Original Stories Fan Fiction ❯ VIRUS ❯ Deadly Temptations ( Chapter 11 )
[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]
Chapter 11: Deadly Temptations
By: Melissa Norvell/Revamp
“I'm shocked that you dared to show your face here,” Seishira commented on Sin's determination and bravery. Not only did he nearly die here, but he had the audacity to come to Majestica again, knowing that he may get assassinated at any time. At the same time, she wondered why exactly he chose to come back to a place that he knew loathed his existence.
“The rebellion is far from over. I will abolish the persecution in this town and free it from Ambaralla's chains of oppression,” he would not stop until the people of Majestica had the wool pulled from their eyes and saw the truth. If he could convince but one person that Ambaralla was the incarnation of an evil tyrant, then it meant that there was some hope for them.
“We're searching for a way to infiltrate the castle in the sky,” Kumoigi told them of their plans. Getting into that castle and defeating her themselves so that they could be the new overseers of Versailles was their prime objective.
“Have you found a way to reach it?” Pazusu inquired on the information that they could have potentially gathered. After all, they had been traveling for a long time. Who knew what type of leads they could have gotten and from whom?
“We believe that the answers lie within Majestica somewhere,” the ninja let them know one of the leads that she had gotten. It explained exactly why the duo had shown up there again. They were looking for that very thing that was rumored to be in the town where it all began.
“How did you know that?” The swordsman was a little interested on her means of obtaining such information and the validity behind it.
“There have been a few rumors around,” Kumoigi was evasive with her answer.
The assassin, who resided in his usual place, leaned up against a wall commented on the conversation at hand. “Oh yeah? Like what?” If there was something that could benefit his goals, he wanted to know what it was and how he could get his hands on it.
“There is said to be a sword that lies in Majestica. It's called the Rose Blade,” Sin finally revealed the information that his companion had been poking around at.
Pazusu arched an eyebrow. “What does it do?”
“The Rose Blade exists somewhere in Majestica. It's speculated that it lies beneath the execution grounds, but we have no true confirmation on that,” the female ninja educated them. They had come back to check the validity of such a claim.
“So what are you going to do? Dig up that place?” Bunmei had a bad feeling about this. Something deep down inside of his being told him that he was going to find himself in the very place he dreaded going. Just great. This was wonderful. It was just what he didn't want to do.
“Going there is begging to be executed again,” Sin's comment on it showed that his feelings matched the assassin's view on the sword's possible location, but for different reasons entirely. Both of them didn't exactly have the best memories of execution grounds.
“The sword is made of metal, right? So, couldn't you use a metal detector or something?” Pazusu thought that it was a pretty good idea. They could go and buy a metal detector in the market place and bring it back to the execution grounds. It would take far less time that way. They wouldn't risk as much at getting caught at doing it.
“That's tedious,” Sin shot him down.
“Besides, there are a lot of metal objects in and around the execution grounds. That could take forever,” Kumoigi agreed with him. Who wanted to go and scan an entire field with a device and dig up every single metal object they found? Not her, and the group would get tired of their disappointing finds.
“The sage is the only one who truly knew of the Rose Sword's location,” Seishira noted that getting proper information that was not twisted in some way was going to be hard. The sage had been exiled to who knew where in Versailles, so running into him was a slim to none chance. They would sadly have to work off of rumors and speculation if they wanted to make any type of progress.
“So, this sword is going to get us to the castle?” Bunmei wanted to know more about the powers of the sword. If what they claimed was true, then he was going to seek it out more fiercely than before. It would be the key to getting to Ambaralla.
“It's supposed to be able to open a magic portal that can transport us there,” Sin was sure that this information was true, and he, like Bunmei, wanted to reach that castle more than anything else.
Seishira turned to him. “Where did you hear that?”
“A sage in town told us all about it.”
Her face instantly lit up with surprise. “Sage?” The word was questioned in such a tone that she was in awe of what she had heard. There was only one sage in all of Versailles and Oscillo combined. There was no doubt in her mind that it had to be the infamous exiled sage. `Could it be true?'
“Well, I guess we don't have much of a choice. We'll have to go to the execution grounds when no one's there. I just hope this will be worth it,” the swordsman came to the conclusion that risking it by foot and digging the whole place up was the prime motive. It was a mission that could make the whole town go against them, just because of who they were with. Not to mention that the people there didn't like Bunmei either. It was like going into a town full of police officers with three wanted fugitives in your party.
“Why would they hide a sword like that in an execution field?” The Black Rose Assassin noted on how strange of an idea that was.
“Well, when you look at it this way, no one would think to look there,” Pazusu brought up a good point. If he was searching for a magical item, he wouldn't think to strip down a killing field to find it. He would have rather picked an abandon castle or some cave or forest somewhere.
Bunmei sighed in exasperation, “I'm going to hate this.”
Pazusu patted his shoulder in reassurance and leveled him with a kind smile. “Don't worry about it too much. I can always look in the creepy places if you don't want to,” the swordsman teased, earning him a sock to the face that laid him flat out on the ground. “I'll take that as a no,” he whined, laying there sprawled out as the pain registered in his cheek and his vision swirled around.
“I don't need your help,” Bunmei's voice as stone cold as the look on his face. Pazusu wasn't going to stand there and strip away his masculinity in front of his entire party.
Kumoigi blinked, staring at the floored swordsman. “The bad thing about this plan is that there are people always around. We'll need someone to watch the parameters to make sure that no one suspects anything.” It also proved as a sentry means for the group. If they saw the citizens acting suspicious, the sentinels could report it to those looking for the sword.
“The Rose Sword puts off magic waves. We were thinking that someone in your party would be able to sense them or detect them somehow,” Sin looked over to the two magic users of the group: Seishira and Pippin.
“I'm not sure if I could assist you, since my powers are limited when it comes to the detection of magical weapons, but I could assist the best way I know how.” For her, it was harder than it looked. Seishira only had limited knowledge on such a weapon, and as far as the waves it produced, she had no idea what they would feel like or what type of magic it did create.
Pazusu glanced to his sister. “Pippin might be able to help you. She has special indicators that react to magical energy.” Surely the magic rods that hung around her face could help in their search.
“Then she can tell us if it's there,” Sin replied as Rosario and Pippin walked into the room, listening in on what exactly they were talking about.
“There she is,” Pazusu pointed to the now confused girl. Rosario was also confused. They must have been talking about Pippin, but why? What exactly did they need her for? What was going on?
“Huh? Did you want me for something?” Pippin inquired.
“Can you find magical items?” Kumoigi asked.
“Sometimes, depends on the energy. Do you want me to find something for you?”
Sin explained that there was a magical sword in the execution yard that was known as the Rose Blade. He questioned on whether or not she would be able to find a sword of such caliber in a place as dismal and littered with contraptions and artifacts from those executed as those very grounds. Kumoigi added that the weapon was underground and they couldn't go digging up the whole field, because they would become a part of it in ways they didn't wish to. Pippin beamed, she couldn't see why she couldn't try at least. Rosario, on the other hand, was worried about getting caught.
“It's not my choice either, but if it gets me up there we might as well give it a try,” Bunmei settled. This was a rare chance to achieve his dreams and freedom. The price was heavy, but facing a few memories was better than staying in this god forsaken place any longer than he had to.
The pink-haired girl's face twisted in doubt. “I don't have a good feeling-“
She was cut off by the assassin. “Do you want to get out of here and back to Osaka or not?”
“Then don't say stupid crap.”
“To make sure we're not as conspicuous we can form small groups of two or three people. This way we won't get caught or noticed as fast. There are seven people here…that's an odd number.” The mage arched an eyebrow. One of the groups would have an odd number of people. Perhaps the largest of the groups could be the one that will scour the grounds and be a type of search party.
Kumoigi looked thoughtful for a moment. “Anyone have any ideas of what exactly you want to do about our grouping situation?” She asked and gazed to her party in question. At this moment in time, anything would be helpful.
Sin was the first to speak. “Kumoigi Sol, you and the mage can come with me. I'll need a magic user and a fighter to protect me in case things get bad.”
Bunmei narrowed his eyes and crossed his arms, releasing a `hmpf' in a haughty tone. That guy didn't know what a good fighter was, but of course he would pick the one person who had been at this side this entire time. What a biased bastard.
Pazusu offered to go with him. The two of them were a really good team in battle, and he felt safe with someone like him around. Rosario offered to be with Pippin, who agreed all too happily but inquire don what their teams were going to do.
“My team will take one half of the execution grounds,” Sin pointed to Pazusu and Bunmei, who glared at him from his position. “Your team will go and take the other half. Rosario and Pippin can be our look outs and walk along the parameters.”
“That sounds like a plan,” Kumoigi put her hands on her hips with a look of determination. “What do you say?”
“Let's get it over with,” Bunmei sighed as he told everyone to get dressed and gather their weapons. They would meet in front of the execution grounds in twenty minutes. The group walked off in their separate directions to gather what they would need for a heavy excavation.
In her part of the room, Rosario put on a pink and white dress and packed severed shurikens inside of a satchel that she wore over her shoulder. Pippin watched her in the background. She didn't really need to gather anything, considering her magical indicators were all that she would ever need. She watched as her friend glanced around, in search of different things that she thought she might need if she found herself in a pinch.
`I still feel uneasy about this. I feel like it's a really bad idea to just go out there and look for a sword that we don't even know is there.' The girl was worry infused as she glanced at the tanned female, sitting a few feet from her. “Hey, Pippin?”
“What is it?” The magic user cocked her head to the side, sitting cross-legged on a futon.
“Why are you patrolling the perimeters with me? Doesn't Sin need your magic detecting powers?” That had bothered her for a while. The man said that he would need her, and then stuck her as a sentinel. Maybe he found Seishira to be a better choice? Sin seemed sort of picky with the people he stuck in certain positions.
“Maybe he thinks Seishira can do it better,” Pippin was fine with that. The mage had years of experience on her.
“Maybe he'll have you do it at first or something.” That was the only thing Rosario could think of.
The young girl shrugged. “Probably, I'm not too worried about it. As long as we find that sword so we can get to the castle. That's all that matters, right?”
Rosario could agree with that, “I guess that's a good way of looking at it.” Thank god for Pippin's optimism and cheerful nature. She didn't know what she would do without it holding her anxiety together.
Everyone gathered on a cobblestone road in front of the execution grounds. They were all clad in battle gear and faced the fields, which were wide and littered with devices of death. The dirt was void of grass, and the field smelled of a metallic, earthy scent. Rusted and old torture devices of various types hung around, creaking in the wind and gallows swayed back and forth. After what seemed like hours of silence, Kumoigi was the first to speak up.
“We're here. So what now?”
Sin turned to the two white-haired women. “Pippin, Seishira, I need to talk to you.”
The two approached him. Pippin in quandary about what he wanted from the both of them to do. Sin instructed that she scour the grounds and mark the places on the ground where she sensed magical activity. She noted that he could count on her, and with a salute she was ready to do her job. He then turned to the elder magician and instructed her to come with him. He wanted her to help and tell him whether or not the type of magic sensed by Pippin's detectors was up to par with the magic that the sword produced. Again, Seishira told him that she had never been in the vicinity of such a weapon, so she could only go on what she was told by the sage.
“You might want to check all of them if you don't know,” Bunmei commented. He didn't want to under look the situation.
“I'm trying to make it fast,” Sin argued his point. It wasn't as if they had all day to pull this operation off. They needed to quickly detect it by process of elimination and bring the sword back before the citizens noticed that it was gone.
“I'd rather be concise,” the assassin contradicted his statement. What good was it if they just half-ass did their mission?
“If you want to end up on this field, hanging from the gallows, then be my guest,” Sin turned from him and walked off with the two magic users.
“This is asinine,” Bunmei shot before his mind was assaulted with flashbacks.
Gunshots were fired and blood sprayed through the air in airbrushed format. The man and woman fell to the ground, lifeless as tears ran down a porcelain cheek.
Insisting on defying the man, golden eyes narrowed. “You only hang from the gallows if you let them get you up there.”
“Well, we'll start looking over here,” the swordsman said happily, grabbing the grumbling assassin's arm and dragging him off. Bunmei shouted a `hey' in anger but Pazusu was having none of his bullshit. He just kept dragging the kicking and cursing man along, trying to get him away from the group before anything transpired. “Come on. Time's wasting.”
“What in the hell are you doing?” The darkly-clad man protested.
“Arguing with Sin isn't going to get us that sword,” he was thinking of the team. That's what Pazusu was trying to do anyway. If an argument erupted, then it would only put a rift between them. If Sin and Kumoigi found the sword first, they would probably just go to the castle without them.
“I suppose you have a better idea?” Since he was obviously head honcho of the group and everything.
“Just go with it. I know this isn't your thing but if we can get past it, then it will benefit you,” he had to keep the antagonistic man's mind away from the problems. That was the only way that they could all work together.
“Excuse me,” a voice cut into their conversation, causing the two men to whirl around and see Rosario standing behind them with a nervous expression.
“What do you want?” Bunmei snapped.
“You can't look anywhere if Pippin doesn't have the areas marked yet.” Sweat ran down the back of the girl's head. Pazusu mimicked the action and Bunmei fell over, mumbling `idiots' under his breath.
At the field, Pippin walked in lines back and forth, making sure to cover every inch of the ground. As she walked, her indicators would occasionally spring up, pointing straight out in front of her in detection of the magical areas. Kicking the dirt, she formed an `x' shape on the ground and laid a couple of large rocks there to mark her respective spots. She could do this five times, dragging her heels across the dirt and marking each spot she came by. Moments passed as she made her last mark on the ground, then ran back to the group, making sure not to disturb the spots she marked.
“There. That's all of them.”
“Are you positive?” Sin wanted to make sure that her search was thorough.
“This is my second time going over the field, so yes. These are all of the spots that I felt strong magical forces from,” the girl gestured to the five exes drawn onto the execution grounds.
Looking over them, Kumoigi cocked her head. “So, do we dig in these places?”
“Tell me which one feels most like the sword,” Sin's purple eyes darted to the mage, who nodded and began to walk around the field. From what she knew, the Rose Blade had a strong flow of Earth Magic. Stopping at one of the spots, she noted that she believed that it felt the most similar to what she imagined the sword's power to feel. Tapping her staff on the spot marked by Pippin, Kumoigi and Sin sunk down to their hands and knees and began to frantically dig at the ground. Seishira kneeled, helping them as they dug for several minutes.
At another spot, Pazusu and Bunmei looked at each other.
“Blast it and see if it's there,” the assassin ordered. It was far quicker than merely digging.
“I could destroy the sword if I do that,” Pazusu, on the other hand, didn't quite agree with his methods. That was definitely a way of dousing their chances of every getting out of Versailles.
There went his plan. Huffing, the assassin gave in to his ways. “Fine, we'll dig for it,” he agreed as the two sunk to their knees, digging for whatever may lie under the surface of the ground.
Kumoigi uncovered what looked like a pastille jade green, glowing gem. It was ground and looked like half of a yin-yang, complete with a hole in the proper place. Holding the gem in her hand, the group gazed at it. “This isn't it.”
“It's pretty,” Pippin beamed.
“It's an Earth Stone. That would explain why I felt the earth power here,” Seishira deduced.
Bunmei lifted a giant, antique rifle from the ground. It resembled an assault rifle and it was covered in rust and moist earth. A displeased look crossed his face. “It's just someone's magic canon. What a waste of my time.” He tossed it needlessly back into the hole it came out of. A laser blaster wasn't exactly his forte.
Pazusu scratched his head before he put his hat back on. “Strange that it would be down here…these are usually found in Oscillo.”
Crossing his arms, the assassin spoke. “That just means the assholes from above can come down here.”
“So, maybe the sword is close by?” They could only hope.
“We have three more potential spots that it could be at,” Bunmei deduced.
“At least we have a confirmation that it's possible to get up there.” What comes down must go back up somehow. The only questions were how and where the structure was to get them there. Bunmei walked over to the next location and plunged his hands into the earth, digging around in hopes to find the sword.
In another location, Seishira pulled up another Earth Stone. It seemed that there were quite a bit of them around.
Bunmei pulled up an Earth Stone in his location as well. He frowned deeply. “Oh for crying out loud.”
Pazusu pulled up a necklace composed of shaped Earth Stones. “Well, there aren't any more spots to check. This place is just full of Earth Stones.”
“I had a feeling that we might encounter this problem,” Seishira looked thoughtful for a moment, trying to go over the problem in her head. “Majestica is known for its green stones. Earth powers are what mages come here to gather when they are first learning the fundamentals of the different types of basic magic.”
“This means I was lied to.” It didn't sit well with Sin. He didn't like wasting time.
“If it's not here, then where is it?” Kumoigi wondered. It was frustrating to do all of this work and not even end up with anything that was close to the sword at the end of their futile search. This meant that the sword may not have even been in Majestica at all. If that was true then they were screwed and had to search in other places. It also meant that coming here was for nothing.
“This is where all of the pointers told us to go,” Sin was sure that it was here. Sometimes, rumors were just rumors it seemed.
“In other words, all you knew was to go here, which was an astronomical waste of time,” Bunmei commented, not too pleased with being on his hands and knees for hours, only to dig up some inferior magical items, a necklace and some antique gun that was far too damaged to sell in the market place. None of this was profitable in the slightest.
“Man, all of this was for nothing,” Pazusu whined and tilted his head down.
“I guess we should go and get Rosario and Pippin,” Seishira settled. There was nothing more that could have been done where they were at this point in time.
“They were supposed to be guarding the parameter, right?” Bunmei inquired.
“Yes, but I haven't seen them this whole time,” the mage noted. She wasn't sure if it was because she was busy trying to find the sword or that they just abandon their post. She was hoping that it was the prior of the two thoughts.
“Maybe they found someone or something to help point us in the right direction,” Sin could only hope that they were being constructive if they did run off.
“Wishful thinking,” Bunmei frowned. Knowing them, they were probably off gallivanting like stupid shits, walking through a flower field somewhere or making daisy chains, or some such bullshit.
Pippin and Rosario walked along the boundaries of the execution ground. Slowly but surely, Pippin kept walking slightly off course. Every time she walked by, she kept seeing something large and white out of her peripheral vision. It bothered her, as if someone or something was watching their every move, waiting to strike and bring them down.
“Are you sure that we should be going away without notifying the others?” Rosario asked, hesitant on leaving her post.
“It's only for a minute. Besides, I saw something behind this tree,” Pippin inched over to a rather large tree that was a few feet off course, leaving the wavy-haired girl to ponder to herself as she went to investigate the problem.
“Behind the tree?”
“Yeah, like they were watching us. I bet it's one of those bounty hunters. I'm going to beat them at their own game.” After prowling for a few inches, taking careful steps until she was nearly to her destination, the girl dug her feet into the ground and raced towards the giant plant, turning around the corner as Rosario shouted her name, and begged her to wait. As the tanned girl whirled around, ready to engage herself in battle, she skidded to a stop and a look of shock etched itself on her face.
“Ack! Who are you?”
…To Be Continued