So! This is literally one of the few RP's I finished with my best friend on this site, @_zombie_ who used to be my writing partner. Oni Country was a project that involved my heavily involved and infamous version of Puzzler (A.K.A Ivan Que/I.Q) that was what I consider one of my best works. I just found it in a dusty old Microsoft word file and chose to tweak it and convert it to be a more so story format.
In case you weren't around then. Ivan Que was based off of artist Sean Murphy's interpretation of John Constantine. And "Drake Blackhall" was a sonic screaming mutant best friend/bisexual interest. Tell me what you think. I might bring Ivan Que back
Ivan stood at the front of the old junk heap of a ship him and Drake were hitching a ride on heading for Japan. He enjoyed a cigarette as the ship was ripping through the ocean as quick is it could as he thought of why he was on a junk heap of a ship with Drake heading towards Japan. A series of gruesome deaths have occurred in a small village located in the Japanese countryside, the main reason why Ivan would even lift a finger to travel this far was because one of the people murdered was someone he knew. Satomi Akio, a woman that took care of Ivan in his final days of his terminal cancer, before he died, before he came back as a fallen angel. It was easy enough for Ivan to bring Drake along, a free trip to a beautiful land was hard to pass up for anybody, though Ivan didn't know if Drake caught the whole part about possible occult related people and demons being involved in the murders.
Drake adjusted his coat as he stood, then wrapped his scarf closer to his face. "W-why c-couldn't we leave when it wasn't fcking freezing out?" His speech was broken up at parts by the chattering of his teeth. Crossing his arms in front of him, he hugged himself in an ill-conceived attempt to gain more warmth. "And w-why are w-we going on a junker like t-this? Tickets for a decent boat aren't that-" He stopped, then turned off to the side and sneezed. "..expensive." He unfolded his arms, then reached into his bag and pulled out some tissue. After wiping his nose, he stuck the package back into the bag. "You're j-just lucky I've always wanted to g-go to Japan..Ivan seemed almost unaffected by the cold, either that or he just wasn't showing that he was freezing. He merely chuckled while taking a drag of his cigarette and looked over to Drake and his physical peril due to the cold. "Because Blackhall, ever heard of being subtle? I can't even begin to describe the laws I have broken in my line of work, sometimes I didn't even have a choice...Also the fact that I am still dead to the rest of the world! I mean if I waltzed into an airport with a passport of a dead man, they will be convinced I am a terrorist or some sh!t like that..". Ivan grumbled as he complained about the downfalls to coming back from the dead. "Just crack on for Christ's sake, your acting like you have the damned plague.."."
"My hair is purple. You really think subtlety is my forte?" He shot back, glaring over at him. "Not like you couldn't just.. forge a passport? They do it on Supernatural all the time. Though, admittedly, no one in their right mind would fall for someone calling themselves Jimmy Paige, but still!" Drake grabbed at the coat and pulled it tighter around him. "I never handle being sick well. And I'm from California. We're terrible at handling the cold."
"Well live in London your whole bloody life and you wouldn't mind a little drizzle and cold.." Ivan stuffed his hands in his trench coat. "I told you not to mention that damned T.V show anymore, a mockery of this world..I could do that, but like I said, I love myself some subtly..Besides, the harbor we are arriving at isn't exactly legal let alone safe..".
"Still a good show.." He mumbled under his breath, not mentioning the fact that he ran a Destiel blog on tumblr. "Wait.. you didn't mention this before. How not legal and how not safe? Because I don't wanna wind up getting kidnapped by the Yakuza on my first visit to Japan."
"Why not? I was? Wanted me to exorcise their big boss's wife..I did, then ended up shagging her too.." Ivan chuckled at the nostalgia before flicking the cigarette away. "The harbor has been run down for years, all because of an apparent curse that was put on the entire portion of that land..Powerful stuff. The village we are heading for it in the epicenter of that curse.." Ivan looked over with a grim expression.
"Call me crazy, but I don't like the prospect of being tortured." He sneezed twice in succession. "Oh boy. Always wanted to run into a cursed village and risk whatever it'd bring down upon me."
"If everything goes according to plan we should be jusssst fine!" Ivan punched him on the shoulder before looking at the sun set. "Sucks that nothing ever truly goes to plan..Anyway, I think we should both get some shut eye..".
Drake winced, stumbling back a little more than a normal person would. "Yeah.. got it." He chewed at his bottom lip. "Night.. I guess." He walked off to go find wherever it was that he was supposed to sleep.
"What the hell is that lad's damage?" Ivan mumbled to himself as he pulled out another cigarette and lit it. "I mean you would have to try that hard to be that uncomfortable all the time.." He stated out loud once again before walking into his cabin.
Ivan thrashed about in his bed, screaming loudly and knocking his things off the night table beside him in the midst of his night terror. Drake didn't sleep at all. In fact, he mostly sat up all night, sick as a dog. By the time morning came, the sickness had thankfully ebbed enough for him to get out of bed. It was still there, though. It took him a little while longer than usual to get dressed, but when he was, he stepped out onto the deck.
Ivan was already standing out on the deck, a cigarette in his mouth. Large bags were under his eyes from little to no sleep last night, this didn't stop him from noticing the dilemma they were about to face..."Hey Drake...I have some good news and bad news for you, which one do you want to hear first?".
"Good, preferably. But my gut says you're going to give me the bad first anyways." He was still unusually cold, and was thankful that he'd grabbed his coat before walking out.
"Ok...Well the good news is that we are a few more hours before we finally reach Japan, and our harbor.." Ivan said while walking across the deck, tying his luggage to a life preserver. Next he grabbed onto the railing firmly with his gloved hands.
Drake was actually surprised that he'd gotten the good news first. However, that just meant that he had to brace himself for the bad news. "Please tell me there's not a kraken in the water or something?".
"Hahaha!" Ivan laughed while shaking his head. "No! Not this time of season anyway..No we are about to be hit be a massive storm, I sensed it in my sleep, it is being caused by black magic..". Ivan pointed to the sky, literally turning black in an instant. Lighting came crashing down into the water and an unholy wind picked up, a practical flood came down from the sky and pelted the ship full force.
Drake lost his footing when the flood hit the side of the boat. "Alright, when that's about to happen, give me the bad news first!" He regained his balance. "How bad? Like.. shipwreck bad?"
A loud unsettling cracking noise could be heard echoing throughout the ship, Ivan ran over to the main hatch for the ship's hull and popped it open, seeing water flood into the ship at an alarming rate. Ivan slowly closed the hatch and looked back over to Drake. "... Possibly..."
"Should have stayed home." He mumbled to himself. "Please tell me this piece of junk has life boats.". "Well maybe we should check that o-" Ivan didn't get to finish his sentance on the account of a bolt of lightning coming down in between him and Drake, sending him a few feet in the other direction. His back hit the railing and he toppled over onto the lower half of the deck, knocking him out cold.
Drake was sent flying back towards a cargo container on the top deck. His head struck against it first, hitting an edge of it. Thankfully, it didn't knock him out. Though when he got up, his vision was about as blurry as it could get. "Ivan?" He called out, looking around. Ivan was gone, which meant that he had to stumble his way across the deck to where he'd last seen him. It was an effort, to say the least. Every few moments, his knees threatened to give out from under him. The blow to the head had done some damage to his coordination, if only temporarily. Eventually, he reached the railing and looked over. Below, he saw Ivan.. and he wasn't moving. "Sht." He muttered. After a moment of trying to prevent himself from panicking, he slipped over the edge of the deck, holding onto the railing with his hands. Thankfully, he was able to keep a grip long enough to make it down to Ivan. Bending down in front of him, he grabbed him by the face. "C'mon.. wake up.."
Ivan's eyes fluttered a few times before he gasped. "Dammit!" He yelled as he was quick to get to his feet. "Come on we need to find a life boat or somethi-...". Ivan's mouth dropped open as he saw a massive wave tower above the ship, at least ten stories high. "Drake..Find a life boat..Now.." The magus said calmly and shoved him away, he ran to the side of the ship where the wave was going to impact and held up his hands. "NAECO EHT FO ECROF ,UOY LEPER I!" He screamed, and just as he did, a light formed around the wave, holding it back as if a wall was in it's way. Ivan yelled at the top of his lungs as he could feel the wave's pressure in his very being. "DRAKE! FIND THE DAMN BOAT!"
"I'M TRYING!" He hollered back, sprinting off towards the side of the boat. Sure enough, he found the boats hanging off of the side. "Ivan, over here!" He shouted, looking around for something to cut the rope tethering the boats.
"HURRY!" Ivan screamed as he was still holding back the massive wave. "No, you have to come here! They're already inflated, they're just tied to the ship. And they're way too heavy for me to drag by myself." He found a fire ax in a red box on the wall. Sucking in a breath, he let out a sonic scream, shattering the glass. After that, he pulled out the ax. "We're just gonna have to run the risk of the wave hitting the ship!".
"..Bullocks..." Ivan muttered as he let his arms down and went into a full sprint towards the boats, the wave destroying the ship right behind him. Ivan wasn't fast enough however and was consumed by the massive wave, vanishing into the wreck. If Drake didn't move quickly, he too would be consumed.
"Sht." His eyes went wide with panic. Drake wanted to go back and grab Ivan if he could, but he didn't have much choice besides jumping into the life raft. At the last moment, he cut the ropes holding it up and was sent plummeting into the ocean. "Oh god, oh god, oh god.." He repeated over to himself, holding onto the sides of the life boat for dear life. When he hit the ocean, ice cold water hit him, soaking him from head to toe. He gasped, but was hit with another wave that sent the small life boat floating off at a fast speed.
Hours later, Drake sailed through a thick fog, the water becoming more shallow. Drake was huddled up in a corner of the boat. His hair had just barely begun to dry, but his clothes were still soaked. It was a miracle that hypothermia hadn't set in awhile ago. Though, really, the numbness of his skin could be it setting in right now. He had long since given up trying to look out for land, only taking note that the water was getting shallow. To make things worse, his cold was gradually returning to full strength. He'd been sneezing and breaking out into coughing fits for the better half of the past hour. It struck him that without Ivan, he really didn't have any way of getting back home. And if he wasn't back within three weeks, he'd get fired. Two months after that, he'd lose his apartment. It struck him as odd that these were the things going through his mind when he was sitting in a small life boat, potentially freezing to death.
A figure rushed through the fog, tapping through the water like a stone being skipped upon it. Drake blinked, looking out into the fog. When he saw the figure, he got an inkling of hope. "..Jesus? Is that you?". The sound of wet feet smacked onto the boat, next was the unsheathing of a katana and it being pressed up against Drake's neck. The figure was still guarded by the fog.
Even in his miserable, sickly state, he still had the emotional capacity to feel fear. He went to scream, but the katana was pressed too close to his throat for him to get one out. "If this is the Yakuza, I swear to God I'm just a graphic artist that got stranded in the ocean. I'm NOT smuggling drugs for the Triads!" That came out terrible, and if it WAS Yakuza, they probably didn't even understand English anyways. "So.. please just let me go?".
"Who is mad enough to enter these cursed lands?" A voice asked, clearly having Japanese be his first language, and English his second. The man stepped out of the fog, he was tall, muscular and was only wearing the pants of a samurai. His blade was still held neatly against Drake's neck as he stared at him with unwavering eyes.
"My friend. Ivan. He's this British guy.. blonde hair, smells like cigarettes with a hint of whiskey. Always has a trench coat on, kinda rude, nasty temper." He realized he was beginning to ramble, and got quiet. "..I kinda just followed along. Because I'm stupid. And have nothing better to do besides sit around in my bedroom and look at tumb-" He stopped himself again.
The young man raised his brow, coming from a village that forbade any technology or modernization, he was at a loss. "This, smoking man, I think he may be the one we have in our village..I could perhaps show you the way". "Yeah.. just, please take the sword off my throat. Kinda hurts." He winced, not fully realizing that he had a scream pent up in the back of his throat.
The man paused before spinning his blade and sliding back into it's sheath attached to his hip. He lent out his hand to him. The realization hit him after it happened. An ear-shattering sonic scream was let loose from his mouth, lasting for a good few seconds before he stopped it. "..oops."
The man screamed as he was sent off the boat and back into the fog, a loud splash could be hard shortly after. "Goddamnit." He muttered. Resigned to floating around, he curled up on the boat, attempting to gain warmth. It'd be a long time before he got to shore..
When Drake woke up, he wasn't moving anymore. In fact, he didn't hear the sound of the ocean all around him. Just behind him. Raising his head up, he saw that he was at the shore. Looking about, he made sure there was no one nearby before stepping out onto the beach. "Ivan.. I'm going to kill you."
Only moments after he stepped onto the beach, a horde of samurai charged out of the forest and unsheathed their blades. Once in a combat stance, they glared at Drake, even the man from earlier was there. "This is the one! The wailing demon!".
"Oh, goddamnit!" He yelled, turning around and taking off at a sprint. Sure, he could take out a few with the scream.. but that'd just piss off even more people. So he ran as fast as his bony legs would carry him, which was actually pretty fast, considering how underweight he was.
One of them got back on their horse that they had in the forest and tailed behind Drake, using a tight rope to throw around his neck to snag him. Drake felt himself get jerked backwards right before the rope circled around his neck. The breath was choked out of his lungs right before he felt himself hit the dirt.
Drake found himself bound by the wrists and being pulled behind the man on the horse. He could feel a Katana pressed up behind his back.
Drake had gotten silent awhile ago. Normally, he would have been trying to shout out excuses to get himself out of the situation. Not this time. He did, however, let a sentence slip. "This is all just one big mistake.". "Hush banshee..." Said one of the villagers. Finally they arrived past a wooden gate, and were in a bustling village. I didn't take long before some of the people gathered around to observe the stranger with purple hair. Some booed and some spat at Drake's feet. "Demon! Demon!" Yelled one of the elders, sitting in a chair and smoking a hookah. Finally they arrived in what looked like the center of the village. Atop a stone circle, bound by multiple strands of rope, was none other then Ivan Que. With a smirk, he puffed on a broken cigarette that was on it's last few drags. "Mate, please tell me you found my pack of cigarettes..".
Drake lowered his head in an effort to dodge any potential incoming projectiles. He'd been in this situation many times before. Except not bound and in grave danger. Instead, it was while running through the halls of his high school, attempting to dodge the projectiles his classmates had been throwing at him. He couldn't quite tell which he preferred more. When he saw Ivan bound up, his heart sank. He'd been hoping that Ivan was alive, and would bust in any moment to save him.. but this happened. "Please tell me you have a way out of this." He hissed back.
"Do you really think I was going to walk all the way to the village? I let them capture me so I could get in easily, just did a few tricks with my lighter and now they think im a demon..Im guessing you showed them your singing voice?" Ivan conversed with Drake subtly as Drake was getting bound beside him.
"On accident." He winced, squirming about before being harshly jabbed in the ribs with the bottom of a wooden pole. "You know.. bondage isn't nearly as much fun when there's men with swords threatening your life.". "Im used to it.." Ivan realized just how odd that sounded, then sighed. "In Russia, I had to go to a bondage club often so I could keep tabs on a torture demon..So yeah..".
"I usually do that for fun. Not.. nngh.." He struggled again, but got the message when he was jabbed again, harder this time. Drake was pretty sure he felt a rib or two crack. "..like this. How the hell are we getting out of here?". "Oh we could get out of these bindings easy, just a spell and we are undone! But I don't abuse magic like that..Observe..". Ivan waited for the village's elder to approach the two, a wise glare was shot at both of them, Ivan kept his smirk on his face. The elder did not take well to the magus's snarky expression, and gave a nod to the pole bearer to give him a smack over the head, Ivan only chuckled as his head jerked forward. "Nice to meet you too.." Said Ivan with his smirk still strong. "What is it you want with our people, demon?" Asked the elder, kneeling down to observe the two. "Well other then enjoy the lovely countryside...We are here to stop the real demon that attacks and maims your people.." Ivan raised a brow as he stated his purpose. The elder ran his fingers through his long beard and squinted, "This could be but a ruse, three demons conspiring to stab us when we have our backs turned..".
Ivan grinned cocking his head to the side. "Oh but I am a demon, and so is my friend here..But we are here to purge the evil that plagues your land, consider yourself grateful.." Ivan rolled with the demon charade, to instill fear in the villagers, all a part of his con.
"You'd think with how easily they caught me.. it'd be freakin' obvious that I'm not a demon." He mumbled under his breath. Unfortunately, the guard next to him caught that, and smacked him in the chest again. "Ow! Stop fcking doing that!" He shouted.
Ivan looked over and shushed him with a glare. "If you do not let us go..And let us stop this demon in peace and freely, we will ravage your village in seconds.." Ivan glared at the old man, which the elder only chuckled. "You do not frighten me demon, you and your accomplice are weak, us mortals easily catching both of you with ease...Execute them.." Said the elder to the two men that stood beside Ivan and Drake. As soon as they drew their katanas, Ivan grinned like a misfit. "...snomed su ekam ot lliw ym ot dneb ,thgil..." He whispered under his breath. Suddenly there was an increase of heat in the air, the area around both Ivan and Drake started to glow black and red. The two swordsmen grew wary of the event and backed off a bit. Within a second, there was a loud sonic boom, the light bending around Ivan and Drake to make them look like Japanese demons, red and blue skin, massive set of fangs and multiple arms as they roared furiously. The elder yelled as he stumbled back, the villagers cried in peril at the transformation and huddled to the floor in panic. After a few more moments of the hellish display, the returned back to normal.
Ivan grinned once more and gestured to his ropes. "Now...Untie me and my friend, and point us to our accommodation.." He said calmly. The elder nodded with wide eyes as their ropes were cut by the fear filled swordsmen. Ivan stood up and cracked his neck, dusting off his trench coat.
Drake got to his feet.. and almost immediately fell over. Bracing himself up against Ivan, he broke out into a fit of coughing, then recovered himself. "Sorry. I seem to have less patience as of late. Gets even worse after the third rib gets broken.". Ivan slung Drake's arm over his shoulder and helped him over to the house they were going to be using, the villagers wary of the two supposed demons. Once inside, he set him down on a bed mat.
"Now that we're alone.." Drake looked over at Ivan. "Are you out of your fcking mind?! You said it'd be dangerous, not get me nearly drowned, almost get my throat slit, tied up, dragged through the forest, tied up again, and smashed in the ribs four times with a goddamn pole!" He sat up to swing at Ivan, but felt pain shoot through his chest, forcing him back down onto the mat.
"For a second I thought you were going to try and snog me!" Ivan laughed out loud and looked around the house for a paint brush. "Shut up." He tried to relax, he really did. But everything hurt. It wasn't just the ribs, either. "What're you doing?". Ivan started painting sigils of all kinds all over the walls and floors. "If the demon is spectral, we need to make sure this house is warded".
"Why? I thought we were just going to find him, then leave?" His eyes followed the brushstrokes as Ivan painted them. "We need to purge this demon, you know that right? It's killing innocent people..Once I see one of the bodies, I can figure if this is a summoned demon, or an independent one. Maybe this is related to a cult.." Ivan explained while unbuttoning his shirt.
"That's what I meant. Sorry, the pain's kinda messing with my head. I'm guessing that either way, it's gonna be a btch to get rid of?". "It's strong, this village is packed with tons of wards and protection yet it has killed five people.." Ivan paints a sigil on his chest and buttons his shirt back up. He walked over to Drake and dabbed the paint brush. "Undo your shirt, and don't get any ideas mate..".
"Don't worry.. in no condition to do anything like that." He winced, then reached his arms up and un-did his shirt. The moment they were back down on the mat and unmoving, relief flooded back into him. Ivan started to paint the sigil. "After I find myself some bloody cigarettes..and maybe a decent shag, I will get some ingredients together to make some healing paste for your ribs mate..My aunt always said I should know at least some healing alchemy".
Drake tried to ignore the discomfort from having the sigil painted onto him. "It's not so much the ribs.. I've had that happen before.". "Oh so you don't want healing paste? Fine" Ivan chuckled. "Unless healing paste magically fixes muscular pain.. no. I think I'll live with a few broken ribs for now." He shut his eyes, sighing.
"It cures most physical pain you ponce.." Ivan finished the sigil and tossed the brush on the counter. "Might as well just relax for tonight, it's to late in the day to start pissin' off the villagers again.." Ivan mumbled while standing up. "Considering the sht you got us into.. you don't get to call me that." He breathed in, then out, experiencing intense pain from his broken ribs with each breath.
"Oh calm down Blackhall, your missing the thrill of it all!" Ivan sits down on the floor mat and double checks his coat for a stray cigarette. "I seem to have a problem with finding the thrill in anything. So it's not a surprise." He folded his arms behind his head, managing to get them into a position that wasn't excruciating.
Ivan sighed and shook his head. "Alright well now that we have some quality time together, why is it you come with me? On these adventures, even though you know the risks and I warn you every time?". "Wish I knew." Drake sighed. "Maybe I'm just masochistic. Or suicidal. Or I'm just bored and stupid.". Ivan only nodded while listening, looking out the window and into the village. "Why'd you ask me along? There's hundreds of people that are better suited to this life, and we don't exactly get along all that well.".
"Because I know the life you live is dull and boring, sure I could get a vampire or a merc or a shape shifter but that would just be boring for me! Having someone normal along makes it, I dunno feel more enjoyable" Ivan shrugged, getting him and cracking his shoulder. "Alright im going to browse around the village for some stuff, you get some rest alright?" Ivan said while walking towards the front sliding door.
"Got it." He laid his arms out by his sides, doing his best to remain still.
Later on in the middle of the night, a woman screaming loudly could be heard coming from one of the rooms in the house.
Drake sat up too quickly. His ribs had healed, but the muscles still ached. Getting to his feet, he walked off to go investigate the sound. The screaming originated behind a closed door at the end of the hallway.
Drake made it down the hall, then knocked on the door. "Everything alright in there?". The screaming stopped and there was a bit of giggling and whispering. "Yeah mate, just uh..Just fooling around in here don't worry.." There were a few more female giggles.
Drake rolled his eyes, then stalked off back to the room. He risked a near fall when his knee almost gave out, but recovered in time to slip into his room. The next morning, Ivan walked into the living space and set down a carton of cigarette packs, a large grin on his face. He managed to find a trader while he was looking through the village last night.
When Drake woke up, he was running a fever. He saw Ivan come in with a pack of cigarettes. "Well, you didn't waste any time last night.". "I have devised that if I go more then a day without a cigarette...I die.." He chuckled as he stuffed two packs inside his coat. "Wouldn't want that happening." Drake set his palms against the mat and pushed himself into a sitting position. "So.. what next?"
"Well the day is young, we are in one of the most beautiful countries on the planet...Lets go look at a dead body.." Ivan put on his classic black tie and adjusted it so it was a little loose. Next he packed his lighter and an extra pair of brown gloves, and subtly stuffed a photo of him and Amelia making silly faces in front of the record store in his breast pocket.
"Alright." With a bit of effort, he pulled himself up into a standing position. "Ready whenever you are". "Alright Blackhall, come along.." Ivan lit a cigarette and stepped outside, taking in a mix of fresh air and nicotine. "Ahhh..Japan..". Drake shot him a glare. He kept saying that, it annoyed him. "Yes.. if only we were visiting it under more pleasant circumstances".
Ivan looked about the village as the duo walked through it, Ivan glancing back at him. "The circumstances are fine with me". "I'd prefer circumstances where I'm not deathly ill and going to look at corpses." Drake saw the guard that had hitting him in the ribs with the pole. He faked like he was going to scream in his direction, and giggled profusely when the guard recoiled in fear.
The two arrived at the house where the most recent murder took place, outside it were some monks and priests waving incense sticks about and lighting candles while performing meditative humming. Ivan walked past the circle they had drawn around the house and let himself in. Drake almost stopped at the circle. Given the treatment the villagers had put him through thus far, he didn't feel inclined to respect them. He stepped inside after Ivan.
Ivan was already stranding over the blanket covered body, almost reluctant to lift the cloth, for he knew what body was under there. Drake himself wasn't too eager to lift the blanket. He couldn't quite place why, but he figured it had something to do with not wanting to upset his delicate stomach.
"...Oh bloody hell..." Ivan muttered before lifting the blanket quickly off the corpse. The body was a gory horrific display, organs everywhere, flesh bitten, scratched, ripped, peeled and nibbled at. Yet one of the most intact parts of the body was the face, the horrified face of Satomi Akio, Ivan's old friend. The magus himself just stood there, cigarette slowly burning away without him puffing at it, his eyes didn't blink for at least two minutes straight.
Drake covered his mouth with his hand. The stench alone almost had him on the brink of vomiting. Entrails splayed about didn't make it easy to hold it back. Eventually, he forced the bile back down his throat and looked over at Ivan. "What? What's wrong?". "..Hmm?" Ivan snapped out of the series of memories he had with her, all of those nights that were just for fun and meant nothing, all the times she tended to his wounds while he studied Japanese dark arts all those years ago. "Nothing, just not the prettiest site.." Ivan looked back down at his old friend with unwavering eyes.
"..Right." He knew that look. Ivan was lying through his teeth, but Drake knew better than to press it. "So.. how do we start with this?". Ivan pulled out a piece of chalk and started sketching a circle around the body. "Like this..". "Ah. Somehow I knew magic was gonna get involved." He breathed outwards, shoving his hands into his pockets. "Im a magus Drake..A magician, a sorcerer..What did you expect? A forensics team?" Ivan said with a raised eyebrow, still working on the circle. "That was sarcasm, genius" Drake hissed. "Sorry I was to busy not caring.." Ivan got rather serious and aggressive when he was dealing with ritual magic, it required maximum attention.
"Alright then.." He muttered, turning around and walking off to go look around the place. After ten minutes, the circle was complete, it was an elaborate combination of runes and smaller sigils and black magic. "Drake! Finished.." Ivan hollered at Drake to get back in the corpse room. Drake walked back in coughing into his arm. "What do you need me for?". Ivan pulled out a pocket knife and pointed at Drake. "I need a bit of your blood..".
"Wait, what? Why mine?" He stepped back a little, not overly fond of sharp objects being close to him. "Cause I need some of your blood for the circle and it needs some of mine too..We are about to perform black magic..And blood is almost always the currency mate..". "Oh. Was worried for a moment there that my blood was something special." He let out a sigh of relief, then held out his finger.
Ivan stabbed his finger quickly to insure it didn't hurt. Next he sliced his own hand open lightly across the palm, grabbing Drake's cut finger and pulling away. Squeezing his hand into a fist so that a stream of mixed blood poured down onto the edge of the circle. Drake winced when the knife pricked his finger. It was painfully evident by now that he didn't handle pain all that well. His eyes couldn't help but watch the blood as it poured onto the floor.
There were a few seconds of silence, as if it failed. Ivan took this time to light a fresh cigarette. Drake reached the still-bleeding finger up to his mouth and idly sucked on it. "Why's nothing happe-" Halfway through Drake asking his question, the corpse opened her eyes and gasped loudly. Drake jumped, then stumbled backwards, colliding into a wall. A porcelain flower case wobbled, then crashed to the floor. "What the hell?!".
Ivan simply chuckled and knelt down, brushing some clumps of hair away from her face. "Satomi..Love how are you feeling?" He asked with a smile on his face. Satomi panicked at first but was relieved when she saw Ivan. "Ivan, Ivan where am I? I can't feel anything..Anything.." She said as if she was a normal person, her eyes were unable to move due to the muscles around her face being torn to shreds. "You had an accident hun, your going to be fine you hear?" Ivan said as he placed his hand on her cheek and rubbed away some blood, causing him to smile slightly, this brought a smile to her mutilated face as well.
"Looks like the tables have turned you dastardly smoking man you.." She said with her eyes becoming soaked in tears. Ivan shook his head while smiling. "Aww love, no need for the waterworks, you'll be fine, honest.." He said with a nod, she smiled once again and attempted to nod with her broken neck. "Satomi I need you to try and remember the face you saw just before your accident ok?" Ivan asked while looking up at Drake, subtly pointing at his sketchbook.
Satomi took a second to think before speaking. "Long black hair at least more then ten feet long...Pale skin, almost like a doll..Arms like...Like a spider..Oh god it was terrifying Ivan...It was wearing a worn out night dress on...Like a little girl.." Satomi panicked a bit before Ivan shushed her with that smirk still on his face. "Thank you Satomi..Helpful as always my love..." Ivan picked up the other half of her body and hugged it. Satomi attempted to hug back, not even realizing that she had no arms to hug with. "I love you Ivan...I just wanted you to know ok? In case I dont make it.." She said with a lump in her throat.
"I know love, I know...". Ivan stood up and and stepped out of the circle, turning back with a look of despair on his face as he placed his shoe to swipe the circle, making a gap in it. This caused the corpse to set aflame silently along with the circle. Ivan didn't speak, he simply pulled out a cigarette and used the flame from the circle to light it.
Drake got quiet as well. The sight of the poor woman talking, apparently unaware of the fact that she was dead, was driven from his mind. After a few moments, Drake walked over and wrapped his arms around Ivan. "Don't get pissed off at me for this, alright? I just.. that's terrible".
Ivan didn't hold him back, he just stared at the flames through the wall of smoke that his cigarette created. "We have a description...Lets get back to our place and work from there..". "Sorry." He sighed, then broke it off. "I get.. overemotional sometimes. Following that, slightly affectionate. Blame my mother." Drake turned to walk out. "Let's go, then".
Ivan walked quickly through the village and made no fuss to get inside the house as soon as humanly possible, slamming the sliding door behind him. Drake flinched at the door slamming. "If you want.. I can just go for a walk, let you figure this out by yourself". "Do you enjoy my company, Drake? Just be honest" Ivan said as he leaned against the table, back facing Drake.
Drake was taken aback by the question. "Uh.. a tiny bit, I guess. You can be awfully rude, to be honest". "Oh, well good. Cause I forgot to tell you something" Ivan turned to face him, a scowl on his face. "If you start to care about me, as a friend or more then that? You will die, alright? Cause it has happened to everyone I have ever cared about, and it goes both ways. So just be careful cause you might be next.." Ivan glared before storming off to the back porch that overlooked a garden.
"Right." Drake got quiet, letting him leave. Turning around, he hopped himself up onto the table nearby.
Half an hour later, Ivan returns and removes his trench coat, draping it on a counter. "Drake do up a sketch of Satomi's description of the demon" He said while point at him and walking into the other room. "Already did." He held out the finished sketch. "I needed to distract myself, started drawing". "Good, pin it up on the wall.." Ivan said while snapping his fingers and pointing at the wall.
Drake nodded, searching about for a thumbtack or something. It took him awhile, but he found one and pinned the drawing up. "We got anything to go on?".
"We will in a second.." Ivan took a map of the area and pinned it up beside the sketch of the demon. Rolling up his sleeves he took a deep breath while clapping his hands together and rubbed them. "Go get a glass of water, splash it on my face after..". Ivan said quickly before pointing his open hands at both the sketch and the map. "EMOH SLLAC NOMED SIHT EREHW LAEVER OT LLIW YM SI TI" He yelled loudly. As soon as he did, his hand started to glow red, along with his eyes, hair flying upwards as if there was a massive gust of wind. Both the sketch and the map started to glow as well, in a matter of moments, there was a massive flash the engulfed the entire room. After the flash vanished slowly, Ivan was on the floor, out cold.
Drake went to get the water long before he finished the incantation. When he got back, Ivan was out cold on the floor. Bending down, he splashed it on his face. "You know, I'm starting to see a reoccurring pattern, here". "Oh im sorry, have you ever used magic before?" Ivan said as he hopped to his feet full of energy, pepped up and leftover magic energy. "There it is.." Ivan said as he pointed at the map, the sketch's thumb tack now pinned on a specific point on the map.
"Nope. Wouldn't mind trying sometime, though." He walked over to the map. "And that's.. kinda awesome". "One of the first I ever learned, after we survive this whole mess, I may teach you a few tricks..Maybe.." Ivan chuckled as he threw on his trench coat and grabbed a katana from the wall, slinging it on his back. "We are actually going to need to tool up for this thing..".
"Oh, boy.." He mumbled, neglecting to mention his complete lack of combat experience. "Uh.. what do I use?". "That lovely singing voice of yours and one of these.." Ivan tosses him a sheathed katana. "Oh and don't worry mate, I can't fight for shit either if that makes you feel better..".
"If you actually heard me sing, you wouldn't be making those snide little comments." He somehow managed to catch it. "It does, kind of". "Alright then, lets ride.." Ivan said with a grin as he placed a cigarette in between his lips. Drake suppressed something in between a snort and a giggle, then followed along after him.
It took four hours on horseback to ride through the valley that the village was located in, along the way was tons of amazing sights. They arrived at the cave just as the sun was setting. Drake climbed off of the horse when they got to the cave. He adjusted the katana on his back for the fifteenth time since they'd left, and it still felt awkward.
Ivan drew his blade and examined it. "God I hate swords, I am not a fan of getting up close and personal with anything that can rip my bloody head off..." Ivan mumbled as he lit a fresh cigarette and nodded at the cave. "..Right then..Lets hop to it.." He said with a sigh before walking through the entrance.
"I hate fighting in general." He followed in after him, awkwardly drawing his own blade. As the two got deeper into the cave, the more dark it became. Finally, they were in total darkness. "...thgil..." Ivan stated, instantly a orb of light floated above him by a few inches. "So all we know is that it is a spider demon.. Probably intelligent..".
"And prone to tearing up one's face and mutilating their corpses." He stated in a somewhat dismal tone of voice. "..And that.." Ivan gulped a bit. Finally they seemed to reach the center of the cave, hanging everywhere was massive strands of black hair, almost like a spider nest. I really hope it's quick." He looked about, and almost immediately he noticed something off in the distance. Upon focusing, he was alarmed to discover that it was a group of cocoons hanging from the ceiling. They appeared to be containing humans. "And I really hope I don't end up like that".
"Well if we are lucky...This thing will be corporeal, and wont need a hex to ki-" Ivan was cut off in the middle of his explanation by the demon dropping down from the ceiling, hanging from strands of black hair. The demon was right in Ivan's face, causing his jaw to drop wide open and freeze, slapping Drake to do the same. The demon resembled a scrawny woman with multiple bony long arms. Her skin looked like that of a cracked dolls, her face had no eyes but a massive mouth with fangs, long black hair covering most of it. Every time it moved, it creaked like old wood, neck cracking as it cocked its long neck sideways to stare at Ivan.
Out of sheer reflex, Drake screamed. And unlike any he'd ever belted out before, it was dual-layered in nature, being both sonic and ballistic. His breath was slammed out of his lungs as soon as soon as it was done with, but the demon was sent back pretty far. The demon sailed into the darkness, leaving Ivan and Drake to deal with the cocoons filled with human gore to drop around them, along with some loose rock from the ceiling. Ivan shook his head from falling down hard and snapped his gaze at Drake. "Are you f*cking mental!? If you scream then this cave will come down on us too!".
For once, he managed to keep his footing. "I freaked out! It just.. happened!" He shifted into a very poor combat stance, but was rudely interrupted when a strand of hair..web latched onto his leg and yanked him to the floor. "Shi-". "Drake!" Ivan yelled as he ran towards him, only for the demon to actually drop to it's hands and let out thee blood curdling scream of a woman, and swat at Ivan. The magus attempted a sloppy parry, only barely cutting off a few fingers, only to see them grow back. "DAMMIT!" He cursed as he was knocked away.
Drake felt the web wrapping around his feet. When he went to scream, webbing shot onto his mouth, sealing it shut before the scream could even begin. After a moment of despair, he got an idea. Raising his arm up, he slammed his fist down onto the ground. A deafening sonic boom thundered throughout the cave, sending the demon to the floor. Drake desperately looked around for something to pin it with. Looking up, he saw a spike-like rock formation hanging from the ceiling. The scream and his initial sonic boom had loosened it, but it would take more to knock it loose. Raising his hands up, he clapped, sending a direct wave of sound at the rock. It cut through with surprising precision, and he just barely had time to roll out of the way. The spike came flying downwards, driving itself through the demon's abdomen and pinning her.. it, to the ground.
Ivan groaned as he quickly got to his feet, walking up beside Drake and picking his cigarette up off the ground and sticking it in his mouth. "Good work Blackhall, pretty impressed.." Ivan said while patting him on the back. The demon stopped screaming and started...Laughing. This only made Ivan look over with a concerned brow. "What's so funny, you witch?" Asked Ivan with a tad of hatred. The demon hacked up some blood before actually speaking. "They told me if I killed your lady friend..You would come..." This was followed by more laughter. Ivan's expression went to wide eyes as he knelt down to it's demented face. "Who...Who told you to kill Satomi?" Ivan asked while grabbing it by it's hair. The demon slowly looked up at Ivan. "..The..Dark..Keepers...". Ivan knew it, he cursed while slamming it's head to the ground and standing back up. "They lured me here to try and kill me..And Satomi was just a means to an end... Conjured a storm to try and cut to the chase faster..".
After much effort, he ripped the webbing off of his mouth. "Ow.. fck." The webbing binding his feet followed a moment later. "It was either that or join one of those poor guys." He got to his feet, motioning to the cocooned corpses. "Alright, who're the Dark Keepers? The last one mentioned them, too". Ivan sighed and looked over to Drake. "They are bad news.. An ancient order that has been at odds with my family for centuries...".
"Awesome." He let out an exasperated sigh. "I think I want to go lie down now". "I need to deal with this slag first..." Ivan looked over at the demon. "It needs to be hexed..".
"Ah.. great." Drake leaned up against the wall, and almost immediately noticed the sharp pain in his arm. Looking over, he noticed that the bone was out at a slightly unnatural angle. "Even better". "Ahh Christ.." Ivan sighed as he looked at Drake's arm. "You really need to get some meat on your bones mate..". Ivan looked back over at the demon and placed his hand against it's head. "lleh fo nwaps ,morf emac uoy erehw ot kcab uoy hsinab I" He said almost calmly, within seconds the demon was consumed by a green flame and was gone.
"I'm perfectly fine." He retorted. "That thing just pulled on my arm really hard." He watched as the demon went up in flames. "Yeah but your like...A skeleton with a rubber glove pulled over it.." Ivan shook his head. "Eat!". "I'm fine!" He said, but louder this time. Turning around, he stalked off back towards the entrance of the cave.
Ivan rolled his eyes and followed Drake, only to look back and see a ghost of Satomi in the distance of the cave, beautiful and smiling, a nod of approval on her face.. Ivan simply gave a nod with a smirk and finally left the cave...