Kyra Valdis scanned her surroundings and pulled her eyes from her open bloodstained hands. The air stilled. The open meadow silent.
Kyra saw no one. Not even an animal. Then she gazed at the bright red and silver box three meters from her and wandered towards it. The long grass scrapped her shins as she walked towards the object.
It looked out of place—odd even. Every part of her screamed: bomb! However, she was still transfixed by it. She felt as though she were under a spell. She moved forward, ignoring the long grass scraping her legs and the wind running its fingers through her hair as it danced along the meadow.
Her thick hair fell back into place over her back thighs and her chest down to her waist—lightly soothing her body—making its presence known.
Her fingers stretched out towards the box, and she watched as it algorithmically unfolded itself. It didn’t surprise her. There was a strange yet familiar insignia of a snake and a target upon the centre of a black square box in the colour of blood red. Dry ice pooled out of the open red box and sipped over her toes, feet and ankles.
Reaching down, Kyra pulled out the medium-sized black box. Touching the insignia, she watched as it lit up before flashing three times, and the box automatically opened the same way the larger red box did, but within sat a uniform.
Black, red and silver were the colours.
There was a single set. It was a skin-tight scaly textured suit. Kyra pulled on the one-piece suit that worked to dress without hesitation before finally finishing with the boots and gloves. She shoved the knife in her right boot and scanned her surroundings before climbing to her feet. Concentrating on the sound around and searching for any figures within the distant foliage.
Pulling her eyes from the forest. She placed the ration of food and the empty canteen in the empty sack and strung the bag up before carrying it. It didn’t take long until Kyra entered a world that was no longer peaceful; instead, it was deserted, littered with the strong scent of blood and bodies. The uneven ground was covered in expunged vehicles that were abandoned and untouched, complementing the eerie sight of death induced memorial.
Kyra couldn’t begin to think about any of this. Instead, her body walked forward into the discarded battlefield, on to its own as if it had a mind of its own. There Kyra saw a dark grey capsule. It was as tall as her but a little wider. She noticed a number painted on the pod it read: Zara x291. Then below it was two images, one of a diamond with two markings underneath and the other a red sword. Once she was close enough, she placed her hand on the pod, and like the box, the pod peeled away from its covers and revealed to her a suit of armour, weapons and a utility belt.
Without thinking, Kyra clutched the armour and began putting it on. It eventually concealed her body, and she felt it trap her body within its confines. Kyra placed a rifle on her back, keeping the hunting knife on the exposed parts of her shin. Once Kyra was ready to head out, she heard the chime of an unsheathing sword. Kyra glanced over her shoulder, and there stood a man with silver hair, blue eyes and blue scales concealing his body. He wore silver gleaming armour and a sterling silver cloak. “demon inbound,” he said into his commlink.
He pulled out a silver crossbow and fired a sterling silver arrow that lit up in a green trail behind it. Kyra saw the arrow’s trajectory and knew where it would hit, so as quickly as Kyra could, which was slow to her. She stepped aside and felt the arrow graze past her lower jaw.
Stunned, he fired another arrow. Kyra dodged the next one. This time he ran towards her and fired three more arrows. Kyra blocked all three with her armour and noticed that action caused damage to her armour. ‘System malfunction.’ a computerised voice declared as Kyra saw the sterling silver arrows embedded in her forearms. Within an instant, they vanished.
Kyra avoided the next attack from his sword and backhand sprang away. She brought up her left arm to shield her from the next attack, only to realise she didn’t have a shield.
His sword stabbed the ground where Kyra once was. He yanked out his sword that materialised on his back.
Kyra pulled out her rifle and used it to block the oncoming sword. The sword sliced through her rifle, and she slipped away. The ground beneath her boots became unstable, and she almost lost her footing. He took that opportunity to send a kick towards her armoured chest—sending her flying through the field of corpses.
Kyra landed on one body and cringed. She pushed the deceased man’s face away and closed his eyes before crawling to her feet.
‘Armour malfunction.’ the computerised male voice declared that same voice from before. ‘Warning. Armour has been compromised. I repeat, armour has been compromised.’ the voice said, and Kyra found it challenging to concentrate.
As she stood on her feet, she tapped the side of her helmet, hoping that the voice would shut up, it did, and eventually, Kyra noticed the man rushing towards her at inhuman speed. He stopped before her and shot the blade through her abdomen. Kyra gasped in shock and felt her body cough up blood. “you won’t win; you disgusting Xzandian scum.” the man said. “we Excelians will win, this war, count on it.”
He yanked out the sword and darted for her neck. Within moments, her body reacted and brought up her forearm guard. As Kyra did, Kyra noticed the blade was blocked and wrapped around her suit of armour was another set of armour—this time, it was black. Electricity tickled along the surface of the shell, and Kyra bought up her fist and sent it towards him. Kyra was stunned by what had happened. Next, her fist glowed red, and the Excelian man was sent into the pod, three hundred metres away.
Kyra felt something buzz throughout her suit, and Kyra realised that her suit was repairing itself. Kyra felt the pain in her abdomen subside and felt it cool over as it healed.
Kyra regarded the Excelian man and watched as he darted for her once again. This time Kyra stepped to the side and brought up her leg. Her foot glowed a bright blood-red colour as it connected with his jaw. His fist twisted around for her jaw, and Kyra brought up her hands to block the oncoming attack. Kyra kicked him again in the head and he stumbled back. He leapt into the air as his body bent around with his legs following to deliver a perfect tornado kick. Kyra slipped back, and that was how they continued—battling each other and not before long—Kyra came out the victor.
Then she sauntered past his deceased body, climbed up the dead bodies’ slope, and headed over to the pod. Then glanced around and made sure there were no more enemies, considering he sent a transmission of his location—Kyra knew she had to evacuate quickly if she wanted to avoid any more death-defining attacks.
Kyra checked inside, making sure she had everything—the one thing Kyra didn’t grab was her utility belt. Grasping it, Kyra noticed beside it was a chip. Kyra held up the chip and regarded it closely. It was black and red. There were no instructions on it other than the shape of it, it was a diamond-shaped chip. Kyra glanced down at the inner part of her forearm and noticed a shape exactly like the chip’s marking its designated location.
Kyra placed the chip inside and waited. Kyra noticed a light flutter of light before her faceplate and saw a red line. “Greetings, user.” said the male voice. “I’ll be your combat user guide and your trusted AI. You can call me, Zargon.”
Later that day, the ground trembled under the distant explosions. A black scaly skinned monster with Xzandian armour travelled vastly over the ruined treetops, building rooftops and the many other streetlights, desperate to reach the source of the scent that quirked her nose. “My lady where are we headed?” asked the small scaly blue dragon nervously as she glanced up at Kyra and clung to the hood of her polished silver cloak.
She did not answer. Instead, pushed on, staring ahead. Effortlessly, landing in the centre of the now-abandoned street was the only light source that sprang from the torched vehicles further ahead. The sound of armed rifles flooded her ears as her deadly red eyes graced the sight displayed before her. The explosions continued as lined formed squadron assembled around her. A man gaited forward—his band of loyal bullet vest armoured men and women, all eyed the demoness with hostility. “You’ve reached the end of the line. So, I suggest you stand down.” the man spoke whilst aiming his semi-automatic rifle.
Kyra Valdis observed the group with a cold blank gaze. “My lady?” quizzed the dragon as she clawed her way above and around to the brim of her silver cloak, her paws nestled comfortably within her silver hood as he peered over his master’s fierce armoured shoulder—eyeing the group before turning his concerned gaze to his only ally.
The woman did stop, for a moment, contemplating her next move. With her next actions drawn, she continued forward. “I said: stand down!” growled the leader. The same man stepped back in fear as an overwhelming demonic presence and pressure leaked heavily out of the silver-haired woman’s pores. “Fire!”
Bullets rained towards the woman whose uncanny speed allowed her to zip past the bullets fired. The shots moved ten times minus a second to the demoness, causing her disadvantage to become an advantage. Infusion to it all, the ground beneath the soldier’s feet began to rise after she vanished into a cloud of black smoke and struck the ground.
It broke, shattered and shifted causing all soldiers to become disarmed or off-balance. Like the commanding officer, several fell unconscious whilst others gazed upon the powerful black scaled demon with anger and unmasked fear. The woman stopped before the captain. “Stay out of my way if you value your life,” she warned, glaring down at the now unarmed soldier—accused of wasting her time in her eyes.
With that said she continued her journey, leaping from ruined building to ruined building in search of that source—in the trail of that scent. He’s close, she thought and surrounded. Her ears perked at the sound of pacing boots and loaded arms ready to fire. Soon an order was declared—simultaneously meeting the sound of fired bullets and their emptied shells and not the sound of her whimpering companion that barely hung onto her to cloak as she zipped past blocks and blocks of damaged and destroyed buildings, parks, houses and overpasses.
One overpass that she had to take her time leaping around the distorted elbows of the shattered and its severed bridge passing over the armed forces of hunters below. Coming to a halt, she peered over her shoulder and spoke, “Zarix stay here.”
The scaly demon glanced up at his master in surprise. “But . . . I don’t—”
“You will do as I say.” she edged, eyeing the weaker demon who cowered in fear.
“y-y-yes lady Kyra.” he stammered.
Kyra waited for the fox-demon to hop off her shoulder before turning her gaze to the large stretch of the forest below, far from the portal but just beyond the city and its tall skyscrapers barely grazed the invading motherships. Leaping off the thirty-story building that managed to stay standing, she fell. Her form drifted before she somersaulted—heaving her body forward—effortlessly creating a lighter landing. Grounded, she sprinted along the ground within moments before stumbling upon the savaged gunfire.
She regarded a long silver-haired man hiding behind a boulder. Her relief turned into anger.
‘It’s about time you showed up.’ he spoke, his worlds tickling the forefront of her mind.
‘Why are you playing with them? Finish off those mortals. Virgil is fighting the giants all by himself.’ Kyra growled.
‘I’m not playing, just teasing.’ he purred.
‘There’s no difference Altair. Your brother is already mad.’
‘As if his anger matches lucifer’s.’ he laughed before speaking, ‘give me a moment.’ and so she did. Waiting at the edge of the hill that moulded into a small valley of a park that didn’t resemble the ounce of happiness and peace it once held. The armed forces inched closer to Altair, who sprung out from where he was—slipping between every man and woman he classed as a threat.
The sound of gashing wounds, pouring blood, surprised gasps and painful screams greeted her ears as she continued to wait. Her senses carved into every stone, bend, tree and being within the large park, including the tall troll behind her. A small smile greeted her lips as she slipped past him, his axe missing her completely. Unsheathing her sword, she leapt forth, slicing the troll in two before lightly landing on her feet once more after her little flip in mid-air. ‘Good to know you took care of him.’ Altair spoke as his bloodied sword lined his broad black armoured shoulders.
‘So, you knew he was there this whole time?’ Kyra glared at Altair with a sinister gaze as she crossed her arms. Altair continued to walk toward her unphased by her rage.
‘Of course. He would have been her appetiser.’
‘Sorry to ruin your dinner.’ she mused. Once he climbed the hill, he stopped before her—with the inclined land Kyra stood a head taller than her comrade.
“Don’t be. There’s plenty more where that came from,” he spoke verbally this time as he glanced up at Kyra who smiled. A small gasp caught their attention and the two shot their heads to the sound.
“Demons!” accused a man. His feet strumbled back as he held up a rosary beaded crucifix. His dark eyes regarded the two with fear. “Stay away!” he called with his empty threat.
Altair stepped forward. “How rude. You know nothing and yet to place judgement upon us. Who are you to make accusations?” he pushed as he stepped gracefully towards the man who jumped back with each step as he shook and trembled at the bloodied demon before him. “I could be just like you, human. And what do you do, classify me as what you deem fit?” Altair smiled, “In a way. I’m happy not to be a part of your disgraceful race. No wonder the Xzandians arrived. Too bad he didn’t get all of you.” Altair leapt and forced the man against the tree. Tearing open his throat, his fangs devoured the flesh and meat he required. Taking the fill of his shoulder, neck and chest, he stopped glancing at his fellow lieutenant behind him. “Want some?”
“No thanks, the stench of human remains never sat well with me.”
“Suit yourself.” he shrugged, turning back to his meal and devoured what was left of the now-dead man. An hour or so later, the once fleshed human was nothing more than a skeleton with small minor chunks of meat—Altair didn’t have time to tear off. He stood from the carcass and regarded Kyra. “Where did you say Virgil was?”
“Right here.” a voice called from the shadows of the silent grey forest.
A male demon stepped out of the darkness and into the light as his silver red, black armour glistened under the overcast sky. Altair eyed Kyra with a risen silver brow. “I thought you said he was fighting the giants.”
“Yes, at the time. You do realise a good two hours have passed since then?”
“And you didn’t move?” he accused. Kyra glared.
“She did. Whilst you quenched your thirst, she did something productive and aided me while you didn’t.” Virgil spoke, his words cold and expression blank—a facade all three deamone shared.
“What?” quizzed Altair with an amused tone and a blank expression he continued, “I didn’t get a chance to eat before we left.”
Kyra, with a blank expression, soon reprimanded Altair like a child. “You had plenty of time to eat before we left.” Virgil’s reassuring hand upon Kyra’s shoulder stopped her from going any further as she turned her gaze to her commanding officer.
“No need to repeat what he already knows. Anyway, are you done, brother?” Virgil inquired and Altair stood whipping his bloodied lips and smeared jaw.
“Done,” Altair confirmed.
“Good.” Virgil tossed a red handkerchief towards his younger twin. “Clean yourself,” he ordered and turned his heel. Kyra glanced at Altair with a warning look in her warm, vibrant red eyes before trailing after Virgil who led the way.
A few moments later, the group stumbled upon the large armies of Xzandian giants. The hill they stood upon stretched out below, in the distance displaying the thick brown, green shoulders of the primarily muscular armoured giants who knocked, pushed and stepped on everyone and thing in their path. “Whoa.” Altair mused with a whistle as his long silver hair, like Virgil’s and Kyra’s, danced in the wind. Their black and blood-red armour lined their forms whilst Kyra’s black scales and silver armour made her stick out thickly build brothers like a sore thumb.
“Those are the giants. The offspring of Xzandians and humans. The ones we’ve been sent to eliminate.” Virgil stepped forth and spoke.
“Are those the Behemoths?” asked Altair as his red eyes glazed upon the oversized beings. Kyra regarded her old friend for a moment noting the curl of his lip and the snarl of his fangs. Turning her gaze back to their enemies, Kyra stepped beside Virgil.
“May I?” she asked, and he nodded. Kyra’s silver cloak transformed into two large, massive thick silver wings. She took to the air whilst the brothers patiently waited.
Kyra soared high above the ruined city by the sea. The shifting waves smashed against the high ragged cliffside. There was no native wildlife present that caused Kyra to stop with her silver large web-like wings flapping behind her—keeping her airborne as she regarded the tension filled the air as her warm-vibrant red eyes locked on a large shadow beneath where she hovered, roughly two kilometres from the cliff.
After soaring through the city, passed the Excelian who didn’t—compared to them—notice a blue-silver sized fly. Kyra searched for their weakness, eyeing their armour and balance carefully. Until she was swatted away and flung towards the ocean, surface where she skimmed along before using her energy countering the force-filled reaction of her weight enough to stand on the water before taking to the sky.
Not once did she notice the shadow that trailed after her. Even now she eyed it with confusion before it gradually faded away. Brushing off the oddity she turned her gaze back to the Excelian who continued to shove their way past the dark glass screened buildings. Several energy beams rained down on the Excelian, undoubtedly from the humans who held their ground as their ray guns fired. She knew their actions were in vain—though regardless, her thoughts were pulled short at a sharp crackling sound. Glancing down, massive teeth, swallowed her whole.
Altair and Virgil swept over the area as fast and high as their black glossy feathered wings could carry them. With the loud rush of the air, Altair called, “I don’t see her!”
“Circle and keep looking. She’s bound to be somewhere?” yelled Virgil as his vibrant warm blood-red eyes scanned the dark oceanic void below. His thick lips arched into a deadly snarl—regardless of his moulded blank expression he spent centuries perfecting—his anger burned.
Altair led the two as he dipped down towards the ocean surface. The white silver bubbles jumped aside, returning each splattering drop to its thrashing surface. He zoomed above the ostensible like a bullet, eyeing the dark shadow sceptically beneath him that soon followed. Altair stopped his feet shifted under the calm swaying dark blue waves.
The water thrashed and shoved apart as Altair slid across the veneer coated in violent waves. Unsheathing his valiant secular demon sword untouched upon his scabbard cosy within his black, red armour. The mouth of a giant sea serpent sprang forth from within the deepest depths of the sea, screeching. To any mortal, the following subsequent actions would have occurred too quickly to decipher.
Virgil on the other hand, regarded the sight with a smug air. He knew he needn’t worry, for she was a worthy adversary in his eyes and to those who made the mistake of underestimating her true potential. A quality he was proud to know existed within the unique divine beauty that was her.
Beneath Altair’s feet, the ocean bubbled, foamed and fizzled. Using his energy, he thrust back from the violent festering pool of brine. His form jumped high, and within an instance, a crashing sound emanated throughout the area as large, jawed teeth ripped open Kyra, whose wings threshed her higher into the dark grey pooling clouds. The sight of the sea serpent stretched tall as she avoided the teeth that snapped shut and watched as the sea monster returned to the sea, slowly crashing back down under the abysmal obscure ocean.
Altair eyed Kyra with surprise whilst Virgil smirked and flew towards her, noting, “I knew we had nothing to worry about.”
Kyra smiled, and Altair glared at his brother’s comment, beating his wings, he flew towards the two. “Yeah right! you were like ‘circle around she’s bound to be somewhere.” Altair mimicked in a tone exactly as Virgil would sound should he even consider reacting to the emotions he harboured beneath. Virgil remained calm and spoke:
“don’t take her words out of context. Kyra knew she could handle herself.” Altair glanced at Virgil with a risen silver brow. Before Altair could pester his brother further, Virgil vastly changed the subject. “In any case, those Excelian need to be stopped.”
Kyra and Altair agreed, “there’s a portal in the distance.”
“Something that can be closed without much effort,” Altair commented.
“Then let’s get started,” Kyra announced.
Moments later, Kyra, Altair and Virgil flew towards the Excelian that continued to wander from the large blue electrical portal—a gateway to the nexus and bridge through time and space, transit. “We have to shut that off. The Excelian are piling in!” Altair urged as the trio landed on a suspension beam out of harms’ way.
“I know, but how?” demanded Kyra as her vibrant red eyes locked onto the damage and the many destructive energy beams falling onto the unfortunate Excelian—those without warning were obliterated.
“We’ll take care of that.” motioned Virgil. “In the meantime, I’ll get rid of those fleets. They’ll most likely use that to wipe out our reinforcements.” Virgil eyed Kyra, and she nodded with both understanding and agreement before transforming her silver cloak into her webbed silver shiny wings. The air was cool to the touch of her features and loud in her sharp ears. Like the flash of lightning, she sped through the air with the sonic clap of her wings, exhibiting the actual speed, one that rivalled the speed of sound.
A science-fiction dystopian world with superhuman elemental manipulators known as Excelians who live within the Earth’s Crust as they hunt for the twelve pieces of Midnight Eclipse. In the underground country of the Fire Reserve, New Icarus is home to the Excelians. Long ago, they were Human but due to a suppressed gene every Human carried, they awakened, then were hunted and feared for their exceptional abilities. Centuries have passed since those dark times, and the Excelians now live peacefully in the City of New Icarus, harnessing the power of their élanocytes cells that give them their elemental and supernatural abilities. A series that follows the story of Gothalia and Noel-Len who have to survive an ancient war. Узнайте больше о Excelian Universe.
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