~~ Title ~~ Illusion

== Author == Daimon Minerva


- Chapter - Seventeen

- Title - Spilt Blood on the Holy Ground



"Who's there?"

"Elexia, I can't see you. Where are you?"

"I'm right here...where are you?"

"I can't feel it anymore, Elexia!"

"What can't you feel? Who are you? Where am I!?"

"E-Elexia...I can't feel the sword anymore...."


Saden opened his eyes and glanced to his right. Elexia was positioned upright in her sleeping space and her breathing was fast. He watched as she touched her chest, maybe to feel her heart and her eyes closed. "That voice," she whispered to herself," That voice was so familiar and warm. Yet, it was filled with pain and loss. Why was he saying my name over and over?"

Saden turned away towards the wall and stared at it for a moment. He rolled over onto his back and out of the corner of his eye, Elexia looked at him. "Did I wake you?" She asked.

"No, you didn't wake me. Where's Leon?" Saden inquired as he motioned towards the space near the door.

Elexia bristled. "I don't know," she hissed.

Saden looked over at her and he sat up. "What's with the angry tone of voice?"


Elexia stood up and readjusted her clothes. Saden stood up also, readjusted his accessories and turned to the window. Leon stood at the exit to Midway Point and Diesu wasn't present. The two exited the inn and walked over to Leon. Saden rested his hand on the butt of his sword and looked at Leon. "Well rested?" He asked," We'll be arriving at the top of the mountain soon and Illusion."

"I'm as rested as I should be," Leon replied as he turned to Saden," I just hope you two are ready for this."

Elexia frowned and kept her eyes away from Leon. He smiled at this, turned and started to walk. "Let's get going, we have no time to dilly dally here."

Saden nodded and motioned for Elexia to walk beside him. "You should let the girl walk by herself, that's the only way for her to get used to attacks by bandits. You won't be able to defend her once you've stepped onto the cobblestone balcony of Illusion because you'll have your own neck to look out for," Leon warned.

Elexia glared hard at him and clutched onto Saden's arm, which surprised him. "Hey, what's with the possesiveness?" Saden asked," You scared of the mountain or Leon?"

"Neither, both are easily conquered," Elexia retorted.

Leon smiled and unsheathed his blade that he then rested on his shoulder. "You should first study your opponent before making those kind of assumptions, princess," he said and started to tap his blade on his shoulder," They are unpredictable bastards."

The group ventured higher up the mountain and encountered nothing but wind. The scenery changed from a few plants, to none at all and then into just smooth rock that made it tricky to ascend. The three finally found the top and it was flat. Save for the few small pebbles that made a path to a bridge which led up into the clouds and this made Elexia's skin tingle. "You sure that's the way we need to go?" She asked," Doesn't look very sturdy."

"The bridge is sturdy enough," Leon remarked," Don't be such a scaredy cat about it, princess."

"Will you quit calling me that! My name is Elexia!"

Saden sighed. "Stop arguing, we'll need that strength once we reach the top," he said.

Leon started up the bridge, Elexia was behind him and Saden was the rear. To Elexia's surprise, the bridge was sturdy and she hated to be wrong. Especially wrong when it came to arguments with Leon and she clenched the hilt of her sword tight in her grasp.

The group made it to the top and Leon stopped them from stepping on the balcony of Illusion. The sky was bright, birds sang as they passed and Leon knew this was all an image the castle developed to fool the mind into believing it was a place of joy. The castle itself was huge and trees were on the grass which grew deep green. Flowers reached to the sky and there was even a small pool to the right of the walkway. The castle indeed floated in the air and Elexia had to resist the urge to look down. "This place is what I imagined it to be," Saden muttered," A false mask."

Leon smiled and turned to the two. "So, who wants to go first?" He asked," How about you, Elexia."

He grabbed her around the waist that made her cry out in surprise, then tossed her towards the balcony. Saden grabbed Leon by the shirt. "What the hell are you thinking!!!??"

"Just watch and see. If the dead come and kill her, then we won't have a chance to enter Illusion. She must be the fairest heart here."

Elexia hit the ground and her brain racked with fury. She hurried to get to her feet, turned to the two and waved her fists at Leon. "You ass! Why the hell did you do that to me, you jerk! I'll rip your fucking head off once you get onto this balcony!" She screamed at him.

Saden and Leon's jaw dropped in total shock. Saden closed his mouth and looked around. "Well, I think she scared the dead," he mused," Let's get going."

Leon nodded and jumped onto the balcony. Elexia stormed over to him and jumped onto him. "I was serious when I said I was going to tear your head off, jerk! Now you're going to get the worst treatment in the world!" Elexia growled and tried to strangle him.

Leon growled back and tried to make grabs for her, but failed. Saden rolled his eyes and stepped onto the balcony. "Will you two cut it out already! You're acting like toddlers!" He exclaimed," Let's get going into Illusion and meet the High Priest."

"I'll be joining you," a voice said from behind Saden.

Elexia stopped screaming and dropped down off of Leon. Saden turned around and came face to face with Blake. He smiled and bowed to Elexia. "Princess," he said and stood up straight," I followed you three here and decided to check it out myself. Besides, I have a few things to find out myself."

"Well, you can wait here, pops. I'm not allowing anyone else to join this party," Leon said and strolled over," I don't give a damn if you want to see your memories and future. We got here first and we're going in first."

Blake shrugged and walked past Leon. "I don't think you can get through with just two other people, Leon Chateau."

Leon turned around. "How do you know my whole name? I've never spoken with you until now."

Saden patted Leon on the shoulder and smiled as he walked around him. "Blake seems to know everyone," Saden said," Doesn't matter if he has spoken with them or not."

Elexia jumped onto Blake and hugged him tight. "Good to see you also, Elexia," Blake said and hugged her back.

"Can we get moving now, it's getting dark and I don't think we want to be out here when it gets dark," Saden said.

The other three nodded and Elexia walked next to Saden while the other two were in the back.

--= Inside Illusion.....

The inside was the total opposite of what the outside looked and it was filled with gothic paintings. The design of the inside was dark and the artwork was of malice. Violent paintings that seethed with death and pain. The floor was made of red tile, crimson red to show the true color of blood that had been spilled inside of this place and Elexia experienced a few cold chills which rushed up her spinal column. "Can we find the High Priest, quickly?" She asked," This place is giving me the creeps."

"Not only you, princess," Leon replied as he looked around," This place has some pretty bad auras going around and I'd rather not stick to this hall for too long."

"That isn't a wise thing to do," Blake agreed," This hall is the Hall of the Dead and Undead."

Elexia swallowed hard and clutched onto Saden's arm tightly. "Undead...meaning..like, zombies and vampires? Things that go bump in the night?"

"Yeah, but they prefer young women over grown men because their meat is tender," Leon said.

"Leon!!!" Elexia whined and tears appeared at the corners of her eyes," Saden, tell Leon to leave me alone! This place is already giving me the heebie jeebies, I don't need him to make it worse."

"Leon, scare the hell out of her," Saden said with a playful smile.

Elexia pouted and Saden laughed as he patted her head. "You've become more like him since we've entered this place, maybe the evil is getting to you. Nothing's happened to Leon because he's already rotten to the bone," she sneered.

Blake groaned. "Let's just keep walking and don't stare at the floor or pictures for too long. Just look ahead towards the door and then we'll be in the clear of this darkness," he said.

The group nodded and headed for the next room that seemed so far away. Elexia glanced at the pictures and found herself drawn to one. A picture of a man with great wings and two children who clutched his legs. Blood was smeared over the man and the children. The blood seemed to have come from the other winged figure who had platinum hair and glowing eyes. Yet, it didn't seem like it was really coming from the figure and Elexia stared at it.


The same voice from her dreams echoed in her head. She was speechless as the man with the children turned to her, his orbs of gold flashed and the children exploded into a gory mess. "I can't feel it anymore, Elexia," he said.

As he turned, a sword was in his chest and at the other end was the hand of the figure that held the hilt. Elexia found that his eyes were staring straight into hers and suddenly she collapsed to the ground. Saden gasped and knelt beside her. "Elexia! Hey!" He yelled," What's wrong?"

"She might have fainted from fear," Leon mused.

"No....she didn't faint from fear," Blake muttered as he turned to the painting of the two figures with wings," She stared at a painting and now she's at its mercy."

Saden tried to shake Elexia awake and pulled his hands away quickly. "Her flesh has gone ice cold! Has she died!?" He exclaimed.

"No, her soul has seperated from her body and is now inside of that painting. Her body is reacting to the loss of its soul by going cold and preserving her," Blake replied.

Leon looked at Blake. "How do you know all of this?" He asked," Have you come here before?"

Blake turned to the two young men and his face was expressionless. "We all have come here before...long, long ago."

Saden and Leon looked at Blake confused. Elexia's body twitched and her soul seperated. The soul exploded into particles and was sucked into the painting.


to be continued....

Oooh, what will happen now that Elexia's soul has been sucked into that painting of the men with wings? The children...two of them, what does this mean? Find out in chapter eighteen!