, she wasn't exactly sure what was more dangerous, the unknown creatures or the godling that had combat training. Michael had been the only one she'd ever met who was that dangerous, and Aria was thankful she was not on his bad side.

He went over to the creature. Aria stood back and watched, his emotions rattled from one end of the spectrum to the other like he was playing back a bad memory. Sadness and loss followed by hatred and vengeance. The pain called to Aria. She wanted to touch his pain so much but she kept herself in check. Kept focus on Lucas, on what was right. Aria could almost feel the battle inside her, it would never stop, it would rage on until the end of her days.

Aria felt more people approaching. Aria turned with her sword drawn as another man asked. "What the hell is that?"

What the hell is this a party or something? Aria looked down the tunnel at yet another fellow walking towards them. Same question. Aria smiled, she was glad she wasn't the only one who had no clue. He looked at the other men.

This place was getting crowded and the creatures were starting to take up position. Aria shook her head. "I don't know."
She put her hand on the godling's arm and set calming feelings to him. "You need to stop that. Calm down."
Touching him had not been the best idea in the world. She could feel the muscles in his arm tense with each blow, the layers of cloth was not dampening his emotions. His fury pulsed inside of her. She could feel the hatred and the pain. The creatures were coming.

"What the hell are we doing here?"
The question brought him out of his revenge stupor. And Aria with it. It was really the only thing Aria could say it was. He turned to Aria with a question in his eyes. He looked down at her hand on his arm and Aria instinctively dropped it. She could feel the questions still flowing through him. But it was more than that. He grabbed her left arm and pulled her glove off. Aria watched as emotions rattled through his head. He shook it confused, he was more confused now than before. He towered over her but Aria wasn't afraid. She took her glove back and put it in her pocket. "More are coming."
He looked back at her, the fog clearing until he was gone. Aria could feel the heat from the coil of air and fire in his hand. He understood, but did the others.
Nox heard his friends say something. But he was too busy, too fueled with hatred that he kept kicking the downed creature. The memory of the woman dying, the claw marks ripping her body apart, the blood spurting from her ripped out throat. The horror of it, he felt so lost, so afraid, he was frozen in time, he could do nothing. He did nothing. Tears fell.

He felt the girl put her hand on his arm. It had a calming affect. Reality seeped in. He knew Bas and Weasel.. Pyotr were there. The girl. Bas' question pulled him out of his memories. The mark on the woman's arm, it was etched into his head. He turned to look at the girl. Why did he want to look at her arm? Why was it important? What was going on? He reached for her arm, she didn't flinch. She let him touch her, she knew what he was feeling he could see it in her eyes. Concern, and yet it reflected back at him. He knew he shouldn't know something about her, but he couldn't put his finger on it. The glove slipped off and there was the snake eating its own tail, it wasn't identical, but the symbology remained the same. The tattoo looked near fresh, still healing. But it didn't all look the same, not the same artist. What the hell did it mean?

She took her glove back and tucked it in her pocket. There was no fear in her eyes, well maybe a little, but he was pretty sure that was his fear echoing back from her. She looked up at him, those green eyes were pools of emotion, he could get lost, and yet he knew he couldn't. Bad things could happen. But she spoke softly. "More are coming."

It took Nox a few moments to understand exactly what she meant. He looked down at the creature and then back at her. He saw a smile creep on to her face when he created the fire whip. He grinned back at her. He hadn't expected this sort of dance. But it felt like coming home.

He grinned. "You heard the little duckling. More are coming."
Nox dropped the end of the whips he'd been coiling up. The flames licked the floor and Nox pulled in more power. "Ante-up boys, we have us a fight."

It was probably a bad thing that he'd invited them down here. Bas could handle himself, Pyotr, Nox wasn't so sure of. The girl pulled Pytor closer to him. She must have known something. "Before we all die."
He grinned mischievously, more to scare weasel boy than anything. "Bas. Pyotr. Been great knowing you. Duckling, I didn't catch your name."

Edited by Nox, Sep 29 2014, 04:15 PM.
Pyotr was a little confused and the woman pulled him closer to her. To be honest, he didn't mind that. His thoughts were on the more were coming part...and Nox's comment about them all dying. He couldn't tell if Nox was kidding or not. All he knew was that he couldn't use the power unless he was embarrassed. He was literally useless here.

He wondered at what to do to not get in the way. He hoped ninja lady could use that sword well because it appeared that she was pretty much his protection. Pyotr could hear movement in the cave as more of the creatures began to approach.

"Uhhh...guys...I think Ninja Lady is right...and yeah I'm pretty much useless here. Unless you have some way to embarrass me."
He figured no use hiding it. Nox and Bas knew he could use power and Nox had already revealed himself to ninja lady. Even so, the comment was more or less directed at Nox and Bas.

Pyotr kept his eyes open. He'd faced fear before. He could do it again...but Yegor was different - he was human - these things were...God what were they. He began to have trouble focusing and keeping his thoughts straight. Maybe Nox wasn't lying - maybe they were all gonna die.
Nox didn't really answer what the thing was. He seemed to be in the grip of something. The chick put her hand on his arm and that seemed to calm him. Bas was uncomfortable and prayed, feeling the power flow into him. It was as if a light had gone on in the tunnel because everything was clearer. That thing on the was like it was human but not, not with those claws and...looking closer, those teeth.

"If they bite or scratch you they will infect you!"
the chick called out.

Suddenly his enhanced hearing hear skittering in the tunnel from either end. Oh shit! Sounded like a lot of...things. It would be more of them. The smells coming to him said so, there was something off about them. At Nox's comment, he laughed. Well, they had talked about sparing. Course, this wasn't what he'd meant, Bas was sure. Still, there was no quick teacher than someone trying to kill you. The lessons were about the same, really. It was the test at the end that was different. One left you on the ground looking up and figuring out what you did wrong. The other left you dead.

And of course there was no question. Bas would pass this test. He looked over at Nox and his whip. He looked at the weaves and thought he saw how it was done. Air woven just so with a bit of edged fire. Course just because you had a whip didn't mean you knew jack-shit about how to use it. He swung it about and nearly hit himself with the tip. He coulda hit the others too. Nah, too dangerous. He let the weave go and decided to do what he knew. And he knew how to blow things up.

Just as the first wave of creatures- he really couldn't tell how many there were- came into view, he wove a special weave of earth that he'd found very potent, air to compress it, and then fire. The explosion was loud, amplified by the walls of the tunnel which also shook. IDIOT! No sense in bringing the roof down on them. Nox was facing the other direction, as was the girl. Pyotr was with her, but damned if Bas knew what would embarress him. Idly he thought of cutting the guys pants off so he stood out there dangling in front of everyone...but given the tension, he doubted anyone would notice. More to the point, Pyotr running around with pants around his ankles would probably mean he died. He liked the kid enough to not want that to happen. At least, not by his doing.

He would have laughed at the image, but he was too busy sending explosive weaves. That first one had been a bit to strong so he compressed the air less, though he did add more fire. The result was an exploding fireball. Those things went down, but there were more coming. And getting closer, he moved closer to Nox and the others, sending more explosions, alternating with weaves of air to push the things back and give them time. He looked back briefly and saw that the chick and Nox had their hands full too.

He felt panic. Damn, but this was going to be close! But at the same time, the energy surging through him, the explosions, the sounds, it was like the dance of life. And he loved dancing.
Aria was pretty sure she didn't like being called ninja lady or duckling. But it wasn't the first time someone had called her ninja lady, had any of them actually ever met a ninja? Yeah she wasn't one, Takeo had been a real life ninja, mask and all. Aria shook her head at the memory. It was the start to a very good night that had a very bad ending. The thought made the darkness creep in. And the hungry from the creatures was getting stronger, Aria didn't hide it, didn't fight it. She let it in. The danger of doing so did not escape her.

"If they bite or scratch you they will infect you!"
Which may or may not be true, but Aria had to send the warning, she didn't want to have to explain to their family why they were dead.

One of the men emanated fear, Aria pulled him closer to her, what the hell had they come down to the tunnels for. Two out of the three were godlings, the fearful one said he needed to be embarrassed, what? But Aria obliged him as the first wave of creatures hit. She grabbed his hand with her left and dug deep inside him, and found embarrassing emotions, she didn't care the memories that would flood his mind but she grabbed them and fed them back to him. For whatever reason it had better be worth it. And he slipped from her senses. For crying out loud!"

Her comment didn't draw any attention but she let the last godlings had go. She took mental note of the phenomenon, she'd deal with it later. A creature came at them, the man with the whip missed on and Aria's sword pierced it's body before it lunged at her face. Aria prayed that the blood wasn't going to get in any open wounds, that would be one hell of a way to die too. She sighed. It was the last real thought of the battle, everything else was instinct.

Aria moved around the three godlings, keeping things that got close away from them. She wasn't going to wade into the middle of the creatures no matter how tempting it may seem. The fight was chaotic. Everything happened so fast. The ceiling shook from time to time. A crash so loud it rattled her teeth. But still the things came. "This isn't going to work. We need to stop them from coming any closer to the surface."
If they couldn't kill them all, they had to stop them from reaching the surface, closing this tunnel permanently was the best idea at the moment, but she wasn't the one with the power to do that.


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