“That I am,” Ruzatz agreed with his wife, nodding gently along with his words. There was simply no denying the fact that the two – demon and human alike – were quite in love. The Prime Sin had never pretended, not even for a moment, that all of his heart belonged to Agatha, even in front of his kin. As far as he was concerned, they were the ones that needed adjusting; he was simply learning to roll with the times. But his affection for his wife wasn’t at the forefront of his mind, allowing only that small and brief moment before refocusing on the matter at hand. Serilda was here for a reason and, if they were going to get any answers, it required parts and actions from each one of them in attendance.
Agatha went to fetch her crystal, so that she could properly scry on the God Slayer. Ruzatz watched her go before turning back to Serilda, sighing as he did so. Luckily for them, the Voidwalker seemed to possess something for their needs. She pulled her keychain out and produced a single key, stating that it was the one that he had given to her. The Prime Sin walked over and looked over the item curiously before reaching out to press his finger against it. He wasn’t as keen to reading objects as Agatha or others were but… “Yes, this will do perfectly,” he told her, aiming to relieve any dread she may have had over its usefulness.
Now all they could do was wait for Agatha to return, which wouldn’t be too long. Ruzatz took a step back, reminding himself of Serilda’s cautious nature towards his race and was preparing to move back to his chair when the Voidwalker spoke to him. He raised a brow as she spoke to him, addressing the fact that her favor wasn’t small, easy… or without consequences. Indeed, the Fallen Goddess would rain hell down upon him and his if she ever discovered he was the one that had assisted her. With that knowledge, Serilda told him that if any dared to intervene in his peace, she would want to know as soon as possible. She refused to allow him to take the punishment full blow. He smiled gently. “I shall, Lady Sinclair. But I promise if Faera does come looking for me and mine, she’ll get more of a fight than she’s truly prepared for,” he said with confidence and pride, waving out towards the people in the gallery. “You see, these aren’t just people who adore perversion – they’re more like free spirits. They wish to live out their lives as they best see fit, eager to go where they aren’t supposed to and try things others might frown upon. You’d be surprised how many people try to stop them and not through all-together peaceful means either. They’ve trained their magics to protect themselves, as well as others too. So if anyone comes knocking in an attempt to interrupt our peace, they’ll find hell like many don’t even know.”
The ‘Titan’ part of their name was not merely embellishment – it was a statement for their strength. The titans of legend once sought to defy the gods, who ruled over the world with selfishness and corruption. The Lusty Titans weren’t as drastic or revolutionary but they did not follow the strict lines of most other guilds either. They defied the proletariat so they could seek their own happiness and helped any that sought to walk along the same path. The added benefit was that each one of them also enjoyed a little bit of fooling around, something that was never a requirement of experience. But any that wished to join needed to understand that sometimes the guild hall would devolve into one giant orgy of bodies.
Serilda’s thoughts weren’t completely empty yet though, as she expressed her vow that she would attempt to push aside her preconceptions of demons, at least when it came to him. It wasn’t applied to all but she would remember what he had done for her since their meeting, in what seemed like such a long time ago. “I appreciate that, Serilda,” he said, addressing her less formally in an attempt to show his humility to her words. “And you have my word I will do my best never to give you reason to fall back on your word.”
As their private, familiar moment passed, Agatha finally returned with her crystal ball. She set it on the closest table, the trio gathering around as Agatha attuned the crystal to Mythal’s essence. The Prime Sin couldn’t help the small smile that came to his face as he looked at his wife. When he had first met her, this kind of magic would have taken her a full rotation of the sun to complete. Of course, back then, he had been a far more rigid and proper demon lord. How marriage and soulful combination had changed them both, for the better it seemed. She finished the spell and held her hands over the orb, masterfully channeling the crystal with magic. Dark, ominous smoke appeared in its core, filling the entirety of the glass ball. And after a brief, terrifying moment of absolute silence… there was sound. The echoes of battle echoed out from the globe, the unmistakable cries of agony and pain as souls were brought low. There was a familiar cry that sparked recognition in the Prime Sin and Serilda – Mythal’s voice above the mass of violent noise. “I’ll be damned…” Ruzatz said, scoffing but also smiling. The God Slayer was still alive!
Serilda demanded she be sent as close to him as possible, something Ruzatz hadn’t been planning. His invasion into Kingdom Darkness would be far more obvious were he to open a portal closer to her subjects. He’d planned on slicing open the rift between worlds a couple of miles above the ground, so that she could free fall directly into the battle. But given how riotous the noise was coming from the crystal ball, he wasn’t sure he had that option. Agatha asked the Voidwalker to wait a moment so she could place a protective spell over them, as the air in the realm was poisonous to any that entered that didn’t belong to Faera’s control. In truth, the entirety of the realm was more dangerous than that but the other corruption required a lot longer exposure than that.
It seemed Ozorith had planned for just this situation, not surprising Ruzatz in the least bit. Her armor, as little as there was, was specifically enchanted to protect her from the magical essence within the realm. If it truly protected her against Faera was one thing but he deeply hoped that trial through fire wasn’t meant for the Voidwalker in this instance. The Star Wolf was the only one that required protection and Agatha quickly and efficiently weaved a protection spell over the hound, protecting Xiuhcoatl for the, hopefully, short time they would be there. Serilda thanked them for their actions and asked that should the worst come to pass, that they inform her family of what had happened. Ruzatz nodded gently before he sighed and closed his eyes. The air in front of him shimmered with magical power before it gave way to a solid object; a bound and wrapped whip of bright, white magic energy. It was smoking gently, undulating much like darkness magic might had it found itself injected with light. And wasn’t that just what Ruzatz had as a magical blessing – the power of a Hell Demon Slayer. He snatched the whip from the air and unrolled it with a quick flick of his wrist to the side.
“Be warned, Serilda,” he said as the weapon began to glow brighter in his grip, magic energy funneling into the weapon. “This is a one way portal. Once you are through, it will close behind you. You’re only way out of Kingdom Darkness is going to be through the door. I’ve never heard of any opening it that weren’t given explicit power to do so… so my advice is to find a head honcho and take his key. Oh and one last thing…” he said, flashing a smirk. “Kick some serious ass while you’re in there.”
With that said, he brought the whip up above his head, spinning it in a perfect circle of shadowy light. Then he snapped it forward, the weapon releasing a loud crack as it hit its full extension. And there, at its absolute extreme point, reality split open into a vertical tear of white light. Beyond the glowing entryway was only darkness, far darker than any shadow that ever appeared in their world. Once Serilda had stepped through, it would sew itself back up without sound or order, reversing the wound that had been made.
Ruzatz threw the whip into the air and it disappeared with a flash of light, storing itself within the pocket realm he rarely utilized nowadays. He looked over at Agatha briefly, giving her a small smile of hope before he reached into his pocket and pulled out his very own iLac. He pressed a few buttons on the screen and then brought it up to his ear, the device ringing. After a brief few seconds of ringing, someone picked up. “Ignacio. I think you have some explaining to do.”
The sounds of battle were everywhere, or so it seemed. Mythal’s sense of the world was so scrambled at the moment that he couldn’t quite place where there wasn’t fighting and where there was. That wasn’t quite true – he certainly knew where there was fighting, as it was almost exclusively revolving around him or Gren. The dark forces of Faera’s had come swarming en masse and hadn’t let up the entire trip from the prison to their open battlefield here. If he was going to die, he much preferred it to be outside anyways.
The prison guards hadn’t been very impressive, to say the least. Mythal himself had managed to land single punches and kicks to each one to knock them through the walls. As he and Gren searched for an entryway to get out, they kept running into group after group of soldiers. They looked both oddly different and strangely familiar, all at the same time. Their faces were human like, along with their bodies and major features. They didn’t have wings, like the God Slayer had expected from angels, but there was a dark aura about them. There was also the fact that all of them had the same kind of eyes – pitch black irises with black veins filling their sclera. Even their equipment resembled that of what one would find in his regular world, though the blades and points were all as black as obsidian. The God Slayer weaved between slashes, stabs and swings to land strike after strike, his bare fists proving more potent that the weapons from the angelic guardsmen. He and Gren traveled up and down the building in search of an exit, the structure itself seeming to change to keep them lost. Eventually Mythal grew sick of simply running around and began to dismantle the building wall by wall, floor after floor. The prison lurched and fell away in several places and finally they found a hole that led to a tangible pathway outside.
Of course, by then, hundreds of Faera’s forces had gathered outside just in case this happened. Overwhelming two enemies of the realm seemed easy given their numbers but one could only imagine their surprise when Mythal and Gren dove into the stream of angelic forces and began to carve their way through the masses. They had no sense of direction, no real destination in mind – they would simply fight in hopes of finding some path that led them out of there. Despite Gren having seen little to no combat during his training, he moved like a pro; he weaved between angel’s legs and nipped at them, distracting the enemies for Mythal to swoop in and deliver a fatal blow. The God Slayer invoked every attack he had ever learned as he fought in a near three hundred sixty degree circle. Bodies and faces began to bleed together as he dodged and countered and punched and kicked and grabbed. It felt like hours, days even, before he finally delivered another punch that crumbled an angel’s body and realized that they had cleared out all of the forces… at least for now.
They had several paths to choose from and no idea which one was the right way. All directions seemed to lead towards more endless darkness and without signs or idea, it was almost a roulette of chance and danger whether they found salvation or further damnation. Luckily they got the opportunity to avoid a guessing game – one of the angels had survived the assault, long enough for Mythal to drag him up and demand answers. After a bit of squeezing, in the literal sense, the God Slayer learned some very basic details; they were in on the outskirts of Kingdom Darkness, right near where the realm fell off into an endless fall of darkness. It seemed the world developed based on how many occupants lived within it and, as more came in, the further the world grew. But there was a literal end to it all and that pit had no stop if one were to fall into it. The angel explained, in pained detail, that it was here that the door to the other realm, Mythal’s home realm, had been built by the gods of old. Apparently none were meant to pass through it unless it was absolutely necessary but at some point, the Fallen Goddess had decided to disobey that high law. Special rituals could be done to allow the celestial denizens of this world to take over mortal bodies and pass through the door without issue, so long as they possessed a special ‘key’. Unfortunately once one had used the key to come back into Kingdom Darkness, it was rendered useless for decades.
That explained why Archimedes had remained in the human world for so long. He didn’t want to return unless he was absolutely sure he needed to. Getting Mythal had apparently been enough for him to finally return to his home after over thirty decades. The angel seemed to hint that beyond the special rituals, there was no way to open Kingdom Darkness’ door from this side. But Mythal wasn’t having it and after learning the path to bring him to the door, he was quick to put his information broker down like his brethren.
The trip to the door wasn’t easy either; more angelic forces set upon them from every side. They were sporadic; special groups that were probably sent in to try and slow him down while the remainder gathered to swarm them. They were dispatched much like their brothers and sisters but not as easily as when they had started. Mythal’s magical core was already fairly drained and the constant battling was beginning to wane on him. By the time they reached the rise on the path that would lead them down to the door, Mythal had to take a moment and breath.
Gren’s whimpered gently as he walked over and brushed himself against the God Slayer, who had taken to one knee. He laughed softly between his breaths as he reached down and scratched the pup. “Don’t worry, bud… I’m not done yet,” he said softly, lifting himself a bit so he could sit with a straight back. The dark, starry skies shone down upon them from all sides, the purple lights as alien as everything else in this realm. The closer he got to the edge of the realm, the stranger it seemed to get – there were now floating pieces of land all around him, islands made of the same gray soil that had made up the ‘ground’ near the prison. A part of him, the part he imagined came from his bastard of a father, found comfort in the strange sights of the dark realm. The human part of him was just… well, truth be told he was rather ambivalent. But this didn’t feel like a home to him. It felt more like a place from a dream or a nightmare. “Pro’lly gonna haunt me for the rest of my days,” he said with a groan as he got back to his feet, feeling all the aches in his body cry out all at the same time.
He pushed forward, the eager hound running right beside him. As he came over the crest of the hill, he felt the energy in his core sigh once more as he laid eyes upon the massive army. They had all gathered on the circular plot of land at the bottom of the path and there, floating in the sky just past them, was the door. It was the same on this side as it had been on the other – its pearlescent sheen an eyesore against the dark backdrop of the realm. This army was… different. There were similar soldiers to the ones he had fought already but there were others too. Massive, troll-looking beings made of blackened stone, small white eyes glaring up at the God Slayer. They held large stone blades that were clearly meant for bashing rather than slicing – which would be easy, since they were roughly twice the size of Mythal. Floating over the giant’s backs were creatures that looked like shadow ghosts. They had no legs to speak of, only wispy smoky tails that whipped to and fro. Their torsos were covered in armor and they bore a hood that covered their heads. Beneath the hood was a white mask, painted in red and blue tribal markings. They each held a single sword in one hand and a shadow leash that seemed to connect to the giant’s necks in the other.
Mythal looked out at all the enemies before him and sighed, shaking his head softly. He looked down at the Star Wolf, also looking out at the forces but not looking nearly as defeated. The pup looked up and wuffed softly, ever the constant source of confidence. “I know; you’d think they’d actually try and stop us,” Mythal quipped, finding a bit of humor in the moment.
Gren wuffed again, his tail wagging to and fro. He was ready whenever the God Slayer was. Mythal looked past the enemies and at the door, the only barrier between him and freedom. As he had to do was get through this last army. That alone was enough to spark some will in his soul. “One last push,” he said aloud, more for himself than Gren. His right arm sparked to life, the dark gauntlet taking for mover his hand and squeezing shut in a fist. He inhaled slowly through his nose and then released it through his mouth.
And then he charged. Gren took off right beside him, each one of them racing down the hill at full speed. The army began to shift and move, several members of the soldiers funneling onto the path to intercept the incoming God Slayer. They were the first to fall as Mythal gave himself an extra speed boost, flinging himself through the entire front line as a flying punch. He rolled across the ground and popped back up to his feet, throwing punches and kicks to all the enemies that came rushing in at him. He dodged to the left and right as swords and daggers were stabbed at his body, countering back with magically infused strikes. Gren came barking in, sliding beneath the legs of one soldier and biting his ankle. As the angel gasped in pain, he was swiftly planted afterwards by Mythal leaping at him with his fist. From there, the God Slayer siphoned the magic from his gauntlet into his hand, the orb of darkness swirling against his flesh. “Chaos Blast!” He roared as he unleashed a beam of shadow into the foray of soldiers, ripping dozens of them apart in one fell swoop.
Gren barked in response to the blast and turned his attention to the other side. His growl began to gain traction and volume, as if he was suddenly growing in the instant. Behind his bared teeth, something swirled about. Then when he opened his mouth again to bark, a beam of darkness erupted from his throat and similarly decimated the other direction of enemies. Mythal spun to stare at the hound as the beam dissipated, the small pup coughing a puff of shadow out once before righting himself, licking his chops. “Well that’s not terrifyin’,” he quipped again, smiling at the hound. Gren wuffed excitedly, just as a shadow suddenly loomed over both of them. The God Slayer glanced up in time to see the massive sword of one of the giant’s over them, now beginning to fall towards them. He dove and wrapped up Gren in his arms as he rolled out of the way of the strike. The ground thrummed and lurched from the impact, sending both Mythal and Gren airborne from the strength of the quake.
As Mythal came down to the ground and landed, Gren rolled out of his grip and hopped up onto his shoulder. As the God Slayer turned to face the giant that had attacked them, the hound growled once more at the other forces behind him. At the same time they burst into action; Gren leapt at the closest angel and wrapped his jaws around its throat, bringing it to the ground. Mythal took off towards the giant, who was now turning to face the God Slayer and bring its sword up once more. Mythal bent at the knees briefly before launching himself upwards at the giant, his right arm cocked and then unleashed as he brought it forward into the creature’s face. The crack of bones breaking reverberated across the immediate area and the giant stumbled backwards. But another, smaller sword shot through the air and pierced the God Slayer’s shoulder, causing him to cry out in pain. He was pulled like a dog on a leash towards the top of the giant, where the small, ghost-like creature hovered. Yet Mythal was able to fight through his pain enough to thrust out his foot as he came within the creature’s proximity, divorcing its head from its neck. Mythal landed hard on the giant’s head as it started to fall backwards, the sword in his shoulder dissipating and leaving only a blood wound.
He leapt back down to the ground, rolling in his landing, and popped back up to continue the fight. Gren rushed over to him out of the mass of angels, taking up the spot right next to his left leg. Angels and beasts surrounded them on all sides, putting them right in the middle of the kill box. Yet none of them were making any moves whatsoever – they all kept a fair distance away from Mythal and Gren, all standing side by side. The clanking of armor and weapons filled the temporary peace with reminders f the dangers that lay all around. Before Mythal could make a move of his own, he heard the oddest sound coming from above; clapping.
“Now that is the kind of son I expected to have,” Archimedes’ voice bore down on them. Both Gren and Mythal looked up to see the Archangel hovering in the air, slowly descending from the sky. As his feet touched the ground, he ceased his clapping and let his arms drop. “Resistant to the last. And strong to boot.”
“Come back over here and I’ll remind you how strong I am,” Mythal snapped.
“Oh I’m good, laddy. That cheap shot ye landed on me is enough to remind me of my follies,” Archimedes’ tone shifted suddenly, angry and insulted. “But I’ll wear that scar as a badge o’ pride after Faera hollows ye body out for her own.”
“Ain’t gonna happen. I’ll fight and fight and keep on fightin’ until you got no choice but to kill me,” Mythal spat back. Gren wuffed in agreement.
“Don’t think I cannae feel how weak ye are, how low yer magic is. You’ve put up a good fight but you don’t have much left in the canister. Few more minutes and you’ll be ripe for the takin’,” Archimedes returned to his confident self. He lifted his hand slowly, smirking as gestured towards the man and his pup. “Kill the dog. But make sure you keep the man alive.”
Their orders issued, the army around Mythal started to move forward. The God Slayer scoffed and fell into a defensive stance, his head moving on a swivel as he checked all his sides. They were completely surrounded and with Archimedes backing them up, now it certainly looked like they had reached the end of the road. So close to the door and now it felt like they had their backs to it more than anything else. Still, if they had come this far, at least they could say they fought their hardest. As much as the idea of Gren dying sickened him, he knew that they would be together after this. All he regretted was not having had the courage to tell Serilda how he had felt before it was far too late.
And it was, perhaps, that very thought that brought the light. It shone down from the sky with such an unearthly presence that everyone in the immediate area was blinded. Mythal bent down and covered Gren, fearing that this was some finishing spell meant to render them both defeated. But rather than the two of them losing their strengths, it was the cries of the army around them that drew his gaze upward. The angels and creatures that encircled the God Slayer were… in agony. Their armors and weapons were melting into ash, lost to the air and leaving them unprotected and disarmed. Every one of them grabbed at their skulls and groaned in pain, many of them falling to their knees as the agony became too much to bear standing. The ground also began to shake violently, several of the floating islands just beyond the platform cracking and breaking apart.
The light came down from the heavens and slammed into the ground near Mythal and Gren, rending the ground into a wide crater. As his eyes began to focus on the particular details of the light, they widened in awe at the sight of familiarity. There stood Xiuhcoatl, her normal dark coat nearly as bright as the sun. She was at the ready, her teeth bared and her fur on end. But if she was here, that meant…
His gaze turned to see the woman standing just beside her, nearly within arm’s reach. It was Serilda, the white knight who had somehow found a way into the realm to make quite the violent and abrasive entrance. Her armor was different, far flashier and open than she was used to bearing and there was another sheath upon her hip. But without a doubt it was the Voidwalker. His breath caught in his throat as all he could do was stare at her, unable to truly comprehend what was happening.
Archimedes though… his head was cocked slightly, a brow raised as he stared at the woman. Her voice broken through the agonized screams of the angelic forces, her ultimatum given with the full authority of one who felt she was in charge. Surrender or suffer the consequences – fairly routine in terms of these kinds of deals but all too strange to the Archangel and his forces. Never had anyone dared to hold such a standard to him or his people. A wry, wicked grin tugged at his face as he chuckled, clearly amused. “Aye, lass, aye – now that’s some boldness ye got there,” he said, bringing his hands up to clap once more. “Methinks I far misjudged ye before; ye got some spunk in ye. Mythal, my boy – ye got yerself a worthy lass here. Willin’ to throw herself into the deepest darkness just for a chance to save her beloved… or at least die with him. Ye have my respect.”
“But that ain’t gonna be enough to save ye.” As he finished his words, his body began to shift. His skin ran over with shadow, a purple hue trailing after the darkness that pigmented his skin. His ears began to expand backwards, growing long and pointed as they aimed in the opposite direction. The dark robe he wore tore as bone-like spines began to emerge from his shoulders and forearms, each spikes brimming with magic. Long, black horns thrust out of his temples and slithered towards the sky. Purple, glowing veins appeared in his chest, creating an odd symbol that was beyond comprehension. His hair grew even longer, swinging down low until it was past his rear. Then hideous, demonic-looking wings thrust out from his shoulder blades and spread open, their sharp fingers topped with razors. His eyes filled in with a deep, glowing purple fluid that seemed to fill the immediate area with despair. The final touch to his change was a black halo that wrapped around and above his horns, moving and flowing like a river.
As he finished his demonic transformation, he snickered. “Shake off your shackles,” he demanded, his voice now deep and brimming with power. He waved his hand and darkness began to flow upwards from the ground around them, hardening and blacking out the entirety of the land beyond the circle. It swallowed up the angelic forces, their cries lost to the shadows as they disappeared within. The dome rose up and completed its formation, locking everyone within its core along with the Archangel. His hand twitched once more and a broadsword appeared in his hand, a long and taloned weapon with glowing purple runes across the flat edge of the blade. “Now then… let us see what you are capable of.”
|Unknown Lands||Fairy Tail|