112 A Nightmare Awakened*
Phil's grin was chilling, his hood falling away as he spun to meet another enemy, his steps flawless and elegant.
Jeremiah had been shocked to find the young man helping out. Even more surprised to find the skill he fought with. But one thing was clear as Ewan and his forces focused on this new threat.
Phil was not a Shadow Magician. As far as Jeremiah new, a Shadow Magician, or any Magician for that matter, did not have red eyes nor fangs.
Ewan rose to his feet, his gaze following Phil for a moment before he turned to Jeremiah, swinging his sword. Jeremiah blocked the blow, kicking at Ewan and forcing him back a couple of steps.
"What are you doing?" asked Jeremiah.
"Taking what's mine!" snapped Ewan.
Jeremiah sighed in exasperation, "None of it was ever yours to begin with, it won't ever be yours in future. Not the ship, not the crew, certainly not the recognition. None of it".
Ewan ran forward with a growl of anger, clashing with Jeremiah once more.
The sword slashed across another victim, and more blood flowed, joining the symphony around him as Rassa revelled in the battle. It was seamless, easy to fall into as if it was exactly what he was born for. As if this was where he belonged. He didn't bother using his Chaos given abilities, if he did that the fight would be over too quickly. Giving his enemies a chance, no matter how unlikely they were to take it, seemed more exciting than just ending it. Despite four enemies attacking him at once, Rassa didn't feel any pressure. In fact, he felt that even if they were to all attack at once, the fight would still be too simple. It made him disappointed. Finally he had the chance to fight and it wasn't even a challenge.
More blood flowed, joined by screams of agony and fear. Rassa lunged forward, imbedding his sword in an unwilling victim before picking up another, spinning to meet a blow coming from behind. He parried, knocking his attacker off balance and kneeing him in the chest before spinning back, a back kick to the face knocking the opponent out as he slammed to the ground.
Rassa's sword was up in an instant, blocking the blow of another attacker. Rassa's red gaze met the attacker's eyes, and the attacker's eyes widened in fear.
"Not even a challenge," Rassa growled unhappily, throwing off his attacker then slashing across his torso as he moved forward.
Another few moves, and his enemies were dealt with.
Ewan's forces were overwhelmed by what was left of Jeremiah's crew, and Rassa's eyes settled on Ewan himself. The man was more skilled than his allies, even managed to wound Jeremiah on his upper arm and thigh. Jeremiah didn't seem the least bit bothered by the pain though, if anything he seemed angrier.
"You're not winning this," Jeremiah declared.
Ewan grinned, "You're not either, old man".
Ewan stepped forward and with a quick move that Jeremiah didn't expect, disarming the old Captain before thrusting his sword forward.
"Captain!" Aaron shouted.
Rassa was there in an instant, meeting the blade with his own as he parried the blow, twisting it so the blade bypassed Jeremiah. Rassa grinned in his bloodlust, preparing to move forward and deal with Ewan once and for all, but a sound caught his attention. A sound that he didn't expect.
Rassa turned, following the sound.
The blade that Ewan held had indeed bypassed Jeremiah, but rather than meeting empty air, it had instead met with flesh as Aaron had lept forward to help his Captain.
Aaron met Rassa's red gaze, and Rassa was thrown. It was the same gaze, the same haunting, questioning gaze that he'd dreamed of for over a month. The image of his father, or all his friends and family pinned to the cave walls flashed in his minds eye, and Rassa's red gaze faded instantly, the bloodlust replaced by pure fear.
He paused, staring at Aaron disbelievingly. His fault. It was his fault. If he hadn't interferred then...
Rassa dropped his sword with a clang, looking up at Jeremiah who was moving to catch Aaron as the boy dropped. Ewan's sword was pulled back and Aaron flinched at the pain. Ewan withdrew, and Rassa's back was exposed as Ewan prepared to deal another blow.
Rassa instincts at the impending danger kicked in, and he spun, catching the blade then placing a hand on Ewan's chest as he pushed. His speed kicked in, and Ewan's back met with than of an alley wall shrouded in shadow.
Rassa's brown-eyed gaze met Ewan's. Ewan's triumphant grin failed as he realised he couldn't move under Rassa's grip.
"Wha-What are you?" asked Ewan's.
"Shall I jog your memory?" asked Rassa. But he could no longer hear the symphony of blood as he leaned forward and sunk his fangs into Ewan's neck. He no longer revelled in the sound of death and flowing blood. He just drank. Drank until Ewan had long gone pale and his heart had stopped beating, then he licked the wound and stepped back to watch Ewan fall like a rag doll to the ground, the sword clanging on the stone street.
Rassa's fangs retracted, and he wiped his mouth.
Disgusting. It was the dirtiest blood he'd ever tasted. But who cared when he himself was so much worse?
Phil had disappeared in an instant, Ewan with him, and Jeremiah was left to catch Aaron as he fell. The wound in his abdonmen was severe, but Jeremiah worked quickly to staunch the bleeding.
"C-Captain?" asked Aaron.
"Quiet, you'll be fine, just keep breathing through it, don't fall asleep," Jeremiah instructed.
Aaron gulped and closed his eyes tight before he opened them again.
"It-it hurts," Aaron said.
"I know it does, now quiet, it'll hurt more when you talk," Jeremiah insisted. He looked up at Tank and a couple of the others, "Run ahead, get a physician ready".
"Now!" snapped Jeremiah. He didn't care that they all thought Aaron didn't have a chance. He'd be doing the boy a disservice if he gave up so easily.
It wasn't until hours later when the cart was safely unloaded into a warehouse and Aaron was being treated in his critical state that Jeremiah finally had time to think about what had happened that evening. About the boy who was not a Shadow Magician, but had moved so quickly that Jeremiah was sure it was some time of instaneous movement ability rather than pure luck. He'd been informed that Ewan was dead. He'd been found two streets over from where the fight took place, drained of blood but no visible wound in sight.
Jeremiah had no idea why that kid had interfered, but one thing was sure, he did owe the boy his life, even if his move had caused Aaron to meet a yet to be determined fate.