Original Stories Fan Fiction ❯ VIRUS ❯ To Hell ( Chapter 7 )
[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]
By: Melissa Norvell
Chapter 7: To Hell
"My feet hurt," Pippin hung her head and drug her feet across the barren grounds of Versailles. "How long have we been walking?" The journey to Drumrart Flatts seemed as if it was taking forever and their walk was endless with no resting points to be thought of.
"For a while now," Seishira answered the weary girl's question. "We probably should rest. Besides, we're coming to a dangerous part of the land."
"Why is it dangerous?" Rosario was a little afraid of what the sorceress would say to her in regards to the subject.
"This is Drumrart Flatts, isn't it?" Bunmei inquired as they came to a stop and gazed into the darkness. They faintly saw what looked like a thin layer of land with many holes, pitch black against the deep purple sky. It didn't look safe to walk on, like the aged floors of an abandoned house, just waiting to cave in under their next unsuspecting victim's feet.
"Yes," Seishira confirmed his inquiry.
"Drumrart Flatts? What is that place?" The pink-haired girl had the feeling, deep in her heart, that there should be something she should be worrying about but secretly hoped that she was wrong. However, she could not ignore the treacherous landscape before her.
"We're about to come upon it. It's an area of land in Versailles that people call The Underworld Drop."
"Why is it called that?" Pippin looked up to the mage in question.
"The land is composed of jagged walkways around large erosion holes in the land. The walkways are thin and not all of them continue on. It's very dark and many have fallen and were consumed by the darkness. They say that the Drumrart Flatts are considered a gateway to the pits of hell."
The very explanation sent chills up and down the white-haired girl's spine. She shuttered at the thought of falling straight to hell.
"That's scary. I wonder if it's true," Pippin looked a little freaked out.
"It's probably just some old wives' tale that was concocted in order to scare you," Bunmei sighed as they walked a little further to the beginning of one of the treacherous walkways. Shock came over the school girl's face as she saw how vast and frail the land seemed to be. From what she could see through the holes, there was very little land beneath their feet if they went in certain areas and that land looked as if it could give way at the slightest touch.
"Wow!" Her eyes widened in awe. "There are so many big holes. It looks dangerous. Are you sure we're able to walk in that?"
"Do you see a better way to get across?" The assassin shot sarcastically. He knew the extent of the Flatts, and this was an obstacle that could only be tackled by going directly through it.
"Could we go over it with magic?" To Pazusu, that was the safest way to go.
"Drumrart Flatts is too massive. I'd run out of magic and we'd fall to our deaths," Seishira informed.
"Teleporting would be out of the question," Bunmei commented on using magical tactics to get through the Flatts.
"Too unpredictable. We may land on a weak piece of land and fall through," the mage agreed.
"Are you sure there's no other way to get to the other side of Versailles?" Pazusu asked. He really didn't want to chance walking through that place but if they had to then he had no other choice.
"Drumrart Flatts surrounds a good part of Versailles, so fat chance," Bunmei folded his arms over his chest and closed his eyes.
"So, we have to go, right?" Rosario looked to the other members of her group for a solution.
"Might as well start walking, since haste makes waste, and all that good stuff," the swordsman knew that Bunmei was getting a little apprehensive over everyone's indecisiveness, so he pressed them to advance.
Everyone agreed and began to walk forward, ready to face whatever dangers lied ahead of them. Only after they had taken a few steps did they hear Seishira's voice command them to stop in a strong tone. They froze in place figuring that if Seishira was telling them to stop in such a tone, that they had better not dare to move another millimeter or something horrible may happen.
"What?" Pazusu half-turned and glanced over his shoulder at her.
"I'll lead the way. I can tell you where not to walk," the mage decided that they'd be out of the most danger if they stuck by her side. She held out her staff, which glowed a milky, golden color and walked ahead of the group.
From a distance away, Freya and her horde of bounty hunters examined the group as they made their way into Drumrart Flatts. She placed a hand under her chin in deep contemplation. 'So, they are going into the Drumrart Flatts area. Well, I'll have a little surprise for them. Soon, I'll plunge them into the depths of hell.' She turned to the bounty hunters that stood behind her gave her orders. "Well men, there they are. What do you say we go and get them?"
"That's Drumrart Flatts they're walking on, isn't it?" The question was asked in a shaky voice. They really weren't too keen on walking on that piece of land.
"Yes, the infamous Underworld Drop. If there's a chance to kill them it would be now." At least, the scenery would suggest that they could die a number of ways. That was what she was aiming for.
"But, Madam Freya, what do we do about the other three?" A female hunter spoke up. It was their main goal to get the assassin himself, but his team mates posed a problem.
"Hmm…" The green-haired woman looked thoughtful for a moment before she gave further instructions. "I've never seem them in Versailles, well, except Pazusu. I wonder why they are traveling with an assassin. Oh well, it doesn't matter. Kill them all. Throw them off Drumrart if you have to, as long as you bring his head to me, then I really don't care."
"Yes, Madam Freya!" They all sounded in unison as they took off.
"Be sure to stick close to me," Seishira glanced over her shoulder to see that Rosario had been walking close to the edge. The girl glanced over the side of one of the drops and peered into the darkness.
"You can't see anything down there."
"No kidding," Pippin placed her hands on her knees and glanced over the edge with her. "I definitely don't want to fall in there."
"Well then, maybe you shouldn't walk so close to the edge," Bunmei reminded them of the weakened structure of the land. Pippin ran to the mage and stuck close by her.
"No thanks. I mean, I can see but I don't want to risk it," Pippin said as she clung to the mage's black dress for comfort.
"I can see why they said that you can fall straight to hell. I believe it," Rosario walked over towards the middle of the path.
Bunmei bent over and picked up a rock, chunking it into one of the holes as the group stopped to listen for any kind of contact that the rock could have made. A long silence overcame them as each one wondered when the rock would hit the ground. The silence stretched from five to twenty minutes as they still heard nothing. Then they all felt a bead of sweat run down the backs of their heads.
"I don't hear anything," Rosario finally spoke up, breaking the silence.
"Damn, it does seem endless," the assassin commented, after he was sure that nothing had hit the ground.
"I hear something," Pazusu said quickly as a rustling sound was made and everyone turned to glance directly behind them.
"What's that?" Rosario's waves of pink slammed into the side of her face with the force of her turn.
"Damned bounty hunters," Bunmei was sure that they had returned and had the feeling that they had been following him for a while.
"What did you do to them?" There was obviously a reason that Bunmei was wanted by them and Pazusu wanted to know before they all got into his situation simply by being with him.
"Besides kill a few off, nothing really. They just want the huge bounty on my head," the assassin tossed a piece of sepia colored paper that had been rolled up like a scroll to him.
Pazusu opened the scroll to see a portrait of the man with a huge amount of money posted under it. So large of a sum, in fact, that his eyes nearly bulged out of his head. "What the hell!?"
"They don't call me infamous for nothing," Bunmei smirked as one of the bounty hunters appeared behind him.
Thinking quickly, out of reflexive instinct more than anything else, Rosario flung one of her throwing knives at the man clad in black. It hit him in the arm and caused the hunter to grab the injury and call out in pain.
The assassin's dark eyebrow twitched in irritation. "I was going to get that one."
"You got him! Great job Rosario!" Pippin cheered.
"Thanks," Rosario smiled weakly at the young girl. She didn't want to hurt anyone but she didn't want Bunmei to get hurt. She had been shaken up since she had murdered those bounty hunters and as hard as the girl tried to hide her tears and dismay, it really bothered her. It ate at her soul like a painful guilt that kept growing and growing. Soon, it would consume her.
"Wherever that one is, there's got to be more," Pazusu grabbed his scythe, ready to battle whatever came his way. As soon as he did, he was rushed at by two of them. The skilled swordsman brought his scythe around to clash with the sword of the bounty hunter and the two began to engage in an intense sword fight as each sound of metal clashing grew more repetitive.
Meanwhile, the wounded hunter who had been stabbed by Rosario's throwing knife pulled the piercing object from his shoulder and threw it towards Pazusu, who barely saw it out of the corner of his eye and dodged. The knife managed to make a slice on his bicep that ripped his pristine shirt as a few drops of blood clung to it.
"Damn it," he jumped back and landed on a piece of land that began to crumble beneath his feet. He then jumped from that spot with a surprised look on his face. "Shit!" The swordsman cursed again. 'I forgot about the weak spots in the land. I'd better be careful.' While it was good for him to concentrate on the battle, the landscape was also an important factor.
Three bounty hunters rushed at Bunmei, who slashed his sword across his vision, the magic from his blade produced rose petals that shot out with quick speed and cut them. Several yells, grunts and groans were heard as they bent over and held their wounds in pain.
Another hunter was on him as they jumped up and brought down their blade, attempting to end his life by splitting him down the middle but the skillful man evaded his attack by jumping out of the way. The hunter's blade stuck into the ground.
Bunmei landed a few feet back as another hunter tried to take out his ribcage, but he quickly blocked it with his sword.
"My, you're perceptive," the bounty hunters voice slithered through his ears.
"It's all in the occupation."
"Soon, we shall have your head."
"Sorry, I don't feel like dying today," the spiky-haired assassin pushed through their blade with his own. Attempting to cut them in half, but they were too fast. The only thing his blade cut was an after image.
'Damn, now where did he go?' Golden eyes glanced around as he saw nothing. Then Bunmei turned around quickly as he heard something cutting the air, only to find that two shurikens the size of dinner plates heading towards him. He leapt into the air as the two weapons dug into the ground where he had once stood. The ground broke as the weapons fell into the darkness.
The mirrors on Seishira's staff, as well as the ones that she wore atop of her head flashed as she opened her dull blue eyes and uttered the word 'shatter'. The skies around her shattered like glass and the pieces flew at the bounty hunters who plagued her with their presence, stabbing them and ending their lives with a violent scream.
"Whoo hoo! Go Seishira!" Pippin cheered from her position beside of Rosario. She wanted to stay back and protect her friend.
"Thank you," Rosario nodded.
"My pleasure," the mage glanced over her shoulder at the two. "Please watch your back Miss Rosario."
Sword and scythe clashed over and over as Pazusu bravely fought against the lone bounty hunter who had tried to stab him with the throwing knife. The two went back and forth and began to move towards a nearby ledge that stuck out far before it dropped off into the darkness.
"Pazusu!" Pippin shouted at her brother trying to warn him.
The swordsman swung his massive weapon around, but the move left him wide open as the enemy ran up and attempted to kick him in the face. Pazusu quickly slammed his weapon down as it cracked the ground below the both of them. The ninja tried to grab something to keep from falling but only managed to grab the scythe, which cut his hands as he tried to keep hold but his bloody hands slid off and he fell into the darkness of the Underworld Drop.
"Well…There goes one of them."
Freya saw the progress of her minions fight and a look of anger crossed her face. She clenched her hand. "Idiots!" She hissed. "I'll just have to do this myself," the woman pulled out a short sword, ready to engage in battle.
"Rah!" Pazusu swung his scythe around as the tip of it was rammed into one of the enemies' stomachs. Bunmei cut one of them across the chest and Seishira quickly got in between Pippin and Rosario to blast a couple of them away with her weapon.
Rosario looked crestfallen and sighed to herself. She didn't like the violence or the death and only wished to go back to Japan. Suddenly, a bounty hunter appeared behind her and drew his sword, promising death before Bunmei rushed over and sliced them across the back, ending their life as their body fell to the ground with a thump.
The assassin glanced over his shoulder as his steely, golden eyes pierced the girl's fragile soul. "What's wrong? Did you lose all of your weapons?"
"I don't want to be the one who is always protected," she said lowly. Rosario didn't want to kill anyone, but she didn't want her friends out there risking their lives while she stood around and did nothing. It was wrong that they had to go out on a limb to protect her and the two sides of her mind waged war on each other as she scrambled to find an answer to her questions.
"Then you'd better toughen up, otherwise, you'll die," his words were cutting and truthful as he turned to look at the girl but was caught off guard as he was tackled to the ground by Freya, who had rushed out from her hiding spot to ambush him.
The two slid across the blackened ground and stopped at the ledge where Bunmei's head hung over the edge, teetering on the brink of death. His sword, which had been knocked out of his hands by the force of the blow, landed on the ground near Rosario.
Freya's hands gripped his neck tightly as the green-haired woman chocked him with a psychotic smirk on her face.
"I will kill you," her words were a promise more than a threat.
"Son of a…What the…You must have caught me off guard." Bunmei's voice was strained as he tried to talk with the restriction on his throat.
"I'll push you right off of the Underworld Drop and claim my bounty."
"Too bad you have to have something to show for it," Bunmei closed one eye with a satisfied smirk that was short-lived as the woman reached forwards and ripped off his frilly necktie.
"Bunmei!" Pazusu shot as all eyes were fixated on the cliff where the two hung.
"What do we do?" Pippin produced a worried expression, nearly on the verge of tears. "If they make one more move, he'll die!"
Thinking quickly, Rosario ran towards the sword that had been knocked out of the assassin's hands and grabbed it.
"What is she doing?" Seishira's question came out quickly as she whirled around to see what the girl was up to.
"Rosario! Stay back!" Pazusu warned. The situation was far too dangerous for her to intervene and if she dared to, then she would surely suffer the same fate as the assassin and the bounty hunter.
"I'm not just going to let him die," Rosario said with strength and fortitude as she charged at them both with the heavy object. "I might just be a normal girl compared to everyone else…but for once…I want to be the savior and not the victim." It didn't matter to her at that moment in time, if she would have to stain her hands in blood again or not. She wanted to save Bunmei's life and that mattered far more to her than her guilt.
"What?" Freya heard the light footsteps nearing her and glanced over her shoulder to see the girl senselessly charging with a weapon in her hands that she would, no doubt, have poor control over. "Stupid girl."
The skillful woman moved to the side as the girl stepped onto the tip of the land, which broke under their combined weight. As she felt herself become weightless and saw the pieces of land rise up around her, Rosario's eyes widened in horror. She felt a strong arm wrap around her as she smelled the familiar scent of roses and cologne as Bunmei attempted to save them both as he jumped towards another piece of land, which was also weak and broke through as the two of them fell.
They could both see the shocked and dismayed expressions on their team mates as they sank beneath the landscape.
"Bunmei! Rosario!" Everyone called out.
'I need something to prove that I executed him, and that girl has the sword.' Freya thought as her thoughts rushed around wildly in her head. Bunmei was right; the frilly neck tie that she had acquired had fallen into the darkness.
The woman lunged forward and reached for Rosario's arms as she grabbed her and struggled to take the sword away as they both jolted to a stop. Bunmei grabbed one of the jagged edges of the cliff to keep from falling.
"Let go!" Rosario yelled as she continued to struggle violently against the woman's grasp.
"I don't think so! I'm not falling to my death and I want that sword!" Freya kept trying to pry the girl's arms open, but she couldn't get leverage from dangling in the air.
"I'll never give it up to you."
"Don't worry about the damned sword!" Bunmei yelled at both of them in irritation as his swayed around from their movement and struggled to hold onto the cliff and keep the girl in his arm at the same time. "How about worrying about your damned lives!"
Freya ignored his words and disregarded the fact that he was the only one keeping them from plummeting to whatever fate awaited them in the darkness. She pulled out a knife and drew it back. She would have that sword, one way or another. "Die!"
"No!" Rosario looked horrified at the presented danger. Not only could she not get Freya off of her, she couldn't move to dodge her attack. She kicked the bounty hunter, who let go with a shock, and released the knife but she then grabbed on to the girl's legs to save herself from falling.
"Damn it!" Freya cursed as she tried to keep Rosario from squirming around.
"Get off!" The helpless girl kept trying to kick her off, but nothing was working. She didn't have the strength to get Freya away.
Bunmei saw the elaborate end of Seishira's staff as his image was reflected in the many mirrors.
"Here, grab this," Seishira instructed as he latched into the base of the staff and the three of them were pulled up. As they were lifted to safety, Rosario finally kicked the curly-haired woman off, who fell a short distance before she grabbed onto the land and pulled herself up.
"Thanks, Seishira," the assassin was grateful that she got him out of that pain in the ass situation.
"Not a problem, but you should worry about her," Seishira glanced towards Freya, who was standing; ready to finish what they had started.
"Who the hell are you anyway?" The black-haired man inquired as he turned around to face his enemy.
"I'm a master bounty hunter. My name is Roche Freya and I'm here for the head of the infamous Black Rose Assassin. If I bring back proof of his slaughter I will have my wish," she informed everyone her goal.
"You're just like any other bounty hunter," he had encountered that answer several times before from countless, faceless hunters. What made her any different? "What makes you think I'm just going to let you kill me? I'm on a mission. I don't have time for you."
"Running away, are we?" Freya was amused by his response.
"Are you kidding?" Bunmei smirked. "I never run from anyone."
"Then fight me right here and now. If I win, then I get to personally bring in your head," the bounty hunter challenged him as he sat Rosario down.
"If you defeat me, then I'll decapitate myself and hand you my head personally," his defeat by a mere bounty hunter would shame him enough to buckle under her demand.
"Only one rule: you can't let your little goons interfere," the assassin wanted a fair and honorable fight. He might be a killer but he abided by a personal honor code and a fight that was one-on-one was simply meant to be just that.
"The same goes for your little cohorts," Freya smiled and pointed a finger at his group of allies.
"Bunmei…" Rosario looked up at him with a worried expression. She didn't want him to get hurt.
The spiky-haired man held out his hand to her and leveled her with a stern look. "Hand me the sword."
The girl looked down at the finely polished blade and saw her sorrowed reflection as she thought about what to do. The sword looked like it meant a lot to Bunmei and he always taken very good care of it. It was his sword, but she didn't want to give it to him.
Someone would die, and she didn't want that at all.
"But…I don't want you to be hurt," She said smally, ready for his retort. Rosario knew that he wouldn't like her answer. He always rebelled against her opinion.
"Why don't you try having some faith in me instead of thinking I'm weak," he shot, with something that she didn't consider before. It shook her senses and made her think for a few moments before she handed it to him.
"Please be careful."
"Yeah, yeah…" He said nonchalantly as he took his sword from her and walked towards Freya, ready to engage in what he hoped to be their final battle.
"Are you sure that you trust her? I mean, they might jump in," Pazusu asked the assassin as he passed him.
"If they do, I'll kill them too. Besides, if you're really my allies, then you'd jump in too." That would violate the terms of their one-on-one fight. His hands would be tied. Even though they had just met, and his trust of other's wasn't the best, he would have to rely on them to back him up.
"Right," the swordsman nodded.
"Do you think he'll be okay, Miss Seishira?" Pippin wondered aloud.
"He can handle himself. We must put our faith in him if we want him to win or at least come out alive," the mage told her. True, they knew next to nothing about the assassin but up until now, he had done more than live up to their expectations of him. There was no arguing the fact that he was a skilled fighter and tough to the core.
Pippin nodded with a smile. "Right, he probably knows more about being in this situation than any of us, aside from my brother."
"Alright, Black Rose Assassin, let's get this started," Freya smiled wickedly as her adrenalin pumped in her body. This was it! This would surely be her final fight with the man who held the answer to all of her problems.
The one who would make her dreams come true.
"My pleasure," Bunmei got into a fighting position with his sword. "Let's get this problem over with." The assassin charged at the bounty hunter. Hopefully this would be her last fight and if he had anything to do with it, he'd make sure that she was the one who would be flung from the Underworld Drop.
…To Be Continued…