Whirlwind Chapter 4
By Danny Ascencio
The night was still and quiet, and that made it perfect for a few hours of reflection and contemplation. After all, Ramiuu had more on his mind that night than he had ever thought he would have to deal with. He sat quietly thinking about his father, Ramza Beoulve. History taught that Ramza was the embodiment of all that was evil in the world; however, the Lost Scriptures told about a different man. The scriptures told of an honorable man willing to die for the ideals of justice and peace. If Ramiuu was indeed the last remaining Beoulve, then that made him part nobility. Would he be allowed to reclaim the lands that once belonged to the Beoulves? What about the Hokuten? He wasn't even a knight; how could he possibly lead them? These questions plagued Ramiuu's mind. Ramiuu grew restless and began to pace about the room like a caged gorilla.
Shouting cut through the night's silence like steel through flesh, and Ramiuu knew that steel would fly soon enough. The shouting must be the outer guards sounding the alarm. Ramiuu immediately ran to the Duke's quarters.
"Sire! Are you alright," Ramiuu shouted as he ran into the bedroom. The Duke was already halfway into his chain mail, and had his sword sheathed at his side. "My duke, I need a bow and arrows in order to defend you, where is the armory? The duke told him to go into his closet and to grab the crossbow stashed there. Ramiuu grabbed the crossbow, which only had six arrows with it. Then he heard a female voice coming from the hall. The voice screamed out, "EARTH SLASH," and then Ramiuu heard something smack into a wall. The Duke hid in the closet, and Ramiuu crouched down behind the Duke's bed, and prepared for battle.
Kalia stepped cautiously into the room, expecting a guard or the Duke to attack her, but no such attack came. She looked around the room carefully, and immediately saw two places where the Duke could be hiding. He was either in the closet, or behind the bed. She slipped a special item out of her pocket. It was a lightning ball, which when thrown explodes with magical lightning energy. She threw the lightning ball behind the bed where she thought the Duke could be hiding. As it flew through the air a man of no more than twenty jumped out from behind the bed. The lightning ball exploded, but the man was already clear of the blast radius. He was definitely not the Duke because his clothing was extremely simple and not well taken care of. The man lifted his crossbow and shot an arrow at her. The arrow sang its deadly song as it flew through the air with perfect aim, toward Kalia's throat. Kalia's ninja blade whipped past her throat with incredible speed and deflected the arrow so that it landed harmlessly on the ground next to her. As the man tried to nock another arrow Kalia charged at him, about to slash his throat, but right then the Duke ran out of the closet and attacked her. She barely dodged his overhead slash, and as she countered with an attack of her own the man launched another arrow at her. Kalia jumped backward into a double flip and landed on the other side of the room. Her odds where not good.
The Duke stared in amazement as the assassin dodged his attack, and then dodged Ramiuu's arrow. This assassin was truly a skilled fighter. As she landed on the other side of the room, the Duke could tell she was assessing her options, so he decided to give her a few of his own.
"Surrender might be a wise choice, as the odds are stacked against you," The Duke stated carefully, biding his time. He realized that the guards would rush though the door in a second, and he glanced past Kalia. In his mind he figured that if he could keep her talking for just a few more seconds it would be too late. Unfortunately Kalia realized the same thing. She reached into her pocket and slipped three shuriken in between her fingers, and threw them with delicate skill at the man with the crossbow. He made a valiant effort to dodge the deadly barrage, but one of the shuriken tore into his ribs and another into his thigh. He went down hard and the Duke turned his head toward the injured man. Perfect! Kalia jumped through the air and her ninja blade flashed lightning on the way to the Duke's throat. His only saving grace was that she missed as he tried to dodge. Instead her razor sharp blade cut through his chain mail at the shoulder and bit deep into the Duke's flesh. Both Kalia and the Duke froze for a millisecond, and then Kalia ran toward the other end of the room where a window should have been. Then she realized something she had noted earlier. This mansion had no windows on the second floor! She had no escape route except the by the way she had entered.
"Damn!" Kalia thought to herself, "I can't play around with these fools anymore. Why am I holding back!" She turned around to face the Duke and the other man. The man was kneeling on the floor and unsteadily aiming his crossbow at her, and the Duke's shoulder was slightly slumped; yet he still held his sword up in an aggressive stance. Kalia's mind struggled with the thought of having to kill again. Still, she had to kill the Duke or Delita would destroy the orphanage. As these thoughts raced through Kalia's mind, she ran out of time. The two lancers that she had avoided from outside the mansion burst into the room and attacked her.
As the two lancers rushed at Kalia to kill her she realized for the first time why she would fail this mission. She no longer had the will to take a life. As the lancers lashed out with their spears Kalia parried their attacks and kicked one in the head. He went down and as for the other she punched him multiple times in his chest plate while screaming, "repeat fist!" Her powerful punches sent the lancer straight to the ground. Then she walked right up to the Duke, who still had plenty of fight in him, and she feigned an attack at his legs. As the Duke brought his sword around to parry, she flicked her ninja sword around with incredible speed and stopped it a centimeter from the Dukes throat.
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