“Have you ever heard of the song, called Chop Suey?” Vor said as he casually pulled off Bronze’s arm.
“Vor,” Cellasia said, barely containing the urge to cry in her voice. “Explain yourself. What is going on?”
“That’s clearly not Vor,” Michael said.
Vor laughed a hard, demonic laugh. “Angels deserve to die. God, I love that song! It’s like a national anthem.” He bit off a piece of the arm and wildly chewed. “I can’t believe you simpletons haven’t noticed. Of course I’m Vor and you idiots had no idea that I lived among you for years, actually an angel. Well, fallen angel, I guess. The universe made me fall but I hid it well. Did you know angels are tasty treats?” He laughed again.
“That is impossible,” Michael said, somehow remaining calm.
Vor simply started singing horribly. “I…cry…when angels deserve to dieeeee.” An arrow rushed toward the Fallen, landing into the center of his forehead. Vor didn’t even flinch, maniacal grin on his face. “Ah, Lady Amelia, I want to taste you.”
Before I knew it, I jabbed Ruin into the Fallen’s heart. I didn’t know I could move at this impossible speed without my locked states.
The Fallen simply batted me away like an insect. I held onto Ruin as I flew backward, hitting the wall hard. I fought to stay conscious. The racket began, everyone moving on to attack. Ranging from gunfire to arrows beings knocked and fired, and sword clings. As I got back up to my feet, I heard Jade scream.
“Get him off, get him off,” she cried. I tried to quick-ascend, but my low power tank simply did not support the ability. I settled for running over to meet the monster head on the old-fashioned way. I stopped when Jade’s scream become sickening then…. crunches.
Amelia’s wail of fury in her divine-state nearly burst my eardrums. Her wrath was overwhelming. Yet, crunch, crunch, crunch! What were we thinking, letting the humans enter this mess? Sure, their faith allowed Amelia to enter the divine state. And the closer they are, the more powerful it is—and originally with a fight against Michael, we needed all we could muster.
I begin to hate myself. This shit was my fault. One of Amelia’s best friends, basically her sister, paid for it in the most gruesome way possible. I needed to fix this.
“Get them outside,” I said as I approached the scene, heavenly-light rotating around me like a tornado. Michael, Xavier, and Amelia were locked in combat with the Fallen. Vor laughed as he easily fended them off with some kind of martial art combined with his wings for full defense. He also munched on a naked leg.
“Let’s go,” Amony said to the Amelia’s tearful friends.
“No,” they said. “We won’t leave her, even if it costs our lives.”
“Get going,” I snarled. “She wouldn’t want you to be in here, over your heads with a goddamn Fallen. If you really want to help, pray with your hearts out. I will make sure the bastard pays for what he did.”
Amelia’s friends didn’t argue with me. As they turned to run, the Fallen did the unthinkable.
He knocked Michael away, dodged Xavier, bashed away Selina who had joined the fight, smacked Amelia down and then leapt, landing on top of Amanda. She screamed and flailed to no avail.
I tried to tackle the Fallen, but was rewarded with another bitch-slap with his wing instead. I thought it was over for the poor girl but just in time, Sin’s blade slipped right into Vor’s skull. The Fallen simply laughed.
“You’re not really half-devil,” he said. “I can smell something greater on you.”
Before Sin could strike again, the Fallen quick-ascended behind him, grabbed him, and soared into the air, right through the roof. The entire thing collapsed. Michael erected winds just in time, preventing all of the brick from crushing us. Seconds later, Sin crashed to the ground, groaning, but alive.
“Well, I guess this answers the old question on whether the Fallen is just limited to angels,” I said.
“Vor was never a god,” Cellasia said. “He—”
Her statement was interrupted by Amelia launching into the air after the Fallen.
“Shit, let’s go. There’s no way she can fight that thing by herself.”
Michael launched into the air after her. Sin stood up, dusting himself off.
“Are you still able to fight?” I asked him.
“That was nothing but a cheap shot,” he said.
I noticed a lot of aura surrounding Devante. as he muttered something repeatedly. Within a half-second, he vanished. Amony, Selina, Elly, Amanda, Cellasia and Keisha were scampering outside. Sin and I joined them.
I arrived just in time to see Devante yell, “watch out.” Michael and Amelia moved as Devante unleashed a large black beam of energy. The Fallen laughed as he blocked the spell with his wing.
“I shall act in the stead of the angel of vengeance that will eventually come to collect her debt,” Vor said then quick-ascended in front of the sorcerer. Devante vanished before the Fallen had the chance to end him. The Fallen spat. “Since when did humans have the ability to quick-ascend.”
Devante reappeared beside Amony. “Your turn, boss.” Amony held out both of her hands toward the Fallen.
Streaks of purple power bashed into Vor but did nothing. Cellasia fired her green beams. The Fallen angel casually walked toward us, two vampire-like fangs slightly visible in his smile. Amelia, Selina, Xavier, and Michael took that as a cue to engage him again.
“Shit, how do we kill it?” I asked Amony.
“I don’t know,” she said. “This is why we wanted to get rid of Sunset and prevent the attraction. I can imagine that your girlfriend and her friends were in this town for a similar reason.”
“I still got chills from the fucker,” I said as I manifested a sniper rifle and a marker. I drew three mini deity-trappers on it.
“Give me that,” Amanda said. “You don’t have the training for it.” She surprised me by dropping into a prone position, taking aim, firing, and hitting the Fallen with all six shots. Vor quick-ascended right in front of us.
“Remind me never to think of bad ideas,” I said.
“I’m still hungry,” Vor said as he grabbed Amanda by the throat.
Amelia, Selina, and Michael quick-ascended too late as he jumped into the air, dodging my tackle. Amanda struggled, fighting with all of her might but the Fallen was just too strong. He purposely dropped her. “You know, there’s a soulless joke somewhere, but that would be beneath me.” Vor laughed.
Amelia caught her friend. Michael and Selina soared after Vor. Selina’s wings were a glistening purple color, specks of heavenly-light poking around them like sparkles. She fought with a katana. Her and Michael’s blades had no goddamn effect on the Fallen. Vor simply blocked their strikes with his freaking wings. Wings! How the hell could we kill him?
“You know, I’m really sick of running into assholes that are way stronger than me,” I said then turned to Sin. “There’s got to be something we can do.”
“Oh, you mean like hit him harder,” Sin said.
“Good to see that you’re the same smartass, even in the face of a monster,” I said.
“Well, on the bright side we can watch the great Michael bite it first.” He laughed. I simply glared at him.
“If Michael can’t—”
A cloud of mist formed around us. Within seconds, a familiar woman with long black hair, piecing red eyes, and short dress made of thick mist appeared in front of me.
“Don’t act surprised,” Misty said. “I managed to get back to the realm of mist just in time.”
“Well, coming back wasn’t smart of you,” I said. “Look.”
“I noticed,” she said. “That’s why I had to come back, to see one for myself.”
“As you can see, your highness, it’s unkillable,” Sin said, frustration his voice.
“So not even the Archangel can defeat one of these things,” Misty said softly. Her question was answered at that moment when Michael and Selina crashed down in a downright comical heap. Vor quick-ascended right in front of Misty.
“Well, well, a new buffet item?” He licked his lips. Before Misty could react, he was gone, quick-ascending to Amanda again. Fortunately, we were prepared for his next jab at her this time. Devante and Amony unleashed everything they had at the Fallen, point blank. He laughed as he leapt back, undamaged.
“This is too much,” Misty said. “However…” She raised a hand into the air. Streaks of light manifested around it. Three fiery-red orbs surrounded the Fallen then exploded seconds later. Vor still laughed maniacally. He pointed at her. A half-second later, it flickered with purplish light before unleashing a lightning-like death beam. The misthanger queen’s fog thickened to an almost solid state. She stepped to the side, only getting grazed.
“Weak, weak, weak, weak, weak, weak, weak,” Vor chanted like some idiotic frat boy.
“There’s just no way one being can take all of this damage,” Misty said.
“I grow tired of this. I just want to eat in peace now,” Vor said. The purplish light brightened around him. “Angels deserve to dieeeeee.” He pointed a finger gun at me, of all people. Before he unleashed his attack, purple balls of energy swarmed him. To my surprise, Vor frowned. “You fucking bitch.” Elly flipped him off then continued her assault. Vor didn’t flinch this time. He held up a hand. The others didn’t seem to notice the enormous charge of energy in the air.
“Get down!” I yelled but it was too late.
A mix of force and power expanded from the Fallen like a supernova explosion. A furious swarm of pain, thick smoke, and oranges covered my vision and senses. The smoke quickly cleared to reveal Vor, walking over to Amelia, wicked grin on his face.
“I will taste. I will taste. I will consume.” He laughed maniacally. I tried to get up, but my body fought against me with severe pain. Everyone else was in the same state, stunned, and injured. He picked up Amelia by the throat, pleased look on his face. The sick fuck licked her arm. “Wow, you taste great. I’ll bite you into little pieces and chew you slow and methodically. Come on, more fear, I need that flavor in my meals, wench.”
I was panicking.
Come on, Epex, think. If you can’t use brute force against an opponent with overwhelming power, then use your brain. You know, the brain that’s supposed to house brilliances. I looked at the sky, eyes widening as the idea came to me. I focused all of the remaining ounces of power into sky and made it rain.
I turned back to see Vor open his mouth to take a bite out of my goddess. Come on, please work! Someone spoke in a condescending, calm voice.
“What are you doing to my daughter, Vor?”
A woman, whose intense beauty I can’t describe, appeared beside the Fallen. She was dressed in a long, glowing-white dress. Long blonde hair and the same eyes as her daughter, she glared at Vor. Both gold and silver heavenly-light outlined Amelia’s mother.
“Well, well, now, that’s bad for me,” Vor said, with a chuckle. “Who invited the scary grown-up to the buffet?” He dropped Amelia.
“Perish,” Mother Nature said.
Vor laughed. “Yeah, no.” He ascended at a speed faster than I’ve ever seen.
“Fuck, we do not need crazies like him getting away,” I hissed.
Mother Nature only gave me a dark, one-second glance, but let me tell you, it made Conus’s ice-cold glare seem like a heartwarming smile.
“He cannot escape me,” she said. “The earth is my domain.” The rain stopped and to my amazement Vor fell out of the sky. Before he could move, Mother Nature aimed at hand at him.
He incinerated, a squeal being his last breath.
Mother Nature looked at me.
“Please make my death painless,” I said quickly. Her eyes widened then she burst into laughter. It was heavenly, literally, as its healing waves spread everywhere.
“Son-in-law,” she said, then grinned mischievously. “Ah yes, I can feel the intense love for my daughter, at least completing the bond.” She walked over to me. “I will forgive you for tampering with my weather system, for it saved all of you. Quick thinking, I must say. Fallen are nasty creatures, and one must be trained to actually fight them. A knight, which none of you are. So, could you kindly explain to me what’s going on?” She helped me stand. “You sure have grown, Epex.” She turned to Amelia.
“You’re embarrassing me, Mom,” she said, with a laugh, then hugged her.
I unloaded my story on Mother Nature. She nodded. “You’ve probably figured it out, Epex, but there is a corrupt seed somewhere in the House of Judgment. A seed formed by an ancient enemy. You were supposed to be granted a pardon some time ago, but it was negated and with presented reasons. I will look into this further and see if either my husband or any other clan head can locate the party behind this. As for Vor, a Fallen living right under our noses is a frightening thing. I will launch an investigation to track down any other possible threats in Paradise Realm. Just be warned, Epex, hunters will continue to be sent by the House to track you down. You will have to deal with them on your own until then.” Mother Nature turned to Michael. “I trust that you will leave without any further intervention.”
“Of course,” Michael said. “I had no knowledge of corruption in Paradise Realm. I have to report the Fallen to the King, but it is your universe, so it will be up to you to deal with them.” He turned to Cellasia and Xavier. “I will report this event to your chain of command and then have you removed from the active hunters for a break. You will deny any hunts for Epex.” The two nodded then ascended off. Michael looked at me. “May the King’s blessing be upon you.” He ascended.
“I must be going,” Mother Nature said. “But we have to have a talk soon. I want to start planning the wedding—”
“Mom!” Amelia said, embarrassment in her voice. Mother Nature smiled.
“Stop by and visit more, my daughter.” She ascended in a flashy light show. The big shots loved doing this. I turned to Amelia and embraced her. She finally cried, holding me tight. I would be there for her as she mourned her friend. Her human sister.
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Alvin Atwater is a man of humor, a starving author. With a unique writing style that can outshine even Jim Butcher, Patria Briggs, or Kevin Hearne (It's a joke. These are among my favorite authors) , he is a character-driven lovable lump of mass. Born in Florida, he's on a mission to defeat his arch nemesis, Florida Man, once and for all.
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