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Chapter Seven
Discovery
Valis was dead.

Hawk had been awoken by a scream that ripped through the still morning air; he soon recognized it as Erika’s sweet voice. He leapt from his bed and groaned as he saw what was below his window. Grabbing his daggers he slipped from the window and ran to the teenager, she fell back into his arm with a large sob. He kneeled in-front of her and hugged her tightly, looking over her shoulder at the scene before him. There was a body on the slope behind the inn, Valis’ hair was the only thing they could make out. Thousands of tiny cuts littered her visible skin, witch was a lot since her clothing had been… torn in places. Hawk closed his eyes as he saw that the blood had been trailing down the hill into a pool at the bottom

“ERIKA” Avia’s panicked voice shattered the moment and Hawk called back to her

“Over here” He picked up Erika in his arms as he looked near the body. There was a line of footsteps leading into the forest. Running to Avia he handed Erika to her “Get inside, now”

“Oh god Hawk… that’s Valis”

“GO”

Turning on his heel he bolted off into the trees. Avia ran back into the inn and passed Erika to her father as she ran inside, his warm arms carrying his sobbing daughter inside to the warmth.

A twig brushed Hawk’s steady face as he glanced into the trees before he continued on. His eyes wandering over every little detail he could, trying to find some trace of the footsteps that lead from Valis’… desecration. As he moved on he noticed a noise off to his left, he ducked down and started to move quietly in the under-growth. When he drew closer he rose up and pressed against a large tree, looking at a shadow on the ground on the other side of the tree. It was long, with distorted tendrils hanging down as it moved slowly away. Taking a deep breath, Hawk slipped around the tree and brushed against the bark. The figure spun around and fired her arrow into the tree behind Hawk, the head sinking deep into the wood. Hawk had dived out of the way when he brushed the tree; he was now sprawled on the ground and looking up at Avia

“I told you to stay in the inn, you could have got hurt”

“I can take care of my own self Hawk. It doesn’t look like I was the one in trouble either” she flicked her eyes over his shoulder at the arrow deep in the bark. Her eyes scanned around and then she gave Hawk a hand up

“I didn’t mean it like that Avia… we don’t know what is out here anymore”

“I know Hawk, its fine”

They stood quietly for a few minutes, looking around at the timeless trees

“There is nothing here, they, it, the thing is long gone” Hawk ran his hand through his hair and sighed “Valis… her blood had settled in the lower part of her arms and legs…”

With this Avia closed her eyes and turned away

“She’s been gone for hours, I’m sorry Avia”

“It’s not your fault Hawk, we let her go last night. We didn’t know” Avia opened her eyes and looked at the dirt, face blank “We should get back, father will be worried”

“Erika will want you”

“Us, come on”

The two set off home, Avia in the lead.

A while later they walked into the shadow of the inn, Avia stopped and looked at Valis body. She shuddered and backed away slightly; bumping into Hawk she turned and pressed her face into his chest… everything just too much. Sighing deeply he put one hand on her back and then held one hand out. A gust of wind curled around Valis until Hawk compressed it into a small dome, freezing it and expanding it with his words caught on the wind. Avia turned and smiled sadly, Valis was encased in a dome of ice, the world unable to touch her and human eyes unable to fall prey to the sight

“Hawk, no one should have to see her like that”

“Come on Avia, your sisters waiting” Hawk pushed her a little and she started off to the inn. With Hawk looking up at the window and seeing Thanos nod at him with a grim face full of concern. Bowing slightly he started off after Avia, with Thanos moving from the window. The two youngsters walked through the door as Thanos stepped into the dining room of the inn, his face set

“Is Erika ok father?”

“She’s shocked but warm and in bed, you should keep her company for a bit” he motioned towards the stairs

“Alright” Avia moved to her father and he hugged her with one arm tightly, his warmth calming her mind, his eye’s hadn’t moved from SynHawk. Then she moved up the stairs, leaving SynHawk and Thanos alone

“Hawk” Thanos’ voice was firm and he motioned over to the table, they sat down on either side, hands cupped “What is going on? I know you know, I’m not a young fool” he paused “nor an old one. Either way I know you know son”

“Simply put, Vampires.”

“Vampires? This far out from the wastes?”

“The wastes?” now it was SynHawk’s time to be taught, Thanos waved his hand vaguely

“It’s an area to the south heavily guarded by the Army, a dead land. It’s filled with vampires, but they don’t dare stray to the border. You don’t hear much of vampires outside of that area anymore”

“Well, it’s what we are dealing with”

Time passed and the two talked, Hawk explained about last night and once again told the story of Vachilli and her demise. Thanos sat, listened and stoically withstood his grief. Other things needed to be tended to. After a while they were done and Avia ventured down the stairs, fastening her hair back with a long black ribbon, her face set sadly

“Avia how’s Erika?” Hawk stood quickly and Thanos followed, thinking

“She’s alright, jumpy but doing well considering how much she saw”

Sighing, Hawk lent against the table. Avia turned to her father “I’m guessing Hawk has filled you in?”

“Oh yes, he has. But we can talk about that later. For now we have to deal with here and now, telling the village and, finding out more” He placed a hand on the boys shoulder “I want you to look at Valis, you know most about this and, if anything... we have to know if she’s been turned" his voice darkened and he paused, shaking it off "Avia, gather the village, maybe now it is time to tell them how bad this might become” He looked at them both “Lets get to it, if we stand still; others will be at risk”

"Yes sir" SynHawk looked around him absent-mindedly with his thoughts closed off , heading to the door and stepping out, a creaking as the door closed. Avia paused before she moved, something bothering her in more ways than she wanted to admit

"Avia?" Thanos had noticed. He put a strong hand on her shoulder and squeeze slightly "What?" she turned to look at her father and shook her hair, confused

"I can't trust him, I... really want to"

"But your afraid of the secrets he is keeping from us?"

Puzzled, she looked at him

"You know about his secrets?"

"That he has some, yes. I wouldn't let someone so close to my daughters without a little close inspection. But, he is one of the good ones, as far as I can tell"

"Maybe I should give him a chance" Avia's voice was a little vacant, as if she were in her head

"A chance of what?" Thanos smiled to himself and let go of her shoulder, turning away to the bartop

"What?" he looked at her father, pulling a stay hair behind her ear "Oh, trusting him to stay when things get bad"

"He'll be here for that, he already is"

The sun burned SynHawk Tsavo’s eyes as he stepped out into the sun, the middle morning rays seeping directly into his eyelids. He once again shielded his eyes and walked around to the back of the inn, hearing the sounds of the town over the trees. As he turned the corner he stopped short, looking at the dome and sighing tiredly. He had seen so much death, so much suffering as he tried to help people, he just… wanted to help, and he got this instead. As he walked closer the dome reseeded and he squatted down, looking at the small cuts and the torn clothing. He closed his eyes and tensed his jaw as he glanced at the clothing, torn disgracefully over Valis’ ‘chastity’. He moved his eyes and looked up at her neck; it had been bent at an odd angle

“Well, at least you haven’t suffered your sister’s fate... that’s someth…” he paused as a noise entered his mind. A pounding… no… hoof beats…

After a long hug with her father, Avia had made her way into the village, through the hidden wall of trees. As she made her way in, her eyes fell upon Jade by the town hall

“Avia, hey… are you ok?”

“Not really Jade, I have something to tell everyone”

Unfortunately she never spoke; a scream from the surrounding people cut her off, with Jade turning to flee. Avia spun on her heel and then the back of her head exploded, sending her to the ground.

SynHawk’s feet beat along the ground as he burst out of the rim of trees. His eyes darting wildly around for the horsemen, he spied them soaring over the ground. They had come from another section of the road, through the barricade of trees themselves. Five hooded men turned towards the town and then Hawk’s gut sunk, Avia was in their way. He yelled out but no one heard over the screams of the village, he watched as one of the men raised his crossbow and fired at the pair of girls. Time slowed down once again for Hawk he saw the bolt leave the string, his hand shot out and his words got lost in the wind as a bright light soared through the air. Creating a barrier of light behind Avia’s head, the bolt hit it and there was a small wave of sound. She was thrown to the ground, alive. The horsemen saw this and turned to SynHawk, the four other crossbows raised

“Ah SynHawk, I was expecting you to turn up right about now. One of your old habits” SynHawk froze and then muttered under his breath.

“Damn it, not again” He heard a running of footsteps in the now deserted clearing. Turning, he saw Erika running to Avia’s thrown figure; she hadn’t bothered to look around.

“Erika! no!” He watched helplessly as one of the riders turned and fired his crossbow at Erika’s running figure. He grimaced and flicked a dagger from the back of his belt into the chest of the man, sending the bolt off at an odd angle as the man slumped to the side. As the remaining men saw this; two of them fired at Hawk’s chest. He adeptly twisted from one of the bolts but the second was true, it struck him hard in the shoulder, sending him down into the dirt in pain. Erika screamed and cowered by her sister’s body, just as Avia started to stir. She opened her eyes and saw Hawk’s bloodied hair on the ground, his head turning towards her and shaking. His mouth saying one word, silently, through his groans

Down.
Avia tensed slightly but let her body go limp, safely.

A horse whinnied, a rough sliding sound scraping the air. The riders were beginning to dismount, spreading out in a circle. But one, only one moved towards SynHawk Tsavo. His hands removed his helmet and let it drop to the ground, his bald head glistening. Groaning, Hawk saw the man and tried to stand fruitlessly

“Now now SynHawk, don’t get up too fast or you might pull something” walking up to Hawk’s bleeding body he placed one foot against his chest and pushed, sending him back into the dirt “and you don’t need to get up on my account, friends and all”

Gritting his teeth tightly SynHawk was silent, looking up darkly into the mans eyes “You’re a hard man to track down SynHawk Tsavo. Almost lost me back there in Cimcaler, but not quite

“Maybe you should try a leash next time” our hero laughed wetly

“Maybe… But I don’t intend there will be much to run away, or even to put a collar around after this. Don’t worry”

“How reassuring” Moving slowly, SynHawk made his way to standing. An evil smirk on the strangers face

“I did say stay down didn’t I?”

“I was never one for orders Sholdon, and never from a bastard like you. Willing to cut down anything in his path”

“To get to things like you? Yes, I will”

“I saw what you did to her, she was your own- ”

Before SynHawk could finish his sentence, Sholdon flicked his hand up and caught Hawk in the throat. Then bringing his knee into the boys chest and pushing him over deftly, sighing

“Yes anything. But don’t forget anything will include your precious things too… you seem to be overly concerned about those two girls over there for example…” his voice carried over the now chilled morning wind

“No Sholdon” Hawk panted softly “Leave them out of these, whatever you do. You do it to me.”

Bending down, Sholdon kneeled by SynHawk Tsavo. Placing one hand under the boys neck

“Well, if you want to be honorable… alright.” With his words he placed his scarred fingers around the shaft in SynHawk’s shoulder, and pushed. There was a rip, a crack, and then a short scream as the end shattered the boy’s bone. Leaving him panting heavily in pain as the cold man dropped him into the dirt

“Get the girl. The young one I think” he spoke dismissively, as if finding cattle to carve

“Erika…” Hawk choked on his voice.Erika tried to run as two men walked to her, but they caught her arms as she covered Avia, her sister’s eye tightly shut as she prayed. Hawk, I trust you… please have a plan. Her legs tensed as Erika was taken, ready to jump if she heard even a hair of her little sisters hair snapped

“I never was one for keeping my word with filth like you. Oh… now I do have a chance to take something back from you, that you took from me” he walked to Erika and patted her on the head, his other hand raising before her eyes. His right index finger was missing “Not that I am taking it from your own hand”

“No Sholdon, no…” SynHawk looked up and then found Erika’s scared eyes, throwing one quick wink to her. His own mind slowly blocking out the pain so he could concentrate

“Come now SynHawk. You took something from me, isn’t it only fair if I take it back? Don’t you fight by justice and hope?”

“If you touch her… or her sister, it will hurt you very much more”

Almost a growl flowed into the air as Sholdon quickly turned on the boy, bending down

“Don’t you dare threaten me boy. I know your tricks and right now you don’t have much up your sleeve. Or what’s left of it, so I would shut it Wing Boy

Avia’ ear pricked up with this. But there was a more pressing matter, namely the small fire that had just erupted on Sholdon’s cloak.

The only reason he noticed was his three guards cursing and yelling to their boss

“Oh for god’s sakes SynHawk” Sholdon got up and sighed, unclipping his cloak “That’s it? Your big magic is to singe my cloak? I’ve seen Faye crap better magic”

“Who said I did it?”

Erika yelled and suddenly a bust of flame erupted from the cloak. Rising above her and hovering with the size of a baseball

“Oh I see. You have a prodigy” he eyed her up and down, slightly weary of the flame “Well, she’s cute but I doubt she has the fire you have”

“She will if she has any of her sister in her”

Erika grinned and then looked behind her, Avia had got up and was moving quickly to two horses

Get her!” Sholdon motioned for his guards to take Avia, his own movements taking him towards Erika “I’ll deal with his fire-child” he moved one arm to draw a long-sword from a sheath on his back. The steely sound frightening Erika, but she stood with the ball of fire over her, glowing.

Meanwhile, Avia had not been able to cover the distance to the men’s horses. She was in the open, with the last loaded crossbow pointed at her. One of them laughed and clapped his friends shoulder, pointing at her

“Off you go” the friend raised it and fired. But Avia was one step ahead of them; she dived below the bolt and rolled to the side. Now circling the three men, one of them pushed the archer out of the way and draw a short sword on the un-armed girl

“Come on then girly, show me what you’ve got” his voice thick and dull, Avia just smirked. He ran at her and swung, ducking under the blow she stuck out her foot and grabbed onto his wrist. Twisting it and making him cry out as he dropped the blade. Looking up at her he saw the heel of her boot.

Moving quickly as the two men draw their blades, Avia dived over their friend’s body, whose nose and eyes were bleeding quite badly by now, and wrapped her fingers around his sword in the dirt. They quickly moved between Avia and Sholdon, making her retreat away from their boss.

“Well then, show me what you have… Erika was it?” Sholdon made a menacing step towards her, her own eyes darting to SynHawk as he nodded. With her eyes ablaze she twisted her wrists and sent the ball hurdling towards Sholdon. He scoffed and raised his blade to slash it and break the spell, but somewhere in it journey to him it seemed to triple in size. Then double, again. SynHawk gave a groan as he felt magic being pulled from his life, the fire spreading in his bones. It hit Sholdon, hard, sending him back to the ground and sliding in the dirt. SynHawk fell back and panted loudly, with Erika crawling over to him

“Oh Hawk…”

“Your sister…”

“Those two are nothing for her”

“No I mean Sholdon, I can’t… help you again, it’s too risky… my life”

“But…” Erika’s voice wavered slightly, the depth of knowledge coming out again “Your life is connected to you life? That would make you…”

“Cleaver girl” Sholdon was already on his knees, a burnt leather chest falling from him and leaving just a black shirt “He’s not entirely what he seems to be is he?” he kicked his leather “SynHawk! You’ll pay for that” he grabbed Erika by the hair when he got to the girl and threw her out of the way. He pulled Hawk up by the scruff of his shirt and pressed his long-sword to his neck “I’ll end this for you monster”

“Your guards don’t seem to be… going too well anymore”

Avia saw the ball of fire smash into Sholdon’s chest and she smiled inside, her feet moving. The two men had pushed her towards the horse; she moved behind it and crouched. One of them men motioned to his friend to move around and surprise her, but she had other plans. As the man walked around she placed her foot in the stirrups and vaulted over the horse. Sending her foot into the second mans chest. As he went down she looped her arm around his arm and there was a distinctive crack. Picking up his second blade she dived away from his friends. Anger only on his face

“You get away from him…” he swung at her and she ducked under it, in turn she flicked her leg at his face. He also ducked, but then saw her blade meet his face on the follow through. He went down like his two partners

“Your guards don’t seem to be… going too well anymore” SynHawk’s voice echoed into her mind as she looked over. Seeing Sholdon’s blade at SynHawk’s throat

“Do I have to do everything myself! Stay there!” he threw Hawk violently back to the ground and kicked him in the stomach, the bolt snapping with the force. He moved towards Avia and smiled evilly as they backed away from SynHawk and Erika, into a small dueling circle that they started to trace

“Girl, What’s your name? I would hate to kill such a pretty thing without knowing her name”

“Avia, and I’m not your pretty thing”

“Oh but you will be once he’s dead. You and your sister, many times”

A sick grin swept onto his face, his humanity had been left many pages ago.

“You’re disgusting”

“All a point of view, but for now all that matters is you’re MINE!” he yelled at her, attacking, his blade swinging deftly towards her. Avia’s blades parrying his and swiftly striking at his own body; but each time his blade was just that little bit faster, that little more controlled than hers. She started to quickly doubt herself

“Erika…” SynHawk got onto one arm and grimaced, pulling the two parts of bolt from his shoulder “you have to get him away from her. There is a reason I was running from him” his voice was strained and worried “He’s going to end up killing her”

Erika nodded and closed her eye’s, shaking with fear

“Let’s see just what I’ve learnt” the two of them slowly got up, SynHawk standing on his strained limbs and Erika in-front… a red gleam on her hands.


Submitted: March 19, 2008

© Copyright 2022 SynHawk. All rights reserved.

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DarkFairy8907

Oh my gosh I've been on so long that it logged me off, lol. Anyway... You just need to fix the format and you'll be good to go. You took out some parts that I remember reading and did some rearranging, it worked out very nice.

Now you owe me a 6th chapter so I can catch up to you :P

~DarkFairy~

Wed, March 19th, 2008 7:23am

Author
Reply

mmm At the moment I am actually not editing but re-writing it from scratch, so some parts might be completely different. But from now on you will never know!

Send all you want hehe, I am going to try and write, or start CH8 tonight

(im at work on the laptop atm so i had to use wordpad... no format at all ~sighs~)

Hawk ^^

Wed, March 19th, 2008 12:26am

Alice Oiseau

ahhh i loved it!! and i sooo cant wait till the next chapter. you had me glued to the screen from the start. well written. gah i hope avia is going to okay. keep in touch and let me know when you get the next chapter up. ^^

Wed, March 19th, 2008 5:24pm

Author
Reply

Thankyou very much ^_^ and she... might be. hehe.

I'll keep in touch, if anything on your novel ;-)

I should have the next chapter soon..ish. It's 90% action so thats easy for me lol, plus it's new for everyone so that will be fun, not that there are any twists coming oh no no no....yes.

Hawk ^^

Wed, March 19th, 2008 1:39pm

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