Diverting Armageddon Chapter 1

Hostage Crisis

By Citadel

The clank of the black knight's armor was the only sound in the seemingly endless, dark, and macabre hallway. Torches lined the walls and cast an eerie and scary, flickering glow on everything. The only thing on John Reaper's mind, however, was his only child. His armor was solid black. His helmet rapped tightly to his head, except on his face where the visor jutted out almost like a bird's beak. Holes lined the visor so he could breath and see. Five red dashes on his left shoulder showed his rank. Level five general, the highest rank any soldier could receive. His sheath's tip clicked against the side of his leg with each step. It, and the sword within, were of the strongest alloy ever concocted. A mixture of the five strongest metals, and then infused with magic, it was nearly indestructible.

John made a left turn down the hall and walked out of the dark catacomb into the center courtyard. The courtyard was a two-hundred square foot square that was scientifically placed in the dead center of the palace. It was the most heavily guarded of any place in the palace. The mere fact that John was even able to sneak in was astounding; his army would kill to know how. He didn't worry about that now, all he wanted was to find his girl.

In the center of the courtyard was a large stone box. It was the holding place of his child. He knew, for he could sense her body a mile away. His whole family could sense each other's blood. It was another blessing of their strong magic they had been blessed with.

As he drew closer to the large cube he drew his sword. Its distinct metallic ring filled the air. The sound was always followed by guts or limbs falling to the ground. he pushed up his visor and broke out in a jog to the box. The armor was heavy, even with the aid of magic taking some of the load off, but he had become used to it in all his years.

Two large iron doors blocked his way into the room. John didn't even pause but picked up his left foot and kicked the two iron doors in with a thunderous explosion that was aided by his destructive magic.

In the room he saw a man holding a knife to his daughter's throat. His blood boiled at the sight. His glare could've killed small children.

"John, John," the man absconded, "you should've known someone would be guarding her. My army said no one was to guard her; they believed no one would dare break in. But, you see, I know you. I knew you would find a way even into this fortified palace. How you did it, I'll never know." The man smirked. "Now slide that sword over to me old man. And take off the helmet. Then let's walk outside. I want some fresh air." John laid the sword on the ground, keeping a close eye on the two of them. His girl's silent weeping made his heart want to rip out the man's guts with a toothpick. He then removed his helmet. His gray hair fell down around his face and shrouded it from him for a moment. He threw his head back as he straightened himself and his hair flew back behind him and rested comfortably on his shoulders like it had been trained to all his life. John's wrinkles around his eyes became daggers of ice with his glare. His mouth was a grimace of pain at the sight of his daughter in captivity and hatred at the people who would do this to him.

He turned around and walked out of the stone cube a good distance and then turned to see the man come out as well. He was shocked to see that his own sword was now being held at his daughter's waist and the knife at her throat.

"You silly old man, now if I happen to drop my knife I can always cleave her in half with this sword."

"Then I would fry you where you stand with my magic, you scoundrel." John's voice was deep, refined, moving. And most of all, it always made people listen.

"I only have one condition. You surrender to our army, no questions asked, and I don't kill her. And if I even think that you're about to use some magic on me, I'll kill her where I stand. Understood?" John nodded.

"I don't work for the Dal-Ro army anymore. I quit."

The man's eyes went wide as saucers. "You what? You can't quit! You're a general!"

"I quit the moment my daughter was captured."

"Daddy help me," she whimpered. John's insides twisted with pain at the sound of her voice in so much fright.

"Shut up girl!" The man pulled the knife closer to the girl's throat.

"Don't!" John screamed. "She's only sixteen!"

"Oh yeah? As if I care. I was twelve when one of your battles killed my whole family you shit! MY father was a great man. You killed him yourself."

"That was war. It was nothing personal!"

"It WAS personal! It was my father! MY mother! MY sister! MY relatives! I am the only McVader left on the planet!"

John's eyes went from scowl to curiosity for a moment. "Davin McVader?"

"Yes, That was my Pa's name!"

"He was a horrible man who deserved to die. Your killed almost 200,000 people in his lifetime. He had to be killed."

"Just as you will die too! Your commanding of the armies has lead to millions dying! Maybe you should be executed! Just like you did my father!"

"I drove the sword through his heart as an act of mercy!" John raved. "I should've tortured him!"

"Just like you will be when word gets out you're a traitor to both sides. You know even better than I that anyone who is neutral in this war is an enemy of both armies. You'll be dead in a week. You'll have both fronts looking to kill you! You're crazy!"

"No, I've just woken up to the fact that the Dal-Ro and the Jakra armies are both wrong! We've both sinned greatly! It's time to end this dispute and live in peace!"

"Only when you're all dead will I live in peace," McVader said soberly. He made to slit the girl's throat when suddenly a whip rapped around his hand and pulled his away. He was pulled to his left and staggered to the ground.

"Wendy! C'mere!" John yelled. She ran straight to her father.

"Oh Daddy!" She rapped her arms around him and gave him a tight hug.

"Well, looks like I was just in time!" A young man in a long trench coat proclaimed. He had a whip in his hand, and the bulge of an obviously very large shotgun on his left side. "Wendy! You okay?" He asked.

She turned her face to look at him. Her face brightened at the sight of her love. "Jones! Jones you made it too! Yes, I'm fine!" She called.

"Jones!" John called with disdain. "I told you not to come!" John's face went to one of remorse. "But thank you anyway."

"Stop thankin' me and get the hell outta here before the Jakra find out we're here!" John nodded and scooped Wendy in his arms and ran off with her back into the catacombs. "And as for you!" He cracked the whip on McVader's face, taking off a long stretch of skin on his cheek.

"Aaaarrgh!" He screamed. He scrambled to his feet and staggered back; holding his cheek to slow the bloodflow. Green light seeped out from where he was holding his cheek and the blood seeped back in and the skin reformed. "YOU! Who are you!" He screamed.

"Jones Wolfgang is the name. Whipping and," he opened his trench coat to show off a very large gun, " marksmanship are my games. Now if I was you I'd mosey on outta here," pronouncing here like heeyah, "before I hafta git rowdy."

"Rowdy?" He half mocked. "Rowdy you say? Hah! I possess magic! That beats any physical attack by at least three to one."

"I've been known to cast a few spells in my days." His young arrogance flowed to the top with the hint of challenge.

"You, the one who saved Wendy, our army's greatest hostage, must now die."

"Now tell me your name. I'll deliver the name to the local mortician."

"Karl McVader," he said with a grin. Jones shrugged and cracked his whip inches from Karl's nose. Karl's look of surprise faded and his hand shot for his sword. Before he could get a firm grip on it the whip tore off a large portion of his hand's skin. "Yowee!" He cried in pain. The burning pain traveled all the way up his arm. He could barely move his fingers; they were numb with the shock of the blow.

"Like dat?" He pulled his whip back and hurled it at Karl's head. Karl's hand suddenly grabbed the tip of the whip right out of the air before Jones even saw a movement or flinch from Karl. "How the?"

"Ya like dis?" Karl mocked. He pulled the whip right out of Jones's hand and the handle part flew into Karl's waiting hand. He glanced at his hurt hand and the skin miraculously healed.

"You--you!" he stammered. Karl pulled back the whip and snapped at Jones. While it was flying through the air, flames raced up the whip impossibly fast. Jones barely had time to fall on his belly to avoid to whip. He heard it crack above him and the whip fell apart into ashes. Jones was on his feet and threw open his trench coat with both hands. He pulled out a shotgun as the coat closed. He aimed it into the air and pumped the gun. He aimed at Karl and fired. A split second after he fired the gun a green shield suddenly flared up and blocked the bullets. "Unbelievable," Jones exclaimed.

"Fire 3!" Karl yelled. Red heat gathered around Jones. Three thunderous explosion blew Jones from the ground. He landed with an "oof!" and almost stopped breathing. He gathered his last bit of energy to cast a cure spell on himself and pulled himself to his knees. His face a permanently scarred from the extreme heat. He'd had no shields up when he'd been hit like that. Almost everyone had a slight delay before the magic was cast; that gave you time to place a shield up. this guy was different, he'd had no delay time. Jones put a hand to his cheek and cringed, his skin was scaly and he could tell it was hideous.

"Who is this guy?" he raspy voice asked no one in particular.

"Oh my God are you hideous looking!" Karl cried out. "You look like something from the pits of hell!" He started laughing hysterically. "Jeez! If I looked like that I'd kill myself! HAH!" He mocked.

"NO!" Jones screamed. He jumped to his feet. "Ice 3!" A blue glow surrounded him and a large ball of ice appeared in front of him. It gathered cold for a moment than suddenly shot forward, lead by a sharp point. The large icicle rammed into the green shield and ground itself into ice-dust. "Blast that shield!" Jones's temper got the best of him and he cast his strongest spell. "Freeze!" Cold air gathered around Karl. He yawned in response as the blue air began to send ice particles flying into the shield at a rapid rate. Then a huge block of ice appeared in a blue flash. It quivered for a moment and shattered to nothing. Jones fell to his knees in fatigue.

"Tut, tut, you should know to never show your full strength early in battle. Or don't they teach you that in Dal-Ro schools? Blaster!" he screamed. Jones realized the normal pause-time was there. Karl's hands were outstretched, the fingers wide apart. Each of the fingertips shot out a dark blue stream of light that connected at a point. The two points became spheres and the spheres pulled toward each other. The ball grew and grew and finally exploded in a daze of white and blue lights that mesmerized Jones.

"Wendy, I love you," he whispered to himself. Those beautiful lights were the last things Jones ever saw.


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