Malignant part 4

Continued from here part 3

Grigorri main house

As the sun rose Jared made it to a chapter in the hunter's histories called Acton the swordsman. As he read a memory came forth. Jared found himself on a battlefield. Acton stood over a severely injured Aaron and pleaded with a man in front of him, "If he's made like you, he will survive."

The tall Danish man looked them over, "There's no telling whether or not he'd even survive the process, and quite frankly I don't know if he deserves to. Not much good in a fight."

Acton pulled his sword and dagger, "I could just kill you and take your blood to save him."

The Dane rested a hand on the hilt of his sword, "Does he mean so much to you?"

"He's my brother, I will save him."

One of the Dane's comrades looked Acton over, "Grimmr, he's a hunter."

Grimmr nodded, "Then he will be replaced."

The Dane then shouted to his men, "If he wins, no vengeance will be taken. Am I understood?"

The men behind him all nodded as Grimmr pulled his sword and focused on Acton, "Are you sure?"

The hunter gave a nod. Grimmr then charged. His men seemed shocked when Acton blocked and slashed across Grimmr's chest. The took a step back and grinned, "I haven't been cut in a while."

Acton then swung for his head, he dodged but was caught in the arm by the hunter's dagger. The Dane then slashed at his hand removing Acton's dagger and three finger. He then swung hard at Acton's sword snapping the blade before driving his own deep in his chest.

Before he fell Acton grabbed Grimmr by the arm and looked into his eyes, "Please don't let him die."

Grimmr had a solemn look as he stared into the man's eyes. Acton slid off his blade as he fell to the ground. Grimmr looked on Aaron and spoke, "You owe that man a debt."

The memory faded to black in that moment.

Aaron spoke up from behind, "It was during the crusades, Grimmr and his people had no love for the Catholic church and the Muslims paid well."

Jared turned, "Did you get revenge?"

Aaron shook his head, "The Dane made me immortal and turned me into a warrior. Knowing what I do now, there was no other way it could have ended. You should be prepared for the possibility of an early death, I've never met a hunter that made it past 40."

***

Namtar stood just outside a protective barrier around the Grigorri main house and talked to the Oni behind him, "So close yet so far."

The Oni glared, "Why not just go take him?"

Namtar chuckled, "You young ones, always so impatient. It would take all the power I have just to keep from being ripped apart crossing this barrier, then I'd have to deal with a small army of magic users trained specifically to kill our kind."

"Then what was the point of coming here?"

"Its always a good idea to know where the enemy hangs his hat."

The Oni rolled his eyes, "And why am I here?"

"To send a message."

He then pushed the Oni over the line and watched him explode as alarms went off throughout the main house. Namtar then quietly slipped away as several people ran to look on the remains of the Oni. Their was a patch of skin in the shape of a hand with a simple message written on it, 'Hello, Jared.'

***

New York City

Namtar appeared behind the demon lord Asmodeus, "I don't see a hunter's head with you."

Namtar shrugged, "He's been shielded by the Grigorri."

"That was fast."

Namtar nodded in agreement, "That house did have much to be concerned about. The Dane's prized student was there, and it appears Ezra has collected your half monkey bastard as well."

He then turned to a large man sitting on a sofa in the office, "And speaking of half monkeys, You are Viggo?"

Viggo nodded, "Do not compare the Nephilim to half demon offspring."

Asmodeus glared at them, "We all serve the same master. Viggo's people have agreed to help us in exchange for aid in eliminating a problem of their own."

***

A new crater on the side of Mount Karpinsky along the Urals.

A man name Rick sits on a rock in tattered and torn clothing as a cigarette hangs from his mouth. He looked to a pair of dead Nephilim as Ezra appeared in front of him, "You made a bit of a mess."

Rick looked to the sorcerer with annoyance, "They started it. My people don't take no for an answer very well."

Ezra sat down on a rock near him, "Have you given any thought to my offer?"

"Since when do your hunters need help?"

Ezra sighed, "Something bad is coming, can't say for sure what it is but this world is going to be trapped in the middle of it. Whether he needs help or not is inconsequential, leaving the fate of billions on one man's shoulders is illogical and unfair."

Rick flipped away the butt of his cigarette, "Should have thought of that when you cast your spell."

"It wasn't my idea."

Rick sat in thought for a moment, "You still offering a pay check?"

Ezra nodded.

(To be continued)

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Malignant part 3

Continued from here part 2

Grigorri main house

Jessie escorted Jared around the ground floor as he lugged the large heavy book the gnome had given him. He was surprised that he was beginning to feel strain while holding it. As he considered it Jessie clapped his shoulder to get his attention back as she motioned toward the man practicing with a wooden sword, "Jarred Maxwell, meet Aaron. He's been an agent of the Grigorri longer than either of us have been alive."

Jared looked the man over noting he didn't look more than 25. Aaron noticed the confused look, "I'm a hell of a lot older than I look kid. You want a real shock have Ezra show you how he looks without that spell some time."

Aaron looked to Jessie, "He have any combat experience?"

Jessie shrugged, "I doubt it, he's only 19."

Aaron chuckled, "In my day he could have been a veteran by then."

Jarred dropped the book on a near by table with a thud. Aaron looked on the tome with a small grin as he tossed the wooden sword to Jarred, "I suppose I should take his measure."

Before Jared saw him move Aaron revealed another wooden sword and swung for Jarred's head. Without thinking Jared moved his sword and blocked while his other hand reached for his belt for reasons Jared couldn't quite explain. Aaron laughed as he looked at his stance, "Its instinct, you're going for a dagger. The hunter Acton was fond of paring sword and dagger."

Aaron stepped back before looking Jared in the eye, "Ready for a rematch old man?"

Jared heard a chuckle from inside his head as Aaron charged him again while gruffly speaking, "The abilities of your predecessors are within you."

Jared's body once again moved without him but Aaron struck him across the midsection with the flat of his blade and knocking the wind out of him.

Aaron stood above him, "Its just a matter of you learning to follow those new instincts."

A memory flashed to the image of the demon hunter Acton looking over armor he was wearing in a mirror as a young boy who bared a striking resemblance to Aaron helped him with the straps. Jared looked up from the floor to Aaron, "How do you know Acton?"

Aaron offered a hand to help him up, "I was his Squire, before our lives got strange. He taught me to use a sword when I was a boy."

Jared's eyes narrowed a bit, "You aren't human."

"Not for quite some time, no."

***

Aurora, Illinois

Namtar appeared in front of the home of Jared Maxwell and his father. He felt as the demon died inside the house and went to walk toward the house. He stopped at the sight of many very small, almost imperceptible arcane symbols on the lawn ornaments and furniture. He stepped back and muttered to himself, "The one inside must have been young, this place is clearly a death trap."

The door swung open to reveal Bob Maxwell. He stepped out on the porch and sat in a chair as he opened a beer. Namtar gave a slight grin as he spoke, "Don't suppose you'd just invite me in."

Bob shrugged, " I guess this means you haven't found my boy yet."

Namtar placed a hand on his hip, "Do you expect these traps to stop all of my kind?"

Bob chuckled, "Nope, but that old wizard has been calling for a couple days. I'm pretty damn sure none of you is gonna just stroll up on his lawn."

Namtar sighed, "This is just not my day, but do advise your son that a relatively quick death from me would be far preferable to what awaits him should I fail."

Bob sipped his beer and shrugged, "Why are demons always so damned dramatic?"

With that Namtar was gone.

***

New York City

A large man named Lloyd Wilson sits staring at a building. The office of the demon lord Asmodeus resides on the fifteenth floor. Lloyd had been watching this building for days biding his time, waiting for the demon lord to come out alone. As he stared a voice comes up next to him on a bench, "Its not like in the movies kid."

Lloyd turned to see Ezra as the wizard continued, "That building is a little patch of hell on Earth. No amount of righteous indignation is going to get you out alive. Being half demon isn't going to help either."

Lloyd glared at him, "Are you trying to scare me off?"

Ezra grinned, "No, I'm offering you the chance to help me get rid of the place. It sits here like a tumor. Sure its not the only place demons come from in this world but taking it down would be a hell of a black eye for them."

Lloyd turned, "Who said I wanted out alive?"

Ezra shrugged, "Its a moot point since you wouldn't make it past the receptionist without help. Meaning you walk in there now or try to take him out when he comes out the door, you'll die. No revenge, no closure, just instant death."

"So how are you going to help?"

The bench suddenly appeared before the Grigorri main house, "You'll see."

(To be continued)

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Splicers: The Corps part 20

Continued from here part 19

Rob and the rest looked on in horror as the monster of a man hurled Kirby through the small guard shack. He then turned to face them. Rob looked to Hollis, "Who the hell is that?"

Hollis shrugged, "No idea."

They heard a laugh from behind and Rob turned to see Markus Drake, "Rossini says he's got a bunch of names. Hercules, Gilgamesh, there's even a good chance Paul Bunyun was based on this guy. Regardless of what you call him, he's probably gonna kill you."

As he spoke the man snatched Rob and Hollis up by the throats and looked ready to crush them when he was struck by a chunk of wall from behind. Agent Johnson's voice echoed in the big man's ear as he ordered him to crush the two he held but a grin crept across his face and he dropped them.

He turned to Kirby and bellowed, "You think you can beat me?"

Kirby cracked his knuckles as he answered, "Only one way to find out."

Agent Johnson hit his comm and spoke to Rossini, "He ignored an order."

Rossini nodded as he watched a monitor, "I noticed."

"Should I shut him down?"

"No, I want to see how this goes."

The big man charged toward Kirby. As he came in striking distance Kirby slammed a fist into his jaw sending him to the ground and letting out a shock wave that rattled the ground around them. The big man looked up to Kirby with a smile as blood dripped from his mouth, "That's the spirit boy."

He then drove a foot into Kirby's gut and launched him into the air. Before he landed the man was up and caught him with a right hook that drove him hard into the ground. He then moved to grab him but Kirby punched him in the knee before raising a shoulder into his gut and slamming him down. As they landed, the man drove a hard shot into Kirby's kidney and flung him off. He then rolled over and got Kirby in a head lock when he whispered in his ear, "Break the collar if you can, I do not wish to fight you but I cannot hold back."

Kirby grabbed his arms and forced them apart as he threw him off. He then attempted to go for his throat.

Across the field Emerson pulled herself up as Drake appeared behind her with a gun, "You shoulda stuck with clubbing girl."

As he pulled the trigger he was shocked to see her dodge at such close range. She then drove a fist into his gut before slamming an elbow into his mouth. She snatched the gun but he was gone before she could shoot. He appeared behind her and attempted to grab her but she turned quick and delivered a high kick to the side of his head.

Agent Johnson passed up through the ground behind Rob, Ellis and Hollis to take them out but Ellis had seen it coming and slammed the but of his gun into the Agent's nose as he went solid. The team then focused on Kirby's fight.

The two monstrous men squared off and charged at each other. The man tried to punch Kirby but was dodged as the blue man finally got a grip on his collar. Rob over heard Rossini practically scream over Johnson's comm, "Shut him down, shut him don now!"

Rob chuckled as Johnson layed unconscious. Kirby ripped the collar from the large man's neck and dropped to a knee breathing heavily as the fight halted, "Now what?"

The man walked toward the building. As he stood before it he lifted a foot and slammed it down as hard as he could. Several supporting walls crumbled from the vibrations it caused and the building dropped down around them. They team looked a bit shocked at this display of power as he spoke, "This man, Rossini was his name?"

Kirby stepped up beside him, "Yup."

"If he were to die tonight what would happen?"

"You'd be labeled a terrorist and Nexus would treat him like a fallen hero."

The man sighed, "When you reveal him for what he is, come find me and I will kill him slowly. I will not make a martyr of him."

Rossini dropped down in his chair as his monitors went blank, "S**t."

(To be continued)

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Malignant part 2

Continued from here part 1

Los Angeles, California

A creature that looks like a man stands over a frightened woman in the living room of an opulent mansion, "There's that look again. Why is it that when humans sell their souls, they're always so surprised when we come to collect?"

The woman began to whimper as he sighed, "Don't cry to me lady, I'm just the collection agent."

He snatched her up by the throat, "It's over, just accept it."

Just before he killed her another like him appeared, "Namtar, you are summoned."

He looked back still holding the woman, "I'm busy."

"Lord Asmodeus requires your presence."

Namtar sighed again as he snapped the woman's neck, "I hate the quick kills, so unsatisfying."

The two then disappeared.

***

Grigori main house, Outside Chicago, Illinois

Jared followed Ezra into a massive room filled with books. Ezra pointed to the stacks, "This library contains pretty much every bit of known information on demons, monsters, magic and pretty much everything else that the modern world can't explain. Also the librarian keeps an excellent music collection on hand, not particularly helpful but its nice to have."

The heard someone clear his throat from behind. Jared turned to see a small man like creature that stood no higher than Jared's thigh holding a book more than half his size. He looked Jared over, "He doesn't look like much."

Jared was mildly insulted, "What's that supposed to mean?"

The creature tossed the book to Jared who just now noticed the rough pale skin of the creature. He noticed him staring, "What, never seen a gnome before?"

"Umm, no."

The gnome rolled his eyes, "Oh good another blank slate."

Ezra stepped between the two, "This is Dovel, the librarian. Yes he's a gnome and no he will not have a conversation about it. The book is the history of your predecessors, I'd suggest you become familiar with it."

The sorcerer walked on as Jared tried to keep up, "Wait, gnomes are a real thing?"

"Yup, gnomes, elves, trolls all real along with many other things people assume are fairy tales but your primary concern is demons and the trouble they cause."

They rounded the corner and met the red haired woman who had been watching Jared. Ezra gave her a smile as he introduced her, "This is Jessie, from this point on she will be your handler."

He then patted her on the shoulder, "I leave him in your care."

He turned to Jared, "Welcome aboard."

With that he was gone. Jared looked to Jessie, "It that guy normal for this place?"

She grinned, "One thing you'll learn working here, normal is a myth."

***

New York City

A large creature in the form of a man sits at desk in front of a window overlooking Central Park as Namtar enters, "It was very rude to interrupt my work."

The demon lord Asmodeus looked up, "A new hunter has been discovered."

"And?"

"Is that not reason enough?"

Namtar dropped in a chair, "There is always a new one popping up. You've personally killed what, five?"

"Six, but this is different. Apparently there's some prophecy about him that Lucifer himself is concerned about. He asks that you nip it in the bud before it becomes an issue."

Namtar gave a nod, "Where do I find him?"

***

Aurora, Illinois

Bob Maxwell and his date walk to the house. Bob enters first and turns on the light as his date stops just inside the door. Bob looks back at her surprised face, "Yup I was expecting that. Its too bad, that's a fine looking suit."

The woman tried to step back but was stuck as Bob continued, "Its a salt trap, my Grandpa taught me how to make it. Old witch hunter trick, oddly enough it doesn't actually work on witches but demons get stuck."

He then opened the closet and slid away a hidden panel as he pulled out an ax, "Now are you gonna tell me why you things have been following my boy?"

The woman practically hissed, "He is the hunter."

Bob nodded, "That actually explains a lot."

He then swung the ax. at her head."

(To be continued)

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Malignant part 1

(I know I've been gone a while, I will get back to the stories I was writing before but this is the one currently in my head.)

Alexandria, Egypt 323 BC

A gathering of the thirteen most powerful sorcerers in the known world of the time sat in a hut having a discussion as a woman gave birth in a hut next to their's. The most powerful among them, an immortal called Ezra spoke, "The spell works a bit like a family curse, when he dies he will pass his power and knowledge along to a successor but to keep the next in line hidden it will be passed randomly throughout humanity."

A Canaanite mystic named Mawat gave an annoyed look, "So we spend life times tracking them down?"

Ezra shrugged, "Basic logic, if we can find them easily so can the enemies we're trying to fight. Its curse enough being born a weapon, at least give them a chance to be a child."

A nurse maid then enters holding the new born child, "He's a strong boy. He gripped the midwife's finger hard enough to break it."

Ezra walked over and took the child, "What name did his mother give him?"

The nurse looked upset, "She died before she saw him."

Ezra sighed as he looked down on the boy, "I hope her sacrifice was worth it."

He looked back to the gathering, "We have our demon slayer."

***

Aurora, Illinois now

Jared Maxwell wakes up to a blaring alarm. He pulled himself up as he tried to clear his head from his recurring dreams of men from the past fighting monsters. He walks out and goes to the kitchen where is father has his face in the paper. He doesn't look at his son, "Hey pizza boy, be somewhere else after work. I got a date and broke live at home kids are a bit of a turn off."

Jared dropped down in a chair, "Can you at least wait till summer's over before declaring me a loser for life?"

His dad chuckled, "I was kidding, but seriously, find something to do tonight. Relax about the college thing, you can always transfer from the Junior college to a decent one."

The phone started ringing and Jared went to get it but his dad stopped him, "Ignore it, some weird guy has been calling all morning. Keeps talking about demons or something."

Jared eased up before noticing the clock, "S**t, I'm gonna be late."

His dad chuckled again, "May have just figured out why you got so many rejection letters."

Jared rolled his eyes as he grabbed his keys, "Ha, ha. You're a comedy genius."

***

A few hours later Jared watched his manager complain at him about his life as he tried to look like he was listening. He gave a customary, "Yup" to his boss and hoped it was an appropriate response as he pulled a pizza from the oven. He was just glad they didn't have him lugging things from the freezer today. He'd always been unusually strong and his boss took this to mean he could use him like a miniature fork lift.

Unknown to Jared he was being watched by a woman just slightly older than him that sat at a table off in the corner. The waitress was annoyed with her since she'd sat for over an hour sipping a soda while texting with someone. The manager was convinced she was an inspector of some kind so the waitress was forced to take the loss of tips with a fake grin.

Jared suddenly had an odd feeling in his gut as a large man in a trench coat entered, his face hidden by a hood that hung low over his head. The red haired woman seemed to become nervous as he passed and the manager asked Jared to go over to the counter and keep an eye on the suspicious looking man.

The man turned and looked at Jared as he approached. He rounded the counter. The cashier moved to stop him but was hurled away as the man went for Jared. As he grabbed him by the neck Jared noticed his claws and almost reptilian skin.

Without thinking Jared grabbed the creature's arm and twisted it away from his throat and heard bones snap. He then pushed the creature away with enough force to drive it through the nearest wall. The creature stood just outside the wall. Jared noticed its hideous head before it pulled the hood back over. It moved to attack again but stopped as if by command and ran off.

The red haired woman texted to her boss, 'Yup, its him. But they found him too.'

***

The restaurant was closed early and after Jared gave the police a statement, omitting the part he was sure they wouldn't believe, he left to find something to do. He found himself in the food court of the local mall when an old man sat at his table. He looked up, "This table is taken if you didn't notice."

The old man shook his head, "In my day we were more polite when an old man needed a seat."

Jared waved a hand toward the several empty tables, "Take your pick."

The old man shrugged, "But I choose to sit here and discuss the creature you fought earlier today."

Jared looked curious, "I didn't fight any creatures, just some crazy bum."

The old man chuckled, "Do the bums around here tend to have talons and fangs?"

Jared's eyes went wide as the old man spoke, "The creature was a demon, specifically an Oni."

Jared gave a wary look, "You're that weird guy who keeps calling my dad, aren't you?"

The man nodded, "My name is Ezra, and I can prove what I say."

Jared got up and turned to walk away but suddenly found himself in an abandoned warehouse. He recognized it from his dreams. Ezra stepped up behind him, "You are the latest in a line of people born specifically to hunt and fight demons. This is the place where your predecessor died."

Jared looked passed a hole in a wall to see signs written in a language he'd never seen before but could somehow read, "Where the hell are we?"

"Ukraine."

Jared felt a bit of panic beginning as Ezra spoke, "Last year you broke a world record running your mile in gym class despite no training or any real effort at all, I'm willing to bet you've never once strained while attempting to lift something in your life. Never been sick, never had a severe injury or if you did you healed too fast to notice, am I right?"

Jared was still nervous as he answered, "How do you know all this? And how did we get here?"

They suddenly found themselves in front of a large castle like building, "We need to have a talk about your future."

Jared followed Ezra into the building and noticed people wandering around. He noticed a man alone in a large nearly empty room off to the side of the hall practicing with a wooden sword. The man gave him a nod as he noticed them walking by.

Jared then noticed the red haired woman from the restaurant sitting at a table talking to some other people. He turned to Ezra, "So how long have you been having me watched?"

"A couple months, had to be sure you were who we thought you were. This is the home office of an organization called Grigorri. We were founded originally to keep track of your kind and make sure you survived long enough to learn your job. We've since branched out a bit, we're now the primary source of research on and defense against the super natural and paranormal."

Ezra aimed him toward a table where Jared nearly fell into a chair, "This is a lot to take in, but I need you to bare with me for a bit longer. That thing you tussled with today is just the tip of the ice berg, you'll have much worse heading your way and you need to be ready."

(To be continued)

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The Sol Empire part 2

Continued from here part 1

Kanto Shuttle dock, Io

Ben stood with his parents and sister as they waited on the shuttle to take them to the ship that would carry them to Earth. While he stood, a short stocky man in an ill fitting suit walked into Ben causing both to drop their carry on bags. The man gruffly shoved Ben out of his way as he gathered up his things.

Ben became indignant and looked to be readying for a fight when his father placed a hand on his shoulder, "Relax, picking a fight with that man won't end well for you."

Ben glared at his father, "Wei would've knocked him out already."

His father shrugged, "Wei's parents are soldiers of Ganymede and built for combat. You're a noble and made to think and see. In fact you've been a bit lax in your training and I think now is as good a time as any to test yourself."

Ben gave an annoyed sigh, "Fine."

He stepped back from the crowd and closed his eyes while he took a deep breath. As he opened his eyes everything seemed to slow down. He took in every detail surrounding him. He looked to the man who'd bumped him and noted small devices planted on his boots and then looked to the papers strewn on the floor and saw them to be unfavorable budget reports. The man was under a great deal of stress.

Ben's father looked down to him, "What did you learn?"

"The man is a cloud miner from Jupiter, and he's in a bad mood. I figure if he's capable of toting heavy mining equipment while dealing with the gravity of the big planet means he could break me in half."

His father gave a nod, "And how did you figure this out?"

"He's got gravity enhancers on his boots so he can walk normally here, the suit doesn't fit properly because he doesn't wear it often and hasn't been to a tailor since he bought it. He's in a bad mood because his platforms are under preforming and he's being called back to Earth to explain it according to the memos."

His father looked back to him while he spoke, "And how do we know he's from Jupiter and not Saturn or Uranus?"

"Because Jupiter is the only place that still uses paper for anything important."

His father patted him on the head, "That'll do."

Cara then looked back, "Did you notice the shuttle arrived?"

***

2 days later, Olympus Monds University, Mars

General Feng Shun stood next to the recruitment officer from the school as he spoke, "It is an honor that your son is considering our school, in fact we've had an eye on him for quite some time."

The General nodded, "My son is quite fond of your sky ball team, he hopes to join it."

The recruiter grinned a bit, "Most of our current team roster hails from Ganymede as well, your home as you know, has quite the reputation for producing some of the best athletes in the empire along with the best soldiers."

The general rolled his eyes at the attempt at flattery, "I was told there would be a game today."

The recruiter nodded, "Oh yes, right this way sir."

The General and Wei walked along the campus into the large stadium. As they took their seats the field took on a green glow as the players entered. The referee stepped to the middle as the teams lined up on either side. He then tossed the ball into the air followed by two players launching themselves off the ground after it. The player from Olympus Monds kicked it off toward his team as the other just missed his attempt.

Another player ran up the wall to catch it and then launched himself toward the goal. He gained impressive distance but was tackled out of the air. Wei was excited to see the game get underway but his father looked on stoically as he commented on the tackle, "He could have avoided that, when you're on the team remember to always pay attention to your flanks."

Wei gave a nod, "Yes, Sir."

***

Sims Green House, Venus

David walked around the grounds as he waited for his father. He felt good bathed in the natural sunlight of his home world. He loved his school on Io but its cold stone and reflected sun light was hard on his plant like physiology. As he walked he'd almost forgotten where he was when a familiar voice came from behind, "Do I know you, boy?"

He turned to see his Grandfather, "Quit playing senile old man, stopped working once you took root."

His Grandfather stood rooted to the ground with bark coming up his legs, "I worried I'd be a full tree before you returned."

David looked down the line of former house masters like his father and his grandfather before him to see a stark reminder of his destiny as part of this grove. His Grandfather knew the look well, "I felt the same as you when I used to walk by here, but its not so bad to become a tree. You could do far worse than a nice spot in the sun and warm soil between your toes."

David gave a sigh, "Always look on the bright side."

His Grandfather grinned, "Because that's where things grow best."

***

Imperial Flagship Sang, Near Pluto

Admiral Harjo walked along the halls of his ship as Ig Locke and the Imperial Envoy followed along his tour. He stopped and grabbed the Envoy's arm as he reached for a door, "That isn't part of the tour."

"Our guest was promised....."

Harjo cut him off, "He was promised a tour of the ship, I was not told he'd have any access to sensitive areas and unless I receive orders from the Empress herself, that area is off limits."

The Envoy looked nervously to Ig Locke who gave a polite nod, "It isn't a problem, I completely understand the need to keep some things away from prying eyes."

Harjo eyed the Ambassador suspiciously as he noticed what he took to be annoyance in his voice.

A few decks below Lieutenant Achen was showing some of the Mawg guards to the dinning hall. He looked them over as he waited for the elevator to stop, "So, you have a name big guy?"

The Mawg looked down, "Mawg have no spoken names."

"Suppose that saves time on introductions."

The Mawg who stood behind him gave a glare, "Mawg have no need of small talk."

Achen looked him over before dryly stating, "Well, there's a shock."

As the doors slid open the Mawg noticed a Ka Zal engineer who was on a tour of the ship and bowed low. Achen thought it odd that they did this but the engineer paid them no heed, "Why do you bow, is he someone important?"

The Mawg stood as one spoke, "A Mawg must always lower his head in the presence of the masters."

Achen sighed, a bit annoyed at himself that he'd just now realized they were a slave race.

***

Ice Palace of Europa

Empress Durnin readied her things to return to Earth. She looked to her servant, "Prepare the place for the tourist experience. When our visitors arrive I want them to believe they've seen everything. The lower levels are to remain sealed. Understood?"

The servant nodded.

Her Adviser had a curious expression, "Are you sure now is the time to return to the Capital? It may seem rude to our guest to put off your meeting."

She looked to him, "My Father taught me that when you're meeting a potential threat, its best to meet him where your power can't be questioned."

Her Adviser gritted his teeth as he gave a short bow, "Far be it from me to question the wisdom of the man who quelled the Martian rebellion."

The Empress clenched her fist at his mention of the rebellion which caused the adviser to change the subject, "Your ship is in the air and a shuttle is waiting to take you to it."

She inhaled deeply, "Very well, I'll make my way immediately."

***

Australian Coast, Earth.

Ben watches from the beach as his mother attempts to teach Cara to surf. On the water Cara stared down at the water, "How exactly do you consider this fun? There aren't even any waves."

Her mother gave a wary look, "Perhaps your father should start testing you."

Cara shrugged, "Alright fine, I'll give it a look."

Her mother waited for a moment before her daughter nonchalantly explained, "We're going to get one tiny wave then the water will level out and be calm the rest of the day. The sharks that are coming with the wave won't be."

Her mother gave her a wide eyed look as she finished, "Maybe dad should quiz you."

***

Several hours later Ben's father walked in their beach house to see his wife reading, "No more surfing today?"

"It was a bust, but that daughter of ours is impressive."

He took a seat next to her, "Her teachers tell me her foresight is among the best they've seen. Ben is still struggling in that area."

"He's fine and comparing him to Cara is unfair. You said it yourself, she's exceptional. Ben has his own gifts."

(To be continued)

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The Sol Empire part 1

(This is not connected to any existing fictional universe, it is my own creation. Hope people like it, I'm trying to work my way out of writer's block.)

4,000 P.I.C. (Post Imperial Colonization)

Jupiter's Moon Io

A group of students sit in a crowded auditorium as the hollow voice of the school's computer system booms around them, "As we near a new year we start with a traditional retelling of the birth of the great Empire of Sol."

A student named Ben Sang rolls his eyes as the massive holographic image of one of his ancestors appears before them as the voice continues, "In the years prior to Colonization humanity was confined to Earth. The population had grown too large and the disparate governments of the world began fighting among themselves over the fleeting resources."

"During this time, First Emperor Douglas Sang amassed a great army and led a revolution against the corrupt ruling class of Earth and brought the nations together under his rule but his victory rang hollow because he knew the people still suffered. After much thought he decided to funnel as many resources as he could muster toward spreading human civilization toward the stars."

The students gave a bored look as the scenery changed to a sped up recreation of the colonization of Earth's moon, Luna. The voice went on, "After Luna had been settles Emperor Sang knew that humanity must continue expanding so Luna became a launching pad for the conquest of Mars. As terraforming and space flight technology improved the Second Emperor Sang set about the creation of the Green houses of Venus that to this day still provide most of the fruits, grains and vegetables for the Empire."

Ben sighed to himself, "Does this thing get longer every year?"

His friend, Wei Shun managed to prevent his impending nap to ask, "Aren't you proud to see your ancestors conquer a solar system for the eighteenth year in a row?"

Ben chuckled, "If they were that great then the Dynasty would have lasted more than five generations and I might be on my way to being Emperor."

Wei gave a grin, "Well thank the creator for small favors then."

Ben was swatted on the back of the head by his green skinned friend David Sims, "Is the history of my people boring you?"

David was a member of the race that had been genetically engineered to live on Venus and tend to the Green Houses. He looked back, "Why would I be bored by the minutia of making plant people?"

David grinned a bit, "Yea and learning about how you people hopped down from trees is so fascinating."

The two began to chuckle but were silenced by the glare from one of their instructors.

***

After the assembly let out Ben, Wei and David walked out with a look of relief. David reached his arms up toward the sun light amplifier that orbited Io and took in the light, "I was beginning to think I'd wilt in there."

Ben and Wei nodded as they walked off, "Where are you two heading?"

Wei shrugged, "Some of us require more than sunlight to feed us."

David followed and the three entered a large dinning hall. Ben grabbed a tray and got in line as he asked, "Any plans for the break?"

David gave a nod, "Heading back to home soil. My dad has me lined up with a job in one of the smaller houses, says it'll help me to understand my workers better when I take over for him if I started out as one of them."

Wei, "Well, I don't know how it will compete with pushing dirt in a hot house but my parents have me scheduled for university tours, I'm hoping to Get into Olympus Monds on Mars. They got a great Sky ball team."

Ben shrugged, "I already know what school I'm heading to, I'll be heading down to Earth. My mom wants to try surfing on natural waves."

Wei noticed people gathering around a large monitor as Ben's older sister, Cara came over to the table and spoke to Ben, "Mom said to remind you the shuttle leaves at five."

Wei looked over, "What's going on over there?"

She looked over, "I figured you twibs would have been all over that. Apparently some kind of lifeforms from outside the Empire made contact with an observatory on Pluto this morning."

The boys stared up at her in shock, partly by the news and partly by her nonchalant delivery. Ben shot up, "They found Aliens?!"

She shrugged, "Its not like its the first time they claimed it."

***

Ice Palace of Europa

Empress Mara Durnin sat as here adviser finished his report, "I was sure it was just going to be another dust cloud."

Her adviser gave a shrug, "Apparently, they were just as surprised to find us. We are working on a method of communication but they don't seem hostile at the moment."

She leaned back, "Let's hope they stay that way, but just in case put the fleet on a mid level alert. I don't want to start a fight but I don't want to be caught with my pants down either."

***

Imperial Fleet Flagship Sang, Near Pluto Orbit.

Admiral John Harjo stares out on the alien ship as a young lieutenant named Carl Achen came up beside him, "Problem, Sir?"

He nodded, "That's a war ship, I'd bet my pension on it."

Achen gave a wary look toward the ship, "To be fair, we're also on a war ship. Maybe they're just being cautious."

Harjo sighed, "Just got a bad feeling."

***

Durnin Observatory, Pluto.

Several Imperial Envoys along with communications experts wait nervously as the representatives of the alien race enter. Several creatures that appeared to be humanoid dogs entered holding large staffs. They stop and step aside as two smaller humanoid creatures stepped forward. One began to speak but noticed the humans didn't seem to understand them. He waved a hand as he pulled an orb from his robe and tossed it in the air releasing what seemed to be a gas into the air.

The envoys were on the verge of panic but stopped when the robed creature began to speak again, "I apologize for any discomfort we may have caused. It has been so long since I was forced to use the translation microbes. You are breathing them in as we speak but do not fear, they are no more harmful than the air you breathe."

The tension in the room eased a bit as he continued, "I am Ig Locke, I will act as an ambassador for my people and our guardians. I am of a race called Ka Zal."

He motioned toward the dog like soldiers, "Our guardians are known as the Mawg."

An Imperial Envoy named Boris Markin stepped forward and gave a polite bow, "My Empress bids you welcome to the Empire of Sol."

Ig Locke looked around, "This is an Empire?"

Markin shook his head, "This planetoid is a small part of the Empire that encompasses this solar system. I'm sure that my Empress would allow a tour when time permits."

The othe Kal Zal remained silent as he gave a look to the Mawg Guards. They gave a slight nod as they walked back toward the ship.

(To be continued)

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Gifted youngsters part 3

Continued from here part 2

(To curb any continuity complaints I want to be clear that from here on out I'll be doing my version of the X-men which will differ greatly from the 616 origin.)

Xavier's School for gifted youngsters, 1986

Most of the team stood near the front door as they awaited the arrival of three new students. Xavier had taken Scott off to the side to discuss one of them privately. When Xavier and Scott joined them Jean noted an almost nervous look on Scott's face.

***

A few minutes passed before Xavier reentered with the new students. He first introduced the original group then looked back to the new ones, "Allow me to introduce, Calvin Rankin, Lorna Dane and Alex Summers."

Scott walked up to Alex and began an awkward conversation, "Long time, no see."

Alex looked him over, "Look, you don't have to worry about playing big brother. Been a long time and we don't even know each other."

Scott was disappointed but hid it well, "Well, how about a tour?"

Jean walked passed them to Lorna, "Its about time we got another girl here."

Warren spoke up, "What do you mean? Bobby's been here all along."

Bobby glared, "Very funny. Who'd you pay to write that one?"

Beast extended a hand for Calvin to shake but he handed him his suit case, "Show me to my room."

Hank narrowed his eyes as he dropped the case, "Stairs are that way."

Calvin gave a condescending look, "Sorry, you have that Igor type servant look about you."

Hank slid his over sized hands in his pockets as he walked away.

Bobby looked to Warren, "Wow, the Professor found a bigger douche than you."

Warren narrowed his eyes at Calvin as he spoke to Bobby, "I assume, we're on the same page here?"

Bobby nodded.

***

Xavier came into Hank's lab as the new students took the tour. He looked over the various chemicals Hank was working with, "Bobby told me about earlier. Calvin does seem to have a bit of an attitude problem, but I'm sure once you two get to know each other..."

Hank cut him off, "I'm used to it Professor, he wasn't the first to make fun of how I look. Igor was new, usually its some type of ape."

Xavier sighed as he picked up a vial, "You don't need a cure Hank, you just need to accept who and what you are."

He went quiet as Xavier left the room.

***

Near midnight, the Boys' floor

Alex wandered out in his pajamas looking heading toward the kitchen when he noticed Warren and Bobby leaned over by Calvin's door. He leaned down behind them, "So, you hassling the new kids?"

Bobby turned, "Punishing a jerk."

Alex gave a nod, "Need help?"

Bobby looked to Warren, "Are we sure he's related to Scott?"

Warren handed Alex a box of plastic wrap with a shrug, " We have to be really quiet."

Before they could enter the door swung open and Calvin looked down on them smugly, "You should probably do some research before pranking someone with super powers."

Bobby got a bit of a grin, "Do your abilities include ironic punishment?"

Calvin seemed confused but was then horrified by the sight of his suddenly abnormally large hands and feet. As he backed away he noticed the wings sprouting from his back, "What the hell did you freaks do to me?"

Warren then noticed his eyes glowing red, "Oh crap."

He then let out an optic blast. Warren and Bobby moved just in time but Alex caught the blast head on. The hall around him was destroyed but Alex stood unharmed as the rest ran to see what had caused the commotion.

***

The Next day Calvin, Alex, Bobby and Warren sat in Xavier's office as he spoke, "The four of you will be sharing a room until the section of hall way you destroyed is repaired."

Calvin looked indignant, "That's not fair, they caused....."

Xavier gave him a look that silenced him, "As for you, I told your father that your abilities would require special attention. You will wear the ruby quartz glasses Scott lent you until further notice and you will be restricted to solo activity in the Danger Room until you can maintain control of the power you absorb."

He then looked to Bobby and Warren, "Hazing will not be tolerated and as for you Alex, perhaps your brother would make a better role model than these two."

As they walked out Alex asked Bobby, "So Scott is a teacher's pet?"

"Yeah, he's not so bad though."

***

After they left Xavier pulled out files and began looking over them to find new instructors.

(To be continued)

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Horror Inc.: Hungry Vol. 2 part 5

Continued from here part 4

The Ranch

Chris, John and Betsy sit with their heads buried in books. Chris sat his book down, "So, what's the problem with this Corvin guy?"

John didn't look up, "Its complicated."

Chris sighed and looked back to his book as John looked over, "I destroyed the only written version of a spell he wanted to do."

Chris closed the book," That's it?"

"No, like I said its complicated."

Chris and Betsy were now staring at him intently as he sighed, "We aren't getting anything done until I talk are we?"

He waited a beat, "Fine, but to really understand, you need to know something about my power. See, magic or whatever you want to call it, is based on this energy that flows all through the universe binding it all together."

"Like the force, from Star Wars."

John shrugged, "Sure, whatever moves this along."

Chris and Betsy gave a nod as John continued, "Anyway, witches and warlocks have the ability to manipulate this energy but it comes at a cost. Every time we use a spell it takes time off our lives, it can range from a few seconds to instantly killing you depending on the power it takes. We've been finding ways around this for centuries, that's why we have things like enchanted items and magic potions and all that crap. One day my great grand father's grand father was trying to come up with a healing spell for a woman in his coven with a sick daughter.

The spell worked for the kid but the side effect was the mystical equivalent of a nuke going off, the girl had been rendered immortal but every bit of life for miles around was instantly gone including her mother. My ancestor was horrified and marked it away as a forbidden spell. It stayed hidden in our family spell book for a very long time until I caught the plauge and my father used it to cure me."

Chris' eyes went wide, "Like as in the Black Plague? So you're saying you've been around since the dark ages?"

"Yes, now are you gonna let me finish?"

He sipped his beer and started again, "The thing is, immortality is like a cheat code for witch power. If you can't die you can cast as many spells as you want without worry. Corvin had been obsessed with the spell since my grandfather drunkenly told him about it before I was born, Corvin had been sapping the life of others to keep himself going for years but the process was getting more difficult so he spent years trying to find the spell.

By the time he'd found me, he'd come to the point that only direct blood descendants would work for him. He didn't trust a twelve year old to do it so he personally trained me in magic, since he knew no semi competent magic user would ever even consider doing it and he couldn't do it himself. Problem was, while I was learning I figured out what the spell actually did. Once I learned that he'd been having children for the soul purpose of extending his life I figured he was absolutely the last person that needed it so I ripped the page out of the book and burned it.

Because of this he decided that I was to blame for the death of his children to come and swore a blood oath to kill me and anyone else in my blood line for revenge."

Chris and Betsy looked horrified, "He kills his own children to keep himself alive?"

John gave a nod, "Yup."

He then reopened his book and tried to go back to reading but Chris asked, "If you're immortal, how can he kill you?"

"I can't get sick or die of old age but I can still die."

He then noticed how dark it was getting, "Why aren't you turning?"

Chris looked out the window, "I don't know."

***

New Orleans

A vampire named Silas sits in bar as he watches the master of his clan finish a bottle of whiskey. Marley stares on as he speaks to Silas, "When do you suppose was the last time he was completely sober?"

Silas shrugged as the clan master, Maedoc dropped the bottle, "1495, I was sober for a whole week as I traveled by boat to the new World for the first time. Most miserable week of my life."

Marley sipped coffee, "Ever think of AA?"

Maedoc nods, "I keep ending up killing everyone at the meetings, it just became too much of a hassle to clean up. Where the hell is Corvin?"

The warlock seemed to just appear behind him as he asked. He looked down on the clan master and in a condescending tone, "What do I owe the honor of your visit?"

Maedoc rolled his eyes as he turned, "You don't need the guards, if I was going to kill you I would have already."

Corvin took a seat across from him and noted the stack of shot glasses, "Is there any liquor left in the place?"

Maedoc straightened in his chair, "You're going to back off the kid, I don't give a crap what you do with Mills or the pack of mutts his son has joined but the kid is mine. Am I understood?"

Corvin gritted his teeth, "He needs to pay...."

Maedoc cut him off, "Mills didn't kill those kids, you did so your revenge doesn't even make any goddamned sense but that's none of my concern and frankly if I had my way, you'd grow old, die and go to hell where you belong but its aside from the point. You touch the kid before I give you permission and I will personally see to it this whole damned society you've built comes crashing down."

Corvin stood causing his chair to fall behind him and looked as if he would lunge at Maedoc who seemed unfazed. He then eased up and sighed, "Fine, I've waited this long what's a little longer."

He then turned and left. Marley looked back to Maedoc, "You think that'll stop him?"

"Not at all, but it gives me an excuse to cut ties with Black Wind when he tries to go around me."

Silas nodded, "I take it, there's a plan?"

"Have I ever steered you wrong?"

Silas shrugged, "Well, there was the thing with Hitler."

"He was a crazy guy screaming in a beer hall, who knew they'd actually put him in charge of something?"

***

(To be continued)

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Horror Inc.: Hungry Vol. 2 part 4

Continued from here part 3

England 1349

A cobbler named Stephen Mills stood over his father's book of spells. Stephen was born to a long line of powerful witches and warlocks but had chosen to leave that life behind. Now he looked on his son, John as he was slowly dying from the Black Death and desperately tried to remember his father's lessons.

He finally came across a page with a spell that promised to cure all ailments but was marked as forbidden. Stephen was a man with more power than intellect so he used it without hesitation. There was a bright flash of light and all life within five miles was instantly snuffed out as John rose from his bed in perfect health.

He looked down on his father's body confused as he picked up the book beside him.

***

Days later John wandered through the woods, cold and hungry. As he stumbled in the dark he came upon a man sitting by a fire. The man turned, "You have a cloud of death hanging over you."

John gave a fearful look, "I have nothing, I'm just walking through."

The man appeared behind him and snatched the book from his pack, "A bit young for a tome such as this. Do you know what it is?"

John shook his head, "Its my father's, he said he could cure the Black Death that was killing me."

The man looked him over, "Seems it worked."

He opened the book and found the dog eared page. A grin came across his face, "The Mills family spell book, I've been looking for this for quite some time."

John looked up, "You know my father?"

"More your grandfather, pleased to meet you. My name is Henry Corvin, and you are?"

***

The Ranch Present day

John sat cross legged next to the demon he had summoned, "Have you ever done this with a wolf before?"

"Once, it wasn't pleasant at all. Imagine being thrown out of an airplane without a parachute in a hurricane, that's what's about to happen to our minds."

John sighed, "Well, that sounds fun. Anything I need to do?"

"Nope, just try not to piss yourself while you're sitting next to me."

John gave a worried look as the demon grabbed his shoulder. John's senses were assaulted as the demon telepathically forced their way in. They appeared to be standing on the ground while the world swirled around them. The demon looked over to John, "Try not to puke."

"Will that hurt Chris?"

"No, but you're standing really close in the real world and I don't want to be puked on."

John looked around, "Where are the roars coming from?"

"Everywhere, the wolf doesn't have a subconscious. Its all right there on the surface, we'll have to dig a bit to get to the human part of his mind."

***

Edgar and Robert stood outside the circle. Robert turned to Edgar, "You ever deal with a demon before?"

"A couple times, not this particular kind though. I'd have preferred not to, smell of brimstone will be stuck for a month."

"You trust it?"

" About as much as I trust a plumber to build a space ship, but we don't have a lot of options here."

***

After a bit of time dealing with the mental torrent from the wolf John and the demon finally came across Chris. He sat curled in a ball in front of a mass of images flashing before him. The demon looked them over, "Anger and guilt, its like candy."

John felt a little disgusted by the near delight this creature had at the sight, "Let's get this over with."

"I've done my part, the rest is on you and him."

John's eyes went a bit wide, "What the hell am I supposed to do?"

The demon sighed, "Find the thought that's causing the most pain and figure out a way to deal with it. And remember, those roots won't hold him down forever."

John sat down and put a hand on Chris' shoulder. The memory Chris had of him hitting his mother appeared as he glared up at John. The demon rolled his eyes, "Show him your memory of what happened, if that's the one you bring up for him we need to get past it quick."

John searched his mind. The image changed to his point of view. Chris watched as a demon crept over his mother then entered her body. He watched as memories of the days that followed passed before him. His mother continually degraded until John finally was forced to personally remove it. It was a violent clash and John was forced to fight her back into the bed.

Chris saw his younger self watching in horror from behind a door.

The demon shook his head, "Possession, messy business. Did he claim be the devil, that kind love to pretend they're so important. They're actually more like fleas that get shook out of hell and cling to the first thing they can feed off."

***

John sat for what felt like hours but he couldn't be sure how time moved here. Finally they came to the memory of Chris attacking his mother. John was unprepared for this. He'd seen the aftermath of wolf attacks before but he'd never seen it as it happened. Chris grabbed his head and screamed at the sight and for a moment John couldn't help but feel a tinge of anger. He looked to see his son's agony and softened a bit, "You know she forgave you."

The demon gave a sarcastic nod, "Yes, because the word of the man who ditched him as a child carries so much weight."

John glared, "You could be helpful."

"I'm a demon, easing the minds of people is out of my wheel house."

John sighed, "Maybe I could block out the memory."

"Two things, one he's a wolf and magic won't work and even if it did it'd be like patching the hoover dam with duct tape."

John turned back to Chris, "Okay, I know I can't fix this today. I don't know if I can at all but you need to calm down. You couldn't do anything to stop this but you can stop yourself now. If you get lost in here you won't die, you'll just be trapped while the wolf destroys everything."

There was a low growl behind him as the demon looked back, "He's mounting a defense."

The wolf leaped toward John who rolled out of the way and looked to the demon, "What now?"

"Don't know, I've never actually been here to help before."

John hopped to his feet, "So, we're in trouble."

"He's not glaring at me."

The wolf lunged but stopped mid way as Chris grabbed him by the tail. Suddenly John and the demon found themselves standing in the summoning circle as Chris laid under the roots that John had tied him down with. Edgar yelled to the house, "The kid needs some pants."

***

John stepped out of the circle and spoke to the demon, "Thanks, hope I never see you again."

The demon turned to Robert and Edgar, "Tell your boss, I'll be collecting that favor soon."

John then released the spell sending the creature back to hell.

Chris was sitting at the kitchen table as Betsy explained what happened. John dropped down across from him, "We aren't out of the woods yet kid. We don't know what's going on with you and we have no idea if its gonna happen again."

Chris gave a nod, "So what happens now?"

John shrugged as he opened a beer, "I called some people, as soon as they figure something out they'll let me know. In the mean time I got a stack of books in my trunk, one of them is bound to have something about a werewolf/warlock hybrid."

"You ever hear of Google?"

John gave him a blank stare, "Go get the books."

(To be continued)

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