Alexus sighed, leaning back as he tried to figure out the daily schedule for the team. He spun around a few times, trying to relax, but his mind wouldn’t allow him to stop.
Seventh Sanctum had become a mess.
One year has passed since the disappearance of Marcus. Nobody knew where Marcus had gone. There was only an empty seat, scuffles of paper scattered all over his desk and the ground. Even the desk was cleaved in half, leaving behind broken splinters of the desk.
Alexus remembered as if it was yesterday, the day when Marcus was missing. But then, there was no news, no foul play, or demon magic that was left.
It was a complete mystery what had happened there.
There were numerous rumors that he was killed or spirited away by a demon. Others have stated that Gerald killed him, so he could take the place of the Seventh Sanctum.
Alexus honestly couldn’t help but want to believe such a rumor, but he didn’t have any proof, so
he had looked high and low to find any.
Timothy scored through the database for hints through the computer or the camera, but nothing.
Jones and Alexus had personally gone out in the fields to find other clues in the surrounding area, but still nothing.
On the other hand, Crystal went silent for a few months, searching high and low. All of them had searched endlessly for clues on Marcus’s whereabouts. They had all hoped that he would come back, but days became weeks, turning into months. There were no signs, leaving them all clueless.
The first to put aside the search was Timothy, followed by Jones and eventually Crystal as time passed into the year.
Today marked a full year and eleven days. Alexus placed the piled-up paper, closing it as he got up.
He was tired of overthinking things and needed his brain to rest. Alexus reached over, grabbing his jacket as he walked out the door and headed outside Seventh Sanctum.
People were busily working, moving large trunks of new tech they had raided from another factory that was one hour away. They were able to bring back much.
A cool autumn breeze hit him, bringing with it a slight chill. Loud crunches of leaves under his boots crackled as he walked out. His nose tingled, but he enjoyed every minute of it.
The summertime wasn’t his favorite, especially this last month when the summer heat was killing him. So he thought he would roast underneath the sunlight from that sunlight.
Timothy had stated that the sun had intensified since last year, to which Alexus agreed.
However, there was a huge difference in the heat for the past year that bled over towards fall. It wasn’t until yesterday did they all feel a cool winter chill blow in, allowing them to change clothing.
Birds chirped in the afternoon, telling Alexus that today would be another normal day. Usually, when the demons attacked, the birds went silent, disappearing into the trees.
Even the insects would go silent, bringing with an eerie silence. He had many instances, which allowed him to watch out for such instances numerous times.
“Alexus!” Crystal’s voice rang out from behind him.
Alexus turned around; a smile bubbled out of his lips as he gazed softly at her.
Crystal ran into his arms, glomping onto him. Alexus couldn’t help himself as his arm completely wrapped around her body. Her lovely sweet scent tickled his nose as he breathed in her deeply. A sigh escaped from his lips as he couldn’t help but feel more at ease with her presence.
These days, just being around her and a simple hug has helped calm his mind. So many things crossed his mind while Gerald was busy taking over the whole Seventh Sanctum overnight.
It had become unbearable at times.
“What are you doing out here?” Alexus asked; he scanned her over, making sure she was okay.
“I was looking for you.”
“Really? Why?” Alexus asked; he pulled himself away. Their relationship had grown
considerably well, making them closer than before.
“Oh.” Alexus’ voice dropped. Whenever he heard Gerald’s name, he couldn’t help but have an internal scream in his mind.
“He has been looking for you.”
“Why?” Alexus asked, annoyed. He didn’t realize he was pulling Crystal in.
“The usual, wanting to know if we found anything about Marcus and the updates on the team’s next mission.”
“That bastard is not giving us a rest,” Alexus growled. Timothy and Alexus were the only ones with the power of Legendary class power, while the rest were compromised by tier Ouroboros.
“Yea, he wants us to go out on another mission to gather some batteries we are running out of. Right now, the factory we would need to raid is composed of multiple high-level demons.”
“Did he not send out other Ouroboros for this job?”
Crystal sighed, nodding. “She did, but it wasn’t enough. Five were killed, and the rest barely escaped and were injured.”
“Timothy and Jones are not going to like this.”
“I agree.” Crystal replied, “I’m already hearing a mouthful from Timothy about how he is being overworked both monster hunting and tech development.”
“I would too,” said Alexus. After Marcus went missing, Timothy drowned himself in his work, creating new ways to detect demons. Then, barely coming out of his room, he searched the web for something he didn’t know.
“Timothy and Jones won’t listen to Gerald,” Crystal stated, “That’s why he’s calling for you.”
Alexus rolled his eyes; for some reason, he was dubbed the leader after Marcus was gone. But, he didn’t mind as he always stood in place until Marcus returned. Holding everything just the way it was.
“You know just as well as I that we all hate working for him.”
“Yep, and we all say no, but you.”
Alexus twitched. He sighed, “I know.” His shoulder slumped. “Every mission, I hope we get a clue of Marcus’ whereabouts.”
“I understand. We all knew that was the only reason you chose to do those dangerous missions with the others, plus a quarter of the Seventh Sanctum is basically Timothy, Jones, me, and you.”
Alexus chuckled. He agreed. The amount of power they have accumulated from going out into the field and having Timothy and Crystal constantly tweaking and upgrading their suits had far outstretched the other Ouroboros. It wasn’t that they weren’t sharing their technology or power; they were constantly thrown into dangerous situations and needed every edge they could to come back alive.
There were too many times that they were injured.
“I think it’s time for us to stop going into these trifling missions. Marcus is gone.”
“He’s not; something happened. But you know just as much as I do, that wasn’t normal.”
“I agree, but we have to focus. The other deadly sins are out there, and we must kill them all. This is our priority; Marcus will understand this.”
Alexus felt a twist in his gut. What she said was true. Marcus would not have wanted this. It took a moment for him to realize what he was doing in the past year wasn’t moving them forward to what must be done.
“We will meet him out there one day if he is out there,” said Crystal. “I assure you, he will be fighting against those deadly sins; that was all he talked about when he was on his off times. Trying to figure out multiple ways to kill them.”
“Yes, he did.” Alexus stood up straighter, closing his eyes. He let in a deep breath and exhaled. He could feel all the pent-up worry and stress washing away. There was a job for all of them to do, and for the past year, they haven’t hunted a single Deadly Sin since Gerald’s reign.
“You’re right.” Alexus opened his eyes, turning his attention towards her. “We have a job to do, and Gerald isn’t picking up his end.”
Crystal grinned. Her eyes twinkled, staring at him with pride.
“Let’s go,” Alexus turned around, and they headed back into Seventh Sanctum. Walking through the crowd, they made their way towards Gerald’s office, which was once Marcus’.