Lord Joyde The Madman: Heylo, everybody! How are you all doing?
Perhaps in no small part due to the fact that I finally got myself a job, my life has quickly become rather hectic and unstable.
I had to rethink my entire sleeping schedule, focus on my work and the things that needed to be done as quickly as possible and spend quite a bit of time browsing the internet for fixes, known bugs and glitches as well as talking over the phone in English (as my coworkers and bosses don't have the ability in question) and making several purchases on behalf of my new company.
In other words, I've had absolutely zero time to actually think about what I'm going to write next. While I do know the general gist of things to come, I haven't really fleshed everything out yet and the way my story works is one where every single chapter counts as important.
Thankfully, while this chapter has taken a bit more time than I would have liked to be made, I haven't stumbled upon a complete roadblock.
Anyways, here comes the next chapter of EUPHORIA! I sincerely hope that you enjoy, let us begin!
Don't mind me guys and girls! I'm just a line break...
A few moments later... - Berlin Undercity Entrance - Leonardo's Point Of View...
"So this is the statue that you wanted to show me?" A rather uncertain tone left me as I gazed upon the rather imposing monument of stone. It seemed to depict a man in a wizard robe and hat, pushing down some kind of troll with his right foot, holding a brilliant sword in his right hand and some kind of flag in his left hand.
I did not recognize the symbol on the flag, yet it appeared to be Celtic in nature."Triskellion." My vampiric maid suddenly replied as I turned my head towards her in confusion."The thing on the flag, its called The Triskellion. An ancient druidic rune and HI's eternal symbol, representing the three things they fight for: Dominance, Prosperity and Ascension."
"Right..." Was my rather toneless and expressionless answer as the vampire queen beamed a smile in my general direction."So who's the wizard? Humanity?"
She grimaced."In a way, both yes and no are the correct answer to that question. The wizard, as you so justly put it, is none other than Merlin himself. A self-righteous monstrosity of a man, a supremacist and fascist in every single sense of the word. Some even say that Hitler was one of his bastard sons whom Merlin never bothered to introduce into the world of magic."
"A vainglorious, immortal leader that's managed to force everyone to conform to his own beliefs? Hmm, my kinda guy." Anna's jaw nearly fell to the floor as I let out a cheery laugh and continued."Its really too bad that I'll have to kill him."
She let out a massive sigh of relief."That being said, you and Merlin do share quite a few similarities now that I think about it from a third point of view."
I quirked a very curious eyebrow towards her as we sat down onto a nearby bench, promptly ignoring the somewhat terrified inhumans all around us."Oh?"
"Actually, its almost like you two are the same person with only slightly different points of view. He is a human supremacist and you are not... I'm honestly not sure exactly what you are to be honest, young master." She admitted with a slight tone of uncertainty."Hn, the more I hear about this Merlin person the more I want to meet him. And, to answer your unsaid question, not even I am absolutely certain of what I am, Anna... and perhaps, all things considered, that is for the best."
"... maybe you are right. Nothing concerning eldritch energies is ever simple." She let out a massive sigh."That said, people will most likely ask you what you are sometime in the future, right? What is it that you are planning to tell them that you are? God?" She joked with another smile as I grinned."God, eh? Funny you should say that... but in reality, I figured that it may be for the best to let them form their own beliefs and misconceptions concerning my origins."
"We'll see about that, you monster scum!" A youthful voice thundered from somewhere behind the gathered crowd of inhumans as a great deal of people were thrown aside by what I assume were magic winds, separating the collective in order to reveal a rather curious duo."Oy kid, what did I tell you about handling the Inhumans so roughly?!"
"Shut up, you damn witch! You're not any better than them anyway." Two female figures walked forward, one teenager with unkempt crimson and pink hair wearing a china dress and high heels which she was clearly uncomfortable in. Her partner was what sounded like an older woman, somewhere in her forties, yet she had the appearance of...
I honestly couldn't tell."What the hell?" I quirked more than one eyebrow at the older... thing, as my supernatural eyes whirled into focus, not quite managing to make heads or tails of her biology."No organs?"
Anna chuckled before answering my unsaid questions with a rather light tone, yet I could sense the gnawing fear beneath it. Something strong seems to have come our way."A gold-eyed witch. Formerly normal human women who were part of the HI organization, now they're little more than mana-forged puppets, killing machines created by Merlin himself and used to keep Inhumanity in order."
My eyes narrowed onto the woman as I focused a good portion of psionic energy into my eyes, causing their normally yellow glow to turn a purplish shade, like a deep concentration of red and pink."Its useless, inhuman. My body is protected by magics authored by the Arch mage himself... no mortal eyes can see-" She paused momentarily as I ether-walked in front of her and grasped the woman by the throat.
"Good thing I'm not mortal then." I grimaced as I scanned her up and down."No vital organs, no glands, some bones outright removed, others added in.... Great amounts of scarred tissue present where the womb should usually be... you..." I recoiled in slight disgust as the woman kicked me away with enough force to send me flying and dislocate my neck.
Landing next to Anna, I promptly cracked my bones back into place just as the woman drew a formerly invisible blade from her back. Well, when I say blade.. it was more like a giant slab of iron slapped onto an equally iron handle."A weapon meant for breaking, not cutting." She replied to my unsaid assessment, causing me to roll my eyes."Oh good lord, ANOTHER MIND READER JOINS THE FUCKING FRAY!"
My discomfort made the pale-haired gender-less-... made the witch, quirk an eyebrow at me and even offer a bow in response."Apologies, strange one. I do not often use mind reading as it is dishonorable but.."
"My thoughts are so loud that its impossible not to read them, right?" She blinked in confusion."An excuse I've heard before..." I shook my head and turned towards Anna."Never mind that- Anna, you take on the child, I'll deal with the Witch."
"Oh? I am being called to fight? Most curious." Anna chuckled lightly before her blood-stained bat wings erupted and fangs bared towards the-"HEY! I'M NOT A KID, YOU SHIT! IM ALREADY FIFTEEN!"
Before I could respond, the gold-eyed witch charged towards me, her giant blade cleaving the very air and causing a very audible hissing sound as it neared my head. Much to my own surprise, I dodged the blow instead of catching it or letting it hit me."Pandora's Box, begin search, parameter: near-instantaneous teleportation!"
The witch suddenly exclaimed as the mana around her collapsed into a strange green box that unveiled itself as if it was a book."Error; too many found. Please set more parameters."
A nod was given to the box as she charged me again. This time I was prepared for her speed and dodged the sword just in time to slam her stomach with my fist. We both paused for a moment and I nearly did a double take as the woman blinked in confusion."... weak." She then kicked me again, this time causing me to fly through the statue of Merlin.
"HEY! BE MORE RESPECTFUL TO THE MASTER, YOU DUMB WITCH!" The teenager exclaimed in an arrogant tone as she deftly continued to evade Anna's attempts at reaching her with what appeared to be a multitude of magic traps and teleportation spells."BE STILL, YOU GOD-FORSAKEN MIDGET!" Much to my surprise, Anna seems to have devolved herself to her enemy's level.
Shaking my head out of my stupor, I turn my skin into bio-titanium just in time for the witch to strike at me. I caught her blow with my right hand and yet she still managed to dent it considerably."What the hell is that sword made off?!"
Leaping away from her for a moment, I quickly regenerate my dented arm and channel QI alone into it, enforcing my next attack. The blow connected with her left shoulder as she moved to dodge it, but all it managed to do was shred off a piece of her clothing. She... it, was currently wearing a skintight black suit which fit its gender-less form. The witch was horridly skinny and almost deformed by human standards."... you appear confused at my appearance, monster."
The witch stated with a rather amused tone."Am I supposed to be disgusted? I've seen far uglier things than you... I simply find it shocking that HI would employ something so... Inhuman, among their ranks."
She quirked an eyebrow, something that I am honestly surprised she even still has."Inhumanity is varied and powerful. An immortal and strong tool was required to combat the threat that you represent, antediluvian."
"Antediluvian?" She nodded towards my confusion."This is how we call you, ancient existences that have been upon this earth since time immemorial. You have managed to gain a vampire of Queen rank as a servant, you posses high-speed regeneration and several unknown visual as well as movement powers. As such, you can only be one thing: an unknown existence, an antediluvian that has only recently awakened."
She blinked."... and somehow managed to fit into society without causing a mayor spree of chaos."
I chuckled at her assessment of me."Well, I did say that it would be for the best that you make up your own conclusions and misconceptions."
Decidedly not allowing my enemy time to cook up any sort of response, I summon forth my Caedes and leap forward, striking against the witch's sword. She recoils at the blow in surprise as her feet are forced a meter into the earth."W-what? T-t-that strength?! You were holding back?"
Blinking in confusion, I threw a look at Caedes and take note of the psionic energy infused within it.. its just a little bit really, the leftovers of what I used to summon the sword, yet it increased the force of my blow so much? I.. feel sort of cheated."Sorry about that, lost control for a moment there."
The witch grit its teeth, closed its eyes and sheathed her blade."... fine, I won't take it as in insult considering that I was also holding back but..."
Now its eyes were open again, what was once gold turned an unnatural cobalt blue and pink.. Magic? Something deep inside of me is boiling with hatred at the mere sight of this thing."Arcane magic. Powerful, unstable and incredibly addictive. You should be careful Leo, there's no telling what kind of spell that thing will unleash."
Yomi explained, taking a sudden interest in the real world. A grin formed itself upon me as I watched the cobalt energy coursing around the witch like an untamed whirlwind before being completely absorbed."Unleashed Potential." The witch spoke, dreadfully calm despite everything. The whirlwind resumed once again, even if only for a seco-
No, the whirlwind did not resume.
That was just the wind caused by the witches inhuman movements.
My body was split in half for just a brief moment before being reconnected by my hard-working nano machines. Psionic energy instantaneously began infusing all of my senses and muscles at such a rabid pace that I finally felt this gigantic pool of power within me being drained, no matter how slowly. This time, I managed to block her strike, causing the witch to quirk an eyebrow at me."Just how much power are you holding back, old one?..." She muttered in anger and leaped away only to charge right back at me.
I did not answer her. In truth, not even I know the true answer to that question, do I?
In any case, she continued attacking me, leaping from side to side, charging from place to place and basically digging me into the ground I stood on. With each jump, the force behind her legs tore the earth apart, causing explosions and ruining stable ground. The Inhumans who were watching us were now far, far away, all running to the farthest corners of their poor town as the witch began using their homes and buildings as landing platforms, crashing through them and breaking herself upon stone and iron without even biting a lip.
But..."You can't control your power properly." My observation made her pause as another deflected blow sent her crashing through a bakery."And you use a weapon which is not meant for you." She retorted, making me blink which was just enough for her to jam her sword straight through my gut."Don't lose fo-huh?!" I placed a hand onto her right shoulder."If your enemy is too slow to reach you, be sure that you don't come too close of your own accord." My fingers which were now coiled around her shoulder exploded with psionic power, crushing bone and incinerating muscle."AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARHG!"
She leaped away once more... yet this time, she didn't leave a cloud of dust or broken earth behind. A weak leap, pathetically so when compared to the others. I turned my eyes towards the witch just in time to see her cut off her shattered limb."Why.. why did you not do this to either of my legs? Victory would have been yours already."
I shrugged as the wound in my stomach closed."And why would I do that? You just said something fairly interesting... what do you mean by: me using a weapon that is not meant for me?"
She blinked in uncertainty."... those who have mastered weaponry of any kind can often tell when a person, most often an enemy, is not using a weapon fit for them which then allows them to make use of this information. I have this feeling when fighting you."
"Oh? Do go on." I cracked my neck as I turned to look at Caedes... this burning, infernal blade is not meant for me?..
Come to think of it, this thing is supposed to be my perfect blade, right? Made for me and only me? The witch continued her explanation through gritted teeth as I took note of her regenerating body."The way you move, the way you fight... the only reason why you've managed to defeat me now is not because you are any good with the sword you wield, but simply because you are my physical superior.... though the reasoning behind even that eludes me."
My eyes turned yet again towards the blade in my right hand and I found myself mesmerized by its ever-shifting, molten... chaotic, nature."Aaaahh... so that's why." Realization dawned upon me like a ton of bricks slamming against my head. Caedes... its current incarnation was made back when I was still connected to Chaos, which is ever-burning and ever-changing.
Life is certainly ever-changing, yet it does not always burn, now does it?
But still..."So you are actually going to let me regenerate?" She questioned me with a tone of disbelief."Its been so long since I've had a proper fight. Sorry if you find this demeaning or whatever, but I'd like it to last."
She did not offer any sort of reply and instead seemingly focused on her own regeneration, a small arm sprouting out of the charred shoulder... yet something was wrong about this new arm.
It would be far more correct to say that the rest of her body is all wrong."That new arm of yours..."
The witch blinked in momentary confusion before sighing and then offering a somewhat saddened snort."So you've noticed, old one? I may not be capable of providing you the combat you desire."
"Your body is forged and twisted by magic... yet even if the regeneration itself is fed by magic, it is unable to regenerate your arm the way it was after being changed. Rather, the arm you are growing now is how it should actually be." She nodded slowly."Indeed... regenerating my arm as it was a few moments ago would require me to posses power equal to the very magus that created it in the first place."
"But why allow your body to regenerate in the first place if complete reconstruction is impossible?" She blinked in a moment of confusion before letting out a strangled laugh."You truly do sound like him."
Now it was my turn to be confused."Huh?.. what the hell?"
"Pardon us, old one... but we have been observing you for some time now. Your conversation with the vampire at the time of your arrival at the statue was broadcast for all of us to hear." I tilted my head in even greater confusion before finally catching on."Oh.. like Merlin, huh."
She finally stood up, her arm restored... yet it seemed so fragile, so weak, so... human, in comparison to the rest of her."Yes, just like the master." She tried to move the newly-regenerated arm but to no avail, almost as if it rejected any sort of command from the rest of her body.
Finally, I returned my attention towards my weapon.
I was no longer connected to Chaos.. so what was I now?
An agent, no- a Curator Of Life?
What kind of weapon would be befitting of a Curator Of Life? Something capable of both great destruction as well as creation?
So.. a hammer?
... no, somehow I don't think that'd be good for me.
My senses screamed at me as I was forced to dodge a lunge from my recovered enemy."Forgive me, old one.. but I do not have the same level of honor as you!" She bit her lip in frustration as her sneak attack failed. However, I did not respond to her and merely kept on dodging absentmindedly for the most part.
Hmmm..."Hey Yomi, do you have any ideas?"
The woman in question sent me a rather curiously raised eyebrow."You're seriously asking me? I barely have any idea what the hell you are even thinking about."
Ah. Well, that's true, I guess."W-well, what kind of weapon do you think would fit me?"
She blinked and then answered without a shred of doubt in her voice."Absolutely none."
"Eh? What do you mean, darling?" Perhaps due to her surprising answer, I spoke out loud. The witch stopped momentarily, her magically-altered brain doing its best to make sense of the sentence I just seemingly asked her. However, thanks to my quick response, at least some of her sanity was saved from destruction."Ah, ignore that witch, it wasn't meant for you."
".... blessed are the simple of mind, unable to comprehend the madness of the heretic." She chanted in response and I found myself unable to really blame her."What I meant is this: no singular form of weapon would fit you, Leonardo."
"So basically, it needs to be something that can fit into multiple categories?" Yomi sent me an affirmative nod."Well what kind of weapon would that be?"
"You've stated how a hammer would not work for some reason but perhaps you were on the right track back there... perhaps what you need is a tool that can function as a weapon? Then.. a scythe?" Hn.
Perhaps."That still does not feel totally right."
"A shovel, then?" She joked with a light chuckle and I couldn't help myself but mimic her."... now you are chuckling for no apparent reason at all. I was told that the antediluvian often act incomprehensibly and that I should ignore their antics but... its proving to be a lot more difficult than I believed it would be."
"Eh, try not to think too hard on it, witch." My response seemed to only further her horror, though."Again you attempt to save some of my sanity from your own maddening influence... This does not bode well for my health, mental or physical."
I promptly decided how any further explanations can only cause more damage."How about a combination of all three tools?"
".... and how exactly would you combine a scythe, a hammer and a shovel?" Yomi questioned me and my sanity because of this statement.
"Well, for starters lets make it a scythe." I muttered out in the real world just as my infernal blade began to shift its shape, a smoldering mass of living metal forging itself... and yet, this is not a magical object. For it to shape itself into something greater than itself, it requires more raw material.
"W-what the?!" The witch, the vampire and the teenage wizard all stopped dead in their tracks as the very earth, the shattered buildings and the air around them began to flow into my risen sword, the matter of everything present being consumed and then transformed into something else entirely. Within moments, the scythe was forged. A terrifying weapon in its own right, its long two meter handle held a silvery gleam. The blade of the scythe held two distinct colors, the low one a dark crimson and the top pure white, yet while crimson was a color distinctive to chaos, it was not the molten form the sword usually took.
Something I noticed immediately after the forging had finished however, was that breathing had become very difficult in this place. A lot of people were coughing pretty badly too. Hn, so the amount of matter required was so high that the concentration of breathable air was affected too?
Or does HI manage the amount of oxygen the Inhumans get to breathe...
Y'know, I sort of don't want to know the answer of either question to be perfectly honest."Neither do I." Yomi wholeheartedly agreed with my assessment."Anna, be ready to take flight! Witch, I sincerely hope you don't mind if we took this outside."
I did not hear my enemies' answer as I called upon the powers of the Life Engine."In order to preserve the lives of everyone inside of this dome, I must bring it to the surface!" My sudden exclamation gave me some pause. Why the hell did I just say that?
... the life engine seems to have reacted to the words, though.
A mass of energy entered my body and lifting the entirety of the Inhuman Undercity became extremely easy. My mind enveloped every single bloody thing around us and lifted it through the earth and water above us within seconds. Once I could feel the fresh air of the outside, I burst open the top of this blackened coffin box, allowing everyone present to breathe once more."Hm.. so the life engine reacts to dramatic statements? Who would've fucking thought."
"Sounds like a power source built specifically for you." Yomi cooed into my ear in a rather seductive tone, despite the sentence said not being sexy at all."Uhh..."
"... sorry, its just that.. well..." She edged me on and I felt my spirits returning to me."As soon as possible, baby."
Don't mind me guys and girls! I'm just a line break...
GONNA TAKE A STOP HERE.
I don't know how many words this is.
I don't care.
My fingers hurt.
Probably because I didn't write in so long but meh.
As per usual, I'll stay on for a bit to fix mistakes and answer early comments!
Anyways, read and review! And Good Morning/Day/Night to you all! ADIOS FOR NOW!