Author: S.hines PM
The Knight of Dark and her companions search for a lost friend through the shadow filled world. Two remaining Knights return to the realm to save the world. Once light returns, will darkness truly be vanquished?Rated: Fiction K+ - English - Adventure/Fantasy - Chapters: 10 - Words: 21,277 - Updated: 03-18-13 - Published: 12-15-12 - id: 3083162
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
"Any of this ring a bell, kid?" Lana questioned as she hacked down the tree branches.
The two had been wandering through the rainforest for a couple days. Lana was not sure she was heading the right way, but followed the directions given to her by Jeff. Reed was of no help to her as he was in just as much amazement of their surroundings as she was.
Reed laughed a little, hoping that Lana was not serious. "I'll take that as a no."
"I'm enjoying how beautiful this all is."
"Don't get me wrong. This is pretty damn great. But I don't want to be walking in circles, you know?"
Reed pulled back a branch and let Lana pass through. She emerged to a vast desert ahead of her. Lana peeked back at Reed.
"I think we're good."
"Don't forget we have four more days to get lost in a hot desert. We could potentially die," pointed out Lana as she pulled a canteen from Reed's pack. She took a large drink and tossed the water to Reed. He caught it easily and smiled at Lana as she lead him into the desert.
Rylan peered back at Zeke and Cam, worried about venturing further into the abandoned laboratory. The group had encountered a few Umbras who resided in the laboratory. They were easily defeated, but Rylan did not want a repeat of what happened outside.
A few loud footsteps caused all three to pull out their weapons. Rylan held up her bow and pushed her arrow feathers against her cheek. Zeke clutched his sword and Cam held onto his staff. Rylan heard no voices from her bracelet signaling an enemy, so Rylan spun around the corner quickly. The arrow was pointed straight at a young lady's face as she just smirked. She did not seem alarmed, but rather welcoming.
"Hello there," she greeted happily. She lifted her forefinger, pushing the arrow away from her face. "Welcome to the labs..." She paused, leaning out to look at Zeke and Cam, who were hidden behind Rylan. "Can I help you guys?"
The young lady had messy dirty-blonde hair that was styled into dreadlocks. She had a colorful mosaic like headband that held her heavy hair from her face. Her black eyes glistened over the group. Usually black eyes would frighten others, but Rylan, Zeke, and Cam found comfort in normal black eyes.
"We're looking for Dr. Veda," informed Cam, stepping forward.
"You're about twenty years too late. Dr. Veda has passed away."
"Passed away?" exclaimed Rylan, glaring at Cam. "I thought he had solved the whole 'not dying' thing."
The girl laughed at Rylan. "He certainly solved the 'not aging' thing, but not dying is another topic of its own." She looked at the apprehensive group, as they all stood still clenching onto their weapons. "Follow me, guys." She started back in the direction she came from. "I'll try to help you with whatever you need."
Zeke came to Rylan's side, holding on to her left arm. He held her close to him, following Cam as he followed the girl. Asha poked her head up from Cam's pack, wondering what was happening. Zeke waved Asha to him, so she flew quickly to him.
"Who was the girl?" Asha asked Rylan.
"We're not sure. She seems to know Dr. Veda."
"Did she have black eyes?"
Rylan nodded and Asha petted her purple braid. Zeke side glanced at Rylan, smiling a little. "Glitter, glitter."
Rylan and Asha laughed a little, enjoying Zeke's ignorance. Cam turned his head a little, shooting a glance at them. Zeke urged Asha into Rylan's pack so she could stay in hiding.
The girl opened the door to a large room used for experiments. There was a table in the corner of the room that the girl went to immediately. Cam sat across from her as Rylan took a seat in between him and Zeke.
"I'm sorry, but we did not catch your name."
"Oh, I'm Ophelia, but please call me Lia. I was Dr. Veda's assistant," she tilted her head a little. "And you guys are?"
"My name is Zeke."
"And I am Camden," Cam answered quickly, almost dreamily.
"How did you guys know Veda?" Rylan and Zeke pointed at Cam, showing that they had no answer. Lia laughed. "Well, I figured he would know." She pointed to her black eyes. "What number are you?"
Cam stuck out his right index finger, showing a small tattoo on the inside. Rylan had always noticed the number one on his finger, but did not know the meaning. Lia peered in at his tattoo and sat back, grinning ear-to-ear. She stuck out her right finger, showing the group the number three.
"I thought one was dead."
"Still kicking," joked Zeke, pushing his friend's shoulder.
"And I can see your not merged either."
Cam shook his head. "Mac is still wandering out there. What about your other half?"
Lia's eyes faded to the gray and Rylan prepared for some pain. But just as quickly as her eyes turned gray, she went back to black. "She was killed. It's just me and my Umbras."
"You're the Antumbra part then?" questioned Rylan, eager to learn more about the Antumbras.
Lia shrugged. She explained, "I don't know which I am. Whether I am the shadow or the human and I guess I'll never know."
"But you can summon Umbras."
"I can. And I'm assuming you can as well?"
"I've never summoned Umbras, but I do have a Penumbra."
Lia sat up swiftly, slamming her hands on the table, frightening Rylan and Zeke. "Can I see it?"
Cam nodded, looking to Zeke. Zeke opened the flap to Rylan's pack and smiled at it. Asha had her light on as she flew into Zeke's open hand. He put his hand on the table, letting Asha dim her light and walk towards Lia. Lia lowered her head in absolute awe, grinning at the fairy.
"I've seen some other Penumbras, but she is beautiful. What is her name?"
"My name Asha."
"She can talk!" exclaimed Lia, giddy with excitement.
"No good, but yes."
"Did you teach her?" Lia asked Cam.
"I don't think so. I can't understand her, but she learned to mimic us, I suppose."
Asha nodded. She wandered back to Rylan, sitting down in front of her.
"I'm sorry I'm bombarding you with questions. I am pretty lonely down here. It's nice to meet others. But you came here for some answers." She crossed her hands in front of her. "What can I help you with?"
"We have questions about Antumbras and merging," replied Rylan.
"We had a friend who was bitten by an Umbra and turned into an Antumbra," began Zeke.
"Was he merged?" inquired Lia.
"We don't know."
"When we found her, she was crazy," Zeke put his hands in the air.
Lia smirked, but shook her head. "What were her eyes like? Black or human irises?"
"They were normal, but when she was angry or summoning, they would turn black," Rylan cut in. Zeke and Cam nodded though.
"She was merged."
"So I guess our question is, once you are merged, do you turn crazy?"
Lia smiled again, unsure what Zeke meant. "What was crazy about your friend?"
"She wanted to kill us a lot. And when Rylan joined our group, she went a little bit more berserk."
"Before she was bitten, did she have jealousy issues?" Zeke and Cam both nodded slowly. "When you merge the two, depending on the order, it can alter how they are," Lia explained further. Zeke, Cam, and Rylan sat forward. "Shadow first, then human causes the human to remember the past life. Human, then shadow, they cannot recall as much. They can be easily manipulated." Lia paused. "Obviously she remembered being jealous. But who merged her?"
"How should we know?" shouted Zeke, throwing his hands up. "We didn't even know she was merged."
"Only knights of the old era and Shadow Summoners can merge Antumbras."
Cam peered over at Rylan, who looked between Zeke and him. Asha even looked up at Rylan.
"It had to have been a Summoner," mumbled Zeke.
"Dax," confirmed Cam. "She was working for him before she was bitten."
"But how did he figure the order?" whispered Rylan.
"Knights and Summoners know," said Lia. "They can sense it." Lia stared at Rylan uncomfortably. "You're a knight, aren't you?"
Rylan's eyes shifted to Zeke, who held on to her hand tightly under the table. "I am the Knight of Dark."
"I figured," Lia smiled. "My Umbras seemed a bit touchy around you." She sat forward. "What am I?"
"I don't know."
"You'll figure it out soon enough. Your bracelet will be able to tell you when you ask. And since you hang around Cam, soon enough you will know." Lia glanced upon the three and Asha. "So who are you guys trying to save? I'm guessing its not you," she pointed to Cam, "since you've been alive for quite a while and haven't figured it out yet."
"We're trying to save a friend who was bitten a few months back."
"Have you found either sides?"
"We know where one will be."
"But you have not retrieved him?" The four shook their heads. "I would work on that. One half is lost and cannot remember a past at all. He is vulnerable, especially if someone else is looking for him."
"There is only one other group looking for him." Rylan thought of her brother and his protectors on the hunt for Reed. Cam's eyes shot over to Zeke.
"If Dax knows how to merge, he could find Reed."
Zeke stood violently, shaking the table. Cam also stood as Asha flew to his shoulder. Rylan gazed up at her two companions. Lia was also eager to see what their next move was.
"Cam, you need to get to Holden first. Rylan and I will get there as soon as we can."
Cam nodded, teleporting immediately out of the laboratory. Zeke started to head for the exit, while Rylan stayed at the table with Lia for a moment.
"Remember, shadow first, then human. They will not be exactly the same, but close enough." Lia reached out her hand to touch Rylan's left hand. "Your bracelet is strong. He is deceitful, but strong. Try to stay stronger than he and you won't have to fear what you are."
"How do I do that?"
Lia shrugged and leaned back. She said, "That's knight business. I only handle Umbras." She peered up at Zeke and stood. She went to old metal cabinet and searched through some vials. She pulled three vials and handed them to Zeke. "One is for you and your anger problems. Another for the strong half when he wants to blow up someone's brain." She turned, handing the last bottle to Rylan. "The third for you, so you don't darken every time you get bitten."
"How do you know that?" asked Zeke as he looked at the red liquid in his bottle.
She grinned. "Weird power where I can see the future with a touch. Thankfully have medicine lying around here, especially having to do with shadows. Not like I need them." She searched through the cabinet one last time and puffed out in defeat. "I don't have anything for Cam's lost powers. But come back when you can and I'll have something to help him."
"You're welcome," she smiled.
Zeke pulled Rylan to the door, wanting to leave. Rylan pulled away from him, pausing at the door to look at Lia.
"Why don't you come with us?"
Lia chuckled, shaking her head. "My job is here. I don't do the outside world." She nodded for Rylan to go.
"She did not seem bad," Rylan thought to herself. "Not much of a shadow master."
"She is not the shadow master," chorused the voices in her head.
"You said she was."
"She is half of a whole."
"A shadow traitor," spat a voice. "Disgusting."
"Her other half died," explained Rylan.
"So she thinks."
Rylan realized how far behind she fell as she talked to her bracelet. So Rylan chased Zeke out of the lab. Zeke burst through the doors and his head shot to the skies. He searched for the direction he needed to go in. The forty-four day journey needed to go quicker on the way back. It would take Cam a long time to return back, even though he was just teleporting.
Zeke looped his hand around Rylan's small wrist and threw her on his back.
"I need to go into a rage," said Zeke, craning his head to look up at her. "You need to stab me or something." Rylan moaned as she summoned her dagger. She sliced his shoulder, causing a little blood to seep out. The wound healed over quickly but began the cycle.
Zeke's breathing started to increase and the veins on the side of his neck bulged. Rylan only saw the profile of his face but could see his red eyes flaring up. In his rage, Zeke could run faster, but was also more dangerous to be around. Rylan had the new potion to help her calm him down if he got too out of control, but Rylan hated seeing him in such a state.
Zeke ran through the forest, a short cut past the city. Rylan gripped her arms around his neck tightly, squeezing her eyes shut as she laid her head on the back of his head. She listened to his rapid heart beat and his deep breathing.
"You know that you will never find Reed."
"Someone will have already found him by the time you arrive."
"Camden cannot teleport fast enough."
"Even Ezekiel cannot get there in his rage."
"Only you could make it there first. Use the shadow teleport."
Rylan ignored the voices, continuing to listen to the fast rhythm of Zeke's heartbeat.