Warlock

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Booksie Classic

Chapter 23 (v.1) - Shifter

Submitted: May 14, 2017

Reads: 186

Comments: 20

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Submitted: May 14, 2017

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As the sun sat high in the light blue sky, Kathrina, Logan and Elijah continued their journey through the seemingly endless forest of tall trees. They hadn't spoken to each other at all since they left the clearing, but Logan had noticed that they were slowing down, getting slower and slower as they continued. He wasn't sure why, but he could tell that Kathrina knew.

He didn't say anything, he just continued to follow them as Elijah led the way. Ever since being told about his new self, he didn't want to say anything to either of them. The thought of being the thing he hated the most was making him feel sick. It was like some kind of torture. But he was going to endure it. Not for himself, he wasn't afraid to die, but for his brother. Joe. He was the only family he had left and he couldn't bring himself to taking that away from him.

Just then, Kathrina stopped moving, so he pulled on the horse's reigns and came to a halt. It seemed that Elijah had stopped too, but why? They were still in the middle of the forest. He gently kicked the horse's side and made it trot over to Elijah as he sat there. Kathrina reached out and grabbed hold of Logan's robes, shaking her head. He looked at her strangely, but then peered over at Elijah - His eyes were glowing a lot brighter than he had ever seen them, this time they weren't only green, but had a dark purple color in them too.

Logan stared curiously, slowly moving his horse closer so that he could get a better look. He stood just in front of him, staring into them - It was unlike anything he had ever seen - What looked like a large green glowing four-point star covered most of his eye with three others inside of it, getting smaller in size until they ended at the smallest one which sat in the center of his eyes where his pupil should have been. The smallest was the brightest and the others it was inside shined slightly dimmer. Behind the green was a dark purple, almost pink color. There were several green lines cutting through the purple and kind of looked like even bigger stars.

The two smallest green stars seemed to be pulsing slightly, glowing brighter as they did. He stared in awe - He hadn't seen his eyes up this close before. So, that's his visual power Kathrina told me about, he thought as he continued to stare. But then he hesitated and looked away, waiting. He then glared at Elijah strangely. He was expecting some kind of comment from him, but he said nothing. He continued to stare forward, his eyes glowing brightly. So, Logan continued to admire his eyes-

Suddenly, the glowing green and purple faded quickly until his normal Warlock eyes became visible. Logan froze in embarrassment as Elijah glared at him evilly, frowning. He couldn't tell if it was anger or confusion, maybe even both. He looked away and nudged his horse, but it didn't move. He kicked it again, but it just grunted. He slowly looked up at Elijah who was still glaring at him. Again, he felt intimidated just by looking at him. He had such an evil stare, it made him wonder if he really was an ally.

Then, Elijah blinked slowly and looked away, facing forward again, ''There's a place up ahead where we can rest. We'll make camp and continue the journey in the morning'' he said as he pulled on his horse's reigns, making it start to trot forward again.

Logan quickly followed, ''Why are we going to make camp already? We still have a third of day light left''

''Pretty soon it's going to become too dangerous to be wondering around in the trees. We need to make a fire and ward an area. Warding takes time''

''W- Wait, who the hell is going to make a ward?!'' he exclaimed.

Elijah turned his head and glared at him blankly.

''Y- You?''

''I am no wizard, but I do possess an artifact that was once given to me by a witch friend. I know how to activate it, but it's a onetime use so we have to be out of this forest after tonight'' he explained slowly as he looked over his shoulder to make sure that Kathrina and the spare horses were following.

''What's next? You'll conjure a dragon just like the one that attacked the city?'' he grumbled.

Elijah smirked as if to say, 'maybe', but then he faced forward and took a deep breath, ''There's a large pack of Black-Dog's up ahead, we'll need their decaying corpses to create the ward''

Logan came to a halt, ''What? Why didn't you tell us that back there?!'' he exclaimed as he quickly grabbed his swords from his back and held them in his hands, ready.

''It wasn't necessary until now'' he said plainly, waiting for him to start moving again.

He gently kicked the horse and it started moving again.

''How long until we reach them?'' Kathrina asked.

''Fifteen minutes'' he replied.

Logan frowned doubtfully, ''There's no way you can see that far ahead of us, even with those eyes of yours'' he mumbled.

They continued to walk on and it seemed that Elijah had ignored Logan’s comment. But Logan had no idea about the extent of Elijah's eyes. He had no idea what they were capable of and what he had already seen and been told was a mere fraction of their capabilities. He wanted to know more. He had never seen or heard of anything like them before. But if he were to ask, would either of them tell him? Kathrina had said that she'd tell him a few things, but that wasn't going to be enough. Why do they look like they do? Why are they so brightly colored? Did they drain his magic? But most of all, where and how did he get them?

He glanced at him, glaring. ‘This guy...’ He thought, ‘Why did someone like him just appear out of nowhere? Where does someone like him even come from?’

So many questions. But would there ever be a right time to ask them? He grunted in frustration and continued to follow. He had to concentrate; after all, they were about to fight a pack of Black-Dogs. An earlier warning would have been appreciated, but it’s better to be told later rather than to not be told at all, right? The fact that Elijah seemed to keep information hidden until someone asks annoyed him; it made him furious! He gripped his swords tightly, glaring at his back as he continued to lead the way.

Just then, he slowed and stopped. Reaching into one of the saddle bags, he gripped something and carefully pulled it out. He turned around and held it in his palm, showing Logan and Kathrina as they wondered over and stared down at it curiously. It was small and round; it actually looked similar to the talisman that Tsunami carried around on his holster. There were strange words carved into it in a language Logan didn't recognize. There was also a five-point star carved into it with a smaller four-point star in its center. Around that star there were more strange words. Elijah then closed his hand and held it tightly.

''It is dark magic, so it involves sacrifice'' he said as they started to walk again.

Sacrifice? Logan thought to himself. That talisman looked a lot like the one Tsunami had to seal Alpha. He then realized - The last time he summoned that demon, what kind of sacrifice did he make? No one died - Well, not that he knew of. He never really paid much attention before but now it seemed slightly important. But then, he remembered. Blood. Tsunami would cut his own hand and use blood. He looked up at Elijah-

''That won't work'' he suddenly said.

Logan grunted angrily. He didn't even have to be looking at him to read his thoughts, ''Why?'' he grumbled, feeling slightly violated.

''Well, summoning a demon takes but seconds. A ward lasts a certain time so it needs as much blood to last as long as you require''

''Like a fire'' Kathrina added, ''It only lasts as long as there is wood for it to burn''

Now he was beginning to understand, ''So the Black-dogs will act as wood for the fire''

''Mhmm'' Elijah mumbled, agreeing, seeming deep in thought.

He took his mind off the ward for a moment. His eyes dulled and returned to normal as he thought to himself. A demon; this intrigued him very much. And even more surprisingly, it was Tsunami who apparently owned it. Somehow, that man had sealed a demon into a talisman... As much as he hated it, he was beginning to question his thoughts on Tsunami. Not just anyone can do something like that. And this demons name was... Alpha? Why would he bother to know the things name? He smirked, knowing that he could find out when they reached the city tomorrow.

As they continued, Kathrina began to feel strange. A rumbling feeling had suddenly fired up in her stomach. She frowned, confused as she tried to understand it. But she didn't. As if trying to be discreet, she reached over and grabbed Logan's arm, pulling him back. He stared at her strangely as she wrapped her arm around her stomach.

''What's wrong with me?'' she asked, seeming slightly distressed.

He frowned harder, clueless.

But then, the sound came again as she scrunched up her face in revolt and stared up at him.

He stared back down at her, wiping the frown from his face and replacing it with a slightly humored look, ''You're hungry'' he laughed quietly.

She glared at him strangely, loosening her grip on his arm.

''When was the last time you ate something?'' he mumbled.

''Umm... Like, human food?''

He frowned again, ''Uhh... Yeah, what else?''

She opened her mouth to speak-

''-Actually, don't answer that. I don't need to know what you Warlocks eat-''

''Us'' Elijah called, ''are you forgetting you're now one of us?''

Logan turned and glared at him as he glared back over his shoulder at them-

''Kathrina is not fully Warlock. Although she may seem so, she does not feed like we do'' he said as he turned and faced forward again, his eye's lighting green and purple as he stared deeply into the woods ahead.

''I don't have too'' she corrected, ''I can choose''

Logan's face lit up with hope, ''does that mean that I-''

''No'' Elijah called, making all of Logan's hope drown away, ''you and I are complete Warlocks''

He waited, expecting him to elaborate, but he didn't. There he was again, keeping facts to himself until asked-

''So, what do you... We... Feed on?'' he asked slowly.

''You do not know?''

''Obviously not or I wouldn't have strained myself to ask'' he growled as he frowned angrily.

Elijah smirked, but didn't answer.

Then, Kathrina caught up and rode beside Logan. She looked over at him with what looked like a slightly disgusted look on her pale face.

''Warlocks feed on the energy of other living things. It's kind of like how vampires drink blood, except we extract the energy or magic from another living thing. You can also, like a vampire, drink blood. It's more effective and sates your hunger for longer, but too much can send you into a frenzy. It drives you insane and can make you lose yourself, becoming consumed with hunger and anger. That's what most lower-class Warlocks are. Those who have lost their true selves and just want to kill and destroy''

Logan widened his eyes in shock. Neither he nor anyone else back at the city knew this. Not even Tsunami. At least two of the biggest mysteries about Warlocks had just been cleared up right before him. It made him wonder, how much was there left that they didn't know and these two knew? But that must be why they take people; not only to turn them into Warlocks but to also feed. But, why can't they just eat normal food?

Elijah slowly looked over his shoulder as Logan glared back. It seemed that this time, he was waiting for his approval to answer. He waited.

''A Warlock's magic is made up of a lot of different energies and forces. All a Warlock's body focuses on is maintaining its magic which in turn provides strength, movement and life as a whole'' Kathrina began, ''to keep that energy strong within them, they must feed it with more energy and life. However, the energy must be pure. So, it has to be human, Seer or even Mage, Witch or Wizard''

''But, why just them?''

''Other energies, like Vampire or Werewolf are a mix of two or more different energies or forces. If anything, other than a single energy is consumed, it can confuse, corrupt and decay the magic within a Warlock. Elijah told me not too long ago that feeding on other energies can turn Warlocks into abominations or even kill them''

''Aren't Warlock's already abominations?'' he mumbled.

''Well-''

''That was a rhetorical question'' he snapped angrily, glaring at Elijah as he went back to facing the front.

But just then, all of a sudden, he came to a halt. What looked like a concerned look had appeared on his face as he turned around and stared into the trees behind them. Logan slowly looked in the same direction and so did Kathrina, but they couldn't see anything. However, seeing such a look on Elijah's face disturbed Logan a lot. Obviously, he had sensed something behind them, but what could it be?

Logan turned around and looked over at him, waiting for some kind of explanation or belayed warning. But he sat there on his horse, endlessly staring into the distance. Something wasn't right, he could feel it. An uneasy feeling of uncertainty and danger began to linger in the air like a thick fog, getting thicker and thicker every second they stood there.

Suddenly, Elijah grunted quietly, still staring into the trees. He seemed to be struggling-

''Elijah?'' Kathrina asked as she stared back at him.

But he didn't answer her which made things seem even more off. He continued to stare, almost as if he couldn't stop himself. He grunted again and it looked as if he was trying to look away, but he couldn't. Why?

Kathrina moved over to him and placed her hand on his shoulder, gently shaking him. A pained look appeared on his face, grunting again. But this time, it sounded like he was mumbling, trying to speak.

He watched them, waiting for Elijah to make sense. But this was very out of his jerky character. Logan slowly moved over to them, glaring at him. He froze. Elijah was trembling, sweating slightly. Just then, as he stared at his glowing eyes-

''Elijah?!'' Kathrina called as she shook him again.

Logan stared as his eyes started to bleed, blood seeping down his face and onto his chin, dripping onto the horse’s mane.

''Something's coming'' she said as she moved in front of Elijah defensively.

''What's going on with him?''

''There's no time to-''

Just then, a huge gust of wind erupted from the trees as hundreds of panicked birds scattered, screeching and cawing in what sounded like fear. The wind made Kathrina and Logan's hair fly around violently as they covered their eyes, leaves and twigs rushing towards them like a tsunami.

''They're here'' she said quietly as she climbed off the horse and wielded her sword, waiting.

''Who are here?!'' Logan asked angrily as he also got off his horse and stood ready, holding his swords.

She looked over her shoulder back at Elijah. He hadn't moved. He couldn't. She had never seen him like this before, but she knew that they had to protect him. Maybe after he would recover. She was unsure, but they had to try. Breathing deeply, she faced forward again, waiting. Whatever was heading their way was getting closer, she could hear their faint hurried footsteps crushing the leaves beneath them.

''Get ready'' she instructed.

Logan didn't know what to expect. It could be anything from wolves to trolls out here in this forest. But whatever it was, he knew he could take it on. But then again, what kind of creature could stop Elijah like that? It made him feel uneasy, there was no doubt that they were dealing with some kind of magic. But what kind exactly? Mage? Seer? Witch? Warlock? He breathed deeply, gripping his swords tightly, waiting-

Suddenly, from what seemed like out of nowhere, a huge bright light exploded in front of them. It was so bright it blinded them, making them lose their balance and stumble back. Almost instantly after, several fireballs came flying towards them - Kathrina jumped in front of Logan and held her hand out quickly as it started to glow a bright golden color. She grunted slightly, pushing her hand forward; as she did, the fireballs slowed until they were hovering just inches away from her face. She then slowly closed her hand, the fireballs crumbled and fizzed away as she did.

She then put her hand down and held her sword in front of her again, pointing it into the trees. Logan trembled slightly, slowly looking down at his own hands. Was he capable of such things? If he was, he could be of so much more use. But he still didn't know what was attacking them. He looked over his shoulder back at Elijah in hope that he had broken free from whatever was gripping him in such a state, but he hadn't. He still remained sitting on his horse, frozen and his eyes still weeping blood. He was useless right now. He had only managed to move one of his hands half way up his face in an attempt to cover his eyes, but instead he was only covering his mouth and nose. So, it looked like it was down to him and Kathrina.

Then, he turned away and stared into the trees. He tried to focus and as he did, he realized he could hear approaching footsteps. But they weren't coming from the direction they were facing-

''Behind us!'' Logan yelled as he swiftly turned around-

From the trees just behind Elijah, a small group of six people slowed and stood there, glaring at them as Kathrina pulled on Elijah's horse, moving him away from the danger. As the horse rushed to join the others that were a fair distance away, all of them watched and stared at each other intensely. Kathrina gripped her sword tighter, angered.

''Warlocks'' she mumbled.

Now Logan understood.

''Where is Makiere?!'' she demanded, an anger in her voice Logan had never heard before.

But they said nothing. Instead, four of them stepped forward, pulling swords from inside their long robes. Their faces were hidden behind masks made of human-skulls, but somehow, Logan could tell that they were grinning. Smirking. Laughing. Did they think that just because Elijah was useless that they were going to defeat him and Kathrina so easily?

''Cocky bastards'' he growled quietly as he felt the same burning rage firing up inside him he had felt when he was told that he was now a Warlock.

He grunted, furious. There was no way he was going to stand here and let them think that. All of their strength did not rely on one man. Never. Logan is Arikarin. Not Warlock. And Arikarin do NOT back down!

''I'LL KILL ALL OF YOU!!!'' he screamed as he burst into a speed he never knew he had.

Before the Warlock's or even Kathrina could react, he gripped his swords, raced towards the four, leaped into the air, so high he felt like he had wings - He twisted his body as he fell, holding his blades to his sides. He yelled in anger as his swords collided with two of the Warlocks, their blades slicing right through them. The other two dived to each side to avoid his attack. Quickly, he stood up and twisted his sword around, spraying the Warlock's blood onto the grass. Then, he stabbed his swords into each of the Warlock's chests, killing them.

He looked over his shoulder back at Kathrina. She stared back. He seemed to be smiling. But before she could say anything, he rushed back to her side and stood beside her. The other four Warlocks watched as the bodies of the two Logan had just slain crumbled and cracked into stone.

The other two that had dived away moved over to confront them both.

''My turn'' she growled as she began to slowly approach them.

Logan watched. A golden aura had suddenly started to twist around her body as she moved towards them. But from what he could see, she wasn't focusing on them. Instead, she was glaring at the two who had stayed back.

Just then, the two who had survived Logan's attack held out their hands as they started to glow, but Kathrina held one of her hands above her head and twisted it slightly. Almost instantly, the Warlocks froze -

CRACK!!!

The two yelled in agony as they dropped to their knees, gripping their legs. Suddenly, blood began to ooze from their robes, soaking into the ground - Did she break their legs? Just like that? Logan wasn't sure but he didn't care. He walked over to them and glared down at them as Kathrina continued to move towards the other two. One of them struggled, but glared up at him.

''You... Disgust me'' Logan grumbled as he held up his sword and forced it through the Warlock's chest.

As his body crumbled, the other one rolled over onto his stomach and began to drag himself away. Logan grinned as he slowly followed him like a predator toying with its prey. He watched. Listened. A faint crackling sound was coming from the Warlock as he dragged himself. It sounded like the leaves and twigs breaking beneath him. But was it? He stopped -

''HUH!?'' he exclaimed as the Warlock suddenly jumped up, throwing his fist in Logan's face.

He stumbled back, ''Using the ground to muffle the sound of your legs healing?'' he said as he wiped blood from his nose, ''Smart''

The Warlock then wielded his sword and tried to swing at him, but Logan dodged to his left and swung one of his swords towards the Warlock. But he was fast, he pulled his sword back and clashed it with Logan's, blocking his attack. But just a second after, Logan swung his other sword around and slashed the Warlock in half. He violently yanked his sword from its body as it turned to stone.

As he wiped the blood from his blades he turned around and looked for Kathrina - She had her sword through one of the Warlock's chests and was holding the other by his throat against a tree, glaring into his eyes.

''Tell. Me'' she growled angrily.

He choked, ''You... You're going to die... Bitch'' he laughed.

She angered even more, twisting her sword and pulling it from the impaled Warlock. His body fell and crumbled to stone as it hit the ground. Then, she slid her sword back into its holster and grabbed hold of the Warlocks mask, ripping it from his face. She crushed it in her hand as she glared into the Warlocks yellow eyes. He glared back, panic visible in their evil emptiness.

Logan stared at his cold face. His hair was a dull light brown and shoulder length, messy and dirty. His dark grey robes were torn and just as dirty as his hair.

''Tell me where he is or you'll end up like the others''

He stared right into her dark green eyes, ''I'll end up like them anyway'' he smiled.

But Kathrina and Logan were too distracted by him to realize that someone was approaching Elijah.

A tall, cloaked man walked out of the cover of the trees and slowly walked up to him as he remained there, immobilized. His black cloak had seemed to keep him hidden in the darkness. But now that they were distracted, he revealed himself. He wore black Warlock robes, much like the ones Elijah had been wearing earlier before he changed. The man also had shoulder armor and gauntlets around his wrists. Unlike the others, he wasn't wearing a mask.

''Elijah'' he said pleasantly as he pulled down his hood and stared up at him.

He grunted, slowly moving his eyes so that he could see who was talking to him.

He stared down at him. His hair was long, maybe a bit shorter than Logan's and it was ashen white, quite like his own. He knew this man. His eye's looked exactly like his, except they were colored a bright blue with dark red behind the blue stars. They glowed brightly. But he sighed and placed his hand on Elijah's horse.

''The Endless Gaze'' he said as he walked around the horse, circling Elijah, ''you always fell for that one''

Elijah angered, trying to talk as he trembled, slowly moving his hand away from his face.

''It's a shame, really. You see, Gahi wants you dead now, too'' he chuckled, ''to think that you were one of our strongest, now look at you... You fell for the very counter you mastered so easily. Of course, there's a few other ways to counter your Jikato, but you know me... I'm all about irony''

''Y... You-''

''What was that?'' he asked harshly.

''You're... S... Still... A... W... Weak... Coward'' he grunted, struggling.

He stopped in his tracks and glared up at him evilly. Elijah slowly stared back. A burning hatred and tension was building up around them as they continued to glare at each other, their eyes glowing brightly. Obviously, they knew each other quite well. Elijah had lost his usual smirk and cocky attitude, frowning more seriously as he began to realize he could move more and more as they both remained there, waiting. But what were they waiting for?

But then, the long white-haired man breathed deeply and began to circle him again, ''I don't have long; not only is the paralysis wearing off a lot quicker than I had anticipated, but it seems that the Warlocks I was sent with can't even handle two of their own''

''Why are you here, Makiere?'' Elijah asked as he turned his head, following him with his eyes as he walked around.

''I was sent to retrieve Kathrina and you, Gahi doesn't care for the Samurai''

''Arikarin!'' he snapped as he tried to move to get off of the horse, but he still couldn't move any other part of his body.

''Whatever. I don't care. Anyway, you can come quietly and no one gets hurt, or you can struggle and everyone will get hurt - including me, 'cause I kinda like you Elijah'' he smiled, mocking him.

He frowned angrily. He had always known Makiere to be like this. Arrogant. And a fool. As he sat there, waiting, feeling had started to come back into his body. Without Makiere noticing, he slightly moved his legs. He was free. But now all he had to do was wait for the right moment to attack. This wasn't just any opponent he was going to face. But what were Kathrina and Logan doing? If either of them were to get into this fight, they could be hurt or even killed. He had to tell them.

He grunted painfully, pretending to be in agony as he leaned over and put his hands over his bloody face. Makiere snickered as he watched.

Logan stared at Kathrina as she tightened her grip on the Warlocks throat. He choked and struggled to breathe, his face turning red.

''You... You're too late'' it laughed.

''You useless shit!'' she yelled as she violently pulled her hand away.

He fell to the ground, but he didn't try to run. Instead, he stared up at her as she glared back down at him.

''Trai-''

SMASH!!!

She forced her sword into his chest, watching as the amused smile left his crumbling face.

''Logan'' came Elijah's voice.

Logan stumbled back in confusion, looking around frantically-

''I'm using telepathy. Listen, neither you nor Kathrina can get involved in the fight I'm about to have - Keep her and yourself back''

''But you're injured - Wait, what fight?!''

Kathrina sharply turned around and looked at Logan strangely as he stood there, seeming to be speaking to himself.

''A Prince Warlock''

''Are you serious!? You can't possibly-''

''This one is different. However, if he changes, that's when you back me up''

''What do you mean?! Elijah?!''

But he was gone-

''What do you mean, Elijah?'' Kathrina as ked as she grabbed Logan's arm and glared up at him.

''He told me that we need to stay back, but back him up if he changes'' he said slowly.

''If who changes?''

''He said he's about to face a Prince Warlock''

As Logan spoke those words, the anger seemed to leave Kathrina's face like she had realized something terrible. And she had. What looked like worry had replaced her fury. She put her sword back in its holster and began to head in Elijah's direction-

''Kathrina, wait!'' Logan insisted as he grabbed her arm, pulling her back.

She looked back at him harshly.

''Maybe it's best if we do what he said''

''Oh what, you're scared now?'' she hissed as she snatched her arm back.

''No... But that's a Prince. Maybe we should let another Prince deal with him?''

''That Prince is most likely Makiere and if he does change, Elijah is going to need us'' she said as she started to storm off again-

''Okay, okay, wait just a second'' Logan said as he grabbed her again.

She wacked his hand off her arm, ''What?!''

''Just who in the hell is this Makiere guy you keep going on about?''

Impatient and aggravated, she brushed her sleeve, smoothing out the creases where Logan had grabbed her, ''Makiere is Gahi's strongest Prince''

''What - Stronger that Elijah?'' he asked, slightly intimidated.

''Yeah, you could say that''

''But... How?''

She took a deep breath and stared him straight in the eye - ''Makiere is what we call a Shifter''

''What's a shifter?''

But Kathrina didn't answer. She had turned around and was staring into the dark trees. She had caught a glimpse of the horses and Elijah. She quickly grabbed hold of Logan's arm and pulled him down. They both stayed crouched, hidden, watching as Makiere became visible, still circling Elijah.

''So'' he said as he stopped and glared up at him, ''what's it gonna be, Elijah?''

Just then, in the blink of an eye, Elijah jumped off the horse, reached out and grabbed Makiere's throat, pinning him against a tree - ''Don't you ever dare to underestimate me again!'' he growled.

The look on Makiere's face was pure terror. It had happened so fast, he was still trying to figure out what had happened. His delayed reaction was a simple gasp and petrified look on his face as he stared at Elijah who was staring back evilly, his green and purple eyes glowing blindingly bright. The blood has stopped weeping from his eyes and had started to dry, crumbling on his face as he spoke.

''What the fuck is wrong with you?!'' Elijah growled quietly.

But Makiere stared back. Either he didn't understand what Elijah was talking about, or he did but was trying to act like he didn't. He grabbed hold of Elijah's arm with one of his own, trying to pull him off his throat, but he tightened his grip-

''Is this really what it's come to?''

''What do you mean?'' Makiere asked slowly and mockingly, ''it has always been like this''

He tightened his grip even more, ''Don't make me kill you''

He choked and laughed, ''I wouldn't be the first to-''

''SHUT UP!!!'' Elijah suddenly yelled, so loud it frightened Kathrina and Logan who were still hiding.

Makiere backed down slightly, losing the mocking grin as uncertainty flooded both his eyes and head. Just then, his blue and red eyes began to get dimmer, fading back to a light blue color. His pupils were just like a Warlocks. He glared at Elijah, watching as his eyes also faded back to their normal color and appearance.

''I guess... Everyone... Gets hurt'' he growled as he grabbed Elijah's arm with both of his hands.

Elijah stared down at his arm and then realized what was about to happen - He struggled, trying to pull away, but Makiere seemed to be a lot stronger.

He gripped Elijah's arm, tighter and tighter as he pushed himself off the tree and managed to force him back slightly, still holding his arm. Then, he stopped and glared into Elijah's eyes as an evil grin appeared on his face -

CRACK!!!

Elijah yelled out in agony, so loud that several birds burst out of the trees in shock - The horses also scattered as Makiere twisted on his now broken arm. He laughed manically as he watched Elijah suffer, twisting his arm left and right, preventing it from healing. He yelled again as blood began to spill from his sleeve, falling to his knees, trying to pull away from him.

''ELIJAH!!!'' Kathrina yelled as she and Logan burst out of the trees, headed straight for Makiere.

Spotting them, Makiere let go of Elijah's arm and backed off a small distance away.

Elijah gripped his arm with his other hand, trying to hide his pain. Kathrina crouched down beside him and grabbed his injured arm. He groaned reluctantly, but she didn't care. She pushed his hand off his arm and pulled up his sleeve - They both stared at it.

Logan looked revolted and turned his attention to Makiere who was still watching from a distance. They glared at each other. But neither of them moved.

Kathrina looked down at Elijah's arm. There was a lot of blood; but she frowned in discomfort when she noticed that his wrist had been snapped in two. The bone was sticking out of a large, deep cut.

''I'm gonna have to twist it back-''

''-Just... Do it'' Elijah grumbled as he looked away, also turning his attention to Makiere.

Without hesitation, she gripped his arm with both of her hands, took a deep breath and -

CRACK!!!

Elijah yelled again, but not so loud this time. He sharply turned his head and stared down at his arm, watching as the wound slowly healed.

They both climbed to their feet, joining Logan who was glaring at Makiere, both his swords in his hands.

''Three on one?'' Makiere called, ''that's hardly fair''

''You should have run away the moment we cut down your-''

''I meant for you'' he snarled, silencing Logan.

''Don't underestimate him, Arikarin. I'm sure Kathrina told you what he is'' Elijah said quietly as he gripped his sword's hilt as it sat in its scabbard.

''She said something about him being a Shifter, whatever that is'' he replied.

He pulled his sword from the scabbard, holding it in front of him, pointing it at Makiere, ''he's dangerous''

Logan glanced at Elijah's blade, still amazed by its length and how Elijah could wield it with such ease.

''But he most likely won't shift here, it's too enclosed and-'' he paused.

They all stared.

A strange white fog began to surround Makiere, twisting around him. As it twisted faster and faster, he grinned and wrapped his arms around his chest. Suddenly, a huge bright flash of light and strong gust of wind exploded from him and the fog erupted, flooding the ground and quickly vanishing. They all covered their faces with their arms as the wind threw leaves, twigs and even small stones at them.

Suddenly, a low growl echoed around them. They all moved their arms and glared at what stood in front of them in Makiere's place-

''Is that - A DRAGON?!'' Logan yelled, both confused and afraid.

It was indeed a dragon. Now standing where Makiere once was a tall, white and grey dragon - It was only a bit taller than Makiere, but it was covered in sharp razor like spikes and claws. It grinned mockingly and began to widen its jaw...

''GET DOWN!!!'' Elijah yelled as he held his blade in front of him as if to shield himself-

Suddenly, a huge explosion of fire burst towards him and crashed into his sword as he stood there. Logan watched from behind him as the fire collided with his sword. It almost looked like the sword was absorbing the fire, but it was getting more and more intense by the second - Elijah struggled, still standing his ground as the fire began to burst out and started curving around the sword, engulfing him in the flames-

''Elijah!'' Kathrina yelled as she went to run to him, but Logan grabbed her arm-

''Look'' he said, pointing at him.

Although barely visible, Logan noticed that the fire was curving around the blade, but was not hitting Elijah. But just then, he grunted and dropped to one of his knees. It was clear that he wasn't going to be able to keep this up for long-

''We have to do something while he has it distracted'' Logan said quietly as he pulled Kathrina away, hoping that Makiere hadn't noticed them.

She was slightly surprised. She had expected Logan to freeze in fear and confusion, but instead he was handling the situation like any other. Quickly, she followed him as he began to move through the cover of the trees and bushes, getting close to the dragon. As they moved, they both kept an eye on it and also stopped to look back and see if Elijah was still deflecting the flames.

A dragon, Logan thought as he and Kathrina hid behind a tree just a few meters from it. Was it possible that Makiere had just transformed into a dragon? He wasn't completely positive, but now he wouldn't expect any less from a Warlock. After meeting Elijah, he knew that there was so much that he didn't know about them. But what he did know was that every Warlock has some kind of weakness. So what was Makiere's?

''You know this guy, right?'' he whispered.

Kathrina looked at him, ''Yes. He's much like Elijah''

''In what sense?''

''Many. He has the same type of visual power like he does and he's also a prince''

''Shit'' Logan mumbled as he glared over at Elijah.

He was now down on both of his knees. He had stabbed his sword into the ground to help him keep hold of it, but he was just seconds away from collapsing.

Kathrina had also noticed Elijah's state. She hadn't taken her eyes off of him. They had to do something soon-

''He's a shifter'' she said as she turned her attention to Makiere who was firing a constant stream of explosive flames towards Elijah without pausing.

''So, what's a shifters weakness?''

''Their back. Just below their neck. If you impale him there, he'll shift back to himself and that's when I'll go for the killing blow'' she instructed as she pulled her sword from its holster.

Logan nodded, gripping both of his blades. The back... That would mean he'd have to attack from above... He scoffed quietly. Time to put his technique to use, he thought as he stood up, his back against the tree. He breathed deeply and quickly rushed into the trees behind Makiere, so quietly that even Kathrina didn't notice until he was nowhere to be seen.

But just then, Elijah yelled loudly, his hands slowly losing hold of his swords hilt. He began to slip back as the flames rushed towards him. He tried to tighten his grip on his sword, but it was too late - The sword flew out of the ground and spun through the air, disappearing into the trees as the huge stream of fire smashed into him, also sending him into the trees. As he flew back, he crashed into a tree and fell to the ground. But for some reason, the flames had not caught him on fire.

Makiere snapped his jaws shut triumphantly and turned around, searching the trees for Kathrina and Logan. He growled lowly as he breathed, scanning everything around him with his cold, piercing blue eyes.

Just a small distance from him, Kathrina had seen what happened to Elijah. Angered, she was trying to keep herself from forgetting the plan and attacking Makiere alone. She waited for Logan, but was starting to get impatient as she stared into the trees where Elijah was thrown, hoping that he'd recover and come to help. But it looked like that wasn't going to happen. Logan was taking his time too, had something happened to him?

She breathed deeply. There was another option. She could fight Makiere while Elijah recovered and hopefully weaken him or even defeat him. It was a long shot, but she had to do something otherwise she'd probably end up like Elijah very soon. She went to slip her sword back into its holster, but then she paused -

Logan suddenly appeared out of the darkness, leaping into the air-

He stared down at the back of the dragon, breathing slowly as he flew through the air. Everything seemed to slow down as he breathed, concentrating - He examined the dragons back - There! On its back just below its neck was what looked like a ward, glowing a dark grey color. He exhaled and spun around, aiming for the ward-

Kathrina burst out of her hiding place, letting Makiere notice her to distract him from Logan - She raced towards him, pointing her sword forward, aiming for his neck-

''HAA!!'' Logan yelled as he twisted around, his blades slicing through the dragon’s thick flesh-

The dragon roared loudly, stumbling as it tried to turn around and grab hold of Logan in its jaws, but missed as Logan jumped back. As blood splattered from the cut, the white fog began to appear and twist around the dragon as it tried to back away, watching as Kathrina raced towards it, clear panic in its shocked eyes-

The fog exploded and Makiere fell from it, now running. But she wasn't going to let him get away - Kathrina chased him, throwing her sword back into its holster. Now - She came to a halt and held out her hand, a furious look on her face as a golden aura surrounded her hand - Makiere was stopped in his tracks-

''You're not going anywhere you coward!'' she yelled as the golden aura glowed brightly, wrapping around her entire body.

This was Logan's - He raced towards Makiere, gripping both of his swords tightly. He leaped into the air and aimed down at Makiere - But suddenly, the white fog exploded from where he stood again, sending Logan flying back towards Kathrina.

She quickly moved out of the way, the gold aura disappearing. Logan crashed to the ground as the fog cleared, revealing Makiere in his dragon form again. But this time, he turned around and stretched out a huge pair of wings on his back and leaped into the air, smashing through the tree tops and racing away into the sky.

Kathrina watched in anger as he flew away. Logan slowly climbed to his feet, one of his own swords stuck through his right leg which was bleeding violently. He grunted loudly as he pulled it out, gripping the wound with his hand. His other sword was sticking out of the ground beside him, covered in Makiere's blood. He glared at it -

''What the hell happened?!'' he growled as he put his swords back into their holsters on his back, turning to Kathrina who was still glaring up at the sky through the gap Makiere had made.

She growled quietly and glared at Logan, ''you were too slow''

''ME!!!???'' he yelled angrily, ''Why is this suddenly my fault!? Where was smart ass Elijah!?'' he growled.

Kathrina then noticed that Elijah still hadn't joined them. Completely ignoring Logan, she turned around and headed towards the trees where Elijah had been thrown. He growled angrily, but followed. They followed the path of burnt grass and leaves on the ground until the came to a tree which was shattered and covered in blood. But Elijah was not there.

''Elijah!?'' Kathrina called as she looked around.

She seemed to be panicking, looking around frantically. Logan had also started to look around more seriously. But just then, the sound of approaching footsteps echoed behind them... They both turned around and waited.

''So, he ran again huh?'' Elijah mumbled as he strolled out of the trees carrying his sword over one shoulder, an aggravated look on his bloody face.

Kathrina sighed in relief, but Logan frowned angrily-

''Where were you!? We would have had him if you-''

''Shh'' Elijah snapped rudely as he pushed past him and put his hand on Kathrina's shoulder, staring down at her, ''are you okay?'' he asked quietly.

She nodded, ''what about you?''

''I'm fine'' he lied, ''I'll recover, I just need to sit down'' he said as he slumped back against a tree and slowly fell down, sitting awkwardly, holding his sword beside him.

Logan could see that he was lying. He looked awful. His face was covered in blood and it looked like his eyes were still weeping blood, but he acted as if he was fine. How could he be? What exactly had happened to him to cause such a reaction? He also slowly sat down, staring at Elijah from the corner of his eyes.

Elijah was exhausted. His eyes were weary and dull. He felt like he hadn't slept in ages, but then again, he hadn't. A painful stinging was lingering in his eyes and wrist. His body was trying to heal, but it seemed to be struggling. He sighed deeply and slowly slipped his sword back into its holster, leaning back and trying to relax. But he wasn't just physically exhausted. Being so easily beaten by Makiere was tormenting him. How could he protect Kathrina if he couldn't even defeat someone like Makiere? There were far more dangerous people out there than Makiere. He gazed up at her as she whistled and called the horses over. He had to be stronger. He had to do everything he could to make sure that he wouldn't be beaten again.

Then, he turned his attention to Logan who was now clearly staring straight at him. He didn't seem to care that he'd noticed. He stared back, but he was even too exhausted to glare his usual evil, intimidating stare. Instead, he sighed, ''What now?''

But Logan didn't say anything. He just stared, examining the state he was in. He was engulfed in fire not too long ago, so how come his clothes weren't burnt? Then, he stared right into his eyes-

''What happened to you?'' he asked, sounding concerned.

Elijah scoffed and stared up at the trees, ''I might be mistaken, but it seems that you're worried about me. Or are you just worried for yourself?''

''No, I'm just curious as to how you were put down so easily''

Elijah angered, but exhaled loudly, ''if I weren't so exhausted, I'd kick your ass''

Logan grinned mockingly, ''maybe I should kick yours right now, make us even for earlier''

He looked over at him mockingly, ''you'd really want to fight me like this?''

Logan paused and stared at him. Elijah looked like he was going to pass out any minute. The blood on his face added to his weakened look. He was right. Even though Logan wanted a rematch that ended in victory for himself, there was no way he could bring himself to fight someone as wounded and exhausted as Elijah was right now.

''No, I have honor unlike some others''

''Hmph'' Elijah mumbled as he went back to staring up at the sky, ''I'd still beat you even in my current state''

''Don't push it, Warlock'' he growled.

Elijah scoffed again, but then he fell silent.

Logan quickly turned his head and looked over at him - He was still, lifeless, was he-

''I'm not dead, you idiot'' he mumbled.

''Then what are you?'' he asked sarcastically.

''I'm relaxing. I'll heal faster if I do''

''You know, maybe you should rest. You look like you haven't slept in days'' he grumbled.

''No'' he said plainly.

Kathrina slowly walked over to them with the horses behind her. She looked down at Elijah as he opened his eyes and stared up at her.

''Logan's right'' she said as she also sat down, ''you need to rest Elijah''

He sighed, ''Okay''

 

 



© Copyright 2018 Kathrina Csernis. All rights reserved.

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