Christian Ddraig didn't join the knights core in order to get depressed, though honestly, who did.
Having to see the families of the victim's made his day more worse than he had thought it could possibly get. He wished that he could delegate this grim duty to his fellow knights, but he knew his duty and no matter what he would uphold it.
He just wished that it didn't have to feel like a stub wound to his heart, every time he heard them, mention their lose and the pain it caused them.
He sighed as he rubbed his head from the headache that had been forming since they started. It felt like the heat from the sun, was cooking his brain, and Chris was just dying to apply ice on it.
"Damn it" he cursed as his face twisted from the pain that was ever so slowly building up.
"Are you okay?" Both Theseus and Pyrrha asked him at the same time, their voices laced with concern for him.
He paused and thought on wither he should have told them yes or no. He thought about the faces of those parents, sibling's, grandparents, uncles and aunt's as they told him the tale of how their loved ones were torn from them.
With a heavy sigh he looked to them and opened his mouth to speak.
"Its just a headache from everything we have had to hear. Those people have already been through enough, there is no need for their loved ones to have died so brutally".
" I know" Pyrrha looked stone faced and her voice was a cold whisper, with a weight to it that he had never heard in her voice before.
Chris looked at her closer and he could see a dead look in her eye's. There were times when Chris forgot that Pyrrha had been a Knight for a longer time than he had.
"She has probably seen more of this than i have " he thought feeling a great swell of sympathy for her.
He wondered how many brutal monster killings she had seen, how many time's she had been forced to tell family members to their face that there loved one had suffered a brutal end.
He got closer to her and placed his hand on her shoulder, she looked at him surprised by this show of comfort from him and he said "We will bring them peace".
Pyrrha smiled softly at him " I know we will".
Chris wanted to say something else but then something in the air entered his nose and he felt it itch and caused him to develop a brief sneezing fit. Chris recognized the smell well enough, and it made his mouth water uncontrollably.
"What's wrong?" Pyrrha asked him as his sneezing fit continued and he was forced to swallow his saliva.
"It's just some Orcher powder. Though i guess since we are close to the spice market" Chris knew the main export spice of this city that usually made it into his favourite rice.
The cities central spice market was a mixture of sweet and chilly smells that mercilessly attacked the senses.
The shouting of shopkeeper's declaring the prices of their products out loud filled the area. The mixture of many food venders selling fried rice that was marinated in the spice that had invaded his nostrils, added a sweet smell to the square that left him salivating.
Chris swallowed his saliva once more "I think this is the place of the Vidaga family... Theseus?".
The young knight had strangely been silent since he asked how Chris was feeling before, when he was suffering a headache.
Before, Theseus had been talking nonstop and Chris was actually thankfully of this, as it helped him keep his mind somewhat cleared of these horrors for a time.
" Theseus? " he called once more to Theseus, who appeared rooted on the spot with his eyes looking blankly at something in the center of the road.
Chris followed his eyes to a pillar the size of a large tree built right in the center of a round about. The pillar was a white marble structure with the engravings of knights battling monsters on its top and at it's base.
In it's middle where thousands of names from top to bottom. From the list Chris picked off Tristan Ulster and Stupro Troezen in the top of the list of names that belonged to the nobels of old.
Chris recognized what the pillar was instantly and a little lower from the names he found an inscription that was written in glowing glyphs that read.
" A commemoration to the hero's of the battle of blackened water's and their sacrifice for the future of Avalon. May their sacrifice never be forgotten, rest in the far lands, sons of Avalon " he read it out loud "A thousand years and their not forgotten".
"No" Theseus sounded angry with what he had just read out.
"I think that it was a thousand years ago" Chris was sure that he couldn't get this thing wrong. The glyphs indicating the date were always moving in real time, so he wasn't wrong.
"They aren't heroes. They never have been and never will be" Theseus growled as he spoke.
"Theseus i...." He looked at Pyrrha who had a similar hateful scowl as she glared at the pillar like Theseus.
"Deus in the astral realm. You'd think that their ancestors slowly murdered their dogs or something " if the two of them had eye based abilities, the pillar would have been torn to pieces.
"Please, don't try to sugar coat it my lord" Theseus cut him off " They were fools driven by pride and nothing else.
Rebels who broke rank based on nothing but their need to support their ego. They caused our nation's greatest losses and our one chance at crushing the Phantom King before he become a serious threat to Avalon".
The hatred and passion in the young Fae's voice was intense enough to melt steel.
" Even though i might be their blood, i stand in the shame of their actions, as my family has for a thousand years " Theseus finished his words before he spat on the road as a final insulting sign of his hatred of his forebears.
From the look on Pyrrha's face, she showed some sort of agreement with Theseus's stance on the old knights of Avalon.
"I sorry Christian, but they failures who should be remembered in shame, not honoured" Pyrrha added before muttering a curse in Elvish and she walked away.
He wanted to argue with them that these men were their ancestors, the old kings and knights of old Avalon who founded this nation and those who once served with his grandparents when they began to unite the realm. He wanted to tell them that their ancestors had their merits and heroic moments, like old king Atna Ulster. But Chris could not refute the fact that the Lord's rebellion of the old kingdom and the losses that followed it, were the old nobles fault's.
But he didn't have time for that. The Vidaga house was just a few meters from the market. He took a deep breath and composed his face as he got closer to the large brown wooden door of a blue and white house.
His hand shook from nervousness as it got close to the door. He grabbed a hold of it with his left hand in order to steady it. As his palm went around it, he realized just how sweaty he was.
"Take a calming breath. It helps" Pyrrha whispered behind him.
He followed her instructions and he tried to clear his mind as he knocked on the door. He straightened his back and held himself in the most regal manner that he could manage.
Chris had done this before with all the families they had visited. But every damn time it got harder and harder.
He wondered what face he would meet on the other side. Would it be one broken by sorrow or one consumed by hatred and loathing.
He was answered as the door creaked open to reveal the tiny figure of a Fae child. A young girl with long black hair and a beautiful pink dress, she looked no more than eight from what he could assume.
He looked down on the small child who had to look all the way up in order to get a good view of him.
Her face was fallen while her eyes were red and wet, indicating that tears had recently left them. She looked at him with wide eyes as she took in what he was.
He was about to open his mouth and introduce himself, but the little girl shouted out "Mommy there are Knights here!".
The little girl sounded somewhat excited as she shouted to her mother. Chris cracked a smile as he watched her jump up and down from shear excitement.
Her mother appeared and her face was one of annoyance from the little girls continuous shouting. Another thing he noticed on the woman's face was fallen like the girl and her eyes showed sign's of weeping.
" Helania Vidaga will you please... ".
The woman was about to scold the child for her noise making, but the moment her eyes fell upon them, she stopped, her eyes widened in surprise and her jaw almost hit the ground.
There was an awkward silence that followed, as the Knight's and the Vidagas looked at each other in total silence with no one budging, with the exception of the little girl whose head was constantly swinging from her mother to them and back again.
Chris decided to end the silence before the poor child's head came off, from how much she was spinning it and to stop Mrs Vidaga, from swallowing a fly with how open her mouth was.
" Greetings Mrs Vidaga. My name is Christian Ddraig, Knight class Aeris second class. These are my fellow Knight Pyrrha Ulster, Knight class Aeris second class and Theseus Troezen, Knight class Aeris second class ".
Chris gave her a small bow to show his respect with his fist, resting over his chest " I am sure that the Sheriff called you earlier to inform you about our coming here?".
Mrs Vidaga nodded her head as she stepped towards them and shook their hands "Yes, he did. And i just want to say that is a great pleasure to see you sir".
" The pleasure is all mine" Chris smiled towards the warmest smile that he could.
"Of course, of course" she looked frantically at her house as she was noticing masses that she hadn't before "I apologize for the mess".
" It's okay ma'am, your house is perfect " Chris couldn't see anything wrong with this place, in fact he loved it.
"Oh, where are my manners please come in" Mrs Vidaga moved them into the house and she led them to the living room.
They reached the door to the living room when Mrs Vidaga reached for bucket filled with a yellow powder.
Chris halted, recognizing what was about to happen and he stopped as did the both of his companions. Mrs Vidaga then dipped her fingers into the powder that she smeared over their foreheads in the pattern of her families symbol that looked like a butterfly to Chris.
"You may enter" Mrs Vidaga gave them permission and they walked into the living room.
This was a guest right. An elvish custom that showed that they were guest's in her home and under her protection.
The living room was moderately sized with with comfortable couches that Chris settled into nicely. Though looking at Mrs Vidaga who sat facing him, look like she was about to burst into tears made the seat feel like stone.
He coughed before he began to speak "I would like to start by giving you my condolences Mrs Vidaga. Your family will have justice".
" Is that why you are you?" There was a narrow look of frustration and anger in her eye's.
Chris had seen this from the other people he had visited today and Chris understood the anger at the notion that they weren't trying to catch this thing and give closer to the families.
"No, Mrs Vidaga" the last thing he needed was another pissed off parent trying to assault him, because he let them vent.
"That is not why we are here. We currently have six well trained Knight's, hunting the vampire as we speak. We are here to just have a simple series of questions that stem from this kind of unfortunate case" he kept his face straight and slightly deepened his voice like his parents would.
Mrs Vidaga sighed as she rubbed her wet and puffy eyes. This went on for five whole minutes and Chris wondered what was going through her brain right now.
She stopped massaging her face and she turned to her young daughter saying " Helania please go outside and play. Mommy has important decisions to make with these people ".
" But Mommy... " the little was about to plead her case with a left tooth missing from her mouth that made her cuter.
"Honey!" Mrs Vidaga slammed her fist into the couch that she was seated in as she snapped at her daughter.
The little girl instantly went silent as her eyes became wide puppy eyes that leaked out streams of tears.
Her mother seemed to return to her senses after snapping at her, and horror seemed to draw upon her face as she aimed to comfort her daughter in a hug, but upon simple physical contact, the girl ran off weeping into the kitchen as the mother shouted apologizes.
"I...I... I am sorry about that" she sounded tired beyond words and Chris was afraid that she would lose consciousness and just drop, but she held.
"Hey, it's okay. It happens to all of us, and with all the pain that you have suffered" Chris comforted her understanding.
"I feel like hell, i am a terrible mother" Mrs Vidaga sighed as she threw her head back and laughed.
"Ma'am, with all the pain that you have been through it makes sense. Please know that you have my condolences" now it was Pyrrha who spoke.
"Mrs Vidaga?" Chris wanted to get into the position of asking a few questions but Mrs Vidaga looked out of it.
Her eyes were silent and wide as if she lost a memory and whatever it was increased her use of her tears.
"She wanted to own a house in the area you know..." Any warmth he felt was drowned in a cold bucket.
"She had just wanted to enjoy the place before she went to her university..." She continued and try as he may to ask her questions, his voice had left him.
He had hoped that it wouldn't get to him. But his trembling voice and the emotional drain, that made his muscles feel like mush.
He tried again to speak but his throat was dry and he just couldn't. He wanted to try again but a hand rested on his shoulder and gently squeezed it.
He looked to the hand and saw that it belonged to Pyrrha who was looking at him with a look of concern.
"It's best that i do this one" she said as she rubbed his back "Mrs Vidaga, do mind if my friend took a cup of water?".
Mrs Vidaga seemed to realize what was going on. She pointed him to a room to the left " The cupboard is on the right and you will see the water dispenser next to it".
"Thank you" he whispered back, though his voice sounded strained and dry.
The walk to the kitchen felt shameful. He was a Knight, just fighting monsters wasn't part of the job, he also needed to be ready to give awful news to people without breaking.
He sighed as he pulled one of the red cups from the cupboard and walked to the water dispenser. He was thankfully that the water was cold.
It smoothed his throat, that felt dry and strained. He took a moment to enjoy the cold and the refreshing feeling that soothed his throat.
"What are you doing?" Chris would never admit to having been frightened by a child's voice.
But the water that flew out of his nose as he tried forced to force it in. Wide eyed, he turned to Helania, who was looking up to him with interest.
"I...i" he coughed out some water that had settled in his throat "I am taking a cup of water".
" What is like being a Knight? " she got closer to him, her eyes wide with admiration.
"It's good to serve others, and it can be stressful at times" he pinched the bridge of his nose, as a headache beat against his head.
"I wanna be a Knight when i grow up" there was something heartwarming at about how enthusiastically the child declared her wish.
"Well, if you do, i will be there to Knight you myself".
" Really? " she had a wide grin on her face and Chris smiled back at her as he nodded.
Helania was jumping up and down in excitement, but then she stopped. Her once bright face was downcast and she whipped her eyes from some fresh tears that were forming in her eye's.
" What's... What's wrong? " he tried to think of anything he said that may have upset her like this.
"It's just that, i always wanted her to be with me, when i did it. I wish she was still here, i miss her" Helania sounded small and fragile.
Chris felt his heart sink even lower at the sight of this innocent girl. He knelt next to her and placed his hand on her back, while he spoke.
"I know how that feels. A year ago, my grandparents died and i miss them too, sometimes it hurts that their not there and i don't think it ever goes away..." he was wondering what else he could say, to make the kid feel better.
"But we fight on, no matter how hard it gets" that sound hypocritical as he couldn't even fight on to do his damn job "I swear to you Helania, your sister will have justice. I will find the monster that did this".
" Do you promise? " the innocent question strengthened his will and he brought out his right pinky.
"I swear it upon Deus himself" he hooked to her pinky finger and their pact was sealed.
It was then that Pyrrha rushed into the kitchen screaming his name.
"What's wrong?" He asked her concerned by how frantic she looked.
"A call from the others, they have found it".
He couldn't figure out how they missed the destruction. The moment the three Knight's and the armed police officers arrived at the sight where they had been called to, Chris felt like face palming.
It was a mess of thousands upon thousands of meters of destroyed, cooked and vaporised earth.
" They certainly didn't hold back did they" Theseus whistled before he said that.
"Where are they?" Chris drew Lucius-aurora and he watched Pyrrha with her spear close in hand walking next to him as they looked through the area, but nothing came.
"I don't know, the message came from here" she sounded just as frustrated as he felt.
"Wait!" Theseus called freezing everyone.
"What is it Aeris Troezen?" Pyrrha asked.
Theseus closed his eyes and he appeared to be pushing his hands around, as if trying to feel the air "Can't you guys sense that?".
Chris tried to focus on the magical energy in the area to see what Theseus meant, but with all the magical energy that had been realised in this air, it was like trying to look through static.
" I can see it" Pyrrha said as her eyes morphed into raven like eyes that moved around unnaturally.
"See what?" Chris was getting anxious, as were the Sheriff and the rest of his officer's.
"A pocket world" both Pyrrha and Theseus answered at the same time.
Chris felt like falling down from confusion "There is a pocket world here?, and how did you two sense and see it?".
" My Triple Eyes Morigan" Pyrrha answered like he should remember a trick she had last used all too long ago.
"I have a pocket world of my own, so sensing pocket dimensions isn't too hard" Theseus answered and Chris felt yet another reason to be skeptical of Theseus's so called inferiority to him.
"Can you get us in without having to use a high scale Alpha-spell blast" He was sure that his Golau-Outlivion was powerful enough to cut through the reality of the pocket world, but the last thing he needed was to accidentally hit one of his fellow Knights with an attack that would instantly kill them.
"I can" Theseus answered " I can open my own pocket world, and then link it to this one and phase us through ".
Chris nodded and turned to the Sheriff " I am afraid that you are going to have to sit this one out Sheriff. We need a second wave out here in case we lose or it tries to escape ".
The Sheriff brought his fist to his chest in salute and responded " Understood. Though, you kids take care in there".
"Of course sir" he turned to Theseus who was taking deeper and deeper breaths as he called upon tones of magical energy to call upon his pocket world.
The world around them distorted and faded as large and complex threads of magical energy began to spin around them and interweave, until they were in a deep dungeon of sort's.
It was made of granite pillars and bricked walks in places. Across it's walls were carvings of beasts of all sorts and little blue crystals that lit up the dungeon.
The lights illuminated a large area that seemed to be a temple of sort's hallowed into the earth.
The temple was beautiful marvel and the large engravings that dotted it of men and women who Chris recognized as the people of Theseus's team, as well as large dogs, bears and cows that gave more majesty to it.
"How did you make this" Chris had been in a pocket world before, but they still amazed him.
"I have fought in hundreds of dungeons, their mana has imprinted itself on my energy core to the point that i manifest this patchwork of them" Theseus answered as he began to lead them down a dark, passageway "Also making the big guy my animus brought his dungeon along as a base for all this".
" The big guy? " Pyrrha asked confused.
Theseus didn't answer, he simply pointed to the temple where Chris and Pyrrha finally saw it. A creature standing at ten feet in height, it's muscles were toned and ripped enough to put anybody builder to shame and it's head was not that of a man as the rest of it's body would suggest, but a black bull with piercing red eyes.
Chris instinctively felt his grip of Lucius-aurora tighten. Theseus must have noticed the tension him and Pyrrha, because he instantly said.
"Whoa, whoa calm down. The big guy is friendly" Chris relaxed is grip of Lucius-aurora.
"What's his name?" Chris had never had the time to study animus magic, but it did intrigue him.
"Mino, please be nice. He is kind of shy to stranger's" Theseus whispered this before shouting out a greeting to Mino, who moooed back in return.
Theseus led them to a wall and he began to take in deep breaths as he stretched and relaxed his fingers.
"Are you ready?" Chris felt concerned about what could happen to Theseus, if the task proved itself too taxing.
"Let's find out" Theseus took in one last deep breath, before thrusting his hands into the wall.
The wall began to violently vibrate as it turned into a black crystal. Chris wasn't sure what possessed him, but he instinctively reached forward and grabbed Theseus who he pulled away from the wall.
"What ?!" Theseus was as confused as he was, but the sight of the wall cracking as the inky darkness seeped through the cracks and onto the floor.
The wall broke down, leaving a hole to another pocket dimension. And from it Chris felt a force of pressure followed by heat came.
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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