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 Ch. 46: All Out

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Dye
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PostSubject: Ch. 46: All Out   Thu Apr 29, 2010 7:19 pm

Left. Then right. Another right. And finally, a left. Blizzard paused in the darkness of an alleyway in eastern Wa-Kia, putting a hand up to stop his men behind him. Beyond, he could hear the tramping of many feet. Kobi’s Chaos Army was on the move, pouring into the town center. He hoped Priest was ready for them. Blizzard turned around and motioned for his men to follow. There was only one man there.



“What happened to everyone?!?!?!”



The one man shrugged. “I was the only one that followed you. Everyone else went with Saint or stayed behind with Priest.”



Blizzard groaned. “I knew it. Nobody likes me.”



“No! I don’t think it’s that…”



“Eh, what the hell. More for me.”



“More what?”



Blizzard ignored the question and went towards the end of the alley. In front of him, a battalion of heavy beserkers plodded forward, massive swords in their hands, eyes staring straight forward, skin purple with chaos infection. For a moment, Blizzard paused, waiting for half of the battalion to pass by, then took out twin chakrams, gleaming red with demon runes. He sent them arcing into the beserkers, watching carve through them. Then Blizzard threw in a handful of throwing knives for good measure and dived right in. A dozen men fell, daggers through their heads, while the chakrams took down another score as they boomeranged back into Blizzard’s hands. The beserkers wilted before him in momentary shock as they watched their comrades fall to the ground in the pieces. This respite gave Blizzard the chance he needed as he put away the chakrams, still dripping with blood, and drew twin demon blades, gleaming in the low light as stars came popping into the evening sky. By the time the beserkers had regained their momentum, blood was flying again.



There wasn’t much the beserkers could do to defend against Blizzard’s barrage of blades. If they relied on their armor, they were cut down, and if they tried to parry with their awkward swords, the blades were sliced in half and they were cut down nevertheless. The only real choice was to attack Blizzard, but that was impossible, as he was always on the move, first here, now there, somersaulting and backflipping and cartwheeling, swords whirling. Besides, once he was within range, it was impossible to swing in the narrow space provided by the streets. And if one of the beserkers missed, they would hit one of their companions by mistake more often than not. Chaos had been sown amongst its own soldiers.



Blizzard’s lone companion watched him carve through the enemy in shock, then decided to help out. He drew a bow and fitted an arrow to the string. He aimed carefully, trying to find a target in the dim evening light, then let loose. The arrow struck a beserker in the shoulder, sticking fast to the armor, but doing little more than that. The beserker turned and roared, raising his claymore above his head. The man rolled to one side, dodging the vertical slash, putting away his bow in the process and drawing a small hatchet. By then more beserkers had peeled away from the fight with Blizzard, eager for an easier target. The unarmored, lightly armed ranger they found seemed like a perfect choice. When the man got to his feet, he found himself surrounded.



“Do I get to die like this?!?!?!”



“You wish.” Blizzard shot passed the man in a blur of red. A moment later, one of the beserkers exploded in a mixture of blood and shattered armor. The next three were sliced in half by a horizontal slash, and the fourth was dispatched by an upward slash that split him from the stomach to the chin. Finally, the remaining beserkers reacted, with five of them bringing their broadswords down in a combined attack. A single blade stopped all five blades, cracking each one from the force of their impact, while the red blur slid sideways, slashing through their ankles and toppling them over. Blizzard went to work on them, stabbing each one through the head, then looking around for more enemies. There was nothing left to kill. Sheathing his blades, Blizzard walked back to the man, who was trying to wipe a layer of blood from his face.



“What was your name, again?”



“Uzamaki, sir.”



“Is this your first battle, Uzamaki?”



“Yes sir.”



“Well then, a couple suggestions. First, please don’t try to shoot at a beserker when you’re only five feet away from them. Try to distance yourself. Most archers would shoot from an upstairs window. If you do happen to be near a beserker, hit them first, preferably in the head where they have the least armor. And drop the ‘sir’.”



“Yes si…I mean, ok.”



An arrow whizzed by Blizzard’s head. Both turned to see a platoon of archers coming down the road from the east, arrows fitted to their bows. Blizzard sighed, blocking two arrows with one sword while sheathing the other. He pulled out a chakram and flung it into the group of archers, shaving through them at forehead level, taking skullcaps and brains with it. Uzamaki fitted another arrow to his bow, breathed a single word. Its tip glowed, and when he released, it split into many arrowheads, taking down the rest of the group. One archer managed to duck underneath the incoming arrows, and drew a dagger. Uzamaki panicked for a moment, then remembered his axe. The archer’s head toppled over, followed by the rest of he body.



“You see what I mean?” Blizzard came back to stand next to the ranger. “Take a few steps back before shooting next time.” Uzamaki nodded, then looked behind Blizzard. Reinforcements were coming. It was going to be a long night.



-----



Saint flitted through a backroad, making no sound as he stepped lightly over fallen rubble from the demon’s rampage. Behind him, a large part of Requiem’s army followed. They moved along silently for about ten minutes. Then someone sneezed. Everyone murmured a low “bless you” that sounded like a church organ as it echoed throughout the alleyway. Amateurs, saying something like that when the enemy was so close by. Saint turned around and put a finger to his lips, then paused in surprise. Ten pairs of eager eyes stared back at him.



“How come so many people are following me? Did anyone go with Blizzard?”



One voice piped up. “I was going to go with him, but everyone says you’re smarter than he is.”



“What does that have to do with anything?”



“Well, we all wanted to follow the smartest guy so that we won’t fall into traps or anything like that.”



“Blizzard wouldn’t lead you into traps!!! He’s not that stupid!!!”



“But he’s still not as smart as you are!” Saint groaned.



“What makes you think he’s not as smart as I am?”



“I heard that he cuts his hands on his own swords before every battle. That sounds pretty dumb to me!” Others piped up in agreement.



“It doesn’t matter! Have you ever seen him actually fight? He’s insanely strong!” The alleyway echoed with his yelling. Saint took a deep breath to calm himself down. “Think about it this way. Do you care how smart your enemy is if they have a hundred-pound hammer and armor as thick as your arm?”



“Well, if I were facing like that, I would hope that he’s too dumb to know how to fight.”

“Tough luck for you guys. We aren’t nearly that stupid.” This came from a sneering voice above them. Everyone looked up. All along the alleyway, windows were opening and arrows were poking out. One face, bearing the helmet of a platoon leader from the 13 Lord of Chaos, leered down upon the members of Requiem.



“FIRE!!!”



Saint swore as a hail of arrows came rushing downwards. Everyone made a break for it, heading towards the end of the alley. The lucky ones made it into a courtyard of stone, surrounded by tall buildings. The unlucky ones never left the alley. Saint turned around to count the soldiers he had left. Creed, Seth, and Fire.



“Looks like even the great Saint of Darkness can’t avoid falling into traps!” They all looked up. Even here, the windows were full of archers. The platoon leader had moved from the building in the alleyway to one of the buildings surrounding the courtyard, and could be seen strolling along behind his own archers, going from window to window, leering at Saint and his men wherever his head could be seen. Saint gulped. There were roughly fifty archers all told. Some had to pile onto the roofs of the buildings in order to get a good aim. All of them were aiming at his head.
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Ch. 46: All Out
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