Both Crystal and I froze, unsure why they were suddenly excited. The little girl stopped in front of Crystal, looking up at her with awe. She was a small little girl with red curly hairs and freckled face. Wearing jeans with a pink tank top and sneakers, making her look cute. She had a slight limp that told us that her right leg was injured possibly from an old injury, but even still she hobbled around her with excitement on her face.
On the other hand, a young boy who looked to be around the age of five gaped at me with round big does eyes, blinking as a bit of drool seeped out from the side of his lip. He raised his thumb and started sucking on it. He wore a simple black shorts and a t-shirt that had Superman print on it. I couldn’t help but stare interested in his shirt. I wasn’t a Superman fan, but it was nice to see something of my time.
I raised my brow, staring at the little boy with black hair. Unsure what they both wanted.
“I’m Jesse.” The red haired girl spoke out proudly, sticking out her chest. “This here is Rye.”
Her voice was filled with excitement, staring at both of us back and forth with a big smile on her face. The way she gazed at us told me that she was meeting a famous movie star as she rocked on her good foot back and forth.
“Yes?” I asked, unsure what else to do. “Can I help you?”
Rye still stared, sucking on his thumb silently. Just when I was about to say something else one of the older teenagers stepped forward. He looked to be quite an athletic teen, with golden hair and rippling muscles. Even his blue t-shirt made it look like it was a bit too tight for him, and he was also wearing a jogging pants with black sneakers. At least he wasn’t as buff as Marcus, Marcus was a whole different beast altogether, David looked more like a copycat of him without the intimidation factor. He looked above average, with the same freckled face as Jesse with curly brown hair. I guess that that for some girls he would’ve been considered handsome. I wouldn’t quite know. The way he held himself told me that he was the leader of this small group that was inside this church.
“Rye’s not really the talkative type,” the familiar voice of the male that scolded Jesse when she was trying to let strangers inside, “I’m David by the way.” He took out his hand for me to shake.
Reaching over, I shook. “Alexus.” I spoke, examining him. “The one who came with me is Crystal.”
“Oh?” David glanced over towards Crystal with interest. Then he motioned with his head towards his group. “That’s my annoying little sister, Jesse. I swear she can be a handful at times. Kim, is the asian guy on the left. He and I used to go to the same school together. He’s pretty smart, though I don’t trust him jack shit with directions.”
“Hey! I’m not directionally impaired!” Kim shouted with a huff, glaring at David. He was actually taller than David, but was a bit lanky. I couldn’t quite tell which race he was from, but from the eyes, I’d guess he was Korean. He rolled his shoulders, bringing up his hands to pull on his sweater a couple of times.
“If you say so.” David shrug his shoulders. “Well, anyways. The one next to Kim is his girlfriend Maze. They been going out for six years now since middle school. Despite that…” David covered his mouth as he whispered to Alexus and Crystal, “I’m still surprised that they’ve only gotten to holding hands and even then, they’ve only kissed once or twice.” He exaggeratedly sighed, shaking his head from side-to-side.
Maze was a short petite girl with slender legs and arms. She was a bit tan, though I could tell that she wasn’t someone to mess with. If I thought Crystal was a tough girl, Maze was a step down from that, but the clothes she wore was a bit revealing on the top, making me wonder how they weren’t even past the stage of kissing. She was wearing tank top with black fishnets with black jeans.
She glanced towards me, as her eyes looking me up and down. Then, with a quick frown she looked away.
“Don’t mind her. She only likes to talk with Kim.” David waved his hand in front of him. “Our final one here is Abbie, she’s the only adult here. She’s been really helpful, and she has been the one that’s keeping us all healthy to this day. She’s a nurse by the way.”
“It’s my job.” Abbie spoke, she crossed her hand in front of her as she glanced towards our direction. “It’s what I do best.”
“Anyways, you can say Rye doesn’t have a parent. Ever since they died, Abbie decided to take care of him.”
I was a bit taken aback. For someone so young to have nobody out in this demon infested world wasn’t easy, but I couldn’t help think that Rye was lucky to find this group. The chances of him surviving outside was really low.
“How long have you guys been living here?” I asked, examining around, I could tell that they had made this whole church their base.
Long chairs were pushed to the side, near the windows and the doors, creating their own blockage. Even the podium was pushed against the front door, slanted. There were even quite a few mattresses spread out throughout the whole place, segregated together into their own little space.
Clothes were hanging on the lines, and empty cans were opened up and put left near the doors. I suspected that they were using them for trip wires. There were even boxes of open packages that were stacked up on one side of the room with portable frying pans, pots, spoons, and any other kitchen utensil in another.
The place was a bit messy, but their own little areas were kept clean. It wasn’t too bad, though they seemed to be living it quite well out here. None of them look malnourished at all.
“One year, six months, and seven days.” David replied, he sighed. “After the city fell, it was literally hell on Earth.”
“What?” I snapped towards him, surprised in what he had said. “Can you explain?”
“You don’t know?” David was confused. The thought of us not knowing something this important was something that everyone knew.
“Well, there have been a few complications.” I rolled my hand in front of me, unsure if I should tell him that we were sleeping for over one hundred and fifty years to be exact. It could sound a bit to fantastical for them, but the demons roaming around the city streets was fantastical enough.
“You…can say something like that.” I glanced towards Crystal, hoping that she would play along. She instantly caught on, and gave me a small nod.
“That sucks man.” David frowned, “I had a concussion once three years ago and I had a short term amnesia too for a while. It wasn’t pretty, but it eventually came back.”
“Yea.” I lied, knowing full well that it was better to just play along. There was no way I had amnesia, but this was the closest thing to it without explaining everything. “I woke up near Seventh Sanctum, and wasn’t sure what we been doing for the past years. All I remember was that Crystal and I was part of a team and the rest was history.”
David wasn’t completely believing in our story, but he slowly shook his head. “Have a seat, It’s going to be a long story. Trust me.” He turned around and went to pick out a couple of chairs. The others followed along, making their way to get comfortable. The kids followed closely behind, still gaping at us with excitement.
“Have you killed a monster before?” Jesse asked excitedly at Crystal. “The ones outside are monsters that died, trying to get inside. They were angry and have tried many times to break in, but every time they failed.” She chuckled, grinning at the thought. “I swear that God is here protecting us.”
Crystal wasn’t sure how to respond and stay silent, listening Jesse’s excited chatter.
Everyone sat down, even I pulled a chair over, making myself comfortable.
“Jesse, leave her alone and come sit over here.” David called out to her, motioning her to sit next to him.
“But-” Jesse wasn’t happy with the order that David gave. She glanced back towards Crystal as if she could help her in some way and back at David with a frown. “I’m not going to bother her. I was just going to ask a question.”
“Exactly, that’s bothering her. We got a lot more important things to talk about.”
Jesse scowled at her brother’s words then stomped her foot. “That’s not fair!”
“Nothing is fair, come sit here now.”
“Jesse.” David voice was stern, he reprimanded her from her outburst.
“Fine.” She let out an exaggerated sigh as she rolled her eyes. With an angry stomp, she walked towards him and sat down next to him on the floor. She blew out air, pushing away the stray hair that was on her hair.
“Now, as I was saying.” David spoke, “I swear, I can remember it as if it was yesterday.” He replied, with a heavy sigh.
The room felt heavy, almost to the point where it made me unease. Whatever was eating David’s mind was affecting everyone else around him as they uniformly got depressed or saddened by the event of their old memory.
“We lost a lot people that day.” David finally got the will to speak. He took a deep breath and continued on with his story. “It was like any other day. I remember that night specifically because of the unusual moon that night. The Blood moon. It was just so mesmerizingly beautiful as it glowed overhead in the night sky.”
I shifted a bit forward, leaning in to hear his story.
“You wouldn’t normally forget such an unusual night, but it all happened when the clock struck 3 A.M in the morning. A loud sound echoed throughout the whole city, waking everybody up in the vicinity. We all didn’t think much of it, mostly because hearing loud sounds in Chicago was a normal thing. At first it wasn’t so bad. The first sound wasn’t even as bad as the second, but as it kept going, it kept getting louder and louder, until it began to shake the very wall.”
I couldn’t help but think it was some earthquake, but from the looks of David’s expression, I could tell that it wasn’t.
“People panicked, as they began streaming out of their homes for the fear of an earthquake. The ground began to shake itself, as people started freaking out. Even I rushed out with my family in fear at what was going on and when we all stepped out…..” David voice became muted as his face dropped into a low scowl. Even his hand in front of him wrapped tightly together as he clenched tight. “Was the day the monsters came pouring out into the city.”
“Demons?” I asked.
“Yes.” David shuddered. It wasn’t just one, but many. His eyes darkened. “There were two main ones that I remember that was powerful. One was a giant monster that terrorized the city itself, like Godzilla you see on T.V. What was worse was that it created its own offspring by the flesh of its own skin.” He blanched. “Those bastards would pop out of its pimply skin like a teenager popping its own zits.”
I cringed. His description was highly descriptive that it was hard not to imagine it.
“At first, we all thought it was some kind of freak show, an illusion, but when people started dying it was a different story. They weren’t just one, or two, but hundreds, possibly even thousands, killing every human that it would see. The big one would hop around and destroy its city, bringing chaos.” Said David, “The second one was a bit strange, it….no a she would just stay in one spot unmoving for hours until she would send one large powerful attack, smoldering the area around her into oblivion. I thought the giant frog looking demon was bad enough, but she made it worse. Whoever was dead was resurrected into her minions, almost like a damn zombie apocalypse.”
My eyes became wide as my gripped tightened. Hearing about what had happened in the past made me realize that both Crystal and I was lucky to be alive. I wasn’t even sure if we could fight off such demons without being swamped. Not only that it was just two demons that wreck havoc the whole of Chicago.
“It’s Gluttony and Sloth.” Crystal spoke in a soft tone that I almost missed it.
“Excuse me?” David asked a bit confused.
“It’s their names.” She replied. “It’s what we call them.”
“Yea.” said David. “Just like the seven deadly sins. Funny thing is they would do exactly what their name describes.”
“Yea, they do.”
“Anyways, the strange thing was they were heading straight towards Seventh Sanctum.”
“I’m sorry?” Crystal and I was confused, for both of them to come again to Seventh Sanctum again was something that rarely happened. The first time they did it, they caused chaos and destruction. Now, the second time, the same thing happened, but worser on a grander scale. “What exactly do you mean?”
“Well, that’s the thing. Both of them stopped in front of Seventh Sanctum and ripped the whole building apart. All the other buildings they destroyed out of what seemed like senseless enjoyment but with Seventh Sanctum, I had a feeling that they were searching for something.”
“I don’t know.” David shrugged his shoulders, “It could be anything, but right after three-fourths of the building was pushed aside, and Seventh Sanctum completely destroyed, and people dying everywhere, a miracle happened.”
David’s group brightened at his words, their eyes started to glisten at the prospect of what he would say next.
“What kind of miracle?” Crystal asked, but I got the feeling that she knew what he would say next. It was on her expression, the other people might not know it, but I on the other hand could tell. The way her eyes brightened up and one of her brow slightly lift up, and even the way she always seem to slightly smile. It wasn’t the usual smile that makes her eyes squint like rainbows, but a sly kind of smile that gave her a sense of arrogance.
“The Ouroboros.” Silence followed after, David was locking eyes with Crystal, stressing each words. “They fought the demons back.”
Suddenly, a slew of voices were spoken out at once.
“It was so cool!” Jesse shouted in excitement, bouncing up and down on her butt. “They like used some kind of special powers to harm them!”
“Yea. Yea.” Rye was nodding furiously, while suckling on his thumb.
“They went like whoosh! Bam! Wham!” Jesse motioned her hands in front of her wildly as she made impact with her fist against her palm. Rye was following her motion. “Then they were like spewing out thunderbolts, blowing crazy fire, and and and many more!” Her grin became wide as she chattered as fast as possible.
“Well, I wouldn’t put it as some kind of superpower.” Kim stated, shaking his head towards Jesse. “It’s all scientific. They had flame throwers or some kind of new technology.” He stated, not believing in the word of magic. “Plus, they were shooting guns like the cops. Just, they had some kind of plasma gun or something.”
“Yea right.” Jessie rolled her eyes, placing her hand on her hips. “You know better than I that they were something else going on. The cop’s bullets weren’t even phasing them, and the one’s that they Ouroboros was shooting looked the same kind.”
“Oh, please. That’s all just hocus pocus.” Kim waved his hand in front of him not completely believing her.
“Then how is it possible to see the demon’s throwing their energy ball at the barrier!” Jesse frowned at his words, “it’s like saying that what you see outside isn’t magic and its all in your head!”
“Like I said, it’s science. Everything in this world can be explained.”
“No, it can’t.”
“Yes, it can.”
“Yes. Why am I arguing with a kid?” Kim rolled his eyes at her.
“You just stupid that’s why.”
Just when Kim was about to say something back, David raised his hand to stop them. “Enough.” He stressed the words, glaring at both of them to be quiet. “It doesn’t matter if they can be proven or not. What’s most important is that they killed demons and even pushed back them back. Without them, we wouldn’t have made it alive to this day. Actually, the whole of Chicago would’ve been completely destroyed if it wasn’t for them.”
“Agreed.” Kim replied, nodding his head as he leaned backwards, letting Maze sit on his laps.
“As I was saying, the Ouroboros was able to push back Gluttony and Sloth back to the lakes, though many had died from doing this.” A sorrowful tone was erupted on David’s voice. “Those two demons were bent on destroying the Ouroboros, it was as if it was their agenda to see them dead.”
I thought over what he had said. To see so many people die to push back and save many civilians was something that all the Ouroboros understood and knew. It was almost second nature to fight against the demon, but at the same time, the chance of them just waking up like us could be a high possibility, though I hoped to God that was not the case.
“By the way, did you see a buff Russian guy with a bald head in that fight?” I asked, hoping that we could get some answers.
“Bald Russian guy?”
“Or maybe a black male with dreads and some angel demon tattoos? A long silver hair pretty boy? Or maybe a geeky looking hispanic male that complains about everything?” I know I was overloading him with description, but I wanted to know who woke up and fought back.
“The bald guy!? I know him!” Jesse was bouncing on her butt, raising her hand over her head as if it was school. “I know. I know.”
“Yes!” Jesse nodded her head furiously, she lowered her hand and a big smile lifted on her face. “He’s the one that saved me from being crushed by the giant frog man!”
“He saved you?”
“Yep.” She stated it proudly as if it was a badge of honor. “Not only that, he was the one that helped us fortify this building. Though, now that I think about it….there were a couple of people that put up some kind of scribbles on the wall.”
“Where exactly would that be?” Crystal asked, “Do you mind showing it to me?”
“Absolutely.” Jesse bolted up onto her feet, then she scurried towards the place the back of the church where dim light lit up the place with lanterns. Crystal followed after her, though I stay with David. I wanted more information, especially on what happened next.
“So, did the demons find what they were looking for?” I asked.
“I’m not sure…..but, I believe that they did.”
“How are you so sure?”
“Well, after a good two-third of the Ouroboros were swatted around like flies and slain, they fat ugly one had someone in its hand. Now that I think about it, the one it had in its hand wasn’t slain, it was kidnapped.”
“Wait? What?” I was confused, demon’s don’t usually take hostages, they usually invade into a body and stay there. “It had someone in its hands? Can you describe him or her?”
David rubbed his fingers, trying to think about what I had asked for. He bite his lower lips and sighed, shaking his head. “It was too fast and I was running for my life. We all were.”
“I understand,” Usually, people who were on a flight or fight response, didn’t remember everything, especially when getting away from danger. I knew this to well, but to hear that so many Ouroboros died sadden my heart. They were friends, acquaintances, people that I actually considered as family. It made me angry that the demons had taken away those people, I knew that I would never see them again and it bothered me immensely.
Crystal finally came back with Jesse, who seem to giddy with excitement that she had a hard time in keeping Jesse back. “It’s Timothy alright.”
“It is?” I was thrilled to learn that Timothy was possibly alive.
“Yes,” Crystal replied. “I’d remember those stupid scribbles anywhere.”
I turned towards David, “It seems our friend has been with you guys and even put a charm on this building.”
David slowly nodded, “Yes, but they were only with us for a short amount of time. They were able to set up whatever they were doing, and had to left in a hurry to fight back the demons.”
“By any chance, do you know where exactly they headed off after they finished off the fight?”
“No, all I know is that they went south.”
“Yea, towards the-”
Boom! Something went off, causing the whole church to shake. We all froze, looking towards the entrance door.
“Shit.” Crystal replied, frowning. “This is not good.”