Fade to White: Descending into Darkness

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Booksie Classic

Chapter 12 (v.1) - The Swordman's Prize

Submitted: July 20, 2018

Reads: 96

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Submitted: July 20, 2018

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Chapter 12: The Swordsman’s Prize

“Hmm? The crowd seems to have stopped.” Maria said as she sat with the others. She uncrossed her legs, stood up from her seat and walked toward the edge of the balcony. She leaned on the wooden railing and stared thoughtfully in the distance. “Maria?” Rose asked, “What’s the matter?” Maria shook her head a bit and replied, “Nothing, it’s just that it’s suddenly become silent.”

“Your name is Kuro?” Shirou asked the new male as he stood up, helping Lycana to her feet before dusting off his clothes. “That is my name, yes. What, were you expecting something else?” Kuro replied, chuckling a bit as he gave his answer. “Oh.” He said, as if he remembered something important, “You two never gave me your names.” Shirou and Lycana looked at each other for a moment before nodding. Lycana looked at Kuro and said, “My name is Lycana Mondlicht.”, and Shirou spoke as well, “And I’m Shirou Caliburn. Nice to meet you Kuro.” Introductions were cut short when footsteps were heard coming down the path to their location. A woman’s voice called out, “Kuro? Where did you go?!” As she came into view, she looked around the area until she saw the group, or well the two. Only Shirou and Lycana remained of the previous three.

The white-haired female sighed and caught her breath, breathlessly saying, “Damn. I thought I sensed him down here. Where the hell did he go!” As she finished her little rant, she threw her hands in the air in outrage. Unbeknownst to her, someone slowly walked behind her. As the person came closer, it was revealed to be Kuro, who put his hands over her eyes and whispered, “Hey.”

Big mistake.

The female screamed and sent an elbow right into the left ribcage of Kuro, who fell on the floor and doubled over in pain. She turned around and looked at the wounded Kuro, “Oh my god! I’m so sorry!” Kuro groaned as he held his side, “Dear god, why do you have such a powerful elbow?!” She helped him up and checked him for any other injuries. When next to Kuro you could see the height difference between the two, as Kuro stood easily a few inches taller than her. Once she finished checking him for any obvious injuries she pulled him into a tight hug, which he returns with a light smile.

They hugged for a few moments before Shirou cleared his throat behind him and the two scrambled out of the hug, holding their hands behind their backs as they stood in Shirou’s direction. “...Anyways” Shirou said as he walked closer, “Who’s she?” Kuro’s face lit up with a look that said “Ah, yes” and said, “This is Cruseia, my wife.” As he said this, she smiled and waved at the two. The two reintroduced themselves to Cruseia, who responded in kind.

Her name was Cruseia Valerios, apparently, and Kuro had taken on her last name. The woman herself was shorter than her husband, but around an inch taller than Lycana. Her long hair was as white as snow and her skin was rather pale, but not a sickly white color. Her eyes were like Shirou’s, being blue, but they had a quality that one could mistake the color for that of a sapphire’s. She did have one feature that Shirou recognized, the pointed ears of an elf. As if she could read Shirou’s mind a she saw them, she said, “Oh, you’re probably wondering about my ears… I’m elven, as you could see. A Northern Elf, to be exact, all of us have white hair too.”

Kuro had walked away from the group while they told each other about themselves and stopped at the dead body of the boar. He drew the sword sheathed at his side and, with one swift slice, relieved the dead boar of its tusks. After this was done, he sheathed his sword and held each tusk in either arm, walking back with the group as they continued their return to the City Square.

“The crowds calmed down and I was soon about to wonder if the boar killed everyone this time.” Erfrierung chuckled as he watched Shirou, Kuro, Lycana and Cruseia return to the City Square before continuing, “...Kidding, of course.” Erfrierung left the balcony, followed by the three who shared his company, to meet the man who killed the boar. “As promised, the victor of the Hunt gets his weight in gold, as well as a special item from my vault.” Kuro hands Erfrierung the tusks and says, “You can keep the gold, all I came for was this ‘item’ you speak of.” Erfrierung smiled as he rose his left hand and slid a silver ring off his middle finger, a purple gemstone anchored inside. “This,” He said, handing it to Kuro, “Is a Magical Arm, one of the Seven Adornments of the Ruler. The Ring of Absolute Absorption, it's called. Belonged to the ancient King of Uruk, the first demigod; Gilgamesh.” Kuro nodded and accepted the ring, putting it on his right middle finger. “I thank you for this gift, sire.” He said as he gracefully bowed to Erfrierung.

As the sun fell into the horizon, after the ring was awarded to Kuro, the whole town held a massive festival in celebration of the end of the Hunt. As one would expect, the boar was served as the main entree for the banquet. Shirou and the others, excluding Kuro, stood together and shared drinks and laughed together as though they didn't have a care in the world. Kuro stood alone, quietly sipping wine as he watched the people of Erfrierung with a light smile on his face.

“Wow, seeing you with an actual look of enjoyment on your face is rather weird.” Kuro looked up from his glass and to his right to which he saw Maria, looking forward while drinking the remainder of her glass before setting it to get side. “I'm sorry, have we… met before?” Kuro asked her, to which she replied, “No, not particularly… But, Kuro. I have a warning for you…” She turned to the male at her left, a serious look on her face as she continued, “If I hear so much a whisper that you've done anything to those four, I will personally deal with you.”

Kuro closed his eyes and chuckled, starting to walk away as he replied, “Heh… Big words from the Protege of Merlin himself. I suppose ought to take your words seriously…” As he spoke, he turned to face her. His face was twisted into a grim smile, his left eye blackened, his pupil and Iris becoming white.

“...Right?”

He chuckled as he walked away, disappearing into the crowd as Maria glared in the direction of the swordsman, as if he could see him through the crowd.


© Copyright 2020 Allen Darkmyst. All rights reserved.

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