The Return Chapter 11

First Encounter

By Firstborn Dragon

The next day the six took the air ship to the Hidden Woods. And there they parted. Mariel leading Jack and Cecilia into the forest. Zed, Boomerang, and Rudy waited on the air ship.

Boomerang looked at Rudy. "You never did explain that comment earlier. But I think I understand." Rudy turned to look at Boomerang. He began to rub his arm, the same one that had been replaced a year ago. The same one that Zeikfried had taken… "You’re the last…"

Rudy nodded. "Yes. The last, of a supposedly failed, and destroyed experiment. But for some reason I was left alive. Maybe the Elw knew…"

Boomerang shook his head, in disbelief. "I can’t believe that they allowed one to live after…"

Zed nodded. "Neither could I at first. But it would explain much, including his incredible ability with his ARM…"

Rudy looked at them both. He was glad that the others had left him alone with the two. Jack and Cecilia may never understand, but Rudy felt comfortable around them. "Zed, what’s the real reason you’re willing to help me. Is it really because I helped you?"

Zed shook his head. "No, that’s not the only reason, but it is part of it… Ever since that day when you stopped Jack from killing me. I knew you were different, or that’s what it felt like to me. Ever since then, I’ve wanted to repay you. I never thought they’re be a way I could. But if you really want to know about your other half…"

Rudy nodded. "I do. I’ve always felt as if I were missing something."

Boomerang looked at him, puzzled. "Why would you want to learn about something that nearly destroyed you, your friends, and your planet?"

Rudy sat there for a moment, then stood up, and turned to look out over the landscape. "You sound as if it were the fault of the power’s. But it’s not. My kind was originally given life to stop your kind. But in the end, we ended up helping you." He turned to face the two. "But now, hundreds of years latter, I helped to stop your kind. It wasn’t the power that made me good, or bad, it was the way it was used. Perhaps that’s why I want to know. It maybe that by knowing all about my power, and my past, I can stop the trouble now. Maybe it will even help me to stop Zeikfried from controlling me."

Zed stayed seated against the cabin, his sword beside him, then slowly nodded. "I think I understand… It’s like my power, I still have it, yet now, instead of trying to destroy with it, I help to protect the one I love."


Meanwhile, in the woods.

Mariel had taken the lead. Knowing she was about to see her brother always did that to her. "The gate is just up ahead. I only hope that…" Mariel, Cecilia, and Jack had entered the woods, and were heading towards the gate. But when they arrived…

"Wh..what happened?"

The gate had been shattered…

Mariel shook her head in disbelief "This is impossible. There is no known way that a gate can be shattered."


A voice broke out from behind a large chunk of the gate. Mariel rushed over to the voice. "No…Brother, what happened?"

Her brother tried to explain, but he was too weak from the loss of blood.

"The…Fo…Forg….forgotten attacked, and…"

"We destroyed you pitiful gate. Some of the fools escaped, but not many." Mariel turned around, and screamed. Cecilia, and Jack turned, weapons ready. What stood there was a creature out of their worst nightmares. It stood roughly man height, and looked a little like a demon. But where as most of the demons were human like, this one was not. It had two sets of scaled arms, attached to a body, like that of an apes. It had a long serpent like tail, and neck. But it was the head that got to Jack the most… "You bastard! You have no right to that. She would have never given herself over to you!" It was the same head as Elmina’s. Exactly the same as on the last day, when she risked her life to protect Jack. The last time Jack saw her before she became Lady Harken …

"Foolish mortal! We care not for your kind. We shall eradicate you, like the vermin you are. But the Elw, we shall have our revenge!" The creature suddenly dashed forwards to grab Mariel, but Jack was faster. With a slash of his sword, he hit the one of the creature’s arms… and it fell off. But the creature just stared at it’s fallen limb, and laughed. Then, to the amazement of the watchers, the creature picked up it’s arm, and re-connected it to it’s body.

"You see! You’re pitiful weapons cannot harm us!"

Jack shook his head in disbelief. And then, he remembered what Boomerang had said, a few days past…

"There are only two ways to kill a demon. Either to get another demon to kill the first, or else to use a demon forged weapon…" And then he remembered the sword. "Like the sword left after our final fight!"

Jack quickly placed his back pack on the ground, and placed his sword beside it. Then, he withdrew the sword that had been left behind by Boomerang after they had defeated him at the coliseum.

"Maybe that couldn’t hurt you, but this can!" Jack leaped forwards, sword extended, and once again, stuck the creature across an arm. But this time, rather then laughing, it let out an inhumane scream.

"The Slayer’s blade! But how…? No matter. We shall meet again, but next time, you shall die!" The creature vanished without a trace. But Jack didn’t put the blade back. Cecilia looked at him, puzzled. "I though you got rid of that after the war…"

But Jack shook his head. "No one wanted it. And since I had nowhere else to place it, I kept carrying it with me. Guess I’m glad I did."

The two looked over to Mariel, who stood weeping over her brother. Cecilia walked over, and knelt beside him, and shook her head. She got back up. "I’m sorry… There was nothing you could have done. There’s nothing I could have, or can do."

"He died bravely… Perhaps we were mistaken about him." The three looked up. An Elw walked out of the woods. "I’m sorry there was nothing I could do either. The elders, and some of the others, felt the Forsaken awake. They sent a small group over to try and seal the gate. But mid way though the spell, that creature arrived. We scatted, but your brother stayed to try and hold it off. The fight that resulted caused the gate to explode. The only way the gate can now be opened is from the other side. But so long as the Forsaken live…"

The others nodded. They understood too. Cecilia looked at him, hope in her eyes. "Tell us, do you know how to prevent a demon from taking control of another’s mind?"

The Elw shook his head. "Such a thing is impossible…"

Mariel shook her head. "No Elder, I have seen it done. One of the hybrids survived. You met him during the war…"

The Elw laughed. "I am not an elder child. I am called Markus. But a hybrid…I remember now. Is that how they were turned during the first war?" The others nodded. "Strange. Still, I must see if any of the others survived first. I fear the Forsaken will come after us…"

A short time latter, Markus returned, with three other Elw. Like Markus, they appeared frightened, but they recognized the warriors, and Mariel. One of the Elw turned to Markus. "Now what shall we do? The original plan…"

"Has failed. I know." Markus shook his head, concerned. "Mariel, you and your friends are familiar with this world. Is there a place where we could go…"

Mariel nodded. Yes, but…"

"But what?" Markus was clearly curious.

Mariel looked at them, uncertain how her next comment would affect them. Or how they’d react. "You shall have to accept travailing with a pair of demons, and a highbred…"

The other Elw looked at her in disbelief. One of the others spoke up. "Surly you jest…"

But Jack shook his head. "I never liked it at first, and I still don’t. But Rudy needs their help, and with the Forsaken, or Forgotten, or whatever they’re called loose, we’ll need all the help we can get."

The four Elw looked at each other, in concern. Markus took the lead again. "So be it. I suppose there is a reason you travel with such unusual companions…?"

Jack answered that. "There is. The Forsaken are loose, and we shall need all the help we can get… Even if that means working with some that I would not rather work with…"


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