|Circle of Heroes|
|Series||A Twist in the Road: The Black City by Jewelist|
|Previous||A Recollection of Memories|
|Next||The End Is A New Beginning|
|← A Recollection of Memories||Chapter Chronology||The End Is A New Beginning →|
7. Circle of HeroesEdit
Compared to the darkness of the sky, the stone above the Guild Cave was bright, its withered surface smooth and reflecting the moonlight. Hannah, Garth, Reaver, and Theresa were all spread apart. The three other Heroes standing next to the places that marked what Hero they were. In the center was a design on one of the plates that I couldn't make out. It almost looked like arrows pointing in between the circle created by the other plates.
"What exactly does Lucien want?" Reaver asked, almost sounding curious.
Hannah snorted. "Aside from God-like power, hmm... Tough one." She folded her arms. I wasn't sure if it was out of irritation or fear. Maybe both.
"No," Reaver shook his head, not buying it. "That kind of power is a means, not an end. What does he want to do?"
Garth looked up from his statue-still position. "When I knew him, he wanted to resurrect his family." Then he added, "Probably still does, but... Give a beggar a million gold, he'll buy food- until he's full. And then he realizes bread isn't the only thing for sale." We all took in what Garth said, and then Theresa spoke up.
"Now we can begin. Sparrow, stand in the center. You represent that which binds the three together: Strength, Skill, and Will. Together you will call forth the great weapon that will defeat Lucien." Everyone shifted onto their stone so that they were directly in the centers, so I did the same, feeling uneasy.
I caught a glimpse of Phoebe. She looked weak, strong enough to stand, but not for long. Her hand was clutching her dagger, but if it came to a fight, then I wasn't sure how she would protect herself. I hoped no harm would come to her, because I didn't even know whether or not that I was going to be able to protect myself.
Plate by plate began to light up. When all were lit, I heard Reaver ask what they were supposed to do now. I stood very still. The lights were similar to those that Lucien had placed myself and Rose on to test our blood. I closed my eyes, I tried to imagine I was elsewhere. Just as I had pictured my sister in mind, I felt something pulsing into me. My eyes flickered open, and I saw Hannah, Garth, and Reaver all floating, as well as myself, and streams of light connecting me to them.
In an instant, we all dropped. I didn't like seeing my friends doubled over, or kneeling, close to faint.
Hannah moaned, pulling herself to her feet. "Bloody hell... That... Hurt."
Across from me, Garth was trying to pull himself up off the floor. "I agree..."
"I did enjoy making that pretty light with you, but with that done, what happens now?" Reaver questioned, making me feel like hitting him. Quickly I reminded myself that a lot of people felt like hitting Reaver.
At last on his feet, Garth shook his head. "I... Don't know. He crossed beyond the far edge of my knowledge when he stepped into the center..."
Hannah had regained her posture mostly, and she was studying every inch. "Wait, where's Theresa?"
I heard Reaver let out a little sigh. "Well, this can't be good..."
From the corner of my eye I noticed another Shard. Before I could yell to get ready, straggles of lightning poured around us, creating a large white flash. When it faded, I saw that Theresa was gone, and in her place stood Lucien, and all around us stood his men. I had no idea where Phoebe was now. "Ah, the Heroes. Enough power to build a new world and you waste it trying to save the old one."
Hannah's voice broke in. "You're... You're Lucien." She sounded fearful.
Garth growled through his teeth: "Open your eyes, Lucien. The ruins of the Old Kingdom are all around us."
He chuckled sinisterly. "And soon they will be buried under the New Kingdom. You are looking at the new king." Lucien sounded quite sure of this, and I grit my teeth.
In a sneer, Garth replied darkly. "Pretender. Your fall will be hard indeed."
Reaver spoke then. "Um, deal still stands, Lord Lucien. Er, King Lucien?" I could have sworn, and nearly did until Hannah interrupted once again.
"Oh, Reaver, will you shut it!" She hissed, and I could imagine her angered face. However, I kept my glare set firmly on Lucien.
"In fact, you can have these people," Reaver inquired, causing my glare to switch over to him, and if I had been able to move, I would have knocked him senseless.
Lucien crossed his arms. "And so I shall," He said somberly, smirking humorlessly. "And you, as well." I waited for something to happen, but Hannah yelled out:
"Where is she?"
"Your fortune-teller friend?" Lucien questioned, momentarily distracted.
"What have you done to her!" Demanded Hannah. I said a quiet prayer for Theresa, and Phoebe, wherever they had disappeared to.
"I merely listened." From my spot, I saw that sick, heartless smile on his lips. My hands twisted into fists as the other Heroes and Lucien's men all vanished in the scraggly bolts of light. That left me and Lucien, and perhaps Marten.
"I should have gone out into the dark and found your body that night," Lucien said lamely. "But I was hasty, I let the blood line flourish... And... You have flourished. But this time is different. The last of the Heroic blood will flow out onto this hill top. The world will change after it." He raised a drawn pistol at me, arm shaky at first. Marten yipped, and jumped as the shot rang out, falling to the rocks, limp. My eyes bulged out of my skull, but I was too shocked to scream. I felt an instant sob well up into my throat, choking me into complete silence.
Lucien walked forwards, eyes unmoving. "Pitiful creature. Misguided, weak." I wanted to slaughter him right then for talking about Marten that way, but through my rage, I heard him say: "The last time I killed you, it tore my heart out." He aimed again, the pistol lined up with my thundering heart, and then continued: "Of course, you were only a child..." Lucien paused, his eyes taking on a scary, mad shine. "But then... So was I." I heard the fire, and my world went dark.
Somewhere in the darkness I heard Theresa's voice, a familiar saying:
"Death is not your destiny today, Little Sparrow."