The trees shiver in the cold night breeze, masking the sound of intruders’ footsteps. They stepped ever so carefully through the woods as they approached the walls of Rem, so close to their first goal, slowly making their way to the prize. The Vindicators had to move as silently and stealthily as possible, for if they were to be caught, they would never see outside the walls ever again; in order for them to win the war against the Hunters, they needed to kill their leader, Autumn Lowe, the Countess and ruler of Rem, the capital of Hollow.
They step gingerly as they approach the towering walls of Rem; the Vindicators do not speak as it would create too much noise; instead, they sign to each other.
“All three of us will have to work together for this to work.”
One of the other men starts to sign, but he is interrupted by their leader talking once again,
“I am talking. We need to arrange a plan; if we don’t, we will be slaughtered.”
The leader proceeded to pull out a map and started laying out the plan when the follower removed his hood and shouted out,
“If the plan involves three of us, why are there four people standing here?”
Everyone stood in silence, slowly heads started turning, trying to see under each other’s hoods,
“Alright, everyone hoods off; it turns out we were never alone out here.”
One by one, everyone removed their hoods until they reached the last person who stood perfectly still with a whisper under their breath. The three Vindicators surrounded the hooded stranger, each of them readying for a slaughter. The whispering stopped; the only sound left was that of the trees swaying around them as they stood, each waiting for the other to make a move.
“You should never let your enemy just stand; it will give her more time to plan how she is going to kill you.”
The hooded figure twisted, flicking her cloak into the air as a distraction before leaping out of the circle of Vindicators. She did not run; she stood, sword drawn, at the ready for anything.
“Look at that. We don’t need to go inside the walls; our mark has come to us. Do you really think it is smart for the leader of her people to be out alone during a war, Autumn?”
“If I send my men out to the front lines, I am going to join them in the glory that is slaughtering vindicators; you all look so fresh. Do your elders know you are here?”
“No, we are going to kill you and claim our own leadership among the others.”
“You are not even leaders yet; this will be quick.”
Autumn’s stance lowered, her sword was brought back, and the Vindicators charged one after another. A flurry of stone fists fly at Autumn with great speed, each one blocked with well-placed sword swipes.
“So your skin is too strong for my sword, must not be as new to the order as I thought you were.”
Autumn re-sheathed her sword and pulled two pistols from their holsters; grinning, she spun around, unloading the guns into two of the Vindicators. The green bolts of energy violently exploded as they made contact with each Vindicator; the guns were tossed as soon as pulling the trigger ended with nothing but a low humming noise.
The final Vindicator screamed out with rage; his body was surrounded with a white light as he charged into Autumn once again. As he built up his speed, wings burst from his back; Autumn was taking no chances. She clapped her hands together, and as her hands came apart, a rifle appeared out of the blue, flash being emitted. She dropped into position, pulled the bolt, and let loose a round with a flash that blinded her; once her vision came back, she was face to face with a very angry Vindicator holding a very sizable bullet in his teeth, only to crush it seconds later.
“I am Sephrial, I am going to lead the Vindicators, and it shall start when I return your head to my people, claiming my rightful place as head of the Vindicators.”
Strike after strike, Sephrial plowed his fists into Autumn’s soft skin, each strike bruising and breaking her. Laughing, he pulled her from the ground by the neck.
“You are the feared leader of the hunters; this is a joke; I am about to kill you without breaking a sweat. I have no idea why everyone fears you so much.”
A small green light started blinking on Autumn’s wrist,blood dripping from her mouth as she smiled, clapping her hand together once again, bringing forth her rifle. Before Sephrial had a chance to react, she had pulled the bolt and started to fire, blasting a black scorch mark over Sephrial’s face and dropping Autumn in the process. She saw her chance and took it; she fired each round with increased haste and hate diminishing the once vibrant white glow coming from Sephrial.
“I may be only a soft human and you an unbreakable freak of nature, but I have a drive greater than anything you will ever know; I can’t die, not yet, so I will do everything in my power to overcome any obstacle until I have accomplished my goal. I crave stone blood, and I won’t be satisfied till I have it all!”
As she shouted, she continued to empty her clip; once it ran out, she discarded the cartridge and reloaded another just to continue firing.
“So you wanna know why you should fear me? Because I have the amazing capability to rally people to my aid, Hunters, let’s finish this freak.”
Three plumes of black smoke descended from atop the wall, each presenting someone new as they made contact with the ground. Fully clothed in black with plague masks, each of them moved forward with diligence, weapons in hand, driving them towards Sephrial.
The firing from Autumn stopped as the Hunters drew in close, giving Sephrial the chance to spread his wings and take to the sky at supersonic speeds. As he flew from sight, Autumn collapsed to the ground as her injuries caught up with her.
“Countess, next time, let us come a little earlier; we were waiting that whole time for the sign.”
“I did not expect one of the freaks to be so powerful; I honestly believe he may take over the Vindicators someday.”
“Enough of him. We gotta get you to the healers, can’t have our leader sitting on death’s door now, can we?”
“Of course not; you are always right, Commander Legulate. I can’t die; this war is not over yet.”