Crisis

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

Chapter 58 (v.1) - The Black Potion

Submitted: December 25, 2014

Reads: 1142

Comments: 1

A A A | A A A

Submitted: December 25, 2014

A A A

A A A

The Black Potion:

Lance—

I felt them all around me…the lives of all my friends…the lives that had ended abruptly…

From this World of absolute darkness, I saw it all…

I saw the people of Crisis running in fear on the streets as the Titans eradicated portions of Continents with little effort, saw Atreyu set the entire Planet ablaze, saw him wipe out our Solar System, saw the Universe eventually submit to his wicked will…

“I…I failed,” I murmured. “At least I’m where I belong…a World of Darkness…blackened just like my soul.”

“Is that really what you think?” a voice rang out from the unknown darkness.

There was suddenly a light, and I found myself plummeting towards a large pillar made of mosaic glass. I struck it softly, and slowly got to my feet.

dive_to_the_heart__awakening_by_narxinba

(The Void Of Nothingness)

“Whose there?” I asked aloud.

As an answer to my question, black flames erupted in front of me, spawning the form of a young man with dirty blonde hair, no shirt, blackened eyes…and two dark horns growing from the top of his head.

“Lance Blade,” he said in a dry, monotonous voice. “I have watched you for some time now. I know everything there is to know about you. I know your strengths, your weaknesses, your triumphs and your failures. Such is the perks…of bearing my Mark.”

“Y-your Mark?” I asked.

“That Execution Mark of yours-not the forms that it takes upon unleashing a different Execution Level, but it’s regular Mark, the Base Mark that is unique only to your kind,” he said. “I sense many questions on your mind. Some of them I will answer, others, you will deduce on your own…or not…it depends entirely upon you.”

“What do you mean though? What do you mean YOUR Mark? Are you…the Birth-Father of the Marked Ones?”

“I see you catch on quickly to obvious details,” he teased cruelly. “The Clan that you derive from on your Father’s side, the Marked Ones, they are the descendants of my own children.”

“So then…who are you?”

“I am the Horned God,” he replied. “I am known as Belial."

(The Horned God-Belial)

"It means, ‘The Wicked One’ in some ancient language on Crisis, ‘He who bears Darkness’ in another, and so forth. You can say that I am the source of all things that eradicates the light, of all things evil. About three thousand years ago, I, alongside of the Lunar Goddess, helped to build Crisis. But I was naïve, she wasn’t the woman who I once knew after all was said and done. I guess being a Goddess can make a spare few quite conceited.”

“So this…is your Mark?” I asked as I held my left hand up. “What does all of this you’re telling me have to do with ANYTHING?! All of my friends…they’re dead. Crisis is gone now…Atreyu won. He’s fulfilled his desire…the Lunar Goddess is probably out wreaking havoc with him as we speak.”

To my surprise, Belial chuckled.

“I see you still know nothing of his true goal. Atreyu’s plan has failed miserably, because you play a key part in it. And with your coming here, a very core component he was gambling on has been lost.”

“What are you talking about?!” I snapped.

“Sorry, I’m not at liberty to say,” he said.

“Listen, I’ve just lost everything!” I yelled. “My family, my friends…even the woman I loved…everything I could hold dear to me is gone now! But I’m not content…I want…I want to fight! I want to fix everything! I want to save EVERYONE!!”

Belial seemed shocked at my sudden spurt of inspiration, but his face remained the same.

“That’s why I’ve brought you here, Lance Blade,” he said with a smirk. “Only someone like you, someone who bears my Mark can receive the gift I have. I am willing to extend an opportunity for you to fix the Timeline, but of course, these things aren’t free of charge. There are rules you have to follow, of course.”

“Tell me,” I hissed. “I don’t care if I have to sell my soul…tell me…what do I do…to get a second chance?”

He smiled again before disappearing into the darkness once again, leaving behind a small vial filled to the brim with a pure black potion with sizzling white strings steaming from above.

Philter_by_pirate_princess999.jpg

(The Black Potion)

“Drink,” I heard his voice command. “Upon drinking this, you are completing the contract. Your Soul will be bound to the confines of this task till you either fail, break the rules, or succeed…as we are hoping.”

I stepped forward and grasped the goblet with my left hand.

I had no idea what he was going to have me do…

No idea what this entailed for me to give in return…

But for my friends…I was willing to take the risk…

For Hunter…

For Amberlin…

For Rose…

For Lucifer…

For Jackson…

For Hugo…

For Aidan…

For Seth…

For Kotomi…

For Carla…

For Ayane...

For Marlette…

For Trinity…

For Millicent…for Millicent…

I  raised the goblet to my mouth and emptied the Potion down my throat. As the last drop was swallowed, my body was covered in chills all over. My skin tingled, my eyes and face burned white hot, and every part of my body changed and transformed. I felt my spine snap as I was lifted into the air, screaming loudly as dark vines entangled my body…

This sacrifice was likely going to be a very...very painful one...

***

The Black Potion Part II-Becoming The Shroud:

Lance—

I dropped down on the ground after a few agonizing moments in the air. I was now garbed in an all-black cloak and shirt. I was also looking through the cut out slits of a mask.

“I…I have become…that thing!” I screamed.

The Shroud…the Shroud was…ME!

Games__039334_.jpg

(Lance Blade-The Shroud)

He was never trying to save me…

All those times that he’s been appearing to save me from impending doom, it was just to preserve me…for the perfect moment to kill me!

“I see you’ve finally figured it out,” Belial’s voice rang out. He appeared before me again, smiling that same dark smile. “Lance Blade, this is my official invitation to you, to give you a second chance at completing your mission. As you may know, the Shroud gives one the ability to travel back through time to rectify past actions. Or you may not have known, I don’t care either which way.” He then chuckled wickedly. “Now, as I said before, there are certain things that you have to promise me, certain rules that you must follow. The Timeline is a very delicate thing; it makes no exceptions for certain events. What is written cannot be changed. Even with my Power, you have a handful of Liberties that I can grant you. There are several instances where you would have perished without pre-requisite intervention. You must go back in time and ensure that you survive until a moment where you can effectively kill yourself.”

“Alright,” I said. “It’s morbid…but I’ll do it if I can save my friends—

“You don’t seem to understand,” Belial laughed. “You cannot kill yourself in front of anyone. There must be no witnesses. Should someone see this, you will have ruptured the timeline and cause a Paradox. If you are the cause of a Paradox, the Powers That Be will pass judgment on you, and your Soul…will cease…to exist.”

“If I can go back in time,” I said. “Will Millicent—?”

“Millicent Wind is the only one of the deceased whose death cannot be changed. I’m not sure if you’ve found out already, but we’ve got a new Deity on the block, and goodness…they are quite Powerful. They permitted me to rectify everything else except for her death.”

“It’s Atreyu isn’t it?” I asked.

Belial laughed once again.

“I am not at liberty to say,” he chuckled. I picked up my Katana and prepared to sheathe it, but Belial wrenched it out of my fingers and threw it off the edge of the Pillar, and I watched it fall into the dark abyss.

“My Sword!” I screamed. “Why would you do that?! That’s more important to me than anything!”

“Are you an idiot?” Belial chastised in a humored tone. “The Black Blade is a recently refurbished ancient Weapon. Hugo Tech didn’t make it from scratch you know. He was smart enough to know what materials would restore it to its former glory without damaging it. It is a one of a kind Katana. How do you think people would respond if there were two people running around with it? Paradox…Lance Blade. You’re going to have to watch your actions if you are to avoid failing once again.”

“Once again?” I asked.

“Yes,” Belial replied. “I’ve granted you these Powers once before, in order to turn you into the Shroud. But as you know, not only did he cause your friends deaths because he was too daft to get to you in time, he went and got himself killed by you. Technically speaking, you don’t exist past that point in time as things stand.”

I closed my eyes and took a deep breath.

Could I really do this?

I failed once before…and look at what happened…

Would my Past-Selves be caught in a never ending cycle of trying to fix everything if I were unsuccessful?

No…I had to be successful…

Millicent may have been lost to me…but I’ve got a ton of other people that can be saved…

All I had now was one question…

“What Sword will you give me?” I asked.

Belial smiled and held his hand out. My Execution Mark lit up and burnt my flesh, causing a bright flash of light. Once it cleared, I was holding the same Sword that the previous Shroud used. It was a Short Sword, so it was about 16 inches long give or take. The Hilt was made from pure Elder Wood, and the Guard consisted of four black extensions that stuck out and curved upwards. The blade itself was a steel gray color, and the indentation up near the point indicated that it functioned like a very large Switchblade. Using the Mechanism located at the base of the Hilt, I retracted the blade, extracted it again, threw it up to flip in the air a few times and caught it.

“She’s strong,” I said admirably. “And really light…the material weighs less than air but it’s tougher than steel. What’s her name?”

“It’s called Abelia,” said Belial. “In fact, that is the Sister Sword to the Black Blade, whose name is Yuuko. I created both of them from the fragmented Souls of two Warriors from Ancient Times. They harness my own Power.”

(Abelia-The Sword)

I flipped Abelia around my fingers before retracting the blade once again and sheathing it.

“Why are you doing all of this for me?” I asked him.

“Mostly I’m doing it for mindless fun,” Belial said. “Do you have any idea how boring it is to have lived for millions of years, know that I will live for millions more from this point, and millions more after that? It’s no fun. Change…now that is fun. I can see all the tomorrows of every living being in this Universe and beyond. It gets dull after a few days. But when I intervene, it makes things…interesting. Not to mention I have a favor I’m pulling for a New Friend who shall remain nameless. Let’s just say…you have a Guardian Angel watching over you Lance Blade…be grateful that their Power exceeds my own…and that I find you an interesting man.”

“Can Crisis still be saved?” I asked. “Do you see Atreyu meeting his end? Tell me.”

“I don’t need to tell you,” Belial smirked. “Because if I told you exactly what actions to take to stop impending doom…then there would be no fun. Will you fail in your mission, and will I stand before you once more to speak these exact phrases? Or will you rise above and surprise the heck out of me? Either way, I’m expecting one hell of a show from you. Now go…Lance Blade. I’m taking you back six months from now. How and where you will save your own life well…that’s for you to discover.”

Belial grinned again before disappearing, and as he left, the Pillar shattered, and I fell through the darkness once more…


© Copyright 2020 S.R.B. Gray. All rights reserved.

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