Author’s Note: Special update for both Mind Linker and Valkyrie’s Lament. For some reason I feel happy today, so I’ll be spreading my happiness with you guys and uploading an extra chapter. I hope you enjoy the story, also looking for proofreaders.
Crystal was the first one to lead the way out into the hallway. She didn’t just stop, shaking in her boots like any female girls I would typically see, but strutted forward with intent. She knew that they were dangers ahead, and right now she was extra careful. Her rifle was pointing in front of her, she turned the corner, making sure that they weren’t anyone sneaking up in front or behind them.
My throat tightened, my heart started to pick up in speed, and I knew I was scared. The thought of meeting another croc demon lady wasn’t on my first priority to do list. Staying far away and living another day was my goal, getting stronger slowly over time was the best way to stay alive, plus the only fighting experience was that one time against the crazy croc lady and I barely survived. I couldn’t help but hold my hand tighter around the sheath, ready to draw in seconds if need be.
I wasn’t a coward, I just didn’t like looking for trouble, especially if it meant dying. I appreciated my second life more than I ever thought I would, but I didn’t understand why I was still following her. Maybe it was because the thought of her possibly getting hurt or possibly dying kept me going. Maybe it was pride of wanting to protect someone, I don’t know.
My self conscious didn’t allow to see someone like her end up dead, even though she’s probably better at staying alive and surviving than me. Plus, having two Ouroboros watching each other’s back was a lot better than none.
The blaring sound of the emergency suddenly stops, and an eerie silenced followed after. Making me feel a bit uneasy. Only the flashing red continually to blink on and off, jarring my senses.
“Keep your eyes open and watch my back.” Crystal replied in a whisper. “You can tell when you meet a Demon by the glowing red color of their eyes, the sulfuric smell, and the drop of temperature. But the most important thing is the feeling that you get.”
“It’s the gut feeling, followed by their change. They can’t hide what they are from us.”
“What if we get them wrong? What if we kill a normal human?” I couldn’t help but be skeptical about what she said. There were always chances that we would make mistakes.
“Not possible, we haven’t missed one as of yet. It’s like a part of us. We are able to sense when something is unusual, and when we reveal its true nature, the others know it as just as well and they are not lenient to the people who obstruct their hunting ground.”
“Okay, but why do you think they attack this building now of all times? I thought this place was safe.”
“Not everything is fool proof, eventually the demons will find their way in here even if it takes a long time to figure out how. This was bound to happen, and we’re lucky to experience it and catch it early before we miss it later on.”
“I’m not sure that is a good thing. A bunch of us will die.”
“That is to be expected. Ouroboros are fighters, we struggled and won against death and survived.”
I wasn’t so sure if I was a fighter, but the way she had said it made more sense. I wouldn’t have wished to live another day if I didn’t fight to stay alive. Now that I think about it, I wasn’t just a pushover that would allow even death to stop me from dying, I was a survivor, and today I was going to live another day if I have to kill.
The thought of killing a demon a second time didn’t phase me as much as the first time. It was more mind numbing experience, making fighting and surviving a lot easier to handle and cope with.
“Though, what I don’t understand is why they are attacking in broad daylight. It’s not like them at all.” She hissed. The partial darkness of the hallway made the whole atmosphere a bit spooky.
“Do they only come out at night?”
“No, they’re just stronger during the night, so to not compromise their strength, they stay dormant during the day. Plus, hijacking a human’s body already cuts down their strength by a half, and coming out during the day also cut down their power even further.”
“That was only a quarter of their strength?” I was completely appalled at the thought of their powers hindered by sun and the limits of a human body, I couldn’t fathom what were they truly like when they had all their powers. The Croc lady was strong enough, thinking of them doing an attack even more fantastical that went beyond the scope of my imagination made my head hurt.
“A quarter?” Crystal thought for a moment. “You could say that. After you fight your first one, their power increases by leaps and bounds, so you could think of what we’re going up against is a lot more dangerous.”
“Shit.” I cursed so loud, Crystal glared at me.
“Any louder, you’ll attract our enemies.”
“Sorry.” I whispered, hanging my head down embarrassed. The thought of fighting something equivalent level or above of the Croc lady gave me the shiver. “Does that mean we’re fighting against an Egyptian type?”
“You ask so many questions, and to answer your question, I don’t know.” She whipped around the corner, and stopped. Her body tensed, and I froze, wondering what she was seeing right this moment. She seem so focused that I even I had my breath hold in silence, taking short breath if I needed too, trying not to break her concentration or worse compromise our position.
My hand started to sweat, I couldn’t help but shift slowly from one side to another in the hopes of lessening the uncomfortable weight on my leg, the long drawn out minute wasn’t helping it, making the uncomfortability increase.
We stood in place for five minutes, until Crystal finally moved. I felt my breath started to relax, and the burning feeling in my chest was dissipating quickly.
A sudden soft sound of clop clop of footsteps could be heard echoing in the hallway. Even my heartbeat matched the clop….clop…clip….clop on the floor behind me. Like a blind man with a cane, I dragged the edge of the sword on the floor and whipped my head towards the darkness that was partially illuminated by the emergency lights over head.
Clip…Clop…Clop…Clop. The sound got louder and louder to the point where I thought the sound of the footsteps was right beside me.
“Tehehehehehe.” A child’s voice rung out softly, making me have goose bumps up and down my arms.
I gulped. What the hell was that? My hand slowly grabbed the hilt, and started to slip out the sword.
The emergency light started to flicker and dim, one-by-one it flashed off with one last dying struggle, making it slowly become darker.
My body took an inch back, my butt bumps Crystal, causing me to jump. I twirled around, Crystal staring at me as her eyes became a thin line in annoyance. She pointed her fingers at her eyes, and back out into the darkness. Though on her side, the lighting was a lot more brighter than mine.
She started to inch forward, taking a step towards the elevator, where the end of the hallway laid. I wasn’t keen on staying behind, and my feet was already stumbling after her.
Loud grinding sound of metal could be heard, the lights on the elevator blinks on, telling us that someone was coming up. Crystal pointed her rifle directly at the elevator, her finger ready to pull the trigger if she needed too. With a ding, the elevator cranks open, revealing nobody inside. It stayed open, not even closing even after a few minute as if it was stuck in place.
Clip….Clop.Whhhhhhiiiiinnnnnnng! Crackle! Crackle! Pop!
”Teehehehehhehehehehe.” A full out burst of giggling of a child’s voice rung out in a high pitch tone.
Out in the corner of my eyes, I saw light flash across from one corner to the next. I whipped my head towards the sound, and what I saw made me temporarily freeze.
A young boy, or was it a girl? I wasn’t sure and telling this kid’s gender wasn’t easy. He had on a white shirt with a brown shorts that was clasped on with a clip on both sides. The most creepy thing about the child was brown sack over its head, drawn on it with black marker was an simple cartoon eyes winking with a smile like a scarecrow. The only thing I could think of at this moment was, what the hell was a child doing with a bag over its head? The thought of him possibly suffocating did cross my mind, but he started to skip towards me with a high pitched giggle.
Something about that child was seriously creepy. Not just the high laugh, or the high energy skip, but two out three movement of his steps, he seem to blur temporarily like static. The little boy even had a yoyo, twirling around his hand in an upbeat manner.
Then it happened all in under one second, the force of the unsuspecting attack rammed me face first up against the nearest wall knocking the wind out of me. Warm blood trickled from my nose and blood ran down my cheek. I didn’t see what hit me, but I felt the impact of it throughout my whole body, shaking my core. For such an attack to even be felt through the Dragon Scale was considered astronomically powerful, making my head buzz.
“Teheheheheheheh!” The boy giggled, the yoyo in his hand slipped back into his hand. “I’m hungry.”
I slipped onto the ground, coughing heavily trying to catch my breath. Reaching up with a shaky hand, I wipe my bloody nose and coughed one more time. The pain from whatever he hit me felt like a motorcycle bulldozed into my guts, I got the feeling there were possible purple blotches left by that attack. For sure, I didn’t want to get hit with whatever it was again, especially my head, where there wasn’t any protection at all.
“I’m hungry. Would you feed me?” The yoyo in his hand crackled into a high intensity buzz. Electricity spilled out from the yoyo like a taser. A heavy thunk followed after, creating a deep indentation into the ground.
My eyes became wide, and stare flabbergasted at what the little boy could do. Shit. This was a child demon, who would’ve thought he was so powerful? How was this only a fourth of their strength? Compared to the Croc Lady, the difference was heaven to earth. Not only that, I could see now the black smokes rising out of his body just like the time when the Croc lady had his, though the child didn’t change at all and instead still kept his form.
A loud tat tat tat sound of the rifle going off blasted near me, giving me a jarring wake. Crystal was ruthlessly shooting towards the child demon without remorse. Her eyes were emotionless and her fingers continued to pull the trigger.
“Hurry up and get back!” Crystal yelled in between shots. Her bullets were repelled with the twirling of the yoyo, making the whole scene surreal.
The boy twirled it all around him perfectly without a single mess up, and each bullet that hit the yoyo was flung towards the side or behind him without touching a single ounce of his skin.
“I’m hungry. Feed me.”
“Eat this!” Crystal continued to fire until the magazine became empty. With a click, she dropped the magazine onto the floor, pulled out another in between her cleavage and slammed it into place. Her hand reached over, pulled the bolt, and less loose once again.
I painstakingly got up using the sheath as a prop, feeling a jabbing pain in my stomach, I gritted my teeth and got up. My feet gave way, I stumbled, catching myself just in time.
“Watch out!” Crystal yelled.
I felt an immediate threat to my life, without thinking too much about it, my hand drew the sword in one fluid motion. A surge of energy shot forth from my core of my stomach, and a soft glimmer of gold wrapped around the sword. With a loud clink, the yoyo bounced off, completely leaving the sword undamaged.
With a stomp of his feet, the young boy growled. His hand yanked back the down yoyo, this time he brought out a second one out of his pocket. Electric sparks were sent outwards as energy swirled around both yoyo’s with a sickening red and yellow light. I could tell this wasn’t any normal energy, even the energy it was giving off had an oppressive feel that made me shiver in fear.
The young boy reeled back his hand, and threw the first yoyo in his right hand. In Between mid-flight, the yoyo shifted and changed into a large mechanical Doberman with red eyes that angrily rushed forward with the intent to kill me.
I scrambled onto my feet, and dodged just in time before the metal claws blew past my ear, clipping a bit of my hair with it. With a slam, the Doberman embedded itself into the wall, and pushed off in one jump. Sharp teeth baring, claws outstretched it chased me ruthlessly, I didn’t look back and jumped towards Crystal.
We both clattered onto the ground as the Doberman’s teeth flew across where Crystal’s head was missed by a skin of our teeth. With a bang, the Doberman hit head first itself onto the opposite wall, stunning itself temporarily.
“I’m hungry!” The child screamed in anger, stomping his feet up and down that his attack was missing.
I scrambled up onto my feet, dragging Crystal up along with me, and dove into the elevator. My hands shot forward, pressing the closest number 33 and following after the button to close in a fierce repetitive motion.
Crystal was on the ground, her hand still holding onto the rifle in hand, she aimed and fired. The second yoyo danced around the boy’s body, shifting into a large mechanical eagle creating a perfect defensive shield. With a twitch of his finger, he pulled out another yoyo into his hand.
“I’m hungry. Can I eat your soul?” The boy cocked his head, black and red flames erupted out of his hand, creating an unearthly high shrill. More yoyos were brought out as they each changed into mechanical dogs. A pack of hounds race forward in the attempt to kills us.
“Eat shit!” Crystal growled, her hand stopped pulling on the trigger and what I saw her pull out from her pocket made my eyes grow wide. My cheek and eye twitched, wondering where she had gotten such an item.
She had a flashbang in her hand, she pulled the pin, and chucked it towards the boy. A bright flash of stunning light erupted outwards followed by an ear piercing bang. All I saw was white, high pitch buzz like ring echoed in my ear. The door finally closed shut, the elevator jostled downwards.
It took for a moment for my sight to come back to clarity, but the ringing in my head was still buzzing loudly without seeming to stop. I flopped to the side, letting my aching bloody head to rest. The adrenaline rush was still pumping through my system, giving me the constant adrenaline rush like feel and even dousing down the pain.
I swear, I thought the elevator was going down slower than usual, but that didn’t matter. For that brief moment, I felt like I was safe, even if it was temporarily. Hoping to win against that child demon was possibly impossible right now, especially what it could do.
Crystal slammed her fist into the side of the wall, pissed off that her bullets didn’t even phased the demon. “What the hell was that?!” She replied angrily. “I never seen such high level demon before, not even normal weapons can kill it? Is that even possible?”
“I believe they are demons.” I replied, knowing that wasn’t the best answer to reply towards her question, she blew air out of her mouth in frustration. “So you never seen this type of demon before?”
Crystal took a moment to think it over. “I thought it was just a child demon, in which case their power far lower than an adult demon, but this demon far exceeds an adult. Possibly even pushing past an Egyptian that you fought.”
I gulped. “Just out of curiosity, do demons usually eat souls?”
Crystal turned her head towards me, her face hardened, and her lips became a crease. “Usually, no, but there are cases where I heard that high level demon do to increase their power by eating souls. Didn’t you learn some of these basic info about demon?”
“About that…..I didn’t get a chance too. This has been my fourth day here.”
“I see. Well for starters they are Spirit, Child, Adult, Ancients, Legends, and Mythical class of demons. Spirit are the lowest of the low, in which case inhabits animal bodies for a host. They don’t have much power to cause much supernatural things to happen, so there not as dangerous, but can still cause quite a problem. A child type are exactly what it means, they inhibit children body, making them tricky to kill. What makes them deadly is their imaginations that far surpasses an Adult, while an Adult type has the backing of half of their power when they possess an adult body. The devastation they could cause are quite phenomenal. Ancients are the next step up and their category starts to hover on the border of Mythical type depending on their strength. The longer the demon had lived the higher their power, all those religious gods, demigods, and demons from different cultures have their own set of powerful demons and spirits. So far, the Chinese and the Egyptian are classified in the high tier of an Ancient, some bordering past into Legends. So far we haven’t had a run in with a Mythical type Demon, but right now I can’t but think that that kid falls close to it.”
“Is there anything higher than Mythical?”
Crystal went silent. Her eyes furrowed, and her lips turned into a frown. Her hand clutched the rifle even tighter, “There is a possibility, but I believe they would be classified as Gods.”
I gulped. Gods. What kind of messed up world is this? Oh wait, its called Earth. Sarcasm riddled my brain. The thoughts of there being God Type demon made me freeze up, right now we were having trouble with a boy demon, and if a God Type demon appeared that all of humanity’s life was over.
Breathing in deeply, I steeled my heart and breathing out to calm my nerves. I needed to be mentally strong, even if I wasn’t physically strong now, that would come in due time. Our priorities was to either lure the demon out of the building and reset the whole barrier or destroy it if it’s even possible.
Right now, luring it was the best option and the only one who could possibly re-fortify the barrier was Timothy. It wasn’t much of a plan, but it was definitely something, he might know what caused the barrier to collapse, giving us the clue that we needed.
“I have a plan.” I spoke with a bit more dedication than I thought.
“What would that be?” Crystal asked.
“We go find Timothy and re-fortify the barrier.”
“What purpose would he serve?” Her tone of voice told me that she didn’t quite like Timothy.
“He’ll probably know why the barrier came undone, especially if he knows how to reinforce it. He’s the one that reinforced the talisman.”
Crystal thought it over, thinking about what I just said. Her brow seem to furrow, and then went upwards into recognition, understanding what she just heard. “You’re saying those childish scribbles on the talisman was him?”
Childish scribbles? Timothy might not like hearing that word coming out from Crystal’s mouth, but luckily he wasn’t here.
“I was wondering who it was that used a permanent marker to scribble such ugly words. He couldn’t make it more legible?” She clucked her tongue. “Now I know, and I got a piece of my mind to tell him when I see him.”
Crap, maybe I started something I shouldn’t, but we needed answer fast. Right now, Timothy might know why the talisman has stopped working.
“He did it for a good cause.” I quickly tried to cover up my slight mistake.
“Good cause, my butt. He rerouted the whole flow of energy into a weird spiral. Do you know how difficult it is to undo it? It’s a complete mess!”
“Well, isn’t that good? He made it difficult to undo.”
Crystal snorted. “He made it difficult alright, but the energy flow is cut down by a third. That could be the reason why the demons infiltrated so easily with sheer power, though that would make sense how such a high level demon is here.” Crystal thought it over. “It did require a certain level of strength to break that mess.”
Then does that mean he did a good thing or not? It was getting a bit to confusing for me, and all I could do was nod as if I understood. “So, do you know where he is?” I asked.
“Yes, we’re in the right floor. He should be in his personal workspace. It’s not to far away.”
With a ding, the elevator opened, and we got ready and slowly stepped out wearily.