The Color of Blood Chapter 13
By Brady Bryner, Bill Shofstall, & Anthony McKinley
Rocket Town, Cid's House 4:56 PM March 7
Shera was sitting with Marlene, both quiet, reading. Cid entered the room and sat down next to Shera, breathing quietly. He thought about smoking, but since Marlene was around, decided against it. He was very cautious of the young girl. He looked at what Shera was reading. Nothing interesting. Cid got up again and walked out the door. Niether of the two noticed him.
Rocket Town, Shanghai Inn 5:45 PM March 7
Cid laughed with, slightly drunk. "Anyway, so I ask the guy for a light. What does the fucker do? He 'accidentally' dropped some of the oil on my shoe and flicked an ash on to it. I ran like hell, and when I put it out, I kicked his ass. Never seen a stupid son of a bitch banged up so bad and alive." He laughed again, and leaned his head off of the bar. The inn was now three stories tall, with a bar and pool room, and a basement with card tables and two dealers. Due to its new attractions, Rocket Town was growing and seemed far more lively.
"That's one hell of a bullshit, Cid." The bartender wiped out the mug he had in his hand.
"Ain't a bullshit... I have on my white shirt with his blood stain." Cid took off the flight jacket he had worn everywhere. It now had a significant amount of stiching and patches to cover up holes. Underneath he was wearing a white shirt, with a brown stain near the collar. "That's from breaking his nose, when he fell forward onto my shoulder." The bartender looked surprised for a moment and then turned away, whistling. Cid stumbled back to his house, falling onto the floor.
"Cid!" Shera fell to her knees next to him. "Cid! Are you okay?"
"Huh? Yeah...yeah... I'm fine." He stood and shook his head while blinking, trying to focus.
"Are you drunk?"
"Just a little. Quit bein' so damn cautious... Is Marlene in bed?"
"Good.. Good..." Cid struggled to maintain balance as he walked to his bed, finally collapsing into it. Shera lay next to him, staring at the ceiling. Soon, the man's breath was a normal, steady pattern, sleeping. She stared out of the fiber glass window Cid had placed over the room. She stared at the stars.
She sighed, watching the stars, the glittering gems of the night. The seemed to move. At first she thought her eyes were playing tricks on her. As she watched, several stars shot over head in brilliant, beautiful colors. They looked the same as when Reeve had witnessed the same event, several years prior. Shera watched the stars for hours. They began to spin. She blinked and tried to keep her eyes open, but the stars began to move, darting all over, then stopping briefly only to shoot into another direction. She suddenly felt very lightheaded, yet not tired. She felt as if she were floating, levitating over the bed, and in a flash, she was in a black place, with lights shooting all over. She was watching the stars. She tried to grab some with her hands, but she couldn't. She ran in the open field of nothing, and then looked up. Above her, she saw the planet. Her mouth dropped, trying to maintain a smile. "Oh my God..." She laughed with youthful vigor and joy, giggling after most of her breath had left her. She fell to the ground, almost painfully. To her, it was no more then an intense dream. To Bahamut, it was a gift to a deserving child.
Far away, looking into oblivion, the huge dragon Bahamut smiled. "Was a good gift. You deserve it child. You deserve it for a life of sacrifice. A life of pain. Torment. You never gave up. You never complained. Few are deserving of such a gift, Amia." In Bahamut's language, Amia was a child of star fire. Shera had earned her name. Bahamut felt love for her. From that day forward, Shera was his child.
Midgar, Nanaki's Office 2:45 AM March 11
Nanaki slept in a small bedroom with Haktoi in his office, as they didn't want a house or apartment. He was running his paw down her back, strumming slowly. He was so tiredbut couldn't sleep. He had drank at least a fifth of vodka, and was slightly drunk. His wieght and size made him more resistant to becoming drunk then a human. Haktoi rolled over and nuzzled him softly, murmuring. "Nanaki... It's cold..." Nanaki had noticed it as well. He looked for the window, finding it closed. He shook his head and rolled back over, and then looking for a device with which to keep warm. He saw a thin blanket on a chest. It would provide ample warmth, and did. The two became comfortable and began to fall asleep. Nanaki still found himself awake though. He looked at Haktoi's face. She looked so beautiful. He ran a paw down the side of her face, so mesmerized by her beauty. Years of self loathing, pity, hatred of nearly all that came near him, gone. One look changed his past. All of those years he had hated himself, his father, and most humans, where gone, like they had never existed. He never worried about them after that. The blame of Yuffie's death was gone as well. It hadn't been his fault. He knew that. All the hatred that he felt was reserved for evil and destruction. Haktoi opened her eyes, drawing them over Nanaki. She noticed a strange scar. It looked so much like a clover. She didn't care. She loved him. She pitied him. She couldn't bring herself away from him. Nanaki kissed her forehead. The two continued to exchange kisses.
"No! No. No... Yes..."
His memory of telling Tifa whether his whole species was like Anthony and Kianki or not. Pathetic. He didn't care though. It didn't matter. Nothing did.
Midgar, Kianki's Office 3:27 AM March 11
Kianki sat quietly at her desk, looking at papers. "Once again Anthony, I swear I'll kill you for this..."
Valhalla, Dr. Methin's House 4:56 AM March 11
Anthony put his knife to the child's throat. "And so I compromise, an eye for an eye. You killed my son." The man stood in the doorway of the boy's room. "I shall plague you to the same injust pain."
"Please don't kill my son. Kill me."
"I'd have begged the same thing." Anthony looked at the child, crying. He remembered his own son. How he had acted. Anthony fought it back.
"Kill him..." A familiar voice entered his head.
"No..." Anthony instead threw the knife into the man's leg. "Be glad of my pity. Few are so lucky to escape my wrath."
"Who... Who are you?"
"A messenger of God." Anthony picked the man up by his neck, surprising as Anthony was thin and bony. "Moritesno becknon liaoso..."
"At least you get to keep your soul..." Anthony threw the man out of the window in the room. He turned and left, the child crying in a corner. "I am sorry..."
Valhalla, Streets 5:32 AM March 11
"No one is permitted on the streets until six." Anthony touched the man's chest with a finger. The soldier shrieked as a pink essence flowed from his heart into Anthony's hand.
"I am the Glomi. The Soul Drinker. Devourer of Hearts. Maybe I'll save you." Anthony closed his hand around the essence, the man falling limp and dying. "Hades... You are given this token of my appreciation for power, and may you keep him for all eternity." Anthony unclenched his hand, and the soul blackened, then disappeared in a puff of smoke. Anthony smiled. He had the power to destroy souls. Finally, his conscious caught him. His smile faded, jaw dropping. He had destroyed a man's soul for telling him to get off the street.
"What the hell is this?" Two more soldiers, running their patrol, stopped at the body. Anthony pressed himself to the wall, hiding in darkness. The thick clouds that polluted the sky kept the city eternally dark. Anthony noticed this and saw a large reactor not to far away.
"What better to way to hone destructive powers then to destroy?" Anthony ran toward the reactor, acting upon thought. He stood at the gate to the reactor. The sentry was asleep, but the scorpion gaurd was active, and had a compliment of tanks. Rufus took no chances due to the war. He had second thoughts, but decided to go in.
"I need I.D. before I let you in." The gaurd stood in a front desk, saw Anthony as a civilian. No real threat. Anthony shook his head, the man falling asleep. The sentry had awoken as Anthony approached. Another man, taller, dark black hair, and a warm smile, stepped to the sentry and woke him up. "Who are you?"
The man rolled his eyes, thinking. "My name is..."
"You have a name too?" The sentry thought surely that this man was mentally deficient.
"Wierd name. Do you have a Shinra I.D. pass for this sector?"
"I don't need an I.D." The man sent a telepathic message to the sentry.
"I don't need an I.D." The tall man slapped his forehead at the sentry's stupidity.
"You don't need an I.D."
"You don't need an I.D. Go in." The sentry was oddly content. The handsome man entered, being inspected by gaurds, but no robot seemed to notice. Anthony had already reached the main reactor. Soon, they both stood before it.
"Who are you?"
"You know me. My name." The man's eyes gleamed, some how glassy and mirror like.
"Correct. On part of the sacrifice of that man, bravo. Very good. Few have ever grown so powerful. I'm going to make you an offer. Work for the espers."
"Wait... You want me to work for them? Not you. You're evil and cruel..."
"No I'm not. I get such a reputation as I have a place in the astral plain that happens to lie next to Thil, land of the damned. I'm actually quite kind." The man changed form to a younger man, wearing a dark robe and hood. "In life, I was known as Nicholas, or Nick. I was a dark mage, and made one of the orbs shine. You now own my robe. The study of the dark arts doesn't make you evil, it merely binds destruction and other chaotic forces. Chaos can be used for good, though he believes that only evil may come from it, and thus uses his power for evil. I was one of the first Light Warriors. My father had been a powerful king, and a friend to Etigin. Etigin is Lord Cait Sith as you know him."
"You were human?"
"All espers were...or something on this planet. Not always human. Mog was a moogle of course, and Bahamut was a dragon. You know, things like that are common. Now come, we must get out of this reactor." He turned back to his original human form. "We can't be here much longer..." Anthony and Hades disappeared like so many times before. Anthony found himself in his office, Kianki asleep at her desk. He shook his head and got a glass of cheap wine.
Bral Pai, Tower 12:43 PM March 23
Chaos sat upon his throne in his capital city, Bral Pai. Astos puttered about screaming orders to the dark elves working for him, making devilish weapons. Lich calmly ordered the dwarves he had enslaved. They walked about making powerful weapons and machines. Kary's fire demons did her biddings, melting metal for the dwarves and elves. Tiamat's dragons hovered around the desert, keeping any curious merchant or traveler from taking their airship too close to the country. Thak, a twelve-headed dragon, had just finished tearing a wandering airship apart. Chaos made his presence unknown, keeping privacy. Armies of skelton warriors were formed, reanimated by some strong necromancy. The military of the damned. Ghost ships filled the seas terrifying sailors. In the dark, late at night, the wandering man would die by the hands of the dead. Bral Pai's streets were bathed in the blood of the sacrificed child, stolen from its homes in the dark. Ghosts dragged the righteous into the depths of Hell with them. The Ancient Forest soon saw a phantom train rolling through it. Golem's appeared at the caves of Narsh, trying to eliminate the rest of the moogles. Kupek's men would tear the stone giants apart with magic. The espers fought amongst themselves trying to find out what to do about Chaos. Thil's gate opened, the damned pouring out, filling the most wicked country. Hell had come for all of the life of the Planet. Cardia. People were kidnapped and tortured. Chaos's supreme vision was clouded. The humans could not stop him, but something could. He couldn't see it. It was not the three. It was an esper. He roared in anger. He saw his fate at which he would die. Chaos. "I can not die... I am God!" He crushed his throne, statues in it, tore embroiderings showing his vision of the future. He stopped at one. One he had never seen. A man stood over Chaos. Chaos lay dead beneath his heel. The man carried a sword and wore a crown. A powerful cape blew out behind him. He wore steel armor and boots made from a dragon. What he saw then terrified him. Terrified evil. He recognized him. It was a king, a wizard, and a knight. It was Etigin.
Ith Taro, Catacombs 1:23 PM March 23
Ra sat in the catacombs. He knew what he wanted. The destruction of not only this world, but of all. He worked endlessly to open a gate to another world or time. He didn't eat or sleep, as he didn't need too. He began finally to open a gate. It shimmered like a clear night sky. Grinning, he stepped away, magically locking this gate. He'd use it at a later time. He got visions of a planet. A large planet, but not very many cities. It reminded Ra of his home. When the world wasn't so old a populated. His family. Friends. People he had known as a human. He couldn't cry. His skin evaporated the tears instantly. If it did not tears would have poured down his face. Now he was a monster. He would bring his pain upon the world.
Midgar, Streets 12:34 AM March 24
Lord Cait walked quietly in the darkness, until he came to a little girl, crying. She saw him, but couldn't gasp, as her breath was gone. "What's wrong?" The girl stammered and let out more tears.
"I'm cold, and afraid..."
"At least you aren't alone."
"I wasn't alone before you got here. They're here."
"Where?" He looked around seeing the streets empty except the little girl.
"Next to me..."
"I don't see them."
"Why did you say they were next to you?"
"They're after me. Like the other two."
"Because HE wants me..." Lord Cait instantly understood who "he" was. Chaos. He focused his thoughts, first seeing a rough outline of a figure, and then the person. A young woman, two old men, and a young man stood there.
"Come with me... HE won't get to you." She looked confused but stood. He mumbled at the dead, a green light washing over them, and they disappeared. "Come now. I have a place where you may be able to stay. What's your name?"
"My name is Etigin. Call me Cait." He walked in front of her and took her to a large house. He knocked on the door. It opened, and Cait Sith, wiping his eyes, pressed the button again, closing the electric door. Then again, and again, and again. The door opened and shut on Cait's head, as he slept with his finger on the button. "Wake up!" Cait woke up.
"What!?!" He looked around and banged his head into the wall. He explained Angela's case to Cait. "Okay... I'll keep her here for a week, she can use my room. I never do." Angela found Cait's room satisfactory, and then some. It had a large, comfortable bed, even though Cait was small. It had a television, an assortment of books, and a small table. Angela fell asleep, thankful and unhaunted for the time.
Valhalla, Rufus's Office 4:54 AM March 24
In Dark Nation's final hate of Rufus, he decided to drive him insane. Dark Nation actually smiled. Rufus looked oddly at him and then back at the paper before him. Dark Nation could speak quite well, but no one really knew. "Hey Rufus." Rufus looked up, seeing no one in his office. He shook his head and went back to writing. "Hey prick."
"Huh?" He looked up again, angry. He went back to writing.
"Fuck yoooooou." Dark Nation looked away.
"What the hell is going on!?!" He sat still a few moments, Dark Nation staring blankly at him. "What the hell are you looking at!?!"
"Oh shit!" He fell backwards out of his chair.
"Who's the stupid one now?"
"God, I'm tripping."
"See ya' in hell. Bu bye now." Dark Nation turned around, nudged the button on the door, and left. He left the city, and disappeared onto a cargo vessel, seen later in the ancient forest, speaking with Celtarions that still lived in the jungle. He had grown so intelligent from having his blood mixed with theirs, and was quite accpetable to their society.
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