The moment they entered the their room, team Phantom was set to getting their proper equipment as well as strapping on their armor.
In the left corner Mulengu was helping Ursa fix her armor on while Thor was aided by Pyrrha.
Watching them all like this Chris couldn't help but feel a swell of pride in his unit. He went to working on his foreleg guard and looked to Ursa who was once again as closed in as a turtle.
Chris began to study her closely and she looked to be straggling to stand upright properly as she would sway from side to side as if brains balancing system was going haywire.
With a heavy sigh he walked towards her and coughed to get her attention. Ursa looked at him with her now cold and lifeless eye's, this was enough for him to make up his mind.
As he opened his mouth and before so much as s sound had been presented Ursa spoke in a rather cold and sharp tone of voice.
"You are not going to bench me on this one".
" What?" Chris was going to say that but how did she know.
"I am seeing this mission off until the end" she glared at him while her fist tightened and Chris could see the others looking on in great interest.
He looked into her eyes and Chris shuddered for they looked to be holding a storm that was close to breaking through. All in all Chris could only describe her with one world "Unhinged ".
He decided to relax his body signature, in order to calm her down "Look, Ursa...".
" No, you look Ddraig " she got even closer to his face and Chris could feel her hot breath in his face " There is too much on the line and i just came to the realisation that we are not as good as we think we are, so i am not going to let a chance to get stronger pass me by. Got it!".
Chris just nodded in defeat as Ursa left to return to fixing on her armor. He looked at the others and just shrugged, he had tried after all.
Chris was about to finish the works on his breastplate when he felt something vibrating very fast in his left pocket. Reaching for said pocket he managed to grab a crystal and he pulled out the echo.
From the tap of his armored finger, the screen turned from a white crystal surface and into a live image of the both of his sister's with the exception of the youngest materialized.
"Hey, good morning" he greeted them before he looked up to speak to his team "Its my sister's, i should take this".
"You will find us at the hive" Pyrrha answered him as she led the team out of the room leaving him alone.
Chris placed his echo on his bed and tapped it once more. That single tap cast a hologram in front of him, showing his sister's in their real size.
"It's been a while" he hadn't seen them in day's since his arrival at the fort "You guy's have to be quick because i kind of have a mission now".
"Oh, look at my cute little brother " Ishtar mock cried "Going out on big missions and putting on his big boy pants".
Chris felt his face fall as he made his voice devoid of any emotion "I am going to turn this off woman and then i never ever talk to you again".
"Don't be so mean Chrissy" Ishtar stuck her tongue out at him.
"Oh, real mature Ishtar" his older sibling behaving like a child was not something he needed right now.
"Yeah... Chrissy" Joan snickered as she spoke and Chris wished Venus was here "Don't be mean to you're sister's".
He wished that he could be speaking to Venus. At least his younger sister would always take his side in such matters.
"That's it" he was close to turning off the thing just to teach them a lesson but Joan stopped him.
"Hey, hey, hey just wait a moment pouty!".
"Then just talk normally, please" Chris didn't want to keep the other's waiting for too long "I am kind of running late on something".
"Fine" the two girls pouted and Ishtar regained some amount of seriousness which for the first time Chris was glad about.
"Uncle Kay wants us to give you an official invitation to Camelot for some training" Joan answered his question.
It wasn't that Chris disliked Kay or even his company most if the time, but the mans invitation was a bit confusing. He had thought Kay would invite them to new Camelot after it's construction was complete.
"I don't know, all he said was some nonsense about wanting us to see our mom's kingdom as it should be and something about children of Camelot needing to fight with style of Camelot. something like that" Joan explained to him.
"He does know that i am at work here right?".
Chris was pretty sure he couldn't just leave the Iron Fortress whenever he wanted. Even their talks with the top administration brass of the fort about Ursa's family problem had been extremely difficult to properly navigate, thanks to Sycamore who was at her most antagonist there.
"Look, maybe we can all just do this so that Kay and his knights don't feel left out of the family and don't sound like adding a different fighting style to skill set isn't a good thing".
Joan had a point about that. While Morigan was a great teacher, he had learned on earth that adding different skills to your set made you a better fighter.
" I will think about it" he answered her.
"Whatever, i have to go. Have fun brother" Joan declared before her hologram vanished.
He took the echo and turned off the hologram but the audio remained "So how have thing's been going on your side?".
"Go dark" Ishtar told him and Chris reached for another crystal in his pocket that he placed into his right ear.
The words go dark were a signal that what someone was going to say was so very sensitive information and that you needed to switch to a more discrete form of communication.
His echo went silent but his sister's voice remained in his ear from the other crystal. He strapped on his sword last and after catching one last look of himself in his mirror, showing that it fit right he walked for the door.
Finally exiting his room and locking the door behind him, he told her "i am dark".
"Our talks with the sun empire have been going well" Ishtar had lost her childish tone of voice and she was now the knight that she knew.
" How well?".
He didn't have much of an opinion on the Sun empire or rather the faction of it they were dealing with on account of leaving before the treaty talks started. All he knew about them was from the reports from Aro during the first few days that Jord formed.
"They are willing to forge an alliance with just a few trading deals and defense deals" Ishtar answered him.
"What about the thing" he couldn't exactly say the moon dragon egg out in public but Ishtar understood the implications behind his words.
"It's safe" she paused for a moment as if there was something she wanted to say but she was debating wither to say it " They are willing to help us hatch it. They want the Lunar nation to stand down as much as we do".
" Speaking of the moon people how are they?".
"They took some shots at our border in the North. I think that they are trying to feel us to out, to see how we react to their attacks. In the waters their warship's have been engaging the Ocean lords in some brutal battles lately and we have spotted a few of their ships of theirs stationed too close to our waters".
" I have to go" he was right in front of the bumblebee that his team were seated in "Tell mom and Dad i love them, bye".
He cut off the communication and walked into the ship up its ramp, that closed the moment he walked in and he could feel the bumblebee taking off the ground as he walked to the seats of the aircraft. All the seat's lined the crafts walls and both teams had mixed seating on the left or right.
He sat down next to Theseus and closed his eyes as he decided to take a moment of silence to ready himself for the fight ahead of him.
If it was silence Chris wanted he made the great mistake of wanting it besides Theseus. The boy wouldn't shut up at all and he kept his lips flapping about everything from his old mission to everything he knew about Chris himself and even asking questions about Chris's old adventures.
"Hey, Theseus" Chris through out the boys talking as he had been curious about something since Theseus started talking.
"Do have those trading cards on you" Chris was hopping that he didn't sound stupid right now, especially since it would be strange if Theseus carried around trading cards of them on missions.
"Just like you " he cursed his brain for reminding him that at he reached into his left pocket and fiddled with the ten trading cards he kept on him.
Theseus looked at him confused for a moment before he excitedly fiddled with his pocket as well and pulled the cards that depicted his team and Chris's.
" Those look so cool" Mulengu snatched his card from Theseus's hands and Chris could swear that he was looking at it with as much admiration as one would a god.
" Yeah, they do " Chris may have been holding his card but it still felt unreal in his hand's "It's like i am holding one for the first time".
He marveled at how soft and smooth the card felt between his fingers. He had held many cards before but there was something about his own that sent an electric jolt rushing up his spine.
This moment of elation was like the ultimate heaven to him, the ultimate high of his current life. Chris wanted to thank Theseus, the kid might have been annoying at times but this was something he and Chris could see eye to eye with over.
"Trading cards are freaking awesome".
" How did you guys do it..." Ursa's voice was more like a whisper and it startled everyone has she had so silent one could be forgiven for forgetting her presence there.
"Do what, miss Falcon?" Jason asked as he nervously scratched his hair.
"How did you guys manage to create so many powerful Alpha-spell's" Ursa had three cards in hand that she was glaring while trembled from anger.
The first two cards depicted Meghanada, Isfandiyar of team Argonaut and the last one herself. From what Chris could eyeball off the cards, Ursa three Alpha-spell's looked weak when stacked up against the two Argonaut archer's as well as the feats listed below them.
"How did you get those?" Pyrrha asked her.
"She gave me" Ursa pointed at Meghanada.
Chris felt a crushing despair as he looked at the frowns that were on his teammates faces showing that a realization had come to them. Against team Argonauts full set they looked bad, even Theseus looked better prepared than him at dealing with threat's.
"And i am ranked higher than him? " Chris rubbed his face in anger at his old arrogance " These guys are living full combat kits. Like a knight is supposed to be and yet we prided ourselves in getting lucky against Nimue once".
" Deus we suck, we don't deserve our rank" he whispered it too and no one on team Phantom disputed it.
The dispute came from team Argonaut. Their members began arguing against his stance and as expected Theseus was the loudest opposition.
Theseus actually jumped off his seat and much to Chris's surprise, he looked angry "Don't you say that!".
" Look kid..." He never got to finish as Theseus slammed his foot into the bumblebees hall, silencing him.
"No, you look Christian Ddraig!" He used his full name so flagrantly, Chris was annoyed and impressed at the same time.
"Okay, i guess that i am his berserker button " Chris once again wasn't sure if he should be fluttered or disturbed.
"So you guys don't have many high level Alpha-spell's, so what!" Theseus was now in Chris's face and the Prince was worried that the young man looked ready to headbutt him with just how angry he looked.
"You guys came from earth with near zero training in magic and you managed to capture glory and victory very few knights could dream off through your raw determination. You faced a threat to the entire universe and even with you're limited Alpha-spell's you managed to make miracle's happen".
Chris was pretty sure that Theseus was projecting some legendary version of team Phantom on the real thing and Chris was sure that the real thing wasn't what Theseus just described.
" No!" Theseus looked like he wanted to cry.
"You had darkness poisoning and it left you unable to become a knight, but you have managed to comeback as a legendary hero. I grew up thinking i wouldn't rise up above what my family had become. Then you returned and...you were, no you are my hero Christian Ddraig and i won't let you just insult yourself".
Chris was taken back this outburst, he wanted to tell Theseus that he wasn't a hero worth admiring. Considering how he had only managed to become the slayer of the Archetype-king because of luck.
"He is right Christian" he shut his mouth and looked at Pyrrha in confusion.
"I have been with this team for only a few months but in that time i have seen the valor, the prowess and the seriousness of all the great knights and hero's i have spent years rubbing shoulder's with " His tongue was now heavy and he just couldn't say much as Pyrrha continued "You have managed to fight great battles even with greater knights who had Alpha-spell's that outmatched you and you have all managed to prevail".
Chris for the first time thanked Pyrrha without feeling his throat fill out from his own vomit " Thanks Pyrrha and thank you Theseus, thank you and your team for believing in us".
Chris looked at Ursa and she seemed angry as her original question had been derailed by the talk about their teams worth. With a bulb over his head and the wheels in his brain turning he said.
"But we need more and stronger Alpha-spell's in order to compete with some of the other stuff out their. So why don't you guys tell us how you got so many Alpha-spell's" he looked at Ursa and he could catch her frown twitching upwards.
"Don't you guys already know how to make them?" It was Myrna who asked looking confused "Shouldn't you already know that?".
Chris winched just as everyone else with the exceptions of team Argonaut and Pyrrha. He remembered the she demon with her spear held in hand and her magic hidden in sleep to torment poor fellows who made the mistake of being her students.
" We were taught by a demon" Chris felt sweat rolling down his face " It was sink or swim, sink or swim ".
The other members of team Phantom began to chant the words Morigan's beat into them, sink or swim. As they chanted Chris could remember the red haired demoness with her spear that beat them down until they were forced to draw deep into their magics and create Alpha-spell's.
"We had to, or else she would have destroyed us" his eyes were wide open from the shell shock "Sink or swim, sink or swim, sink or swim".
"Maybe we should go through our methods" Theseus looked at them with concern "Umm... Lady Ulster you know, it is easier to create Alpha-spell's like we do if you have a goal in mind".
" A goal?" Ursa looked at him confused "You mean when you guys are given names from mythology and then you dedicate your lives to reflecting those figures".
" Well yes i guess. But it is more a subconscious thing at times, like look at Jason here" Theseus put his arms across Jason "His family have an Arthurian motif going with them. Jason tried to create a suit of armor with his fleece but his mind kept defaulting to a fleece. No offence fleece".
The fleece seemed to glow brighter at Theseus's words and Chris was taken aback " Your fleece is sentient? ".
"Yes" Jason nervously rubbed to back if his head "He prefers it if we call him Castor. But Theseus does have a point, the legends and stories we have our names based on act as blue prints for what we are trying to achieve".
" I have been meaning to ask" Mulengu raised his arm to ask a question "Isn't sort of a detriment. Like if i know that i am facing a guy named Hercules, i have a pretty good image of what to expect. It sort of throws the element of surprise out there".
" That is not exactly true" Meghanada finally spoke and her low voice reminded Chris of Ursa who was still sulking " Our Alpha-spell's might have a similar base to what we base them off, but that is only one thread of the magical code that is unique to every person. Also we draw from many different sources of the legends, from the figures themselves or from the stories that surround them, also many today draw their inspirations from previous knight's who bore the same names".
" It's true" Isfandiyar spoke as white and sift glow washed across him and Chris recognized it as a divine touch possessed by those who held divine power coursing through them "I managed to learn divine power in accordance with the legend i searched for, but there are other Isfandiyar's who have failed to do so. Not every Hercules you meet shall be unimaginably strong and not every Meghanada has the Brahmashirsha-Astra".
"Yelp, i guess that we have to start looking for new mythology books" Mulengu said with a smile.
Everyone cracked a smile, but Ursa remained grim and Chris swore that she looked grimmer than she had ever been.
As the bumblebee neared the Rifield, Chris looked out from the window. From there he could see some of the oldest lands in Avalon.
The green vegetation that rested over many miles hid the deep lake waters that surrounded the main island that rested at the center of this lake. Upon this island the city Rifield rested and it's high rise buildings could be seen for miles.
From the vegetation covered lake were many great gray walls, statues and pillars arose hundreds of meters into the air. These mighty monuments had been broken long ago. Their surfaces were cracked and from the worn from age
Upon the walls the remains of many mighty statues and carvings showing the great craftsmanship that his grandparents had praised in their first arrival to Avalon.
"What is that?" Ursa asked unable to keep her grim face at the sight of the mighty ancient structures of the capital of the old Iron kingdom.
"The remains of the mighty six walls of Rifield" Chris rested his eyes upon the mighty statue of the last the Iron kings, Triggfla, the man who had bent the knee for his parents and been amongst the first to enter the young Avalon's fold.
"The Iron kingdom?" Thor asked as he looked at him confused.
"One of the oldest kingdom's of old Avalon. They ruled the entire Iron province as we know it now, it was amongst the first kingdoms to join Avalon when it started" Chris looked at the old walls that even in their broken state, they looked majestic.
"What happened here?" Thor asked.
"The Phantom king happened. His beasts tore through the old walls. My grandparents when they began fighting the Phantom king saved it, and their last fishing king Triggfla declared his loyalty to them and this land joined Avalon".
The bumblebee managed to land in the cities landing strip and as Chris left the ramp he could see structures both of the olden days intermixed with the modern buildings.
Awaiting their team was an elf dressed in the green and black colours of the Avalonian police force. The man was clearly the sheriff who they had to make contact with.
"Sheriff Cagora i presume" Chris outstretched his hand and shook the sheriffs hand.
"Yes sir" the sheriff had a strong and firm handshake " I guessing that this is the rest of your team ".
"Yes sir" Chris answered him before he said "I just want to say that i wish i would be visiting this great and old city under better circumstances".
" Me too son, me too" the sheriff patted him on the shoulder to show solidarity "Come on the station is just a few meter's from here".
The walk to the station was fairly short but in it Chris could see the much intricately designed city. Though that was not the most striking feature of the city. It was the silence of the usually loud fishing city and the lack of people in the this economic hot bed of a city.
" I see that the vampires frightened the rest of the city " it was an unnerving feel to be here. Chris felt as if he had walked into a ghost town.
"Yes" the sheriff sighed and now Chris could notice the bags under his eyes "The mayor and the Mp has ordered a lockdown until we find and kill it".
The sheriffs station was a large building filled with even more officer's. While the rest of the city was silent and slow, the station was fast and bust. Police officers moving up and down, answering calls and giving out orders.
The aura inside was hot and intense. The smell of coffee followed the half awake officers as they worked like machines without end. As his team filed into the station, the officers stopped all they were doing and looked at them.
" Ladies and gentlemen this is team Phantom and Argonaut " the sheriff was introducing them "They are going to be helping us with our vampire problem. Hugan, i want those files in the office and Filua run another mana tracing spell just to see if we can get a hit".
The officers he was speaking to both nodded and left their fellow officers who all looked at him with anticipation. Chris felt his knees get weaker as he felt all those eyes bearing at him.
He swallowed his saliva and wetted his dry throat " Greetings officers of Rifield. My names are Christian Ddraig Aeris second class knight of the realm, i am looking forward to working with you combating this evil together ".
As soon as his name left his lips, Chris mummers broke out amongst the police as they seemed to realize just who he was. This type of reaction was one he was all too familiar with and Chris couldn't help but frown at people were looking at he, as if he was some kind of wild animal attraction.
" Alright, alright, back to work" the sheriff seemed to have noticed his discomfort and so he sent his subordinates back to their duties though Chris still felt their eyes pealing against his skin.
The Sheriff led them upstairs to the top floor of the station were his office was. Inside the office, the walls were lined with beautiful ivory carvings that Chris recognized as coming from ancient Mamos, a group of elephant like beasts. These carvings showed the history of this kingdom from it's founding under the great king Koja to the king Triggfla handing his throne to his grandparents and to now.
"Brown tea" the sheriff produced a tray of hot coffee cup's.
"Thanks" Chris accepted it and the warmth of the sweet liquid kicked his senses hard. He could see this effect in everyone else who drunk the brown tea, Mulengu and Thor gave of sparks of electricity energy while Ursa looked keen and attentive.
" This is good" Chris placed the cup on the table and he asked " So tell me about this vampire ".
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I am a 21 year old law school student at the National Institute of Public Administration. My dream is to one day publish my story phantom ddriag and hopefully get a show made from it.
I also have a youtube account that hundels web fiction content, here is the link https://m.youtube.com/channel/UCFz-mHywXBJnLF8uyofcLAw/videos