Hey, Anters here to introduce my most well known and longest story, The Elements: Hours of Darkness. This story was an extremely fun piece to write, and although I still have not finished the ending yet, I have written the majority of the story many times over for maximum enjoyment to you, the reader! I hope you find as much enjoyment within the story as much as I have found writing it, and discovering my characters over and over again. Without further ado, I leave you to the very beginning…

The Elements: Hours of Darkness

要素: 暗闇の時間

"Life is said to be created, lived, and destroyed by the interactions of the nine elements."

This is the unalterable fate bestowed into each of the Element's lives. They hold the balance of the worlds within their hands, able to keep balance of life. Nine beings imparted with the curse of the Element Cycle, concealing life's most mysterious and unsolvable secrets from everyone, including themselves. Indescribable power intertwines blindly to each Element's life, and this power is the basis of what the Element Cycle justly holds secret.

Chapter 1- No New Beginnings

A refreshing breeze blowing in from the ocean brought a relief to the city of Towerin, suffering another day of virtually a hundred and fifteen degree weather. Located far north from the Earth's equator, receiving such soaring temperatures was rather abnormal from the usual stormy summer season.

Despite the heat, a group of thirty, or so, business men and women, some of which were wiping their brows with moist towelettes, stood in front of a newly-constructed marble building, labeled "First National Bank of Wright." Atop several steps leading to the front doors of the structure was an unstable podium, with a man whose hair seemed to be leaving his head for his outsized, graying mustache, standing at it.

"First off, as the mayor of Towerin, I would like to thank everyone who attended this opening of the First National Bank of Wright!" the man said to the audience of questionable attentiveness. "And without further ado, I'll cut the ribbon, and the bank shall be declared open!" With that, a suitable golf clap sprang into the air.

But, as the mayor reached for the hefty scissors leaning against a support column, a sudden piercing gunshot was heard, and several screams following. Three ski-masked men made their way through the alarmed audience, until a single masked man reached the steps and up to where the mayor was standing immobile with fear.

"No reason to be afraid mayor," the crook said ironically, "we're only here for the money!" The crook then fired several shots off at the crystal clear glass door, which immediately shattered into thousands of pieces. Lifting his tactical shotgun to an upright position against his chest conceitedly, the crook began walking to his newly made entrance.

But, before he could make it through, a blindingly swift projectile smashed into his occupied hand, forcing the shotgun out of it, and causing a through-n-through hole in the leather glove the felon was wearing. Sweeping around hastily to find the cause, he saw his two allies laying unconscious at the feet of a sixteen year old girl, who had her arms crossed and her teal eyes fixated directly on him.

She then pushed back her golden brown bangs out of her face, the rest of her shoulder-length golden brown hair dancing madly around her in the summer breeze. The crook suddenly dashed from his spot, and ran away from the girl, taking a road into the city.

"Why do they always do it the hard way?" the girl asked in an unhurried and annoyed manner. She then unveiled a yellow, rounded device from her pocket and brought it to her lips, holding down a button in the process. "Hey Allen, its Evelyn."

"What'cha need Evelyn?" a male voice came from the communicator.

"I've got a run-away crook heading towards downtown. Are any of the others guys in the vicinity?" Evelyn asked, still attempting to keep her bothersome hair out of her mouth and face.

"Yeah, it looks like Lelu and Thor are downtown. I'll send them a warning, and me, Crüsh, and Lexsis will meet you down there for the fun!" Allen said back over the communicator.

"Thanks; I better get to chasing then!" Evelyn said hitting another button on the communicator and slipping it back into her brown jean pants pocket. Evelyn then began to pursue the crook, but stopped at the sound of her name. She turned around to see the mayor walking towards her.

"Evelyn, try not to destroy anything this time around, okay?" he asked with a smile, and received one back.

"Fine, we'll keep the fighting to a minimum… this time." Evelyn said with a mischievous grin, before sprinting off to where the crook had ran a minute prior. The mayor watched her run through an alleyway in-between two apartment buildings, smiling the entire time. He knew there was nothing to worry about.

水 風 火 地 暗闇 ライト 電光 雷 金属

"Okay, Thor, I have a question about this whole baseball thing." said Lelu. Lelu was a sixteen year old Pacific Island girl with long black hair that reached down to the middle of her back.

"You can't tell me that they didn't have baseball over in where you used to live Lelu." Remarked Thor, a seventeen year old with short, jet-black hair with navy blue highlights mixed in, and matching black eyes. He also supplied a sparkling black goatee that added to the "mysterious" look.

"Yeah, they had baseball in the Philippines, but it wasn't as hyped up as it is here. I mean, I move here and BANG, there are people willing to kill just to get tickets to a game. Madness." Lelu said, continuing to walk alongside Thor on the hectic sidewalks of Downtown Towerin.

"I suppose non-athletic people don't understand." Thor said with a lighthearted grin, knowing that'd get Lelu riled up.

"Hey, I'm athletic as well! I'd kick your ass in badminton!" Lelu said, pushing Thor humorously with one hand.

"I'll have to take you on with that challenge sometime." Thor replied, not bothering to thrust back.

"Anytime anywhere pretty boy." Lelu said, glaring over to Thor, before she noticed he had stopped a few feet back. She turned around; her glossy black hair flowing with her movements, and saw Thor had pulled out his communicator. It was in the same round shape as Evelyn's except sported a black color instead.

"Something wrong?"

"Looks like a run-away wannabe burglar heading our way." Thor said critically, stuffing his communicator into the inside of his black coat he was wearing, and zipping the pocket up so the communicator wasn't capable of falling out.

"Figures." Lelu said, rolling her emerald green eyes. As they began to look around for suspicious activity, they found it like finding a green apple in a group of oranges: very easy. Around two blocks down from the black-haired teens' location, a masked man was running hurriedly in their direction. But, unhelpfully, a motorcyclist had stopped for a red light, right in the route of the crook.

With a swift kick, the crook knocked the motorcyclist into the street, swung his leg around to the opposed side of the motorcycle, balanced himself, and tore off into the street next to Thor and Lelu, ignoring the red light and maneuvering around traffic as well.

"Here he comes!" Thor yelled over his shoulder to Lelu, who was concentrating on the pending motorcycle. As the crook neared the teens within seconds, Lelu broke her focus from him, and pointed her palm at the street about to be traversed. Immediately, a stone wall erupted from the street and towered over everyone to the point that the top of the wall reached the seventh floor of an adjacent apartment building.

The crook pressed the brakes hard, but still managed to plow directly into the newly erected stone wall, and the force of the impact made him ricochet backwards several feet. As Thor and Lelu walked vigilantly out into the street, and a crowd grew, the crook slowly got to his feet unsteadily.

"God Damnit, there are more of you little bastards?" the felon yelled irritably. He reached behind his head and tenderly examined a large gash with his fingers.

"That is some dirty language." Thor said crossly, keeping a safe distance from the criminal. Without forewarning, the crook reached to a concealed area located on his belt, and pulled out a pistol, setting off a shot lacking aim.

Thor, not taking any chances, swiftly vanished in a jumble of obscurity, sinking into the ground until only a small dark circle remained on the ground where he once stood. Simultaneously, Lelu had turned to face the crowd and, with suggestion from her hand, a fist made of pure stone arose from the ground in front of the crowd. The bullet pierced into the palm of the stone, but stopped without delay against the durable surface. Fittingly, the fingers of stone closed, portraying as if the stone detained the bullet.

Across the way, in the midst of the growing crowd, Evelyn found herself having to fight thrill-seekers just to get through to help Lelu and Thor. With a few hostile pushes, Evelyn emerged to where the circle of people stopped, allowing a safe distance from the crook, or what they thought to be a safe distance.

"Damnit!" the crook yelled, pointing his firearm at Evelyn and, with a little more aim, pulled the trigger, causing a earsplitting 'BANG' to be heard. But, once again, his attempts were to no anvil, as a virtually transparent and slim veil of light surrounded Evelyn for a few seconds in a rotund shape, bouncing the shot straight into the air.

"You're not a very bright crook, are you?" Evelyn asked valiantly, treating the criminal like nothing more then a misbehaved child. She then, crossed her left arm across her body, like she was giving herself a one-armed hug, before swinging it back around swiftly. At a near blinding velocity, a light disk erupted from between two of Evelyn's fingers, blasting into the criminal's hand not even a second after it left Evelyn's fingers.

"What the hell?" the crook shouted in astonishment as his firearm was forced from his hand at impact of the attack, precisely like the first time at the bank.

"I suppose you have no idea who you're dealing with?" Thor asked jokily from behind the crook, as he had arisen from the ground once more. Lelu stood with her arms folded alongside him, amused at the crook's lack of awareness.

"Hey Evelyn! We didn't miss the action yet?!" came a familiar voice from above the battlefield. Evelyn (along with curious witnesses) peered into the sky, seeing a teenager of eighteen and 6'1 floating gently down next to Evelyn. He had short, spiked, and gelled olive green and navy blue hair, and silver gleaming eyes.

"Well, you know, we were waiting for you to join the party Allen." Evelyn said with a cynical smile at her friend who had just landed next to her. He looked down at her with his silver eyes.

"Thanks for waiting, it's been boring lately. I could use the action!" he said, punching a fist into his palm. "Oh, Crüsh and Lexsis will be here in a second." he mentioned, not looking at Evelyn and continued punching his palm as he walked towards the crook. Evelyn rolled her eyes and chuckled slightly at Allen's masculine behavior. Allen was always the type to be ready for a fight.

"You don't scare me!" the crook yelled as he saw Allen walking towards him, now cracking his knuckles. Allen grinned.

"Wasn't even trying to scare you, but I'm glad I don't look monstrous!" The crook scowled with progressing fury, before charging at Allen, as his gun was now under Thor's foot, watching the bout with amusement.

Allen side-stepped quickly, grabbing the crook's left arm as he attempted to punch Allen and twisting it behind his own back. The criminal squinted in pain, and before he could react, he felt Allen's shoe press into his back.

Allen then let go of the crook's arm, and the second he did, a rupture of wind blasted from Allen's foot, throwing Allen backwards, who tastefully flipped before landing back on his feet. The crook, however, was thrown into the pavement by the burst of wind, scratching up his face under the ski mask badly.

"I also hope you know how to swim!" Allen yelled to the crook, who was slowly recuperating across the fight ring from Allen. The criminal, surprised, looked up instantly, and saw a great cylinder of water falling down right above him, and then striking him into the ground hard, sending water flying in all directions due to the powerful landing.

Breathing for air, the crook managed to get to his hands and knees, coughing from the volume of water just thrown down his esophagus.

Back on the winning side, Evelyn turned around at the sound of small, plastic wheels coming through the crowd. A seventeen year old male, about 6'3 in height, and ear-length brown hair, immerged from the crowd on a wholesome black skateboard, his connectors to his helmet unhooked, and flailing behind him.

"I suppose I didn't miss much?" he asked, with a dry, tedious attitude that made him seem like he really didn't want to be there.

"No, I think your waterfall there did the trick." Evelyn said back, looking at him, his pure navy blue eyes shining in the sun. He didn't return the gaze.

"Lexsis, only give him a small shock." Evelyn heard Thor say. She turned back to the situation in front of her, and noticed a sixth teenager, a sixteen year old girl with shoulder length purple hair and matching eyes; kneel down and place her hands kindly on the crook's shoulders.

Suddenly, small sparks erupted from her hands, and traveled throughout the crook's body, finally exiting his shoes and into the ground. He then collapsed, defeated but still alive. The girl who had delivered the calm, ending blow stood up once more.

"Now we should call an ambulance, and then the police." She said so considerately, that is was hard to believe she had just knocked out a full grown man.

After several minutes, the spectators to the fight had left, Lelu had receded the stone wall that had once towered above the street, and the crook had been exported to the hospital, police following close behind in a display of flashing red and blue lights, ready to make an arrest when the crook came too.

The six teens watched as they drove quickly through Downtown Towerin, maneuvering around traffic and making their way through the large city blocks that where the foundations to the skyscrapers that rose up above them.

"Well, too bad that wasn't more exciting." Allen said with a bored expression, connecting his hands together into a cup shape, and placing them behind his head as a sort of comfort.

水 風 火 地 暗闇 ライト 電光 雷 金属

Evening hit, casting the skies above Towerin into a flurry of pinks, yellows, and orange. The shadows of the skyscrapers in North-West Towerin gave buildings in its path a premature nocturnal life.

As the sun slowly sank into the ocean to the west, commuting traffic in and out of downtown grew larger and larger, soon breaking any serenity in the evening sky with strident honks or horns, skidding brakes, and other nuisances.

Far away from the racket of the evening, in the peaceful side of Towerin south of the skyscraper jungle, where neighborhoods flourished with a wealth of passivity, a teenager of eighteen walked silently along a broken up sidewalk, small weeds protruding from the cracks.

He wore a black sweatshirt, the hood up so that the dimness helped veil his face from onlookers. Other than that, he looked relatively normal, with brown jean shorts worn baggy at the knees and a pair of worn out black shoes, with melted red gel mixed into a design once immaculate but now dirty and worn.

He walked for a while, until he reached the piers within Towerin Harbor, which was more of a tourist attraction then an actual harbor. Large cruise liners still docked in the harbor, but most people visiting simply came for the distinctive atmosphere of buildings and shops built on dubious pieces of wood over the ocean.

He soon found the location sought out, a small alley on tangible grounds between a shrimp shop, and a storage facility that was boarded up, with a sign stating "Closed for Repairs." Half-looking at any possible people that might be watching him, which there weren't any, the teen walked into the alley, the light from the sunset vanishing behind the wall of the shrimp shop.

"I see you got my message." A deep voice rang out to the teen from the darkness. The teen looked around, his eyes still adjusting to the light change, until he could make out the figure that spoke to him. He was tall, no older then twenty-five by the young looking face he had. He wore a white tank top, showing arms with years of bench-lifting behind them.

At the sight of him, the masked teenager pushed his hood back, locks of tomato red hair falling over his matching red eyes.

"Yeah, I came. I was curious." The teen said, shaking his head a few times back and fourth so that it made his ear-length red hair feel comfortable and out of his eyes.

"How long has it been since you last saw me? I never noticed the—" he cut his sentence short, rubbing his clean-cut chin, which signaled as the last word of his sentence, as the red-haired teen also had a matching goatee.

"Why did you call me here Adar?" the red-haired teen asked, cold as ice, as he disregarded the gestures the other teenager, obviously named Adar, was making.

"Hell, you're pretty serious nowadays, aren't ya?" Adar asked in amusement. The red-haired teen stood completely still, arms crossed, glaring at Adar without blinking. The smile on Adar's face quickly vanished, and he cleared his throat several times, sounding as if he was getting into serious business. "I got word from them."

A concerned look appeared on the red-haired teen's face, waiting for more information. When none came for a few seconds, the red-haired teen broke the stillness. "How sure are you this time? You seem to be a hub for false hope, you know."

A grin once again appeared on Adar's face, before pulling something out of his back jean pocket. He handed it to the red-haired teen.

It was as slender as a floppy disk, vaguely larger, and with a black color. In the center of the device, a spherical shape lifted from the thin piece of metal, and petite neon blue lights dotted the boundary of the half-sphere, with a single blue light in the center of the half-sphere as well.

The red-haired teen held the thin device in one hand alone. He applied a slight bit of pressure, and the half-sphere burst to life, opening up to expose the inside of the half-sphere, which was a large neon blue light. As it opened entirely, a transparent figure appeared, standing in the center of the light.

The figure in the light was a middle-aged man, with black hair to his shoulders. He wore red armor, which gave him a loose correspondence to a samurai, but the picture was too undersized and transparent to make out much more of the being.

"I hope you know that it's about to begin." The figure said at once, giving no introduction what so ever. "I've set up what needs to be done. It will be there before long, and the Elements will pay for what they had once did. This time, it'll be too big of a threat for them to defeat. Once they are crushed, Earth will be reclaimed, as it should be. Destiny is being fulfilled."

The light then faded, and the figure vanished. The half-sphere regained its position, and the device had returned to the way it was. The red-haired teen slowly handed the device back to Adar, his face showed deep thought.

"I told you." Adar taunted, slipping the device back into his pocket. The red-haired teen didn't acknowledge him, as he was still lost in the thoughts of his mind.

"Thanks." He finally said after a few anxious seconds for Adar. He grabbed his hood from behind his head, and slipped it on once more. He then turned his back to Adar, and walked out of the alley, back into the dimming sunset.

Adar watched him peculiarly until the hooded teen turned the corner, and was out of his sights.

水 風 火 地 暗闇 ライト 電光 雷 金属

"I welcome you, for a second time, to the grand opening of the First National Bank of Wright!" the mayor of Towerin said briskly into a microphone situated onto a podium near the entrance to the bank. Night had set in, blanketing Towerin with clouded darkness while the moon gleamed between cracks in the clouds.

"And, as we witness the opening of this bank, I'd like to also acknowledge Towerin's six young heroes who have proven, once again, that they are here to protect you Towerin!" the mayor continued, motioning to his left where Crüsh, Allen, Lelu, Thor, Evelyn, and Lexsis stood.

The audience, which hade grown from the afternoon observance, began cheering and clapping, some giving a standing ovation to the six brave heroes.

"Oh my…" Lexsis whispered next to Evelyn, who looked over. Lexsis was turning a slight shade of red in the face, uncomfortable by all the attention.

"You okay?" Evelyn asked.

"I'm just… not used to the attention, that's all." Lexsis said, holding her left arm with her right hand, feeling it hid her more. "It's my… first time being in front of so many people."

"Oh, that's right! You've not been up in the limelight before, huh?" Evelyn said, remembering Lexsis was the timid, shy, and newest member to their team. Lexsis nodded slightly. Before Evelyn could comfort her, the mayor stood up to the podium once more.

"Our young heroes: Allen: Element of Wind, Crüsh: Element of Water, Evelyn: Element of Light, Lelu: Element of Earth, Lexsis: Element of Lightning, and Thor: Element of Darkness! Together, they make Towerin's ultimate defense: The Elements Team!"

A deafening cheer, once more, emerged from the crowd. Evelyn turned to the crowd quickly, to acknowledge her position, but she didn't turn back to help Lexsis immediately. Something had caught her eye.

Near the back of the crowd, leaning against an active lamppost across the street, was the red-haired teen. He was watching her, and the others, with intimidating eyesight. He noticed immediately, however, that Evelyn detected him, and he hastily turned around, and walked away, into the shadows of the city.

Well, that is Chapter 1; hope it was enjoyable for you! If you have any questions initially, feel free to leave a review or e-mail, either one will be responded to. HUGE thanks to Anya Tempest for beta-reading this (and future) chapters for me (also, check out her stories if you've enjoyed mine!) Review to your content; any and all flames will be ignored (and/or laughed at.) -Anters-