Author: Y. S. Wong PM
Azure Dunbarton is the adopted son of a mana magnate who cherishes his peaceful life. He seeks the answer to two questions: the location of the lost sword Valhalla and the identity of his parents. On the same day, the terrorist organization R.A.I.N. and a mysterious girl named Tsukiko appear. In his search for answers, will Azure's peaceful life crumble as well? Updates on Fridays.Rated: Fiction T - English - Adventure/Fantasy - Chapters: 21 - Words: 45,194 - Reviews: 167 - Favs: 15 - Follows: 17 - Updated: 05-24-13 - Published: 01-09-13 - id: 3090625
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
ORCHID 1.3 HALCYON DAYS ARE OVER PT. III
Pitter-patter. Pitter-patter. The rain falls lightly on the roof of the van parked by the curb in front of Skyscraper One. Inside the van sits a dark figure, shrouded in the shadows of the evening. Hunching over in the driver's seat, this person gives a soft smirk as an agitated voice reaches him over the radio.
The figure turns a dial on the radio inside the van, and soon the agitated voice rings clearly inside the interior of the vehicle: "Mercutio! Mercutio! Do you read me? This is Macbeth."
"The operation will commence in approximately fifteen minutes. At that point, enter the building fifteen meters to your left. You will have roughly thirty minutes to secure the target. Success rate should approach ninety-five percent within the time limit. Make sure you have everything you need. Understood?"
"Are you even listening?!"
As the voice on the other end grows more irate, the man named Mercutio leans forward and shuts off the radio, silencing the angry voice with it. Reaching into his van's glove compartment, Mercutio retrieves a juice box from it. He fumbles around with the straw momentarily, before successfully poking a hole in the box.
Mercutio takes a long drink from the box. "Grape, huh?" he murmurs as he savors the taste, crushing the half-finished juice box in his hand. "I envisaged a much more august piquancy for a devious scoundrel as myself, but I surmise I am at no liberty to air my grievous grievances in relation to the parsimonious practices of juice box manufacturers at this present moment. Woe is the revolutionary whose duty so relentlessly calls that he cannot so much as enjoy the simple pleasures of a drought of fruit-flavored high-fructose corn syrup!"
Humming pleasantly to himself, Mercutio drums his fingers on the steering wheel for a few seconds. Suddenly, a thunderous explosion sounds from somewhere far above him. Craning his head up with the trace of a smirk on his face, Mercutio observes as a searing ball of flames surges out from the very top of Skyscraper One. Fragments of debris and shrapnel rain down from the sky.
Immediately, the van's door bursts open as Mercutio leaps out of it. He slips a strange leathery black glove onto his right hand and flexes his fingers. "All right," Mercutio says, gingerly slamming the door of the van shut behind him.
Gleefully, Mercutio flies into action without another word, as he glides towards the unguarded entrance to Skyscraper Two.
From within the unseen recesses of the ninety-fifth floor of Skyscraper One lurks a pair of bright red eyes. They watch silently as Azure Dunbarton disappears onto the sky bridge outside. Suddenly, two pairs of footsteps sound from behind.
"This way! I know I heard a noise around here…."
The girl with long black hair spins with frightening agility, elbowing one of the fake G.L. soldiers in the stomach. He tumbles backwards, tripping awkwardly over a fallen beam of steel, while the girl lithely dodges several rounds fired from the second soldier's weapon.
"You damn bitch!" snarls the second soldier, raising his gun again. The girl's pale but calm face shines brightly in the light of the moon. A pair of steely black-silver eyes gazes back at the false soldier. Undaunted, the soldier lobs another taunt at the girl. "Who do you think you are, anyway? No civilians are allowed here."
At the exact same moment as the guard prepares to fire again, the girl raises her right hand. Silver-like shards of glass materialize out of thin air at her beckoning. With beautiful, shimmering grace, the crystals repel the bullets fired by the soldier. The gold casings fall to the ground, torn in half.
"What the—?!" the soldier exclaims bewilderedly, stepping away at the sight of the girl's eyes, which have turned bright crimson. "Impossible! The r—?!"
Before the man can finish his sentence, the girl draws a gun of her own. She fires one shot from the pistol that penetrates the man's skull directly between the eyes. The soldier immediately falls to the ground dead.
At the very zenith of Skyscraper One stands the mysterious man known as Macbeth. The rain pounds lightly upon his shoulders, but he does not appear to mind. Several sharp strands of his dark hair, which is cropped short, chafe against his chiseled ears and sunken gray eyes. Two or three days' worth of whiskers lines his rigid jaw.
Behind him, a circle of his fake G.L. men surround the mass of partygoers still trapped atop the firebombed tower. Most of the guests either sit or kneel on the charred ground, frightened looks on their faces unused to the feeling of impending danger.
With one hand in his pocket, with his other Macbeth holds a radio transmitter up to the side of his face as he stares out into space at the very edge of the rooftop terrace. "Group B, keep moving upward. Secure as much of the building as you can. The Royal Police are right on your tail. Do not break ranks."
After a short couple of seconds, Macbeth returns the transmitter to his ear. "Mercutio, what is your progress?"
"Aye, aye, kindly bestow upon me another twelve minutes, Macbeth!" comes the response from the other end.
Macbeth nods. "All right. It doesn't seem as though the R.P. have caught onto our plan yet, but all the same don't take your time to smell the roses. Head straight up to the rendezvous point straight away as soon as your task is complete."
With a deep sigh, Macbeth lowers the transmitter again. He now turns his attention back towards the captive partygoers kneeling on the ground nearby. Among them, Mimi sits on the ground with her arms wrapped around her knees, her beautiful purple gown ruined by the recent blast.
"Azure…" she mumbles worriedly.
Macbeth turns away unblinkingly from the pitiful sight of the frightened reception guests. His thin mouth pressed tightly together, he gazes down at the massive bridge located three floors down. Immediately, his eyes chance upon a sight that startles even him. Macbeth's eyes widen slightly for a moment, before narrowing with thought. He presses the transmitter to his mouth again, growling, "Mercutio, do you read me? Mercutio!"
Somewhere deep within Skyscraper Two, a headset lies forgotten on the ground as Mercutio desperately dashes down a wide corridor. His fluffy light brown hair droops low over his eyes with fatigue. Glancing nervously over his shoulder, Mercutio puts on more speed as he breaks into a full sprint.
"Those dastardly R.P. rascals cottoned on quickly!" Reaching into his bomber jacket, Mercutio unleashes a handgun and blindly fires two shots over his shoulder. Shouts ring from behind, but Mercutio does not pause to look as he continues running.
On his back Mercutio carries a long and thin package, wrapped carefully in black cloth. In his sweaty left hand he clutches tightly a tiny thumb drive.
Stashing the gun away, Mercutio comes to a stop outside a door. He pushes against it, but it remains stubbornly locked. "Curses!" he scowls. Meanwhile, frantic footsteps sound from just behind him.
"Halt!" rises the voice of one of the policemen chasing after Mercutio.
In one slow motion, Mercutio spins, placing the piercing gaze of his emerald green eyes upon the two armored men. Two identical red laser dots appear between Mercutio's eyes, as the policemen direct their guns on him.
Before the two men can do anything else, however, a crooked leer breaks across Mercutio's face. Soon, the smile morphs into a fit of lurid laughter. "I daresay you fiendishly unfriendly friends shall forthwith regret those words!" he grins, brandishing his gloved right hand.
Taken aback, the two men rapidly light their weapons ablaze with fire, but Mercutio proves too fast. He slithers with impossible agility past the onrush of bullets and grabs the policeman on the right around the neck with his gloved hand. A blast of purple lightning leaps from Mercutio's hand as the man is electrified.
Reaching into his jacket again, Mercutio dodges as the second policeman aims to crack open his skull with his rifle. Mercutio launches a dagger straight through the second assailant's neck.
The two victims fall to the ground lifelessly. Within seconds, the empty corridor lapses into an eerie silence.
Hand in pocket, Mercutio saunters back to the locked door. He raises his right hand. Another surge of violet lightning ignites in his hand and throttles the door. In mere seconds it caves in, revealing a stairwell on the other side.
Hurriedly, Mercutio stumbles up the flight of stairs awaiting him. The thief breathlessly scales three or four more floors, until he finally breaks through another door and finds himself back in the main part of the tower. The door slams shut behind Mercutio with a bang as he enters the middle of a massive observation deck built for tourists.
On the right side, a view of the smoking Skyscraper One can be seen through the glass walls. Flashes of gunfire and smaller explosions periodically light up the shattered windows of the besieged building.
In the middle of the open corridor is a pair of glass doors leading out onto a deck. The deck itself connects to a sky bridge suspended high over the ground, linking the two towers.
Without warning, the click of a dozen or so guns sounds as Mercutio enters the floor. The dark outlines of the R.P. men surround Mercutio. "Hold it there!" shouts one of the policemen.
"I would sooner visit the fiery trenches of Hell!" Mercutio snarls back. Desperately, he flashes past the huddle of officers and bursts through the double doors leading onto the bridge outside. Gunfire trails after him, just clipping his heels as the shells explode on the glass windows instead. Shards of glass leap into the air as Mercutio sprints into the cool night air outside, which is heavy with the smell of smoke.
Waiting for Mercutio on the other side of the bridge is a single person. Their eyes meet at the exact midpoint of the bridge. Mercutio's bright green eyes widen as he spots this unexpected guest, the guilt clearly reflecting on his strained face.
Behind Mercutio, several Royal Policemen reach the bridge. "Stop him!" they holler, raising their guns frantically.
Mercutio's face contorts with prideful wrath. He raises his fist, lightning bristling in his right hand. "I implore you to try and stop me!" Hollering at the top of his lungs, Mercutio hurtles straight at the lone obstacle between him and freedom with reckless abandon.
A single gunshot erupts in the darkness of the night. The bullet slashes through the air with razor-like accuracy and pierces Mercutio directly in the chest. Azure Dunbarton lowers his smoking gun.
A/N: Thanks again for reading ORCHID. This series will be regularly updated by me on a weekly basis. You may expect new updates every Friday. You may NOT reproduce this work without my permission. I will report you to the appropriate authorities if I find this work has been reproduced without my permission.
DISCLAIMER: This is a work of fiction. The views expressed in this work of fiction are not necessarily representative of my own beliefs. The words and actions of characters in this story are not an endorsement of my personal ideals, nor are they meant to be interpreted as indicative of the beliefs of any other persons or organizations, real or fictional.