Chapter 33

Ciel walked among the buildings seemingly unnoticed. There weren't many people outside, most stayed inside due to the cursed rain and only left when it was absolutely necessary. He had arrived in the early hours of the morning. The river flowed into the city but someone swinging in it would have been spotted. Even if he became invisible with the mask the ripples he made in the water would still be seen. Getting out the water before the river reached the city and drying of with a quick spell he began walking through the woods to the road. Careful to not get noticed, he had only taken off the mask once he was in the city. Finding a small out of the way alley, he waited for the museum to open.

There weren't many people inside. Some elderly nobles and students from the academy. The clerk at the ticket booth looked at his ragged cloak with disapproval. Ciel made up a story of traveling from far away to see the royal treasures and how it was a lifelong dream of his. The museum was large, divided into several sections for famous works art, history, royal treasures and artefacts and technology. Ciel pretended to be looking around for a bit, before making his way to the treasure section. While it seemed like the relicts of the royal family were unprotected all one had to do was reach their hand over the restriction line to realize how wrong that assumption was.

As he stood in front of the cloak placed on an imitation of one of the kings, he wondered how he could call out to the spirit without attacking attention. If he tried to touch it the alarm would sound and the room would seal itself with a barrier. At least that was what he heard from Ozwen, who had some knowledge of security system since he had spent quite a lot of time in the museum archives. While he was pondering what to do, the cloak began to emit a glow. Surprised Ciel looked around to make sure no one was coming into the exhibit hall. A man with wings appeared. He had long black hair, tied into a high ponytail, and long sharp looking face with narrow eyes. He wore black oriental style robes with magpies in flight and white clouds.

"I see you have several relics in your possession. Which leads me to assume one thing- you are here for the cloak."

"Yes. I must break the curse that is causing the rain." Ciel said.

"I have no interest in heroics. " The man said." If you wish to obtain my relic prove that you are worthy- steal it from this place. "

"Wait you want me to steal?" Ciel was surprised.

"Prove that you have the resolve by taking what you want. "

This was not the trial he had expected, but one he had been prepared for.

"All right. Tonight then. "He said.

Ozwen paced the deck of the ship. It had already been a few hours since Ciel left. Everyone was on edge. They had no way of contacting him to check if he was alright. Ciel did leave behind a strand of Morgana's hair, so they could receive messages from him, but because of the distance they couldn't send him any.

"Can you hear me?" he heard Ciel's voice in his head.

"Oh, right, you can't answer. I've located the cloak. It is indeed a relic. The spirit guarding it has asked me to steal the cloak as a means of obtaining it. I will make my move tonight after the museum is closed. "Ozwen sight with both relief and anxiety. Finding the relic had been easy, but stealing it could be difficult.

Meanwhile Ermina had taken Val out to the nearby town to get food. There weren't any people outside but light could be seen in the windows. The inn was almost empty, aside from a few customers.

"What can I get you ladies?" the rather young looking inn keeper greeted them.

"A hot meal would be nice" Ermina said smiling at the guy. "And if you have any food to spear. We're on a bit of journey."

"There should be some stew left. But I'm afraid I can't give away anything. "

"That's alright. I still have some coin left."

Val sat down at a free table. Ermina soon joined her.

"Don't look so down. Soon this will all be over. I'm sure Ciel will break the curse. "

"I know…It's just … I have this horrible feeling." She said gazing out into the rain.

Arlene awoke from a dream, struggling to pull herself back to reality. And as her eyes became accustomed to the darkness in the room and her breathing began to calm the details of the dream slipped away. But she was certain that the dream was about Tenebros. She got out of bed and pulled on her robe, rushing to check on him. While she expected him to be sound asleep, to her surprise he was up and fully dressed in his usual white robes.

"You should be resting." She said approaching him. "What if you collapse again?"

He regarded with a strange curiosity in his eyes.

"I feel great." He said avoiding her concerned touch. "I haven't felt this powerful before. Now go to your room. I have unfinished business."

Arlene wanted to object but looking at him Tenebros seemed to emit an aura of power that sent shivers thought her body. Perhaps he had indeed become more powerful.

"Goodnight then." She said leaving him.

He didn't react to it in any way if he had heard. His mind focused on sensing the light. It was bright, brighter than before. He needed to end it. Search: something, anything. The lands stretching under the rain was bare of life. He cursed under his breath.

"There has to be someone left alive, something, and anything." Thoughts raced thought the wizards mind.

After what felt like hours of searching he smirked, finally he found something he use.

The innkeeper brought their food and some bread in a cloth wrap.

"I'm afraid that's all I can spear. There is a food shortage across the country. Crops just won't grow and the animals are dying off. "

"It's alright, thank you." Ermina said.

"Say, the two of you wouldn't happen to be traveling to Garland?"

"What makes you think that?" Val tensed a little bit.

"Oh well, we're near the border so...i thought. Never mind. It's just I've hear that the famous art thief Black Iris was going to steal a painting from a museum tonight. I thought maybe you were going to watch. It's usually quite the spectacle. "

"Art thief?" Ermina looked at Val confused.

Val just shook her head.

They rushed back to the airship. Making sure no one saw them before giving the signal to drop down the ladder. A floating rope ladder would have caused suspicion, but thankfully there weren't any people in the deep woods.

"Oz, we might have a problem!" Val said once she was back on board the airship.

They retold what the innkeeper had told them. Ozwen seemed concerned by this.

"I've hear of this thief. The first one appeared around eighty years ago and stole primarily archeological artefacts. There was also a woman going by that name. it's been a while since the last one. But they all had something in common: sending out warning about where and what they would be stealing before they stole it. None of them were ever caught. Did he mention what painting the thief was after?"

"I think he said it was "The Mother in the Garden". Ermina said.

"I see. The Kings favorite painting. This is bad." Ozwen's face shoved his concern. "of all the nights, it had to be tonight."

"We need to warn Ciel not to go tonight." Ermina said. "Sebastian can fly to the city and find him."

"That won't help." Val said. "if he's using the mask to be invisible."

"Still, we need to warn him."

"I fear that we won't make it." Ozwen said." Even if we were to leave now the best we could hope for is midnight. And by then it might be too late."

"But we can't just wait here." Val objected.

"No." Oz agreed" Ciel is our only hope of breaking this curse. If he is caught and mistaken for the thief the king might have him executed on the spot. The royal army will most likely be called into action. "

"To catch a thief?" Ermina said surprised.

"A thief that has eluded capture for eighty years and had been a thorn in the side of the royal family. Yes, the king would spare no expense to have them brought to justice."

While they were having a conversation two Garland airships flew over them. The group stopped all conversation and stood frozen in place. The ships passed without noticing them- the invisibility spell on the ship concealed it and those on board.

"Looks like they have recalled ships from border patrols. Most likely for tonight." Oz said looking the direction the ships went.

"What can we do?" Val asked.

"I need a moment to think." He began pacing the deck once again.

"Well if he can remain invisible maybe he will be alright." Ermina said.

"Unlikely." Oz said. "The room will seal itself in a barrier preventing exit. While I am certain the Sword of Avalon would cut through it this would alert all the force outside on the other hand if the soldiers arrive and see an empty room they will be suspicious and probably open fire on the room. The mask makes him invisible not invulnerable. Even with his enhanced healing I doubt he would make out of there in one piece. "

"What can we do?" Now Ermina was getting worried.

"We can buy him some time. Create a distraction. If the forces are focused on something else perhaps it will buy Ciel time to escape. This is the best we could hope for. "

Ozwen went to steering room to update Sam and Gamgee on the new situation.

Ciel looked around the street. The number of people was slowly increasing as night drew closer. Soldiers in uniform were walking past the square where the museum was. He was thankful for the invisibility the mask provided. Walking in to the museum the second time was even easier. He decided to wait inside until it closed and the building was empty. This left him enough time to come up with a plan of escaping the museum once he had the cloak. First he thought about using the sword to slice his way out of the barrier, but it was risky. First it would make noise, two he could injure a person on the other side of the wall and third he had not used the sword since it had been freed from the curse. So he decided to wait until people came to investigate the alarm and use the mask's invisibility to sneak out with the cloak. To enter the room the berried would have to be disabled at least on one side. It was a simple plan, one he hoped was enough to win over the spirit of the cloak. Ciel would have preferred a trial by combat- something he was accustomed to. Things like stealth and sneaking around were not his strong suites.

Sitting in the farthest corner of the exhibit room he waited and listened. People walked by, soldiers in uniform, families, single men and women. The royal treasure exhibit wasn't getting much attention. But he could hear footsteps, a lot of them going somewhere else. Despite his curiosity he remained where he was. It was hard to tell what time of day it was but the distant ringing of bells helped. Finally there were no more footsteps for a while and the bells rung ten times. It was closing time for the museum.

Ciel stood up, stretching his stiff arm. Sitting for hours in one spot was difficult on the muscles. Just as he finished stretching a group of people walked past the entrance arch. Ciel froze in panic, before remembering no one could see him. He took a better look at them. Soldiers, and they had riffles with them. They marched down the hall into a different section of the museum. Ciel felt a pit form in his stomach. Something was going on, something he knew nothing about. He didn't want to fight the soldiers, after all they were only men. If the alarm were to go off now they would rush into the room. This was turning into the most difficult trial yet. He was contemplating leaving and coming back the next night. But he wasn't sure if the soldiers were a regular thing or not. Perhaps this was something that happened every night. With so many royal relics the presence of soldiers didn't seem strange to Ciel. While he was pondering what to do the whole building shook as the sound of an explosion rattle the windows.

Voices yelled in the hall and soldiers came running outside. Ciel smiled to himself- now was the perfect chance.

"Can't you work any faster?" Ozwen said, frustration evident in his voice.

Sam was screwing massive screws into the deck of the airship.

"I'm working as fast as I can."

"Personally, I don't think it's such a good idea." Gamgee said exiting the house with a bow full of brown cloth wrapper objects.

"I don't care what you think." Ozwen retorted." Do what I say. If we lose him humanity, this world- it's all done for."

"Aye, aye." Gamgee responded placing the box on the deck and going over to help his brother.

"Cannons are attached." The brothers soon reported.

"Good, prepare for takeoff." Ozwen ordered.

"It's a good thing we kept those from gramps's adventures." Gamgee said looking over their work.

"Let's go and save master Ciel." Sam said giving Oz a confident smile.

The ship creaked and struggled under the added weight but took off, leaving the remote home of the brothers.

As they were heading for Garland at full speed they noticed several other air ships.

"What should we do.?" Sam asked.

"Slow down and pretend to be returning like the rest." Ozwen said.

"One of the ships appears to be changing course." Gamgee reported looking thought the monocular.

"Keep your course. Remain calm. "

An airship was indeed approaching them. It evened it's speed with theirs and the two were flying side by side with just a small gap between.

"Hey, is anyone on board?!" came a shout from the outside.

Val walked out on deck.

"What seems to be problem?"

The man looked her over

"I don't recognize you? Who are you?" he began drawing his sword.

Other members of the crew were drawing weapons.

"I think you know were well who we are" Ozwen said emerging on deck.

"Well, looks like the jig is up." Sam said.

"Sure is." Gamgee looked at his brother.

"So do you want to do it? Or should I?"

"Let's do it together."

"Whose gonna drive then?" Gamgee asked.

"Alright then, you do it."

The man looked at Ozwen for a moment as if trying to recognize him. Meanwhile Gamgee ran to the front of the ship trying to stay of sight.

"You're that traitor!" The man said pointing his sword at Oz. "Men, arrest them."

As they were preparing to jump over to their ship, Sam turned the wheel causing it to turn away. Ozwen and Val barely managed to hang on. The ship turned away as if it was running and all the men scrambled to their stations to pursue them. To everyone's surprise the airship began turning again. Gamgee cut the rope and the flag unrolled under the balloon, holding the ship in the air. The front of the airship was now decorated with a black flag depicting a skull and crossed bones. Ozwen scoffed at it.

"Prepare to retaliate." He ordered.

Gamgee rushed over to the cannon. Val set of the other one whit a fire spell. The Garland airship that was pursuing them had gotten too close to avoid the attack. The cannon shots hit the sides of the ship. Gamgee waived his mechanical gauntlets in the air out of joy.

"Well so much for discretion." Val said walking to the front of the ship.

The airship that was hit began descending down to the ground.

"We took out their cannons so they couldn't fire back." Gamgee said happily.

"It seems the other one noticed "Val pointed to the other airship that was further away but now turned around and was moving closer.

"We will get nowhere if we're stuck fighting every airship we come across. " Ozwen said. "Tell Ermina to hurry up."

"No need. I'm finished with preparations. " She said coming down from the back deck.

"Good, but first, we'll need to clear the way." Ozwen pointed to the airship approaching them.

"Aye, aye" Gamgee moved to reload the cannons.

Ciel slowly took of the mask and walked over to the cloak. Reaching out his hand over restriction line and grabbing the front of it. And lifting of the mannequin it was placed on. There was a loud noise and the whole room began to glow as a yellow light surrounded it, closing off both entrance arches and the windows. Ciel took out his sword. He heard some people running back into the building. Drawing the sword, for the first time without pain he swung it at the window. The air rippled with swing, the yellow berried shattered into pieces and so did the glass of the windows. Focusing his magic he jumped up out the shattered window. There was another explosion and now he could see the cause. An airship was flying over the city, shooting cannons and someone was dropping explosives, but they would explode before hitting the ground. The pirate flag at the front of the ship gave him some idea as to who was responsible for this.

"Well I took you outside the museum." Ciel said, addressing the spirit of the cloak.

"You did. " The man appeared" My name is Kasasagi1. In the past I've watched over thieves and those who possess a free spirit but I will serve you, hero."

With swift move Ciel removed his ragged black cloak and put on the white one, just at the soldiers rounded the corner and spotted him. His body seemed to become weightless at it floated up towards the ship. He landed on the deck surprising everyone.

"What are all of you doing here?" He asked confused.

"We came to get you." Val said turning around after setting off another bomb.

Ozwen explained the situation to him.

"Thank you. " Ciel said."

While he felt his friends were putting themselves in unnecessary danger for his sake, he kept quiet.

"We should leave the city."

"I agree" Ozwen said" However that might be a lot more difficult. Ermina used up a lot of her magic on a spell to get us here faster.

Suddenly Ciel felt a chill run down his spine. It was like somebody was watching him. Something was drawing closer.

The ship turned around and began moving towards the Inwales boarder, but they still had a long way to go. The cannons while providing the ship a means of defense did so at the cost of speed. Gamgee while exited to live his and his brothers dream of playing pirate, originally opposed this. The deck boards were creaking and protesting under the weight of the cannons. If they gave out it would all be over.

"Master, I sense something coming" Ciel said looking into the darkness of the night.

Ozwen looked at the same direction trying to pick up a trace.

"Oh, something is coming alright!" Sam yelled pointing to the palace.

A large airship, reinforced with metal was rising up into the air.

"A warship" Ozwen recognized it.

"Wait you mean they plan to use it against us?" Gamgee looked at his brother in disbelief.

"Well do you see anyone else?"

"There!" Ciel pointed north.

A black mass was moving, blacker than the dark clouds of the cursed rain. Moving closer towards them.

"This is bad." Sam said." Real bad."

"We're stuck."

Ciel looked at Ozwen

"I'll clear the way for you."

"Right, we'll try to hold out against the warship." Ozwen said.

Val made a move to stop him on the way out. Ciel embraced her, kissing her on the forehead before placing the mask on and vanishing from sight. Unseen he stepped off the ship but instead of falling just floated in the air. The wind whistling as he flew towards the approaching dark mass in the sky. He could hear it now, the sound of what could be a thousand birds – crows. Larger than the normal birds, eyes red, beaks long and sharp. Stopping while there was still some distance between them he focused on casting a lightning spell. Being hit such a number of birds, even if they could not see him, could be problematic. The cloak ripping was another possibility on his mind.

"Don't worry. This isn't some flimsy cloak. "Kasasagi appeared beside him floating in the air." It won't just rip from something like this."

"Good to know." Ciel sent the spell at the birds.

Lightning flashed and many of them fell from the sky, hitting the ground. But the overall size of the mass did not decrease. The birds were aiming at him, fast ones have reached him and tried to stab him with their beaks and slash with their talons. Up close he could see just how much they were altered by the curse, equal to him height almost, with their wings spread they looked even bigger. Taking the sword he swung at the fast approaching bird. The sword cut it and blood poured at the half of the bird fell to the ground. Meanwhile few others were attacking from up above and from behind. Noticing this he realized there wasn't enough time to react. A strong gust of wind sent the birds back. Ciel looked surprised as Kasasagi and the woman with the butterfly like mask appeared.

"Kasasagi, Madam," he was surprised.

"This is the first time in almost six hundred years that I've have a chance to see so action." Kasasagi said" I am not going to let it end this soon."

The woman in a beautiful light dark blue and black gown smiled, her lips being the only par the mask didn't cover.

"I will aid you, as such our agreement."

Ciel had taken to calling her Madam Butterfly, due to her mask. The spirit had never been given a name by its previous owners.

"Thank you both" He said.

Meanwhile on board the airship Ozwen and the others were trying to figure out an escape plan.

"We should try to get around the birds." Sam said.

"I agree, master Ciel seems to having trouble clearing the way." Gamgee said.

"If we wait any longer the warship will be close enough to blow us to pieces." Val said.

Ozwen was silent.

"You can't be thinking of fighting that thing, Oz" Val said with fear evident in her voice.

"No." he spoke after a long silence." I just wonder if I made a mistake when I decided to interfere."

Everyone went silent.

"On our way we saw many airships, with the spells effect we could out run them. Where are they now?" He wondered." Probably somewhere close. If we run blindly we will run into them. Ermina is still asleep from casting the spell and I no longer have Nimue. "

"Stop talking like this is all over!" Val raised her voice." Sam, get us out of here."

"Yes, ma'am."

The airship turned,, flying away from approaching warship. Following the seemingly endless mass of birds, blocking their way to Inwales.

"There has to be an opening somewhere." Val gazed out the window.

Ciel was fighting, unseen, but she could see the birds dashing and swiping at the air while more of them kept coming from all directions.

Then something happened that no one expected. The warship attacked, sending a liquid burst out of one of it's cannons. The liquid quickly ignited setting many of the birds on fire.

"Ciel!" Val called out, even thought he was too far to hear her.

"That was, Arcadian weaponry." Ozwen's voice trembled in shock from the realization" they were able to recreate it. "

"We have to stop that thing, Ciel is in there!" Val pleaded with Sam.

"Alright. I'll do my best. After all if master Ciel dies, we're all goners."

Ciel felt the heat scorching his back but if didn't hit him directly. Turning around he could see the warship approaching, it seems that for some reason they decided to target the birds inserted of pursuing the others. He felt better knowing he had help, but since they couldn't see him he needed to be carefull.

"I'm alright. Escape." He sent the message to Ozwen.

Another burst of fire came too close to where he was. Ciel tried to go higher but a bunch of the birds attacked him from above, pushing him down into the range of fire of the warship.

"He wants us to escape." Ozwen said. "He will be fine.

Val looked at him skeptically.

"Well it is fighting the birds." Sam added." So they are on the same side."

"No they're not." Gamgee pointed to the deck holding the monocle" look"

Ozwen took the monocle and began looking at the deck of the warship. There was somebody out there, by the cannons. A person, yet he couldn't see their face, or skin it was all black, he couldn't differentiate between what was uniform and what was skin. Garland bright red uniforms had a tendency to stand out even from a distance.

"Something is wrong on that ship." Oz agreed.

"We have to take it out." Val stated.

Oz gave the deck of the warship another look. Black smoke seemed to coming off of one of the people on deck.

"They're not human up there. I've hear rumor about king Garland buying up all remnants of Arcadian war technology and even the cursed undead that appeared with the rain. To think the rumors were true. I wonder if the King is even alive at this point. "Ozwen lowered the monocle with a sigh.

"I have a plan." Gamgee said.

Ciel barely managed to avoid the burst of flame that came out of the cannon. The fire hit some of the birds. Strangely they seemed to know when the ship was going to fire and tried to push Ciel into its line of fire. He found it strange, but the constant attacks he had keep avoiding didn't leave much time for fought. The amount of birds and attacks coming from all sides made the invisibility almost useless. Suddenly he hear a voice in his head, it was Ozwen.

"I don't know if this is reaching you. But that warship is controlled by undead. I don't know what's going on. Please return to the ship."

Ciel looked over his shoulder at the giant ship. If he went back to his friends would they notice? Or would it keep firing at the birds? But losing the birds would be difficult. Some would follow him and that could give away where he was.

"Madam, please remove the invisibility. I have an idea."

He became visible, a white radiant spot against the black mass of birds. The ships cannons immediately adjusted to his location. The mass birds swirled as seemingly every single one of them now were aiming for him. He waited, closer, even closer, the birds close enough to touch him. He turned around and flew directly at the cannons making sure to stay in the line of fire. He could see the red as the ignition was beginning the moment it left the cannon. He dove down, just barely avoiding the flame. The smell of burning flesh and feathers permeated the air. This didn't take all of the birds down, but had reduced their numbers.

He wouldn't be able to go invisible again. Not until he had enough time to write the command on the mask. There wasn't enough time for such things now. He could take down the warship, a few swings of the sword would be enough. But looking down all he could see were rows of houses and the city streets. If a warship, full flammable and explosive materials crashed down the whole city might end up in flames.

"We need to lure them away from the city, somewhere more open." Ciel telepathically reached out to Oz.

"Understood" came the reply.

Ciel dodged some birds, then used the sword to slash them as they tried to chase him. The spirits were helping, using wind spells to stop the bird's attacks or prevent them from escaping. Ciel felt both his and their magic draining. While his injuries healed, it still drained his magic.

"The river, lead them to the river." Ozwen's voice rang in his head.

Ciel dove down below the ship and then flew towards the large lake the river was flowing into. The city wall encircled the lace, with a special gate that allowed the river to flow but prevented attacks by water coming in. He had to wait unto the ship was over the water to bring it down.

Ozwen and the others flowed the warship that began moving towards the lake. The swarm of giant crows continued to pursue Ciel. He swung his sword and the birds seemed to farm a wall, getting in the way.

"They're protecting the ship?!" Val said in disbelief.

The warship was above the water but Ciel was having a hard time bringing it down. The Birds got in the way of the attacks.

"He will tire himself out like this." Ozwen said." I think that is what they are after. "

"How can undead plan and organize like this?" Val asked.

"I was reluctant to believe it, but now it seems to be true. Ciel said he believed that there was human factor controlling the curse."

"A human? Somebody is doing all this?" Gamgee and Sam looked at the scene happening in front of them.

"Well then, looks like it up to us to take that thing down." Gamgee said.

Sam nodded.

Ciel heard a loud shot behind him. He saw the airship, tiny compared to the warship. The cannons on deck fired at the giant ship, not doing it much damage, but diverting the attention of the crew that prepared to fire back. Fear gripped his heart. What were they thinking? He wanted to stop them but the birds following him prevented it. He felt anger. He needed to end this now. Lightning wasn't doing enough damage. If only he could lure the birds into another fire attach from the ship, he was certain it would eradicate almost all of them.

Val and Ozwen were holding up a barrier, to stop the cannons of the warship from blowing up the airship. The brothers said they had a plan but wouldn't tell them what it was. One cannon ball stopped at the barrier, the second missed the ship, and the other grazed the side.

"We won't last long like this." Ozwen said. "That plan of theirs better work."

Ciel cast a fire spell. It was simple one. The birds gathered around him. The warship seemed focused on attacking his friends in the airship. This allowed him to focus on the fighting more. Madam and Kasasagi sending wind into the flames and creating a sphere of fire around him. The flames extended outwards consuming the birds. He could feel the last his magic drain praying that this was enough to take care of the birds. The sky seemed clear, at least for now. He flew back towards the airship, taking a swing at the giant ship with the sword. One of the cannons exploded sending flames across the deck. The undead didn't react, instead remaining at their stations and preparing to fire another round.

"Come on I'll get you out of here," he said landing on deck.

The airship rocked as the cannon fire hit the side again. The war ship seemed to be turning around, the cannons in its front being the ones that shot the flaming liquid.

"You can't carry all of us by yourself." Val said.

"I'll carry you all out, then I'll take it down with the sword. We can use the airship as a decoy for the moment." Ciel said.

He was out of breath from the fight. Ozwen carried an unconscious Ermina on Deck.

"Get her and Val out of here. "

"I'll come back and get everyone out." He said.

Ciel held Ermina in his arms, Val wrapped her arms around him from behind. He flew down into the street just as another attack hit the airship. Ozwen couldn't hold a large barrier by himself and the attack went though. The deck splintered as a giant hole appeared from the impact in it. The weight shifted and the airship began leaning to the left. The warship was still turning being slow and heavy. Ciel flew up back to the airship.

"Come on professor, Sam, Gamgee. "

Sam poked his head over the steering wheel.

"I appreciate the kindness, master Ciel, but a captain always goes down with the ship."

"Our plan is ready. " Gamgee emerged with some barrels and boxes.

He started loading them all at the front of the ship.

"Wait, you don't plan to?" Ozwen's eyes widened in realization.

"We're going to hit it with all we got."

"But you will die in the explosion."

"Somebody has to drive the ship. " Sam said.

"And I can't imagine life without him" Gamgee said." You're going to save the world, so let us be the heroes just this once."

"You don't need to sacrifice you're selves." Ciel said, his voice pleading.

"We want to do it." Sam said.

"We grew up listening to Uncle Sid's stories. We dreamed of living though heroic battle he told us about. This is our only chance to live that dream."

Ciel felt tears well up in his eyes. The two brothers had reminded him of himself.

"I'm sorry" he said.

With a smith move he knocked out Gamgee and got up to where Sam was, knocking him out. Pulling the unconscious pilot over his shoulder he turned the wheel so the airship moved forward to the larger ship that was done turning around and was preparing to fire. Grabbing Gamgee he told Ozwen to hold on to him. The weight was pulling him own but he managed to float down from the airship when the attack hit. The airship had been moving towards the warship and the attack ignited the gunpowder and the bombs the brothers had stacked up in the front. The explosion was enough to blow off some of the metal armor of the ship and set the other side of in fire as well. The undead kept living until the curse keeping them alive was broken, so they cared little for the fire. Another explosion, the flammable liquid in the cannons caught fire. The airship was going down slowly pushing the warship down as well.

Ciel carried everyone over the wall one at a time to avoid detection from the soldiers that were gathering around the lake. It seems they were safe for now.

A dark laugh echoed thought the dark and empty streets of Argos. At the tallest tower of the palace Tenebros stood in the balcony laughing. He could feel the minions he sent were all eradicated. The light he sought to extinguish was now even brighter. Yet it filled him with glee. After all a victory with no challenge was not a real victory. He left the room, climbing the steps unto the large balcony. Drops of rain landing on his white robes and leaving black traces, until his robes and mask turned as black as the sky.

1 Kasasagi means magpie in Japanese.